This was quite possibly the longest summer of my LIFE. It was exceptionally hot around here, we found out that our house gets absolutely no cross breeze through it (despite living almost on the bay), and I spent the majority of it waddling from one air conditioned place to another. Squeezing into summer clothes after having a baby i not flattering at all, so I was quite excited when I woke up to rain and a chill in the air this morning. I'm glad to see that the weather is starting to catch up to our fall decorations.
I made these pumpkins as centerpieces for Thanksgiving a few years ago. At one point, I had leaves with everyone's name embroidered on them, but I think those are in a bag in the garage.
My sister-in-law, Ashley, and I both share a love of fall. Last year, we sent each other some of our favorite things (hers were way better than mine). Here's one of the items she sent:
When I lived in Northern California, there was a store called the Cranberry Merchantile in Sunnyvale that I absolutely LOVED! They had all kinds of handmade items and they switched their items out for every season and holiday. Fall was my favorite time to shop there, and I would save my money all year for it. Here are a few of the things I bought:
And fall just isn't complete without some Halloween decorations. I don't have all that many, and the outside of our house isn't decorated at all, but I absolutely LOVE these bat candles. When you light the tea light behind them, the eyes glow and are super creepy:
While in Korea years ago, I came across these figurines. I thought the little boy holding the pumpkin was just too cute. I get excited to take out my harvest people every year:
And to top it all off, as if it wasn't fabulous enough that we woke up to rain and chilly weather, I received this in the mail:
Did you see that? The IRS is removing my penalty. Are you jealous of my persuasive writing skills?
And fall wouldn't be complete without a little college football. I can't wait to get these 2 dressed like twins again. Today, I'm going to try to find Payton a yellow headband so people don't think she's a boy.
Happy fall everyone...hope it's chilly in your neck of the woods!
Actually, it's more like lots of change. Our house is changing, my body (obviously) is changing, the relationship that Cory and I have is changing, and the things that I now see as important are forever changing. I'm 38 weeks and 4 days today, but according to my calculations I should be more like 39 weeks and 3 days (I'll keep the details of that calculation to myself. Here are 2 pictures from the past 2 weeks:
I've had a few health issues that have had us worried for the past 2 months or so, but I've been able to control my blood pressure, and all of my NST monitoring has gone well. As far as we know, baby girl is about 7 pounds as of last Thursday, and I'm 1cm dilated and 70% effaced. Our doctor is on call on Wednesday, and there's a full moon on Thursday, so Cory and I think the chances of her coming this week look pretty probable. I guessed August 4th on our baby pool because that's my half birthday and 4 is one of my lucky numbers. My last day of work was last week (except for reals this time), and I'm planning on spending the upcoming week doing whatever I feel like doing. What a concept, huh?
I partially think she's not here yet for a few reasons. First of all, I needed to stop working and finish a few projects in the office. My nesting has crossed over to the office, and I've really enjoyed having the clarity that some complicated decisions have required. I've been worried about leaving "my kids" for two months, but I have them all placed with fabulous tutors while I'm out, and it's not like I won't be stalking them and checking in on them anyway. I hope to take Payton on several walks along the water to my office to check in and make sure things are going smoothly.
Second, I needed to schedule a hair appointment, get my nails done, and clean out my closet. I've accomplished two out of three, and I have to admit that cleaning my closet doesn't sound as exciting as it did 2 weeks ago.
Finally, I think she's still not here because she's been waiting for me to finish her rocker. My grandmother used this rocker with my mom and all of her brothers. She passed away when my mother was 13, and I've heard stories since I was a little girl about how my mom used to sit in it when she missed her. My mom used it with my brother and me as well. There were many nights that she sat awake at night, rocking me to sleep in this chair. I had terrible ear infections before I had tubes put in my ear around 3 years old, so this was the only way for me to sleep while inclined. When my mother asked me if I wanted to use the rocker for Payton, I was honored. I don't know how my mom grew up and had her own children without her mother, and for that reason alone, I'm so excited that we get to share all of these special times together. So while Cory looks at the rocker and thinks it looks like hours and HOURS of unnecessary work to refinish something that still looks like it's from the 1900s, I look at it and am reminded that there have been mothers before me that somehow pulled it off.
Here it is after a few coats of primer and semi-gloss paint before the fabric was attached:
We stripped the previous mauve velvet-like fabric, sanded down the brown stain, and painted it white-ish. Cory helped me attach the new fabric with a staple gun, and then I finished off the edges with ribbon (or whatever you call the fancy upholstery stuff). Here it is, finished, with the pillow that matches her crib set:
Here's our reading and rocker corner. At my first shower, everyone brought books instead of cards which was GENIUS! She has a fabulous book collection, and Cory has already started practicing reading some of the books. We used Glidden's smooth stone interior paint for the wall color in the whole room. The frame on the wall came from Ikea, but we spray painted it because black was not going to work in this room at all. The books are held in spice racks from Ikea that were spray painted.
On the shelf are some shoes, a picture frame from Grandma Peters, and the Tooth Fairy pillow I've had since I was a little girl. Sophie the giraffe is also tucked in there behind the pillow. The little "It's a Girl" button in front of the frame is from when I was born.
Her changing station is probably my favorite part of her room. The dress on the left is from my Godmother. The subway sign is from "My Sweet Prints" on Etsy. I don't remember where I saw this, but I absolutely love it. The bar with the cups and wire hanger for diapers is from Ikea. We don't have a lot of floor space, so I had to use wall space when I could. The changing table is from Target, and the wipe warmer has received lots of hype.
The elephant is also a gift from my Godmother. We named her Ellie, and she's super soft.
This diaper caddy was a gift and is super awesome! There are diapers, a changing pad, wipes, diaper cream, and baby powder in it. We will probably leave this in the "man cave" on the other side of the house.
Payton's closet is washed, folded/rolled, organized, and fully-stocked. Well, I think it's fully stocked. The closet organizer is from Babies 'R Us, and it's full of swaddle blankets, crib sheets, changing table covers, protective pads, receiving blankets, towels, wash cloths, burp cloths, and pac-n-play sheets. Underneath is a basket full of baby toiletries like wipes, nail clippers, and shampoo. We stacked up all of her newborn diapers (we hope she likes Huggies) in the closet and put the size 1s and 2s in the garage for now. Her dresses are sorted by size, and all of the cards she received (and the cards I received for mother's day) are in the adorable boxes on the shelf. We put a blanket made by my aunt on the shelf, as well as some of her bath toys that she'll love later on. The diaper bag is from "CoralTree" on Etsy, and is just big enough to hold all of my stuff.
We also got her crib from Target. My brother helped me put it together one day while Cory was at work because the changing table took us for-ev-er. The letter "P" is from "gracegraffiti" on Etsy. I absolutely love Etsy. I also super love the bedding, which was a gift from my parents. I found it on Layla Grace, and it's absolutely perfect. We have her Sleep Sheep, a lamb pillow, and a sheep stuffed animal in her crib now, but we'll have to pull them out once she starts sleeping in there. Those adorable angels on the wall are from my room, and they were also in my mom's room. You put them by the door, and they are supposed to keep out evil spirits.
It's hard to see in this picture, but the sheets say "I love Mommy. Mommy loves me. I love Daddy. Daddy loves me." Could they BE any more perfect?! The sheets, changing pad cover, blanket, dress, and Ellie are the perfect amount of pink (I didn't want the room to be swimming in pink).
Payton's Auntie, Ashley, gave her this "P" that is just perfect on the outside of her door. Her room is right next to ours, and we all know how much I LOVE anything with letters. I'm hoping to put a few family pictures in the hallway as well. You know, in all of the spare time I'm about to have...yeah.
Payton's room is the perfect amount of new and old. There are pieces in here that brought me lots of comfort and joy, and things that are all her own. We have the best best best friends and family that truly showered us with gifts. Most of the things we have for her were gifts, so her room is already filled with love. The only thing missing is her! How far along: 38 weeks 5 days down
Countdown: any day now!
Baby's Approximate Size: she's about the size of a watermelon (21 in, 7 pounds)
Total Weight Gain: I have no idea...but most of it is probably water weight. My legs are swollen up to my knees, and my hands are so swollen that it's impossible to make a fist.
Sleep: I sleep pretty well, minus the several trips to the bathroom. It's extremely difficult to get out of our very high bed, and even harder to get back in. I only wake up if I have to use the restroom or if I go numb.
Best moment this week: The best moment this week was finishing her nursery!
Meltdown this week: My last meltdown was in response to something Cory said that I didn't think was very nice. He insists that I took it the wrong way, and I just might have. Men should just stop talking sometimes.
Movement: She is definitely running out of room in there. She kicks her feet around under my ribs, and had the hiccups at least once a day. I was born with the hiccups, and I guess that she will be, too. Her favorite thing to do is prop her legs/knees right up under my ribs so that I can't bend over at all. She is head down and ready for an easy delivery!
Cravings: I pretty much just like food. And I can't get enough water. Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope! I can finally eat apples again.
Labor Signs: As of last Tuesday, I was 1cm dilated and 70% effaced, so I'll be curious to see where we are tomorrow. I'm still having Braxton-Hicks contractions, and I had a big one on the NST monitor last week. So far, they don't hurt at all. I had some cramping earlier this evening, but that all went away.
Symptoms: Swelling, carpel tunnel, swelling, joint pain in my hips and knees, foot cramps, swelling, backaches, and swelling. Oh, and some swelling as well.
Belly Button in or out: Half and half.
Wedding Rings on or off: Off, sadly. I can't even wear the single band that I got for swollen fingers.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy because I'm ready. Really ready.
Looking forward to: I'm so excited to FINALLY see what she looks like! She was uncooperative for both 4D ultrasounds, so we really have no idea. I can't wait to hold her. I can't wait to sleep on my stomach. I can't wait to see foot and ankle bones. I can't wait to wear my rings. I can't wait to have some sangria. Did I mention that I can't wait to hold her?!
For the past week or so, I have apparently been nesting. I've heard about people cleaning like crazy, but I haven't been doing that a whole lot, so I figured it just wasn't going to affect me. I was telling the teacher I work with on Fridays about some projects that I've been working on, and they all said at the same time, "Oh, you're totally nesting." I can't tell you when it started, but I'm pretty sure it started with Pinterest. I started pinning all things compiled in notebooks with dividers, and I got really into classroom organization. I looked at all of my teacher pins for reading, and I've been working on ideas for tracking student progress and organizing guided reading materials. The only way I can describe it is feeling horny for organization. If I'm horny for organization, then file folders/labels/post-its are like my porn and three-hole punching/sorting/labeling/consolidating is like masturbation. I know, it's not a pretty reference, but it's the only analogy that seems to fit. I was able to put down the binders and papers for the weekend, and I plowed my way through some of the piles around the house. My mom came to stay with me for the weekend since Cory was out of town, and we accomplished a LOT together. It was all worthwhile too when Cory came home, didn't even notice, and then threw all of his stuff from the weekend all over the livingroom...
How far along: 32 weeks, 5 days down
Countdown: 7 weeks, 2 days left to go! (even though I'm pretty sure she will be here before that)
Baby's Approximate Size: she's as big as a honeydew (19 in, 4.5 pounds)
Total Weight Gain: I couldn't tell you...I now face away from the scale at the doctor's office
Sleep: I sleep without any major problems. However, rolling over in the middle of the night is a VERY uncomfortable task, and getting out of bed to pee is the worst.
Best moment this week: I've had lots of great moments, but the best one so far was today at Starbucks. I've been downing so much water and juice that I decided to mix it up with some iced tea. As I was waiting in line for my drink, this woman came up behind me, tapped me on the shoulder, and said that I looked great from behind and that she couldn't believe I was pregnant. Pretty much everyone tells you that you look great when you're pregnant because that's just code. This woman kept going on and on about how she wished she looked like me when she was pregnant, but she was sincere, and had the biggest heart. She didn't seem to get up for any reason other than to tell me that, and it truly made my day. When you feel fat and swollen and like your face is starting to swallow itself, it's nice to be told that you don't look that way. I've had so many people tell me how worried they are about me lately that it's nice to have someone (even a complete stranger) tell you that you're doing just fine. It means a lot to those of us who haven't had the easiest pregnancy and don't think it's all of this rainbows-and-butterflies shit that everyone talks about. I fear going back to that Starbucks because I'd hate to walk in and be disappointed that she's not there. I also had a FABULOUS shower last weekend that I'll post pictures of when I get the digital files. Meltdown this week: I got some pretty scary news last week at my doctor's appointment, so I'm under close watch this week. It was the first appointment that I was supposed to go to by myself, but I obviously called Cory and he was there within a few minutes. I waited until I got home to have my meltdown so that I could have the ugly cry in the privacy of my own home.
Movement: Baby girl is VERY busy in there. Every now and again, I feel her doing these little, rhythmic movements on the lower left side of my belly. I thought that she was just practicing her rhythm and dance moves, but it occurred to me today that that's where her ribs are, and she's hiccuping. In fact, she's doing it again right now. Poor thing...I get them all the time, and they are loud and obnoxious. I guess she gets that from me. For the past 2 weeks or so, I've felt a lot more movement; probably because she's running out of room in there. At out 4D ultrasound, I got to watch her moving around and I was surprised to know that what feels like BIG movements are actually pretty small. I can't imagine what it's going to feel like in another month. It's fun to watch her rolly-polley around in there.
Cravings: I still love anything lemon, and I've been pretty successful at replacing lemon bars with lemon yogurt. I can't get enough water, and I'm still loving any kind of tart-ish juice (mango lemonade, orange juice, etc).
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not anymore.
Labor Signs: No labor signs yet, but she's sitting pretty low, and the pressure makes me feel like I get kicked in the pelvic bone everyday.
Symptoms: Wait for it...foot pain, foot swelling, kankles/disappearing ankle bones, high-ish blood pressure, hip pain, pelvic pain, back aches, and the inability to sit up or get up quickly. I'm also starting to feel more Braxton-Hicks.
Belly Button in or out: It's still in, but one little part of it is kinda out. It just looks gross.
Wedding Rings on or off: I can still wear my wedding band, but my engagement ring doesn't fit anymore, so I borrowed another band from Pops. I'm hoping to go find some other bands that I can wear in the meantime because I feel naked without them anymore.
Happy or Moody most of the time: It depends on the day and what I've eaten.
Looking forward to: Having the nursery completed and everything ready to go. For the nursery, we just need a mattress, something to store her toys in, crib sheets, a changing pad, changing pad covers, and some sheet protectors. I also need to finish putting up her bookshelves and picture frames (as soon as they're ready). After my shower on the 30th, I hope to head to Babies-R-Us to order all of the other stuff we need before she gets here so that if she comes early, we're ready (monitor, sleep nest, stroller, car seat, etc). Most of all, I'm looking forward to meeting out sweet baby girl! Here are a few we're-not-quite-finished-yet shots of the nursery:
What I miss the most: I still miss sleeping on my stomach. I miss running and being able to work out so hard that you get a really good sweat going. I also miss having the energy to run around and do everything that needs to get done. I miss wine and sangria, and I can't wait until I can fit back into all of my old clothes!
Yes, it's true. The Peters family was under attack today. Here's a picture of the crime scene, our kitchen window (this picture was taken AFTER the crime scene was cleared, so no evidence or blood stains remain):
Here's a picture of the weapon (it's wet because we watered down the evidence):
Here's a picture of the back-up weapons that we had on hand...you know, just in case:
Everyone knows how DEATHLY afraid of bees, wasps, hornets, etc. I am. As I was sitting at the kitchen table, minding my own business, I saw something out of the corner of my eye. I figured it was just a moth or something that came in to say during our party Saturday afternoon and got stuck. My heart stopped for a minute when I realized that it was a WASP and not a moth. Wasps can sting you more than once, which makes them even worse. And unlike spiders that can's really move that quickly, anything that flies CAN and that is teeeeeerrifying to me. After I screamed like a little girl, and ran to the other side of the room to grab spray and a towel, I realized that I couldn't just leave it there...I had to WATCH it so that I would know where it was at all times. I mustered up enough courage to get my phone from the table, and I did what any normal, sane person would do.
I called Cory. Isn't that why people get married?! I guess not; Selena used to handle all of that stuff before. I guess every relationship has a designated person to handle such crises.
Anyhow...Cory rushed home from work 15 minutes before a work meeting to be my knight in shining armor. He realized that the jet stream of the spray would not allow him to remain at a safe/comfortable distance away from the victim, so he opted to use the broom for blunt force trauma. He looked at me, looked at the wasp, said, "This is a one-shot deal and I can't miss." Then he gave me nugs (is that what you call a high-five but with your knuckles?). He took a deep breathe, rammed that thing as hard as he could, and I started laughing uncontrollably. Here he is, 6'2 (I think) with broad shoulders, and he's launching this broom in a harpoon-style motion (like they do on Wicked Tuna) at an insect that isn't much bigger than his thumb. I'm laughing and cheering, and he's yelling at me because it isn't dead yet and here-to-fore isn't time to celebrate the homicide. He wouldn't let me take a video or a picture, but I wish I had done it anyway because it was awesome!
"I wonder how it got in," he says to me, "because we haven't had any doors open since the parts on Saturday." OMG, it's been in our house since SATURDAY?! I've been cohabiting with this thing since SATURDAY?! You've got to be kidding me. Then he tells me not to worry since it could have just come from a nest in the house. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!
I watched a scary movie about bees invading a house on some cable channel when I was in 4th grade (cleverly titled "Attack of the Bees" or something like that), and then saw news reports the following week that said we were being invaded by Africanized honey bees in Southern California. I made my mom order the pamphlet of information, I wrote a report on it, I was forced to go to the Santa Ana Zoo a few months later that was INFESTED with bees, and I just haven't been the same ever since.
I. HATE. FLYING. INSECTS. THAT. STING.
I eventually made it to the grocery store and rewarded myself with my favorites:
To end today on a positive note, I brought some mango lemonade with me to work.
My biggest accomplishment of the day so far: packing the EXACT right proportion of apple slices and peanut butter.
Cory got his first present for baby girl at work today:
What should her first song be? So far, we've received suggestions for "Isn't she lovely," "Baby Got Back," and "Lady Humps."
How far along: 21 weeks down
Countdown: 19 weeks to go!
Baby's Approximate Size: she's as long as a banana (7 in, 11 oz)
Total Weight Gain: 5 pounds (only one pound since 2/7...yipee!) Sleep: I'm definitely not the narcoleptic I was during the first trimester, but once I sit down, it's really hard for me to get back up. I've had lots more energy lately, so it's nice to know that life basics (like showering and blowdrying my hair) don't seem like such marathon events anymore. I have no problem falling asleep, and I'm usually up, wide awake, by 7 every morning. Best moment this week: The best moment this week was OBVIOUSLY getting married. Since the day we started dating, Cory and I have talked about getting married and having kids. We didn't think it would happen so fast, but everything seems to be happening the way it was supposed to, which is so awesome. Meltdown this week: Cory didn't like something that I registered for, and he made that loud and clear. Melt. Doooooown. When I flip the switch, I can't stop myself, and then I start thinking about all of the things that are bothering me, and it gets out of hand. I'm better now... Movement: She moves mostly after I eat, or when I'm sitting down at work doing something that involves a lot of thought. I think she likes the left side more, but I'm not sure why. Cravings: This week, I can't get enough macaroni salad from Ralphs. It has nasty olives in it, so I just pick them out. I also still can't seem to drink enough milk.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Baby girl does NOT like apples. I get it. I tried to have some applesauce yesterday, but I couldn't get that past her. I'll try again today. Labor Signs: Nada. Symptoms: I've been congestion free for about a week, but I slowly feel it coming back today. I've started getting headaches, too. A children't Tylenol works pretty well for that. Belly Button in or out: It's still in, but it seems to be getting bigger. Wedding Rings on or off: On, duh. I love them together! And I can't wait until I get another diamond band as a "push" present! Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy, especially after I eat. Looking forward to: I'm so excited to FINALLY start thinking about baby things. We tried to delay it until after the wedding, but my mom and I got a little ahead of ourselves when we found out we were having a girl. So far, she has a sleep sheep, a "shhh, baby is sleeping" sign, a tutu (the cutest one EVER), a sun hat, a pair of shoes, her first outfit that we bought her, and my old tooth fairy pillow. I can't WAIT to pick out all of her bedding!
What I miss the most: I really miss sleeping on my stomach. I have the pregnancy pillow that Cory's parents got me for my birthday, and I might sleep with that for the rest of my life! (Sorry, Cory)
One of the best things about getting married has been registering for all of the stuff I've always wanted to have. There's an amazing feeling that comes with making a home, and I love having all of this awesome stuff. One of my favorite has been monogrammed EVERYTHING! Cory's parents got us some monogrammed towels and our monogrammed duvet cover, my parents got us all kinds of awesome electronics (I can't wait to make homemade bread), and I have Martha's dream kitchen. I could write paragraphs about each and every gift we received (I know you all know that), so I'll spare everyone and get to my latest favorite. We registered for all new baking sheets, and while Cory stepped away for 3 minutes at Macy's, I snuck in this fine gem right here:
EVERYONE needs this silpat! I've made the Neiman Marcus chocolate chip cookie recipe for YEARS since my dad bought me the cookbook while I was living up north, and never ever, not even once, have they EVER turned out this chewy and delicious. It's no wonder that bitch has her own everything...she has all the best tools!
If you received some kind of variation of the following on your thank you note from "us" (I use the term "us" loosely), I really, truly meant it:
we're making a house a home
I finally have all of the tools to make stuff just like mom
this was one of my favorite things to register for
I've always dreamed of having this
I feel like such an adult
As cliche as they all sound, I will be on a registry high for at least a year. Yes, I think of Jena and Selena every time I see our wine buckets, Anna when I walk by our coffee condiment set, the Peters family when we use our Keurig machine, and so many of you throughout the day (again, I'll spare you the list). What a year to make writing thank you notes my New Years resolution!
Our home is filled with adult things from the people we love. Take THAT, Martha!