February 28, 2010

for cat or baby?

I swear I bought a pack n' play today for the little girl in my tummy. Apparently I was confused though, it seems I bought a pack n' play for my cats.

Soph hasn't come out of there pretty much all evening...

Oh and Max thinks Ryann's toys are his toys. I turned around for a minute and he stole a teddy bear out her closet and ran under the crib. I'm not sure what is going to be more difficult, taking care of a newborn, or keeping the cats away from her stuff.

February 27, 2010

bump check: 34 weeks

Semi scary realization I shared with Chris earlier? I will be full term in three weeks. As in, 21 days. As in there is a real possibility that I could have my baby in THREE WEEKS. Holy cow, holy cow, holy cow. I still just can't grasp it. Personally, I think she is coming late, so I could have up to seven weeks left or so, but we shall see. For some reason, Chris has decided she is going to be born on April 4th (he thinks 4-4-10 is a good birthday). My mom's due date with both my sister and I was April 15th, so I'm thinking that will be when my little girl decides to come. What's your guess? Chris was born a couple weeks early and I was born two weeks late, so maybe she will do me a favor and come on her due date :o).

This week Ryann should be around 4.75 pounds, and about 18 inches long. Basically babycenter.com just says she is still getting bigger and working on maturing her lungs and her nervous system. Nothing too crazy and exciting to report.

Good news, at my follow up appointment this week (to my slightly high blood pressure and protein in the urine from last week) my numbers looked much better. Most likely it was just me being sick that cause a bad week. I will go in again on Tuesday for an already scheduled appointment so we will find out for sure how things are going, but both Ryann and I seem to be doing well!

Today was a busy day... this morning Chris and I were up bright and early to go to the hospital to pre-register. We filled out all the paper work and what not that needs to be done before labor, so when d-day actually comes we can just show up to labor and delivery and get a room. A lot of the information was a little overwhelming, but I feel much more prepared for the birth. At least we know where we are supposed to go when we get to the hospital! We also got a brief tour to see both the L&D rooms, and the Mother/Baby rooms. It may not be the Ritz, but it definitely seems like we picked a good hospital.

After that Kenzie, Jackie and I headed out for some massages and pedicures, thanks to a very generous Christmas present from one of the families who attends our school. It was absolutely wonderful. I have never gotten a regular massage, let alone a maternity massage so I wasn't exactly sure what to expect. I was given the massage laying on my side, all snuggled up with a bunch of pillows, and halfway through I flipped over. I was in heaven! The pedicure was wonderful too, except the fact that I have incredibly ticklish feet. I am incredibly happy that my toes look nice even though I can barely reach my feet.

How far along: 34 weeks
Total weight gain/loss: +18 pounds (crap what happened this week?)
Maternity clothes: obviously
Stretch marks?: not that I can see
Sleep: eh, not so hot this week
Best moment this week: my massage :o)
Movement: lots of rolling
Food cravings: nothing really
Gender: girl
What I miss: margaritas
Milestones: just another week down

February 24, 2010

soy garlic chicken

Last night for dinner Chris and I tried a slow cooker recipe from Taste of Home's Simple and Delicious magazine. The chicken came out incredibly tender, and it wasn't bad, but we weren't wowed. That is the one reason I don't like using recipes that aren't from allrecipes.com... you can't see reviews from other people. If anyone has any thoughts on how to spice this up or get more flavor in the recipe let me know!

6 chicken leg quarters, skin removed
1 can (8oz) tomato sauce
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp. minced garlic

1. With a sharp knife, cut leg quarters at the joints if desired. Place in a 4-at. slow cooker. In a small bowl, combine the tomato sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar and garlic; pour over chicken.
2. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted into the chicken reads 180 degrees.

For the broccoli all I did was steam it in the microwave (what can I say, I'm lazy). 2 tablespoons of water in a covered dish with the broccoli, microwave for 4 minutes, top with some Italian dressing and serve. Super easy way to get some veggies in!

Hope you enjoy!

February 22, 2010

a baby shower

Like I mentioned, this past Saturday my lovely friends threw me an amazing baby shower. The party was held at the Signs of Life Gallery in Lawrence. Such a fun venue, you got that urban loft type feel. Here are some photos from the shower.

The banner is a little hard to see because of the light coming in from the windows, but it says 'Welcome Ryann'. I want to hang it up in the nursery for awhile, but I need to figure out where and how... It looked great Meaghan!

The punch was just cranberry juice and lemonade, no fizziness included. Just the way I like it! :o)

Whitney put together this adorable little clothesline. I am in love with the little white dress.

My sister made this poster that guests had to fill out. It says "Who will Ryann look like?" Guests then picked a feature that Ryann would receive from me, and one that she would receive from Chris. Sounds like people think she will get my nose and blue eyes, and Chris's dimples and blonde hair. I hope they are right! Oh and Whitney says she will be getting my booty :o). Poor girl...

Isn't that diaper cake adorable? Thanks Em!

Meaghan and Berk had to help me with some of the unwrapping :o). It was tough work!

The lovely ladies who put together the shower... thank you Lorin, Whitney, Katelynn, Meaghan and Kelsey!! I had such a great time, and everything looked amazing.

And a few Chi-O's for good measure. Thanks for coming girls!

February 21, 2010

and she will be called

I figured it was about time I share with all of you who may not know yet, our baby girl does actually have a name. She has had it for quite some time now, but I just hadn't found a cute way to present it on the blog. (I'm pretty sure only I would be dorky enough to need something to show when discussing a name) We have chosen to name our daughter...

Ryann Elizabeth

Her first name will be pronounced Ryan, even though many people will think that the name is actually Ry-Ann. I am well aware of this fact and I know she will spend a good deal of time correcting people. Why would I do that to my daughter you ask? Well first of all, its my kid, I can do what I want. :o) Secondly, when her name comes up on a school roster, we are hoping that they assume she is female. And my third reason has a little bit to do with where the name came from...

When I was a senior in college I worked at a preschool on campus. I was with the two and three year olds, and in my class was an adorable little girl named Ryann. She was seriously the sweetest, cutest, and most stylish two year old I had ever seen. She made me fall in love with the name. Chris and I went through the name books, and considered several other options, but we just kept coming back to Ryann. It seemed to fit - not just your typical girls name, not over the top, it was just right.

As far the middle name, Elizabeth is also my sister's middle name. Whether we had a boy or girl, and no matter what first name we decided on, I wanted the middle name to link back to a family member. Auntie Lorin may have a few traits that we hope Ryann doesn't pick up :o), but Elizabeth is a wonderful middle name and I am glad they will share it.

The necklace pictured above was given to me yesterday at my shower by my best friend Meaghan. It is beautiful and I am so happy to have it. Meaghan ordered the necklace from etsy seller Cristina Ashley Designs.

February 20, 2010

bump check: 33 weeks

My swollen ankles and I have made it to 33 weeks! Along with my aching hips and my itchy skin. Fun fun fun :o). Ok its not THAT bad, but things are slowly but surely starting to add up.

This week our pretty little girl is weighing in around 4 pounds, and has most likely hit the 17 inch mark. She is rapidly losing that wrinkled, alien look and her skeleton is hardening. The bones in her skull aren't fused together, which allows them to slightly overlap during birth. They won't fuse entirely until early adulthood, so they can grow as her brain and other tissues expand during infancy and childhood.

I had a doctors appointment this week. Baby girl seems to be doing just fine, but me on the other hand were aren't quite as sure about. Nothing too scary yet, but my blood pressure is still above my baseline, and there was some protein in my urine, so... I earned myself a trip back to the doctors office next week. If the protein is gone then they will just chalk the elevated blood pressure up to the fact that hello, I'm 33 weeks pregnant. Of course things aren't going to be perfectly normal. But we shall see, wish me luck!

We have been blessed with lots of baby gifts lately. On Friday I received an adorable polka-dot dress from Toni and her mom, then on Tuesday our car seat and stroller arrived from my mother, as well as one of my favorite books, The Three Little Jayhawks. Thanks Laura! Wednesday the parents of one of my toddlers in my class brought me some adorable outfits from Baby Gap, and there was a toy in the mail from Christine when I got home. And today not only did I find a cute little blanket in the mail from Sarah, but it was also my baby shower. Lets just say this little girl is very well loved, and now has tons of toys, clothes, books and diapers among other things. More on the baby shower tomorrow, but here is a sneak peak. My mom spent hours Martha Stewarting it up!

How far along: 33 weeks
Total weight gain/loss: +15 pounds
Maternity clothes: absolutely
Stretch marks?: Chris says nope :o)
Sleep: please tell me why I'm awake at 5 am all the time...
Best moment this week: the baby shower!
Movement: she has been kind of lazy this week, but rolling around
Food cravings: OJ isn't technically a food, but I've had a ton this week
Gender: girl
What I miss: not being winded after doing basic activities
Milestones: another week down

February 18, 2010

happy 101 award

Thanks to both Amy over at The Mistress of Oxford, and Mandee at The Bear Naked Truth for passing the Happy 101 award my way. When I started this blog it was mainly a place to account for my life's happenings, and allow friends and family to follow the hubbs and I as we updated our first home. I can't believe how much fun I am having now in the blog world, and I only hope more people will enjoy reading the random and sometimes ridiculous things I have to say!

So onto 10 things that make me jump for joy and 10 blogs that tickle my fancy...

1. the hubbs, of course

I honestly have no idea what I would do without this guy in my life. We have been together since I was 15. He knows more about me and my little quirks, and understands me in ways no one else ever will. And he puts up with all my crap. Anyone who can handle me for that much time must be a really good person :o).

2. the baby in my belly

It amazes me how much I can love something I still have yet to grasp and understand. I know I'm pregnant. I know there is a baby in my belly. But I seriously can't believe that in less than two months I will be a mother, the caretaker for another tiny precious little life. I can't believe a little human being is going to come out of my body. For now I just stare at my belly as it wiggles around in amazement (ok and sometimes with a little irritation when a body part gets seriously lodged in my ribs, or makes me have to pee).

3. my fur babies

Something that I enjoy weekly, is the Sunday morning snuggle with my cats. Chris and I seriously hit the jackpot with the two little kittens that entered our life over a year ago. They are the funniest, most loving cats I have ever had. For the past year I truly have felt like they were my kids, and I hope it doesn't make them seriously depressed when their baby sister enters the world.

4. my family and friends

Chris likes to tell me we should move to Florida, seeing as I hate cold weather and he hates his allergies (and they magically went away when we went to Florida). I told him I'm game if he can convince my parents and some of my friends to move there too. I don't know what I'd do with out them.

5. the beach

There is almost nothing better than dozing on a lounge chair on the sand, with the sun on your face and the sound of the ocean in your ears. Anyone up for a vacation right now?

6. letterpress

I'm a bit of a design geek, both interior and graphic, but an art that really drives me wild is letterpress. If I could own a press (and not have to do all the cleaning and maintaining it) I most definitely would.

7. raspberry hot chocolate

Let's be honest, I pretty much hate coffee. So anytime someone wants to go to Starbucks, I generally get some hot chocolate. But the absolute best way to do hot chocolate? Raspberry hot chocolate. Try it sometime, you just might love it.

8. home decorating and renovation
Obviously right? If only I had more money so I could buy more things and take on more projects... oh yeah and it would be nice if I didn't have to worry about pricing our house out of the neighborhood. Sigh...

9. wedding planning
For those of you who don't know, I'm working on building up an invitation design business. I figured it was the best way for me to happily put my graphic design skills to work. But in reality I love all the little details that go into a wedding. Luckily my best friend just got engaged, so I will get to play wedding planner a little bit more :o).

10. margaritas

Within 48 hours of this kid popping out, I really think I might need one. Just one. I seriously miss my margaritas. Some chicks enjoy a bottle of wine on a Friday night after a long week. Me I could use a bag of chips and a nice cold marg.

And here are 10 blogs that I truly enjoy:
1. All Things G&D
2. Centsational Girl
3. Enjoying the Small Things
4. Fly Through Our Window
5. Good Food, Good Friends, Good Life
6. Heir to Blair
7. Life in the Fun Lane
8. My Two Red Shoes
9. Working Woman's Guide to Domestic Success
10. You Paid More Than Me

I know some of these lovely ladies have already received the award, but I love their blogs so I had to share!

February 16, 2010

annie's amazing art

For all of you crazy crafters and art DIYers out there, this is something you just might have to try. My friend Annie, of Anne Pendleton Photography showcased some of her crafting skills on her blog recently. I think the results are amazing!

She gives a little tutorial on her blog about the process, so if you want to give it a whirl, definitely pop over to her blog for the instructions. Another project that yet again, I'm not sure I'm brave enough to try!

Nice work Annie, very nice :o).

i was featured!!

I feel a bit like a celebrity! This weekend I was asked if my nursery stenciling could be featured on Stephanie's blog, You Paid More Than Me. Of course I said yes. I have never been featured on another blog before, so I'm pretty excited. You should definitely head on over to her blog and see all of the other amazing things she posts about. Pretty good stuff!

February 14, 2010

nursery progress

My nursery is no longer an empty room!! Our furniture was delivered yesterday, and my mom was kind enough to bring the bedding and the pillow she made up today. I'm in love...

The nursery got small really fast, and I have yet to figure out a good angle to see the bedding. I'll figure that out when the room is completely finished.

We changed out the knobs that came on the dresser, for some with a little more sparkle. I wanted some knobs from Antrhopologie, but at $10 a pop and 12 knobs, I thought that was a bit ridiculous. I found these babies at Hobby Lobby, originally $5.99 each, on sale for 50% off. Much better on the wallet and I still think they look great.

And because I think he is adorable, here are a couple shots of my crib assembly man :o). He is definitely going to kill me for the second one, but hey, it is completely necessary.

Next on my nursery to do list? Figuring out what the heck I want to put on the walls!! We are also looking for a little nightstand/bookshelf thing to put next to the chair.

Hope you like the look so far!

February 13, 2010

bump check: 32 weeks

Hobby Lobby Cashier (HLC): What are you having?
Me: A girl (smiles politely)
HLC: When is she due?
Me: April 10th, hopefully 8 weeks or less to go.
HLC: Oh thats ni.. wait really? You're tiny!

I'm glad I don't look like a whale, but I definitely feel like one. So all of you out there who think this belly is tiny, I don't want to hear it. There is a reason Chris likes to call me a turtle, the belly is most definitely restricting all movement.

Baby girl is around 3.75 pounds and about 16.7 inches long (I'm sorry babycenter.com but 16.7 doesn't really sound like an estimate number...). From the pound or so I'm gaining a week, our little girl is gaining about half of it. In fact, she'll gain a third to half of her birth weight during the next seven weeks as she fattens up for survival outside the womb. She now has toenails, fingernails, and real hair (or at least respectable peach fuzz). Her skin is becoming soft and smooth as she plumps up in preparation for birth.

I wouldn't say this has been my best week... it was a pretty rough one at work, which caused me some serious hip and back pain. And to top it all off I've been fighting some sort of stomach bug since Thursday evening. Let me tell you, it is so much fun!

The best part of this week though? Our nursery furniture arrived today!! I promise I'll post some pictures tomorrow... my mom is bringing up the bedding she made so I want to wait until it is all prettied up :o). Our nursery's small size is definitely apparent now with all of the furniture in there, and I'm still debating the rug, but you can help me decide tomorrow what you think. Overall I'm still really excited, and am loving putting the nursery together.

On Friday Chris's friends at school surprised him with a little baby shower of his own. Thanks to my being ill, I didn't get to go and partake in the festivities, but I thought it was very sweet of them to do something for him!! An adorable set of handmade booties, mittens and a hat made it home with Christopher, and I am in love with them. Thanks Carrie!

How far along: 32 weeks
Total weight gain/loss: +14 pounds (eh, just wait till I get my appetite back)
Maternity clothes: I just got some new shirts from Gap and Old Navy
Stretch marks?: still nothing!
Sleep: its been good and bad
Best moment this week: getting the nursery furniture
Movement: this girl is getting strong!
Food cravings: nothing really this week
Gender: girl
What I miss: being comfortable
Milestones: getting to month number 8!

February 11, 2010

up or down?

This is a very random question, and probably rather uninteresting. But I need to know where you stand. When not in use, is the lid (not the seat) on your toilet up or down?

In our house, the lid on the toilet absolutely has to stay down. You can ask Chris about the time that he had to bathe a pee covered cat... But in reality, I can't remember ever leaving the toilet lid up. I mean really, why would the put a lid on the toilet if you weren't going to use it? Do you enjoy looking at the water in the bowl?

Funny thing is, pretty much anytime we have company over, when I go into the bathroom after someone else, the lid is up. So that is why I ask, do you leave the lid up or down?

February 8, 2010

shrimp stir-fry

On Friday we tried this recipe from allrecipes.com for shrimp stir-fry. Overall it was pretty good.

We made a few changes to our recipe... I never use frozen vegetables in my dishes. I just don't like them. So we added mushrooms, broccoli and a bell pepper. We were also going to add water chestnuts but forgot we had them. Some of the reviews of the recipe said that it was bland (which it pretty much was) so from the start we doubled the amount of sesame oil and added a tiny bit of worcestershire sauce. Next time we will probably add more worcestershire sauce, and try and figure out something else to add a bit more flavor.


February 6, 2010

bump check: 31 weeks

Woot!!! We are down to single digit weeks left! And some of the girls so kindly reminded me that if she comes early, she could possibly come next month. That is insane. But amazing. I really can't wait to meet my little girl.

This week has been slightly rough on the pain front. After painting last weekend my right hip has been really bothering me. Over the week I've been having to take some tylenol and just go to sleep at like 9:00 because the pain is just too much to handle. Chris has to help me off of couches, and sometimes out of the bed when I need to pee in the middle of the night. Hopefully it eases up soon, or these last 9 weeks are so are going to be pretty rough.

This week baby girl is over 16 inches long and weighs around 3.3 pounds. Eek, supposedly she is heading for a growth spurt! She can turn her head from side to sdie, and her arms, legs and body are beginning to plump out as needed fat accumulates underneath her skin. Her movement is as strong as ever.

Good news? Today our little girl cooperated for the 3D ultrasound. We got a couple of really cute pictures, and confirmed that she is indeed still a girl :o). That part was rather important to me considering how much pink is already in her wardrobe and how girly the nursery is going to be.

Here is our little baby looking very peaceful just hanging out in my belly. My mom thinks she looks like me... I definitely see my chubby cheeks, but right now I mostly just see a cute little baby.

We got to watch her yawn really big a few times. It was adorable.

And here is some proof that living quarters are a little tight. You can see her forehead and nose on the left with her arms all scrunched up in there. Her feet were actually up close to her head for a while too. Just a cozy little home! :o)

Three weeks ago when we first attempted the 3D ultrasound, baby girl was head down facing my spine. Today she was transverse, with her head on the left side of my body (and all of her limbs apparently :o) and her bum on my right. I'm glad she turned so we could get some good pictures, but she better get herself back to head down over the next few weeks!

How far along: 31 weeks
Total weight gain/loss: +16 pounds
Maternity clothes: umm yes
Stretch marks?: not that I can find
Sleep: I slept through the night twice this week!!
Best moment this week: seeing our precious little girl
Movement: some days she is a nut
Food cravings: strawberry pop tarts (thanks Kenzie :o)
Gender: still a girl!! ha ha
What I miss: a day without some sort of pain
Milestones: single digit weeks left!!

February 5, 2010

rug drama

So originally we ordered this rug from Home Decorators for the nursery...

When it arrived, it wasn't quite the color I was expecting, plus it was a little thin and kind of scratchy. I would have liked it in another potion of the house (I think) but it just wasn't right for a nursery. So then we moved onto this fun rug from Anthropologie, and it arrived yesterday.

The picture makes it a little hard to see but the grays don't quite match. The rug almost has a blueish lavender tint, and our walls don't. I'm wondering if I when the furniture gets in there, you won't notice the gray difference, but overall how do you feel about the rug?

Here is the 'mood board' I had created for the nursery, so you can see we are planning to pull the yellow and other colors in through the chair and fabrics. Because of that I think I want a neutral rug, either gray or white, but is the one I have the right one? Or do you have a better suggestion?

If only I could find a rug in a store that I liked... so I could stop paying shipping fees!!!!

February 4, 2010

banana bread

There are two things that I bake the most in our house... the first is brownies, the second, chocolate chip banana bread. This is my mom's recipe, I just added the chocolate chips :o).

1 cup crisco
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cold water
3 ripe bananas
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
a pinch of salt
3/4 cup chocolate chips (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix together crisco and sugar. Then add in the eggs and water. Add in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut up bananas and mix in. Stir in chocolate chips if desired.
3. Put in a greased 9 x 5 laof pan and bake for approximately one hour. Check with a toothpick or skewer to see if bread is done.

I believe my mom splits her dough into two smaller loaf pans, but all I have are the big ones.


February 1, 2010

i heart chevron

Here is yet another project I think I want to attempt:

For some reason I am in love with chevron patterns, so when I saw this DIY art made by Jess over at Make Under My Life, I started to go weak at the knees. I might possibly attempt this for my dining room (I would use green paint), but the taping seems a little daunting. Not sure that I have that much patience!! We shall see...

cute, sorta...

So, these shoes are cute. They look adorable. But they sound like a squeak toy. Yes, the shoes squeak when walked on. Which is fun in theory, but I'm guessing the parents who purchased these weren't planning on hearing them for 8 hours out of the day.

I love this kid, and yes the shoes are fun. But please remember if you send your kid to preschool or daycare, their teachers are the ones who will be enjoying the squeaking ALL DAY LONG.