March 31, 2015

the saga continues

Was it just two weeks ago that I wrote about Elsie's ER visit?  And that I hoped we could keep our pediatrician adventures to well checks?  Haha.  Yeah right.

I'm pretty sure it was the day after I wrote that post that we noticed Elsie started wheezing again.  Not terrible, but she ended up needing a little albuterol to calm it down.  And as the week progressed she began to need the inhaler two to three times a day to keep the wheezing to a minimum.  She never seemed in real distress, no retractions or anything, but it was obvious that something wasn't quite right.  Our next best guess was that if she did have asthma, she was allergic to something and it wasn't allowing her lungs to heal and function properly.

I sent off a message to the pediatrician who agreed that allergy testing was a good next step, and she called in the orders.  Last Tuesday we had her blood drawn.  Let me just say Elsie has become a serious champ at this whole doctor thing.  She didn't really even bat an eye when we were getting her blood drawn, not a tear, didn't fight it at all.  And at every check-up we've gone to she has complied with all the doctor's requests without any issue.  So proud of her.

waiting for the blood draw

We thought we'd just wait for the allergy report, but by Thursday afternoon her breathing was the worst I'd heard it in over a week.  Again her attitude was great, she hadn't had any fevers or anything, she continued to eat and drink as normal, there was just this continuous wheeze and you could tell she was short of breath.  After I left Elsie in her crib for nap I called her doctor's office and asked if we should just continue with the albuterol as needed, or if there was something else I should be doing.  They said if she was truly wheezing they were concerned and I needed to bring her in.  And the only available appointment was in 35 minutes, naturally.  So I got Elsie back out of her crib, tried to calm a crying Ryann (she was pissed because her 'mommy Ryann time' was being interrupted, I can't blame her) and off we went.

We got all checked in and such, and taken back to a room in a relatively reasonable amount of time.  They check her oxygen level, and while it wasn't terrible, it was at 94%.  Definitely could be better.  We then waited quite a bit to see the doctor (not our regular pedi, she wasn't available that day).  But the next person who popped their head in was a med student.  I feel as though I can never say no when the request to do the exam, because Christopher has been there and how rude would I be if I said no?  She did her thing, was very nice, and then we waited again to see the doctor.

In the meantime I handed Ryann my phone and Elsie laid on the table and watched her play games.  E was facing away from me, but she turned her head just a bit and I noticed something on her face.  Then I realized it was blood.  Lovely, just lovely.  I sat her up and started dealing with the nose bleed.  I got it mostly calmed down just as the pedi came in, though Elsie was still freaking out a bit because there was blood on her hand and shirt.  The doctor began discussing all Elsie symptoms and issues with me, and naturally Elsie sneezed sending blood flying everywhere.  I'm not sure we could be having any more fun!

They had Elsie lab reports back, and while she didn't appear to have any seasonal allergies, she has a class three allergy to cats and a class two allergy to dogs.  Well, that could explain why the poor girl couldn't get better.  But the doctor wasn't convinced the allergies were the only issue and sent us off for a chest x-ray.  By this point it was like ten till 4.  I hadn't had the chance to eat lunch because my ultrasound had been in the morning and I planned to eat during nap time.  We were all tired and a little hungry, but the imaging center closed at 4:30 so no rest for the weary.

Again Elsie was a champ, walked straight back for her x-ray without me and didn't bat an eye.  When they came back out the ladies complimented how amazing she was and adorable and just kept gushing over her.  It was funny.  E managed to walk away with like 10 giant stickers, but the lack of a nap was getting to her and she became quite emotional.  Christopher had met us there, and I was hoping he could take Elsie home while I took Ryann to dance but E just wasn't having it.  She needed her mommy, so the three of us went to dance while Chris took on dinner duties.

For the record I hadn't planned on needing to drive straight to dance from all this, so poor Ryann wound up in class in a dress and leggings and her hair all in her face.  But at least I leave her shoes in the car so we had those.  Anyway, the doctor called me while we were there and said that Elsie appeared to have atypical pneumonia.  I certainly wasn't expecting that.  She called in a prescription to the pharmacy.  Chris wasn't 100% convinced by that diagnosis, but picked up the meds anyway.

Over the weekend we were at my parents house, and Elsie didn't need the albuterol at all.  She seemed to be doing much better, so we took that as the antibiotics were working and she was on the mend.  However just two hours after we got home Sunday afternoon Elsie was back to wheezing.  Not nearly as bad as she had been, but it was still there.  Well shoot.  After finding out she was allergic to cats we found ours a new home to live with, so they left Sunday night.  My mom and I spent the majority of the day yesterday vacuuming everything and running any curtains and blankets through the wash that we could.  I'm trying to schedule to have our carpets and upholstery cleaned.

I hope that getting all the pet dander out of the house will allow her to breathe better.  But in the mean time, we have yet another follow-up on Thursday with our regular pediatrician.  Woot woot.  Funny that at Elsie's two year appointment I said something to the affect that we wouldn't be seeing her anymore (because we're moving) and now we'll have been there four or five times.  I hope we've got all these issues figured out soon!

March 29, 2015

dear ryann

Miss Ryann Elizabeth,

How on Earth are you FIVE?!?!?  I can't seem to wrap my head around it.  You are five.  In the fall you'll go to kindergarten.  You will spend almost more time away from me than you will with me.

... and now I'm crying.  Sorry, the hormones are raging.

Watching you learn and grow every day has been such a wonderful blessing.  You challenge me in so many ways, but I wouldn't change staying home with you for the world.  One of the most exciting things I've been able to watch you learn recently, is how to read.  Suddenly you can decode lines of text, and it is just fascinating to watch.  And you love to practice writing things too now.  Not really letters per say, no, you just have to write sentences and stories.  The things you ask me to spell for you are getting more and more complicated.  One of my favorites was one morning you were frustrated with Elsie, and you came to me and asked me to spell "Friends who are not nice don't get to ride an animal."  We were heading to the mall and going to ride the carosuel, and you wanted to make certain she knew that if she didn't start being nice, she wouldn't get to participated.  I had to hide my giggles while said each letter.

Some days you have the kindest heart.  Especially towards your sister.  (Some days not so much at all but hey, you're just five now.  I suppose I can cut you some slack.)  You hate when she is in trouble and won't get something special, or if she asks me for something and I tell her no, you want to give that item (generally food) to her.  You regularly feel the need to smother her in hugs out of the blue.  It always catches her off guard and she freaks out, which in turn upsets you, but the gesture is so sweet.  I know you mean well, and one day she'll understand.  You guys crack me up when you play nicely together too.  Usually you'll get her to pretend to be some sort of animal, and you guys crawl all over the family room doing who knows what.  She looks up to you so much, always trying to mimic you.  I know as you get older you'll be a wonderful role model for both of your sisters.  And I think you'll be their protector too.

Ry you've always been my buddy.  We have a good time together.  But with each day I see you truly becoming my friend.  One who understands my hopes and wishes, who wants to hear my thoughts, and who wants to share back with me too.  With each year I've watch your heart grow, and to see you care about my feelings and the things I want, I just can't even describe it.

I know our relationship will always have it's ups and downs.  You're going to eventually turn in to a moody teenager and you'll hate me because I'm over protective and annoying.  But I love you so much, and while I will forever be your mom first, I hope you'll want to be my friend too.

You're amazing, my little unicorn.  I hope all your dreams come true.


twenty weeks


Halfway there!  Or, if history repeats itself, only 18 weeks to go.  This pregnancy is pretty much flying by and I can't do a damn thing about it.

We had our anatomy scan this week and it was so wonderful to see our little baby again.  Chris hasn't brought the ultrasound machine home since 13 weeks so I was anxious to check on her.  We saw all her fingers and toes (I think), all the chambers of her heart, her kidneys, her stomach, her liver, it was so interesting.  I don't recall the tech really going in to depth during the ultrasound or taking so many measurments with the last two, so it was fun.  My doctor said she looks very healthy, and the tech said she probably weighed 13 ounces, measuring 20 weeks 3 days (at 19 weeks 6 days).

As for me, everything looked good as well.  My belly was measuring a couple centimeters ahead, but I'm not all that surprised.  Blood pressure was still in the 120's over 80's so we're good there too.  I talked to my doctor a bit because I wasn't sure if I was already have braxton hicks contractions here and there.  Based on my description of them she said it was more likely irregular cramping, and went on to tell me that the majority of her patients who are pregnant with their third say it is much more painful than they recall the first two pregnancies being.  Yay.

how far along:  20 weeks (compare to 20 weeks with Ryann, 20 weeks with Elsie)

size of babyaccording to the bump a banana, about 6.5 inches long and weighing 10.2 ounces.  I have no idea what she is doing in there right now, lets just go with growing.

weight gain:  10.6 pounds.  I could say 11 pounds.  But the fact that I gained less than a pound this week deserves some sort of victory dance.  Haha.

maternity clothes:  Yes.  Just say no to real pants.

symptoms:  Sore ligaments and pelvic region.  If my entire pelvic area didn't hurt so much I would barely feel pregnant.

exercise:  Running is seriously a joke.  I have no clue how I ran that half when I was pregnant with Elsie because my right side hurts from the waist down every time I try to run.  I can't fathom not running again until like September.  I'll live, but Christopher and I agree, I'm a much happier person when I get to go for a run.  Walking just doesn't do it for me.  But I got in 83,230 steps.  Making it my goal to add in either a day of strength or yoga or something this week.

cravings/aversions:  Ben & Jerry's peanut butter half baked ice cream.  I may have bought four of the little containers at once for fear of running out.  SO GOOD.  No real aversions this time.  Can't decide if that is a good or a bad thing.

movement: I'm feeling more and more movement every day!  It is definitely getting stronger.  I love it.  I think she has even woken me up in the middle of the night a few times.

sleep:  Again a couple of nights of not sleeping well, but mostly I'm just fine.

gender: Sugar and spice and hopefully extra super nice...

looking forward to:  Miss Ryann's birthday weekend.  I hope she is a happy camper, and at least a little bit grateful for how we celebrate her.  Also walls have started to get painted in the new house and they are moving towards staining the floors and I'm just giddy.  I can't wait to see how everything turns out.

worries:  After seeing our sweet girl on the ultrasound and everything looking good, I don't really have much I'm worrying about.  She's healthy.  I'm still healthy.  The home reno is going well.  Elsie is a hot mess (I'll get to that at some point), and that does occasionally stir up my mind, but ultimately I'm pretty content right now.

what's different this time:  The painful ligaments and groin area.  And not being able to run or walk too fast.  So annoying.

best moment this week:  Seeing our baby girl on the ultrasound.  She's got a cute profile!  And looks just like her sisters.  I think... :o)

March 25, 2015

ryann's rockstar fifth birthday party

Ryann doesn't turn five until Sunday, but because of when the space we wanted to use for her party was available, we celebrated this past Friday.  For the first time we held a birthday party outside of our house.  It was an experience, a little crazy for sure, but the kids had a blast and going somewhere else was definitely a good choice!

It took me a while to settle on where to have Ry's party.  She wanted to invite friends from school, and friends from dance, and friends we just hang out with.  I wasn't really sure where to draw the line, and knew it would be difficult to entertain all those kids in our house, especially if it ended up being a cold day, so going elsewhere was the thing to do.  So many places had so many rules on the amount of people, or what you can and can't do, or it just wouldn't function for kids ranging in age from 1-5.  We ended up at Rainbow Play Systems of Olathe.  My friends might smack me for sharing this little gem, but it is a business that sells swing sets and play systems, and during the week you can pay to play in their showroom.  It has been awesome during the winter, and not too busy.  Lucky for us you can also rent the space for birthday parties.  These pictures don't do it justice, the play structures are awesome and there are quite a few different structures in the showroom.


There is also a trampoline, a few more play structures and a party room.  One of the semi stressful (but not really) parts of the party, was having to make sure I brought everything with me and getting it all set-up in about 20 minutes.  Which in reality didn't happen at all.  Thank goodness for my mother.  By the time we had everything carried in and started setting up the party room guests began arriving.  So my mom took the reigns and set up all the food and decorations.  I couldn't have put on the party without her, as usual.  Knowing we wouldn't have long to set up, and that the kids honestly don't care, we kept the decorations simple.  Balloons, plastic table cloths and cute desserts.  We kept the rest of the food simple with fruit, veggies and pizza.  We ended up having tons of leftovers because the kids were more interested in playing than eating, but they all seemed happy with the options.


My friend Jenny made the cake and cookies and they were just so cute.  I can't believe I didn't get a good picture of the cake when we cut it, she made the inside tie dyed.  You can get a little glimpse of it if you check out the cupcakes she made with the leftover batter.  I made the cake topper using my silhouette, and bedazzled a candle I picked up at Target.  For the record Hobby Lobby and Wal-Mart were completely out of 5 candles.  I have no idea.  All the kiddos that came got to take home an inflatable guitar and microphone that I purchased on amazon, as well as some tattoos and beads that I picked up at Party City.

Overall the party was pretty low key, but the kids still had a blast.  They were all red cheeked and sweaty and didn't want to sit still for anything.  We had about five kiddos who were dropped off, which is another situation I haven't really dealt with before.  It wasn't a big deal, and I had said it was perfectly fine in the invitation, it just got a little hectic trying to take care of Ryann and Elsie and make sure all the other kids weren't breaking their necks.  In the end though, like I said, fun.  The whole party was fun and relatively easy.

Oh, and the rock star theme?  Ryann just randomly decided that, and it seemed easy enough, so I went with it.  There are tons of cute ideas for a rock star theme on pinterest, but the would be much more easily executed in a house.  And Party City just so happened to have those napkins and balloons that were pretty much what I was thinking in terms of color scheme.  #winning


Can't believe my girl is going to be five!!

March 23, 2015

good green fun

On St. Patrick's Day we had some of our buddies over for a little play date.  These kids are so much fun and for the most part they get along so well!


I put together some themed food, ordered some pizza, and we had a great morning playing and hanging out.  Ryann sat by the front door for a good thirty minutes waiting for her friends to come over, and she was incredibly sad to see them go.  Apparently the oldest three played some game where they snuck out of Ryann's room and stole things out of the kitchen.  Afterwards I found several measuring cups, spoons and bowls in her bed and closet.  The only concerning item was the apple slicer.  Yikes, but at least they had a good time?


I had to snap some pictures of the girls afterwards of course, and my goodness they are sassy and goofy.


I hope we can squeeze in a few more big play dates before we move.  I'm pretty sure I say or think it every time we all get together, but I don't know what I'm going to do without these mamas and kiddos in my daily life.  Love them so much!

March 22, 2015

nineteen weeks


Well hello belly.  That thing is definitely growing like crazy.  And it looks to me like it is bigger and lower than it way with Elsie.  I can barely stand the feeling of anything on the lower part of my belly.  Everything is just so irritating and uncomfortable.  I'm not sure if it Baby 3's position, less ab stregnth this time around or what.  But bleh.

how far along:  19 weeks (compare to 19 weeks with Ryann, 19 weeks with Elsie)

size of baby:  My app claims that baby girl is the size of a tomato this week.  I generally see a tomato as being kind of small, but whatever.  She is roughly 6 inches long and half a pound.

weight gain:  10 pounds.  I have no excuses for this other than poor eating habits.  The extra weight might also be adding to the uncomfortableness.

maternity clothes:  Yes.  Wish I liked more than one pair of my pants.  Really I think I'm just going to invest in some semi cute lounge clothes or something.  I don't know.  If I could wear pajamas all the time that would be great.

symptoms:  With all the belly issues I've had some ligament paint, but other than that I'm pretty symptom free.

exercise:  Running is becoming a joke.  It is so frustrating knowing that I freaking ran a half marathon at 22 weeks with Elsie.  I can't make it half a mile without being uncomfortable.  All of the ligaments in my right hip and on my right side hurt.  They just do.  I'm going to have to find other ways to stay active and I hate it.  Obviously I'll listen to my body and do what is right for me and the baby, it is just so irritating to not be able to do what I feel like I should.  I did cover 90,708 steps according to my fitbit, so not too shabby at all.

cravings/aversions:  Nothing in particular either way.

movement: Yes, sometimes it seems super strong, but I'll still go a day without really feeling anything.  Definitely starting to pick up though!

sleep:  Twice this week I woke up in the middle of the night and had trouble falling back asleep, but other than that not bad at all.

gender:  I can't wait to get the girl confirmation at my ultrasound this week.

looking forward to:  My ultrasound on Thursday.  I can't wait to see our sweet little girl and I hope everything looks great.

worries: Slightly worried that something will be wrong at the ultrasound, even though I have no reason at all to believe it would be.  Also a little worried I'm going to gain 40+ pounds this time if I can't get the eating habits under control.  Yikes!

what's different this time:  The belly and the inability to run are the biggest differences right now.

best moment this week:  Baby wise Chris was able to feel the lightest tap of a kick.  That is always fun, and I feel like he begins to bond even more with the baby once he can feel it too.  Technically this falls in the following week but we had Ryann's birthday party on Friday and it was a lot of fun.  She seemed to have a really good time as did the other 14 kiddos in attendance.  There were no tears and no fighting that I'm aware of, so it was a win for sure.  Can't believe she will turn five in one week!

March 16, 2015

elsie visits the er, again.

Oh Elsie girl.  I always marveled at how we never had to take Ryann to the doctor for sick visits.  Patted myself on the back for obviously having healthy genes that make healthy babies.  Ha.  HAHA.  Before I get too far I should say that in general my kids are very healthy and I don't take that for granted.  I've watched other families go through things I just can't even begin to imagine and I thank my lucky stars that we've only dealt with mostly non emergent issues.

But anyway.  Elsie?  Thanks for helping us meet our insurance deductible each year (bonus, I'm pretty sure we get to start our deductible over when Chris starts his new job in July, and then we're having a baby, right?  #winning #notsomuch).  Sunday night we racked up our second ER visit in six months, and our fourth trip over to Children's Mercy in a year.  We were driving home from my parents house, and Elsie was asleep in her carseat.  I noticed that her breathing seemed a little heavy, but she also was completely passed out with her chin tucked pretty far down, so I just thought she was uncomfortable.  When we got home she woke up completely pissed and freaking out and you could just tell something was off, but I brushed it off as she was super tired and didn't get a long enough nap.


We played outside (which the girls had done a majority of the day) and then came in for bath.  And her breathing just kept getting worse.  She started wheezing and having retractions.  We toyed with the idea of giving her a breathing treatment, but Christopher wanted her seen and her oxygen levels checked.  So after a quick shower for myself (very much needed, especially if there was a chance I'd have to stay overnight with her!) Elsie and I packed up and headed for the hospital.  I wasn't sure what to think, I could tell her breathing was bad, but she had just been so dang happy and cheerful all day, playing without any issue, that I just couldn't fathom that something really was wrong.  The ER was busy, but we were seen very quickly.  Her oxygen levels looked decent in the 95-96% range, but there was no denying the wheezing and difficulty breathing, so we waited to see a doctor.

He speculated that she had developed asthma, often seen in kids who had bronchiolitis.  She got four puffs of albuterol and a dose of steroids and we waited.  Her breathing very quickly began to sound better.  Her oxygen levels started to bounce around between 91-95%, but she seemed very stable and I was confident that Christopher and I could handle it at home.  So after less than two hours in the ER that is where we went.  Elsie was a little hyped thanks to all the meds, and told me on the way home she was NOT going to sleep.  Nope nope nope.  Eventually we talked her in to it though.  Monday her breathing was still a little rough, and in the morning we didn't quite make it the recommended four hours between inhaler uses.  But after that second dose of steroids kicked in her breathing continued to improve.  She was just extra tired in general.


Monday night we heard Elsie coughing a lot over the monitor.  She never called out to us, or needed us, but I know she didn't sleep well.  Which explains why I had to wake her up at 9:15am to make it to our follow-up with the pediatrician.  I expected everything to be looking much better, but instead Elsie's oxygen level was between 88-92%.  Her doctor was a bit baffled, as her lungs sounded pretty good.  She noted she did have an ear infection, and thought maybe something bacterial was bothering her.  We gave her some more albuterol in the office, and rechecked her levels.  Still the same, but her lungs sounded even better.  So I opted to take her home with instructions to call back in the afternoon to check in, and bring her back in immediately if she began wheezing again.


Thankfully Elsie continued to just sound better and better, and by Thursday when we went back for yet another follow up, her oxygen levels were 98-99%.  Woohoo!  Anytime she has ever had her oxygen checked, I haven't seen a number over 96%, so I was impressed.  And while her ear still didn't look pretty, the doctor said it was improving.  For the record, she has not once complained about her ear bothering her.  Neither of my girls had ever had an ear infection prior to this as far as I know!  The pedi isn't ready to specifically call it asthma just yet, but if Elsie has more trouble in the future she'd consider a daily medication to manage it.

But sweet sweet Elsie girl, please oh please.  Let's just keep our doctor's visits to well checks.  Those are much easier! ;o)

March 13, 2015

eighteen weeks


how far along:  18 weeks (compare to 18 weeks with Ryann, 18 weeks with Elsie)

size of baby:  my What to Expect app tells me baby is about the size of a sweet potato, or 5.5 inches long.  Baby girl is developing yawning and hiccuping skills as her own unique set of toe and fingerprints!

weight gain:  Errr... 8 pounds.  Whatever, I'm over it for now.

maternity clothes:  Yes.  I just have zero interest in being uncomfortable at all.  Why fight it?  And this time around my workout pants are uncomfortable.  I'm not tying them, I don't remember them bothering me with Elsie, but my gosh they are annoying.

symptoms:  Not too much this week.  Other than the belly I barely feel pregnant at all.

exercise:  Sunday I ran just over five miles.  It wasn't pretty, but it wasn't that bad.  The rest of the week any time I've tried to run it has just felt miserable.  I think part of my problem might lack of water intake.  I am struggling so much to get in enough water, I just forget to fill my cup or I'm super busy or some other lame excuse.  I didn't write down all my workouts, but my fitbit claims I covered 82,059 steps.  I'll take it.

cravings/aversions:  Super buttery salty popcorn and biscuits with strawberry jelly.

movement:  It still isn't consistent at all, but I think more and more I'm starting to feel movement.  If I'm not thinking about it, or if this wasn't my third kid, I'm sure it could easily be missed.  Hoping she gets a little stronger in the next two weeks.

sleep:  I could have just copied this section from my 18 week post with Elsie.  Sleeping on my stomach is no longer an option, which kind of sucks, but really only pisses me off if I wake up in the middle of the night.  When I initially get in to bed I'm usually so tired I pass out almost instantly regardless of what position I'm in.

gender:  Girl.

looking forward to:  Our anatomy scan in a couple of weeks.  I haven't been super antsy about it because I already know we're having a girl, but I also haven't 'seen' her since 13 weeks on the crappy portable ultrasound.  I hope I get to see that cute little profile and hear that everything looks great.  Also, just life in general.  The weather is nice, fun things are on the horizon, there is a little bit of fun in everyday.  We're in a good (and hectic) place and I'm loving it.

worries: While life has been good, I've had a few challenging days with the girls in the listening/following directions and such department with the girls, and that always makes it terrifying to think of adding another to the mix.  I've also been laying on the mom guilt in my head, because I don't cook enough healthy meals, or spend enough time doing this or that with the kids, I yell too much, the list could go on and on.  I want to be super mom, but I'm just not.  I know it's ok, but I know almost every mom out there understands too.

what's different this time:  I was just discussing with a friend today that this pregnancy just seems so completely unreal, and so far in the back of my mind.  I know I felt that way a bit with Elsie, but my goodness I forget I'm pregnant a lot.

best moment this week:  The weather is by far the best thing this week.  It is such a wonderful thing to welcome after the bitter cold over the last month.  Spring is in the air and I just freaking love it.  Spring is 100% my favorite.

March 9, 2015

fireplace make over

Over the weekend Christopher and I tackled our first renovation project (that we are doing ourselves) in our new home.  The family room (living room? I never know) has a large brick fireplace.  I'm not opposed to a fireplace, or brick, but that thing was a big bright red/orange eye sore in my opinion.  I didn't want to paint it because I wanted to keep more of the character.  And totally redoing it just isn't in the budget.  So I started researching other options and came across white washing.  I came across this image on pinterest and fell in love:


I read through several tutorials I found on pinterest and decided white washing was a project we could tackle.  Most said that it was a pretty easy idiot proof thing to do, and I loved that we could preserve the character of the brick while still toning down the red/orange factor.  If you want to white wash your own brick you'll need to gather the following:

- white paint (we used our trim paint in an eggshell finish, but any white paint will do)
- a paint brush
- some rags
- a bucket
- water

While browsing the tutorials I compared the images to the paint ratios.  I knew I didn't want a lot of coverage but didn't want to screw anything up.  The least amount of paint we saw used was 1 part paint to 3 parts water, so that is what we went with.  We taped off around the fireplace and covered the mantle with paper towels, and then while Chris mixed up the paint I used a rag to brush excess dust and crap off the brick.  And then we got to work.  Chris put the paint on the brick and I went along behind him and rubbed it off.  We hoped it would be a quick project, but it took us a couple of hours.  After we were all done though, it was worth it.  We started with this...


A couple of progress shots...


And we ended with this...


I love it.  While we were working I was worried the change wouldn't be that noticeable, but when all was said and done and I stepped back, I was amazed.  It truly leaves the character, but tones down the intensity of the brick.  I definitely rubbed most of the paint back off.  Some of the smoother bricks we had to go back and do a second coat because they still stood out quite a bit, but mostly this is just one coat rubbed on and back off.

It is a messy job.  The watered down paint runs and splatters pretty easily so be sure to take that in to account in your prep.  And make sure if there is a big run that you rub it off right away.  We have a few streaks and splatters that kind of show up because I didn't get to them when they happened.  But it isn't a huge deal.

I'm not exactly sure what I'm going to do with the mantle.  It got accidentally painted when all the trim was being done.  At first I was pissed because I think we'll all agree that in that first picture, the damn thing is hideous.  It just sticks out.  But once the brick was white washed it didn't look so bad.  I think we're going to leave it until the walls are painted and the floors are stained before I make a final decision.  And picking the perfect gray for this room is going to kill me.  So many options.  I want the room to be light and bright, but I definitely want some contrast between the trim as well.  The entry is being painted revere pewter, and while I love the color, I'm not sure I want to run that throughout the entire main floor.  Eventually I'll figure it out, I think I'm currently at 11 different samples of gray paint in the house.  Haha.

And for a little more fun, what the room looked like when we bought the house...


And a side by side of the brick revamp...


That wasn't much of a tutorial, so if you have any questions feel free to ask.  It really is a simple project that you can get done in an afternoon.  And I love the results!

March 7, 2015

seventeen weeks


how far along:  17 weeks (compare to 17 weeks with Ryann, 17 weeks with Elsie)

size of baby:  I'm not sure why I haven't switched where I get my resources from for this section.  I no longer wish to send any traffic to the site that will not be named.  Haha.  But anway, my 'what to expect app' says baby is the size of a turnip, about 5 inches long and weighing 3.5 ounces.  She has started practicing sucking and swallowing and her heart is now regulated by her brain.

weight gain:  6.4 pounds.  My eating has been pretty crappy so I'm honestly surprised it isn't way worse.

maternity clothes:  Yup.  When we left for Georgia my winter coat fit absolutely fine.  10 days later I put it on when we were heading home and it barely buttoned.  And all of the sudden this week I just could not wear regular pants.  Some of them still button, but they don't really feel or look good.  As luck would have it I have misplaced my absolute favorite pair of maternity pants I had with Elsie.  And every other pair I seem to own are boot cut.  Which I almost never wear.  Guess some shopping is in order!

I took this picture the day that I wore my maternity pants for the first time.  Looking at it I haven't a clue how I was attempting to wear regular pants at all.


symptoms:  For some reason, it doesn't matter what I eat, but after a meal I almost always feel like crap.  Thursday night I had an apple and peanut butter.  That is it.  And my stomach was churning.  I just don't get it.  I've also had several headaches this week.  It may or may not be related to indulging in a lot of almond M&M eggs, but sometimes it is there when I wake up in the morning so I don't think it is all food related.  But who knows.

exercise:  I ran a 10k this week!  With just under a 10 minute per mile pace!  I'm pretty stoked about that.  I know I was running and working out a lot more when I was pregnant with Elsie, but I'm still happy that I'm staying relatively active.  This week I ran 11.8 miles, walked 7.25 miles and covered 84,857 steps.  For the record my mileage is included in my weekly steps, I just note when I am actually out running or walking on the treadmill.  Right now I'm pretty consistently trying to run three days a week, and then just stay as active as I possibly can the other days.  Some days I can run 6 miles straight, and some days I just can't make myself run more than a mile without stopping.  I think it's all in my head, but as long as I keep moving I'll be happy.  I'm hoping I can run at least some of the mother's day 5k.

cravings/aversions:  I still love fruit and almost always could go for a milkshake, but other than that no strong cravings.  Really no terrible aversions either.

movement:  I felt her again one morning this week, just barely, and just for a minute.  But I'm sure it was her.  I'm so anxious for the movement to pick up.

sleep:  For some reason I can't sleep past 5:20am right now.  So frustrating.  I've also woken up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom a couple of times.  Sleep could definitely be better.

gender:  Truthfully I'm still in denial that there is another little girl in my belly.  But I'm very excited.

looking forward to:  I can't wait to feel her move daily.  I'm excited to start painting the walls in our new house.  Spring weather is on the way.  We're heading in to very fun and very busy times.

worries:  That we'll pick the wrong name for our baby girl.  Naming a baby is always stressful to me.  I mean, it is so permanent.  And I try and stay away from the top 100-200 names according to the social security list, which means sometimes my preferences are a little, different?  Not that I'm trying to name my kids anything ridiculous.  But I don't want other people to hate it, I don't want her to hate it, why is naming a kid SO HARD?!?!  I've also been worried about how selling our house is going to go, and what the heck we are going to do with our cats during the process.

what's different this time:  Honestly my pregnancies are starting to seem quite the same.  It looks like this is pretty much the week that I have to start wearing maternity clothes.  With Elsie I also thought I was feeling a touch of movement (though I am  more sure of it this time).  So my blood pressure will probably be out of wack by 38 weeks, I'll be induced, and give birth to a third 6lb4oz little girl.  But maybe she'll prove me wrong and do things her own way.  ;o)

What is different is how much more aware Ryann is this time.  Last week I mentioned she is obsessed with her baby sister, and it still rings true this week.  She is regularly rubbing my belly and asking questions about her baby sister and talking about how when we move to the new house she is going to be born.  She also makes big claims about helping me change her diapers.  We'll see about that!

best moment this week:  I'm not sure.  Life has been pretty good, nothing to complain about.  But no really big wow moments.  We're headed to a preschool/MMO open house this weekend for Elsie, and I got Ryann registered for Kindergarten round-up.  I can't believe this is where we are at, but I'm loving it.  Life is crazy busy, hectic and exhausting, but so much fun.

March 4, 2015

design disagreements

Our home renovation is trucking along and I'm loving it.  New kitchen cabinets have been ordered, a large opening has been created between the kitchen and the family room, all the trim has been painted and new hardwood floors are being installed.  I've only been over there once, but my mom and dad visit and send me updates occasionally.  I get so giddy to see the progress.


I'm hoping this weekend we will get to go and finalize the master bathroom design and finishes.  We also might try our hand at white washing the fireplace.  I don't want to paint it straight white, but the straight red brick just isn't working for me.  So I want to do a really really thin wash of white over it to tone down the red and help it blend in to my more neutral palette.

Now that the trim is painted we can get to work on doing the walls in the upstairs bedrooms.  I thought I'd be a good mom and include my kids in the design process as much as I could, but there is where we've run in to an issue.  When I asked Elsie what color she wanted her room, she quickly shouted "RED!"  Not exactly what I was wanting to hear.  As luck would have it, Ryann keeps requesting that I paint her walls purple.  Red and purple.  Quite possibly my two least favorite colors to design with.  In general I just find red too harsh.  And I think as a Jayhawk fan I just have this ingrained aversion to purple.  So I'm working on how to come to a compromise with their rooms.

For Elsie's room, I've actually become a little excited about the color scheme.  Along with red she requested pink.  Oh my little February baby, forever a Valentine!  Haha.  When I searched red and pink bedrooms on Pinterest I found this winner via 6th Street Design School.


Most of the main walls in our house are going to be varying shades of grey, so I was hoping to put some color on the walls in the kids room.  However I love how the bright colors of that room pop against the neutral walls.  I think the use of the red is just the right amount, and Kirsten was able to bring other colors into the room in fun ways.  Definitely a great jumping off point for me.  My plan is to use Ryann's pink upholstered headboard and probably her white comforter.  From there I'll add fun pillows, hopefully some DIY abstract art and who knows what else.

Ryann's room is a different story.  Right now we're leaning towards a coral, pink and purple color scheme.  I was imagining something like this:


But Ryann isn't sold.  She wants a 'real purple'.  Apparently I picked a fake purple?  And she is seriously adamant that I paint the walls purple.  I have never in my life imagined painting any walls in my house purple.  But maybe I'll cave just for her.  Really I'd be alright painting one wall purple (but more of my version of purple!) but her room stumps me.  It has a long hallway leading in to it, and then the wall attached to that hallway is where the bed will go.  Usually I would imagine the bed wall as the feature wall, but I don't know how to deal with the hallway.

Oh life's dilemmas.  I'm sure we'll figure it out eventually.  Ryann's room will certainly need the most 'stuff'.  Most of her furniture is going to Elsie, and most of Elsie's will go to the nursery.  Speaking of the nursery, I'm not really sure what direction I want to go in there either.  I still love the dresser we have in Elsie's room, and it won't fit in her new room (color wise or size) so it will probably go to the baby.  But I don't think I want to stick with the same color scheme.  Here are a couple of rooms I've been loving lately:

both via Apartment Therapy, here and here

I'm not sure what exactly draws me to them, but I just love them.  I'd look to incorporate a little black and white, and a lot of color.  The room on the right gives me hope that I can utilize Elsie's dresser while pulling in some other fun colors.  The only thing I'm slightly sad that I don't think I'll be reusing are Ryann's curtains (see them here).  They are just a little too pastel for what I'm going for.

I can't wait to see our house come together.  The design and decorating process will be long.  It has to be.  I don't want to rush just to get everything 'done'.  But I'm getting more and more excited the further we get!

March 2, 2015

dolphin dashing and step counting

We are back from a mostly cold and rainy but still fun 10 days in Georgia!  I absolutely love going to Georgia, but I think 10 days without the ability to go to the pool and the beach every day was a bit much for us.  But nonetheless it was a relaxing trip and I'm so happy we had the opportunity to go.  But more on the actual trip another time.

The whole reason we scheduled this particular trip to Georgia was so I could run the Super Dolphin Day Race.  My mom had been on the island last year when the race was going on and thought it would be fun for us to be a part of it this year.  The had a 10k, a 5k and a 1 mile race.  If you were bold you could take on all three, as the 10k was at 7am, the 5k at 8:30am and the 1 mile at 9:30am.  If I wasn't pregnant it would have been fun to go for that.  Just over 10 miles would be great if you're training for a spring half!  But I am pregnant, so I opted to play it safe, and remind myself that I hadn't run more than 5 miles since November.


When I walked to the end of my parent's driveway that morning, I could literally see the race start about a football field away.  Talk about the most convienent race start I've ever had.  I was still in bed 45 minutes before the thing started.  And the way the course worked out the 6 mile marker was actually in my parent's yard.  So Papa and Ryann camped out at the end of the driveway to watch me run by!  I loved it.  But back to the start.  I headed over about 10 minutes before the start time, and I was stupidly shocked at how few people were running the race.  And nearly every single person looked like a 'legit' runner, with Garmins and all that.  I wasn't planning on being super slow, but I'd been running anywhere between a 10 and 11 minute mile.  So I texted my mom and told her not to be alarmed if I came in last.  Ha.

Thankfully I didn't finish last.  Well I was the slowest in my age group, but I was 112 out of 142 total runners.  I am proud to say that I finished in 1:01:56, a 9:58 mile pace!  Not speedy by any means, but great for me right now, and certainly not anything to be embarrassed about.  The course is mostly residential (which isn't surprising since the island is small!) and incredibly flat.  There was one stretch close to east beach that was SUPER windy, but it was a very windy day in general so it was to be expected.  Overall I really loved the race.  The convienient start and finish definitely helped.  And it was fun that the girls could watch all the runners from the windows of the house.  The race was in support of the local elementary schools so there was a lot of kids running, something I think is great for my girls to see.  I can't wait until one of them is interested in running with me!

On a different but still health related note, I mentioned that I snagged a fitbit flex that my dad wasn't going to use.  I haven't had it very long, but so far I'm a fan.  It is certainly motivating!  And also has shown me that I need to move my butt even more.  There have been a couple days that I've run 3 miles, and still struggled to hit 10,000 steps by the end of the day.  But my stubborness and hatred of not reaching a goal works well with the dang thing so I've found myself doing laps in the family room at the end of the night to get those last 300-500 steps or whatever.

I can't speak for it's accuracy, but in one random article I read it noted the fitbit products are some of the most accurate for step counting.  I know that I sometimes get extra steps counted because I don't truly have a dominant hand.  I write and eat left handed, but everything else I do with my right hand.  I noticed it counted steps while I was doing my make-up, but sometimes doesn't count steps when I'm carrying Elsie or pushing a stroller or a cart.  So I think in the end it all evens out.  Or something like that.  I look forward to the warm weather when we can be outside all the time getting in more steps! ;o)