Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Scheduling Conflict

My Dear Elizabeth,

Your dad and I are so excited about meeting you! And while we still have tons of stuff to do to prepare for your arrival (like pick out your nursery's color scheme, get you a place to sleep, clean clothes, clean diapers, etc.) I wish it was tomorrow because I really like baby snuggles and I suspect your baby snuggles will be the best thing ever. Your dad is a pretty awesome snuggler, but I suspect you are the best snuggler ever in the history of the world and I'm really looking forward to that.

There's just one concern I have about your arrival. See your due date is July 7 and you and I both know that due dates aren't a terribly exact science. In fact, it's most likely that you'll arrive a week after that. And I'm totally cool with that. Which brings me to my request: can you please hang tight until about 3 p.m. on July 15? That should give me plenty of time to either go see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 at midnight or the earliest matinĂ©e, depending on how much energy you've left me at that point.

Me at Platform 9 3/4. For reals.

You might have figured it out by now but I'm a huge Harry Potter fan and this is the last big Harry Potter event (Unless there's a book 8, which if it happens, I will literally wet myself with joy.) and it's so bittersweet and exciting. And if you're already here by July 15 then it will be tricky for me to get to the theater in a timely manner because I can't leave you without your only food source for the length of a Harry Potter film. And I'm not sure I want you to experience the terror of Voldemort yet so I probably shouldn't take you to the theater with me. And technically you owe me because I put off seeing the last Harry Potter movie for two weeks because I felt so icky and tired and incapable of going to a theater thanks to you. And while you're totally forgiven for all that (and that I won't be able to fit in my Harry Potter t-shirt), it might be nice if you could let me see this one on release day.

So that's all. Keep growing and getting cute in there and we'll see you in July. Preferably after I've seen the last  Harry Potter movie. ;)

All my love,


Thursday, April 21, 2011

28 Weeks

Hello, Third Trimester!

28 weeks

Some think this sounds morbid, but honestly: I'm relieved to know that if for some reason I went in to labor right now, Elizabeth would very likely survive thanks to modern technology and NICUs. I'd infinitely prefer she stay where she is for another 12 weeks, but it's a small comfort. Like making it through your first semester and knowing you have a much lower miscarriage rate.

Apparently, Lee and I both thought Elizabeth's middle name was going to be something different. I thought we had decided on Anne; Lee thought we had decided on Jane. Now we're open for debate again. Thoughts? I'm not sure if Vince Gill's song Liza Jane helps or hurts my affection for Jane. I also thinking naming my daughter after my favorite fictional character and author seems  a little much for one name. Of course I also adore Anne Elliott so the alternative is naming her after two of my favorite fictional characters. I have long considered Anne as a potential name though, before I knew and loved Anne Elliott, so does that make it less weird? In college I made calls to high school students encouraging them to come to Centre, and one girl I called was totally named Elizabeth Bennet LastName. It could be a family name, or maybe her mom and I should be friends.

Lee finally felt Elizabeth move. It was exciting.

I have my glucose test this week and I handled the blood work portion like a champ, meaning that I did not make Lee speak to me in his squeaky voice. He did have to sit right next to me though and I squeezed his hand.

I was kind of getting tired of reading birth books, even though I've only read 1.25, but I think I'm going to power through them. The more I can hype myself up mentally for this birth thing, the better. Lee and I agree that the only thing between me and my happy fuzzy image of a natural birth is my tendency to panic. I'm so good at panicking. I really do believe birth is largely mental so I will indoctrinate myself with everything (ish) Ina May ever wrote. (And yes I know that birth is unpredictable and the only thing that matters is that we all leave the hospital alive, but I also think it's important to have goals and plans for accomplishing large feats, like helping my tiny human out of my belly and into my arms for snuggles. Very much looking forward to snuggles.)

I have been consuming a ridiculous amount of candy and root beer floats lately. This prompts the following conversation with myself:
- You really shouldn't be eating all this candy.
- What Elizabeth wants, Elizabeth gets.
- You know you would never actually give Elizabeth this much candy.
Then I nom away anyway.

The nursery color scheme thoughts that have been floating in my head were finally starting to form into a solid plan...until Joann's sold out of my favorite yellow fabric. I'm hoping the room will be decorated by the time she's five. Basically we're looking at pink/yellow, teal/yellow or teal/pink.

I painted my nails last night for what is probably the last time before baby. I could barely reach my toes. Lee has been informed he might have to take over the feet grooming for awhile. I can't remember if I've told him he's also going to have to start bathing Zoey and scrubbing the bath tub because leaning over the tub is unpleasant. Hmm... Maybe he'll think of bathing Zoey as a form of torture and enjoy it.

Slightly-baby related news: I've been wanting to improve my photography skills for sometime but really haven't. I have oodles of online tutorials and articles bookmarked for me to read and study but I still haven't sat down to do it. So I signed up for a one-day, four-hour class at a local camera shop. It's not until June 25 so just in time for me to be ready to take oodles and oodles of baby pictures. (I kind of want to do a photo series like this one.)


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A Craft Project Three Years in the Making

I can't remember where I first saw it, but for the past three years I've been wanting to staple some chicken wire to the back of a photo frame to store and display my earrings. It should've been simple enough but I didn't have a staple gun or chicken wire and these aren't items you can buy at Michael's with a 50% off coupon. These items required paying full price at Lowe's and three years ago I didn't know my way around a Lowe's, or how helpful the staff is when your husband sends you to buy some PVC pipe and you wind up needing a hack saw too and what's a hack saw?! We got a frame as a wedding gift that I knew would be perfect for this project, but without the staple gun and chicken wire, my earrings remained in their tiny bowl for me to dig through in search of matching pairs.

When we moved into our house 11 months ago, I discovered some chicken wire the previous owners had left behind. I still didn't have  a staple gun.

Finally last week I pulled out the chicken wire to squirrel-proof my garden. After three years, I decided it was finally time to get a staple gun and complete my long-awaited earring display thingy.

Ta da! The frame has gotten a little scuffed up over the years so I'll probably paint it eventually, but at least now I can see and locate all my earrings! (Well, not my hoops but I only have a couple pairs of those so it's okay.)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Our Garden is Growing!!

On Thursday I planted our garden and I must say, I'm ridiculously proud of it. For someone whose idea of enjoying the outdoors involves drinking on patios and whose idea of getting "my hands dirty" involves a sewing machine or glue gun, I feel like this garden is a big step in the direction of...I don't know...the direction of facing my bug fears in the name of cheap, readily available, quality produce?! Lee measured, placed the large metal rods and tilled up the ground, but I did everything else. And it turned out awesome.

The tomatoes and peppers we'll be growing from transplants starting next month (like my chart told me to), but here is everything else, neatly planted and labeled in their square foot of space.

To protect my pride and joy from squirrels/rabbits/opossums/mice, I fenced it in with some chicken wire. Only cut myself twice! I'm particularly proud of the fence. It seems so handy of me. I also sprinkled cayenne and pepper around the edges because I've heard that helps too.

As of today, the cilantro and broccoli were sprouting!! Despite the fact that my container plants have failed in the past, I seem to be a natural at in-the-ground gardening.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I Have No Idea Where I Am Going

Catholics tend to collect prayer cards. Retreats, funerals, gifts...they just pile up over time. I had one, which was really just laminated neon green card stock, with a prayer from Thomas Merton that I loved. I lost it a few years ago and Internet searching had previously been unhelpful for tracking it down, but I finally found it last week! It really speaks to the uncertainty that has always bothered me: What am I doing? How will I figure out what I should do?  Am I at least being a decent Christian along the way?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Handle with Care

I think one of the best parts of shopping on Etsy is the adorable packaging your item usually arrives in. Here's how I packaged my first Etsy sale (so exciting!). I wanted something that had my shop info  that also kept everything together in the padded mailer. The ribbon is taped together in the back so there's no bow to add bulk.

And I designed some mailing labels for the outside.

I know PayPal will print a shipping label for you, but it's not nearly as cute.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Week in Review 4/8

+ Just when I think I've got the nursery color scheme picked out, I see something that makes me reconsider.


+ You can never have too many tote bag tutorials. Of course if you saw my ratio of tote-bag-tutorials-saved (tons) to tote-bag-tutorials-completed (one), you might think otherwise.

+ Speaking of more tutorials to have in case I ever take the time to complete them, these finger-knitted bracelets look awesome.

Have a wonderful weekend! I suspect my weekend will be full of trim painting. Yay for getting projects done, but boo for actually having to do them.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

How Does Your Garden Grow?

I've made a few sad attempts at gardening over the past couple years. Despite my lack of success with growing my own foods, I've decided to not let that stop me and this year we are expanding! After all, year 1 the apartment balcony was shady, and year 2 I didn't water. So this year, with sun and watering, I'm hoping to reap a successful harvest.

We've decided to do a 4x4 square-foot garden without the raised bed to save money on buying all the soil. We did get some manure to mix in with our current soil to increase its quality.

Here's our little spot, waiting for its manure, seeds and transplants!

And here's the current planned layout.

If all goes well this year, I'm hoping to expand into more root vegetables next year, like carrots, potatoes, onions and garlic.