dearest thursday: shower time

image

michael and i had an “early” baby shower in may; friends and family typically fête the happy couple closer to their due date. our may shower allowed my coworkers to attend because teachers don’t always see each other in the summer (two words: it’s vacay). i felt weird asking people for presents so we created a basic wishlist (diapers, wipes, onesies, bottles, swaddles, etc.) and guests could choose from the list or share their own gifts.

we received many helpful and fun presents, some of which inspired my shopping picks for today. all of these items are under $30 at the nordstrom anniversary sale, and i think they would please any experienced or expecting mama out there. scoop them up soon because i may not be able to talk myself out of buying another cute blanket!

  1. stem baby cardigan: this cozy sweater would look great on a boy or girl. i like the oversized buttons and the “elf” style hood. on sale for $25.
  2. stem baby triangle blanket: oh my. this blanket would be perfect in our little boy’s camp-themed room. the orange, turquoise, and grey stand out as a cheerful yet gender neutral color combo. on sale for $30.
  3. tiny toms: toms shoes get even cuter as they get smaller. these crochet lace ones would be lovely on a little girl. on sale for $30.
  4. wooden porcupine: i worked at a children’s toy store in college, and we sold tons of wooden toys. they’re durable and families tend to use them for years and hand them down to younger siblings. on sale for $17.
  5. baby age blocks: it’s popular for moms to document their babies’ ages with stickers or patches. these wooden blocks are a cute alternative! on sale for $26.

collage by me. images via nordstrom.


imageimageimageimage

2014. make + take: wall weaving. 
materials: assorted yarn (the more textures the better), fabric scraps, tapestry needle, loom (homemade or store-bought)
okay y’all, wall weavings are awesome. i have three reasons: one, they are easier to make than you think, and two, they are the perfect pregnant lady craft. i can sit on the sofa, put my feet up, and knock one out in a day. what’s the third reason? they all look terrific and different; once you learn how to loom you can create the symmetrical or random pattern of your dreams.
today’s make + take is more of a show + tell. recently the team at a beautiful mess posted a gorgeously photographed and thorough tutorial, beating any other instructions i could have shared with you. don’t feel intimidated by the number of steps; they are incredibly helpful.
last friday my friend midge came over and we both made wall weavings. midge used my homemade loom and i used a wooden loom similar to this one. we quickly learned that different textures and widths of yarn are ideal; the contrast immediately elevates your weaving from so-so to so cool! plus midge brought her own yarn stash and we had many colors and textures with our combined collections.
i chose ivory, blue, and green as anchor colors for the baby’s room and added small areas of yellow, black, red, and pink. after i completed the weaving, i went back and tied the pom poms (leftover from our wedding) and fabric scraps (the green stripes are silk ribbons cut from a thrift store shirt). i stuck my weaving to a fallen branch from a neighbor’s yard; sophie and i walked by the stick for days before i grabbed it. we’re criminals!
i loved the weaving so much that i promptly made a smaller one to hang in his room. later this summer when my mom visits, she’ll probably ask, “what is THAT?” and i’ll just say, “it’s art.”

2014. make + take: wall weaving. 

materials: assorted yarn (the more textures the better), fabric scraps, tapestry needle, loom (homemade or store-bought)

okay y’all, wall weavings are awesome. i have three reasons: one, they are easier to make than you think, and two, they are the perfect pregnant lady craft. i can sit on the sofa, put my feet up, and knock one out in a day. what’s the third reason? they all look terrific and different; once you learn how to loom you can create the symmetrical or random pattern of your dreams.

today’s make + take is more of a show + tell. recently the team at a beautiful mess posted a gorgeously photographed and thorough tutorial, beating any other instructions i could have shared with you. don’t feel intimidated by the number of steps; they are incredibly helpful.

last friday my friend midge came over and we both made wall weavings. midge used my homemade loom and i used a wooden loom similar to this one. we quickly learned that different textures and widths of yarn are ideal; the contrast immediately elevates your weaving from so-so to so cool! plus midge brought her own yarn stash and we had many colors and textures with our combined collections.

i chose ivory, blue, and green as anchor colors for the baby’s room and added small areas of yellow, black, red, and pink. after i completed the weaving, i went back and tied the pom poms (leftover from our wedding) and fabric scraps (the green stripes are silk ribbons cut from a thrift store shirt). i stuck my weaving to a fallen branch from a neighbor’s yard; sophie and i walked by the stick for days before i grabbed it. we’re criminals!

i loved the weaving so much that i promptly made a smaller one to hang in his room. later this summer when my mom visits, she’ll probably ask, “what is THAT?” and i’ll just say, “it’s art.”


imageimageimageimage

lovely tuesday: 34 weeks

image

this week has been a whirlwind. michael and i toured the hospital on sunday and we saw tiny twins in the nursery! the nurses put them in the same bed and they snuggled together. the sight of them was very heartwarming. we took a breastfeeding class on monday evening; michael was a good sport because he met me after work and the instructor didn’t dismiss us until 9:30. today i had a check-up. our little boy is very active with a strong heartbeat.

i’ve been scratching my shoulders and legs at night. my doctor said pregnant women tend to be generally itchy but the office will run a test to make sure it isn’t anything serious. the hot weather doesn’t help either; i feel like i am perpetually frozen from the air conditioning or sweaty from the outdoors. for some strange reason i’m into jeans and tees lately. they’re fine for the mornings but terrible for the afternoons!

have you seen little knitty things? it’s an etsy shop by melanie (of une vie géniale, she used to blog at idée géniale). i bought the baby a red bedford cap and a brown bear cap. she also makes pom pom and tassel garlands. if you’re a mama, mama-to-be, or cute stuff lover, check out her collection!


imageimageimageimage


imageimageimageimage

2014. tweedledee. 
anne klein cardigan. striped jumpsuit from tj maxx. swedish hasbeens super high clogs. apolis market bag.
i first saw the jumpsuit on jen (of jen loves kev) a few weeks ago and i thought it was super cute! she bought it from tj maxx but selections at their stores tend to vary; i doubted it would show up at my local chain. well, it did! and kelsey (of snappy casual) found one the other day, too.
the stripes hide my baby bump extremely well. never let anyone tell you to avoid horizontal stripes! michael said i looked like alice in wonderland; i think he meant i looked like tweedledee. he also told me the jumpsuit resembled long johns so that’s enough commentary from the husband for today. :o)
the look | similar sweater | similar jumpsuit | shoes | bag

2014. tweedledee. 

anne klein cardigan. striped jumpsuit from tj maxx. swedish hasbeens super high clogs. apolis market bag.

i first saw the jumpsuit on jen (of jen loves kev) a few weeks ago and i thought it was super cute! she bought it from tj maxx but selections at their stores tend to vary; i doubted it would show up at my local chain. well, it did! and kelsey (of snappy casual) found one the other day, too.

the stripes hide my baby bump extremely well. never let anyone tell you to avoid horizontal stripes! michael said i looked like alice in wonderland; i think he meant i looked like tweedledee. he also told me the jumpsuit resembled long johns so that’s enough commentary from the husband for today. :o)

the look | similar sweater | similar jumpsuit | shoes | bag


imageimageimageimage

lovely tuesday: 33 weeks

ahhh! seven more weeks to go! i’m feeling good this week. there are few things that several days of rest and homemade hot compresses can’t fix. on friday the french lost but i wasn’t sour for too long. michael built the crib and painted like a wonderful husband. i also ordered arrow decals for the baby’s room; i hope they look as good as i imagine!

in other baby news i’m sewing wall hangings for his room and figuring out where to store books and toys (wooden wall shelves, maybe). i hope that he grows up and loves his room because we’ve put our hearts in it! it’s slowly coming together, and i’ll share more soon.

we had dinner at arcade midtown kitchen awhile ago. the restaurant is home to a quirky zoltar machine similar to the one in the 1980’s movie, big. we didn’t visit for zoltar— the food was delicious— but as soon as we arrived home, i had to watch big. fast forward to sunday and i dreamt that we were at FAO schwarz and i could not find our baby. what a terrible dream! thanks a lot zoltar and tom hanks.


imageimageimageimage

dearest thursday: first bump

as a pregnant woman i often receive advice ranging from good to mediocre to—how can i say it politely— unsolicited. you are told what you should and shouldn’t eat, use, buy, do, etc. most people share advice in a friendly way, and i listen, discuss with my best friend (who’s expecting her second child), or ask my doctor. i still eat sushi and drink coffee. i just avoid the fish on the no-no list and add a ton of milk.

maybe i’m one of the lucky ones but no one has suggested what i should wear, thank goodness! i’ve learned that women’s bodies vary greatly in pregnancy; there is no default way of carrying your baby or dressing your bump. i’m 5’9” with a long torso and our baby boy is all in front. my personal style hasn’t changed at all besides having more elastic in my life.

here are some of my favorite items i’ve enjoyed wearing during this journey. you might like them, too, because only the jeans are “maternity”, believe it or not!

  1. clovella top: i bought the vibrant blouse on sale before i began to show. it still covers my bump perfectly. i like wearing it with skinny jeans and sandals.
  2. lush maxi dress: i picked up a few of these in different styles. they are super comfortable! the fabric is rayon, similar to my pricier rachel pally dresses.
  3. snapdragon top: this is another peplum blouse but in silk. i have the floral version from anthropologie and a zig-zag version from LM’s sample sale. they look great with jeans and skirts.
  4. maternity verdugo leggings: i’ll say it once and say it again: i love paige denim. they are absolutely the best kind of jeans. the maternity leggings have elastic at the sides to fit the bump.
  5. drawstring skirts: buy them two or three sizes bigger and they’ll last through your pregnancy.
  6. braided sightseer sandals: my brown boardwalk sandals broke and these replaced them. they’re comfy and cute.

what did you wear during your pregnancy?

collage by me. images via anthropologie, nordstrom, steven alan, matches, j.crew. and madewell.


imageimageimageimage

lovely tuesday: 32 weeks

hello! i meant to blog more often last week but i pulled a muscle in my leg and limped around for a few days. the doctor instructed me to “take it easy” and so i did. sophie and i watched the world cup matches, read real simple, and organized materials for my substitute teacher. i also managed to snag two things from the lauren moffatt online sample sale!

in my last update i mentioned the baby had hiccups; i can feel his hiccups once or twice a day now. i’m a little alarmed that he moves around constantly; i think he recently discovered how to roll. his kicks hurt occasionally, but he’s been a good boy (i.e. i’m not yelping in the grocery store yet).

the other day i thought about my summer wardrobe and i missed wearing shorts. it’s not too late to buy a pair or two. i find myself craving things i couldn’t possibly wear, too, like high-waisted denim skirts (i want this one) or shift dresses (hard to pull off with a growing bump). 

are you doing anything fun for fourth of july? i’ll be rooting for france, and michael will side with germany. we’ll probably build a crib and cook hot dogs. enjoy the holiday and and wear your american best. our team played so hard today; you’re my MVP tim howard!


imageimageimageimage

lovely tuesday: 31 weeks

whew! i can cross another week off our calendar. week 31 had its ups and downs. weepy moments occurred a couple of times during this journey but i was all out of sorts this week. i worried about a lot of random things like going into labor at home to being a good mom to living away from our families to typing up eight weeks of lesson plans. and then i worried more because i was worrying and ended up feeling more anxious.

if i’ve learned anything over the last seven months, it’s that everything i feel or experience isn’t unusual. sometimes pregnant women are super happy and other times you know better than to mess with one. sometimes we might cry over spilt popcorn, or like me yesterday, not being able to paint my toenails.

in other news, we’re planning to use cloth diapers so if you have any brands or advice to share, please do! we will use pampers when he is born and later on when he goes to daycare (unless his center allows the cloth kind). i never thought i would write about diapers on the blog but hey, there’s a first time for everything!


imageimageimageimage

2014. the thirteen rain lilies. 
have you heard of rain lilies? i had no idea what they were until we moved to texas. they’re delicate white or pink flowers that magically appear in a yard, field, or alley after a storm. scientists call them zephyranthes. gardeners can buy them in pots, but they grow so randomly around the side of the house i like to believe they’re there just because they are.
sometimes sophie and i walk in a misty afternoon and she curiously pulls me towards the lilies and sniffs them. i’m not sure if they have a strong scent or she senses the fresh rain. but she always looks so funny with her face against the flowers that i smile and wish i could capture that moment forever.
when i feel sad or lonely i think of rain lilies and i am reminded that it’s okay to cry. there is always goodness in the world after the clouds part. if a little pug understands, then i should, too.
the thirteen is a personal photo project that documents little things in my life that mean something special. every friday i’ll share a collection of items and a story of their importance.

2014. the thirteen rain lilies. 

have you heard of rain lilies? i had no idea what they were until we moved to texas. they’re delicate white or pink flowers that magically appear in a yard, field, or alley after a storm. scientists call them zephyranthes. gardeners can buy them in pots, but they grow so randomly around the side of the house i like to believe they’re there just because they are.

sometimes sophie and i walk in a misty afternoon and she curiously pulls me towards the lilies and sniffs them. i’m not sure if they have a strong scent or she senses the fresh rain. but she always looks so funny with her face against the flowers that i smile and wish i could capture that moment forever.

when i feel sad or lonely i think of rain lilies and i am reminded that it’s okay to cry. there is always goodness in the world after the clouds part. if a little pug understands, then i should, too.

the thirteen is a personal photo project that documents little things in my life that mean something special. every friday i’ll share a collection of items and a story of their importance.


imageimageimageimage


imageimageimageimage

2014. make + take: summer camp appliqués. 
materials: wooden embroidery hoops (assorted sizes), fabric scraps, needle, regular scissors, pinking shears, embroidery thread
for the hanger: leather cord, wooden bead, brass washers, fabric marker
back in sixth grade, students took one “exploratory” class each nine weeks to introduce art, woodworking, home economics, and music. i loved art (duh) and woodworking surprisingly entertained me. when i walked into the home ec classroom, i wasn’t sure what to expect, but it turned out to be a blast, too. we cooked a little and sewed a lot (girls and boys). that’s where i learned how to cross stitch.
today’s project is half appliqué, half cross stitch (more like freestyle cross stitching). an appliqué is simply a shape or picture sewn onto fabric. the theme of our baby’s room is “camp [insert his name here]” and i thought campground appliqués would be cute on the wall. first, i stretched leftover chambray/linen fabric across the hoops and secured them tightly. then i cut out the basic shapes of a tent, hedgehog, and fir trees and pinned them to the fabric.
the next part is fun— embellish the shapes with small stitches, similar to cross stitching. i created the hedgehog’s spines and claws using brown diagonal stitches. the trees’ trunks are a neat square of brown stitches. the tent took the longest, mostly because once i got started i didn’t want to stop! the colorful stripes are just back and forth running stitches. secure all your sewing with knots.
after you embellish your art, you may have to readjust the fabric on the hoop by straightening it or pulling it tighter. when you’re finished, use pinking shears to trim the excess fabric on the side of the hoop.
i made hangers for the baby’s art using leather cord. i looped a piece of cord through the embroidery hoop’s hardware and then added small brass washers from an old project. i drew blue designs on beads with a fabric marker (sharpies tend to bleed on wood) and pulled the cord through the beads. knot the top and you’ve got yourself some cute homemade appliqués!

2014. make + take: summer camp appliqués. 

materials: wooden embroidery hoops (assorted sizes), fabric scraps, needle, regular scissors, pinking shears, embroidery thread

for the hanger: leather cord, wooden bead, brass washers, fabric marker

back in sixth grade, students took one “exploratory” class each nine weeks to introduce art, woodworking, home economics, and music. i loved art (duh) and woodworking surprisingly entertained me. when i walked into the home ec classroom, i wasn’t sure what to expect, but it turned out to be a blast, too. we cooked a little and sewed a lot (girls and boys). that’s where i learned how to cross stitch.

today’s project is half appliqué, half cross stitch (more like freestyle cross stitching). an appliqué is simply a shape or picture sewn onto fabric. the theme of our baby’s room is “camp [insert his name here]” and i thought campground appliqués would be cute on the wall. first, i stretched leftover chambray/linen fabric across the hoops and secured them tightly. then i cut out the basic shapes of a tent, hedgehog, and fir trees and pinned them to the fabric.

the next part is fun— embellish the shapes with small stitches, similar to cross stitching. i created the hedgehog’s spines and claws using brown diagonal stitches. the trees’ trunks are a neat square of brown stitches. the tent took the longest, mostly because once i got started i didn’t want to stop! the colorful stripes are just back and forth running stitches. secure all your sewing with knots.

after you embellish your art, you may have to readjust the fabric on the hoop by straightening it or pulling it tighter. when you’re finished, use pinking shears to trim the excess fabric on the side of the hoop.

i made hangers for the baby’s art using leather cord. i looped a piece of cord through the embroidery hoop’s hardware and then added small brass washers from an old project. i drew blue designs on beads with a fabric marker (sharpies tend to bleed on wood) and pulled the cord through the beads. knot the top and you’ve got yourself some cute homemade appliqués!


imageimageimageimage

lovely tuesday: 30 weeks

image

look, ma! we’ve made it to the thirties! i took the three hour glucose test last wednesday and i cannot tell you how glad i felt at the end! during the test i was tired, hungry, and nauseous all at once. ugh! but i wasn’t the only mama in the room; there were at least six of us doing the same thing. i’m happy to report that my results were normal.

we ordered our crib and i spent saturday cleaning and organizing the guest room. we store our winter coats and linens in that closet and i rearranged everything to make room for baby clothes and diapers and leave hanging space for guests. i couldn’t help but marvel at the size of newborn diapers. they are teeny tiny and smell like baby powder.

i got this crazy idea last week to paint thin arrows on the wall of his room— that didn’t get far. it is impossible to get a perfectly straight line. so i scrapped the project and i decided we’ll paint one of the walls dark blue. by “we’ll” i mean michael will paint and i will watch because we make a great team. :o)

stay tuned tomorrow for a cute nursery craft!


imageimageimageimage

"when i speak of home, i speak of the place where— in default of a better— those i love are gathered together; and if that place were a gypsy’s tent or a barn, i should call it by the same good name."

— charles dickens


imageimageimageimage

Tags: wise words


imageimageimageimage