Tuesday, January 31, 2012

DIY Flower Pens

My gosh, it has been a busy 2 weeks!  Over the past 14 days we have finished planning a baby shower, completed our birthing classes, worked 80 hours (x2), made several “poms” as well as about 60 flower pens.  Our baby shower was this past weekend and it was WONDERFUL!  I plan to post about that special day later but first I have some catching up to do.  I’m writing tonight from El Paso, Texas where I am currently stationed for a little business trip.  G is in ABQ attending a breastfeeding class, which I am so sad to miss.  Looking on the bright side – being held up in a hotel makes for good blogging time! 

As I mentioned, we just had our baby shower.  Our fabulous mamas hosted the blessed event and it was everything we thought it would be and more!  When we all got together to discuss the theme and ideas and such, I had one small request.  I really wanted to be a part of the crafting and d├ęcor making.  I myself have hosted baby showers for several friends over the years and I LOVE all of the creativity that is involved in celebrating the arrival of baby!  Luckily our moms agreed to let me help and from there the creative juices began to flow. 

I’ve always loved the idea of getting “mommy advice” from experienced moms so I thought that rather than just leaving pens on the tables with advice cards, we could make flower pens.  If you too like this idea and want to do the same, here’s how :)

Supplies Needed:

- Regular ballpoint pens
- Floral tape
- Silk flowers
- Wire cutters
- Flowerpots
- Glue gun & glue sticks
- Ribbon           

How to:

1. Cut your flowers off the stem, leaving about 1 inch.

2. Remove (and discard) your pen lid.  Hold your flower next to your pen and use your floral tape to attach your flower to your pen.

3. Because floral tape can look translucent, wrap the tape around the pen to the ballpoint and then back up again to the flower.  Once you get to the flower, just rip the tape and press it against your pen until it sticks.

4. And that’s it!  You’re done!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

3/52: Baby shower crafting

Want to join Project 52?  Click here for details.


When you hear the term Babymoon, most people think of soon-to-be parents taking a relaxing vacation or a quick weekend getaway before baby arrives.  Well, that wasn’t the case here.  For months now, G has begged me to go to a girl fight with her.  My response has always been – I grew up in the Valley so I’ve seen enough fighting for one lifetime, lol!  Despite my efforts to avoid the violence, she wore me down and I agreed to join her.  We had planned to take a short trip for our Babymoon but with everything that has gone on in these past 2 months, going on vacation just wasn’t in the cards for us.  Instead, we decided to create our own version of a Babymoon (or last hurrah!) and invite some friends to a female headlining, MMA cage fight this weekend!

The food equivalent of beer ;)

We had such a BLAST!  This was the first time either of us went to a fight and I now understand why people love it so much.  By the end of the night (and 8 matches) we were yelling and jumping up and down like a bunch of crazy fans.  We ended the night laughing our butts off at the Hard Rock Casino lounge.  It was a perfect, much needed night out.  Thank goodness for friends, they’re such a blessing!  

Guess what?  As of tomorrow we are officially 8 months!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

What a day!

Tuesday was a total whirlwind!  Our morning started with work followed by our first appointment with Gracie’s plastic surgeon (PS) and finally we ended our evening with birthing class and a tour of the hospital.  The appointment with our PS went as good as could be expected.  While we did have to wait for quite some time in his office (feeling as nervous as ever) while he finished up a previous appointment, it gave us time to admire his many awards and degrees – 2 of which are from Harvard!  We’ve heard so much about how gifted he is and how great he is with kids, so it was a bonus to see how accomplished he is as well.  The appointment went pretty fast and it was a lot of information to take in.  Thankfully his practice provided us with a detailed packet with every Q&A possible as well as a video on cleft bottle feeding and a care package with different bottles to try with Gracie.
We learned a little bit more about how our birthing experience is going to be different than the norm.  We learned that Georgia won’t be able to have immediate tummy time once baby is born and that following birth, Grace will need to be checked out to confirm whether or not she has a cleft palate in addition to the lip amongst other things.  In addition to this, there is a high likelihood that Georgia will be unable to breastfeed so we’ll need to get her pumping as soon as Gracie is out so that we can feed baby girl within the hour.  Our birthing instructor did tell us that we will only be separated for a short time and that I can accompany the baby if that’s what Georgia prefers.  After talking about all of these things we both decided that it’s very important that our little girl doesn’t spend her first hour on this earth with total strangers, so I will be right by her side.  I was super excited to hear that I can have skin to skin bonding with Gracie while they are finishing up with G.  Looking on the bright side, we were very happy to hear that this important bonding time isn’t something that our little lady is going to miss out on :)
The hospital tour was pretty exciting as well!  Our tour started at the front entrance of the hospital and made stops at the registration area, various front desks, the newborn viewing room (where we got to see adorable newborn babies!), then the birthing room and ended in the recovery room.  I was of course the only tool taking pictures, shocker ;)  I just can’t believe that we will be headed there in just a few weeks to meet our daughter.  I actually didn’t sleep very much that night because I kept running through the process in my head… 
Here is a picture of the delivery room!
Where they will get Gracie all cleaned up :)
Now this was my favorite part of the tour – the gigantic tub!  I’m a water baby and I recently found out that I can get in the tub with G to help her try to relax.  I already know which bathing suit I’m going to wear, YAY!
This is where mama will sleep while mommy recovers…maybe. 
I do realize that I may not get to sleep at all :)

How your baby’s growing: 31 Weeks

This week your baby measures over 16 inches long.  She weighs about 3.3 pounds (try carrying four naval oranges) and is heading into a growth spurt.  She can turn her head from side to side, and her arms, legs, and body are beginning to plump out as needed fat accumulates underneath her skin.  She’s probably moving a lot, too, so you may have trouble sleeping because your baby’s kicks and somersaults keep you up.  Take comfort: all this moving is a sign that your baby is active and healthy.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

We’re 30ish Weeks…

I say 30ish because our due date has changed once again.  In our first OB appointment back in July, we were told that baby girl was due to arrive on March 16th.  In our next appointment that date changed to March 17th… then the 20th… then the 22nd, and now we’re back to March 20th.  In our appointment last week, our Perinatalogist seemed a bit perplexed when she said that we were due on the 20th and I replied that we’re not due until the 22nd.  She looked at me like “oh really, and where did you get your MD” ha!  I tried explaining that our date has changed several times but that based on the baby’s measurements our OB gave us the due date of 3/22.  She then went on to explain that in our situation we know exactly how far along we are because we know exactly when G was inseminated… makes sense :)

So now we know that Gracie is officially due to make her appearance on the 20th of March and that G will be 31 weeks on Monday.  In the end I guess it doesn’t really matter because according to Gretchen our birthing instructor, “there really is no such thing as a due date, there’s just a due month.”  The good news is that the appointment went great!  Baby girl is measuring right on track and she is weighing in around 3.5lbs.  Georgia passed her second glucose test and lost another 3lbs, which is just crazy, but all of our doctor’s say she is doing awesome.  Gracie’s heartbeat was 147bmp and SHE HAS HAIR!  The doctor showed us her little peach fuzz and it may have been the most adorable thing ever.  It’s just nuts to think that she can now see things and hear my voice and has hair AND could possibly be here in as little as 6 weeks!

Week 31, here we come!

How your baby’s growing: 30 Weeks

Your baby’s about 15.7 inches long now, and she weighs almost 3 pounds like a head of cabbage.  A pint and a half of amniotic fluid surrounds her, but that volume will decrease as she gets bigger and takes up more room in your uterus.  Her eyesight continues to develop, though it’s not very keen; even after she’s born, she’ll keep her eyes closed for a good part of the day.  When she does open them, she’ll respond to changes in light but will have 20/400 vision – which means she can only make out objects a few inches from her face.  (Normal adult vision is 20/20).

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Let the birthing classes begin!

WARNING: this post involves talk of vaginas, placenta and other various lady parts.  Proceed with caution.

Last week we started our birthing classes and I would have to say that it wasn’t really what I expected.  I thought that we would be in a room with a ton of couples, a nurse like instructor and that it would involve a lot of heavy breathing while sitting pretzel style on the floor.  As it turns out, our instructor is much more of a hippie (which I like) and there are only 3 couples including us.  I guess that this is what happens when you base your assumptions on television shows and Lifetime made for TV movies…

On our first night, all of the couples introduced themselves and talked a little about their expected babies.  Everyone seemed very nice with the exception of one woman who didn’t smile once and didn’t seem to even like her husband all that much (considering she wouldn’t look at him or introduce him – yikes!).  So far I really like our instructor.  She is a bit of a comedian and appears to be very knowledgeable which is great.  On night one, we went step-by-step through the birthing process from the first contraction to delivery and I’ve got to say – when they show you the ENTIRE process it’s a bit overwhelming.  Sheesh!  I guess I never realized what all was involved in becoming completely dilated!  We talked a lot about natural birth and even watched a video.  Now this is where the warning comes in… there is a reason why TLC films all baby birthing footage from the top of the bed.  The reason is that if you’re an expectant mother and you see what actually happens to the female vagina during birth, you may change you mind!  I mean, I’ve always thought that women are amazing, but after seeing what our bodies can naturally do I’m convinced that we should rule the world.

It was pretty awesome to watch G as she watched the movie.  She was like, “oh… what is that… how can she… oh my God.”  The good news is that she actually had a reaction while all the other husbands sat through the film in utter silence, ha!  The one thing that the video didn’t show was the delivery of the placenta which for some reason fascinates Georgia.  She wants to know when you deliver the placenta, what the placenta looks like and if it hurts when it comes out.  We’re all interested in different parts of the process I suppose, lol! 

When the movie was over we each got to take turns delivering a baby doll through a hand stitched uterus.  I couldn’t help but laugh as I delivered a doll that looked exactly like my sister’s favorite doll when she was little.  All and all, it was a good time and I really think that me and G learned a thing or two which is the point, right?!  Tonight we go back for round two!  I’m ready!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

1/52: Grandpa's Shop

My friend Elena recently told me about a project she is starting this year called Project 52.  With her version of Project 52 she plans to post a photo a week that represents her family and photography skills.  She has invited me to join in the journey posting a photo each week with a simple title representing the photo.  I’ve decided that my photos are going to be centered on happiness.  Any pictures that I take or come across that make me happy will become a part of my project!  If you wish to do the same, post a link to your blog, FB album or any other site that you use to store photos each week. 

Here is my first of 52 pictures: Grandpa’s shop

Monday, January 2, 2012

29 Weeks: New Year, New Trimester!

:: Georgia @ 29 weeks ::

We are in the final homestretch – only 11 weeks to go!  I can’t believe that we have already been through 29… holy moly!  I am so excited for January that I can hardly stand it.  This month we start our child birthing classes and we meet with our plastic surgeon for the first time.  I think we are both going to feel a huge sense of relief once we’ve had the opportunity to speak with him.  All we keep hearing is what an amazing doctor he is and we’re ready to find that out for ourselves.  This month we also have our baby shower, WOOT!  My sis-in-law had her baby shower with Rudy about 3 weeks before she was due and she has always said that she regretted waiting that long.  She said that she felt tired, bloated and not so cute and that if she could do it again, she would have had her shower around 33 weeks.  We took her advice and come the end of the month, our mamas are hosting a shower for us!  We are so grateful and super excited :)

Things feel like they are really coming together.  The nursery is nearly finished; we just need a few more things that are on our registry.  We are registered for our baby classes and all doc appointments are set.  Daycare arrangements are in place as well as our maternity leave plans.  We were originally going to take the full 3 months to be home with Gracie, but now that we know we’ll need to take time off in her first 9 months for one and possibly two surgeries, we are only going to take 2 months of FMLA initially.  We have all the cloth diapers we’re going to need and we’ve started to purchase baby wipes, lotion and head-to-toe wash.  The only thing that I’m not sure about and haven’t purchased is baby powder.  So here’s my question for all you moms – do people still use baby powder for anything?  That may be a silly question, but I honestly have no idea.  Anywho, below is an update on our little baby cakes.  
Happy New Year and cheers to 2012 and all the joy that it will surely bring. 

How your baby’s growing: 29 Weeks  

Your baby now weighs about 2 1/2 pounds (the size of a butternut squash) and is a tad over 15 inches long from head to heel.  Her muscles and lungs are continuing to mature, and her head is growing bigger to make room for her developing brain.  To meet her increasing nutritional demands, you’ll need plenty of protein, vitamins C, folic acid, and iron.  Because her bones are soaking up lots of calcium, be sure to drink your milk (or find another good source of calcium, such as cheese, yogurt, or enriched orange juice).  This trimester, about 250 milligrams of calcium are deposited in your baby’s hardening skeleton each day.   

Just a few Christmas pictures ;)

Grace and George just stopped by to drop off a few Christmas pictures and I realized that I didn’t post any Christmas Eve or Christmas day pics.  I’m slowly coming to the conclusion that I too have “baby brain” these days… As usual I took about 100 pictures so rather than post the longest post ever, here is our 2011 Christmas montage.  Better late than never I guess!

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