Thursday, September 13, 2012

Our Care-o-leena Grace



She was born on Father's Day.

Carolina Grace

June 17, 2012

6 pounds 11 ounces

18.5 inches

Perfect!

We are so blessed and enjoying every second of her

...for almost 3 months now. 

xoxoxo


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Sentimental Girl Nursery

Our nursery is complete (except for the baby) and I'm so excited to share the photos with you.  This has been a labor of love and so much fun to get ideas and see them come to fruition.  

One of my favorite parts is the wooden monogram.  These came from Kygracedesigns on Etsy.  Originally I saw it on Pinterest through God Bless Our Nest.  The paint color is Romance by Sherwin Williams and I got that inspiration from her nursery too.  The funny thing about the monogram is that I haven't even fully committed to her name until I see her.  I'm indecisive.



The closet was painstakingly put in by future Daddy G.  It wasn't as easy as we thought it was going to be, but what is when it comes from Ikea!  We used their Antonius system for part of the closet and the other side we cut shelves at Home Depot.  This is a tiny closet and it was in desperate need of a storage system.  We chose something that will grow with her.  After those itty bitty clothes get bigger, the rods can accommodate shirts and pants.  

Everyone thinks that this is a ton of clothes but what you see are two years worth of sizes.  A friend of mine had a yard sale and sold me the majority of the clothes I have from 9 months to 24 months.  


How cute are all the little tiny shoes?  Some of them were on the diaper cake at my shower, some were given to us by friends and we scored some from a yard sale of a very stylish baby.


This dresser used to be dark and we painted it gray. We go into the nursery and just stare at it because it was quite a process and we are thrilled with how it turned out.  I've had it forever and we just bought new knobs from Anthropologie to make it more girly.  I got the Audrey Hepburn print on our honeymoon and the Eiffel Tower lamp is from Target.


I adore children's books!  I was thrilled to get a lot of books at my shower and I am so excited to read most of these books for the first time.  Somehow I missed out on reading (or having read to me) the early children's books, but I am looking forward to instilling a love of reading in our little girl as well as catching up myself on the classics.


This side of the room has our gallery wall of pictures.  We used the frames that used to be in our living room.  I printed out some free printables and kept some pictures that are special to me.  The star in the corner came from my friend Renee who knows I love pink and gave it to me when I moved to Texas.  It's going to be a great night light.  The cubes furniture came from Ikea and it makes a great changing table as well as storage.  


Here is a closer look at some of the prints.  A map of Puerto Rico is close to G's heart.  There are some Bible verse inspired art prints as well as a Corgi silhouette, photo strip of G and me and picture of my Mom and me.  The girl banner is from the gender reveal party.


I cross-stitched this when I was in high school.  It took me hours and hours.  I never finished it but my Mom had it framed anyway and I love having it there!  I always wanted a red headed little girl because I adored Anne of Green Gables and Pippi Longstocking!


These shelves came from Pottery Barn kids.  It's full of special little things; a Belkie bear my Nanny gave me, a Daughter poem that my Mom gave me, and a Paddington Bear that my brother gave me in 4th grade.  I also have a piggy bank that you can't see from probably before kindergarden.  I made the little dress that is hanging there.  A friend made me the quilt that is draped over the chair and it fits perfectly in the nursery.  I adore it!


I've been busy sewing lots of things lately.  I made loads of burp cloths, a couple of dresses, wash cloths and a blanket.  I don't think I've told you that G got me a sewing machine for our anniversary last September.  It was a wonderful gift and has come in really handy!


Here is one of the burp cloths that I monogrammed.


Oh sweet, sentimental value...This is a picture of G and me on our first date.  He bought me that tacky frame and it's just the perfect kitsch for here.


I made a baby book and this is the page where we predict what she is going to be like.  I downloaded the template from Young House Love.

This is a shot of most of the room.  A friend helped me make the gray chevron crib skirt and I made the pillow.  The pink chair is one of two that I've had for a long time.  It was so meant to be that I have a little girl!  The purple chair and ottoman was generously given to us by a couple that we are friends with from church. It's so comfy and we were so grateful.




This is a another shot of the closet and dresser.  You can see the storage cubes from Ikea in the top of the closet.  These are handy for clothing that isn't the right size yet.


I lined the dresser drawers with different patterns of paper so it would be cheerful when we open them.


The drawer organizers came from Ikea.


These are my bags packed and ready for the hospital!!


Monday, June 11, 2012

Due In 10 Days

38 Weeks and 4 Days Pregnant


So happy and I already know I'm going to miss not being pregnant.   
I love to feel her kicking inside of me.  


I am so blessed to have experienced the joy that is pregnancy.  
God has been so good to me.  

Monday, June 04, 2012

So Many Changes!



Life has been a whirlwind these past few months.  Besides the happy news in my last post about being pregnant, we have made so many changes around here.  The biggest change is that we bought a new house.  We also decided to rent our old house which was a time intensive and sometimes amusing process.  We bought a new car and sold my old car that had just short of 250,000 miles on it.  G wouldn't let me keep driving it because of the baby.  There have been endless lists of things to do every week and slowly everything is getting accomplished.  These are the biggies that have been going on but as you can imagine, there are so many details in between.

I wish that I had written about the whole moving process along the way to share with you.  There was so much decluttering involving Craigslist, Freecycle and charity shops.  I tried to do so much before moving, but even after moving we had a room full of stuff that we dubbed the Hoarder Room.  Sometimes we like to watch that show just to inspire ourselves to tackle the piles that were left.  G likes to put his hands up like a camera and make the creepy music sounds from the show.  We were never that bad, but  I'm happy to report that this room is almost empty now.  It was another stripping of some sentimental things, and some things I just gave up and put them away.  I still can't let go of my prom dress!

Since we found out we are having a girl, I was so excited that a few of my sentimental childhood possessions can end up in her sweet nursery.  She can play with my Cabbage Patch dolls and anything else she would like.  It's come full circle and there is no worry about her messing them up or passing them down.  She may not even like them since she will have her own things.  I hope she does though!

One of the main reasons we wanted to move was to be in a one story instead of a two story.  We had been looking for almost a year online when we found the perfect house.  It is a one and a half story with a media/sewing room upstairs.  We love it!  It is a bigger house and three bedrooms like our old house, however the closets are so much smaller.  This is a house made for a minimalist, which I am not by the way, but I am always aspiring to have less and it's a perfect reminder to have fewer possessions stuffed back in the closet.  Adding baby stuff to the mix has been really interesting!

My pregnancy is going so smoothly that I can't complain at all.  I haven't had any problems and I'm so thankful for this little girl that moves around all the time inside of me.  We have been working on her nursery for over a couple months now and just finished it.  I can't wait to show you pictures.  It was so fun to put together a mixture of old and new along with items that were given to us.  Here's a little preview.  This is just the girl part of the banner from our gender reveal party.



Sunday, February 19, 2012

Gender Reveal Party: Boy or Girl Theme

We decided to do a gender reveal party to properly celebrate this little life inside of me.  This may seem like overkill to some people but we have waited so long for this baby, 40 months to be exact!  It was so fun to find out the gender with our friends who have prayed with us and walked with us through this journey.  G's brother and nephew were there, but the rest of the family lives too far away so we videoed the moment for them.


For dinner, we had a selection of five soups.  I made one and four friends brought the others.  It was the easiest way to feed so many and still make it interesting.  70 people RSVP'd and I think around 60 ended up making it.

We had a couple signs where people could cast their votes on whether it is a boy or girl, and also a list of names.


There were some small touches of pink and blue, as well as the boy or girl theme.


I couldn't find pink and blue m&ms so I decided to just go with plain or peanut, and thought it went with the boy or girl theme nicely!


Teeny tiny bathing suits for a baby due in June!


Posing with the baby bump at 22 weeks.  People could wear pink or blue if they wanted to display their vote that way.  I attempted a blue dress but it just looked like I was indecisive.  I wasn't though, I was definitely feeling boy!


I made a banner that says "Boy or Girl" to display the theme for the party.






I couldn't stop gazing at the cake when we picked it up.   They are just tiny baby shoes on top from Janie and Jack.  The cake was huge!  We had 60 people there and still had half left.  It was wonderful and I highly recommend Take the Cake if you are in the Houston area-best cake ever.



This is the long version of the video with my speech included.  Below is the short version.  I hate seeing myself talk, but I wanted to share it here anyway just to share our story.



We could have found out 9 weeks ago, so this culmination of anticipation was palpable to me.


 Surprised!


It's a girl!
Shocked!






Hope you enjoyed the pictures and videos!  Have any of you had a gender reveal party?  It was so fun and I think even doing a simpler version would be sweet.  

-xoxo
Jennifer

Due date is June 21, 2012

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Dreams Do Come True




Psalm 103:1-5


  Praise the LORD, my soul;
   all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
 Praise the LORD, my soul,
   and forget not all his benefits—
 who forgives all your sins
   and heals all your diseases,
 who redeems your life from the pit
   and crowns you with love and compassion,
 who satisfies your desires with good things
   so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Project 333 Updated and Over



If anyone was wondering how Project 333 ended up, I'm here to report my experience with it.  I'm afraid it might be a little anti-climatic though because it wasn't a very earth shaking experiment to me.  I just want to highlight a few points that I learned during the three months.

The most helpful exercise was putting away all the other clothes that I wasn't going to wear.  In doing this, I noticed that I needed a lot of storage space to do so.  I thought I didn't have that many clothes to begin with, but apparently I was wrong.  Clothes can hang there and be invisible to me if I don't wear them.  They really are wasted space, hanging and stored.  After the project I felt a renewed vigor for cleaning out those things, which is a great benefit!  I opened my eyes to the excess.

For the first two months I was breezing along wearing mostly summer clothes, but when winter hit, I stumbled a bit.  I had saved some of my 33 items to add in winter clothes, but I found that I got bored very quickly.  If I were doing this on my own rules, I would do less clothes each season, but change them out after the weather changes.  The majority of my shirts were summer because I live in Houston and I was very limited with sweaters.  I managed through until we went home for Christmas and I got a couple of new things while I was there.  

The jewelry, shoes and coat limitations didn't bother me at all, except I felt that I was neglecting some pretty things that I could have been wearing.  It actually felt a little wasteful to me not to wear them.

Not shopping had an interesting effect in my mind.  On one hand I was happy to not be looking for anything, but at the same time I missed not being in the pursuit of something.  It felt like I was letting go of a task that kept me entertained to a degree.  It's not like I'm a huge shopper, but I find it fun to browse online or be hunting for the perfect something or another.  

Having lived in NC, I am four seasons kind of girl.  I religiously change out clothes for each season.  Since going through this challenge, I realized how nice it would be to have a year round wardrobe.  I'm not sure that I will do this, but I feel that the key is to have so little that your closet still doesn't look crammed with all your clothes.  Giving up this ritual would be a little strange for me though so the idea is there but still in the back of my mind.

Overall, I do think that this is a beneficial experiment for learning how much you really need in your wardrobe.  Even though it sounds extreme, 33 items is really quite sufficient for a season of clothes.  Haven't you secretly wanted your closet to look like those at the Container Store?  I have and this was my chance!

Image from Container Store.

Carolina's Fifth Birthday

We have been busy celebrating someone's much anticipated birthday around here!  Carolina has been longing for five since her classmates ...