Thursday, May 23, 2013

It happened...

Today while cleaning it happened.  It took me by complete surprise.  I accidently Knocked over a glass with my belly.  There I said it.  I knew I would miss judge the distance at some point I was just hoping it would have been later rather than soon.  Oh well.  I guess now the baby bump has taken on a life of its own.

Adventures of a cyber baby shower

Since our families are all across the country and abroad a Cyber Baby Shower seemed like the best option. My Mother in Law (MIL) and Sister in Law (SIL) were going to surprise me with this the day of the shower with the help of Hunter of course.  This is where I know Hunter is smarter than I give him credit for.  He spoke up to his family and said surprising me even a week or two out would be a bad idea.  In his exact words... "I have to still live with her after this and surprises don't go over well."  He's right had he sprung this on me that day I would have been pissed.  Very, very pissed.  Thankfully he told me a little over a month out.

For those of you wondering what a Cyber baby shower is let me explain as it isn't as complicated as it seems.  The idea is to get everyone together online at the same time on "video chat."  Depending on the number of people there are "attending" there are several different sites that can be used.  If there is going to be 10 or less (including yourself in the number) I would suggest using skype.  One person pays for Skype Premium for a month that about $10 and everyone else can have a free skype account.  The person with premium would "call" everyone attending and it is just a matter of them picking up and joining in with video.  It's easier than it sounds if everyone already has an up to date free account.

The people "attending" the shower can send gifts ahead of time for you to open online as they did with me.  I simply piled the boxes in the corner and made sure to not order anything around the time of the shower as I knew I wouldn't be able to open anything that came.  In addition to the gifts, my MIL and SIL send me a few items to make the shower more festive.  A diaper cake, corsage, and items needed for the games we would play.

The diaper cake was shipped in pieces and we stacked it on the table.  I sadly don't have a pic of what it looked like as a whole because I took it apart before even thinking to take a picture of it. There was close to 80 diapers that made it up.  Then they embellished it with various baby items like teething rings and pacifiers.

The corsage was also a neat idea.  My MIL found a rattle/teething ring, attached a big ribbon and a fake flower to it.  I was supposed to pin it to my shirt but it was too heavy so I attached it to some hair ties and wore it on my wrist.  I think it worked out better on my wrist anyway.

The games were interesting.  The first was "guess the size of the belly." They asked everyone to have a roll of toilet paper handy.  They then needed to guess how many full squares without going over it took to fit around the largest part of my baby bump.  I have seen this done at actual baby showers with yarn where they you to cut a piece of string the that would fit around the belly.  The toilet paper is just something everyone has on hand.  My SIL asked everyone one by one their guesses which she wrote down.  The person who guessed the closest without going over would be mailed a prize.

the second game was to "guess the number of m&m's in the sippy cup."  Again something I had seen done before with a baby bottle.  I was sent the sippy cup pre-filled with m&m's to hold up for everyone to see. Again the took answers and mailed the winner a prize.

To kill a bit of time we did a quick tour of the nursery by walking the laptop around to show what progress had been done as likely only my MIL and possibly SIL will get a chance to see it in person.  This made me thankful that it is almost complete.

Overall it was an interesting experience.  Besides a few snags with people not knowing much about computers it worked rather well or talking all at once, it worked well.  We were able to see and hear everyone which was nice since we hardly get together being so far spread out across the country and a few being abroad.  I think this is something that might happen again as hubby and I are on the older end of our siblings and cousins.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Toys from my past

A few weeks ago my father was cleaning out the attic and called me asking if I wanted any of my old toys.  Things that stuck around year after year but never got sold.  There weren't too many that I even would have wanted.  I asked for him to send me a list what is there and anything I didn't want he could sell.  There is very little that I actually wanted.  Especially since this baby isn't a girl.  We figured holding onto a few small items won't hurt.  I figured it would interesting to share with you all what stuck around after all of these years.  Yes they date me.

Lets start with what I kept hoping for a girl in the future.

I thought that while the actual show that these "barbies" came from will be lost on any child of mine, they would be an interesting variation on the traditional barbie dolls.

Along with the 90210 barbie dolls, my dad picked out a few of the barbies that were in a good shape.  He also threw a hand full of accessories into a sandwich baggie.  He then found this barbie house that collapses down.  It fits into the roof.  Small and compact works for me.  

I don't know if these were worth saving as they now have all the Disney princesses in barbie size but oh well. These were thrown into a bag an kept.  I honestly don't know if these will stick around as there are several newer ones on the market.  I might send these to my niece when she gets a bit older.  

Oh Jenny!  was one of my favorite toys as a kid.  I however only kept the camper and a bit of the people.  No need to keep the whole "dream world" when the stickers were falling off of it and it had seen better days. 

This calico critters were compact enough to keep so they stuck around.  

The final toy I kept was a few polly pockets.  

These are the things I have no idea why they didn't get sold years ago.

There ere 6 of these.  Why on earth did I need 6 of them?

The cupcake dolls... really weren't that fun to me but everyone kept buying them for me.

Glow bugs were something I liked but they had seen far better days that is not even remotely worth keeping.

And pound puppies?  The show was good the toy wasn't.

After going through all of my toys my dad asked my brother if he wanted any of his old toy and anything I didn't want.  He took some barbies and pound puppies for his daughter and his old ninja turtles for when his son.  Then the rest of his toys got offered to me.  There weren't many in things that I remember or even hubby remembered but this is what we took.

 Construx was something hubby really liked as a kid.  There is almost a shoe box filled with the parts of several sets.

Apparently my father says these were both of our until I discovered barbies and moved on from them.  I do remember playing with them but hopefully Baby A will like them.  Oh for those of you who don't know what these are called Food Fighters.

There was about a sandwich bag full for the micro machines and two small play sets to go along with them.  Again these I am not so sure are worth keeping as they make similar items to these today.  Oh well they are small.

Being in the military we had to keep the box pretty small.  All of the toys, except the barbie house, fits into a pretty small toy chest.  overall I think its a pretty good mix of toys. Hopefully they will get some use if not with Baby A then with one of his future siblings.  If our kids don't like them then oh well they get sold at yard sale or given to a niece or nephew of ours.

Are there any toys you kept for your kids or any you wish you had kept?

Monday, May 20, 2013

Bump Update #14 - 27 weeks

Bump Update

How far along: 27 weeks, 1 day

Due Date:  August 18, 2013

Baby’s Size:   The baby is somewhere between the size of a head of Cauliflower (16in, 2.5lbs) and the size of a Rutabaga (13.6in, 2.2lbs).  He is getting bigger and bigger by the day!  Not too much longer now.

Total weight gain:
   I am holding steady at 3 pounds up.  According to my Doctor she wants me to gain no more then 10 lbs above my pre-pregnancy weight.  Hopefully that's what I do.

Sleep:   Sleep is a million times better since getting an ultrasonic humidifier.  I can finally breathe at night.  To anyone having problem with their sinuses I highly recommend this little guy.  One bottle lasts me through the night if I allow the reservoir to fill and then re fill the bottle.  I have found though that only the bottles with the large screw top similar to the smart water or a soda bottle work best.  The others leak.  

Best Moment this week:  The cyber baby shower while slightly awkward was fun.  Thankfully a bath before the shower started helped keep the puppies calm.  We didn't intend for them to share a crate but Coco's blanket wasn't quite ready in time.  When we told them crate Coco snuck into his crate and since he didn't seem to mind so we left them that way.

Miss anything:    Runny eggs.  More than anything else I miss this the most.  Guess what I want after baby is born?

Food Cravings/Aversion:   I have been craving cheddar cheese.  Nothing special just sliced cheddar on a plate.  It's a go to item I am always in the mood for.  I haven't had anything turn on me lately which is a really good thing.  I am still avoiding shrimp though.

Movement:  A ton.  This baby doesn't like to sit still for very long.  I am wondering what all the pressure is from.  I am not sure if it just the weight of everything or if I am standing longer than my stomach muscles can handle.  I'm sure its a bit of both.

Belly Picture:  Here are the belly pics from yesterday before the baby shower.  While there hasn't been much if any growth between belly pictures, I certainly feel bigger and more awkward every day.  

Labor Pain:  I am having on occasion some braxton hicks contractions.  Just random ones every now and then.

Belly Button in or out:  It is still in but much shallower than it naturally was.  Hubby keeps joking that its going to pop. I hope it doesn't.  That might freak me out a bit.  

Baby / Parenting Book I am Currently Reading:  I finished Jenny McCarthy's Belly Laughs and have moved on to here book Baby Laughs.  It's a similar format of short stories.  Very easy to breeze through.

A Peek at the Nursery: While it isn't finished, it is getting there.  I need to create and hang artwork some day soon.  More like I need to find the blank canvases to do the project.  I also need to still purchase some key items like a changing pad, sheets, a bather, a swing, etc.  This list feels like it just keeps growing.   

Looking forward to:    My next appointment is at the end of the month can't come soon enough.  The yard sale we are having to lighten the load of crap we don't use is at the end of this week.  Hubby getting block leave very soon.  We are also planning a small trip while hubby is on block leave to Houston, TX. 

This week’s Baby Task:  I already organized and put away all the baby shower gifts I now I need to find the canvas for the nursery art.  I have been saying this for a while but since we are doing a yard sale on Friday I am hoping that we will stumble upon them.  I also need to push hubby to record the books for the baby before he leaves.  We also need to do some shopping for Baby A which will likely happen going to or on our way home from Texas as the taxes are significantly cheaper than here in Louisiana.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Bump Update #13 - 26 weeks

Bump Update

How Far Along: 26 weeks, 2 day 

Due Date:  August 18, 2013

Nickname(s): Mudbug is the name we seem to use the most.  This is probably what I will use most on here but if you see Baby A pop up I am referring to the same baby.

Baby’s Size:  The baby is somewhere between the size of a cucumber (15in, 2.2lbs) and a head of lettuce (13.6in, 1.5lbs).

Total Weight Gain: I am up 2lbs as of this morning.  I figured this would be the case as my belly is getting bigger each week.

Maternity Clothes:  When not in public i am testing the limits of my non maternity clothing.  However in public I make sure to wear maternity clothing so I don't look too weird.  

Sleep:  A sleep, where have you gone.  Aside from the many bathroom break I am finding that every night at some point I will wake up for about a solid hour, then fall blissfully back asleep.  That is when I am not dealing with nausea all night long.  

Best Moment this week:  Relaxing on mother's day was joyous.  Granted I am technically not a mother yet, my hubby made sure that it was a nice day for me seeing as he will likely not be here for the next one thanks to deployment.  He took care of the dogs, let me sleep in, ran to the store to pick up the groceries that I forgot and surprised me with breakfast and flowers.  We then did a bit of work before settling into an evening of watching Big Bang and eating spinach stuffed shells.  It might not be an official mothers day but I'll take it.   Now to figure out what to do for hubby for fathers day.     

Miss anything:   The taste of a delicious runny egg or a cold cut sandwich that doesn't need to be heated.  Being able to get out of bed without feeling like I performed some crazy gymnastics move.  A good nights sleep while laying on my back.  A glass of Riesling on a cool summers evening.  Being able to make the bed without feeling winded.  

Food Cravings:  There hasn't been many cravings throughout this pregnancy but the ones I have had do seem to stick around.  Fresh cut veggies for example seem to be at the top of my craving list.  

Food Aversions:  Shrimp is on my list of food to avoid until after baby is born.  I don't want repeated bad experience to cause me to not like something anymore just because I am pregnant.

Movement:  He is moving a ton daily!  I actually get freaked out when I don't feel him move every so often.  

Gender:  He is all boy.

Memorable Moment:  Not realizing the size of my growing belly.  I not only knocked into some poor girl thinking I could fit between her and a wall, but my baby bump also knocked over a glass.  Thankfully it was empty but oh so embarrassing.

Symptoms:  The nausea is back as is the heartburn.  I don't know if it from something I am doing like eating meals that are a touch too big or eating too late.  For now I am just going to just try to deal with the symptoms.  

Belly Picture:  Once again this is a fail this week.  I forgot to take a picture of the belly.  However I must say that it is crazy the difference between the size of my belly from the morning to the evening.  It is insane.  This is one of the oddest things about pregnancy so far for me.

Baby / Parenting Book I am Currently Reading:  After a short break from reading I am back and reading Jenny McCarthy's belly laughs.  it's short stories make this a quick read.

Looking Forward to:    Next week is my cyber baby shower.  This should be interesting to say the least.

This week’s Baby Task:  I am cleaning the house room by room and preparing for a yard sale.  We have waaaaaay too much crap that just needs to go.  Throughout this process I need to find the blank canvas that I need in order to make the nursery art.  

Monday, May 13, 2013

Why buy new...

When used will do.  I think that children are in infant clothing for such a short amount of time that there is no reason to not look at getting gently used or hand me down clothing.  I grew up with hand me downs and so will this baby.  Sure I will buy many new things for Mudbug, including clothing, but the bulk of his wardrobe  will be used items.  I just can't justify spending all this money when people are selling items that maybe were worn 2-3 times that still look brand new.  The high quality of the items I got were too good to pass up on.

Personally I have a few rules when buying used kids clothing.

If its stained, torn or looks like its seen better days (for the most part) it goes.  When buying in bulk or lot of times I will attempt to resell anything that I don't like or won't use.

If at all possible I try to pick the times up from the person home.  A peek inside the house will tell you wonders about how the clothing was treated.  Is there a pet? Do they Smoke? is the place dirty?  Aside from pets in the home I have no problem passing on the lot of clothing.  Smoke is a hard thing to get out of clothing and if the house is dirty or run down, chances are its crappy clothing in ok to poor condition.  I have never regretted walking away from an item even if i went out of my way to get it.  For most people simple seeing the address and knowing what that part of town is like would work.  However where we are it is hard to tell without seeing the house because we have million dollar homes next door to trailer parks.

My final rule is to (generally speaking) not pay more than a $1 an item regardless if it's name brand or not.  This would obviously change depending on my location.  In NY where my family lives the average cost of children's clothing is about 25 cents an items so I like to follow the trend for the area i am in.  I have however spent more for a single item that was too cute to pass up.  That being said thought I also did my research looking at prices so I didn't get robbed.  I know you spent $20+ on that name brand outfit but I won't pay $10 an item, regardless of how little use it got.  To me if I am going to drop that kind of money it will likely be me investing in a few really nice items that I want to pass on from one kid to the next within my own family not for something you want to get rid of.

Granted in a box with 200+ items I could be selective about what I wanted to keep and what would go into the resale pile.  I mean nothing with stains was sticking around and I only kept a handful of onesies and bottoms that looked like that had seen better days.  After the first night of spaghetti I can use those outfits and just throw them out without worrying about ruining a good outfit.

I sorted and washed the items the day that I got them home.  I have super sensitive skin so normal tide detergent will irritate my skin rather quickly.  Then there is also the fact that I am a clean freak and like to make sure that everything is clean going into the baby's room.  I will admit that the most annoying part of this process was sorting all the items by size.  when you are looking at boxes that cover from newborn to 18 months it quickly becomes a pain in the butt.

This is the second set of clothing I bought.

Then my sister in law sent me all her baby boy clothing that my nephew outgrew already.  

Needless to say I have way more than I need after all these clothing came in.  That being said I need not for anything newborn or 0-3month items as this is the bulk of what I picked up.  Lets just hope this baby isn't huge and passes over those sizes in a day.

Friday, May 10, 2013

I'm caving in...

I haven't looked at or really wanted any makeup or beauty products in several months.  Today I caved.  Flipping through the new Ulta magazine I saw this...

This is smashbox heat wave palette.
I am in love with it.  I want i but really can't justify buying it.

Then I saw this item by tarte.  I want it.  The colors are beautiful!

And stila had to come out with some super cute new new eye shadows. 

Ugh if only I could justify buy all or even any of these.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

A peek inside the nursery!

Here is a quick peek of what the nursery currently looks like currently.  Please excuse the green tint to the picture.  With yellow walls (not our choice, gotta love rentals) and the green glow of the curtains it throws off the colors in this room. I have felt this overwhelming need for this room to be just perfect before hubby leaves for deployment which is also only weeks before baby is due.  Much more on that later though.  For now lets focus on my nesting.

Since this is the first baby we needed to pick up furniture.  With any and all luck this is the only baby furniture we will need to purchase regardless of the number of children we have.  We had a long debate over whether or not to get a crib and as you can see my vote won out since I will be home with the baby.  We love this crib.  Ok I love it more but that's ok.  Regardless it works for what we need and didn't cost us an arm and a leg.  Thank You for sales at Babies r us.   The glider and ottoman were also on sale that day as well so we picked it up.  The cushions are a tan color if you were wondering.

This is the second layout of the room.  Once we got this monster of a toy chest we needed to make space for it so this is what we came up with.  Oh by the way that isn't really a toy chest.  It is actually one of those patio storage units that is meant to hold cushions and whatnot.  Hubby came up with the brilliant idea of using it as a toy chest because it is light and doubles as extra seating in the room.  It is designed to hold a 250lb person so I doubt there is anything this baby will do to it that could do much damage.  Overall I am in love with this new purchase.

While you can't really see it below is our crib bedding.  Thank you Target for your super cheap prices!  I hate to pay full price for anything and baby items are at the top of that list.  They are used for such a short period of time that it kills me to pay sooo much for something that will only be used for a few months.  Ok hopefully the bedding will last longer as it can move up with the baby into toddler bedding, but you get my point.

Not only were baby items beginning to fill the nursery but they seemed to be taking over part of the living room too.  Between prepping cloth diapers and washing the used clothing I bought you would think we were having triplets or something.  I assure that we aren't having triplets.  Rather the clothing I picked up ranges from newborn to 18 months.  Sadly what is pictured below needed to go somewhere.  That is when I decided it was time to start working on the closet.

More to come....

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

crafting and the nursery - Clothing Dividers

I have dozens of crafts I would love to be able to do for the nursery.  Sadly I will not have time for them all so I have had to narrow them down and put some on the back burner for the next baby.  The first craft I decided to venture into was clothing dividers.  I did tons of research to find ones pre-made but they were either too simple or far too expensive for my liking.  So off to the craft store I went.

I picked up 11 door hangers, various pre-made wooden animals, paint to match the nursery bedding, and some paint brushes.  At home I had foam brushes, a plastic paint palette (paper plates would have worked too), a high temp hot glue gun and glue sticks.  Total I would say I paid maybe $18.  Most of the items were on sale which helped out a ton.

Above are the different wooden animals I picked up.  

I started off by having my husband cut a notch in the side so they would be able to hang on the rod in the closet.  Sadly I also needed to angle the top piece as it hit the shelf that is a bit too close to the rod.  Gotta love rental homes.  Once He finished that I look some light sand paper to the door hangers to smooth out all of the edges so nothing would stick to the clothing.

Much like the picture above I laid out all the door hangers and places on animal on each.  I then decided what colors I wanted each of them painted and marked them with a dab of paint.  

I put the animals aside and began to paint the door hangers.  The wooden hangers absorbed far more paint than I had anticipated.  It took 3-4 some even 5 coats of paint to make them look good to me.

Next I wrote the various sizes below the hangers.  I wanted to use the most common sizes (newborn - 4T) I easily could have done less but I had the materials so I just went ahead and made them all.  Sure enough I played around with the order of the colors and what animals I wanted where. 

Since the sizes of infant clothing vary depending on company, I decided to include the single size in the with its smaller counterpart.  For example I have found that items labeled 3 months really range in size from 2 months to 4 months.  Since they are more of an in between size I put items with the smaller size.  3 months went with my 0-3month clothing verse the 3-6month clothing.  In the closet I put those items in the back of the section.  Yes I am particular about organization.  

Once again I moved the animals off the hangers and began writing the sizes one the front and back of the hangers.  The side showing above is the back of them.  I wrote the sizes larger on the back as the animals would be going on the front of them.

A closer look at the front.  For some you can see I put the animal on the hanger to see where the size would fit best.

Lastly, I used my high temp glue gun to add the animals.   High temp glue guns work best for adhering a wooden items together.  Add a significant amount of hot glue to the back of each animal and press firmly into place.  I allowed it a minute to cool before I removed my hand.  Note too much glue will spill out and look sloppy.  Too little and it wont hold well.  

The blue, yellow and green colors are all the same among the pictures, there is just horrible lighting in my living room that makes them look differently among the pictures.  This pictures is the closest to the true colors.

Here is the finished product.  I let them dry overnight and then hung them up in the closet.  If I had clothing hung up then I would have shown you a pic of them in the closet but you can use your imagination for that.

Things I wish I had done differently...

I wish I had painted the door hangers white before painting them the various colors.  It would have cut down on the amount of colorful paint used and allowed the colors to be more vibrant.  The green color is a prefect example of that.  It is a far lighter color than what it turned out to be because I did not prime them with white first.

I wish I had added another color to that matched with the crib bedding, like a pale orange.  I think it could have added a little something to it.

While this isn't a terribly big thing I would have used a stencil or a stamp of some sort to write the sizes on the dividers.  It would have looked cleaner.  However my hand writing didn't come out too terrible.

I wish I hadn't done so many!  Yup I said it.  I did all the most common American sizes.  I however don't think I needed to do as many as I did though.  I could have stopped at 18-24 month clothing and have been perfectly content with those.

Barbie Hair Fixes Part 1

Let's jump right on into it.   Every doll hair fix tutorial I could find started with brushing out the dolls hair.  It may look worse...