Thursday, September 29, 2011

21 Weeks -- My Beautiful Boy!

I am in the middle of the second trimester and things seem to be going really well. Our precious baby boy is moving about a lot and I love feeling him inside of me. I don't know how I'll ever share him with anyone. He is one incredible little guy and loved by so many already. 

How far along? 21 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: -1 lbs -- not bad considering the baby alone weighs over 1 lb!!
Maternity clothes? More and more each week, I'm afraid. I even got a few more shirts and pants from the Target Maternity section yesterday. I guess I'm going to need them soon!
Sleep: Sleeping great, minus the potty breaks and the bizarre dreams that keep on keepin' on.
Best moment this week: Finding out that Baby Brown is a Boy and seeing his little face. Amazing! And, having my best friend and parents here with us to share the excitement.
Miss Anything? Not really anything major... fresh mozzarella a little bit this week.And, I snuck a sip of Heather's regular coke the other day and it was so good... bad idea! (But J later surprised me with.... )

Movement: More and more and more each day! And not just flutters anymore! It's fun to see what foods get him moving and what sounds trigger his response. Just last night, Benton woke him up!
Food cravings: Egg and cheese muffins, I guess. And, well, maybe eggs in general. 
Anything making you queasy or sick: Bacon, prenatals and brushing my teeth! Still. What fun!
Have you started to show yet: I guess I finally have to admit that in some outfits, I am starting to look pregnant! 
Gender prediction: Boy... we were right!
Labor Signs: No 
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy!
Looking forward to: Having J feel the baby kick from the outside! I so so so want him to feel this! I wish I could share with him what it is like. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

Parents Make it All Better!

My mom and dad returned Friday. They always seem to swoop in and make everything better, more manageable, more done!

My dad has given Jared energy and productivity when he was flat out exhausted. Together, they installed a new front door along with new trim, bought and moved in a new rocker for the living room for Baby Brown, finished painting the wainscoting in the nursery, moved and finished the outlets in the nursery, put in new blinds in the nursery, touched up in the nursery, moved some furniture into the nursery, hung all new drywall in the previously un-finished section of the basement that will soon become our office/sewing area and taped and mudded the drywall. They had to wait for it to dry so they decided to rest (and my dad watched the Colt's game).

My mom cleaned, cooked, did laundry, helped me spruce up the decorations in my bedroom, helped me sort through my jewelry (a huge undertaking), made 1 of 2 dog blankets for the boys for Christmas (I made the other), helped me find all of the baby stuff stuck in our other guest bedroom for the nursery, and knew when to tell me to take a nap when I was pooped.

Aren't parents the best? Even with all of that, we've managed to go to some great new restaurants, eat some of mom's great home cooking, relax and hang out, celebrate my mom's birthday, watch two movies, get oil changed in the car, and I read an entire book Saturday morning. Yes, really, I think I got sucked in!

I love having my parents here. They've really helped us knock out some projects. Plus, they'll be here when we find out if Baby Brown is a boy or a girl. Seems everyone is still pretty 50/50!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Happy Fall!

My dear husband wanted me to share this recipe in honor of fall!

2 bags small marshmallows
2 box goldengrahams (small) or 1 box family size
1/2 stick butter
1 bag milk chocolate chips
Vanilla 2 Tablespoons if desired

Melt butter and marshmallows 2 minutes in microwave safe bowl
Mix by hand until smooth, add vanilla
Add goldengrahams slowly until all mixed
Let cool 2 minutes
Mix in chocolate chips
Put into buttered/greased 9x13 pan
Press into pan with greased hands
Decorate if desired, candy pumpkins work great for fall!

Enjoy the smore deliciousness!  Yum!!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

20 Weeks -- HALFWAY THERE!

I'm told that the baby is longer than a banana and weighs about a pound now. CRAZY! I am feeling Baby Brown a lot these days... especially after I've eaten and when I lay down at night or naptime... at least I think what I'm feeling is Baby Brown. A few times I've felt a jab or a flop like the baby is kicking, stretching, rolling over or something in there! But those are rare.. most of the time its still flutters in there.. like I've trapped a butterfly in my lower belly.

Here we go...
How far along? 20 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: -5 lbs -- find out next week the truth!!
Maternity clothes? I'm in this weird in-between stage when most of my non-stretchy normal clothes are too small but the maternity clothes I bought are still too big. Regardless, I'm rocking a maternity sweater today just because!
Stretch marks? No
Sleep: Sleeping great, minus waking up to pee every night a couple of times. I love how J always asks if I'm ok... yes, honey, just have to pee for the 50 millionth time tonight. :)
Best moment this week: Napping with Phin and Oliver.
Miss Anything? I miss having sprouts on my Jimmy Johns. There I said it. It is my big request once this baby is born! 
Movement: Yep, feeling it after every meal (especially Chinese food) and before bed.
Food cravings: Egg and cheese muffins (homemade, from the grocery store, McDonald's) -- I love them. I guess this has been my real craving all along. I HAVE to have one every morning. And by HAVE to, I mean it is not an option. Once J realized how serious this was we found a healthier and less expensive option at the grocery store that I heat up every day. Sad news... I'm out so a trip to Target is in my immediate future. Well, that or the McD's drive thru!  
Anything making you queasy or sick: The smell of Bacon... well, just the smell of Bacon on pizza. Ugh! Nasty. Still getting sick with the prenatal and the teeth brushing... Phin is my support for these occasions. He always camps out beside me to help me get through.
Have you started to show yet: I still don't think so... but last night J started poking my belly and he said "WHOA" so maybe I am?
Gender prediction: Boy
Labor Signs: No 
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy!
Looking forward to: Finding out the gender of Baby Brown early next week!!! :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Garden Update -- First Frost!

I just realized that I haven't given you an update on our garden in a really, really long time. Well we harvested, harvested, harvested and harvested some more. Up until our first frost of the season, we were still reaping tons of regular and cherry tomatoes, chard, broccoli and bell peppers. We had to harvest most everything that was out there before the two big frosts hit last week.

In doing so, the only producing veggie still remaining are my brussel sprouts. I've already harvested some, but I'm saving the majority of them until they plump up a little more.

How did your garden do this year?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Nursery Details

We are designing the nursery to be very gender neutral. Even though we are finding out what we're having NEXT week, we wanted the basics to be very gender neutral. Although, I'm already planning ways to incorporate navy or pink depending.

Here are the inspirations I used to draw ideas from. And, yes, I do realize that some are bathrooms. I'm unconventional, ok? (Images from Pinterest)


Using these ideas, we went with a pale green for the walls, bright white wainscoting, and a Jenny Lind crib.

Of course I don't like any crib sets you can buy in a store, so I have dear loved ones that are making me some! The nursery rocker will be reupholstered in an abstract gray print. The crib set will be done in this to incorporate the orange.

I've asked for a special blanket and quilt to be made, too!

And we found this mobile for the nursery, too, since we're using gray as an accent. We registered for it, I hope we get it! How cute!!?! I love it! If push comes to shove, I think I could make one...

I also bought this off etsy to go at the entrance of the room. It is just perfect. Not only the verse but the colors, too. It was meant to be.

I'm sure as we get closer and closer, it will all start to fall into place a little bit more. But we're off to a good start.

Monday, September 19, 2011

What a Weekend!

This weekend was a stay-at-home weekend to get things accomplished type of weekend.

But did we? No, not really. Well, we kind of did but not what all I wanted. You know what I mean?

This weekend turned into a shopping, eating and napping kind of weekend. A rather lazy and blah weekend. It rained most of the weekend and is still raining today.

We had a few errands to run but it ended up taking us bits of Friday, Saturday and Sunday to get everything done errand wise. We had church Sunday morning. J and I went to his work on Sunday to help get him ready for his huge event this week. We had to make two trips, actually, but the boys got to ride along one time. The Packers played which meant we got a mint shake from Culver's for $1! Yum!! I did manage to get some household things done -- cut dog food, cleaned fish, dishes X's 3, chili made for work this week, picked up the house, laundry, etc -- but I had a lot more on my agenda to do. What do you do when this little guy keeps making you go to bed to take a nap???

J worked a lot in the nursery but everything has taken longer than we thought it would. Caulking, letting it dry, re-caulking because caulking shrinks??? (WHO KNEW?) Then filling the nail holes, adding the final corner-round trim in a few places. Repainting over the caulking and then, finally, painting the wainscoting. I dusted the dresser so it is ready to come in once the paint is dry. Then we'll start working on getting the crib set up and moved inside.

J and Twin went to the movies to see Drive while I stayed home and watched Jane Eyre with Ollie. The other two wanted nothing to do with it. Then J and I watched I love you, Phillip Morris last night. Am I the only one who was shocked to find out it wasn't about cigarettes and it WAS a true story? That dude was crazy!!

Oh, and Twin bought a new chair for the downstairs living area so we re-arranged that a bit with our semi-new couch. Our old one that O chewed as a puppy finally went to the dump. Pictures soon.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Breaking Dawn Pt 1

So, any Twilight fans out there? I heard of the books just as we moved to WI three years ago and I read them to take my mind off of my situation... jobless, friendless, etc. Bella, Edward and Jacob really helped me through the transition! :)

Anyway, I just saw the 2.5 minute trailer yesterday and I am so so so excited for the next movie. I think this will be my favorite movie by far as the first section of Breaking Dawn is by far my favorite.

J hates it when I make him go to the Friday evening show with a thousand other screaming teens so maybe we'll aim for the Sunday matinee. I try to be nice!

Watch it for yourself and let me know what you think!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

19 Weeks -- The Nursery Begins

My M&D are in town for a few days so my Dad has been helping J with the wainscoting in the nursery. They are going to finish up the trim tonight, then they leave tomorrow so J will be painting it all this weekend. It is pre-primed so we just need to add the white top coat. My job is to collect baby things from the entire house and move it into the nursery. I have stuff stashed everywhere... garage, basement, closets, etc! It will feel like hide and seek.


As for me and Baby...
How far along? 19 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: -5 lbs
(although I'm eating so much and constantly starving that that may be less now)
Maternity clothes? I wore a maternity dress to N&E's rehearsal dinner, but that's it!
Stretch marks? No
Sleep: Sleeping great still. I love sleeping!
Best moment this week: My mom trying to "hear" the baby move and finally just listening for the heartbeat. We found it and the monitor said it was a strong 145/minute. However baby kept moving so J and Dad couldn't hear it for very long.
Movement: Feeling it a little more each day, especially in the evening after dinner!
Food cravings: Cereal! This week it is fruit loops... weird!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Brushing my teeth and taking my prenatal.. still!
Have you started to show yet: J says yes, I say no. I guess the jury is still out.
Gender prediction: Boy
Labor Signs: No
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy!  Really happy and blessed this week!
Looking forward to: Seeing and hearing our baby and finding out what we're having in less than 2 weeks!!! 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mirror, Mirror

I found this lovely mirror for 90% off at Hobby Lobby... from $60 down to $6! It had a few scratches and knicks on the paint, but the mirror and structure of the frame were still in tact. Somehow I managed to talk J into buying it. He was super skeptical!

I knew that we needed a new mirror for the new guest room downstairs. Since they will share a bathroom with twin, I wanted them to at least have a large mirror in their room in case they wanted to apply their make-up or do their hair in the privacy of their own room. But the current frame wouldn't work for the new room... so we changed it.

J painted on three coats of primer over the color, followed by a coat of our bright white paint. Once it was dry, I went out to help J tape off some stripes. Then he painted the stripes the same color as the room.

Once we got the mirror back inside and changed the orientation of the hooks to horizontal, we hung it up in the room! I think it serves its purpose and looks fabulous. For $6 you can't beat it!

It was a quick, easy and cheap fix for a serious need in that room! I am so pleased. I am so glad I spotted it and talked J into it when I know he thought I was CRAZY!!! :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Everything Changes!

Everything changes... including the house! I figured it was time to start discussing some of the changes occurring in the house and what we hope to have done by the time Baby Brown this winter!

My workout room is now an additional spare bedroom...

My office is now a sitting area/library/workout room combo... don't mind the clutter, it's a work in progress!


The 2nd guest bedroom will become a nursery but it is an additional bedroom for now... even though the walls and wainscoting are there for Baby...

Before Baby Brown makes its appearance, we still hope to ...
1. Replace the downstairs sliding glass door.
2. Install the new backsplash in the kitchen.
3. Touch up the baseboard in the kitchen/dining room/living room.
4. Finalize the decor in our bedroom once the new bedding arrives.
5. Put up drywall/flooring in the downstairs unfinished hallway and make that my office/sewing area.
6. Put a ceiling in the downstairs sitting room and hallway.
7. Declutter and organize the garage.
8. Sell our old over-the-stove microwave.

Think we can get it done? I think so... especially if over labor day weekend alone we were able to transition the workout room to a bedroom, the office to a multi-purpose room and our guest room into the start of a nursery. J said all we did over Labor Day was wait for paint to dry which is fairly accurate!

I think we got this... just lots to still do!!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Time for Laundry!

I didn't take pictures of the steps of this project, but I think you'll be able to follow me!

This is a sign/subway art combo. It is for my MIL's laundry room. And here we go...

1. Paint the canvas the color of your choosing.
2. Apply letters of your choosing.
3. Mod Podge over the letters.
4. Let dry and enjoy!

Simple, inexpensive and easy. Now to hope that she likes it!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

A Special Gift!

Today, J and I get a great gift! A new sister. Today we welcome Elaine into our family (officially) and we couldn't be more excited.

Here's to you N+E! Enjoy each minute of today. Love you, both!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Home is Where the Heart Is!

I'd seen on pinterest where someone glued coins to a cardboard letter to get a really cool effect... 

I'll wait why you go check it out...

See? I told you so.

Anyway, I knew that would be great to do in our house, too, expect I realized that nickels and pennies wouldn't really work and dimes would add up and fast!

I even tried nickels again to see how they looked... just too big for my piece but the clear stones gave us the same sparkle and shine for a fraction of the price and they scaled more appropriately to the piece.

Once I decided on the marbles, I started gluing.

And I kept on gluing for two hours! (No joke!)

But I ended up with a really cute and inexpensive project, even if it did take quite a while. This is going to go in our new guest bedroom. The room is ready but nothing is on the wall yet. I'll show you the final project once it's up!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

18 Weeks

Here I am at 18 weeks trying on my maternity pants. I have quite a way to go before I fill them out. J and I had a good good laugh when I tried them on. We won't be laughing in 3 months when it is all I can fit into!!!

Less than 3 weeks until we know if our little one is a little guy or gal. J just can't wait to know. I am getting excited to know but I always envisioned waiting until the delivery to find out. I guess it is one more thing to celebrate along the way!

This week...
How far along? 18 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: -5 lbs still 

Maternity clothes? Bought a few things, but still not wearing any yet
Stretch marks? No
Sleep: Sleeping great still, except for my frequent trips to the bathroom (however they are down to 2 per night versus the 3-4 I was used to)
Best moment this week: I'm starting to feel the baby move more consistently, which is fabulous!!! I love it!
Movement: Feeling it a little more each day, especially in the evening when I'm laying down but not asleep yet!
Food cravings: Cereal and gatorade.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Brushing my teeth and taking my prenatal.. still!
Have you started to show yet: Not really, but things are much tighter!
Gender prediction: Boy
Labor Signs: No
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy! But stressed a littler this week!
Looking forward to: More consistent baby movements! And, N&E's wedding weekend!

Tutu Preview

What I wouldn't do for my Aubrey...or at least attempt! Heather sent me the link to the ballet bag below and asked for me to make a similar one for Aubs. I figured I'd give it a whirl!

This weekend, I went to Hobby Lobby and got the supplies. The colors appear to be a good match so far.

Here is how far I am now. I still need to add the tulle and sew on the ribbon. But, I'm getting there. I hope she loves it!

What do you think so far? I'm hoping to finish it soon.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

What is your happily ever after?

I saw this on etsy via pinterest and figured I could make my own (better) version for my bedroom.

For my version... You need:
Letters (Stencil/Vinyl Letters)

I chose stickable vinyl letters that I found on the cheap. You can use something like that, a stencil, your Cricket cutter, etc. Up to you. You take your letters and place them on your canvas.

Then you paint over the entire canvas, letters and all.

We gave ours two coats to make sure it was covered.

Peel the letters off carefully and viola! Instant, quick and inexpensive art. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Monogram Gift -- DIY

As promised, I wanted to show you how to make the monogram picture album. It is really easy peasy!

You need:
Cardboard Letter of your choosing
Mod Podge
Printed Photos

I had my husband paint a base coat on the B before I got started so that the sides and anything else that showed through between the pictures would be covered. I chose a paint color that I knew would go with my MIL's home's color palate.

Once it was all painted, I laid out all of the pictures and tried to figure out where they would all go. Please disregard my crazy unorganized kitchen table workspace.

Once all of the pictures were placed appropriately, I started trimming the photos down to size. This takes a while and it starts to feel a bit like Tetris to get everything to fit how you want it to.

Once I was happy with the locations, I started mod podging everything on. I did the backs and edges first.

Once everything was glued down, I went over all of it with the mod podge to guarantee the photos would stay in place as I desired.

Once it all dries, you have an inexpensive and meaningful gift to present to someone special. This once went to my MIL and FIL for their anniversary this year.