Friday, January 30, 2009

Baby is here!

CKB and I are so thankful to announce the arrival of our newest blessing - little Miss Baby arrived at 11:54 a.m. on January 27 after a short labor. She weighed 7 lb. 2 oz. and measured 20 inches long. She is doing great and is absolutely beautiful. At present, she has medium/dark brown hair.

All of her siblings are thrilled to finally see their baby sister and can't stop talking about her, oohing and aahing over her and touting her adorableness and cuteness every time they lay eyes on her. :)

We are so very thankful to God for a safe delivery for Miss Baby and myself. We came home from the hospital the following day and have been resting since then. My parents are in town helping w/the children and the household things that never cease, even in the wake of such a wonderful miracle as the birth of a new baby. We're very thankful for all they have done and continue to do in order that CKB and I can rest and focus on Miss Baby right now.

Here are some pictures of our sweet baby girl. Thank you all for your prayers for us during my pregnancy - they mean so much to us.

1 day old and wide awake!

TINY fingers!

The ride home....

Snug in bed at home with my quilt...

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Fancy Baby Burp Cloths, Cloth Diapers

I found another cute baby idea awhile back and found time to try it out recently.

You may remember I had purchased some supplies - well, here's what I've been up to.

Over at Make and Takes, I found these embellished burp cloths (cloth diapers) and decided Miss Baby needed a few for special outings (around the house the plain ones will work just fine, thank you very much). This was such a quick and easy project and I'm happy with the outcome.

While I was working on these, Mr. A came along to see what I was up to and requested I embellish one of his (in our house, I pretty much live w/a cloth diaper on my shoulder for the first few months of each child's life, at least, and they become a security blanket of sorts - it has been this way with all 4 of the children - Mr. A still likes to have a "dah" around at night or if he's tired and wanted me to put green trim on the ends of his - no frilly rick rack down the length, mind you, just dark green on each end - why not, I said, and in no time while he sat and WAITED (and this is an amazing feat since most 2 year olds do not sit and wait for much of anything!) , I quickly added the green binding to each end of one of his "dahs" and he is a happy little man)).

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Baby Quilt (my FIRST quilt) is COMPLETE!

I am so excited to share my first quilt w/y'all! My good friend (who owns Lone Star House of Quilts) quilted it for me and I just received it back a few days ago. I can hardly believe I actually pieced the quilt and it is done now - just waiting for Little Miss to arrive.

The quilting looks wonderful and I'm thrilled with my first ever totally completed quilt, can you tell? Maybe, just maybe, I'll try my hand at actually doing the quilting on a future quilt, but I didn't want to risk making a huge mess out of the quilt top after all the time I put into it. I'm glad I trusted it to a dear friend who knew what she was doing!

So, without further adieu, here 'tis! (you can click on the pictures to see them larger and actually see the quilting)

here's a closeup of some of the quilting - I asked for hearts :)

All set for Miss Baby!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Back to the drawing board - darker greens for Mr. A's quilt

Well, I am just not feeling it w/those green fat quarters I picked up last week. I keep envisioning them with pinks and that certainly won't work for MISTER A, now will it? I think I need darker greens for him and am considering giving this group of darker greens I found online a try -

Maybe I'll be "happy" with this assortment :) and it'll save me a little time in going to my local quilt shop and picking out a variety on my own.

Also, I'm thinking about a stacked coin this or maybe a rail fence or some variation thereof....we'll see.

.still thinking.....

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Hexagon Quilt, one-patch, charm, all or not

I have recently become quite intrigued with the prospect of attempting to make my own hexagon quilt. This would be a hand sewing project and could be taken along on trips, outings, etc. and worked on little by little when I had a few mn.

I first became aware of this type of quilt at my parents' house when I saw one that was made by my grandmother and her mother, I believe. It is a hodge podge of different fabrics and I just really like it. I haven't inspected it closely to see if there are any repeating fabrics. Because the entire quilt is made of hexagons, it is a "one patch" - IF there are no duplicates in the fabrics, it would also be called a "charm quilt" - and it is a hexagon quilt. There are a few other names I ran across also, such as Honeycomb and Six-sided patchwork. Can you tell I've been doing some research?

I know, when will I ever have the time to do such a project, right? I don't know, but I really would like to give it a try. It will no doubt be a long term project, I'm a realist, but it's something I'd like to start in the near future (this year) and then just see how it goes. I believe I would go about it via the English Paper Piecing method and the local quilt shop has 2 ladies currently working on this type of quilt, so I could ask for help, if needed. They are both working on 'Grandmother's Flower Garden' hexagon quilts - while those are ok, I prefer the one patch with all different fabrics - not sure if I'll worry about having any repeats or not, I haven't found a source yet to see how many different fabrics I'd need for a certain size hexagon to make a certain size quilt - if anyone knows where I can find that info., I'd be most appreciative as it would help me figure out some things to get started. I picked up a charm pack of Feedsack V fabrics recently that has 50 fabrics in it - a good start, but I don't think it'd be enough if I was worrying about duplicates. Like I said though, I don't know that I care so much if it's a "charm" quilt or not, it's the hexagon shape that appeals to me for some reason.

Here are a few links that show Hexagon quilts, charm quilts, Grandmother's Garden examples and more if you care to take a look. I hope to have a picture of the one my grandmother worked on soon and will upload it when I do - I meant to take a picture of it myself when I was at my parents' house at Thanksgiving, but it slipped my mind - must've been that stomach bug that attacked us that impaired my thinking :)

Example of Grandmother's Flower Garden:

Example of charm/hexagon:

Anyway, anyone else who is working on one of these type of quilts, HAS worked on one, knows where I can get more info. on planning it all out (size and such), I'd be thrilled to hear from you - or if you just want to tell me how crazy you think I am, well, I guess you're welcome to say hi too :) I'll update as I make progress along the way - again, I know this'll be a longer term project, but I am looking forward to it!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Baby day cometh...and my first GIVEAWAY!

We're officially 38 weeks along. I had a dr. appt. yesterday to check on baby again and all is well - no spikes in blood pressure or anything out of the ordinary. Last week's sono estimated she's 6 lbs. and 8 oz. - of course the sono we had late in the game for Miss E said she was over 8 lbs. and when she was born, she only weighed in at 6 lb. and 14 oz. so what do they know, right?

Just for fun, it's time for you to get involved. I'm hosting my first giveaway, so bear with me! The giveaway is for a handmade "easy peasy swaddle sheet" - to enter, you must leave a comment (gasp) and tell me what date you think baby girl will be born as well as if you'd want your blanket to be for a girl or a boy. It's that simple! (for an extra entry, blog about my giveaway and link to this post! Be sure to let me know you did in your comment so I can go and check out your blog post and give you your extra entry!).

From the entries that choose the right date, one winner will be randomly selected and sometime in the foreseeable future, I'll find my way to the post office (or a wonderful family member who will be staying with me to help out after baby is born, will drop it off for me - that's you, Mom :) or Dad :) ) and it'll be on its way hopefully within a month of baby's delivery. I already have one extra ready for a girl and will be working on a boy one today - so the delivery time shouldn't be too long after baby is born!

So...think about it, post your comment and we'll see who guesses correctly!

Today is the 15th of January. Baby's due date is January 27, 2009. Happy guessing!!!

Oh yes, if noone actually guesses the day correctly, I'll randomly choose a winner from all who participated. Forgot that part!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Swaddling the wee one, a swaddle sheet!

Just a note - this post was written back in 2009 and seems to be one of the most popular/visited posts on the blog, yet there are zero comments on it - just found that interesting! If you're stopping by, say hello and let us know where you're coming from! Thanks for visiting! Now, back to the original post!

Swaddling - you know what that is, right? Well, if you've ever had a baby, you probably do.

It's one of those things that you get the hang of just about the time baby is too big for those tiny receiving blankets. Or, if you're like me and have LONG babies, those receiving blankets are pretty much too small to use for swaddling from the get-go! (1 of the children was 20.5", 2 were 21" and 1 was 22" long!).

So, I was interested in trying out a project for an "easy peasy swaddle sheet" when I ran across it on another blog recently - I found the instructions here and gave it a whirl. I'm happy w/the outcome and can DEFINITELY see this being a great sheet/blanket to have on hand all the time for covering up nursing, covering up the carseat to keep the sun out of baby's eyes and unwanted hands off baby at the store (you know what I'm talking about - all those folks who can't stand it if they don't touch the baby - ack!).

So, give it a try if you're expecting a little one - it's a quick and easy project!

(Oh yes, and if you are ironing and decide to use the steam function (when it's been EONS since you've used it - and yes, I put in fresh water) and get a few rust spots - don't scream, try lemon juice on the spots and wash in hot water right away - I could hardly believe it, but the spots came out and my blanket wasn't ruined! From now on, I'm going to do what my mom always did and just keep a spray bottle of water nearby when ironing - no worries about rust spots from a plastic spray bottle, right? Sigh - the joys of ironing!)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Feeling Green

Now that baby girl's quilt is in a semi-finished state, ie, off to be quilted, I decided it was time to at least start thinking about the next one in line - Mr. A's. Yes, I am going from youngest to oldest...Miss E might get hers done by the time she leaves for college, but I sincerely hope it's long before that.

Back to Mr. A - he has expressed over and over his preference for the color green for quite some time now, so green it is. I picked up a few things and am waiting for inspiration to hit me - not literally, I hope, but I do have an idea or two bouncing around. Miss E suggested I make the same design as how I'd made the baby's quilt, but I want them to all be different, so I nixed that idea. I guess you'll just have to stay tuned to see what I come up with...and when!

Until then, are you feeling green? :)

It was NOT easy to stay away from florals, but since this is for
MR. A, I thought it best. These are a few I found that just might work.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Crazy Blood Sugar Day

A week ago, the dr. "released" me from one of my blood sugar readings each day since I've been controlling things well with diet. Yay, my fingertips thanked her. Now, I only have a fasting reading first thing in the morning, 2 hrs. after breakfast and then either 2 hrs. after lunch or dinner - I alternate it each day.

Yesterday was a strange day.

Fasting - 83
2 hrs. after breakfast - 83
2 hrs. after lunch - 83

I kid you not. I started thinking maybe the monitor was broken.
CKB came home and when I told him about it, he offered to check his blood sugar and see if he got 83 also :) Gotta love a man who'll stab his finger for your sanity!

Anyway, he did NOT get 83 - more like 73 or something.

I planned to check it 2 hrs. after dinner also just to see if I got 83 again, but got busy w/putting the children to bed and hadn't set the timer like I usually do to notify me it was time to check and missed the time by about 45 mn. so I let it go.

This morning - 86 - I guess the monitor isn't broken, I just had a strange day of keeping things very level yesterday...not a bad thing, just strange....anyone else hear the Twilight Zone theme song.....?

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Not much going on...

Well, the other day I mentioned how tired I was and that I might blog about it - anyone actually curious?

No, it's not because I'm 37 weeks and 2 days pregnant. That, in and of itself, would be enough to cause a certain degree of fatigue, but that's not it.

On Monday, around noon, an email came in from the rental property manager's office saying that the landlord had requested a "property condition report" and that the prop. mgr. rep. would be out sometime between Tuesday 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. and the following Monday (the 12th!) 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. They could not give an exact day or time because of the number of these reports they would be doing.


The house has become more cluttered than usual lately what w/Christmas, a lot of travel, me being tired because I'm pregnant, baby shower stuff I haven't quite figured out where to put and me not enforcing as much "cleanup time" with the children...did I mention piles of laundry?

Anyway, I confess to having a slight breakdown when telling CKB about this fun new turn of events. He called back a little while later to check on me and to tell me he had a plan for when he got home and that he thought we could get things tidied up enough that evening. Whew.

Other matters:

Mind you, the A/C STILL isn't fixed. I reported it on 10/30 and it STILL isn't fixed.

According to the websites I've read on renter's rights, we basically don't have any when it all boils down to it. If we threaten to withhold rent, they'd probably evict us. If we have it fixed ourselves, they probably wouldn't reimburse us. Etc. Etc. Etc.

But, they want to come out and do a property condition checkup to see if we've trashed the place basically. Well, how nice for them. We pay our rent on time and have for the past year and a half, but they can't do one little thing like getting the a/c fixed for us? I guess they're too comfy cozy up there in their office WITH a/c to be concerned about a pregnant woman with small children sweltering on the oddball high temp days we still have even in Nov/Dec/ and now January...and I'm sure they're not losing any sleep over it (like we have when we've put the children to bed in their skimpiest clothes we could find, ie, shorts and short sleeve t-shirts and sweat on their brows) on the nights when the house has been over 85 at bedtime. Oh no. But, hear ye, hear ye, we'll be showing up to inspect the house SOMEtime between Tuesday and the next Monday and we just have to accept that. Makes me want to make the house about 100 degrees on the day they come out - but then, who knows when that's going to be...they haven't made it out here yet....tick tock, it'll be Monday soon and amazingly they don't do these inspections on Sundays so we won't have to worry about it for that one day at least.

So....the reason I was so exhausted was because I cleaned house all day and into the night after CKB got here (he was exhausted as well and did a lot more in the few hours after he got home than I'd managed to during the day) and could hardly get up and down off the floor by the time I crawled into bed that night. I thank God that I was able to get OUT of bed the next morning (when I got up in the night, I could barely walk) and that was w/o taking any pain meds (I avoid them at all costs if I can when I'm pregnant, even Tylenol).

So, if anyone's still reading, that's why I was SOOO tired the other night.

Believe it or not, I didn't end up in labor after all of that - it's a wonder.

Have I mentioned lately how much I detest renting? and how much I look forward to resuming our house search when baby girl arrives? and how I'd never rent from this particular company again unless it was the last choice I had? and....well, I think you get the picture :) Our lease is up in May....pray for us to find other accomodations quickly after little miss arrives.

The last few days I've been like a drill sergeant with the children and keeping stuff picked up - it's driving me crazy, but I do kind of like seeing the floor DURING the day for a change. Maybe some good has come from this ridiculous inspection thing? gasp....did I say that?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Overheard this morning

The children are playing in the den....

Mr. E - "Don't tell us what to do, Miss E! Mama tells us what to do!"


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Feeling crafty...and acting on it!

Lately I've run across some fun crafty blogs with really cute ideas for baby things and naturally these were of interest to me at this particular point in time. :)

I have picked up a few supplies and hope to finish a few projects before Miss Baby arrives, but if I don't, there'll always be someone having a baby somewhere that I can gift a few things to down the road.

Some of the supplies.....

Hmmm.....wondering what these are for?

...and some fat quarters I found at Hobby Lobby recently - I was visiting a different store and it was the first time I'd seen fat quarters at a Hobby Lobby - I think my favorite is the dark magenta/green tulip print on the right.

One finished project - we received some really cute outfits for Miss Baby at the baby shower one of the churches threw for us a few weekends ago. I ran across this cute idea for organizing baby's closet and thought it was worth a try - yes, I got a little carried away (2 years out!), but then sometimes you find a good deal on something that's too big and purchase it early, so now it'll have a place to go :)

I found the idea here:

This "project" was quick and easy - all you need is a set of foam door hangers, number stickers and scissors to cut a slit in the side of the hanger area. Voila! I was able to do this in just a few moments even with all my little helpers gathering around to see what *I* was doing with stickers! ;)

I also made one with each of the girls' names on it to use in their closet to divide their "sides" of the closet up better and keep their dresses better separated. (Mr. E said he needed a blue one w/his name on it....) I still need to cut a slit in the side of the doorknob area so they can be put onto the clothes rod in the closet, but I'll do that soon and then get organized. Granted, a LOT of baby clothes get folded and put into a dresser, but this'll be great for dresses and things bought ahead of time that are still on a hanger.

The dress...

Well, I said I would, so I did, and in record time around here...

Here's the sweet little dress I found at Kohl's over the weekend.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

1st weekend without Wal-mart - Success!

Well, this is our first weekend without Wal-mart and we got along swimmingly so far. CKB didn't get a chance to go look for that shirt replacement at Wal-mart last week (we did return the one that was the wrong size, but were at a different one than the one we originally bought it at and they didn't have the same color), so we went to Kohl's this afternoon and are very glad we did. The selection of dress shirts was phenomenally better and lots of things were on sale so we easily found just what we needed there. While he looked for a shirt, I took a look at baby clothes and found an extremely sweet little dress for Miss Baby and it was on clearance - come to think of it TONS of clothes were on clearance - I might've looked longer, but I need to really assess what we have that will work for this little one before purchasing anything else. When you see the dress you'll see why I couldn't resist it (I'll try to take a picture of it tomorrow or sometime soon!) :) It's hard to find "sweet" dresses for little girls and this one is just adorable.

We also visited Target for a new baby carseat for little miss and found a great deal on clearance - whoo hoo - all in all a great weekend!

Slowly, but surely, things are getting marked off my "to do before baby is born" list. I also picked up a set of 8 new bibs at Kohl's on clearance that will be great for wearing on the way to church services, etc. to keep those adorable little outfits clean from drool and spitup.

As for groceries - didn't need to get anything this weekend, but did stop at Brookshire's yesterday for some Dr. Smith's diaper rash ointment which has been recommended to me by 2 friends now and I figured it was worth a try. It's especially supposed to be good for sensitive skin and baby will definitely have that!

Well, that's about it for now. I didn't miss Wal-mart at all, nary a bit!

I hope y'all have a blessed Sunday in the Lord!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

A Year Without Wal-mart - 2009

We're not ones to make "New Year's Resolutions" or anything around here, but the other day CKB said he had an interesting idea that he'd tell me about when he got home from work. I was intrigued, naturally.

At dinner that night, I remembered his phone call and asked what the idea was. He said, "A Year Without Wal-mart." I let that sink in for a moment or two and thought, why not, there are MANY reasons this would be a good idea.

A few:

Every time I go in Wal-mart, I feel like I need to walk through a decontamination booth on my way out - you know what I mean, just touching one of the carts is all it takes - placing a child (or two) in the cart...well, you might as well buy some cough medicine, decongestant and antihistamine before you leave because you'll no doubt need it within a few days.

Rude people. 'Nuff said. (I will say it was especially bad around Christmas - pushing, shoving, etc. and that was still a few weeks ahead of time - ugh!).

So much stuff. Every time I go in there for a few things, I come out with a cartful it seems. It's just a tad too easy to get "one more thing" - hopefully this will help us in thinking ahead more on purchases and hey, maybe we'll just save some money by staying out of there!

In the days following this decision, my mind now and then would start thinking about the different things I have bought at Wal-mart...groceries, shoes, clothes, electronics, craft stuff, fabric, towels, Mr. E's big boy bed, etc. etc. etc. and how would I manage without my "one stop shop" for a year?

I can get all of those things at other places, it will just require more thought out trips and no unnecessary trips since the children are with me all the time. I will probably visit actual grocery stores more often, actual craft stores (Michael's, Hobby Lobby), fabric stores (Jo-Ann, Hancock, little quilt shops, etc.), shoe stores (Payless, department stores), actual clothing stores (Kohl's, Bealls, etc.) and well, there's still Target (I'd stopped buying the girls' jeans at Wal-mart a year or two ago anyway because all I could find was low rise/waist versions and the ones at Target were still decent and just the basic style, so no big deal here).

So, we're off on a new adventure. CKB has just a few more days to swap out a shirt Miss A got for him for Christmas that wasn't the right Wal-mart...and then the experiment begins, Jan. 1, 2009. It'll be a challenge in some respects - I'd planned to get Mr. A's big boy bed there to match Mr. E's in a few months when we have to boot him out of the crib for Miss Baby - other than that I can't think of anything that's going to be a big deal, just a little bit less of a convenience maybe. We'll see..... And, for what it's worth, this is not any kind of boycott, just a family experiment.

Anyone else care to join us? ;)