Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!

I think it was too cold last night for trick or treaters. We didn't have as many kids stop by as we usually do. I hope everyone had a nice night.

Here's another Fall/Halloween craft idea. I saw a pumpkin like this on the cover of a Pottery Barn Kids catalog last year and decided to make my own.

I bought a Funkin (fake pumpkin/craft pumpkin) from Michael's, cut out the bottom of it, drilled holes all over it, then put a strand of Christmas lights inside. I pushed a bulb from the Christmas lights through each hole (the lightbulbs fit snugly into the holes so I had to push and ended up with a blistered thumb. Make sure your holes are big but not too big for the lightbulbs). An easy and inexpensive decoration!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Baby bedding reveal!

My FINAL decision :)

The bumper, sheet, and skirt:

The bumper and crib skirt. I might change it up and add a plain blue crib sheet. I figure we'll need the extra sheets.

I like the soft blue trim at the bottom of the crib skirt. I'm hoping to find coordinating drapes.

The set I bought came with a changing pad cover, extra polka dot crib sheet, faux fur blanket (SO soft), a little lovey blanket, and a round basket. The 3 piece set (skirt, sheet, and bumper) comes with the rectangle basket. We'll need the baskets for the changing table so it all worked out.

I'm happy that the argyle pattern will still be in the room for the time when we don't use the bumper.

Thanks for your help girls!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Crafty bloggers

I can't quite recall how I found these 2 blogs but I read them regularly. They are sisters and share some GREAT ideas through their blogs. I find them entertaining and inspiring. Find Darby's here and Erika's here.

In the Spring I was inspired by their Peep wreath. I think Erika posted the idea and Darby created one.

I loved the idea so much that I created one/copied it:

I might use a thicker wreath form next year but I used what I had at home.

Well, this fall, Darby posted a Halloween wreath idea. Another great project so I had to create one too!

My friend had a pink feather wreath hanging at her baby shower in 2006 (pictured below). After the shower she hung it in the baby's room and probably put it on her front door as an announcement that her little girl had arrived. I know she spent about $50 on it. I'm hoping to make a blue one for much less! I'll hang it on our front door when our little guy arrives. I can't seem to find baby blue boas though. Most that I've come across are more of a teal color. Maybe I'll have to make a blue bow wreath like Darby's AU creation instead.

What is this plant called?

(Please ignore my sad impatients in the background. I didn't take very good care of them this summer).

While we were doing our planting this past spring I threw down some seeds in the corner. I honestly didn't think anything would grow so I didn't bother to remember what seeds they were. Well, much to my surprise, something TOOK OFF! It grew more than a foot taller than me but I have no idea what it was. Here are some pics. Maybe someone can help me identify it.

Here is the thick stem...

The top

Some buds

Unfortunately, most of the buds never bloomed because the frost killed it. Since it's dead now, do I just cut it down or pull it out? Can you tell I'm a novice? Hope someone can help.

Fortunately, the coral bells are still doing well as Dawn said they would. Thanks Dawn!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Love the Towncriers!

Another post in honor of NIAW.

Please check out these videos by thetowncriers on youtube. I could listen to them over and over again. Her voice and messages are profound but conveyed in such a wonderfully simple way. I wish I could figure out how to get them on my ipod. Any ideas???

She also has a blog here. Lots of great info!

I was surprised at comments that I received about my infertility even after becoming pregnant. I guess people don't know what to say or what they are trying to say comes out the wrong way. I'm certain that we've all been guilty of both of these. I take that into consideration when responding to comments. One comment that I have tried to let go of was "Oh, you must have just been more relaxed the month you conceived". It was difficult not to say "Yes, that was it. It had nothing to do with injecting a follicle stimuating hormone into myself everyday, monitoring the growth of our perfect little follicle through internal ultra sounds up to 4 times a week, monitoring hormone levels through blood work up to 4 times a week, or timing when I have sex with my husband!". I have no doubt that the mind is very powerful and plays a role but by saying relaxing was what worked not only discounts what we did to try to conceive, but it also places blame. If only I had relaxed for the year and a half prior, then would all of our issues resolved? NO. I'd love to know the amount of relaxation needed for the cysts on my ovaries to clear and for my hormones to balance out. I NEEDED help. Just like 10% of the population. It's not all in our heads.

Just one reason why infertility awareness should be spread.
Thanks for reading!

Adventures in pregnancy pt 2

Oct 4th, the 2nd annual trip to NYC with Jen & Charlene!! Such a fun day!

My view down at 24 weeks pregnant and baby's first ferry ride :)

We decided not to see a show this year so that we could get some more exploring/touring in. We went to Washington Square Park, which was unfortunately closed.

We did, however get to Sullivan Street! Thanks for the surprise, girls! They know how much Matt and I love that song by Counting Crows.

Our lunchtime entertainment after exploring the area and a farmer's market:

Central Park!

Grand Central Station. I think I saved this pic too small.

Dinner at Basilica. We really loved this place last year so we came back again. It did not disappoint. Penne a la Vodka was AMAZING!

We saved room for dessert a few doors down. I wish I knew the name of that little bakery. It was cute & as you can see ... yummy.

A stop in Times Square

Then back to the ferry and home.

What a great day! I'm already looking forward to next year. We've talked about going for a day of shopping or perhaps going on a weekday and trying to get tickets to see Martha!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

National Infertility Awareness Week

I've been thinking a lot about the ladies I know who have suffered loss and those who are struggling to conceive. I don't think I will ever forget that pain, the empty feeling I had, or that deep longing. I send my thoughts, prayers, and support to those who are going through that turmoil.

In honor of you and this week... National Infertility Awareness Week, October 19-25 ... I ask that anyone reading this please visit the RESOLVE website. Please, become more aware, spread the awareness, and show your support.

If you have another free moment I encourage you to watch this video on youtube.

This first one makes me cry every time I watch it.

I am thankful to the creator because it reminds me of our journey to grow our family. All of it ... the tests, blood work, sitting around in waiting rooms, injections, ultra sounds, feeling like my body was a science experiment, feeling like my body had failed me, and times that I felt like I had failed as a woman... ALL of it was difficult and still makes me cry, but now it feels WORTH IT already. I don't think Matt or I would be as strong, happy, or as appreciative for our blessing as we are today had we not endured that TOGETHER. I think it gave us another area of appreciation for each other. Because, if you've been through that, then you know that your partner is the only one besides yourself who truly understands what it was like. We understand what it was like to sit beside each other through it. He held my hand through the pain of the HSG, the injections, the blood work and uncomfortable ultra sounds. We watched those follicles, that would never be babies, grow and then disappear together. We hugged each other through the repeated negative pregnancy tests. It helped create a stronger us. Still, there are days when I wish it had been easier, because even though I see the benefits and even though we are past the struggle to try to conceive our first child, it is still painful to think about. I think about others who have gone through SO much more. My heart aches for them and I pray for them.

I can't forget to mention friends too. Above I said that your partner is the only one who truly understands what it's like but to be honest, those friends play an amazing role too. They were there to listen, offer support, and distraction. Friends helped me more than I can even describe. I think it's all too easy to become completley consumed with TTC. They helped me through it and helped me keep a balance. It's amazing to have someone there for you but also to be there for ... to listen to them, to ask how their day was, to be there for their ups and downs too. I don't know where I'd be without my friends. Thanks girls!

I'm thinking about my friends... especially those dealing with trouble TTC/infertility. You're never far from my thoughts.

DOUBLE digits!!

Thanks to Angela for alerting me to this tonight... according to my ticker there are 99 days to go until my due date!!! I absolutely cannot believe it. It seems like time crawls so slowly when trying to conceive, starting a new cycle, going through treatment etc. Now time is flying by and I just want to take it all in. Each day I evaluate my belly and am thankful. I feel the baby move and feel so full of love.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

23 weeks

My belly is growing :)

We took a trip to MD that week to visit my family. We saw fields of sunflowers on the way there. These were the best shots I could get from a moving car but thought they were worth posting:

I was still torturing myself with nursery options when I took these pics. Although they're very nice, I decided to go a different direction. Stay tuned b/c I think I have made my FINAL choice.

Adventures in pregnancy pt 1

I've had a few adventures over the past month that I'd like to document. FUN times!

First, we took a trip to PSU on 9/20 (22 weeks pregnant). Back to the place where we met, fell in love, returned to marry, and love to visit. We talk about retiring in State College someday.

Our trip back to Happy Valley didn't disappoint. Getting there was interesting ... traffic like I've never seen in that area & an incident with some 'helpful' parking attendants started off our day on a not so pleasant tone but the day only got better. We had GORGEOUS weather, a great tailgating atmosphere, wonderful friends to hang out with, and another WIN for PSU!!


Baby's 1st PSU game!

We loved our seats. They were HIGH up but plenty of room for more friends to join us! Jen's first PSU game too :)

Back to the tailgate. Our friends have a nice set up and we're thankful to be invited to join them. PSU decked out RV (very warm for colder tailgates), it is nice not to have to use the port-a-potty's, TV's inside and out (so you don't miss a moment of College Game Day or the games), yummy food, and of course beverages & beer pong. I was impressed with their new table... the cups sit inside little holes so they don't fall over -- so clever! Tailgating isn't quite the same while pregnant but still a good time!

After the game we visited the Nittany Lion statue, shopped downtown (picked up some PSU gear for the baby & ourselves plus the necessary stickies from the Diner), and stopped for dinner before heading home. It was a long day. I was surprised at how much this day trip took out of me. I was in pain and exhausted by the end of the day but it was well worth it!

And just because I'm feeling nostalgic ... some pics from our college days of tailgating:

Nov 17, 2001. Aww, the day we started dating.

A very fun Blue White game tailgate. It was obviously a rainy day. We didn't prepare with tents so we made one out of plastic, chairs and an umbrella duct taped together. We also made a pole out of beer cans & duct tape to help hold our tent up in the middle... classic college days :)

During our last year in State College. We lived in a tiny one bedroom apartment and still talk about how happy we were there.

Our first trip back to PSU after moving away. Another rainy but fun day in Happy Valley!

Looking back on these pics makes me smile. We've had so many great times in State College. We look forward to future trips back there as a family of 3! Our little guy is kicking away as I finish this ...