Saturday, July 31, 2010

Building a Baby Cradle (Days 7-8)

Due to a problem with the belt on the band saw, we had to switch gears and do some work on the drill press.

cradle day 7-8

Both sides have their holes drilled and are waiting for the spindles to be glued into place. I am so excited to see the progress made each day.

I really don't have much else to report, my feet and ankles are beginning to swell so I am trying to relax with my feet up while I can.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Building a Baby Cradle (Days 4-6)

Not really sure what days we have been working but it is pretty much a few hours each day. Today was "Day 6". Days 4-6 have been spent doing the rough cuts of all the pieces. Things are beginning to take shape!

The leg posts were already finished but one out of four of the feet and supports got finished today. I can't believe how much time it takes to do things the right way. We spend at least half of our time planning and practicing and my father in law spends the other half of the time actually cutting. For the foot and support piece, he used so many different tools and machines (table saw, ban saw, router, chisel, etc).

cradle day 4-6

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wordless Wednesday {36 weeks pregnant}

When you are too pregnant and exhausted to climb upstairs for a photo in a proper mirror.

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Words to be added later, after a trip to the CF clinic.

Wordy Update: I can't believe in approximately 4 weeks, I will be a mother of two children, Nathan will have a little sister, and we will be a family of 4. I am beginning to feel like August is going to be an extremely rough month. I don't recall it being this difficult when I was pregnant with Nathan. I am now taking the liquid iron supplement with prune juice, it helps the tiniest bit.

Click here to see more baby belly photos.

Being 36 weeks pregnant can be difficult at times, to learn more about it, please visit PregnancyCorner.com.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Building a Baby Cradle (Days 2-3)

We didn't do any work on the cradle yesterday for several reasons:

1. It was my birthday
2. It was unbearably hot
3. Nathan was and still is sick

He dozed off on the arm of our sofa yesterday afternoon which is extremely rare. He was only asleep for twenty minutes at the most because he woke up coughing and gagging on mucous.

Nathan sick on my bday

Now back to "Building a Baby Cradle". Thursday and Friday my father in law and I worked on the legs to the cradle. We started off with newel posts (the post at the top or bottom of a flight of stairs) because they are already turned on a lathe which we don't have (for the decorative curves).

He used a drill press to make the holes and then a router to hollow out the grooves. Here he is using a chisel to square of the grooves created by the router.

cradle day 2-3

What did I do? I held wood, fetched tools, flipped switches, blew dust, offered suggestions and double checked all measurements. I think that is enough considering the safety of Baby Girl.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

27 and 35 ½

Today I will be celebrating my 27th birthday while 35 ½ weeks pregnant.

Nathan is not feeling well. Two days ago we started noticing more congestion and coughing. Yesterday he developed a slight temperature, glassy eyes and began wheezing. Today he is just pretty miserable. We have an routine appointment at his CF clinic on Wednesday but if he gets worse I may reschedule the appointment for earlier in the week.

I had planned on taking Nathan to see hot air balloons for my birthday but may try tomorrow instead if he is feeling better. I don't think he would be up to doing too much of anything today.

I did not have a chance to get a 35 week belly photo this week but here is a photo from when I was 35 weeks pregnant with Nathan. The photo was taken the day before my 25th birthday, 2 years ago. I barely look pregnant with Nathan, what do you think?

35 weeks pg with Nathan

Click here to see more baby belly photos.

Being 35 weeks pregnant can be difficult at times, to learn more about it, please visit PregnancyCorner.com.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Cradle Bumper: Project Complete!

I am completely shocked that I was able to complete the cradle bumper yesterday especially since I got a rough start to my day.

cradlebumper-1

First I couldn't find the foot or power cord to my sewing machine (this happens way too often).

Then I couldn't find the piece of paper where I did all my brainstorming and planning (since I very rarely use a pattern I usually have to create my own). This piece of scrap paper had all the interior dimensions of the cradle and the dimensions for the cuts of fabric. Poof! the day I need this paper it disappears into thin air.

And the icing on the cake, I ordered the batting over a week ago online. FedEx was supposed to deliver the package on Monday, then the delivery was rescheduled for Tuesday, and finally they transferred the package to USPS and it was delivered on Wednesday (yesterday). Of course our mail doesn't arrive until the afternoon, much too late.

But, determined to socialize with my girlfriends, I still packed the car with what I did have, sewing machine and fabric, and left for a day of sewing or not sewing. I picked up a fruit salad on the way and arrived only a half hour late. I was very relieved not to be the last one to show.

After sitting around for about a half hour trying not to blow a gasket, I hopped on my friend Kelly's computer and began to research the measurements, again. I think Kelly realized how flustered I was and helped me with the brainstorming. Sometimes you just need an extra brain in the room and if it weren't for her I probably would have sat around all day doing nothing and throwing a pity party for myself. Thanks Kelly!

I was also determined to make the most of this sewing day. It is not often when you have a roomful of women with different experiences and suggestions to ask advice. Because of this I was able to sew the perfect ruffle for Baby Girl's bumper.



All in all the day, which didn't begin so smoothly, ended with a completed project. My husband even hand delivered the batting after the postman delivered it to our house.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sewing Day

Heading out for a day of sewing and socializing (and eating) with my awesome girl friends. I will be working on Baby Girl's* cradle bumper. I didn't receive the padding on Monday like I was supposed to and still haven't today. Grrr, Joann Fabric and FedEx!

If the padding arrives today, I can finish the bumper and share some photos later.

*I was so set on revealing Baby Girl's name yesterday but received mixed feedback from friends on facebook. Not that I think anyone would snatch our name, but I don't want to take any chances. Let me just say, don't be asking Nathan what her name is because he just may tell you.

Monday, July 19, 2010

little fishy

I am so happy that Nathan is a little fishy. I was a little worried in the beginning of the summer because he threw a fit when I put a life preserver on him and put him in the water. It took him a few weeks to get over the "life preserver incident".

I noticed that he absolutely loved the pond near a local park but when it came to pools he apparently couldn't forget about the life preserver. But luckily he overcame it all when he saw our toddler community pool.

As a child, I lived in the pool from Memorial Day to Labor Day. I was the first one in and the last one out and being a natural childhood blonde I also had the greenest hair around. Lakes, on the other hand, I could live without. I live in a county where only one town's swim team practiced and had meets in a pool. I would never have considered joining the swim team if I had to swim in a lake. I was a terrific swimmer during our home meets but almost drowned myself when we had an away meet at a lake.

Perhaps Nathan didn't inherit my fear of lakes and ponds but he sure did inherit my love of pools and swimming. Our community's toddler pool is perfect for him. It ranges from 1 foot to a foot and a half in depth. He can safely swim (walk/hop/splash) from one side to the other and experiments by dunking his head under the water. He does occasionally get so excited that he loses his balance and falls under the water but I rescue him immediately. We need to practice not swallowing the pool water.

pool-1-4

Sometimes he prefers the big pool with mommy or daddy but that can wait for another post.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Building a Baby Cradle (Day 1)

I am going to officially consider yesterday Day 1 of the baby cradle building project my father in law and I have undertaken. Although I doubt I will be cleared to use any power tools for this project, I will be there every step of the way for assistance, moral support and second opinions.

We (my father in law and I) have spent several days over the past couple of months studying the plans to see what tools and materials we would need for the project and to get a general idea of what lay ahead.

Yesterday, Day 1, I went to the hardware store with Jay's parents and picked up to remainder of the wood and tools we would need. We still need to get the hardware but we all felt that we had spent enough time shopping in the heat for the day.

Building a Baby Cradle Day 1 Photo

Cradle Day 1 Materials

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The time of our lives

Nathan had the time of his life at our community pool today. We were both splashing in the water and he was laughing hysterically with his mouth as wide as it could get. I didn't bring a camera and would not have used it even if I remembered it because I was having the time of my life with my baby boy.

I sat in the toddler pool and absorbed it all. I didn't want to lose a single moment. I watched as Nathan put both hands against the side of the pool saying "push" and grunting. I watched as he galloped from one end of the pool to the other, laughing the entire time. I was there for him whenever he would lose his balance and slip under the water. I let him ride on my back like a pony and helped him remember the order of the numbers as he counted repeatedly..."one, two, nine, ten, nine, ten".

Then we dried off and played some rugby in the house, a boy after his mama's heart.

rugby1-1-2

I guess you can say we both had the time of our lives today and it is not even over yet. I can't wait for my little pal to wake up so we can play some more. I am going to remember this day forever!!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

34 weeks pregnant

Not much has changed this week except that I'm back on an iron supplement. I had been taking iron supplements for anemia prior to this pregnancy but the midwives told me to discontinue the supplements because my iron was borderline. Being that I am exhausted, possibly more exhausted than should be expected, I am back on the supplement.

The midwives recommended I switch from a solid iron tablet to a liquid form of iron, which is more easily absorbed. The absorption rate of the liquid iron is 25% whereas the absorption rate of solid iron is only 2 to 10%. There are, however, two downsides to the liquid iron: it is ridiculously expensive and it smells and tastes like garbage. Seriously, I am gagging just thinking about it. It also wreaks havoc on my stomach, gives me cramps and makes me nauseous.

floradix-1

I am supposed to be taking 4 teaspoons of this per day but have only gotten up to 2 teaspoons and when I do take the iron it looks like I am taking shots. I have the medicine cup in one hand and a glass of juice in my other hand as a chaser. The juice also helps to aid in absorption since iron and vitamin C are best friends.

I better notice a surge in energy soon otherwise all this suffering would have been for nothing.

34 week belly-1

Click here to see more baby belly photos.

Being 34 weeks pregnant can be difficult at times, to learn more about it, please visit PregnancyCorner.com.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Payback

A few weeks ago Jay did something that hurt my feelings. Typically I would have treated myself to some retail therapy or pampering but now that we have no money for those extras I had to figure something else out.

What do you think?

jay nailpolish-2

Apparently I made him work in extreme conditions, our dungeon like living room. I laughed as he manhandled my toes to position them in the light. Although there may be bright orange nail polish all over my toes some of it did find its way to my toe nails. Maybe I will take him up on his offer of "sanding" the nail polish off my skin later.

I owe a sincere apology to my stain fearing husband for smudging my big toe all over his blue jeans. He told me to lift my foot without warning me about the nearby obstacles, mainly his leg. In my own defense, I didn't mean to smudge the polish, and it is his fault for hurting my feelings in the first place.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Projects

I don't know why I choose to undertake so many projects, especially when I am 8.5 months pregnant. I guess my life would be awfully boring if I didn't keep my creativity flowing at all times.

Currently, I have 3 projects on my plate that I would like to have finished before Baby Girl arrives. I would really like to have 2 of those finished before delivery day.

The first of those projects, which is going to require time, patience, and my father in law, is the wooden baby cradle. We have been studying the plans and slowly acquiring materials over the past several weeks and it looks like we are almost ready to begin the real work. My father in law wanted to make a cradle before Nathan was born but at that time I would not have appreciated the significance of a family heirloom. I feel differently now. In fact I picked out the plans for the cradle months ago and can't wait to lend a helping hand. The end result will look somewhat like this, but with our sleeping baby girl inside.

cradleplans

I plan to stain the cradle darker to match our master bedroom furniture, which is where the cradle will be. I am still researching Low/No VOC stains and varnishes to make it the safest place for a baby to sleep.

The second project is to sew the bumper for the above cradle using the following fabrics.

swatches

The fabric has arrived and is waiting for the next "sewing day" with my friends. Rather than using a polyurethane foam, which typically contains problematic ingredients, I ordered pads that are made from 100% polyester densified batting. Even better, they are non allergenic, mildew resistant, and won't disintegrate. And Tricia, I will definitely be contacting you for instructions on how to naturally dye the plain white organic sheets.

And my third project, which there is no urgency for me to complete, is to make towel hooks out of these vintage looking faucet handles.

porcelainfaucet

They are going to look really cute in our master bathroom once I figure out exactly how I am going to mount them on wood and once I figure out who gets "hot" and who gets "cold".

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Where's my brain...33 weeks pregnant

I don't know where my brain has gone this past week. It didn't even occur to me until this morning that I promised to post a 33 week pregnancy update and I never did, not like it is the end of the world if I don't.

This is a photograph that my husband took of me after the wedding I photographed last Saturday, a few days shy of 33 weeks. I was exhausted.

33 week preg post wedding-1

Tuesday I had my final ultrasound to check Baby Girl's growth and bowel. The technician estimated she was 4 pounds and 11 ounces, perfectly average. And the best news as of 33 weeks...no intestinal blockage, also known as meconium ileus (MI). Depending on the resource, anywhere from 10-20% of CF patients are affected by this obstruction of the bowel. According to John Hopkins CF Center, which I consider to be a reliable resource, the statistic is 18%.

Meconium Ileus is caused by thicker than normal meconium. MI can lead to perforation of the bowel, inflammation and infection of the abdomen. Meconium can often be flushed out with an enema but surgery is often required to remove the obstruction. Here is a diagram borrowed from John Hopkins CF Center.

 Meconium Ileus and Radiograph

Lucy, another young CFer, was born with MI and needed surgery to remove the blockage. Lucy's mom wrote about this experience here. Her post does contain graphic images so be forewarned. The images are intended to informative and not offensive.

Although we have not tested to determine if Baby Girl will have Cystic Fibrosis for certain, we are glad that no blockage (echogenic bowel) has been identified as of 33 weeks. We are praying that this does not change in the remaining 7 weeks.

After she is born we will determine if she carries both of our CF mutations and has CF but we would like to avoid immediate surgery after birth if possible.

And here is the 3D ultrasound photo of our Baby Girl. She was not cooperating, as usual. Her position is head down, face backward. Mama, Daddy, and big brother Nathan can't wait to meet you Baby Girl!!

33 week ultrasound-1

Click here to see more baby belly photos.

Being 33 weeks pregnant can be difficult at times, to learn more about it, please visit PregnancyCorner.com.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

He makes me so proud

Apparently Nathan can do his Vest and nebulizer treatments all by himself and according to my husband he has been able to do this for quite some time.

Whenever I am not able to do Nathan's airway treatments, Jay does them. He usually forgets medications in the kitchen so he asks Nathan to hold his own neb cup, and he does. I witnessed this for the first time this morning. My almost 23 month old makes me so proud.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Record Breaking News

Thought I would share my excitement for a moment. This afternoon Nathan ate SIX consecutive pieces of pasta, a mixture of penne and rotini to be exact, breaking his lifetime record of ZERO pieces.

Other than that bit of super exciting record breaking news, today is my 3 year wedding anniversary. Nothing special planned besides a trip to the supermarket but that doesn't change how much I adore my obsessive Nintendo playing husband.

Be back later with a 33 week pregnancy update and belly photo.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Inspiration

Many thanks to my sister in law, Megan, for giving me Baby Girl's cradle bedding inspiration.

swatches

I ordered fabric in the above colors and patterns to hopefully make the cradle bumper. I say hopefully because I've never actually made a bumper for a cradle or a crib. How difficult could it be though? I am not going to bother making a blanket because I have a ton of receiving blankets nor am I going to worry about making cradle sheets, plain white or pink will do just fine. Does anyone know if they make organic cradle sheets in any other color than natural beige or white, mainly pink?

Monday, July 5, 2010

A preview

A preview of some of the photos from the wedding I photographed on Saturday. The bride and groom gave me permission to post the photographs but I wanted to hold off until I have written consent, just in case.

It was a gorgeous day, a little bright, but not too humid. I absolutely loved the wild look of the flowers, almost like the bride picked them from a field, which was her intention.

07032010 eng ring-1

It was a wedding at home but that did not mean the wedding was small by any means, with over 250 guests present and a bridal party of 14. I couldn't have wished for a better location for my first wedding gig. Hay bales, a barn...

07032010 refresh sign-1

...and one awesome John Deere tractor!!!

07032010 tractor-1

07032010 tractor-1-2

And two days later I have almost fully recovered from being on my feet all day. I had so much fun and hope that I have an opportunity to do this again sometime.

Friday, July 2, 2010

First Gig

I will be photographing a wedding tomorrow, and not as a guest but as a paid photographer. I am extremely anxious and very excited at the same time.

I've been taking it easy for the majority of the week in preparation for the big day because I am quite pregnant and do not have the energy that I normally do.

Now all I have left to do is borrow my friend's black dress (I need to look professional and I don't think I could do black pants in July), top off my camera's battery, and clear my memory cards.

The wedding ceremony and reception are both outdoors so I am hoping for a nice day, not too hot and not too much sun preferably. Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

RED for Conner




Conner's memorial service took place yesterday. My husband and I have been extremely emotional since we learned of Conner's passing. I am no longer going to say Conner lost his fight to Cystic Fibrosis after reading what my CF friend, Josh, had to say:

CONNER DID NOT LOSE HIS FIGHT. That would imply that the rules were fair and just. He won because he never quit in a battle few thought he would survive from the get-go. Everyone who lives each day against all odds will NEVER lose their fight against the evil.

Do you want to know how many lives this little guy touched? Facebook was painted RED for Conner as many individuals changed their profile pictures to be RED in remembrance for him. Months before Conner's passing fellow CF mama, Jen, created an event, "RED FOR CONNER", on Facebook which currently has 570 guests.

Regis and Kelly both wore RED for Conner yesterday.

regis and kelly wear red

Chelsea Handler, from Chelsea Lately, sent out a request on Twitter for people to wear RED for Conner.
Please try and wear RED tomorrow for CONNER 7 year old passed away after losing his battle with Cystic Fibrosis.
But remember, as Josh wrote, he did not lose any battle.

chelsea handler red for conner

Last but not least, we wore RED. My husband wore RED. Nathan wore RED. Even Nathan's Boppa wore RED.

on boppas belly-1

One thing is certain, Conner will be remembered by many. Now I can finally say breathe easy, Conner.