Monday, July 25, 2011

Fun Project

First, I just have to say that since bragging about how great I was feeling in the last blog post, pregnancy karma has come back to bite me in the ass and remind me to stay humble. Please forgive me, I won't let it happen again. ;-)

Our baby doesn't have her own room or even a crib, but I've still been working on some crafty projects to decorate her future room.

A few weeks back I snagged this frame from the free box at a friends' garage sale.
Some of the paint was peeling off the sides of the frame, but I could see it had some potential. 

I really want to do a cluster of white frames in baby girl's room. I saw this idea on Pinterest, the place where a lot of ideas come from these days. The woman took paint sample cards and a craft punch to make some pretty cool framed "art" for super cheap. 

Here's my version:
(Please pardon the poor lighting in most of these photos)
I started out by spray painting the frame white...I didn't take any pics of that part though. Then I picked up some paint sample cards at Walmart that I thought would coordinate with baby's bedding. And punched out the butterflies with my handy dandy Martha Stewart craft punch.

I went to Hobby Lobby to see about cutting some new mats for the frame, unfortunately it was going to cost $20 for new mats. Since I was trying to keep this little project cheap, I decided to try an alternative method using the mats already in the frame.


I figured if it didn't work out I could always go get the custom mats cut. I bought some scrapbook paper to cut and glue to the existing mats.

Since this mat was going underneath it didn't matter if some of the gold showed on the edge.

I used some sticky tabs for scrapbooking to attach the butterflies.

Then I put the whole thing in the newly painted frame and: Ta da!

It turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself. All for less than $10, including the spray paint. 
Now to get a bedroom ready for this baby...

Friday, July 22, 2011

It's the final count down

Do do do doot doot. Yeah, you feel me.

Maybe not quite to the final countdown, but we will be meeting our little girl in exactly five weeks. Pretty crazy. Especially for me, considering that I have been pregnant for all of 2011. But I really can't complain. I feel really good. I told Ron this evening, "if all pregnancies were this easy, I think I could have 10 babies." Now I realize that is a HUGE exaggeration. Especially since I have not yet given birth, tried to get my body back to normal or had a tiny human fully dependent on me 24 hours a day. For the record, I have ZERO desire to raise 10 children. I'm just sayin' I feel pretty great, even with a heat index of 110.

This week I was able to borrow some maternity clothes from a friend who just had a baby. Total score! Now I should be able to make it through the next five weeks without having to buy anything else for myself. Although, I did see a cute top at Target last weekend... Oh, I got to hold little baby Reese. She was just 12 days old. I haven't held an infant that small in a few years. She's so cute! It made me both excited and scared about having my own wee baby.

Husband has pretty much been kicked out of the bed. Between me, the belly and all my pillows taking up most of the space, he's been crashing on the couch and occasionally the guest bed. Not to mention that his brain is crammed full of all the legal junk he can stuff in there, making it difficult for him to relax and fall asleep. He said this morning, "After I fixed up my bed last night..." Before he caught himself referring to the couch as "his bed." Methinks it is high time for a king size.

Not much new to report on the baby Rowe front. Had a quick little check up today. Her heartbeat sounds great and really strong. She's an active little booger. But she is definitely running out of room for her activities. I cannot figure out what part is pushing out where. But she is poking and pushing. Often there are some feet or maybe a little booty pushed up against my ribs on the right side. She's growing well and my belly size is measuring right on target. They think she'll be around 8 pounds, which doesn't surprise me. That notion did inspire me to do a little research (read: asking our moms) to find out the birth stats for mommy & daddy Rowe. I knew I was pretty big, and mom confirmed 8 lb 6 oz. Ron on the other hand, was just 5 lb 10 oz when he was born. We both had some hair when we were born too. You weren't getting a bunch of ultrasound pictures back in the 70's that's for sure. But we know from our many ultrasounds our little nubbin has a decent head of hair. And a first-class pout. I hope she has her daddy's long(er) eyelashes instead of my short, non-existent lashes. No matter what I know we are just going to think she is the cutest baby in the universe and love her to pieces.

Like I said, not much new baby news. I may just write another little post with some crafty projects I've been working on. Or maybe you'll just have to wait for another day. We'll see.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Lucky Seven?

I haven't posted in a while, so let me apologize in advance that this is probably going to be kind of long. 

Last Thursday (7.7.11) we went to STL again to meet with docs. We "tentatively" set baby's delivery date for August 26th. I keep saying tentative, because I am not ready to believe she will be here in just 7 weeks!

We had an ultrasound at the Fetal Care Institute. And got a pretty good look at our girl. She is getting big, too big to fit all in one screen. She weighs over 4 pounds now, right in the 50-55th percentile for size. She has long legs and lots of hair. Finally, finally after all the ultrasounds they were going to give us a 3D/4D peek at her face. But alas it was not to be. The little stinker was being stubborn and had hands and feet in front of her face the whole time. Darn it!

 I know this is a really terrible picture of a picture. But can you make out half her little nose there? And the side of her mouth, it's slightly open and she was sticking her tongue out. And part of her chin. Well, that's it, that's all we got. And even from that tiny little partial image, I kinda think she looks like me. Ha ha! Guess we'll just have to wait a little while longer to see.

We met with the brand new (to Cardinal Glennon) head of pediatric neurosurgery, Dr Elbabaa. He will do the surgical repair on baby Rowe's back. We were impressed. He answered all our questions before we even asked. He had been brought up to speed on our case and seems very confident in what he can do for her. He said that the location of her myelomeningocele, low on her back, is very good for future outlook. The fluid in the ventricles in her brain are enlarged. Which we expected. She will almost assuredly need to have a shunt placed sometime in her first year to keep excess fluid from building up in her brain.

We took a tour of the NICU at Cardinal Glennon. It is where baby girl will be spending some time after her surgery. I have to admit I was a bit overwhelmed, and I know it showed. Katie who we giving us the tour asked me a couple times if i was doing okay. The floor is really nice. She will have a private room. And Ron or I will be able to stay with her 24 hours a day if we want. There isn't really room for both of us to stay. But, we are candidates for accommodations at the Ronald McDonald House. There are three in the area. The closest one to Glennon is usually pretty full, but if we are willing to stay a little farther away we may get the option to move closer when something opens up. Since it is a charity the room there is available for $5 a day as long as we need. That is a huge relief. There is a kitchen, we can buy and store our own food there and volunteers come and make dinner for families every night. Since I am planning on nursing our little nub, I can get three meals a day provided at the hospital.

One of the most difficult parts of all of this is that baby will be delivered at one hospital and then she will be transferred by ambulance to Cardinal Glennon a few miles away. This leaves mommy (me) at St. Mary's to recover from a C-Section without my baby girl in the same place. I feel pretty strongly that Glennon is the best place for her care, so this is a necessary part of that. But it breaks my heart that I will not be able to hold or even see my sweet baby girl for a few days. And I know daddy is going to be torn as well, wanting to be in two places at once to take care of both his girls.

I've gotten spoiled by all my other doctors and their offices. The new fetal-maternal specialist we met kind of lost me at the shabbiness of the offices. I mean there were pee dribbles on the seat! And another restroom didn't even have any TP. WTH?!? Just one more visit to that office, I guess I can handle it. We were told that the maternity ward at St. Mary's is recently remodeled and really nice. Let's hope so. We'll get a tour when we go back on August 2nd.

So, in our "regular" pre-baby life. Ron is super busy studying for the bar. Coming down to big time crunch time, we are less than two weeks away from that. He was able to stop studying long enough to come to a couple baby showers this week. Our good friends the Pourneys hosted a wonderful shower at their house will a lot of our Columbia friends. Baby girl got lots of books and other necessities. We are really blessed to have great friends. Daddy was happy to receive some of his favorite "chew toys" that he had picked out for the registry. I had to explain why everyone laughed when he said that. When it's for a dog it's okay to call it a chew toy, for babies you usually call it a "teether." :-)
Then we had our final baby shower at my office. Lunch and presents with all most of my MAA co-workers. I was really blown away by how generous everyone is. I almost cried. We got a couple big items from our list - the swing and the video monitor - as well as some smaller baby necessities. So, so nice and very unexpected. Our guest room has totally turned into an explosion of baby stuff.

We are still crazy cat people. After the Warlock incident we stopped feeding all our friends. But then gray kitty came back...with one little baby in tow. How am I supposed to resist feeding this little furry face?

So it seems that Gray kitty and baby kitty live here pretty much full time. They tend to stay under our cars. And when the little guy gets spooked he runs in to the storm drain near the end of our driveway. So we continue to facilitate the kitty HIV epidemic on Calder Court. There are probably worse things.

Okay, so I think this post has gone on long enough (and taken me long enough to write).
Hope all is well.   -carmen