Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Gwen Naomi

She was born yesterday at about 6:15 pm. 6 lbs 6 oz, 18 1/2 inches long. She has blond hair, really long fingers and toes, and a cute little dimple in each cheek. We're all doing great! Will post more later.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

handmade wire rings

For Christmas I made matching sterling silver rings for my sisters inspired by this. They turned out pretty great! I had to be kind of sneaky to try to figure out everyone's ring size without being obvious. It's hard to tell in these pictures, but the beads are pretty tiny and it makes it look really simple and delicate. I'll have to post a tutorial on how to make them eventually because it took me a while to figure out a good way to do it so that both sides look the same. The beads were too small to feed the wire through twice otherwise it would be really easy. The sterling silver wire and beads were kind of expensive. I got them for half off which made it do-able. You could definitely do this with any wire or beads and it would be a great, cheap craft. I'll get a tutorial up eventually. But for now I just wanted to share!

Thanks to my Grandma Tyler who gave me the Hobby Lobby gift card that made this possible!

oh baby!

(another cute picture of my niece Lily)

Lately Jonas has been saying baby all the time and pointing to pictures of babies and picking up and hugging dolls, etc. He was eating dinner and said "oh Bay-BEE!" in the cutest way that's hard to describe. I think he's catching on somehow.

We go into the hospital to be induced tomorrow morning. Tonight we're spending our time cleaning and packing. I picked out her little outfit to bring her home and it made me pretty excited. It's really going to happen! Sheesh, I hope it all goes okay. Wish me luck!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

4 more days

Not until christmas... until Gwen comes. (That is if all goes according to plan. ha.) We've rearranged the nursery, cleaned just about everything including the carpets, and changed the oil. I'm feeling pretty good and ready for her to come now. It's amazing how much cleaning made me feel better about her coming. There's something to that nesting thing that people talk about. I just couldn't rest until the carpets were cleaned. And now that they are - I'm doing much much better. :)It's been fun doing things with Jonas these last few days. We went down to BYU and saw the MOA exhibit and then he danced to these singing Elmos in the bookstore. It's fun to see him grow up. He still looks pretty small to me - but I'm sure he's going to look so huge and capable compared to Gwen. I'm really excited for him to have a sister. This kid needs some more entertainment.

I've been kind of self-conscious lately that my belly isn't big enough. Ridiculous, I know. But people never believe that I'm almost 9 months pregnant. I'm not sure why... I'm feeling pretty big, but I've gotten it enough that it makes me a little worried. Do people just say that because it's supposed to be a compliment? Probably, but I kinda feel myself getting a little pouty and scared. "Really? Uh-oh. is that bad? Is she not big enough? Sheesh, maybe I'm not as far along as I thought. What if there's something wrong?" yadda yadda yadda. But my dr. says she's measuring well, so I'll just not worry about it. I think that it's just because I'm long waisted or carry in my back or something like that. I dunno. bah! Done worrying about it.

Speaking of babies - here's my cute niece playing Jesus in the manger for our family nativity. haha, such a cute little face. She had that scowl on for a while but she warmed up to it after a bit. (maybe warmed up a little too much because she had a blow out. oh boy, blow-outs... here we go again.) It's fun to see and hold her. It makes me excited for my own. But like Russell said - she's so cute that she's a pretty tough act to follow. i hope that Gwen's up to it.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

oh yeah, just remembered

This is why I'm having a baby right now. Why Jonas and Gwen will only be 16 months apart. Why I'm itchy and tired.

Because I want my kids to have siblings.

That's the best thing my parents ever did for me. John and I are 1 year apart, which is insanity, yes, but we were such good friends growing up. And then Lauren came less than 2 years after me. I always had a buddy. It was such a great way to grow up. I want to give that to my kids.

I'm not going to be able to keep up with this timing. A break is definitely going to be in order. But I just need to remember that all this is an investment for the benefit of my kids. The price of getting a person is pregnancy, birth, delivery, and the needy newborn, toddler, kid phases. And people are worth it!

Even worth not being able to sleep, heartburn, waking up because of fetal hiccups, insane itching at 5 in the morning, etc. All worth it. :)

Monday, December 20, 2010

trying to remember to breathe

When we were little kids running out the door my mom used to call out "Don't forget to breathe!". Just a funny little thing she always did. I never thought it was actually good advice until recently. I've been feeling like I can't breathe lately, which could be because I'm almost 9 months pregnant and Gwen's taking up all my breathing room, or it could be because I'm freaking out. She's coming in a week. I don't feel ready. Our house is a mess. I'm a mess. I don't know how I'm going to handle a newborn AND Jonas. That seems so wimpy. Most women I know have way more than two kids... which is becoming more and more amazing.

I feel like I should be excited. A new baby! A beautiful little girl! What could be more wonderful?! But I just feel overwhelmed. I feel like our little family has been constantly sick the last month, and that Jonas has been crying for about that long. If I can't keep myself happy, or Jonas happy, how am I going to do any better with another kid? Winter's looming and I feel like I'm going to be stuck down in this little basement apartment until spring with two crying babies, and one crying mommy. Am I just hormonal because I'm pregnant? Probably. Will that change at all once I have the baby? I hope so... but I don't know.

Any advice? How do other mom's cope with this? For now Russell and I are going to really deep clean the apartment, I'm going to try listening to cheerful music and pray my eyes out. And then just hold on. That's about all I can think of at the moment.

oh wait. I just realized I'm hungry. Yeah. Food will probably help.

easy blanket for gwen

I made this little blanket for Gwen a few days ago. It's made from forgotten fabric that we found at my mom's house - which is great because it's free! The paisley is flannel and the yellow pinstripe is cotton. I didn't use any batting so that it would be a great usable layering blanket. It's soft and cuddly and simple. One more thing checked off the list. :)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

made me laugh

This website is always good for a laugh - but this one is kinda sweet too. Haha, kids. She said that when she was little she liked to crawl in and lay on all the warm clothes. Don't get any ideas Jonas...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

we are a happy family

There's gonna be four of us pretty soon - so we thought that we should take some pictures while we're still... just us. :)

Kathryn was nice enough to take this for us on a moments notice. Thanks Kathryn!

Monday, December 13, 2010

tiny = cute

Either it's a mini gingerbread house or a giaint mug. just kidding. I think this is fun. But it leads to the question - is gingerbread good with hot cocoa? I don't know if I've ever actually eaten gingerbread. An experiment is in order.

easy as it gets diy tree skirt

I had leftover felt from making my advent calendar - so I used the rest to make a fun-circus-ish-maybe-modern-possibly-retro-who-cares-what-it-is-it's-cute tree skirt. It was so easy and I love how it's kinda funky and works so well with my tree ornaments.

I cut a half circle out of each color, using a GIANT bowl I have as a guide. Then cut them into smaller halves until i had the pie-slice sizes that I wanted. Using one piece as a pattern I cut out a couple more "slices" of each color to make up for the seams so that the tree skirt would overlap in the back.

Then I just sewed them together alternating colors, cut a hole in the center, trimmed the outside to make it even, and voila! A tree skirt!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

paper trees and snowmen

I was in charge of the decorations for a primary worker christmas dinner, but we didn't have any money in the budget for decorations. So - I had to get creative. :) These would have been easy if I was only making a few, but I had to make 8 of each and it started to get a little tedious. But we did it! And I did it using things I already had so it only cost the $2 for the wooden spools. The beads to top them off are cut from mardi gras necklaces that I got for the advent calendar I did.

I started making these trees and Russell said that I should make little snowmen to go with them. Yes! Then he said that it's ironic that we make paper out of trees, and now I was trying to make it back into trees. Yes again - but not as helpful, focus Russell. We figured out how to make these cute little snowmen cutting out three of the snowmen pattern below on a fold with white cardstock, and taping them together by their folded centers. It's so easy and they turned out great.

The instructions for these trees are found here. Some tips I found out is that it's much easier to make them out of paper than cardstock, or construction paper. Paper makes cleaner lines, folds much easier, and keeps its shape better. The big light green ones were made with construction paper that we had in our primary cabinet, and the folds didn't hold as well. It kinda makes them look like fatter trees, which is fine, but the fatter they are, the easier they topple. You could also try cutting them out of wrapping paper if you have it or wanted to do some cool patterns.

Here's what the trees are doing now - decorating our office.

If you want to make them too here's a pattern that I made to make it easier to cut out the circles etc. Print on an 8 1/2 x 11. The smaller set of circles is for one smaller tree out of 8 1/2 x 11 paper. The larger circles is for the larger trees to be cut out of 12x18 paper.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

diy advent calendar

Well, I made an advent calendar that'll hopefully be fun for the kids through the years... because, frankly, I'm sick to death of looking at it. It took longer than I was planning and now that it's done all I can think about is that I wish that I would have used white felt instead of cream. what the heck was I thinking?

You know when you work on something for too long and then all you can see are the little flaws? I've got a pretty bad case of that. I shoulda pinned on the rows before I sewed it together. I should iron it... meh. Can you tell that I'm a little crafted out?

To make this I just basically winged it. I cut the tree shape out of green and cream felt, leaving a trunk on the cream so I could attach the brown felt onto it. I sewed the velcro squares onto the green felt, and then lined the back with cream so that it would look nice and clean from behind (which is important as you can clearly see. I mean, what would the door be thinking right now if it could see all those sewing lines?!) I used mardi gras beads as the garland and just stitched the end of each strand on by hand. When it was hung up it curled into itself because of the garland, so I used kitchen skewers I had as stabilizers. I sewed three sets of horizontal parallel lines in the tiers of the tree and cut a little hole in the cream liner from behind and pushed in the skewers. I'm actually pretty proud of that. Pretty resourceful of me huh!

For the ornaments I cut out the shapes in the assorted color and cream lining felts. I sewed the velcro square onto the lining then sewed the the front and back together, embellishing as I went.

I still haven't finished all of the ornaments. It's been a few days where all I need are a few more left. I just keep thinking I'll get the motivation from somewhere. Meh. I'll finish them eventually.

For this part I cut out a giant rectangle out of red and cream lining. I sewed them together and put skewer pockets in the top and the bottom for stability. Then I cut out strips of cream and green for the pockets.

For the numbers I printed and cut out 0-9 in a font that I liked, and traced them onto the cream felt with a washable fabric marker. Then I cut along the lines (I used special spring-loaded scissors that my mother-in-law had and they were soooo nice). I laid the cream on top of the green and sewed them together along the top of the strips with red thread. Then I sewed around each number which is insanity. I did it because I could picture little fingers in the future trying to rip it apart and I thought that it would be more durable - but it took FOREVER. Lastly, I sewed the strips onto the red felt with red string, sewing pocket dividers as I went.

Phew. Well, it was a lot of work, but it was fun to be able to create something and figure things out on my own. And hey! Now it's done and I've got it forever! Hopefully our kids will like it as the years go by.

Friday, December 10, 2010

$1 stockings

When Russell and I were first married we bought a couple of these stockings at Target for $1, planning on upgrading to something nicer later when I had more of an idea what I wanted for more permanent stockings.

Last year Jonas had just been born and we kinda... ahem... didn't get him a stocking.

This year we found the same stockings at Target for the same price so we got a couple more and I made them a little nicer and more personal by stitching our names on them.

I printed out our names using my favorite Lobster font. Then put the print-outs underneath the fabric and used a washable fabric marker to trace over the lines. Then just stitched away. It was actually a pretty quick, fun and satisfying project. And you can't get a better price, so I'm happy with how it turned out.

When Emma (my 6 yr old sister) saw them, she said that I messed up and I got the colors wrong. "Red should go with red and green should go with green." oops. Sorry Emma.

Gwen won't be here for Christmas - but we found out that because of my crazy third trimester itching I'm going to be induced on Dec. 27th. Ah! I don't know whether to be scared or excited, relieved or worried. I'll just cover all my bases and be a complicated emotional wreck.
And there you have it. $1 stockings.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

gift ideas

Thank goodness we're pretty much done with all our christmas shopping. But these were things that I bookmarked anyway. For future reference. I should just title my blog that... almost everything I post is for future reference.

Above For friends - diy monogrammed mugs.

For me or my sisters - Delicate silver bead ring $25

For older kids or anyone who likes Sudoku - Colorku $30

For a design-conscious mom - ABC Poster $12

For Younger Kids - Matchbox Mice $28

For babies - Ikea baby gym $25

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

more christmas tutorials

I think I am pretty much all diy-ed out for Christmas decorations. I'm back in baby mode now, and if I make anything I think it will be for her. But I thought these had some great potential and wanted to keep them for the future. :)

Above - diy felt wreath.

diy starburst ornament.

left - sliceform christmas tree. right - recycled paper wreath. These two have some issues, but with a few color changes I think they could be great!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

diy boy clothes

For some reason it never occured to me that I could make boy clothes until I've been making things for Gwen. And then I remember, "oh yeah! I have another kid. I could do something for him too.". Some things are just more trouble than their worth. But I liked these tutorials and am thinking about attempting them one of these days.

Above - cute monster applique. (I like monsters)

the "90 minute shirt".

Sweater vest. (not a huge fan of the colors on this, but the idea of taking a large ugly man's sweater and making a cute little vest is something I'm totally up for.)