Sunday, January 31, 2010

Recommend your diaper bag!!!

Ladies, you all were so wonderful with recommending some of your baby products and I definitely appreciate all of your insight.  Now onto something that I can shop for that is "necessary" for the baby, but also something for me!!  I have looked at a few diaper bags and have no idea what I want except for a place for my cell phone, wallet, and lipstick.  I'm truly not even sure what goes in a diaper bag besides diapers and wipes!  I would think that you would need a burp cloth, an extra outfit, a pacifier, and then once they get older a few bibs and maybe one of those plastic placemats.  So, why the heck are they sooo big?  Obviously I must be missing a LOT, so fill me in on your favorite bag and what you keep in yours on a daily basis.  Also, are the little pacifier pods a good idea?

*The one above is the Skip Hop Studio Tote, and I really like the look of it.
*I would easily carry something super bright and fun, but I don't want one that is all pink or all blue.
*I'd like it to look more "grown-up" than babyish.  I do have to carry this for awhile.
*Shockingly, I don't want it monogrammed.

Thanks, ladies!! 

Friday, January 29, 2010


Today, for so many reasons, was NOT my day.  And the only thing I want to do is bake my way right out of it.  Too bad we still don't have an oven that works!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Anyone have any baking recipes I can do in the toaster oven or under the broiler setting? 

B and Junie are gone all weekend long, and even though it's nice to have some time to myself, I can't think of one thing to pull me out of this depressive state I am having.  Shopping isn't fun- maternity clothes just aren't that cute and I don't really NEED anything right now.  Don't know the sex so can't shop for puddin'.  Can only work on the nursery for short periods of time due to fumes.  Do not need to eat my way through this- gaining weight, even though preggers, is still really tough to deal with.  Need to clean/organize- not super exciting nor fun.  DVR is empty.  Really, really want to write a not so nice email in response to one I received- however, know repercussions would be awful and not worth it.  Sick of skillet meals and WANT MY OVEN BACK!!!!!!!!!! 

Okay, that's enough complaining for now.  I swear I am normally a cheery one!!  I'm just in a rough patch today (thanks to me letting others control my emotional state).  I am looking forward to the gym tomorrow a.m.- hopefully that will help me pick myself up a bit.  I am also very, very happy to be meeting up with an old high school friend tomorrow.  I get to meet her dear, darling daughter (who, from pictures, is simply presh).  That will be a huge bright spot. 

Have a wonderful weekend, blog friends.  I hope you all have great plans and exciting things to tell me on Monday!!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The newly painted dining room!!

So, here's the navy!!!  I love this picture because you can see how the navy really makes the wood in the room pop.  The room use to be red, and while it was a fine color, it definitely blended in with the wood, whereas, this color really makes the wood the standout point in the room. 

To the right is the foyer and the steps that lead upstairs.  You can also see the window treatments and more of the wood here. 

When we were in Seville, we bought four blue and white decorative plates and brought them home with us.  They're about 12-16" in diameter and all hand painted.  We love them!  We're going to hang them on the wall in here.  We have to buy dining room furniture (there is currently a table and chairs in there that we have inherited from my mother, but it's just not formal enough for us.), so I think we will hang the plates over the buffet we plan to buy.  The plates aren't exactly the same color as the walls, but it's definitely close enough for us!

Here you can see the gold chandelier, a good chunk of the navy walls against the trim and the ceiling, and our little bar cart in the corner.  Our original plans were to spray paint the chandelier because in the old room (red) the gold looked quite garish.  However, we have found that it looks good with the navy, so it's going to stay. 

Things we still have to do:  find table/chairs/buffet (B is PICKY about his tables, so this could take awhile), hang plates on the wall, and find one or two other pieces of artwork for the room.  One of our friends came over to see the house this weekend, and she just loved the color.  It's so nice to hear that b/c it took two coats of primer, a lot of sanding (don't ask) and three coats of paint to get it to look good.  Definitely a lot of work, but in the end, soooooo worth it. 

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Our family room

Our family room comes right off our kitchen.  They're definitely the two rooms that will always remain the heart of the home (and truly what sold us on the home in the first place).  We have a few more things we still need to do in here, but since we did buy new furniture, I thought I'd show you the current set up.

These are the comfy oversized chairs with matching ottoman.  The are in the bay window that overlooks the deck and the back yard. 

This is one of the two walls that goes into the kitchen.  The map is a nautical chart of Little Traverse Bay that we had framed (one of our favorite pieces).  Once puddin arrives, the pack and play will more than likely end up in that corner.  You can also see the pocket doors that divide the kitchen from the family room. 

Our couch (with the prime spot being taken up by Junie!) and a bit of the fireplace wall.  The mantle is not finished yet, so no good pictures to show.  We have a coffee table that I cut off, but it sits nicely in the area in front of the couch. 

Things we have yet to do in here:  varnish the armoire that goes on the other wall that attaches the kitchen to the family room, paint the fireplace screen from the current gold to black, figure out what we are going to do on the top of the mantle besides the few silver candlesticks that are already there, hang the oar (from the rowing club at Yale- B's Grandfather's) on the soffett above the bay window (where the red chairs are), and decide which artwork to hang behind the couch.  Most of that is just easy cosmetics, so we're sure it can be completed before the beginning of March (our deadline on our spreadsheet).

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Our new chandelier

There was a wine store down the street from our apt in Chicago called Lush.  Lush had two of these amazing wine glass chandeliers above their bar/tasting area in the store.  I always commented on how cool they were, and B surprised me at our rehearsal dinner with one to be placed into our first home. 

After we moved in, this was the first project after the boxes were unpacked.  We knew we had the perfect spot the minute we looked at the house, and so all we had to do was figure out how to play safely with electricity :)  We'd never done a project like that before, so both of us were a little nervous.  We googled it, prayed a bit(seriously I thought he might get eletrocuted), and got to work.  We were able to do it without killing ourselves, and now it is such a cool statement piece in our kitchen.  The table it sits above will eventually be a wine cork table top, and it is going to be sooooo cool. 

The picture above is from the kitchen island looking into the family room.  The pic below is with the light on looking up towards the ceiling

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

B and I had a great weekend with Mom and Ralph. We ended up getting the dining room painted, unloaded and put together all the furniture they had been storing for us, hung a bunch of artwork, had a great trip to Costco (!!!!), sat around by the fire with the dogs on Friday night, enjoyed a wonderful dinner in downtown GR on Sat night, and took a wonderful winter walk through the woods with the dogs on Sat morning. All in all it was a very productive and enjoyable weekend. My mom has arthritis in her wrists, so she cannot paint; therefore she spent most of Saturday organizing closets and drawers in rooms we hadn't gotten to yet. Sometimes things just need a mom's touch, you know? I plan on taking a bunch of pictures this week to show you what we have accomplished so far. I know I'm being a slacker lately on the blog; I just don't have time at work or at home to settle in front of the computer much. Doesn't my new job understand that working 5 9 or 10 hour days is killing my blogging life?? One huge accomplishment this weekend is that Blair and I created a spreadsheet with a baby list and a house list of tasks that need to be done. All have due dates on them so that we can structure our plans accordingly and cross off the tasks once accomplished. I'm thrilled to have a visual reminder of what we need to do vs what is already done. I put the most mundane and tiny tasks on there because even though they are small, they still take up time, and I want us to feel that we are accomplishing things regularly. One of our tasks this week is to get to Babies R Us and register. I've started with a few things online, but we really just need to get this OUT OF THE WAY!! I've also done a registry at Buy Buy Baby (mostly out east, but they have a lot of great products, slightly higher end then BRU, and they accept the Bed Bath and Beyond 20% coupons!!). For any of you new moms out there, I would love, love, love to know what your favorite baby items are (bottles, passys, toys, swaddlers, bathtub, etc, etc) so that I can look them up! I have found Baby Bargains to be an extremely helpful book in this regard as well. I have not caught up on my reader in days, so I hope that you all are well and had great weekends!! I'll try to catch up some today and leave you all some love :) Have a wonderful Tuesday!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Who Hoo!  The dining room is completely primed with this primer.  It has made our rooms a not so pretty grey color; however, it has completely covered the red that was previously in the room.  We have already bought the navy paint and will hopefully be getting it on the walls this weekend!!!  Edging isn't the most fun, but I've gotten better at it as I've gone along.  Thank goodness for wet soapy rags to clean up my small mistakes!! 
Other updates:
1.  My mom comes this weekend to visit.  I can't wait to show her the house and be able to spend some time with her.  She's super excited to go to babies r us and help us start our registry.

2.  Our new knobs for the kitchen cabinets arrived yesterday.  They make the kitchen look SO much better.  I'm thrilled with them.

3.  I swear I will take some pictures this weekend and update the blog with them next week.  There is a lot, lot, lot to do, so I've been hesistating on the pictures, but if I show you how "old" (read: dated) some of the things are, then you all will be REALLY impressed once we do even the bare minimum to make things cuter!

4.  Did I tell you that our oven blew up last week?  Yup, we had J and B over for Sunday night dinner and 10 minutes after we put in the pork roast, the bottom oven coil started sparking, turned a bright blue and then went black and completely cold.  (I was so afraid our brand new house was going to start on FIRE!)hgntmhn  ;/l   Now, we knew we would have to replace the oven eventually (it's originally to the house- ie 23 years old!!!), but we were hoping that we could do that in the fall.  Our darling realtor bought us a home warranty, so we called and the oven is covered!!!  We had a repair guy come out today and he is not sure if he can find a replacement coil (I really doubt it since it's so old), and if they can't find a replacement, we'll get an allowance for a new oven!!!  Ours is built into the wall and there is space for a double oven or a warming drawer with very little configuring cabinets, so I'm praying that the coil cannot be found and we'll get the allowance to get a head start on an amazing oven!!! 

That's it from here!  Happy Thursday to all of you out there :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Junebug's favorite Christmas present

A few other bloggers have talked about these darling dog collars from Mascot.  I think they are the CUTEST colloars I've ever seen and asked my brother and his girlfriend for one for Christmas for Junie B.  They were so sweet and got us the navy and yellow one for her.  While I adore the pink, she has had nothing but pink collars since we've had her, and B was getting a little sick of them.  So, navy and yellow it was!  I think it does make her look a little more like a boy, however, I still think the collar is the coolest!  I'm going to order the matching leash- I'm a big fan of matching :)  We've had it on her for a few weeks now, and it's held up SO well.  The dirt doesn't show, it's really thick and sturdy (great for a 106 lb puppy), and the yellow bone is the perfect accent color around her neck.  I would highly recommend it!

My mom also got us a darling collar and leash that match.  They have a navy background with a ribbon sewed on top that has all colors of sailboats on it.  It's super, duper preppy and darling and is going to be her summer set.  I may see if I can find the ribbon online somewhere as I'd love to sew some across a white sleeper and have Junie and the baby match!  If nothing else, it'd make a darling picture!!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Our inspiration nursery

Project Nursery was a blog I came across a year ago and added it to my reader right away.  I love, love, love the ideas on the site and knowing we wanted babies eventually, I figured it would be a great space to get inspiration from.  The author is one of the owners of Little Apple Designs out of LA, and she posts some of her own work as well as "real people" and other designer's nurseries. 

This picture just happened to be one of the pictures I consistently went back to, and as soon as I showed it to B, he totally agreed that it was perfect for our nursery.  What's funny is that it's actually the blogger's son's room!!  I love that it's traditional, clean, and with just a few accents it can be perfect for a boy or girl. 

Now, some of you will say that this is totally a baby's boy room, and I can see that for sure.  However, B and I adore the color blue, love the classic white furniture, and the lattice work on the accent wall is soooo cute.  B and I both think that it needs some cute accents for it to be made a little more girly, so we are adding a white, slightly ruffle-y bedskirt to the bottom of our crib, we are trying to find a white ornate 8x10 picture frame to frame a monogram over the crib, and our shelves will have pegs below them so that we can hang a white or light pink classic (probably smocked) dress. 

We have picked out a white chenille rocker for the room (scotchguarded of course!) and are looking for a white toybox.  While the dresser looks fantastic in this room, we have made the bold choice to add one big pop of color and instead will be going with this if it's a girl..........

Doesn't that pink accent dresser just pop against those blue beds?  It's just the perfect amount of girly!  I think with the few other small girly details (like a pink grosgrain ribbon holding up the monogrammed frame)the typical light blue and white all boy nursery will be able to be transformed into a sweet, perfectly appropriate girls room. 

If the baby is a boy, the dresser is going to be fire engine red and the monogram will have a red bow for it's pops of color, just in case you're wondering! 

We have sanded the dresser down and are going to give it one coat of white paint and primer all in one.  Once the baby arrives and the parental units come to stay with us, we're going to have one of the grandfathers paint it the appropriate color.  It'll be a good job to keep them busy! 

If any of you have any great nursery suggestions or other ideas, I'd love to hear them!  Also, if you have any recommendations on where to find a darling sheep rocker like the one in the first picture, let me know.  If you hate everything above and think I'm completely crazy, it's cool- just don't let me know :)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sometimes God just knows what you need!

This was my God Pause devotional for today.............

"All who believe and are baptized shall see the Lord's salvation."

What do babies know and believe? They know when they are loved. They sense when they are safe. They believe that certain things are to their benefit: a feeding, a change of diapers, a good burp, and a warm nap.

What do we know and believe? Pretty much the same thing, minus the diaper and burp. We know when we are loved. We sense when we are safe. And we believe that there are certain things that are beneficial for this life.

What has God promised to us in baptism? He has promised that we are loved and that we are safe in the arms of Jesus. He has promised that what we need for this life and the life to come--forgiveness, life and salvation--is given freely by a God who loves us so very much.

What do you know and believe?

Dear Lord, on this day we give thanks for the gift of our baptisms. As you first washed us with this water, continue to wash over us with your presence. Renew us, restore us, revitalize us to be the people you have called us to be. Amen.

Mark A. Grorud
St. Michael Lutheran Church, Omaha, Neb.
Master of Divinity, 1979

"All Who Believe and Are Baptized," ELW 442
1 All who believe and are baptized
Shall see the Lord's salvation;
Baptized into the death of Christ,
They are a new creation;
Through Christ's redemption they will stand
Among the glorious heav'nly band
Of ev'ry tribe and nation.

2 With one accord, O God, we pray,
Grant us your Holy Spirit;
Help us in our infirmity
Through Jesus' blood and merit;
Grant us to grow in grace each day
By holy Baptism, that we may
Eternal life inherit.

Today at church we discussed Jesus's baptism.  Also, one of the most darling, happiest baby girls was baptized.  Then I got this devotional in my in box.  Apparently, God has decided that it's time that B and I discuss puddin's spiritual future.  I grew up Catholic, and he grew up Episcopalian.  We were married in the Episcopal Church, and as long as we find an Episcopalian community here that we like, our children will be raised this way.  It is not that I don't love and appreciate the Catholic Church or the upbringing I received there.  We have talked quite a bit and decided that the Episcopal Church meets our current needs as a couple and, hopefully, as a family.  We did like the church we attended this a.m. and will be going back a few times to see if it's a good fit.  If it stands as our new church home, we then have to make the baptism decision..........................when to do it, who will be Godparents, what puddin' will wear, etc.  We're going to talk with both sets of parents this week to discuss our options on dates (Nov 2010, Jan 2011, Easter 2011, Pentacost 2011) and see what they think.  The Episcopal Church has set dates for baptism, and while I would prefer to baptize earlier rather than later (I was baptized at 3 weeks), we'll have to wait for awhile.  Did you all baptize your children?  When (or when were you yourself baptized)?  Any suggestions or things I need to know?  And, isn't this just a lovely devotional? 

Saturday, January 9, 2010

The baby bump!!

This picture was taken last Tuesday after our midwife apt.  I was 22 1/2 weeks this day.  I would say I've definitely "popped" and look very pregnant now.  I'm measuring almost exactly at my due date and on the ultrasound the baby was measuring at the 75th percentile.  So, it'll be a good sized baby due right around the 2nd week of May (all as expected!!!)

My boobs have definitely increased in size as well.  It's interesting b/c I've always wanted to be blessed with a larger chest, but now that I have it, I'll gladly give it back and go back to being able to wear tiny tanks with little support to the gym!!  It's just easier, and B doesn't mind :)   Funny how God does give you the right body!! 

By the way, the background in this picture is our dining room.  While 6 or 7 years ago, red would have definitely been the color I would have chosen for our dining room, our tastes have changed, so the room is currently primed with a first coat of primer, and we are working on picking out the new color.  Pictures to come in upcoming weeks!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Freezing legs- help me please!!

Okay, at what point on the temperature scale are you allowed to wear pants to church rather than a skirt or dress? I've definitely always been the "dress up" for church girl- definitely brought on by my very strict dress code mom. However, we went to church on Sunday, and it was only 13 degrees, and my legs were FREEZING outside and not much warmer inside.  (Yes, I was wearing nylons that were thin (pre-pregnancy tights are no longer fitting) however, tights are not THAT much warmer!!)

I definitely love to wear dresses in the summer- mostly because I own tons of darling sundresses/Lilly dresses that are fun to wear.  I do have quite a few winter dresses and skirts that I have for work attire, so it's not the lack of them that is making me question this.  However, churches are often large with huge soaring ceilings and therefore do not warm up well, especially here in the frozen tundra.  Many, many other people wear jeans to church, and while this is not something I will ever do (my mother's voice would be nagging me the whole service), are dress pants appropriate?  What about leggings with a really cute tunic or longer top? 

So, my fashionable and God fearing readers, I'm asking you to let me know what "appropriate" church attire is in the winter and at what temperature do you just give up and put the warmest thing on you own, praying that God realizes that you want to worship him however you can't do it if your teeth are chattering??  Thanks!  Mwah!!!

Friday, January 1, 2010

A fancy feast for 2010

I wanted to share with you a wonderful menu that B and I made at home for New Year's Eve this year.  Even if you don't consider yourself a cook, this is a pretty foolproof menu (as long as you can follow directions!).  It's a great meal for birthdays, Valentine's Day, anniversary celebrations, or any other important day that you want to commemorate.  I promise, it's delish and worth the time to set the table with your best dishes, light some candles, play some of your favorite music and enjoy the time at home together!

Filet with Balsamic Glaze
Roasted New Potatoes with Greens
Steamed Broccoli or Asparagus
A full-bodied red wine (I prefer Pinot Noir or Cab with this heavy of a steak dish)
Apple Turnovers with ice cream and caramel sauce
Molten Chocolate Cakes

While this is definitely not an everyday, weeknight meal, I hope that some of you will bookmark this and whip it up the next time you are planning a nice stay at home dinner (after the little ones are asleep!). 

Goals for 2010

I am definitely the type who prefers goals to resolutions.  Something about the checklist of goals that I can cross off is prefered to me.  With that said, here are mine for 2010.....

1.  Keep my body healthy and strong so that the birth of my first child in May will go as smoothly as possible.  Do this by continuing to work out, trying out some prenatal exercise videos (especially yoga ones to help with stretching), remembering to take my prenatal vitamins, washing my hands when around all my germy little patients, and increasing the amount of vegetables and fruit I eat on a daily basis.  I also want to add to this goal that I would like to see my body get back into it's pre-baby shape by the end of 2010.  While I know it may never look exactly the same, I want to be the best version of my body that I possibly can be by the end of the year.  Healthy mommy= healthy family.

2.  Settle into our house and make it truly "ours".  Do this by painting 6 rooms by May, cleaning the carpets, setting up and decorating the nursery, figuring out what we want for dining room furniture, keeping up on the housework (!!), making the cork table for the kitchen, set up the new wine glass light fixture, and spray painting the fireplace grate.

3.  Become an independent practitioner at work.  Continue to work on my patient and consult notes, become comfortable with dictating, become increasingly fluent with lab values, and get better at reading xrays and CT scans.  I am loving my new job and the group I am working with, and I want them to feel that when they hired me, they hired the right person. 

4.  Catch up with old friend who live in GR and find a few ways to make new ones as well. 

5.  Find a church that both of us feel comfortable in and draws us closer as individuals and as a couple to God.  There are tons of churches in this area, and while this goal may take us awhile, I will continue to pray for guidance in this area!!

6.  Support B in all his endeavors and goals for this year.  Show him how proud I am of him by complimenting him, giving him time to accomplish his goals (one of which is to run 1000 miles in 2010!!), and allowing him to be the best dad he can be by not constantly stepping on his toes or being an overbearing new mom. 

Hopefully writing this down and referring back to it will allow me to get these things DONE in 2010.  Best of luck to all of us as we strive to be our best selves in this new year!!

BTW, are you saying twenty ten or two thousand ten?  I think I'm in the two thousand ten camp.