Monday, July 29, 2013

Our Weekend of Emotions "The Waiting Game"

This weekend, I was pushed to learn the biggest lesson in patience I have learned thus far in my life. The waiting game has begun and I am incredibly anxious to hold my sweet baby girl in my arms. This past weekend is a bit of a blur full of hope, anxiety, excitement, a bit of fear & in the end, disappointment. I need to blog about this all. I need to remember this. As my Father in Law said to me last night, this is all part of her story. 

It all started Friday morning with our 37 week appointment. 
Our appointment in which I last minute changed my mind and suddenly felt it so important to have my midwife do a cervical exam to "check" me. This is where the excitement began. The exact reason I told myself all along I did not want a cervical exam until I was standing in L & D knowing it was time...because as I've been told over and over again, "I'll know." Well, I got checked and was told I was 2 cm dilated and 50% effaced. Which is progress, but in the big scheme of things, not very much. Not enough to say, "Its time." What led to the greater excitement was the fact that our midwife said she believes she will see me in L & D next weekend, "If not sooner!" That was mistake #1. From that moment on, it was all I could do to not be excited. To feel extreme anticipation to meet our baby. To hold our sweet girl in my arms that much sooner. 

So...Friday...exciting day, but an exhausting one as I had summer camp all day. 
I was warned from our midwife that Friday and Saturday may include some cramping and spotting but that it was all completely normal. I was prepared for that. What I wasn't prepared for were the signs that would follow. (There are many pre-labor signs that we have learned of recently...a couple that are a little too personal for me to even write on the blog, but ones I will remember simply by reading this sentence I am typing currently) So...gross, yet real, symptoms happened around 4:30pm Friday afternoon. Our anticipation grew even more as Matt & I read in all of our books, heard from friends/family & all over every Google board I could find...that this usually means just 48-72 hours until we would meet our Lillian. 

Friday night I had more contractions. Accompanied by cramps (the cramps I was warned of). 
What we weren't warned of was that my contractions could come in a pattern. Was that normal? We were ready. She never mentioned that being the case. 

Saturday morning, Matt had an exam. We had a plan. If I called 3 times in a row, he would leave his test immediately to come home and help me labor. My team kids had a performance at our local farmers market. I parked in a special place, told the police officer I was having contractions and warned all of my families..."I may not make it through the show." The excitement grew more as all of my kids and parents felt the excitement along with me. Mistake #2. 

During the show, I had little contractions and cramping. Now is where the blur begins.
Saturday, the second I got home, I started to do all that I could (ignoring my hip/back/pelvis pain that has been crippling me the past 10 weeks) to get my labor going. I cleaned vigorously while I waited for Matt to come home. I also took Cogsy on a decent walk. I ate spicy enchiladas for lunch. Contractions continued, but nothing too serious. Matt got home and it happened, all the anxiety hit. I cried. I mourned really. I mourned that each day she does not come now, is a day I do not get to stay home with her from work. I am on maternity leave as of Friday at 4pm. Each day that she is not here, unfortunately with my job, is a day that I won't get to stay home with her. I start working on September 28th whether that means I had 4 weeks home with her or 9 weeks home with her. The dates are set and people have registered. It's a done deal and it sucks just a little...Matt doesn't have that problem. Then came moments of sadness, resentment, hate towards my career & frustration at our current situation. Matt soothed me and we went on with our day. We walked more. Here is where more blur comes in.

Later that night we did what everyone told us to do to get her out...
And immediately following I had to pee. Of course.
I went pee, cleaned up & got dressed. The second I put my jeans on...GUSH. 
"Matt! My water just broke!" 
Matt ran into our walk in closet to find me smiling from ear to ear with "water" soaking through my jeans and me happy crying with extreme excitement. (It's strange that in that moment, you kind of feel the same as you do the moment you see that positive test knowing your life is about to change for the better forever...) I quickly took my pants off and ran into the bathroom where I peed again. Surely this had to be my water...I just peed, then after peed again.
We called our moms. Advice was different from both ends. My mom telling us to go for a walk and see if my cramping/contractions become stronger and if I leak more. Because, if it is indeed my water...more will definitely be coming out (this is what we were told later in L & D as we know...oops). Matt's mom told us to listen to the dr. and go in to the hospital right away, better safe than sorry. We did a little of both. I cried. Had a mini panic attack as I found out the midwife on call was the one of my three that I am not a fan of...I panicked. I suddenly became incredibly insecure. I thought for sure it was not time. Strange things like, "My nail polish is chipping," became super important as I wasn't "ready." We packed our toiletries into our previously ready to go and packed hospital bags. Fed Cogsy...I ate a snack...and, we took those "last" bump photos. Matt stood with me in our room for a moment, stopped me and just held me as we realized this may be the last time we are home here just the two of us. It was all so surreal (unfortunately, a moment I thought we would only have once). It was late at night. Maybe 10:30pm at this point. It was dark out and we were walking to our car with our bags, pillows and hope all in our arms. Hope that we would be staying and not be sent home. 

We got checked in. I had on the hospital gown. Had monitors on my belly. The whole works. 
This was it...
We were about to meet our baby. I was really in labor. The contractions were clear on the monitor. 
And then...I had my cervical check. 2 cm 70% effaced. Progress...but not really.
Then she checked for amniotic fluid...the moment we were waiting for. And...negative. She could still feel my bag of waters. It was still there. None had leaked. 

I simply peed my pants.


We had to get back into our car. You know, the one that was all packed and full of our bags, pillows & hope. The car that has had Lillian's carseat installed in it for weeks now. Yeah...that one.
We drove home calling our moms once again.

"False alarm." contractions were getting stronger. Painful even. 

Damnit...more hope.

I got home, took a shower, cried & timed my contractions for a good hour.
6 minutes...7 minutes...8 minutes...I fell asleep.

5:05am: Bam!
I wake up to a painful contraction. Painful enough to wake me up.
I decided to let Matt keep sleeping and lay in bed timing them as they came every 8 minutes and 30 seconds on the dot! That was it, I was certain we would be back to the hospital before Mel & Clint came over at noon. For a full hour they did this. Then I woke Matt up and decided to stop timing them until they became more intense and painful. I did all the last minute things that the night before had bothered me, including painting my nails and getting my birth plan all set up. I was ready. All day long. Every minute, every second. I was so happy. That's what I remember about that morning. Being in pain and being so pumped about it. Nothing could have brought down my mood. We went for an early morning walk to get breakfast. I was still having some pretty awesome contractions. I loved every one of them. "Bring it on!" is all I kept saying. I was so proud of how I handled them all. Matt and my dad both told me they were amazed at how I was handling it all. Confidence re-boosted. July 28th...that's a good day to be born, I told myself all day. One week from Matt's birthday. We could always go to Disneyland that week every year. Perfect. The contractions kept coming and when we got home from our walk I decided, you know what...I'm going to take a nap because if this is real, I'm going to be tired from the night before and our walk and yeah...good idea to sleep. I told Matt, wake me up at 10:00am, I'm just going to make this a power nap. 

Woke up at 11am. (Matt didn't want to wake me..erg!)


No contractions.
No cramps.



Mel & Clint came over, as was planned for the weekend anyway, and we walked again.
We took a 3.3 mile walk. Walked for 1 hour and 45 minutes. And the whole time...


We went to a movie last night, "Wolverine" hoping, this loud noise will piss her off (it always does) and they will come back.



All the day gained me was a lot of back pain and extremely swollen feet. 
Not getting to hold my darling girl.

I went to sleep completely drained. Drained of all the hope & excitement. Reality check.
Reality that I am not in control.
Reality that most likely, she won't be here anytime soon.
Reality that I won't have 9 or 8 weeks off with her. 
I may have 6. 
Reality that I work. ...a lot. I do all I can for our family and yet, I lost a full weekend with our daughter. Matt doesn't even know how lucky he is to get that with her. Well...he does actually. He wishes it was me who got it too. But...I don't, and...he does. 

Today, Monday, is going to be tough. 
Tomorrow too...and Wednesday, Thursday, Friday...

I am crying typing this.
The excitement/disappointment was a lot of emotions and a little too much. I have had crabby moments this pregnancy...lots of them. But never the random crazy pregnant lady crying.
Yeah, that's all starting now.

I hate knowing I am off work now and my maternity leave is just washing away without her here. 
Friday we have another appointment and my midwife will strip my membranes. We will have another weekend of hope. Hope that she'll come just a little early so she I can have just a few extra days of time solely spent with our Lilly Belle. No work. No emails. No dance. Just time with my daughter. 

It is now 4:52am on Monday morning and still I haven't felt anything real since before that stupid nap yesterday. 

I'm going to try to go back to bed.
Today we will not "try" anything to get her out. It's exhausting and hurts me physically.

I tried so hard. Matt's whole family was ready this weekend. They could have all met her. 
....pressure... I really did try. My back is reminding me of that already today.

So now, we wait. I soak up my time alone here at home with Matt while trying not to go crazy being off work and remembering that this weekend, was all just me peeing my pants.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Lillian Belle's Nursery Reveal!

Matt and I started planning Lillian Belle's Nursery almost 5 years ago. 
It is something that we started talking about when we were just dating and working/living at Walt Disney World. We knew from that time on that we would design our first child's room with a Peter Pan theme. Originally, the thought was that it would be modeled after the Darling Children's nursery. Then when we actually started trying to have a baby back in April of 2012, we decided Neverland would be a lot more fun for our child to grow in. It started coming all together thanks to Pinterest and all of our past ideas.

We have both put so much work and love into her sweet room.
And's real.

Lilly Belle's Neverland

{Most accurate photo of the wall color}

And I know this is an awful photo but I am seriously nesting and wanted to make sure this photo made it into this post so I took the picture at 8:00pm. Awful lighting. We just added Peter to the wall last week.

We put so much time and love into her room. Now we can't wait to hold her and play with her in there!!!

Source List:
Crib - Amazon (parents purchased for her) Babyletto Moda 3-in-1 in Espresso
Crib Mattress - Amazon (also purchased by my parents) Sealy Extra Firm Crib Mattress
Glider - Babies 'R' Us Rosie Glider in Sand
White Corner Shelves - Home Depot
Disney Plushes - The Disney Store at our local mall
Peter Pan's Flight Attraction Poster - Disneyland
Dumbo & Bullseye Plushes - Disneyland, California Adventure Midway Mania
Pluto Plush - The Disney Store at our local mall
Dinosaur Plush - Hand made by Matt's Aunt Mary
White Frames (all in room) - Ikea
Name Letters - Etsy GoingGaga
Art above crib - "Peter Pan" Mary Blair Concept Art book from Amazon
Lamp - Target
Rug - Handmade
Pink & White Minky Dot Blanket - Handmade
Crib Sheet - Handmade by Nana Lanese, fabric from
Teal Basket - Target 
Nightstand - Target
Dresser - Ikea Hemnes 6-drawer dresser
Mobile - DIY kit from Etsy Babyloveandkisses
Dresser Knobs - Anthropologie
Ubbi Diaper Pail - Gift from brother and sister-in-law, Amazon
Diaper Basket - Target
Changing Pad - Gift from Melissa, Amazon LA Baby
Changing Pad Cover - Gift from Melissa, Amazon Aden & Anais
Birch Paper Prints - Paper Store at our mall (small business), it's just wrapping paper
Clock & Lantern - Ikea
Garbage Pail - Target (Easter Basket)
Chalkboard - Handmade using a frame that was Matt's Grandma's 
Wall Color - Sherwin Williams Four Leaf Clover 

37 Weeks - Full Term!

{Forgot to take a photo by the barn so we decided it would be appropriate to take one in Lilly Belle's room instead...who knows, could be my last weekly photo!}

How Far Along?  37 Weeks! We are officially full-term ---- Hooray!!

How Big is Baby? Big.

Total Weight Gain: Too much.

Maternity Clothes? Always and most of my pants don't fit me anymore. I have 2 pairs of maternity pants that fit and then I just wear dresses and skirts everyday. Or Matt's basketball shorts. I could live in those.

Stretch Marks? Found a little one. Super disappointed. 

Sleep:  Hit or miss. That's to be expected now though.

Best Moment this Week: We are just enjoying all of our time together right now. The best part of the week was definitely celebrating Matt's birthday!

Miss Anything:  Nothing now that we're so close to meeting our sweet baby!

Movement:  Girlfriend is still jammin' away in there. Her sleep/awake patterns are becoming more apparent though which is really awesome to know. She is always very active around dinner time (6-8pm) and then again late (11pm-ish). The times during the day I haven't taken note of yet fully because I'm usually more active during the day but it's awesome to know when she'll be awake at night when she's out. So I know she sleeps from around 9-11pm -- good to know. 

Food Cravings: Nothing in particular anymore. Just hungry all the time.

Anything making you queasy or sick:  Just leaning forward. Ew.

Gender:  Our sweet baby girl :)

Symptoms: Back pain & crazy swollen legs/feet/hands

Labor Signs: Tons of Braxton Hicks accompanied by cramping. (Update as of Friday morning 7/26) -- 2 cm / 50% effaced. Progress. Also pumped that getting checked didn't hurt me. I just keep on surprising myself in the pain department. Such a confidence booster. Having a few more labor signs but a few are TMI for the blog.

Looking Forward to: Lillian Belle's Birth Day! Which could technically be any day now. Especially after todays appointment and what happened following this afternoon. Let's just say I believe my appointment shook things up a bit :)

Things to Note: (Written on Monday 7/22) Called in and got called in to our midwife today after thinking my water broke (large leak). I have been having lots of braxton hicks contractions and had painful cramping last night on top of it. We decided it best to call and she said she was glad we came in to get it checked out. She had to do a not so comfortable exam (that once again I handled amazingly if I do say so myself). She told me what she was going to have to do and then explained that sometimes it's very uncomfortable for people and it's okay if I cry. At that point Matt came over by me and rubbed my head and held my hand as I closed my eyes and started to breathe. She did the exam and I didn't feel an ounce of pain. Her exact words when it was over were "I think you are stronger than you think you are..." Yet another boost of confidence before labor (thank you, Laura!) So...turned out that she was pretty concerned that my water had broke but it did not. After the exam and she told us it was not amniotic fluid, I was like, "Well, I'm glad, but a little bummed too." She said, "Don't be! If it was your water, I would have just had to admit and induce you! I didn't want to freak you out and tell you before." I do NOT want to be induced, so she's right, we were very relieved. I had a contraction while I was in there with her so I got to ask her to quick feel and tell me if it was one or not. It was. Which means, I've been having tons. She said to start taking note when they become painful and a bit more regular. Exciting!

(Written on Wednesday 7/24) Got yet another boost of confidence tonight at our Coping with Confidence - Labor Techniques class. I am just feeling so ready to do this naturally. At this point I cannot imagine doing this any other way. I feel so strong and empowered right now. I have no fear at this point. I had some cramping last night and a bit today and each time I only got more excited and kept saying, "Bring it!" Matt and I are going to be rockstars together. We got this. Tonight I'm going to work on my playlist. Decided tonight to mix in a little Macklemore & Aerosmith to my Jason Mraz/Norah Jones/Priscilla Ahn mix. No better time than labor to let my true self come out and I am a hip hop teacher after all...Macklemore and a few other of my gangsta buddies should do the trick. 

Dear Lilly Belle

Dear Lilly,

You have been in mommy's tummy for 37 whole weeks now. From what we know, you're healthy and could make your grand entrance anytime now. I'm doing all that I can to stay busy to make the time to meeting you come a little bit faster. I have never been so excited or ready for anything in my whole life. Okay...maybe this compares just a smidge to how I felt right before knowing I was going to marry your daddy. This is a different kind of ready. Your daddy and I know that our lives are about to change forever. We get to be parents. Better yet...we get to be your parents! We're feeling pretty lucky about that right now. Your sweet little moses basket is all set up in our room now and every time I walk in there and see it I can't help but wish you were sleeping peacefully in there already. You are about to make our lives so much better. Your daddy and I love each other so much but we both know that we're about to love each other so much more knowing we made you together and that we get to raise you together. We can't wait to spend every second possible with you. We've already got big plans for lots of mommy-daddy time, but for the most part, we want to be together as a family. You're a lucky little girl my Lilly Belle. You're going to get to stay home with your daddy every single day. He's promised me that whenever I need to I can take you out for girl time, just the two of us. I imagine your days to be full of Disney music, silliness & play time with Cogsy Wogsy. Daddy is going to start taking over some of my office work so that when I am home, I'll get to play with you as much as possible. I can't wait to read you stories, have dance parties in the living room, do art projects & bake lots of yummy treats for daddy together!

We can already tell you are an incredibly special little girl. You do the funniest things already, even while you're still in my tummy. I call you my ninja baby, you are constantly rolling and kicking me, just like a little ninja. You're getting so big now. People still tell me on a daily basis that I'm "so tiny" but your daddy and I both know that compared to how "tiny" I used to're perfectly big and we know you're growing just fine in there.

I've had lots of signs in the past few weeks that you want to come into this world a little bit early. Now that we made it to 37 weeks, I'm perfectly okay with you coming anytime now! This morning we have our 37 week appointment and we're going to asked to be checked on just how ready to come early you might be. Daddy has a big two big accounting exams left, one Saturday & his final on Friday. If you held off until just after then, that would be even better. Don't worry though, we're prepared either way. Your daddy has been studying so hard and doing so well in school. He wants you to have the best life possible, too. We love you so much, Lilly the moon and back! I cannot wait to meet you!


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Baby Lillian's Fall Style

Now that it's almost August, I cannot help but get excited about fall! 
My absolute most favorite time of the year. It's going to be the best fall of all time this year with our sweet Lilly Belle in my arms everyday. I can't wait to get a picture of girlfriend in some leaves! 

We were walking around Target today and saw they had a few fall outfits out and I was browsing and found they have cool weather clothes out now, too. 
Trying my best today to ignore the fact that I'm now having some cramps when I have my Braxton Hicks...happened like 5 times now. I am praying for some patience because I'm going to drive myself crazy for the next few weeks if I can't think of anything else.

So, let's think about fall instead :)
Oh happy day! 

Here are my favorite finds for our sweet little babe!

We have another class tonight. "Coping with Confidence - Labor Coping Techniques". We're going to be in class with our friends Melissa & Peter so that will be fun. The four of us are going to get ice cream after. 

Happy Hump Day, everyone! 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Matt's 27th Birthday!

{written last night}

"This was the best birthday I've ever had with you!"...that is what Matt said to me during dinner tonight. ...mission accomplished.

Last night I promised him that I would make him breakfast in bed to eat while he opened his presents. I don't ever cook anymore so it was a big deal for him to not have to do the cooking for once. I made us both (and Lillian) a breakfast of over easy eggs, toast, bacon and added to Matt's plate...strawberries (of course -- I gave him the entire container) ; )

I was so excited to give him his presents this year! New headphones because he likes to stay up later than me lately and watches "Entourage" episodes in bed on his phone, a bag of Gardettos & a box of movie theater butter popcorn (his favorites) and also a box of his favorite Keurig iced coffee. (That was not the end of his presents for the day).

After breakfast, presents and getting ready for the day, we had to run one small errand to Target to get plastic cups for a birthday party that was happening at the studio today. Thank goodness we had to because when we got to the studio we found that all the power was out in Sammamish/Issaquah and there was no light for the party. I had to call the family and explain everything (she was mad, which was absolutely, she asked me to please continue calling to get it fixed as I explained, "Ma'am, if there is no power at Fred Meyer or McDonalds...I'm pretty sure we are not going to be the ones to get the special privilege of having our lights turned on...", crazy lady). We went to Fred Meyer and bought some battery operated night lights to put in the bathroom for the kids and batteries for the boom box. So...for about an hour and a half we had to deal with all of it but Matt was the best sport and I did all the running in and out of everywhere and didn't have him do a thing. (Even through all the pain I felt running in and out of everywhere....his special day!!) :) 

After we finished all of that, we headed to the mall. We got Auntie Anne's pretzels because he always wants them when we go to the mall and we never ever stop to get them. He was pretty pumped. We went to all of his favorite stores and did not step foot in any of my "Chelsea Stores" :) We ventured to the Apple Store and he showed me everything he wants us to one day get, Disney Store & then...the Microsoft Store. This stop I went in alone. I pre-ordered him the new Xbox One and bought him the College Football '14 (don't know the name). He was so so so excited!!! 

We headed home to take Cogsy out and then we were off to the movies.
We saw Pacific Rim in Imax 3-D and it was an awesome movie! We both really loved it. Lilly...not so much. Way too loud for little missy. She was kicking up a storm and we were both rubbing my tummy throughout the movie so she would know it was okay. Matt was really worried about her.

After the movie we headed to Matt's favorite restaurant for dinner, Outback Steakhouse. I'm not the biggest fan so we never go. Usually just on road trips or on Matt's birthday. It was actually pretty good and we had a great time just being together on such a fun date night! 

We are now home and I have his birthday cake in the oven. It would not be a birthday in our house without a Funfetti cake! We stopped and got ice cream to eat with it so later tonight we'll have cake and ice cream and I'll sing him "Happy Birthday". I'm also going to be sure to put 27 candles on it (which he's not so thrilled about). He bought some Strawberry Lemonade Mikes Hard Lemonade and is currently enjoying those while playing his new video game in his pajamas chillaxin' on the couch with Cogsy. 

Tomorrow night we will celebrate with his parents and that will be fun too! We're going to a restaurant called, "Matt's" :) 

We had such a great day together and I am so happy we were able to this year. He deserves it more than anyone I know. He has been nothing but an incredible husband and best friend to me. He always has my back and lately...always rubs my back :) (Even today in the Disney Store while I had a contraction lol). He has been the most supportive husband throughout this whole pregnancy and just through everything these past (almost) 5 years together. I'm so lucky to have him as my husband and Lilly Belle is THE luckiest girl in the world to have him as her daddy!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Studio Birthday Parties (Cuteness Overload)

When I'm not doing summer camp or teaching classes during the week, our weekends have been booked with birthday parties at the studio! We ran a Living Social deal (and are actually running one again right now) and have 25 birthday parties booked. So far we have only hosted 4 or 5 of them, but other than being 36 1/2 weeks pregnant, I am having a blast with them.

It's so much fun to decorate and host. My team kids have been helping me with them a ton and I am so thankful for that. Today I only had to dance a tiny bit and that's a really good thing because I am having more and more contractions lately. I'm pretty sure today I had a real one when I got home (yes! bring 'em on!)

Here are some fun pictures I snapped at today's party.

Not the fanciest of decor, but it's a good start! I got creative today to jazz up our chairs. We've always got spare tulle lying around the studio from all the tutus I make.

What little girl doesn't like dress up? And those swords...we've always got little brothers in attendance ;) 

I started making these for our party guests as favors in hopes that we will get some new children registered for our fall quarter! Today I had a mom say she is going to sign her daughter up for two classes. Perfect! The girls loved taking these wands home today.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Friday's Love List

I am linking up with Brittany over at The Magnolia Pair for "Friday's Love List"

The Magnolia Pair

1. I loved having this week off from dance camp. I checked in only a few times and the girls had it all under control. I got so much accomplished while I got to be at home and did not have to worry at all that I wasn't there in charge as usual. Our apartment is now crazy clean, I have read and researched a ton for Lillian's arrival & I was a crafting machine. Matt will most likely be glad when I'm back to camp next week though as I drove him crazy with all of my lists and non-stop nesting.

2. I am so excited about our most recent purchase for Lillian. We finally got her moses basket. I had been set on getting her one I had found at a local baby boutique and it was also on Amazon...then, by the time we were actually ready to purchase it, they no longer make it. So it was back to square one where I quickly realized that I was not too pleased with most of the reviews I was reading on the moses baskets available on Amazon. So...we went all out and ended up buying her this beautiful basked from Restoration Hardware Baby. Yikes. We have been very blessed that so far the only other big purchase we had to make for her was her dresser (which was just from Ikea). Knowing we will one day have another child use this basket makes it feel better as well. Who knows, maybe there will be some nieces or nephews who can also use it one day. It's just so beautiful and it's going to be arriving today (Friday!) We will also be buying her the rocker that goes with it. I'm so in love knowing that our sweet girl will be sleeping beside us in such a lovely place.

3. Mom & Dad Lanese have booked our family trip for a 7-night Caribbean Disney Cruise for December of 2014. The whole family will be going all together. Matt and I are beyond thrilled and thankful. We will be taking Lillian to Walt Disney World the week before as well. It will be our first time back since we lived/worked there together. So exciting!

4. I have been reading "Happiest Baby on the Block" this week and am really loving the realizations I am having from reading it. Just one more confidence booster that Matt and I have got this. Matt said today, "I think most people are nervous when they are this close to having a baby. I'm not nervous at all, just so ready to be a Dad." I feel the same way. No nerves what so ever. All excitement. We both agreed that for many people, becoming parents is something that puts a riff in their relationship, for us, it's only going to make us stronger. We were meant to be a family.

5. Is it too early to be excited about fall? Yes, I know it's July. Pumpkin Spice Lattes. College Football (that I don't watch but it makes me feel warm inside when it's on and it just feels so "fall"). Trips to Ben Franklin while Matt watches college football --- Lillian will get to come with me this year. Pumpkin everything. Crisp air. Sweaters & fun scarves. I'm pumped. It's my favorite. Also, I'm dying from this heat. They say it feels 10 degrees hotter when you're pregnant. 

6. I am loving that we are just about one month from meeting our sweet baby girl. I daydream about her all day long. The time is going fast and slow all at the same time. I am doing my best to keep busy and soak up every single one of her ninja kicks ;)

{blurry because I stole it from Facebook...sneak peak of our maternity session}

Happy Friday, Everyone!
We have our 36 week appointment this morning. So exciting!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

36 Weeks!

How Far Along?  36 Weeks! 28 days until our due date!

How Big is Baby? Big. Ha, I'm not sure.

Total Weight Gain: Probably still around 40 lbs.

Maternity Clothes? Yes, mixed with some summer dresses and maxi skirts from my normal wardrobe.

Stretch Marks? Still none. 

Sleep: Had 3 really good nights of sleep this week. I'll take it. 

Best Moment this Week: On Sunday I went to my friend Melissa's baby shower and before hand we had mani/pedi's. Getting my feet & legs massaged was the best. Also Matt has been giving me foot massages almost every night because my feet are so swollen and that is something I've definitely looked forward to! I've also taken this week off from camp. Not so sure that was a good idea as I went nesting crazy and am now anxious because there is literally nothing left to clean or organize. It's driving me crazy. Ready for Lillian to be here and keep me busy ;)

Miss Anything: Not really. Just soaking it all in. 

Movement:  I thought babies were supposed to start calming down when they're this big? Girlfriend woke me up and kept me up 2 nights ago with her kicks, rolls and balling up. She is not a fan of staying still. It will be really interesting to see how her temperament is when she's born. She also has tons of hiccups everyday. She's so cute already, I can't even stand it.

Food Cravings: Nothing in particular anymore -- just hungry all the time.

Anything making you queasy or sick:  leaning forward in my chair. 

Gender:  Baby girl!

Symptoms: Heartburn/indigestion. Restless leg syndrome. Swollen feet/legs/hands. NESTING!

Labor Signs: Not any specifically new ones this week (which is probably a good thing). Sometimes she feels super low but I don't know that I feel that consistently enough to say "she's dropped".

Looking Forward to: Meeting our sweet baby girl. I think about her all day long -- 'when will she be born?'... 'will she have hair? what color?' ... 'how big is she going to be?' ... 'will she be as active when she's born as she has been in my tummy?' So many questions that I can't wait to have answered. Matt and I are both just so excited for the moment we get to hold her for the first time! 

DIY Hospital Labor & Delivery Gown

I sure am getting my craft on over here. I have been wanting my own hospital gown but all of them on Etsy and that I see in online boutiques are close to $60.00. I could not bring myself to buy this knowing it is going to get extremely dirty and be something I definitely only wear once. We are having my friend Jessica in the room with us taking professional photos of my labor and Lilly Belle's birth so I really wanted to be wearing something that I feel more comfortable in and that will be something I feel "beautiful" in looking back at all these pictures for the rest of my life. Next to our wedding...the most important pictures of our life. 

I have been researching and pinning and found all of my favorite parts of each gown and combine them all into one fabulous design. I am in no way a seamstress and am very much a beginner when it comes to sewing. I am just counting on my common sense and creativity to make this one work out.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment down below.
And if you like it, feel free to Pin away! 

My total cost for this project was just $26.00. Not too bad.

I'll stop blabbing now and get going on the "how to". Have fun!


Supplies Needed:

- 2 yards cotton fabric
- bias tape (optional)
-7/8" grosgrain ribbon
-____" ribbon

How To:

1. Wash and iron your fabric. (I washed mine in Dreft because I am no obsessed with it)

2. Cut your fabric into two equal pieces. I measured mine so it would be large and comfortable enough to really move around in as I am going to be trying this naturally. 
Measured out to be 42"x32".

3. Fold and iron the bottom of one piece of fabric to create a 1/2" hem and then pin to prepare for sewing. (This piece will be the front of your gown)

4. Fold and iron the top of each piece of fabric (which will be the top of your gown) to leave enough room to string the ribbon straps through. I made my hem to be 1.5".

5. Sew your top hems all the way across.

6. Match up both pieces of your fabric so the pattern is facing each other inside out. Measure 12" down from the top of your gown and begin pinning there. You will want to leave a 10-12" space open which will become the holes for your arms. Pin all the way down both sides and then sew.

7. Cut a slit 12" down from the top on your second piece of fabric (the back of your dress). This slit will allow for an epidural or spinal to be put into place if need be.

8. Fold, pin & iron a hem along the entire bottom of your gown. Make sure to do this step after you have already cut your slit down the back. Sew hem.

9. Pin your bias tape all along the edge of your arm holes.

10. Sew your bias tape to your gown.

11. Cut your strap ribbon into two 42" strips.

12. Fold edges and sew so your ribbon does not fray.

13. Put a safety pin on the end of your ribbon and snake it through the top hem of your gown.

14. After you have snaked your ribbon all the way through, fold in the edges so it looks clean and sew closed. This will also make sure your ribbon never falls out. Be sure to scrunch up the top of your gown to your liking first. I left about 8" of ribbon on each end so I could knot it.

15. Fold, pin & Sew your back slit to create a nice hem.

16. Cut your back closure ribbon into 8" strips. This step could also be replaced by velcro which my husband pointed out to me AFTER I was done spending 20 minutes on this step. (Annoying because he's totally right...much easier). I placed my ribbons all the way down my dress every 2" so that my bum won't show at all.


(Ignore my sewing flub shown up close in this photo)
I made sure that the gown ties on my shoulders so that it will be easy for me to nurse Lillian and have skin-to-skin with her right away.

Matt: Why did you do all these ribbons?! It's going to take forever to tie. You realize this isn't a wedding dress right?
Me: Seriously just stop and take the pictures. Ugh.

The reason for the opening in back is just in case I do decide on an epidural. (Which I'm still determined to not have to get). I got this! I want to be myself immediately after she's born. I've been waiting 36 weeks now to feel like myself. I don't even want 3 more hours stuck in a bed not being able to move.

Anyways.....Here's the lovely back lol (our recommendation: use velcro...)

14 ties down the back and all, we are now absolutely 100% ready for the big day. Now we just wait. And wait, and wait... Can you tell I'm getting impatient?