Friday, January 24, 2014

Baby Girl Nursery Inspiration

Happy Friday! It's an ice day here, so Husband gets to rest at home ( me rearrange and organize stuff when the nesting mood strikes...cough, cough) and have a long weekend! I've spent quite a bit of time over the last week or two honing my nursery design ideas, and this is where I've arrived: Vintage ABCs with mint, red, and pops of yellow.

I'm not huge on using pale pink in decor, although I'm sure our little lady will be decked out in all the girly attire anyone's heart could desire. Bring on the pink dresses and giant bows, but I want her nursery to be feminine without being too frilly. Clothes can and must be changed frequently, but her room will be her room for several years (hopefully with only minor modifications), so I don't want anything too babyish or girly and, let's be honest, for the first several months, the vibe of her room is more for me than for her.

Without further ado, here's the current plan, and I'll let you know how the final product turns out in a few months!

  1. White Jenny Lind crib with a ruffled crib skirt and simple crib sheet (maybe in red polka dots)
  2. DIY pinwheel mobile
  3. The fabric that is the centerpiece of the room design (I want to make a cornice for the window in the center of the room with this fabric and then use it sparingly in the room because it's so busy. It screams Vintage ABCs. :)
  4. Mint walls
  5. I'd love to find a vintage red or yellow dresser, but the Ikea Malm grey one is a backup plan. 
  6. Focus wall with uniform alphabet letters (I may cover mine in coordinating scrapbook paper.)
  7. Sentimental stuff from my girlhood (I have a couple Madame Alexander dolls that would add the perfect vintage flair to a shelf in my daughter's nursery.)
  8. Free printable alphabet from The Handmade Home with whimsical words and images (A for Adventure...)
  9. Classic wooden alphabet blocks (I think my mom still has the ones that featured in my ABC nursery.)
  10. Embroidery hoops with snippets of the coordinating fabrics used in the room
  11. A vintage-vibe rug in yellow or red
  12. Sheet music for "Great is Thy Faithfulness" (This hymn is really speaking to me during pregnancy, and since her Daddy's a musician, there need to be musical details in the room.)
  13. Pom-pom curtains from Anthropologie (I think I can DIY these for less than half the cost.)
  14. Button initial (maybe in one of the embroidery hoops)
  15. Vintage paper doll art (I found free printable 1950s paper dolls and have a plan to arrange the outfits to make custom artwork.)

Monday, January 20, 2014

Fourth Letter to First Daughter

January 20, 2013

Dear child of mine,

We found out that you're a little girl one week ago, and now it seems like I've always known that you were the one taking up room in my belly and bouncing around to get away from the Doppler monitor. It's been so much fun to call you by name, and since we didn't give anyone input, but just announced what your name is, everyone has been highly complimentary. :)

Your daddy is over-the-moon excited to meet you, and I'm confident that you two will have a special relationship. He's wonderful, and I'm expecting you to be amazing, too, so it's inevitable. :) He has grand plans for your future violin lessons, and I'm sure you'll have him wrapped around your tiny fingers the day you're born. Daddy would like to be able to feel you kick, so whenever you can make that happen, we'd appreciate it.

Since our ultrasound last week when I saw you flex your legs at the same time I felt it, I've been confidently feeling all sorts of your movements. You like to be extra active after I drink orange juice or right before I try to sleep. However, you managed to sleep through your "big reveal" ultrasound even though I had a cherry limeade right before the appointment to try to get you to move. You were curled up in the fetal position with your legs crossed Indian-style and pulled up to your body, so we didn't get a good look at your face.

When I went to the doctor on Wednesday, they told me you look perfect and weigh about 10 oz, so you're growing right on track. You did not cooperate with the nurse who tried to measure your heartbeat. When she would find your heart, you would repeatedly dart to the other side of my belly and hide after 2-3 seconds of monitoring. Daddy says that means you're playful. I think you despise the noise of the Doppler and have a strong will. Either way, we love knowing details about you like that, and we're looking forward to meeting you.

I'm planning to take full advantage of being the one who grew you and gave birth to you to soak up lots of snuggles in a few months, and I'm so excited to read with you and watch you learn. I'm also excited to dress you up in precious little girl clothes, but I'm trying to focus more on how excited I am to develop the character of a bright, compassionate little woman of God. :)

We love you so much, sweet girl. Keep growing, and stay cozy in there for a while longer, and we'll see you in June (or late May, if you so desire).


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Our little one is a...

Little miss! We're so excited about our little lady, and her daddy is especially excited and announced last night that he's ready for her to be playing on the living room floor and he has grand plans for her future violin lessons. I'm looking forward to reading with her, eventually having precious conversations with her as her vocabulary expands, and learning her sense of humor.

Stay tuned for nursery plans, her official blog nickname, and pictures of the clothes our little girl may or may not have already acquired (mostly from her bargain-hunting momma).

Monday, January 13, 2014

Weeks 16-18

by Sylvia Plath

I'm a riddle in nine syllables.
An elephant, a ponderous house,
A melon strolling on two tendrils.
O red fruit, ivory, fine timbers!
This loaf's big with its yeasty rising.
Money's new-minted in this fat purse.
I'm a means, a stage, a cow in calf.
I've eaten a bag of green apples,
Boarded the train there's no getting off.

Super Belated Christmas Recap

We had a very merry Christmas and are having a great start to a happy new year!
Our Christmas mantle
Husband and I kicked off our Christmas-ing by exchanging gifts and stockings with each other on the Friday before Christmas. We also ate Christmas tacos, which are definitely a thing because I have now made them three or four years in a row. We exchange three gifts each, which Husband interprets loosely to mean that he can buy me as many things as he wants and then wrap them and tie them together with ribbon into "three" packages. I'm not complaining, but I follow the rules legalistically, so he only gets three gifts. We're hoping this new family tradition will help us keep Christmas in our immediate family (with a kiddo next year) simple and meaningful. And not break the bank because we also have lots of extended family members who we want to purchase/make gifts for. (Please ignore all the grammatical rules broken in the previous sentence.)
Our petite Christmas tree
On Saturday, we celebrated with Husband's immediate family, and we ate from a delicious baked potato bar and were blessed with several gifts that have already been put to use. Our niece and nephew make Christmas fun, and we got in lots of play time with them over the holidays, too.

After church on Sunday, we headed to my parents' house and hung out with them for a couple of days (including finishing some shopping and seeing my dad's parents) before heading to my sister's townhouse on Christmas Eve. Sister is a new ICU nurse, so she had to work Christmas Eve night, but we got to celebrate with her when she wasn't working or sleeping and with the rest of my mom's family on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
My family on Christmas Day
We drove home on the 26th and stopped by Husband's parents house to visit for a bit with his aunt, uncle, and grandma. All the driving was hard on my ever-more-pregnant self, but I'm glad we got to see so many family members, especially since our travel will look significantly different in the future.

Hope your new year is off to a wonderful start!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Why my child(ren)'s name(s) won't be appearing on the blog

If this little one cooperates, we should find out if he or she is a he or a she on January 13.  The appointment was for Wednesday, but the doctor's office called yesterday and needed to reschedule. I'm not so upset to cut a full two days off of our waiting. :)

I am beyond ready for that, especially now that Husband and I have settled on names. The boy's name was easily decided months ago, and it just feels right. The girl's name took quite a bit longer if for no other reason than Husband and I have different taste and we didn't love any of our original options. Girls' names are hard, but we finally have one that we both love.

Both names passed all the classic tests of "how would this sound as he walks across the stage at graduation?" and "are there any completely obvious ways that her name could be a teasing point?"

In addition, our last name is filled with potential jokes just waiting for people who think they are being clever and original to proclaim. Initials before the word "Flippin" are a key deciding factor, and Husband is great at coming up with all the potential downfalls of any combination, since he grew up with the last name and is surrounded by high schoolers daily.

So, that was a factor, and if our kid inherits my "I look like a twelve-year-old, even though I am of a perfectly legitimate age to be having a child"-ness, then he or she needs a dignified name to enter the workforce. Nothing too cutesy for this momma, but also nothing obviously passe that would make our infant bear the name of a person who should be of retirement age.

We also wanted to honor people in our lives who have made an impact on us and for our kid to have some heritage and tradition tied up in his or her moniker. All this to say, as soon as we know if our baby is a boy or a girl, the perfect name we have decided on will be in use, but not on the blog.

My name is attached to the blog, and I don't regret that, but I am mindful that the interwebs are not always a safe place, and anyone could read what I write. I want to be able to share pictures and stories about our kid, but I don't ever want to be afraid that a creeper is reading them and could then track us down, hence not giving our child's legal name or location.

I enjoy reading other people's blogs, especially young moms, and I hope and assume that either the people interested in reading this know me or they're genuinely interested in what I write but have no intention of ever stalking me (like I do for so many of the bloggers I follow).

To bring this long, drawn-out post to a close, I will be blogging about the baby, and I will be sharing about his or her life because it is irrevocably tangled up with mine, but I will call him or her by a blog-specific nickname, and I will be respectful of the fact that what I put on the Internet is out there forever. My kid doesn't have a voice yet, so I will be careful not to over-share or post anything that might someday shame my kid.

Phew, stay tuned for some lighter posts (with pictures) and the upcoming news of whether I'll be mothering a little boy or girl.

Third Letter to First Kid

December 21, 2013

Dear child of mine,

You’ve had a busy couple of months! I’ve heard your precious thundering heartbeat at two appointments now (170 the first time and then 140 earlier this week). I also got to see you jumping around on the screen last month, and your little head was the same size as your body, but you definitely had arms and legs that you were fervently waving around. I don’t think you liked the sound that the ultrasound machine introduced into your space. Your proportions have evened out by now, and I am more than ready to know if you are a he or she and feel your movements.

Your daddy is introducing you to all sorts of intelligent and musically genius sounds. Your first concert was to hear John Williams conduct the Houston Symphony Orchestra, with Yo Yo Ma playing a cello concerto. I’m sure you loved it and soaked up all the brilliance of the occasion. As I type, we are indoctrinating you with the Vienna Symphony Christmas album. Momma also plays plenty of popular not-so-musically-sound music for you in the car, so you will be well balanced.

You also attended a delicious Thanksgiving in Midland and saw your first and second movies in the theater (Catching Fire and Frozen, respectively). We announced your presence on facebook the day before Thanksgiving, so now even more people are praying for you and excited to meet you in June. Christmas is off to a great start because last night Daddy and I opened our presents to each other, and you were obviously on both of our minds while we shopped. :)

Momma has been super busy at work, but I’ve been trying to eat healthy foods and get plenty of water for you, and my stress has been kept in check by thinking about how much more important you are than any document I’m working on. I like to tell your daddy that “I’m carrying your child, so…” as an excuse for my increasing forgetfulness or request for him to be extra helpful, and he has been taking such good care of us.

Overall, we’re excited to feel you move, know if we should be buying pink or blue stuff for you, and tell the people in our world* your name next month. In the meantime, just keep growing and don’t be afraid to make your presence known.

Lots of love,

*Baby's name will not be used on the blog. Stay tuned for a lengthy explanation of why.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Second Letter to our First Kid

October 26, 2013

Dear child of mine,

We got to see you this week for the first time. Our first appointment was on my birthday, and hearing the doctor call you “perfect” was the best birthday present. You were 1.34 cm long, and your little heartbeat was timed just right.  Daddy filmed the ultrasound to show your grandparents and aunts, and we were both so happy that you were right on track. He also wanted to know when you would be able to hear (so that we can start indoctrinating you with classical music) and to confirm that there’s only one of you.

You’re still a secret from most people, but the hormones from growing a baby have made me a little sick, so it’s only a matter of time before some people guess that you exist. We’ve told your grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, and great-grandparents.  We told your grandparents about you first by giving them board books with notes that read “Please read this to me in early June. Love, Baby Flippin.”

Everyone is exited to meet you, and your aunt Caitlin keeps calling me to check how I’m feeling everyday. She’s being very attentive to my health now that you’re around. :)

Your daddy and I have started talking about names, but we haven’t decided for sure on a girl’s or boy’s name. You’re going to be a Flippin, which provides some extra challenges in picking solid, not-easily-made-fun-of first and middle names. We have some ideas, but it might be a while until we settle, which is fine because we have a few months before we know if you’re a boy or girl.

We get to see you again and hopefully hear your heartbeat in three weeks, so between now and then, keep growing, sweetheart. I pray for you daily that you’re healthy and growing, and you’ve already made me a bigger nervous wreck than anyone else, but you’ve also made me rely on God to keep you safe because even though you’re inside of me, there’s only so much I can do. I can only imagine how much harder it will be when you’re out in the world, but God is good, and He’ll help me keep it together.

Keep growing, baby. All my love,


Friday, January 3, 2014

First Letter to First Kid

Happy New Year! In honor of the first week of the year when we meet our first child, I'd like to share the first letter I wrote to the baby when we found out we were expecting. One of the reasons I like having a blog is having a way to share the exciting milestones of my life (and record my in-the-moment thoughts for my future forgetful self.) I'm forgetful now, so I know as my memories continue to exponentially increase, I will begin to forget more and more of them.

It seems amazing to me how quickly the first (almost) half of this pregnancy has gone, and I'm trying to treasure the time spent growing this baby and preparing for him or her to irrevocably change my life. Without further ado, my early pregnancy ramblings to the tiny life inside me.

September 28, 2013

Dear child of mine,

We found out you were growing inside of me today. I think I did a double take at the pregnancy test because I have peed on quite a few of those sticks, and they’ve always been negative before. You are so wanted and loved already. I’m not sure that there are words adequate to describe how joyful I am right now that you’re going to be part of our family.

I’m not sure if it’s fully sunk in that I’m really pregnant-that God is knitting together a baby inside me-yet. You’re an actively pursued dream come true, and we are so excited!

I’m so excited to meet you, but please for now just settle in and make yourself safe and comfortable inside me for the next several months. We’re hoping to meet you sometime around our fourth wedding anniversary. How cool is that? You have been prayed over and loved and daydreamed about since I fell in love with your daddy, and I have wanted to be a mom since I was a little girl. Honestly, my picture of who you are has changed through the years, but the love and the prayers have just kept multiplying.

I don’t know much about you yet since I only found out that you exist this morning, but I have a few very important things that I want you to know. I will always love you. I’m not perfect, but I’m saved by the grace of Jesus, and your daddy and I are going to figure this parenthood thing out while relying on His mercy. You have a heavenly and an earthly father who both love you more than you can imagine.

Nestle in, baby. All my love,

Your momma