Monday, November 19, 2012

We weren't planning a home birth...


... and we didn't anticipate our sweet baby girl being born in our garage (yes, you read that right!), but that's exactly what happened this past Friday night!

We were planning a hospital birth and knew that the baby would probably come quickly since I was only in labor with Master W. for a short 3 hours, but we had no idea just how quickly she would actually arrive! I felt my first contraction sometime around 11:25 p.m. on Friday night so we immediately called Hubby's folks to come watch the kids so we could go to the hospital.

Within minutes we were dressed and walking through the house to the garage, figuring we'd wait in the car until his folks arrived (they live five minutes away so the wait wouldn't be long). But by the time we were in the garage and Hubby had pulled the car out to make it easier for me to get in, I was feeling the need to push and I knew we wouldn’t make it in time. So we called 911 and the operator coached Hubby through the delivery. His parents arrived just in time to lend a hand and watch him catch the baby (yes, on the floor of the garage... Hubby's dad quickly gathered up and put down towels and blankets before she arrived), and the paramedics arrived just a few minutes after that. They whisked us off to the nearest hospital in the ambulance and the rest is history!

I hope you enjoyed our dramatic baby story! I've never met anyone else whose labor and delivery took less than 30 minutes total. It's pretty surreal.

Normally I don't post photos of my babies' faces, but I couldn't resist one little newborn shot taken just before we were released from the hospital to go home.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

No baby yet, but two unexpected arrivals

My due date came and went yesterday without the arrival of our much anticipated little one. Miss C. and Master W. were both late babies, so I'm not at all surprised that I'm still at home running around in a sort of crazed nesting mode. I've been cleaning the house like crazy, doing laundry, changing sheets and even managed to sew up a quilt top in the last few days.

Waiting for baby is not torturous for me (I can't say the same for my sweet hubby, though. The wait is killing him!). I am content to wait until the baby is ready. And even though my due date didn't bring me my baby, I did unexpectedly receive wonderful gifts from two very dear friends of mine.

The first gift was a surprise package in my mailbox. My dear friend, Robyn, whom I met through her blog sent me the most wonderful children's book. 'One Special Day' is a book about a little boy named Spencer who is a wild and carefree kind of kid. The author and illustrator do a masterful job describing Spencer: he is loud, he is wild, he is funny. And one day, something changes and he is something new: he is a big brother... and he is gentle.

Oh, how I cried when I read this book. I cried because little Spencer reminds me so much of Master W. I cried because my two sweeties are about to meet their new baby brother or sister and our whole world is about to change for the better once again. And I cried because I was overwhelmed by the perfection of this book, and the fact that it was so carefully selected just for me by my very thoughtful and sweet friend.

The second gift came later in the evening when my best friend's husband dropped by (we live about three hours apart and he was in town unexpectedly to visit his father who is ill, so he couldn't stay long to visit) with a beautiful hospital gown and matching pillowcase that my wonderful best girlfriend had sewn for me this week.

I was so touched yet again by the thoughtfulness of this gift. My sweet friend, who is dealing with many friends and family members who are seriously ill right now, took time to make something to make my impending hospital stay more comfortable. She is selfless and thoughtful to the core; I love her dearly and cherish our nearly 25-year-old friendship.

Of course, what post would be complete without a little sewing talk, right? If you look closely at the first photo you'll catch a glimpse of the quilt top I finished today. I finally decided what to do with all of those postage stamp blocks I've been sewing up this past year. As it turns out, there were exactly enough blocks for two lap-sized quilts (60x72").

I'll be working on both quilts as time permits after the baby comes. This first top came together in just a few days and is for my hubby's best friend and his two little girls (ages 2 and 4.5), who are going through a tough time right now. I thought perhaps they – and the girls in particular – could use something cozy for reading, movies or just spending time together. The second top will be for my own family and I can't wait to cozy up underneath it after it's finished.

I'm sure it's going to take me a long time to get around to finishing them, but I've made a good head start!


Friday, November 9, 2012

Halfway through the hustle.

If you're following along The 100 Day Hustle over at Kelsey Sews, then you know that today marks the halfway point.

I've been putting all those third trimester nesting hormones to good use these past few weeks and have somehow managed to finish nearly everything on my list, even after adding a few extra projects (I started with just five on my list)!

Here's a look at where I stand:

Finish my brother's wedding quilt Done!
Halloween costumes for the kids (Peter Pan for Miss C. and maybe Lightning McQueen for Master W.) Done!

Christmas stocking for the baby - In progress

Christmas gift for Miss C.'s teacher Done!

Finish the remaining green blocks for my postage stamp quilt Done!

Angel costume for Miss C.'s school Christmas pageant Done!

Gift for Miss C.'s sixth grade buddy Done!

Covered journals for Christmas gifts for friend's children Done!


I'm set to hit 40 weeks on Tuesday and my babies have traditionally been late, so we'll see if I decide to squeeze in any new projects before the baby arrives. I'm definitely feeling tired by the time I put the kids to bed these days, so I'm thinking my last project – the baby's stocking – may end up a last minute finish. 

I hope you're getting a jump on your project list, too! Are you flying through it or is it too big and scary to even think about tackling?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Blessings.

This past week I've spent a lot of time reflecting on blessings. I have so many. Too many to count, really. And I'm so grateful to all that God has provided for me: a wonderful husband, beautiful children, good health, a home to live in and plenty of food to eat... and so much more.

I have a bloggy friend whom I've never met who also has many blessings. God has blessed her with deep faith, a beautiful family, the ability to home school her kids, a wonderful husband and an incredible network of people who love and support her. 

But she and her family are also facing some challenges right now. They've been unable to sell their home. Her husband has had trouble finding work after they sold their business so their finances are tight. And she had surgery today to fix a not-so-tiny hole in her heart. 

After reading some of her recent posts – and one in particular where she let it slip that her children's Christmas is going to be a small one this year – I felt a little whisper in my heart. Maybe I could share one of my blessings with this wonderful person. True, our only correspondence has been through the comments section of her blog... but does that matter?

No.

I thought about something small I could make for each of her kids using my stash, since our budget is tight and the baby is due to arrive any time now. And then I remembered that they do a lot of journaling as part of their home school curriculum... a covered journal for each of her sweeties seemed perfect.

I floated the idea to her in a comment on one of her posts and she was so sweet in her response. She said she would love them and that she'd contact me soon. Well, a few days passed and my pregnancy-induced insanity must have gone into overdrive because by this Friday night I had four patchwork journal covers (using Rachel's awesome tutorial) finished and ready to go.

I emailed her this weekend for her address and she was so sweet, admitting that she'd been going back and forth in her mind about contacting me because she'd rather be the giver than the receiver. This was my response:
"I’m glad that I made them then! :) 
I’m sure you’ll have many opportunities in the years to come to be on the giving end of things. For now, it’s okay to be on the receiving end of things. There is Grace and goodness in being able to say “yes” when you need help the most. God provides us with many blessings throughout our lives. Right now, you are blessed with many people who want to help you and I am blessed with the ability to help. Sometime soon, I know, you’ll be back to fighting form and God will once again bless you with the ability to help someone else."
I'm not sharing this story today because I want any kind of recognition. I'm sharing it because I hope to inspire perhaps just one other person to share their blessings in an act of friendship. There are always people we know personally, or through the blogs we read, or even complete strangers who might need a little help this Thanksgiving, Christmas or any time of year.

I am a Catholic. And that voice I heard whispering to me? I'm certain it was God answering my prayers and questions and reflections. I'm equally certain that no matter what your belief system may be, we all have blessings and gifts that we can use to help someone else in the smallest of ways. If each of us helped just one other person or family this holiday season, think of the good we could do together.

You can find this post linked up at:

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Cross another one off the list.

Every year the Kindergartners at Miss C.'s school are the angels in the Christmas pageant. A few weeks ago, her teacher put out a call for more angel costumes, as they're short a few for our little angels to wear.

There must be something about the third trimester that makes a pregnant woman lose her mind, because I volunteered to make a costume for Miss C. Sure, I had a spare white sheet laying around... but did I really have the time with only a few weeks left before the baby arrives?

I guess I did.
It's not fancy, and I needed my mom's help with hem placement and pattern adjustment... but it's finished! Miss C.'s teacher thought she had a pattern for us to use, but as it turns out it's an adult-sized pattern. Who knows how much extra work the last costume maker had to put in to adjust that thing down to pint size. I picked up a child-sized pattern for a dollar at JoAnn's and gave it to her teacher to keep for the future.

Of course, in my rush to get it to the school before the baby arrives (less is more when carrying a newborn and corralling a crazy toddler at school), I forgot to take a photo at home. So, I slipped my camera in my purse on the way out the door and took a quick photo in the car just before school started. Classy, right?

Here's a look at my adjusted (yet again) 100 Day Hustle list:
  1. Finish my brother's wedding quilt Done!
  2. Halloween costumes for the kids (Peter Pan for Miss C. and maybe Lightning McQueen for Master W.) Done!
  3. Christmas stocking for the baby - In progress
  4. Christmas gift for Miss C.'s teacher Done!
  5. Finish the remaining green blocks for my postage stamp quilt Done!
  6. Angel costume for Miss C.'s school Christmas pageant Done!
  7. Gift for Miss C.'s sixth grade buddy Done!
  8. Covered journals for Christmas gifts for ill friend's children Done! Post to come soon.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Meet Peter Pan and Lightning McQueen.

Halloween was a huge success at our house this year. How did it go for you?

This year, Miss C. wanted to be Peter Pan. I had originally planned to make a Peter Pan costume for her, but as luck would have it my mom found a fancy Disneyland costume (complete with shoe covers, hat, belt and shirt) for just $4 at the thrift store the very afternoon that she and I spoke about the kids' costume choices. (I call my mom "The Thrift Store Whisperer" – she can find most anything there, including vintage items worth five to ten times more than she pays for them!) We picked up an inexpensive pair of leggings and a red feather for the hat, and Miss C. was ready to go.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Master W.'s costume took a little more time to put together. The end result was so worth it, though. He had a blast running around in his "NaQueen" costume last night and can't wait to play with it again and again.

I hope you and your families enjoyed a safe Halloween this year!

You can find this post linked up at: