Mama time

Between the second car and new medication, I am a much happier, more relaxed mama. I estimate that I have roughly 7 more hours each week during which I can enjoy our little dude, tackle projects around the home, actually cook dinner for our family, and even tap into hobbies and interests I enjoyed before E arrived on the scene.

Today, K, E and I went to a Mom 2 Mom sale, where we acquired some clothes in the next couple of sizes from what E is currently wearing, as well as a few toys. He’s so much more active these days – whew! – and needs more stimulating and interactive toys. We know that he truly enjoys music, so this is one of the toys we picked up (sweet – only $2!):

E's new toy

In addition to cooking more dinners for K and I, we’ve begun introducing solids to E. I’m really enjoying preparing wholesome, tasty food for E. We’re attempting more of a baby-led weaning approach, where E has more empowerment over his food experience, though we are introducing solids in a slow, choosy way because K has a family history of food allergies. We are also doing more purees for now because E can’t yet sit up – he’s so close – and there’s more of a choking hazard if a little one can’t sit up and spit out whatever might be in his/her mouth. So far, E has enjoyed applesauce and bananas. His two favorites were ginger-spiced, roasted carrots, which he kept cramming in his mouth while making “come to papa” eyes, and quinoa risotto, which made him squeal in a voice I’ve never heard before or since. Here are a few photos for your enjoyment:

carrots2

carrots1

carrots3

carrots4

This afternoon, K took E to visit his parents and gave me the gift of some mama time. I spent part of it attempting to make a wool diaper cover from a sweater I acquired at a local resale shop. It was my first try and I believe it’ll be too small. I’ve decided not to be upset about it, though, because it inspired me to get my sewing machine out of storage for the first time in months, gave me a chance to get reacquainted with it, and helped me to better understand how to make a wool diaper cover when I get the time to try again.

How do you spend the little bit of down time you have? If you don’t currently have any down time, what do you daydream about doing during down time you will hopefully one day have?

The Long-Awaited Nursery Reveal

It’s official: the nursery is now mostly complete. I say “mostly” because we are still waiting on the crib skirt to arrive and, because we recently ordered it as a part of our massive Amazon nursery completion order, it likely won’t be here until after our Little arrives. K is trying to convince me that Falco won’t mind.

The nursery is yellow and grey with chevron details. We opted to paint the nursery a cheery but not juvenile looking yellow (Sherwin-Williams Harmony low-VOC Acrylic Latex paint in Lantern Light Eg-Shel). We did this for several reasons:

  • Grey paint is notoriously difficult, as it typically reads as either blue or mauve, depending on the undertones and light in the room.
  • We wanted the paint to be able to easily transition as Falco gets older.
  • We wanted the paint to read as neutral, since we’re renting and didn’t bother to ask our rental agency if we could paint the room (yep, we’re total rebels).

IMG_1570

Crib: babyletto Hudson 3 in 1 in grey, purchased via Zulily for a $60 reduced price. Woot!
Rug: Mohawk Yellow Ziggidy, again purchased via Zulily.
Baby quilt: Designed and constructed by an amazing friend.

mobile, crib and picture

Fitted crib skirt: Sewn by me using a free online pattern with Keepsake Calico Gray & Yellow fabric.
Mobile: Designed and constructed by me
, using various fat quarters, polyfill, ribbon and a yellow yarn-wrapped embroidery hoop. It was inspired by my favorite song I sang as a child (and can’t wait to sing to Falco), “You Are My Sunshine.”
Print: Purchased and framed by K’s Aunt K (the one who hosted our family shower), designed by Ellen Crimi-Trent. K’s Aunt saw that I had posted a similar print to Facebook with the intent of creating a craft that was inspired by it, tracked down the artist, and placed the order via her Etsy store.

IMG_1582edit

Shelves: IKEA EKBY TONY/EKBY BJÄRNUM (previously purchased, used at my former job and repurposed).
Piggy banks: The Sponge Bob one was gifted to us by my mother at our family shower. It belonged to my late grandmother, who used it for her Bingo winnings, which are also enclosed. The other one was hand painted by me during a holiday outing with my coworkers. One side says, “[Falco’s] 1st Car Fund.”
Sign: Designed and framed by a friend. It says, “E is for… [Falco’s intended name, masked for privacy/anonymity.]”
Bunny lovey: Gifted to us by K’s cousin at our family shower. It matches an adorable stroller blanket.

IMG_1562

Dresser: IKEA HEMNES 8-drawer dresser, purchased by K’s parents as a Christmas gift.
Changing pad cover: Aden + Anais 100% Cotton Muslin in Safari Friends Giraffe.
Afghan: Handcrafted by my mom and gifted to us at our family shower.
Garbage can turned diaper pail: iTouchless Deodorizer 13 Gallon Stainless Steel Automatic Touchless Trash Can with Carbon Filter. There’s also a yellow wetbag inside.

IMG_1561edit

Vintage diaper pin decor: Ballard Designs, gifted to us by my parents as a nod to our intention to cloth diaper.

new cat bed slash changing pad

Kis thinks this changing pad is a kitty bed. Can’t say I blame him.

IMG_1576

Floor lamp: Nickel-plated IKEA ALÄNG. We also purchased a matching table lamp for later use when Falco is in a big kid bed and has nightstand that we also purchased.

IMG_1563

Rocking chair and matching ottoman (previously shown): IKEA POÄNG, birch veneer with Lockarp gray cover, purchased for as a Christmas gift from my parents.
Bookshelf turned “diaper tower”: IKEA HEMNES in white. Shown is only a small portion of our cloth diaper stash, just enough for Falco’s smaller sizes.
Throw blanket: Frost chevron gray by THRO, purchased via Zulily.
Diaper bag: JJ Cole Mode in Mixed Leaf, purchased by a family friend.
Toy bin: Purchased by K’s mom and filled with an assortment of toys we purchased and acquired as gifts.
Philly LOVE ornament: Purchased for us by a dear friend.
Vintage rolling curtain: Came with our glamorous home rental.

elephants from Grandmas

Elephant plushies: Purchased, separately and independently, by each Grandma-to-be.
Baby book: Purchased by K at a local boutique.

prints

Prints: Designed by a dear friend (the same one who designed, “E is for…”).

What do you think? I’m pretty excited about it and can’t wait for our Little to join us!

Note: the following post, Our Birth Plan, is password protected as some of our future posts might be. We would love to continue sharing details with our treasured followers, so please request a password by emailing us at thefalcoproject (at) gmail (dot) com. Thanks!

75% Cooked

As of this week, K is 30 weeks pregnant and we officially have about 10 weeks left to go. It amazes me when I think of how far we’ve come. At this point, I feel like the majority of our large preparations have already occurred.

Our choice of cribs kept being reduced in price at every vendor we visited, but because we thought one of our family members, or even a group, might consider purchasing it from our registry, we kept putting it off… until it was even more greatly reduced on Zulily. We took it as a sign and snatched it right up! The crib arrived on Friday and I assembled it late last night while K and the dogs slumbered together on the couch. My parents purchased the crib mattress from our registry, and it should arrive next week. I can’t wait to post photos of the nursery, which should be completed soon!

The invitations to our family shower are officially in the mail, albeit wayyyyyy later than what makes me feel comfortable (or, notably, than what is considered polite to guests), but hey, I’m not planning it. My teammates at work indicated their desire to throw me a work shower, so now I am attending a total of four baby showers in seven days:

  • 3/10 – our friends shower
  • 3/15 – my work shower
  • 3/16 – our family shower
  • 3/17 – attending the shower of some friends
  • 3/18 – taking a random day off work to recuperate from the whirlwind

It has taken forever and a day, but Lowe’s is delivering the new washing machine today. I’m really thankful for this fact, as hauling a week’s worth of laundry to a laundromat is getting exhausting. I intentionally did it alone this week, too, because K’s getting more tired now that our little Falco is getting larger and putting a lot more pressure on K’s back. I have to wait until at least Monday for the rental agency to send someone to actually install it (NO clue why Lowe’s doesn’t install it), but the end is in sight!

So many things on the horizon: the showers, another OB appointment, a meeting with the doula, and further Falco preparations. I am looking forward to documenting it all for you all!

Please help me convince him

K starts practically every workday in a very grumpy mood, dissatisfied with his clothing options because few tops fit and is yet completely hesitant to buy anything new. He says that he feels really guilty about spending our money on things he won’t wear forever. I’ve tried everything I can think of to help alleviate this unnecessary guilt and stress, including but not limited to:

  • Humor – “The alternative would be to go to work naked or risk your Falco bump busting out in the middle of a staff meeting.”
  • Logic – “Bean [yes, I call him “bean”], we always knew this day was coming. It is a valid pregnancy-related expense.”
  • Excitement about becoming a parent – “The fact that your belly is growing is a good thing! It means that Falco is growing strong and that we’ll soon meet her/him. Now, in the meantime, let’s find some items to cover him/her.”
  • Tactful honesty – “I’m thinking that might need to be the last week you wear that particular shirt. Why don’t we go buy a few things this weekend?”
  • Empowerment – “Everyone deserves to have clothes that fit and make them feel put together.”
  • Just buying stuff without his input.

I’m not sure what else I can do! I love this man more than words can express and the fact that he feels bad about taking care of himself in this way really tears me up. Do any of you, dear readers, have ideas about how I can help K move beyond this point and get him some damn clothes that fit? For those of you who are, or who have been, pregnant, did you feel any of this guilt? Any insight you could provide would be greatly appreciated!

What’s in YOUR pants?

If it’s an intactivist information card, then you have something in common with K.

Today, upon putting on a new pair of khaki manternity pants that we recently purchased from Target, he discovered an informational card about circumcision for parents-to-be. It’s from a website called Saving Our Sons and looks like the following:

intactivist card front

intactivist card back

When K first pulled it out of his pocket, he thought it was some creepy religious thing or right-to-life message. Luckily, this card doesn’t say anything that’s outside what we would pursue if we happen to be having a boy, either now or in the future. We both thought it was a clever method to spread the word to an appropriate audience (though we doubt the person who left the card would ever think the message would end up in the pants of a pregnant dad-to-be!).

So true!

Considering someone recently located our blog by searching “what to get for a baby shower if they don’t know the gender,” I figured the following could be useful:

for boy or girl

Feel free to substitute the words “item” or “present” for “toy,” and the person who searched for gender-neutral baby gift ideas should be in luck! I wish I could cite the original source for the brilliance of this graphic, but I would like to thank my friend who sent this my way.

Gratitude, week 14

What a rollercoaster of a week! I received some great news, then some terrible news that turned out just fine. Before I put the cart before the horse, I should get to the point of this post. During this fourteenth week of our pregnancy, I’m thankful for:

  • Learning that our ginger kitty is going to be okay! Earlier this week, K took him to the vet because we thought he had a UTI. The vet discovered that his bladder was blocked and needed to cathederize him. After draining his bladder, the vet discovered what he believed was an inoperable bladder and/or colon tumor, which he believed was causing the initial health concern. The vet couldn’t get his X-ray machine to work in order to confirm the tumor. Once the machine started working again, he discovered, much to our great relief, that the kitty didn’t have a tumor after all. He was just severely constipated, which has been an ongoing issue. I was so happy to hear this news that I cried!
  • We had another lovely low-key weekend that allowed us the opportunity to tackle some of the longstanding to-do’s on our Falco list. K and I went to our local IKEA store to look at and confirm some of the nursery furniture items we’ve been considering for a while. He also called a painter that his mother recommended and scheduled him to come out for a quote tomorrow evening. Today, I spent about two hours sewing a fitted crib sheet for Falco. Kitty assisted me in this endeavor:

    Kitty loves to help me with crafts!

  • Fluff mail! I squealed like a kid at Christmastime when our postal carrier delivered two cloth diaper related package yesterday afternoon. Included in the bounty was two dozen seconds of Green Mountain Diapers unbleached prefolds, five Sunbabies pocket diapers that were customized with hip snaps, and five bamboo blend inserts. Lately, K has been searching the internet for cloth diaper related obsessive disorders because I’ve been spending so much of my time researching them and shopping for deals with co-op groups. It’s been a blast for me, though, and I think actually seeing some of this cuteness arrive in the mail put K’s mind at ease.

I’m still hopeful that K will have time to post about coming out to his bosses at work, which happened last week, and about meeting with his aunt on Tuesday. So many exciting things on the horizon, friends!

Bargainista Mommy-to-Be, an update

As you may remember, I adore saving money. For me, being thrifty where I can is an essential part of my values that allows me to be able to spend the difference where I want or where saving isn’t always possible.

We’ve been stocking up on needs for Falco by going to thrift stores, perusing Craigslist ads and the BabyCenter Cloth Diaper Swap (approval needed to join), buying on sale/clearance, and going to Mom-to-Mom sales. After coming home from a Mom-to-Mom sale last weekend, I spent some time organizing and taking an informal inventory of our Falco supplies thus far, which will help inform future shopping needs. Below is what we have so far. Please note that Falco’s signature colors are clearly yellow and green.

Clothing and accessories (spent approx. $150 total):

Clothing, zero to six months0-3 months:

  • 6 sleep outfits, including 1 sleep sack, 2 swaddle sacks, and 3 sleep-to-play outfits
  • 9 onesies/all-in-one outfits
  • 1 adorable owl hoodie
  • 4 pants
  • 1 shirt/short outfit
  • 3 hats
  • 15 pairs of socks

3-6 months:

  • 3 sleep outfits, including 1 sleep sack and 2 sleep-to-play outfits
  • 19 onesies/all-in-one outfits
  • 5 pants
  • 1 sweater
  • 1 sweater outfit
  • 1 hat
  • 12 pairs of socks

Clothes, six to eighteen months6-12 months:

  • 1 sleep sack
  • 5 onesies/all-in-one outfits
  • 1 pant
  • 18 pairs of socks

12-18 months:

  • 1 sleep sack
  • 4 onesies/all-in-one outfits
  • 3 shirts
  • 1 neon yellow tutu

Cloth Diapers (spent approx. $150 total):

  • 10 Thirsties Duo Wraps (snap), size one (6-18 lbs)
  • 1 Thirsties Duo Wrap (snap), size two (18-40 lbs)
  • 2 Kawaii Baby pockets, one size (8-36 lbs)
  • 1 Fuzzibunz pocket, one size (7-18 lbs)
  • 20 Osocozy unbleached prefolds, infant (6-16 lbs)
  • 12 Dandelion Diapers organic cotton blend prefolds, size two (7-15 lbs)
  • 6 misc. brand bamboo pocket inserts
  • 1 misc. no-brand pocket

Shopping list:

  • Pants
  • All clothing, sizes 6+ months
  • A few Snappis
  • 12 small prefolds
  • 18+ snap AIO’s and/or pockets (I’ll go with new Alva pockets through a co-op if I can’t find good quality used)
  • 24+ larger prefolds
  • 12+ Thirsties Duos, size 2
  • Pack-and-play
  • Tummy tub
  • Space saver high chair
  • InGenuity Cozy Coo Sway Seat