Thursday, May 29, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend

We had a very busy and productive long weekend here at the Smith House. Jeff and I often joke that our never ending to-do list will clog up all of our weekends until we are in our 60's and to old to have home projects! HA! Jeff took the day off on Friday, which was Anderson's last day of Mom's Morning Out for two more weeks when the summer term starts. I told Jeff if he really wanted to knock it out and get stuff done that was our last chance without a two year old in tow. He took my advice to heart and worked all day, along with me, on the nursery and Anderson's big boy room.

We purchased Anderson's furniture several weeks ago after much research and debating on my part. Call it it type A...whatever...I was so stressed and overwhelmed with all of the options for furniture, decor, and bedding. I finally decided on a zoo/safari type theme for his room because he LOVES animals. I think we have a future zoo-ologist on our hands!I didn't want the theme to be over the top, but I did want his room to be uniquely his and suited to his interests. I hope he will lay in bed many a night mesmerized by all of the animals in his room! As for the furniture we chose a twin bed due to the smaller size of the room. However, I was able to find the perfect bed with a pull out trundle and two drawers for storage in the base. I think this will give us options for when we start having spend the night company in a few years.

I also handmade a lot of the items in his room. I couldn't find a lot of safari stuff in lighter brighter colors, so I just made a lot of it myself. The canvases above his bed are in poster frames and literally nail gunned (thanks Jeff!) to the wall so that he can't really mess with them. The letters above his headboard are also nailed in. What can I say...we know our son...and we know that if they were simply hung it would be a disaster! I also made a photo collage on one wall after seeing a website that sold them for $150.00....I was way! I can soooo do that myself. It is finished all except for the blank space in the middle where I'll be putting a Dr. Suess quote. I think it turned out quite well and very much less than $150.00!

I still have to get a bamboo blind and a navy valance for the window, but other than that we are done! Now on to the nursery!! He will begin sleeping in it in a couple of weeks after our beach trip. I am sure the transistion to a big boy bed will be a blog worthy adventure, so stay tuned!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Such a cool thing....

Ok, so for those of you out there in cyber world with me that love to read blogs of friends...and the occasional stranger...I have found the coolest website. It's called bloglines and it allows you to set up a list of feeds of all the blogs that you like to read regularly. Then it keeps up with them for you and lets you know when there is a new post on one of the blogs you keep up with. This way you avoid clicking on numerous blogs all of the time checking for updated posts. You just go to the blogline website and check it like tells you how many new posts each blog has had since you last checked. This will certainly help with my computer addiction...or at least make it more time efficient! HA!

Try it's totally free and takes two seconds to sign up for.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

4-D Ultrasound

We had our 4-D ultrasound this morning.Jeff and I were both very excited about the prospect of seeing what our little angel actually looks like! When we did this with Anderson we got some great pictures. We got some good ones this time around too but she was much more stubborn! Her head was firmly nestled against the placenta and that didn't leave for a lot of fluid around her face to get really good shots, but nonetheless we were definitely able to see her and she is healthy and still a girl! In a couple of the shots she is quite the Miss Priss HA! In the one at the very top of this post she has one hand pulled up to the side of her face and her chin is gently resting on the top of her other hand. In another shot she has her little legs crossed at the ankle...quite the little lady already!

We made the grave mistake of taking Anderson with us. I hate nothing more than going to an OB's office and watching some crazy mom chase around her small children her are inevitably loud, cranky and completely out of control. I have NEVER brought Anderson to an appointment, but in an effort to get him excited about his baby sister we thought we'd try it just this once. After all, he can actually tell it is a baby in a 4-d picture and it would be on a TV screen...A TV is a big deal around this house, so we thought he'd love it...WRONG! He went from perfect angel status to compete terror the moment we stepped into the office. The nurses kept saying he's fine, but he didn't want to be held and had zero interest in watching his baby sister on the monitor. It made for a bit of a stressful appointment for Jeff and me because we couldn't really concentrate on her which was disheartening, but also probably a good reminder of our new reality...two kids! There isn't as much time to concentrate on every "special" little thing with the second one when you are...oh, I don't know... just trying to keep the first one from messing with the buttons on the million dollar sonogram machine!

At any rate, she is perfectly healthy and snuggled up in my belly. I start going for appointments every two weeks now, which scares me to death because that means we are getting close, and I feel like there is still so much to do to prepare for her arrival! 10 weeks and counting!! We are making great progress in the nursery and Anderson's new room! I will put up pics when we are done! Flexing her foot!

Side by side...the ones in black and white are Anderson and the ones with the reddish/orange tint are Lydia. I think at least their little noses are the same! Their mouths seem to be a different shape though...what do you think?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Zippity Doo Dah...

This past weekend we loaded up the monkey and headed to Birmingham to visit with my family. Last weekend was also my Mother's birthday in addition to Mother's Day...but my poor mom had to move last weekend. This is the second year in a row she and Mike have moved on Mother's Day/her birthday weekend. My step-dad is a contractor and builds beautiful custom homes that they move into and somehow inevitably have either a realtor or private party inquire about buying. When there is a profit to be made they will sell the house and build the next one. They have moved 5 times in the last 6 or 7 years. One time the buyers even bought all of the furniture...I'm talking ALL...the bedroom sets, pictures on the wall, decorative frames and nicknacks, draperies, the rugs in the rooms...everything! Isn't that hilarious!! Mom was stoked because she got to pick out all new stuff! Anyway, they have sold their most recent house and moved into a rental until the new house is August. Yeah, cause we don't have anything going on in August! HA! Mom told Mike that she isn't moving until Sept. 1st so that she can help with the baby...needless to say I am very grateful for that!

So all of that to say we postponed our celebratory "mom" weekend until after their move! It really ended up working out perfectly because last weekend was Doo Dah Day, which is quite possibly my mother's favorite event besides maybe Christmas! Doo Dah day is held in two of the Southside area parks to raise money for the humane society. They have two stages with various bands, lots of food and drink vendors and best of all everyone brings their animals. It's mostly dogs, but we did see a snake, goat, parrot and pig this year! Anderson loved looking at all of the animals. As you can see he is wearing a harness/backpack. I swore that I would never put my child on a "leash", but he has been so bad about bolting off from us lately that it was the only way I felt comfortable taking him to such a crowded area. We took our dog, Atticus and met my Mom, Mike, their two dogs, my step-brother Todd and his wife Susan.My sister Marcie was even able to come down from Nashville and we got to meet her new boyfriend, Justin. We all hung out at the park, watched the pet parade and took in several of the bands while enjoying a gorgeous day outside!

That night we headed back to mom and Mike's house for a cook out for Mom's birthday. She opened her gifts and was so excited to get the book I created for her from Shutterfly. It was filled with pics of her and Anderson all in chronological order from the the last two years. The captions were from his point of view and pointed out what a great Gigi she is. Seriously...check out the look on her face when she opened it...priceless! The weather was so nice that evening that we even got to eat outside. We chatted and laughed until it was time for this preggo momma to hit the hay!

Sunday mom kept Anderson for a few hours while Jeff and I ran to Babies r Us to pick up a few things we still needed for Lydia. We had a great afternoon of being together just the two of us and preparing for our new baby without distraction. Then we went back to get the monkey and headed home. Now I need a weekend to recover from my weekend!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Pregnancy update...

I had a spare second and thought I would give a little update on Lydia's progress. We are now in the third trimester and I am torn between counting down the days and wanting it to last longer because I don't feel ready!! At this point in my first pregnancy I was on bed rest due to pre-term contractions that they were having a hard time just the fact that I am still hanging in there with no major complications is a real blessing. Looking back on Anderson's birth is a little surreal to Jeff and me. We were so clueless to how badly all of that could have turned out. Now that we've had a baby and are a little more aware- ignorance is no longer bliss! It just seems so much more real and scary, so we are very thankful that this time around has been pretty uneventful!

I am having to go to physical therapy twice a week because Lydia shifted onto my sciatic nerve and it got to the point where when my back "caught" it would take my breath away and many times I wasn't able to move for a few seconds. A few times I had some minor contractions afterwards, so our Dr. sent me to PT for the rest of the pregnancy. At first I was mad and not wanting to go. Anderson only has school 3 mornings a week and now two of them I spend at PT...doesn't leave me much time to get anything else done. However, it has made such a difference in the way I feel that I now consider it worth it!! Besides it is mostly a heating pad and electrodes and a 20 minute lower back massage. It feels like heaven! Needless to say- I have made my peace with "having" to go now! Ha!

We have a little over 11 weeks left until this baby arrives, but I think because Anderson was so early I really am not counting on anything after 4th of July. She will probably go full term without incident, but for some reason I just want everything done pronto! I am truly driving my poor husband crazy! Anderson's big boy furniture is being delivered Tuesday and after that I can begin transferring all of his clothes and things to his new room and start washing Lydia's new items and putting them away in the nursery. The seamstress has all of the fabric for the nursery and is working on the bedding, curtain and side table cloth. I can't wait to see it all finished. It is all Lilac and white toiles and silks. She thinks she will have it done by mid June, so everything is coming together...I just need to be more patient!

Our next Dr. appointment is a week from today and it is our 4-d ultrasound. We can not wait!! Having that done with Anderson was the most incredible experience. We felt like we really knew him after seeing so many little details about his face. When he was born he looked exactly like the ultrasound picture to a T! We can't wait to see what our daughter looks like. We are taking Anderson to the appointment too. We've really been talking up the big brother role to help prepare him. He has 3 books on the subject and Jeff even bought him a small baby doll to play with. We have been working with him on holding it gently and giving it kisses, etc. Hopefully he will embrace his new role!

Ok, so that just about catches you up on Lady Lydia...we'll be sure to post her pictures next week, so check back in!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

Yesterday was a great Mother's Day! We spent our morning at church and then headed out to Newk's for a yummy lunch! Jeff and Anderson both got me a card and the movie Juno, which I have been wanting to see for a while now. I told Jeff not to get me anything since we have spent so much money in the last month or two (landscaping, furniture for Anderson's new room and bedding for Lydia) and he broke the rule...but at least it was just a movie!

Yesterday afternoon, with Jeff's cooperation, I treated myself to an afternoon full of my favorite activity...sitting at Barnes and Noble for a full, blissfully quiet and uninterrupted 2 hours. I browsed books, read a magazine and read the WHOLE one sitting! That is quite the accomplishment for the mother of a two year old! HA! I wanted to pick up some great new fiction title, but I think I was paralyzed with the fear that the book I picked wouldn't be good. I was an avid reader at one point in my life, but lately all I've read are parenting/ pregnancy/ toddler discipline books. I am determined to read at least one good book before the baby arrives. However, if I am going to devote what little free time I have to reading it I want it to be great!! If you have read a good one lately comment and let me know. I am looking for suggestions. I loved Life of Pi, anything by Cassandra King, The Kiterunner and The Secret Life of Bees

When I got home, we did our normal late Sunday afternoon thing and took Anderson for a ride around the neighborhood on the golf cart. We got my friend Beth a little flower and took it to her for her first Mother's Day. Her husband died completely unexpectedly while she was still pregnant with their precious little McKenna. Since Daddies usually have to take over Mother's Day duties for such small babies, I wanted to make sure she felt special on that day. These are the types of things (little acts of kindness) that I want to explain to Anderson now that he's getting a little older and he was so cute...he held the little flower pot all the way there and we practiced saying "Happy Mother's Day, Ms. Beth", but when she finally answered the doorbell he just kind of froze! He wasn't even going to give her the flower until we reminded him that it was hers not his! Oh well you have to start somewhere right?

Speaking of her link to the right and check out her video. McKenna (at 4 months old) accepted the MBA that her Daddy was awarded posthumously at UA's Saturday made me cry, but it was so sweet at the same time to see everyone support Beth and McKenna with a huge round of applause.

Friday, May 9, 2008

New Look...

I am working on a blog revamp...bare with me. It may take a few tries to get it the way I want it.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Bubble wrap and applesauce!

Here are two recent videos that will give you a little glimpse into the joy I get each day being home with our mischievious little monkey!

Here he discovers the joy of bubble wrap. It's fun stuff!

Here he goes on and on about his favorite food...Applesauce. It is worth it to watch the whole thing. He gets pretty animated toward the end.

Monday, May 5, 2008

A few of my favorite things...

I couldn't resist posting some pictures of some of the beautiful gifts we received for Lydia at her "sprinkle" yesterday. You know this sweet baby isn't going to run out of things to wear when you have to take two pictures to get in all the gifts from the shower! Scroll down one more post to see pictures from the party.

My grandmother handmade this gorgeous pink blanket. It is so soft and will be a family heirloom for sure! It's hard to see, but it is a very intricate design.

Jeff was so thoughtful. He and Anderson totally surprised me and got Lydia this adorable outfit for next fall. He snuck it in with the other gifts at the shower. Check out the elephant...she is wearing red high heels! I love it!!

So sweet...a personalized silver bracelet from my grandmother's sister. It's her first piece of jewelry

Several newborn gowns for the hospital and few weeks afterwards. They are all so soft!

These outfits are from my friend Kim and I LOVE them because they are sort of vintage cute!

Adorable big brother little sister outfits from my friend Jennifer

A good southern girl starts out with lots of monogrammed items! :-) I especially loved the personalized diaper bag from Jeff's mom, the lime green pillowcase dress and of course the leopard print monogrammed onesie!

A video monitor from my mom!

Jeff's granny Dot who passed away a few years ago made this porcelain doll and painted it as well as sewing the entire gown and bonnet. She was a very talented artist and Jeff was so happy that his mom saved this doll for him for all these years in case he ever had a daughter. I can't wait to display it in Lydia's nursery!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

A "sprinkle" for Lydia

Sunday afternoon some very generous friends hosted a baby "sprinkle", not to be confused with a baby shower for Lydia and me. The invitation was adorable and the wording was perfect for a second baby.

I had a wonderful afternoon at NorthRiver with women that have really impacted and shaped my life in one way or another both in the past and the present. My bible study friends the "soul sisters" from our old church were there as well as many of the members of the small group Jeff and I lead at our new church. Most of the female members of mine and Jeff's family were able to make it, some driving 3 or more hours to attend. I also had a few lifelong childhood friends there and some new friends I have met through various playgroups since having Anderson. I was totally overwhelmed by all of the sweet, sweet gifts that this group of women gave in anticipation of our precious Lydia's arrival. It was so much fun to open all of the girly, frilly things. I am still in such awe to have been blessed with the experience of preparing for both a boy, with Anderson and now a girl, with Lydia.
Jennifer C., me and Ashley W.

Mom and me

Adorable gift!

Me and Karen W.

Most of the women in my family (and John)

Jeff's niece Anna, me, Jeff's mom Judy and his sister -in-law Andrea

The four preggies: Amy Smith, Nikki Richardson, Leila Holley and me. We are all due within a month of each other. All of us except Amy (this is her first) had boys the first time around within about 6 months of each other and the three of us are having girls for our second babies!!

Amy and I live three doors down from each other, both of our husbands are attorneys, we are both due on August 8th and our last names are both Smith...oh and we both wore the same dress...oops!

My favorite surprise guest. Jeff brought Anderson towards the end of the shower!