Monday, October 26, 2009

nursery mural complete!

A week ahead of schedule, we are done the wall mural for the baby's nursery! I'm not sure when we first had the idea of this mural. Probably in the early summer.

Here's the illustration - just the beginning. Nuno created this illustration
of Mother Goose in Photoshop. My input was pretty limited. I just wanted to try using wall paper as part of a patchwork collage element to the mural. We went to Colour Your World and an employee let us rummage in the back room through all their discontinued wallpaper selection. We found three samples that worked and it cost no more than $10. We then had to match the illustration colours to actual paint samples. We used an RGB colour match system online which matched to Benjamin Moore paint samples. We bought their Natura paint so that I could help. A full can of yellow for the entire room, a half of the 2 blues and then a small sample of the brown.

We were going to use Katie's projector and draw the illustations on the wall - but with the hours it would take to do that and the possibility that it may shift in the process, that idea was nixed right away. Instead, Nuno devised a vinyl template system that worked really super well. A man on our street operates a vinyl sign company out of his home and we ordered all the shapes through him. They were then mounted on the wall and peeled off in layers as we painted.

In this photo all the masks are up. And it started to feel like we were getting some results after months of planning!

It took a couple of layers of paint to get our best result. It is so vibrant and full of life when you stand infront of it!

This was the status last week. So close! We just need to find the time to work together and stick the wall paper shapes into place. It is a large wall and just placing the shapes presented many challenges that were a lot of fun to overcome together. Teamwork! Just like what it will take to raise our baby!

This is the final result. We finished at 3:30pm yesterday. We are probably still buzzed from the thrill of finishing this project and how flawless it came out.

This week my dad's bringing back the crib from the US (a whole story onto itself), and we can place the furniture around the room. I'll post photos once that's complete!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

37 weeks along and struggling with a tough decision

I'm at a bit of a cross roads in one of my first controversial motherly decisions. Do I get the H1N1 vaccine while pregnant?

My first reaction is to say, of course! For months now I've been all too aware of the risk associated with later term pregnancy and complications with H1N1. It's actually something that gets scarier as time passes and by that I mean it's actually deadlier than we were first lead to believe from the ever so slight mention of it in prenatal classes. And starting now, we are seeing the infection begin it's second wave and a vaccine to combat it's spread.

The big question is how safe is it? Luckily there are two different vaccines to be distributed. The one which will be given to pregnant women is unadjuvanted - which means many of the chemicals associated with birth defects are not part of this batch of vaccines. Therefore, as much as I understand there isn't very much research in the long term side effects of this vaccine, I do believe it's safe and will attempt to get this vaccine if I can.

I'm not worried about catching H1N1. I am working (for a week and a half more) in a very small office. I'm always vigilant about hand washing and being aware of contact with people who may be ill. I don't plan on going to any crowded places until after giving birth. All the same go for Nuno as well. I've actually gone this entire pregnancy with not even as much as a slight cold. I think what crosses my mind about the vaccine is my baby's life after birth. You see, if I get inoculated while pregnant I'll be producing antibodies that the baby will absorb as part of his immunity. After understanding that there is a whole generation of us who have never been exposed to anything like this virus, and therefore do not have any antibodies to combat it, I'd like my son to have a chance to avoid ever contracting it. I'm actually in the lucky position of having a full term baby and am in the first consideration for inoculation. Once he's born he won't be able to get the shot (it will be more than a year before he can I imagine). If I receive the shot, we need 10 days for it to achieve it's affective potential (so I better not go into labour).

As the circulation of this vaccine seems touch and go I'm not sure I'll even have the chance to receive it in time before delivery. And if I don't, I'm fine with that as well. It will have made the weighty decision all the more easy if I don't get to choose.


On a lighter note, here I am at 37 weeks.

The baby is all curled up and can only roll from left to right. He hiccups and moves frequently. I wonder how comfy it is in there for him? Will he come early, on time, or late? I wonder about those things and try and put H1N1 out of my mind.

Monday, October 19, 2009

peanut butter pie and pumkin farms

The first part of this weekend was devoted to celebrating my dad's birthday. I made a chocolate peanut butter pie. It's a classic icebox dessert from the 50's and I took the recipe from my Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook. It was delicious, but we had to freeze the majority of it for another week. Hopefully then I can grab a photo.

We had some visitors from out of town on Sunday. My nephew Ronan came down with my mother & father in-law to have fun at Howell's Pumpkin Farm. This place is AWESOME for kids and it was a real treat to take Ronan there. We tested out our video camera and the footage we got was great.
Unfortunelty, the whole day totally exhasuted me mentally and physically. Pregnancy can do that since my muscles are still learning to deal with all the extra weight up front. Although you may think handling Ronan was another influence in exhasustion, it was actually my in-laws that tired me out. They were so high strung the whole time. It would be nice if they could let Ronan just be a kid there. But Nuno and Ronan were adorable there and they had tons of fun. Nuno's going to be an amazing dad! I really lucked-out falling in love with him.

Looks like I wasn't the only exhausted one. On the way home Ronan fell asleep in his car seat with one bite of pumpkin donut left in his hand.

He didn't even wake up during his diaper change.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

baby's closet

Only a mom could find talking about her kid's closet interesting - but I am so stoked about how it turned out. Would you believe the people who owned our home previous to us painted the inside of all the bedroom closets? Lets see, we had dusty rose, 2 bright turquoise and purple - like this swatch:
That's what we had to contend with in the nursery, but I give full credit to Nuno for persevering in the cramped space to make sure our baby had a decent closet. I loaded up all his clothes last night and stood back to admire the adorable-ness before we put the doors back on.

Can you believe our baby already has a lifejacket (top left corner) for next summer when he swims at my parent's pool? I couldn't leave it behind in Target's discount for $5!
I hope to have the rest of the nursery pics up once I'm finished work and on maternity leave which is next month.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

30 days till my life changes!

Today marks one month till our due date - Friday the 13th of November. Yep, our lucky day! I'm getting so crazy excited for the arrival of our baby. I feel ready for the labour and delivery, whatever it brings. I know the only predictable thing about childbirth is that it's unpredictable, so once I resigned myself to that then I considered myself prepared. I feel as though if I keep on course with what I've been up to all 8 months prior we are going to do well. That means I'm continuing with cardio to keep my stamina high and doing my prenatal yoga poses daily. Lots of hip-opening and side stretches. Woah, am I limber these days! This is one perk of pregnancy I wish I could keep.

Since we are heading into the end of the pregnancy, here are some things I have going down to get ready for our baby:

• Final purchases.
It's crazy to imagine out of all this loot there are still things we need before the baby arrives. I mean, who'd be in a rush to buy a breast pump? Not me! But I'll have to break down and get one if Nuno and I ever want an evening out again in the next year.

• Nuno is helping me pack my bag for the big day.

• We are sorting through all the newborn clothes, receiving blankets and washclothes and making sure everything is nice and clean.

• Last minute classes in car seats & breast feeding along with a hospital tour.

• We are now cooking meals and freezing the majority of our dinners. So far I've stocked frozen pesto, chicken pot pies, vegetarian chili, lasagna, tuna noodle casserole, swedish meatballs, enchiladas and macaroni & cheese. Before the end of the month I'll probably get around to making portions of shepherds pie, baked penne, eggplant parm and chili chicken taco filling. These baked dinners are my favourite type of dinners to eat and the timing of the pregnancy and baby's birth couldn't be any more perfect for reheated freezer meals.

• Nursery, nursery, nursery! Probably the most rewarding room redo I've ever done and I can't wait to share the results.

Monday, October 12, 2009

thanksgiving 2009

I volunteered to hold Thanksgiving at our house this year. It didn't dawn on me how much work it would be for myself given that our baby is due in 4 weeks - yes - that soon! And as per usual I managed to overexert myself. Starting with full force on the nursery.
We saw some major results this weekend and I'd like to save the room transformation blog post for a grand finale just before I give birth, but I thought I'd give a preview.

I managed to tear myself away from the nursery long enough to bake this chocolate pumpkin tart. I had to get a photo of the pumpkin filling drizzling into the double chocolate crust. This was my favourite part of Thanksgiving dinner. Wait - does turkey BLT sandwiches the next day count? That's my most favourite part of Thanksgiving then!

Next up was getting Hot Tot dressed for the occasion. The scarf she is wearing was created by Leslie who sewed this from scratch. It is an ingenious design where you thread the dog's collar right through the top of the scarf so that it remains secure.

Here's my ever growing self putting the delicious Thanksgiving feast on the table. I swear, there are more pregnant photos of me than any photos before. Nuno can't stop snapping photos and getting video footage - yes, very flattering :)

We had such a huge feast, most couldn't fit on the table and had to sit on the sideboard. This year's menu was turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, pumpkin gratin, green beans, roasted carrots and skillet cornbread.

To drink we had virgin Caesars!

While my dad was slicing the turkey I spotted a piece drop on the ground and Tot may have taken a taste. We don't allow ANY human food in Tot's mouth (I've had dogs who've become hell raisers from growing accustom to table scraps) so I guess this was Tot's Thanksgiving Day treat. I think it's true what they say about the Tryptopahan in turkey - look at how exhausted Tot became at the end of the night.

Although we're having a baby, we definitely have a dog somewhere between pug and baby.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

baby shower #2

This past weekend was a wonderful baby shower thrown by my in-laws. It was loads of fun and part of all the excitement was....

our first time meeting our niece Paige! Here she is with Joe, Sara & Grandma! She's a wonderful baby. She doesn't seem to cry and makes wonderful eye contact with everyone she meets. And her coo's... sigh. I can't wait till our little guy arrives! And it's nice to have a sister-in-law who's recently been through all the trials and tribulations of pregnancy and first time motherhood. Like, unless you enjoy pain, don't give birth in Calgary! hehe I won't get into that.

Some baby clothes are so funny. It looks like we'll have a little miniature Nuno running around since so many of his clothes look like something Nuno would wear.

Kinda cheesy photo of Nuno and I cutting the baby shower cake. This is the first fondant cake I've ever had for a party.

Who'd have imagined the day Joe would be conducting a how-to on Baby Bjorn's.

So, Nuno, are you convinced you need one of these? Lets see if he finds one on Kijiji!