Tuesday, July 20, 2010

So, a YEAR later...

I have tried to keep this blog chronological, but the longer I go between posts, the more hopeless it feels to go back and fill everything in...so I'm just going to start from here and try to fill in the holes...whenever I have time. Which is probably not going to be very often, but it's better than nothing! :)

So, we're having another baby! It's a girl due September 23, and we plan to name her Kathryn Elisabeth. Kathryn is my grandmother's and my sister's name, and they were both also born in September. It's also James's mom's name (spelled the same way!), so it was just too perfect of a name not to choose. And Elisabeth is a family name on my mom's side. Liam will be 2 1/2 by the time she's born, and *hopefully* potty-trained. He's not making any promises, though.
We moved Liam from his room into the back bedroom (my old office...now I work solely from the bonus room. It's actually a little more convenient to have the computer and all my supplies all in one room). The back bedroom is a smidge bigger, so that if we're still in this house for a while, his crib will fit better when we convert it to a full-sized bed. Here are pics of his new "big boy" room:
We added a ceiling fan, new blinds (the LAST room to finally get replaced from the plastic mini-blinds that were here when we moved in...YAY!), crown moulding and panelling and painted the top portion "Mudpie" from Valspar (how appropriate for a little boy's room!), all based on a photo I found in the Restoration Hardware Baby & Child catalog that I LOVED http://www.rhbabyandchild.com/rhbc/design-gallery/index.jsp?navAction=jump&navCount=0&categoryId=rhbc_cat115024#roomid=300018&roomtypeid=100002 (James is such a good sport, and thankfully, very handy!) Though he swears he will never put up crown moulding again. I think we did a pretty good job, but all the angles are so confusing, and combined with all of my raging pregnancy hormones, it made for good argument fuel :)
Cowboy theme...not too much, though. He's obsessed with Woody from Toy Story...I just couldn't do a Disney theme, so this is the next best thing until he gets old enough to really care about how his room is decorated! Ha!

My friend Mandy brought this sweet little sign for him when she heard of his "cowboy" theme...so cute!

I also painted a star on the wall above his crib and attached the letters from his old room (now painted a lighter brown than the wall), so that they stand out about 1/2 from the wall. I still want to make a lumbar pillow for the chair, and get a few photos framed from his cowboy birthday party, but other than that, I think it's done.

And here are pics of miss Katie Beth's new room (Liam's old room)! No new panelling or crown moulding in here (whew!) just new paint color. I fell in love with the crib from Restoration Hardware (on sale...thank goodness!) and since it was kind of a splurge, we made up for it by sanding and painting our old 1990's-fabulous master bedroom furniture pistachio (we got a new master bedroom set for my 30th birthday last year...I'm a lucky girl!) and replaced the brass hardware with chocolate brown cup pulls...looks brand new! I couldn't be happier!

There is a tiny bit of a bird theme, right now there is a fat little bird and a birdhouse on top of the armoire and a sweet little cast-iron bell with a birdie on top on the shelf above her dresser/changing table. I'm looking for bird-shaped push pins for her corkboard above her bed...so far I've found some pewter ones online that I thought I could paint the same color brown as the furniture hardware...

...but I'm not totally in love with them yet, so I'll keep looking. I also just found iron bird-shaped wine corks in the new Pottery Barn catalog that I thought might make perfect finials for the top of her crib...
...IF I decide not to do a fabric canopy. Decisions, decisions...

I ordered the fabric for the curtains online and it was *supposed* to be coral (my friend Catherine gave me the inspiration to use coral from her coral/aqua/celery nursery for her baby girl...check out her blog on my links...it's amazing!), but it turned out to be a bit more orange than I anticipated. I still loved the floral print though, and I thought the color still went well with the green in the furniture and green bumper backing, so I went with it, and I'm happy now that I decided to keep it. The rocking chair was my mom's that she used for both my sisters and me, and I also used it with Liam before we got the glider for Christmas. And I found the floor lamp at a model home sale a few years ago, thinking it would be perfect for a little girl's room...if I ever had one. I am SO happy to get to use it for exactly that purpose! God is so good!

And I found the seagrass rug on sale at Lowe's (it smells SO good!) and chose the wall color based on the edging. I would have rather had chocolate brown edging, but the price was waaay too good to pass up...and I actually like the tan edging better now, I think.

Here is the bedding...I used a natural colored waffle-weave fabric for the inset, dyed it brown and had it embroidered with her initials before sewing the whole thing together (I used the extra waffle-weave to make a matching pillow for the rocker).

My sister Amy gave us this sweet little flat bunny with "Katie Beth" embroidered in its ear. So cute!

The bumper backing fabric...also ordered online, but it was a Waverly pattern I had already seen at JoAnn's so I knew what color to expect. I just found it at half the price online :) And I ordered a giant 100-yard spool of brown grosgrain ribbon online for all of the trim for the drapes and bedding, the bumper ruffle and ties. So there you have it! My sister Brie was a HUGE help in painting both rooms and the furniture, I couldn't have done it without her! And Amy helped paint and arrange furniture, too, even with a newborn to care for...I have AWESOME family! Now I can't wait for our new addition to arrive! Only 8 more weeks to go...I never expected to have everything ready this far in advance...so unlike me! :)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Yellow River Game Ranch!

We went with Tara and Steve and Zoe to the Game Ranch...it was a first time for both Liam and Mommy! I think we were both a little surprised at how the deer were loose and NOT AFRAID OF ANYTHING! Jeez, they were all up in our business! But Liam and Zoe loved every minute and were tuckered out after a very fun day!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


After Liam's birthday, we celebrated his first Easter. Confusing, I know...I wish Easter was on the same day every year. Anyway, he was born the day after Easter, so this was his first official visit from the Easter Bunny and getting all spiffied up for special Easter church. He loved finding all of the cheerios tucked inside his easter eggs, and then having dinner at Nana and Papa's house and digging into his basket of treats and toys there, too. Granny and Granddad also gave him a special basket with candy and goodies. He is a very lucky boy!

Not a fan of the bunny ears, Mom. Don't make me look dumb.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Farewell, Baxter

It has occurred to me that I have left a significant piece of information escape the blog. Baxter is no longer with us.

Before you mourn, know that she is most definitely in a better place. She is happily residing on a farm in Texas with a child-free retiree, likely chasing chickens and reveling her restored status of Queen Bee.

Here's how it all happened: a few months before Christmas last year, James was leaving for work. Ever since she was a puppy, Baxter had shared our bedroom and snored happily at my feet on my side of the bed. Towards the end of my pregnancy, however, mama needed her space and Baxter was banished from sleeping on the bed. Then along came Baby Liam and while Baxter was still allowed to sleep in our room, things were getting crowded.

Baxter was an excellent guard dog. I always felt safe at home by myself with her near - she never let anyone come to the door without a hearty welcome (whether Liam was sleeping or not...guests had to be announced, and loudly!) She also had a habit of "protecting" me in our bedroom after James left for work. When James would leave in the morning (VERY early), he would shut the bedroom door behind him and leave Baxter, Liam and I to sleep until the sun finally came up. If he should happen to forget something in the bedroom after Baxter had already settled herself in front of the door, well, that was just not all right with her! She'd snarl and bark and wake everyone up...but hey, she was just making sure her precious mama and baby were safe!

One fateful morning, James left his keys in the bedroom after he shut the door and came back in to get them. Baxter, as usual, prepared to protect her family and jumped to attention. James, ready for the barking, quickly bent down to shush her. It all happened so fast...all I remember was James bolting upright, holding his face and saying in shock, "She bit me!"

I jumped up and followed him to the bathroom and we assessed the damage...sure enough, Baxter had caught James right above his lip and it wasn't pretty. Not a huge "rush to the emergency room" kind of gash, but it definitely should have had stitches. He still has a scar.

Baxter was hiding under the bed and was very, very sorry. But the damage was done. What if that had been Liam in a year or so, coming into our room after a bad dream? The thought of having Baxter put down never entered our minds. She was a wonderful dog, it was an accident, and who could blame her for protecting her family?
A couple of days went by while we anguished over what to do. The obvious solution would be to find a new home for her without children (she was not a fan of anyone under 4 feet tall except Liam...I suppose she assumed they were a threat to her position in the pack). But who was going to want a 50-lb, 5 year old slobbering ball of wrinkles and muscle?

The answer came so quickly it could only have been planned above. A good friend of ours called (she didn't know of the incident) and asked out of the blue if we ever thought of finding a home for Baxter. Most of our friends knew we had some reservations about how Baxter would do with Liam as he grew, so this wasn't of line at all. Our friend had a co-worker who was looking for a trained English Bulldog as a companion for her mother on her farm in Texas. Within the week, they had come to meet Baxter, were informed of her protective nature, and decided it would be a good match. Arrangements were made to fly her to the ranch. Surprisingly, I was not that upset...babies outrank dogs in the family order any day, and NOTHING was going to hurt my baby if I could help it. I had always called Baxter my "practice baby", but nothing could have prepared me for how much I could love another person, and sadly, we bid Baxter farewell.

We received an update that Baxter was happy and loved watching the goats on the farm and sleeping at her new master's feet. Our bedroom is now much less crowded with Liam in his own room now, and no chainsaw-decibel bulldog sawing logs at my feet.

I still miss her, and I'm sad about how things happened, but I'm happy that she has a good home where she can be loved and bring someone else as much joy as she did for us.

Farewell, sweet friend.

First Birthday Party!

We had planned to have most of Liam's first birthday party outside, but Mother Nature had different plans. It rained all day and forced 50 of our closest friends indoors! We had a great time eating a yummy Lowcountry boil that James cooked on the back porch under some tents and Liam was adorable opening presents and of course, eating his cake. Our AWESOME neighbor Jason Fobart brought his camera and took the most amazing pictures...so if the photos below are beautiful, they're his (my photos are also sprinkled in...you'll be able to tell the difference!). :)
mailbox with monogramed pennant I designed for the little man

the back porch feebly covered in tents...

my girls!
still not walking by myself yet, but I love to practice!

party favors for my friends