sing it with me

liam and kellan
we wish you a merry christmas.
liam and kellan
we wish you a merry christmas.
kellan robert
we wish you a merry christmas,
liam gregor
and a happy...
liam gregor
new...
liam gregor
year!

Surprisingly, I did get a few passable shots for the cards and therefore did not cancel Christmas. But it was a close call.

Fashion Notes

  • Liam’s hat is the Santa Hat from Handknit Holidays by Melanie Falick. It’s made with Knit Picks Gloss HW in wine and Cascade Magnum in ecru. The child’s size used about 1/2 ball of each on US 8 and 15, respectively. The bobble band ended up too big after washing, so I frogged back to remove the last bobble and crocheted a slip stitch on the inside at the join of the band to the crown to tighten it up.
  • Kellan’s elf hat is a simple hat knit with Adrienne Vittadini Mia in soft olive  on US 10.5 (ribbing) and 11s. I’ll try to write up the pattern and post a pdf.
  • Liam’s sweater is vintage (ha!). It is the first sweater that I ever knit and was originally made for my godson Aydan 12 or so years ago. It thrills me to no end that it’s still around and being worn.

as the dust settles

Sorry this post has been so delayed. Life with the new bambino (yes, it’s a boy!) has been, well, let’s just say busy. Last night was the first night Kellan waited at least two hours between feeds. I feel like a hundred dollars. Right now the old baby is at school and the new baby is napping and I am alert enough to type.

Kellan Robert was born on Wednesday, August 25 at 2:43 AM, weighing a hefty 8 lbs. – 9.7 oz. Not too shabby for more than a week early. He measured 20.5 inches in length and entered the world howling and peeing on the doctors.

kellan robert
Kellan - day 3

This birth experience was quite different from Liam’s. I actually went into labor (and don’t recommend it) on Tuesday night. Blame it on the full moon. The hospital was a bit of a zoo (full moon), but they decided rather quickly to bump me to the front of the line for our C. It was definitely more unnerving than waltzing into the hospital at the scheduled time (with no contractions at all) for Liam’s birth, but everything went smoothly and Kellan arrived healthy and strong.

We spent three nights in the hospital while Liam partied with the grandparents. Seriously, the boy didn’t miss us at all. It was such a relief that Liam didn’t freak out. He absolutely adores “his” baby. The only disruption in Liam’s routine had been early wake ups. Since we got home Liam had been getting up between 5:15 – 5:30, much too early. I think, however, that had more to do with his second upper canine tooth finally poking through yesterday than with Kellan. Today he slept until 6:15. Back to normal, I hope.

team snuggle
my boys

Our Kellan left the hospital on Saturday weighing 8 lbs – 2 oz. He’s a fantastic eater. No latch issues at all, unless you count mommy’s pain at the crazy hard suck this boy has. By his 1 week doctor visit on Wednesday, Piglet’s weight was up to 8 lbs – 12 oz. That’s 10 oz in 4 days for those of you not interested in doing the math. Oy. He had been (until yesterday) eating every hour to hour and a half around the clock. One word – “moo.”

Kellan is quite the snuggler and loves sleeping on daddy’s chest. If I remember correctly, I used to like that too… He’s becoming more and more alert with each day and starting to mirror facial expressions. It’s really too cute. It’s funny how different this feels the second time around. There’s much less self-induced stress and it’s much, much easier to just enjoy that little warm body. We’re so lucky…even if I don’t get to make any more ruffles.

on the play mat
bright eyed on the play mat

We’ll go for another well check next week and I’ll do my best to keep you posted in a more timely manner from here on out. The new boss is waking, gotta run.

Here’s the new photo album.

xoxo

still pregnant

Hard to believe, but true. We had our last ultrasound almost 2 weeks ago and finally got some size info. According to the fancy-schmancy ultrasound software, NB measured above the 95th percentile in every measurement and was estimated to weigh…wait for it…8lbs-12oz. That’s 8lbs-12oz two weeks ago.

new baby

We still don’t know the gender of NB, but I’m pretty sure I just ensured us another boy. See I’ve been crazy about the ruffles and the pink and the bonnets and the booties and basically all things girlie. So I finally scratched the itch and hit the sewing machine hard.

seersucker layette

Is it too much? It’s too much, isn’t it? It all started with the bonnet…

Simplicity 3840 baby bonnet  simplicity 3840 baby bonnet  simplicity 3840 baby bonnet

Irresistible, right? It’s Simplicity 3840 and I had to. I rarely buy Simplicity patterns as the few I’ve tried haven’t come together well. But, well, look how cute! This is view F. It’s made with some pink and white striped seersucker that I had laying around (I have no idea why I had pink and white seersucker in my stash.) and some newly purchased white seersucker. The white fabric was fused to the pink and then raw edge appliquéd using the blanket stitch setting on Curvy.  Though the pattern didn’t call for it, I edge-stitched the assembled bonnet (while still flat) using the stretch stitch. The ties are fabric rather than the ribbon called for in the pattern and the buttons were made with a Dritz Cover Button kit.

bitty bootiesAlas, even the sticky cuteness of the bonnet wasn’t enough, so I moved on to booties. Heather Bailey’s Bitty Booties, to be exact.  These were made with 2 layers of seersucker rather than the called for wool felt. They require more hand sewing than machine and once again, the buttons were made with a Dritz Cover Button kit. The button loop is a hair elastic. Those things are sooo useful. And the trim at the top is whip-stitched perle cotton.

frayed ruffle buttBut what about ruffles? Who doesn’t love ruffles? On to the ruffle butt onsie… This was to be the pièce de résistance. The pinnacle of baby girl fashion. Foot after foot of 1-1/2 inch seersucker marched through my ruffler, set at 1 pleat per stitch and a stitch length of 4.

Aside: I now recognize that my life before the ruffler was empty and meaningless.

9 (or maybe 10) rows of ruffles were then attached to the butt of the onsie as shown in Fireflies and Jellybeans tutorial. The edges of the ruffles were left raw, for some fraying. I loved this onsie…then I put it through the wash. Funny thing about seersucker, it gets super crinkly and tightens up A LOT, despite having been pre-washed and dried. So, the ruffles shrunk up and looked awful and the world was a bleak and gray place.

Then I spent 20 minutes ironing the business end of a onsie, ruffle by ruffle, which is totally going to happen every time the onsie is washed. It looks ok now, but learn from my mistake – don’t use seersucker for little ruffles.

Anyway, since the ruffle butt was a complete catastrophe (good thing pregnancy hormones aren’t making me melodramatic), I needed another piece to complete the set. Enter the skirted onsie.

skirted onsie  waistband detail

Basically, I ran a wide piece of seersucker folded in half through the ruffler and attached a waistband then sewed the top of the waisband to the onsie. Here’s the step-by-step.

  1. Waistband – Cut a 3″ wide strip of fabric long enough to encircle the onsie plus 1/2″ seam allowance and sew short edges together to form a tube.
  2. Skirt – Cut a strip a strip of fabric twice the desired length of the skirt and the full width of your fabric.
  3. Fold the fabric in half, right sides together and ruffle. Be sure to leave long threads for adjusting the gather.
  4. Tweak the gathering until the ruffle length matches the waistband, plus 1/2″ seam allowance.
  5. Open the edges of the ruffle about an inch and sew into a tube. Adjust the gather at the seam.
  6. Match the skirt seam and the waistband seam and sew the skirt to the waistband. The right side of the waistband should be facing the inside of the skirt.
  7. Fold the waistband in half and fold in the remaining edge. Then attach to the front of the skirt using a decorative machine stitch.
  8. Finally, attach the top of the waistband to the onsie.

Loose instructions, I know. Best I can do though, ’cause I winged the whole thing.

Sheesh, what a chatty post. Enjoy your day.

how i spent my summer vacation

Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s been a while since the last post. In my defense, I’m lazy. And pregnant. And sweltering through day after day of temps in the mid 90s and heat indices hovering around 105. So sue me.

First, the new baby. These pics are over two weeks old. The last US is scheduled for August 12. Not long now…

new baby  new baby

And the old baby…busy, busy, busy. It’s just too darn hot to play outside this summer, so we’ve been doing our best to find indoor entertainment. Here are a few pics from our Aquarium adventures.

liam gregor
hangin' with the frog
liam gregor
fish!
liam gregor
alligator
liam gregor
investigating
liam gregor
riding the snail
liam gregor
at the touch tank

And here are some of the boy’s favorite critters. Liberty, the bald eagle, is tops. She’s right up there with the white alligator (not pictured). Alas, I couldn’t get a shot of the white alligator, low light and a hyper-spastic child were working against me.

bald eagle skunks barn owls sea turtle scuba divers

Liam and daddy also took a vacation to visit Grandma and Grandpa in the mountains for the 4th of July. Mommy stayed behind and slept. As you can see from the photos Grandpa and daddy took, everyone had a great time. Lovely weather and lots of fun nature adventures.

Adventuring…

liam gregor
fishing
liam gregor
hiking
liam gregor
rock collecting

And picnicking…

liam gregor
with grandma
liam gregor
table dancing

Plenty of action at Liam’s Place too…

liam gregor
in...
liam gregor
out!
liam gregor
i see you.

And some harrowing details I wish I’d not seen…

liam gregor
permanent marker!

liam gregor
can i touch it?

Good times.

29 weeks

Here are a couple of images from our 3-d ultrasound last week. The new baby is really filling out. Just look at those cheeks! Alas (s)he once again spent the bulk of the hour hiding. Hands are in front of the face in all of the videos, unfortunately.

new baby new baby

Since these ultrasounds are part of a study, we don’t really get much info. The baby’s heart rate was 140 bpm and we were able to see the baby swallowing and hiccupping and yawning and opening his/her eyes. If you look very closely at the lower image you can see the open eye. Very, very cool. I start visiting the Dr. every 2 weeks now and have another 3-d scheduled in July. We’ll keep you posted.

new baby, old baby

Can you believe that the old baby is 18 months old? He’s so big. And cute. And independant. And stubborn. And energetic. And I’m tired just thinking about keeping up with him this afternoon. 

liam gregor
don't believe anything she writes...

We had our well check last week. According to the Dr., Liam is doing great. I forget the exact numbers but he grew around an inch and put on about 3 pounds in the past three months. So, he’s still in the 75th for height and head and 50th for weight. He’s healthy and on par with the developmental milestones – stacking blocks, identifying body parts, using a fork, saying “no” to everything mommy suggests, etc. 

This weekend our big boy found baseball. I’ll try for pics with his new tee-ball set this week. He’s also very into “art”. The next Jackson Pollock (without the hooch issues, I hope) is my guess. He drags his crayons out daily and loves sidewalk chalk. 

liam gregor  liam gregor  liam gregor  liam gregor 

Liam is also a huuuuge fan of the baby pool. It’s already so hot down here, we have to keep him watered down while outside. He has started showing some interest in his potty recently too. Not actually using it, but signing potty and saying “pee-pee” (emphasis on the “p” sound, outrageously cute) and sitting on it after his bath in the evenings. I love the idea of letting him run about outside naked, but am afraid of sunburn and injuries to his “special purpose“. 

Well, that’s the deal with #1 and now onto #2. 

Fresh off the glucola, here’s a brief update. New baby’s heart rate is about 155 bpm and we’re measuring 28.5 cm. That’s a little big for 27 weeks, but within normal. NB has moved up alieviating some of the pressure on my pelvis and bladder (yay!) and squishing my lungs and stomach even more (boo!). (S)he has started lounging in Liam’s preferred spot, along the right side of my belly, head (I’m guessing) in front of my ribs. I’m huge and sore and tired and whiney.  The Flyers are not helping my mood. NB should have quite a vocabulary after last night’s game. 

There you have it. We’ll keep you posted.

lost: mommy’s mojo

For the life of me I cannot take a decent photo of Liam. Haven’t even tried other subject matter as my enthusiasm for photography is at an all time low. So sorry, because that boy is cuter than ever.

liam gregor liam gregor liam gregor liam gregor liam gregor liam gregor

See?

Anyway, Liam is the proud owner of 11 teeth. He had 6 front teeth for ages, then in rapid succession in the past 2 months he’s cut his 2 lower lateral incisors and 3 of his 4 first molars. The 4th may be in. I haven’t gotten a good look in his mouth in a while. There was minimal disruption, just an occassional dose of Motrin before bed and a few early mornings and missed naps.

He has the best facial expressions and is even more of a bundle of energy (if you can believe that!). Liam has been trying more and more words but still relies heavily on his signs. He’s a madman outside. Can go from sparkling clean to absolutely filthy in minutes. It’s shocking how dirty he gets. Yesterday, he was adding dirt to the neighbor’s bird bath and then wiping the resulting mud across his face. B’s planning to build us an outdoor shower to help us cope with our little Lord of the Flies.

Since our vacation in NC, Liam has been on a 7pm to 7am sleep schedule. His naps are still somewhat variable, but generally happen around 1:00 and last anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. He had one whopper for Grandma – 3.5 hours, and a couple short 45 minute naps for me, but normally it’s 1.5-2 hours.

And in new baby news, all is well. Here are some images from yesterday’s ultrasound. NB is quite the wiggle worm. (S)he’s been beating me up from the inside out for weeks already. Check out the long fingers and giant feet…

23 weeks 23 weeks 23 weeks 23 weeks

And that’s that.