15 Jul 2015

Jayce's Birthday Party

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For Jayce's first birthday after we moved to London we had his party at Snakes and Ladders, with a small variety of handmade "superhero" favors and details.  Last year, we had his party at home.  I wanted to do something relatively inexpensive but fun, and I DIYed it to the max with a Lego theme throughout and he loved it.  I'm sure that there are plenty of kids who don't care one way or the other about details, but he got excited about each of the details so that made it fun for me too.  It was just right but it was a LOT of work.  Lots.  This year, well before his birthday, I asked what he wanted to do for his party and started subtly planting seeds for him to have it at Snakes and Ladders again.  I found out I was pregnant in late March (I think?) and my lack of any energy whatsoever further confirmed that we would not be throwing a party at home.

Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 1Luckily Snakes and Ladders had a 2 million pound renovation last summer, so it is pretty legit, and he was excited to have a party there this year. 

Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 6Chris and I were delighted to pay for it and leave absolutely all of the work to someone else.  At that time of the party we knew that we would be moving to the US in about a month and we were so happy to be able to give Jayce a good party with a group of his favorite friends and not have to add anything extra to our enormous to do lists.  We showed up, he had a blast with his friends, and then we went home. :)

Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 13Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 10Hannah obviously attended the party and was as involved as she always is.  It has never occurred to her that Jayce's friends aren't there to play with her just as much as they are there to play with Jayce.  They all talk to her and often include her at school as well, so she fit right in and played happily among a mostly 7 year old crowd.  

Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 17Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 11We lucked out that it was a really warm and nice day outside so Snakes and Ladders was the least crowded that I have ever seen it.  I think most everyone was outside enjoying the rare sunny day which meant that the kids that were a part of the party were able to move around the place in a little pack.  They would stay together for a bit and then break up to do different activities and then join up again a little later.  It was genuinely perfect.

Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 16Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 21When the kids finished playing we went the "Submarine Party Room" for lunch and cake.

Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 22Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 23Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 24Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 27Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 26Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 29Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 31Snakes  Ladders Birthday Party 35They sang, they ate, we left with tired kids and a bag of presents to open.  Perfect.

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20 Jun 2015

On Back and Forth Pregnancy

When I was 3 weeks and 2 days along I knew that I was pregnant.  I don't care if it seems silly or like maybe it was all in my head, but it is 110% true.  (That's extra true, because of that extra 10%.) 

Lots of pregnancy magazines and websites will tell you that sometimes it is hard to tell if you are pregnant at the beginning because symptoms can be similar to PMS symptoms, or unrelated to anything to do with a baby.  It is not enough to feel a little sick or have unexplained tiredness and then attribute it to possible pregnancy, because those symptoms could be due to pregnancy or they could be attributed to a variety of other things.  

IMG 6660That said, even though it was very early on, on that Monday I was as sure that I was pregnant as I was of anything else in my life.  I had a variety of symptoms and felt (more than anything else) just utterly pregnant.  It was (arguably) too early to test but I got a few tests from the store anyway.  The kids were about to be out of school for the next 16 days and I had been working late on a lot of my Stylo looks, trying to finish as much as possible before their break started so that I could be fully present with them and not thinking about my to do list.  But I had this nagging thought in the back of my head that if I was pregnant than I should start making adjustments to take better care of myself: go to bed instead of pushing through, eat healthier, take a break instead of having extra coffee when I was dragging, etc.

I picked up a double pack of tests on my way to pick up Hannah from preschool and took one after we got home.  I know that mid-day testing is a no-no that early on because it's not very accurate, but because I was feeling everything so strongly I just went for it anyway.  

No plus sign. 

I drifted off to sleep with Hannah feeling really confused about what I was so sure that my body was telling me.  I left the test in the bathroom and didn't look at it again, because there is nothing that feels quite as condescending as a negative pregnancy test, and I didn't want to see it again.  

A few hours later just before Chris got home I grabbed something from the bathroom and glanced again at the test  despite myself.  I thought that I saw the faintest plus sign, but I honestly thought that I was just wishing it on there, or that maybe my eyes were playing tricks on me.  I remember that I kept staring at the wall for a few seconds and then back at the test trying to make sure that I wasn't just squinting the test into submission.  Chris got home a little later and after checking the test and instructions we agreed that it was a faint plus sign.  

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Which is why the next few days were so baffling.

When I woke up the next morning I took the second test right away, the most reliable and accurate time, and in flashing black digital letters the words "Not Pregnant" stared up at me.  The test instructions and Google informed me that I had likely been pregnant but that it had already ended.  That week I threw myself into various projects and tried not to let my mind wander, but in general we can just call that "The Week of Blank Staring."

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On Friday of that week I was at a friend's house and had told her about my week.  She mentioned that she had an unopened pregnancy test at her house and that I would be taking it with me when I left, which I did.  Hannah and I ran a few errands and I took the test when we got home.  I was surprised again, this time with a postive.

I want to say that this was followed by celebration, but honestly the back and forth of the week had Chris and I on guard.  The next few weeks I took care of myself in all of the right ways (naps, good food, vitamins, etc.) but I felt a bit like I was just waiting for the other shoe to drop.  I had a good few weeks with the kids while they were off of school.  We went to the park, took naps together, ate well, went for ice cream.

IMG 6645The shoe never dropped.  When I was 7 weeks I let myself get a picture or two of what appeared to be a small but emerging baby bump.   

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I also heard the heartbeat at 7 weeks, via my iPhone.  (I know, I know, but seriously, this app.)  Technology for the win.

And the baby was real and known and loved.  And we are so happy. 

9 Jun 2015

Telling the Kids

Last week after we got home from our first ultrasound, we told the kids about the baby.  

2 Jun 2015

All the Stripes Twisted Tank

I am so glad to be joining in on Laura's Twisted Tuesday pattern tour today!
Laura of Titchy Threads has two fun patterns out where the side seams are twisted around to the front and back of the garments, and the results are just so clever and cool.  I had planned to use her Twisted Trousers pattern make a lightweight pair of summer pants but the fabric I had bought was ALL WRONG in every way.  Sigh.  Luckily I had been dying to make a Twisted Tank as well and this was the perfect opportunity.  You know I had to throw some stripes in there.

28 May 2015

Floppy Bow Limon Top

 I am so happy to be joining in on the Willow & Co pattern tour today because I am really excited to show you this amazing top that I made this week!
The Limon Dress and Top is the latest pattern by Elizabeth of Charming Doodle that I'm just all obsessed with.  (My other favorites makes from her patterns are these incredible pants, the best hoodie, who could forget the reindeer head, and these pants featured in Stylo.) 
This pattern has sweet and feminine details but still seems young and sassy enough for a little peanut to strut around in. 

27 May 2015

Our Family Four + One

If it seems like things have been a little quieter here on the blog than usual, my apologies, but at least now I can finally share why.
We are all so thrilled with this happy news and delighted to finally be able to share that by the end of the year we will be a family of five.  Our smiles are bigger in real life. :)

22 May 2015

Jayce at Seven

 Jayce, I don't know how it happened, but you are seven.  
It seems incredible to me because that seems like the age of a kind of "big kid," which I guess you are now.


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