January 29, 2014

Still Here. Still Pregnant.

Well, the month started out pretty well for blogging but I fizzled out quickly. So much for that.

January has passed fairly quickly which has been nice. It's one of my least favorite months so it's good to get it behind me. I don't love February either but at least it's shorter, and if Bacon can hold out for a few more days we'll have a February birthday to look forward to from now on. (There are other February birthdays in the family but they belong to Washington peeps so we don't get to help celebrate them. In other words: no cake for us.)

And when I refer to Bacon holding out for a few more days I'm being sarcastic because actually I think he or she is going to follow in the footsteps of the blonde child and refuse to be born at all and have to be evicted. Honestly I can't say I blame him/her as I wouldn't want to come out of a cozy uterus in the middle of winter, either.

It has been insanely cold all month, and has snowed several times. As I'm sure you know, snow is my favorite thing ever (insert more sarcasm.) The girls have gone out to play in it a couple of times,
Aren't they cute all bundled up?
and I did a repeat of last year's experiment and brought some inside for them to play with. I have, however, largely avoided having to go out in it myself, aside from trips to and from the car. Pregnancy makes for a great excuse. Next I'll have a newborn, which is also a great excuse.

A couple of really neat things have happened this month:

First of all, Eric was unexpectedly promoted to acting lead man of his department a few weeks ago. This was an opportunity that we figured to come up sometime in the future, but never so soon. He has been learning the ins and outs of his new job and so far so good. At the same time as his promotion, hours were cut from fifty a week to forty which is a mixed blessing -- it means smaller paychecks, but it also means things are quieter in the department while he is learning. It also means that he will be around here more after Bacon is born which will be really nice. When he's working 55 hours a week I worry about the amount and quality of sleep he is getting and it will only get worse with a newborn. This way I won't feel so badly when he is awakened by a crying baby every night. In any case, we are so thankful for this job opportunity and the fact that he was chosen to take it!

Secondly, one day last week Eric came into the kitchen and asked, "Do we have plans on Saturday?" I gestured to the empty calendar and said, "Nope!" and he said, "Well, we do now. Everything is all worked out." I was excited to have a date all planned out by him, including childcare. But when we arrived at the house where I thought we were leaving the girls, I realized that there was something else going on. Sure enough, the house was full of ladies from church: a surprise Bacon shower! I was truly surprised, I hadn't expected anything. I got a generous gift card that everyone must have gone in together on, as well as a few individual gifts, like this shirt:
What are the odds of grandparents finding a baby bacon shirt? I ask you!
And these lovely burp cloths made by a friend:

Aren't they pretty? I love the fabrics she chose! (Pardon the poor photo quality; this picture does not do them justice.) I can attest to how difficult it is to find gender-neutral anything that isn't yellow ducks or gray elephants or the like. I can't wait to use these -- I immediately put one into my hospital bag.

We played games and ate amazing food. One of the best parts was that my dear friend Reenie was there. She gave a devotional comparing bacon with aspects of Christianity -- it was so clever and well done. (Well done! Punny!) It was SO sweet of everyone. Unfortunately since I wasn't expecting it I didn't have my camera, and I didn't think to take pictures with my phone. But it was really, really nice!

My sewing machine is still in residence on the dining room table. I wanted to make some things for the baby, but only have the time plus energy once or twice a week so there the machine sits until I'm able to work on something. My first project was going to be burp cloths. I carefully chose fun coordinated fabrics, and it made me so happy to look at them all together that I decided to make a quilt.

The original fabrics
Oh, brother. My mother, who has quilted for many years, could have put this very simple quilt together in an afternoon (probably less.) It took me HOURS, people. Hours and hours spread out over many days. Actually it took a few weeks of working on it off and on. Of course I chose fabrics with designs that ran a certain direction, and none of the cuts I got from Joann's were quite straight so it took some doing to get straight blocks. I didn't have enough of the original fabric I bought, so had to go back for more, but they didn't have all of the prints so I had to find more that coordinated. I sewed blocks the wrong way together. I ripped out so many seams.
top pieced together

I wanted to back the quilt with minky -- goodness, that stuff is stretchy! I spent a LOT of time googling and reading tutorials about piecing blocks together and binding and turning and top-stitching and sewing with minky (tip: lots and lots and LOTS of pins.)  
I sent this picture to my mom asking, "Do you think there are enough pins in this?"
For almost every step I made with the quilt, I put together a burp-cloth-sized experiment one to make sure I was doing it right. This burpie, for example, was what helped me to make up my mind that I absolutely, positively did NOT want to spend several more hours binding the edges of my quilt.
Peabody immediately laid claim to this one. I only just sneaked it away from her today.
Finally, finally I finished it! At this point I don't know that I could say it was worth all of the time and effort. If I had known just how long the whole project would take I probably wouldn't have started it. But ... I do love how it turned out. I left it in the living room for days just so that I could look at it.

I did make a few burpies out of leftover fabric. Eric had the brilliant idea of sewing a loop onto each one so that it can be attached to a car seat or stroller harness, or have a toy or binky hooked onto it. They are only two layers of flannel sewn together, so I don't know how practical they will be as burp cloths, but the cheery fabrics were fun to work with and I gained some sewing experience.

In my multiple browsings through snuggly flannel at Joann Fabrics, I came across another print that just begged me to buy it ... so I made a couple of reversible blankets. Not that we NEED any more baby blankets. I just thought the print was fun and I love the colors.

Poor Bacon is probably going to be way over-stimulated with all this color going on!

And lastly, a 39-week picture. 


Chrissy said...

I love the fabrics you chose so SO MUCH! You found great gender neutral ones that were really nice and colorful! I didn't even see those ones when I was there picking out the burpcloth fabric! The quilt turned out so so well. And I love Eric's idea about a loop on burpcloths. I'll have to steal that idea for the next time I make some!

Rhonda said...

Aww, everything looks so pretty. You know, it was difficult, but Naomi had to pass the 3rd and 4th to have her own birthday, and I was in labor all that time. Bacon needs to have a personal day, but if the 5th works out.....we're good!