Fake Out

What a happy Saturday it is!  Happy here because I finally have a project to blog about…’er, rather have found time to blog about!  Here’s to hoping I can get back on my regular Saturday schedule from here on out plus maybe squeezing in more posts during the week since I’m usually confined to zee couch with one or two infants in my arms…and since my one-handed typing skillz are world class these days. 

Anyway, I’m all about covering windows.  There isn’t a window, or door for that matter, that isn’t adorned with some sort of fabric in our house except for this one:aug222012 002pxd 

The one in our master bathroom.  Well, I’ve had plans to cover it for many moons but indecisiveness about fabric and the baking of two buns has left it naked…until  now.  Let me digress.  A few months ago I had an itch to switch out our plain white duvet cover for something more flavorful but, like usual, didn’t want to spend a ton of money…as in no more than 20 bucks.  Well, I found a new cover but when I got it home, I realized I had bought the wrong size and unfortunately for me, I bought it at a huge discount - $10 – at final sale.  Poo.  So, I did what I do best and conjured up another use for it…dec12011 011 A decorative blanket/quilt/extra layer on the end of our bed.  Still unable to find a suitable fabric for the master bathroom window at this point, I had a revelation soon after to use the included pillow shams to cover it up. 

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The plan:  to make a fake roman shade (similar to this one in our guest bedroom).  To do first:  take apart the two pillowcases.  At eight months pregnant, at which point I began this project, laziness efficiency took over and I simply just cut off the backs of each case (since they wouldn’t be seen anyway), took the seams out of the sides that would be sewn together, and made them one.

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To achieve a roman shade look, I hand sewed 12 plastic rings onto the backside of the shade in three vertical rows that were evenly spaced apart and then gathered each row together using another plastic ring that opened.  Hopefully these pictures help explain that mumbo jumbo:  aug222012 004

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So, fast forward to this past week during a 15 minute slot when both twins were passed out.  As quickly and quietly as we could, we stapled the new shade to a pre-cut piece of 1 x 2 wood, attached two L brackets to the underside of the wood, decided on and measured its placement over the window (see side note below), and got ‘er up.

Side note:  While planning for the valances we hung in our dining area, I came up with a simple way to figure out the height at which to hang window treatments by holding up a folded piece of paper at a distance, adjusting until I was satisfied, like so:aug292011 002

Once again, I’ve learned to never underestimate the power of a window treatment.  See what a difference this one makes?ba

So, if anyone’s keeping track of the DIY madness, so far we’ve tiled the floors, painted the cabinets, painted the laminate countertop, and stenciled a wall in here.  Even though, in my mind, the room isn’t yet “finished” (will it ever be?), it definitely looks a lot more complete and homey (if you can call a bathroom that) just because of a little (cheap) addition over the once naked window.  :)  aug232012 001 

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Stay tuned for more finished projects!  The girls were baptized a couple of weeks ago and my sister and I made their gowns and accessories and then of course, I’ve got finished pictures of our “new” kitchen to share as it’s finally done along with progress pics of the nursery!  See you soon! 

2 vs. 1

Home alone with the duplicates this eve and I say, “If you can’t beat ‘em, film ‘em”.

IV Magic, Tremors, and Paranoia

*In case you missed the rest of this story, read part 1, part 2, and part 3.*  

Sorry about the wait…a couple of days turned into a week plus.  But I’m back, running on almost five hours of sleep, and going to finish the last details of this birth story once and for all.

So, the twins were born, joy and tears abounded (along with stitches and pain meds…a scary place to which I will not wander), and it was finally time to go to our own room.  Completely unlike the room we were placed in while I was induced and starting labor, our new room was complete with a flat screen TV, a beaut of a bathroom, and lots of space to spread out…or in our case, to store two brand new babes.  I don’t remember much about the couple of hours after the twins were born.  I was probably mesmerized by them and since I couldn’t yet feel my lower half, I had nothing to do but stare at them.  Speaking of feeling my lower half, remember that higher dosage of epidural magic I was given?  Feeling not a thing during labor became feeling not a thing until six hours after the potion was needed.  Aaandd, that’s not all.  It gave me the shakes unlike anyone naked in Antartica has ever seen before and stole from me anything and everything I had eaten and gave it to the trash can held by my adoring, but slightly grossed out hubs.  It was marvelous.  The one bathroom trip I had whilst hanging on to two poor nurses ended in an almost black-out and the wonderful visitors we had were probably scarred as I tried so hard to relax and keep still, clenching my hands together thinking one shaking extremity could hold still the other shaking one.  Never have I ever been phased by anesthesia but this anesthesia packed quite the punch and really made me question the value of an epidural for future, pain-free births.  By late that wonderful night, all side effects had subsided and on came the new challenge – taking care of not one, but two, sweet, little needlings.

I mean, how hard could it possibly be?  I’ve been babysitting for something like 15 years and consider taking care of kids pretty simple.  Yes, I knew sleep would evade me and breastfeeding and changing diapers would become things I could do with my eyes closed but I really thought beyond that, how hard could loving on my two angels be?  I will tell you…I have never, ever been a paranoid person in my entire life, especially when it comes to kids.  That all changed the ninth of July.  I know for a fact that if I didn’t have a little red button attached to my bed that instantly brought me a nurse, I’d be sitting in a psych ward somewhere.  Multiple times Seraphia started gagging on pesky, leftover mucous from birth and I thought for sure we’d have lost her if it wasn’t for a heroic lady in blue coming to our aid (one who then went on to pet our beginner parenting woes by telling us about the incredible ability newborns have of keeping their airways open).  Needless to say, we chickened out both nights we were in the hospital and had the twins sent to the nursery for fear we’d do something wrong or not do something we were supposed to.  By the time Wednesday rolled around and it was time to head on home, we were petrified and almost begged our nurses to let us stay just one more day.  But, sooner than we both knew it, Anthony was behind the wheel of the Twinmobile and I was in the back seat, nicely jammed between the two, now occupied car seats (I had to keep an eye on them in case something happened), and profusely leaking tears of both joy and absolute terror the entire way home.  Ten minutes later, home we were where the first thing we did was set the twins on the kitchen table and hold each other, me still crying of course, seemingly so unprepared for the future. 

Five bittersweet weeks later all four of us are alive and well, family members have been in and out, sleep has been playing hide-and-seek, and the twins are growing – Cecilia still only eight pounds and Seraphia seven – each having gained a pound in two weeks!  We’ve finally come to the conclusion that the only way the twins will sleep more than an hour at a time (and us too!) during the night is in their swings next to our bed after trying and failing at several ways to get some shut-eye – swaddled and laid in a co-sleeper (fail – they hate their arms being restricted and therefore hit and kick each other within the small confines of the co-sleeper),  moving a crib into our room (fail - for some undetermined reason they manage five minutes of sleep before wailing), and several jerry-rigged options involving blankets and boppy pillows.  Five hours of sleep any given night has become a luxury and by the grace of God, Anthony and I have felt semi-rested each day.  Awesome because I distinctly remember sitting on the hospital bed shortly before we headed home with the twins while Anthony was out loading the car and knowing things were going to be okay…crazy, but okay.  During those few moments as I sat staring at our miracles barely filling out their car seats, the song “Be Not Afraid” popped into my head and I started singing it aloud to the girls and soaking up the words:  “Be not afraid.  I go before you always.  Come follow me, and I will give you REST”!  At the time, I took it as God’s way of telling me to trust in Him and all would be well but since then, I’ve also realized He was letting me know He’d help me out in the sleep area too and that He has.

As for the twins birth and the thoughts and events surrounding it I could write forever but then I’d clue you all in on how crazy my mind really is.  :)  I’m sure I’ll have plenty of stories to share in the coming months but now I must be getting back to my passion – DIY.  I’ve managed to squeeze in a few projects during my waking hours that I simply must share and I simply must get back to my regular Saturday posts…crossing my fingers for this Saturday.  Also, my savvy sis Farrah and I have a plan up our thrifty sleeves to start a monthly link-up party soon so stay tuned for that.  Fun will abound. 

Peace, love, and joy until we meet again!  Adios!     

Bean Sprouts: 4 Weeks

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Despite the posts of the last few weeks, my intention is not to transform this here bloggity blog into one solely about my darling children (although their appearances will be numerous) but to keep on keepin’ on with projects, a few of which are being completed between sleeping, feeding, and sleeping so…stay tuned.  :)

The OR, Practice, and Finally

Well, 20 minutes came and went with nary a nurse or doctor or Anthony in sight.  In my mind I was already angry at Anthony for apparently running into someone he knew and holding a super long convo while his wife was laboring with twins floors above or on his way to Mickey D’s after taking one sad look at the apparent lack of selection at the hospital caf or just plain chickening out of watching his daughters being born…and then the door opened and in walked my prince with lunch and the reasonable explanation that there was a huge line for food.  After all, it was lunch time and people do eat.  I knew there had to be a reasonable explanation for his prolonged absence…

  Not five minutes after Anthony marched in with his lunch and started monging did my nurse and doctor waltz in with news that the operating room was prepped for landing and that they’d be rolling me on in to get some practice pushes in…practice pushes?  How hard could pushing be and was practice really necessary?  Heart racing at the thought of the twins impending arrival, I pulled the old smile and nod and let myself be rolled down the hall and into the brightly lit, heavily machined room where one of the best and hardest hours of my life would be spent.

Anthony told “If you feel like you’re going to pass out, just sit down, don’t look for a chair, just sit down on the floor”, stirrups occupied, and the very last shred of my modesty scrapped, the practice pushing began.  Since I obviously couldn’t feel my lower half, I had to be told when to push…a quite unnerving idea and fact.  At my nurse’s command, I had to push and try to clench my overstretched abs as hard as I possibly could for ten seconds, 3 times in a row.  And I thought the hard part was already over…the epidural was sure to make anything that occurred after it’s procurement a cinch, right?  W to the R to the O to the N to the G.  After ten minutes of this so called ‘practice’, our first-born hadn’t moved an inch.  Feeling quite the failure, having lost any energy my morning bowl of Lucky Charms had supplied, and still having no clue as to how I was to move my seemingly unmovable body parts any differently in order to expel her, my new focus was on trying to keep a chipper attitude and hold back imminent tears (and breakfast…lucky on the tears, not so lucky on the breakfast). 

I’ll skip the doom and gloom of the next half hour (spent doing exactly the same thing as the previous 10 minutes with almost the same conclusion) to the moment when my nurse had called my doctor back up to the OR knowing he could remedy the situation at hand – baby having barely moved down and out after 45 minutes of ‘pushing’/me scrunching up my face in hopes that my lower extremities would follow suit and scrunch up and out too.  Well, he did just that.  Wielding the powerful suction-cup-to-head-of-baby tool, I distinctly remember him saying “Get ready to meet your first daughter” minutes after his arrival and out came Seraphia Marie (directly after which I felt tons lighter already and the second amniotic sac was broken) followed by her sweet sib Cecilia Rosaline a mere five minutes after.  The flood gates of tears opened and our amazement was once again compounded as we gazed upon our two little souls in the flesh.

We’ve had glimpses of what heaven must be like in those precious moments after our girls were born and everyday since.  The birth story isn’t over yet though.  Stay tuned for the fourth and final installment coming your way, hopefully, within the next couple days.  :) 
*In case you missed it and want more, read part 1, part 2, and part 4.*