I’m running out of clothes that fit which is a serious problem folks.  That’s why, when I tried this dress on a week ago and realized it fit except for one minor detail – the length – I had to do something about it asap.june292012 001

The plan:  lengthen it.  The fabric:  ‘Diamond Eye’ fabric from JoAnn’s.june292012 002 

The ground being about eight inches from the bottom of the maxi, I bought a foot of this lovely geo only to bring it home and realize it wasn’t wide enough.  Back to the store I went the next day to get a foot more.  After sewing the two pieces together, I quickly lugged out my machine and attached my extender fabric with a simple straight stitch around the entire bottom of the dress, making a pleat, just because, every six inches like so:june292012 003

And wala:longer

Now I’m down to four dresses instead of three (maternity pants feeling a teeny bit constricting around the lower belly these days upon sitting) and a few sweat pants and shorts.  Here’s to hoping these girls come soon, opening up my still somewhat limited wardrobe.  :)

Have a great weekend!  Maybe I’ll have a belly pic this week, maybe I won’t.  Time will tell!  :)

Twins: 35 Weeks

35 weeks

These things I know for sure:

(as she steps onto soapbox)

1.  I went to put on one of my favorite maternity (non-maternity actually but just very loose) shirts today only to find that the bottom fourth of my belly was visible to more than just people at heights under three feet…sad because I swear I just wore it a few weeks ago.

2.  During the past few weeks, maybe months, I have not had one speck of food spilled onto my pants as my belly has acted as a shield and saved me from whipping out the good ‘ole stain remover.  My shirts, well, they’re another story.

3.  My feet, and sometimes even my ankles, are now perpetually unrecognizable.  I thought I’d get away without this plague of pregnancy until a couple of weeks ago.  C’est la vie…

4.  However, the marks of stretch I have so far evaded.  How?  I have no clue.  I’m sure it’s nothing short of a small miracle considering this small mountain I carry around each day…and maybe good genes (thanks mom and dad) and cocoa butter.

5.  Either a grueling tennis match was going on in my abdomen the other morning or both kiddos had the hiccups at the same time for the first time.  Considering my size, the first option really isn’t that unrealistic.

6.  I am still trying to grasp the reality that I will be a primary caretaker of two little souls that will enter this world in the next couple of weeks.  I was watching them move yesterday and put my finger on what was probably a knee or heel, realizing that only a few layers of skin and muscle separated us and how soon, nothing will.

7.  Instead of the usual looks of “you’re huge” I was getting, I get more looks (and comments) these days that make me sometimes feel like the ninth wonder of the world.  Lots of people are amazed I’ve gotten this far and am still up and around but most people are amazed at how apparently “little” I am for having such a big belly.  I don’t know if it’s meant it in a good or bad way but I’m never sure how to respond.  Yes, my parents passed down to me the smallest bone structure in the world and for years I was plagued by it but behold, I have put close to 40 lbs. on this bod since the beginning of this pregnancy which I think is pretty darn good.  Anyway, that’s all I have to say about that.

8.  I am so absolutely blessed to have the most incredible husband in the world and I can’t wait for his little girls to meet him and to be like him.  I can’t wait to be lead by him as a family through life and then to heaven.  I also can’t wait to see two teeny, tiny babies nestled in his big, strong arms.  And now I have to stop writing about him because I’m tearing up…gosh, I love him.  :)

9.  After I have a nap, I’m off to the store to buy much needed groceries and all the ingredients to make these cookies that I’ve been dying to make since Grace posted about them.  They just might serve as my dinner tonight and breakfast and lunch tomorrow with a prenatal vitamin in between for a little variety.  :)

(aaanndd she steps off her soapbox, awkwardly and not without huffing, but she does)

PJ Refashion: Part II

If you missed Part I of this little refashion, read about it here

After I ‘summerized’ the legs of my hand-me-down pjs, I was left with these:june202012 010

Waste-not that I am, I knew there had to be something I could use them for, even if it just be rags.  But then, I don’t know if it was a little reminder jab from one or both of the girls or just a plain ‘ole light bulb goin’ off, but it dawned on me that these two pieces of fabric would make perfect infant maxi skirts!  They’re already hemmed on one side anyway, so all I’d have to do is figure out how to add elastic to the top and bang – baby’s en vogue!  The only minor problem, I’ve never sewed in elastic before…but, not knowing has never stopped me before, right?

So, materials:  2 pant leg remnants, a yard or so of 3/8 inch elastic (you can use whatever width you desire), a safety pin, sewing needles, and a sewing machine (or your hands and a needle and thread if a machine you do not own).

Disclaimer:  Before I begin on my tutorial rant, I must tell you that this little rant in particular is the epitome of “winging it”.  Like I typed above, I’ve literally never sewed with elastic so I used what I thought I knew about it as I was too lazy at the time to look up anything of real value.  Copy at your own risk/discretion/whatev.

First I pulled out a newborn-sized onesie and measured the belly of it to get an idea of how big/small I should cut the elastic to.june202012 011

Not knowing exactly where the skirt would eventually sit, I ended up making the top about 12 inches in circumference to allow for baby fat, the diaper…basically whatever I might not be thinking about due to my relatively beginner knowledge on baby wear.  If they ended up being too big, I figured they could always graduate from ‘maxi’ to ‘knee-length’ status as baby grows.

Next I sewed a seam around the entire top of the skirt leaving enough of a hem to make sure my 3/8 inch elastic band could fit inside the new pocket of sorts and also making sure to leave a small, two-inch opening to feed the elastic through. june202012 012

Annnddd here comes the possible gray area…if you’re a professional seamstress, you may want to avert your eyes or just scroll down to the completed project.

I read somewhere, sometime ago that to feed elastic through a pocket, you attach a safety pin to one end and then, making sure the other end is securely attached to the starting position, feed it through until the two ends meet.  However, I think I read this pertaining to making a changing pad cover so whether this technique is used on clothes…well, let’s just say it is in my book.  :)

So, doing just what I stated above, I fed the elastic through the pocket of my newly-forming skirt.  (Tip:  Make sure that you feed the elastic through so that it lays flat all the way around and there aren’t any twists in it…my carelessness on this matter left the first little maxi I made with one). june202012 013

Then, I carefully sewed the two ends of the elastic together using my sewing machine.  I actually thought I’d have to hand sew them together at first, being that the elastic was relatively thin but, I put on my big girl panties and just tried to sew them together using my machine and a few back and forth stitches later, I had a perfect union!  june202012 014

After that, I quickly sewed up the gap I had left to feed the elastic through. june202012 015

I seriously considered using my two old Minnie Mouse dolls as models but then came back to reality and just paired two cute onesies my friend Lauren embellished for the girls with their new maxis to show the final products.   june202012 016

I’m going to go out on an “inexperienced mom” limb and say that they’re hopefully more friendly with diaper changes than pants and will be great for the summer and fall.  Now we just need these two to get here…an eviction notice is a couple weeks from being posted.  :)

.           .           .

Before I log off and leave you lovely readers, I thought I’d end with a nursery and kitchen progress update.

Nursery:june232012 002The room is still an ‘organized mess’ but the cribs are assembled and serving the purpose of dresser at the moment.

The closet on the other hand is the only real picture of sanity in the room and is just being added to (or subtracted from once zee dresser arrives) and is also waiting for me to put up some curtains.june232012 003

Kitchen progress:june232012 001Side uno:  Backsplash, done.  Caulking and outlet covers replaced, not done.

june232012 004Side dos:  In process.

Of course, once we’re done I’ll write up a whole post about our tiling fun and the happy dance I’ll be doing (the modified ‘pregnancy’ happy dance, that is) at the mere fact that our kitchen makeover will be complete.

Until next time, have a fancy, shmancy weekend!  :)

PJ Refashion: Part I

So, as you can imagine, I’ve been slowly putting together a hospital bag of sorts.  While I’m sure that looking like a fashionista super-mom will be the furthest thing from my brain after pushing out the two chicklets, I do want to be comfy.  Well, while enlisting the advice of my friend Jenn on hospital garb, she told me she bought and wore a nursing pj set during her stay.  So, off I went to secure for myself a set of my very own.  That’s when I stumbled upon this number going through some hand-me-down maternity clothes the next day:june202012 003

It has a great, stretchy neckline that I’m sure will be perfect for nursing and was probably made for that very reason since it is maternity, except the top was still a little too big for my small upper frame (notice upper is emphasized…the middle however, well, it’s snug at the moment).  So, to save some money and brush up on my sewing skills, I’ll pulled out the ‘ole machine and took an inch and a half off the top area.

june202012 005

I also decided to shorten the pants since it is summertime and sweltering down here in the humid South (and because they were borderline short on my miles of legs).  So, some measuring, marking, pinning, and sewing got me this:

june202012 009

I only hope I’m this happy wearing it to bed in the sterilized room that will become our temporary home in the next few weeks…

Stay tuned for Part II during one of my next taking-a-load-offs…

Twins: 34 Weeks

34 weeks

I like big bellies and I cannot lie…

So the girls had their last ultrasound today – no pictures to show for it though, ‘twas all business  – and it revealed that Twin A weighs 5 lbs. 11 oz. and her sidekick, Twin B, weighs 5 lbs. 10 oz.  Yes, combined that’s a total of 11 lbs. 5 oz…HOLY COW!!!!  So much for thinking early on they’d weigh around 5 lbs. each at birth!  Three things I know for sure, a) they’re gonna be feisty – they were both awake and alert during their photo op and were kicking so much so that the tech had to keep repositioning the wand to get the info she was after, b) I am truly going to know what “light as a feather” feels like right after these two are born as I’ll drop close to 20 lbs. in a matter of minutes with everything that’s stuffed inside my uterus, and c) ‘Legs of Steel’ has nothing on the workout my legs are getting each and every day…and neither does Jillian Michaels, the self-professed “I don’t ever want to be pregnant because of what it does to a woman’s body”.  Whatever lady.

Saturday Post…Wha?

Well, Saturday has come and almost gone and I’ve been mulling all day over the fact that I have yet to whip up my normal Saturday post.  The twin belly has given me some quite uncomfortable nights so my brain is not quite up and running so the thought of writing a detailed post sounds as exciting as eating dirt right now.  However, I’ve got progress I’d be happy to show. 

june122012 490

And that’s it.  :)

I’ve actually spent most of today washing baby clothes…lots and lots of baby clothes.  Next up to hit the machine – burp cloths, cloth diapers (which need to be washed four times before their first use – goodness gracious), towels, and blankets.  Maybe after that all of our girls stuff will be ready for them to get here…just like me.  :)

Have a great rest of the weekend!

Twins: 33 Weeks

33 weeks

As you can see…or if you can see…we seriously need to someday soon invest in a tripod of some sort because I apparently don’t have the steady hand I thought I had.  I’m not sure if the blurry nature of my photos makes me look bigger or not, but who really cares.  The fact has to be faced….I’m BIG!  BIG as in my belly at this very moment is measuring no shorter than 42 inches!  Scarlett O’Hara would pass out at the very mention of this very matter.  Funny though, I don’t feel as big as pictures portray.  My legs and back have apparently profited from painting rooms upon rooms and pretty much everything else as they’re carrying all of this extra weigh without much of a complaint.  :) 

Hung Up

FINALLY!  The new (new as in we bought it brand new over a year ago and it’s been sitting in a bedroom closet since) over-the-range microwave is up!june82012 005 

Here’s how we did it:

Since we didn’t have the somewhat “required” upper cabinet to attach the microwave to, we had to improvise.  (We actually used to have one there but it hung too low, making any microwave we attached to it lower and closer to the stove than it was supposed to be – the stove top should be at least 16 inches from the bottom of the microwave.)  After searching the internet on how to hang a microwave without an upper cabinet, all we came up with was the option of buying this ‘hanging kit’ that supposedly existed but that we couldn’t find anywhere.  In came Anthony’s great idea to build a shelf that would basically be a built-in cabinet of sorts only without the doors.  We could’ve had doors made to fit or tried to somehow cut ours down to fit but we kinda liked the idea of having an open shelf to store cookbooks and such, not to mention that custom doors would’ve been expensive and over our budget and cutting up our own, risky.  So, a shelf it would be.

So, after we took out the old cabinet (our cabinets were built in place so that’s why there are two notched-out lines in the sides of both side cabinets), I primed and painted the area during my kitchen painting spree a few months ago.mar172012 002  The gaping hole in the wall is where the old electrical wiring for the hood vent came through.  Since neither that, nor the old cabinet notches were going to be seen sans microwave installation, we didn’t bother to fill them in.  Lazy?  Maybe.  Aware of the unnecessary?  Definitely.

Next, Anthony shortened the back of the old cabinet a tad more so that he could use the old vent hood wiring to put in a new outlet for the microwave. may262012 009

Then, up went the new shelf.     may262012 010

The actual ‘shelf’ is a 3/4 inch piece of plywood that was cut-to-size and then screwed on top of two pieces of 2 x 4.  The two pieces of 2 x 4 were firmly attached to each neighboring cabinet and then a two-inch wide piece of wood was attached to the front to make the shelf look built-in.  For added support for the shelf, Anthony also installed a scrap plank of wood behind the front piece of wood but under the shelf.   Get it?  Hopefully the picture helps explain.

After all that, we filled in the screw beds and went to town priming and painting.

The next thing to go up was the wall support that came with the microwave…  june82012 002

…followed by the microwave itself.june82012 006Meanwhile I went ‘house-hunting’, grabbing things from different places in our house to temporarily fill up the shelf until I find some colorful cookbooks to take up the space.

It’s definitely a far cry from where we started circa 2009:cupboard 003

Next thing to go up?  The subway tile backsplash.  At the rate we’re going, we’ll be done with that right before the twins first birthday.  :)  However, we may or may not be planning to start on it tomorrow.  I guess you’ll just have to wait and see.

Twins: 32 Weeks

32 weeks

I’m getting antsy…  That’s one hand, but on the other hand I feel like I’m going to birth these two and then after they’re shown to me for the first time I’m going to be like “Aww…  Cute babies!  Whose are they?”.  Is that weird?  It’s just so surreal.  You’d think watching and feeling them move and poke would hammer into my head the reality of the situation(s) at hand, but no, disbelief at what my eyes can’t see has me stunned (and maybe confused).  Any other first-time mothers have/had that feeling?  Please tell me I’m not crazy!

Other than my confused, crazy mental state, things are going great!  We had a OB appointment this morning complete with a hand-held ultrasound check-up that showed the two sprouts, both still head down (they’ve thankfully been that way for the past two months and here’s to hoping they stay that way until B-Day), both hearts beating like mad, and lots of amniotic fluid to boot.  Lovely, lovely, lovely.

Other happenings this week:

- While walking into Wal-Mart the other day, an employee walking towards the doors as I was coming in literally stopped dead in her tracks and proceeded to back out of the way (way out of the way) as if I were driving a Hum-V through while loudly excreting from her apparently unfiltered lips “WHOA!  You must be ready to go any day now!”  Not concerned at all about my present disproportionate figure, I simply smiled and said “Darn right!  And, could you please back up a little more?  I’m going to need at least 10 more feet of clearance to get to the first item on my list.  As a matter of fact, why don’t you just widen all the isles for me as I’m not sure the current set-up is going to work. “Yes, ma’am”. -

- This past Sunday, our youth group kicked off the summer with their new, handsome youth minister – Anthony Tobin – at a pool party.  There was great food, incredible desserts, and even some “contests” including an off-the-high-dive belly-flop contest and a cannon ball contest.  Much to my disappointment, I was specifically told I wasn’t allowed to compete in the cannon ball contest as I would surely win… -

- In an incoming order of newborn cloth diaper covers that arrived this week, I got a coupon saying “Get a free Milk Daze Nursing Cami with your next purchase of $50 or more”.  Knowing I need at least $50 of cloth diaper paraphernalia still (and a nursing tank!) and not being one to shy away from a bargain, I quickly looked up this soon-to-be-mine-for-free cami just to see what I’d be getting.  I’d like you all to know it has, what they call, a “sexy criss-cross bodice” and the picture portraying this alluring piece looks exactly like this: miikdaze  “Quick sweets!  Get me my pearls!  The babies are hungry!”  Or should I say, (in my sultriest, sexiest voice) “Darling love, you handsome creature you, waltz over to me my pearls.  Our offspring are in need of what only mama can provide.” -

Tulle-ing Around…Again

I’ve been playing with tulle again, purple and yellow tulle this time though in contrast to the ivory of the past.  In the spirit of all things girlie, I constructed a little tutu to adorn the cute belly of a friend’s newborn.  Here are the supplies I used:     june22012 001A onesie, tulle to match (as few or as many colors as you’d like – I used a half yard each of yellow and purple), a pair of scissors, a piece of elastic (I went with a thin, 1/4 inch strand), and (not shown) permanent fabric glue and a needle and thread to secure the knot you’ll make in the elastic.

Speaking Writing of the elastic, I wanted to make sure that once tied to fit around baby’s belly, it wouldn’t come undone so I after I tied a double knot, I ran a strand of thread through the center of the knot and double tied it.june22012 002Then, overachieving or not, I dabbed the entire knot with some permanent fabric glue (making sure to let it dry before attaching the tulle).  Let’s put it this way, baby Colleen can move and twist to her hearts content and her skirt will never fail her.  :)

On to the next, most tedious step in this fun project – attaching the tulle.  I didn’t do the greatest job of photo documenting so I hope my explanations do the trick.  First, I laid out the entire piece of tulle, folded it in half, and then folded it in half the same direction again to create a quadruple layering of tulle.  Then I cut 6 inch strips, giving me three long strips out of which I cut strips two inches wide.  So, in the end I had around 200 or so 2 x 6 inch strips of tulle.  To make things a little less tedious, you can cut wider strips (4 x 6 or even 6 x 6) but I wouldn’t go much longer unless you’re going for a dress look over a tutu.

Next, I tied each individual piece of tulle to the elastic band while watching tv.  It took me a good hour or two to get all of them on.  I only tied one knot and made sure each piece was super-close to the next one which usually required me tying the knot loosely, sliding it over until it touched the previous knot, then tightening. june22012 003

Unfortunately, the only babies I could easily use to model the finished product won’t make their debut for another month or so so once again, you’ll have to rev up that imagination to see how adorbs this would be on any baby girl.june22012 004

I can’t wait to make more for the twins!  I got planz yo…planz for head bandz, belly bandz, and mo…