Thursday, June 30, 2011

Luke's Crib

The crib is on its way and might even be here this afternoon! It is the Mercer Modern Convertible Crib by Babyletto. I purchased it from but they also have it at (same $399 price tag, though).

I just love this crib, and it is going to match the vintage dresser and chest of drawers I'm using in the nursery well once I have the sides and drawers painted white (I'm leaving the tops brown). You can see a picture of the chest of drawers at the bottom of an earlier post.

I love that the crib has the drawer at the bottom. I plan on storing extra sheets, blankets, etc... in there. It also comes in all white or all brown. The toddler rail is already included as well. Thank you to my parents for buying this for us.

I'm still undecided about whether to have a bed skirt made for it. Maybe I'll wait until I get it assembled (until Lee assembles it) to see whether it really needs one or not.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Baked Feta in Tomato Sauce and a Simple Green Salad

Lee was out of town last night, so I was on my own for dinner and I was craving Italian food. I had some leftover Publix 5-grain Italian bread, plenty of tomato sauce (I buy it in bulk from Costco)and then I went back to Publix to pick up some fresh basil, feta cheese (pasteurized since I'm pregnant), spring salad mix, and some other goodies.

This was a really quick and yummy dinner to throw together.

Baked Feta in Tomato Sauce

Prepared tomato sauce (I used a little over half a 14 oz can)
Fresh basil, torn into small pieces (2-3 large leaves or equivalent in small leaves)
Red pepper flakes, 1/4-1 tsp depending on how hot you like it
Minced garlic, about 1/2 tsp
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Small chunks of feta cheese, 1/4-1/2 cup
Extra-virgin olive oil, a tsp or so

Crusty bread for dipping

Preheat oven to between 375 to 400 degrees F or use a toaster oven like I did (no preheating required).

Place the first five ingredients in an oven-proof casserole dish (mine was about 3 1/2 to 4 inches wide) and stir. Place feta cheese on top of tomato sauce and drizzle with olive oil. Heat in the oven for 15 or 20 minutes. Stir and enjoy with pieces of crusty bread (I like to toast my bread for a few minutes on each side first).

This is one of my favorite ways to dress spring salad greens. The vinaigrette recipe below is appoximately what I made last night and was enough to dress 2-4 salads. You don't need much...just enough to lightly coat your greens.

Simple Green Salad

Juice of one large lemon
1-2 tsp red wine vinegar
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Extra virgin olive oil, about 2 tsp
Spring salad mix
Freshly shaved parmesan cheese

Combine the first three ingredients in a small bowl (I usually mix my dressings in my 2-cup glass Pyrex measuring cup). While you whisk the first three ingredients, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. This is your vinagrette.

Top your spring salad mix with the vinaigrette, capers, and some freshly shaved parmesan cheese. Simple but delicious.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Alive and Kicking

I know that Baby Luke is an active little fellow because my lower abdomen gets real tight and a bit uncomfortable at times due to him growing and turning about. But night before last I felt him kick for the first time. I was in bed trying to go to sleep, but I guess he thought it was party time. He kept me awake on and off all night long and into the morning kicking. The kicks can be felt from outside my belly but they are real subtle. They feel to me like a really soft thump or flutter, almost like really strong, rogue heartbeat. I have continued to feel them on and off throughout the day and night since that first night. I guess I will eventually get used to them and hopefully they won't keep me up at night. They are reassuring, though.

As you can see from the picture above, I definitely have a baby bump now. I wear it proudly. Here I'm sporting my favorite pair of maternity jeans and favorite black tank. I love the high stretchy band on these jeans. I'm not going to want to quit wearing them after I have the baby...they are so comfortable.

This whole thing has been getting very real lately. I woke up this morning feeling a bit stressed out. I have so much to do before Luke gets here and I've got school work to do at the same time. It's only one class, but man do I not feel like thinking about that right now. I think I'll take Fall semester off. Everything was made even more real yesterday when I made some purchases from Etsy for Luke's room. Here's what I bought:

How cute are these brass owls that I got from Bloomdar Vintage? The handles on Luke's dresser and chest are brass, so the owls will go very nicely sitting on top of one of these.

The perfect first stuffed animal for Luke's nursery because it has both the fabrics I'm using in the room. It can double as a pillow and is from Bellamina. She also makes bookends and doorstops, but I'm trying not to get too carried away.

Every room needs storage, right? These fabric bins are so adorable and can hold toys, diapers, or whatever else I need them to. I purchased them from Baffin Bags.

I decided to choose the chevron blanket from Urban Tot that was featured in my last post. I just love this fabric. The reverse side will be a soft, fluffy fabric that is cream in color.

I fabric store in Fayetteville, TN (about 45 minutes from my house) has ordered the owl fabric and it will be in mid-to late July and I'm waiting for the chevron fabric to come back in stock from an online seller so that I can make a bed skirt and curtains from it. I've still got to get in that room and clear it out before I can turn it into a cute nursery. But first I've got to study...I've got a test to take by Monday.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Boy, Oh Boy!

We are having a boy!

During the ultrasound yesterday Baby Luke was quite an active little guy. He was rolling and flipping and moving his arms about, and he flashed us several times. I am relieved to finally know the sex and to learn that he is developing normally. I am almost in my twentieth week but Baby Luke is measuring a week or so ahead.

Now that I know he is a he, I can get serious about designing the nursery. I have decided to start over and put the vintage fabrics I have been collecting into storage. If I ever decide to have another baby and it happens to be a girl, I'll pull them out and create the nursery I initially envisioned.

I am still sticking with a woodland theme and I'm also going to keep a color palette that is gender neutral and very colorful. I have found some cute Robert Kaufman fabrics created by designer Ann Kelle that I would like to use and have included pics of them below. I just love the cute owls and the colors.

I love the colors in these fabrics. I really like the turquoise and orange, but that is too close to orange and blue and we are a crimson and white household. I think I'll pull out the turquoise, red, yellow, and brown to feature in the nursery. Pretty much the same colors I was going to use before.

I already found some really cute items on Etsy that are made with these fabrics.

This rag quilt from Humble Pie Originals is just perfect. I love it!

I am just loving the chevron pattern. This is such a cute blanket from Urban Tot.

A boppy cover and mobile from Snowflake Crafts. The mobile is part of a set that includes a quilt, pillow, and crib skirt. I do want to have a crib skirt made...probably out of the chevron fabric. This boppy cover has minky fabric in brown on the reverse side.

Check out this great mega set! Humble Pie Originals makes this as well.

This sensory toy/lovey is made by MB Designs. This is so colorful and it proves that a wide range of fabrics and textures will work wonderfully with these three Robert Kaufman fabrics.

Now I just have to track down the fabrics to purchase them and find someone to sew some stuff for me. That is if I stick with this theme. I'm really loving it right now, though.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Baby Shower Idea

My best friend Jennifer visited me this weekend and was such a big help. She did the aisle-by-aisle thing with me at Babies R Us so Lee wouldn't have to, went with me to Motherhood Maternity to get some more clothes, helped me organize and determine what I still need to add to my baby registries, and she helped me clean out the master bedroom. This last one was a tough chore for me to do by myself, but now that it's done I feel that I can begin to tackle the rest of the house.

Jennifer is also helping to throw one of my baby showers (looks like there might be 3 or 4), and she remembered me telling her way back when about a cool idea I got from a blog...I think it was the Naughty Secretary Club blog. The idea was to have shower attendees help decorate onesies for the baby. Jennifer went ahead and brought me some craft paint and brushes that she had, but she also brought me some canvases in smaller sizes like 8x10 that she also had no need for anymore. The light bulb went off in my head...instead of decorating onesies, my shower guests could help create artwork for the baby's room.

So, I have another item to put on my before-baby-gets-here to-do list. I will come up with a design to put on several of the canvases (I'm thinking of a cohesive grouping of some sort that incorporates woodland critters), draw it on each canvas, and then at my showers my guests will all get to pick up a brush and some paint and contribute to the artwork. I love this idea. I really wanted some activity for my showers, but I'm not that big into the more common shower games, especially the one where chocolate is melted into diapers. I already told some people that if that occurs I'll leave my own shower. Gotta draw the line somewhere.

Now I just have to keep cleaning and organizing the house so I can make a space to start creating the design for the nursery art. And, I need to wait until a week from today when I hopefully find out the sex of the baby before I start getting too carried away with the design plan and artwork...wait, too late for that :)

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Hey Jude, I Love Your Room

This is a nursery like no other. It is full of vintage goodness and designer flair. It looks really high-end, but it was done on a $1000 budget and most of the projects were DIY. The colors are so 60's and 70's and it is filled with vintage furniture, but it looks amazingly modern. A job well done to this family.

I found this room this morning on HGTV's Rate My Space. I've been having second thoughts this weekend about the design plan for my baby's nursery, so I decided I'd browse around Rate My Space for some inspiration. Specifically, I'm worried that the vintage fabrics I have been collecting are more on the girly side and may not work as well in a boy's room. I only have a little over a week until we hopefully find out the sex of the baby, so I should just settle down and wait until then to start worrying about the design plan that I've been putting together for over a year. But, I can't help myself.

I love, love, love the wall art. This is totally a project I could start and actually finish. I don't know that this fits in well with my nursery theme, but I'm thinking I could do a project like this for the living room using our last name.

The details and accessories in this room are fabulous, especially the pillow. To see more views of this room go here.

I do wonder how this room will look when it begins to fill up with a hodge-podge of toys and other baby and kid-related items, but I am still totally in awe and will use the great ideas I see in this room as inspiration for other rooms in my house.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Nesting Bug

I've got my appetite back and some energy back and now I'm getting the nesting bug. My desire to nest spans the whole house. It is not confined to the nursery. Right now I'm focused on the living room. I don't really want to clean and organize, which is the main priority right now, but I want to decorate.

This living room seen here.

I always feel at war with my living room. The main problem is space planning. I have a few things in the room that I like but it still needs a lot of work. One thing I'm obsessed with right now is putting things on the walls like photographs and artwork. If you have ever been to my house you may have been surprised by the very blank walls. The only thing on the living room wall currently is a 2010 calendar purchased in Italy that is still on the month of May (Maggio in Italian). Lee and I had beautiful photos of us made recently, but I need to order the prints and figure out how I want to display them.

This room found here. It's a Pottery Barn room.

Another Pottery Barn room seen here.

I like lots of different design styles, but I think I feel most at home with a cottage or country feel. I like a lot of Pottery Barn rooms as well. The rooms in this blog post represent the feel I want in my living room.

A Florida beach house seen here.