Friday, June 18

Baby Shower and 28 Week Check-Up

Yesterday evening my co-workers threw a wonderful shower for me and baby Ella Kate. My boss was kind enough to host the shower at her beautiful log cabin (which I wish I would have gotten a picture of) and my friend Aubrey helped her to organize.

Here are just a few pictures from the event.
They felt that the bakers at Wal-Mart were a little confused about the gender of Ella Kate and may have thought that she was a boy.
They made me pose with the cake. Guess we could use this as my 28 week belly picture!
We played one game during the shower which was called the right/left game. Aubrey read a story and every time right or left was said we had to pass the baby bottles full of candy. It was a really cute game and we almost had a few fights over those bottles of candy! You know women and their sugar.
Cutting the cake... which was delicious! Luckily it was not multiple layers cause I am the worst cake cutter known to man!
My co-workers are wonderful and spoiled Ms. Ella Kate rotten! She has lots of aunties at the Health Center and they might be as excited about her arrival as we are!
And here I am with my wonderful hostesses, Barbara my boss on the left and Aubrey one of my closest friends on the right. They did such a great job with the shower! Thank ya'll so much!

This morning was also my 28 week check up with the doctor and my glucose screening. Personally I don't know what all of the fuss was about the drink you have to drink for the screening cause really it didn't taste that bad. Then again it could of been that they made me fast and didn't let me have anything to drink before that could have made it taste better! I will have the blood work back from that probably on Tuesday so be praying for a clean screening!
The doctor said everything sounded fine with the baby and my only restrictions now are no heavy lifting and no strenuous activity. I think I can handle that! I go back in 2 weeks (though really its about 2 1/2) for another ultrasound and a check up. I have officially started the 2 week rotation of appointments which just means things are getting closer!!!

Monday, June 14

The Master Bedroom

The next stop on the remodeling tour is our master bedroom. At our rental house and also our house in Baton Rouge, we had absolutely no space. That is not the case at the new house! We love the size of our master. It is just the right size to fit all of our furniture and still have plenty of space to move around.
I realized when starting this post that I only took 1 before picture of the master. Here it is in all of it's 1970s glory. Walls were a strange off white color and it had the same yellow-ish carpet as the rest of the house.
The first thing the guys did (my wonderful labor force Keith and his dad, Mike) was to hang crown molding. We wanted the master to stand out from the other bedrooms and distinguish it as the master and we figured the crown would do that.
Here is the crown finished on one wall. It was definitely a frustrating experience as this was the first room that it was hung in and getting those corners just right wasn't too easy.
Paint went on the walls next. We used the same paint that is painted on the top portion of the hallway. It is a beige-gray. We got it at Lowe's but I don't have the name around here right now. As you can also see the carpet is now all torn up. We had all of the carpet in the house removed and replaced with a specked frise (yeah I am sure my spelling is so wrong on that). We really like the carpet and it has a great pad under it that really adds some cushion to it.
Here is the wall that is between the door from the hall and the door from our bath. Just another little shot to see the work. We have also replaced all of the outlets and lightswitches as everything was off white and we wanted pure white.
And here it is all completed with our furniture in it. With the furniture in you can see that the walls are a little darker than in the other pictures. We have never had much on our walls in our bedroom since we got this furniture (part of the Cindy Crawford collection from Rooms to Go) because the bed is pretty high and has a leather backing and the other pieces we have also take up quite a bit of wall space. We do have one iron cross that needs to go up on the wall, but currently it just sits on the ground next to where it should go. The cross weighs a ton and Keith has to put anchors in the wall to hang it which just is not at the top of the priority list yet.
I still love our bedding which we got for our wedding. It is Nautica and from Bed Bath and Beyond. I just love the chocolate brown, blue, and ivory colors on it and though it is plain, it is so us. And yes there are like 15 pillows on the bed! What is sad is all the ones behind the decorative ones are in the bed with us at night. I currently require 2 regular pillows and a body pillow to sleep. Really I am surprised there is room for Keith in the bed at all!
Here you can see the cross I was talking about above. We got it in Canton at First Monday when we first moved to Tyler and we both love it. It even has fleur de lis' on it to show off our love of Louisiana. We are still planning on replacing the doors to all the bedrooms along with their handles but haven't gotten around to it yet. All of the doors are OLD and have gold handles and soon they will not match anything as the molding will all be white. But all in time!
Here is one last view of the bedroom. We have replaced the blinds in this room with 2 inch white faux wood blinds (which really keep the sun out). I am still deciding about curtains but I figure one day (probably right before we move or something) I will have all of those finishing touches done, but right now its the remodel that our money is concentrated on!
Hope you enjoyed the tour of our Master Bedroom... we are finishing the nursery this weekend, so that will be our next stop! That will probably be the first room in the whole house that actually gets things hung on the walls.

Friday, June 11

Baby Update... 27 Weeks

Well today I had a follow up ultrasound after the episode at 25 weeks. Here are just a few pictures.
This is me this morning taking my 27 week picture. I would like to say that currently I have only gained 11 lbs (which my doctor did get on me just a little... but hey when you eat like a 300 lb man and only gain 11 lbs even when stuck on the couch for 10 days there isn't much you can do... I like to say VERY ACTIVE Ella Kate burns off all my calories) and I am pretty impressed that I have gained most of it in the front. I really thought I was just going to blow up like a balloon so thank god for the good genes!
And here is my beautiful baby girl's profile. It took some major coaxing from the ultrasound tech to get her to move her hands away from her face, but we finally got lucky! Besides her 11 week ultrasound, this is the only profile picture we have. She is pretty camera shy! I have to say that we are pretty sure she has Keith's button nose (Lucky Girl)! She was even puckering her lips while we watched her.
These pictures arent very clear, but they are frontals of her face. You can see the eye sockets and her nose and you can kind of make out that her hands are resting under her chin. She just loves those hands all on her face!

The ultrasound tech said everything looked good. I had plenty of amniotic fluid and babies growth looks great. Her head is a little small for her gestational age (though if you go by my original due date that we calculated of Sept 11th it is actually right on) and her arms, legs, and spine are about a week ahead of her age (though that doesn't surprise anyone). No wonder they had a hard time figuring a due date! Sounds like if she keeps this up she will come out a lot like I did as a baby... long and lean and all fingers and toes!
I have one more follow up appointment next Friday when they will also do my glucose screening. If all is well at that check up then the Dr. will just let me move forward as normal so keep your fingers crossed. I also have my first baby shower next Thursday and I am sooo excited!

Thursday, June 10

The Entry and Hallway... Before, During, and After

So our next stop on the tour of Underwood Remodeling 2010 is the entryway and hallway.
As you can see, there was some great wallpaper that ran through the entry and down the hallway that was classic 1970's! As I mentioned in the Living Room post, they don't make things like they did in 1970 and that stuff was a beast to get off the walls!
And here is the entry in all of it's wallpaperless glory! Unfortunately when the wallpaper was hung they had not prepped the walls making it basically rip down drywall when pulled down.

See all that white on the walls... yeah that was the patchwork that had to be done from the ripped down drywall! Such a pain! As you can also see here, the floor before the new tile was laid. Unfortunately that linoleum had been there so long it had caused some damage to the floors and made it a pain to get prepped for tile and it set us back a week on our progress. Luckily they were finally able to get it laid and we have no problems with our new tile.

And here is the hall officially prepped and primed. We ended up doing a texture on the wall to hide some of the blemishes from the remains of the wallpaper damage. I didn't know if I would like it but really it came out great and adds a little character! I think we are going to do the same in the kitchen where there was not only 1 layer of wallpaper but 2!

And here is our finished product! We have done the bottom of wall where some paneling did remain the same gray/beige as the living room and the upper half a darker beige. The two tone looks really good especially with the white crown molding, chair rail, and baseboards. I think it makes the house look a little more sophisticated than it really is :)!
Here you can see the two tone just a little better. We still of course have decor to put up (I am going to do an entry table and large mirror on this wall and I think a picture frame collage through the hall - have to have somewhere to put up all those pictures of Ella Kate!). We will be replacing the front door with one that has a large window on it to let in more light and make the area feel more inviting!

Next time... The Master!

Monday, June 7

Ella Kate's Room! The Inspiration...

So as I mentioned, Keith has been hard at work prepping Ella Kate's room for her arrival and I just wanted to share a bit of the inspiration before I show finished product pictures (whenever it is done!).
Here is the furniture we went with. It is made by Creations baby furniture and is the style Nouvella and we purchased it in their Autumn Cherry. We got a great deal on it thanks to the baby boutique actually having all the pieces we wanted in stock!
Picking baby bedding was by far the hardest thing for me in the world! We ended up doing a custom bedding from Rocking Horse Designs. I used their Piper collection (pictured above) as my inspiration. I loved the fabrics of their original Piper, but it was just too much brown for me so I decided to lighten it up with more white! I love how it came out, but will have to wait to post pictures once it is on the bed.
For the walls we decided to do 3 of them a bright white, but have decided on an accent wall of Sherwin Williams Melange Green behind the crib. I figured the three walls of white would work becuase of the large furniture pieces we have and the large window in her room. I think the splash of lime on wall will work out just right!
Hanging above her crib will be a 12x36 painting of her name inspired by the fabrics from the bedding below. I had a friend from highschool do the painting and highly anticipating it's arrival. She is selling her stuff on etsy, so you can check her out here.

One last inspiration for her room came from my days in Delta Zeta. I collected so many stuffed turtles and turtle knickknacks during my four years in the sorority that I decided I should probably bring a few of them out of storage. Plus I figure the little green accents would add to the room and help to bring the green out of the bedding.
I am hoping to have the room complete within the next week or two and then I will share the completed design!

Sunday, June 6

The Nephew... almost 18 months

Of course I needed to share a few pictures of my little love... I can't believe he will be 18 months June 19th!
Think he needs a pet or what? He just loves animals! Dogs are his absolute favorite though!
He is going to break many hearts with eyes like that...
Here he is with my bro and SIL in San Antonio in March... You can get a feel for just how tall he is in this picture... only 18 months and already 36 inches! Hope he keeps that height his whole life!
Man I love that little guy!

Friday, June 4

The Livinig Room... Before, During, and After

As I said in my last post (like 2 months ago) we purchased a house in February and have been working hard to remodel it. The house was originally built in 1970 and let's just say, not much has changed from the original decorating. The house has been owned by one family since 1970 so it was in tip top shape, but really needed a lot of work and we decided it was a great idea to take on with a newborn on the way. Yeah you can call us crazy, cause we do! Luckily I have been blessed with a wonderful FIL who is a great handyman and has been doing most of the work for us.

So let me take you on a tour of where we have been and what has become of our living room.

Here is the living room in all of it's original glory. The carpet was a great yellow and all of the walls were white painted wood paneling.

The shelves and cabinents were built in and let's just say they were extremely well built! It took about 2 hours to get those down and the cabinents finally just had to be destroyed and taken out piece by piece.
And here is the fire place and the one window in the room plus another great picture of the carpet!
And construction has begun! The boys decided to pull down all of the old paneling and put up sheetrock to update the room. As you can see the paneling is down (it took quite a bit of time... they built things really well in 1970) and the carpet is up. There of course was linoleum under the carpet which just added to more demo!

And more demo! This is right before you can actually begin to see a change in the room!

The drywall went up with a little bit of work and as you can see all of the linoleum (that was classic 1970) has been pulled up. This was the first point in the project where I really felt that we were making progress. Unfortunately due to the pregnancy I was not able to do much to help which made it hard on me cause I would have loved to be able to assist, but I made one heck of a construction foreman!
And now as you can see they even put some paint on the walls! We went with a very light gray/beige to keep the room neutral and plus we could have never agreed on a color for the room. A green would have pulled too much green out of our sofa's and I would have hated that, a dark color would have made the room look small because of only having one window, and so on and so forth, so gray/beige it was!
I did let Keith have one accent wall which I have to admit looks really great! It really helps the fire place to stand out and adds a little color to that side of the room. I have to give it to the man, he is a way better decorator than me!
And here we are with a few more current pictures. You can't tell in this picture, but we have changed the color of the fire place from a yellow offwhite to the same color of the wall. The mantel is still being painted and once it is done we will be placing lots of pictures up there. We have new 20x20 tile on the floor (which is the one thing my FIL has not done in the house) and the boys added crown molding throughout.
Sorry the pictures are so dark, my camera was dead so they were taken with my Iphone. There is now furniture in the room and you can see the great crown molding. We still haven't gotten pictures on the walls as I have a few that are still being framed at Hobby Lobby. It will all come together soon enough!
And one last picture. I will put a few more up when there is a 100% completed project. We are still going to change out the back door by the fire place with a full glass one (hopefully within the next week or 2) to add more light into the room. We will also of course be adding things to the wall and a large rocker in the corner for those long nights with baby!

Thursday, June 3

Baby Update

I went to the doctor this morning and have been released from my bedrest prison. I have to take it easy through the weekend but am allowed to get up more and even run a few errands. I will go back to work on Monday and though I must still be careful I am glad to be getting out of the house!

The doctor has scheduled on ultrasound for next Friday to check my fluid levels and the baby's growth and if all checks out with that I get to go back on my normal visit schedule and will be released for normal activity. Hopefully this means that the threat of preterm labor has passed, but I am still going to do my best to be very careful and to prevent Ella Kate from coming any earlier than needed.

Mom let me go and do a little walking through Hobby Lobby today since I had some pictures that needed to be framed. I even got to sit and eat lunch at Olive Garden instead of reclined with a TV tray (that made things so much better for digestion let me just tell you!). I have a few errands to run this weekend but I plan on still doing a lot of resting to prepare for next week. It is going to be pretty hard going from watching TV all day to sitting at a desk but I don't think I will ever be so glad to get up at 5:30 and go into an office!!!

Hopefully next week I will have some new pictures of the little miss to post... Until then

Wednesday, June 2

So what's been up??

I know I promised that I would start posting more frequently, but that didn't happen because the hard drive on our laptop crashed and things have just been crazy busy! Our computer will be ready within the next week so I hope to start being better. I really want to start posting more especially as the baby is arriving to document the rest of our stroll through preparation for baby, remodeling the new house, and our new life as parents. Plus I know the grandparents will love to have somewhere they can see the little one.

So let's start with baby...

We found out on April 23, 2010 the following about baby Underwood...
So yes, it is going to be all pink and pretty around this house! We had a feeling from day one that it would be a girl, but I know Keith was holding out that it could possibly be a boy. But no, girl all the way! We have decided to name her Ella Kate Underwood and are very ready for her arrival. Ok not really ready, but are anticipating!
Here are a few pictures from our 21 week ultrasound. Unfortunately she did not cooperate much so these were the best pictures that we could get.
Lots of leg! As ecpected with me and as her mother, the girl has some legs which has made it very difficult to predict an accurate due date. And let's just say those legs are strong! I have been feeling the little one since around week 17 which is a little early for first pregnancy but with legs like that the doctor is not surprised!
And here are her feet! Both Keith and I have very long and lean feet so it's not surprising the clearest picture shewould give us was of her big old toddler size foot! As my mom said I was all fingers and toes and it looks like little Ella Kate is taking right after her momma!
So those pictures were from 5 weeks ago, so what has been going on with the pregnancy since then? Well at 25 weeks, I was admitted to Labor and Delivery for an unexpected bleed and spent 2 days in the hospital on IV and monitors. The doctor's have concern for premature labor and have also been watching me for placental abruption. I have received a round of steriod shots in case of premature labor but it looks like Ella Kate has no thoughts of coming out early. She spent those two days in the hospital trying to move away from monitors and kicking and punching as normal. There has been no contractions and no dialation which is blessing! I was placed on bedrest upon leaving the hospital and have been laid up for the past 8 days. We have made it to 26 weeks and 1 day and are just taking it one day at a time and doing our best to make sure she stays in there and we don't have any further scares. I go back to the doctor on June 3rd and we will see what the next orders are from the doctor. I am hoping to go back to work at least half days starting next week, but I will be a good patient and do as he says! Mom has been here waiting on me hand and foot and I have been doing a bit of nesting through her which has been nice. I think I have gotten more things organized from the couch than since we moved in 3 months ago!
So what has been up with the house...
Well we have new floors, some new walls, new paint, and yet so much work to still do before Ella Kate's arrival that I don't even want to think about it. Keith and his dad have been hard at work and are doing their best to get as much done as possible each time his dad visits and I know it will all get done eventually! Our entry and hall are almost complete (just need 1 more coat of paint and decor) and the living room just needs the new door and a few finishing touches of molding and or course decor. Our bedroom is all done but we have plans to add some built ins to our closet to make the most of the space. Keith is currently putting all other projects on hold though to finish the little miss's room to make sure all is ready in case of early arrival.
Well that is where we stand as of today... I am sure there is so much more in our future and I will try to keep it updated!
Also prayers please for my friend Carrie... you can visit her blog here and read about her story. She is definitely an inspiration and a beautiful writer and I am blessed to know her!