Sunday, August 28, 2016

Baby girl's curtains

 I searched and searched for the curtains I wanted for our little Stella's room. I could not believe how freaking expensive curtains are!  So I went on the quest to make my own!  I love how they turned out and thought I would share how to make them in case you want them cheaper too!

I started with purchasing a drop cloth that was more than large enough to make 2 panels to cover my windows. I also made sure to measure to the floor as that is how long I wanted them.  I bought this drop cloth from Home Depot.

I then cut the drop cloth in half to be the 2 panels. I made it so when they were pulled closed they lay flat across my window.

I then cut them to the right height.  I realized I didnt want them to bunch up so closely by just sewing a gusset so I had to re-cut them shorter as I am going to make tabs for them to hang on.  I hemmed all sides of the two curtain panels.

The tabs were cut from the extra fabric.  I cut them 3 inches wide by 6 inches long (but folded in half they would be 3 across and 3 down when hanging.

I then measured out the tabs so they were evenly spaced (when curtain is pulled tightly closed it covers window flat.

I then pinned the tabs in place on the back side of the curtains and sewed one stitch across the top making sure the open ends of the folded fabric were facing the curtain panel.  I did not saw yet.

I then took some burlap ribbon (purchased at Hobby Lobby in the floral department).

I flipped my curtain panel over so the tabs are on the other side, and pinned the burlap ribbon to the panel, making sure the top edge was flush with the top of the curtain panel.

Now I sewed the burlap ribbon and the tabs on at the same time.

I did a second stitch across the bottom of the burlap ribbon to hold it in place.

I then took the "lace" I bought and centered it on the burlap ribbon.  I pinned this ribbon on top of the burlap and then stitched the ribbon on top and bottom.

I then strung the curtain rod through the curtain tabs and they were done.

My mother-in-law purchased the rose garland from a party store for my bridal party and thought it would be a great fit on top of the curtains.  I simply draped the garland (loop on the ends through rod and then center on the ribbon.

When the curtains are closed, they are spaced on the curtains, when they are opened the flowers remain in place.

I simply LOVE how they turned out.  Rustic, dainty.  Perfect for my little girls room!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Nolan is Two-dles!!

It is hard to believe my baby boy is 2!

Likes: Mickey, Trains, Trucks, letters, numbers, and toy food. He LOVES jumping!

Dislikes: taking pictures, having to hold his sister, being told what to do, made to stay still.

Eats: Not a very picky eater, though he does not like skins/peels. He loves pickles (insides) and Tomatoes (peels skin off).  He loves milk (whole) which we are now switching to what we drink.

Sleep: Consistently sleeps through the night, but still taking 1-2 hours to go down for nap or bed.  We are playing with bed time and nap time a bit to try and shorten that, but he does get the recommended total hours of sleep (12-14 hours) so we can't complain to much!

Size/Health: He is 26.2 lbs (43%) 33.5 in tall (19%) and head size is 47.7 cm (34%).  He is a little peanut but growing perfectly on his curve so he is a healthy little boy! Belly button is still herniated, but since it is still soft and not bothering him it is cosmetic and we are leaving it for another year (and even in a year a surgeon may say leave it).  He just lost a toe nail from hand foot mouth he had almost 2 months ago!  Doesn't seem to bother him though!

Knows: He can count 1-13, sometimes skipping order.  He is starting to do it 1 to 1.  He knows most the letters in his name.  He knows some shapes, though we are still working on it.  He knows some colors but insists on saying red when he points to his wall and there never was or will be red, haha.  He knows quite a few words and is beginning to speak in simple sentences.  Here ya go, mama! was one of his longest (handing me the remote).  He is definitely starting to string 2 words together.

Potty: He has sat on the potty after nap almost every day and then before bed.  He has coincidentally gone a couple times with a big celebration but not consistent yet.  He isn't doing much, but at least he isn't afraid!
We celebrated with my family the Tuesday before his birthday since we were going to be going out of town for his birthday.  It was a low key birthday party at our house with Papa Murphy's Pizza we arranged into a Mickey, a double layer cake and cupcakes I made, and a few decorations!  He had a great time!

Nolan got fish from grandma and some trucks and cars from his uncles.  He is in heaven!

We celebrated Nolan's birthday with his friend on his birthday while we were staying at Baraboo Hills Campground.  Nolan woke up to balloons in his pack and play! He loved it!
Before the party, we had fun camping!  Nolan got to ride the double bike that Ellie and Logan rented!  He had so much fun, that the insisted on riding with them to return it because he just wasn't done!
We used the same decorations.  Ordered the cake from Walmart while we were already down in Baraboo so we didn't have to travel 2 hours with a cake, and all the favors (cups, straws, expanding washcloths) were from the Dollar Tree.

For gifts, Nolan got some really cool tractors, a BBQ set, and some letter and number magnets.  Literally 2 hours before that I had pointed to a small bike sitting against a tree and told Alex that was what I was looking for for Nolan.  A complete stranger/neighbor came over with the bike and said her grandson out grew it and she was wondering if any of the 7 kids under 4 there would want it.  We told her we would love it as it was Nolan's birthday and exactly what we were looking for!  He was so excited!  We bought training wheels when we got home and he is loving it!

We celebrated with Alex's family on Monday after we got home.  We, again, re-used decorations, Grandma Katy made party hats with Mickey duck tape, and she picked up cupcakes from the Piggly Wiggly in Little Chute based on a Pinterest picture.
Nolan got a lot of great presents that he loves!  A wheel barrow, a Mickey ball (his Mousekeball), a puzzle with his name, a puzzle with fine motor skills, and an easel.

Nolan also got a card from Grandpa Chew.  I wanted him to send a video saying thank you.  He said, "Thank you, Your Welcome!" haha well he knows, we are just working on it!

Photography: Mommy & EllieFay Photography & Design
Shirt: Etsy MHSwankDesigns
Banner: Etsy SassySeedling
Candle: Etsy LilMonkeyStitchesWV
Circle Cake: Siraya Original ;)
Mickey Driving Cake: Walmart
Mickey Cupcake (red): Piggly Wiggly Little Chute
Favors/Mickey Straws: Dollar tree

Not as large as his first birthday mustache bash!, but we had a lot of fun!

Monday, August 15, 2016

The Puggle and the Chocolate Paste.....

On Saturday I managed took both kids to Target to get cake mix to make Nolan's family birthday cake and another birthday party gift.  Then I took both kids (by stroller, it was only 3 houses down) to the birthday party by myself. It was another one of those days where I felt like super mom.  Alex met me there and we played for a little longer.  Then we walked mom fail.

Now, if you know anything about the puggle breed you know that they pretty much are food hounds.  They want food, need food, find food.  We have had this puggle for 5 years and know he can catch food out of your hand or off the counter before it hits the floor.  He's been known to find that half eaten granola bar in your school bag or the kids snack cups.  That being said, this was a first.

We came home at bedtime.  Alex took Nolan up stairs, and I set Stella's carseat on the coffee table to unbuckle her.  I looked up and all I could manage to yell out was "oh my f***ing gosh!"  Alex comes running down the stairs to see what was wrong.  With wide eyes I turn and point at my living room.  Pudge the Puggle managed to rip through the bottom of a target bag, through the cardboard box, and through the plastic of the cake mix and managed to lick it up (creating a chocolate paste on my white carpet) 4 freaking locations across my carpet.  There was chocolate paste on the hangers of clothes, on the clothes I bought for gifts, on books, and on the floor.

This photo is after Alex had gone over it more than once with the vacuum. It then needed to be spot treated. Then I went over it with the carpet shampooer at least 5 times and finally at 9:30 at night my floor was clean again.  Dumb puggle is lucky he's cute...and our first born.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

I love you little butt head, but GO TO BED!

Nolan has always been a good sleeper (with the exception of phases/sickness).  Started sleeping through the night at 8 weeks.  Would go to bed rather easy, nurse and then sleep. Since he was a year it was put him in there, he would roll a bit and then go out.  Easy peasy.

Now we are 2 weeks before his 2nd birthday and the little butt head still goes to bed like a champ-- just takes 2 hours to get there!  We do his usual routine, try the potty (not happening, but may as well try!), brush our teeth (2 year molar are coming in), jammies, zippy, books, bed.  He will lay there and be as sweet as can be....lay there, ny ny mama, ny ny daddy.  Then the door closes.  

Boom boom boom, he is kicking the wall (not in a sassy way but in a rhythmic kind of way), squeak squeak squeak he is jumping on the bed.   We get down stairs, turn on the video monitor. Pillow goes flying from one end to the other, stuffed animals go flying to the pillow.  He just trust fell onto the pile.  Oh look! they are back to where they started.  Squeak squeak squeak, trust fall!  **Mommy or daddy get on the mic button, "Nolan, go to bed!"  Trust fall!  All is silent he is laying there....quiet.  Been there 5 minutes, maybe he's asleep.  Eyes are blinking slower, sloooower, slooooooooower. Eureka! He's asleep!...........Barrel roll! Squeak squeak squeak.  Flying animals, flying pillow, squeak squeak squeak, Trust fall!  Is he laughing at himself right now?!  The kid is literally keeping himself awake on purpose.  

Repeat 4-5 times....its been 2 hours.....oh look.  He is finally asleep! (for the next 8 hours).  Nap time, repeat.  

I am at a loss!  How to you MAKE a kid go to sleep?!?!  Especially considering when he does finally go down, he sleeps so well!

Now add in he is in a pack n play at our Gloudemans family vacation.  Same routine, but this time, OH CRAP!  He just went over the side of the pack n play!  Now he is a boy on the loose!  **Mommy or daddy get on the mic button, "Nolan, go to bed!"  Trust fall--on the floor.  **mommy: Face palm.

Luckily when we got home he has not connected crib and pack n play and the ability to get out.  We are going with our friends to a cabin for his birthday (Please stay tuned for a post of going to a cabin with a 11 week old and 2 year old birthday boy in an equinox--entertainment to be had Im sure).  Don't really want to do a toddler bed transition before a where would he go on vacation?  Plus, the top of the pack n play is at the exact height of the bed so if we put him in the bed he was just as likely to fall, only in his sleep.  Fingers crossed we make it through the next week with him in the crib, in the pack n play for the trip and we will transition to toddler bed when he is 2..... Which I am sure will entail a funny post or 2.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

But my baby is blue...

I am attempting something new, more little posts than really long ones.

Back to Stella's baptism day.....
July 24, 2016
Stella's baptism was pretty much 100% humidity.  The temperature wasn't bad but humidity was killer.  She was pretty uncomfortable all day because of the heat.  Once the party was done, we took her to her nice air conditioned room.  She had a nice 3 hour nap.  She was normal when she woke up and then we went about business as normal.  Before bed, we gave her a bath.  A normal warm bath.  I was drying her off and I noticed, my baby was blue/purple.  Not above her neck and not below her belly button.  Her torso and arms, thats it.

I instantly ran through triage.  Is she breathing? Yes.  Are her lips blue? No.  Is her skin cold? No.  Did she wear something blue to rub off on her skin? No, it was baptism day, she wore white.  Is she in distress? No--actually she is laughing and cooing.  When I touch it, it turns white and then goes blue again.  What.the.heck.

I called the on call nurse.  I wasn't panicked but I really felt I needed to discuss this with a medical professional.  She seemed perplexed.  She asked the same questions I did above.  Had me take her temp, maybe her internal temp was off.  Rectal temp was 98.6* on the head. She asked if it was the lighting, I took her to every room, natural light, florescent light, warm white lightbulbs....still blue.  At this point I am pretty sure the nurse is googling.  Everything came up with what we already checked out to be fine.....  but my baby is blue!

We were on the phone about 25 minutes and in that time it began to fade.   The nurse was relieved and basically said she was putting it in her file and to watch it closely.  Never happened again.

Seriously, if it is weird and doesnt have a medical explanation, its going to happen to our family!

Friday, August 12, 2016


Keeping to our usual lifestyle, taking the kids out to eat for lunch on a Tuesday.  Alex and I love our Tuesdays together, somewhat makes up for the every other weekend he is working.
I wanted to hit up the Once Upon a Child grab bag sale but Alex was working.  I took both kids.  Nolan was beyond entertained with this toy and sat in that cart for almost 2 hours!  I wore (and nursed) Stella in the Ergo.  I got over $300 worth of stuff for $15!!  
Afterwards it was Noodles for Ashley's birthday lunch.  I brought both kids and Stella smiled like a little angel the whole time.  Nolan was a good boy even when he went table to table knocking of table tents, he also put them back.  Days like today, they make me feel like I can do ANYTHING as a mom of 2.

She is just so darn happy and easy to make her smile!

The following day was Kinley's baptism.  Alex was still working so I took the 2 by myself.  Though I had friends help, it was incredibly difficult.  Nolan cried, yelled, and was just a plain stinker the whole time.  Stella slept through mass.  Then I nursed her like normal right after (while Ashley ran laps around the pew with Nolan as her little Emily sat
angelically with her daddy. Then came picture time.  Nolan decided to take off behind the alter.  Ellie caught him and then Stella decided to be all sorts of upset.  Phew my kids were hot messes!  Then we went to lunch at the Hennigs where Nolan refused to leave the sandbox alone even with Tyler sitting on it....and then at lunch time stole Mady's food right off her plate.  Nolan and Maverick decided to to sit in the car even though it was covered in plywood (and then they got mad when they bumped their heads).  Ellie was taking pictures and got some pretty good ones considering, but Nolan has a new style of posing for pictures (hiding his eyes).  Finally, it was nap time and we bailed.  It is days like today that makes me feel like I can not do ANYTHING right as a mom of 2.

Little Miss Stella is outgrowing her bassinet, quickly!  Woke up and she was turned sideways.  I laughed and took a picture...then she propped her legs up....what a stinker!

Slowly (VERY SLOWLY) Nolan is getting better at holding, being with, and not crying and rolling away when we put Stella by him.  Mikey was on and as long as I wasn't blocking it I was doing ok.

Nolan is quite the goof and he may get much of his acrobatic skills from his mommy.  This is how he watches Mickey Mouse.....

  My dad and brother visiting from South Carolina.  We haven't seen my dad since he met Nolan a year and a half ago, and we haven't seen my brother Nate since our wedding 5 years ago.  It was so nice to see them and totally surreal seeing them hold my babies!  We took the kids swimming in the same pool we swam in every time my dad visited.  It was really great to see them and build more memories in the same hotel!

All 3 of his grandkids
All the Chew boys
ur attempt at a family photo

On Sunday July 24, 2016, sweet Stella Rose was baptized into the Catholic Church at St. John Church in Little Chute.  Nolan did great through mass and spent most of the baptism running in the gathering space.  He greeted the entire congregation with a HIIIIIIII when he came in.  Took an adorable family photo and was off again.  Photos following the baptism weren't so hot....but we still managed to get a couple good ones.


Our family photos keep getting bigger and bigger!

Look how different these 2 look!  Nolan's baptism was 1 week after 2 months and Stellas was 1 week before.

We went to Packer Training camp on the Tuesday!  We had a lot of fun and it went really well with the 2 kids!  So glad we can share daddy's passion for the packers with our kids!  Nolan also adorably helps push the stroller and wanted to hold mommy's hand while helping too!



We took the kids to Chuck-E-Cheese in Green Bay for lunch following training camp.  Nolan was in heaven and just running in circles the first 15 minutes just looking at everything!  In our time there he tried about all the rides. He learned how to put the tokens into the machines, pull out tickets, and rode the merry-go-round about 15 times.  He didn't mind seeing Chuck-E-Cheese live, but taking a picture he still liked a little distance (though high fives are still ok).  Also, Nolan eats pizza but from the top down. Meat, cheese, sausage, sauce, crust.

Nolan also got to experience dippin' dots for the first time. Stella was hamming it up while we were paying for them!
Updated our garage to give it just a little face lift with a simple magnet set (one on each door) from Menards!  I am so in love!  

Appleton Kids week had a lot of free events in the area.  We took Nolan and Stella to Funset Boulevard for their free day.  It was SUPER crowded but it was fun! Nolan loved the train but only got to go once it was so packed.  We didn't even wait in line at the marry-go-round, but he also did that a million times at chuck-e-cheese the day before so we were ok with that.  He had a blast in the toddler area.  

Big girl Stella is holding her head up while in tummy time now!  She is so little I sometimes forget how old she is.  I will think wow she is doing amazing for her age---only to realize Nolan did things at the same age.  Amazing what a mom forgets between kids.
My neighbor works for the Calumet County Sheriffs Department.  With all that is going on with police officers right now, his wife, Trista, got the great idea to make some survival bags for local police departments.  We got together on a Friday night, stuffed, stapled, and grouped almost 300 bags!  The kids came along and got to play with the neighbors.  It was a lot of fun and for such a great cause!  Then the next day, I watched their kids so they could distribute to the 9 stations.  

They were here 5 minutes......

Rylee yells, "Baby cryin'!" and gives Stella a paci (Stella doesn't take paci's) but at least she smiled about it!

I turned around from the paci situation to discover Nolan as covered B in All Better band aids.

Big girl, Stella, finally slept in her bed. Slept the whole night 8-10 I woke to nurse 10-4:30 she wakes to nurse 4:45-7:30.  I love my little sleepers (please don't hate me)

Noley got a hair cut at grandma's in the garage.  Took a whole 3 minutes! Such a good boy!

Stella is 2 months! 
Likes: Sitting up to see things, swaddles, daddy and mommy making faces,  nursing/eating, looking at lights, music.

Dislikes: Being cold/hot, being hungry, being over tired.

Sleep: Sleeps through the night.  She goes down around 8 after we get Nolan in bed, we put her to bed.  Bedtime routine is jammies, Vitamin D, swaddle, nurse, in crib drowsy.  She wimpers and pumps her legs and thats how you know she is going to sleep.  She sleeps 8ish until I wake her at 10 to feed her when I go to bed.  Sometimes she doesnt fully wake up.  She usually sleeps until 4 something when she wimpers (Alex doesn't even hear it it is so faint).  I go in there and feed her and put her back down.  She then usually sleeps until 7:30ish

Eat: She is nursing on demand still but going 1.5-3 hours when she is awake (depends if it is hot, if she is tired, etc).  Nursing is going well and bottles are getting better though she hasn't had a lot.

Weight/Size: At her 2 month appointment, she finally measured at 9lbs 9oz (10%) 22.4 in (45%) and head size 14.8 in (28%).  She is a little peanut but following the curve so they are ok with her development thus far.  She is still wearing some newborn clothes but we are slowly switching over to 0-3 now.

As for a status update on her is still all here, still dark, but getting lighter!

When both Alex and I are home, we have the chance to put the kids down at the same time.  On those nights, we get to read to the kids at the same time.  Here they are reading "Thats Not My Cow," one of my Usborne Books.  Nolan loves repeating the words and touching and Stella loves the contrasting pictures.  I just love these 2 and that they enjoy reading so much!

These 2 are getting closer and closer every day.  I may be pushing her on Nolan a little bit, but he is getting sweeter and more gentle each time. When he says all done we take her away.  It is getting better.  It is slow, but getting there.

We have lots of birthday parties in the beginning of August.  Nolan is really getting better at being social and playing WITH kids, or at least doing what they are doing rather than being in an opposite location.

Layla celebrated her birthday at the splash park (while daddy was working).  Nolan was a sweet little boy this day and played well, ate well, and listened like a champ.  We learned he likes ice cream as much as birthday girl Layla!  Stella was a champ and slept the whole time!  Happy second birthday Layla!

Jaxon moved to South Carolina last year so we were very excited he was back in Wisconsin to hang out for his baseball themed birthday at his grandma and grandpa's house.  We played outside and Nolan learned how to take turns on the "tractor" and the "wagon" that attaches.  He found friend Layla to take turns with.  He did really well eating and playing.  He loved his cup cake so much he found one another kid abandoned and helped himself to 2! haha   Happy Second birthday Jaxon!

 We met some former co-workers Alissa and Renee at the park to catch up and let Renee's kids (big kids) play with mine and Alissa's (2 and under).  So precious!

We have been going to Grandpa's cottage as a family since Alex and I started dating. Hes been going up his whole life.  Grandpa has officially sold his cottage with a closing date of the end of the month so we had our last trip up to Lasata, place of peace.  We celebrated with a lot of family time, firsts for the kids, and lasts for the adults.  Alex jumped off the dock again to feel 11 again, and we swam, played on the raft and such while the kids were napping.  It is an end of an era but not the end of the cousins bonding.  It was a really great week.

Nolan went tubing behind the fast boat with daddy!  He did great on the tube but once it stopped I think he had time to process and he cried a little bit. We tried the next day and it was fine until the boat took off.  Glad we tried it but cant say he is ready!

I was trying to show Nolan how messy he was.  He looks into the camera and says, "Im Messy" I then tried to catch that on camera and all I could get was him making these faces...hilarious!

We tried multiple times to get a good photo of the 3 Gloudemans Grandkids...this is what we ended up with....

 This little boy has chocolate on his face because he went pee pee on the potty!  2 days in a row after nap!  Not really pushing the potty thing but giving him opportunities and it is going well so far!

 Stella is loving the Bumbo!  All these faces are so darn cute and she is just so darn big I couldn't pick!

This next week brings Nolan's birthday parties, friends annual camping trip, Nolan's Birthday, Stella turning 3 months, and Labor day weekend!  I keep thinking these posts will get smaller, but they dont!  Maybe in the winter?