Happy Father's Day

Happy First Father's Day to my handsome husband!

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Next Craft Goal

Not that I have much time for crafting these days with a 7 month old, working full, time, and grad school, but I do still have big craft dreams! I've started to organize my projects so I can actually get some done. Rest assured I've been buying plenty of craft junk that has just been piling in my work space, but let's just add one more, shall we?

I'm obsessed with this super simple project from Mad in Crafts. I consider myself a fairly artistic person, but painting is one thing I usually fail at. My husband doesn't really even let me paint the walls, which I am totally sad about (not!). Thankfully, I think even I can handle this!

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Mikarose Giveaway!

Hey Friends!

I'm trying to get back in the swing of blogging so what better way than to tell you about a bunch of awesome giveaways I found for you! I recently discovered the blog Dandy Giveaway. Check them out! They have TONS of awesome giveaways and their contributors seems genuinely sweet.

Right now they are giving away a dress from Mikarose. Go here to enter!

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Happy Easter!

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One Month Photos

I'm trying to be really diligent about takes lots of pictures of Lorelei. We don't have many from when I was a kid and I want her to be overwhelmed with the amount of photographic evidence of her existence.

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Project Nursery

I started off with a specific vision for Lorelei's nursery and completely strayed from it, but I ended up loving the way it turned out. I really wanted teal and candy apple red, however, I soon realized it was extremely hard to find the exact colors I was envisioning. I know it is totally crappy of me not to just make everything I needed myself, but I really just didn't have time. I started a new job in May, I was still going to grad school, we had family coming to visit, 5 baby showers, and lots of home projects we needed done before Lorelei's arrival.

Below are some photos I pinned that were the most similar to what I had envisioned. I was able to find a lot of these items on Etsy, but they were out of my price range. Plus I wanted to be able to register for stuff so it would be free!

At first I really didn't want to do owls even though I love them because they are so trendy. However, I decided it was really dumb to not do something I really liked just because other people like it too. So I found this bedding set at Target that was a good starting off point for me, but I didn't want her room to be too pastel-ish.

Luckily, my awesome sister-in-law and mother-in-law were willing to make the baby a quilt that had more of the color scheme I wanted. Below is a picture of all of us at my Ohio baby shower with the beautiful quilt.

After that I really just registered and got stuff that I thought was cute and hoped it would all come together. 

My friend Heather created this adorable custom wall art in her Etsy shop Calley Flower Designs. It matched the target owl stuff perfectly!

The diaper stacker is a discontinued pattern from Babies R Us. I actually registered for this first and then they put it on clearance so I had to pick something else. You can also see the Amy Butler baby bag I made hanging up next to it. The sign above was just something my aunt sent Lorelei as a gift, but it goes pefectly. 

Here is the inside of the crib with the quilt. 

I made the curtains with some major help from Artfully Caroline. I was 9.5 months pregnant and at my whits end while trying to make these babies. They only ended up ruffled because I totally cut them all the wrong length. Giant craft fail. The cubbies are just from Ikea. Sorry the light is so terrible!

This vinyl wall decal was a gift from my friend Dianna over at Craft A Spell

I'm totally going to hang something else here, but I'm still trying to figure that out. Maybe a vinyl monogram?

My sister-in-law even made me this cool runner so I won't scratch the top of the dresser. 

All in all, I really like her room. There are a few things still in progress, but at least it was done before she got here! I really liked how I was able to incorporate all kinds of different colors, but it still kind of goes together. Sometimes I get really hung up on stuff matching the right shade. Hopefully she will be able to grow with this room and I won't be redoing it in 3 years!

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Baby Buying Guide: What I actually Used the First Few Weeks

I know there are a million of these out there, but I wanted to share what actually worked for us. I know during my first month of mommyhood, I was desperate to figure out what would work for Lorelei so maybe this will help another new mom.

1. Halo Sleepsack Swaddles: The nurses in the hospital were like professional swaddlers and no matter what I couldn't do it as well as them. I especially couldn't do it in a haze at 2am. These things were a lifesaver and Lorelei couldn't break out. As a tip, all babies hate being swaddled, but stick with it if you think it's right for your baby. Lorelei was constantly waking herself up by slapping herself in the face and it was driving me crazy. These things bought me many hours of sleep in those early days.

2. White Noise Machine: This was another awesome sleep saver. Sometimes Lorelei would wake and I would turn it on and it would put her right back to sleep. Then I was like why in the world don't I just turn it on and leave it on? You can even use a basic box fan to save some dough. I was not that smart and I bought this Aiden and Anais contraption. It's actually pretty cool because you can use it to record your breastfeeding, it turns colors if the room is too hot or too cold, and plays lullabies and white noise. Plus it actually looks cute in your baby's room.

3. Pampers Swaddlers: These are the best diapers ever! I know they are more expensive, but if you can spring for them! At least, until your baby's poo is a little less runny. If these are too rich for your blood, Target brand are the next best thing. For some reason even the regular Pampers kind of sucked for us. They were too low in the back and she would blow out right up her back all the time. To save money you can use www.Diapers.com and get cash back. You can also do their rewards program.

4. Lots of Nightgowns and Sleep Bras: Those first few weeks, you will be a breastfeeding machine. Plus in my case, I was super sore from the c-section. I loved all my nursing nightgowns that made it so easy to feed Lorelei. Plus I leaked a lot at first and I really needed to wear some type of bra all the time with nursing pads to avoid drenching my clothes.

5. Hand Sanitizer: The flu is crazy this year. My pediatrician recommended that we get those little ones and hook them to the car carrier, baby bag, and stroller. So Little Lorelei's carseat carrier has a bottle of sanitizer hanging from it. You better believe when people try to touch her I stop them and make her use it. I then tell them thank you for respecting my baby's developing immune system. I'm for real people. lol. 

So pretty much I'm saying keep your baby clean and get them to sleep! All you really do is feed them, try and sleep, and protect them from disease in those first few weeks. Hope this helps!

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I'm So Crafty, I Make People!

So In the Loop has been on a long LOOOONG hiatus, but I've have a totally legit excuse. I was busy making this gorgeous baby!

Meet Lorelei Grace, the littlest Loop! Lorelei made her appearance on October 25 at 10:30am on the nose. Not only that, but her real life BFF showed up the same day!

You may know Amie over at Kitty Cats and Airplanes and I are real life friends who met in Blogland. Shockingly, she and I got pregnant with only weeks of each other. We were due three weeks apart, but since Lorelei wanted to stay in my belly FOREVER and Lily couldn't wait to have her first playdate they ended up being born on the same day only hours apart. You can read Lily's birth story here.

Lorelei's story is a long one. Mainly because it lasted three weeks! My due date was always bopping around according to my doctors. I stand by my claim she was due October 9. They say it was the 17th. I started having regular contractions on the 7th and ended up going to the hospital only to be sadly sent home.

I continued to have regular and sometimes painful contractions all the way up until Lorelei was born. It was so not like in all the movies. I really wanted to be that girl whose water broke and rushed to the hospital, but as you know babies have their own ideas.

When I went to my dr on the 17th I begged for an induction. I was insanely swollen. My flip flops didn't even fit. My dr was extremely unsympathetic and said he would not induce until I was 10 days past their version of my due date. I returned to my nasty dr on October 24 for my non-stress test where they informed me I was in actual labor and my fluid levels were low. It felt exactly the same to me so I would have never known had they not told me. They sent us immediately to the hospital.

At this point you would think I would be pumped, but I was in a panic because I hadn't eaten yet that day and  was starving! It was 3pm and we were planning on heading to On the Border after my appointment. I convinced the hubs to stop at Chik-fil-A and let me order some fries. I think I was mostly in a panic and trying to do anything to seem like normal.

Once we got to the hospital Amie came up to keep me company so John could go pick up the bags. We were doing our laps around the labor and delivery unit and Amie started having contractions too! I think it's like how women's cycles sync up, so did our labor!

I was in labor for 18 hours and progressing nicely. Then the good dr went home around 8am and the craptastic one showed up for his shift. I was 8cm and fully effaced when he showed up. He asked me if I had had any pitocin to which I replied no. He then said, "Well that's funny since you were begging me for it a few days ago." Let me give you a tip. Don't mess with the 10 month pregnant lady who has been in labor for almost 3 weeks. She will hurt you. Luckily for him there was so much stuff shoved up my lady parts I was unable to get out of bed to punch him in his smug face.

After this he came back in an hour and my cervix had started swelling and had gone from 8cm down to 7cm. Dr. Douche proudly announced that I needed a c-section. Now let me give you a little background on why this was extra devastating. Like most women I did not want a c-section. We didn't have any family or friends to help us at home and I NEEDED to be able to get around. When I was begging Dr. Douche for my induction I explained that I wanted the best possible scenario for avoiding a c-section and going weeks past my due date was going to make it more probable. He then replied that given my body type he found it unlikely that I would be able to deliver vaginally. Oh so encouraging and positive!

As soon as my impending c-section was announced, I pretty much lost it. You know the kind of crying where you can't breathe and your nose instantly clogs itself. Luckily Amie's husband David was in the room next door with her and he was able to come over and help my husband give me a blessing.

So I headed over to the OR more than a little heartbroken. I'm so grateful for all of our wonderful nurses who were there to help me. I had a nurse named Aimee when I first checked in and she wanted to come and stay with me for my surgery even though she was assigned to me anymore. She was awesome and very reassuring. People named Amy/Aimee/Amie must just be special!

I will say the c-section was awful. I knew it would suck but I was unprepared for how violent it felt. I mean it's pretty traumatizing to be naked and numb from the neck down while they move you all around and yank on you. Then when they strap your arms down like you're on the cross you start to panic a little. To make matters worse when they started to cut into me I could still feel it! Luckily it was all over in a few minutes and we had Lorelei to show for it!

She was such an awesome baby and latched right away in the recovery room. She must have known her momma needed something to break her way that day. The days in the hospital were kind of a blur. My dad showed up on Friday to meet his first grandbaby and our awesome photographer came to the hospital so we'd be able to share those first few days with our family back home.

It was so nice that Amie delivered at the same time because she and her husband have lots of family here so we got to share some of their visitors.

Lorelei has been an amazing baby and we are so blessed. She honestly rarely cries and is so happy. I'm so grateful for all of her patience with me as a mom as I try and figure her out.

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