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Well, today I am officially only 4 days away from my estimated due date… and no sign of any baby yet.  I made “labor cookies” last night, and ate a bunch with hopes that they might help start things, but no such luck.  Although they are very tasty cookies, and Bryan and I both enjoyed them, so it wasn’t a total waste of time 🙂

Right now I’m going to give another house tour to show the progress that we’ve made lately as well as talk about a few things we’re planning to do with our landscaping.

I’m so excited that the weather is so beautiful this week.  It’s been so hot all summer, and finally now it’s cooling down a little, and is supposed to be right around 80 degrees and sunny every day this week.  Love it!  So here are some outdoor pictures of our house on this beautiful morning.

As you can probably see, our one little existing tree next to our mailbox could use some mulching around it.  Right now I think there’s some dirt, weeds, and a big ant hill around it.

As I mentioned in the previous post about our landscaping ideas, the existing plants around our entryway are a disaster.  From a distance maybe they don’t look too bad, but up close you can see they’re really a mess.

Our current short term plan is to weed, clean up the existing plants, and mulch the beds.

The long term plan is to dig up, possibly try to transfer the existing plants elsewhere in the yard, and plant new things like azaleas instead.  But that’s not going to happen any time soon.

The planting on the right side of our entryway is just ridiculous.  Someone thought it was a good idea to plant the shortest, smallest plants back along the house, and gradually get taller and larger towards the front… which means that all of the plants behind the bushes are invisible.  Crazy!  There are actually 3 layers of different plants behind the bushes, and you can’t see any of them because the bushes are taller and block them all!  Who in the world thought that was a good idea?!

Anyway, I also want to get some kind of patio furniture to go on our little side/wrap-around patio.  So that will happen at some point.

And you can see the area between our house and our neighbor’s house is where I want to plant the thick trees to act as a barrier between our houses.  The landscape design person who came to our house recommended Green Giants, which look like this:

So that’s it for outside.

Now for a tour of all the curtains that are now hanging in our house!  I got the new white curtains about a month ago from Ikea.  I picked them because of several reasons:

  1. We had a ton of windows to add curtains to (5 sets altogether)
  2. Our windows are really tall
  3. Tall curtains times 5 sets = very expensive!
  4. Unless you get curtains from Ikea, in which case you can get a set of extra long (98 1/2″) white Vivan curtains for only $9.99 per pair!

Let’s start in the dining room.

I don’t think you can really tell in the pictures, but all of my curtains are currently very wrinkled unfortunately.  I washed and dried them all, but did not iron them, and I don’t have a steamer.  They would look better if the wrinkles were gone.  Let me know if I have any volunteers to come over, take down 10 curtain panels, iron, and then re-hang them all… or maybe I’ll just wait a year and hope that eventually  the wrinkles will fall out on their own.

Now onto the sun room!

This room got 2 sets, and I think it really helped complete the room.

We also moved the portraits that used to hang next to the window above my desk since the curtains took up a lot of the wall space.  So now they’re over next to the french doors that lead out to the patio, which I think is actually better.

And here is the living room.

And our bedroom.

And that completes all of the new white curtains!  They’re nothing too exciting, but I think they really help all the rooms look more complete now.  I like them.

We also hung up the curtains in Talan’s room (I say “we” but it was Bryan’s friend Dana who saved the day last weekend and came over to help Bryan hang them all up.  He was a life saver!)  These curtains in Talan’s room were curtains that we already had from the townhouse – they had been in his room over there, too.  They were actually the only set of curtains that we were able to re-use from the townhouse because all the rest ended up being too short for the tall windows in this house.

I don’t think I’ve posted pictures of Talan’s room since it’s come together, so here are some shots of it.  I realize that the duvet cover is not very “boy” looking.  Everyone comments on that.

What happened is that the striped duvet that Talan usually has in his room got dirty, so I took it off to wash it, and in the meantime I put this other cover onto the comforter, and then I’ve never gotten around to taking it off and putting the other one back on.  Talan hasn’t commented on it though so I don’t know if he really minds too much.

The rest of his room is still very much “him.”  He’s got his sports stuff and the Spiderman poster and all of his books and toys of course.  One other thing is that we actually use his room as our guest room, and when he’s here as well as a guest, he stays on the fold-out couch in Bryan’s office.  And since we’ve actually had guests a lot recently, he has mainly been staying in the office.  I can’t even remember the last time that he stayed in his bed now that I think of it… he loves sleeping on the fold-out couch anyway.  He asks to sleep there even when we don’t have guests staying in his room.

And speaking of Bryan’s office… we recently got a new addition to the bonus room!  Bryan got Talan a “big brother” gift, to help get him excited about his now role as a big brother.

Talan came over yesterday, and saw it for the first time.  He loves the foosball table!  He said it’s his favorite game ever!  I’m sure it won’t be long before he beats everyone at it.  Right now he’s too short to see the whole playing field so we adults still have an advantage… for now.

Seriously, he was so good at his small table hockey game, which was like a mini-foosball table, that he beat everyone.  Every time.  So I really don’t think it will be long before that’s the case with the new table.

Here’s a couple of shots of Bryan’s office, too, since I don’t think I’ve ever shared much of it before.

It’s a really nice space for Bryan to work on video editing without being distracted (like it was in the townhouse when he had to work in the living room).

And he got somewhat free reign on the decorating his this room.  Which has been hard for me, but I know he appreciates having a place to display all of his sports stuff. 🙂

The office and bonus room are really so nice.  We just love our house and are so grateful that we have it!

Another project that Dana helped Bryan with last weekend was hanging up a medicine cabinet in the guest bathroom upstairs.

We hung the same one in the half bathroom downstairs back when we first moved in, but it was heavy and difficult, and I wasn’t able to help Bryan with it, so it’s great that it finally got done.

Here’s the one in the downstairs bathroom:

And now let’s finish this little house tour with another look at the nursery, just because I like looking at it 🙂

We did actually make a change in here last week.  Bryan installed a dimmer switch because I thought it would be nice during middle of the night feedings and diaper changes not to have to turn on the bright lights.  So that’s done!

And the rest of the room is just sitting pretty, waiting…

Oh, and we did install the video monitor that my sister gave us as a shower gift.  We actually installed it a long time ago, but it hides behind the closet door, so I forgot to ever take a picture of it.  So here it is…

That’s all!  Now let’s all hope that the baby decides to come out soon because I am READY!

Bryan and I had another ultrasound done yesterday.  Apparently there is a larger than average amount of fluid in with the baby, and so they want to monitor it and make sure it stays stable and doesn’t increase.  The amount of fluid is within the normal range, but it’s on the higher end of normal.  It doesn’t pose any risks to the baby while she’s in there, so there’s no need for induction or anything like that.

I’m not really near a “risky” or highly concerning level, just something to monitor.  It doesn’t indicate any problems or anything at this level, apparently it’s just one of those things that happens sometimes.

Anyway, getting this ultrasound was pretty amazing because the ultrasound technician got some great close-ups of Madison’s face!  It’s still hard to tell much since she’s kind of squished looking, and her arm and other stuff kind of got in the way of her face, but still pretty amazing to see her so clearly at this point!

So who do you think she looks like?!

Baby Madison

Baby Bryan

Baby Madison

Baby Stefani

Bryan

Stefani

Madison

Bryan

Baby Stefani

Well, this past weekend was Labor Day weekend, and I had high hopes that Madison would have an ironic sense of humor and would choose to initiate labor in conjunction with Labor Day.  Unfortunately, that did not happen.  Apparently she’s just still too comfortable hanging out inside of me.

Last Friday marked 38 weeks (AKA 9 months plus 2 weeks).  And the baby (and my stomach) just keep getting bigger.

I find that I spend a lot of time now laying on the couch on my side because it’s the most comfortable position to get relief from the burden of all the weight of my stomach on my skin, muscles, back, etc.

Some times I feel better than other times.  Almost every day now I feel sick to my stomach for at least part of the day.  This is not really different than my entire pregnancy though… the nauseous feeling has become very familiar to me over these past nine months.  It will probably be strange to be able to get up in the morning, eat breakfast, and then not feel sick to my stomach for the next hour or so.

Sleeping has also become much more of an ordeal lately.  My pelvis/hip joints are apparently loosening up in preparation for labor.  I think I read that the cartilage actually starts softening so that your joints are more flexible.  Anyway, for whatever reason now my hips get really sore from laying on my side in bed when I sleep.  So approximately every hour on the hour I wake up because the hip that I’m laying on hurts so much, and I get up, go to the bathroom, come back, and lay down on the opposite side for the next hour before that side starts hurting a lot… plus I still sometimes get restless leg syndrome when I’m trying to fall asleep at night (something I had never experienced before pregnancy, but is apparently just another common pregnancy symptom), which makes it really difficult to fall asleep.

Other than that though I’m still doing really well, and have probably had a relatively easy pregnancy compared to other people.

I’m just so ready for Madison to be born!  I think I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t see what the point of waiting any longer is.  She’s big enough.  My stomach is big enough.  Our house is ready.  Her nursery is ready.  Everyone is ready.  So… what are we waiting for?!  Come on out Madison!

Sunday night we made an eggplant parmesan recipe that claims to produce labor within 48 hours.  It was delicious, and we ate it again as leftovers for dinner last night.  And we’re going to have the last of it for dinner again tonight.  But… so far it does not seem to be producing any results 🙂