Grady’s Nursery!

Nothing to see here, just being a mom, not posting on my blog. Ugh. Ok fine, here’s another picture of my kid.

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Up on dat drool game.

Despite my best efforts and complete lack of skills, Grady has a pretty bomb nursery. It’s bear themed (What else?) and I had some amazing help with almost every aspect, mostly from my amazing craft-queen of a friend, Rachel Hamen. She has a super successful Etsy shop called One Crafty Foxx where she sells everything from themed party decor packages to t-shirt designs to witty kitchen signs. She’s my go-to for all things crafty or design-oriented and she should totally be yours too!

I hope you also enjoy a virtual tour of our baby room, complete with my meaningless commentary.

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My grandfather painted this bed gray for us. It was so sweet and cute. He was extremely concerned about the paint being safe to have around Grady and went to great lengths to ensure that the bed was perfect for our little guy.

My grandfather painted this bed gray for us. It was so sweet and cute. He was extremely concerned about the paint being safe to have around Grady and went to great lengths to ensure that the bed was perfect for our little guy.

Bryan's second mom had that quilt made. When I found out we were getting a quilt, I was a little worried because I am not a quilt person at all, but I couldn't love this more! It's adorable and fits the room perfectly. Those cute pillows were handmade by my friend Kim, who maintains my sanity on a regular basis.

Bryan’s second mom had that quilt made. When I found out we were getting a quilt, I was a little worried because I am not a quilt person at all, but I couldn’t love this more! It’s adorable and fits the room perfectly. Those cute pillows were handmade by my friend Kim, who maintains my sanity on a regular basis.

These are a Rachel specialty. She found the perfect colors to go with everything and did the silhouettes exactly like I wanted. https://www.etsy.com/shop/onecraftyfoxx

These are a Rachel specialty. She found the perfect colors to go with everything and did the silhouettes exactly like I wanted. https://www.etsy.com/shop/onecraftyfoxx 

What kid wouldn't love  fake bear rug? Mali and Phoebe like it too, unfortunately.

What kid wouldn’t love fake bear rug? Mali and Phoebe like it too, unfortunately.

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Rachel was the main host for my baby shower, and since she knew she was helping with my nursery, she made decoration for the shower that could double as nursery decor. This bunting was one of those items, and I loved it so much I used it in TWO different places in the room.

This shelf was custom made by Bryan's sister Alicia who has a business called Burnside Woodworking. She is amazing at this stuff and did I mention that SHE MADE THIS BASED ON A SMALL IPHONE PHOTO THAT I FOUND ON PINTEREST WITH ABSOLUTELY NO PATTERN AT ALL? Seriously, girl's got skills.

This shelf was custom made by Bryan’s sister Alicia who has a business called Burnside Woodworking. She is amazing at this stuff and did I mention that SHE MADE THIS BASED ON A SMALL IPHONE PHOTO THAT I FOUND ON PINTEREST WITH ABSOLUTELY NO PATTERN AT ALL? Seriously, girl’s got skills.

We have a bear shelf. you guys! A bear shelf! Just so awesome.

We have a bear shelf. you guys! A bear shelf! Just so awesome.

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That birth plaque may be one of the things I'm most obsessed with. Maybe. There's too much. I asked Rachel to make a stats sign and she whipped this up in like a day. She's awesome. She can do whatever animal and custom colors for this bad boy. https://www.etsy.com/shop/onecraftyfoxx

That birth plaque may be one of the things I’m most obsessed with. Maybe. There’s too much. I asked Rachel to make a stats sign and she whipped this up in like a day. She’s awesome. She can do whatever animal and custom colors for this bad boy. https://www.etsy.com/shop/onecraftyfoxx

Found that lamp at Walmart y'all. Not kidding.

Found that lamp at Walmart y’all. Not kidding. Also my grandfather made this table for me and painted it the same color as the bed. Tornado Woodcrafters for the win!

What even is the point of a toy bin without a bear on it? Says my husband. #BearsForLife

What even is the point of a toy bin without a bear on it? Says my husband. #BearsForLife

This is the coolest wall in the room. Rachel made everything on it (save for the coat hook). That ombre bear cutout? Good gosh she's good.

This is the coolest wall in the room. Rachel made everything on it (save for the coat hook). That ombre bear cutout? BY HAND. Good gosh she’s good.

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A bear hook for a bear coat. What else?

A bear hook for a bear coat. What else?

Shout out to Brian Bailey of the Mustache Goods and Wears in Fayetteville for this bad boy. So, so cool.

Shout out to Brian Bailey of the Mustache Goods and Wears in Fayetteville for this bad boy. So, so cool.

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Bryan took and edited like 80 photos of this bear because he loves it so much. I’m only leaving you with 2, but trust me, I can give you the hookup on photos of this bear if you want.

Did you think there would be anything that didn't have a bear on it? WRONG! Even his clothes hamper is with the program.

Did you think there would be anything that didn’t have a bear on it? WRONG! Even his clothes hamper is with the program.

Another crafty friend of mine painted Grady's name on this for me. She's super talented as well and you can find her at

Another crafty friend of mine painted Grady’s name on this for me. She’s super talented as well and you can find her at https://www.etsy.com/shop/SkvarlaStudios?ref=search_shop_redirect

Obviously I have some extremely talented friends. My nursery would never have looked like it does without their help and we are so grateful. Anyone who can sit down with me and catch my non-vision and somehow turn it into a reality deserves high praise and all of the chai tea, so one more HUGE shout-out to my amazing friend Rachel Hamen at One Crafty Foxx.

All photos taken by Sixth and Burnside Photography.

Love, Alex

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Frustrated Nester

Grady bedroom before

In my last post, I talked about some of the frustrations that come with being debt free and having to save for things and pay for them with actual money. When we bought the “SuBEARben” as it’s come to be lovingly referred to in the Fittin household and among our friends, we *kind of* wiped ourselves out. What I mean is that we saved up for it, pouring all of our extra cash into “the car fund” and afterwards were running pretty thin.

This gap happened to fall when that awesome New Mom Nesting Energy kicked in…leading to a very frustrating time for me. Honestly guys, we are T-3 weeks from due date and although most of these have finally been ordered,  my child still does not have a dresser/changing station, CARSEAT (We had one. It was actually like the first thing we had thanks to my old coworkers, but then we decided to trade it in for the travel system that comes with that exact same carseat. Target may have free shipping right now…but it is not quick free shipping.), and a few other necessities.

Even more frustrating, I’ve learned that nesting is not just for biological children. The adoption front has not been enabling my patience problem either. Apparently there has been some sort of paperwork problem or delay with our home study, which is why our last step has taken so long. We were really hoping to get to meet the boys at least once before the baby came, and now it’s looking like that won’t happen. I’m super disappointed.

Is it too much to ask for everything to go perfectly? Gosh.

When I figure out what the lesson is for this latest experience in the growing-a-family part of our story, I’ll let you know. But for now I’m just…frustrated.

Love, Alex

 

Crying in the Ultrasound Room

See my dress color? Yeah. It took me a while to get to that thumbs up.

See my dress color? Yeah. It took me a while to get to that thumbs up.

Now I’m sure some of you thought that title may have corresponded to precious, loving feelings of seeing my baby and finding out its sex. I think I’ve made it clear that I am not precious, and while I do cry a lot, talking about the amazing feelings of seeing your baby are awesome, yes, but also not unique banter for a blog. What I’m getting at is that I cried hot, sad, guilty tears that day. And before you come at me with pitchforks and torches shouting about how I’m ungrateful and unloving, hear me out. Especially because I think I’m probably not alone in this.

It most likely won’t come as much of a shock since the majority of women hope for a girl during pregnancy, but *shocker* I wanted a girl.

I had my reasons. Everyone in my larger church community seemingly had lotsandLotsandLOTS of boys and I wanted a different experience than them. We have girl dogs (ahem, children) and though it might sound silly, watching Bryan with them and knowing the type of man he is, I just wanted to see him with a daughter so badly. There are petty reasons, like the fact that girl clothes are 1000 times cuter than boy clothes, (<–fact) and also bigger reasons like the one I have to pull the vague-card on again (I really do promise to share soon).

Regardless of all the things, Bryan and I were both standing squarely on the girl-train.

In my increasing nervousness as the big day approached, I did some research on gender disappointment and found that it is an actual clinical issue that many women deal with. This should have made me feel better right? “No!” said my brain, “That would be much too logical!”

I was just so afraid of being disappointed to find out it was a boy and then feeling guilty about being disappointed like a vicious circle. I talked to a few people about it, most of whom understood, some of whom did not (Thanks guys!). It didn’t help to hear friends and family refer to the baby as a “him” before we even found out though, because as ridiculous as this sounds, I knew their happiness at guessing correctly would make it harder for me to pretend to be excited.

On July 24, we got up and headed to the clinic with a belly full of baby and butterflies. We were called into the ultrasound room first. Just like that. No doctor visit barrier. I think the tech was a little weirded out at ALL THE QUESTIONS. “Already? Are you sure? Like this? Right here? Uhh, so do you have kids? What’s the worst reaction you’ve ever seen of someone finding out the gender?” (You guys…) She told me that none were really too bad.

Awesome.

So we’re all chit-chatty and “Oh my gosh that’s our baby!” for the first few minutes. Then. She waves past the evidence quickly, but we had already seen. “Ok, are you ready to know what it is?! It’s a boy!”

Silence.

I had such mixed emotions at that moment. Here I have a perfect, healthy baby BOY and all I can think about it my disappointment–>guilt for being disappointed–>but…BABY GIRL CLOTHES–>our baby is healthy!–>disappointment–>OMG HE’S SUCKING HIS THUMB–>well they do say boys are easier and now I’m off the hook for the birds and the bees talk–>disappointment. (<– vicious cycle. I know you appreciate me spelling it out for you because it’s not obvious or anything really.)

I cried. Like, so much that multiple tissues were needed. It was embarrassing and I hated myself for it.

All of the articles I had read about gender disappointment talked about how, much like when you take a pregnancy test that is negative and mourn the loss of a baby that never was, you mourn the loss of the baby girl or boy that never was.

I got it. Sitting in the waiting room accepting the fact that we wouldn’t be having a girl before having to fake excitement for the doctor was hard for both of us. Not to mention the fact that we had this family reveal dinner in the works for that very night that I had to polish my acting skills for.

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Oh hey guys!

I got to work that morning and immediately started messing with our Amazon baby registry as a coping mechenism, hoping to distract myself with cute and shiny. It was overwhelming enough trying to pick out so much stuff with all of the reviews and safety reports and options and opinions to consider. What made it harder was that BOY STUFF IS JUST NOT AS CUTE AS GIRL STUFF. Plus, as it turns out, I’m super picky about the boy crap I actually do like. I’m so much fun, no really.

See?

See? So much fun. (Ugh so grainy. Sorry guys, It was dark in there!)

Oh, and I had to call the bakery to tell them what color to use to fill the cupcakes and I’m sure the poor girl at Rick’s just thought I was a heartless weirdo.

“Hey, just calling to tell you the filling color..it’s blue *small amount of forced excitement*”

“Oh a boy! Yay!”

“…yep. Ok thank you *more forced exctiement*.”

I mean…

How awesome are those though? Not-at-all-humble brag: the catchphrase was completely my idea and not a product of Pinterest at all.

How awesome are those though? Not-at-all-humble brag: the catchphrase was completely my idea and not a product of Pinterest at all. (Again with the grainy. I tried with the editing, I really did.)

We took our announcement photo to post after the reveal dinner, which we made it through and I didn’t cry at all. Small victory! It was actually a lot of fun to watch everyone bite into (or the smart ones use a knife to cut) the cupcakes and cheer at the filling color (which they would have done for either one of course).

See how genuine my smile is? ACTING.

See how genuine my smile is? ACTING.

The next morning, I talked to my mom and apologized for being a giant brat crabby the night before. She said she knew I was disappointed and completely understood. AND THEN (this is the “wait it gets getter” part) she said possibly the most profound thing ever. Work with me here because apparently I’m even more selfish and dense than I ever thought.

She told me that as much as having a little girl would have been wonderful and sweet and awesome,God obviously has a plan for our son, and that plan is much better than anything we could have dreamt up for our baby girl.

Ouch.

I realized that I had been thinking of this only from the standpoint of me having a baby/child/teenager. I was forgetting that there was a lot more living for him to do after the “raising him” part was over. And I think that kind of rocks.

A few minutes later my dad called me.

Let me pause here and explain something, because what I’m about to say will have much more meaning once I do. My dad and I are like, the same person.  Seriously. Both stubborn  as mules, both feel the need to constantly be right, and both tell it like it is and have to work hard on the encouraging words. So while my dad has lots of amazing qualities, the pretty words aren’t normally one of them. This is how I know God was (more gently than usual in my case) sending me the words my heart needed.

He told me that he knew I was hoping for a girl, but he thought I should know that I was going to make the best boy mom. He said that watching me with Grant and Guy (the sons of both of our mentors and who we watch when they are out of town), he could tell that I was going to be great and natural at this parenting thing. (<–HAHA)

Cue the tears. Seriously, y’all. This is when the good times started for me. I still had set-backs, like on vacation when all I saw were adorable, clean, well-dressed little girls and mangy, screaming, fit-thowing little boys. Hold me. But I got to go shopping at the outlet malls with the world’s best and most patient mom because for real, I AM SO PICKY, and I got some freaking adorable stuff for Grady.

That’s his name, Grady. OMG my child has a name. And OMG I’m over halfway there. And OMG I’m someone’s mom.

Crazy Eyes.

 

I've told you about my husband's obsession with bears, yes? Imagine my excitement to find this. I mean really.

I’ve told you about my husband’s obsession with bears, yes? Imagine my excitement to find this. I mean really.

My child is already swimming in threads thanks hugely to my wonderful and generous parents. Can you tell which piece is the favorite?

My child is already swimming in threads thanks hugely to my wonderful and generous parents. Can you tell which piece is the favorite?

Love, Alex

PS: For what it’s worth, here is the link for our ultrasound video. Not that I expect anyone to go watch it. I completely understand that what is wonderful and exciting for proud parents is just soooo boring for others. 🙂

You Be Sweet to Me.

Man I love this guy. I’ve been with him 4 years this month. Don’t even talk to me about the crazy fact that less than 4 years ago we didn’t even know each other existed, and now we’re married and having a baby together. I’ve already thought about and it weirds me out. But also, still gives me butterflies.

There are a lot of couples out that have some weird habits. Sorry but it’s true. We don’t do baby-talk, we aren’t especially cuddly, and we don’t call each other pet names that are too out there. We do, however, have things that we say that are so not weird to us, but upon reflection, probably get some interesting looks from others. A big one that I discovered recently is probably not normal is “You be sweet to me.” You have to say it with a slight pout and when your partner is not paying attention to you or is admittedly not being sweet to you. I also will straight up tell Bryan to pay attention to me. Just keeping it real y’all.

What are some of your unique relationship things that, after thinking about it, are probably pretty weird?