03 February 2014

NICKEL CREEK!

So, I really love Nickel Creek.  They have a charming and spunky sound.  But, they took an "indefinite break"after their last tour and worked on different projects (Punch Brotherssinging with Sarah Jarosz, releasing solo albums, Fiction Familyplaying together just for fun, and just taking some down time).

They just announced this morning that (after 9 years) they are releasing a new album! Woohoo!!!!

Check out their first single, "Destination."  And if you live in or near a major city, you may be lucky enough to attend a show on their limited tour this spring/summer.  You can see the tour schedule on their website.

23 January 2014

WEDDING PLANNING: SOME THOUGHTS

I've been thinking a lot about weddings today. My brother Trey his girlfriend Rachelle made it official, and are getting married this summer.  :)



Well, once I start thinking about something... I have a hard time stopping.  So, I wrote up this list and sent it to my mom as a kind of validation for my efforts, haha.  Then, after her enthusiastic response, I decided to repost it here.  Because, why not.  

Eight Semi-Helpful Thoughts on Wedding Planning, from Ky

1. Pinterest is overwhelming.  It might be easier to write out a list of things you envision now at the beginning, before having all of your plans thwarted by Pinterest "inspiration".  

1a. However, like a wedding magazine, Pinterest can be good for inspiration, but be particular and only pin what you really like.

2. Keep it all together.  Whether you have a physical accordion folder/binder, virtual folder on your desktop, or a private Pinterest board, keep all of the ideas you like best in one place.

3. Create a wedding website.  There are lots of free options with attractive themes.  This is a great way to post engagement photos, dates for the wedding, info about the bride & groom, traveller information, etc.  TheKnot.com (search for wedding websites), weddingwire.comewedding.com, and weddingwindow.com all have free options.

4. Make a list of your "splurge" items (i.e. excellent photographer, beautiful venue, designer dress, handwritten invitations, gorgeous bouquet, tasty catering, etc).  Once you know the things that matter the most to you, you know you can look for ways to save in other areas.

5. TheKnot.com has all kinds of excellent articles and 'to-do' lists.  Very helpful for planning and budgeting. {See the 'Tools' page here.}

6. When the time comes to register, I can recommend registering on Amazon.com.  They have everything on their site, and have a feature where you can include items from other online stores on your Amazon registry.  It's awesome.

7. There are lots of beautiful handmade things on Etsy.com.  I'd suggest having an idea of what you might like to look for here, too, as the possibilities are seemingly endless at times.

8. Yay! These are all of my thoughts for now.


P.s. Definitely not fancy enough to be getting paid to say any of this.  These thoughts were developed from my experience, observations, and research.  

05 November 2013

LA VIE EN ROSE

Some days you just need to see and hear beautiful things.


 


For fun: Rosy things I've been admiring lately here, here, and here



09 September 2013

A SWEET BABY GIRL


Almost a month ago I had a really bad night.  I was terribly uncomfortable, restless, and unable to get much sleep between getting up to use the restroom, overheating, and tossing and turning.  I was mostly sure that I was experiencing Braxton Hicks contractions, as I was 11 days before my due date, but I went to visit my doctor to make sure.

It turned out that I was in early labor.

As I left I called Ryan to tell him the news, then I came home to finish packing our bag and attempt to rest.  I also contacted our doula, whom we had just officially hired the day before, to let her know that I was already in early labor.  The afternoon passed quickly.  We went for a slow walk around the block.  Kristy, the doula, arrived in the later-evening.  We all took another slow walk around the block.  It was mostly a quiet evening. At some point we turned on Finding Nemo for background noise and to help pass the time.  After having contractions at 4-minutes-apart for nearly an hour we left to go to the hospital.  We woke up Brooke to say we'd see her after school (today was to be her first day of school!), and we left.  After a quick prayer to calm our nerves and that everything would go well, we arrived.


 Shortly after being set up in our room, the nurse checked my status again.

"Uh, I feel feet.  That's not a head."

"What?"

"When I touched it, one of them moved.  I'll go get the doctor to double check."

At this point we (me, Ryan, and Kristy) all looked at each other in shock.  Apparently this baby was breech and we all knew what that meant...

The doctor came in and confirmed.

"Yes, she is footling breech. We are going to have to do a C-Section.  We are calling everyone in now and we'll probably get things started in about 40 minutes."

Somehow we (my doctors) missed that my baby was breech.  It wasn't terribly surprising, because she had been breech for all of her ultrasounds, but I had been told that she'd flipped after a physical exam within the last two months.  Though it's possible that she flipped and then flipped again before labor, we all suspect that she never actually flipped and a mistake had been made.  I did know that the baby was posterior/OP (facing my belly, instead of my back as is preferred).  So, this little baby was sitting upward, facing outward.



Meanwhile, I'm still having strong contractions every 3-4 minutes.  At this point I was in active labor.

I should point out that the doctor on call was one whom I had not met before.  He was excellent. (My regular doctors are great, too.)  He was confident, comforting, and soft-spoken which helped me feel better.  Up to this point I had always considered a Plan E (allowing that plans a-d didn't work) of a c-section.  I assumed it would be some emergency - something wrong with me, or something dramatic going on with the baby.  In reality, she was just fine, even quite comfortable.  The problem was that my labor had started and she was not going to be able to be delivered safely without surgery.

I was not upset, or even scared.  OK, maybe a little frightened - suddenly I was going to have major surgery!  After they had Ryan suited up in her surgery gear, they wheeled me to the OR.  I got teary at some point and a sweet nurse leaned in to assure me that there were many people there who were professionals and were going to take excellent care of me and my baby.  I smiled, continued crying, thanked her and explained that I was okay, confident in the doctors and nurses even, I was just overwhelmed.  Ryan was instructed to remain in the hallway until they had administered my spinal anesthesia (in my spine!), when they would retrieve him.  Everyone was very alert (which I appreciated at nearly 3:00 AM) and kind.  After what felt like ages, a nurse finally brought Ryan in and he sat on a stool next to my head.  It felt like only a minute later when suddenly someone announced, "3:08!"  At this, I turned my head to Ryan and asked, "Is the baby out?" To which he replied, "Apparently."  They called him over to watch as they did all of their initial checks.  After cleaning her up and swaddling her up, the doctor brought her to my head so I could see.  I was in shock, but kept kissing her cheeks and feeling surprise at the warmth and softness of her skin.  She was real!  It had worked!



Aren't those silly thoughts?

Almost four weeks have passed, and after a 6-night stay in the hospital due to the baby losing too much weight too quickly and becoming jaundiced, we are home and finally feeling comfortable.  Sure, our sleep banks are not as full as they were before.  Yes, we have questions and concerns.  Of course we don't love to hear crying or having to change messy diapers.

But friends, oh my goodness.

We certainly haven't been upset with any of these things.  Today I came across a group of cards from the attendees at the baby shower my friends threw for me a few weeks before baby came.  These cards were filled with advice, comfort, and supporting messages.  They were intended for me to open one or two here and there when feeling discouraged or needed something positive to read.  Naturally, I opened all of them at once and my heart was filled with gratitude for all of the funny, loving, and supportive notes addressed to me.


My day-to-day life has been so simple these past few weeks.  It is much quieter.  There are more eyebrows raised, smiles seen, and laughs had.  One of these notes mentioned that "...the baby won't remember that the house was a mess.  It is okay to sit and watch the baby all day."  Another mentioned  "all I have is love and attention for my little baby, and I hope that you can enjoy that, too,"  in regard to having a third child that was still a newborn - and not being as uptight and worried as she had been with her first two.  At that moment, my baby girl was asleep in my arms.  Her face warm and stuck to my skin, her lips slightly open, one hand curled by her face, and her other arm flailed to the side.

This was one of those moments.  My heart swelled and I was filled with love.  This little baby was my daughter.  She is the reason that I'm a mother now.  She is part me, and part Ryan, whom I love so dearly.  I love this child, and I can't wait to share so many of my days with her.

How blessed am I?  Mightily so.


Naomi Alice Braithwaite
14 August 2013
3:08 AM
7 lbs. 8.7 oz., 19" long

02 August 2013

MARY POPPINS AND SUCH


Hopefully you've heard about the upcoming movie Saving Mr. Banks.  I am so excited!! 
You can watch the trailer here.

And just for fun, a weirdly wonderful Mary Poppins remix here

03 July 2013

MICKEY MOUSE CARTOONS



There are new Mickey Mouse cartoons!  They've been animated using a combination of hand-drawings and 2D computer animation.  They are visually interesting, innocent, playful, and a respectful throwback to the original Mickey Mouse cartoons.

So far, four of the nineteen cartoons have been released: New York Weenie, No ServiceYodelberg, and Croissant de Triomphe (seen above).  My favorites are Croissant de Triomphe and Yodelberg.

[via Lines and Colors]

22 April 2013

YESTERDAY: BUTTERFLIES AND ART

We're in Florida for the week.  It's actually a work trip for Ryan, but a vacation for me.  Yesterday was our one free day, so we took our cute rental car and zipped all over town.  We started at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI), where we saw the Flight of the Butterflies in their Dome IMAX theater. It was a beautiful story, with stunning images, but to see it in IMAX (a dome theater, no less) was especially powerful.  After the show we wandered around some of the exhibits: The Amazing You (surprisingly interesting and interactive), and the Bio Works Butterfly Garden (free-flying butterflies!).



Next we went to The Dalí Museum.  This place has a seriously impressive collection, and we loved seeing the range of work he covered beyond surrealism, for which he was most known.   In fact, this modern piece, commonly known as "The Lincoln," is my new favorite of his works.  Fun fact: "Gala" was his wife, who posed for him frequently.  Fun fact 2: Our tour guide made sure to mention that this shape of Gala was more of what she looked like as Dalí remembered, rather than literally at the time of posing. :)


The back of the art museum has a garden, including a labyrinth and a large ficus "wish tree," where visitors tie their entry-wristbands to hanging lengths of plastic as they make a wish.  There are different colors for every day of the week, so the effect is that rainbow branches are swaying below the green leaves.  It was quite enchanting, and a lovely way to finish the visit.


Did you notice my growing belly?  ;)
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