Due to the impending arrival of baby numero dos, we have been actively getting Brooklyn's BIG GIRL ROOM ready. In other words, Kyle has been painting. And what a lovely job he's done! It was the only bedroom that remained the ugly masking tape color and I cringed every time I walked in or walked by. But now....inspired by a French house featured in House & Garden, we painted the room a split level purple. The bottom half is a grape color while the top is a lovely lilac color. We're going to continue to work on it (curtains, new bedding, artwork) to make it a lovely little French room for our little girl.
We're all so thrilled with the transformation that we've hung out there lots over the last few days. Brooklyn even took her first nap there today! I kept her company, as I was having a not-good pregnant day. (Almost passed out in the dentist chair today). Freaked me out. Baby's obviously getting too heavy for me to lay on my back for any length of time. Anyway, Brooklyn loves to get under the covers with me and read books together, too. With her hand down my shirt in her all-time favorite cozy position. Can't wait to complete it with some new lamps contributed by my wonderful neighbor, Russ, and new bedding...
I think I've been nesting this entire pregnancy! Is that normal?
Oh, and I have to show off the new overalls that just arrived from J Crew this morning. I ordered them on sale - I have a hard time paying their full prices for the CrewCuts line, but man, as cute as these were, I WOULD have paid full price. Brooklyn could NOT have looked any cuter in them, particularly with her little hair sprouts! And go ahead, admire the purple walls! I do every time I see them!
I love gardening and landscaping and creating beauty in my surroundings. I love getting my hands in the dirt and feeling the soil, smelling it on my skin. I hate that it dries my hands out ridiculously and never seems to get out from under my fingernails, but everytime I put on my gardening gloves and begin to work, off they go 5 minutes later as I itch to FEEL the process. It's much like baking with me. If I'm making bread or mixing dough, I have to get my hands in there and FEEL it. This spring, much to Kyle's chagrin, I have been ambitious in my plans. I spent the winter planning exactly what I wanted to do and where. Knowing it would be a plan stretched out over several years, I focused on the most visible aspect of our house - the front! And I'm still not entirely finished, but the progress that's been made is so satisfying to me.
Last fall, I finished a small bed to the left of our walkway and did a tiny little comma of a bed on the other side of the walkway, but it just wasn't enough. So, over the past few weeks, I have pulled out the big guns, consulted my brother Chad, and really given it some sweat and blood of my own. I recruited Kyle to help me one Saturday (he hates working in the yard on landscaping stuff), and while he ripped out the numerous wisteria vines snaking under the St. Augustine grass, I cut and moved the St. Augustine as sod squares. Talk about incredibly exhausting. Even when you're NOT 6 months pregnant. I bought and planted over 16 shrubs, lorapetalum and limemound spirea, a Japanese maple and some sweet potato vines which will take over this summer. I have been working also on container plants for our back deck, making it a cozy, fragrant place to sit and have a cup of tea or an early morning Bible study.
The Wisteria Hysteria has come and gone. All during the year, I stare at the gnarling limbs and twining branches that is our wisteria - snaking up and around existing trees, creating a living sculpture. A continual promise of beauty contained within, just waiting for those few weeks in April when the weather is warm enough to coax out the purple pods of color. I love watching them emerge and the branches strain for just a few brief weeks to contain the bundles of color and scent. At their peak, I can stand under the trees, look up and see nothing but the color purple, twining vines and thousands of bumblebees, blissfully grazing off the flowers. Fortunately they take no notice of me, or I would not be brave enough to even admire the flowers. I guarantee that the immensity of the vines would impress you. I've NEVER seen wisteria this dense or established. Much to my chagrine during the remaining months of the year when it just looks green and leafy...and during the winter, it can at best be called "winter interest." One of these days, I know we'll have to cut down some of it, but for now, I continue to enjoy its fragrant, lovely charms.
I am learning that I have no need to rent comedy movies to make me laugh anymore. I just look at whatever Brooklyn's doing and it rarely fails to make me and Kyle genuinely laugh out loud with far more enjoyment than had we been watching a movie! I love it when someone does something unexpectedly funny and it just catches you off guard. That kind of funny. Brooklyn is the master at that. Mostly related to her newfound shoe fetish - the girl ADORES shoes and tries on pair after pair throughout the day. Sometimes the pair matches, other times it does not. Never seems to phase her. I have gotten to the point where I'll glance down to see if they're on the right feet or not. If not, I just say, "B, switch em." And she plops down on her bottom and swaps feet. Another new thing is that we are now taking off our clothes at whim. Could be anywhere, anytime. Or just parts of the clothing. You never quite know what to expect. And that, my dear friends, is why I just love being around to witness the ongoing hilarity that is toddlerhood. And why I love being a mom! Here are two moments that caught me off guard and I just happened to have a camera nearby.
I have these big velcro rollers that are designed to coil your hair around, blow dry and then shake out gorgeous rolling curls. Well, when the hair under discussion barely FITS around a roller, you do what you can with what you have. And the end result is...well, anchorwoman hair. Or pageant hair. On a 2 year old. It made me laugh. It was very full, I'll give you that! But I think we'll be waiting awhile to take our rolled hair look out and about.
I realize that as time goes, these pictures get less and less flattering and more and more grotesque, but it is tradition to keep tabs on the progress of your pregnancy via pictures and in this case, I'm not going to buck tradition. So I am officially past the sixth month point and moving right along. The baby is moving pretty regularly, enough so that I find myself absently patting it as though to let him/her know that I acknowledge their presence. Brooklyn felt it move the other day, too, and was delighted! She kept saying, it moved! it moved! And now she's convinced that there is a baby in her tummy, too. So she gets belly pics, too. Although I think her tummy is getting smaller while mine gets larger!
Hey there. I'm Ashley - wife of Kyle, mother of 5: Brooklyn, August, Dorien, Wyeth and Wilder. New residents of Chicago, my favorite city in the world. We live in an old 1893 home that you'll hear all about as we fix it up and make it home. We are Christ followers, home-schoolers, adventure seekers, fun lovers, DIYers, creative souls and this blog is about our lives.