October 30, 2011
I love actions for photoshop...but I'm not going to lie...they are freaking expensive. I can not afford to buy any at the moment, but there are a few that I've tried for free that I love. Oh...if only I could afford the Kubota Actions (I tried them in a free trial for 30 days...they are AMAZING!).
If you have no idea what I'm talking about...Photoshop actions are a recorded sequence of events that, once you press play, will just "happen" to your image. They can do really cool things, most of which I only use at a very low opacity. But you can get some pretty awesome stylized effects too.
One that I LOVE is the Polaroid Generator. It will take any image you have and make it look like a polaroid. There's something about making something new look old that can be nice...and overdone, but nice all the same.
Here are a few examples:
I really love this one. It's Time Zero Expired.
October 26, 2011
I'd like to start out by saying thank you. Thank you for coming such a long way. We are, thankfully, past the terrible oversized T-shirts, our partners over-sized shirts, our partners clothes in general, and those god-forsaken moo-moos. Looking at pregnant women in the '80s and '90s was, for the most part, is a sad sight. I'm sure there were some that could afford super nice, form-fitting maternity clothing. Or, I'm also sure there were plenty that were small enough to fit into their pre-pregnancy clothes their entire pregnancy. We are, thankfully, past the time when pregnant women would wear super stretchy dresses with athletic shoes, whew.
This is a good time for pregnant women and fashion.
We have finally come to appreciate the pregnant form (I attribute this to Demi Moore's famous naked pregnant body on the cover of the August 1991 Vanity Fair...she was awesome). This is something we do, and for the most part, are biologically supposed to do. This is a natural thing for most female bodies. It's nice to find clothing that accentuates the belly (and the boobs for that matter) instead of poorly attempting to hide them. This is the one time in our lives that we feel like it's ok to have a big belly. This is the first time in my life that I've said the word "belly" at least ten times a day. It's a time to be ok with talking about your own belly (Though, I might add, not a time for OTHERS to comment on how big said belly is getting, mind you).
Pregnant women are now encouraged to be sexy. Show a little of this or that...it's ok, you're pregnant. I mean...we are in this "situation" for a reason, right? At some point, we were probably looking a little sexy. Am I right? So, why stop trying to look our best when we can no longer see what shoes we're wearing?
The one question I have for you, Maternity Clothing Designers, is this...why cargo pants?
I mean seriously...why cargo pants? Of all pants for EVERY SINGLE MATERNITY LINE TO CARRY...it's cargo pants? I don't get it. Who needs that extra pocket? That extra bulk? My belly (there goes that word again) is already 4 times its normal size. That, in turn, makes the rest of me LOOK smaller (by comparison only). Why would I want extra bulk around my legs? Why the extra pocket and then, in most cases, make the pants taper making my upper legs and rear look even bigger? This just makes no sense, MCD (that's military speak for Maternity Clothing Designer).
And...really, who needs the extra pocket? What would I put in there? I'm not sure there's any person, pregnant or not, who needs the extra pocket. If you need extra pockets for work (construction workers, artists, etc) you would wear a tool belt or apron or something. The pocket is also in a really unfortunate, not easy-to-get-to location...halfway down my leg. Screw any of those other people, when pregnant, how am I going to reach halfway down my leg to unfasten the not one but TWO buttons on the pocket to get whatever the hell I put in there that I probably forgot about halfway down and now can't remember why I'm sitting on the floor? And now, I can't get up.
Even little boys, who I have to admit look super cute in cargo pants, don't use the freaking pocket.
I know! It must be to put something in there toward the beginning of the pregnancy (you know, when we're excited to be pregnant and we wanted to go shopping for maternity clothes and all Target had was these stupid cargo pants. We didn't want them, but we got them anyway cause that's all they had) and forgetting about it through the dizzying, exciting journey that is pregnancy. The baby comes, we still haven't remembered the thing we put in there, and we pack the maternity clothes away (hopefully sooner, rather than later, BUT we're going to be nice to ourselves because we just birthed one, maybe two, babies). Then we get pregnant to start the whole process again, we unpack all the maternity clothes (so exciting!) and those stupid cargo pants (not so exciting), we find whatever the hell we put in that stupid extra bulky pocket in the first place (now I can't even remember what it was).
So please, MCDs, please make us some casual pants that look good (that we don't have to pay an arm and a leg for) and save the yards of fabric you were going to use for those silly pockets for more pants! See...we all win!
Your friend, and pregnant with twins,
October 23, 2011
I absolutely love this shirt. I am lucky enough to have a sister-in-law who just had twins who also happened to not want any of her maternity clothes anymore. She also had a lot of REALLY CUTE STUFF. And one of them is this shirt. I don't think you can see it in the picture, but there are two sets of baby footprints on it. I would wear this shirt all the time. I would wear it to work if I could.
I'm trying to take these pictures in different locations with some variety. It probably doesn't help with actually documenting the size of the belly...but oh well. I'm getting bigger...and I will continue to get bigger. That is all anyone needs to know. :).
This weekend was fabulous. My mom came and helped me paint the nursery. When I say helped, I mean she painted it while I was at work on Friday and I came home and helped her finish one wall. It was great. And it looks fantastic. We also primed and then I painted the changing table. AND...our swivel rocker came in. It's all so exciting, I forgot to take pictures while the sun was up. So that will have to be another day.
For now, here is week 20.
Yes, I'm still trying to do yoga. And that's all I have to say about that!
Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!
October 18, 2011
October 16, 2011
October 15, 2011
I'll start with the bad.
The boys and I were in a wreck on Thursday morning. Before I get started...we're ok.
I was driving to work and a man in a large truck fell asleep at the wheel while driving. He was going in the opposite direction I was. He crossed over the turning lane and then into my lane. He was basically coming straight for me. I swerved my car to try to get out of his way and he hit my car on the driver's side. The damage went from midway of the driver's door all the way to the back of my car. It spun me around so I was facing the opposite direction on the side of the road.
I was terrified...as you can imagine. So was he. He ran over to me and asked if I was ok. I said, "please call an ambulance, I am pregnant with twins."
The ambulance was called.
I was taken to the hospital.
The mosquitos were terrible.
The EMT's were super nice and careful with me. They all wanted to make sure I (and the babes) were ok.
We get to the hospital in a few minutes and they take me in (this is the first time I have EVER been a patient in a hospital. I was born in a birth center). The ER doctor is checking me out and asking me questions.
But the only thing I could think about was the boys. That's all I wanted to know about. I didn't want any x-rays. I didn't want to continue to answer questions. I just wanted an ultrasound. The poor nurse in the ER had never used a doppler on twins...so she wasn't sure if she was hearing the same twin over and over again or if she was hearing two babies.
For the first time...I really felt like a parent. When I look back at it, I realize that it was a little strange. But nothing felt strange about that feeling at that moment. I honestly didn't care about myself. I knew I was ok enough. I wanted to know how my babies were. While I had a feeling they were ok. I wasn't having any pain there. The air bags didn't deploy in my car, so I didn't have an impact in the front. But I wanted to see them. I wanted to see their skinny bums keep moving so the radiology tech couldn't keep track of them.
I finally got to the ultrasound room. The radiology tech was very nice and quiet. At first, she didn't let me see the screen. I understand that she probably rarely does baby ultrasounds. She was getting calls about all other types of body parts like appendixes and legs and arms. She was keeping the screen facing directly to her because I'm sure that's what she's used to doing. She probably wanted to make sure everything was ok before showing me. I was pretty calm throughout this entire process. I was trying to read her face to see if I could see any signs...good or bad. She was very good at her job and gave me no signs whatsoever.
So I just kept asking questions. And eventually, she turned the screen so I could see. And there they were. My children. All of a sudden they felt like mine. I'm tearing up just as I'm writing this. Because it's true.
I knew I was having babies. I knew I was having twin boys. But, it wasn't until I needed to see them that I knew that they were mine. And that I loved them. Funny how things happen. I know that feeling would have come eventually. But it wasn't until I had the distinct NEED to see them that I understood, finally, how my own mother feels about me. It's a nice feeling.
And here is poor Bonita.
The super sad part about this is that we are literally writing the very last check to pay off Bonita. All of that money was going to go to day care...which we still need :). I'm not sure if I'm hoping that Bonita is totaled or that we can get her fixed. I do love her so and I will be sad to see her go if she has to.
In the meantime...I get to drive a Nissan Rogue. Now, I'm not a fan of huge cars (Bonita is the biggest car I've owned to date. I've owned an '86 honda accord, a geo storm, a cavalier, a 14 year old two-door acura integraand finally the matrix)...but I do like this one. The Rogue has a lot of room, but it's not too big. So I will enjoy it for now. And I'll enjoy being alive and being pregnant. There are so many things to be thankful for!
October 13, 2011
I've had thoughts all along of what I want it to be like...
Clutter-free (at least before they're born...there's going to be plenty of clutter later)
A place to be free
A place for them to eventually play and entertain themselves
It's going to be THEIR room for a long while. In fact, they might be sharing a room til they leave for college :).
So...what am I thinking. While painting can be reasonably cheap $$$-wise, it really is a pain and one of my least favorite things to do. I love the end result, but I hate prepping and moving furniture and all that other stuff. For a long time I always wanted to paint the rooms in my house fun colors...red, orange, navy, green. But now, I would rather paint the walls a neutral color (this goes for large, expensive pieces of furniture, too) and leave the color to the things that I can change on a more regular basis. It is so much easier to make fun pillows or paint a cool lamp than it is to paint a room or buy a new couch.
I digress, because this post was not supposed to be about painting and my own personal color theory (sidebar: I used to be the Arts & Crafts Coordinator at a spend-the-night camp at the beach. Kids used to ask me all the time what my favorite color was. My answer was always, and will always be, "I respect all colors equally." I could go on).
This post is really about what happened to the guest bedroom (soon to be baby room) closet. It should be more of a question: What in the &*(^*% happened to that closet?
This is a bit embarrassing (sorry husband), but doesn't every newly married couple, who doesn't have kids, have one of these. It's where you put all the stuff that you want to keep, but you're not sure where to put. In this case, some stuff of mine from architecture school, the hub's suits that won't fit in his closet, some Christmas decorations, extra linens, extra paper...the list could go on. But the important thing is, this closet did not have an organizer. We now have closet organizers in 3 of our 4 closets and let me tell you what a lifesaving purchase these have been. While we have pretty big closets (all of them are small walk-ins except for 1), they only had a rod and shelf on two sides. This is utterly inefficient. It's amazing how much storage space one can get out of a closet vertically.
Depending on your closet, this could cost between $50-$150. I ordered my most recent organizers (Rubbermaid, white, with the continuous metal bar, not the interrupted kind (in my opinion, this is key)) from AMAZON and they got here in two days for FREE because I have Amazon Prime. I save all the pieces I can't use at the moment because I might need to reorganize at a later date.
I was able to unload the mess, install the new closet system, and load and organize everything back in the closet all within a few hours AND PREGNANT! (Don't worry, I didn't have to do any heavy lifting and the hubs was there when I needed him...I am the fix-it lady in our house. He kept me fed and happy.) I used my trusty cordless drill and a level.
TIP: If you are planning to install a closet system, do not, I repeat DO NOT, try to use the drywall anchors that come with the system. They are CRAP. That is the only negative I know about these systems. Go to your local hardware store and get some screw in drywall anchors that hold 100 lbs and use them. You'll be fine.
Ok. So now for the finished result.
I mean, seriously, is that not amazing?
I will go upstairs just to look at it sometimes, I think it's so pretty.
Plenty of room for mom and dad's stuff, while still plenty of room for babies' stuff. AND...if I need more space, I can put a column of shelves on the back wall (diapers, anyone?).
And, no, Rubbermaid did not give me any money for writing about their product (I'd take some if they'd give it to me...I've got two babies to feed).
October 11, 2011
We are having two healthy BOYS! And we couldn't be more excited (mostly because the word "healthy" came before the word "BOYS"!
And, since Halloween is coming up. I thought I'd show some funny pictures of twin boy costumes. I know we won't be able to do this for long...so I will EAT IT UP while I can.
[caption id="attachment_1051" align="alignright" width="490" caption="get it...they're "buds""][/caption] photo credit
October 08, 2011
This is me, almost 19 weeks pregnant with twins, wearing a prepregnancy dress to a dear friend's wedding. Booyah!
Meanwhile, I was just talking with the hubs about the letters "I" and "e" and how I have a love-hate relationship with their relationship in many words. This is why I mostly love auto-correct on my phone....mostly.
October 07, 2011
I was hoping to write a silly note to all maternity clothing manufacturers today about cargo pants...but instead, I got a flu shot on Tuesday. It was my first flu shot in my life, and now I'm sick! Stupid flu shot!
Instead, I hope everyone has a wonderful Friday and weekend!
October 04, 2011
October 03, 2011
So, here we are for week one! FOOD. Oh how I love thee! Now that I'm pregnant with twins, I have an extra special love-hate relationship with food :).
For today, we have pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. You can get the recipe I used here.
But for now, here's week 16.
"My energy has come back some what and I've made a point of doing everything I can do now for your welcome to the world before I get so big I can't do anything at all. I'm slowly collecting baby things: clothes, cloth diapers, a changing dresser, a handmade mobile, ideas...I've put off the knitting until the time comes when the only thing I'll be able to do is knit. I know that time will come. For I while, I thought I was feeling your little feeties fluttering in the deep dark belly. But I haven't felt you in a while, which means, it probably wasn't you. I said to your dad the other night that I have some moments when I feel like I'm ready to meet you...NOW. He took a moment to give me a funny look and express that he was glad that we still had about 5 months to go. I am too, but I'm ready too."