Sunday, November 25, 2012

2 Week Update

Nathan is 2 weeks old today. I don't think 14 days have ever gone so fast. He is still doing great, becoming more alert, and staying awake for longer periods of time. He has smiled a couple times which is super adorable.

Mommy aka me, has not been doing as well. Found out today I have a kidney infection. Very painful. Apparently they are pretty common after giving birth, yet another thing people didn't warn me about. I'm on some antibiotics so hopefully I'll be feeling better soon. My mom is here and my grandma is arriving tomorrow. It is not fun at all when you have visitors and you are sick...even if it is family. I feel like a blob, a lazy in pain blob.

So, that is us in a very small nutshell because I need to rest some more. My mom and Jason have been taking excellent care of me so don't fret my pets. Nate is doing great which is way more important to me. Now, if he would stop peeing all over the place...I know, it's not going to happen.

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and are looking forward to the Christmas/winter season! Hoping to put up Christmas decorations tomorrow!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Even though it is gloomy and rainy outside, the weather does not affect how thankful I am for all I have. It has truly been a wonderful year. My husband wasn't deployed, I graduated with my Master's, Jason graduated with his Master's, pregnant and welcomed Nathan, and moved to a new state. Those are only a few exciting events that has happened this year so far.

What else I am thankful for? My health, shelter, food, love, support, family, and friends. The tangible and intangible combined make my life wonderful. It is the small and big things that contribute to my everyday happiness and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

I can only hope everyone else is truly appreciative for all they have.

Since we have Nathan now, I will not be Black Friday shopping. This is very strange for me since I do it EVERY year. Last year I was out for over 12 hours. I loved every minute of it. I love the hustle and bustle, the people shopping for the people they love, the good deals, and the start of the Christmas/winter season. I am a little sad to not be out and about, but I also get to cuddle and snuggle with my husband and son. Also, my mom is visiting and flies in from California in the afternoon.

Maybe I will do some online shopping this year, but more importantly, I'll be spending time with family. I just love them to pieces.

Happy Thanksgiving to all and to all a full belly. :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Expectations of a Stay-at-home Mom

In just a few days my husband will be going back to work after 10 days of paternity leave. This means my status as a “stay-at-home mom” is officially going to begin. Honestly, I think I will be fine. The transition into motherhood (the whole 10 days I’ve been a mom) has been extremely smooth. Am I abnormal? I keep hearing stories of new moms not taking showers, being exhausted, and letting themselves go. Fortunately, I haven’t reached that point. Will this change when my husband goes back to work?

The expectations of a stay-at-home mom vary greatly depending on who you ask. The dad/other guardian has expectations. The new mom has expectations. Society has expectations. Other moms have expectations. There may be some overlap, but if you ask, each will give you a different answer. So…who is right? How are stay-at-home moms supposed to be, act, and dress like?

In my opinion, a stay-at-home mom has a huge job. It is tougher than you think, although, many will disagree. As for myself, I expect the best I can. Will I be perfect? Of course not. The dishes will not always be done, dinner may be late or take out, the laundry will stay in the dryer longer than it should, and I may not always wear make-up. This is okay with me. Will society or my husband think differently of me? I know for a fact my husband will think nothing less of me. He is just that great.
What really matters is you take care of your children. Play with them, read to them, let them get dirty. Don’t worry about what others think of you. This is a huge challenge, even for me. I like to be fashionable and I know I won’t always have time to put straighten my hair or accessorize my outfit. What I do know is that I will be there for my son. I will love him and make him my priority. I will make the time to make memories with him and my husband.

I am a stay-at-home mom (or soon –to-be) and will be proud of it. If you are a stay-at-home mom, be proud of yourself. And lastly, if you know a stay-at-home mom, be proud of them. This is not a post to disregard working moms because that is a whole other story and other expectations I can’t give personal experience about. All mommies  are amazing and have the best job in the world!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Week One is Done!

Seven days has already passed since Nathan has entered our lives. It has been the most amazing, loving, educational, and fun week. Nathan has been a very laid back baby (so far and knock on wood) which has made the transition into mommyhood fairly easy. Thank you, son. Mommy appreciates it more than you know. So what has been going on this week...?

Things I LOVE:
1. His little snorts when he gets hungry
2. Baby yawns
3. Baby farts. They are seriously the funniest thing EVER!
4. Cuddles on my chest
5. The way Jason talks to him
6. The way Jason asks every morning how my night was and says I am doing a great job.
7. Taking pictures of Nate.

The not so fun stuff:
1. When I am changing his diaper and he decides he would rather pee on the blinds.
2. Being awake from 10pm-1am. Right when it is time to go to bed, he wants to be super alert and awake.
3. Sleeping on the couch instead of my bed so Jason can get some sleep.

There are WAY more things I love and even the not so fun stuff isn't that bad. I wouldn't trade it for the world.

We also went on our first outing. Daddy needed some wood from Lowes for a project he is doing and I needed a couple of things from Target, so off we went. He slept the entire time!

One week old and I know there are just so many more fun memories in the making.

Hope everyone has had a great week like the Kappes family has.
Next big events: Thanksgiving and Grandma Teresa comes to visit in a week!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Nathan is Here!!

11-11-12. A day I will never forget. It’s Veteran’s Day. A day which has meaning not only because I am married to a U.S. Army Soldier, but also the day I became a mom.
Here is the birth story of my son, Nathan Taylor Kappes.

Around 6pm on November 10th, I am texting a friend about her cleaning out her garage and getting organized. Then I started having some dull back pain. As I text her my back is starting to hurt, her immediate response is, “Your ass is in labor!” I didn’t believe her and we start joking about how Jason, my husband, isn’t going to be able to go to the Veteran’s Day event scheduled the next day. I text her I’ll see how the night goes, but I really didn’t think too much of it. Jason and I had tilapia fish tacos and the night continued. Until about 10pm…

This is when I knew something was up, but still didn’t want to make a huge deal over the pain. Jason downloaded a “contraction app” on my phone so we could start timing. My pain was lasting about 30-45 seconds every 3-4 ½ minutes. As a first time mom I had no idea what a contraction felt like or what the pain would really consist of. I was walking around my house, stopping to breathe, still not believing I was in labor. Around midnight, Jason called the hospital to see if we should come in or wait it out. He explained the pain and they said they would call my doctor.
As we are waiting for the phone call back, we start to pack the car, take out the trash, little things to potentially be on our way. We got the okay from the doctor and it suddenly got real to me. I started to cry, but Jason was quick to calm my nerves and off we went.

We arrived at the hospital around 1:30am. Oh, and let me just point out…Iowa has really bumpy roads. Not cool while in pain. Anyways, they checked us in and I was wheel chaired up to Labor and Delivery. The checked me and said I was already 6 centimeters! “You are definitely in labor!” said the nurse. I’m thinking, thank goodness, because this hurts!
 I get all set up in a labor room with an IV, monitors, the whole nine yards. Contractions were getting more intense and the bed post was my gripping friend to get through them. The nurse explained my pain options…either a low dosage of something (can’t remember the name) through my IV or an epidural. I told her I didn’t need anything yet. I figured I would be there for awhile so suck it up for when the real pain starts.

Real pain, in my opinion, had kicked into full gear, but still didn’t think I needed an epidural. I asked/told Jason to tell the nurse I would take the low dosage through the IV. She came to check me. “Well, it’s too late. You are 10 centimeters.” What!!?? The option is off the table and I’m ready to have a baby!? The doctor came in and told me I could push when I was ready and gave me what seems like simple instructions.
1. Hold legs.

2. Hold breath and count to 10.
3. Push.

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 two times.

These are not simple directions to follow when you have never given birth, are in pain, and have to multitask.
After 30 minutes of pushing…Nathan Taylor Kappes had entered the world (with no drugs!). Born on November 11, 2012 at 4:30am (only 3 hours in the hospital!) and weighing in at 7lbs, 4oz and 19 ¾ inches long. He has tons of hair and my little Veteran’s baby is now my world.

Going through a 15 month deployment and then a year deployment has made Veteran’s day very meaningful and now to have a son born on this day makes it that much more amazing. I am completely in love with my little family of three and can’t wait to watch our son grow.
A very special thanks to my husband, Jason. He was a wonderful labor coach, has been an amazing husband and best friend, and now starting the journey of being a dad. I did not do this alone and it is only fair to give him credit where credit is deserved.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

39 Weeks and Counting...

One week left until my due date and I am definitely counting down the days. I am at the point when I'm considering all the old wives tales. I ate pineapple and made extra spicy chili yesterday. I've been told to do other methods to get the ball rolling on this whole labor situation. I haven't tried the labor cookies, the castor oil, the primrose pills. I have thought about it though. Even though they seem a little ridiculous, the thought is still there. Nature will hopefully take its course sooner than later...the anticipation and unknowns are killin' me smalls.

I also have this strange little cheer in my head when I think about going past my due date.

Nate Nate, Don't be late
Don't be late for your very important date.

Corny. You don't have to tell me. I sing it in my head daily. It's weird.

I'm trying to keep myself busy with little crafts, but the days seem so long and it feels like I'll be pregnant forever. I know he will be here before I know it. Then the real fun begins. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with my blog and update everyone on the joys and craziness of motherhood.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Homemade Coasters

As promised, here is how I made coasters using my homemade mod podge. I have been waiting all day I'm sure to read this and get started on your own. :)

I wanted to do a set of 4 since that is usually how many coasters come in a set. I also wanted to get 4 in case I messed up.

What did I buy?
1. Ceramic tiles from Lowe's (in the bathroom section)- they were only 16 cents!!
2. Scrapbook paper- I got mine at Hobby Lobby. 2 pieces for .50 cents.
*I already have scrapbook paper, but I was just so excited to be making them that they needed new paper. I would've saved half a dollar, but oh well.

That's it...I bought 4 tiles and 2 pieces of paper = $1.14
*Lowe's gives a 10% military discount so it was actually cheaper than that!

The stuff I had on hand?
1. Homemade mod podge
2. Brush

There is seriously nothing difficult about this project except deciding which patterns you what to use on your coasters.

1. Measure and cut scrapbook paper to the size you want. Cover the entire tile or leave a border. I did both to compare.
2. Place tile on a surface you don't care about (in case mod podge gets on it)
3.  Brush a layer of mod podge on the tile
4. Place the scrapbook paper on the tile
5. Brush another layer of mod podge
6. Let it dry for 1-2 hours
7. Brush another layer of mod podge.
8. Let dry overnight
9. Add felt circles on the bottom (optional. I haven't done this yet, but if I give them as gifts I will)


I think I like the ones that have a border instead of covering the whole tile. Both ways are cute though. These might be gifts to give the neighbors this Christmas. Maybe with coffee cups and some hot chocolate?

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Homemade Mod Podge

There are SO many crafts I have seen using mod podge! In the store is runs from $5-10 bucks. I have wanted to buy it every time I am in Joann Fabrics or Michael's, but never could shell out the extra money. Cheap...I know. I didn't know if I was going to use it that much, if it actually worked, or if I wanted to just make my own.

When I started looking up recipes/instructions on how to make it, I couldn't believe how simple it was. Just equal parts of glue an water? way, this can't be right. I have put off making this simple, yet mind boggling concoction until today. I finally got the guts to mix the most simple and cheap ingredients together.

The result: I did it! It was easy and didn't make a mess (which I read in some blogs that it did). I don't know what those peeps were doing while they mixed, but they must have gotten their groove on to make a mess.

I didn't buy anything to make it because I had everything at home. Hopefully you will have at least one of the three items or you shouldn't even be reading should be getting your water hooked up.

All you need is glue (white glue, such as, Elmer's), water, and some type of jar with a lid (I used a mason jar).
**DO NOT BUY A JAR! Find something you have around the house. You will most likely find it in the kitchen. Baby food jars, salsa jar, anything you have in the kitchen that is glass and has a lid. Why waste the money?

I was super lucky because the mason jar I had had the measurements on the side. You could definitely eyeball it though. I used the entire container of glue, which was 4 oz then filled the jar up to the 8oz mark with water. So...4 oz glue, 4 oz water.
The 4oz of glue (my mason jar is like 32oz so don't let the amount fool you; 4 oz will be enough)
Close up of the 4 oz of glue
Added water, not shaken yet.

Put the lid on a shake what your momma gave ya! Bam...mod podge done. Took about 5 minutes total.

I labeled it with an address label and added it to my desk full of crafts! My first projct using mod podge...coasters. Another easy and cheap project...tutorial coming soon to a blog near you. Meaning this blog. Tomorrow.

Personalized Fall Wreath

Halloween is over and we are now into November. Before we know will be Christmas.

In my opinion, Fall/Thanksgiving decor is much more pretty and inviting than Halloween. I had a small "welcome"sign hanging on our door for Halloween, but pretty much everything else is Fall-ish or Thanksgiving-ish. November 1st came and that Halloween sign was down. I wanted a pretty Fall wreath to hang, so I went to shop for the materials.

What did I get?
1. Yarn: 4 Fall colors- Big Lots surprisingly for $1 each.
2. Foam pipe insulation: Lowe's for $1.18. Here is a link to Home Depot so you know what to look for because I had no idea what the name of this was. It was 6ft, so I cut it in half to have enough for 2 wreaths.
It's in the plumbing section of Lowe's or Home Depot
3. Wooden letter: Walmart for 2.27 (in arts and crafts section)
4. Pine cone decor: Walmart for 1.47 (in Xmas section)
It has a little clip in the back.
Those were the items I actually had to go out to purchase. A total of about $10 bucks, but I have extra yarn and foam pipe leftover for another project.
Other items I used but had on hand:
1. Gold spray paint for wood letter. I would've loved to have the deep purple color, but I knew I had the gold, so I went for the cheaper option.
2. Packing tape (can also use duck tape)
3. Ribbon to hang on door
Ok, let's get started.
Step 1: Cut the foam pipe in half or however big you want your wreath to be.
Step 2: Tape the 2 ends together. It might look a little disfigured and not like a circle, but once you tape it you can manipulate it better.
Step 3: Get the yarn and figure out the pattern you want.
Step 4: Tie a piece of the yarn in a knot and start wrapping the yarn around the pipe. I was using 4 different colors so I wrapped about 2 inches of each color.
**To change color: tie the next color to the previous and tape down**
**Keep the yarn close or you will have a huge tangled mess!!**

Step 5: When you get to the end of wrapping, tuck the yarn into itself and tie into a knot in the back.
Step 6: Add the decor! I added the pinecones first. I was originally going to pin it using the pin attached to it, but it looked sloppy. I ended up literally stabbing it into the foam itself. Then tie the wood letter with yarn.

Step 7: Add the ribbon to hang and you are done!

The wrapping of the yarn took the most time...about an hour. It would be quicker if you used less colors and/or bigger sections.

I am planning on doing a Christmas one with my leftover pipe. Super easy, cheap, and personalized. They would make great gifts, too! If someone has a favorite sports team, you could do their colors. It could be a Christmas present, housewarming gift, wedding present, etc.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Hospital Bag is Packed!

11 days until my due date!! I think he will be late, but I still want to be ready. I've asked many people want the essentials were to have in the diaper bag, what I need, and what Jason would need when we head to the hospital. There was a lot of answers and opinions...which I expected. I took every one's advice and got to packing.

What is in Nathan's diaper bag?
1. Diapers: I know the hospital has diapers, but we are using cloth and I really want to start in the hospital if possible. Crossing my fingers they fit the lil' guy.
2. Going home outfit: onesie, pants, socks, mittens, beanie
3. Two extra outfits: for pictures and in case going home outfit is too small (pants, socks, mittens, beanies)
4: Three sleepers
5. One jacket
6. Extra onesies
7. Baby Ugg (fake) boots
8. One receiving blanket
9. Scarf: because it's cold and for pictures
10: Two pacifiers

I'm sure this is way too much, but it fits all in the diaper bag.
Organized to make sure I have everything.

What is in mommy and daddy's bag?
Dad's stuff:
1. Pajamas
2. Pair of pants
3. Pair of shorts
4. Two shirts
5. Two pairs of socks and boxers
Mom's stuff:
1. Going home outfit: yoga pants, tank top, cardigan, jacket
2. Two pairs of comfy socks
3. Undies: will probably use the mesh ones I keep hearing about at the hospital though...
4. Two sports bras and One nursing bra
5. Two tanks with built in bras
6. Toiletries: shampoo, conditioner, body wash, hair ties, toothpaste, toothbrush, hair spray, mousse, face wipes, Q-tips
7. Tennis ball: to relieve back pain while in labor

This is probably another bag with way too much, but again, all this fits in one overnight duffel bag.

Last minute items and non-bag items?
1. Phones and chargers
2. Camera and charger
3. Ipod
4. Make-up bag and brush
5. Snacks
6. Kindle, books, magazine
7. Pillow: I want mine :)
8. Car seat with bundle me and blanket
9. Boppy
10. Feed cats: gotta take care of our fur babies, too
List is on our fridge.

Everything is sitting in the nursery. I'm not putting it by the front door because I don't think we will be sprinting out. Also, our cats would have a field day with all that stuff on the floor.

This is a picture of all the loot!
Can't even take a picture without those curious kitties. :)

We shall see if I packed enough, too much, necessary and/or unnecessary things. We only live 10 minutes away from the hospital, so I'm not worried if we forgot something. I'm trying to stay in a "go with the flow" mentality. Trying is the key word. I am fighting the urge to look in the diaper bag and our bag multiple times a day to make sure we have everything.