31 January 2012

Everyday of January

Goodbye January!
It's been a blast.

30 January 2012

28 Weeks

How far along? 28 week, 3 days
Maternity clothes? Good Old maternity jeans and my large PJ pants or sweatpants when I'm just hanging aroudn the house.
Stretch marks? None
Sleep: Good, besides getting up 3 times a night to pee.
Best moment this week: Had a nice relaxing week which feels good!
Miss Anything? Being comfortable!!
Movement: Lots of moving and kicking (ouch!)
Food cravings: Chocolates/sweets
Anything making you queasy or sick: Morning sickness decided to give me a rest this week :) 
Have you started to show yet: yes
Labour Signs: None, suppost to be feeling the braxton hicks around now.
Belly Button in or out? Becoming more shallow.
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Sometimes I can get irritated pretty easily... (sorry husband)
Looking forward to: Getting going in the nursery (we're painting today)

27 January 2012

Third Trimester Thoughts

Today I welcome my third trimester.

With the final days approaching I can't help but be cliche in saying that it feels like only yesterday that I took a pregnancy test at 2am and found myself staring down at 2 pink lines and clasping my mouth in disbelief.
On the other hand, I hardly remember ever not being pregnant and that big day that I can finally look into the eyes of this "alien" who's been kicking me in the ribs all week, can't come soon enough.

I've come a long way in the past 6 months and the emotions I have found myself going through have been a non-stop roller coaster ride. I'm not going to deny being terrified those first weeks after we found out that I was pregnant. We hadn't quite planned for this to happen so soon and just only a few months into our marriage and it was time to give up the care-free lifestyle, because things had just become serious.

My first thoughts were:
 "Where on earth are we going to live?"
"How are we ever going to be able to support a child?" and
"What ever happened to our 2 year plan?"
Like most people (I'm sure) I imagined that by the time I had kids I would be living in a big house, driving a reliable car, college educated and have a steady career. Instead, there I was in a tiny studio apartment, a permanent "check engine" light glowing, on my 7th "gap year" and working a job that I had never pictured myself doing in the first place.
My life has always been one reality TV worthy adventure, so I don't know why I was so surprised when things didn't work out completely "text book" worthy.

I am so thankful that those earlier feelings of fear and anxiety have totally lifted over the last half year. I've decided that there never really is a "perfect time" to have a baby because you will never totally feel like you are financially secure or emotionally prepared enough or by the time you do feel like you are absolutely ready, your body has already given up on you and your days of fertility are just a distant memory.

It has not been easy, nor is it going to get any easier. Rent is totally outrageous, my car is still a piece of shit garbage and my work hours have been cut which makes saving any money totally out of the question.
So why do I feel so ready to become a parent?
I just know that everything is going to be okay. My supportive and loving husband, a supportive family (no matter how near or far) and the promise of a love so HUGE that unconditional does not even begin to describe it. 
I am so blessed with everything that I do have in my life and it makes me feel secure and prepared to give this little girl the best life I can possibly give her.

25 January 2012

Little and pink

Aren't baby clothes just the cutest things ever? 
Especially little girl clothes.
Its hard to imagine that there is soon going to be a tiny little body to fill all the adorable outfits that I've accumulated so far. 
I'm so excited for all things pink and sparkly with ribbons and bows.

24 January 2012

Is it too early to decorate for Valentine's Day?

I don't think so!

Ever since moving to the new place, I decided that I want to be one of those wreath people. You know, those people who don't just stick to the standard Christmas wreath once a year, but the ones with a wreath for every occasion. Valentine's Day, St Patrick's Day, Spring, Fall etc. etc.
And since this is my year of DIY, I'm making them all myself.

First things first, you are going to need to gather supplies. I headed to Michaels for all of mine.

I actually bought the "love" sign more then a year ago and as you can see, it has been through a bit of a rough time. I used the paint and some ribbon to decorate the sign and it came out looking like new.  

Next, it is time to start wrapping yarn around the wreath. I hot-glued the start of the ball of yarn to the wreath and just wound it around and around (and around) making sure that it was tight and there were no gaps.

At the end of all that wrapping, hot glue the end of your yarn to the wreath (making sure you put the join on the backside) and you should have something that looks like this:

Next is the fun part. Glue your decorations onto your wreath. (I added my newly painted love sign and a pink feather)

Add a ribbon to the top of your wreath and hang on your door!

23 January 2012

27 weeks

How far along? 27 week, 3 days
Maternity clothes? Maternity Jeans and my regular shirts. Shirts are starting to get a little tight!
Stretch marks? None
Sleep: Back to a regular routine and managing to actually sleep in a little on the weekends.
Best moment this week: Almost done with all the painting around the apartment. Just have the baby's room left to paint.
Miss Anything? Comfort is becoming a luxury, so I miss the days of no rib/back/butt pain.
Movement: Still moving a lot when she wakes up
Food cravings: None really
Anything making you queasy or sick: My friend, Morning Sickness, is back! BLEH!
Have you started to show yet: yes
Labour Signs: None
Belly Button in or out? Becoming more shallow.
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Good mood!
Looking forward to: Weirdly enough, I'm looking forward to my glucose test next week. Even though there is going to be a needle involved, I love my doctor check ups and seeing how baby is progressing.

19 January 2012

Not something you see everyday

Here is a little video I took of my husband getting up close and personal with some of our long-necked friends on our trip to South Africa
It was so cool to seeing my husband get to experience some real African wildlife. 

18 January 2012

And the apartment makeover begins...

When we moved into our new apartment last month we went from living in a teeny tiny  studio apartment to suddenly having a bigger space to fill, blank walls to decorate and very little furniture.

With my 3rd trimester fast approaching, it is really important that I get most of the decorating done before the baby arrives because I know how crazy life is going to become after that. Lucky for me I really love it and have been having so much fun coming up with designs for our new space, picking out furniture and thinking of color schemes. 

Although there are still a couple of things to be done, I couldn't wait to show you the first little transformation that went down. Our Entrance Hallway.

And there it is the before picture. Pretty boring right?

We decided to give the hallway a bit of a "cleaner" look by painting over the brown walls with 2 coats of pure white paint.

Then the fun part began...
We picked up a very cool mirror on our Ikea trip this past weekend and I had a whole bunch of old picture frames with photographs and artwork from the gallery wall I had set up in our old apartment.
I decided that I wanted to do keep the gallery wall idea so I arranged them all around the mirror.

I mounted the mirror with a couple of screws to make sure it stayed put, but all of the frames are held up by Velcro picture frame hangers which makes it super easy to take down and be able to switch around the frames without much effort and without damaging the wall behind it either.

Here is the after shot of the hallway.

I added a turquoise table that I picked up on sale at Target for $40 and pot plant which I'm hoping stays alive more easily then its 2 predecessors.

I must confess, the hallway is not finished. I want to get a long hallway table to put up against the wall and something to store shoes in. But that probably won't happen for a few weeks so that is why I am sharing this post with you today.

What do you think?

The kitchen is almost done, the living room is coming along and the bedroom and nursery are just a total disaster areas. Haha! I can't wait to show you more in the upcoming weeks.

17 January 2012

First snow

There is something special about the first snow of the year. Especially when Winter is taking forever to arrive in New York.
I love it!
Come on Winter, I'm ready.

16 January 2012

26 weeks

How far along? 26 week, 3 days
Maternity clothes? Jeans, jeans, jeans! And some XL leggings thrown in for good measure.
Stretch marks? None
Sleep: Sleep has been alright. I'm back in a pattern but waking up about twice a night to use the loo.
Best moment this week: Bought paint for nursery and some little odds and ends.
Miss Anything? Being comfortable!
Movement: Still getting some very uncomfortable jabs in the ribs! She's grounded once she comes out.
Food cravings: Nothing in particular. Still loving the sugar though. 
Anything making you queasy or sick: My husband! HAHA. He had a cold that he so kindly passed onto me.
Have you started to show yet: yes
Labour Signs: None
Belly Button in or out? It's still far in but getting more shallow.
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or Moody most of the time: Had a total mental breakdown when we got lost on the way to Ikea this weekend. Total full blown crazy person alert with hystirical crying. I can laugh now, but at the time it was NOT funny.
Looking forward to: Finally getting our bed frame delivered because being on a mattress right on the floor is just not good for getting up in the morning when half your bones and muscles arn't working.

13 January 2012

Happy Weekend!

A little clue into what I will be getting up to this weekend:

Painting, painting and more painting with a trip to Ikea and Home Goods squeezed in between coats.

We have officially been "moved in" to our new apartment for just over a month and now that we are back from our trip to South Africa, it is time to get stuck in and get cleaning/organising/decorating before Baby makes her big debut and we have NO TIME for such luxuries. 

What are you getting up to?

12 January 2012

Nursery Inspiration

With only 3 months left until baby Llambok's arrival, its time to get serious about converting the spare room in our new apartment into a little baby girl nursery. 
I am planning on decorating in pink (what else?), grey and white. I also wanted some African accents and maybe some Peruvian ones too to represent what a crazy mix of cultures this little one really is. 
I am also trying to keep a tight budget, as we'll need every penny we can get for diapers, food and all those adorable outfits I've been keeping my eye on.

Here is my little inspiration board that I have put together and wanted to share with all of you.

1. Giraffe family wall decal from Single Stone Studios . This would look great in white against the grey walls and perhaps behind the crib.
2. Grey and pink all the way! Definitely painting the walls grey. I also love that they have converted a dresser into the changing table in this room. 
3. This deer head from cardboardsafari.com is so cool! I'm going to try and make my own one out of paper mache.
4. I would love to make a mobile out of paper lanterns and pom-poms to hang over the crib.
5. Fabric inspiration! Going to probably order the bumper from this etsy store.
6. This alphabet block picture is just too cute!
7. Rattan Elephant Hamper from homedecorators.com
8. Loving these shelves and the idea of hanging the clothes underneath. (Especially since the cupboard is so full already)
9. What a great idea! Hot glue random toys onto a frame and spray paint. So simple!

11 January 2012

Cape Town, South Africa

A couple days after Christmas last year we hopped on a plane and headed to the other side of South Africa to spend some time exploring one of the world's most beautiful cities, Cape Town.
My sister and her husband recently made the move from Johannesburg to The Cape and I couldn't be happier for them since that is the #1 place in South Africa that I would love to live.

A view of the city of Cape Town from on top of Table Mountain
As our plane touched down in the darkness of night we saw the fires burning in the shanty towns of this beautiful diverse city and on a morning drive the next day, we took in one of the most spectacular landscapes that I have even seen. Mountains towered high on one side of you and the sea showed off all kinds of turquoise and crystal blue waters on the other. Along the way we stopped at a harbour in Kalk Bay where we took in the aroma of fresh fish being caught and saw a baby seal begging for scraps.

Next up was a trip to the oldest wine estate in South Africa, Groot Constantia, to meet up with my cousin for lunch at "Jonkershuis". Its not every day that it states on the menu "Don't feed the baboons" and as we walked back to the car we realised why when all of a sudden a huge baboon came running past us, through the parking lot and into the vineyards.

The next morning we woke up really early to try and get tickets for a boat trip to Robben Island, but unfortunately they were all sold out for the whole week which was a little disappointing, but with such an early start on the day we decided to head to Cape Point instead. On the way, we stopped at Boulders beach to have a look at the huge colony of African penguins that call the beach their home.

Penguins at Boulders Beach
Back in the car and a few minutes later we suddenly spot a whole troop of baboons running out of a house after raiding it for apples and whatever other food they could find. The cheeky guys sat proudly on top of the roof chewing away on their newly looted treasure before being chased away by a security guard. They then sat on the side of the road right next to our car and I got to snap some pictures (through a very small gap in the window).

We finally arrived at Cape Point and within minutes of driving through the reserve we spotted ostriches, buck and even a tortoise. We caught the "Flying Dutchman" Funicular to the South Western most tip of Africa and witnessed some stunning views.

The funicular that saved my pregnant self from having to hike up to the top of the cliff.
My sister and I

The next morning, we (once again) woke up really early. This time it was because we were headed to Cape Town's main attraction, Table Mountain. Unfortunately with some strong winds hanging around, the cable car was temporarily closed. Boo! 
With our head start on the day, we changed up our itinerary and decided that a boat ride to Seal Island was a must, and after that we had lunch at an authentic fresh fish shop where Mike shared his food with the seagulls.

View from the boat
Seals, seals and more seals

Attack of the birds
After an afternoon nap we discovered that the cableway was back up and running and we quickly rushed over to the mountain before they changed their minds. We jumped into the cable car and headed 3,563 ft above sea level to the top of Table Mountain and stepped into what felt like a different world.

Table Mountain
Catching the cable car
The air was brisk and the winds were still blowing pretty strong, but there was nothing like the feeling of being at cloud level. We walked around and soaked up the views over Cape Town and were even lucky enough to come across a whole family of "dassies" (rock hyrax) who didn't seem too worried about the huge gusts of wind while they climbed bushes and nibbled on flowers.

My sister, Mike and I on top of Table Mountain
The clouds rolling in.

The next day was New Years Eve and we decided to take it easy. Around lunch time we headed into town, slurped up some milkshakes and took a drive through the cobble stoned streets of the Bo-Kaap to see the multi-coloured houses.

Later in the afternoon we went down to the Victoria & Alfred waterfront because we were planning on ringing in 2012 there as it claims to be one of the best spots to do so. Unfortunately, the crowds just got too much for us to handle and every restaurant was either full or offering a set menu at a crazy price so we did a bit of shopping, walked around for a bit and then headed back into town to find somewhere that would take us without a booking for our New Years Eve dinner.

The V&A waterfront on New Years Eve
We ended up at an Italian restaurant where I indulged in (ONLY) 1 glass of wine and probably the best steak that I have eaten in a very long time. After dinner we decided to take a drive up to the top of Signal Hill to view the city at night and we could hear all the festivities going on below us.

The view from on top of Signal Hill
Now, this is where my New Years Eve takes a bit of a turn for the lame. By about 10pm I was exhausted so we headed home and lay in bed watching back to back episodes of "Faulty Towers" (don't judge, I'm pregnant! haha). I then proceeded to fall asleep, but woke up at 11:56pm to be able to ring in the New Year. I was then fast asleep again by 12:05.

On the first day of 2012 we spent the morning at Rhodes memorial and indulged in a very yummy lunch before it was time for us to say goodbye to my sister, brother in law and the beautiful Cape as we boarded our plane back to Durban.
Rhodes Memorial