July 10, 2012

Pinterest Challenge: I Heart U Alphabet Art

I kept looking for different ideas for displaying the alphabet in nurseries. When I saw these cute I ♥ U alphabet ideas, I knew it was something that I had to recreate for Giuliana's room and hang in the reading nook I'm in the process of creating.
1) Anna C: http://pinterest.com/pin/29062360065507057/
2) Hopscotch Haiku: http://pinterest.com/pin/121949102380538295/
3) A L-Sand: http://pinterest.com/pin/236509417901639621/
4) Colleen Tolliver: http://pinterest.com/pin/31032684901873814/

Cute, right? And when would be a better time to share then the Summer Pinterest Challenge? :)

The DIY link-up brain-child of Katie and Sherry? Count me in!

To make my alphabet art, I used an Ung-Drill frame that my brother and his girlfriend had given me as a gift last year.
It was so easy- the colors in G's room are pink and brown, so I busted out the paint and made the frame pink. I also bought some wood letters and painted them brown- except for the I and the U which I painted the same pink as the frame. I also painted a wooden heart pink to use in place of the letter O. Then I arranged and rearranged the letters on some recycled wrapping paper until I liked the way it all looked. 

Once I felt good about it, I glued it all down, slapped it into the frame, and ta-da!...
I love it! I'm so happy with the way it came out and I can't wait to finish the nursery and get everything hung up- update to follow!

And just because I think she's so adorable- 
I love that face!!!

Edit 7/12/12: I also hooked up with HOH!

July 9, 2012

Dear Giuliana: 1 Month

Dear Giuliana,

Yesterday was your one month birthday. You spent it getting to meet your aunts and uncles on the Rodner side of your family at Grandma and Grandpa's house. Everyone loves you and thinks you're beautiful. (Naturally!)

This past month has gone by incredibly fast and it blows my mind to think that you're actually still supposed to be in my belly for 2 more days!

Your birth was really scary at first- dad and I weren't sure if you were going to have any health problems and how severe they might be. You still seem to choke a little sometimes while you're eating- and that makes me hold my breath- but you cough and sputter for a bit and then all you want is to continue eating. It scares me, but your doctor says he likes the fact that you can clear your own throat and he would be more worried if you never choked while eating. So here you are now, 4 weeks old, growing and strong, and our healthy baby girl!

Now that the worry is (mostly) over, I am truly enjoying the fact that you came so early. Don't get me wrong, you're a lot of work! Sometimes I feel like all I do is change diapers and wash dishes and do laundry... not my favorite tasks. And you'll kill me when you're a teenager for putting this out there, but you've already thrown up on me (4 or 5 times), pooped on dad (3 or 4 times!), and showered us both with pee... we're still learning this diaper changing thing. But it's all worth it.

Sometimes I just sit with you in my arms and I stare at you. Sometimes you're seeping, sometimes you're awake. But I can watch you for hours- hours that make time go by so fast. The hours have turned into days that have turned into weeks. While I hold you, I like to feel your lungs expand in your chest as I watch your little belly go up and down while you breathe. It amazes me that dad and I created you and sometimes I get so overwhelmed with emotion that I cry. I cry tears of joy because I feel so lucky to have you in my arms. You look like a perfect little doll with perfect, chubby, rosy cheeks that I can't help but constantly kiss. Then you'll smile or open your eyes or grunt, and each time, I think it's the most adorable thing I have ever seen.

 I have been filled with an unconditional love for you and I didn't think was possible to develop such a deep love so fast. I know most of it is still your reflexes, but when I hold you face to face, you wrap your little arms tightly to my shoulders with a little Giuliana hug. While I'm feeding you, you wrap your hand around my finger.

I love how small you are and I don't want to wish this time away, but I look forward to meeting the girl you will grow into. I love playing with your crazy spiky hair and think about what it will look like when you're bigger. Will it turn curly and light like mine or stay straight and dark like dad's? I love looking at your perfect face and I daydream about how beautiful you will continue to get. Your grandma is one of my best friends, and I look forward to the day that you and I can have the same relationship. I'm excited to teach you how to throw a ball, and go shopping with you, and talk about boys with you. I am so grateful to have such a perfect baby girl in my life.

I cherish this time I get to share with you. In the last month, you have shown me how strong you can be- this tiny, helpless premature infant that scared doctors before her arrival and then made them fall in love with her. An itty-bitty 5 pound creature that was hooked up to all kinds of wires and machines for her first five days of life. But now, just a few short weeks later, you've gained weight steadily (over 7 pounds now!), impressed everyone with your eating skills, and you've been lifting your head up- really, you're so strong! You were ready to be born- you were ready to show us what an incredible and resilient little person you are.

In this short time, you've also shown me how strong I can be. I have felt physical and emotional pain that I never could have imagined, but I have gotten through it. Because of you, I feel like a more powerful woman. I feel like I can get through any challenge that I come across. You have challenged me to be patient. You have challenged me to work harder with less sleep. And you have challenged me to learn (and practice) what it means to be selfless. Let's continue to challenge and teach each other.

G, you are an amazing baby girl and I am so happy that you are in our lives. I love you.