Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The One I Love

Three years ago today I married my best friend. This year, we already got the most perfect anniversary gift.
Good thing too, because otherwise I would have no idea what to get Blake.
CVS at 56th and Illinois has a terrible card selection.
For those of you we weren't lucky enough to have with us on that day...










We said our vows before a few hundred friends and family members. 
We were blessed by a priest from my church and a minister from Blake's.
We visited my mom's grave and the sun was shining.













We had pictures taken with our dearest friends and siblings in downtown Cincinnati.

 

We ate (or at least I did) wonderful food.
We drank (or at least Blake did) whatever we wanted.
We shared a piece of a gorgeous cake.

  

We danced to a David Gray song that most people think is about death, soldiers, heaven, whatever.
We didn't think about the song that hard.
We chose it for the tune and the parts about love that get stuck in our heads.
It's stuck in my head right now.



Gonna close my eyes
Girl and watch you go
Running through this life darling
Like a field of snow
As the tracer glides
In its graceful arc
Send a little prayer out to ya
'cross the falling dark

Tell the repo man
And the stars above
You're the one I love

Perfect summers night
Not a wind that breathes
Just the bullets whispering gentle
'mongst the new green leaves
There's things I might have said
Only wish I could
Now I'm leaking life faster
Then I'm leaking blood

Tell the repo man
And the stars above
You're the one I love
You're the one I love
The one I love

Don't see Elysium
Don't see no fiery hell
Just the lights up bright baby
In the bay hotel
Next wave coming in
Like an ocean roar
Won't you take my hand darling
On that old dancefloor

We can twist and shout
Do the turtle dove
And you're the one I love
You're the one I love
The one I love

Blaker, you're the one I love. 
Happy Anniversary.
Love,
Me
xoxo

Sunday, May 29, 2011

A is for Audrey!

In response to the most popular questions I've gotten since Audrey was born...

THE FACTS

THE GENDER CRISIS

  • We've known that Audrey was a baby girl since our ultrasound in January.  We decided that we would find out but that we wouldn't share the gender with anyone.  Blake and I got our stories a little mixed up from time to time so some of you knew that we knew while others believed we didn't.  I'm sorry for lying to you.  I did it to protect the innocent.  And the quality and quantity of pink in my daughter's wardrobe.
  • Our white lies were so good (or so bad) that some of you (MiMoo, Rachel...) even believed we were having a boy.  It's okay though - Audrey loves her football leggings and blue puppy dog sleep sack.
THE  NAME GAME
  • No, Audrey is not a family name.  We chose it because we wanted a name that started with a vowel and we thought it sounded classic and smart.  We also liked it because it is not over-used or super trendy.  Our back-up (in case Audrey didn't come out looking like an Audrey) was Avery.
  • Clare, on the other hand, is a family name.  It was my mother's middle name.  We do not plan on nicknaming her ACE, though it might be perfect if she turns out to be a tennis star or a volleyball player.
 CURRENT MEDICAL STATUS
  • Audrey is a healthy little girl.  Thank you, God.
  • Born at 8lbs 2 oz, Audrey was down to about 7lbs 5oz when we left the hospital.  At her check-up on Wednesday though, she was back up to 8lbs.  I'm glad she's eating well but kind of miss being able to see her beautiful jaw line when she's nursing.  We go back to the doctor's in a few days to check her weight again.  Bring on the baby fat!
  • Audrey is as long as her 2 month old cousin - 21 inches - and her fingers and toes are amazing! Definitely did not inherit that directly from me... yay for tall-ish Blake and Uncle Jim!
  • Audrey's umbilical cord fell off last night when I was changing her diaper.  She wailed for .2 seconds and I panicked that it hurt her or wasn't ready to come off.  She's fine now.  I left the little piece on the changing table part of the pack-n-play which sits at the end of our bed.  This morning, Toby had himself a little treat.  Sick. But glad he hasn't managed to get into a dirty diaper. Yet.
THE LOOKS AND ATTITUDE
  • We do not know exactly how to explain the very long hair Audrey has on her head.  Blake had hair when he was born but I haven't seen a baby photo of me for a while so I don't remember.  I'll investigate when we're at my dad's house in a few weeks. 
  • I think Audrey's mouth is mine but I'm not sure about the eyes or nose.  They don't seem to belong to either Blake or me, so maybe they are just a good mix.
  • Her ears are small and detached... I don't remember much of anything that I learned in genetics, but I do remember that detached earlobes are a dominant trait.
  • Her eyes are dark and look gray in in certain light.  It is genetically possible that they could be blue, but seems unlikely.
  • Audrey, so far, has her dad's attitude.  She is pretty low key.  She does not go from 0 to 100 in 5 seconds flat like some babies I've encountered.  It takes her a while to get loud, which I'm thankful for because it usually means that I can read the signs soon enough to meet her needs before she gets too mad.
  • She likes to be swaddled at night and sleeps best wrapped up tight.  Makes sense that she didn't want to leave the womb!  I think she'll be a sensitive cuddler.
  • She is very alert but doesn't always need to be entertained, she's content just looking around at whatever is nearby! 
MORE PHOTOS FROM THE HOSPITAL

She makes the most hilarious faces!

She finds her fingers and can often soothe herself.  Thumbsuckers unite!
 
Wearing the same shirt her daddy wore when he was born almost 30 years ago!


The jawline that has now faded into a roll!  Hope it returns when she's older!

Bright red kisser! No lipstick for this girly girl.  Just like her mom.

Up next... answers to all of the MOST asked questions... the birth. 
Readers (especially first time preggo friends) beware.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Baby, I'm Amazed

We welcomed our daughter, Audrey Clare, one week ago on May 17, 2011!


She's absolutely beautiful, makes us laugh, eats (and poops) like a champ, and is the brightest light of our lives so far.  I've never been prouder or more in love with anyone or anything. 

At 8lbz, 2oz and 20 inches long, she's almost too big for some of her "newborn" sized clothing!


Her grandparents, great grandparents, aunt, uncles and cousin are thrilled. 
Audrey with my dad (Grandpa Bob), me, and my brother (Uncle Jim).

Audrey with great-grandparents Bob and Phyllis, Blake and MiMoo.  Four generations of the Borton family!

Again with Grandpa Bob, all woombied-up.

Audrey with Blake's dad, Poppy.
While we look forward to watching her grow we also can't help but wish we could pause time and experience these new feelings of love and joy forever. 

Thank you all for your love and support during this exciting time in our lives.  We are so blessed to have such amazing friends and family.  Having Audrey in our lives would not be nearly as wonderful if we couldn't share it with all of you.

Love, Kate and Blake (and Audrey, if she knew what a blog was!)

P.S.
In upcoming posts, I'll tell you more about how amazing Audrey is, share "the birth story" and much much more!  I'm also going to need to tweak the home-page a bit!  Just bear with me on the timing!  Still figuring out the schedule-less schedule of a newborn!

Friday, May 13, 2011

If my blog were a Jeopardy round category...

You'd be taking "Better Late than Never" for $1000.

Answer
Initially calendared for May 8, 2011, these two events occurred later than expected, but still turned out okay

Question 
Alex, what are Sprout's birth and an Expanding Erdels' blog post about Kate's mom?
So, still no real news on the baby birth front.  I feel just about the same as I did on Monday, as I did a week and a half ago, shoot, as I felt, three weeks ago.  Maybe a little bigger and puffier around the ankles, but not any closer to going into labor on my own.  I am though closing in on my scheduled induction date of Monday, May 16th.  I have mixed feelings about this whole induction thing and at the end of the day would really much prefer for things to start moving along on their own...  Come on, Sprout!

Pros of induction include: knowing that Sprout WILL arrive and when; allowing family to plan; and limiting the increasing risks of things like high blood pressure, a too-big baby, meconium ingestion, and placental failure. 

Cons include: the potential for a really long and slow labor; increased monitoring which may lead to being bed-ridden, which in turn could lead to more pain and an increased desire to have an epidural (otherwise, I was thinking about trying labor without pain meds); and increased risk of needing other interventions or even a C-section.

I'm going to just take my doctor's advice on this though and if no Sprout before then, I'll be admitted on Sunday evening and hopefully have a baby by the end of the day on Monday! 

As for the other belated event... I had really good intentions of writing a lovely Mother's Day post this year.  I was thinking that it would be the perfect time and place to share my feelings about my sister-in-law Rachel becoming a mom, my mother-in-law Becky becoming a grandma, and my own impending motherhood.  I also thought it would be great to commemorate some of my feelings about my mom so that they would be preserved for Sprout.  Alas, I was too pooped out from the wedding the night before and wasted most of the day away being super lazy.  At the one moment I did feel inspired to blog, I was overcome with a wave of sadness missing my mom that could only be overcome with two cherry popsicles and avoidance.  So, no post.

I did have the energy to chat with my mother-in-law and cuddle
with Toby, though.
Today's post will not make up for the lost post and I will be sure, the next time I feel that the moment is right, to put into words all that I feel and want to share about my mom.  It doesn't have to be Mother's Day for me to do that.  In fact, it would probably be better if it weren't.  I'm afraid to say it, but Mother's Day may never have for me the same meaning that it use to because I can never get through the day without feeling a little bit sorry for myself or thinking how unfair it is that I didn't get to tell my mom that I loved her or even say good bye.  I'm sure I'll enjoy being a mom on Mother's Day for the rest of my life.  But I don't much enjoy being the child.

Love and miss you, Mom.
Kate

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mission Maggie's Wedding Accomplished!

For the last nine months or so I have bargained with Sprout and Mother Nature over just one thing... my best friend Maggie's wedding.  (I've bargained with God over other important stuff like a smooth pregnancy and healthy baby.)  You may already know this from previous posts, but Sprout's due date (May 8th) and Maggie's wedding day (May 7th) were kind of close.  Though I tried to be positive in thinking that I would be able to attend the wedding and serve in my role as Matron of Honor, I was also realistic in knowing that it may not be possible.  There were times when I considered RSVPing "no" just to avoid the disappointment,  especially since the wedding was a two hour drive away in Cincinnati.  Many people, including some of my doctors, looked at me like I was crazy when I mentioned the possibility of going to the wedding.  Others, probably sensing my sadness at the prospect of missing my best friend's wedding, encouraged me and said "maybe it will work out!"  

To all those optimists - YOU WERE RIGHT!  It did work out!


BFF's at the rehearsal dinner
Mr. and Mrs. Nate Parkhouse!
 
Making a smooth exit

Congratulations, Maggie!  I love you!
After learning at my appointment on Thursday that Sprout was not in any hurry to appear and getting an under-the-table approval from Dr. G., we made the decision to go to Cincinnati on Friday and then just see what happened.  And friends, nothing in the baby birth department happened.  I was able to attend the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner, get glammed up with the rest of the bridal party on Saturday morning, walk down the aisle wearing purple heels and a maternity dress, carry my beautiful flowers and take photos with my best friend.  I also got to eat a fantastic meal, give the toast I've been drafting in my head for over a year, and dance with both my dad and Blake.  I felt really good and the weekend was perfect.

Check out the cute cake toppers...

Slow (very slow) dancing with my dad!

My dad, me and Mary Anne

Proud Blaker ;)

High school friends
Of course, I may now pay the price for the wonderful gift of being able to attend the wedding - Sprout is STILL in no hurry to make an appearance!  I guess he or she took me seriously when I asked for patience and no drama!  The doctor noted very little progress at my appointment yesterday and I'm now just waiting for the OB nurse to call to schedule my induction date. Boo.  It won't be until the weekend though and I'm still hoping to that things will get started on their own before then... so, we'll see! 

In the meantime, please, no advice on how to get labor started.  We've heard it all and about all I can tolerate is the walking and spicy food :)  Both of which I am trying at every opportunity...

Kate



Friday, May 6, 2011

Vacant nursery seeks newborn

If you were going to judge me based on how long it's taken to post pictures of Sprout's nursery, you would be very wrong to think that I am a procrastinator in any way.  I like to get things done and NOW! 

The little turtle bank was mine
when I was little! 
View from the doorway.
That being said, in this case, I could not tackle all that had to be done on my own (I guess paint fumes and ladders are not good for preggers or unborn babies).  The nursery has been this close to being finished since, like, December, when the crib and bedding arrived.  After that, though, I had to patiently sit on my hands for what felt like an eternity and wait for Blake to have some free time when he could take care of the walls.  Then, I had to wait another eternity for him to have more free time to finish framing some of our artwork and hang it.  All along, he promised it would be done in plenty of time, and he was right!  

Of all the cute nurseries I've seen, the ones I like the best are those that fit the parents' style, fit with the rest of the house, and are filled with special details. I am not an expert at home decor by any means, but I'm pretty happy with the way Sprout's room turned out!
 
We of course went green and white, tan and brown, (gender-neutral) with just about everything.  A little floral might have crept into the guest bed throw pillows and a little brown lattice into the rug... but for the most part, the room does not read "boy" or "girl."  We did however, leave a few open spaces so that once Sprout is born, we can fill in the blanks and make sure that no one is confused :)  Case in point, the empty mobile hanger.

We also incorporated meaningful artwork.  The cloud drawing over the crib was done by my mom.  For years, it hung in my family's dining room and it reminds me of her and how much she loved art and appreciated nature. 

The farm animals that hang over the guest bed were also done by my mom.  They are woodblock carving prints and I think they were done in the 80s.  I only have the cow, rooster, and lamb, but I think that there is also a goat out there somewhere, maybe some ducks, and a black cat hangs in my dad's kitchen (which is funny because we all really don't care much for cats).  I know that neither the cloud drawing nor these prints are necessarily what you might expect to see in a nursery... but, too bad.  They make me happy and I look forward to teaching Sprout about Grandma Amy through the artwork she left behind. 

We also tried to incorporate a little whimsy into the room by including these pieces that were gifted to us by the Ivcevich family.  They are characters from Popeye the Sailor Man!  The original piece of art was a large mosaic-like sculpture that hung on the wall - the pieces we have are the four corners.  The piece was displayed at the Jacksonville Museum of Art and reminds me of how lucky we are to have so much love and support from the friends and families around us.  Info about the artist, J. Ivcevich, here.




The other important piece of art in this room?  This little tree stencil painting done by Blake :)  He painted the dresser/changing table when I was in St. Louis back in February and surprised me with the tree.  I love that he had the thought and then took the time to accomplish it - it's perfect! Who knew he was so crafty?

I also love how baby clothes hang perfectly in the dresser.  The bar that they hang on pulls out ingeniously.  The dresser was used by my brother and me for years and I rescued it from certain destruction at my dad's house.  I think my parents bought it at a garage sale in the 1980s... makes it a family heirloom I think.


Plenty of storage (for now)!
But I bet we'll need more
diapers...
Since the nursery is a little small and is going to pull double duty as a nursery/guest room, there wasn't any space for a glider or chair.  So, we put it in our massive bedroom instead.  I'm thinking it will work out perfectly for late night feedings and bedtime stories.  Plus it makes the bedroom look more like a bedroom and less like ballroom dance floor.

Luckily, there is good closet space in the nursery (though most of it is currently home to my clothes and shoes!)... 

So with that, I think we are "stuff" ready!  But, no sign of Baby Erdel arriving in the next few days!  My appointment yesterday revealed what I expected - "no progress, honey."  That's okay.  Mamma's going to Maggie's wedding!  The bags are packed though and heading to Cincinnati with us, just in case.
I know, it's only, like 48 hours in the hospital. But, I don't know what I'll feel like wearing. I know for sure though that it won't be a hospital gown.  That being said, here's to Baby Erdel arriving sometime in the next week!

Kate