Friday, December 24, 2010

Cooper's Chair

Our very aweosme coworker gave us a rocking chair that was his when he was a little boy in the 60's. It was a little water stained but sturdy as ever. We decided to paint it to match Cooper's room. Now he will have a rocking chair to read his favorite books in.

I sure to love spray paint. It is a true transformation tool.


Monday, December 20, 2010


When I got home from work today, there was a Christmas tree in our living room, filled with lights! Jory surprised me, he put it up while I was at work. He also put lights around our dining room window.

He can be pretty wonderful when he wants to. :)

I Almost Forgot...

I almost forgot to post a photo of this beautiful bassinet that was handed down to Cooper. My Grandma Anne is letting us use it in the beginning, while Cooper is small and sleeping in our room. It has been in the family for years and had over 70 babies in it.

It's an honor to use such a special piece of family history.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Nursery... My DIY Project

At long last, I am posting nursery photos. It's come a long way and I've gotten quite a bit done. There's still a little more to do, but I'm very pleased with it thus far (click on photos to enlarge).

This is the nursery a couple weeks after we moved in:

This shelf was in my bedroom when I was a little girl. It was pink. I'm not sure what the hell my mom was thinking when she painted it recently... it's a mess.

I have no idea what's going on here:


It looks like I have a basketball in my shirt:

My Grandma Sue sent Cooper this card with a letter on the back. It was so precious. I hope he always keeps this card from his Great-Grandma Sue:

I got this amazing idea from a website Tara introduced me to, In their first house they had cards hanging on a line from clothespins. I loved the idea and hunted down the perfect cards on I found these for under $10 and fell in love with the art:

Jory hand cut me some wooden stars in our shop at work, to be used to hold the strings up:

I painted them:

When I was done I had some pretty cool line holders:

I attached the line and used clothes pins to hold my cards:

I had quite a few extra cards, so I put up some cute shelves to display a few more of my favorites and to take up some of the extra wall space:

And it started all to look more complete...

I played with these Raggedy Anne and Andy dolls when I was little. Grandma Sue kept them all these years:

And the crib:

That's all for now. We still need a rug for the nursery, which is not in the budget at the moment. I am pretty happy with what we have so far and I'm pretty sure Cooper will like it too.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Prego Portraits!

My dear and very talented friend Melissa took some portraits of me, so I would have some before I got too big.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Getting Even Closer

In less than a week, I will be 8 months pregnant. This is mind blowing to me. The time has truly been flying by and I'm already starting to wish I had a little more time. I want nothing more than to hold my son... but I have started to love being pregnant and feeling him move 10+ times an hour.

Yeah, it's getting rough. Really rough. And I still have two more months to go. As cheesy and cliche as it sounds, all of the pain and exhaustion stops mattering the second Cooper moves (or rams his little foot into my kidney). As I said before, it's beyond worth it.

We had our hospital tour yesterday and it was a huge relief to see the labor and delivery department at Kaiser. It was beautiful. I expected it to be more cold, more hospital-like. It was a pleasant surprise, to say the least. The walls were painted with murals, bright and colorful. The private delivery rooms all had private showers and the were very, very comfortable. I felt safe immediately and was very at ease when I saw where our son was going to be born. The staff was incredibly sweet and I could tell that the genuinely loved their jobs. I kept looking at Jory and all I could do was smile, because this is where our baby will be born.

As I mentioned before, I'm exhausted. I slept in and took two naps today... and I'm already ready for bed at 8:45 PM. Working an 8 hour day is beyond difficult. My doctor thought it might be easier on me if I cut my day down to 7 hours, we started that last week. The extra hour of sleep seemed to make me feel a little more refreshed in the morning, but didn't really change how tired I was by the end of the day. I have 23 more days of work left and it seems surreal. That's nothing! Then, I can rest. For now, I need to keep truckin' on and work my tooshie off.

I have been unhappy with my level of activity, it's been pretty much non-existent. The absolute last thing I want to do after a long day is walk anywhere. At one point during our hospital tour I thought I was going to fall over because exhaustion. It makes exercise feel like torture, even though exercise was one of my favorite things before I got pregnant. It's also hard to not feel guilty or not feel lazy, especially when I see women exercising past their due date and my doctor tells me she went into labor on the elliptical machine. I have to remember that not all women are super women and not all women go into labor while in the gym. All I can think about is how exciting my first spin class will be next year.

So that's my update. Goodnight!

Monday, December 6, 2010


We have a new couch! We're slowly (but surely) on our way to having an adult-looking home. More to come.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Crafty Boy

Jory has become quite the carpenter around here. He has been improving our home one step at a time. He just finished making the numbers for the outside of our house, which he hand cut out of pine and then painted.

They looked so good he decided to make some for Tara and Nino next door!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Oh, Target.

It's no secret that I love Target. When I lived in San Leandro I spent more than 3 hours a week at Target. Thankfully, I have gotten quite a few Target gift cards for the baby and have been quite content ordering Cooper's things online. There's nothing better than having your goods shipped to you in three days and avoiding long lines during the Holiday Season.

The boy (who doesn't understand the need for women to nest) thinks that most of the things I'm buying are pointless. I disagree. Here are some examples of things Cooper needed, that I got from Target:

This bin-set is not only cute, it's completely functional. I'm sorry, but you can never have too much storage in your nursery. I ran out of storage room weeks before the baby shower invites were even out. Now we have a nice shelf and storage bins are the way to go:

Last time I checked, babies like to chew on things. I know he won't be teething at birth but it can't hurt to have more distractions around. Although I admit this is a little premature, they were on sale:

Everyone likes a clean baby. Since no one got the grooming kit off my registry, I decided to get one:

The Boy thinks this next one is completely unnecessary. WRONG. Babies need stimulation. And I don't want my poor son staring at the ceiling when he's laying on the ground. I want him interested and engaged with the things around him:

Yes, we got a ton of clothes for Cooper. But the one area we happened to miss out on was 6-9 month onesies. So I just got a three pack:

And last but BEST, the crib set! Cooper won't be in his crib for quite a few months, but why not get it now? Before it's unavailable online again for another 5 months?

And that is it for my Thanksgiving weekend shopping. Not half bad. I didn't buy a single thing for myself (can you believe it?) and got a lot taken care of from Now I can focus on Christmas shopping (gross).

Friday, November 26, 2010

DIY Friday

When The Boy and I moved into our place, the "needs to be repaired" list was more than two pages long. The owners of our 3 bedroom rental really didn't give a shit about out quality of living and we realized early on that we'd have to take most repairs and fix-up into our own hands. We were lucky to get new carpet (which may I add was replaced weeks after we were completely moved in) after I emailed the property management company multiple times, complaining that the cigarette burns were gross and old-cat residue was making me wheeze and the frequency of needing to use my inhaler wasn't good for my unborn child. In this case, using the pregnancy card was completely necessary.

The knobs in our kitchen were different colors and some of them were broken or missing. When we asked the repair man to replace them he brought white knobs to add to the blue ones, thus making our kitchen look even worse that it did before. Jory went to the local hardware store and purchased brand new wooden knobs and painted them himself (and then glazed). He used the paint we used on our walls, "Butter and Beans", which was color coordinated with the art hanging in the kitchen. Now all the knobs match and we are one step closer to having a pretty kitchen.



While The Boy was busy making the house pretty, I headed to our local used bookstore and purchased a used book that was my absolute favorite as a child, "Oh, the Thinks You Can Think" by Dr. Seuss. The book was on sale for $1.50 and I left very happy. When I got home I ordered another copy off (for under $3.00), so I could rip apart the used copy and frame the pictures.

Book: $1.50 Frames: Under $10

Finished product:

In all we've had a pretty successful DIY weekend. Tomorrow I plan to hunt for more DIY opportunities. I have less than a few months to get the room together and have everything settled for when Baby Cooper arrives (or before I get to uncomfortable to do this stuff).

I Heart Lemons

I offered to do dessert this Thanksgiving, even though I get tremendous anxiety when I commit to bringing dishes. I always have this huge fear of messing it up and then leaving everyone without whatever I said I'd bring. In this case, it was lemon curd marbled cheesecake.

Perhaps it's my fear of failure that makes me reluctant... but in any case, I went for it. I found a recipe on that looked easy enough for me to tackle and I went for it. Since I have had a huge lemon craving through out this whole pregnancy, I thought lemon would be good. And it gave me lots of pretty yellows to shoot with my camera.

I have decided that I love making lemon curd. It might be my favorite thing to consume. It really was incredible. Here I am making lemon curd:

The finished product:

It wasn't bad. The edges weren't beautiful but the cheesecake was pretty damn tasty. Somehow, I ended up with the leftovers. That could be bad.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Where the hell am I going to fit 3 more months of baby growing?


Saturday, November 20, 2010


How can one little guy be so damn cute?

Friday, November 19, 2010

Lovely Letters from Old Friends

My dear friend Kelly Cunningham sent me an email today that made me tear up. It was very special and I thought I would share.


Just wanted to add that I am really so happy for you. I know how much you wanted to be a Mom and now you are. The 3rd trimester is when you get to love your body most. It does things that don't seems possible. And while you waited to see any signs of pregnancy during the 1st trimester, the 3rd gives you the pay off for all that waiting. Motherhood is truely life awakening in every way. It calms you down, makes you more vulnerable but at the same time you balance that out by becoming stronger, stronger in the feminine sense; intune with the body, more connected to the spirit, stronger in the mind. Enjoy this time, be positive about your birth,prepare for the tiredness and fatigue of having a newborn, and get ready to be someone new, and better, because there is nothing else in the world like this.


Tonight has been pretty awesome and this email just topped the cake. I had a great dinner with my friend Candice, was greeted by my sweet boyfriend with fresh baked cookies, had new Mrs. Meyers cleaning products from Tara waiting in my clean kitchen, had a reduced car insurance bill waiting for me, I'm LOVING the rain, had my kitchen plumbing fixed while I was at work (hot water in the kitchen now!), Cooper is kicking up a frenzy and I got an awesome email from an awesome friend. Nights like this make me love life even more. Now I'm going to snuggle up with my boys.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I need someone to take portraits of me. Real portraits, before Cooper is born.

I would be ever-so-grateful and show my appreciation by taking portraits of you.

I am looking for a photographer, not a friend with a point-and-shoot (sorry if that sounds snotty).


Reality Check

For the last few mornings I've been waking up in the middle of the night (for various reasons) and have noticed that my right hand is throbbing and stiff. I am able to fall back asleep, yet the pain is still there when I wake up. It seems to be worse first thing in the morning, it's literally painful to open it up. This is the same hand that I broke in a car accident, the same hand I type on a 10-key with for hours on end every day, so I attribute it to a mild form of arthritis. It may be a self diagnosis, but I'm not sure what else if could be, especially with the stiffening of the joints. I figured I was a little young to be having arthritis issues and decided to try not to think about it.

A few minutes after exiting the warm bed I stumbled to the upstairs bathroom to tame my tumbleweed-like hair. As I started to part the mess of hair, I involuntarily let out a "nooooooooo!" at what I saw; my first grey hair. It was plain as day, and it wasn't just a little grey, it was plain-as-day bright grey.

By this time Jory has made his way to the base of the stairs, asking me if I was alright. The only thing I could think to say in my hormone induced frustration was "I'm falling apart. I'm an old lady at 27".

Then reality hit me. I'm not a young little spring chicken anymore. Granted, I'm not old and I'm completely active with many years of fun ahead of me... but I now am starting to realize that this is when you have to start taking care of your body, that the days of body abuse with quick recoveries are over. My body will probably not bounce back after the baby is born, it will take work now. If I'm going to stay lean I have to work with my new metabolism, which is not eat-whatever-you-want-and-remain-30-pounds, anymore. It takes exercise and discipline to stay in shape and it takes patience. Just because Jack-in-the-Box has "free taco night" doesn't mean I should take part in it. Part of me likes it and part of me wonders how the hell we become adults so fast. I feel like I was dancing until sunrise with Maggie only a couple months ago, when it reality it was 10 years ago.

After this baby is born I fully intend to jump back into my normal routine. I hope to be back in spin, walking multiple time a week and hiking as much as possible.

And I'm keeping that first gray hair to remind myself that it's important to take care of myself.

Oh, life.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

920 Centennial Avenue

Tonight my Mom moved out of her house. It was the house I grew up in, moving in at around a year-and-a-half old. All of my childhood memories were created in this house. It just hit me about 20 minutes ago; I'll never be able to go in that house again. Mix in some hormones and you have a very sad Alison.

I decided to post a few memories from 920 Centennial Avenue. There are thousands of memories from this house and I will never, ever forget it.