Sunday, May 30, 2010

Home is where our crib is

Wow. Things have been B-U-S-Y.  Scott and Scott (our contractors) have been working away during the day at our home to finish their part of our reno, just as fast as their hands and legs can move.  Not only are they doing a great job with the renovation details, but they are doing an excellent job dealing with my pre-baby anxiety and heightened nesting emotions (more on that later).  The demo day was probably easier than dealing with my changing moods these days. Ask Peter.

But things are really coming together, and this baby has been a real trooper as I have tried to work my way through a week of painting almost every night. Today... We finished. HOORAY! Everything we need to paint before we move in, is done. That feels great. I can feel tears of joy from my swollen feet.

You know what else we did today?!  We set up the baby’s crib. My wonderful mom and dad drove all the way from Almonte for the day to bring down a truck load of baby gear (thank you Stephanie, Brian, Jenna & Nate for the wonderful hand-me-downs that we will cherish) and to help us set it all up.  It is literally the FIRST piece of furniture in our new home. I told you the baby’s room would be my priority. The room isn’t done. It isn’t even close to be done. But having a crib set up, a change table and a rocking chair all ready and waiting makes me feel better.  THANK YOU MOM & DAD!!!


So the truth is, we were told at our last two doctor’s appointments that our baby boy is breech. At one point he was head down, but the last two appointments... He has been head up.  As time ticks by the window sort of starts to close for him to move positions but we’re of course hopeful he will continue shifting. I feel him moving... Moving like crazy, all the time. So you never know. We have an ultra-sound booked for this week to verify his position and then it’s quite possible we’re going to start preparing ourselves for what could happen if he doesn’t shift.  And that news, given to us about 3 weeks ago has had my anxiety level rising. 

It would seem this baby is going to continue to call his own shots, including his birth day (being around the anticipated due date or two weeks before), and his chosen mode of arrival into this world.

Anyway, we’re in the home stretch. Next weekend we head home to Almonte for what will be our last trip before we officially become a family of three. We’re looking forward to our first weekend in what feels like forever with out anything to do at the house.  Maybe I can get the paint out of my hair before we head home.


Monday, May 24, 2010

It has been a LONGGGGGG Weekend

A very long weekend indeed, but a very productive one.  I am actually probably too tired to blog right now, but as the fireworks sound outside our Cabbagetown apartment and the Habs/Flyers game winds into the last 2 minutes on tv, this mamma is truly BEYOND ready for bed but I would be sad if I didn’t close out this weekend with some notes on all the happened.

Friday night prep kicked off what would turn into a weekend of work for Peter and I. We made what was our first of MANY trips to Home Depot. We went to the grocery store and brought our BBQ to Baltic Ave, all in prep for what was to come this weekend.

A great deal of work was to come... Jobs and details that we need to work our way through before we move, and will never be completed without the help of family and friends. Thankfully, we were blessed to have a number of people come over the long weekend to lend us a hand.  I will admit, there was a point last week where I was so full of anxiety about everything we need to accomplish in the mere SIX WEEKS we have before out baby arrives, that I couldn’t sleep.  With each passing day this weekend, my anxiety has lessened a little bit and for the first time I think I am seeing real glimpses that 42 Baltic Avenue will one day be home.

I have special thank yous for Lisa, Lainey, Steve, Margaret, Don and Phil who all came down on Saturday to help us with a day full of painting, yard work and carpet cleaning.  And to Cedar and Seth who joined us on Sunday and helped us sand and paint our baseboards, the stairs, and install a plate rail in the baby’s room that turned out to be FAR more complicated that I anticipated. Sarah Richardson sure makes things seem more simple than they are. You were all amazing to spare a day over your long weekend to help us out!

I am covered in paint head to toe. Literally I am. I backed into a fresh painted wall today and covered my ponytail. I also ache everywhere. My energy amazed even me this weekend. I painted on ladders for hours, I washed floors on my hands and knees, and I carried boxes of cabinets to organize them (I know mom, I shouldn’t).  The truth is... In my effort to nest, I sometimes forget I am pregnant.  And then when I stop, even for 10 minutes, my body reminds me. It reminds me that no matter how urgent I feel the need to complete our nest, what will be, will be and my body has more important things going on. And probably most significant of all my realizations, when I was sitting with Peter on our back deck tonight, I was reminded that it just takes US to make it home.

Sending love out to all that helped us this weekend. And also to Josie, John and Baby Evan who had their first few days together at home this weekend.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Welcome to the world baby Fenech!

Josie and John had their baby this week!!  And could this baby be any cuter?!

I have been texting back and forth with Jos and she is doing well and their little man is filling their moments and lives with more love than they ever imagined possible. Just how it it's meant to be. She is going to be going home from the hospital tomorrow and Meliss and Lou are headed up from Toronto to visit the new family!  I really wish I could be there too. I am super sad about it. But in a couple of weeks I will be home in Almonte and will be able to squeeze my girl and meet her gorgeous little man and hopefully see a lot more family and friends too!

Sending love out to the new man in our lives (who doesn't have a name that I know of yet, but he will soon, and it will be perfect), and all my girlfriends who will be enjoying a quiet and fun weekend in Almonte. Drive safe!


Monday, May 17, 2010

Showered with love

This weekend's ongoing reno chaos and mad dash to prepare for our +1's arrival was marked by two moments of pure loveliness. The first was the pre-natal massage my wonderful husband surprised me with last week (booked for early saturday morning) and the other was the incredible shower that was hosted by Sarah & Margaret (Peter's mom and sister) in Peterborough.

We arrived to Peterborough at noon on Sunday, and were immediately greeted with this fantastic sign prepared on the Shaughnessy front lawn. Peter's mom Margaret is know for her sign making and this one was certainly one of the more elaborate ones we have seen. Undoubtedly prepared with much love and anticipation as the excitement grows for the baby's arrival.

A wonderful group of Peterborough family and friends (Peter's aunts, cousins, cousin's children, and some local friends) were present to enjoy a sunny day of laughter, chatter, delicious food, and to give our baby the most wonderful showering of Shaughnessy/Peterborough love I think we could have asked for.  The generosity of the gifts, the hugs, and the warm words of loving advice have truly touched us and have helped us get one step closer to feeling prepared for the arrival of our baby.

A special thank you to Margaret who has been preparing non-stop for Sunday's shower with the love and special attention to detail only a grandma knows and feels. We appreciate very much all the work and details that you put together to make such a beautiful party happen in your home.  And also to Sarah who did not miss a single detail in her preparation for this day. Every detail filled with her love...  check out those fruit shapes on the skewers!! I think you inspired everyone, but especially the three of us.

We love you very much and this baby can't wait to meet you all!


Thursday, May 13, 2010

I love my husband

I am feeling emotional today... and while I am not sure if that makes today any different than the other 32 weeks of pregnancy I have experienced, I just wanted to say how much I love my husband. He has changed my life in so many positive ways. I couldn't be more excited to be building a home and a family with him. I can't wait for what life brings our way. xoxoxo

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

And the swelling and pelvic pain begins...

So, ever since I posted a blog entry a couple of weeks ago about how great I was feeling and perhaps even may have even bragged about wearing heels still and that my rings still coming on and off with ease...  I haven’t felt so great.  I shouldn’t have tempted fate. I know better. Because slowly, over the last couple of weeks I have been noticing some pretty big changes in my body, my energy, and a lot of swelling and aches that just weren’t there before. Is this what the last 8 weeks are going to be like? Is the home stretch meant to be painful?

My biggest complaint these days is the pelvic pressure and pain I have been experiencing since Sunday.  It caught me by surprise. I was expecting some soreness, but not sore ‘there’.  What I was expecting was some common everyday swelling. You know, swollen feet and hands... (which I also have),  but pelvic pain wasn’t on my list of upcoming adventures.  So given my next doctors appointment isn’t until this Friday I am doing some self diagnosing and I am pretty sure what I am experiencing is nothing to be too concerned about given the Internet says it’s “common”.  Common for the unlucky ones that is. 

Apparently there are two major causes of pelvic pain & pressure during pregnancy. An expanding uterus presses on your pelvis, causing pain and pressure. This happens as pregnancy moves on, and the baby becomes larger  (our little guy is supposedly weighing in at about 3 1/4 pounds) and moves deeper and deeper into your pelvic area. Basically it feels like someone is pushing from the inside on my pelvis. Pushing hard. Amazing.

And if that wasn’t enough, the second major cause of pelvic pain & pressure during pregnancy is the stretching of ligaments. As the ligaments that support your uterus thin and stretch, they can cause sharp, almost stabbing pains on the side of your pelvis. This pain can stretch all the way down to the thighs. The sciatic nerve may also be crowded, causing a painful or sometimes a numb feeling in this area as well.  For real. These are the special details no one shares about pregnancy.

How am I supposed to move and paint and decorate and finish MANY work details and be a pleasant loving wife when something is crowding my sciatic nerve and causing sharp stabbing pains and numbness I ask you?  No really, I am asking you..?

Anyway, aside from the pressure I am feeling ‘inside’, we’re actually moving along on other things on the ‘outside’ quite well. Next update will be about the renos!


Sunday, May 9, 2010

Making a house a home

And let it begin...

Home Ownership.  So, we get our house keys tomorrow night from our lawyers and the ball will officially be rolling.  I honestly never thought this day would come. Today is the last night Peter and I have never owned a home.

So it occurred to me that I haven’t really told you much about my plans for the baby’s room besides little details here and there.  As soon as I get in the door of our house, it’s my first priority.  Which is probably silly given the baby will sleep in a bassinet like everyone tells me for a while, but I want it done.  And as Peter will tell you, when I want something done, there is not much sense reasoning with me.

So way back when I was in Los Angeles in the VERY early spring I was inspired by the sun that I missed so desperately and a pottery barn nursery bedding sale. If I had a home at that very moment, the baby’s room would be yellow, and his bedding would have the cutest and softest farm animals to keep him company while he sleeps.  But... As always the case with me, if you give me too much time to think about something instead of just DOING it, I will change my mind. So I am no longer painting the baby’s room yellow and I sold all the Pottery Barn bedding I bought in LA on craigslist.

And now I am inspired by blue.  Truly, blue has always been my favourite colour. I gravitate to it. Navy blues, aqua blues, turquoises, gorgeous royal blues, Maple Leaf Blue :) ... And a blue sky makes me just as happy as a sunny sky does.  And they go well together.  So the baby’s room is going to be a wonderful mixture of blue tones.

The baby’s bedding quilt that I have replaced since selling the original (which I will be honest, when I found this it made me want to change EVERYTHING. It reminded me of a quilt Helen would have made. It made me happy to think of her having a part of the baby's room).  So the quilt, together with some fabric I bought for some throw pillows, and some fabric I am using for a roman blind (not pictured)  are my colour inspirations. You might recognize the polka dot fabric from my sewing classes. I used the same fabric for a zippered pouch (and bought far too much of it). 

Coincidentally, Sarah Richardson unbeknownst to me totally stole my idea and also used the SAME fabric in a nursery she decorated (two years ago). :)  So, she has given me my inspiration for the walls.  The walls will be a delicious cream colour, complimented by a 3 ft blue border around the ceiling, separated by a white piece base boarding or plate rail.   And of course you have seen the high boy we’re refinishing and I have other details up my sleeve for decoration... But that will have to wait for the reveal.

I can’t wait to get started.

Oh... and what I HAVE STARTED is a shower curtain for our bathroom.  I had NO IDEA that matching patterns when you're sewing two pieces of fabric together would be this difficult. But... I am happy to say the hard part is done. I just have to hem it now with a band of material I bought for the bottom and put some grommets in for the curtain rings.  Isn't it cute?!  I can't wait to see it wrapped around our claw foot tub. Coincidentally, I also can't wait to get IN our claw foot bathtub. A year living with only a shower is long enough.

Until tomorrow. OX

Saturday, May 8, 2010

A very T-I-R-E-D appreciation for Moms

Wow... 9pm and it’s lights out. While 9pm is in fact not a record for the earliest I have put myself to bed while pregnant (sadly, it’s not even close), I have quite literally already fallen asleep at least a half dozen times today. It’s been a BUSY couple of days.

Mom & Steph arrived into Toronto for a visit late Thursday night with Jenna and Nate in tow. Wide eyed and giggly as they were (up WELL PAST their bedtime of 630-7pm), I picked the four of them up at 10:45pm in front of Union Station. I took one look at my sister and was happy I had stopped at the liquor store and splurged on some nice wine for her. She too was VERY happy for the wine, but particularly grateful for my mom who decided just a few weeks ago that Stephanie was overly ambitious (MAJORLY ambitious) to think she could go it alone with her two year old and a four year old on an evening train from Smith Falls to Toronto. Alone = Crazy. One glass of wine down... And I believe she was only able to mutter this... “Had I been alone, I would have been off in Kingston”.  God bless her for being a brave mom. Very brave.

My niece and nephew are the two biggest loves of my life to date, aside from Peter of course.  They have boundless energy, boundless love, say the funniest things, and god they are cute. Super cute. But for the holy love of sweet christ are they busy.   And in a 800 square ft apartment, on a couple of rainy cold days in Toronto, two kids completely off their schedule having stayed up HOURS past their bedtime and up at 6am the next day... Well, you can imagine that I was simply no match for them. 7 1/2 months of pregnancy showed it’s true colours.  EXHAUSTION.

But we had fun. Lots of fun!!! And I am super glad they came down for a visit. Time is ticking by, and as I approach 32 weeks pregnant moments like we had over the last 48 hours are truly going to be few and far between. Besides being home in June for Adam & Kelly’s stag and doe and my shower, this will be one of the last times I see my family before the big BIRTH DAY. And if I am super honest, we (and by we, I mostly mean me), needed a distraction from the self absorption of our own lives (pregnancy, baby prep, house prep, baby prep, mat leave prep, reno prep, house prep, house prep, house prep... etc etc etc).

And that I got.

So what did we get up to??  Well, let’s see. We watched two movies (like 3 times each), we visited Riverdale Farm (Nate did that twice too), we went to the Science Center (which was super fun), we ate burgers, we ate banana pancakes, we ate grill cheese sandwiches, we went to the park, we painted, we coloured, we sang and danced, we listened to Peter play guitar, we listened to records, we slept (sort of), and we drank coffee and wine. Lots of coffee and wine (well, I didn’t drink wine, but I dreamt of drinking wine).

I didn’t say it to my mom and sister while they were here, but I hope they both know... On the eve of Mother’s Day, that I love them very much, and they are my two biggest inspirations as I grow closer and closer to becoming a mom to my very own.  Thank you for being here for me and thank you for making the trip to see us. Now lights out.

Happy Mother’s Day!!!
This song is for my niece and nephew.

K, P and our +1

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Building a nest

And here is begins... What begins you ask?  Nesting.  Horray!!!

This week will mark the official signing of the documents that will symbolize (legally) the final step in us owning 42 Baltic Avenue.  We meet our lawyers on Thursday, and if all goes as planned (cross your fingers), we will have our keys a week from tomorrow (May 10th), and start our planned demolition and renos May 11th.  Tick. Tock.

Speaking of time ticking away, our weekend was jammed pack yet again with house details, reno details, moving details, Josie’s wonderful baby shower, and a yummy dinner club dinner too!

And today... Despite the weather warning, Peter and I decided to venture out to do something we have been dying to do forever. An Antique hunt.  And oh what a hunt it was.

Since deciding to buy a house I have of course become absolutely addicted to HGTV.  Peter and I endlessly watch house hunters, property virgins, DIYers, Sarah’s House, Holmes on Holmes, Flip This... And the list goes on. The more we watch, the more ideas we get for our own particular style which my ever so stylish friend Lou has helped us name, it’s a modern farm house mixed with a few touches of shabby chic (wait until you see the gorgeous wide plank barn board hardwood we’re putting in).

So, one of the wonderful things about living in Toronto is being a close proximity to all the shops and antique fairs that many of the designers on HGTV use for their renos.  Sarah Richardson is a name you all know... But where she is able to constantly find dirt cheap deals on fabulous antiques, accents, and amazing pieces of furniture that she simply paints and adds some elbow grease and new hardware to, probably not.

And here began our Antique hunt.   We need some stuff for the house, and with the renos and some things being a bit more than we had planned... We need some deals. So, I have spent the last couple of weeks searching through blogs, the HGTV website, and Sarah’s own design site to put together a list of the “must” visit antique fairs and antique stores. You know, the ones far far away from Queen Street in Toronto... In hopes of finding the bargain prices Sarah does.

Jack Pot.

Today Peter and I headed to a huge antique market outside of Guelph in search of a dresser for the baby’s room and whatever else we may stumble upon for the house.  We were not disappointed. We found the cutest solid oak high boy dresser that even has it’s own hat box, a shabby chic mirror with a separate matching hook piece for the front door and a bright yellow school bus sign that we just couldn’t leave behind. It’s going to go in the baby’s room.  The best part is... All of this cost us less than $200.00!!!! Believe it.  Oh... And we met a very talented furniture maker who more than likely is going to help us with a harvest table sometime down the road... When we sell my black high top.

So our first nesting project has begun.  We’re going to refinish the highboy. Today we started simply with some good cleaning and prep before we sand. I washed the inside and out with Murphy’s Oil while Peter did some work on the drawers outside. It might not look like much right now, but it’s solid oak... It just has to be gorgeous.

So. Much. Fun.

PS. I ache everywhere.