12 Dancing Princesses (in progress)

This is what I'm working on right now (and it's really fun!)

I'll post it when I'm done.

My absolute favorite pet fish


Nigel's bowl sits on an island in the middle of the kitchen and I love having him there because as I flit around the kitchen, making dinner he follows me in his bowl. When I'm over at the stove he has his little nose pressed up to the side of his bowl nearest the stove, avidly watching every move I make. When I walk to the sink he swims as quickly as he can across his bowl so that he can press his nose up to the side of the bowl closest to the sink and keep on watching me. And when I come up right next to him and chop vegetables right beside his bowl, he goes out of his mind with excitement, dancing around and fluttering his fins insanely, never taking his eyes off the shininess of the knife.  

So, naturally, since I'm so obsessed with how funny this fish is I had to take some pictures of what he is like when I make dinner next to his bowl. I was making Honey Chicken Kabobs, and they turned out pretty yummy! 

Life as a fish must be pretty boring if watching me make dinner is so completely fascinating.

I know it's weird to be so in love with a pet fish, but how could anyone not love a fish that has such an adorable grumpy face and so much personality stuffed into his little purple body?

And yes, I just posted four pictures of the same fish in one post-- he's just that cute.

Double thumbs up

The most common topic of conversation between Adam and me is Ella-- shocker, I know. We were discussing her little personality and sweet spirit that we can already just barely sense and I asked Adam what he thought Ella's reaction was when she was told that it was time for her to come down to our little family. Adam's response: he gave me a double thumbs up and a huge-o smile. That was Ella's reaction as she was about to come to earth-- pure excitement. I loved this vision of miss Ella and so I had to draw it. Ella, up in heaven, giving the thumbs up to her younger brothers and sisters who are cheering their sister on, so excited that it's finally time for their family to get started. 

Hand-painted button earrings

Yesterday I was in the mood to paint so I made some button earrings with muslin and then painted them.  

What do you think? Would people wear these? Or is that weird to have little painted kids on your earrings? Is it worth trying to sell on Etsy?

And then here's a little colorful village:

Do they have too much going on in such a small space?

In the middle of the night last night, I got out of bed, grabbed my sketchbook and went into the bathroom so I could turn on the light without waking up Adam and started sketching more ideas of things to paint on the earrings, we'll see how they turn out.

34 Weeks

I pretty much wear these jeans every single day because they actually fit and don't squeeze me too tight.

There are less than six weeks to go. Ella is due on November 3rd. Adam has a dental school interview in Wisconsin on November 4th, which means he flies out there on the 3rd. So we are aiming for her to come either several days before or after her due date, but unfortunately we have zero control over the situation. I keep telling Ella, "October 29th is the such a perfect date! What a great day for a birthday!" We'll find out if she agrees. It will be a little bit crazy if I go into labor while Adam is on his way to Wisconsin on the 3rd. Don't worry, if that happens I will have him turn right around and fly straight back, interview or not. Marquette University will just have to be understanding about the situation. I am not having this baby by myself! And surely labor will last long enough for him to fly back, don't you think? And how many first babies come on their due date, anyway?

Life Lately

This cute-faced boy spent several evenings doing in-depth research on baby strollers and car seats, even going so far as to post a status on facebook asking for advice on the best baby travel systems. I find this ridiculously adorable! He told me that this stroller is Ella's car, we wouldn't choose a car for ourselves without doing some serious research about it and we were not going to do any less for Ella's mode of transportation. He had a list of stores for us to go to so that we could test drive the different strollers that he was trying to decide between. I had been doing some research for a few days and had finally thrown up my hands in frustration that the perfect stroller does not exist and that's when Adam took over and I'm so glad he did! He found a stroller that we both really like!

Just a couple of the latest crafts:

I made some bunting! I got the tutorial from here.

And some little bows for Baby girl's cute head.

I stumbled across some old photos that I had long ago thrown into the trash on iphoto (I had no idea that the photos still existed after throwing them in the trash).

What is even going on here? What am I doing to that cute boy's face?

You know you have been pregnant for a long time when you see a picture of yourself from before you were pregnant and think, "Who on earth is that?" Which is exactly what I thought when I saw this picture (I am posing for the illustration below, the pose changed quite a bit between this picture and the illustration). It's easy to forget that there even was a time when I didn't have preggo belly.

The Latest on Baby Girl

The Baby of Cuteness has been stretching her little legs as far as she can, it makes my tummy very odd-shaped when she has her feet poking out so far. She is still measuring big for her age, even though my tummy doesn't look it. And I'm still fitting in my regular jeans BUT they have definitely been stretching out as I've gotten bigger. I washed a pair of jeans and let them air dry and I couldn't even pull them up past my thighs when I tried to get them on, which means my thighs have been expanding as well! 

Before I was pregnant I would have the craziest, most vivid dreams. But since I've been pregnant my dreams have become downright boring! I beg myself to wake up in my dreams because I am so bored! But these past couple of nights I've had several dreams where I didn't know how to take care of Ella and so she died-- scary! So I started watching all of these videos on babycenter.com about the most basic things that I have known how to do for years, like "how to change a diaper." But my dreams have made me worried that maybe I don't know how to do them as well as I thought and so I avidly watch these movies where the diaper changing "experts" tell me how to properly take care of baby girl. I wonder how you achieve the title of a "diaper changing expert?' or a "baby swaddling expert?"

What Made Me Cry Today

I thought I had called every conceivable business that needed to know my changed address but  I went to the doctor's office today and found out that there was one thing I had not done, which was interesting since i had called that business and told them of the change and they had never mentioned the need to call another department of their business to give them the same news, but oh well, one more phone call, I could do it!  So I gave them a call.

A lady starts chanting different menu options and the number to dial for each one. "2" sounds like it might possibly be close to what I want, so I dial it.

Another menu: I dial "4."

A third menu, I don't hear any mention of the department I want to be connected to that was previously mentioned in the last menu that led me to dial that "4." Hmmm... I randomly dial "8."

Dial "1" for English? How would I have gotten through this many menus if I didn't understand English? Maybe my choice of numbers is leading them to believe I don't understand what they are saying.

Fifth menu, list a bunch of possible extensions, "If none of these are what you are looking for then just dial "0" to speak to someone." Oh thank heavens! "0!"

Seven minute wait time, that's not too bad.

A lady answers, I give her all of my personal information to verify who I am and then I explain the situation. "Oh sorry, this is the wrong number for that. Let me transfer you to the right department." Okay, at least I'm almost there!

Eighteen minute wait time. Really awful static-y music.  I hold onto the phone with one hand and use the other to renew some library books, respond to some emails, research the top-rated baby strollers.

A lady finally picks up, I explain the situation.

"Oh no, we don't deal with that, let me give you the phone number of the office that does."

I write down the number and verbally make sure that she is sure that this number really is what I am looking for. She assures me.

I call the number. "This is Sally's answering machine!" A male voice chimes. I highly doubt that Sally can help me.

So I go online and start looking up numbers of random places that might possibly be the right one. I call one random number. "Oh no, we cannot help you, let me transfer you to this other department that deals with that."

Me: I just talked to that department ten minutes ago and they said they can't help me.

Lady: Oh okay, well then, let me give you this other phone number for your local office and they should be able to help.

Oh great.

I write down the dang number. I call the dang number.

"Our office is now closed. Please call back during normal business hours." I look at the clock. It's 4:32pm. I stay on the line to find out what "normal" business hours are. None are mentioned. Since when is 4:32pm on a Thursday not normal business hours?

I close my phone and my pregnancy-hyped hormones kick in and I burst into tears.

What a waste of an hour of my day. I just want to update my information so that I can give birth to my baby in my current city instead of my old one, is that too much to ask?!

I will try again tomorrow.

Etsy Shop

 I set up an Etsy shop this week and put up five prints to sell. Here is a link to the shop. What do you think, are these good prints to sell or should I have chosen different ones? 

You can click on the images to enlarge them.

You can see more of my artwork on my website here.

I have no idea how this Etsy shop thing is going to go, but I guess I'll see!

Sarah Jane Studios

I think I've posted work by Sarah Jane before, but I recently visited her blog and saw some new stuff that she's working on and I really like it so I thought I'd post more or her work. Here are her newest pieces:

And some of her older stuff that is just so beautiful:

Visit Sarah Jane's blog here and her etsy shop here.

Sunny Storm

We were eating some Tillamook ice cream (I tell you, we're addicted) when it started to rain and thunder and lightning outside so we decided to sit out on the back porch and enjoy the storm; it was one of those storms where it's kind of sunny and stormy at the same time. We brought our computers out with us-- I searched blogs and Pinterest for good craft projects and Adam looked at his sports.

I love that you can see the red cliffs reflected in the glass-- aren't they beautiful?

 Since we now live in a place that has beautiful natural lighting (instead of the terrible lighting in our basement apartment) we've been trying to take more pictures of our life. Somehow, our attempts to capture the loveliness of the storm and the rainbow that followed it resulted in this picture (I kind of love it):

 Just over seven months (32 weeks)

And Ella's cute-faced dad: