Saturday, May 30, 2015

My Name is Caitie & I'm a Target-aholic.

"Hi Caitie.."

Anybody else in that same boat? Show of hands.

I just love Target. I have no idea why. I shop at all stores, don't get me wrong. But if I'm just bored at the house (like I was today - Hubs has to work all weekend) and want to get out I just go there, wander around, see what I can see, buy things that we need, and leave. I like the carts better there, too. They're nice and tall, lighter, and easier to maneuver. 

I should do a shopping cart comparison haha!
"Places with the best shopping carts" - oh man, I may do that!
Stay tuned..

But, easily, my favorite part in the entire store


We all know this little area of the store and we can never go in or leave without checking it out. Or at least I can't. And I don't want to. Ever. I love that little place. I love it even more when things are on sale in the Dollar Spot and/or the Cartwheel app has a discount on items in there! Yeaaaa. You always feel like you won the jackpot.

Well, I'm going to be going back and forth to the Dollar Spot and a couple other places, because I have to start thinking about little precious' 1st birthday party!! I can't believe it! I'm so so so excited. I feel like if I can throw her a party and her not turn 1 it would be even better. 
I'm not ready for her to grow up.. At all.

 So, what I want to do is document everything I purchase from there and from other places for really cheap and do everything for her first birthday party! Of course, there will be a few things I cannot do myself, yet (like invitations and stuff), but for all the decorations and possibly even the food I'm going to try to make! I'm so excited. And as always I would love some input on things. I have her theme picked out, since this will probably be one of the only birthdays I can pick things out for her party before she gets to put her input into it, it's going to be so girly and fun!

Also, I'm in the process of redoing our back room/play room/office - a multipurpose room, if you will - and will be posting everything about that, as well.

Lots of exciting things coming up! Can't wait to share with you guys.

If you have any ideas, favorites, couldashouldawoulda's for your kids birthday parties PLEASE let me know. It's my first first birthday and I want it to go well.. Even though it's not until October! Haha.


Thursday, May 28, 2015

Falling Behind.

Sorry I've been gone, guys!

I've been pretty busy these past two weeks, and I couldn't seem to make the time to blog even though I need to! It's enjoyable and I love to get my feelings, ideas, and silliness out! These past two weeks I have had a great time.

We had a get together at my house with my side of the family. Sisters, one of my sisters boyfriends and my momma. We had a shrimp boil. My, oh my, was that some tasty food! Props to the hubs!

My mouth is watering looking at it!

If you don't like "Old Bay" you're wrong.

In the middle of the week the biggest thing happened; my baby girl started crawling!

My sweet, little baby figured out that crawling thing and she's been on the move ever since. I can't believe it. She was 7 months and 12 days old, haha. Not that I was counting or anything.

And now she can pull herself up in her crib, so I come in and she's standing on the side. Only scares me to death every time. So in the morning when she whines to wake up I'm in there almost immediately! Time to lower the crib again. Second time in a month. Oye!

Then that next weekend my husband took off that Friday to have a nice, long, 4 day weekend (because Monday was Memorial Day). 

Happy Memorial Day! <3
And we met his family out at their house they have on the Weeki Wachee River. It was such a beautiful weekend, and tons of fun with 14 people in a 3 bedroom 2 bathroom house!

Now, after a wonderful, long, family filled few weeks; I got sick. So weirdly sick it worried me. It started Tuesday and I noticed I got a weird light headed feeling when I would lean over and came back up. Then later my throat started hurting.. Then all of a sudden at like 8:30pm almost on the dot, I turned freezing cold! Shivers, shakes, I could not get warm. It was crazy. Took some Ibprofen for my throat and took my temperature - 101.2 crap! I layered up and tried to sleep it off. Woke up with the baby a few times (she's going through a growth spurt and/or teething so she's extremely fussy all. day. long.), I was miserable. Woke up at like 4:30 sweating like a fat bird at a disco, so I de-layer, took my temperature. 103.6 - great! I'm contagious. I cannot get my child sick! So I go ahead and text my mom for when she wakes up to come help me with the baby because I was so weak and I didn't want Harper to catch anything if there was even a possibility of her catching anything. Wake up around 8 (which is unheard of for Harper - she's normally awake between 6-7:30 daily), took my temperature again - 104.7!! AHH! I don't know what was wrong with me but that was scary. I'm pretty sure it was just that high because I had been wrapped up in blankets all night long, but either way, crazy.

Anyway, long story short, my mom came over to take care of Harper while I napped and tried to get over this thing, she also made me some vegetable soup. What a gal! Love my momma!

Even still, today, I have a pretty bad sore throat. But, I don't have a fever and my shivers/shakes have disappeared.

All in all, I had a great past two weeks.

How was your Memorial Day Weekend? What do you guys do to celebrate the fallen?

Please tag me in your Memorial Day pictures and any DIY stuff you do! I would love to see!
Find me on Instagram, and Twitter!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

DIY Outdoor Wicker Chairs.

This one is going to be pretty long, but will have step by step instructions to how I redid the chairs.
Since the baby is on a regular schedule and I had these chairs in my garage just begging to be fixed up and put outside. They were begging. Seriously.

How cute, right? These will look so cute painted and put on my back porch.
So lizards can climb all over them and sunbathe on them. I have to find something to make that stop..

I started by cleaning them off. They were pretty dusty , so I just took a toilet bowl brush (that we use for cleaning, not for toilets haha) and brushed it all over the entire thing. Later I noticed it didn't do as great as I would've hoped so I will be looking for something else next time.
After I cleaned them I had to take them apart. 1. To be able to paint the chairs. 2. To cover those cushions.

Those arrows are pointing to the screws holding the seat on. Most all chairs you want to redo are like this. So just take your screw driver, or drill if you're fancy, and take the screws out. And now you have two pieces.

All done.

Make sure you take the chairs outside to spray. There's a lot of over spray and with this particular chair it got everywhere. Thank goodness the lawn grows because otherwise my husband would've been pretty ticked.

So I had this vision in my head to do them a pretty coral color and I thought they would be so cute!
Well, I did it and it was not cute. It was pretty bad actually. So, I had to go out the next day and get a different color spray paint. While the paint was drying I went ahead and covered the cushions. I had some old fabric that I bought from the Restore a long time ago (I paid $8 for an entire thing of it. Not per yard or anything. I thought that was pretty good, and it's heavy duty!). All I used was a hand staple gun, scissors, and a hammer - or in my case a big screw driver because I couldn't find my hammer.
 I started by measuring the cushion.
Nothing special really. No tape measurements or anything. If you are really particular, of course do use a tape measure, but I'm not and you won't see the bottom of this cushion anyway so it doesn't have to be pretty for me.
 So I took the finished edge and put it where the front of the cushion is.
Folded it up, started in the middle and stapled about 5 staples from one side to the other.
  So once that was done, I pulled the fabric tight, folded the corner down and stapled that.
Then, since its on a corner, I pulled tight, folded the fabric up from what is the top of the cushion to the bottom making a crease and stapled again.
I made sure that the crease looked nice, and pulled as tight as I could to make sure it looked nice and crisp. Now, I made sure I didn't use too much fabric as to cover up the holes where the screws go for the sides, the back it had to go through fabric (which turned out not to be a problem at all).
After that I stapled the rest of the fabric to the wooden part and stapled along the straight part.
Did that on both sides before continuing to the back/rounded part.
For this part, I kept folding and stapling. Nothing really special. Worked from one side to the other. If you are good at wrapping presents, then this will be a breeze for you. And even if you aren't it's very easy, just make sure you are pulling tight and keeping the folds nice and flat.
For the back/rounded part I first measured so that the fabric closest to the top of the cushion had enough fabric and I didn't pull that too tight.
So after I knew how much I needed, I folded the excess and stapled.
Then once that was stapled, just like a present, there was a larger piece across the back that I pulled nice and tight, then folded over and stapled.
Ta-da! Nice and neat. Not too shabby right?
Took me all of, say, 10 minutes to do one of them. Cutting and all included.

Awesome, so that was done. Now to go do a touch-up coat on the chairs with my spray paint.
New colors! In. Love.
This Rust-Oleum paint is about $6 at Walmart. But the way it sprays so easily and the coverage is definitely worth the money. The Krylon spray paint was great, too. The coverage was fantastic! I've never used anything like it. This was $4 at Walmart. I used two cans of both. I already had one can of the white to paint a flying pig at my house I got from a yard sale (haha that sounds so funny - I'll show you one day!).

So the finished product:
How freaking precious, right?
I'm so in love with them! They go so well in my back porch.
(I know, I have to do the table now, too.. I'll get to it!)

Run down on prices:

Chairs: Free
(gift from hubby's aunt)

Fabric for cushions: Free.
(already had)

Spray paint: $24
(including the coral can I bought that I didn't like.)

All together, I spent no more than $25!! Awesome right?
DIY doesn't have to be expensive, hard or stressful. Just have to try and see how it goes.

Have you done any DIY projects? I'd love to see!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

My birth experience. Part II

Part II of Giving Birth to Harper.
You can read the first part here.
(Still funny sounding)

In lieu of Mother's Day I decided to post the rest of my birth story.

If I can be completely honest, I do feel like this should be on TLC or something.

To recap from the last time..

I have been contracting since Sunday evening. My water broke around 5am Tuesday morning, it's now Tuesday evening. I've been on Pitocin since 7am-ish Tuesday morning. No baby. Probably 8cm dilated. No food and no drink since Monday.

All this time, these nurses have me flipping back and forth to try to get the baby down. Have me doing that stupid hugging the bed thing, which made me so mad and was extremely painful. They had to cath me two or three times because I couldn't physically go and one time they had to get an extra bed pan thing because there was so much coming out. So, now, it's about 12:30 and technically Wednesday, the nurse comes in, checks me and says the magic words. "You can start pushing now. You're at 10cm!" Tears. Excitement. Anxiety. Exhaustion. I reckon emptying my bladder made the baby move down or something. I didn't care. Nurses call for the doctor (who I had seen mayyybe 2 times before this. He was a butt head.) Let's do this!!

I have to take a second, real quick, to give a shout out to my husband. He was the sweetest, strongest partner I could've ever asked for. He left me probably 3 times the whole time I was in the hospital. He didn't eat, he didn't drink, he stood up basically the whole time and held my hand through almost every contraction. He was my rock! I can never thank him enough for that. At one point I told him to go get something to eat from the cafeteria. He didn't want to because I couldn't eat. And that's how every husband and future father should be. One time he had to just go outside, he walked to his truck and came back just to relieve a little tension he was carrying. At one point he broke down and started tearing up because he hated seeing me in so much pain and distraught over the fact that I felt like a failure that I couldn't have this baby! But, he was supportive the entire time. I couldn't brag about him enough. Even the nurses applauded him.
They crank up that Pitocin. Making my contractions sky rocket and that's when you're supposed to push, right? So, I push. And push. And push. And push. Doctor, let's call him Dr. Al, comes in and checks me. I push. And push. Push some more. Come to find out the baby's head is facing towards the right. The nurses have me get onto my right side and have me push. I've been pushing about 3 hours now. My contractions are up in the 100's. I was SO tired. I passed out between contractions two different times! My sweet husband was like "you slept through a big one.." I was so out of it, I didn't know what he was talking about. As many moms know, you don't exactly "sleep" through contractions, unless you have great medicine! I cry. I can't help it. I'm exhausted. I'm begging for someone to do something to get this baby out. I could not physically do it anymore. Or so I thought. I pushed for 7 hours. S E V E N!

Fast forward to 7 in the morning, nurses that had helped me the morning before came back. Offering their condolences, talking to my belly, telling little miss to get out of there so they could all see her. (Did I mention how much I loved the nurses? Lakeland Regional Medical Center, everyone. Love them!) 26 hours since my water broke, 24 hours since I had been there. Shift change for the doctors. New Dr came in. Dr. Rivera. Such a great doctor. He comes in, demands to find out why nobody had helped us, why this baby was still in my tummy and why nobody called for a Cesarean. He comes and sits next to the bed and explains to me how myself and the baby are at risk because my water broke over 24 hours ago, asks me how I feel about having a Cesarean. I'm all for it. As long as the baby is okay and she comes now. I asked if I could have a vaginal birth the next time if I wanted to, mostly because I've heard so many different things on it and I really wanted to know from a professional. He said it shouldn't be a problem and that it's very common to deliver vaginally after a c-section. He has the nurse call to see what the surgery order is and how many people are in front of me. She calls and tells him that there are 5 other mommies scheduled for a surgery. His response: "Are they as important as mine? (meaning me)" Then barges out the door. 3 minutes later he's back and has the nurse get me and Whit prepped for a c-section. All that exhaustion goes away and I get a rush of adrenaline. Whit and I get to see our baby finally!

We are all smiles. But, first; can I brush my teeth? Literally. The nurses laugh at me as I'm spitting toothpaste into a puke bag. My mom goes and fills in the rest of the family that has stayed all day and night to support us. The nurse gets Whit some scrubs and snacks, they didn't want him to pass out. Haha, which he didn't end up eating because he was so excited. Got wheeled into the operating room, all the nurses and anesthesiologists were so dang nice! Asked me about the baby, what I was going to name her. Still didn't know. They administered the epidural. Cake. They laid me back, got me all situated. Hubby comes in. I can't stop laughing. He has a mask on but his beard was so big that it pokes out underneath it. Cutie. So the doctors and everyone come in, and everyone introduces themselves to Whit and I, someone from the NICU was in there because there was meconium in the amniotic fluid, so they let us know that they do not want her to cry right away and that they won't show her to us right away because they just want to make sure that she is okay. Fine by me, her health is more important to me than anything. The anesthesiologist said he would let us know when Whit can stand up to look at her while the doctors were pulling her out. Whit is sitting next to me by my head and we are so giddy! They're starting!! Few what feels like seconds later, the anesthesiologist tells us that Whit can get up and look at her since they were ready to pull her out. He stands up and the doctors said "Baby girl. Born 8:31am" We both start crying. Whit had to sit back down. "Is she beautiful?!" I asked Whit. He nods because he can't say anything since he's trying not to cry. The lady from the NICU calls out, "She's perfect! We're wrapping her up to bring her over to you.." I hear her cry.

The moment every mom waits to hear for those 40 long weeks. Whit goes and takes some pictures of her while the doctors are sewing me up (or whatever the heck they do). He comes back and sits down while we wait for the doctors to let me see her, he leans in to give me a kiss through his mask. They bring her around the curtain and I finally get to see her.

 My heart exploded. Seriously. She's the most perfect little baby I've ever seen. I love her so much. It's an instant, overpowering, amazing, selfless love that you feel as soon as you see your child and hold them in your arms. Amazing. I totally see why people have a bunch of kids. Totally.
Baby Girl Bowden.
Born 10/8/2014 at 8:31pm.
8lbs 12oz and 22" long.

Now, we're in recovery. Just me, hubby and sweet angel baby.

Nobody told me, but I'm going to tell you - if you get a c-section you'll shake like you're freezing cold. Your jaw will shiver, your hand is unsteady, arms, shoulders, feet.. Shake shake shake, like a Taylor Swift song. Whit was wondering what was wrong with me, and we asked the ladies that came in after and they said it was normal because of the anesthesia and body temperature. Also, once we got back to the hospital room that we were to stay in while I recovered and stuff, I started to itch all over! Also asked the nurse and it was from the medicine I was given also. It wasn't that bad, it was just like a mild itch, but annoying because it was all over.

So, now we all can breathe. And shower. And wash ourselves. And for the love of everything that's holy GIVE ME A DRINK! Liquid. Now! Before we got to the room the nurses brought in ice and a few other things like blankets, and stuff. My sister had a Diet Dr Pepper from the vending machine and I basically yanked it out of her hand to put it into the ice and chug it down as fast as I could. Only to be told after basically drinking what was left of the soda that I was on a clear liquid diet for a few hours so they can asses how I was and talk to the Dr.


Didn't last too long, though. Dr Ramirez came in a little bit later and told me how everything was. He said that it was one of the hardest "sew ups" (I don't know the technical term he used. To be honest, my husband had to retell me everything he said because I was in such a fog) he's ever had to do. He said I was so swollen and baby girls head was too big for my birth canal that it did a lot of damage to my insides. So unfortunately I wouldn't be able to have a vaginal birth with my next pregnancy. Hey, if that's the worst thing that could happen then that's okay with me! I don't mind knowing exactly when the next baby will come. As long as he or she is healthy!

We didn't leave the hospital for 3 days after that because Dr Ramirez wanted to keep an eye on me and my incision. Then the next day Dr Al was back on the clock. Oh goodie. (not really) He comes in and says (I kid you not!), "Oh. I see you didn't make it.."

Excuse me?! I didn't make it?
So because the other doctor cared more about my childs safety and not the fact that I was to have a natural delivery, that means "I didn't make it"?!
"^*%*&!#%^@!$^$&$%#" is what I was thinking in my head.

Needless to say he didn't come back. I told him to do what he was obligated to do and not to come back, the nurses could handle anything I needed. They were all SO wonderful! So I had contractions from Sunday to Wednesday, I pushed for 7 hours, had a baby within 30 minutes of a caring doctor coming onto his shift, was in the hospital from Tuesday until Saturday. And the pain was worth every single second. I can't remember the pain, I remember the great story, but the feeling of the pain is gone. I'll do it again in a heart beat. Even if I knew that's how bad my delivery would be, I wouldn't hesitate because I have a precious little angel baby for the rest of my life! And she is worth every ounce of pain then, now and in the future. I thank God for her everyday!

So tell me your birth story! How good or bad was yours?

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

My birth experience. Part I

Giving Birth to Harper.
Part I

I'm "lol'ing" at the title of this. Sounds like a TV drama episode title or something. Let's keep it light, shall we?

Well, I have to say, I didn't have a bad pregnancy! I was actually really happy, excited, healthy.. The only thing I had was gallstones. Which suuuuuuuuucked! So I would have these "attacks", which I'm assuming, are similar to kidney stones, basically where the stone wouldn't pass or get stuck in the itty bitty hole it had to pass through. I had some attacks last 14 hours! The first time it happened I was petrified! Even though it wasn't anywhere near where the baby was. The pain was like right under the bra area, what I told the doctor was that it was like a belt of pain. You know how it used to be cool to wear the dresses and put a belt right under your chest? There. Make any sense? Anyway, the only thing I could do was change my diet, and even then I still got them. And the pain was CRAZY!

Anybody have AWFUL dreams while they were pregnant? Or, was it just me? Because I would wake up at least once a week crying from a dream I had. They were crazy. I tried everything. Not eating before bed, not drinking certain things, stop eating spicy foods (which is my bread & butter), all of it. Nothing helped. It was awful.

(this was me on my due date.. whoa!)
So, my due date was Friday, October 3. I was ENORMOUS. She had dropped, I was tired, my husband was tired, my feet and ankles were gigantic. I was extremely uncomfortable. Which, I'm almost positive, is the story with all women who are at the end of their pregnancies. And we just wanted to meet our little girl. I think I text my mom more in those last few days of my pregnancy than I had the entire time. It was Sunday night, I got my shower and laid in my bed. I had these weird pains in my back that went through to my abdomen, they weren't crazy bad, but they were very much there. I waited.. I got a few more. Then they started to come regularly. So I got my phone out and did the stop watch feature, so every time I had one, I would start it, then stop it when it ended, and start it again. It kept track of how far apart the contractions were and how long. I didn't tell my husband until he came to bed and he got SO excited. It was adorable. He wanted to run to the hospital right then and there. But, we decided to wait a little while longer. In the middle of the night they got a LOT worse to the point I couldn't sleep, but not as bad as I was expecting. So, my husband got me up and we went to the hospital. Of course, we text everyone we could and we were thinking "THIS IS IT!" Gah, I still remember how excited I was to be giving birth. Well, we got to the hospital, and me trying to be Super Woman when they asked how bad the pain was on a 1-10 scale, I said "like a 6?" Dumbie! (My husband's nudging me with the whole "make it sound worse than it was" look.) But, I was used to the gallstone pain and that was a totally different and worse pain at that point. So they checked me, said "sorry" and we had to go home because I wasn't dilated at all. AT ALL! I was 3 days past my due date. How was this possible?! So, we went home.

The contractions kept coming. At this point it's Monday evening and the contractions had not been any better. So we go back to the hospital about midnight. I was sure something had changed.. WRONG. Got sent home again. "How in the heck is this happening? Does she hate me already? My body is so pissed at me and isn't letting this baby come out.." is what I was thinking in my head. Heck, I probably said it out loud to my adoring hubby. At this point our whole family had been on edge and were waiting not-so patiently. I. was. miserable.

Went home, mind you both me and my husband have been awake this entire time. He couldn't sleep because of the pain I was in from the contractions and I couldn't sleep because of, well, the contractions. It was Tuesday at 5 am, and my water broke! Hallelujah! This time was it. Done and done. Let's get there, lie about how bad the pain was (because it still wasn't as bad as the gallstones), and have this baby!

"How bad is the pain on a scale of 1-10?"
"10! 11! 27!!" lies.

The doctor checked me. I was a whole one centimeter dilated. In 2 days. One. Centimeter... Ya'll. I was pissed. But, they let me stay since my water broke. Whit (my husband) is calling and texting our entire family. "We're at the hospital, we're staying! 1cm dilated. Game time!" We were .so. excited!

Now, I didn't have a birth plan. It wasn't for me. I'm a very realistic and go-with-the-flow person and I knew what could go wrong. I said "whatever happens, happens." I was never against a cesarean section, epidurals or any of that. So I just did what I knew I was going to do and just go with it. They put me on Pitocin. Screw. You. Pitocin. More on that later. They let me know at the beginning they cannot give me an epidural. It was all such a blur I really don't even remember why. I was fine with it, because, like I said, I'm a go-with-the-flow person and obviously I'm going to be Super Woman. They gave me the shot of pain medicine through my IV that they can only give you 3 times.

All I was really worried about (besides making sure my baby was okay obviously) was that Sons of Anarchy was on that night and I was not about to miss it! It was early, like 7am, so I had time. We were still in good spirits. So excited! Hours pass, no baby, maybe 2cm dilated around 3pm. All along still contracting every 2 to 3 minutes, but still hopeful and happy because baby is comingggggg.

Nurse shift change. "Hi New Nurse, I'm ready to have this baby. Let's get her out, please!" Now, let me tell you something about these nurses. They were probably my least favorite and they were all wonderful! I seriously loved all the nurses that helped with my labor. SHOUT OUT! But, they put the head of the bed all the way up, had me get up (which was NOT easy), turn around and hug the head of the bed on my knees and rock my hips back and forth. Full out, butt! It was the worst pain ever, then.

I was probably 5cm by the time the next nurse shift change came around 11pm. "Dangit, I missed Sons of Anarchy." No, just kidding. But, really, we did. No longer in the best of spirits, we were both starting to get upset. Still contracting. Nurse came in, checked me (which at this point, my vagina had had enough of!) and she said that a part of my cervix was still wrapped around baby girl's head. Now, I don't know what all that stuff means, all I know is that I asked her if she could just cut that part off. And apparently you cannot. Big no no. Big. Huge!

Now at this point all of our family had come and gone, and at one point or another they were all there. All took turns coming back to see me and give me a hug or make me laugh or something. My husband, mom and sisters were in and out the most. Made me so happy that our little nugget had so many people love her! We didn't have a name for her yet so we all called her Baby Girl Bowden.

I'm leaving you here today. I'll post the rest of the story in a few days. So, to be continued... (: