The Arrival of Otto Richard!

By | The Brothers May | 3 Comments

Otto's Birth Story

Otto Richard May

March 17, 2017

9:07 am

9 lbs 3 oz

21.5″ long

Oh Otto! What a wild ride you have taken us on. Wild, but awesome and blessed and yes, crazy and all of those fun things that happen when you add a newborn to an already chaotic house! We are so happy you are finally here… we’ve been waiting for you!

Otto's Birth Story

The days leading up to Otto’s birthday were full of uncertainty. This whole “wait for baby… who knows when/where I will go into labor” was an entirely new ballgame for me. With the twins, I was on hospital bedrest leading up to their arrival, so I was literally steps away from where I needed to be day and night, surrounded by professionals. But with Otto? Shoot…  I had no idea! I had a silly, irrational fear that I’d get stuck, blocked in by cars on all sides, in a fast food drive thru lane. Or what if it was in the middle of the night? What would we do with the boys?

Otto's Birth Story

But of course, it all worked out. I had been feeling pretty good all day on the eve of his birth, minus some belly discomfort, which I chalked up to my pants being too tight (ha!). I left work a little early to get my hair done… an appointment I never thought I would make being 38w5d along. (By the way, can I just say how awesome it felt to be able to go full term with this kid!?). We finished my hair and as I was signing the credit card receipt, I felt my water break. I knew instantly what it was… and thank goodness I had a long coat on that day.

The nurses took one look at me when I arrived and deadpanned, “Yup, that’s a rupture” and admitted me. I’m glad they were calm, because I wasn’t! I realized about halfway through the triage process that I may have gone to the hospital too soon (you know, these things take awhile) but for whatever reason, we were all convinced it was go time. And it sorta was… in about 16 hours. Aaron showed up 90 minutes later… he had been with the boys waiting for my parents to arrive (they flew down the interstate from Indiana).

I labored throughout that night… all I wanted to do was walk. It was the only thing that felt good. I must have worn a path in the floor, going round and round, with Aaron at my side to lean on when the contractions hit. (Aaron continues to be the best birth coach, ever. Who needs a doula?) Finally, around 6 am, I asked for the epidural. I was about 5-6 cm at this point and ready for some help. There’s some sick part of me that likes to feel the pain, to know the pain, for as long as I can stand it. But then I’m all about some relief so I can focus on the pushing, enjoy the process and be present for his arrival.

Otto's Birth Story

The active labor part was very similar to the twins. Little boy was ready to arrive, because after just a few pushes/minutes, he was here. The relief I felt… that immediate lift of worry/anxiety/questions/uncertainty… was lifted when I saw his beautiful face. The best moments of my life are seeing my boys for the first time, and watching Aaron see our boys too. I loved my doctor… she is all about being present… and I distinctly remember her saying “Look at him!” as he was being born. I didn’t take my eyes off of him for hours. Also, Aaron watched the whole thing this time around and you should have seen his face! A mix between wonderment and pure terror.

Otto's Birth Story

And unlike the twins, I didn’t have to leave my sweet boy there at that hospital. He was by my side always… something you notice when you’ve done the NICU thing in the past. We stayed for two nights after he was born, which I was originally against, but I needed the rest. And I needed time to be skin-to-skin with my boy as we waited for my milk to come in. The big boys came to see us, with my parents, at the hospital on Saturday and it was amazing. Aaron got them each a Big Brother balloon from the gift shop, which was the best distraction for two excited toddlers. Teller and Nixon did so well with him at that first meeting and continue to do so well with little brother. They are loving, yet curious. They touch his nose, eyes, feet… examining them as closely as I did when he first arrived. They could say his name immediately, “Ah-TOE!” and Aaron and I have since adopted the super cute pronunciation.

Otto's Birth Story

Otto's Birth Story

Otto is one-month old already, if you can believe it. I know time will escape us faster than it ever has, so I’ve been trying to stay in the moment and soak up every ounce of this newborn phase. We’re still trying to figure out our routine and getting to know our little man. Right now, my main goal is to make sure everyone feels loved and cared for. The twins and I have special time together each night, just like we’ve always had, whether it’s me reading to them or playing with cars, and that has helped tremendously with the transition.

That’s all for now! Welcome to this world Otto!

xo,

emily

DIY No-Sew Modern Easter Baskets

By | Craft & Create | No Comments

Easter is almost here! I’ve been excited for this holiday because my two-year olds are old enough to understand what’s going on and really get into it. We took them to an Easter egg hunt this past weekend and they had a blast! They are at that age where “collecting” is really fun, which makes egg huntin’ the perfect activity. And what is an Easter egg hunt without an Easter egg basket? I had so much fun creating these bunny totes. Seriously the easiest thing ever!

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

I had been hunting for cute Easter egg baskets for awhile, but I couldn’t find any that I liked! Or at least ones that were reasonably priced. I wanted something fun and more modern, so I took matters into my own hands. The requirements: under $15 each, no sewing required and no more than 10 minutes to assemble each one (hello, we’ve got a newborn over here). Easy peasy.

First up, I ordered these blank bunny ear burlap totes off of Etsy for $10 each. I’m not sure the Etsy option would ship in time for this Easter, but no worries—they are also available on Amazon Prime!

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

With the tote already made for me, I focused on creating the felt block letters for the front. I made my own letter stencils the way I always do—tracing them right off of my computer screen. I chose my font (Andale Mono) and my font size (600) and made pencil marks around the outline of each letter. (Note: I know my screen says a font size of 800 but it was too big! 600 at 100% view ended up being perfect.)

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

The reason I didn’t trace the letters fully is because I wanted them perfectly straight, which is hard to do when tracing on a screen. I used the marks I made to draw the final, straight lines with a ruler. The “O” is obviously a little tricker… I eyeballed that one. 😉

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

When I cut out my letters using the stencil, I used the clean edges of the felt sheets as much as I could to ensure straight lines. Can you tell I was straight line obsessed? I didn’t want the letters too look too “crafty”… ifyaknowwhatImean.

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

With all of the letters cut out, I eyeballed the placement on the tote, then used Tacky Glue to glue everything down.

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

Each tote is also fully lined, so to ensure none of my glue leaked through to the liner, it was easy enough to just pull the liner out while I was glueing everything together. I popped it back in once everything was dry.

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

All done! Seriously so easy. It’s really just cutting out letters and glueing! The boys received tons of compliments on theirs and they’ve had a ton of fun carrying them around the house. All weekend long they would sling it over their shoulder, yell “Bye!” to Aaron and I and try to head out the door. Lol!

DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

=DIY No-Sew Easter Baskets

Hope everyone has a great Easter!

xo,

emily

Psssttt… affiliate links are used in this post. 

Making Our Master Bathroom Easier On The Eyes

By | Room Makeovers, Wallace Woods House | 4 Comments

Our master bathroom is one of those rooms I like to hide from the internet. It frustrates the heck out of me! There are big frustrations I can’t change right now—like the too-big shower, a strange layout, the off-center vanity and the wavy, cracking floor tile—but there are some things I can tackle now (and for free!). My favorite kind of project.

Here’s the bathroom on moving day.

Master Bathroom - The open door is the toilet

First up: the storage issue. The vanity that’s there—despite it being the most generic vanity in all of the land—has some great storage space. And it’s chock full of our toiletries, guest bath supplies and towels. Too chock full. About a year ago we added a Craigslist-procured dresser at the back of the bathroom (see below). And while we loved the idea and potential function, the actual dresser crumbled after a few months of use. Its fate was of the curb alert variety.

Dresser in the Bathroom

Then, when we changed the guest bedroom into Otto’s nursery, another dresser became a bathroom storage contender. This second dresser is one of those special finds—my first even! It was the first piece of furniture I ever pulled from someone else’s trash—my landlord in college to be exact. It also was my first foray into DIY decorating, which was swapping out the knobs for something a little more sparkly.

Updates to the Master Bathroom

The dresser houses all of our towels, wash cloths and beach towels. And it’s been working really well! On top of the dresser are plants (which I’m actively killing every day, despite my best efforts) as well as a box of costume jewelry.

I had been dying to do something with the wall space above the dresser. I also had a stack of framed art and photos that never got hung after the move. Gallery wall to the rescue. 🙂 A dresser and a gallery wall certainly aren’t the most conventional choices for a bathroom space, but we like to walk on the wild side around here.

Updates to the Master Bathroom

You want to hear a funny story of that oil painting of Aaron? It was done by a friend of ours (hey Benjamin!) and it first popped up on the blog in the ostrich bathroom. Well, the ostrich bathroom made its round on the internet big time and something really funny happened as a result. People started to reach out to Benjamin to request a copy of that painting. So now there are paintings of boxer-clad Aaron in others’ peoples homes, too. I find it hilarious. Aaron finds it strange. Ha!

Updates to the Master Bathroom

So those are the master bathroom updates. Completely cost free and made the space a little less offensive overall. Next up—figuring out a better solution for the bathroom rug. I don’t love the multiple-bathmat look, so am currently trying to track down a 3′ x 5′ option. A friend on Facebook suggested just doing a wool or flatweave rug in here, so I think that may be my next move! Plan B is to buy two of these bath runners and sew them together. Stay tuned…Updates to the Master Bathroom

Yay for room improvements that don’t cost a thing. The nursery was an expensive project, so it feels good to tackle a mini makeover that was much more kind to our wallets.

Happy Tuesday everyone!

xo,

emily