26 Weeks

How far along: 26 weeks, 5 days
Size: 14 inches and 1.75 pounds
Gender: Girl
Total weight gain: 18ish pounds
Maternity clothes: I borrowed this maternity maxi dress from a friend and am loving how comfortable it is. I'm putting a couple more on my wish list next month :).
Stretch marks: No.
Sleep: I've been sleeping really soundly this week apart from waking a couple times. No complaints here!
Movement: Yes. I still haven't noticed hiccups with this baby. Most of the movement is up high, though on occasion I feel a lot of pressure lower when her back is pressing outward.
Queasy or sick: Thankful to be feeling great!
Labor Signs: --
Symptoms: I've been really comfortable this week and haven't really "felt" pregnant at all, aside from the gentle nudges going on inside :).
Belly button in or out: The bottom is still in, but the top part is starting to poke out.
Wedding rings on or off: On.
Recap of the week: We spent Saturday painting Nora's new room (while she enjoyed her first Disney movie)! Unfortunately, two coats of the light color we chose didn't cover the dark brown room so we'll be spending one evening this week painting a third and final coat. Easter Sunday was a wonderful day!
Looking forward to: Matt's family and both sets of grandparents are coming to visit starting this weekend. It's been a long time since we saw them, and we're really excited to spend time together!
Looking back: Oops! I guess I didn't do a 26 week blog post last time. You'll have to stay tuned for next week.

+, Lauren Aiken


Easter 2014

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter weekend! Easter is my favorite holiday, and I had been looking forward to it for a couple of weeks. Nora kicked off Easter morning by letting us sleep in until almost 7. We enjoyed a pancakes + bacon breakfast and let Nora discover her Easter basket before going to church.

Nora's Easter basket was really simple this year, consisting of two balls from the $1 Target aisle, and handmade kitty, and some DIY tea bags for her play tea set.

We got a quick family photo after church (the only one all day, oops!).

Our friends came over for dinner and a little late-afternoon Easter egg hunt. Nora squealed with delight every time she saw an egg finally got the hang of carrying her basket around toward the end.

What did you do for Easter?
Hope you're all having a great week and are still celebrating that Christ is risen!

+, Lauren Aiken


A Blue Elephant Baby Shower

Two weekends ago, my friend Jessica and I co-hosted a baby shower for our friend Becca who is due in just a few weeks! We DIYed the food and decor, which made for a fun and simple celebration.

Cheeses + Fruit
Veggies + Hummus and Dip
Everything Seed Rolls
Strawberry Cake Pops
Mini Oreo Cheesecakes

We downloaded these elephant tags to make cupcake toppers.

Jessica's mom has a cake pop maker so we tried our hand and making and decorating cake pops! They may not look picture-perfect, but they were delicious.

And since fruit tea is kind of a Nashville thing, we tried this recipe. It was a big hit!

Straws from Hobby Lobby (because they're fun!), as well as the paper plates and napkins above.

The banner was made using scrapbook paper (alphabet and elephant templates found here). And we painted a wooden H and mounted it on a framed piece of scrap piece of fabric for the gift table.

You can't go wrong with chocolate dipped pretzels for favors :). 

Do you enjoy hosting parties and/or showers? 
What tips do you have for keeping things simple?

+, Lauren Aiken


25 Weeks

How far along: 25 weeks, 4 days
Size: 13.5 inches, 1.5 pounds (rutabaga)
Gender:  Girl :)
Total weight gain: I think around 17 pounds? Our scale seems to fluctuate around 2 pounds so I'm not really sure.
Maternity clothes: I think maxi dresses are going to be my go-to this summer. It's still cool enough to be comfortable in jeans and tees, but in the 90 degree summer weather, some looser fitting clothing is going to be essential!
Stretch marks: No.
Sleep: Sleep has been pretty good this week, and I actually can't remember any recent crazy dreams. I'm still waking up about 3 times a night.
Movement: Some days I feel violent punches and kicks, while others are more gentle. I'm feeling a lot more movement during the day now, and not just when I'm resting.
Queasy or sick: I am well this week! Hooray!!!
Labor Signs: --
Symptoms: A tiny bit of acid reflux off and on and an ever-growing belly.
Belly button in or out: Flat(ish)
Wedding rings on or off: On
Recap of the week: I finally made some progress on Nora's new room! We scored a Craigslist dresser for $80, I found a coverlet for her bed, and finally picked a paint color. Spring has sprung in Nashville so we spent Saturday morning out on a farm with dear friends, grilled out this weekend, and got some more spring cleaning done.
Looking forward to: Easter is less than a week away!
Looking back: (I'm adding this category so I have a consistent place to link back) 25 weeks with Nora

Here are a few photos from our Saturday adventure :).

+, Lauren Aiken


24 Weeks

How far along: 24 weeks, 5 days
Size: 12.5 inches, 1.25 pounds (corn)
Gender: Girl
Total weight gain: 14 pounds
Maternity clothes: For comparison this week, I wore the same top as my 24 week bump photo with Nora. What do you think? A little bigger?
Stretch marks: No
Sleep: This week I've had two weird dreams about chick-fil-a (don't ask!). I've been sleeping pretty well overall.
Movement: Movement has gotten more predictable (she moves the most at night and early in the morning) and stronger.
Queasy or sick: I'm currently being treated for a UTI with a round of antibiotics. I have been sick more weeks than not lately and am hoping this is the last issue for awhile!
Labor Signs: --
Symptoms: Braxton-hicks a few times a day and lower energy than usual.
Belly button in or out: Starting to get flatter
Wedding rings on or off: On
Recap of the week: The week was filled with errands, play dates, and an unexpected trip to see the midwives. I co-hosted a baby shower for a friend on Saturday, and we went to a backyard BBQ to celebrate another friend's new job.
Looking forward to: I really need to get started on Nora's new room and the nursery soon. Maybe this week :). I guess the nesting instinct hasn't quite kicked in yet!

+, Lauren Aiken