Friday, June 29, 2012

DIY Birthday Card Book

In the last couple of days I have seen this birthday card book around pinterest quite a few times. I thought it was a fun little idea and pinned it straight away.

Original Inspiration

It was one of those things that I would normally pin and then forget about for 12 months or more. Well, in completely un-Tamsyn-like fashion I actually made me own version in the same week that I pinned it. Miracle!

I started out with basic supplies. I had everything at home already except for the folder (which was $2.49 from the supermarket). I used two types of fabric (both left over from last year's Christmas Tree Skirt), some card stock, ribbon, buttons, and my trusty glue-gun.

 I decided to make a woven fabric cover for the front of the book - inspired by this pinboard from JDC. I started out by measuring out and then cutting my fabric into long strips.

 Next up I glued the edge of half the fabric strips to the top inside cover of the the folder and the other half of the fabric strips along the spine of the folder. I realise that probably makes no sense! Hopefully the photo below explains it better... Then it was just a matter of weaving each strip along and then hot gluing it to the underside of the folder.

Once I had finished weaving and gluing all of the fabric I went back and trimmed up all the loose threads.

I added a piece of plain white fabric to the back of the folder, and covered the inside with white card to hide all of the raw edges.

After all of that the folder wasn't closing very well. If I laid it down on the table it would just sit there half open. It wasn't the look I was going for so I decided to add some little buttons and a ribbon to keep it nicely closed when not in use.

I simply hot glued some ribbon to the back of a large button and then glued that to the front of the book. Then I glued another smaller button to the back and made a hole in the ribbon so that I could slip it over the back button and secure it.

Last up I added the letter M (for Max) to the front of the book. I just hand cut it from some card stock and glued it straight on. Then it was just a matter of punching holes into Max's birthday cards, adding in some dividers (A4 card) and clipping them into the folder. Simple!

 Now I have the perfect place to keep all of those birthday cards that I just can't bring myself to throw out!

 Tell me, what do you do with all of your children's birthday cards? Do you keep them somewhere special or throw them out the minute the party is over?


Thursday, June 28, 2012

20 Weeks

Yep, we're halfway!!

I had my 20 week scan today and I am beyond excited to say that everything went perfectly. We even took Max along with us so that he could 'meet' his little brother for the first time. Max squealed out loud when we showed him the baby on the tv screen and said 'that's my baby!'. He asked a million questions while we were in there about the jelly on my tummy, what the sonographer was doing, if the baby was coming out now and more. He is such a clever little guy :)

I feel the baby kick so much at the moment, so it was no surprise that he wriggled around for most of the ultrasound. We got to see everything we needed to in the end though and our baby is looking healthy and happy.

The absolute highlight for me was when we were watching the baby touch his face and put his fingers in his mouth in 3D. I looked over at Sean and Max and saw that Max was smiling and watching the monitor. As I said to Sean 'do you think Max understands what he's looking at?', Max lifted his hands up to his face just like the baby was doing and said 'look he's touching his face!'. Such a beautiful family moment!

This scan is a real turning point in our pregnancy, from now on in we are no longer considered to be high risk. Such a feeling of relief after the last 5 weeks of uncertainty.

Back on the 16th of May (my birthday, and 6 days after our 13 week scan) we got a phone call from the hospital saying that we had been placed into the high-risk category for genetic defects and that we would need to come in for genetic counseling.

We went in the very next day and they explained to us that whilst my scans looked normal, the blood-test results had indicated that my hormone levels were not in the 'normal' range. We decided to book in for an amniocentisis, but had to wait two and a half weeks before I was far enough along for the procedure to be possible. To be honest I took it pretty hard at first. I got really depressed and was convinced that the baby wasn't going to be ok. I couldn't shake the negativity and kept thinking that this was a continuation of all the health issues I had developed over the last couple of years (MS and the symptoms that accompany it). When I wasn't thinking about that, I was really scared that we would have the amnio, find out everything was ok and then lose the baby (a 1/100 risk that is associated with the test).

Thanks to the most amazing, supportive and positive husband and the support of our family and some of my closest friends I was able to turn myself around in the last week leading up to the amnio and start focusing on being positive, praying for my baby and being grateful for the beautiful family that I already have. Changing my mindset made a huge difference and by the day of the procedure I was really optimistic that we were going to have a positive outcome.

The amnio and scan was done at 16weeks +6 days and went really well, no issues at all and the baby looked really good on the scan. We got a phone call 24 hours later (almost to the minute) saying that our initial results came back showing that all of the baby's chromosomes were exactly as they were supposed to be. Sean was at home with me waiting for the call and I can honestly say that it was one of the happiest moments of our lives. We were elated! We also found out on that phone call that we would be having another boy. Double celebrations!

We were told that within two weeks we would get a phone call if anything abnormal showed up on the other tests and that if all went well at our 20 week scan we would no longer be considered high risk.

Which brings us to today. Our scan went perfectly and we got the confirmed results back from the long-term tests saying everything is a-ok :).

A very happy day for us here in the Riley household!!