Welcome to the World, Grace Katharine

Today, I’m honored to introduce you to our brand new baby girl, Grace Katharine.  Grace was born Thursday, August 7th at 2:34 PM, weighing 7 lbs 1oz and 19 inches long.

She has been our amazing Grace and our hearts are full welcoming another girl into our family.

I keep saying to Graham how wonderful it is to have another baby and to have two children.  We love this sweet, beautiful, precious little one and the strong bond she is already forming with her big sister.

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I thought I’d share with you how we picked the name Grace.  Back when I was twenty weeks pregnant, we went in for a routine ultra sound where they found something that required extra testing.  As any mother and father would be, we were nervous and frightened for our baby’s health, even though the odds were in our favor.  While waiting for the test results to come back, I wanted to go to a church to say some prayers for our little girl.  I decided that we should go to the Grace Cathedral in San Francisco as they also had an art installation by Anne Patterson that I wanted to see.

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The moment Graham, Josie and I walked through the cathedral’s doors, we felt at peace.  We took in the glory of the art and the cathedral.  It was a calm and peaceful Sunday afternoon and there weren’t that many people in the church.  It was quiet, allowing for reflection, prayer and faith to build that all would be okay with our baby.  We walked the labyrinth twice; Graham carried Josie and I had my hand on my belly.  We then walked around the cathedral and lit a candle at every spot where there were candles to light.  We stopped at each candle and prayed together as a family for our baby.  Finally, we sat in a pew and had some quiet reflection.  We left feeling faithful and much of our worries were put at ease in the sacred space.  It was one of the most meaningful moments I’ve ever had in a church and it brought me closer to my family in ways I can’t describe.

We were expecting to receive the results in three to four days following our visit to the Grace Cathedral.  However, unexpectedly, I received a call the next morning.  The results came back negative and all was in the clear with our baby.  We were having a healthy baby girl.

Grace at home

Graham and I had made a pact to not discuss names while we were waiting for the test results.  When the happy news came back, we were both eager to discuss names.  Graham came home from work that day and said that he had a name in mind; I said that I did too but I was really hooked on it and I was hoping he would like my name.  Graham wanted us to say our names at the same time but I chickened out (biggest regret ever).  So I said the name that I was thinking of first; it was Grace, the exact name Graham had in mind, for the exact same reason.

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She is our amazing Grace.  She is a wonderful miracle who we are incredibly blessed to have.  Our hearts are full and we are so grateful our prayers were answered.

Grace has also popped up in other moments before she was even known to be in our lives.  When my dad was in hospice, he was very confused with cancer in his brain.  He continually tried to get out of bed but he was too weak to walk so my mom and I tirelessly tried to keep him in bed or put him back to bed.  One day, I decided to sing him his favorite church song that he said his mother sang famously at their church growing up; it was Amazing Grace.  I sat at the edge of his bed and sang it in repeat; it had this beautiful calming effect on him and he stayed in bed while I sang.

Thinking of my dad, and wanting the continuity of one of his favorite songs passed down to our children, I sing “Amazing Grace” to Josie when she is upset crying at night or she’s had a big fall and she just needs to be held and sung too.  By the second verse, Josie has almost always settled into my chest, gulped down her tears and begins to find peace again.

We chose the middle name Katharine after a growing line of Katharine’s in my family.  I have always been proud to be a Katharine, as is my mother and my Great Grandmother.  I hope that Grace  shares the pride that I do to be named after such strong, beautiful women.

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Grace has brought all of this peaceful joy into our lives.  She is calm the moment she lies on my chest and she does remarkably well with her sister’s “helping” hands poking and prodding at her.

Above all else, I can’t wait to see all that Grace grows to be.  We are forever thankful to have her here.

August 20, 2014 at 5:00 AM 12 comments

Bassinet Bedding

As I’ve mentioned, we don’t have a crib in the nursery.  We’re just going to wait it out and see if Josie transitions to a big girl bed before the baby needs a crib; otherwise, we’ll take a trip to Ikea one day and buy a second crib in a hurry.  In the meantime, I have this absolutely beautiful hand me down bassinet.

I wanted to do a custom bassinet sheet since I didn’t get to put together bedding for a crib.  Last year, I got some remnant fabric from Rikshaw Design sample sale and I had that made into a bassinet sheet.  I just picked it up yesterday and I’m so excited about it…

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If you don’t know about Rikshaw Design, then I’m happy to introduce you.  It’s one of the all time cutest shops and a fantastic place for some mommy and me looks (which I’m all about).  Rikshaw Design is a local company, based out of Marine, and Katherine, the owner, is the nicest ever.

They are currently having a major summer sale so act fast…

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For the wee ones…

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All items available here.

Happy Friday!

August 1, 2014 at 5:43 AM 4 comments

Breakfast Nook Wishes

Our breakfast room would be so much better utilized if it had an L shaped breakfast built in nook.  Here is the real estate shot of our breakfast nook (with previous owners furniture)

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I would like a booth similar to this one that I did for a client last year…

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In keeping with the style of our Spanish style home, I would like to do a camel faux leather tufted on the back and not tufted for the seat.  I’m thinking somewhere along these lines for the fabric -

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We already have the chandelier that’ll go over the table, it’s a very fun chandelier from Stray Dog Designs but mine was one they did for Anthropologie (no longer sold at the store).

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I would love to get a custom table made that would fit perfectly in the space with a base like this but powder coated white:

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Finally, we would have space on the other side of the table for chairs (once the high chairs are gone), in which case I would go for these Serena and Lily chairs:

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There you have it!  My design plan.  But, like all good things, they take time and for now, I’ll just ruminate on the design.

July 30, 2014 at 5:18 AM 2 comments

Bahama Chic

My family is on vacation; Graham’s parents just returned from Hawaii and his sister is in the Bahamas.  I’m due to give birth very, very soon; for once, I actually lack an itch to be on their vacations.  BUT, if I weren’t so pregnant, I would be chomping at the bit to ride along in their suitcases.  One place that I’d love to be is at this Bahama house designed by Alessandra Branca and featured in Lonny.

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You know I’m feeling the various shades of pinks, the geometric patterns and the crisp white walls.  This house has officially fallen into number 1 dream beach house.

July 29, 2014 at 5:48 AM Leave a comment

DIY

I’m not much of a DIYer.  More of a DIFM.  Why do it yourself when I can have some Do It For Me?  This is a trait I inherited from my father.  I highly recommend it.

Despite this theory, I broke out my DIY skills for the nursery art.  I took hair bows and smashed them between Ikea Malm frames at about the center of the frame.  Ta Da…

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I even tried to hang them myself but I’m really bad at getting them hung in a straight line.  I’m hoping I can find someone to DIFM (do it for me)…any takers?

Happy Friday, everyone!  We’ll be laying low and finishing up some touches on the nursery, doing laundry, installing car seats, setting up massive contraptions to get the new baby to sleep and be happy – oh and hanging bow art in a straight line.

July 25, 2014 at 5:00 AM 2 comments

Ouch!

Remember when I said that I wanted to do wall to wall jute as carpeting in our new home?  Well, I imagined it all over the place.  Then, I priced it out (it’s actually much more reasonably priced then other carpet alternatives) and “jute all over the house” got shoved into pipe dream mode.

That is, until I hurt myself.  The carpet the previous owners had in the nursery was so threadbare that the nails were coming up.  They literally stabbed my bare feet a couple of times.  Ouch!

We actually HAD to remove the carpet and put in a new one.  So, I dug into my pipe dream vault and found some fantastic jute carpeting.  I absolutely love the way it looks.

You have seen this little corner of the nursery with the old carpet…

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And now with the new…

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My genius sister in law gave me the fantastic advice that I should get “hurt” all over the house to accomplish more pipe dreams.

These are the ones I’ve come up with…

“The stairwell carpet is so threadbare I slipped on it.  We need Stark Antelope carpet immediately”

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“Every time I walk into our living room, I sneeze.  I’m absolutely certain it’s the carpet; we must replace it with hardwood”

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“I’m going blind looking at Josie’s blank built in shelving; it needs to be covered with wallpaper”

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Feel free to use my excuses in your own home.  And remember to come back here for sound marriage advice.

Oh, and in other great news, the carpet matches Josie’s hair.  Happy accident?  I think not.  Very much planned.

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July 22, 2014 at 5:17 AM 3 comments

Finished Space

I made  a promise to myself that I would finish one space before the baby was born.  Luckily, I’m not overly ambitious.  I chose a wall.  A single wall. Aiming high.

Said wall is the landing at the bottom of our stairs.  Our front door opens up into the living room and I wanted some sort of spot to feel like the entry way.  So about six feet away from the front door are stairs and the landing serves as our entryway.

Before…

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And now…

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I love how it turned out!

I got to use wallpaper for the first time and it was all I hoped for and more.  I got the grasscloth here and I’m really impressed with it.  The pink Blu Dot console table I purchased five years ago and saved up for months to buy it.  It still is the furniture piece I would take with me  in a fire.  Can you imagine – my huge nine month pregnant belly, my toddler in one arm and the console table in the other?  Priorities.  The mirror is Serena and Lilly.  The bowl was a gift from my parents about seven years ago; it’s from Gumps.  The lamps are Jonathan Adler but were a New York City craigslist score about three and half years ago.  The precious dog is from Home Goods.

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Now, everyone can come over, ignore every single unfinished room and feast their eyes on my stair landing.  Honestly, guests have been known to walk right by the landing and I have been known to turn them around and make them look at it.  Don’t you wanna come over now?

Technically, it’s not completely finished; I’m on the hunt for the perfect white porcelain basket weave umbrella stand to put opposite the dog.  A decorators job is never finished, I tell ya – even for a just a wall.

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In other news, last week, I had mentioned that we would have our final pre-baby BBQ and my ideas for the tablescape.  Well, on the day of, I was feeling very girly so I switched gears to pink; I’m thinking the girl we have arriving in about two and a half weeks has put pink on my brain.  So, here is the little table I put together for a fun BBQ with friends…

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And that’s all the news from Lake Wobegon.

July 21, 2014 at 5:17 AM 3 comments

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Hi, welcome to my interior design blog. This is my little spot to attempt to express my design style and to show wonderful inspirations for making a home. I hope you enjoy it!

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