Anna Claire

Daisypath Happy Birthday tickers

Jack Henry

Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Kathy Update

A few weeks ago, I posted a "pregnancy" picture of Kathy and me and said that she could be having her baby any day now. Kathy delivered Marley Sophia Harper (in a record short labor!) on December, 18 (the day before her big brother Ty's birthday).

She is even more precious in person!

12/25/2007 - Merry Christmas!

For our last Christmas "pre - Baby Grau", we did our usual tradition of attending mass and exchanging gifts with the Graus on Christmas Eve and driving to the Driggers' on Christmas Day.

My brother and Eric both got Guitar Hero for their Wii's. They played together a bunch and Eric has continued to play his every night since we've been back home :)

After spending a few days in Columbus, we had to get back to Chattanooga to get ready for a retirement party for Eric's dad. We were a little nervous about hosting a dinner for 15 but we were very excited with how the party turned out! Here is a video clip from the party and you can see pictures under "Photo Albums" on the right.

12/20/2007 - 23 Week Doctor's Appt.

Today was my 23 Week check-up. Since my doctor was delivering a baby at my 20 Week visit, he did a thourough scan of the anatomy this time. Here's what he told us:
  • Our baby has a 3 vessell umbilical cord (which means the umbilical cord developed properly)
  • The spine is fully formed and has good curvature
  • From viewing the nose and lips, our baby does not have a cleft pallette
  • All of the organs (stomach, bladder, kidney, liver, etc.) look good
  • The heartbeat is in a good range (about 132)...we still love to hear it!
  • The bone measurements indicate that the baby is growing at a rate that puts her within 2 days of our due date

He wasn't able to get as good of a view of the genitalia as the PA did (just based on how the baby was positioned), so he gave us a 95% probablility of girl as opposed to the 99% that we got last time. We'll continue to check on the gender, but as you can see by the previous post, we're proceeding forward assuming that Baby Grau is a girl!

He didn't print off any new ultrasound pics this time (she still looks pretty much the same :)). We'll post another update when I go back in 4 weeks.

12/16/2007 - Nursery Bedding

Here is a picture of our bedding. I actually found it in June on clearance at PB Kids. Even though I wasn't even pregnant yet :), I knew it was exactly what I would want if we had a little girl one day, so with it being on clearance I went ahead and got it!

I also got the crib skirt and bumper.

Here's a close up of the bumper. At first, I wanted a white crib to go with the bedding but I think the black will be more versatile if we have a boy later and when we convert the crib into a full size bed. And now that I see it together, I think the bright colors are really going to "pop" against the black.

You could maybe tell in the crib pics that we've been experimenting with a paint color. We decided to paint another sample in between the white trim, since the paint color that's already in the room was kind of skewing our perception of the color. We still think it may be a little bright/light since this room gets so much natural light but we're still thinking about it.

The only piece of furniture that we have purchased for the nursery is the crib. We're going to use Eric's old dresser and paint it black. I found these drawer knob pulls on E-Bay that coordinate with the bedding. I was very excited about this find!

These prints are another E-Bay find that coordinates with the bedding. My cousin, Kristy, gave me these at our gift exchange this weekend.

This is another Christmas gift from Kristy and Matt. It's a super cute toiletry bag for me to take to the hospital. It will also work great as a smaller diaper bag.

Here is an updated belly shot from our weekend in Blairsville. You can see more pics from the weekend under Photo Albums on the right.

12/02/2007 - Crib

Here is our first nursery pic!

We ordered this crib on Nov. 18. They told us it would take 10 - 12 weeks for it to come in but then we got a call on the 26th saying that it had arrived!! I talked Eric into making an "emergency" trip to Atlanta on Saturday to pick it up, but he was the one that decided to put it together when we got home around midnight (I think someone else is just as excited about it as I am :))

We plan to paint the walls some shade of green, right after Christmas. So, we'll continue to post updates as the nursery becomes more decorated.

The Harpers came over for dinner tonight and Kathy and I decided that we needed a picture of the two of us while we're both still pregnant. Kathy is due on December 23, so she could be having her little girl any day now!

I have added a link under "Photo Albums" to some of our Christmas Decorations.

11/26/2007 - 20 Week Doctor's Appt.

We're having a..................


Probably the only thing actually indicating girl to you from this picture are the words "girl parts" :) Unfortunately, this image is not as clear as what we were able to see on the ultrasound screen. Last time I didn't even realize that we were looking at the genitalia when he said "girl" but this time it was a lot more obvious.

At first I thought that I might not even have this appointment today b/c when we showed up they told us that my doctor was away delivering a baby (pretty acceptable excuse for an OB I suppose :)). So instead of seeing him, the physician's assistant did the ultrasound and gave a 99% probability that Baby Grau is a girl.

Here are some other pictures that she took:

This is a picture of the bottom of the feet. Baby Grau was all over the place today! I think I have actually felt her move a couple of times. It's still very subtle but I have definitely felt a few "flutters".

I thought this picture was really sweet. You can tell that she likes to rest with her hand up by her face.

My doctor had planned to do a full anatomy scan this week to make sure all of the organs are okay but we will have to wait until the next visit for that. Since my next visit fell during the week of Christmas, we're actually going to go a little sooner than four weeks (Dec. 20).

Here is an updated belly shot:

My "baby bump" has arrived!

To see details of a recent event leading to "enhancement" of the baby bump, check out the Thanksgiving photos on the right :)

11/01/2007 - 16 Week Doctor's Appt.

We were hopeful in finding out the gender of Baby Grau today but we're pretty much where we were before we went!

Based on what our doctor could see, he's thinking girl.
But it's still a little early to say for sure (he gave us a probability of 75%). I think we will have a much better idea at my next visit when I'm 20 weeks.

In the meantime, here are some updated photos of Baby Grau.

We could see so much more detail this time! It actually made it harder to tell what was what! Thank goodness that our doctor is there to intepret for us. This is a picture of the spine. A lot of the bone structure has developed at this point.

Here is a picture of the baby's leg. I can expect to start feeling some movement in the next few weeks. Maybe "she" will be a soccer player like mom :) At this point the baby has actually grown so much, that it's hard to get an ultrasound picture with the entire body in view!

This picture scares me a little bit, but I realize that the baby still has about 24 weeks of development to go. Eric pointed out that you can actually see that the right and left hemisphere of the brain are distinctly developing. Pretty cool stuff!

So best we can tell, everything is still going smoothly. Our doctor took several measurements that confirmed that the baby was developing how he would expect, based on my due date. He will do a more thorough scan of the anatomy at my 20 week visit.

10/27/2007 - Halloween Tailgate

Happy Halloween!

At some point, I decided that if I was pregnant at Halloween then I wanted to dress up as "barefoot and pregnant". Well, it was too cold to go barefoot and I don't exactly look pregnant at this point, but we used that basic idea for the "theme" of our costumes.

These pictures were taken while tailgating at the TN/SC game this Saturday. Since we decided to tailgate in Knoxville instead of having a Halloween party, we just brought Halloween to the tailgate :) People kept coming over to see our "little jack russell". Yeah right. They really just wanted to see if our hair was real, since from a distance we looked pretty darn authentic and hey, we were in Tennessee :)

You can see the other tailgate pictures under "Photo Albums" on the right.

10/28/2007 - 16 Week Belly

At this point I really just look like I've put on a few extra pounds in the mid-section. Hopefully I will have a more distinguishable "baby bump" soon!

10/20/2007 - Locks of Love

Over the past two years, I have been growing my hair out to be long enough to donate 10" to Locks of Love (and still have a little bit left over!). Today was the day of the big haircut...

Exactly 10"...I can't afford to give them anymore!

Here we go!

Did I just make a huge mistake!?!

Nah. I love my new haircut and some child is going to get a nice chunck of hair! Plus, with the pre-natal vitamins that I'm taking, it's going to grow even faster than normal!

10/01/2007 - 12 Weeks


Baby Grau!

This is our 12 week ultrasound's the first one where we can actually tell it's a baby. And I may be a little biased, but to me it looks like the baby is waving and saying "Hi Mom!" :)

Here is a picture of Mandy at 12 weeks. She has agreed to play this game as long as it remains fun :)

So far, our doctor tells us that everything is progressing how he would expect. Mandy is feeling great and has not had any morning sickness (which after confirmation from the doctor, is a good thing). We love going to doctor's visits and hearing the heartbeat (we heard it for the first time at our very first visit at just 5 1/2 weeks!). Our next appointment is November 1.

08/18/2007 - The Big News

So, we've been in the house for two weeks now and we're finally starting to feel a little settled. We have the majority of the boxes unpacked and the furniture set up where we think it will go. We're just starting to think about the new furniture that we want (well at least one of us is :)) when we discover the big news. At around 4:00 this morning, Mandy took a pregnancy test that clearly displayed "Pregnant" and totally transformed our newly settled lives back into planning mode!

So instead of seeing pictures of a lovely decorated home (we'll get there one day) we have decided to continue the BLOG with baby/mommy/nursery updates. We don't plan on providing quite as many details as we did with the house building (some things just demand more privacy!) but with so many of our family members and friends living out of town, we decided this would be the best way to keep everyone updated.

Interesting tid bit: The picture up top was taken today!

08/01/2007 - Move In Day

Today was the first day that we were able to start moving stuff into the house. While the guys moved the heavy stuff, Mandy began lining the cabinets in preparation for unpacking dishes.

Here's a shot of the guys in action! A special thanks to Eric's dad, Josh Harper and Brandon Rodgers for helping out night after night, load after load!

Unfortunately, this is the view of the kitchen after only one evening of moving!

On Friday, Eric was nice enough to bring over a few furniture pieces (rather than leaving them for the movers on Monday) so that we would have somewhere to sit!

Here's a shot of the Grau men setting up our bed.

Mandy's mom came up the first weekend that we moved in and helped to get the kitchen set up. Daisy talked her into to taking a little TV break :)

Day 163 - 07/27/2007

Almost ready to move in. Boxes are packed and IOU's are called in. We should be moving in starting late next week. The next pictures will show a much more cluttered and disorganized house...but we'll be in!

Our bathroom with the finishing touches on it.

Here is the sitting are in our bedroom, along with the separate closets. Mandy is excited about having her own closet...she better not try to steal any of my closet space!

Here are our reading lights...Eric's "bright" idea :)

Here is one of our two upstairs bedrooms.

And the other...

Eric working hard to install volume controls for the in ceilling speakers...good thing we can't read his thoughts right now.

The builder and trim carpenter were able to come up with a fix for the handrail that was acceptable to the inspector. They had to add a few extra "twist" spindles, but it turned out very nice in the end.

Day 155 - 07/19/2007

We have power! We have passed our final electrical inspection and were able to have the power turned on in the house. We did not pass our building inspection becuase the spacing b/w the spindles on the hand-rail was too wide where we have the scroll spindles. The trim carpenter will be out next week to fix this.

As you can see, we have turned on the lights in the house to see if it looks any does! They should have started sanding the hardwoods today, but for some reason, they did not. If they don't want to work the WHOLE weekend, they need to get busy.

On a side note...our progress has not been impacted by rain because we received little to no rain during the past 6 months...until now! We have been trying for over a week to get our irrigation system installed. The installer has had to dig out his trenches twice so far. He is expecting to finish tomorrow, but they are calling for more rain, so we will have to see.

Here is a picture of our kitchen with the countertops installed. The kitchen looks so different with the lights on. It is still day-light outside and all of the lights in the kitchen are on...that is why it is so bright inside.

Here's a closeup of the countertops we chose.

This is our powder room on the main floor. We have not put any pictures of this room on here before, because there were not any lights in this room.