8.29.2014

Naming Our 3rd Human

We are serious about names around here. Both of our big kids' names come with all sorts of built-in prayer over their identities and futures and declarations we have made about who we want them to be (I realize this might sound a little culty/commune loco--no worries. I used to be the same way until I married into this family, and was given my ration of Kool-Aid). 

We have written the stories of our processes of naming Judah David and Layla Embryand seeing them grow up and grow into themselves, we know we made the right calls (and that God gave us these names for them) because they just SO ARE Judah and Layla (even to the folks who thought these names were straight bonkers or even ugly when they first heard them).

Now we have another baby to name! And with only 6 weeks to go, we might want to speed it up.


Third time is hard. You have to make sure the name fits with the existing kids (Judah, Layla and baby Gertrude just doesn't have the cohesion we're looking for), but maybe you've already used your super-faves on your existing children. Of course since I was expecting this babe to be a boy, we had several boy names that we LOVED all ready to go, so another adjustment to the GIRL announcement was jettisoning those gems and rustling up a girl name from scratch.

It did not ease my adjustment into the pink pool when Jesse suggested (hours after finding out the gender, when I was still dealing with my weird feelings) a few names that just repelled me--not because they are ugly in and of themselves, but just because they super duper weren't my taste for a child in our family. "Neena" and "Jael" were two that literally made me cry when he texted me. I was like, "IS IT POSSIBLE YOU WANT ME TO HATE THIS CHILD!?!?! AND ISNT JAEL SUPERMAN'S DAD!?!?!" 

He took a break from suggestions at that point.


Once I was back on planet earth emotionally and appropriately excited about this little lady, we set out with a wish list of what we would ideally find in a name. The parameters were:

1. A meaning we could feel good about
2. Unique (I'm already stressed that Layla is climbing the charts!)
3. Fitting in with our Judah/Laya theme (which I guess is a tad hippie/weird, but also classic, and having an "UH" sound at the end wouldnt hurt)
4. That indefinable X factor where it just feels like "yes, that is who this baby is."

I also looooooove unusual boy-names-as-girl-names. Not so much the ones that have already been done, but more making them up myself.  One of our closest friends is named Lukas, it has a great meaning, and I would ADORE that as a girl name, but with our last name, it could never happen. "Lukas Dukas," anyone? I also do not hate Gideon as a girl's name either. Judge if you will!

So i focused on the cool/unique side of things and Jesse went deep into the meanings (remember how went into the rabbinical notes from the Talmud for Layla's!). We both have full veto power at all times.

After I found a favorite that same day, we tossed it around for awhile. Jesse loved the meaning but we hadn't had that LOCK IT IN moment yet. Oh but it came.

So we are very excited to share with our daughter's name:

pronounced just like "Noah"

The first thing we noticed the day of the ultrasound was this kid's bicycle legs! It seriously looked like she was on a recumbent bike just pedaling her little heart out!  She has only amped up that activity since then. NEITHER of my first two moved like this. It got so hilariously crazy that I actually googled "fetal seizures" because sometimes it feels like she's quite literally having a fit in there.

the pic is blurry not because the ultrasound wand was moving, but because SHE was!

So imagine my surprise when I decided I really liked this pretty little name and went to see what it meant. It means "movement/motion" in hebrew! Um, okay that will do nicely. But I don't JUST want her to be about insane, frenetic motion--we're not looking to speak a little ADHD dervish into being (though that might be on the ticket anyway thanks to my DNA). And then Jesse found out that Noa also means "love/affection" in Japanese. Oh yes...

With typical Jesse speed and brilliance (and dashing good looks), he combined these two translations into a beautiful statement of what we want our daughter to be in her life: Love in Motion.

And obviously this name slides quite nicely into the triumvirate: Judah, Layla, and Noa.

So pretty early on we knew this was our A #1 choice. But the kicker of THIS IS HER NAME didnt happen until Jesse made a really cool family connection about a month ago. One day he said, "Hey, wasnt your grandmother's name "Genoa?" And I almost started crying! My beloved grandmother, my dad's mom, (known as Mano to me) who died when I was 11, had "Noa" built right there into her name!


looks like i inherited my gift of blinking in photos from her.

And boy was Mano love in motion. She was a sassy, classy, always-on-the-go broad whose love I felt like no one else's (that look on my face above is how I ALWAYS remember feeling around her).

My most powerful memory of her is spending the night at her house when she was dying from cancer, beautiful in her headscarf, and she heard me say something about a painful plantar's wart on my foot (geez, 11-year old Keight, have some perspective about ailments and complaints!). I will never forget her kneeling at my feet to soak my hurting foot in a epsom salt bath. If that wasnt love in motion, I'm not sure what is.

Such a poignant, Christlike moment that used to make me cry with regret after she had died, thinking I had mistreated my grandmother when she was sick, but that I now know was just one instance--in a lifetime full of them--of Mano putting her heart for others into action by serving and loving them. That is a legacy I will rejoice to see carried out in my own child.

And so we had our lockdown moment. Our baby is Noa.



We are still tinkering with middle names, the frontrunner being one that Judah of all people made up out of the blue. 

We know this is an unusual name for most people (though a friend in our small group has a sweet niece named Noa who goes to our church too, so ours won't be the very first that our church people have heard this name!) And we are already chuckling through the fun awkward silences after we tell people the name and they just so don't get it (we had this a LOT with Judah, and are much less likely to break down about it now), and the people who think that because the baby isnt born yet, the name could still be changed or that we are open to suggestions. LOL big time.

She will probably have a lifetime ahead of her saying "Without the H" and hearing the word "NO" and thinking someone is calling her. Luckily, if this gets too annoying she can just remember she is "love in motion" and not "fist in motion." 





8.12.2014

A Pregnant Stitch Fix!

It's been half of a forever since I did a Stitch Fix post. And if you'd told me I would break that streak with a pregnant fix, I dont think i would have believed you. This is because Stitch Fix doesn't carry dedicated maternity clothes, but if you've been pregnant before, you may have found that lots of cuts of non-pregnant pieces still totally work during pregnancy--even if it means going up a size.  Plus, I wanted to have a firsthand pregnant fix of my own to be able to share with yall...so I ordered a summer box in the midst of my belly expansion AND the high-summer of Georgia.

In my notes to my stylist when I ordered my pregnant box, I decided to trust them enough to just say, "Hey, I'm gonna be HUGE, it's gonna be hot...do me right, if you dare," and then waited to see what those fashion geniuses came up with. 

Just to save you the suspense, all of these items I am showing you are KEEPERS (Layla is thrilled)! 


When opened the box, my eye was immediately sucked in by this awesome print. I was thrilled to pull it out and find that it is a flowy, happy, comfy maxi dress!


It was a deal at $60 since it makes me feel like $60 million!  I saw a photo of this dress on a non-pregnant woman and it looked fantastic on her, so I am extra excited to keep this baby rocking for the long haul. God bless the maxi.

I posted this pic on my instagram with the hashtag #pregnantjumping, expecting to find a mid-air sorority of preggos to join...but mine was the first and only pic! That's okay. Imma start this show.


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I'm pretty sure I would never leave my house while pregnant in the summertime if it werent for my trusty cadre of jersey skirts. I would just lie eternally pantsless in my house and order delivery (which isnt that far from my actual, after-work, reality ). 

I have some jersey skirts that are true maternity and some that arent. It doesnt seem to make a difference because the jersey is so stretchy that I can just hike it up a few inches to get a wider waistband for my expanding belly. 


This sunkist orange striped maxi from Stitch Fix cost more than I usually pay for a jersey skirt (at $40), but the saturated, summery color and the fact that it will definitely be a winner when I'm thinner made it a keeper.  (the necklace is from the fabulous Jones Market and I adore it!)



I love how the stripes come together in a chevron at the hip seams too

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Here was my first attempt at a Stitch Fix pregnant top:


It's white, it's jersey, it's flowy below the waist, it's long and--wait for it!--IT'S SMOCKED! Some of yall who know my violent aversion to smocking might be laughing in my face right now, but GUYS! This isnt the hive-inducing horror of the kiddie-smocked clothing that is so popular here in the deep south. CANNOT HANDLE.

This is COOL smocking that creates great texture and visual interest on the bodice of a staple white shirt sleeve top. And I feel good about being able to wear this piece after pregnancy as a more tunic-length top (which I love since my hips are the part of me I like to minimize).

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How about an accessory? Those are friendly to everyone--regardless of what may or may not be in your uterus at the time!

I received a delicate gold layered strand necklace with two chevron details.

I am writing this post away from home and realize that I never got a shot of my necklace up close, so I borrowed this photo (though I think I could rock braids like this!) source

Here is where the necklace falls on me. I love it for sneakily making me look fancier in a simple tee top than I might without it.


And this grey top is actually piece #5! This shirt is a lovely heather gray that looks like plain t-shirt material at first glance, but is actually an incredibly light sweater-type knit. Like someone took a thick sweater pattern but knitted it with eensy thin, light thread. So it looks really interesting like a sweater, but feels so light and airy-cool like a summery tee.

A solid gray tee with some character is such a great go-to layering piece and again will be great even after baby girl busts out.


extra love for the extra long hem in back. I live in constant fear of butt crack exposure! also: Birks are back, baby! I scored a used pair off of eBay and I feel so hippie german chic in them while secretly pampering my pregnant footsies.

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So there you have it-5 massive winners from Stitch Fix from a 31-weeks pregnant girl! They are warlocks who make me happy.


 ready to schedule your first box? give us a click!

8.05.2014

Baby-Making

Don't you just wish this post was a play-by-play of how Jesse and I made our baby? I must dash your skeevy little hopes of a true romance essay (though Jesse could totally be a hairy-chested love novel cover model, obviously), for this is about things I made for a baby.

One of my very best friends (and frequent appearer on the blog), Lena, is having a baby girl who is due 27 days before ours! This is Lena's first baby and you know those non-mom friends you have who are so weird or hilarious or easily-grossed out about YOUR pregnancy that you are like, "wow, I cannot wait to see how you are when youre pregnant?" well, Lena is definitely one of those, and she has super-duper not disappointed in being highly entertaining as she discovers the manifold joys and WTF's of gestating a baby in your ladyparts.

Lena and her husband are godparents to our kid,s and Lena was right *there* when Layla was born as our official birth documenter. Like SHAZAAM up in the perineum with the DSLR (tell me THATs not true friendship). She wrote a wonderful and hilarious account of the birth that is all the more enjoyable when you realize the girl who penned this post 4 years ago is giving birth in 6 weeks.

Another thing about Lena is that she is one of the most generous people I have ever met and is a legendary and prolific gift-giver. So when the invitation to her baby shower arrived, I knew I had to step it up and come strong.

Here's what baby Finley Elaine has waiting for her on the other side from her Auntie K8 (the pics are crazy over-saturated and blown out for some reason and I have no patience to fix them. Apologies to your retinas):

a herringbone baby quilt that was shockingly simple to put together and then incredibly difficult not to keep for myself.

the quilting pattern just followed the zig zag of the front 1/4" from the seams on either side. the backing is a snuggly flannel in Lena's signature grey (girlfriend LOVES a neutral)


 I'm so glad I went for the single little chevron of the backing fabric within the herringbone pattern. And the black and white stripe binding is just crispy goodness.


 i added the monogram to the back side for personalization but also to prevent myself from stealing it. I had to hand-applique the name on to avoid quilt lines through the name or backward name stitches showing up on the front (if I had machine stitched the letters on...tricky conundrum)


 taking pictures of this finished project was way more challenging than expected. I spent about 15 solid minutes getting this view all set up on the wall, then waddled back into position and snapped the first pic. Are you freaking kidding me?! My head almost exploded in this moment.

I was going to just give the one gift of the quilt, but then I just couldn't stop. I haven't made one thing for my new baby girl yet, but I was off on a tear for Lena's. 

 
matching onesie and baby leggies (tutorial here from another BFF, raechel) combo. love this little ATLien already.


another combo with a bow (I am expecting a head full of hair on this babe from the get-go since Lena and Elliot have thick, lush locks aplenty)

And then one last little touch for baby's room...or I guess wherever Lena wants to put it. Her beloved NYC:

Elliot proposed to Lena atop 30 Rock and they're pregnancy announcement pic was taken there too, so it' felt right to bring a little happy, colorful big apple into baby girl's space. (pattern from my favorite shop)

The shower was unreal. I ate about a kilo of bleu cheese (unpasteurized because I'm a rebel like that) and 4 large shortbread cookies, and washed that healthy meal down with a liter (mama's feeling metric today!) of sparkling punch. Ain't nobody loves a lady-shower style punch like this chick! Lena got SO MUCH wonderful baby swag and we all enjoyed staring at her opening gifts for 2 hours straight trying not to be awkward. 

what is wrong with us? I complain, but this is a pretty spot-on representation of our whole friendship. (note to self: IRON the shirt after it arrives in the mail in its flat-packed state)


30 weeks and 40 weeks. and my spiritual gift of closing my eyes at the EXACT moment of shutter click shows no signs of diminishing. 

I'm not sure if I have ever been as excited for a baby's arrival that wasn't occurring in my own birth canal. Baby Finley hasn't taken her first breath yet, but is already crazy-loved and prayed for. I cannot wait to get my hand on that little nugget--I might not give her back...especially if she's wrapped in that quilt.