theater clouds.

Now that I’m all caught up with blog posts, I’m excited to blog about all things baby related — sewing + knitting projects, thoughts/ideas, baby products.  Almost 2.5 months to go before they arrive, and so much to do!  I still have a couple photo sessions to finish editing, and a basement to finish cleaning, but I’m so eager to tackle the long list of projects I have in mind, figure out which cloth diapers I want to use for newborns, decide on a woven/stretchy wrap, pick a piece of artwork for the boys, etc.

Before Dhara was born, I knew I wanted to get her something special that she could hold onto as she grew.  And being that I’m an undercover independent/local art enthusiast, we decided on this piece for Dhara.  It now hangs above her crib in a vintage styled frame.  I think the same would only be appropriate for these two boys on the way.  I want something adventurous, boyishly whimsical, something artistic and that sparks the imagination.  I finally narrowed down my search to Theater Clouds by Elly Mackay.  Her stuff is amazing and so appropriate for children, especially her boy prints — I didn’t want anything cheesy.  I honestly think it’s easier to choose for a girl!  But we are leaning towards these two prints by Elly — one for each boy:

He Found The Rarest Of Thistles By His Rock In The Woods

and “In His World, He Was King

the following single print came in as a close second, but then meant both boys would somehow have to share their print, “Side By Side

I love Elly’s creative process.  Small Magazine says about her work, “The themes are dream-like with references to childhood and storybooks half remembered and half forgotten.”  She creates her images by painting on yupo paper and cutting it into layers and setting it up in a miniature theater.  She plays with lights and filters to create atmosphere and then takes photos of the scene.  Way cool.  Plus I just love the fact that Elly grew up in an old church in the country!

20 weeks!

I’m more than halfway there!!!  Ahhhh!!!  Today my babies are the length of a banana, and look like this in the womb.

As some of you know already, I had my 20 week ultrasound this week.  My mom came along with me since Greg couldn’t get out of a special week long class for work.  It was here I found out that we are having two baby boys!  It came as somewhat as a shock to me because I was almost sure, or let’s say expecting that it would be a boy and girl.  After the tech revealed the first gender, a boy, I was hugely relieved that I would get my boy!  But then when she revealed that the second was also a boy, I was kinda dumbfounded — not at all because I didn’t want two boys, but that I wouldn’t get another sweet little girl.  But then again, I have no grid for boys since I don’t have any, so I’m sure I’ll be saying the same for boys after these little guys join our family!  On a side note, I was also thinking, “What in the world am I going to do with all of Dhara’s clothes!”  TWO BOYS!

After the initial shock of two boys, I went ahead and texted Greg at his class — because he wanted to be one of the first to know, granted!  : )  I texted him from my mom’s phone, “It’s Susan…both boys!”  Greg texted back with a, “Praise God! We are going to have lots of fun!”  All the men in our families were ecstatic!  All the women were like, “Wow, what are we going to do now?”  : )  In the end, God knows we need two little rambunctious boys to liven things up a bit, not that Dhara doesn’t already add to the fun!

The fact that both are boys is still sinking in; I recently came across a photog’s blog where she photographed twin boys (with their older sister), and boy did it make my heart melt!  See here.  TWO BOYS!  Bring it!

Here are our little guys — both were ever so active!  They were cooperative for the tech doing the ultrasound, but sooo active and completely healthy and right on track in their growth based on the ultrasound, thank the good Lord.  I was initially worried that I wasn’t feeling enough movement for having 2 babies inside me, but I’ve been feeling more and more as I get farther along, and it was amazing to see how much they moved during the ultrasound, yet how little I actually felt.

baby A – weighing in at 13 ounces

baby B – weighing in at 12 ounces

One of the first things I did when I found out Dhara was a girl, was go shopping for some girl things.  For these little guys, I wanted two of these High Seas onies for a photoshoot — the perfect blend of vintage/retro, but it seems they are all sold out for now, bummer.  One thing is for sure, boys clothes are not as interesting as girl’s clothes, but it will be my aim to fix that.

How do I feel?  I threw up for the first time yesterday.  I was brushing my teeth in the morning and when I was ready to rinse, the dry heaves began.  Not fun, but ever so grateful that this pregnancy has been simple thus far.  Although, I don’t feel like I’m eating enough for twins, and when I do eat, I love seafood, yogurt, fruit, and pizza.  And although I’ve never really enjoyed a tall glass of milk, I’ve been using Dhara’s milk (full fat with cream on top!) from a local farm for cereal and my husband’s homemade masala chai (amazing! especially alongside a slice of warm pumpkin pie in the evening before bed.).

So 4 more months to go!  It could be a little less depending on when these guys want to come!  Twins are known for coming before full term, and I secretly hope they do!

the stewart family.

Again, kudos to Facebook for reuniting an old friendship.  Jainy and I went to high school together.  We met in Biology class.  Being that we are both malu’s, it was inevitable that we would eventually gravitate towards one another — Jainy with her cheery personality, and me with always something up my sleeve, we had loads of fun on our mini adventures (like walking through graveyards), hanging out and laughing hysterically.

Jainy and I lost contact after I switched high schools in 10th grade.  But we connected almost 13 years later via Facebook.  She’s now married to an awesome guy, Dwayne, and they both have an amazingly cute baby boy named Jayden.  This little guy has got some serious adorableness going on.  Jainy wanted some family portraits, so we decided to meet at the beautiful Brookside Gardens to capture her lovely little family in action.   It’s been so neat catching up with her in this season of our lives now that we get to talk about cloth diapers, sewing and knitting.  : ) Meet the Stewart’s.

new shop items!

Just a little peek at some new items in the shop!  I’m totally in love with the Indian inspired swaddle blankets.  Swaddle blankets are becoming more and more popular these days, so why not get a little boho with it?  I’ll definitely be making a batch of these come spring for our two little bambinos.  In addition to swaddle blankets, we’ve added quilts, wool flower clips, bibs and more.

midwife appointment.

I had my second prenatal appointment yesterday with Kathy Slone’s practice.  It’s the practice I switched to much later in my last pregnancy.  It’s a practice of 4 midwives.  I met with Kathy today — mid-sixties, has the most piercing blues eyes you’ve ever met, the kindest smile, and many years of natural birthing practices behind her.  This is the reason we decided to stick with her, and to a midwife in general when I was pregnant with Dhara.  We’ve decided to stick with her for this twins pregnancy as well.  It’s a good fit for Greg and I since we prefer something a little bit more homespun.

For all twin pregnancies, Kathy works with a highly specialized perintologist who will also be present at the birth in case complications arise.  Greg and I felt really comfortable upon hearing that this OB is head of the department and that he loves delivering breech babies rather than conducting a cesarean — hard to find that in this day and age.  He will also be in charge of reading all my ultrasounds every month and making sure both babies look good throughout the pregnancy.  So we really have the best of both [midwife/doctor] worlds, as Kathy says.  I also love that the office manager, Kim, knows exactly who I am when I call or come in for an appointment. My only dislike is that we have to drive 35-45 minutes to the midwife office and to the hospital, both of which are downtown; versus the local hospital which is 15-20 minutes away.  I was also looking forward to having a water birth, but I guess that’s not advisable with twins.  Maybe next time!  : )

At my appointment I measured nicely at 15.5 weeks and everything looks to be on track.  We, even Dhara, got to hear heartbeats.  I also love that all my questions were answered non-rushed and very laid back.  Kathy says that I’m short waisted, so come March, people will think I’m about to blow [oh no!], but that I can certainly go till at least 37/38 weeks.

So it looks like this twin thing is no joke.  It’s for real, for real.  I’ve been feeling great except for a case of sciatica which has been causing me discomfort since I was 7 weeks pregnant.  I also wake up periodically around 4 AM and can’t go back to sleep for an hour or two.  And most foods aren’t tasty, or I should say they aren’t satisfying.  I’m craving things like sushi, sushi, and more sushi, shrimp, deli sandwiches, chili, pizza, and grapes.  And yes, I know that I should be staying away from things like sushi and sandwiches, but we did indulge in sushi just once last week at a local sushi joint — and it was truly the best meal I’ve had in weeks!  [By the way, I got the cooked options.]

Anyway, we can’t wait till November end when we find out the genders of our babies!  Until then I don’t think I can begin all the sewing, knitting, and creating I want to do for these two new little ones!  More on this later.

custom crib bedding.

I recently had the pleasure of sending off a large brown paper package to a customer.  Back in the summer, a mama-to-be contacted me about crafting a crib bedding set based on a Ten Thousand Villages-esk/Indian/ethnic theme that would go hand in hand with her nursery.  She needed a quilt, bumper, and box pleat crib skirt.  Of course I jumped on the chance because what fun would that be!  I loved the combination of reds, yellows and oranges — it gave the bedding a real pop of expression and culture.

and lastly, a customer photo of it in action

annual camping trip.

It looks like I have lots of updating to do on the blog.  So much to catch up on and so much I want to say.  Let’s start with our fall camping trip in Pennsylvania. Seeing that we had a lovely time camping with family last year, it only seemed right to do it again this year, but with more family and friends.

Our tents lined the banks of Gifford State Park and overlooked its beautiful lake of shining waters [for you Anne of Green Gables fans].  It was officially Dhara’s second time camping, and what a good little camper she is!  Our little family of three loved getting cozy in our small tent filled with Pottery Barn quilts, as Greg would say.  He wouldn’t call it real camping since we weren’t roughing it, but not sure how you do that yet with a wee one.  Anyhow I love my quilts, and camping just wouldn’t be the same without three, or maybe four of them.  : )

As we were taking down our tents after 2 days of outdoor living, my cousin asked me if the same tent would work for next year with 4 people — little did we know there would be more than that.

our first night in the tent and she loved it!

the gregor snatched me and the dhara-girl away from the rest of the group one evening to watch the sunset in a secret location : )

watching the sun set

lilia + dhara



dhara + her daddy

sinking in.

Already at 13.5 weeks preggo, our very first ultrasound was only scheduled for two days ago.  This is a little late in the game because by this time, most people have already had 1-2 ultrasounds.  So we walked into Maternal and Fetal Medicine so very ready to see our little one — me, literally dying for this day to come.

The ultrasound tech spread some jelly on my belly and began to run the monitor back and forth over the jelly to locate the baby.  After noticing something on the screen, with an interesting tone she says, “So this is your first ultrasound?”  We responded with a “yes.”  She proceeds to say, “Well if you look over here, here’s your baby.  And if you look over here, here’s another baby.”  Greg and I both said, “What?!!”  The tech nodded with a smile on her pleasant face and said, “You are having twins.”  I couldn’t hold back the tears that were flowing down my face — I felt amazement, intimidation, shock, love.  I could tell the technician felt honored to be part of such a moment which didn’t happen very often at 13 weeks.

two babies

The Maternal and Fetal Center was all a buzz with the couple who didn’t know they were having twins!  Everyone looked at us and smiled.  As the receptionist scheduled a plethora of appointments for me, she looked up knowingly and said, “So you really didn’t know?” : )  I can assure you, we had no clue.  After getting my appointment card, my little family walked out into the sun not knowing what to say.  We just had big smiles on all our faces — Dhara not knowing what she was smiling about.  And that was that.

As for the babies, since each of them have their own placenta, amniotic sac, and umbilical chord, the babies are considered dichorionic twins (fraternal), which means they can look completely different and they will either be the same gender, or a girl and a boy.  Greg says it’s a girl and boy combination.  We will find out the end of November!

baby A

baby B

So it’s finally sinking in that we are going to be a family of 5 in about five months. It feels so weird to jump from a cozy 3 to a somewhat large 5 just like that. Somehow I feel like someone’s pressed the fast forward button on my life and now all of a sudden we will be parents to 3 babies under 3.  Greg and I are still somewhat in shock, but we are so so so very thrilled to see these two bambinos and are blessed to have the help of family and friends to guide us along the way.

one happy big sister

baby seylah.

I got the lovely opportunity to photograph beautiful Baby Seylah.  She’s the daughter of my good friends Sophy + Vince — here’s a photo shoot I did with them a few years back during my Good Elephant days when neither of us had children. So amazing what can happen in a short span of 3 years.  Sophy and I grew up together — we’ve known each other for over 20 years, so you could call us super close friends, but the relationship feels more like family.  Kinda like we’re cousins, or even sisters.  It’s so heartwarming to see her with children now — the latest being little Seylah.

a super sweet baby girl

eastern market.

My girlfriends and I decided to take my best friend to Capitol Hill for some good eats and a stroll around Eastern Market.  We ate at Good Stuff Eatery, which by the way, has the most amazing burgers ever.  It’s hands down better than Five Guys — which would probably be my second favorite burger.  I ordered the handcrafted Collette Burger with mushrooms and handcut french fries topped with rosemary and thyme — AMAZING.

The restaurant is a family operated business — one of the family members being Chef Spike from a past season of Top Chef.  Chef Spike is the head Chef, and he’s there everyday, so we got to see him in action as he cooked burgers.  We even got to see a tiff between him and his mom — Chef Spike ran off, he was definitely heated.  Not sure what it was about, but don’t let that stop you from trying Good Stuff.  You won’t regret it.

At Eastern Market, I stopped by my favorite stall, The Red Persimmon, and picked up a hand block printed nightie for my girl.  Lately I’ve been coming up with designs for baby/toddler nightgowns for the Susie Mey shop.  When I saw this one at Eastern Market, it just confirmed that there’s a niche of people looking for the old world style and comfort that a simple nightie brings.  These days women, and especially girls, don’t wear them much, but I will forever be a fan of vintage inspired cotton nightgowns.  They are feminine and beautiful, and what girl wouldn’t want to feel like that?

hand block printed nightie from eastern market