Thursday, September 30, 2010

A Photoshoot with Will and Drew

Before I even met Will and Drew I'd begged their parents to let me take some pictures of them. I love learning about photography, and baby photography is something I think I'll be doing a lot of in the coming months! DeeDee and Chris were gracious enough to let me practice on their twins.
These little buddies are just too darling.





Lessons learned:
-For every decent shot, plan on taking at least 20 sub-par ones.
-Photoshop is your bff
-Flexibility is a close second
-They juuuust might not cooperate when the light is best
-But when you get bad skin tones, there's always a black/white option down the road
-Get them good & well fed before trying to take sleeping shots
-Have fun playing with different textured blankets/backgrounds
-Plan on this taking all afternoon

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


I really want to fast forward six weeks and hold our baby girl in my arms. And introduce her to Josh and her adoring fans (grandparents). And count her ten fingers and ten toes. And then bring her home and devote entire days to snuggling with her on the couch.

There have been some quick points in this pregnancy, but in general it's marched along at the pace of a Dostoyevsky novel.

On Monday we hit the six week mark.

Maybe it'll be only four? (A girl can hope!) Or maybe seven plus? (Noooooo!)

And maybe God's teaching me a little something about patience. And waiting on His timing.

This pregnancy has pretty much been a breeze, and I'm so very thankful for that. Heck, I'm so thrilled to be pregnant in the first place. It's been a tremendous blessing.

But right now? I'm ready to be done and meet this kid.

We're done with the nursery (pictures to come soon!). We have the equipment. The car seat has been successfully installed in the car. Itty bitty clothes are washed and in drawers and the hospital suitcase is mostly packed.

So, seasoned moms of the Internet, please give me your advice on what I should do for the next six weeks. How do we prepare our hearts for this child? What do you wish you'd have done pre-baby?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Baby Gifts

We've been spoiled. Blessed. And overwhelmed by all kinds of sweet, thoughtful presents.

A sincere thank you to all of our generous family and friends who have heaped baby gifts upon us. We feel humbled and honored.

Here's a glimpse into some of our growing stock of baby stuff. I love it all.

Hats. What's cuter than baby hats? Yup, nothing. The green one was made by my cousin Christina, and the white/pink/green one was made by my friend Kendra. Adorable.



Itty bitty baby clothes. She's got the beginnings of a great wardrobe!

For the baby of Lost fans. Thank you Martha!

Dog-related baby clothes for GIRLS are hard to find, so I was thrilled to receive this one!

DeeDee thought this outfit was "so me." I agree.

This little set was hand crocheted by Nugget's great great grandmother, "Grandma Wallace." This lady passed away at least 30 years ago, but Josh's mom saved this set for all those years, in the event that there would be a little girl in the family.


Another antique baby outfit, one that my Grandma bought for us. Love this one, too! Both will make for great pictures someday.


My friend Lora made this quilt for us and gave it to me at the shower she hosted. Lora helped me pick out the fabric I've been using for the nursery, and went back to the store and bought more of it to use for this. I love, love this quilt. The back side is flannel, which makes it especially cuddly.



Cloth diapers. These will be put to VERY good use!



A Moby Wrap. I'm excited to try this out... it seems like a very snuggly way to carry a baby. Any reader reviews? We also received an Ergo carrier for when she's bigger.

I'm totally intrigued by these DIY baby wipes, which my friend Erin gave to me. It's a simple recipe + half a roll of paper towel. What could be easier?

Thank you again, family and friends, for SUCH generous gifts. We so appreciate each one and feel so very loved by all of you!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Laundry Soap

Call me Suzy Homemaker.

Not only am I growing tomatoes and and doing all kinds of "sewing" projects, I've now made my own laundry soap.

I read about it at my friend Allison's blog. I'd heard about how great it was from friends. I figured it was worth a shot.

And I've been using it for a month+ and I like it.

It's pretty cheap, and extremely easy to make. Who knew? Josh ran the numbers on it for me, and I think we figured it was about 7 cents cheaper per load than Tide Free & Clear powder.
Numbered List
Overall I'm not too far into the "all organic, all natural, all green" thing, but I do appreciate that this soap is all of those things. And it didn't cost me a fortune at Whole Foods.

I bought the Castile Soap at Trader Joe's, and everything else was from Meijer. If you're not so lucky as to have a TJ's in town, I know it's available on Amazon. (What isn't available on Amazon?) And if you don't have Meijer either, I'm sure you can get everything else at Wal-Mart.

Here's the recipe:

Homemade Laundry Powder
(Makes approximately 5 cups)
2 cups (finely) grated castile soap (One bar was approx 2 cups when I grated it)
1 cup borax
1 cup baking soda
1 cup soda ash (washing soda)

Mix together and store in an airtight container. I use 1/8 cup per load.

Dr. Bronner's Castile soap comes in a variety of different scents, but I chose peppermint because that's all TJ's had to offer. I might try lavendar sometime, however.

The only real difference I've seen between this and the store-bought stuff we used to buy is stain fighting power. So I simply remember to pre-treat our stains with spray before they go into the machine. Not a big deal. And once I started doing that, everything has come out nicely.

Now, for those of you who are old pro's at this laundry soap making thing...

1. Is there any reason why I couldn't wash Nugget's clothes with this stuff? (Do I have to buy Dreft?)

2. Is there any reason why I couldn't wash Nugget's cloth diapers with this stuff? (We're going with bumGenius 4.0)

Belly shots, pre-twins

The day before the twins were born just happened to be the first Michigan football game of the season.

Josh went with his dad to the game, while I hung out with Chris, DeeDee, and Noah. They live super close to Ann Arbor, which is great.

And for the sake of posterity, we had to squeeze in one last bump photo shoot, maize and blue style.

DeeDee - 39 weeks
Me - 30 weeks

We were, of course, both wearing our husbands' shirts for the occasion. We don't let pregnancy get in the way of supporting our favorite football team!

For the sake of comparsion, here we are in early August:

DeeDee - 34 weeks
Me - 25 weeks

Monday, September 6, 2010

Twin Boys

DeeDee and Chris are some of our closest friends.

DeeDee was my college roommate for three years, and Chris was Josh's college roommate, too. Our rentals were 5 houses away from each other - it was very handy! And we've stayed close in the five + years (has it really been that long?) since graduation and our weddings. We've visited them in the Ann Arbor area, and they've come to see us, too - in Grand Rapids, Bloomington, and Columbus. DeeDee and I also took a trip to D.C. earlier this year.

Chris and DeeDee's first baby was born almost 2 years ago. He's a darling little red head.

And then this weekend, they had two more babies. TWO MORE!


And... um... wild horses couldn't keep me away from the hospital yesterday. And I couldn't help but take a million pictures.

We're so happy for our friends. Thankful that everyone's healthy and strong.

Here's Will:


And here's Drew:


They're so, so beautiful. Healthy. Darling. Sweet.


Praise the Lord.


And just a word to all three LeCompte boys from your good friends, the Browns. This will be very important for all of you to remember in the coming years:

Hands off our nugget.

Friday, September 3, 2010

In honor of college football beginning again...

Here's a recent craft project I've been working on:

With an early November anticipated arrival, we knew our nugget would need to be outfitted properly for a few late season games.

Josh's question: Why'd you choose light blue over dark blue? (Dark blue being more Michigan-esque)
My answer: Because I happened to have light blue on hand. :) Plus I think the pastel look is cute for an infant.

The shirt:

I ironed some fusible web (available at any craft store) onto a scrap of blue flannel. I drew a "block M" on the back side of the webbing, and cut out the logo. Then I ironed that right onto a simple onesie, and then used a needle and thread to add some flair around the edge. Super easy!

The pants:

Cheap, from Target. I sewed coordinating buttons onto them - just for fun.

The headband:

The white headband part was $.99 at Hobby Lobby. I just used felt, ribbon, a button, and some thread to fashion a bow. I glued to bow onto a little clip (also from the craft store) and attached it to the headband. Hopefully no one will mistake her as a boy in this get-up!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Witte Wedding

It was an outdoor wedding in West Michigan. In late August.

Can we say risky?

Had Josh and I chosen an outdoor venue for our big day (we had an early June West Michigan wedding), we would have had folks fainting from heat stroke and a much-too-toasty, overly quick reception. And my hair would have worked its way out of numerous bobby pins and formed a terrible curly disaster by the time we wrapped up.

But this wedding? It was THE perfect outdoor wedding. Complete with blue skies and a cool breeze. No rain in sight. No smothering midwestern heat.


And a beautiful, very-much-in-love couple, Christina & Tom.


They danced to The Luckiest by Ben Folds. I love that song.


A handsome groom and his gorgeous, radiant bride. I couldn't stop snapping pictures of them.




And of course, I do love wedding decor. They went with elegant and simple, and pulled it off beautifully.

Cakes as centerpieces (each made by my Aunt Phyllis, Christina's mom).


Lights and lanterns and paper balls made a plain white tent look charming and festive.


Especially after dark.


Natasha, Christina's older sister and maid of honor, toasted the couple. Natasha lived in the basement apartment of my parents' house for the last 5 years and only JUST moved out this past summer. I loved having her down there because I could go down and visit her when I was in town visiting my parents. A couple of weeks ago she started a new job - in Guatemala. I miss her! But what an incredible adventure.


Actually, Christina lived down there, too, for a couple of years. Way fun.

This is my cousin Michelle and her husband Rowley. They're expecting a baby girl, too! Exactly 2 months after our Nugget is due to be born. So exciting.


I caught a few water-glass-clinking-kisses from my seat at our table with my zoom lens.



My cousin Kim thought I was shooting her.


See all of these blondies? Aren't they cute? They're all children of my Witte cousins. And there are more blondies in this generation, too, but many are still little buggers and were left home with babysitters. I wonder if we'll have one to add to the mix.


The little girls stayed on the dance floor all night. It was awesome.

A beautiful summer evening. A blissfully happy bride and groom. Great wedding.