Welcome, Marlowe Marie

Baby Marley & Sisters | PepperDesignBlog.com

Guys, somehow my post on Wednesday motivated this baby to action.

We welcomed a beautiful baby girl at 12:51 am on Thursday, January 15, just one hour after her due date.

Baby Marley & Sisters | PepperDesignBlog.com

Baby Marley & Sisters | PepperDesignBlog.com

Baby Marley & Sisters | PepperDesignBlog.com

Her full name is Marlowe Marie, we’re planning on calling her Marley for short. Be back soon with more photos and more of this sweet girl’s story.

Today’s the Day… Maybe

Today's the Day - A Due Date Note | PepperDesignBlog.com

Today is my official due date (though I don’t think anyone told the baby, so I’m not planning on a hospital visit at this moment) and it feels a little surreal to have reached 40 weeks. It’s sort of like I’ve crossed the finish line – I’ve made it. I semi-packed my hospital bag last night, I washed a few sets of onesies for a baby boy and a baby girl this weekend, I folded swaddle blankets and burp cloths and put them on our… counter. Where am I going to put everything for this new baby? Have no idea yet. I’ve cleaned out a half drawer in the girls’ room but am really planning on purging during maternity leave.

It’s amazing how different a pregnancy is the third time around (don’t tell this little one that I had picked out a special handmade Etsy outfit ready for Liv when she was born and knit a baby blanket just in time for Taylor). I have yet to purchase a single item for this third baby OR make anything myself. Terrible mom. Actually, I take that back – I did get a buy a new car seat on Amazon.

Feeling: more random contractions than I remember with the first two.

Wondering: if this baby will be a little Liv (me), a little T (Kevin) or a combination of the two?

Preparing: for nursing (!) the first few days – and more – are always hard.

Grateful: that I’m not anxious or nervous about birth or the busyness of third baby joining our family.

Praying for: sanity.

So ready for: a hot bath (that’s a right now request), my sense of balance, the smell of a newborn baby.

Today's the Day - A Due Date Note | PepperDesignBlog.com

PS a maternity capsule wardrobe, a homemade lotion for the stretching belly and happy thoughts for all of you other expecting (or trying to become expecting) mothers out there.

Handmade Gift: Photo Tea Tags

Handmade Gift: Photo Tea Tag | PepperDesignBlog.com

One of the handmade gifts that Liv and I made for her Mimi this year was a set of personalized tea bags. By customizing the tea tags, we created unique little love notes for my mother-in-law from the girls. Simple black and white photos become a sweet reminder of grandchildren while enjoying a morning cup of tea – one of her favorite things!

Handmade Gift: Photo Tea Tag | PepperDesignBlog.com

To create, I simply glued a printed & folded photo over the existing tag. You could also customize with a kid’s drawing (cutting up a preschool watercolor would be really pretty), a typed quote, even a handwritten note.

I pasted eight of my favorite photos on an 8.5×11 page in photoshop and sized them to match. Then I used the Magnolia action (from A Beautiful Mess’ mini collection) at about 50% or so to create the black and white images you see below. I printed them on a thick matte cardstock (choosing a 20-80# weight or even watercolor paper gives a heavier, more professional feel to the tag) and cut each tag out so that the final result could be folded in half to show the image on one side and a white backing on the other.

I love these photos! Part of the reason my Everyday Stuff project is awesome is that it helps me tag and archive favorites as I import them from my camera card.

Handmade Gift: Photo Tea Tag | PepperDesignBlog.com

For the tea, I chose my FAVORITE Winter Dream from Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf. Have you tried it? Died and gone to heaven. Also amazing as a tea latte from the store itself.

Handmade Gift: Photo Tea Tag | PepperDesignBlog.com

If you wanted to get a little fancy, you could put together an adorable tea kit that includes a chalkboard mug (another option), honey sticks, sugar cubes, cookies or even a set of tea towels. Is it too early to start planning for Valentine’s Day?

More favorite handmade gift ideas including an entirely different way to use paper tea bags. If you’re more of a coffee lover (high five), customize a bag of your favorite roast and gift it with chocolate spoons. Mmmmmm.

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