A strange phenomenon has hit me the past few weeks.

Nesting.

This isn’t the chicken-on-the-egg kind of nesting.
Oh no. This is the song-bird-flitting-around-nest-building-a-home.
Think robin, bluebird, chickadee.

One would think that perhaps nesting would be limited to the birds.
But perhaps the instinct is given to far more mothers preparing to give birth?

It’s the preparation of a Nest for a wee little one who doesn’t care for the world
how clean the house is, or if he has a drawer or a box or a cradle to sleep in.
The little one has no idea if the house was newly-housecleaned,
or if it has been years since a good cleaning.

However, the mama knows, and she wants her Nest ready and perfect for the precious little arrival. You’d think a good weekly cleaning would suffice.

But oh no.
This Nesting  is of a different sort.
Very strange things happen within the mother.
There are outrageous bursts of energy,
even as she carries a basketball-size tummy everywhere she goes.
Her eyes take on new lenses, and see things that need to be cleaned that she never even noticed before,
and that MUST BE SCRUBBED & CLEANED & SANITIZED. NOW.
She climbs atop of piano and balances on tall headbands,
trying to reach that last little inch of window trim.
She tries to step down safely, and most times does,
but sometimes the bench falls out from under her.
But she’s okay. She’s nesting.

She uses toothbrushes and bleach and cleans dirty corners that were never there before.
She could write a tutorial on how to make rabbits from dust bunnies
found underneath the master bed on the hardwood floor.
She hands rags and cleaning supplies to the other a-bit-bigger-birdies in the home
and they crawl under beds and in places where basketball-belly-mother cannot go,
and they think nesting is fun too.
It’s a very curious phenomenon.

She could write articles about deep cleaning and how to sanitize every inch of your home
and not miss a single dirty corner as she’s Nesting.
But she knows that within a month of the arrival of Wee Birdie
she would look back at the article and laugh,
because this is most definitely not normal, and quite clearly a perk of pregnancy.
And she enjoys the season of nesting and house-sanitizing because it is a season,
and feels quite sorry for those folks who live with these cleaning-lenses all the time.

And the clock ticks, and this nesting is a race against time.
But she takes time for naps if she’s tired, and trips to the park with the other little birdies.
And crosses things on her list of to-do’s for the Nest.
And prays to live these last days with Grace.
Not tenseness,
not being grouchy about being uncomfortable,
not being irritable if she goes overdue,
as she has with the other two birdies.
But with Sweet Grace.

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[spring mantel inspired by The Lettered Cottage]

For real, this Nesting thing is amazing even to me. How I can be at the very end and have the bodily shape I do and feel the uncontrollable urge to purge and clean and organize and sanitize…

I must look quite large at this point, and feel very conspicuous going out in public, even to Walmart. This was confirmed the other day when I was in [ha, the cleaning aisle of] Walmart, and a complete stranger [older male] passed me and said, “Hey! Didn’t anyone tell you not to swallow that watermelon seed? Ha ha ha!” Wow, Sir. Someone sure missed the tact end of things in your child-training. I smiled and nodded politely. He thought it was a great joke. It only confirmed my feeling that I should not be out in public.

Zoe is wild with excitement about a new little baby. Giving her the gift of siblings is ever so special to me. I’m so grateful to God for giving us that gift! She’s constantly saying, “I’m so excited about our baby coming I just can’t wait!!!”

[my new screen door off the kitchen, bought with
money saved from My Faire Lady. love love ♥]

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[Ballard Design Company, I love your style. And your coupon/discount email.]

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Ben and I were talking baby names the other night. I had ideas picked out last September already, but apparently we haven’t discussed as much as I thought. Two weeks before baby is due Ben says, “I remember the boy name we’re talking about, but, what’s the girl name?” Um, Husband! Am I really lacking in communication that badly?

Zoe has her own ideas of baby names. Very excitedly one day, “I know what we can name our baby!! If it’s a boy we can call him ‘Jack’ like ‘Jack and Jill went up the hill’! And if it’s a girl we can call her ‘Rose’ because no one else would think of that name!”

So it’s been baby Jack and baby Rose ever since then. I think Jack is really cute actually. :)

[front porch in lovely spring time]

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[confederate jasmine in all the sweet blooming glory]
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And it’s really amazing to me, but somehow my physical appearance and baby-belly is so lovely to Zoe. “We should always tell pregnant mommies that they’re sooo beautiful!” she said once, and she compliments often on how pretty she thinks I am. I asked Ben if he put her up to that :) and he said no. I was surprised, and her compliments mean all the more.
Olivia, on the other hand, says things as they really are: “You have a weally big belly, Mommy!!” :)

The excitement of meeting our new little one is sky-high.
The other two children it was just Ben and I that were excited.
This time it’s Ben and me plus two very excited sisters!
The suspense of not knowing the gender only adds to the excitement.
Zoe is declaring she wants eight children of her own, and that she wants five brothers and five sisters. :)

I actually get butterflies thinking about meeting this precious little baby, and finding out what it is!

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice? A trio of little girlie sweetness? Yes, please!

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Or Snakes & Snails & Puppy-Dog Tails? A little man in the house? Yes, please!

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Either one would not be a disappointment. God knows the perfect family arrangement for us.
It’s not like any other family in the world ~ it’s unique to us. And we can’t wait to find out!
It’s FOUR DAYS until my due date. Tuesday, April 24th.
Which, so beautifully, is the very day that Ben and I started dating, in 2004! No, we didn’t plan this. :)

But my record is to go late, soooo I’m planning a beach day in celebration of my due date. :) Just to make things enjoyable and not focus on the date itself. My theory is, with a record of 11 days late and 8 days late respectively, that if I do enjoyable things before and after my due date, I don’t notice the discomfort of late-term pregnancy as keenly. And it makes me look forward to the days ahead, rather than dread them. However, I do hope very much I don’t go the full two weeks overdue that my midwives allow…
But Sweet Baby Love, if you do decide to come early, or on time, or late, know that we are so ready for you, and so excited to meet you.
And there is a sweet little antique cradle waiting for you right beside our bed…

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…with dear little organic bedding from Pottery Barn, found on clearance for a song…

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…where you can be rocked by eager little sisters…

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…and where you’ll sleep, when you’re not being held and cuddled and kissed upon…
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Dear Lovie, you are already so loved.

~ clarita

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