Tuesday, December 31, 2013

5 Months Old- Happy New Year!

     Woah. Lucy is FIVE months old today! Time is going by way too quickly. I am often sad when I think of how quickly she is growing. Of course I love that she's developing and growing as a healthy little one should but I'm still sad to see the itty bitty days behind us.
     So much has been going on since the last update I was able to do. We've celebrated her first Thanksgiving, First Christmas and now we are celebrating her first New Year! She's growing by the second and weighs in at 15lbs now. She's very tall for her age too, tall and skinny like her daddy. She's rolling over from her back to to her tummy, and grabbing objects when they are in front of her. Her favorite thing to do though is smile and giggle! As long as I am holding her that is. If anybody else tries to hold her...well...it usually doesn't go over well with her.
     She is a velcro baby to the extreme. I never thought I would end up as an "attatchement parent" persay but I'm somehow found myself sleeping with a Lucy snuggled up next to me in bed and hardly ever putting her down during the day. If I dare set her down I had better be prepared to hear screaming until I pick her back up. I know she will eventually grow out of this (I hope) but it can be frustrating. The hardest part is not giving Roxas all the attention I know he needs. Sometimes I just have to make Lucy bite the bullet and spend a little time in a bouncer or swing or crib while I take care of Roxas or do the dishes or laundry or you know...shower once every few weeks. Seriously...I think I set a record this year.
     I love her to bits though and even when she's on my very last nerve, and the dishes in the sink are giving me anxiety. Roxas has been such a trooper with her. He's very understanding of when I can't just hop up and fill his snack cup because Lucy isn't done eating. I still hate to have to put his wants and needs below Lucy's though.
     Roxas is just becoming such a little man now too. Oh my goodness. He talks NON-STOP! He has his own little language and we've been able to decipher several words. So far he says "bop-bop for grandpa, horsey, fishey, kitty, Lucy (or sissy), grandma, GG (great grandma), fry, no, open (but it's said Oh-na), more, off, on, and the best one so far is his first curse word. It starts with a "D" and ends with "it". I have to take credit on that one. I really don't curse a whole lot but I have to own up to using that word quite a bit. If I drop something, hit my toe, or otherwise get frustrated that's typically the first word out of my mouth. I'm much more careful about what I say now.
     Anyways our little family has changed so much in this past year and as we sit here ready to ring in the new year I've thought back over all that has happened and I'm excited to start this new year. This past year I finished my second semester of nursing school with an "A" and we welcomed our second (EEP!) baby into the world. I lost a dear loved one, my second mom Sherry, but was blessed with a new little nephew Coltin. This past year has been full of ups and downs but thanks to my amazing family, friends and classmates I've made it through without too many nervous breakdowns. The year to come will be full of challenges, especially financially, but we will make it work somehow...we always do. Plus in December of 2014 I will be graduating nursing school! I can't wait for that day, but knowing the next semester is looming over my head has been stressing me out quite a lot.

    With 2014 nearly here I want to wish everybody a happy and wonderful new year. May it be blessed beyond your wildest dreams!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Trying To Go Green: Kushy Tooshy Cloth Diaper Review & Giveaway 3 winners!

Trying To Go Green: Kushy Tooshy Cloth Diaper Review & Giveaway 3 winners!

It's been awhile

Hello old friends.

I began writing this post back in the beginning of December and well now it's almost Christmas! I have been so busy just being wrapped up in life anymore I rarely get the chance to sit and type out my thoughts anymore. I'm actually doing this on my phone now. So I apologize for any odd typos that I miss.

Since my last update Lucy celebrated her first Thanksgiving which was great. Just thinking about how last year we were sharing the big news that she was on her way boggles my mind. These kiddos are growing up so fast. Lucy is almost 5 no the old and Roxas is a few months away from turning 2. Where did all that time go?!

Lucy is growing by the minute. At her 4 month check up her height was right off the chart and she weighed 15 pounds! Roxas is a little tank. Seriously, he's solid boy.

He's picking up all kinds of new words and learning all kinds of new thing's. He amazes me on a daily basis. Although he is at that stage where he will mimic anything and everything I do so I have to be very conscious of what I'm doing. He is an amazing big brother to Lucy and it always making sure she is happy. He is definitely becoming a little toddler though. Oh boy, the fits he can throw and the things that upset him are amazing. He will get mad and frustrated so easily. I feel for him because I know he just can't even process things right now but it's still unbelievably annoying when he throws a toy at me or throws himself on the ground in the store.

Lucy is one high maintenance diva. She really doesn't like anybody but me holding her and she really really doesn't like being set down. So I get hardly anything done simply because I can't put her down unless I want to hear her scream endlessly. Sometimes it is a necessary evil to get stuff accomplished but foe the most part she spends her days in my arms. She still nurses about every 2 hours and isn't a huge fan of sleep. I typically go to bed around 3am and get up around 8 now.

She is such a puzzling baby. I kind of feel like a new mom all over again because we never dealt with these things with Roxas. Roxas responded well to crying it out, which for the record I won't so until at least 6 months, but Lucy will scream for an hour or more. Yes I have tested the theory because I had to hear her scream the entire drive back from the hualapai mountains. She doesn't stop. Plus I don't really like it, it just doesn't feel right for her, it felt ok with Roxas but not with Lucy. She is also very adverse to sleeping anywhere but in my arms. She is actually asleep in my arms after nursing right now. I've broken down several times and just let her sleep in the bed next to me. She sleeps wonderfully when I let her do that. I never thought I would be a bed sharing mommy but I needed the sleep, bad.

She is a demanding baby and wants what she wants or else. It can push ny nerves to the limit sometimes but she is so darn cute it makes up for it all.

So we are coming up on Christmas and it doesn't even feel like it for me. I'm so stressed out about the upcoming semester of school it has just sucked the fun right out of it. We have chosen not to do Santa either so that little bit of magic is missing for me. I'm sure it will be lots of fun but right now I'm just dreading it more than looking forward to it. On top of it all I'm coming down with yet another cold. Hopefully it will move on by Christmas.

Well that's mostly it for now. Hopefully I won't take so long to write a new update.

Until next time....

Friday, December 6, 2013

The Good Husband (and dad)

It's been a busy few days but I'm finally getting around to the part 2 of my previous post. Yeah dads you're not getting off the hook either!

So you liked this girl, you courted her, married her and now you helped make her a mother. She's been your crush, your girlfriend, and your wife but now she is not only your wife but the mother of your children. You have wandered into uncharted territory. You're a new dad.

Even if this isn't your first baby it never hurts to be reminded how to help be the best husband you can be to your wife as you both take on parenthood and navigate its murky waters without being eaten by an alligator.

1. Don't try to understand.
You have never experienced the wrath of estrogen and progesterone, well not first hand anyways. If you have, well you may need to be checked by a doctor. These two hormones go nuts after a baby, they have some friends like oxytocin that mix it up too, oh and the sleep deprivation doesn't help. Don't try to wrap your head around why she is crying because you bought the wrong paper towels. Just accept it for what it is: she's feeling upset. She probably doesn't even know why she feels certain ways. Instead of trying to understand, work on finding out what can help, if anything. Whether that's a hug, a pint of ice cream, or the right kind of paper towels. Don't worry, the hormones will settle down and you'll have your wife back soon. Please, if you think your wife has more than a little baby blues call a doctor right away. Excessive sadness is not normal.

2. Offer help.
She's probably exhausted, frazzled and overwhelmed. Offer to help, or better yet just jump in. Dishes in the sink? Wash' em! Layers of dust on the mantle? Get the pledge! Has she been eating and drinking enough? Offer to make lunch or bring her a glass of water. Remember she just grew a human being and birthed it and now she is trying to recover. It's very traumatic and caring for a newborn on top of it is just flat out crazy. No, you don't have to feed her grapes and fan her with palm fronds but just be aware. She needs help and probably (if she's like me) won't ever ask. You're part of a team now.

3. Encourage her.
You are your wife's biggest cheerleader. Encourage her and remind her she is doing a great job. I know many new mothers feel like they are falling flat on their face. She is probably questioning every single thing she is doing. There is insane pressure on her and she needs to know you think she's doing great. To just hear "you're a great mom" or "you're doing really great with this mom thing." can make her day and give that vital boost of confidence. I know you probably don't realize it but she needs that encouragement.

4. See her as a wife again
Sure she might be wearing a pair of stained yoga pants, a shirt adorned with spit up and possibly unshowered, but she's still your wife. Remind her you love her. Whether it's asking her on a date or just telling her she looks pretty. Remind her she still has a husband who sees a wife not just a mom. Remember how you tried so hard to woo her when you were dating? Do that again. Make her feel loved for being her, not necessarily because she is a mom.

5. Take an interest in the baby
You would think this is pretty self explanatory but I've talked to a lot of friends who say they wish their husbands were more involved with the new baby. I know you probably feel like you are kind of useless. That mom is all baby wants and needs. Nope. Get in there! Rock the baby, feed the baby, read to the baby, change the baby, bathe the baby, change the baby. Seeing you interact and love on your new babe will no doubt make her heart swell with love for both of you. Thanks oxytocin!

So, having a new mom as a wife can be hard. It can be a challenge to figure out what exactly your role is as husband/new dad. Don't worry and just go with the flow. Use your instincts and everything will be fine. Remember why you fell in love in the first place and repeat it to yourself every day.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Good Wife (and Mom)

Whether you're a new mom with your first baby or a new mom with your fourth baby, the effect of motherhood on your life is just as great. Becoming a mom changes you in so many ways and its easy to become kind of consumed in this new role you have. After all, you are now responsible for keeping a small human alive! However, while we are being sucked into a new world of breast pads, swaddling, and diaper changing we tend to forget our other role...wife. I know for myself I've let that role slip away from me. It's so easy to immerse yourself in this world of mommyhood and unintentionally leave your hubby out of it. So here are some of my biggest pieces of advice to moms about remembering your other title too.

1) Remember, he's a guy. They are totally wired differently than girls. He truly cannot understand what raging hormones feel like and any new mother knows hormones after a baby, well, it's not exactly pretty. You might find yourself sobbing one minute and furious the next. Try not to get mad when your hubby just can't understand why you can't just snap out of it. He literally cannot comprehend how you feel. Its not his fault, it's estrogen and it's best buddy progesterone you're really mad at. He hasn't had the same experience as you so of course he can't understand how you feel. Don't fault him for that though. Try to be patient with him. If you find yourself sad all the time or have harmful thoughts though please, please, speak to your doctor.

2) Remember he exists. It is super easy to focus only on your baby and push your husband to the back burner but remember he's there. Take time to talk with him, show an interest in his day. Just enjoy his company. Try to carve out a little bit of time each week to go on a date. Remember how you tried so hard to impress him when you were dating? Find that girl again! Put on some nice clothes, and I don't mean the yoga pants without holes, throw on a dash of make up and try to woo him once again. Just a small effort to make him feel as if he is also important goes a long way. Something as small as leaving a sweet note shows him you're still thinking of him.

3) Understand he is tired too. Oh boy I'm guilty as all get out here. When he gets home, every fiber in my being wants to say "here honey, take the kids!" What I forget is he has just worked 11 hours, is exhausted, and now I'm dumping two kids on him. So, next time he comes home try to give him 20 or 30 minutes to adjust to home. Let him get changed, take his shoes off, sit down for a few minutes. Then ask him to take kid duty for awhile. That little window of decompression can be a total game changer.

4) Speak the same language. One of my favorite books is called the five love languages. In it you learn there are different ways people show love. Kenny and I speak different languages and I've had to learn what "I love you" sounds like in his language. Imagine if I spoke Chinese and he spoke German. He could tell me all day long he loves me and I wouldn't get it and visa versa. So take the time to understand what language you're speaking and make an effort to speak their language. It will make a huge difference in your new, crazy, busy lives if you're speaking a language your partner can understand.

5) Last One, and possibly a little awkward here. Remember to be a lover. God gave us a beautiful gift in marriage: a physical and emotional bond that is beyond comparison. It is so easy to slip into the mom persona of being unsexy, or unattractive. I know when you look in the mirror you probably instantly see the stretch marks, the loose skin, those last few stubborn baby pounds (or is that just me?); but when he looks at you...he sees a beautiful woman. Guys are different. They don't see the same flaws we do. Often times I find I am my worst critic. I see things I hate about my body but my husband sees his wife. He sees me as beautiful even when I don't. I can't wrap my head around how that's possible, but I am learning to just trust that's truly how he feels. Probably the number one reason I see for women not wanting to be intimate after a baby is feeling insecure. So try to forget what you see through your eyes and imagine yourself as your husband sees you. You're still beautiful, still sexy and still everything he needs. And he does need you, because remember...he's a guy.

Women are remarkably versatile. We can seemingly do anything. We wear many hats and take on anything. It's fantastic but we have to remember just because we now wear the mom hat, or mom jeans, doesn't mean we can't wear the wife hat anymore.

I am going to also write a flip side to this post (hopefully) tomorrow for the guys on how to be a great hubby after baby. Hope you enjoyed my rambling thoughts from 3am. Until next time.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Learning Curve

So it's been one week since I drank the kool-aid and joined my brothers crossfit gym (Havasu Crossfit). I absolutely love it. I love the challenge both mental and physical. I love the high that comes from exercise and I love that I'm making my body healthier and stronger.

The unique thing about crossfit is the challenge it issues. Physically it is demanding, and you challenge your body to work like it has never worked before. Its tough but after your done you feel so good...and sore but it's a good sore. Mentally it will push you to your limits and make you explore parts of your mind you've never been in.

For me the challenge to do better, and achieve more keeps me coming back for more and more. Physically I'm not in that great of shape. I never really exercised. Like EVER. So I'm starting out with a pretty weak body but that just means I have a ton of room for improvement right? Actually before my first workout I thought I wasn't too terribly out of shape. I was wrong, very, very wrong. It kicked my butt and knocked my ego down a few levels. Of course that just makes me want to work even harder.

Mentally I've been challenged to push past the idea of "I can't"  and keep going. My ego has been good and properly deflated but that's a good thing. Realizing where you really are is crucial.

Last night was tough for me. Coming off the heels of what I thought was a less than stellar workout the previous night I came in with huge determination. The workout involved lunges and ring dips (mine were modified but they still suck) and at first I thought I was going to crush it. I was going to own that WOD. Oh boy was I wrong. Almost halfway through my legs started to shake but I pushed and kept going. Shortly after the shaking started my muscles couldn't take it anymore. They were shaking and cramping so badly I couldn't stand on them. They just wouldn't support my body. I had to stop. I hated stopping. I wanted to push through and get up but when I did I just fell over like a baby calf. I was furious with myself. I was angry my body wouldn't behave the way I wanted. It's good that my brother made me stop or I probably would have really hurt myself.

I realized something today though. Yesterday I did the worst thing I could have done...I drank very little water and I had two diet Dr. peppers. I sabotaged my own body. I paid for it dearly.

It is all a learning curve. Learning what your body can safely be pushed to, and learning how to give your body the best possible chance at success.

We have been doing much better about eating. Not perfect but for once our fridge is full of meats, fruits and veggies instead of our freezer being full of frozen meals, and a pantry stuffed with boxed processed food. There are still some junky things like pasta (I don't think I can ever cut out pasta) and some jarred things like sauces, but hey...baby steps right?

Last night really made me realize I can't be the diet soda drinking, junk food junkie I am and expect my body to do what I push it to do. It will give out. Like a car with sugar in its gas tank.

So for only having one week under my belt I have learned so much and can't wait to get back out there and do better. I do have a new rule: no more soda on workout days, and no more than 2 on rest days. I want to work on making it none but for now it's an improvement.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Getting Healthy- The Crossfit Bug

Little disclaimer: I posted this from my phone so I apologize if I miss any typos.

So tonight I had a crazy experience. I did my first crossfit workout. My oldest brother started our local crossfit gym and its exploded in this town. This was 2 years ago. Now normally I'm all about the not exercising thing. My favorite joke was that I was allergic to exercise. It made me all sweaty and out of breath. After going to the sic fit competition a few weeks ago and seeing the crossfit family competing I realized I wanted that. I wanted to look in the mirror and be really happy with what I saw, not just ok. I wanted to push myself and challenge myself. So I finally did it. I went and joined my brother's crazy cult. I love it.

We had an orientation tonight and although I'm horrendously unbalanced and can't do a proper squat without help my brothers were great at right away making sure I was being safe but still working my butt off. Literally. Kenny even joined with me! It was a lot of fun getting to do this as a couple and I'm proud of his accomplishments just in tonight's work out. We did one workout and even though it lasted less than 8 minutes...I was pretty sure I was going to die. At the very least I was sure I would throw up. Later, when I got home though I felt great, almost like being high. All those endorphins had really kicked in. It was awesome and I can't wait to torture myself some more.

    I'm really wanting to finally get our family healthy. My brother nailed it tonight when he said it was about improving your quality of life. I'm young now but I will someday get old and I know that by building the best foundation I can now I will have a much easier time in old age. I want to be that crazy grandma who is running marathons with her kids. I don't want to idly sit by and watch my body breakdown. So that's why I'm trying to change our lives. I'm starting to actually cook meals, like...nothing coming from a prepackaged mix or box. Thanks to bountiful baskets I'm able to incorporate so much more fruits and veggies into our meals without spending a small fortune. Now all I have to do is buy meat and dairy and voila, food! I used to think eating healthy was too expensive for us but as long as I'm careful and shop good sales...it's proving to be cheaper! Imagine that.

I'm very excited about all these new changes we are making as a family. I can't wait to see the results from it.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

3 Months: Time Sure Does Fly

     Holy cow. It's already time to do another month update. I just can't fathom how fast time is going by. I find myself already longing for those first few weeks when Lucy was still an itty bitty newborn. I'm crazy I know. She is growing so fast and I wish she would stop! Of course I want her to grow and turn into a wonderful young lady but it's a bittersweet thing every time she masters some new skill. Now she is 15.6lbs and 24in long! She's growing like a little weed.
     She has been getting better at her coordination, and is almost able to intentionally grab her toys. She has gotten SO close to rolling over, I'm sure it will be any day now. She can get onto her side pretty well but not quite all the way over yet.
     With Roxas I was so anxious for him to hit every milestone and I obsessed over whether he was on track. With Lucy I am the complete opposite. I really don't keep track of what milestones she is "supposed" to be reaching or anything and I'm much happier for it.
     Despite my best efforts to make sure I do everything the same for Lucy as I did with Roxas there are still things I've ended up not doing or changing how I do them. I'm glad I have left some things behind, like doing the cute little blocks for the monthly pictures which were a real pain to deal with. I'm also glad I have kept up with other traditions like taking a few minutes of video each month with just Lucy. I watched the video of Roxas's first year the other day and I am SO happy that I did this and I'm continuing to do it for Lucy.
     Today is Halloween, Lucy's first, and of course we had to do some of the obligatory fall/halloween pictures. Lucy was great for most of it, Roxas however was a real pill. I would have had better luck convincing a donkey to sit by the pumpkins and smile. I got a few shots of him but nothing like what I wanted. That's just how he is though, unbelievably independent and if he doesn't want to do it...he won't.

 He's a total crack up though. I was asking him to please come sit and he just kept saying "no!" That's his new favorite word. At first I don't think he realized what it meant but now he totally does. He says other words but not with any regular use. Sometimes we will get a "doggie" or "Grandma! Grandpa!" out of him but for now he still babbles on in his own little language. He's just a little ball of energy constantly on the go. He's a little sponge too. I see him do all kinds of things that mimic something he saw me do. Which means I have to be REALLY careful what I do around him or he might start doing the same thing. One bad habit he picked up was my tendency to open things with my teeth. Bad, I know! He's a phenomenal big brother and really just loves his little sister. I know he will be the best protector for her. If she's crying he does whatever he can to make it better. Lucy loves him too. If he's around she looks and him and just follows him, watching every move he makes. She usually has a big gummy smile for him too.

     He got a "big boy" haircut and loves to rock a "faux-hawk". He's turning into such a little boy full of mischief and wonder. I love being able to watch him learn and grow every single day. He has a super fun sense of humor and makes me crack up laughing all the time with his antics.

She's a bit of a ham too! No piggy pun intended. Lucy is one of the most smiley little things I've known. She's gotten much better about sleeping, I usually get a good 4 or 5 hours uninterrupted sleep now, which is fantastic. Overall she's a really happy baby, although she still wants to be help or nurse just about every second of every day. She's my snuggly girl and I love it.

     A few weeks ago we got to go to Phoenix and watch my big brothers compete in a SicFit competition. My oldest brother owns Havasu CrossFit and my other big bro is also a crossfit trainer. It was AWESOME seeing both of my brothers compete and has inspired me to join crossfit and try to get myself in good enough shape to maybe someday compete with them. I can dream.
     While we were in Phoenix we went to the zoo and had a blast seeing all the animals! Roxas loved looking at all the neat critters and learned that snakes say SSSSSSSssssss! He was too cute. Lucy slept most of the time in her carrier, but she had fun too.

     So life with the two is pretty hectic but I finally feel like I'm getting back to something of a new normal. I have had days where I wonder what on Earth was I thinking wanting two kids. It can be really overwhelming and frustrating at times when both of them are cranky and I can't seem to make either of them happy. Dealing with a hungry, screaming baby while your toddler has a temper tantrum can really work on your last nerve. I've almost lost my head a few times but a quick chill out on the patio does wonders. Just five minutes of fresh air can totally rearrange my mood. It's all worth it on the good days though. When Roxas climbs into my lap and snuggles or Lucy falls asleep on my chest. It's all worth it.

     We will be going out trick or treating at the nursing homes in town today and I'm really excited for how much fun it will be. I know both the kids and the elderly people will just love it. After doing my rotation in the nursing home it's heartbreaking how many people there have nobody and just seeing a little one can completely light up their faces. It's a great thing for everybody. I will try to put up a post soon with pictures from our adventures tonight but no promises. Finding time to sit at my laptop with no interruptions is almost impossible. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

Celebrating an Angel Today

     Today was a day I had never thought about, a day I thought surely would be far away. Today at noon we gathered to celebrate the life of my second mom, Sherry. She took her spot in Heaven last week after deciding to stop the treatments for the cervical cancer she courageously battled for the past three years.

     When I first became friends with Tashia I think she actually warned me how goofy her parents could be. She was right. I loved Sherry's sense of humor. She would always have something to laugh about and could make a joke out of just about anything. Hanging around Tashia's house was never dull for sure. I will miss her jokes and laughter. Awhile ago I was talking to Tashia and she told me they were out picking wigs for mom. I jokingly told her to get a hot pink one...and Tashia told me mom had already tried that one on. Of course Sherry tried on the hot pink wig, I would expect nothing less. That kind of thing was always happening, she was just a naturally fun person to be around.
     Sherry was also incredibly kind. The picture above is from the day she brought my first horse, Annabelle, to me. I was absolutely overjoyed. Ever since I was a little girl I wanted a horse and after saving my money and working out all the details for her care I finally had my horse. I love that horse, and it pains me that she is no longer my own but I do still visit her from time to time. I wasn't the only one overjoyed, I could tell Sherry was happy that she was making a dream come true for me.
     Sherry treated me like one of her own, I would show up at random to the house to hang out and she never seemed annoyed to have an extra teenage girl in the house being all teenage-ery. Some of my favorite days were when Tashia and I would spend the weekends riding, eating and hanging around watching country music videos. Of course the videos all came with commentary from Sherry. She's the first person who ever told me I look like Leanne Rhymes too, I'm pretty sure she was just being nice.
     I remember in particular one evening I was hanging around with Tashia, and Sherry dragged us outside to watch the sunset from the front porch. Of course being the obnoxious teenage girls we were...well we didn't really care too much at the time. Hey, teenagers...whatta ya gonna do right? Anyways, she dragged our butts outside and said "Look at the sun set, it's almost gone!" and as the sun dropped below the purple mountains she said, "Plop! There is goes! Isn't it purty?" There is a good chance one of us rolled our eyes and giggled. My memory is a bit fuzzy but I remember really clearly what Sherry said. Now that I'm a little older and hopefully wiser I realize this trait of Sherry's was one of the best. She noticed the little and often beautiful moments in life when few others took the time to notice. Something as little as a pretty sunset was worth admiring to her. Others might just shrug and go "yeah...it's a sunset, whoop-dee-doo" but Sherry saw the uniqueness, and the beauty of it. That. That is an amazing thing.
     I will miss Sherry so much and my heart just breaks for my "other" dad and I hope to see his goofy grin once again someday. It kills me that my best friend who I consider a sister and who has been there through some of the toughest years in my life has to know this heartbreaking pain of losing your mom.  I know I miss Sherry but her family misses her even more than I do, it's hard to imagine that kind of hurt. Yet I know we all celebrate and rejoice that she has gone home, her body restored beyond perfection and she is dancing (most likely in the dorkiest way possible) in Heaven with God.

Mom, I miss you. I love you. I will see you again someday when us girls can all go riding together on streets paved with gold. 

Rest in Peace.

Help Sherry's Family
If you can spare even a few dollars I ask that you click the link above and donate to help the family cover the funeral expenses. With all the hurt of losing Sherry I pray they do not have to worry about money right now. 

Monday, September 30, 2013

2 Months Old!

     Wow. I say that a lot. Just wow. Two months have flown past and Lucy is getting so big now. She weighs 14lbs and is 23in tall! I'm amazed at how quickly she has grown. She is starting to try and reach for things now, although she still can't get those darn arms to do her bidding so she just flails around a lot. She smiles and coos all the time. Overall she is a pretty happy baby during the day. Just right about 7pm she starts getting fussy and I'm still up with her until 2 or 3am most nights. I got spoiled and went to bed at 1:30am last night! It was great.

     With Roxas I found myself eagerly awaiting each milestone but with Lucy I feel conflicted. I want her to be healthy and meet her milestones but then that means she is growing up and I want her to stay my itty bitty babe for a little longer. It's the parental paradox.

     We went and saw the ENT doctor in Bullhead just after she turned one month old and he was fantastic. I explained the problems we were having and he simply said "well the proof is in the pudding. If it's causing you trouble we will just fix it now" Hallelujah, a doctor who actually listened. The doctor numbed up her mouth a little and snipped the piece of tissue and it was all over in about 10 seconds. She hated being held down the most. The very first time I fed her after the procedure I noticed a HUGE difference. Now I have absolutely zero pain with nursing and she seems so much happier and less frustrated. We go see the pediatrician tomorrow so I'm excited to tell her how much better things are and obviously she is growing like a little weed!
 This was her tongue after the procedure

     Everybody told me having two kids was super easy, you hardly notice. I call baloney. I've noticed. Lucy is a "Spitter-Upper" so my laundry load has increased at least three times over now. With Roxas going out and about was harder but much more manageable than two. Now if I want to go out somewhere I have to REALLY want to go out. All in all it is much harder but still not as bad as I thought it would be. I had kind of a doom and gloom perspective on it before. Roxas is still doing great as a big brother. He is being a great kid, although he does throw some impressive toddler tantrums every day. Usually over the silliest things, but that's life with a toddler.

     We had a big first this past month, I ran (well... walked) my first 5k. I finished it just under an hour which for me wasn't too shabby. I pushed both Roxas and Lucy in the double stroller through the whole course. It was a color run so it was meant to be just relaxed and fun which it absolutely was. Roxas had a BLAST with the color powder at the end and Lucy slept the entire time. I've never been one for running, even though I ran track for several years in school. I'm starting to get back into it with the inspiration of a few friends who have totally kicked but at it lately. My goal is to run in the Disneyland 5k next year!

     We finally got to meet my best friend, Tashia's, baby boy, Coltin, this past week. Unfortunately it was not under the circumstances I ever wanted to meet him. Tashia's mom, Sherry, passed away on Wednesday morning. My mom and I were on our way up to see her after learning she decided to stop fighting the cervical cancer she had battled for the past 3 years. She was a strong, loving, passionate, hilarious person and I will miss her to no end. She was like a second mom to me and treated me just like another one of her kids. Her passing has placed a huge financial burden on the family, if you scroll down to the bottom of this page you will find a link to a GoFundMe site for "Cure Sherry". If you can donate any amount of money, or even just a prayer please click on the link.
Coltin at 2 weeks old and Lucy at 8 weeks old

     So much has changed in the past month and I know with the holidays coming up it will only move faster. I'm excited for all the fun things the fall and winter seasons bring, especially the cooler weather. I've planned some fun stuff for us to do and I'm excited to make new family memories together and really enjoy this limited time while the kids are still little kids, and not surly teenagers who are begging us for cell phones!

Until Next Time...

 Lucy and Roxas visiting Grandpa Wally for his birthday.

 Definitely our little blessing!


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Happy Half-Birthday!

     My baby boy turned 18 months old on the 5th of this month. We are halfway to celebrating yet another birthday. Where on Earth did the time go? He is getting so big and learning so much each day. He has a huge personality and is always doing something crazy that makes us all crack up. He's the highlight of my day.

     We had his 18 month check up last week and he is healthy as can be. A whole whopping 30lbs and he is 35 inches tall! Thank goodness he walks pretty darn well because hauling around his solid 30lbs gets really tiring really quickly. He has almost all of his baby teeth, all we are waiting on now is one canine tooth and then his 2yr molars. He is also beginning to tell us when he needs to be changed which makes me think we will be starting potty training in the not so distant future. I'm looking forward to no more diapers but I'm not really looking forward to the process of achieving that!

     He is a typical little boy who loves to run around, jump off of things, and just generally act like a crazy jungle boy at times. He likes to take pillows off our couch and then body slam them on the floor. He's always doing something too, never sitting still. One of his favorite games is playing tag. We will chase him all over the house as he just squeals with laughter.

      He is the best big brother around and so far we really haven't noticed much jealousy at all with Lucy. He is always eager to bring her a blankie or diaper. At the moment he is "helping" bounce her in the bouncy seat. I love watching him interact with her and I can't wait until she is old enough to really play with him. My favorite thing he will do is give her a kiss, it's just about the sweetest thing on the planet. Of course then he must give everybody withing a one mile radius a kiss too, including the dog.

     We are working on trying to teach him some things but truthfully he is much more interested in playing with his toys and running around to really get anywhere. I try to read him books but most of the time he isn't very interested. I am planning on taking him to a local story time tomorrow and my hope is that he will learn to love books like his mommy. I think it's a boy thing.

      He can point to most of his body parts, and he can identify some people like Lucy, mommy, daddy and grandparents. He doesn't have too many words and they aren't really words persay. He says mamma and dadda pretty well, and sometimes he will say grandma or grandpa pretty clearly but it's mostly just babbling in his own little language with sounds that might resemble words but I'm not entirely sure what he is trying to say. I wish I knew what he was saying.

     He is incredibly inquisitive. I swear you can just see the gears turning in his head while he tries to figure out how something works. It's incredible to see him learning right in front of my eyes. He will investigate just about anything he can and figure out how it works.

     Sometimes it is a bit hectic around here just trying to balance the needs of both kids and I'm thankful Roxas is great at understanding I can't always get down and play with him. 
      Last night, or early this morning depending on how you want to look at it, I was sitting in bed looking at a sleeping Lucy in my arms and I had this overwhelming feeling of joy. It's a feeling of your heart just swelling up with pride and love. I'm so happy and in love with my little family it's beyond words. It's just the best thing on Earth. There is nothing better than a hug from my little boy and a big gummy smile from my little girl. I'm so blessed to have Kenny who works himself to death and allows me to stay home and focus on taking care of our babies. He's my true knight in shining armor, and I love him more and more each day.

    I would also like to share this past Sunday my best friend welcomed her little boy into the world, Mr. Coltin James Brockmeyer. I've been friends with Tashia since 7th grade and we've gone through so much together and shared so many experiences that we are practically sisters. I can tell her anything and know that she will always be there for me no matter what. Seeing her become a mommy makes me so happy because I know what joy a child brings and for her to have that joyful experience is the best thing I could ask for. I wish there weren't 200 miles in between us so I could be there to help her as she recovers but we will be making a trip to visit sometime soon (I'm hoping for next month!).


Saturday, August 31, 2013

1 Month Already

     Lucy is one month old today. Wow. Where did the time go? It seems like we were just coming home from the hospital yesterday. Lucy is growing up too fast already and I'm finding myself already wishing time would slow down. Our little girl is growing so fast. She was 9lbs at her last appointment and I'm sure she's gained another pound if not two since then. I love her chubby little thighs and pudgy wrists. She has already outgrown some of her newborn outfits and I was a little sad to move into the 0-3mo portion of her closet.
      Our stellar photog friend Jenna took some super sweet shots of our perfect princess and I'm totally in love with how they came out. Considering Lucy was crying for the majority of the shoot I'm amazed at how many great pictures she was able to get. You can see them at her blog: Jenna Ebert Photography

     It's been a crazy month full of adjustments for all of us. It's funny, I know every baby is different but I never really thought Lucy would be different from Roxas. Boy was I wrong. Lucy is what I refer to as "high maintenance". She wants to be held almost constantly and eat just as often. I am enjoying these moments though. It seemed like in the the blink of an eye Roxas went from snuggly, itty bitty, baby to this big tank of a toddler who very rarely wants to snuggle. So even if I can't get to all the things I want to get to, I wouldn't trade my time holding and snuggling her for anything.

     Her sleeping habits are by far the most difficult thing I've been dealing with. She likes to be awake from about midnight to 3 or 4am. Then Roxas is up around 7:30...not a lot of sleep for mommy. It's only temporary and will be over soon but it's hard to convince yourself of that when it's 3:30am and you're dead dog tired. Some nights I longingly look at my pillow wishing I could just lay down and go to sleep but it's just not an option.
     Another difficulty we've been having is her tongue-tie. I'm extremely frustrated with the doctors we've seen so far. Her pediatrician noticed it and referred us to the ear, nose and throat doctor. The ENT confirmed she did have a very short frenulum but he didn't want to do anything about it until she was a year old. There is the possibility she will grow out of it and may not need it clipped at that point but if she does it will require sedation and I'm not overly thrilled about it. Not to mention I feel this tongue tie is the reason I'm having such pain with breastfeeding. Thank the Lord for the sheep that give me my tube of lanolin because that's the only thing saving me from having to bite a wooden spoon just to feed little one. She is gaining weight which seems to be why none of the doctors are willing to snip the frenulum. I get the feeling they don't see a problem as long as Lucy is growing. We are going to get a second opinion from a doctor in another town who snipped the frenulum of a friend of ours. Hopefully they will just do it, get it over with and our breastfeeding relationship can improve.

     It's been a crazy trip having both kids. I have really enjoyed this time with them. Sometimes it is rough. There have been times when both kiddos are screaming and it's just not possible to take care of both at the same time. I'm extremely lucky that Roxas is a great big brother and he is ok playing on his own or just sitting next to me reading a book or watching tv. Sometimes I feel bad that we don't get to spend as much time just him and I playing anymore but he seems pretty darn happy so that makes me happy. I'm also lucky to have such a great husband who has been so supportive and helpful. On his days off he will get up with Roxas and I can catch a little bit of sleep when Lucy naps in the morning which is the best thing ever. Our family has also been an invaluable resource. My parents and my in-laws have saved the day for me quite a few times. I don't know what I'd do if I didn't have all this love and support.
     This post-partum period has been so drastically different than last time, I'm actually really enjoying being a new mommy. I didn't realize how miserable I really was last time until I got a handle on it and started feeling better. Sometimes the thoughts still creep in but I'm finding it easier to dismiss them and regain control. I wish I would have figured it out sooner because I truly enjoy my life at the moment. Even with the times where I'm sleep deprived, cranky and both kids are screaming...I still wouldn't trade it for anything.

     I can't wait for the weather to get cooler so we can go to the park, and have some fun outdoors. Now that Roxas is bigger it's a ton of fun playing with him and watching his crazy antics. He is a total ham and loves to make us laugh. He is all boy for sure though, he will headbutt you or body slam you if you're not paying attention.  He learns something new every day and always surprises me. It will be so much fun when Lucy is big enough for him to really play with her, he has been bringing her all kinds of different toys to play with lately. He's a great little helper, even if it's not exactly productive I love seeing how eager he is to help out with his little sister.

     So, that's our first month together as a family of four. It's been crazy, tiring but awesome at the same time. I am excited for what the future holds for us next.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Two Under Two

    Lucy will be two weeks old tomorrow and I can't believe I'm the mommy of two kiddos under two years old. It's still hard to believe this beautiful daughter of ours is here. Maybe by the time the kids go off to college it will feel real.

    Monday was my first day with just me and the kids. Up until then I had Kenny at home spoiling me rotten. He was amazing and pretty much did everything for Roxas while I functioned as all you can eat buffet for Lucy and let my body rest. I think maybe I hyped myself up to expect the worst and that's why I'm surprised caring for two babies by myself wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. Now, it is tough and there have been plenty of times where both have been crying and I had to juggle a little bit with who to tend to first. Still, I haven't even come close to having a breakdown. I even ventured out of the house with both kids and ran a bunch of errands. This all went surprisingly well. I am sure there are tougher days to come, and no doubt I will end up wanting to crawl under a rock and stay there but for now things are going well. Roxas has been doing great with her. He was a little cranky at first but now he's a fantastic little helper. When she cries he will go grab my nursing pillow or a binky for her to "help". Sometimes he tries to share his toys too, and though the thought is sweet we have to be really careful he doesn't accidentally whack her with some of the larger toys.

     After Roxas was born I had a hard time battling post-partum depression. I ignored it for a long time, too long, and it made life miserable for both me and my family. This time I was prepared and I really feel like I'm on top of it now. I've been keeping in touch with my doctor and thanks to my family I have a ton of support and help. I've also boarded the crazy train and I encapsulated my placenta and have been taking capsules every day. It was incredibly easy and so far I think it really has made a difference for me, both with mood and milk supply. So, I might be nuts but if it helps- why not? We have also had so much love and help from our friends and family. The local MOMs Club as well as friends and family have been bringing us meals throughout the past two weeks which has taken SO much stress off of me. It's been a huge blessing not having to worry about making dinner.

    Lucy is a bit more high maintenance than Roxas was. She wants to nurse or be held almost constantly. If she isn't sleeping, she's eating. As a result she is a very healthy 9lbs now! We're having a bit of trouble on the breastfeeding front unfortunately, but I'm stubborn and refuse to give up just because I'm in some pain. The doctor noticed she does indeed have a very short frenulum (that string that ties your tongue to the bottom of your mouth) which may be a big part of why we are having issues. We have an appointment to see an ear nose and throat doctor next week since this type of thing, while not a huge deal, can actually impact speech later. She's a very happy and healthy girl though. She isn't a huge fan of sleeping at night and prefers to stay nice and wide awake from about 12am to 3:30/4am. I don't get a whole lot of sleep anymore but I'm adjusting to it. We did Lucy's newborn pictures this past weekend with the ever talented Jenna Ebert again and I'm so excited to see the finished images. It was quite the experience getting my little drama queen to cooperate with being photographed but just the pictures I saw on her camera were fantastic so I know I will love the finished product!

    I love staring at this perfect little baby that we created. It's still mind boggling that two little cells grew into such a complex and amazing little person. I love being a mommy to both Roxas and Lucy. Every day I get to spend with them is a gift that I'm lucky to have.
 Roxas was giving his sister a kiss <3
 She's a very alert and awake newborn
This was about 3am, wide awake!