Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Laundry

We've been making our own laundry detergent for awhile now, but I want to make it smell like the Gain I used to use. Any suggestions?

I found a guide for mixing essential oils, but not sure I would like any of those scents.




Sunday, January 27, 2013

Happy Weekend

I still haven't been doing much blogging here, I have been blogging on my private weight loss blog though. That's what my life is consisting of right now. Really focused on losing more weight and exercising.

The girls are well, growing too quickly though. Alexis is at her first birthday party today where I dropped her off and will go back to pick her up at the end of the party. It was cowgirl theme and she had a blast dressing for it. We went to The Family Center last week and both the girls got cowboy boots. They'd been begging for us to get them some ever since Ross and I got new boots back in the fall. We finally caved and decided to get them some. They look so adorable in them!

Life is pretty normal and quiet for now, and I'm loving it that way. If you would like to read my weight loss blog, send me your email address and I will invite you. I prefer to keep it private for now. I've shared some unflattering pictures and even more unflattering scale numbers. But, I'm now sharing after pictures, which look much nicer, and much more acceptable scale numbers as well!

Hope you all are enjoying your Sunday. The weather is yucky, cold and rainy here today, although it's supposed to reach 70 tomorrow, but be back into the teens by the end of the week. Go figure, we do live in Missouri after all. I plan to curl up with my little girls after we pick up Alexis, and watch a good movie.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Nap time

Okay Parents. I have a question about napping. When did your children stop taking naps?

If I remember correctly, Alexis stopped napping between 3 and 4. That's also when she started sleeping much better at night. Going to sleep fast and staying asleep and in her bed all night.

Isabel is getting close to no naps....I think. I sure wish she would just give them up already. Yesterday for example, we managed to keep her awake all day. She only got out of bed once at bedtime, instead of multiple times. She did end up in bed with us, but that's pretty typical. Today, she's already napping right now, her usual nap time isn't until anywhere from 3-5, but I think she fell asleep earlier because of no nap yesterday. She usually wants to be held and then falls asleep. Today she crawled up in one of the recliners and was out in no time.

I'm just wanting some feed back from you all on your children's experience with naps.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Beach Memories

In September we vacationed in Gulf Shores, AL for a week. The 4 of us, plus Ross' parents and Ross' sister. We had an amazing time! I can't wait to be at the beach again. I thought I'd share a few pictures. I'm sure I'll share more later on as I want to look back and remember our fabulous time!

This was the view from our back deck
 The girls had a blast playing in the waves!

 This was the same day as the two above, but in the first two pictures it was overcast, and then the sun came out!

 Several mornings, when we were sitting on the deck having coffee, we saw dolphins playing out in the water. That's what the splash you can kind of make out in this picture.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Re-Publishing....

A while back, I asked a few of my blogger friends to guest post for me. For some reason, this particular post is being spammed like crazy. I've gotten I don't know how many emails in the last week or two with comment notifications, all spam, grrrrr. So I deleted the original post and am re-publishing it today.


You can find Chrissy's blog here.

God's Perfect Timing

One afternoon, after my husband arrived home from work, I decided to head out and take back a Red Box DVD we rented the day before and grab a Coke from Sonic. While I was out and about, I got a strange whim to get my hair cut. I did not have an appointment; I just walked in and my girl was able to squeeze me in! I arrived back home, hopped in the shower, and then helped my husband get the kids ready for Wednesday night church. He left with our two oldest kiddos, and then it was just me an our baby at home. I put on some make-up and straightened my hair.

I was to arrive early for choir that night, so instead of being at church around 7:30, I moseyed on over there at about 6:45 - still earlier than than the music minister asked, but I figured I'd visit with some of the people who were there for Bible study.

Then, for some weird reason, I realized I forgot to put on deodorant.

Are you wondering what this has to do with God's timing?


I debated with myself if I should go home. I sort of felt self-conscious, but tried to rationalize that I just showered, and it's not like I was going to work out or anything! I could just stay there and not worry about it. But for some reason I felt like I should go home. So I strapped my youngest boy in his car seat, hopped in the van, and went back home.

As I was driving down the street that connects to ours, I looked up ahead. In front of a green duplex, I saw a small, 2-year-old boy wearing just a diaper. He was playing joyfully in a mud puddle right on the road. I slowed down. I stopped. I looked to see if his parents were out watching him play in the puddle, but I thought to myself, "Who would let their 2-year-old child play in the road?"

There were no parents.

My heart started beating fast (like it is now as I recall this story). "I need to take this child to his mom!" I thought to myself. I slowly pulled into the driveway, got out of my van, and gently took the boy up to the door. I guess the mom heard my door shut and noticed a vehicle in her driveway, because she met me at the door.

"He was just playing out here and I was worried," I said to her.

Her eyes got big. Her mouth dropped open as she realized what had happened.

"I was just cooking dinner and I didn't even notice! Thank you so much. Oh, my gosh. I just didn't know..."

I didn't even know what to say. This could happen to anyone.

"My two-year-old could sneak out, too. I'm just glad I was here."

I went back to my van, backed out of the drive, and continued home. I was in so much shock that I barely even remembered why I was heading home in the first place.

Oh yeah. Deodorant.

The cliche that "God works in mysterious ways" is an understatement here. That boy could have wondered off, and to be quite honest, people don't exactly drive slowly down that particular street. I know He put me there at that exact time to take that boy to his front door.

I gave all that detail at the beginning for a few reasons: 1. I have no idea why I decided to get my hair cut that day. If I hadn't gotten it cut, I would not have showered when I got home (because I like to wash it myself when I get it cut); 2. Since I showered, I needed new deodorant! I'm serious when I say I NEVER forget this...it's a part of my routine, and I don't know why I forgot.

But really. I know why I forgot. God used such an odd thing. But He used it. And it was perfect.

Lord, I pray that I will always hear Your voice, even if it's just telling me to go home for deodorant...

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Super Bad Blogger

So, I am horrible at keeping up with this blog. Obviously the only time I can is when I'm not working. Right now I'm on Temporary Lay Off from Walmart, so I'm going to try and squeeze in a few posts. I really shouldn't even be sitting down here doing this right now, but I am.

A lot of time has passed since my last post. I'll try and give an overview of the last 6 months.

In July, Ross and I went on a diet (hCG) and both lost some weight. Ross lost 50 and I lost 35. It felt awesome to get rid of all the baby weight and get back down to what I was when we got married. (I still have more I need to lose and have started another round of the hCG this month.)

Summer was good, busy like always. We spend as much time in the water (pool, creek, river) as possible during the hot months. I got a pretty rocking tan this year as well!

In September we went to Gulf Shores, AL for a week, totally awesome!! I would go to the beach every time we go on vacation, but Ross says that we've been to the beach twice now, we have to pick a different terrain for our next big trip.

Fall rushed in, probably busier than Summer, that's my very favorite time of year! We had another Fall Party at our house and it was great.

Got to spend some quality time with my best friend Amy several times over the past few months. That's one thing that we've promised each other this year, making time to get together. We only live an hour away from one another and we have such kindred spirits, we just need to see one another more often than we were since we rekindled our friendship. Her and Chris are getting married in October, so that's for sure going to be something that will get us together often, wedding planning! We already took a girl weekend in November for shopping and fun and had a total blast! ;)

Getting over losing David has been a strange journey. After the first month or two, I felt pretty okay and like life had returned to normal. I was fine and didn't get weepy or sad like I thought I might. I almost felt guilty that I wasn't sadder. But, around the middle of October, it hit me. I should have been delivering him at anytime and that's when the emptiness and sadness overtook me. Every since the coming and passing of the due date, I have moments when I really miss our baby that should be here with us. It was hard at all the holidays especially. I look forward to later this year when we try again. I have major baby fever and can't wait to hold, smell and love on a sweet newborn again.

The girls have both grown and changed so much over the past few months. Alexis is 5½ and started kindergarten at home this year. She is doing really well. Isabel turned 3 in September and is still as rotten as the day is long, but so sweet at times and still my snugly baby girl. Not sure what she'll do when we actually have a baby at home and she won't be able to be held whenever she wants. Alexis and Isabel are the true definition of sisters, they'll be fighting like crazy one minute and sweet and loving the next. I just hope they remain close as they get older. I remember laying in bed one night, listening to them chatting with each other in their room, hoping that it would be the same 10 years from now when they are 15 and 13(that's a scary thought, 15 and 13 year old daughters!).

Ross is excellent, lawn mowing season wasn't the best this year because of the drought, but the girls and I enjoyed having him at home more. He got to go to day shift in August and has been loving it. He has a great routine now and I look forward to the day when I get to stay at home and be done with my night shift, messed up schedule.  Because of his change, we no longer have to have babysitters, one step closer to getting me home full time.

The holidays were wonderful! We spent Thanksgiving at Ross' grandparents house with lots of yummy food and most of the family there. Christmas was 4 days straight of family and friends. Started off at Amy and Chris', Ross' Grandparents, Ross' parents on Christmas Eve, Christmas morning at home and then my parents. Then one more Christmas at Mom and Dad's again on the 29th and 30th with siblings.

I know a lot more has happened than just that, but that's what I'm covering at this point. I'll try and share some pictures soon, but I think I'm friends with most of you on Facebook, so you probably already know all that I just shared. If you aren't and you want to friend me, please do, it's my favorite way of keeping up with people because it goes with me on my phone and I can squeeze that in a lot easier than writing or reading blog posts. You can find me on Facebook here

Until the next time, blessings to you! :)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

David's Birth Story

David's birth story begins on Thursday May 3rd, even though I didn't realize it at the time. Alexis had double class week at dance, so the girls and I had been to Rolla that evening. I did some Walmart shopping while we were out, nothing out of the ordinary. That evening after we got home, I had a terrible lower backache. Usually, with a little rest it would've been fine, but nothing was relieving my discomfort. I tried a heating pad, was taking Tylenol and nothing was working. I went to bed with my aching back and hoped to have some relief in the morning.

No change when I woke up Friday morning. The day proceeded as normal, nothing different than any other day, just a horrible backache. Friday evening I noticed a pinkish, light brownness in my discharge. I wasn't too concerned at first, I knew this was common sometimes.

Saturday morning came and I still had a backache and discoloration in my discharge. Sunday came and it was still the same. I was starting to get concerned. I texted my sister, Jaimee, and asked her opinion. She asked the usual question, any intercourse, that can cause a pink discharge, the answer was no. By Sunday evening, my discharge was heavier and redder, more like the spotting of a period. I made the decision that night before bed that I was going to the doctor first thing Monday morning. I didn't have an appointment, but I knew I needed some answers.

As I laid in bed that night, I might have slept for an hour or two. My mind was racing and going over the possibilities of what could be happening. "Miscarriage" was flashing in my mind like a bright neon sign. I was 14 weeks and 6 days pregnant so I had hopes that wasn't the case. I prayed a lot and asked God to give me peace and prepare me for whatever could be happening.

I finally couldn't sleep anymore, I got up, showered and got myself ready. We were in Rolla before 8am. I called the OB's office to see if someone besides Dr. Cunningham (it was her day off) could see me. Thankfully, Dr. Ratchford fit me in at 9:15.

The first thing he did after I explained what was happening was an ultrasound. I had never heard a more beautiful sound than when I heard my babies heart beating. I was so relieved, but still concerned about the bleeding. Next, he did a cervical exam, everything appeared normal, my cervix was thick and closed. He then consulted with Dr. Jim McCaul and they decided to ultrasound my cervix vaginally as well to check for any problems.

My cervix measured normal, my placenta was still attached. He pressed on my uterus and couldn't find any opening in the cervix. While he rambling all this stuff he also said, "It's still a boy." I was completely flabbergasted! We didn't want to know the sex. At first I thought I heard him wrong so I said, "What do you mean it's still a boy?" He then realized that we didn't want to know. Once I was over the shock, I had him show me what he saw, I was so floored, we had been hoping for a boy even though we would have been happy with any baby so long as it was healthy. I started crying and then blabbering on about if I would tell Ross or keep it to myself. He and the girls had stayed in the waiting room for this part since it was a vaginal ultrasound, didn't know how the girls would respond to that.

So, the doctors orders were, pelvic rest, no heavy lifting and no intercourse for two weeks once the bleeding stopped. I went out of there a bundle of emotions. Confused, because I was so excited we were having a boy, but a little disappointed about finding out before the birth. Concerned that I was still bleeding, but happy to have heard his heartbeat. I barely made it out to the waiting room before I blurted it out to Ross that we were having a boy. He was the same way I was, a little upset that we didn't get that surprise at delivery, but still excited. In hindsight, I'm glad we knew beforehand. It would have been even more painful to be told he was a boy after losing him.

We headed home and I made the calls to work, I was supposed to return from my 5 weeks off on Tuesday. With everything that was going on, I didn't feel comfortable bouncing around on my fork lift yet. My bosses were understanding, they told me to take as much time as I needed. I pretty much just laid on the couch the rest of Monday.

Tuesday came and I did the same, rested, still spotting. By the time I went to bed Tuesday night, my bleeding had increased in brightness and heaviness. It was starting to feel like a period. My backache had also not let up at all. I was sitting on a heating pad a lot.

I woke up around 5am Wednesday morning to pee. The pantyliner I was wearing was full and I had leaked through my panties and pajama pants onto the sheet. I went downstairs and cleaned myself up. Every time I stood up I could feel the pantyliner filling and I was passing clots. After changing it two more times I dug out one of the jumbo pads from the hospital that I had leftover from Isabel. I got a bag of ice for my back and was going to try and go back to sleep. It wasn't working. I woke Ross up and told him that the bleeding was heavier and I wanted to go to the ER. I wanted him to call his dad and have him come up to stay with the girls. He argued that he didn't want to bother his dad, people that didn't have family close would have no choice but to take their kids with them. I pleaded with him again, he didn't realize how serious it was until I got out of bed and he saw the sheet. He immediately called his dad and we got dressed and headed for PCRMC in Rolla. I texted my sister again so she could pass it along to Dr. C that we were going in. I was hoping if Dr. C had rounds that morning she could come and check on me.

We arrived at the hospital around 6:20am. It took them a little while to get me into a room. They drew blood and got a urine sample. The nurse came in and talked for awhile and then found his heartbeat with the thing (can't remember what it's called) they listen with. A relief, but I knew something was terribly wrong. The ER doctor came in and we talked some more. She was going to consult with Dr. C and see what her next step should be. While we were waiting on her, I became very uncomfortable and was trying to ignore the fact that I was having contractions. They were pretty intense and coming quickly. Ross pushed the call button and told the tech we needed to see the doctor right away.

The ER doctor came in and did a cervical exam, I was still extremely uncomfortable. She used the tool first and then her hand. When she removed her hand I felt a rush of fluids come out of me. I looked up and asked want just happened? The look on her face was panic. She immediately put her hand back in and said, "I'm so sorry, but I think the baby is at the opening of your cervix right now."

At that point I knew there was nothing that could fix this, I was having a miscarriage. I immediately started sobbing and Ross tried to be strong, but soon was crying as hard as I was. We held one another and cried while the ER doc held him inside me. Dr. C arrived and took over, we could tell the ER doctor was unsure of what to do. Dr. Cunningham delivered David at 8:50am Wednesday May 9th, the whole time I was crying and shaking uncontrollably. I kept hearing them say, "We need another chuck pad." I could feel that I was bleeding heavily. Dr. C kept rubbing my knee and telling me how sorry she was. It was such a relief in the midst of all the commotion and grief to have her there. She gave me some medicine to try and get the placenta to deliver, but it wasn't. My bleeding hadn't slowed yet, so they took me to surgery for a D&C.

While all this was happening, I did hold my baby boy and look at him. He was perfect in every way possible and very tiny. Stephanie and another nurse from OB had come down as well, it was obvious the ER staff was in over their head a little. It was good to have all those knowledgable hands taking care of me.

We had made a few calls before all this happened to let family know that we were at the hospital. Ross tried to call my parents and tell them, but had to give the phone to Dr. C and she told them for us. They immediately got in their van to come down. Ross' mom also left the city and came down to Steelville as well.

That, in a not so small nutshell are how the events of my last few days of pregnancy played out. After I got out of surgery and into a room my parents came in and we all grieved together. They brought our son to us and let us spend some time holding him. Many tears were shed by us all. It took us awhile to decide if we were even going to name him. David came to me and Ross liked it too.

The girls came up with Ross' parents a little later in the day. That was tough to try and explain to them what happened. We spent the rest of the day and evening trying to make the necessary decisions about how to proceed with a funeral and burial and so forth. We did not let the girls see him. For those of you who have seen the pictures, I'm sure you understand. It's not how it was supposed to be and we didn't want them to remember him that way.

I had lost a lot of blood, my number was 13 when I checked in and 8 after surgery. 7 is when they would have transfused. I had to stay overnight because of that. My number was back up to 9 1/2 by the next morning and we got to go home.

Both of our parents and my sister indulged my every whim for food and drinks and I had comfort food that night at the hospital.

I received a ton of texts that day from family offering condolences and prayers, it was a small comfort in the midst of the sorrow. I also had an outpouring of love once I shared it on Facebook as well. You will never know how touched I was by all the kind words and prayers offered.

I took full advantage of the pain meds the doctor offered and spent about a week numbing myself before I decided to deal with any physical discomfort I might still have. It wasn't fair that I had experienced the pain of labor and delivery and had no new baby to show for it.

This is all I can say for now, it's been a little emotional to relive this while writing it. I do feel that we are healing. We have even decided when we will try for another baby, still quite a ways off though.

Friday, June 29, 2012

News

Hi friends. I know I haven't been blogging a lot again, not because I haven't had blog posts in my head, just no time to get them out.

Life has been so busy. Summer always is, but this summer seems even busier. Here's a little recap of the past few weeks:

June 9th: Our monthly LIFE Seminar in St. Louis
June 10th: Not sure, but I think we were at the river.
June 15th: Took off work and spent the afternoon/evening with my Dad for Father's Day
June 16th: Alysia and Ben's wedding. This is also when I fell and sprained both my ankles, one of them severely.
June 17th: Father's Day, had lunch at Ross' grandparents and then spent the afternoon at Dry Creek swimming.
June 18th-22nd: Girls had swimming lessons at the pool every morning from 10-12
June 23rd: 40th Anniversary Party for Ronnie and Tena Slovensky
June 24th: Swimming at Tiger Shark Water Park with my sister and her kids

While life is certainly busy, I'm loving every minute of the summer fun we are having! And as a bonus, I'm rocking one of the best tans I've ever had!

Yesterday was Ross' birthday. We are going out with our friends, Amy and Chris, to celebrate tomorrow. Amy's birthday was the 26th, Ross' the 28th and Chris' is July 1st.

Today, my brother, Matt and his wife Sera Kate welcomed their first baby, a healthy boy, still unnamed at this point. I am thrilled for them, but it's also a reminder that I'm no longer pregnant and expecting my own baby boy. I can't wait to see him and hold him, he looks so sweet! I just hope I can keep it together and not cry until later. I wouldn't want to make anyone feel bad.

I do try and find positive things about what happened to our baby, although positive doesn't sound quite right, I'm not sure how to put it though. It has been extremely hot this past week and will continue to be for at least another week. My work is not air conditioned, so in a way, I'm glad I'm not trying to work in this unbearable heat while being 6 months pregnant. Ross and I are starting the hCG diet tomorrow and are going to lose a bunch of weight, I wouldn't be doing that if I was still pregnant. I will get to be on the beach and not be 8 months pregnant. Instead, I'll hopefully be at least 40 pounds lighter than I am now. I'm just trying to find a plus side to what happened so I don't focus on all the negative and sadness of it.

I have David's birth story in my head and will be putting it down here as soon as I have an hour or so free to get it all out. I don't want to forget any details, and since both the girls have their birth stories well documented on my blog, I felt David deserves the same.

I haven't cried in quite awhile, but I try and not focus on the things that will make me cry, I still feel sadness, but not as overwhelming as it was in the beginning. The girls still mention him, and I'm thankful they are not just putting it aside and forgetting that they have a brother in heaven.

That's it for now, I'll try and get some new pictures of the kids and our life up soon.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Van Shopping

We have decided to start our search for a minivan. The used car lot in town has lots of nice vehicles come through, but not many minivans. We saw one on Friday morning and pulled in to check it out. Ross' Uncle Jerry sells cars there and was telling us what he knew about it. I test drove it today and we are keeping it overnight so Ross can drive it tomorrow.

It's a 2005 Dodge Grand Caravan, with 98,000 miles. It's in excellent condition, inside and out. It drives nice and has a good price too.

We had originally thought we would shop for a Honda Odyssey, and I still really like them, but not sure if we want that much debt right now.

Here's a picture of it:

Monday, June 4, 2012

Happy Anniversary To Us

It was 7 years ago today that Ross and I said our vows and started our married life together. It's been 11½ years since we started dating. I love him more now than I ever have before and I have a feeling that will only continue to grow over time. I'm pretty sure that's the way marriage is supposed to be!

We got a babysitter last night and went out on a date! We started at Lowe's, Ross had a return to make and I browsed paint colors for the living room. (It desperately needs an update, the color scheme we chose a few years ago was a bad choice for long term.) Next stop was dinner at Colton's. We ordered some fried pickles for an appetizer and both got the 6 oz. sirloin with smashed potatoes and a dinner salad. It was yummy all the way around.

We had a little time to kill before our movie was starting so we stopped by Kohl's and I got a few more new shirts and Ross got some shorts. I also got an idea of something to get him for Father's Day/Birthday. We went to the theater and saw The Avengers. Awesome movie! We now need to play catch up and watch Captain America and Thor, we've already seen both the Iron Man movies and Ross has seen the latest Hulk movie as well. We stopped at Sonic for ice cream on the way home to complete our date. It was really nice to get to spend all that time with Ross all to myself and not sharing him with two other girls ;) He even opened my car door for me all evening. He always did that until we had the girls and we each have a girl to get in and get buckled, I felt quite spoiled by his gentlemanly ways!

It's just such a comforting feeling to know that you have someone that loves you as much you do him. And to know that I don't have to ever be alone, he'll always be there for me. I couldn't imagine my life without him. And yes, we have our squabbles and know how to push each others buttons, I don't know any couple that doesn't from time to time. But, we have a special connection that no one outside of a marriage really gets, it's very precious.

Here are a few of our wedding pictures: