Sunday, June 7, 2015


Written after one week recovery. This all happened before / on / around May 14th - so it's almost been a month. 

As my sister in law put it tonight: you've had quite the interesting month. 
Yes, I have. 
Let's step back to the end of April, though. Due to funding reasons I'm let go from the job I held for 2 years. I'm sad, obviously, because I care about downtown revitalization and improving my community. 
I made contact with people that led me to my next position, at a local quick print shop. 
Unbeknownst to me at the time I was pregnant. This didn't turn out so well. I had been feeling bloated, constipated - I know TMI- things were just not working right inside my body and I knew something was wrong, but couldn't figure it out exactly. All I knew was that I was in a lot of pain, and it wasn't going away. I called the nurse one morning- while I was at work. Something happened later that made me call the same nurse again later that morning. She probably saved my life. 
She told me she needed me to go to the ER- she wanted to see labs on me  right away. This was a little bit alarming, but I knew I could trust this nurse. I quickly left work and started to drive to the ER- 45 min. Away. 
I called my husband (using the hands free device he got me for Christmas) and he told me not to drive there. So I drove to where my mother in law works, after a quick call to the babysitter- and she drove me to the ER. 
We arrived at about 11:30am - and they start testing and probing and asking questions. The doctor comes in and says - 'You're pregnant, and let's hope this stomach issues you are having aren't related to being pregnant.' Yikes. Scary. But all very real. 
The beauty about having a smart phone with you is that you have a wealth of information at your fingertips. It's also a curse. I looked up Ectopic pregnancy. Not good. 
The nurse gets some blood from me and starts an IV (since I missed lunch)- at least to keep me hydrated. Within a few hours I am set up in a nice ER room watching Little House on the Prairie episodes. They whisk  me off with an ultrasound technician, who does her job as nicely as possible- and I'm lying on the table crying, because I want to see my kids again. Stupid smartphone and your wealth of information. Another technician comes in and they get what they need- but if she had been within reach I would have punched her- I was already in pain, and she was not helping- and yes, I actually thought about punching her in the face. I can take a lot of pain- obviously, because I lived with this painful 'bloating' situation for about a week- which turned out to be internal bleeding. 
They took me back to my room and told me I would have surgery to remove my right Fallopian tube at 3:30 that afternoon. Basically because the baby had settled in my Fallopian tube rather than my uterus- it exploded. The doctor thought I was about 6 weeks along. Ectopic pregnancies are not to be messed around with and are usually 'discovered' before 8 weeks. 
Back to Little House on the Prairie- it just happened to be the one where Mr. Edwards got mauled by a bear. Oh good. I feel much better now.

I guess that just leaves me to go off to surgery- by 3:00pm or so- they get me prepped and I make a few phone calls- hoping and praying they aren't my last. Hubby wasn't going to get there in time for my surgery- but at least his mom was there with me.  
I hate that surgery room- it's so cold. I remembered that from almost a year ago. I joked with one of the nurses- she asked 'what'd we do to you? Or maybe- 'what service did we provide?' I reminded her. Then I was out. They put me completely under, unlike the birth of my baby. I woke up in the recovery room. I had told the doctors I wanted both Fallopian tubes removed. Even though he said I could still get pregnant with only one. Nope. I have my boy and I have a baby girl and I'm good. I said that- and I'm still saying that because honestly I know that my life was on the line with this last pregnancy. I don't want that anymore. My two kids need me. If I hadn't called the nurse, or if I hadn't listened to her sound advice about going to the ER- I may not be here. My two kids would be without their mom.

After recovery they moved me to a hospital room. They said I could leave later that night. And, yes, if you have a choice to sleep in a hospital bed or sleep in your own bed- take it! Your own bed, that is. With my children sleeping nearby and my husband next to me- I took the pain pills my mother in law ran to get me - before the pharmacy closed- and then she drove me home. I walked into my house around 11pm. Exhausted, cut up, but alive. 
It was surgery- yes- but lathroscopic - so I have 3 small incisions. One on my left side, one by by belly button and one lower than that. The right Fallopian tube had burst. I even have pictures of inside my body. Thanks doc! Although I'll spare you the details of the pictures, because I can't decipher them myself. 
Sunday after church was a little scary, because by then I had started bleeding and didn't know if that was normal or not- plus the information sheet that they gave me said to go back to the ER if I had any of these symptoms- and that was one of them. Blood test came back normal- I guess I was just pushing my recovery to fast. 
Sunday night I got a text that said my services were no longer needed where I was working. Ok. 
Since then I have been driving the day after my surgery, lifting my almost 20lbs. Baby- I'm thankful she's not much heavier- because they put a 20lb. Lifting Weight limit on me for 2 weeks. 
I have basically resumed normal activities- and even mowed the back yard this afternoon. 
My parents came for a few days to help me out. Dad always needs a project to work on- and they needed to give me something for my birthday. Ta-da!

Wood floors underneath ugly, brown 80s matted carpeting. Beautiful!

Only two more rooms to go. The furniture can be moved in on Saturday. Mom and I drove up to see the doctor for a follow up appointment- and basically he asked 'why are you here?' Ha. Okay then. I was told by my regular provider to follow up with you. Keep in mind this doctor doesn't have the best bed side manner. Oh well- he did his job correctly. That's a good thing. 

Earlier in the day baby girl was being fussy and I couldn't answer my phone- it was an employer looking for an interview. I told them I was still interested- it's a job very similar to what I was doing at the job I lost in April.

God is Good. 
All the time. 

All the time.
God is good. 

That's my story. 
I've had: 1 vaginal birth (my son)
1 miscarriage at 5 weeks
1 breech birth requiring a C-section (my daughter)
1 ectopic pregnancy 

It's hard to believe I've actually been pregnant 4 times. 

I know I will see my 2 babies in heaven. Someday. Right now my babies (both big and small) need me. 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Florida 2015

This trip was different. Not only was my husband able to take the week off for vacation- we also traveled with our 9/10 month old. I say that because while we were down there she turned 10 months old.

Let me tell you- the BabyWearing trip down there was so much easier than the non- Baby wearing trip back. Due to my forgetting the Ergo at my parents house. Or mom shutting the light out and it was completely dark as I was leaving the room. 

We improvised on the plane- using my sweatshirt to zip her up in, once she was finally asleep.  You never want to be THOSE people on the plane with the screaming baby.

BabyWearing through Des Moines was so easy- I could walk down to get a coffee with both kids while hubby watched the bags. Could not have done it without him.

After we arrived- we realized the van mom and dad had picked up did not have air conditioning- so they had to go exchange it for one that did. Have you ever been in a vehicle in Florida that didn't have air? In 80 degree temperatures. So while they exchanged it for a van that did- my son and I went to the pool- while hubby stayed with the baby at the house. I knew that was the first thing my son wanted to do. 

We went to Busch Gardens on Tuesday in Florida. It was fun, and it was a big place and again- I can't tell you how many times we were thankful for leaving the stroller in the vehicle. The gondolas that can take you across the park don't allow strollers onboard.

Other people had to leave their strollers there and eventually walk back to get them- or not go on the ride at all.

Stroller city outside of one of the shows we went to. Unfortunately I couldn't keep track of the number of strollers at the park that I saw - but I could count 
the number of baby wearing people on one hand. 

If you are familiar with Baby Wearing - it's easy to do it - 
I've seen toddlers who like their 'uppy' time all the way down to newborns.
Baby Wearing honestly saved my vacation. 

Baby wears her hat while hubby wears her. 

Extra bonding time for grandma! 

There weren't that many rides that we did go on- due to the fact that our son (age 7) isn't really into roller coasters (yet). Plus he wasn't tall enough for the big ones. 
He went on a kiddie roller coaster and that was enough for him. He also went on an up and down ride that we thought he might like, but look at his face in this video. Yikes!

Day 3 (Wednesday) was filled with pool time, bike riding (while BabyWearing- but not recommended, due to the risks) around the community.

Later that same day.... 

Sleepy dust in the Ergo, I left one side of the flap off here because it was hot that day in Florida - by the end of our walk around a swamp (there was a boardwalk) I was having trouble breathing and needed a cool down - 
I choose ice cream, of course! 

Day 4 - Thursday was the day my dad and hubby got to go on a deep sea fishing expo with my parents Church. Mom and I went shopping for a few books and a toy for baby- she loved it!

More pool time, of course.

She's so close to walking! 

Day 5- Friday was filled with a day at the beach- and of course a stop at Heavenly Biscuits on Fort Myers Beach. We went to the beach for about 2 hours- hubby and I got burned by the sun. I guess what fun is Florida if you don't get a little sun? Baby girl clearly loved the beach and sand so much she decided to taste the sand. Yum.

We checked out the popular beach spot. 
But we found a little place of our own - away from the crowds. 

Just bumming on the beach.

One little boy even got buried in the sand! 

Feet in the sand - again. :) 

Grandma and baby just hanging out in the shade. 

My son and hubby got busy with a little creation of their own! 

Saturday was filled with relaxing and a mom - daughter date complete with  pedicures- maybe in a few years baby girl can join us-  a stop at Starbucks, and Wal-Mart. I realized our vacation was quickly coming to an end and we didn't make it to the beach for sunset photos. Dad went and picked up his boat. Swimming with the whole family, because we couldn't go out on the boat.

This was my Saturday, in 4 photos.

Can't forget the cheesy date selfie. Is that a phrase? 'Date Selfie'

Sunday was filled with church in the morning, lunch at Ruby Tuesdays - love their cheddar bites. Now I can say I've been to a Ruby Tuesday's. Yes, I have pinned the recipe for their cheddar bites on Pinterest already. Everyone took naps- well, half of us. The rest of them learned to play shuffleboard. Then we went to Love Boat for ice cream and headed to the beach for sunset photos.

Love Boat Ice Cream (yes, it's a real place) and they even have dairy-free sorbet flavors
(for people like me)! 

Ice Cream in cups, or cones. I like mine in waffle cones.

Mom likes chocolate on top of chocolate. 

My son. He's pretty darn cute - and growing up fast! 

A good shot. 

Love this girl and her smile! 

My mom, the award-winning author

Sunset photo, by the hubby! 

Baby waving 'bye-bye' to the ocean.  This will need to be framed.

Father and daughter. This will also need to be framed. 

My dad holding a seashell with a crab still inside. I love this photo.

Laundry was done and we packed to leave the next day- early.
Left the house the next day at 6:30am for a 9:30am flight.

Stopped by Chick-fil-A for breakfast. The last meal in Florida. 

Back to reality. 

And I'm waiting for the package from mom and dad that has my Ergo in it! Just because I left my Ergo in Florida, does not mean my baby wearing days are over. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

8 & 9 month

The time has flown by! Wasn't she just born?
At 8 months old she was crawling- now at 9 months old she's everywhere- into everything. And cruising. Pulling herself up and moving from furniture to furniture. She'll do a few seconds of standing by herself, but then she sits down. Sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly.
We had about 10 days in January when we had a 7 year old and a 7 month old. 
That was neat. From Jan. 10 - Jan. 20th.

She's smaller than most of her peers, and that's okay. Hubby says she's just perfect. 
As long as she's healthy- does she need to be chunky? Nope.
She likes to be active. Constantly moving, getting into stuff. Super active at 9pm- but even when I was pregnant with her that's when she was kicking hard or having the hiccups! We go to bed around 9:30pm, and she'll come with us then because I know she's had other naps throughout the day.
She's been better about sleeping through the night! Yay! 
Once at 5:30am or even 6am is way better than 3:30 in the morning!

It's not my imagination- this girl has grown! She's moved up to 6 month clothing! It seems like she was in her 3-6 month clothes FOREVER! more cute clothes! Yates said ! I don't think we are ready to move up one more step,yet. But like I was telling another mom friend of mine- every clothing manufacturer is different- some run small, some run huge! I wish they could figure out a standard way of measuring- this is 2015- you'd think they would be able to do that by now! Even women's clothing is all over the map. Why do men get it so easy? 34 waist, 36 height. Easy. But how would you measure a baby like that??
Every baby is different.
She's babbling now: first word was definitely "daddy" second word was "kitty". It's never "mommy" I know it'll come.

I give her 2 months- and she'll be walking. 
I can picture her and her brother running circles around the inside of our house chasing each other. 
My brother and I did that when we were young. 
She'll be walking before her 1st birthday.

What she thought of me taking her photo for 8 months old. 

Growing up way to fast. I forgot how quickly the first year goes by. My sons prayer at every family dinner: 
thank you for the food, thank you for Caroline, I just love her so much.
Sweet boy, I will need to record that and play it back to you when you are fighting with your sister. 
There will be fights. I'm positive, because I'm a mom.

Tell me what you really think, baby girl. 

Taking photos of her and I together

Things she likes/loves: daddy, kitty, mommy, brother, baby food bananas,baby food peas, bottle, puffs, pacifier (that might be hard to break her of), getting into stuff that's not hers!
Things she dislikes: holding still for diaper changes, going into her car seat- although once she's in it, she's usually fine- as long as she's moving! Baby food pears, any mixed foods together, baby food meats (have you smelled that stuff?ugh). Being in her playpen (confinement).

Cruising along furniture, with Save Ottuwma's weekly Post close by. 

Baby wearing at the Soup Cook-Off at my child's school. 

Things she's going to experience in the next month: first airplane ride, first time in the ocean, first time in Florida, first time swimming in a pool- she's been swimming before, but she was really little this summer and wasn't sure of what to do- she really likes splashing in the bathtub, so it should be fun for her now!

9 months? How can this girl be 9 months old already?!? 

We will leave Iowa with a 9 month old and come back with a 10 month old! 
Crazy how in just a few months I'll be planning her 1 year old birthday party!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Snow Party!

So on January 10th my son turned 7. 

Hard to believe. Time flies when you are having fun! 

He's 7, so he loves Legos, Animals, his baby sister, and his mom and dad - and of course Jesus. 
He loves his Legos. Although his Lego table will soon have to move to his room! 
 The invite was simple. Duplicated and cut in half card stock. 

Grandma Shirley and baby sister taking it all in. 

He loves the snow, so he wanted a snow party. Keep in mind the several years that he has had a birthday themed party there has been little to no snow on the ground. Yes, I know we live in Iowa. Yes, I know he was born in January. He was born in an Ice Storm! 

Snow Party it is: 
The question is, how do you plan a Snow Party for a boy that isn't everything Frozen themed? 

Here's what we did: 
Craft: Made Snow Globes (it's helpful to have a baby who eats baby food)

The birthday boy and his snowman!

Do you want to build a snowman?
A few years back I helped plan a bridal shower for my sister-in-law and someone found this toilet paper that doesn't tear at the dollar store. I saved it. Perfect for a fun activity like this with the kids. They got to wrap up their friend - and everyone got some energy out! 

Thanks to Hy-Vee for having this cupcake tree!
Not everything is Anna and Elsa! (They are on the other side)
How to make your own Pom-Poms for the ultimate Snowball fight! 

Hubby got into the games!
One game we played was: Snowman Slam - used with the Pom-Poms I made ahead of time

Snowman Slam game - my 7 year old is pretty creative!
This is something he could and did help with!

Food and Snack: Snowman Dessert Dip - served with pretzel sticks of course. 

Snowblower Game - which wasn't as successful as I thought it would be. 
But you don't know until you try it! 

Snowblower game

Food: The local donut shop advertised these Olaf donuts the actual day of his birthday - I ran down and told them I wanted a dozen. They said, "Oh, is the party today?" I said "Nope it's tomorrow." They said, "Oh, you want them fresh!" Done and adorable. They were a big hit! 

He got a free Snowman donut on his birthday from the local donut shop! Love that place!
I was going to make cool blue hot chocolate, but found out I couldn't do that just half an hour before the party was supposed to start, so blue Powerade it was! 

It even snowed when we were having the snow party.
Big Flakes. How did I do that? I shook a snow globe, that's how! 

Follow my Parties board on Pinterest. I always have fun looking for ideas and I don't always end up doing everything I pin, but it's fun and before the party is always super stressful, but somehow it all works out. My ideal party would be well behaved children doing exactly what they are supposed to do. But after several years of doing this- that isn't the reality. Kids need to be kids. They need to be crazy, run around, have fun and growl at each other - yes, they actually did this! 

Got all the kids to throw their snowballs at me! 

Picking up from the best indoor snowball fight ever! 

This is the best photo I have of him looking at me. *sigh* He is 7 now. 
All the kids - best photo - with the snow in the background! 
It was fun, crazy and I hope everyone had a fun time. I was exhausted when I got home of course - but it was all worth it! Will I plan another one? I'm not sure. He'll be 8 next year. The next birthday party I will plan will be little girls, and since it's her first birthday it will be pretty low-key.

Happy New Year!