Wednesday, December 30, 2009

On Order

Tomorrow I hit 11 weeks. Hard to believe!

So I cracked again this time and decided to rent a doppler again. With Grayson, I was able to hear his sweet little heart beating right at 11 weeks. My doppler won't arrive this time around til Monday...at least that's what the UPS tracking tells me. So by then I will be 11 weeks 4 days. Really hoping I hear everything and all is well on Monday. Everyone says you should be able to hear it at 11 weeks, but that you shouldn't freak out if you can't because it can be up until 13 or 14 weeks.

I have a feeling though that I will be freaking out on Monday if I hear silence. So fingers crossed and much prayers asked for the sound of galloping horses in my very near future.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Bringin' Mittens Back!

I have to share this you tube video with you guys. Just in time for the holidays Grayson and his best friend Nate are bringing Mittens Back! Check it out here. He is the one who wouldn't keep his mittens on. Child actors...what are you gonna do? :-)

Merry Christmas everyone!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Coming Out....Well, Partially

I have been rather quiet on here over the past weeks, because I've been keeping something to myself.

I am PREGNANT!

We are super excited and of course a little nervous. I have had 2 ultrasounds so far, the most recent being yesterday, and both have been great. Measuring good, heartbeat strong (188).

I'm am 9 weeks 1 day today. Hard to believe.

I've only made it to this point with 2 out of my 5 pregnancies - which feels pretty good. And I've also been pretty darn queasy all day every day, which has been oddly comforting. Yesterday's u/s was the least nervous I've ever been going in to one.

I'd show you my adorably cute little blob on the u/s photo, but I haven't scanned it yet. We have a 3rd one on January 8th - and I will be 12 weeks then. So I'll be sure to post after that.

I really think that this is one is going to stick. I'm already very attached to this little bean and am making all kinds of plans for a July 21st due date. Grayson will be just over 2 which is a great age gap I think.

Keep us in your thoughts and prayers. And...if you know me in real life, I'm doing my best to keep this under wraps for a few more weeks. (Although, I sure feel like I look pregnant already so this could be tough). So...shhhh. Don't tell anyone! And if you want to offer me congrats in person...please do so discreetly. Thanks!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

In Threes

They always say bad things come in threes. I just now learned that a 3rd friend of mine has miscarried. It was one week ago today I found out about one, 5 days ago I found out about another and just 5 minutes ago I found out about the last. They were anywhere from 8 weeks along to 3 1/2 months along. The distance in pregnancy doesn't really matter. It all royally sucks.

My heart is super heavy for my friends right now. Some I know better than others, but that doesn't change my heart breaking for them.

It has me thinking a lot about my own quest for bambino #2. We are steady trying these days...so far with no success. I'm currently in the 2 week wait...my least favorite part of the whole cycle for sure. If it is true and bad things come in threes, I can't help but wonder if because I've already had 3 losses if I'm exempt from more? Or if there are three more to come before I get the joy of another Grayson? I must admit I'm living in fear right now, but trying not to. It's hard though.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Woosh

Just saw on facebook that a friend lost her baby. She is 10 weeks along. Woosh. All my emotions on the day I discovered my losses come flooding back. It hate how unfair miscarriages are.

There are lots of other pregnant ladies in our circle and I know how hard it will be for her to watch their bellies grow while hers doesn't.

Pray for Sarah and her husband Zack. Today sucks for them.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Firsts

The past 15 1/2 months have been full of too many "firsts" to keep track of.

First time Grayson smiled
First time he said "mama"
First crawl
First steps
First explosive poop
First tooth
First time puking in the car
First time playing in the snow
First time in the pool
First trip to Disney world...and puking in the car

This weekend we were outdoors having fun at a wine festival and Grayson did another first. We were walking next to each other, and he reached up for my hand. Melt my heart! Now, we hold hands a lot when we walk, but up to this point I've had to grab his. But not this time. He looked up at me, smiled, and reached up. I wish I could have it on video, but I know it will be forever engrained perfectly in my brain.

Oh it's the moments like this that make every tear shed in the "trying" worth it, and make me know that I can go through the "trying" again, even if it gets hard again.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Where's Pop?

My husband's parents spend a lot of time at their home in Florida, but Grayson sure does love them and miss them when they're gone. He has this little photo album of them that he looks at all the time. And if you ask him "Where's Pop?", he will go straight for it..


video

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Recipes!!

I LOVE to cook. My husband though for the first 6 3/4 years of our marriage would just assume eat peanut butter & jelly for every meal. I was so excited at the beginning of the summer when he told me he wanted to start eating "real" meals for dinner as long as they were healthy. So since then I've been cooking at least 4 nights a week and loving every minute of it. Something about searching out of recipes, buying all the ingredients and preparing them is so relaxing to me. And I love that we have now started a great tradition of eating together as a family.

I thought I'd share a few recipes I've made this summer that I have thoroughly enjoyed. And the best part...none of them are super bad for you!

Fish Tacos
Serves 2 to 4 people

For the Fish....
Sprinkle a mild fish (I use mahi mahi, but tilapia, etc., would work great too) with salt pepper, cumin and chili powder. Saute in a small amount of EVOO over medium high heat until cooked through. Shred between 2 forks and set aside ( I use 1 fish filet per person...which is enough for 2 people plus leftovers for lunch the next day.)

For the Pico De Gallo
Dice/seed 1 large tomato, 1/2 a red onion and chop a good handful of cilantro. Combine with juice from 1 lime and set aside.

For the Chipotle Aioli

the key ingredient that is super yummy!
6 T. mayo (I use lowfat)
2 T. chopped fresh cilantro or 2 tsp. dried
1 to 2 cloves minced garlic (i like to use the hand graters for this)
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. chili powder
4 tsp lime juice (about 1/2 of a good sized lime)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Combine together, mix well and chill til ready to serve

Warm flour tortillas in the oven or microwave (i just wrap in paper towel and heat for 30 to 45 seconds)

To assemble tacos, put desired amount of fish in tortilla, top with pico de gallo and drizzle with the aioli. It is delicious!

Mexican Corn on the Cob
Wrap 2 to 4 ears of corn on the cob in very wet paper towels (each ear should have it's own wrapping)
Place on a plate and microwave for 4 minutes
This makes perfect corn on the cob every time!
Then rub the corn with a small amount of mayo (sounds weird I know..but trust me!)
Then sprinkle with a small amount of chili powder and salt
This is a great side for the tacos.

Tonight, I made Scallops with Herbed Raw Tomato Sauce courtesy of Rachael Ray. It really was easy and I used a mixture of fresh and dried herbs, and frozen scallops that I thawed out. And it was really yummy! 30 minute meals with Rachael Ray was my 1st inspiration to start cooking back in the first year of our marriage.

I also made my lunch for tomorrow...and my husbands lunch for the middle of the night (he's been on night work all summer so his lunch is at like 2 in the morning). It's a Greek Salad recipe from the magazine Cuisine at Home (which has been the source of some of my favorite recipes in the past). It's very easy to assemble and is great for leftovers as well.

For the dressing
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 T. olive oil
1 T. sugar
2 cloves minced garlic
1/4 tsp each dried rosemary, thyme, and oregano (recipe calls for fresh..but i've always used dried instead since I have it on hand)
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
Salt
Whisk together, cover and refrigerate
Set aside 1/4 cup to marinate chicken

For the Chicken
Marinate in dressing for 5 minutes to 2 hours
Grill or saute until cooked through
Slice into strips

For the Salad
2 Hearts of Romaine chopped - Or bagged romaine lettuce prewashed and chopped
1 to 2 tomatoes diced
1/2 english cucumber diced
1/2 cup kalamata olives pitted and diced (I buy already pitted)
1/2 cup feta cheese (I add more because I love it!)
1 cup assorted bell peppers diced (most the time I just use 1 red bell pepper)
1/2 red onion diced or slivered
(I eyeball all above ingredients.....and sometimes omit something if I'm out of it)

Combine all ingredients for salad, mix with dressing and toss in chicken.
Can be served with Pita Bread

Monday, August 24, 2009

The First Disney Experience

Last weekend I headed to Orlando for a cousin's wedding. And I couldn't be in such close proximity of Disney without making a detour to the happiest place on earth! I LOVE Disney and look forward to many future trips with Grayson as he gets older. My husband couldn't make the pre-trip, and made me promise not to hit the Magic Kingdom without him. So we decided to venture to the Animal Kingdom instead.

As we drove through the gates that said "Welcome to Disney World" I was so excited to be sharing the moment with my little man. I turned around to tell him how exciting it was and get a smile out of him, and instead, he gave me a confused look and projectile vomited all over himself. Truly a moment I will remember forever. His first disney experience and he gets sick. (Thankfully it wasn't a bug or anything...just a result of my mom deciding half and half mixed with skim milk would equal whole milk for a baby - um...wrong). After we got him all cleaned up, he was feeling great and we were on our way.

We headed first to a character breakfast inside the park. My sister Brenda - who is the queen of all things Disney World - came with us with 2 of her 3 boys.


He really didn't like the characters at all...and I really can't blame him. They are kind of scary.

Meeting Mickey for the first time

Sheer terror. Love it!

Hanging out on a bench with his cousin Ashton...after having to leave "It's a Bug's Life 3D" due to again...sheer terror.

Passed out in the stroller from a busy morning.


Wrapping up the afternoon with tea at the Grand Floridian. He loved the strawberries and cream and made a HUGE mess...but he loved every second of it.

It was a great trip and I so look forward to future jaunts to disney. In January 2011 we will be at a work convention down there, so I'm sure that will be our first full family experience at the parks. I'm ready to start planning now! But...sigh...disney won't let me book anything this far in advance. But I'm planning in my head already!

Oh...and this trip was Grayson's 8th round trip flying and 16th flight. The kid is a pro at going through security!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Big 3-0

Today I leave my 20's behind and all the fond (and not so fond memories) of it.

I say good bye to:

-The decade in which I married my wonderful husband
-The decade in which I welcomed my beautiful son
-The decade in which I said goodbye to three precious babies
-The decade in which I saw so much personal and spiritual growth as a result
-A wrinkle free face
-A working metabolism
-A body unaffected by gravity

And I say hello to:
-A new decade to welcome new babies (I prayerfully hope)
-The decade in which I will celebrate 7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16 years of marriage to -my amazing man
-The decade in which I will *gasp* send my baby to school
-The decade in which I will at some point "retire" from work to be a full time mommy for a bit
-The decade of my *ahem..cough, cough* "peak" (or so people say)
-A time for making friendships stronger...and expanding my horizons with new ones
-Embracing every day of life...cause it's almost 1/2 way over at this point. Scary!

I've got to say, I feel very odd about the whole thing. I thought it wouldn't phase me but it is really making me contemplate life, what I've done, what i HAVEN'T done and more.

Any advice from any of you out there? Did you have a tough time with 30? How did you get through it?

Friday, July 10, 2009

National Dress Like a Cow Day!

I've been a new kick lately. I am a coupon cutting, spreadsheet building, budget queen these days. Always looking for a good deal, searching the internet for discount codes, free stuff and more.

Today is a great day because all Chick-fil-a's across the country are giving away free meals if you dress like a cow!!! Sounds silly, I know. But hey - it's a free meal from a great place! Today I'm wearing all black (as is Grayson) and at lunch time I will apply the white stickers I've cut out into cow shapes all over us, and head to the mall. I'll be sure to get a pic or 2 and post.

If you want to partake in the fun, but haven't done any advance planning, not to worry. Just print out one of these cow masks and wear it to a chickfila - and you'll get a free entree!

http://www.leehansen.com/printables/masks/cow-mask.htm

http://www.freeprintablecoloringpages.net/showcover/Circus_And_Carnival/Cow_Mask


For more details on the cow day click here

Saturday, June 20, 2009

My Mother's Day

Since tomorrow is Father's Day...I thought I'd finally write my Mother's Day post. ha!

Last mother's day, Grayson was still in my belly. So...it was kinda my first, but kinda my not. He arrived just 2 weeks later.

I was looking forward to the first time that I could celebrate my own motherhood on Mother's Day. For years it had been such a bad day for me as I longed for a baby of my own...I know so many of you have been there, and are still there.

At church, I got to sing a song about my little man called "Miracle". It was so perfect because that's what he is to us. Our little miracle that we waited for and prayed for and God gave us in His perfect timing. The biggest goal I had was to make it through the song without crying. We have 3 services so each time I made it through 1, I breathed a sigh of relief, and hoped the next service would be tear free as well. At the 3rd service, my mom decided to bring Grayson in to see me sing. So there I am on the stage and there he is smiling at me from the front row. I SO almost lost it there, but somehow managed to hold it together. At the end of the song there was an instrumental interlude and I went down and brought him back up on stage for me for the end. It was one of the sweetest moments of my life as I got to sing to my little guy. I must say...even though I made it through without crying, there were many non-dry eyes in the house. My church is awesome and they know our story and are so happy for our little miracle as well.

The rest of the day was spent hanging with David's family for a great lunch, and we took lots of pics to mark the occasion. After lunch my mom offered to watch Grayson so that we could see a movie. So we dropped him by at her house, then decided a nap sounded like a better use of the babysitting services. Ha! I must say that it was just about the best nap I've ever had though!

My husband also got me an amazing mother's day gift to commemorate our angel babies. I had been searching for a long time for the perfect piece of jewelry to remember them by, but often find all the birthstone stuff ugly or cheesy. I found these one day online and they were perfect. They fit my simple style for jewelry and can be added to should we ever experience another loss. (A morbid thought, I know, but I can't help but think practically about our future baby-making ventures). I got the silver rings with birthstones for October, June and December, marking the 3 due dates. I wear them every day now and they remind me of where we've been and make me even more thankful for what we have now in Grayson.

Here are some pics from the day. It was a great one and I look forward to many more.

Family Pic

Our future golfer

Grayson and his cousin Brady who is 9 months older - he is truly our "little" man!

Mommy & Grayson

My gift - thanks to my awesome husband

Singing to my miracle

MIRACLE

Lyrics: Linda Thompson
Music: Stephen Dorff

You're my life's one miracle
Everything I've done that's good
And you break my heart with tenderness
And I confess it's true
I never knew a love like this 'til you

You're the reason I was born
Now I finally know for sure
And I'm overwhelmed with happiness
So blessed to hold you close
The one that I love most
Though the future has so much for you in store
Who could ever love you more

The nearest thing to heaven
You're my angel from above
Only God creates such perfect love

When you smile AT me I cry
And to save your life I'd die
With a romance that is pure in heart
You are my dearest part
Whatever it requires
I live for your desires
Forget my own, your needs will come before
Who could ever love you more

There is nothing you could ever do
To make me stop loving you
And every breath I take
Is always for your sake
You sleep inside my dreams
And know for sure
Who could ever love you more


You can see the video of the song here. Disclaimer: I am definitely no Celine Dion but it sure was fun to sing to my baby from my heart.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

I'm an Aunt again!

I am so excited to introduce Tiernan Michael Z to you - my most recent and probably last ever - nephew. He was born at 4:13 a.m. Saturday morning and has red hair. I LOVE him and he sure makes me have the baby itch. Pray for him as he is in the NICU right now for a few days. He's having some blood sugar issues and has a chance of infection so he's on some antibiotics.



My sisters, as well as David's brother all say that their done popping out the kiddos. So now it's up to us to continue keeping the grandkids coming for our parents. A task that we are definitely up for.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Miracle Times Two

At the beginning of this journey to our little G-man, I had one friend who helped me weather the storm. She's been with me through all the ups and downs, and I in turn have loved being there for her during her journey. We've laughed together, cried together and consumed many a bottle of wine...and dump cakes...together. She and her Grumps tried for 6 years before having a successful pregnancy and have finally received their 2 precious miracles. I'm so excited for my friend Sunny and her beautiful babies - a boy and girl, born on June 8th just before 4 a.m. The middle of the night phone call I received that her water had broken was one of the most joyous moments of my life...after my own water breaking of course.

Head on over to Sunny's blog to wish her congrats. I don't think she's posted anything yet, but I'm sure it's coming soon. She was on hospital bedrest for almost 6 weeks before delivery, so she's recovering and will be back in the swing of things soon. For now, just take my word for it. Her babies are absolutely beautiful and are true miracles!

We often joke, wondering if we each didn't have all these crap times in our life, if we'd still be friends. Our friendship has always centered around being there for each other in the tough times. I am so looking forward to a change of pace and being able to share all the joys and good things in life together. I love you Sunny! You are going to be one amazing mama!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Grayson Turns 1

I am now a mom to a 1 year old boy. No longer an infant...he's now creeping on to that toddler phase. So hard to believe!

I have been a bad, bad blogger over the past year. I just checked and I only posted 21 times in Grayson's 1st year of life. And most of those were just picture posts, nothing really too them. My goal is to be better in year 2. I want to do a better job of chronicling this whole crazy ride of motherhood.

I have so many posts in my head, things I want to share and say. I'll try my best to get those out over the coming weeks. For now, here's some info on the big, bad b'day party.

Theme: Cookie Monster

Who was invited: All the family in the area, plus the babysitter (cause she's family too since she's here every Friday night). There were 26 people packed into my house.Thankfully it was a nice day and we could use the deck too.

Menu: Kept things simple with sandwiches (chicken salad, ham salad and tomato/basil/mozarella), pasta salada, fruit salad, spinach dip, bags of chips. Everything was bought from the store so I just had to set it all out and worry about presentation.

The Cake(s): I decided to go with cupcakes and found a great recipe here. They were easy...just time consuming. I dyed the frosting with blue food coloring, cause I wanted his face to be as blue as possible when he was all done. I displayed the cupcakes on this stand from William.s S.onoma.

I also got a cookie cake from Mrs. Fi.elds which was a huge hit. And it was still in theme...which was nice.

The decorations: I found stuff online and at our party city, all with this theme. Couldn't find anything that was solely cookie monster, so had to settle for the whole sesame street gang.

The goodie bags: Everyone went home with a bag with some chips ahoy cookies, as well as a thank you note from Grayson and a pic from his 1 year pic.ture people shoot the day before.

Since his b'day was on a Sunday, he also had goodie bags for all his little friends in the church nursery. Inside were some of his favorite things, mum-mums, apple crisps and a bibster.

The loot: Man did the little man score some seriously good stuff for his b'day! I was thinking half of it would be stuff he'd never play with, but it's all great stuff. Some of his goodies were:
Advice: Thanks to Katie for the advice that she'd heard about not stressing if the birthday boy needs to nap. He actually missed half the party as he napped upstairs despite all the noise. We finally woke him up towards the end when it was time for cake and presents. It would've just been mean and not fun for anyone if he was up and grouchy. The 1st bday is about the only one that the guest of honor can sleep through without it being rude. So my advice - let the honoree nap and miss everything except the cake and presents. Cause that's all that really matters for the photo opps.

Here are some pics of the big event, plus his formal shots from pic.ture people:

The Invitation - thanks to Amber for this one!

Look who's 1!

"G" for Grayson!



mmmmm. cake.

the cupcakes


enjoying his new ride

Grayson, my mom, David's mom and me

he wasn't so excited about taking this family pic

or this one either

Our happy little man. Happy birthday Grayson!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Thanks Uncle Mike!

In florida for a few days with the fam for some r&r. Thanks to Uncle Mike for these great pics of my little man.









Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Birthday Planning

My baby boy turned 10 months old yesterday. AH! He's crawling, standing and all that good stuff and I'm pretty sure walking will be coming pretty soon. It's an easier transition for the little guys that don't have as much weight and height to hold up like my G man.

The weirdest thing to think about right now is that it's time to start planning his 1st birthday party. So surreal. I still have moments where I just can't believe that I'm a mom....let alone the mom of a 1 year old.

I do love to plan events. I'm 100 percent sure of my calling to church ministry, but given another choice, I would go into event planning and public relations. So planning his big par-tay will be fun. I already have a list of some elements I don't want to forget and purchased some cute, personalized 1st birthday stuff a while back.

Does anyone out there have any fun 1st birthday tips for me as I get planning? A photo op I have to be sure to get? A fun game? Party favor?

Saturday, March 7, 2009

9 Months Old

Hard to believe he's 9 months old already. That shortened month of February really flew by too quick!

Here are some shots from his photo shoot today:




Sunday, January 25, 2009

Oh How Time flies

I hadn't full grasped how long it had been since I blogged until Katie commented wondering where I was and if I was alright. (Thanks Katie...I feel loved :-) ) I can't believe my last post was November 13th. Bad, bad blogger. I've thought about posting many times, but just haven't gotten around to it. I read all of yours, but just have been silent on my end.

So here's an update.

Grayson will be 8 months at the end of this week. Wow! I seriously can't believe this. The other thing I cannot believe is that I'm still holding on to almost 10 pounds of baby weight. They have always said the whole "9 months on, 9 months off" thing, but I never believed it would be me. Now at this point, it looks like I won't even hit that. Very frustrating, but also totally all my fault at this point. I'm just not trying hard enough. I'm back in all my clothes, and pre preggers size, but it all fits totally different. Sigh. I really need to get crackin on some body changes.

Grayson is my little peanut. He stays under the 10th percentile is everything pretty consistently. But he's so precious! I love playing with him and everything about him. I am still breastfeeding, an accomplishment I never thought I would achieve back at the beginning when I thought my nipples were going to fall off and I felt like I had a baby permanently attached to my boob. There came a point where it just got so easy, and simpler than the bottle though and I pushed through. Now it's a breeze, and as long as he doesn't give me up, I dont' see us having too much of a problem with getting through the whole year which was my original goal.

Luckily he does switch well between bottle and boob though. I even just this week left him for the first time and went to san diego with the husband for 4 nights and 5 days. I had been working like a mad woman over the past few months to pump up a storm and have enough milk in the freezer for him to have while I was away. I rose to the challenge and had more than was needed for my mom while I was away. He had a great time and didn't even realize I was gone. Me....well, I partied like a rock star and was in heaven for 2 days. Then....oh how it sucked and I missed him so bad! I still had a good time but it was ridiculous how much I missed him and kissing his sweet little cheeks.

I could go on and on about Grayson and what he's up to, but for now I'll just close this post, and promise to be better and post more often. This video was taken about 2 weeks ago when he was laughing up a storm at my mom. It's just way too cute, and i must admit I watched it like 20 times a day while I was away. So enjoy. :)