Thursday, March 29, 2012

Happy birthday Josh and random thoughts

Warning: This is going to be a random post...with odds and ends and this and that....



This was taken right before Thanksgiving 2011.

First of all a special Happy birthday to my little brother Josh. He is a great basketball player and although ornery at times, he is a great little brother! So HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRO!!! (He said he wanted the baby to come on his birthday, but I don't think that is going to happen...:) )


Yesterday was not a good day.
  • I was depressed, didn't feel all that great, tired of being pregnant.
  • Our car broke down yesterday (we only have 1) as we were getting ready to take Rebecca to school. Bill had drove it that morning to work but it wouldn't start. Thank Heavens for friends that work at the school (which is literally 5 minutes away) and was able to come and get Rebecca for me and to bring her home, for AAA who were able to tow the car, for Firestone Auto Care who fixed it in less than 3 hours. $300 and a new starter later the car seems to be fine. I hate spending that kind of money, but at least we had it.
  • As Bill walked down to get the car, Jacob got up from his nap and decided to smear poop on his face from his diaper, JUST as my friend brought Rebecca home....
  • It was JUST a long day yesterday
I am still unsure as to what is going to happen with my kiddos while I am in the hospital. I thought my parents were going to watch them, but my Mom has seemed like she is mad at me for some unknown reason lately and she is so busy chauffeuring my brother and sister to their sports stuff. I have co-workers at work who have volunteered but I hate to impose on them. I don't know.

I am hoping to go to Walmart today to get Easter basket stuff, because I don't think that I will feel like it next week after my c-section and I just want it to be ready to go.

Jacob keeps twisting his hair and getting knots in it. Anyone have any suggestions on how to stop him from doing it?

Sorry this is rambling....that is just how I am today.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Memories


This is how I have been feeling about this pregnancy the last few weeks. I am trying to savor each moment!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Every pregnancy is different



I have been pregnant 5 times.

September 2005 I had a miscarriage at 8 weeks.

November 28, 2006 my beautiful daughter was born after I had to be induced at 37 weeks.

September 21, 2008 I suffered a stillbirth, when our son Travis was born into Heaven at 20 weeks.

October 11, 2009 I gave birth via emergency c-section to our handsome son at 37 weeks.

And now I am on pregnancy #5.

Each pregnancy has been completely different. You would think that I had experienced a lot of different symptoms considering the # of pregnancies that I have had. But this pregnancy has brought about a bunch of symptoms that I have NEVER experienced before while pregnant.

During this pregnancy, I have experienced carpal tunnel symptoms. My hands and fingers often go numb overnight and hurt. The last couple of days, the soreness has also affected my arms. There are times during the day that my fingertips are numb. But most of the time this only occurs at night.

During this pregnancy, I had spotting early on. Many pregnant women experience spotting at some point during their pregnancy and most of this is normal. I had spotting early on, enough to think that I was having a miscarriage. I was diagnosed with a threatened miscarriage and was put on bed rest for a few days until the bleeding got better.

During this pregnancy, I have been on modified bed rest. I was never on bed rest with the other pregnancies. Modified bed rest is HARD! Especially when you are used to doing things your way when you want to do them, when you are used to being in charge and being housewife. It has been hard to give up control--at work, at home and just in general. I know that it is for the best, but it has been hard!

During this pregnancy I have tried to savor each moment. I savored being pregnant the other times, but this time it is even more special because this is the last time I am going to be pregnant. I have decided, along with my hubby, to have my tubes tied during my c-section. I cannot go through this again for various reasons. I don't feel that I can health wise go through this; it is recommended to not to have more than 2 c-sections; I am at a higher risk of miscarriage and stillbirth as I am prone to fibroids in the uterus.

Each pregnancy has been unique. Each pregnancy has offered it's own challenges. And each pregnancy has NOT been taken for granted. These are just some of the things that I have learned along the way.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Cutting back on tv time

I don't know if it is because I am nesting, or trying to be a good mom, or just feeling guilty about the amount of TV that my kiddos have been watching; but we have started cutting back on the amount of TV that Rebecca and Jacob watch.

I realized that they were watching upwards of 5+ hours of cartoons a day! I would turn the TV on right after breakfast (around 9:30am), cartoons would be on until lunch time (around 11:30). Then after Rebecca went to school, Jacob would watch another hour or so before his nap. Then after dinner, cartoons would be back on until around 9pm. That is A LOT of TV watching! 

We have tried in the past to limit their watching, but it hasn't worked and it was just easier to have the TV on. Alot of times I would justify that I had it on just for background noise. Well I would MUCH rather hear my kids playing than some cartoon in the background and my kids sitting like logs watching TV. However, over the last week, I just haven't turned the TV on in the morning. After breakfast the kids play, color, run around like crazy kids. And you know what....they seem more alive and happy! Most days the TV stays off until after Jacob is down for his nap and Rebecca is at school, then Bill might turn it on to watch a show of his on the DVR.

Now I am not taking the TV away completely. I am still turning cartoons on for the kids in the evening for about an hour. They each get to watch 1 half hour show. Sometimes we broke that rule, like when the Lalaloopsy movie was on the other night and it was 1.5 hours long. I let Rebecca watch it. Bill and I are still watching TV. Most of the time when the kids are up and we want to watch TV, it is usually on a sporting event (March Madness anyone?) or a cooking show. And the majority of the time the kids are ignoring the TV during those times and playing.

What I have found, is that the kids are happier. They are more active. They are becoming more independent and interested in other things (Rebecca has recently discovered she LOVES to put together puzzles, and Jacob LOVES to color on his art easel with crayons and chalk. They also love just running around and being silly. It is a happy sound for this Mommy!

And I have learned, the kids don't seem to miss the TV. Does this look like kiddos missing out on watching TV?
Coloring outside enjoying the beautiful weather---NOT watching TV!

Do you limit the amount of TV your kids watch? Why or why not?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sunday Night Chit Chat

Time for another edition of Sunday Night Chit-Chat, hosted by http://halfdozendaily.typepad.com/my-half-dozen-daily/.



Enjoying the warm weather this past week by eating dinner outside!
 WHAT ARE YOU.......

Reading?
I haven't started a new book since I finished up  The Rose of Winslow Street. I have 4 in line to read for reviews though so hopefully will be able to start one this week.

Watching?
Not watching anything. Kids are watching Dora the Explorer. Am DVRing Frozen Planet on Discovery Channel  to watch later.








Listening to?
My kiddos running around being crazy!

Cooking/Baking?
Last night I made chicken enchiladas (so yummy!). Tonight, dinner was quick and easy as the whole family took a nap this afternoon and woke up right before it was dinner time (oops!).
Happy you accomplished this week?
I have gotten a lot of my to do list done for when the baby comes. Put together the new dresser for the boys clothes. Put all baby clothes away in the dresser. Put together bassinnett and it is now in our room waiting for the baby!
Looking forward to next week?
Hearing my baby's heartbeat during my non-stress tests. I will have my last 2 before my scheduled c-section.  Hopefully relaxing a little.

Thankful for today?
Thankful for my beautiful children and my handsome husband. Thankful that I have had energy the last couple days and that I have gotten some cleaning and things done before the baby comes. Thankful that I can see the light at the end of the pregnancy tunnel.
What about you? To play along, visit http://halfdozendaily.typepad.com/my-half-dozen-daily/

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Happy birthday Mom!

Today is my Mom's 51st birthday! She is an amazing woman who is always on the go and thrives with being busy. She is mom to 4. Her and my dad have been married 31 years. She is grandma to 5 (almost 6!). She is Nanny to the grandkids! She has had a tough last month, being diagnosed with bladder cancer and having to have surgery and now chemo. She is one tough lady though! And I love her very much!


Mom and Dad, Christmas 2011

Happy Birthday Mom!! 

Friday, March 23, 2012

Save the Date!

Thursday I went to have another growth ultrasound. According to the u/s tech, the baby is weighing a little over 8 and 1/2 pounds already! (Average for 36 weeks is 6 pounds).

Today, I went to see my doctor for my official 36 week checkup. She was not concerned about the baby's weight since I am having a repeat c-section. She also wasn't concerned because there seems to be plenty of amniotic fluid around the baby. She WAS concerned that I have noticed him moving less the last couple of days. So I am to do mandatory kick counts and if I don't get 10 kicks in 2 hours then I am to go to labor and delivery.

I also had another non-stress test today...and baby cooperated. I feel like it was not a real one though since they had me drink cranberry apple juice before and the sugar made him move! When I don't drink juice right before it takes them forever to get the results they are looking for. So I am not sure what to think about this.

In other news, I have a definite END date in site for this pregnancy. Today while I was at the doctor, I signed the consent form for the hospital to do my c-section. If I make it to that date, my c-section is scheduled for Monday April 2, when I am 38 weeks along. Dear Hubby thinks that I will have the baby before then. I don't know. I am just hoping for a healthy baby and a good delivery experience, unlike my last c-section.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Book review: The Rose of Winslow Street


THE ROSE OF WINSLOW STREET by ELIZABETH CAMDEN

From the back cover:

In the small town of Colden, Massachusetts, Libby Sawyer leads a quiet, predictable life. Yet beneath the surface, she is haunted by a secret.

Newly arrived on American shores, Michael Dobrescu is far from predictable, and his arrival in Colden is anything but quiet. Michael's shocking claim to be the rightful owner of Libby's father's house immediately alienates him from the appalled citizens of Colden.

Despite her own outrage, Libby is unwittingly fascinated by this enigmatic man who seems equally intrigued by her. As the court's decision about the house looms, and the layers of mystery surrounding Michael's past are unveiled, Libby's loyalties are tested in ways she never imagined.

My thoughts:

This is the first novel I have read by Elizabeth Camden. There are many unique and interesting plot lines in the book that allowed me to stay engaged in the story line. I felt that the first part of the plot could have been written in a clearer way, however once I got past the first few chapters things fell into place and I was able to understand what was going on and how the pieces fit together. That being said, the plot at times moved rather slowly and although seemingly important left the reader to wander what was going on and where this all was leading. Towards the middle of the book, the plot began to move much quicker and allowed the reader to see the ending mark. Personally I felt that there was a lack of balance between the first half of the book and the second half of the book, where there was a greater Christian influence in the story line that seemed to appear out of nowhere, especially in particular with one character. I felt that there should have been a better balance.

This was also the case with the character development. In the first few chapters there are so many secrets and oddities surrounding most of the characters that you really did not get a chance to embrace or even feel like you knew the characters. However, once some of the secrets and oddities were explained you felt like you had a kinship with some of the characters. I did not feel this kinship with all the characters, even though  some of them seemed to have a big part in the plot later in the story. There was a definite dividing line between the character development of the characters of Libby, Michael, and to some extent Mirela. However the other characters, such as Professor Sawyer, Regina and Jasper lacked development that I felt was missing in the story.

Although there was a lack of balance in both plot and character development, as a whole The Rose of Winslow Street was a good read. It turned out to be a good story with romance, intrigue and mystery in a time gone by. Personally I would rate it 4 stars out of 5.


Disclaimer: I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for a review. I was under no obligation to write a positive or a negative review.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Welcome Spring (well welcome officially!)


Today is the first OFFICIAL day of Spring! I say that it is the first official day because it has felt like spring for the past week or so here! Today the temperature is 84 degrees right now! The normal high this time of year is 58 degrees! It is HOT!!!!

Don't get me wrong. I love that it is sunny and warm and not snowy and cold.....but, that meant that I have had to scrounge around to find shorts for my kiddos and I am wearing a skirt today because I have no maternity shorts that fit!! Thankfully I have a couple maternity tanks that do fit so that helps. I need to do an inventory of Jacob and Rebecca's summer clothes to see what I need to buy. Looking through them briefly, I think I will just need to get Jacob a few shirts and a couple summer pjs. Rebecca, I think will need much more as she only has a couple pairs of shorts that still fit her, 1 tank top, and only 1 summer nightgown.

In other news, I have been getting antsy and wanting to get out of the house. This modified bed rest is driving me nuts! I am thinking that I might convince Bill to take me to the dollar store tomorrow or somewhere just to get out of the house. We shall see.....

How is the weather where you are? Are you experiencing summer like spring weather?

Monday, March 19, 2012

36 weeks pregnancy update

Today I am 36 weeks along....it has been a slow process, but slowly but surely I am getting there.

I am still having Non-stress tests (NSTs) twice a week. This past week, the first NST I had went really fast. They got the results they wanted in 10 minutes. On Friday, during my second NST of the week, it took them over an hour to get the results they wanted. The baby was asleep and not moving the way they wanted him to do.

Other than that, I am still on modified bed rest. The only place I am allowed to go is to the doctors office or to the hospital for the NSTs. I haven't had much energy this past week. Not sleeping well either. Last night I DID sleep okay. I only woke 3 times.

On another note, I saw the doctor on Friday and we are thinking that if I go that far, that I will have my c-section on April 2. So potentially in 2 weeks from today!! I can't wait to meet this little man and to begin our new normal as a family!!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Time for another edition of Sunday Night Chit-Chat, hosted by Carla at My 1/2 Dozen Daily

I love the colors in this picture! Reminds me of spring and just feeling good!

Reading?

This past week I finished up The Scent of Cherry Blossoms. (Look for the review here.) Haven't started a new book yet.

Watching?

Frozen Planet is starting tonight on Discovery Channel. I am DVRing it. I loved the previous specials that they have done...Planet Earth being my favorite. I LOVE these types of documentaries.

Listening to?
The tv is on in the background.

Cooking/Baking?
Honestly I have been pretty lazy, very pregnant and just not feeling like cooking or baking. I keep thinking that I want to make some strawberry cookies but I just don't have the energy.

Happy you accomplished this week?

I got through my NSTs. They have a target date for my c-section! YAY! (More on that later)

Looking forward to next week?
Hearing my baby's heartbeat during my non-stress tests. If I haven't gone into labor, then I have an ultrasound on Thursday to see the little boy again before birth. Hopefully relaxing a little.

Thankful for today?
Thankful for my beautiful children and caring husband! Thankful for the beautiful spring like weather we have had the last week or so!

Book Review: The Scent of Cherry Blossoms


From the back cover:

Annie Martin loves the Plain ways of her Old Order Mennonite people, like those revered by her beloved grandfather. Retreating from a contentious relationship with her mother, Annie goes to live with her Daadi Moses in Apple Ridge.

But as spring moves into Pennsylvania and Annie spends time among the cherry trees with the handsome Aden Zook, she wishes she could forget how deeply the lines between the Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonite are drawn.

Can Annie and Aden find a place for their love to bloom in the midst of the brewing storm?

My thoughts:

I have read many of Cindy Woodsmall's previous books and I was really looking forward to reading this one. She USUALLY has great character formation both with the main characters and with the secondary ones. And there are usually overlapping plot lines that make the reading very interesting.

I was disappointed in this book. While good, it was NOT one of Woodsmall's better books. The character developments seemed shallow to me and there was really no great plot. In fact I found that the plot was rather predictable and not very exciting. I would have preferred a plot that would have spent more time on the relationship between Aden and his brother Roman, and/or the relationship between Annie's grandfather and Aden's parents. I found that Woodsmall focusing solely on Annie and Aden's relationship made the book seem simplistic.

That being said, it was a good read. If I had not read any of Woodsmall's other books, then I would have probably liked this one much more. It was a good story. Just lacked the meatiness that I have come to expect from Woodsmall.

DISCLAIMER: I was provided a FREE copy of this book by Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Blogging for Books program. All opinions are my own. I did not have to write a positive review.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Monday, March 12, 2012

35 weeks and to dos and no menu plan?


Today I am 35 weeks pregnant. This was the goal for us to get too. After this date, my OB/GYN said that she would have no problem delivering if my blood pressure got out of control or I developed full blown pre-eclampsia. I have noticed the last couple of days that my blood pressure has been high in the morning and even higher in the evening. More so than it had been. Maybe that means it is getting close to the time to have the baby???

I am trying to get some things set up for when I do have the baby. Some of these things are reflected in my to do list for this week....


My to do list: (You will notice a few things from last week's list...)
  • 2 NSTs (Non-Stress tests) (These will be ongoing until I have the baby)
  • Update phone numbers on hubby's cell phone for when I am in the hospital
  • Get hubby to put together dresser and crib in the boys' room
  • Get bassinet set up in our bedroom
  • Clean both bathrooms
  • File bills
  • Get folder ready for Rebecca's Kindergarten screening
  • Finish laundry (Fold, put away)
I think that is sufficient. It will be great if I can get it all done, but I don't know.....


MENU PLAN

This week I am NOT doing a menu plan. I have found the last couple of weeks that I have no desire to follow a menu plan, even an easy one. I am just going to go by the seat of my pants....I usually don't know what I want until it is almost time for dinner. And we have a lot of easy meals that I can make so it should work out well. I hope. Wish me luck.

Do you have any plans for this week? 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Spring Forward

Just a reminder that Daylight Savings Time is starting!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pregnancy week 34.4 update and update on Mom's bladder cancer


So today I went in for my 2nd NST (Non-stress test) this week. I have noticed in the last couple days that I didn't think I had been feeling baby boy move very much. Well he actually cooperated today and did BEAUTIFULLY on the test! That is good news. The nurse suggested that I do kick counts twice a day so I will be incorporating that into our routine. I think I have been really busy the last 2 days and maybe that is why I haven't noticed him moving. My blood pressure was still high---147/77...so still need to watch that. On Monday I will be 35 weeks!

In other GOOD NEWS, my mom went to the doctor this morning for her follow up for her bladder cancer surgery last week. The good news is that the tumors were non-invasive. The bad news is that the cancer cells were very fast growing and aggressive. So she will have to do chemo once a week for the next 6 weeks. Her doctor thinks that will take care of it. She also has to be checked every 3 months for the foreseeable future as bladder cancer has a high recurrence rate! But we will take it. Thank God she went and got checked in the first place!!

So health wise it has been a GOOD NEWS kind of day! Anyone else have any good news to share?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

To do list update and new to dos


On Monday, I wrote a to do list for the week. I thought I would update it today....

My to do list:

Wash the bassinet lining
Take basket of stuff from bedroom downstairs and put stuff away
Put washed laundry away
Put bathrobe in hospital bag
Collect Sports Illustrateds for my brother
Do at least 3 blog posts---bladder cancer, and pregnancy update
24 hour test for doctor
2 Non-stress tests (I have done 1, still 1 more to go tomorrow)
Call Dr. for medicine refill
update phone numbers on cell phones for when I am in the hospital (done mine, need to do hubby's)
Clean off top of computer armoire
Pay bills
Mail off city tax stuff and Direct Loan stuff
Mail off books to Amazon for credit


Not too bad! I have had some extra burst of energy the last couple of days...(Nesting???) so there are more things I would like to add that I would like to get done before next Monday....so adding to my list are:

Enter sign ins, sign outs on computer for work
Finish laundry (or at least nag hubby to finish it since I am not supposed to carry things up and down steps)
File bills
Get hubby to put dresser and crib together in boys' room
Put baby clothes and stuff away
Get bassinet set up in our bedroom
Clean both bathrooms

I think that should keep me busy, but with still time to rest since I am supposed to be resting as much as possible!

How are you doing on being productive this week??

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Bladder Cancer


It has been an emotional couple of weeks. 2 weeks ago, my mother was diagnosed with bladder cancer. This past Thursday, she had surgery to remove 8 tumors from her bladder. We have to wait and see what the pathology reports say to see what the next step is.

Now my mother is almost 51 years old. She used to smoke. She is white. These are 3 of the main causes of bladder cancer. The main cause being that she used to be a smoker.

According to Webmd.com:

Bladder cancer is the rapid, uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the lining of the bladder, the part of the urinary tract that serves as a collection pouch for urine. The most common symptom of bladder cancer is blood in the urine (hematuria), and other symptoms include pain during urination and frequent urination.
The cause of bladder cancer is not known. But it is more likely to develop in smokers than in nonsmokers. Men are more likely than women to develop bladder cancer.
Treatment depends on the stage of the cancer. Treatment may include surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, or radiation therapy.

I am not sure what to think. I am scared that they didn't catch this early enough. I am scared of what is to come. I am hoping for the best. Right now my mom and dad are trying to keep things normal for my little brother (age 11) and my little sister (age 15).

If you could send thoughts and prayers to my mom please do so!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Menu Plan and To-do list for the week

Hello again Monday! One more Monday closer to meeting the new baby! I am officially 34 weeks today! I will admit that I am getting impatient but trying to be good.

Time to get one with our menu plan and to do's for this week.

This week's menu choices include:

Lasagna
Spaghetti and meatballs and garlic toast
Chicken enchiladas
Hot dogs and veggies
Ham and cheese, and pepperoni and cheese crescent rollups and pasta salad
Grilled cheese and veggies
???? Leftovers maybe


My to do list:

Wash the bassinet lining
Take basket of stuff from bedroom downstairs and put stuff away
Put washed laundry away
Put bathrobe in hospital bag
Collect Sports Illustrateds for my brother
Do at least 3 blog posts---bladder cancer, and pregnancy update
24 hour test for doctor
2 Non-stress tests
Call Dr. for medicine refill
update phone numbers on cell phones for when I am in the hospital
Clean off top of computer armoire
Pay bills
Mail off city tax stuff and Direct Loan stuff
Mail off books to Amazon for credit

I think that it is....If I get most of this stuff done I will be happy.

How about you? What is on your menu plan and/or to do lists this week??

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sunday Night Chit-Chat...

Time for another edition of Sunday Night Chit-Chat, hosted by http://halfdozendaily.typepad.com/my-half-dozen-daily/



A couple weeks ago I was surprised at work with a baby shower from my coworkers and the kids we work with. This is my goodies that I received. I am truly blessed!

Reading?
This past week I finished up Beauty for Ashes. Haven't started a new book yet.

Watching?
Right now the TV is on basketball for the background noise. Not really watching anything.

Listening to?
Traffic outside and the basketball game.

Cooking/Baking?
Today I made a whole chicken in the crockpot, homemade mashed potatoes, and asparagus for dinner!

Happy you accomplished this week?
I have gotten a lot of my to do list done for when the baby comes. Started packing my hospital bag, etc.

Looking forward to next week?
Hearing my baby's heartbeat during my non-stress tests. Hopefully relaxing a little.

Thankful for today?
Thankful for my hubby who has stepped it up since I have been on bed rest. Thankful for my caring friend who also happens to be my boss who has been so supportive throughout all of this!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

So proud of my daughter...

This week has been CRAZY...I will explain more on that later, but I wanted to take a moment to say how proud I am of my daughter. She is in Pre-Kindergarten. We got her progress report this week and without exception she is exceeding state standards on everything (except for phone number and address, which is a Kindergarten standard).


I am such a proud mommy! I love her so much!


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Life Promises for Couples



Life Promises for Couples by Gary Chapman is a great devotional book for married couples. Brought to you by the author of The Five Love Languages, this is a great book to continue your journey to have a strong and secure marriage. The book is a compilation of Scripture passages and the author's thoughts and observations of these scriptures and how they pertain to the couple's relationships. The format of the book allows you to read one or more sections each day (each section is 2 pages). I enjoyed reading one or two sections a night before bed and thinking about them and how they related to my own marriage. You also do not have to read this book straight through; there is a Scripture index included in the book that would allow you to look up a certain passage.

This is a great book for married couples, engaged couples, both couples young and old. The book is very nicely presented and would make a great wedding gift or anniversary gift!

Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of this book free of charge from the Tyndale Blog network. All opinions expressed are my own.