Mar 12, 2012

4 Years Ago . . .

This is from his 3rd Birthday Party

Today is G’s birthday.  In light of this special day I’m going to share his birth story with you.

It was 3:00 AM on March 12, 2008 and my water broke.  My worst fear had come true, I went into labor and my husband, Brent, was at work.  At the time he worked the 12-4 shift at FedEx along with his 8-5 day job (No, that’s not a typo those are the correct times.  He got very little sleep!).

I immediately reached for the phone and called him.  He didn’t answer . . . GREAT!  Now what am I supposed to do?  I tried to stay calm, but my mind was racing. 

Next, I called my friend.  We had already arranged for her to watch B when the baby came.  When we had the discussion I didn’t think I would have to call her at 3:00 AM.  I felt so badly for calling and waking her up. 

Without hesitation she came to get B and offered to take me to the hospital.  In between the time that she and I spoke and when she arrived at the our house I was able to talk with Brent and he was on his way home.

Brent and I drove to the hospital.  They checked us in and there I sat . . . waiting.  When I had B my water broke at 7:00 and he was born at 11:21.  By the time I got to the hospital I was dilated to 7 centimeters.  Seeing as how this was my second baby I thought things would go more quickly . . . I was WRONG!

A few interesting events occurred while we waited for G to make his appearance.  First of all, we had the pleasure of meeting the Attending doctor from the hospital.    I’m not really comfortable with male doctors when it comes to this birthing stuff, so he made me SUPER nervous!  He came in asked a few general questions and appeared to be writing my statements down.  He came across one question that he didn’t or maybe couldn’t ask aloud.  He pointed to the question and said “Have you ever had this?”  While he was doing this he gave Brent an odd stare.   After answering the remainder of the questions he tried a little small talk by asking who Brent was.  I explained that he was my husband.  After he left Brent could hardly wait to ask what the question was.  I told him it asked if I had ever had Herpes.  Brent found this to be the highlight of the day and still laughs hysterically about it when reminiscing!

It is standard procedure to get an IV in the early stages of labor.  The first time I ever had an IV was when I had B.  At that time I was extremely nervous about getting the IV.  This time I knew what to expect so I was more relaxed about the situation.  The nurse who was giving me the IV was new.  She tried 3 times and was unsuccessful.  Another nurse had to do the IV.  I was left with several bruises on my arm and it was pretty sore.

G was not actually due until April 3.  Earlier in the week I had the Group B Strep test (This test indicates weather the mother is a carrier of bacteria that can be passed to the baby and cause an infection during birth) done, but the results had not come back yet.  To be cautious the nurses put me on an antibiotic drip through my IV.  The antibiotic combined with the contractions caused me to need to use the restroom FREQUENTLY!  Because I was hooked up to several wires I needed Brent to assist me in the process . . . this was just lovely!

The next obstacle I came across was my raising blood pressure.  I have never in my life had an issue with my blood pressure, why did it have to start now?!   I was instructed to lie on my left side to help keep the pressure down.  After about 45 minutes of this my shoulder and hip began to ache from the thin mattress that I was on.

Finally, around 8:45 the nurses told me my water had been broken for too long and that they needed to try Pitocin.  They had offered to use it earlier; however, I had asked to wait.  I went so quickly with my first child and I had heard terrible stories about how intense it made the contractions.  Knowing what I know now, I would have allowed them to use it the first time they offered.  It isn’t bad.

About 45 minutes after being on the Pitocin I told a nurse that I felt like I needed to push.   She agreed that it was time and informed me that the doctor was on her way, but if she didn’t get there in time the Attending (You know the weird, uncomfortable, MAN from earlier) was waiting in the hall.  As much as I wanted to hold my baby, I didn’t want that guy all up in my business.  Shortly after the nurse shared this information with me I said, “I’m not trying to be rude, but I go to an all FEMALE practice for a reason.  I am not comfortable with a male delivering my baby.”  I vividly remember praying “Please let my doctor get here quickly!”  My doctor walked in the door and G was beginning to crown . . . my prayers were answered, my doctor made it!

A few short moments later I was holding my beautiful baby boy.  He weighed 5 pounds 15 ½ ounces and was 21 ½ inches long.  He had 10 fingers, 10 toes, and light colored hair.  Still to this day I can remember how tiny he was; considering he was born at 35 weeks he was actually a pretty good size.

He is such an amazing little boy.  G has taught us that laughter is the best medicine.  He has such a happy go lucky personality.  Each day I am thankful to have been chosen to be this little boy’s Mommy.

Mar 7, 2012

The Coat Closet

On the top shelf of the closet I have containers for gloves, hats, and scarves. The outside of the containers have labels on them.

The rack where coats are hung has dividers attached to it. I hung all of Brent’s coats in one section, my coats are in a second section, and the third section holds extra hangers.

There is a set of hooks on the lower inside of the wall (They were like this when we moved in, great idea!). It’s just perfect for the kids to reach and hang their coats and “On the Go Bags”(see Mommy Things tab).

On the floor I keep my bag for work. It’s easy to grab on my way out the door and out of the way!

There are 3 hooks on the inside of the door. B and G hang their backpacks on 2 of the hooks. We hang the diaper bag on the 3rd hook.

Mar 6, 2012

Surviving the Cycle . . .

I returned to work yesterday after being gone for a total of 12 weeks.  2 of the 12 weeks were during Christmas break.  Over all my day went well and more importantly, so did Baby M’s day. 

I’m not sure what is more exhausting, getting up at 4:30 and working all day without a nap or physically packing and hauling all of the ‘stuff’!

I began my back to work preparation on Saturday.  I went to work to ‘tidy’ up a bit and look over lesson plans.  In my mind I assumed that I would need to put a few things back in their correct places and pick up a little here and there.  I set a personal time frame of about 3 hours to take care of business. 

Sadly, I spent 6 hours because there was more cleanup to be done than I anticipated.  I was extremely disappointed with the condition my classroom was left in.  It appeared as if The Tasmanian Devil stepped in during my leave.  Needless to say, I missed out on family time and left me feeling even more upset.

On Sunday I attempted to pack up items that both Baby M and I would need to survive on Monday.  Last week Baby M and I took a load (diapers, wipes, extra clothes, blankets, burp rags, etc.) to the babysitters house when we went to visit.  I packed bottles, milk, toys, and the portable swing for her to take on Monday.

For myself I packed items to pump with (bottles, milk bags, a cooler with a cold pack, a blanket to cover with, the pump its self), a lunch, water, and my school bag.  When all was said and done, there were a total of 6 bags between us!

Brent and I took Baby M to the babysitter together because it was her first day.  I hustled into work as fast as I could.  After unpacking things I locked my door, covered the window on the door, and pumped as I checked my morning email.  I pumped again 2 more times throughout the day.

At 5:00 I packed up all 5 of my bags and headed to pick up Baby M at the sitters along with B and G (they attend Kindergarten and preschool in the same building).

I arrived home a little after 6:00.  Brent kissed me goodbye (it was like we were 2 ships passing in the night) as he headed out the door to a Little League meeting for B.    Brent had dinner made (how awesome is that?!) so all I had to do was warm it up after unloading the junk and putting it away.

Brent was back home around 7:30.  Just in time to read stories and put the boys to bed.  After tucking them in for the night I hopped in the shower, fed Baby M, and went to bed.

I woke up at 4:30 only to begin the cycle again.  I just wish there were some way to make the day longer.  I feel as if more time was wrapped up in preparation rather than with my family.

I know there is no simple solution to fix this.  It’s just a new routine that I’m going to have to get accustom to.  Unfortunately, time is the only fix for this situation.  I only wish I weren’t so impatient. 

Mar 5, 2012

Kids' Bathroom

Kids’ Bathroom

The kids’ bathroom, or hall bathroom, only had one towel bar. One towel bar in a bathroom that will eventually be shared by 3 children causes 2 problems. 1) It’s not big enough! 2) It’s too tall!

We added this set of hooks that contains 4 hooks. In our old house it was in our son’s room. There really isn’t a place for it in his room at the new house. It works as a great place for the kids to hang their towels on their own!

B and G are beginning to have trouble sharing items. To alleviate the arguing I gave them each a shelf. The shelves are labeled with their names and their personal items on their personal shelves. The bottom shelf has items they share, like toothpaste.

The bathroom has a double sink. Under the first sink there are two containers. Each container is labeled. One container holds item for guests (like lotion, body wash, shampoo, etc.) while the other container holds lotion and body wash for the kids.

Under the second sink two more containers can be found. One container holds bath toys. The other container holds extra toilet paper.

Mar 4, 2012

Woody from Toy Story (4 years old)

I have previously shared my son’s love of the Toy Story movies resulting in a total of 4 Toy Story themed birthday parties.  This love began with his 3rd birthday party which I have also already shared.   When his 4th birthday approached he informed me that it must be a Woody theme, because the previous year was Buzz Lightyear.  As he said this to me the tone of his voice practically said “Well duh, Mommy!  Why wouldn’t this year be a Woody theme?”  Again, I created invitations along with matching Thank you notes for the party.  I also made a cake and came up with kid friendly activities to match the Woody/Cowboy theme.  Keep on reading for more details!

4 Year Old Woody Party
For my son's 4th birthday he chose to focus on a Woody theme. Again, at the time of his party Toy Story had not been re-released so I had a difficult time finding Toy Story items to use for his party.

I used cowboy patterned paper and brown cardstock to create his invitation. I also found an image of the gang online and copied it onto cardstock.



Thank You Notes
I used the same paper from the invitations to create the Thank You Notes. I always like to include a picture of the birthday boy at his party on the Thank You Notes. I have wallet size pictures made at Sam’s Club and they are inexpensive.
Email me at if you are interested in purchasing invitations like this.

For his cake I made a cowboy hat. To create the hat I used the Pampered Chef Classic Batter Bowl to bake the cake in. Woody, Jessie, and Bullseye action figures, Twizzlers candy were used to decorate the outside of the cake.

Bullseye Horse Races

What you will need:
Poster board
Paint brushes
Construction Paper
Number punch outs
Putting it together:
Trace the image of Bullseye on the Construction paper.
(I copied an image onto transparency film and then used the overhead to do this.)
Paint the image and cut it out.
Punch 2 holes in the top and 2 at the bottom.
Glue the number on the back of the construction paper.
Punch 2 holes in the top and 2 at the bottom.
Use the yarn to tie the Bullseye face to the construction paper.

Create a starting and stopping point. Line the runners up at the starting point. The first runner to the finish line win!

Panning for Prospector Pete’s Gold

What you will need:
Rocks (I got some from the dollar store)
Gold Spray Paint
Large Container (I used a large storage bin)
Foil Pie Tins

Putting it Together:
Put the rocks on newspaper and spray paint them gold. When they are dry turn them over and paint the other side.
Pour the sand into the large container.
When the rocks are dry hide them in the sand.

Have the kids search through the sand for the gold with the pie tins.

Mar 3, 2012


Staying home with an infant has its ups and downs and working does as well.  However, I have come across a few similarities between a Stay at Home Mommy and a 1st Grade Teacher.  I’m trying to prepare myself mentally for the changes I will be experiencing next week.  I have made a list of the transitions that I am expecting to experience next week.

I’m trading in:

1.  Rocking and Cuddling for

                Just because hugs

2.  Cooing and smiling for

                Excitement and laughter as they enter the door in the morning

3. Eating lunch one handed while nursing my daughter for

                Eating lunch while pumping and checking my email

4.  Checking Facebook frequently for

                Actual Adults to talk with!

5.  Fussing over difficult tummy time for

                Frustration over new academic skills that are challenging

6.  Changing diapers for

               5,000 restroom breaks (Not really 5,000, but some days it 
               feels like it.  On positive these kids take care of their own
               potty needs, I just have to monitor the hall for behavior!)               

7.  Naps for

                Oh man there is no trade in here, I’m in BIG trouble!     

8.  Fussing for


9.  Being on Baby M’s schedule for

                Being on the school schedule

10.  Sweat pants and tennis shoes for

                Dress pants/tights and not so comfy shoes

What do you like and dislike about your place of employment?

Mar 2, 2012

My Days are Changing

For the past 12 weeks I have had the absolute pleasure of being home with my daughter.  I have mixed emotions about returning to work.  I am, however, very thankful to have been given the gift of time.  To put it simply, children grow up so quickly.

I would like to share with you what Baby M and I have been doing for the past 12 weeks.

We are headed home from the hospital!  Please don't pay attention to the fact that she appears to be flashing her middle finger.  We've worked on this and she no longer does
it . . . for now at least.

Painting finger nails

Giving/Getting baths


Smiling and Talking

Soothing a fussy baby/being a fussy baby

Sitting up, Learning to Focus, and Playing

Napping . . . we've done a LOT of this!

Tummy Time

Cuddling  . . .  by far my favorite!

So there you have it my life for the past 12 weeks.  I wouldn't change an single second of it! 

What are your suggestions for keeping myself together on Monday morning?  (Besides the obvious, I'm going to need my morning Coke to stay awake!)

Mar 1, 2012

Coupon Adventures - Week 7

So I have a small confession that I feel compelled to share (get off of my chest and make myself feel better is more accurate) . . .

I think I the reason I am excited to embark upon my weekly shopping trip is because . . . well because I treat myself to a Frappuccino from Starbucks! Wow there I said it, well typed it, Whew! I feel so much better now that I have that off of my chest.

Doesn't this just look delish?!

I do put a lot of work into trying to save money for our family so I am entitled to this itty bitty little treat once a week right?! Well that’s what I tell myself anyhow.

Also, as silly as this may sound I do actually enjoy my weekly shopping trips because it allows me to spend time with my daughter. Even though she is only 2 months old I like that it’s just the two of us. Sadly, this is the last week for our weekly shopping trip as we have known them to be. I return to work next week LI will continue my couponing, our typical Thursday shopping will change.
How am I going to leave this sweet little baby and return to work?

We went to Target first today because I didn’t need to get any cold items there and because they have a Starbucks inside. I headed to Starbucks once I got inside after ordering my drink I realized that my clutch (which contained my method of payment) had fallen out of the diaper bag and was still in my car!

The truth is as I was driving I reached behind the driver’s seat (where the diaper bag sits) and grabbed the clutch because I needed some chap stick. Apparently my aim wasn’t that great because I didn’t get the clutch back in the bag.
Matching bag that I use as a
diaper bag. Super cute,right?

Clutch, that fits in matching bag.
Now the need for a purse is

Totally embarrassed! I explained my predicament to the lovely Barista. She was extremely understanding. I hustled out to my car, retrieved my clutch and high tailed it back to find my drink awaiting me!

On a lighter note I would like to give a shout out to the nice lady who stopped to admire Baby M. During our little chitchat she managed to tell me that I looked too young to have 3 children! Gotta be honest here, this was the HIGHLIGHT of my day. THANK YOU!!!

CVS Savings: $ 11.83
Marsh Savings: $ 2.33

Meijer Savings: $ 36.40
Target Savings: $ 15.45
Walgreen Savings: $5.00
KMart Savings: $10.35

Total Saving (all 6 stores): $81.36 Total Spent (all 6 stores): $129.78

What I learned:
1. Remember to take everything that belongs inside of you diaper bag in with you!
2. If you bring reusable bags with you to Target they give you a .05 credit for each bag.