Sunday, November 29, 2009


I know this is a little belated, but here I sit a few days past Thanksgiving with a sleepless night (thanks Zach) and so my little mind is filling fast... I do want to make a list of the things I have to be thankful for this year... Our little family has been blessed beyond measure this year (and every year), so I feel like I should acknowledge that. I know that absolutely none of these things just randomly happened. We have divine guidance, help and blessings from our Father in Heaven. I know that He is intimately involved in each of our lives, whether we recognize it or not, so I'd like to recognize it... With that, in no particular order...

I am thankful for that knowledge that I have a loving Father in Heaven who knows me, knows each of us, better than we know ourselves. He loves us beyond measure and has given me everything... my life, my family, my talents, my less than perfectness, and He loves me anyway!

I am thankful for Jesus Christ who personally suffered all the pain, sorrow, disappointment, hurt and sin that we will ever go through. He knows us too and has made it possible for me to overcome all these things and become better through him.

I am thankful for the 27 years of my life. In this time I have made so many stupid choices, peppered with a few good ones... I am grateful for the divine guidance to make those good ones! I am grateful that in those 27 years, I have had the opportunity to pray and study the scriptures to know for myself about the gospel. It really is the core of everything good in my life.

I am thankful for an amazing husband who adores me (and I him). We have had over 6 years of marriage now and are more in love with each dish washed and diaper changed;) Seriously. I don't know how I tricked him into thinking I was good enough for him, but here we are and I'm so grateful I can spend eternity with him!

I am thankful for two amazing little boys. Zach and Ike are just everything:) They can bring life and smiles to anything. They are two of the happiest little ones I have ever seen and I truly adore them. They amaze me everyday with the things they do. Isaac is so perceptive and caring. We are just enamored with him. Little Zachy has been 6 months of pure joy for our little family. He babbles now and laughs. He blows bubbles and gurgles. He rolls over and over and knows how to make a funny discomfort sound so Ike will quit bugging him. Thinking about the valiant little ones that are sent to this earth at this time for the special things that are going on now just amazes me. I know the gifts they must possess and think about the challenges they will face... I am just so grateful to get the opportunity to be their mother... or mudder, as Ike calls me:)

I am thankful for our families. They are so giving and so easily caring. Each of them have such special talents and gifts to share. I am so grateful to be a family and so look forward to being together again!

I am thankful for the opportunity to be in Phoenix. Who would've thought 5 years ago that Ben and I would be in Dental School in Phoenix! WHAT?!?! I KNOW this is where the Lord wants us and it's WHEN he wants us here too. Timing is everything and we are just so grateful to have the opportunity to be in school right now in a great program and to be thriving, even if some of our houseplants aren't:(

I am thankful for my ancestors. I don't know much about them, but what I do know is that they brought their families to America, a gutsy move, I'm sure. They were mostly farmers and religious. Thank you for passing that along the generations. I hope they are proud.

I am thankful for all of our friends. You are like family to us. We love you and really do cherish all the joy, insight and life you bring to us. Thank you:)

I am thankful for this Christmas season. It so doesn't feel like Christmas here! BUT, I love the spirit of the season... people are nicer. I am nicer. I love thinking of "the perfect gift" to give and love even more the extra service that goes on during the holidays. I won't disclose too much, but we really love secretly giving. Oh, how it warms my heart!

I am thankful for modern medicine and insurance. I know insurance is not perfect, and neither is medicine... but, I love that there is a cure or treatment for almost everything out there.

I am thankful for those who serve us. I have never been so aware of how blessed we are to live in a free country away from most every harm. Thank you to all the men and women who protect our freedom everyday. Really, thank you. We would have nothing without your noble sacrifice.

I am thankful for computers, internet, phone... all the ways we stay in touch. I love that even though we live far away, we are never "too far" for a phone call... or a blog update:)

I am thankful for modern travel.

I am thankful for dishwashers. Really thankful.

I am thankful for a house. Yep, this year we moved into a house. I never knew all the conveniences this would afford us, but there is definitely something to be said for a yard, a garage, and not having any attached neighbors:)

I am thankful for so much more, but you get the idea... I guess I should be journaling this too... I'll get to that (wink). Anyway, thanks for bearing with me:) So what are you most thankful for?

Sick in the City

Just as luck has it, I am conquering my first illness in Phoenix. Lucky because Ben is still on break until Monday:) I wanted to post this in case any of you ever have similar symptoms. I know without the keen awareness and loving prodding of my "sister," Jen and "mother," LaJean, I would be in a heap of trouble! As most of you know, I am breastfeeding Zach. I have been nursing him now for 6 months. Wow! Six Months! I also nursed Ike for a year, so I'd like to think of myself as somewhat experienced in the matter:) Well, chalk one up to learning a lesson... Yesterday afternoon I noticed that I was awfully sore when nursing on one side... like the engorged soreness you feel when you first begin nursing. Anyway, as the day wore on, I realized it wasn't going away. I also noticed my breast was really hot and getting pinkish in spots. After a few hours, I also started feeling flu-like symptoms... achy body, headache, nausea, you get the picture... Anyway, as we were driving back from a little day trip to Anthem, I started putting it all together and remembering a story about Mastitis my mother in law had told me years ago. I remembered her saying that it was important to see a doctor immediately because Mastitis can have severe complications if left untreated including fevers above 104, milk ducts completely blocked (leading to surgical procedure to lance), etc. She was hospitalized with Mastitis several years ago... So, after a nice little chat with my "advisors," I made a trip to urgent care to get it checked out.
      Now comes the Sick in the City... Our insurance only approves certain Urgent Care centers, and it is a holiday weekend, so my choices were limited. I ended up at a good one, but a busy one. I sat in a waiting room with about 15 sick people for 2 HOURS! Ughh! I just kept getting out my bath and body tangerine lime hand sanitizer and trying to breathe my own air. Luckily I had a few people to text or I would've been going crazy(er). Anyway, because of the sicknesses going around, etc. Ben had to wait in the car and at Quiznos next door with our kids (as our good friends are all out of town) and I needed him to drive me... not to mention, I had to feed Zach halfway through my wait. Luckily, the receptionist was nice enough to let me nurse in the car and then call me when it was my turn. It just wasn't very safe to bring in my unvaccinated child;)
       In the end, the doc took one look at me and knew it was mastitis. I am on an antibiotic and tylenol, and obviously not sleeping very well having lots of flu like symptoms. He said I should be feeling better in a couple of days. I am just feeling really blessed to be able to go to the doctor when I need to and to have a mother in law, and sister in law good enough to teach me about things like this and strong enough to tell me to get to the doc immediately. If I would've waited, I know my fever would've been really really bad. So, life will be good, and for now, I'm trying to not work too hard... we'll see how that goes:)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

As long as we're talking candy...

So, I read on my friend's blog about her favorite candies... makes sense... there's sure a lot of it around our post-halloween infested house! I have a few thoughts about this candy business...
   1. I now understand why parents are so plagued by their kids getting too much halloween candy... first, I don't want to eat it all. I'm working hard to not touch it
   2. It is constantly on our minds. I feel bad having to ration it for the family, but lets face it... none of us need that sort of sugar intake!
   3. We can't even GIVE it away! I've tried, but it seems everyone has this problem of too much candy. Strange times we live in:)
   4. I have heard of a couple solutions... my favorite is a dentist in Laramie, one of our good friends, offered to buy candy from the kids (up to five lbs. worth) and is then packaging it and sending it to the troops in Iraq. That is a great idea! I wish we could've donated ours:)
   5. My favorite candy is the kind that is out of my house! I like chocolate, but if I'm choosing a sinful sweet, it is hands down cookies. Keep your yucky candy:) The boys in my house love anything sweet though.
   6. Why is it that sugar products have to be so bad for you? I think just looking at them makes me gain weight... too bad.

Anyway, enough candy ranting... If any of you have a great idea on a way to dispose of this candy without actually disposing of it, let me know! I'm open to suggestion!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Gotta Have an Opinion... Binkies

This little modern marvel has saved my life on oh so many occasions over the past 3 years that I feel a great need to share with you my love for the binkie, and my warnings... To begin, as a new mother, I had read so many negative things about binkies... they can cause future dental issues for your child, they can be full of germs, addictions, nipple confusion, etc. I decided, and held to, my decision to not use a binkie with Ike while in the hospital. However, once we got home, I realized that this little boy LOVES and NEEDS to suck... He wasn't hungry, but had that need most of the time as a newborn. So, with the good advice of my mom, we set out to find a binkie. I think we bought every brand we could think of... I have really wanted both of my boys to love the soothies...
But, to no avail... These binkies are known to be the closest to breast and they have cute sizes that go from premie to toddler... We'll get to that later:)
My next try was Nuk. I think these are super cute and really handy when your baby learns to pull them in or out. They also are really easy to create your own fun binkie holder. Ike LOVED the Nuk. Zach HATES them... to each his own:) I have read that Nuks are especially good orthodontically too!
Now, luckily with Ike, these worked out very well... On to Zach... Zachary LOVES Mams. I didn't know much about these except that Ike hated them... Funny how each child has their own likes/dislikes even from birth:) I have grown to like Mams, though they are more difficult keeping in and most stores don't have very many varieties... But, they do calm the little guy, so we love them just the same...

So, my kids love their binkies... I love the mams for older kids 6+ mos (they have cute sayings and patterns), but typically, I don't buy bigger nipple binkies. First, I have smaller babies (so far...) and these bigger binkies seem to consume their little heads. Secondly, I am a firm believer in taking away the binky at age 1. I want it to stop being as soothing before their first birthdays... Terrible, I know. This is when their attachments tend to wane and shortly thereafter, get much stronger. When we took away Ike's binkies at 13 months, it was really more of a challenge to me than him. He had forgotten about it in less than a week. Regardless of when you choose to take it away, be aware that down the road binkies can affect speech and orthodontics, if it is used excessively.
I know there are lots of other binkies out there, some MUCH cuter than the ones my boys chose... Maybe we'll get the chance to test them out next time around, but for now, we sure love the binkie!
So, what do you think? Have any of you had good or bad binky experiences? I'm always open to suggestion! When do you take it away? Any tricks?
Well, in the end, Bless You, Binkie manufacturers!

Why not??

As my little guy kept me up last night with a case of well, not sleeping, I started thinking about my long, lost dream... That is, to blog about all of the random things that make life easier, or harder, and to get some input from my favorite friends and stalkers:) So, here we go! I hope you will find some joy in reading about my blunders and the things I think... At least, we'll give it a try:) Happy blogging!