Grandma Rocks It At 92!

20 Jul

Today this amazing lady turns 92. This picture was taken recently.  Isn’t she beautiful?  Grandma is incredible in so many ways.

Image

We all love grandma for her food. She cooks with so much love and butter. The more you eat, the happier she is.

We love her for her generous heart. She loves The Lord and is always reminding us to be Christlike.
We all feel so blessed that she has such vibrance and spunk!  She still runs up and down the stairs like an athlete.
I hope that I can have half as much energy and as pure a heart as she does when I’m a grandma one day.
We love you so much grandma!!
Happy Birthday!

Image 1 grandma & grand-dad's 70th anniversary Ocean blue Sea Glass Wedding Decor

Advertisements

Gifts for Tweens Are Hard

17 Jul

I have a ton of tween nieces.  All fabulous.  They are so hard to shop for.  The cutesy stuff no longer applies and the stuff they want often comes with that picture of an apple on it; and I wouldn’t dare try to buy clothes for them.  I decided a bath wrap was kind of spa-ish (I saw lots of ideas for spa baskets…but no one ever really uses that stuff) and functional.  I like functional.
Tween gifts Bath wrap tutorial

I found a bunch of tutorials, but this one made the most sense to me.  This one inspired the ruffle.  As always, I followed it loosely.  Many tutorials call for terry cloth, but I like the large and super plush towels that Costco & Sams club sell.  Plus, they are huge!  I cut off about a third of this towel.

My favorite part is the ruffle…although it killed two of my sewing machine needles.  I free-motioned her name to personalize it.  I think tweens are probably over appliqué.  I kind of want one now.

Easy Drawstring Bag Tutorial

11 Jul

I’m usually a room parent for my kids’ classes, but I opted out this past year since I spent a good portion of my pregnancy in the horizontal position.  I know the amount of time and work that goes into helping out the classrooms, so I wanted to thank them some how.  I found a great tutorial for drawstring bags online.  I think it’s one of the easiest around.  I filled them with a bag of cookies and a thank you note.

Drawstring Bag Tutorial Teacher Gift

They would work for teacher gifts too, but we ended up doing personalizing water bottles instead.  Thanks to my sisters for their Sillhouette & Vinyl.

Teacher Gift Ideas

You could make a bazillion of these for so many things!  Here’s the link to the tutorial:

Best drawstring bag tutorial!

Remove Gum With Coconut Oil!!!

11 Jul

remove gumI had to share this!!!  My daughter got a LOT of gum stuck in her hair.  And she tried to get it out herself without telling me, so you can imagine what a mess it was.  I wished that I had a picture because it was bad.  Coconut oil has become my “cure all” over the past year and I thought it might work better than peanut butter or butter.  I was right!  I wish you could see how bad it was because I got it out in less than two minutes…maybe closer to one.  No tears, no lost hair.  It was awesome.

Lucky for me, I got to test my theory again on the carpet (rug).  Here it is after I pulled up as much gum as I could without anything.

remove gum with coconut oil

I just put some coconut oil on the gum.I used my nails to pull up the gum.

remove gum with coconut oil

I wiped some of it with a wipe up and used a little more oil.

remove gum with coconut oil

Then I used a little bit of Dawn soap and water to get the oil up.  Look how perfect it worked!

remove gum with coconut oil

It was about two minutes!!  Hope you find this tip useful.  I thought it genius (If I may say so myself)!

A Very Sick Baby & Lots of Blessings

10 Jul

IMG_2608

Just as I was getting back into the blogging mode again…my baby decided to get sick.  I debated blogging about it because in the blog world, you kind of have to decide how personal you want your blog to be.  But, there were so many blessings that came in spite of everything that I thought it was worth posting about.  That being said, I’ll spare you ALL the details, but I’ll just say that this was the scariest experience of my life (as a mother) and probably the worst experience of my life.

In a nutshell, my baby developed urosepsis (something I knew nothing about). Her fever was 103.5 then plummeted to 94.9.  When I got that reading, I pretty much freaked out.  I quickly told my husband to give her a blessing.  There were a lot of other terrible things that her body did in the next few hours, but what I really want to remember is that when we went outside to wait for the ambulance at about 10pm (I think), my nurse neighbor just so happened to be outside (Blessing can you say?!!!).  We called her over and she gave a quick assessment and told us exactly what was going on and to get our butts to the hospital.  She told us not to speed (her dear husband is a police officer), but we did not listen.

SIDENOTE: My house was a MESS!!!!!  She stayed with my kids until my parents got there!!!  Love her for that…but still, my house was a mess!!!  In my defense, we were on the tail end of a house full of stomach bug people.  Still, a blessing.  Normally, I could have called on my sister to watch my kids, but she was out of town, so having my sweet neighbor there made it so that I didn’t have to wait to go to the hospital.  Did I mention my house was a mess?????!

We opted NOT to go in the ambulance because they wouldn’t have taken us to our hospital of choice.  The ER doc made an erroneous call on her condition and being that I was armed with the knowledge my neighbor provided me with (again…a blessing!), I was able to push (demand) that the pediatrician come and see her.  Once the Peds came to the ER, they pretty much high tailed us out of the ER.  You know how doctors have to be polite to other doctors; never undermine each other?   I appreciated the “What the h-ll” face the pediatrician obviously directed to the ER doc when she came to see my baby.

Once we were moved to the PICU, it was all hands on deck.  I’m so thankful for all the work that the nurses and doctors did on her as awful as it was to watch.  Everyone fell in love with her squishy body.  They are used to seeing skinny babies and they couldn’t get over her chubs.  I can’t say enough about how determined everyone was to making her better as fast as they could.  Then, for the duration of our stay there  they would pop in and check on her even though they weren’t “assigned” as her nurse.

Other blessings:

We knew she had a UTI because they found it when I was in the clinic earlier that day.  She didn’t have obvious signs yet of going septic.  They gave her two shots of antibiotics.

Normally, we love her chubs, but in the hospital, her healthy physique made it extremely difficult to see her veins.  There were at least 17 attempts at getting an IV on her.  Many different departments tried.  ER, Pediatrics, NICU, Anesthesia, multiple nurses & finally, the NICU doc from another hospital all took a few stabs at it…literally.  The couple of times that they were able to get a vein, it would collapse.  I feel so very blessed that she already had the antibiotics in her system from the clinic that day.  It was starting to fight the bacteria.  Because of the bacteria going to her blood, they really needed her to get the medicine through an IV since it’s a more direct route than the shot.  Having failed at getting an IV, the doctor wanted to put in a central line (which scared the crap out of me).  They also considered a spinal tap.  BUT, because of her quick response to the meds (via the shots) and drinking pedialite like it was going out of style, they felt like the path we were on was working.  She was responding good to the treatment.

Part of the decision for not doing the spinal was based on the fact that the doc assumed she had her two month vaccinations because the computer system didn’t flag her like it should have.   There is a vaccination they get at two months that prevents meningitis.  If she was flagged that the vaccinations weren’t given (I felt like an awful mom when the doc realized she didn’t get them), they for sure would have done the tap.  Why is that a good thing?  Doing a spinal tap can be very risky.  On the other hand, having bacteria in the spine is life threatening.  Why I feel blessed?  We were able to avoid three VERY invasive procedures on a little four month body.  The spinal tap and the central line.  The central line would have required not just the insertion of the line, but they also would have had to put her under anesthesia.  I am sooooooo grateful that things happened the way that they did and she was able to avoid all those procedures.

Thank you to everyone who specifically prayed that she would not have to do the central line.  Thank you mom for putting her name in the temple.  Once the decision was made not to do the line OR the tap, I almost passed out because I was so relieved (and slightly sleep deprived).  It was an indication to me that the worst was over.  I’m so thankful to my parents and sister for helping out with my kids so much since my husband couldn’t get away from work.  I was able to really just focus on her and know that I really didn’t have to worry my other kids because they were in such good hands.

This is her in the PICU…she’s a teeny bit too big for that warmer 🙂

IMG_2604Here she is a day later after we finally graduated to a normal room.  She doesn’t look like a sick baby…smiled at everyone the whole time.
IMG_2611

The nurses brought her this hat to help keep her from losing body heat.

IMG_2630

This was the night before we went home.  It’s 3am and they are trying to get her body temp back up so they put her to sleep on warmers and one of my favorite nurses made her this cute hat out of a onesie!

IMG_2655

Here she is…ready to go home after five days in the hospital.  She’s so happy to be away from all the poking and prodding.  Don’t be jealous of her leg warmers!IMG_2659

I feel so incredibly blessed.  I know families endure much worse medical experiences for their little ones.  I am thankful that this was something that was treatable.  I hated watching my baby go through this.  But, I’ve learned that although the Lord doesn’t shield us from awful experiences, he lovingly provides tender mercies.  That way, while we have to go through the junk stuff, we can feel His love and know that He is aware of our concerns.  Once I started recognizing the blessings, I had hope that she would be okay.  And she is.  We’ve spent waaaayyy too much time in the hospital both during the pregnancy and after.  I hope we’ve done our time and we don’t have to do it anymore.

You’d never know what a sick little duck she was just a little bit ago.

IMG_2940

*The first picture at the top is the first time we got to hold her outside of the incubator thingy.

Healthy Chicken Salad & Refreshing Mango Dressing

12 Jun

My husband has dubbed our house the “House of Horrors” over the past few days.  All five of the kids have been sick…the really yucky kind!  All that “horror” has left me craving something healthy and refreshing.  Go figure.

I was looking for a mango dressing on Pinterest, but ended up making my own…with inspiration from the ones I found. IMG_2699

Then I took what I could find and made this salad.  I never put walnuts in my salad, but since my freezer has a few bags my dad picked off the tree, I was excited to use them.  I think it might be a new salad staple.

mango dressing chicken salad

The kids who were feeling good enough to eat again loved it and even had seconds.  Winner! Winner!  I added the feta and chicken individually.

The Chicken Salad:

diced apples

diced tomatos

walnuts

(as soon as the avocados are ripe, it will go here)

Feta

Chopped chicken breast

Disclaimer:

I don’t measure much when it comes to making things without a recipe.  Even then, it’s hit and miss.  So, know that the “recipe” here may need to be adjusted to your liking.

The Mango Dressing:

2 cups chopped mango (I just used frozen)

1/2 T chopped garlic

2 T apple cider vinegar

1 T honey

2 T olive oil

4 T apple juice

1/2 tsp ground pepper

You could probably reduce or eliminate the oil and apple juice if your fruit is not frozen.  My mango was frozen, so it was really thick.

Just throw it in the blender hit go!

IMG_2703

Hoping for healthier days!

I completed my project and I’m back!

11 Jun

It’s been a while!  I’ve been busy (miserable) working on this project which was really not fun at all.  But, in the end, as with all really hard projects, they always come out better than you imagined.

IMG_1162

She’s so perfect.  I was in the hospital for five days…and while it was a lot more than I had anticipated, it was great to hang out with just her for that long.  I love her so much.

IMG_1001

Meeting her for the first time.  I’ve done this five times and they are by far my best moments in life.  The other great moments are when the rest of the kids get to meet their new sibling.
IMG_1067 IMG_1062 IMG_1035 IMG_1050

Here she is at three months with her favorite person who is not a food producing machine.

IMG_2494Our wild family of seven on her blessing day.

IMG_2679So, it’s been busy around here.  But, there are so many things I want to share and remember.  So hopefully I’ll keep my word this time and really keep up with this blog.  For now, I’m going to lie down and squeeze next to this squishy face.IMG_2534