Just another mom blog…

For this child, I have prayed. (Samuel 1:27)

Archive for the month “May, 2011”

Bedroom inspiration pictures

Lately I have been studying up on how to remove fuex finishes from walls.  The plan is for me to remove the old finish properly and then repaint it with a French Grey color.  I’m mainly doing creams, french blue/greys, golds.  I want to make our room into a beautiful as possible, welcoming, soothing retreat for us at the end of the day. I will be sure to take pictures along the way and of the mostly finished room later on. 🙂 Here are some inspiration pictures that I love:


Random Updates

I was just watching the news today about how pedophiles are visiting the children’s section in public libraries.  That is so alarming to me that us parents can take our children right into harms way by simply bringing them to the public library.  The thought terrifies me. I am already very watchful when I am with my son in public and keep a close eye out for potentially dangerous situations and weirdos lurking around. Still though…a library? Really? I had NO idea that this was even an issue.  I have, however, seen creepy old men “walking their dogs” repeatedly around children’s play areas in public parks.  Even with keeping a close eye out, its hard to know innocent people from pedophiles.  I mean, when you think of monsters and you never think of a nice, clean-cut middle-aged man walking a dog, you know?  It is so scary and slightly overwhelming to think of all of the dangers lurking around in the world waiting to harm our precious little ones.  Sometimes I feel like all I can do is watch him and the situations he is in like a hawk, pray for protection, and listen to my instincts since it is far better being safe than sorry.

Also, I am a little concerned because all of the Joplin, Missouri tornado storm system is making its way over here. The tornado sirens have already been going off and the main storm hasn’t even hit us yet. The scary part is that we are both deaf and so if we are asleep then we cannot hear the sirens going off or see any warnings on TV.  It makes me so nervous especially for Nathan because we are supposed to keep him safe.  So tonight C is going to stay awake a little longer until the first sirens go off and then we will huddle downstairs together and pray for safety.

Anyhow, Friday is my cochlear implant surgery to have my magnets placed back in.  I am not looking forward to post-op pain, however, I am looking forward to hearing all of the new words my son says in his sweet little voice of his.  I am especially looking forward to laughter and how he tries to copy how we speak.  I will be sure to post later about how life is being able to hear him and all of the sounds and words that he say.

Tomorrow is a long day, and today was very long as well.  I’ve been in a rush to get things done now so that I can rest after surgery and not have to worry about things.  One thing we have to do tomorrow is to check into the hotel.  My surgery is ridiculously early Friday morning (6am) and since no one can keep Nathan and Chris is sick, I didn’t think that waking up at 4:45am to drive an hour up there for surgery and leaving a sick father to take care of an off-schedule toddler in the hospital waiting room.  Both of them will need naps and C is not able to keep his eyes on Nathan at all times for several hours during my surgery. Plus, I wouldn’t want them there anyways.  Our solution?  A hotel room near the hospital. The plan is to check in tomorrow afternoon. They have an indoor pool so today I bought Nathan a life-vest bodysuit to wear so we can go to the pool together and swim tomorrow.  🙂

Friday morning, the plan is for us to all wake up and then C will drop me off at the hospital for my surgery. Then he and Nathan will head back to the hotel room and stay there until it is time to check out. This will allow them to take naps, eat, and let Nathan play and yell all he wants in the room. They can even go swimming if they are up for it after eating a free breakfast.  I should be ready to go home not long after the 11am check-out time, so it works out really well.

I have a million things to do tomorrow so I am going to go to bed. Goodnight! 🙂

Brazilian Butterfly Exhibit

Tantrums and Co.

I’m starting to wonder if I should hang a shingle outside stating our new family business, Tantrums and Co.

Yes, we are in the company of Tantrums. Constantly. Two days straight, and I am exhausted from it.  God is on speed dial as I make frequent request for more strength, more patience, and for Him to banish the devil from my formerly sweet angel.

I have no idea what has happened to him. Yesterday evening he started throwing a tantrum because he wanted to go outside. Well we couldn’t go outside on account of the recent tornado warning and current severe thunderstorm.  I had him look out of the window and he still wanted to go outside. So I got down to his level just like the lady on Supernanny recommends and explained to him my reasons for keeping him inside. I said something along the lines of, “See the white balls on the ground? That’s hail. Cold balls the size of daddy’s golf balls. Those cold balls will fall on your big noggin and you’ll die and then mommy will die and the whole world will end and we just can’t let that happen, ok? So we can’t go outside, ok?”

He stared at me blankly for a second and then started screaming again. He felt sure that he would absolutely die of indooritis if he did not get to go outside RIGHT THIS MINUTE. He screamed relentlessly despite stern warnings and ignoring him. Finally, when the lightning was far away and the rain slowed down to a drizzle, I decided to let him see for himself precisely why we couldn’t yield to his “dying wish”.

I took the boy out onto the porch. He felt the cold rain on his noggin and immediately wanted to go back inside again.  I was feeling quite proud of myself for having that idea and thought for sure that his tantrum would be over with.

[Insert raucous laughing here]

What I failed to consider is that I assumed that he would be rational about it. Nineteen-month olds are NOT rational and in case you are in doubt, here is proof:

I put the child down after carrying him back inside from the rain, per his request, since he decided that he doesn’t like being in the rain after all.  He immediately asked to go outside again and I, completely dumbfounded, told him that we couldn’t since it is still raining. “See Nathan? Rain outside. Nathan doesn’t like to be in the rain. Cold rain. No fun. Okay?”

He stared at me blankly and proceeded to throw another round of tantrums lasting until almost bedtime.

Fast forward until today. He woke up cheerily enough and the day steadily grew worse from there. On almost no sleep, I stumbled through multiple tantrums thrown by a toddler who absolutely refused anything to do with a nap. If he wanted milk, I fixed him milk, then he threw a tantrum because he changed his mind and wanted apple juice instead. Or he wanted a cereal bar, but by the time I opened the package and cut it into small pieces for him on his table he threw a tantrum because he wanted something else. He was relentlessly exhausting to deal with, and I found myself counting down the hours until C could come home and give me a break, preferably so that I could try to catch up on some sleep.

At the magical hour, C walked in and I breathed a sigh of relief. If I had not been afraid of being body slammed by a force 1/4 of my weight, I could have laid down right then and there and slept like a baby.  Fate had other ideas. C asked, benighly enough, if he felt warm. I felt his head and told him that he feels fine to me. Per our routine, I fixed Nathan and our dinner while C changed clothes. By the time he came out from changing, he declared that he was coming down with something, probably the bubonic plague, and had no choice but to eat dinner, crash on the couch, and watch golf until almost 11pm.


Oh, and to really make me feel like a stellar Mother, Nathan pointed out the window and said, “Hell?” I stammered for a second trying to figure out where in the world he picked up that word, before realizing that he was trying to repeat yesterday’s lesson. “Nathan,” said I, “HAIL….there are no hail ‘cold balls from the sky’ out there right now. Its all gone.”

I kid you not, he got this wicked look in his eyes and said, “HELLS BALLS!” at the top of his lungs before running away laughing.

Lord help me.

Antique Secretary Desk

Many of you know that I love all things French. I love the timeless feel of classic/traditional styles of furniture and decor. A problem that I have been trying to solve lately is that I do not have anywhere to “work” from. Work meaning couponing, paying bills, writing letters/thank you notes, planning menus, and making grocery lists. I’ve been using the kitchen table, but it’s just not working well at all. For one thing, Nathan can and will climb up on one of the chairs and help himself to whatever I’m trying to do. I end up spending most of my time trying to get him to leave things alone instead of getting work done. The result is that I end up having several projects left on the table which then has to be put away for every meal. It’s just not working.

What I need is a desk, which presents the same problem as the table concept above. Plus, I need to stay in the living room area with Nathan and a desk would look silly even if we did have the room for one (we do not).

The solution? A secretary desk! They are space-savvy, decorative, do not look out of place in the living room, and they can be closed up and locked away from curious, thieving toddler fingers. I looked online for them but they are usually all antiques and way out of my price range. I realized that my only hope is to buy a sturdy antique with cosmetic issues and then refinish it. Like many people, I felt so intimidated with the whole refinishing furniture project and had no idea what it involves.

So for a few months now, whenever I got a chance I started to read up on the process of refinishing wood furniture. After reading quite a bit, I realized that the project itself is very simple as long as you do three steps correctly: proper surface prep (finish removal/sanding, priming) followed by painting/staining with plenty of dry time between coats; and finally applying a top coat to protect the furniture finish from scratches and peeling (also allowing a few days for it to finish curing). Most people with furniture re-do disasters make mistakes with not prepping the surface enough, chosing the wrong paints, not letting it dry between coats, and forgetting the top coat.  For those who are interested in restoring antiques the right way, I found this GREAT online guide with great details on the processes involved: http://www.restoration-advice.org/Pages/polishing.html#Deep-Dents

[Also, please note that there is a big difference between restoring furniture verses refinishing it. To restore furniture, you’ll need to understand the original finishing process and materials used and repeat the process over again either for the whole piece or just the damaged sections.  You can help restore its value by restoring it, and the value should continue to appreciate over time.  Refinishing it is when you also strip the furniture, but you do not stay faithful to the original finish process or materials. Refinishing an antique generally causes its value to drop or for it to cease to appreciate (gain value) over time].

With my new knowledge, I decided to look on craigslist. After a few months I finally found what looks to be a very good candidate. It is a solid mahogany antique secretary desk with original hardware and even has the original key for the lock. The wood is beautiful, but badly in need of refinishing and also it is missing the finial (a decorative piece on top). A picture of it is above.

I’ve also been looking online for how I want to finish it if I do not end up just staining it again:

One idea is to add a few wood apliques and do it white like this one:

Another idea is to do it a blue color and hand paint vines with modge-podged decorative birds added onto the branches:

Or I can paint it cream, or glaze, or paint it a french blue color, or add two-tone details either with gold leaf accents or by adding wood apliques painted a lighter color wedgewood jasperare style:


So far I am having a really nice, though slightly weird, weekend. It has been nice because today we went to the Brazilian Butterfly Exhibit and then out to eat overlooking the river. We had a wonderful time together as a family and I really enjoyed it.

Weird because I’m filled with mixed emotions.  Kind of numb in a way. I have another surgery coming up on Friday to get my magnets for my cochlear implants put back in. I’m looking forward to hearing again, but not dealing with the pain and the busy week getting ready for it while going through another miscarriage.

I miss my Mom. I recently found out that my step-father has a aggressive form of cancer.  He is one of the most honorable, kind-hearted men I’ve ever met and I love him very much.  It has been strange since my Mom passed away and he remarried. However, I know that all I have to do is see him and it would be like old times again. He is an amazing man and it breaks my heart that he has to go through this a year after losing his wife to cancer. He fought alongside her for 9 years and knows what to expect, which can be both good and bad. I just wish I could make it better for him. He deserves better than this. Much better.

I miss my Mom and my Grandmother, Mammaw.  So much has changed since she passed away and I have felt so alone as a  mom navigating the waters of motherhood alone. Then I went through the cancer scare and really, really needed her by my side then to help me though it.  Now I am having two miscarriages back to back within a 10 week time span and since she went through one too she would have been able to help me.

It’s hard trying to be a pillar of strength all of the time.  Most people my age still have elders whom they can look to for guidance and encouragement and I have only myself and my faith.  At times I do not know if I am actually very, very strong or if I am just as weak as anyone else.  At times I do feel rather feeble because I definitely suffer through the normal range of human emotions.  The intellectual part of me does not allow me the privilege of ignorantly stumbling through life’s decisions and blaming consequences on everything and everyone else as so many others seem to be lucky enough to do. It is frustrating at times to have this kind of responsibility to carry.

Sorry…I think I am rambling again. I’m very tired and should probably head to bed right after I finish this post.

Anyhow…I have not started this process of miscarriage again yet.  I am hoping that because this time was so early that the physical aspect will at least be easier this time around.  I definitely have not had the hot flashes and other hormonal issues like I had last time.  I’m really happy about that.

I really do want another child soon.  Today I was in the store and walked past the maternity section and almost cried. I wish so much that I were still pregnant with either of the pregnancies and could actually have a use for maternity clothes.  Part of me doesn’t understand why it seems like everything I want in life has to be such a struggle to get.

I am starting to wonder if I am cursed for some reason, if I believed in that sort of thing.

I mean, why can’t things just be EASY for once? Why can’t I wake up in a world with living, married parents, a body without scars everywhere and a functional GI system, ears that can hear, a womb that has never been robbed of life, and a history filled with the usual, mundane childhood and college experience?

Then I remember that had none of these things happened, I wouldn’t be the remarkable person that I am today.  I have learned more from my own struggles in my short life than most people learn in a lifetime.  My spirit is richer and more developed because of these experiences, and thus my trials in life have been an honor of sorts.  So when my little body finally figures out how to carry life again, and I bring another child into the world, I will have even more strength and knowledge to pass to my little ones one day.

I am blessed.

Decorating ideas…

I am thinking of making my own coordinating shower curtain and room curtains for our master bedroom. It seems like a simple enough project. Now if only I could find the time without a curious toddler meddling with my project. 😉

Oops…I didn’t mean it *that* way!

Lately my brain has been spazzing out big time.  I Keep making major language errors which in turn leaves me stuttering and stammering to recant my choice of words.

Exhibit number 1:

Friend: Having an awesome time on the Islands! Even saw a huge flock of birds- blue-footed boobies!

Me: I LOVE boobies!!!


Exhibit number 2:

Friend: We really need to take the foster kitten’s photographs so we can post them on the website.

Me: Sure! Come on over and we’ll shoot the kittens. It’ll be fun!
(Oh dear me).

I *really* need to think before I speak or text replies!

Another Miscarriage

I found out yesterday that I suffered miscarriage number 2.

I went to my RE (reproductive endocrinologist) appointment and was very weak still from my bout with the belly bug Sunday.  My RE, Dr. D, took one look at me and pretty much sent me right over to the ER for fluids.  They informed me there that I had another miscarriage and gave me two units of fluids.  I was sad about the miscarriage but inside I already knew that I lost the pregnancy. I don’t know how I knew, but I just did. I guess it is a Mother’s intuition.

Anyhow, after this natural miscarriage is complete I will meet again with Dr. D to possibly have some tests done to figure out why I have recurrent early miscarriages. The odds of having two consecutive miscarriages is around 2%. I guess I am just a medical oddity.

As far as we know, there is nothing wrong with our genetics or the embryos, which we learned from undergoing IVF to have conceive Nathan.  I truly feel like it has something to do with my own body not accepting the embryo for some reason, probably my blood is clotting off the embryo’s supply or that I have an immune reaction to the presence.  I am anxious to find out.  Anyhow, C and I have decided that we want to wait awhile before trying again. I want to make sure I get checked out to make sure that there is nothing else preventable causing this to happen.

The bright side of all of this is that I am really, really happy that we can conceive on our own. I feel blessed that we can conceive the way God intended and my own body can conceive and carry life.  We just have to figure out how to make the conception and ‘carrying of life part’ work together a little better. I have no doubts that eventually we will end up with a successful pregnancy and a sibling for Nathan.

In the meantime, I want to focus on getting my house under control again.  I have SO much to do.  I am looking forward to a month or two of no morning sickness and spending time at the pool and amusement park with Nathan.

**Here is a link for a website regarding miscarriage: http://birthingpains.blogspot.com/p/pictures.html

2 Week Wait. Oh Joy. (Will update until end of cycle)

Can’t you just feel my excitement? :-/ For those who are hoping to conceive, the two weeks between ovulation and the end of a cycle are NOT fun. The more you want to be preggers, the more you scrutinize every single twinge and cramp hoping and praying that it means that a little bun is making its way to the oven.

A crash course for those who are not familiar with fertility lingo:

  • A females cycle is around 28 days. Day one, called cycle day one (CD1) is the first day of her period.
  •  Around cycle day 14 (CD14), or about a week after her period finishes, ovulation occurs where the egg is released and she enters her fertility period.  This is when she can conceive.
  • There are tests called ovulation prediction tests (OPK) which can tell you when you have a LH surge and are about to ovulate.
  • Implantation is when the embryo implants into the uterus and occurs around 6-12 days post ovulation. Signs include: slight spotting way before a period is due, menstrual-like cramps that can be on one side or the other or both, or no signs at all.
  •  The time between ovulation/possible conception and the time when she expects either a positive pregnancy test or the start of her next period is the awful time called the 2 Week Wait (2ww).

What’s been mind-boggling to me is that since last night, around 6-7 days post ovulation (dpo), I have been having these strong menstrual like cramps but only on my left side near where the ovary is.  I recall having this exact pain when I was around 4-9 week with Nathan, and at 4 weeks with the second pregnancy.  Here’s the kicker though: I am on progesterone support during the 2ww, and one of the potential side effects is cramping. Ugh.

However, cramping is also a sign of very early pregnancy and pregnancy in general. It is usually attributed to implantation and/or the uterus stretching already.  The thing is that I have been on progesterone during other cycles and NEVER had this kind of pain unless I conceived.

These are my other 3 week pregnancy symptoms which may also be attributed or exaggerated by the progesterone:

  • 4-5 dpo: fatigue, slight evening nausea, moody, 2 am eating, possible slight cramp
  • 5-6 dpo: fatigue, slight evening nausea, moody, 2am eating, definite cramping on left side only
  • 6-7 dpo: major fatigue, strong cramping on left side, very nauseous in evening and at night, can’t stand the smell of chicken, vivid dreams, slightly out of breath, slight hot flashes, dizziness, belly growls a lot.
  • 7 dpo: very, very light positive result on pregnancy test in less than a minute! (Fingers crossed)
  • 7-8 dpo: within a few hours of taking the positive test, I came down with sudden flu-like symptoms with very high fever and lower GI issues well into the next day.
  • 8 dpo: took another test of the same brand, this time it was negative, but a ovulation tests was positive. I really, really hope getting sick didn’t cause me to have another miscarriage/chemical pregnancy. It’s so frustrating. I def do not feel pregnant today with the exception of my hands being warmer, which never happens, esp when dehydrated. Sighs.
  • 8-9 dpo: Spotting, likely further implanting.  +++ pregnancy test! I guess the little bean is still hanging on. 🙂  Today I had bad nausea and could not eat or drink even with zofran for nausea. I hope I am not heading toward hyperemesis again.
  • 9dop: slightly darker +++ pregnancy test! Feeling Started having strong vinegar cravings. Nausea is better today, though it started kicking in again in the evening time.

I always start having pregnancy symptoms the 3rd week of pregnancy.  I am just very, very sensitive to hormones.  But I guess it could just be due to the progesterone. I really need to stop driving myself crazy over this so that I do not feel disappointed if I do not have a positive outcome this time around.  The 2ww really is super-irritating though. Hmm…isn’t irrataion a sign of pregnancy??? There I go again…

Oh, and here are some more examples of very early pregnancy symptoms listed by days post ovulation (dpo):


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