Friday, June 21, 2013

Swing Set

Before we knew that we would be up to our ears in medical bills, Matt worked a couple extra shifts at work so that we could purchase a swing set for our backyard for the kids. And even though I love the swing set, that money would be nice now that we have these medical bills.

But, money aside, Matt looked for a long time on line and in stores before we picked a metal Lifetime play ground. We wanted metal because then we wouldn't have to worry about splinters, or sanding, or staining it, or warping.

It took Matt, a couple of weeks to put it all together because he was doing it in his spare time. Now that it is up, it looks awesome. The kids love it, we love it, and it definitely makes the yard feel like more of a play space. Before, when we would go to the backyard to play, there wasn't really much to do. I really had to entertain the kids myself the whole time. But now, I can send them to the backyard to play and I don't have to entertain them and it is awesome.

Here are some pics of us playing on the set.

 This is my favorite pic. Look at Dan's eyes! They could pierce you!

Here is a pic of the whole swing set. It has the swings and the clubhouse and slide. All the basics you need. This should last us forever.

Action shots! Oh yeah, I'm getting better with my fancy camera.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Pioneer Park Splash Pad

Pioneer Park, in Provo, has a new splash pad. The park has been under construction for what feels like forever, but it is finally done! Now they have a fenced playground, no more dangerous water canal and a fancy shmancy splash pad.

I love splash pads, but the one at the Riverwoods is small and busy all the time, so I was really excited when I heard about this new splash pad. We took the kids on a Friday morning (fountains start at 10am in case you are wondering) but we were like 10 minutes early, so we let the kids play on the playground until the water started.

The playground, was underwhelming. It was a Little Tykes playground and it was not that cool. My kids played on one slide that they could handle and that was it.

Even though the playground was less than awesome, the splash pad was amazing. It is huge. So very huge. And, there are tons of places for parents to sit, which I loved.

The kids had so much fun. Dan was screaming with glee and chasing Nicoley and Nicole was calculatingly maneuvering through the streams of water. Nicole was more brave about going through the streams then Dan was, but Dan got braver the longer we were there.

I couldn't get the kids to look at the camera while they were playing. They were having too much fun. And, I didn't have my zoom lenses with me, so I couldn't get a lot of close up shots without entering the water myself, which I was not going to do. I was not suited up for water fun.

I loved watching the kids play in the water. Nicole made up a game with her croc shoe where it was a boat and then Dan had to do it to. Funny kids.

I highly recommend this splash pad, it is so much fun. We only stayed like thirty minutes before the kids were cold and ready to be done, but that was fine with me since I was done too.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Backyard Swimming

We bought this little pool last year because it was a hot summer. But, last year, when we tried to put the kids in the pool, they cried like we were trying to harm them with the cold water of the pool. This year though, when I got out the pool, the kids couldn't get in it fast enough. The cold water didn't even phase them.

Nicole decided that the pool needed toys, so she ran inside and got the bath toys. That ended up being a big mistake because all the bath toys got grass in them when Dan decided to add grass to the pool.

It is just a simple thing, fill a pool up with water, but the kids were so happy about it. I love it when my kids play well together and are happy. It makes for a happy mommy.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


Before I introduced my new and improved sticker reward system, Nicole would work on a sticker chart for many months and then get a big prize when she completed it. This time, she got skates... which it turns out are pretty expensive when you have to buy pads and a helmet too. We decided to go with skates instead of a bike because Nicole is afraid of bikes.

Nicole was afraid as soon as she got on her feet, but Matt held on to her and helped her skate around for a while. She was done after two seconds, but persisted and eventually got the hang of it.

She didn't really like skating until I took her into the garage and had her skate in there. Then, she loved it because it was a nice, smooth, even surface. Now she skates in the garage all the time, so it turned out to be a good pic.

Dano wanted to try out the skates because he has to do everything that Nicole does. He couldn't find his feet the whole time. It was just too much for him. He is too little. But, he wants to try every time that Nicole skates.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hair Cut

After I lost the baby, I felt like I needed a change. Some may say that it is an early mid-life crisis... or... brilliance! When I was single, and I had a break up, I would feel sad and I would dye my hair. But, now that I'm older, and have kids, I try to steer clear of the crazy hair colors that I did when I was younger. So... this ended up with me cutting my hair.

It is a big change, so I wasn't sure if I liked it at first. But, after a couple of weeks and learning how to style it myself, I am very pleased.

These pics are from the day I got it cut and I hadn't styled it myself.

Here is a pic of me styling it myself. I have finally gotten the hang of it. Short hair is definitely different hair skills then long hair. I can't get it to look like my stylist does it, but I can do it in a way I like. Also, this is a bad pic of Nicole, but I looked really good in it, so ignore that she looks bad.

Saturday, June 01, 2013


So, as a follow up to my totally serious post about Nicole's Aspergers... I'm going to have a totally serious post. Yep, I've had a bad month or so.

A year ago, Matt and I started trying to get pregnant. Every time my baby turns one, there is some magical switch in my hormones that tells me that I need another baby because my baby is no longer a baby. So, Dan turned one a little over a year ago and I got the baby hunger.

But, I quickly discovered that my body was out of whack when I didn't have a period for six months, but I was not pregnant. My body was just all messed up from the birth control that I was on. So, after nine months of trying to get pregnant, I finally decided to give up and stop actively tracking my cycle and my ovulation and just give up for a little while because it was all too stressful. I felt hopeful every month when my cycle wasn't the exact amount of days as the previous month only to be disappointed again. Plus, I had spent way too much money on pregnancy tests and I was tired of seeing that stupid little minus sign.

So, Matt and I decided to just relax about the baby thing and let it happen when and if it was going to happen. And then, in my ten month of trying, I was a couple days late. But, I didn't want to take a pregnancy test because I didn't want to jinx it. I wanted to be very very late before I took the test. So, I waited until I was a week late before I took the test and I didn't tell Matt this time around just in case I was not pregnant again. But, when I took the test, I finally saw that little, magical plus sign. Finally, I was pregnant! I felt so relieved because I worried that there was something really wrong with me and I wouldn't be able to get pregnant again.

This pregnancy seemed different then my other two pregnancies. I wasn't as sick as with my other pregnancies, I was losing weight instead of gaining, and I was getting pregnancy symptoms that I had never had before. It was actually a fairly easy first trimester. I assumed that maybe my body is getting used to being pregnant; this being my third.

But, I felt strangely disconnected from this baby. I didn't feel the instant connection that I felt with Nicole and Dan. I felt worried and often forgot that I was pregnant. I just didn't feel... right. So, I went in to see my brother Norm, who is an ultrasound technician, to have a look at my baby. Oh yeah, I should mention that Matt and I are currently on private insurance, which does not cover any prenatal visits, nor does it cover baby delivery or any woman related checkups. It is pretty crappy insurance, but at least it is something. So, I had no intention of going to the doctor at all for this pregnancy. I figured that I have done this two times before, I can go without doctors visits and just pay the hospital bill when the baby decided to come. So, going to Norm is my only free alternative to checking on the baby as I had no intention to see a doctor.

So, at nine weeks pregnant, I went in to get an ultrasound with a worry in my heart. Just Nicole and I went as Matt was home sleeping off a night of work and Dano was taking a nap. So, Norm started my ultrasound and I could tell right away that the baby, though it looked like a little baby, didn't have the little flutter in it's chest that the heart looks like on the ultra sound. Norm was quiet for a bit while he looked at the baby from all angles and then he confirmed that the baby didn't have a heart beat. The baby gestated to 8 weeks and 3 days and then the little heart stopped.

This baby that I wanted so bad and tried for almost a year for just didn't survive. I felt so sad. Even though I felt like something was different about this pregnancy, it was still shocking to have my fears confirmed. I felt so sad, I felt a loss, and I felt so anxious. I waited a couple of days to see if I would miscarry the baby, but nothing happened, so despite the fact that I knew my insurance wouldn't pay for it, I made an appointment with a doctor. A new doctor in fact, one that was in-network for my new insurance in the hopes that perhaps they might pay for something. The doctor confirmed what we already knew, that the fetus had not survived and that it was a missed miscarriage.

Let me say something about a missed miscarriage. This is when the fetus dies, but your brain does not know that the fetus has died and you still feel pregnant, complete with nausea, exhaustion, headaches, etc... And, subsequently, you do not miscarry. You continue to carry the fetus and it can lead to all sorts of bad. It also royally sucks. I felt so upset that not only could I not keep my baby alive, but I couldn't even miscarry properly. Also, once I found out my baby had not survived, I felt a sudden need to be done. To miscarry and be done and move on and get the fetus out of me. This may sound weird, but I felt this sudden need to not be pregnant any more with a dead baby. I needed it out and I needed this process to be done as soon as possible so that I didn't have to walk around waiting for me to lose my baby. It is a state of constant anxiousness.

So, the doctor recommended a D&C, but I knew that my insurance would not pay for this very expensive procedure which includes paying the hospital, anesthesiologist, doctor, nurses, lab, etc. So, I decided to go the less pleasant and more awful route of taking pills and inducing contractions that would cause a miscarriage. 24 hours, many cramps, many drugs, extreme pain, and only a little bleeding later, I still had not miscarried. This was beyond frustrating, beyond painful (emotionally and physically) and beyond anything that I could handle. So, finally, four days after finding out my baby had died, I went in for a D&C that I knew that we could not pay for. The D&C itself was easy. It was a relief from the pain of 24 hours of contractions, it was a relief from four days of heartache and it was over quite quickly.

And so, my baby is gone. I feel empty, I feel sad, I feel tired, but most of the physical pain has passed. I really really want a third child. I don't feel like our family is complete, but, that baby was not our baby, our baby is yet to come. One of the hardest parts is trying to explain it to Nicole. Nicole is incredibly smart and extremely logical and when I tried to explain to her that the there was no longer a baby in my tummy and we wouldn't be getting a baby for Christmas, she had a hard time understanding. I'm not sure if she gets it entirely. She continues to ask me about the baby in my tummy and I have to remind her that there is no baby in my tummy. When I told her the baby is gone, she said, "Where is it? Is it in your hand? Can I see it?" It is a difficult concept for a four year old.

So, I am taking this time to recover, in my body and emotionally. I will put this in the Lord's hands. If we are meant to have more children, we will. Every trial happens for a reason, so I have to believe that this is another one of the trials that Matt and I have to face. In the mean time, I am going to focus on the two beautiful children that I have and love.

I think I now have told all my bad news. This was the other reason why I haven't been posting. First, I was sick in the first two months of my pregnancy, and then I was recovering from losing the baby so I just didn't feel like posting. When all I had was bad news to tell, I didn't really want to tell any news. But, now it is all out... for now. Because lets face it, bad things will continue to happen in my life, that is just the way life is. But, hopefully, now that I have the weight of the heavy news off my chest, I will be able to post about all the little awesome things going on day to day.