Monday, August 22, 2011

4 waiting...

Have you ever had something within reach and then you had to watch it slip away? Have you ever wanted something so bad, but no matter what you did it achieve it, it didn't turn out the way you had hoped it would?

This year has been a difficult one for our family. We've had a lot of changes, a lot of illness, and well, a lot of losses. This past few weeks has pulled me in more directions than I was able to go mentally, physically and emotionally. I didn't think I would make it through without being locked away some where warm where I was placed in a special suit that allowed me to hug myself all day long :) Why you ask? Well...(you might want to grab a snack, take a bathroom break, or something cause this might get a little lengthy)

August started off like I expected it to-chaotic! We were moving in just 27 days and I was not shutting down my daycare until the day before our move (we move out on a Saturday). I also found out that I was pregnant. We went up north and Moo was a little fussy. We thought it was just teeth (she was working on her 4 eye teeth and 2 had already popped through) and she didn't want to eat. We stayed up north the weekend and headed home Sunday night like originally planned.

Monday, I ran my daycare as normal but noticed around pick up time that Moo was running a 103 temp (after her nap) and informed my daycare mom's that Tuesday would be iffy depending on her behavior that night. One family chose to keep their child home, another one sent their child on Tuesday.

Tuesday Moo's fever increased and she didn't want anything to eat, only wanted to nurse. I called the daycare mom, who had brought their child to me, and asked them to pick her up. I took Madelynn to the dr and they said she had strep throat :/ She was put on an antibiotic but Wednesday came and her temp went up to 106 and she began to break out with blisters inside her mouth.

Thursday I took her to the dr and they told me she ‘may’ have hand foot and mouth and to watch for more blisters. If she had HF&M she would be contagious until her fever broke and I should be alternating Tylenol and Motrin for her pain.

We continued to do so until Saturday when her pain seemed no longer under control. Madelynn still was not eating, not sleeping, and seemed to be in constant pain. I took her to Children’s Hospital and they informed me that she had a severe case of Stomatitis and put her on liquid vicodin for kids (or the equivalent) and told me to keep her on a rotation of Motrin (double the dose) and the vicodin until her pain was under better control. They informed me that she was no longer contagious (she had been fever free for a day or so at this point) and so we attended a birthday party the next day.

Other than Madelynn being tired, drugged (from her Rx meds) and clingy Madelynn did well at the party. Joshua was amazing, following around Mr. Scott-catching toads and watching kids. We left the party and headed out to my sister’s house to pick up some tables and both kids fell asleep. When they woke up Joshua was VERY whiny, crabby and tearful and he didn’t want to eat-lovely. He played a bit with his cousins but he didn’t seem to feel very well, despite acting 100% normal before his nap in the car.

That brings us to the following Monday (August 15th) and Joshua developed a fever and was not wanting to eat. Knowing his history of reactions to ‘something’ we took him into his ped where he was also diagnosed with Stomatitis. His pediatrician informed me that Joshua was contagious until ALL sores were healed (unlike the ER dr who told us they were not contagious unless they had a fever). I cancelled daycare and stayed home with 2 sick kids until Tuesday night.

Tuesday night I started spotting and first thing Wednesday morning I called the dr and she had me go in for some blood work. The numbers were no looking good, as they had dropped by half since Monday’s blood draw and I was bleeding heavier. It was then determined that I was again miscarrying.

The kids continued to be sick, though Moo was getting better but Joshua was getting worst, and my daycare remained closed. I ended up taking Joshua to Children’s on Friday night, after he had been complaining of constant pain and was not sleeping. At Children’s Hospital they gave us a prescription something called Magic Mouthwash. It is a Lidicaine , Benadryl, Maalox mix that coated and numbed the mouth. Since he has been on this medication, in addition to pain meds, he’s been doing better. HOWEVER they told us, in person and in writing, that unless they have a fever they are NOT contagious :/ I talked to an additional 4 doctors on my way out of the ER and they all told me the same thing.

SO this past Monday (yesterday the 22nd) I reopened my daycare. Only one family chose to bring their children to me this week, but I’ll take that over nothing and so far only my children have been affected. Madelynn has been off of pain meds for almost a week and Joshua hasn’t had any for 2 days. Joshua is still sensitive about things hurting his tongue, but we think that it is just a fear of his as he starts crying before he puts ANYTHING into his mouth but then ends up eating the foods we gave him.

I on the other hand am exhausted!! We move this Friday (3 more days!) and I am still working through my 4th miscarriage. I don’t know why this is happening, but I know that God has a plan and I know that I have 4 babies waiting for me in the Kingdom for my return.

Some days are hard, like today, as I am running around, thinking my life is crazy and how much I hate the actual act of moving (but love the change and fresh start it brings) but knowing that we aren’t going to have the baby in the new place like we had thought is hard. Emotionally I am still drained from lack of sleep (Madelynn is back to her normal 12 and 6am feedings, but Joshua is still having nightmares at night) and from all that is taken away from you with the loss of a child. And this loss (my 3rd since January of 2011) has been the hardest, emotionally, because I REALLY wanted to be pregnant again and hold a new born baby.

We lost our first baby of the year in February at 5.5weeks. The pregnancy was not planned and though it was a shock the news that I was expecting was welcomed, embraced and wanted! When it ended in a loss we were heartbroken, but unlike our first loss in 2006, I wasn’t wanting a baby again right away. I was understanding that this perhaps was not the right time and I knew that God had a plan (and I still know this).

Then came June and I found out we were expecting again. I was in shock but very excited. After hitting the 6week mark, we told family and we were excited that things were going well. But then the beginning of July brought some spotting and news that we were, indeed, loosing another miracle. This one was VERY difficult on my physically, as well as emotionally and I the baby fever had set in for the long haul. However, we knew that a planned pregnancy wasn’t the smartest idea with our move, our financial goal with our move, but I knew I wanted another one.

Then a 3rd unexpected pregnancy came in August. I was/am devastated. This baby grew for 6weeks and for whatever reason, couldn’t grow any more. The kids have known about every pregnancy. Being as they are 3.5 and almost 2 they don’t fully understand what is going on or what it means that I have a baby in my tummy, Joshua (3.5) has seemed to have a hard time with understanding that a baby WAS in my tummy. Since my loss in February he has spent EVERY night and EVERY naptime falling asleep with his head on my tummy. He wants a new baby, and that doesn’t help my baby fever at all!!

The dr believes that I have developed a blood clotting disorder and so in 6weeks I will be doing some testing to see if this is true and if so, how do I correct it. It is all nerve racking, stressful, emotional, physical and overwhelming. I just pray I make it through this move in one piece, as I feel so spread thin and I can see it when I interact with my kids.

Right now I know one thing…I have 4 waiting on me. 4 perfect miracles who get to spend their day at the feet of Jesus and worshiping their Savior for the rest of their life without fear that they will ever fall away from Him. I have 4 perfect miracles waiting for my return so that I may hold them forever for the first time. I have 4 perfect miracles…I am a mother of 6 children, and no one, NO ONE can take that away from me.

I have 4 perfect miracles waiting…

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hearty Italian Ratatouille Soup

Prep Time: 15mins

Total Time: 35mins

Servings: 8


  • 1 Tbls EVOO
  • 1 large onions
  • 1lb mild Italian sausage
  • 1 cup zucchini, sliced and quartered
  • 1 cup yellow squash, sliced and quartered
  • 1 small eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup portabella mushrooms
  • 24oz chicken broth (we use 48oz)
  • 2 (14.5oz) of stewed tomatoes (we use diced tomatoes instead, same amount)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbls fresh basil


1. Heat olive oil in large stock pot, and saute onion
2. Add Italian sausage, cook until sausage is browned (about 10mins), remove from pan and drain half the fat
3. Add zucchini, squash, eggplant, red pepper, mushrooms, salt and pepper. Cook until tender-about 5mins
4. Add the chicken broth, tomatoes and sausage back to the pot and bring to a boil
5. Reduce heat to a medium/low-low and simmer for about 20-25mins until vegetables are tender and sausage is cooked through
6. Stir in fresh basil the last 5 mins

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Elm Creek Beach 2011-Roo edition

So...yesterday's post was all about Madelynn and showcased pictures of her at Elm Creek Beach. Today I will do the same, only for Joshua.

Joshua is:
Joyful, always singing songs or making music
Optimistic, most of the time (unless he is tired!)
Sensitive and shy
Happy beyond words when playing the drums
Understanding, empathetic and caring
Awesome at drumming and playing a guitar-music is in his blood and he has serious rhythm!
Joshua's experience at Elm Creek Beach this year was far better than last year and his fear of sand is starting to be out grown. Last year Joshua would not stand in the sand, even with water shoes on. This year he was running, playing, jumping and walking freely in the sand with water shoes and it was such a sight to see.

Dan and Joshua build a few canals in the sand and used buckets to fill them with water and watch the water flow back into the 'lake'. Joshua spent a great deal of time with his little buckets, carrying water to the canals and bringing the empty buckets back to water to fill up again. Check it out
And bringing water back and forth is some serious business, not to be taken lightly or for the faint of heart-lol
And as I stated yesterday, no beach trip would be complete without some swimming!! Joshua didn't want to go too deep, he wanted to be able to keep his feet on the floor at all times, so we spent most of the time in water depths equal to their baths at home. And like baths at home, Joshua swam in the lake like he does in the tub-on his belly, kicking and splashing!!
And this trip wouldn't be complete without mommy and Joshua swimming together, best of buds and always together! Joshua is a mama's boy, always by my side orsnuggled up with me at night!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Elm Creek Beach 2011-Moo edition

Madelynn is:
Moving constantly, always climbing or getting into something :)
Adventurous and Amazing
Daddy's little princess
Everything I had hoped for in daughter
Loveable, caring, kind and generous
Younger than she thinks she is ;)
Nursing still and showing no plans of stopping, often more than a newborn
No fear!!

We recently took the kids to Elm Creek Beach in Maple Grove for a day of fun in the sun. Madelynn LOVED it. She has no fear of the water, loves to explore, swim and just have fun. She is the total opposite of her brother! Here is a recap of our day through Moo's activities.

Madelynn is a TOTAL daddy's girl when she is not tired or wanting to nurse. From the moment she wakes up she is constantly yelling for 'daddy' and searching for him. When he arrives home from work each day she runs to the door, throws her arms around his neck, then climbs onto his back for pigy back rides...THIS is the look on her face that I see every time she looks at her daddy, which she happened to be doing in this picture as well

And while we played at the beach, Madelynn often took ‘daddy snuggle breaks’ to remind daddy that she loves him
When I stated above that Madelynn is adventurous and has no fear, this faces seems to sum it all up for me
Madelynn is fearless, always on the move, determined to let nothing stand in her way and always looking for something bigger and better!! And I can’t say it enough, but I LOVE this little girl!!

She is beautiful,

almost always with a smile on her face. Her hair is getting longer now and her curls are becoming much more defined. I love this shot from today that shows the little curly whisps she has that she gets from me
a constant reminder that she’s my little girl!

While we were at the beach, Madelynn had a chance to play with sand, a new experience for her. Joshua is terrified of sand touching him so it isn’t something that we have had much contact with. Madelynn, however, loved it and covered herself in it on more than one occasion while at the beach J She loved attempting to make sand castles and playing with it.

But after a while she had had enough of the sand, or finally realized that it was on her hands and then the sadness and pouting sunk it. It’s rather funny how something that brought her such joy and excitement a few moments ago now has her in this, beautiful, pouty face

…its pretty cute isn’t it? She did NOT like the sand on her hands at this moment.

And no beach trip would be complete without some swimming! Madelynn loved running through the water, throwing herself into the water, attempting to lay down in the water, but even more she enjoyed swimming with daddy. Here he was teaching her how to float.

She was unsure at first but quickly warmed up to the idea and spent a bunch of time on her back when she had her life jacket on.

And no beach trip can end without a trip to the showers J Madelynn LOVED the showers, and during the last safety break she would not leave them. She enjoyed the ICE cold water being sprayed on her. She enjoyed the splashing, the stomping, the giggles and the cuteness that came from her. And honestly, I loved it too!!

I need to wrap this up, so there was a jump in paragraphs (they didn’t flow like I had wanted them to) but time is getting short. I hope you enjoyed watching our day at the beach by watching Madelynn. I’ll do an update soon with Joshua’s pictures.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

OAMM Oatmeal On-The-Go Bars

Joshua is at the age now where he LOVES to help cook. Dan and I will announce loudly
And Joshua will squeal with delight and come running to the kitchen saying
"Here I am!!"
Today was no exception!! We decoded to give some 'on the go' bars a try. Joshua was SO excited to get in the kitchen and help me out!! It is so much fun. Check it out! (This recipe came from OAMM (Once a month mom)
Joshua loved every min of it!! We altered the recipe (below) slightly (changes in blue) but I think they turned out delicious-however neither of my kids would eat them :( I think next time we are going to add Maple Syrup instead of the agave to make them a bit sweeter and use almond milk instead of cow's milk (these tasted like regular/plain oatmeal and my kids usually have something more added to theirs). Anyways, hope you enjoy!


Oatmeal On-the-Go Bars (Makes 18 Bars)
2 Cups Old Fashioned Oats
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 1/2 Tsp Cinnamon
Pinch of Salt
1 Tsp Baking Powder
1 1/2 Cup Milk (any kind of milk — rice, almond, soy, cow’s — will work) (used cow's milk)
3 Tbsp Agave (used 3 Tbsp of honey)
1/2 Cup Applesauce
1 Large Egg
1 Tsp Vanilla
3/4 Cup Dried Fruit (Cranberries, Raisins, Blueberries, and/or Cherries) (used raisins)
1/2 Cup Nuts (Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, and/or Pepitas) (I did not add any nuts)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Place the first 5 dry ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine.
3. Mix the milk, applesauce, egg, agave, and vanilla in a separate bowl.
4. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet mixture, stir to combine and then stir in the dried fruits and nuts.
5. Pour the oatmeal mixture into a buttered or greased 7 x 11 inch baking dish.
6. Bake for 30 minutes or until thickened and golden.
7. Cool, cut into squares and serve.

*Allow to cool, cut into squares and place in a ziploc bag to freeze up to 4 months. When ready, allow to defrost in fridge for 24-48 hours.

*Refrigerating the bars will make them last up to 5 days.