Friday, January 29, 2010

Partying with Dr. Suess


Last weekend my Momma, my sister and my SIL threw me an AWESOME baby shower. Dr. Seuss themed! It was unbelievably cute. My mom and sister always throw THE BEST PARTIES as I've told you before and this was no different than any other time!


They had taken so much time to decorate the house and the food was amazing! There was Dr. Seuss books and characters everywhere. One of my cousins had come in a few days early (thanks Sherrie!), and her and my sister had baked these delicious sugar cookies in the shape of characters and frosted them. They were so good. I wish I had more to eat! (Next time you bake Sherrie you can send me some to test!) Of course there was yummy cupcakes and mini cheesecakes and lots and lots of food. They even made blue punch to go with the theme!

I had such a wonderful time with all my friends and family. I felt so special and loved. We received many wonderful things but more than anything I just enjoyed being with everyone and having them share in my happiness. Thank you all so much for taking the time out of your schedules to spend a little time celebrating our Jackson. I can't wait to share him with all of you. And again, a special thank you to my mom and my sister's for all your hard work. You guys rule!
Thanks to my Aunt Steph for this pictures!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Our Claim to Fame

When we moved to our little town in 1994 there was a lovely family across the street that had kids right around my brothers age and younger. Nicest family in the world. Two of their sons were in high school the same time as my brother and we have all watched each other grow up. Now one of those kids has grown up to become none other than, Austin Collie. That's right folks, we lived across the street from a real live football star. The news interviewed my mom last Sunday after the big win. I think it's safe to say we all think it's pretty cool that the kid next door is going to the big game. And for that very reason. . .GO COLTS! (PS my mom is the pretty lady!)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pregnancy 101: 38 Weeks

One more week down, one more visit with the midwife over! I'm 38 weeks and we have PROGRESS! I'm 1 centimeter dilated and 50% effaced. I know this really means a whole lot of nothing but SOMETHING is happening down there and I have something other than the cramping, tightening and major pressure to prove it! So yea body and yea Jackson!

This weekend my mom, my sister, and my SIL threw me the most awesome baby shower ever. I can't wait to get the pictures to show you guys. They matched it up with the them of Jackson's room (which I will show you guys when I finish! 95% there!). It was all so cute and fun. I had such a great time and just enjoyed myself. Also, I actually wore real clothes, did my hair AND put on make up! That's an event around here these days!

We are now ready for a baby.  We have everything we need for him to live comfortably here.  I'm so excited I could pee my pants (which come to think of it I probably will because HELLO!  One more fun side effect of pregnancy!).  So come one baby!  Let's get this going!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Pregnancy 101: Visiting with the Boogeyman

When I started this pregnancy I noticed a real increase in the amount of dreams I had. Or at least the ones I would remember.  And they were like no other dreams I had ever had.  So vivid and real.  They weren't scary just crazy real and I would wake up and be blown away that it was actually a dream.  I remember one that I had about a baby crying.  I sat straight up in bed in the middle of the night because I was SURE it was my son. 

As I transitioned into my second trimester they seemed to go away.  I would dream every now and then but nothing that was that memorable.  It was a nice break because I wasn't getting woken up by these crazy dreams.  And then third trimester came around and all that changed.  The Dreams (and yes they deserve to be capitalized at this point.) were back and with a vengeance.  They have progressively gotten worse over the last two months and they are just vivid anymore.  Now its nightmares I'm having.

Last night 3 hours after I went to bed I woke with a jump because someone was about to hit me in THE HEAD WITH A HAMMER.  I had to actually get out of bed to shake it off.  I went back to sleep and woke 2 hours later because some crazy lady was hiding in my blinds and WANTED TO KILL ME.  I'm having these nightmares about once a week at this point and they are freaking me out.  In fact a few times when my hubby gets up to leave for work (he leaves around 4 a.m.) I make him leave the bathroom light on and I turn on the TV to fall back asleep too.  Last night after the second dream I was awake for about 2 hours.  Ugh.  Luckily I can rely on MTV and VH1 to entertain me with music videos.

Last night's dreams were the worst I've had so far.  Really scary.  And I've tried to be careful about what I watch before I go to bed so it won't trigger these dreams.  48 Hours and Criminal Minds have to wait and be watched in the light of day!  But I've also think there is a connection between what I eat too.  I have noticed that the spicy the food the crazier the dream.  Last night I made fajitas.  And not that they were crazy spicy but they are a little bit and it seems when I have something spicy it makes the dreams more vivid.  Don't know if I can give up my Mexican food though!  I'm just really ready for these dreams to stop.  I'm not much of a scaredy cat.  I've lived on my own and always did things for myself and never had too many scary moments but this is ridiculous.    Did any of you get visits from the boogeyman when you were pregnant?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Guest Post: NPH

I asked my friend Kelly to write about some time that she spend in the Dominican Republic with an orphanage called NPH.  They are a sister orphanage of one in Haiti.  If you have any heart at all the images coming from Haiti have affected you.  To see these people suffer so makes me feel so helpless.  Kelly has been nice enough to keep us (her friends) updated about what is going on with the orphanage in Haiti.  First, let me say I truly admire Kelly for what she does with her summers.  Secondly, I thought it might have a bit more impact coming from someone who has been with these kids and knows what their lives are like.  Kelly has included some website's for information at the bottom but if you would like more information please email me and I will pass your information along to Kelly.  I know she will be happy to answer any questions that will help bring relief to Haiti.  Thanks for sharing Kelly.


During the summer of 2008 I had the opportunity to volunteer with an amazing organization. NPH is what it's called, and it stands for Nuestros Pequenos Hermanos, which means "Our Little Brothers and Sisters" in Spanish. This organization was started in 1954 by Father Wasson when he took custody of a boy who was caught stealing from the offering plate at church. The boy had been arrested, but instead of pressing charges against the boy, he asked for custody. Within a week the judge had given him custody of 8 more homeless children, and by years end, the number had grown to 32.

The reason this organization is special is because it's a home. Yes, it is an orphanage in that all the children have been orphaned or abandoned. It's different than most orphanages because they do not adopt out. Once a child is placed with NPH (typically through the courts), that child has a home, and will never be asked to leave. Families are kept together. If they have extended family or parents who are too sick or too poor to care for them, they are invited to visit the children many times throughout they year.

This organization is also different because they not only raise the children, but they help out the surrounding community they live in . They take in children from the surrounding areas each day so they may attend school, eat lunch, and get access to clean water. They often deliver fresh drinking water to the neighborhoods outside the orphanage.

NPH is in 9 countries within Latin America and the Caribbean. I volunteered in the Dominican Republic as a preschool teacher, and taught arts and crafts groups in the afternoons with 1st grade - 3rd grade children. In the afternoons and evenings I ate my meals and spent my free time with a house of 16 girls from 3 - 6 grade. I was there from June through August (summer school).

This was the most amazing summer of my life. Here you have children who have parents who are unwilling or unable to care for them, yet, they are some of the happiest children you'll ever meet. They meet you with open arms. They call your name from every direction. They give you hugs and kisses. All they want is to sit in your lap and read a book, or play marbles in the dirt, simple pleasures. They know they are the fortunate ones. Yes, there are days when they are sad, days when no visitors come for them, days when they misbehave because they are angry and frustrated, but - it was truly rewarding to work with these kids every day.

In Haiti there is a branch of the same orphanage. Haitians speak Creole, a dialect of French, so instead of NPH they are called NPFS Nos Petit Freres et Soeurs (Our Little Brothers and Sisters in Haitian Creole). Haiti and the Dominican share an island, but they are worlds apart. Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere. The home in Haiti has it's own hospital focusing on Aids/HIV, TB, malnutrition and cancer.

These homes are amazing places. It's an open door policy. If a child is ever claimed by family (and it's a good situation) the children are free to leave. If a child wants to leave for whatever reason, they are never forced to stay. A child will never be asked to leave. Intead they are given food, clothing, a bed, medical care, an education, and a spiritual base with which to succeed in life.

NPH and NPFS are different because they are changing the cycle of poverty. These children are the next generation. They are being educated, they are given job training, they are taught to read and write and handle money. These homes give future generations the tools to support themselves, so they will have a chance at a productive life.

If you are interested in reading more, I've attached a few websites and blogs. is the international website is the US website this is a blog created by NPFS Volunteer Molly Hightower, from the U.S. - who was killed in last weeks earthquake. Please read it.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Pregnancy 101: It's Official

I'm full-term.  37 weeks.  I made it.  Now he can come anytime.  Well, actually, no, I've changed my mind about that.  He needs to wait until my ribs are healed otherwise momma ain't gonna be any kinds of happy.  And will be screaming for the drugs I would like to try to resist.  I can't believe it's almost here.  In just a few short weeks (hopefully) I will have my little munchkin in my arms.  Crazy to think that I started this journey so long ago and now here it is coming to an end.  I can't wait!

Friday, January 15, 2010

I think I just broke myself

So I have been having this AWESOME rib pain for about 2 weeks now.  If I cough, move a certain way, go to lay down it hurts.  Badly.  The doctor says to pop 2 extra strength Tylenol and deal.  But I think I just broke myself. 

Over the last couple of days it's actually gotten a little worse, not better despite the Tylenol.  And last night it was really hurting when I went to bed.  Well, this morning I woke up and it was still there.  I coughed, heard something pop and felt everything stiffen and seize up.  Super duper awesome.  So now apparently I have broken myself.  This does not bode well for my to-do list.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Pregnancy 101: 36 weeks

Nine months. 9. Whole. Months. I made it.  At the end of this week I will be considered "full-term".  I FEEL full-term right now!  I have definitely reached that stage of discomfort where I'm pretty much over being pregnant.  The only thing that is keeping me from REALLY wishing hard for Jackson to come is the fact that we are still putting the final touches on the nursery (I know!  I'm a little behind!) and the fact that I have a baby shower in 2 weeks.  I am officially okay with going into labor January 25th.  Just an FYI.

Everything is looking awesome.  Baby is still head down.  Unfortunately there is NOTHING else going on down there.  I've had this cold/cough for going on three weeks now and my doctor said that I can take some cough medicine for it so that's a relief.  And I have some how hurt my top right rib.  It hurts like a mother.  So everytime I cough I wince.  Everytime I turn a certain way I grimace.  Makes for some awesome faces.  But if I can stop this cough and give my ribs a break hopefully it will start feeling better.

I don't feel like I'm getting much bigger at this point.  Maybe I am and I can't tell.  They think the little man is weighing between 6 and 7 pounds right now.  Which is what my nieces weighed WHEN THEY WERE BORN.  I'm predicting a 9 pounder here.   Lord help me.

I've been doing a ton of sleeping.  Making myself sleep as much as possible every day.  One, it helps the day's go faster, two, I quickly run out of energy these days and three, the time is coming quickly where I won't be sleeping, I want to enjoy sleep while I can.  All in all I'm feeling okay.  Uncomfortable and huge but that comes with the territory.  Here's hoping I only have 2 and half more weeks to go!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: So Small

To find out more about Wordless Wednesday go here and here

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Pregnancy 101: Baby Doctor

So I have to choose a pediatrician.  I have NO idea how to do this.  I went to Kaiser's website and looked at the pictures of the pediatrician's and read their bio's but what does this really tell me?  A whole lot of nothing in my opinion.  I'm looking for someone really specific too.  I don't want someone who just tell me that "this" is what is commonly done and expect that to work for me.  I want someone who is going to take the time to explain procedures and why they work and why they recommend it. I'm not looking to do things like everyone else just because that's how it is done (I know.  So typical first-born-type-a).  But how in the world can I tell that from a PICTURE and a 300 character bio? 

So I need you folks to weigh in for me.  Especially you new moms.  How did you go about choosing a pediatrician for your kids?  And did you got through a couple before you found the one that fits?  It all seems a bit overwhelming to me right now.  I mean, I'm RESPONSIBLE.  I am responsible for another person's life and health and making the proper choices for them.  I don't want to be the one that screws that up!  So any advice at all will do!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby

Happy birthday to the love of my life.  You are my best friend, the person who's shoulder I lean on and the first person I want to tell all my funny stories to.  I'm so looking forward to this next adventure in our life.  I know with you by my side it's going to be amazing!  Loves you.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Here's to a GREAT 2010!