Wednesday, November 28, 2012

10 months, temple work, and Christmas card

Lukus is now over 10 months old and growing way too fast!

I was able to go through the temple on November 23rd and do my sister's temple work. It was an awesome experience and I know she is happy it was done. I have never felt that amount of peace before. The whole year leading up to it was full of anxiety and panic to get the work done but once it was a done the peace I felt was so immense and amazing. I am glad I got to be the one to do her temple work and to have that amazing experience. I miss her every day and love her so much but am so happy she is in a better place and finally free of this life of trials.

Here is our family Christmas card

Sunday, November 4, 2012

This is late but Lukus is now 9 months old. He can now crawl, climb stairs, cruise, and loves his scooter walker. He has 2 teeth that have came through in the past week as well.

Monday, September 24, 2012

8 months

Yep, Lukus has made it to 8 months! He is not army crawling and days away from full out crawling. He is growing so fast! He has been teething for several months now, off and on, but he has yet to get a tooth. He is our latest teether now. He loves to eat, his favorites are Carrots(#1), yams, and peas. I need to try green beans still but have been too lazy to just do it, especially since we end up giving him our food because he loves to eat what we are eating when we are eating and it makes it so I can eat with the family rather then trying to spoon feed a little boy. He is one of the cutest little boys ever, the other 2 are his older brothers, he loves to scream and yell, but he also loves to smile. He LOVES his older brothers and loves being where they are. He has been my biggest challenge for a baby but he has been making up for it with his super cute moments that just melt my heart.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Lukus is 6 months and Shawn turned 4

Shawn celebrated his 4th birthday on the 18th of this month. I can't believe it was 4 years ago that I held my first little baby in my arms. He had a fun birthday party on the 21st and got lots of new toys to play with. He is such a cute little boy full of energy. He is very independent and wants to do everything on his own and is learning the lesson that sometimes mom and dad still need to do things for him. My new favorite phrase of his is, "I love you too much." as he gives us hugs he says this to us.

Lukus is 6 months old now as well. He is growing so much. He rolls, he is trying to learn to crawl, he giggles like crazy and loves to play with basically anyone that will play with him. At his 6 month appointment he weighed 12 pounds and was 28.5 inches long. That is a 2 pound gain in 2 months and a nearly 6 inch growth in 2 months. He is finally hitting his growth stride I think. He is finally on the charts with his length though. :) He is 8th percentile on height.

I love my 3 growing boys so much and wouldn't trade them for anything. I know the Lord gave me 3 boys for a reason, though most days I have a hard time knowing why, I love each with all my heart and know I wouldn't be who I am now with out them and can't imagine any of them out of my life. I feel they have always been in my life.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Always so serious for the camera. 5 months old!

Friday, June 8, 2012

 Lukus at 4 months old
 It's a little blurry but here is a smile!
All three of my handsomes. No matter how hard I tried all 3 wouldn't look at me at the same time, let alone smile.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Little behind

I am a little behind on my posting. Not a whole lot has went on since I last posted, a couple illnesses but nothing super major. Lukus had his 4 month check up a few weeks ago and was 9#15oz and 22 3/4 in long. He is growing great just at his own rate. It really is a perfect growth pattern though. His length and weight are both in the 1st percentile but his head is growing very fast. It started out in the 1st percent, by 2 months it was 4th percent, and by 4 months it was 8th percent. :) Lukus has started giggling and smiling like crazy. He is teasing mom already. He rolls front to back. He loves to grab fist fulls of moms hair. His tummy issues are going away. We still have issues but not nearly as bad. This little 4 month old stinker has stolen my heart.

William is in the full blown terrible 2's and is really trying moms patience. He can be the cutest sweetest boy though. At the end of the day I really do love him to bits despite how much he tests my patience at the end of the day.

Shawn is a pretty well behaved boy. He is almost 4 years old. He loves to make up stores and play imagination. It is so fun watching him create stories. He has an "imaginary" pet dragon that he goes on adventures with. He is a smart little stinker too. He already knows how to properly heat up Lukus' herb bag for me. I love him so much!

Shem is doing well in his job and everything is going well for him. He is loving the warmer weather and being able to ride is motorcycle. He has fun playing with his 3 little boys and is such a great dad to them.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

2 Months old

Lukus turned 2 months old on the 18th. He had his check up and is now 7# 7.5oz and 21 inches long. They discovered a heart murmur that we will be having looked at. They don't think it is a hole in the heart and that is more likely that his blood is just hitting the wall of the artery as it leaves. They also might think that the slow weight gain could be caused from a hole in the heart, if that is what the murmur is, or possibly Pyloric Stinosis. We will probably have an ultra sound done of his belly to check his stomach for that if the heart comes out clear. In the end it might just be him being a slow gainer.

Anyway, here are a couple cute 2 months pics of him.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Lukus is already a month old!

Where did that first month go? Okay I know I am a little late posting this blog post but hey I have 3 energetic boys to tend to, you can't expect me to be perfect. ;) Anyway, I have no idea what his size is for sure, weight, height, etc. But I can tell you that he has grown! I took pictures of him at a month old, I have done it with the other 2 so figured I should do it with Lukus as well. I will post some of those. We are also blessing the cutie on March 25th. I can't believe how fast the time has gone!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

another tip for saving $ grocerie shopping

I should have included this in my last post but I didn't think about it until a few hours later.

One thing to make sure you do, especially when buying bulk, is do a price break down. Figure out how much you are actually paying per ounce/pound. You may be surprised to find out that getting the same amount in several small packages is actually cheaper then getting the bulk items. WATCH THE SALES!!!!!! No you can't save as much shopping just the sales vs shopping the sales WITH coupons. BUT you can still save a fair amount of money sale shopping, especially if you just can't figure out coupons or you wont ever use the items you get coupons for. Because really, what is the point of saving money with coupons on items you will never use, is it really saving you money in the long run? Shopping sales you can actually get items you need for a good price and you know you will use them.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Groceries for $150 +/- $50 a month

So a friend asked me to write a blog post on how we only spend about $150 a month on groceries for a family of 4. First off it's easier when you have kids that don't eat much. ;) Just kidding. Though my boys don't eat a ton yet. I am sure we will have to figure out a different way, once they are older and eat more, to spend less money. But as of right now we, a family of 4-5, can spend about $150 a month for groceries.

So how do we do this? Honestly I am not sure. lol. We are sale shoppers, we do not coupon (we could never figure out how), we just buy what we need when it's on sale. If it's not on sale, we don't buy it, unless it's an absolute necessity. Simple as that. Now keep in mind this is ONLY groceries. This does not included toiletry items and baby items. JUST food items and the first couple months might cost a little more till you find what works for you and get a stock pile built up.

This will be hard for me to figure out because we have shopped like this from day1 of our marriage so it is second nature for us.

An example of what our pantry and fridge holds:(the basics until we built up supply and had a little more wiggle room to get more interesting things)

*meats; chicken, pork, ?beef?
*western family sauce mixes, alfredo, spaghetti, taco, Italian dressing mix, gravy mixes.
*canned diced tomatoes(with sweet onion)
*soy sauce
*frozen veggies
(*cream soups if we find them on sale)
*blueberry pancake mix

Okay those are the basic items that get us through a month. This is nothing fancy or extravagant. Just the basics. Once we get a good stock pile of the basics we will venture out and get ingredients for curry or other nicer meal items. Oh and nothing we buy is boxed or "just mix and cook". We cook only from scratch minus the sauce packet mixes and pancake mix.

So now for our menu. This will be particularly difficult because we don't follow a menu. We look in our fridge and freezer and create a meal with what we can find.

*Chicken and veggies; either grilled or fried but always marinated(keeps the *chicken more moist when cooking) and veggie of choice (we like broccoli, *cauliflower, and spinach the best)
*Chicken and potatoes; Chicken is the same way as the previous one. Potatoes; *shredded and fried, diced and fried, boiled with garlic salt, mashed, baked, baked *french fries, or diced and baked in olive oil and seasonings in the oven.
*Chicken and alfredo
*Chicken and pasta with marinara(our own home made marinara sauce)
*Pork and veggies; see previous
*Pork and potatoes; see previous
*Pork and alfredo
*Pork and pasta with marinara
*Beef and veggies; "
*Beef and potatoes;"
*Beef and alfredo
*Beef and pasta with marinara
*Tacos; any ground meat will work, we have used beef, pork, sausage, and elk so far
*Spaghetti; ground sausage, and our own marinara sauce that we make

*Pancakes, bacon (sausage links if we can find them on sale)
*french toast, "
*eggs, "

Lunch (this is the kicker)
*left overs
*hot dogs, mac and cheese if we have it and the boys want it

But it's almost always left overs because we make enough food that we almost always have left overs waiting for lunch the next day.

Some of our specialty foods consist of, curry, enchiladas, chicken soup(or any soup really), lasagna, and any meat item we might find on sale that is out of the norm IE steaks or sea food items, or anything that isn't chicken or pork chops. lol.

Seriously though, we really do just eat a lot of boneless skinless chicken breast and pork chops. There are so many ways of cooking with these that we hardly ever venture away from them because they are the cheapest meats available. When we get bored and can find steaks on sale we buy some steaks. Same with fish.

Our marinade is just soy sauce, olive oil, occasionally liquid smoke or Worcestershire sauce or A1, and seasonings (garlic salt, montreal chicken or steak seaoning,black pepper, used in what ever combo you want or different seasonings then what I have listed. This is just the main ones we use)

Marinara/spaghetti sauce; diced tomatoes pureed, spaghetti sauce mix, extra seasonings.

We really never follow recipes we just create our own meals. We eat a lot of chicken or pork and pasta mostly, then veggies, then potatoes. Beef is only when found on sale.

Once we got our food stash up we were able to include, toilet paper, and paper towels in the $150 as well as a few other items BUT only if we didn't need food items. We usually just try buying food items with the $150.

Our monthly list is always changing but a few things are almost always on there, meats, eggs, milk, and veggies.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Lukus Alexzander's birth story

Lukus Alexzander
Born January 18th, 2012
12:35 am, at home in the water
5pounds 2oz, 19 1/2 inches long

At my appointment on January 13th I decided to have my midwife check dilation and effacement as I was having her look at something anyway, rather than her checking she had her student midwife check. I was 2cm dilated and 80% effaced and baby's head was at 0 station. After the check I knew I probably wouldn't be much longer before I was holding baby. The only thing I really wanted to wait for was my yeast infection to clear up and my group B strep test results to come back. All weekend I was having bloody show and each day it would get a little bit more red rather than just pink. Sunday night I had a round of contractions that got my attention they were coming about every 8 minutes and were about 50 seconds long. That went on for about 7 hours with an hour and a half break somewhere in the middle. They stopped at around 3 in the morning and I got some rest. Monday afternoon one of my midwives was down in the area and asked if I wanted her to do another check. I decided to go ahead and have her check. She discovered that I was now 3 cm dilated and could be manually stretched to a 4 if encouraged to but I was still 80% effaced. That night I had another round of contractions that I thought for sure was labor starting but it never turned into a pattern and then died off. I was exhausted. Tuesday I talked to my midwife and she instructed me to take a warm bath and a bendaryl to try and sleep. If it wasn't active labor it would stop. I did just that and my contractions never went away but they just wouldn't get into a good pattern. That evening she called me up asking how things were going and to ask if I wanted her to come down and check me and see if they could finish sending my body into labor. I said yes to that, honestly thinking there wouldn't be anything she could do to help things along and I would just be waiting it out longer. She showed up at around 8:30 that night with one of the other midwives and all of her equipment. When I saw them bring that stuff in I started to think that maybe I would be holding my baby in a few hours. She then proceeded to check me and I was 3+ and still 80% effaced. She then proceeded to manually dilate me to a 4+. After we had to decide if they were going to break my water or do an herbal oil message and pressure points and then send me out on a walk, see if we could get labor going that way, and if needed break my water. Or just continue to wait it out. We opted for the oil message and walk. The message was wonderful and smelt so good. The midwives told previous birth stories while doing the message and we just laughed. My contractions picked up again during the message and we found I would have 1 big contraction every 10 minutes with 2 smaller ones in-between. After the message hubby and I bundled up and went out walking around the neighborhood. This was around 9:30p.m. While on the walk we were lucky to make it a full block before I had to stop and sway my hips through the peaks of the contractions. We were out in the cold for a little over 30 minutes and I could tell the contractions were intensifying. When we got back to the house Shem changed his dusty clothes (he was working in his wood shop trying to finish a towel rode) and then the midwives checked me again. I was now 5cm dilated and we went ahead and broke the bag of water, this was around 10:30p.m. Within 15 minutes my labor kicked into full gear. I have no idea how close my contractions were or how long they were lasting but I knew I needed to moan through them as it helped relieve the intensity of how they felt. My mom and our friend showed up at some point as I was down stairs in the front room on my knees, rocking on my birth ball. Lol. They both showed up while I was in a contraction or going into a contraction. At some point one of the midwives put pressure on my hips since they were really bothering, and that was heaven sent! When the pool was ready I went up to the bathroom and got ready to get and my body started clearing my bowels so I knew I was getting close. (I don't know times after they broke my water. I lost all track of time and didn't care to know either) When I got in the pool it was so wonderful! I only had a couple contractions in the pool before I got the pushing sensation. So listening to my body I started to give light pushes, and the best part is the midwives encouraged me to follow what my body was telling me to do. After several pushes sitting we discovered I had a posterior lip that I could push baby over but he kept slipping back up. Then they discovered an anterior lip that my midwife held back for me to push Lukus past. Through this whole labor and pushing phase the midwives never once told me when or how to push. It was great! I started out pushing, sitting in the pool and then baby?s HR dropped to the 90?s and my midwives had me roll over onto on my hands and knees. His HR came right back up. I knew that was a better position anyway because the pushing sensation got a lot more intense. While pushing I said several times, "I am so tired." "I can't do this" and everyone just kept reassuring me that I was doing great. Then the crowning came and I got really vocal. I never really screamed but I moaned very loud. I still never felt "the ring of fire" but there was so much pressure and it was SO intense, of course the whole labor was intense, and all I wanted to do was get him out of me and that is what my body was telling me to do anyway. Once his head was out the rest of him slid right out of me as I was trying to turn around and sit down and I heard my midwife tell the other one that was taking the notes that he came out posterior. No wonder he was so hard to push out and my body was having a hard time going into labor, and why I felt so much pressure in my hips! He came out looking at the world and it took him a minute to take his first breath, he just casually looked around and took things in. Which was so different then either one of his brothers. His apgar at 1 minute was 8 and at 5 minutes was 10. It was so cool just letting my body detach and deliver the placenta on it?s own as well. Such a different and better experience. Once I got out I was checked over while they looked at Lukus and I had one second degree tear and a couple other small single stitch tears. Took me a little bit to get Lukus to latch on because his mouth is so small. I started out having to use a nipple shield. But so far everything is going great and I had an awesome birth experience! I wouldn't trade it for anything. Total active labor time was just over 2 hours long, from start to holding baby. Turns out it was a good thing we had the midwives finish encouraging my body into labor because the placenta was calcifying.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Lukus Alexzander!

On Wednesday January 18th, 2012 at 12:35 am, Lukus was welcomed into the family right here in our own home. He was 5Ibs 2oz and 19 1/2 inches long. It was a fast and intense labor and he came out posterior, looking right at me. I will write up a birth story but for now here are some pictures of the birth. :)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

37+ week appointment... It's getting close!

I had my midwife appointment yesterday and everything is looking really good! I took my group B but I am starting to wonder if we will get the results back before I actually go into labor. My BP was good 116/72 and baby's HR was in the 130's. It took them forever to get his HR and took Shem and I holding Lukus in place to get it because he kept moving when they would try. He was flip flopping from left to right bad. Finally got it on the left side though and that's where he has mostly been staying the past day or so. I am 1 1/2 but easily stretch to 2cm dilated, 80% effaced, and Lukus' head was 0 station maybe even a +1. So he is super low just as I suspected. It was really hard for her to find my cervix because of his head being in the way. She actually had to push him up to try and find it. It will be interesting how much longer I last, I am not counting on going into labor anytime in the near future but will be ready just in case.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Something i'm sure we all need to hear.

 Building Your House

An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. He told his employer-contractor of his plans to leave the house-building business to live a more leisurely life with his wife and enjoy his extended family. He would miss the paycheck each week, but he wanted to retire. They could get by.
The contractor was sorry to see his good worker go and asked if he could build just one more house as a personal favor. The carpenter said yes, but over time it was easy to see that his heart was not in his work. He resorted to shoddy workmanship and used inferior materials. It was an unfortunate way to end a dedicated career.
When the carpenter finished his work, his employer came to inspect the house. Then he handed the front-door key to the carpenter and said, “This is your house… my gift to you.”
The carpenter was shocked!
What a shame! If he had only known he was building his own house, he would have done it all so differently.
So it is with us. We build our lives, a day at a time, often putting less than our best into the building. Then, with a shock, we realize we have to live in the house we have built. If we could do it over, we would do it much differently.
But, you cannot go back. You are the carpenter, and every day you hammer a nail, place a board, or erect a wall. Someone once said, “Life is a do-it-yourself project.” Your attitude, and the choices you make today, help build the “house” you will live in tomorrow. Therefore, build wisely — starting now!

Borrowed from
My 37 week photo looks a lot smaller then my 36 week photo. I'm not sure exactly why, part due to him dropping, maybe he was turned more towards my back, my amniotic fluid level might be dropping in preparation for labor. I'm not exactly sure but here it is.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Home visit appointment with my midwife

Midwife appointment went awesome! Everything looked good. BP was good and HR was good. Baby's heart rate was fluctuating between upper 130's- upper 140's. Midwife was very pleased with that. Even though I am technically not 37 weeks if I were to go into labor I can still have my home birth it will just be the assistants name on the certificate rather than the actual midwife. Just as I had suspected baby is super duper low. As in the midwife had a really hard time finding his head because my pubic bone hid it. She was really low when getting the heart beat as well, and it was the actual heart beat she was getting. So now to finish our bathroom remodel and babe can come any time after that. That makes me so much more relaxed about things knowing that if I do go into labor tonight I can still have my home birth. Especially after some of my bouts of contractions lately. I know it isn't labor contractions just my practice contractions but it still is a relief.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Goodbye 2011

Though we did have some good things happen in 2011 I am very glad to see it go. For my records it would probably be numbered among one of my worst years. So here is to hoping that 2012 will be full of a lot more good events and memories. January is going to be our month to do last minute birth preparations and hopefully welcome our new little boy into our family.