Monday, January 26, 2009

16 weeks

Well Im 16 weeks pregnant so I thought it was about time to post a belly shot. This is the first one Ive taken of this pregnancy *gasp*. Ava insisted she show her growing belly as well. LOL And Audrey soon joined in all the fun....see her head? Its not a very good picture so I'll have to take a better shot before the week is over. But here it is.....

Here are some other random pics. Since I havent posted pictures in waaay too long. We still dont have a digi cam, but that should change here in the next week or two. (woohoo!) For now, these were all taken with my MIL camera, which for the record has nothing on my old camera. I miss my camera........
Here we are playing Rock Band at Dereks sisters house. Yes, I know. Awful music selection for little ears. We went with the least offensive songs for Elisa to play along with. She actually got really good by the end. Notice Audrey singing with me :)

Concentrating on those drum notes.........

Girls being silly with Daddy.Here is a random Christmas picture of Audrey. I was trying really hard to get her in her pretty dress. She would not stay still! I thought the ornaments would keep her such luck. Where did my mad photography studio skillz go???? I never got a picture of all 3 in their dresses...bad bad mommy. I still might take them somewhere to get "Chrsitmas pics" done :)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Praying for a.......

boy? Well I have to admit it’s not much of a secret that we would LOVE to be blessed with a little boy. Obviously, another girl would be a blessing too but how about just a healthy baby regardless of the gender? Seems like an obvious prayer request of a parent, right?
For whatever reason in the past week I have ran across 2 separate blogs, through separate ways, that are chronicling or chronicled the journey of sick babies. Last week I began reading the story of little Audrey Caroline. As I sat reading her story I was consumed with the ugly cry. I don’t know if it hit so hard because we have our own little Audrey or if it was because I’m pregnant or because they already had three girls. For whatever reason, the blog just struck a chord with me.
The faith of Angie and her husband (who happens to be one of the singers in Selah) is just amazing! What a strong woman of God she is! Reading through this story made me stop and think….shouldn’t that be our main prayer? Just a healthy baby? And shouldn’t we be just as overjoyed with another girl as we would be with a boy? Judge me if you want but I can’t honestly say that there wouldn’t be disappointment if we go next month and are told that it’s another girl. (Talk about being brutally honest here!) We didn’t plan (or rather allow God to plan) this baby in hopes it would be a boy….just having a boy would be a big perk! I am settled that it may be another girl, what else can I do!?, so I am constantly praying that the Lord prepares our hearts for whatever the gender of this new blessing turns out to be. I am also praying, more than before, for a healthy baby. I’m praying for a heart of excitement (I would have eventually gotten to this point) as soon as the sonographer tells us the gender of this baby. And a heart of gratitude was we find out I’m carrying a healthy baby.
I just assume that I’ll have healthy pregnancies, I’ve never had otherwise. But, when I run across these blogs of other families who have had to experience the pain of something not being perfect, reality hits.
So, if you have some extra time check out the faith of this family in the blog


And please please begin keeping this family and little Harper in your prayers.

I had to come back today and ad this blog to the list of babies to pray for. I cant imagine what they are going through.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


So I just had to get on here and blog about this.
We were on our way home tonight and hit a giant raccoon. We couldnt swerve bc it came out of nowhere and going 70 miles an hour, didnt want to take a chance of flipping off the road. So anyways, we hit a raccoon. It was a loud thud that we could feel under the car. Keep in mind this is a Yukon XL (GMC version of a Suburban) so its not like its close to the ground. We get home and Derek starts examing the car. It knocked a flood light out, busted off some under panning and busted part of the underneath part of the bumper. SERIOUSLY!?!?! This is almost getting comical the random things that keep happening! Derek went back to search for the underpanning in hopes that it hasnt been hit and smashed to pieces and can be repaired. We shall see........

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Faith builders!

I just had to take a minute and blog about our day. God has shown Himself faithful and its so exciting to see Him work! First, Thursday night was family skate night at the local skating rink. Derek wasnt feeling well and Audrey has had a nasty croup type cough at night (only at night) so they stayed home. That left me, Elisa and Ava. We rarely get out just the 3 of us so they found this time to be a treat. The girls skated for a little bit and then we grabbed some food for dinner. I planned on getting them something for dinner at the skating rink but the place only took cash! No credit/debit cards. Weird. I rarely carry cash bc I always use my debit card. Fortunately they let me write a check. So, I had no cash for the snack bar. They were troopers and held out until after skating to eat.
We stopped at Taco Bell on the way home. I was craving a Taco Pizza (mmmmm....sounds good right now!). The girls normally hate Taco Bell and Derek isnt a big fan either. So I normally just go by myself. That night though I convinced the girls to try some nachos. They love nachos at home when I make them, so I figured they'd like Taco Bells too. They did :)
Well Friday night (they ate the nachos Thursday night) Ava woke up crying that her head, legs and arms were aching. I knew what that meant. She was having a dairy reaction to the cheese on the nachos. Dumb me! I cant handle that cheese so of course she couldnt! Let me tell you though....the body aches from a dairy reaction are some of the most painful things Ive ever experienced. This coming from a mom who's had 3 c-sections mind you! So, I knew she was in alot of pain. I gave her some tylenol and rubbed her legs until she fell back to sleep. ALl of this at like 3 in the morning.
She woke up Sat with a headache still. We just assumed it was from the reaction but we could tell she wasnt feeling well. We ran some errands and went to my parents house for a late Christmas with one of my brothers (well everyone was there) and his family. They had been visiting my sister in laws family in Roatan Hondoras. (aka tropical paradise!) Anyways, while we were there she started running a fever. Poor baby. Elisa, who freaks out about anyone being sick immidiatley started panicing about getting sick. So, my parents prayed for Ava to recover quickly and everyone else to be protected from sickness. That put Elisa at peace. Ava went to bed with a fever and.....woke up 100% completely well!!! Praise God!!We still stayed home from church though bc we didnt want to risk taking any sick germs and sharing them throughout kids church and the nursery. Good thing we can listen to the sermon online bc I HATE missing our Pastors teachings. It was so neat to discuss with Elisa how God answered her prayers so quickly! What a way to help build a little girls faith! !
Then, Derek had been looking online this week into more about his car and the timing belt issues. He ran across a website that instructed something to be aligned differently then the manual they had been going by did. So, today he and his dad worked on his car...again. Derek and I have been praying about the car situation everynight. We are fine with only 1 car. Its almost been nice not being able to get out of the house everyday and been forced to stay home. But the gas in a Yukon XL vs the gas in a little Mazda protege is a big difference!!! Plus we hated putting 80+ miles a day on our new car. So, after realigning whatever part it was...the car started!!!! Praise God!!! They drove it around a little and it seems to be doing fine. The only problem that remains is the oil light keeps coming on, eventhough Derek just changed the oil. Other than that...his car works!!! Thank you Lord!! top the day off I did our taxes. This is the first yr that we've ever gotten a W-2 back before Jan 31st, so that was a nice surprise when Derek brought it home last week. We always E-file through Turbo Tax bc it walks me through everything and bc our returns are really basic. Well, our return is MORE than I had anticipated!!! YAY!!!!! Sooooo excited about that! We can pay down some debt PLUS add on our master bedroom and bath like we were planning. We were just going to get the bed/bath started but now we'll be able to almost complete it, if not completely finish it before the baby gets here!! Im so excited!!!
Once we find out what we're having (Feb 11th) I can decide how Im gonna do the nursery (our exsisting bedroom). It will be sooooo nice to have 3 bedrooms instead of just 2. Audrey and the new baby will share a room together until Audrey is big enough to move into the "girls room" upstairs with big sisters. The baby will be in our room at first anyways. Well I guess I should get real...the baby will be in our room at least the first year, lol. Maybe this time around we'll get a baby who will sleep through the night quickly and wont rely on nursing to fall back to sleep. I wont be holding my breath though :)
Well, so much for this being short! I just had to update about all that God has done for us this weekend!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

When it rains..... pours.

What an interesting past week and a half it’s been. Surely God is doing something and we're just trying to see what He's trying to teach us. Since my last post about some goals for 2009 Murphy (as in Murphy’s law) came for a visit. Dave Ramsey always says that as soon as you get gazelle intense about getting out of debt Murphy will pay you a visit. It only took the second week of 2009 for him to come knocking on our door. Nice. It all started last Fri. Derek was on the way to work when I get a call from him saying his car finally gave out and he was stuck on a median in the tiny town of Parker. It took the local police no time to get there and inform him his car had to be moved....NOW. Because we're becoming more and more frugal we didn’t want to think about hiring a tow truck. He was about 40 mins from the house so the thought of that cost well, we didn’t want to go there. After trying to get a hold of his brother to see if her could *ghetto* tow the car home (That would be hooking it up to the back of his brothers truck with a rope and pulling it that way) we realized he (his brother) wasn’t going to wake up. So I was then on a mission to find a tow truck who would tow Derek’s car all the way home. After calling several places and being told they don’t go that far (we live out in the boonies remember) I finally found one. They quoted me a price that was much less than I anticipated (thank you Lord!) and sent a truck to retrieve Little Pooter (as we've so fondly named Derek’s car, the girls love this name mind you). Derek gave them directions back to our house (fortunately the guy had actually heard of our town and knew where it was) and my mom went to pick him up and take him to work. For some reason without Derek escorting them home I just knew they’d get out here and try and pull something on me. Being a woman and all. So I prepared myself. Sure enough the guy pulls up and sits in his truck on the phone for a few mins. I’m thinking he’s planning his ploy to tell me how far it was and they didn’t expect it to be this far out. He gets out with his first words being something to the affect of "yeah, didn’t know it was gonna be this far out". To which I responded by telling him that the guy I talked to on the phone knew exactly where our town was when he quoted us the price. After going back and forth with the guy he finally said they were going to charge us $50 more than I was quoted but they’d knock $30 off of that. Gee...thanks. But whatever, I wasn’t in the mood to argue anymore. I signed the paper and sent the guy off.
The next day we check our bank account to realize some very unexpected transactions had taken place. I was not very pleased and after talking to the bank and the company who completed the transactions settled in my heart it wasn’t a battle worth fighting. So, we're now out around $700 we hadn’t budgeted for or expected that pay period. I guess now it was time to rely on God :) Since that money was a good chunk of what I had budgeted for gas and groceries and we aren’t willing to go into debt (remember we've begun The Total Money Makeover) I prayed (ok and cried) the whole way home asking God to take care of the situation and at least provide a way to get groceries! In the back of my mind I was excited to see what God was going to do to prove himself faithful. When I got home I opened up an envelope with a gift card to Target!!! Derek had taken a survey through our insurance company before Christmas and earned that gift card. I didn’t realize he had selected what store he had wanted it for yet, much less had them send it yet. I was supposed to take the survey too but hadn’t yet. We had decided we were both going to use our gift cards twds getting a new digi camera (since ours broke at the end of summer). Anyway, all of that to say that opening that gift card was such a blessing at just the right time!!! YAY God!!!! I just knew that was one way He was providing grocery money for that pay period. It wasn’t nearly what I budget for groceries, but hey I knew I could get creative and make the money stretch into decent meals for 2 weeks. I was just excited to see God work so quickly!
So, I prayed before making our menus for the 2 weeks, prayed for wisdom when shopping and went to the grocery store. I walked out of the store only spending $10 more than what I had on the gift card!!! YAY for me!
All of that took place on a Sat. The entire day Derek had been working on his car. He and his dad determined that it was the timing belt that needed to replace. Fortunately Derek is not one to pay someone else to do a job he can do! (In this case we saved probably $500) So, he got the timing belt from AutoZone and spent until dark Sunday night putting it on. They finished, went to crank the car up and.....nothing. That’s right, nothing. How discouraging! So, needless to say I was going to be without a car for the week. That was ok, we were still (ok we ARE still) trying to get back into the routine of school for this semester. So, maybe being stuck at home all week was really a blessing in disguise. Friday was the only day we got out of the house. We took Derek to work and spent the day with my mom. We haven’t spent an entire day with Mimi doing nothing in a really long time, so that was nice.
Saturday we had very full day going to 2 birthday parties and a late Christmas get together. We were gone from 9:30 until about 11 that night. Fortunately my energy kept up otherwise I would have been dead by the end of the day. Sunday we had a wonderful service at church and came straight home. Me and the girls really wanted Cicis but my wonderfully frugal husband said no, we aren’t spending money like that anymore. So we settled with a $5 pizza from Little Caesars. Savings: about $15. I guess those things really do add up. And if we continue making those $20 purchases here and there…we’ll never be completely debt free! After lunch Derek and his dad started working on the car again while Audrey and I took a nap. After working on that for a few hours they gave up and couldn’t figure out the problem. I suggested that maybe we should take it into a shop of professionals who could at least diagnose the problem with the motor rather than continue to waste time (and energy) trying to figure it out themselves. I don’t know what Derek has decided though. We’re still praying about whether we should put anymore money into that car or just save and pay cash for another one. That will be awhile though. After we have the Dr and medical bills paid off for this pregnancy. So, we’re looking at late summer before that will even happen. Being stuck without a car until late summer?!?! Ugh. But…thank you Lord for one working new car!!!!
This is getting super long. I doubt anyone is still reading. But if you are you get to hear the rest of the story  Lucky you.
Sunday after Derek was done working on his car we were down at his parents’ house. Ava had found a coin on the bathroom counter and was happily announcing to everyone what she had found. Somehow in the bouncing around the coin ended up being swallowed. Needless to say…I was no very happy with this child. How many times has she been told the story of the past TWO times she swallowed coins as a baby!?!? Did she seriously do it again!??! We figured it was a nickel and it would just pass. She kept complaining that it hurt but we figured it had just irritated her throat. We came home, and she was spitting up phlegm up until bedtime. She didn’t want to eat so we didn’t make her. We laid her down for bed but she came down one more time to tell us her throat hurt. As Derek was taking her back up to bed she vomited everywhere. I went downstairs and googled signs that a coin was lodged. Vomiting was listed a sign to go to the ER to be x-rayed, that a coin was most likely lodged. I called the on-call nurse at their Pediatricians office and was told if she was vomiting she needed to be taken in. As bad as this sounds we didn’t want to take her to an ER that night. That would be an ER co-pay to the tune of $100 plus whatever fees accumulated from whatever they had to do. We just wanted to go to the regular Pedi the next day and have the x-ray done then. We decided (stupidly) to have her sleep with us and wait until the next day. Derek went to get her and I insisted she take a small drink of water before she lay down. I wanted to see if that would stay down. She took a small drink and as soon as it went down….it came back up. Ugh. Ok Ok that was enough to know we needed to take her in. We decided we weren’t going to the closest ER bc, well if you know what hospital that is you know why we didn’t go there. We decided to take her to Presby Allen, 45 mins away bc we’ve always had great service there. It was also closer to my mom who was going to meet me up there. Derek stayed home, as much as he didn’t want to, bc Audrey is still nursing and waking up at night. We didn’t want to subject anyone else to her screaming fits we knew she would have bc she didn’t get to nurse when she woke. (spoiled breastfed baby, lol) So, off we went to the ER. My mom met us up there. I wanted someone else with me plus I knew they would have to x-ray Ava and since I’m pregnant I wouldn’t be able to go in with her. We got there about midnight and to our surprise there was no wait! Woohoo! We got right in. They x-rayed her and sure enough, something lodge at the bottom of her esophagus. We all guessed it was a quarter. Yes, a large quarter. They said they wouldn’t be able to do the retrieval (endoscopy) there, that we were having to be transferred. I knew what was coming next (remember we had been through this, embarrassingly, 2 previous times when she was a baby!). She would have to be transferred by ambulance. CHA-CHING. I debated the nurse insisting she was fine for us to drive her to the other hospital. They told us the Dr wouldn’t sign off on that bc of the risk of something happening in transit. READ: they couldn’t risk the liability if something happened. The nurse told us that when we got the bill for the ambulance if the insurance didn’t cover the ride to fight it. Bc that hospital couldn’t do the procedure and we had to go to another hospital it wasn’t a voluntary ambulance call. It was transfer between hospitals. So, now we wait for that bill. Last time this happened the ambulance ride was $1,000 for our part. So, we get a nice ride in ambulance to Presby Plano. We get there and fortunately they were ready for her! The Pedi gastro-something or other (lol, yes that’s the Drs official title) was already there and they were prepping for surgery. Oh I might add they started an IV at the first hospital in prep for the ambulance ride and surgery. Ava didn’t even cry. She was such a trooper! I was so proud of her. Anyways, right before surgery, at about 3 am, Ava finally fell asleep. This was in-between vomiting spells. Every time she moved at this point she threw up. So, they took her to surgery asleep. This was a total blessing so she didn’t have to go through that scare. The whole surgery process took 4 mins. They let us go back there while she was waking up. It was indeed a quarter. A very very expensive quarter. We ended up finally getting home at 6:30 am. Elisa never woke up and so she wasn’t able to worry about her sister the whole time, praise the Lord! Ava is totally fine now. Hopefully this made a big enough impression on her that no coins will ever go close to her mouth again!
After doing the math and thinking about it. I can add another $750 (individual deductible), $100 (ER co-pay), 20% of all the procedures done at both ERs and the surgery, plus the ambulance ride. I don’t even want to think about the grand total. Let’s just say Murphy has made one expensive visit over the past week. Now we trust that God will provide the money to pay everything off! Dave wasn’t kidding when he said the minute you decide to get serious with will start to rain. Guess that why you have your emergency fund in place. I’m thinking that emergency fund wont take care of all of these expenses though.