Monday, October 17, 2016

To be continued.... continues

So it has been almost two years since I stopped mid sentence of my last post and write, "to be continued". So let's get back to where we left off and what caused me to stop writing.  Because so much time has passed I may not get in as much detail or even remember some of the things I was going to say, but I will do my best to catch you up. So I left off talking about my last round of IVF.

After out final round of IVF, matt and I were finally given good news! It worked!  Matt and I knew Addie would be super excited because she wanted so badly to be a big sister, but we wearnt sure how Tate would take the news. He really wanted a dog and knew if we had a baby, the dog would have to wait.

When we broke the news to Tate and Addie, Addie was of course excited.  Tate three himeself on the floor and said "NOooo! I wanted a dog"! After a while he said he would be ok with it as long as the baby was a boy.

I was super excited but a little nervous about starting over. The space between this child and Addie was going to be about 7 1/2 years. I knew I would not go through this again and so unless we got twins, this baby would be all by them self. I think part of me knew things would work out how they should and god knew that too.

I kept teasing matt that part of me felt like we were going to have twins and both embryos took. He brushed it off and reminded me the doctor said the canes were slim. Sure enough we went in for our first ultra sound and their were two separate sacs. Because it's been so long, I do t remember exactly how the doctor told us, but it was something like "here is the baby and here is the baby". I think matt was a little in shock.  After we left we sent a picture of the ultra sound to matts parents, who Really didn't know how to read the ultra sound. I don't think matts mom ever had any since it wasn't required back then or even available with most her kids.  When they saw the picture, they didn't know what it was and CLAUDE thought it was a picture of a squirrel. I'm not sure why he thought that, but we got a good laughs out of it. He thought the two sacs were the squirrels eyes. So when we finally told him it was our ultra sound, we had him guess what the two dots (eyes) were. It took both CLAUDE and Coleen forever to figure it out. We may have had to even told them. Of course they were super excited.

We then headed to ny sisters house to show the kids and my family. Again, Addie was beyond excited and Tate just wanted to hurry and play soccer after our announcement. We actually have both announcements ( pregnancy and twins) on video. Tate is halarious to watch.

My pregnancy had a little bit of a rough start. Matt travels a for work and of course while out of town, I woke up bleeding heavily in bed. I was freaking out because I thought I had to if lost one or both of the babies. We knew of the risk with twin pregnancies but I had felt so confident that I was to have twins. It was really early in the morning, like 2am, I called my sister and her husband and a friend came to give me a blessing. I couldn't sleep that night. I bled for hours and was sick thinking about losing my babies.

That morning my friend went with me for support since matt was out of town. I was so relived to here not one, but two heartbeats. Both twins were fine however, I had a clot near one of the sacs that put the babies at a greater risk of miscarriaging.  The hard part was it would be likely that I would continue to bleed until the clot past and the clot may not pass until delivery.  Long story short, I bled a lot that first trimester and bad. There was one particular time I went to the dance studio sat and my car and suddenly blood gushed everywhere. It got all over my pants and seat. Each time this happened, I worried I was about to lose my babies, but every time they were ok. By second trimester the bleeding wasn't as bad. The clot was still there but it hadn't gone down in size and because the babies had grown bigger than the clot, there was less of a risk.

At some point we learned the sex of the twins. I was hoping for two boys or a girl and a boy. We at least needed one boy for Tate so that he wouldn't be to heartbroken about not getting his dog.  Obviously, we don't get to decide what we get and we learned both babies were girls. I was excited regardless, but felt bad for Tate. I told the kids we would announce the babies gender in a fun way, but I was a little worried how that would turn out now that both were girls.

I got two boxes and filled them with pink helium balloons. One box said Baby A and the other said Baby B. Tate and Addie each stood by a box and opened them at the same time. When the boxes were opened and pink balloons can put of both of them, Tate fell to the floor crying. We were recording everything that was taking place but Tate was so devistated that we had to turn off the camera. I think we deleted it too because it broke our hearts to see him so sad. He just really wanted a brother or dog and he was getting neither. Don't worry, now that the twins are here he is the BEST BIG BROTHER
and loves them so much!

By third trimester I was no longer bleeding but was pretty miserable. I have the shortest waist that the twins had nowhere to go. Both Tate and Addie had come early so I figured they had a good chance of coming early as well. By 31 weeks I started having some braxtonhicks. The doctor looked over everything and said I looked great and hadn't really dialating much.  Matt was to leave out of town to work the next day. That was his last trip he had scheduled until after the twins arrived. The doctor felt pretty confident that I would be fine, but gave me some steroids just in case. The steroids were to help the twins lungs develop faster in case they came early. Because things looked so good I told matt to go ahead with his last trip scheduled. He would only be gone a couple days.

So, that is about where I left off. I was writing my last entry the day before matt was to come home.  During that day I had several contractions, but told myself they would go away. By that evening I decided I would distract myself by writing in our blog about our year thus far. This was December 11, 2014. Tate had come home from a basketball game and wanted to feel the babies move. I wasn't feeling great but was happy he was getting excited so I let him push in my belly to feel the twins. . Finally I sent him to bed and decided the distraction wasn't working.  My contractions were still coming and going so  I decided I would just lay down and rest a bit to see if they would go away.   They had to eventually stop. My doctor was confident I would make at least 2 more weeks and matt was out of town.

By 1am I started worrying. My contractions were stronger and more consistent. I was now trying to decide if I just get in my car and drive myself to the hospital or call someone first to come stay with my kids while I went. I felt better about making sure someone was home with them in case on of the woke up and I wasn't there. I knew I could t call my parents because it would take too long for them to get there and my sister had just had a baby the month prior, so I didn't want to bother her. This left me with calling our good friends the Johns. By 1:30 I finally caved in and called them. I was so embarrassed but they were so great and headed right over. Brandi was even nice enough to drive me and Steve slept on our couch so that someone was with my sleeping kids.

As we were driving Brandi asked if I had called matt. She could see I was in a lot of pain. I told her no because I was sure I would be fine and they would just be sending me home. Luckily, she was thinking a lot clearer than me and told me to call him. I called matt and there were a couple times I had to put him on hold in between contractions. They were so painful! I told him not to worry though because I was sure they could get things under control once I got to the hospital. I think Brandi wasn't as sure.

When we got to the hospital Brandi stoped at the front doors and we began walking in. A security guard brought a wheel chair for me so I wouldn't have to walk anymore. After they got me in and situated the nurses seemed confident that they could stop my contractions. Matt wasn't suppose to get in the later that day or evening. He was worried he would miss their birth but I assured him they would probably be able to stop the contractions and it would work out. By that time, he decided he had better try to get a flight home sooner. Because he was so far away from home though there was no way he would be able to get in before 11:00 am. I told him not to worry and we would call him once they checked me out.

Ok, by now I was in soooo much pain. I think I started realizing I was actually going into labor. Someone finally came in to check my cervix and I was waiting for them to tell me they would be able to stop the contractions and/or at least hold things off until my husband arrived, but instead I was told the first baby was coming now!

Now I was stressing a little because not only was matt out of town, but so was my doctor who was to deliver the twins. I know would be lucky if the doctor in call would even make it on time. This freaked me out to say the least.

Thank goodness for Brandi who made sure I called my parents, in laws and matt again. By then I was  not thinking too clearly and just wanted my epidural!!!! I almost wasn't able to get one because I was too close to delivery.

My mom showed up right as they were willing me to the delivery room. They doctors were really great because they let both Brandi and mom come in. Usually they will only allow one person in since it is a high risk delibory with it being twins. Brandi was able to record the delivery for matt and give him a play by play of what was going on and my mom could be there to stand in for Matt. Even though I would had preferred matt to be there, it worked out great having both my mom and Brandi.
Lucky for me, the doctor on call from my OB office arrived right on time. Baby A came out and seemed to be doing really well. She was the smallest of the two. Baby B came out with the cord around her neck. They had a bit of a hard time getting her to breath but eventually were able to and rushed her to the nicu.

I wish I remembered the times of everything. I think we arrived to the hospital around 2 something and both twins were out by 3:15am. That just comes to show you how far I really was by the time I arrived at the hospital. Matt didn't arrive until around 11am. He missed the whole thing and felt horrible. We both had to sort of laugh at how it all worked out though because the scenario for us so well.

Both twins spent women time in the NICU. We named baby A Jadyn (well Tate named her) and baby B Ashtyn (Brandi and matt actually can easily up with that name on a camping trip we went in together). It was sort of funny he Brandi was part of the naming process and delivery.

I can't believe it has almost been 2 years since these events. Life sure has changed. It has been an adjustment to say the least. Even between the and now so much has happened. Tate was found to have an incredibly beautiful voice and now takes voice lessons. He is so talented in music and continues to play soccer and golf.

Addie had a successful year on herncomp team and decided to work even harder the following year. She did her first solo and worked her way to the top team this year. I'm amazed at all Shen has done at her age.

Ashtyn and Jadyn are super busy. They are running around destroying any clean spot in the house. I can't keep up with them. Ashtyn looks exactly like matt as a toddler. I think her personality is a lot like matts ad well. In many ways she is a mini Tate. She loves to play and be wherever the action is. She loves to play and tease, just like tate.

Jadyn is defiantly more fisety. She looks a lot like me as a toddler but is a total Addie when it comes to personality. She is defiantly more cautious and scared of things. She also likes to push bottoms and see what she can get away with. It's been fun seeing how different they are and watching them interact more with each other.

I wish I could say they play all day together but I think a majority of the day is fighting, biting and hair pulling. It does warm  my heart though when they play well. It is the cutest thing to see them learn how to share and give hugs to each other. Usually the hugs are given to tell the other twin sorry for being mean, but it's still super cute.

Way back in my last post, inmentioned a little about my dad and his cancer possibly coming back. This has probably been on of the hardetvthings these last two years. We learned my dad's cancer has come back, gotten in his blood and moved to the lungs. Sadly, there isn't much we can do. Fornnow, the doctors are able to control it while it's controllable, but only time will tell us how long that is. We have been so blessed that these past two years have been fairly easy. He has had some procedures and a few scary things, but overall has really been able to enjoy histhe health he has. I'm so glad he is living it up while he can and spending that time with my mom and family. I will try to do better at keeping this updated regarding that.

Catch up to the end of 2014

(This post was actually written in December of 2014, but never posted)

I have been so bad at keeping up on this blog.  Which is sad, because It is so great to be able to look back and relive many of these memories.  My kids are getting so big.  I sometimes forget what it was like when they were toddlers.  Now that they are older, there is so much they can do on their own.  I am always amazed at what they can do. Then there are of course the harder days when hormones, emotions and independence take over (and not my hormones).... Those days aren't the most enjoyable.  However, it helps you appreciate the other days that much more.

Tate is my most determined child right now.  He has really gotten into soccer and golf this year.  There has been times off and on where he gets motivated to wake up an hour earlier so that he can practice these things.  In the summer it was soccer and golf.  Right now he has been practicing his soccer and basketball in the morning before school.  Its pretty cold some mornings in December, even if there isn't any snow.  He does it though.  I just don't think there are many kids who would do what he does.  He also has been really good at getting homework done right after school (or during).  Of course there is the motivation of being able to play with friends.  But it works and I rarely have to get on his case with homework.  He has created such good habits at such a young age.  I am very proud of him.

Addie is a bit of a diva.  She is totally all girl and my little buddy.  There are times though her emotions get to be a little too much, even for me.  I have learned with her you have to be very careful on how you approach things.  A good example of this was this summer.  We were going to a park for a picnic, playing and rocket shooting.  There were a lot of trails at this park as well.  Obviously we would dress casual and in clothes that can get dirty.  Addie chose her clothes and came downstairs ready to go.  When I saw her, I had to stop and think really hard about what I was going to say to her and how.  She was wearing this brand new white lace shirt and white pants.  It was a pretty nice outfit and did you read that it was ALL WHITE! Very carefully I told her how much I loved that outfit, but it would be so sad if it got ruined since we would be playing in grass, dirt and playgrounds.  I recommended we find another outfit more suitable for where we were going.  I guess I blew it, because that set her off.  All all heard was how this was the ONLY outfit she waned to wear and had been planning on wearing it all day.  It was her favorite and there was no other outfit that could take it's place.  With that, Addie said she was not going.  She stormed to her room and closed the door.

The drama lasted for quite some time.  Of course we ended up being late.  Eventually after telling her we were going regardless if she did or not, she finally gave in.  She said she would change and meet us in the car.  We waited and eventually she came out.  But this time (remember its mid summer) she came out in long warm pants and a long sleeve shirt.  She was dressed for winter.  I wasn't sure what to do.  It was going to be a hot day.  I chose to mention my concern but let her decide.  "Addie", I said.  "It is going to be pretty warm outside.  Are you sure you want to wear that".  You could tell she did not like to be questioned.  She jumped in the car and said "YES, I hate short sleeves because the grass is itchy and it will make me uncomfortable.  I know what I'm doing".  So I left it at that.

Addie is very strong willed.  But I know it will be a good thing in the future.  She doesn't take crap from anybody.  As long as she is staying strong for the right reasons, she will do some great things.

Besides the drama Addie has actually amazed me a ton this year.  She really wanted to be part of a dance competition team.  This requires many hours of dance and dedications.  I was worried with her going from half a day of kindergarten to a full day of school, in first grade, then to 2-3 hours of dance after.  She begged and begged.  Part of me was worried that if she didn't do it, then she would be so much more behind the girls who did and not have a chance at making team in the future.  We talked several times about how much time this would take and if you commit, you commit.  You can't quite because it cost lots of money and you have a team depending on you.  My strong willed girl wasn't going to step down.  She wanted to do it.

I expected many melt downs,  complaining and struggling to keep up with school.  Instead, she followed her brother in developing good habbits.  She goes to the studio and before her dance classes, finishes her homework and eat her food I pack for her.  She then gets dressed for her classes and dances.  There are days she is tired but she rarely complains and I have been so impressed with how well she has kept up with everything.  I am even more surprised at how well she has been doing in school.  Addie struggles much more than Tate ever did.  However, she has continued to work on her reading and math and has improved sooo much!  This is where her string will will pay off.

Both of my children have grown up so much. Later I will share some more amazing things they have done.

Near the end of last year, we had news of my dads cancer.  Things have been going well as they thought they actually got it all.  However, this Nov. we have learned that that may not be the case.
 We won't know for sure til end of January.  This is hard, especially because of the waiting.  There is also many other changes that have taken place, or that are about to, and we need to focus on getting those things in order first.  I try to not think too much about it as it would not be good for me to right now.  We have huge change taking place in our own family (Matt, I , Tate and Addie).  Since there isn't anything we can do but wait, my plan is to adjust to our new changes as soon as possible and have everything on our to do list completed before the end of the year.  Depending on the news of my dad, I will then hopefully be able to put in the time I want for him as well.  Until I know for sure, I would rather think everything is still good.  I think thats the best way to get through these next couple months.

Now for the BIG change in mine and Matts little family.  For the past few years or more, we have struggled with infertility.  This is crazy because Tate and Addie came with now effort at all.  Actually the opposite of trying.  We wanted to wait for the kids to get a little older before we tried agian and then  the move to califonia happened.  Once we moved to Californina we decided to wait a little longer and get settled their.  Eventually we decided that we would see what happened regarding adding to our family.  after months of this, nothing happened.  My body started to take on some weird changes and 30 happened.  We stepped up the game and began using ovulation test and so forth.  Nothing.  After a year of this, once we moved back to Utah, we decided to take the next step.  We started going to an infirtility clinic.

At first I thought regardless of the outcome, I would be ok.  I knew we were blessed with our two children already and I didn't want to be ungrateful.  However, as the process continued, it became more hard emotionally.  I feel I can't even complain knowing that others have gone through this from the beggining of their journey to build a family.  There are those who never figure out why their bodies won't create a baby.  Even though adoption is a blessing of it's own, its hard feeling like something is wrong with you and knowing your can't have your own biological child.  I cannot imagine what those indiviuals went through after getting a small taste of my own struggles.

Each time we went in for something I figured it was going to work.  Both Tate and Addie came so easily.  We started with clomid (fertility drugs).  We did this 3 or 4 times.  Each time failed to help us get our baby.  The next step was artificial insemination.  This had to work as the process was much more complex.  3 times and no baby.  By this time I started to be doubtful.  Our next and final step was IVF.  Preparing for this, your body has to go through a lot.  There are alot of injections you have to take to control your body and get it to develope the eggs you need.  It isn't easy and doesn't make you feel the best.

We did our first round and it failed.  It had now been over three years and I was a mess.  I didn't think I would take it so hard.  But we were nearing the end of this journey and knew this would determine if we move on with the family we have or start all over and bring in a new baby.  So much was unknown and I wanted to know what was to come and move on.  It was emotionally draining.

In between our first and second round of IVF my doctor noticed some polips in my uterus and I had a small procedure to remove those. We only had 1-2 more chances wirh IVF, so for our next round we chose to put in two embryos.  Matt and I decided this was it.  We needed to move on if this time the embyos didn't take.  We now were to the point were we were literally starting all over (in the baby stage) if we had another baby.  There was also the emotion of just feeling emotionally exhausted.

To be continued ......

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Typical driving conversation....

My daughter is a genius!!! Ok, not really.  But she sure is cute!

So the other day we were driving in the car and Addie asks me "How do you spell UDA"?
UDA is Addie's dance studio. It is also known as Utah's Dance Artists, but mostly called (and logo) UDA.

I answer, "U-D-A".  Addie yells at me, "No MOM.  How do you spell UDA"?  I repeat my answer a second time only to make her get even madder.  "Mom", she said, "You don't get what I'm asking.  Just spell UDA for me"!

By this time I'm getting a little flustered because she is getting so mad.  I calmly ask her if she knows what UDA stand for?  She paused and though about it.  "Addie, UDA is only the initials of the real name of the studio".  Then I gave her examples using both her and her brothers name then telling her what their initials would be.  "So you see, the U stands for Utah, the D stands for Dance and the A stands for Artists.  Therefore You spell UDA the way it sounds, because its just the initials"!

"Oh, I get it" she finally said.  I was happy to end this conversation......  But Addie had another question.  "Well then, what does "Y" stand for?".  "Addie", I said "There isn't a Y in UDA".  Addie replies, "I know mom, but what does it stand for"?...... Basically she still didn't get it and this went on for another 5 min.

After a few moments of silence Addie blurts out, "It's kind of gross how babies come out of moms"! I just reply, "Yes, it is" and hope she ends the conversation.  Of course she doesn't!  "It's just really weird", she says.  "Why can't they just always come out of the belly"?  I am trying to end the conversation the best I can, so I just reply "Its more convenient when it comes out the other way"! "But why", she asked.  I just tell her that when they cut the belly open it takes a lot longer for the mom to heal and recover.  When it comes out the other way its just better.

Addie thinks about it and then replies, "I still don't understand how dads seed gets in your belly"!  Then Tate in a matter of fact way says, "Mom just swallows it"!!!! This sort of made me laugh, for many reasons....
Now remember we have been driving in the car this whole time.  I was planning on just dropping the kids off once we got home, because I had to run to the store.  Right after tate makes his wonderful statement I am saved because I pulled into our driveway.... I quickly tell the kids to get out of the car because I have to go.  "But wait", Addie said. "Is that true, you swallow it"? Only my kids, would ask this and so you know, they DO NOT know where dads so called seed comes from.  They only know dad has a swimming seed he sort of plants in me or at least that's the easiest way i can explain it to them for now is what I tell them.  I can't lie to my kids because I don't want them to hear the truth from someone else, but I also didn't want to have this conversation at that moment.  I simply reply, "No, thats not correct.  But I have to go so if you have to know now, go ask your father"!

They never did ask Matt but Im sure very soon the conversation will come up again so for now I will just prepare myself the best I can.

To Teach or Not To Teach.....

As a parent, I chose to teach my children the proper names of their body parts.  Namely their privates.  I didn't want them to be uncomfortable when talking about their body or if they had questions.  I felt calling things by their proper names would help with this.  For some reason this choice has seemed to backfire a bit.  Both my Tate and Addie are almost too comfortable talking about their private parts.

Obviously I have mentioned time and time again that even though we know the correct names, that doesn't mean you go saying it everywhere you go.  Sometimes out of respect for those around you, you can just say private parts.  My kids have no such filter. 

When they both first started using the proper names,  Addie kept getting confused and would call her private a P**** (Not that it's a bad word, but out of respect for those who don't want to read it).  I remember one day in particular when she informed me her penis was hurting.  I corrected her, but reminded her that she could just say "private" instead.  Tate was just as open.   While playing soccer in the backyard with friends, I would often hear him announce when his privates (but using the correct name) got kicked or bumped.  I started worrying what other parents were going to start thinking and hoped that eventually they would realize when or when these proper names were appropriate to use.

A couple years later, they still don't get it.  Recently we went on a family trip and took our kids to eat at a restaurant.  The tables were on sand and overlooked the ocean.  It was a beautiful setting, but my kids quickly found how to best annoy each other.  The started kicking sand under the table.  Next thing you know tate is yelling loudly at Addie, "You kicked my P****"!!!! Addie laughed and this made Tate mad.  He then kicked her and she screamed, "Tate kicked me in the V******"!!!  Matt and I tried to calm them both down but before they stopped, each child had to loudly tell us several more time where the other kicked them.  Finally things calmed down and our food came.  

As we continued eating the subject changes.... Well sort of.  The kids wanted us to know that they knew just what to do if a burglar broke into our house.  Not thinking much of it, we asked them how?  Proud and loud one of them said, "I would kick them in the P**** or V******"!  At this point I'm sure the tables next to us were wondering what kind of parents we were.  I was just a little embarrassed (understatement).   Obviously we looked at this as another teaching opportunity and told them that there would probably be smarter things to do first then to go and attack the burglar.  If you can get out of the house and run.... do that! If not, and you have a  phone near by or could get to one without being seen, you should call 911.  Of course Addie claims she has a better "Ideal" (Addie says ideal instead of idea no matter how many times we have corrected her).  We asked her what that idea was and she said, "I would first call a neighbor and then tell them to call 911 for me".  Although this wasn't as embarrassing as the kids using proper names out loud for all to hear, it did cause me to wonder.  Addie is so funny.

You never know what conversations are kids will bring up or what they are going to say.  They defiantly keep us on the edge of our chairs.  I still think it's good they know the proper name but with my kids it always seems they can turn a good idea to a questionable one.  lol

Friday, January 3, 2014

The end of 2013

BE WARNED, there are some graphic pics in this post.  It seems like this is becoming a tradition in our New Years Post...

As you can see from earlier post, we have had a great year in many ways.  But that isn't to say we haven'd had our trials.  One of our biggest trials has actually been for the past few years, which is infertility.  We have been so blessed to have our two children, so by no means am I complaining.  Neither Tate or Addie were planned, but I can't help but wonder if we didn't have them when we did, if we would have been able to have them at all.  If we waited to have kids, there is also the chance that they would have ended up very far apart in age.  This would have been sad since they do have each other to enjoy while growing up (even though they fight pretty much 24/7).  I have to believe that God played a huge part in the timing of it all.

In 2012 Matt and I decided to go to an infertility specialist.  Both Matt and I were checked out and nothing stood out too alarming as to why I couldn't get pregnant.   Because we had been trying for over a year already, I was getting worried since my other two were getting older.  I didn't want there to be too big of an age gap between the youngest and older two.  I also decided I didn't want any regrets of not trying everything I could to have another baby incase it never happened.  For this reason we moved forward with our options and months later we started our first round of artificial insemination.  We would try 3-4 times.  Our doctor was very positive this would do the trick, but on our last and final AI we learned it had not worked.  By now it was Nov. 2013.  I hated feeling sorry for myself, especially knowing how lucky we are to have our two.  But I also have to admit that each time I went through AI and it failed, I got a little more sad and more discouraged.

We went in to meet with our doctor.  Matt and I learned that his insurance would cover almost all of in vitro if we chose to go that route.  The problem was his insurance would change by the new year so we had to get moving quickly.  Once again I thought about how I wanted "no regrets".

If we had to pay the full cost of in vitro we wouldn't do it.  We already had two children and with the cost there is no guarantee.  In fact the percentage of getting pregnant with in vitro is much smaller then you would think.  It is only a 30-35% chance for women under the 35.  Since everything would pretty much be covered it was a no brainer so we went forward with in vitro.

In vitro put me on an emotional roller coaster.  I began the treatments the following day after meeting with my doctor.  Shots everyday and blood test every other.  During this process the shots you inject in yourself cause your ovaries to enlarge EXTRA big.  I was super uncomfortable and bloated.  I could hardly bend over and had no clue, til then, what in vitro puts your body through.  Not only physically, but mentally.

Once again we were all very hopeful but again the treatment failed.  I never thought I would have taken it as hard as I did.  It was a huge let down.  We have enough embryo's for at least one more in vitro cycle but I hate getting my hopes up.  It's especially hard knowing this will be our last try.

During all of this self pity I had no clue what else was about to unfold.  During my in vitro cycle my father noticed a lump in his back growing at an extremely fast rate.  He went to get it checked and the findings were not good.

My parents decided to wait to tell me of any of this as they did not want the stress to cause me not to get pregnant.  They would feel too bad if they told me and I didn't get pregnant, out of fear that it was a result caused by the stress.  The waited until a few days after I found out I wasn't pregnant and a couple days before my dad was to head in for surgery.  I respect them for that decision.

My dad had cancer.  The tumor they found was at a stage 3 and they would not be able to tell if it spread until they took it out.  Even then, it would be unknown if it got into the blood because this kind of cancer will not show in blood test.  Enough of my self pity, I now was filled with the pain for my dad and the fear of the unknown.

In Dec. my dad went in for surgery to have the tumor removed.  It was the size of a grapefruit and until they could fully dissect the tumor we would have to wait for results to see if the cancer had spread.  This also meant that they would have to leave the hole in his back opened in case they needed to go back in.  They covered it with sort of a plug looking thing with a tube attached to a machine he would have to carry around.  All through Christmas my poor dad had to walk around with a tube coming out of his back carrying a bag with a machine attached.  He was super uncomfortable.

We were so relived to learn the cancer had not spread.  There is still a small chance it got in the blood, but most likely they got it out.  Right before the new year they were able to sew his back up and when it heals in the next month he will begin radiation.

Here is a picture of my dads back with the plug/tube thing and a picture of what it looked like when they took it out.  Not pretty.

I love my dad and this scare really got  to me.  I feel so blessed that right now things are looking the way they do. I know things could be far worse than they are now.

My mom also sent us in for a scare shortly after Christmas when she got in a car accident with a bus.  The bus hit her on the driver side.  Her car was totaled and she defiantly sot some bruises and soreness.  I happened to call her right after she got in the accident and headed over to help.  She seemed pretty shooken up and I knew my dad wasn't feeling his best either so I wanted to help as much as I could.  I have to admit that for reasons like this, I am so happy to be back in Utah close to family.  I can't imagine being too far away to help and check in on them.  As much as I miss cali and as much as family can get overbearing at times, I know I wouldn't change a thing.  Being close to them and building the memories we can because we live close, is something that is irreplaceable.

It will be interesting to see what this new year will bring.  So much is in the air.  I am looking forward to it though, and hope I can appreciate all we have been given more because of the lessons I have learned thus far.

Welcome 2014!!!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

2013 Round Up still Continues...

 In August the kids started school.  Addie had her first day of kindergarten and Tate was a third grader at a new school.  I transferred the kids to Charter school in hope that it would be a better fit for Tate.  He wasn't excited about the uniforms but I actually thought it was sort of cute.  So far the school has been great and I think it was a good move for both Tate and Addie.

Every 3 years I do a big birthday for the kids.  This year Addie got her big birthday which was a hit.  She wanted to do a Fashion Show theme.  The kids all got to choose their own dress to model and my nieces did their makeup.  We practiced our fashion walks and turns and took our fashion photos.  Near the end when parents showed up the girls put on a fashion show for them.  I created a runway on our basement and turned on some music.  They all had a good time and it was fun watching the girls pretend to be models.

In October we had our Halloween Kid Party.  Halloween is my favorite holiday and I love getting all into it and letting the kids join in all the fun as well.  Sadly I didn't get many pictures of the decorations, but we hosted it in our unfinished basement.  I hung lanterns all ober and had tables set up for food and crafts.  The kids played pumpkin bowling with liters of soda in our front yard.  My friend and her husband were over the games. We rotated groups since it was such a large amount of kids. Towards the end of the last transition, I went out to see how the pumpkin bowling was going.  When I walked outside it was a mad house. There were pumpkins being thrown in the air and seeds everywhere.  Then I caught a glimpse of my friends husband shaking a litter of soda, throwing it int he air and as soon as it hit the ground it shot off like a rocket.  Soda everywhere.  I wasn't thrilled about the mess but the kids were loving it so I gave in.  I also have to admit seeing all the chaos was rather funny.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2013 Round Up Continue...

In June Addie graduated Pre-school. This is also when she announced she wanted to be a captain of a ship when asked "What do you want to be when you grown up".

June is also dance recital time. 2013 was exceptionally fun because I taught dance at my sisters dance studio.  I've missed dance and using my creativity, being a dance teacher gave me the opportunity to bring both of these back into my life.  I taught one Preschool Creative Ballet Class and 3 Dance With Me (age 18 months - 3 years old) classes. It was a blast and Addie seemed to enjoy having me be a teacher at the studio as well.  The theme for the recital was Fairytales, Fables and Folklore's.  Addie was in 3 dances Noah's Ark, Star Constellations and Gingerbread Man.  She did great and LOVES dance!  My dance class did "Princess and The Pea".  It was fun because I used my creativity to create a huge bed for the stage scenery. It turned out awesome and my little dances looked so cute on stage.

In July we headed to Northern California to San Francisco.  Here we met up with our good friends the Johnson's, from Southern Cali.  While we visited San Francisco we went to a magic show where Tate and I got to go on stage for a couple of different tricks.  Tate was hilarious on stage.  I don't even remember what he did, but he was just being Tate and everyone in the audience was laughing at him.  We also took the kids to Alcatraz which we weren't sure how it would be but the kids were great. Tate actually really enjoyed it and had lots of questions about the prison when our tour was over.  We also went to an awesome park at the Golden Gate park and saw the Golden Gate bridge. It was such a fun vacation and so nice being able to spend a few days with them and their kids. 

After San Francisco we headed to Yosemite for the Snow Family Trip.  It was so beautiful there and Matt and I hiked The Half Dome, which was wicked scary.