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Can I Tell You A Secret?

Can I tell you a secret?

  • I hate 'Throwback Thursday'.  I don't want to see your old pictures, I just don't care.  Sorrynotsorry.  I avoid IG on Thursday's, it just isn't worth being irritated over.
  • This is the first year in a very very VERY long time that I've been itching to put my Christmas decorations up before Thanksgiving.  If we weren't hosting Andy's family for Thanksgiving I just might have given in to my whim.  But instead I'm respecting the bird (also, I'd be sick of seeing the 'clutter' a week or two before Christmas and be joensing to take it all down early).
  • I used to hate MMA/UFC fighting, it was so gross and violent and just awful to watch. And then, out of nowhere, I started liking it.  What?!?  That is so not me - I'm a girly girl!  I watched it just last weekend when Andy was gone to an away game with his buddies for the weekend.  Here I was, all by myself, watching MMA fighting.  Bizarre.
  • I started drinking pop again after almost a year without it.  #loser  And when did I start?  After I got pregnant this time.  To my defense, I didn't know I was pregnant, but once I found out I was I didn't stop drinking it.  So dumb.  And now I'm addicted again.  I need to stop.  Again.
  • I gained 10lbs while pregnant.  Want to know how I gained 10lbs?  By eating all the crap I could get my hands on!  In the first few weeks I gained 5lbs because I was starving all.the.time.  I'd eat a meal and be starving, stomach growling, an hour later.  After that passed I would grab a sweet snack in between meals.  Baby liked sweets.  So now I need to curb that, too.  What a pain.  And the whole time I was gaining I thought "no biggie, I'll be breastfeeding this baby, too, so the weight will fall off again."  And now look, no baby to nurse so the weight won't be just 'falling off'.  It's going to suck trying to lose these 10lbs, and then to lose another 15 like I wanted to do before getting pregnant. 
  • It just dawned on me this year how dumb it is that the Elf on the Shelf does mischievous things around the house when the whole point of that little guy is to keep kids from being naughty.  Seriously, how silly is that? So this year our Elf will not be making messes and not being wrapping toilets and he will only be doing good and nice things. 
What secret are you willing to share with me?

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Random Thursday

A couple of weeks ago we went up to the Big City for my integrated screening.  It's a big hospital, 'thee' hospital to go to for major things (hello, my dad's brain injury for one!).  So, tons and tons of people are going through there every single day.  So, when I registered in the OB area for my ultrasound the receptionist asked me if I'd travelled from West Africa in the past few months.  Then when I checked in for my blood draw 30 minutes later THEY asked me if I'd travelled to West Africa in the past few months.  So crazy, just shows the sign of the times.  There were a few active cases of Ebola in the states at that time so of course everyone was on heightened alert about it.


Have you watched the show 'Slednecks' on MTV?  OMG, you MUST watch it!  It's my new guilty pleasure!!!  Those kids, they are cray cray and crack me up! And it's hard to go an episode without them getting naked because they lost a bet of some kind!  Bah ha ha!!! It's awful television but SOOO fun to watch!


Brenner Joe is home today, tonsillitis.  Last night he fell asleep on the couch about 4:30, didn't want to eat supper so went straight to bed at 6:00 and slept until after 6:00 this morning.  He did have a low-grade temperature but Tylenol took care of that.  Today he is acting fairly normal, right now he is flopping around on the couch, so not too sick.  Got his first dose of Amoxicillin in him, he'll take that for 10 days.  As long as he doesn't get another fever he'll be back to school tomorrow.  It's funny how it started as a cough here and there then that fever hit and knocked him out.  He never complained of a sore throat.  It's been fun having him home with me today, I've missed hearing his chatter all day long.


Thanksgiving is exactly ONE WEEK AWAY!!!!  I CAN'T WAIT!  Wednesday night we'll have supper at my folk's house with them and my sister's family.  Thursday Andy's family is coming here.  I love cooking a big meal for everyone, so looking forward to that!  Of course, everyone brings a side dish so I'm not doing everything myself, that's always helpful.  Andy's brother is smoking a turkey breast this year so I'm not even doing the bird!  Going to miss that smell wafting out of the kitchen this year but everything else will smell good, too.  And I cannot wait for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!  I just love love love watching it!


Little Tater is such a big boy!  He can walk behind the walker all by himself now!  It's such a fast one, even on carpet, so I've never really used it with the older boys too much.  But the other night Aiden was holding the front of while Tate walked behind it so it wouldn't go fast.  Then last night he just pulled himself up to it and started walking with it!  He could control it really well and never took a tumble!  Walking by himself won't be far behind now!  I've tried holding his hands and walking with him but he likes to look up at me and smile big cheesey smiles at me and doesn't focus on the task at hand, silly boy!


Next Saturday is my mom, sister and my annual Christmas shopping day!!!  OMG, I am so ready for this!  Can't wait, always a hoot of a fun time!


I have never ever gone Black Friday shopping.  I've gone shopping on Black Friday, but not at any crazy early time to get a good deal.  This year that might change.  We are looking for tablets for the boys and the one we want to get is on sale at 8p.m. Thursday night. I am 100% against those poor workers having to work on Thanksgiving, 100%!!! But, if they're already going to be there anyway....   I'm going to go get the deal.  And brave the crazies!!!  I'm scared!  Anyone think I can get the same deal online at the same time?? It's WalMart.  I would much rather order online than go stand in line at the store but don't want to miss out on the deal by doing it that way. So what do you think???  Any seasoned Black Friday shoppers out there that can offer me some advice??


That's enough random for one day.  Have a good one!

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Life Changes


And just like that, life takes a left turn.

I miscarried the baby.  Monday I had a regular appointment, was 14 weeks along, and my dr. couldn’t find the heartbeat using the doppler. So she pulled out the office ultrasound machine, again, couldn’t find the heartbeat.  I then went over to the hospital for an internal US, no heartbeat.  After that Andy and I met with my dr. again to go over our options.

1.) Take medicine at home and pass the baby here.  Bloody, painful and all around not a fun experience.  2.) Have a D&C at the hospital, which is being put under and waking up an hour later and it’s all done.  Go home after another hour. 

So that’s what I chose.  We scheduled the D&C for Thursday and I went home.  That afternoon I started bleeding.  It was kind of crazy because the baby had been dead for about 2 weeks (according to US), yet I hadn’t had any spotting or cramping at all. But that afternoon it all started.  My dr. was so sweet and had given me her personal cell phone number so I could call day or night. That night I spoke to her and told her I was bleeding, no cramping yet, and wondered if we could move up the procedure – I was worried I’d end up having it at home after all.  She had to check the OR for availability the next day so Tuesday morning she called me back and told me we could do it that afternoon at 1:30. 

At 12:30 Tuesday afternoon we went to the hospital and got prepped for the surgery.  I was wheeled back a little after 1:30 and was back in my room by 2:30.  We left the hospital a little before 4:00.  It turns out I was already dilated and in the process of passing the baby myself so it was a good thing I went in early.

I’m doing fine, it’s all a little surreal still since it happened so fast.  The boys are doing well, they were very sad, still are, but are their normal, crazy selves.  Glad kids are resilient.  Aiden said that since we had Tate after we lost the first baby, maybe we’d have another baby since we lost this one.  Oh boy, I don’t know.  That’s the question everyone wants to ask and no one will – will we try to have another baby?  Who knows.  I’d like to see what the pathology report says first before making any hard and fast decisions.  There’s no rush, but right now I don’t feel like we will. We have 3 healthy boys, why push it?

We don’t and won’t know the sex of the baby – it wasn’t developed enough to show the gender yet.

So that’s been my week so far. Andy is home with me again today helping with Tate and housework.  I feel pretty good physically, tired and a tiny bit sore, but nothing too bad.  Emotionally I’m feeling good, too.  It stinks but I’ll be ok.



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#TrackTheTank // What Motivates Me

The #TrackTheTank Ruffles With Love tank top has arrived at my house!  Tia at Hands On Pants Off and Candra from Camo and Lipstick put together this awesome giveaway where the tank gets passed around from blogger to blogger.  When we receive the tank we sign it with a little motivational message, then send it on the next blogger.  Once it makes it through all the bloggers there will be a big giveaway for this amazing motivational tank!

In the meantime, once we receive the tank we are to take a selfie with it then write a post about what motivates us.  Pretty cool, right?

So, here's my 'selfie' with the tank.  No, I'm not in the picture, mostly because I didn't have my hair or makeup done and no one wants to see that!

So, what motivates me?  My family. 

I want to be healthy for them.  I want to be active for them.  Having 3 boys means playing football, soccer, basketball, and baseball in the yard and driveway.  I can't be out of shape and keep up with them, can I?  No way!

Another motivation?  How I feel in my clothes.

I didn't realize how 'bad' I looked until after having Tate, when I lost all of my pregnancy weight plus another 20lbs!  I saw pictures of me with the extra weight and without and holy smokes, I couldn't believe the difference!  I never want to go back to that old weight again.  Shopping is more fun when clothes actually fit and don't look all that bad on you!  Looking in the mirror isn't as upsetting when you feel better about yourself.  I'm not saying I don't want to keep on losing more weight, I still have a little way to go until I'm at a weight I would feel more comfortable with, but where I'm at is better than where I was.

Stay tuned to the blog for the big giveaway -- the girls are hoping to have it going by year's end. 

What motivates you??

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School Project // Brennan

A little over a week ago Brennan brought home a feather cut out of construction paper with instructions to decorate it as a family.  Once completed it was to be sent back to school where they would hang it with the other Kindergartener's feathers to complete a turkey. 

After reading the instructions I remembered doing this project with Aiden 3 years ago.  Here is Aiden's completed feather.

We wrote what each of us was thankful for on the feathers and of course had to show off our love for the Hawkeyes and football up top!

So with Brennan's I was trying to be creative once again and come up with something that represented Brennan and was fun to look at.  Here's his finished feather.
 We used Lego Movie stickers to represent each member of our family.

We traced Brennan's hand and made it into a turkey and Brennie wrote 'Happy Thanksgiving'.

I couldn't resist teaching Brennan my favorite art technique from when I was in school.  You cut 2x2" (or so) squares of tissue paper, then wrap one around the eraser end of a pencil, dip in in a tiny bit of glue, then stick it down onto your project.  I think it gives things a neat look.

We had a lot of fun decorating Bren's feather, I can't wait to see all of the kids' feathers when they are all hung up!

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Tate Lately // 9 Month Update



Tate, you are one busy little guy!  There is no waking moment when you sit still and aren’t moving and exploring.  Whether you are crawling, pulling yourself up to anything that stands still, cruising along the furniture or wall, raising your arms over your head and shaking them while in the high chair eating – you are always in motion!

You are such a funny little boy.  You love playing peek-a-boo, even right now as I type this you are standing behind the laptop and poking your head around with a big cheesy smile waiting for me to say “peek!”, then you quickly move your face back behind the laptop to do it again.  You love to wrestle with anyone who is laying on the floor and growl with glee as you ‘conquer’ them.  You have an obsession with pulling yourself up to the lamp stand then stretching your arm as far as you can trying to grab the remotes we push clear to the back out of your reach.  You disappear quite often – I either find you back in the hallway wishing you could get in the boys’ room to dig through all their toys or back in the laundry/mud room where you are playing with the shoes or trying to pull down Brennan’s back pack that he left laying on the bench.

You eat 3 meals a day.  For breakfast it’s either baby oatmeal or whatever soft thing I have made for the family (waffles, toast, pancakes).  Lunch and supper are a baby food veggie and fruit unless I have made something ‘baby friendly’ for that meal.  Last week we discovered that you love Tater Tot Casserole!  That’s fitting, isn’t it?  You take a bottle after each meal, one in the afternoon after your nap and one before bedtime. All are usually 6oz. and you like to drive Daddy nuts by consistently leaving just under an ounce in every bottle.  You hold your own bottle now, although I still like to help you.  I love kissing on your sweet dimpled knuckles while you take your bottle.


The big news this month is you finally got your first tooth in!  Actually, your first 2 teeth!  Your bottom left tooth was first, followed almost 2 weeks later by your bottom right tooth.  You are trying to figure out what they are by moving your tongue over them.  I love looking over at you and seeing your tongue sticking out, wiggling around while you feel those new pearly whites in your mouth.

You are wearing size 4 diapers now, and your clothes are in the 18 to 24mo range.  I pulled out a Thanksgiving shirt that Brennan wore that was a 2T and it actually fit you without being too baggy!  You have outgrown your size 3 shoes already and are wearing size 4’s now.  I love hearing people say how big you are for your age, because you are! But you are perfectly proportioned with just the right amount of ‘squish’. 

You and your snuggly blankie!  I just love watching you love on that sweet blankie of yours!  I put it up on my shoulder when we get to your crib for naps and you always lay your head down on it and rub your face in it.  If it’s on the floor and you notice it you crawl over as fast as your chubby legs can carry you and dive down onto it, then rub your face all over it, pop your head up and smile at me or Daddy, then go back in for more love!  I’m so happy you love the blankie that I made special for you!


You have found that you are tall enough to see out the living room windows now!  You love standing there watching out them, looking around at the big big world outside.  You also love when I open your curtains in your room after naptime, you always lean forward and look down at the bush that is planted outside your window.  We talk about if it’s wiggling in the breeze or standing still that day.  You smile and whisper “saa saa saa” at it. 


Daddy and I love having special time with you every night after the big boys go to bed.  You usually go to bed between 8:30 and 9 then wake up the next morning around 6:00.  You take a morning nap that’s about 1 1/2 hours long, a 2 hour afternoon nap and a shorter early evening nap depending on how late your afternoon nap was. 

I love watching you grow every single day and learn new ‘tricks’.  Tate, you are such a joy to have in our lives!  I hope you never lose your spunkiness and your silliness!




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A Blog-worthy Weekend

Wow, this past weekend was one for the record books! 

Saturday morning I met a dear, sweet friend of mine in town and we hit up all of the Christmas Open Houses at the gift shops uptown.  Another good friend of mine was having a sale of the Christmas decorations she no longer wanted.  Sounds kind of strange when I put it like that, but seriously, she was selling GOOD STUFF and it was priced to sell!  I got 2 Santas for $25.  One is 30" tall, the other 24".  The 30" one would have been $50 or more in a store and I scored it for $13!!!  She has country Christmas type of stuff, some primitive - loved it all! Could have bought the whole place out!  It was a great first stop for us. 

After we hit up all the other stores we stopped for lunch.  It was such a great girls morning, we gabbed, gossiped and caught up.  Sadly Jenny is moving away this week so we won't have our girl dates anymore.  We used to meet up for supper every so often just to get out of the house and catch up, that won't be happening anymore.  :(  I might have shed a few tears on the way home that afternoon.

Sunday we had our first Thanksgiving Dinner.  It was very untraditional, we had soups, but they were yummy and the company was great.  We didn't stick around long because we had to get home to take advantage of the great weather and get our yard work done.  I had wanted to go out and rake leaves two weeks ago but it just didn't happen. Since then we've had a few windy days and they were out of the north, which was to our advantage because it meant most of those leaves blew out of our yard!  So we raked up what had collected in the flower beds, hauled those to the mulch pile our city has.  Then we put away the summer toys from the garage and moved the snow blower and shovels in.  I pulled out the dead plants from my planters and took the cushions off the patio furniture and stacked all of those up.  Swept out the garage, blew off and winterized the lawn mower, got the snow blower running... it was so great to get everything done and the weather couldn't have been better for it!  Highs in the 50's, a slight breeze - only needed heavy sweatshirts to work outside!  I should say, I didn't do all of that list by myself!  The boys and Andy were working along side me the whole time.  Thought I'd better throw that out there!

Sunday night we had our favorite cheesy hamburger dip and watched football.  Da' Bears got a major butt kicking and I'm worried they're going to can Trestman (our coach).  I really like the poor guy, hope he doesn't get the ax because the Bears play like crap.  It was about as sad as watching the Hawkeyes get stomped Saturday.  Womp womp.

So like I said, it was a great weekend! Productive and we had time to play.  What more can you ask for?    We were all together and it was awesome!

Today starts my 2nd trimester. Say what?!?  The first trimester went so fast because I didn't know I was pregnant until I was 8 weeks along, I highly recommend that! :)  My next OB appointment is next week, excited to hear the baby's heartbeat!  Hoping they schedule my 20 week Ultrasound then too so I can get that on my calendar.

Today Mr. Tate is 9 months old!  I'll have his 9 month update up this week.  He's been busy this past month!  Time to start planning his first birthday party!

Have a great day and an awesome week!  Don't forget to thank a Veteran tomorrow for their sacrifices!

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Sunday Brunch // Take 3

Sunday a group of my friends and I went out for brunch.  I went from never having brunch before in my life back in May to having had it three times now in early November!  But why not?!?  Brunch is sooo good!

This particular place we went Sunday was the same one I went to for my very first brunch.  It is so.darn.good!!!  Here's a list of what they serve:

  • plain scrambled eggs
  • scrambled eggs with peppers, tomatoes, cheese and onions on top
  • bacon
  • sausage links
  • Prime Rib
  • Salmon
  • biscuits and sausage gravy
  • mashed potatoes and gravy
  • pasta in alfredo sauce
  • pork in some sauce with mushrooms that looked amazing
  • hash brown bits
  • cinnamon rolls
  • pastries
  • fruit out the wazoo
  • chocolate and white chocolate covered strawberries
  • and last, a dessert table to die for!  5 different kinds of cakes, cheesecake, and other little bars to choose from
I bet I missed something on this list.  It was incredible! I stuffed myself silly.  We also had free mimosas with our brunch but of course I had to pass mine on to one of the other gals.  (I may or may not have snuck a sip and holy smokes was that a good mimosa!)

Along with the good food was tons of laughter.  These are my 'hair show gals' so we had a ton to talk about.  It was such a fun morning, already looking forward to January when we pick another brunch to try!

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Halloween 2014



Last week we carved our pumpkin for Halloween.  The boys wanted something ‘scary’, so I googled “scary pumpkin carving” and found an image similar to this guy.  We decided to leave a little ‘goo’ in there hanging down to add to the effect! 

My job was to draw the face on and then Andy would cut it out.  Well, he was giving Tate a bath so I just decided to go ahead and get it started for him.  Well, it was going to so easy and fast for me that I just went ahead and did the whole thing!  I was pretty happy with how it turned out.  I think it’s a spooky pumpkin!  The boys really loved it and we had fun turning the kitchen lights off after we light the candle so we could show it off to Andy.


Friday I went to the boys’ costume parade in the gym at school to see them and their friends in their costumes. There were some clever costumes this year!  A little guy was dressed up as the UPS man and had a cardboard box made to look like their big brown trucks.  Lots of Elsa’s, of course.  Some hula girls.  The ever popular Spiderman.  This picture is of Aiden (the Ninja) and his 3 best buddies dressed up.  A hunter, a corn cob (holding a DeKalb Seed sign since his  mom is one of their salesman) and a football player.




And this kid, Hayden Fry! (One of the best Iowa Hawkeye football coaches of all time!)


After school we loaded up and went trick or treating.  Here are my 3 guys all dressed up.


Halloween 2014 was another success.  On the way home Brennan said “I wonder what I should be next year?”  Oh sheesh, give me some time to get over this year! Ha ha!

And now, HAPPY NOVEMBER!!!!  I absolutely LOVE Thanksgiving, so so happy November is finally here again!


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Integrated Screening Test


Today I am 12 weeks pregnant.  One more week in my First Trimester.  Wow, that seems strange to say.  This pregnancy still seems surreal. Aside from feeling icky if I eat too much I don’t feel pregnant at all.  Most times I actually ‘forget’ I’m pregnant.  Who can really completely forget, right? But it’s far enough from the front of my mind most times that I don’t have it always hanging there in the periphery. 

Because we had an anencephalic pregnancy where we lost the baby at 21 weeks we have opted to do the Integrated Screening per the recommendation of my OB.  With the Integrated Screening test you have an Ultrasound before 12 weeks gestation, then have 2 blood tests.  The first before 12 weeks, the second between 15 and 20 weeks.  Friday we went to “The Big Hospital” to have our US and first blood draw.  We had already had an US at our first appointment to determine how far along I was so was able to see that more than likely this baby didn’t have Anencephaly.  That was one thing they were able to rule out at this US, which was a huge relief although I wasn’t at all worried about that happening again – it was just a lightning strike that it happened in the first place.  They also determined that some ‘thing’ that’s supposed to be thin was/is thin so that was good also.  The tech told us that everything on the US looked normal so that was great to hear. 

I had a vial of blood drawn while there and in a few weeks I’ll go to our local hospital and have my 2nd blood draw done. Then they compare the numbers from those 2 blood draws and that will determine if there are any chromosomal abnormalities.  If there are, further testing will be done to determine what is going on.

With the baby we lost I just knew, had a feeling, that something was wrong with it.  This time I do not have any feelings like that, just fear that they will find something like anyone would be.  Once we get the tests back with negative results I will feel much more comfortable about all of this.  Until then, I worry.

Thank you for all the well wishes last week!


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