Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy Birthday Nate and Happy Christmas Eve!

Today was a jam packed day! We woke up to a beautiful snowfall coming down (I should say Nate woke me up to show me the beautiful snowfall). From there we had a busy day of cleaning, cooking, shopping and just having fun in general. It was a great day.

Tonight, we were able to spend the evening with our family. We had a DELISH meal of prime rib, lobster, potatoes, salad, jello, creamed corn and rolls. We finished off with birthday cake for Nates birthday. Then commenced the birthday celebration for Nate. All day he's been antsy to play with his toys that he was able to choose today with Uncle Scott, Grandparents and myself. He had such a great time.

After birthday celebration we had a live nativity with the kids, read a cute Christmas book, had a impromptu concert by my niece Melissa on her violin (which was fabulous), had a visit from the Christmas Brownie for jammies and sung Christmas carols. I love my family, they are such a joy to be with.

When we got home we of course had to have some milk and cookies, watched Mr Krugers Christmas and tracked Santa. The boys were sooooooo excited about Santa coming. Funny enough, Nate is by far the most excited. The other two are out cold but Nate is in his room boobytrapping the place so he will wake up when Santa comes. He's also playing with his new toys. No matter how much I tell him he needs to go to sleep, he just can't calm down. He was even doubting Santa this year....but I think I've gotten him convinced this time. Next year might be a different story.

Today marks an amazing day in my history, the day that Nate was born. He was my little Christmas baby. He was born at 11:48 PM....almost an actual Christmas Day baby. We were soo happy to have him come to our family. He is such a smart, helpful and kind little (BIG) guy. He is happy to help his brothers and has a giant heart. I love my baby...he is such a beautiful member of our family.

So ya''s time to get a kid zonked out so Santa can come. I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas season so far and have a fantastic day tomorrow! Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Instagram Thursday!

In no particular order (seriously....they uploaded randomly....) this has been my week or so!

My friend sent this to me the other day. I feel it's only fitting. And it made me laugh real hard haha!

We went to our friends' house for their daughter's very fun birthday. I'm using this for blackmail later in life.

Ry and his cousin watching their ice cream be frozen with nitrogen. Very cool indeed!

I moved out of my LO's office this week....this is my new workspace. It's much roomier. And in the "pit" with the other processors. It's an adjustment....but I LOVE it!

We had our first big snow of the season! It was very pretty. Scary to drive in because people think they know how to drive in the snow but really they are just trying to kill everyone around them....but still pretty!

Went to a great place called Sakura today with my  friend Travis. It was awesome. And this hibachi chef as absolutely hilarious. Couldn't understand half of what he was saying, but he loved posing for pictures!

We had our work party tonight and I must say....I absolutely LOVE my job and the people I work with. Truly, they are some of the very best people I know. AND we got spoiled! The LO's all pitched in to get us support staff some goodies! This bucket was chuck full of lots of awesome presents. 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

New Opportunity

I have been researching a line of products that a friend of mine sells and I've decided to join her team to help sell them. She is overloaded with work and needed some am helping. And I'm pretty excited about the opportunity. The product is called It Works. There are lots of fun products in this line, but I'm most excited about the skinny wraps. No they don't make miracles happen, but when used with healthy eating habits and exercise, they do help tighten up loose skin and help stretch marks and cellulite fade out. I'm very excited for the opportunity. Mostly for selfish reasons. Because we all know I have a fear of the dreaded and loathsome 'tummy tongue'. See below (via YouTube):

Again this is not a miracle cure or anything...but it does help tighten up loose skin. But this doesn't only include tummies, you can do it anywhere on your body. So if you have a double chin your hating, slap the bad boy on and it will reduce down the gobble look. Or if you have old lady wing arms (also referred to as Relief Society arms around here) it will help that out a little too.
So go Google, YouTube, Pinterest, whatever it and check it out. I'll post a link to my site once it's up and running.
Once again...a way has been provided to help me with these upcoming costs....just one more reason that I can say that miracles happen. They do folks....they do. :)

On a random note....I didn't realize how long my hair was until I got it cut tonight. 6 inches the girl cut off. And I miss my long hair already, but I am LOVING the fact that every time I put my purse on my shoulder or my coat on, my hair doesn't get squished or ripped out. I'll post a pic when I actually do my hair tomorrow. Yay!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Mormon Messages Monday (kinda)

Friday brought forth some seriously tragic news that absolutely no one ever could have ever imagined happening. A shooting in a Connecticut elementary school. 27 (I think? I've heard multiple numbers but I'm going with that one) people dead. 20 of those kids between the ages of 6 and 7 years old. It was a true tragedy in every sense of the word. I can't even imagine the pain that those families are going through. The families of the teachers and adults who were killed.....but more so the families of those sweet little children who are no longer with them. Those little ones had so much life ahead of them, so much left to do on this Earth and their time was cut short in a horrific killing spree. All I have been able to think about is how much their hearts are hurting right now.
And the kids who had to listen to and watch it all happen? Thank goodness their lives were spared but they will have a rough journey learning to cope with what they had to endure. My heart just hurts for them and the pain they must be going through trying to deal with the events of that day.
It was an eye opener for me too. We have rough mornings. There are mornings that the ride to school is filled with me being frustrated because kids were too pokey and now we are late for school....or cussing them to stop fighting or to share their cereal. How would I feel if one of those kids would've been my own and the last thing they heard their Momma say was "stop fighting with your brothers!" or "you better not leave your brother at school alone again!"?
Needless to say, even though we were running late this morning we had a nice ride to school. We were happy and there was no cussing involved. There were lots of kisses and I said I love you to them about a million times as they walked into the building, and that won't be changing any time soon that's for sure. I never want the last words I speak to my kids to be in anger or frustration, only in love.

So there are a whole lot of memorial videos, pictures, etc out there but I'm sharing the video that I have loved the most. Mostly because I love this song but also because I love that these people got together to show their love to those hurting families in their time of need. So...without further ado...Hallelujah.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Amazing Miracles

I have had an outpouring of blessings today that I need to share. As a back story....I was talking about my schedule at work last night and how I would need to work from home a day or two due to Tyler's surgery....and that I would need some time off/work from hospital time in the future as well so of course was asked what for. So I told my LO (loan officer) what was going on.


I am sitting at my desk this morning reconciling a HUD and plugged in to my music...when one of the brothers who owns the company came in with a check. He told me the money was to help with surgery costs and how much he sure hoped everything would go okay. He expressed how much they really appreciated me and my hard work. I was in shock. I tried hard not to tear up....I mean I'm working and all. I think I was able to spit out a thank you a few times out of my shock and attempt to hold back tears. I need to say a real thank you tomorrow now that I'm not blubbering. But what a blessing to work with just truly amazing, kind and caring people. Every single person I work with has so much love and caring in their hearts for every other person there, and this is just a testament to that. I am truly blessed.

And I'm being bored and such I go on to check my status with my CHIP application. There are no new notices, however on the alerts it says I can review my payment info. So I click....and I officially have payment info for CHIP! My boys have health/dental insurance! Woot woot! I haven't gotten the official notice yet or my cards, but I think we are golden! The plan I qualify for has the higher premiums/deductibles and etc but at least it covers something. If nothing else, it will help buffer the cost of the orthodontics and the doc visits. And maybe....hopefully.....I can get some surgery help. It says the max I will have to pay per year for anything medical/dental will be 5% of my income but I'm not sure if that includes surgery as there were millions are asterisks by that phrase as well. And I won't know what they are calculating my yearly income to be until they send me my official notice. BUT. YAY! The boys have health insurance again!!!

I'd say both are small miracles in my mind. Definite blessings. Faith boosters. A way has been provided to help us through. Things will still be a struggle as I try to pay the deductibles and that whole 5% business, but not nearly as unreachable as $15,000 or so.

A way has been provided....we will be okay.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Mormon Messages Monday

Since it's the Christmas Season, I'm focusing my Mormon Messages on Christmas this month. I LOVE this message. Sometimes we are soooo focused on the commercial side of Christmas and the presents and how much we can spend...keeping up with the Jones'.....etc. But really...I celebrate because I want to remember the day that our Christ was born. I't's not about how many presents we get or how much they cost. I hope that I impart on my kids the importance of the holiday....Christ. These kids say it best. Enjoy! Kids and Christmas.


I've been contemplating the recent events of my life today and have started to feel a surreal amount of peace. I am not sure why, but my guess would be it is from the thoughts and prayers that I have been saying and that my loved ones have been saying for me (thank you!). But I have realized a few things as well that I had lost sight of and I want to put in writing so that when I'm feeling down and weak I can come back and read what I'm about to write.

I know, without a doubt, that I will be okay.

I know financially, that even though I'm feeling an insane amount of stress over how I'm going to make everything work, I will find a way. A way will be provided for me. As I look back through my life, even when I've had financial hardships in the past and there have been a lot of them, there has always been a way provided to me. We have never truly been without. We have struggled, yes. But never truly been without. And this will be no different. We may struggle, yes. But we will not be without.

I know that the stress and chaos with Ty will work out fine. I know that he will be okay. I know that I will be given the knowledge I need to get him, myself and the rest of our little family through this. I know he will be taken care of by some of the best docs in the country and he will come out ahead of the game. And, I know this will all come with patience and an open heart on my part.

I know that there is someone out there who will be perfect for me. I know the loneliness I'm feeling right now will not be a forever deal. And I know I need to wait patiently and prepare myself to accept the person in my life who is meant to be there. I know that love is not something that just happens, it is something that is grown and nurtured together until something beautiful comes to be...and then is grown and nurtured some more to stay beautiful. I know that the person for me will want to be here and will not run from his feelings. He will want to nurture them with me. He will want to work with me to create a safe place for the both of us, somewhere that we know we can be ourselves, we can be vulnerable and we will know that even though it's inevitable that we will hurt each other, we will find a way to move on together and will love each other even more for facing our trials together, hand in hand...side by side.

I know that I have a greater calling while I'm here in this life than I can see. I know that I am meant to do amazing and wonderful things, but that I cannot do them in my current state. I know that I need to rise above my hurdles and seek out the knowledge I will need to accomplish what I am meant to accomplish here on earth, the steps have been given to me I just need to follow them. And I know that I can succeed. I know I am meant to succeed so that I can find the peace that I desperately long for and so that I can be a light to those around me, showing them that no matter the trial, they too can find peace in their hearts.

Our pain will help us know true joy. Our trials will help us grow strong. And I know....beyond a doubt.....that I am loved. I am blessed. I am protected and watched over. I know without a doubt that my boys are loved, blessed and protected as well. There is no denying that we have someone watching over us. He has held us in our darkest hours. He has offered a hand to help us rise above. He has given us the strength and courage to face the world head on. And he will continue to do so until the end.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Reason For The World

There are no words in times like these when tears don't hide the tragedies. And all you want is a reason for the world. No comfort in a greeting card because God is good, but life's still hard. And your heart just wants a reason for the world.
But maybe the reason for the pain is so that we would pray for strength.
And maybe the reason for strength is so that we would not lose hope.
And maybe the reason for our hope is so that we could face to world.
And the reason for the world is to make us long for home.
For God so loved your broken heart. He sent his Son to where you are and he died to give a reason for the world. So lift your sorrows to the One whose plan for you has just begun. And rest here in the hands that hold the the world.
Well I know you're past the point of broken, surrounded by your fear. I know your feet are tired and weary from the road that you walk down here. But just keep your eyes on heaven and know that you are not alone.
Remember the reason for the world.
No ear has heard, no eye has seen, not even your wildest dreams...the beauty that awaits beyond the world.
When you look into the eyes of grace and hear the voice of mercy say "Child, welcome to the reason for the world."

The Heart of Christmas

We watched a movie tonight as a family that was absolutely amazing. It was called The Heart of Christmas. It's about a family who finds out their young son has a pretty serious case of Leukemia and about their experiences in going through his treatments. It was a tear jerker indeed, don't watch it without tissues. But the part that struck a chord with me was when the mom was having a really hard time after her son got an infection that made her son really sick and as she watched him laying there, she told her friend (who's daughter had the same illness) "I don't think I can handle this. What do you do?" Her friend's response is what got me. She said:

"Well you don't have a choice, do you? Dax needs you to be strong....and I know you can do it."

I have been focused these last few weeks on the stress and chaos I'm going through. Wondering how I was going to get all of this taken care of, how I was going to make it when everything seems to be piling on me. When will I get through this. Will it get any better?

But her friend made point I needed to hear. Regardless of what I am going through financially, emotionally, physically, whatever....I don't have a choice. This is what is happening and if I'm not strong then this family will fall apart. I am all they have and they are all I have.

So whether I like it or not, it's time to buck up and be strong. Not only for my kids, but for myself as well.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

I need a game plan.

Yesterday was rough. But....I had a lot of love and support from various people and you know, it helps me realize that as hard as this is, it will end and things will get better. Somehow I will find a way to conquer every single hurdle that has come my way recently and I will do so with a smile on my face (even if it's fake). But....I know to get through this I will need a game plan. So I'm making a game plan. And will probably need ya'll to help me stick to don't be afraid to comment if I'm slacking or being whiny. So I'm taking my trials and breaking them down into steps.

Financial Stress:

1. Call and set up payments with attorney
2. Set up payments with Daycare (DONE!)
3. When I get big checks, SAVE any extra money instead of blowing it. Sounds like a duh thing...but I have a hard time with this.
4. Figure out doc/travel expenses for Ty *going over that later*
5. No more wasting of food. We waste leftovers a lot, and don't eat our produce quick enough sometimes but now that I'm going to be on a strict more waste. Waste not Want not right?

Tyler Surgery Stress:

1. Make appt with Craniofacial Specialist up north (DONE! Seeing him Jan 24th)
2. Make appt with Orthodontist (DONE! Next Thursday for our consultation)
3. Save money up (see above) for expenses.
4. Prep Ty (and myself) for whats going to be going soon as I know....
5. Find out more accurate costs so I can start making a financial plan to pay that off
6. Keep checking into insurance. Or anything I can find to help us with the costs

Weight Stress:
1. Get off my butt and quit being lazy
2. Get of my butt and quit being lazy
3. Get off my butt and quit being lazy
4. Are we seeing a common thread? I need to stop being lazy and do what I need to do to be happy with myself.

Undisclosed Stress:

1. Say a lot of prayers of comfort and understanding.
2. Have faith that what is meant to be will due time.
3. Have faith in the bigger plan that my life has in store for me.

*Big deep breath*

I know things will get better.....because life is meant to be happy. "Men are that they might have joy" is what a scripture somewhere says right? So it will happen. Just in it's own time, not mine.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Bring It On!

Today was the pinnacle of crappy times for undisclosed reasons that I really don't want to discuss on my blog, but after today I really wonder if there is anything else that can knock me down. Is there? I think the only thing from here is having a death somewhere. No one die, okay? Please? I couldn't handle it right now. I'm feeling overwhelmed. Every aspect of my life has now become unstable and volatile. And I know this will end, I know I'm not given challenges I can't handle but sometimes I wonder why things really need to be so difficult. Why? Why must we go through challenges? And why must they all come at once?
I am thankful to have a supportive family, but for some reason that isn't filling in the gap of loneliness that has hit today. I am soooo tired of going through these struggles alone. I'm soooo tired of not having the kind of support that family can't bring, even with all of their efforts. It's just not the same. I'm just tired. Truly just tired. I know this will get better and I need to have faith, but for now.......just tired.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Absolute Frustration (vent post)

We are moving into a new chapter of Tyler's life and because this process can be absolutely draining and frustrating, I'm going to blog about it. Mostly in hopes that if someone searches Cleft Lip and Palate looking for some insight/common experiences/support/whatever (like I did for nearly 2 hours last night with not much luck) maybe this bad boy blog will pop up and can help. I said before we knew this surgery was going to happen eventually. It's next on the list and it's meant to happen as he is growing. And as I mentioned before as well, I wasn't expecting it to happen right now but it is what it is.

In my jaded little brain, I figured it would go as the other surgeries had....a day or two in the hospital followed up by a few days off school to recover and taking it easy for a little while after that. Ty has been a quick healer and has handled pain very well, especially for a kid his age. Jaded! I decided to do some research since Tyler has been under the assumption that he was going into surgery very soon and that they would be taking out his whole hip so he has to be in a wheelchair. Poor kid...but talk about brave if he was willing to go through it anyway! This prompted the mass research so that I could better explain what's going to happen.

Well. Based on the few other experiences that I was able to find and read about....our next little (LONG) while will go about like this.

First the mouth has got to be prepped to receive the bone graft, which will include braces and an expander to expand his palate (and maybe other stuff, we aren't sure yet). The timeframes for this have varied a bit between experiences I've read but will probably happen for the next 6 weeks to a year. Although the people we've talked to say that he's just about ready based on where his permanent teeth are sitting so I'm thinking it probably won't be a full year. 
After this part is done, the actual surgery will happen. It should last between 2-5 hours and they will take a piece of his bone from his hip and graft it to the space in his gums. Timing for this stuff is pretty vital so that the bone takes and we don't have to do repeat surgeries or have it not work at all. So I figure the surgery will all be dependent on the pace of his growth. *More on this part in a bit* The recovery processes for different people followed the same general outline, but the timelines varied per experience so I really am not sure what to expect. All I know is it's going to be tough.
Most kids were in the hospital for between 2-4 days for IV antibiotics to be given after the surgery. From there, it gets complicated. In regards to diet, the first 3 weeks - 3 months (yeah it varied that much) is a strict liquid diet. From there the next 3 weeks - 3 months is "no chew" soft foods like mashed potatoes and oatmeal. After that, they transition into soft foods like mac & cheese, bread, and things like which are easy to chew for the next 3 weeks - 3 months. Then they can start adding in harder foods after that carefully.
In regards to movement, the first 2 weeks was very limited mobility (I'm assuming for the hip) which means nothing strenuous. Not even room cleaning. For the next 3 months it's nothing hugely physical (running, jumping, rough housing, sports, etc, etc, etc) both for the benefit of the hip healing and to prevent anything from happening that would bump the jaw/gums and prevent the bone growth from happening correctly. After that, activity can be eased in as he feels up to it.

So today we saw the oral surgeon and I was hoping that I would get a better idea of what to expect during OUR experience instead of trying to judge off of other experiences. And.....I was wrong. I'm a bit frustrated by the whole deal because I was really hoping we could build our own oral team down here so we wouldn't have to travel to Salt Lake every time we needed anything. But the oral surgeon so kindly took a $350 3D facial image just to look for a minute and then go on and on AND ON about how it's really hard to read sometimes because kids can't hold still for 45 seconds so it gets fuzzy, and how it takes him a while to see all the different fields of the 3D image. Blah. And then proceeded to tell us that he won't touch our case. Back about 10 years ago he tried to start a cleft team down here but the team up there (our SLC cleft team that I'm trying to get away from) blocked them from starting anything down here because they were the cleft team for Utah and on and on....and he hasn't done many cleft bone grafts so he didn't want to do ours. So....the 3D image and 45 minutes we spent there (and $350 for the 3D image) were for nothing. In my mind anyway. My Mom tried to tell me it was worth while, but I'm still too irritated to think so. And I get and appreciate that the surgeon was honest and let us know he didn't feel comfy completing the surgery. But why couldn't he just call and tell us that? 

Needless to say I'm extremely disappointed and no more closer to being able to prepare myself (and Ty) for what is to come than when we started. I do know that I really wish I didn't have to go to the team up north. But it looks like that will be what's happening and so we go from here. Getting any sort of appointment with that team is usually months out, so I'm hoping they are coming down to St George soon so that we can just see them there. I also really hope they don't block out our Dentist/Orthodontist here locally from helping us because they aren't part of the "team". I wouldn't be surprised if they did though. 

Oh another gem I learned at the surgeons office....CHIP doesn't cover jack when it comes to oral surgery any longer. They wouldn't except it anymore anyway because it never covered anything. And neither does pretty much any other health/dental insurance according to them. So even if I fight to get health insurance, it probably won't do any good for Tyler. Still going to try for our basic needs of course, but I'm soo irritated by the fact that something that is considered medically necessary isn't covered.

This brings us to the financial burden. The parents have offered to help facilitate anything that needs to be done because it is for the greater good of Tyler. Which I appreciate. But I hate that my financial burden and stress is going to be pushed onto them too. I'm sure a big chunk of it is a pride issue as I really don't want to have to have help. I hate the fact that I can't do this on my own. But....sometimes a parent has to suck up the pride to do what's best for their child. So I'm trying. I really am.

So...I guess my next step will be to figure out a doc appointment. I have a strong urge to talk to the Orthodontist in Cedar before I call up North, so I'm going to work on that tomorrow. Then call up to the team to schedule an appointment with them for whenever we can get in. And then I don't know. I guess just play it by ear from there.

So anyway. The perk is that we don't have to shuffle out quite so much money as soon as I thought....that's good. That helps. And that gives me time to figure out what to do for insurance. Granted we'll have all the expenses for travel/dr appts/work done in the meantime but at least its not a big hunk of money all at once for surgery.

So...I'll post more when I know more. Hopefully. Thanks for the prayers and happy thoughts, they brought peace to my heart and helped me have a little reassurance that this will all work out somehow. I truly appreciate it. So...time to go start researching AGAIN. Have a good night ya'll and thanks for listening to my rant.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Mormon Messages Monday

It's been awhile since I've done my Mormon Messages Monday. I don't know why I stopped doing it, probably a mix between busy, stress and laziness. But it's time to start it up again I think.
We talked about Christmas tonight and read the first part of The Gift of Love by Henry B Eyring (we are going to read a few sections every week this month until we finish). I feel it's important to remember why we as a family celebrate Christmas. It's not because of Santa and the presents, it's to celebrate the birth of our Jesus Christ. That's not to say that we can't enjoy the other stuff too, because the gifts we get do represent one piece of the events that occurred during Christ's birth (the wise men bringing gifts to honor the Lord). It's hard not to get caught up in the more commercial aspects of the season. I know I get blindsided by them often. But I'm really going to try to change that for myself and my boys as that shouldn't be our main focus.
To help emphasize this point, we watched Christmas Spirit. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.