Thursday, August 29, 2013


We've been remodeling our bathroom.

Husband decided that the week I was in the hospital, our son would start tearing our bathroom apart.

And when I came home, the serious work began.  He and his good friend tore out the floor and the tub and the toilet.

Now, this is our only bathroom......and I had just gotten out of the hospital after three days.  

They placed our old toilet out the back door under the overhang, unplugged and not even hooked up, so I could go potty in that.

Yeah, seriously.

This is a true story!

Super fun.

They put the new plywood floor down last week.  That enabled them to put the new toilet and bathtub in last Saturday.  So, we've been able to go in a real toilet that's inside!!! And now we aren't scared to death that one of us is going to go plunging through the once-rotten floor!

Yep, that was our reality!

Now the floor is solid and new and ready for flooring.  The toilet is wonderful.

My son has spent the last two days ripping out the 60 year old sheetrock in the bathroom.  There was never any insulation in the walls, so in the winter it was always freezing in there, and the ceramic tiles we previously had were always icy cold.  The only insulation was in the ceiling, and it was shredded up newspaper that dissolved over the last 60 years into a thick dust-like cloud.  

And that's been piled up in the bathroom for the past day.

Dear Lord, my lungs......

So, not only is my bathroom a wreck, but my house is filthy too! We've never done any remodeling before, so this is new to us, not being able to keep the house clean.

My hardwood floors are filthy.  My room is filthy and disheveled due to the fact that the old vanity drawers never got unloaded and taken away to the dump with the old vanity....and we don't have a new vanity yet, not until the new insulation, sheetrock and painting is done.  So those drawers are stacked up in my room, along with everything else that had a home in the bathroom.

Here are a couple of pictures of my room, unadultered and taken before the maid got here.....LOL.
The dressers
The bed
The crib and changing table side of the room.

The closet area

Yeah, I'm a tiny bit overwhelmed right now!!

Think we're ready for our Better Homes and Gardens Beautiful Home tour yet??

Yeah, me neither.  It's obvious that I need help!!

I wouldn't have chosen this unexpected upheaval time in our lives to demolish and remodel our only bathroom, but it desperately needed to be done.

Don't ask me when it's going to be finished!

Now I have to pick out paint to match my shower curtain, which bewilders me a bit because I want to make the best choice! My dear friend told me to take my shower curtain with me in a zippy bag and match paint chips that way.


Without further ado, I give you......

Our gutted bathroom!
The ceiling.

The view looking in through the door.

Sorry for the poor quality of the pictures, but you get the idea.  We haven't gutted the shower area yet, so that's surrounded by a makeshift wall protector of shower curtains! Picture a shower surround made of thin plastic shower curtains that, when you shower, stick to you and you constantly have to shove them off! BUT we have a new shower head and faucet and it's really nice......I'll be super glad when there's new sheetrock and it's all painted!

Yes, I'm sympathize with me, okay??


I hope the "after" pictures will be able to be posted very, very soon!

Stay tuned!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


I'm smiling!!

You people are really great.

My heart has been overwhelmed with gratitude and thankfulness and love lately, and your comments just put smiles on my face!

For some reason, Blogger won't let me leave you guys comments individually, even though I sign in and, let me leave you all a comment here!

To all of you who commented, thanks for encouraging me to be real on my blog.  Truthfully, with me, what you see is what you get, and I have a really hard time not being truthful and honest! So you can be assured that all you will get on my blog is The Real Deal.

I really, really appreciate you all.  Erin and Kathy and Renata and Tesha and Country Cupcakes and Rosalie.....I smile whenever I think of you, and I also pray for you guys too.

Anyway, I just wanted you to know how grateful and encouraged I am because of your kindness.

I'm all smiles!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

A Ramble

I'm still here!!!

I've looked at my blog every day for the past week and realized I haven't posted in many days, but the truth is.......

What I have to say is just My Life.

Who wants to read about My Life?

I know most bloggers blog because they want to keep a record for their kids or because they don't want to forget this-and-that, but I blog because I like to write.  I have a million things running around in my head.....I just like to write.  

But I haven't written in a long time.

I have said I want to post pictures but just don't know where they all are.....

Truthfully, who really wants to read about My Life?

My Life isn't exciting.

I'm a homeschool mom of a big family who is conservative but not legalistically fundamental.  I like to cook.  I have lots of girls.  I'm pregnant for the 15th time.  I live in a small house.  I'm married to a long-time mailman.  I'm a singer.  I'm an introvert but am an extrovert with my Circle of Friends.  I love coffee drinks.  I love Mexican food.  I'm a closet Foodie.

None of that sounds very exciting.

To be honest, all of the things that I love and enjoy and need and want to do have gotten lost due to extreme exhaustion and health troubles.  I have forgotten who The Real Me is.  The exhaustion and every complication that comes with that has swallowed up The Real Me.

It has taken a near-death experience for both me and Baby Boy to realize that I needed help.

To make a long story short, I nearly died last Saturday night.  And so did Baby Boy.  I woke up many, many hours later in the ICU at a very, very good hospital an hour away from my home, on a respirator and with tubes and wires connecting to every space available on my body.  I spent three days in the hospital with my husband and some of the best doctors in the country, getting help.  

The Lord performed a Double Miracle for me and Baby Boy.

And I'm going to be okay.....and Baby Boy is going to be okay, but now, I have to try to remember who The Real Me is.

On a side note, if it hadn't been for the paramedics and the doctors who treated me and helped me, I and Baby Boy probably would not be here today writing this.  The American Medical Profession is very good for many things.  And on occasion, prescription medication is just plain necessary and unavoidable.......However......

We also believe in a naturopathic approach which addresses the Whole Person also.  We believe in getting to the bottom of medical issues and not just treating the symptoms or applying a bandaid.  We have a Naturopathic Physician whom we have been seeing for over 16 years and he has helped and healed our family in countless ways.  We have learned so much from him and he has helped our family to be as healthy as we can be.

That said, we are using a doubled-edged, comprehensive approach to my health.

I am using supplements to support my body while also using a prescription drug to allow me to have the health that I so desperately need and on which I have been missing out, slowly but surely, for the past 10 years.  The allopathic and naturopathic medical professions do compliment each other, and that is the approach we have decided on, in my road back to The Real Me and in the rest of my pregnancy.

So, the rest of this year will be spent on seeking The Real Me.

Who wants to read about that?? 

My blog isn't sensational, as evidenced by the very few readers I have.  My blog isn't ever going to be trendy or modern or hip or with-it.  I won't have ads or giveaways or cool stuff.  

The question is, will you still read it?

I love my readers.  A few of them have become very dear friends, like Erin and Tesha and  Renata, and you know what? It's worth it to me to ramble on here and be a writer just for those three girls!! 

Thanks for letting me ramble.  Thanks for letting me basically do a Heart and Brain Dump here.  I know it's been a bit rabbit trail-ish......but thanks for reading.

And thanks for praying for me as I start on the journey to find The Real Me.

Thursday, August 15, 2013


Here's a video that Hannah made the other day.

It's our summer.  It's beauty. It's joy.  It's bliss and happiness, all rolled into a small video.

I'd love for you to watch it and get a glimpse of a our life.

Monday, August 12, 2013

20 Weeks

Here's another Bumpdate.....complete with a picture!!!

I know, it's a miracle that I actually managed to find a picture to post, isn't it??!! Actually, my Techie Daughter helped me find it.  

Without further ado, here is the VERY HUGE, 5 month pregnant Me!


I think the only time I've posted a Bump picture is when I was pregnant with The Babies and I had just found out they were twins, so I was like 16 weeks and just as big as I am now!

So, I'll update on the stats too, okay?

How far along? 20 weeks exactly today! That's 5 months. It means I'm halfway to my due date! 

Weight gained? I had only gained three pounds at my last midwife appointment, and I don't feel like I've gained any more weight lately, praise God!!! 

Maternity clothes? Hello?? What do you think? Umm, with a tummy that big already, of course I'm wearing maternity clothes! I love my Old Navy jersey knit, over belly skirts.

Gender? It's a BOY!!!! I just like to say his name a lot because it sounds so stunning and so miraculous to me! He's a Banana Baby right now, about 10 inches long and 10 ounces.  

Feeling? I'm feeling much farther along in this pregnancy than I really am! Oy.  Sometimes I feel like my insides are being squished by a Hercules fist! I get tired really quickly and have to rest a lot and sometimes I take two naps a day.  I had a return of the nausea for a while, but I think it's gone again, unless I'm hungry.  

Sleep? I'm not really sleeping very good.  Last night was the best night's sleep I have gotten in about a week.  I can't sleep on my side (I'm a side sleeper) and I mostly have to sleep propped up, already!!!! I guess this is just practice for when he gets here and I'm hardly sleeping at all!

Best moment this week? Well, the week has just started.....but at the end of last week I went to one of my favorite resale shops and actually got to look at baby boy clothes and BUY some of them!! I about died over the Baby Boy Jeans!!!!!

Looking forward to? Of course, my next midwife appointment.  She's just a really great gal and I adore her assistant too! I'm also REALLY looking forward to the Bedroom Update that my husband is going to do for me for our 20th anniversary!!!

Cravings: I'm still craving breakfast.  I was craving Dr Pepper, which I never drink at all, for a couple of days.  Right now I'm craving a Baja Chili salad from Wendy's!!! I have to confess that this pregnancy has had me craving really junky stuff, and I'm usually NOT a junky eater.  It's so hard because I know that stuff is soooo bad for me!! From now on, I'm never, ever going to judge a pregnant mama for her cravings!! LOL!

Missing? I'm not missing much, but if I had to think about it, I'd say the thing I miss the most is SLEEP!

I think that's all of the stats.....I hope I didn't bore you to tears!! 

Friday, August 9, 2013


Hey, I got a new blog design!

My daughter who's almost 15 did it for me.  

My oldest daughter and I have been trying to figure out how to change the photo at the top of my blog, the beach one, but never did figure it out, and wham-o-bam-o,  Daughter #2 sits down at the computer and in five minutes has a new picture all set up to go, as well as customizing the scripture too!! 

Daughter #2 is my Go-To Gal for anything computer related. She's a good teacher too, and she always tries, in the most kind and gentle way, to get me to understand what she's doing so that I'll be able to do it myself.  She taught me how to take an image off of the internet and put it on our FB page. You all may think that's pretty elementary and easy, but I'm no techy and I'm certainly not computer savvy! Yep, she's pretty awesome!

The new picture at the top....I think she took it.  My father-in-law has a tiny backyard right in the middle of our city, but he has made it so beautiful.  He's got lilies galore, every kind you can imagine, and strawberries and other things too. Some of his lilies are over 8 feet tall and laden, literally bending, under the weight of so many flowers! That picture up top of my blog is African daisies.  A couple of days earlier in the week, we all went over there with our beat up little camera and let the girls take pictures of his flowers and things.  This picture on my blog is one of those pictures!

I love the new background too.  In finding a new picture and posting it, the previous background somehow got lost, and we looked all over for it but couldn't find it, so I told Daughter #2 to go on Cutest Blog on the Block and look at Fall themed backgrounds.  We found this one.  I adore Fall and I love trees, and I love the colors of the background we chose!

I hope you like the new look.  No, it isn't professionally done, and no, it didn't cost a thing, but it's special to me because my daughter did it!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Well, I'm officially 40 years old now.

I turned 40 at the end of June.  So I've been officially 40 for hmmm, about 2 months now.  

You know, before I turned 40, when it loomed up at me from afar, I had horrible daydreams of waking up on the morning of my 40th birthday and looking in the mirror and seeing a horrible, decrepit old toothless hag staring back at me! I was sure that my body would instantly break down and that I'd need a walker and a nursing home.  None of that happened, of course, but I was sure that I'd feel so much older.  I really wasn't actually looking forward to turning that magic age that put me in a whole new age category!

The fact is, I've felt much older than my age for some time!! When my son turned 15, I really started to feel that pinch, you know? And now that he's 18 and I also have two teenage girls, I realize that they're growing up and that means I'm getting older! Sara turns 13 in 6 months, and that's a lot of teens in our house! It makes me feel tired and inadequate and well.....really 40 for real!

It's sort of common knowledge that 40 is a milestone age, and I felt that it was special, and I wanted to have a special day.  I mean, I didn't exactly want to have a surprise birthday party and pony rides and a three-tiered cake, but I guess I wanted to be made a fuss over! I wanted to feel special. I wanted to go shopping and go out to lunch and pick out new books to read and have a manicure and a massage. What gal wouldn't want to feel like a queen for a day? Well.....

I knew that my husband is very preoccupied and I know that he may not have remembered that it was my Big 4-0 birthday, so about a month before my birthday, I disabused myself of any expectations and dealt with any disappointment right then.  I knew that it wasn't a good time to really make a big deal of my birthday, and I had to be okay with that.  I didn't make any birthday lists.  I didn't get all glammed up.  I "crumbled up" notions of manicures and massages and shopping trips.

But wait! Don't get me wrong here! I'm NOT complaining.....I have the best gifts already that don't cost any money! I have a great husband who is steady, motivated, energetic, funny, stable, talented, and is an optimist and a super good kisser! I have a whole houseful of best friends in my children, with a Miracle Baby on the way too! 

What reason do I have to complain?

I got to go to dinner on my birthday!

My husband and I went to my favorite Mexican restaurant.

I also had my favorite coffee drink!

And okay, I was a trifle let down that nobody seemed to care about my Big Day.  Hey, let's be honest here! I was sad and felt a tiny bit forgotten.  But I'm over it now.  It's okay with me.  I know my husband loves me and I know my kids love me too.  

I'll just consider the major bathroom redo that will be going on in a couple of weeks to be my late birthday present, along with a bedroom redo too! 

If I change my focus to see that every day can be like a birthday, then it seems like a birthday party every day! If I look outside and see my oldest daughter washing the car for me, that sure is a good gift! When my 7 year old gal makes my bed for me, I feel special.  When my 12 year old gets me a glass of water, it's like birthday water!! 

I'm going to work on seeing every day as a Birthday!

Monday, August 5, 2013


I guess this post could be considered another Bumpdate, without all of the stats I normally do with an update.

Earlier today I had a routine 20 week ultrasound.  It's just a normal part of my midwife's protocol, just so she can have all of her i's dotted and her t's crossed.  I was happy to have another ultrasound, because I never get tired of seeing Baby! Also, my midwife's ultrasound machine is pretty ancient, although it does get the job done.  I had had many, many ultrasounds at the office I went to today, so I knew their technology was really advanced and I knew I'd get to see clearer pictures of our Baby.

Upon entering the exam room, the gal, whom I've had so many times before, asked me if I wanted to know the gender, and I told her I already knew that our baby is a girl, due to the fact that I'd already had a few ultrasounds.  I couldn't wait to see her again!!!

So, I laid down on the table and she gooped the gel on my belly, and away we went!

And you can't imagine the first thing that popped up on the screen!

She said, "Ummm, this DEFINITELY is NOT a girl!!!"

And I said, "Excuse me?"

She said, "IT'S A BOY!"

And needless to say, I was totally shocked! I had to do a double-triple take!

She showed me what she was looking at, and lo and behold, it was definitely very well defined BOY PARTS!

 I couldn't believe it! I cried! I was so surprised! 

She looked several times and it was very clear that our baby is a BOY!!!!!

And now, several hours later, I'm still shocked.  

I've had to totally re-order my brain.  

The crate of baby girl clothes that's sitting in my room? We won't need them now.  The girl car seat/stroller combo that we have? Nope.  Can't use it.  The flowered bedding for the crib that I picked out? Uh-uh.  Now we'll have to start all over again! We literally have not one thing for a boy! And my mind is going 100 mph about what we need and what we don't have......

I don't even have a blue sock!

But you know what?? I'm so happy! It was such a happy surprise for me.  I thought for sure that we were not going to have another boy ever again.  I thought I'd never get to have tiny little jeans and cute little plaid shirts and corduroy overalls ever again.  

Now I need restraint! Now I need prayer that I won't go absolutely insane with shopping sprees at Gymboree! Because everyone who knows me knows that I'm a Gymboree FREAK!

And the best news about the whole thing is that he's absolutely thriving.  He's incredibly healthy and so incredibly active and he looks perfect, every bone and every nook and cranny! I have been thanking the Lord all day for this new surprise and just crying at the drop of a hat! The ultrasound tech gave me several pictures of him, and there's a couple of his Boy Parts, and one is a close-up......I keep looking at it and marveling that we're really having a BOY!

I took Sofia, who's 7, with me today as kind of a Date Day, and I let her pick the place where she wanted to eat lunch, and she picked Wendy's.  Before we went there, I told Sofia I needed to go back home and call Daddy (I don't have a cell phone) to see where he was so I could drive madly over to him (he's a mailman) and show him the pictures of our Baby Boy. I had just left the ultrasound place and was driving down the street away from there and I happened to see a mail truck on the side of the street. I looked in it as I was driving by and much to my surprise, it was Daddy! So, I executed the fastest and most perfect U-turn and jumped out of the car.  I ran across the street with the pictures of our Baby Boy flapping in the wind, and just as I got onto the curb he came walking out of the business he had just delivered to! I saw him and screamed "IT'S A BOY!" He probably jumped about a foot!! The last thing he was expecting was me, running like a madwoman up to him and screaming! I showed him the pictures and he just laughed and laughed! He did shed a little tear too! 

So, there's my recap of the biggest and most joyous surprise of my day! Please, don't get me wrong here, I was super ecstatic when I thought we were having a girl.  I was just as happy.  But it IS super nice to finally have another boy after 18 years!! I'm not going to reveal his name yet.....I want to savor it in my heart for awhile! 

And now, I need to shift my mind to blue things and boy things and jeans and sneakers and boy hats!!!!