Friday, January 25, 2013

30 weeks

I guess this isn't really a good belly picture but I'm just glad I remembered to take a picture. So now I'm starting to countdown; although, ten weeks to go still sounds like a long time. I've taken my glucose test which came back negative, received my rogam shot, and had one last ultrasound of the baby. The ultrasound picture was cute even though the umbilical cord was in front of her face. I could see her sweet little fingers next to her mouth. They confirmed that the baby is a girl, she weighs 3 lbs (50%ile), and is head down. I definitely am feeling like I'm in the 3rd trimester now. My lower back, I think it's actually my butt hurts constantly, especially when I walk. It feels like the ligaments/tendons are very loose. Walking up the stairs takes the wind out of me, sleeping is more difficult, bending over to get something takes some strategy, usually asking one of my kids or picking it up with my feet if possible. I'm trying to enjoy this pregnancy as it very well could be my last. Regardless of being uncomfortable, I'm (and all of us) are so excited for this girl's arrival. I've painted her room, bought gear, bought diapers and some clothes I couldn't resist, my mom has a flight to come for a few weeks, and just waiting to greet her. I love feeling her movement and anticipating what she will look like and the first time I hold her in my arms. I'm can't wait to see what she looks like in color and not the black and white ultrasound pictures. 30 weeks, 10 to go, and 1 happy mama.

Potty Training

Hearing those two words put together makes me cringe. I don't look forward to it. My first one, Miss Sydney, is the reason why I cringe. Because of some major digestive tract issues, it took about 3 years before she was potty trained. Jordyn took a weekend. Complete opposite of what I had experienced before. I was extremely grateful for that since Levi was just 3 weeks old and she was only 2 years 3 months old. With Levi, I wanted to try after all the holidays and traveling but before the baby was born. Just a try. I have to admit I wasn't expecting much. I don't like putting all my eggs in one basket. I have heard boys take longer to train. But I've been waiting until he showed me that he was ready and it seems like around age 3 is a good age for boys. One day last week he told me that he needed to be changed and on another occasion I was talking to him and he told me he was peeing in his diaper. This gave me the motivation to try right then and there. 2-3 days later and viola, Levi, my favorite 2 year old, is potty trained.  Skittles were very helpful for him. He loves candy. Now he's been accident free for 5 days now so I'm sayin' he's potty trained, well during the day at least. Of course I can't stop staring at his small little buns in those small little underwear. So I'm 2 for 3 on good experiences with the whole potty training thing, maybe I can change my views on it now.
Speaking of Levi he is such a joy in our life. So chill. Very upbeat, adventurous, daring, smart, and not emotional like some little girls I know. Jordyn started preschool in the afternoon so Levi and I have spent more time in the afternoons. He likes helping me fix things up (I've been nesting). He's my little sidekick and I couldn't ask for a better one. He loves to help me cook, he's always wanting to wrestle (of course I can't do that all that well in my current state of pregnancy), he loves to kiss the baby (my belly), reading books, working with tools, playing catch or kicking a ball back and forth, and playing with the Ipad.

more visitors

Our first visitors that wasn't immediate family-the Rueckerts. Okay, so they're cousins but we're really close to them and they hadn't visited us since we left CA so it was a big treat to have them here for a very quick and fun weekend. On Saturday we went on a hike to South Mountain with the Kieta's and had a picnic. We also did some rock climbing and swimming at our gym and the kids were exhausted by the end of all that. 
 Levi, Jake, Lucy, and Jordyn
 The kids found a pile of hay and couldn't resist throwing it everywhere.
 Our view of downtown phoenix
 A little break during the hike
Marc, Jeff, and Geoff
Bonfire in our driveway Sunday night. Monday they had to leave and the kids have been asking ever since they left when they're coming back.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

tender mercies

Last Sunday I gave a talk about learning to see the Lord's hand in my life. Sometimes I refer to these has His tender mercies. This week I have thought about my past and some of those tender mercies. I wanted to write some down for my kids.
The following are the short versions of each story.
1. Just over Christmas break Jeff took the kids to the park while my mom and I went shopping. On their way home, Jeff let Jordyn ride her bike like 20 seconds before him, Levi, and Sydney followed on their bikes, because she wanted to ride home by herself. Well she took a wrong turn when she was just out of Jeff's sight and was then lost. Jeff thought the best and thought she made it home, but when she wasn't there you can imagine is shear terror. I, on the other hand, had no idea what was going on at the time. While my mom and I were shopping I was feeling so dizzy that I thought I was going to faint and sat down at the store for some time, waiting for the dizziness to go away. I tried to keep shopping with my mom, because that doesn't happen often that I shop without kids, but still wasn't feeling better. I suggested to my mom that I should go home and take a nap since I wasn't feeling good. At one point my mom asked which way she should drive us home and I suggested one way. Luckily, it was the right route, because I ended up seeing a little 5 year old girl riding her bike about a mile from our house with no parent. I saw it was Jordyn. She was scared. I was relieved I picked her up and not some stranger and was initially furious with Jeff that this had happened. All ended well and I think Jeff learned the biggest lesson of everyone. The funny thing is that when we all got home, I felt fine and didn't take or need a nap after all. One might think this was one huge coincidence, but I don't feel that way. It was a blessing, a tender mercy, and Heavenly Father was watching out for us that day.
2. After the summer of my Freshmen year at BYU I was working at Lake Shasta in Redding, CA. One weekend I picked up my friend from the Sacramento airport, roughly a 2-2 1/2 hour drive. This was before cell phones so there was no way of contacting my family who was at the movies that night or my friend I was picking up if something a flat tire. Well half way through my trip I turned to grab something from the back seat. Remember, I was on the fwy so I was driving about 65-70 mph. When I reached back, my elbow hit the gear shift from drive to REVERSE! Panic. I didn't have to be a mechanic to know that going from drive to reverse while traveling 65 mph cannot be a good thing. It might a horrible noise. I quickly put it in neutral and moved to the shoulder. I knew my parents weren't home and without a phone I was feeling scared. All I could do was pray and you can be assured that my prayer was desperate and sincere. When I finished offering a prayer I took a few moments to gain some composure before turning the ignition to start the car. I turned the ignition, the car started, and even sounded normal so I drove. I drove to the airport, picked up my friend, and turned around and drove back to Redding without any car problems. Another example that Heavenly Father knows me, loves me, and wants me safe.
3. School has never come easy for me. Maybe because I didn't start talking until I was 3 years old, or maybe because I had some hearing loss as a kid that required me to sit in front of class and need to see the teacher's face while she was talking, or maybe I'm just not all that smart. There could be lots of reasons, but at BYU, the academics was no cake walk for me. The first semester of my junior year I had to pick a major if I wanted to graduate on time....and I did because I was paying for my own tuition and didn't want to slack and waste money. At this point I ditched an accounting major, since I knew I wouldn't get into that. I dropped travel and tourism because I wasn't really passionate about it, and now I was searching for something new. A major I didn't have to apply and get accepted to, but something that interested me. I went to the temple every Wednesday morning for a few months soul searching for something I could do. I was in a introductory Linguistics class and was liked that fine enough and was praying if maybe I should major in that. One day at the temple doing baptisms, I was at the point where I needed to make a decision quickly if I wanted to graduate on time. I did a name and the last name was Linguist. I was shocked. Weird. How many people have you heard with that last name. A year later I graduated with a BA in linguistics. I was introduced to speech pathology which I earned another BA in and worked for several years as a Speech Pathologist. I also furthered my education in ASL. I knew linguistics was my cup of tea when someone once told me that Linguistics, is "the math of English." I've always loved math but never a mathematician at all.
4. When I was in a coma for 2 weeks. I think I was 4. I'm sure my parents offered many prayers. One night I woke up on my own. In mom moms words, the nurses and doctors were amazed that the affects from being in a coma for 2 weeks weren't worse.
5. One night in HS, my friends had lied to me and I ended up at a frat party with them. I didn't want to be there and had left the party to find a pay phone (again no cell phones at that time). I was calling someone to find a way home. I had called my parents but they didn't answer cuz it was so late. I found a ride to my home. Knocked on my door. My parents didn't answer so I had my friend drive to another pay phone and kept calling my parents. Finally my mom answered and we talked after that about my disappointment in my friends for lying to me and taking me somewhere they knew I wouldn't want to do. My mom told me before she had gone to bed she had said a special prayer for me that night that I would be watched over. That prayer was said, it was heard, and later we found out it was answered.
There are more stories, but again, my point is that we're all children of God and he loves us and He manifests his hand in our life in so many ways.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

new quotes

Jeff: Is it fast sunday today?
Me: no
Jordyn: that means you can't eat treats and that's NUTS.

Jeff sent Sydney to her room. She came out at one point and said, "I want Aunt Brooke and Uncle Matt to adopt me RIGHT now."

Jordyn was cuddling in our bed along with Levi. She said to him, "Levi you have tender boobs."

Jordyn was crying and Jeff asked what was wrong she said, "When I grow up and have a baby they are going to have to give me a shot....[crying ensues]"

Saturday, January 12, 2013

28 weeks

It's official, I'm in my 3rd trimester. The idea of a fourth child, 3rd girl, is becoming increasingly exciting for all of us. This little girl will need big cheeks to kiss and chunky thighs to squeeze from all of us who are itching to love on her. I'm feeling really good minus a few things here and there i.e. the early onset of carpel tunnel. I feel so good that the other day I had the idea that we should all go roller skating. Then I remembered that I'm 7 months prego and that I really shouldn't be on roller skates. I do notice that I get winded more easily. I'm still going to yoga/pilates and zumba; although, my range of motion is decreasing. I still have fun and I'm sure people have fun looking at the pregnant lady getting her groove on to Latin music.

My LDS, female, OB, that is my age is moving to TX. So sad. Her and I were really starting to bond. It's kinda weird to think that she could have been my roommate. I haven't met my new OB. It doesn't matter a whole lot to me. As long as the dr. is competent, educated, and has social tact and I'm good. The previous dr. said this new one is similar to her.

I think I'm already starting the whole "nesting" phase. I've bought many things on craigslist. I know...I know...this is my 4th and you would think I have everything, but when I was in AK I gave most of my baby things away to other people who needed them more than me at the time.  So I got some sweet deals on a duo swing that also serves as a bouncy seat, a stroller and carseat, and a jumping exersaucer thing. I'm very picky. I picked things out almost brand new, only used with 1 child, very clean, and of course pet and smoke free homes. I've also been putting more pictures and decorating in our home.

On Friday I had that glucose test and blood work drawn and next friday I have another ultrasound and a Rogam (sp?) shot in the butt since I'm O-. Excited about the ultrasound not so much about the butt shot. No cravings, lots of kicking, and recently rolling and kicking me way on the side of the abdomen, no swelling, carpel tunnel-mostly in the middle of the night, officially sleeping on my side, slip on shoes and maxi skirts are my favorite.

We're open to girl names. Any ideas of girl names would be appreciated.

Sunday, January 6, 2013


For FHE tonight we decided to teach about concept of making goals and working on them.  I wrote down our goals for the year and then next year we'll see how we did.
Pray by himself without anyone helping him
Learning to pee and pooh on the toilet and wear underwear during the day

Bear her testimony in sacrament meeting by herself without any help.
Count to 100
Learn all the phonograms
Learn to tie shoes

Read the entire Book of Mormon before she gets baptized (December 2013)
Make it to the top of the #4 course at the rock wall (at the gym we go to)
Start her bubble gum business and save money (she wants to save for a puppy)
Learn to read a clock

Remember to pray everyday on my own.
Read entire BOM with Sydney everyday.
Enjoy life and have a good attitude especially with having a new baby and getting less than ideal sleep.
Try and take a few trapeze lessons
Work on losing baby weight and feeling good about how I look....NAKED (yeah, I said it).

Complete Duty to God requirements
Learn much about and magnify new calling as Scout Master and leading the Deacons
Getting an A in his Human Anatomy Class he's starting next week

I also plan on posting this to our fridge so we can help each other with our goals and remember them.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


Every year Jeff's grandma has a big nye party at their home in Whittier. We've missed the past few years so we had fun seeing the entire family again.
 Jeff's parents, siblings, spouses, and nephews.
 At the party. Grandma with most of her great grandchildren. She goes all out and gets everyone a present which is probably 60-70 people.
 After eating dinner, everyone sitting around waiting for presents to be opened or the famous gift exchange that's a game. We ended up with a hose and lantern and a treasure chest with some candy in it.

 Jordyn and her cousin Jake. They're 4 months apart.
 Sydney and Aunt Luisa. She had given Sydney the friendship bracelet kit and was getting her set up with that.
 Jordyn and another cousin, Luke. They're a month apart in age.
 The whole crew. We were missing Adam, Amanda's family, Michael, and I'm sure I'm missing someone else.
 Levi and his cousin Matt. 

 The 3 pregger girls. I'm due beginning of April, Luisa is due the end of June, and Shannon is due in August. Luisa and I are having girls and I think we're all sending our girl power to Shannon (she has 3 boys).
 Counting down and then we run outside and bang on pots and pans.
They made it until midnight!

Christmas time

Our first Christmas in Arizona. I did miss the snow at Christmas time. It adds an ambiance to the holiday. We still managed to have fun and make some memories once again. My parents came to our home for Christmas. We made sugar cookies and frosted them.

 The kids went crazy on the sprinkles as you can tell.

 Before church on Sunday. That night we went to see the Christmas lights and nativity sets from all over the world at the Mesa Temple.

 Christmas Eve morning a group of us went caroling at the Gilbert Mercy Hospital. After we checked out the maternity ward upstairs where I'll be delivering.

Christmas morning: The kids run through the paper hanging up, we sing songs and say a prayer before opening gifts. This year we all made each other homemade gifts and we opened those on Christmas Eve night. For breakfast we have our traditional breakfast burritos we made ahead of time.

 Just in case you're wondering, on Christmas day the kids are allowed to play with Jack Sherman (the elf) before he leaves.
 Mom opening the yearly photo calendar I make for her
  Both Levi and Jordyn loved their new bikes
 And Sydney loves her electric razor!

activity day girls

For church I work with the 8 and 9 year old girls. We meet twice a month at my home and another woman who helps me. In December we had a christmas cookie exchange and went caroling around my neighborhood. Although Sydney and Jordyn aren't old enough, they look forward to every other Wednesday to participate in the fun things we do. It's kinda like Girl Scouts without all the dues. We do a lot of service, developing our talents, and learning new skills.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Jordyn's 5th b-day

Jordyn couldn't wait for her birthday. It was torture to wait 6 long days from Sydney's birthday until hers. When she woke up she ate donuts and pancakes and then opened one of her presents, this Merida doll.
 For lunch she wanted to go to the restaurant with "the grapes." After some time I finally figured out she meant Olive Garden. She got shy when they sang to her but still enjoyed her treat.

 After lunch we had to pick up Sydney because the 3 of them had a dentist appt. I know, no fun, to go to the dentist on your birthday, but he gave her 2 movie tickets so it was worth it! After the dentist we headed to gymnastics. For dinner she requested salmon, spaghetti, and salad. haha. She makes us laugh.  And for dessert rainbow cupcakes and ice cream.

Love this new big 5 year old!