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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Random Ramblings......

Thou Shall Not Covet........

The 10th Commandment applies to the blogosphere too!!

In the blogosphere we see glimpses into the lives of other people. It is easy to get caught up in the whole --- I wish I had a cuter blog, more readers, could do crafts, could decorate, have a better house, could write fabulous stories, get more comments....... the list goes on

Ask yourself --- Who is your blog for? Yourself? Your Family? Your Friends? What is the purpose?

Be happy with who you are and what you have to share....

Thank you......

Thank you everyone who took the time to read and comment about our adoption story. It was fun writing it and it felt good to share. Though these posts I was able to meet some other great adoptive families and also a few people with Heart Babies and VCFS.

Update on Grandma......

She is in a nursing home right now. She is so mad and she really wants to go home. She has been trying to recruit us all to move in with her to take care of her. It is truly heart breaking - she has a very small 2 bedroom house and she would totally go even more crazy if one of us moved our families in with her. The kids would send her over the edge. She needs full time around the clock care.

She has this thing that is called Sundowners -- it is something associated with Alzheimer's. She is pretty lucid during the day but at night she gets totally confused.

I don't want to get old........

Great giveaway!!!!

Run over to Nicole's house and enter this contest for a beautiful chandelier!!!!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Welcome SITS!!!




Thank you Heather & Tiffany for choosing me to be featured today!!!


I hope you all enjoy my posts. I have had so much fun checking out all of the featured bloggers and my blogroll keeps growing!!

Come back On Friday - for Frugal Tip Friday!!! And please vote on the poll!!!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Potty Training.....

I haven't been here in bloggy much for the past day or so. Caleb accidently went potty on the toilet.... he was surprised and Micayla and I started cheering for him. He THRIVES on getting a reaction from people, so I have now pretty much spent the last day and a half taking him "popy" Yesterday he didn't do as well as Saturday and Sunday - but he's trying. Just last week I was telling Matt that I didn't think he was anywhere near ready --- I guess he's showing me!! Micayla has wanted to be right there in the middle of everything - she's a very supportive big sister but I am sure the guy needs a little privacy. I at least am getting her to stand back as far as the bathroom door - she's right there ready to cheer and sing "Pee Pee in the Potty!" I can't complain though - I am looking forward to getting a $60 a month raise by not having to buy diapers. With all my coupon/bargain shopping $60 could go A VERY LONG WAY!!!! Wish me luck!

I would also like to wish my sister Staci a very Happy 26th Birthday!!!!!!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Crazy Coupon Freak, Part 5

Are you feeling the pinch? It seems that over the past few weeks there just hasn't been that many great sales - I haven't been very excited about shopping.

I came across a great tip that could really help keep people under their grocery budget. Leave your checkbook/debit/credit cards at home. Go to the bank and withdraw your grocery budget in cash. Enter the store armed with your cash, a calculator, your list, your coupons and your weekly menu. Buy only what you need.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

You want an IPOD..... You know you do!!!

This is the last week of the 6 Weeks of Summer Giveaway at SITS..... Go over and comment and you can win an IPOD!!!! Don't forget to tell them that I sent you!!!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Mormon Tabernacle Choir with The Osmonds

Last night we went to the Pioneer Day Commemoration Concert. It was the Mormon Tabernacle Choir with The Osmond Family. It was so good!! I really like the Osmonds. They sang and danced around just like they did when they were teenagers. They sang a lot of their songs. Of course Donny sang Puppy Love and Marie sang Paper Roses. They incorporated the Choir into their songs beautifully and with a little humor. It was very touching when they had the 2 oldest brothers join them on stage. They are both hearing impaired and they "sang" along in sign language. It was great --- if you appreciate great music I highly recommend watching it tonight on PBS Channel 11 in Utah or you can watch via the internet here.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Frugal Tip Friday 7/25/08

OK -- a little business first..... For right now I am dropping the Mr. Linky feature from Frugal Tip Friday. Link your your own Frugal Tip Friday post back here and leave a comment here. I love reading all of the Frugal Tips that you all are posting!!
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Have you heard this song from Barbara Streisand?

Father has a business strictly second hand
Everything from toothpicks to a baby-grand
Stuff in our apartment came from fathers store
Even things I'm wearing someone wore before
Its no wonder that I feel abused
I never get a thing that ain't been used

I'm wearing second hand hats
Second hand clothes
Thats why they call me
Second hand rose

Even our piano in the parlor
Father bought for ten cents on the dollar
Second hand pearls
I'm sick of second hand curls
I never get a single think thats new
Even jake, the plumber, he's a man I adore
Had the nerve to tell me hes been married before!

Everyone knows that I'm just
Second hand rose
From second avenue!
From second avenue! nu!

One more time!
Everyone knows that I'm just
Second hand rose
(from second avenue!)
From what?
Lets see if you know the fills!
Once while strooling
Through the ritz a girl got my goat...
(she nudged her friend
And said oh look there goes
My old fur coat)
You don't need me!

Everyone knows that I'm just
Second hand rose
From second avenue!
(ya cant beat the egg-creams!)
Good! second avenue!
(there is more between me
And fifth avenue, I tell ya)
Right! second avenue!

My Frugal Tip for Friday is buying things second hand. Whether it's a thrift store, yard-sale, or consignment sale there are great buys to be made. You can buy lots of gently used items for pennies on the dollar.

I have been shopping for my kids clothes for the past couple of years at the Just Between Friends consignment sale. This is a great way to buy and sell children's clothing, toys and other items. They also have maternity stuff. They are pretty picky about the things that are sold. I have purchased lots of name brand stuff that is almost new for just a few bucks. For those of you in the sales are being held in just the next couple of weeks.

Happy Shopping!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Adoption Story --- Part 15 - The Final Chapter

Part 14
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Thursday September 8th, Caleb was 3 days old. Matt had to go to school. Paramedic school was so difficult and they were so strict he couldn’t even get out of class to go pick up the baby so we had to make arrangements with Michelle, the Agency and the hospital to do the “placement” in the evening. We got to the agency at 6 pm. Michelle, her mom, and little Caleb were already there.

We went into our caseworker’s office to wait and wait and wait. We were waiting for Michelle to sign the papers relinquishing her parental rights. Her caseworker came and pulled ours out into the hallway. She told her that Michelle was having a hard time (of course she was) and that Satan was working hard against her, she might not sign the papers. Our caseworker came back in and she told us what was going on and she suggested that we pray. We were both crying. Our caseworker offered a prayer.

Within about 15 minutes Michelle’s caseworker came back. The papers were signed. We followed the caseworkers into another room. In walked Michelle holding little Caleb. He was gorgeous!! She looked so tired. She was in pain both physically and mentally. We talked for a while. She asked if I wanted to hold him. My arms were aching for him. We talked a little more and then she said she wanted Matt to hold him. She said that she needed to see him in his daddy’s arms. Then she held him again for a few minutes. She kissed him goodbye and placed him in my arms. She left crying. It was all over.

This experience that night was one of the most heart wrenching experiences that we have been through. We were so happy and overjoyed while at the same time we felt like the lowest scum on the face of the earth – we had taken this woman’s child. We stayed there for a little while crying. I held Caleb close while Matt loaded us the car with gifts from Michelle and her mom and all the stuff the hospital sends home with new babies.

We got home at about 9:30. We were greeted by two sets of happy grandparents and a very proud big sister.

Caleb was healthy and happy. March 25th 2006 we went to the Temple once again – this time to have Caleb sealed to us for eternity.


The End.
Sorry we have decided that our family is complete….unless some strange turn of events takes place…….

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

"To A Sleeping Beauty....."

I love my dad! He is a manly-man. A great camper and fisherman.  He's a die-hard University of Utah Football fan.  When I was growing up I loved the fact that my dad got to go to work in jeans and t-shirts.  The up-ity people in our neighborhood thought that he didn't have a real job because he didn't wear a suit to work.  Apparently making sure that the residents in the city had good, clean, delicious drinking water or being a firefighter for 21 years wasn't a real job.  What are those people doing now? Still working? Um my dad was able to retire at 53 years old - he has a great retirement job -- yeah he still gets to wear jeans....





Matt and I were talking the other day about "Girls Camp". Girls Camp is an important part of the youth program in the LDS Church. Girls ages 12-17 are encouraged to go. Ours was in the mountains above a small farming town. It was up the hill from a well known polygamist family that was pretty much bad news!! (No LDS/Mormons are not polygamists) A few times my dad came up to be our Priesthood leader - basically a man to watch over us and to help keep us safe. It was a lot of fun to have my dad there.  He was always willing to join in the fun and helped the older girls prank the younger girls.



My first year of camp, when I was 12,  he didn't come up. That year the leaders had the dads write a letter to their daughters and they were given to us one night. My dad is not a man of words. He hates talking on the phone and I am sure that writing a letter was not easy for him. I wish I still had that letter. I have no idea what happened to it.



In the letter I do know that my dad referenced this song/poem.  He talked about this song a lot when I was growing up.  We used to have it on a record album.



TO A SLEEPING BEAUTY

Recorded by Jimmy Dean

Written by L. Markes



Dear daughter, I tiptoed in your room tonight and I looked down at

you smilin' in your sleep. You were so lovely my heart nearly broke;

and I thought how much like Sleeping Beauty a little girl is. When I

tuck you in at night I never know how old you'll be when you wake. One

evening you crawl on your dad's lap and throw your arms around his neck,

the next morning you might be much too grown up for that sort of thing.



You're so quickly approaching the awkward age, too young to drive the

car and yet too old to be carried in the house half asleep on daddy's

shoulder. I have a secret that I've never told you, Sleeping Beauty,

you're going on a very exciting trip. You'll travel from yesterday all

the way to tomorrow. It's a rapid journey and you'll travel light,

leaving behind you - measles, mumps, freckles, bumps, bubble gum and me.



I promise not to feel too hurt when you discover that the world is more

important than your daddy's lap. Yesterday you were blue jeans and pig tails,

the neighborhood's best tree climber. Tomorrow you'll be blue organdy and

pony tails and you'll view the world from a loftier perch - a pair of high

heel shoes.



Yesterday you could mend a doll's broken leg with a hug; tomorrow you'll

be able to break a young man's heart with a kiss. Humh! Humh! Yesterday you

could get lost one aisle away from me at a supermarket - now I have to worry

about losing you down another aisle to some strange young man. You see,

just at the point where you're growing pains stop, mine begins. Yesterday

you were kind of a pain in the neck when you were around, tomorrow you'll

be an ache in my heart when your not.



Tomorrow you'll lay aside your jump rope and tie up the telephone lines

and that little boy that used to push you in the mud; well, he'll fight to

sit out a dance with you. The clock is countin' the minutes for you and the

sky upstairs is savin' its' brighest stars; - and the sun is waitin' with

its' shiniest day.



Oh I, I can't expect you to live in a doll house forever. Sooner or later,

the butterfly sheds it's cocoon and the smallest bird must try its wings.

But when you grow up and out of my arms; when you finally get too big for my

shirts, I'll still recall how you used to scatter dust and dolls and partially

through ev'ry room in the house; but you spread sunshine too. The dust is

settled, your mom picked up the dolls; - but the sunshine will always fill

the corners of our hearts.



So, here I am talking in your sleep, because, well if you saw this look on

my face, you'd laugh and if I spoke with this lump in my throat, I'd cry.

Yea! honey when I looked at you tonight you were a Sleeping Beauty. So, I

tiptoed over and I kissed you - you didn't wake up, I knew you wouldn't.

According to the legend only the handsome young prince can open your eyes

and I'm just the father of the future bride.



So you sleep on pretty thing, tomorrow you'll wake and you'll be a young

lady and you won't even realize that you've changed courses in the middle

of a dream. But you might notice a little change in me; I'll look a little

different somehow. A little sadder, a little wiser, but a whole lot richer.

Tonight, I kissed a princess and I feel like a king.




If you want to hear the recording of this follow this link







Tuesday, July 22, 2008

My Most Embarrasing High School Memory...

Jaci of Ravings of a Mad Housewife is having a contest!!! It is in honor of her 10th high school reunion. I am thinking of soon telling you about my high school experience..... it was a long time ago so I better get it all down before I forget.

For this contest I am required to share my Most Embarrassing High School Experience. Here ya go..... I was totally not paying attention and I walked right into the boys restroom. Not just barely in --- all the way in. Luckily I only saw one boy in there and he had just zipped up. It still didn't totally dawn on me I just looked at him and said, "Oh this is the boys bathroom?" Then I nearly passed out right there on the tile. This guy was nice and didn't laugh at my face --- but I am sure that he had lots of fun telling his friends.

Edited for Personal Security

This post was inspired by Mama's Losin' It. Kat has been answering fan mail. Someone jokingly asked her for her Social Security Number. Of course she posted a fake one - but when her husband was reading the post he got all mad at her. Her post as the whole conversation with her husband, but I totally love this quote, "You know...I don't know what to be more offended by, that I'm your wife and you really think I'm stupid enough to put my social security number on the internet...or that you don't know my social security number...shouldn't you know that???"

This post of hers made me laugh because of a similar conversation that Matt and I had a few weeks ago when Matt was reading the adoption story posts I have been writing....

Matt: Sherri who is this Susan you are writing about?

Me: Did you read the story? Do you recognize that it's Micayla's adoption story?

Matt: Yeah but who is Susan? That's not Micayla's birthmom's name.

Me: You don't really think that I would use the real name did you?

Matt: Oh Okay. I just wondered.

I am glad that our significant others are watching out for us and hoping that we don't post too much personal information on our blogs.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Adoption Story --- Part 14

In case you missed anything:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11
Part 12
Part 13

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Later that day we our caseworker called and she told us that Michelle wanted us to call her at the hospital. She gave us the direct line phone number. She assured us that everything was ok.

We called that evening. Matt on one phone and me on the other. Michelle just told us about Caleb and how she was feeling. She wanted to know how we were feeling? If we were excited? Who we had called? We talked to her a about 45 minutes. She asked us to call her again tomorrow. Which we did.

In a way these were difficult phone calls. We were so excited about the baby and we wanted her to know that – but at the same time we knew that this was a difficult process for her.

On Wednesday Michelle’s caseworker called me, this is unusual. Matt was at school. She told me that she had something she needed to tell me about Caleb. She asked if I was sitting down. A million thoughts were going through my mind…. Was he sick? Had Michelle changed her mind? What was wrong? She told me that Caleb was part Hispanic. I was waiting for the bad news. That was the news. That was not an issue at all for us. She told me that Michelle was worried that we were going to change our minds. The caseworker told me that our caseworker was outside of house with something for me. She told me to call Michelle as soon as I saw my gift.

I went outside and our caseworker was there. She gave me some photos of my little man.

I went inside and called Michelle I thanked her over and over for the photos. She asked if we still wanted him. I cried. I told her that of course that we still wanted him. She cried and asked that Matt call her later. Matt called her and reassured her that we were happy and that no matter what color his skin we wanted him and we loved him.

To be continued........

How do you cope?

How are you coping in these difficult times - war, rising fuel costs, rising cost of consumables and household goods, a what seems at time hopeless upcoming Presidental election, or just an ordinary bad day? How do you keep yourself from being bitter or pessimistic?

I am just wondering how other people are feeling and how you all cope.

I have a tendency to brush things under the carpet.... worry about them later. Drink a Diet Coke and bake cookies to make myself feel better. I also try to play more with my kids, be intimate with my honey and NOT clean up my house.....



Saturday, July 19, 2008

Contests and Awards

We all love to win something right????

Run people do not walk over to SITS and enter the great contest!!! For a CAMERA!!! Oh how I need to win!!!!! Ok --well I want you to win too!!! Anyway tell them that I sent you!!!

There is also another great contest over at the Saucy Eats Blog.... $50 Williams Sonoma Gift Card!!! Holy cow that store is almost like Heaven.... there are great recipes posted on there everyday. There are also tips too. I loved these Slow Cooker Tips. Check it out and then got enter you fools...oh yeah once again...tell them I sent you PLEASE!!!


Now on to the award….. My good friend Nicole gave me a blogging award. Thank you Nicole!!

Once an award is received, the rules are as follows:

1. Put the logo on your blog.

2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.

3. Nominate at least seven other blogs.

4. Add links to those blogs on your blog.

5. Leave a message for your nominee on their blog.

Ok, now for the people I nominate in no particular order:

Stretch Marks: What a GREAT writer!!! Did you know she’s going to have a book out?

Z’s Mom: What a cute blog, a cute girl and an adorable little boy!!!

Seven Clown Circus: Amazing woman!!! That’s all I can say….AMAZING!!

Texas Word Tangle: Ya’ll she’s from Texas!!! When I read her blog I try to do it in my fake Texas accent…. A great read!!

Jessica – Me and Mine: I just found her blog today!!! BUT…. It’s really cute and she is a photography hobbyist too!!!

Amy: She leaves great comments!! What a sweetie!!!

Patti’s Pantry: I love good food people – I admit – I eat too much…. Patti has some great recipes!!!

There you have it….. There are so many bloggers that I love --- but this time I had to pick just 7…..


Adoption Story --- Part 13

In case you missed anything:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11
Part 12
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Friday afternoon we went to the agency again. This time we were meeting Michelle and her mom. Micayla came with us so they could meet her, she didn’t stay the whole time just about 15 minutes – then my mom came to pick her up.

When Michelle came in she immediately started to cry. She was so cute and so nervous. She asked us a couple of times, “Are you sure you want my baby?” Of course we were sure. We chatted with them for almost 2 hours – but the time went so quickly. We made plans to meet again in 2 weeks.

During the weeks before the baby was born we exchanged several letters with her. From reading her letters we could tell that she had had a difficult childhood. Her parents had been divorced for many years. There had been abuse, mental breakdowns, and foster care in her past.

The next time we met we brought her favorite flavor of ice cream and she brought us a game that she and her family liked to play. We talked for a little while and then we sat around a big conference table and she kicked our butts at the game.

We met 2 more times before the baby was born. We chatted laughed and she helped me tease Matt. We really bonded with her. She told us time and time again that we were what she wishes that she would have had growing up.

The final time that we saw her she was in a lot of pain. She was having contractions and the visit was cut short because her mom had to take her to the hospital. It was a false alarm but we were worried about her.

On September 2nd we got a phone call from our caseworker telling us that the baby would be born on Labor Day, the 5th, via c-section. Michelle wanted to make sure we knew and that we were ready. Since it was a c-section they would be in the hospital until Thursday.

On September 5th Matt, Micayla and I were all a little under the weather. We had colds. It was also the day of Hurricane Katrina. We decided that we wanted Jamba Juice but we also didn’t want to be away from the phone. I went with the promise from Matt that he would call my cell phone if he heard anything. He didn’t call me. When I walked in the house I just figured that we hadn’t heard yet. I sat down by him and he looked at me and said “7lbs 8 oz.” We wept.

To be continued..................

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Frugal Tip Friday 7/18/08

If you need to see how this works click here. Don't forget to link your post back here. And also don't forget to comment!! You are welcome to use the "Frugal Tip Friday" picture on your blog!!

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I have been trying really hard to consolidate my errands -- getting everything done in one day. By doing this I am saving gas money and time. The only problem is that when you are out of your house with your kids so long you all kind of get a little hungry. I am guilty of swinging through Wendy's but even buying things off the value menu add up.

Here's my new idea...... pack a lunch.... I have a small cooler that I could throw a couple sandwiches, fruit and drinks into. We can either eat in the car or a great idea to keep your kids entertained at the grocery store would be to let them eat their lunches in the cart while you shop (make sure you clean the cart thoroughly with Clorox Wipes).

What's your Frugal Tip for Friday?

Pop'rs

A couple weeks ago I was one of 10 lucky winners, thank you Veggie Mom, to win some Pop'rs. Pop'rs are marketed as a way to get you family (kids) to eat more veggies. I got my 2 flavors of Pop'rs yesterday so I put them to the test. The flavors that we got (my choice) were Taco and Buffalo. I tried them plain and quickly learned why they were called Pop'rs. They are like 'Pop Rocks' - remember those. They taste really good - once you get over how strange they are.

I sprinkled some over the carrots that we had for dinner. Micayla asked why her food was singing. Then when she took a bite she said, "Oh my gosh! My carrots are singing in my mouth." As strange as I thought they were I have to admit they actually worked - the kids ate more carrots then they probably would have anyway.

There are lots of flavors of Pop'rs. I may get some of the sweet flavors - they would be good on ice cream, yogurt, pudding, or cupcakes.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Thank you Z's Mom!!


Z's Mom gave me a little bloggy award!!! Thank you so much!!! She said some very nice things about me!!! I really appreciate all the great comments that I am getting and the support in my adoption stories.

I will now share the love:

Insane Momma --- Just look at what I have to look forward to with teenagers. I love reading her stories!!!! This girl tells it like it is!!!

Deb --- What a cute family and man can you believe the patience of this woman? She is a 1st grade teacher!!! Thank you for the Gateway Discovery Passes!!!

Janae --- As an aspiring photographer myself I am BLOWN AWAY by Janae's talent!! Janae I want to meet you somewhere so you can teach me to take urban photos!!! Janae is also a fellow penny pincher!!!

Fruit Cocktail Cake

A while back I had a friend bring me some cupcakes with fruit cocktail baked into them. They were really good. I had forgotten all about them until this morning when I was trying to think of a yummy cake to make.

Here's the recipe that I came up with:
1 White Cake Mix
3 Eggs
1/4 C. Oil
1 Can of Fruit Cocktail with the juice
1 small box of vanilla pudding

Mix it all together add the fruit cocktail last and then just mix that in gently so the fruit doesn't get mashed.

Bake in a greased 9x13 pan for 45 minutes at 350.

I just topped it with some fat free whipped topping. I was thinking though that this would make a great poke cake. Poke holes in the top and pour pudding over the top.

My kids loved this cake!!! Caleb was excited that it had "beeps" in it --- beeps are grapes


Sweet Grandma

I can't believe that it is Tuesday already!! This past weekend has been a difficult one. On Saturday we had to send my sweet grandma to the hospital in an ambulance. She lost her mind.
Saturday was Farmington's parade and it goes past Grandma's house. Every year for as long as I can remember we have all congregated there to watch the parade.

Sweet Grandma was like my second mom. Since my mom worked grandma was the one who took care of us when we were little. Her house is the one we all threatened to run away to. Grandma is now 91 years old. She has been in overall very good health. For the past couple of years she has been declining a bit. She's been falling and forgetting things. My sister's and I have taken a big role in taking care of her. We have taken her shopping and helped her around the house a little. We have all be afraid that one of us would be the one to find her...sniff... no longer alive.

Staci thought the nightmare had come true. On Saturday morning Staci and TJ found grandma crumpled up on the floor against the wall and the TV stand. She was asleep or in some degree of unconsciousness. They woke her up. She fought them. She did not know them. Her house was a wreck. The TV was on. The front door was open. She was still wearing yesterday's clothes. Her favorite meal - a Banquet Salisbury Steak dinner was on the counter, in the box thawed out, uneaten. Her companion, a little white dog that only likes her, "Rebel" was running around crazy.

It appears as though she crawled around on the floor all night pulling things off of the lower shelves and out of drawers in at least 2 of her rooms. Poor sweet grandma.

The paramedics came and took her to the hospital. After lots of tests and such nothing conclusive has been determined. She is going through bouts of confusion and lucidity. Sometimes she knows us. She can't remember who has visited her. On Sunday night she wanted to leave the hospital - she pulled out her IV and catheter, pulled off her heart monitor and took off her "winter clothes" which was every stitch of clothing she had on. She wanted to go home and make sandwiches for her husband (Grandpa passed away seven years ago). Luckily she can't remember what happened. There are just some things she doesn't need to know.

Right now she is still in the hospital. In the next few days she will be moving to her new home. She will be moving into a nursing home. It's sad. It really is!! She needs full time care. It will be much safer for her.


Monday, July 14, 2008

Adoption Story --- Part 12

In case you missed anything:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11

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So we sit there for a few more minutes and she’s telling us something. I don’t even know what. I was now wondering about the “good stuff:. Right when she was ready to get into the “good stuff” Micayla pooped so I had to take her in the bathroom to change her. She was just over 2 ½ years old. When I got her in the bathroom I started to cry a little. I asked her if she knew what we were going to get at our house. She smiled at me and said, “A baby.”

One of the policy changes was that they now talk to the adoptive families about the birth mom and baby instead of just having the birth mom sending something. This way the caseworker can make sure that the adoptive family is open to different situations, medical issues, etc. She told a little about this girl, her family, upbringing and she gave us a small bit of information about the birth father. There were some mental health issues but nothing that worried us. We were excited!! We knew that the baby was due in about 13 weeks. The one thing that she couldn’t tell us was the sex of the baby. The birthmom had a special way that she wanted to tell us. Our caseworker said to expect an announcement on Thursday and to plan on our first meeting with the birthmom on Friday.

Matt had to go back to school Tuesday night. We decided not to tell anyone about the baby until the next day when we could do it together.

My mom called and wanted to know what had happened at the agency. I just told her that they really just had some policy changes that they wanted to tell us about and that it was pretty stupid. That was hard. I wanted to tell her so bad.

Wednesday morning we spent time running around looking for a gift that we could give to Michelle and her mom on Friday. Our caseworker had given us a couple of ideas of things that she liked. I painted “I’m a big sister” on a shirt for Micayla.

Wednesday night we went to my parent’s house. We went in a talked to them for a while and waited until they saw Micayla’s shirt. It seriously took like 20 minutes. My mom looked at Micayla and said “Hi big sister” but she still didn’t get it.

Me: “Mom do you get it? Do you see what her shirt says?”

Mom: “I know what it says. Where did you get it?”

Me: “I made it. Do you get it?”

Mom: “What does it mean”

Me: “What do you think it means?

She finally figured it out. Then my dad put down his newspaper. They were excited!!

We then went to Matt’s parent’s house. His mom read the shirt and figured it out within about 30 seconds of us being there.

It was fun telling everyone that way.

On Thursday our case worker called and told us that we had a package. We went to the agency and opened a box wrapped in blue. When it opened blue balloons came out announcing “It’s a boy!!!” We cried!!! It didn’t matter to us whether it was a boy or girl, but I know that Matt was extra excited about the prospect of having a son.


To be continued.......

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Great Coupons from today's paper.....

$1/1 Powerade --- this is on sale frequently for $.69-$1.00 so it would be free! Depending on your store you may even be able to get overage ---- which means that say the price is $.60 (it is at Walmart) use the $1 coupon and basically get free Powerade plus $.40 back...

The other great one is $2.25 Electrasol Gelpacks or Tabs.... I love the Electrasol tabs!!! I think the shelf price at Walmart is $2.88 or something ---- and it goes on sale frequently at other stores.... Gotta love cheap dish soap!!!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Random thoughts for Saturday....

OK so I am a geek --- I forgot about Frugal Tip Friday!!! Forgive me!!!!

Don't you hate it when you can't find a sippy cup? Right now we have at least one missing. It is one of our favorite because it is bigger than the others. Caleb drinks milk all day long so the bigger cups work out great for us. The thought that somewhere in my house there is a cup, I don't know how full, of yucky sticky 3 day old milk. I know what you are thinking....how messy is her house if she can't find a sippy cup.... it's not too messy! I promise! Those things just have a way of hiding!!!

What has happened to manners? Last night I went to the drive through of a favorite ice cream shop here in town. When the annoying teenage kid handed me out the ice cream I thanked him. I thanked him even though I had been sitting in the line for over 10 minutes..... His response, " U--huh" It's not just him ---- I am always IRRITATED when I thank someone and the response is less than appropriate ---- the response should be YOU'RE WELCOME!!!! Not U-Huh or yep......

Have you been waiting for the next part of the adoption story? I will get it posted soon..... I haven't forgotten it. I have been helping my sweetie build a new deck at our house... It will be nice!!!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Adoption Story --- Part 11

In case you missed anything:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10

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LDS Family Services doesn’t allow you to apply for another adoption until after your child’s first birthday. We went to the agency and picked up the paper work to reapply in December 2003. We were approved again in March 2004. Then they wait began. This was a transitional time at our Agency, they kept changing around our caseworkers, thankfully they were more than willing to work around the fact that we did not want the same caseworker that we had for Micayla’s adoption.

We received several phone calls from the agency about babies. The babies they were calling us about were special needs. My, my did we hear some sad stories. We heard about micro-preemies, homelessness, cerebral palsy, and addiction. While we were very grateful to the caseworkers for keeping us on their minds we just didn’t feel that a special needs adoption was what we were supposed to do. We weren’t trying to be picky or anything it just didn’t feel right.

This wait wasn’t quite as hard as the first, although I still lost it when my baby sister announced in 2004 that she was pregnant and then my other sister announced that she was pregnant while Staci was in the hospital giving birth. At least we had Micayla and if no other babies were meant to be with us that was something we were alright with. In May 2005 Micayla had heart surgery and that occupied my time.

About the time of her surgery Micayla started doing some interesting things. She would look at the ceiling and laugh or wave. We would ask her what she was looking at and she always said “A baby.” Did she know something that we didn’t?

On Friday July 1st at about 5 pm our caseworker called us and told us that there were some policy changes that they needed to talk to us about. She was pretty insistent that we come in on Tuesday. Matt was in paramedic school and he had Tuesday afternoon off so we set the appointment.

It really didn’t dawn on us right away how strange it was that they call us the Friday before the July 4th weekend to set an appointment for July 5th. By the time the 4th came we kind of talked about, almost jokingly, that maybe they had a baby for us.

Tuesday came with the promise to our families that we would call them as soon as we found out what was going on.

On the way to the appointment we kids of decided that we were tired of the rollercoaster and that if they told us something “stupid” we were just going to give up and have them pull our file.

The beginning of the appointment was pretty dumb. The case worker just asked us some questions related to our file. Then she talked to us about a couple of policy changes that were in the works, nothing seemed so important that we needed to come in right away.

At one point during the conversation our caseworker asked if we had any questions. I asked, “So where’s our baby?” Her response was, “We have to get through this part before we get to the good stuff.”

To be continued.........................

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Welcome Saucy Chefs

Yeah I am featured for Monday's Secrets In the Sauce Recipe blog!!!
Welcome Saucy Bloggers.
You will find a list of my posted recipes on the right hand side of the blog.
I post recipes frequently so come back any time.

Take a look around and enjoy!

Adoption Story --- Part 10

In case you missed anything:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9

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This time Micayla only had the breathing tube for 3 days.

We resolved ourselves to spending Christmas in the NICU. Matt and I were talking about this just recently – although it was hard it was probably the best Christmas ever. We missed out on a lot of the bustle and focused ourselves more on the meaning of Christmas and the precious gift that Heavenly Father had entrusted us with. Santa visited the NICU on the 23rd and he held a weak little girl. She had now dropped more than a pound below her birth weight.

Christmas morning we went to Matt’s parent’s house for our traditional Christmas breakfast. We then went to the hospital. Matt’s parents and grandma came to the hospital for lunch. On Christmas the hospital provided complementary Chicken Cordon Bleu or Prime Rib for the families and their guests. That night we left and went to my parent’s house for dinner and then my parents went to see Micayla Christmas night.

The next week of recovery was hard. Part of the recovery included nothing in Micayla’s stomach for 10 days. She received all nourishment through her PIC line. She was getting a little stronger but she was so hungry. I was learning how to bathe her, clean her ostomy site and change her bag.

On January 3rd another problem was found in her intestines. This would require another surgery. The surgeons decided it could wait a couple more weeks and they were hopeful that they could repair her ostomy at the same time. But she would not be allowed to leave the hospital until after the next surgery. Also on the 3rd I was surprised when I got to the hospital to see her for the 1st time without any oxygen. She ended up going off and on it for the next couple of weeks.

We had another scare while waiting for the next surgery. Micayla's PIC line became infected and it had to be removed. She spiked a high fever and had to have a spinal tap. She had to go on high doses of antibiotic.

Her next surgery was on January 21st. Less than 24 hours later she was off the breathing tube. In this surgery they were able to repair her ostomy and they had to remove another smaller portion of her intestines.

Our next battle was just getting her to eat and keep it down. This was a lesson in being an advocate for your child. In order to bring her home she had to eat all of her food by mouth and not through the feeding tube in her nose. We had to get mad at the nurses for not waking her up or taking the time to feed her. We also had to go through more tests and medications and they decided that she had reflux.

On February 7th I decided to take matters into my own hands to prove to the doctors that she could eat. I asked them if I they could move us into a room and let me stay with her for 24 hours to take care of her by myself. They agreed. That night we did her car seat check – she had to sit in her car seat for 30 minutes and not have any oxygen problems.

Then they moved us into a room just off the NICU. I slept (yeah right) on the couch and fed her and took care of her through the night. Everything went great and in the morning the nurse sent me home to get some sleep and the doctor told me to come back at 3PM to take her home.

It was a great day!!

Micayla was 2 ½ months old. She weighed 7 pounds 4 oz. She was tiny and she still is.

The last week of March we went to the adoption agency to meet with Susan. We had decided that since she didn’t really get to hold her and tell her goodbye nor place her in ours arms we wanted her to be able to have that opportunity. It was a great experience for us all.

In June 2003 we were able to finalize her adoption and take her to the temple to be sealed to us. These were beautiful experiences etched in our minds forever.

Micayla’s health has been great. She did have to have another open heart surgery in May 2005. Amazingly enough she was home from the hospital in just 2 days.

We are blessed to still be in contact with Susan. We exchange letters and pictures with her through LDS Family Services each year on Micayla’s birthday. We are so grateful for Susan and the wonderful gift that she delivered to us.

While Caleb’s adoption was not nearly as dramatic it was still a great story.

To be continued......................

How I got my Wii.......

Yesterday I bought a Wii. At first when they came out I was sure that I would NEVER get one. I didn't want one. Then after a few months of hearing about them I started to change my mind. I think they are a little better than other gaming systems in that with the Wii you actually get up and moving. Alright so I decided that I wanted one....but they are $250.... I put it on my someday list....

Through a post I found on Pinching Your Pennies I found out how I "might" be able to get one from almost free. I went to www.yourfreewii.net and I CAREFULLY followed the instructions to the T. I did the required offers on 3/28/08 (then it was 2 - now it is 3) I paid a total of $14.95 for the offers that I did. I canceled them as soon as I could. I waited my time. Made a follow-up phone call to them (on day 51 to have them change my status to approved), sent in my fraud information - ID, W-9, and Notarized Affidavit. And then YESTERDAY - yes about 3 months after I did the offers -- I got a check for $250. Off to GameStop I went and I bought my Wii.

It was a bit of a gamble -- but in the end it paid off!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Have you joined?

There is another GREAT contest this week at The Secret Is In the Sauce!!! Have you joined this group of great women (some men)? Heather and Tiffany ROCK! They are just a couple of bloggers like you and me that want to share our stories, triumphs and sorrows!!! Go be a "Comment Junkie" like me --- tell them I sent you!!!!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

No "Frugal Tip Friday" this week!




Have a happy and safe 4th of July!! Remember to properly extinguish all used fireworks - do not put them in the trash until they have soaked in water"

God Bless America!!!

Adoption Story --- Part 9

In case you missed anything:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8

Sorry for the delay - this is very emotional for me.
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The infant unit was supposed to be so freeing after spending time in the NICU and PICU – but it was terrifying to me. First of all the roommate that we had had just been realized from isolation because she ahs whooping cough – yes that is right, although they tried to convince me that she was not longer contagious. Another worry of mine was that in both previous units we had a nurse right by the bed at all times! In the infant unit the nurses were not there very often. Because of the surgery and being intubated Micayla had no voice – so when she cried there was no sound – I was afraid to leave her side.

On the morning of the 18th they took out her feeding tube. Every time we fed her she would throw up. This was not just cute little baby spit up it was projectile baby formula across the room. After she would throw up she was always in distress. At first they said that she was just throwing up because eating was new to her – that seemed rational enough. But it wasn’t getting any better. They took her for x-rays and couldn’t see anything wrong.

By the time evening came – I was exhausted and I went out to the trailer to sleep for a few hours. When I came back inside in the morning (19th) they told me that she had had a bad night. She had pulled out her PIC line IV – these are pretty big strong IV’s that last a long time so that they don’t have to keep poking them. They really aren’t that easy to remove – have you met my daughter? They decided that they needed to put another one in – this time it was done surgically and stitched in so she couldn’t take it out. She also had a fever that day and she was still throwing up. After more tests and x-rays they decided that she had something wrong in her intestines that they needed to keep an eye on. They stopped feeding her with a bottle and put the tube back in.

Late that afternoon Matt came in and my dad also came in. Things started going down hill really fast. Micayla was clearly in distress. Her breathing was such that with every breath her chest was retracting. Her oxygen levels were dropping. Her color was really bad!! The cardio thoracic nurse practitioner was there, doctors and nurses things were CRAZY! The general surgery resident came in and told us that they thought her colon had perforated and that she was septic. She needed emergency surgery. Several times we heard from different people in the room “We are going to lose her.” I have never been so scared in my life!! The good Mormon girl in me knew that she needed a priesthood blessing. The nurse practitioner said that she could have a blessing but that it had to be quick and that they couldn’t get in the way. My dad and Matt snuck their hands in and Matt gave her what I imagine to be a beautiful blessing – I was crying so hard and in the arms of the social worker. I know that the Lord hears our prayers! Almost immediately after Matt said “Amen” the spirit in the room changed. Micayla calmed down her breathing improved and even the doctors and nurses calmed down. She was rushed to surgery.

Matt parents came and my mom was on her way home from her office in St. George. My dad had called her when things we found out she needed surgery – she drove from St. George to Salt Lake in 3 hours. We waited for what seemed like forever in the waiting room. I don’t really know how long that surgery took – at least 2 hours.

Once again Primary Children’s saved her life.

Dr. Downey came in and told us that she was heading back to the NICU and that he had removed almost a 1/3 of her intestine. Now the remaining intestines had to rest. He gave her an ileostomy which is basically a colostomy - they brought part of her intestine (about 1 inch) outside of her body. He said that in a few months they would be able to go and reattach everything. I really had no idea what he was talking about – but I soon learned that the ileostomy is where her poop would now come out. There was a plastic bag attached to her that would catch the poop.

We waited about an hour before they would let us see her in the NICU. It was very late. We kissed her goodnight and then Matt took me home – not the trailer – home. Other than leaving to go to a few Christmas Parties I really hadn't left the hospital since December 9th.

To be continued......................................................

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Adoption Story --- Part 8

In case you missed anything:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
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Monday morning we had to be at the hospital by 7:00 am. We were told that they would take her to surgery whether we were there or not. We barely made it. It was one of those terrible Utah Inversion Fogs!! We could barely see 2 car lengths ahead of us.

We got to the NICU just as they were getting ready to take her for the walk to the O.R. We accompanied her as far as they would allow us to go. When they took her I fell apart. I could not and still cannot fathom how they can do open heart surgery on a heart the size of a walnut.

We went to the waiting room where we were assured that they would keep us posted. The surgical nurse practitioner came out several times to update us. At about 1:30 Dr. Hawkins came through the door. He sat down by us and told us that everything went great. He handed me a small square of fabric with a hold cut out of the middle. The missing piece is now a patch in her heart. He told us that they needed about an hour to get her stabilized in her new home – the PICU (Pediatric Intensive Care).

After many phone calls and lunch we went to see sweet Micayla. She was full of more wires and tubes than before. We counted 15 IV drug pumps. She was swollen. It was hard to see her that swollen. It seemed like she had 10 doctors and nurses that day, everyone looking out for her best interest. That night we learned that she does not have a thymus. This is the gland that produces T-cells which are the cells that help fight off illness - this is why we have to work extra hard to keep her away from sick people.

Through that day and the next several it was watch and wait. I spent between 12-18 hours a day right next to Micayla. We had friends and family come to visit. The day after her surgery was Utah Jazz day. John Stockton and his son came and talked to me and took a picture with Micayla. Since it was the holiday season Micayla was blessed to receive many gifts, blankets and afghans from people that we didn’t even know.

On December 15th , the night before my birthday, I got a great gift. I got to hold Micayla for the first time since the night before surgery. I was so excited! She was breathing on her own, with just the oxygen tube in her nose. The gift that Matt and I wanted for Christmas was to be able to get Micayla well and out of the hospital before Christmas.

On December 17th she was moved out of the ICU and into the “Infant Unit” this was supposed to be the stop before we were able to take her home. She pretty much just needed to eat. We were prepared that she might be going home with oxygen and medications.

To be continued.........

Sweet Shredded Pork

This is a super quick recipe!!! It tastes almost like the Cafe Rio type sweet pork. You can serve it on buns, tortillas or over rice.

Put a pork roast in your crock pot. Dump a couple cups of salsa, 1 can of coke (not diet) and 1 cup of brown sugar. Cook on low 8-10 hours -- shred with forks in crockpot just before serving!!

This is a favorite at our house!! I do this about once a week!!!

Crazy Coupon Freak, Part 4

This is a quick post - since I have a sickie at my house right now. My tip today really doesn' have coupons in it--- but ---- When you go to the grocery store don't forget to stop by the "Reduced for quick sale" meats. They are perfectly fine to buy. They are close to the sell by date so you need to either take it home and cook it or freeze it. Yesterday I bought a 15 lb pork roast for $9.00. I had the butcher cut it into 3 roasts. Yummy!!! Stay tuned for a great shredded pork recipe.....