Monday, June 30, 2008

Pink Would Be Good

I have been thinking about our future baby and I've decided it needs to be a girl. For medical reasons only of course.

Our little Graham was sitting at the bar the other day eating his lunch. He asked if he could have peas. I opened up a can and gave him a few spoon fulls. The phone rang and then the next thing I knew Eli said Graham was bleeding. Apparently I didn't give him enough peas and he went into the can for some more. He almost removed the pad off his middle finger. It was bleeding so bad blood was dripping on the floor.

Yesterday he was playing upstairs and took his band aid off and then there was blood all over the white toy chest.

Today while napping he again removed his band aid and bled so much on his bedding that Tanner thought he threw up!

Needless to say he'll be heading into the pediatrician tomorrow, but in the meantime I've been worried about a blood disorder that runs in our family. It's a version of hemophilia called Von Willebrands. My grandfather and my brother both have it and it runs from the mother to her sons. My mom is obviously a carrier since my brother has it and so far none of my boys have shown symptoms. They have a 1 in 4 chance of having it.

I think we had him tested as an infant but we will revisit that test I'm sure. It's just bizarre how much that little wound has bled and it's not bad enough to need stitches. For now I bought some medical tape and we've permanently affixed a band aid to his finger.

Poor little guy. See with a girl there's no fear of this possibly life threatening illness and we don't have to deal with circumcision. It's a win win win :)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Sweet Boys


It's funny how impatient I become when I get my mind set on something. I am so eager to find out who this little person is God is going to bring to us.

I am doing the best I can to get ready for the pregnancy as well as the baby. I am starting the Core Plan for Weight Watcher's today. It's a very healthy way of eating without limiting quantity. It will help me maintain my weight during the pregnancy making it easier on my hip and easier on the post pregnancy weight loss.

The boys will start their school year on Monday. The idea is that if and when we get pregnant the boys will have completed their year when he/she gets here and we will have a couple months to get used to the new addition before the next school year. Brennan will be in 2nd, Tanner 1st, and Elijah kindergarten. We just got all our books in this last week and I am eager to get started.

It's a little intimidating thinking of schooling 3 kids but hey, that's just the beginning. Eventually I'll be doing 5!

I've also been taking all my vitamins. I'm really bad about taking prenatals during my pregnancies. A lot of it was just not being a good pill taker and now with my thyroid disease I have to take meds daily and that helps quite a bit. My OBGYN suggested I start the prenatal vitamin as well as taking a folic acid supplement daily. I've been on both now for a little over a month.

It's been fun picking up maternity clothes here and there. I was able to find several pieces at the Goodwill. Someone my size must have just donated a bunch because I struck gold. There were a lot of Gap and Mimi maternity pieces all for $2-$3 a piece. Then at Target I picked up 2 pairs of jeans for $6 a pair. It also helps that I LOVE knit (soft) clothing and a lot of it will fit with a big ol' belly.

Now, if we were just pregnant :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Said Blankie

This is the blankie Christi and I found at the Bashor sales. It's a bright yellow and light yellow stripe on one side while the other side has an adorable embroidered caterpillar turning into a beautiful butterfly over the course of a week. This particular blanket is carter's.

The neat thing about the Carter's brand is that you know that there are matching clothing out there somewhere! When Eli was little I had the blue and yellow ducky clothing and matching blanket. When Graham was little I had the brave lion clothing and matching blanket. Their stuff is just adorable. I've always coveted the bright deep pink and light pink with butterflies and flowers set. Who knows!!


Sunday, June 22, 2008

Mmmm Blankies

Now that we know for sure we are going to try for another bambino I have started the search. After Graham we (meaning Jared) was so sure we were done that I had a garage sale and sold a lot of our baby clothing and odds and ends.

My sweet friend Michelle said she thought another baby might be in our future when I was organizing the sale last year and sobbed while sorting the baby things.

My favorite baby item in the world is the Carters/Baby Gap/Children's Place knit blankets. They are usually adorned with precious little characters or pictures on one side while having a solid color on the other. If you really feel them they are 2 layers and bound with a matching fabric.

They retail for as much as $20 each but I search garage sales. I found one last weekend and my mom called and said she'd picked up 3 of them!!! They are absolutely perfect for nursing, snuggling, covering a carrier, sleeping, or any thing else you can think of. They are the perfect size, perfect thickness, perfect softness and I LOVE them :)

If you see any while out and about for less than $5 I will repay you! Normally at garage sales I find them for $3 or less. I'll take all colors and patterns at this point. If we end up with the wrong gender they can easily be passed on.

Since this may very well be our last (how many times have I said that?) I may just hold on to all of them and make a quilt out of them for my grand babies.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

There's No Place Like Home!

We arrived home yesterday evening. It is such a blessing to be in my house, with all my family and with the internet (I'm only kinda kidding).

Camp was good but very hard. The brokenness this week was overwhelming. We were dealing with mainly 12-14 year olds and some of their lives read like a horror story. It seems to be worse with each year and this week was a severe reality check. These kids are a good sampling of what life is for this age group. It's shocking and gives a feeling of desperation and urgency to save the youth of this nation. They are being abused, abandoned, used, forgotten, belittled, and that's just what they shared after a couple days.

The constant discipline issues was a little new to Jared. We had kids doing things that I wouldn't have ever even thought about and I was pretty creative :)

As a whole it was a good week and the missions time with Nathan S. was priceless and affected all of us including staff. God has really blessed him and his ministry. If your church is looking for a VBS or a revival or your camp needs a speaker please contact him. Your lives will be changed. He is on the front lines making a difference in children's lives.

Nathan will be at Deeper Life camp in July so if you have a JR/SR high student send them!!

We are thankful to be home and this week was a good distraction from all the chaos and emotions of last weekend. God was good and a lot of the physical pain subsided by Wednesday. I was able to focus on my older boys, the campers, and also bonded with some buddies who became great friends. God is good and His timing is perfect.

Saturday, June 14, 2008


I am in so much pain and discomfort. We are in the process of leaving for camp tomorrow and I am having the most intense lower back pain and cramping. I've taken tylenol to try and get some peace but honestly it doesn't seem to touch it.

It's becoming harder and harder not to think about all the emotions that go along with this when the pain is a constant reminder. I was doing really good this morning and just this evening around 5 or 6 it became increasingly miserable.

We leave for camp tomorrow at 2 pm and I am just desperately praying the worst of this will pass by then so I can focus on the campers and our ministry.

My little Graham will be spending the week with Grandma Anita and I'm struggling quite a bit with the notion of being without my baby. Obviously it would be difficult regardless but under the circumstances I feel desperate for his smile, charm and kisses. I know he will be fine and I won't have to worry about him wandering into the wilderness (that little boy knows no boundaries).

We are hoping for a great week of spiritual renewal and rest. I really appreciate all your sweet words of encouragement. We will be back on Friday. God Bless and have a good week.

Friday, June 13, 2008

An answer

Whatever has been happening is ending. I'm thankful for an answer, but obviously saddened by the situation.

I'm focused on the good and now that this starts a new beginning and a new chance for our little peanut to join our family eventually.

While I was on the way to the Dr. for my labs I just really felt the Lord was telling me, "no matter what you will be okay. Just trust in Me and it will be okay."

The song I posted earlier still rings true, "I will have heartaches but I will not be moved."

Through my tears I still Praise the Lord. He is Good.

Finally Gave In

I called the doctor and they asked me to come in for more lab. I went yesterday and received the results this afternoon.

My HCG levels are lower now than they were 10 days ago. The nurses assumption is they caught them on their way down and we are in the process of a miscarriage. The only problem is I have zero cramping or bleeding. I explained that my symptoms have not gone away so she decided to talk to my Doctor.

She called back and they offered to do more labs in a week if I don't start my cycle on my own (I am now 6 days late). She also said I could do another home test this weekend just to see. The only other thing I can do is take a medication to force my cycle and I think I'd rather just wait it out. The truth is we don't know for sure what is going on.

We still plan on a 5th baby and believe that's what is right and good for our family. I am really eager for this, whatever it is, to come to a close so we can work toward our future little bundle. I would greatly appreciate your prayers for Jared and I as we work through all the emotions of this uncertainty.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Been Thinking...

My friend Jenny was talking to me about my current stage of limbo and asked if I'd ever had anything like this with my first 4. My first reaction was, "no, never!"

Actually now that I've thought about it this is almost exactly what I went through with Graham. I've been teased by several that my 4th was such a surprise (I found out I was pregnant at about 11 weeks). By 4 I should know right! Well I did suspect I was pregnant and did several pregnancy tests for the first 2 weeks past my cycle and never got a positive.

It was at that point I decided something else MUST be wrong. I was super hormonal and my hip was hurting. Even though I was staying the same weight my waist was expanding. Since I have a thyroid disease I immediately blame weird things on it.

After I was a full month late I made an appointment with my endocrinologist. I was losing hair and losing my mind. He immediately assumed I was pregnant which infuriated me. I actually even had a sono in earlier weeks to confirm I wasn't pregnant (apparently it was too early to see at that point).

I had already come to grips with the fact that I wasn't and his shear suggestion angered me. I was sure something more was wrong I didn't want to be dismissed as someone who just miscalculated her cycle or someone who was hormonal. I fought with him and was downright hateful.

I went to the lab for the urine test and had to take my 3 older boys into the bathroom with me verses leaving them to wander in the tiny lab. Tanner immediately asked why I was peeing in a cup. I very sternly said, "that stupid doctor thinks there's a baby in my belly." (Mother of year award right there!!)

Well, the doctor wasn't so stupid after all. For some reason my body just didn't produce enough HCG to register until I was more than 2 weeks late. Graham was born to us just 6 months later.

Now that I've had 1 positive test and every possible symptom I've ever experienced I'm settling into the fact that we're pregnant and now being 3 or 4 days late I'm not going to test anymore until next week sometime. I've been crazy busy this week and haven't taken the time to call the Doc so I'm going to break down and call him in the morning.

I'm realizing that I'm letting fear of rejection or loss keep me from peace and joy. It would be a blessing to just know for sure, either way.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Updated Confusion

As I wrote in my earlier post entitled "Confusion" there hasn't been much clarity in this month's quest for babydom. I actually had a positive pregnancy test a few days ago. Needless to say I was thrilled and couldn't sleep that night. I decided that since the line was faint I would retest in a couple days for extra insurance. That test was negative! No joke. It was a different brand and each brand reads different levels of HCG so it could be explained I guess.

I was actually due to start my cycle on Sat or Sun and still haven't obviously or the confusion would be over. I still feel pregnant. I have a lot of symptoms but the main one is my hip pain. I have sacroiliitus and it only causes me issues when I'm pregnant. I have been struggling for the last few days. Saturday was bad enough that I couldn't sit without discomfort.

I could list for days all the little twinges and pulls, swellings and soreness, but the problem is the stinking tests! I've read all kinds of things on the internet. The main one being false positives are rare and false negatives are rampant. My main concern is the nurse had said when I had lab work that my progesterone was extremely low, too low to sustain a pregnancy. So what's going on? No cramping or bleeding just 1 positive test and a negative one.

My plan is to call the Doc and ask for more lab work, but honestly I'm gun shy. Part of me just wants to wait this out. A lot of people don't have positive tests until they're several days late. I had one maybe I just need to wait and there will be another in a few days...

Ugh, I covet your prayers. I honestly don't want to obsess about this. I have 4 beautiful babies that I am loving on every moment of every day. If I'm not pregnant, fine. We'll just try next month. If I'm losing this pregnancy, okay...I'll be okay. God is good and He will sustain me. If I'm going to have a healthy pregnancy can I just know already!!!

Maybe I will call the Dr. Hopefully he'll put me out of my misery.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

To Do:

I have a list of things that I would like to have accomplished before our next member joins our family. Most of them are underway and the attic space was actually finished last week by my sweet father in law.

-Have my wall oven installed and functioning. We will now have 2 ovens for large family gatherings and large baking days. I often have something baking in the oven and have to sit it out so I can bake a batch of rolls or cookies. I can't wait!

-Start the boys on their next year of school and have it complete before birthday! I am in the process of ordering all their consumable books and we plan to start when we get home from camp here in the end of June. Brennan is in 2nd, Tanner 1st, and we're going to start Eli in kindergarten. WHOO! We've really been debating about Eli and he seems most like Brennan and super eager to read and write. I feel like it would really benefit him to encourage his desires to learn verses holding him off for a year.

-Rough out our attic space above the living room for easy storage and access to all the kids clothes etc.

-Paint and organize the nursery according to the sex of the baby. I'm planning on polka-dots. If it's a boy: blue, khaki, and green spots; a girl: pink, khaki, and lavender spots will adorn the nursery.

-Start Ramsey and stick to it religiously so we can afford peanut. Work fervently to pay off debt so an addition to the upstairs is possible. Thankfully the stimulus check has afforded us to replace a few things at home and get caught up on some bills. We are well on our way to freedom and hopefully a bathroom upstairs for 5 little (soon to be big) kiddos.

-Potty train Graham. He will be 3 or older when a baby joins our brood and I would really like to only be buying diapers for one. The sooner the better since we already have them budgeted I will just buy those adorable teeny tiny ones instead.

-Switch Graham to big boy bed. He has a bunk in the main bedroom where the other 3 currently reside. We've tried one night in the bunk and he stayed put but his desire to be a clown won over. Hours into the night he was still giggling and making his brothers roll hysterically in their beds. Poor guy, he's only 2 and already so funny. He's not mature enough to even begin to understand when it's okay and when it's bedtime!

I'm sure there will be more but this alone will take 9 mos to accomplish. It was my plan to paint our garage this fall as well but if we are expecting by then I may have to beg some church/family members for some help. I'm usually the painter in the family. We have a beautiful home and this worn out garage with peeling paint begging for attention. It just doesn't fit and I think it will improve the appeal of the entire property to just add some fresh paint!

I need to stop, I just keep coming up with things. Is it possible to nest before you even know if you're pregnant?! :0P

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


Well I'm not real sure what's happening :) I have been super in tune with ever little ache and pain. I have been operating on the assumption that I am already pregnant (only by about 12 days or so). It may sound silly but this being my 7th pregnancy with 4 little boys and 2 miscarriages I really feel like I should know what it feels like. I've taken several tests and yesterday went to the Doctor for lab work.

So far everything has come back negative and I really thought that the lab test would vindicate me and I would be able to announce to the world, "it worked! already!" The problem is my blood test came back as having a low level of HCG and a very low level of progesterone. Basically it's one of several things:

1) I'm pregnant and it's too early to tell (totally possible since my cycle should start June 10)

2) I'm pregnant and my progesterone was too low to sustain it therefore leading to miscarriage in a matter of days

3) Not pregnant at all, better luck next time.

To be real honest I would have staked my life on the fact that I was/am. I cried for a minute mainly because of the release of emotion leading up to the call. Now I'm good. It's hard to mourn when you don't even know if there's anything to mourn. I didn't anticipate getting pregnant this month so it would have been a great surprise. We still feel excited and called to this and I'm happy with #3, better luck next time.

I am learning however to keep things to myself. It was completely irrational to jump the gun and start talking about it. I am hoping that all of my "feelings" are accurate and we actually are, but honestly we're fertile and if we're in His will it will happen in His time. Amen?! I apologize for all the hooplah apparently I'm more excited for this than I even thought.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Encouraging Words

I have to admit that I am already on the defensive.

-My poor brother in law almost had his head bitten off by a simple statement he made at a ball game. We were in the process of the leaving the T-Bones game and rounding up our boys when he simply said,"I know what we need! We need another kid!" It was a little hairy getting the boys and all our stuff ready to head out for a long walk back to the car at 9pm and I really felt like we were all doing really well. I immediately assumed this comment was an affront to our plans to expanding our family and left upset and bitter. After calming a bit I decided to talk to him the next morning to find out this was something he teased his wife when everything was at it's craziest to be funny. He then went on to tell me how much he admired Jared and I and if anyone could do it we could. What a precious thing to say.

-The other night a friend of ours came over that I haven't seen in quite a while. He just sat down with me and said, "So, what's been going on with you?" You all know that's dangerous :) I started talking about our plans and how we felt God had called us to this place. He sat and earnestly listened with a precious smile on his face. He went on to say how happy he was for us and wanted to know if we thought about more after #5. What!! More?? You don't think we're flat crazy for wanting to have 5? I couldn't have been more touched by his sincerity and trust that we were doing the right thing and that we would be successful.

-Jared has expressed our desires with the Elders as a whole during a meeting and they were supportive and loving. Jared said that during prayer they even prayed for our new baby and for me.

I am constantly met with love and joy at the idea of adding another Altic to our clan. I know that there will be those who don't understand but I am so thankful that right now we are being showered in love and understanding. It is such an encouragement. I believe that God speaks to us through His people and right now He's telling us we're in His will and He's soo excited.