Monday, January 25, 2010

Music Monday--Early Winter

Diane at Good Mourning Glory is hosting a giveaway to commemorate her 1 yr anniversary of hosting Musical Monday....visit her for your chance to win!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The WINNER of the Bumkins Waterproof Apron is.....

Blogger Janet said...
I follow.
January 7, 2010 10:34 AM

Janet will have 48 hrs to respond to my e-mail or a new winner will be picked!

Sorry I've been MIA lately & took a little extra time getting this winner selected.  I'm hoping to get back in the swing of blogging this coming week.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Mason's Birth Story

It's been 20 years, but the details are still pretty clear in my head.

In January of 1990, we lived about 20 miles outside Modesto California.  January is a very foggy month, so my greatest fear was that it would be too foggy to make it to the hospital in time for the birth of our second child.  Our oldest was 29 months old.  He was convinced that he was getting a baby sister.  The baby sister was going to be named Alyssa in memory of Hubby's mother Alice who died from cancer in 1982.  I really wanted a girl, but I also wanted my son to have a brother.  My due date was January 15th, but since I was HUGE, I was really hoping the baby would decide to come early.

On January 10th, a friend invited Hubby and I to go out "dancing".  We were in our early 20's and although we didn't really dance much we did enjoy going out and watching other people dance.  We left little Marvin with my Mom for the evening and told her we would call her if anything happened.  Around 11pm, I started having some light contractions.  We were only a few miles from the hospital and it was definitely starting to get foggy.  We called my Mom and told her that we were going to go over to the hospital to be checked, we didn't want to drive all the way home in the fog and then have to turn around and drive back in again.

We got to the hospital a little after midnight and went up to labor and delivery.  The floor was totally empty and we could tell that the nurses were annoyed that we had decided to disturb their quiet night.  We ended up with a nurse who was heavily made up, wearing lots of perfume and had long acrylic nails.  I'm allergic to perfume, so I already knew it was going to be difficult working with her.  She told Hubby that I was still smiling way too much to REALLY be in labor.  They hooked me up to the machines and put me in bed and soon the contractions starting showing fairly strong on the monitor.  Our nurse decided she should check my cervix for dialation.  As she poked around with her long fingernails, I felt a distinct POP and then some fluid.....she had ruptured my water with her nails.  When I mentioned the POP, she denied that my water had broken, but a few minutes later she sent in a different nurse with a test strip to see if my water was "leaking" and of course it was.  The nurse with the long nails never came back in the room.

For the next several hours we sat around & dozed off & on.  The contractions were there, but they weren't overly intense.  If the nurse hadn't broken my water, we would have been sent home by this point.

Around 7 am, my OB arrived to check on me.  He wasn't impressed with my contractions and suggested finishing the job of breaking my water.  I agreed & he used a tool that looked like a giant crochet hook to scrape around inside of was 20 years ago, but still stands out as one of the more painful aspects.  The remaining amniotic fluid came rushing out and the contractions instantly got much stronger.  Since my water was broken, I couldn't leave the labor room, but as soon as the Dr left, I got up out of the bed and walked around the room.  For the next few hours they left us alone, so Hubby and I "danced" and paced the room.  My contractions were mostly in my back & as long as I kept moving they were manageable, until suddenly they weren't.  I was having intense pain in my lower back and nothing I did helped.  I decided that Hubby needed to rub my back, but the rubbing wasn't HARD enough, so I had him press with all his might into my lower back.  Under normal conditions this would have hurt, but it proved to be just what I needed to deal with the contractions.  Contractions were coming about every 2 to 3 minutes with only about 30 seconds break in between, so Hubby would press and rub as hard as he could during the peak of the contraction, then rest for a few seconds before the next contraction.  We did that for about an hour.

The next time the nurse came in to check me, she said it was time to get the Dr.  The Dr arrived at about 1130 and after checking me said it was time to push.  He made me lie on the bed, but allowed me to do whatever I wanted with my legs and feet.  With the next contraction I curled forward and PUSHED as hard as I could.  Pushing made the pain so much more bearable.  I had forgot about the ring of fire, but with my second push, I felt it and then felt my baby's head come out.  The Dr told me to STOP pushing.....that has to be one of the most difficult things to do once you have reached this stage of labor.  The cord was wrapped around the baby's neck.  The Dr wiggled the cord off the baby's neck, then told me to push one more time REALLY hard.  I gathered every ounce of strength I could & pushed with all my might.  The shoulders had been the worst with my first and once again, the shoulders were much more difficult than the head.  Out popped the baby!!!!

The Dr held him up and said "It's a boy!!"  I was excited, but I was also a bit frightened.  He was very bluish grey.  I felt myself about to panic when suddenly he started to cry very loudly and instantly turned a BRIGHT shade of red all over.  It was probably only about 5 seconds before he took his first breath and started screaming, but to me it was a mini eternity.  He was HUGE and had deep ridges on his forehead that we later learned were caused from him being born face up.  The face up presentation also caused the severe back labor.  Looking back, I think that if the nurse hadn't broke my water during my initial check, he probably wouldn't have been born for a few more days and by then he probably would have turned on his own to be facing the right way.

Mason was born at 1150 AM Pacific Time on Thursday January 11, 1990.  He weighed 8 lbs 13 oz and was 22 inches long.

Music Monday....It was 20 years ago today

that my son Mason was born!  Happy Birthday Mason!!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010


A friend sent this to me in e-mail. I absolutely LOVE it and wanted to share with all my friends, but I'm not a big fan of forwarding e-mails, so I thought I would share with everyone here! Please feel free to grab this for your blog or to forward by e-mail to your friends.

1.       Drink plenty of water.
2.       Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and  dinner like a beggar.
3.       Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.
4.       Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy.
5.       Make time to pray.
6.       Play more games.
7.       Read more books than you did in 2009.
8.       Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.
9.       Sleep for 7 hours.
10.    Take a 10-30 minutes walk daily. And while you walk, smile.
11.    Don't compare your life to others'. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
12.    Don't have negative thoughts or things you cannot control.  Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.
13.    Don't over do. Keep your limits.
14.    Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
15.    Don't waste your precious energy on gossip.
16..    Dream more while you are awake.
17.    Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
18.    Forget issues of the past. Don't remind your partner of his/her mistakes of the past. That will ruin your present happiness.
19.    Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Don't hate others.
20.   Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.
21.    No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
22.    Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn.  Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away -- like algebra class, but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.
23.    Smile and laugh more.
24.    You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
25.    Call your family often.
26.    Each day give something good to others.
27.    Forgive everyone for everything.
28.    Spend time with people over the age of 70 and under the age of 6.
29..    Try to make at least three people smile each day.
30.    What other people think of you is none of your business.
31..    Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.

32.    Do the right thing!
33.    Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
34.    GOD heals everything.
35.    However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
36.    No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
37.    The best is yet to come.
38.    When you awake alive in the morning, thank GOD for it.
39.    Your Inner most is always happy. So, be happy.
Last but not the least:
40.    Please Forward this to everyone you care about.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

SNOW Day!!!

Thursday morning, I had my teeth cleaned at the dentist. While I was there the radio was playing. In the 30 minutes, I heard at least 6 announcements about school closings for "winter weather". I don't always listen to the radio in the van, but on my way home I turned it on and was surprised to hear that my kids schools would be closing an hour early. At that moment there wasn't ANY snow on the ground, the flurries hadn't even started.

By 3:30, when Maggie's bus would normally come barreling down our street, this is what the road looked like.  It's not much snow, but there is a sheet of ice under it.

This is a picture of the light dusting on our yard.  For some reason with this storm, the snow was sticking to the road better than it was sticking in the yard.  It hasn't been above 30 in over a week, so I'm sure the ground under the grass is frozen SOLID

Our cars were also lightly covered, but the driveway was completely WHITE. I've had a container of rock salt sitting in the garage for a couple years and decided this year I would put it on the sidewalk from the house to the driveway to keep ice from forming...I'm really happy with how well it worked, now I wish I had thought to put some on the driveway too.

In the morning Hubby's car was completely covered in SNOW!!! Thankfully, it was his day off, so we didn't have to worry about driving and the school district had wisely called for a snow day.

This is what our street still looked like at noon on Friday.
The kids were excited to get all bundled up to play in the snow. Here they are holding some big chunks of ice they found.

Toffee had to go out to play in the snow too. He enjoyed eating it, but had to be held in place so I could get a picture of him.

Melanie had a blast playing in the snow...she wouldn't put down the chunk of ice the entire time she was outside.

Marissa looked so cute all bundled up I just had to get a full body shot....she played outside for about 40 minutes before deciding it was way too COLD. Personally I lasted less than 10 minutes.

Friday, January 8, 2010

My Adventure....sledding on the ice with my van

Late Thursday night I remember an errand that couldn't wait. I took a ride in our van on the ice covered roads. Our van does not have 4 wheel drive or snow tires; chains do not seem to exist in Tennessee. The road I took ends in a very steep hill that flows out onto a much bigger road. I was driving extremely slow (like less than 10 miles an hour), but when I got to the top of that hill, I felt the need to put my foot on the brake to keep from going down too fast. As soon as I put my foot on the brake the van began to slide. It spun around backward and then slid backward down the hill. I was completely unable to steer. I kept my foot on the brake the entire time.  When I reached the bottom of the hill the brakes were able to grab enough to bring me to a stop. I was very thankful that it was very late at night and there was absolutely nobody else on the big road I now found myself in the middle of. After that adventure, I realized that there was no way I would be able to get my van back UP that big hill.

I got my errand done. Then, took the long way around to get home. Along the way I saw a couple of young men walking which seemed really odd to me (it was after midnight by this time)a few minutes later I saw the tail end of a sports car sticking up from the ditch on the side of the road...I think those young men must have taken the curve too fast. As I got closer to home, I saw at least 6 more vehicles at odd angles along the sides of the icy road and a large pickup truck with it's front wheels in the ditch. At the time, I thought they had probably all skidded off the road and abandoned their cars, but this morning I learned that people who REALLY needed to get out to go to work on Friday were leaving their cars on the edge of the main road and walking back into their subdivisions. Our area has no snow or ice removal, so if you're stuck in your subdivision, you are simply stuck until the ice melts.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Things I LOVE Thursday...Bumkins Apron Review & Giveaway!! CLOSED

All 6 of my kids LOVE to cook. Recently I was given the opportunity to review Bumkins Waterproof Aprons. Bumkins is a wonderful company that has a full line of cloth diaper & baby related items, but I was not aware that they also had products for older children & even adults. The Waterproof Apron comes in 3 sizes, Junior (3-6 yrs), Child (6-12 yrs) & Adult (12+). They are made of a unique waterproof material that is PVC Phthalates FREE. The material is machine washable (a total MUST in my house), stain & odor resistant and adjustable to fit a large size range. There is also a BIG pocket on the bottom.

Normally when the kids make brownies, they make a huge mess all over themselves, but these aprons have such great coverage that even Melanie didn't get any chocolate anywhere but on her face.
We received a Junior apron which fit both Marissa & Melanie very well. It has a hook & loop closure at the neck to secure it without being a strangulation hazard and there is a tie closure at the waist. Because of the great shoulder coverage, we have also used this apron as an art smock.

We also received a Child apron. It fit 9 yr old Maggie very well, but was almost too small for 11.5 yr old Morgan. He is over 5 ft tall, when I buy one for him I'll be getting the Adult size. The Child apron has a toggle on the string closure at the neck and a string to be tied at the waist. The blue & brown paisley was a GREAT neutral pattern for Maggie & Morgan to share. The kids have worn them quite a few times & I'm very pleased with how easy they come clean. They have not stained or faded at all. The material feels similar to nylon, but without the scratchiness and dries very quickly. I LOVE that it is waterproof, but still has a cloth feel.

I LOVE these aprons so much that I will soon be buying 3 more...another Junior, so that Marissa & Melanie don't need to share & 2 Adults, 1 for Morgan & 1 for ME!

Bumkins has generously offered to give one of my readers an Apron of their choice!!! To enter this giveaway, go to Bumkins and look around, then come back & leave a comment telling which apron pattern you like the best. (This is mandatory & no other entries will count if you don't do this)

Extra Entries!!!
Sign up for the Bumkins Newsletter & leave me a comment (1 entry)
Tell me another Bumkins product that you would LOVE to try (1 entry)
Become a Bumkins Facebook Fan & leave a comment on their wall about this giveaway & leave me a comment (2 entries)
Follow my blog publicly & leave a comment (1 entry)
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Follow me on Twitter & leave a comment (1 entry)
Tweet about this giveaway up to 2X per day, leave a comment with your twitter status (up to 2 entries per day)
Grab my button & leave a comment telling me where I can find it (1 entry)

This giveaway will end in two weeks on Friday January 22 at 11:59 pm Eastern. A winner will be selected using The winner will have 48 hrs to contact me before a new winner is selected. If your e-mail is not attached to your profile, be sure to leave a valid e-mail address in every entry.

If you are reading this on Facebook, you must comment on my actual blog post to enter this giveaway.

Disclosure...I received 2 Waterproof Aprons to review for this post, no other compensation was received.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Saturday, January 2, 2010

I'm playing with my template

I've been frustrated with my 3 column template....I wanted a wider post box, but I also wanted more area to put buttons & widgets. I'm not positive about this one YET, but so far it seems like it will do a lot more than my previous template. The best part? It was FREE & I'm not having to make a bunch of modifications. The worst part? I've lost all my buttons & STUFF from the may take me a couple days, but I'll eventually get everything sorted & arranged again.

Feedback would be greatly appreciated!!!

It's THAT time again!!!

From a REALISTIC point of view I know there is no chance of ME winning this, but I have to admit that every year I get suckered in & enter every single day. This year, I'm not thrilled with the location, but the KITCHEN is fabulous & I've already figured out which rooms we would use as bedrooms for the entire family.

Friday, January 1, 2010

About Me

 Hubby and I were high school sweethearts marvin84grad and recently celebrated our 23rd wedding anniversary. We have SIX kids. Three Boys and Three Girls, in that order. Our Boys are 22, 20 and 12. Our Girls are 9, 4 and 3. Christmas107 Our oldest son and his wife have blessed us with our first Granddaughter, she is 4 months younger than our youngest daughter.
I enjoy the routine of participating in weekly carnivals. I am not creative in a material way, blogging is my creative outlet. I started this blog in September 2008 with the intention of it being a "family journal" but I quickly discovered all the other things that can be done with a blog. I became addicted to weekly memes, blog carnivals and the very alluring reviews and giveaways.