Saturday, November 2, 2013

Packing list

As the holiday's quickly approach and I start to plan and pack for our upcoming travels I thought it would be nice to post a quick and easy way I've cut my packing problems down.

Shortly after having Garrison I was packing our bags as we were heading out to visit family. I was getting so frustrated because I was trying to juggle the demands of a newborn while trying to go over our daily routines so I wouldn't forget to pack something.  In my frustration, I came up with a system that I've now used for years and it's been such a lifesaver.

I created a list with each of my children's names on top.  Then, depending on the season I'm packing for, I list everything they'll need in their suitcases- from underwear and shirts to snow pants and swimming trunks.  I then printed it off, stored it in a sheet protector and filed it away where I'll be able to find it easily the next time I need to pack.

The nice thing about storing it in a sheet protector is that I can use a dry erase marker to cross off the items as I put them into the suitcase.  When the list has been completed I simply wipe it off and put it away.  Life saver!  I'm telling you.

I've posted pictures of my lists below.  I've created two different ones for my family- a winter one and summer one.  Yours may be different.  Maybe you family camps a lot or travels overseas and could use a list that has spots for passports or sleeping bags.  The nice thing about the list is you can create it to fit your families traveling needs.

I hope this helps cut down the time and stress of packing.  Safe travels!

*click on picture to take a closer look

* side note- my lists need to updated badly so ignore the name baby.  At the time I created these we hadn't picked a name for our son and I knew we'd be traveling shortly after his birth (like 3 days actually.)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Happy Birthday, Cade

Happy 1st Birthday, Cade!

We've been blessed by this little guy.

His smile is contagious.

His hugs are irresistible.

His presence is a delight.

He's a laid-back, go-with-the-flow kid who can eat with a fork, sleep through the night, drink from a sippy cup, wave and say "hi" and "bye," walk, climb and lots of other fun things.

But more importantly...

He is ours.

He is loved!

He is one!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Happy Birthday, Josiah

Happy 4th Birthday, Josiah!

Josiah wanted a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles party this year.  So last night we had some of our family over to celebrate.  (We also kind of sort of celebrated Cade's birthday too.  Who turns 1 next Tuesday.  He got to open presents.  His cake and decorations will come next week.)

My attempt at making TMNT balloons.

"The Ooze"
 aka. lemon lime kool-aid 

I decided to make Josiah's cake this year.  It took me 3 hours!!!
Raphael came out pink and not red- Josiah, thankfully, didn't care.

 "Ok!  Everyone look at me now."  
Yep, that's what he said.

 What the table looked like when he came down for breakfast this morning.

Josiah also got to tag along with Garrison and his class as they went to the Superior Fire Station this morning.  (I was a chaperon and driver.)  He had a lot of fun (all the kids did.)  What a way to start out your birthday!
*click on the picture and look at the way Garrison is standing.  I think it's so cute.

Monday, September 16, 2013

My little helper

Josiah loves helping me cook.  Yesterday when he came in to the kitchen and saw that I was using a rolling pin he ran to get a chair.  We were making little pizza crusts for Garrisons school lunches.

Garrison goes to school everyday, but his school only offers hot lunch two days a week.  So that leaves me 3 days of racking my brain trying to come up with cold lunch ideas.  The other day, I came upon this website through pinterest and found a recipe for making pizza lunchables.  (I already make regular ham, cheese and cracker lunchables so I was super excited to find this.)  Talk about a hit with my boys.  They had to try them for supper last night and Josiah is wanting them for lunch again today.  I think I'll be making more of these soon.  Next time I'm going to double or triple what I just made so that I can actually freeze some and save them for future lunches.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A few treasures

I was cleaning out a cupboard and found these little treasures of Thomas and myself as kids.  Don't they look like 3 other little cuties in our lives?!



Thursday, September 5, 2013


Garrison started kindergarten on Tuesday.  I thought it would fun to "interview" him beforehand to ask him about his favorite things.  I hope to keep this up every year, along with a picture of him holding a sign of the grade he is entering.

Garrison's Favorite:
Food- Chicken Alfredo
Color(s)- Yellow, red, blue and black
Animal- Duck
TV show- Curious George
Movie- Cars
Restaurant- McDonald's
Book- Batman
Bible Story- Jonah and the whale
Best Friend- Josh
What do you want to be when you grow up- Firefighter

Garrison 5 1/2 years old
Josiah turning 4 in 3 weeks
Cade 11 months
Aza 8 years old

Josiah was feeling a little left out so I "interviewed" him as well.

Josiah's Favorite:
Food- Chocolate milk and apples
Color- Green
Animal- Giraffe
TV show- Curious George
Movie- Batman (cartoon movie)
Restaurant- Burger King
Book- Magic School Bus books
Bible Story- Daniel and the lions den
What do you want to be when you grow up- Firefighter and race car driver

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Cade Ryan

Wow!  Where has the past month gone?  My little Cade Ryan is 1 month old today.  I thought before I forget all the details I better document Cade's birth story.

This little man decided to enter the world 9 days after his due date.  I think he would have stayed a lot longer had I not been induced.

I had an ultrasound and doctor appointment the Friday before his birth to check to make sure he had enough amniotic fluid.  We found out that Cade had way more fluid than he was supposed to, but the doctor wasn't concerned at all.  My doctor and I talked about being induced if I didn't go into labor over the weekend.  I was still sitting at 2 cm and 50% effaced.  My doctor wanted me to come in on Wednesday, October 3, but I was really hoping for Monday.  So she called down to the birthing center to see what worked for them.  They ended up being booked for Tuesday and Wednesday so the birthing center set up a time for me to come in on Monday morning at 5:30 am.

The weekend came and went with no baby.  So Sunday night we dropped off Garrison and Josiah with some people from our church and heading home to prepare to wake up at 4 am to get ready for our newest addition.

Monday morning Thomas and I left at 5 am.  It was such a weird feeling to be heading to the hospital knowing we were going to have a baby, but not being in labor.  I felt guilty that I was sort of choosing when my baby was going to be born.  I felt like I should have waited and let him come on his own.  Ultimately, I knew that God was in control even with an induction.

We got up to the birthing center and got all settled in to our nice big luxury suite with a private bathroom.  THANK YOU!  After asking me a million questions I was finally hooked up to all the machines.  I needed to have some fluid into my system before they could start the pitocin.

I was actually really scared to get the pitocin.  Many people had told me not to be induced and my mom (who had visited the weekend before I went in to have Cade) told me about her experience with pitocin.  She said it was extremely painful as soon as it started and the contractions were one on top the other with no breaks in between.  I did not want that experience at all.

At about 6:30 am they started the pitocin and I felt no contractions for the first 2 1/2 hours.  My nurse was wonderful.   She told me how they start the pitocin out light and gradually up the dosage as my body needed.  She came into my room and adjusted the dosage 4 times before I started to feeling anything.  I also needed to lay on my left side the whole time because Cade was not reacting good to any other position.  My nurse tried having me lay on my back and right side, but each time I did Cade would stop progressing.

At 9 o'clock my doctor came in and broke my water.  I was really hoping (as well as Thomas and my nurse) that I would get an epidural before they broke my water, but my doctor wanted to get things rolling.  I was 4 cm when she broke my water.

Then my contractions really started picking up, but the nice thing was I was able to stay ahead of them and concentrate when the contraction came.  I just held Thomas' hand and focused.

At 10:45 the epidural man came in with the wonderful drug.  As he was giving me the instructions on what he was going to do he says, "You know they tell me you're in labor, but I can't tell with how wonderful you're doing."  It's so nice to hear that you're doing good from people who see this everyday.  I had quite a few contractions during the procedure of getting the epidural and since you can't move at all all I could do was squeeze my fingers.  Thomas said he looked down at me (he was standing in front of me holding my shoulders because I had to lean so far forward they didn't want me falling over) and noticed that my fingers were white from squeezing them so hard.

At 11:45 the resident came in and checked me.  I was at a 7.  At 12:10 my doctor came in and checked me and said, "you're ready."  My nurse got everything ready and then told me to push a few times as he was still a little high up.  I pushed once and then started to push again when she told me to stop because he was out a little.

My doctor, the resident and all the nurses came in and with one push, a huge breath and another push Cade Ryan was born at 12:36 pm weighing in at 8 lbs. 15.6 oz and 21.2 inches long.  My doctor was really glad that she was finally able to deliver one of our babies.  She wasn't on call when Garrison was born.  With Josiah she missed his birth by 20 minutes as she was at a different clinic and was trying to come as fast as she could.  My doctor actually had a family photo session to go to at 1, but stuck around to deliver Cade.

While the doctor was cleaning up Cade she mentioned how heavy he felt and she guessed he was 9 lbs.  When he finally got on the scale and was only .4 oz away from 9 lbs. she said we should tell everyone he was 9 lbs because he was so close anyway.  :)  

Garrison and Josiah LOVE their little brother.   Garrison is always hugging and kissing him and telling us how much he loves Cade.  We are so blessed to have 3 little boys.  I told Thomas the other day that I could totally have another one... maybe it'll be a girl.  That would end our family nicely.  But for now we are LOVING Cade and our wonderful family of 5.