Scrunchface :)

Friday, November 19, 2010

A Birfday Gift :)

This weekend, we were invited to Lucy Overacker's first birthday, and I wanted to make her a gift. I was given some great suggestions via a facebook post. One suggestion from Katie Matteson led me to the Etsy website and I fell in love with the site. I saw an item for sale (lots, actually :) and thought: "I could make that." So, Lucy, I made you some Ribbon Rings or Fairy Rings or Dancing Ribbons or whatever you'd like to call them.

I found wooden rings and a few more flavors of ribbon at the craft store to supplement the ribbon I had at home. I cut lengths of about two feet. Then tied the ribbon on the rings (leaving the ends uneven lengths) and voila!

And they turned out so cute, I made some for Eva with some plastic link toys we had lying around. I think I'll like the links, so I can just slip it on my purse/diaper bag strap.  <oh, I found bells at the craft store too, and made them removable for Eva...>

Baby Food

Eva likes eating baby food. We started last month. Peaches, bananas, peas, sweet potatoes are her "favorites" but she'll eat anything. For now! 

belated Halloween

Or rather, "Harvest Festival" :)

Our ward had a chili cook-off/contest for a potluck festival. Jon is great in the kitchen, he has a knack for recipes. For our chili, he wanted to add little chunks of steak as well as ground beef. It was tasty. Our pot of chili got "the hottest chili"award. (I can't claim anything, I ran out of time and used store-bought seasoning :)

But for the spirit of Halloween, the children dressed up in costumes. I slacked, and didn't put together a family costume like I wanted, but Eva couldn't go costume-less, right?!? So Kiana and I picked out a little butterfly costume for her. Eva had a ball socializing. She is such a happy girl, and willingly sat with Bob and Lynn Taylor while Jon and I got to eat dinner without her curious little hands reaching for our dishes :)

Eva received "the smallest costume" award. 
Too cute. 

Friday, October 8, 2010

Sometimes you feel like a ...

Yesterday was weird. It started out well. Mom came by our house and brought lunch, Mmmm, Thanks Mom! -But then in the afternoon, it went downhill... It didn't end up being a terrible day, either.

It was just off. I was amiss. blah. you get the picture.

I did our routine... tried to fold laundry and put it away while keeping Eva entertained and happy, while winding down for bed. Jon could tell (obviously, I don't hide things well). It just felt nice to talk about the things that were bugging me. Then, as soon as I said them aloud, I realized how silly each of my issues were.

I just had one of those days, and I am glad I can be over it. Thankful it wasn't worse.

Thankful. That's what I am, what I choose to be: Thankful.

Another thing: I want to be more charitable. In Activity Girls on Tuesday, we listened and read along to Thomas S. Monson's talk "Charity Never Faileth." It is amazing. I highly recommend it.

And, if you're ever having an off day... Let me know and I'll be your listening ear :)

Monday, September 6, 2010

Good Day

Hi Web. Brenna here... These were a couple thoughts I had on Sunday...
I was just thinking how blessed we are, and thought I'd share.
We went to church, and heard some great lessons, even if they weren't the ones being taught.
We have the sweetest daughter. Eva is so happy and content, such a special presence, and a joy to be around. Her wonder, love of learning, and smile are contagious.

Our families are great. We are very blessed to have our immediate family close-by. Love them tons!
Just thought I'd share :)

Surprise Labor Day project...

Hi Web, Brenna here.
As we went exploring the home improvement store, Jon saw some great flooring on sale. He said he'd put the Oak-colored laminate in the living room of our rental unit (Collun and Sarah Ellis' house) in a few hours. I wasn't as optimistic, and didn't believe it would be that easy... But He proved me wrong!! It looks super good too!


Before  (icky seams at the foot of stairs):


After (seams gone :)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

What's in a name?

Hi Web, Brenna here.
I have a funny, playful husband :) he's also creative and spontaneous.

This is on our wedding day. May 27, 2006.

He comes up with some interesting nicknames for me, and I sorta love them... Well, maybe the fact that I have so many of them :) It's possible I have an identity crisis??? Not only does he call me some standard ones like "babe" and "wifey" but also the following:


... and more... I just can't remember right now...

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Eva's Arrival

Hi Web, Brenna here. Jon said no one reads long posts, so I broke this long post into two: Brenna's Pregnancy and Eva's Arrival

She was overdue... I was worried she'd gotten too big and wouldn't come out! I was also worried because I didn't want to have to be induced, because of all the related issues. My last appointment was on Tuesday the 11th. My doctor said we'd see what happened, but scheduled me for an induction on Monday the 17th.

On Wednesday, I woke to some contractions about 3 a.m. but they went away. Thursday, same thing.
At some point, I decided to take matters into my own hands, and got some evening primrose oil. I can't remember if I started taking it Wednesday or Thursday... But Friday the 14th, I woke at about 3 a.m. with some contractions again. And they kept coming.

I was ready to go to the hospital at 6 a.m., because the contractions were a few minutes apart, but when I called, the nurse said they needed to be a full minute duration while three to five minutes apart. So I had to wait it out... It feels like the worst period cramp you've ever had... and then they get worse :) I just tried to sleep between contractions. I was timing them on an app I had downloaded on my iPhone.

Jon went to work, and just let his boss know he'd have to leave at any time. He surprised me by coming home at 11 a.m. or so, he had taken the rest of the day off. We took a bath, he read to me, and tried to keep me as comfortable as possible. I couldn't eat. I threw up the cereal bar I had eaten, which is LAME, because the nurses won't let you eat real food while in labor. :(

At 3 p.m. it was time to go to the hospital, so Jon packed me and the bags in the car, and we left the house. We were taken to a room, and the nurse checked me. I was at 4 cm at about 4 o'clock. She said she'd come check me again in an hour, and if I hadn't progressed, they'd send me home. I told myself that was NOT going to happen. I figured a cm per hour, and I'd have a baby by 10 p.m. Then a little while later, she came back saying she'd spoken with my doctor, and he said to go ahead and officially admit me into the hospital, and he'd be by to check me himself at 6 p.m. Good man. He broke my water about that time...

I wanted to avoid an epidural, and the nurse said I was handling things pretty well, but I wanted relief from the pain. I decided to have her administer Stadol. She said it was supposed to make me "not care" about the pain. But it just made me feel drowsy, out of control, and did NOTHING for the pain. :( This was around 7 p.m., after it took three tries to get an IV in my left arm. Then I threw up the jello they had let me eat and the other nurse said "well, she's in active labor..." I was glad, because that meant I was closer to having this baby out...

Jon and I thought it might be good to try laboring in the tub they have, but they couldn't get a good read on the baby's heartbeat, so I never went in the tub.

Jon was a trooper :) Mom was there with me too, and that was nice. Sarah also came by, and they all took turns giving me washcloths and handed me drinks, etc... :) 

OH! -there was a medical student "on duty", and early on the nurse asked if we'd mind if he was involved in the birth. (I don't remember his name... it may have been Craig, so that's what I'll call him...) I was pretty sure I wouldn't care, and I'm all about hands-on learning, so we said that it would be fine. And I felt good that I was going to have a "textbook" birth :)

So at one point, Craig came in and asked something like, "So, how are things going?" to which I exhaustedly and druggedly replied, "Havin' a baby!"

You know how at the hospital, they have that pain scale of numbers one to ten? Well, later, Craig came in a second time, and asked something like, "So, how's your pain level?" to which I growled, "Are you kidding?!?!" It wasn't funny to me at the time, but Mom described how she and Jon were almost busting up laughing, and I chuckle now.

Things kept progressing, and I was where I was supposed to be every time they checked me. The most painful part was the back labor. But I tried to relax and let the contractions do what they were supposed to do, and get that baby out... Then it felt like I had to poo, and I knew it was getting close. The nurse checked, and said "Oh, yep, she's right there... Lemme go call your doctor." And I said, "You mean he's not HERE?!?!" 

Then the hardest part was NOT pushing until the doctor got there and was ready. Then it was almost glorious to push with the contractions. I pushed for a short while, the doctor asked if I wanted to touch her head but I just wanted her out! Her head came out and he wanted me to wait to push her body out until they sucked the gunk out of her mouth, but I couldn't help it - out she came!

They placed this hot little mess on my chest and were toweling her off. She was pretty quiet, just gazing around, and making little cries. It was the weirdest smell. (-That was the strongest sense at the time, because my glasses were MIA.) She was beautiful! 6 lbs, 5 oz. 14 May 2010, 11:39 p.m.

(this photo was after she was wrapped up better)

They had to stitch me up a little. I wanted to nurse right away. While we tried to get her to latch on, they were stitching and I said "Ow!" and the nurse said "Does it feel like a pinch?" and I said "No, it feels like a pain in my butt!" A few minutes later, I said "Ow!" again when the other nurse tipped the lamp and it landed on my toe.

They did the routine checks and things, and it was neat to hear the doctor describing things to Craig (the med student). 

We had some visitors! Mom was in the room, but Dad, Kiana, Annie Grossmann, and Mike (Annie's boyfriend) were all there in the waiting room. They got to love on her right away. I asked, "Can I eat now?" and Mom got me a parfait from the cafeteria. It was amazing. 

Happy Grandparents! 

Aunties Kiana and Annie

Daddy Jon

We had to get up and moving though, they needed the delivery room... But we had to wait until another room was cleaned and ready for us. But we finally got situated in our room and tried to get some rest. She stayed in the room with us that night. On Saturday, she was having trouble keeping her temperature up, so they wanted to keep her under the heat lamp, so Jon's parents weren't able to hold her right away. But later on we cuddled skin-to-skin and she did well after that. 

That night as the nurse took her vitals, Eva weighed 5 lbs, 10 oz. She had lost more than ten percent of her body weight. They recommended that we supplement her with some formula to help her gain a little bit. Sunday afternoon, she weighed 6 lbs, 2 oz and we were discharged :) By her one week checkup she was 6 lbs, 10 oz... That's our girl! 

Brenna's Pregnancy

Hi Web, Brenna here. Jon said no one reads long posts, so I broke this long post into two: Brenna's Pregnancy and Eva's Arrival.

We knew we wanted kids, and we felt "the time" was coming soon, and last summer I FINALLY graduated college with my Bachelors of Arts and Sciences with my minor in Communication.

Then a month came and went, without the arrival of my period. We were going to have a baby! A huge rush of mixed emotions followed. Especially since only a few weeks prior, dear loved ones just found out they had lost their baby. I still tear up as I write this.
When the pregnancy test showed positive, I remember Jon jokingly saying, "Take it back! We're not ready!" But ready or not...

It was a Saturday. First thing I did was send my brother an e-mail. He had left a couple months earlier to serve a two-year mission for our church. I was sad he wouldn't be here for the birth, but excited that I could still share news with him, even if he wouldn't get the e-mail for a few days. (Jon also sent his brother an e-mail, who was also serving in the mission field.)
Then I called Mom, Kiana and Dad. The plan was to keep it a "secret" until after the first trimester, since the risk of miscarriage decreases after that. But on Monday, while we were both at work, Jon sent me an e-mail saying he'd spilled the beans to coworkers. He was just so excited and overwhelmed :)

Originally I was due May 8, 2010. The timing was great. I'd have the baby in spring, before the summer so I wouldn't be hugely pregnant, uncomfortable, AND hot...
I prayed for twins. That way I could get two down with one pregnancy, right? :) I figured God didn't get that request very often, so I thought He'd grant it to me... but the doctor never heard more than one heartbeat and eventually said I wasn't measuring big enough to have twins.... I also wanted a boy, but we know how that turned out... :)

I'd say my pregnancy progressed fairly smoothly. During some of the middle months I felt a little "under the weather," but actually puked only a few times. I just kept a snack handy, and munched when I felt I needed to. My muscles were tight, but we didn't have a bathtub in the apartment we were in. I'd get lightheaded while standing for a long time, so I'd just turn on the shower and sit on the floor as the water poured down. My sense of smell was heightened, and I had a VERY easy gag reflex.

I did get "mean." Jon would tell me that I was being "mean" and I never realized it at the time, but looking back, I was pretty grouchy/irritated/argumentative/mean. Sorry!

Then the last few months, my nasal passages were constantly congested and couldn't smell anything. I caught colds very easily, and coughed a lot. I attribute my not "showing" for a while to the coughing, it kept my abdominal muscles tight (that, and I was training hard for my competition, and was the skinniest I've ever been only a couple months before...)
May 2009

Then we moved into our duplex (the renter's side, while Jon and Dad remodeled our side). It was lame, because I couldn't help as much as I normally could...

I remember feeling the baby move, and it felt like gas bubbles moving around inside me. It was around 17-18 weeks. I remember having Jon put his cheek to my belly, not knowing if he'd be able to feel, but she did a huge flip, and he felt it. So weird!

We decided we wanted to find out if it was a boy or girl, and that's usually possible at 20 weeks. Well, that was around Christmas, and my doctor was leaving, and I wanted to have ultrasound photos framed and give them to my family as gifts... so I scheduled our appointment I was going to be just a day or two shy of 20 weeks.

Jon was able to get off work to go with me.  The ultrasound tech was very thorough, maneuvering the wand, and taking the standard measurements. Then she asked if I'd had any dreams of the baby. I told her of a dream I had, where I was taking care of a little boy with special needs, and she said frankly: "Well, It's a girl." Jon wanted a girl :) Our Little Girl. Too bad we'd only ever agreed on boy names...

A couple days later, I was able to meet with my doctor, and he said everything in the ultrasounds looked great. The radiologist had looked at the measurements, and everything looked fine, except he said my due date was probably supposed to be May 12. Eh, what's four days, right?

The last part of pregnancy was fine. Just regular discomforts of having a baby inside one's belly... I stood on the stairs, using the higher stair to put on my socks and shoes. My last day of work was April 30th, a week before the due date. A week or so before she arrived, I painted my toenails :)

Brenna & Kiana
April 2010

Monday, August 30, 2010

Poker Fiends

On Saturday, we went over to Beth and Thad Curtis' home (as we frequently do) for a sort of date/hangout night.  We were joined by Collun and Sarah Ellis. We always end up talking, joking, and having a great time.
That night, Beth suggested we get out the poker set (since we had it in the car) and that's just what we did.

We had fun playing several rounds of poker and twenty-one, probably making up the rules as we went, since none of us are professionals :) Anyway, we also ended up laughing until we cried. You had to be there for it to be so funny but it went like this:

Thad had dealt out two cards to each player, and cards to the middle. I'm pretty sure at least two rounds of betting had taken place, and at least two people had folded. Then Sarah looked over at Collun and said: "Collun, you're only holding one card!?!"

Collun then quickly reached for his second card that had been sitting face-down below his hand and simply said "Wow." And we all started busting up! HAHA!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Parable of the Cherries

I bought some cherries at the store, so when I wanted something sweet, I'd snack on them rather than something less healthy... *Don't ask how much I spent on them, that's beside the point- AND a sore subject: WHY is junk food less expensive?* Anyway, they looked like this:

As I was enjoying a few of the cherries, I came upon one that had a blemish. Not rotten, not gross or anything, but it had an imperfection on the surface. I considered tossing it out: who wants something imperfect? But, I took a second look at that imperfect cherry in my grasp, then thought "Hmm, why not?" So I ate that imperfect cherry...

And it was one of the sweetest, most delicious ones of the whole bunch. 

Then it hit me: Often times people with imperfections are the sweetest, most enjoyable ones of the whole bunch. And in reality, none of us are perfect

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Happy Birthday Dad!

Hi Web, Brenna here!
Tomorrow is August 22nd, aka: My Dad's Birthday! This is the first birthday he'll be a grandpa! I'm excited. We're going up to his house after church, and making homemade ice cream! (One of his favorites!)
Dad is a great guy, a wonderful Grandpa, and I look forward to seeing Eva grow up with him in her life. Here's why:

Dad taught me how to serve others. When he sees a need, he fills it. "Your Dad is probably the most service-oriented person I've ever met." - Jon

Dad loves to laugh.

He is a hard worker. But if there's an easier way to complete a task without sacrificing quality, he'll let you in on the secret :)

Dad is honest.

He is protective. When teenagers would speed down our road, he'd throw stuff out in the street to make them slow down.

Dad knows a lot about many things, and if he doesn't know it, he knows just the person who will. -He's my real-life MacGyver.

He is very positive, and has a good attitude.

He is supportive. He spent time with us as kids, be it homework, (except math or spelling: those were Mom's departments) sports, telling stories, enjoying nature, or just making us laugh.

He and Mom are a team: When we'd ask him for something, he'd ask: "What did your Mother say?"

He gives great gifts: One birthday he gave me a set of hockey gear. Another birthday, after I had a car, I got a tool set :)

His quirky sense of humor. Sometimes we just respond to him, "Oh, Dad!..."

Before I knew my ABC's, I could name all the North American game animals you could think of.

He wears the gaudy Hawaiian shirt I brought back from Oahu for him. It makes me smile every time.

Dad will bend over backwards to accommodate you and make anyone feel comfortable. 

He built his house, and taught me many skills during that process.

He spent countless hours with Jon remodeling our duplex.

His expression lights up whenever he sees you. 

Dad always has a smile on his face. 

-Love you Daddy. I'll always be your little girl.

Just starting

We are trying to get back to a simpler life, slower, but still informed. We'll try to break our Facebook addiction with blogging!