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Monday, February 8, 2016

7th Birthday Celebration- Her Story

Today is a very special day.  

Actually, every day is a special day for us.  God has blessed us with two beautiful children.  But like with any relationship, parenthood has not been easy.

When Bill and I began dating, we knew that we wanted to have a family together.  After our son was born, I faced many difficulties including Post Partum Depression.  But with the help of my husband and God, I over came my depression and made a life changing decision.  I vowed to try very hard to be the best mother I could be for my son and that he was never going to feel alone and unwanted.
I was no longer going to dwell on my mother's decision to disown me.   In order to be a better person, wife and mother, I needed to move past that.
 
When my husband came to me with the idea of adding one more bundle of joy to our family, I had many doubts.  Especially, when I had finally managed to keep up with a full time job, motherhood and of course my wifely duties. 

When we became pregnant, I was static but that came to a stop when we lost the pregnancy at 12 weeks.  While it was difficult, physically and emotionally, we decided to try again. Keeping in mind that we did lose one pregnancy before we were able to have our son.  

After many months of trying, we became pregnant for the fourth time.  But by 16 weeks we were given the very sad news that it was not a liable pregnancy and that it was a matter of time before I started the process of miscarrying.   When it eventually happened, I was distraught and emotionally I was exhausted.  I decided not to try again, and accepted the fact that God only wanted me to have one child.
 
I remember the day my best friend, Maria called me.  It was early morning and I had just walked into my office.  She needed to take a pregnancy test but didn't want to do it alone.  

Therefore, she persuaded me to do one with her, even though I was sure it was a waste of money and a perfectly good pregnancy test because I knew nothing was there waiting for me to discover.  We argued while we were on the phone, okay more like I wined the entire time while we were waiting for results of the home pregnancy test, I was flabbergasted by the two little pink lines telling me to "shut up and think again".  I couldn't believe it, we were BOTH pregnant! 

While I didn't share the news right away with my husband, I did call my Doctor right away.  My husband didn't find out until October 2007.  I didn't want him to suffer another heartbreak; instead, I decided to live in fear alone until I was 100% sure that everything was good.   So, Thank You Mom and Mari for keeping my secret, which, if you asked my husband, is the only secret I have been able to keep from him.  Yeah, I can't keep a secret from him!

But my happiness was short lived.  On, November 2007 I was put on mandatory bed rest, I was not allowed to work or do the smallest task.  I was bed bound due to the lack of amniotic fluid, our inability to gain weight and the baby's inability to grow at a proper rate.  It didn't matter how much I ate, how much I drank, nothing helped.  We had to go through bi-weekly ultrasounds and we were at the doctor's office weekly to monitor the baby's heart rate and movement.  I was terrified every day.

But our baby was showing us even then that she was a fighter.  By February 1st, I had grown restless, and it was clear that our baby felt the same way. 

On February 7th, after another ultrasound, we discovered Ms. Bree was faced the right away and ready to come so I decided to give her a hand! How you ask?  I walked the mall with a huge pretzel in one hand and a jug of water in the other.  By 8 pm, my contractions were strong and steady and Grandmother had finally arrived from North Carolina to take care of little man.  I was admitted around 9:30 p.m. that night and I was ready to rock and roll!  However, our little Bree was not!  Ms. Bree had fallen asleep, flipped the wrong way and my contractions had stopped.  At 5 a.m. and after 9 hours of labor, I was tired, hungry (okay I was mainly hungry) and ready to push that lazy baby out but I couldn't since she was facing the wrong way. 

The nurses tried everything to get her to move to no avail, my doctor had no other choice but to break the water and try to move her but my baby was a stubborn baby! 

Ms. Bree made her entrance right before lunch time at 11:03 am weighting 5 lb 10 oz. 


I honestly think she smelled the food or maybe it was me telling her that she needed to come out because mommy wanted to eat!  And if you know me, than you know that nothing comes between me and my food.  



Little Billy met his sister on the evening on February 8th.   While he wanted a little brother, he was more than happy to have a little sister. 


Ms. Bree was born with a head full of straight hair as well as "infant jaundice", which is a yellow discoloration in a newborn baby's skin and eyes.  This usually occurs because the baby's blood contains an excess of bilirubin (bil-ih-ROO-bin), a yellow-colored pigment of red blood cells. Infant jaundice is a common condition, particularly in babies born before 38 weeks gestation (preterm babies).  She had to spend some time under the direct sun.


Ms. Bree was not all that well for her first birthday but, the fevers, congestion and the teething didn't stop her from enjoying her first cake!  Ms. Bree started experiencing lots of colds and ear infections.  


A few days before her second birthday, Ms. Bree and Little Man became ill with the Flu.  While our son responded well to the antibiotics and breathing treatments, our little princess actually developed pneumonia and had to be hospitalized for a week.  Her inability to eat, drink and use the bathroom became an issue.  During our stay at the hospital, she had many wonderful nurses and around the clock care.  But even during this difficult time, she never stopped smiling and her brother did everything he could to make her smile.


After her recovery, Ms. Bree had surgery to implant the ear tubes and remove her adenoids.  She thrived after the surgery.  She began to talk and began to sleep through the night.  I no longer had to make sure she was laying the right way in order for her to breath.  But that really never stopped me from looking at our video monitor.  I mean, I'm super paranoid, I'm sure that if you look up the word you will see a photo of me!



Ms. Bree loves to dance and sing.  She is a girly girl but she can easily switch and play rough with the boys.  The perfect balance if you ask me.       



5th Birthday Celebration- Frozen Theme



And who can forget her Frozen Birthday Party! She celebrated her birthday with many of her classmates. 




To read more about this amazing bash click here:  Her Frozen-5th-Birthday Celebration





6th Birthday Celebration- Barbie Theme



This was the year we went all out.  All the DIY decorations, cake and treats.  Her special outfit designed by Miss. Teeny Fab Couture and her very special Barbie Cookies made by Tiffany's Homemade.





To see the full post please click here:   Her 6th Barbie Birthday Party.


7th Birthday Celebration- Monster High Theme








 We are so glad that our daughter was able to celebrate her birthday with her family and close friends.  Ms. Bree is due to have surgery in March 2016.  Please continue to pray for our little angel.  We pray that her inexplicable fevers stay away and that the surgery helps her body get rid of everything that is currently weakening her system.  And that after the surgery she is able to enjoy her childhood even more.





A Special Letter to My Daughter


Dear Bree:

You are now seven years old and truly I can't believe it.  I remember the day I first held you in my arms.  You were so small, skin so soft and delicate.  Trust me when I say that your father will always be wrapped around your little finger.  You may not know what that means now, but one day you will know what that means. 


You have grown into a beautiful little girl who loves to smile, who loves God and always chooses to do right thing.  You are independent, caring and talented in many ways.  Your love and dedication to art and dance surprises me.

Your ability to see the best in everything or everyone shows me every day how kind your heart truly is.  Please continue to do that.  God has given you a kind heart full of joy that people find very hard to ignore.  Your laugh is infectious.  But when the time comes, the time when you experience cruelty and rejection, don't forget that I will always be there for you.  There are many things in this world that I will not be able to protect you from or fix, but I will always be there to comfort you. 

I know I'm not perfect, I know I scream a lot and I promise to do better.  Don't ever be afraid to share things with me, because I will never judge. 
And if one day a boy breaks your heart and makes you feel less, we will tell your father and he can go hunting. 

I pray every day that you never stop caring for your brother, he may not tell you this, but he loves you very much.   You are his baby sister and he will always be your older brother. 

You are very special to us, even when we are mad at each other, okay, I have to think about this for a minute because we are never mad at each other… You are perfect, from your big hair, tan skin and toothless smile, don't ever forget that.  I promise to improve as a Mother and to always be your friend.  You are my baby girl, my only girl and I will always love you no matter what.   Your father and I are so blessed to have you in our lives, our love for you will never end, will never falter, this is an everlasting love! 

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Review: Gore-Geous Monster High Mega Block Set

Hello Everyone!!

     A new year has started and like every Christmas, our kids receive a few gifts from their Aunts, Uncles and cousins.  This Christmas our daughter received lots of "Shopkins" and "Monster High" dolls and related items.  

     While my sister in law, Rhonda indulged our little princess with the newest Monster High Dolls from the Boo York, Boo York line.  Aunt Patricia gifted our kids with a "Toys R Us" gift card.  

     Needless to say that Ms. Bree used her gift card wisely and purchased a few Shopkins and this cute little set of Monster High Mega Blocks.  

   
    This Gore-Geous Cleo De Nile Mega Block set was only $7.49 (+ tax) at our local Toys R Us! 

Features:


  • 87 Pieces in total;
  • It builds a "Gore-Geous Vanity, Fan and a  Lounge Chair complete with lipstick, blush brush, perfume bottle, secret diary and her own Iphone; 
  • It also contains a very highly detailed, Cleo De Nile mini monster figure with removable necklace and two bracelets.





Product Description:

"It's a fang-tastic day at Monster High and now you can join in on the fun with the Creeperific Character Assortment by Mega Blocks! Each of these scary-cool sets features a buildable location from the world of Monster High, a mini monster figure representing one of your favorite ghouls from school and plenty of fab accessories. There's a secret to every set, so don't miss the flip-to-reveal feature to uncover hidden labs, compartments, gear and other clawesome surprises! Each sold separately. Themes, characters and accessories may vary. Ideal for ages 6 and up."



                                               Please subscribe to our channel for more!

      This set can be combined with other Mega Blocks Monster High® play sets available at the store in order to build your own fabulous Monster High world!

       While this play set is recommended for children 6 and up, I would recommend adult supervision while putting the set together because of the very small pieces.  

       I give this set two thumbs up, it was less than $10.00 and it only took us twenty to twenty five minutes to put it together.   To be honest, it took me seven to ten minutes to put the flames on the tiny candle sticks... that was the only hardest part of the entire set!

      Thanks for reading!! 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Easy 30 Minute Recipe: Spicy Peanut Noodles



Welcome back everyone!! 

    Christmas is over and we find ourselves with a refrigerator full of "leftovers"!  Thankfully, we have a large freezer and decided to freeze half of our baked ham. mashed potatoes and collard greens.   

    Going through the refrigerator, I found a box of left over Lo Mein from Tuesday night.  I'm sure I'm not the only mother who eats the left overs so they won't spoil while the rest of the family eat something else.  right? right? 

    I love Asian food!  This dish requires peanuts and while "nuts" are really not good for my skin, it does not prevent me from eating, "Cold Noodles with Sesame Sauce".  I just make sure that I limit the amount of times I eat it per month.  This sauce is essentially made with peanut butter.  The dish is meant to be spicy and served cold, but I prefer it warm with lots of veggies, so I created my own version of it. 

Ingredients: 

  Lo Mein Noodles (or cooked spaghetti noodles);
  1/2 Cup of Cilantro
  2 Tsp of Garlic
  2 Tsp of Ginger
  1/2 Large Yellow Onion
  2 Tbs Honey
  2 Tbs of Lemon Juice
  3/4 cup of Peter Pan "Honey & Creamy" Peanut Butter
  3 tbs of Soy Sauce
  1 Tbs of Red Pepper Flakes

Directions: 

    Peanut Sauce Mixture:  Combine peanut butter, honey, soy sauce, ginger, lemon juice, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes in a mixing bowl.  I suggest adding 1/4 cup of warm water to help loosen up the peanut butter.  Whisk until the sauce is smooth and well blended.  Add thinly sliced onion. 

    If your left over noodles are cold, heat them up in the microwave for about 2 minutes.  If you don't have left over noodles, you can use plain spaghetti noodles. Cook your spaghetti noddles as it is instructed in the box.  

   Add your noodles to the mixing bowl containing your peanut sauce mix and carefully mix them together until all the noddles are nicely covered by the sauce.  Add cilantro and your meal is now ready to eat!! 

Substitutions: 

Don't have some the fresh garlic or ginger? No problem, while fresh garlic and ginger is preferred, you can always use dry ingredients.  

4 Cloves of garlic = 2 Teaspoons of minced garlic or 1/2 teaspoons of Powder Garlic;
1 inch of fresh ginger = 2 tsp of Ground Ginger.

If you prefer your onions cooked  like my husband does, simply sautee your onions for about two to three minutes and then add them to your dish. 

Not a fan of spicy food? No problem, ignore the red pepper flakes.  

Extra Additions: 

Please feel free to add any kind of meat, i.e. thinly sliced chicken breast, shrimp, beef, even lightly fried tofu can be fantastically paired with this dish.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

DIY- Snow Globes

Hello Everyone!!! 

      The big day is almost here and my little ones at getting a little wrestles.  Due to unfavorable weather, they have not been able to go outside and play and boredom is starting to set in. 

      I know I have not posted any new hairstyles, but Ms. Bree's hair is still styled in two strand twists, but I will unravel all her twists on Sunday before we head out to Church.  

   Here is what her hair looks like now: 



      Now, I'm going to be sharing my friend Yari's idea!  This is a very easy and simple craft that all the kids will enjoy making.   Our scout elf, Snowflake brought the kids some snow globes as a gift, but because it has been raining heavily in the past couple days, she had no other choice but to use some of her magic to protect them.  Unfortunately, she had to disassemble them and the kids had to put them back together.  



    The Materials: 

  • Mason Jar (I already had these jars, but you can buy them at any store)
  • Glitter (1.99)
  • Their favorite figurine (if you think they will notice the figurine belongs to them, you can buy small ones from the Dollar Store)
  • Hot Glue Gun

    Directions:

(I did the following while the kids were asleep, after all, these were a gift from Snowflake)
  1. Hot glue your child's favorite figurine onto the inside of the lid;
  2. Let the glue cool;
     Below you can see Snowflake's special note to the kids  At the bottom of her note are the directions to complete the Snow Globe. 
        

  1. Add the glitter to the empty jar;
  2. Add water to the jar (all the way to the neck- but if your figurine is a bit in the large size, I suggest adding a bit less water.  You can always add some more later)
  3. Carefully insert your inner lid with your special figurine
  4. Seal tightly, flip, shake and enjoy your special Snow Globe.





      And your snow globe is all complete!  





      










Monday, December 14, 2015

Oh No, He Touched My Elf!!!!

Hey Everyone!! 

       I am sure many of your are very familiar with the "Elf On The Shelf" Tradition.  Yes, it's a bit annoying at times but let me assure you that the kids truly enjoy having them.  We adopted our little scout elf, "Snowflake" approximately three Christmases ago.  




       Personally, I had never heard of the Elf on the Shelf before until my son, who was seven years old then, came home telling me all about it.  Since it's never too late to start new traditions, we decided to do it.  

      Yes, like most parents we have forgotten to move the elf a few times and we had to blame it on Daddy.  I know, such a bad wife.  But in my defense, in some occasions, my darling husband places the elf where I CANNOT reach her!! 

      Yesterday, we had a very unfortunate incident. Well, our little Snowflake did.  My son had invited some friends over to play and one of them TOUCHED our elf to prove to our kids that Santa and the elves ARE NOT REAL!!! 

      I can't deny that I was furious and seeing my daughter in tears broke my heart into a million pieces!!
  
     While we understand that every family believe in different things.  We truly wish some parents would take the time to explain to their children that it's never okay to destroy  someone else's dream just because they don't believe in Santa, or like in our situation, the Elf on the Shelf.  

     If this ever happens to you, here are a few tips for you to follow to make the situation better for your little ones.    You can use the very same tips even if your little one touches the Elf by mistake, after all, these are children. 

    First, you have to visit Elf On The Shelf.  You will find several activities for the kids as well as ideas for the parents.  



     If the Elf is touched by mistake simply do the following:

1.   Have the kids write a letter to Santa explaining what happened; 
2.  Write a letter back to the kids (this is optional); 
3.  Sprinkle cinnamon around where the elf is;
4.  Have the kids blow a kiss; and
5.  sing a Christmas carol 



     Our kids sprinkled the cinnamon on top of her little blanket, but that was my mistake, my written instructions were not as clear (obviously)... hahaaa 



       Let your little scout elf rest for 24 hours and she will be back to her normal self! 


   Below are the original instructions from the Elf on the Shelf website, we just changed it a bit because of our situation and we needed to address the fact that our son's friend doesn't believe in magic. 

         "Christmas magic is very fragile, and if scout elves are touched they may lose their magic. If your scout elf has been touched, you can apologize by writing a letter to Santa, or saying you’re sorry to your elf. Then, please sprinkle a little cinnamon beside him or her before you go to bed; cinnamon is like vitamins for scout elves, and it helps them get back to the North Pole. Once they arrive, the North Pole doctors will check them out."

    My husband and I put a letter together answering our children's questions and requests.  When our son wrote the letter to Santa, he apologized but he asked Santa for a favor: 

   "Please forgive my friend, ...... for touching our special elf and I ask that you can make him believe in you"...

     While our daughter wrote: "I hope you are not mad at us, I still believe in you"....

    Therefore, we had to write something back, but writing a response letter from Santa it's totally optional.  

     I am glad that this little incident didn't kill the joy or the magic in our house.  Our son will soon find out the truth but we would like to be the ones to tell him.