Thursday, September 15, 2011

[not so] wordless wednesday #2 "boys just want to be like daddy"

wordless wednesday #2
it's wednesday which only means one thing...
it's a [not so] wordless wednesday linking partay!
so let's get this party started!

last wednesday i decided to start off my [not so] wordless wednesday to introduce myself by using inspirational pictures that brought out the kid in me 
it was very therapudic to write about memories taking me back to my childhood.  i was a very blessed child who can honestly say hand on heart, girl scout honor, had the most amazing up bringing.  my sister and i were 4 years apart, and sure, we may not have always gotten along, but, we are so close now that none of that matters.   we are one of the few families who did not have to deal with a family divided.  our mom and dad have been and are still madly in love with each other.  we may have made the "icky" face and laughed while pointing fingers [much like my children do now] while mommy and daddy snuggled on the couch or kissed secretly [or so they thought] in the corner of the kitchen, but inside our hearts were as happy as a bird with a french fry [*ahem, totally took that little analagy from my "ying" aka best friend jen] 

 so, this week's post i decided to share a few little shots of my little boys isaac and gunnar.  i got my new camera and took it for a test run. they were out playing and well, i couldn't help but get tickled as i watched them "pretend".  it melted my heart.  they were so sweet...first we were out in the front yard, then we ventured to the back yard when their little land of make believe came to life and i was lucky enough to be a part of it.  

i think the only way to title this would be
"boys just want to be like daddy"

first, we were in the front yard, and they were interested in mommy's camera
here's gunnar with his string cheese "want some?"  "no, thanks sweetie"

i have to tell you, i don't know what it is, but my boys go through this stage in which they do not like clothes.  i just don't get it.  it starts at about the age of 2 and continues until they go to kindergarten.  they only want to wear their under-roos.  what's the deal?  isaac, thankfully, wears shorts all of the time and even will put on a shirt.  but, usually is seen shirtless.  but gunnar, oh no.  that kid loves to only wear his under-roos.  he will get dressed in a heart beat if someone comes over.  it's the funniest thing.  he'll disappear and the next thing you know he's magically dressed.  it always makes me laugh.  [you know what, even alyssa went through a little phase like this.  but, for her, she only wanted to wear her bathing suit or dress up clothes]  what a difference.  anywho...

gunnar then gave me a squishy face...i love how dirty he looks.  haha.  classic little boy.
so, i have my brown eye'd baby and my blue eye'd baby.  isaac wants to be behind the camera...oh how i hate to tell him no, but i can't afford [literally] to break this one!  [my first DSLR after many smaller cheap point and shoots that i must admit i have broken] he is a fun guy to follow when he's not begging to take a picture, because he has such a great imagination.  he gives me the funniest looks too.

"please, just one picture?"

"just one?  come on mom..."

after letting him sit between my legs and squeeze up through the strap [which thankfully he's small enough to do that] he was a happy guy and he snapped a great picture of our cat bill.  he's an old outdoor [by choice] cat. he has moved with us to every new duty station and every place we move to he decides whether or not he wants to live in the house or not.  we happen to live in the country, so this cat is smart.  he comes to the house to eat and if it's cold he'll come in and if it's raining but other than than that, he loves it outside.  i like it because there is no kitty litter box!  score!  so, here is isaac's photography skills 

i framed his picture so he would feel like a "real photographer"

now i have a happy boy and we decide to go to the back yard.  
but, before we, go, daddy calls and the boys talk to him "mommy let
 me take a picture with her camera!" "mommy took a picture of me" [i then had to explain that i did not let him take the picture by himself, lol]

this picture is so sweet

i mentioned in another post that the boys had dug a hole in the yard.  well, this is what they've been doing.  i can't help but laugh because they are truly being creative.  i have been seeing them taking daddy's "extra" tool's outside and bringing them back in when they are cleaning up when it's time to come in for dinner.  i don't hear fighting so i have no need to really go outside and continually supervise.  they are old enough now [and we have a 7 foot privacy fence] where they can be left out in our back yard and they don't get into things that they aren't supposed to.  it's safe, they won't get kidnapped, it's our yard.  the only way you get in is through our house, so i know when they come and go. 

well, after we were in the front yard, they wanted to play in the back yard.  it was so nice out i decide to just relax and enjoy the cooler weather we've been having.  with camera in tow, i follow them out.  isaac goes back into the house and grabs his tools.  then what happens next i'm just literally feeling my heart melting i had to take this opportunity to take a few snap shots.

at first the tools just sit on the dirt.  this is a big circle where the pool that was up all summer killed the grass.  it will go back up next summer, but this fall it will be their "track"  [notice gunnar in his under-roos, lol] they are making their vroom vroom noises and having a grand time

"gunnar hand me the wratchet" i don't think either one of them even knows what a wratchet is, but without even a hesitation, gunnar grabs the closest tool and hands it to his brother
back and forth the exchange takes place...
because apparently a wrench is what is best used for digging holes according to gunnar

then i notice isaac...

"isaac honey, what are you doing?" "oh, i'm just fixing the bug" "what's wrong with it?" "it's sluggish" "ok, well, how are you going to make it work?" "by taking the slug out of it"  lol, now that is genius!  =)

i just love it when the boys act like their dad.  i think it's really sweet.  just like when little girls act like their mommy's. there is just something about them mimiking the adults around them that is adorable to me.  little kids acting like adults.  [insert pouty lip and me saying awh that is so stinkin cute]  it literally melts my heart.  if only you could have heard them interact.  it went a little along the lines of:

"gunnar, dude, pass me the wratchet.....thanks bro."  [he made these click click bang bang sounds with the "wratchet" which was actually a set of pliars the first time, a wrench the second time, screw driver the third, you get the idea...]  "yup" was gunnar's reply which by the way made me laugh because he was very busy. [apparently digging a hole with one of the extra "wratchet's" *ahem* wrenches was much more important to him] "gunnar, dude, if you want to stay on the pay roll, you need to keep your head in the game.  i need a lube."  gunnar was now irritated.  he had lost interest in isaac's fantasy "mr.fix it" car repair shop.  i mean, they'd been playing for over 15 minutes by this point.  he's only 4 for crying out loud!

he stands up and grabs the bucket o'tools, which was actually an old basket i had in my bathroom that used to house brushes [i was throwing it away, and i found it under the sink full of tony's odds and ends tools.  mmm k]
gives his brother the basket and with a very calm voice says what may very well be my favorite thing this entire week:
"isaac, i am not on your payrule.  mommy pays me.  you are not the boss to me. take yur tuls i'm diggin"

and with that, isaac and i exchanged glances and we couldn't help but laugh.  he resumed playing, gunnar resumed digging and i snapped a few more pictures.  it was a pretty fun day.  those boys are quite funny when they are not fighting.
if you made it this far, i applaud you.  i know it's a wordless wednesday, but i'm def not a girl of few words.  so i effectionatly call it a [not so] wordless wednesday.  see you next wednesday =) looking forward to reading your posts!  don't forget to comment and link up!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

the abc's of moi

the abc's of moi

i was invited to join a little fun event as a better way to getting to know me from my friends at voiceBoks   i hope you have fun reading them.  i have had fun reading the abc's of my friend's so this will be fun to fill out.  here goes...and oh by the way, don't be surprised, there is no way that i can use 1 word.  

age i am 32 and loving my 30's! although, when i turned 29 i think i had a mini break down  argile love the print it's fabulous seriously, it just is, especially on tights.
butterfly they follow me everywhere.  they even land on me.  when my daughter was diagnosed w/the brain tumor, my uncle who is chief of the shawnee nation in california named her butterfly dancing because everytime he would pray for her he'd have a butterfly dancing around her.  even before she was born, her baby bedding was butterfly themed.  then, when my niece passed away, i noticed them even, they are always around and they comfort me and my daughter notices them too.  brain tumor that word will be a part of me for the rest of my life.
coffee i big puffy heart love it but it needs to have sugar free vanilla creamer and agave or splenda in it!  converse any color, anytime, anywhere. 
do it yourself because i'm cool like that! i honestly just learned how to read how to build furniture plans.  i have made a few pieces and even turned my drab dining room table into a fab one.  now i love it.  donughts i love them but they don't love me.  it's a sad relationship really
extra weight i'm on a mission to lose it this year!  i can help you too if you are interested let me know and follow my posts in "good bye granny - hello nanny!" lol [and no, it's actually not because i eat too many donughts] eureka the word bugs me eclectic a word i use to describe my style
family they are the reason i get up everyday. fart a common word used in our house lol fabulous is a word i probably use way too much
god who is the center of our household.
hawai'i i grew up there and never knew just how lucky i was until i left.  isn't it always that way? geez, i was spoiled.
ireland because i cherish my irish background and would love to visit ireland one day same goes for italy but i'm not italian, my husband is
jesus because he died on the cross for you and me and the least i can do is share his free gift to as many that will listen - before it's too late
kindergarten which is where i will be spending most of my free time next year because my 3rd child will be starting school and i want to be the room mom
laughing loudly - it's the best sound. ever!  laundry is something i despise doing.  thankfully, my husband hates the dishes, so i do those and he does the laundry.  
mamaka the name my husband calls me when he's not calling me babe morning my favorite time of day midnight sun the book i can't wait to come out by stephanie meyer because i am a twilight fan and let's face it, edward and bella's lovestory is that good mochi a delight i can't get enough of but i only get it back home
norby my maiden name which i hated growing up and respect it now that i'm older
ohhh eemmm geee because i love that word!
pinterest need i say more? polycystic ovarian syndrome i have it and was misdiagnosed for many years
quaint the kind of town i'd like to live in someday quirky a great word to describe me
retro i love retro style in fact, i think i was probably born in the wrong era.  i can pretty much guarantee it
stylish atleast i like to think so short i can't really help that smiles a lot in fact, in school, my nick name was "smiley" ya.  i was a cheerleader. what? don't judge.
thinks outside the box i def do that.  i made a coat/back pack rack out of my sons toddler bed head board.  yup.  could't get rid of it.  so, now i can look at it and think of him as a wee one....
unbelievably easy to talk to and people tell me their life stories all the time.  which is fine because i would love to be a counselor some day to teens.  i think that from the age of 8/9 and on girls especially need guidance and really should be payed extra attention to and should have the opportunity to feel safe and be able to talk to someone they trust even if it's outside their home.  so, i'd love to be a counselor at a school.  someone that young girls can relate to and feel comfortable talking to.  i had the opportunity to counsel a young girl and later she shared that the night i listened to her she was going to take her life, but i showed her love and that i cared.  she had her entire death planned [and told me in detail] she thanked me for taking the time to talk to her that night.  ever since then, i have had a passion to counsel. 
very passionate about suicide awareness, especially in teens ViSalus is going to change my world!
will do anything for a family member or friend in need, i understand what it's like to be in hard times and if i can help in any way i will 
xanax is an over used anti depressant.  while i was in the process of being diagnosed with pcos, this is one that i wasn't prescribed. 
yo-yo'ing i never could quite get the hang of it
zoologist in the 5th grade, it's the job i wanted to do "when i grew up" and, now that i am still "growing up" i love to take my children to the zoo and see their faces and faces as they watch the elephants, gorillas and giraffes in their habitats.  it's like being a kid again myself.

Monday, September 12, 2011

battle of the buldge, or is it?

jiggle it just a little bit

note: this is not my stomach, although, i can make mine do this

it's been 4 years since i had my last child.   after he was born, the migraines started.  within 5 months i was 127lbs.  for my 5 foot 3" frame, that is quite small.  and i loved it.with the migraines, came anxiety and panic attacks.  out of nowhere.  i had no idea what was going on.  i also noticed skin tags and my skin was an odd shade of greenish gray.  that's the only way i can explain the color.  my hair was falling out and eventually just looked thin and lacked shine and luster. so, i started tanning and cut my hair in a cute short style.  you couldn't tell my hair was thinning and my skin tone was "for a year i kept the weight off.  i've always had a weight issue.  it runs in my family along with diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.  [thankfully i do not have those issues].  early 2009 i had gained a little bit of weight, which was fine because i had actually gotten too small [who would have ever thought i'd be saying that].

actually, about 15lbs but like i said i had gotten too small around 117lbs and looked sick [and i was but didn't know it at the time]
 later that year, in november, our family was hit with a tragedy that we not only never expected, but it is something that i am choosing to not blog about.  just know that it was a hard time in my life and i went into a deep and dark depression.  for three months i can honestly say i do not know how i survived.  the only logical explanation is that god literally was willing me to.  i can't think of what i did during that time.  i can't recall conversations.  nothing.  i only remember christmas day because i talked to my sister and we went to ohio because tony wouldn't let me not celebrate christmas.  he knew i didn't feel like it.  but, he also knew i needed to be around extended family.  and he was right.

depression caused me to choose food.  i chose food when i was sad.  food when i was mad.  food when i was angry.  food all the time.  chocolate was my comfort and cookies were my reward.  [i read that in the book made to crave and it made perfect sense]. 

2009 passed and 2010 came.  alyssa's tumor grew and here we go in the hospital.  more weight gain.  only about 10lbs.  still not so bad.  i decide i've had it.  i become a vegetarian for health reasons.  mainly for alyssa.  tumors grow [so i read] or feed on sugar...i lose 20lbs.  cool.later that year in july i go on a missions trip.  this is the best experience ever!  i am renewed!  i am refreshed!   i will never go home.  well, i do.  but i don't want to. lima is amazing!    i contract a bacterial infection in my intestines.  from getting the shower    water in my mouth. great.


i didn't get sick until i came home.  phew.  that would have been bad with a long plane ride and going through customs and all that, plus the drive from atlanta back to alabama, but, within hours of walking through my front door, i'm throwing up and having the most painful stomach cramps.  the next 3 months are like this.  i am dizzy, nauseated, sore stomach, diarrhea, throwing up, light headed...and guess what? instead of losing body changes all the food i eat [even soup] into sugar instead of energy.  i couldn't understand it.  until i did.

so, after many many many trips to the er [to the point that i have my own room -- literally when i check in they say hey erika, your room is available, go on back, we'll be with you in a bit, go ahead and get as comfortable as you can.  grab a blanket, you know where they are.] !!!???!!! i know. sad.  it did take 3 weeks to get my diagnosis because they needed a poo sample and  well i was peeing out of my boo boo [sorry tmi] so, they made me drink an ensure and pepto [the entire bottle - uck] and the doc and i sat for an hour and had a talk about god.  he hooked me up to morphine.  until it only lasts for 20 minutes =(  and the pain returns.  [that's when you know you are in trouble...even morphine won't take the pain away] then i poo'd and they came back and said "well, we know what you have!" "good news is, it's just a bacterial infection and not a parasite.  the bad news is, it should have gotten out of your system by now" [by this time it was going on a month] so, i was given antibiotics, something for dizziness, stomach pain, nausea and a regular pain killer.  it took 3 weeks for the stomach pain to go away completely and about 4 months for the dizziness to go away.  the doctor told me that if i was still in pain the following week to return.  although the knots in my stomach did finally go away, the dizziness took quite a bit to fade.

after my missions trip experience i came home having fallen in love with the childrenthere.  if would have been able to, i would have taken a baby home with me.

after being sick for so long i had to get off of all my medication [including birth control] and basically start from scratch.  and since i had the baby itch again, i didn't get back on birth control.  seeing as that was a good idea i also remained off of my meds so that it wouldn't interfere with my pregnancy.  i am very fertile and i did not want to pass any medication to my child.  so, we started trying. 

month by month i got negative pregnancy tests.


two months.  negative.  four months.  six.  this is not normal.  god?  is a fourth child too much to ask for?  during this time, i started noticing subtle changes in my body... so, i wrote them down:

have joint pain. i sweat because i get so hot. i sweat so

 bad that i soak my clothes. literally it looks like i have 

sat in water. even in an air conditioned room.

i am nauseated all.of.the.time. i am constantly

over heating. i can't wear makeup [and i don't even care 


 this point] because it literally just runs off my face. i

have the worst acne right now [again, i could care less]

the hair on my arms has gotten very thick [i shave,

so at first i didn't notice it] i started noticing hair on 


toes and top of my feet. my hair on my head is falling 


i have skin tags [one reason i went to the doctor, and

so glad that i did, i went to get them removed and she

started asking me more detailed questions and we put 


 puzzle together] i am so sleepy it's ridiculous YET i 


sleep until i'm to the point i'm exhausted my body 


gives up and allows me to go to bed. i'm an emotional

 wreck. i can be happy one minute and crying the next

[now it makes sense that at one point i was diagnosed

 with bi-polar disorder but i wouldn't accept that

 diagnosis because i just

 knew i wasn't -- and i'm not] i started noticing hair on 


 face [more than just the "peach fuzz"] also started

noticing skin pigment changes on my face. i crave sugar

 and carbs. usually chocolate and bread.  i have

debilitating migraines.  panic, anxiety, insomnia, cramps 


bad that it hurts to even breath [each month it's

worse on one side more than the other]

it's a year later.  i am 56lbs heavier.  i am not pregnant

and i have all of the above symptoms that have

come up.  doctor after doctor tell me i'm

depressed.  ok.  maybe.  who wouldn't be after gaining

that much weight?  and, have you read the symptoms?

hello.  i am hot. all. of. the. time.  literally.

even in the air conditioning!

i swear i'm going through menopause and i'm only 31!

i go on a missions trip only to come back sicker than 


i lose a family member WAY too soon.

who wouldn't be depressed.

only, i KNOW i'm not.

so, i decide.  i'm going to my doctor and i'm going to 


her listen to me.  i'm NOT leaving until she HEARS

me.  i will cry if i have to.  it won't be hard.

i mean, i'm in pain.  i hurt.  i feel like i'm 80 years

old.  i can't clean my house like i normally do.

i will have bursts of energy for a day or two

only to sleep for a week straight.  then be up

for a month.  something is off.



i make the appointment.

first we talk about my cramping.

she listens.

then we talk about my skin tags.

she listens.

she notices my acne.

she notices my skin tone.

she notices my pigment change on my face.

she asks me a few questions.

i tell her about getting off the pill and noticing that is

really when my symptoms started.

she listens.

she weighs me.

she checks my blood pressure.

she asks me a few more questions.

she explains a few things and tells me i need

to go to my ob/gyn.

for the time being she prescribed me a good

pain killer.

ok, i feel pretty good because she did tell me what she

thought was going on [i know i haven't told you yet

but it's coming don't worry] i pick up my

pain meds and happen to run into a friend that

i hadn't seen in a while.  we chat for a few minutes

and she asks how things are going.  i tell her a little 


what is going on and she pretty much nails it on the 


just by looking at me she can tell what i have.  by the 


on my jawline.  i'm pretty much shocked at this point.

i end up seeing my ob/gyn the following wednesday.  


not actually him, but his colleague.  i get blood work 


as well.  i bring my list to him and he looks it over.

we discuss everything in depth.  i'm not a "normal"

case.  the fact that i have children is basically

why i wasn't diagnosed earlier in life.

i have been on birth control since i was 13 because of

severe pelvic/ovarian pain.  so, my syndrome

was kept "at bay".  when we were ready

to start trying, i would get off of the pill

and we'd get pregnant right away.  then when baby was

6 weeks old, i'd get back on the pill.  it wasn't

until gunnar was born that i got migraines and was 


for them and anxiety as well as panic [not knowing

it was a sign of my syndrome]  and when

we were ttc #4 it really started to show it's head.

friends, i have poly cystic ovarian syndrome.

it is not a syndrome that can be cured.

it is a syndrome that makes it very hard to lose weight.

it is a syndrome that if not treated, will literally

make you miserable.

there are medicines that are used to lessen the 


i, for one, do not want to use a pharmaceutical.  i would

rather use a natural whole food source supplement.  i 


been introduced to one.  god works in mysterious

ways.  not only have i learned of this oh so

fabulous supplement, and was able to taste it

[can we say yummmmmmmmy??]

i was able to read and hear [meaning i met ladies

who had real life stories to share]

testimonies of what it has done for them!  ladies

my age and older and even younger [men too!]

who have lost weight, [score!] had symptoms

disappeared [oh can you imagine??!] to the point

that they feel so good they can't even remember

the last time they felt THIS good!  why am i just NOW

hearing about this?  you know why?  i honestly

believe god allowed me to go through this so that i 


use my blog and be able to share my story with other

women who NEED to hear it.  i really do.

so, i pray that i can help just one person better their

health.  maybe they can share this with

their mother.

their sister.

best friend.












if i can simply help just one person change their life 


the better, i will be very happy.  i am looking

forward to getting my ViSalus Nummy Nummy Shakes

very soon.  living life the visalus way is going to be 


life good.  pain free.  that, to me, is worth everything!

what's it worth to you?

pass it on!  make someone happy!