Saturday, August 15, 2015

Mabel turned 2!

Mabel has been such a shining star in our family. It feels like yesterday that we sat the kids down in our front room and asked them if they wanted another baby in the family. The answer was a unanimous and enthusiastic YES!!!! We made the decision and celebrated by going to Village Inn for dinner! Noah, Presley, and Charlie got to participate in the ultra sound and watched my belly grow and grow. Charlie cried when he found out it wasn't going to be a baby brother!! This year he has continually told Mabel that he is glad that she is who she is. He just loves watching over her. Mabel is not only an awesome gal, but she brings out the awesome in all of us!

At this point in Mabel's life she is doing so many cute things. She has been learning so much this summer. She says tons of words and is saying a few 2 word sentences like "Thank you", "Please Mom", "Love you", etc. Her response to a lot of questions is a cheerful "Okay" instead of yes. Mabel is super into stuffed animals ansd baby dolls. She loves to load as many toys as possible in her arms. Mabel loves to pretend she is sleeping and giggles when you "fall for it".

Mabel is a big milk drinker and loves her ba ba! She naps and sleeps super well in her crib. She is our most scheduled child! When Mabel runs around, her head is super sweaty. She is the baldest of our babies and we are waiting on pins and needles waiting for that whispy hair to come in!

Mabel is the perfect book end to our family, we just adore her to pieces!

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Provo House BEFORE and AFTER

Now that we are exactly one week away from moving, I thought I'd share the before and afters of our Provo home! This was our first home purchase and we lived here for just under three years. We made it our own and felt comfortable, peaceful and so happy here. We brought home a baby, got jobs and job promotions, became a primary president and bishopric member, had a child get baptized and one get the preisthood, had another child start kindergarten and enter the realm of public schools... So many awesome memories. We will always cherish this place. We fixed it up and we were able to put it under contract after being on the market for five days. We could not have done it without the help of Josh's family, my dad and Ruth, and Josh's grandpa! Thanks a million!

Exterior BEFORE:
We took out some bushes that were getting out of control, added curbing and added a new maple tree. We also ditched the decorative fountain thingy and added succulents lavender and other fun plants. We replaced the garage door as well.
Front Living Room: 
This is the same room looking the other direction. We changed the window treatments in the whole house to plantation shutters, we pulled up carpet to place engineered hardwood, we painted the upper portion of the walls "Revere Pewter" by Benjamin Morre (we had Behr make it at Home Depot), we added picture boxes under the chair rail and painted all mouldings, trim and the ceiling bright white. We also changed out the light. 
Half Bath (pardon the nose picker-ha ha!):
We replaced the flooring with the hardwood, replaced the vanity with a pedestal sink. We added a cupboard above the toilet, added beadboard and painted it white and changed out the lighting. We also used Revere Pewter in this room.
Dining Room:
We wanted to use this as a functioning dining room so we kept it simple and added a table ;) We changed out the light, repainted and changed the windows and floors. Total transformation!
One of my Faves- The Kitchen:
We did a lot of work here! We changed out the appliances to stainless steal, we painted the cupboards "Asphalt Grey", We put in recessed lighting and removed the fluorescent lighting. We added two pendant lights, we added hardware to the cupboards and added a white subway tile back splash with a light grey grout. We added beadboard around the bar and we replaced the countertops with Corian adnd got a new sink and faucet. We also removed one cupboard and made open shelving.
Family Room (note the octagon cut out in the ceiling):
For this room I had big plans to revamp the fireplace. We will leave that to the next owners. We did fill in the octogan in the ceiling and added recessed lighting, wechanged the flooring, the ceiling fan, and the window treatments.
Upstairs Bath:
We ran out of time and didn't remodel the upstairs bathrooms. We added our colorful stuff to make it ours, though :)
Presley and Mabel's Room:
For this room we added crown moulding, painted the celing and mouldings bright white, and the walls a light blue color called "Iceberg" by Behr.
The Boys Room:
We added crown moulding and painted. The wall color here is "Grey Cashmere" by Benjamin Moore. I actually took one of their bed spreads in to color match the grey stripes. New carpet was next on the list, but we decided to bag it.
Master Bedroom:
We painted, changed the fan, and changed the window coverings. 

For our yard we removed the retaining wall and all the bushes. We added dark bark and curbing.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Josh Introduces Ameo to Zija!

We went to Zija Summit 2014 this year to see years of Josh's research put to use in a new system for determining quality in essential oils. It is emotional for me to see this video because I am so proud of the work Josh has done and I know first hand all the effort and sacrifice that went into it. ;)

If any of my friends or family is interested in purchasing or selling Ameo oils, let me know. This is such a huge opportunity as this breakthrough technology is going to sweep the industry! Growth is already multiplied what was expected.

Way to go Josh!! <3 comment-3--="" nbsp="">

Friday, August 22, 2014

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Molly Rose

I have been needing to blog about the recent events that took place in our amazing family.

They are so significant that I don't want to forget about them. Back in the fall we found out that the baby Annalee was carrying had a significant heart defect called an interrupted arch. Annalee learned all she could about the defect and found out that it was associated with DiGeoerge Syndrome. It was hard for Annalee to think that her baby could face life threatening trials. The whole family began to pray and fast for her. Annalee found out she was having a girl and decided pretty early on that she would name her Molly Rose. We prayed for Molly by name. Annalee got a priesthood blessing the night she found out the extent of Molly's heart defect. All of the siblings spouses and cousins were there and we heard Molly's name in that blessing for the first time. It was very very spiritual. All of our hearts were softened and our love poured out to Annalee and James and their little family.
Baby shower for Annalee at Cafe Rio. Al set up Molly's tiny crib in the restaurant!

As time went on in Annalee's pregnancy, things went so smoothly. In utero, Molly was thriving. She was growing well and had a strong kick and a great heartbeat. The doctors told Annalee that once Molly took her first breath, things could change. She would not survive without immediate surgery. Doctors have a way of telling you the worst case scenarios and somehow, that it is the main thing you think about! In my mind, Molly would be lucky to survive birth. Annalee chose the date of Molly's induction opting to wait till the very last available day to keep Molly safe in her belly as long as possible. In case Molly didn't survive the birth, Annalee asked me to be there to take as many photos as I could. Molly was scheduled to be born on Monday, February 24th. That weekend we had a lot of family time to keep Annalee and James' minds occupied. I thought about wanting to watch Annalee's belly, just to see a kick or some movement so that I could witness little Molly in her element. Annalee told Denise that through her prayers, she could feel Heavenly Father giver her the strength to take on this challenge. It was like a "come what may" moment.

 Sunday night Annalee and James each got a preisthood blessing. The blessings talked about giving comfort and being strong. I explained to my kids why we were doing all of this. I told them the severity of Molly's condition and that they needed to keep her in their prayers. Every single one of the cousins seemed to have a strong faith that everything was going to be okay. Noah was sure Heavenly Father intended for Molly to pull through this. I would get weepy thinking of all of this and worrying about Molly and James and Annalee. I found myself relying on the faith of the kids to get me through. Noah told Annalee that he talked about Molly a few times at school. Once with his teacher and once with some friends. The friends decided they would all say a prayer right then and there for Molly. Annalee was very touched. TK is taking a class at BYU from a distinguished professor of religion named Dr. Parry. The day Annalee was giving birth, TK was supposed to be in his class but was excused to attend the birth. Dr. Parry had the whole class kneel down and pray for Annalee and Molly. We chuckle, "only at BYU, ha ha!" but it really was special. It felt powerful to have so many minds and hearts on Molly. We fasted and prayed so sincerely as a family for her. The kids would ask why we were crying in the prayer and I told them that when you are pleading with Heavenly Father, you feel the spirit so strong that it makes you cry. You have this humility that you are begging him for help.

As Monday came, Annalee got to the hospital early because she had actually been having contractions all night. She labored comfortably after her epidural. She was amazed that the contractions weren't painful but she could still feel her feet. When it came time to push, Annalee could actually feel that urge too. She knew it was time. I had never had that with my epidurals. As Annalee pushed through  the contractions it was a tense time. Annalee was in a lot of pain and she could feel a lot with the birth.We were all cheering her on. The nurse got right in Annalee's face to help her focus. I was sobbing, It was hard to see someone I care about int that pain. Then as Molly's head started coming into view I yelled, "she's here!!" in hopes that would alleviate Annalee's pain! Molly came out a great color and was "screaming, crying, and fighting" as the nurse said. That alone was the answer to many many prayers. Molly looked amazing! As was planned, Molly was passed through the special window from the delivery room to the ICU where she was examined and put on an IV of meds to help her heart.
Molly immediately after birth: kicking, screaming and fighting!:)

 Perfect little angel

In the days following, Molly was at Primary Children's while Annalee recovered at the adjoining University Hospital. Molly had an IV and was given tests and being monitored. She was able to nurse and was doing well. As test results came back, Molly's heart still had not grown in certain spots to ease the surgery. She also tested positive for DiGeorge Syndrome. Molly was scheduled for heart surgery to fix the hole in her hear and repair the interrupted arch. Annalee said that it somehow made her feel btter that the doctor said surgery was her only chance of survival. it made Annalee feel less bad about putting Molly through all this. Annalee also mentioned the pain she felt in delivery was meant to be. I need to ask her why, but I'm thinking she meant so that her and Molly could fight together for her precious life.

In the mean time, James had been doing all that he could to help JJ and Madi feel loved and secure. He was taking them to the zoo, bringing them to the playroom, and keeping their lives full of fun and happiness. We tried to get them together with their cousins as much as possible. Jason and Jennie kept them over for two nights in a row. It felt so good to see everyone pitch in to help JJ and Madi. I had all sorts of memories come back to me of times friends and family members would take denise and I out to get our minds off our mom when she was sick. You never forget that kindness and those tender mercies.

JJ asked Noah to tie his shoe

Fun with Madi and JJ at Classic Skating

hanging out at the hospital

family text for blessing

The day of the surgery was super intense. I decided I would go to help with the kids, run errands, or just sit and support. I thought that if things didn't go well, I could take the kids and Al, TK, and Karen could help James and Annalee. When Annalee said that surgery on a heart was like cutting into soft butter, it just made me so freaked out at how fragile life is.

We all gathered in the waiting room as Annalee got almost hourly updates. TK would text the whole family as all updates came. The hardest two updates were 1) when they made the first incision and 2) when the doctor said they were wrapping up and wouldn't answer Annalee about details. She was worried they were unable to repair the long space of the arch and that they just finished quickly. These updates were given on a phone from the surgical room to the waiting room. The doctor came to the waiting room after over another hour or so and told Annalee that the surgery was a success!! He told her that it was everything they had expected and that they were able to patch up all places they needed to patch up. The blood flow was good and Molly did well! It was THE MOST AMAZING NEWS. You could almost see the weight being lifted off Annalee and James' shoulders.
post surgery family text
Molly right after surgery. Tiny girl with all those big gadgets.

A week now has passed since the surgery. Molly is two weeks old. She is off all machines and just has a feeding tube. She just got moved out of the cardiac ICU. She is doing fantastic. My prayers prior to Molly's birth were me begging Heavenly Father to help her "survive and thrive." We visited her two days ago and that was just what I saw. Molly's swelling had gone down, she had great color to her and she was sucking away on a pacifier. That little mouth working on that pacifier was the eptiomy of thriving at that moment. Our prayers now are just full of thank yous. Molly is a little miracle.
Annalee's latest Instagram post.