Sunday, December 29, 2013

Saying goodbye to 2013 and hello to new opportunities!

As 2013 comes to an end, I thought it would be a good time to give an update on the babies and our upcoming move. Everything has been so busy with all the holiday festivities. As much fun as they are, I will have a lot less to do now that they are over. I am sure the move will keep us plenty busy though. Its very surreal, this whole move, and honestly I have gone from being scared to being very excited! I know it is a huge change but I'm really looking forward to continuing our journey in Virgina.

2013 has been another amazing year for our family. We started off a little rocky with both Georgia and Mickey spending some time in the hospital with RSV and Pneumonia, but they are little fighters like always and beat it. Now they are better than ever.

On the professional side, I had new opportunities to learn and grow in my career with Club Med. It will be so hard for me to let go of that part of my life when we move, but so wonderful to focus on my most important job, being a mommy and focusing all my time and energy on my three miracles. I will truly miss so many people at work though and being a part of that team. On a personal side, this year I got to take a trip with Christina to Club Med in Florida, a much needed girls trip, and Tommy and I got to visit Cancun. We got to tour the Mayan ruins, learn about the people and the culture, swim in underground caves, zip line over crocodile infested lagoons and snorkel with the fishies. The margaritas and sunsets weren't bad either.

In May, Tommy finished his Doctorate degree earning himself the title Dr. Comer.  I still cant believe I am married to a doctor. Hee Hee. I am so proud of him. In August I had to have another surgery but am feeling much better now and much more myself. No pain, no gain I guess. I hate that I had to go through it and how difficult it is on Tommy when I do, but am healthy now and that's all that matters.

This year the babies turned two years old and they have made the most progress of us all. This time last year, Georgia and Jo were still crawling. In fact Georgia didn't start walking until April but now she is a pro. They are running all over this house, climbing on the furniture, pushing each other and us out of the way. Just when we think the house is toddler proof they learn to get into something else. They have recently learned how to open doors! All three of them have become very good at expressing themselves. We know when they need something or want something and for the most part what that is. They have all started speech therapy and we can already tell a big difference. Georgia says the most words and puts the two words together a lot. Sometimes she speaks for the other two even though they are able to say the same things. Jolynne is quiet but you know she knows what to do, she just likes to be defiant and talk when she wants, not when we want her too. Mickey has full on conversations with us and himself but he still struggles with the words. He is getting better though and know someday, he will be the chatterbox. Their new favorite activity is having me read to them. They love books and sometimes could care less about all the other toys. Its a great way for them to learn. I am really excited to take them places in our new city, read to them and teach them new words, and watch them continue to learn and grow. They are amazing to me in every way possible. I am sure I am forgetting a lot here, which is why I need to start blogging more often so I don't forget to note all the new little things they do every day.

We are finally under contract on our house and the appraisal has gone through, which is a huge relief. The next step is the home inspection which is scheduled for Friday. We are hoping all goes well and nothing too major comes up. While the home inspection is taking place, Tommy and I will actually be on our way to Charlottesville to look at homes. We are so excited to have found a few we think look nice and cant wait to explore Charlottesville. It is supposed to be snowing when we get there. Eeeek. I have really tried to stock up on sweaters the last couple weeks. Its not something I have really needed in Arizona.

When we get back, I will still have two more weeks of work, but Tommy starts his new job on January 13, so he will be in Virginia that week and we will be here. It will likely be that way for two weeks. Our tentative plan is to actually leave together as a family for Charlottesville on February 1st. We plan to stop in Amarillo, Tulsa, and Nashville if the weather cooperates and are hoping to see a few friends and family along the way.

So, as I said, it is still kind of surreal and hard to believe we are actually moving. Lots of thoughts swimming in my head all day, every day. I think leaving my mom will be the hardest part of it all but am thankful for modern technology and things like face time. We also learned with the new SMART TVs, you can actually buy a camera for it and Skype on the TV. Even though we are excited about this next adventure on our lives, we will miss so many things about Arizona. It will always be home to us. So, as we say goodbye to 2013 and to Arizona, we will hold onto all the wonderful memories and people here in our hearts and visit often. We will spend January cherishing the time we have left here with our friends and family before we move, starting with our trip to Pinetop tomorrow.

Thanks to everyone that continues to follow this blog and our journey. The adventure will continue in 2014 with lots of new stories and updates to share. Until then, Happy New Year to all our friends and family near and far. Wishing each and everyone of you health, happiness, and love in 2014.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Next Chapter Begins...

The last couple weeks have been very exciting and yet, so emotional. I am so proud of my husband, who last week accepted a new position of VP of Human Resources for a successful, growing organization in Charlottesville, Virginia. At 31 years old, he will be a VP, and it really is amazing how much he has accomplished at his age. Obtaining his doctorate earlier this year and now this. I know I have said it before, but I am a very lucky girl.

With his new job, that means we will be making the move to Virginia early next year to start a new chapter in our lives. I will have the opportunity to stay home with the babies for awhile and possibly go back to school, something I never imagined I would be able to do. Its such an important time in the babies lives and their development and I am so excited to be able to spend this time them before they start school in a couple years. As everyone always tells me, you will never get this time back. They will never be this age again and they are growing so fast.  From what I read, Charlottesville offers a fairly laid back lifestyle. Its not a big city, but its not a small town either. I am looking forward to a slightly slower pace of life and even the chance to experience all 4 seasons again.

Of course, this change is very scary as well. My eyes well up with tears when I think of all the goodbyes ahead. We will be leaving our entire support system, my mom, my sister, my nephew, all our friends, our nanny, and my work family will all be tough for me to leave. So many people we love and so many friendships we treasure. We have built a good life here in Phoenix and even though this move is the best thing for our family, a part of us will always be here in Arizona.

My last day at Club Med is January 17th and Tommy starts his new job the week before. Between now and then we will be focused on getting this house sold, so we don't have to live apart for two long. The plan is hopefully to make the move in the start of February if all goes well. Tommy and I will be traveling to Charlottesville at some point to try and find a place to live.

 You can expect many more blog entries in the weeks and months to come, and even more once we move. Something else I look forward to is catching up on my writing. Lots to share with the world. I am so grateful we have been given this new opportunity for our family and am so proud of my husband. Prayers for our family are always appreciated as we make this big, exciting but scary leap across the country.

Someone at work sent me this quote and I loved it! So true!

"You never know what life is going to throw at you so don't be afraid to take a chance, because it might just be the best thing to ever happen to you!" -Abhishek Tiwari

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Two Year Old Triplets

Georgia Dawn   
Born: 2lbs 9oz. and 15 inches long 
2 yrs: 32lbs 2oz. and 31 inches long

Jolynne Marie 
Born: 2lbs 6oz. and 14 inches long
2 yrs: 31lbs 2oz. and 31 inches long

Mickey Aaron 
Born: 2lbs 11oz. and 15.5 inches long
2 yrs: 28lbs 8oz. and 32 inches long

Well, it happened. My babies are officially two years old. Everyone was right, they really do grow so fast. Their birthday was such a special day filled with love, laughter and chocolate! The day started with the annual walk to defeat ALS, in memory of their Papa. Then we ended the day with a costume birthday party. I don't think we have ever had that many people in this house. I was going non stop and I know I didn't get to visit with everyone the way I would have liked to but I felt like I was running in circles trying to remember everything. Even still, I forgot some things, like to hand out party favor bags to the kids. My husband and I joke that we are so bad at throwing kids birthday party's. Last year I took both sets of keys to their party in Queen Creek so guess who was without a ride to their own party? My babies. Someday we will figure it out though. I made all the food myself this time. Thank you Pinterest! There was a pumpkin cheese ball, pumpkin dip inside a carved pumpkin, and spooky spider taco dip. Yum. I'm glad I got a bite or two in before it was gone. I made smores cupcakes, chocolate peanut butter cupcakes and chocolate pumpkin kiss cookies. The babies (toddlers) did great. They were a little shy at first but warmed up after after a few minutes as usual. Opening presents was interesting. They were so overwhelmed. I could not keep their focus. Once the first toy was unwrapped they were obsessed with it. It was so much fun though!

On Monday we had their two year check ups. Overall everyone is doing fantastic. All my babies are a little on the short side though. Less than 3 percentile for their height. The doctor said it could be just them and they will grow later. She also said sometimes preemies just turn out shorter. Their weights are so good, otherwise she said it would be considered failure to thrive. They are chunky monkeys. 95th percentile for weights on the girls.  We are going to take them back in 6 months to see if they have grown. If not, they can run some tests to see if there is something contributing to why they are not growing in length.  We were also told to stop giving them juice because it is too much sugar and stay away from carbs. Its tough because we were giving them a lot of fish sticks and chicken nuggets, grilled cheese. You know the easy stuff to make after a long day at work but also not very healthy. The doctor told us to feed them whatever we eat and we did not think that would be a problem since they don't seem like picky eaters. We were wrong. Every night this week we have given them what we eat and they are not eating it. They are hiding it in the sides of their high chairs, throwing it on the floor for Pepper to eat. Even putting it in their mouths and spitting it out. She told us not to make special meals for them though so if they don't eat it, that's all they get. If they are really hungry, they will eat she says. And Georgia does, even though she doesn't like it, she will slowly eat all her food with a grimace on her face. That girl loves to eat.

Mickey is still sounding wheezy when he exerts himself, so we are using these breathing treatments twice a day to get through the flu season. Its preventative so that if he does get sick hopefully it won't be as bad. Of course two days after their check up he somehow got an ear infection but luckily that's all. Mickey and Georgia have to go back to the cardiologist to check their hearts as a follow up. I am confidant all will be ok there. We also have to follow up with Jolynne's surgeon to make sure she hasn't developed a hernia or anything where she had her surgery. I am confidant that will be fine as well.

Last but not least we need to have them evaluated for their speech. I am fairly certain they are delayed in this area, especially Mickey but all of them to some extent. The girls can say about twenty or so words and they repeat after us but they are not putting words together. I don't think Mickey has twenty words. They may just need a little help and I am ok with that.

These days they are really starting to show more and more of their personalities. Georgia is a bit of a drama queen. She is very sensitive and gets upset easily and pouts and wants to be held over the tiniest of things. I secretly love to hold her though and make it all better. Although we do not baby any of them. Sometimes they have to get over it without us. Mickey is a big goof ball. He is so silly and loves attention. He will do anything for applause. Jolynne is one tough cookie. She doesn't even seem phased when she gets hurt sometimes. She will hold back the tears. She also is an explorer. I will find her crawling underneath tables and finding the littlest piece of fuzz or random things on the floor. I don't know how she sees them. Someday I swear she is going to bring me a spider or a dead rat and I am going to scream!

We started potty training  and Jolynne is doing really well with that. She goes every time. Mickey goes at least once a day and Georgia hardly at all. We are not rushing it though. Just getting them familiar with what it is at this point. I am guessing we will switch to toddler beds when we move. That makes sense to me. Another few months. It would be tough to do in their room now. The closet is open and only covered by curtains so i imagine myself walking in their room in the morning and finding all their clothes off the hangers and on the floors.

We are able to do more stuff with them now that it is not so hot. Mickey will still run off so we have to be careful. The wagon is getting so heavy to pull as you can imagine. I look forward to the day when they stick close by us and we don't have to worry about them running off and chasing them. Until then we will have to keep using the wagon.

Every day I think the babies say new words and learn new things. They are starting to recognize characters now, like when they see Elmo they say, "Melmo!" Or when Mickey Mouse Clubhouse comes on they say "toodle". It is so stinking cute.They understand everything we say too so we have to be so careful. I love cuddling with them at night before they go to bed and reading them stories. I love coming home from work to three little two year olds and watching them fight over me. Well, I don't like watching them fight but it is kinda cute when they all try to get on my lap at the same time. The girls  are very possessive and very competitive with each other. Sometimes at night I sit back and just watch them and I still can't believe they are mine and this is happening to me. This beautiful family my husband and I have created. No, its not always easy, its really hard some days, but man I wouldn't change it for the world. There were so many times we didn't know if we would ever have all three home, if they would make it, and now they are so happy and healthy. Each of them so special and unique in their own ways. They may be triplets but they are not all the same. I can't imagine not having all three of them here and I realize it could have gone either way, especially for Jolynne. So, how fitting to move from their birthday month, and celebrating their life, into the month of Thanksgiving. We have so much to be thankful for.




PS: The number of pictures of each child depicts the level of cooperation while taking pictures :-)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

For Sale

It is with mixed emotions to make this announcement, but we’ve decided now is the time to sell our house. Our Ahwatukee home will be listed on Friday October 11. There are a variety of reasons behind this move. (1) The values of homes in Ahwatukee have climbed in 2013; (2) We simply need a bigger house; (3) Who knows how the current state of affairs in Washington will impact home prices; and (4) there are financial reasons for it.

We bought this home – our first home – in September 2009. We got married and had three beautiful children (about to turn 2 years old) while in this house. We’ve upgraded the kitchen, back yard, and the floors while living here.  This house was wonderful for us. We just out grew it. Right now the babies and their toys literally cover the living room. The backyard is full of cacti, making it difficult for them to move around freely – even with the pool fence up. We love the area we live in – the neighborhood, the central location, everything.

The house wasn’t without challenges. The backyard was a disaster when we bought it. The A/C unit somehow lasted 4 years on its last legs. We have the three tallest palm trees in the entire state, it seems, making it fun to get dependable people to trim them every spring. It sometimes felt like constant little maintenance…but I will miss it. We don’t expect the house to be active for long; it truly is “move-in ready” for any serious home buyers. Frankly, the one thing we never got to upgrading was the cabinets/counters in the bathrooms. Everything else we were able to tackle in our four years. Hopefully the next owner(s) enjoys it as much as we did.

Our plan is to stay at Kara’s mom’s house (Linda’s) for the rest of 2013 and save some money. Our grandiose plan is to be able to upgrade into a larger, possibly brand new home with a little more flexibility financially. By January 2014 we plan to decide on a new house or buying an existing one. Either way, we need a larger home where we have the space for three growing children (and space for Mom and Dad to keep their sanity) and some extra money for all the things that go along with it.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

How becoming a mom has changed me...

I would like to start by saying I am not writing this for anyone nor is directed at anyone. Most of my blogs are either updates on the babies or are internal reflections in response to someone or some change in my life that I think others may relate to.  I have been thinking a lot lately about how much I have changed since I became a mom. Some changes for the better and some changes, maybe debatable. I realize first of all that I have lost touch with many people in the last two years. Some friends that were actively in my life before the babies, I hardly speak to, and I recognize this is mostly my fault. I think of them often and I feel awful for not being there and not taking the time for them. I realize this may mean I am not as good of a friend as they thought I was. But yet I don’t feel awful enough to call them because I am exhausted. There are people I have also been meaning to meet in person after being connected on Facebook for some time but the truth is it’s hard to find the time. All my energy is spent on my three little ones, my husband, and my job and at the end of the day, I don’t have much left. There are a few treasured friendships I do have that I cannot lose. They are what keep me sane sometimes. They are the few people, aside from husband and my mom that I need in my life and I rarely see them as well. Weddings, baby showers and birthdays it seems, because that’s what happens when you become a mom I guess. Your friends, who were once your world as a young adult, are still important, but your children are your life. I am not sad about this because I know my friends understand as I understand them. I miss happy hour, A LOT! Trust me! But the time in my life for that has passed except in rare occasions. I do spend a lot of time on Facebook, admitting that is my connection to the outside world (away from work) and my way of sharing my greatest love and joy, my children, with other friends and family near and far.

I am also different when you are around me. Maybe I don’t remember things – I blame the pregnancy brain that never went away after I had the babies. Maybe I am not as focused as I used to be. It’s something I am consciously trying to work on. My mind drifts onto thoughts of my kids or what I need to take care of when I get home, or what I need to get done over the weekend. It’s not that I am not listening to you. It’s that I am multitasking in my mind. I may seem a little out of it, or stressed or a little uptight instead of as happy and carefree as I used to be. It’s because my husband and I have gone nonstop from the second we wake up and the days not over yet. There is no enjoying a cup of coffee before the day starts. That would mean getting up even earlier and we need our sleep and energy for the day ahead. So, I am sorry if I seem a little cranky sometimes. I assure you, it’s not you, it’s just part of me is still adjusting to becoming a mom and honestly, I am tired. Happy but still tired.

I wish I could say having children has made me more patient, but I think it’s the opposite. With triplets, the schedule is very important to being able to successfully make it through the day. So, I don’t have a lot of time for anything else, including traffic, long lines and/or waiting for our food to arrive when we eat out. If you stop to talk to me, please make it quick. I have short windows of time to get from point A to point B. Even when I am out and about on my own, it is usually when the babies are napping and I don’t have a lot of time to run my errands before they wake up.

The other changes are mostly good. I have an appreciation for and understanding for moms everywhere, no matter their situation, I especially have a greater appreciation and understanding for my mom. I try every day to not take anything for granted, my family, my home, my job. I kiss my kids and husband goodbye every morning when I leave for work and I take one more glance before I walk out the door because I know enough to know, you just never know in today’s world what the day may bring. I think I have become a little softer in some ways and a little stronger in others, more gray, and even though I have always been an emotional person who wears her heart on her sleeve, I cry at the silliest things that would not have phased me before.

I buy more clothes for my kids than I do for myself. When I go shopping, it’s not for me. We spend our money on diapers, potty chairs, hair bows, pj’s, new toys, books, dvds, and other misc. items. For this reason, we eat out less and less and maybe some things in the house have been neglected or even my wardrobe. The one thing I try not to neglect is my health – I need that!

I was fearless as a child, and a teenager, and now I am scared of everything. Spiders, heights, flying, the flu, and even of my babies sometimes. It’s scary to think I am responsible for three human lives and how all my actions now will shape and mold who they become and their happiness for the next 16 years at least. It’s scary to think of all the different things I have to protect them from without keeping them in a bubble. Even though I am a big scaredy cat though, I don’t let my fears keep me from living. I still get on airplanes, I still go places I know that spiders lurk, and I still take my babies out in public. I still take chances every day. Because I know that if you don’t take chances, you will miss out on a lot of things in life.

Although being a mom has changed me in a lot of ways, in other ways I am the same Kara I have always been. My husband and I believe very strongly it is important not to lose sight of ourselves and keep doing things we love. I like to have fun and I love my girlfriends. I love to write (obviously) and I love to travel. Wine tasting, a baseball game, or a day trip to Sedona, is still my most favorite way to spend a (kid free) afternoon. I am still a working girl, with career goals and am very ambitious. If you really need me, I will be there. I am still a daddy’s girl, even though my dad is in heaven and I still ask myself what he would tell me in certain situations. I still have to learn everything the hard way, and on my own and although I want to take others advice into consideration, I don’t want to be told what to do. Rarely do I learn from reading a book, but I am starting to learn from others who write blogs about their experiences, because being a mom is the hardest job I have ever had and even though I will ultimately do what I think is best for my children based our situation, I enjoy reading what other moms do and have done under similar circumstances. I feel like I have also developed some close friendships with women I might have never known, but because of Facebook and by listening to their stories and keeping up with their families through blogs or pictures, we are connected. These women have helped me in more ways than they know through their advice, their story and their support.

My life has changed so much since I had the babies. I couldn’t possibly put all of those changes in one blog entry but as I notice my relationships with others are also changing, growing or even in some cases fading; I needed to write about and acknowledge why. Because I am a mom now and that is what I will always be before anything else for the rest of my life and even after I am gone. I am just being honest. I do my best to be a good friend, daughter, wife, sister , and mother and sometimes it might not be good enough. But as long as it’s good enough for my children, that all that matters in the big scheme of things.  Sometimes, after the babies go to bed, I make the choice to sit back and be nothing and think about nothing.  I am not sorry so many things have changed because the truth is, I was never completely happy before my kids were here. There was always something missing from life, before I met my husband, and then before I met my kids. So, if I seem different to you, it’s because I am.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Recovery and our trip to the White Mountains

We just returned from our first family vacation where it was just the 5 of us. The last couple of trips we took as a family, we went with either family or friends. If all our trips are as nice as this one was, I cannot wait for many more.

First of all, I am still recovering from my surgery, which went pretty well for the most part. The biggest issue I am dealing with now is some numbness and pain in my top left leg which they say may be superficial nerve damage. I know it sounds crazy to have numbness and pain at the same time, but I don't know how else to describe it. It is supposed to resolve on its own so I am trying to be patient. I was pretty frustrated last week with this news as I was hoping to have less health problems and not more from the surgery, so I really hope it does get better or I will have to see a neurologist. More doctor appointments - Eck!

After laying around for over a week in the house I was getting a little cabin fever. It had consistently been around 110 degrees in Phoenix so I could not even go sit outside. Tommy of course is working and I couldn't lift the babies or really do much with them because it was too painful. The babies also had been cupped up inside for almost two weeks due to my surgery and the heat. Tommy was doing most of the work, dinner, laundry, baths etc. I am so lucky to have him help me through this. But needless to say we were all going a little stir crazy.

I thought why not relocate ourselves for a couple days to the white mountains of Arizona. We can rent a cabin, so we can do the same thing there as we are here, only in cooler temps and we can enjoy the outdoors. I thought the babies deserved to get out of the house and play outside, and Tommy and I could use a change of scenery, some relaxation away from reality for a couple days. Not that reality is that bad to begin with, but the surgery had definitely taken its toll on all of us I think. I know I am the one had surgery but it was hard on everyone.

We left Friday afternoon around the babies nap time. They did so well in the car. They slept for the first two hours of the ride. When they woke we were able to play a couple Baby Einstein DVDs for them to keep them happy until we got there. They never cried once the whole way there. We got to the cabin about 3:30pm. I was pretty sore at this point from sitting for 3.5 hours so I headed straight for the couch to put my legs up while Tommy unloaded the babies and the car. The babies immediately went exploring their new surroundings. The cabin was very beautiful, clean and built with knotty pine (I think that's what its called). We brought some of their toys as well, so they felt at home. Tommy went to the local grocery store to pick up a few steaks and some items we would need for the next couple days. He grilled that night, we had a nice family dinner, and the babies went to bed a little early. They became very fussy towards the end of the day. Jolynne even bit Georgia in the face. I know she will feel bad about this when she gets older, but right now she can be very mean to her brother and sister sometimes. She also loves to give the most kisses to everyone out of all three babies, so I don't know, she is just from one extreme to the next. After the babies were in bed we sat outside and enjoyed the night sky, and the sounds of the crickets. I was completely relaxed and I don't know why, this may sound dumb, but it was just easier to breathe there - maybe because it did not feel like I was sitting in an oven?

The next day we took it easy for the most part. I enjoyed laying around in the morning and watching the babies play. About mid morning we took them out front so they could explore. The girls especially liked to collect pine cones and tree bark. They had their own little collections. It was so awesome sitting there and watching them learn about the outside world. I feel somewhat like they have been deprived of this in Phoenix due to the temperature. We also have a lot of cactus in our backyard which makes it difficult to let them roam outside at home. Mickey just likes to run around in circles. The cabin was on a dirt road so we didn't have to worry about him running into a busy neighborhood street.

The sky's were starting to turn gray and we could tell rain was on its way, so we decided to take the babies to a local park called, Canyon Lakes Park. We found a playground where they could explore and go down the slides. Of course once again they were more interested in collecting tree bark and pine cones. I thought it might be good for me to walk a little. Every one keeps telling me that helps shorten recovery time after surgery and this park had lots of walking trails in the middle of tall, beautiful pine trees, wild flowers and next to a beautiful lake. It was so peaceful. There were benches throughout facing the lake so I could sit down and take a break if I needed to. I showed the babies what a dandelion was. They were mesmerized. Although Georgia tried to eat it.

We went back to the cabin for lunch and the babies went down for their nap. I put my feet up and for the next couple of hours Tommy and I watched football and snacked on my delicious artichoke dip, which he says gets better every time I make it. The rest of the day was more of the same, the babies played in the rain, and more resting and relaxing for me. We decided to go out to dinner that night so Tommy didn't have to cook. We went to Charlie Clark's and had the best cherry cobbler! Well, Jolynne was not crazy about it but Mickey couldn't get enough. He is definitely the sweets lover of the 3.

Everyone in Pinetop was so genuinely friendly to us. Whether we were on a walk, or at the restaurant, people were just so sweet. They didn't ask a bunch of questions but just complimented us on our family and our children. And not once the whole weekend did anyone try to take their picture, which was refreshing change.

The next morning I knew we had to leave but I really did not want to go. I delayed taking a shower as long as possible. I was perfectly happy laying on the couch, listening to the rain, and looking outside the window and at the tall, green trees. On our way out of town we stopped at Rainbow Lake to feed the ducks before we left. Georgia was crying and clinging to Tommy. She was so scared of them. Mickey was curious and wanted to get closer but the ducks didn't want to get closer to him. Jolynne was more interested in sticks and picking up everything on the ground. It was raining pretty good at this point so we decided to have some lunch and hit the road. One our way home, we literally drove through the clouds. It was crazy! I have flown through clouds before but never drove through them. It was kind of eery coming around the mountain with steep fall offs in the middle of the clouds.

We did make it home safely though and although I wish we could have stayed longer it is time for me to get back into a somewhat normal routine. I was once again very sore from the car ride so I need to remember that even though I might be feeling better my body is still not 100% and I shouldn't over do it. I am hoping to go back to work later this week if the doctors will let me and I am hoping this numbness and pain in my leg goes away soon. It is very weird to have a numb leg especially when I stand on it. I am hopeful that it will resolve and I can move forward with less pain than before the surgery, which was part of the point. To be healthy and pain free. I am looking forward to be able to exercise again and start getting back into shape. Due to the pain I was having it was really hard for me to do any of that for several months before the surgery.

I am also really looking forward to more family vacations where we can really just focus on each other rather than the business of every day life. I learned a lot about my babies this weekend and they learned a lot too. Its so amazing to watch them discover the world. They are starting to use a lot more words every day and they are very expressive. I know I say it a lot, but they just amaze me. Speaking of amazing, that is my husband. I couldn't have gotten through the last couple weeks and we could not have taken this trip without his willingness to do most of the most of the work himself. He continues to support me and make sacrifices for our family all the time. I am so grateful for him and more in love with him every day. Life is not always easy but I am so blessed to be going through it with Tommy, Georgia, Jolynne and Mickey. It makes the tough times a little less tough and it makes the good times, truly extraordinary.

Mickey loves to share everything he finds!
Collecting tree bark and pine cones - good times!

Our Cabin
Canyon Lake

This was on our way home, driving into the clouds...

Sunday, August 25, 2013


I created this blog to share updates on the babies and to share the journeys we go through as a family. I have captured many milestones here, celebrations and even challenges. I started this blog when I had only just found out I was pregnant with my angels. Now, they are approaching their 2nd year in life and I more amazed by them every day. There were times when I didn't know if all 3 would get to stay with us and they have come so far. More than ever, after losing my dad and watching the babies fight to live, I realize that our health is more important than anything. After all, without our health, what do we have? Prior to getting pregnant with the babies and before the blog, I struggled with a disease known as Endometriosis. I won't go into too much detail here but encourage you to click on the links below if you would like to learn more about it. It is a very misunderstood disease, and can go undiagnosed for years because it usually cannot be seen through ultrasounds or x-rays. Most people don't realize just how debilitating it can be. There is no cure, but luckily there is a way for women with endometriosis to get some relief, and that is through surgery. I had my first surgery in February 2010 after a year of testing, procedures and multiple ER visits, and after that surgery, for the first time in a long time, I felt free from the pain, like I could live a normal life again. Now, 3 and a half years later, I am scheduled for surgery again this Thursday. The doctor will excise the endometriosis from anywhere inside my body he may find it (again I am trying to not be too detailed here). It is possible it is on my intestines and a 50/50 chance it is on my appendix, so he will take that out. The thought of being put under anesthesia is honestly the scariest part for me, now that I have the babies. I feel pretty confident all will be ok, but I guess it would not be normal if I wasn't a little scared right? The reality is though, this disease makes me extremely fatigued and I cannot afford to be that way with 3 little ones and a full time job. It also can be so painful sometimes that I cannot stand up straight or get out of bed. And during those times, I cannot pick up babies or hold them close to me. Most importantly, endometriosis can lead to more serious health issues, including cancer, especially if it is left untreated.

I will be taking a couple weeks off from work to recover. My husband, bless his heart, will be taking care of me and the babies. I am not quite sure how I will sit still while at home. It will be hard to watch the babies and not be able to hold them but I am looking forward to the healing and the chance to rest which is hard to come by these days. Maybe I will have a chance to write more about the babies. It has been hard to find the time to write lately.

I wanted to share this in my blog because it is another challenge we will go through together as a family and I want to capture all the important moments, good and bad. Life is full of challenges and this is just another one that will bring us closer together and make us stronger. It will make me stronger. And when its done, I will feel better and be free from the pain again, for another few years I hope. When I think back to everything the babies went through to be alive, I know I can do this. They have taught me so much about what it means to be strong. I also know that this disease can be genetic and my daughters, unfortunately, have a higher chance of getting it. This breaks my heart. I hope that when they read this blog one day they see that sometimes you have go through things that are scary and hard to get to the good stuff and that as long as we support each other and love each other we will be ok. I choose to not to let this disease run my life. Yes, this sucks, no doubt about it, but it could always be worse, and I am so grateful that it is not. This week I will be hugging my babies tight, and trying not to let my fears get the best of me. I will go on after this and live happily ever after until the next challenge in our lives and learn what I can from this one.

If you would like to read more about endometriosis, please click on the links below:

Friday, June 14, 2013

19 Months

Time sure does fly when you are having fun. I am long overdue for an update on the babies, who are now 19 months old. They will be 20 months on June 26th. I cant believe they are almost 2 years old. They are doing great by the way. I know I post a lot of pictures on facebook so you can see them grow but I thought I would elaborate a little on their progress. Georgia, although she took her time started walking right at 18 months. Looking at her now you would think she has been walking forever. She is so fast already! Once she learns something she really goes with it. She has started to copy words we say, so Tommy is really having to be careful with his choice of words sometimes. LOL. She can say mama, thank you, apple, hooray, ball, hi, bye, boo, and several others. Jolynne can say a few words but not as many or as clearly as Georgia. She is really trying though. Mickey will say complete sentences. Trouble is they are in a baby language. he will go on and on about something while looking you straight in the eye but we have no idea what he is saying. All of them are really starting to pick things up like puzzles and blocks and shapes. Its all starting to click I think. Well, not for everything but for a lot of things. The phase they are in now is so hilarious. I love watching them and catching their silly expressions. All 3 love to dance and spin in circles. They like when i sing to them. That's the only time they will be quiet. And Jo claps every time I am done with a song, which is so sweet. Bath time has got to be their favorite time of day now. They love the water. Now if we can just keep them from falling and hitting their head when they try to stand. The girls are especially clingy when we are at home and we have people over. They cry and wont go near anyone other than me or Tommy. When we are in public, they are fine, but just don't like other people in the house I guess. Mickey is the life of the party and very much a ladies man as I think I have mentioned before. the biggest challenge right now is the fighting, especially between the girls. They fight over toys and over attention from us. They will hit each other, push each other and bite hard. We are working on getting this under control. It is tough sometimes though. We try and try to give each of them equal attention but they want it all, and don't understand why we cant give them that. I know it is just a phase and we will get past this just as we have every other obstacle. I know it is pretty normal.

Its getting a little easier to take the babies places, there is more stuff they enjoy and like to do. Knocking on wood, they have not been sick in awhile. Taking them out of day care has really helped. They are growing so fast too. The girls are already wearing size 2 Toddler and have been for a couple months.  Work for Tommy and I has been very busy and involved a lot of travel. That may be why the girls are so clingy. One of us is gone every week it seems. At the end of this month, Tommy and I are going to Cancun for a couple days. I wish we could take the babies but they are not old enough to enjoy it and quite honestly, its important for Tommy and I to spend some time with each other outside of normal every day life. We are very lucky we have the opportunity to do so thanks to our jobs and to my mom for watching the babies. I do look forward to more family vacations someday though. I cant wait to take the babies place and show them everything! Show them the world. I know I crammed a lot of updates into one small blog entry but I needed to catch up and I have less and less time to write lately it seems. Thanks to everyone who continues to follow the blog and keep up with us and our 3 little miracles. More updates and entries to come soon I hope.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Special Mothers Day Blog

This weekend we celebrate Mothers Day. But we also celebrate my Mother and her retirement. My mother is no ordinary woman and anyone who knows her will agree. Over the last couple days I have listened to teachers, students, friends, family and even strangers talk about my  mom and what she means to them. I have heard stories of inspiration, wisdom, compassion and leadership that come from one woman - my mother. Georgia, Jolynne and Mickey's grandmother. I watched the students pile in the multi-purpose room. They are laughing, they are teasing each other, some are clapping, some are making funny faces, but they are so amazing and my mom is responsible for all these kids. These kids and the teachers, our extended family for so many years. The teachers did the ABC's of Linda. Every letter of the alphabet and what it stood for that reminded them of my mom. Amazing, Caring,  Leader, Match Maker, Queen, Rock, etc. They kept referring her to the ROCK, the whole assembly. The cheerleaders did a cheer dance for her. Each grade level presented her with a gift and the students talked about her and thanked her. They played a video of memorable pictures  and more people talking about what she had meant in their lives, including Me, Tommy and the babies. And then all those kids, they sang to my mom, They called her a hero and they thanked her for everything she had done for them. Later that night I listened to her colleagues and her boss talk about the influence she had on their life and their career. They said she was more than that, but also a friend, someone they could count on. Her boss said the one school he never had to lose sleep over was hers. She received a letter from the co-founders of Imagine Schools stating she holds the record for the longest tenured principal at any Imagine School and reiterated the impact she had on the organization but most of all, the students and the parents.

My mom, she pours her heart and soul into these children and what she does. The babies, my sister, my nephew, and I are so lucky to have her as a Nana and a Mother. To watch these people who have been so incredibly touched by mom, I am in awe of her.

Now that I am a mom I realize how tough it is some days. How you put yourself aside every day and do what you need to for your kids. No matter how tired you are, or long you had to work that day, or how bad your head hurts, or your feet or even when your sick. Your kids need you. You don't get a day off most of the time. But you do it because you love your children more than anything and you would do anything for them. I've learned so much from my children in their short life. I look forward to every weekend because I know I will get to  be 100% devoted to them for two days. I can't take my eyes off of them. Their smiles, their personalities, they are growing so fast!

Today I awoke to breakfast in bed, and three little voices and eyes peaking up at me. This weekend, on mothers day, I reflect on how lucky I am to have to such an inspiring mother, and how lucky I am to be a mother of the three most beautiful miracles alive. I don't know how I got here most days. I never thought any of this would happen to me. And I am just so proud of my family. I love being a mom even in those stressful moments. I would take those moments over being without them any time. Nothing worth having is every easy, Its a lot of hard work, it sacrifices, but its so worth it.

Thank you mom for being such a wonderful role model to me, for loving me unconditionally and for being such a wonderful grandmother. We all have a lot to live up to.