October 31, 2008

All kinds of pictures........

The girls getting some lovin' from Uncle Paul!
I bought this from Target, it was a return, and since the store doesn't actually sell them they had to mark it waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down! It is a $50+ item, that I paid 12 or so for. Aubrie loves it! I like the fact that it doesn't take up hardly any room when it isn't attached to the table, and even when it is you can still get around it. It will hold her until she is abou 35 pounds, so hopefully we can use it for a while.
Wyatte was experimenting with ways to come down the slide!
Nevaeh enjoying the slide at Cowhorn.
Aubrie and her pumpkin!
This was taken on the bench on my mom's dock. I think it is one of the best pictures that I have taken of the three of them!!!
She loves the leaves!!!
Isn't she adorable!?!?!?!?!??!
Wyatte got to hold a bunny!!!
Nevaeh and her pumpkin from Cowhorn.
Nevaeh trying out a new look!!!
Wyatte all ready for Cubbies. He loves it. Loves memorizing his verses, and the fact that he is the only one in the family that gets to go. His little buddy Kian sits right next to him, so that is fun too!
Uncle Paul and Krislyn came with us to visit Grandma Margaret.
Great Grandma Margaret and Aubrie! They sat together for a while before Aubrie got upset and wanted to get down!
Aubrie loves the walker! I actually got a picture of her waving at me! She can kinda do it when she wants to!!! She loves the fact that she can feed herself when she is in here! She doesn't have to wait for me to put some in her mouth!!!

October 29, 2008

Proof that God does miracles...

I know that this is a long post, but I pray that for those of you that haven't been glued to the MckMama blog on my blog ticker that you will read this whole post and see what God has done and is doing in this little baby's life! IT IS TOTALLY AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!


Big Mac, MckNugget and Small Fry joyfully announce that they now have another brother!!

Our long-awaited little MckMuffin has finally arrived...

entered the world this sunny fall morning
at 10:19 am, CST
weighing 6 pounds, 10 ounces
and measuring 19 inches long

As you can imagine, there is a lot going on here at the hospital. Please thank God with us that little Stlellan is here and be in prayer for these first hours of his precious life.
Align Center
The NICU attended the birth--which went very smoothly--and Stellan is with the NICU team now. MckMama is recovering and, in spite of a pretty low blood pressure, is feeling well. She has seen Stellan only briefly, but Prince Charming has been back and forth between her and baby Stellan. When she is stable, she'll be wheeled on her bed down to see their new baby.

Details on exactly how Stellan is doing as well as photos of the sweet baby will be forthcoming. But, let's just say that Stellan got a 9 and a 9 on his APGARS and the NICU team has yet to find a single thing wrong with him...

Happy birthday, sweet Stellan. You are God's miracle to us and you are finally here!!!!


Monday, July 28, 2008

be still and know that He is God

"I am so sorry to have to tell you such shitty news," the wonderful, kind perinatologist bent down, held my hand and put her other on my tummy. "I don't think your baby is going to make it. He is in heart failure and it's way too soon to take him out and give him a pacemaker. He would need to make it to 32 weeks and there is a 95% chance he will make it no where close to that point. I am so, so sorry to tell you this, but your sweet, sweet baby will probably be still born. I am so sorry."

Please pray for a miracle. Please pray for that 5% to belong to our baby. Be still and know that He is God.

I don't want to write this.

I have been staring at this blank post for over 45 minutes.

I still don't know what to write. I don't want to write a darned thing. I feel like I hate this stupid blog and I hate the fact that I have had to give good, then bad, then good, then bad news, then good news. I don't want to tell you bad news again. I feel like if I don't say it, maybe it won't be true. It's like a rollercoaster that I want to get off of. I feel like I don't want to drag you all on this ride with me. I don't want to write what I am about to write. I do not want this to be a pity party for me. I am tempted to turn the comments for this post off. But I won't; I know you will all have wonderfully, uplifting, supportive things to say to me that I would miss out on if I did. But I am still tempted. Because this sucks and I don't want to write this.

But I am going to. I am going to write it because we are going to need the support. I am going to write it, even if writing it makes it seem more real. The fact is, this is real, and I am going to have to deal with it and I am going to need support so I can keep relying solely on God. I am going to write it, eve though it sucks.

MckMuffin has almost complete heart block. And mild bradycardia. These two together are nearly always fatal in an unborn baby.

This was discovered on the tests that were done on him a couple of hours ago. (I also had more EKGs and my ECHO cardiogram and am still waiting for the results of those.) The doctors are running a bunch of tests to see how/why our baby has heart block. It could have been brought on by the meds I am on; it could have been brought on by anti-bodies in my own body "attacking" the baby; it could just be the way God made him. The tests will either rule in our out the first two possibilities.

But heart block is not reversible. There is "nothing that can be done." MckMuffin will have, at least, advanced second-degree heart block for as long as he lives. There is no going back, and there is little that can be done to keep it from progressing, but the doctors will try what they can. First, they need to determine, if they can, why he has heart block. If they can, they can eliminate that factor and at least hope to stop the progression.

His heart block was not detected two weeks ago, but it is "highly likely" that he had it then. It is likely that is what led to his PAC's and likely what caused his tiny heart to go into tachycardia. Now that his heart has slowed down (too much, actually, and his is in what is known as bradycardia....too slow of a heart beat), and a thorough scan could be done, the heart block was seen.

Heart block is when the atria, which are supposed to control the beating of the heart, are not getting the message to the ventricles, who do the pumping of the blood to the rest of the body.

MckMuffin's heart block is nearly complete. Yet, every now and then, the ventricles do get the message from the atria. But, mostly they don't. They are beating almost completely independently. If the ventricles keep beating independently, and beating strong and fast, MckMuffin will survive the pregnancy. If they get slower and slower--which is often the case as heart block progresses--he will not survive.

The fact that MckMuffin is just shy of 24 weeks along is not in his favor. The doctors who met with me told me that "this will be a very difficult case to decide upon a treatment." They are, as I type this, consulting with other specialists about what to do. Steroids have been known to sometimes help with the halting of the progression of heart block, but they pose serious risks to the baby, as the doctors told me. "Neurological damage and...other not-so-good side effects," he told me. I have not yet thought to ask if taking MckMuffin out early will be an option. Outside the womb, a heart with heart block with bradycardia can be helped with a pacemaker.

I am on my knees crying and begging you to pray for us. Do not pity me, though. I am in the hands of our Father! I trust Him and He is good! But please, please pray for wisdom for the doctors, to decide upon what to do for MckMuffin. Please, please pray that MckMuffin's ventricles would start beating well on their own, since they are not getting much help from the atria. Please, please pray for me that I would cling to Jesus. Please, please pray for Prince Charming, that he would do the same. He does not handle stress like I do and, to be honest, I do not know exactly where he is at with this, but I know that this is hitting him hard and not coming at an easy time for us, anyway.

And, please, please, know that even now, God is good!!!

October 28, 2008

Family Fun Magazine!

So I finally got time to read my Family Fun Magazine, and it was full of some GREAT things to do with the kiddos for Thanksgiving/Fall. I must have missed the Halloween one, but that is ok with me! The kids get dressed up and Trick or Treat at a couple family members homes, but we don't really go all out like some people can...

Anyways, on page 12 in the Family Fun was an article about them taking the magazine digital! You can view the whole magazine online!!! It is totally awesome! I can "digitally" clip the articles that I want to keep instead of ripping the whole magazine apart! This way I don't have a thousand different pages floating around the house until I take time to put them in my file thing!!! I AM SUPER EXCITED ABOUT THIS!!! So for those of you that might get excited about this like I am, here is the link to go to There are a bunch of other magazines that are on there, I think you can look at some of them for free, or at least some pages of them. You can sign up to just view them online, or to get them delivered to your door too. So just thought I would share that!

Yes, I know you all want to see pics of the kids and not read about my magazine findings, so I am going to let you know that I am working on a couple of posts with pics in them! Just taking me a lot longer that I thought to get them up! Look for them soon!!!

October 27, 2008

Eight Great Things...

Eight favorite TV shows
1. One Tree Hill
2. CSI
3. Jon & Kate Plus 8
4. 17 kids and counting
5. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
6. Biggest Loser
7. Tigger Woods golf games!!!
8. The Backyardigans

Eight favorite restaurants:
1. Fazolli's
2. Pizza Hut
3. New China
4. Subway
5. I don't eat out much besides fast food restaurants, and I don't really like them so I am going to skip the rest of this one......

Eight things I did yesterday:
1. Play Nerts with two of my younger brothers
2. Skip church because I was sick
3. Made split pea soup
4. Did about 8 loads of laundry
5. Packed up more clothes that are two small/too summery for the kids
6. Wished I was taking a nap
7. Watched Fool's Gold
8. Stayed up WAY too late!

Eight things I love about the Fall:
1. The hot humid days of summer are over
2. It is still warm enough to enjoy the sun though!
3. Thanksgiving
4. Autumn colors
5. MUMS starts again!
6. Pumpkin patches
7. You can bake with out overheating the house!
8. Fresh venison

Eight things I am looking forward to:
1. Christmas
2. Phil coming home!
3. Snow
4. Wyatte's birthday
5. BED TIME!!!
6. Moving into our "new" house!
7. When Aubrie can talk! (I know, as soon as she does I am going to regret saying it though right!)
8. The day that we don't have to worry about money soooo much

Eight things on my wish list
1. A job for John
2. Wyatte, Nevaeh and Aubrie to be great friends as they grow up
3. That someday I can get over my dad's new marriage...
4. To get back down close to the weight I was when I moved to Arizona...
5. A trip to Hawaii (we are planning one for our 10th wedding anniversary if anyone wants to come!!!)
6. A cleaning fairy!
7. That I get my two oldest out of pull ups.
8. That our Jeep would sell

Eight people I tag:
Anyone who really wants to take the time to do this!!!

October 22, 2008

prayers again...

John got laid off again. He was working construction and one of the houses that they were going to do fell through, so they don't have anything to do. So please pray that something will come up so that we can afford life. We are moving into John's parents house in the next couple of weeks, and then will have the expenses of rent, heat, gas for the stove, electricity, and phone again. We have not done very well saving money while living with mom, and now are probably going to pay the price. Hopefully something will come up for John, but I am most likely going to have to go back to work too. So that means finding someone who can watch the kids again...

October 18, 2008

Just another recipe!!!

Chicken and Dumplings

This is one of my favorite recipes, taken from an episode of Semi-Homemade with Sandra Lee. Hope you enjoy!!!

  • 1 whole store-bought roast chicken (about 2 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 to 1 onion, chopped
  • 6 cans (14 ounces) chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 can of biscuits (pillsbury, or store bought kind...)
  • 1 can (10.5 ounces) condensed chicken gravy


Remove skin from chicken and shred meat into large pieces. Set aside.

In a small frying pan, add vegetable oil and heat over medium heat. When oil is hot, add chopped onions and saute until soft.

In a large pot or Dutch oven, add broth, poultry seasoning, salt, pepper, carrots, celery, and sauteed onions. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer for about 10 minutes to soften vegetables, and then add shredded chicken. Continue to simmer while making dumplings.

While stew is simmering, prepare dumplings. Open can and remove biscuits. On a lightly floured surface, roll each biscuit to 1/4-inch thick. With a knife, cut each biscuit into 4 pie-pieces. Set aside.

Skim surface for any scum that has risen to top. Stir in chicken gravy.

With the stew still simmering over low heat, stir in dumplings a few at a time. Once all dumplings are in to pot, cover with a tight fitting lid and cook for 10 minutes.

Ladle into bowls and serve piping hot.

I love this because you can kinda change the flavor of the recipe by buying a different flavor rotisserie chicken from the deli! I have never tried this with a chicken not from the deli, but I am sure it would work just as good! Leftovers are even better than the original!!! Enjoy!

Forgotten Chicken or Pork Chops

*****My family used to have this all the time when I was still living at home, and it is still one of my favorite meals. It is easy because you can through it in the oven before you leave for church and when you come home it is done! Is pretty easy to through together on a weeknight when you have a ton going on too! Thought I would share it with those of you that read... Pass it on!!!

1 chicken, cut up (or as many pieces of pork chop or chicken as you can fit in the pan!)
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
2 cans cream of WHATEVER soup (mushroom, chicken, celery...)
2 cups uncooked rice
2 cans water (or milk, the milk makes it a little creamier...) try one of each!!!

Place chicken in bottom of roaster or casserole dish. Sprinkle with dry soup mix. Pour 2 cups of rice over this, set aside. Mix 2 cans water with 2 cans chicken soup. Pour over chicken and rice. Cover tightly. Bake in 350 degree oven for 2 hours, or 275 for 3 hours. Do not lift cover until done.

******Ok, so I copied this recipe off of a website, and thought it was the same as ours, but...

We put the liquid and soup in first and make sure it is mixed well. Then add the rice and make sure that is mixed in well, then lay the chicken or pork on top of the rice and soup mix. The sprinkle the onion mix on top of that. We bake our in a roaster pan, but my aunt does hers in a 9 X 13 pan, covered with tin foil. MAKE SURE YOU DON'T PEAK!!! Not totally sure why that is important, but it is!!!


October 17, 2008

Raking Leaves

Wyatte was making a "snow angel"!!!



Can you find him!?!?!?!?

Wyatte found some mushrooms while we were raking. He loves to be outside, I might have a woodsman on my hands!

Helping Grandma pull the tarp.

Playing peek a boo in the blankets hanging on the line.

Isn't she soooo cute! She has a ton of fun!!!

Wyatte was hitting the tree and making the leaves fall down himself. Oh to be 3 again!

Aubrie watching us all work!

Wyatte took at breather with an apple from Grandma Kris' tree!

Nevaeh enjoying an apple after we were done raking.

Aubrie and I trying a back carry! I loved it! She loved it! Now I just need to make sure that I am doing it right! I got to rake and everything with her like this!


Yesterday Wyatte asked me if he could help me make a cake. I told him sure, looked around for a cake mix and only found carrot and spice cake mixes--which I know the kids don't really like--then on the top shelf of the stairs...(Yes for those of you that haven't ever been in my mom's house, these are the underside of her stairs. She lives in a three story house, the underside of the stairs in the basement is a coat closet of sorts. These are the stairs that lead to the third story! My dad built these in to hold all the kitchen stuff that we didn't have room for because we have a pretty small kitchen here. He did that almost right after we moved in. I think it was one of the first things that he did, along with building my bedroom, but we were talking about the stairs!!!)

Anyways, on the top shelf there was a white cake mix! So Wyatte and Nevaeh and I made the cake. I had already decided that it was going to be a jello cake and asked Wyatte what color jello he wanted to use. He said purple, and luckily we had some grape jello in the cupboard. While the kids were napping I pulled the cake out of the oven, poured the jello on and stuck it in the fridge! NUM!!!

Kirk (my brother) has been wanting "Nibbles" for a long time, but didn't think that we had everything in the house to make them. Well mom dug around yesterday and found it all. So this morning Kirk got that all made up (oyster crackers with dry ranch dressing mix, oil and a few other things) They are kinda like goldfish crackers only not cheddar flavored and not shaped like a fish!!! So we have cake and nibbles!!!

Mom had a bunch of venison ground up and found a recipe for summer sausage that she wanted to try, so that is cooking in the oven right now as I type! So now we are up to cake, summer sausage and nibbles!!!

I made some pumpkin bars for our young marrieds group last Friday and made WAY too much frosting for it, found a couple extra cans of pumpkin on the stairs and so, tonight probably we are going to have pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting! LOTS OF SNACKS!!!

OH and Uncle Paul is coming home today from college for the weekend!!!!!!!!!!!! YEAH FOR US!!!

October 15, 2008

October 13, 2008


enjoying some time with Grandma Linda

first picture of her sitting up

too much sun at McDonald's!

smiling pretty for the camera!

Mommy was trying to get a picture of her first tooth, but I don't think you can see it!!!

just out of the tub!!!

trying sooo hard to stand up! She did after this, but I was too nervous to be far enough away to take a picture!!!

enjoying her time in the johnny jump up

getting some time outside!

standing up at Grandma and Grandpa Hoard's

smiling at the pretty girl in the mirror at our ECFE class.

Aubrie and Mommy last Thursday at the Grand Rapids Fire Hall, we were waiting for Wyatte and Nevaeh to get off the fire truck they got to ride!!!

My baby is 7 months old today. Scary how fast the time flies. Does it ever slow down?

She is crawling all the time now, she doesn't scoot at all anymore hardly. She has started pulling herself up on the furniture. She loves to stand. If you hold her hands and walk behind her she will walk for quite a while. She loves to eat food. Applesauce, sweet potatoes, carrots, and more that I can't remember. She just started eating the Gerber snacks that melt in her mouth and she loves them. I break them into 3 pieces because she can eat them sooo fast!!! This way they last longer! She will cuddle with me now, but only when she is very tired. She loves to be held while you are cooking. She loves to be in the johnny-jump-up. She loves the water, loves to be in the tub. She hates to have her hair washed. She hates sitting still long enough to get dressed. She still hates the pacifiers, but loves her thumb. (Funny story about that in a little bit!) She doesn't like wearing a hat, or a coat for that matter. She doesn't like it when Mom (me) walks around, or by her with out picking her up. She loves to be under the table. She isn't scared of the vacuum cleaner at all! She still loves to eat paper! She will pick up anything and put it in her mouth. I could go on and on and on about her. Can't imagine she is only 5 months away from her first birthday.

On to my funny story!!! A while back, (when we were still in the camper...) Aubrie was done nursing, she was pj'ed up, she had a dry diaper, she didn't want to sleep with John and I, so I laid her on the bed that I had made up for her out there. And she was still crying. I was going to let her cry it out, but couldn't stand it any more (it had only been about 2 minutes!!!) I walked over there to snuggle with her or talk to her to get her to relax enough to fall asleep. Well, I noticed that her pj sleeve was over her thumb and she was trying to suck it. So I pulled the sleeve up so that her hand was out, she put her thumb in her mouth and was asleep in seconds! John couldn't believe that all she was crying about was the fact that she couldn't get her thumb in her mouth! It was pretty funny to us!

I mentioned to the doctor the other day that she sucked it and wanted to know when I should start discouraging it. She told me not to worry about it. Most kids quit on their own. I worry about it a little because if you know me from when I was younger, I sucked me until I was 11 or 12 I think. Granted only to put my self to sleep or when I was scared, but I did end up needing braces. Oh well, if it comes to that, then braces it will be!

At Aubrie's 6 month check-up, yes it was a few weeks late, but hey... She was 16 pounds 4 ounces, and 27 inches long. So she hasn't quite doubled her weight yet, but the doctor wasn't worried (she is in about the 50th percentile...). Aubrie got another round of shots, and I think they bothered her more this time because she is more mobile, but we survived the couple of cranky days. Lots more TLC!!!