Monday, April 21, 2014

Confession


Okay, I’m going to admit something here that I’m not proud of.  My husband is planning a golf trip in a couple of weeks and I’m very nervous about being at home alone with my two kids.  Especially now that we have the baby!  I could handle my four year old for the weekend.  But add a three month old into the mix and I’m just not sure I can do this!  I’m spoiled, okay?  My husband is a whole lot of help and I have gotten used to having him around.  He is leaving on a Thursday and not coming home till Sunday.  The weekend might not be so bad, but Friday is going to be difficult.  I will have to get up early enough to get all three of us ready, fed, and out the door.  I will have to go 20 miles south to drop the baby off with my sister, then 30 miles north to get me and the four year old where we need to be.  And hopefully I’ll make it to work by 7:45.  My mom has offered to come and spend Thursday night with me and I’m taking her up on it.  But the point is…

I feel bad that I’m not prepared for this.  I feel inadequate that I’m nervous about keeping my own children.  I am a mother of three – I’m supposed to be pretty good at this by now, right? 

Monday, April 14, 2014

My Latest Adventure...


I’m baaack!  I know I’ve been gone a while, and SO much has happened while I’ve been away.  My husband and I were blessed with another baby, a new little girl.  It was quite a journey, let me tell you!  The decision to try to get pregnant with our third child was not an easy one.  Had I been ten years younger and in better health, I wouldn’t have had to think twice.  But I was 40 with blood pressure issues and people in my situation (read age bracket) don’t have babies! 
 In June of 2012 we decided to try for a year and see what happened.  If, after a year, we still had no child, we would give it up.  I immediately began charting ovulation cycles and marking up my calendar.  After a few months, I began to get nervous.  I wondered if my age was going to be an issue.  We began seeing a fertility specialist who ran some tests on me and told me that I was actually in pretty good shape for someone who had just turned 41.  So we had my husband tested.  His tests didn’t fare as well.  Only about 1% of his little swimmers were shaped correctly.  It really made me wonder how we were able to get pregnant with our daughter after just 6 weeks, and that had only been 3 years earlier.  We began to call her our miracle child!  And I was hoping for just one more miracle. 
After getting news like that, I decided I needed to step it up a bit, especially since the months were flying by and our year would be up before I knew it.  So I began taking medication to up my ovulation.  After a few months, though, we still had no positive test.  We opted for an intrauterine insemination (IUI).  This is not quite as involved (or expensive) as IVF so we could try it a few times if necessary.  We did our first IUI in March of 2013 and it did not work for us.  While I was disappointed, I really didn’t let it get me down.  It was our first shot, after all.  I had convinced myself that our second IUI, scheduled for April, would be the one to seal the deal. 
Now, for those of you who have never experienced working with fertility clinics and inseminations, things are very structured and regulated based on your cycle, your ovulation, etc.  Things have to happen at a certain time, you have a certain window of time in which to work and if you miss that window, you must wait an entire month to try again (duh, but it’s more involved than just saying, “Oh, I’m fertile during these days.  Often, it comes down to a certain hour!). 
The process went like this: Around a certain time of the month of April I began taking daily ovulation tests.  When I got a positive reading, I had 12 hours to call my doctor and go in for a follicle scan to see how many eggs I may produce if any.  Once I saw through ultrasound that there were some possibilities, I then had 24 hours to give myself a shot in the stomach, and get to the other clinic 40 minutes away for the insemination.  I had to leave work in the middle of the day with very little explanation to my boss (I didn’t let everyone at work in on what I was doing) and take off the next day as well for the (hopeful) conception of my child.  My husband had to go through similar hoops at very short notice to make this happen.  That night I was so nervous but so excited! Though I was not fond of having to give myself an injection in the gut, I didn’t even squirm about it this time. 
The next morning, first thing, we drove to the clinic with anticipation.  My husband was called back to give his “deposit”.  It usually takes about an hour to “clean” the deposit, washing away all of the bad swimmers and leaving us with that 1% of strong possible offspring.  An hour had passed and I felt pretty sure they were going to call me back any minute when out of the blue the fire alarm begins sounding and they are rushing us out of the building.  Doctors and nurses were scrambling everywhere trying to move large containers of frozen embryos to safety.  It was a madhouse.  All I could think at the time was that I was glad I wasn’t in some paper gown in a compromising position when that alarm went off!  After waiting outside for what seemed like an eternity, the nurse finally informed us that we would not be allowed back into the building today, and therefore this month’s window was now closed.  I was devastated.  My husband and I went to lunch and I just sobbed openly in the restaurant.  It was April, and my year was over in May.  This was my next to last shot at a baby and it was wasted.  The nurse had told us to go home and try “often” all weekend long since I had the injection in my system, but considering we were only working with 1%, I was not getting my hopes up. 
 But our Lord works in mysterious ways.  The Thursday before Mother’s Day, having not even the slightest symptom of pregnancy, I decided to take a pregnancy test.  The faintest blue line appeared.  To be honest, I don’t even know for sure if it did appear or if I imagined it to be there because I’ve saved the test and the blue line is not there.  It was so faint, but I saw it.  I showed it to my husband and he couldn’t see it.  The next day I couldn’t stand the wait so I left work in the middle of the day, went and bought another test and did it in the bathroom here at the office.  POSITIVE!!!!  And now, we have our beautiful daughter, Landry.  The pregnancy and delivery, well that is a story for a different day.  She is here now, 13 weeks old and the sunshine of my life! 

So that’s what I’ve been doing!  Motherhood at 42, it’s different!  I’m loving every minute of it, but it’s different.  So I’m bringing you along for the ride.  A fortysomething working mom of 3…this is going to be quite the adventure!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I Dig You!

Favors?

Such an adorable idea for unique Valentines to send with kids to school.  Last year I searched EVERYWHERE for these white shovels and had no luck.  I found lots of "assorted colors" but no solid white ones.  I should have started early for this year. 

Pampered Chef Chicken Penne al Fresco

I am having  Pampered Chef party tomorrow night and I'm really excited!  I love Pampered Chef and I believe in their products.  Some of my favorite things in my kitchen came from one of their parties or a catalog order.  And, no, I'm not a sales rep.  I just love their stuff!!!

While thinking about this upcoming party, I started going through my recipes for dinner ideas.  I found this PC recipe for Chicken Penne al Fresco and made it last night for dinner.  It turned out so yummy! 

 Pampered Chef - Grilled Chicken Penne al Fresco
Picture from plainchicken.com




4 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups whole grape or cherry tomatoes

3 cups uncooked mezze penne pasta (or any tubular pasta)

3 cups chicken broth

¾ cup dry white wine such as Chardonnay

½ tsp each salt and pepper

1 ¼ cups lightly packed fresh basil leaves divided

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

2 cups diced grilled chicken breasts

 

Spray Deep Covered Baker with olive oil.  Add baker and tomatoes, cover and microwave 4-5 minutes or until tomatoes begin to burst, stirring after 2 minutes.  Crush tomatoes using Mix ‘N Chop.  Add  pasta, broth, wine, salt and pepper.

Return baker to microwave; cover and microwave 18-20 minutes or until pasta is tender.  Stir after 10 minutes.  Meanwhile, coarsely chop basil.

Add basil, grated cheese, and chicken to baker and mix well.  Sprinkle with shredded cheese, cover, and cook 1 more minute to melt cheese. 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Slow Cooker North Woods Wild Rice Soup

Slow Cooker North Woods Wild Rice Soup

Warm up your weekend with homemade soup! Here's one you don't have to watch over.

2 tsp vegetable oil                             
2 medium stalks celery, diced (1 c)
2medium carrots, diced (1 cup)
1 cup diced smoked turkey (6 ounces)
1/2cup uncooked wild rice
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon leaves
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 cups chicken broth
1 can (12 ounces) evaporated fat-free milk
1/3 cup Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1cup Green Giant® Valley Fresh Steamers™ frozen sweet peas, thawed
http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/slow-cooker-north-woods-wild-rice-soup/69306b26-a477-4e63-8556-afc8e5694acf?p=1

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Ham and Poppyseed Sliders

Ham Sandwich Sliders on Hawaiian Sweet Rolls

I absolutely love these!!!  I made them for one of our Christmas get-togethers this season and they were a big hit (though I'll make some adjustments next time).  There are lots of recipes out there and I looked at several before choosing the one I wanted to try.  They turned out really well EXCEPT for the fact that they were a little soggy and difficult to cut because of this.  Next time, I will be more cautious about how much of the mustard mixture I spread on the inside of the sandwich.  Also, be sure to spread the mustard mixture on the TOP, rather than bottom of the buns.  This will keep them from getting too soggy. 

This is reblogged from Beyer Beware:

Start by chopping or grating an onion. I use the Pampered Chef food chopper. I get a pretty fine mince.  (Note from Nikki, you know I don't eat onions so I left these out but I left it in the recipe for those of you who do)
Onion Half
Mincing onions with Pampered Chef Chopper
Minced onion

Melt a stick of butter and then add the onions.


Melting Butter
onions sauting in butter

Add three tablespoons of Dijon mustard to the onions and butter, stir together.

Mustard in onions and butter

Then pour in two teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce.

Onions with worcestershire sauce

Finally, add three teaspoons of poppy seeds and simmer until onions are soft.

Onion, butter, mustard and poppy seed mixture

Grab a package of Hawaiian sweet dinner rolls and cut the entire package in half length wise as one large piece.
King's Hawaiian Sweet Rolls
rolls cut in half

Place the roll bottoms in a aluminum foil lined 13 by 9 pan. Spread the onion mixture on the entire bottom. You will want to save about 1/4 of the mixture back.

onion mixture spread on rolls

Grab some shaved hams, about a half a pound, and seven to eight slices of swiss cheese. Put the ham on top of the onions and then add the slices of cheese.

Ham and Cheese
ham layer
cheese layer

Add the roll tops after the cheese.

roll topped

If you have any onion mixture left, spread it over top of the rolls.

onions and butter spread over ham sammies

Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate until ready to use. Bake on 350 degrees for 20 minutes, covered with foil.

Ham Sandwich Sliders on Hawaiian Sweet Rolls

When you remove from the oven, slice down the roll lines.

Ham Sandwich on Hawaiian Sweet Roll

http://www.beyerbeware.net/2011/04/hunk-of-meat-monday-game-time-favorites.html

Valentines Decor

Pinned Image

Yes, I'm one of those people who has the seasonally refillable jar.  I have a candle in the center of mine and I surround it with some sort of seasonable or holiday filler.  For Valentine's Day, I've surrounded a vanilla scented candle with conversation hearts.  Any heart-shaped candy will do.  It's a great, simple decoration for any room.