Thursday, April 28, 2016

Happy 35th Birthday Dave!!

Tomorrow, we will celebrate David's 35th birthday! It sounds so old!!! I know 35 is not old, but I feel like we just turned 22 and are still living the dream in college. It's also mind blowing to think I have a 4 year old in just 4 short days. Poor Dave always gets the shaft since his birthday is so close to Delainey's, but he assures me he wants nothing more than to sacrifice his birthday for Delainey so that is what we are doing. We are headed to Orlando tomorrow for a weekend of Disney fun! Tomorrow we have dinner reservations at Morimoto Asia in Downtown Disney to celebrate Dave's birthday. Saturday we are hitting Magic Kingdom bright and early so Delainey can go to the Bippity Boppity Boutique to be made into a princess and then we have lunch with the princesses in Cinderella's Castle. She is insisting on being Snow White despite my suggestions for Belle or Rapunzel LOL. Then Sunday we are going to Hollywood Studios. It should be a fun weekend even in 95 degree heat! Ahh!

Just want to say happy birthday to my main man on the blog! He truly is the best father to our kids! They light up and squeal when he comes home and Dad is chosen to read books over Mom every time. He of course is the fun one so who wouldn't want Dad around 24/7. He is a great provider for our family who works so hard and everyone that interacts with him loves him. He is also a fantastic husband. Our marriage has never been better and I love getting to enjoy life everyday with him. Happy birthday you old man! You are officially closer to 40 than 30. :) We love you!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

National Infertility Awareness Week 2016 - #StartAsking

Each year this week comes and goes by so fast that I feel like it is completely overlooked. This year, I am making it my personal goal to blow up my Blog, Facebook, and Instagram with infertility awareness posts so that if nothing else, at least my "friends" will see it. Who knows, maybe it will reach someone I didn't even know was going through the same thing I had to.

I can almost guarantee that every woman aged 28-45 either knows someone or themselves are struggling with some form of infertility. I'm an ex-math teacher here people and if the statistics are 1 in 8 people struggle with infertility, than anyone who has a few friends has it somewhere around them.
I just don't understand why it is kept such a secret. If someone is diagnosed with cancer it is plastered on Facebook with GoFundMe pages and them asking for all types of support. Why isn't it the same for infertility. It is a disease too and boy wouldn't it be nice if people were willing to donate to help with some treatment costs! I think the #1 problem that is preventing it from becoming widespread is that people who are affected by it are embarrassed or ashamed that they are "infertile." As if we chose to be! Of course we didn't, so why hide it and suffer in silence?

Listen, I am totally guilty of this. When I first was having trouble getting pregnant, I told NOONE that I was having to do IUIs to try and have a baby. I don't know if it was because I was embarrassed or if I just didn't want people to know because they would be asking me each month if it worked and if I was pregnant yet. It's enough of an emotional roller coaster to begin with, much less do I need people reminding me that No, I did not get pregnant again this month! Thanks a lot! The second time around, I was a little more open about having to do IVF, but I told my friends I was doing it a month after I really did. That way they weren't asking if I was pregnant. By the grace of God it worked, so when they asked what day I was doing it all, I was able to tell them I lied and I was already pregnant!

Ever since going through IVF, my outlook on it all has changed. It's not nearly as scary as you think and the shots are not that bad. The 2 week wait though...that's no joke! It is such a mental game that keeps you jumping from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows all within 10 seconds and you keep doing it for 14 days straight! You are aware of every cramp, gas bubble, bowel movement, basically any movement in your body and you of course over analyze what it could mean. It's tough. So since going through it, I have been making it my personal mission to reach out to as many people as possible going through it and just walk them through each step and answering any questions/fears they could possibly have. If I ever go back to work, I 100% want to be an infertility counselor to help prepare people for what they will endure.

Nowadays, I talk openly about all I have had to do to get my 2 beautiful daughters. When someone asks do I want more kids, I say "yes I do and I have 6 eggs frozen so who knows how many I will end up with!" (Several times I have said that and someone has overheard and later come up to me privately to ask about my experience and divulge they are struggling with infertility too.) My goal is that if I  talk about it enough, others will hear and 1. find comfort that they are not alone 2. take heart that they have someone they can go to to ask questions 3. raise awareness that it is WAY more common than you think to those who aren't struggling with it.

Unfortunately, I live in a state where infertility is not recognized as a disease. Therefore, insurance doesn't have to pay for it. I'm hoping one day in the near future Florida will jump on board with some of the other states and cover at least some of the costs. I can't imagine not being able to fulfill my dream of being a mom because of the cost of it. And for the love, how is it not covered 100% for injured war veterans whose wounds have caused them to have infertility issues! That is just ludicrous! After risking their lives for our safety and being injured, we can't pay to help them have a baby?!? Unacceptable! This years theme for National Infertility Awareness Week is #StartAsking. It is definitely time to Start Asking the government to do something to help people struggling with infertility! Everything else under the sun is recognized so why isn't infertility!

In my hopes to make it more aware and reach others struggling with infertility, I will be blogging my infertility journey over the next year. Starting next week I am going to start in(Fertility) Fridays, where I will update you on what's happening in my life. We are hoping to get pregnant again over this summer so there will be lots to share I am sure! Hopefully this weekly blogging will reach someone and help them through their struggles! Here's to hoping & praying God is on board with our plan for another child. Only time will tell!!!

To read more about my infertility journey so far, click this link.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Christ's Church Women's Retreat - 2016

This past weekend, I was able to attend my first ever Women's retreat at our church. Of course I was a little nervous as to what all it was going to entail, but a friend of mine from Mom 2 Mom went with me so I felt much better. It was Friday night and all day Saturday. (Shout out to Dave who watched the girls the entire time I was gone. He's the best!)

This years theme was "Shaken. Unshaken." Basically when an "earthquake" hits your life, will you be prepared and what will be left of you. We are all bound to face some trials and life so we need to make sure we are deep rooted in our faith, because all of the "created things" will be gone and we will be left with nothing but God.
There were some awesome testimonies that spanned from one lady who woke up one morning and her husband laying next to her was dead from a massive heart attack, to another lady getting sick one day finding out it was sepsis and she had to amputate her legs, fingers, and nose, and one lady who's husband had an affair and how they overcame it. My group of 7 women I sat with all had something pretty serious happen to them in their lives already. It's crazy to know that you will have troubles in your life, but they happen for a purpose so we need to stay near to God and see the best in every situation. The rocks in the picture on the right are filled with cards of things people are struggling with that they need to let go of and just trust God. Pretty cool concept as it was related to the "wailing wall" in Jerusalem.
My favorite part of the weekend was the worship music. The music was led by Austin & Lindsey Adamec (they lead our church worship) and I am obsessed with them. He actually had a few songs on the radio and they just made an album together and are trying to become famous. Selfishly I don't want them to because I know they'll leave the church :( Honestly though go look them up on iTunes. Maker of Miracles is an awesome song!! They are awesome and of course music is the way to the soul, so that really made an impact for me over the weekend!
It was a great retreat and I will definitely be attending again next year...and who knows maybe I'll even bring some people with me! 

Yesterday, we had a beach day since we did church Saturday night and it was a glorious day. We met up with Jeff & Kelli and Erica & Mike. The kiddies had a great time playing eating  the sand! LOL
Blakely's 1st time in pigtails :) 

After the beach, we stopped by the fort in St. Augustine since we have never been and it was free all week! Not being a big history buff, I just thought it was ok. They did fire the cannons while we were there though and that was cool! Dave loved it of course LOL!
I hope everyone had a great weekend! I know I did!! 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

McLaughlin Spring Photos - 2016

We just had some pictures done this past Sunday for Delainey's 4th birthday shots and Blakely's 1 year old shots. They turned out great! Here they are!!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Blakely's 12 Month Update

Sorry I am so far behind. It took me forever to take these 12 month pics :)

Height: 29 1/2 inches ... 62%
Weight: 20 lbs ... 54%
Head Circumference: 18 1/4 inches ... 85%
Vision: We are good in this department. Nothing to report
Movement: You've taken a few steps, but you are totally content with crawling. Everytime I get to you to stand and let go you sit back down. LOL Looks like we didn't make it for our 1st birthday party. Oh well! You are much more active at My Gym and are starting to climb ladders, stairs, hold onto the bars, working on your balance. You are a quick little crawler!
Eating Habits/New Foods: Milk is strictly whole milk these days and you love it (so does my bank account!) You have about 4 bottles of milk a day. One when you wake up, one before your 1st nap around 10:30, one around your second nap around 2, and one before bed. Any other time you usually drink water. You are still obsessed with food! Your new favorite is graham crackers and baby goldfish. You also have enjoyed broccoli, corn, asparagus, steak, pork, you love sausage in the morning. We still do pouches when we are on the go just bc it is so easy. Most food at home those is finger foods.
Sleeping Patterns: We are back to sleeping through the night! Hallelujah! I just clicked one night for you and we have been good ever since. You make occasional noises and move around at night, but you go back to sleep. You usually sleep from about 8 pm to 7:30 am. We are still doing 2 naps a day around 10:30 and 2. Those also depend on if you get a cat nap in the car.
Sounds/Words: You are definitely talking more. You can say hi and bye and I swear both Dave and I heard you say a sentence the other day, but I've never heard anything again so I think it was a fluke.We have learned the dog sign, drink, as well as please and thank you. You are your sisters parrot. You actually copy most anyone. I was blowing my nose the other day holding one nostril and you did the same thing and actually blew out your nose. Sis will make a weird sound and you do it too. I'm really working on teaching Delainey to only teach you good choices. Poor second kid here we go...
New discoveries/accomplishments:
-You took a few steps! But still no consistent walking
-You FINALLY had your 1st tooth break through. Literally like 2 days before your birthday. I think the other middle bottom is coming in too, but we shall see. You weren't too bad, but you could definitely tell it was hurting you.
-You are great with the signs: more, all done, ouch, milk, hi & bye, drink, thank you, please, dog
-You celebrated your 1st birthday with birthday pancakes covered in frosting!
-You had a Minnie mouse themed birthday party for you with tons of friends!
-Dr. Mary said you are very advanced in your fine motor skills. Dynamite pincher grip and taking things from people.
Places you went/Adventures: Your big adventure this month was celebrating your 1st birthday!! You had lots of friends over for a Minnie party with a water slide and bounce house. You spent majority of the month outside enjoying the weather. You are a maniac in the pool. You want to just dive right in!  We also went out on the boat and had lunch as Beaches. You loved the boat, but hated your big daddy life jacket. We went to Chuck E Cheese for birthday week! And we did some Easter egg hunts and celebrated your 2nd Easter!
Clothes: You are in 12 month clothes, some 12-18. I just pulled out all of Delainey's old summer clothes and I can't wait to get you in all these precious outfits! You are still a size 3 shoe though so we are a little behind sis there. You are actually 1 inch shorter and 1 pound lighter than what D was at her 1st birthday.  You are still in a size 5 diaper. Size 3 shoe
Sister updates: You I seriously stare at you girls daily thanking God 1. I am so lucky to have both of you precious girls and 2. I am so glad you have each other to be best friends for the rest of your lives. Delainey loves being the first one in your room after you wake up in the morning or after nap. She loves showing you things. She is so sweet to you in the playhouse at Gammoe's house. You 2 play in there together so well for at least 30 minutes which is heaven. Sisters are the best!!!
Weekly Pictures:

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Frozen on Ice

This past Friday, Kelli and I decided to take the girls to Frozen on Ice. We usually do Disney on Ice and I'm never that impressed, so I wasn't thrilled about the idea but I knew Delainey would be. So we tried it out. I loved it! It was so much better than the ones in the past. Maybe because it had a storyline and it was identical to the movie, it just seemed so much better! Delainey and Georgia were very excited to go into the arena. 

Mom for the win! I brought frozen ice's from home so we didn't have to buy the $14 snow cones! Blakely loved the show and actually sat there and watched for all but 10 minutes of the 2 hour show.

Sven the reindeer killed me since it was 2 people skating together. The costumes and skating was really good.
 Blake needed to stretch her legs so she took a stroll down the aisle during intermission. LOL

At the beginning and the end, all of the princesses and Disney characters came out for a cameo so that was very cool too!

 We were having a real good time haha! I would totally go to this again!

In other news, we pretty much laid low this weekend. Well I take that back. Friday we laid low at the house. Dave grilled steaks while the girls played in the water table on the patio and then we enjoyed dinner outside.

Saturday we skipped the soccer game and relaxed in the morning and then went to a meeting with our builder where we went over the first draft of our plans!! How sweet are these 2 snuggling in bed in the morning with each other!!
Saturday afternoon we headed out to our friend Chris's 30th birthday party. Dave and Mike actually won the corn hole tournament and made $60 each so I was pretty excited about that! 
Today we went to church, washed & cleaned cars, and had dinner at Gammoe's. On to another busy week ahead! I hope everyone had a nice relaxing weekend!