Saturday, May 31, 2014

Five on Friday (well...Saturday...)

Another week gone. I'm a day late on this, but decided still to post. How can it be June tomorrow?The weather finally seems to be agreeing with the calendar, which is nice. It's been a fun's what's on my mind.

My birthday was on Thursday, and it was wonderful! I had a really great day! Jeromy took the day off, so we all got to sleep in. We had a nice slow morning, waking up slowly, and having blueberry pancakes for breakfast. Mid-morning we took Linnea to daycare, so Jeromy and I could have a little date day.

The weather was amazing, so we decided to do a little geocaching. It was a bit of a bust, since the path we needed to take to find many of the ones we were planning on was flooded out. But we found a few, enjoyed each other's company, and soaked up the sun.


We had an impromptu lunch on the patio at Maynard's. After that, Jeromy dropped me off for my 90 minute massage! It was wonderful!!

Jeromy picked up Linnea, and then they both picked me up after my massage. We made a quick stop at home, and then had dinner at Brasa, which has become a family favorite. It was a perfect day!

Me and my girl at dinner!

This weekend has been Operation: Big Girl Bed. We bought the bed last weekend, and were finally able to order the mattress on Thursday. Jeromy picked it up yesterday, and we have one successful night under our belts. It takes her a bit to settle down, although that was true with her crib. She's waking up a lot to go to the bathroom, but was like that with the crib.

I think she'll do okay, which is a relief.

Have you heard of John Green? He's an absolutely brilliant young adult author. I've been a fan since about 2007/2008. He's gotten attention recently for this book The Fault in Our Stars, because it's now a highly anticipated movie.

I re-read The Fault in Our Stars - finished it this week. It was even better the second time around, which I didn't even think possible.

If you haven't read it, do yourself a favor and read it...and then let me know what you think. I'm looking forward to the movie, which is coming out next week. John played a big part in the creation of the picture, so I trust it will do the book justice.

I put together the family calendar for June today (we have a dry erase calendar that hangs in our kitchen), and I'm just bracing myself for the month to fly by. It's a busy one, filled with lots of fun things, and two out of town trips for me. I catch myself worrying about how everything is going to get done, and how it's all going to go.

I have to turn off the anxious voice in brain, and tell myself to just enjoy!

I found this a week or so back, but I still wanted to share. I really like it, and find myself coming back to it. It can be true about a lot of things and situations. You may not be able to control the situation you are in, but you have the ability to choose the way you respond. It's not always easy, but it's a good thing to at least try to remember.

Photo: This is lovely... :-) Choosing hope today.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

(Memorial Day) Weekend Recap

Oh, what a wonderful weekend! Not only was it a long weekend, but the weather was fantastic! All of Minnesota was rejoicing, and was out to play this weekend. We had a great weekend filled with friends, family, BBQs, and fun!

On Friday, we hung out after work, had dinner, and got Linnea ready for bed. I let Jeromy finish up the bedtime routine, so that I could go to MOA to get my eyebrows threaded. Call me strange, but it is one of my simple pleasures. I tried eyebrow threading as part of my 30 Before 30 project, and totally got hooked. It kind of hurts, but it is SO efficient and effective. My brows can get quite unruly, and I feel like it completely changes the look of my face to have them nice and clean. After that, I made a quick stop at Target. I came home to a lovely backyard fire. Jeromy and I enjoyed the weather and company. I think I've sent before that we're not always great conversationalists in the midst of our busy days. It's so wonderful to have the time and opportunity to slow down and talk - we should do that more often!

On Saturday we had our typical loungy, slow morning, basking in the beautiful weather. Then we got ready to head out for a fun family BBQ! We met up with Melissa and Dawn at a little park area next to the Lake Nokomis Community Center. The weather was perfect! I was so fun to get our families together. Melissa and I have been good friends for a few years, but I just recently met Dawn through the blogosphere. We all click so well, and it was fun to see all the husbands and kids click too. We played on the playground, sat and talked, had a picnic feast, AND we got to introduce Dawn and her awesome family to geocaching, one of our favorite family hobbies!

This girl LOVES to swing...

How cute are these two building sandcastles?

Hee hee!

Yay for friends, new and old!

We had a BLAST! When we got home, all three of us totally crashed and took long naps.

After we got up, I called my mom to say hi, and she ended up inviting us over for an impromptu dinner. They just got back from Italy, and we haven't spent much time with them since then, so it was really nice to chat and hang out. We had my dad's awesome BBQ chicken. The weather was awesome, so we spent the whole time outside.

When we got home, we put Linnea to bed and then hung out together outside. I read for a bit (I'm re-reading The Fault in Our Stars - it is even more amazing on a second read). Then I did the Q&A with Jeromy post. We had a good time with it! Lots of laughs. We know each other so well, that I can predict his answers, and we have fun teasing each other about our quirks.

On Sunday (another beautiful day!!) we headed to church. We're on the summer schedule, which means church starts at 9:00. It's always a little tough for us to get there on time (we live 20 or so minutes away). But then it's nice because when church is done, we still have time to be productive in the morning. We stopped for a quick geocache (which I found right away, thank you very much :-) ). The weather and trees were so pretty - we couldn't resist taking a few pictures.

When did she get so big??

I love my girl!!

After that we made a quick stop at Costco and the grocery store, and then home for lunch and nap. 

In the afternoon we went down to Farmington, and bought Linnea a big girl bed off Craigslist. We don't have a mattress yet (hopefully we'll get one this week), but it's a start. We had an impromptu dinner at Noodles since it got a little late, and then swung by to get "big girl sheets" at Target (one Frozen set, and one Minnie Mouse set). Linnea's pretty pumped.

And then we got a bonus day! Monday! There's something just WONDERFUL about having Monday off. I mean any day off is great, but Monday's off are particularly fantastic. Monday morning we had planned to do a family bike ride with our friends Tom, Jackie, and Gavin. But the weather was looking a little questionable, so we decided to play it safe. In the end, the weather held out, and we would have been okay...but we had a great time with our back-up plan. Instead of the bike ride, we went to Good Times Park in Eagan. We had never been before. It's an awesome indoor playground - tons of fun equipment and space to run around. (Note to self: remember this place in the Winter!). We had a BLAST!

I love this action shot of Gavin!

Love the "tongue of concentration" and Jeromy's smile


Ha ha! This little spinner toy kept them entertained for a while, and made us dizzy just watching!

We got home, and Linnea and Jeromy had lunch, while I met up with Jackie on my own for lunch. Jackie's birthday was on Sunday, and mine is on Thursday. We have a long standing tradition of having lunch together for our birthdays. We met on Tavern on France, and it was lovely. We sat out of the patio and had salads, raspberry lemonade, and chocolate fondue for dessert. It was soooo good, but I ate way too much! I'm so thankful to have such a dear friend - we've been friends for half our lives!

After I got back, and Linnea got up from her nap, we headed over to Tom and Jackie's house for a friend BBQ. We had a great time - again, getting to spend the whole time outside! Woo hoo!!

Coloring on the deck...

Yay for wonderful friends, and great weather!

We were all so tired by Monday night, but it was well worth it! What a wonderful weekend! I hope you had a fun one too!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Q & A with Jeromy

I'm a sucker for when I saw this idea on a few different blogs, I knew I wanted to do it. I was actually a little surprised how willing he was to do it. I thought I'd have to do a little more arm twisting. But he said yes right away, and we had a good time with it. We're not always great conversationalists with each other day to day...

So here ya Q & A with Jeromy:

What is the name of my blog?
B(like the letter "B")HappyInToday (I was actually really surprised he knew this, since I don't really ever talk specifics about my blog).

What do I typically write about?
It's like a what happened over the weekend or during the we've been doing.

What's a popular fashion item for women right now?
Boots. (I asked him he had more to say, and then he said, "Boots." I waited a bit and he elaborated.) Boots are okay...but I don't like when tweens wear them with leggings and no pants. Stupid kids. (At which point we joked that I married a crabby 50-year-old man. I pointed out that I wear boots and leggings with no pants.) Yeah, but you wear something that covers your butt. You know I'm right. (It's true. We are crabby old people together. We collectively hate the skin tight leggings and nothing covering your ass look.)

What's the best place to shop for women?
Ummm... Target. (We laughed because I LOVE Target.) Seriously. Clothes. Miscellaneous gifts. Feminine products. When you shop for a women it's not just's everyday things... CHOCOLATE (I love him. He knows me so well.) Shoes. Jewelry...   

What do you know about Pinterest?
I know it's a place where people have boards to share or keep track of interesting things.

What do you and I like to do together?
Go geocaching. Entertain Linnea. Go out to eat...try new restaurants. Travel. Go up North. I feel like we're really good travel partners in most situations. You're enough of a planner and I'm enough of a doer. (This is really accurate. Jeromy will just go and do. I always want a plan. It ends up being a really good balance of spontaneity and getting the "must dos" done.) 

Am I good at staying on a budget?
Yes...well no... you are below the budget. Lighten when there's nothing in the fridge or your lunch was nasty, but you feel too guilty to go out to lunch. (Totally true. I'm a MAJOR cheapskate. I hate spending money. We agreed that I've gotten better...)

What do women keep in their purse?
Everything. I know what's in your purse...checkbook, cards, receipts, chapstick, keys, cell phone, feminine products...uhhh....Linnea underwear (True.), pen, notepad, ibuprofen, lotion. (This is quite accurate...he just missed a couple things.)

What do I do when I'm home alone?
Stew about what you should be doing. Pick up after Linnea. Watch Ellen.

What do you do when you're home alone?
Watch TV. Putz on my phone/tablet. Yard projects. And cooking. 

What is your favorite thing about me?
Your balancing traits. (I asked him what he said, because I wasn't quite sure.) Like paired with me. You're enough opposite from me that we equal a normal person. Neither one of us is on either extreme of the spectrum...just on opposite sides - equidistant from the fulcrum - aka normal. (I teased him for being so deep, but I like this answer. It's true, and it means a lot that he would say that because I know he gets frustrated with me and we can butt heads because of it too.)

Least favorite?
Self consciousness. About your body, and outgoingness. You get too hard on yourself - like with parenting, and cooking - every day stuff like that. (True. I am hard on myself...although I'm surprised this is his least favorite. It makes me want to get better at this!) 

What's my favorite accessory?
Chunky jewelry. (True, I guess. Although the answer surprised me. I don't really wear it a lot...but it's fun to have like a big, fun necklace or earrings.)

What's an acceptable amount to spend on a makeup item?
(He laughed.) Zero...because you don't buy any. I would reevaluate if you were in to makeup... (I don't wear makeup at all.) 

What are my hobbies?
Running. Blogging. You don't have a lot of hobbies. Maybe geocaching...but I don't know if you feel like you have ownership of that. (I would definitely say geocaching is one of my's maybe not "mine" because it's a family hobby, but still a hobby.) Making lists. (Don't I sound fun...ha ha ha.)

What jewelry do I wear every day?
Your wedding ring. Some sort of earrings (I have to laugh, because I can't remember the last time I changed my earrings...I don't think he notices the earrings I wear, just that I'm wearing them). Your Luther ring. 

What's my favorite TV show?

How excited were you when you found out we were having a girl? 
Ummm... I don't know. That's a tough answer. 7 out of 10, that quickly became a 10 out of 10. (I asked him why a 7.) Because of the fear factor. (I asked what the fear was.) I dunno...I don't know if I should say this... but if it's a boy, you only have to worry about one penis. With a girl, you have to worry about all the penises.

What's your favorite thing about being a dad?
(He thought for a long time, and then asked me my favorite thing about being a mom - for the record I said feeling like I'm fulfilling my lifelong purpose - like someone who always wanted to be a doctor, and now has a dream doctor job...and being her "person" - being the one she wants when she's sad or scared...being the person she's most happy and excited to see. ) Yeah, that for me too...but I don't know quite how I would word it. And being proud of how much she's grown and her every day accomplishments. Being the reason she smiles (Awww...). 

How many more kids would you like to have?
One (I knew that answer...we differ on this...I've always wanted 3 kids...I feel like he'll win on this one, which I'm trying to prepare to be okay with.)

Anything else you'd like to share?
Ummmm...nope. I'm a man of few words. (He is, but I thought he did very well with this.) 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Five on Friday

It's been a busy week, and I can't believe it's Friday! Three day weekend coming up, and a short, birthday week next week! Waaaa-hooooo!!!

Here's what's in my brain this week!

You guys. I'm going to be photographed for the 4th Trimester Body Project. Have you heard of it? Basically, the 4th Trimester Body Project is the brain child of photographer Ashlee Wells Jackson. According to the website the project is "dedicated to embracing the beauty inherent in the changes brought to our bodies by motherhood, childbirth, and breastfeeding."

I've been following the project on Facebook for quite some time. The images Ashlee captures are absolutely gorgeous - moms of all shapes, sizes, ages, and circumstance. Sometimes on their own, sometimes with their kids - always a black and white image of women wearing black underwear and bra (or some topless). The images are so tastefully done, and provide such a beautiful glimpse at what bodies can look like after pregnancy and child birth.

As soon as I heard they were coming to Minneapolis, I considered doing it. But being photographed in my underwear? That's enough to make most people a little nervous. I've struggled with weight/body image issues for most of my adult life. I have, for my entire adult life, been considered "overweight" by the BMI scale. The ONLY time I was barely under that was when I was breastfeeding and training for a half marathon, and quite frankly not able to eat enough within the day to maintain a healthy weight.

So yeah, I'm nervous. But I believe so strongly in the mission of the project. And I want Linnea to grow up seeing me EMBRACE my body, rather than OBSESS over its imperfections. Especially after the miscarriage, I knew how important it is to honor and embrace my body as much as I can.

Stay tuned to hear more - the photo shoot is at the end of July!

Have you heard Sia's song Chandelier? (I don't know how late I am to this party.) I was exposed to it this week and I CAN. NOT. STOP. listening to it.

The song itself is awesome - a little bit haunting/weird. The video is down right bizarre. It's once of those songs and videos that I don't quite understand, but I can't get enough of.

I meant to post this last week...I've been thinking a lot about the world of social media. It's such an interesting beast. Through social media I've met people I likely never would have met, stayed connected with people I may have struggled to stay connected with, have shared major life experiences, gotten advice, etc.

But there is such a dark/dangerous side too. Social media has created a world of instantaneous judgement. You like a post, comment on a picture, share a link. You write your opinions on the latest election, or the juiciest piece of celebrity gossip, etc, and it's suddenly available for everyone to see to read, judge, like, share...

Further, social media creates a certain sense of anonymity and level of protection... people feel as though they can say ANYTHING with repercussion. People say things online that they would never say to someone's face (or at least I hope they wouldn't).

I really don't like this side of social media. I'm trying to be aware of my own habits, to not play in to this tendency.

I don't really have a point to this...I've just been thinking about it, so I thought I'd share. :-)

A good example of the "staying connected with people I may have struggled to stay connected with" mentioned above are my awesome friends Bethany and Pam.

Bethany, Pam, and I met when we worked together at Augsburg Fortress Publishing several years back. After several years of working together, Pam and I moved on to other opportunities, while Bethany did an awesome job of advancing within the organization. Now Bethany's moving to Seattle, which prompted us to get together - for the first time since probably the last time we worked together (2008/2009).

So on Wednesday we got together for dinner at Pizza Biga in Minneapolis (Jeromy and Linnea joined in too). After dinner, we went to a local nail salon to get pedicures.

It was SO fun to reconnect - we picked up right where we left off, as in no time had passed. It was a good reminder to make it a priority to get together with friends, and not let time slip away.

I ran for the first time in a very long time this week. Getting back to running has been such an obstacle for me. I hadn't been able to run - or even workout - at all when I was pregnant. And then when I miscarried, I was struggling to get motivated to get back at it. But I know that running and being active is such a critical part of my emotional health.

So I pushed myself out the door. I'm so stubborn that I set the bar high for myself - so my first run back was almost 4.5 miles, pushing Linnea in the stroller. It was slow - and we took a couple little breaks, but I did it it and it felt good to be back at it.

The goal for the coming weeks is to get back to a decent routine. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Weekend Recap

Another weekend in the books. After the last few weeks draaaaggging by, time is back to flying by. Isn't it funny how time works? Let's find a happy medium, shall we? I don't care for either extreme.

This weekend was pretty good, overall. I've been struck by how crazy my emotions are. It's hard to know what exactly is the cause - left over pregnancy hormones getting out after the D&C? Emotions wrapped up with the miscarriage? Day to day stress? A mix of everything? The latter is probably the most likely. I struggle because I don't WANT all of "this" to affect me...but of course it does. Trying to acknowledge the transition I'm going through, and take it as it comes...

Anyways...a good weekend overall.

On Friday, I managed to get out of work a little early to head over to our church carnival. It was a big bonus that I got to pick Linnea up at daycare with Jeromy. I never do daycare pick-up, so to see the surprise on her face when I walked through the gate to the backyard was priceless. I got a huge running hug, and then she excitedly chattered about the toys, the swings, her day, etc.

We made a quick stop for a family friendly geocache (I should make a post about geocaching some time). We are huge fans. Linnea was able to make the grab, which is always fun. We stopped for a quick swing at the park, and then headed to church.

It was the end of the year carnival, and we had a really good time! We started the night with some food - Linnea was a little chow hound - a piece of pizza and most of a corndog, and applesauce. They had lots of little carnival games set up - a cake walk, a fishing game, ring toss, etc. It was all a little overwhelming to Linnea, but she had fun once she got into it a bit.

Playing the "Duck Game" - and why yes, she does have a kitty face. :-)

This picture cracks me up. Check out Linnea eyeing up her cupcake!

Coloring! (She picked out the "Luther Puppy" picture - I love how much this kid loves her dog!)

It was great to see some friends, and catch up a little bit, and fun to do something a little different from our typical Friday crash. Once we got home from the carnival, we did crash - but it was after a fun night. :-)

Did I mention they did a "photo booth?" This is my favorite picture of the night. I love my crazy little family!

On Saturday we woke up without much planned - had a few errands in mind, and a couple things we had thought about doing. However, Jeromy's Uncle Jeff reached out to see if we'd be interested in having him come into town (he lives in Eau Claire) to go geocaching (he is the one who got us into it). Our response - sure!

Linnea and I walked to the post office to mail a care package before he came - I love walking errands! It's so nice that we have so much so close. By the time we got home, Jeff was there and we headed out. The weather was beautiful! We went to Lake Nokomis and successfully found two hides that had us stumped previously. Those are so satisfying! By the time we were done, it was lunch time. We swung over to Chipotle. Unfortunately, it was super busy, so we decided to take the food home. It actually worked out better that way - we didn't have to buy food for Linnea since we could just make a quesadilla at home, and we got to eat outside on the deck.

Jeromy, Linnea, and Jeff out geocaching

Can you find the cache?

Linnea was VERY excited to walk her puppy in the stroller

Which turned into a run with the puppy in the stroller (that's my girl!)

I put Linnea down after lunch, and Jeff and Jeromy headed out for some more geocaching. Linnea napped for a bit, but not as long as she should have, so she woke up cranky. I have some serious mom guilt that we've been resorting to "quiet time" in front of the TV if she wakes up early like that. It helps her wake up slower, and not be such a bear, because she gets some additional rest time. Hopefully I'm not totally destroying my kid!

Shortly after that, Jeff headed home and we hung out a bit at home. Jeromy got dinner started, and Linnea and I played a bit.

This was one of the times during the weekend that I struggled with my emotions. I had shorter patience with Linnea than I usually do. I was snappy at Jeromy. I got teary. In hindsight, I'm not entirely sure what was "wrong" - a lot of little issues I suppose, and too many wacky hormones.

Anyways, we had a nice dinner, and then Jeromy suggested we go out for ice cream. A good idea - get out of the house, have some fun family time, relax. It was a nice way to wrap up the evening. This is pathetic, but I think everyone was in bed by 9:00 at our house.

Someone was pretty excited about ice cream...

On Sunday, Linnea slept a little later than she has been, which was really nice. It was another nice day, so after breakfast, Linnea and I went for a walk around Lake Nokomis with my co-worker friend Anne and her son Miles.

I have had a really hard time getting back to being active after everything. I love to run usually, but it feels so overwhelming to try to get back to that. Everything was put on hold for over a's intimidating to try to get back into a good routine, especially when I'm dealing with so many challenging emotions. And of course the hope is that I get pregnant again soon - which would mean pressing the pause button again on working out. What I SHOULD do is to just take each day and be as active as I can. I'll be working on it...once I kick this darn cold. I'll let you know how it goes.

After I got back from my walk, we spent some more time outside. While we were out, Jeromy had gone to Home Depot to get some more mulch for a landscaping project. So we worked together on that while Linnea played in the yard, and sat and read.

I love how content she is to just do this...

My sweet beastie boy...

After lunch and nap, we ran out quick to look at "big girl beds." We hope to make this transition soon, but we want to do our research before we take the leap. We're debating between getting a bedroom set vs. separate pieces vs. just a mattress and a bed frame. We got a lot of good information. We've still got a few more places to check out, but I hope that within the next couple weeks we're making the switch. Any tips? Wish us luck!

After that we came home for dinner, bathtime, and getting ready for the week ahead. I'm excited for a couple days off of work in the coming weeks. Looks like Spring/Summer is on its way. I saw someone else do a Summer bucket list...I think I might need to do a post on that soon!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Five on Friday

After weeks that dragged by because I felt like crap, this week has really flown by. I spent the week trying to get back on track...with home...emotionally.

Here's what's rattling around in my brain this week...

Has it really only been a week? Even though the week has flown by, I can't believe it's only been a week since we officially said goodbye to our Christmas baby. It's been an odd week emotionally. I've been less sad than I expected overall, mostly because it honestly just feels like a bad dream. It seems weird to think I was even pregnant...and especially weird to think that it was only a week and a half ago that everything seemed fine.

I've been so thankful for my friends this week. I've gotten texts, blog comments, Facebook messages, calls, etc. to check in on how I'm feeling, how I'm doing, and to say sorry. I appreciate this more than I can say. Thank you to everyone reading this who has supported me in these ways.

All of a sudden, my birthday is just around the corner. I know a lot of people don't like their birthdays, but let me tell you...THIS girl is not one of them.

I love that my birthday is MY day (sure, there are a lot of other people born on that day, but whatever). I'm not always great about taking time for myself or thinking about what I want, but I try my best to do what I want on my birthday.

I love that birthdays offer the opportunity to celebrate LIFE! I hope that I never get to the point of not wanting to disclose my age. I wanted to embrace each and every year of my life - they make me me, after all.

I've officially caught the family cold. Not enough to stay in bed, but enough to make me feel really junky. Headache. Scratchy, runny throat. Stuffy. Yuck. I hope it passes soon.

We're hoping to make the move to a big girl bed for Linnea soon. This has been another transition I've been SO overwhelmed by and nervous about. However, I'm hopeful, because other transitions I've been really nervous about lately (getting rid of the nuk at bedtime, potty training) have gone pretty well. I think she's ready. Now the question mama?

Seriously, where is Spring? It's been chillier this week than average. Sounds like more consistent 70s and sunny days are on the way. Please, please, please!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Weekend Recap

With all the events as of late, this post has gotten away from me a bit. But in the spirit of staying current, and really giving this blogging thing a genuine go, I'm sticking with my weekend recap. (Yes, it's Wednesday.)

As covered in previous posts, Friday was a tough day. It ended as positively as I suppose it could... dinner with my parents and little family after the procedure was all done. It ended up being a little later than desired or planned, but it all worked out fine. Linnea did great, especially given that dinner and bedtime got delayed.

My dad picked up take-out from Pei-Wei, and we had dinner together at their house. I think I mentioned before, but it was seriously crazy how instantly I felt relief from my pregnancy symptoms (which is really sad, but nice in a way...if I don't get to be pregnant, I don't want to feel it!). Similar to my pregnancy with Linnea, this time around I was feeling so nauseous all the time...nothing ever tasted good, and I was living off very bland food. That changed quite dramatically.

We got home, and got Linnea off to bed right away. I tried to rest, and take it easy, but I had a ton of energy (again, weird!). I mostly just watched some TV, cleaned up a bit, and putzed on the computer. But I was up later than intended, and had a really hard time falling asleep.

Thankfully, Linnea slept in a bit Saturday morning. Problem was, that we needed to pick my parents up to bring them to the airport! Eep! It was a bit of a mad dash (is there anything pokier than a precocious 2-year-old when you're in a hurry?!). Linnea was really excited about taking Grandma and Grandpa to the airport, but the excitement faded a little when she realized that that basically meant her sitting in the car for 45 minutes or so. So she was a bit of a grump. But we got my parents off successfully to Italy (seriously, can I please have their travel schedule some day?!), and headed home.

The weather was much nicer than it was supposed to be/expected, so we took full advantage. We got back out as soon as we could, and headed over to Lake Harriet (one of our local favorites). We took a walk/geocached through the rose garden and the bird sanctuary. We didn't have a TON of luck, but we all enjoyed being outside. Eventually we made our way to the playground, where a joyous Linnea romped happily for a while. She settled eventually on the swings (her favorite). The "baby swings" were full, so she ended up on the "big girl swing." I was a little nervous, praying that she would hold on tight (she did). Jeromy and I pushed her between the two of us and enjoyed her smiles and shrieks (she is so joyful - and it's appreciated so much).

By the time we finished at the playground it was about lunch time, so we decided to grab some food at Bread and Pickle - the little restaurant in the bandshell. It was expensive, but pretty good quality. It was a bit chilly with the breeze coming off the lake, but we snuggled up together and really enjoyed our lunch together. We headed home for naps.

In the afternoon we took a family walk to the grocery store to pick up a few ingredients for dinner. We came home and our friends Melissa and Thatcher, and their kiddos Azalea and Ashford came over for playtime and dinner. The girls are just a few months apart in age, and are becoming good's so fun to watch. Gotta love second generation friends!

We had one of our favorite pasta dishes, and then enjoyed watching the girls play together after dinner. They got just plain goofy! We have two large plastic balls. Each girl had one and was bouncing on it all over the place. Their giggles were infectious!

Sunday was Mother's Day, and very bittersweet this year. For several weeks, I had been looking forward to the weekend as the time that we got to break our happy news to our families. Instead, we were facing miscarriage. More than ever, I was thankful for Linnea. She is such a joyful little bugger, and obviously completely unaware of what has been happening.

My morning started with getting to rest a little longer than usual in bed, and then being enthusiastically by Linnea with a homemade card in hand. (We pretty much exclusively do homemade cards around here, and I love it). I also had this message shared on my Facebook wall! (Scheduled for my birthday, which is a few weeks away. Woo hoo!!!)

Jeromy Carlson shared a link.
90 minute full-body massage booked for you, Becky. Happy Mother's Day from me, Linnea and Beastie! We love you!
We slowly got ready for the day and then headed out to meet Jeromy's family for brunch at Prairie Tap House in Eden Prairie (have you been? It's really good!). I was a little disappointed by my breakfast, but the others enjoyed their food, and we've always liked our food there.

Brunch was nice, but a little crazy. Jeromy's family is wonderful, but big and a lot to handle sometimes. It can be a little tiring to keep up sometimes. It's fun to watch Linnea with her Grammy and Grampy... she just LOVES them (and they love her).

After brunch, we stopped at Costco to pick up a few things (Jeromy's family doesn't have a membership, so they really like stopping when we're in the area). By the time we were done we all went home exhausted.  After nap, we were still a bit exhausted from the morning, and from the emotion of the day. 

Thankfully, our friends Tom and Jackie (and son Gavin) invited us for an impromptu dinner at Pizza Luce - one of our favorites. It was nice to get out and break out of our funk a bit. The kiddos were a little squirrelly, so it was not quite relaxing, but nice to get out and spend time with friends all the same.

Even though it was a tough weekend emotionally, we had a good time, surrounded by friends and family. 

Monday, May 12, 2014


I appreciate you hanging with me for these less than fun posts. It's actually been incredibly cathartic to write about this whole process. I am, and have always been a big time feelings person. I have "big feelings" and am a total open book when it comes to my emotions. That's been particularly challenging during miscarriage, because it's generally such a hush-hush and taboo subject. I, quite frankly, think that's ridiculous. I think that miscarriage is something that NEEDS to be talked about. It's so much more common than it seems, and it's often a quiet pain for women. So I'm talking...or at least writing. I hope that these posts can provide at least a little comfort for women facing the same.

Rewind to Thursday. I was at work, trying my best to be productive to make up for my missed days earlier in the week. Thank God for super super supportive co-workers. I got lots of hugs, kind words, and even some chocolate delivered to my desk.

In the afternoon I got a voicemail from the surgery schedulers to confirm my appointment. When I called back I found out that they had me scheduled for check in at 6:30 AM the next morning. That really wasn't going to work. I couldn't imagine how I was going to get to the hospital (with a driver) by 6:30 with Linnea to think about. So I asked if there was anything later. After a little back and forth, we settled on 3:30, with a 2:00 check-in. This worked MUCH better time wise. The only unfortunate part is that it meant I couldn't eat anything after breakfast!

Friday morning I headed to my parents with Jeromy and Linnea to hang out there for the day (Jeromy had to work, but Linnea was there for her usual Friday). It was a long morning. It was hard to be happy and playful, when I was so scared and sad about what I had to face that afternoon. I managed to snooze a little on the couch, and enjoy some extra, much needed time with my sweet girl.

A little after 11:00 I got a call from the surgeon who would be doing the procedure. He explained that he was reviewing my record, and with the information he had, he did not feel comfortable going through with the surgery. What?! He explained more...the baby was measuring 6 weeks, 1 day. Even though the "numbers" (date of last period, positive pregnancy) clearly indicated I was 9 weeks, if something did happen to be "off," a 6 week, 1 day baby would not necessarily have a visible heartbeat. Since he didn't have any information beyond the ultrasound and those dates, he indicated he did not have a clear diagnosis of miscarriage.

With a bit more conversation we decided I would go to the Chanhassen clinic to get my blood drawn to test for HSG (the pregnancy hormone). Our hope was that the results would point to a clear diagnosis (of course the real hope is that it would provide indication that there may actually be a healthy baby in there, but that was very slim). The surgeon said he would call with the results, but we may need to delay it until Monday.

So I ran to the clinic, got my blood drawn. and went back home to my parents. Then I waited. And waited. And waited. No call. It was getting close to 2:00, so my mom and I headed to the hospital. I got checked in, and was brought back to the surgery center. Enter the nerves. Got changed into a robe, and started talking with the nurse. At this point, I didn't even know if they'd be able to go through with the procedure, and no one else seemed to know either.

They tracked down the surgeon. He apologized profusely, and said he had just found out that the Chanhassen clinic doesn't test for HSG on site, so they didn't have the results. ARG! Rather than wait for them to send it across town, they decided to test it again. The doctor said that the lab said it would only take 15-20 minutes. We waited. And waited. And waited.

FINALLY the surgeon came back with the results. (I will say again that the doctor was so, so, so wonderful. He was so present. So compassionate. So kind.). He carefully explained that my HSG levels were very high.... more in line with being 9 weeks along. With those HSG levels, the baby should definitely have a visible heartbeat. So he was able to formally diagnosis miscarriage.

It hurt to have the final answer. To know this really was the end, and we really had lost our baby. With a deep breath, and a brave face, I prepped for surgery. My mom gave me one last hug, they hooked up my IV, and wheeled me back to the operating room.

I remember being introduced to the nurses, and seeing the surgeon come in. They had me move from the rolling bed to the operating table, and got the IV medicine flowing. And then I was out.

I woke up after what felt like 5 minutes, back in the surgery center. It felt just like waking up from a really deep sleep. It was a little alarming, because I don't know how I got back on the rolling bed...or got the mesh underwear on...or anyone putting all the monitoring stickers on me. But I guess that's normal.

Much to my relief, I was not in any pain. None. My mom came back as I was waking up. We chatted for a bit, and I sipped on my Coke and nibbled on saltines until I felt steady again. Then I got dressed, and headed back home to my parents.

For anyone who is facing the same, please know that the anticipation and waiting for the D&C was a million times worse than the procedure. The process itself was fast, painless, and a relief to have over.

I'm now 3 days past the procedure. I hadn't had any pain. Hardly any bleeding. And I instantly felt better physically.

Granted, the emotional pain runs deep and will take longer to heal from. But the D&C is behind me, and for that I am grateful.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Five on Friday

The week is over. Praise God. This week has been...lousy. But it's wrapping up in the best way that it could, given the circumstance, and for that I'm thankful.

Like I shared in my last post, I found out I miscarried this week. We found out on Wednesday, at what should have been our first prenatal appointment. Since then, there have been lots of tears, lots of anger, and lots of nerves as I prepared to have a D&C. For those who don't know what a D&C is, basically it's a surgery to remove the fetal tissue from the uterus. I opted to have that done because my body hadn't miscarried naturally, and I didn't want to have to wait to have it happen at work or something.

I'm planning to write a separate post about the process. I hope actually is that if someone else needs to go through it, that it brings them some reassurance and comfort that it'll be okay.

What I'll say here is that it went really well, and although there still is and will continue to be sadness, I'm very relieved to have it behind me.

Remember a few posts back when I posted about the Sara Bareilles' song "I Choose You?" In that post, I mentioned how it's a perfect proposal song. Well, apparently Sara and I think the same way! The official video for the song came out this week, and it is AWESOME. I dare you to watch this without smiling or tearing up. Also, I love her now even more than I did before because she chose one straight couple, and one gay couple. Go, Sara! Love this!!

We made some yard progress this week, which was really exciting. We've been in our house for almost 7 years (??!!), and it's constantly been a (slow) work in progress. The previous home owner had a lot of random gardens, that just didn't really work for us as non-gardeners with a 95-pound dog romping around. This week, we had a few stumps ground - two tree stumps, and a root ball from a bush we were trying to dig out. It wasn't super expensive, it was fast, and it made a big different. Win, win, win! Hopefully we'll get some nice weather soon to do some clean up and more seeding. Jeromy's talked about getting a little vegetable garden going again. That would be great!

Mother's Day is this weekend, and it's very bittersweet this time around. I have been really excited for this weekend for weeks, as we had planned to break our baby news to our parents. Instead, we've had to tell them that we were pregnant, but miscarried. Linnea has brought me a lot of comfort in these days. I am SO thankful to be her mama, and I hang on to strong hope that I will be a mama to another baby soon.

My parents are leaving for Italy this weekend...lucky ducks! I so envy my parents' travel. We traveled around a good amount growing up, but now that they are empty nesters and have some expendable income, they travel a lot. I live vicariously through their travel for now...and hope that Jeromy and I can do half the travel they do. Jeromy and I love to travel, and thankfully have similar travel "wish lists." What's on your travel wish list?

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Becoming a Statistic...

This day was much harder than I ever expected. It was a day that was supposed to be joyful...and exciting... and happy...and it was not.

Today I became a of the 1 in 4 women who have had a miscarriage. It is surreal to type that - and will probably continue to be for a while. Right now I'm still working on accepting that this is part of my story now.

Today we had what was supposed to be our first prenatal appointment with our second pregnancy. Entering into the appointment I was nervous. I was trying to brace myself for the worst, knowing that nothing with pregnancy is ever a given. But I was still assuming that everything was okay. Why wouldn't it be? I have been nauseous. I have been tired beyond tired. I have had a crazy strong sense of smell. I have been hormonal. I have been - and I suppose still am - pregnant.

But when it came time to look at our baby, it was immediately clear something was wrong. I should have been nearly 9 weeks along. The baby that was there was not a 9 week sized baby. It wasn't even a 8...or a 7 week sized baby. And even when we stretched the numbers to try to make them work, they didn't line up. We watched and we waited for a flicker of a heartbeat, but there was nothing there. Our excitement and joy shattered in an instant.

I felt like I was dreaming. I felt like I was falling off a cliff, scrambling to grab hold of something...with nothing to hang on to. I sat in shock while the nurse talked through the next steps, in disbelief that this was my life. I held back my tears as best I could...but didn't do a good job.

The nurse left the room and I crumbled into Jeromy's shoulder and sobbed. I sobbed for the baby I already loved. I sobbed for the dreams and plans that were instantaneous destroyed. I sobbed for myself. I sobbed for Jeromy. I sobbed because I'm not going to get my Christmas baby. I sobbed for the loss of hope that I felt in that moment. And I sob now.

Somehow I made it out of that office. I made it out to my car. I made it home. I slept and I cried. I watched stupid TV. I cried some more. We went to a radiology appointment later in the afternoon, which just felt cruel. I laid in a dark room, flashing back to our 20 week ultrasound appointment with Linnea. A time so filled with wonder...with amazement at seeing our beautiful, healthy baby.

This ultrasound was way less fun. We sat in silence while the tech took measurements. We knew. We knew that she wasn't finding anything different. When it was all done, she walked through the results. Everything was there...but the baby was measuring 6 weeks, 1 day. No heartbeat. Not viable.

So that's that.

Later, a conversation with the nurse practitioner about next steps. I will have a D&C in the nearish future. We will take it day by day. We will try to hope for the best. And we will continue to grieve for our baby.

I don't know who will read this. And truth be told, I didn't write it for other people. I wrote it for me. To process. To grieve. To remember, though I wish I could forget.

One day at a time...

Monday, May 5, 2014

Weekend Recap

We had a really good weekend. It certainly helped that the rain seems to have cleared out, and a bit of sun made an appearance. That has a way of lifting everyone's spirits - definitely mine!

Friday night started with a really fun night at the Midtown Global Market. Right when I got home from work we headed back out the door to the market for Family Friday with our Faith Group from church. We had a great time! Everyone got to pick what they wanted for dinner, and then we met up at a nice big table, that was actually pretty secluded and quiet - which is sometimes hard to find in a busy market!

We had a great night of conversation and catching up with our friends. As a group we've been together for almost 7 years! They are such dear friends of ours, and it's always fun to spend time together.

The whole group (though we were missing a family - missed you, Seieroes!)

We split some ice cream for dessert... :-)

We made it home for a bit of a late bedtime for Linnea, and then a traditional Friday night crash for me and Jeromy.

On Saturday we trekked over to Eden Prairie for our church garage sale. It was mostly a miss, but we did find a couple books for Linnea, and a fun little tent for her as well. After the sale, we made a couple other stops in the area, and then had Culver's for dinner (we are becoming a little obsessed...LOL).

We headed home for nap time. Unfortunately, Linnea had a bit of a cruddy nap. She fell asleep hard, but woke up after 45 minutes, and wasn't able to settle herself back down. So I gave in a bit and we had "quiet time" in bed. A little TV, and some rest. Quiet time is better than nothing, right?

We had a fun, unexpected surprise after nap time. Jeromy's parents reached out to us and said they were making an impromptu family trip to the Mall of America to go to Build a Bear, and ride some rides. Thankfully, we live so close to the mall that it was very easy for us to make a quick escape and meet them there!

We had SO much fun. Linnea loved choosing and making her stuffed animal. Of course this girl who loves her dog picked out the stuffed animal that looked most like Luther. Love that sweet girl! We printed off a "birth certificate" for "Luther Puppy" and picked out a Packer outfit for him, and we were on our way to ride rides.

Linnea had a GREAT time riding rides at Nick Universe with her cousins and uncle. They rode the big rigs trucks a couple times (per Linnea's request) and then the carousel a couple times as well. Linnea was all smiles, even with couple longer waits. We stayed as long as we could before heading home for dinner and bedtime. Jeromy was planning on going out with some friends on Saturday night, but it didn't end up happening, so we stayed in and caught up on Jimmy Fallon.

Helping stuff her Luther Puppy...

Super happy girl and her new puppy

Can you tell they are related?! Linnea and my niece Lille

Uncle C.J., Linnea, and Lille

:-) So happy

Riding the big rigs...

Hee hee...someone was so excited!

Sad that this is blurry, but I LOVE her face. This was what her face was like EVERY time she went around.

On Sunday, Linnea had a bit of a hard time. She woke up really early and it showed. After a difficult morning, we managed to make it out of the house and (barely) make it church...though definitely not on time. Linnea did well during church, despite her sour mood (she crashed in the car on the way there - not like her), so I think that helped.

After church we went to Costco to pick up some things and have some lunch. We got home for nap time (thankfully a better one). Afterwards, the weather provided for some outside time...hooray! Jeromy did a bit of yard work. Linnea and I went for a walk, and then played in the yard.

Yard work and play time!

It was a good end to a fun weekend. I hope you had a fun weekend too!