Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Guest Post & Happy Thanksgiving Wishes!

Today I am guest posting over at Mandy's home. I hope you will go check it out.  I am so thankful for the wonderful women I have met through blogging since Summer and I hope to continue to build on those relationships. Happy Thanksgiving to all of my readers I wish you happiness and good health!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Things we don't talk about enough

Yesterday on my way home from work I stopped at the grocery store- it was a mad house of course being the week of thanksgiving and around the holidays people always seem a little more stressed and a little more crazy, especially on the roads. It is sad really, but it is the truth. While driving home, I thought to myself, I really hope that if something were to happen to me, my husband and family would make sure my kids were raised the way I want and continue my legacy. Yes, I said legacy, because being a mommy is just that, it is my legacy. I hope that God forbid something were to happen, they would know all about me.

These are the things, the things we don't want to talk about, but the things we need to talk about. Do we have a guardian assigned if something were to happen to both of us, yeah of course, but the maybe even harder thing to think of is something happening to just one of us. My husband is amazing, don't get me wrong, I mean I am one lucky woman and my kids are extremely lucky to have him as their dad, but there are things that the mom does that the dad just doesn't think of. It's true.

Life Insurance, college savings, dance lessons, swim lessons, instruments, school pictures and more. As women, we kind of just take everything on, it is in our blood, it is our natural ability as moms. As a mom who takes on a lot, I try to have as much of this (college savings, life insurance, etc) taken care of as possible to avoid stress if something were to happen, but as my kids grow they will need someone to make those cute favors to pass out at school and to sign them up for activities and make sure they are in a good school, etc Do they need those cute favors? Nah, I know they don't, but I want them to have them. I know that my husband will do an amazing job raising them without me if he was faced with that situation, I just want to make sure if something were to happen he would also try his best to continue to do the job I would have done. Even if he scribbles on some little favor tags or puts mis matched bows in G's hair, the point is that he would try and tell them, you know if your mom were here she would make sure your bow matched perfectly or that she made you the cutest label. I want them to know about me, to know how much I love them and what I would do in different situations.

It is super scary to think about these things and I pray to God that we are both blessed to live long, prosperous lives with our children and each day we are around, as a family, is such a blessing. What about you? Do you talk about these things?

Monday, November 25, 2013

So. Very. Thankful!

I can't believe we are here- the week of Thanksgiving.  Lately, I have been feeling a little overwhelmed and behind. Behind in cleaning, cooking, TV shows (lol), blogging, everything!  We have just been so busy, then on top of everything, we have all been sick so it has been Dr. visit after Dr. visit.

I am looking forward to a slow and SHORT week at work and spending some quality time with my family this week/weekend!

God has been so good to us. So very good! I am so beyond thankful for all of the amazing blessings in my life.

I am extremely grateful for my children. My family is complete and I love it! I am so thankful for my two beautiful kids, thankful to have both a boy and a girl, thankful that they are healthy, thankful that they are happy. Thankful for the science that brought them to us through IVF. Thankful for our careers, which allowed us to pay for that science and not live in a cardboard box. Thankful for my body, for tolerating all of the hormones, shots and manipulation that it had to endure and accepting the beautiful embryos which are now our babies.

I am also so incredibly thankful for my husband. He came into my life at a point when I had given up on love and showed me what it was to stick by someone and love them unconditionally. He is the most amazing father to our children and has a heart of gold.  As I go through life and see others and their relationships, I become more and more thankful for my own.  When seeing other people's lives, you have to remember you are looking through the snow globe seeing their best picture and not all the in behind the scenes stuff. I know every relationship is different, and to each is own, but I am so grateful to have a husband who so genuinely loves spending time with his kids, who enjoys going to the grocery store as a family, who helps in the kitchen and with baths and every in between.

Family. Oh family. I am so blessed to have my wonderful family close by. To have my mom (Granny) as the hired help and nanny of my children. To have big thanksgivings and Christmas's. Family is such a blessing!

Health.  This year my husband and I ran our first half marathon and we are running our 2nd on Thanksgiving morning, I am so incredibly thankful for my health. I have been through my share of health obstacles and to be healthy is a huge blessing, not only for my health, but for the help of my family! Yes, we have had to deal with croup, bronchiolitis and even hair tourniquets, but overall we are so beyond blessed to be living healthily!

These are just a few of the things I am feeling thankful for. What about you?

Friday, November 22, 2013

Five on Friday! Cheers to the freaking weekend!

Man oh man, what a week it has been!


HAIR TOURNIQUET. Ever heard of it? I had, but never expected it to actually happen and cause so much damage so fast! Well, we ended up at 2 hospitals on Tuesday night with Miles and after he endured a lot of pain, our 5 month old baby is showing improvement. Yes, I made the husband and I wear masks while sitting around in the waiting rooms with TONS of sick kids.


Our little dude turned 5 months old this week. Wow, time flies!


Today is Gianna's Thanksgiving party at her school and I am so excited to get over there. She (well me) made these fun treats for her teachers and friends!


Did you see those labels? Yeah, I designed and cut those on my new Silhouette Cameo. This is a whole new world for me and gosh, being a mommy is the best!


Thank goodness for the weekend! I need it! Cheers everyone!!!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Mommy Instincts- Do not doubt them! Our Hair Tourniquet story

This has truly been a week from hell. We have been fighting these colds for a couple weeks now and I started by taking the kids to the doctor on Monday, they got the Mr. Neb mask so we have been doing that 4 times a day along with Miles physical therapy exercises. My week at work started off on the wrong foot too. Then, Tuesday morning I was changing Miles and I noticed he had some gunky stuff behind his little curled toes. I thought it was weird enough to have Allan look at it, but then he talked me down, the old "he's fine, it is just lotion that got gunky from the dryness" blah blah blah. Ok, I guess he is fine.

Later that night when it was time to get the kids ready for bed, I decided it was a bath night for Miles. I go to give him a bath and start my full inspection. I look at his toes and his 3rd and 4th toe are huge and super red. I start freaking! I have Allan come look again and I get the old, "he's fine, let's just wait until morning and if it is still bad we can bring him to the doctor."  This time, I wasn't easily persuaded, I knew something was wrong. I called the doctor and left a message for the on call nurse. As I frantically waited for them to call back I called my step mom who has a good friend who is a pediatrician. I texted a picture of his toe and asked her to call her.  Then, the on call nurse calls back and asks me what is going on and if he is cranky, eating normal, or running a fever. Well, he hasn't been eating quite normal, because he has bronchiolitis, no fever, but a little fussy from the bronchiolitis too. She told me to take him to Children's Healthcare immediate care center right away, it looks like he is starting to get an infection. Around this same time, I heard back from my step mom who's friend said the same thing.

We call my mom and have her come stay at the house with Gianna now who we just put to bed for the night and we leave to go to Children's. Well, we all know it is sick season, so we waited for about an hour and we get back there for vitals. They tell us it looks like Miles has a tourniquet from a string from his sock. They check for blood flow and get us back to see the doctor right away. The doctor comes in and examines him and says it is a hair tourniquet and wrapped around 2 days which explains why I thought his toes were stuck together-- they were! He said it was the tightest he has ever seen and immediately sends us to Egelston Children's Hospital in Atlanta. Now, I really start to freak thinking Miles is going to lose his toe. The doctor by us says he just doesn't have the right lighting and Miles needs to be looked at by a plastic surgeon who has a fine eye and needs to be numbed up.

We get to Children's Atlanta, put on our masks to protect us from all the diseases that are lerking in that place and wait, again! They again get us back pretty quickly and they even put Miles in a hospital gown. The doctor comes in and tells us it is his first time ever seeing it wrapped around 2 toes and the tightest he has seen. He takes a tiny needle like thing and starts prying at his toe- with NO numbing medicine Miles starts going crazy, screaming, crying, kicking, you name it. It was painful to watch. He starts breaking up the hair and unwrapping it from his toes. Immediately one toe starts to look better. He gets done digging and tells us it is a good thing we caught this, because he could have lost his toes by the morning. Then, he says he is going to prescribe a cream and antibiotic oral medicine and we will be able to go soon.

We get Miles dressed and wait, but then after hearing he really could have lost his toes, we feel stressed. I examine him some more and still don't feel confident he got all of the hair. His one toe is still very large and red. The doctor comes back and agrees, he takes another look. Then, he asks for assistance from a very large man to hold Miles down as he pokes and prods with this needle some more. It is literally like torture at this point, even the man holding down my 12 pound baby is sweating as he watches the doctor dig and bend his toes back to get these hair particles out. Finally, he is done and says he feels like he has done all he can and puts a little heating pad on his foot to hopefully get some circulation back and make it look better. Well, it doesn't start looking a whole lot better, but the doctor tells us "he wishes he could send us home feeling better about it, but he does feel good about it". He tells us to keep a close eye on follow up with Miles physical therapist and his pediatrician. The more people who check it out, the better.

Oh, while we were at Children's Atlanta, the doctor asked us if he could take pictures and record what he is doing with Miles toes to publish for other doctors. He assures us his face won't be posted, but he thinks he could help others with this. He says he has never seen one so tight and never around 2 toes at once. We agree of course, anything to help another baby.

So the moral of this story is to never doubt your mommy instincts. I am so very grateful for mine. I knew something was not right with my son and I will always be a mommy who over reacts versus not reacting when it comes to my children. Have you ever heard of hair tourniquets?  They are a real thing and can happen with strings too. They are common on fingers, penises and toes. Usually it is mild and you can cut the string yourself, but in our case, it wasn't. When they occur, they can cause damage very quickly. All of this happened to us in less than 24 hours, so pay attention to your kids, examine them and never ever trust your instincts. You know your child better than anyone!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Let them sleep, for when they wake, they will move mountains

Sleep. It is a beautiful thing. For me, it is a needed thing. 7-8 hours preferably.  When I got pregnant with Gianna I knew right away that getting her to sleep was very important to me.  I am not a big book reader, but I did my fair share of google research on different sleep methods and learned what I was comfortable with.

When she arrived, I went through the normal sleep deprived period and it was rough. Rough was an understatement.  I was struggling with breast feeding and feeling anxiety from that.  She was dropping weight, she had reflux and colic and it was rough.  Did I mention that? Well, the thing was I was going back to work when she turned 3 months, so I needed to get her sleeping better so that I could get some rest too. So after about a month of serious tiredness, I started getting into somewhat of a schedule, just starting out slow, basically with scheduled feedings rather than on demand feedings.

After a couple weeks of scheduled feedings, I started a little more of a routine.  Eat, play, sleep.  So after meals, I would spend time sitting up for the reflux, then back and tummy time, then sleep time.  During day time sleeps I would try to keep the majority of them somewhat lighted and somewhat noisy, so that she would learn the difference between day and night.  I would also try to stick somewhat closely to her eating schedule, offering a paci between feedings.

As this was going well and her night time sleep was progressing I decided at nine weeks to move her into her crib. We would keep her in the room with us until her 10:30 pm dream feed, then transition her to her crib for the remainder of the night.  She did amazing with this, she was sleeping through the night within a week. 7-9 hours!  Around 11 weeks we started adding baths to the night time routine.  Not every night, but almost every night before bad we would give her a quick bath.  I was prepared {somewhat} to do the cry it out method in order to get her to self soothe and start sleeping before I went back to work, but I am so thankful that she decided she liked sleeping as much as mommy and did it all on her own.

Since then, she has been the most amazing sleeper.  No. Complains. What. so. Ever.  She sleeps great!  She has slept through teething, through colds, through sicknesses, while traveling, you name it.  She is a true trooper.  So having my second, I thought, "oh gosh, we are going to be cursed, there is no way we will have another great sleeper."  Wrong.

Miles sleep pattern took a little different spin. He went from only sleeping 2-3 hours at night to BAM. Sleeping through the night.  When he started, he wasn't even 10 pounds, which I always thought was some sort of magical number for sleeping.  Gianna had more of a gradual transition.  I don't think he is going to be quite as amazing as she was, he does wake up when he is sick some right now, but hey, I understand, he is still so, so, so great!  We will see if I am saying the same thing in a year after teething, etc, but so far through sickness, growth spurts and traveling, he has done a pretty great job.  I am also writing this after a night of waking up every hour with him because he is sick, but that's ok, because he is sick and it is rare and he doesn't keep you up long, he just wants his paci. I am hoping as he starts rolling and being able to grab his own paci his sleep will get even better, hoping.

I am so thankful for my two beautiful sleeping babies.  I hear horror stories and they freak me out. Literally.  So yes, I would love to snuggle up in my bed with my kiddos every night, but that is one of the sacrifices I made to get them into a routine, get them on schedules, sleeping in their own beds and enjoying it. Zzzzzzz.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Five on Friday!


 I am officially 29! My last year in my 20's and I plan to rock it out, after I officially kick this nasty cold that is. This weekend is all about celebrations. Family birthday dinner, Adult night out to co-celebrate my birthday and a good friend's birthday and then Miles Baptism on Sunday!


As I mentioned in {one}, Miles is getting baptized. We decided to do just family this time and keep his attire nice and "manly", but still adorable. We decided to put him in this and I love it!


Brrr, it is getting cold outside. I love this time of year for so, so many reasons. One being boots, leggings, hoodies and cute hats like this one I scored from Gap! Ones with pom poms are my favorite!!


Ugh, so although this is my favorite time of the year, it is also my least favorite. One kid with croup and one with Bronchitis, yuck! 2 parents with we hope are only colds that are finally starting to get better. We are looking forward to all getting healthier!


Did I mention it is my birthday week?! Yeah! Cheers to that, I am only working a half day today, then off to pick my girl up from school, have some lunch and go get a massage. Life is good!!

Cheers to the weekend everyone!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

So What Wednesday, Birthday Edition!

Life After I Dew

This week I am saying so what if,

- I am shopping way, way too much! I am super excited about seeing Gianna on Christmas morning with all of her presents and Miles too, even though he will more than likely enjoy the paper even more.

- I missed my long run this weekend, I was sick, I will get back to it this weekend (I hope).

- I plan on eating cake at least once, probably twice a day for the remainder of the week. It's my birthday!

- This is my last year in my 20's. I plan for it to be a great one and I am going to do everything in my power for that to go down.

- I am completely behind on household chores, we have all been sick!

- I have been sucking at cooking lately, I will get it together soon. Maybe this weekend?!

- It's going to be super hard to work today, all I can think about is my sick kiddos, my birthday (whoop, whoop), where I want to eat dinner tonight, LOL and my new Silhouette Cameo!!!! YAY YAY!!!

Happy Hump Day!!

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Best and The Worst Season

Whew, I am glad the weekend is over! Woah Woah, hold up a minute, did I really just say that? The girl (me) who lives for the weekends is glad it is over? Yep, you heard me right. Man, Usually I LOVE weekends. It is my opportunity to spend TONS of quality time with my family, have some fun, get out for a long run and get some things done. Well- this weekend we did none of that!

We had a house full of sick people. Gianna is struggling with Croup. She went to the doctor Friday, got some medicine, struggled Friday and Saturday, then Sunday we spent 4 LONG HOURS at Children's Healthcare. She had a chest x-ray because her pediatrician wants her to visit an ENT and since she was there, they did this while she is sick. She also had a terribly painful steroid shot in her leg. I felt terrible for her, but am praying it helps make her feel better today.

Miles so far is still just struggling with a cold and we are hoping and praying we can kick its butt without it turning to croup. My husband is now on the upside of his cold and I am right at the peak of mine. It sucks to be sick and sucks even worse to be sick and have sick kiddos at the same time. No. Fun.

So here is to looking forward, to a good week of hopefully recovery. It's my birthday week and Miles is getting baptized this weekend, so we have a lot of things that we need to feel better for. It is the best time of the year for so many reasons, but man, it is also the worst, sickness E-V-E-R-Y-W-H-E-R-E!!

Hope everyone is having a great Monday!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Five on Friday {& what I am loving}

So this week, I have had a serious shopping addiction, online shopping of course! With my birthday, the holidays and the kids, I have been a shop-a-holic. Uh-oh!!

So here are some of my purchases and things I am loving!


 these shoes- both from Target. The leopard flats for mommy and the cute converse bunny sneakers for Gianna for Christmas. LOVE!!


I have been desperately needing some Yoga appropriate tops. Ones that aren't too tight, but aren't loose either, because they come flying down during downward facing dog, so I snagged one of these that I am hoping won't show the fat, but won't fly up either.


Umm, did you see the Clinique bonus at Nordstrom? Go. Check. It. Out. Great deal!!


Ugh! Another Cold has struck the Changar family and it has got us good. When they say this is the best, but the worst season, they aren't joking! 


We are going to see Santa this weekend, can you believe that?! Less than 50 days till Christmas!!!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

A little more about me


Born and raised and still living in Georgia! Did move north of the city to the beautiful city of Cumming, love it here, but do think it would be an adventure to live somewhere else, right now having family close by trumps all that coolness though.

Was a serious over achiever until 6th grade, then became a "just get by-er" until after I graduated college and decided to get my MBA. Wish I would have been more focused, but I did ok.

A chub-ster with low self confidence during my adolescence.

Picked up love of running or hate of running, lol, during senior year of high school and the pounds started shedding.

Dated my high school boyfriend for 7 long years, wouldn't say they were all wasted, I learned some great lessons and gained my self worth, but it was definitely not the healthiest of relationships. No ill will now, glad it brought me to where I am and wish him the best.

Met my husband at work. Turned him down several times, went out finally and instantly connected.

After about 4 months of dating, we moved in together. At 9 months of dating, we got engaged. We had some "big things" happen early on that showed us it was the real deal! When you know, you know!

Got Married a year after getting engaged at an amazing destination wedding set in Key Largo. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!! 70 of our closest friends and family at a beautiful beach resort, private ceremony and huge party. 24 hour bar afterwards. Fun had by all! One of the greatest memories of my life.

Started IVF 9 months after getting married. We don't procrastinate, ok! Immediately got pregnant with our beautiful daughter Gianna, born in October.

Got pregnant again in August 2012, misscarried.

Went for round three with another frozen embryo and again, pregnant! This time it stuck and we found out we were having a boy. After lots of crazy complications, our little boy arrived June 18th, 2013. Our family was complete with 2 kids and 2 boston terriers later.

Can't wait to find out what is next.

Oh the Joy! (in their faces)

This year we decided to have Gianna's birthday party at a farm. We invited family of course and then some of her closest friends. 1 family ended up having to go out of town and another had a sick child, so overall 4 of the 8 kids we invited couldn't show up for one reason or another. The night before the party when I learned that a couple of the kids weren't coming, I got very disappointed, I had already made goody bags, ordered a big, fancy cake, booked a farm and now there were only going to be 4 of her friends showing up, I was totally bummed out, but I quickly shook it off. The weather forecast took a quick turn and it was looking like it was going to be a bit cold outside, this was also a bit of a downer and I was worried people wouldn't enjoy themselves.

The day of her birthday party, we started with ballet class, came home to quickly change and then off to the farm to set up. When we got there, we learned there weren't going to be pony rides like we were expecting because of a problem with a vendor. Bummed again! But then, I saw my daughter, the excitement in her face, she did not have a worry in the world, why couldn't I take that spirit on for this very special day? Done. Off she went, Gianna was already so excited just seeing the open field.

She quickly ran off with daddy to play on the giant inflatable slide and jumpy houses, while mommy stayed to greet the guests. Then, Grandpa & Grandma Jennifer arrived with Aunt Cole Cole, then Aunt Alanna. Gianna was so excited, they were all off playing. Later, Granny & Leah, two more of her very favorite people on this planet arrived. Her other friends trickled in and everyone was off playing, enjoying the slightly chilly, but beautiful day at the farm. Then, we gathered the group to go on our tractor ride. We all sat close as we strolled through the farm and fed a huge herd of cows. Then, the farmer who was driving had everyone on the tractor, about 40 people or so, sing Happy Birthday to Gianna. At this moment, I looked at my sweet daughter and the joy in her face. It was amazing! I was speechless. She didn't need anyone else there, she didn't need the big fancy cake, these were all just "icing on top". She was happy as can be just having everyone sing happy birthday to her.

Then, we went back to our party site and lit the candle on her cake and had everyone sing to her again. She loved it! Then, off to play some more. She went down the slides with Grandpa, Daddy, Aunt Cole Cole, Leah and all of her friends. She jumped in the bouncy house, fed the animals at the petting farm, enjoyed running around with all of her family and friends and just had the most amazing time ever! During these moments, I snapped back to reality. We are so blessed, so blessed to have been able to throw her this amazing birthday party, so blessed to have so many family and friends come out to celebrate with her, blessed to be able to buy her a big fancy cake and all of the cool presents, but she didn't need any of that. She would have been super happy at home with a candle and a cupcake. All she needed was to feel special, to feel loved and wether there was 1 kid there, 20 or none, we would have made sure she felt nothing less than the most special little girl on the planet on this day, because we love her, we are her parents and that is what we do, because..she is (to us anyways)!

The joy in my kids faces is my joy! It is the top reason why I live, why I strive to be better every day!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Torticollis & Thankful Monday!

At Miles 4 month appointment, our baby boy was diagnosed with Torticollis. Ever heard of it? I hadn't, until then. It means, "twisted neck" and 1 in 250 babies are born with it, and 20% of those have hip dysplasia, which thankfully he has not been diagnosed with at this time. So what does this mean? Right now this means a lot of physical therapy appointments and a lot of at home exercises for our little man.

The torticollis is also causing him delays in reaching his miles stones like rolling over and causing the back of his head to remain flat. Apparently, the muscles are being pulled down and not allowing his head muscles to form properly. So we are hoping fixing one thing, corrects many!

During his first physical therapy appointment, they pushed him hard to determine which side was worse. The physical therapist said it was usually quick to see which side they were favoring, but with him it wasn't because he seemed to be stiff in both sides. So 2 hours later and the loudest cries I have ever heard from him, they determined he had right torticollis. He has his second appointment today, which daddy is bringing him too and hopefully over the next few weeks we will see some major improvements.

Our whole journey with our little guys was a little rough. From starting with IVF, to being told on NYE that he likely had downs syndrome, which thank God was not the case. To lots of bleeding in my pregnancy early on, to Intrauterine Growth Restriction, high blood pressure & pre has been full of worries by mommy, daddy and the whole family. I am so very grateful for all of our blessings & today I am feeling especially grateful for him. He is such a sweet, mellow, loving little guy and I am so blessed to be his mommy and while this is another bump in the road, he is healthy overall and we intend to keep it that way!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Five on Friday!


Can you believe it is November? Wow! Time is flying. My birthday is this month, and thanksgiving, which is one of our favorite holidays. Lots to be thankful for!!


Ever heard of Fresh 20? 20 ingredients, fresh food and spices, 20 minutes a day plus up to an hour prepping on the weekends and you have yourself a week of tasty dinners. I haven't signed up yet, but got a 3 meal trial I am going to try next week. yum!


Another Halloween has officially come and gone. We had so much fun this year, Gianna was able to say trick or treat and really get into this fun holiday. Here is a little teaser of our Sofia the First, or Princess Gianna and her bunny Clover.


The ipad air came out, I think I am going to be putting it on my birthday wish list. Going to the store tonight to "hold it". 


Looking forward to an awesome weekend! Cheers everyone!