Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas Card/Letter

This is to serve as our Christmas Card/Letter, which we've never done before (at least not that I remember).

MERRY CHRISTMAS! We hope you've all had a wonderful year and that 2014 brings wonderful things!

Here's a little about what 2013 had in store for us.

Ella started dance in January and loved it.
She also turned 3 in March. She got to go to Lake Powell for her first time this summer and didn't want to leave.

In the fall she started pre-school and she's loved that as well (even though she never wants to go). She recognizes her letters and will spell things out that she sees (like STOP signs). She also took a dance/tumbling class this past fall and really enjoyed that as well, though we won't be continuing dance for awhile, especially while we're adjusting to life with a new member of the family.
She loves being on stage and has performed 4 times so far. Also, she can't wait to be a big sister!

Jer has been busy with starting his own comedy website featuring clean comedians (, managing some other blogs on a volunteer basis, going to school, working, taking care of Ella/me/the house, and being in the Elder's Quorum Presidency. He's lucky to have figured out what he wants to do for a career. He loves it so much that he does it in his spare time. He had a promising future at his work, but was suddenly laid off at the beginning of Dec. We were incredibly blessed to have a lot of people praying for us, suggesting places to apply to, and offering words of support. He was able to find a job within a week of being laid off!

I have had a fairly crazy year myself. After trying for over a year and a half, we found out I was pregnant at the end of May and found out it was another GIRL in Sept! We can't wait to meet her around Feb. 7, 2014. I sprained my back when I was a little over 3 months pregnant, so I have to be extra careful with how I move and what I lift, etc. I get to take Ella to dance and preschool; it's so fun to get to talk to her about what she's learned, or watch a new dance step she figured out. Things with my in-home job started getting more and more frustrating, so I began looking for a different job. I was lucky to find something close to home that had hours that worked for our family's schedule. I've really enjoyed the change, but it's also been very hard to leave home, and it's been really rough on Ella having me leave. Luckily that's coming to an end this week. After putting in my 2 weeks notice, Jer was laid off so I took back my notice. After Jer got his new job, we felt that I should re-submit my notice, so I did. I'm excited and nervous about my new life as a stay-at-home mom. I'm relieved that I won't have to leave my girl(s) to work anymore, and I'm really hoping I'll be able to get my house in order (although maybe not for awhile since I can't bend).

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Thursday, August 1, 2013


Big changes are happening around here.
As in body changes and work changes and school changes.

First of all, most people know I'm pregnant again, YAY! 13 weeks now, to be exact. Due Feb. 7.
Let me dive into this a little bit for a minute.
Many of you know that we've had infertility issues. We had surgeries and early miscarriages and testing and waiting and frustration before we got our miracle, Ella. This time around was a little simpler. We didn't have to do any testing, I didn't need any surgeries, and luckily we didn't experience any more early miscarriages (that we know of), but we did have to wait. It took a little over a year and a half. I know that's nothing compared to a lot of couples in our shoes. I know we're extremely blessed, I FEEL extremely blessed. But the waiting game is hard. It's made more frustrating when you're on progesterone which gives you pregnant-like symptoms too (which I was on for Ella and this baby). Every month I had to ignore what I was feeling because I knew it wasn't real, even though I hoped it was.
The week leading up to finding out I was pregnant, I felt at peace with Ella being an only child. I've never wanted just one child, I've never thought I'd have an only child, but I was feeling ok with that prospect for the first time in my life. Then I got the positive. I was shocked. And happy. And scared to death that I'd have another early miscarriage.
So far I've seen the baby twice and heard it once. Everything looks good! We find out the gender Sept. 19th, I can't wait.
Ella's excited about being a big sister, she talks about how she'll feed the baby and play with the baby and teach the baby...she's going to be such a wonderful big sister. There will be nearly 4 years between them. She's pretty sure the baby is a girl, but any time we suggest it could be a boy she can't seem to fathom that possibility. We'll see.

Secondly, work changes. For me, Julianna. I've been at the same company for over 10 years. 10 YEARS! It's a little crazy to think I've been there that long. At first, the idea of getting a different job scared me to death. I'm so comfortable working from home, I've been doing it for 5 years. I don't want to leave Ella (and the baby in the future). Applying and going to a job interview was a spur-of-the-moment kind of thing, I didn't think much would come of it. But I was hired, on the spot. I was so nervous and scared and worried I cried when I got home just thinking about leaving Ella (and the baby). I blame the hormones. I'm more comfortable and excited about the change now that it's sunk in though. And thinking about the reasons I applied in the first place make me happy to leave my current job (reliable work hours, reliable pay, no mandatory overtime, etc). It will be hard to leave Ella, but she'll be in good hands (her grandma's and one of our neighbor's). She'll get more attention while I'm working away from home than she has while I've been working at home, which is really sad to say.
So, my last day is tomorrow. I'm a little giddy. My first day is Wed, Aug. 7. I'll be working in the afternoon-evenings part-time. We're hoping that this won't be for very long though, the ultimate goal is for me to truly be a stay-at-home mom, but until then we do what we've gotta do. Wish me luck!

Third, school. Jer is still going to UVU, but I'm not talking about him. I'm talking about Ella! She's going to be starting preschool this month! I'm so excited for her and she's pretty excited too! It's a preschool in our neighborhood and she'll go for 2 hrs. two days a week. I think she's going to love being with other kids her age and learning fun, new things. She's also going to be starting back up in a jazz/tumbling dance class, so she's got a busy schedule coming up. Luckily all her stuff is in the morning so I can take her and spend time with her afterward talking about what she learned and all that good stuff.

We hope you're all having a great summer!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Reflections...What if

'What if' usually gets people into trouble. 'What if' can bring up painful memories. But, 'what if' can also remind you where you came from.

I was pondering a 'what if' recently. About 6 years ago I had my first uterine surgery. My world was completely upside down and whirling around me full of things I didn't expect. I was going on a journey I had NEVER expected to go on, one that will be continuous probably beyond my child-bearing years. One that has been ... difficult in many ways. My mom told me one time on the phone (when I called her upset and crying about how unfair everything was), that maybe I was going through this to help others. I was hurt and offended. Maybe I don't want to help others with this, how unfair for ME to have to go through this to help someone else? She also went on to tell me that God shapes us through our lives like a jagged rock that needs polishing to become perfectly round and shiny. Only He knows what we can truly become. Like a refiner's fire to make goes through much change, heat, pounding from tools. The rock and the metal go through difficult molding processes to make them what their maker's know they can become. I was upset about this too. Little old me? Being shaped in, what I felt was, a harsh way. I didn't want to be shaped and molded and tried. I didn't think it was fair for me to have to go through it. It was too painful. I didn't feel like I was strong enough to handle it.

But God knew I was.

Here I am years later. Everything I've gone through has changed me. I hardly recognize who I was. So young, so naive, so ... closed off to this world that affects so many (the infertility world if you didn't know what I was talking about). I look at our wedding pictures and just think, wow, you have NO idea what's headed your way. And good thing too, because not knowing about it until it hit and not knowing how long the hardest parts would last are probably a blessing in themselves.

So 'what if' my body didn't have the issues it had? 'What if' my first and 2nd pregnancies hadn't been miscarried? I'd have an almost 6 year old and an almost 4 year old. And who knows what else, maybe we'd be done having kids. But where does that leave Ella? I don't think I'd have her, or not the Ella that I have now, a different version. And those other babies just weren't meant to be, I really believe that. Our family is just how it's meant to be. We're happy. Happy-that's something that was hard to grasp 6 years ago in the midst of my confusion and pain and frustration and loneliness and..... everything.

Turns out my mom is pretty wise (of course), I have been able to help a couple of people, which ended up coming back to help myself (oddly enough). I've been lucky enough to meet some pretty amazing people through my struggles too.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Perfectionism: my disease?

This is what prompted me to blog. Ever since I saw it yesterday I've had a nagging feeling I needed to write.

This is true in so many ways, and as I put on my Facebook, it should read more like "All of us can't look good, it's the humans or the house." In my perfectionism I have to make sure people realize my family is part of me, and how they look and act seems to be a reflection on my abilities as a wife and mother.
I've been a perfectionist my whole life. Jer's been working with me since we got married, however, to make allowances for myself for not being 'perfect enough', or striving so much for perfection that it causes me ridiculous stress, especially when things aren't 'just so'. Learning to be ok when I don't have control has been difficult, especially with our unexplained infertility. I don't have what I expected for a 'perfect family' or a 'perfectly working body', but it has to be ok because I have no control over it.
Back to the meme... the looking good encompasses so many things in my mind, this isn't about me being superficial. Laundry done: to have clean clothes to look presentable. Dishes done: so we can eat food to stay healthy and strong. Exercise: to be healthy for my family and attractive for my husband. Clean(ish) bathrooms: so we can get clean and ready for the day in a clean setting. Weeded front yard: so we have a presentable looking house, even if it is just on the surface. Clean(ish) kitchen: so we can have a clean place to get our food. Doing all of these things takes time and energy, some things (maybe a lot) fall to the wayside on occasion.
The clutter and the crumbs, the sticky spots and the piles of toys mean someone lives here and has a busy life. It has to. If I were my friend I'd give allowances for her not having the 'perfect house' because both parents work and there's a busy 3 year old living there. If it were spic and span (where did that phrase even come from?) all the time then I'd be impressed, but think to myself 'how is that even possible? This can't be normal or healthy'.
I'm doing the best I can, but I'm extremely hard on myself. I don't have dinner ready every night for my family, I don't have a spic and span house, I don't have the energy to go on adventures every day with my daughter. BUT (this is something Jer keeps pounding into my head) I work (and get tired easily, as well as having a weaker immune system), we have a 3 year old (who is a master mess maker and can't clean too many things yet), Jer is in school (and as many people know, the king of creating clutter and piles of stuff). I HAVE to give myself allowances.

But then, my perfectionism starts in on me (in a nasty tone, of course)... '"Your house should be cleaner, you don't have as many kids as everyone else, you don't work as much as some people. You should have dinner ready every night, why can't you even do that-it's not THAT hard. You should take your daughter out to do something almost every day, you're being a lame, bad parent for not. You should have the backyard perfect as well as the front yard, just because you have weak wrists doesn't mean you can't take care of it. Jer works too, why can't you get EVERYTHING done ALL the time, you're home anyway." I could continue, but you get the point.
It's mean, right? I look at that and think 'I would NEVER talk (or think those things) to anyone else like that, why am I so rude and judgmental to myself?'
So, every day, I struggle. Some days the perfectionism wins and I feel awful, and some days being nice to myself and making allowances wins. I'm not perfect, and that's ok.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Liebster Award

I was nominated for a Liebster Award by my friend Katie, who crazily enough, I've known since we were about 12!
Anyway, Liebster is German for "favorite", and I'm a little surprised that I got it, especially considering I don't blog very often!
Along with the Award are some tasks:
1. Post 11 random things about myself.
2. Answer the 11 questions my nominator set for me.
I'm supposed to do 3-5(below) as well, but I'm still sick and have a bit of a fuzzy brain, so I'm skipping this part. If you read this and want to do it, then go ahead and consider yourself nominated, you should be awarded with something just for the fact that you still read my blog in the first place.
3. Create 11 questions for my nominees.
4. Nominate 11 other bloggers with fewer than 200 followers (no tag-backs).
5. Go to each of their blogs to tell them about their nominations.

So here are my Random Facts:
1. How old were you when you got your first kiss, or alternatively, how old were you when you first thought you were "in love" with someone?
My first kiss was when I was 16. He went and asked my friend to Prom right after, nice guy, huh?

2. What is your favorite color for a front door?
I've never really thought about this, but I really like red doors when I see them (as long as they match the house they're attached to).

3. What song are you slightly embarrassed to admit you love?
Hmm... "Butterfly" by CrazyTown. I used to love that song. Now that I'm older I realize how...not so good it is.

4. If you could do anything you wanted for a day, what would that be?
Eat chocolate and sleep.

5. What fictional character are you in love with?
Will Tippen (Bradley Cooper's character) from "Alias" (I've been watching it on Netflix lately).

6. With whom are you most likely to argue... and least likely to argue?
Most likely to argue with Ella (which is ridiculous, I know). Least likely to argue with my mom, we've always gotten along really well.

7. What is your favorite holiday, and why?
Independence Day. I love the parties that are associated with it, the weather is nice, everyone's in a good mood because it's summer, the fireworks are fun (unless it's a week night and the neighbors are setting them off at midnight), and we're celebrating our country's history and freedom!

8. What is your favorite thing you have created yourself?
I'd say Ella, but I wasn't the only one that had something to do with that...
I really like some of the decor crafts I've done at Super Saturday. I really love a picture of the Mt. Timponogos Temple that I made a frame for. Also, I really love the baked goods I make that turn out really tasty :)

9. What was your favorite toy as a child?
I'm not sure, but I think it was the sit'n'spin. I wish I had an adult-sized one.

10. What is something that you'd like to improve?
Patience. My health. Being a more fun mom.

11. What act of service might you perform for a total stranger?
Hold a door open, give a compliment, pick up an unnoticed dropped item.