Thursday, January 28, 2010

No guilt fudge aka raw fudge

Amazing fudge treat without the guilt. I found this recipe on of course my favorite blog progressivepioneer.com and I just had to try it. I am trying to eat more raw foods in my diets so this fits right in. Kirk LOVED it and all the flavors it had.

1 1/2 C. coconut oil (if it's cold, soften it up a bit to make blending easier)
3/4 C. agave or maple syrup
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 C. almonds (ground into flour; if you use a blender, be careful not to over blend or you'll get almond butter! Sometimes I grind it lightly so there are still small almond chunks in the fudge)
1 C. raw cacao powder (you can find this and the agave at Whole Foods or similar stores or online at places like Azure Standard)

Mix it all up on high speed (I use the whisk in my KitchenAid). Pour it into a glass dish of some sort and let it chill in the fridge. It will set up and be hard, like fudge, but will soften if left at room temperature. It's the coconut oil that makes it solid.
In this picture it is not totally set up but we just could not wait to give it a try. Yummy!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pain free birth

So you wanted to hear it so here you go….
Why is it that women love to talk about their birth stories? Maybe because child birth is so empowering.
When I was pregnant with Myla (she was my first) people felt they needed to tell me all the horrible things that happen during their labor and that labor was really really hard. I went into having Myla scared and I did not have the understanding I have now about labor and what our bodies were designed for.

A short version of my birth story with Myla:

My water broke at 1 am, mind you Kirk and I were still awake watching a movie (dumb). I was so excited about having a baby that I called Kaiser and of course they said that I had to come right down. Kirk (having this be his third child) said when I told him my water broke that we were in for a long night and that we should try to get some sleep. That would have made to much sense. I packed my bag and off we went. I sat in a bed for hours not able to get any sleep. My contractions started but were not very close together (since I was sitting in a bed and not able to walk around) so they started pitocin. Pitocin by the way not fun! Anyway needless to say I got an epidural. I was totally numb and could not understand how to push since I could not feel anything. I had oxygen on my face while I was pushing (for three hours). Having her be my first I will always remember the feeling of seeing her for the first time. Hearing her sweet cry and feeling so grateful for my Father in Heaven for giving me such a wonderful gift. With that being said there was so much I did not like about my birth with Myla that when I found out I was pregnant with Sariah I was determined to have a different birth.

My ideal birth would be in the comforts of my own home. Since that is not an option I wanted to find something that would work and be educated so I could understand what my options were in a hospital and how to make my birth the way I wanted and felt was right.

Sariah’s birth story:
When I was five months pregnant my pelvic bone broke. It made walking very painful and sleeping at night, switching from side to side was almost impossible. I would scream out at night as I switched sides.

I went into labor on a Sunday morning. It was a great morning. Since I could not walk around or stand (the pressure was too much on my pelvic bone) I spent the morning on the couch. Kirk would come and sit by me and then go and play with Myla. We went to the hospital after laboring at home for three hours. Kirk, Myla and myself went to the hospital and my mom and sister met us there. When I got there I was a four and I was pretty happy with that and knew it would only be a few more hours. My sister was going to take Myla home with her but since everything was so calm she decided to stay for a while. During each contraction I would focus on my breathing and trust my body. I did not allow fear to enter in. My family would be talking quietly during each contraction which was just enough distraction for me and it worked perfectly. Between each contraction I would talk with my family and laugh and we really had a nice time. I think where birth becomes painful is when we fear what is coming next. That the pain is only going to get worse. transition is coming….. the pain is so bad….. When we allow our minds to think about these things we forget that God made our bodies to have children. Fear and faith can not coexists.
I wrote a very detailed birth plan and part of it I asked that the doctors or nurses to not ask about my pain level. They love to do that and it makes it hard to focus on anything but the pain.
If you have had a child before or understand how birth works you probably know the signs of when you enter transition. I knew when I entered transition but I did not allow my mind to think about it. I just kept breathing like I had been all along.
The midwife came in and checked me and I was a nine, she said that Sariah was face up and she wanted me to take a shower and see if I could get her to turn over. I had really strong back labor but I found a way to sit just right in bed with pillows behind my back that I did not feel the back labor at all. The only “pain” I experienced was when I tried to stand up and having a broken pelvic bone and she was so low that I had to sit right back down. Just standing up for a second was enough to get her to turn over and be in the right position for delivery.
I told the nurse it was time to push and she said no you are not ready yet. The doctor just checked you two minutes ago and you still need to progress a little. So I said ok and started pushing. Sometimes we know our body better than they do. I was making jokes even while I was pushing. I had the chance to deliver Sariah myself. That was amazing! If you have not done that it is soooo worth it. She was born into the arms of her mommy. Sariah’s birth was perfect. I felt so empowered that I could have a baby on my own. Pain free, no drugs and the way I wanted it to be.

I wanted to do a drug free labor more than anything. Kirk thinks pain meds have their place and purpose. So I think part of my desire was to prove Kirk wrong. I know that sounds bad. I am very stubborn and wanted to prove not that it matters but I wanted to prove I could do it.

Really it could have been a once in a lifetime experience and maybe it was just per luck.
The advice I could give would be to trust in your body, do as much research as you can about birth, and do not fear something this amazing. You will not die from the pain. Every second of discomfort is so worth it when you hold your little baby in your arms for the first time.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Last minute vacation

There is something to be said about the ability to run away for the weekend at the last minute. No planning, no over thinking it, just a weekend away.


This weekend we went to Monterey, CA. Crazy thing is I have grown up in California and Kirk has been here for maybe 10 years and neither of us have ever been. We are both drawn to the ocean and every time we leave we both say how amazing it would be to live somewhere by the ocean.




The famous Lone Cypress Tree at Pebble Beach









We had the chance to go to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. It is really pricey but worth every second or hour in our case that we spent there. Between two days we spent 6 hours there and still did not get to see everything. It was a great activity for our family, with the big age gap in kids we always struggle to find activities that everyone will enjoy. We all LOVED it!
My favorite at the aquarium were the jelly fish and sea horses.















Sariah LOVED the penguins and they loved her too.














Now the beach. Ohhh how we love the beach. Our favorite thing to do it wake up early and go to the tide pools during low tide. It is so fun to see all the underwater creations we miss out on here on land.















Myla being totally girly about daddy putting a crab in her hand!







I love our new lens on our camera. It is a telephoto lens and I took a million pictures of the ocean. Kirk had to keep reminding me to take pictures of the family.












We also visited Carmel (that will be our next place we stay), and Pebble Beach.

We were suppose to go to Hawaii this Friday but had to cancel it because of Myla. So this trip helped us feel a little better and gave us a chance to enjoy some of the many beautiful things God has created. Great trip!

Favorite blog!!

My favorite blog of all is Progressivepioneer.com. She just blogged that she is pregnant with her second baby (she will be doing a homebirth, so jealous) and is doing a great giveaway for the whole set of Hypnobabies Home Study Course. Sariah's birth was totally pain free and I'm hoping my next will be the same but I am part of me is worried about it being just a one time thing to have a birth that perfect. So I thought I would throw my name in the hat to win the giveaway.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Finally!!!

So it has been a YEAR since a friend of mine took some family pictures of us. I have been meaning to print them and hang them up but I never knew what to do with them. So for Christmas I picked up all the frames and got everything printed out. Here is what Kirk and I came up with last night and I think it turned out pretty nice. We have been married 5 1/2 years and finally have family pics on our walls! Amazing.

They are not great pics. It was hard to take pictures of the collage with our table lamp hanging down but you get the idea. It really looks so cute in person!














This is the wall next to the front door. It is updated just in time to add a new kid.






Sleeping in the buff

Tonight I went in to check on the girls after they were asleep. When I walked in their room I noticed a diaper on the floor. That was not there when I put them to bed. I did a little investigating and sure enough Sariah had taken off her pj's and diaper crawled back into bed and was snuggled under her blanket in the buff. So cute! They never cease to amaze me!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Working hard!

Kirk's boss had a great idea, lets go hunting! So off Kirk and Benny went Turkey hunting yesterday. This was their find. The men were so proud of themselves. I was just grateful they cleaned it and cooked it at Benny's house and did not bring that mess home! Yuck!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Today's breakfast

I made these waffles last week and LOVED them and so I made them again this morning. Thought I would share the recipe. Also with the size of my family real maple syrup is just to much money and all the other syrups have HFC in them so I always to homemade. It only takes a few minutes and you can make big batches, it stores really well.


Ingredients
2 eggs
2 cups whole wheat flour

1 3/4 cups milk or I did 1 cup buttermilk and 3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil or for a healthier choice applesauce
1 tablespoon organic sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Directions
Preheat waffle iron. Beat eggs in large bowl with hand beater until fluffy. Beat in flour, milk, vegetable oil, sugar, baking powder, salt and vanilla, just until smooth.
Spray preheated waffle iron with non-stick cooking spray. Pour mix onto hot waffle iron. Cook until golden brown. Serve hot.


Yummy!!

Birthday party at grandma's

Catching up on pictures.

Here is the pictures of Myla's birthday party at grandma's. Just what Myla asked for.... A princess birthday cake. Every four year old needs an appetizer, right? Made from black olives, cream cheese and carrots. They even tasted really really good!

I love this picture of Myla, she looks so grown up!
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