About Me

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Hi I’m Jen- I'm one lucky lady to be married to the most wonderful man, Jason. I am a mother to three beautiful children, Grant, Norah, who was born with hydrocephalus, and Mason. I love spending my time with my family. I also like to challenge myself with new things. I'm on a constant quest to become more organized, it may never happen but it's a dream. I currently work part-time as a RN in an emergency department. I love this journey of life that I am on with God by my side, knowing that all things are possible when you Believe.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fall Photos

As promised, I have some fall photos to share. There's a whole lot of cuteness coming your way right now.

Now off to go get ready for our Halloween Fun tonight!

Monday, October 24, 2011


A new hat for Grant, made with love by his mommy!

Yes, I straightened the curtain after I took the first picture and realized that it was all wonky (We were busy watching the street sweeper pick up leaves this morning). Then Grant being a spunky 3 year old is really into sitting still for pictures these days, so these two pictures is what he gave me. He does love his hat already, he told me so. :)

Norah Picks Her Outfit

This morning as I was nursing Mason, I sent Grant to his room to get dressed, then I asked Norah to go pick out some clothes for the day. I didn't fully expect her to do it, but it was worth a shot to see what happened, right? So off she crawls to her room smiling and saying "all right mommy." I smile listening to her, she moved the step stool to her dresser. I hear the drawer open, I can imagine her peering into her drawer from the side. A couple minutes pass, I am now making smiley face with Mason, he's happy now, a full tummy will do that. Norah emerges from her room, this time scooting forward on her "bootie" and carrying a skirt and a cardigan. I smile in the success of this and praise her. Then I tell her she needs to find a shirt to wear under her cardigan. She leaves the clothes on the floor and quickly turns and crawls back into her bedroom. I begin to wonder what shirt she'll bring, knowing that the shirt that goes with her skirt is in the hamper. Again I listen to the sounds of her hunt for a shirt. I remind her she needs to find a shirt, the I hear "Probably, probably. . . . . . .this one!" Out from her room she comes quickly, I smile she did find a shirt. I helped Norah get dressed and told her she really needed to find a pair of tights to finish her look. We walked back into the bedroom one last time and opened her drawer, she immediately grabbed her purple tights. Perfect, don't you agree.

It inspired a fall phote shoot in our back yard . . . . . . . . . . more pictures from that later this week.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Happy Birthday, Jason!

Monday we celebrated Jason's birthday.

Yes there was a cake.

Follow by a gift I found for Jason on Etsy, what do you think? I can't wait for the first snow fall and see Jason going down the sidewalk sporting this hat.

Then the kids gave there Daddy a gift they worked on all week. Grant loved helping paint the canvas' and Norah kept trying to peek at them. Look at the corner of Norah's you can see a faint hand print that Norah left after checking on them after finishing one of the layers of paint. Then there is Mason's hand print, let's just say I am redoing his again to see if we can get it to look like and actually hand.

Happy Birthday, Jason! I am so thankful to have you as my husband & love getting to celebrate you.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Corn Maze

Last weekend we welcomed fall by visiting a corn maze. I love going through corn mazes, and could have spent all day getting lost. However, this time the practical mommy in me said that I must keep us on the route to finish because you never know when Grant will have to go to the bathroom or Mason will demand to eat.  So in order to navigate the maze the best, there were also "cornumdrums" to answer, it added some fun and learning to our outing.

It is always a hard decision to leave Norah's walker behind because she loves her independence with it. With the uneven terrain of the corn maze, we decided to leave it this time. She asked to walk and happily grabbed onto Jason's hand to walk with him down the path. My heart melted as the went down the path hand in hand.

We had so much fun navigating our way through the maze. Also, there was no shortage of painted plywood scenes to take you picture in.

Happy Fall!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

72 hours later!

This morning at 9:30 am Norah and I had a date to remove all that EEG stuff.

Let's just say it was easier to keep her happy when the electrodes were being placed than when I was taking them out. If I believed in karma I would say this is payback for all the patients I have left EKG patches on in the past. I dislike taking them off my patients, it causes them pain and I don't like to inflict pain on my patients.So while the pictures depict a happy little girl, let me tell you it was noisy in our house, because on top of Norah letting me know she dislikes the removing of the EEG, Mason was reminding me it was time for him to eat.

Norah did great with her EEG, there was just a couple times very she showed signs that she wanted to take it off. She liked to show off her backpack she had to wear (I might just have to go find her a cute little backpack now). While I think it's great she didn't have any of her episodes, if she is going to have them it would be nice to have one while wearing the get up. So here we are with everything packed up and ready to drop off on Monday to have it read.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Too Young For Facial Hair?

Jason recently added the GEICO BroStache App to his phone, let's just say the kids, especially Grant, love playing with it.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Continuous EEG

For the next 72 hours, this is the look Norah is sporting.

A little fuzzy I know, but that smile melts my heart.

Norah is undergoing a continuous EEG to see if there is abnormal brain activity that may be causing some of her episodes (remember those ones that we started experiencing about 9 months ago with the tired days, head frequently on the ground, followed by vomiting, irritability and a sleepy girl). I am frustrated with the medical system that is so far behind. We had to find a new neurologist, because our old one left. The hospital was treating Norah as a new patient thus delaying her care. Had we been able to have this done back in April and May when Norah's symptoms were at their peak, it may have proved to be more helpful. Lately,  Norah's "off" days seem to be further apart between episodes and for that I am thankful.

Hiding under her scarf are 20 electrodes that are hookup to the recorder in her backpack.
Thankful we are able to do this from home instead of at the hospital.
If I had to go with my gut I think Norah either has slit ventricle syndrome (SVS) or is experiencing migraines. Getting a doctor to diagnosis SVS is difficult, and treatment for migraines is someone as young as Norah is giving her a daily medication to see if we see a change. There are two options for medications, the first is an antihistamine and the other a beta blocker. I vote for no medications at this point, or seeking out an alternative therapy. Hmm, lots of thoughts swimming around, so will stop there tonight. Hopefully, I will find Norah with all her electrodes still attached in the morning.

Day 6 ~ City Museum

Our last day.

Jason spent the morning taking his Microtik certifications while the kids "helped" me pack up our hotel room. Once we were packed up, I took the kids to Sonic for lunch and slushies while Jason was finishing his last test. Grant had been wanting to go to the City Museum. He had seen a brochure for it earlier in the week and kept asking everyday if he could go jump in the balls. By the pictures I knew this was not a place I could go navigate by myself (I was right). Jason and I decided we would spend the afternoon there before we headed home. It would mean a late night, but I was looking forward to including Jason in one of our outings especially after the previous night at the sculpture park.

The City Museum is a fun place to go explore and I would recommend it to anyone going to St. Louis. However, it could drive you nuts, a definite conversation about stranger danger and who to ask if you lose mom or dad is necessary. I would have loved to go with just Jason and have fun being a kid again without responsibilities. This place has tunnels, hidden passageways through the entire building - so cool! Slides are abundant and no shortage of things to spark your imagination.

Time to hit the road and head home.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Day 5 ~ Art Museum/Forest Park/Sculpture Park

So today was an interesting-ly loooong day. After five days of being on the go, Grant and Norah are tired, Mason has developed a new habit of waking up once (or twice) in the middle of the night to nurse, and I am running low on some important good mommy attributes like upbeat energy and patience.

Grant and Norah slept in a little later so I looked at our choices of things to do then choose the art museum and a walk in forest park. A little culture then fun walking on the trail. The art museum is free to visit so if the kids didn't like it no money lost.

 Well I have a feeling not many parent bring kids to the art museum because I witnessed a few employees near panic just watching me enter the museum. Grant and Norah were enjoying looking at the contemporary and modern paintings with  me when we were told to step back from the painting, mind you we were already behind the line. Not to mention the unsolicited comments I received from other visitors of the museum. Including, your crazy, my kids are grown and I still would never let them in here, three young kids are not going to enjoy anything here. My favorite I must say was the employee who had asked me if we had been to the zoo yet. It was just down the hill and had free admission as well. This statement was filled with undertones of I think you should go now. So I walked around one more time just to drive them crazy. If my gut feeling was my kids could handle being in an art museum, I would not have come, trust me.

Grant and Norah were not interested in looking at the camera for a picture at all.
We headed out into Forest Park and let Grant roll down the hill in front of the museum while I pushed the stroller down, we meandered through the park and back around to the car.

Jason was back a little early so we headed over to the sculpture park for some more running around before we headed to dinner.

I found it appropriate that Norah was picking her nose while standing in a nose. Once again Mason enjoyed sneaking in a nap while we explored. It was nice to have Jason along as well, despite being with him on his business trip it felt like we barely saw him.

Monday, October 3, 2011

A Case of the Mondays

The vacation post are being interrupted by a case of the Mondays.

“But he said to me, `My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” ~ 2 Corinthians 12:9

I tried to keep up with vacation posts. But blogger didn't agree with me Friday morning. Then a super fun day (more on that later this week) turned into a long drive home - 2am Saturday morning long. I was up by 5:15am, and working by 7am. I enjoyed being supermom last week, having it all together, being called a hero a couple times, often hearing I was insane or crazy by the random people we met during our adventure.

Now the house is a mess, there is at least five loads of laundry to tackle, dishes to do, meal planning and grocery shopping is beckoning.

Mason is 4 months today, celebrating by being incredibly fussy, which is very usually for my happy baby.

Norah is morning the loss of her paci, she threw it away in St. Louis. I intend to hold strong and not give it back, but trust me right now, I feel like walking back into her room and giving it back.

Grant thinks that everyday should now include a big outing like everyday held for him last week. Now I am trying to remind him the pleasure of enjoying our beautiful backyard on a spectacular fall day holds an adventure for him.

I want to get our house painted yesterday, but the painters I have contacted are less that helpful at returning phone calls and wanting money from us to do this job. If the house isn't painted this fall then we won't put the house on the market until next May at the earliest, I don't know if I can be patient for that.

Jason's job is wonderful for flexibility but it is also a newer business which brings and often comes with stress that we feel. I pray that it works itself out.

For me, I want to curl up on the coach, shut the outside world out for the day, catch up the happenings of the weekend by looking at FB, reading the news and watching the highlights of all the great Wisconsin sports I missed this weekend while taking care of patients. And while I love being a nurse, my job has been less than desirable recently.

Now to be me, I need to end this on a positive note, that I why my husband married me, or so he tells me. I am ultimately an optimists, I have to believe in the good of people. While often my job leaves me questioning this, I do believe things could just be so much worse, and am happy where I'm at right now. So I will now try and push my case of the Mondays aside and get to it. Hopefully the week will end with my parent visiting which will be wonderful. Now time to snuggle with my baby, this time is precious and fleeting.

This smile knows how to chase the Mondays away!