Jan 142019

My husband got me a subscription to Munchpak monthly snack boxes for Christmas. I will be opening each box with my daughter Scarlett and trying the treats inside. I’m new to the video game so hopefully they will be better over time. Please don’t mind the bad angles that are unflattering (most of them). I created a YouTube channel to host the videos more easily. I guess we will see how to works out. Round 1 was pretty good. Scarlett liked that most the items were sweet stuff.

Dec 302018

My daughter is quickly approaching a year old and the year has gone by in a blink of the eye.  It seems like yesterday I was swaddling her up tight and praying she would sleep for at least two hours.  Now she’s walking and getting into everything but I’m still praying for her to sleep well.  I posted before about the things they don’t tell you about having kids; Mom guilt (which hasn’t changed), crazy hormones, breast feeding, and love of your child.  As time has gone on I’ve learned so many things about being a Mom.  The things they don’t tell you is that you can’t begin to understand how hard it is until you do it.  People can tell you how hard it is to go without sleep but until you’ve actually taken care of a baby when you haven’t slept for almost 24 hours you don’t get it.  You find a new kind of strength.  They don’t tell you that you will find a way to get through it.  Whether it is family, friends, or your spouse helping you will survive.  You might not feel like it at the time but you will get there.  I think the first 4 months are probably the hardest.  I was afraid I was doing everything wrong.  I was recovering from a c-section, I wasn’t able to breast feed, and I had postpartum depression.  If you don’t know what depression and anxiety feel like it’s that lying voice in your head.  You’re not good enough, you can’t do this, it won’t get better/easier, you’re doing it wrong. At the worst part of my depression I thought I would never feel better, and I was ruining my daughter’s life. When you are in it you can’t see out of it.  I got help for my depression and I’m doing much better now.  The thing they don’t tell you is that postpartum depression doesn’t care who you are.  It has nothing to do with being strong or not.  You might not realize what is happening until you’re deep into either. I had to give myself permission to not be okay.  I felt like I was letting my baby, and husband down but in truth I was doing the best thing for my family.  I couldn’t be a good Mom or wife if I didn’t change something.

The thing they don’t tell you is that watching your child grow and learn new things will become your favorite thing.   You will become that “parent that”.  The parent who thinks your child to so smart, strong, and a super baby.  But who cares.  The joy you get from watching your child play with a water bottle is pretty great.  I can’t tell you how many videos and pictures I have on my phone.  I want to save the moment and feeling forever.  I’m a boring Mom but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

The thing they don’t tell you is that all the “firsts” will be so amazing that you will forget the hard times.  The first smile, words, steps, and holidays will fill your heart up so much you won’t be able to imagine it getting much better.  We just celebrated my daughter’s first Christmas.  I wanted everything to be perfect; the tree, the gifts, the clothes, and plans.  I made myself a little crazy about it.  It wasn’t until I sat back and relaxed that I realized it all didn’t really matter.   Being together with my family is really all that mattered.  After rushing around to get everything just right and making to it church to get our seat I finally let it all set in.  I had my husband off work and was at church with my family.  I started to get emotional as we waited for church to start. I realized I have what I always dreamed of, a loving husband and a child.  Celebrating my daughter’s first Christmas with my husband was one of the best days I’ve had.  My heart was so full of love and joy.  They don’t tell you how amazing things can be and I’m grateful for it.

May 162018

Sometimes you just need to stop and enjoy the small things.  Last night was not a good night at my house.  My daughter woke up more than she usually does and fought me through her feedings.  There was a storm which scared one of the dogs so she had to be in the bed with me.  When I say with me I mean, on top of me.  She has some weird issues(long story) so she wears a cone most of the time so you can imagine how fun it is to pick up a 60lbs dog with a cone on at 2am to put her in the bed and then have to lay on top of you and smash her cone head into your face.  So it was long exhausting night that was followed by a long morning of my daughter not wanting to nap or eat her bottles.  After fighting to get her to eat again and getting her ready for her nap, I started to rock her before I laid her down as I usually do.   I was thinking about how I needed to eat, wanting coffee in a bad way, wondering if I could take my headache medicine yet, wondering if the long night would become a fussy day, thinking about everything but holding her.  Then she started to talk to me. She often times will “talk” as a way to put herself to sleep.  She was babbling away and I replied I usually do.  She just kept it up though. After  5 minutes had gone by I decided to sit rock her.  The longer she talked the more I realized that she just needed me.  She needed to hear my heart beat in my chest, hear my voice, and feel my skin on hers.  In that moment she needed me to stop worrying about everything and just be there.   My daughter didn’t stop “talking” to me for 15 minutes or more before she drifted off to sleep.  I almost missed out of the sweetest voice and moment because I wanted to get on with my day.  I’m glad I took a breath and let her tell me what she needed.  After I laid her down I realized my headache was gone. That’s when the water works started. I cried tears of joy because I’m so lucky.   I didn’t let the usual fussiness get the best of me and I got to enjoy precious time with my little daughter.  She’s growing up so fast and I know won’t get to rock her forever.  She taught me a very important lesson this morning, just stop and listen and everything will fall into place.

Apr 302018

You might be a Mom if….

You can’t remember the last time to went to the bathroom yourself but you know your baby’s weight, height, last feeding, and dirty diaper.

You can do just about anything with one hand.

You’ve thought a kangaroo pouch would be really handy.

You look forward to a night out without your baby and then 15 minutes later you miss you baby and want to go home.

You feel guilty leaving your baby at home with Dad, even though he’s a good parent.

You make up songs about toots, baths, eating, burping, changing a diaper, wearing clothes, life in general.

You’ve said “Are you pooping?”

You’ve thought a kangaroo pouch would be really handy.

You’ve sniffed a diaper to decide whether there is poop inside.

You sing just about everything to your baby to make/keep them happy.

You’ve cried holding your baby because they are just so cute and precious.

You’re idea of making dinner is getting the box of cereal out the cabinet.

You’ve lost weight because you haven’t sat down to eat a full meal in a long time.

Sleep is something you day dream about.

Mar 222018

The saying it takes a village to raise children is an understatement.  If you really think about all the things that go into raising a well rounded child it’s so much more.  For me it started with a village of medical staff at the hospital that was required for my c-section.   People have asked me about how it was having a c-section and I keep thinking back to a random thing, why didn’t I take my socks off.(I’ll come back to the socks)

They say there is no shame in child birth.  I would agree with that.  After the first couple hours you don’t really care who comes in and checks you out.   I was in active labor for around 10 hours before my c-section so I got the whole experience of contractions.   Once it was decided I needed a c-section it was a like watching a well oiled machine.  The nurse call sounded the preverbal alarm and my body was almost no longer mine.   I already had an epidural so the anesthesiologist just had to give me more meds to numb me up more.  The room had many different medical staff coming and going doing different things to get me ready.  When I got into the operating room they had to prep my stomach to some crazy blue soap.  I was laying there thinking about how excited I was to meet my daughter but I was still very scared.  My epidural had worn off a couple things during the day so I was worried about being able to feel them cutting into me.  I was laying there and I realized I could feel my feet.  I asked if that I was ok and they said yes.  They told me to move them.  I did but I’m not sure if I actually did or not.  Then I was afraid because I could feel my shins.  I asked if that was ok.  The doctor said it was ok and asked if I could feel other things and I couldn’t so I was good.  The anesthesiologist told me they would be a touch test before starting so not to worry.  When I was about to ask about something else he told that they had already started so not to worry.   Everything went great with the c-section my daughter was healthy and I was fine.   It wasn’t until hours later when I was back in my room that I thought about my socks.  The nurse had told me I could keep my socks on when I got to the hospital and got in my gown so I did.  I realized that when they took me to the OR that I had never taken them off.   Every village needs an idiot and I was it that day.  My village of medical staff in the OR was probably wondering why this lady was laying there pretty much naked, blue belly, and her socks on.

The village of my family is by far the most important though.  You need the village of medical staff but they are really only there because you’re paying them.   The real stuff comes when you call in favors.  When I was in the hospital still after my c-section I was pretty much worthless because I couldn’t get up and move yet.  My sister was my saving grace.  My husband and I were both tired beyond belief because they have the baby stay in the room with you now and not go to a nursery. (That’s a whole other story) My sister said that if I needed it she would come and help us so we could sleep.   I thought I would be in fine but I was not.  My husband was not either.  He does not work well without sleep and we were not doing very well.  My sister took the day off work and came to the hospital to help.  This would not be the only time I’d call her in for help though.   Two days later after having a really bad night I had decided to back down and give my daughter a pacifier.   The problem was the hospital “does not have them to give out” at 3am but could be bought in the morning at the gift shop.  That was not going to work, so I messaged my sister at 3am to see if she could go by my house and bring over a pacifier.   Without skipping a beat she came over with the pacifiers.  Over the next weeks I learned how great my village really is by family coming over to help watch my daughter so I could shower, nap, or eat.  They brought food, send gift cards for food, and sent gifts.  I will be the first to say I could not do it alone nor would I ever want to.  I know I’m very lucky to have family and friends in town to help me.  I know that not everyone has what I do and that my daughter’s life will be much richer because of it.  It really does take a village to raise a child but also the knowledge to accept help and the grace of God to give you the people to lend it.

Feb 212018

If you are pregnant you’ve been told a million pieces of advice from family, friends, and even complete strangers at the store.  I would say many of things I was told were helpful but nothing really prepares you for having a baby.  The things people didn’t tell were the things I really needed to hear though.

People don’t tell you about Mom guilt.  I got the flu when I was 36 weeks pregnant and lost 8 lbs.  I got the flu shot like I was supposed but still got the flu.  I was scared out of my mind.  I did everything the doctors told me and they said everything was okay but guilt like you would not believe.  I took a pain pill during labor, guilt. The baby’s heart rate was dropping after contractions, guilt.  The doctor decides c-section was the safety thing, guilt. Well stress, anxiety, guilt, sobbing like a baby, guilt, anxiety, guilt, guilt, guilt.  My daughter had the cord wrapped about her neck twice (once wasn’t enough) so that’s why her heart rate dropped after my contractions.  There wasn’t anything I could have done to change that but guilt all the same.  I didn’t make her flipping around in my stomach but Mom guilt makes you think you could or should have been able to changes things.   Mom guilt makes you forget about all the things you gave up during pregnancy to try to make your baby healthier.  The anti-depressants, caffeine, medium-rare steak, over easy eggs, lunch meat, alcohol, sleep, good cold medicine, etc.  Mom guilt is something I wish I would have known about.

The hormones! Pregnancy hormones are crazy but postpartum hormones might just be worse.  I’ve cried more times since giving birth than I did my whole pregnancy.  You’re tired and taking care of newborn baby but you’re a crazy person.  I could not control my emotions.  My poor husband hates seeing me cry and I tried to explain to him I was really okay. I do understand why he would be worried when he walks in to find me sobbing while I’m using a breast pump.  I wouldn’t have believed that crazy lady either.  The hormones also make it so you can’t really think complete thoughts or sentences.  My husband has on multiple occurs told me to “Use my words!”  I didn’t really understand I wasn’t making sense until he made it aware to me.   I realized it more fully when my cousin who also just had a baby wasn’t able to communicate clearly either.  If someone would have listened in on the conversation we had I don’t think they would have thought English were either of our first languages.  Her and I spoke the same half thoughts so we were good.   I was an emotional nightmare for at least 2 solid weeks.  I had to stop watching tv shows that normally would not have bothered me.  Any shows with babies in the story line have pretty much been off limits.  I’m 4 weeks postpartum now and I’m starting to feel like a sane person again. 

Breastfeeding isn’t the only way to go.  The hospital may push things and Mom guilt will tell you otherwise but formula is okay.  I learned this the hard way.  My daughter didn’t latch and I wasn’t able to pump and produce enough milk for her.  I made the tough decision to stop fighting a losing battle and switch to formula.  This was a really tough thing for me to accept but I’ve been much happier since doing so.  The important thing to remember is that your baby is getting fed and that’s the only thing that matters.  If you ask most Moms that are breastfeeding it isn’t the sun shine and rainbows experience that they pictured.  It doesn’t work for everyone and if doesn’t work for you it is okay.  The Mom guilt on this one still is haunting me but I’m learning to deal.   The good news is that they make this crazy thing called a Baby Breeza that is like a Keurig for baby formula.  You put the formula in the top and water and it mixes and heats a bottle for you. It makes those 3am feedings so much easier.  I can hold the baby in one arm and simply press a button to make a bottle.  It’s amazing!

The most important thing they don’t tell you about is the love.  When you hear your baby cry for the first time, and hold them for the first time it’s like nothing you’ve ever felt in your life.   The love you have for your child is so amazing I’m not going to try to put it into words.   The way I feel about my daughter is unreal.  I don’t think you really believe your parents when they tell you that they love you not matter what until you have a child of your own.  The love and emotions that go along with being a parent are crazy and I appreciate all the crap I’ve put my Mom through over the years even more.

Nov 062017


My mom gives expecting mom the Mother’s Manual. This one is extra special because my aunt gave it to my grandma while she was pregnant with my mom.


Saying like “everything happens for a reason”, “good things come to those who wait”, and “patience is a virtue” may be great saying but when you’re trying to start a family they do not comfort you.  For those who have not had issues trying to pregnant it may seem like a great thing to say.  For some people those things might comfort them but for me it did not.  My husband and I started trying to get pregnant in April 2016.  For me it was not easy. I’m a person who takes anti-depressants and sleep aids so I had to begin with getting off some serious medication.  After a great deal of thought and prayers, I made the decision to go off all my medicine before getting pregnant.  My goal was to go off everything and try to stay off it while pregnant.  My husband and I decided that was the best thing for us.  Let me say that again, it was the best thing for me.  Everyone makes decision about their pregnancy and how they are going to do things.  I wanted to reduce the chances of the baby having issues in this way but I am not a doctor nor do I look down on anything who makes other decisions.   My goal was to go off the medicine and try to stay off it until the baby is born.  Goal being the key word.  I had prepared for not being able to do this.  I worked closely with my doctor to get off the medicine and had steps in place to try to set myself up to be able to do this.  Going off my medication is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.   The emotional journey has been very difficult but I’ve been able to weather the storm so far.  My marriage and family have also been able to make it through as well.  Un-medicated Sarah is not the best person to be around.  There were time when I doubted if I could do it or if I should keep trying.

After the medication situation was handled we began trying to get pregnant.  I read tons of things and downloaded apps to try to help.  The first few months weren’t too bad because I just thought my body was just adjusting still.  When six months had come and gone I was beginning to doubt things.  I knew people who got pregnant right away and I could not understand why still was happening to me.   As the one year mark grew closer I made an appointment with a doctor to check to make sure there wasn’t something else I could do.  The doctor told me from what she could tell I was healthy and there was no reason she could see why it wasn’t working.  She referred me to an infertility doctor.  I was scared and thought things would only get worse from here.  In the time before my appointment I doubled down on the crazy fertility things I tried.  I drank green tea, took “special fertility supplements”, and prayed that this would happen.   When it came time again to take my pregnancy test for the month, I forced myself to do it again.  I had already prepared myself for another negative.   I sat and waited to check it and after the time was up I looked down to see a very faint line.   I could not believe it!  I read the box and googled faint line.  Everything I had read said that a line is positive even if it was not dark yet.  

I decided I needed to be sure before telling my husband so I bought a test that would say yes or no so there would not be any question.  It came back positive as well so I started to accept that it had finally happened.   My husband works third shift so I waited for him to wake up to tell him the good news.  He was just as excited as I was.  Our dream was finally coming true.  The time of my pregnancy was very interesting though.  We were due to close on a house in a couple weeks, and I was set to take one of the hardest classes at a summer class.  We decided to only share the news with a couple of family members at first because I was not very far along and if something were to happen I didn’t want to have to deal with that.  When I told my family I cried each time.  I was so happy but I’m sure those hormones placed a part too.   I could not believe it had finally happened.   I joked that I just needed to make an appointment with a infertility doctor for things to work out.   That first month I was an emotional wreck.  I cried at everything and did not handle the stress of moving and my summer class very well.  My poor husband probably thought I was never going to be a sane person again.

I took tests weeks apart to see the line get darker.

I’m now 28 weeks along and starting my third trimester.   I’ve been lucky and haven’t had morning sickness or many symptoms.  I volunteered to get ultrasounds by college students to get more chances to see my little miracle.  I feel very blessed that I was able to pregnant on my own.  I know it doesn’t happen so everyone and that each time it does it should be cherished.   It has become clear to be that everything does happen for a reason, good things come to those who wait, and patience is a virtue.   My prayers were answered but just not in the time frame I wanted.  The truth is that the time is really great.   We moved into a bigger house, and I’m going to graduate from college a month before the baby it due.  God’s plan is something that is hard to see and understand but putting my faith in him is what had gotten me this far.  I’ve been able to stay off of my medication and the baby is healthy.   I can’t wait to welcome a baby girl in January and see where that journey takes my family.

Nov 162016

The 2016 election cycle was pretty crazy.  I don’t think anyone could have imagined how this would have turned out.  I’m glad it’s all over.  The best thing to come out of all of this nonsense is the the Joe Biden memes about things he’s going to do around the White House to mess with Trump.  Enjoy!


May 312016

s-l300“Drink Water! Hurry up, Drink! Put your canteen over your head when you’re done. Hurry up private I don’t have all day.” I can remember having those words being screamed at me in the summer of 2003 at basic training like it was yesterday.  I was 18 and had never been away from my family for more than a week.  I did my training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri aka Fort Lost in the Woods.   Being from Southern Indiana the weather in Missouri wasn’t much different than at home.   The idea that you have to stay hydrated was drilled into me.   At the time I didn’t thinking how the Drill Sergeants were just trying to have another reason to yell at us.  They told us we don’t want to fall out and become a “heat casualty”. They would yell to drink water and we would reply Beat the Heat Drill Sergeant Beat the Heat!”  I’d never really been a fan on water and drank multiple Dr. Peppers a day.  Around five years ago I decided to cut out “cokes” as us Southern Indiana folks refer to them as.  I decided to cut out caffeine and my beloved Dr. Pepper.  It was rough at first but I’m glad I did it.  I will have the occasional coke but I generally don’t drink them.  I now drink 100 ounces or more of water a day.

I know what you’re thinking, that’s a lot of water.  It seems like a lot when I write it down but really isn’t.  I drink Ice Mountain bottled water, each bottle is 16.9oz.  If I drink a bottle with each meal, that’s 50 oz already.  Since I’ve starting doing hot yoga it’s become very important to drink plenty of water.  When I first started hot yoga I never thought I’d have enough to not feel like I’m dying of thirst.  I bought a Liquid Savvy’s 32 oz Stainless Steel Insulated Water Bottle that keeps my water cold through my entire class at hot yoga.  It’s pretty awesome.  I’m recently getting to the point where I can get through a class and not feel as if I were going to burst into flames and die of thirst at the same time.  If I’m doing a long class that’s 90 minutes long I’ve drank my 64 in a class when the room is full of people and hotter than usual.  I’ve been going to hot yoga just about everyday so with the class alone I drink 64 plus ounces.  I try  and hydrate throughout the day so I don’t feel bad after class.

I learned many things that summer in 2003.  How to take a 5 minute or less shower, to function without sleep, how to eat in 5 minutes or less, if you have a chance to go to the bathroom take it, how to shine boots and iron uniforms, and that people will steal anything, even your white granny panties you have to wear.  My Drill Sergeant of course was right and I need to Drink Water.  During yoga the instructors usually say to take a sip of water, which in my mind that means Drink Water!!!

Apr 292016


With summer just around the corner and I’m trying to get my “beach body” ready. This year I set a goal of running 5 races and a half marathon.  I’m doing good so far with 3 under my belt already and a race set for May. I’m really working on losing weight and get into shape.  I’m never going to be a tiny skinny girl, my body just isn’t that way.  I have big legs and that isn’t going to change.   I can work at trimming down and toning.  My friend Erin told me I should try hot yoga because she loves it.  I enjoy running and usually at least do a mile or so.  I was skeptical about it and worried how I’d do in class.  I still agreed I’d try it out.   I’ve heard horror stories about hot yoga.  I could picture myself drenched in sweat and laying there like a beached whale.   I did a year in Iraq so I figured hot yoga would be fine.

My first class was 65 minutes long class and wasn’t too hard to keep up.  I watched other people and Erin to see what I was supposed to be doing.  They told me that the goal for your first class is to stay in the room the entire class.  I was able to do that.  A few days after my first class my sister Mary asked if I wanted to go to class with her.   I’d already worked out with weights and cardio for 2 hours. I thought no worries I’ll be fine.  I was not fine.  I repeat, I was not fine! Rule #1 of Hot Yoga is to know how long your class is. Mary and I went to 6:15 class and it was packed. We almost didn’t have enough room for everyone. Little did we know the class was actually an hour and a half long.  I kept looking at my watch thinking is this class ever going to end? It finally did and I peeled myself off the floor and filled my water bottle back up.  Rule #2 if you’re going to run and do hot yoga in the same day, run after yoga.  I’ve made myself kinda miserable because I pushed too hard.

I go to classes at Yoga 101.  They told me about a challenge that would be starting in April.  The challenge is to do 40 classes in 60 days.  After the 90 minutes class trauma I took a few days off from class.  I’m not doing too bad right now.  I have learned some things since beginning hot yoga; 1. Drink water all the time.  I usually drink a good amount of water but I’d increased my water intake a lot because of yoga.  2. Bring a big bottle of water with you.  The average 16.9 bottle of water that you usually grab it’s enough for the entire class.  I’ve been filling my camel-back bottle that’s 32oz and drink all of it or close every class. 3. Bring a towel for your mat and one to wipe yourself off with.  If I don’t dry myself off multiple time during class I can’t do some of the poses because my legs become slippery noodles. 4. Let your guard down.  The instructors all say to only do what your body can do right now.  I’m very competitive and I’m trying to not get down on myself because I can’t do something.  5. Child’s pose is your friend.  6.  You will get better faster than you think.  Today I completed my 6th class in a row.  I can tell a difference already in my flexibility and balance.

I wasn’t sure if hot yoga was going to become part of my workout routine in the beginning.  I’m hooked now though.  I’m still working out some kinks like how much water I really need to drink or with eating before or after classes. I’m still trying to balance running and yoga.  It’s going to be interesting to see how things go this summer.