Sunday, March 13, 2022

Hello from a Busy House!

 I'm rarely on this little page these days, but had to hop on to pay a visit to a place I used to love sharing about our lives, until Instagram came along, really! Haha. Instagram became the place that's easier to share, but had to share a few recent photos while I was here. 

We're busy with two kids learning and growing daily, in a newer season with me staying home while Nick works from home. It's a well used house these days! 

As spring approaches, we have enthusiasm to start our flower garden and very first vegetable garden and dream of what the year might have in store. 

I've been participating in my local MOPS (mother's of preschoolers) group and have enjoyed meeting so many other great moms. 

Halloween Oct 2021 (Bear wearing Ainsley's old pumpkin costume, swoon!)

Enjoying a warmer winter day

Christmas 2021, and both kids' first time meeting Santa. Berringer cried hysterically one second after I snapped this pic ;) Ainsley was so sweet and felt so proud telling Santa what she wanted for Christmas. 

Florida for a girls trip!

The best time with these girls. 

Snow! In Texas! So fun. 

Berringer's first snow. He's yelling "HI!" to his sister inside the house:)

Happy Spring, y'all! 

Saturday, November 13, 2021

Berringer's Birth Story: Friday, November 13, 2020

I wrote this post about 9 months ago! And on his first birthday, I guess it's time to hit publish to celebrate this sweet boy. Tons of photos are at the end, but there are a lot of words first ;). 

The first pic of my guy. He's not so sure what just happened. 


February 2021 -- I'm here to jot down details of Berringer's birth before I forget them. It was another eventful birth! (Why aren't my births like the ones on "a baby story"?! Lol). But so thankful for a healthy baby and healing in the weeks since delivery. 

My pregnancy was uneventful. I had more morning sickness this time until about 16 weeks, then was uncomfortable from 24 weeks on with pelvic pain and such. In the 3rd trimester, my belly skin was so stretched it burned and was painful! I wasn't sleeping well and was definitely in pain 24/7 by the end. 

I was getting to the point where I wondered if I should just schedule an induction to not go as overdue as I did with Ainsley (41w4d). But, I also really wanted to try for as natural of a delivery as possible, depending on how quickly things may progress. I made my list of questions for my 40-week appointment and started some dinner in the crockpot I'd finish when I got home (spoiler alert - it turned out I wasn't going home anytime soon! haha). 

I went into my 40 week midwife appt (at 40w3d) not feeling very well. The night before I wasn't feeling well either, but my blood pressure looked fine on my at-home cuff. So I figured it was just being super pregnant. The day of my appt though, I was feeling crummy and off. By the time I arrived, I was feeling dizzy, my eyes felt shifty, was generally not feeling well. My blood pressure was higher than usual too. After just a few minutes of me explaining how I felt, the midwife (the same one who delivered Ainsley!) said it was time to have my baby, I wouldn't be going anywhere and she'd bring in a wheelchair to take me straight to labor + delivery. 

I cried. I wasn't expecting that at all, and it wasn't part of my birth plan! She said she knew it was a shock, but in order for me to get better, I needed to deliver the baby. I called Nick and in my choked up voice, I told him I was having the baby and he needed to get our stuff together and get to the hospital. 

He had to quickly cancel his remaining meetings for the day (he was on a call when I called and had to tell his co-worker that his super pregnant wife was calling from the doctor and he needed to take it!). We arranged for my mom to come over to stay with Ainsley, and Nick had to go grab her from school and grab our Walmart grocery pick-up order we had arranged already too. We FaceTimed so I could tell him which makeup he should bring and such to try to get together the stuff I hadn't already put in our birth bag. It felt so hectic! 

My delivery room. I took this pic in disbelief as I did some paperwork getting admitted.

I was just hanging out in L&D for a while as I got checked in. I had to get the lovely COV!D test as I checked into L&D, which didn't feel great, but was fine and thankfully was negative. They checked for protein in my urine and there was a lot, which meant I had preeclampsia. That was a game changer for how delivery would go. Nothing really happened for a few hours but I was hooked up to all the monitors and such for me and the baby. Nick arrived around 7pm (my appt was at 3:15) and I was having some contractions after she checked me. 

All "dressed up", masked up, and ready to go :) 

Once the on-call midwife came in, she said since I had higher blood pressure and protein in my urine, I'd need to be on an anti-seizure medication (magnesium sulfate). That was also a game changer for me. She said that medicine made people feel sick, but during labor many times blood pressure rises more, and they needed to make sure I wouldn't have a seizure. 

Our game plan for the induction was to go ahead and start pitocin to get the show on the road. She said "we need to get the placenta out" so I could get better. So time was of the essence! Things started slow and we increased pitocin a little at a time to watch how my contractions looked and see how much I was progressing. I got an epidural around 1am I believe. They highly recommended this to me from the beginning of my pregnancy due to my history of 4th degree tear with Ainsley, so they could help ease the baby out vs. me feeling the intense pain and pushing harder to get the baby out and re-injure that tear/scar tissue. 

Sometime during the night, my first smaller bag of waters broke. Then later, Nick was napping, I was resting (couldn't sleep, ugh!) and I needed his help grabbing something since I was hooked up to a couple IV's. So he turned on the light and came over, and saw a stream of liquid all over the floor. Having no idea what it was, we called the nurse in - she was checking the IV, catheter, lol - trying to see what this liquid was from. Then a few of them were in there including my midwife came in to check me anyway, she she knew right away as she checked me, that my water broke, and had leaked through the opening in the bed, alllllll over the floor! She said it was easily 2-3 liters of amniotic fluid! (Normal for 40weeks pregnant is 1/2 of a liter). THAT explained why my belly was so huge and skin was so painful and stretched - I had a TON of fluid in there. 

That was also exciting though, because water breaking meant a step closer to meeting this baby! And I thought it was so fun that my water broke because with Ainsley, it never broke on its own (they broke it when I was fully dilated). 

We were in contact with my doula the whole time to determine when she should come in, not knowing how long it would take to progress. Once I was 4-5cm dilated, around 3-4am, she arrived. It was a different scenario than I pictured with her since I was just in bed at this point, not able to labor around with her. But, she was still so helpful to navigate decisions and every step along the way (and when I was pregnant too). I love the support of a doula!

During the night, the effects of the magnesium were rearing their ugly head. I felt lots of hot flashes and flushed cheeks, felt like the room was spinning around me, and I nearly passed out a few times. During those episodes, I couldn't speak, look at people and felt like I was so out of it. It was not fun to say the least. 

One of the scary things that happened was when both my and the baby's heart rates dropped suddenly. Mine went from 120 to 60. All I knew was that nurses rushed in, got me on all fours (I couldn't do it myself bc of the epidural) and tried to reposition in attempt to help the baby's heart rate recover quickly. My midwife was calm & rubbed his head and our heart rates recovered. It was a scary moment, but I always think of how that little head rub showed him we were there and we were going to get through it together. In that moment, our doula also told Nick it looked like they were preparing for a c-section in case things didn't quickly turn around. <<as I type this, Bear is sleeping on my chest and I can't help but hug him tight when I type those words.>>

My midwife checked me off and on, was working my cervix a bit to help it get there. Her shift was set to be ending at 8am, but I could tell she was pretty invested and wanted to see it through with us. She had also been familiar with my protect-the-4th-degree-tear plan, and wanting to help me not have that happen again. So I think she was trying to help my body get there so she could help before she shift change. We pushed for 45 minutes. He was crowning for maybe 20 minutes y'all. We have pics of it that my doula took, ha! It's insane that 2-3 inches or so of his head could be seen for that long, just hanging out in my birth canal as the midwife carefully applied oil and eased my perineum. She said in the end too that my pelvis is very small/tight. (Good thing I end up having small babies, goodness!). 


I vividly remember Nick telling me, "you're doing it!" and feeling like my birth team was in it with us, and feeling empowered and encouraged that I was getting this baby out! With a final push, he was out and I was so relieved and kept saying, "we did it!" to Nick, feeling all the emotions of knowing we made it, and this baby was here now!

The first pic of my guy. He's not so sure what just happened. 

All in all, labor was about 12 hours, and he was born at 8:14am, Friday the 13th of November. Our doula even captured his birth on video, which I never realized was footage I would cherish. Our bodies, and the birthing process, is such a miracle. I had a 2nd degree tear, so was stitched up as I held my boy and reveled in his newborn snuggles. They let me hold him for what felt like a few hours until we were ready to have them take his stats (weight, height, etc). 

I had oils (joy, believe) diffusing the whole time  and had my birth playlist playing. A super neat moment was when we were pushing, there were a few nurses in the room, along with a small team who came in with a doctor - we *think* he was there in case I had another 4th degree and needed stitched. So there were maybe 8-9 people in the room as he was crowned just waiting for him to be out. A few nurses though were singing along to our worship music. I remember Lauren Daigle's song on that everyone was singing and it was a magical moment worshiping together, bringing this sweet babe into the world. 

After delivery, I had to stay on Magnesium Sulfate for 24 hours bc of preeclampsia and that was ROUGH. I couldn't eat (after delivering a baby. I was hungry). I couldn't walk. So I had to use a bed pan , which is uniquely challenging when you can't move your lower body (because that med is an intense muscle relaxer so I couldn't bear weight). I felt sick, couldn't move much, it was frustrating. My eyes felt dizzy, kept having blood pressure issues. My baby was wonderful but I was struggling in my own body. I stayed an extra day in the hospital because I had "sea legs" where I really struggled walking and getting around those first few days due to that magnesium sulfate. 

Fast forward to a week later, I was still feeling off and dizzy spells, and was readmitted to the hospital for high blood pressure. It was 170/90 when I got admitted, which was scary - I'd never seen a number like that before. I had to stay two nights away from my one week old baby, and it was painful to be away from him. I sobbed before leaving his side at home. But cov!d protocols prevented him from being able to come with me. Nick had to go get formula, while I pumped around the clock. My dad stayed at the hospital with me, because I was scared to be alone there, and Nick took care of our kids while all praying my blood pressure issues would cease. I got on medication and thankfully it got better. I was on blood pressure medication for another few months. 

My blonde hair + blue eyed boy! Such a surprise since Nick, Ainsley and I have darker hair and eyes. 

I cherish the pics of Nick with our babies in the middle of the night like this. Sweet daddy. I couldn't get out of bed the first 24 hrs after delivery, so he was on duty and so helpful. 

I hadn't slept in like a day and a half here. And had on days old makeup, ha!
But in heaven with these snuggles. 

6lbs 7oz of sweetness

Getting in my million kisses a day. 

Meeting big sister Monday morning! 

Family pic <3. And that postpartum belly, a few days after delivery. 

The sweetest Christmas season, snuggling a new gift from God. 

6.5 weeks old! Growing so fast. 8lb 14oz and filling out so much!

We love you SO MUCH, Berringer Dean. You are worth all the work of bringing you into the world. 

Love you always & forever,  

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Young Living FAVES Lately

Happy Thursday, friends!

I wanted to hop in here and tell you about some of my favorite Young Living products lately. It's no secret I love and use their products in pretty much every area of our life - laundry, hair, oils, sleep, hormones, muscles, supplements, what am I missing? Ha. - And know many of you are interested in non-toxic products too, so I wanted to share a few I'm especially enjoying lately. 

This essential oil infused acne spot cream is new to me - I just got it for the first time last month, and I've been LOVING it to apply to certain ornery spots that need to be zapped. I notice they typically will begin drying out once I apply it which is perfect. I try to apply a couple times a day on especially tricky spots. I also will use it along the pores on the sides of my nose and on my chin to reduce the appearance of blackheads and such. So glad I decided to try it! 

I've been focusing on supporting my hormones lately and these have been favorites! Pro + is such a gem in this area of regulating hormones, and the others are in Dragon Time (which I'm currently out of!), so I've been using them a few days before my period begins to help ease the cramping. The entire Dragon Time line is amazing for us ladies and our cycles! 

Believe has been a favorite blend of mine for quite some time. I used it a lot during my pregnancy with Ainsley, actually! I have memories of midwives walking into my appointment room, asking when I was wearing because it smelled so good. Many days, it was believe! Or believe + patchouli, a combo I love. Anyway, the blend of oils can help encourage feelings of strength and faith which is super timely for this season for me (after being laid off last month). As an enneagram 6, it's a great blend for most seasons for me really! I LOVE it. And it smells amazing. 

It has: Balsam, Coriander, Bergamot, Frankincense, Idaho Blue spruce, Ylang ylang, and Geranium. See? Heavenly, I'm telling you. 

NingXia Red is a MUST for us. Nick has used it regularly all winter and has made it through so many rounds of all of his co-workers being sick, except for him. This immune boosting powerhouse is a must-order every other month for us! Ainsley is a huge fan too since it is so yummy! We just take 1/2 shot glass (about 1oz) a day since it is so power-packed. A little goes a long way. 

A note about wellness too - I didn't start by diving into EVERYthing at once. You just have to start somewhere. It's also been YEARS of trying and learning and experimenting. We would replace one item at a time in out house on our journey to use clean products. It doesn't have to be overwhelming, I promise. Just start somewhere, one step at a time! 

If you've been using these products for a while, I would love to hear your favorites lately! Even after 5.5 years of receiving MONTHLY shipments of these goodies, there are still so many more things I have yet to try. So I would love to hear your suggestions! 

I hope y'all have a wonderful day! 

Be well, my friends! 

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

My Baby is TWO!

Time truly flies once you have kids, y'all. I mean, it went fast before too. But it's true that each day and each season can feel long, but the years go by so fast! And they grow and change and learn so fast too. It gives me all the feels to think of how our lives have changed since the presence of this baby girl. 

PS - if you love a good birth story, here is Ainsley's!

It's the hardest thing but also the best thing. 

Our new marriage journal walks through joys of the week and hard things of the week - and sometimes, babies and toddlers can squeeze into both categories! HA! Teaching someone how to be a good human is HARD Y'ALL. But also so sweet. Gah, what a crazy ride!

Clearly, Ainsley HATED her birthday cupcake. She is so funny! 

Haven't we all felt this way about a good cupcake? 

Get it, girrrrl! 

She was sick leading up to her birthday, but the day of her party, she magically was in great spirits and had the best day. (Her sickness came back two days later - oyyy so I was thankful her celebration day was a respite from it!). 

She was losing patience for pictures ;) but liked her minnie mouse theme. She loved minnie! 

Such a big girl having fun opening presents this year! Last year was such a different story - haha! 

The morning of her birthday party, she was also dedicated at church. 

She loved being in the sanctuary for singing worship songs (she's usually in the toddler room for that!). 

It was really special to have friends & family surround us there and afar as we raise this girl. 

The name Ainsley means meadow, which has always been a special meaning for me and was part of how we chose her name. 

The pastor used Psalm 23: 2-3 as he prayed over her:

"He lets me rest in the meadow grass and leads me beside quiet streams. He gives me new strength. He helps me do what honors him the most." 

That verse has aways been dear to me too (especially in season of life I'm especially overwhelmed!), so it was really powerful to see that's the verse he used in her dedication. 

SUCH a fun day celebrating that sweet girl. 

Now for a few faves lately so I can remember as she gets older:)
- She will reach out her hand, saying "hold hands, mommy!" when she wants to show me something or needs help. It's my favorite. 
-When she's sad and tantrumming (#toddlerlife, right?! My computer says that's not a word but I DISAGREE, lol), she will yell, " HOLD YOUUUUU", for me to pick her up and hold her. Melts my heart every time. 
- She has gone pee and poop on the potty quite a few times now! Not consistently yet, but making progress for sure. 
- We pray at every meal and she loves that routine. Sometimes randomly during the day, she'll clasp her hands together, look up at me and say, "Pray." which is a sweet reminder. 
- She says "yellow" for "another". For the longest time, I thought she was wanting a YELLOW pouch at the end of her meals which was really confusing since we don't have one. I recently realized that's how she is pronouncing ANOTHER. So funny and cute. 
-She's all about doing things on her own. "I do it!" - throwing things in the trash, trying to get on her shoes, shorts, etc. 
- I was making our lunches yesterday and she was in her room in her new princess tent. She stormed into the kitchen and yelled, "MOMMY, GET IN HERE!" - her way of inviting me into her tent. 
- When Nick brings her home from daycare, I can hear her walk into the house and say, "I go find mommy". And it's the sweetest that she's at an age to be excited to come see me after her day!

What a fun yet crazy age, y'all. 

Fall-- Texas is ready for you! 

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