11.28.2010

If You Heart Our Kiddos

If you heart our kiddos, and want to see what they are up to, here are November pics. I wish I could load them all here, but of course that won't happen due to time. So for now... here ya go!

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2096623&id=1467876466&l=e755ad4251

11.24.2010

The Baby Is Here!





Our Nephew Jayson Alexander arrived yesterday at a whopping 8 lbs. 15 oz. and 20 1/2 inches. He is gorgeous, and Sister In Law Monica did wonderful. My heart melted when I held him and then again when Aaden waved "bye-bye" to Jayson. I am excited for Monica and Mike to learn the joy of being parents, and also excited that my boys will have a cousin so close in age. I can just picture sleep overs, and family events where the boys will swim, and climb trees.

While sitting in the waiting room, watching pregnant women come and go, all the feelings of my not so normalcy came flooding back. I became rather envious of the normal women. Women whom want to get pregnant than do. Women who have a normal pregnancy with no bed rest or fear of their children dying every day. Women who want people in the room while in labor, I didn't because I didn't want anyone else to witness my babies possibly dying. Women who get to have their babies in their room with them. Women who got to hold their babies after birth. Women who got to breastfeed after the birth. Women who got to cry happy tears after the birth, when mine were more a combination of happy and worry. Women who get to go home with their babies. I mourn for that sense of normalcy I never got and probably never will.

Nothing can erase that empty void in my heart, the void is NOTHING like the void I had before N & A, but still just a little painful, something I will always slightly mourn and will ALWAYS remain a memory.

A great quote from Drea last night "I know this is going to sound selfish, but I want you to have another. I want for you to be 100 bazillion percent complete!" Got to love my Drea. Lately her and are so in sync and she knows just what to say to make me smile.

Got to also love cute calls from the Hubs. Gabe wanted to know what was up with my reaction to Mindy the Nurse (whom was a friend of his.) She had a baby a few months before us and mentioned she was ready for another, then asked us if we were as well. Without even a blink of hesitation or a moment of silence, I blurted out YES! Gabe's head shot around to me like a cannon ball. While we had discussed this we were still on the fence some days. Today was not one of those and I think the days are gone where I will ever be on the fence again. Gabe said he could see it in my face as I watched and held Jayson that I want another baby, that I want just one baby, and a chance to try to have a normal pregnancy and make N & A big brothers. He was giggling as he was saying this to me, it was pretty cute. So, it is safe to say we are for sure on the same page and he can see that my desire is in fact strong, a few weeks ago he told me he would be happy either way. Another baby, or just having the boys he felt blessed. I felt the same, if that is how it works out, but my deep desire would love to give it another go. If it doesn't work out, then it wasn't meant to be as I will NOT go through another full IVF cycle.

So, it won't be soon, but eventually we plan to try again, and on our own at first. I have an OBGYN appointment next month, so I will talk with him and go from there. I would like for the boys to be a bit older if I did have to go on light bedrest. At an age where maybe they were in beds vs. me lifting them into cribs. Only time will tell.

11.18.2010

Seven Down

SEVEN down and lots more to go, but hey... it's a start.

I owe much of it to a few new combos that seem like I am cheating when I am really not.

#1 - Hot Pastrami Sammy (3)
(1) Sandwich thin
(1) Pastrami
(1) 1/2 slice of swiss cheese (still searching for a whole slice for only 1)
(0) Dijon mustard
(0) 2 tsp. saurkraut

#2 - Chili Dog (4)
(1) Hotdog thin (yes, they make them)
(1) Hebrew National 98% FF hot dog (1,000 times better than a FF Ball Park)
(1) 1/8 C. Shredded cheddar cheese
(1) 1/2 C. Dennisons 99% FF chili
(0) Onion

I also love Kashi Chocolate chip cookies for 2 pts.

In other news... baby Zachary Ellis was born, just two days past his due date and what a doll. I cannot wait to start watching him once a week and getting my baby fix.

Speaking of baby fix, our nephew Jayson is due in just 10 more days. I am thrilled for my Sister In Law Monica to experience the joy of Motherhood, and for Mikie to be a Father. Along with baby Jayson will be a visit from Mima, we have not seen her in 4 months. If baby comes early she might even be here for Thanksgiving and for the four day weekend.

Lets see, what else is new? The oven lock arrived, as did our second set of closet door locks. Hoping they last a little longer than the first. The boys DO NOT like the oven lock, but after a few tries have moved onto the warming in drawer.. grrrr. Bathroom doors and our bedroom door are always closed now.

These little buggers are into EVERYTHING. Last night I went to the garage to look for something. A few minutes later through the dog door out pops an empty two liter bottle, and then some paper. Noah had pulled these things from the recylce bin and dropped them onto the garage floor. Daily I will find books, toys, garbage, and cups in the garage. Noah has yet to go through the door himself, but Aaden is a pro. While switching laundry over the other day (seriously only 2 minutes) I turned and there was Aaden right behind me. They LOVE the garage, which is sort of my fault as I turned it into a sort of parking lot. Little tikes car, wagon, riding cars etc. for when the weather is bad.

Right now our worst struggle is the kitchen table, man that Aaden is a stubborn little acrobat. No matter what I do, he figures out how to get on the kitchen table. He moves the chairs and pulls himself up. Then he stands on the table and does a little dance. Although NOT funny, it IS funny.

Meals are becoming different too, Noah is getting picky. When he doesn't like something he will throw it on the ground or put it on Aaden's tray. However, if he doesn't like something today, he might like it tomorrow, so I have to keep trying. I have learned that food order matters. If I serve them a meal with meat, starch, and veggie. Noah will eat the starch then throw the rest. So now they get veggies first, then the meat, then lastly the starch. If they eat well they get 2 organic animal crackers at the end of the meal. Aaden most times will refuse anything YOU feed him off the spoon, while Noah still prefers that sometimes. They have a mind of their own. Aaden is a GREAT eater, which you wouldn't know by the size of him, and Noah is a poor eater, which again you wouldn't know by the size of him.

I am loving the kisses and waves. Even better is when they kiss each other. I am going to try super hard to get that on video this weekend. Have I mentioned I love my boys and my life? I CANNOT wait for Christmas time and for our family of four to start new traditions. We plan to start pulling out some of the decorations this weekend. Awww Christmas music and making memories with my three boys, I CANNOT wait.

11.17.2010

11.16.2010

My Grammy

I know that numerous times I have mentioned my Grandma on this blog, but for some reason I feel like she deserves some more credit in a post today. My Grandma is and will always be my inspiration. She is intertwined in every ounce of me, she has taught me so much. She has been a woman whom I have always looked up to.

Six and a half years ago, shortly after Gabe and I got engaged, she was diagnosed with lung cancer, at that moment I could see my world crashing down. She had amazing doctors and with prayer and those doctors her cancer was cured with surgery alone. Shortly after she climbed to the top of Half Dome in Yosemite and now watches our boys EVERY Thursday. She is my biggest inspiration and a women I am proud to know.

Growing up as a kid my stable family life came about 30 minutes from home at my Grandma's. It was there that I saw how to clean the house during the day, follow a Weight Watcher diet, grocery shop, bake, and prep dinner. Then at 5:30 P.M. I met Papa on the corner after the "van pool" dropped him from the city. Him and I would walk hand in hand to the dinner Gram and I prepared. We would sit at the table, say our dinner prayer, and then grub on our amazing dinner and chat about the day. I saw Grammy and Papa kiss when he came home, Papa do much of the dinner clean up, and then our yummy dessert would be served in the living room. If it was Wednesday I was to play in the "sewing room" during bible study class, then when class was over I could come out and enjoy dessert with the classmates. My Summers at Grammy and Papa's will always be remembered. The neighborhood was amazing, one of those out of a movie. I had friends I made in that neighborhood which will never be forgotten and will always remain friends, we came home when the street lights came on, and we walked to the he swim center a couple days a week. Sunday was never without church and Friday was always dinner out.

My childhood had three sides, and in essence I believe that made me who I am. I had this life that came straight from the burbs and a movie. With toenail painting, books, amazing friends with great families, cooking lessons, garage play, 5:30 dinners, prayers before dinner, pizza in the living room, and a tuck in and prayer before bed. I also have seen the bachelor pad, with a fun Dad who loves to hunt, the Dad who worked hard, and the Dad who didn't put his first born first. I have also seen the Mom who would give her daughter ANYTHING. A Mom who had a baby and marriage a little too young. The Mom who would sacrifice anything to be sure her daughter had the shoes, jeans, activity or item she wanted. The Mom who wanted nothing more than for her daughter to succeed. The Mom whom would make payments to the Gram for the special scooter the daughter wanted for Christmas. The Mom who would work three jobs. The Mom whom was cool, the Mom whom wanted to show me that things come from working hard and NOTHING should be handed to you. The Mom who made me feel like I could tell her anything. Like in 8th grade I couldn't wait to get home to tell her I played tonsil hockey with my crush/boyfriend.

While my Gram showed me the life I want my boys to have, my Mom and Dad showed me what it was like to have hard working parents whom are also like friends. Not to say that my amazing Gram isn't and wasn't my friend, but when I hit about 13 the conversations then leaned toward my Mom. At that point my Dad had moved out of state and that is when it was just Mom and I, where her and I went through those teenage years alone. The years when I wanted her to leave me alone, but I know now it was only because she cared.

I have come from three extremes and they all helped to mold me into the woman I am and the Mom I want to be. I want for my boys to know all those sides of me. I want to thank the Gram for showing me that life and marriage do work and that the wonderful home life isn't just for the movies, it is what I strive for. I love each and everyone of my mentors, but my Gram holds an amazing place in my heart. I will NEVER drive past "The Cherry Tree Store" without thinking of my amazing Grandma. That is the store we used to meet half way at to trade me between Mom and Gram. I pray each day that Gram sticks around for another 15 years so that the boys have the pleasure of spending more time with her. I want for nothing more than for her to teach them even half of what she taught me and I want them to remember her and all her amazing qualities.

I love you Grammy!

11.12.2010

Done

Hey lookie here... a blog that is NOT about Weight Watchers and food.

How do you know when you are done having kids? How do you know when your family is complete? Do you have an acutal feeling of completion? My gutt says that if I am even questionning it, that means I am NOT done.

When the boys were born, I was ready for another one. We agreed to wait until the boys were 12 months and then we would discuss it again and maybe get off of BCP. Well, 12 months came and went and we joked about how different 3 month old twins vs. 12 month old twins were. I was NOT ready for another baby a couple months ago, and often times just thought that maybe we were done because oh my goodness sometimes this is a hard job.

Now here we are at 14 months (Happy 14 Months Buggie Boos), and I am thinking about it again. Some days it is a NO way, and other days I envision this sweet little girl as part of our family. Had the boys been Addyson & Noah I often wonder if I would feel complete. I would like to experience a singleton pregnancy, I long for a daughter to take to ballet class, I want the boys to have a little sister to protect, but then on the other hand I have been SO blessed why rock the boat?

Gabe comes from a family of three siblings sort of, and I come from a family of three siblings sort of. We always talked about three kids. But, how do you know? When is it right? AND when is the right time to go on bedrest, because I have already been told that I would be on some form of bedrest. How will we know when is the right time to make an RE appointment? And then... what if for some horrible reason the 5 frozen bubbies didn't take? Would I take that as a sign that our family is complete? Having the frozen embryos is ALWAYS in the back of my mind, another child is ALWAYS in the back of my mind. I have not gotten rid of my fav maternity clothes, or some of my fav baby items. So I take that as, no I am not done.

What are your thoughts on adding to your family? What ages are best to welcome a new child? Geeshhh, who am I kidding? It could take us a couple years just to get pregnant again.

Zachary Ellis is due today and Jayson Alexander is due in a little over two weeks. Zachary is my new Tuesday baby and Jayson is my Nephew, so for now while I ponder the thought of baby #3 for a couple more months, they will give me a taste and snuggle time with newborns and help me/us to make a decision, because this decision is not just mine, but the Lord's, Gabe's, Noah, and Aaden's as well. N & A already have to share so much, maybe they deserve our sole attention?

Now I will leave you with a video of our little smart tart, Noah:
video

11.11.2010

New Finds

Did you know that wonton wrappers are super low in points?

5 wonton wrappers (1.5)
1 garlic herb laughing cow (1)
Wrap like a little appetizer and bake at 350 for about 5 minutes, YUM-O.

Wonton wrappers can also be placed in a muffin tin to make little boats and filled with just about anything.

Spray the muffin tin with PAM spray, then bake at 350 for about 7 minutes or until golden.



I filled my boats with WW Taco Soup, which is another amazing find.
Check out my 5 point lunch from yesterday:


Weight Watcher Taco Soup has been around forever. I made it a couple days ago, my favorite way to eat it is served over a bed of lettuce.

TACO SOUP
Ingredients
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1 lb. ground turkey or extra lean beef
1 medium onion
1 (1 oz.) package hidden valley ranch dressing mix
1 (1 oz) package taco seasoning Mix
1 (16 oz.) can pinto beans
1 (16 oz) can chili beans (either hot or regular)
1 (16 oz) can whole kernel corn
1 (8 oz) can Mexican-style tomatoes
1 (8 oz) can diced tomatoes (any flavor)

Brown meat & onions and drain.
Mix Ranch & Taco seasonings into meat.
Add rest of ingredients, undrained to mixture.
Simmer 1 hour.
2 Weight Watchers points per cup.

I often omit the corn and this time I swapped the chili beans for black beans. I also add a couple cup of water as well. In my boats I only use 1/2 cup of soup.

While making this soup the other day I had all three boys, and the soup simmering on the stove. Jack was snacking in the kitchen and my boys were wandering. I went back to the boys room to get a load of laundry and I hear Jack "eeehhh ggeeeehhh!" I grab my load and head to the kitchen to see what is going on. Aaden had opened the over door and was standing on it reaching his fingers towards the burner next to the one cooking the soup. It freaked me the heck out. I can no longer walk in the other room while the boys wander. I have ordered an oven lock, it should be here in a couple days. AND cooking is only to be done on back burners from now on. Yesterday I went to the bathroom, I was gone about 2 minutes when I came back I found Aaden standing on the kitchen table throwing mini pumpkins, and gourds down to Noah who was then throwing the pumpkins around the living room as if they were balls. I have moved the decorative Fall display from the table and have done what I can to detour him from the kitchen table.

Last night I made an Asian Chicken salad. I grilled up some terriyaki chicken, and baked up a few won ton strips. I made a dressing with FF mayo, soy, fresh ginger, rice wine vinegar, splenda, sesame oil, and rice wine vinegar.



Here is this mornings breakfast:
High Fiber English Muffin (1)
Morningstar (veggie) sausage patty (2)
Low cal American cheese (1)
Tea (0)

11.09.2010

Shrimp


This is last nights dinner. It was A-MAZING!

I found it from my "new" favorite website Gina's Skinny Recipes. Her site is FANTASTIC, a new recipe everyday of course with the point value.

So here is the recipe from last night. I cut the recipe in half because Hubs wasn't home and the boys had already had dinner and were almost ready for bed, however that didn't stop Aaden from snagging four bites off my plate.

Cilantro and lime make this simple shrimp dish outstanding. Serve this over rice or with a salad. Shrimp is one of my favorite skinny foods to cook with. It's packed with protein, low in calories, and cooks in minutes which is great when you need a quick delicious meal.

Cilantro Lime Shrimp
Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes
Servings: 4 • Serving Size: 6 oz • Points: 4 pts
Calories: 197.3 • Fat: 4.1g • Protein: 35.9 g • Carb: 2.4 g • Fiber: 0.1 g
2 tsp olive oil
2 lb shrimp, shelled and deviened
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 lime
salt and pepper
Heat a large frying pan on medium-high heat. Add oil to the pan, when hot add shrimp. Season with salt and pepper. When the shrimp is cooked on one side, about 2 minutes, turn over and add garlic. Sauté another minute or two until shrimp is cooked, careful not to overcook. Remove from heat. Squeeze lime all over shrimp and toss with cilantro. Serve hot
http://www.skinnytaste.com/2010/03/cilantro-lime-shrimp.html

So as you can see for 6 oz. of shrimp it is 4 points (and YES I ALWAYS weigh EVERYTHING.) I served this over 1/2 cup of TJ's frozen brown rice, if you have not tried this rice you don't know what you are missing. It comes in a box and inside are three bags. You poke a hole in the bag then microwave for 3 minutes, I always add a few sprays of butter. So, according to the package 1/2 cup would only be one point. Could that be? A full serving of one cup is 3 points, but if you half the nutrition facts it comes out to one, or I could be safe and just half the points of the full serving, which would make it 1.5. So either way still AMAZING.

Dinner was so yummy that I decided to share the other half with Hubs, so he will be eating that for lunch today.

Weekends are a bit harder, well Saturday was harder. Friday was fine, we had the Hernandez Clan over for dinner (well they brought much of dinner, thanks Drea) and to watch Toy Story 3. We had salad, BBQ chicken breast, Rice A Roni (which actually wasn't too bad in points), and baked beans, which isn't bad at all due to all the fiber. Oh and a bag of one point popcorn during the movie.

Saturday breakfast went great, 4 point sammy. Light high fiber english muffin toasted (1), egg beaters (1), two slices of ready crisp bacon (1), one slice of low fat american cheese (1). Then off to the mall we went so Hubs could get a new phone case. We decided to eat at Applebee's because after all they have low cal options on their menu. I must say going out has to be my downfall. I walked in and I wanted mozerella sticks so bad, then a burger, then buffalo wings. Grrrrrr. So, I have a "go to salad" I like to order there, Santa Fe Chicken Salad. I looked it up on Dottie's Weight Loss, and for the full order it said 16 points. Okay so the half is 8? Great! I still get to have one of my favorite salads. I ordered an iced tea and the salad and Gabe jumped on and order the same, swapping the iced tea for diet soda. A moment after the waiter walked away, we found the nutrition chart on the table and threw the numbers in the calculator via my iphone. GULP! 20 points!!!!!!!!!! OH WAITER! Yes, we called the waiter over and had him cancel our order. He handed us a menu and stood there while we looked, crap what to order what to order? Gabe opted for a small steak off the WW menu, and I saw some sort of shrimp asian style wrap with fries, so I swapped the fries for broccoli and we were back in business. After he walked away, Gabe popped my wrap numbers in the calculator then wouldn't look at me. What? What? How could shrimp wrapped in a tortilla be that bad? Turns out it was, it was deep fried shrimp along with some yummy creamy sauce, and a WHOPPING 16 points, at this point I just said forget it. The wrap came and it was SOOOOOO good. I ate all the broccoli then only ate half the wrap, I could have eaten it all, but honestly I was content with just the half, and having something that yummy was worth it, I opted for a 2nd glass of iced tea and was proud I was able to have an 8 point lunch out. So, meals out will be few and far between. Well.....they already are, but will be even fewer. Oh and by the way the boys were great at Applebee's. Probably because they got to have grilled cheese.

Today I am off and have Mr. Jack for 12 hours. Jack is my former babysitters son. She took a full time job so I am helping her out one or two days a week. She is due with baby boy #2 in 3 days. So, soon enough I will be watch Jack and Zachary Ellis, which will help pay for the days the boys go to the new sitter, but also fill my baby fix... I cannot wait! Later today I am meeting my friend at a park for a picnic and we will let all the kiddos play, I wonder how many activity points I can earn chasing after 3 kids?

11.04.2010

Another Day

Breakfast (2)
Low Sugar Maple Flavored Oatmeal - 2
Hot tea - 0

Lunch (7)
Mini Frozen Burrito from Whole Foods - 3
Salsa - 0
Whole wheat and Flax seed tortilla chips - 2
100 calorie pack guacamole - 2
Crystal light - 0

Dinner (11)
4 oz. filet mignon - 5.5
Salad with low cal dressing- 1
1/2 potato - 1.5
Olive oil spray and seasonings - 0
3 oz. Langoustine bites w/ spray butter- 1
Glass of wine - 2

Snacks (6)
Wheat savory thins - 2
Laughing cow cheese - 1
Skinny cow ice cream - 3 (later tonight)

Total: 26
+3 Activity points

(4 remaining)

Lunch


Dinner

Weight

In order to succeed at a diet, something just has to click. For me something has to happen, a comment from someone or dreading seeing pictures of yourself with your kids. For my Hubby it takes a challenge. For me, I have to do it FOR me, and I have to be READY.

Well I am ready and I am full force ahead. Back a few years ago I joined Weight Watchers, it was the best thing I ever did for myself. It brought me to a healthy weight to be able to do IVF and have the most success, but most of all I was confident and proud of myself.

A couple weeks ago Hubby started a weight loss challenge at work, they each paid $50 then after 8 weeks, the winner gets a huge chunk of money. For Hubby he likes to compete, me it takes something else. Don't get me wrong Hubby also wants to do this for himself and the boys, but the challenge kick started him. When he first started, I just wasn't ready yet... it took me a couple days, I just wasn't ready to give up some of my favorite foods, but then as I began to help him and explain Weight Watchers my feelings of scoring the best meal for the least points, and the feeling of accomplishment at the end of each day I succeeded, and not to mention that rush you get when you step on the scale and the number goes down. I was hooked!

Here I am hooked again. The last time I started this program I weighed 222 pounds. I eventually got down to 152, this was the day I started shots for IVF #1. I remember that day well as it was the lowest I could recall since 11th grade. Do I weigh 222 now? No I do not. I don't have near as much to lose, but I am not 152. I would love to get down to 150, but for now my mini goal is 160. When I started WW 1.5 weeks ago I weighed 184, I am happy to report that this morning I was 180. So I am on my way, 20 to go for my mini goal, which I hope to reach by Christmas.

Being back on the plan has given me this rush of excitement. I am thrilled to be eating right and exercising. Yes, that's right I have been walking on the treadmill in the mornings before the boys get up. I too am loving that, as it is sort of a "me" time.

So now that I am so into this and have found so many amazing food finds, I want to share them somewhere. What do you all think? Should I start a 2nd blog about this journey? Should I share it here on this blog? Does anyone know of someone who blogs about WW? I love WW, to me it just makes the most sense. I can have WHATEVER I want, just can't have whatever I want for EVERY meal. The boys and I walked to Whole Foods and Trader Joe's yesterday. We were gone for almost 3 hours. They did great, it was 9, so they ended up falling asleep around 10:30 in the stroller, so I kept on searching the stores for finds. And finds I DID find. Hubby was SO thrilled when he got home to see the great meals I had planned, and the great snacks I had found.

So, here is what I ate yesterday:

Breakfast: (3)
Low fat flour tortilla - 1
Egg beaters - 1
1/8 C of low fat cheese - 1
1/4 of salsa - 0
Black coffee - 0

Lunch: (7)
Alverado Street bun - 2
Morningstar Veggie Burger - 1
Low fat cheese - 1
Tomato - 0
Lettuce - 0
Pickle - 0
Mustard - 0
Baked potato chips - 2
Apple - 1
Iced tea - 0

Dinner: (14.5)
Sandwich thin - 1
Swiss cheese - 2
1 oz. Deli ham - 1
Morningstar veggie chicken patty - 3
Mustard - 0
Mayo - 1.5
Lettuce - 0
Tomato - 0
Broccoli - 0
20 organic fries - 2
1 tsp. Ketchup - 0
2 glasses of wine - 4

Snacks: (2)
WW Smoothie bar - 1
Crackers - 0 (YES I DID SAY ZERO!)
Blue cheese Laughing cow - 1

TOTAL: 26.5
+3 activity points

So, I guess I should have eaten a little more, since I technically had 3.5 left.

Here is a picture of my lunch:


So what do ya'll think? Is it worth starting up a WW blog? Would any one really care? Would you want to see some WW updates on this blog? I would read a WW blog because I love to hear about great food finds. But, do I really have the time? Part of me thinks it might help to keep me more motivated, but the idea of creating a new blog sounds draining. Input please!

11.03.2010

A Good Effort!

So, because I have been such a slacker at blogging, taking pics, and taking video.. I made a point of recording our evening and editing the video. Taking a few pics and editing them... and VOILA! Here I am blogging and sharing them with you. Here is our Wednesday evening. And NO they don't get away with this kind of stuff, just wanted to share with ya what the boys are "truly" up to.











video

11.02.2010

Halloween

Yes, yes I am being lazy. I spend any free moment I get on the computer scrapblogging, so... if you want to see Halloween pictures, follow the link. I promise I will blog soon.

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2096344&id=1467876466&l=44c56f6830