Friday, November 15, 2013

18 Months!!!

Guess who is 18 months old today!!??!!  Anna!

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It is amazing to me how much Anna has changed in the last month… each month she changes more, but this last month has amazed me.

Still our super blondie… not so blue eyes anymore.  Finally long enough hair for mini pigtails.  Stats… we’ll know in a couple of weeks at her 18 month check up.

She talks… yes… mostly jabbers, but she talks, in baby sentences, and occasionally words pop out that we know.  Auntie Lis taught her how to say “please” when asking for things, one of her favorite words is, “baby”, and she’s added a load of others to her repertoire… owl, hi, bye, dada, ball, down, out, duck, owl, coat.  She tries hard to say “Minnie Mouse”.

She walks better every day and now only crawls “for fun”. 

She loves to wear her shoes around the house and recently moved into a size 6. 

She also loves her coat.  We used Raven’s coat from last year (3T), but she’s really wearing 2T for clothes… so big already!

She loves to read books, sing songs, and make a mess in her sister’s room.  (If you can’t find Anna, chances are that she’s digging in a toy bin in Julia and Raven’s room.)

Anna knows her family, and if you ask her, she will point to all of her family members, including Dante and Auntie Lis.  She has a new special bond with Dante, she has grown to love her Auntie, and generally has opened up more to people being in her space and she loves to play with her sisters (and “brother”).  She thinks that chasing and being chased is super fun.  She enjoyed her first dive into the leaves this fall too.

Suffice to say, our baby is a toddler… but she will always be my baby.  And when I ask her where Baby Anna is, she giggles, puts her hands over her mouth, and then pats herself.  Yep, that’s my girl.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


I neglected to write a post on Anna’s 17-month-birthdate, and sadly, I didn’t even think about it until the day after.  (Bad Mom!)

However, I thought today to post because Anna said another new word and I thought, wow, I haven’t blogged her new words recently!

New today: “Done” (“Duh”)

Other new ones: Juice, Book, Sock, Fish, and This.

(Note, she drops most of her consonants at the end, but it’s obvious when she points, etc., that she’s saying something specific.)

These are added to: Uh oh, Mama, Shoes, and Up

Quite the obstinate little lady, so don’t expect her to actually say a word if you ask her too.  *grin*

Our Bubby:


Sunday, September 15, 2013

Guess who’s 16 months old?

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Wow, so much has changed in the last month!

Anna is officially walking… she has slowly been working up to full-on walking the last couple of weeks, but today I found myself noticing the times she crawled as opposed to the times she walked… and that was very little.

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Words are still few, though she does say: uh oh, mama, shuss (shoes), and uh (up) now.  Very cute!  And she’s a chatterer!  She chatters and jabbers and points and generally has learned how to get her point across when she really wants to.  Obviously being a toddler we’re going to have tantrums for quite some time, however, it’s been a nice break that she attempts to tell us what she wants as opposed to throwing one all. the. time.

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She wants to do what her sisters do, eat what her sisters eat, sit where her sisters sit.  Even though she needs her own space, she very much wants to be one of them and isn’t really the “baby” anymore.  Anna and Raven fight over who sits on mom’s lap, and Anna isn’t shy to fight for her spot.

She loves to giggle and laugh.  She loves to be tickled.  Combined, her laughter is a force to be reckoned with.  So contagious!  This weekend we both ended up in a fit of giggles when I grabbed her foot, pretended to tickle it, and she acted as though she was being tickled to death – to funny!

Shoes – girl LOVES LOVES LOVES her shoes.  She tries hard to put them on by herself and will go and get them and bring them to you.  Mama’s girl!  Ha, I love that “shoes” is one of her first words.

Favorite books appear to be Waddle!, Twinkle Toes, and Baby Einstein’s First Words.  Really, she loves to sit with any book in her lap and act like she’s reading.  She’s still not a big fan of being read to, so usually I’ll read a book to the older girls and give her her own book to flip through; I think she’s listening to the story but thinks she has control over the book.

And teeth.  My girl’s got teeth.  I can’t say for sure how many are fully in, but as of a week ago, she was working on four new ones to bring her total up to 16.  My goodness!

Love you Bubby Anna Banana!


Friday, September 13, 2013

Raven is 4!

Middle turns 4 today!  How is it that 4 seems older than 3?  Not a baby anymore, but a preschooler, learning her letters and numbers, learning to write.  She is growing up so fast!

Raven, there aren’t words to express how perfectly you fit into our family.  You are a perfect mix between your older sister and your younger sister.  There is spunk in you to be a great “little sister”, and yet the love you have for your baby sister pours from you and that makes you such a great “big sister”.  No one else could be you; perfectly in the middle, but definitely not lost in our crowd.


I thought I’d interview Raven for you, to give you a little flavor in her life:

Favorite color: PurpleandPink (they ARE one color)

Favorite friend: Avery (at daycare)

Favorite food: Sandwich (bread, cheese, and meat)

Favorite clothes to wear: Skirt and a shirt


Favorite song: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

What do you want to be when you grow up: A ballerina

How old are you: 4

Favorite animal: Elephant


Raven still sleeps with her lovies every night – Sheepie and Elephant.  She also loves Pink and White Blanket.  (We don’t get too creative up in here, apparently.)

She started 4K at daycare this last week; we’ll see how she does this year and whether we (with her teacher) think she is ready for Kindergarten next year.  Amazing how much changes in a year!

We’re prepping for a Minnie Mouse birthday party, and our very first “friend sleepover” (Avery)!  Wish us luck!

Happy Birthday, my dear Raven!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Rules for Kindy

Julia is 1.5 weeks into Kindergarten, and on Day 5, Mom and Dad learned the class rules.

Work Hard

Be Nice

Be Safe

Lincoln Academy practices Core Knowledge Curriculum and these rules are tenants for Kindergarten.  Julia already has them down pat, and we are working on how they apply to home life, and not just school life.


Ways we work on that at home… we work hard on our homework – Mrs. G said she’d send it back home to be worked if it was obvious that it was rushed… we work hard on learning new words, helping parents, and performing tasks around the home.  We are nice to our sisters… which usually isn’t a problem for Julia, but is always something that can be improved on.  Moreover, we use nice language with our parents – please and thank you.  And, being safe – this is one that we’ll have to research a little bit… for example, there is a difference between tattling and ensuring that our family members are safe… and, perhaps we need to reinforce that more, as Julia immediately starts to tattle when one of the girls writes on herself or eats a crayon… but thought nothing about Raven and Anna going outside (IN THE FRONT YARD, NO LESS) by themselves yesterday morning while I was in the shower.  Eek!


Sunday, September 8, 2013

Bath Time!

Someone simply LOVES the bath… she gets a bit irritated with mama when I turn the water off.

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Saturday, September 7, 2013

Plumb Wrong

You never want to walk into your laundry room and step in water.  Ever.  You immediately begin thinking, “when did I last run the washer? did the toilet overflow?  did the sink overflow?  WHAT HAPPENED?”  You stand there and wonder and suddenly… drip.  You feel a drop on your arm and it doesn’t immediately register that your ceiling may be leaking… maybe you splashed too hard on the floor… until you feel… drip, drip, drip.

Sunday, August 4, we started a week of many house fails, and the first being a busted copper pipe.  After feeling those drips and realizing that they were coming from above, I looked UP and saw a bulge – a BULGE – in the ceiling.  My first thought after that was to run to the upstairs bathroom and figure out WHAT was running/leaking/otherwise.  Checking faucets, pulling things out of cabinets, checking the tub and the toilet… nothing.  Everything was fine.

So, when Adam came home, he literally burst the bubble and a flood if disgusting water came rushing into the laundry room.  After a bit of investigating, he determined that the drain pipe from the upstairs sinks had disintegrated and had been leaking into the ceiling for an undetermined amount of time.  Thankfully it is not also the drain pipe for the toilet or tub.

After making the hole much bigger…

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…. to assess and address the problem…

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… my budding plumber was able to fix the pipe himself.  (YAY, Adam!)

However, then we were left with a hole in the ceiling.  THANKFULLY my darling Aunt Chris and Cousin Dru were coming to visit that weekend, and they took on the ceiling without issue – by the time they went home the following Monday, we had a patched ceiling that only required paint – and I finally finished that this last weekend.  YAY!

So thankful that we didn’t have to call a plumber and that we didn’t have a bigger leak than we did… so thankful that we have a drain in our laundry room floor… and, well, while I’m not very happy that it turned out to be the first of a couple of different problems that week, I am very thankful that I have a handy husband.


Friday, September 6, 2013

Angelina Ballerina Camp!

July 29 through August 2 I took vacation from work so that I could ensure that the girls made it to… Angelina Ballerina Camp!  I signed the girls up for camp at Bella Danze Artz so that Julia had something to tide her over until the new dance year started and so that we could determine if Raven really wanted to start dance class.  So much fun!

Adam, Anna, and I ventured to camp on the last day to see the girls’ recital that they learned that week.  They performed a ballet, tap, and lyrical number.

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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cannot. Get. Enough.

Of. This. Girl.


First Day of Kindergarten!

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Julia’s first day of Kindergarten at Lincoln Academy Charter School was today, August 28.  Our little girl has become an Elementary School Student!  We are so proud of her!

While the start was a little rocky and the finish even rockier, the In Between was great, according to Julia… at least, good enough to head back tomorrow!

Upon arriving at school, I got out with Julia to take her EpiPens and Benadryl to the office; she shot off towards Kindy waiting area – I had to call her back for a hug, kiss, and one last photo.  I went to the office; apparently I missed filling out one of the medical papers needed – one I would have found had I “dug just a little deeper on the website” (how do you dig a little deeper if you have no way of knowing you’re in need of doing so…?).  So… I drove the new paperwork out to Lakewood for the doctor to fill it out, and we should have it to school on Tuesday again – I hope!

Julia reported that she had a good day; she learned some new friends (though names escape her), she had yogurt for snack and she ate her lunch, and she played on the playground.

However, things fell apart a bit this afternoon – I received a call close to four from Mrs. G, Julia’s teacher, who was wondering where I was – Julia’s paperwork I had turned in suggested she would be in After Care, however, After Care didn’t have her on the list.  After about 45 minutes of waiting for me to come, Mrs. G decided to take Julia to After Care anyway, and said I would find her there.  And ugh, this was a message, because I just barely missed the call… ugh.

I tried desperately to call back, call the number of the After Care folks (no answer!  no mailbox/voicemail!), and finally called the 800 number for the After Care company.  The confirmed that Julia was indeed enrolled in After Care, but they couldn’t tell me why the site didn’t have her info and why no one could get a hold of anyone… this is what finally broke me.  I didn’t know if my child was handling this all okay, I couldn’t get a hold of anyone who could tell me… ugh again.  I cried most of the way there trying to figure out what to do; thankfully Mrs. G called again to let me know she checked on J before she left and that J had calmed down and seemed fine. 

I finally picked her up at 4:45 pm, and while Julia is a little leery of going back to After Care tomorrow (why aren’t you like the OTHER moms who pick my friends up right at school when school is over?  barf), she is more than willing to go back to Kindy tomorrow, and that’s all that I could ask for.

Rocky start, maybe, but here’s to an awesome year!


ps.  Julia INSISTED she have her picture taken with the van.  HA!

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Big 3-5

I turned 35 today!  WOOHOO!

Adam and I enjoyed a wonderful afternoon together, after I finally roused from my sleeping quarters.  We started with lunch at Alehouse @ Amatos, had ice cream, walked to Denver Beer (but it wasn’t open), and then enjoyed a mas krug at Prost to celebrate their one year anniversary.

I did get a cake, but haven’t dug into it get – the girls and I didn’t have time before we had to go out, and we got home quite late and the girls needed to go to bed.  Methinks I will eat a piece before I go to bed.

Some updates on life around these parts….

My white blood cell count has been coming down, which is expected on the Gleevec (imatinib).  However, my count is lower than “normal”, and while that in and of itself isn’t a problem, the Neutrophil, which is one of the types of white blood cells, count is lower than it should be and if it goes much lower, I could have immunity risk against bacterial infection.  So, I now will start weekly blood tests to monitor the level, and if the level dips too low, I’ll have to go off Gleevec until it rises again, and then I will restart.

You might recall that after Anna was born, I went onto anti-anxiety medication.  I’ve been doing well with it.  This spring I considered going off of it, but quickly being sick and trying to get better consumed me and I never did anything about it.  Well, my doctor determined that potentially my anti-anxiety medication (Celexa) could interfere and cause a negative reaction with the Gleevec, and therefore I am weaning off of it.  Well, I should say, I weaned off of it.  For now I won’t be going onto anything else, as long as I believe that I’m handling any and all anxiety well.

Anna has taken at least two steps a day since Thursday, and today walked quite a bit while we were out – not her main / preferred method of transportation, but I can see the corner.  She is a much happier cat as a result.

Julia is increasingly excited about starting Kindy, and Raven started Pre-K today.  We also start ballet/tap combo for both girls this coming weekend.

Much going on.  Thanks for all of the birthday love today!


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Mah Bebes

Here are pictures of my other two loves.

Raven is less than a month away from FOUR!  We are planning our first sleepover party with friends, and Minnie Mouse is our intended theme (though I believe if she had her way it would be a Bo-on-the-Go-My-Little-Ponies-Minnie-Mouse-Hello-Kitty party).  One of the best smiles on the planet; she always lights me up.  She starts Pre-K and will be in Miss Erika’s class starting next week; so hard to believe my precious baby is almost FOUR!  Love her!

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Julia is five-going-on-fifteen.  She is a School Ager now at daycare, and starts Kindergarten on August 28.  Definitely the Little Mother in our family.  Definitely our Soft Hearted One.  Super duper excited about Big School and starting up ballet again next Saturday.  Gives the best Huggies and Kissies.  Love this girl!

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Not dead yet.

I am continually amazed by the roses on our property; I do nothing to them, and they bloom.  And bloom some more.

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My aunt Chris and cousin Dru came to visit this last weekend, and were TREMENDOUSLY helpful with turning a nasty yard into a beautiful place where I actually want to spend my time.

On one of our many trips to Lowe’s, we eyed the succulents, but we didn’t buy any until Sunday morning.  I had a great desire to create a succulent garden, but didn’t really know where I wanted to do it – then I eyed the bird bath that has sat empty (because duh, we’re in Colorado, and keeping a bird bath full is a daily activity, and I don’t do daily yard activities if I can help it)… and voila, a succulent garden!  Very happy with how it turned out.

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Thank you so much to Chris and Dru for visiting – it was SO wonderful to have you here!  The girls miss you already and have been asking about “Grandma” Chris and “Mom’s Cousin Dru” and where they went.  Hee, hee.  And Adam says thanks for patching the hole in the ceiling… so much less for us to do!


15 Months on the 15th of August

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Anna is 15 months old today!

Anna WALKED tonight for the first time!  (I am so thankful that I was able to witness this milestone for all three of my girls.) As luck would have it, as soon as she started, I said in a rather excited voice, “Oh, Anna, you good girl!” and this freaked her out, she started crying, and she sat down.  Heh.

Anna is down to using the bottle at night.  She uses a sippy cup during the day. We have successfully used the sippy cup at dinner time two days in a row without her pitching it so hard that it breaks.  Progress.

Words: uh oh, mama

Personality: Very obstinate; loving when she wants to be and NOT when she doesn’t; happy when she’s happy and ORNERY when she’s not – very good at throwing tantrums; definitely her own girl – so different than the two older girls!

Food likes: Strawberries still seem to be her favorite

Still 12 teeth.

Going camping for the first time tomorrow night.

Loves her owl blankie, but also has developed a bond with a number of stuffies in her crib.

Still sleeps on her tummy with her butt in the air.

Has transitioned really well to the Tiny Tots toddler room at daycare; naps on a mat without ANY problems – so cool!

LOVES shoes. LOVES.  (Mama’s girl!)

Happy 15 months, Anna!

Love, Mama.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

“I’m a big kid now!”

Anna officially moved to the toddler room today – she’s not a baby anymore!  Sad mama.  Happy girl!

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Monday, August 5, 2013

8/5 Randomness

  • I turn 35 in 2 weeks.  WOOHOO!  Love birthdays and love my birthday!  Super excited for it!  I am taking the day off that day, and Adam and I are talking about different possible ideas for the day.  Should be fun!
  • I have been on Gleevec (imatinib) for about 20 days now.  The main side effect I’m experiencing is bone pain, but that was expected, so other than it being more than a little irritating, I firmly believe it means that things are going well.  Fatigue is also still a problem, but nothing that I haven’t been able to deal with – I’m still working full-time, and other than slacking a bit in the home department, I have been hanging in there.
  • Today I had a procedure called Essure performed.  Essure is a (as close to permanent you can get) permanent birth control.  For all intents and purposes, it is a tubal ligation.  The procedure in and of itself wasn’t so bad, but afterwards I was in a lot of pain, so I spent most of the day sleeping and completely overwhelmed with pain medication.  Doing well now, but of course I am wide awake after sleeping six hours in the middle of the day.  In about three months I’ll have an x-ray done to determine if the procedure worked or not.
  • Thanks to my cube mate, who is Puerto Rican, I have a newfound love of Puerto Rican coffee.  Between that and my French press, I’m in heaven.
  • I still plan on doing a Questions Regarding CML blog post; I just haven’t had much energy to put it together – hopefully soon!
  • Julia starts Kindergarten on August 28th!  I’m so excited for her.  She is BEYOND excited and beyond ready.  I love that she is so excited about school!
  • My aunt Chris and cousin Dru are flying out to visit this week.  Much fun will be had!
  • Raven turns four in a little over a month – cuh-razy!  We waffled between a Bo on the Go, My Little Pony, and Minnie Mouse theme, but we’re going with Minnie Mouse.  I also plan to allow her and Julia to have their very first friend sleepover.  Wish us luck!
  • Anna is communicating better; not necessarily with real words, but with “talking” and pointing to things she wants or needs.  She also is putting a lot more weight on her feet, moving / walking around furniture a lot more, and also letting go and standing solo for a bit of time here and there.  So proud of her!
  • Adam has joined a new band, the Canyon Creek Band.  He will be going on a small tour with them to Arizona in September.  Lots of exciting times ahead!

That’s all for tonight! 


Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sweet Relief

My doctor’s office called this morning – great news!

The insurance company approved the appeal and I am allowed to participate in the drug trial.  I am SO thankful!  What a cost savings for ALL parties involved!  YAY!

I will be stopping by my doctor’s office today to pick up the imatinib so that I can start it today.

YAY!  Thank you for all of the prayers, well wishes, and good thoughts.


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Trial Update

Today my doctor learned why insurance denied my admittance into the trial.  My company is self-insured and uses the insurance company to administer the insurance.  They wrote a clause into the insurance that specifically states that the insured are not allowed to participate in medical trials.  Why?  Because trials can cause more harm than good, and insurance companies don’t want to be on the hook for what might come after.

That being said – my trial arm is the SAME drug I will start NO MATTER WHAT.  And, to add to that, I will be monitored more closely and the pharmaceutical company pays for the drug – really, a win-win for the insurance company.

Today I also learned why I love my doctor so much.  His immediate response was to appeal the insurance company, show the cost benefit analysis for why I should be allowed into the trial, why it’s a benefit for the insurance company, etc.  I’m SO thankful to have such wonderful advocates for me at the Rocky Mountain Cancer Center.

I should know by next Monday or Tuesday; if the appeal is rejected, potentially I could appeal myself or simply choose to start the drugs.  I really hope I don’t have to make that choice, but we’ll see how it goes!

Monday, July 15, 2013


Anna’s official nickname at 14 months old: Bubby.  Even her big sisters call her that now.  Very cute.  And she acknowledges it.  Love.

Anna is 14 months old today.  Tonight we sent her to bed with a sippy cup; she was very mad and fell asleep as far away from it as she could – girlfriend loves her bottle, but school is moving her to the next room in a month and we have 30 days to transition her from a bottle to a sippy cup.  I wish babies understood.  I wish daycare was more flexible with our more lax way of transitioning our kids from one milestone to the next. 

I rocked Anna tonight for a while; the hot tears fell heavy on her head.  It is hard for me to accept that she is my last baby – the last baby from my womb – and that she’s already 14 months old, and I want her to be a baby a little longer.  My heart is broken into a million pieces right now – I thought I had come to terms with not having more children, but every time I see a pregnant woman or a new baby, my heart breaks all over again.  Broken, broken, broken.  At least I will say, Anna was a good last.

(Note: I say this because I want to be open with my feelings; not so that others tiptoe around me or shut news and life away from me to shield me.  Very excited for the babies that my sister-in-law and sister are expecting; at least I will have ones to snuggle!)

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About Anna at 14 months old:

Look: Blond hair (curls at the nape of her neck), blue eyes, but going the way of her sister, Raven (more steel / gray / green)

In her mouth: 12 teeth.  TWELVE.

Favorite food: Strawberries (recently ousting bananas)

Favorite snuggle toy: Owl blankie

Loves to: Dance, go up and down stairs, snuggle with mom or dad, be chased by big sisters, color with chalk on the kitchen floor, sit at the “big girl table”; crawls like a banshee – she can really move!; pick on Raven (someone in our family FINALLY has the ability to pick on Raven); get in her big sisters business.

Current sizes: 2T/24mo (YES, ACK), size 5 shoe (the 4s decided not to fit this weekend!); can fit into 18 month around the waist, but dresses are too short; size 3 diaper

Word: Uh oh.  Still nothing new out of her, though she babbles up a storm.

Loves anything her sisters love; scared of anything her sisters are scared of.  Tonight it was the fly.  I don’t think Anna ever SAW the fly, but the second the big girls started screaming, she immediately decided whatever it was was tear worthy. 

Similar issue with dogs.  The big girls are handling small dogs much better now, but they have instilled a fear in Anna.  And all animals, really. *sigh*

As started to throw tantrums.  Full out, flailing on the floor.  They are quite a site.  She is giving Raven a run for her money in “expressiveness.”

So glad that this little gal is part of our family – I think when it comes to kids, you never know what you’re missing, until they are in your life.  Six years ago I couldn’t imagine my life with three kids; now I cannot imagine my life without them.

Love you, baby girl!



Shout out to the in-laws for the card that drove the theme of today’s post.  And a shout out to everyone who has sent cards, emails, FB messages, gifts, etc. – your love is amazing. 

Things I do know:

- Anna is 14 months old today.  And she shouldn’t be.  (Har.)  I want to write a post just about her later.

- I was admitted into the drug trial.  YAY!  When I start, I have been placed under the imatinib drug arm.  It is good to know what the drug is and what the potential side effects may be.

- My insurance is refusing my admittance into the drug trial.  My doctor has decided to hold off on starting me on a drug hoping that a few more days of pestering the insurance company will get them to cave.  This was sad news to hear today.  I was supposed to start my drug treatment tomorrow; now I am not.

- I have reached my insurance deductible.  I am over halfway to meeting my out-of-pocket max for a single person for one year.  Now insurance starts covering % of my bills.  Yay, this is good, because I received a bill today for $750 and according to the insurance website, another one should arrive next week for $850.  Not yay.

- I am loved.  Greatly.  Thank you!

Things I don’t know:

- When for sure I’ll start the imatinib.

- What side effects for sure I will have.  Hopefully I’ll get over my vanity regarding puffiness quickly, especially if that becomes an actual side effect.

- Why insurance would deny my admittance into the drug trial.  What do they care?  Are they mad they won’t get drug money out of me?  (The drug is free to me for up to 10 years.)

- What I need and when I need it.  I have come to accept this and am resting in the knowledge.


That’s all for now.  I came home from work early today; I am not feeling well.  Mostly tired.  REALLY tired.  A lot tired.  Nine hours of sleep last night and I slept three hours this afternoon.  It scares me that the drugs potentially make me more tired, but I am hopeful.  Thankful for a boss who is understanding.


Sunday, July 7, 2013

Baptism Gown

My dear mother-in-law made the baptism gown for my girls, so it seemed fitting for me to make one for someone else.  A few months ago my sister asked if I would be willing to make a baptism gown for a friend hers using said friend’s wedding gown, and since I’d never done that before, I said certainly, why not?

This is the result.

Very happy with how it turned out; thankful I was able to reuse the majority of the dress and the applique / beading that was originally on it.  I only had to purchase a lining for the skirt.  I even reused the zipper from the original dress in the back; no zippers or buttons added!  Sweet!  All in all, it was an awesome “first gown” project; I thought it would be more difficult than it was, but really, you just commit to destroying a wedding dress and hope that something spectacular results.

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I used McCall’s 3063 Baby Baptism Christening Gown, Suit, Romper, Bonnet for the pattern.  (For those wondering, yes, after a point, I gave up on the pattern and figured it out the rest of the way “my own way.”)