Monday, November 11, 2013

The Veteran I Will Never Forget

Some people have expressed their displeasure that I chose to post a Happy Birthday to my husband and not a Facebook post thanking the Veterans. Well, I have my reasons. 1. I actually DO things to thank veterans, not just post on Facebook, and I choose not to post those on Facebook. 2. My husband is a very kind, selfless man who deserves to have a day that is all his own for his family to celebrate.

However, I still had planned on posting a little something about the veterans, but I never got the chance before things were said since I had to help get my husband ready for work and take care of my child. I have a bit of time, so now I can do that.

I feel the best way I could publicly thank the veterans is by sharing a story of one in particular I had the great privilege of spending some time with. I don't remember how old I was, what grade I was in, or his name, but it was one of the MANY times I went and sang at the Veterans Hospital in my hometown. I had talked to many men and women who believed I was their daughter, or sister and I took on that role to give them a little bit of happiness in that moment. It killed me to leave not knowing if the real daughter or sister would come and visit. But one man in particular really captured my attention. I usually was able to go around and talk to many of the men and women in there, but this man and I spent the whole time talking to each other. He held my hand with tears in his eyes for a long time, not saying anything, just looking at me. When he did speak he told me I had a good heart and asked me to keep using it for good and to bring joy to others with my gift. He had asked me how long I had been singing, why I loved it, things like that. After just chatting about life and him asking me about my goals in life, etc. my choir teacher told us it was time to get going. I gave him a hug and kiss on the cheek and I told him that I would see him again soon, as we were going to sing there again in about a month. He held my hand again and he said that he knew he wasn't going to make it until then. I gave him another hug and told him I would look for him anyways and then thanked him for our chat and his sacrifice. This amazing man told me that he would do it all over again if it meant I would be able to achieve all of the things I wanted to. He asked me to promise him that I would try my hardest to achieve everything I wanted to do with my life and told me that would be the biggest thing I could do to thank him, and the other veterans, I had no problem promising him that. The next time I came I did look for him, he had passed on.... It was hard to sing that day...

Since then I've stumbled and made mistakes, but I've kept that sweet man and my promise to him in my heart. The biggest of those goals I had I've already started to accomplish, marrying a good man and raising a family with him. The rest, I continue to work on every day and I learn new things I want to accomplish every day. I didn't realize when I made that promise that it wouldn't just end once I had accomplished the things I told him I wanted to, but it would continue for the rest of my time on this earth because there would always be new goals to make and keep.

That is how I choose celebrate and appreciate what our servicemen do for us everyday, by keeping a promise I made to an old veteran in the last days of his life. I hope that he looks down on me and is proud of the woman I've become and sees that I'm trying my hardest everyday to keep my promise to him.

Friday, August 23, 2013

I sucked at blogging before...

But holy moly with a baby it's even harder! Last time I posted it was right after Gus was born. He is now 6 months old (I know right? Talk about time flying!) and super energetic! He sits up and rocks on his hands and knees and can take steps, with mom and dad holding him up of course. His favorite toy is his Jumperoo. He goes nuts in that thing! Jumping, rocking, playing with stuff and he loves to talk to the monkey and rhino toys on there. He also LOVES to spin all the things that spin on there. He now says Mom and Dad (hooray!) and LOVES to eat sweet potato baby food. He will grab anything he can get his hands on and put it right in his mouth. He loves to speak what I like to call "Anglish", some of his most common/funny phrases are "ooh gee wah", "Ow doo gay" and "Bwah". He now weighs 20lbs and is about 27 in long and wearing 12 month clothes, he's my little linebacker.

Motherhood has been quite the ride. Sleepless nights, frustration, puke, poop, pee. You name it. But what's even better are the hugs, laughs, smiles and kisses. The satisfaction of seeing your little one figure something new out is priceless. When he discovered his toes it was the cutest thing. He gets so excited about all the new things and that just makes me so happy. I love to watch the little wheels in his head turn. I watch him spin things and move things on his jumperoo and you can just see in his eyes that he is concentrating really hard and learning. It's so incredible. He watches what Colin and I do and tries to mimic it. That's how he figured out how to eat food. I fed him while Colin was eating and he figured it out! He watches daddy on the computer and now wants to press all the buttons. Everywhere we go, someone stops and talks to Gus and tells me how adorable he is. He of course milks that for all it's worth and totally turns on the charm. 6 months and already a little flirt! Thankfully he flirts with Mommy the most! Sometimes he's so cute, it becomes a cuteness overload and I just have to kiss the kid 50 million times on the cheek!

Colin and I wouldn't trade this for the world. Gus has brought a joy into our home and our lives that we could have never imagined. Our house may not always be spotless, we may listen to kid shows and noisy toys all day. Our house may have been taken over by all sorts of baby products, but it's all part of the fun. We love our little boy more than anything in this universe, besides each other of course. Gus is always on our mind. We sit in bed at night looking at pictures, videos and telling stories about all the silly things he does. Most of all, our home is filled with smiles and laughter. We couldn't ask for anything better!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Angus is Here! My birth story!

It's been, oh... 14 weeks since I last posted! The last little bit of my pregnancy was rough. I had a bunch of contractions and pain and such. Just getting back at me for my easier than normal first/second trimesters! At 34 weeks I went to the hospital because I was seeing stars and such. Wanted to make sure I wasn't developing pre-eclampsia. Ended up staying there for 5 hours on New Years Eve with contractions and had to have them stopped. Pretty crazy! After that I continued to have contractions, but not as regularly. I was put on light bed rest. 36 weeks comes around and I get off bed rest and was told to walk walk walk and start getting those contractions (you just can't win haha!) Feb. 3rd I went to the hospital because my contractions were 4-5 minutes apart for a few hours, then they got more intense and closer together. After being monitored for 3 hours with NO progress I was sent home. My blood pressure had been much higher than it had been my whole pregnancy starting at 37 weeks as well. I was contracting regularly then as well. Still no progress! After a long while of these regular contractions without any progress and the fact that my blood pressures had been elevated, at 38 weeks we scheduled an induction for Feb. 12th 2013. I was to go to the hospital at 7:30 to start Cytotec.

So fast forward to that day. I went to see my doctor at 2:30 that day. She checked my progress, none made of course, and then discussed what was going to be happening at my induction that night. She is the sweetest doctor. She told me I would do wonderful and that she was so proud of me and couldn't wait to meet the little man! About an hour after my check, I started getting more painful contractions. My parents and sister arrived at about 4pm and we went and got dinner at Memphis Championship BBQ. My contractions continued to be regular but increased in intensity. Finally 7pm rolls around and we headed to the hospital! When we got there I signed in and met my first nurse, Mindee. She was so professional and sweet! We did the normal. Got changed, answered a bunch of questions, basically signed away my life. Then I got checked again (no progress, go figure). Then they gave me the Cytotec. About an hour later with a lot of pain I decided to take some pain meds, boy they made me giggly and then made me fall asleep. When I woke up, I was in loads of pain! It was awful... So the nurse came in and checked me again! Finally I had progress, and enough to get an epidural, you can bet your butts I was ALL over that! After what seemed about an eternity (only about 15 min really) the anesthesiologist came in and gave it to me. Seriously, the most amazing thing ever. I fell asleep for about 2 hours and when I woke up I was feeling a lot of pressure, at first I thought it was from the catheter. Because of that they checked me again. I went from 4cm to 8cm dilated in 2 HOURS! Crazy! So I called my parents and told them to get there fast. They got there about 20 min. later. They all came in and checked on me and I was at 9cm at this point. My dad and sister went out to the lobby and my mom and Colin stayed with me. I started feeling like I needed to push right after they walked out the door, so I was checked again and lo and behold I was at 10cm!!! So they called the doctor to come and asked me to try not to push. Well, easier said than done... They decided to let me try, but I was too strong and if I had kept up at that rate the baby would have gotten there before the doctor so I had to keep from pushing again. That was seriously the HARDEST part. Working against what my body is naturally supposed to do is far from easy and it exhausted me. So by the time the doctor got there, I wasn't half as strong as I had been. But after an hour of pushing, I was holding my little boy in my arms! He is so absolutely perfect!



Saturday, November 10, 2012

Moving on up!

Well, I'm failing at this blogging thing, but I'm going to keep at it. Today I am 26 weeks! It doesn't feel like it's been that long! I can feel Angus get stronger every day! He is *almost* kicking me in the ribs now! Colin and I really enjoy feeling him kick and punch and move around in there. It's neat to feel something that you made actually move and react to you! Angus and I have a fun game where I poke my tummy and he kicks me back, great mother/son bonding time already! I also make sure I play James Taylor daily, he will learn what good music is, quite young! I'm also officially in the double digit countdown! I was beginning to feel like I don't have much time to set stuff up, although I know that's nesting talking haha! But not being able to put stuff together, get stuff for my little man and make sure that I have all the stuff I need was getting to be frustrating! On top of all that I was beginning to feel so cluttered in this apartment, sure it's a big apartment, but Colin has gathered 29 years of stuff, and I have gathered 21 years of it. Total that's like 50 years of gathering stuff! Ok, so it's not THAT bad yet, but my kitchen was the worst part. I didn't have a place to put my big cookie sheets and cake pans other than on the counter! No pantry means that food goes in clear storage boxes or the table. Which brings me to the most exciting part... WE ARE MOVING! It's just 3 min. away, still in my ward, but it's a beautiful 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom home! The backyard has lots of room for us to garden and BBQ and have friends over. The kitchen has a pantry, plenty of cabinet space, and lots more counter space! It also comes with a nice microwave, way better than what we have and it's an over the oven one! Angus' nursery is literally right next to our room. And we will have plenty of room in our bedroom for a bassinet! For a "starter" house, it's a pretty good one! We aren't just getting a step up in living conditions, more like 10 steps up! Every time we go there and drop stuff off we just wish we could stay there for good and we both have big goofy grins on our face! 

In other news, I have my 3D/4D ultrasound on Dec. 5th! Not only am I super excited to see my handsome little boy, I get to see my parents! We planned it so that they could come to it! I haven't had my family around much for the pregnancy which makes me sad :( so I made sure to plan it so they could be here for it! They are both really excited! And I'm super excited because I miss my family! They also never got to go to an ultrasound for themselves, since both me and Emma are adopted, so I figured next best thing is to have them come to one to see their very first grandchild! And when they come they will have their own room to sleep in! All in all, life is good and exciting! We are SO blessed!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

As Fate Would Have It!

So before I get to the fun stuff, lets get the pregnancy stuff out of the way, which is also fun, but that's not "news" anymore. Everyone knows I'm pregnant :) Today I am a whopping 24 weeks! Only 3 more till I'm in the homestretch, the THIRD trimester! And in 13 days I will only have 99 days till I meet my little Angus! I have this strange feeling he is going to come early though. Just a feeling, call it Mothers Intuition. About a week or so ago Colin and I were sitting on the couch watching TV and Angus started kicking like crazy!!! I feel him kick a lot, but this was just, different! Usually he likes to stop when Colin tries to feel but he had his hand on my tummy for a good 5-7 minutes and Angus was kicking really hard the whole time! I had to try not to laugh and ruin it because Colin's reactions were just so cute! They consisted of lots of "wow", "that was a strong one", and "geez kid!". And now to embarrass my husband a little, he admittedly had his hand on my belly one night after I fell asleep and he said that Angus was kicking pretty hard and he wondered how I was even able to sleep through it. I guess I've just got used to it :)

Here is the fun story, and the reason I have the blog title I do:

Last summer as many of you know Colin and I were working in Alaska. Well the day we found out that Colin did in fact get the job at Maverick it was right before we were getting a flight ready to go. Colin came and pulled me to the back real fast, which he rarely did unless he had something REALLY cool to tell me and told me that in December we would be moving to Henderson! Well, me being as excited as I was went back out and I was telling one of my coworkers about it. This vivacious red headed lady came up to me excitedly and told me that's where she and her husband were from! So of course we chatted and she was telling me how Vegas gets such a bad rap and that it's a terrible place for a family, etc. but that where she and her husband lived and where she grew up was actually a fantastic area. It was a place in Henderson called.... Green Valley! So the time came for groups to be formed, and I was disappointed I didn't have them in mine, but my friend had them in hers and she happened to be the Tour Attendant for.... COLIN! So I told them so they could let him know that they talked to me :) He got a break afterward the tour so the 4 of us were able to talk while they waited for their bus. We exchanged information and said goodbye. After the moves I lost the stuff with their information (moving from AK to WA and then WA to NV is a lot of miles to travel, easy for things to get lost!) Time has passed and this morning I got an email from Debi (the vivacious red head haha) and she was asking if we ended up in Vegas (Henderson=Vegas haha) and that she and her husband hoped that we got settled well and that they were thinking of us and would love to get together and do dinner if we were in Vegas! So of course, I emailed her back telling her we would love to get together! Now, looking back at the place we ended up due to their suggestions was the place we were supposed to live. The Stake we live in is amazing and the Ward is even more amazing! Just more proof to me that Heavenly Father puts people in the right place at the right time to help us along the way. In this case our "angels" were Debbi and Darrell! Without them who knows where we would have ended up. The choice to live in Green Valley literally has affected almost every choice we've made, including getting our sweet kitties! And now, we have the chance to keep nurturing a relationship with them! Who knows what else the future holds!

Friday, October 12, 2012

California Dreamin'

I have this strange feeling that tomorrow I won't want to do this... So I'm doing it a day early! Saturdays SHOULD be my blog days since I have to post my baby update too, so we are going to aim for that every week.. See how well that works out...

So, California. I want to go back to the beach, like, right now! I had NEVER in my life experienced a beach like that. I'd seen the ocean in AK, and the "beach" which is more of a rocky beach, not really one you can take long, barefoot walks on during the sunset... And the waves! Oh the waves were fun! This was the honeymoon Colin and I never got. Not like it was super honeymoon-ish since I have a this baby bump, we've been married for over a year and a half.. Pretty sure we spent more time out of the hotel room than most newly-weds do haha! Pretty much every opportunity we got we were either doing some fun activity, at the beach, or sleeping due to pure exhaustion! Ok, I was sleeping, Colin would be browsing the internet! So the romantic things were mainly outside, like, long walks on the beach at sunset, fancy dinners, spending time out on the ocean on a boat, playing in the waves like two kids, going to the zoo and SeaWorld. Definitely exciting and fun and definitely something that Colin and I needed! We don't have much alone "us" time left since our Angus will be joining us shortly! This was our first real vacation together since being married. We have moved a lot, and seen a lot, but we have never just up and left for a few days together to go do fun stuff like that! Best part, Colin was paid while we were gone! SCORE! Paid vacations are the bomb!

First day we went to the San Diego Zoo. That place is massive.... I really enjoyed it, but I was miserable by the end. My feet hurt, my back hurt, I was grumpy due to some jerkface seeing that I was standing, watching the pandas and DELIBERATELY coming and standing in front of me to take a picture... that is playing with fire boys and girls... Don't piss off a tired, sore, hungry pregnant woman, EVER. But overall I really enjoyed it! Would I go again... eh not unless someone rented me an electric wheel chair. I'm sure Angus will want to go eventually, so I probably don't have any choice. I did however find my favorite bear of all time. The Sloth Bear. Oh. My. Gosh. Cutest thing ever! And he dances!

Next day we decided to go to SeaWorld. I enjoyed that MUCH more. It's so much more interactive and educational! Plus, there are plenty of air conditioned buildings and places to sit! I was SUPER excited about the penguins! I love penguins, a lot! If Colin would let me I would have a zoo, full of penguins! He keeps saying no, but I will never stop asking haha! We fed Sea Lions, saw "One Ocean" and "Blue Horizons", trained a sea star to "stay", and pet Bat Rays. I think that was my favorite part out of all of it! The shows were amazingly fantastic, but when we were petting the bat rays this one little guy came up to my hand and put his head right into it wanting me to pet him! It was an incredible feeling to bond with a creature like that. Colin had a bigger one come up and do the same thing. I could have stayed there all day!

My most favorite part of vacation though was going out into the ocean with my Colin and playing in the waves! We got out pretty far, into some fairly strong waves and when the stronger waves would hit we would stand together and hold on for dear life. It reminded me of what a good relationship should be, what we have. We have our disagreements and struggles but when push comes to shove, we will stand together when the waves hit trying to break our family apart. I am so very very blessed that I am married to this wonderful man. He treats me like what I am, a daughter of God. He loves me and respects me. And he works really hard to pay the bills and support me and to pay for amazing vacations! In the words of Queen:

You're the best friend that I ever had
I've been with you such a long time
You're my sunshine and I want you to know
That my feelings are true
I really love you
Oh you're my best friend

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Halfway there and Livin' on a Prayer

Well boys and girls, I've survived half of my pregnancy! Go me! Colin survived it too, but other than occasional mood swings and having to bring me home what I'm craving... correction... what ANGUS is craving..  he has had it pretty easy! Flip, I've had it pretty easy! Only one little bout of morning sickness, a few weeks of awful headaches, fatigue, and heartburn and I'm halfway done. This pregnancy is so easy! But I'm not holding my breath that the next one will be, so keep in mind that I said this was easy and feel free to rub it in my face when I'm complaining about who knows what next time around. But I feel I deserve an easy pregnancy after all the downright awful pain I felt every month for years, and the year plus I spent trying to even get pregnant! Especially due to the crazy events 76 days prior to getting pregnant. Excuse me for a second while I go knock on wood.... If I don't this pregnancy is sure to get difficult haha.

Oke doke, I'm back! So, what does being 20 weeks pregnant feel like for Hannah McDaniel? Something like this.....

Kick, kick kick, roll around, kick, roll, kick kick kick kick kick, roll.. Crap bathroom break, run! Kick kick, roll, kick...

Get the point haha? And it's only going to get more intense! I mean, I'm only halfway through! It's one of those moments where you have to decide if you will look at the glass half full or half empty. I choose half full, because even though my darling boy and his kicking sometimes keeps me awake, or makes me randomly get up off the couch and run to the bathroom, it is SO MUCH FUN to feel him wriggling around in there! The other night he was rolling around a lot (and like he is doing as I type this) and it kinda felt like someone taking their fist and rolling it around on your skin, but from the inside of my stomach... Quite bizarre but really cool! Colin was even able to feel him rolling around in there, it was pretty funny. And for a little guy (He's only the size of a small cantelope.. whatever that means lol) he has some pretty strong kicks! That makes me feel good because I know he is healthy.

On an unrelated, well unrelated to me being kicked in the stomach 24/7, the last ultrasound I had where the 3D place confirmed the mistake made by their tech. The tech who was doing this scan told me that I had GREAT amniotic fluid (aka baby pee, but good amniotic fluid is not so urine-y lol) So I told Colin that not only to I make perfect babies, but I help make great amniotic fluid. I'm a Rock-star baby making machine boys and girls!

Something else I am oh so excited about... Angus can hear me talk and sing now AND hear music from the outside! Time to break out the Mozart! I love that I'm involved in church choir so that my little man can hear his mommy sing. I can't wait till he starts responding to his Dad's voice too :)

 Me being pregnant and all, I love to watch shows like "A Baby Story" and I love it when they put the little baby on it's mom for the first time how they just cuddle up into their mom. As Brian Regan said, the first few moments of a baby's life, if you think of it from the baby's perspective, are pretty terrifying. Lets do that now, close your eyes and imagine being a baby being born... Here is how I imagine it: After months of being cuddled up in a warm comfortable place you are now being pushed out of it through something very small, then you get to the cold world, some strange person is grabbing you and everyone is cheering and excited and it's really loud, not muffled like it used to be. Then you have this cord thing that has been stuck to you for months cut off and tied up, how strange! After that you get to be with a familiar sounding voice and be cuddled and loved. That has got to be pretty comforting after all that! And even then the poor little human has to be poked and prodded and stuff. I'm glad I was too young to remember any of that!

Anyways, I think I've rambled on about baby stuff long enough! I will let you all get back to your regularly scheduled programming.


After this advertisement from our sponsor:

Isn't he cute!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Well, Surprise!!

My little "Princess" is actually a little PRINCE! Amazing! So that road we took to find out what our little baby is, wasn't over with that last blog! Of all the people that would happen to, it would be me! (Side-note, as I type this Magoo is watching the words appear on the screen and it's oh so interesting. What sort of black magic is that Magoo!? I love my cat.... lol) So how did we find this out you ask? The story is too funny!

We had a regular scheduled ultrasound at my OB office to make sure that our little one was growing and developing the way *he* should. So we get back there and the tech was checking everything out and I decided I needed to have her double check what the sex is. As she is scanning over the privates Colin and I had the same thought as we looked at the screen... "that wasn't there last time" The tech then said "I have news for you two, you are having a boy, not a girl!" So then I showed her the picture of the "girl" parts and she said that it didn't look like girl parts at all and that she would have told us that it looks like a boy but wouldn't have given us a 100% this is what it is thing. Colin and I couldn't stop laughing haha! It was so funny! I have no complaints though. We bought one dress and that's it so it's no big loss! And I go back into this place on Tuesday, they will scan, see it's a boy and then I get either a refund or a free $155 package later in my pregnancy. I choose the free package since Mr. Angus wouldn't cooperate the first two times, maybe we can get better pictures this time :-)

So, long story short.... We are having a boy!

Friday, September 7, 2012

17 Weeks!

Time is flying by! I can't believe that I've been pregnant for 4 months now! It really has been a lot easier than I ever expected it to be! Lets hope the next 3 (hopefully 4) pregnancies are this easy! The one bout of morning sickness I had was enough to make me NEVER want to have it! My little Princess has been growing so fast. I can tell because I feel a lot more round ligament pain than I did before. I'm to the point where sometimes I feel like I've been doing ab workouts! Along with Princess growing, my tummy is growing, which means more pressure on my feet when I'm up and around and my back hurts a lot more. I'm very excited because I get to see her again on the 11th of this month! One of the most beautiful sights in the whole world is watching my little girl kick and punch and bounce, just move around. She is so chill, I hope she stays that way! According to my parents I was a pretty chill little baby and started sleeping through the night at a pretty early age, so maybe she will too, I won't complain if she does :) haha!

I'm so thankful that we are having this little Princess! I just pray every day that we will be able to raise her well and that she always knows how much we love her. I couldn't be happier that we are having her, I know that Heavenly Father sent Colin and I a daughter first because that was what was best for all of us. It's no mistake, it was planned out. That is why I had no hopes for what our little one was. I just wanted what we were supposed to have first, and apparently that was a little girl. That's good enough for me, and if that isn't good enough for anyone else, they can just deal with it. This is OUR baby, and if Colin and I are happy, then everyone else just needs to be happy for us. I only say that because it seemed like a few people were disappointed that it wasn't a boy. If this is what God had planned then that makes her better than any boy. When we get a boy, is when we should have a boy. And that's the truth. She is just as special and exciting as any little boy would be. She is my little miracle. I went to hell and back to get to where I am right now. It wasn't easy! The fact that I even got pregnant when I did is amazing to me. Heavenly Father had his hand in it completely and I feel so blessed and loved by Him because of him. I love my little family :)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Baby Girl!

It was a long road to find out what our little person is but the whole road was so fun and special! Nothing better than watching your little baby kick and punch you! One thing that sets her aside from other little ones (at least for the tech) was her bouncing. She looks like she is in a bouncy chair bouncing up and down haha! First time we came in she was doing that and then a week later we come in, and she is in the same position, and she starts bouncing! The tech said: "Oh I remember you now! You have the bouncing baby!" The coolest part for me, being the mom and actually being the one growing this tiny human girl is that when I see the ultrasounds, I see what this little girl is doing in me, it's so neat to see what she is doing that I might not always feel :) I do believe I've felt her move though! I was hesitant to be sure of that at first, but, at my last appointment my doctor asked me if I thought I had felt any movement and I explained to her what I felt and when I felt it and she said she could safely say that was tiny baby kicks (now they only feel like I'm gently scratching my arm with my nails, just from the inside of my belly haha.) I don't feel it often, but if I really sit or lay still and pay attention I can feel it sometimes.

When we FINALLY found out we were having a little girl, we had come back to the ultrasound office and she was in the exact same position as before with  her little legs covering her girly parts. So the tech said, well lets just take a look at the rest of her anatomy and hope she moves enough to see. So we found her little toes, watched her kick and punch, the tech was moving the probe around and all of the sudden she says "It's a girl! Look!" and low and behold, yes she was definitely a girl! It was so exciting! I've already started looking at bedding and color themes etc. I don't know if I want bright and colorful, or classy and subdued. I'm sure I will find something and fall in love with it!

The pregnancy, other than headaches, is SO easy! No complications or anything! I've had morning sickness once and thrown up, but other than that it's been so easy! I have hormonal/emotional moments, but compared to what I could be dealing with, I got the good end of the deal! On Saturday I will only have 5 more months to go! Can't wait to meet my baby girl!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Wondering about the new "and counting" part of my title??

So, if you haven't already heard Colin and I are expecting a little one! We are so excited! I thought it was impossible for me to get pregnant when I did due to not having a period for 76 days. Cool right? Yeah, I was pretty depressed there for a while, I was positive I was broken! But lo and behold, June, 14th 2012 I got a positive pregnancy test! I had no symptoms that I can really remember or anything. Went to the doctor, had it confirmed and now that's history!

On July 2nd 2012 We had the first ultrasound! So exciting! We get to the office at 1:45 (google maps told us it'd take 19 minutes to get there, the MotionX GPS on my phone changed that to 10 min haha) and my appointment was at 2. I sign in, we pay, they call back to the Ultrasound Tech, Diane, and about 5 minutes later we were back in the room. Since my last "period" was on March 1st, they had me at 17 weeks along, so she of course was going to try the external ultrasound first. Nothing showed up so she said, "you must be 7 weeks we need to do an internal ultrasound to see the baby" So got all geared up for that and she found the little baby! Before she zoomed in it just looked like this little sac, but it was the cutest little sac ever! Then she zoomed in to that little 1.14 cm. baby and you could make out some small features! She then showed us where the heart was. It's only 1mm! SO SMALL! But boy was it a strong little heart! Baby McDaniel's first heard heartbeat was going strong at 152 bpm! When Colin heard the heartbeat his response was "wow!" Talk about the understatement of the year! I peeked over at Colin for a moment and his face was PRICELESS, on top of the baby, that face makes all the pain, sickness, restless nights and endless bathroom trips worth it! Then she found the face, complete with two little eyesockets and a mouth! Cutest alien baby face ever! Of course I said "aw how cute!" to which Diane responded "only a mother could say that is cute!" I am proud to say that as of today I am a Mother of a 7week 3day old baby who couldn't get more healthy! I look forward to finding out the sex of my little baby so I can start calling "baby" (who I sometimes call my little parasite because on the rare occasion I actually feel somewhat full, 5 min later my tummy is rumbling again!) by his/her name! And most importantly.. I can't wait for Feb. 16th 2013 to meet my little one!

July 26th 2012 we had our second Ultrasound and they got to do the one on the belly! Baby went from 1.14 cm. to 2 in.! It was also being stubborn! The tech tried to get the little fart to move but it just sat there haha. The heart rate was at 159bpm! The baby couldn't be more perfect!

August 1st. 2012 had my second doctors appointment! Doctor listened to the heart beat. Took a minute to find it. All you could hear for a while was my heart beat then all of the sudden you heard a much faster one, that was obviously baby's! Every time I hear the heart beat I am amazed and relieved! I love my little one so much already!

(Something I just realized... I was supposed to be due Feb. 26th! But I decided to come a little late. A little being 11 days... Maybe baby will be 10 days late and come on my original due date haha! This should be interesting! But the coolest part is that my baby was due the same month I originally was due in! Cool eh!?)

Edit: So today I am 12 weeks, I put up my ultrasound pictures on facebook after my second doctors appointment because I was mid 11 weeks and I have had no complications at all. No spotting or awful cramps or anything! It's been a breeze! I definitely look pregnant now! I'm going to be monstrous at 9 months haha! From now on I should be writing blogs after ultrasounds and doctors appointments so they shouldn't be this long anymore! :) I will add some pictures down here at the bottom for everyone's viewing pleasure!

Pregnancy test!



7 week baby! 1.14 cm


Heart beat 152 bpm



10 week baby 2 in.


Heart beat 159 bpm

My favorite picture! So clear and so up close and personal with Baby McDaniel

11/12 week bump!



Saturday, May 5, 2012

Blessings

This past month has been quite the roller coaster of emotions for me. As many are aware of, my Dad had open heart surgery to replace a bad valve in his heart. I'm glad to say that he is back home and recovering quickly. I learned a lot about myself, and my family during this trial and I got a much stronger testimony of relying on my Heavenly Father to help get us through the tough times.

Colin and I arrived on Tuesday, April 9th so we would be able to spend the next few days with my Dad. Another thing I was thankful for is that my Dad was able to get a blessing from a family member, my sweet husband. My Dad just has us girls, but since I got married, he now has a son-in-law who can give him priesthood blessings. The first week I was home, my parents were in Phoenix. They left on a Thursday, surgery was the next day on Friday (Friday the 13th for that matter, thank goodness we aren't superstitious!) and a week after the surgery he was home. One of the hardest things I've ever had to see in my life was seeing my dad in excruciating pain. To make it worse, there was nothing I could do to make it go away. All I could do was pray and ask Heavenly Father to help my dad have the strength to deal with the pain, or if it was His will, to relieve it a little, which He did both. To make everything harder, I didn't have my husband with me. I had to be the strong one for my sister. I had to be her shoulder to cry on. Thankfully I had a lot of people praying for me as well and that gave me the strength I needed.

To add even more to the mix by the time I got to my parents I was 12 days late, for the second time since I've been trying. The surgery wasn't enough to stress me out to that extent because I KNEW everything would be alright, it wouldn't be easy, but it would be OK. Time went on and still no period, and no positive pregnancy tests either. This is also happening the month where I have reached my "been trying for a year" mark! I even got a blood test done and it came back negative. Today, 35 days later, I still have no period or positive test. I have now missed 2 periods, not just 1. I do however FINALLY have a doctors appointment! I'm praying they will be able to help! It is a giant leap forward after this last month of stepping backward.

This part of my life has been far from easy, and it's still not over. But I am so thankful for a Heavenly Father who cares and listens to our prayers AND answers them. I am thankful for family and friends who give love and support during our trials. With Heavenly Father and my family and friends by my side, I know I can get through anything!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Birthday Fun and Moving Torture and a few little updates!

Well, I got to celebrate my birthday for almost an entire week! Started off the Monday before when we drove to my parents place. Now a month or so earlier, my microphone on my phone stopped working so I had to get a bluetooth. When we were stopped in Boulder City getting gas we decided to switch and let me drive to PV since I would have to make the drive alone on the way back. I tried to get my sunglasses out of my purse and they were stuck on something, so of course I did something really stupid and pulled on them really hard and ripped my bluetooth charger in half! Of course! That would happen to me! So it was decided that Tuesday we would go get me a new bluetooth charger or if we couldn't find one, a new bluetooth. Tuesday morning my Dad was changing the name of his Real Estate company so I went with him to help him get the signs out, put new ones up and sign the paperwork for the name change while Colin went to do his flight physical he has to do every year. Once he was done he came and picked me up and we headed off to Best Buy to get my charger/bluetooth. So here we are looking and looking and we learned that they didn't sell replacement bluetooth chargers! They didn't even have the bluetooth I wanted and I figured that if I had to get a whole new one, might as well get the same kind so both me and Colin could have a bluetooth or that I could just have a back up one and they could just share a charger. So we are standing there trying to figure out our next move when Colin said "We might as well just get you your birthday present now! Lets go to Sprint and find you a new phone. Do you want an Iphone or a different type of smart phone?" Boy did that throw me for a loop! We had talked about him getting his upgrade soon and me getting his old phone, but the sneaky boy used that as a cover up so I couldn't guess my present haha. He is so good to me :) So, I got an Iphone! Then we went to lunch at Fuddruckers where my parents gave me a beautiful real pearl necklace (just one pearl on it. It was in a setting called the tulip or something like that, and those are my favorite flowers) with matching earrings. Absolutely gorgeous! Then we went and picked up a few gifts for my BFF Robin who's birthday is a month earlier then mine. I had been planning a surprise double birthday party for the two of us, not a surprise for me obviously, but for her it was! She had no clue ;) I rock like that! Colin and I made a dinner of Pork chops, garlic mashed potato, and creamed broccoli. It was a hit! For dessert my Dad made his dutch oven peach cobbler which was AMAZING! Then we opened gifts and Robin, Emma and I watched Emperors New Groove together, quoting almost every line.

Wednesday we got up, went and got the U Haul and our first stop was at my Dads office to get our new table and chairs! Then we headed to my parents and packed everything else up and we hit the road! After a 4 hour drive (with the only thing I saw the entire trip was a big U Haul truck in front of me.  How boring is that?) we got home and started to get all of the stuff out of the truck and into our apartment (we felt like we had a pretty big place until we got all our boxes into our apartment lol). What a long day. We had the Elders Quorum President come help us move the big things in, but other than that we did it all ourselves! By the end of it we were both tired and grouchy. We tried to return the truck, but we were so tired we couldn't find the drop box for the keys! So we took it back home and turned in for the night. Next day when we returned the truck.... we found the drop slot... in the door. Right where we were looking.

We still have a lot of unpacking to do, we are going to move most of the boxes into the storage place around the corner from us. It's a slow process but it will get done eventually. Thankfully we have OUR bed back now :) That is the sliver lining to the whole thing!

Also, in an earlier post I told y'all that Colin and I were trying to get pregnant. It has now been almost 11 months of trying. Next month we will have insurance so I am going to go to the doctor, but we are no longer officially trying. If it happens, it happens. Colin is going to have to work a really busy summer and I just need a break from the stress of it all.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Valentines Day in Prescott!

So this Valentines Day was our first as a married couple but our THIRD as a couple. Yeah I know, crazy! Our first and second valentines day we didn't have any money to our names so we did it small scale, this year was different! On Friday, Colin got paid, we paid all of our bills and STILL had money to burn! So Colin said "How about we go to Prescott next week?" Of course I was ALL over that! So Monday afternoon (after the longest weekend of my life haha) we headed to Prescott (Which felt like the longest drive of my life! I really wanted to go home!) Next morning we went out to breakfast with one of Colin's old coworkers so Colin could help him study for his new job. After that we went our separate ways to get stuff for each other for Valentines Day. I had already gotten him Skyrim the Saturday before so that he could play it as soon as he got it and he wouldn't have to wait till Wednesday afternoon. I still wanted to give him something other than a card ON Valentines Day (I like to spoil my husband) I had no idea what to get him though! So I enlisted the help of my Dad (smartest idea EVER). He suggested getting him a new wallet, which I thought was a genius idea. So we headed to Kohls and started the search. Long story short, we found him a really nice, cool looking, leather wallet that had a lot of storage space (which he needs). We met him at my dads office and he showed up with a beautiful arrangement of Tulips (my favorite flower). He picked the tulips out and the florist put them together. She liked the two types of tulips he picked so much that she is going to make more arrangements like that! (So if you see Yellow and red tulip arrangements in Safeway in Prescott Valley Colin came up with it just for me! Cute huh?) Now if that wasn't enough he went into Bath and Body Works by himself and got me bath salts, lotion, and a candle (that were all Vanilla Verbana, which he picked because he liked it. Probably good because he is the one that has to smell me most of the time lol) and of course he got me a card (which was SUPER sweet!) At 4 we went to dinner with my family at Prescott Brewing Company so Colin could get his favorite burger of all time, the Burmister. It was by far the best Valentines day I've ever had! I'm looking forward to many more of them with my Forever Valentine.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Spirit in Kennewick, WA

This "tree" started off as a little weed growing in a crack in the sidewalk on Columbia Center Blvd. in Kennewick, WA. Someone put one lonely little ornament on there and after a few days more and more ornaments showed up. Then Santa came and decorated the little weed as well and turned it into a Christmas Tree. Gotta love the Christmas Spirit!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Writing it all out

So, some of you may know that for the past, oh I don't know 7 months, Colin and I have been trying to get pregnant, with no success. For those who didn't, now you do.  This has been one of the hardest trials for me thus far in my 20 years. Month after month of disappointment. The months that I get some symptoms that turn out to be nothing but hormonal/bodily changes are the worst. I've gotten to the point that I can't even read any posts, blogs, emails, etc from my friends about their baby luck without getting depressed and crying (so for those of you who are pregnant that's why you never hear from me, nothing personal). Now, I'm not writing this to get sympathy or to complain, it is just so much harder to deal with when close to no one knows the journey I am on right now. Mainly though I am doing this for myself. To get all of my feelings out in front of me so I can read them and let them go. Sometimes you just need to write it all out to get it off your mind and begin to relax. If this continues by the time we have some money together (very soon!) I will go to the doctor about it. Hopefully whoever I see can give me some answers. I have been mostly successful at realizing that this is all in the Lords hands and even though I feel like it is time, the Lord may have other things in mind. I've prayed, every day for this. 11:11 rolls around I wish for it. Most of my time in the Temple is spent praying for this. I know that  Colin and I are ready, or else we wouldn't have agreed to start trying in the first place. I know that going to school and being a mom will be hard, but I know I can do it. All that is left is to have faith that whatever the Lord knows is best for us will happen when it is the right time.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Pinterest DIY skin care trial :)

So, as you all well know, I am ADDICTED to Pinterest! I love that site! So here shortly (after Colin starts getting good paychecks) I will be starting to try out some DIY stuff for our home and I will be starting a new blog for that specifically. Today I tried out some of the homemade skin care products and found two that I am very fond of, especially when used together that I thought I'd share :)

1. Baking soda scrub: This is only to be used ONCE a week since it's used to exfoliate your skin. While on it has kind of a tingling sensation but once you wipe it off your skin looks and feels way better. The best part is it has only 2 ingredients that you use everyday.

3 Tbs Baking Soda
1 Tbs Water (may need more, I like my masks to be a little bit more runny, yet still able to stay on my face)

Mix them together to form a paste (again whatever consistency you prefer) and apply to clean, make-up-less face in a circular motion. Let sit 5 min and then rinse off. I tried doing that with a wash cloth and it didn't work as well as I wanted. I suggest getting most of it off with a wash cloth for the exfoliation and then rinse the rest off your face off with warm water.

After you have done that create a honey and milk mask it is very soothing and will help relieve some of the burn while moisturizing and cleaning your pores.

Honey and Milk Mask:

1 1/2 Tbs Milk
1 Tbs Honey
Make-up brush

I will give the directions for the microwave and the stove-top, but I prefer stove-top since I can control the mixture better.

Stove-top: In a small pot, mix together milk and honey, whisk until warm and the two ingredients are combined. Take a make-up brush and apply the mask to your face. It will be a little drippy at first, but keep a paper towel near and wipe off the drips (most likely from your nose and chin haha) once the honey has cooled and becomes sticky take a warm washcloth and wipe it off and dry your face

Last step is to apply a oil-free moisturizer to your face and enjoy how soft and pretty it is!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Blessings

Well after 2 days of traveling we made it to our destination, Henderson! We got into our apartment for... get this... $425!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Impossible you say, well my friends, it is not! It's a little thing called perfect credit and a 13 month lease! Our place is so cute too! I have a HUGE bathtub and tile floors! I have my own kitchen and we have colors picked out for our rooms! As I was trying on one of my new potholders Colin said "now you aren't just playing house, you are living house!" and it is so true, and so much fun! We also got our very first Christmas tree, he is so cute! Only a little bit taller than me :) We put lights and Colin's ornaments on him. It feels like home now! At first it kind of felt like just a hotel, but once we started putting all of our stuff in here it became home. Especially when we got the couch! I can't wait to be able to do more with it!

My other favorite thing about this place are the options of food places! So many things to choose from, it will take so long to get through them all! We went to this neat little English cafe type thing, our waiter even had an english accent! There are also malls all around me, the best one is this outlet mall we found! It has so many stores in there with really great prices, if you come visit me, we will go there, promise!

Church was AMAZING. Our ward is so awesome and so welcoming! The Bishop even plays in a rock band. Yeah that's right! I signed us up for Choir on the first Sunday, much to Colin's dismay but he will get over it :P The choir director called us "golden choir members" since we asked her and she didn't have to beg us to come. Apparently the choir has been praying for more voices to be added to it, and then we showed up. Just goes to show you how amazing prayer is, it has no limits, it reached us in Alaska and in Washington. It worked out really well though because it turns out the Choir director is a... Voice Teacher!!! Another answer to prayers! I wanted one of those and that is what I want to do for a living! We talked and she is very excited to get started with me! We will do the normal voice lesson stuff, but she will also teach me how to teach it so it's like an added bonus! I am so excited to get started on that!


We have been so blessed in so many ways this year. It hasn't always been easy, but we have been richly rewarded for the tough times. I look forward to building our life together here in Henderson. I know that this is where I am meant to be right now, and I hope Heavenly Father has a lot of work for us to do here so we can stay for a long long time!

"Everything will be ok in the end, if it's not ok, it's not the end" This quote has proved time and time again, and these blessings are proof.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Scarywood!!

So, this night was too crazily awesomely terrifying not to blog about! So many details, it couldn't just fit into one facebook status, I mean lets be real here! Now to help you all understand what a BIG deal this was for me, I'll let you in a few little secrets about me. 1. I'm TERRIFIED of heights 2. I am a SUPER jumpy person, Colin will walk into the room and I will jump and 3. I absolutely, completely, undeniably HATE clowns, I'm downright terrified of them!  So I find myself in a theme park full of scary looking monsters, zombies and worst of all....... CLOWNS!!!!!!!!!! Things jump out at you, or just walk right up to you and get in your face, roller coasters at night that go underground and backwards (for my first time might I add) Yeah, you know I LOVED that! Let's break the events of the night down, go one at a time so you get the full effect!

Blood Bayou!: So while standing in line for this attraction we actually almost left! Although the forecast called for a 20% chance of rain we got pounded with rain in the middle of a thunderstorm... in October no less... But it eventually stopped (right in time I might add) and we were able to enjoy ourselves a little more, even though we were soaked. So first creepy thing to happen to me actually turned out to be really fun and my favorite part of the night. This one guy, I don't know what kind of creep he was, but he was dressed in a top hat and a suit and had this CRAZY mask on, it looked like a face, but a very emotionless face. It had holes for the eyes and mouth and the chin on the mask was made so that a person could talk and it would move, but he didn't talk. He enjoyed walking up to people and just staring at them. So he is going down the line of people and he stops at me, of course, and gets right in my face and stares. Keep in mind this guy is TALL and it was just pouring rain, so my friend Crystal said "well that's not very nice, your top hat is dripping water on her!" So he took his top hat off and resumed his former stance. He then decided to do the same thing on the other side of me. Then suddenly, he backs off and he wants to play charades. He points at me and then takes a dancing pose and starts dancing. I kindly tell him that I don't dance (a lie of course) but compliment him on his dancing skills. He holds out his hand to me and I think "oh what the heck, why not!" and take it. And yes, he started dancing with me. And yes, it was VERY VERY fun! He was a nice monster/creeper guy! He moved on down the line and we were stuck being bored (minus the lightning show in the distance) in line for another 45 min to an hour. Once we got closer to the entrance to the haunted house, I started getting completely freaked out. Colin had to all but pull me into the place, and we still had to stand in line to get to the real thing. As soon as we walked through the door things started jumping out at us and I started screaming my head off. Colin of course was laughing the entire time. I was so scared I literally was about to puke and/or pass out. So at the end of it Colin was standing behind me basically holding me up and pushing me through till the end because I turned off. Seriously. No emotion on my face nothing. I went into a coma like state.  I felt sick for a good 30-40 minutes afterward. It was awful..... but I enjoyed it, kind of..... Especially the part when the totally harmless fake shrubbery scared Colin ;). As much as I didn't/did like the whole experience I may or may not want to do something like that again. Maybe it was so bad because it was my first time EVER being in a haunted house.... I dunno, you tell me!
Clowntown: After leaving the Haunted House we started towards the roller coasters, but to get there, to my horror, we had to go through Clowntown. Strobe lights, fog, and clowns everywhere... dead and alive. The flipping entrance to this place had 3 rows of clowns with 3 clowns per row HANGING. They were dolls of course, but I was scared none the less (remember in the beginning where I told you all how I feel about clowns?? Yeah, I hate those stupid things dolls or not) So Colin took my hand, Carly grabbed my arm and I put my head down and watched my feet while they lead me through because I was WAY too wimpy to try and get through that (I kind of understand how Scooby Doo and Shaggy feel whenever they run into ghosts... it is absolutely terrifying...). Every once in a while I'd catch a glimpse of on of the hanging dolls feet and one clown guy even got in my face and said "Welcome to Clowntown". If I had control of my arms I probably would've punched him due to reflexes.... luckily I had Colin and Carly holding me down and after being so traumatized in the Haunted house I couldn't really make sudden movements without feeling dizzy and sick.. We made it through, barely....

(Side note: I had nightmares about clowns all last night. It was horrible. My first thought waking up this morning was "Why did God allow men to create the idea of clowns... there is no use for them in the world. They need to just disappear"  And upon further consideration I had a very profound thought. You know how in the Bible they call Lucifer "The Great Serpent"? Well that should have been different. He should be called "The Great Clown" because clowns are far more terrifying and deceitful than snakes. They have a smile on their face and they wear bright happy colors, but really they are terrible things that will kill you. If I had to choose what I am more afraid of, clowns vs. snakes, clowns would win EVERY time.)

Tremors: Roller Coaster of Death and Terror is what it should have been called! Colin, wisely, forgot to mention that this roller coaster takes you underground.... yeah... I didn't like that. Now again, let me remind you that this is my first time ever on a roller coaster. My first time ever was at NIGHT. Pitch black night. After being traumatized by zombies and monsters and clowns beforehand. By this time I know I must have completely gone maniacal because I was about to get on a roller coaster that would climb to 100 ft and then drop 103 ft into an underground tunnel... And I am afraid of heights.... Needless to say, I did have fun (after a truly terrifying haunted house and clowns anything was better) and our picture turned out AWESOME! If they had gotten it at the right angle you could have seen my tonsils!

Timber Terror: Well if one roller coaster wasn't enough lets just add another! Going backwards! This drop was only 85 ft, so not as bad. I really liked this one, It was fun, but surprisingly I screamed a lot more on it. I felt completely weightless the whole time and I didn't know what to expect because we were going backwards. I felt like I was falling straight down back first! I think I liked this one the best and it was less scary because I was so numbed by everything else haha! Colin even thought that one was scarier! 

So lets recap:
1. I danced with a very charming masked man in a top hat.
2. I was scared senseless in a haunted house
3. I barely survived Clowntown
4. I went on 2 Roller Coasters, at night, for the first time, one backwards and I'm scared of heights.

And I lived to tell the tale!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Juneau and TEMSCO

So, yesterday was my last day at TEMSCO. I gotta say, loading my last helicopter was pretty sad (even it was a helicopter that was a pain in the butt...) I met people from all over the world and made some new life long friends. The job had it's hard moments, but what job doesn't? All in all I loved it! How many people can say 
"oh well I work with helicopters, you know, help load people in them, fuel them while the helicopter is RUNNING, and get to feel the wind in my hair when they land and take off"
(I am REALLY going to miss that).
But one day, hopefully, I can do all that again!
I met the best people from so many different places and had the best roommates that I could have asked for.

Enough about TEMSCO.. 

There's new snow on the mountains here, and there is NOTHING more beautiful than a clear sky with a sunset over the newly snow capped mountains... NOTHING. Ok maybe if you can see a glacier under those snow capped mountains :) I think what I will miss most about Juneau are the glaciers. Seriously, I went up to the glacier 4 times this year and every. single. time I was SO excited to go I was bouncing off the walls. I was more excited to go than the people who paid for it and were going for the first time.! That is REALLY excited in case you didn't know.... Hopefully today after church (YES I finally get to go back!!!!) we will go by the glacier. And I will be back, hopefully often to my beautiful Juneau and back on my Mendenhall Glacier (Yes I claim both of them!) As much as I love the desert and appreciate the beauty of it, I am going to miss all the green and the trees, and the snow, and glaciers, and fish, and water... Get it yet? :) I'm REALLY going to miss this place and the people that I am leaving behind.


Juneau won't just hold memories of work and beauty for me. It was such a growing experience personally for me, and for Colin and it helped us grow as a couple. When we got here we literally had each other to lean on and no one else but Heavenly Father. We had to depend on each other completely. We were also able to do some really neat things together, glacier exploring, helicopter rides (with him piloting of course), dog sledding, whale watching, 10 hour boat ride to Tracy arm (beautiful and SO worth it, if any of you ever come to Juneau, DO IT!). All in all it made the first 6 months of our marriage absolutely amazing. And even though we didn't always get to spend a lot of time together it made us appreciate the time we had and take advantage of every moment we had. But boy are we looking forward to sleeping on a real bed again...

I love Juneau, I love TEMSCO, and most of all, I love my Colin.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Vegas Bound!!!!!

So earlier this week I was working, you know normal day, loading people in helicopters, watching the same movie I see over and over 50 BAGILLION times a day, that is until Colin came out into the lobby and asked me to come to the with him. Confused I did and he ushered me into the hangar. He stands there in front of me and said "My training at Maverick starts in December" I was so shocked I didn't quite know what to say. We weren't expecting an answer until, oh I don't know, never... ok maybe never but it was still a lot sooner than expected! So now here is the plan!
Ready!?
We fly out of Juneau the morning of Sept. 29th, we will be in Seattle by late morning, early afternoon and will rent a car. Colin will then take me around Seattle (first stop I'm assuming will be Ivers, just like last time we flew into Washington together haha) until we can head over to some family friends of his who are kindly letting us stay with them for a few days while we explore all Seattle has to share! Then we will drive from Seattle to the Tri-Cities area and go see my AMAZING in-laws and get settled into Colin's grandma's house which we will be house-sitting until we have to leave to go to VEGAS!!! Colin will go through about 3 weeks of training (that of course Colin will not be paid for) But after the three weeks is over he will be making some good money : D!  After 90 days of working there we will get... wait for it... wait for it.... BENEFITS!!!!! Finally!
We plan on renting for a year, saving up money and buying a house (you know since prices are CHEAP and sometimes you can end up paying less on mortgage than you can on rent!) All in all we are extremely excited! This is going to be a huge step up for us!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Lizard-Happiness

A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person. -Mingon McLaughlin

You make me understand how wonderful it is for little lizards when they find that one special rock that's perfect for sunning themselves on. You make me lizard-happy. -Randy Milholland

These two quotes summarize how I feel about being married. Every single day I fall in love with Colin more and more and he makes me as happy as a lizard sun bathing on the perfect rock. When things are tough he is always ready with a hug and a cuddle and of course plenty of forehead kisses. Every time he looks at me I can see how much he loves me. After we argue or disagree he always reminds me that he loves me. He loves it when I fall asleep in his arms. He is my best friend. I always try to have a hug and a kiss and dinner ready when he gets home from work and I never let him forget how much I love him and how much I appreciate him.

I realize that life won't always be this easy and that we will have our rough spots, but those won't ever make me stop loving him. My goal is to become that cute old married couple that has been together for 50+ years that still hold hands, kiss, and look at each other like they are just as in love as they were when they got married those 50+ years ago. I'm sure we will be and even at 50+ years he will still make me "lizard-happy"!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Dog Sledding and Fishing in the Ocean?! Yeah, I love my life!

So yesterday both Colin and I had the day off and we decided to go dog sledding. Luckily for us the weather was absolutely phenomenal and there were plenty of open spots we could get on. So we get to Temsco and go through all the motions, safety briefing, life vests, boots, dividing in to helicopters, and last but not least getting IN the helicopter! Since we were going for free (although I don't consider it free... I do have to put up with a lot of crap from tourists, I earned that tour haha) we got middle seats but the view was still incredible. Thanks to the lovely cloudless day (a rare thing here in July) our pilot was able to fly us up higher than normal so we could get the most spectacular view of the Juneau Ice Field. There were mountains and snow and ice for as far as you could see. I could even see the mountain that formed the division line between Canada and the U.S!
Juneau Ice Field at it's finest!
Now you all need to remember that ever since the movie "Balto" came out in 1995 (I was 4) it has been my dream to go dog sledding! So when we rounded the bend to see the dog camp I was ecstatic! It was finally all real to me! I was in Alaska, in a helicopter taking me to a glacier where I would be dog sledding with dogs and mushers who had participated and were training for the Iditarod. Yeah, how many people my age get to do that?! (The advantage of marrying someone 8 years older than you who already has a career ;-) )

Dog Camp!   

We landed, they unloaded us and we learned a little more about how the dog camp works (which I already knew most of it since, well you know, I work with them) So below will be a few pictures of the adventure.
Me and the Hubby on the sled!
The Howler lol. This dog howled and howled and howled because he wanted to pull the sled.
Is it just me or does this dog look a lot like a Yellow Lab?! Gotta love Alaskan Huskies the "Designer Dogs"
Getting mauled by Piper. Lead Dog Trainee and of course goofy Electra the Lead Dog Trainer makes the picture!
I should quit my day job and become a Musher. I think I could pull it off :)

video


 The above is a video of the dogs pulling the sled. I don't know why the color was so bad, but you get the idea!

And the not so talented but oh so sweet Goblin. He isn't really sled dog material, his build is all wrong for it. Our musher said he will keep working with him, but it's not promising. He was such a sweet boy though. I wish I could have him as a pet!


 So that was the Dog Sledding part. Now for the next one, Ocean Fishing! WOOHOO!! So when we got home our roommates were all going to go with one of the other pilots to the "beach" (a beach in AK is rocks... really, but its still fun!) and they invited us to come along so we agreed. We got into our beachy gear and Colin at the last minute decided to take his fishing rod. Smart move! So we all pile into a mini van and head on our way. We finally find a good place to stop and Colin and I started scoping out places to fish. Unfortunately the best one was on this point and there was already someone fishing there. So we settle with something just to try out the waters (hehehe). First cast, he gets a bite! And not at low tide either! Things were looking good. The fish were jumping like crazy out there, but just too far away to cast to. We moved about 5-6 times until finally the people on the point moved a little ways and we could go fish out there too. Cast after cast there was nothing until!!!!!! Oh.... Just seaweed... well that is just fantastic. But then..... a real bite! He reeled it in and it was this little dinky baby salmon... so Colin unhooks the little guy and lets him go. More casts go by and still nothing. I'm watching Colin and next thing you know the line was being tugged and I thought to myself, oh its just more seaweed until I saw this big fish jump and the line moved with it! Oh my goodness he had something! It was quite the fight, the rod was bending pretty good! But of course, my man wasn't about to let the fish have the win. And that my friends, was Colin's first salmon! After fighting to get the hook out and much deliberation we decided it was not a King Salmon and that we could keep it (Dinner is gonna be GOOD tonight!) After the big catch we sat around with our friends and made fun of each other, ate chips and took lots and lots of pictures (most of which are candid pictures by Katy...). When we got home we looked up what kind of salmon it was and we learned that it was a Pink Salmon. Now, for some Salmon knowledge. There are 5 kinds of Salmon you can catch in AK which is handy because there is a trick to remember them using the 5 fingers on your hand. You ready? I will quiz you later so pay attention.
Thumb: Chum Salmon (I don't remember the reasoning behind it, but it had something to do with the fact that it was used as bait for other salmon or something like that).
Pointer Finger: Sockeye Salmon (you can sock somebody's eye out).
Middle Finger: King Salmon (Its the biggest fish and the middle finger is the biggest finger).
Ring Finger: Silver Salmon (You wear silver rings on your ring finger).
Pinkie: Pink Salmon (if you can't figure out that one... well... I won't go there...)

There you have it! And when I said I'd quiz you. I mean it!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Yes I know, I broke my promise.

But in my defense, the old computer just flat out died on us and we had to buy a new one. We have had this one for, oh I don't know.... a week or so, but I've just been too tired to blog.

Probably the most exciting thing that has happened was our whale watching tour. We saw some humpbacks and some sea lions! First we came across 3 humpbacks together which is apparently not common. It was a mom, her baby and her "escort". The escort pretty much just helps the mom get food for herself and the baby, but isn't the father of the baby. Weird system... But whatever makes them happy! The baby was SOOO cute to watch. It was pretty close to the boat and was just playing around at the surface. Rolling around like crazy! The Sea Lions were an absolute crack up. They made the funniest noises and some of them were as interested in us as we were of them. There were these 3 big fat ones, 2 of them were beating up the little guys and one was just sitting on the rock with his head tilted back sleeping. (There is a picture of him on Facebook, I suggest you take a look because it's really funny!)

So, for the funny story of the evening (and when I say evening I mean it happened THIS evening, as I was typing!) I present!!!!!:

The Roommates Vs. The Wood Spider!

Here I am blogging and putting pictures up on facebook when I hear my roommates Katy and Jescy gasp and start shaking some sort of linen object. I look up to see whats going on and they are shaking Jescy's vest and are talking about the huge wood spider they just saw on it. Of course, us being girls start squealing and asking Colin to kill it. He gets up to get a paper towel and Jescy in her infinite wisdom decides to keep shaking the jacket. Katy tells her she will lose it if she keeps going and sure enough, when Colin comes back its missing. Of course we have to have carpet THE SAME COLOR as the flipping spider so here we are, Katy crouching on the bean bag chair, Jescy and Colin standing up and me on the couch with my feet up scanning the carpet looking for a moving brown object. No luck. Of course Colin has to throw in a joke and says "It's probably headed towards Katy" to freak her out. We start trying to figure out where it has gone and just keep freaking ourselves out. Jescy needed to move something across the room so she walks VERY slowly across the floor watching her every step and the one she doesn't she of course feels like she stepped on it so we all get excited all over again. Over what? A pine needle of some sort... Yeah.. I know. So we still can't find the spider. Spider: 1, Roommates: 0

Luckily for you all, I have 3 days off this week AND a working computer so there will be more adventures to read!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Sick Day and Internet Connections

So, I'm bored... hence the post! So are you all ready to hear about my oh so exciting day? Hold on to your hat folks because here it comes! [|:-) <-- Yes... that is a smiley face wearing a hat, don't judge me...--

So I wake up this morning feeling yucky, but since I had to be in by 7 there was no way I could call in sick. I dragged my butt out of bed and proceeded to get ready. I figured that I just needed to wake up and get some fresh air. So off on my purple mountain bike I went. (Btw, I ride with one of the girls living with us because we are good at motivating each other) By the time I got to work I wasn't feeling any better, in fact it was worse but that was only the start. I went to look at our board (the board we write the schedule on and a lot of other things you wouldn't understand.) and almost had a heart attack when I saw it. My tour was BOOKED completely... Wonderful... so now I feel like crap and will be crazy busy all day. Luckily for me, my wonderful coworker Brandi wanted hours and only had one helicopter to load all day and I wanted to go home so we were able to switch shifts and after about 2 hours I was able to leave. WOOHOO!! The fact that I knew rest was on its way made me feel a little better, well, better enough to ride my purple mountain bike to the bus stop.

My bike has requested to remain anonymous, so alas, this bike is only a paid actress... Sorry for any inconvenience or disappointment this may have caused!













When I got home I got so lucky, I was able to turn on Colin's computer. (Yes, it really is a challenge. Don't ask me to explain, because it's beyond me today to try and put the problem into coherent explanation.) As I am minding my own business, watching stuff on Netflix when all the sudden the internet stopped working. I tried everything my tired mind could think to do. I went and checked with my roommate, Katy, and she was having internet problems too. After turning off the pain in the butt computer and some phone calls I figured out the problem... The internet jack in the wireless router that connects the router to the modem doesn't hold the plug in tight. So I taped them together and tried to turn on the computer again... no luck. So I give the computer some time to cool down and use my Ipod to watch Netflix on. But since I was already having so much luck today (or lack of it..) my Ipod decides to act up. I could watch about 30 minutes of my show and then it would go back to my main screen on my Ipod, quite frustrating. So after 2 or 3 times of that happening I try to turn on the computer again and voila! It worked! But my joy was short lived.. The internet on the computer, not working. Thats right, you read it. No. Internet. Connection! BUT it was working on my Ipod so it was time to turn on my computer detective mode! I went into the network connections and somehow the internet connection had been disabled... I didn't do it! So I figure that all I had to do was re-enable it. Yeah... no... didn't work. So now what?! I had a thought, and it seemed crazy but I decided to try it anyways. I switched the Ethernet cord from jack 1 in the router to jack 4, then tried the internet again, and it worked! Technology is a pain.

And now, two videos that are bound to please!













That is all!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Well, to sum up...

It's been a month (I know, it's awful) since I've been able to post... I was honestly starting to go through blogging withdrawal! So, let me sum up what has happened....

Colin joined me in Juneau the night after I got in! We are now living in an apartment with 2 co-workers who are awesome and we only pay $700 a month for rent! We are still sleeping on an air mattress, and that probably won't change until we are in a more permanent location (aka not Juneau), though once we have started our family and are a little more stable with the finances we are DEFINITELY moving back to Alaska because lets face it, Alaska is the most awesome place EVER.

I LOVE MY JOB! I meet people from all over the world and I send them to one of the most amazing things on the planet, a glacier, by helicopter. How much better could it get! Things I've learned you ask? 1.Well, I can now hot fuel a helicopter, which is fueling a helicopter while the blades are turning, I must say I look pretty epic!
2. Women from Thailand think that the sanitary napkin box is a trash can for all of their used toilet paper and seat covers (gross I know, but hey! You never know when you may need that kind of information!)
3. Colin McDaniel is the best husband EVER!!!
4: The reason there is blue ice on the glacier is because the ice is so condensed that the blue rays can't soak into it and instead bounce back giving it the extremely blue appearance.

Now for some exciting stories!

First day off we had while living in the apartment me and my other roommate, Katy, went and explored the public transportation in Juneau. We first walked to Wells Fargo to get some quarters since we were pretty much clueless on how the bus system worked and didn't know if they took dollar bills or nickels or dimes and such. After getting a roll of quarters each we set out towards the post office. I knew where it was, but I didn't know exactly which bus stop we wanted to get off at. So here we are riding a long and we pass the turn we would need to take to get to said post office.... now what?! So we got off at the next stop possible and walked about a mile to the post office. Then we headed to safeway where we could have access to internet to look up the bus schedule and see if there was a closer bus stop that would take us back home. We didn't see anything so in frustration we decided it was time for something sweet from the bakery. After filling our tummies with yummy desserts we decided it would be best to call the bus main office and ask them. Sure enough there was much closer, but how to get there and in ten minutes... we had no clue. So as we walk out trying to figure out directions a cute little old lady stopped us and asked us where we needed directions to. We told her and she started giving us directions, but to the wrong place! She realized this and quickly started giving us directions to the right spot. We asked her if we could make it there in 10 minutes and she said "oh, you can make it there in 5!" Katy kindly pointed out that we were walking and she offered us a ride there. Since there were two of us and she seemed totally harmless we decided to accept. We felt even safer when we saw the beanie baby pugs in the back of her car and the pug seat covers. We made it to the bus stop, and were able to get home thanks to the pug lady.

In one day (the day the Thai groups were in) I got enough pictures taken of me to fill 2 or 3 photo albums! I am probably going to be famous in Thailand, well at least the facebook part of it! I also got offered a discount at a SWEET hotel right on the beach by the owner of the hotel who just happened to be in my group. He was one of the few people I encountered that morning that spoke any english. The interpreters were an absolute crack up! They thought it was the funniest thing when I tried to pronounce their names and would laugh and laugh and then give me a big hug. One even told me I sounded like an American.... no, really?! Next day I had a group come in that had been told by the vendor that sold them their tour that they would be going on the dog sledding tour, sadly this was not what he sold them. He sold them the Mendenhall Tour (which is roughly $300 less than dog sledding...) They were so disappointed! I felt so bad for them! BUT back to the main story... One of the lady's was wearing this amazing panda hat. You know a white hat with cute little black ears on it and a panda face on the front. I told her that I thought it was just adorable and this was our conversation:
Panda Hat Lady (PHL): When I get back down from the glacier I will give it to you.
Me: Oh no, I couldn't take your hat!
PHL: No, I want you to have it.
(not wanting to argue) Me: Ok
So I figured she would forget about it after being on that awesome glacier and helicopter ride and to make sure I didn't make her remember the conversation I hid in the back. My coworker, Jay, had known what I was doing and I was surprised when he walked into the hanger laughing and telling me that the panda hat lady asked to see me... my response: If you are joking with me, you are in SO much trouble. He wasn't. I go out there and meet her and she hands it to me and says "A lot of people have told me how much they love my hat, but I think you deserve to have it." She hugs me and gives me that hat. How could you say no to that?! You can't.
This isn't the EXACT hat... but you get the point :)
 Now for the best story.....
Once upon a time, there was a young lady who worked as a TEMSCO employee. One day she came into work only to be told that she wasn't assigned an aircraft for the day. She was asked to wait and double check with the manager when she came in. So after waiting for 45 minutes or so she was finally told that she was to cover someones aircraft while they went on a tour! She reluctantly said ok and proceeded to cover the shift, but of course she complained to her prince charming (who also happened to be a pilot at the same company) about how upset she was. He, being the awesome prince charming he is, went and talked to his manager and was secretly setting up a tour for her. After it was all set up he came and told her that she would be able to go up on the Mendenhall Glacier and that HE would be her pilot! Her dream come true! Once her shift was over she hurried home to change out of her capri's and relax for a little while before the tour. She took a nap and set her alarm clock for 3pm giving her enough time to change, fix her hair and be out the door to the bus by 3:32. She napped for about an hour, then woke up and decided that she should just get ready and head over there earlier. As soon as she was ready she received a phone call from her prince telling her that he was on his way to pick her up since she had been moved to an earlier flight! "Good thing I got ready earlier" she thought to herself. She watched out the window as her handsome prince pulled up in a maroon mini van to pick her up. When she got to the base she was given the full tourist treatment. Her stylish glacier boots were put on her, she was put into a group and assigned a seat by the tour attendant and last but not least loaded into the shiny helicopter and had her seat belt put on for her. She watched as her handsome prince started to take off in the helicopter and through the flight had a hard time keeping her eyes off him even though there was some amazing scenery all around her (don't worry though, she got lots of pictures and saw a lot of stuff even if she was distracted). He announced to the passengers that the woman in the back seat at the far left was his wife and that it was her first time ever flying with him so it was a special flight for both of them (everyone looked a lot more comfortable after that). After expertly landing on the glacier one of her good friends unloaded her out of the helicopter and she walked over with the others to the glacier guides. After seeing a few spots with the other tourists she was taken on a private tour of the glacier and saw an amazing ice cave. She drank the glacier water which was the purest water she ever tasted (forget the fountain of youth... it should be called the glacier river of youth!) Then she watched as her prince landed the helicopter on the ice and she was again loaded into the helicopter and she began her trip back to the heliport. After landing back at the heliport she was unloaded and greeted by her coworkers with whom she shared pictures and told them how amazing it was and how they needed to go up there too! To complete her tourist experience she even had one of the coworkers take her picture with the big stuffed bear they had in the base. She waited for her prince to finish up the day at work and then headed home on the bus to relax together. The End.

So this is all I can remember right now.... It's hard to come up with a months worth of stuff in 24 hours.... But I vow never to get this behind on my blog again!