Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sick & Tired

This is a phrase that often comes via text to Shane from me. "I am so sick and tired of ______." Truth be told, I am not a very patient person and sometimes life gets the best of me.

Today is a literal sick and tired day. Yesterday we went to my mother-in-laws family Christmas party and on the way I was feeling a bit of head congestion... needless to say last night was hard for me to sleep and today has been an achy day. I'm considering going in for a throat swab tomorrow, we'll see.

As many of us are facebook friends, it has become known news that Samuel has been awful at sleeping for the last 6 weeks. I am up too many times a night... usually 5 or more, and at least one of those times my little guy doesn't want to go back to sleep, so we're up 1-3 hrs. It is brutal. I know this sounds like a poor me post, and if you feel that way, please stop reading and go on doing something else with your day. If you'd like to sympathize with me, please keep reading.

I think back to a year ago when we found out we were pregnant. I was excited, scared, SURPRISED, and oh so sick. At 8 weeks I thought I was miscarrying and told Shane that it would be a long time before I would go through the sickness again if that were the case. I got to the point where I was just excited and sick, and ready to share our surprise. Christmas eve found the beginning of one of my hardest trials. I kept working through the sickness, barely functioning. February found me in the emergency room yet again thinking I was miscarrying. I kept reminding myself in these times that I was blessed to be pregnant, and that the child I was carrying was my Heavenly Fathers and that he could call that spirit back at any time.

Early spring started looking better, and bigger... lol. We went on a wonderful trip to Mexico and started really looking forward to being parents to our little boy! I finished 2nd trimester, and 3rd came and was a struggle; swelling, heat, throwing up... again, uncomfortable, etc. My calling was very heavy and busy. There were so many days I wondered how I could go on, how I could keep going. I was sleeping on our reclining couch because my acid reflux was so bad I couldn't lay in bed, nor was it comfortable if the acid was under control. I was convinced that our little baby was going to stay in as long as he possibly could and mentally was planning to go over 40 weeks, probably even 41. When my water broke on my 38 week mark, I was stunned, excited, and relieved. I was ready to have comfort again.

Samuel was so wonderful, but not so much at nursing. For days and days my midwives would come over and work on latch, etc. 2 weeks after giving birth I was diagnosed with breast thrush, 3 weeks after giving birth, mastitis. I had thrush up until about a week ago, with many many plugged ducts, and even a second round of mastitis. I heard so many different things from different people. "Give it up Mindy, formula is fine for your baby." "Keep nursing, you don't want to give up on your child. He's worth it." Deep down I wanted to nurse with everything that I was. I went to so many different "specialists" to try and get rid of the yeast. I did a 2 week cleanse, and let me just shine some light on the fact that EVERYTHING has sugar in it. I keep going. I knew eventually my body would figure itself out.

Naturally this isn't the end of our problems. 7 weeks ago Samuel would wake up maybe twice a night. He would sleep 6-7 hrs for his first stretch. I thought for sure we were headed for sleeping through the night. So many girls in my prenatal class had babies sleeping 12 hrs straight a night. Not so much us.

The other day I heard the song "Little Wonders" by Rob Thomas. I couldn't help but hold back the tears at my little wonder. He can be a handful and frustrating in the middle of the night, but he is my little blessing. He is such a miracle and blessing in my life. I completely feel that the pain I went through to nurse is worth it. I love the bond we have. I know the sleeping issues will pass. He is my little wonder, and no matter how long I have to be "sick" of being "tired," I will forever love my little man.

Here's to some more sleep. Only a little over a month until solids and sleep training :)

Saturday, December 17, 2011


I was perusing through my posts from last year to link back our wreath from last year (how do I do this with the new blogger format p.s.?). I used to blog often, people would comment on my blog, and it was fun. I now have a treasured journal of last summer/fall and love it.

Last December came and I was newly pregnant, sick as sick can be, and had my feelings hurt. January rolled around and I was down from a comment that was made, so down that I stopped living, which resulted in my stopping blogging. I had all of the time in the world as a "stay at home wife", but I couldn't take it anymore! I couldn't put my life in the public eye. I was too concerned about what other people thought and hurt by what others felt/ said to take pride in myself. I spent the majority of my pregnancy upset and down. I had very low self esteem and would often cry over one incident that I kept replaying in my head.

We fast-forward to today, I have taken charge and made it so I can feel free and not worry about hurting people, or what people think. If you don't like what I have to say/ write about, don't read my blog. Simple as that, because the truth is... I kinda like blogging... and I kinda plan to be back on the bandwagon and do it a lot :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas Door

Last year we had this same wreath. I tied a velvet red ribbon onto the bottom of it and slapped it on our front door.
This year I felt our wreath needed a bit of a face lift. I was browsing the aisles of walmart killing some time and came across some berries. I bought them, but didn't have a vision quite yet. I am one of those people who just has to sit down and start creating, then my juices flow. I was pretty pleased when I finished this puppy. Our office wasn't even put together yet; therefore, I did indeed sit on the floor with my hot glue gun plugged in and created.
I kinda like the way I work, don't plan, just do. The crafty part of my life is the one area I can apply this principle of no planning. Naturally I hung my wreath before American Thanksgiving because I live in Canada and can do things like that.... BUT, I didn't snap a picture for nearly a month... sue me!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Candies

Hi, my name is Mindy, and I have an addiction to buying brightly coloured tins. Honestly I would have bought the entire aisle of them if I could. I love the memories that come with what will fill my beautiful tins. Last year I used some old cookie and chocolate tins and covered them in wrapping paper. This year, I saved myself the hassle (not to mention my collection is down to about 1).

I've been melting and stirring away, making Christmas candies. My grandma Elaine always had the best Christmas candies that she had made at her house every year. I loved when she taught me how to make them. This year for the first time I have made some of the yummies myself. I had my grandma email me her recipes and unknown to me, she got them from her mom who happened to attend a candy making school and made the most decadent Christmas chocolates, etc. I LOVE learning things like this, and LOVE that my Christmas recipes all have a story behind them. How fun is that!? Anyways, I am looking forward to filling my lovely tins and gifting them to friends and family.

The best part about living in Canada... Our chocolate is AMAZING! Thank you Bernard for making my butter toffee perfect with your chocolate melted on top. You better bet I've already promised my grandma to mail her some of this stuff for her candies next year. Yep... it's marked on my calendar to remind me already.

I can't wait for next weeks adventure of making chocolates with my sister-in-law and her mom and sisters.


A fun part of where we stayed was they had a pamphlet with all of the activities offered ever day. One of the days was a free picture with Santa. We figured it being Samuel's first Christmas we needed to hit up a picture with the magic man. Unfortunately it happened to be time for little mans morning nap and he fell asleep on the way. It was freezing in the "Santa Cabin" and since Sam had just woke up, we left him in his snowsuit.

Samuel has been a really good boy and asked Santa for some books and a bumbo. We'll see what Santa brings this year.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Little Chubby Thighs

We had a holiday weekend away with Shane's family this last week. We went up to Fairmont and stayed in a condo. It was nice to kick back, relax, and have access to the Rec Centre (which happened to have a swimming pool). One of the funnest parts of the weekend was taking our little guy swimming for the first time

Honestly, I can't get enough of those chubby thighs!

Mom and Sam... not so sure about the water, it was a bit chilly for him

So we decided to dip his legs in the hot tub. Here he is, thumb sucking, zonked on grandpa.

It was a lot of fun. I look forward to more swimming adventures with Samuel, and yes, he'll be in swimming lessons as soon as he can... naturally, his aunt is a lifeguard and swim instructor.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Sleeping Like A Baby

Is not necessarily my favourite saying anymore. If you sleep like our baby, you are up A LOT and your mom starts to go nuts! Honestly, we're talking mental people. I cry, get angry, and lose all sense of reality.
I try to not carry on about lack of sleep, breastfeeding, how we parent, etc, but seriously, I have to have an outlet on this one. Samuel about 6 weeks ago used to maybe wake up twice a night. He would go down, wake up around 5, again around 7, and then up for the day around 9. He would be up for about 2 hours, and then back down for a morning nap that was at least an hour and a half. He never was really "awake." Well, he was awake enough to stir and grunt and let me know he was hungry. He would nurse, and back to sleep.
Fast forward to now. For the past 6 weeks he has been up I swear more than when he was a newborn. I am convinced of this, actually. His longest stretch of sleep is now 3 hrs, the a 2 hr stretch, and then hourly from about 2 to 6am, then again asleep for 2 hours. He cries when he wakes up now, and at least once, if not twice a night I have to work to get him back to sleep, or lay him down and let him talk himself to sleep (he's not crying). It is absolutely exhausting! His naps do not come as easy now, he goes to sleep MUCH earlier than he used to (which means he's generally up before I even get to bed for the night).
I look back. I used to think people were just weak when they used to complain about their kids and their patterns. I have eaten an entire humble pie, maybe 2 or 3. Seriously, when you aren't a parent you are convinced that it's not THAT hard, that people just parent differently, or have unrealistic expectations. I decided during my pregnancy that I was going to write a book with one of my friends title "The Truth About Pregnancy and Childbirth." We could write a series, honestly. I have since then rethought that. I wouldn't have believed a book that said I would be so sick, in so much pain, in labour so long, that breastfeeding would be hard, that I would cry for 2 weeks straight, that my child wouldn't sleep, etc. I didn't believe what anyone told me about anything. I am now learning... BELIEVE MINDY, BELIEVE!
Here's to some nights of more peaceful sleep... maybe when he starts solids in 6 weeks?????

Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Party Numero Uno

Sam went to his first Christmas party ever, and it was for him! Shane's company puts on a kids party at the bowling alley every year. We were a bit excited when Samuel got an invitation in the mail since he was the youngest one there.

Shane's got some sweet bowling moves

Sam fell asleep at the beginning of the party and slept the entire time

Family Photo

The ornaments mom, I mean I made

Presents from Santa!

SWEET! Pigs by Robert Munsch, just what I asked for

Yeah! Stacking blocks.

Mom, you read me this, please?

All in all we are happy to have Sam as part of our family, and grateful Shane works for such a wonderful company.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

O Christmas Tree

Yesterday we went on our Christmas tree tradition. Because my inlaws have so much land surrounding their house, all growing up Shane's family would head up the big hill behind their house, find the "perfect" tree and bring it home. This has been something that has carried over into our life and we've had a real tree every year from the farm since.

Here is a little documentation of getting and bringing home our tree. I think it is the most perfect, beautiful looking Christmas tree (even if I think it stinks).
Snowmobiling up to find our tree
This is the one
Posing with our beauty
My turn chopping
Shane chopping
Closing the fence behind us, pulling our tree
Our tree in the van
Pretty view of the farm
Daddy and Sam admiring the tree
We love hunting for our perfect tree and this one is beautiful!
Decorating post to come

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Bon Voyage

Don't you wish your passport picture could look this cute?

Samuel and I had quite the adventure running all over downtown getting the documents and paperwork finished to apply for his passport. The parking meter was broken outside the Government Canada building and I was stressed we would get a parking ticket (yes, Calgary is a BIG city and you have to pay to park everywhere). I was relieved that even after a 3 day weekend, we were in and out of the passport office within about 10 minutes.

I was thrilled when a little over a week later we got a notice to pick up a parcel from Canada Post. I was so excited to open the envelope and see our little mans passport. We are Utah bound in a little less than 3 weeks, and having all the right travel documents makes the trip less stressful. Now if only Samuel will cooperate for the trip.

Friday, December 2, 2011

He Rolls

I have had a vision thanks to pinterest of how I want our family Christmas photo/cards to look. I want Samuel all wrapped up in lights and then Shane and I also wrapped up in lights all put together on one of those tacky Wal Mart Christmas photo cards that wishes you a Happy Holidays or something like that. Ok, so they're not tacky, but you get the point.

I was in the middle of taking the pictures of Samuel and it was looking something like this:

Then the next thing you know...

bam, he's on his back!

I kept snapping pictures with my slower than ever camera we got for our wedding 3.5 years ago. Shane exclaimed "he just rolled over!" and like any good mom, I said, "yeah, I know, I need to get a good picture though."

I'm glad I was able to document it, and that he finally rolled from his tummy to his back. He's yet to do it again, but is so close and it's only a matter of time before he'll be a rolling machine.

Needless to say, I think we'll all get dressed up in our fancy church outfits and have a family picture taken that way. This way is a lot of work and I just don't know that Samuel or I have the patience or skill to get the "perfect picture" to be able to send out in our Christmas cards that need to be mailed ASAP so our friends in the states get them before Christmas.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Big Brother

Today is my older brother Jonathan's Birthday. I can't help but compare Samuel to Jonathan because they are both the oldest, both boys, etc. I would always ask my mom questions about when she was pregnant with Jonathan.

A little trivia about Jonathan:

He was 10 days late
Was a honeymoon baby
Was born on a dear friend to our mom's Birthday
Wouldn't take a bottle (woot woot)
Was a chunk
LOVED cowboys growing up
Would ride grandpa on the daddy saddle
Could get anything he wanted out to me
Is so kind
Graduated from B.Y.U
Is working on his MBA
Has an amazing job
Served an honourable mission in Sao Paulo Brazil
Attends the temple regularly
Has a great sense of style
Knows who he is
Won't settle
Hard working


He single :) (just thought I'd throw that one out there).

I love Jonathan so so much! Some of my favourite memories are when we would ride to and from Weber State together 4 out of 5 days a week. He is the best big brother I could ask for.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Personal Challenge

I have decided to give myself a personal challenge... It is to blog daily the entire month of December. It could get a little crazy, but I'm WAY behind on what's going on in our lives and don't keep a paper journal so it's time to catch up. It's going to be fun people, so get pumped!

I challenge you to do the same :)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Daylight Savings

Adjusting to daylight savings can be rough... I'd suggest raiding the cupboard for some cookies to help you cope.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


I feel I have had a lot thrown at me these last couple of months. I realize I have so much to be grateful for and have been trying to switch my focus from "whoa is me," to gratitude. Here are a few things I am so grateful for:

-The quick passing of my mastitis this week, last time I had it I was down and out for a full week!
-Samuel's sweet smile
-Our beautiful home
-Wonderful families
-Kind words from a stranger
-A husband who never stops putting me and my needs first
-A doctor who is going to fight this infection with me until it's gone
-Our beautiful view from where we live
-Having more than one vehicle
-Amazing friends
-How beautiful this fall has been

Today I am feeling uplifted. I did some online retail therapy... I couldn't have come across anything more perfect!

Itunes also equipped me with some new inspirational music:

There isn't an official movie, this song is amazing when you feel hopeless.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I couldn't help but bawl through replying to my naturopath via email. This week has been like being hit by a train every morning. Honestly.
Monday at 4:30 I got chills and couldn't get warm. I was sore and was worried that I was coming down with mastitis... again! Truth have it, I was right and it hit hard. By 10am I was in to see my doctor after bawling my way through the waiting room and being stared at by all others waiting. It was a huge blessing that the infection started to pass without taking any antibiotics since we spent a lot of money on Saturday on remedies to rid my body of the yeast. Shane stayed home with me all day to take care of Samuel. I couldn't even get out of bed.

Tuesday I woke up with the most wicked headache and cried through the morning. Shane came home once again to take care of his wife and little man during lunch. My angel mother in law came for the rest of the afternoon so I could nap. I started feeling a bit better.

Today I woke up and poor little man has thrush in his mouth! I hurt a lot and emotionally am spent! I am on a really restricted diet to get rid of the yeast and spend half the day starving and grouchy.

I am trying my hardest to hold myself together. Please pray for our little family? This mama is learning a brutal lesson in looooooooonnnnnng suffering! literally!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Some Mornings Are Rough!

I've been really sick the last couple of days and this is how the days have been spent. I have an amazing husband, and angel mother in law who have taken care of Samuel and I. I'm feeling better every day.
Here's to a speedy full recovery!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Love It!

So obviously Samuel didn't do this to the books, I tossed them off the Rubbermaids and haven't picked them up.

I am so excited for his room to be like this because he is playing and reading stories. He already loves to read books. We're excited to grow his library. He's already asked Santa for some books (a post coming on that later).

Sunday, October 9, 2011


I am wishing that last night looked a lot more like this.

Both Shane and Samuel have been snoozing for the last couple of hours and I could not be more grateful! I had my share of a nap earlier, and yet again, couldn't be more happy.

Last night was one of the roughest nights in this new mama's life. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving here in Canada and naturally in trying to reduce my stress offered to host Thanksgiving dinner at my new mostly unpacked home... oy, silly choice Mindy!!! Hear me out though, most of the family hasn't seen our new, beautiful home and since they would be headed out to this neck of the woods anyway, would be stopping in for a peek, so why not fling the doors open and shout "welcome to our life, it's not all put together, but full of a lot of love and has awesome potential!"

So, back to where I left off, last night Shane left to his hockey game, Samuel went to sleep, and I was working on getting our pantry all put together. When Shane got home, he helped me haul the heavy boxes to the basement, and then we were headed to bed... it was nearly 1:30 in the AM and Samuel woke up. This is not normal for Samuel as he normally sleeps for a 5-6 hour stretch when he first goes down. I fed Samuel, and we all drifted off to dreamland for a short while until 2 hours later he was up again. I fed him and created my own pool to sit in (I'm breastfeeding, you can figure the rest out). I laid him back down not fully back to sleep and recruited Shane for help.

Finally around 5 back to bed, for Samuel to wake up around 6 wanting to eat again.... AAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh!!!! I fed him and as I was putting him back down realized he was wet, like his pajamas were wet... dang it!!!!! So I grabbed a bum genius (entire post on them to come soon) and a new sleeper and woke up my sleeping baby to change him. Well my sweet baby is a morning person and thought it was time to be up and his smiley, happy self... wrong! I rocked him back to sleep (this stuff takes time if you're not realizing this quite yet) and at 6:30 laid back down... He didn't stay asleep. In desperation I nudged Shane, apologized, and said it was his turn. I slept for an hour before it was time for Shane to get ready to go and Sam to want to eat again.

Needless to say, a bit of stress + not too much sleep = I'm a bit of a wreck.

I'm working it all off by baking beautiful pies and prepping to wake up my snoozing baby, because heaven forbid, I'm not up for another night like the last.

Friday, October 7, 2011

New Door

Now that fall is upon us, I have loved seeing the beauty of the Alberta Foothills as I'm driving from place to place. Our new home is in a cute town and the drive back into the city gives some beautiful scenery! I've officially busted out the fall Scentsy scents, and am happy that this year they don't make me sick! I was really happy when my mother in law brought my wreaths that were being stored at her house until we moved. I love the look of my new front door with a radiant, bright wreath on it.

Take a look...

The wreath I made last year.

This is what it looked like on our front door last year....

And now our brand new front door...

We just jumped about 6 decades as far as the dating of our front door goes.

I am going to be displaying beautiful wreaths ALL year long! Stay tuned each season for the new look of our front door.

P.S. I'm also learning how to edit my photos a little bit. :) Maybe soon Shane will let me make the jump to a DSLR... fingers crossed!!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

a Name and a Blessing

Sunday September 25 Shane gave Samuel Oliver Gallup his name and a blessing. It was beautiful and perfect and our little man looked heavenly. I got a bit choked up dressing him for this special occasion in his life. He looked so celestial and all I could think about was the temple. I'm grateful to know that families can be together forever, and that Samuel is ours forever!

Samuel has the same middle name as his daddy. It comes from his 3rd great grandmothers last name. Samuel was blessed in the slippers that Granny Oliver had a friend make for Shane's baby blessing, which Shane was blessed in 25 years ago. I love passing on traditions and am crossing my fingers that I get a baby girl someday so she can be blessed in my dress.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I Am Slowly Going Crazy.... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, switch!

I am slowly going CRAZY!!!! This is the status of most of my house!

This morning, I can't handle it... I just can't do it!

I spent all yesterday packing and Shane spent all night (until 1:30am) packing. I quickly got Samuel out of bed when he started to rouse and wanted to eat every time last night so we wouldn't disturb Shane. When the 8am feeding came (and I usually beg Shane to take him), I didn't, I got up, fed my baby, and knew there would be a nap time this morning. Oh how I was WRONG! Usually we have our morning smiles and chat time, I feed Sam again, and we both nap for a couple of hours...

This morning, we've both been covered in barf multiple times, he's pretended to go to sleep 3 times. I got a call saying the bank is having computer issues so the lawyers don't have our mortgage documents yet and our possession may be bumped. My time line for this week is so tight it's about to snap and delayed possession will do just that.

As with everything lately, we have a backup plan... Rent a /u-haul Thursday (as the Jayman van has to be back that night), transfer all our stuff. Thank our lucky stars for awesome landlords who will let us stay in our house a couple extra days. My ENTIRE family, sans Hermana Sabrina stay at my in-laws instead of my new house. We still bless Samuel on Sunday.

Needless to say, I have busted out the chocolate chips while typing this one handed. Thankfully this afternoon will look like this

I have the best mother in law!

PRAY for us, please??

Sunday, September 18, 2011

An Uphill Battle

I've been battling breast thrush for the last 6 weeks... yes, you read that right, 6 weeks! It's been a really really hard thing to keep a positive outlook on. I'm at the end of my second 2 week prescription of anti-fungal and the yeast being gone is looking slim. Here is what things have looked like around here in the last month and a half:

During labour I was given 7 doses of penicillin... HELLO yeast infection!!!!!!

The next 2 weeks I stayed away from everything white and containing sugar, while slamming acidophilus and plain yogurt

SERIOUS pain, my diagnosis, and starting my first round of dyflucan

Beginning of week 2 on dyflucan... mastitis! antibiotics+anti fungal= neutralization!

Finished antibiotics and anti fungal, saw a lactation consultant for my "cracked nipples" to work on latch

Week 3... the yeast grew and grew!

Week 4... SO MUCH PAIN!!!! I called back to the breastfeeding clinic and insisted they get me in... thank heavens they did!

Start dyflucan that night, along with 4 times a day mouthwash for Samuel and gentian violet for myself

Bleach and boil my breastpads and bra

Boil the soothers, bottles, etc for 5 minutes daily

EVERYTHING was stained purple... sheets, towels, Samuel's mouth, my body, bra, counter, floor, you get the picture

2 weeks of dyflucan prescription finished... pain and red back again

HORRIFIC experience back at the bf clinic as the original doctor I saw is out of town for the next 2 weeks

Went in and saw my family doctor

NEW anti fungal Ketoconazole and a steroid cream

Day 2 of my new prescription...

I'm still in a lot of pain :(

I'll keep you posted on this one... I'm hoping this is the LAST prescription I have to take for thrush!