Dec 2, 2013

{merry christmas cards}




I'm hoping to start sharing with you all some of the small businesses that I love. So when some dear friends of ours showed me these great christmas cards they designed, it just seemed like the perfect way to start! You can check them out on Etsy at MondayWednesday.

Nov 20, 2013

{little tonto}

here is one of the few things that i have failed to mention yet. i started a business a few months back! all of the pieces just fell together for it really quickly - its been a whirlwind couple of months - but it has been such a wonderful hobby for me. & as a mom - its actually been really nice to have something else to put some thought into. & i've missed having some sort of creative outlet, so this is it.

so this is little tonto. it was born out of a desire to just have some shoes that actually fit isaac. with a bit of a moccasin flare, which i wanted to incorporate because my family is native american.
isaacs feet are still so itty bitty, its nice to have something fit him finally! i ended up with dozens of them before i even realized what i was doing & it got me thinking that i should try my hand at selling them. its a great nap time project to work on each day. so that was surprise number 1.

hint: surprise 2 isn't a new baby ;)

you can visit my etsy shop if you're interested, or visit the little button on the side of my blog.








Oct 29, 2013

{now we have turned two}





*just a quick note on the birthday party theme, since a few people have mentioned it. my family is native american & i'm very proud of my heritage & culture & have studied & understand where my family comes from & our history. this was just a fun way for my family to celebrate our heritage & also have fun with our friends. we kept it lighthearted & dressed up because its a two years olds party. my intent wasn't to offend, or mock a culture. thank you so much for your thoughts - we really felt we were able to do this with a clear conscience & just have fun!*

isaac turns two years old earlier this month. i don't know where the time has gone with him at all.
i've been thinking the past few weeks about his years with us - i feel as though a lot of you have really been on this journey together with our family & have been so faithful to pray for him. thank you is never enough, but thank you, still, from the bottom of our hearts!

he has actually showed a lot of forward motion in the past two or three months - something we don't take at all for granted around here. his vocabulary has exploded. he can say 20-30 words - in his own special way. we're able to figure most of them out ;)

one big thing that has changed for us in the past few months is that we have come to realize that his kidney disease is actually more serious than we though. he has moderate kidney failure & his function is slowly decreasing. this means we will probably {eventually} need a kidney transplant, along with everything else. years & years away, hopefully. we aren't going there yet, but for now a preventative measure is monitoring his diet more closely & limiting his intake of protein.

so, right now i could tell you that i'm okay with this new development. i'm starting to understand it a bit better & parts of it have actually been a positive thing for us - i'll explain that in a minute. but when i was first given the news i was NOT okay. i was stressed to the max at the thought of changing isaacs diet - a diet that was almost 100% milk based {still not much of a food eater, that kid...} & receiving news that now he couldn't even have all of his milk was just crazy talk. a quick side note just to explain that - from what i understand, when your kidneys aren't working right, its hard for your body to process protein & your kidneys work even harder & wear out more quickly. meaning you would need a kidney transplant sooner than later. so its definitely a valid concern. but isaac is just...complicated. so adding in the fact that its still so hard to feed him any solids - or really even juice for that matter - this was a problem, BUT the crazy/wonderful/glorious part of this was that we decided to test out this diet, & as we gave him less milk, he actually started eating solid foods (!!!) very very small amounts, but he is getting better each week, so that now, three months later, he is able to feed himself little bits of whatever we are eating - so long as its mashed & easy to chew. some days he still eats better than others but we are super encouraged by this. he has also gained a pound and a half in the past three months which is FABULOUS for him. up until these changes we had been talking about finally just getting him a g-tube, but he is doing SO well right now all of that is on hold again. good news :)

now you are updated. that is all of the big stuff - with some doctor visits in between. oh, & a trip to minnesota to visit a transplant hospital! that was kind of a big deal too. we're just doing some early scouting, so nothing really urgent at this point.

all of the photos are from isaacs birthday party. its pretty self explanatory. we had an indian party. with lots of feather & face paint & he loved it. he was much more curious about everything than last year. so fun to see :)

Sep 25, 2013

{maine pt. 4}



the last photos of our maine trip. i still can't get it out of my head...

we have had lots - & i mean LOTS of crazy, busy, life-path changing goings on in the past several months. so i'll be updating with those soon. i hardly know where to start, so i think i wont even try for today, but soon. very soon.

Aug 17, 2013

{maine pt. 3}






these are photos from camp sunshine. the maine part of our trip {ahhh sorry. i couldn't help it!} this was only our second year, but i already am looking forward to going back each year as isaac gets older. last year was wonderful, but overwhelming. so this year, knowing what to expect & knowing more of the people was so much more wonderful. & of course knowing this year how to properly eat a lobster helped, too. i wish i had taken pictures of some of the wonderful families we were able to spend time with this year. i didn't get any except of the sweet boys above with isaac. they were some of my favorites. one of the highlights of my trip was meeting them! isaac was so much more alert this year & really loved it too. he had buddies in his class {in the photo above} that read to him & snuggled him while we were in sessions all day. missing it already...i can't even describe to people really how at home we felt with the people there. like we'd known them all for ages & ages & not just for a few days. hoping next year comes again soon :)

Jul 27, 2013

{maine pt. 2}



these photos are after our third day on the road, just an hour away from camp sunshine. we found a little seafood dive called fisherman's catch. we warmed our tummies with delicious clam chowder. this was just outside. we couldn't leave afterwards without capturing just a bit of maines beauty!

Jul 20, 2013

{maine pt. 1}



finally starting to tackle the mass of photos we took on our trip. hard to believe we were there only three weeks ago. missing many sweet friends & the breathtaking places tonite. 
maine, you have stolen my heart.

Jul 15, 2013

{isaac meets more family}


we were blessed to spend most june with friends we dont get to see very often. & these were two of the oldest & dearest. they hadn't met isaac yet in person. we got to host them in our home for just a few days. it was the first time we've actually had people stay with us for quite awhile. the house felt so quiet & breakfast time wasn't as nice when they left. isaac & i both felt it. i wish we could have friends here with us always. he loved his 'grammy' marian & aunt jess. i hate that we live on different coasts from them, but we did have lots of fun...


Jul 10, 2013

{i love you to the moon & back}

i asked isaac if he loved me & this is the face i kept getting. he is more precious each day.{working on mailing out our giveaway prints this week, by the way & recently back from maine! thats why its been so quite around here...}

Jun 7, 2013

{& the winner is...}



there you have it, guys.

i have no words that can adequately thank you all. this has been such an exciting week for us! i'm starting to feel like a little elf getting everyones prints ready to mail...

also, thank you for everyone that shared/retweeted/pinned this. we also picked a name at random from everyone that shared, so beth murphy, you will be getting a little something from us, too!

May 29, 2013

{A Latte for FA + A Pretty Neat Giveaway}

GIVEAWAY CLOSED! 
thank you all from the bottom of our hearts for making this such a success.
we are announcing the winner friday morning!


Today is a very special day. One we have been planning for for a long time. Today we are doing a couple things - we are first, raising money for FA & also giving away a fun package of things picked just for you. 100% of the proceeds will go to the Fanconi Anemia Research Fund.

{This part is all research stuff. Just know this will really help Isaac. A lot!!!}

Last fall we were able to get together with the people that run FARF at Camp Sunshine.
We wouldn't fundraise for anything we didn't feel was incredibly hopeful. I know money just doesn't happen in abundance for most of us, but we really believe in what this group is doing.
For example, successful unrelated donor matches for FA has risen from 0% in 1989 to over 89% in some specialized transplant centers. An unrelated donor transplant is what we are probably looking at with Isaac right now, so that is GOOD NEWS! & for us right now, the most exciting bit of research happening is with gene therapy, which basically would mean no transplants! More on research info here.


SO HERE IS WHAT WE'RE GIVING AWAY!



AND AS A VERY SPECIAL THANK YOU




1. Click on the picture of Isaac above to donate - We are actually going to be writing out each name by hand & letting Isaac pick one.We figure if you are taking the time to donate, we can take the time to write out each of your names! So each $5 is your name in a jar.

2. If you donate $25 or more we would like to say a very extra special thank you & send you a print.  Just note A, B, C or D in the comment section when you donate & include your address for us.
We have connected up with some fabulous artists that have made this possible, so THANK YOU to Dan Romanoski {a}, Eric Hurtgen {b}, Sarah Helser {c}, & Seth Remsnyder {d}

*note: we have a limited number of the Eric Hurtgen print {b} so please include a second option in case we run out.

**international donators: we so appreciate you being apart of this with us. we would love to cover as much of shipping as we can, but would appreciate if you could include $4 extra if you would like a print.

3. Comment below {just for fun} & spread the word. we will also be picking someone at random for repinning, tweeting, sharing etc...& send you a special something as well :)


Giveaway ends at midnite EST on June 5th. 

May 22, 2013

{save a baby isaac: donate your cord blood}


calling all: pregnant mommies, future mommies, friends of mommies & daddies: this is something AMAZING you can do to save a life. it is super simple. it requires little time, no extra doctor visits, procedures - nothing.

i'm talking about CORD BLOOD. 

did you know you could donate it? because i didn't, & i wish i had.
i have talked about becoming a bone marrow donor before, but cord blood is an alternative to bone marrow depending on the patient. its an either/or. so it is JUST as important.

even if this post doesn't apply to you particularly, please please SHARE IT! post it. pin it {thats why i have all the type across my photo today}. tweet it. the more i talk with people the more i realize that this isn't a widely known option. cord blood banking is becoming more talked about, but to know that if you don't choose to save your cord blood there is an incredible, life saving alternative to throwing it away!

i am going to walk you thru all of the steps to getting you informed as best as i can. you ready?

step one:

you can start first by watching this two minute video from Be The Match.

<iframe width="640" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/bh_xoXf16AE?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

step two:

know what options you have with your cord blood. i will say, briefly: you can donate it, save in a private bank, save for a sibling with medical needs or do nothing.

more info on those HERE.

step four:

if you decide you would like to donate {horray horray! you rockstar you}, the steps to follow are all listed out pretty clearly HERE.

i will lay them out for you on here, too, if you aren't a clicker.

1. talk to your doctor. as soon as possible is great. the window you want to hit for setting it up with the cord bank is between 28-34 weeks, so you have 7 weeks to get this done. i would still tell your doctor if you are considering it even if it is earlier though. & mark it on your calendar, so you don't forget. remember that pregnancy brain people told you about? its not a lie. you will thank me.

2. once you have reached your 28 week mark, go to Be The Match & fill out a 12 question survey to learn if you are eligible to be a cord blood donor.

3. if you are eligible, the survey will take you to a page where you select your state. from there, a list of the hospitals in your state that currently collects cord blood for public banks will appear. if your hospital IS listed, you will need to make a quick phone call to contact the cord blood bank. it is listed right next to the hosptials name. they will give you any further instructions & information.

4. if your hospital is NOT listed, select the 'not listed' button. from there you can fill out a referral form online. this will give a cord blood bank in your area your info so they can possibly send you a collection kit. there isn't a guarantee that you will be able to donate, but it is DEFINITELY worth pursuing! at that point you wait.

That is IT! Really not complicated. a few clicks. a phone call. a few minutes talking with your doctor & look what you just did?

you saved a baby isaac just like that!

the website, i really think is quite clear, but if you have any further questions dont give up! email someone at Be The Match. I have talked with many of them & they are there to help you out! you can feel free to contact me as well. i won't be able to answer questions quite so well, but i will do my darndest.



{p.s. FA Fundraiser coming in the next week so keep checking back! we have some pretty great things to give away for you guys!}