Sunday, December 14, 2014

Family of Five

Exciting news, in 2015 we will be a family of five! Eek! We've thought long and hard since we've been together about whether or not having a little one (without fur) was for us, and recently, we decided to go for it! We are excited to welcome a new addition, coming June 2015! 

I thought this would be a nice spot to record what's going on in the pregnancy. Or at least try to document it...as you can see I haven't blogged in a year so don't trust that I'll keep it up. Whoopsie! 

Big thanks to Hollie Dyson Photography for taking our announcement photos! 















How far along?  As of today, 11 weeks, 6 days!
Total weight gain/measurements: 0 lbs. I am just as shocked as you are! The doc was proud. This won't last much longer.
Maternity clothes: I embraced those early, because I was given so many as gifts and I was bloated. I heart maternity jeans. I may never go back to regular jeans.
Have you started to show yet? Nope. Just bloated some days. 
Friday rushing before work. 11 weeks 4 days
Don't mind the ghetto phone selfie.
Stretch marks: Trying my best! But I'm prone to them! I've had stretch marks since my growth spurt at 12 years old, so I am certain I'll have them.
Sleep: Not good. I wake up multiple times a night. Have only had one baby dream and it was probably 2 weeks ago. It was a boy. I do fall asleep any chance I get though. I love the couch.
Best moment this week: Finding out all was well at an emergency appointment, and I got to see baby move for the first time! Was so sad Darren didn't get to see, but Mom and Sam did. Emergencies suck.
Miss anything? Energy. I never had a ton, but I feel like I've been beaten on a daily basis now. It is slightly better, after a solid month of not cleaning, we cleaned the house soooo good last weekend. Now just trying to keep it up.
Movement: None. But I got to see it on the screen! 
Food cravings: Potatoes, potatoes, potatoes. This baby loves them. Which is funny, since I have never cared about potatoes. And of course, Icees. 
Anything making you queasy or sick? Seeing raw meat, and basically having to think about or smell anything I'm not craving at that moment. Oh and prenatal vitamins. They are the devil. Funny, since I've taken them for my hair and nails for over 2 years, suddenly now they make me sick. 
Gender: We think boy. Although Mom and Darren have both had girl dreams. Darren still thinks boy.
Labor signs: Heck no, too early!
Symptoms: Sore body-this is by far my worst symptom right now and has been for weeks-especially legs, feet, and boobs. Less nausea now, occasional bloat, faintness, exhaustion. I also cry, like every day. Almost always over sentimental stuff. Although Friday night I cried because I didn't feel good. No joke. Like a 4 year old. And lawd have mercy it's Christmas!
Belly button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On and still fit well. For now!
Happy or moody most of the time: Tired and weepy. I'm nuts.
Thankful for: The baby still being here-I don't think I'll ever stop worrying about that. Darren helping me so much when I'm home (I basically suck and do nothing at home right now). My snuggly puppies, and Mom for being there for all of the emergencies! 
Looking forward to: Not being so tired-the supposed "magic" of the second trimester, and when I actually feel like cleaning, learning the baby's gender so we can make room plans.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Be the change-EVERYONE can help. Everyone can do something.

I'd like to get something off my chest. Something that people may not necessarily want to hear, but they should. As a shelter volunteer, I hear a lot of excuses every day about why people can't help the helpless. "I don't know how you go there every day. It's too heart breaking for me." "I don't have time," "I don't have money." At this point to me, your excuses are just that, excuses.  As big David always says, "Excuses only satisfy the person giving them." He's right. When I hear someone say that helping at the shelter is too sad, too hard, I think of a few things: I am quite possibly the most sensitive person you will ever meet, especially when it comes to animals. Yet I am able to donate my time to a kill shelter. How? Why? Because if I don't, then who will? Should these animals just sit there in their cold concrete pens and die a lonely death because I was too scared to shed a tear? I know that I can't save them all. But I can surely make their life better while they are here. I can advertise them for free online and possibly save a life. Knowing a helpless animal is going to be put down is tough. It is sad. You know what would make me even more sad? Is knowing that I didn't try hard enough for that animal by simply sharing their photo on Facebook, or coming to the shelter to take them outside for ten minutes. Yes it's cold outside. That's what big coats and gloves are for. Stop with the excuses. 

I understand not everyone is passionate about animals. But, you're passionate about something right?  What are you doing to help someone that needs help? A friend, a family member, or even better, a stranger? How about babies that are born too early and need help? Contact the March of Dimes. See what you can do. Not interested in homeless pets? How about homeless people? How about the hungry? How about people suffering with AIDS, why not donate to them? Has cancer touched someone in your life? Volunteer or donate to the thousands of cancer charities out there. How about the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society? Find the charity online that is closest to your heart and get started. Please, don't wait another day. There are millions of great organizations out there to help others, whether human or animals. It seems to me the common practice is to maybe donate to something once, and then forget about it. You donated? That's great. I'm glad you did. Every little bit helps! Can you donate again? Can you donate your time? Can you take 3 seconds to share a post to help someone less fortunate on Facebook?  Sometimes something as small as sharing a post of an at risk animal on Facebook means the difference between life and death for that animal. Countless animals have been saved just by sharing their information, and that information getting to the right person or rescue group. 

I know we all do the best we can with what we have. But please ask yourself- Can I do better? I know I can. I can donate more time. Post more, and share knowledge. Can you give of your time? Or a few dollars to help the charity of your choice? There are so many ways to help others. Even online shopping can help donate to your favorite cause- check out Amazon Smile. By using your login and that link every time you do your online Amazon shopping, at no cost to you, the charity of your choice receives a small donation. Every little bit helps, and we can all do more. 

This Thanksgiving, why not show how thankful you are for your blessings by donating your time or even a small amount of money to your favorite cause? This Christmas, instead of spending hundreds and thousands of dollars on gifts that will soon be tossed and forgotten, why not donate your time or a small portion of what would have went to thousands of dollars in gifts to your favorite charity? 

If you'd like to help someone or something, but you're not sure where to donate, please consider my favorites-check them out HERE.

If you are blessed with children, why not teach them early about the spirit of giving? With time, or with money. It doesn't take much. Teach the future generations about charity, and our world could be a better place one day.

We can all do something. We can all make a difference. It's never too late to get started. You could save a life with a little time or money. Just a little. Or the click of a "share" button. Think about it! :)





Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Safe Home for the little Prince

Our little family has some news. What's not news-for the past few months I've been spending a lot of my time at the local animal control/pound. I have really been enjoying it! I can honestly say it is the best thing I have ever done with my time. I LOVE snuggling and petting the pups and feeding them excessive amounts of treats, and the cats too! I never thought I was a cat person, but we have so many sweet kitties at the pound, I couldn't help falling in love! 

You may recall that back in late May, early June we took in a rescue dog in NC-Henry. Henry was a very sweet boy and we quickly fell for him. Once we brought him home, we quickly realized that he had a serious aversion to Darren-and really any man he came in contact with around us. We have no idea why-we can only speculate that he was either abused-I really hope not-by a man, or he had only really only spent the first few years of his life with women.  It got to the point where if Darren was in the house, Henry was growling and barking at him the entire time, he wouldn't relax, and of course, Darren couldn't either. We were broken hearted. This dog that we thought we could give a good home, well, we couldn't. He was unhappy, and Darren couldn't be happy in his home either-even with a dog he had quickly fell in love with. So with many tears and much regret, we let the foster/rescue manager take him back. She was so kind. Her top priority was to make sure Henry was happy, and we were too. She completely understood. I am so grateful for how wonderful she was through the entire process. It took several months for us to "get over" what happened. We are happy to say that Henry has been adopted and found his forever home now! :) 

We've been wanting a second dog since we started dating, and we just couldn't seem to find "the one." As much as we ADORE Miss Coco, we really didn't want to go to a breeder again. I've learned a lot about the importance of spaying your pups since I got Coco, and we ultimately just couldn't imagine purchasing a pup when there are millions of dogs in need out there. We were hesitant though-after our sad story with Henry-we weren't sure what to do. Would the next rescue dog get along with both of us? Would they get along with Coco? 

Fast forward to now-after many days spent at the pound, falling in love with ALL of their animals, we were waiting for "the one" to pop up. We quickly fell in love with a Pit Bull there-KJ. Sadly, his breed is not allowed where we live, so we couldn't bring him home. I wish there could be a way for us to take him, but we just can't. While we can't bring him home, I can at least spend my days loving on him at the pound. KJ has been there for over a year now. As much as I love seeing him there each time I go, I do hope he gets a good home soon. This brings us to our news...

A few weeks ago, a cute little Pomeranian was at the pound. When I met him, I just got this feeling-maybe he's the one. I assumed his owner would be back to pick him up soon though, so no need falling in love. I can't get my hopes up again. This sweet little boy was found in a restaurant parking lot wandering near a very busy road. Someone was kind enough to put him in their car and give Animal Control a call.  I could tell at the pound that he was well behaved and very friendly-so I tested him-I brought Darren in to meet him. Darren instantly liked him, and he loved Darren.  His owner did pick him up several days later...but less than two weeks later, he was found again, this time wandering in the middle of a very busy road. It is truly a miracle that he wasn't hit by a car. Again I thought, we should take him. He needs to be safe. We sat down and thought about how he got along so well with both of us. Could we take in another dog right now? Would he get along with Coco? We ultimately decided that this dog needed a safe home that would keep him leashed for outside walks so he'd always be safe, and a warm home...and maybe a little spoiling. After speaking with the original owner a few times, who was a self proclaimed breeder, we decided to take him in. After meeting with her and seeing his living conditions, we are very glad we did. Once we got him home, we quickly realized that he was not in good shape. While he seemed happy, he was in desperate need of a bath and a serious haircut-he had awful matting, especially in and around his tail area. As soon as we put him in the bath, we also noticed that he was covered in fleas. After two flea baths and a brushing and blow dry, we quickly realized we were going to have to take him to a pro. Luckily, we were able to get an emergency appointment for the following morning. I knew he'd look completely different...he was already several shades whiter just from the baths we had given him. 

As we bathed him and brushed him, Coco was right there with us, trying her best to comfort him. We knew then that we'd made the right decision. He got along with us, he got along with Coco, and he was in desperate need of a safe home. 

We took him in for his grooming session the following morning, and the groomer did her best to try to save his coat, but it was too far gone. We didn't care. We were positive before we brought him in that he'd need to be completely shaved down, and we were fine with it. She also did her best to get rid of the fleas. After much work, we are pretty sure they are gone! She also pointed out that one of his nails had grown so long, that it had curled and grown back into his paw, so she had to take care of that. She also pointed out that there were several teeth mark scars from where he appeared to be attacked by a large dog. His previous owner confirmed that their large dog attacked him several times. :( We also think at some point his tail was broken. There is a kink in the end and that part can't move. It may have already healed and reset-we'll be sure to ask the vet. The groomer said he was very well behaved and she was so glad that we gave him the safe home he needed. 

It's Sunday, and we got him on Friday night. We have already fallen in love with him. He's getting along great with Coco-aside from a bit of jealousy when it's snuggle time with momma. Coco has taught him his place, and they've established that she's the dominant one. I'll be calling the vet first thing in the morning to get an exam, all his shots and have him neutered. The only shot he's had since his first year is his rabies shot, so we have a lot of catching up to do. We are crossing our fingers that he doesn't have any issues-but we are aware that he could have worms, heartworms, lyme disease, or any number of things from not being vaccinated or ever given heartworm or flea and tick preventative. We've already started him on his first dose of these. 

He is settling right in-currently snuggling beside me and Coco on the couch. Since he's so cold and not used to not having much hair, we picked him up a couple of fleece shirts. He looks adorable! We went back and forth about a name. His original name was Skyy...but he didn't answer to it, and after seeing his previous situation, we wanted him to have a fresh start. He prances when he walks, so Mike suggested Prince. It seemed so fitting. But my good friend's dog is also a Prince. We joked about Jack...he'd be Jack Daniels ;) It wasn't royal enough. Nothing else seemed to fit. If Coco is royalty, shouldn't he be as well? So last night Darren confirmed, Prince it is. We all know how ridiculous I am about my dog...so of course he can't just have one name. Without further ado, meet...

HRH Prince Sebastian Fluffybottom Daniels-Prince for short ;)


When we first met at the pound































4 1/2 years old, 11 lb Pomeranian-and the Prince of the Daniels home. As my friend Marina said..."The owner wanted to meet you to make sure you are good with dogs??? They must not realize this dog is about to go to the freaking Doggy Kingdom!"

Amen! 


Isn't he sweet???







Coming home! He couldn't quite figure out the car seat :)

























Some of his matting :(

First bath!


After the groomer. He loves car rides!

Handsome Prince-Feels so much better!



After we gave him his new toys, blanket, and clothes.
He's not used to all this, but he's liking it!!!

Getting sleepy...

Going down....

And out!

We found some awesome deals on his stuff. So thankful!
Perfect for our little Prince

Brother and Sister

Be still my heart!

My Heaven

Sunday morning snuggles on Mommas legs








Thursday, May 9, 2013

One Year.

It's been one year since the best day of our lives. April 21, 2012. 


Photo by Hollie D. Photography

Photo by Hollie D. Photography













































































So, if I could sum up our first year in a few words?

Joy. Frustration. Growing Pains. Excitement. Change. Moves. Love. Dates. Love. Love. Love.

Aside from the normal ups and downs I believe all couples experience, our first year was pretty darn good! 

We decided on a low key celebration. Darren made all the plans. As a planner, usually I'd want to be the one in charge...but I loved the thoughtfulness of his idea so much-I wouldn't have had it any other way. 

Anniversary day started with church and Sunday School. It was a Sunday after all. Then we went to the grocery store and picked items out for lunch. We came home, packed our lunch, packed up Coco, and headed to the park by the lake for a picnic. We had a great time on a blanket right by the water with our lunch, our love, and of course, Coco. We enjoyed a few hours there in that spot, then decided to walk around. We checked out the doc and the trail. Coco was of course thrilled to come along! 

For dinner we got dolled up and went to a spot that Darren picked out-Copper. It's a lovely Indian cuisine place in Charlotte. It was very romantic, and the food was so delicious! Especially dessert. We got a sampler that they offered (me a sampler? Surprise right?) with a chocolate molten cake and then two little Indian desserts...they were SO good. I think about those desserts every day to this day. YUM. Time to go back! 

We really had a great day. We've been looking into finally planning a getaway. We haven't found the perfect time and place yet, but we are still looking. We finally got our passports, so that is a start! 

I am looking forward to the next thousand or so years with this guy. I love him. 





Are your picnics this fancy?

Mmm!




Friday, March 1, 2013

Friday Phone Dump


Happy Friday Ya'll!!!

























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