Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas At Our House

Christmas is going to be a...lot different this year. Colton works Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, we don't have a tree, or lights, or anything to be festive, and we decided to keep presents to a minimum.  Colton got a gym pass he really wanted, so he can train MMA, and a video game that he's been drooling over for months. He makes me feel sad because he's trying to find "things" to give to me for Christmas, because he feels sad not having anything under the tree, but I don't want things. I am just happy to have HIM. I am happy to have a healthy baby. To have our bills paid, a nice home and a steady income. I told him my ring will be my biggest present and I know it will come as soon as we can afford it.

My parents are doing things differently also-they decided to take a big family trip instead of doing gifts, because material things are always forgotten, but memories and family time is remembered. I'm not going with them-ten hours in a car and nine months pregnant, without Colt, Pass. The good news is, on their way out of town, they are stopping in to Cedar City to spend the holidays with us.

We are excited for home cooked food, family time and a warm apartment. We (my mom and I) will also be working on Tai's nursery, and getting it all set up for the little guy. I can't express how much I love my mom, especially now with living "married" life and being so pregnant. I call her so many times a day I know she is sick of me. But she helps me so much.

We also are officially caught up on all of our bills! This makes me so excited because it's been a struggle the last few months to make ends meet with Colton changing jobs and bills piling up. But now we are up to date and can start saving money again. Maybe even ordering a pizza once in a blue moon (Colton's ultimate happiness) and getting a shiny object ;)

In baby news, I have had HORRIBLE heartburn.I will randomly get acid attacks and start coughing and it really feels like I can't breathe! Someone wrote that bad heartburn = baby born with a full head of hair. Which we already know this little guy has. I told Colton that random pregnancy tidbit and he said "ya, I already knew that, a lady I helped at work told me." (Because my pregnancy gets discussed with random lady 's who get photos at Walgreens.) He is a funny boy. He is always coming home with stories for me "Today, I saw a lady with a baby, it was such a cute baby." (That's pretty much what all the stories consist of.)  He also changes how far along we are on a regular basis. "She's 39 weeks right now, so only 4 more to go."

My back pain is AWESOME. No one told me I would have trouble rolling over, or getting up. Or that my feet would be so swollen my toes wouldn't touch the ground. I'm starting to get the wide eyed stares. "You are still up and about?"

We took a tour of the hospital, Colton LOVED it. He was stoked that the baby gets cleaned and bathed and measured all in the same room we stay in. He told the nurse excitedly that he can sleep on the floor or "anywhere really" after she showed him the pull out bed that she deemed "uncomfortable." He checked out the bathtub and the light switches and the equipment. Peered through the nursery. Inspected the hospital bed. You name it. When we got home, he announced, "I'm going to work, when I get home, you need to have the hospital bag all packed so we can leave at a moments notice."

I love him.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

To Work...Or Not To Work

I am torn.

Colton is working about 60 hours a week right now, doing everything he can to make ends meet. I am on family medical leave, until I decide (if I decide) to go back to work.

Here's the thing.
I HATE my job. I work for a company called Convergy's (usually just the name results in a unanimous "oh..." or a groan. "That place." Most people have a cousin, sister, aunt, friend, ex who worked there at one point or another. It's a call center, inbound calls, AT&T. So when you call someone because your cell phone isn't working, and you scream at them, that's me on the other end. It's fabulous. Thanks, by the way.

I don't really mind the actual job. I can help people, I can be nice, I can solve problems. It's just the constant CHANGE that is absolutely unbearable. Just when you get used to certain expectations, they add new ones. When I started, it was simple, inbound customer service. Period. There was a lot of time between calls, it was relaxed. Awesome. Then things, they start changing. Some of us are then asked to voluntarily switch to selling a TV service. Commission, no pressure. Easy.

Then they mandate sales. If you don't offer, it's a write up. Then the whole floor is forced to sell, but you can choose what product you are comfortable selling. Fine. I am good at upgrading service, I can do that. Then all the sudden I am "Too Good" at upgrading, and they are forcing me to move to selling new products. So I do good at my job, they screw me over with something I don't want to do. They literally changed company rules so that they could force me to sell.

Then, to make things less complicated, the whole center is moved to selling. You must offer on every call.  You must push people even if they don't want a product. Sell Sell Sell. That's the motto. Just when you think they can't mandate anything else. They do. They can now fire you for not selling. Doesn't matter if you make a great offer, push it for an hour, get close, if you don't sell them tv service, it's a write up. If you do sell, but you don't sell them ENOUGH, that's a write up too.

They no longer work with school schedules, they are pushing mandatory overtime (so I go from 30 hours a week to 40+ with school) they don't do schedule changes, swaps or make exceptions. You have a doctors note? Cool, you are still getting written up.

I haven't worked since October. Between being so sick all the time, exhausted, moody, and adjusting to a new life, I just couldn't take it anymore. I'm still technically employed, I could go back tomorrow if I wanted to, but I don't. "I just can't want to."

It doesn't help that my Team Leader has changed 5 times in the last 4 months. So every time one understands my situation, I get a phone call "introducing" themselves, because my old team leader got fired for this or that (they are huge fans of firing people for not making sales.) It doesn't help that all my friends who worked there are now gone, fired for attendance, quit because of unreasonable expectations, tired of being written up for ever changing rules.

Sounds like I should quit, right?

But i'm also stubborn. I like having a back up. I like the idea of going back if I need to. With that job, Colton
and I can live quite comfortably, without it, we are barely making ends meet. I know I can find something better for me after I'm ready to go back to work, after Tai is born, I haven't tried finding anything new because honestly, who hires someone that is 6 months pregnant? So for now it's an inner battle.

Colton brought it up again last night.

"Babe, you just need to quit, let go of the stress of that job. Tai is gonna be here in a month, just spend the time relaxing and nesting and getting ready for him, I don't mind working long hours to have you home."

To this I reply something about extra income, and he says "what extra income, you haven't worked in months, you've been on bed rest,  you rarely leave the house, you don't even like to drive."

I then struggle to adjust on my seat, and make a whimpering noise because my tailbone KILLS.

Colton responds "exactly." You barely can sit up without being in pain, there's no way you are going to be able to sit 8 hours a day, talking to angry people in your hormonal state. You will get written up for something stupid and will have a complete break down. Not only that but you being under stress isn't good for our little guy, quit. Right now. Quit."

At this point he mentions egging, peeing on, and lighting Convergy's on fire. (He worked there too, left such a bad taste in his mouth he doesn't even want me associating with them, HA.)

So again, i'm torn. It's a good paying job. I could make an extra $2000 dollars before baby comes, which when living on a tight budget is a lot of money. But I just don't know if it's worth it. If the stress is worth it. If being in physical pain for 8 hours a day when i'm already exhausted is worth it.

And now my sweetie is home, he just screamed that our house smells "AMAZING" (BBQ chicken sandwiches in the crockpot. :) and is mumbling about work.

Have a good day :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Are We There Yet?

34 Weeks. 6 Weeks Left. Due next month.
That is crazy.

My back hurts, my tailbone kills, I am in the bathroom every five minutes. GAH.
I feel like a dinosaur. My belly is so big and my arms are so small that when i'm buckled into my seat belt I can't reach the cup holder.

Laugh it up.

It's been a crazy couple of weeks at our house. We just got back from visiting family in Heber and Salt Lake. I had my baby shower, which was amazing. We are so blessed and this little boy is so blessed. To anyone and everyone that came, thank you so much. Every package of diapers, outfit, pacifier and blanket will help us so, so much. Never again will I miss a baby shower if I can help it, because I understand now how much young mom's and young families like me appreciate the help and the support.

I needed the support and love more than anything. I got amazing advice, wonderful tools, and a sense of relief like, I can do this, i'm ready for this little guy.

Colton wasn't able to be there, and was way bummed out. He was in Salt Lake replacing the breaks and tires on our car. Pretty crucial for safe winter travels to visit grandma's and a new baby I think? But he went through everything with me later that night and was ELATED at all the fun stuff we got. He is getting so antsy for his little guy to get here, and I love watching him delicately examine all of Tai's stuff. I am so lucky to have such a good man by my side (and a patient one, man i'm moody.)

A few of our favorite baby gifts?

Colton's favorite was the Shark Towel, he LOVES it. I was elated about the diaper bag, which I never imagined in a million years I would get, and the Bumbo, because I really, really, really wanted one. We also got some super cute outfits, adorable blankets, baby toys and travel things.

To everyone who was there, from me and Colton, thank you SO SO SO much.

In other news, I went in for my checkup yesterday, and the doctor said our baby boy has a BIG head., it's about two weeks ahead of the rest of his body. Which makes it even more unlikely for this little body to take on a vaginal birth. He is really trying to make his mama pay. I just really, really, REALLY, don't want to do a C-section. The recovery and scars and stomach damage just seems like quite an ordeal. So we are going to try as hard as we can to go natural, but will do whatever is safest for Tai.

Our nursery is getting full of stuff, which I am avoiding organizing like the PLAGUE. One because i'm so stinking sore all the time, and two because I don't even know where to start. We are collecting all the baby furniture, (high chair, crib, rocking chair, changing table) all which needs to be sanded and painted (they are all different woods, chipped paint, scuffed up, you name it.) Our baby needs a dresser very badly, because there is no place to put his clothes. Luckily my family is coming to spend Christmas with us and we are going to spend a couple days sanding, painting and organizing the nursery. I will post a lot of before and after pics, so maybe our extreme budget nursery can inspire someone ;)

If you have any tips on the hospital, c-sections, nursery organization, anything, let me know, please :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Excuse me?

Last night, as I rolled out of bed onto my swollen feet and hobbled to the bathroom, my sweet Colton said "we arent having any more kids, this pregnancy has almost killed me."

I am gonna kill him.

Have a nice day :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

He's Still A Boy...

We went to the Ultrasound today, I had nightmares last night that we found out our little guy was a lady.
Not that a girl would be bad (I wanted a girl so much) but, we already have all the boys clothes.
Trying to replace all of them would be traumatizing.

That being said, our little Tai has a full head of hair, according to the Ultrasound tech, who was giggling looking at it. Tai kept grabbing at his little head of hair, adorable.

He is measuring a little earlier than we planned, one to two weeks, so we will see if he's an early bird.

Oh yeah, did I mention we got this lovely gem :)

That's our son :)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Not Cut Out For This...

I am so stressed!

This week has been car insurance, health insurance, taxes, W-2's. New jobs, adding, removing and changing services. I am not cut out for this stuff! I don't know what services I need and don't need when it comes to car insurance! I have no clue what a good rate is for health insurance, or if I'm getting ripped off. It's so frustrating.

I feel like an idiot when someone asks me if I "need" a certain service. And half the companies won't even talk to me, because Colton and I are not married, and by the time he gets home they are closed.

How do you do it? How do you decide what is best for your family, while still keeping them protected and not breaking the very tight budget?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Christmas Cookies

We went and took some tummy/couples photos tonight. A friend needed some pictures for a school project, and  Colton came along for the ride so we could do couple's shots with my ever growing tummy. I am excited to get them back, hopefully they will turn out good! Then you might actually see a sneak peek of this 8 month pregnant whale :)

We are also getting an ultrasound on Monday! They are going to give us some 3D one's, and we will get to see our babe for the first time in 12 weeks. We are SO excited. I am at least. Colton thinks the 3D pictures are super creepy. Probably because in the first one's we got Tai looked like an alien.

So lots of pictures to come :)

Finally, in an effort to be Christmas-y today, I made Sugar Cookies. There were probably 4 or 5 dozen, and Colton was eating them as quickly as I could frost them. I had to promise him a whole plateful in order to get him to stop eating them and take some over to the neighbors. He was extremely concerned that there wouldn't be enough for him. "Why can't you just make ME cookies... I like the red ones...these are all said the red one's were for me...can I just have these ones???"

As I write this he has a plate of ten on his lap that he is guarding, completely oblivious to the fact that there are 50 more sitting on our counter. Men.

Charlie Brown

I have been feeling pretty bummed out this year. Mostly because we don't have any Christmas decorations, or a tree to put up, or anything festive like that. It didn't seem like a great investment to go buy a tiny fake tree for our apartment, and it wasn't in the budget, so I just kind of decided and accepted the fact that this first Christmas would have to be a little less...Christmasy.

That being said, Colton came home on his lunch break and told me to close my eyes. He pulled out a little box from under his coat. Inside was the Charlie Brown Christmas tree. A sad little guy with a single ornament. On the side of the box it said "It just needs a little love." Colt said "I didn't want you to go without a tree this year." I burst into tears and he got teary.

We both have had to sacrifice so much to afford our little Tai, and it has really brought us together and made our relationship so strong.

"The box said it just need's a little love. We don't have a lot of material things. But we do have a whole bunch of love. So I figured it would do well in our house."

I know every Christmas this special little tree will help us remember all the trials we faced in this first year.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Looking Back...

With November ending I just want to express a little bit of gratitude.

I'm grateful for my family. Who first and foremost has supported me, loved me and guided me through a time that has been very, very difficult for me. In a few short months I was thrown into married life, living with a man, being a mom, paying bills. I had to think about things like health and car insurance, maternity leave, budgets and making a home for myself and a family. I learned to prepare real meals, and keep myself healthy, and go through the day to day trials of combining two lives, and making room for a third one.

I faced the criticism and judgement of so many people. I disappointed a lot of people. I constantly hear people saying they wanted better for me, or that I won't be happy if I don't do things a specific way. But this is my reality now. I can't turn back. I can't change anything. Colton and I have chosen to walk hand in hand, as a family, even if we didn't do the steps in the right order, we are taking the steps.

I am so grateful for Colton. I have never loved, appreciated or respected him as much as I do every single day we take this journey together. He goes to work 12 hours a day, comes home and cleans the house and makes sure I am comfortable and happy. He takes time out of his busy schedule to go grocery shopping with me, make every doctors appointment and date night. He is always bringing me little treats, or offering to brush my hair when I'm having a rough night. He is there in an instant if I call him. Always asking if I need a snack, or some cold water, or a hug. I have watched him transform from a selfish boy, to a strong man who loves his family and his son more than words could ever describe. I could not do this without him. I wouldn't want to do it with anyone else. I am so proud of the person that he has become.

I am grateful for my friends. Every person who has supported me, lended a hand, and made me feel unconditional love through this journey. I didn't need people's judgements, or to have them tell me what they would have wanted for me. I didn't need anyone's pity. I just needed acceptance, and support, and love. I chose my path. I chose my future. And I'm at peace with it. I know that I have a good man by my side, a sweet little boy on the way, and a home that he will be loved, protected and cherished in.

After all is said and done, we took a harder road, but we are doing it hand and hand. We are ecstatic. We are anxious. And we are learning. But above all we love. We love each other. We love Tai. We love where we are at in our lives. And we love every single one of you for helping us through this, and accepting us.

Thank you, so so much.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Budget Cooking

On the topic of budgeting and saving money, meal time has been completely transformed in our house. Colton and I were so used to going out to eat all the time. He would come down and visit me and we would go out to breakfast, order a pizza for lunch and then maybe drive to St. George for sushi and shopping. We ate what we felt like, when we felt like it, and didn't worry about the costs.

Those were the days.

Fast forward 8 months. I am now a coupon cutting, meal planning, stick to the grocery list kind of girl. We had 15 home cooked dinners on a $30.00 grocery tab. It's totally do-able, and we aren't eating Ramen every night. Here's how we do it.

I get an idea of what we have in the fridge and the pantry, what will expire soon, what we need to make what we have stretch a little farther, and what we could use for more than one meal. For example.

I buy/cook a rotisserie chicken. We use it the first day for a nice dinner with mashed potatoes and rolls. The second day Colton takes it in a sandwhich to work. The third day I use it for fried rice, and then the rest of the chicken gets made into Chicken Noodle Soup for day 4. Not bad at all. We are only cooking for two after all.

I also have to ask Colton what he likes. Then I find recipes for it, and repeat! Sometimes he will ask for the same thing 3 times in a week. I've pretty much figured that Colton will stay 100% happy if he has good food to eat after a long day of work. I can totally keep my end of that bargain. So I come up with a list of meals, taking out anything that wasn't a success before, adding new recipes (thanks pinterest and facebook friends) and using ones I know he loves several times in a month. I write out a grocery list of what those meals will need, collect the coupons, and we go shopping together.

This last month we were able to get food for 45 dinners, plus breakfasts and lunch for $120.00. Something I was very proud of since our old grocery budget was around 100.00 per week.

On our list: Sweet and Sour Meatballs Over Rice, Honey Mustard Mozzarella Chicken, Wingers Wings and Fries (I make the sauce myself), Chicken Teriyaki bowls, Cranberry Pot Roast, Cheeseburger Pie, Ground Beef Enchiladas and Taco Soup, among many, many others.

So as you can see, he eats JUST FINE. If anyone else is trying to save money, I would suggest you try this. It is easy to cook at home, especially when you start stocking up on ingredients, and most of my dinners are five ingredients or less. If you want any recipes, or have ideas for super easy dinners, let me know. Its a new thing we are trying out, but so far its been great. Colt thinks i'm super wife for cooking for him, and I am happy knowing he eats well and looks forward to dinners.

Like I said, we eat great, we just save money doing it. Which works out great, because a lot of times, restaurants were very disappointing anyways. We felt like we spent $30 bucks for a blah meal. Anyone else get that?

That being said, Colton just said "honey, what's for dinner." And my other little man is kicking me in the ribs. I love my little family.

Baby On A Budget

Babies are expensive. They are supposed to be the save up for years and years and then start "trying" to have a baby kind of expense. After you are on all the right diets, have the perfect pregnancy weight and are the perfect example of health. BAHAHAHA.

Anyone else have an uh-oh baby? :)

That being said we have tried to make this baby budget work. And it has been ROUGH. I was really lucky, my dad has awesome insurance, and thanks to Mr. Obama, I can stay on it until I am 28. So the hospital is 100% covered. Phew. I don't know what we would have done otherwise.

Between Colton switching jobs, rent, bill payments and winter expenses like new tires and breaks for our car, I stress daily about money (or lack of money.)

We got really, really lucky with a lot of our baby gear. Colton's parents bought us a brand new stroller and car seat set. They are excited grandparents, and wanted us to have something nice for baby, since Colton was also a surprise. :) It is such a cute set and we are so lucky to have grandparents who want to spoil the little guy :)

My mom got us the cutest swing, and I found the matching crib on KSL, which I was stoked about. We have decided we are just going to use a portable bassinet crib for Tai. It's small, and low to the ground, so I can lift my newborn in and out of his crib. With a big wooden crib, I just wouldn't be able to reach in and grab the little guy. Drop side cribs are illegal, so you can't sell them (not even on KSL or Craigslist) and that is the only kind of crib that I would even be able to use. Even on the highest mattress level, most cribs are just too tall for me, and that's no bueno for a new mommy and a fragile baby. So portable it is :)

Clothes wise, we have enough clothes to last Tai until he is at least a year old. My mom was given a huge box of boys clothes from a lady in Park City (so they are all high end baby gear.) The lady found out we were new parents starting out and just gave her whole collection to us. She also gave us blankets, burp cloths, baby monitors, changing pads, you name it.

We also went to St. George to a lady who was selling all "brand new or barely used" baby clothes. This lady had 6 huge boxes of baby boy clothes, all barely worn. She had two little boys running around, and her house looked like a boutique. I walked out completely disgusted with her, let me tell you why.

We walked into her house, and I immediately could tell that she was pregnant. After she confirmed this by saying "and I'm due again in February" I asked "oh, are you having a little girl?" Because let's be honest, who sells brand new Nike, Puma, Hurley, Gap, Air Jordan and Childrens Factory clothes when they are about to have a little boy? She does. Yeah. This lady was about to have another little boy. Here we are pinching pennies to buy our little guy used clothes and this lady is selling boxes and boxes of clothes to get her little baby something 'nicer.' Made me feel like crap. I'm getting teary even writing about it.

Wow. Ignoring my little mini break down. (Colton to the rescue.)

We left with a lot of nice stuff. Including brand new blankets, quilts, outfits, onesies, pajamas, you name it. After that shopping trip our little guy had everything he needed clothing wise, and it was all REALLY nice stuff.

We have gotten a few other things here and there, an Eddie Bauer highchair we got for free from a lady on Craigslist. Colton brought it home covered in old food, paint chipped, falling apart, looking at me like I was a nut. When I showed him it was about $150.00 brand new, he turned into Mr. Fix it. We are going to spend a weekend cleaning, painting and recovering it, and it should turn out beautiful.

This is the same for a changing table, dresser and rocking chair. All free, and will be painted and fixed up for our guy. Thank you Pinterest for the ideas. :)

So all in all, we are doing okay. We have had to do a lot of stuff to save money. We never go out to eat, rarely go up North to see family, and don't go on many dates "out." Colt doesn't get new video  games, and I don't get massages. Our date nights consist of Colt brushing my hair while we watch Netflix and playing Zelda on our Nintendo 64. Some nights we will get bundled up, and go walk around all the boutiques and holiday lights, then come home for ice cream. Not at all how it use to be. But we are truly happy. We love each other, and we know the sacrifice is worth it. It makes the little things so worth it.

And now a word from our sponsor....(Colton)

Alright so this is Colton. I have always a firm opponent of blogging and all that stuff but Mary has convinced me I need to at least say a few things on here. Hopefully I don't mess it up.... I don't have the eloquence Mary does when it comes to describing this whole baby thing but hopefully someone who reads this likes it. Mostly though Im doing this for my son  for when he is old enough to understand and appreciate it. What you do today echoes into eternity and I want to leave him something from me. Maybe a blog isn't the best place for that but at least its something.

 Its strange how much life has changed for me in these past few months. I look back at who I was and what was important to me even 6 months ago and it all seems so trivial and material. I spent all my money on Mexican food and new tattoos. I was more concerned about who I was going to hang out with after work than planning a future for myself. School didn't really matter...nothing really mattered. Life was just going by day to day and I was trying to convince myself that it was good enough.

Then out of nowhere I find out Im going to be a father. Ill be honest with you first its something I never wanted for myself or least not at that time in my life. Its a drastic change when you go from having almost no responsibility in your life to having the most important thing you could ever imagine come into it. It scared me. I wasn't ready for it, neither was Mary. Sometimes I still think about if I am ready or not.

Things didn't start off well with this pregnancy and for a long time Mary and I were not even speaking. Though as time went on I realized that I was going to be a daddy and I wasn't going to mess it up. In my heart I knew that this little baby was more important than anything and I wanted to be there for him. He deserves it.
He will always deserve it. So time went on and things got better because I decided to open up and change myself for my son to have a future and so I could give him the best I could. Things were hard and Mary and I have had a rocky road to travel but we are doing it together and we are doing it because we love each other and more importantly we love Tai.

Fast forward and now Baby Tai is only 9 weeks away from his debut and my world has flipped around and really its been one of the hardest things I have had to do. Nothing could have been more worth it. These past 7 months I feel like I have grown up more than any other time in my life. Im so proud to be father and so excited to be dad...does that make sense?

Anyway, I feel like I have said more than enough and if you are still reading....thanks


Friday, November 25, 2011

Thankful Thankful, Thanksgiving

This year was the first year Colton and I got to spend together on Thanksgiving. Which is crazy because this will be our third Thanksgiving as a couple. With baby in the picture I think people understand that we are a family, and need to stick together. His mom volunteered to wait until next year to have us-I think she just has premeditated intentions of having Tai at her Thanksgiving next year ;)

So we had dinner with my family, in Riverdale at my aunt Maryanne's house. It is going to hard for me to get used to switching back and forth for Thanksgiving. Since all my Aunt's and Uncle's on my dad's side married someone from another country (Tonga, Japan, New Zealand etc.) Every year and every holiday is with the same side of the family. So the idea of switching back and forth between two sides of the family is bizarre to me. Colton's mom side is big, and he doesn't know many people very closely on it, and his dad's side is tiny, he has two aunts, with two kids each. 14 people total. It's tiny.

There were over 50 people at my aunts house this year. It was a little bit of a culture shock to him. We had 4 turkey's. 20 pounds of mashed potatoes, 15+ pies, you get the idea. But he loved it. We came home with several pounds of leftovers, and he is beyond stoked. He called me from work today asking if I'd make him mashed potatoes, gravy, ham and stuffing. Sounds like a tall order if you don't have a huge tray of leftovers :) He was so ecstatic to have lunch, I felt so happy that he has such a great attitude about leftovers. Love him.

All in all, it was a great weekend with family. Colton is so thoughtful and open to talking to anyone who wants to know about the baby. He told my grandma how happy he is to work for his family, my uncle how thankful he is for all the advice early in the pregnancy, the list goes on. He is so genuinly excited to be a daddy and you can see it in the way he acts. My cousin's Jason + Marina just had a little girl named Olive, and watching Colton ask to hold her and playing with her little hands just melted my heart.

We also fed ducks at the duck pond, and then traveled back home so he could work today. :( I guess the super amazing black friday deals will have to wait until next year...when there is a brand new baby in tow...oh dear.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Baby Boy, Where Are You?

In one week, we will hit 8 months pregnant.
Which is very close to 9 months.
Which is VERY close to baby.
Which gives me anxiety.

In my head i'm constantly playing through "Thanksgiving...Christmas....New Years...Baby...Thanksgiving...Christmas...Baby...Christmas....AHHHH."

And then occasionally I start to cry. At which point Colton explains to whoever I freaked out on that its just normal and i'm hormonal and pregnant and blah blah blah.

Man i'm gonna miss that excuse. :)

I'm hoping that when this little guy comes, I won't feel so exhausted all the time, even after a full nights rest and multiple naps I still feel like I could go back to bed. I'm hoping I won't have acid reflux and have to sleep sitting up. I'm DYING to sleep on my stomach again. I have really bad shoulders, which I was advised not to sleep on, period. Then I was told not to sleep on my back because of the weight of the baby, which leaves me with...what exactly? Eff you Doctor know it all...

I'm also wondering where the heck this baby is hiding. Last month I looked VERY pregnant. This last week, my child buried himself into some small corner of who knows where and I had a DOCTOR ask me if we had just found out. A lady at the hair salon asked if I ever wanted to have kids. When I told her I was almost 8 months pregnant, she proceeded to have her fellow beauticians come and inspect me. A kid in one of my classes asked why I had missed so much school, and then his mouth dropped open when I told him I was pregnant. He just kept staring at my stomach, saying "there's a baby in there?" (Okay maybe I wanted to smack him.)

My best friend, Katy, is pregnant, and is due a week before me. She looks very pregnant. Not fat, not round. Just pregnant. I on the other hand, look like I gained some weight. Awesome.

Would you like to see?

I get a lot of reassurance feeling Tai kick me, otherwise I would feel like one of those crazy ladies who just TELLS people she is pregnant and convinces herself she is pregnant then isn't really. 

What do you think?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

My Tai.

Dear Tai,

Currently, you are sitting right inside mommy's ribs. Your dad keeps telling you to "knock it off" but you just wiggle at the sound of his voice. I don't think you understand english quite yet ;) You have so many clothes, little guy. Your dad brings them home from who knows where, he is constantly telling people about you, and then they give us their baby stuff. He keeps coming home with baby shoes, I don't think he understands that you won't really like wearing shoes. He displays every single pair on a little shelf, right next to a picture of you and a little pair of mittens. I try telling him that you won't even fit into half the shoes for a long time, but that doesn't really seem to phase him. Same as when he tells me about your Jiu Jitsu training, and the video games you will play together, and the tv shows you will like. I have to get him used to the idea that before you become a big tough guy, you are just gonna want to be a little cuddle bug. I think he's okay with that.

We went to our neighbors house the other night, they just had a little baby girl named Jenna. Your daddy held her in his arms and played with her little hands and she fell right asleep on his chest. He came home so excited to meet you, and we are both wondering what you will look like. I think you will end up looking just like him, and I hope you get his blue eyes. Your daddy says he wants you to look like me, and that he hopes you have the same temperament as me. Otherwise I am in for some trouble! Two boys always ganging up on mom, not fair!

I don't mind either way, your dad has such a good attitude about everything, it is a blessing. He is constantly opening the door to your room and peeking at your clothes. He always holds your little socks, and talks about you. In the middle of the night he will wake up and rub my tummy and talk to you, it's the first thing he does in the morning and the last thing he does at night. Everywhere we go he points out little babies, and tells people he is going to be a daddy soon. He is very territorial about you, he doesn't want anyone sleeping in your room or touching your stuff. I suggested we use your room as a guest room, and let you sleep in the living room, because your room doesn't have a heater and is so cold, but daddy did NOT like that idea. He brought home a space heater and then started making a space for you in our room just in case.

He has been working a lot lately, with his new jobs, which makes being home pretty lonely. Luckily you have a lot of strength and constantly remind me that you are there. We can even see my belly moving around when you move. Daddy is just waiting for my belly button to pop out, he thinks its the coolest thing and checks every single morning for "progress." Meanwhile, dad is helping me do almost everything. It's rough even to shift from one side to another, or to get up from bed. He laughs and says "wow you look pregnant today." He thinks that is a great compliment.

We can't wait to meet you little guy, only 10 weeks to go. Daddy says you will come early, he just knows it. That worries me because everything he predicts about you comes true! So you prove him wrong, just this once and stay inside and grow. We love you and want you to stay healthy. But mom sure can't wait for her cuddle bug, and dad already feels left out :)

Love you baby boy.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Your Hair Is Turning Blue? Oh That's NORMAL.

I. Have. Been. So. Sick.
No Bueno.

7 1/2 months pregnant, and I've had every pregnancy symptom under the sun. I feel like a crazy person.

Cravings? Chocolate Milk, Chocolate Ice Cream, Hot Chocolate.
                Apple Juice, Apple's, Apple Sauce

I've literally have been in the doctors twice a week for the last 7 months. Every single thing that happens is somehow a pregnancy symptom, and "normal."

People. I've been diagnosed with everything from lactose intolerance, gluten allergies, acid reflux, anemia, iron deficiencies, liver failure, Urinary Tract Infections, Kidney Infections, Kidney Stones, nausea, heart palpitations, diabetes.


Our doctor gave me a new prescription for something every single time we went in, which is scary for a pregnant woman who won't even take Tylenol. He would give me a medicine that would stop my nausea, but would cause constipation, then something that would fix the constipation but cause stomach pains, then something that numbed stomach pain but would probably make me sleep a lot. You get the picture. Basically I would leave the doctors irritated, crumple up another prescription and go back to being miserable, because I was not about to take 11 different pills a day. No exaggeration.

I didn't gain weight for the first 6 months, I lost fat and gained baby. (Which isn't that bad I suppose?) I slept most of the day, everyday, getting woken up by Colton trying to get food in my stomach. I didn't hold down most any food at all. It got to the point where Colton was so used to me throwing up that he could eat a burrito while holding my hair WHILE I vomited. Man of the year? I think so.

Let's just say, that between the nausea, heartburn, body aches and exhaustion, I am READY for this little boy to get here. His dad is constantly saying "Tai, be nice to mom." If only.

In other news, for anyone who has said, "I must be out of the loop" or "I had no idea you were pregnant." You were not alone. I live 250 miles away, I am barely showing even at 7 months, and while Colton likes to tell every random person we meet (because he is a very very very proud daddy) I have tended to keep it quiet.

I love my son, but going through something like this is really hard. It makes you feel like everyone is judging, talking, disappointed. It's heartbreaking. So I apologize that everyone is finding out now. Honestly it was only with the nudge of Colton, that I even said anything. And he is right. He said to me one night "This baby isn't a mistake, sweetie. He's a surprise. But not a mistake." And as fun as it would have been to post baby pictures come January, I need a little mom support :)


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Life Since I Became We.

Colton moved to Cedar City in August. I spent most of the summer in Heber with my family, and my lease wasn't up until August, so that's when he made the move.

It was hard at first. He really, really, REALLY, didn't want to leave Salt Lake. He was just about to start school again, was registered for classes, had a great job, a good schedule and a routine. He begged me to move to Salt Lake. Closer to family, closer to him, closer to everything he knew and loved.

But I couldn't do it. I am so close to getting my Bachelors degree, had a full time job that let me take off time when I wasn't sick (which would be hard to replace while pregnant regardless) and above all that, it is cheaper to live in Cedar. WAY cheaper.

We are talking $300 in rent for a studio apartment vs $600+ in Salt Lake. 

So Colton made the change. He packed up his life in two weeks, quit his job, and we started our life together. 

Originally, Colton started work at Convergys. It's a call center for AT&T that takes inbound calls and pays decently, and he could start right away. This was tough for Colton, who is a natural people person and thrives working with people, especially those with disabilities. He went from an atmosphere where people cared about him, missed him, talked to him and depended on him, to one where he felt taken for granted, stressed out and under-appreciated. There was constant pressure to say things perfect, do things perfect, make sales o r lose your job. He couldn't do it.

I was so terrified about him quitting his job, because I have been sick so much that the idea of him not working for any amount of time meant rough times ahead. I had heard horror stories of people looking and looking and looking for jobs and never being able to find anything in Cedar. But, everyday was miserable for Colt. He dreaded work, came home ornery, left stressed out. I knew it wouldn't last.

So we started applying online. Lots and lots of applications.
And we got results! Within 24 hours he had 4 job interviews! People who say the economy makes it impossible to find a job, need to look harder. 

His first interview was with a quadriplegic teenager who needed a care taker at night. Right up Colton's ally. He interviewed with the family, and was informed that they had interviewed a lot of nurses and CNA's. Colton has worked in the healthcare industry for several years, and dealt with disability his whole life (his little sister has Cerebral Palsy) but is not certified. He came home bummed out.

The second interview was with another disabled living home. They interviewed him, took his resume and then had him to a page of fractions and decimal math problems.


He came home after that bummed also, because lets be honest, most of us can't remember that crap. 

Third interview came along, for a place called Chrysalis, another disabled living assistance home. They hired him on the spot because of his experience. He started immediately. We were ecstatic.

That night, he got a call from his first interviewer, asking if he would like the position working with her son! We were shocked! She told him that despite having interviewed people with MUCH higher qualifications, they felt he was the right fit, and she would personally train him to do the job. Her son and Colton have a lot in common, and he personally requested to have Colton help him. It was only about 20 hours a week, but would be a great second job. 

It was a great day! Colton quit Convergys, with a huge smile, and a sigh of relief.

And then life happened. Again.

Colton went to his first day of training with Chrysalis, sat for three hours learning about the job, and then got called out. The hiring manager said that he had more than two moving violations (speeding tickets) on his record and would not be allowed to work there. 

First of all, why would they not check that BEFORE they hired him on? Second, he had been driving disabled residents in a van with no accidents for a year in his previous job, and had not had a ticket in over a year.

Awesome. Needless to say, he came home several hours early, looking like a lost puppy, feeling like he failed. Sometimes life is so not fair. I cried. A lot. Tried to comfort my man. And then with only a small job, and no Convergys to lean on, we moved on.

The next day we got a call from Walgreens, who was hiring for a position in the photo department. 7:30-3:30 PM (a shift Colton LOVES.) He went in for an interview immediately, and was crossing his fingers for results. The next morning I woke up with HORRIBLE pain in my hands, yet another pregnancy symptom. Colton offered to go to the store and pick up some medical tape so we could wrap my hands. It was early in the morning, but he got dressed up nicely, and we headed to the store. Walgreens to be exact.

We picked up the medical tape and then Colton waived to someone in the back room. The person who interviewed him. The guy came out, introduced himself, said "you must be Colton's fiance, how are you feeling?" I told him about the woes of pregnancy, and he laughed because his wife had just had a baby and he totally understood. We left Walgreens and continued running errands.

Within 10 minutes we got a call. Apparently that chance meeting had confirmed in the hiring managers mind the fact that he wanted to hire Colton. He related to being a new dad, and asked him to come in immediately and start getting work together. 

Deep sigh of relief.

We feel really blessed to have him working two jobs. His hours are good, the pay is good, and it allows him to go to the gym at night and train, something he had given up while working at Convergys. He also gets to spend the evenings with me, and soon, Tai.

So I'm missing my man a lot, and hating him working graves, but I know we are so so lucky. I'm lucky to have such a hard worker.

On The Subject Of Marriage.

If you think trying to get engaged is hard. Have a baby first.

You will hear everyone's opinion, story, thought and advice.
"Just get married now."
"Don't get married until after baby is here."
"It makes things easier."
"It makes things so much harder."

People are always telling me that I am going to feel like I missed out on life, or didn't get the opportunities I wanted. I agree, maybe timing wasn't perfect. But i'm 21 years old. There's so many girls my age, who I went to school with, that are married, with kids, on purpose.

The way I see it, it's scandalous regardless.  Scandal if we do, scandal if we don't.
Colton has made it very clear that we can go into a courthouse and sign a piece of paper if a title is what makes me happy. It's not. Who wants that?

So i'm going to plan my dream wedding.
Because that's the one thing I do not want to feel like I missed out on.
And we are going to wait.

Why would I stress myself out even more trying to plan a wedding, with a huge belly and pregnancy sickness to boot? 
It's not like i'm a full time student. 
With a full time job. 
Preparing for a newborn.
Adjusting to living with another person.

Let's just add a wedding to make people happy.

The fact is, we already know we love each other. A lot. 
We made the decision to be a family.

Colton comes home to me every night. 
He gives me his paychecks to put towards whatever bills we need paid.
We make all financial decisions together.
Share a lease on an apartment.
He washes my underwear, I fix his bills.
Whatever problems/difficulties arise, we are in it Together.

We already feel married. He introduces me as his Fiance.
So where is the ring?

That's the thing about sharing a life. The surprise is taken out of everything.
If he stops at the flower store, buys a red box and a pizza. I already know it before he gets home. 
Try buying a ring.

Needless to say, we are saving up for one, but putting the baby first.
But let's just say, I am excited for the Holidays ;)

We want to get married after Tai is born, and my body (and sleep) is recovered.
We both know we are going to have a hard time leaving our sweet boy home with grandma for a honeymoon.
But we are glad he will get to share our day with us.  
      In his cute little tux :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

MaTai Allen Kynaston

That is my son's name.
Holy crap.

Colton loved the name Tai. Which means "big." I wanted my son to have a more formal name. So we came up with Ma'Tai. It means "gift from god" and is the Polynesian name for Matthew. It is also the title for Polynesian royalty. This all fit together, as my brother is in Samoa on a mission, my family is Polynesian, and he is carrying the name of my very best friend, Matthew Watts. Tai's middle name is Allen, which is passed down the Kynaston line several generations. Since Colton is the end of the Kynaston line, we got stuck with it :)

Let me just tell you. From day 1, Colton has been super dad.

He is at every appointment. "...She also throws up a lot."
He asks all the questions. "She is craving chocolate..and apples. Is this normal?"
He reads all the baby books, "The book says that you should eat breakfast in bed, so I made you bacon."
He buys the stretch mark lotions, pregnancy pillows and baby books.
And he makes all the decisions. Friend: "Are you guys having a shower?"
Me: "Well I don't..."
Colton: "Yes we are, and our babies colors are green and black."

(Our baby has colors?)

When we went to find out the sex of the baby, he played angry birds in the room. He called baby a "he" from the beginning, barely glancing or reacting to the ultrasound technicians announcement that it was a boy. She zoomed up on the babys legs and Colton said "told ya, that's a weiner." He also took the photos off of our fridge, calling them "an embarrassment to Tai."

In fact he called him Tai before we even knew if he was a boy.

So pretty much I was out of luck. This is HIS son. "I will raise him myself if you don't want to join me."

Like I said, he is super dad.

And Tai loves him. He kicks whenever he hears his dad's voice. Something Colton soaks up, and tortures me with at 2 am. He pokes my stomach, Tai pokes him back. I am in for it.

He also has Tae Kwon Do lessons pre-scheduled, "first i'll teach him how to kick. He is already good at it. That way he can defend his little sister."

Yup. Super dad now predicts the future.

Either way I am super grateful for him. Super grateful that he loves his son so much. Super thankful for his sacrifices, for working two jobs so I can stay home and rest, for making me three meals a day and letting me have all six pillows and the window open when it's snowing.

He is a great man.

Grateful. Seriously Grateful.

I grew up in an LDS family. I knew wrong from right. I knew what was expected of me.I was always the easy child. I came home two hours before curfew, preferred being at home to going out, and always kept track of my own life. Scholarship, jobs, housing, rent. From the moment I graduated I was on top of it. I made it through my associates degree on a full ride academic scholarship, housing scholarship, leadership scholarship and pageant scholarships. I literally got paid to go to school.

I had started dating Colton in March of 2009, when I was a freshman in college. He was a little rough around the edges. A non-member music major (which I rank right up there with Art majors as a "what the hell can you do with that major", majors) with a couple tattoos, a love of death metal, MMA, and electric guitar. He was a great friend to me, we talked a lot. And then love happened. Oh Crap.

This goes back to what they tell you in Sunday School. You marry who you date. Best advice I could ever give. You don't fall for a guy, realize he can't take you to the temple and then dump him. Not easily at least. If you do end it for religion, its hard as HELL. If you don't, it's hard as HELL. Not when you are head over heels. That is the biggest heartbreak you can go through. You either don't start, or you finish differently then you ever planned. That's the only thing you can plan on.

Long story short, when you love someone, and you are LDS, and you know they can't take you to the temple, its tough. You end up dating, and dating, and dating...and never going anywhere because the pressure to do it "the right way" is too hard. And then you end up screwing up even more.

And then babies happen. :)

When I told my parents I was pregnant, my little brother had just left on a mission to Samoa. We are talking a few DAYS before. My dad especially was really missing him, and was already going through a hard time. So this little number was definitely a land mine.

A big one.

It was a lot to deal with. But my parents were amazing through it all. My mom was amazingly supportive, making doctors appointments and making sure I was eating right. My dad took...awhile. But never made me feel like he was angry at me. He just was quiet, and thoughtful. He was scared to death of the what if's. He is finally starting to come around, mostly because he has seen how supportive and dedicated Colton is to his son, and to me. We are really, really blessed.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Our Little Boy Blue is due January 28th, 2012. 4 months. 122 days. Wait, what?
This little guy is already our everything, and he hasn't even made his entrance.
And yes, it will be an entrance, look at his parents. 

Let me back up. From the day we are old enough to comprehend, we understand that there is an ORDER to life. A way it  has to be lived.

Kindergarten. Elementary School. Middle School. High School. College. Job. Dating. Engaged. Married. BABY.

We are just doing things a little differently. Life threw us a curve ball, and we took five really quick steps forward. Really quick. 

Welcome to Relocating, Job Hunting, Apartment Searching and Furniture Buying.
Maternity Pants, Changing Stations and Tiny Baby Shoes.

Here's a shout out to my sweetheart Colton. Who in two weeks packed up his life, quit a job he loved, left his friends, his family, his MMA gym and his whole life and moved four hours away to be with "the family he made." Who single handedly packed up his entire belongings, and mine, and moved them into a little studio apartment, all while turning the air conditioning off and on according to my pregnant crazy needs.

 "If i'm hot, I take clothes off. If she is hot, the air conditioning goes on.
If i'm cold. I put more clothes on. If she's cold, the heater is on."
-Colton (explaining the order of life in our house)