Grieving

The smell of a specific perfume, or the noise of a powerful laugh; the thought of a memory that happened many years ago, yet feels like was only within a few moments. The thought of missing someone so heavily that all of time stops, and your entire body grows cold.

This is grief.

I recently had a dream that my grandparents came over to my home. They were over the moon and all smiles about my son. They snuggled with him, played with him and laughed so deeply that it shook the house. They were honored to be great grandparents. They were in love with my son.

Then I woke up.

I woke up and remembered my Grandma and Grandpa were gone. Both had been gone for a few years now. One died from Alzheimer’s and the other from cancer. I remembered they were no longer apart of this life. They never got to be great grandparents and they never got to meet their great grandson.

This is when grief returns.

There are moments, I look at my son and I just can’t believe he’s mine. He’s a perfect mix of both his father and I. I can’t help but think of his siblings, the babies we had before him that we never got to meet.

Grief hits hard.

Last year when I was pregnant for my son, my best friend was pregnant with her daughter. My best friend lost her baby before 21 weeks. It was painful. It was excruciating and it wasn’t fair.

Grief has defining moments.

My senior year of high school, a girl I knew from youth group drowned. At the time I could hardly fathom someone around my age dying. How could it be? She had so much life to live and so much love to give. Why?

Grief is apart life.

Without death there is no life. Without life there is no love. With love comes risk. We risk loving someone even though we know we could lose them. Love is more than a feeling, yet with it sometimes comes loss which can be excruciating. If we don’t love we don’t live. And if we don’t live then, what’s the point?

Grief is a reminder.

As hard as it is to grieve, it reminds us of what we had. It reminds us of the good in our lives, the relationships and the memories. By grieving we aren’t forgetting those we love, we are remembering and we are honoring those gone, usually way too soon.

We grieve because we love. ❤️

My Summer 2022 Bucket List Check In!

I probably say this every year, but how on earth is it July??? Not only this summer, but this entire year is flying by! Anyway, here’s a quick check in of my goals and how I’m doing. 😊

MY SUMMER 2022 BUCKET LIST
  1. Grow a Garden and produce fruits, veggies and spices.

So, since we are currently staying with family, we haven’t quite got the plants in the ground yet… but we do have plants. Does that count? We have a little bit of an over population with the bunnies that we need to figure out before we try growing our fruits, veggies and spices.

2. Go on some sort of family adventure (the zoo, the beach, the park, garage sailing, tulip festival etc.)

This summer has already been so hot, that I have been hesitant about taking our son out as I don’t want him to get dehydrated. I’m hoping it can cool down soon and we can find something fun to do.

3. Establish a more consistent daytime routine for my Baby (Naps, feedings, playtime, tummy time, etc.)

Umm… yes and no. Every time I think we are starting to have a schedule, something always changes. I have discovered within the last few weeks that I have to limit Matthew’s naps. I also have to make sure his last nap isn’t too late in the day, otherwise he does not sleep well at night.

4. Publish my Memoir

I’m working on it okay. Writing and self publishing a book is hard.

5. Start a weekly Yoga Routine

Let’s not go there.

6. Finish Knitting Charles Sweater

It’s been a little too hot to knit these days.

7. Finish Reading the Entire Bible

Currently working on Isaiah, and hoping to start another book soon.

8. Reorganize my Bathroom

My bathroom isn’t really mine at the moment, since I’m sharing it with other people, so this goal is on hold for now.

9. Commit to going on Family Walks at least once a week,

Again it’s been too hot. But we have gone a few times, just not every week.

10. Create some New Recipes

I haven’t really had a chance to cook since moving, but I am hoping to do this very soon.

11. Introduce solid foods to my Baby ✔️

This has been a huge hit in our house. We have been trying solid foods since 4.5 months and so far Matthew has tried bananas, apples, prunes, peas, carrots, chicken, peaches, pears, cereal and butternut squash. We are hoping to try avocado and sweet potato next.

12. Start teaching Baby Sign Language in our Home. ✔️

Since starting on solids, we have also been teaching baby sign language. The signs we’ve used so far include milk, more and all done. Matthew hasn’t signed any of these back to us quite yet, but soon enough I’m sure he will.

13. Spend more time with my Family and Friends ✔️

As we’ve been staying with family, I have been able to spend more time with family and friends. ❤️

14. Do Art Projects with my Baby ✔️

Let me tell you, this has been an adventure. So far we had done foot print crafts for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. Let’s just say Momma wore a lot of blue paint. I think Matthew had fun though.

15. Reach 425 Written Blog Posts

I’m still in the 300’s as far as blog posts but we’ll get there.


3 out of 15 goals met. That’s a pretty good start!

The Last 7 Years…

Since my son was born, I have found myself going through a lot of old photos. My intention of this was really just to see how much my son ended up looking like me. But as I’ve perused different photos, I found myself going down memory lane, and really thinking back to the last 7 years and the experiences that have helped mold me as the person I am today.

In September of 2014, I met an 18 year old boy in Spanish class. He was kind, polite and a little nosey. I didn’t know it then that he would one day be my husband. ❤️

I didn’t intend to meet my future husband in Spanish class. I actually signed up for the class so I could prepare for a mission trip to the Dominican Republic in February of 2015. This trip changed my life. I learned how to be grateful for the things I have, like an indoor shower, a floor and air conditioning. I also grew more in love with helping others and teaching children. 🖍

In the fall of 2016, I became a lead preschool teacher for 3 year olds. I graduated from community college in the Spring of 2016 and instead of heading straight to a university, I decided to take a gap year and gain some experience in my field. It was wonderfully challenging to say the least. Everyday was an adventure. From potty training, to positive child guidance, to sickness, to coloring on the wall, to giggle fits, to Disney dance parties; it was enjoyable and one of the best years of my life.

While planning my classroom that fall I also planned my wedding. Talk about a lot on your plate all at once. Charles proposed in August and we got married in mid November. A beautiful fall wedding that wonderfully captured our love for God and love for each other. 💒

In Spring of 2018, I decided to go back to school to further my education. I had already received an Associates in Early Childhood Education and an Associates in General Studies at community college. My next step was to a university for a Bachelors in Child and Family Development.

While studying for my Bachelors, I hit a little bump in the road and got pregnant. Though it wasn’t planned, we were excited and ready to venture into parenting. Sadly our first pregnancy came to an end at 11 weeks.

After my first miscarriage, I started writing my blog, and sharing my story to cope with my grief and help others. I had the opportunity to get published in a magazine, and start a blogging platform on WordPress and Instagram.

After my second miscarriage, I got involved in advocacy work on my college campus. Even though I didn’t agree with everything that was taught, I did learn the fundamentals of what it means to be an advocate, overcoming trauma and standing up for what you believe in

After many twists and turns, I finally graduated with my Bachelors in Child and Family Development. I may have graduated in a pandemic, which certainly wasn’t planned, but I was able to finish my education and start my new career.

Shortly after graduating and getting back into my field of teaching and child care, I decided to work on a new project. I wrote and illustrated a children’s book about miscarriage and grief.

In August of 2020, my mothering heart was longing for a baby. And though we had decided to hold off trying for a baby, we decided to try adopting and caring for a kitten. We went to a local cat cafe where we met Breadstick. This little 4 month old kitten worked his way into our laps and our hearts. We adopted him on a Friday afternoon, renamed him Rocky, and the rest is history.

On Mother’s Day of 2020, my husband and I decided to try again one more time. We prayed and hoped and waited for a baby. Our trying to conceive journey lasted a year and was full of ups and downs, negative test after test until finally we got out positive.

Pregnancy after suffering two losses was not easy. I worried constantly about the unknown, the past and things I couldn’t control. Thankfully with faith, prayer and encouragement I learned to be thankful for pregnancy and appreciate each moment as it came.

During my pregnancy, I mentally and emotionally prepared for my upcoming roll of motherhood. I leaned on other mom friends as well as my mom as I prepared for the journey ahead.

Giving birth was one of the most life changing experiences of my life. No things did not go as planned as I did not plan on being induced or being in labor for 3 days. But with the support of Jesus, family, friends and my medical team… I realized what my body was capable of and I had the strength to give birth to my beautiful miracle baby.

On January 2nd I became a mom, a mom earth-side that is. I’m not just a mom, but I’m a mom to two angel babies as well as one pretty incredible rainbow baby.


These last 7 years have been amazing, stressful, exhausting, entertaining, relaxing, memorable, wonderful, hilarious, beautiful and challenging. I love my life. It is exactly like and nothing like I had pictured. As a 19 year old girl, taking classes at a community college, to a new mom, with an education in children… I have to say, so far my life has turned out pretty great.

My Summer 2022 Bucket List

Another Summer, means another Bucket List! This summer is going to be interesting having a mobile infant around. I’m excited to see the many adventures and activities we’ll have together as a family 🙂

My Summer 2022 Bucket List
  1. Grow a Garden and produce fruits, veggies and spices.
  2. Go on some sort of family adventure (the zoo, the beach, the park, garage sailing, tulip festival etc.)
  3. Establish a more consistent daytime routine for my Baby (Naps, feedings, playtime, tummy time, etc.)
  4. Publish my Memoir ❤️
  5. Start a weekly Yoga Routine
  6. Finish Knitting Charles Sweater
  7. Finish Reading the Entire Bible
  8. Reorganize my Bathroom
  9. Commit to going on Family Walks at least once a week,
  10. Create some New Recipes
  11. Introduce solid foods to my Baby
  12. Start teaching Baby Sign Language in our Home.
  13. Spend more time with my Family and Friends
  14. Do Art Projects with my Baby
  15. Reach 425 Written Blog Posts

This Summer is going to be fun! I can’t wait!!! ☀️

10 Layer Salad Recipe

I love Salad! It’s just one of those foods that makes me feel good when I eat it. I love putting a lot of ingredients in my salad. When I’m craving salad, I usually search my kitchen pantry and fridge to see what ingredients I have that would go great in salad.

Recently I made something I call a 10 layer salad, as I layered my salad with 10 different ingredients. Here is what you’ll need for this recipe:

Ingredients

  • Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Green Olives
  • Black Olives
  • Tomatoes
  • Onion
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Roasted Chickpeas
  • Ranch Dressing

And literally all you do is add one ingredient at a time, creating layers in a large bowl. For example I did lettuce, tomato, onion, cucumbers, carrots, green olives, black olives, shredded cheese, roasted chickpeas and Ranch dressing. And that’s it!!! Such a perfect dish for any summer occasion.


If you are wondering how to roast chickpeas, check out my other blog post: Roasted Chickpea Recipe.

Kid’s Corner: Paper Plate Ice Skating

Do you have some busy bees in your home who seem to constantly be on the move? Do you feel like the walls are closing in when it’s raining or too cold to send the kids outside? Do you ever run out of ideas of indoor activities to try with your kids?

Well, here is a simple idea that your kids will love! This activity is perfect for kids ages 2-5! All you need is these two around the house items: Paper Plates and Markers.

First, give your child two paper plates. Explain to them that you are going to create ice skates! Provide your child with markers to decorate the plates. You can even include other art supplies such as stickers, paint, glitter glue, etc.

Once your child has finished decorating their skates (paper plates), then place the plates on the floor. Demonstrate for your child how to step and slide on the carpet while remaining on the paper plates.

Once your child has mastered sliding across the room while using their ice skates, throw on some music and let them go to town!

Feeling a Little Extra Thankful This Year 🍂

We are feeling a little extra thankful this year! I thank God for my family and friends, my job, my kitty, my health, a roof over my head, clothes on my back, our little bun in the oven and so much more! ❤️

This year we decided to change our Thanksgiving menu a little and have a porterhouse steak instead of turkey!

We also stuck with some classics, including crescent rolls and gravy.

Charcuterie board

Of course, my holiday staple Bruschetta

Homemade mashed potatoes

Stuffing and corn

Green bean casserole

Veggies and hummus

… and cranberry sauce.

I hope you and yours have a Happy Thanksgiving! 🍂

Reblog: Things to Say and Do After a Woman Has Had a Miscarriage

This month is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. As many of you know I have experienced two losses and now our Rainbow Baby is on the way. Because of this I would like to share some resources I created at the time I was going through my losses in 2019.

1. THE BEST THINGS YOU CAN SAY IS “I LOVE YOU, I’M HERE FOR YOU, AND I’M SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS”

Wouldn’t you agree that after someone dies, there’s not really much of anything that people can say to take the pain away. Even though people don’t like to see you hurt, they also don’t know what to say. And when it comes to experiencing a miscarriage, people really don’t know what to say. They can see your grieving, but they don’t feel the loss nearly as deeply because they didn’t meet or have a bond with the life that was once inside you. Unfortunately, our society does not know how to treat miscarriage as a loss or death.

When I was grieving and at my worst, people didn’t know what to say to me either. There were people who said a lot of the wrong things, and there were a lot of people who just left me alone. But the best things people said to me that were not hurtful, did not offer unsolicited advice, and were sensitive were: “I love you, I’m here for you, I’m sorry for your loss, if you ever want to talk let me know, I’m thinking about you and I’m praying for you.”

2. OFFERING TO CLEAN, COOK AND RUN ERRANDS.

You know how when someone dies, people make you food? Well, I really appreciated this. I don’t know why food is such a comfort, but it is. It seems that when people don’t know what to say they make food. I had a neighbor make dinner for my husband and I, a yummy dish from the Dominican… it was amazing. Our associate pastor and his wife made us chicken, green beans and potatoes…. so good. My sister in law, who worked all day invited us over and made us a feast! Bless her heart. And my Momma provided me with lots of comfort food when I was recovering from surgery. Food doesn’t make everything better, but in that moment of grief when you need something to numb it for awhile, food helps.

3. PAMPERING THE ANGEL MOMMY

Being pampered by friends and family helped me in many ways. My momma bought me a massage right before Mother’s Day. I had no idea how badly I needed it, until my tears and emotions came out all over the table. My husband went out and bought me chicken wings at midnight when I was having a really emotional night and couldn’t sleep. My bestie Alli came over in the middle of the night and we drove all over town eating Oreos. So many people did kind things for me, when I needed it most, I highly recommend this. Of course I also would recommend proceeding with caution and sensitivity.

4. PROVIDING SPACE TO THE GRIEVING COUPLE

I feel this is super important. The Momma is not the only one that experiences a pregnancy loss. Sure, she is the only one that experiences the physical pain of loss, but it’s also important to remember that father’s grieve too. I know of many men, my husband included who not only struggle to help their wives grieve, but also felt somewhat disregarded when it came to their grief and emotions. So, it is super important to allow the grieving couple time and space. Even recommending a getaway could be beneficial… but again proceed with caution.

5. CHECK IN

Hearing the worst news, that your baby is gone is heartbreaking. It honestly numbs you. Looking back now, I barely remember the time in between my ultrasound and my surgery, and the whole month of March is a blur. I do remember laying in bed a lot, eating occasionally, crying until my head hurt and listening to sad music. I also remember having people check in. It’s something I would have never asked for, but truly appreciated. I had friends and family call and text me daily just to check in and make sure I was alive. So many of them opened the doors for communication and gave encouraging words to my tender broken heart. I highly recommend checking in on a friend or loved one if they have suffered a loss. It’s not much, but also not to pushy. Even if they don’t respond it is still nice that people care for you when you are feeling so alone, Sure, there were many times I didn’t want to talk, but I still loved that so many people cared. ❤️

6. BE SENSITIVE WITH YOUR WORDS

This is a big one… and I can’t stress this enough. Please be very careful with your words. After suffering a loss your mind and your heart are in a truly fragile state. It is likely that the grieving mother is heart broken, constantly blaming herself and hating life. So, it is truly important not to contribute to these emotions of anger and sorrow by saying things like “You’re young you’ll have more, or You shouldn’t have stressed yourself out so much, or at least you already have a baby.”

7. HONORING THEIR LOSS

Above anything else I’ve said, I think this is actually the most important. One of the biggest fears that I and so many moms have, is that the child they have lost will be forgotten, as if that little life that lived in them had never existed. It means the world to me when friends and family talk about my baby. It may make me sad and weepy, but also makes me feel loved and my baby never forgotten. I really appreciate it when friends and family are sensitive and saying they are thinking of me on holidays and anniversaries, because they know it’s not going to be an easy day for me. Showing love and honoring the baby’s memory is literally the best thing you can do to help a woman after a miscarriage.


I am not an expert or doctor in anyway, just a woman, a writer and a woman who has lost a baby. I hope these little pieces of advice help in some way. If you are reading this and you have suffered an unimaginable lost, I just want to say I’m so sorry for your loss, reach out to me anytime.

Sequential Screening During the 12th Week of Pregnancy

At my last OB apptiiontment with a midwife, I was offered some optional prenatal testing called sequential screening. The tests looks for various genetic abnormalities including Down Syndrome, Cystic Fibrous, Spina Bifida and more. The test is done by looking and measuring baby through ultrasound as well as testing for different hormones through a mother’s blood draw.

I considered this test when it was first offered to me, and decided to do it for two reasons. 1) because of my history with miscarriages I wanted to know all I could about baby. and 2) with the family history of my brother dying as an infant I knew I could be higher risk for different genetic abnormalities.

On the day of the test, I was a bundle of nerves, as I always am. I went to work that morning as normal as possible. Teaching preschoolers was a good distraction for most of the day. However, as the time drew closer and closer to the test, my fears and worries started to creep up on me.

I confided in many of my coworkers, and they encouraged me and sent me many positive vibes before leaving for my test. The funny thing is, at the time I wasn’t even concerned about the results of the test or any genetic disorders that may be found. I was actually scared of the actual ultrasound. We all know how ultrasounds give me anxiety since my last two losses. I was more concerned that I had lost baby and didn’t even know it. What if baby’s heart stopped beating? What if baby stopped growing? In between work and my test I also confided in my family and friends, read my bible and did some deep breathing.

Charles and I headed to our appointment. I prayed and talked to him the entire time. Charles reassured me that everything would be just fine. When we arrived, we were called back immediately and shown the ultrasound room. Before laying down and preparing for the heated jelly, I confided in the tech and told her I was very nervous.

I laid down and prepared for the worst but hoped for the best. The tech turned on the screen, asked me some questions and began the exam. I held my breath and watched as she looked for baby. She said “There’s baby, and there’s the heartbeat.” I sighed with relief and thanked Jesus. The tech measured baby’s heart rate and it was 163. Perfect. She then started to take images of baby’s heart, stomach, head, and spine.

Baby made little movements here and there but actually looked like he or she was sleeping. The tech still had a few more images to take. She tried nudging baby with the probe and getting baby to turn or roll over… that didn’t work. She then thought she’d take a moment to look at my ovaries then come back to baby. She continued nudging baby with the probe, asking me to roll to my left then roll to my right then flat on my back. She asked me to roll quickly and roll slowly. She asked me to walk around, do some stretching, and anything to get baby to try and move.

As the tech tried nudging baby again, baby turned it’s head and looked at us. It was hilarious and obviously trying to tease the tech. Then baby started waving it’s arms and tried sucking it’s thumb. Baby even put one hand on its forehead, as if feeling irritated and trying to be dramatic. Baby was just stubborn and really wanted to nap. I told the tech during the appointment that this time of day after work is normally my nap time, so it’s understandable why baby wants to take a nap. Eventually, baby cooperated enough to where we were able to get all the photos needed for the test.

After the test I was given a bunch of pictures of our photogenic baby and sent to the lab for some blood work. I was told all of my scans and blood work would be sent to the Mayo Clinic and I would receive results from them within a week or two.

When it was time to go home, all I could do was stare in awe over baby. So many pictures. I got to see baby move and I got to see baby’s heartbeat. Charles actually enjoyed himself too because baby was starting to look like a baby! I shared the good news with my family and friends. They were excited, relieved and so happy for us.

I even shared this little update on my Facebook page as I truly want to not only share in my pregnancy with others, but also share the struggle of pregnancy after loss. I wrote:

It’s funny, now that writing is my hobby, I’m usually really good at explaining what I’m trying to say. But today, I’m at a loss for words. I guess I’ll try and speak from my heart, and maybe just maybe it will make sense.
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I’m going to be completely honest, pregnancy after loss is freaking scary. Sometimes I lay awake at night worried, and over analyzing my symptoms hoping and praying baby is okay. Other times, I am happy, I am at peace and I am content.
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Today, I didn’t know what I was feeling. I was hoping and praying for the best, but truthfully planning for the worse. When you’ve gone through loss you know what the heartbreak feels like and you remember the never ending grief, and in someways you never really escape it.
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This afternoon we had a special appointment. I walked into the room holding my breath and giving it to Jesus. The minute I heard the tech say “there’s the heartbeat.” I knew it was all okay.
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Baby is happy, healthy and stubborn! Heart rate was 163. And I’m measuring a few days early so we are already at 13 weeks! I don’t think I could have asked for better news even if I tried! Baby is okay. We are overwhelmed with joy and feeling so blessed!

Post Written 7/2/21

Our Big Announcement!

On June 18th, 2021 Charles and I decided to do it. We decided to announce our pregnancy and make it public. It was exciting, nerve racking, scary and wonderful.

I put together our message board and it read… For this baby we have prayed, our rainbow is due in January 2022.

We received an abundance of congratulations, well wishes and prayers.

Post Written: 6/22/21

5 Weeks Pregnant! (Third Pregnancy/ First Trimester)

I’m officially 5 weeks and baby is the size of an Appleseed!

Pregnancy symptoms include: sore breasts, nausea when I have an empty stomach, headaches, slight cramping, and major fatigue!

At this point in time only 3 people know, Charles, Andrea and my coworker Deja.

My first prenatal appointment is scheduled for next week!

So far, things are going well, and I am excited to see what the weeks ahead bring. 🙂

Post written 5/6/21

Reblog: Deep Fried Oreo Recipe

Hi friends! I thought I would reshare my Deep Fried Oreo Recipe because they are so dang good!

WHAT YOU NEED 

Oreos (I used Oreo Thins but regular Oreos will work too) 

Oil (olive oil, coconut oil or vegetable oil works) 

Pancake Mix (Any brand will do, I used about 2 cups) 

Vanilla Extract (1 tsp)

Egg (1)

Milk (1 cup, or as much as you need to make the batter smooth and thin).

Powdered Sugar (a couple tsp)

WHAT YOU DO

First, mix the pancake batter, vanilla extract, egg and milk into a medium size bowl. 

Next, place oil in a frying pan on a medium heat. Place enough oil to completely cover the bottom of the pan. 

Once oil is heated in the pan, take your Oreos and dip them into the pancake batter. Then place Oreos in oil. After about a minute, flip Oreo to cook other side. Continue this process until you have enough Oreos of your choice. 

Lastly, place Oreos on a plate and sprinkle some powdered sugar on top. 


Friends, I’m not going to sugar coat it 😂. These Oreos are yummy but super rich and unhealthy. So don’t eat them all in one setting. Enjoy!