Tuesday, April 30, 2013

7 month favorites

Raz-Berry Teether: Tracker loves this teether. It has a bumpy texture but is very soft. He loves to hold the ring part and pull it in and out of his mouth. We will put it in the freezer sometimes when we think his teeth are bothering him and it seems to help sooth those achy teeth.

Carters Sleeveless Onesie: These are my new favorite thing. The reason I love them is because they are sleeveless so when I layer it with other shirts its not super bulky and he doesn't get to hot. Plus they are carters and I love carter onesies. They hold up well wash after wash and seem to last longer size wise than any others I have.

Fresh Food Feeder: I like the fresh food feeder but Tracker LOVES it. I will stuff a banana, strawberry or even some chicken in this and Tracker and gum it to death. Beware it can make a huge mess when you have a messy baby like Tracker. He sucks and sucks everything he can and then he gets so excited he swings it around and smacks it on the try which then sends food flying. Its totally worth it though. It keeps him busy while I make dinner and I don't have to be consistently worried he is going to choke. The mesh net doesn't allow any chunks to come through.

Plastic Easter Eggs: Since this is a list of both mine and Trackers favorite things I had to include his most favorite toy this month. Since the day I got out all our Easter eggs he has been in egg heaven. They are the perfect size for his tiny chubby hand. We put random objects inside so they make noise when shakes them. He plays with them everywhere including the bath. They are perfect to float and made this last month extra Easter festive with a million eggs strew throughout the house.

EOS Lip Balm: This is for all the adults. Where has this been all my life? This is the absolute best lip balm ever. I have one on me at all times. Once you pick one up you will never let it go.

B. One Two Squeeze Blocks: I love all the B. products. Seriously the cutest toys ever. These blocks are so fun to stack and knock down. Tracker is all about throwing these across the room. 

Books with Sound: We love books and the older Tracker is getting the more he loves story time. I bought a couple of these books with sound and he cant get enough. He gets so excited he starts panting like a dog. Cutest thing ever. He will grab at the book and pushes the buttons I point to. He is at the perfect age to introduce these.

Monday, April 29, 2013

10 tips for selling your home.

We are in blown selling/moving mode.
Seriously it sucks to sell.
I cant believe how hard it is to keep my house show ready.
With a dog, a baby and a messy husband its near impossible. 
I feel like all I do is clean, vacuum, do dishes and hide laundry.

Maybe I shouldn't post these tips until after we actually sell but with a lot of research, with a stager coming through our place and with a great realtor we have learned some great tips and tricks to help when you put your house on the market and I wanted to make sure and share with all of you.

#1. DE-CLUTTER. I heard this over and over and just didn't realize how much you should really
de-clutter. I thought having a few cute decorations here and there was fine, hanging a picture on a big empty wall was necessary and leaving soap on the counter was fine. We were told to clean off your kitchen and bathroom counters completely. NOT even soap. Put it under the sink. We were told to take down all pictures. If someone comes through its harder for them to picture their family living there if your family is displayed everywhere. We had a picture of Jesus holding a baby in our hall and we were told to take that down because some people will be deterred from that. They don't all want a picture of Jesus in their home so they might think-- hmm I wouldn't fit into this house.
Tip: I put a basket under every sink to store all the items I use daily and also as a place to toss things when I'm quickly picking up. It looks neat and doesn't leave that space a giant mess.

#2. Dress up your entrance. We have our key box at the back door. We put it there because we had no other place to attach it. I dressed up the front of my house but didn't really think to dress up the back. Well when people come through they are standing at the door waiting for the realtor to open the key box and unlock the door. There is a lot of time for them to get a first impression. Get a new welcome mat, get a potted plant, sweep. Make it a welcoming area.

#3. Paint. I hate painting. Ryan hates painting so this was not something we wanted to do but it was necessary. Our basement was a dark grey. People want to walk into a home and have a clean slate. The majority of our house has neutral colors but the basement and our bedroom have some distinct colors/style. We painted the entire basement white. Its clean. Its fresh. It smell good and its a so much brighter. When we first moved into our house the paint was horrid. We were able to look past it and know we can paint ourselves but some people don't see past what is already there.

#4. Keep Clorox wipes in every room. Okay so maybe not every room but I keep one on every floor. Its great to grab and wipe down every surface, knob, light switch and wall at any given moment. I wash all mirrors and deep clean each room once a week but the wipes are so helpful to keep things up to par every other day.

#5. This might sound weird but make sure your toilets, microwave and fridge is clean. I never thought about these things as being that important but I have been told by several people that these are things that if clean will give a good impression and if dirty can totally deter someone.

#6. Vacuum often. I normally vacuum every other day because I hate pet hair but since we have put our house on the market I vacuum everyday. I think one of the best things to see is vacuum lines in the carpet. Always makes me feel my house is 100x cleaner.

#7. Create a getaway plan. I have a list of things I pick up, pack and ensure is taken care of before we leave the house. My check list includes:
- Pick up Harley's toys and food bowl and put in closet
- Sweep patio
- Turn on every single light and open all shades
- Put baby gear (high chair, bouncer, walker) in back of truck
- Put kitchen garbage can in closet
I go through this check list every time to ensure all these last minute things are done. Everything else I try to keep on top of throughout the day.
I also have things in the car for the dog and Tracker. Water, snacks, toys, blanket to sit on at the park, etc... That way I don't have to worry about grabbing all those little things when I'm running out of the house.

#8. Lights. Turn on every single light and open all window shades. Even if its the middle of the day. Your place will look bigger and brighter with everything open and lights on.

#9. Air Freshener. This one I have mixed reviews on. I have heard from some people to not have any air freshener because people will think you are trying to cover something up. Other people say to have some kind of sent that is like a baked good (cookies, bread, vanilla) I personally love the smell of clean. I use the Greenleaf Classic Linen spray everyday at home so I just continue what I always do with it. I think it just smells clean and is not over powering.

#10. Stage your place. I didn't really understand what this meant for a while. Staging means you stage your house to bring out all the best features, maximize the space and strategically put everything in a certain place. Many times people have to buy all new stuff when they are staging. That is so expensive. I did my best to just utilize everything we had. I moved a lot of stuff around, hung mirrors, brought in some greenery and bought some extra throw pillows. You can hire a professional stager. They really do give awesome tips that will be customized for your home. I think it was so worth having an outside person come through our home. We didn't do everything they suggested mainly because I didn't have the funds to buy  everything but we definitely listened and implemented the majority of what they suggested.

If you are selling-- Good Luck!! Put a link to your place or a place you know of in the comments. That's my bonus suggestion--- Use any situation to spread the word about your place. You never know who might be interested. Maybe by you linking your house on here, someone could be looking for just that exact place!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


... First off, thank you soo much for the sweet comments and support in my last post. I know how truly blessed I am to have Makenzie as my daughter and to have held and angel in my arms. I also know how incredibly lucky I am to now hold my Tracker. God has been so good to us and really has show so much love. Over the last 3 years since I have lost Makenzie one of the biggest things I have had to learn is the crazy wave of grief. The up and down is constant. The hard days come but then they go.
You do learn to live again. To smile. To breathe.
but no matter how long you are into the process you will forever have hard days and there will be many more firsts, many more triggers. and ill get through them.
Thank you for reminding me of so many things I have forgotten. You are all so sweet and such an amazing support system. Thank you for continuing to help me through this journey...


There is so much going on with us I don't even know where to start.
First off we are moving!
Ryan got a promotion at work and we are relocating to the Pasco Washington branch.
We are trying to sell our townhouse right now and hope to have it sold soon.
Ryan is in Washington working and I am home with the babe and the dog.
Thankfully Ryan's work is flying him home every weekend so we are not away from each other too much. I know how big this is for a company to do this and I am forever grateful they are bending over backward to help us during this transition. Tracker and I have come to Washington for a week to look for places and get lost while Ryan works during the day.

Tracker is 7 months old.
Seriously where is the time going?
I cant believe he is more than half way to 1.
He is so close to crawling. He gets so mad that he cant figure it out yet. He rolls all over like a pro. I have a hard time keeping up with how quick he can get around. Which terrifies me for when he actually can crawl/walk/run. He has the best personality and it comes out more and more. He is obsessed with his Dad and cant get enough of him. Although when he gets home at the end of the week he gives him the cold shoulder for the night. He wont smile, wont laugh and wont go to him. Its really sad actually but by the next day he is over it and wants nothing to do with me and only wants his Dad. 

Ryan is busy busy with his new job. He is doing amazing at it and catching on great. He is working long hours and not getting done until really late so I am hoping that doesn't last forever. Its already hard enough not to see him now but I am hoping when we are finally living in the same state I get to see him then. Ryan's main worry about moving was not being able to visit his family and go hunting so we already have a few trips planned so he can indulge in both.

I am great. Working from home. Trying to keep up with daily duties and take care of this adorable little man. I am nervous to move but anxious at the same time. I think it will be fun to have a new adventure but I don't know what I'm going to do without my sister down the street and the rest of our family just a phone call away. There will be many phone calls and skype sessions I am sure.

Although things are a bit crazy right now, we are so happy and so blessed.

Friday, April 12, 2013


This post might not make sense. It will most likely be all over the place. I just need to write.
It's been 7 months since the day tracker was born. 7 months of this new life. This life that has been simply amazing. How has it been so long since I lived that life? Being a mother with no living children? The mom who felt like I should be a mom but with no child to care for. That seemed like forever ago but so recent as well. My life being a Mum of a 7 month old son is incredible. How do I even describe it? Never would I ever expect to be this happy? Have this much love. Be this blessed? I am thankful everyday for Tracker. I tell God over and over how thankful I am for everything about him. I thank him for his eyes and ears and nose and smile and giggle and for the way he snuggled me today or the way he reaches for me. I thank him daily for it all. For giving me another day with him. and everyday I mean it more than the last day. Everyday I am more grateful.
and since the day Tracker was born I have felt guilty feeling anything but that. Gratitude. Because I feel like if I feel anything else he might take Tracker away. I feel like I have to almost walk on egg shells because if I show that I am the least bit ungrateful, impatient or sad that this will all end.
I don't know why I feel that way but I do.
I have had a really hard time understanding and managing my feelings about Makenzie.
We talk about her every single day. We say her name. We laugh about silly things she did. We ask Tracker questions about her. Everyday she is still in our home. In our life. In our family.
but everyday I also miss her like crazy. And many days I just want to curl up and beg for the world to stop spinning. To put everything on hold. and to just cry.
To miss her.
To miss her with my whole heart.
To ache for her.
To dream about her.
I feel like if I slow down or stop or surrender to those feelings ill miss out on the gift God has given me with Tracker. That ill not see something I should see. That he will think I'm taking Tracker for granted. That I'm not being a good enough mom.
So I push it away. I take a big sigh. I gulp down that giant lump in my throat and I get back to the beautiful life I have with my beautiful son.
Then it comes again. Over and over. and I don't know what to do. It seems to get harder and harder.
I want to scream it out. I want to yell. I want to curl up and let it all fall out in tears.
But I am petrified to do so. I just can't do it.
I let a little out.
But then feel overwhelming guilt and stop myself.
Everyday I look at Tracker and marvel at the child that is in front of me. and then she comes into my head.
and so does the missing. the memories. the realization that she is gone. the images of her casket. her grave. they are all in the front of my mind but I feel if I let them out ill get in trouble or something.
That God will be mad. That I'm being a selfish brat. That he has given me a new and healthy baby so I should be fine. Right?
Every picture I take of Tracker immediately is imagined in a memorial video.
sick. twisted.
I take a picture of him and his Dad and subconsciously think we will be grateful we have this picture if he dies. Every picture makes me think this. I can't bring myself to ever delete a picture of him. Not even a blurry one. Because I know how it feels when its all over and I know the feeling of wishing I had more pictures. More memories. More of her still.
There is consistently new images in my mind of him dieing.
He drowns in the bathtub, he chokes on his food, he falls, we get into a car accident, someone shakes him, he stops breathing, he gets sick. Every God damn day images run through my mind of him dieing. of god taking him. of holding his body. of having to say good bye. of planning a funeral. of making that memorial video that holds the beginning, middle and end to his life.
and everyday I make myself stop. Stop cleaning, stop working, stop taking. and sit there. Sit there and watch him. Learn every small detail. Memorize his face. His movements. His sounds. I smell him. I love on him. And I beg God not to take him.
I promise I'll be thankful. I'll love more. I'll do more with him. I'll stop more. I'll not get overwhelmed. I'll hold him more. I'll barter. I'll promise one thing as long as he doesn't take my son. Everyday.
Is this good? Is this detrimental? Is this normal?
So much love. So much hurt. So much gratitude. So much missing. So much happiness. So much fear. So much hope. So much denial.
What is okay? What is not?

I don't know.
I don't know how to sort my feelings. I don't really know how to deal with them. 
So I write.


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