Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Post Of Randoms

I'm tired this morning. For the first time since Zoelle was able to crawl, she came into our bed in the middle of the night last night. She NEVER does this and it surprised me. She has been having a tough time in the middle of the night lately where she will cry out off and on and sleep fitfully for awhile only to finally fall asleep exhausted hours later. Chris and I have been exhausted too after going back and forth to her room for hours trying to help her. Have any of your little ones done this around the age of three? Is it nightmares?

Even though I am tired this morning, Zoelle and I did our third day of preschool together this morning. She made this



and we both munched on cheerios together and still are. Can you tell what she is learning?

I keep meaning to do an updated post on our kitchen renovation but that means I need to take updated pictures which would first mean that Chris needs to finish a few little things around here. Overall though, it is mainly done and I love it! It gives my kitchen such an updated and completely different look.

Speaking of renovations, my blog is in it's final stages of re-design and I am excited to see it and show it to you. I think most of you that know me well will say it is "me".

This week I am determined to spend as much time as possible outside. It already has been and continues to look like it will be an absolutely gorgeous fall week. I love summer, but I truly do enjoy fall as well. It's just the long winters that follow that I don't necessarily always enjoy. There are aspects of it I do enjoy, but when it lasts forever and I have three little girls stuck inside all day, I don't enjoy it. But today I will focus on being thankful for this amazing weather and not think about what is to come. What is the weather like where you live?

For those who have been asking me how running is going, I can finally say we started back up late last night! And I don't hurt too badly this morning. We took almost a 3 week break because of Xiomara's surgery and then Tara was gone on a cruise. We are back at it though and shh....I think we are going to be signing up for our first ever 5K. No guarantees that we will run the whole time, but it is a start! Have any of you ever run a 5K?

Alright, this post of randoms got a lot longer than I intended, so I am off to enjoy the day! Hopefully you enjoy your day as well!
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Friday, September 24, 2010

Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

Did you know that September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness month? I remember as a kid my Great Grandma being diagnosed with cancer (not Ovarian) and being terrified. Shortly after my Great Grandma passed away from cancer, my Great Grandpa did too. Since that time, I have known many people in my life who have died from cancer. I've also had the priviledge of knowing many who have survived it. Cancer is an ugly thing. I wish I could say I knew more who survived it, so today I am doing my part is spreading the word about Ovarian Cancer Awareness.

Electrolux and Kelly Ripa are also partnering together to do their part in raising Ovarian Cancer Awareness. They are throwing a fashion show of sorts in which Perfect Steam and a little fashion ingenuity can take any garments from "Rumpled to Runway". Find out how you can help support the cause at Kelly Confidential and enter for a chance to win a daily shopping spree and the grand prize of one of these


When you participate, Electrolux will donate $1 to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. Good luck and thanks for doing your part in raising Ovarian Cancer Awareness!

Disclosure: I am participating in this blog post curtesy of Mom Select and Electrolux. By participating, I am entering for a chance to win the gift as part of the Electrolux program.
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Monday, September 20, 2010

Rockin' Green Cloth Diaper Detergent Review & Giveaway

It's not something I've talked a lot about on my blog before, but I am a cloth diapering mama. Perhaps one day I will do a post on why I switched from disposables to cloth and which diapers I like best and why. However, today I must tell you about an awesome laundry detergent for all of you cloth diapering mamas out there.



Rockin' Green Cloth Diaper Detergent is amazing! Earlier this summer I had been complaining of having stinky cloth diapers. I had tried everything I could think of on them. I did my research on Diaper Swappers and time and time again I kept hearing about something called Rockin' Green. I knew I had to give it a try.

The result: astounding! I have washed my diapers four times now just to make sure, but there is no stink. I have been found to be at my clothes line sniffing my cloth diapers just to make sure the are not stinky, and I for the life of me cannot smell any stink. Even my husband has noticed a difference!

Part of the reason I love Rockin' Green is that they offer several different kinds of soap depending on what type of water you have. This means that no matter what kind of water you have, your diapers are going to come out clean! Not sure which formula is right for you? Check out this awesome map to help determine which one is best for your area. 



Besides the fact that Rockin' Green actually worked, I love that it is eco-friendly so it is not only good for my daughters, but also for the earth. After I finished my first wash in Rockin' Green, I'm pretty sure I jumped up and down in excitement and then happily asked my husband if we can, from now on, buy Rockin' Green. After he took a sniff, I got two thumbs up and this is all I will buy for my cloth diapers from now. I love it that much!

Buy It!

Looking for a great cloth diaper detergent that won't leave build up and stink on your diapers? Then Rockin' Green is it!



Win It!

Not sure it's in your budget right now? Or not convinced it really works, but still want to give it a try? The generous people at Rockin' Green have offered one of my readers a full size bag in their choice of scent/formula!

Mandatory Entry:

Visit Rockin' Green, look around and come back here and tell me something you learned. Please do me the favor of making sure you leave your e-mail address in the comment if it is not visible on your profile. (1 entry)

Extra Entries:

1. Follow me on google friend connect and leave a comment telling me you are. (1 entry)

2. Follow me on Twitter and leave a comment telling me you are along with your Twitter ID. (1 entry)

3. Follow Rockin' Green on Twitter and leave a comment telling me you are along with your Twitter ID. (1 entry)

4. Tweet about this contest making sure you include @jewelsntreasure and @RockinGreenSoap along with a link to this contest somewhere in your Tweet (1 tweet/entry per day)

5. Become a fan/like of Jewels & Treasures on facebook and leave me a comment telling me you are along with your first name and last initial. (1 entry)
 
6. Become a fan/like of Rockin' Green on facebook and leave me a comment telling me you are along with your first name and last initial. (1 entry)
 
That's It!
 
Winner will be chosen at random from random.org Winner has 24 hours from being contacted to respond, or else a new winner will be chosen.

Contest ends Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at 11:59 p.m. CST

Congrats to #47: Helenlam-you have been emailed

*The featured product(s) in this post were provided to me free of charge by the manufacturer or pr company representing the company. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by anyone.
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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Hotel, Hospital, and Zoo!

I'm back! We are home from surgery! While I was in the hospital, blogger was blocked so I could not get on to update you all. The surgery was successful, she did well, the other girls did ok, and I survived too!

The girls had a blast at the hotel with dad! They swam lots and went shopping at a sporting good store with dad. Despite Meridian having a tough time sleeping during the night, Zoelle slept for 12 hours straight! Dad was a bit groggy, but I told him he was fine because I was up just that much that night with all the nurses checking in on Xiomara.


We got released yesterday and decided to go to a local zoo before we headed home. As you can tell Xiomara was so excited to see the Zebras, she promptly fell asleep!



Overall, we are glad it's over with and that Xiomara seems to be doing just great. We are home and back to life now. Today while the girls are napping, I'm blogging and doing laundry. Chris is outside cleaning our yard up, because despite not wanting winter to come, the air is getting much cooler and it's coming soon.

A big shout out to those of you who sent me facebook messages, or emailed me words of encouragement or prayers! I so appreciate you as it helped me stay calm!

Now, I'm off to do my laundry! Enjoy your weekend everyone!
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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Surgery Day


Today is surgery day for this little girl. If you want to read more about why she is having surgery, go to my adoption blog. We'd appreciate thoughts and prayers! Thanks and I'll update you all when I can!
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Monday, September 13, 2010

On becoming an auntie

I'm an aunt! I don't think I've really shared that yet. Oh yes, I've mentioned it a time or two, but I haven't done the all out bragging Auntie post. So this is it...don't tell me you weren't forewarned! ;)

Meet India




Yes my little niece, whom I swore was a nephew (sorry about that India) is named after the country. They have a really neat story behind her name. I love it. It's beautiful and it completely fits her.

I love her. I'm a mom to three little girls, but being an aunt is different. A very good different. I just love to stare at her and have her smile back at me. When she "talks" to me it makes me feel all warm and mushy inside. Recently she fell asleep in my arms and I fell in love with her all over again.



In a way she feels like she is a part of me. Maybe it's because I feel like I am a part of my sister. Growing up I wanted to be my sister, or to be with her all the time. We did everything together until she hit the junior high/high school age and I annoyed her to death! Sorry Gen. Who would have ever thought all these years later we would get to be mommies together?? It's been wonderful to have someone to talk to about those 3 a.m. feedings, or to go on walks with a couple of times a week. She gets me and I treasure her not only as a sister, but as my friend.



Even though I stole her thunder when Xiomara was born only two days before India, Genevieve has been incredibly gracious and kind. When she has every right to be mad at me, she has been a huge support to our adoption and has even pumped milk so that way Xiomara can be 100% breastfed.



Can I also just say how fun it is to see my big sister as a mama. The joy and love in her eyes is unmistakable.  I'm proud of her and the awesome mom she is today and I can't wait to see her and India blossom together as mother/daughter.



So congrats to my sister, her hubby, and welcome little India. I love you and can't wait too see God work in your life in so many ways.

Love, auntie Nessa (who is going to teach you all the wrong colors) ;)
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Saturday, September 11, 2010

I still remember

Where I was on that Tuesday morning: by my locker in my senior year of high school.

I still remember the panic and confusion even though we were thousands of miles away.

I still remember the pain and sadness felt by all.

May I never forget. May we never forget.

I still remember.

Where were you when you found out? What was your reaction?
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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Looking Back

Four years ago on this day, I found out I was pregnant with her.





Two years ago on this day, I found out I was pregnant with her.



Today, I have her.



And today I also took a test. It was negative. Sorry no picture of that as I figured the blog world didn't need to see that. The end!
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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Labor Day Weekend

I had an amazing weekend at home this Labor Day Weekend. In the past, I've been doing this




But this year, we sold our camper in an effort to get serious about our debt (thanks Dave Ramsey) and we stayed home. To be honest with you, I had a bad attitude about it. I LOVE camping! I so desperately wanted to camp this summer and kept praying God would miraculously drop a camper into our laps. Or umm..back yard. It obviously never happened, and looking back on it, I'm ok with it.

So this weekend, we had one of those relaxing weekends where we didn't really "do" anything, yet we still accomplished lots. On Friday, I took the girls out to my parents house while Chris went out to eat with my dad and younger brothers. My sister and her little girl (whom I still need to blog about) showed up and we all had a blast just talking, snuggling our babies, and freezing some food. Saturday, Chris let me sleep in while he took care of the girls. Then we just hung out together and cleaned out our garage a bit before winter. Sunday we had church and then an impromptu gathering with my family which was more fun! Sunday and Monday gave Chris a chance to work a little bit more on our kitchen renovation which is almost done and looking so beautiful!

Then on Monday, this little girl



turned two months old. We have yet to officially get a smile on camera, but the picture above shows the start of one. At two months old, she still loves to sleep lots. She also likes to be held and snuggled, so we do a lot of that. 



Overall, we had a wonderful weekend. It wasn't what I would have planned and I still would have loved to go camping, but then I would have probably missed out on the great bonding and relationships that were further cemented this weekend. So when I look at it that way, it was good to stay home. Maybe next year we can get back to camping.

What did you do this weekend? Do you ever go camping?
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Thursday, September 2, 2010

Exercising and the return of Fall

I woke up sad this morning. For today is September 2nd. Around here, August 31st is usually the last of summer. We may still have some really nice, hot days, but for the most part, summer is over. It makes me sad because I love summer, my kids love summer, my husband loves summer (well except extreme heat).

We live in a state that gets really cold and snowy in the winter. Thus, I have to be inside with three kids by myself all winter long. I'm a bit nervous this year. Last year, we had the most perfect short winter ever. It was a huge blessing. It never got extremely cold or too snowy. We got out lots and it was good. This year, I'm nervous that winter will last forever and that I'll go stir crazy inside. I love being outside, I love to walk, and I don't like feeling shut in my house all winter long. If you think of it, pray for me okay?

On the plus side, this cooler weather has allowed a good friend of mine from high school and I to start running. I almost laughed while typing that because neither one of us are runners. At all! However, after I had Zoelle I tried the From Couch to 5K program and thought it was good. I still didn't get to the point of enjoying running, but I also didn't have a partner. So while my beautiful friend Tara was visiting and meeting Xiomara for the first time last week,




I blurted out the question of whether or not she'd ever want to run with me. She was all in! So four days ago, we laced up our shoes, giggled lots, and got VERY out of breath, but we are doing it. Oh and did I mention we were sweaty?


*Please excuse my lazy eye, and sweat, and general bad picture of me (Tara you look great). Just keepin' it real here!


No promises that we will actually make it, or run a 5K (although one day I really would like to), but this is a start for both of us. For me, I still have about 10 lbs. I'd love to lose plus get toned, stay in shape, and show my girls a healthy lifestyle. The accountability is good for me. Tara pushes me to exercise and if it weren't for her, I never would have ran on day two. But I did and I will continue pressing on and update you all as I progress. Now, it's off to run!
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