My First Miscarriage – Overcoming and Empathy

I know that talking about a miscarriage is a little taboo. It’s hard to talk about. People don’t know what to say and they are afraid they will say the wrong thing to those suffering. So, I wanted to share my first miscarriage with you. If you have had one, maybe you can relate and find peace that you are not alone. If you have not, maybe you can begin to comprehend what it might be like.

Those who have experienced a miscarriage may be worried about what people will say to them, or they may be terrified that they will burst into tears and may never be able to stop crying. After all, it took plenty of hours to get the tears to stop the last time they started.

At least, that’s how it was for me when I had my first miscarriage.

Before My First Miscarriage

I never really expected to experience my first miscarriage. I didn’t ever think I would have one. That may sound arrogant or oblivious, but my mom had never mentioned having one and while I saw them happening to my friends all around me, I just didn’t think I would ever understand what that was like.

A Little Background

We have two beautiful children. We are really fortunate and are usually able to conceive fairly quickly. Our daughter was conceived at the first opportunity and we had her 9 months later. The same thing happened with our son.

We had always planned on having four children. And for some reason, baby number 3 always had me a little nervous. In the back of my head, I worried that it would be hard to bring baby number 3 into the world.

My two beautiful children before my first miscarriage.

Trying for Number 3

As we neared my son’s first birthday, we were getting excited to try for our third child. Because I had always conceived so easily, I just assumed that this time it would be the same. The first month we tried but after 28 days I still had a negative pregnancy test and evidence that we had not been successful.

I tried not to let it get me down. After all, most women didn’t get pregnant as quickly as I had in the past. This was normal. It wasn’t ideal, but we could wait another month, or two… hopefully it wouldn’t go longer than that… I was nervous.

The Positive Pregnancy Test

The second month of trying, 11 days post ovulation, I stared at that stick and stared until I saw a faint line on the positive side. At this point, I had to ask my husband to verify that there was actually a line and I wasn’t just seeing things because I was hoping SO HARD to see a line.

“I think I can see what you mean,” he said. That whole day, I was on Cloud 9. I couldn’t believe it. We were pregnant! WE WERE PREGNANT!!! I wanted to shout it to everyone. We were going to have a baby. It took me about two minutes to calculate the due date, July 1st, and I was ecstatic.

But at the same time, it felt too good to be true.

It was my mom’s 50th birthday the day we found out, and I thought how fun it would be to tell her on her birthday. But Austin wanted to wait until we got a darker line, just to make sure.

More Positive Tests

The next couple of days I took two more pregnancy tests. Each time, the line got darker. It was real, we were really pregnant. But for some reason, we didn’t tell anyone. Usually we told our parents right away, but this time we didn’t. I don’t know why.

Same and Different

I suspected I was pregnant before I actually got the positive test because I was starving ALL the time. I was eating so much food and still felt hungry. That is always my first clue. So, that was the same. But then, the similarities kind of stopped.

In the past, my early pregnancy is riddled with extreme tiredness. And I was tired, but with the fatigue, I felt like I had a different hormone coursing through my body and for the beginning of my pregnancy I was just really on edge. It felt like I was constantly anxious.

In spite of my exhaustion, I couldn’t fall asleep when I would go to bed. Finally after a couple of hours I would drift into an uneasy sleep only to be awakened a couple of hours later and then start the process all over again.


The thing that was the most different though, was the cramps. I had never experienced cramps with any other pregnancy. It had me a little worried, but everything online said it could just be your uterus expanding. I thought, well I’ve already had two kids and it didn’t mind expanding then, so that didn’t make a lot of sense.

My next thought was a hopeful, maybe it’s twins! Maybe it has to stretch to make room for two and this can be my last pregnancy because we would have four kids earlier than expected.

I knew that cramping in and of itself wasn’t bad. It was only bad if I started bleeding.

My First Miscarriage

Trigger Warning

On October 28, 2017 we had a Fall Festival at our church. There was chili, costumes, trunk or treating and general merriment. I felt like a zombie. I told one of my friends that I felt bad for people who came up and talked to me because I was just wiped. I was feeling more cramps, but it was probably just because of my very tight Elsa dress that I wore to match my daughter’s Anna.

Hours before My First Miscarriage

I took my daughter around to all of the trunks and she collected her treats and then we headed home.

The First Signs

I couldn’t easily go to the bathroom in that dress, so when I got home I definitely had to go. After getting the kids settled, I excused myself and after seeing something out of the ordinary, I felt my heart sink.

There was spotting. Not a lot. But I had never spotted before during a pregnancy. It didn’t feel real. I put a panty liner in, hoping it was just spotting. I wouldn’t have been as worried if it had all been dark, but a little tiny bit was bright red. I knew bright was bad.

I walked into the living room and told Austin. He looked concerned. I started crying. I felt silly for crying. It was just a little bit after all. It didn’t mean that anything was wrong necessarily.

Next Steps

We called the doctor, who we knew wouldn’t answer because it was a Saturday, and so we got the number to call for the doctors on call. She told me to just take it easy, to try not to worry and to go to the ER if I was going through a pad every hour.

We relaxed for a little bit. After all, just spotting. We stayed up and watched some shows and then went to sleep around eleven. At eleven, I could tell the bleeding had gotten a little worse, but I kept telling myself, it didn’t NECESSARILY mean what I thought it meant.

Night Time

Around two in the morning I woke up and went to the bathroom. Blood, clots, a lot of stuff. I knew in my heart that it was bad, but I still kept telling myself, it’s okay. Everything is probably fine. Everything has always been fine. My body takes care of my babies. I’m not having my first miscarriage.

I couldn’t go back to sleep though. After an hour and a half of tossing and turning I finally just went out into the living room and started watching The Office. If anything could make me feel a little better, that would at least distract me. Around five, Austin got up, probably wondering where I was.

He went back to bed. I followed and tried to fall asleep again and couldn’t. I got up and went to the bathroom. More of the same of the 2:00 bathroom trip.

Austin was awake when I came back. “I just don’t see how this is going to be okay,” I told him. I cried more. He held me.

When I Knew

After trying to find comfort, but unable to, I had the idea to take a pregnancy test. If it was positive, then I could just wait until the doctor’s appointment. Maybe everything was okay.

I didn’t think it would be negative. I thought there might just be a faint line and that would be disheartening but I would be able to wait.

I got it ready and watched. I stepped away for a bit, because it was supposed to take five minutes and I was going crazy just waiting for the line. Then, I looked at it again, expecting to see a faint line like I had the first time I took one.

The line wasn’t there. It was a completely negative pregnancy test. I grabbed one of the positive pregnancy tests still lying on the bathroom counter and felt myself trembling as I held them next to each other. There was no line. Not a shadow, nothing. It was blank where the line used to be.

I felt like I had just been hit in the chest and I might never breathe again. The line was gone and I knew at that moment that my baby was gone too.

My Loving Husband

I wanted to collapse on the floor, but before I could, Austin had his arms around me, holding me even though I didn’t want to be held. I sobbed, gasping and crying with the ugliest sounds I’ve ever made. I didn’t care. The raw noises were the only things that came close to expressing how I felt. I cried so hard. How could I have been pregnant and now it was all over? How was that possible? It was like it had never even happened.

I wanted Austin there and I didn’t all at the same time. I wanted to melt in agony but he was preventing me from melting. His arms were gently around me, supporting me even when I pushed away. He didn’t shush me. He just let me sob. I don’t know how long I cried. It felt like forever. I cried until I couldn’t anymore. Instead of melting into agony, I felt like a hardened shell of a person when the crying had passed.

It was Over.

I had just had my first miscarriage. It was over. There was nothing I could do. I was completely powerless. My baby was gone. July 1st would come and go and there wouldn’t be a little baby to hold.

As crushing as it was to see a negative pregnancy test after multiple positive ones, it also gave me a sense of finality, of closure. I didn’t wonder anymore if I had had my first miscarriage. I knew I had. I didn’t have to feel anxiety until I saw the doctor anymore. I knew it was over.

In that sense, knowing was better. Now I could grieve and start to pick myself up again.

After My First Miscarriage

Unfortunately, the next day was Sunday. I needed to be at church. All of the children would be singing and doing a program in a couple of weeks and this was our first practice  inside of the chapel. I am playing the piano and needed to be there to practice with them.

I debated about not going. Aside from the emotional and physical toll of my first miscarriage, I had also only slept for 3 hours. My eyes were swollen from the thousands of tears shed during the night and I knew people might notice. I wanted to wear sunglasses at church, but I thought that would look even more weird.

All I had to do, was make it through 3 hours of church without crying.


The opening song was Be Still, My Soul. If you are familiar with the song, you know it is a hard one to sing when you’re grieving. I didn’t sing. I tried not to listen to the words. Who picked that song anyways? The sacrament hymn was Thy Will O Lord Be done, which also pressed tears to my ducts with every lyric. I didn’t sing again.

I was very grateful that the talks were not on hardship, eternal families or prayer. Hearing about those things would set me off. I was like a bomb that would explode if a feather grazed the detonation button.

I tried not to talk to too many people but I also tried not to be rude. I just didn’t want them to look long enough at my face and realize that something was off.

I had two people notice something and ask me if everything was okay. I had already decided that I would just tell anyone who asked that I was tired, which was true.

And if you know me, you know how much even a half truth kills me. I will almost always tell people the truth if they ask me directly. In this instance, I couldn’t. I didn’t want to start crying all over again, because I knew that if I did, I wouldn’t be able to stop.

Playing the Piano

Unfortunately, playing the piano is a contemplative calling. Sometimes while I was playing the children’s songs, I would get caught up in the notes and my mind would wander back to the night before. I would replay it. I would see the negative pregnancy test again.

Then I would mess up the song and have to force myself back to reality. No one would have noticed that I was messing up more than usual. I have let everyone know that I am not the best piano player. It was nothing too out of the ordinary to hear me stumble across the keys.

Heading Home

I finally made it to the car. We drove in silence for a while and with no prompting whatsoever, tears rolled over my lower eyelids again. I couldn’t hold them back anymore. I had spent 3 hours trying not to let them out.

Austin gave me his ‘I love you’ and ‘I’m sorry’ face and held my hand.

Peace about My First Miscarriage

At some point on Sunday night, it was like something inside of me snapped. I’m not sure if it was that my body physically couldn’t handle being sad anymore, or a gift from God (probably the latter), but I suddenly felt very at peace about it.

At peace is the best way to describe it. In my heart, I knew and I still know now that the little baby I lost is not always going to be lost. I don’t know all of the doctrine about what happens with miscarriages, but the way I felt and the impression I received was that I would still get to one day hold the little baby that had started to form inside of me. I would just have to wait a little bit longer to do it.

I felt a very distinct hope that the baby was still ours and that it was all going to be okay. One day in the future, I would hold my child and know that he or she had been waiting for us too.


I received a lot of tender mercies over the weekend. My very active little boy for some reason wanted to cuddle with me (never happens) and he fell asleep in my arms and I got to lay on the couch with him and press my cheek against his soft, fluffy head for an entire hour. It was almost like he was a newborn again.

My daughter snuggled with me too and gave me lots of loves.

I felt such clarity. For the first time in a while I could feel very strongly the love of my Heavenly Father and His Son surround me. I knew that He was aware of me. I knew that He loved me and my family and that He was aware of our pain. I knew He was proud of me and what I was trying to accomplish in my life.

Moving Forward

I hope one day we can welcome two more children into our home. I don’t know what the future holds. But I do know how invested our Heavenly Father is in my family. I felt His presence so strongly and felt how deeply He cares for our family and how much He sorrowed with us.

He loves us all so much and I hope that I never forget that. It’s hard for me to see His love all the time when I haven’t gone through something devastating for a while. It seems like when I really need Him (not just when I think I need Him), He doesn’t hesitate to throw his arms around me. Some more thoughts on God’s Love

I know He loves me. I know He loves my family. I know He hears and answers our prayers, even if it’s not the answer we want.


I have hope that our little family isn’t done growing yet.

Tent Rocks Adventure – Kasha Katuwe, New Mexico

I’m a little behind, but I wanted to share our awesome experience in New Mexico when Steve, Marie, Austin & I got to explore the Tent Rocks in New Mexico. The best part was, Grandma and Grandpa watched the kiddos so we could go on a much needed double date. Trust me, camping with 3 kids under 3 was a little challenging in the middle of the night for at least one of the babies. So, we escaped and let the grandparents deal with the collateral damage of 3 little ones with little sleep. 😀

Tent Rocks in New Mexico

These were awesome! It looked like man had somehow formed them, but they didn’t. They’re just all natural and it made me wonder if we were somehow on an alien planet. I loved going through the ravine and exploring God’s beautiful creation.

Below is a slideshow of our fun adventures. And of course, I had to pick the song, On Top of the World, by Imagine Dragons. I felt it was only fitting after hiking up a mountain. It seemed like a big one to me, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t. I’m just old, post-childbirth and a bit of a wimp. We had a blast!

Let me just say that there is a pic in there where my sister and I are both flexing. Those sweet guns are from lugging my extremely precious, extremely heavy baby boy around. Yep, off the charts for EVERYTHING. If you had an extremely wiggly little human latched onto you for much of the day, you would get some big guns too. That’s all I can say about that.

Hope you enjoy some of the beautiful views and me and my family’s goofy personalities. So fun to go hiking with my sister and brother-in-law. Next time we can take the kids??

My Grandpa’s Funeral – which I didn’t attend

My Grandpa’s Funeral

I didn’t get to go to my Grandpa’s funeral. It was in Idaho and I am currently in Michigan. As I type this, my family is driving to the gravesite to say a final goodbye to him.

Although I didn’t get to attend, I did get to create a Memorial Slideshow for him. I love my Grandpa. Sifting back through years of pictures to see him at his best moments was truly a treat.

I especially loved seeing the pictures of him when he was my age, or when he just had a couple of kids, like I do now. I wonder if he was as clueless as I feel sometimes. I wonder if he and Grandma weren’t as pro at their relationship as they were in their later years. He must have had moments when he wondered what his life would be like. I wonder if he was happy as he lay there in his final days at what his life had become. I hope you enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed making it.

Tribute to a Great Man at My Grandpa’s Funeral

I will always remember brewer’s yeast, playing cards with him, and listening to his jokes. Once when we were hiking back from our fishing spot on the Russian River, I remember joking with him about if there was a bear, all we had to do was run faster than Grandpa. He didn’t think that was so funny.

I miss you Grandpa. I’m glad you get to be with Grandma now. You were an example to me throughout most of my life about how to be happy in every circumstance. I loved your joking around and harassing us all, even up until you knew you were knocking on death’s door. I know I will see you again and I can’t to play cards with you in the eternities. I love you!

Life after Death

For more information on what we believe happens after we die, feel free to visit this website and watch their sweet video. It explains how we can have hope for the future, even when our loved ones slip from this life into the next.

Spoiled Camping with Two Little Ones

Austin and I had the awesome opportunity to go camping with our kids. Granted, it was a very easy, spoiled camping trip. This trip took very little effort on our part, but at least it inspired us to do more camping in the future.

Here’s a video of our fun!

Why I Call it Spoiled Camping

Spoiled Meals

We went with my parents and they had a motorhome, an awesome tent for us and a fun little pool for the babies. Unfortunately, the campsite didn’t allow campfires…. ummmm… isn’t that what camping is all about? So as much as we might have liked to make campfire meals, we used the motorhome instead. Pasta one night, yummy sandwiches, yogurts and fruits.

So, let’s be honest. It was less like camping and more like hanging out in a motor home with televisions and cell signals. But, Austin, the kids & I all slept in a tent.

Spoiled Sleeping in a Tent

Yes, we slept in a tent. Siena had a cushioned cot above the ground. Grayson had a pack and play. Austin and I had an air mattress. In case you haven’t put the pieces together, it was a really big tent. Again, all of this stuff was provided by my parents. So, yeah, we slept in a tent. But really we slept on 3 different beds for four people.

spoiled camping in a tent

Spoiled Hygiene

I took a shower right before we left, preparing for the worst. We were going to be gone two nights. And we probably weren’t all going to take turns in the motorhome shower.

However, after being there for about 24 hours, we found out there was a shower there. I didn’t want to go and shower immediately, but I was starting to smell. So, that night, Austin and I went down to the showers.

My preconceived notion was cement floors, gross plastic shower curtains and fluorescent lights that had been darkened by millions of moth wings.

No, no, no! The bathrooms were well-lit, showers had stalls that locked and tile floors. AND, there was a giant heat lamp over the shower stalls. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

And of course while I’m showering, a couple of girls come in and are using the stall next to me. One of them says, “ew! There’s spiders in here.”

I looked around and couldn’t identify what they thought were spiders. I didn’t see any bugs.

“This shower is horrible!”

What were they expecting? It seemed way nicer than any camping shower I’ve ever been to. We’re not at a hotel. I couldn’t help but chuckle at our drastically different reactions.

Spoiled Camping because of All the Time

It was awesome being able to spend time with my family and my kids. Our kids loved playing together. They loved splashing around in the pool, especially when the days got super hot.

We went on a hike with my sister and brother-in-law.


And we got to play games and enjoy each other’s company. All in all, it has inspired Austin and I to go on more adventures with our kids and make some more memories. We can’t wait to get back to Michigan and go on some journeys.


If you want to read about how we managed to get across the country with our two little ones, click here.

Across the Country with 2 Little Ones

It’s been awhile since I posted and the truth is, we’ve been getting ready to go out of town. And it will be quite the journey. We have stops in four different states and I’ll be doing part of the traveling alone. Going across the country with 2 little kids is a feat all by itself, but combine that with our grand mistakes and you have quite the adventure.

ready to fly across the country
So naive, before we traveled across the country.

The First Leg Across the Country

In our infinite young parent wisdom, we thought it would be a great idea to save some money and only fly to Denver instead of paying the extra $300 per ticket to get to Albuquerque. Then we could rent a car and drive the rest of the way. We were going to have to rent a car anyways. Genius!

The Airport

At 4:30 in the morning, our alarms went off. I felt like I should get up, but stubbornly remained in bed. I kept feeling like I needed to get up, so finally I begrudgingly rolled out of bed around 4:40. We got ready and it took a little longer than we were anticipating. We didn’t end up leaving the house until 6:00. Which would have been plenty of time if we didn’t have to battle Detroit early morning traffic.


It was crawling through the city. Everyone was trying to get into work and we had an early flight to catch. We finally arrived at the airport with about an hour before the flight left. We loaded all of the stuff inside and checked our bags and then Austin had to go and drop the car off at the parking lot. I took the kids through security by myself.

me with the kids across the country


We waited and waited and waited for Austin to get back from dropping off the car in the satellite lot. The first zone went, the second zone (which we were in because of the kids) went and as I paced around the gate trying to keep the kids happy, we waited and waited. I started the preliminary anxious text messages. “Status?” “Almost here?” “Everyone is leaving…”

As the last people boarded the plane, I saw him emerge from the main part of the airport. The first leg of our across the country journey almost had a very different beginning. We were there in just enough time.

Someone was Looking Out for Us

Sometimes you see God in the little things. Honestly, we would not have made our flight if I had stayed in bed that morning. He knew we’d be running late and that traffic would keep getting worse and He helped us make it just in time.

The Flight

The flight was long and I’m sure frustrating for people around us. But I couldn’t feel too bad for the lady who sat in front of us because she had the whole row to herself while there were four of us on the row behind her.


snuggling with my boy across the countryAt first Grayson was just fascinated with every aspect of the airplane. The tray table in front of us, the arm rests, the windows, Siena’s reaction to his grabbing the seatbelt, everything. Maybe Mama’s mouth felt different inside the airplane? Maybe Daddy’s eye was more fun to poke in the airplane? But after about a half an hour of exploring his new surroundings, the toll of being awake since 5:30 had started to hit. He started fussing when he realized he was nowhere near a bed…specifically his bed.

And then he started wriggling every which way. Trying to hold him is like trying to hold an angry cat that doesn’t want to be held. It is a constant battle of counterbalancing his bowling ball body. He throws his 27 lbs around like it is no big deal. And FINALLY he got settled and fell into a little slumber on my chest.

This doesn’t happen very often, so to say that I was happy would be an understatement. Because not only did I get to snuggle with my baby but I wasn’t having to wrestle a lion cub.

snuggly boy
Seriously, so snuggly!


Siena was content to eat some food, revel in the glory of her own seat and watch her shows that I had downloaded for her. But at some point the novelty wore off and suddenly Grayson’s limp feet dangling off my lap were just too much for her and the tormenting began.

siena in her own chair across the country

At first I didn’t notice her moving his foot up and down with her foot and then she started kicking him. I told her to stop, which startled Grayson. After raising my voice at her for something else, he was awake again…

Grayson & Siena

Sometimes, they were great as we flew across the country. They would watch shows together. Siena would share her toys or give him Veggie Straws. Sometimes they would get along so well, much to our detriment. Meaning they would scream and shout in unison so that everyone on the plane had to look and see what was so exciting in 22 A, B, and C.

show watching across the country

And then other times we were having to pull them off of each other as Grayson grabbed Siena’s hair or Siena hit him because she was mad or because they were wrestling in the middle seat.

Wet Diapers

It was also after Grayson woke up that Austin and I realized their diapers were either soaking wet or completely soaked through the pants too (in Siena’s case). He was the brave soul who changed them.

father and sonsnuggling with dad on flight across the countrysleeping with daddy across the country

Apparently Siena’s was completely drenched and he said he had filled up the entire bathroom with a thick, foul urine smell. The poor person who followed after them was probably not amused.

But he also used two different bathrooms to equally distribute the smell. One for Grayson and one for Siena.


We arrived at the airport, got our belongings and then waited for an hour with the kids in the stroller until Daddy came back with the car.

stroller in airport

Remember our “genius” plan?

Someone was Looking Out for Us Again

Somehow, Austin managed to get upgraded from a Sedan to a Chevy Tahoe! And it was for free! One of his main stresses was how we were going to fit all of our stuff in a Sedan with the kids and our bags and haul it across the country. Luckily we didn’t have to find out.


The kids were exhausted and both of them crashed within a half an hour of getting in the car. But Siena woke up about a half an hour later when we got food. I wish I could say that she went back to sleep, but she never did…

Grayson slept a little longer and was not happy when he woke up. This was only about an hour after being in the car (including time to get food). We still had SO far to go.

We stopped because I suspected he was poopy. After getting them both changed and fed, we were off and Grayson finally settled back to sleep.

Siena watched her show. And this went on for a while. It was relatively peaceful, except for the growing trepidation at the remaining length of the trip.

Someone was Looking Out for Us a Third Time

At some point, Austin asked me to check the map and as I put in the route so I could get the amount of time remaining, I realized we had just passed a fork in the route that would have cut off a half an hour. We quickly rerouted and only lost a couple of minutes as opposed to more.

What we Saw

The drive was long and the kids were at the ends of their rope but experiencing all of the little towns along the way was kind of once in a lifetime. Driving across the country on little known roads leads to big memories. We got to see so much culture and life that we never knew existed.

One of our favorite moments was when we saw a bearded old man with white hair to the bottom of his shoulder blades, shirtless and carrying a box on top of his head with a globe poking out of the top, walking along the freeway. What?!

We saw tons of Adobe structures and little towns we probably never would have seen if we would have just flown to Albuquerque.

And to be honest, we probably won’t see them again. Because after all of this we have learned that going across the country this way is not what we want to do again.


We were about twenty minutes from the house and Grayson woke up after his second nap during the drive. This one was only about half an hour long. And he immediately thought Siena was the most hilarious thing ever. Because I have never heard him laugh that hard. I caught a little tiny bit of it, but this went on the whole rest of the way to my parent’s house.

So after a long day, this was definitely a great way to end it. We were so happy to see my parents and family and I think they were just as happy to see us.

37 Weeks!! …………………………………….Postpartum

37 Weeks!

That’s right, if I were pregnant, I’d like to think my baby would be knocking down my uterus door but she wouldn’t be and I’m not. My baby would probably want to hang out for another month in my apparently very comfortable uterus. And while I may not be 37 weeks pregnant, I am 37 weeks postpartum. Check out my baby bump.

37 weeks postpartum


My Baby Bump

It’s true. There is no actual baby inside of it. But it’s still a baby bump because it was home to two babies at different points. It stretched and ballooned up, and like a balloon, it just didn’t return to it’s pre-blown up state.

Balloon Blown up and released and new

I didn’t pop. The air, or baby and all of the gory, juicy things that came with it, went out of me. And what was left was my used balloon. I blew it up again. My mom blew hers up 5 times. I have a friend who’s mom blew it up 18 times. Each time, the balloon sustained some wear and tear, but weren’t the prizes worth the slightly damaged shell?

My Badge of Honor

I am still trying to lose weight and get in shape. I want to be healthy so, I’m eating healthier and working out. But even with all of my efforts to change, I don’t think I will ever go back to the pre-blown up balloon. My skin might be a little looser, I may not be able to jump on a trampoline and I can probably write off modeling as a future career option.

my little creations

But look what I helped to create! My body sacrificed and I paid the price to have these beautiful little humans in our family. I never want to go back to the pre-blown up balloon, because that me-balloon hadn’t experienced the strongest love that can only be brought about by the greatest sacrifice.

I am 37 weeks postpartum and my heart has never been more full.

37 weeks postpartum with my two babies
Grayson looks angry, but he is really just extremely focused on splashing.


Read my son’s birth story for a riveting tale of endurance, or my daughter’s birth story for an adventure of even more endurance.

God’s Love & Parent’s Love – Finding it

God’s Love

It’s usually a small thing. Sometimes I barely notice the trigger. But usually at some point throughout the busy, hectic, stressful, frustrating, fun, crazy day I have a moment where I remember just how deeply I love my children. It might be Siena volunteering to snuggle with me. Or my son, Grayson raising his arms as far as he can and looking at me as if I am supposed to know what he wants. I do. He wants me to pick him up. And if I take a moment and contemplate on my love, I am always left with a small impression of how great God’s love must be for His children.

The Deepest Love

I can’t even begin to fathom how anyone could love their children more than I love mine. And I don’t say that in an arrogant way. It’s more, I really cannot comprehend of a deeper love. My husband and I love each other. But I think that love is more built rather than instinctual. Loving your child has to be some sort of biological necessity, because even after the tantrums, the headaches you get, the sleepless nights, the bitten fingers and stressful talks, you are still hopelessly in love with your babies.

Deeper than My Deepest

Then to learn that God’s love is more than we can comprehend, is literally beyond comprehension. Now I know what it feels like to love someone so much it hurts. And I can’t imagine someone having that kind of love for me. I can’t fathom that.

God's love greater than a mother's love

God’s Love

At times I haven’t always believed that it is real. I have struggled and prayed to feel His love and been left with an empty feeling. Fear clutched at me as I thought that perhaps He didn’t love me. I kept praying. It has taken a long time. But in case you are feeling the way I have felt, I did receive an answer.

How I Know

It wasn’t a booming, in your face, heart warming expression of love. I kept waiting for something unmistakable. If he wanted me to know of His love, isn’t that how it would come? There would be no denying an answer to a prayer like that. Or so I thought.

As I’ve gotten older though, I learned that I can’t always trust the experiences that seem so crazy out of the ordinary. Because the further away I get from it, I question my own memory. It seemed real at the time, but it doesn’t always after coming back down to reality.

Instead my answer has been a constant flow of reassurance. I study my scriptures, I tell Him my doubts, my concerns and my emotions. And in response, He guides me to the correct answers. He helps me solve my problems. He listens to me even when I’m screaming at Him in my prayers. And after I have calmed down, He shows me the truth. God doesn’t tell me He loves me; He shows me.

God Doesn’t Tell Me He Loves Me; He Shows Me

God’s love is a parent’s love. Sometimes expressions or declarations of ‘I love you’ fall on deaf ears. Children forget. And after being a child and a parent, I know that as a child, you can never comprehend the love of your parents until you are one.

I don’t remember one time hearing ‘I love you’ that had a profound influence on me from my parents.

God and parents impress their love upon their children by teaching, guiding, correcting, and showing you the way to be happy. That’s what God does for me. That’s what my parents did and still do for me. So, that’s what I hope to do for my children.

God's love evident in our family

Healthy Popcorn Snack – Less Prep Time than Butter Popcorn

Delicious popcorn with my movies is something I could never live without. But buttery crunchy, poofy goodness is not exactly compatible with a healthy lifestyle. And because I have to continue eating this for the rest of my life, I had to come up with a healthy popcorn snack.

healthy popcorn snack

Tools for Healthy Popcorn Snack

Before you start, there is a tool you need. You need a hot air popcorn popper. This kind is important because air doesn’t add any calories and still gets the popcorn out of its kernel state.

I included all the ingredients I use. You could also substitute the Pam for an Olive Oil spray. I just haven’t tried it, but I think that would work fine and be a little healthier.


How to Make Healthy Popcorn Snack

Pour a 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels into the hot air popcorn machine. As the popcorn is coming out in the bowl, spray each layer of popcorn with the Pam. Usually I have about 3 layers.

Then sprinkle with sea salt. It is very important to use sea salt instead of regular salt. Iodized table salt is granular and doesn’t stick as well. Sea salt is more of a powder. When you sprinkle it, just rub it between your thumb and index finger. It will stick to the fine layer of Pam sprayed on the popcorn.

healthy popcorn snack


Husband Approved, but not Husband Adored

Austin likes this okay, but if truth be told, he would much prefer big globs of butter. He suggested spraying more of the Pam and adding more salt. You’ll have to play around with your own portions for taste.

With a little adjusting, I think Austin and I will have a healthy popcorn snack that we both adore, but for now, it is just approved.

I’m all about full-disclosure.


I have more yummy snacks to share with you too.

Potato Wedges

Spicy Fry Sauce

Power Protein Pancakes – A Staple for Healthy Eating

When it comes to healthy eating, Power Protein Pancakes are a staple for me. They’ve got protein, complex carbohydrates and fruit.

I’d be curious if adding some spinach to it would give you some added vitamins too without sacrificing flavor.

The Power Protein Pancakes recipe is SO easy. I will literally just block off a couple of hours to make 6 batches or so of this. Because once they are in pancake form, I just pop them in some gallon ziplocks and keep them in the fridge. To reheat them, just put them in a toaster.

They never get soggy and they never dry up. My husband likes these better than regular pancakes for that reason.

power protein pancakes with strawberries

Power Protein Pancakes


3 eggs
1 cup oats
1 cup cottage cheese
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon


Dump everything in a blender and blend. Use batter like regular pancake batter.


Healthy Topping Ideas

I like to put Unsweetened Apple Sauce on it and it is a perfect, healthy meal that I can eat a lot of. I usually make a ton of this recipe and then I have a really easy meal every morning when I wake up. There are so many yummy toppings that are also healthy. Try to skip the Maple Syrup and go for one of these instead!

  • Unsweetened Apple Sauce
  • Healthy Fruit Syrup
  • Honey
  • Peanut Butter
  • Almond Butter
  • Bananas
  • Cinnamon

Eating Healthy can be a challenge, but having some sure fire foods around the house at all times will guarantee a more successful venture. When we are trying to eat healthy, we always try to have easy-to-grab healthy food on hand at all times. Power Protein Pancakes are one of those things.

Give them a try and if you find more delicious things to add then please put your ideas in the comments below. New tips and secrets are always great from allies in the pursuit of health.

For more healthy recipes from One Helluva Homemaker!

Creamy Crab Pasta – Healthy & Delicious

Lately, I have been trying to come up with healthy, delicious recipes because my body is just not shedding weight as quickly as it has in the past. Creamy Crab Pasta not only is delicious, but it is also super healthy, despite it’s naughty sounding name.

This is not only one of my favorites, but it is husband approved. There are few recipes that get my husband to rave about it and then to be stuck in a dilemma. Eat it all now, or save it so that he can enjoy it again tomorrow?

So, because I want this to be super easy for you, the recipe is below. I’ll add pictures when I make it again. But, delicious!

If you’re into not having to go grocery shopping, I included all of the available ingredients from Amazon Pantry down below.


Creamy Crab Pasta


  • Wheat Pasta (Spaghetti works great)
  • Salt
  • 2 cups Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons Flour
  • Crab or Imitation Crab
  • 4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Minced Garlic Cloves
  • Red Pepper Flakes


Fill up a pot with water and salt it. Heat on stovetop until boiling.

1. Crab of the Creamy Crab Pasta

While it is heating up, Pour 4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil in a frying pan on low heat. Saute minced garlic until it starts to sizzle. Put crab or imitation in with garlic and allow the crab to absorb the garlic flavor.

2. Creamy of the Creamy Crab Pasta

Also, while waiting for pot of water to boil. Pour 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Mix in 4 Tablespoons of flour or until it starts to form a paste.

Once a paste has formed, pour in milk. Allow it to heat up until it thickens. Add in salt and pepper to taste and the red pepper flakes.

3. Pasta of the Creamy Crab Pasta

After the salted water has started boiling, pour in pasta and cook al dente.

Creamy Crab Pasta

Put the pasta on your plate first, then the cream sauce and then the sauteed crab on top. Spicy, creamy, sweet, delicious.

I included the Lindt chocolates, because first of all, DELICIOUS! Second of all, Stracciatello happens to be one of my husband’s favorite gelato flavors from Italy. And since this is Italian… enjoy your indulgence!

For a delicious Healthy Dessert!!!