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Saturday, July 31, 2010

Keep'em Coming

After my long heart rending tale of faith building and trust in God, I've realized I should probably just keep my mouth or perhaps blogging mouth shut. Yet here I am again.

Have you ever watched a press conference where the reporters throw out what we like to call "soft balls?" I'm really starting to wish God would cut me a break and throw a couple of soft balls my way. That just wouldn't be His style. No He has a way of cutting right to the chase of the matter. His pitches never miss, and sometimes in the heat of the moment I sure wish they did.

Money is always a hot topic in life, relationships, and pretty much all matters of society. Naturally adding to a family pushes all of those fears about money to the forefront. Please understand that I realize we have been extremely blessed. We aren't exactly where I would love to be financially, but we pay our bills on time and usually have a little extra to spare. With the expectation of a third child Chris and I really feel it is time for me to stay at home. Taking my income away will really put us in a different financial situation. We have been praying and looking hoping a door will open that will allow Chris to make more money, and me to stay home with the kids.

I said all of this to preface that I have already been deeply worrying about these things. I am a planner, and I want to know the exact how, when , and where things will work out.
In the mean time we had been saving to take a family vacation with my parents for there 30th wedding anniversary. This was planned long before we knew we were expecting, and this late in the game it was a little late to back out. Today we finished our final booking. I was excited, but a little leery as I knew once we returned home we would need to hit the ground running and really build up our savings. This evening we got in the car to take the kids swimming and lo and behold the car will not start. What????!!!! We seriously just dropped over $700 just a few months back to replace the alternator and battery. By now I am cursing myself, cursing life. All I want to do is take this car and push it over a cliff. I am fortunate that what sanity I had left reminded me that the financier would probably still require me to make payments car or no car.

So here I am late at night crying, stressing, and feeling guilty. I continue to pray this is something minor. Perhaps tomorrow I will laugh that I was so ruffled over nothing.
For tonight I must remind myself God is in control, and if I'm to be the woman He desires me to be I just have to say, Keep'em coming.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

And Then There Were Three

It was with some shock today that I learned I was pregnant with my third child. I am aware many people prefer to wait until a "safe" point to announce, but in my opinion a life is a life. If, God forbid, some tragedy were to befall us this baby would still have deserved every bit of excitement as any other. Today I announce to the world that little Medrano #3 will make their entrance into the world in late March or early April.

Today was certainly a day of mixed emotions. It is so strange, but it was like finding out I was pregnant for the first time. To say I am scared is an understatement. I spent a lot of the day crying. I feel guilty just saying that. I really am happy. I mean I think I always knew deep down inside that I was not finished having children. Still this was unexpected. I worried about money, about being able to leave my full time job, not having a big enough house, trying to balance attention between three children. I know it all probably seems silly in light of this great miracle of life. Of course I obviously have the emotions of a pregnant woman because everything makes me want to cry.

I didn't have any special way of telling Chris. He was busy with a project so by the time I picked him up I was such a mess I just kind of blurted it out. He was so happy and supportive. I'm sure it would have been a really sweet moment if I was not such a basket-case. We told the kids which I anticipated to be a little rocky. Kaylie has been pretty adamant to me about not wanting another brother or sister. I knew Micah would be mostly oblivious to this. He's never been the only child so he's always used to sharing attention. At first Kaylie looked a little upset. When we told her again with all certainty she was having another little brother or sister she started to warm up. I told her she has been such a great big sister and I know she will continue to be. I want her to feel involved, but not obligated. She seemed to perk up and started suggesting names for her potential brother or sister.

I have my first meeting with a midwife on Tuesday. Yes that's right Ms. two time epidural is going to venture into the realm of natural birth. I am quite nervous still about the prospect of giving birth outside of a hospital. I have been reading a lot about it before I even became pregnant. Of course when the chips are down every worst case scenario comes to mind. Still I have this desire to experience the joy and empowerment I have heard from so many woman who have chosen the less conventional route. I am actually hoping to have a water birth.
I am convinced that I have a higher tolerance for pain than the convenience of medical technology would have me think.

When I gave birth to Kaylie I was already dilated to 8cm by the time we reached the hospital. Why those nurses did not talk me out of an epidural I will never know. Actually I'm sure dollar signs had something to do with it. After receiving that epidural my labor slowed down to the point that they actually gave me pitocin to jump start things again. When I look back what I really needed was a gentle figure there to coach me through that last little bit of labor. Of course I just had a nurse who was inconvenienced at the fact that a woman actually showed up at the hospital on a Sunday morning for a ...gasp... a non induced labor.
Kaylie's birth is still so precious in my memories, but I still feel the pain of many decisions made on that day. Decisions I believe were made for the convenience of the medical staff and not my best interest,

Micah's delivery was fairly easy. Unfortunately my doctor convinced me we should induce Micah on the basis of Kaylie weighing in at 8lbs. 11 oz. at birth. When Micah went a bit past his due date it was all systems go. I wish I had been stronger and said no, but my fears from the last labor still lingered. Instead of working to assuage those fears, induction was the easy textbook answer. The pitocin caused me to launch into full on crazy hard contractions. Since I did not have the ability to gradually build up, the pain became excruciating. The anesthesiologist was just down the hall and was happy to oblige this miserable mommy. The actual labor was much shorter than with Kaylie. Much to our surprise Micah weighed in at 8lbs on the dot, even being late. Kaylie on the other hand was almost two weeks early. I really think God has a sense of humor in these things.

I share all of this to say I have not made this decision lightly. I am honestly looking forward to a more personal approach to maternity care. I also look forward to birthing this baby on my own terms, and not what the medical community deems ideal. Believe me I am not a doctor hater. Both of my OBGYN doctors were not bad. They simply do what they know to do in the context of a hospital setting. If for some reason I need to go to a hospital I have no qualms with it. I am just learning there may be a better way when it comes to birthing our children.

As I write I am still in some shock at the timing of these events. I am still adjusting to the changes. I know there is still a long journey ahead, but I am trying to let go. Not everything will always happen on my schedule. I may say it through tears but reliance on God is best perfected in a place that I do not have all the answers.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Shea Butter Extravaganza

For the past six years we have been priveleged to hold part ownership in a company producing pure, unrefined shea butter in an obscure country called Burkina Faso in West Africa.
Our goal was to provide a viable and steady work opportunity for the women of this country.
You can read more about the company at

We began the business selling in bulk to distributors and independent soap makers.
After many years working in this capactiy we have decided to offer the product on a retail level.

We are currently offering an 8 ounce jar for $20 or two 8 ounce jars for $30 plus shipping and handling.
Arrangements can also be made for pick up.
Unrefined shea butter does not contain the chemicals that you will find in the refined shea butter used in most standard personal care products. Shea Butter is an excellent moisturizer. Many customers report that shea butter has been extremely beneficial for a multitude of skin ailments. I personally found it to be a great tummy moisturizer during pregnancy.
Add your favorite essential oil or use it straight out of the jar.

If interested please send an e-mail to

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Free Weekend

It is all too tempting to wake up on a Saturday morning, lounge for awhile, and then head out for lunch. We may browse Target, maybe catch a movie, perhaps even indulge in another dinner. Of course it is almost inevitable that we will spend money while we are out. We work hard all week. We deserve it, right?

In a quest to save a little coin we have decided to embark on what I have heard termed as a "free weekend." What is a free weeked you may ask? Starting this everning anything we do must be free or at least already paid for in our current monthly budget. Obviously we are not going to turn off the electricity during this swelterting heat.. The only thing we can spend money on will be groceries for meals, and any gas for the car. We must eat all meals at home and utilize our current resources to have a good time.

I like spending as much as the next person. I mean consuming is the American way, right? In an attempt to delay pleasure in exchange for substantial payoff in the future, I am working to discipline those natural human tendencies. Hopefully in the process the whole family will transform, and we can have fun building our relationships and not just our collection of stuff.

Whether it's free or not have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Giddy Tuesday

I have a couple of reasons to be giddy today. Oh sure it's a Tuesday, and Tuesday is always worse than Monday in my book. Nevertheless I am excited.

Numero Uno: No dishes tonight! We are going out for dinner. I can't even explain how thrilled this makes me. There is nothing more taxing than coming home from work, making dinner, eating dinner, and then cleaning up while your children run around begging you to pay attention to them. While the thought of ditching dishes is always appealing, the thought of coming home the next evening to a dirty kitchen is even less appealing.
As you can see no dishes on Tuesday make me a happy lady!

Numero Dos: Let me preface this next paragraph by putting it out there. I am a nerd. Ok I said it now onto my second reason to be giddy. I love America's Got Talent. I can't explain it. I am not an avid fan of reality TV. I don't watch the likes of American Idol or So You Think You can Dance. During the first season of the show I recall commenting to Chris what a lame summer filler this would be. I am still befuddled as to how I was roped into my first episode. Ever since I have become a religious viewer every summer. There is just something about collapsing on the couch with the family and watching some of the most talented and ridiculous people do their thing. Maybe it is the summer heat that gets to my brain because I believe I am sane the rest of the year round. I laugh and sometimes cry. I become a professional critic along with my daughter Kaylie. I can't help but laugh when Kaylie disapproves of an act. She immedietely throws her arms into the air and crosses them for an "X."

Now that I have that shameful little secret out, I am going to call it a day at the office. I am ready to see my family.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Grownup Kids

Today my little brother turns 23. Happy birthday Allyster!

It is extremely surreal when you realize you and your siblings are all of adult age. Growing up as the oldest of three the siblings were always "the babies" of the family. How strange is it to wake up and realize they aren't quite babies any longer, and maybe they now look at me as "the old one."

This all has me reminiscing about summer and the old days. I have some of the best memories of my brother, sister, and I during summer vacation. Of of course there was the usual yelling, pushing, and tattling that kids do, and then there were all the moments in between. Moments that consisted of jumping on the trampoline so high you felt like you could fly, swimming at the water park for so long our skin becoming tan and wrinkled like a prune, and lunches at CiCi's Pizza because it was cheap and mom needed a break from cooking. Then there were the family vacations. Oh how I miss being a kid and enjoying these without the cares of money or travel logistics!

As much as these sweet memories remain, they slowly lose the clarity and detail that they once possessed. Like dreams fading into a mist, I can still feel the essence, but those little kids come into focus and I realize they are not really children any longer.