Friday, March 21, 2014

The Power of Prayer

I wanted to thank you all for reaching out to me and my family while going through this tough time with my mother.

I wanted to give you all an update on what is going on.
A lot of you know that I've experienced a lot of loss in my life.

My mother is 69. Going on 55. She works full time and can hang like a 30 year old.

My mother will be the only grandparent to our baby girl. She is a retired nurse and quite possibly one of the most intuitive people that I've ever known. She forgives easily but does not forget. She can figure out the recipe of a dish, just by tasting it.
She will give you the shirt off her back. She plays a mean game of baggo and I think she secretly loves my husband more than me.

In January my mom was told by her pullmonary doctor that he was 99% sure that she had lung cancer. He said that there is a 1% chance that it could not be, but he doubted it.

She previously had pneumonia and went to her primary care for a chest xray and this is when they found a growth in her lung. She is mildly claustrophobic and was sent for a CATSCAN. The CATSCAN showed the growth in a much better light (whatever that means).

 My mom was ordered to then have a broncoscopy. 
This is a procedure when they go down your throat into your lungs with a brush wire and scrape cells. While your awake.
These results came back "atypical". The doctor was not happy with the biopsy results and insisted that there was  something there and sent her for a needle biopsy.

I recently found out with in the last few years that my mother struggled with anxiety in her 20's and 30's. She had conquered it after that and had very brief episodes.
This experience brought my mom right back to her 20's and 30's and she started having full blown panic attacks. I have struggled with anxiety for years and watching the strongest women in my life have to deal with this is heart wrenching.

The needle biopsy is when they have you lay on your stomach and insert a needle between your ribs, through your back and aspirate tissue. While your awake.
This biopsy too came back negative for ANY tumor cells.
The doctor insisted on a PETSCAN. If you are not familiar with a PETSCAN, it shows where the "hotspots" are in your body. 
Cancer cells feed off of sugar and have a highly active metabolic rate that shows up on this type of scan. In other words, the doctor is looking all over her body for cancer. 

I don't think any of us slept well for a week.
Finally her doctor calls her back after numerous messages are left and says
"Didn't I tell you that if I didn't find anything, I wasn't going to call?'
Um no. 
He tells her the best news in the world. Her PETSCAN is 100% clean. We now have 3 negative cancer cell tests.

We had an appointment last week in Boston with a thoracic specialist to figure out what this is.
Dr. Wee explained that it is a granuloma but not cancerous and usually stems from being exposed to some type of mold or fungus. Due to it's size he is going to remove it, instead of treating it with medication as it has already gotten a bit bigger. April 9th she is having the surgery and they will be removing the upper left lobe of her lung. Her lungs are functioning at 90% right now, and after the surgery she will be down to 76%. She will just need to recondition.

My mother is that 1%. She is the statistic. Somebody has to be it. I truly believe that all of the positive thoughts and prayers from friends, family, social media including and especially the blog world has helped this miracle happen.
Mom in her "healing" shawl that one of my coworkers gave her.

There is another sweet girl out there that needs all of that positive energy today and her name is AnnaBelle.
She blogs over at The Carolina Country Girl.
She recently shared her story on her blog about being diagnosed with Hodgkin s Lymphoma.
Today is her day to get recognized and to be added to your prayer list.
Lets give Anna all of the positive and supportive vibes that we can! 
Please go visit her blog and leave her some love.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

DIY Laundy Detergent and Entering the Third Trimester!

About a year ago I found a concoction of ingredients online that showed me how to make my own laundry detergent. I had no idea how easy it would be or cost effective or how long it would last.

I purchased a 2 gallon glass gallon container from Target and all of my ingredients from Kmart. Zote soap was the hardest for me to find and Kmart had it, so I finished up my shopping there. What you will need.

1- 4lb 12 oz Box of Borax $4.39
1- 3lb 7oz box of Arm and Hammer Washing Soda
( I bought a 9 lb box and divided it) $18/3= $6
1- 3lb container of Oxy Clean Free $8.99
2- Bars of Pink Zote Soap $2.78
1- 4lb box of Baking Soda $4.00


First start by grating the Zote soap with a cheese grater. This by far is the biggest pain in the ass of all. I grate over a 9x13 glass baking dish. 
Grate one bar at a time and then dump grated soap into a trash bag.
Next add all of the above ingredients into the trash bag.
Take the bag outside and shake it all around. This was the best way that I could figure out how to mix all of it together. 
Cut a corner on the bottom on the trash bag off and hold it over your storage container until it all empties out.
We use a small metal ice scoop to scoop our soap out. You only need 2-4 tablespoons per load.
This batch lasted us about 11 months!!!! I still use regular fabric softener but I will probably be switching to vinegar once the baby comes. You just add a tablespoon of vinegar to the fabric softener hole instead of your regular Downy.
I've used this on our high efficiency washer with no problems and I've also asked the appliance guy at Lowe's if it was safe for front loaders, and he said "yes".
If you have sensitivie skin you can purchase the fragrance free Zote Soap. It is white instead of pink.
Also I've seen some people who add Purex Crystals fabric softener to the mix as well. 

Also today marks the beginning of my 3rd Trimester and I cannot believe it!!!!

I know our baby shower is right around the corner and I am DROOLING over this dress.
With the nursery set up and items being purchased off of the registry this is getting very real very fast. We registered at babies r us and Target and the items are flying off of the list like hot cakes!
I've never changed a diaper in my life until recently. 

Happy Thursday!!!!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Has anyone else contemplating buying their human baby, dog toys? Nursery sneak peek.

How do you come home with a $22 JellyCat stuffed bunny, put it in a wagon, on the floor, and expect your fur child to not think that it's for her.
This whole sharing stuffie things is going to be much harder than we anticipated. Graycie has always loved her stuffies. We call them her "babies". We will tell her "Go get your baby" and she grabs them, snuggles with them and carries them with her. We will not be calling our baby, "baby" when she arrives.

Today, I put the first stuffed animal in the nursery. Graycie grabbed at that bunny's head 4 times and finally won. Wet, matted, 22 dollar bunny goes back into the wagon. This is when I snapped this photo. Apparently, she is just going to admire it. As I was typing this, she did go back up the stairs to the nursery to snoop some more, however the door was shut. Nosey.
I have realized in the past 20 minutes that my human baby and fur child (horse dog) are going to share everything. Food, binkies, and stuffies. Some that are squeaky dog toys stuffies and stuffies that are expensive baby toys. Graycie loves socks, so I'm sure socks and bibs are going to go missing like crazy. 
This has also made me think about how much dog hair my human baby is going to ingest. 
Thank GOD, that I am more of a relaxed person than a germaphobe. 
Has anyone else contemplated buying their human baby dog toys? I mean they squeak, are cheaper and durable....jk. 

Here are a few peeks at the nursery! My sister bought our baby girl her nursery. We are so happy, thankful and beyond excited!!! My sister is going to be the best Auntie ever.
The nursery is from MDB. It is the Mason collection. My girlfriend bought 2 pieces of this exact set for her nursery and we loved it! 
I contemplated on making a rag rug for this room. Coral, cream and grey are a very tough color scheme to pull together and I thought combining all of them in the rag rug would be amazing. But after reading the DIY on pinterest and learning that a 2x3 rug took one woman her entire pregnancy to finish, I gave up. 
This is the sliding barn closet door that the hubs custom made. I am absolutely IN LOVE with this. We still need to find a handle.
There is a closet to the right of it that will have new shelving shortly, however there is a freeze of funds right now due to the central AC being installed. 
 I am also obsessed with these fabric alphabet letters. They are from Yellow Bird + Yellow Beard on Etsy.  The quality and detail on these little guys is amazing. You can get them with magnets on the back also, but I figured for now these plush "stuffies" would work just fine.

I'm not discussing anything about St. Patricks Day today as I did not get to enjoy a green beer.

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