Saturday, January 30, 2010


...or lack thereof. After all that worry, money and worst of all suffering on Ryker's part, we now have no answers. Luckily, there is nothing wrong with Ryker that they can find, but that leaves us with nothing to help the little guy.
He is now on a round of antibiotics to see if he perhaps has too many "good" bacteria. We also now have a whole team of nurses, occupational therapists, nutritionists, etc. on our side. The wonderful Up to 3 program through USU (which I worked for for about 8 months) will be at our house starting Friday. This is great because hopefully they can help Ryker (and help me help Ryker) learn to eat again. He is down to one "staple" in his diet- raisins. He literally won't let anything else near his mouth. He also won't feed himself anything else either. He may eat a few goldfish or captain crunch berries (never ever the yellow bits of captain crunch!) Really, he is not eating anything that will help him grow. Pediasure is our BFF now and hopefully we will get him through this rough time.
He is also not sleeping in his own bed anymore. I KNOW!!! I was told and told again- once they are there they never leave. I also knew that my son was so uncomfortable he needed reassurance at night....tough situation. Once we are through the antibiotics, I am going to try to retrain him and get him sleeping through the night (I know, pity party on my part- I have not slept through the night since he was born....15 months to be exact!)
Thanks to my dear mom, that statement above is not true. She took Ryker last night and he did great with just him and Grandma. Dustin and I just relaxed and slept. YAY!
I also found a job. I will start next month. It is for a company in Malad (boo for the long drive) I will be working with children with behavioral problems (sometimes adults too). Helping people function better (do you think I could counsel myself?!) It pays really well and I will only be there 2 days a week which I will schedule myself. I love that my whole family is within 20 minutes so Ryker will be in great hands when I go.
House plans are still nonexistent. The lot stuff is taking Starting in March may be a longshot, but that is what we are shooting for.
Wow...what a long post! Sorry about that! Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tamale Time

Ahhh...I totally forgot to share with you another project that I completed like 2 weeks ago! We have a major obsession with taquitos and other mexican snacks at our house! Problem- they are like $5 a box and we were buying 2-3 a, I decided to try my hand at making tamales. Just wanted to share my experience because with that much time and energy going into these things, I was afraid that I would hate them. FYI: I am in love!

These are not mine, but similar.

I had a lot of frozen pork and chicken that needed to be used so that was practically free? I had to buy quite a few things but the spices, oil and masa can be used quite a few more times. So, I used the recipe found here. Super easy, although the rolling instructions confused me. So, here is another way to roll them at Make and Takes, and the next recipe I am going to try.

I ended up with like 4 dozen frozen tamales, 2 bags of frozen meat and 2 dozen we ate fresh. This was not too hard, except the fact that I had a toddler hanging on me the whole time. At least we will be enjoying our tamales for months :)

So, go on out and make yourself a whole bunch of tamales and share your results!

Just Something I Whipped Up...

I have fallen in love with Tatertots and Jello blog and all the delish burlap projects. I found a cute wreath that I knew I needed to try. Using my fabric scraps, spare embellishments, a preused wreath form and just $1.50 worth of remnant burlap (with leftovers to spare!) I came up with this Valentine's inspired wreath.

Go on over to Tatertots and Jello and get some inspiration!

Oh, oh...I haven't shared my house numbers that I made in the fall. I needed them to be able to be seen from the road for my lovely AVON delivery service and everyone else that cannot find my they are huge. Just used my cricket and some leftover vinyl. My wreath does obscure them but really, it's cute enough to get away with that! Also, ignore the icky looking door...we rent :)

And... a picture of Ryker. With crazy hair. And milk all over his face.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Little Trooper

Yesterday was Ryker's scope. It was a very long day for all of us, but oveall it went well. He was a trooper and was back to eating his french fries by 8 o'clock.

We left Logan at 9:30, arrived at noon, he went in at 1:40 and I was back with him by 3:40 and we left at 6 He had some medicine before he left that made him calm and it was a good thing because he was not having anything to do with anyone but mommy. I love Primary Children's (as much as you can love a hospital.) The anestesiologist came and put Ryker in a wagon with a toy and then pulled him into the procedure room. As soon as he rounded the corner and said "we'll see you later", I was out of there. I would have ran down the hall and scooped Ryker up if I had heard him cry when he realized we weren't there.

As far as results go, there was nothing visibly wrong. He has a couple places with bumps, but those can just be normal. Dr. Wu took lots of biopsies to check if his villi were abnormal, if he has enzymes to digest sugar, if he has a chronic infection....

Overall, we were impressed. There were 4-5 nurses with him the whole time. We were the only ones there because he was the last procedure. Results should be in next week so hopefully there is a magic pill that will make him feel like a million bucks.

Keeping my Sanity

...or at least attempting to.
This has been a hard few months. Even though Ryker is SO much fun and I love him oodles, the stress, sleeplessness and constant worry are really hard to cope with. To keep my hopes up, I have had to find stuff to do to keep my mind off of everything. Oh, add in the stress of building a house and finding a job and you have one super stressed, often crazy wife and mother.
So... I turn to:
Scrapbooking. We made cute covers for 43 CDs for Kristi's Young Women...beautiful songs to go with their theme-Joshua 1:9, look it up! Great message, "Be Not Afraid".
Ignore the poor quality pictures in this post. Most were taken on my phone.

They turned out great and I really did love helping out!
Along with this, I am taking a 7 week course in Photoshop and hopefully I can learn how to actually make my pictures look good! We worked on this picture last night. I didn't get finished but I went from


To This :)
Crafting. Making 3 jewelry holders for my mother-in-law, Kristi and I. I LOVE THEM and they are easy and cheap (under 6 dollars total). Let me know if you would like a tutorial or info on how I made them.

Bargain shopping. I love after Christmas sales and I love the dollar store. Put them together and you get these B.E.A.Utiful decorations for our tree next year :) Can you believe all this for under $4.50! Regularly $18! I also picked up some huge blue sparkly ball ornaments for 25 cents! I can't wait for Christmas!

I recently found a few new websites for coupons and deals and have picked up 12 bottles of salsa for 14 cents and hamburger helper. Dustin loves this and it makes my life easy plus... it covers up the taste of our free elk burger :)

Food storage. This is where the salsa comes in....I can make like 4 meals a month with each jar so I am getting an awesome deal. At Smiths this week, I also picked up some Dinty Moore stew (a favorite for both meals and camping) for $1.79 each. I think they are like twice that normally. I also have started stocking up on water, both bottled (2.50 at Smiths) and filling my empty apple juice jugs. I found a great website: and have one of my 72 hour kits completed! short, those are my stress relievers, but I would really just like Ryker to FEEL BETTER so we can all get a break. What is most heartbreaking to me (other than his pain) is the fact that I don't know what a "normal" baby is like and fear that I can't have more children because I could not do this again...*sigh* let me know what you do for stress relief and any tips on bargain shopping or food storage would be greatly appreciated.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Just wanted to do a quick update. It is luck of the draw as to how Ryker is feeling and how he sleeps. We are hanging in there though...
We have a scope scheduled for him on Wednesday the 20th at noon. I can't feed him anything for 24 hours! Just clear liquids and then nothing at all except water for 12 hours before then no sippy to help him out on the way down....poor little guy!
The thoughts of turning a crying, scared little guy over to the nurses who will then poke him and make him fall asleep literally makes me sick to my stomach. I really don't know if I can do it! Although it isn't "surgery", he still is being put under anesthesia and I still have to let me little boy go for a time. I can't even go to a movie or out for the night because I hate to be away from him...
I sure hope something comes out of this that can help him because he does not deserve any of it. It makes me so anxious to think about how all this will affect him in the future. What if he can't eat like the others? What will it do to him if he can't have sleepovers with his friends? What stigma will be attached to him if he is on medication and sick? :(
The things I am doing now just seem so inadequate. Everyday I feel more and more insufficient. I think "Someone else can do this better and make him feel better and make Ryker grow into a better child and adult." I guess my solace is knowing that I am his comfort. I alone can make him feel better when he is sick. I am just going to have to let the "supermom" ideals fall away for a time and just offer comfort to this little man.
Wish us luck and prayers are always appreciated. Thank you for all of your support.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A Little Longer...

I keep telling myself "hold on, just a little bit longer. Things WILL get better!" Today is not one of those days. It is not my day, this sucks and I want OUT!

This week has SUCKED! Ryker is getting worse. Horrible pain everynight with nothing that we can do to help. He "sleeps" in our bed and is waking earlier and earlier to do so. Tossing, turning, hitting his head on our noses and the headboard just trying desperately to get away from the pain- you get the picture. Little sleep, little hope, little relief, more worry and more crankiness during the day have left me worn right out. On top of that, this situation is steadily going downhill even though we are doing everything we can. Give. Me. A. Break!

Got a call from the doctor (who I think is the best there is). He said that Ryker's tests show that he has some inflammation going on in his intestines and it could be caused by either a chronic infection, Crohn's disease or some other disorder. what do we do now? My little guy has to be put under anesthesia and have some scopes done. When? I don't know-but I already dread that day. So... now we wait, and wait and wait because you know- we will have the scope and it will take up to a week for results to come back and another week to actually get treatment (if there is any). This, in my book isn't a light at the end of the tunnel...just a shot in the dark hoping that he will somehow get relief.

I worry so much that this will be forever- like my Grandma says "it has already been forever because it was yesterday, today and tomorrow. That is forever!" The thoughts of putting him under anesthesia and even more pain make me sick to my stomach. The thoughts that he will live like this forever is also eating away at me. Alright- have to stop myself because I could go on and on...

I am going to rant a bit, so please avert your eyes if you aren't wanting to listen. I understand. Parenting is supposed to be hard- I get that! But this? THIS? The worrying, the fear, the sadness, the hopelessness- they are overtaking the precious time I have with Ryker as a baby. There isn't a second during the day that I am not worrying about his eating, sleeping, growth, pain or even the possibility that he might not grow up. No one knows what this is like because well, no one that I know has gone through this. All the kids I know are healthy. Not a one that doesn't sleep and eat. What am I doing wrong? <---there is my rant. I am finished...for now.

Someone, please let me off this ride- it is not fun and is just picking up speed.

Monday, January 4, 2010


I have caught up a lot so check below if you want to know how Christmas was for us :)

His tummy is still bad. Our Primary Children's appointment gave us a lot of hope. We are waiting for test results and going back in for another test Friday. The doctor is testing for pancreatic enzyme disfunctions (would require medication), celiac disease (would require special diet) and cystic fibrosis again (this is not good and scares me, so we won't talk about it).
I think he is also allergic to pomegranites. He had an allergic reaction with terrible, bleeding diaper rash while I wasn't there :( He seems okay today, but his little bum is still burned :(

Enjoying being home and not in school. I am looking into a part-time job and haven't heard back from the three places I applied. I am loving being a stay at home mom and loving my time with Ryker!

Working hard but enjoying his time off. He has been snowmobiling a few times and loved his time off and playing with Ryker. They are best pals and I love watching their relationship!


Oh wow, I must have been really busy lately- funny thing is, my appointment book looks like this ____________________ completely blank!! No school, no work- just fun!

We have been having a whole lot of fun lately! New Years Eve brought lots of fun at Dustin's parents. We have quite a puzzle obsession lately and also have been having fun playing spoons and oh darn!

New Years Day brought, guess what, MORE games at Grandma Nielsen's! We had good food and lots of fun. I love being with everyone so much- it is too bad that we are always so busy.

Like Dustin and I always tell each other- "there is never enough time or money!"

Dustin has found a little time out in the powder- Ryker thought he would help daddy get ready to go snowmobiling.

I have learned since Ryker was born to not take for granted or waste time EVER!

Christmas 2009

Yay horray! Santa came! He brought Ryker a stick horse, hut and mini tractors! He loved it all and hides in his hut all the time.

We had a very busy Christmas (as usual). Grandma Shanna's party on the Sunday before Christmas was fancy ;) Grandpa Jay's party on Christmas Eve was crazy as always! Grandma Nielsen's on Christmas morning did not disappoint. Grandma Baers was a nice place to catch up.
We really enjoyed our first Christmas that Ryker actually, well kindof understood!
I love being around family and friends and the wonderful feeling that Christmas brings.

What a Big Girl!

Our niece Nikelle turned 3 just before Christmas. I cannot believe how big she is and how fast her first 3 years have flown by! To celebrate we went sledding at Old Main- my neurotic, worry wart self has a hard time watching people fly down the hill toward cars without anything to stop them, but it was fun :)
Birthday Girl!

I love this cute picture! Kristi, Colby and Kelle

Us! Ignore my high heel boots- I did not know we were going sledding :)

All Bundled Up!