Thursday, April 30, 2009

it's official!

I love online coupon / promotional codes to get discounts!

I hope you might, too...

I am now a Gina Alexander representative!

Enjoy 10% off any purchase (excluding shipping) at Gina Alexander, when you enter the consultant code 9126456

PS - Did I mention that they're 'Made In USA'!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

my new purse just arrived!

How could I not *love* it?

Gina Alexander

Mirror, Mirror...

Those floor mirrors arrived and are 'installed'
(You can see part of the area rug that arrived too)
PS - Restoration Hardware's vendor or supplier is Bassett Mirror...

Also, the curtains were installed in the living room...
I couldn't get the 'overall' picture to come out any brighter...I love this fabric!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Just in case

Just in case one of you are one of the *lucky* 5-10% that make it past one year with your Trisomy 13 or Trisomy 18 child...

Growth charts in both USA and Metric measurements for Trisomy 13 and Trisomy 18 children have been uploaded:

T13 Height (US, Metric)
T13 Weight (US, Metric)

T18 Height (US, Metric)
T18 Weight (US, Metric)

(Here is the original source)

I've had these for a while, but kept forgetting to upload them. (Sorry!)

Saturday, April 25, 2009


I just ordered two of these chairs in a sophisticated striped fabric (it'll be like 8 wks before they arrive).
The striped fabric looks a lot like this, only with a dark brown instead of black...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Vayden and Burke

Sent today...
Hope you enjoy them ladies :-)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Last couple days

J was gracious enough to invite me up to Longbeach, Washington with her. It was the first time since Owen's birth that I've spent a night away from BigBro. (and my first time to Longbeach) I had a head cold, then towards the end of our trip, I started showing the symptoms of pink-eye. I really thought that I had dodged both, then was the last to get them. It was really nice to have some girls only time - and the weather was absolutely perfect on top of it!

Monday, April 20, 2009

My Story (part seven)

Okay, so I re-read some of the other segments of my story just before writing the next one... I try to make sure that I am all-inclusive of the events, conversations and feelings. I am honestly writing this, because I want other expectant moms (that have found themselves in the same or a similar situation) to know that what they are feeling or experiencing is normal (for a not-so-normal circumstance). I know it doesn't make the early grieving or anxieties go away, but isn't it nice to know that someone else survived this ordeal? Reading other's stories helped me feel hope. Hope that we would make it to term. Hope that I would get to see his eyes open and staring at mommy, daddy or big brother. Hope that I would get to hear his weak cry. Hope that I would get to bathe him or change diapers without getting peed on. Hope that we would get to take him home (even if only for a short while). I could go on about my hopes, but honestly this list includes so many things that I didn't get to experience, it makes me too sad.

New to My Story? You might want to start here.

Getting back to Dr. Winkler... Because Ward referred me to him and Ward knows him, I know some things about him that I, otherwise wouldn't. (If Dr. Winkler ever reads this - Ward never uttered a word - professionalism and all. It was Sharon, his wife, that told me.) For privacy reasons, I won't get too specific, but I do know that one of his children died after battling cancer. Dr. Winkler, too, knew what it was like to grieve the loss of hopes and dreams. So, I understood all along, that as much as he tried to be cold and calculating (I imagine him going into work saying over and over to himself, "It's just a job. It's just a job. It's just a job."), it was to hide his own pain. Undoubtedly, seeing my husband and I go through the heart-breaking decisions and early grief brought out his own grief (even though he was trying to shield himself from it). That's why after all of our disagreements, I don't hold it against him. Doctors are not God. They are human too. He falls short, just like I do. I feel that Dr. Winkler turned his back on the lessons that he could have learned from Owen, BigBro, Hubby and I. But, there will most likely be other patients. Maybe one of them will break through his crispy shell. We failed. And, I will say this about him - he has a great sense of humor and a heart of gold. He probably doesn't realize that I could see through the pretense.

Then, there's Dr. Winkler's nurse Trish (Patricia Shaw)... Every appointment, she treated us like we were normal - not a 'sad cause' or freak show. And my favorite part was that she always said Owen's name over and over. She would talk about how his heart was beating well, or how he was kicking up a storm. Dr. Winkler would always just call Owen 'the baby'. The doctor is lucky to have had Trish follow him for (in my estimation) over ten years from hospital to hospital. I remember her saying that she did also moonlight in Labor & Delivery (on weekends and holidays) over at St. Vincent's.

So, while all of the last six chapters of my story were unfolding. We also had some other things running in the background. 1) I redesigned and reorganized my husband's website. No, I didn't do the techie stuff - we hired someone for that. I just took what was existing and completely overhauled it. For privacy reasons, I won't link to it here. This particular project stole countless hours from my days with BigBro in the month leading up to Owen's birth. 2) We had been looking for a new home for our business for a very long time (years, really). And the right place landed right in our lap. We were due to sign some paperwork exactly when we found out about Owen's possible condition (June 18, 2008). We delayed the big decision a bit, but ended up signing the final paperwork just two weeks after Owen was born, then passed. Oh, wait, I'm getting ahead of myself! 3) I was tired of being apathetic to our country's take-over (of the unconstitutional sorts). I had also just become more involved with politics and - was elected as a Precinct Committee Person (PCP), was a delegate to the Oregon Republican Party's State Convention (platform caucus) and attended the Congressional District Convention (where we chose Oregon's delegates to go the the Republican National Convention - which, by the way, was a complete farce / staged dog-n-pony show. And, yes, I refused to put John McCain signs in my yard.). 4) We were doing a small (which really turned out to be huge!) remodel. So, we had dirt, dust and work people everywhere. Think: paint, carpet, lighting (that's permits, electrical and drywall) and a splash of wallpaper. I don't want to get too into it, but the mini-disaster, did end up looking really beautiful. Hmmm... Mini-disaster, isn't that what all home remodels turn out to be?

There are two other short stories here:

1) (Okay, it's a little longer than I thought it would be) Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep (NILMDTS) was suggested to me (by Katie). Which, at first, YES, seemed a morbid thing to do. Take pictures of a baby after s/he might have already died. Plus, there was that whole 'stranger' thing. How could we let a perfect stranger into such a private moment in our lives? (we really are very private people - this blog is so not what I ever would have done pre-Owen). I read the stories here, here and here. After crying over these sad stories and beautiful pictures, I was convinced that, "Yes, I do want a photographer to capture our brief time with Owen". But, still, the stranger thing. Before we moved into our current house, this was our next door neighbor for many years. I'd had Joni take pictures of BigBro before, so I knew she was a really gifted photographer. I hadn't talked to Joni for a few months and couldn't tell her our situation over email, or over the phone. When we had talked over the phone, I learned that she, too, was being molded and shaped during her own trying time. Her father was very very sick and she needed to go, see him and support her family. (He ended up passing away about a month before Owen was born) After hearing that she was traveling a tough road too, I just couldn't dump mine on top of it. I thought, "Well, hey - why not contact the NILMDTS area coordinator & connect with a photographer. I can always purchase a maternity session from them and see how I feel about later inviting this person to the hospital." This is whom we ended up meeting. Denyce was wonderful. She was so caring, and sensitive to our situation. After meeting her and seeing the proofs from our maternity session, I felt good about inviting her to the hospital. Turns out, Denyce and Joni know each other. Joni had signed up to volunteer for NILMDTS and had yet to be called to her first session. Joni ended up joining Denyce and assisting her with lighting and positioning for Owen. What a small world! If, you too, are uncertain about using a NILMDTS photographer - I just can't encourage you enough. Photos are such a tangible memory to have! If you haven't already found it, here's the link to the photo slideshow that was shown at Owen's service.

2) We did scout out a couple different cemeteries in the two months before Owen was born. I was actually leaning towards cremation, but Hubby really wanted to have a place to visit (burial). If we were to have a burial, I really wanted us to all be together (purchase adjoining spots). This is where we ended up. It's the oldest public (non-profit) cemetery in the Portland, Oregon metro area. It also greatly discounts it's fees for the burial (or cremation) of any child under the age of two. We answered many of their questions about our wishes (for them to keep on file) and picked out folders (that's what they hand out at the service). I just couldn't bring myself to pick out a casket. I was tortured with thoughts and guilt over whether I was really holding out hope if I chose a casket before my son was even born. After a week in the hospital, I chose this one. It's the style on the right - only without the Noah's Ark embroidery. I also preliminarily designed (and had gotten a quote from) someone to send out special birth announcements. Since Owen didn't come home from the hospital, a few changes needed to be made - and this is the lady that did them and this is what they ended up looking like. Still, we have yet, to pick out the headstone. I've got a little time. We were planning on having the stone laid at his one-year birthday.

To be continued... (I promise, the next segment will be longer)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Megan & April

Sent today...
I hope you like them ladies!

Update -- June 14, 2009 --
I spent the better part of yesterday investigating why April's momma's blog was entirely deleted. Turns out I sent a care package (including the 'April' bracelet above) to a scam artist! I can't believe the gall of Ms. Rebeccah Rose Beushausen -- aka "B" or "Beccah" -- what on earth would compel someone to make up such an elaborate lie about such an unfortunate circumstance as losing your child? I, for one, pray that she gets the mental help that she needs.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Happy Six Months

So many times this day has come and gone.

The 13th of every month.

This sixth month anniversary hasn't been nearly as emotionally draining as the others. I wish I could explain it, but I can't. Yes, of course I miss him terribly. And, somehow I know I shouldn't be sad -- he's in a much better place. I just wish time weren't so definite. Because of the sun and moon we know exactly what a whole day is, a whole month is and because of the seasons we know what a whole year looks like too. And we are reminded how long that seems. Isn't it weird how we can look back (sometimes years later) and say to ourselves, "What was your rush?", "It may have seemed like forever, at the time, but it was almost nothing". Like, maybe someday (in a very long time), when I am together again with Owen. I will probably say those same things to myself.

What was your rush?

It may have seemed like forever, but it was the blink of an eye.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Happy *bittersweet* Easter... We had planned to go (yesterday) to Heather's house to join in the fun at her big backyard Easter egg hunt. But, BigBro was sort-of showing the symptoms of pink eye Friday night. Then, sure enough, Saturday morning, when he woke up, BigBro's eye was practically glued shut with eye boogies. What followed, were multiple, "Don't touch your eyes!" and "Go wash your hands with soap and water" and "Stop rubbing your eyes. Now you have to go wash your hands again". And, we had a big long wait at the urgent care clinic. For those of you that don't know (or haven't thought about it) - anytime you go to a new doctor's office, there's always a whole lot of paperwork to fill out. And, for pediatrics - the forms almost always seem to ask for the names and date of birth of all siblings. On this form, immediately below the siblings table it asked (and I'm paraphrasing here, because the exact phrase isn't etched into my mind), "Have any of your children died?", followed by two check boxes - No or Yes. Why, do these forms ask about siblings? What is the significance? Isn't it enough to know if the patient has a history of health problems, allergies and what the present complaints (and medications taken) are?

Can you say, "ouch"? And I managed to hold it together the whole time.

On our way to pick up BigBro's prescription I called & updated our RSVP to Heather's as a "So sorry, but we can't come. I'm sure that no one else wants pink-eye."

BigBro was so disappointed.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

designing a bedroom

What goes with this bed...
this armoire
this chaise (only imagine no skirt, with turned legs & chrome casters + masculine houndstooth fabric)
this nightstand
this lamp (in an oil-rubbed bronze finish)
this lamp (silver sage shade)
and a lamp w/tray, curtains and sheers that you'll have to wait until I take pictures (because Pottery Barn doesn't sell them any longer)? I would have taken pictures today, but first I have to clear the mountain of laundry off the chaise - and make our bed.

I just added this pendant (the larger one in the first pic w/ the shade color shown in the second pic)

and an antique chinese bench (not an online purchase - can you believe it?)

I am trying to decide what to do for two different art displays. I really like the idea of several of these wall plaques grouped together. I also like some of the blik wall decals, but who knows what I'll end up with. Suggestions welcome. I'll post something when I've picked out something.

Friday, April 10, 2009


Shannon- Thank you for such a wonderful 'Thank you'! I was soooo surprised, when I opened my mailbox... You made my day :-)
See, I'm using those adorable stamps already!

BigBro turned four and we had a big birthday celebration last Saturday. His birthday was a big hit! Literally, I suppose. We had a blue convertible-car-shaped pinata. All the kids had several big whacks and the thing just wouldn't break open. Finally, an adult had to take a couple swings at it and then, candy and toys dumped out. We also had a great magician! He entertained adults and kids alike. I'm so glad that we had nice weather, because we were able to play outside too. It took a while to recover from the festivities - I finally finished cleaning our house yesterday. (pictures coming soon)


I finally picked six photos out of the 100+ pictures of Owen (our NILMDTS photographer was Denyce at Something Blue Photography) to order. They came in quickly and I just picked up the frames and mats. I think we'll hang them this weekend.

It's so odd. The waves of grief. The last two weeks have been so much better than the previous two. Sometimes I understand and other times I can't find the reason why.


On to, my next 'project'... Another phase of our house. We have lived in this house for about a year and a half and we have done quite a bit to make it 'ours'. And, yet there is still so much more to do! If it'll give you any hint at all - we lived in our last house for nine years. Over that time, we slowly did things to make it 'ours'. When I look back at it, I'd say we did everything to that house. You name it, we re-did it.

Most of my friends are not really 'into' design, so - this is just me, keeping busy with something I like. I've added a different links list - 'design links'. I know Heather will enjoy them. (In case you didn't know - I don't really watch TV, but have to admit, I love Candice Olson.)

Currently, in my living room is an area rug. Yep, that's it. A few accessories we brought over from our old house on the shelves, but no furniture. It's a patchwork hair-on cow hide rug that I bought here. If you think you might want one, I have only one piece of advice - these are best for 'pet free' homes. I just can't keep our dog from laying on it. I think it's the smell.
So, here's what is coming

Some curtains that I won't be able to post a picture of until they arrive. They'll be on rods with neato square finials...
Oooohh - and this sumptuous settee will be coming soon too.
Then, there's our dining room... Oddly, it's actually much closer to being complete. For starters, here's the rug.

Here's the chandelier

My dining room table and chairs are no longer manufactured and I only have a picture of the set in my old house. After everything's put together, I'll take a picture of the finished room (it'll be at least six weeks).

These are pictures from the manufacturer's website, so these pieces are still in their product offering, but also in my current dining room are

this sideboard (ack! I wish Blogger would let me resize the image!)

and this buffet (just the bottom part - I didn't want a china hutch)
And, currently on order are some other curtains that I can't show you a picture of (until they arrive) and the same rods w/ neat-o square finials (same as the living room above) and a really great floor mirror.
more design stuff later, after I've pieced together more...

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Prayers answered, more prayers needed

Prayers have allowed Kristine, Luke and big sister Kyla to have 13 wonderful days with baby Leah. Won't you please pray-- say a special prayer, right now, that she will continue to know love from her family and never know pain or suffering? That God continues to grace Leah and her family with peace, love and comfort?