Saturday, February 28, 2015

Ryan's Home!

Ryan Decker is home in just a few hours from a week long work trip to Mexico!
And this wife is THRILLED!!
His best text to me at 5:45 a.m. Colorado time, "Babe, I love Mexican food"
SO CUTE!  I'll update about what he was doing there and any pictures he might have snagged later this week.  For now we are grateful he is back on the ground and doing well.
Silly boy in his bright raincoat.  He actually trekked out in the snowstorm last weekend to get us a Redbox DVD from up the street
Have a great end to your weekend!
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:19

Friday, February 27, 2015

Healthy Pregnancy Snack Ideas

Let's just put it out first 13 weeks were fairly miserable.  I had good days so I can't complain too much but the nausea just knocked me off my feet for days at a time! 
That made it impossible to eat, which made me feel worse, and the cycle was so vicious.
I have a few theories (#2 in that link) about why my nausea was so intense.  But despite those first hard months,  I am enthusiastically focusing on eating healthfully and holistically once every 1-2 hours to keep my blood sugar levels stable and get in enough calories and nutrients
Here are my favorite daily snacks...
Avocado, pretzels, and carrot sticks
The pretzel is extra yummy dipped in the avocado and the carrots add a crunch/slightly sweet element to the snack
Familia Swiss-Muesli with greek yogurt and berries
We actually found this muesli when we lived in Saudi Arabia and LOVED it then.  It's full of hearty whole grain oats, dried apples, shredded whole wheat and rye, raisins, ground hazelnuts and roasted almonds
If you've ever tried these you know they have about 5 simple ingredients.  So yummy and full of lots of delicious vitamins and nutrients
I'll make a trail mix of sorts with almonds, cashews, walnuts and even pretzels or pumpkin seeds if I have them on hand.  This is wonderful for getting in essential fatty acids.
Fruit/Veggie Smoothies
This is how I survived those first few weeks!  The pictured smoothie is greek yogurt, kefir, strawberries, banana, clementines, and orange juice.  Normally I throw in an enormous handful of spinach, chia seeds, and coconut oil too.
 Greek Yogurt
The sugar content might be a little higher than I like, but I love Chobani yogurts.  I couldn't stomach just eating a big cup of plain yogurt so I needed some extra fluff in there.  The strawberry/banana, raspberry, and peach are divine with fruit or nuts mixed in
I hope these help you or give you a few, but diverse, menu ideas to select from if you are having trouble.  Healthy eating is delicious and long as you feel up to actually eating ;)
I've got a healthy salmon salad and leftover smoothie in the fridge waiting for me for lunch!  Happy eating!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Pregnancy Week 13

What does Grumples and Poppy's big hairy mugs have to do with me being 13 week preggo?
Um, nothing.
But I was sufficiently sick and miserable all weekend and we didn't even get a dang weekly picture.  That one time that I thought my energy was going back up...was a little pre-enthusiastic.  I had a few good days but was mostly sick last week (and earlier this week).
Oh well. 

Alas, I shall still complete the weekly questionnaire!
Week 13 Pregnancy Questionnaire

Baby size: A peach

My weight gain so far: 3 lbs, no increase this week

Food Favs: Cheerios, big berry smoothies, walnuts, pretzels, citrus, Lean Cuisine's Spinach Mushroom pizza (ha!) lemon drops, greek yogurt, salad, bell peppers, popsicles, chocolate chip cookies

Foods hates:  This week I particularly want to murder the person that discovered ground turkey--still just EW!!! I'm still not keen at all to chili, garlic, onion, greasy, most meats, refried beans, and cheese

3 Pros of Week 13:
1. Starting Tuesday I was a little less nauseous and even went on a hike with the doodles!
2. Ryan sent me to get a wonderful prenatal massage that made me feel like a million bucks
3. I started eating eggs again recently and that is really encouraging me that someday I won't despise all food

3 Cons of Week 12:
1. I can really feel my joints loosened up and seem to easily over-extend things
2.  My appetite, I fear, will never return.  I truly eat for the calories but not for the taste :(
3. Peeing 5-6 time in the night

Best moment of the week:
 I ate a hardboiled egg!  And I went out to lunch with my mom and Ryan and could order something off the menu!  It was super plain, but restaurants made me so queasy for awhile.  Win.
He is in the habit of texting to ask how our little on is doing during the day which just makes me so happy!  He got a little progress done on a map that will be hung in the nursery and has been researching his life away on safe carseats and strollers.

Monday, February 23, 2015

On Being Brave

When I sat down for coffee a week or so ago with a close, very sweet friend I knew I would be learning something new.  I always do with this lady!  

We started talking about my pregnancy, and of course while I knew this already, we wound our way into how they are also hoping and trying for a little one too.  And so far it's proven to not be their time just yet.

I told her how grateful I was for her sharing.  Because she didn't just say that they were trying...

...but that she WANTED this.  A lot.  A whole lot.

I was so moved by her bravery to own that.  It takes so much more courage to say I want this, I'm hoping for this, my heart's set on this, I'm invested in this...

Isn't that much more the risky, vulnerable stance than to try and nonchalantly pretend it has no real hold on our heart?

It goes for every area of life really.  Not just pregnancy.  I told this sweet friend how grateful I was for her transparency and willingness to let me into her heart.  Because perhaps if the thing we want doesn't come to fruition, having taken the risk of being brave means we get to have a shield around us of people cheering us on to more courage and to hold us up when the disappointment is crippling.

Be brave today.  In some small way.

I've been blessed with a solid example already

Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD!

Psalm 31:24

Saturday, February 21, 2015

1st Trimester Pregnancy Must-Haves

As I sat down to write this I realized how "first-world" this post really must really sound...shoot.

Well these aren't essentials (aka ya know, water and food), but they are a few little comforts that have made my first 13 weeks a tiny bit smoother.  And maybe will help you if you're preggers or know someone who is too.

 Because believe me when I say there were a few rough patches!

Ryan will attest.  Amen.

First up...

Decaf coffee.  Bless thine inventor.  For reals people, load this up with milk and honey and you can turn any bad day right around!

Lemon drops and spearmints.  There was many an hour where it was all I could do to just get one of these down.  Such wonderful, mild flavors.

Pregnancy Tea. This tea is so mild and comforting.  I like it best early in the morning with raw honey.

Soft maternity shirts.  My mom has been the most enthusiastic about making sure I am well stocked in maternity clothes even though my belly is just barely poking out.  Thanks mama!  I am LIVING in this shirt from Target's Liz Lange line.  

With leggings and boots it is perfection.

 Mother To Be tea.  A friend gave me this box of tea (along with amazing stack of pregnancy books) and I really enjoy it!  Mild, red raspberry and spearmint that's refreshing and super yummy anytime of day.

Mama Bee products.  Another dear friend got me these as a gift and I LOVE them!  Adore actually.  The belly butter is so thick and rich.  And the body oil smells like a lemon drop.  Both are amazing post-shower.

 So just a few little goodies here that I'll be indulging in all pregnancy long actually! 

Happy products = happy mama

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Lunch and This Week

Earlier this week I got out of class a little early and Ryan also had a free lunch hour!  So we went to Mod Market right near his work and had a great time!  I love quality time with this guy.  

He told me about a new program he is helping develop at work and we processed where our little one is at in their growth this week.  I filled him in on school and what had happened in my day.  Even 45 minutes together was so connecting!

Since so little food actually sounds good right now still, I was thankful that a big salad was at least not totally repulsive.  And this place is so fresh that it all went in pretty easily.

Ryan enjoying a big salad with chicken, avocado, black beans, and corn

I had the Thai chicken sweet potato salad

After lunch the doodles were needing some exercise so we headed to a very snowy park for a little hike around.  They promptly got a snow beard and icy paws so we didn't stay longer than 20 minutes.

They were happy babies.

I finally made it to the gym for a real work out!  I've gotten in spurts of mile walks or half workout and then gotten too sick to carry on.  But yesterday we rock climbed for 30 minutes and then did 20 minutes of some great cardio.  I feel great today but was pretty wiped last night!

The rest of the week is full.  I'm bringing dinner to brand new baby Isaac Stewart (well, to his parents but he is the highlight!).  Friday I have clinical all day and Ryan is of course busy at work.  We are looking forward to lunch with Tyler and Anna and their kiddos on Saturday if it doesn't snow too much!

The weather is predicted to dump up to a foot of snow in Golden since we are in the foothills.  While I love the thought of getting snowed we still want to do lunch, get in a snowshoe hike, and get to church still.  We shall see!

Happy rest of your week :)

"You are the God who sees me," for she said, "I have now seen the One who sees me"

Genesis 16:13

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Finding Out and Week By Week...

We found out on December 19 that I was pregnant.  It was my last day of quarter 5 and I had two long, important finals to take.  We were suspicious that I was preggers or a few reasons...

I'm talking sleeping 12-14 hours a night and if I couldn't get that much sleep I was dying for a 2 or 3 hour nap.  I have never experienced anything like it.  Ryan was running our household like a champ  while I slept my life away and I am so grateful for him.

His most suspicious moment was one night when I came home and went to bed at 6:30 pm, woke up to each 2  slices of pizza and 4 cookies, and promptly went back to sleep for 12 hours straight...HA!!

 Anyone who knows me knows that is SO unlike me!

Oh my I was SO sick in this picture.  Ryan let me pull the doodles up on the couch to help me feel better

One of the best parts of this whole story is that I hadn't even missed my period yet before I took a pregnancy test at home.  Ryan and I had plans to take one together in the coming weekend if I was late. But I had a spare test at home and some extra time on my hands so I took the test myself a day early.


I almost fell of my seat and was in total disbelief.  I picked up two more tests from Target since I knew my engineer husband would want to "make sure" and also some cute baby onsies for him to open up and figure it all out.

He opened up the onsies and my positive test from earlier...his response made me laugh so loud.  He looked at everything and with huge eyes said, "Is this for real?"  Then he proceeded to do some kind of fertlity dance around our kitchen and couldn't stop smiling.

It was such a precious moment.

We found out just in time to share the news with our families at each Christmas celebration.  That was something we were just peeing out pants with excitement over!  It was the perfect time of year to find out.

So we shared at 4 weeks with our families and then waited another 2-3 weeks to start sharing with close friends.

Overall, people have celebrated, screamed, hyperventilated, cried, cheered, and covered us with love and prayers. We were overwhelmed with support.

As far as week by week experiences go I have been keeping a little journal to I don't forget:

Week 5
Sx: Tired, tired, tired.  At 5 weeks and 3 days I was crushed with morning all day sickness.  UGH!  No vomiting but extreme nausea that laid me out flat.  And super tender breasts (TMI!)
Cravings: Salt, salt, salt and citrus.  I wanted oranges, clementines, lemonade, smoothies, and salty food
Aversions:  White cheddar cheese, eggs, and Subway sandwiches.  UGH!!!!
Preparation:  We decided to deliver at St. Joe's with a midwife.  We both had the week after Christmas off and toured several facilities and did lots research.  We also bought a crib and get it set up.  We are on top of things!
Ryan:  He is just over the moon about this baby!  He kisses my stomach, talks to it, and literally treats me like a princess.  He has been an outstanding husband and daddy-to-be!

Baby gifts from my parents for my birthday

Week 6:
Sx: I've learned how to manage the nausea with very, very frequent eating.  I literally set my alarm for 2:00 am, 4:30 am, and 6:00 am to eat.  I keep smoothies, crackers, soup, greek yogurt and citrus on hand or at the beside.  The hunger and blood sugar drop hits me like a ton of bricks and I have to be prepared or I am miserable for 45 minutes trying to catch up
Cravings: Salt :)  More citrus-I could live in an orange grove for the rest of my life and be happy.  Something may sounds good one minute and th next I want to throw it up.  So it's hard to say what sounds good
Aversions:  More like what doesn't make me sick?? Eggs, cheese, greasy anything, UGH I can't go on...
Ryan:  We picked out our baby room color (the lighest green/turquoise) and he is so ready to get painting.  He is particularly interested in our nursery rocker so he's been shopping around for that.  He keeps taking the BEST care of me and is so attentive.  He is just thrilled and his excitement grows by the week!

SO SICK Week 7-10 so no real journal here
-Nausea, migraines with vomiting, weakness, fatigue.  These weeks were hard with few good days

Week 11
Sx: Middle of the night snacking has re-started so I'm getting used to that again.  I'm still very tired, sleeping 9-12 hours a night.  Nausea is on and off.
Cravings: Citrus, pretzels, yogurt, fruity popsicles, crackers.  "Crave" is such a weird word since food just sounds terrible and I'm only eating for the calories
Aversions:  EVERYTHING!  It seems like.  Eggs, cheese, grease, refried beans, chili, ground turkey
Ryan:  He started reading "The Happiest Baby On the Block" and is busy learning from iPhone apps and reading.  We saw our baby on an ultrasound this week and he proclaimed it was the coolest thing he's ever seen!

Ryan brushing up on his baby book reading

I just don't want to forget all these details in the future!  It's so fun to record it here to be able to reflect on later.  More posts to come.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Pregnancy Week 12 [updated!]

*I edited this to include my week to week pregnancy survery!*

I wanted to get this picture up before I forgot!  All I can say is that weeks 5 to 11 were ROUGH.  Nauseous every day, no appetite, beyond tired.  The nausea is what was killing me, my goodness!  It literally was like the flue for 6 straight weeks.

But some ladies have it so much worse and I won't complain because it seems week 12 is my golden hour :)

My appetite is definitely not fully back.  I eat to avoid blood sugar drops and nausea but on the whole I am awaiting the day that something sounds delicious!

We are so grateful to be growing and loving this little one already.  It blows our minds that a little Decker is living inside this uterus of mine!  Just WOW!  We are crazy about him/her already.

Week 12 Pregnancy Questionnaire

Baby size: A large plum!

My weight gain so far: 3 lbs

Food Favs: Citrus, lemon drops, greek yogurt, big salads, bell peppers, swiss museli, cold cereal, fruit, turkey sandwiches with cream cheese, popsicles

Foods hates:  Hmmm...what DOESN'T make this list??  Ground turkey, chili, soups, garlic, onion, greasy anything, fast food, so so so many things

3 Pros of Week 12:
1. Feeling stronger and a little less nauseous
2. Have the energy again to climb, hike, do yoga, get the dogs to the park
3. Wearing leggings and lots of comfortable soft clothing

3 Cons of Week 12:
1.  Peeing so many times during the night
2.  No real appetite still
3. No other big complaints!

Best moment of the week:
 Well this happened last week but we got to see our little one swimming around in there on our first ultrasound!  We were over the moon and went out to celebrate at our favorite restaurant after.

Ryan: He has been so thrilled with everything and is taking excellent care of me!  He is working on a frame for hte baby room, has already assembled a crib and a rocker, and looks up new info on the baby every day.  He is the greatest dad already!

Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him.

Psalm 127:3

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Evergreen Dog Park

Saturday it was a gorgeous day and I was feeling good.  HALLELUJIAH!  I'll write more about it later, but I have felt like I have the flu for the last 6 weeks.  This little one is giving me a run for my money!

Anyway, we decided to head out for an adventure with our babies, the Bolts and their dog Bella (from Poppy's litter).  We have been hearig so much about this dog park in Evergreen so it was something we were all excited about.

It's a gorgeous huge park with trails and a large open run.  Dog heaven!  Our doodles had the greatest time.

How can you have so much doodle love in one picture??

Ryan and his favorite Bolts

We clearly were loving the sunshine!

There must have been another 20 dogs there.  Everyone was so friendly and our doodles made fast friends with everyone

Have you ever seen such a gorgeous dog park?  Trees, trails, boulders, and of course a million new scents for puppy noses

It was such a blessing to be out in the sunshine, hiking around, and seeing our pups enjoy life so much.  Plus we had a great drive and quality time with Matt and Katie!

  "But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you;
or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you.
Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this?
  In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.

Job 12:7-10

Friday, February 13, 2015

Pregnancy Pictures Weeks 5-11

Every Saturday marks a new week for us in pregnancy.  It's a great day to make sure we get a picture since it's normally a slower day.  Ryan is a great photographer :)

What I've learned from these pictures...I wear a lot of blue.  Ha!

I have to be totally honest and say that while I'm pumped for a cute preggo belly, it is quite a shift for me to get used to a growing belly and a softer body.  Ryan and I really value health and making sure we are in good shape, not only for ourselves but so we feel good and are around for a long time in the future. 

 While I would still say I'm in good shape while pregnant, getting bigger is taking some adjustment mentally.

I'm gaining healthy weight; 3 lbs so far!  They recommend 1-4 lbs in the 1st trimester so I'm right on track. But this changing body it's still just something to surrender to the Lord and make sure that I'm valuing health and not appearance.  

Any other pregnant ladies deal with this?

I can't wait to keep recording and seeing the little one grow!  And get to wear those comfortable maternity pants I keep hearing so much about :)

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. 

Romans 12:2

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Announcing Baby Decker!!

When I mentioned in my last post that we have some exciting events was baby news!

We are absolutely over the moon to announce that our little one will be making their appearance sometime around 8.29.15

 We found out about this sweet baby in December and have just been bursting to tell everyone.  We shared in person with our friends and family over the last few weeks and yesterday on Facebook made it even more public.

We laughed that once it's on Facebook, it's "official" ha!

The doodles helped us announce on Facebook!  And my body surprised me by showing a little bump already at 11 weeks.

Ryan has been busy keeping me fed, rested, and well taken care of.  I'm bouncing between good days, nausea, and sleeping 12 hours a night.  Pregnancy does a number on your body!

We have been thanking the Lord non-stop for this gift and honor.  It is a blessing beyond description to know we are parents and are entrusted with this life.  We are trying even now to lean on the Lord's wisdom and capabilities because we just aren't able with out Him.

More updates to come...belly pictures, week by week happenings and a few back stories about how we found out and such :)

SO happy to finally be blogging about this and recording our baby journey in this spot.

“I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.  So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.”

1 Samuel 1:27-28

Sunday, February 8, 2015

February Events

There is always a busy part to every quarter of school.  Quarter 6 the busiest is NOW!  After this week I am in for some pretty easy sailing which I am so so grateful for.  Tomorrow I have two presentations and test and Tuesday another presentation and quiz.  I can't wait for Tuesday to be over!

I am working with three of my absolute favorite classmates-three women that are encouraging to each other, hardworking and so dedicated.  It makes all the difference to have a motivated group!

I spend a good chunk of time at a local Starbucks drinking coffee and cranking out projects

I busted out an old crockpot recipe from 2012 from this blog! I was visiting a friend later in the week and needed a quick treat to bring.  It's so so so so so simple and these cinnamon almonds are always a hit.  You should try them out next time you need a simple snack.

But be careful, they are addictive

 The weather in Colorado has bee phenomenal and record breaking!  It was 75 degrees on Saturday so Ry, the doodles and I all got out for a hike.  I have been trying to get those doodle babies to the park everyday for some much needed running.  

The vitamin D is good for us all :)

Busy exploring uncharted territory

This is one of my favorite pictures and memories from this week!  One of my dearest friends, Hannah, bravely birthed her baby boy on January 26.  I got to take Daniel and Hannah a little lunch and some goodies this last week and meet baby Isaac.  He is so scrumptious!

I have known Hannah since the first week of my freshmen year of college.  We went to Russia together, did college ministry together, and have enjoyed so many new stages of life.  It's such a gift to see her become a mama!

Doesn't she look amazing??  10 days post birth and is glowing still

And finally today, Ryan's parents trekked up to Golden for a little visit and some lunch at the Olive Garden.  Rilyn and Ryder hitched a ride too and we all had fun hanging out and chowing down.

Ryan and his parents

Ryder, myself, and Rilyn.  It was a busy, chocolate milk filled lunch :)

These two!  A silly, sweet bunch that made lunch all the better

So while this week is busy we have even more exciting events happening this week and month that I'll share about later on!  Stay tuned :) 

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. 
James 4:10

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Life Giving Reads This Week

I'm sitting here with a morning off and a big mug of twirly-steam coffee.  Sweetened with organic milk and raw honey.  And since I have the time I'm bouncing between by Bible, my journal, and reading a few life-giving articles I've happened across.

I have to share the wealth!

An inspiration to parent (perhaps live?) not wallowing in or worrying about the judgement from others.  A personal friend wrote this and I have re-read it and passed it on several times already.  

I feel more free already.

 Choosing those life giving words: To LIVE is Christ.  And just so we can all be free of judgement and comparison, here is a shot into my currently messy kitchen.  Is that a piece of bread with a bite taken out of it?  Ha!

I have read this one several times slowly during a recent quiet time.  An inspiration for holiness, sabbath, and daily delight in rest.  You will exhale after you read this gorgeous article...and possibly start a new tradition.

A birthday bouquet from the thoughtful Clark family

Ry and I are all about water, water, water!  It is what he does for a living after all :)  However, THIS article about the affects of soda on your daily health blew us out of the water.  

Oh my.

Fresh berries but not many left when they are so delicious

I'm not sure I have a proper description of this article.  When the likely cause of addiction is found, you might just be SHOCKED to see what the theory says.  I've had coffee date discussions with friends over this one and it's always a rich, tangled conversation.

Just to add some sweetness to your day: two sleepy doodles.  Can you tell them apart?

I hope you enjoy these-the words from others challenging me, freeing me, encouraging me.  It's such a gift.  

Pass on your favorite reads this week if you have them and in the meantime I'll leave you with this incredible pearl...

Love is patient...

1 Corinthians 13


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