Sunday, June 28, 2015


Our summer is in full swing!  There is not a whole lot better than a summer weekend with out a lot of plans cramming it.

Saturday morning Ryan Decker woke up us at 5:00 a.m. and then told me that I was turning HIM into more of a morning person!!  Yeah right... Early mornings are my absolute favorite time of day so I wasn't sad to be woken up but we had a few hours before the farmer's market opened.

So we headed to the store so I could get the makings for lasagna since I've been craving some for a few days.  I went in my pajamas and looked very classy.

After the store run I made a pot of coffee and cooked while Ryan watched a few shows and we just let the morning roll in.

Linny joined us at the Golden Farmer's Market and she was very patient when our doodles lost their minds and were overly excited.  We bought heirloom tomatoes, fresh garlic, local honey, and a blackberry scone to split.  She even helped me make a french silk pie after our busy morning out!

My MIL got me these super cute shirt that so many people comment on-my personal beach ball!  Heirloom tomatoes are my favorite of all time and these got turned into bruschetta asap when we got home

Ryan bought honey and this amazing cinnamon honey spread that we are pumped to put on toast

Grumpies had a very hard week (read below) and was exhausted by our morning outing.  He konked right out.  And these are my lasagnas! I can't wait to try them 

Ryan has been doing increasingly better by the day! For several weeks he has been waking up with intense nausea and bloating and we really couldn't determine why.  He had a follow up appointment on Thursday and this new PA we are seeing had the wisdom to think stomach acid.  He thinks it's an over production isue so a simple Zantac seems to be doing the trick!


Here he is with his new apple watch that he will promptly give you the full run down on if you should ever cross paths with him.  He had a Skype apple appointment with an employee where they teach you things about your product and he actually taught his Apple guy some new things HA!

Grumpies had a visit to the vet, poor guy :(  He had been licking and licking his little paw and while I was keeping an eye on it, it wasn't until the morning of Day 3 that I finally noticed it was getting pink and swollen.  

I took him into the vet where he first got lots of treats, they shaved his paw, looked for anything sticking in it (found nothing), and then wrapped it up in a little cast so the site could heal.  Plus he got this very stylish cone... 

I call him my flashlight :)

He is on the mend only wearing his cast until Sunday and he is on a 2 week round of antibiotics and anti-inflammatories.  He has been getting S.P.O.I.L.E.D to help him feel better

On Friday afternoon I was able to meet up with my amazing friend Hannah and her little peanut, Isaac.  We enjoyed lunch at Garbanzo and walked the Highlands stores so her little man would fall asleep in his stroller.

P.S.  Here is the secret code I have unwittingly broken at Garbanzo: order a kid's pita meal but pita on the side.  Then they proceed to fill up a plate with ALL the pita fillings you could ever want and that would clearly never fit into a little 1/2 pita.  I got a giant plate of food, chips, and a drink for $4.99  Boom.

It's so nice to have a close mama friend who just went through what I'm currently experiencing so I can process with and ask my questions.  She is so wise and such a great mom!  We had a good morning.

Now with Ryan's health really coming back he is cranking out house projects like it's his job.  He is currently repainting all the trim in our house and getting our yard in tip top shape.  He is such a hard worker.  

He told me today, 'Babe, I feel SO good and I love not sitting around feeling sick!"  He truly has the most energy that I know of!  We are grateful for his progress and such a sweet summer already!

It was good for me to be afflicted that I might learn your decrees

Psalm 119:71

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Baby Decker's Nursery

The nursery!!

We finished Baby Decker's nursery when I was about 29 weeks which has been so freeing.  It's nice to have nothing to do but wait for baby to show up.

Ryan did so much work to make this room come together-he has had the walls painted, the crib put together, and rocker assembled since my first trimester!  The rest was just accessories and supplies.

We LOVE how the entire room turned out.  Since we aren't finding out if Baby D is a boy or girl we needed to go gender neutral.  The theme was "adventure" so to pull it all together there is the map, a cute plane from Ryan's childhood, and the cloud mobile which was a shower gift.  

The walls are turquoise and most of the accessories are accented in gray or green.

I'm so thrilled to have the little one's room completed and now all it needs is a little baby :)

Ryan made the frame for the map and then stained it.  I think it really makes the map pop.  We have added push pins in colors assigned to each person to designate where we have traveled--Baby D already has 4 countries in utero!

My mom bought us these curtains but signed the package from Grumples and Poppy haha  They are gray and white polka dots and best of all?  Black out to make it nice and dark in there!

Ryan designed this little "toy corner" which I think is so sweet.  He hung up the plane in the corner because it was from his childhood and he just really loves it.  And it was his idea to hang toy baskets from hooks.  It came together so well

We repurposed an antique dresser that used to be in our living room as a changing table

There is lots of room in the big drawers for onsies, clothing, diapers, and anything you need for a change

Look at all those diapers!  Courtesy of the ladies who attended our baby shower

It's nice to have so much organization in our closet.  Keeps everything easy to find and easy to see

I just love this carseat cover that we were gifted at the shower!  It's so neutral and whimsical

And the final accessory?  Two doodles who can't wait to meet their own tiny human to guard and love

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Summer Joys

Even in the midst of Ryan recovering from his surgery (updates posting soon) we are still trying to soak up as much Colorado summer awesomeness as possible!

It is a little bit hard when his diet and physical abilities have some restrictions but we are still making the most of it.  He is working from home part time while recovering the other half of the day.  So in the evenings we walk to the nearby park with the doodles, grill summer-y meals, read, sit on the back porch, and make time for some low key summer events.

For Father's Day we took my dad to the Rockies game.  They won and in the 5th inning (I think...) there were a bunch of home runs and that was SO fun to be there for!!  It was a super perfect summer night and it was nice to be out of the house.

This is the type of food that graces our kitchen most days.  As summer-y and fresh as possible is all that I ask.  Big bowls of watermelon and nectarines, grilled corn, salads, and a hot dog?!  I HAAAAATE hot dogs but this one was grilled pretty perfectly by my husband and in my pregnancy craziness I ate it.  

It wasn't the most horrible thing that ever happened but I can't say there will be a lot of them in my future either.

We have big bouquets of fresh flowers around our house and the swamp cooler runs on high.  I keep it so cold in our house that poor Ryan walks around in a jacket most days #summerpregnancyjoys

 One day last week we took the whole day to ourselves.  Some plans got rearranged and canceled so we made it a sabbath instead.  Side note: we should have one day every week for rest and recharge! We talk about it and implement it for awhile but need to be more regular about it.

  We slept in, made breakfast, went on a walk,  spent time at the library and passed away the rest of the day reading.  I drank big mugs of decaf coffee, read magazines on the porch between chapters, Ryan devoured his new books, and I took THREE naps.

It was the most restful day we have had since the beginning of June.  In just a three weeks time we have had so so so so much going.  Surgery, hospital stay, recovery, final classes, big tests, graduation,  studying, a funeral, family events, and more.

Even just one simple day of rest was all we needed to completely recharge and refuel.  I am grateful.

In other summer news, owning two black doodles means we have to be very careful with the heat.  These two overheat so quickly because of their dark color and thick hair.  Even on he earliest morning walks when it's still cool and shady they come back panting like crazy.  We only walk at night now so they stay comfy.

To keep them happy during the day they get constant bowls of ice water, ice cream treats (which Ryan thinks is a great use of delicious ice cream), and the other day nice long cool baths.  I might have cooled Poppy off too much because the little munchkin curled up in a tight little ball for about 3 hours afterwards on her bed haha

I keep cool with the swamp cooler on full blast and big water bottles of ice water.  This was one of the gifts my parents got me for graduation. How cute?!?  It's from Etsy and I love it!

I always brushed people off when they made comments about pregnancy and the summer but now I do understand a little more the discomforts that come along with it.  It's obviously a first world problem because I have SO many ways to stay comfortable but it's been work to stay patient when I am overheating.  

And just for the record it's never helpful to tell pregnant ladies how hot they will be in July.  Just shut your mouth because believe me...WE KNOW!

That is about all for us!  I am studying 4 hours a day for NCLEX and feeling more confident by the day about passing the first time.  I need a focused brain and the grace of the Lord to do it though!

Ryan starts back to work next Wednesday and we are really hopeful his bowels are working the right way and he has the complete physical endurance for an 8 hour day at the office.  He always amazes me!

We have plans for the Farmer's Market this weekend, more grilling out, and maybe a firepit one evening.  We love summer!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Finished With Nursing School

Graduation was an excellent day and it was really special to celebrate this enormous accomplishment!  After an intensive 21 month program, I graduated magna cum laude from Denver School of Nursing with my Bachelor's of Science in Nursing. 


My parents, my sister, my in-laws, and of course Ryan John were all there to cheer and celebrate.  Reflecting on all the work, studying, clinicals, and time was important because this commitment was a huge decision.  I'm thankful for a husband and family who supported 100% as I took this journey on.

After the 2 hour ceremony we all enjoyed lunch at the Old Spaghetti Factory and I received some VERY generous graduation gifts :)

My next step is to schedule and pass the NCLEX.  By the time my school processes my transcripts and they get to the right organizations I can sit for my NCLEX about mid-July at the earliest.  If I pass the first time that leaves me due with our peanut in another 6 weeks.  After I pass the NCLEX my plan is to start work sometime in winter 2016 since not a lot of employers are willing to take on a new grad that close to her due date.

 My very generous mom (aka giddy grammy-to-be) wants to babysit at least once a per week so I'll probably look for a PRN nursing job in January-ish and see how that schedule fits for us.

 Updates in the coming weeks on my NCLEX studying progress that but for now I'm just thankful to be done with school and overwhelmed with pride at what I was able to accomplish!

Myself and Ryan who looks great in my cap.  The gold cords are for honors, the red/green/yellow cords are for participation in Global Health Perspectives, and the black ribbon with nursing pin is unique to DSN

My family all came to celebrate

Ryan's parents made it for the ceremony too

Another shot of Ryan and I once I had my cap back

My sweet friend Amanda and I.  We became so close in school and bonded especially over the last months as she is 13 weeks pregnant!  There were three of us in my cohort that were pregnant before graduation so that gave us a lot to talk about :)

All of the preggos!  We are all exactly 8 weeks apart from each other

More pictures before the ceremony

An entire cohort picture--love these people!

My sweet friend Danielle and I before the ceremony

My friend Jillie bought a selfie stick which I thought was hilarious.  She used it during the ceremony to get a shot of all of us in this section

Just a regular shot of Ryan and I--so thankful for this man who was the most integral part of making my dream of nursing a reality!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Pregnancy Weeks 29 & 30

Weeks 29 & 30 Pregnancy Questionnaire

Baby Size: Large cabbage

My weight gain so far:  
23 lbs at my last weigh.  This has been an area of frustration for me.  Not the weight gain, but the emphasis on numbers in the OB world (which is ironic that I am keep track of it drives me crazy, no?!?).  Anyway, I never weighed myself until my first midwife appointment when they HAD to know my pre-pregnancy weight.  I just don't like the numbers game!!  Anyway, for the remaining 10 weeks I'll still be counting since they need to know but more importantly I want to emphasize that I feel good, look good, and am healthy more than the final number on the scale.

Rant finished.

Food loves: 
Meh.  I am so picky with foods again as of late.  Ryan and I have decided I am not a very fun pregnant lady when it comes to cravings and eating.

I am into Kashi cereal for breakfast, nectarines, watermelon, tofu stir fry, greek yogurt, homemade fruit smoothies.  I ate pretty much a whole bag of harvest cheddar sun chips on my own and will never turn down a Sweet Cow ice cream sandwich.  It's just that I don't really crave anything and sometimes I stare into the fridge hoping that whatever mystery food my body is wanting will magically appear fully cooked and ready to eat.  I'm still waiting...

Food hates: 
Eggs, stinky cheese, cumin, grease, and anything with green chilis in it

3 Pros of Week 29 & 30
1.  I know I always put this but it's so fun feeling all the little body part of our critter in my stomach.  I've had a foot stuck  under my right ribs pretty much all day which blows my mind!  We feel a butt or a head many times throughout the day which is also neat.  It is INSANE to think that a naked little human is hanging out in my uterus just growing away.  Wow. 
2. Foot rubs from Ryan John.  He is so sweet.  I am walking no less than 3 miles a day which keeps swelling in my feet down and makes me feel healthier.  A pregnancy foot rub post shower with lotion from my sweet husband is like Christmas morning.
3. Having a big ole belly!  I really enjoy this part of pregnancy.  I have always thought pregnant ladies are adorable so now I'm happy to be one.  I like having a belly for people to touch and ask about and share.  It's a gift!

3 Cons of Week 29 & 30
1. Pubic bone pain!!!  Anytime I sit or lay too long that ligament right in the center of the pubic bone hurts like it's on fuego!  Ouch.
2.  Being a picky eater.  It's a bummer for Ryan to list off  30 things I can eat and nothing sounds that delish.
3.  Peeing peeing peeing all through the night.  This has been pretty true most of the pregnancy.  I do feel more tired through the day from being up so much but that should just be training I am grateful for once we have a newborn.

Working Out:
2 walks per day which I LOVE!  Ryan recently got an Apple watch and has been helping my track my walks more accurately.  I've been way underestimating how far and long I walk.  I actually cover about 4 miles per day.  I always walk while it's still cool, put on my hat and sunscreen and keep a bowl of fruit in the fridge to cool down with when I get back.

Best Moment of the Week:
Our baby room is done!!  Last week we officially got the baby's room 100% completed.  There is not one supply we need to comfortably bring this baby home.  We are all set and it feels so freeing!  It was so fun to wash all those blankets and onsies, put everything away in it's place and just get the room together.  Most mornings I sit in there with my (decaf) coffee to just enjoy the peace and calm of such a sweet space.  It's my favorite room in the whole house.

Ryan Decker is such a stud.  Even as he has recovered from his surgery he still takes care of me and baby.  How is this even possible?!  He rubs my feet at the end of the day and is always willing to get me a late night snack.  He did a great job helping me put away everything in the baby's room with great suggestion for organization or where we should hang things.

He has officially picked out our baby's name if it's a girl (which he is confident that it is).  I cannot decide on a girl name I even remotely like so I told him he should just name her if she is a girl and that made him very happy :)  We have about 94 boy names we like so if our baby is a studly little man we are all set.  Anyway, he has his girl name picked out and LOVES it which I think is quite adorable.  We shall see in about 10 weeks what the little peanut is!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Graduation Day!

Today at 10:00 a.m. I am officially graduating nursing school!

Never ever could I have thought that my nursing school journey would have been THIS wonderful!

I knew I loved nursing, medical knowledge, and caring for people.  But I did not anticipate such knowledge, life-long new friends, insane patient stories, the endurance required of me, the hilarious cohort I was a part of, and the life-changing experience this has been.

One very sick husband sparked all my interest in nursing back in 2012.  While I would never want him to be sick, if he hadn't been as critically ill as he was, I may not have understood how important nurses are and been inspired to become one myself.

I remember one night he was in the hospital and I started googling "nursing programs".  I'll admit I was super overwhelmed by the science heavy pre-reqs.  It's not my natural bend to think like that.  I remember saying to Ryan, 

"I think I can do this even though it looks scary, what do you think?"

From then on I soaked up shows like NY Med, toured 3 nursing schools in Colorado, and got down to business to make sure I would succeed.

It all started with my CNA licensing and pre-reqs like A&P and chemistry at the local community college.  Then onto bigger and better things like Denver School of Nursing!

I learned the basics first, like sterile gloving...

Gave blood as one of many volunteer adventures over the last 21 months. I volunteered over 50 hours for Global Health Perspectives, a student group I was a part of spending time as a reading tutor, HWI women's advocate, food bank organizer, and Bonfils blood giver...

Learned to start IV's and eventually became a student leader in this lab...

I went through dozens of highlighters and pens, printed stacks of pages and read thousands of words to study for too many tests to remember...

Ashley, Nathan, Mark and Nate and I all made up one incredibly committed study group and I truly believe we could not have gotten the A's and did as well as we did without one another...

Ashley, Mark, Nate, myself, and Nylah all enjoyed breakfast out after a HESI.  One special thing about our cohort is how well we got along and the way we engaged with each other outside of school.  These are unique people I am grateful to know for life...

There was silliness in the hospital cafeterias...

And SO much laughter during OB SIMS lab...

Ashley, myself, Nylah, and Alissa all held a food drive for one of the poorest schools in Aurora as a part of our final research project and fed hundreds of children and their families...

I devoured these books-highlighting, copying, quoting, and cramming...

I felt like this a few times but on the whole it was important to me to approach nursing school as a very, very rare gift and one that I felt honored to be a part of...

Nursing school was what I expected in a lot of way and totally surprising in others.  I did not expect to do as well as I did (President's or Dean's list every quarter, baby) because my brain is not naturally gifted in science. 

But thankfully nursing is so holistic and what took my brain a few weeks to adjust to material wise, was already set to go in terms of patients and care.  

There are a few moments I wish I would have studied just a little harder to push a B+ to the A category, but I feel like I utilized my time well and didn't waste a moment.  There is little, if anything, I would change about this 21 month program.

What's even more insane??

This adventure was not just mine.  Ryan has supported ENTIRELY since day 1.  He has worked hard, figured out finances and loans, and empowered me to stay home or work (whichever I prefer).  He made me dinners, packed lunches, cleaned the house, pampered me, and made sure I would succeed on this journey in anyway he could.  I am grateful for my husband.

My parents backed us up the entire way too!  My mom cleaned our house once a week and dropped off a weekly dinners to make things easier.  My dad walked our doodles and made day time care for them so much more simple.

All of our families and siblings have been interested, supported us, and helped along the way.  We are grateful for our families!

This accomplishment, graduating nursing school, is a dream come true and powered by the people who care and love me.  I could not be more thankful or feel more empowered as this very important day unfolds.

It will be a joy and exciting roller coaster to see what the next few months have in store for this brand new nurse...

But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded."

2 Chronicles 15:7


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