Saturday, August 23, 2014

Life Lately

*sigh* I always say I am going to post more, but then I never do. Twin toddler life is so, so busy. The good kind though. I have been sewing a lot lately and it seems to ease my worries about Presley and her health issues. But, that's another post for another time. It's HOT here in Miami and to my understanding, it's always going to be like this--year round! So I started getting worried when all of the store here completely put away their shorts and the shelves are filled with jeans and long sleeve shirts and dresses. Yikes! What am I supposed to wear in the fall and winter seasons? What if the girls grow out of their shorts? I asked some of the other military wives and they said they just be sure to stock up beforehand to carry them through. Nice. I didn't do that. But then, I found the Willow & Co. Clover shorts. I don't care if I ever make another pair of shorts other than these ever again. I adore the pleats. It's so me. And Presley and Kourtney of course. I paired it with the Aster Cardigan from Willow & Co. as well since when it rains it does get chilly when you are wet and go into stores or the house with air conditioning. Oh and did I mention it rains everyday? Life in Miami is definitely what I am most used to with the beach life but I do miss those San Francisco views :( Anyway, here are the insanely adorable Clover shorts and Aster cardigan I made:

In love with the palm tree reflections in her sunglasses



Monday, July 7, 2014

Our 7th Anniversary

Today was our 7th anniversary and I honestly can't believe we've been married that long. Tons of adventures together, a couple fights, two beautiful girls and here we are. And I still love him as much as I did our first year of marriage! Here's to hoping we have 100 more years of marriage to look forward to! We spent the day at the beach and then Nana watched the girls while we went to the casino and out to dinner. Travis even got me a rose gold anchor necklace that has diamonds on the tips. I can't believe he finally got it for me-- I found it on Pier 39 in San Francisco when we first visited the pier when we got stationed there in 2009 and every time we would go there I would stop in to the little store and look at it. I sometimes would ask if I could get it and the answer was always no so I assumed it was just not going to happen or out of our price range. When I asked him tonight why he finally got it for me this time he said that he wanted me to have it to remember the amazing times together at the pier. So sweet.  <3

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Thank You San Francisco for an Amazing Adventure

San Francisco has SO much to see--so many attractions, hikes, views, places you need to eat at, and secret spots that unless you live there your whole life I don't think you would ever be ale to see all of them--heck, I don't think most of the people that live there that I met did most of the things that we did! Anyway, we got to San Francisco in December of 2009 and since Travis was just getting out of A school at that point, there was a lot to do at work and he often had to stay late getting things signed off, and learning the ropes of the airstation. He was also put on nights, which at the time, was horrible. The chief there would work them from 4pm to sometimes 5 in the morning! Needless to say, he was tired all the time and we weren't able to do much exploring at all. By 2010, I was pregnant with the girls and was so nauseous that I didn't feel like doing much and 2011 brought new challenges when the girls were born at 25 weeks and we did zero exploring that year with two preemie newborns at home. So, we didn't get to experience San Francisco a whole lot the first 3 years we were there and since we had Presley's medical issues we didn't do much in the wintertime thereafter either. This of course made me sad and time was running out, so before we left, Travis took some time off and we explored San Francisco. Some places we had already been, some we hadn't, it was fun! Here are some pictures from our adventures at the Palace of Fine Arts, Water Temple, and Viloli Estate.

Cheese faces at the Water Temple

Me and the girls outside Filoli Estate
Water Temple

Lombard Street

Filoli Estate

Palace of the Fine Arts

We also had a chance to take some photos with my photographer friend, Jenni before we left:

Family picture in front of the Full House houses in Alamo Square Park

Lovers Lane in the Presidio

It was a great way to say goodbye to a great city! I feel so lucky to be able to say that my little girls were born in San Francisco! California Pacific Medical Center is one of the top NICUs in the country and I often think about how lucky we are that God sent us to San Francisco. He knew the girls would need this hospital and these doctors--it was in His plans all along. You see, San Francisco wasn't our first choice when Travis was picking out where we wanted to go--our first pick was Atlantic City, NJ. But someone that was ahead of Travis in line, picked it right before him and so we ended up with San Francisco. Fate is funny like that, if Travis had been number 1 in line, he wouldn't have picked San Francisco, if the guy hadn't picked Atlantic City right before him, we would've been in New Jersey this whole time. And if we wouldn't have ended up here, I don't know that the fate of the girls would have been the same. I don't know if they would be here today. I don't like to think of the "what ifs" but I can't help think of what might have been had we not lived here. The famous phrase "I left my heart in San Francisco" really holds true for me and always will. Where my little girls were born, among the mountains and bay......where two little 1 lb miracles came into our lives.....thank you San Francisco.

The girls in front of the hospital where they were born.....3 years later on the exact day they came home. June 7th, 2014

The girls in their empty room.
Some of the very first pictures I ever took in San Francisco circa 2010:

I love you San Francisco, I promise to visit you again someday.

Saturday, July 5, 2014


I am terribly ashamed that I have not updated this blog in so long. I meant to keep up with it forever and life just had other things in store for me and I just couldn't find the time. I have missed it oh so much though and I am back! I guess I should explain what we have been up to before I start backtracking and posting pictures from--wait for it.....Christmas! Gosh I am so behind I feel like I don't even know where to start so I guess I will just do a little update on all of us since it has been so long......
First, we have been transferred to Miami Florida! We made the 3,500 mile journey over 11 days in June and surprisingly it wasn't terrible. The coordination of it was the most stressful aspect of it. We had to travel with oxygen and racemic epinephrine for Presley and also had to stay overnight in close proximity to pediatric hospitals and emergency rooms so it really limited the number of miles we could travel in a day since only the big cities have them. Anyway, it wasn't terrible--just took a lot of planning on my part and thankfully, we had no issues except a little one in Hollywood, CA that luckily didn't require a hospital trip or even treatment so I feel very blessed. We were originally slated for Atlantic City, NJ but the nearest pediatric hospital would've been over an hour away so we were lucky to have a detailer that worked with us and allowed us to come here to Miami instead where they have one of the top hospitals--Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital. We had a blast getting to see family as we passed through Texas and I have tons of pictures from our road trip that I will be adding. The girls had a fun time going to the Mexican market with Grandma and Grandpa and riding horses with Paw, and visiting Aunt Jody. We even picked up Nana in New Orleans and me and Travis had a date night on Bourbon Street. We miss San Francisco terribly but we are loving Miami and it seems like a way better fit for our family so far. It is warmer, you can actually get into the ocean without freezing so the girls love it and our living conditions are way better too since we can afford a house here with a pool. I do miss my view in San Francisco though and the gorgeous mountains and bay although San Francisco, for me, holds a lot of bad memories and it just feels so great to have a fresh start somewhere new.
Presley is such a sassy, bossy little thing and has the cutest little puppy dog eyes EVER (just like her Daddy by the way) that seem to be able to get her out of trouble all the time. She loves playing with Kourtney and is always the one that gets to decides how, when, and what they play and if she doesn't get her way--watch out! Hehe. She had two more respiratory distress episodes in January and again in May which is always hard. I feel like no parent should have to hear their child gasping for air and turning blue and yet I have seen it 7 times. Dr. Hardy finally decided to do a bronchoscopy to see to what extent the scar tissue was and she ended up finding a ball of scar tissue instead of an all over scarring. The ball of scar tissue (granuloma) in her day to day life does not affect her at all, but when she gets a cough or sore throat, it closes that part of the airway even more and it turns into an emergency situation. We also found that her left vocal cord is partially paralyzed which means nothing really, she just has a softer voice really (which she still can amazingly scream high pitched just like every other kid can). Her false vocal cords are even playing a role to try to round out her voice which is pretty surprising. They did a CT scan also just to make sure that it is in fact just tissue behind the granuloma and it is thankfully (I say thankfully since there are some cancers that can present the same way a granuloma can). Our new pulmonologist here in Miami is currently working with an ENT doctor and they plan to actually remove it so that this whole problem can be eliminated. The plan in San Francisco was to let her outgrow it which is good and less invasive but as of right now, Presley cannot go to preschool and neither can Kourtney in fear that she will get sick and go into respiratory distress. If it was taken out, I feel like they could be normal kids--it just makes sense but we have to wait a couple more weeks to get into the ENT doctor so we will see what he says when he has a chance to review everything.
Kourtney is my little talker! She literally never shuts up! Haha! She is always singing, dancing, or talking about something. She has a hard time adjusting to new situations and cries a lot out of frustration when we don't let her do what she wants to all the time but I feel like it is just a normal 3 year old problem. She loves her little kitty cat and takes him with her everywhere. He is getting pretty raggedy and I tried to replace him but she wasn't having it. She is now in a big girl bed and LOVES it! I will have to post a picture of their new room here in Miami that I am redoing. She is loving it so far. She is so smart--she can count to 20 and sings the ABC's and all other nursery rhyme songs like a pro. She's very inquisitive and likes to learn how things work--just like her Daddy! She and Presley both really are enjoying the little baby ducks that come to our house everyday and they love feeding them and talking to them. She's not much of a swimmer like Presley is but they both love the beach and building sandcastles. They are, officially as of today, both potty trained and I feel like if we can get Presley's issue situated that Kourtney will totally rock at preschool. She's THAT smart!
Travis continues to love what he does at work and is now an E5. They awarded him with a plaque in San Francisco before he left that is the "Swain Bolt". A bolt they named after him since he always seemed to find broken ones that needed replacing. They got tired of him always finding those kind of broken bolts that they finally just named it after him--the Swain Bolt. I thought that was pretty cool. He still hasn't reported to his station here in Miami since they were nice enough to allow him to take some time off to get situated here and allow us to get Presley's doctors lined up. He is loving having a lawn to mow and a place for a grill though and he grilled twice in one day yesterday for the Fourth of July! He also in enjoying not wearing hoodies all day everyday and we often joke that we have been wearing hoodies for 5 years since it averaged 60 degrees year round in CA.
As for me, I am loving Florida! I love the clear ocean water and just being this close to it makes me feel so much better. I have to admit that I got really depressed in San Francisco. It got hard with Presley's condition to really do much and if we did, I was worried all the time. We had fun at home, we did, but I just was having a hard time dealing with stuff that people couldn't see from the outside in. That's mainly why I am so happy to be here in Florida--I feel like San Francisco had some bad memories or triggers to bad memories that it is nice to finally close that chapter up. Don't get me wrong it has some amazing memories and I will always have a place in my heart for San Francisco but it was just time to go I felt like. Time to close that chapter of our lives and start some exciting new ones. I started making and selling children's clothes on etsy and through facebook and have found great success in it surprisingly. I named my shop Little Pink Carousel and the "pink" in the name has a secret to it--I would've chosen just "Little Carousel" but wanted some kind of way to add the letters p and k in it for the girls so I added the word pink in!  Here's my logo--I love how the little girls resemble Presley and Kourtney!
I am currently setting up my sewing room in the new house so that I can open my shop up again since I have currently been on a 2 month break and am itching to get back at it! I like how it allows me to sew and make heirloom pieces for P &K, take professional photographs of my creations on my precious little girls, and make some money along the way and helps me to feel like I am accomplishing something (even though I am not using my degree). I only sew during nap time and at night when I have a few hours to myself but it really is a nice soothing thing for me to do and I love to create beautiful things. Nobody really taught me how to sew either--I learned through YouTube videos!
Anyway, I think I will get back to unpacking boxes which is my least favorite thing to do but I am making it a point to get back into blogging and will e updating soon!