Friday, December 22, 2017

Merry Christmas 2017

You haven't heard from me in {quite} awhile!! Did you miss me?

I have about 5 or 6 blog posts that are in draft...I just cant seem to find the motivation or time to finish them off. I've been a bit overloaded with work and life and when that happens it is all I can do to get through my day doing what i HAVE to do, and leaves very little time for what i may WANT to do, like updating this blog.

I am taking the next week and a half off work. I wont be answering emails, or doing any photoshoots whatsoever. Vastly different from last year! Last year I worked up to the 23rd and then started again on the 27th. In the week from Christmas to New Years, I had 4 photoshoots!! I have nothing scheduled so I can refocus my mind and soul and spend some MUCH needed quality time with my husband and sweet sweet son.

I just wanted to pop on and wish everyone a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS from my family to yours. I hope you take some time to enjoy the moment and not be so frazzled that you miss the important things--and of course to remember the reason for the season--our dear Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.


Friday, September 22, 2017


Tonight my heart hurts and my eyes brim with tears.

I am longing for another little one to join our family.

I cry while holding my Nash...he is getting so big, so grown up, so fast.

I feel that I am not done having children.

I fear that my window is closing.

I long for the day that I can give Nash a sibling. He would love that so much. A buddy.

Infertility is the worst.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Still alive

Its been 2 months since I last posted.

I've been in the throws of life. And right now, I tell you, life is giving me a run for my money!!

I was sick for the entire month of July.

We are in the middle of refinancing our home which is a huge long pain in the behind.

I've been trying to make summer fun for Nash.

I've also been trying to compile "homeschool" curriculum to do with him this next year until he goes into preschool.

I am in the middle of planning a giant surprise party.

My business is SLOW as everyone has been on vacation and then getting into school starting. Its been stressing me out.

My first car, cozey, is due for registration AND emissions. My father is a mechanic...and no matter what we do, she wont pass emissions. Too many things wrong with her to try to fix because she isnt worth all that time and money. So I'm running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to figure out what to do. And every person I talk to either has no idea or they all give me different instructions. I'm thoroughly confused.

With everything going on, my anxiety is UP UP UP. Working on that. Have had some days where I just sit and watch movies and play trains with Nash because I cant make myself go out and "be productive".

I also have been in the middle of a bathroom reno that I'm doing all on my own. I cant expand it yet ($$$!) but have plans to do it in the not too horribly distant future. However, I've sanded and painted, replaced and fixed, and currently I'm in the middle of doing a custom floor. I've learned lots of new skills.

AND we just got back from Jace's VanWagoner family reunion up in Ogden. It was Nash's first time meeting them, and my first time seeing most of them since basically our wedding. Yikes, thats a long time! It was alot of driving, and Nash did great. It was good fun to see them all. Also, I drove through Salt Lake for the first time and lived to tell the tale. Utah drivers and my could have been interesting. Lol

Anyways, thats whats new here. I've sat down to write multiple times but just havent. I also havent updated my social media either. I will try to do better. But if you dont see anything from me, its probably because I'm overwhelmed and eventually I'll emerge.

Oh! and Happy Birthday today to our nephew Corbin! #9!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

A series of Unfortunate Events

It started with an ache.

My forearm was throbbing a bit.

I didnt think anything of it and continued about my day. We went to the library, I played with Nash, I cleaned a little...nothing out of the ordinary. I had a photoshoot cancellation for the next day...bummer. 

Then the ache and throbbing slowly ran up my arm into my shoulder. I could no longer move my arm without immense pain. 

Weird, because I cant think of anything I might have done to cause this. Started to be glad for the photo shoot cancellation.

It was bad enough, that I couldn't put my car into gear...I couldn't lift my arm that high.

I went to my parents house, where I was given a Priesthood blessing and a sling.

I went home and putting Nash to bed took 3 times as long without the use of my right (dominant) arm.

I took Ibuprofen and waited for Jace to come home.

We stayed up way too late watching American Ninja Warrior...almost 1 AM.

In bed, I wasn't sure how I was going to sleep, my arm hurt.

After about an hour, I sat bolt upright with a new pain. A sharp pain. My back was on fire and it felt like pins and needles were in two different parts of my back.

I birthed a child, so this was not the worst pain I have felt. But I havent felt this kind of pain before. It was new and scary. 

Jace started rubbing my shoulder thinking I pinched a nerve, and thats when he noticed the welts.

He started tearing apart our bed while I was concentrating on my breathing.

And then he found the source of my new pain. An unwelcome guest. The evil scorpion himself.


I fear scorpions. Alot. I didnt grow up ever seeing one. Never knew what to experience. 

Pain. Pain is what you experience. Thankfully I didnt have an allergic reaction, so all I had to worry about was the pain.

Well, pain and now fear of my house and room. Every surface, every carpet, every tile in my home--is the exact color of the smooshed scorpion that Jace carried out on the bottom of his shoe.

I couldnt move. My back hurt so much, that I almost forgot that I could barely move my right arm. ALMOST. 

I sat up, on the edge of my couch, messaging my other photoshoot client that I wouldnt be able to do their shoot that afternoon, and watching pointless shows until 7 AM. Then I slowly made my way into my room and tried to sleep. 10-15 minute increments were all I could do. Nash was up for the day before 8 (poor Jace). We have season tickets for tonights Dbacks game. Will I be able to go? I dont know. 

One thing I do know? In less than 24 hours i became unable to use my right arm, lost 2 clients (until i reschedule), and rolled over on a scorpion that caused me to not sleep and be in pain.

This now ends Andrea's saga of unfortunate events of last night.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Week 4

Well, here it is. The last weekly update that i'm gonna make myself do :) I'm sure to check back in and let you know my progress at some point.

I had my weigh in yesterday. Down another pound. That's 6 pounds in 4 weeks exactly.

Not my best--but also not bad.

This last week, I finished my period FINALLY, had an ultrasound on my thyroid, did a fasting glucose test, and was exhausted.

I had my follow up appointment today with my endocrinologist.

The ultrasound on the thyroid showed 2 small nodules--neither of them big enough to even biopsy so shes not worried about them. I'll get another ultrasound in a year to make sure they aren't growing. If they are, then there is a VERY SLIM chance that the biopsy would show cancer. She isn't worried, and neither am I.

My fasting glucose reading was great, however the draws at 1 and 2 hours were not. I wasn't allowed to take my metformin that day and what it showed was that i was in the "pre-diabetic" range. She told me that she is calling me Insulin Resistant and that I'll probably have to take metformin for the rest of my life.

I'll go in and see her before the end of the year and we'll check my progress on the weight loss and possibly do more blood work to see how everything is changing.

All in all, not a bad appointment.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

What I know

So, I wouldn't call myself an expert on anything.

I've done lots of things.

Lots of things well, and lots of things not so well.

I've learned lots.

One thing I know well (that I wish I didn't) is the horrible-ness of cancer.

When I was 5, my grandpa who I idolized, died of prostate cancer.

When I was 13, my aunt died of pancreatic cancer.

When I was 19, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. She went from stage one pre-surgery to almost a stage 4 after (ended up stage 3). She almost died. She then tested positive for the ovarian cancer gene. So she had a hysterectomy so that wouldn't take her life.

When I was 22, my uncle died of cancer that was caught too late and had metastasized to his bones.

At 26, I got tested and tested positive for the same cancer gene that my mom did.

What I'm saying, is (and this is just my close family.)..cancer is a beast that is relentless.

I learned: how to be strong, when you feel weak.
I learned: how to pick up and keep going, when you feel like falling apart.
I learned: how to cope with the feeling of loss.
I learned: what it was like to watch your parent go through something that basically was killing them, in order for them to live to see you into adulthood.
I learned: to rely on faith. To drink in the hopes and prayers of others.

I watched my mother have surgery after surgery, have a double mastectomy, receive a port to have chemo, do 6 months of chemo, do weeks and weeks of radiation therapy, lose her hair, stay in bed because she was so sick, I've seen her worry and stress about "what if" something happened to her--what would happen to her kids.

I've come to know a thing or two about cancer.
Its a monster. 

Jace's oldest brother Jeff had cancer when he was a toddler. Well, we found out today that the monster has returned. This time its residing around his colon. Jeff has colon cancer. He'll go in for surgery next week, and then have 6 months of chemo (i don't know about radiation), and then another surgery later to reattach his bowels. 

This, to me, unfortunately feels routine. No one should ever feel that way about something so horrible.

But here is what I know:
God is real.
God is good.
God loves us.
The power of prayer is real.
Faith of others can carry you through.
Hope is the best medicine.
Laughter will be tough to find, but crucial.
It is OKAY to be scared.
It is OKAY to cry.
It is OKAY to worry.
And its OKAY to express how you are really feeling.

Are you down in the dumps? Does that moment in time "suck"? Say it. Are you so tired of puking your guts out and cant stand your bathroom anymore? SCREAM IT. Are you worried about your future? Voice it. 

The Lord will hear you. He will guide you. He will carry you through.

THIS is what I know.

Week 3

I started another period, dangit. I had one at the start of week 1 for crying out loud.

I started a new blood pressure medication this week that will allow me to go off birth control (praises!) and that would be safe to be on while pregnant. We are seeing how my body is adjusting to being on it. So far, my blood pressure has remained steady (or as steady as it ever is) but I've now developed some nasty migraines. And I still have to be on birth control since we werent sure how I would react. Its been a pretty rough week to be honest.

The food thing has been interesting. I've been doing intermittent fasting, and because my stomach shrinks, I'm not especially hungry. Feeling sick from medication and a period doesn't help either. So I've been not eating enough according to myfitnesspal. I even try eating an extra apple, or some cheese before bed so my calories are high enough to even complete my daily diary and I've failed a few days to do that.

My workouts have been less than stellar. I hit my doctors minimum of 3 days a week--i ended up doing 4. My personal goal was 5 days. However it got up to 105 degrees and it was 95 degrees in my garage--and the heat combined with the way I was feeling...just didnt lend to good workouts.

I also am struggling with motivation to work out due to stress. Jace had interviewed for a promotion which we both desperately needed him to get. He has been so tired of his work situation and needing a change, and a nice bump in pay was something our family needed. My work flow had been slow and so i have been working overtime to change that. Its definitely helping, but its lead to LONG nights, and my mornings and nash's naptime being filled with work, not work outs. :( I'll find the balance, I know I just wasnt this week.

My endocrinologist thought she felt something on my thyroid at my first appointment with her and she wanted me to get an ultrasound. I did that this week too. Now I'm freaking out that something may be wrong. I've never had an issue with my thyroid, so I'm hoping thats not the case.

I weighed in again and lost 1 pound. So i'm technically down 5 pounds in 3 weeks. Its a start.