Wednesday, November 6, 2013

McGuffey Family Pictures 2013

 Piper Ann 9 months
 Daddys' girl and 18 wks pregnant

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

3 Years With My Special Someone

In such a short time.In 3 years my life has changed rapidly. 
My life has turned into our life.
My dreams has become our dreams. 
My family went from 8 to 2 to 3....
It's hard, like everything worth having you have to work at it everyday.
I remember when- you were "My Special Someone"
When we weren't officially together.
Before I called you beloved, right about the time you became my friend
you became special to me in my heart and you always will be.
I promised- 3 years ago.

It's always nice to have "someone' to cry and laugh with.
Something I take for granted daily.

 Someone to be by your side in lifes hardest times.
And enjoy Gods greatest blessings with.

 Someone to have and to hold.
To cleave to.
Someone to ask you on fancy dates
Someone to be a godly father to my children and to be a parent with.
Someone to lead a Christian home and family.

A friend, a counselor and guide.
Happy 3rd anniversary to my special "Someone"
Thank you for loving the Lord and being a godly example.
Thank you for loving and caring for me.
Thank you, yes, for being your crazy self and being a dreamer- keep dreaming big.
Thank you for being a strong Daddy-
You are doing a wonderful job.
I love you Isaiah McGuffey-

Friday, August 9, 2013

Living In a Round Yurt - Week One

What is a yurt?
A yurt is a a fancy name for a round hut.

Ger is the correct term if you live in Mongolia- But we call ours a Western Pacific Yurt.
My husband is still finishing it up but we moved in Saturday. One of the worst days- I threw my husband. I cried a lot we made up and worked together happily. I HATE moving and I'm so thankful to my sweet friends and brother for coming to my rescue. I lived in a really big house until I wedded my husband and there was plenty of room and always a place for everything. Yes, just about every winter we were dirt poor and our food supply suffered a little but we were never without power or plumbing. Then I got married and lived in a cute retirement cabin that was a haven to all who came to it. My Grandma Sydow even wanted to live there.

We moved into a 480 sq ft round yurt or 19 4ft sections connected to make it round. The idea is romantic and it will be beautiful when it is finished but right now I'm figuring out what to do with this odd triangle I will have between my fridge and the bathroom wall.
Yes, I'm a spoiled rotten American girl who has no idea what roughin' it means. But this past week I have found out.
We have a blue (my favorite color :) porta potty outside and to the right of our door...probably 4 yards away. Tuesday I felt like I was getting dehydrated so I drank a lot of bottled water before going to bed (dumb). About 4 times that night I ran out down the ladder (as we have no steps yet) to potty in the dark with my cellphone light-screaming each time at the poles planted in the ground that look like scary men about to kill me but are really a porch in progress. Coyotes howling I brave the potty each time.

(Photo taken by my sister Chasity)

We shower, cook and wash our clothes up at my in-laws.
We have a refrigerator. We have an air mattress that we borrowed from a neighbour. Two dressers and a make shift closet. Piper has her own bed and a little dresser.
The walls are covered in tar paper awaiting the pretty wood that will cover them. The roof leaks a wee bit but it is waiting to be finished.

You might think- oh, wow your husband is a slacker but he isn't. He is a man with not enough time. He is a dreamer with a million crazy ideas- I fell in love with that crazy dreamer and now I'm trying to bite my tongue through the hard times and help those dreams come true. He works away from home 12 hours a night. Has no time to watch sports or have hobbies right now. I wish I could give him a day to go fishing with his buddy. A day to have no worries. He is the hardest working man who badly needs a break- which we will get at the end of September when we go to the west coast! YAY!
There is much to be done but looking back on all the work already accomplished I can say we will get there- maybe not on my timing but it will come.

Piper enjoying the nice wood floor in the yurt.

We will have plumbing, we will have water, and we will stay together no matter how hard it gets.
I care too much what other people think, I care too much about what I think is normal. I've cried a lot. I hate being dependent on others for my needs. I love being organized and having a place for everything and get stressed with the boxes of stuff that has no home.
I hate roughin' it.
I love these modern things called running water and a working well pump. Thank you Romans for figuring that out!
Soon my husband will figure it out too and things will be much more comfortable. The stress will go down as each thing we own finds it's place on a shelf or a cupboard.....just not spread all over the floor...ok ok.
So that is how i am feeling. I wish I was more positive and I strive for it.
God has us in this place at this time learning these things for a reason.

Friday, April 19, 2013


Being a mother.
What does that mean?
It means you've joined the circus that million of other Moms have joined.
You juggle the times between taking care of your family, work and friends.
You make sure that you have packed up everything you need before going on your next trip.
"Don't for get the daiper bag honey!"
You must have balance on a thin tight rope when things get shaky- don't forget to take care of your husband.
There is practice of manners and potty training.
There is food thrown.
There are times when you want to stick the animal in the cage.
But that doesn't  mean you wouldn't jump through a fiery hoop for your child.

Being a mother means you are going to have the best job.... being a mother means you are going to have an exciting life. You invest in little people. You make more joy in the world. You lose sleep you lose your mind but you find you don't mind that you spend all your time with these beautiful crazy kids. You cry when you don't have the answers they need. You cry when you don't know what to do.
I couldn't be a Mom without my husband.
I couldn't be a Mom without my Mom.
Kids they are the most valuable thing on earth. They are the future. Be patient. Don't push them too hard... give them room to grow. Don't smother them.
A plant needs to breathe.
Take them in the sunshine take them by the hand hold them tight and kiss them every day and night. Make them smile every day. Being a mother what a gift.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Potty Training Me

Yep, it's true.
Piper is potty training me.
It started when I first saw her poop... "Gross...I wouldn't want to be sitting in that!"
Then when she was one wk old she went through 5 diapers while Isaiah and I were on a date....and her Granny had double diapered her for the trip home. I laughed when I saw it. Then a few hours she goes again...more I waited and went through the diapers put more ointment on her bad rash...then out of the corner of my eye I saw the toilet a few feet from her changing table.
Hmmm yep- I set my newborn barely a wk old on the pot.....and she finished her doo doo there.
 Sitting on Grandma Nans potty going pee pee

I had heard of Moms putting their babies on the toilet before we had Piper and I thought "I will never have time to do that- but that sounds like a good idea." I heard that they took a little pot with them in the car...sounded like a lot of trouble....and that their babies didn't wear diapers...crazy!
But when I saw how much my dear little babe was pooping and how fast I was going through diapers.
One of her regulars- huge and gross....glad I don't have to clean it up!

Then I read in a child training book that all infants protest a bowel movement and it's true! And that women in Africa carry their infants around on them naked and have to learn when their baby needs to go so they can set then down on the ground with their feet in a squatting position. So I watched for Piper to start to fuss for no reason and I'd rush her to the toilet and she would poop for me.
Now she poops less often but a lot more at once.
We are bonding, communicating and I'm training her that going on the potty is where we go potty not in our pants.
I know of a lot of parents (and so do you) that struggle with potty training because their child is used to going in their pants and doesn't care plain and simple.

Piper can't talk, walk or wipe herself but she is training me to look for her signs that she needs to go- like sucking on her fist would give me a sign that she needs food or yawning means she needs a nap.
Then I do my part to train her by naming what she is doing I use "doo doo" in a low voice and "pee pee" in a high voice to name what she is doing.
She pees a lot so it is hard for me to catch and I think that will take some more time for us to get down but she waits for me to set her on the pot to doo doo unless I ignore her need too long. 
Last Sunday I was busy- we had church and were in town running errands for a few hours and I only took her potty once.
I sometimes fear people at church will hear her fussing in the bathroom and think I'm torturing her....but that is just what she does before she poops- wiggles and fusses and then relaxes and goes....yeah I have her bowel movements down to a science.
So anyways she woke mid nap and was fussing- I was hoping she would just go back to sleep...but nope she had to poop and the noises came and I regretting not taking her. She gave me plenty of warning but it was too late...she ruined her dress...all the way up her back.
If I just let her poop in her pants all the time I figure I would go through a lot of clothes....thank goodness she poops on the potty!
Why am I posting this? To encourage other Mommies to start training NOW!
It's so rewarding- Piper always gives me grins after I praise her for pottying on the toilet.
It doesn't take that much time...if you have time to change a million diapers a day you have time to set your baby on the toilet.
My family is very supportive and one lady at church even took her potty after I told her about it.
But some of course think I am crazy- but they aren't reaping the benefits...they are changing more diapers.
For more info- look up elimination communication.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Piper Ann: A Birth Story

Sometimes you can plan and prepare, be as ready as you can, but things don't always go the way you thought was best.
Thursday night we ate fried corn tacos- they were soooo good.....I made enough that we could have left overs the next day for lunch. Well, I ate one every hour that night until they were all gone-gross I know- and I've never ate so much since I've been pregnant.
Friday morning I had realllllly bad gas pain from the tacos right? or were they contractions? I couldn't tell so I chose the gas and as I went to the midwife for a check up appointment I apologized for the gas I would have and they laughed at me and I didn't pass gas while I was there but continued to have this cramping gas feeling through to the evening.
 I was 1cm like I had been the past 2 wks.
Isaiah went to work, I tried to take a nap but could't seem to relax so I went up to my inlaws.
More Mexican food at their house! Nachos! Yummy-
At about 8pm I felt like I was going to pass gas so I excused myself and on the way to the bathroom....
"Uhhh ummm I'm LEAKING!"
Yeup, my water broke and it was one of the weirdest feelings- like really happy but why does the water keep coming and coming. ( I thought when your water broke WOOSH and all the water came out but no, it keeps leaking out until you have the baby)
I called Isaiah at work and soon he was on his way to pick Lawana (my mother in law) and I up so I could do most of my laboring at home. My contractions were 10- 15 mins apart and they were a piece of cake to breathe through but weird- like my false labor they would be far apart then really close. At about 1am I decided I have to be close to having this baby my contractions were making me stand up and do a funny dance to shake away the cramping. All the while keeping my mid wife in Missoula updated on everything via text.
So we head to my Moms house closer to Missoula.
By 3am I beg Isaiah to check my cervix- I HAVE to be close....I want to have this baby by morning and enjoy her all day. I'm at 3cm-disappointing-  I tell Isaiah to try and sleep...he sleeps like a baby and I labor with weird close together then far apart contractions until finally at 6:30am my midwife texts me to come in.
Yay! I'm going to go and pop this baby out within a couple of hours right?!
Wrong, at 7am I'm still at 3 cm and Piper is posterior and her head is pushing down on the birth canal ahead of my cervix so unless she moves back or my cervix moves forward my contractions are doing nothing to help me dilate. So we try a side laying position but my contractions are still weird and not consistent so that's not working.
I was getting into agony and exhaustion but my awesome mid wife and her dear sweet nurse helped me get through each contraction. I got dehydrated from puking so they put two bags of fluids in me and some kind of herb concoction that would act as a natural pitocin.
By Noon Saturday I was running out of time My water broke so I needed to have this little girl by 8pm that night or C-section (AHHHH!).
God sent me an angel.
Marlene: doula for over 20 yrs and a believer in the power of God
Called the birth center to chat with my mid wife and see how she was and my mid wife told her I was there laboring but the baby was in the wrong position and would not move so Marlene volunteered to come help if I wanted her to.
YES! I would do anything.
She had me basically stand on my head...serious.
I had my legs bent on a chair and my head to the ground and when I had a contraction Marlene and Isaiah shook my hips back and forth to get the baby out of the pelvis so she could go back in the right way.
Sounds crazy but it felt so relieving from all the back pressure I was having and it worked with some other positions as well with all the hip shaking Piper was where she needed to be!
BUT it was 1:30pm and I'm still 3cm ....I was running out of time, my contractions weren't strong enough or consistent and my wise midwife said it was time to head to the hospital choosing to err on the side of caution.
So off to the hospital...a little disappointing but she was coming soon right?!
Eh, kinda not- on the drive to the hospital Piper had moved back into her bad position and I was in agony again.
2:30pm I'm still at 3cm and I'm crying because I'm so tired and feel like I'm going to pass out. So as I walked to my room with my mid wife she advised me to get an epidural so I could rest and have the strength to push.
Stubborn and full of womanly pride I said no I' fine I can do this. Then another one hits and I have to hold the wall in the hallway to keep from falling down and then I pray and ask God what He wants me to do. The whole labor I had been praying telling God what to do "God, please help me to dilate and get this baby safely out, oh and FAST!" but not once had I asked for His will to be done and for Him to get the glory for this birth.
So, pride on the floor I got the epidural, relaxed and fell asleep off and on talking with Marlene while Piper moved into the good position and my cervix came forward.
Marlenes' wisdom: she thinks if I haven't gotten the epidural , my back was so tight and tense, that I would not have been able to relax enough for my cervix to come forward and the baby to move into the right position.
Side note: Having an epidural was nothing like I heard....I could still feel everything fine, even Piper wiggling around- the only thing that I couldn't feel was the contractions...weird huh. I had always thought they would make you completely numb from the waist down but mine was perfect- just enough relief to help me relax and not tense up- also I got the minium pitocin since I just needed a little help keeping my contractions close together.
My 2nd angel came.
Garnet: an old experienced night shift nurse with an army attitude.
it wasn't that my first nurse was bad but that Garnet was so motivated to get me to have Piper before we ran out of time that made me love her.
At 8pm she checked me and basically stripped my membranes, not contracting she could stretch me as much as she liked (yeah sorry that sounds awful but it made me so happy and grow up this is a part of life) and contracting I was at 6cm
So she told me to rest for pushing and 5 mins later I was calling her to say I felt like I needed to have a BM and she told me that everyone I wanted in there should hurry up.
So Isaiah called my Mom, Lawana, and my good friend Jeri to the room and here we go.
Marlene on one side and Isaiah on the other with their arms under my legs and my hands in theirs I was ready for the best work out of my life with Marlene as my personal trainer coaching me through each contraction on when to breath-hold it-push-breath-hold-it-push. My Mom was my water boy and Jeri was the soothing comfort in my ear in between pushes encouraging me on.
Isaiah said I pushed for about 1/2 hr but it seemed faster than that- maybe because it was my favorite part.
The nurses brought in a mirror so I could see Piper coming and when she was almost out Isaiah took the OBs and Lawana took Isaiahs' place on my right side. Isaiah held her first then stuck her on my chest.
 It was precious.
I was so happy to have a healthy screaming baby in my arms and as Isaiah came to my side and spoke to her she stopped and listened to him.
Isaiah and I had so much love right then I want to go back to that moment over and over.
She looks just like him and she had hair!.

All glory to God.
Thank you Lord for this wonderful gift sent from heaven. 

 That curl was the first thing to stick out.
 8lbs 2 oz
born at 8:49 Feb 2nd, 2013
20 1/2 inches long
14" head
 In Daddys arms
 3 days old- hanging out with Mama

Cute socks my mid-wife knitted while I was in labor
Yeah she is pretty awesome- she did have 26 hours.

Monday, January 28, 2013


40 weeks and one day and still no baby.

So I'm going to tell you a little bit about how I'm feeling...after my story.
A wk ago Saturday I went into false labor...meaning I was having all the contractions but no dilation- it sucked (don't read that word if you are reading this Lanwana). So I got all excited, all cramped out, and we drove to my mothers, got next to no sleep, the contractions completely stopped then came back with a crazy intensity that made me throw up and Sunday morning my midwife checks me and I'm 1cm.
I feel like a failure.
Everyone knew I was having contractions and that the baby would be here soon. My husband already had that "I'm so proud of you" look on his face. Our mothers were giddy at the expectation of the new grandbaby they would soon be holding. And me, I was thinking finally I get to meet my baby girl and today is going to be her Birthday and every year we are going to celebrate this day with joy that God gave us this beautiful gift- this is going to be one of the best days of my life. Every contraction that was so tight I couldn't breathe and I just held my belly and prayed that we would make it through and I would be strong for her.
Then it came to a stop....they got further and further apart until I was having one contraction an hr then 3-5 a day.
I wanted to cry but I just kept it in.
My husband was so sweet. That Sunday night he drove me 40 miles away from home to go to another small town and have a diner date.
We laughed, and talked and talked, ate crinkle cut fries and a chocolate malt. I just enjoyed the moment with my husband and tried to forget that our baby was almost here but not yet. We stayed up late and watched movies and snuggled. I felt so in love with him for distracting me from the disappointment.
So here we are a wk later and I feel impatience building up in me . I want her to just surprise me. I want to not even be thinking about going into labor and all of the sudden get whammed with it.
But I can't help being scared now... that my body wont do what it's supposed to. I know this is totally wrong and I'm fighting it hard.
I keep praying for God to increase my faith and keep me from this fear.
And really as my mid wife says- I don't have any control over when she will come so relax.