Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Have Beautiful Lashes & Help Save Babies!!

It’s that time of year again and we are gearing up to March For Babies! This will be our 6th year supporting the March of Dimes and their efforts to give all babies a healthy start at life! Many of you have donated and/or walked with us over the years and here is yet another great way you can help! You can visit our Team Page by Clicking Here!

By now, I KNOW you’ve heard about Younique’s 3D Fiber Lashes Mascara. If you know me, you know I love love mascara and am rarely seen without it. For years and years I used Maybelline’s Volum’ Express Falsies and loved it. I was happy to pay my $6-$7 once a month on what I considered was a great, reliable product.


I started hearing people talk about this new mascara… this “3D” mascara that was supposedly unlike any other out there. I won’t lie, with all the talk, I was interested in trying it to see what the fuss was all about. After looking to order, I could NOT bring myself to pay $29 for a mascara, especially since I had already found the perfect one for me. You know the old saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”? Yeah, that was my take on it. Over several months, my curiosity grew as I continued to hear more and more about Younique’s 3D Fiber Mascara, yet I still stuck to my guns.


In October my curiosity ended when I ended up winning a set of the 3D mascara at our local MoMs vendor night – I was stoked and was so anxious to try it out the next day. Although the application process, which includes applying both a transplanting gel & the fibers, took a few days to perfect, the results were amazing! It’s been five months since I tried the 3D lashes and I have not picked up a tube of Maybelline since. The BEST PART is that during those five months I have only re-ordered ONE TIME. Seriously, one set lasts SO much longer than my old mascara. I was spending almost as much on multiple Maybelline tubes over the course of several months as I have on the one set of Younique’s.

I went out and bought a fresh tube of Maybelline to show you the difference between the two. I personally don’t put any mascara on my bottom lashes as they’re wayy too long but here is a nice look at my top lashes all done up…

No mascara.


Left, no mascara. Right, two coats of Maybelline.


Left, two coats of Younique’s 3D Lashes. Right, two coats of Mabelline.




As you can see, quite a difference! Maybelline offers great results but Younique’s 3D Fiber Lashes takes it to a whole new level!

Out with the old…

younique20 In with the new!


Nicole Baca, one of my fellow multiple mamas and a Younique Independent Distributors, has offered to donate 100% her proceeds to the March of Dimes on ALL orders placed through our blog for the next 10 days.  ALL PROCEEDS, YA’LL… not 10% or 50% but 100%, how awesome is that?! If you are like me and hesitate to spend your money on an unfamiliar product, I encourage you to try it. Not only may you be as surprised as I was, but you’d also be helping a GREAT cause and  funding research being done to help babies everywhere! If you are not completely satisfied, no worries, Younique has a 14 day love it guarantee. If you are not happy with your order, you can send it back for a FULL refund!

To learn more about the 3D Fiber Lashes or to ORDER some for yourself, Click Here! We appreciate you ordering and helping babies, like ours, have a better chance at survival if born prematurely!

Still not ready to order but want a chance to try Younque’s 3D Fiber Lashes?! I will be giving away a FREE set of 3D Fiber Lashes to one lucky follower! Each person who comments under this post will be entered for a chance to win their own 3D Mascara – all you have to do is comment! If you don’t have an account to sign in with, leave your email so we can contact you! Winner will be drawn at random on April 5th and will be notified immediately, you will have 72 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Quads – 6 Year Check Up!


I’ll start by saying thank you ALL for sharing your experience with Celiac Disease, I got an overwhelming amount of support and have so many great sources now, thanks to you guys! We did hear back from Dr. Russo and he told us that last week’s biopsies did confirm Celiac Disease in Baxlyn. We switched her to 100% gluten free (the best to our knowledge, anyways) as of Friday. Our game plan is to do another blood draw in six months to check her numbers again. In the meantime, we will hope that the GF diet will eliminate her tummy pain and constipation issues. We’re almost a week into her diet and she still has continuous discomfort but we’re told it can take up to several months for it to go away completely. Luckily, our kids are overall great eaters. Baxlyn has liked 99% of what she’s tried so far and hasn’t complained ONE time of not being able to have what the others have. A super special thank you to our physical therapist, Ashley, for being so thoughtful and bringing Miss B this fun basket full of GF goodies!

baxlyn gf basket

Our pediatrician’s office never ceases to amaze me. From the moment we walked in the door the nurses tag teamed and immediately started their assessments. Due to being born early, we continue to check their hearing and vision at every annual check up. While everyone’s hearing checked out just fine, our eyes were a different story. Dr. Reyes believes Baxlyn may have an astigmatism and Brody has divergent eyes. We’ve noticed A LOT going on with Brody’s eyes, which causes great concern for his shunt. He, Bret and I had a “date night” (his words, bless his heart) at the ER Monday evening undergoing a CT and Xrays to make sure all was well. Thankfully, he checked out just fine! We will be adding yet another doc to our team and following up with a new pediatric ophthalmologist in a week or so.


Six Year Stats:

Brody: 43lbs 3’9in

Baxlyn: 42lbs 3’10in

Kylee: 44lbs 3’11in

Korbin: 43lbs 3’9in

Quite a difference than the 2 & 3lbs they started at!



Kylee, Korbin & Brody were champs while getting their blood drawn to check their numbers that would indicate Celiac Disease. We should know those results by early next week. Below, Brody showing Dr. Reyes how strong his legs are :)

6yr1 The one and only, Dr. Reyes!


Thursday, March 12, 2015

Baxlyn’s EGD (Upper GI, Biopsy, Scope)

4am came early this morning and we headed to Cook Children’s Surgery Center. Just like her BFF, Mr. Korbin, she didn’t show any nerves before heading back for her procedure – such a champ :)

b biopsy 1

The procedure itself went well and only took about 15 minutes. Dr. Russo wanted to do the biopsies to confirm what he believes is Celiac Disease (see previous post). We were expecting to go in, have it done, the doc come out and say “OK, we will wait for results!” While we did hear that, we also learned of yet another concern Dr. Russo has. As he entered through her stomach to get to her intestines, he notice her tummy had food in it. She hadn’t eaten for a good 12-13 hours therefore there shouldn’t have been any food in there. He said what was there was rather large, nothing he could suction out. Really abnormal. He said she *could* have some motility issues going on in addition to what *might* be celiac.

We now have three things on our radar 1) Blood work which indicates Celiac Disease. 2) Chronic constipation. 3) Food in tummy.

He said right now all we can do is wait for results on the biopsies. Although he is going to push to have them tomorrow, it could be next week before we know anything. Dr. Russo did say that he could see that the lining of her small intestine had “carpet” (the villi that I talked about previously), the biopsies will show us if that carpet is “shag” or “berber”, we want shag carpet. He said if we do get 100% confirmation of the Celiac Disease, the gluten free diet should fix everything from her tummy pain to her constipation BUT it doesn’t explain why there is food hanging out in her tummy.

Bret and I left a bit more confused than when we were when we went in and are anxious to hear the results from today’s scope. We do feel confident tho that Miss B is in great hands! Please continue to pray we can alleviate her abdominal pain sooner than later! Thanks for the support and will keep you all posted!

b biopsy 2

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Another Day, Another Diagnosis…


Many of you who I am friends with on Facebook know we’ve been asking for prayers for our Sweet Baxlyn. Here’s the scoop. Baxlyn has dealt with tummy discomfort for quite some time… for years, actually. She has mentioned her tummy hurting since about the time she could talk. In the beginning she would say her tummy hurt a couple times a week for a couple of weeks and then we wouldn’t hear anything from her for several weeks/months. She then would complain just a bit for a little while and then nothing for a while. Over and over. All the time she said her tummy hurt, she still acted normal. She always played, ate and was as active as she was when it seemed she was not in any discomfort. She, and the other quads, have always dealt with constipation, which is a very common long term problem for preemies. Miralax has been a regular in our house for years. We always chalked her “discomfort” up to being constipated and never looked deeper into the issue as it never affected her other than an occasional complaint.

Over the past 6 months or so, Baxlyn’s discomfort has gotten much much worse. Everyday she tells me “Mommy, my tummy hurts.” Lately, I’m hearing those words dozens of times a day. I took her a few months back to be examined by our wonderful pediatrician and we decided to be more aggressive with the Miralax, again assuming it was constipation. After a few weeks of no change, our doctor send us for abdominal X-rays which confirmed she was “FOTS” (full of toddler stool). Again, we were told to up the Miralax. With her discomfort only becoming more frequent and beginning to bring her to tears at times, I knew something just wasn’t right and that Miralax wasn’t the answer we needed.

Our pediatrician sent us to a gastroenterologist (GI). Dr. Russo met with Baxlyn and I last week and we talked and talked and went over her history. After a manual exam, Dr. Russo wanted to do blood work right away. Friday, Dr. Russo called me and said…

“I’m afraid Baxlyn has Celiac Disease.”

What? I was stunned. I asked him exactly what Celiac Disease was and he explained it’s the “gluten thing I hear so much about”. People with Celiac Disease have an autoimmune disorder that can occur in genetically predisposed people where the ingestion of gluten leads to damage in the small intestine. There are Villi that line the inside of the small intestine and in people with Celiac, the gluten in foods damage those Villi which keeps the person from being able to absorb the nutrients needed to grow and live a healthy life. It is estimated to affect 1 in 100 people worldwide. I was told many people choose a gluten free (GF) diet as it makes them feel better in general. However, it is essential for people with Celiac Disease to have a GF diet. Good news is that because so many people are choosing to go GF, stores are starting to carrying more products that are safe for people with Celiac.

Although based on her blood work alone, he feels 99% sure Celiac Disease is what we are dealing with, Dr. Russo will be performing an EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy) this week to confirm the diagnosis. He will take several biopsies of her small intestine. He said the walls of the intestines are supposed to look like a shag carpet and with Celiac, they often look like tiles. He also said, due to being a quadruplet, he thinks there is a good chance the other quads will have it as well. After we confirm Celiac in Baxlyn, he will go on to test the others. I’d imagine that needing to go all GF for Baxlyn, we would automatically go GF for all of them (us). That being said, it is very important to know if the others have it as well for overall health reasons as it can affect many other areas.

I feel overwhelmed, to say the very least. The condition is treatable with a strict diet but it will mean a HUGE lifestyle change for our family. I personally couldn’t read a food label to save my life and have never been on any kind of diet. For now I’m depending on the good ole’ internet to learn more about the disease and what all comes along with it. I’m hoping to connect with other moms who have a child with Celiac to learn more. Our doctor will also be setting us up with a dietician to help direct us as well.

For now, please continue to pray for us. I feel like we juggle SO much these days and it seems as time goes on, more and more “medical things” are thrown our way. You are all aware of the surgeries three of the four underwent just before Christmas but there have been other things we’ve been faced with that we’ve chosen, for their own privacy, not to blog about for now. Now this…. which isn’t something that will “pass” like many other things. Since NICU, Miss B has had the “easiest ride” as far as long term doctors go. While check ups, procedures and trips to hospitals are a regular occurrence for Brody & Kylee, a lot of this is new for B. She’s a very brave little thing, that’s for sure, but I know she’s nervous about what is going on and I’m trying to explain things the best I can to her, especially for not understanding it all myself. She will be going in super early on Thursday morning for her scope. She will be put under anesthesia and the procedure itself will only take about 30 minutes. We’ve been told not to change anything in her diet just yet, not until we get results from her EGD. In the meantime, I’d love to hear any experience YOU may have with Celiac Disease, especially in children. I have so many questions, I don’t even know where to begin!

In the end we know and trust that God has it all in His hands and he has a perfect plan! We also know that He will be with us every step of the way, regardless of any challenges we face! I’ll keep you all posted!

(Photo credit: Amy Horton Photography.)

Monday, March 9, 2015

Quads 6th BirthDAY!

Bret and I surprised our squad with lunch at school on the day of their birthday! We’ve never done visited them for lunch at school before so it was a nice treat for all of us! We stopped by Subway and patiently waited in the empty cafeteria for their kindergarten class to arrive. When they walked in, they literally walk right by us and didn’t even notice we were there. It was all of their little friends who gasped, smiled and told them “hey isn’t that your mommy and daddy?!!?” They were so surprised! We enjoyed hearing about their morning thus far and spent nearly the rest of the time waving to the other little kindergarteners across the room from our private little table. So fun seeing them in their school environment!

6th birthday quads 

  Like their Mama, these kiddos love to go out to eat. We had a second surprise in store for them that evening! We told them we were going to take them to eat at Lahacienda Ranch for their birthday dinner but they didn’t know that most of the family would be there to surprise them! Everyone was there, seated before we walked in and yelled “surprise!!” as we entered – so fun!IMG_9792 IMG_9790

IMG_9798  IMG_9815


IMG_9822 IMG_9828

 They especially loved when the staff came out and sang Happy Birthday to them and brought them a birthday cake!IMG_9838  IMG_9834

IMG_9845 IMG_9852

Of course the *reason* this is one of their favorite places to come… the horses. We spent a small fortune and stood in the freezing cold weather for some time so they could all ride the horses dozens of times but the giggles and smiles on their faces made it all worth it!


IMG_9860 IMG_9872  IMG_9883 IMG_9893 IMG_9897 

A special thank to all who came out to celebrate with us! Stay tuned for a glimpse at their PaRtY!!!!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Snow Days in Texas

Long time, no blog. My intentions are there but the time it takes and the “down time” it requires….not so much. Lots to share a lots to catch you up on over the next week or so! Here in north Texas we were blessed with beautiful weather during January and most of February. For a while there, I swear every weekend’s weather was sent straight from Heaven above. Just a few days after their, again beautiful, birthday party weather, the winter was upon us. Here in the south you just NEVER know with weather. 70s one day and an ice storm the next.

Our first day off school was technically an “ice day”. Despite the pictures looking like snow, this was really a mixture of sleet and ice. Nevermind a select few children in bath robes. It’s Texas, we don’t have all the get up you notherners do and work with what we got ;) The pictures below is of them attempting to slide down the hill leading to our creek behind the house. Uncle Chris was a champ and showed them ummm “how it’s done” while Bethany and I stood back laughing.


Well prepared wearing his football cleats, Chris spun the kids around in circles on the icy driveway using a large tote. They LOVED it! We won’t talk about the one kid who leaned and went flying out of the bucket…and we certainly won’t show the video clip we got of the incident…whoops.



The first TRUE snow day we got, the school called and said Mrs. Kylee wasn’t feeling well. I ended up picking all of them up early. Kylee collapsed under the covers of our nice warm bed while these three goobers played outside…

L-R Korbin, Baxlyn & Brody   IMG_9905

I absolutely LOVE how everything looks when it snows. We are surrounded by huge trees that are just gorgeous when covered in the snow! 

IMG_9913  IMG_9922 IMG_9926 IMG_9939  IMG_9946To my surprise the three actually stayed out for a while. Every time it snows I spend 45 minutes getting everyone dressed and ready only to have them come to the door crying and frozen after 93 seconds of play. Must have been the hot chocolate that kept them out longer this time ;)


Korbin lasted the longest at about an hour. He was SO excited about the “real” icicles he found around the property and collected them all in a box!


This is later that evening. Uncle Chris came over to help them build a snowman. Side note, I assure you Brooke is not a vicious dog, we caught her mid-bark ;)


 Apparently this particular snow was not “snowman friendly” and wouldn’t stick. We ended up using their plastic tub to mold our snowman’s body and gave him a round head…


We had another snow day this past week and opted to stay nice and warm inside. I was seeing lots and lots of “homemade ice cream” pictures on my Facebook feed so we gave it a whirl. 6 cups of fresh snow, 1 cup of milk, 1/4 cup of sugar and 1/2tbsp of vanilla all mixed together actually made some pretty good ice cream! The kids had fun making it and to my surprise, it was pretty yummy!













Thankfully it looks like beautiful spring weather it’s is our near future. The snow is fun for a day or two, but we are MORE than ready for our green grass and flowers!

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