Tuesday, 21 February 2017

When you get an abnormal ultrasound result..

So a little over a month ago we had our 20 week ultrasound..
everything seemed fine, we didn't need any further photos, the technician showed us all the parts and she acted as if it was A-OK.

a few days later when we went to my family doctor to find out the baby's gender the doctor said the ultrasound looked good but there was one note...

"Probably a normal variant but,"
 
probably a normal variant....
PROBABLY A NORMAL VARIANT.
wtf, what's that mean?! 
 
that was our reaction.
 
the ultrasound results said 'probably a normal variant' but the shape of baby's skull was a tad off so they wanted to do some further tests just to get a clearer idea.

**********************

 
at the start of your pregnancy the doctor will offer a variety of tests, I'm not 100% on everything they look for but I believe its things like down syndrome, spina bifida..
(for the sake of the blog lets call them 'birth defects')
but these tests can be inaccurate, lead to more tests, lead to potentially invasive, possibly dangerous tests..
its just kind of a can of worms that Nick and I said wasn't necessary.
that was our personal choice and I hold no sway either way for others decisions.
 
going into having a family we knew there were 1 million things that can go wrong, and of course we would want to be prepared for potentially urgent health issues.
but any 'defect' that may be present would not change us wanting that baby.
 
does that make sense??
for us there is no issue that is a deal breaker.
we know life's gambles but we love and want whatever child the universe sends us.
 

so bringing us back to the ultrasound..
they suggested we get the first round of those first rejected, tests ASAP.
I was at 20 weeks and that's the cut off point for this test.
 


I said of course.
it was only a blood test and if there was a chance of my baby needing any extra assistance in the health or birthing arena, that is something we would never decline!
 
the doctor said there was not any other flags on the ultrasound, the spine, heart, nose, limbs, basically everything else you could measure was flawless so, like the paper said  "probably a normal variant".
Still, you cant help but worry and of course (the worst) google.
 
We didn't tell anyone about the variant, not because the outcome mattered but because we knew it would blow up into a bigger issue than it needed to be. My family can be judgemental and you know how social media can be, I could already hear the
"omg life will be so much harder if.."
 
I cried so much that night...
what bothered me was the would be thoughts of 'disappointment', not that people would lack love but they would put an asterisk next to my baby as if a defect would limit them.
 
I NEVER put limits on my kids.
I know they're going to have different strengths and weaknesses, unique features and capabilities but I hope I can nurture that individual style and help them grow into them best selves.
 
I always say my parents had a version of tough love that pointed out my flaws instead of building up my strengths. Tough love isn't bad or wrong but if you're going to be tough you better also be positive.
 
so all these crazy thoughts ran through my mind...
was it bad of me to feel upset for what others would think..???
because now I feel bad for feeling bad!
did that mean I cared what they thought??????
because I don't!
I really, really believe success is a personal standard.
 
 
 and then there's,
would a baby with a lot of doctors/specialist appointments be hard? yes.
would the potential of serious health problems scare me to death? absolutely.
those were the really terrifying thoughts.
everything else is adaptable!
 
I read SO much about about 'defects', I was an encyclopedia of information and statistics.
I read a ridiculous amount about down syndrome because at my age the chances of having a down baby is about 1/900 which seems high and low simultaneously...
 
but at the end of the day all we could do was wait...  
 

 
 I mean, I was not irrational with fear or anything.
I've just always been a reader! I cannot watch a Netflix series without reading every single rating and spoiler about the series first! its a disease! hahaha
 
the results from the test could take 2-4 weeks so eventually my research slowed and I sort of forgot all about it.. the baby is moving like crazy now and making me sick, sick, sick. plus Elliott is crazy busy so I don't have much time for distractive thoughts...
 
 until the call came in....
 
the doctor called Nicks phone, which was weird..
then he asked to speak with me, which was even weirder...
just tell Nick.
you called him.
 
nothing sets your mind into panic mode faster than those 22 seconds between the doctor calling and him asking to speak to you....
 
I thought FOR SURE more tests were going to be needed.
 
The doctor: Hi Holly, how are you?
Me: great thanks.
Doctor: I just wanted to let you know the blood tests came back and everything is great.
 

a blood test doesn't guarantee anything, you would not believe how many stories I read about babies not having a downs diagnosis until after birth!
but for the most part, we are young with no history of anything in either family so a healthy baby girl should be joining us in June!

and just like that we're back to anticipating the average unknowns!

what's she going to look like?
what's her weight going to be?
will she have hair?
what day will she arrive?
how will she arrive? (C-section???)
please, please, please sleep like your brother.
what if Elliott doesn't like her? hehehe JK
he loves babies so fingers crossed!
 
 
if you do get a 'variant' test back ever don't be afraid to talk to people!
I find Baby Center AWESOME for real life questions and answers, they have everything from planning for baby, through pregnancy and beyond.
If you're a reader like me you may get addicted, fair warning.
and you can always send me a message, I'm a tardy replier tbh but I will make you a priority!
 
 






*if there's any language or terms that seem offensive in this post
I apologize, not at all my intention! I wasn't sure defect was the correct wording to use.. 
its just what I've seen used as a medical description. I just wanted to share my real emotions and story!


Friday, 17 February 2017

Beauty vids,Jail and MURDER..

OK DOKE.
Well what a mess I am in...

I posted a video to my personal Facebook page yesterday of Elliott dancing to MC HAMMER and Facebook jailed me for it.

I know this seems like a minor detail but when you are practically a vlogger/obsessed with documenting every moment of life.. being banned from posting videos feels like a death sentence.


the worst part is that there was no warning and no recourse seems available!
I don't know how long I am blocked from posting videos, I cannot post them to my personal facebook or my blog facebook (talk about a livelihood killer.. ) If I can't share my blog life.. I don't know what I will do.

I am trying not to panic and I will keep you posted with the outcome but for now you can follow my every move on Instagram..

https://www.instagram.com/hollyshousewifelife/

and on YouTube..

https://www.youtube.com/Hollyhousewife

I feel like if anything, maybe this will promote me to actually do some work and stop procrastinating by sharing random fb videos.. maybe... ??? hahaha

also I wanted to say a HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who contacted me about my last post, the c-section one.. thank you, thank you, thank you.

I haven't had a chance to get back to everyone individually yet but I read all the comments and stories and it feels so good hearing others experiences and having your support through these uncertain situations! #Mommasunite! and #humansunite! #thankyou :)



In other news..

I've kind of found my new favorite thing..
its making short videos!
I mean not fancy, non lighting, then edited down to a minute or so videos!

I find them so easy to film when I'm not hassled with pressure of perfection or mumbling about forever! I just film, edit down and post!

I am really, really liking them!
so far I've been sharing mostly on fb and Instagram but I thought I would also upload them to YouTube with a list of all the products I used.

That way you can rewind or replay areas and have the product list at your fingertips!

Some of the videos I've posted as is, 60 seconds but the latest I uploaded was an extended version at just under 5 mins.. in case you do want to hear me mumble about the products in a bit more detail!


 


 


AND LASTLY..
HAVE YOU WATCHED RIVERDALE???!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!!?


It is a new Netflix show.. however they're releasing the episodes one per week..
WHAT IS THAT NETFLIX?!>!?!?!?!?!?!?!
most of my love for Netflix comes from the option to stream an entire season in one day..
I am really, really, not a fan of the one episode a week release and I hope this does not become the norm.

anyway, its loosely based off the Archie comics characters!
how fun is that!

 
I mean Riverdale is a suspenseful murder mystery, torrid love, style show...
but it is SO catchy!
 
the episodes come out every Friday and I already watched todays.. so now I'm sweating it out another week. booo
 
 
that's it for now!
keep checking back though because I've got the blogging bug recently! XO

Friday, 10 February 2017

Hello, I'd like a c-section please..

this was me at my doctors appointment a few days ago.

I met my delivery doctor for the first time and anxious was not the word to describe my emotions...
I was STRESSED.

I knew that my family doctor would not be involved with the delivery and would be handing me off to the OBGYN around 20 weeks in, so I didn't bother to burden him with my delivery woes. Instead I waited anxiously for an OBGYN name to be pulled from the lottery pool and unloaded my cargo onto her.

And luckily, thankfully, amazingly, she was so supportive and understanding.

I thought for sure I had blogged about my labour and delivery with Elliott but I just searched and all I could find was my return to work post when Elliott was a year old..
and a promise to share his delivery story but at that time it was still too fresh for me to go into..

LOL that should give you an idea of where I am coming from with this C-section request!

I know things like delivery and new baby raising topics come with VERY opinionated and controversial thoughts. I don't want this post to be like that, so if you are fiercely against requested sections please just exit now.

there are many roads that lead to a healthy, happy baby and..
my chosen path (hopefully) is caesarean section..


ugh to get into the whole Elliott story would be exhausting so I will just cut to the chase.
 
I knew I was going to have trouble giving birth, I just always knew it.
Call it intuition or a natural sense or just call it crazy, but its true.
 
In Newfoundland you see your family doctor until you give birth, and at that point you see whatever delivery doctor is on call.
 
My family doctor was not a very likeable women.
I will just leave you with a few thoughts she bestowed on me:
 
"Oh you have morning sickness, well I had morning sickness and I had to work in a hospital with sick patients. imagine how hard it was for me to be pregnant."
 
^ I had HG extreme sickness and I was a letter carrier. I was throwing up in a sobeys bag on peoples front porches LOL. this is not a competition!
 
"why are you getting emotional?"
 
^ when I was two weeks overdue and my parents were only in town for a couple more days, I was hoping to get induced. she did finally sign off on an induction but it was after an emotional rollercoaster.
 
The delivery hospital was about an hour away so we made the trek and..
 
 I was in labour for about 1.5 days when they finally said I was far enough along to go into the delivery room. but I WANTED an epidural, it had always been my plan to have an epidural but for some reason they WOULD NOT give me one. They just kept brushing it off and brushing it off.
 
Finally in the delivery room I said "I WANT AN EPIDURAL!!!!!"
and the nurse was like "Oh I didn't even know you were in pain, you haven't made any sounds"
 
that was because the pain was SO, SO, severe I could not make a sound.
lol sounds funny now, but trust me, it's not.
 
they had been whispering for 2 days about a section because Elliott's heart rate kept dropping and even as I was getting the epidural the anaesthesiologist was asking "are we not doing a section??"
 
they ignored him and told me to push when I felt a contraction, they kept looking at me like 'why aren't you pushing?'
 
but I kept telling them I NEVER FELT A CONTRACTION.
NEVER. NOT ONCE.
 
all I could feel was a constant, never ending, steady, crippling, I want to die pain.
 
there is not really words to describe that kind of pain, I hope the above sentence will do it justice. ;)
 
then they told me push, so I pushed.
then they screamed at me to stop.
the baby's heart beat dropped drastically, we had to get to the ER NOW! emergency section.
then they told me it was too late and they screamed at me to push.
 
IT was horrible.
I can't even describe what was happening because it was so chaotic.
 
at the end of the day, Elliott was fine.
I had a 4th degree tear and went into surgery.
 
they say 4th degree is worse than a section for recovery. (I can't compare yet but will let you know if this section goes ahead as planned!)
we were in the hospital 5 days then sent nurses to our house to check on me once we were home and they were shocked at how much I was moving around and how little pain I was in.
so that's promising! the one hope I have is that I will have an easy recovery from a section, my body has always healed well so I have my fingers crossed!
 
this delivery doctor asked me if forceps were used with Elliott and I think they were and/or the vacuum but I can't recall exactly, so we are going to have the files sent from Newfoundland to really see the details.

 
^ poor little guy was banged up but all good after a few days!
 
so long short of it is that she said a C-section would never be denied to a 4th degree tear mother if that's what I wanted BUT we could also look into inducing a week early to make sure I don't go overdue again and she pointed out how labour seems to get faster and easier with each delivery...
 
I said I would think about it.
and I will, because ideally it would be best if I could let things happen naturally.
 
but I have this thought gripping my brain that I KNOW my own body and I know a scheduled section would be the best route.
so I'm 85% sure I will be going with the section!
 
but never say never!
keep you posted!




Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Monat.

Ok going into this I want to be perfectly clear:
I am just a regular super annoyingly opinionated average postal working women.

I am not a scientist, a beauty expert nor a direct sales guru.

I don't want anyone to get upset or feel personally attacked..
this is a sensitive subject but I want to share my real and honest thoughts.
 
*they may be wrong! I am wrong a lot.
but I would rather tell you my thoughts honestly and you can send me any conflicting arguments and then I can write another blog and share the new things I've learned later.
that's how this blog works, I may write about the same things a lot, that's because things are always evolving!
most of the time I hate a song when its first released, 2 weeks later I love it!
I was against the benefit roller lash for like 2 years, now I use it everyday!
see open to change, Namaste.

MONAT.

monat, monat, monat.
if I had a dollar for every Monat distributer who messaged me.. I may have $100 dollars cha ching!
 
its a hair care line
its a fairly new company, 2014
its a direct sales business plan
before I let that take over I am going to tell you the tests I did and the results..
 
I had some samples
 


so for 3-4 weeks around Christmas I used the above samples solely and watched the results..
Monat distributers make LARGE claims about its natural ingredients, hair growth abilities and how it keeps your hair looking fresh for longer.

 
 
Naturally based claims: ok what I could find about its "naturally based" ingredients all sounds good, it was a lot of fruit and vegetable oils listed on the website but when I read the back of the sample packaging there were a lot more words I couldn't pronounce. (typical in the beauty world)
 
The reason for it being "naturally based" and not "all natural ingredients" is from what I can see when things are actually all natural they would most likely have to be kept in the fridge and they would still have a very short shelf life.
 
My experience: I am no expert in this arena but I am trying to be more diligent in ingredient reading!
You know how much I love my pure coconut oil for all things beauty and I clean everything with vinegar and essential oils! 
 
so I like what I see listed for Monat, I just wish there were some independent studies that weren't preformed by the Monat money machine itself so I could genuinely gauge how "natural" it is.
alas, ces't la vie.
It looks good from the outside looking in.
 
the hair growth claims:... I don't know. I mean, again, the problem with Monat is that all the "research" and information available is done through they're own website! I looked up many avenues and this being a new company there doesn't seem to be any individual studies done. It claims that some of the ingredients do this:

CAPIXYL™

Powered with Red Clover Extract, a gentle emollient that reduces scalp inflammation, strengthens and thickens hair, and hydrates the scalp to stimulate natural, noticeable hair growth.
 
 
My experience: Honestly, I felt like my hair grew, some.
this is a tough one for me to judge because there are a lot of factors at play here,
I am pregnant and taking pregnancy vitamins.
I took out my hair extensions and let my natural hair grow freely for a couple of months.
I wasn't curling my hair because it was so soft due to monat, I didn't find it held curl as well.
so that last one could've lead to a longer hair illusion^
 
I think it may help hair growth minimally.
I don't think it would cure a bald man, nor would I want it to.. imagine if you dropped some on your face! haha
If you struggle with growth maybe it would help you a lot? it definitely didn't hurt in the growth area! I will say that much.
 
less washing, better looking 2nd,3rd,4th day hair: again they just claim it, I don't really see that much behind it but there's also nothing disproving it.
 
My experience: meh, I found it was an average hair cycle for me. I would still wash my hair every 2nd-3rd day. I did find the smell of my hair lasted longer and I enjoyed that.
the shampoo and conditioner left my hair smelling great, clean, not overpowering and I could still smell the smell a day or two later.
 
ok see a couple photos below of my Monat period:
 

^ My hair looks shiny and healthy.
I wore it straight a lot because it dried well this way, I didn't do much curling because I found it weighted my curls down! my hair didn't feel heavy at all! it just didn't want to hang onto the curl.
 

^ glossy, smelled good.

I looked for some photos from before I started the Monat testing but honestly my hair looked almost the same!
For many years now I've cut out box dying and have been using salon recommended styling products so my hair has been relatively healthy.


Now my final thoughts: this is where I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings...

I would repurchase Monat. I was very happy with the results, I liked the way it made my hair feel, even the leave in conditioner! I am not a leave in type girl but this leave in was light and non greasy!

I went on the website to make a purchase..
(especially this hair growth thing?? is it an illusion? is it minimal? is it my pregnancy vitamins??)

I have tons of reps who are amazing and message me all the time to see if I need help/advice but I am such a private hermit! I hate messaging people to order and then you have to do the awkward pick up/drop off arrangement, I didn't want to be pressured into buying more products than I wanted, I would have to wait for it to be delivered...
see where I am going with this???

I just LOVE salon service!
I walk into my hair dressers, say I need my Moroccan oil hair mask and BAM I am using it that night!

when I went online I was reminded...
there is the minor price issue.
I don't mind paying for quality..
I will pay small fortunes for beauty products..

but the Monat hair mask is $65 for 148ml
my trusted Moroccan Oil hair mask is $35 for 250ml

I didn't want this to become a face off between Moroccan oil and Monat because I knew the Monat distributers would come to whoop my butt!

but I did do a bit of research on the Moroccan oil brand just to ease my mind,
it went through a bit of a tussle around 2011-2013 for not using as much Argan Oil as it seemed to portray it did, but for the most part is a typical hard to read ingredient list, then gets to water and vitamin sections. Researchers seem to agree it doesn't let harmful chemicals into your skin, it is debatable about how much it actually "heals" the hair but if it works for you, it works.

Monat may be more "naturally" friendly.. don't come for me distributers! hehehe

I was about to place a Monat order online but caught myself and said "I just can't afford this right now". It would've been maybe $130 order (that's not counting shipping, I don't know the shipping costs).. for 2 little products! for less product than what I pick up at the salon! and it wouldn't last me longer, I was using the same amount of Monat as Moroccan oil.

I remember watching the The Shopping Bags *Hi Anna and Kristina!!*
years ago and they said the real recommended shampoo size per wash, is about the size of a dime!

ever since then I've really be cautious not to waste! although, like Anna, I am all about the big lather! lol






OK. so, would I use Monat again - YES.
would I recommend you have a heavy piggy bank before spurlging - YES.
could you maybe try it if you wanted to test the hair growing abilities - YES
would I become a rep - YES and no.

I've never been a rep for anything, I don't particularly like these programs, I do think they inflate the price, they can add pressure to your friends etc to purchase and I just like walking into a dang store!
I hate being a presenter or party hostess person..
but I would like to get the discount..
on the other hand I had an info book with the rep signup information and the bundles you need to purchase to start your own "party kit" type thing were ranging from $200-$900!!



.........$900????????
I'm expecting a new baby.. I don't have $9, let alone $900 at the moment.

like literally, even if you tell me I'd make my money back in a week, I just don't have $200-900 dollars to shell up front...
that's what I don't like about these programs..

why can't I just buy you at a salon Monat??
why???

Monday, 6 February 2017

It's a GIRL... plus baby nursery..

I was going to share my thoughts on Monat (hair product) this blog post but I'm so behind on last weeks info, I wanted to catch up plus Monat isn't going anywhere..
(although sometimes I wish it would, with all the messages I get about it.. just kidding!!;))

I had two doctors appointments last week (and one coming up tomorrow), I'd better get that info out before I forget the details! If you follow my social media you would have seen...

IT'S A GIRL!!!

^ this is actually Elliott! lol
his 19 week ultrasound, I cannot believe this was 3 years ago!
 
I have no photos of baby#2, baby girl! eeeeeppp
yet, because Halifax doesn't give you any!
 
when I was at the IWK hospital for my ultrasound last week they asked if I would fill out a questionnaire about childcare.. if I thought it would be helpful for them to provide childcare during ultrasounds since no one under 12 is allowed in the ultrasound room with you.
 
I said yes, because my last ultrasound (December) we did take Elliott not knowing Nick would have to wait with him and miss the ultrasound because he wouldn't be allowed in the room.
 
but I wanted to note at the bottom of the page that I would bypass the paid childcare if they would provide a dang photo of my fetus!
 
I mean we paid the $40 to get a cd sent to us with all the photos on it, but $40 is costly and you have to wait for it in the mail!
 
there is something nice about walking out with a photo in hand! Newfoundland sent us home with 3 different photos over the period of Elliott's gestation.
 
anyway.. that's enough whining ;)
 
we went to the ultrasound last Monday January 30th, and everything was good. It lasted about an hour and at one point Nick and I both thought we saw something that was a boy part... but she was quickly scanning over everything so we weren't positive.
 
although I was convinced in my mind that it was a boy, I felt justified like I had seen something and that was that.
 
The ultrasound tech went to show the results to the doctor and when she returned she said
"Oh I didn't tell you guys when I was looking for the sex, did you want to see a photo to make your guess"
 
and we were like "YES"
this is what we've been waiting 5 months for!
 
she pulled up a photo and SHOCKER...
girl!??????!
I tried to get a hint from the tech but she didn't break, she was smiling a lot when I was saying "I really think its a girl, I think that's a girl"
 
so we left cautiously optimistic that what we saw was a little girl.
 
wait 3 more days... go to my family doctor just so he could confirm.
the nurse took us in and said "do you want to know?"
 
we said we think we know but we're just not positive but we think girl...
and she said IT'S A GIRL!!
 
I still don't believe it and I think I will be in shock until the day she is born and I see for myself!
I always thought I would have two boys, it just seemed a sure thing I don't know why.
so planning for a girl is very exciting!
 
and before we know it the baby will be here, so we decided to get a head start on some rearranging we need to do..
 
first step, moving the double bed from the guest room into elliotts room
and the single bed from elliotts into the guest/baby's room.
 
 
 
 
we purchased this day bed for Elliott's room before he was even born!
we needed some extra sleeping spaces for guests so we figured this would be Elliott's bed once he was out of the crib.. but since Elliott has the bigger of the two rooms it makes more sense for Elliott to transition to the double bed and skip the day bed all together!

 
luckily a couple of years ago when I ordered Elliott's bedspread I returned the twin size and went with the double! I just figured bigger was better since he kicks his blankets around and now I don't have to run out and purchase anything.

 
the double bed is in his room and his crib is still in there.
we aren't in a rush to transition him to the bed, the baby will be in our room in a bassinet for the first few months anyway but this way its ready to go.
(he already sleeps in a bed at the babysitters so I'm optimistic it won't be devastating to him)


I had just painted the guest room Navy back in the summer so its staying Navy!
and luckily it would've worked for boy or girl, I was going to do a little nautical theme for boy with reds and whites but since its a girl there's lots of coral/navy inspo below..
 

the guest room was starting to become a dumping ground anyway so it felt good to declutter.
& the day bed looks adorable plus makes the room look so much larger!
 
I would love to be one of those home owners whose house is all white, minimalist and everything in each room is completely matchy match coordinated... but I am not that person.
 
I don't know how people are those people???
kids gather SO much junk, people give it to you like crazy, you get it for them like crazy and unless you're throwing out/donating things on a daily basis I don't know how you keep up.
 
so I embrace the "lived in" look sooner rather than later.. because its gonna happen eventually ;)
 

I do need to pick up a couple more Christmas lights to finish off behind the bed, and I'm going to replace the pillows with a ton of white pillows & maybe a little splash of gold..
 
luckily there are a ton of Navy baby nursery's on pinterest see below...
 

^PINTEREST
I find this so funny because if Elliott had been a girl, she would have still be named Elliott!
Its really caught on as a girl name over the last few years!

^PINTEREST

^ PINTEREST
 
I'm hopeful I can find some crib bedding I really like, I'm not sold on florals but I do like it!
I would probably prefer a simpler chevron or block pattern but we will see.
 
 
 
 
Other than that the doctor said the baby is at 53% body weight on the average baby scale, which is what also hinted us towards a girl because Elliott was a monster at 99% everything!
so this baby may be daintier but there's lots of time to catch up to her brother, so no guarantee's!
 
she is due around the middle of June and she is currently breech.
I have a doctors appointment tomorrow to meet the delivery doctor so I will keep you posted on that!
 
 
after our ultrasound but before we knew 100% it was a girl, I did a little bit of shopping at Joe Fresh because their sales are amazing!

all the baby girl clothing was marked down so cheap, $1.94-6.94 and I couldn't resist picking some up! I brought the clothes with me when we went to my family doctor in case I would need to return but luckily we didn't :)