Monday, December 23, 2013

Worth the wait

For some having babies is like snapping their fingers and bazinga they 're blessed with a bouncing bundle of joy. For others it takes years of tears, treatments, heartbreak and a roller coaster of emotions… and lot of crazy hormones. We fit the second group- due to a condition I have that makes it very hard to get pregnant ...but hey it makes for a very interesting story!

After a year of trying, last Fall we had an answer to our prayers…but it wan't meant to be and we ended up losing the baby around 11 weeks (two days before Thanksgiving). Needless to say it was the hardest thing we have experienced in our lives and Thanksgiving was not very fun. 

But as He does, God brought Joel and I closer than ever through the whole thing and helped us heal together. After a few more rounds of infertility meds, shots, hundreds of dollars and too many doctors appointments in the New Year I decided enough was enough; God can do anything…I don't need these stinkin' drugs! My Aunt Fran (who is my self appointed Godmother due to her southern tell it like it is faith-filled advice) was telling me for months she felt like I should go to a chiropractor because it had helped her coworker get pregnant after nothing worked… (Sounds nutty right?)

Long story short- God not only led me to amazing Christian chiropractors at Family First Chiropractic but paved the way for free treatments! After a few days of stressing of how I would pay for the care- I prayed for an answer and felt like I should ask them about a trade. They'd treat me and I'd help them with their marketing. Little did I know they were in major need of help. They said they felt like God had led me to them to help and they would be happy to do an even trade! They told me to expect a miracle because they did! The first appointment I had the song 'Healing Begins' came on when I was being treated. Woah!

Fast forward five months of chiropractic care, continual prayer with expectation and words of encouragement from God along the way. Ask me about all of the barren women of the Bible who eventually conceived- because He revealed all of their stories to me in those months! It really was getting ridiculous to read them one after another as my daily devotionals in a women in the Bible series.

And come September...I was pregnant! Exactly one year after I was pregnant before! God has pretty amazing timing and allowed us to experience some pretty amazing things in the past year. So we continued praying furiously and patiently waited for that 12 week appointment to hear the heartbeat we didn’t hear the first time before we told anyone. Ironically- it was the day before Thanksgiving- exactly one year after we found out we lost our first baby. You couldn't imagine the ants in our pants and anxiety we felt. Talk about déjà doctor even mentioned the timing! But this time was different. This time we heard a strong beautiful heartbeat! The most amazing sound we've ever heard! Woosh, woosh, woosh, woosh. Strong and healthy.

June 3rd can't get here soon enough for us to meet this little miracle baby! As a journalism grad I've always appreciated a good story and I really can't wait to tell this baby how their life is already pretty darn amazing…even before they were born.

Thank you to all of you who have been praying for us the last few years. God is so good and faithful. We are so blessed to have this testimony to share. We also realize some aren't as blessed as we are to be able to have children and my heartbreaks and yearns along with them. I pray that our story helps and encourages those with similar struggles along the way. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Food Blog 10: Super Easy 7 Can Chicken Tortilla Soup

This one goes out to Miss Ashley J. Webb who is a real peach. :) 

1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
2 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth
1 (10 ounce) can chunk chicken
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed
1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chile peppers, drained
1 (4 ounce) can of diced green chilis
A few wedges worth of lime juice (or 2 Real Lime packets-love them!)
Sea Salt and Pepper to taste

Grated Cheese
Sour Cream

Fresh Tortilla strips: 
Brush flour tortillas with veggie oil, cut into strips, put onto cookie sheet and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake in oven for 10-15 minutes at 350.

(Original recipe makes 6 servings)

Open the cans of corn, chicken broth, chunk chicken, black beans, and diced tomatoes with green chilies. Pour everything into a large saucepan or stock pot. Simmer over medium heat until chicken is heated through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with fresh avocado, sour cream, grated cheese and your yummy tortilla strips and enjoy! 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Food Blog 9: Shrimp Lemon Pepper Pappardelle with Belgium Brussel Sprouts

1 (8 ounce) package pasta (I like to use Trader Joes Pappardelle) 

1 tablespoon olive oil

6 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup chicken broth

1/4 cup white wine
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
salt to taste
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 pound shrimp, peeled (I LOVE Trader Joes Argentina Red Shrimp!!) 
1/4 cup butter
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

(Original recipe makes 4 servings)

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 9 to 13 minutes or until al dente; drain.

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, and saute garlic about 1 minute. Mix in chicken broth, wine, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, and pepper. Reduce heat, and simmer until liquid is reduced by about 1/2.

Mix shrimp, butter, parsley, and basil into the saucepan. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, until shrimp is opaque. Stir in the cooked linguine, and continue cooking 2 minutes, until well coated.

...And for the Brussel Sprouts!

 1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed and yellow leaves removed (I like Trader Joes frozen Belgium brussels sprouts)
 3 tablespoons olive oil
 1 teaspoon kosher salt
 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

(Original recipe makes 6 servings)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C).

Place trimmed Brussels sprouts, olive oil, kosher salt, and pepper in a large resealable plastic bag or sealable bowl. Seal tightly, and shake to coat. Pour onto a baking sheet, and place on center oven rack.

Roast in the preheated oven for 30 to 45 minutes, shaking pan every 5 to 7 minutes for even browning. Reduce heat when necessary to prevent burning. Brussels sprouts should be darkest brown, almost black, when done. Adjust seasoning with kosher salt, if necessary. 

Serve immediately...I recommend with parmesan cheese! Want to kick it up a notch? Add some bacon or pancetta! It is oh so delish baked in the oven with the sprouts!

Bon appetit!!