Sunday, September 17, 2017

Birth Story | The Farnes Family

I suppose the story begins last Friday morning. I went in for a non-stress test appointment where they also discussed my mild preeclampsia. Shortly after that appointment, I got a phone call telling me I was officially on bedrest and basically had to lay around all day. I was also given a list of symptoms of my preeclampsia that if I experienced then I would have to go to labor and delivery.

Now, this was a real shock. Up until a few weeks prior, I had done really well with my pregnancy, I got around fairly easily, and while I was swollen like a balloon, I felt fine. I chose to start my maternity leave early on September 1st, simply so I could rest and try to keep my twins in until I would be induced on the 21st. I wanted to rest but didn't think my doctor would tell me to or that they might come earlier. I was certain they would wait until their induction date.

So I spent that day on my couch with Zoram and mentally prepared myself to deliver. Being told to go to the hospital for certain symptoms scared me. My hospital is 20 minutes from my apartment and can be annoying to get to. Not to mention that with both my baby girls breeched, I needed a cesarean and didn't want a random doctor giving me major surgery if I had to just rush in. I also didn't have my hospital bag ready and I still had things to purchase, like a second car seat.

I spent my day on the couch and slowly began feeling more and more contractions. When Chris got home from work we debated and discussed our options. We said a prayer and eventually decided to go to the hospital. I sat on my bed as Chris packed a bag for me and we left.

We spent a few hours at the hospital while they monitored my worsening contractions and my girl's heartbeats. They eventually decided that I would not be delivering that night, though I did have a UTI and was dehydrated. I was given an IV for fluids and two injections to relax my uterus and slow contractions. Finally, at 3am we went home and went straight to bed.

I spent my entire Saturday in bed, no longer feeling contractions and feeling more comfortable. Chris and I began to believe our girls would come later in the week so long as I kept on bedrest. I made plans to fix up my hospital bag and spent the day in peace.

Sunday morning I woke up feeling incredibly uncomfortable and sick. I ended up throwing up before I could even get any food in my stomach and couldn't even think about eating anything after. I showered and then laid in my bed watching YouTube.

Suddenly, I felt a gush of fluid that would not stop. I remained lying still on my bed as I continued to feel like I was peeing non-stop without any control. When it felt as if it had stopped, I rushed to my bathroom, sat on the toilet, and again began gushing more fluid.

Because I had twins, was 35 weeks along, had a scheduled c-section, and was no longer feeling any contractions, I never expected my water to break in this pregnancy. At all. Honestly, I was so surprised by it, that as I sat on the toilet I was on my phone Googling to be 100% sure that this was real. Eventually, I shouted out to Chris on the couch and told him what was happening.

Chris went into a very calm, controlled, rushed mode to grab everything we needed, get me ready with fluid still leaking from me, and get us out to the car and to the hospital. He held my hand the whole ride, didn't seem scared or nervous at all, and he was acting so excited. I, on the other hand, was still incredibly nauseated, my back was aching and cramping like crazy, and I felt incredibly weak and just tired.

In the hospital, they got me in a bed and there was no doubt that I was having my babies soon. They went into all the prep, my parents showed up, excited to get their first grandkids on grandparents day, my sister and her new hubby showed up, and all the while I laid in the hospital bed, just wanting to sleep and feeling more and more painful cramps.

Honestly, it was only a few hours later until I was wheeled into the operating room. The on-call doctor was one who was previously recommended to me when I had to originally switch doctors for my insurance. I got to meet her and was comfortable with her performing my c-section.

I was given the typical anesthesia, which I hated due to my major fear and distaste for needles. They laid me down as I started to grow numb, my arms were strapped down (still don't know why), a curtain was set up to block my view of what was happening, and Chris sat beside me, holding my hand and doing his best to comfort me.

I felt tugging and pulling in my abdomen, but was numb enough to feel no pain. It was a strange feeling though. It felt like no time at all before our first little girl entered the world, followed only a minute later by her sister. My Zoey and Makell were born.

Chris left with the girls while I was sewn up. Fun fact, apparently when they are tugging at your uterus, your shoulder hurts. It was some of the most intense pain of my life and I really struggled to remain calm. Weird that in getting a c-section my worst pain would be in my right shoulder.

I was wheeled back into a room where my family was waiting. I honestly don't remember what else happened that day because I was in and out of sleep.

I didn't get to see my girls that day. And that night I was throwing up and hyperventilating. I was dealing with too much of my own issues to go see my girls. Chris was with them often though, taking our family members into the NICU to visit them.

The next day I had nurses in and out of my room looking over me and eventually, I was feeling well enough that Chris put me in a wheelchair and took me to the NICU to visit our girls.

Today my girls are one week old and still in the NICU. I have since left the hospital and absolutely hate being away from them, but am so grateful for the nurses at the NICU and everything they are doing for my girls.

My daughters are doing considerably well. Makell is on oxygen as she tends to struggle with breathing, especially after eating. For a while, Zoey was under ultralight therapy for jaundice. But she has gotten better and is now off the lights. Both girls are being fed through a tube. We often try to give them a bottle, but they don't take much on their own. They are preemies and haven't fully developed their rooting and sucking skills, but we're easing them into it.

They both have an issue with throwing up their food though, particularly Makell. Because I'm not really producing much breast milk, they are having formula. The regular formula seemed to upset, they moved over to soy, and now Makell is on another formula. They are worried they have a lactose issue so they are no longer even giving them the little milk I produce unless I go completely dairy free (which is something Chris and I are considering and discussing).

Zoey and Makell will be released from the NICU once they can learn to eat and show signs of consistent weight gain. We're predicting about a week, but you never know. I do have little warrior babies and we believe they can get home soon, but it's very hard to wait.

I visit my girls every day, though not nearly as much as when I was in the hospital or as much as I would like. I love my daughters so much. They are absolutely perfect, they make me cry all the time because of how precious, petite, and perfect they are. I just want to hold them all the time and it kills me that I can't.

I am grateful for the NICU for easing me into parenthood and teaching me how best to care for them. The nurses there are so kind and amazing. They love our girls and take such good care of them.

It's amazing to see Chris as a father. He's still getting used to it, still may have a bit more of a connection to our dog right now, but he honestly loves these girls so much and takes care of them (and me) the best he can. Honestly, as I lay in my hospital bed, unable to visit them, I knew I could count on Chris to be visiting them often and checking up on them.

Happy one week to my beautiful girls!




Makell and her mommy

Makell and mom and dad

Zoey under the light therapy

How Zoey really feels about light therapy

Yawning Makell

Zoey and her cute hat 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

32 Weeks Pregnant | Little Life Stories

I've had your fairly standard pregnancy thus far. You know, get pregnant while living with your parents (awkward), move into a beautiful (albeit at the top of your price range) apartment, are fantastically sick, learn the reason you're so sick is because you're actually pregnant with twins, realize the beautiful third floor apartment you now live in is impractical for both pregnancy and having two babies (so... many... stairs...), your car breaks and you have to purchase a new one (which is a great car, but now you have more monthly bills), impress everyone with the way your morning sickness vanished and you're suddenly doing just fine, surprise everyone with how well babies are doing and how your belly isn't as big as the moon (though your feet begin to swell to the size of the moon), and are still able to participate in summer family vacations and get around just fine.

You know, standard pregnancy.

Until 31 weeks hits you like a ton of bricks and you're suddenly faced with your belly aching because your girls don't have enough room, feeling like your ribs are broken, waking up twice a night to pee and struggling to get out of the bed, barely being able to breathe, feet bigger than King Kong's and hurt with each step, back pain, pelvic pain, stressing over all the things you have to do and/or buy before babies arrive, doctors appointments twice a week taking up your time, and just living with general discomfort and pain.

You know, standard pregnancy.

Today I am 32 weeks pregnant, went to my doctors for one of my twice a week non-stress tests, and told my doctor that I was done. With work. See, I've been working full-time up until this point and while I enjoy my job, and am good at my job, being in the office 40 hours a week is beyond exhausting. I'm up and down out of my seat all day, don't have time to put my giant feet up, and when I get home am too tired to tackle the long list of things I need to do (partially just from all the stairs I have to climb to get home after work).

I can't clean my home after 8 hours of work, which leaves cleaning for the weekend, but my weekends are often too busy with baby or bridal showers, vacations, and other tasks that need to be done. I haven't had a full weekend at home in probably a month, and my apartment shows it.

Chris does so much to help out and typically he's the one doing the cleaning. But that's not always fair. Yes, I'm pregnant, but I'm ridiculously stubborn and hate having people do things for me. I hate admitting I may need help and having Chris do all the work around the house makes me feel like a bad wife and a lazy human being.

And let's not even get into what'll happen after babies come and I will be leaving my job, leaving Chris to be the sole money maker in the home (unless this blog finally starts making me money at some point). I've always been someone who wants to work. Being a mom is a job, but transitioning out of full-time employment in an office to full-time mom duties will definitely be a change for me. But in having twins, it would not be possible for me to continue my job. Trust me, I've looked at it from every angle, this is the best solution for me and my girls.

Anyways, today I got my doctor to write a note saying I can only work 20 hours a week up until my official maternity leave, which is only five weeks away. My boss was super accommodating, he understands my situation and wants what is best for me and my babies (which, reading through pregnancy forums, is actually a rare thing, I'm pretty lucky I work where I do).

Switching to part-time is a huge weight off my shoulders, despite the financial strain this causes. But I believe that things will work out. I've been looking for part-time online positions I can do from home for some extra cash and have been researching on how I can make money through this blog (because over 5 years and not a single cent is pretty sad). But also, from experience, I can say that I blog a lot more when I'm not working. Like today. I'm actually posting something because I didn't have to work. Therefore, working part-time and when babies come, I'm sure I'll have a lot more blog posts for you guys.

This post was mostly me complaining/venting, which John Tesh told me I shouldn't be doing. But I hope you'll forgive me this one time and I'll work on less complaining on this blog in the future.

In summary, being pregnant isn't my favorite and hasn't been easy on me. I'm beyond thrilled for my girls to arrive and to be a mom. They have stayed very healthy through this whole pregnancy and I couldn't be happier about that, but me, personally, I'm falling apart at this point. But I have five weeks left until I'm being induced and I want them to stay in until them to give them the best chance at a healthy delivery and life.

Well, if you've made it to the end of this post, congratulations! Here's your reward: a couple of photos from an impromptu, unofficial maternity shoot from one of my favorite photographers, and my friend, Mariah.

BTW, that dress is too short now because of how big my belly has gotten and these were taken a month ago. I'm growing like crazy! Good for babies, not so good for me personally.

Also, please check out more of Mariah's photos on her Instagram page by CLICKING HERE. She did my sister's engagement photos and they were so gorgeous and she's a Farnes family friend so she's done a lot for us. If you live in Utah, particularly Davis County, check her out. She's amazing.

Lastly, up until recently, this dress has been my go-to for a comfy, cute outfit. Here are some similar dresses, all $50 or less, that I would have also loved.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

My Foundation Routine | Fashion & Beauty

Hello friends! By now you should all be well aware of my obsession with Ipsy. It's how I afford makeup. I'm poor but I can pay $10 a month for samples of makeup and beauty products. I'm also a hoarder of makeup, so it lasts me a while as I try to get through it all.

But while about 85% of my makeup routine is probably Ipsy products, my current foundation routine is not... with the exception of my makeup brushes, but that's totally irrelevant.

Today I am sharing with you my three, yes three, foundation products that I am currently obsessed with. These products in combination give my face natural coverage and I'm in love when the way they work so well together.

Now if you're a long time follower of my blog, you may be aware that I also have an obsession with Maybelline. Because of my lack of money, Maybelline is my go-to affordable makeup line, not just for the price but for the quality. I honestly believe it is the best product quality for the price of any drugstore makeup line. 

I am, however, new to this particular foundation. While the next product has been a staple for me for years, I decided to try this product after running out of a particularly wonderful Ipsy foundation. But I am loving it. 

This foundation does a fantastic job at covering my pores and imperfections, giving my skin a smooth finish. It's very lightweight and doesn't weigh heavily on my skin, nor does it look heavy. Best part, a little goes a long way so it'll last a long time, making it worth the cost, not that it costs that much to begin with. 

I highly recommend using a foundation brush to apply it though. If you use your fingers, you tend to get uneven coverage and, in my experience, end up using more to get the coverage where you really need/want it. I'm currently obsessed with my Luxie Dreamcatcher Precision Foundation Brush 660 that I got from Ipsy and love the softness of the brush and how easy it is to blend with. 

I've talked about this one many times before and even have a review you can READ HERE (though it's not the best review and I may write up another since I've been very into reviews lately). This product is literally my favorite beauty product of all time. I cannot live without this and some type of mascara. 

I currently have the highlighter version, which is weird for me, since I used to often use this as an all-over foundation in a pinch, and I can't really do that with this shade. But regardless, it works well to cover the dark circles under my eyes that are always present. 

My favorite thing about this product is that it lasts all day and blends ridiculously well. I never have to worry about my dark circles popping up again later in the day. I'm ridiculously in love with this product, you don't even understand. 

I use this after the liquid foundation so I just dab it on under my eyes and blend it out a bit with my fingers. I will sometimes use the same brush from my foundation to blend the colors of the two a bit better, but typically just dabbing it on does the trick. 

If you're looking for a good powder foundation, this is the only one you need. Bare Minerals is a more expensive brand and it is the most expensive beauty product that I consistently purchase. But it's something that I feel I always have to have around. 

This powder has fantastic coverage, hides pores and imperfections, is super lightweight, blends with your skin tone well*, and often doesn't even look like you're wearing makeup at all. In fact, I've worn only this powder without the foundations underneath and it gives me the imperfect look I crave with little work. 

(*If you really want to be sure it'll work well with your skin tone I recommend going to their store and having them find your correct shade. I did that a few years ago and it has made all the difference, and the guy was bored and gave me a whole makeover, bonus!)

Because I use the liquid foundations, I use this powder to help keep the liquid foundations in place as well as giving a final blend to my look. I use the C427 Duo Fiber Crown Brush from an Ipsy bag to dab and blend on my powder in the areas I know tend to fade (this is technically a blush brush, but it has worked well for me thus far). I have fairly oily skin so I use the matte version of this powder to keep my skin looking natural. Honestly, this powder gives me a more natural look, which I love. 

If you would like a video on my full makeup routine, leave a comment below and let me know. For now, you can check out my previous makeup routine video HERE


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Looking To The Future | Real Talk

My family has this awesome game thing called "Table Topics" that I now have in my own home as well. It's a bunch of cards with questions that ignite discussion. It's a great way to get to know people or even learn about the people you've lived with for years. And sometimes, it's a way to get to know more about yourself.

On Independence Day after games and food, my brother pulled out the "Table Topics" and began asking the whole family some questions. During the game, the following question came up:

"Do you live more in the past, present, or future?" 

Everyone gave their answers and I had to think only briefly on my own. The future. I am constantly just waiting for future things to happen. I make big goals and plans for myself and dream about them coming true, so much that I forget to focus on what's going on now. 

I don't think that living in the future is always a bad thing. There's nothing wrong with me wanting to have my twins with me now instead of waiting another two months. (Yes, only two-ish months until my girls will be born, that's insane.) And it's incredibly realistic for me to make plans to lose weight after my twins come because I physically can't do it now. However, it's more the aspect of my career choices where living in the future puts me at a disadvantage. 

You, my blog readers, should know more than anyone that I'm constantly making goals for the future of this blog. I plan and dream about what it could become, but whenever it comes to actually hitting publish on a blog post, it's not good enough for me. I want it to be the blog that I see in my dreams, the future blog that's in my head. 

The same is true with my ultimate goal of being a writer. I keep pushing off sharing anything because I'm terrified. I want my book to be that magical book that everyone wants to read, and even though I have been working on the same book since I was 18 years old, I keep editing, revising, changing, and telling myself it's not good enough because it's not the book I see in the future that brings me fame and fortune. (Ha ha)

In my actual career choices, I keep settling for jobs that I don't love, telling myself that eventually, in the future, I'll be able to have a job that I love. I get jobs for the money or for the convince instead of actually pursuing something that I want. 

Let's be clear, there is nothing wrong with dreaming about the future and wanting more for our lives. But I believe that I have an issue on my hands. 

Where my blog and my writing is concerned, I will never reach my future goals unless I start acting now. I can dream all I want about "Heroes & Villains" becoming a big hit, but unless I sit down in the present and write, it's never going to be what I see in my mind. 

I let my current job, money, and laziness get in the way of doing something to progress into who I want to be. Yes, there are many instances where if I had more money, I could do the things I want with my blog, but there are ways around my money problems. And if I ever want my blog to start making money for me, I have to actually post things! 

I'm so used to saying "SOMEDAY..." but why don't I ever do something today? I need to focus on today. I need to just sit down and write. I need to apply for the jobs that I want. I need to get out and do things instead of putting them off for the future. 

I can't promise that I'm suddenly going to do this and have blog posts all the time, but I know I'm going to try harder. I'm ready to start letting my blog be what it is now instead of thinking only of what it could be. I deserve it, you deserve it, and this blog deserves it. 

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