Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Big Shoes

Owen has some big shoes to fill...

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Broken Phone = Broken Heart

So, Miles and I got the first generation iPhones a few months after they first came out. We had them through all the upgraded, new and improved versions. Finally, when the iPhone 4 came out, Miles and I were ready to upgrade. They've been good to us, and we've been good to them. Even through Owen playing with (and throwing) them, they've been resilient and durable. Well...that came to an end not too long ago.

After we did Kyle's temple work and were walking back to our cars in the parking garage, Miles decided to be super cool and tricky and hop over a railing that was blocking his path. When he did that, his phone (which was in his shirt pocket) flew out and landed on the concrete. This was the result:

Of course Miles was devastated. We were also concerned because it was a work phone. (After we got our new iPhone 4's, his work decided to change their plan and upgrade their phones, offering iPhone 4's through work. Miles decided to sell his phone and get a work phone to save us money on our monthly bill). We weren't sure if we would have to pay to get it repaired. Not even a week later, I was out for my morning walk with Owen. I was contemplating stopping after two laps of the route I go on rather than three. Then I decided to buck up and finish my walk. I was running across a street to hurry past a car and quickly hopped his stroller over the curb. I finished my last lap and looked down to check the time on my phone. I was shocked to discover my phone was not there! I quickly checked my pockets, the bottom of his stroller and anywhere else I could think. I started to panic. I started to run a fourth lap (so much for going easy) to see if I could find where I had lost my phone. Sure enough, it was 1/2 way through my lap (right after running up a big hill) where I had run across the street. It was laying in the gutter. I was so happy to see it. But as I picked it up and turned it over, I discovered this:I was a sad panda. So, the good news was that I didn't lose my phone. The bad news was that I had to get it fixed. Miles and I could not believe that after all these years of never having problems with our phones and having these for over a year, we both cracked our screens within a week of each other.

We took them up to the Apple store to see what it would cost us. The guy looked up our phones to see if they were still under warranty. He said that Miles's was by just a couple weeks. And since he hadn't had any problems, he said as a one-time-only deal he would replace it for free. This was AWESOME since Miles broke his front screen. The front screen costs $200 to replace. They don't actually even replace the screen - they just replace your whole phone. So Miles walked away with a brand new iPhone 4 for free! I wasn't so lucky. My phone was the one we bought (whereas, Miles got his through work a month after we bought ours) and was out of warranty. However, the good thing was that I broke my back screen and it was only $30 to replace. We did end up spending some more money on better cases than the flimsy, free ones Apple gave out, but all in all, it was a pretty good deal.

While our broken phones caused us some heart break, luckily it was only temporary and we hope to keep them nice and safe (and in one piece) in the future!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Kerry, Hadley and Elena came to visit for a bit a few days ago and we got some pictures of the cousins together. Owen was in love with his cousins and thought they were pretty much the greatest. I think these pictures reflect that....

One thing that was really funny was that while they were here, Hadley and Elena were jumping up and down on the love sac making silly sounds and then plopping down into it. Owen was laughing so hard at them. Kerry said, "I want to make him laugh!" So she got up on the love sac and was jumping up and down and being even more exaggerated with her movements and sounds. She plopped down into the middle of the love sac, looked at him, and he went, "Heh." He totally gave her a courtesy laugh. It was hilarious. She was so disappointed. But Hadley, Elena and I were laughing our heads off. Apparently he only has eyes for his young cousins. :)

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I am so furious right now. And as I was ranting to Miles about it, he said, "You should blog about it. Get your feelings out." So I will. UGH!

When I was in CA in April, Owen woke up and was breathing really labored and raspy. I was worried that he might be getting bronchiolitis again, and I didn't have my medication with me. I thought that I should take him in, just to be safe. My sister suggesting taking him to her doctor's office where they have "emergency hours" for walk-ins. I brought him there and they said they couldn't see him for their emergency hours, as that was only for current patients. Furthermore, they didn't have any openings for new patients. So my mom tried her doctor to see if he would be willing to get Owen in. They also said no and told her to take him to the insta care. That was our only option at that point, and I really just wanted to get him seen.

So we took him in and saw a doctor there. She checked his oxygen level, listened to him breathe, and that was it. She said she thought he could have bronchiolitis...or croup. She didn't make a specific diagnosis. She wrote a script for the inhaler I had used before. And we were out of there in about 20 minutes.

A month later I got a bill in the mail for $250. It was the rate given through our insurance for using a preferred provider (rather than the nearly $400 they were billing). So I begrudgingly paid it, thinking how ridiculous it is that they charged $400 for 20 minutes of care, that honestly wasn't even that great.

This week I got another bill in the mail for $313. I was annoyed, thinking, "I've already paid this...why are they billing me again?" (Not to mention I called them last time I got a bill after I'd paid, to make sure my payment went through...which it did. So I called them just now and spoke with someone who said that she's still waiting on our insurance because the insurance told them to run the claim again. I told her I was confused as I'd already gotten a bill with a discounted rate through our insurance and paid it. She said, "Typically when you go to an insta care you get two bills. One from the facility and one from the doctor." I said, "So you're telling me this is a separate bill?" She said, "Yes."

Great. Awesome. Fantastic. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! So now I'm getting a bill charging $229 for the doctor's poor services and $84 so they could stick a clamp on his toe to check his blood oxygen levels. SERIOUSLY?! And all for only 20 minutes of time. I am fuming. I just cannot believe how much they are willing to suck you dry for medical attention. I just can't even imagine if we didn't have any form of insurance, or if we had chronic medical problems, or some serious injury, or hospitalization that we had to pay for out of pocket. It's completely asinine.

Ok. I'm done ranting. I'm not sure it really helped me. I mean, let's be honest...I've still got to pay the damn bill.

Monday, August 15, 2011


We've had such a busy weekend with family I haven't been able to write about our meeting with Dr. Heiner on Friday. Based on the conversations I had with the nurses, I wasn't really sure what to expect. But I can say I didn't expect the outcome we got.

Dr. Heiner reviewed some of our records and said that we could try "the old-fashioned way" if we wanted (AKA - no medical intervention). I was pretty shocked that he even suggested that. He talked our options over with us. He stated that we could try to do IUI if we wanted as well. He said there are three different options with IUI. Just plain insemination; insemination with pills (which help you to ovulate if that is an issue) and insemination with injections (which help to produce up to 2 or 3 eggs). Then he gave us some rough statistics on how things might work out. He said we need to keep in mind that the average, healthy couple has only a 17% chance to conceive each month. He gave us about a 7% chance on our own. With insemination it goes up to 10%, and insemination with injections increases it to 13%. And of course IVF gives you a 50% chance.

I've been planning on starting our IVF cycle this month, anticipating a possible pregnancy. So I told Miles I'm kind of antsy to get going, as I'd hopefully rather have Owen closer to 2 years apart from his sibling than 3 years apart. I feel like 1-2 months of trying on our own will likely not do much, considering it takes some couples up to a year to conceive anyway. So after talking it over together and with the doctor, we decided that we'd like to go straight to IUI (basic insemination) to increase our chances slightly. We may try 2-3 months of that and if it doesn't work, go to IUI w/ injections for 2-3 months. If after 4-6 months of trying IUI it is unsuccessful, we will go back to IVF. I'm really hopeful that this might work out for us. The good news is, that we could potentially save a lot of money. The bad news is that if it doesn't work, we'd be out that much more. But I think it's worth the gamble to see if it works.

I know this will sound absolutely ridiculous, but I told Miles there was a small part of me that was sad we aren't doing IVF. I know it's crazy, but I kind of enjoyed the whole process last time. It is so interesting how it works, and I love being involved in each step of the way. Yeah, the shots suck, but seeing how many eggs you get and how many fertilize, and getting a picture of those embryos, it's all so amazing. Not to mention I love being put under anesthesia. I'm always a total goof afterward and sleep awesome. I was also looking forward to documenting it this time since I didn't keep super detailed notes of the experience last time. Honestly, the worst part of it all is the money...and the sadness if it doesn't work. BUT I am incredibly grateful that we have this chance to try something different. It would be amazing if it works for us and if in the future we could actual conceive without any medical interventions at all. It would be a miracle. So that's where we are at. Now I just have to wait until my little ovulation predictor kit gives me the sign. Then it's back to the waiting game. Keep your fingers crossed! :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Change of plans?

Miles went in to get another Kruger (semen analysis) done a couple weeks ago. I got the results back last week. They were as follows:

Normal Miles
Volume > 2 ml 3.7 ml
Concentration 20 million per ml 31 million per ml
Total count 40 million+ 114.7 million
Progression 2.5 2
Motility > 50% 38%
Total Motil count 20 million 43.59 million
Kruger morphology 15% 13%

Although I don't remember exactly what his numbers were last time (and don't feel like looking for the records), I know that they were not concerned about the numbers involving count (volume, concentration, total count) but were more concerned about motility/movement (motility, total motil count and progression) and the morphology (Kruger). It was because both of those were lower than normal that we did IVF with ICSI (Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection) last time. When we met with the doctor in May to discuss moving ahead with a second round of IVF, he stated that we should do another Kruger to see if anything had changed enough that we wouldn't need to do ICSI. (ICSI is where they take the egg and inject the sperm inside for fertilization rather than allowing the sperm to do it on their own).

After the nurse read the results to me, I specifically thought that the Kruger didn't sound that far from normal and wondered what his previous results were. She looked it up and said, "Wow. It was 3% last time. That's a big improvement. Did he do anything special to make such a big change?" The only thing that we could think was that the last time he was tested, he had been in school and had a laptop on his lap all day everyday for over a year. Recently, he has also been holding his phone in his shirt pocket rather than his pants pocket, but I'm not sure whether or not that actually makes a difference. However, the lack of heat on his lap for the past two years certainly could have. So I asked her what that meant and whether or not we would be able to do IVF without ICSI or even consider something like IUI (intrauterine insemination), which would be so much cheaper. She said she would ask the lab and doctor about it and get back to me.

A couple days later I heard from a different nurse who left a message on my phone. She said that the lab was still suggesting ICSI, but that the doctor she reviewed it with was still debating that. And that it might be adequate for insemination attempts. So I was very confused to say the least. It seems like if the lab is suggesting ICSI, that means they are saying that not only should we do IVF, but that if we do, we still need to do the highest level of fertility treatment by doing ICSI. BUT it could be adequate for insemination? Huh?

I called back and left another message asking for clarification. I spoke with a different nurse the next week and she agreed with me that it was confusing and was also curious about where to go from here, as she had never seen that much of an improvement in someone's morphology before. So she did some research and talked with their andrology specialists and with our doctor, Dr. Heiner. She called me back a couple days later and said that the lab is suggesting ICSI because, "Once ICSI, always ICSI." She said that they feel if it was successful one time, then you shouldn't take chances on not doing it and ending up with potentially 0% fertilization. She said that they also take into account not just the Kruger, but also the motility. And Miles's progression (the direction the sperm are swimming in, not just that they are moving and possibly going in circles) was lower than normal. However, it could be possible to do IUI, but the "take home baby" rates are a lot lower (about 15% as opposed to 50-55% with IVF) and it may take multiple tries to be successful, if successful at all. SO...she basically stated that we should meet with our doctor to discuss our options and decide together what we would like to pursue.

We have an appointment set up with Dr. Heiner this afternoon. But I thought I'd go ahead and document our recent "adventures" in infertility so that I can remember all the fun roller coaster rides we get to go on throughout this process. I was pretty hopeful at one point that IUI could be our next step and we could potentially save a lot of money and not have to worry about saving so much money for each subsequent child. But at this point, I think Miles and I are resigned to the fact that IVF will likely be our best option and give us the best odds. I guess we'll see after our appointment today.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Eternal Families

After Kyle passed away, we talked as a family for a while about when we should do his temple work. Kerry was in Scotland at the one year mark of his death, and she of course wanted to be a part of doing his work. She returned in July, so we started talking about when would be a good time to do it. My mom thought it would be nice to do it on his birthday (August 18th). However, after a lot of discussion and trying to work everyone's schedules together, it ended up coming together and happening unexpectedly before then. My mom came out to Utah for a funeral at the end of July. She stayed for a while and then my dad came out to join her. Kim then worked out her new work schedule so that she could come out with Austin. And since we were all going to be together, it was a great time to do his work.

We went to the Salt Lake Temple and did an endowment session in the morning. It was a really special experience to be there with my husband, parents, siblings and brother-in-law...and of course, Kyle (in spirit). Afterward we were able to do a couple of sealings for family members. Apparently my mom's dad had never been sealed to his parents. It was wonderful that we could do that as well and know that we were continuing to bring generations together.

It was such a great experience and so special to know that we were giving Kyle the gift of being able to choose this for himself and to live with Heavenly Father forever. I know that he has/had a lot of work to do following his death. But I am so happy knowing that he has the chance to learn and grow spiritually and that we can be an eternal family. I look forward to the day when I will be able to see him again.

We love you, Kyle!
To learn more about temples and why we feel they are so important, go here.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

15 Months

I decided that after Owen turned one, I would just do updates on him about once every three months. I'm not sure that is such a good idea, because he has changed SO much in the past three months and has developed so many new skills. So this will be a long update on all of his "recent" accomplishments and behaviors as a record for myself.

Here are his stats from his 15 mo check-up:

Head: 18.5 in. (40th percentile)
Length: 31.25 in. (60th percentile)
Weight: 25 lbs. (60th percentile - up from 20 lbs and 15th percentile at a year)

Owen typically sleeps for about 10-12 hours. It seems like he goes through phases where he will sleep longer and later, and then slowly creep up his wake-up time, earlier in the morning. I was loving it when he would go to bed between 7 and 7:30PM and not wake up until 7:30 or 8AM. But all good things come to an end. He goes to bed really well right now, too. I go through our nightly routine (bath, flouride, brushing teeth, story, and song) and lay him down. Sometimes he will play in his crib for up to an hour or so and then go to sleep on his own. It's fabulous. I seriously could not love it more.
Over the past three months, his naps have been all over the place. At one point he was taking one 2 hr + nap and another 1 hour nap. Those were great days. Sometimes he would take one really long one (2-3 hours) and skip his afternoon nap. Then he went back to shorter naps (45 min - gag) and would take two during the day. Now it's kind of hit or miss. He generally takes a 1 1/2 hour nap in the morning and depending on what time he wakes up, what our day is like, and what his mood is like, he may or may not take a second nap. Sometimes he desperately needs one though, and I keep at it until he goes to sleep which sometimes means he wakes up later, pushing his bedtime later. I don't really prefer this because he seems to sleep better/longer when he goes to bed earlier.

Owen will eat pretty much anything we eat. Well...I at least let him try everything we eat. He, however, is rather picky and will either not like it at all or take 3-5 bites of it and decide he's done. Case in point...here is Owen with 5 graham crackers he took out of the package. He took 1-2 bites from each and then decided he was done.
I've been struggling with him at meals lately because he seems disinterested in baby foods, but doesn't eat very much table foods, so I worry about him getting enough to eat. I recently tried letting him feed himself. He seemed to like it ok at first and took a few bites (with my help) but now he refuses to eat food off his spoon when I turn it toward his mouth and only wants to play with the spoon and the food. This does help in distracting him though so I can feed him without him putting up a fuss. However, it often ends in messy meals with food in his hair and all over his face, arms, and hands.

I'm trying to be ok with letting him eat what he wants, when he wants. I think I have some PTSD from when he was a newborn and my milk supply was low and I was basically starving him causing his weight to be so low. Obviously, his weight isn't a concern anymore, and it seems I've been pumping him with food the past three months since he's gained five pounds. So I'm working on letting it go. It's hard, but I'm making progress.

On to all his crazy antics...

Owen gives open mouthed kisses when we ask for a kiss. It is the cutest thing ever and I love it. However, lately he's become stingy with them and will often turn his head away and refuse to give kisses. Sometimes he laughs when he does this and thinks it's a funny game to play.

He grunts when he wants more of something to eat or drink, or when you have something he wants. This has recently turned into screams/screeches when he wants something. Sigh.

On June 5th (about 13 mo) he finally started clapping. No matter how much we tried to get him to do it, he wouldn't and did it spontaneously when he was ready.

He holds the phone up to his ear/the side of his head/face. I guess he sees us talking on the phone a lot.
We had a humidifier in his room that he loved to play with and splash in the water. He would crawl toward it shaking his head "no," knowing that he shouldn't play in it and had been told "no" a number of times. He also does this when I call his name in a way that says, "Owen...you're not supposed to be doing that..." and will stop what he's doing and shake his head "no."

Whenever there is clapping on a show (like SYTYCD), he starts clapping with the audience.
For a while, during meal times, he would blow raspberries on his hand or arm. He has stopped doing that, but now he blows raspberries on my leg. It's hilarious when he goes to do it on Dada's leg because he puts his face up to his leg, gets a mouth full of hair and recoils with a disgusted look on his face. So Dada doesn't get any.

He is very expressive when he sees things he likes. He often points and says, "Ooohhh" or "oooooo!" It's darling. I love it when we are somewhere new and there is a lot to look at and it's a constant stream of oh's and oo's.When Owen was in the in between stage of walking and crawling, he would frequently "walk" around the house, upright on his knees. My Mom said that Auntie Kerry used to do that a lot too. Luckily I was able to get some video of it before he stopped doing it all together.He loves to pull things out of drawers - all of the tupperware, the pots and pans, his clothes, diapers, etc. If he can open and empty it, he will.Owen took his first steps around 13 1/2 months. Right before I left for California, he took a bunch of steps a few times in a row. I figured he'd be walking by the time we got back. But while we were there, he really showed little to no interest in walking. It wasn't until the middle of July (around 14 1/2 months) that he decided he wanted to walk. It seems like he just started one day, and took off. He hasn't gone back to crawling since. I guess now, he is officially a toddler. Kind of makes me sad. :( Although it is cute to watch him walk around with his wide-stanced gait.
He likes to pat my mouth while I make an "ah" sound so that it does the "Indian" call. He lets me pat his mouth to do the same.
He figured out how to lay flat on his tummy (often with his little bum up in the air) to look under bed, couches, etc to find and pull things out.

He can say: Thank you, uh oh, Mama, Dada.
He has learned how to climb up on low couches, tables, stools, etc and climb down backwards. He basically taught himself (which is nice...and safe). He also loves to climb up and down stairs. Sometimes he's too daring for his own good though and will want to step down off a single stair or ledge. Thankfully he hasn't tried that down a full flight of stairs.
We tried to limit his pacifier use for a while to only bedtime and naps. Then he got sick and I didn't want to take it away from him. That was a big mistake. Now he doesn't want to give it up and cries when I take it away. I forsee some pacifier weening in the future....

Owen loves drinking out of a cup and will attempt to drink out anything that resembles a cup.

At the end of a meal when we say "all done!" and do the sign for it, he claps. He has also learned how to do the signs for: all done, more, and sleep. He usually gets sad and does a whimper when we do the sign for sleep.

It seems like when he's eating, if ever his hands get dirty, he automatically sticks them on his head and gets his hair all dirty and messy.

He's very good at helping to get undressed and will try to pull his shirt off from over his head.
He is such a boy. Whenever he races cars around on the floor, or walks down the hall with his "walker" he makes growling noises. I promise we didn't teach him that. I guess it's just innate in these little guys.Often, when I go in to check on him at night before I go to bed, I walk in to find that he has thrown out all of his stuffed animals from the crib, and is usually laying down totally opposite of how I put him in the crib. He must just have a party in there before falling asleep! :) Obviously this is not one of the times he threw out his animals:

Owen's personality is coming out more and more and I LOVE it! He is a total tease and has such a sense of humor. He loves to play games with you. For example, he'll run away when you say, "I'm gonna get you!" and throw himself on the love sac or run to his room into the chair. He'll always look back to make sure you followed. He also loves to turn or run away from me when I'm trying to dress him. I'll say, "Hey! Get back here!" and he just runs off, laughing the whole way. He also thinks it's hilarious to turn away from kisses. And he loves to play peek-a-boo either by hiding himself under a blanket or hiding me. He also likes to pretend like he's going to throw something at you and not let go. He thinks it's hilarious to fake you out. Those are only some of the things he does. All day long, I am seeing his goofy little side come out. Just this morning, he woke up early (4:15 AM) and I went it to hug and rock him and lay him back down. While I was holding him, I had to sneeze. I tried to hold it in, but my body still shook with each sneeze. On the third sneeze, he started giggling. He's such a goon. I love him to pieces!