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Tuesday, June 26, 2012


I suppose I should "introduce" Willow, even though she is almost 9 months old. GEEZE! Willow Anne French was born on October 2nd, 2011 at 6:30 am. I'm pretty sure she was 7lbs, 13oz, and I am clueless as to how long she was. What, you say, look at her birth certificate? Well I would, but I lost it. Pretty much sums up the way Willow came into the world.

Ian was deployed for the majority of my pregnancy; it was just me and the pipskerdoo (and fetus Willow). We made the most of our summer together. Since we lived in Vegas and it was summer AND I was pregnant, we spent a lot of time at the pool. We also ate way too many ice cream drumstick thingies...like every day. We patiently waited for Daddy to return as by belly grew bigger and bigger. We knew his return date was cutting it close, but there was nothing we could do. I decided to stop working two weeks before I was due, just to relax and spend some quality time with Piper. Also, my doctor had checked me at 38 weeks and basically said she didn't think I was going to make it to my October 8th due date; Ian was set to return on the 2nd. Needless to say, I got super-pregnant over emotional and made a huge fuss about it. What do these doctors know anyways?

Who says that, "Yes, let me shatter your dreams of your deployed husband possibly making it home for your child's birth."

After that appointment I took it really easy, I mean laying on the couch the majority of the day. Since my relaxing took a hold of me, I had to rush around the day before Ian was supposed to come home and clean the house from top to bottom. I was scrubbing and sweeping and mopping, ect, ect...by the time I was finished I was flippin' exhausted. I took Piper to the park that night to give both of us a distraction; we were both anxious for Ian to come home. We knew he was in the States that night and just had to get on a plane the next morning. We had our "Welcome Home Daddy," sign all ready to go.

Then, 1am rolled around. I was used to waking up several times a night to go the bathroom or to roll over, but this time was different. I felt the initial cramping/small contractions and figured they would go away. After about an hour of laying in bed, trying desperately to ignore them and fall back asleep, I called Ian. Luckily he was on east coast time and was awake getting ready to leave for the airport. I let him know that I was having contractions and the worse case scenario would mean his friend would have to pick him up when he arrived in Vegas, instead of us. That was a huge bummer to me. I wanted that iconic "get off the plane, huge hug, tears, joy," scene. I texted his friend to let him know we needed him on-call to pick Ian up, luckily his wife was home and awake and was ready to come pick me up if I needed to go to the hospital. At this point, I knew it was going down. I took a shower, ate some food, and tried to convince myself the contractions were not getting worse. I sat down and turned 'Father of the Bride' on, but I couldn't concentrate. My contractions were about 5-7 minutes a part and getting intense. I finally gave in to my denial and called our friends to come pick me up. We got Piper out of bed and took her to her daycare lady. By this time it was 4:30am.

I remember being super calm on the way to the hospital. I nonchalantly texted family I was going to the hospital, not even thinking of saying where or with who, or any other detail most people would want to know. We pulled into the parking lot and parked close to labor and delivery, only to find that the doors were locked. For some asinine reason, I decided to walk around the entire hospital to enter through the ER doors. Our friends thought I was crazy, but no one questions a lady in labor. Especially one who is shouting extremely foul language every 3-5 minutes. Things got pretty crazy once we got into the hospital room. I was already dilated to an eight and my contractions were intense. Through all the chaos, I called Ian to tell him what was happening, but he was on a plane to Denver. After that, I didn't care about anything but getting that baby out! She was on the same wavelength. I asked to get up to go to the bathroom and as soon as I sat back down on the bed, my water broke and Willow pushed herself out. Oh, hello there child!

I was so exhausted and honestly, confused. How did this happen so fast and without Ian! I was so fortunate our friends were able to take me to the hospital and relay what was going on to Ian's mom (sorry Hannah and Janet who were desperately trying to figure our what was happening!). I'll never forget the conversation Ian and I had when he made it to DIA and was able to call me. With Willow crying in the background, he asked, "Why are you at home with Piper, I thought you were going to the hospital." I had to tell him it was the baby three times before he could wrap his head around it. He finally made it to the hospital around 1pm. I'll also never forget him walking around the corner into the room. I immediately broke down and cried. It was all so overwhelming -- a perfectly healthy, beautiful little girl and my husband back after five months.

So this really wasn't about Willow at all, but a good story to remember and tell her when she is older. It's already too long to go on about Willow, because I could do that for days. She had been an absolute blessing to our family.

the best we could do after about 27 tries...one or both of Ian's eyes were closed in 26. Piper was over it.

Daddy and his new baby

Mommy and Willow

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


WOW. Seriously, time does fly. I haven't posted in over a year. ONE YEAR. 365 days. Ridiculous. The ironic thing is this may have been the busiest year of our lives, thus far. I am disappointed in myself for not documenting more of this past year; not only on our blog, but in every way. The question is not "what happened this past year," but more "what didn't happen." We have been through some crazy times, and now that it is all finally settling down, we are realizing the implications of being so distracted. We are now re-adjusting to just living life and enjoying every minute we have together. We are discovering things we didn't know about ourselves and actively working on the things we want to change.

So in a nutshell...

  • Ian deployed to Iraq for 5 months.
  • Willow Anne French was born October 2nd at 6:30am, just a measly 5 hours before Ian got back. He was at DIA on a lay-over and he didn't believe me when I told him I had already had the baby.
  • We decided to not re-enlist in the Air Force. This was a very difficult and trying decision, as there are many pros/cons being in the military.
  • Ian was hired by a new civilian company, as well as the Air Force reserves in Alamogordo, New Mexico (who actually lives in New Mexico, right). The separation from the military and moving to a new city/state happened in the blink of an eye!
  • We bought our first home, in the freaking sticks. And a puppy. 
I would love to say life is perfect -- as it may look on paper -- but we have been through some of the top stress-inducing situations and I'd be lying if I said we haven't been effected. It has been a challenge to just sit back and let life happen. We have been in the new house/new town for about 3 months and we are slowly adjusting to life here in Alamogordo. It is a HUGE change from Las Vegas. I'm talking 2 million people, to 35,000 people. A 24/7 lifestyle to 9-5 lifestyle. A Starbucks on every corner to no Starbucks at all. Amazing friends who made the time in Vegas feel a little like home. And last but not least no Target or Chipotle. GASP. So I sound superficial as all hell, but we all get used to comforts such as these. Not all is lost though. We have a Walmart and a Rue 21 (Gag me with a spoon). 

But more seriously, this last move has brought things up that had been dwelling inside. Insecurities about ourselves that we didn't want to admit, communication issues and fears of starting over. Sometimes it takes a shit-load of crap to remind you what you actually have. I have always struggled with negativity, seeing the muck before the sunshine. I'm putting that in the past and actively focusing on the beautiful life we have made for ourselves. I am focusing on loving my family with all of my heart and starting every single morning fresh.