spotlight on activealli
Sorry Im so late posting on this. My laptop went down last week and of couse all heck broke list with my home based business (and life in general) so finally catching up on evertything now.
Ill do my best to catch up on all the questions. I had started a lengthy response to everyones questions, then of course, my hand hit the laptop touch pad and backed out of the page and lost all my work! So, Ill be responding in short multiple responses now :)
A little about me (sorry if this isnt the best writing, but Im flipping back and forth between work projects trying to catch up from last week). I have been married to my husband for almost 6 years now. I work from home and own my own company called Pretty Pony Inc. I do internet marketing for about 800 affiliate marketing websites, in addition to my line of equestrian products at www.PrettyPonyInc.com. I also help my husband with his million and one business ventures (www.ComfortGrips.com, www.MerchantAccount.org, www.TheFillPill.com, to list a few of many). We have an 8.5 month old son who was born 8/24/11 of last year after a very high risk pregnancy. He was born with a 3rd copy of the 21st chromosome, which I think makes him extra special, but most people know this as down syndrome. He had a very rough start to life and we were unsure if he would even make it to his first birthday. He was born with a blockage in his intestines between his stomach and large intestine, requiring surgery 5 days after he was born to restore a working digestive system. He was on intravenous feeding lines for the first 2 weeks of his life before he could start taking breast milk. He spent 19 days in the NICU, which felt like forever, but much shorter than the 1-3 months we were originally told before Aiden was born. Shortly after he was released from the NICU he developed a type of jaundice that is not typical baby jaundice, but indicated a more severe problem. He was also diagnosed with a rare form of transient (comes and goes) leukemia, and an underactive thyroid. We were very worried about the leukemia as for a while, it looked like he may either die, or have to undergo chemotherapy treatment. After three tear filled months, he finally turned a corner and everything started to get better instead of worse. Unfortunately, due to all this stress, I did not go to any post natal appts and did not start any form of BC. I was planning on using the rhythm method once my cycle returned... it never did. We found out late January that we were expecting again... with the same EDD as my son (we are not religious, but do believe things happen for a reason. I guess we are just meant to have babies on 9/5).
So, here we are! We are happily expecting (though it took some warming up to) a little girl, whom we are going to name Annabelle (we all have A names and nicknamed the "A Team" in the NICU). Because I had a c-section the first time in Portland, a very VBAC friendly area, and now living in southern CA (vbac ban at every hospital within at least 100 miles), I am going to attempt a home vbac with Dr. Stuart Fishbein (featured on the 'More Business of Being Born') and a team of midwives. I am scared, but I would have been scared either way. Almost everyone I know has either had their baby end up in the NICU due to a c-section (fluid stuck in lungs...or worse) or had severe complications from surgery (infection, healing problems) and even had a friend who the spinal only took on half her body and felt everything on one half of her body. I was originally planning a home birth with my son before I found out I was very high risk.
I tried to blog about my pregnancy but only got so far. You can read the whole story about how we found out he had down syndrome, etc on my blog here:
We recently moved back from Portland, OR to Santa Barbara, CA in December to be closer to both of our families here. My inlaws are 10 minutes away. My parents are 30 minutes away. Due to the high cost of living in this area, none of my friends from high school still live in the area and I dont have any friends here. We each have 1 younger single childless sister. I feel pretty alone. Especially with everything we have gone through, outside of the down syndrome parent support group, its hard to find other parents I can relate to. I did start doing a baby bootcamp 3 morning a week and everyone has been amazing. I think at first it was an awkward subject for them but over the weeks we have become close and they understand now he is not really different than any other kid and feel comfortable asking any questions they have. I like to maintain an open and informative discussion about my sons medical and disability diagnosis, even though to the typical passerby, he is really just like any other little boy! I love him so much!
I do have 1 friend from high school that I was close to. She had her daughter about 1 year before we had Aiden. I love her but she has not been through all I have been through and is VERY pushy with her beliefs. She is idealistic without being realistic. She STRONGLY believes in only breastfeeding and cloth diapering, being a stay at home mom etc. She is always digging a little bit at my parents practices. I pumped for 6 months because of my sons medical problems, weight gain problems, feeding problems, reflux. I was able to breastfeed a bit at 3-4 months, but it took over an hour and he was never quite full. He would wake up hungry again an hour later. Once I got pregnant I lost my supply and ability to pump. I would bleed every time and never got more an 2 ounces a day, despite pumping every 3 hours, supplements, oatmeal, etc. I still feel like she looks down on me because I give my son formula. I wish there was an option for me. I tried soo hard to give my son the best, but I couldnt let him start for my ideals. I use g-diapers with disposable inserts. I did this on my own accord, my own research and she posts on my facebook page about how she successfully "converted" me to CD, when I had already picked g-diapers before she even sent me her propaganda email (she sends every new mother she knows an email about breastfeeding, cloth diapering, and natural parenting). She was lucky enough to have 2 easy pregnancies, two perfectly healthy vaginal births (she claims natural but I know she had an epidural), and 2 healthy babies. She has no idea what it was like to go through what I went through, trying the best I could just to keep my son alive. Ok, rant done!
Just about anything and everything! I love hiking, road cycling, horseback riding (I have 2 horses) ,swimming, going for long walks. I love being outdoors. I was a swimmer and water polo player through high school. I am a hard person to keep sitting. 2 months of bedrest was near torture with my last pregnancy. Currently, I take my son and new rescue doggie for an hour walk with the bob stroller every morning for 1 hour in our hilly neighborhood that has a trail section in it that is bob-able (able to take the all terain stroller onto it). We do this every single morning, unless its raining. My son sleeps best when he is moving. 730/8 am both the dog and baby get cranky to get out! On top of the every morning walk, I go to a stroller bootcamp 3 mornings a week, going straight from our walk (nap time) to the hour long stroller bootcamp. I ride/train my 2 horses 2-3 times a week in the afternoon after I get some work done. We try to take a family walk with my husband, baby and dog in the evening before dinner time at least 3-4 days a week M-F. We always go for a walk/hike (Aiden goes in teh kelty backpack) on Saturdays! We are happy to live in the area we live in, as there are tons of hikes, trails, off leash dog hike/walking paths and places to go and be outdoors on the weekends and hte weather is usually good. I still miss all my friends in Oregon!
I do internet marketing from home. I own my own corporation called Pretty Pony Inc. I have a website that sells equestrian gift items at www.PrettyPonyInc.com. I also do affiliate marking, search engine marketing and own about 800+ other domain names. I also help my husband with some of his business ventures, including http://www.ComfortGrips.com, http://www.MerchantAccount.org, http://www.TheFillPill.com, http://www.BuyArt.net, to list only a few of his top websites. It keeps up very busy and very stressed out!
My favorite all time drink is tea! I love hot tea in the morning and iced tea in the summer. I have a dangerous addiction to Teavana tea. My favorite is this one, iced. http://www.teavana.com/the-teas/best-tea-blends/p/youthberry-wild-orange-blossom-tea-blend I also develop a strange juice addition while Im pregnant and love the blood orange/tangerine blend I get from our local farmers market.
I just finished the Hunger Games trilogy.
I was an exchange student in Germany for a month. Other than that, I have traveled a lot between Oregon and California. My favorite place to go is somewhere outdoorsy. I love Big Sur and Yosemite. We are hoping to take little dude to Monteray Bay aquarium in the summer, the kid loves anything having to do with water!
I met my husband online. Seems appropriate as we are internet people. We met through yahoo personals.
I love baths! I hated them as a kid because my mom wouldnt let me take showers but now I treasure them. We just bought a house to be in a good school district with an excellent inclusion program for children with disabilities and we havent moved in yet as we are modeling the bathroom... which turned into remodeling the whole house. Our most important decision was finding a good jetted tub! We found a clearance tub at a contractors warehouse that they desperately needed to get rid of and got a really good deal. I cant wait to use it. AIden and I love to take baths together at night!
Hi Activealli, my Q's are all about food . . . something that's on my mind a lot these days!
What are your favorite foods? I mean what foods do you go for when you're sick? Or celebrating? Or sad? Or just famished? After a big workout? How has that changed during your pregnancy?
I am a mostly gluten free all vegetarian most vegan whole foody person! My most common foods are the 3 S's, soup, smoothies and salad. My splurge food is pizza or fries but both make me sick when Im pregnant, but I still eat them on occassion. When Im sick I make a big pot of veggie, beans and greens soup. When Im celebrating, I love something ethnic like moroccan or greek or italian. Famished: first thing i can get my hands on. This week it is eggless egg salad (its really really really good and tastes almost like the real thing) and rice crackers. Big workout: green smoothie. My favorite lately has been an almond butter, banana, spinach/kale, shelled hemp, flax, coconut beverage, and vegan protein powder in vanilla chai flavor. When Im pregnant I find myself graving more through the day, more frequent meals. I cant eat anything heavy. I have to stick to small, light, vegetable meals that are easy to digest or else I get nauseasted/indigestion/gas/bloating/constipated.
My favorite part of motherhood is knowing Im #1 to my son. He is a friendly guy, but when he doesnt feel good or Im around, he is all about me! I love the love!
Im looking forward to having a little girl and boy to cuddle! Im still scared of them being so close together and how hard its going to be. I love my son so much, I dont want him to feel any less close to me or me not being able to give him the attention he deserves.
As far as hobbies, most of them are outdoorsy activities. I am not a very crafty person. I love animals... is that a hobby? We have a new rescue doggie named Iggy who is a jack russel dachsund mix of sorts who follows me around like a shadow (he is sleeping next to my office chair now). We also have a house rabbit named Mr Bunny. 2 guinea pigs. 2 horses (boarded away from home). 3 exotic reptiles. I think that is all of them though I feel like Im missing one or two.
I was hoping you would get back online! It has been so fun to read about you a bit. I remember feeling terrified while expecting my second baby that I would never ever be able to love any other baby as much as I loved my first, and I was worried I wouldn't treat them the same. Ha ha ha. I was in for a shock :-) Love grows. That's all there is to it. As I read about your challenges with your little guy--I was so impressed with the great job you have done! And what a ROAD you've travelled! I want to go chew out your friend for feeling superior because she does things a little differently. I get so frustrated when moms feel that their choices as a mother make them superior. You have done an AMAZING job with what you have been given!!! And NO ONE knows better than you what is best for your family and your son. I hope you know that, but just wanted to give you a reminder in case you needed it!!
And the Irish Twins thing (babies one year apart) can be a bit of a bear. . my cousin and my best friend have both been through it, but it's totally doable! And both of them say their kids are so so close to each other as friends. I know you'll do great. Glad you're back. Sorry about the laptop!!
So glad you're back online!! Hope you're able to catch up with everything from business to .. here, of course ;)
I have a cousin (okay, it's dh's cousin, but we're all close and they're family :) ) who has Downs Syndrome. Actually, he has *two* cousins with Downs Syndrom (and yeah, they're young... they were in their 20s). But the one I'm thinking of was also born with a blockage in her intestines and had surgery shortly after. She also had leukemia, but battled and won and is now a thriving little kindergartener!! The other cousin has a son that is 2.5 now I think... he's just a few months older than my dd4. And he has a little sister that's just about a year old now :) So their family situation (boy with DS, then a little girl), makes me think of you :) That's all... no more questions, just adding in that I love reading your responses and love how much I can just feel you LOVE your little man!!
My favorite "place" is on back of one of my horses... but my actual geographical favorite place I guess would be hawaii!
Mantra... hmm... "shoot for the moon and if you miss, at least youll be among stars"