Monday, December 27, 2010

BIG ultrasound

And when I say big, I don't just mean the ultrasound itself... we have a big baby. Our little bundle is measuring a full week and a half ahead of where he should be. He's supposed to be just reaching his one pound mark, but they say he's more than likely already a pound and a half. That doesn't sound like much of a difference, but when his weight is supposed to double over the next 4 weeks... and then double again, you see where this is headed.

Other than being bigger than we expected, he's forming beautifully. Everything looks great and all systems are where they are supposed to be. And he is FOR SURE a boy... NO question!

He's laying head down with his legs up above his head, almost in a yoga position. So I get kicked up high, and punched down low... and he REALLY moves a ton now. Not too painful yet, but soon he'll be packing quite a punch I'm sure.

Here are a few ultrasound pics....

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Black Family Christmas Party

Last Saturday we trekked up to Heber for a fun Christmas party with Spencer's family. We had a yummy lunch, the kids all participated in the nativity reenactment, and we opened some gifts. We hadn't seen most of his family since summer, so it was fun to visit and catch up. Out of the blue, Hallie climbed up on Spencer's mom's lap, threw her arms around her and said, Oh, grandma, I love you so much! His mom was SO thrilled! I am really happy with how well my kids are blending in with his family. They are all very welcoming and sweet. Again, I just feel SO blessed...

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Half Way!

I am half way to getting this little guy here... his movement has really picked up this week. I can feel him kicking and bumping around inside. And Spencer has finally felt him thump a few times. Hallie and Audrey are obsessed with hugging and kissing my belly. We are getting past the shock and becoming much more excited. Big ultrasound scheduled in 2 weeks.

Here's a belly shot from this week... can't hide the fact that I've got something going on!

Monday, November 22, 2010


I started feeling my baby moving this past weekend... I love this milestone. Up until now pregnancy always feels so surreal, but feeling the fluttering and squirming inside makes it suddenly very real! I'm sure I won't feel quite the same about him moving and groving once he's kicking me in the ribs and keeping me up at night, but I love the reassuring feeling right now that he's really in there.

This pregnancy is really moving along quickly... and with the holidays over the next 5 weeks, it will zoom by even quicker. Looking forward to 2011 and his debut in April. It will be here before I can even think about it. Yay!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Locks of Love

Last week Hallie was complaining as usual while I brushed her long hair and pulled it back into a pony tail. She wanted to wear it down, but I explained how snarly it gets when she wears it down to school. She pleaded, "Mom, can't I just please cut my hair shorter so i can wear it down?" Well, duh... why didn't I suggest that! I said, well sure you can if that's really what you want... and you know, you can also donate it to be made into a wig so someone who is sick and doesn't have hair will have beautiful hair to wear. That was it, she totally wanted to donate her long hair. I waited 2 days to make sure she really wanted to go through with it. Thursday morning we took her to Fantastic Sams (who is awesome by the way, free haircut if you donate your hair) and the transformation began...

She was thrilled with her new short hairdo and so excited her hair will be used to help someone in need with Locks of Love. Proud mom is a complete understatement. I love this kid!!!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

We are having a.....

This morning we had a gentic screening ultrasound because according to all the stats I am old and at a slightly increased risk for genetic abnormalities. It isn't anything I am super concerned about, but just want to be on the safe side and have as much info as possible about this little baby. After a meeting with a genetic counselor and getting some blood work (and a HUGE wait because as usual they were running behind), we got to take a peek at our little baby again. As all the measurements were being done, the ultrasound tech was talking with us about our other kids and asked us what they were hoping this baby would be... then she asked if we wanted her to look and see if she could tell. Um.... YES!!!!! So she scanned under the baby and it was immediately obvious what we are going to have... it's a BOY!!!! His parts are so obvious and even the tech was surprised. She said she's never seen a baby so obviously a boy at this early of a stage in pregnancy. I'm just shy of 13 weeks, but measuring a full week ahead. There's no question he's a boy and we are very excited! He looked good and the heartbeat was measuring normal. We'll have preliminary results about the genetic screening soon and then some more bloodwork to follow-up and so we should have some good info about his health. We are both really happy he's a boy... this is awesome for our family! :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Going Nowhere...

So, have I ever mentioned how much this housing market sucks??? Maybe a few times. Now I really hate it. Our buyer's financing fell through yesterday. Yep, THREE days before we are supposed to move. We are packed, we had our rental home secured and deposit paid, we had met with our builders to get the new home started (luckily had not paid them any money yet), and now we are beyond frustrated...

We were SO close to finally progressing with this whole housing situation. Now we are back at the starting line. It really sucks and we are pretty upset. So our house is going back on the market and we are staying put. And now we are going into the hardest time to sell a home... the holidays. I just can't believe this has happened... are we a bullseye for bad luck or what? Sheesh!!!! Somebody throw some good karma our way! PLEASE!!!!

Monday, September 27, 2010


Our townhome is under contract and technically sold. 99% sure the financing will be fine for the people who want to buy it, so in less than 3 weeks we are going to be homeless. They want us out by October 15th...

We've found a couple rental homes we are trying to look at and hopefully one will be able to agree to our terms of a 6 month lease while our new home is being built. If all goes well, we will be applying for permits and getting things underway with construction very soon... hopefully getting our basement dug out before the ground freezes for the winter!

We are VERY excited and honestly totally freaked out at the same time! Stress levels are super high at our house, but we're taking it a day at a time and happy that we are moving onto the next phase with getting into our dream home. YAY!!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Are you serious??? It's +++

Yes, this is exactly what is looks like... an ultrasound picture of our surprise pregnancy. Okay, so it looks like a blob, but it's a tiny little baby complete with a very beautiful and healthy beating heart.
Just FYI... The pill is seriously only 99.7% effective people... we are living proof!!! I'm now about 9 weeks along... due the end of April. We've known for about a month and are still a little shell-shocked, but the kids are pretty excited and we are starting to get more excited as well (just needs to sink in). Wow, seven kids... I'm shaking a little just typing that! This little miracle will be VERY loved... ♥ Hoping for an uneventful pregnancy and a healthy baby. :)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Our house... the infirmary

We have been passing around the flu/cold bug for almost a week now. Started with Audrey last week and moved on to Spencer and I (although didn't affect us as bad as her) and then Kesley got it, and finally Hallie and Dallin. Now Max and Ash are with us this week and I'm just waiting for them to catch it as well. Ugh... I hate sicknesses!!! Maybe we'll be lucky and get them done early this year and have some luck through the winter without getting anything major. Flu shots are at my work next week... we are ALL getting them!

And to add insult to injury, I have a lovely eye infection that makes it look like I'm crying all the time. Enough is enough, right? Seeing my Dr tomorrow for even more issues... Stop the insanity!!!!!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

August Recap...

WOW, this past month has seriously been crazy!!! I'm pretty happy to see it go and move onto fall... Some of the MANY things we accomplished/got through/survived/and even enjoyed:
  • My birthday weekend... thank you Spencer!
  • Scorpions concert... this was my favorite band in high school. Man, they are old... but they can still Rock It Like a Hurricane (forgive me, that was pretty lame).
  • Stuck kidney stone = emergency surgery. ugh... NOT fun!!!
  • Back to school shopping, shopping and more shopping! 6 kids is killing us!!!
  • Work deadlines and projects... but at least I got out of going on my DC trip!
  • Hopefully we have figured out a way to sell our house and still keep our credit in tact... now we need some buyers. C'mon, we're practially giving it away...
  • Kids started school: Kesley is a junior, Ash is in 8th, Dallin in 5th, Max in 4th, Hallie in kindergarten, and Audrey in pre-school. And the 6 of them are at 5 different schools.
  • Dallin, Max and Ash are playing soccar this fall... we have either games or practices EVERY day except Sunday for the next 7 weeks. It's crazy...
  • Kesley got her first car... and it was terrifying watching her drive it away from the DMV after we registered it. My baby is almost 17!
  • And one last major last thing I'm not going to post yet... have to figure some stuff out first.

Bring it on September. After this past month, I think I'm ready for anything.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Can I just say this housing market is insane!!!!! When Spence and I got married this past spring, we decided that my 4 kids & I would move in with him & his 2 kids into the townhouse he bought in Nov 2008. 8 people in a 3 bedroom sounds ridiculous (and it is), but we were confident it would be temporary. We were working with his bank to short sale the townhouse since it appraised for $15,000 less than he owed on it. AND we were willing to take out a loan for the difference (out of our own pockets) to ensure the bank received their FULL LOAN amount. AND if the townhouse still wouldn't sell (plan B), we'd rent it out.

We've picked out our house to build and lot to build it on. We have the money to put down on it. Then everything fell apart. New housing regulations were released from the feds... Anything termed a short sale would be reported on your credit as a foreclosure. WHA??????? The bank gets ALL of the original loan paid back to them and it's STILL a foreclosure? I know, makes NO sense to us either. OK, so we'll rent it out... NOPE!!! Regulations now say that rental income has to be reported on your taxes for TWO YEARS before it will count as income.

AND to make everything so much better (that was SO sarcastically typed)... the townhouse community that we live in continues to build even more townhouses and selling them even lower than this townhouse is approved to short sale for. Who in their right mind would buy a more expensive used townhouse if you can buy a brand new one for less money. No idiot I've ever met.

We are SO frustrated. We both have good jobs and make decent incomes... we would qualify for twice the home we want to build. But because we can't get out of this stupid townhouse, we are stuck. We obviously can afford our home but we don't fit in it. Victims of a ridiculous situation we have NO control over. At this point, I'd love to just pack our things and walk away... except that would cremate Spencer's credit and we'd be unable to build/purchase a home for 5 years. Even then, it would be hard to get a good interest rate. And rates are SOOOOO low right now, who knows where they will be in 5 years. Home prices could again skyrocket by then too...

So what do we do? We cannot stay here much longer. Kids are going insane and making us lunatics as well. It isn't fair to them and nobody has any privacy. Ugh, seems like an impossible situation, huh? I know I'm not the only one stuck in a messy housing problem, and I am grateful we have a home and we can afford it... we just don't fit in it!!! Grrr..........

Monday, August 2, 2010

Highlights from my Birthday Weekend

Yesterday was my birthday, but in true Rachel-style, I like to drag it out and party and celebrate for as long as I can... My fun started last Thursday...

Thursday, July 29th

  • Left work early to get my 3 youngest ready to go camping with their dad for the whole weekend. I love my kids dearly, but this was much anticipated because it meant I would have 3 whole days to sleep in as long as I wanted... oh, the blissful heaven of laying in bed and not having a 3 year old pestering you for cartoons & apple jacks at the butt-crack of dawn on a weekend...

  • Received some unexpected birthday cash in the mail from my grandma... woo-hoo!!!!!

  • Went to a lovely dinner with my amazing husband Spencer and his two kids, Max and Ashley to Spaghetti Factory. Oh, dinner was SO good!!!! It was really nice to do something with just them for a change.

Friday, July 30th

  • Saw "Dinner For Schmucks" with Spencer and my oldest Kesley. She really didn't want to go at first, but ended up having a great time with us. After we grabbed a quick lunch at the mall food court and then shopped a little too. Spence got me the cutest necklace...

  • Later, dropped of Kes to work and picked up some yummy pasta for a quiet dinner at home. Watched a movie and got to relax!

Saturday, July 31st

  • Spence gave me my present a little early... cutest tee from Buckle... I love it!!!

  • Headed over to Good Times Tattoo and got my 2nd tattoo (the ankh - Egyptian symbol of life) on my ankle. Also touched up my hearts tattoo on my shoulder blade and added a flourish to tie it together better. VERY happy with the outcome... but OUCH!!!!

  • Quick lunch and a little shopping at the Gateway. Got a new phone case for my IPhone.

  • On our way home we bought 2 new fish for our fish tank as well as figurines of Spongebob and Patrick - we already have the "pineapple under the sea" in our tank, so this made sense, right? :)

  • Stopped to see my mom and she surprised me with a new book that I wanted and $$$... glad we got to visit with her for a bit.

  • Didn't feel like going anywhere that evening, so we made a frozen pizza and finished watching Season 6 of 24... we are almost caught up!

  • Had my first diet coke in 2 months.... hey, it's MY birthday!!!

Sunday, August 1st... MY ACTUAL BIRTHDAY!!!

  • Had a very low key day... slept in till 11am. Colored my hair. Ordered 2 more shirts from Buckle with birthday money from my mom (thanks mom!). Pre-ordered a book coming out later this month.

  • Spence gave me a very sweet birthday card.

  • We had a yummy dinner at Happy Sumo... Vegas roll - my fav & Coconut Encrusted Halibut (seriously, it's like candy... SOOOO good!) I love that place!!! ♥

  • Finally found a water bottle at Dicks Sporting Goods to replace the one I melted in the dishwasher. I am SO particular about my stupid water bottle, but this one is awesome.... and it's pink :)

  • Picked up my kids from camping... they were all freshly bathed and even their laundry had been done. Happy Birthday to me! I missed them, so it was awesome to get them back again. They were tired, but had a blast.

  • Went home and kids sang me happy birthday and we had cupcakes and ice cream that Spencer had picked up earlier.... so thoughtful.

  • Kes gave me some really cool earrings and lip gloss. I love that she picked something out for me... it was really sweet of her to do. Made my day.

  • Finally got to crawl in bed and watch E! with Spence... perfect ending to my birthday weekend!!!


  • Planning a birthday lunch with my work friends.

  • Lunch on Wednesday with my bestest long lost friend Shalayne.

  • Lagoon on Saturday with Spence, Kes, Ash & Max (rest of the kids are floating the river with their dad).

  • AND in 2 weeks... Scorpions concert!!!!! These tickets were also a birthday gift from my amazing husband. Can't wait!!!!

Monday, June 28, 2010

End of June

Summer is FLYING by, and by flying I mean I'm seriously getting whiplash watching is race on by... I can't believe it's almost July! We really haven't done a whole lot of note-worthy activities this past month. It seems like just adjusting to our new family life and settling into a routine has been enough to tackle for now. And we are doing quite well with all of that... especially considering all 8 of us are living in a 3 bedroom town home. We are working on a deal with the bank, so hopefully we can lower the price significantly and get this thing sold... AND keep our credit in tact so we can start building our new home. Yep, I think we are going to build in Farmington. We've pretty much decided on a location and as soon as the bank confirms the deal we are proposing, we can start to move forward with our next steps of this process...

Kids are busy too.... one word summaries of their summers:
Kesley - Work!
Ashley - Soccer
Dallin & Max - Video Games (2 of them = 2 words)
Hallie - Coloring
Audrey - Barbies

Not that these things are ALL that they do... I would feel like such a bad mom! But they are very busy with the above activities. Each of them are super good kids and we really love having our combined family life... it's SO busy (and noisy) and yeah, there's a lot of drama... but considering our close living quarters right now, we are doing very, very well and the kids all enjoy each other and being at home with everyone.

♥ Spence and I have been married for 2 months now and we are SO happy... life is very good and we feel extremely fortunate. Dream. Come. True.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Hallie's Dance Recital

Hallie had her spring recital about a week ago. She refused to show me any of her routines, so I was a little concerned she would just stand there and do nothing. Nope!!! She totally rocked it... was one of the only girls that knew what she was doing. I was laughing and so proud at the same time. Love this kid!!!

Monday, May 3, 2010


Just a few pics from our wedding on April 20th...

...and a few from our honeymoon vacation to Cancun, Mexico...

Monday, April 12, 2010


I am gatting married a week from tomorrow. To say I am excited doesn't even begin to cover it. I love Spencer more than I can even explain... he is the p-e-r-f-e-c-t match for me. I am so happy to start a life with him and to be his wife. I sincerely can't wait.......... LOTS of photos to come soon! ♥