Sunday, February 26, 2012

Fruit Pizza

With as warm as the temp has been recently, I have been getting some spring fever. Summer can wait for a while... but Spring is welcome any day. I made this for dessert last night for dinner with our friends and came home with an empty plate. It is super easy and looks fancy schmancy...

Fruit Pizza (adapted from here)
- 1 roll refrigerated sugar cookie dough
- 8 oz. cream cheese (I use low-fat)
- 1/3 cup of white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Sliced fruit (You can use whatever fruit you would like, but I made it with strawberries and kiwi because they were on sale. I've also made a very patriotic version with blueberries because husband likes blueberries... but they were $5 a container, so this is fruit pizza - sans blueberries).

1. Pre-heat oven to 350 and lightly grease a cookie sheet (you can also use an un-greased pizza stone).

2. Roll cookie dough out to form one large cookie and bake for 10-15 minutes depending on thickness.

3. While your cookie is baking, soften cream cheese by heating for about 20 seconds in the microwave (out of the aluminum wrapper of course).

4. Mix together the cream cheese, vanilla and sugar using a hand mixer on medium until smooth like icing.

5. Once the cookie is completely cool, spread the cream cheese icing evenly and arrange the fruit in a pretty pattern. Be sure to refrigerate it if not serving immediately.


I made this for our monthly "family dinner" with these lovely ladies and their hubs. I must also give credit for the below picture to Andrea. Thanks for documenting, friend.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Letter to Heaven

Recently, twelve of our patients were lucky enough to go on a trip called Bert's Big Adventure. This is a trip down to Disney World sponsored by a local morning radio show's foundation. For five days, these families get to forget about daily struggles with their children's illnesses and just be families in Disney World. On the last day of the trip, the parents are asked by the radio station to write a letter to their child describing how much he or she means to them and read it on the air. Each year, these letters are so touching and usually evoke some tears from anyone that has a heart, but this year- I felt myself listening from a different perspective.. which is that of a mom. While my children are not here with me,  I know they are with Jesus waiting on us together. I was originally going to write this in my journal, but after I've gotten so many responses to previous posts from readers who are going through or have gone through the same thing- I figured I would make it public in hopes that it would inspire others to do the same.

My sweet babies,

I know that we never got to meet, but that doesn't change the fact that you both are now a permanent part of our lives. I don't know if your nurseries would have been filled with ribbons and bows or trucks and dinosaurs- or perhaps one with each. I don't know if your hair is dark like mine or blonde like your dad's... or perhaps red. I don't know if you would've been good sleepers or up all night- if you are anything like your dad and me... I would bet on good sleepers. I don't know what your favorite foods would have been and what foods would have ended up sprayed on our faces. I don't know what our bedtime routine would have been or your favorites songs. I don't know if we would've visited the princesses or the pirates on our trips to Disney World. I don't know if all of our money and Saturdays would have been devoted to baseball, soccer, golf.. or perhaps dance and cheerleading. I don't know if you would've been punctual rule followers like me or spontaneous with a hunger for adventure like your dad. I don't know if you would've been good at math like your dad or good at history and english like me.  I don't know where you would've gone to school, but I know we would've wholeheartedly supported you... even if it wasn't Clemson (don't tell dad). I don't know if you would've been doctors, or teachers or climbed the corporate ladder... or perhaps gone into ministry. I don't know if you would've met the loves of your lives in college or church... or in high school like your dad and me.

There are a lot of things I don't know- but I can tell you what I do know. I know that you are loved. You've taught us just how big our God is and how He loves us right where we're at. You've taught us that we won't be perfect parents, but we'll be better parents because of both of you. I know not to sweat the small stuff- that it will be ok if our house is messy and loud because it will be full of life. When your younger siblings come along, we will know to not take one single second with them for granted- because we'll recognize just how big of a miracle they are. When we're sleep deprived because your brothers or sisters are crying all night- we'll look at each other and remember the road we've traveled and how extraordinarily grateful we are to have them in our arms. When they're old enough, we'll tell them about both of you and how they will get to meet you too one day.

There are a lot of things that I don't know- but I do know that our God is faithful and He will see us through this. He thought both of you would serve a greater purpose with Him than here with us. We know we will get to meet you one day. Until that time, we miss you more than you know and love you very much.

love, mom

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

One for One

I know I am probably bringing up the rear on the bandwagon, but I have become mildly obsessed with Toms. When people used to wear them and say they were the most comfortable shoes they've ever worn... I would think to myself- "really? the most comfortable shoes you've EVER worn? doubtful". Husband got me my first pair for my birthday, and it feels like I'm walking on spongy pound cake... or air or foam or something. I'm sold.

Just when I thought I couldn't love them anymore... they came out with ballet flats. How stinkin' cute are these?

I haven't bought a pair yet because I can't decide which ones I want first. Toms also has a "One for One" program where for every pair they sell, they give a pair to a child in need. Another company that does this is Warby Parker. For every pair of glasses or sunglasses you buy from them, they provide either glasses or medical care to people in need. With my vision rapidly deteriorating thanks to staring at a computer most of the day, I think these will be my next pair.

One day, my blog might be sponsored and I will write product reviews because I'm getting paid to do it... but until then I will write reviews for things that I love... which is really the way that it should be.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Miracle Kid

Each year, Children's selects a few patients to be Children's Miracle Network "Miracle Kids". These are kids that have overcome incredible circumstances and beat the odds. If you go to Children's YouTube page, there are a few more that are posted, but I wanted to highlight one in particular. Some of you may remember the patient in Chris Tomlin's "I Lift My Hands" video. He was featured as a CMN kid this year. You can check out his mom's blog here. I would encourage you to watch his video and then click here to view our other 2012 miracle kids.

"This is not general surgery on a miniature scale. These are the tiny humans. These are children. They believe in magic. They play pretend. There is fairy dust in their IV bags. They hope, and they cross their fingers, and they make wishes, and that makes them more resilient than adults. They recover faster, survive worse. They believe." - Grey's Anatomy

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


10 years ago, there was a boy that showed up on my door step before school with a teddy bear wrapped around a single rose. He took me to Chick-fil-A for breakfast and we celebrated our "3 month anniversary" in addition to Valentine's Day. Today, that same Valentine left me this after he cleaned our bathroom. love. him.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Next Steps

Transparency. I have been very open and honest from the beginning on this blog and I hope I can continue to be as we go through this process. If you are a new reader, you can click here to read more about this. We saw a fertility specialist last week for a consultation. We both knew going into it that we can do all of the testing in the book and still end up right where we are now- with reasons unknown. The chances really are about 50/50 that they'll find a reason. The good news is that my doctor was very encouraging in saying that there is a very good chance of my next pregnancy resulting in a healthy baby. "My next pregnancy"- I don't take those words lightly. I know that getting pregnant is half the battle and there are millions of women out there that are struggling daily to even do that and my heart breaks for them.  I am very thankful that I am able to get pregnant. Our prayer is just that I will be able to stay pregnant. Even if we're not able to find a reason through the testing, she would like to treat my next pregnancy with baby aspirin (for possible clotting issue) and progesterone (to sustain a pregnancy early on) regardless, because there is no harm in doing so. That alone is reassuring to me, because it feels like a tangible step. Right now, that is what I need- something tangible, something that I feel I can control... even though I know full well that I am ultimately not in control.

So that is where we are right now. The testing will involve a lot of blood work, a high tech ultrasound and weeks of waiting. Waiting on results. Waiting to try again. Waiting on the God. This morning's devotional spoke directly to me as if it was sealed in an envelope with my name on it sitting in my mailbox.

"God's tender heart must often ache listening to our sad, complaining cries. Our weak, impatient hearts cry out because we fail to see through tear-blinded, short-sighted eyes that it is for our own sakes that He does not answer at all or that He answers in a way we believe is less than the best. In fact, the silences of Jesus are as eloquent as His words and may be a sign not of His disapproval but of His approval and His way of providing a deeper blessing for you." L.B. Cowman & Jim Reimann

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Creamy Margherita Pizza

Just by looking at the title, you can probably guess that I made this while husband wasn't home."Creamy" is on his list of disliked words and really most of his disliked foods. It is a recipe I got from a friend's blog who got it from here

- 1 roll Pillsbury pizza dough
- 1/2 cup Philadelphia cooking cream, Italian cheese and herb.
- 1 tomato sliced thin
- 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese (I really used about a whole cup, let's be honest)
- Handful of fresh basil, chopped

1. Drizzle some EVOO on a cookie sheet to prevent sticking.

2. Roll out the pizza dough to desired thickness.

3. Spread the Philly cooking cream on the dough. I don't really like to measure, so I ended up using a bit too much. You should end up spreading a very thin layer on the dough (not like my pictures below).

4. Sprinkle the chopped basil evenly on top of the cooking cream.

5. Layer the tomatoes evenly across.

6. Top with mozzarella cheese.

7. Bake for 10-12 minutes at 425 or until the crust is brown and the cheese is melted.