Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Freedom, Faith, and Family

"On days like today I find myself reflecting on the important issues of faith, family, and freedom. These three issues are intertwined. One cannot be struck without impacting the others. I cannot adequately express the tremendous gratitude I feel to Heavenly Father for allowing me to live with my family in a time and place in which we have the opportunity to freely worship Him."- Elder Jeffrey R. Holland

I found this quote over the Fourth of July Weekend and have to say that completely reflects our weekend.  It was a simple one.  We are grateful for this family we have here on earth, grateful for our faith that gives us hope to be reunited one day and grateful for the freedoms of this country that we can worship how we may.

We didn't go out of town and not too much family was in town but we were able to slow down from the normal bustle of Rusty's job and my duties at home.  I love when he has time off and we can spend time as a whole family. 

Rusty was able to come to my gym and work out with me! It was fun having him there!

I am not sure what all of our eyes were doing in this picture.  It was bright outside?  We went to downtown Gilbert and ate Joe's BBQ in all our festive apparel. I know I have said it before but I am in love with my LulaRoe skirts/dresses.  They are so comfy and cute.

Grandma Fife holding the boys. They were a bit nervous about the neighbors fireworks.

Karter really wanted them to end. He didn't like being so close to the noise.

We held him close and it was really kind of humorous. 

Keaton didn't mind the noise one bit and had his eyes glued to the fireworks.

Things calmed down a bit when the "real" firework show started.

Yes we are lucky enough to be close enough to the fireworks that we can stay in the neighborhood.

Grandma snuggles!

July 5th- Out and about and stopped in at Jamba Juice for lunch. We love that place!

The boys love their dad.

On Sunday we had a pretty chill day.  The boys were slightly feverish so I left them home and went to church by myself.  I came home and made an amazingly yummy "healthy" dinner.  You can find that on my instagram @fife_food. We also made a VERY easy and VERY yummy dessert. I would have to say it was the best looking and best tasting cookie I have yet to taste. Don't worry I'll share the recipe. 

Got this recipe off of pinterest....I was a skeptic until now! Look how fluffy they are.  Seriously do yourself a favor and go make these.  Be careful you may eat all of them.  2 Tips- don't MELT your butter only soften it and use a cookie scoop.  They ended up needing to be cooked longer in my oven than the recipe calls for and it only made 16 cookies...I had a few more than my share ;)
Best-Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies
barely adapted from Anna Olson, Food Network Canada
3/4 c. unsalted butter, softened 
3/4 c. brown sugar 
1/4 c. granulated sugar 
1 egg 
2 tsp. vanilla extract 
2 c. all purpose flour 
2 tsp. cornstarch 
1 tsp. baking soda 
1/2 tsp. salt 
1 c. bittersweet chocolate chips
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars until fluffy and light in color. Add egg and vanilla and blend in.
3.  Mix in flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Stir in chocolate chunks.
4.  Using a standard-sized cookie scoop or tablespoon, drop dough onto a prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, until barely golden brown around the edges.  (The tops will not brown, but do NOT cook longer than ten minutes.) (the key for ME- let them cook till they weren't shiny on top-I think my cookie scoop made them bigger than this lady's cookie scoop.)
5.  Let cool, on the sheet, on a wire rack for five minutes.  (MUST DO THIS) Remove from baking sheet and let cool completely.  Makes approximately 3 dozen.  Try not to eat them all.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Health and Wellness

Easter 2013- very pregnant with our third boy!

2 weeks Post Pardom with Keaton
Can we just talk about the ups and downs of weight gain and weight loss during the years of pregnancy?  I just have to say it is hard to be motivated sometimes to loose all that weight when you know you are just going to do it again.  But let me tell you something....it is worth it. It is worth it for your health and energy alone.   It took me a while and some vanity to realize this.
Without taking you through my whole up and downs of weight gain and weight loss I will start with how I felt just a short 4 months ago.  I had lost a little more weight since this picture was taken but I had not made much progress.  I was weighing myself all the time thinking that if I ate healthy for 3 days surely my weight would just fall right off....right? no.
I was sick and tired of not buckling down to just get the extra baby weight off.  I was chatting with my friend one day about it and how I was just tired of feeling flabby every where. She was already into crossfit.  She told me to just try it for a week.  Come to her gym where my friend is actually the owner and try it.  What could it hurt?  I walked in with wide eyes and feeling insecure and flabby.  Everyone was very friendly and nice.  It was very family oriented and I was able to put my two crazy boys in the day care.  Before this I have never had a gym membership.  I worked out at home after I had my second son to loose my weight.  With two busy boys that was no longer working for me...I needed someone to push me and realize my potential.  When I look back to where I was 4 months ago I am very proud of what I have accomplished. 
I started going like I said for vanity. I wanted to look better when what I feel like I have gotten most out of this 4 month journey is a clearer mind and more energy.  I am still working on goals and bettering myself every day but my hope in posting this is that you can be inspired to make goals for your health and mental well being.  Your body and mind will thank you. 
This is what helped me get into the habit:
1. make the goal (s)
2. put a reminder in your phone
3. be consistent
4. find your motivation
5. Eat better
6. Workout
One book I would suggest reading to get you started is Body for Life.  You can buy it on Amazon
I do crossfit but I like his mentality for "eating for life."  Find good at home crossfit style workouts HERE and better food options HERE and follow me on my instagram for Fife approved yummy healthy food Here
Here is a good philosophy: EAT LESS CRAP!- Get results!
Disclaimer- I am not a nutritionist or an expert but have found being consistent is the best route.  

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

New Look!

I just have to give a big shout out to this sweet lady named Theresa. Thank you for helping me setup my blog! I wanted a fresh look and she helped a sister out. For an awesome product at a good price you can find templates on her etsy accout at https://www.etsy.com/shop/AlwaysInBluhm. Let her know I sent you!

I decided that I need to share my story with others to help inspire myself and others through my blog.  If you like what you see here please feel free to follow me for updates.  I still have some work to do with this blog.  I need to create a few pages for followers to get to know us a little easier.

When I meet people in the store or for the first time the dreaded question they ask me is "how many children do you have?"  Well, to be honest I hate that question.  I have 3 boys. One died when he was almost six months old and I have two crazy boys 3.5 and 15 months. For the first couple years I would tell people I would always include Kaden in my number and then more questions would come and I would get into sticky situations because the look in their face and the awkwardness I would feel out of telling them my first son passed away was not fun to feel.  Now to avoid awkwardness I decided if I am going to see them again I will tell them but if I am just passing by and meeting in the grocery store....sometimes I just save them the pain.

I have had the thought I would love to just have a place I could direct people to when they meet me that they could get to know me.  I am pretty wide open on my blog because it is easy to be. My hope is to write more for my children and for my grandchildren and more.  Also, another goal of mine through this blog is to inspire other moms and families.  We each have our own story and I am still creating mine.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014


This was the day Kaden was born- June 5, 2009
He weighed 1 pound 14 ounces and was 24 weeks 2 days gestational age.
Being the first time parents that we were we were overwhelmed, scared and naïve.

I had complications with my pregnancy that put me on bed rest starting at 12 weeks.  I was 23 weeks when I starting feeling like something really wasn't right.  I decided to go to labor and delivery to make sure.  I was at a 1 and 80 percent.  I didn't know what that meant at the time and tried to ask my mom and the nurse but they wouldn't tell me.  All I know is that they wanted to keep me for observation which resulted in admitted to the hospital.  I was at Banner Gateway Hospital.  They are not a level 3 NICU and so I wanted to be transferred to Banner Dessert. Which I finally convinced my doctor to let me transfer before viability.

This picture was taken on Father's day when we were doing what they called his "care's."  His incubator is open in this picture so we could change his diaper, take his temp and weigh him.

We knew before his was born that he would have a cleft lip.  His younger brother Karter had one as well. They both have this same concerned look! Keaton and Kaden resemble each other the most in my opinion.

He was still in the NICU but this was him getting much healthier. Only requiring oxygen to breath.

Rusty loved to sit at Kaden's bedside.  We just had to let him grow and get healthier so we were not able to do to much with him.  Our daily routine consisted of- I would get ready at home, do a few things, eat, pack a lunch, and come down and sit with Kaden and do as many "cares" as I could do while I was there. Rusty would go to work and them come after work and spend a couple hours before we would go home.

Kaden could live in the bath.  He was always so calm and happy in the bath!

This picture was taken on my actual due date- September 22nd. I am not sure exactly how much he weighed but I think he was 5 lbs and a couple ounces. It was a hard day for me thinking the what if he was just born on his due date.
We were home! He was doing well and growing.  He was still requiring oxygen, apnea monitor, pulse ox and feeding tube but we were just excited to be home with him feeling like a "normal" family.
 This is what leaving our apartment looked like.  It was no easy task and took some preparation but we liked to get out every once in a while.  If we left the house it was for an outing to grandparents or to the doctor.  It was winter time and with his health being so compromised we couldn't risk taking him out anywhere.  We did take him to Jersey Mike's once on a date and we kept him hidden in the stroller.
He started requiring more oxygen at home and so we took him to the cardiologist to have an echocardiogram.  He had severe pulmonary hypertension.  He was addimited back in the hospital this time into the PICU.  My worst fears were coming true.

He was not progressing in the hospital and we knew he was not going to get better so we had to make the decision to take him off life support. He was 5 days shy of 6 months old.
I debated if I should include this but I think it depicts such love that we have for Kaden and each other.  It has been almost five years.  When I say that it feels like so long ago but not long ago all at the same time. Rusty has been my rock through the good and hard times since.
I wish this picture wasn't so blurry but it is at the gravesite. You can see how surrounded with love we were bore up.
Although I am huge and almost ready to pop with our third boy Keaton in this picture I had to include this.  This was on Easter 2013.  Easter has a whole new meaning for me than it did before loosing Kaden.  I know because of Our Savior's love, the Resurrection and the Atonement we are able to be with our son Kaden again someday.

Monday, April 28, 2014

What we are up to lately

Keaton turned one this month and his birthday was pretty uneventful. It landed on April 5th and so we had LDS conference that weekend so we didn't have much time to celebrate him.   The plan was to have a birthday party later like the next week but we didn't get around to it.  I know mom fail!

He is not yet walking but crawls, climbs and pulls himself up onto everything.  Karter is his little taxi around the house and he is becoming quite opioniated about that.  His only words are mamma and dada with a little "yelling" at Karter and shaking when he gets frustrated.  Oh boy am I in trouble! They have a very "love/hate" relationship....only because Karter wants to be in charge ALL the time. That's what big brothers do right? 

We are a little crazy busy between the boys business and Rusty's school, work and church calling schedule.  Life is always going to be busy and I know my hard right now will look easy compared to my hard in a few years so I really can't and shouldn't complain.  :)

I have found a new love-my crossfit gym.  I never thought I would love working out....and really during my workout I am not exactly loving it.  But I am pushing myself, getting results, and feeling much healthier.  It is something in the day that I get to do for just me.  It's a nice break from my crazy but cute boys and I look forward/dread it every day!!

Karter is getting smarter and cuter by the day! We got him tubes to help resolve some of his hearing issues (that I didn't know about...butwhenifoundout I was like hmm....that explains why I am repeating myself SO much more than I should!) Problem resolved....not so much repeating...makes for a much less frustrated mom!

We are doing well and enjoying every last bit of the "nice" weather here in the pit of Az.

what do you do with your kids during the summer to keep them busy?? any ideas?

Family Pictures 2014