Thursday, March 27, 2014

Devastating Landslide in Oso Hits Close to Home

I'm sure by now, the entire country has heard of the deadly landslide that took place in the small town of Oso, Washington after an entire mountainside collapsed.  Calling it a "mudslide" is undermining the gravity of this disaster.
www.seattlepi.com
Last Saturday, a 25-foot high mudslide rushed through Oso, demolishing nearly everything in it's path.  Oso is a small town north of Seattle, with a population of just about 200.  With 49 homes in the mudslide's path, there have been 16 bodes pulled from the aftermath and eight more located but not yet recovered; putting the death toll at 24 and the official missing person's number is 90. 
I have been glued to the news at home and on the radio on my commute, and have been tragically reminded just how precious and fleeting our minutes are. 
  • My friend's husband was running behind schedule for a hunting trip that day and missed it by mere minutes.  He was stopped behind the one mile stretch of highway that was taken out by the mudslide and the photo he posted on Facebook was how I heard about it; not yet realizing the magnitude of the situation.
  • A family left their Oso home for a trip to Costco just eight minutes before the mudslide.
  • A woman left her mother at home to watch her baby while she went to work for the day.  Grandmother and baby are gone.  This grandmother worked in a dental office for 20 years and they are also mourning her loss.
  • I used to work with a gal who lives in Oso, so of course I was worried that she got caught up in this.  Thankfully, her farm is not located in the area devastated by the mudslide. 
The crew working without ceasing to find more bodies is spurred by the hope that they may find people alive in an air pocket or trapped in a house.  Not to mention anyone who might have been driving on the highway at the time and washed away in their car. 
  • A four-year-old boy was rescued via helicopter after he was spotted from above; the mud ripped his pants right off of him.  His father and brothers are still missing.  My friend's son was friends with one of the brothers.
  • A woman talks about seeing the wave of earth rolling toward her house and braced herself to ride it out with her friend who was with her.  Mud filled her eyes, nose and mouth, but they fought with everything they had and thankfully survived.
As I was listening to the news reports on the radio yesterday on my drive home from work, I continued to feel more and more urgency to help.  This hits so close to home, as we live south of Seattle, in a valley, and it now has me thinking about the possibility that this could happen where we live as well. 
I pulled into a gas station and turned off my car to fill up, and when I got out, a lady in the car next to me had the exact same story I was listening to blaring on her radio, so I continued to listen with an aching heart.
Hearing the first-hand accounts from workers and volunteers about what they are experiencing at the site is so...heartbreaking.  I don't even know what other word to use to describe it.  A man broke down crying talking about coming across baby clothes, children's books and a box full of toys.  He picked up one of the books and on the inside cover was written "it's a beautiful world". 
It is a beautiful world...where bad things happen.  But the world is also filled with beautiful people who sacrifice their own comfort to help those in need. 

Mark Mulligan, AP, The Daily Herald, Everett
  • The picture above is a local boy who is a Senior in high school.  He's been working tirelessly helping the rescue crew, using duct tape to help keep the mud out of his boots.
  • A man immediately flew out from Pittsburg to help with search and rescue.  He has family who are among the missing.
  • Brave, generous people from around the country, and world, are traveling to Oso to offer their support and assistance with not only the rescue and recovery, but to also offer emotional support for the grieving families who survived.
Here are some ways you can help:
  1. Call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation, or online at the Red Cross donation site. 
  2. Donate to The Salvation Army here or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY.  You can also send a check marked "disaster relief" to The Salvation Army, Northwest Divisional Headquarters, 111 Queen Anne Avenue N #300, Seattle, WA, 98109. 
  3. Five people remain in serious condition at Harborview, ranging in age from 5-months-old, to 81-years-old.  Thankfully they are all improving.  Cards or letters of well-wishes and prayers can be send to: "Oso Landslide Patient," Harborview Medical Center, 325 9th Avenue, Seattle WA, 98104
  4. You can donate to the Cascade Valley Hospital Foundation Disaster Fund HERE.  Cascade Valley Hospital is location in Oso's neighboring town of Arlington, and all funds raised go to those affected by the mudslide. 
  5. Stay updated on various ways to donate via the Mudslide Info and Relief Effort Facebook page
  6. Click HERE for ways you can help pets affected by the mudslide.
  7. Ed Russell is a local business man collecting and delivering items necessary to help with the rescue efforts; items that might not come to mind when thinking about donating, but are so highly important.  i.e.: Volunteers are using their personal tractors and chainsaws to help rescue workers navigate through the rubble, and this equipment continually needs gas in order to operate.  Russell says there's no way to fathom just how grave the situation is at the slide site, and the need will continue for a long time to come.  The following items needed can be delivered or sent to his business address, or you can call Ed Russell at 425-308-2549 to ask how you can help.
Senior Aerospace AMT
20100 71st Ave. NE
Arlington, WA 98223
 
Non-perishable food
Baby items (diapers, baby formula)
Heavy duty work gloves
Shovels
Power saws
Work boots
Duct tape
Gas gift cards
Tylenol
Ibuprofen
Chainsaw bar oil
Two-stroke oil
Gas in cans
 *Many of these items can be purchased on Amazon.com
and shipped to Russell if you don't live in the area*
 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Humor and Hope After Miscarriage




The above picture was my first appointment with my midwife at the end of November, when I was 6 weeks pregnant, and Lucy sitting in the exact spot where she was born!  We hold on to the hopeful anticipation of the day we can return to this bed with good news. 

My appointment after the one above was not joyful, as I shared in  I am the Face: My Personal Story of Miscarriage.  As we are moving forward past this season of our lives, I have thought back to this painful time and realized there is some humor to be found, and sometimes it's healing to find the humor in the midst of pain...

Three days after my midwife confirmed what I already knew, miscarriage, I was able to see the OBGYN, Dr. Michael B. Smith (all I could think of was Michael W. Smith).  The first room is where my vitals were taken, introductions were made, and questions were asked.  He then decided he wanted to do an exam, and wanted to do so in a different room.  So I moved to room #2 and stripped from the waist down for a couple of people I had just met moments ago, Dr. Smith and his assistant.  Major awkward factor. 
 
As I stared at the speaker in the ceiling above me, pretending this wasn't awkward at all, I heard the speculum loudly click open a few times, with a final LOUD click, and then Dr. Smith said "uh oh...it broke." 

"What?! Wait, what broke? Where?!"  Needless to say I had many thoughts floating around in my head and was slightly worried about what broke and where.   I let out an uncomfortable laugh like everything was fine, when I was really freaking out just a little on the inside.
 
His assistant handed him a new speculum and we were on our way to awkward-land once again.  He was concerned with the amount of bleeding I was still having, even though my cervix was closed, so he wanted to do a vaginal ultrasound.  I was wondering to myself if he just wanted to make sure I didn't have speculum remnants remaining (I never did find out what part of the speculum broke, exactly).  I'll just take that as a sign that my kegels are paying off :)
 
The assistant quickly followed the Dr. out of the room to find out what he wanted to do next, and left me lying in wait on the table covered in a thin paper sheet, listening to "Smooth Operator" play on the radio and I just had to laugh out loud! "Seriously?!", I said to the speaker in the ceiling above me.

When the assistant returned, she told me we would have to move to another room to where the vaginal ultrasound machine was located.  Oh geeeez.  I had to get dressed and wait in the waiting room until they were ready, and then off to my third and final room of the day.
 
The vaginal ultrasound revealed everything looked good, he told me that if I was still bleeding come Monday, then he wanted to see me again.  Thankfully, as we had prayed it would, my body did what it was created to do in this circumstance and he didn't think any medication nor a D&C were needed. 
 
I said "thank you" and as Dr. Smith reached the door, he turned to face me and said...
 "better luck next time...and...happy new year". 

I'm not even kidding you right now.

Yes, I am trying to make light of the situation, and yet my heart is broken just the same.  I can now find some humor in this situation, because sometimes that's just what I need to do to regain my grasp on hope.  We are clinging to the hope that we will have another child to love one day and pray that God will fulfill the desire of our hearts when the time is right.

Friday, March 21, 2014

MOM Brea Part 4: And Then There Were Four

Would you like to catch up with MOM Brea?
Throughout the month of March, Brea has openly shared her story of infertility, angel babies and her miracle Ally who beat the odds.  I asked Brea to tell us about her little miracle, Ally:
"She is all that is good and right in the world.  Her birth was the most beautiful moment of my life.  Today, she is a spunky 2.5-year-old who never ceases to amaze us.  Often shy in unfamiliar situations, she easily shines when comfortable. When she began daycare at 12 months, her caregiver said she's like a 'ray of sunshine'...and all of the other children are instantly happier because she's there.  She's a master negotiator who knows what she wants...I know she's on track to be a leader.  Ally loves reading and story-telling, bikes, stickers, coloring, soccer, making up her own songs, and spending time with her BFF - Daddy."
Brea had been through the unimaginable to become a mommy, yet she immediately knew she wanted to start the journey all over again once she held her sweet Ally in her arms.  Brea and her husband began planning for Baby #2 while their little Ally was still an infant, but decided not to go the route of fertility medications this time.
"...I was too frightened and the path was too daunting.  Instead, when it was determined I was ovulating, I began an aggressive form of acupuncture in order to...increase the length of my luteal phase - which at that time was not long enough to sustain a pregnancy - as well as taking Chinese supplements.  I had my doubts, but I needed this to work.  Before I knew it, my luteal phase went from 8 days to 14 days."
Based on her basal temperature readings, which were "all over the map", during month two of trying to conceive, she assumed she had not ovulated and they would try again next month.  Brea recalls, "I was late, so I took a test early one morning, and low and behold, 2 pink lines immediately appeared."
Brea and her husband welcomed Hudson, her "heart and soul", into their family almost one year ago.
"I love that I'm his world; he's looking for me whenever he's not in my arms.  He has daddy's caring and empathetic eyes, and we've noticed that animals have an undeniable connection to him - another trait he gets from his daddy...He's happiest hanging his head upside down and when Ally tackles him.  He laughs when we touch his hands, and cries when we touch his nose...when the day comes that I no longer get to hold him in my arms to feed him, I will long for those tiny fingers to gently play with my lips, or tickle the underside of my thumb." 

I was honored to host Hudson's Little Gentleman Baby Shower which you can check out HERE.

While not on maternity leave, Brea works with children with special needs within the education system in Canada.  She enjoys reading, traveling and photography.  She is an amazing photographer (see above photo)!!  She makes time at least twice a week to exercise without her children nearby. 

Photo Credit:  Raney Day Photography
"We as mothers know who our personal goals are often put on the back burner to focus on our children and family", says Brea, "and that's how it is for me right now."  Yes!  I think we can all agree with that one. 

Brea shares a long-time passion of hers:  "Fifteen years ago, I learned of domestic sexual slavery through one of my professors. It was then I knew that working with children and youth who were being sexually exploited was what I wanted to do...and was working in the field in a student capacity." She regretfully passed up an opportunity to dive deeper into this work, because it wasn't the right timing.
Brea looks forward to the day when she can "focus on a dream I've had for nearly half my life!" This particular dream is to volunteer with an organization in which she and her husband have been offering financial support, Transitions Global in Cambodia, "an agency that works on restoring the lives of girls rescued from sex trafficking."

Thank you, Brea, for sharing your story and offering encouragement and hope to others!

Monday, March 17, 2014

MOM Brea Part 3: Support and Encouragement Through Loss

If you would like to catch up with MOM Brea's story:
 
To the momma reading this who may have struggled through infertility or pregnancy loss, Brea would like to offer up some words of encouragement for you.
"Pregnancy loss is an isolated club whom no one wants to belong.  Be true to your emotions and honor your feelings.  Everyone who has lost a baby will react differently, but whatever you're feeing in the days, weeks, months, or years after a loss is your truth.  Take the time you need to heal and feel whole again."
A "fantastic" resource Brea recommends is  Sidelines.  Sidelines is a non-profit, high-risk pregnancy support network of trained volunteers who have experienced similar issues. 
 
Maybe you have not personally experienced infertility or loss, but know someone who has.  It certainly has the potential to become the big elephant in the middle of the room, and it can be daunting to find the words of support.  Brea has some suggestions for those who aren't quite sure how to offer support to a loved one in this situation:
"Refrain from passing judgment or offering advice.  Listen to understand, not to reply.  Let your loved one know you support her.  Check in with her.  We felt so lifted up by the overwhelming response to our losses; we received cards, texts, emails, cards, prayers, silent hugs filled with love, and visits from family, friends, and even friends of friends who just wanted to say 'I'm sorry' or 'You're on my mind today'.  Even 3 years later, I'm truly touched when someone remembers how difficult March and April are for me."
Unfortunately, I have been on both the offering and receiving end of support. 
 
I delicately maneuvered around the appropriate gestures while Brea, and many others close to me, marched on through the battle field of infertility.  I have offered up very specific intercessory prayers for friends to have babies before I did (both before my first pregnancy and while we were trying for Baby #2) longing for them to experience the joy and thanksgiving of a little miracle before it happened for us.  And you know what?? Each one of those specific prayers was answered!!  I was blown away by God's faithfulness and love, and overjoyed for those highly anticipated pregnancies. 
 
After I shared my story, I received many private messages and emails from mommas who have been there; who have felt that pain, and understand how confusing it can be to navigate.  My miscarriage is far from what Brea had to endure, and it pales in comparison to the problems of this world and the life-threatening obstacles others battle every day, but it is mine and it will always be a part of who I am.  Don't devalue your grief mommas.
 
 
Near the end of 2013, I came across a book written by a blogger I follow, Natalie Lesnefsky, The Busy Budgeting Mama.  It's called Mommy Has an Angel and she wrote this book after the sudden and violent loss of her best friend to domestic violence.  Natalie wrote the book from a child's innocent perspective blanketed in a beautiful simplicity, because it was her own children's humble prayers that helped her to grieve and heal. 
 
I bought this book as a gift for Brea, and remembered it was tucked away upstairs when I experienced my miscarriage in January.  I dug it out and read it quietly by myself in my bedroom, then read it out loud to my daughter Lucy.  I found comfort in those sweet, colorful pages.
 
If you would like to purchase Mommy has an Angel for yourself, or for a loved one who may be grieving through any type of loss, the book can be purchased HERE.
 

 

 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

MOM Brea Part 2: Angel Babies

Soon after the barrage of infertility tests and procedures were under way, Brea and her husband Cy were ecstatic to find out she was pregnant.   They began dreaming of family life with their little one and Brea remembers how she "fell hard and fast, recognizing how lucky I was".  But then, just about 2 weeks after she found out she was pregnant, Brea was rushed into emergency surgery to remove a 6 week ectopic pregnancy.  "I was devastated and angry with my body for failing me.  This was my miracle and I lost it", explains Brea.
Brea gave her body some time to heal and her and Cy began trying for another baby a few months later.  That December, Brea decided to try her first round of Clomid, a drug designed to help with ovulation (simply put) and she explains how this would be her one and only round of Clomid.
"On Christmas day I found out I was pregnant.  This big fat positive lacked the fanfare of the last test that showed 2 lines.  This wasn't good.  This wasn't bad.  This just was.  We knew I was more likely to have an ectopic pregnancy (than a woman who had not experienced one) and my chances were even slightly more increased because I had taken Clomid."
Brea explains how she struggled with her emotions after discovering she was pregnant. 
"I struggled to keep from dreaming of the baby I was carrying and imagining her life, and ours with her in it.  In order to protect my heart, I had to ignore the early pregnancy symptoms - many of them mirroring those of my only other experience with being pregnant - and keep at the routines of my day to day life."
Brea and Cy arrived to their first ultrasound appointment "filled with anticipation" on January 4, 2011.  It was too early to determine if this pregnancy was also ectopic.  Another ultrasound on January 10th still didn't give them any answers.  Finally, at their ultrasound appointment on February 4, at 9 weeks 3 days gestation, they received some unexpected news. 
"At 9 weeks 3 days, the technician ruled out an ectopic pregnancy, and then invited the radiologist into the exam room.  He turned the screen towards me and pointed out the 2 large black spots with slight grey areas in my uterus.  'Twins', I whispered.  'Not quite', he replied, 'triplets: identical twins and a singleton.' We were shocked, speechless, and terrified.  There was so much to wrap our minds around!  3 babies!"
A few days later, Brea returned to her doctor so he could discuss the risks of her triplet pregnancy.  She was carrying Monochorionic-Monoamniotic identical twins, and a singleton.  "Mono twins" occur when the embryo does not split until after the amniotic sac is formed.  Because they share an amniotic sac (monoamniotic), share a placenta (monochorionic), and have their own umbilical cords, a Mono twin pregnancy is rare and very high risk.  Mono twins occur in 1 in 35,000 to 1 in 60,000 pregnancies, and in about 1% of twin pregnancies. Due to the close proximity of the two umbilical cords in the single amniotic sac, it is easy for the twins to become entangled among the cords, compressing the cords, and limiting their life-giving oxygen and food supply.  The survival rate of Mono twins is about 50%.  Consider in the factor of also carrying a singleton baby, and the risk and rarity of Brea's highly anticipated pregnancy now became an "extremely high-risk" pregnancy.  She was given news of bed rest and the need to stay at the Easter Seals house in Vancouver, B.C. at just 20 weeks to complete the remainder of her pregnancy, because where she lives in Nanaimo isn't equipped to handle such a unique pregnancy. 
"There have been many Mono twin success stories, but not so for Mono twins AND a singleton.  Sadly, the chances of all of our babies surviving were very slim", says Brea.  It was explained to Brea and Cy that if all of her babies did survive, they would be faced with severe life-long disabilities. 
"I sat silently as he stared me directly in the eyes and said 'If you were my daughter or wife, there would be no choice in my mind; the risk for you and them is too great'."  Brea tried to wrap her brain around what the doctor was telling her. 
Brea and Cy's 13-week gestation triplets were already experiencing TTTS (Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome) and experiencing distress and they were aware they could lose all three of their babies at any time.  They were facing two options:
1) Carry on with the pregnancy the way it is and hope all of their babies survive.
2) Terminate the twins to give their sibling a chance at not only surviving, but a thriving life.
"The decision we were left with challenged our beliefs, and required us to examine our moral philosophies as individuals and as a couple. As much as we wanted to believe in miracles, we had to think logically of the risks and be realistic...nearly 3 years of struggling with infertility and loss...could we handle more heartache and to what degree?"
The expectant parents were left heartbroken, inconsolable, and for a time, isolated.  It's a terribly sensitive topic that evokes strong emotions in many, Brea and Cy included. 
"After many, many discussions, lots of tears, and the guidance of doctors and counselors, we decided that we would give our singleton a chance at life.  We can assume not everyone agreed with our decision, but never once did we receive anything but love and prayers.  In fact, we were overwhelmed by the outpouring of support!"
Brea and Cy said goodbye to their twins, Taylor and Cameron, on March 7, 2011.  Brea explains that the selective reduction "was easily the most horrendous experience" of her life, and "unfortunately the procedure was anything but textbook." 
Their singleton did exactly what they had hoped for - thrived and survived!  On September 2, 2011 their little Ally made her entrance into the world to greet them face-to-face and Brea recalls that day, "It's so difficult to put into words what it was like to hold her for the first time; she was the sum of perseverance and pain, loss and love.  I think my first words to her were 'I've been waiting for you for a long time.'"

There isn't a day that goes by that Brea doesn't think of her angel babies, and the decisions she made,  "I wear three angels on a chain around my neck - one for each baby I lost - so they will always be close to my heart."  A friend carved a special memory box for Brea and Cy to keep sonogram pictures, heartbeat printouts, and letters and cards from friends.  On Ally's first birthday, Brea and Cy each wrote letters to their twins, Taylor and Cameron.  "We attached [the letters] to balloons and sent them skywards.  Mine was full of 'thank yous', 'I'm sorries', and 'forgive mes'; it was the closure that I needed."
I cannot even begin to imagine being faced with this situation, and it's impossible to know exactly what choices one would make until it is your reality to live and your decision to make.  My heart will always ache for Brea and Cy and this particular season of their lives and they will always remain in my prayers, especially this time of year as they remember their little ones they never had the chance to meet. 
I know this topic raises the opportunity to spark passionate debate amongst those who hold strong opinions, but this is not the time nor the place for debate and judgment.  This blog is a place for mothers to lift each other up, so let's do just that!
Please stay tuned for Part 3, as Brea offers some encouragement to those who may have been through a similar situation.  Brea will also offer some words of advice for those who have not been there themselves, but may need some guidance in regard to offering support to someone else.
Part 3: Support and Encouragement Through Loss

Monday, March 10, 2014

The Pot-Luck

 Here's the "dish" on my new adventure!
I'm thrilled to announce that I'm the newest addition to the collaborative writing effort over at
The Pot-Luck, a group of writers "bringing tasty treats to the table everyday"! About once a month, I will be contributing something new and fresh to The Pot-Luck, apart from what you can find on Momster Mash.  Because I stick to particular topic each month here, The Pot-Luck will give me a new avenue to share my random thoughts and targeted encouragement with even more people. 
 
Apart from giving those who find enjoyment in writing a new platform to do so, the goal of The Pot-Luck is "to find greater understanding of how communities can grow and collaborate to make a difference in people’s lives." 
 
You can read my first post, entitled Journey, HERE
 
You can also find The Pot-Luck on Facebook.
 
I invite you to follow along!
 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

MOM Brea Part 1: The Diagnosis

I recently shared my personal story of miscarriage, and commented on how I have painfully watched far too many friends navigate through infertility and miscarriage.  My dear friend Brea is just one of those friends whom openly shared her journey while still on that painful path.  I understand that many choose to not talk about their experience for personal reasons, and I value their decision.  It is my personal belief that sharing and talking about these experiences, especially with others who have been there and can truly empathize, can be just one path to healing; a way to purge bottled-up emotions with which we don't know what to do.
Brea has been through far more than I, and my heart still aches for her and this specific time in her life.  She has agreed to share her experiences with all of you Momsters, and Brea and I both hope that her story can help bring healing and community to those who have walked this path themselves, and compassion to those who know someone who has.
*          *          *
Let's start from the beginning...

Brea and her husband Cy met on Match.com in 2005 as a result of a dare.  Brea's friend "dared" her to set up a free 3-day trial, and it only took that long for Cy to find Brea and send her a message.  She wasn't taking this online dating too seriously, but explains how Cy's message stood out from the others she had received in those few days.  "...his was respectful and humble, so I went ahead and added him to MSN messenger.  We 'chatted' through MSN for hours, eventually graduating to the phone, and then finally meeting in Victoria B.C. several weeks later."

It's important to mention that Cy lived in Kirkland, WA, and Brea resided in Nanaimo, B.C., a 2.5-hour drive, a border crossing, and a 2-hour ferry ride away; not a quick trip across town.  Cy had been a Match.com "veteran" for some time already, when a crucial piece of this part of their story unfolded.  He made the decision to expand his profile search range...to Canada! 

Their meeting in person set off a romantic snowball that grew quickly to Cy promising he was going to marry Brea one day.  Brea laughed it off, but explains that "a year to the day we 'met' online, as we lounged in a hammock on the island of Kauai, he asked me to be his wife.  I, of course, said yes, and 9 months later we were married." 

My husband was already friends with Cy, through the saltwater aquarium hobby, and this is how I met Brea.  We attended their gorgeous cocktail party wedding and our friendship with the two has continued to grow over the years.
Brea and Cy on their wedding day, February 24, 2007
Like many newlyweds, there were a few things Brea and Cy wanted to do before they had children, but decided to "forgo birth control" and be ok with Brea getting pregnant if that happened before they were able to check off their pre-children bucket list.  The item topping their list was traveling around Europe, and that dream came true 2.5 years after they were married.  Brea had not become pregnant by this point, but didn't think much of it until after they returned home from their trip and actively began trying to conceive in August 2009.  Brea recalls when their journey to become parents began to take an unexpected path:
"It wasn't until later that year, while at a doctor's appointment (unrelated to conception and pregnancy) that [the doctor] asked me if Cy and I were going to have children.  As it turns out, that appointment changed the course of my life, and ultimately lead to an unexplained infertility diagnosis."
Having just turned 30, Brea was faced with the possibility that she may never have children of her own, and it was then that she truly realized just how much she longed to be a mother and how "desperately" she wanted children of her own.

 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Raney Day Photography Photo Session WINNER!!

We have a winner of the Raney Day Photography photo session giveaway (a $300 value)!!
 
* * Natalie A. * *
 
 
Congratulations Natalie!!!!  I'm so excited for you and your family and the beautiful pictures you're going to get from Jessica Raney.  You are going to have a great time.
 
Thank you to everyone who entered, and a HUGE thank you to February's MOM Jessica for sharing your inspiring story of chasing and achieving dreams and for your generous giveaway. 

 
Didn't win?  I think you should still book a session with the amazingly talented Jessica!  I'm personally so looking forward to my family's photo session scheduled for May.  Visit Jessica's website www.RaneyDayPhotography.com for more information and to book your session; I promise you won't regret it!
 
Check back tomorrow as I introduce the Momster of the Month for March.