Seaside, Nov. 14

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

How Time Flies

As we bust through winter with sloth-like speed, we are encountering a new family season.  Zeke is now 6 months old.  I cannot believe that it has been so long, but feels so short.  In the last months Zeke has learned to roll over -- from front to back and back to front.  He makes us laugh with his preference of choosing the harder skills, like rolling from back to front, and deciding that there is only one correct way to roll . . . and that is right :)  His personality is blooming daily while we cannot seem to find enough bibs to entirely soak up his drool.  Recently, as began fussing on his tummy (because he has refused to roll from back to front) I decidedly helped him roll over and found that my hand and arm were covered in drool.  That day I found out that he enjoys consuming his hand and arm :)

He's also growing like a weed.  I've had to put away all his 0-3 month clothing, some of his 3-6 depending on size, and breaking into the 6-9.  He's not up to speed with his same age  counterparts in height, but I'm not too concerned about that :)  At the doctors he weighed in at 14 pounds but his height and head measurements weren't taken . . . 6 month checkup to come soon.

Solids seems to beckon his attention.  Frequently when Mike and I are eating, we sense that "someone's looking at me" feeling only to look over and see Zeke staring with intense desire.  He watches the spoon carefully and seems to be downloading the mechanics of eating.  Unfortunately, he still has his extrusion reflex -- sticking out his tongue to eat -- and can't quite get the hang of swallowing just yet.  I can only imagine that that boy will be eating us out of house and home too soon!

Work seems to be going quite well for Mike.  He is always busy and frequently seems to have extra.  We are so blessed to feel secure in such rocky economic times.  Just today, he is headed to the coast to check out a job in Newport and texted me a picture during his lunch break.  It was so beautiful I was a bit jealous :(

"Work" is going well for me as well.  Three days a week I watch Abbi.  Before I go any further, we've got SUPER news!


The last couple weeks have been filled with box packing whenever we have a spare moment.  And although we felt somewhat good to move, there are always so many extras.  We planned our move well and this week has been dedicated to moving the small things.  Hopefully we will be done very soon.  I don't much care for the preparation of moving, but I die for the ability to put away our stuff into all the new places.  It does seem to be box after box (which means we really should donate much of our . . . junk . . . to Goodwill), but soon enough our new place will feel more like home.  It already does.

The neat part?  We are living with some good friends of ours . . . Abbi's parents!  So their commute, and my preparation time are slim to none :)  There will definitely be some roommate issues, but we've already got a plan to deal with them!  I'm just so excited because of the place.  Check out this link to view our home -- without all our stuff in it.  I'll try to post more pictures once it's not ruled by boxes and junk.

So back to Abbi . . . she is quite a cutie-pie and Zeke is starting to notice too.  She is in the stage where she only wants what others have, so there might be a floor full of toys, but she wants the one Zeke is playing with.  He still has reflux, although not quite as bad, but when he's in the bouncy seat (which used to be Abbi's), she'll walk over and want to "bounce" him and "gently" touch him.  Eventually, this leads to her trying to whop him on the head and redirection is only so good :)

I am doing well considering.  Days seem to fly by during my exhaustion while I try so hard to have enough energy to keep both kids challenged and occupied.  During nap times, if they are asleep at the same time, I try to put away boxes.  I'm quickly noticing that the kitchen seems like the most fun.  Because of our move, we've eaten out so much I'm sick of it.  Hopefully soon, I'll be cooking away.  The new house also has a backyard that my friend and new roommate Tonya are drooling over.  There is enough space to put in a garden and we're already planning on putting in a backyard.  It'll take some elbow grease, but we've got gloves ready :)

No pictures this time, but hopefully more soon.  We need to be better at documenting our little one's life :)

Monday, January 10, 2011

This week marked a new start for me.  I have always wanted to stay at home with my children and become a talented housewife.  These are the core years to teach my children about God, life, and education in the world’s terms.  Although Mike and I have paved a fairly good road until this point for me to do this, we are still slightly short and need to make some extra money. 
God had a perfect idea for us.  One of my friends recently had a baby girl (7 mos) and she wanted to know that her little one was being cared for.  In our area, finding reasonable childcare is quite difficult.  And when you can find a reasonable price, there is typically something a bit off about the provider.  She conveyed to me how one provider informed them that the television was left on all day--without skipping a beat, like it was normal, one had dicey moral artwork on the wall, and one let her young daughter watch the children at times.  Hmm, not the information a mother wants to hear.  So our two families created a plan for me to watch her.  
During the days that she is here, she and Zeke have wonderful and detailed staring contests with each other.  I can just see the thoughts flying through their heads.  Plus, I am able to stay with my son and teach him.  Too cool.
Mike also had a fairly good week.  One day he came home so excited . . . Maybe even a bit more than Christmas.  Upon walking through the door he exclaimed, “I got to see a waterbed roof today!”  I was quite perplexed by what he meant.  He then explained how a client called him up in a panic asking for him to come out immediately.  Mike is quite flexible and although most issues aren’t immediate, he adjusted his schedule to go.
Upon reaching the client’s roof, he began walking around to find the difficulty.  Fairly soon he stepped on the roof and felt like he was going to fall through because the roof was so soft.  He subsequently figured out that there was a 4’ x 4’ section of roof filled with 4 ins of water beneath the roof!  When he stepped on the surface, the supposed-to-be-solid roof rose and fell like water at sea. Needless to say, Mike needed to make some phone calls to make sure this man still had a place to live.
Mike was also able to head out to the mountain (Mt. Hood), White River Snow Park to be exact, for Search and Rescue.  We call it SAR for short.  This week’s mission was for the trainers to hike back into the woods and find a place to “get lost”.  Next week they are staging a mock rescue and Mike “gets to” get cold and act drunk for the other SAR volunteers.  He is very excited that he can use his skills for some good.  
The story of the day there was how one of his volunteer trainers thought it might be a good and funny idea to drink a swoosh of alcohol and then spray some on himself to make the situation realistic.  Mike was thinking a bit more globally and responded, “Yeah.  And when the cop pulls me over on the way home . . .”  He didn’t even have to finish before his team members had a good chuckle.
On the home front, Zeke is growing well.  Friday we were able to see the doctor who gave us quite a bit of information.  Typically when an infant is born early, doctors adjust the percentage charts back to their due date.  For example, because Zeke was 5 weeks early, we wouldn’t consider him to be 3 months (which he actually is), we would consider him to be 2 months (adjusted for the “gestational age”).  When he showed us the charts and how Zeke measured up, we all had a good laugh.  Even without any adjustments, our little tyke seems to meet the normal percentages.  It comes from the Drexler side :)  We’ve gotten so many comments about his feet size and “wow” looks when we tell people his age.  We love it!
He is also beginning to imitate our faces!  Mike and I are having a hoot of a time staring at him, smiling, and watching him smile back.  Although it takes a while for him to understand the game we are playing, it is well worth our time.  First he looks concerned and like he is contemplating how to imitate that face, and then slowly, his smile begins to creep in.  Small at first, and then so large his cutie pie dimples show.  God is just too good!  We are also working on sticking out his tongue and trying to act excited, but that just results in a confused face from Zeke.

I can’t wait to share new stories with you, but I think that might also mean a bit more mayhem for me.  Ah well.  I knew what I was in for from the beginning :)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Christmas Season

We were pleasantly surprised on December 23rd, leaving too late, we didn’t encounter much traffic. The drive went quite smoothly even with little Zeke needing a feed partway through. It’s become quite interesting for me to nurse in awkward places. This time it was in the dark at a gas station a bit off the road. Unfortunately, it was quite chilly and lil man had to get changed in super chilly weather. He wasn’t too happy about that.

Finally we reached the Drexler’s house in Kent and were only too happy to hit the hay. Zeke needed to feed and I was trying just as hard to keep my lids open long enough for him to eat. Grandma, Grandpa, Uncle Jason, and Aunt Julie were all truly happy to see him.

I was happy to watch family spread the love on the little guy. Although he doesn’t get to see them too often, he seemed quite mellow while staring into all these “new” people’s eyes. Recently he’s been quite the detail man. Watching with eyes wide open he’ll track objects with distinct colors until his head won’t turn any more. This made Christmas quite entertaining for him as most people he saw wore bright reds and greens.

We were able to stay with the Drexlers for two days and visiting was wonderful. Jason and Julie had come from Ohio to visit for the season and it was only too sweet for us to see them again after a year of phone chats. Wendy was a gracious host and Grandma--as always :) while Wayne was only too happy to take Zeke off our hands. Zeke was only too happy to let the joy be spread around.

Late on the 24th Mike and I headed out to Battleground to visit the Mitchell’s. Around halfway there we received a phone call from Connie wanting to know how close we were. The Mitchell’s have a time-honored tradition of opening a present on New Years Eve. As little girls, Melissa and I always wanted the big one, or the one we thought was from our list. We came to understand that it was the little teaser we could open. Connie was only too eager for us to arrive.

So at 10:00 pm, Mike, Zeke and I strolled in the door, said our hellos, and we went straight to the tree for Christmas Eve’s present goodies. Again, Mike and I were only too happy to lay down our heads. Zeke is still on his own schedule, so he didn’t care when we slept. He’d let us know when he needed something.

Christmas morning came quickly and the Grandparent's seemed like the first to wake. As noises of morning routines began to fill the house, our excitement rose . . . as much as two people with no sleep can. Grand Mitchell’s, the Strong’s--Aaron, Melissa, and niece Zoe, and us settled in for the present opening fiesta.

Many smiles were exchanged and I think my favorite of the day was my father. Connie began our present charade by opening a present she had given to herself. My dad followed by asking her what it was and her response was “honey, you got it for me.” Of course, she had bought it for herself. Cute, Mom. And then after all the presents had been opened, there was a slight pause in the air. Dad broke the silence by excitedly announced as he read the “tag”, “To Dad . . . From Dad”, and pulled out a golf club with a grin only matched by children. All of us chuckled right along with him.

These are some pictures, the rest are at

Kicking off the New Year!

Mike and I are jumping in with all “those other people” making weight loss goals for the new year. We have been chatting about needing to act for so long that our tummy tires have rounded out. Mike is going to give Power 90 a try, while I am hooked by Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. I’ve already begun the monotonous routine of turning on the TV, watching the pre-show I’ve watched too many other times, only to wait too long for the whiplash of no breaks and “encouragement” that we need to work this hard. If you ask me, the FBI warning is just a bit too long to think twice about waiting to sweat!

Somehow, I have to make sure that the little guy is actually sleeping before I get ready. Sometimes by the time I believe that he is actually down for a nap, it’s too late and I’ve just gotten into the warm up. I guess the warm up is better than nothing :)

We’re very excited with little Zeke’s progress. We weighed him the other day and he has doubled his birthweight--quite a feat for a preemie. He seems to be eating and sleeping well, even though the good sleep is during the day. He is so long now that he’s grown out of his newborn clothes and entered the 0-3 closet. We don’t think he’ll be there too long as some of the clothing is already looking a bit short . . . one reason Mike and I won’t be investing too much in clothing. It’s not to savvy to buy really cute outfits that look really cute on the hanger, but don’t fit the kid :)

The most exciting part of his development seems to be relational. Although he was smiling from birth, he now seems to be imitating people’s smiles and producing some of his own. His new found ability melts my heart. I am so deeply touched with him and what he means to me that I find myself uncontrollably smiling while also shedding happy tears. When I do this and am looking at Zeke, he smiles with me and then stops. It seems to me like he’s not quite sure how to “do that face”.

All in all, we had a good holiday season and look forward to writing new history into our Drexler family.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Long Lost Friend

So it's been a while.

Last time I posted, my life was a bit different. I find a new normal emerging nearly every day and am discovering why God's influence is so imperative to life.

As I speak, I've got another little guy poking at my tummy with Daddy's joking intensity. Just yesterday he gave me a kick that sent me jolting. I'm glad that God has sent me an active Jr. so I am not as impatient and anxious. Although I am still encountering an anxiety tug-of-war with Jr's health, I find my patience and ability to stay calm is much better than I thought it might be.

As time goes on, my belly is getting larger and larger. Yes, due to Jr's impeccable size, but also because I am seeming to gain weight like a boat takes on water . . . quickly, and always to the wrong areas! I am trying to maintain a healthy weight, but feel as though it is a losing battle.

I also find myself running an uphill battle frequently as all my paths lead to some kind of problem in need of solving. How can I be better is a question I am constantly asking.

With some additional input, I am coming to recognize my personality and its benefits and drawbacks. I am a person who appreciates order. If that order is disturbed, I become hopelessly depressive, however, if it is in place, and all is functioning within its structure, I become spontaneous and adventuresome. I feel as though I am leaning, and have always leaned, toward one end of the spectrum.

I wonder, what kind of order or structure do I need that I've been lacking for years??? Maybe it's God. Hmm, yeah. That sounds kind of . . . logical. Go figure.

Well, with Jr. on the way, I better come to grips with life really quickly. Hmm, how to relax with a living room full of books and junk.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Hello? Anyone there?

Hmmm, so March 5th. So many things have changed since then and its crazy to think that the last time I sat here and did this was months ago.

March 5th:
I was deep in the muck and mire of another UC flare which I have come to know is severe.
I had no energy and the couch and I were really good friends.
My car had just died out on me and we weren't sure what to do with it.
I needed a proceedure and we weren't sure how to pay for it.
. . . and . . . and . . . and

Now life seems like a runaway train. The engine seems to keep the coal shoved in and the caboose is struggling to stay attached as it waves back and forth, tipping from side to side on the tracks as onlookers flee in panic.

About two weeks ago, I went in for a procedure known as a Flexible Sigmoidoscopy. Those of you familiar with a Colonoscopy pretty much know this procedure. A "Flex" as I like to call it--makes conversation a bunch easier--is a Colonoscopy, the doctor just doesn't go as far up your colon. Many people are afraid of this procedure. I love it, although I'm not too happy about why I'm enduring it. First, I have to be poked with a gigantoid needle (okay, maybe I'm a bit shy of metal being shoved into a protected vein) that delivers "saline solution" into my system. Quite frankly I loved it this time because of the prep. I wasn't able to have anything by mouth for the 4 hours prior to the proceedure and was required to finish the "lovely mineral water taste"-ing prep solution 6 hours prior to the proceedure. My proceedure was at noon. The math meant that I was waterless from 8 to 12! For those of you who know how much water I drink, that's EONS!! By the time I wabbled in to the room, I was requesting as many electrolytes as they could shove in me. Lightheadedness directed my path and I was all to excited to get the Flex over with.

While in the procedure room, they gave me "fun drugs" which made me dizzy. Not the kind of dizzy that makes your knees buckle on the bridge and cling to the nearest handrail while heaving over the edge, but the kind of dizzy that is fun. As I lay there, I could see the machine telling me what my blood pressure was, and . . . all the other numbers. When my doctor gave me the fun drugs, the numbers started slow dancing with each other, but my head was still on the pillow.

DON'T READ if you're sqeamish

Here's the cool part (and could be not-so-fun part). I am laying on my left side looking at the screen the doctor looks at and I get to see my colon and intestine! Because I'm a bit dizzy, it looks weird. It seemed like my intestine were discolored, in the brown-ish, off-colored way . . . instead of healthy pink with veins. I didn't see much, but then again, I can't say my eyes were in the best of working conditions either :)

START HERE if you skipped
Then, she slammed me with the news. I was diagnosed with moderate to severe UC, but on my paperwork, it was severe. She then told me she was putting me on a potent drug--one I never thought I'd be on, and walked away.

I'm finding it quite difficult to deal with people who aren't willing to talk with me about what's going on with my body. A change is definitely in store.

Because of the results, my life has been rocked.

This drug effects pregnancy, BIG TIME. That means we can't even try to conceive. It wouldn't be too great an idea now anyway because the Flex drained us financially. The drug seems to be effecting me, but I still can't nail down how. The last couple days I've been in PMS land for no reason. I've felt like its the end of the world, and I also don't have any energy. I'm just licked!

Mike has been in the dumps too and he said such an amazing thing to me the other night, but I have to lead in to it.

Because of my emotional earthquake, I've really been leaning on him for support and leadership. He, however, is also quite drained. I basically unloaded my tears on him and part way through our conversation when I said, "I really need your support right now", he responded, "It's hard to give support when we're both spent." Not the same words, but you get the idea.

How true is this? When I'm spent, and he's spent, there really is no energy between the two of us to give support. So now is when we are so dependent on God. All we can do is cling to each other and hope that the last 4 years of our marriage will not be indicative of the rest of our lives. We can only hope for God's intervention.

Meanwhile, the apartment is still "home" and life still goes on. I am doing a fairly good job keeping up with my goals of reading the Bible (now in 1 Sam, but should be somewhere in Psalms), keeping the house clean, and keeping up with myself.

While writing this, I feel like it might be hard to follow. If that's true, just know that its my meds talking :( Clarity is unfortunately, something I've lacked since the procedure.

The only thing I feel I can hold on to is God's promise to us, and a life much different from that we are living now.

More to come later.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


Wow, almost 4 and feels like midnight. The last weeks have been spiraling so fast. While our schedule has hit sonic speeds, there are some consistencies that I appreciate!

For the last week, as of today, Mike and I have been KILLING our muscles at insane hours. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, we wake up before God pulls up the sun, and sleepily put on our clothes hoping to remember everything we need. At a bright 5:45 we are geared to start sweating.

This is a HUGE change for both of us. The typical morning consists of the alarm going off, one, two, or MANY MORE times screaming at Mike to get up. Of course, we all know that the consistency of the alarm breaks our desire to snooze. So whether or not we want to, getting up is the only choice. Then, we rush to get everything together to get Mike out the door -which sometimes is quite a feat. After the mass exodus - of one person :)-the whirlwind of adrenaline has peaked and is now plummeting towards the center of the earth at cheetah speeds. My brain is hoping to connect and keep a thought process, but ends up crashing in brilliant colors.

Now, instead of being alarmed (double meaning meant, and enjoyed by me as I like plays on words!), we "wake up" once and get ready to meet the chilly morning. By the time we get there, we are "ready" to go and begin with lunges and other warm-up exercises. We are sweating in no time at all. And man can I tell you that this routine is so good. Of course in the process, my exhaustion is telling me QUIT! Oooooo, the burning of muscles, paired with non-endurance and stench . . . gotta love it :)

I love the residual effects. Just as we thought, our muscles are feeling a bit used, and Mike and I are beginning to laugh at ourselves. Things like his feet don't fit in the TRX handles because he's huge! TRX straps hang from the built-in "Monkey Bars" (just like when we were kids) and basically suspend either your feet or hands above you to add a crazy hard, core strengthening to any exercise. Figure this, push ups with your feet swinging left to right because they're not on solid ground, or reverse abs in the push up position with the same swinging. Hard, but afterward, Mike and I are happy with the lingering burn and tightening of abs. You see, I have a six pack, it's just hidden by insulation.

The hardest part I feel is not the effect of exercising, its the sleep! Yo-yoing between 5:00 mornings and recouping the other days isn't good. I haven't yet been able to wake up on Tuesday or Thursday feeling rested. Maybe one day soon, I'll just go to sleep, and then wake up. Sounds so simple doesn't it . . . but I'm guessing that most of us can relate. There are a few more go-to-sleep, wake-up patterns before the sun rises and I'm actually supposed to get up!

Well, gotta run because I'm off to another session. Soon, I'll be less of me and I can't wait!