Sunday, 8 April 2012

Happy Easter from Cali!

Happy Easter! He is Risen!

I love Easter. I especially love it now that I have a kid. This year was so much more fun then last year because he was able to be excited about things, say everything, and just be so much more involved. Our Easter celebrations really started on Friday in Daycare where we had an Easter Party that included dyeing and hunting eggs. It was too much fun. Jon and Kassie (brother-in-law and sister-in-law) came to visit for the week, bringing their one year old boy, Levi, so they were here for the rest of our celebrations. On Saturday the Daddies dyed eggs with their boys. Noah did so well. He loved it. EVERY.BIT.OF.IT! 

Showing off his eggs! 

On Sunday morning I woke up and made everyone Easter Pancakes. I put a peep inside each pancake and the marshmallow melted... they said it made it yummy. Of course I did not eat any of it since I am trying to get this weight off. Below you can see the final product... don't judge, it was my first time! :) I was happy with them... Noah was obviously happy too. 

I like my little Peep Pancakes

Noah loved how it looked- but did not eat it! :) 

After breakfast we pulled out the Easter Baskets. It seemed my newsfeed on Facebook was filled with the Easter Baskets on Saturday night.... and to be honest, I was SHOCKED! So many Easter Baskets had items in there that made it seem so much more like Christmas or a Birthday! I was happy with my Target $1 Bin items, and I know my boy was too! When did kids start getting full out gifts for Easter? Noah enjoyed all of his different items... and I told him that Jesus brought them for him... :) Love him. 

I purchased one of these toys that he is holding for him and
his cousin who is here. Before we got to church MY boy had
already popped both of them! 

After we did our Easter Baskets we let the kids search for the small chocolate eggs that I hid around the living room. They loved it. They had so much fun looking... and could not get enough of it. I love watching the joy that was all over my boys face... every time he found a new one. Lucky for him his cousin wasn't really too interested in all of the candy, but he was!! 

One small chocolate egg that was out of reach! 

Then we got ready for church. What a blessed day we had a church. I really enjoy church services when I leave feeling like I got something out of it. I know that God was there today and I was able to really feel his presence. When we got home we put the two little boys to sleep and started working on lunch. We went the easy route today... We grilled. On our menu was: Steaks, Mashed Potatoes, Grilled Corn on the Cob, Grilled Asparagus, and Deviled Eggs! It was great! 

Our deviled Easter Eggs

Then of course we had dessert. I made vanilla cupcakes with a Reeses PB in the middle. I had made homemade icing as well- but it didn't turn out so we didn't put any on. I really didn't care! :) None of us are huge sweets fans... so It wasn't a big deal! 

My lacking icing cupcakes

After lunch we searched for Easter Eggs. It was so fun. As I ran around taking pictures, the in-laws were trying their darndest to get their little one to care about getting the eggs. The husband was having a good time with the boy-- searching for eggs together. They all had so much fun. I was so blessed as I was reminded how lucky I am to have these boys in my life. After the Egg Hunt we stayed outside and played in the sprinkler. It was an amazing day. 

My boys...


Easter is amazing... and beyond everything we did today, I kept remembering what Christ did for me. As my boy gets older, I want to make sure to instill in him what Easter is all about. I am blessed.

My cup runneth over. 

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

I Remember

Twenty-four months ago, plus some days, I gave birth to the most precious baby boy. I NEVER realized that becoming a mother would change who I am so much. I remember finding out I was pregnant and it was just so surreal. I remember Nate not believing it. I remember calling my friend, Kim, to tell her that we wanted to come down- maybe I said I needed to talk to her? I am not sure how it came about. I remember walking into her house and seeing her and Jason. If my memory serves me correctly I think I put the pregnancy test down to let her see it without saying anything. Kim, do you remember that day? I remember that I told Kim before my other friend. I remember calling the other friend and telling her and of course she came. I remember Nate and Jason went golfing, as if our lives were the same that they were 24 hours ago. I remember my friends going with me to get the official test done at the clinic. I remember skyping with my mom. Britt were you there? How did I tell you? Did I Skype with you? I vaguely think I did??? I remember calling my brother and him not believing me, yet being so excited. I remember Kim, Abbey, and I hanging out all day in Kim's house- talking baby. I remember looking at my pregnant best friend realizing one of my dreams was coming true- bring pregnant with a best friend. I remember waiting... waiting for the clinic to call me and confirm that I was indeed pregnant. I remember Abbey getting a hold of Ryan- was he at work? I remember him being shocked. I remember Nate and Jason walking through the door from golfing and Nate just looking at me and me nodding my head. I remember he wouldn't truly 'believe' it until the DR. confirmed it. I remember. 

I remember how much I loved being pregnant. How much I loved that pregnant belly. The joy it brought me. I remember one of the few times I got sick and it was on the way back to North Area in Japan- Kim and I had went to get Popeyes for our families. I remember as we waited for our order to be ready how I guzzled sweet tea... and then filled it up again. I remember opening her van door on the ride home (5 minutes maybe) and throwing up like three times. HAHA! Stupid sweet tea. I remember everything. I remember enjoying every moment. The last few weeks were the hardest on my body. I was so swollen and honestly just so ready to meet my boy. I remember being in the hospital with Kim as she was laboring with Allie. I remember wondering why the DR. was NOT in there! My friend was crying in pain! :) I remember listening to Kim cry and scream as Abbey kept hacking up her lungs and I kept telling Abbey to be quiet or go somewhere else because I had to hear this! :) She didn't take it personal... I remember thinking this was going to be me and I could not wait. I remember hearing Allie cry for the first time, seeing my best friend, holding that baby girl who would become Noah's best friend. I remember.

I remember knocking on Abbey and Ryan's door to see if Abbey would go to the hospital with me.. Nate had dropped me off there to go bowling.. but I had to use the bathroom so bad. So I used the one down stairs... I remember there was blood. So I quickly went to Abbey's door- no answer. I called, several times, no answer. I remember walking to the bowling alley, 9+ months pregnant, in the snow... to get Nate to take me. I remember not calling Kim because I am too prideful and didn't think it was really it. I remember how I didn't want to tell anyone until I knew it was true. I remember telling Nate it was nothing, to drop me off to be checked, and I will call him. I remember the nurse telling me they were keeping me because of blood pressure. I remember Abbey and Kim calling me.... annoyed/upset with me that I had not called Kim! Nate had gotten in touch with Abbey who got in touch with Kim. That is who we were back then... it was good. I remember Nate calling and telling him I was going to be going home soon.... I wanted him to finish his game. I knew that Noah was not coming anytime soon. He was hosting Japanese nationals, had been all week, and they were doing a bowling function- I did not want him to miss out. I remember him calling again.... and I then told him that yes, we would be having this baby boy. I remember him coming. I remember Ryan and Abbey going to my house to get the stuff that of course had been packed for weeks. I remember them taking care of Dezi as we were in the hospital. 

I remember my friends. All four of them being there. Ryan, Abbey, Jason, Kim. All of them. They were there. I know that if Kim and Jason had not had a baby at the time, that Jason would have stayed there to. That is who we were. I remember the next day, Sunday. My friends were there. I remember Nate and Ryan playing cards in the corner while my best friends took care of me. I will always, always love these girls for that. I remember that day so much. I remember when we had to make that hard choice to go forward with the decision to have a C-Section that my friends hurt for me. I know they did. They knew how bad I wanted to try to do this alone... no meds. I remember my friends taking care of switching our stuff to the new room. I remember everything that goes along with the CSection. I remember my friends being there, waiting for us, as I was wheeled to that room. I remember my friends still being there, TIRED, so they could see me meet my baby boy for the first time. I remember how they held him. How happy I was to have them. I remember. 

I am so blessed. God knew who needed to be in my life during that season. I will never understand why He takes people out of our lives, but I know that His reasoning serves a higher purpose than I will ever understand. I am so thankful to have loved all of these people, even if only for a while. 

My boy. He is so full of energy. He loves to learn. He is an artist, like his Uncle Shane. :) He is a neat freak, like his Daddy. He is so fun. He is so smart. Every.Single.Day he amazes me. I love him. I love his independence and his dependence on me, his mommy. I love how he says my name. I love him. I love how he gets excited to see his Daddy when he comes home from work. I love how he gets excited to see me after one hour of being away from me. I love how he loves Dezi. I love how he knows who Gammy, TawTaw, BrittBritt, and Gell are. I love this boy.

It wouldn't matter if someone had told me how great being a mom was- I am sure they did... you never can truly understand what it means until you are a mom. I have learned that. I am sooooo happy that God has blessed me and allows me to stay home with my  boy now. I love staying home. I love teaching him and watching him learn. Yet, he teaches me. 

This sweet kid. He teaches me to be a better person, to be more energetic, not to worry about the small stuff, to have more patience, to have more fun, to laugh more, to want to learn. He teaches me. 

Becoming a mommy was natural to me and I am so thankful.

As I see so many people having babies or announcing their pregnancy... I think about how I Can't wait until the Lord decides to bless us with another baby. My boy will be the best big brother. Just like my brother was. As I sit here looking at my boy during nap time I am brought to tears because of the love I have for him... and in the same breath my heart hurts because my brother will never know him. 

All this to say:

I can't wait to have that pregnant belly again!! 

(WOW! I finally said it)

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Almost 2

I can't believe my baby boy is almost two years old. I can't believe he is a TODDLER! I have been thinking about the day he was born so much lately...sometimes I wish I could go back to that day. The only thing I would have done differently would be to have my mom, sister, and brother there with me. But that day, during the most life changing moment of my life-- I had my other family surrounding me. I was so blessed to have all of my best friends around.... I miss those guys!

As I continue to think about that day... I will continue to smile about how amazing my child is.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Other BIIIIG News!

Thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway. We had 31 people participate and because of the multiple entries that were allowed, there were 112 entries. I took a picture of the answer on but it won't upload. So, I hope you trust me on it. Before we reveal the winner I would like to share some news.

In the coming week Natural-Nurturer and Natural-Nester will be merging to create one blog. It is a very exciting time. We will be able to work together to bring you all of the awesome ideas that we have. We will be merging to Natural-Nester's blog. We have many of the same followers, but those of you that don't follow her blog, please go on over and join it so you can keep up with us. We will be changing the name to Natural NesterS! It fits us both so much.

We are not only sisters but we are best friends and we are so excited about this step in our blogging life! We hope that you will continue to support us. Joining together like this will allow us to offer many more giveaways for you!

But what you have all be waiting for.... The winner of the Lequip Professional Stick Blender with all of the attachments, from Nutrition Lifestyles.... is Number 39!

Kim DeMoss

Thank you Nutrition Lifestyles for partnering with us for this amazing giveaway. We hope to do this again in the future!! 

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Ms. Pig got a makeover!

Nine years ago I was in my balancing college life, working full-time, and planning for my wedding. Nate was in Hawaii with friends working... and doing ZERO wedding planning, haha! Between work and class I didn't have much extra time. So, all of the time that I did have I usually spent in my dorm room, online, finding nice- CHEAP- ideas! I can't believe it is almost 9 years ago that I married this boy.

Our family pig joined us almost 9 years ago too. She has been wonderful. She is world traveled and used by many. She has lived in Texas, Mississippi, JAPAN, and now California. She is still as healthy as ever. But the husband decided it was definitely time for a makeover. Her hair had started to fade, so like any awesome woman-- she needed to go in to have her hair fixed.


First the husband use a special tool (my word for I don't know which one) to take off the existing paint.  No worries, TawTaw (the awesome ARTIST of The Pig)... she didn't look as bad as the above picture portrays. 

Then the man got right to work! First was dying her hair black, I mean- that is what is in style these days with a lot of girls- right? Or at least it was in style in my neck o' the woods last time I visited.  

Next he gave her some white highlights. Don't you know that the gals that dye their hair black usually add some additional color? Well Ms. Pig wanted the same special care! 

Next she had her favorite procedure done: Getting her eye make-up put on to last FOREVER! Who wouldn't like this!!! Amazing- never have to do your make-up again! Sign me up, please! :)

Daddy took really good care of Ms. Pig.

She came out beautiful and ready to go! She is excited for the next 9 years with us! 

This pig has brought joy to many... :) We can only thank our very own TawTaw (my step-dad) for this wonderful creation. If you asked me what we got for our wedding... there are only three things that I could tell you that I remember from the top of my head.. and Ms. Pig of course would be #1. 

*If you have black hair with highlights, I wasn't saying bad things about you... just trying to make the post fun*

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Making Playdough!!!

Every kid loves playdough! We decided to make our own in daycare! What is better than playdough? 


Cream of Tarter
Pack of Cool Aid

Mix together all dry ingredients!
Mix the water and oil too!

Put on the stove and slowly pour the water/oil mixture in.

Heat and stir until it is all mixed together. This took about 2-3 minutes.

Then it says to put on a surface and knead it for a few minutes. 
I, however, used my Bosch Mixer that I bought from Nutrition Lifestyles to knead it for me! 

See how easy it was! Now all I have to do is let it cool until the kids can play with it. Took like 2 minutes! 

Rooster Head's handprint!

He loved it! 

I love him! He had so much fun. 

He wanted to build a snowman! 

Rolling it out with his own personal rolling pin! 

Feeding Mr. Piggy the playdough!

We had so much fun. The kids loooooved it. They played for at least 30 minutes. The best part is that if you keep it in a sealed container, it stays good for up to six months! That is AWESOME! AND if the baby decides to eat it... like babies do... all he gets is some VERY, VERY salty flour! 

Yes, I tasted it! 

Have fun making playdough with your kids!


Hey you, YES YOU, Don't forget about our GIVEAWAY! You have until Friday night to enter!! Come on, it is FREEEEE! 

I am a food addict.

*This was written last night, Jan. 16, but I have debated about actually posting it*

Hi, my name is Cassey and I am a recovering food addict. Seriously.

I have struggled my whole life with being the overweight gal. I have tried every fad diet out there and I have lost a little weight here and there, but mostly, I put it right back on. I think I am just use to being the fat girl that I put on a happy smile to mask the pain I am in being the big girl. Is there anyone out there that understands that? I am sure there are many of you that can totally understand!!! 

I was successful once.

2007. I had graduated college and had my first teaching job... and I did not want to be the fat teacher. I wanted to look good. Heck, I was only 24 years old. On June 18th of that year, I made a lifestyle change. I started my journey at 228 pounds. When I started school in August, I felt AWESOME! I had been working out and eating right. I continued to lose weight and focus on me and it was great. My husband was finally getting the beautiful wife that his hunky self deserved. I was happy. In October of that year, an acquaintance (who became one of my best friends) asked me to run a half marathon with her the following March. I had recently began running and she thought I would be the perfect running partner. For the next six months we ran and trained for our half marathon. I found a NEW ME, a girl that I LOVED! 

2008. Brought many changes. We had just gotten news that we would be moving to Japan for three years. I hit my lowest weight to date of 148. I felt awesome. I ran a half marathon in 2 hours and 21 minutes and DID NOT STOP ONE TIME. I was on it. I could do this. WAIT! I did this! I was in love with me. I was in love with who I had become. I was happy. As we moved to Japan my focus on what I put into my body was not near as important to me as I began enjoying all of the Japanese food. However, I never got above 165 and I still felt great. But I let go of my goals when it came to my body. I didn't think I would ever see high numbers on thats scale Again. I was wearing a size 8, a size that was so very foreign to me! I felt AWESOME! 

2009. I found out I was pregnant. God had blessed us. I firmly believe that I got pregnant because I had lost the weight and was active. I had previously been diagnosed with PCOS and was told it would be very difficult for me to have children. Getting pregnant was a big surprise. July of that year we had gone to Tokyo to climb Mt. Fuji. We did it! We were the second couple up and back down Mt. Fuji with our group. We were loving the active lifestyle together. Two days later I found out I was five weeks pregnant. How awesome! Life couldn't get better. :) Oh, but it could get worse. December of that year I found out that my brother was killed in a car wreck and we were rushed home to be with family. Rushed from Japan still took two days. A part of me died with Shane that day. I will never be the same person. I am so thankful though that my brothers last memories of me are not the fat Cassey. A couple of months before that terrible day he was talking to me on the phone telling me that he and my mom were looking at old pictures... and that they just never realized how big I really was all those years. I was Cassey... the people that loved me FOR ME, never saw the fat.. until it was not there anymore. I am sad to say, I am looking very similar to that girl from years ago again today. 

2010. I enjoyed being pregnant in Japan. I missed my brother like crazy. I continued to eat and eat. I was one of those gals that said when I get pregnant I will not eat like I am eating for two... I will eat healthy, workout. Yea, right! The only thing that I worked was my jaw... eating all of those Popeye's mashed potatoes. I am also one of those girls that covers up my pain, sadness, anger, etc. with food. Why I have allowed food to suppress my feelings for so long is beyond me. March of that year I had went in for induction at 40 weeks and 5 days. I was prepared for a natural birth. I wanted to do it all the right way. I had researched it all.. I was READY! :) However, Noah would not progress. I ended up having a C-Section (not my plans:)). Going in to have Noah, I weighed in at 256lbs. WHOA! I was so swollen. I know everyone says that.. but seriously. :) Within two weeks I had gotten down to 185lbs... It was truly awesome becoming a Mommy.

Today. I sit here quite a bit heavier than what I was before I had Noah. I have not been able to find my mojo to get this weight off. I continue to allow food comfort me when I am sad, angry, lonely. I have finally joined a gym and I really, really LOVE going. I have not lost any weight, though. No matter how much I workout, I haven't lost weight. Clearly the answer is the food I have been eating. I just can't seem to kick that bowl of cereal, that slice of fresh made bread, that pasta dish, etc. For the past two years I have been toying with a COMPLETE lifestyle change with how we eat. I have been researching it and I love everything I read and know about changing my life. It is just taking that step to do it. I want my family to be a healthy family. I know the right steps... but again, it is a matter of doing it! 

A few weeks ago I started reading into the Paleo Lifestyle. Have you heard of it? Tonight I joined the Paleo Challenge at my gym for 30 days. I am not sure if putting this out there for everyone to read is the right thing or not. I worry about being judged or failure. But as my husband said: "So, don't fail!" So if you are judging me... please keep it to yourself. I need support... and I know there are so many people that have struggled that can support me right now. I need all of the support that I can get. I also know there are many people just like me.. you are at your whits end, you are sick of how you feel and look, you need the motivation to put one foot in front of another. If I can motivate anyone to take that first step ... it will all be worth it.

So here I am. Today we took measurements and before pictures. My hope is that eventually I will feel comfortable enough to put those pictures up here for you to see... when you can see where I ended up.

So if you are reading this, will you promise to support me, follow me, and encourage me on my 30 day challenge, that is going to turn into my forever? I am going to have hard days... but I WANT and NEED to succeed. Something changed in me when I became a Mommy. I want and need to be here for my son. I want to grow old with my husband. I want to live an active life with my family. I want to have more children. This is the only way it is going to happen- changing my life. I don't want my child(ren) to grow up struggling with weight the way I have. I want them to have a healthy relationship with food and be able to enjoy it... but not think they have to depend on it during the hard times in their life! 

Here is to Day 1 of changing my life FOREVER!

*Day 1 went great. I ate 100% on track and had a great workout. I have not been tired or hungry all day*

-Thanks for your support!