Continuing Dixie’s Story…

Well, hello there!
Welcome to another chapter…To say it has been a LONG and exhausting 3 months would be an understatement. So much has changed yet so much still remains the same. If you need a catch me up on where we were in May, you can read everything here. On a more “normal” note.. We did have a great summer!

We spent lots of time at the lake and the beach…



And… Sister turned One!!

Over the past 3 months I have probably heard the words “nutrition and development” 500+ times. Those 2 things have been our main focus. We have made strides with both of these. We still definitely have a long road ahead of us but every week we see improvement and that is all we can ask for. Dixie has gained 1.5 lbs in the past 3 months. I know it doesn’t sound like much but we were leaping for joy with every ounce. That is a lot for her. She is now a whopping 17 lbs and 4 oz. as far as nutrition is concerned we are still aspirating which means we are still on thickened feeds. She has become very hypersensitive and aversive to certain tastes and textures which limits us to what we feed her. We are mainly on formula with her sometimes allowing us to slip some whole milk in there. As far as actual “foods” are concerned, we don’t do much… She does like banana baby food and Greek yogurt, she has recently started some crackers as well. But, that’s about it and we are okay with that. As far as our weekly routine is concerned we are in Therapy 4 days a week. We see an Occupational Therapist, A Speech Therapist, a Physical Therapist and a Developmental Therapist. They are all amazing and truly a godsend. They have Dixie diagnosed on a 40% delay. Obviously, there is no walking or anything like that but we, as well as our therapist feel confident that in the big scheme of things this will all
just be a season of our life and not a diagnosis that she will be defined by. Hallelujah. So, that’s the long/short of it without boring you with ALL the little details.

Now, to why I am writing this update…

Where we are now/What’s next:
While we are dealing with multiple issues and diagnosis’ the 3 “official” diagnosis’ that Dixie has right now that most of her issues fall under are…
1. Dysphagia with aspiration – difficulty or discomfort in swallowing
2. Hypotonia – decreased muscle tone
3. Submucous Cleft Palate in the soft palate- A submucous cleft palate is one type of cleft palate. The word “palate” refers to the roof of the mouth and the term “cleft” indicates a split in the palate. The palate consists of both a bony portion (hard palate) and a muscular portion (soft palate).

Back in June we met with the surgeon that would eventually be repairing Dixie’s cleft palate. At that time we were in the beginning stages of the “nutrition and development” process and felt that pursuing the surgery then would have more cons than pros. Now, after 3 months of intensive therapy we feel that Dixie is ready and strong enough for us move forward with this inevitable process. We have discussed everything, in length, with all of our doctors and therapists and everyone is on board and ready for this next step. We met with our Surgeon again yesterday and surgery is now scheduled for September 11th.
We have also been waiting on an MRI of the brain because of her hypotonia. Luckily LeBonheur has agreed to perform the MRI before/during the surgery process. While this means she will be sedated longer it is a much better option than having to undergo anesthesia 2 separate times.

What we know and what we need from you:
-We anticipate the surgery will last around 2 hours. With the MRI being done as well Dixie could be away from us for close to 4 hours or more. Please pray for us as we sit in the unknown waiting for check ins from the doctor and surgery team. Please pray for Dixie that she not be confused while being surrounded by unfamiliar faces before being put to sleep and while waking up. And please pray for the team of nurses and doctors that we are so trustingly putting our baby girl in their care.
-We have been told the the first day can be tough for all involved. There is a possibility of a bloody recovery accompanied by lots of pain. Please pray for Dixie as I’m sure she will be experiencing pain and confusion and please pray for Me and Will as we try and make her as comfortable as possible. We have had nothing but fantastic experience with LeBonheur and we expect this time to be no different.
-We are hoping to only be in the hospital one night. {fingers crossed} Please pray for Hayden and Kash as their lives become interrupted once again and their confusion and worry always runs high. They love their sister and they love their routine. We are blessed with some awesome friends who take them in as their own and make it so much fun for them.
-Dixie will be placed arm restraints immediately after and for 2 WEEKS (in order to not put anything in her mouth) following surgery. This breaks my heart. Please pray for us all as we try to make her as comfortable as possible. Anyone that has had or been in the same room as a 1 year old knows how active they are. We have been told that this is a tough and limiting part to her recovery.
-Overall please just keep us in your thoughts and prayers in the weeks to come and the weeks after surgery. Pray that we not become anxious and that we remember where our strength comes from.
I will continue to update as surgery draws near and during/after. Thank you for being a part of our village. Lord knows it takes one.



Happy Halloween

I could not be more excited to see October go but not without going out with a bang. Despite this…

I can’t wait for fun, pumpkins, candy and friends and hopefully some trick-or-treating. How appropriate for Halloween to be on a Thursday? Here’s a “throwback Thursday” to 6 years of Halloween fun in the Parker house!






Here’s to this little pumpkin’s first Halloween…

Wishing everyone a happy and safe Halloween!

Friday’s Five

1. One month with this sweet little thing. One month of no sleep and practically a walking zombie that I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world. (Except maybe a nap)



2. Fall is in the air! My favorite favorite season of all!! I’ve stocked up on a couple of fall polishes already. So far I’m loving Lost on Lombard by OPI and After School Boy Blazer by Essie.


{Instagram: paigecparker}


3. This book by Lisa TerKeurst has more than gotten me through this first month of Kindergarten/new baby/stay at home toddler. I highly recommend it.

Yes, yes I am. Kidding!! I’m not- kind of.

4. Thank you baby Jesus for this stuffed animal that’s noises put my baby to sleep. I could honestly kiss this stuffed sheep on the mouth! I have the regular sized one right now but I am off to purchase the on the go one today, too!

5. The first Home Game in Oxford. So sad that we can’t be there due to #1 having his own football game tomorrow but our hearts definitely will be. And after last weeks big win I’m sure the atmosphere will be better than ever. Go Rebs! Hotty Toddy!!




A Break Before Baby


I unintentionally have taken a blogging break before baby. The past few weeks have been filled with making my list and checking it twice, Santa Claus style. I’ve been cleaning, getting everything ready to be gone away from my house for 3-4 days, getting everything ready for our big guy to start Kindergarten, school supply/clothes and grocery shopping, doctor’s appointments and just trying to enjoy every last minute of Summer with my boys. To say its all been a bit overwhelming would be an understatement. I can’t believe we are in our last 5 days as a family of 4. It all seems a bit surreal. We cannot wait to welcome Dixie into our family next week. I pray that among all the chaos that comes along with a new baby that I am able to soak in every minute of it and really cherish this special time in our life. I cannot wait to see the dynamic that a little girl brings to our crazy world of boy. I can’t wait to give my boys the title of “protector” of their little sister. I am excited to see my husband hold his daughter for the first time as I think she will show him and all of us a new look on life. More than anything amidst all the nerves, anxieties and worries, I can’t wait to hold the little girl I thought I’d never have. The blog has really taken off in the past few weeks even though I have been nonexistent. I am excited about getting back into regular blogging once we are home and settled. There is so much that I can’t wait to write about from trying to get back the post-baby body to new recipes I’ve been trying out. I will post a brief update when baby Dixie makes her grand debut. And, I’ll be back soon with some fun new posts this fall. Until then, please be in prayer for a safe delivery and recovery and a smooth transition for all of us!



The Hospital Bag 411 part II

After being up all night with Braxton Hicks contractions, I decided it was time for me to finish packing my hospital bag. After all, maybe I will have a use for it sooner than I thought. Either way, in 19 days we are headed to the hospital whether we are ready or not. So…let’s be ready. I already did a post on what I packed for the baby. You can find it here. Now, what I packed for me…

The Bag: Vera Bradley Large Duffel in Provencal found here. This pattern is actually one of their sale colors right now at $63.75 vs. the usual $85.
What’s in the bag:

  • Lightweight Robe – for the first day I will stay in the hospital gown. I have csections so I am just coming off some major pain meds and you are so so sore. After night number one I will change into a lightweight robe.
  • Pajamas – This go around I got a sleeveless nightgown with a very light robe that goes over it. Both cotton.
  • 4 Sports Bras – For more reasons than one, I have decided not to breastfeed this time. I have been doing some research on how to dry up your milk quickly. The route I am going to take is tight sports bras immediately after delivery. I packed 4 because I usually where 2 at a time anyway, and I packed various sizes since your milk still does come in.
  • Regular Bra – I don’t know why and I probably wont even wear it except for to the hospital on surgery day, but it’s there if I want it.
  • “Granny Panties” – Goodbye body as you know it. Post delivery comes with all kinds of fun changes. I mostly use the mesh underwear offered by the hospital just because of my csection incision and the pain that I am in. But whether you have csection or a regular delivery, you are going to want to pack some underwear that you don’t mind ruining or throwing away after your hospital stay. Trust me.
  • 3 pairs of socks – hospitals are always cold and I am very cold natured. I need my socks.
  • Flip Flops – makes life easier when going to the bathroom, taking walks etc.
  • Stomach Wrap – I have a few different kinds of these and I packed all 3. The hospital gives you one if you are a csection patient, and it is by far my favorite. I still have mine from baby number 2 so I put that in my bag just in case they’ve changed them since last time. I also have the Baboosh Body and the Belly Bandit. Whether csection or regular delivery, wrapping my stomach very tight after delivery provided so much relief. Your uterus is steadily shrinking back to size and you will continue to have contractions. The belly wraps make everything so much easier. I wear them for a couple of weeks post baby.
  • Going home outfit – Pack something loose fitting and comfortable. Preferably something you have worn during this last trimester of pregnancy. As much as I’d like to tell you you will be right back in those size 4’s, it just isn’t going to happen. If you are prepared with something that is going to fit you then you won’t experience any disappointments upon leaving the hospital. Your hormones are going to be running wild. Don’t let weight or ill fitting clothes add to it.
  • Phone Charger


I am lucky in that I am not one of those people who doesn’t have to wash my hair everyday. Thank God. So, I don’t even know if I will wash my hair during my hospital stay but I packed everything I would need to “get ready” just incase. Half of this stuff will probably not even get used but at least I have it if I need it. You are going to feel like you’ve been hit by a bus… any thing you can bring that will make you feel better about yourself, pack it.

Shown in picture:

  • Makeup Bag
  • Mirror
  • Hairspray
  • Spray Gel
  • Dry Shampoo
  • Lotion
  • Deodorant
  • Body Spray
  • Eye Makeup Remover
  • Makeup Remover Towelettes
  • Cotton Balls
  • Qtips
  • Glasses Case with Glasses and Contacts
  • Contact Solution

Not shown in picture:

  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Body Wash
  • Shaving Cream
  • Razor
  • Hair Dryer
  • Straightener
  • Curling Iron
  • Bobby Pins, Ponytail holder, clippy
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste

That’s it. I think I am officially ready for my 3-4 day hospital stay. WooHoo. I can’t believe it is so close! Lucky for us we live extremely close to the hospital. Our 2 boys will be staying at our house with their grandparents. This makes life a little easier for me since I don’t have to worry about packing bags for them. Will will just pack a bag for the first night (Pajama Pants, Tshirt, Boxers, Socks, a pair of Jeans, Tennis Shoes, Toothbrush, Toothpaste) He will be able to go home everyday to tend to things the boys need as well as take a normal shower and change or get more clothes etc.

I hope this post helped any first time or 2nd, 3rd time moms get prepared for their hospital stay as well. It took me a while to even figure out where to begin and this is my 3rd go at it. But, I think I am prepared. Now, come on baby!!



Friday’s Five

1. A week full of wins for our Grizzlies. It’s so nice to have our city that is usually full of controversy and political mishaps brought together by some positive light and celebration! Go Grizz!!


2. A Mother’s Day weekend spent with my Mama and precious kiddos. And some sweet new kicks that I can’t wait to test out on the road once my uterus is baby free.



3. 29 weeks and counting… Baby Dixie is going to make her debut before we know it! We got a glimpse at her precious little face this week and it makes me that much more anxious to hold my sweet girl.


4. Celebrating another year of Marriage with my awesome hubby. I would get all sappy here but ill keep it short. I thank God everyday for him. I am so blessed with a wonderful life and it is most in part to him. I look forward to 50 years more…


5. Speaking of sappy… Class of 2026??!! 😦 no way! I’m hoping its because I’m pregnant and all the hormones but every time I think of sending this little guy off to Kindergarten in the fall I turn into a big ball of emotions. There’s nothing like the love between you and your first born and I’m not quite sure this mama is ready to let go quite yet. That’s what they make summer for right? 10 weeks at home and no school and I’ll be shipping him off to Kindergarten with a smile. But for now, ill continue to dread it and look at his baby pictures! *tear tear*


1st Trimester Must-Haves

I woke up today feeling like a weight was lifted off of my shoulders. Keeping a secret from your kids for 12 weeks and 1 day is hard, y’all! The boys are so excited. Kash, a bit confused, but just sharing in the excitement of his big brother. And as for Will, I think he is most excited that I can now *complain* for lack of a better word, about my discomfort, nausea and just general snide remarks, to someone other than him! Seriously, I haven’t been THAT bad. Here are a few, well 14, of my FAVORITES that got me through that mean ol’ first trimester.


1. Sweet and Salty Almond Bars:


These have been a must have for me every morning. Giving me just enough energy and the only thing I could really stomach first thing. Couldn’t live without them.

2. Smoothie:


I have had a VERY VERY tough 1st Trimester and beginning of the second. I was sick with both of my other boys as well so I guess it should have been expected. (funny how we forget these things). I haven’t been able to stomach much food. I have been forcing myself to still continue my gym/running routine if only for 30 minutes. This smoothie recipe has kept me on my feet after my workout.

1 handful of Ice

Cover ice with Almond milk

1 scoop EAS Lean and Tone Protein Powder


1 Banana

1 cup MP Mango Berry Fruit Blend frozen


Handful of blueberries

1 Spoonful of Nonfat Plain Greek Yogurt

A Squirt of Honey

Put all into the blender and blend until smooth.

3. Ginger Root:


On top of the Phenergan that my OB has prescribed, I have found that Ginger Root helps a TON with my nausea. I take 2 capsules 3 times a day to help keep the nausea at bay. 

 4. FROYO:

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The only thing I have been “craving” or just able to eat is Frozen Yogurt and a lot of it. Take me to one of the serve yourself places and I’m in pregnant girl heaven!!

5. Maybelline BB Cream:


Don’t you just love all the new changes to your skin and body? Can you feel my sarcasm through the computer?  My hormones shoot into overdrive as do most of ours and my face just can’t keep up. I haven’t been wearing much makeup as I can barely stand to get myself out of bed but I have loved Maybelline’s BB Cream. It is a great, light product with just enough coverage. I wear it in Medium.

6. Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm:

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Holy chapped lips! Who knew they could get so dry. Winter and the wind aren’t helping matters much either.  I have really been loving the burt’s bees tinted lip balm. I carry it with me everywhere. I like it in Hibiscus.

7. Maybelline Falsies Mascara:


Most days you will catch me in these three things: BB Cream, Lip Balm and Mascara. It’s usually all I have time for or feel like putting on. I’m really like the Maybelline Falsies Mascara as of lately. I’ve always been a big Sephora lover and still wear all of my high end stuff for special occasions but being a busy mom of almost 3 kids. 2 of those in diapers, it’s been nice to find some drug store finds that are comparable to the expensive stuff that I LOVE!

8. Gud Body Lotion:


Burt’s Bees has come out with a new line called Gud. I’m kind of obsessed. I’m really liking their Vanilla Flame body lotion. I can bare many smells these days and I have been staying away from perfume. This lotion gives off just enough scent. And, if there is one piece of advice I could give a pregnant gal…Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize. Your skin will thank you after the baby!

9. Facial Towelettes (Makeup Remover):


Can we say EXHAUSTED?? I usually have this long drawn out face routine at night. Not anymore. I have been using the Garnier The Refreshing Remover Cleansing Towelettes to remove my make up at night. It even removes Mascara. Quick, easy and faster to bed. J

10. Toner:


Thanks to the prenatal vitamins and my already naturally oily face I have been in break out city. My mother-in-law introduced me to Aqua Glycolic Tone. It has been fabulous. Not too harsh on my skin but keeping the break outs to a minimum. My skin has been much clearer than baby #1 or #2 and I really think it’s because of this toner. It’s a little pricey, but worth it.

11. Oversized Sweater:


Being as we waited until week 12 to share our news and this being baby number 3, it has been VERY hard to hide the baby bump. Everyone told me with number 3 it just pops on out there and boy were they right… I feel like I look like I did when I was 5 and 6 months pregnant with #1 and #2. I have feeling this will make for a very LONG pregnancy as well. I have been the queen of the oversized sweater/tshirt look. Winter has definitely been on my side in keeping this little secret as well. Layer, Layer, Layer. This sweater from Forever 21 is one of my favorites. I have it in a Large.

12. Yoga Pants:


Can you really have too many pairs of black pants or leggings? I think not. I literally LIVE in these. Every time I got to Wal-Mart I always check on their Danskin section. They don’t keep stuff long but you can find some GREAT stuff in that section. Especially if you wear work out gear 5 days a week like I do. I am OBSESSED with these(I got them in a Medium:

13. Scarf:


It’s rare that you will catch me without a scarf and a hat on. It’s my go to look. I have racks and racks of scarves. It has been a MUST HAVE in helping cover the baby bump that really isn’t a baby bump  yet and just looks like you gained weight. Here is one of the many ones I wear from Forever 21:


14. Military Style Hat:


I have this hat in the first 5 colors and you will catch me in it on MOST DAYS. I ordered them off ebay a couple of years ago and was so excited when I saw they were still selling it. You can’t go wrong with a low side braid and a hat. Anything to cover the color of GREEN during the first trimester is a winner in my book.

Those are my absolute cannot live without must haves that have gotten me through my first trimester this go around. Now, hears to the 2nd trimester and praying this nausea stuff goes away. I’m ready for that energy boost!