Thursday, March 29, 2012

3 Year Anniversary - Warning: Lovey Dovey Stuff

Matt and I both forgot our anniversary this year! Whoops! I guess with all the excitement and doctor’s appointments our special day just got lost in the shuffle.

Truth be told, we never had a set date like “02/21/09” because the first night Thomas called me to come over when he was staying at Matt’s was like, the first day of the rest of our lives together. We just say February/March-ish because the line was so fuzzy and there was never a, “will you be my gf/bf?” line nor a date to mark it. We literally hung out for 2 weeks when one night we were laying in my bed watching Monster’s Inc. and we both just felt compelled to say how we were feeling.

I remember not wanting to say how I felt first but the look in Matt’s eyes just assured me he wasn’t going to think I was a crazy ass. Long story short we told each other we loved each other and that we knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together. Pretty deep stuff to spill after only 2 weeks and during a cartoon movie, but I guess that’s just us! Crazy asses and Disney fans!

My friends thought I had lost my mind but I knew in my heart that this was the real deal and I was right! Here we are 3 years later more in love than I ever thought my heart could handle and a mixture of the both of us brewing inside my belly! It’s been a pretty amazing ride.

To Matt on our fuzzy-lined 3 year anniversary:

I've never been so sure of anything in my life and you KNOW how I change my mind. You've always been the one thing I never questioned because I just knew and felt it was right. And when Thomas died we didn't grow apart - we grew together and that's an experience we've endured that not a lot of couples our age have done. Our bond turned out more than alright because of it and that's how I know we can make it through whatever life throws our way. I don't know where our future is headed, what will happen or who we’ll lose in the years to come. All I know is I want all the smiles and tears with you be my side. My fairytale doesn’t start when we say our vows - it started that very first night we saw each other for the first time in 4 years. I will always be eternally grateful for God and Thomas bringing us together. You are my most prized possession and I promise you have my heart, soul and love to consume you everyday forever. And when the time comes for me to leave this Earth know you have made my entire life worth living. You are the most beautiful soul I've had the pleasure of loving and you will always have a home inside my heart.



Tuesday, March 27, 2012

G e n e t i c s C o u n s e l i n g

When I was first diagnosed with my blood disorder, Beta Thalassemia, I was told when I was pregnant it would need to be a planned pregnancy. I previously miscarried and I was never sure why. Whether it was my blood disorder or not in God's plan or perhaps a combination of those and several other things. So a planned pregnancy has been a bust two times thus far.

A few other things I was told when I was diagnosed was that I shouldn't drink (ha, don't listen to that either. Ima cheap drunk though.) and that we'd need to continue to watch my hemoglobin throughout my life. My hemoglobin usually rests at 8 which is when blood transfusions are usually used. We decided then that we would wait and not do transfusions since I had lived my whole life without them anyways. The doctor stated when pregnancy rolled around that it would be a different story though. To our surprise my hemoglobin is at an 11! "Pregnancy likes you so far!" my doctor said but also stated we'd need genetic counseling to make sure Matthew wasn't a carrier of this blood disorder and to speak with a doctor who deals with high risk pregnancies.

So yesterday we met with a genetics counselor in Sioux Falls and I guess you could say I wasn't mentally prepared. I wasn't aware at how serious this could actually be if Matt were to be a carrier. Most people with/carry the Thalassemia trait are from the Mediterranean area and so I guess, it freaks me out even more Matt's grandfather's roots are from that area. If he were to be a carrier and our child is born with Alpha Thalassemia the child's quality of life would be almost non-existent if they even live through pregnancy and birth. That's when the doctors throw the word, "options" around which is hard just to think about when I have always felt every life has value.

Matt is pretty confident he is "fine" - like he would have symptoms if he was a carrier of certain genes that would conflict with mine. We, of course, have at least 2 weeks until we find out any sort of results and the suspense is draining and I'm only on day 1! Here's where I have a hard time giving my worries to God and trusting that He knows what's best for everyone in the situation. It's hard to give up control, ya know? I always enjoy talking with Thomas' family and his Mom reminded me God wouldn't give me anything I couldn't handle. So I'm going to try to be POSITIVE and enjoy my pregnancy. I no longer really worry about miscarrying again since I'm a sliver away from being complete with my first trimester! My lower stomach is starting to get really firm (first time in ages, hehe) and Baby Lenzpipes is the size of a lime!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Battle of the Blue Eyes

Matthew and I bicker - all the time about who we think has bluer eyes. It's kind of a little tease game we like to play with each other. We'll say things like:

"I love your eyes....even though mine are bluer."

"It must suck knowing my eyes are more blue."

"I hope the baby gets MY blue eye color."

"I honestly feel bad for you that you actually think your eyes are more blue. DE-lusional."

I was going to have you vote but I am not sure if even the viewers that read and see the picture of our eyes would settle the on-going argument. Plus, I'm a sore loser.

Maybe our eyes aren't even comparable.....Matt's eyes are lighter. It's hard to tell in this picture (because I only took one of his eye and 3 vagillion of my own) but Matt's eyes are a lighter shade of blue and mine are a TAD darker because of the navy ring I have ACCENTING the eye. See how sensitive I am here? Plus, I feel like I'm more special since Matt's whole family has blue eyes and I got the recessive gene. My mom has greeny-brown eyes and my dad has brown eyes. I'm SPECIAL (in so many ways). My eyes are my favorite feature. They are pretty and they help me see things. Which is, pretty freakin' awesome.

Anyways, If you'd like to kiss my butt and let me know that mine are, in fact, more blue - feel free to leave a comment, Facebook message and/or "like" me, tweet me, snail mail me, text/call/sext me, drive to my house and deliver a singing telegram serenading me. I mean, there really are a lot of options here. You are encouraged to take action!

  Happy Sunday sparklers - Enjoy the beautiful weather!

*Post dedicated to Future Baby Lenzen in hoping they get their Mama's eyes and their Daddy's metabolism.*

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

New Blog Design: HELLA SPARKLE

Yay! My blog is almost completely done being designed. I swear everyone thought I was yankin’ their chain saying that my blog was in the process of being designed! Well, I had a couple mind changes in the process and drove Dionne from Studio Chic Design crazy! She was a good sport though and so far has delivered this pregnant princess her dream blog design. I literally couldn’t have even dreamt up something this awesome. Thank you Dionne!

My aunt Amy from Diary of a Smarty Pants, was sooo unbelievably generous to willingly offer to have my blog designed professionally! She’s a spitfire lady from good ol’ Kentucky who shares my love of Sephora and BOOZE. Go check out her blog if you need a good sarcastic laugh. The Carpenter's are always a good family to turn to when you need a good laugh. J

Thank you Amy! I love you soooo much.

I can't wait until it's completely done! Anyways, what do you guys think? Love it so far or LOVE IT so far?! J

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


 Heaven in a stick

I would just like to tell you how EXCITED I am!! I found my ALL-TIME favorite foundation again (only after 3 years)!

I have used everything it seems like. I’ve worked at Clinique and Estee Lauder and used a lot of their foundations but NOTHING compares to this $8 Max Factor Pan-Stick foundation! Not only does it cover anything and everything but it’s CHEAP and FAST to use! I could orgasm using it it’s that good! Just kidding. Wow, now that I think about that it’s kind of dirty…it’s in a stick form. OMG, moving on…
I’ve seriously been in a very bad depression over it being discontinued in stores for the past couple of years and after being in a CRAZY foundation rut I googled my heart out to find my true love again. I ordered 2 colors because I couldn’t remember which color I was….Turns out I’m True Beige! Medium Beige will have to be for the upcoming sun*kissed months. Thank you baby Jesus and! 

Anyways, I’m happier than a bird with a French fry today! It’s the little things, right? Hope you’re all having a fabulous week.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


This is how I feel everyday.

Well, if the title isn’t blunt enough…..
This post has been a long time coming. I’ve had things I’ve wanted to say but couldn’t and wouldn’t. I’m dealing with situations now that I never dreamt I would be. And I don’t want to “sugar coat” (pun intended) the truth about how I feel about myself any longer.
As many of you know, I’m now a Beachbody Coach! I own my own business and help others work towards and REACH their fitness goals. A lot of people have told me they are “watching me” – watching my progress to see how well the fitness program I’ve chosen and Shakeology are working for me.
Well, now that I’m preggers I cannot, in any way, reach the physical goals I had set for myself in the beginning. I feel like I let myself and those around me down in a weird way. I have been going through this realm of emotions – like hourly – that go from excited to nervous to scared to sad.
Excited because I will have a precious (& hopefully healthy) baby boy or girl – (ps: Matt and I are still like, “I can’t believe I’m carrying MATT LENZEN’S baby!” and he’s like, “I cannot believe you are pregnant with MY kid!” – Anyone that knew us from High School can tell you why it’s bizarre. On a side note does anyone remember those silk button up dragon shirts he used to wear? LOL!!)
Nervous and Scared because I know N-O-T-H-I-N-G about motherhood, hanging out with a baby OR the entire human race….how do you raise children to be functional members of society and know won’t turn out to be Hitler or Charles Manson-esque. They had mother’s too ya know!
Sad because I feel like my whole life is about to change. Everything I’ve ever known is going to be so different. My 3 best friends aren’t engaged, pregnant or even dating! I feel like their lives are just beginning and mine is already figured out for me. (This is my selfish hormonal rage…I’m blaming it on that anyways.) I guess that’s what I get for spreading my legs!But again, I’m told it’s worth it.
Anyways, I’m also feeling an overwhelming feeling of insecurity. To be completely honest, I’ve went a long time without admitting how insecure I REALLY am. I never would admit to anyone – myself included – that I hate how I look, feel, etc. I feel FUGLY regardless of what you, my mom or God think.
I feel as though my whole body already looks like cottage cheese and I wanted to look good this summer! I’m horrified as to how I will look and feel this summer and my friends’ weddings. I’m crying thinking about it actually. And I sound so dang selfish!!
I am trying my best to stay positive and I have reevaluated my goals. Because being morbidly obese (that’s fun to say about myself) I can actually lose a tiny bit of weight during pregnancy and be completely fine. My new goal is 4 lbs/month with still eating the right amount of calories for me and baby + exercising safely. I plan on doing my Slim in 6 video which is mostly made up of cardio, resistance training and 100,000 squats. I can do it all minus the ab portion. I also plan on walking and doing a Beachbody baby yoga video later in my pregnancy.)
I guess I just get down because I cannot do what I had my mind set on. I’ve always been known as an extrovert and the past couple years I can REALLY feel my weight has affected that. That’s why anytime someone BEGS me to go to the bar or do this or that I usually make up an excuse as to why I can’t. Sad, but true.
What kind of LIFE is THAT?! That’s NOT how I pictured myself living. That’s why becoming a Beachbody Coach has literally, been the best thing in the ENTIRE universe for me. I never ever would have stuck with eating right/exercising this long. I encourage you to ask me about it! There are amazing opportunities – not only health wise but $ wise!
Anyways, I guess I just wanted to let the world know that I, Brandi Mother-Bleepin’ Carpenter, gets insecure sometimes too. I honestly am my own worst critic. I compare myself to myself. I look at pictures from 4-5 years ago and I think, “How the EFF did I let myself gain 100 lbs????? How the EFF does someone do that?????” I did though and it’s time to face it, slowly conquer it and MOVE on. I’m gonna do it even with this beautiful baby detour!! J

For those of you who are better with visual:



Sunday, March 11, 2012

Crunch Time Wedding Planning

I know, I know. I've wrote posts on wedding planning before months and months ago before I was really, really preparing for our big day! We are in crunch mode now with baby on the way. We want mostly everything prepared and ready to go by the time he/she gets here so it's a little less stressful and a lot less work!

My mom-in-law and I have been getting together almost every Saturday night to work on the crafty stuff and I'm trying to get everything in order! My mind was spinning a bit so I bought these 3 books off of Amazon (they came in a set for $40) to keep me in order : )

I wish I could tell you everything we're working on! It's so hard not to want to bust at the seams I'm so excited about it all!

Thank you Dollar Tree for saving me money on MOSS! Haha! Are you thinkin' what the bloody hell?? : )

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

How we told our Mother's we are preggers.

{pins custom made by Buttonit on Etsy}

Well, if you haven't noticed my Facebook page or the title to this blog entry....Matthew and I are expecting our first baby. "Hammy" as I like to call them. I liked the name Hamilton so I could call them, "my little hammy" but Matt shot that down like it was a tirty point buck.

So there we were 7 home pregnancy tests and a clinic visit later confirming we were pregnant. After the doctor's, "everything happens for a reason - it's all God's plan" pep-talk and the panic settled I got excited and wanted to think of a fun way to tell our parents.

When my "Grammy Ratliff" was alive she always and I do mean always wore a 'Grandma' pin. Missing her is a whole other bajillion blog posts. Anyways, I found these adorable pins on etsy and immediately had the owner custom make one for each of our mom's. (It's my mom's first grandbaby so I wanted it to be extra special and memorable for her).

"Mimi" for Matt's mom because her only grandson calls her that already.

"Grammy" for my mom because that's what we always called my grandma.

"Grandma" for my step-mom because I knew she wouldn't like "mee-maw" (my dad is a thorough bred Kentucky native ya'll)

Anyways, my Grandma's birthday is March 2nd and usually my mom and I get together and do something every year (like eat her favorite food - nachos). We had it all planned and bringing a gift bag didn't seem odd either since I usually buy her a cross with a verse or an angel for her on my Grammy's birthday. I had to mail my step-mom's and I told Matt's mom it was a get-well present.

I wrote them all 3 a card being discreet and just telling them how grateful I was God has brought them into my life and how someday I hope to be as great of mother's they have been. Here's what I wrote in my Mom's:

Happy Birthday to Grammy!!

I know you miss her. I miss her too. Sometimes it still doesn't feel that long ago we were visiting or spending holidays together. She was truly the epitome of magnificent. She was a beautiful person and an even better Grammy. I can't wait until the day my babies are your grandbabies. After all, I will have learned to be the best mother because of you and I know you will someday be the best Grammy because of Grandma. You are my rock. I love you more than anything Ma! Now, let's celebrate Grammy's birthday the way she'd want us to. NACHOS!!!!!!!!!


She never suspected that the present would be a 'Grammy TO BE' pin. She was like, "REALLY?!" and my step-dad says, "It's a grandma pin isn't it!?" and my brother jumped up to see it and the rest is basically history. I swear my mom was on the Kohl's website faster than I could say baby. She's ready to go all out ;)

So supposedly I'm due 10-11-12 and I'm literally worried constantly. Maybe it's a pregnant lady thing? I just can't stop thinking miscarriage or birth defect. I'm such a worry wart as it is and I feel as though motherhood may age me! Please pray for my baby's health and my stress free peace!

God Bless everyone and thank you so much for the joyful comments, texts, phone calls, etc.