Friday, February 27, 2009


Happy Birthday Marly and Dean!

I have now officially been a blogger for about one year. Here is a look at my second post for the Tinnwers first birthday last year.

Here is a flashback to 2-27-07...

Marly (Baby A) was brought into the world at 7:54 am and weighted 5 pounds 11 ounces. She came out butt first. Because she may have swallowed fluid, she was quickly wisked away. This is Dean (Baby B) at 7:55 AM. He arrived screaming and peeing and weighted 6 pounds 14 ounces. Dr E held him up to show me. I am behind the blue curtain.

This photo is just after birth.... while I was being put back together. The kiddos needed to be in the warmers in the nursery after this. I spent time in the triage area because no recovery rooms were available. Mark went between me and the babies. All the grandparents arrived. When I was finally wheeled to my room, I waved to them and my babies as we went by the Family Waiting Room! I had been hanging out mostly alone in the triage area for many hours! Mark was able to bring Dean to me briefly while there.

Our first visitors were Gary, Pauline and Kelly Thompson & Dad and Chris. Chris's son Kevin came by. Dad and Chris returned. Brett and Rachel and Jan and Sheldon Melberg all visited, and then Gretchen and Dan.

Day two of life (Wednesday). Heidi Hagel Braid came to visit. Dad and Chris returned, and Jenny and Jeremy came by.

Day three of life (Thursday) - A snowstorm hit.

Day four of life (Friday) - Gary, Pauline and Jeff came to visit. We returned home in the evening. I was an emotional wreck and wanted to stay another night (per the recomendation of the Dr and nurses)...but Mark was ready to have ALL of his family home. Mark took good care of all us that first night on our own!

Flashback - Heading Home! 3-2-07

Because I did not blog the first year of the Twinner's life, this birthday you are getting flashbacks!

Marly and Dean after their first bath at the hospital.
Two car seat carriers and one new mommy about to head out into the real world, leaving the safe cocoon of the hospital and the wonderfully helpful nurses behind! Yup - I was pretty much terrified (mostly of my own surging hormones!).

Thursday, February 26, 2009

A Birthweek Flashback!

It's birthweek for Marly and Dean. In 2007, a week prior to the Twinner's birth, Dr. E scheduled their C-Section at what became my last pre-natal visit. He said, "How about next Tuesday?" Mark and I looked at each other and said, "Sure." His response was, "You can negotiate if you want to..." I didn't understand at the time he was indicating I may be very uncomfortable and un-wanting to wait another week. I measured 44 inches, weighed 167 pounds (starting at 131) and was short of breath all the time. My blood pressure was creeping up more and more, and had been for quite some time. I wanted the Twinner's birthday to be in March, so I was disappointed I would be a few days shy of 38 weeks. Dr. E was not scheduled in the hospital on Thursday, March 1, (exactly 38 weeks) so we settled for Tuesday.

In the week that followed, we all went to Ruth Chris for Rachel's birthday. (Protein for the babies!). My shirt only sort of covered my belly. I couldn't make it to the brunch for Chris's birthday. Mark was working and I was too unsure of my balance, movement, and driving to go alone. We did attend church on Sunday. It was a small crowd, as a snowstorm hit that weekend. It was moving for us to be able to worship and thank God for our gifts before the babies arrival.... plus I was missing my own mom.

Two years ago, on Monday, February 26th Mark and I went out for our "Last Supper." We wanted to go to our favorite little restaurant in NE Minneapolis called POPS! but they are closed on Monday's. I was tired and didn't want to travel far, so we settled for the Olive Garden by the Northtown Mall. When we returned home, I was to call into the hospital for instructions and an overview of what would happen the next day.

On Tuesday, February 27th, 2007 Mark and I left for Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids just after 5 AM. We arrived at the hospital almost on schedule at 5:35. At the desk, the nurses took one look at me and said, "Well you must be our twins for this morning." We checked in and began the paperwork and process. Everything went like clockwork. Dr. E arrived around 6:45 am. He checked my blood pressure and said, "I knew I picked the RIGHT day!" I walked to the OR delivery room around 7:15 am. Mark was brought in a short time later... and the rest is history. Just as I was told, both Marly and Dean were a part of our outside world just minutes before 8 AM.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

National Pancake Day!

It's Natianal Pancake Day! In honor of the occasion, IHOP is giving away free stacks of pancakes nationwide in exchange for a donation to the Children's Miracle Network, and Gillette Children's locally.

You can guess what is on my menu for today. At noon my co-worker Becky and I will be dining at the IHOP in Oakdale. For supper, I am treating my family at the Coon Rapids location.

Marly and Dean on National Pancake Day 2008.
On National Pancake Day 2007, I was off of work, but did venture out to IHOP with Mark. I spilled syrup on my huge belly.

Monday, February 23, 2009

A shout out!

I have a lot of extra special messages to send this February! So many warm wishes to pass along, some a bit late. Forgive me if I am being too public for any one of you (and hope you don't mind the "shout out"!)

Kris N- Congratulations on your exciting news! All of our best to you both!

Kelly K - Happy Birthday the day before mine!

Dawn Soucup - Did I spell that right? Probably not, maybe???, but that 's the onging fun of it. Happy Birthday to you the day after me. Dawn and I shared Toren family birthday parties all through our childhood. Our mom's would trade years hosting! There are many consecutive years of photos of us sitting in front of our birthday cake with candels, often made by Jody. Congratulations on being elected the fire chief! Now that's pretty cool.

Judy M - (A.K.A Yowdie) - Happy Valentine Birthday to you! Yowdie was one of my mom's best friends and of course we share a birthday. I am told on the eve of my own birth, my mom brought Yowdie a birthday cake to work. Prior to my arrival, they both worked for Jerry doing hair in Buffalo Lake. There is a flash back for you Yowdie!

Chris T- Happy Birthday to you last Friday.

Rachel M - Happy Birthday to you last Saturday.

Cynthia Z - Dahrrrrling... Mark and I wish you a speedy recovery from your knee surgery!

Happy 40th Jan and Sheldon!

Sunday, Mark, the Twinners and I headed home and beyond for a 40th Anniversary Dinner to honor my Aunt Jan and Uncle Sheldon. It was held at Max's in Olivia and there was a great turn out of friends and family. The wait staff even had to add a table! Prior to the noon meal, the family hosted cake during fellowship hour at First Lutheran in Hector. Unfortunately, it wasn't feasible for the Thomberg's to hit the road early enough to worship with the family.

It was a heartwarming experience to celebrate with them yesterday. Watching the contented couple, 40 years appears to have passed with ease, although I have no doubt my aunt and uncle have weathered many storms. It is clear these two have a strong foundation based on FAMILY, FAITH and FARMING. I believe these things have been steady and solid rocks for the them over the past four decades. (Please note the Melberg farms are generally free and clear of any actual rocks - big or small!)

After dining on chicken and roast beef, Jan and Sheldon spoke about their wedding on February 1st so many years back. They commented about their 7 pm service and the snow storm that hit. They discribe their honeymoon to Kansas (to visit Jan's grandparent) and their travels to California to tour sugar beet fields with several area farmers.

Well.... here we are in 2009 and I bet Jan and Sheldon could not add up the number of sugar beet fields they have trodden across since their very romantic honeymoon! The two have found many successes, in sugar and the sweetness of their relationship.

Congratulations Jan and Sheldon. You are an inspiration to your children and grandchildren, neices and nephews, and my generation!

Thursday, February 19, 2009


Where have I been lately??? In bed...with a high fever, aches and pains, severe cough, congestion, and a head ache. I started getting sick at the radiothon on Saturday. Even though I was not well, I decided I still wanted to have my family birthday dinner at The Cheesecake Factory on Sunday. By the end, I was miserable. I missed work on Monday and Tuesday, and managed a few hours on Wednesday. I still feel pretty crappy and did visit the doctor yesterday. The cough medicine with codeine did very little to help me last night. It is only 9:30 AM and I need a nap! (Everyone in my family did get the flu shot)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

KS95 for Kids

This is my 4th year of involvment with the 11th annual event benefitting Gillette and Children's Cancer Research Fund.

Please check it out on line or donate by clicking HERE!

Take a look at the kids stories. Add them to your Face Book, etc and help spread the word to help raise more money for kids!

Happy Birthweek!

Historically, I like to celebrate a "birth week" for my birthday. I enjoy planning a week of activities to commemorate my special day. Nothing over the top, just various activities with friends and family. Over the years, this has meant many different things or activities matching my given age. Prior to Marly and Dean, the "kick off" was a Sunday family brunch. For several years, my Dad treated us to Chez Collette, a favorite pick of mine. My 30th birthday included a wonderful party with many family and friends. Last year (my 33rd), the family brunch was at Jax Cafe, but was post -birthday, and of course included Marly and Dean. On my 32nd - I waddled into Lucia's in Uptown.

This year I have decided I am too busy. The KS95 for Kids fundraiser is this Thursday, Friday and Saturday, so... I have decided to stay 33! 33 is nice. 33 suits me well. 33 feels good. 33 is comfortable. I feel I should just stick with it!

The photo is me at 33. It was taken before the delicious lamb chop dinner Mark cooked for my Valentine birthday last year. Gretchen and Dan joined us for our special meal.

(Okay, in all actuality...I see a heart shaped pizza in my future Friday night for Thomberg Family Pizza. And I will see my family for a dinner instead of a brunch on Sunday...And I suppose 34 will come whether I celebrate a "birth week, " birthday, or not at all!)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Sharing my gratitude

It has been awhile since I completed my "gratitude groove" series of posts. It is sad how quickly one can slip away from feeling gracious for the simple blessings in life. (click on label below and you can view the series)

I would like to share my gratitude publicly for the individuals who gave of themselves to make my recent get-away possible.

Grandma Pauline - Thank you for caring for the Twinners in place of Kelly. Thank you for bringing and making them a delicious breakfast each morning.

Rachel - Thank you for the roast beef dinner and over night stay prior to our departure. Thank for the 3:45 AM airport shuttle. Thank you for caring for Marly and Dean and taking time off work. Thank you for taking them to the Zoo.

Cindy and the Koenig Family - Thank you for making my family a part of YOUR family. Thank you for loving and caring for my kids like they were your own. Thank you for sending me a recap of their time at your home. It warmed my heart.

Jesse - Thank you for driving up to Blaine to feed Ramona and get our mail.

Dad - Thanks for picking us up from the airport upon our return home.

oh... and Gretchen - Thank you for sharing your enthusasium and recommendation for the "Twilight" series for my beach reads! Perfect.

I am blessed by the relationships in my life.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

February 2007

The Twinners are fast approaching their second birthday and I am already getting sentimental. In the weeks ahead, you may find me posting my pregnancy and birth thoughts to preserve them before the memories fade.

For the past two years on Super Bowl Sunday, I have taken time to reflect on my status three years prior. Three Super Bowl's ago, Mark and I watched the game with the Huwe's, at Dan's parent's house in Shoreview. His parents were in Mexico and Gretchen and Dan were house-sitting. Martin was not even two months old. At the time, I was about 34 weeks pregnant and making clinic visits twice a week. Each baby weighed an estimated 5 pounds. I was in great spirits (I think?!?), but I was tired and I was big. That evening, I started to cry to Gretchen that I didn't think I could work anymore. I was bound and determined I would work until Dr. E told me I could not. At my weekly visits, Dr E would say, "Let me know when you want a note for work." I always resisted.

The Monday after the Super Bowl I made my regular clinic visit. Dr. E walked into the exam room and asked me how I was. He looked at my blood pressure. Even though tears were welling up in my eyes, I responded (in what I thought was a determined voice), "I am fine!" He looked at me and said, "How about you be done with work ... TODAY." With a meeker voice, I said, "yes...." The real truth was I was exhausted. Naturally, I could not get comfortable to sleep at night. Like many pregnant women on many nights, I would lay there on the edge of pain quietly sobbing.

The rest of the clinic appointment was uneventful. We again discussed the planned c-section, but set no date. Mark helped me and my huge belly on and off the exam table. I went back to work (even though I don't think this was my doctors intent), parked in the front lot with my special pregnancy pass, and waddled into my boss Darlis's office with my Dr's note. She looked at it, smiled, and said, "I have been waiting for this note since Christmas!" All my co-workers seemed almost excited to see me go. I suspect I had appeared quite uncomfortable for quite a while, or perhaps they thought I was going to go into labor in my cube. I spent nearly a full 8 hours at Gillette before making my final departure.

I spent the month of February resting on the couch. I was not on bed rest, and thought I would get bored, which was not the case. I slept a lot, went to my clinic visits, finished up my pregnancy yoga classes twice a week at Mercy Hospital, and found outings to simple places like Target (always with Mark's arm to guide and support me) to be enough excitement for one day.

February of 2007 was a restful, sleep filled month for me. I was excited for the life changing experience just around the corner. I will tell you I became a much happier pregnant person once the physical strain of working was removed. Truth be told, I did not nest, or clean closests or cupboards, or cook meals in advance. Mark on the other hand, organized every closet, sometimes at 3 AM!

Looking back, I wish could have banked some of those 'ZZZ's for the last two years!

Monday, February 9, 2009

I missed Marly and Dean.

While Mark and I were basking in the sun last week, Marly and Dean were back in Minnesota at Brett and Rachel's, and with the Koenig's for much of our vacation. Rachel sent these photos of their trip to the Zoo.

I know they were VERY well cared for at the Koenig's. When I arrived to pick them up Thursday, Dean was very hesitant of me. Marly was down right MAD at me for our absence. She looked at me, started to cry, and ran to Cindy. It took her a good 1/2 hour to smile at mommy's return. Yup... nearly broke my heart.

This weekend Mark and I spent plenty of time goofing off and cuddling the Twinners. Unfortunately, I felt under the weather Saturday... and Mark had the full blown, knock down stomach flu. The Twinners had already gotten it while we were away, so they were rearing to go, while Mark and I needed a time out.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Congratulations Kelly & Patrick

Kelly Thompson and Pat Kaulfuss were married last Sunday, February 1 at Sandals Negril Beach Resort & Spa for couples in Jamaica. The bridal duo were joined at their destination event by Mark and me, best man John, and Patrick's family - Mike, Renee, sister Katie and her boyfriend.

Kelly walked down the aisle barefoot to the beach a few minutes after 3 pm, just after a quick shower passed. It is good luck to have rain on your wedding day!

Mark walking his sister down the aisle.

Brother and Sister.

Kelly and Me.

Jamaican Rum and Fruit Cake.

Welcome to the family Patrick!

The happy couple.

Best man John, Patrick and Mark.

The Kaulfuss Family.

The couple will have a reception here in MN later this month.


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