July 31, 2008

Still no fan of the week

A few weeks back I made an effort to become Todd's next fan of the week. No luck yet, so I'm guessing this was his response.

July 30, 2008

WTBW? Wednesday

My good friend Mark Arant wrote an interesting post about a dream he had while in Istanbul. You should totally click on his site to read it if you haven't already.

He talks vividly about a devil-like creature ready to attack and found himself praying to save himself from the beast.

The mind is such an interesting thing. Thoughts and ideas just fly in and out all the time. Some are great, some just are something to think about.

I've never had a dream like Mark's, but I did find myself whistling "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas" today.


If you are a frequent checker of our blog, I'm sure you have been somewhat disappointed recently with our lack of posts. Having no internet at home sure makes it a little tougher to post updates.

We have found not having the internet and cable or anything like it really isn't all that bad. We've managed to live so far. We find things to keep ourselves busy and enjoy watching a little bit of a movie over several nights before we go to bed is kinda fun. We also find ourselves looking out the windows, enjoying the wildlife the pond provides.

Currently we are working on a book case for the baby room. The pieces are cut and we started painting it last night. We got a good start, I'll just say it was a great thing we put down plastic.


Sometime ask Allison the difference between Fahrenheit and Celsius.


Allison's midwife informed her last week 35 weeks is the goal for delivery. In case you are anxious to buy gifts for him/her, plan accordingly.


Sometime soon I promise I will get it together and actually post something with pictures.

July 22, 2008

Tuesday Tailgating in Ames

Football season is only a month away, but tailgating and bikes took over Ames today as Ragbrai rolled into town.

What a sight as tens of thousands of bikers and support vehicles filled the streets and parking lots all over Ames. All the areas around towers, around the stadiums, Vet Med, and cross country fields were filled with tents, buses and RV's.

Here are some pics from the day.

I don't know who this guy thought he was fooling.

Seeing all the activity makes me wonder where some of these small towns find the place to hold all these people. Do they rent out neighboring pastures or something. Iowa State and Ames really did a great job organizing the people and it sure looked like a lot of fun for those who rode.

A couple interesting sights I saw....

-support vehicles setting up at 8 a.m.
-some crazy outfits.
-a guy wearing only sandals, a helmet and a speedo.
-Styx stage
-some people that looked like they must have been dropped off at the edge of town and rode in the last 2 miles.

Probably everyone riding (from Iowa at least) knew someone in Ames, so that makes it even more fun.

July 21, 2008

In case you are wondering..

Yes, our blogging has slowed down a little recently. The biggest reason is because we now live in a place without internet access.

That's right, we moved from our 3rd floor penthouse suite apartment into the big house and are enjoying living there. Thought I would post a few pics of what it looks like now that we have some furniture and things in the place.

If anyone has any ideas on how to get internet access without a phone line we will never use, or a cable line we don't need, please let us know. Surely someone knows something that would work right?

Also, thanks again to everyone who helped us move. It sure was great having everyone there to lend a hand.

July 16, 2008

Whatchu talkin 'bout Willis Wednesday

My rant for today is simple....

What are you thinking Brett Farve? Stay retired. Go out with some class as one of the most elite quarterbacks to play the game.


July 13, 2008

Dinner and a show

Today Allison and I enjoyed a fine Applebee's meal with some great friends and lots of laughter. Our friends (and the brains behind my company advertising) Todd, Melissa and Ella stopped by our house after church where we were treated to both a fascinating harmonica concert by Todd and a glimpse of how handy he is at repairing cars.

We all had a super time. I can't help but think maybe all the laughter and stories back and forth might earn us the coveted fan of the week.

The new standard of moving

Allison and I moved yesterday to the big house. No, not jail. The house we built.

We had lived on the third floor since we got married 16 months ago, and Allison had lived there a half year before that. Needless to say, we had collected a lot of stuff up there.

Moving would be a pain. Could we possibly round up enough people to help it seem manageable? Thousands of trips up and down the stairs with arms full of all sorts of furniture and boxes. Or not. Leave it to me to find efficiency in an otherwise time consuming task.

And it helps to have subs that like me.

Four trips up and down with the lift. Unload right into the trailer. It almost made moving fun.

Now we are trying to sort through everything at the house. We are finally getting to use some of the wedding gifts that have been stored since our wedding because we didn't have room to get them out.

Thanks again to all who helped moved. We had a great group of people with great attitudes and it made for a super moving day.

July 11, 2008

No More Bed Rest!!!!

Yep that is right, no more bed rest for this chick for now and hopefully the rest of the pregnancy.

The doctor's appointment went well today. No further dilation or increase in the contractions. We haven't got any test results back yet since I just went to the doctor this morning but even without all the test results the doctor says everything is looking good. We also got to see L.B.J. again in an ultrasound and of course he/she was not cooperating so we still don't have very good pictures. I hope this isn't a sign of how stubborn he/she will be once they are born! I'll take what I get though!!!

On a more personal and serious note. I want to thank all of you who have been praying for Jared, L.B.J. and I. Your prayers have been such a blessing and I have felt the power of your prayers numerous times over the past week. So THANK YOU!

God has continued to increase my trust in Him and His will throughout this interesting weekend and week. I see now, even more than before, my part is small in comparison to His when it comes to our developing baby. It is by God's will that all things happen. By His grace and His alone I will be able to carry our baby full term. And if He has a different plan I know that He will be by my side the whole step of the way. I will leave you all with a verse that has been a major encouragement to me the past week.

Psalm 28:7
The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to Him in song.

Thanks again for your prayers! I cannot stress enough how helpful they have been!!!

July 10, 2008

I had nothing to do with it, but I'm still proud

Today, the ISU Cyclone athletic department unveiled plans to build its new practice facility. If you would, take time to click on the ISU Cyclone link on the right and read the top story.

I'll explain why this could be extra exciting for me in a later post.

Again, click on the link to at least see the picture of what is going to happen.

July 9, 2008

Whatchu talkin 'bout Willis Wednesday

What a week so far.

Who would have thought we would celebrate Todd and Melissa's anniversary in the hospital. (happy 6 years!)

As you can see by the baby counter on the right side of our screen, we are under 100 days left of the pregnancy. Just a little over three months, for most people anyway. We are thankful for everyday that LBJ can stay inside.

Some confusion arose with some of my emails/posts recently on the sex of the baby. Yes-LBJ stands for little baby jared, but we don't actually know if we are having a boy or girl. We just liked the nickname. And if you have any great baby names we should consider, pass them onto us. If you are so bold, use the comment section.

Again, thanks for everyone's calls and messages recently. A lot of people have shown a lot of concern over the last couple days. Hopefully we will get a great response from the doctors this Friday when she goes in for more testing. We'll definitely post when we know.

Usually my WTBW Wednesdays are more for reflection, but I thought I would use part of this weeks as well to praise my friend Todd Schulz. We've enjoyed some back and forth blogging over the last few months, but I feel the need to point out his most recent mockery of me.

Months ago, Todd took it upon himself to "humble" me. He took the most ridiculous picture of me and decided to promote it to #1 on the google image search of Jared Willis. A few weeks ago, it hit the top. Click here for it.

Let me just say, I've never been so proud to be number one. Somewhere there is an high school classmate of mine googling old friends and comes up with this picture. I can't imagine what they might think.

Thanks Todd!


I also noticed I haven't posted any pictures for awhile.


So here is my most favorite picture I took in Hawaii. It's at the highest point in Maui at sunrise. Even after getting up at 1:30 a.m., isn't she pretty?

July 7, 2008

We're home

About 6:45 tonight, we were finally let go from the hospital. Allison's marching orders consisted of plenty of rest, no work for at least this week, no lifting, lots of laying around and "we'll see you again on Friday."

When Friday morning rolls around, she will have another ultrasound and a few other tests/observations done which will hopefully tell more about what to expect in the coming weeks.

Allison and I are really glad to be home. Allison is happy for a t-shirt and shorts instead of a backless gown, a shower, good food courtesy of her mom, no needles stuck in her arm, going to the bathroom whenever she wants, and a hopefully great nights sleep with nothing to wake her up. I am happy she is home.

It's been an interesting few days, thats for sure. More trying emotionally for me at least than I would have ever thought. Some nervous moments, some small amounts of tears. Lots of love.

Thanks again for your prayers and encouraging calls, comments on our blog, and stopping by to see her. We are really grateful for each of you who offered support in any way.

Keep checking back as one of us will continue to post how she is doing, what is predicted by the doctors and how you could possibly help if needed. Thanks again everyone.

Allison update 3

Allison had her magnesium levels dropped last night about 6. Since then, her contractions have unfortunately picked back up again to several an hour. She was taken completely off medication this morning at 6 a.m. So far, they have stayed consistent.

The doctors came in this morning to talk with Allison and I and are hoping she can be released tonight about supper time. They want to keep her on bed rest at least throughout this week. She has another appointment Friday which should hopefully give a more clear indication of what the next few weeks will be like.

The good news, in a way, is that apparently she has been having these contractions for at least a month, but thought it was the baby moving or something because they were such a small amount of pain during those times. I say good news because she was able to function normally during these times and there were no complications.

Hopefully even if contractions continue, she will be able to be somewhat normal in the coming weeks. I'll continue to update the blog as things change throughout the day.

July 6, 2008

Allison update

First off, thanks to those of you who have showed us (and especially Allison) so much love and support the last couple days. Your calls, emails, thoughts and prayers have been very encouraging.

It's about 10:00 Sunday night as I write this. Allison had a pretty good day overall. While it is tough for the nurses to be sure, they believe her contractions have mostly stopped. Her monitor still shows some spikes, but they could be caused by things such as the baby moving, Allison moving, or other misc things.

Allison feels a lot better. Although she hasn't slept much these last couple days, her discomfort is tolerable. The main pain she experiences now is from the things she has strapped to, or stuck in her body.

This afternoon, her IV dosage of magnesium (used to stop the contractions) was cut in half. They will continue to monitor her overnight and if all goes well, she will be taken off completely tomorrow morning. They will then again monitor her for awhile and hopefully she may be able to come home Monday sometime.

The future still hasn't been outlined much for us yet. Don't know if she will be on bedrest, be able to go back to work sometime, or how long she will actually be able to carry the baby.

Overall, I would say Allison is doing well, considering. Her spirits are fairly good and her emotions are better than I would have expected. She is looking forward to coming home soon, that is for sure. She is looking forward to her own bed, no one poking her and checking her blood pressure, and being able to head to the bathroom without it looking like a thanksgiving day parade.

While the prognosis is currently good, we know it may be a tough road for this child. Please keep the doctors, Allison, LBJ and I in your prayers.

I'll keep updating this blog when new info comes our way.

The weekend rundown

We have had an interesting 4th of July weekend so far.

Thursday night, we traveled to my mom and dad's house, had a bonfire and cooked hotdogs, then Allison and I pitched a tent out in the pasture woods and camped out for the night. The next day we traveled to Parkersburg to see how the town has changed since the tornado. I was surprised at how much had been cleaned up already and how much had begun to be rebuilt. It looked so much better than the first time I was there.

We came back to Ames Friday night late and watched fireworks on PBS then went to sleep.

Saturday morning I mowed the yard at the house and we got ready to head to Ankeny to do some registering for baby stuff at Target.

Before we left, Allison started hurting a little on her side (like after you get done running). It continued to get worse as we drove and by the time we got to Ankeny, she was hurting pretty bad. She told me to grab something to eat and when I was half done eating, we knew it was bad enough we needed to head back.

Her pain was shifting lower and lower and was increasing pretty quickly. She then began throwing up in the car at which point my speed to the hospital got faster and faster.

We arrived at the ER and she was taken up to 4th floor to be examined by the on call doctor/midwife. It was quickly realized she was having contractions. Lots of them. She is only at 25 weeks (out of 40) so there was quite a lot of concern. They put her on an IV and gave her some magnesium which was to help reduce the contractions. About 6:00, it began working and her contractions began slowing from every minute or two down to every three to five minutes.

She had begun dilating some and there was talk she may need to be taken to Des Moines for delivery if it couldn't be stopped soon.

Soon after, her pain began to subside and the contractions slowed a little more. She didn't sleep much last night, but is feeling better today. They will be keeping her overnight again tonight (Sunday) for more observation. After that, we don't know what will need to happen. We don't know if she will be on bed rest or be able to go back to work or what. We'll keep everyone updated though.

Thanks to all of you who have offered prayers and support these last 24 hours. It has been really tough on both of us. For me, I can't think of a time in my life where I was so bothered. Please keep Allison and our little baby in your prayers as we go through these next few days. Pray the contractions would stop altogether and she would be able to carry the baby for many more weeks.