Quick Disney Break – AWESOME Genealogy Day – Miracle Update


A few weeks ago my hubby was checking Disneyland prices and noticed a big price drop for last week.  We decided to move up our tentatively planned February Disney trip to last week.  It was fantastic!  I’m so glad we fit it in this year.  Our youngest is at the perfect age – he can ride everything and he LOVES the magic of Disneyland.

Hastily moving a trip to the same week as the big Family History Fair in my town meant I had to go into serious prep mode for both the trip and the Fair.  It all worked out wonderfully.  The Fair was this past Saturday (we got home late Thursday).

I had been a little bit nervous to be teaching four different classes all on the same day but it went great!  We had a fabulous turnout, especially considering the major snowstorm the night before.  I learned I can teach four different classes on the same day without losing my voice, mind, or ability to make sense.  Phew!

But the BEST part of the Fair was having a minute to talk to my sweet friend and catch up on her recent discoveries.  She is my elderly friend whose own father was her brick wall.  She had only one picture of him.  ONE!  And did not know for sure who his parents were.  Using her DNA results, we were able to identify those grandparents and come up with a hypothesis for which of their children is her father – he changed his name.  It turns out we were correct!  It also turns out that her father was married before he married her mother.  My friend has FOUR previously unknown half-siblings.  They are much older and have all passed away.  But there are two living children of those half-siblings.  They have connected and will meet for the first time THIS WEEK!  Photos have been shared and relationships have begun.

Using DNA with your research = MIRACLES.

Give it a try!



I have lots of catching up to do but had to share the fantastic news.  xoxo



Tell Me a Story – The Day You Were Born

Tell Me a Story

Tell Me a Story Challenge :

Choose a person.  Then do any or all of the following:

  • Make a list of the top ten stories about this person, a word or phrase will do.
  • Choose one story and tell a compelling, short version that will interest your family members in one minute or less.
  • Tell a more detailed version of that story including photos if you have them.

Note:  You can read about my inspiration behind this challenge here.  I’ve decided to reverse the order in my post.  If you are reading this, you like stories so I’ll start with the full story, then the bite-sized story to hook my family members, then the list of ten stories.


My oldest boy who is just days away from turning 18.

My first baby was born 11 weeks early after 6 weeks of bed rest – 3 at home and 3 in the hospital.  He was so small, just 2 lbs. 8 1/2 ounces.  The day he was born was something I will never forget.

It really started the night before.  I was exactly 29 weeks pregnant.  I was feeling sorry for myself and having a rough day.  Things were winding down and I realized that I hadn’t felt the baby move for a while.  I had a popsicle to see if the little one would wake up and give me a kick.  Nothing.  I ate another popsicle and finally there was one little kick.

I had an appointment scheduled for the next morning so I went to bed and hoped everything would be normal when I woke up.  During breakfast I felt one tiny kick.  The doctor listened to the heart beat and said everything sounded fine but he sent me over to the hospital for a non-stress test just to make sure.

The non-stress test was not great.  Baby’s heart rate stayed the same during the entire test.  They gave me snacks and buzzed my tummy with no change.  After 30 minutes of this my doctor ordered an ultrasound with a kick count.  It was my first ultrasound with this doctor.  We found out we were having a boy.  We had been so sure that we were having a girl and we were going to name her Anna.  We didn’t have any boy names picked out.

Well, baby boy passed the kick count and I was sent back to OB.  The nurse looked at me and told me I could go but she would stay until everything felt normal.  I started to cry because my doctor had told me that if I was admitted for anything I would stay in the hospital until my due date – 11 weeks away!  But I stayed and within a half an hour the baby’s heart rate was dropping from 160 to 60 over and over.  The nurses were faxing the strips to my doctor and to the specialists in Spokane.  It was very quickly decided that I needed an emergency c-section to save baby.

The life flight team was called and I was prepped.  As soon as the team landed on the roof my doctor started my c-section.  Our first baby boy was born at 29 weeks and 1 day weighing 2 lbs. 8 ½ ounces and measuring 15 inches.  I was taken into recovery and a few minutes later they wheeled baby into my room.  A kind nurse had taken a few polaroids of baby and then took a few of me reaching out and touching his hand.  And then baby and hubby were off on the helicopter to Spokane and I was all alone.

That night in the hospital was one of the longest of my life.  I couldn’t sleep, I was so worried.  I just alternated being staring at those polaroids and praying.

It wasn’t the entrance I was expecting for baby #1.  But he turned out to be a fighter.  He made it out of the NICU in just 7 weeks and 2 days.  He never had a surgery, antibiotics, or a setback of any kind.  We brought him home at 5 lbs. 3 oz. and he fattened right up.  He had a perfectly healthy, normal childhood and now that little tiny baby of mine is about to turn 18, graduate from high school, and leave on a mission for our church.

He always was in a hurry.  I guess it makes sense that he’s ready to leave the nest.  I could not be more proud of my tough little guy!

One Minute Story

My first baby was born 11 weeks early.  He only weighed 2 1/2 lbs!

Top Ten Stories List about Me:

  • The Saint Bernard
  • How I finished college
  • Miracle Baby #1 (or The Day You Were Born)
  • How I got my name – sub-stories: meeting another Amberly, pulling up my schedule
  • Miracle Baby #3
  • English for Families
  • Working mom, heart surgery
  • Spiderman Shoes
  • My scrapbooking groupie
  • Finding out I was pregnant in August (don’t get too excited, this was a few years ago)