Katinka’s 5th Birthday, Swimming & the Park, American Girl Dolls, + More


{ April 7 – 10, 2014 }

Anna comes into town this week so this post is…the everything before Anna comes post!

Story of my life…I am NOT patient with my stupid body/health problems so. I get tired of biking so I’m like “let’s run” & ran a little 5k or so. No big deal, right? Wrong. I hadn’t run for…a year? Because of my dumb patella femoral knee crap…yeah, do you remember that? I thought it was arthritis but in the end it wasn’t…it is just knee pain and usually goes away within a year…or so…mine is still a little there and it’s been a year. SO. I didn’t want to just do a little run because I was skipping my bike workout (really for my rib issue) & so I ran for like 45 minutes which wasn’t a good idea. My foot/ankle hurt to walk…well, it actually still hurts & it has been a week and a half hahaha. So embarrassing & sad! Long story short, I guess I need to ease into things & not just start at a little higher level…like it was high to begin with… :O

Besides the usual lame health problems which let me make a public announcement…

I didn’t use to have so many health problems growing up AT ALL!

Since being diagnosed with my Ankylosing Spondylitis a few years ago…honestly that is when it all happened, I think. I have Ankylosing Spondylitis – a rare form of arthritis …then I got pregnant, had dumb arthritic flares throughout pregnancy so couldn’t workout too much…I walked & that was SO LAME!, had an emergency c-section – woohoo! my abs were sliced in half (nice visual sorry), my arthritis flared up at about 8 weeks when Ryder started sleeping through the night, I started working out & also to “fight” my arthritis, my arthritis was the WORST it had ever been – couldn’t sleep/breathe/or walk without lots of pain, I got patella femoral symptoms – knee probs, have and still have a mysterious spinal pain that I actually just got an MRI this week for…finally!, jacked up my ribs lifting, & now hurt my foot/ankle running, haha. So my body SUCKS. But hey, I have one, and I am much better off than most Ankylosing Spondylitis patients but still, I am NOT normal. So yeah, sometimes I wonder if I didn’t try to be active & workout if I wouldn’t have so many dumb injuries??? LOL.

Moving on…because no one wants to hear about that.

>>> Ryder had swim lessons! He LURVED them. We also left for swim lessons an HOUR early…because I got confused. We had a presidency meeting at my house & then Ryder woke up early & then I decided to go to swimming haha. So on our way we stopped at Hobby Lobby to browse around. We got in the water early & Ryder, of course, found a basketball. (photo above).

>>> Oh, and it is Ankylosing Spondylitis Awareness Month so there, read what I just said and complained about my disease above & google it if you want haha. I shared some facts on my Insta account (@ashleysloan7) but I am too lazy to share here. Enough of that!

Oh, and on a side note, Kevin was still in Dallas for the Final Four basketball tourney…he came home on Tuesday the 8th.

>>> OOOH & it was Katinka’s 5th Birthday on Sunday, April 6th, actually. Unfortunately for her, it was General Conference & Ryder & I spent most of the day at my parents so her birthday was a little lame. We celebrated a day later with some dog treats compliments of my mom & dad! Ryder was interested in her treats… (photo above).

>>> I organized some of my childhood stuff in my basement. I love labeling containers & organizing everything into tubs in my basement haha. I spent time organizing my Beanie Babies…yes…I have a tub of of over 100 and most of my American Girl stuff. I had the Samantha doll! Man, whenever, if, I ever have a daughter she is getting HOOKED UP with all my stuff! It will be fun to play with all that stuff again! It really is fun haha. I spent a long time organizing it lol. (photo above).

>>> Girl’s Night: We went to a girl’s night at Laura Neibaur’s house. She had…4 other friends there (Alyssa, Andrea, …) with all their kiddos. Some were visiting in town and from Utah, but grew up here in Fort Collins. We had a yummy curried chicken dinner & unfortunately I had to peace out early because Kevin had a church meeting that I needed to attend…more on that later. But it was FUN to see Laura & all her friends!

>>> Laura & all her friends (Andrea & Alyssa & their kiddos) & us, of course, went to Fossil Creek Park for a little park play date (photos above). It was fun again. The kids were funny together. I can’t believe we all got them to sit on rocks for a photo! It’s funny how something like a park is something you go to ALL THE TIME when you have kids but when I was younger or an adult without Ry, I didn’t think twice about it…for the most part. The park is awesome now!

>>> FHE: Kevin & I had a little FHE and watched some General Conference since Kevin missed it from his work trip. Then we went to McDonald’s…classy right? and got 99 cent cones…to party hard before Kevin is gone EVERY Wednesday night for his new calling! He is over the Teachers (Young Mens) in our ward now. He was released from his Stake Athletic Director calling as well as his Sunday School Presidency calling in our ward. Ryder wasn’t sure of the ice-cream…

>>> My mom & I had lunch at Fossil Creek Park on Thursday the 10th…yep we went there again! We also ran into my friend Kelli Rogers & her cute girl, Sophie! It was fun even though it was windy.

>>> In the evening, I went to a Relief Society Mid-Week Activity. We heard a lesson on visiting teaching & made some crafts. I had to leave quickly after though so Kevin could use the car to go pick up Anna from the airport…(long story with the car thing- but Kevin left his Mazda car keys in the rental car in his last business trip so his car was stuck in the airport parking’s parking lot for…a long time…)

Next up: Anna’s weekend in CO!


Remicade Infusion, Flat Irons with Bekah, & our General Conference Weekend



{ March 31st – April 6th, 2014 }

Each week, I look back, & I’m like, wow, I did a ton! This week was no different. First of all, March came & went & here came April, before we were even ready. Here is what went down…besides the usual (gym, errands (Old Navy, Super Target, King Soopers…), insurance crap, FHE (K’s turn!), hello Target, etc.)…

>>> I finished Reached, the last book in the Matched series…go read them!

>>> I cooked pretty dang good this week! I made orange chicken in the crockpot (along w/rice & potstickers) & made my very own first homemade chicken pot pie (recipe from my mom)! Kevin thoroughly enjoyed both which always makes me happy.

>>> Ryder enjoyed his swim lessons! Woohoo! I just love to take him swimming. He is so fun! He is getting way more into splashing…I may have to consider wearing swim goggles…HAHA.

>>> REMICADE INFUSION!!! Love my biologic Remicade drugs :) I definitely look forward to getting them every 2 months to keep my arthritis under control. I have the disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis which is arthritis of the spine + random joints too. I think I had a little flare up from February to April because randomly my big toes & thumbs would take turns hurting. The toes were more ANNOYING than anything but when my thumbs hurt (on my hands) it was very frustrating because it hurt to text, type, or do anything. Horrible! I need to talk to my rheumatologist about this when I have my next appointment. I hope I don’t have this happen again. It would be my first flare up since on Remicade…my miracle drug! Also, my SI joint got super tender & hyper sensitive that for a couple of days where it hurt to sit AND definitely even touch…like a light scratch…HOLY CRAP. Also need to talk to Dr. Levine about that!!! I started reading The Secret Keeper at this appointment. After my infusion, Ryder & my dad & I ate a quick bite at Subway. I’ve eaten there after 3 infusions so far haha. I always like to eat lunch and drink a bunch of water after because sometimes I get headaches & eating and drinking seems to help!

Ohhh…& guess what? I MET A GUY WHO HAS ANKYLOSING SPONDYLITIS! The only people I know who have it are relatives…well, I was at the gym checking Ryder out of daycare when one of the guys working there asked me about what I did to myself again (rib issue) so I told him “I bruised my ribs and strained my chest muscle ORRR if it doesn’t get better it may be a weird arthritis thing I have…sooo…” Then I could tell by his reaction that he had something too, like he said, “Wait, what do you have?” & I go…”What do you have?” & he said, “Ankylosing Spondylitis!” So I was freaked out. He is probably about my age so it is weird to meet someone else who has it who isn’t like…a grandparent age because honestly, when I get my Remicade infusions everyone is at least…20 years older than me, at the very least haha. I have been the youngest person in there every time…lol. So we talked about our disease & I would love to talk to him more about it but then he had to help other kids get in & break up fights…but we have talked since about it here and there! He got diagnosed when he was like 11 years old. CRAZY!!! I was like, “That is why when I first started working out I would come limping in here!!!” HAHA. He was like “OH yeah, I’ve had times when I had to limp too!” So I’m really pumped I met someone with my disease but of course, I would never wish it upon ANYONE. So yeah!

>>> Bekah Wilkey, her baby girl Carmen, & I went out to Flat Irons in Broomfield (basically Boulder) for a girl’s night of shopping. We hit up Nordstrom, H&M (got Ryder some suspender shorts & grey skinny jeans), Forever 21, & some other random fun stores. We ate a classy Japanese food court dinner & topped the night off with some Red Mango froyo! It was SO delicious! I was actually very impressed haha. I’ve had froyo many places but I thought it was very good! We had a fun evening together & hope we can do something fun again sometime soon. Good times.

>>> Kevin’s flowers he brought home to me last week had a few survivors…so I put those few flowers in a jug & left them out to beautify the kitchen. LOVE having some flowers out! (photo above) It’s the little things!

>>> My mom & I went to Ulta & stocked up on makeup since we both got our 20% off coupons in the mail. Basically, that is when I go shopping for makeup. I stock up on my Bare Minerals haha. SO I never pay full price! Yes, not a ton off but it helps! Then on the way home, we stopped by at Water’s Way park & my mom & Ryder went down a little slide together haha (photo above). Ryder threw a fit when it was time to go. He loves the park!

>>> I snacked on some Hawaiian goodies my parents brought back from their trip in Hawaii (for spring break)! They brought back some Hawaiian Host honey glazed macadamia nuts, Hawaiian Host Maui Caramacs, North Shore Goodies Coconut Peanut Butter, & it is ALL DELICIOUS! Thanks mom & dad!

>>> GENERAL CONFERENCE WEEKEND: Kevin actually left for a business trip on Saturday, April 5th & returned home on Tuesday, April 8th so he missed watching General Conference with us. He was at the Final Four tournament with an account & doing business meetings & stuff. So Ryder & I watched the first session of Saturday’s General Conference at my parents house, however my dad was out of town on a different business trip so it was just my mom, Zach, Hunter, & Ryder & I. I worked out on the elliptical for a few talks & everyone else watched Ryder. Then I showered & watched the afternoon session at my house. After it ended, we all went out to Centerra to shop at Gap & Loft (trying to find swim shirts/hats for Ryder & a shirt to match a skirt of mine for Easter…then we ate at Buffalo Wild Wings. Ryder LOVED it & loved all the TV’s (photo above). Funny- Kevin was at the game we were watching! Then for Sunday, Ryder & I hung out at my parents house the whole day watching both sessions of General Conference. We hung out & had a good time. I looked through some things from my childhood, ordered some stuff online, actually got on Pinterest, Ryder played with his uncles, etc… It really was a great Conference though! I either listened REALLY well or was distracted by Ryder putting him in timeout haha so I guess it is a different experience with having a kid. I have re-watched a good amount of it but need to re-watch the rest so I can say I heard all of the talks really well without distractions! It was SUCH a good weekend! I love General Conference weekend!



Surprise Visitors in Town + Mom’s Birthday!


{ March 28 – March 30, 2014 }

Friday, March 28th, we had surprise visitors show up at our door…remember HERE? Well, Kelsi & her friend Arielle Harrison (friend from BYU) showed up, along with my mom, to our house! They had surprised everyone & just drove out to Colorado to surprise my mom for her birthday, since it was the following day. They stopped by for a quick visit & then had to hurry home in order to surprise dad and whoever else was coming home… Such a fun surprise!

Then on Saturday, March 29th, it was my mom’s birthday! Kevin watched Ryder so I could go to Hunter’s taekwondo…testing thing… Basically he got his first degree black belt & apparently had to work hard studying Korean (I think Korean haha), memorizing test questions/answers, & of course, the physical part of it with routines, breaking wood things, etc. It was cool! He did great! We decided Ryder wouldn’t be able to be quiet for a couple hours straight of taekwondo testing and after attending, I’m glad we didn’t try to bring him. He would have been crazy wanting to join the kids lol. Kevin & Ryder ate lunch & Ry went down for a nap.

Then my mom, dad, Kelsi, Arielle, Zach, Hunter, & I went to Silver Grill CafĂ© downtown. We had delicious…cinnamon roll French Toast! SO LEGIT. Go there and get some, for real! It was great.

Then during Ry-man’s nap, I read some of Reached (in the Matched trilogy). Score.

Then when Ryder woke up, Kevin & Ryder played baseball out in the front with a nasty old tennis ball Ryder found in our neighbor’s yard haha. It was ca-ute. Can’t wait to see them play catch every day, all day! I should probably work on my skills.

The Sloan family decided to all wear Tom’s. Tom’s for all!

For dinner, we met up with my family (dad, mom, Kelsi & Arielle, Zach, & Hunter) & the Puccetti’s & Cluff’s for dinner at Biaggi’s down at Centerra. They had delicious appetizer bread…wow…still thinking about it! Ryder probably ate some crayons and threw a ton of stuff on the ground…yeah…it was something like that. Oh, and we walked around a sculpture park that was nearby too.

Afterwards, we all met up at my parents so my mom could open her presents & do cake. We got her a shirt from Loft that she loves…I picked it out for her, since I wanted it. That’s how I pick presents haha. What do I want?

Then Sunday, the 30th, rolled around and Kelsi, Arielle, mom, & Zach joined us for Sacrament. Kevin had also invited a friend from work, Nick Gendill to church with us, so he was there as well. Then I had a presidency meeting, we got home taught, & we headed over to my parents for my mom’s home-cooked birthday din din with PATRICK! He snuck down from Boulder so he could join us for the night. Ryder loved hanging out with him and playing mini hockey & hanging out with all of the uncles and watching them play video games haha. It was a fun day!

Overall, a very good weekend!