Sunday, December 11, 2011

Keeping Busy!

It's been a little over a week since we've got the news that the IVF didn't work. We are doing pretty well and I've found that keeping busy is key. The less time I have to sit and think, the better!
Last Saturday Rhett took me downtown for a little retail therapy. He is so sweet just sitting and patiently waiting as I tried on clothes. I always think of the Brad Paisley song, "Waiting on a Woman" when he comes along. At the second store though I turned to him and said, why don't you go to a bar and I'll call you when I'm done. Needless to say, no arm turning was necessary there. Rhett made friends at Joe's and then Gibson's. We had a nice dinner together and then came home and Rhett made me do a fashion show with all my new purchases. It was such a fun day!
Yesterday Rhett and I did a pub crawl called TBOX. The twelve bars of Christmas. We got all dressed up in tacky gear and hung out with some friends from school. It was a lot of fun. We are just doing things we can't do when we have children some day. I know we still feel sad, but we are just trying to count our blessings everyday and live in the moment. We are both excited to spend time with our families over the holidays. We will be spending Christmas in Ohio and New Year's in Arizona. We have a lot to look forward to and we know that God has a plan for us, it just isn't on our time schedule, so we are trying to hand Him the wheel, buckle up, and enjoy the ride!

Here are some pictures from the bar crawl, none of the pics of us together turned out that well, so I put one of Rhett and one of me!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dawn of a New Day

So I've been awake since about 5, I've already taken the dogs on a long walk and straightened up a bit so now I'm sitting here alone in my thoughts, snuggled up on the couch with my lil man Bauer, as Boomer sits in his window perch policing the neighborhood and listening to the falling rain.
As I sit and think and reflect about yesterday's news a wave of sadness rolls over me but I also feel somewhat calm too. It doesn't seem fair that this keeps happening to us, but I also think that there is a reason it didn't work, there was probably something wrong with the embryos and it wasn't in God's plan for them to grow. Part of me freaks out, I'm already 30, each day I get older, making my fertility problems worse, and I snowball into a a bunch of stressful scenarios. On the other hand, I haven't given up hope that this will happen for us someday, people get pregnant when they're 50 these days, so I know I have more time. Waiting for when it's our time just sucks, but I must say, I've gotten used to waiting, so what's a little more time?
Rhett came home last night, wrapped me in a hug, and poured me a glass of wine. What the hell, I thought, I can take a break from my fertility-friendly diet. We went out to a bar near us and just sat and talked. It was just what I needed. Rhett always knows what I need and I am so grateful for him. Even though he is mourning too, he puts on a strong face, and is my rock. We've decided that we need to let fate play it's role for a while. We can't afford to do anymore IVF without any insurance coverage, so we're hoping it might happen for us when we least expect it. I plan to continue my holistic methods with acupuncture, yoga, and a healthy diet ( I am going to drink coffee every once in a while though, I owe it to myself and I miss it!) and see where it takes us. We will have good days and bad ones, moments of strength and weakness, but God-willing we'll always have each other. We have the sweetest parents, fantastic siblings, adorable dogs, and amazing friends. We don't have children, but we sure do have a lot.

We may not have it altogether, but together we have it all!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Negative is my least favorite word

Negative pregnancy test. The words keep ringing through my head, I didn't think that's what I'd hear at all. Rhett and I were so excited for today and I'm sitting here in total shock,not knowing what to feel or what to do. I can't help but have a little moment of self pity. I know we have so many blessings in our life but all I've ever wanted is to be a mom, and it's feels so unfair that for 3 and a half years we've been robbed of this right. I don't even know where we'll go from here or what our next step will be. I just wanted to thank you all so much for your kind words, your thoughts, and prayers. I am so thankful for all of you.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Waiting is the Hardest Part

It has now been 8 days since the transfer and I haven't blogged since last Monday so I guess I need to get everyone up to date...

We were able to do the transfer as my lining grew to 11 mm which is wonderful. The clinic was running really behind that day, so we had to wait quite a while. We didn't mind though. We were just so excited to be able to go through with the transfer. Everything went well, we were sent home with next step instructions, and told to make our appointment for the pregnancy blood test for Friday, December 2nd. I came home and was pampered by Rhett and my mom for the remainder of the week. My mom cleaned the whole house and made a lovely Thanksgiving meal.There were many laughs shared between the three of us, and I felt totally at ease. It was so great having so much together time! I'm so blessed to have such a great family.

I went back to school this past Monday and have been so tired! I know it's just the getting back into the swing of things, and the fact that I was on bed rest all break and now on my feet a ton more at school! It has seemed as though the days are just dragging by, I can't wait for Friday to come! Of course I'm nervous too but I'm staying positive and telling myself it will be wonderful news. I get the blood test at 9 a.m. but won't know the results until later that day. Please keep praying and sending your thoughts! Love to you all!

Here are some pictures from transfer day!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


T-day is upon us, not Turkey Day just yet, but transfer day. The past couple days have been good, but I can't lie and say I haven't been a but anxious to see what is going to pop up on that Ultrasound screen. I have gone to acupuncture a few times, had a blood-enhancing massage, and been practicing an eastern healing technique called a "moxa stick" that was given to me by my acupuncturist. It looks like a cigar and you light it and hold over your stomach and turn it in a clockwise motion, just not too close as not to burn yourself! It's purpose is to bring blood to that area to build up the lining, so here's to hoping all these things that I've been trying have worked and we'll get the green flag to do our transfer today. I received the call yesterday and we are to go into F.C.I. at 11:45 for our ultrasound and then if all looks well we will do the transfer at 12:45. I am very hopeful and trying to stay as positive as I can and not let my mind wander to the dreaded "what if" questions and just live each moment at a time. I am going this morning for acupuncture and then we are going to grab some breakfast and head into F.C.I. If you get a chance around 11:45 central time, please send us a prayer, good vibe, positive thought, or whatever it is you might practice. I've felt all your positive energy and prayers and I can't thank you enough! Go team snow babies... rounding third and headed for home!?!
Here is a pic of the moxa stick!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Full of Good Intentions

When everything was going fine and dandy with our cycle, it was so easy to be positive and upbeat. It's the times where things are shaky that it takes a little more effort to find balance within myself and think happy thoughts. As we await our Tuesday Ultrasound to find out if the transfer will occur, it is easy to let the little demon named anxiety rear it's ugly head. With the help of my wonderful husband and other supportive members of my family and friends, I am remaining as positive as I can and thinking and visualizing happy thoughts and results.
I feel so blessed to have come upon the holistic fertility center I go to called, "Pulling Down the Moon." This place has become a second home to me during these trying times. They offer a wealth of fertility services such as acupuncture, yoga, nutrition, massage, and reiki. I have done all services but the reiki (but think it sounds cool!). When I walk in they know my name and the incense, friendly smiles, and soothing music instantly puts me at ease.
This past weekend they held a tree trimming event at Brookfield Zoo where you create an ornament and place your special intention inside. Rhett and I had a blast making these and going to the zoo to hang them. It felt good to release our intention out into the world and know that many others share our hopes and dreams of parenthood as we saw the many other decorated ornaments on the tree. This couldn't have happened at a more perfect time for us. It filled us with hope, joy, and the spirit of Christmas.
I know that I cannot control the fate of this cycle, I can control my attitude. At yoga today I shared our story and feeling the support from the other women was touching. I know I will be devastated if this cycle fails, but I refuse to give up. We will create our own, perfect child in time. It's finding the acceptance that we must wait til it's our time that's tough. Thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers. So many people have reached out and sent heartfelt messages, texts,and calls. Your kindness means more than you know. Please keep praying that Tuesday is the day our wish comes true...

With Love,


Here are some pictures of our ornaments. On one we wrote; "Hope, love, faith, and blessings. The other says, Dreams Really Do Come True."

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Walking a Thin Line

As you probably remember reading from a previous post, "Perfect 10" my uterine lining was looking nice and thick and everything was going as planned for our scheduled transfer on the 22nd. However, this past Wednesday I went to the doctor and my lining had gone down to 8mm, which is good, but obviously not as good as my beautiful 10mm lining from the previous week. We want a nice, thick lining so that there is more room for our precious little snow babies to implant. The doctor and nurse didn't seem to concerned with this change of events, saying it was so slight, and my lining still looked great and we were set to go for our transfer. I wasn't so satisfied with this answer and requested to come in for another Ultrasound yesterday. I am glad that I did, because my lining has continued to shrink. Now it is only a 6.9. They can still do the transfer but obviously this is not the ideal lining, and if it continues to go down next week, we won't be able to do it at all. They did put me on an additional estrogen pill in the hopes that it will thicken up by Tuesday's transfer.
The plan is for me to come in an hour before transfer so that I may have an ultrasound to look at my lining. If it looks good, they will go ahead and thaw the embyros, if not, we will have to cancel the transfer and start all over.
I am trying so hard to stay positive, but it's hard. I was completely blindsided by this and feel so helpless, all we can do is hope and pray. Rhett is trying his best to keep me grounded and settled as he always does. I guess all we can do is wait. Please pray for a thick lining for these little ones, they want to come home :)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Let the Relaxing Begin!

This past week was parent/teacher conference week. For those of you that are teachers, have been teachers, or are close to a teacher know the craziness that is conference week. I had conferences every day after school, which left me feeling very tired each night, but also fulfilled. It is a joy to see parents light up when you say something nice about their child, to see that proud mama or daddy look, when you confirm what they already know, their child is wonderful. I can't wait to someday be on the other side of that conference table and hear praise for our perfect children too.
Now that being said, when 3:40 hit yesterday I am not going to lie and tell you I didn't jump for joy and rush out of school to let Thanksgiving Break begin, because, well, I did! This year we have today and all of next week for Thanksgiving Break (and in some cases, i.e. me, bed rest). The transfer is this Tuesday the 22nd, at around 12:45, but we'll get the exact time on Monday, so I'll be sure to post that info when I know it. I am so looking forward to, as it states in my phone calendar, "the day we get preggers" but in the meantime I have a few days filled with acupuncture, abdominal massage, lunch with a yoga friend today, and if I feel so inclined a little cleaning... don't hold your breath on that last one.. haha.
I laid in bed this morning trying to fall back to sleep from my 5:00 a.m. wake-up call from two furry members of my family that will remain nameless... when I began to think about all I am thankful for this year, my family, friends, job, house, and all the people that have played a role in our infertility journey, I thank you all for being you and supporting us in all aspects of our lives. I just know that next year when I am giving thanks there will be a new member or members of our family that Rhett and I will be especially thankful for!

Happy Friday!


Friday, November 11, 2011

Perfect 10

This week was a crazy one filled with many dates with the copy machine and getting to school at 5 a.m. three days in preparation for parent/teacher conferences next week. Among all the craziness I squeezed in my weekly doctor's appointment and it was great! My uterine lining was nice and thick at 10mm and all my blood levels were right on track. So we're moving along quite nicely! We're getting so excited to welcome our little snow babies home so soon! Thanks for all your kind words and prayers, please keep them coming.

My next doctor's appointment is Wednesday and I start my Yoga for Fertility Phase 2 this Sunday. I'm excited to get to know some new faces and hopefully see a few old as well! Rhett and I are looking forward to a relaxing weekend together. Happy Friday to you all!

Monday, November 7, 2011


This past weekend my mom was in town and we had a great time! We went shopping, ate out, and laughed a lot as we always do when we get together. My mom is my best friend and I cherish our time together so much! I was sad to see her go but happy knowing in two weeks from tomorrow, she'll be here again! As she left I told her, "next time you see me, I'll be pregnant!" She is coming in the night of the transfer and although I won't know the outcome yet, I have good feelings that this is going to work!

My last yoga class was on Sunday and as usual it was wonderful. Yesterday's focus was about finding bliss. It was explained to me by my teacher in a way I had never thought of bliss before. Finding our bliss, our innermost layer, means to be at peace in what's going on in our life. It doesn't always mean that we are at the happiest point in our life, but more at peace and acceptance of what cards we've been dealt and being at harmony with it. As we were doing our poses, the weirdest thought/prayer came to my mind. A prayer of thanks to God was sounding through my head as I moved from downward dog to a forward fold. I thanked God for giving me infertility. Had I not, I would have never met these wonderful women, had grown to know myself better, or grown closer to Rhett. I am at peace now, with my two pregnancy losses and failed IVF. I am at peace with the struggle, the feelings of anxiety, and anger. I now know that this is God's plan and every day, every struggle has helped formed me into the mother I am to be. It's taken three years to get here, but I think I've arrived, I've found my bliss.

Here are some pictures with us and my mom and good family friends, the Truitts! I had a blast shopping with Gina and my mom and dining with the boys at Joe's Stone Crab!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Moving Right Along!

Yesterday I went to FCI for Ultrasound and Blood work and all looked great! They were checking to see if the pill and shots had suppressed my hormones sufficiently. Next stop... estrogen patches and baby aspirin. The estrogen patches increase uterine lining and the baby aspirin can increase blood flow to the ovaries, and can also prevent blood clotting, which can cause miscarriage. I go in next Wednesday for another Ultrasound and blood work to see if my uterine lining is getting thicker! We want a nice thick wall for those lil snow babies to burrow and make a home!
This Sunday is my last Yoga for Fertility Class, but I enrolled in phase 2 and can't wait to continue on this journey. I've gotten to know some really amazing women and learned a lot about myself. A friend at work had a yoga for kids book and we've started doing a few moves a day and the kids love it! Yoga has become such a postive part of my life, I want to share it with others!
I'm getting so excited for the transfer to get here but I'm enjoying the journey up to it. I'm trying to eat as healthy as possible (I really miss my coffee) and being as stress-free as I can. I actually enjoy going to the fertility center for monitoring. Through my several cycles I've gotten to know a lot of wonderful nurses, sonographers, and doctors. Everyone I've met along the way has played an important part in our journey and I'm thankful for their warmth and kindness.
My mom comes this weekend and I can't wait to see her, it's been too long. Happy Almost Friday everyone!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Me Against the Fish

This past week I decided to try and master cooking fish at home for Rhett and I since I'm making more of an effort to incorporate it into my diet. It's funny how many people have told me they about fell out of their chair when they heard that I tried fish.. the things we do for our kids (or future kids). Anyways, I digress. So I go to Whole Foods and I buy the fish from the counter and the guy tells me he de-boned it and all that good stuff. I come home, ready to make a delicious dinner (with a little help from my girl, Giada) I brush one side with olive oil and then flip it over to brush the other side when GASP! (I think I actually said something else) the entire side was covered in fish skin... gross! You see, when I'm eating fish I keep trying to tell myself I'm not actually eating a fish, but that scaly sight made it harder to believe my delusions. So I grabbed by knife and tackled it as best I could ( in-between gags, of course). Good news is, it turned out really good! I think I'm over the initial shock and ready to tackle it again.
I went to see my nutritionist again this past weekend and got some more really great advice! She helped me think of more ways to incorporate protein into my diet and advised me against most canned goods besides a brand called "Eden's Organics" due to the fact that most cans are lined with a chemical called BPA which I'm sure you've heard in recent years getting a bad rep for causing hormonal disturbances in our bodies. I had a relaxing acupuncture treatment and a great yoga class today! I love the time with fellow women who truly understand how I feel. It's a great way to vent, grow, and further learn the yoga technique. Next week is my last class and I really hope to enroll in Fertility for Yoga Phase 2 with my yoga buddies, and continue our journey together! I've felt like I'm dealing with stress much better and have a more positive outlook on life and our pursuit towards parenthood. This week we learned meditation and I'm excited to practice this new skill this week.

23 days until transfer!! I can't wait for our three little snow babies to come home! There's no place like home! There's no place like home! There's no place like home!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Third Time's a Charm!

Today I had my ultra sound and blood work to see if my hormones have been suppressed from the birth control pill and if it's time to start the shots and.... all looked GREAT! We start our first round of shots tonight and I can't wait to get this ball rolling! I had a great, optimistic feeling in the doctor's office and I texted Rhett and told him this. He said, "Third time's a charm." I think he may be on to something, third IVF and 3 embies? Sounds likes a recipe for success!
Check back often for updates! I go for ultra sound and blood work again next Wednesday! I can't wait for November 22nd! My mom is coming to help take care of me on bedrest and make sure Rhett gets a proper Thanksgiving dinner! I don't think she knows what she signed up for, there may or may not be a dog eared copy of southern living waiting for her upon her arrival! Haha, she's the best!
Have a good night everyone and please keep your amazing thoughts and prayers coming our way!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Week in Review and Pots and Pans Too!

This past week has been filled with lots of happenings! Rhett's mom and dad have been in town since August and are headed back to Arizona tomorrow so we went out for a nice dinner to a french restaurant called Mon Ami Gabi. Rhett and I were actually doing a rating there for a secret diner program we do, and our coordinator let us bring them along! It was nice to be able to catch up and spend some time together!

On Saturday we had our niece, Lucy's first birthday! It's hard to believe she was born a year ago! The party was great and we got to play with lots of adorable babies. I kept thinking about how this time next year Rhett and I will hopefully be bringing our little one or ones to Lucy's second birthday party! We're less than a month away now from our transfer and we're getting so excited! I go tomorrow to the doctor for an ultra sound and blood work to see if we can stop the pill and start some shots! It will be here before we know it!!!

In other exciting news Rhett bought me some new stainless steel pots and pans!! My nutritionist advised me that using non-stick (as I have for years) is actually not good practice because after a while it can start to break apart and the chemicals can get in the food you're cooking causes further hormonal disturbance, which I don't need! She also said that when using nonstick you use less olive oil to cook with, and right now she's been having me work on increasing my intake of healthy fats into my diet. When those pots and pans came I was so excited, I was like a kid in a candy shop! My brothers and I used to tease my mom about her obsession with new pots and pans, but now that I'm an adult I totally get it... when did I grow up?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Yoga, and Needles, and Fish? Oh my!

I've been meaning to blog all week, but here it is Sunday already and I am just now sitting down to do it! It has been quite an eventful week and I'm excited to share the latest developments. So take a seat (seriously, sit down for this), grab a cup of coffee in my honor (since I no longer drink it...sigh) and be ready to be floored!
In my last blog I stated that I started seeing an acupuncturist again and that I was going to be seeing a nutritionist this week. My acupuncturist and nutritioist had highly suggested that I incorporate fish into my strictly 17 year vegetarian diet. I obviously was not pleased by this news, but I want a baby more than anything in the world, so if they told me shaving my head and sleeping on the floor would do it, then I'd be a bald lady with a sore back, so I figured what the hell..
As many of you know, Rhett and I participate in a rating program for Lettuce Entertain You Restaurants. This week we rated Shaw's, which is a fine dining seafood restaurant, so I figured if I'm gonna do this, this is the place to start... I ordered salmon and drumroll please.... I LIKED IT!! Also, even better, I didn't puke!!! Rhett was so proud of me and I was proud of myself, if I'm going to be a mommy I have to put those little one's needs ahead of my own, so I thought, first step in the right direction!

The nutrionist gave me lots of great pointers and put me on four different supplements. I'm eating all organic, trying to cut out refined sugar, lots of protein, lots of sleep, and no caffeine! I had a few slip-ups this weekend (eating out gets me everytime, good thing we're on a budget and don't do it that often!) but today is a new day! Only 38 days til transfer!! I can't wait! I have it marked in my calendar as the day we get pregnant!!! I'm feeling so positive and ready! I just know we are going to be blessed! This Thanksgiving (even though we won't know the outcome yet) we will have even more to be thankful for! I'm off to Yoga!



P.S. Here are some pics from the week; my first fish dish, my sweetest day pizza Rhett brought home, I splurged and had one,tiny, little slice, and Boomer "doing" yoga. He says he likes, "downward facing dog"!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Going Granola

Yesterday as Rhett and I were driving out to see my brother-in-law, sister-in-law, father-in-law, and adorable little Lucy (we missed you Jan). I was telling Rhett about my second fertility yoga class and I was sharing what a wonderful experience it was again. I'm learning to find balance within my physical self and the world around me as well as creating relationships with the other wonderful women who are on the fertility journey with me. I feel more positive and in control and am really digging this zen-like feeling! In conjunction to the yoga I have begun acupuncture again and really love this relaxing experience. She suggested I see the nutritionist, and I meet with her Thursday and I'm excited to hear what she has to share. The more I've been reading about the eastern way of thinking, I'm prepared for her to tell me that my 17 years of vegetarianism aren't helping my cause. I will do anything to have a baby and keep it in there for 9 healthy, happy months, and would even consider trying to incorporate fish and maybe even meat (I'm gagging writing that) but a baby is more important to me than my beliefs against harming animals. I'm hoping she will say it isn't necessary, but I'm keeping an open-mind. I told Rhett he probably thinks I'm going all "granola" (hippie) on him but he thinks it's really cool how I'm adopting a new way of thinking and the most positive mindset possible. There is a saying painted on the wall in my yoga studio that has become my daily mantra.

"I am happy, I am healthy, I am whole."

Me and Rhett getting some parenting practice with adorable Lulu!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Newfound Yogi

All my life my preferred form of exercise has been good old, heart pumping, push-to-the limit, sweat-evoking cardio. Whether it was running, taking a spin class, or going on the eliptical at a good speed, I never really felt like I was getting a work-out unless it involved cardio of some kind. However, as I've been doing a lot of reading on infertility, high impact exercise can actually negatively affect your fertility. Walking and yoga are linked to helping fertility much more than any kind of cardio. Upon reading this I decided that I would no longer do cardio (not that I've been to the gym much anyways) and embark upon a yoga journey to help my body be in a restful and healthy state prior to my embryo transfer in late November. My journey started today!

As some of you may have read in previous postings, I am taking a six week "Fertility for Yoga" class at a holistic center for Fertility called, "Pulling Down the Moon". I will be taking it every Sunday for an hour and a half and I had my first class today. I went into the class excited and nervous, not sure what to expect. It exceeded all my expectations. We practiced yoga positions to acheive balance, create space, and increase bloodflow, but most importantly... we shared. We shared our struggles and feelings about our journey with infertility. This was the first time I had really got to hear and give support in a small group setting with other women who have gone through similar situations. All of our stories were very different but the helpless, frustrated, confusing, feelings were not that far off. It made me realize Rhett and I are not alone and so many other people out there are going through just what we are. I admired the courage and strength of the other women and I can't wait to get to know them and the wonderful world of yoga more in the coming weeks!


Saturday, October 1, 2011

New Horizons

As we begin our journey into another IVF cycle we are filled with hope and anticipation. We are gearing up for what we hope to be our most monumental life change yet (probably ever) and have also been blessed with another life change...

Rhett put in his resignation at his current job yesterday and will begin a new job this Monday. It was an offer that he couldn't refuse and will be a wonderful opportunity for our current and future family. We both feel so blessed to have had this opportunity be bestowed upon Rhett at such an important time in our lives. Rhett's dedication to providing for our family never ceases to amaze me. He puts in 110% at his full time job and then works a part-time job as well on the weekends to bring in more money for our baby cause. I have the best husband in the world and I pray everyday that I can grant him his dream of being a daddy someday very soon. He will be the most adoring, caring, and attentive dad. Our snow babies have no idea how lucky they are. Rhett, I love you and I'm sorry for bragging about you, but you make me so happy, and I'm so proud to be your wife!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Here we go!!

This Monday Rhett and I went to see our Doctor at the fertility clinic for the first time since March. It was good to be back and feel like we are taking charge again and plowing forward. We got all our tentative dates and I went yesterday for my first ultrasound and blood work. All looks good, so I was started on birth control pills ( I know seems counterproductive, but it suppresses hormones and gets the uterus ready for the many meds I (read, Rhett) will start injecting in me in late October. We are set for a embryo transfer date of November 22nd, if all goes as planned! Our Thanksgiving will once again be spent in our small condo with a turkey for one ( as many of you know I'm a strict vegetarian of about 17 years) as I will be on bed-rest the days following the transfer. It works out great though because I won't have to take any days off work!
As I prepare for the big day I'm starting to get my body ready for welcoming our three little embies. I'm trying to eliminate processed and fried foods and eat lots of fertility friendly foods. I'm cutting out all running (even though it hasn't happened in a while since I stopped training) and I am starting a Yoga for Fertility class every Sunday with other women going through the same obstacles we are. I'm excited to start practicing yoga and hopefully make some new friends too! I think being around other people who are facing similar struggles will be a great source of comfort.
In the coming month and a half I'll do my best to update often and keep you all in the loop! Please start praying your hearts out that this is the last time we go through all this and that God will bless us with the greatest gift in the world!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Breaking Bank for Baby(ies)

For the past three years the hardest part of our infertility struggle has definitely been (obviously) the trying and trying to have a child to no avail. I would say the second hardest part has to be the financial toll it takes on you as well..

Making a baby is supposed to be free, but we've quickly learned that if any obstacles are put in your way, i.e. when infertility rears it's ugly head, it is anything but. At Rhett's past job we were fortunate enough to have amazing insurance that covered almost everything with very small deductibles. Now though, we find ourselves with no insurance for infertility. I find it infuriating that insurance policies can get away with not covering this, to me having a child is a normal human function, and if it can not be performed should be treated as any other medical condition. I don't think that they would deny someone mental health services. Not being able to have a child definitely takes it's toll on your mental health. Pay up now insurance, and save yourself money down the line... anyways, I digress.

Rhett and I have three "snow babies" (as we like to call them, the technical name is frozen embryo, I like snow baby) and have decided to do a frozen cycle and put them all in and pray for the best. With no insurance coverage we will be paying for everything out of pocket, which is going to make us tighten our belts significantly, and definitely impact our lifestyle ( I guess I have to start cooking and stop shopping). We are willing to take on this financial burden to fulfill what to us, is our biggest life goal. Endless nights of mac n cheese, redboxes, and a last season's clothes will be a distant memory when we have our little precious baby or babies. So here's to a tight budget and a bright future!

Friday, September 9, 2011

My Next Thirty Years...

I remember listening to the song "My Next Thirty Years" by Tim McGraw when I was younger and thinking 30 sounded old, and well so far off... but here I am sitting at my kitchen table drinking coffee (took the day off work)and realizing that 30 wasn't so far off after all. I am it and it is me.
Looking back on my past 30 years I realize how blessed I've been, a wonderful mom and dad that love me, two great brothers, and the most adoring, caring, supportive (and handsome) husband a gal could ask for. Now that I'm starting a new era I'm looking towards my next thirty years and I wonder what's in store for me. I hope and pray that soon God will bless us with a child, I'd like to pursue my dream of writing, and stop complaining (not sure which will be harder, the having a child or not complaining, ha).
One goal that you all know about and have supported me in, is my dream to run a marathon. It is with a heavy heart that I announce to you all that I've decided not to run the Chicago Marathon. There were many factors that came into play when making this decision, and believe me, it wasn't an easy one to make! When the school year started, I was working crazy long hours that was inhibiting me from keeping to my running schedule during the week. There were weeks that I was not running at all during the week and jumping in and running 16 miles on a Saturday. This in turn has caused me to suffer a lot of back and knee pain. In conjunction to the aches and pains, I'd been feeling more tired than I ever had in my life. I at first contributed this to chasing 6 and 7 year olds around again for 7 hours a day. After a while though, I realized this was a whole new kind of tired. After some bloodwork it was found my thyroid is not properly functioning. My doctor said that this can further negatively impact my fertility (really?!?) so I've been put on medication to help regulate this problem. My optimistic mom says perhaps this is the ticket we'll need to get preggers! So to make a long story short, it seems as though the intense work outs were not boding well with me, and I made what seems to me like the hardest, but most responsible choice I could. I can't thank you all enough for the generous contributions you made to support me, and please know 100% of your donations have gone to help sick children (and are tax deductible :) ) regardless of whether I run the race or not.
So on to bigger and better things...For my birthday, Rhett bought me a bunch of fertility books that we're going to read together and hope to start treatments again soon! Taking a break from treatments has been wonderful for us, it gave us time to relax, focus on us, and de-stress. Lately though, I think we've been getting the itch to take charge and plow forward again. So it's true what they say, one door closes and another opens... So cheers to my past thirty years and on to my

next thirty years filled with hopes, dreams, and maybe the pitter patter of little feet..

Monday, August 1, 2011

13 going on 30

This past weekend I ran 13.5 miles with my training group and although it was hot and my knees were hurting a little bit, I felt great. In between getting to know you chats with my fellow running group members I reflected on the current journey I'm on in life. For some reason or the other at about mile 7 I realized, I'm going to be 30 in a little over a month and I felt my heart flutter a bit. What about my life's checklist? I have so many prior to 30 check boxes unchecked, mainly my "be a mom" check box pulling at my heart the most. I realized that running a marathon was not ever on that list ( I swore only crazy people ran marathons) and although it won't be checked off prior to my 30th but will be 31 days after, so there's that.
At lunch with Rhett later that day I told him my epiphany while running and told him, although I'm only halfway through my training I feel empowered and accomplished. I CAN run 13 miles, I WILL run 26.2, and I'm almost 30. It turns out maybe I should add things to the list and check them off as I go, turns out focusing on what you can do is a whole lot better than what you can't. If if I can run 13 and I'm going on 30... then I can hopefully still check off that baby box someday, I believe in my body, maybe it and God just have a check list of their own.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Back to Reality

We arrived back from the sandy beaches and sunny skies of Puerto Vallarta late Sunday night to be abruptly faced with... the sunny skies and sandy beach of Chicago! The weather here has been really nice since we've arrived back home, and I've been enjoying the time back going to the beach with friends, enjoying the tunes of U2 at Soldier Field, and meeting Rhett for lunch in Oak Brook, where he works. So I guess that being said it's been back to reality for one us, that "one" definitely not being me.
Our trip was Wonderful! We left for the trip on Monday, June 27th and came back on July 3rd. It was seven days and 6 nights of pure bliss. Our resort was up in the beautiful mountainside of Puerto Vallarta. We spent our time relaxing by the beach and at the pool, drinking yummy frozen drinks, and dining at romantic beachside restaurants. It was so nice to spend so much quality time together and be totally and completely relaxed. I took a bit of a break from my running, so had to kick in full gear when I arrived back home. This Saturday my training group and I tackle 10 miles, the most we've done so far. We are in week 5 of our training, in 13 weeks I'll be tackling 26.2 miles! Thanks so much for everyone who has encouraged me with their words, donations, and love. Having this marathon has eased the pain of our journey with infertility, it has given me both focus and solace and made me feel successful with each mile further I go. I would want someone to help our future children if they fell ill, and it makes me happy to know I am making a difference. Much love to you all!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Summer of Selfish

I think that the word selfish to most of us, screams negativity. I do feel that sometimes being selfish is good, and a key to our sanity in fact. At times in life we start almost losing sight of ourselves and our own needs which negativitely impacts us, and in turn most likely those around us too.

Rhett and I have put our want to have a baby before our own needs and wants and haven't done much for ourselves in a while. So we have dedicated Summer 2011, as "The Summer of Selfish". We are doing things for ourselves, taking trips, and in cases spending money we probably should be saving, but hey, you only live once, right? We are kicking off the Summer of Selfish in two days where we jet off to Mexico for a week, and we can't wait! We are looking forward to relaxing and enjoying the "all inclusive" life for a week, followed by a few short weeks later we are headed to California for a friend's wedding in Sonoma, where we look forward to some Vineyard Tours and good times with friends!

Tonight we are headed downtown to a friend's wedding and so far it's looking like a beautiful day! I thank Rhett for my new spin on life, my type A, saving, planning, almost obsessive personality hasn't afforded me the luxury of being carefree,or dare I say, selfish? He's taught me to let go, and focus on all we have in life and call we can do instead of what we don't have and what we can't do. So I'd like to raise my coffee cup (as it's only 8:30 here but soon to be replaced by a Margarita in a few days!) to living life, to my wonderful husband, and to being selfish! Have you been selfish today?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

School's Out for the Summer!

Well ladies and gentlemen, today's the day we've all been waiting for (okay maybe not all, but I know that I certainly have ) SUMMER VACATION!!! Today was my last day of school with the kiddos. It was actually kind of bittersweet, I had an amazing class this year, and am really going to miss them, but I am very excited for the summer with our trips and relaxation!

On the way home today I had all these great plans, get my nails done, make an awesome dinner, etc. What did I do when I got home? Let the boys out and promptly fell asleep for three hours, I think the whirl-wind trip to Cincy for my grandfather's funeral combined with the craziness of end of year preparations finally caught up with me. I woke up to eat dinner with Rhett, as I rarely skip a meal, and now I'm winding down and getting ready to fall back to sleep again! I have the next few days to prepare for our trip, we have a wedding on Saturday, and then very early Monday morning we'll be headed to Mexico! I'm so excited I can hardly wait!! I'll be sure to continue to update now that I have more time, so stay tuned!

Friday, June 17, 2011

An Ode to My Papa

When I think about the wonderful, selfless, charismatic, kind-hearted man, that was my grandfather, I’m reminded of a quote by Erma Bombeck; “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would have not a single bit of talent left and could say, “I used everything you gave me.”

I am assured of two things; One, my papa is confident and aware that he used all his talents and exhausted every avenue to be the best person he could possibly be, and two, him and God are already best buds, as my Papa most likely found a common interest with him and struck up a conversation, (as he often did, the man truly didn’t know a stranger) and is most likely out on the beautiful greens of Heaven, playing a game of golf with God and other precious family members such as his father and brother that have gone before him.

Reflecting back on the life of such an amazing person brings tears to my eyes. My Papa wore many hats, and he wore them all perfectly. Perfect dad to his two sons, perfect grandfather to his 6 grandchildren and three great grandchildren, and WOW is all I can say about the kind of husband he was to my Nonnie.

Papa never thought of his needs and wants and always put others before him. He had a constant smile on his face, that despite how crummy a day you might be having couldn’t help but put a smile on yours. I have so many fond memories of him that warm my heart and comfort me during this hard time as I mourn his loss.

My childhood was filled with tons of memories of sleep-overs at my grandparents, birthday pool parties at their house, trips to Florida, and dinners out just because. My grandpa always filled my heart with joy. One memory that sticks out in my head is back in the day, before liquid restrictions and full- body scans at the airports, you could greet your visiting family right at the terminal. Wow, I kind of sound old, don’t I? Anyways, I remember coming out of that walk-way and seeing my Papa and Nonnie, and the welcoming looks they both had made me feel like I had to have done something right in my life to deserve to have someone feel that happy to see me. That was just how he was, he made everyone feel special, like they were the only one in the room. He constantly told my brothers and I how proud he was of us, and made us all want to make him prouder. He treated my Nonnie like a princess and made me want to search far and wide until I found someone that I could share the kind of marriage he had with her. I found that man, and was beyond thrilled when my Papa loved him as much as I do!

My Papa brought sunshine to this world, even the sing-song way he said hello when he answered the phone could brighten your day. There is never enough time in life, and we always wish for another day, and I feel this is definitely true of how I’m feeling about this great guy that I’m so lucky to have known. Today though, I celebrate the man he was and the legacy he’s left behind. I love you, Papa, thanks for being you.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Doctor R-U-N and Summer F-U-N

 So as I was walking into the gym the other day a car in the parking garage had a bumper sticker that read, "Running is Cheaper Than Therapy". This has definitely proven to be true for me. After everything that Rhett and I have been through I have my days that are harder than others, but having this race to train for has been an excellent outlet to vent on emotional days. I am back into the swing of working out and am feeling great. It's funny on days (such as today) when I am taking a day off from working out, I actually feel weird! I am not going to lie though, taking a day off is nice too!!

 There are days spent with a classroom full of 7 and 8 year olds that leave me exhausted and without much of a will to work out, despite how great it makes me feel! I do have three fall back motivators that have been helping me get my booty to the gym and rack up those miles:

1. The sick kids I'm doing this race for
2. My loving family and friends that have shown their support through kind words and generous donations!
3. The thought of getting into a bathing suit on OUR TRIP TO MEXICO!!

 Yes, ladies and gentlemen, you heard it right! We are finally going on a trip together! We booked it about a week ago. On June 27th we are headed to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico to stay at an all-inclusive resort and totally veg out on the beach together! We are so thrilled to take some time to just enjoy each other and relax! This will also be a lil celebration to kick off my summer vacation which will begin on June 21st, so the end is in sight! We started our ABC countdown this week and we only have 21 days left!!! So there is much to look forward to!!

 I have be terrible at blogging lately and vow to be better! So check back when you can, there will hopefully be more posts to read! Until then, happy Friday! I have Friday night in with a pizza, movie, and couch time with the hubs in my very near future and quite looking forward to it!!

Our last trip together, back in 2007!! Overdue? I think so!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A Snowy Birthday

 As I awoke Monday morning I looked in the mirror and noticed that my face was still peeling from the sunburn I received last Sunday, while basking in 80 degree temps, only to realize a few seconds later, that on April 18th ( Rhett's B-day) we have been "blessed" by a blanket of snow. Seriously, Chicago, really?
 I didn't let this sudden mood swing of weather get me down though, I had taken the day off to spend it with Rhett! He had to work a few hours in the morning so I rode out to Oakbrook with him and went into work with donuts in tow, to meet his coworkers. Then I ran some errands and we went to a lovely lunch at Wildfire and then to see the movie, "Source Code" which we both enjoyed. We had an awesome time spending some QT together. I am thankful for everyday I have with Rhett, and told Rhett on Monday I really should send his mom and dad a thank-you card, they do good work. So thanks, Bob and Jan for giving me the best present ever, your son!!


In other news, I think the manic weather changes have taken their toll on me. I started feeling under the weather yesterday and awoke today, feeling full fledged SICK. I called in sick this morning, two days in a week missing work, don't think I'll be getting "teacher of the month" ha. But I think sleep was what I needed. I slept until 10:30, and for those of you who know me well, this is not common practice for me! I'm hoping to feel better soon so I can run again tomorrow! Thanks so much for all your donations! I'm more than halfway there!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Spring Break!

 So yesterday officially began my Spring Break and I am so thrilled! Although we aren't going anywhere, I am still excited to relax, sleep in, and just do whatever I want! I wish my poor hubby could get a few days off too, he works too hard! I am hoping this summer he can take a few days off so we can go somewhere together.

 I'm officially back into the swing of exercising and I feel great! I wish it were warmer because running on the treadmill is really getting old, but temps in the 30's are taking over this weeks forecast, I did see temps in the 50's by next weekend, so I am pretty pumped about that! Rhett and I signed up for the Race to Wrigley in a few weeks, it's only a 5k but will be fun to run a race again, it's been a while! I've been mixing up my training with a combination of running and cross-training. This week I am going to be adding in some Bikram Yoga ( 100 degree yoga, it's amazing) and some spin classes. I am trying to slowly work my way up and take care of myself so as not to injure myself! Thanks so much to everyone who has donated, it is so touching and really helps to motivate me. On days I don't feel like running after a long day of work I think of those sick kids in a hospital bed and I get my booty to the gym! I've had my good and bad days since the miscarriage and I know Rhett has too, but over all we're doing great and just taking care of each other. I've tried to just count my blessings and not the things we don't have and it's made me realize we really are blessed. And just so you know when I'm counting my blessings, I count all of you!! You're the best thanks for reading and have a great Saturday night!

Some of you have asked for the link again ( I'll send an email soon!)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Life Goes On!

 One door has closed and another opened. We went to the doctor this week for the last time in a long while. We had the ultrasound and bloodwork and all looks good. I am officially no longer pregnant. So saying it "looks good" is kind of an ironic statement. When it became clear they we were going to lose the baby I think both of us just wanted the process to be done with. Just sitting and waiting for it to happen was the worst. We both are mourning the loss, but I think we grow stronger and more at terms with it everyday. We know there is a plan for us, and we are ready to stop fighting it and just let life happen.

 Speaking of life... guess who actually has one again? US! The nurse called me on Wednesday and said according to my bloodwork results I should be good to start training for the marathon. So ladies and gentlemen... I'm back! They said Friday would be the first day exercise would be safe so I dusted off my running shoes, laced those puppies up, and away I went. It has been awesome to be back in the game. I feel so amazing after a run and I am so excited to be training for the marathon! Here is my link again if you want to donate and support my cause!
I will also be sending out an email soon with the link! A shout out to Sarah, Rob, and Lucy for already donating! You are going to make some sick children very happy! In other news Rhett and I went out with our friends last night, it seems like it had been forever since we went out, had some adult beverages and let loose with our friends. It was so nice to see everyone and feel their love and support! We of course are saddened by our loss but feel like we are in control of our lives for the first time in a long time and it actually kinda feels amazing.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The "Race" to Recovery

 "It's not how many times you get knocked down, it's what you do when you get back up." I have heard this quote many times before and always loved it. Now, it takes on a whole new meaning. The past three years for Rhett and I have been a series of peaks and lows, of excitements and disappointments, and at times, let's face it, I felt like I was literally knocked down... hard. Each time we got back up, a little bruised but ready for another fight. But sometimes you have to look truth and the face and see, I might be fighting a losing battle here.

   After this last rather brutal "knock down" it was much harder to get back up, but once I decided to brush myself off, steady on one leg and then the other, I decided not to walk back towards the same fight, I'm going to run, in the other direction. When I say run, I mean literally. I have signed up to run the Chicago Marathon on October 9, 2011 and will begin training as soon as my doctor gives me the "go-ahead".

   For years I have set a goal of being a mom. We have tried and tried to accomplish this, but can't seem to make it happen. I decided to set on a mission to accomplish a new goal, one I have always dreamed of achieving, and one I know I can do. So I will be running, A LOT. I have chose to raise money for the Children's Memorial Hospital. It does not seem to be our time to have a child, so I would like to help the millions of children out there who are sick and are need of great care. I really am excited to take all of my energy and place it towards this goal. I can't wait to start! This is my donation page, every little bit helps!

  Rhett and I are going to be taking the rest of 2011 to do things together and enjoy each other more. We hope to take a trip, save some money (instead of give it all to fertility treatments) and relax and regroup. We plan to do another frozen cycle in January, but until then, it's us time. We will be parents some day, but right now we are on baby hiatus. To come to this conclusion was hard, to say the least but now that we've made it, we feel relieved, and rejuvenated and ready to put a bookmark in this chapter, and come back to it at a later time. I am feeling very quotie today! Here's another favorite, 
"Everything will be okay in the end, if it's not okay, well then it's not the end."

P.S. don't worry the blog goes on!!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Limbo Land

 Well, it's been a while since I've posted and it's time for an update. I went to the doctor on Monday for a follow-up scan. They detected a small spec that they believed to be the gestational sac in the uterus and couldn't detect anything anywhere else as far as the tubes go. I spoke with the doctor and he said although it can't be ruled out, it is looking that the pregnancy is in the uterus and not the tubes. He said he wanted to see me again on Wednesday for a further scan to keep monitoring me closely, as an ectopic can be a very dangerous thing if undetected. He also told me that given that I am 6 weeks along and the baby was only measuring at 4 weeks and no heartbeat could be detected, along with my low numbers, it was time to let go and cut the meds. The medications I am on were basically just prolonging the inevitable, a miscarriage. This was very hard to hear, but I think I knew deep down that this was coming. I left the doctor that day feeling numb, I couldn't even cry. To know that I just have to wait for the miscarriage to happen is awful and to also still not know if this ectopic is terrible too.

 Rhett and I just want answers and want some closure. We went to the doctor yesterday hoping to get a definitive answer and still have none. They did another scan and still saw the black area in my uterus but saw another small black area near my tubes. The doctor said the area near the tubes was most likely a cyst ( I have tons of those given my condition) and he is about 95% percent sure that it is in fact a uterine pregnancy. We have to go back on Tuesday for follow up bloodwork and ultrasound. Most likely by that time I will have already miscarried. The first time I had a miscarriage two years ago was horrible, but at least I didn't see it coming,  just sitting and knowing at any moment it will happen, is unbearable. Rhett and I had questions for the doctors as far as why this keeps happening, and they don't know. It is possible that it could be a gene that one of us is passing on, but would require very expensive testing to know and if we are there is not much you can even do. We left the doctor feeling like we aren't sure if we even want to go forward with all this. For three years this has been all consuming, in and out of doctors, waiting for test results, disappointments and heartache. We are playing in our minds what we want to do going forward. We may decide to do one more cycle, but will be taking a break for a while. We want a life back and to focus on us for a while. One day we will be parents, it just might not be in the way we had always pictured, and we will always have our two angel babies in heaven to watch over us. We know that God has a plan for us and this just might not be it. It is hard to think that could be the case, but you get to the point in life when you have to just surrender and know what's meant to be will be. I do know that I have the most amazing partner and for that I will forever be blessed. I married my best friend and as long as I have him, my life is complete.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Life Can Be "Nutty"

 So Friday is my favorite day of the week, well usually. I really could have done without this past Friday to say the least....

 I went into FCI to have my bloodwork and it came back at 999, meaning it only went up 170 points since my last visit. It should have doubled and been around 1,500 or 1,600. The nurse said this doesn't look promising. She also said these numbers can mean a failing pregnancy or it can still mean ectopic. I told her I have been having slight bouts of pinching feelings on one side, nothing severe though. At her advice I am going in tomorrow morning for a scan to see if they can detect anything. If they still can't see anything in the uterus, they will use a special tool to detect where blood flow is going, which will pinpoint where the pregnancy probably is located and then steps will be taken from there. I was digesting all this information on my way home and not really knowing what to make of it. Should I feel pregnant? Should I not? Should I feel angry, sad, scared? It is all very overwhelming.

  My mind still swirling with thoughts of my conversation with the nurse, I open the door to our condo to find Boomer had vomited all over and had chewed up countless plastic bags. He seemed to be feeling guilty more than anything, but as the night wore on he continued to vomit and it became bloody. At that point, Rhett and I knew he had to go to the ER. We knew our lil man was really "under the weather" when we walked in to find a Bernese Mountain Dog in the waiting room and Boomer did not so much as growl or turn his head. Boomer hates big dogs and tries to kill them any chance he gets. The vet did X-rays on Boom and found something suspicious. They sent us home and kept Boomer there to give him an IV and repeat the X-Rays. They called around 1:00 Saturday afternoon and decided that surgery really was  necessary. They went in and extracted wait for it..... A BRAZIL NUT. (hence the title for this post)  For those of you who don't know, that is the really huge one, that is shaped almost like a toe. He had ate it whole. I must have dropped one and he found it somewhere. We went to visit him last night after we saw "The Adjustment Bureau" (highly recommend it) and he was still heavily sedated. But he was wrapped in a blanket and cuddling with a stuffed animal. He looked so sweet. They said he is doing well and should be able to come home today but will have to wear a cone, poor guy! We are going to go visit him soon and check on him, I can't wait to have him back home.

 Thanks for all your comments, texts, and calls. I apologize I haven't really talked to anyone. I haven't really been up for talking, but knowing you are thinking of us, gives us great solace. Have a wonderful Sunday.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Waiting Game

 Waiting is something I have never been good at, and when it comes to knowing about what's going on with your pregnancy it's unbearable. We went to the doctor today hoping to see confirmation that the pregnancy is in the uterus where it should be and not in the fallopian tubes, but they couldn't tell either way via ultrasound because they said it is probably too early. They usually don't do a scan until 6 weeks, but because my numbers were so low, they wanted to do a scan early. So now I have to wait another week to go back and have the scan again. The doctor said my lining is very thick which makes him believe the pregnancy is in my uterus, but we can't know for sure until we see it, a "seeing is believing" kind of situation. He also said we aren't giving up, but with my numbers having started out so low, he would be surprised if this was a "good pregnancy" meaning, he doubts a baby will come of it, but is keeping hope. He said in his experience he had one woman with a beginning HCG of 16 go on to have a baby, and mine was at 15.8. So if our precious little one or ones make it, we will be setting a new record for the clinic. I really hope they do. I try to stay positive but am pretty upset today. Hearing those words felt like a dagger in my heart. We've worked so hard for this pregnancy, and I don't want to give up on it, but I also don't want to give out false hope. Please pray for us! There are miracles and I hoping we experience one.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Voting Time

 So I went to the doctor yesterday for repeat bloodwork and my HcG way more than doubled since Friday. My progesterone on the other hand, has gone down a bit. I have been getting hard masses on my skin after the injections and the nurse said it is possible it isn't getting absorbed all the way because it is building up in one lump spot. So now I am applying heat for even longer than normal afterwards to try and avoid this from happening. I didn't get a mass last night, so hopefully more was absorbed and my levels start to climb back up. Progesterone is an essential element to sustain a healthy pregnancy. The nurse said once we've had the ultrasound tomorrow we'll be able to know a lot more about the pregnancy and know what steps to take and adjustments to make if needed. I am very pleased with my hormone levels rising but am a bit concerned about the progesterone, so please pray for us, that it starts to rise again!

On a more positive note, I am really excited for the scan tomorrow and hope and pray to see great things! I thought it might be fun to take a vote on how many you think they are going to find in there!

One Bambino?

Or two?

I'll be sure to update tomorrow! Please keep the prayers coming!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

First Weekend with the Lil One(s)!

 So this has been our first weekend with baby(ies) well, the first weekend we knew we are preggers. It's been so fun knowing we are carrying around some very precious cargo everywhere we go! The doctor has put me on some pretty limited physical restrictions, no exercise, lifting, exerting myself at all really. So my solo grocery shopping trips have now become a couple's outing so Rhett can carry my bags! He's such a trooper though! He never complains and carted me all over town to get all the necessities. I have been trying to eat a wide variety of foods that the acupuncturist has recommended to help with blood flow to the uterus and of course foods that are good for baby(ies). Something else I have started doing is drinking  tea that the acupuncturist recommended for the first trimester. It is a special blend made by "Pulling Down the Moon" ( my acu. office) and it is a loose leaf tea. I came home from "Pulling Down the Moon" on Thursday so excited to make some delicious tea and realized I had no idea how to make loose leaf tea ( I have been a coffee drinker most of my life, but retired this habit months ago)! It came to my attention you can't just pour the leaves in the water and I clearly didn't have the proper tools. While we were out I told Rhett I think I need a tea tumbler, and 3 stops later still hadn't found one. He was bound and determined to help me find one... and carted me to an Argo Tea and I finally got the prized possession!

My new tea tumbler!

After all the running around, and no lifting on my part, I was still pretty tired! We came home, I drank some tea and watched some dvrerd shows! Not too shabby for the first saturday with the lil one(s).

  Today we went to church to give many thanks for our precious gift! All the kneeling and standing was making my back hurt already! I have felt some cramping/stretching which I am assured is normal! It was kid-central where we were sitting and made me so excited to know this time next year we would have another member sitting in our pew. After church I came home to lay on the couch all day and Rhett headed into work for a while. He came back with some pre-made salads from Whole Foods. One made of Kale, one of beets, and one of Spinach. He was so cute telling me how nutrious they were and said he was asking the opinions of the workers there on what to feed his pregnant wife. He also came back with three pregnancy magazines and some yummy pastas from Noodle and Co! What a guy! I think I am going to like this pregnancy spoiled thing an awful lot!
  I am headed for bloodwork tomorrow morning at my own request and am counting down the days until Wednesday's Ultrasound! Have a great night!
Kale Salad!

Beet Salad

Preggers Mags!!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Go baby!!!

Our lil one is already making us proud! I went in for bloodwork today and I more than doubled again! The nurse said this is wonderful news and I don't have to come Monday if I don't want to because they are happy with how my levels are proceeding. I decided to still go in Monday just for peace of mind. On Wednesday we get to see the baby or babies for the first time! They said we most likely won't see a heartbeat yet, but I am still stoked to see our precious babe! I keep pinching myself or think at any moment I'll wake up from this incredible dream! I can't wait to meet our angel in nine months and look forward to sharing this adventure with my darling hubby and best friend! He already kisses my belly good night! What a cute dad! This lil one is going to have the best daddy ever!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Up, Up, Up

So I went in for bloodwork today and my hcg has more than doubled which is great! The nurse said I still need to come in every few days to check levels to make sure they are doubling, but so far so good. She said we should be cautiously optimistic. Forget that, I am just going to be optimistic! Rhett and I are so over-the-moon with this tremendous blessing. We will continue to pray for our precious little one. It gives us great strength to know your prayers are with us too! You all have been such a great support with your prayers, calls, texts, and comments! We love you all! I head back to the doc on Friday, so I will update after with my new (doubled) number!! This baby will be a fighter!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

And the verdict is......

 PREGGERS! I got the call today and I had a positive pregnancy test! My HcG level ( the pregnancy hormone) was at a 15.8 and anything over a 5 is considered pregnant. My doctor likes to see at level of 25 or above, so I am a little on the low side right now. Me, being the worry wart I am, was asking the nurse, "Should I worry? Is this okay?" She told me she has seen women with as low as a 5 go on and have a healthy pregnancy, so don't worry. They will be having me come in and get my levels checked every few days to ensure they are doubling (which is a sign of a healthy pregnancy). She said sometimes in frozen transfer, hcg levels are slightly lower. I am not going to focus on the levels though, I am going to revel in the fact that we are PREGNANT! The words we have been dying to hear forever!
 Tonight we will be celebrating by going to our orientation for a food rating program we do. We go to restaurants and are "secret diners" where we rate food and service and get free meals! Can't beat it! So today, on our day of fabulous news, we get to go out and have a free meal! Thanks to everyone for your prayers, there really is power in prayer! Keep them coming that our levels double and that we have a happy, healthy pregnancy! I go get my blood drawn on Wednesday so I will keep you updated!!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Special Delivery!

 So, I think I forgot to mention that back when I decided to start this blog I decided that I had to have the care bear's suitcase that is the inspiration for this blog's title back in my possession. Seeing as how the original suitcase I had is now long gone, I went on the search to get the same one I had back then. I searched for a few days and found one on Ebay that is exactly the same as the one I had growing up! So I placed a bid and about a week later.. I won! I was so excited!! My idea is to pack baby or babies first outfit(s) in it to take to the hospital for when they are born! I hope that they enjoy this suitcase as much as I did!

 We had been running some errands yesterday and we came home to find the package had arrived, just in time for our good news tomorrow, perhaps? I was so pumped up and opened it right away, I am very in touch with my inner child! I told Rhett I have another one on the way, that's blue, you know, in case it's twins. He laughed and said he doubts our boy will like care bears, but Rhett didn't get his nickname "Teddy" for nothing!

 Tomorrow is the big day, as it gets closer I am starting to think about it more and more, but am trying to focus my energy else where to not get too anxious about it. We will be sure to let everyone know our (hopefully) wonderful news!!!

Here are some suit case pics:

The boys might think their new siblings are in there...

Friday, February 18, 2011

Long time, No Blog!

  I have only been at this blogging thing for two weeks and here I am already slacking! I do have  a good excuse though, to keep lifting to a minimum, I've been leaving my computer at school all week, I finally brought it home today seeing as implantation would have already taken place. So I figured I was safer now to bring it home for the three day weekend! I love myself some President's Day!!

 Well seeing as I haven't blogged since Monday I should probably give the update on what's been going on since then. To tell the truth, pretty much nothing! I went back to work on Tuesday and since then I have been more tired than I have ever been in my entire life! Like whole body aches, takes effort to move from place to place tired. I never had mono, but pretty sure this is what it feels like! I am thinking it is caused by the progesterone shots or maybe early pregnancy? Hoping the latter! I've been coming home after work and just crashing on the couch. My dear dogs and good friends, Chandler, Monica, Phoebe, Rachel, Ross, and Joey have also kept me good company. (Complete series of "Friends" on DVD= Best. Purchase.Ever). To be honest, I haven't even been thinking much about the pregnancy test one way or the other. I, of course am really hoping it worked, but have tried not to focus on it too much, because then it becomes all consuming! We go in on Monday morning for the blood pregnancy test and will get the call later that day, luckily I don't work that day, which just makes for a better environment for receiving such an important call. Last time, I got the call in between Parent/Teacher Conferences... yeah, that sucked!

 So I am keeping the positive thoughts and prayers and I can feel all of yours, keep them coming please! Have a wonderful weekend. I am waiting on Rhett to get home, and our pizza to arrive. Fridays nights are usually our night out but this exhaustion had other ideas and the p.j.'s have already made their debut. It's fine by me though, night on the couch with my three boys and two snow babies sounds like a divine date night to me!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

 I feel like a very lucky girl this Valentine's Day. I am at home on my last day of bed rest, and feel very relaxed. My mom and Rhett have taken amazing care of me! My mom leaves in about an hour and I am sad, but know I will see her again soon! I feel very blessed to have my two added Valentine's to take care of too, my lil snow babies. I am working on sending Valentine's love their way and asking them to stick for mommy!

 Bauer showed his love for Valentine's candy today. My mom left some chocolate on the bed for about 3 minutes to come grab a ziplock bag from the kitchen. She returned to find Bauer had ate about 12 pieces of chocolate, which as we know is just fabulous for our furry friends. I called the vet and they told me we were going to have to give the lil guy hydrogen peroxide via syringe (which due to all the shots, I had plenty of!) So with me holding him down, my mom shoved some good old hydrogen peroxide down his throat to induce vomitting. The vet said if it worked, no need to bring him in and thank God it worked, boy did it work! Thank goodness for my awesome mom for cleaning that up, bending and stretching are against doc's orders, so no cleaning for me for a while!! So that was an interesting turn of events today, never a dull moment with Mr. Bauer!

 I hope all of you have a wonderful Valentine's Day! Thanks for all your love, please keep the prayers coming! This time next week, we will know if our lil baby Valentine's made a home in mommy!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Welcome Home!

Well, I'm back! It has been two days since the embryo transfer, and I haven't blogged because I literally have done nothing but lay around, watching movies, and hanging with Rhett, my Mom, and Boomer and Bauer! It has been fantastic so far! I keep rubbing my belly and praying that our lil "snow babies" or "tot-sicles" both nicknames Rhett and I have for our once frozen embies will stick! Here is a little update on the day of the transfer!

Rhett's "welcome home" meal
The cute sign on our table!

My "welcome home" meal
 As you know the embryo transfer was scheduled for 11 on Friday, so Rhett wanted to take me to a nice breakfast beforehand. He took me to one of my favorite vegetarian restaurants ( isn't he great?) and right on our table was this sign that read "life". Ours was the only table that had this and we took it as a great omen! We just had to snap some pictures of our last meal before welcoming our lil snow babies back home! (above)

 After breakfast we headed downtown for our big procedure! We were told to arrive an hour before our appointment, but since I like to be early for everything we were about an hour and a half early! We sat and I started drinking my water bottle because your bladder has to be full for the procedure. We were called back by about 10:20 and they came and did an Ultra Sound, I was told I got the uterine lining of the day award, it was thick and a lovely home for our little snow babies to burrow in. Then the doc came in, showed us our adorable lil embies on the t.v. and in they went! So now we wait... and pray. So far I feel great, minor cramping from time to time, but I read this is usually caused by the uterine walls stretching and making room for baby or babies! I thank you for all the prayers, thoughts, posts, texts, and calls. You all are wonderful! Keep the prayers coming!
Our little "snow babies" Welcome to the fam!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Lucky Numbers

 I have always been one to believe in luck, how much I wasn't even aware until a second grader in my class pointed it out to me last week..

 I was sitting with a group of students when I brushed my hand across my face to find the itching nuisance that had been bothering me for the past ten minutes was in fact an eyelash! "Yeah, now I can blow on it and make a wish!" As I thought for a minute and blew it off my finger, a curious second grade girl asked, "So, what did you wish for?" "I can't tell you, or it won't come true", I replied. She looked at me thoughtfully and said, " You know, Mrs. Stenzel, you wish an awful lot. Before I knew you, I thought all you could wish on was shooting stars, but you have taught us we can wish on stars, when it's 11:11 and now eyelashes." I hadn't realized how "wishful" I was until then, but I think there is a lot worse things you can be!

 With that being said, I got the call today.. and tomorrow, February 11, 2011 my transfer will be at.... 11! 2/11/11 at 11? I'll take it! So say special prayer tomorrow for us at 11! I've got a new pair of lucky socks my mom bought me for Christmas (they ask you to wear really warm socks to help with blood flow) and my luckiest charm of all... Rhett! With these two precious items in tow, it can't be anything but fabulous!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A shot in the dark...

 This title doesn't refer to our chances of getting preggers this Friday, because I am very hopeful, more to the literal meaning this saying has taken in our lives! Our nightly routine in the Stenzel Household goes as follows:
1. crashing on the couch ( I won't even admit how early it is)
2. being woken up by my dear hubby to get a few shots  ( poor guy doesn't get home til 8, and in this neck of the woods, the sun as long since said it's good-byes, hence the "shot in the dark")
3. stumbling to the bed to pass out with a heating pad on injection site (we'll leave that site to the imagination)
4. waking up to a burning feeling and promptly turning off and throwing said heating pad to the floor.

I know, I lead an exciting life, watch out! But it truly will all be worth it. When the kids start to misbehave I'll show this a pic of what I had to endure to get them (totally kidding, of course, I think we'll leave the whole science aspect of their conception in the vault of things you never tell your kids) but in case you are curious here is one of my nightly shots..

The pictures don't do the needle justice, but take my word for it,  it's HUGE! This shot is the progesterone shot that Rhett gives me to help prep my uterus for the transfer. I get another shot in the stomache called Lupron to supress some hormones that we don't want to elevate. I wear nightly patches to increase estrogen, take baby aspirin to increase blood flow to the uterus, a prenantal, and an antibiotic (not sure why I take this). As you can imagine, I have a check list by the fridge to make sure I've done it all!
 In other news, my mini-vaca has officially begun. I took tomorrow off for some R&R, and am going to sleep in, have an acupuncture treatment, watch a chick flick, and just generally take it easy before the big day! Friday we have the transfer, and they will call me tomorrow with the official time. (I will be sure to post the time when I find out, so you know when to pray like crazy for us on Friday! ) My mom comes in town around 6 on Friday to help take care of me and hang out during my bed rest! I will be resting Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday and head back to work on Tuesday. I am not going to lie, really looking forward to some pampering!
 I was reminded today of how much I can't wait to be a mommy....
 We are starting a "Pennies for Patients" drive to help raise money for children who  have Lymphoma and Leukemia. I had the first and second graders gather around me and we talked about what cancer is and how we are going to raise money to help sick kids. They had sweet, innocent questions that I answered to the best of my ability and then I handed out their collection boxes and sent them off to pack up to go home. One little girl in my class came up to me and said, "I have 100 cents, Mrs. Stenzel!" I was thrilled she knew 4 quarters were a hundred cents. I then saw her go back to her seat and put all 4 quarters in her box. She had earned the money and brought it to buy lollipops at the end of the day, she said she would rather give it to sick kids instead... I love the innocence and love that children exhibit, how selfless and loving they can be, I can't wait to instill these values and beliefs in our future children... so bring on the shots, they will be distant memory when we hold our baby full of innocence, wonder, and love for the first time.