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It's been a while...

It's been a while...I haven't had anything to really talk about and well I've just been about the most unmotivated person in the world lately. However, I've decided that I need to get back to writing in some form and for now that will have to be a blog. It's good writing exercise. So, while I don't have any really fun updates here are some final letters for 2009.


Dear Chinese Food,

I'm sorry we have to break up. I can't take you hanging on to my ass and thighs anymore and while I adore you, the only way to keep you from hanging on is to cut all ties. I'm sorry. It's me, not you. I hope we can be friends again someday.

Longingly,
Orange Chicken Fanatic

Dear 24 Hour Fitness,

Please kick my ass for the next eight weeks. I will complain, and I will make grumpy faces at you but I want it I promise. Just do me a small favor and keep an elliptical machine open for me. All those New Years Resolution people are going to descend on you next week and it's going to be freaking scary for a while. Hopefully you and I can just muddle though and wait them out. In the end we're gonna be besties and I'm going to have a killer body for my birthday.

With aching muscles,
Mrs. Olympian 2010

Dear 2009,

You totally sucked it up 2009. Seriously. I had such great hopes for you and you let me down. I am so back to being an even number year fan. As this week ends and we head into 2010 I will remember you as pretty much the lamest year I've come across and that's saying a lot seeing as how I'm an old lady of 31 now. You should be ashamed of yourself 2009. The world deserved better than you. I deserved better than you.

Signed,
Even Number Fan

Dear 2010,

Welcome! I can't wait to meet you, get to know you and have an amazing 365 days with you. We can do all sorts of fun things together and I will love you bestest. Let's do this 2010, we can make a pact to be the best we can be (without joining the ARMY). And by best I mean that we're going to take these next 12 months to places we've never been. We're going to become runners (5k max though) and we're going to bulk up our savings account, and we're going to work on making all our dreams come true, even the one where I become a parent. Because let's face it 2010 I need to get my ass in gear and you're just the year to make it happen.

With hope in my eyes,
Even Number Fan

Notes to Self

Dear Self,

- Interval training makes you VERY tired. Get more sleep and eat a little more protein so you don't feel so tired. Drink that coffee too, it will save you at 8:00am.

- Even if the scale says you haven't lost weight, if you're having trouble keeping your pants up you're making progress. Perhaps a belt would have been helpful today? Remember that tomorrow. You are not a plumber, you never want to be mistaken for one.

- Go back to the gym today. It will be worth it even if you feel like gouging out the eyes of the perky level 10 elliptical rider next to you. Just because she's adorable and never breaks a sweat doesn't mean she's better than you.

- The beach in Hawaii is just 41 days away.

That is all.

Intervals

Today I will try interval training. This will be a new experience for me. I usually just show up at the gym, putter along for my 30-60 minutes and leave. I get a little winded, I get a little sweaty and I get my heart rate up but that seems to be all that's changing so I decided it's time to try something new, time to step it up.

It's frustrating to go to the gym consistently, in addition to eating better, and not lose weight. So I did a little research and found that I need to build my lean muscle so my body will burn fat more efficiently. That's where this interval thing comes in.

So I'll go balls out on a machine for a few minutes, then go nice and slow for a few more minutes. I will repeat this over and over. This should cause me to lose weight. If I don't I think I may go after the elliptical machine or stationary bike with a hammer. I am not afraid to use the hammer. The staff at 24 Hour Fitness will have to escort me from the building. It can't be the first time someone has tried that right? Besides swinging that hammer must burn some calories!

I'm going to pretend that Bob and Jillian are yelling at me while I do my intense interval. I'm hoping that will motivate me.

Can you hear Jillian in your head? "Do it! Do it right or you'll do it again!" or Bob "Don't you hold on, run. Run!"

I'm hoping I don't look like Tracy when I'm on the machines.

If you don't watch The Biggest Loser you have no idea what I'm talking about, but if you do then you must agree that Tracy looks all crazy buggy while working out. She seriously looks possessed. Maybe I am a little biased, I've disliked her from the get go, but really she looks like her head might spin and spit green guck puke at any moment. If she wins this season I will be very displeased. I will just have to take comfort in the fact that I look better on a treadmill. At least I think I do. If I do not, just keep that to yourself okay?

I'm off to the gym! Toodles!

Remembering

Today marks the 20th anniversary of the Loma Prieta Earthquake. I was eleven then, a sixth grader at Rolling Hills Middle School. I was at home that evening, unwillingly. I'd wanted to go to a friends house, I had planned to ride my bike. My mom made me stay home. She was making dinner. Fish sticks. I was sitting on the love seat reading Death Be Not Proud waiting for the third game of the World Series to start. It was the Bay Bridge Series, my A's were up two games.

The shaking began at 5:04pm. It only lasted 15 seconds, but even now, in my mind it feels more like 5 minutes.

If you've ever had something traumatic like that happen maybe you know what I mean when I say that it really was in slow motion. In those 15 seconds I jumped over the love seat, ran to the kitchen where my mother was we both held onto each other and the door frame we had taken shelter in. I clearly remember seeing the cupboard doors shaking open and closed, the dishes rattling on their shelves. I remember watching the light on the ceiling blink off and on before it went off for good. I remember my mom saying "this is the big one". And then it was silent, for just a moment before people started to move again, started to leave their apartments. But then the silence came again. There was no power, no radio, no t.v., no phone. There was nothing. Darkness came quickly that night and because we had no power and lived at the bottom of a three story building we left to go stay with friends in San Jose. I remember driving along Winchester Blvd. in complete dark. A very strange occurrence in a city that large. Even the Winchester Mystery House sat dark and empty. Eerie is the best way to describe that dark, and people, unsure what to do with themselves stood out on streets, talking to neighbors, watching the sky, waiting for aftershocks.

It was twenty years ago but it is one of my clearest memories. It's so clear I can see it run in my head as if I'm watching a movie.

Prior to 1989 earthquakes had always been fun. Now I only consider them fun if they are less than 4.0, and even then they make my heart race until I know it's not another big one.

I always mark today with some sort of remembrance. Sometimes just a quiet moment at 5:04pm, sometimes I read old articles and seek out photos, sometimes I make a list of all the things I need for an earthquake kit (yes we need them even in Oregon!). Today I thought I'd type a blog and put my memories in a semi permanent place. There are many more memories as the quake lasted for weeks in our lives. We didn't have power for six days and I missed school for a few as well. I never had a snow day in California, but I had a few Quake days. For days we wondered if our friends were safe, there was no way to know unless we drove to their houses. We were so wrapped up in all of it that I don't remember the fall of the Berlin Wall which occurred on November 9th 1989. For years I couldn't understand why I didn't remember any of that, it seemed like it would have been a rather significant thing to watch and witness on t.v. and in the classroom, and yet I had no recollection of any of it. Just a few years ago I finally looked up the dates.

Twenty years have passed. Seems a little unreal. Here's a few pictures...



The Bay Bridge, also the reason I no longer feel comfortable with bridges in general.


A street grate in Los Gatos, the next city over from my hometown and the same city my middle school was in.


Jose Canseco and fellow ballplayers on the field at Candlestick Park after the quake. Check out the outfit on Ms. Canseco!


By the way, my A's won the series, they sweep it in four games. It was awesome!

Hallelujah!

It's the little things right? They make bad days brighter, bad weeks bearable, bad years...okay bad years are hard to deal with, but sometimes little things make all the difference. Case and point:

#1 - This week we said to ourselves "I wonder if we can turn the temp up on the water heater? It really doesn't heat so well when it's cold out, would be nice to have a steaming hot shower when it's 40° " So Scott took a look, moved a dial and we were able to, and the result is a blissfully hot, steamy shower. I had no idea a super hot shower could make me so happy, and I'm so sad it took us this many years to think to turn the temp up on the water heater! I'm married to a contractor after all! Love you honey! Thanks for turning the temp up! Hallelujah!

#2 - I have been going to the gym like a crazy lady lately. I'm committed to my fitness, more so than I ever have been as an adult. Still I haven't been losing much weight despite spending oodles of time on the treadmill, bike, and elliptical machine. Despite this sad state of affairs I decided, after a lovely co-worker said it looked like I'd lost weight, that I might try a little experiment tonight. So I dug in a pile of long forgotten clothes, pulled out a brand new pair of GAP jeans that have been sitting patiently since Christmas of 2007, and eyeballed them. I held them up a few times. Compared their thighs to mine and wrinkled my nose at them. Then I just went for it and tried them on, and low and behold they fit! They fit really well! I've been waiting to wear those jeans for almost two years?!?! Can I get a hallelujah?

So take that 2009! You may have tried to beat me to a pulp, but I have a hot steamy shower now and I fit in my brand new (old) jeans! That means it's just a matter of time until I fit in my bikinis again! That's right 2009, even though you broke my ankle, I am getting skinny again!

And Andy, my dear faithful reader/commenter, I'd love to do a "Weaker Meeker" challenge with you! When shall we start? What are the parameters? I can't wait to kick your butt! :)

Random Letters

Dear Panda Express,

I need to ask that you please file bankruptcy and go out of business completely. The doors to your establishment must close immediately as my little brain and big tummy are no match for your Orange Chicken. Really PE, I drive by your little restaurant of crack, not even intending to slow down just a little, and then suddenly my car has flipped a u-turn, parked itself in one of your parking spaces and shut itself off. And who am I to argue with a car? She could run me over!

This can not continue and I feel that you closing will be much easier than retraining my car to park at Salad Express instead. And yes PE I know Salad Express doesn't actually exist, but it should. Perhaps you could start that up after you close up your current shop? Think about that will ya?

Signed,
Chinese Food is my Crack


Dear Vacation,

Why have you become so elusive my dear old friend? We've had so many good times I simply can't understand your complete lack of involvement in my life now. Have I done something to anger you? Please let me know so I can fix it because I am in some real need of some Vacation in my life.

I'd prefer to see you in Hawaii, or maybe Europe, but I would take Disneyland or even Hood River at this point. We could have some quality time talking about how great you are, how much I love you, how you make working worth it. I'd give you my full attention and we could even go on adventures. I've just got to get you back in my life. I am more sane when I've spent time with you. I'm nicer to people too. You want me to be nice to people don't you?

Just last week I flipped someone off while driving. I never do that Vacation. Never. Sure I use my horn from time to time, but I NEVER flip people off. I also rolled my eyes at a pregnant lady who was complaining about morning sickness. I'm absolutely sure it does suck, and in retrospect I feel very bad for her, but Vacation in that moment I wanted to smack her, and since violence towards pregnant ladies is frowned upon I just turned so she couldn't see me and rolled my eyes. This behavior can't continue.

I NEED you! Please say you'll let me visit? I don't have any money so it's got to be a free visit, but I promise I'll give you my all when I'm there.

Love ya to pieces,
Desperately seeing R & R


Dear Birds at Work,

I know you've been eating the grapes. I can tell because your purple poop is on the hood of my car.

You and I both know you're not supposed to be eating the grapes. I know they are tasty little bird sized treats, but they are for wine, not bird bellies. You must stop until harvest is over. When the picking is done you can have the left overs. For now, all gorging on the little green and purple balls is off limits. Go find a worm.

In regards to pooping on my car... CEASE and DESIST! I don't make messes on your mode of transportation. Leave mine alone. Gretta doesn't deserve your purple poop. If you continue to act with disregard to my request I will seek legal action. I know you don't want to go to court over this, so just get your act together.

Signed,
Bird Hunter in Training

Beach Bound

Headed to the beach tomorrow for the long weekend. Could not have come at a better time. We both need to recuperate and regain some sanity. Can't wait to play some board games and watch the rain fall. I'll post another blog after we return and I feel a bit more grounded. It very obvious at work that a full moon has occurred this week! Seriously, it's been crazy!

Hope you all have a wonderful labor day!

Back in the sadle!

I did it. I went to the gym today. It felt good to have my ass kicked by the elliptical machine. I will probably hurt a bit tomorrow but I'll go back.

It was hard today, my ankle is very achy as we've had some rain today so the pressure in the air makes it hurt. But I decided my new motto is "I can. I will." I popped a few ibuprofen to help with the swelling and got on the machine.

I absolutely LOVE the new gym. It's pretty, light and bright, and it was empty at 4:45?? Weird! I can only assume that's because beat the 5pm crowd and the gym is not near a large business complex? I'm hoping it was not a fluke.

We had a lovely visit with Scott's older brother this last weekend. He flew in for a few days between shows. He is a Prop Master (is that the right title Andy?) for Broadway shows. He was in between shows and decided to visit. We went to the Adult Soapbox Derby Race on Mt. Tabor. It's a pretty crazy event though I understand it has gotten a little less crazy in the last few years. Just imagine grown men and women racing down an extinct volcano (yes we have a volcano cinder come within our city limits!) in hand made "cars". Some are super fancy and fast, some are just plain funny, some you wonder how on earth they will make it down the hill in one piece. It was a hoot and we had a good time on a perfect summer day.

This weekend is Hood to Coast where crazy runner people run from Mt. Hood - another volcano that is technically active but only has a 3-7% chance of eruption - to the coast. That's 197 miles, broken into 36 legs and each runner has to do at least three of those legs. It's for crazy people. Like Charity! She will be running this year, as well at a few other friends. I may try to catch a glimpse of them if they have legs in Portland proper.

So that's that. Back to the gym tomorrow!

Another Goal

I've decided to set yet another goal for myself. I am really, really good at setting goals. I am a dreamer at heart so I see visions of all that can be accomplished and how grand it will all be in the end. Somehow I'm just not all that good and achieving the goal. I don't know why this is. I do have the best intentions. I just get off track or lose focus. This leaves me feeling unaccomplished which is not a very good feeling. I want to be good at something. I want to be really good at something. That takes time and practice.

Right now I have time. I need to occupy it rather than sit around and feel sorry for myself. Someday I will have children, just not right this moment. Right this moment I should take the time I have and do something with it.

So I'm starting a new routine. Today I will go to the gym, the new one by my house bump up my membership so I can use it. Why 24 Hour Fitness made this club special is beyond me, but to use it I have to pay a little extra a month for it. But I will go because it's so close. I will go there each morning. Every. Single. Morning. I will be there by 5:30 so I can spend an hour working out before coming home to shower and get ready for work. It will become my new obsession. I will not be allowed to look at my email or facebook until I am done.

I will also spend at least one half hour writing each night. Perhaps this blog, perhaps a story outline. I want to be a writer someday. I need to practice. I need to hone my skills and find my voice.

I am going to accomplish this. I will be accomplished. So that when I do become a mother I can say that I finish things, I take care of things, I can do that, I can do anything! Because if we're being honest, while I want to be a mother, I want it more than anything in this world, I do worry that I won't be good enough.

I will still allow myself to throw a pity party when I have hard days. I like to cry, it makes me feel better sometimes, it's a release. And I can rock that whole mascara running down your cheeks look...okay maybe not. In fact I get ugly when I cry, really fast, but it still feels good.

So that's that. Wish me luck.

The world is passing me by…

Some days I feel like that. Like I missed the on ramp for the way life is supposed to be going. Or maybe I took a wrong turn a while back and never got back on the right path. Maybe someone handed me a bad map. I usually have a very good sense of direction, lately my compass has been spinning out of control.

It’s really only a problem when I’ve had a moment to sit and reflect and for some reason I've been doing that a bit this week.

I’m 31. I’ve been married for 9 years. I don’t have children. I am at least one year out from having them if not more.

Today I’m struggling with the timing issues. We need to wait, and save more. It’s expensive to do IVF. It makes sense to save up the extra money for the partial refund guarantee option. But then my mind starts running dates vs. numbers. If we wait until next year to try and by the grace of God I did get pregnant I wouldn’t be due until near the end of the year. I’d be 32. To try again, to save up to try for a sibling would be a long process, and then I’d be near 35. That time when fertility doctors look at you with more concern and less enthusiasm. The literal biological clock does tick. It ticks loudly as you approach 35. So now I’m stressed about that. This is ridiculous. I can’t control anything at this point. And yet, I stress. And what's six months of waiting in the grand scheme of things? We've been waiting eight years right? What's another half? Except today I feel like 8.25 years is my breaking point. And if we don't wait, and just jump right in and it doesn't work then we are really back at square one. Better to have tried and failed and then to have waited...and waited...and waited?

Why does it have to cost so much? Why can’t the US provide this service to those of us willing to jump though every hoop to have children? Why can’t adoption be more affordable? Why is it always about money? Always! Why? Why? Why?

A very close friend has offered some monetary assistance. Enough to make it possible to move forward very soon. But taking money that belongs to someone else is scary. I’m afraid I will feel guilty if it doesn’t work out. But the selfish person in me says to take it and move forward. She wants me to be happy. She has explained this time and time again. She knows it’s important to me and she’s in a position to help me. But it’s hard to take help. It’s a pride thing I suppose.

My brain says to do one thing, my hearts says to do another. I’m a very practical person but today the tug of my heart feels stronger. Like it’s ready to make a leap of faith. But that’s freaking scary.

I’m so discombobulated…so…so something.

Do me a favor will ya? Comment and tell me I’m not crazy to feel like this. This girl could use some encouragement and even advice if you’re willing to offer it.

Rude Awakening

I was awoken in the middle of the night by an obnoxious beeping. I had earplugs in and the fan was going so you can imagine that it was fairly loud. Scott didn't notice a bit. I had been asleep for hours so I wasn't quite connecting the sound I was hearing. At first thought it was a truck backing up outside, but it kept going and no one backs up for five minutes. Then I thought it might be the smoke detector telling me its batteries were low. I had blurry sleepy visions of Phoebe beating her smoke detector with a baseball bat. Remembering that there are no batteries in the smoke detector (yes I know it's bad, but it sits just outside the bathroom so if you take a steamy shower it goes off!) I decided I was going to have to get out of bed and check it out. On the way I stepped on a broken hanger Scott had left on the floor, then tripped over his foot hanging off the side of the bed. I'm starting to feel like my house is something of a war zone with all sorts of mines for me to step on. Oh but I really had no idea... rI followed the sound out into the living room where our iPod docking station/alarm clock was going off. The screen read 12:01 and in my sleepy brain I assumed that was the time. I stumbled across the room to tried and turn it off. Just as I got to the table where it was I felt something smushy and sticky under my bare foot. Dog crap. I was barefoot! The little monster had crapped in the house while we were out and I hadn't noticed.

My first thought was, "One minute into Monday and I've got dog crap on my foot." Then I realized it was actually 1:00am and my second thought was "One hour into Monday doesn't make it any better."

Thankfully the rest of the day wasn't nearly as crappy. PAC is out of town for the entire week so the general mood in the office is much lighter. Scott and I had a really nice weekend together and I started the week off well rested.

I wish I could say I had something exciting to update here, but I really don't. Life seems kind of still at the moment. It's not a bad thing really. Just not all that exciting, unless you consider dog pooh on your foot exciting. I know I don't.

I am currently watching Mad Men, which might be the best show since The West Wing. I'm only on episode five and I'm hooked. I want every dress they have! I was meant to wear dresses with crinolines...Dresses with crinolines and high heals. Certainly not bare feet anymore!

A weekend of celebration

Brew Fest, the one time of year I really let my guard down and have more than just a few drinks...The fire boat put on a little show as we walked across the river to Tom McCall Waterfront Park

It was a beautiful day, the temperature was 87°, there wasn't a cloud in the sky. The Willamette River was sparkling under the sunshine and the beer was flowing.

I'm not really a beer drinker. It's an acquired taste that I have yet to acquire, but when it's hot out and the goal is to get a bit tipsy I'm in. So we imbibe in celebration of the 21st Amendment (which is also the reason I have a job where I do) and good friendship. We act totally silly and at times unruly, but it's all in good fun and for one day we're college kids again, drinking until we can't drink another drop. Telling funny stories and laughing so hard our tummies hurt. It's a beautiful thing. It's the one time I actually allow myself to be totally irresponsible each year. It's a breath of fresh air for this control freak.

There are many more pictures but most I really shouldn't post here. Like I said, we can be a little unruly and that often leads to some pretty not so adult photos. I'll post this last one of me and Cheryl who is a Brew Fest Trooper! She goes more than one day, way more than I can handle!


Tomorrow we celebrate the twinners turning three. Their actual birthday is today so after finishing up my present shopping I went over to their house and Tricia and I took them out for ice cream. Big brother Nathan was a great help, even offering to share his ice cream and coming up with the brilliant idea that the twins should open a present when we got back to the house. Sometimes I an in awe of how Nathan is with his younger siblings. He's really growing up which is fun to watch but a bit scary at times too...I'd of thought by now we'd have kids to be his cousins. As it is now, when we finnally do have them he will be so much older. That makes me a bit sad because I loved being with my cousins when I was younger. Cousins who were older really weren't on my radar. For good reason, they had other lives and I was just a silly baby...

Anyway, back to the twins and presents.

Picture Jake, sitting on the couch holding a wrapped present, shakes it and says, "There are legos in my present!" It was adorable. Can't wait to celebrate them again tomorrow!

Feeling HOT, HOT, HOT!

Harry Potter and the HBP was awesome. Really, my favorite of the series movie was thus far. I am terribly sad that I have to wait until November of 2010 for the next movie. However it gives me reason to reread the book and that will keep me happy for a day or two :)

I think I'll go back and see it in IMAX when it comes out next week.

In other news, Oregon will become the surface of the sun this week. Temps are expected to get up to 100+ . I LOVE warm weather, but 85 is where I top out as far as enjoyment goes. I tend to melt once the temp gets past that. And by melting I basically turn into a sloth, unable to move, unable to get anything done. Our little house often times gets to be 6-10 degrees hotter inside than outside. I guess it's time to have Scott put the A/C unit in the living room. I hate how big and clunky it is but I hate glistening more (yes glistening, I don't sweat). And I know I'm completely wimpy as far as heat goes. Those of you in Arizona, Nevada and Texas must just be laughing at me now. Just keep in mind I work in a converted attic that does not have A/C. I might actually melt to my chair and become stuck. When that happens you'll feel bad for laughing at me. You'll then have to send me flowers to feel better, I just know it! :)

The heat also means that Brew Fest is going to be hotter than a mother flipping chilli pepper in a campfire! I think it would be wise of us to pack some extra water and food so we don't get overheated. Probably should also take pictures early on so as not to show off how much we glisten....ICK! Hope the beer stays cold!

Friday Photograpy



Admittedly this is an old shot, and not even the best one I took but it's the only one I have access to right now. I do love it though. It's such a pretty part of the Oregon coastline, filled with tons of tide pools and great views. In fact I may try to talk Scott into a drive out there in a few weeks, just to stick my finger in a sea anemone. I love it when they squirt water back at you!

Next Friday I'll be taking loads of pictures at the annual Oregon Brewers Festival. I'll be sure to post some here. The day usually gets a bit crazy but always provides plenty of material for shots.

Hope you all have a nice weekend!

Need Your Help!

Every year we attend the Oregon Brewers Festival. A group of us have been doing this for some time. We take a half day off on Friday, head down to beautiful Tom McCall Waterfront Park and drink lots and lots of beer.

Part of the tradition includes wearing a funny t-shirt.

2007 I had one that said "Friends don't let friends vote Republican" and Charity had one that said "Friends don't let friends vote democrat"

2008 I had one that was a picture of a Beet with a black eye and it said "Don't make me throw a beet down!"

I am having a very difficult time finding a shirt this year. I've checked all the usual websites and the shirts are either too crass or not funny enough. My best candidates at this point are "This beer is making me awesome!" or "I Rule" with a picture of a ruler. Not really as fun as I'd like them to be.

So I need your help! Either point to a funny shirt or give me a funny saying I can have put on a shirt.

A pretty day in July...

I picked the 14th because it was an even numbered day. I'm a freak like that. I just really prefer an even number to an odd and it seemed like a good idea to get married on one. It was also a Friday which meant we didn't have to worry about sharing the facility with anyone else that day.

It was a lovely evening. It was warm, the sun shined until late in the evening. The stars came out that night, they sky was clear. I can't say that anything really went wrong. Sure there was a small mishap here or there, and I did have one huge melt-down over something terribly silly (makeup on the inside of my dress where no one could see it). But overall it was just perfect. People danced the night away and stayed until the place kicked us out.

It's been nine years now, and just today I finally scanned some photos - yes we got married before digital photography had become all the rage. I am very sad that our photographer lost the film. I can never order more shots, or buy shots we didn't get the first time around. Thankfully we got quite a few when we did purchase our photos.

Nine years. Doesn't really seem all that long ago...but when I look back at our baby faces in the photos I can really tell it's been that long.

Ups and downs and all arounds, we've always found some common ground and I can honestly say that today, all these years later, he's still my dream boat. I fall asleep better when he's home, in bed with me. I still get excited for him to come home from work. I still would rather cuddle on the couch than go shopping (shocking I know!). He's just the one for me. I'm just lucky I found him so early and that we've been able to grow as adults and not grow apart. I think I've been pretty blessed...






July 14, 2000

Nothing doing...

Nothing fun or exciting to report. Perhaps that is a good thing. At least nothing bad has happened...

My Aunt's cancer hasn't spread so she won't have to do chemo, thank goodness.

Greg is home from the hospital, getting better at home where it's easier to get better.

Those are the good things, the blessings.

**** now for my pity party ****

Despite those amazing things I'm struggling to stay chipper these days. It's not one thing in particular. It's not as if one big bad thing has made me sad or grumpy. I'm just not feeling it these days. I feel like 2009 has been a pretty rotten year and by now it should be improving, and yet I'm still in limbo - financially, baby-itis, stupid ankle (which is better but not normal). Just waiting, one day, for life to get easy. Even if just for a few months, it would be nice to not worry about things.

I'm hoping this weeks beautiful weather, and next weekends camping trip will help elevate my mood. I would go get a pedicure but it costs too much and my ankle wouldn't cooperate... again with the waiting! I'm so tired of waiting! BAH!!!!! Sigh.... just call me Eeyore.

Memories of a five year old zombie wanna be....

I must talk about Michael Jackson a bit. I almost feel like I would be remiss to ignore his passing in my blog/journal. I was not what you'd call a huge fan, but he was of course a very large part of my childhood music world.

We had lots of records. Loads and loads in these wood crate things, but the special ones, the ones we listened to often lived on a shelf on the ginormous entertainment center my parents owned. I can distinctly remember the Thriller album cover being on top of the record stack for a large portion of my time at the apartment on Hacienda Avenue. It was always there, right along with my Dumbo record and eventually my Madonna record. I thought my mom must have a crush on him because he was laying on his side trying to look all sexy (or what a six year old perceives as trying to be sexy). Though the music taste varied greatly in my house - Grateful Dead to Journey to Rolling Stones to Patsy Cline to Elvis - there was always a place for Thriller.

I can also remember trying very hard to learn each and every move to the Thriller dance, just like every kid my age. I've never been a terribly coordinated dancer (ask anyone who ever saw me try out for a cheerleading squad, thank goodness I could tumble and stunt!) so I probably looked more like an actual zombie than a cool dancer dressed up like a zombie. A five year old zombie. But the point is I tried, because it was so freaking cool. He was cool. The video was cool. The song was awesome! I wanted to be his date and wear the cute poodle skirt. In fact now that I think about it, I think I can rightfully blame Michael Jackson for my obsession with said article of clothing that has carried with me to present day. I am always looking for a 50's-ish skirt!I heard that song six times yesterday and I never got tired of it. I think I could listen to it as many times today and still get a kick out of it. And still want to wear the skirt, but not the spandex outfit later in the video...

I actually found myself flipping stations in search of more Michael Jackson music on my way home last night. I couldn't get enough and every song gave me goosebumps. I didn't realize it was that important to me until I heard "We Are the World" and I teared up.

I'm not here to judge the man, his actions or what his life eventually became. That's God's job and I suspect they are talking it over right now. What I can do is remember the joy and fun his music brought to my childhood and so many others. I'd like to remember him as the shy speaking, moonwalking, bleeding heart that he was before he got all weird.

I may even try to learn the Thriller dance again so I can participate in the Thrill The World mass dance this coming October. You know you want to do it too! We can all dance like zombies together! Check for your local time and spot here:

http://www.thrilltheworld.com/events/info/thrill_the_world_2009/official_events

The world is heavy...

Do you ever just want to avoid the news completely? Too much violence, too much sadness, sometimes not even a trace of a feel good story?

The world seems so heavy right now. Heavy burdens on shoulders. Heavy hearts.

The plight of the Iranian people, the story if Neda and her death is painful. I made myself watch the video of her shooting. It was horrifying to watch, but I made myself do it because I felt like I owed it to her and the others who want to see equality and peace in their country. I don't want to dismiss it as another horrible thing going on out there, like I do far too often. She is one of many. They are one county of many, seeking freedom and equality. I am not a middle east expert and I don't know what the answer is, but I do feel for them, want them to find peace and learn to live in harmony again.

The argument about renaming 39th Ave, here in my own city is extremely frustrating and hurtful. I've been following the story for months now and watched the city council hearing on it last night. In all honesty I felt like neither of the sides (pro/con) made valid, educated points, and reading the comments posted on local news sites make me sad and somewhat sick. Cesare Chavez was a civil rights worker who did wonderful things for the migrant farm workers in our country. He was a US citizen, and believer in following the law, but also changing it to make work safe and equal for those hard working people who put produce on your table. Reading the hateful comments about him, accusing him of being illegal, of helping illegals, of being Jimmy Hoffa, it's just plain stupid. That is not who he was. I don't want to rename the street, it's a numbered street in a grid system. It's a navigational thing, not to mention all the business' that would have to spend money to change all sort of marketing materials and address related items. I even live in a neighborhood that would be directly affected so I feel like I have a valid say in it. But, Chavez deserves more respect than he's getting. The ignorance and bigotry of my fellow Oregon residents makes me sad. I thought we, the city of Portland, were better than that.

And then there is cancer. Greg is doing better. Thank you to everyone who sent a prayer and good thought. He has improved greatly, though is still in the hospital fighting infection. But in even more unhappy news, my Aunt has been diagnosed with breast cancer. She is having surgery today to remove a lesion. My Aunt G was my "summer mother" I spent many a summer day and night in her house while I was home in Illinois, and as my mom's only sister is probably the closest relative I have besides my own mom. Her husband, Uncle R, walked me down the aisle. I know her survival rate is high, and it was detected early, but it's scary and means my mother and I are greater risk. It's just bad, sad, ugly, nasty and frightful all in one stupid package. Cancer sucks.

Sorry for the bummer of a post, but it's all been weighing on my own heart. I want my world to be a better place, a happier, healthier place and sometimes it's hard to find evidence that there are good things happening around me.

An extra hug for you all

Tonight I came home and made dinner and now am just waiting for Scott to get home so we can spend some quality time on the couch. I feel the need tonight to just be with him, give him an extra hug or kiss.

Scott's friend and former business partner is back at the hospital, complications after his most recent bone marrow transplant. Complications were to be expected, he has no immune system on purpose, but I think this is extra scary. He has pneumonia. His organs aren't working so well, so his body is taking on fluid. He's not completely lucid and the nerve damage from the chemo has gotten worse. They are now saying the nerve damage could be permanent. At this point he can not stand on his own. I don't know that the severity will be permanent but knowing he may not regain full use of his hands and feet must be extremely hard to hear. He is 32 years young.

Greg and Shana are the most resilient people I know and yet today, I could hear in the words Shana types the stress and fatigue she is feeling. There is nothing I can do to make it better for them. No magic wand, no shooting star wishes, but Lord knows if I could I would.

What I can do is ask anyone who reads this to say a prayer, send a kind thought, put a positive vibe into the universe. It doesn't matter what God you pray to, or even if you pray at all. There is something about people focusing on one thing, a positive thing that makes it feel better. And I know that Greg and Shana would appreciate any help they can get. If you know of a prayer chain add them too, if you think of it.

I personally will be spending a lot of time talking to God in the next few days.

I've been teary for a large part of the day. I reread the updates, reread the notes people leave in their guestbook. It's hard to read, but I find some comfort in knowing they have so many people that care for them. So many people pulling for them.

I know I've said it before, but it really does make me rethink my priorities and pull myself out of any pity party I had planned.

Yes my goal for a family in on hold now, but their lives are on hold, their entire lives. It's so easy to get wrapped up in the little things in a day, when really our energy should be focused on helping those who need it most.

Cancer sucks.

Hug your loved ones, maybe a few times. And thank you for passing along the need for prayer.

Trauma at the pool

I realize that the gym is open to anyone and everyone who is willing to pay the membership fee. I realize that I need to be tolerant of things. I realize that it's not my gym so I have no say over who uses what machine or room at the gym. I realize I might sound like a total nut log for saying this, but no man over 60, scratch that, no man no matter their age should ever wear this to the pool:

Furthermore, no man should wear this, then take extra large, lunge like, steps around said pool deck and whistle while doing so. It's quite traumatizing for a gal who is just trying to get some exercise.

It's called a banana hammock for a reason guys! And ladies don't want your banana hammocking around them!

I'd never wished for my goggles to steam up before...

Back in the swim of things....

I had grand plans to make it to the gym this morning at 6:30AM for a brisk swim.

It didn't happen.

Dog woke me up at 2am, 3:06am and 3:30am. I didn't sleep well. Dog had a great time playing in the yard at 3:07am.

I did pack my bag for a trip to the gym after work.


Things needed to swim:
- New suit that boobs will not pop out if swimming breast or butterfly stroke CHECK
- Swim cap to protect pretty shiny hair CHECK
- Goggles to protect contacts CHECK
- Accountability....not so CHECK

Accountability is my worst problem. I'm hoping if I log my exercise efforts here I will be better about them. But perhaps if you read this on a regular basis, and you notice that I haven't mentioned my swimming you might post a comment like...

"Hey Erin, did you get your fat ass to the pool today?"

You can say it nicer than that if you like, but I think it's fun to say "fat ass" so I won't hold it against you if you use the term.

Friday Photograpy


Yes it's a real building in Portland, just around the corner from my house actually. Apparently it's not all that well known because people are always surprised to see this picture. I found it one day while Charity and I were in Sellwood shopping. I went back later with my step ladder to get a better shot and this is it. I'd like to go back and get an even better shot someday.

Currently I have this hanging in my bathroom...it was just too funny not to!



I am home from our trip to the mid-west. Happy to have seen family, but happy to be home. It had been years since I last saw some of my cousins, so it was wonderful to see them, reconnect with them and realize that we're still great friends. There is something about people who have known you since the begining and spent those formative years with you. They just get you.

Other than that I don't have anything to talk about really. The IVF road is closed for now. In fact I think I've decided just to postpone until at least January or February. That way no one (mom and me) is stressing about it constantly and we can enjoy our summer. I don't want to get all worked up again and have it not pan out, it's an emotional drain and I'm already an emotional person. The subject was approched with my cousins and Aunt as they too know what it's like to struggle with infertility and I must say it was so comforting to have their immediate attention and understanding about it all. They knew the right things to say and do and that was so refreshing. I can't tell you how hard it is to hear people say "if you just relax it will happen" or "when God is ready you'll have babies". I know statments like that are meant to be helpful, and the people who say them mean absolutely no harm, but they do hurt. It implies I'm not doing something right either for my body, or for God and that's just not the case.

Both my Aunt and cousin adopted after trying for years, then both got pregnant. Their families are so wonderful, I can only hope we're as lucky some day.

Hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Friday Photograpy - Illinois

We've been in Illinois now for two days, I feel like we've been driving for most of it. Everyone here lives so far from each other and so far from things. In all honesty it's probably not all that much further than normal, but it's so flat and empty that it feels like you are out in the middle of no where.

I'm going to try taking some pictures tomorrow that show the flat vastness of it. It's quite pretty in it's own way. The sunset was beautiful tonight, the sky lit up to a brilliant pink and the sun was firey red. Just beautiful!


My photo for today is from the Ingrahm Cemetery in Ingraham, Illinois. My mother grew up in Ingraham and a large part of our family lived here many, many years ago. In fact my Great, great, great Grandfather Benhard is burried in this cemetery. I had no idea that he was a civil war vet until I found this stone next to the large family stone. My grandfather told me that he was originally in the Illinois infantry then moved over to the Indiana infranty.


Tomorrow is the wedding and I'm hoping to get out early to get some more pictures. Then on to St. Louis for the ball game! I'm so excited to head to a ball game I can't stand it! Go Cards!

Peonies

First the peonies sprouted in early spring. They are odd looking little spouts.


Then the peonies bloomed,


and along came a bee....




Mr. Bee came out just as I was taking pictures of the big blooms. He wasn't the brightest bee. He spent quite a bit of time in the wrong folds of the flowers, but it allowed me some time to capture him in a photo.

I leave for Illinois on Wednesday night. My youngest cousin is getting married. That makes me old. We share a middle name and I remember when she was born. I guess I've always thought she was a little extra special. Now she's all grown up.

I'm hoping to take my laptop so I can do my Friday Photography from there...oh who am I kidding, I can't live without Facebook.

Still quite sad about the IVF cycle, but no sense in dwelling. It will happen. Someday. Not as if my body is cooperating anyway. I was supposed to go in for tests on Friday but they were canceled when the timing was off, rescheduled for today and had to cancel again. Perhaps it is a sign...

Totally Lame

Feeling a little devastated at the moment. Trying not to let it feel like it's the end of the world because I know in the grand scheme of things it's not all that bad, it just feels that way today.

We have to postpone the IVF cycle, maybe a few months, maybe more. All along we've wanted to do the shared risk option that gives you 70% of your money back if you don't have a live birth. It's important because IVF has a 40% chance of working, odds are not in our favor. In all the paperwork OHSU gave us it looked like one price so I thought we were ready. Upon doing a little more research it seems that the guaranteed refund costs an extra $4000 not including medication. Funny that it costs more to give you money back?? Our IVF coordinator left without telling us and so I wasn't able to ask questions and get to bottom of things in the time frame I'd of liked. So I got my hopes up and now...well the balloon has deflated.

So, despite the amazing amount my mom has already contributed, we're short. May be short for a long while. I had planned to have a much bigger savings account by now, but things always happen. Pay cuts at work due to the economy, Scott's new company has a huge paycheck lag time making these last few months hard to catch up, always something.

I'm trying to remind myself that we're blessed. Scott is working at a time when most people in construction are not. I have a stable job. We have an adorable house we love and we can pay our bills.

Still hard not to feel let down. Actually let down isn't right. I feel like someone kicked me in the gut, withheld water for three days, then tied me up and set a tall cold glass of h20 just out of my reach. It's so close, but I can't have it, and it's starting to hurt.

Waiting, waiting, waiting. Always waiting. I'm not a patient person by nature.

I spent most of my day at work pretending I was having an allergy attack, when I was in fact just teary. Tomorrow I will have to put on a happy face for Scott's birthday party. At least I have party prep to keep me occupied...Good that I can't slow down and become lump o'lard on the couch like I am inclined to do.

Just so tired of things not working out. Seems like someday we're gonna get a break right? It has to get easy someday?

I want to kick something, and drink the worlds largest margarita.

Friday Photography



It's actually an old picture and some of you have probably seen it, but it's the reason this blog got it's name. I took it last year after rare warm rain. It rains a lot here in Oregon, but not usually when it's warm.

After this particular shower my entire garden was covered in raindrops and it was so pretty I grabbed the camera. This ranunculus in particular stuck out. It was taller than the others, and it seemed almost perfect, no bug bites, no browned edges, just a perfectly pretty flower.

I noticed last night that my peonies are starting to bloom so I might try to get some pictures of them. They don't last long but I love them. The anticipation or peonies is the most fun of all the flowers in my yard. Watching them start from such small little red leaves and becoming nearly three feet tall filled with huge round buds is exciting. I wait and wait and wait and then one day they just bloom. Of course they also require more work than most. I have to put a guard up to keep Scott from mowing them over, and they need a support system because they grow so tall they can fall over easily, and for some reason the ants love them. I'm constantly battling the ants to keep the peonies healthy. The pay off is worth it though. Huge, lush flowers.

I'm hoping I'm like a peony. I've been waiting and waiting and waiting, I'm ready to bloom dammit! The peony was a sign of abundance in ancient China and is often used for women's health in Chinese Herbal Medicine.

Well now that I've talked about peonies so much I feel obligated to take pictures tonight!

My husband and his dirty feet issues...

I am sitting on the couch drinking my new Chinese herbal concoction. Scott is sitting on the couch watching the only good Keanu Reeves movie ever made ( A Walk in the Clouds).

I make a fake retching noises as the herbal concoction is, shall we say, less then tasty. Scott says "I know, they are stomping on all those grapes with dirty feet after working outside all day!"

This made me laugh out loud.

If you haven't seen the movie there is a large grape stomping scene after a full day of harvest.

Guess it's a good thing we don't actually foot stomp grapes where I work or Scott would never drink the wine.

And yeah I know Kee-nunu, as I call him, was in the Matrix too, but his acting is just so bad I can't stand it! And please, if you've never had to suffer that movie he made with Charlize where she's dying and makes him try all these new things, like sing, don't threaten the health of your retinas or eardrums by attempting a viewing.

Slippery Slope

I'm watching John and Kate Plus 8 tonight. It's the season premier, the first episode since the tabloids started posting pictures and making accusations about them. It's not over yet, but it doesn't look good for them. It's pretty obvious that John is angry and Kate is hurt. And I don't know the whole story. No one but John and Kate do, but I just hate to see them fail. And yes I think she's a bit much. I know she's not always kind to John. And it frustrates me to listen to them sometimes. But I can't even fathom what it's like to parent eight children. I'm not the biggest Kate fan, but I've always felt like she and John were the original people out there saying "look we couldn't have kids, so we took steps to help and now we have this beautiful family and you can too". But now it looks like they could become part of that statistic, the one where patents of multiples have a higher divorce rate.

I hate to see anyone fail. I hate to think that people can wander so far from the people they were when they were madly in love with each other. Wander so far they don't even recognize the person they are living with. It's just sad. It's even sadder when outside influences make it worse.

Of course I know that there are plenty of people who just don't work, can't function with each other, are even toxic for each other and are probably better off without each other. I know that my household was more stable once my father left. In instances like ours, I know that life was better for my parents not living with one another.

It's still sad to watch the demise of others.

I'd stopped buying and reading tabloids and even the slightly more classy celeb mags when the whole Crazy Brittney stuff was going down. I didn't want anyone to profit from her obvious illness. Now I'm glad I didn't contribute to the profit for any of these John and Kate stories. I just want to smack the paps upside the head.

Yes it's a reality show, yes they opened their lives for us to watch. But isn't that enough? Do we have to hunt them down, wait for them to screw up and take pictures of it? Or worse, just take pictures to imply that they screwed up? What is the line? What can you do when the line is ignored.

Dang those kids are cute though. No matter what anyone else says, John and Kate raise some adorable, sweet, funny kids. I hope they can work things out, not only for those kids, but for themselves too.

Stick a needle in it!

I had a dream on Wednesday morning that was so frightening it woke me up. I sat bolt upright in my bed, a little damp from sweat, and looked at the clock. 5:22AM!

Basically I was lying on on the acupuncture table face down when the acupuncturist told me she was going to stick a needle in the bottom of my big toe (bad right?) and that it would make me pass a very large bubble of gas (WTF?!?!? worse right?) and that she would leave the room to let me do that then come back to finish sticking me with needles. Panic set in, I was about to bolt off the table when I woke up.

Maybe not frightening in the traditional sense, but horrifying in the "I don't do those kind of body functions in public places even if it's expected of me"sense.

A little anxious about upcoming acupuncture appointment? Um yeah. A little anxious about letting a gigantic fart rip in public? I guess my subconscious is. Ah the things dreams reveal.

Thankfully the actual session wasn't even close to that bad, in fact it wasn't bad at all. I even felt relaxed when it was all over and woke up this morning with much more energy than normal. I go back next week for more needles. She thinks she'll be able to help my ankle some too. Plus studies show that women who are being treated for infertility and IVF have much better success when also being treated by an acupuncturist.

But really, the whole idea of needles is still hard to take in. The things I am willing to do for IVF/Baby continues to expand. Next I'll be taking drugs! Oh wait, that's totally true...

Next on list:
1)Saline Ultrasound - basically fill up my uterus with saline to check for any anomalies
2)Mock Transfer - testing of the spacing in uterus in prep for actual egg transfer. I didn't know we'd do this on the same day. In fact the first time it was mentioned was just last week and that seems like pretty serious, ready to roll stuff, which freaks me out in a good excited way.
3)Drugs, drugs and more drugs - probably starting mid June
4)Egg Retrieval - looking likely to be very end of June or early July
5)Egg Transfer - three days after ER

That's it in a nutshell. I'll no more detail in a week or so. Until then I'll just get ready for my next needle appointment!

Summer Rain

It smells good outside right now. Fresh new gigantic rain drops on grass and pavement. It smells like summer out there. Too bad it's a freaking deluge! BIG raindrops! HUGE! "Run for cover you might as well take a shower outside" rain drops. Olivia put one paw outside before looking up at me like I was a nut case for even making her consider a potty break in the yard. She promptly ran back into the house where I had to chase her (in my boot clomp clomping around) and force her out.

Only one day of rain though, then we're back to sweet sunshine and this rain will make all my flowers and grass happy.

Went to a book signing and reading tonight. Jen Lancaster's new book Pretty in Plaid. If you haven't read her other books I'd highly recommend you high tail it to your closest book store and fork over the dough to purchase them. She's funny. I want to get paid to write funny memoirs like she does, I can swear and cause a ruckus too! :)

Also, I've decided the term Son of a Bitch is old and tired. From here on out it will be Son of a Crack Whore - for me anyway. And in case you are still following the literal swearing movement (totally makes me aware of how much I swear) that would be son of an illegal substance street vendor!

Retail Therapy = Awesome!

Well I survived the baby shower sans even a drop of a tear. I think it was very helpful that not one person asked me if we were going to have children and I was sitting with another woman who doesn't even have babies on her radar yet so it was all very foreign to her. There was another person at our table, a childhood friend of Scott's. She is expecting and is actually due in four weeks. She is a sweet person, always has the best intentions and really has no idea that she talks about herself incessantly. She had a comment for every single thing the other mommy-to-be opened. They were funny comments, but two hours later I was ready to say my goodbyes.

I rewarded myself for attending the shower with a mini shopping spree. I had been saving my birthday money for my first trip to a mall since the ankle break. It was everything I dreamed it would be. I got a little warn out but had so much fun touching, smelling and trying on things that it didn't matter.

Sephora never disappoints me. There was new makeup to look at, new products for my face, and dry shampoo for my upcoming trip to the mid-west. It's a lifesaver in the humidity.

I also bought a dress for the wedding I'm attending in a few weeks. It's pretty adorable if I do say so myself. Now the hunt is on for some very flat shoes that will complete the outfit. I am not a flat wearer so this will probably be an issue. I'm 5'3" on a good day. Flat shoes make me seem like a dwarf when around anyone 5'6" and up.

I go back the acupuncturist on Wednesday for my first real session. It will last more than an hour but I'm really looking forward to it. This lady was recommended by a friend (thanks Megan!) and she's everything I was told she would be. Warm, kind, very educated on infertility issues. I have a really good feeling about her. She even goes with you to egg transfer because studies show that acupuncture within 20 min of transfer are more successful. I figure at this point we should do anything we can to make this work.

Friday Photograpy

This year I started out with a resolution to use my camera more. I haven't been doing a very good job so far and the year is nearly half over (someone please tell me how that happened?).

So I thought it might be fun if I had to post a new photo(s) every Friday here on my blog. It means I've got to keep my camera with me and make a point of taking something worth sharing.

To start my new little Friday tradition I drove up the the new winery my company built this year and took some pictures in the vineyard. The vines are very young and it's very early in the season so they are almost lost on the hillside because the clover has grown so tall. The sun came out when I got up there so the lighting is a little bright, but the pictures are still so pretty. It's hard not to have a good turn out when you have such a great setting.

Bumble Bee on the clover up at Avellana Vineyard

Bud Break on the baby vines at Avellana


California Poppies in the sunshine


Shoots and bud break at the Estate Vineyard


Dogwood tree with Estate Vineyard in the background
I was talking with Scott last night over dinner about my near panic attack at the idea of starting the IVF cycle. He thought for a moment I was panicked about suddenly having another human to care for but I explained that didn't freak me out in the slightest. I know that it will, when the times comes, but right now that's so far from my mind. What I'm panicked about is the stupid needles, the crazy mood swings, ovaries becoming the size of golf balls (which seems small, but apparently makes you feel like none of your pants fit), and imminent weight gain. Oh and of course that whole "it might not work" thing.

I figure I have about four or five weeks to get myself prepared for this. That seems like a long time in the grand scheme of things, but I know how fast that's going to go by.

I don't know how one really prepares for this. The inflicting self with meds is not easy. It goes against that human insticnt not to hurt yourself. It's got to be mind over matter at that point, but I still don't know how I'll be able to do it. I can't even pull a band-aid off quickly! Scott will not be able to help me at all. He and needles don't go together. Scott's sister, a nurse has volunteered to help. I don't know if she's wanting to help or just likes the idea of infliciting pain. God love her but I suspect it might be the latter (I'm sure she wants to help too, but I know she enjoys sticking people).

Like a rabid monkey....

you're going to want to stay away from me for the next five days :) Though with a rabid monkey five days is probably not enough time.

Anyway....

Why? Well my beloved body, my temple of being, my inner workings have stopped working again and now I get to start on Provera again. As some of you might recall Provera makes me a hormonal nightmare. Scott and I had a killer fight last time I was on it, though I would like to think that it wasn't med induced. In fact I am tempted to not tell him I'm back on it to see if I am indeed crazy of if he just likes to egg me on while I am on fertility drugs. He has admitted to multiple parties that he just likes to poke at me to see how I'll react.

Something very surprising, when I talked to our IVF nurse T today (she's super nice and I love her) she said that with all our blood work in we could possibly move forward on this cycle. For a breif instant I was ecstatic, but then I realized that isn't going to work. I'm flying to the mid-west in three weeks for my cousins wedding and I don't think it's wise to travel while on fertility meds. Plus how do you travel with needles? Obviously that would have to go in a suitcase and it seems to me that medication valued at a few grand should really be a carry on item. Kind of like Great Grandma's ashes (great story that will have to wait for later). So we'll just get this cycle going and do the saline ultrasound and then wait a few more weeks before moving forward.

So really it looks like we're still looking at June, which is fine. We don't have any trips planned and I can focus on just the whole IVF process which I think is important. But wow, we're that much closer! Hooray! and YIKES! This is real. This is going to happen now. Somehow, even though we've been marching toward this for a long time I didn't think it would ever get here. I'm feeling a little overwhelmed and nervous. I'm thinking the trip to the accupuncurist on Friday couldn't be better timed....I'm thinking I wish I could have a very large margarita right now.

Just stuff

I had my five week follow up with the orthopedist today and after looking at the x-rays he thinks the bone is healing. Thank goodness! Unfortunately he thinks I'll be wearing the boot for another six weeks. Lamesauce. I jokingly told him I'd have to decorate it for a wedding in June and he told me I could probably get away without wearing it if I wear flat shoes and don't dance. So glad. I wasn't sure how to find a dress that goes well with the boot. I will still have to wear it traveling so we can pre-board! I swear he told me to, I didn't make that up.

It turns out that Dr. W is from the mid-west so we had a nice little chat about the humidity and lightening bugs. Apparently his kids reacted to the humidity like Scott did when I took him home (I think I call Illinois home because both of my parents do) for a week ten years ago. Basically shock and near horror that air can hold that much water without actually raining. Add to it 85 degrees and you have a very sweaty, very grumpy Scott. Which is why he will probably never go back to Illinois with me again. His loss. Only people who travel to Illinois get to go to St. Louis Cardinal games! Only people who go to Illinois get to chase lightening bugs and keep them in a jar. Only people that go to Illinois get to have a Hardee's biscuit with honey!

Friday I go see an acupuncturist who specialises in infertility. She comes highly recommended from a friend and after talking to her on the phone I feel really good about it. OHSU told me to pursue this before we start treatment so it's one more thing off my list. Which is really good because today I had to go to Babies R Us to get a gift for the shower I'm going to and it was difficult. Not only was I completely turned around in that store, but I wanted to buy myself a boppy and the adorable pink and brown bedding for the beautiful scroll crib. I mean what if they don't still have it when I finally do get pregnant? Will my nursery be complete without it? Yes, I really did have that thought while standing in the onesies section looking at said crib. Yes I have lost my mind. But I like to day dream too so I let myself dream for a moment about the adorable nursery I'll have. And it will be adorable. Beyond adorable. Seriously, people will want to move into my house once they set foot in it.

BTW, shopping for people who aren't finding out the sex of the baby drives me nuts. I LOVE to personalize, coordinate and decorate things and not being able to buy color coordinated items nearly killed me. It was painful to my shopping heart. I'm making flannel burp rags and green and orange just are not as cute as I like to go. How can people not want to know the sex of the baby? That's worse than the huge uber wrapped/tapped up present under the Christmas tree!

PS. Reread post and seem to be having something of a drama queen day... not sure why? I guess it's good I haven't thrown any tantrums while people are around.

Dammit Jim!

Stardate 62821.7 (That is today's actual star date in case you were wondering)

Erin's Log - After a showing of the new Star Trek movie I have reaffirmed my love of hero's. Today in particular one Mr. James T. Kirk. Wowza!

So yes the movie is the totally awesomest. The casting was PERFECT! The action was STELLAR! The whole thing was just BRILLIANT! If are even a close relation to a Trekkie you should transport to your nearest theater.

I've been a Trekkie for as long as I can remember so I've been eagerly anticipating this movie's release. As a little girl I used to tell people that I was Dr. McCoy's great, great, great grand daughter and then I realized that he was in the future so he'd actually have to be my great, great, great grandson. Yes I was that big of a geek even as a child. Zachary Quinto was perfect as Spock. I mean perfect! I'm gushing. I know I am...I can't help it. It was mind and eye candy in one movie. Did I mention the eye candy? Uh yeah, never had a thing for Kirk when I was a kid but Kirk now....uh he can be my captain any day!

But I ask you this: Would you not also have fallen for Captain Kirk if he'd always looked like this?


Chris Pine...well he's great. I had to look him up on IMDB and I discovered he was in Bottle Shock, which I loved. He just had a lot more hair in that movie.

I seem to be collecting new celebrity boyfriends with every new movie I see...so I'm gonna take Chris Pine too. I'm not sure what my hormone levels are at the moment, but without definitive testing I would say that I have returned to normal thirteen year old levels for some reason.

So I wonder when the next Trek convention is and how I can get there?

Why, its Greased Lightning!

We had an incident last night.

It resulted in Olivia having hair similar to that of Danny Zuko.

I was making dinner, my first attempt at mini-burgers, and was transferring a few to a paper towel to drain off excess fat (must work on trim figure for upcoming trip to Illinois). One of them rolled off the spatula and landed on the floor where my dear dog who should be known as Olivia the Canine Shop Vac, was waiting.

This mini-burger was super hot and I was afraid that in her fervor for a meat-tastic snack she would burn the crap out of her little tongue (and I am so not paying a vet to look at her tongue)! So I'm yelling at her to stop but of course my yelling is falling on deaf doggie ears because HELLO! It's meat! On the floor!

So I'm trying to block her with the spatula but end up whacking her in the head with it and as it was covered in burger grease so is she.

Am I a horrible mommy for hitting my child with a spatula?

I am trying to hobble around the kitchen with my boot and can't seem to get in her path to get the burger when I drip even more grease on her head because I still have the frying pan in my hand. Finally a friend who is over for dinner sees me hopping around with skillet, spatula and frantic dog and realizes what's happening. Being the owner of a Beagle she is quite skilled at retrieving food from pets and swoops in and steals the burger from Olivia.

So that is how Olivia became a Greaser. Now she needs a bath, but in the mean time I will give her mohawks and spikes. Because it's fun.

R├ępondez s'il vous plait?

I RSVP'd to a baby shower today.

:: waits for applause::

Yes, yes, thank you for the applause. No really, please I don't deserve that much accolade, but thank you. Thank you, thank you. Please, please be seated. Thank you, thank you.

Okay, so maybe not that big of a deal, but it was a step for me. A step to get over myself and attend an event for someone who totally deserves to be showered with presents and affection. So I'll make my adorable hand made flannel burp rags and go buy an almost equally adorable (hard to compete with my handiwork) outfit to go with it. I feel like a complete shit for missing the other baby showers I've been invited to so I'm making an effort to do the right thing from here on out.

I suspect it will give me lots of opportunity to try out some new totally inappropriate answers to equally inappropriate questions. Conversations will go like this:

Nosey Mc Snooperson: So you guys have been married almost nine years now right? When are you going to start popping them out?

Me: Funny you should ask. I was thinking about getting one from the black market. Did you know they still do that? Yeah, you can give someone like $200 dollars and voila you get a baby! It's like one of those prize bags at the Dollar store. You don't know what color, shape or size but you know it's gonna be awesome! Of course you have to keep that on the down low, there are always spies sniffing around about black market babies.

OR

Snoopy Snoopinpants: Are you and Scott going to have kids?

Me: Nope. We decided that with our genetic makeup a kid would be doomed the first day out on the playground so why bother? I mean why send some poor little thing who can't see, has bad teeth and sneezes so easily they should really live in a bubble out into the cruel, cruel world of recess? Instead we're going to try our hand at rabbit breeding. I hear it's very easy to get them to reproduce and then you get all these adorable little fuzz balls to play with.

Man, it would be so fantabulous to answer someone like that... Dreams and wishes my friends, dreams and wishes!

One step forward, and another one....

Scott and I went on our blood draw date yesterday. It was so romantic. Nothing says I love you like needles, vials, and a waiting room full of people wearing paper masks!

I've gotten quite used to the blood draw thing and it never really bothers me. Yesterday was no exception except that for the first time ever it was so quiet I could actually hear the vials fill up. That was odd. Scott does not like having his blood drawn so I offered to distract him by tap dancing on one leg. Thankfully he didn't take me up on that. The phlebotomist probably thought I was nuts.

We did ask the nurse if there had been a lot of people coming in for Swine Flu. She told us that 90% of the people coming into urgent care are convinced that they have it. It was easy to see that she thinks these people are idiots.

"It really isn't that bad you know, the normal flu will kill you worse," she said.

Well thank goodness for that! Though I don't know how something can kill you 'worse'. I mean if you're dead, you're dead right?

In superdeduperawesomesauce news I am walking! I can hobble on one crutch now no problem and even take a few steps here and there without any crutch. This is so incredibly freeing and wonderful I feel like doing a back handspring, but I won't because I would probably break something.

I can clean my house now, and go to the store by myself and I even reinstated my gym membership so I can go ride on one of the recumbent bikes. I'm gonna get back into shape and never take my ankle for granted again. I swear!

Pretty, pretty hunka hunka love...

I went to see a movie today. I'm a little afraid to even admit what I saw. I was in a theater surrounded by eleven year old girls who giggled incessantly. I had to look at my ticket again and verify that I was indeed seeing a PG-13 movie, not G or PG. I looked at my friend (can't reveal her name as I promised upon punishment of another broken ankle that I would not tell anyone she went to see this movie) who was with me and we looked at each other like "what did we get ourselves into?"

But then the movie started and it didn't matter. It was like a ray of sunlight straight from heaven had lit up the screen. It was handsome and adorable and oh so dreamy. I was myself transformed into an eleven year old girl smiling so large that my cheeks hurt. But how could I not? How could anyone woman who is of heterosexual persuasion not be totally enamored by this:


Um, he's pretty.

Yeah, I know I seem like a gross old lady for thinking he's the bee's knee's. But dammit if he isn't pretty. He will now replace Brad Pitt as my pretty crush. Brad irks me these days anyway (freaking baby collector and his weirdo girlfriend). And he's gonna be 22 in a few month (six) so he's only 6 years younger than me (really 9 but who's counting? I still get carded when I buy beer so I am choosing to be 28 today and every day for the rest of my 30's).

So yeah, we saw 17 Again, and I think it was actually pretty good. Even without my totally called for crushing on Mr. Efron the story was fun. Nice to go to a movie that makes you laugh. Now I think I will actually have to watch that whole High School Musical series. I looked it up and he was only 17 when they filmed the first movie so the lusting will have to be put on hold until the second movie... OMG I am such a gross old lady!

Okay, enough about my new boyfriend....

My husband and I are going to go have the last of our blood work done tomorrow. Then a saline ultrasound for me and we're off and running for IVF next month. I wonder if my kids will think Zac Efron is hot like I think George Clooney is?

More potty humor...

I'm sorry, I can't seem to help myself...

I really don't know why potty humor is so flipping hilarious. I'm a just over twenty something grown woman and I still can't stop myself from laughing at a well placed fart joke or crapped pants story. It's a little ridiculous but it is what it is. This week the running theme has been fecal matter and not just at work.

I took the "literal" swearing game home and shared it with Charity who has embraced it whole heatedly (I knew there was a reason she's my kindred spirit...she's Anne and I'm Diana btw). Even going so far as to post some of her uses on my Facebook page. She and I were in a fit of giggles the other night, verbally sparing with our new lingo when her husband Bruce, who had been sitting quietly with his laptop, looked up at both of us and very dryly said "you two are real sphincters." Which of course caused us to erupt into even more giggling and use that new word in excess.

But then Bruce tells us this story about a woman who works at the hospital where he works. She's a pretty high level admin just walking down a hallway when a sewer waste pipe explodes on her. Yes, she was covered in feces. This poor, poor woman. I can't even imagine the horror.

After our initial shock at this story, and our heartfelt comments like "I hope someone sends her some flowers or a gift card for something like that" we were back to giggling. And maybe we're horrible people (nasty co-worker who has been thorn in my side the last two weeks thinks so) but you have to laugh at things like that in life. What else can you do really? I'm sure if it happened to me I'd be outraged, and I'd cry, and then a week later I would think it was pretty damn funny (okay maybe more like a month later). That kind of thing just doesn't happen, and yet this poor lady really had a very horrible, rotten, traumatic day.

I had a few bad days at work, but a waste pipe didn't drop a crap load of waste on me...get it? Crap load? Yeah go ahead and groan and roll your eyes at me...

The good news is I had a meeting with another one of my bosses this week and she still loves me. Thinks I'm better then sliced bread. I didn't even have to seek out the praise or toot my own horn. She just gets me and appreciates me and that makes dealing with other things at work a lot easier. Plus I don't have to take a shower or get tested for Hepatitis after a walk down a hallway!

Hope you all have a great weekend, sans any fecal matter...

What the beep!

Today at work we somehow ended up on the topic of swearing. I am the first to admit that I might swear a little too much. I'm not constantly dropping the f-bomb or anything, but I might have been a sailor (or plumber) in a former life. We have one co-worker who almost never swears and then a few like me who occasionally let dirty word slip, and I'm not even sure how we progressed to this, but we started using the literal words in place of swear words. So someone would shout "Oh feces!" or "Fornication YEAH!" this was funny enough but it soon became a game to see how you could say it another way. So we had "When the fecal mater hits the fan, " and "Up Poop Creek without a paddle". All funny when in an office setting, but my favorite is the simple "Well feces," instead of swearing version for "how the fornication did this happen?" I think I might just use this while out and about someday, or maybe at a family function. I can't wait to see some reactions. As Chandler would ask "Could you BE any more childish?" Well you probably don't want to know the answer to that.

I am also on day three of no coffee. This is the worst thing ever. I know that giving up coffee and alcohol in preparation for things is good and necessary, but dang it if it isn't the most rotten way to start out. I already don't have a baby, now you want to take away caffeine and liquor? What do I have left? How will I remain perky? I know many of you think I'm just naturally chipper, but that's not really the case. I'm a fairly surly individual (did I mention the former life as a plumber?) who preforms well on warm cups of java, diet coke and hard cider. I am fearful that the real me will be revealed in the coming days and no one will like me anymore. I better get a baby out of all this. Seriously. No coffee = baby. Fair trade I think. Until a time when I am once again free to enjoy libations please understand that if I snap at you it's the caffeine withdrawal.

We interrupt this blog

for some reformatting....

It's not going to stay this way, I was just fooling around last night and ran out of time to put it all back. Ooops!

Getting Ready to Roll!

I spilled it to my boss today. Told him what's going to be going on in June and July. Must say that it went much better than I thought it would and he was surprisingly interested (in a good way) and supportive. He even mentioned to me that he and his first wife had gone this route to some extent and he knew how those appointments could be. He told me that it wasn't going to be an issue to come in late some mornings (blood draw and ultrasounds) and taking a few days (for egg removal and then transfer) would be okay too. Just asked that I give him a heads up on the days I'll be in late or out. This is a tremendous relief of course. I promised him I would minimize the impact on work as much as I could. The co-workers on the other hand will probably not take it as well. They absolutely hate it when I'm not in and due to the economic crunch we can't afford to have anyone come in and cover phones while I'm out. It will be even worse as I was already out for the foot surgery. The thing is, I have this vacation time, and I'm allowed to use it. Why have it if you can't take it off? Anyway, it was great of my boss to be so willing to listen and allow me the time I need.

But of course I trade one worry for the next...I was looking up how much meds cost for one cycle, and I knew they were spendy but wowza! I suppose this is what savings accounts are for right? I am truly blessed that my mom is helping us out with the IVF costs, but I figured I should try to contribute as much as possible and it seemed like meds was a good way to do that. I think I might have a garage sale or sell a kidney. Can you sell a kidney? That seems unethical at best, but I'm willing to consider it... I do have a great Kholer sink and some chairs I can sell and have been thinking about selling anyway. Craigslist here we come!

I did re-read the financial paperwork for the RE's office and we (mom) have got enough to do a One Plus cycle. That means we get one fresh cycle plus one frozen cycle if the first try doesn't work. It's like a mini insurance policy which makes me feel so much better about it all. The odds are like playing a game in Vegas so any extra tries are great. We're ready to roll the dice though!

Next step - more blood work. Scott and I having a blood draw date later in the week. So romantic.

In some extra good news, Monday is over so only four days left until the weekend!