Saturday, January 28, 2012

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Giving ICLW a shot again and hoping that finding time to participate won't cut into practicing for my calculations assessment next week. My procrastination must end soon! For those of you who don't know about ICLW, check in out in my side bar. You can find mine and the other 111 blogs and get more info here.

You can go here to find more about me (and Matt) here. Right now, I'm waiting to ovulate on our second round of 100mg Clo.mid. I feel a lot going on down there, lots of tugging and cramping, so I am hopeful once again that it is doing it's job. I am already dreading what this will all feel like if I have to up the dosage next month. And then if next month doesn't work, we're onto the lap and an RE referral.

I am very excited that my doula business seems to finally be picking up. I had to turn down a client for once because I already had two clients due around the same time. And, I am now able to stay at my nanny job as long as I would like to and they don't mind that I will likely be on call a big chunk of the time! I could not be more thrilled that I get to keep taking care of this kiddo (and hopefully start making money doing something I love.) I will still be applying to a grad school program so I might have school starting back up in August with any luck. Anything but a for real nursing job right now.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

I had my first day of my last semester of nursing school yesterday. The instructor talks faster than anyone I have ever met and is just kind of a spaz, bouncing from story to story and having random little bursts of energy where she calls on people. I bit all my finger nails off during class today. No more anti-anxiety meds like I had last semester since they don't really go along with making a baby. I can't believe I have 115 days left until I am done with this first step in my schooling. I have to start applying to grad schools pretty soon which seems insane! I am hoping to stick with my nanny job for a bit longer and just start picking up more and more doula clients. I am putting myself out there more and more and really seeing it pay off!

The Clo.mid is making me feel very stupid lately. Two days ago, I took a whole shower before realizing that I had socks on and then around 3pm, a cashier at walmart let me know my shirt was on inside out. It just makes me feel like a ditz. I am also feeling like I just can't sit still, some sort of Clo.mid induced ADHD or something. I fidgeted so much in class the last two days that I drove myself crazy. I'm on cd 7 right now, so only one more dose of Clo.mid left (and hopefully only one more day of having to deal with these headaches too.) I am already feeling bloated which kind of worries me for what is to come but I am sure we will make it through. There is talk of upping it to 150mg for one last shot next month before the lap get scheduled for late April/early May.

There is just so much excitement coming this year and I am ready for every bit of it!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

I guess I should be thankful in some odd way that I don't have some crazy long luteal phase. Clo.mid has given me pretty consistent 28 or 29 day cycles so I knew I wouldn't have to wait long to find out if this month had been just another bust. I spent all day yesterday in a lovely place of both hope & optimism, as well as resilience and resolve. I aimlessly searched through charts on fertility friend that looked like mine, comparing my symptoms and such, went to bed with thoughts of how I would tell Matt, and dreamed about cherub faces. So of course, I wake up to Aunt Flo and all her cramping glory (and seem to have lost most of the feel good thoughts of yesterday.) Like ripping off a great big band-aid all at once. I'm thankful that I don't have anything to do until this afternoon. I have to go pick up my Maid (err, Matron) of Honor dress with the bride and then I have a meeting with a potential doula client tonight. That particular meeting could have fallen on a better day but such is this odd life I live. I was telling a friend today about how sometimes I feel like a bit of a masochist, even if my passion for pregnant women and the glories of childbirth came before the infertility. I really love what I do and can't imagine ever wanting to do anything else but right now it just seems like self cruelty.

We got a very beautiful, light dusting of snow while I slept and there are still quite a bit of flurries coming down. Since the high is only 25, it's pretty likely it will stick around and look pretty for a while. Watching my dogs lose their minds in it seems to cushion the blow just a bit. I have to pack for my weekend long board meeting at some point today and then I get to be fake and cheery for a couple days. I also get to start the Clo.mid again while I'm there which should add an interesting bit of emotion to the whole ordeal.

I want to ruin this whole eating healthy, losing weight, running a 5k track and eat a bowl of chocolate icing right now. But I won't. I guess.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

I have kept myself very busy over this semester break which has meant that very few of the projects for our house that I had meant to do, just haven't gotten done. Since school starts back up next Tuesday, I knew I was running out of time and I am finally being able to check some boxes off my forever long to-do list. You may notice some changes around the blog (and this blog too) and changes around my house as well.

We have been wanting a headboard for some time now but I could never find one that I liked for less than a couple hundred dollars. Thankfully, I have become a Pinterest addict and found this great tutorial a couple of weeks ago. It was a lot simpler than I thought it might be and there is just something about going into Lowe's and knowing exactly what you need that makes you feel like a real grown up.

First you will need to get 18, 10inx10in squares of any kind of wood. I used 1/4in thick plywood since it was the cheapest. Lowe's said they generally don't make project cuts for people but they happened to be pretty slow the day that I was there. So I paid $11.65 for a big sheet of 1/4in plywood and 10 cuts (and only $5 more), I had all the squares needed for the headboard and then some. I then bought another piece of plywood, this time 1/2in thick and had them cut a 28x58 piece to serve as the backboard part (the part that will be mounted to the wall) which cost me another $13.97. I bought some Liquid Nails for $3 and a picture mounting bracket that promised to hold up to 200lbs ($11) and then I was on my way. 
My next stop was Hobby Lobby to find some fabric that would go along with my new black sheets. I would be cutting the fabric into 13x13in squares so I quickly did some math to figure out I needed just over 3 yards total. If I had remembered my 40% off coupon, I would have saved even more money but it was still only $14.97 total. Then I grabbed two bags of poly-fill for $2.98 each and headed home to get started.
I borrowed a staple gun from some friends which saved me from that expense. I used my rotary fabric cutter and cut all my fabric first. I started stapling the fabric to the squares, making sure I had them fairly centered on the front (though if you choose solid colors, you will not have to deal with that.) I just stuffed the poly-fill inside along the way, making sure it was not lumpy. This was the most time consuming part for sure and that staple gun made me hand so sore (and it was super loud.) After what seemed like an eternity, I finally had 18 squares completed and ready to go.
I brought in my 28x58 slab and laid all the squares out onto it, making sure that none of that plywood shown through. Then, one by one, I applied the liquid nails to the back and affixed it to the board. I used an extra piece of plywood from the cut that I didn't need to apply some extra weight to make sure they were really secure. I let them dry overnight and then the following day, I flipped it over and attached the bracket. The bracket I bought came with it's own level which was really nice, especially when applying the bracket to my bedroom wall. It was a bit of a trick figuring out where it needed to go on the wall and finding a place to put our bed that wasn't just right in front of one of the windows, but I finally found the perfect spot. 
I am really happy with the way it turned out and I think Matt was pretty impressed. And of course, we immediately started talking about getting a king size bed at some point over the next few months, but I have no problem moving this to a guest room and figuring out how to make a king size one for us! I hope this helps a few of you to have the confidence that you can make your own headboard too! 
1/4in thick plywood- $11.65
                10 cuts   -  $5.00
1/2in thick plywood- $13.97
Liquid Nails-             $3
Mounting bracket-    $10.97
Fabric-                      $14.67
Poly-fill- $2.99x2  =  $5.98  
TOTAL COST===$65.24

As for my lady parts, I will know one way or another in just a couple more days and then we will go from there. Either quiet celebration and secrecy or onto another cycle. I feel strangely hopeful but I know that there will be a lot of free wine at my strategic planning meeting this weekend if things don't turn out the way I'd like.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

We had too much fun trying to get a pic w/ us both in it

I have made New Years resolutions the past few years (2010 here and 2011 here) so I thought I'd carry the tradition over while updating all my lurkers about this Clomid cycle and adding in random pictures from our fun Christmas hike out near the Buffalo River.

I have also been inspired by Keiko over at Hannah Wept, Sarah Laughed and decided to join her in living a fertile life in 2012 and take on 12 months, and 12 challenges. It basically means that each month you focus on one specific challenge. You do something every day for one whole month. It seems easy enough. I love the way she laid her goals out in six different focus areas and have decided to do the same. These six focus are nourishment, connection, balance, movement, creation, and exploration which means there are two months to focus on each area. I have laid my year out as follows:

  • January: (nourishment)- I am going to get back to being faithful to my diet program with the shakes. I promise to drink a shake, replacing at least one meal a day, preferably two. I had a delicious mocha latte shake for breakfast this morning (as well as the last few days) so I feel like I'm already on track. This will hopefully help me make up for not gaining or losing a single pound during the past month.
  • Febuary: (balance)- I plan to do yoga every single day. I won't make myself promise to do it for any certain amount of time or anything, 5 minutes, 50 minutes, it will all be beneficial. I find it particularly enjoyable after running. And a nice quick walk in the mornings usually means I am not as sore during the day after a run.
  • March: (movement)- I will run or at least walk every day this month. My first 5k is March 21st so there will be a lot of training anyway and I need to make sure not to use my rest days to just be a couch potato.
  • April: (exploration)- I promise to go on a hike EVERY SINGLE DAY, even if that means I have to get up early. I live way too close to some beautiful trails to not make this a goal. I think it will be the perfect weather (even if a bit wet) and I can't wait to start seeing the signs of forest life start to emerge again. 
  • May: (connection)- I don't talk to my family and friends on the phone very often (including my husband). I avoid the phone quite a bit, even ignoring calls in my lap sometimes. I don't really know why. I will change this, even if only for the month and promise to call one family member or close friend each day, even if just to tell them how much I love them and miss them. 
  • June: (balance)- This will likely be the month that I will be taking the NCLEX and getting my first nursing job. I promise myself to find at least 10 minutes every day to meditate and do some deep breathing. I know this month is likely to be a little hectic, packed with studying and learning new responsibilities, so it will definitely take some effort not to let myself get off kilter.
  • July: (nourishment)- This is my favorite time of year to go to the Farmer's Market. So much variety and you have to get out there nice and early before the heat kills you. I just love getting up early and coming home with a bag full of fruits and veggies and possibilities. So every day this month, I will cook something good for us with at least one ingredient from our awesome local Farmer's Markets.
  • August: (exploration)- I will explore new worlds every day through reading. I hope to read at least 5 new books this month, reading a little bit every day.
  • September: (creation)- In preparation for the coming cooler weather, I will knit every day. Matt thinks I should knit him a Tom Baker scarf (and kudos if you know who that is) so perhaps that is just what I will do.
  • October: (movement)- Call it cheating, but I just really love hiking. I will hit the trails every day this month exploring and moving my legs. Something about just slipping my hiking boots puts butterflies in my belly. 
  • November: (creation)- NaBloPoMo! I will blog every day. And with any luck, we will have more that enough to write about!
  • December: (connection)- I will spend 30 minutes every evening with no tv, no radio, no computer, just loving on my husband. Time for us to cuddle and catch up and draw another year to a close.
Matt is way out there pondering the meaning of life
I wanted a cliche picture on Hawksbill Crag too.
Last year, I improved upon 2010's goal of learning to cook a new meal each month (which I came close to accomplishing in 2010) by learning to cook new slow cooker meals that could be frozen and thrown into the crockpot for long days full of school and work. Unfortunately, this did not happen. Instead, we eat way too many frozen healthy choice dinners. I eat a lot of meal replacement shakes too. For this next year, I want to get back into meal planning and I promise that to cook an entirely home cooked meal at least once a week. Weight loss was in my goal last year and I start this year off 23lbs lighter than the last. It will continue to be in my goals for the rest of my life as I realize it is about changing my entire life. I will be running my first 5k at the end of March and hope this year will be a great year as far as reaching my weight loss goals.  The last two years I have made it a goal to recycle more and we definitely did that during the past year. There were many weeks that we had to put out only our recycling can and it felt really nice to feel like we really did reduce the amount of waste coming from our home. During the coming year, I would love to further simplify our lives, though I am just not sure what form that will take just yet. Two years ago I was hoping to get into the NWACC nursing program and today, I have only two more classes to take before I get my Associate Degree in Nursing and can take the NCLEX exam to be an RN. It feels like it has just flown by and it's kind of terrifying to be so close to so much autonomy. By this time in 2013, I would like to be enrolled in some sort of school once again, furthering my education and taking even more steps in my journey to change the maternity care system in our nation. Last year, I said "Optimism is always a good goal, but some days it seems to out of reach when everything starts to pile up. I just have this feeling that 2011 will contain a lot less self pity and bitterness." 2011 definitely brought more joy than sadness and more success than failure and I go into 2012 with that same optimism, that it will only continue to get better and better. Two years ago, I made it a goal to complete my DONA certification and while I still haven't quite accomplished that, I'm definitely closer than I was then. I got my workshop out of the way last July and my first certification birth in September. Right now, I'm just waiting on two more clients to come out of the woodwork so I can finish it up. I need to take a childbirth education class through the hospital as well. It sure would be nice to have it done by 2013... We hadn't yet reached out for fertility tests last New Year's Day but I feel a little bit closer today than I did then. I had many more goals in the past few years but I don't really find them as relevant today. I will stick with a goal a month and I know it will take me through this amazing year ahead of us that will be full of so many changes.

We climbed down a few levels to explore inside the waterfall
Hope you enjoyed the random hiking pictures. We traveled out to Hawksbill Crag on Christmas day for a lovely picnic and time away from it all. I ovulated yesterday (or last night) which is fun! Got a very positive opk on Friday night and then again yesterday, and back to negative today. We have definitely covered our bases and the clomid let me know it was working. I felt like my ovaries had swollen to baseballs and I had some killer cramping going on (and still have something going on down there.) I added in a new prenatal with a separate DHA supplement with it as well as baby aspirin. Hoping all the pieces fall together. And if not, we'll do this two more times and then I'll go under the knife. Fun times. I think a blog redo is coming soonish. I may actually pay someone to do it for me. So stay tuned...

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