Sunday, September 7, 2014

My "Baby" Girl

September 4th marked Alexandra's first official day of preschool! What made it even more real is that the UPK program is housed at her home elementary school (a pre-k through grade 5 building). I can't believe we have gotten to this point. My baby is a school-ager (kind of).

Dan brought her to orientation the day before, which lasted about an hour. I was bummed that I wasn't going to be the one to take her, since I had to work...AND that I wouldn't be able to drop her off and pick her up...BUT I will make sure I am there for her first day of kindergarten next year...even if that means taking the second day of work off for me!!!!

To put a kink in things, Tuesday was my first day back to work and, on the way to pick up the girls from daycare at about 3:30, my phone rings because Alex has a fever of 101.6. So she was sick all that day, threw up in her bed that night :( and was still sick for her orientation. It was only an hour, so Dan gave her advil so she could still go. The next day, she didn't go to daycare in the morning, but was able to do pre-school in the afternoon. AND.....she loved loved loved it!!!!!! I mean, seriously! She was bummed on Saturday when she couldn't go to preschool and keeps saying that she likes it "super more" than daycare, lol. I'm so glad she likes it and is excited about it!

So the remainder of the week went like this: Alex is pretty much all better by Thursday afternoon, I come down with a nasty cold and sore throat Friday and Saturday, Hayden is running a fever Friday and Saturday, and Dan has some sort of body ache/ virus Friday and Saturday. Ugh-the house of illness!!!! Welcome back to school/work, lol!

This week will be busy (and hopefully germ free!). We have gymnastics on Wednesday night and we start soccer again on Saturday morning. Not to mention, I'm starting my 24 day clean-eating challenge. I'm trying to jump start my new healthy way of life. Who knows....maybe this will get my pcos to calm the *bleep* down and get me ovulating. I'm not **planning** to have another baby, I will not do treatments again. BUT, if I'm ovulating, at least I can have a *choice* in the future to try for a third. Whether we do that or not...I don't know quite yet.

Look how big she is!!!!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Summer = Amost Unofficially Over

**Sad Face** Where did it go????? How can summer be coming to a close??? I'm definitely NOT ready...even MORE not ready than usual!!!!

I know I really need to suck it up. After all, this will be the first school year I have worked the ENTIRE school year since 2011-2012. But that's just it...I'm facing 9-10 months of craziness. It feels a bit daunting when you're looking at that head on, before even starting.

And I like my job, most of the time. I **generally** like the people I work with and, as a school psychologist, no day is ever the same. BUT...I just got used to being home with my girls.

Don't get me wrong. Some days I feel ready to go back. But those moments are usually found in the midst of meltdowns and dirty houses and cooking dinner with a wailing child on the floor. They are just moments, fleeting and short. I'm torn...I'm caught between **wanting** to BOTH work AND be home with the girls. Because I do like my job. And if I really wanted to stay home full-time, it would mean changing our life style drastically, BUT we COULD do it.

The thing is...I like our lifestyle, I like my job, I like being outside of the home part of the time (although, I wish it were only for like 2-3 days of work, versus 5), I like meeting new people, I like problem solving....I like knowing that I can support myself and my kids if Dan were ever injured or couldn't work. It gives me a sense of security.

But I also totally get why parents choose to stay home!!! The thought is VERY tempting after a long day. Part of the reason I went into school psychology versus clinical psychology is SO I would have a family friendly job. And I do. I'm out by 3:25 everyday, don't work weekends or nights and have 10 weeks off in the summer, not counting a week or two at Christmas, a week in February and a week in April (not to mention the "little" holidays). So I like to think I have the best of both worlds...but it's still a hard transition, to go back and face an entire year!!!

Ok. That was kind of a pep talk for myself!!!

This year will be busy busy busy!  Alexandra is going into pre-school and will be starting the UPK program at her home elementary school! It is a half day program, five days a week. She will be going to daycare in the morning, where they are also working on a pre-k curriculum, and then Dan will pick her up and bring her to preschool in the afternoon. We already bought her Frozen backpack that she is in love with...and I'm sure every second girl will have the same one! But whatever...she's happy!

We went shopping for her first supplies list ever! It was so strange, buying all that school stuff for her...and I just have no idea where time has gone. The adage about days being long and years being short are so very true! Btw--I don't remember ever getting supplies lists back in the 80's when I was in elementary school....Is this a relatively new thing???

Alex also has gymnastics on Wednesday nights and soccer on Saturday mornings. That's right, I'm going to be a soccer mom sitting in a sports chair and sipping my coffee-probably in sweats! I'm excited though, because I can leave Hayden with Dan and just have that one on one girl time with Alex! She wanted to do dance as well, but I think two activities is more than enough for us for now.

So will be a very busy year--especially with Hayden getting more vocal and even more active and into things!

So here's to hoping this school year is a good one!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Our FET Anniversary!

Yesterday marks TWO years to the day since we transferred our last, little frozen five day known as Hayden!!!

We had such little hope for that cycle. I pretty much marked it as a formality just to "get through" so we could continue on (in good conscience) with another fresh cycle. It's amazing how life delivers these surprises!

We went through a lot in those early days. Low HCG levels (I think it was 25.5 at 15 dpo), being slightly behind in growth in the beginning (five days behind via ultrasound...the nurse said it could go either way), then our four day  NICU stay for reflux issues. But Hayden is here....spunky, funny, beautiful, healthy, smart. She has such a strong personality somehow fits with her being a fighter and survivor early on. Love her so very very much....

 My five day frozen blastocyst, right before transfer 

 My first + test with Hayden, the line was barely there!

 Our first ultrasound at 4 something weeks...she was tiny tiny tiny

 Getting bigger, but still behind in growth...told it could go either way...

 All caught up!!!! And near term at this point!

And now for some present day photos!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014


I am SOOOOOOO excited!!! Beyond excited! I feel like a kid again!

We just planned and booked our Disney World vacation for right after Christmas!!!

We thought about waiting a few more years until Hayden is old enough to take part in more things and so she'll actually remember stuff but decided that Alex is just at such a magical age right now where she BELIEVES and LOVES all that princess stuff. This trip is really for her! Because she is going to lose her mind and I want to see her face and experience that magic right along with her!!! I'm not saying that she won't love it when she is eight or nine, but right now she will believe that an actress dressed up as Cinderella is ACTUALLY Cinderella...and the castle is ACTUALLY her castle! That's the magic right there!

As for Hayden, I'm sure we'll be planning another trip in about four years when she is five and Alex is eight! It's only fair, right (lol)???

So we are staying at a Disney Resort that looks pretty sweet. It has awesome pools and a super cool kiddy pool too!

We will be there for six nights...we leave the Saturday after Christmas (like two days later) and get in at about 2pm. We'll probably just relax and swim that day and explore the resort.

We are then going to the Magic Kingdom on Sunday and Monday for the whole day. We have a lot of things planned, but one of the highlights will be a character lunch at Crystal Palace-featuring Winnie the Pooh and all of his friends. I also intend to use one of our Fast Passes for a meeting with Elsa and Anna ;) Alex will lose her mind! My kid is a Frozen addict!!! We'll also make sure to hit Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain and the brand new Seven Dwarves rollercoaster ride thing, which looks awesome!

Tuesday will be a day of semi-rest. We'll do the pool in the morning and then Alex got into the Bibbity Boppity Boutique for 3pm. If you have no idea what this is...Google it! It's a must for girls wanting glamorous princess makeovers!!! It's amazing we actually got in too, since we didn't book it the full six months in advance-we totally got lucky!!!! After that-Alex will be all dressed up and we go to dinner at 1900 Park Fair. This will be so awesome because it's dinner with Cinderella, Prince Charming, the step mother and step sisters. Apparently the interactions with the step-mom and sisters is hilarious! And Alex will be dressed up and I just love that!

Wednesday we are doing the Animal Kingdom and Thursday we are doing Epcot...we have another character meal that day at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall...Alex will be eating lunch with almost ALL THE PRINCESSES!

Friday we fly out at we have most of the day to lounge around the pool and hang at the resort! you can see from the sheer number of exclamation marks-I'm totally stoked! We really did the itinerary with keeping Alex's personality and desires in mind. This trip is for her. I cannot cannot cannot wait to see her face!

Plus, we are going around Christmas time, and everything will really be decked out! ANNNDDDD....I'm sure there will be some fun happenings for New Year's!

Planning was a bit stressful, especially because many people book things 180 days out...but we got reservations for everything we wanted..which was extremely lucky!!! Now I'm pouring over all the Disney World tip blogs and am getting slightly obsessed, lol....

C's IVF Update...

Kind of weird that I'm dedicating so much time to this issue! Kind of feel like my friend needs her own blog! for the big update....

As I reported last time, C., had seven seemingly beautiful day three embryos that were being sent out for PGD. All seven were graded as threes or fours (four is the best).

She got her PGD results on Saturday and learned that of those seven embryos, only two were girls....and BOTH were unhealthy! One would have been born with Down Syndrome, and one lacked another X chromosome, so it would never have resulted in a pregnancy.

Two other male embryos were also unhealthy. SO in the end, she had three male embryos that were left that appeared to be perfectly healthy, based upon the tests they run. However, they only run tests looking for certain disorders.

To make a long story short (which I'm not good at)...C., and her husband were super upset! They could not believe that they had no healthy female embryos. They just naturally thought that IVF would work the first time, which I think a lot of people think is a given--especially if you don't really have fertility problems.

And I'll be honest here...I'm a human and not every part of me is good and kind. I was truly sad to see C., so upset, but kind of relieved that it didn't work. They had no respect for the process, the process had lost its integrity. The embryos had lost their integrity.

**** Now let me make this very clear....I would never have wished anything "bad" to happen to C., or the pregnancy if she got pregnant. I would never wish a miscarriage on anyone. But I'm kind of satisfied that it didn't work. She was just so sure it would, so cocky about it. And believe me. I know how bad that sounds and I read it and cannot believe I'm actually writing that down! I'm not that type of person...but this situation....its just been hard.

So on the day that would have been C.,'s transfer, they met with the doctor and decided to freeze the three male embryos. C., said that she would have just gone and transferred one, despite it being male...because, while she wants a girl, she wants a little baby more. Her husband, however (in an extra douche-y move), talked her out of it.

So they are going to try another IVF cycle for a girl. And this is where I get upset again because they will be making EVEN MORE embryos that will never be used...all for their quest for a girl. And they are going to try to get insurance to cover it...again. Which really makes me insane! They just seem so ungrateful! And they are using the system completely....

So yeah...that part really sucks...even more embryos going to waste. My satisfaction was short lived when I thought about that.

Friday, August 8, 2014


Ok, so I guess one good thing to come out of C's cycle is that I am remembering my own IVF cycle and how very terrible it was...and realize again how lucky we are!!! I mean, seriously, would COULD go wrong DID!!! I've been reading through some of those old posts and I am shocked that I had a baby out of that cycle. So I'm going to post a link to the start of my IVF cycle, my baseline, for anyone that wants to read about how bad the whole thing was (follicles not responding, shrinking lining, decreasing estrogen levels, broken vials of Lupron, etc etc)! Or if you know anyone going through IVF who is discouraged, send them the's proof that a beautiful baby can come from a completely screwed up, crazy protocol, cycle. Of course, our fresh transfer didn't work...but our frozen from this completely crazy cycle did!!!

This link is for my FET, where I conceived Hayden. It talks about the process and about the "early days" with Hayden when we didn't know if she was going to actually make it...I love that I have all of this documented. It reminds me of what a fighter she was. Not so surprising that she's so spunky today!

Hope this helps someone!!!


In my last post, I told you all about my friend "C"., who is having IVF for the only reason of gender selection. I made my feelings well known.

SO...just to update, and because the whole thing is making me are the stats:

C., had her retrieval on Tuesday and they got ten eggs; seven were fertilized.

They called her today to say that ALL seven were still growing and looked beautiful-they were all three's and four's (a grade of four on day three is the best). Kind of not surprised by this, since she doesn't have fertility issues after all!!!

They are sending all of the embryos out for PGD today and she should know by Sunday if she has any healthy girls in the mix. With seven, I'm sure she does.

So like I said, this whole thing is making me crazy and I'm struggling to handle it with grace. It's not my life, my body, my embryos...but I still don't have to like what she is doing. It is out of my control though.

One thing that bugs me is that all seven embryos are doing great. I know this sounds odd to complain about, but that means there potentially could be SIX healthy embryos that are completely discarded "just because". This really upsets me. It upsets me when I think of how hard I worked for my babies and how hard so many women are still working.

I'm not overly religious, I'm not that into organized religion (although I do believe in God and do pray almost daily for the safety of my kids and family--something no one really knows about me). I support gay rights completely, stem cell research, I'm fairly liberal...but this just seems wrong to me.

When she told me the news, I actually felt like crying. I was hoping she wouldn't have so many, that there would be less being discarded.

And I'm also wondering where the "fairness" is! Out of 21 eggs retrieved, I only had one healthy enough to make my beautiful baby. I went through hell that cycle. Everything that COULD go wrong, did. I'm so extremely lucky we have Hayden here with us. And she just gets to float through her cycle on a cloud with everything, everything going perfectly. Ugh...all those healthy embryos :/

So I'm just having trouble with the whole thing. I went into IVF after giving it a lot of thought. I knew that we wouldn't discard any of our embryos, even though I have only every wanted 2 or 3 kids. But as I see it, I had a responsibility to ALL of those embryos because WE chose to create them. We would have also considered embryo adoption if we had a ton left over. Because lets face it, I'm pretty sure I couldn't handle six kids, lol. I guess it's important, more so than I realized to me, that the integrity for life stays in the whole process.

 I fully realize that I sound "holier than thou"...but no thought went into this on her part. All she could think about was that she wanted, "needed" a girl. She didn't consider any moral dilemmas. At least if you're going to do this...truly think about it, understand what you're doing, even if you make a decision to discard. Don't just go into it with a flippant, blase attitude without doing the research. And perhaps this is what bugs me most of all by this situation.