Thursday, September 22, 2011

Celebrity SIF

I promise I'll be back this weekend with life updates and a MUCH belated Sock-it-to-me posting.

But I wanted to share a link I came across about actress Emma Thompson discussing her issues with depression, some of which were related to her dealing with Secondary Infertility.

Click HERE to read the article.

It's rare for most celebrities to mention or discuss fertility issues...especially with regards to secondary infertility. I was glad to see the issue brought to the limelight, though of course saddened that Ms. Thompson had to endure SIF issues at all.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Friday Night "Leftovers" (Back-to-School Edition)

Whew! The last 2 weeks have been a whirlwind of back-to-school busy-ness.

The amazing, wonderful Danifred over at Sippycups are Not for Starbucks often hosts "Friday Night Leftovers" in which bloggers can post random list-like updates that don't necessarily pertain to only one topic.... I thought I'd bounce out of my blogging lull by joining in the fun.

So now the "Leftovers..." The things I've been experiencing and mulling over the past few weeks.

--Em started first grade! And she turns 7 in 2 weeks....Such a beautiful young lady inside and out. I am grateful for her each day and can't believe how quickly she is growing up. Sighs.
--She seems to be adjusting to first grade pretty well. She was disappointed the first few days of school because only 2 of the 18 students from her kindergarten class are in her 1st grade class this year. (One is the class bully who always had a desk by himself while the other kindergartners sat in tables of 4....the kid who punched Emma in the arm when I was sitting right beside her on the bus ride for the zoo field trip last year....GRRRRR! The other is a sweet, super quiet girl whose primary language is Spanish...she and Emma get along, but Em tends to play with more "extroverted" kids.) Her other former classmates were dispersed to other 1st grade classes.
--Today marks the end of week #2 of school and Emma has made friends and shared stories of playing and interacting with her new classmates.
--She is excited to have her own desk and own books/notebooks/supplies (versus "community" markers, etc.) this year. While the desks are pushed together to form "tables," she still has a bit of independence, which is right up her alley.
--Her school opted to instate a uniform policy this year. (Yes, it's a public school.) Navy, white, or red polo shirt or plain t-shirt with khaki or navy pants/shorts/skirt/jumper. Emma has made me smile with her individuality as she wears socks and hair accessories that don't necessarily "coordinate" with her school attire. But I must say thus far getting ready in the morning has been SOOOOO much easier! No more battles and trying to re-negotiate on outfits chosen the night before.

Pics of Emma's first day:

Not sure what the kid in the background is so "surprised" about.

Notice the skull socks? A gift from my older sister, Michelle. If I remember correctly, Emma was wearing a pink hair bow in the back of her hair. I love my girl!

--Our 13th wedding anniversary is this weekend. (Which means we've been "together" for 16 years total---wow! Nearly half of my lifetime!) I am so fortunate to have him as a life partner. He helps me through highs and lows, cooks better and more frequently than I do, is a superb daddy for our Emma, and helps me to be a better person. Love ya, Aaron!
--Continues to keep on keepin' on with his writing. While still marketing his novel trying to obtain a literary agent, he has started writing yet another novel...amazing. I continue to be awed by his perseverance.

--My parents are coming to visit for Emma's birthday and are going to visit Disney World with us for two days! I am SOOOOO excited about this! They haven't been to Disney since I was a baby in the baby-pack on my Dad's back. I'm stoked to watch them interact with Emma while we show them around the parks. Emma has been watching and re-watching the Disney vacation planning DVD (free from the park website!) and talking non-stop about the rides and activities she wants to do with Grandma and Grandpa. Of course I always look forward to visiting with my parents, but this particular visit will likely have a special kind of magic. :)

--We have a new 6th grade administrator this year. He has helped to initiate amazing changes at my school. Though only the end of the 2nd week, we've had the smoothest opening-of-school since I started working at this school. There is a sense of calm and structure instead of the frenzied chaos of the last 2 years. Crossing my fingers that it lasts all school year...
--This Monday when I arrived at work there was a vase of carnations on my desk. The attached card was from my principal. The card thanked me for being the reading department head and stated that "children grow to love learning thanks to (me.)" I was amazed...SO nice to be acknowledged! I confirmed at lunchtime that flowers were placed on the desks of all subject area department heads. What a wonderful beginning of the year gesture to thank us for the time and effort we put in for NO extra pay!

--I had planned to post and question whether anyone else had felt "OUCH" this week when seeing multiple F.acebook posts "supporting breast cancer awareness" by playing a posting game....The following is cut/pasted from multiple messages in my FB inbox:
Ok pretty ladies, it's that time of year again, in support of breast cancer awareness!! Remember last year so many people took part that it made national news and, the constant updating of status reminded everyone why we're doing this and helped raise awareness!! Do NOT tell any males what the status' mean, keep them guessing!! And please copy and paste (in a message )this to all your female friends to see if we can make a bigger fuss this year than last year!!! I did my part... now YOUR turn! The idea is to choose the month you were born and the day you were born. Pass this on to the girls only and lets see how far it reaches around. The last one about the bra went round all over the world. So you'll write... I'm (your birth month) weeks and I'm craving (your birth date)!!! as your status.

Example: Feb 14th = I'm 2 weeks and craving Chocolate mints!!
January-1 week
Febuary-2 weeks July-10 weeks
March-3 weeks August-12 weeks
April-4 weeks September-13 weeks
May-6 weeks October-14 weeks
June-8 weeks November-16 weeks
December-18 weeks

(I'm not posting the super long 31 item list of candies and treats to "crave.")

If I had "played" along, I'd post: "I'm 4 weeks and craving Crunchies." First of all, I don't even know what the hell Crunchies are. Secondly, I was silently hurting a bit by reading about the multiple fake pregnancies of several FB friends. I fail to understand how posting and pretending to be PG is "supporting" breast cancer awareness. My 1st thought was that many cancer survivors are infertile due to the chemo and medications they endure to fight cancer. My 2nd thought was-- why are we are "NOT telling any males" about the "game?" How the heck can something promote awareness if you "hide" the purpose behind it? UGH. I had an internal rant (longer than this) ready to post. Then, I came across a blog, linked on FB by an old high school friend. I LOVE it. I completely agree with many of the author's points...

CGWardPhotography--Regarding the FB Breast Cancer Awareness Games

As much as we all hate to be part of the IF-world, it was nice to read that I am not the only person who found the "game" insensitive. What are your thoughts on the issue?

--Hopefully in the next few weeks I'll catch up....I have a cool "wax hand" post I need to write. I also need to update my books read list and postings.
--Off to start the 3 day weekend! :)

Edit: Upon blog-surfing this morning, I came across an entry today by the wonderful Mel over at Stirrup Queens. Another excellent post about how the cancer awareness games are hurtful to those experiencing infertility issues.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Back to School

Tomorrow is the first day of teacher planning week. BOO!!!!!!! Hiss!!!! Drat! Summer has been wonderful this year...LOTS of visiting with family, extended family and friends. Lots of pool visits and swimming with Emma. I hate to see it end!

An Emma-ism from the pool today: While trying to float on her back, "Look! I'm making pool angels!" Yup...definitely the same motion to create snow or sand angles...just in a swimming pool instead. :)

Something to look forward to...the amazing Kym over at The Smartness is hosting Sock-It-To-Me week again! If you are a sock lover (or office supply lover) go sign up! :)

Maybe now that "summer" is over, I'll be back in a blogging groove???

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summer Vay-Cay--Mostly Photos Edition Part II

Kicking myself for not taking photos of my parents, my older sister and her beau, or many pics with my younger sister....or pics of us with my friend Shannon and her family....sighs! But here's the rest of my favorites from what was captured on our camera:

Little Emma on the Prairie

We enjoyed our yearly visit to COSI, the amazing hands-on science museum in Columbus, OH. Auntie Laurel went with us.

(Excuse the fat rolls....but this pic was the best of the bunch.) :)

Em enjoyed playing in the "Kid Space" water area

Her water smock makes it look like she's going to Hogwarts. :)

Em thought it was cool to go inside this submarine.

My college friend Michelle hosted a cook-out at her house, where we were able to catch up with many of our friends from Ohio U.

Shannon (Michelle's daughter) and Emma

Molly's son Graham

Kasy with her youngest son, Trace.

Emma enjoyed playing on the Slip-0n-Slide--her first encounter using one.

Me and Michelle ("assigned" roommates at OU, but friends for life!)

Molly and I---pals since freshman year at OU

OU Girls: Sharon, Michelle, Shelly, Me, Molly, Kasy, Randie

I attended the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II" movie with my sister Laurel and DH. LOVED IT!!!!!!!!!!

Emma, DH, and I went to the amazing Ohio Theater with my parents. Located in downtown Columbus, the theater shows old movies on weekends during the summer. Emma was fascinated with the organ player who played before the movie and during intermission. We saw "The Sound of Music." Neat to see one of my favs on the big screen! Pics below are of the gorgeous theater:

Grandpa took Emma to see the organist up close.

Emmaism: in the middle of the movie Emma leaned over, "Is that man STILL in the stage?" regarding the organist whose organ lowered into the stage before the movie started. I had to explain that he has a hallway underneath the stage to get out... too funny!

Fashion Show:
For many years, Emma has enjoyed playing with my parents' neighbors' children. This year she had multiple playdates with their 4-year-old neighbor, Rachel. A highlight of summer was when the girls created tickets and put on a "Fashion Show" for us using the play-clothes from Grandma's basement.

Emma---making pirate clothes look chique.

Rachel's princess attire.

Cracks me up...

Emma's Chinese/pirate/beaded necklace look

Edit: Per her request, I just "show(ed) our vacation pictures" to Emma. She was upset stating, "I. AM. NOT A PIRATE!" Duly noted.

Bring on the pink!

A bit of flair

The girls at the end of the show. :)

Em was excited to bike ride at my parents' house. The training wheels on this bike are a lot higher than those she is used to. With any luck, we'll be taking the training wheels off soon. (Though between high heat and lots of rainy afternoons, we haven't done much bike riding this summer!) (And YES we have a helmet at our house, but didn't have one for this bike at my bad parenting comments, please!)

Candid of me with my sister Laurel. We had many board-game nights while in Ohio. I <3 board games! :)

We bring our dog with us when we visit my parents. (Boarding large dogs costs nearly $100 a day!) He LOVES the fresh country air and playing with the dogs that belong to my parents' neighbors. Below: Viggo and Emma chillin' in Grandma and Grandpa's living room

We had a great trip!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Summer Vay-Cay--Mostly Photos Edition

Today is my 3 year blogoversary. Thanks to those who continue to read and offer comments of love and support, I appreciate you!

At the end of June my sister Laurel visited for a few days. We attended Emma's end of the year dance recital. Photography and video weren't allowed inside the actual auditorium, but here are some cute pics that I captured before dress rehearsal (picture ballet shoes instead of C.rocs and before the recital)

And the marquee at the theater the night of the rehearsal:

The rest of the week was spent on adventures: paddle boating (check out our scary story in my last post,) going to the beach, and hanging out. Auntie Laurel also taught Emma how to blow a bubble-gum bubble:

July: Emma and I then traveled with Laurel to Wisconsin (with a one-night pit stop in Ohio) in order to visit with our extended family there. We had a fabulous time visiting our cousins, attending a large family reunion, and getting a "tour" of sites around the city where my dad grew up courtesy of our Aunt Nan who acted as an amazing tour guide.

While Laurel spent a day visiting a high school buddy who now lives in Green Bay, Emma and I were able to visit the Betty Brinn Children's Museum in Milwaukee with my 2 cousins, and 4 of my first-cousins-once removed (I think---that's what my first cousin's children would be, right?)

We spent much of our time at the museum exploring the "Home Town" area where the kiddos could try out a variety of careers...

News Casting (Kyle and Taylor)

Camera Crew (Ashley)

Weather Girls (Taylor and Brittany)

Bank Teller (Em)

Postal Workers (Em and Brittany)

Bus Riders (Driven by Taylor)

Kyle enjoyed "working" at the supermarket deli

Ashley and Emma worked as auto mechanics.

Brittany and Taylor worked at a construction site.

Ashely, Kyle, and Em in the "backyard playground" area

The girls really enjoyed the arts and crafts center at the museum.

Kyle and Em watched a movie and relaxed at my Aunt Nan's house.

The next day my cousin Nicole and Aunt Nan drove Laurel and I around to see local Racine sites:

The home my Dad and his sibling were raised in.

We also took Emma bowling--her first time!

Emma with 2nd cousins Kyle, Brittany, and Ashley

Em gets ready for a roll...

This pic cracks me up...they didn't pose. (Em and Kyle are both 6 and played together wonderfully during our visit!)

Emma at the July 4th parade

Our last day in WI we ate lunch at Kewpee's (one of only 2 Kewpee diners still existing in the U.S.)
Left: Laurel, Emma, Ashley Right: Kyle, Aimee, Brittany

The farm house my grandma (Dad's mom) grew up in.

Back: Nicole, Me, Rachel, Laurel
Front: Taylor, Emma

Laurel, Emma and I stayed at the home of my cousin Nicole and her husband. They are a doggie-shelter house and have 8 rescue dogs currently living with them. Emma LOVED playing with all the pups!

After Wisconsin, we returned for 2 weeks in Ohio (where DH joined us for our annual family vacation.)

My hometown had a "Chalk on the Walk" contest Emma participated in.

She won this ginormous cupcake in a game at the Chalk on the Walk event.

Whew! That's all for now....will finish posting in a day or so. Happy summer everyone!