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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Happy Birthday to a Sweet Girl...

Today a lovely little girl turns two .... happy birthday sweet Violet!

Sweet girl - this day brings back so many lovely and wonderful memories.  Two years ago I woke up with contractions and knew it was time for your arrival.  It was such an incredible experience giving birth to you and watching your parents embrace you.  Time is flying and I cannot believe how big you are getting ... I truly hope you are enjoying your birthday.

This year I am not close enough to drive up for a birthday visit....but I just recently got the cutest little pictures.  Thank you M&M!

Many hugs and kisses from Auntie Fie!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Over the first hurdle...

This morning I went to take my placement test for getting into A&P (anatomy & physiology) in the Spring semester ...and tada I passed!!!  Woohoo...I am so excited!

Passing this placement test was really important because it will allow me to directly enroll into the A&P class without having to take full blow biology and chemistry classes first.  Timing was also extremely important, as I hope to get accepted into the nursing program for Fall 2012.  In order to start the program in the fall, I will need to have completed A&P I and II as well as micro-biology.  The only way to get these classes done, will be to take A&P I along with microbiology in the spring and A&P II in the summer semester.

I foresee lots of homework in my future.....but I am really excited about that.  So here is to waiting and praying for the College of Nursing to accept my application as well.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The 411...

I met with Dr. E today ... am I any smarter than yesterday?  Nope - not really, but I am more informed and that was my whole intention behind the consult - to be informed.  To be re-affirmed that I am not "broken" and that I have options *IF* I want them.

Pregnancy carries risk, infertility treatment and carrying someone else's dreams carries risks - heck life carries risk.  Risk level is an individual comfort zone, but button line is that should I choose to be pregnant again then I can.  Will there be a statistically higher risk for me than someone without my history?  Sure but not that significantly greater and I would feel comfortable with that risk level.

Placental abruption happens and not all that much is known as to why (unless of course it is resulting from one of the major indicative scenarios...such as trauma) or how to prevent it for that matter.  My risk with respect to another abruption is low somewhere around the 1% for a given pregnancy.  My risk for complications due to my vertical c-section incision is also small given my health history.

Rio asked me what I am going to do with this information.  The answer for now is ... Nothing.   After the delivery of N&J, I just felt such a loss of control - I hate when decision about me happens without my input ...  if you have not noticed by now - I like to be in control!   I needed to know that my options were not taken away from me but rather that I can make an active decision about my life.  That I have a choice and a voice ...

I am NOT broken :-)


..On a side note ~ I received the cutest picture of little N today.  He is growing some cute chunky rolls around his legs and arms.  Sweet ... thank you L!

A mother's intuition...

In college I was VERY science phobic.  So much that I kept on delaying one of my science requirements until my graduating semester...so there I was taking rock science (geology 101) as a senior along with all freshmans.  It was actually fun ... and compared to 400-level accounting classes it was a breeze.

Well things have changed!  I have changed - a lot!  ...and what is funny to me, is that my mother somehow pinpointed the change in my heart and the direction I am considering out of the blue during her recent visit.  It must be a mother's intuition because I have not talked to anyone about this other than Rio.

Anyway I digress, over the last few years, I have been trying to put a finger on exactly what has changed for me .. and it has taken some time to figure it out.  I knew there was something else I am meant to be doing.  Do not get me wrong, I actually love accounting but ... yes there is a but!   While I really like what I do, I do not feel completely fulfilled in my career choice and I feel an inner urge to have more of a human impact.

Over the years I have looked and researched different career choices (especially as Rio has kept going back to school) and I keep coming back to the same thing.  Honestly for a long time I disregarded my feelings.  Both because Rio was in school and it seemed that I could be fine and happy continue doing what I already am doing.  But also because I was getting a huge "feel good" human impact from being a surrogate .. but the thought keeps popping back into my head. 

Since Rio is now back to work, I have decided to throw the science phobia to the curve and take a leap of faith.  I am therefore studying basic science.  More specifically the basics of biology and chemistry in order to prepare for a placement test for an Anatomy & Physiology class.  Since I do not have a college level chemistry class and my bio class is way old, I need to pass a placement test in order to get into A&P.  In turn A&P is a requirement for me to get into the nursing program I am considering.

A few weeks ago I decided to put my "feelers" out for real and I applied to nursing school.  I really did it!  I can't believe that I actually did it but truly I am so excited about the possibility.  Currently the school is evaluating my transcripts and only time will tell what happens next.  For now there are a few obstacles in my way but I am ready to conquer ... first there is the matter if the placement test for the A&P class and secondly acceptance into the nursing program.

So wish me luck... I am leaving my heart wide open and trying to take it all in bit by bit ....  if it is meant to be it will... back to the books ... stay tuned :-)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fall pictures...

                                                        My sweet kiddos
                                              Magnus and Chompers
Hubby & Chompers
 My favorite girl
 Sebastian
 Olivia and Bella
 ...well at least we are all looking in the one direction



Cute as can be...

Follow-up...

Tomorrow I have an appointment with a MFM doctor (maternal fetal medicine) - Dr. E - at a clinic local to us here in Illinois.  After my early delivery back in May, I was given the advice to seek an objective view of my delivery record, pathology report (from the twins' placentas), and pregnancy history in the event I should ever contemplate another pregnancy.

And for the record, I am not even close to thinking about another pregnancy, but I do seek some closure for my own edification.  Some days I still struggle with the sudden loss of control I felt (and still feel) with regards to my pregnancy ending way too soon and while I hear the words of the OB's doing the delivery in the back of my head, I also still hear the deafening WHY???

So I decided to make an appointment with the MFM here and discuss my records.  If the case is that I need to completely close the "pregnancy, birth and baby" chapter in my life then I want to know that now.

I am so happy with the family that we have.  I love my children more than anything in this world and I often think fondly of the sweet babies I have been privileged to carry under my heart.  But it would be untruthful for me to say that the events surrounding N&J's early delivery and the loss of little J have not stirred thoughts in my heart.  That is not so say that I feel the need to add to our family in any way ... I am just sad that my last pregnancy ended the way it did.

Happy Birthday to a big boy...

Happy birthday to you ... happy birthday to you .... happy happy happy birthday dear Kieran ... happy birthday to you!!!

Wishing you a great 2-year old day :-)

I cannot believe that Miss V is almost 2.  Just another five days and one of the sweetest twiblings in the world will be 2.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Good luck...

Over the last year and a half I have been corresponding with a sweet sweet IM - A.  We were talking before I matched with L&J but due to timing issues our match did not move forward.   A and I have been staying in touch periodically and recently we have been chatting back and forth a bit.  I am so excited for them.  They have a potential surrogate they are meeting with very soon ~ a good match is so important for a successful journey.... sending them lots of good luck for a great match.  I hope they will be blessed with a little one to join their family soon.

Surrogacy has brought so many good things to my life .... sweet little babes ~ wonderful intended parents turned into great parents ~ and good friends in a supportive surrogate community online ...
some of these friends I have had the pleasure to meet in person and others that I look forward to meeting sometime in the future.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Uggh...short sale bump number 1...

So we have officially hit the first speed bump in the short sale process.  The BPO (broker price opinion) requested from the mortgage company came back $28K above the buyer's offer.  Alas the mortgage company is not even going to consider the offer and will counter the buyers at the BPO.  This stinks as I just do not think the buyers will come up that much.

It really sucks for us, as reality is that the next offer we may receive will likely be lower than the one we have now ... plus how long will it take to get another offer.  I will just say it again - selling a house right now SUCKS!!!!

We have a great agent working with us and she is putting some information together for our mortgage company as we speak.  I hope that some factual information may encourage the bank to reconsider the offer.  Facts are that a foreclosure sale recently sold down the street at $11K below our BPO; that a current foreclosure is pending on a home down the street at the same price as our current offer; and that another foreclosure is getting ready to hit the market two house down from ours.  She is also putting a "house showing with listing price" report together to send in - this will reflect that we have only had 5 showings since we hit the market in May, with the three most recent being after our most recent price reduction ~ obviously the BPO cannot be that accurate if we cannot generate any interest in the house at the BPO price (and for what it is worth our initial list price was close to the BPO amount).

I am hopeful that we can "flatten" out this speed bump and cruise along...keeping my fingers crossed!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Update on goal for 10/13...

Well I did not quite drop the 5 lbs I wanted ... but I am getting closer.  And I partially blame visitors!!!  Eating lots of good food with them is not so good for my diet!

I have not had a chance to run much as our schedules have been a bit crazy and all over the place.  However, I have established a daily work-out routine here at home for lifting weights and lots and lots and lots of stomach crunches in an effort to combat my tummy zone that Sebastian so affectionately refers to as my blubber!!!. 

I have also been getting on the trampoline daily.  It gives some cardio workout - not enough - but some and I am starting to see some pay off on my calves.  In order to see the results that I want though, I know I need to step up on the cardio workouts.  However, slow progress is still good and I will take it ... like a turtle knows "slow and steady wins the race." 

I am planning to sign up for two different 5K races coming up.  One is called the Turkey Trot and the other is a Christmas Jingle something.  Even if I only run part of them, I will be happy with just completing them and having two 5K's under my belt before the end of the year.


We are drowning...

...in all the fall foliage!!!  There are leaves everywhere.  I can spend the entire day raking and there will still be more.   This is the first time we have lived in a place with very mature landscaping and boy it takes time to keep up the yard. 

The upside ... it truly does look beautiful with the changing of the colors.  And my overarms are getting a good workout daily ... by the end of fall I should be sporting some nice guns :-)

Off to do some more raking ...

Almost 2...

Little Miss V is almost two ... I can't believe it!!!  Now off to do some shopping for fun little girly stuff :-)

Mr. N is also growing ~ he is five months old today....  Happy day to you and your family ~ grow little boy grow!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Circle of life...

As one gets older the circle and fragility of life becomes ever more present (...and sure with Rio working in health care and holding people's hearts in his hands daily does have an impact too).  The reality of mortality slowly creeps into ones thoughts ~ when I was young it was easy to think that people "would be there forever" but as I age that reality seems to retreat a bit too quickly for my liking.  The last five years have brought forth the beauty and gift of life with the birth of V and N&J as well as a few of my favorite nephews!  But it has also brought the sadness of many goodbyes ... specifically my father and more recently, and much to prematurely, little J.

Loss is hard.  It is one of the coldest realities of life...at some point it will end.  If anything, the passing of little J has reminded me not to take anything for granted.  I still find myself doing it though ~ it truly takes a commitment to live every day purposefully and let the "small stuff" go.  Since my birthday, I find myself thinking about J again very often.  I am not sure what it is but he is just in my thoughts a lot.  I wonder why he had was unfortunate to get NEC and I still wonder why a pregnancy that was so perfect could so drastically change without forewarning...it is a little heart ache that continually lingers. 

Having my own children and being a surrogate have really changed me in so many ways.  Being able to give something of myself to someone else has been so incredible...My heart has grown a few more heart strings and my love is extended to two beautiful little children and a sweet sweet angel.

The last few years I have felt a tug on my heart to do "more" .... I am not really sure yet what that "more" is, but I know that being a surrogate has really made me re-evaluate what I want to do with my life "when I grow up."  Turning 37 was really a catalyst and it has got my wheels turning ... what to do ~ what to do .. so many things so little time!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Visitors...

Woohoo my mom is coming in just two more days !!!  Yeah!

She is bringing her significant other with her, whom I have never met so this shall be interesting, as well as my nephew.  We are all so excited that they are coming.  I hope the weather will be great for enjoying all the beautiful colors of the fall.

Olivia already asked if mormor can cook some curry rice and chicken for her!

Craziness...

I am having a bit of a crazy time right now.  Getting settled takes forever and it seems that even though I bust my rear everyday there is just still more stuff to get done....but I am making headway! 

It has also been crazy busy with doctors and dentist appointments.  All the kids needed check-ups from an IL physician to have on file at school.  Magnus and Olivia also needed sports physicals.  Poor Olivia has several follow-ups - she both needed to see the podiatrist and the dermatologist.  We saw the derm guy today - ugh I did not like him one bit...bad bedside manners!!  Anyway her warts have now been frozen again (this is the 3rd time) and hopefully 3rd time is the charm.

The kids also need dental records on file at school ... and again the OR records do not work ... so off to find a new dentist.  I found one and we went right away because I knew little Mr. Sebastian had a cavity to be filled.  Before I made the appointment, I called them and told them which two teeth that needed work and they also got the full records from Dr. W's office back in Oregon.  Well after the check-up's the dentist says "they all look great with no problems" .. I was like ... "WHAT ...uhmm no"! 

How the heck could they miss not one but two cavities after they have been told they are there????  grrr...I even had to pull out Dr. W's x-ray and show them to her because their x-rays were not low enough to see it.  Man I am questioning that practice big time and truth be told off to look for a another new dentist!