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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Operation Organization

Katherine and Alison inspired me to jump on this opportunity to CLEAN UP MY HOUSE!

so I am jumping on the Operation Organization bandwagon. (a few days late, but still – ON.IT!)

Here’s our hot mess express of a house (I totally SPED through the house, and it was night time, so I didn’t get the outside. or Gianna’s room.  So, ya…here it is.

don’t judge me by the state of my house, okay!

I think I will do some combination of videos/pictures for before/after shots.  But it’s time to get this place in shape!

Intrigued? Want in? 

Here’s the scoop:

Just focus on each of these areas for a week and then post our accomplishments on Sundays. Here's the schedule:

  • March 4:
    • Kitchen
    • Dining Room
    • Living Room
  • March 11:
    • Play Room
    • Main Bathroom 
    • Linen Closet/Storage Closet
  • March 18
    • Master Bedroom (beginning – this will require some Ikea wonderfulness to complete)
    • Gianna’s Room   (again, beginning because there is a LOT to do here)
  • March 25
    • Laundry Room
    • Half bathroom
    • Storage Room
  • April 1:
    • Front of House
    • Backyard
    • Anything else you didn't have time to finish up in the previous weeks
  • April 8thish (since that’s easter!) [I added this week because I needed it]
    • Office

My house is set up a little different (but you just saw it so you know that) so what I am going to focus on is different than what is listed in Katherine’s post – so go with what works for you!  I’ll try to put some organizational tips – and you know I’ll be consulting my BFF Pinterest for some organizational inspiration.

Link up to Katherine (and tell me too so I can check out your house and organizational skillz) and get to it, friends!

andreasignature2

Wordless Wednesday: Flashback

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feb 2010

I forgot how small she once was.

Also, she STILL freaking loves that caterpillar toy!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Things that make you go “huh?”

I try to be sensitive in any comment I make, especially toward someone I don’t know well, because I have no idea what their life is like. Not always successful, I am sure, but I do try. So if I have ever said some kind of asshole-esque comment to you, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it like that!

You never know what a person is dealing with or experiencing in their life, and while most people don’t intend to be assholes, it sure can feel like it when the wrong comment comes at you on the right day.

a few examples related to our current struggles to add to our family that just generally make me want to scream:

“Just wait until you have two kids {add pretty much any comment that makes parenting seem harder here}” – one of the worst things someone who is struggling to have another child can hear.

“everyone’s pregnant. Must be something in the water” – Yes it must be. One of the worst thing ANYONE struggling to have a child can hear. also insights instant RAGE.

“you only have 1 kid, why do you have such a big car?” – well. because. why do you care?

“I got pregnant every time my husband looked at me” – good.for.you. I get a stabby every time I hear that comment.

“just relax, it’ll happen in time” – I.KNOW.THAT. But guess what? RELAXING is not always the answer.  Unless you don’t want me to talk to you anymore.  And, truthfully and oddly enough, I have been the most relaxed since we started going to see Dr. Wonderful.  There is something to say for the comfort of a plan, I think.

“have you tried it this way. on this day. this many times. etc.etc. etc.” – YES FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, OF COURSE WE HAVE. I feel like most people don’t want to know the mechanics of HOW we do the deed – but suffice it to say, we have done it that way and tried that technique. And here we are.

“when is Gianna going to be a big sister?” or any variation of this question = I DON’T FUCKING KNOW. Now go away. (admittedly this is probably one of the most innocent questions people ask, so I get that. It just sucks that I truly don’t know. And it hurts to talk about it)

I probably hear several of these each week. Sometimes they just roll right off the shoulders – other times they sit on my heart like a lead weight.  Like I said, I know comments like these aren’t meant to insight rage, but some days they just do. End of story.

What are things that people say to you that just make you want to smack your head or slap them across the face? Related or unrelated to TTC (I can do a whole other post on random things people say to me that make me go “REALLY??”)

andreasignature2

Monday, February 27, 2012

A Lesson on Gravity

We are pretty open with Gianna about things.

We allow her to come in to the bathroom with us, hang out while we are getting dressed etc.  This goes for my sisters/mom too, our family is like the opposite of private, so she might as well be exposed to it now.

This has posed some….interesting…. conversations, especially lately.

The mind of a nearly-3 year old is an interesting thing, that is for sure.

Does anyone see where this is going yet?

Gianna was at my mom’s this weekend while Mike and I were out of town and the following conversation happened:

G (said in a very serious, matter of fact way) – Gwama! I like your boobs.  Mommy has boobs.  Yours are fallin’ down.

Gwama – ya… I’m getting in the shower now.

My mom sent me this in a text message and I about peed my pants I was laughing so hard!

Oh the entertainment, it just never ends in these parts.

andreasignature2

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Bookworm

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The littlest person that lives in my house LOVES books.

She “reads” all the time – I think it’s fantastic.  Except when she gets stuck on some ridiculous library book called “where did daddy’s hair go” – that book is SO weird and we have to read it every night!

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She likes pretty much any book you give her. We have lots of Dr. Seuss and Disney books. A handful of Sandra Boyton books and a lot of other random books.

I want to get her some new books, maybe for her birthday or easter, so that means I need YOU to tell me about your favorite preschooler books.

Did I just type the word preschooler in reference to my daughter? That can’t be…..

Anyway – girly books are always fun – she has an awesome book called Camilla the Cupcake Fairy that has glittery pages (and the glitter stays ON the page!), that’s a huge hit!

But I just don’t have time to get lost in the bookstore – so I need your help to feed my little bookworm. Pretty please!

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andreasignature2

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Dear twin sister:

We have been through everything together.

You have been there for every event: big , small, silly, important, and everything in between.

You are always my biggest cheerleader, my strongest supporter and the person who I can literally tell anything to.  There to listen to me cry and be angry when life gets in the way of my dreams and to laugh with me when I need it most.

You are the most amazing aunt. Always playing with Gianna, making her laugh and loving her just as much as we do.  And spoiling her rotten.  And she loves you (and Uncle Joshie) just the same.

And I am looking forward to returning the favor in September.

While it may be difficult for me to talk about some days, know that I always want to listen and that I am infinitely happy for you.  And Gianna is very excited to have a baby cousin.

You are going to be a great mom – it is an adventure that pays back in the biggest way. That little life and the smile it brings to your face can dissipate any challenge that parenting brings and the lack of sleep will pale in comparison to just how much love you can feel for some one you just met.

So enjoy each day of that baby being inside, the days where you are the only one to know them and to feel them kick and wiggle.  Pamper yourself, sleep as much as you can (which, I know isn’t an issue for you!), enjoy all the little things about being pregnant (and it’s okay to complain about the annoying things too – no one likes to puke every day!).

I am praying that we’ll be able to experience at least part of this pregnancy together, and even if we can’t - remember I am just as excited to meet that little person as you are.  Maybe even more. I look forward to being an aunt and taking part in the spoiling that comes along with aunt-hood.

I love you and I love that itty bitty baby.

andreasignature2

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Dear little sister,

Before thanksgiving, this happened:

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I really still can’t wrap my brain around the idea that you are going to get married. (or that you are even old enough for that to happen!) But I am so thankful that God brought Jimmy in to your life (and ours) because if I had to pick someone for you – I don’t know if I could have picked someone better.

He is a hard worker, respectful, silly and loving.  He gets along with everyone and Gianna loves him – so that is awesome.

The adventure of your lives is just beginning and I am excited to see where it takes you – and to help plan the wedding, of course! 

My wish for you is to be happy always, to love each other always and to never go to bed angry.  That you explore life together – make ordinary days in to an adventure and ever lasting memories.  That whatever you wish and desire may be yours – sometimes those wishes will take work and time to accomplish, but sometimes they just take a little imagination and a big dream.

I am so proud of the woman you are and the woman you are becoming.

You will be a beautiful bride next April and I am sure I will never make it through the ceremony or my maid of honor speech without bawling. 

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Heck, I won’t make it through dress shopping, party planning or this blog without bawling – but they are happy tears, tears of pride and excitement. 

Krissy, you are not just my little sister, you are my best friend, a fabulous aunt, and someone I couldn’t live without and I am so glad you have met the man who you are going laugh and love through life with.

andreasignature2

Saturday, February 18, 2012

A Baby is Brewing: Tea Party Baby Shower

My BFF’s baby shower was a few weeks ago.  Her sister, myself and another friend threw this together – we used pinterest, naturally, and came up with some great d├ęcor ideas.

Dani's Shower 1

I used this tutorial for the tissue paper pom-poms, it was really easy – but time consuming.  We had lots of different teas and adorable tea pots/cups for everyone to use.

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We served finger foods and had a little “tea party” music for background noise.

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We had onesie decorating at each table, and they came out so cute!  And had tea bag favors with these cute labels:

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We also had baby shower bingo and baby wishes cards for everyone to fill out.

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Easy, not corny and somewhat enjoyable for all!

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There were so many great gifts – and Dani was glowing the whole time!  I seriously love this part of showers – because the person being “showered” just feels so special and loved, which is the whole point!!

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The shower was great. The people were great. And I was so glad that I was able to play such a big role in getting their world ready for a Miss L to join them in a few months!

andreasignature2

Friday, February 17, 2012

Friday Night Leftovers: Pedicure Edition

  • My mom called me the other day and said “I want you to call and schedule a hot stone pedicure on Thursday after work. I’ll keep Gianna”
  • UM, YES! (she got me a g/c for christmas that I had yet to be able to use)
  • It is always such a process picking out a color.  I can never decide. But I picked a fun shade of purple.
  • the girl doing my pedicure was really chatty.  I just wanted to sit in the quiet, look at pintrest on my phone and enjoy the massage.
  • I really don’t like small talk.
  • But she was nice enough, and complimented my glasses and my tattoo.
  • the hot stone massage on my feet = AHMAZING
  • I could have done without the national geographic special on ice worms that was on the big screen though – that was just…..weird…
  • There was a guy getting a pedicure next to me.
  • I totally meant to bring my own flip flops, but forgot them. so I had to wear those crappy foam flops.
  • to the car. In the rain.
  • But it was worth it since I always mess up my polish – but I didn’t this time.
  • After a really crazy few days at work and the emotional rollercoaster of the whole TTC process – it was just what I needed.
  • My mom rocks!

andreasignature2

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Valentines Date with Dr. Wonderful

Our follow-up with Dr. Wonderful was on Tuesday – it made for a very romantic start to valentine’s day.

As I expected, we talked for a few minutes and he said that “you appear to have ovarian function. your uterus looks normal.  Mike’s sperm are normal in shape, number and movement”  And that was about the end of that.

the genetic screenings came back normal – expected, but always good to hear.

So now what.

We talked about just timing intercourse with a trigger shot – but I didn’t really like that plan.  So Clomid is the next likely coarse of action.

Dr. Wonderful is a FAST talker – but I think I caught everything he was saying.

Next cycle I will call them, they call in the Clomid Rx and schedule a monitoring appointment and post-coital test (dreading that part) with a trigger shot & progesterone after ovulation.  In the meantime I am supposed to take 81mg aspirin, foltex and my regular prenatal. 

After we talked about that, he figured we might as well “take a peek” at my ovaries to see how things were going this cycle. He said I had a 14mm follicle so, and I quote “since it’s valentine’s day and I am sure you will see your husband tonight, I want you to have sex tonight. Again on Thursday, Saturday and if you have the energy, Monday”

I have never been given a prescription for sex before. First time for everything, huh?

The best part of the appointment was the fact that he asked if I was okay with everything.  Quite honestly, I didn’t think we would be here, so “okay” is relative, and he talks REALLY fast, almost too fast to think of any questions.

I am a little freaked out about the whole thing just because it’s new and not something I really am excited to do. I have an idea of what to expect with the medicine.  Are there any questions I should be asking when (if?) I call Dr. Wonderful at the beginning of the cycle? I like to be prepared.

So I guess, here we go!andreasignature2

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: Crafty

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YES! Time to do some crafts!

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Painted toesies for our painted valen-times

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Time to add the sparkles!

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And then some bonus finger painting

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Girlfriend is SERIOUS about her crafting

andreasignature2

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Working Mom Issues: a series

I have always considered myself a “working mom” – I worked from home when Gianna was 2 weeks old, worked full time through her 18 month birthday, started my own business right after that and was “at home” and started back to work full time when she was about 28 months old.

I am sure her earliest memories of me have to do with meetings or going to work or something related.

But ALL mom’s work – outside the home, inside the home, for pay or not, full-time, part-time or somewhere on either side of that. 

That being said – I think most mom’s are going to be able to relate to a lot of my “working mom issues” – and I find a lot of days that I think “ugh, working mom issue” over SOMETHING that is going on in my life.  And what do I do when pretty much any thought crosses my mind? I blog about it – I figured it would be fun to share and you know, misery loves company and all that jazz. Feel free to participate no matter where you are in the “working mom” spectrum. 

ANYWAYS!

Working Mom Issue no. 1: Sleepy head

I am not really a morning person.

On work days, I roll my sleepy butt out of bed after my 3rd alarm (no, seriously, I have 3 alarms – I have a bad habit about saying “screw you” to the snooze button) and try to get dressed.

But the thing is, I usually change 2 or 3 times before I decide on what I feel like wearing for the day – not so good of an idea when you are already up later than you should be.

So once I pick something to wear, I have to pick shoes (again, not always easy, too many to choose from!). And do my hair. And makeup.

Except I SUCK at doing hair and am really too lazy to put makeup on 6/7 days a week.  And usually am running so behind that even if I wanted to spend time on those things, there isn’t any more time to spend. Because I HAVE to make coffee!

So I leave the house in a cute outfit, accessorized with good shoes and jewelry hoping that those things distract people from the hot mess that is my hair and naked face.

Am I the only one who does this?  Who really HATES waking up and being rushed to get ready?

This isn’t something I had to worry about for 9 months while I was home and let me tell you how MUCH I miss being able to wake up slowly while enjoying a cup or three of coffee while snuggled in a blanket watching Mickey Mouse with Gianna.  (I got to enjoy this luxury yesterday morning, and it was so wonderful)

And before that, I could wear scrubs to work – so who cares what my hair looked like when I practically stayed in pj’s all day long?!

What’s your routine in the am?

Do you rush around like I do and leave for work with sleepers still in your eyes or are you much more put together? 

Talk to me about your morning routine issues – because I have a feeling these things don’t just apply to working moms.

And since Gianna has my slow-to-wake up tendencies, getting her up and out the door in time for preschool next year should be good and challenging!

andreasignature2

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Cute Toddler Saturday-ish

A few random pictures from the last month-ish

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First Snowman!

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helping out at Miss Dani’s baby shower

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silly G and her papa

 

More actual blog posts to come soon!

andreasignature2

Friday, February 10, 2012

Have a Heart - {Akron Children's Hospital Radiothon}

I remember the first time I heard WKDD's Radiothon that supports Akron Children's Hospital - I was BAWLING in the car because of all the sad, yet inspiring stories, that were being told. 

The next year, the cause hit a lot closer to home.  A friend had just lost her 18-month old son and I decided to be a part of the Radio-thon that year.  In 48 hours I was able to collect close to $500 to donate and it was really great.

Last year, my dear friend Jennepper was practically living at this hospital as her new little fighter was working her way through the first few months of life.  And we made a donation.

This year, Jen & Co. are still practiaclly living at the hospital with their 1 year old, totally amazing and nom-able little girl who continues to fight her way through life with a big smile and a few teeth now!

http://www.wkdd.com/pages/radiothon2012.htm

If  you have been looking for a way to give back - this is a GREAT way to do it. You can live ANYWHERE and call in to make a donation.  (You can even make a donation in Ainsley's name)

And TODAY! ALL DONATIONS WILL BE DOUBLED! This is such an awesome thing, this hospital provides the very best care imaginable to the kids (and families) that come through their doors - never turning anyone away.

If you want to see or hear the festivities, WKDD has a live feed on their website as well as broadcasts live through i heart radio.

Think about doing something awesome today and enriching the lives of all who come through that hospital's doors.

And spread the word - Radiothon ends tomorrow at 6pm!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Gianna-isms

Aunt Jacqui brings out the best in Gianna. Or the funniest. Either way, it’s adorable, see:

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Aunt Jacqui: Gianna, you’re being a drama queen

Gianna: NO Jacqui – Gwama is the QUEEN! I am the princess!!

clearly…..we should know better….

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sitting at the table with Aunt Jacqui eating dinner before I got home:

Gianna: Can we pray?

Aunt Jacqui: Sure….

Gianna: Baby Jesus, thank you for letting my mommy come home to me

Ok, if that doesn’t elicit an audible AWWW I don’t know what will!

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Getting some jammies out for the night (or maybe it was in the middle of the day, who knows, this girl LOVES her some jammies):

Aunt Jacqui: How about these little mermaid ones, Gianna?

Gianna: No, that’s Ariel.

Aunt Jacqui: Ya, she’s the little mermaid

Gianna: No….she’s just Ariel

DUH!

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Monday, February 6, 2012

Adulthood: a new appreciation

Growing up, I KNEW my mom worked hard to make sure her girls were happy, healthy and well cared for.

I also knew that working hard meant her working several jobs at once, cutting back when necessary and making sure that we never felt the financial struggles that were a part of life.

And then I got married young. And incurred a ridiculous amount of student loan debt. Some credit card debt. A few cars and now a house with financial struggles of my own.

All the while, I was so thankful for the work ethic and financial planning skills my mom made sure I had.  Things might be TIGHT sometimes, but I very rarely feel strapped for cash (sure, there could always be MORE for this or that, who doesn’t feel that way?), and for that I am thankful.  I know how to budget (and stick to it) and how to withhold my urge for retail therapy.  And I know how to work – the do whatever it takes – kind of work that sometimes, is just necessary and doesn’t really phase me.

But I also know the value of items and time.  I never understood why we couldn’t always get the “good” ice cream at the store  or what the big deal about buying “real” pop tarts was.  But I SO get that now.  I remember calling my mom one day maybe a year-ish ago and being SO excited at how much money I saved at the grocery store.  And then I knew I was an adult.  And she laughed at me, I am sure. But I get it now. She did so much for us, and one of the biggest lessons I learned was the value of items – she used to relate large purchases to hours worked to help us gain an appreciation of what it took to purchase/do things – that sticks with me to this day.  Budgeting is a pain in the ass sometimes, but it is a necessary pain in the ass. 

More than anything else, my mom taught me the value of time.  I value my time at home – my time spent NOT working – so so much.  I know that my mom worked 2 or 3 jobs pretty much until about two years ago – but I never FELT that stress.  When she was home, she was home.  She was with us – making us laugh, cooking us dinner, making snack trays, just being our mom.  We made games out of chores and we all pitched in so that we could have fun together.  My childhood may not have been full of fancy vacations and name brand jeans, but it was overflowing with laughter and love (and many temper tantrums over not having name brand jeans, until I learned the AWESOME of the sale racks!) and while I appreciated it then – now, it’s a whole new perspective and level of appreciation.

In the days of 24/7 connectivity – it is REALLY hard for me to just put the work away for a while. To not be checking emails, texting with people about work-related things and all of that.  But the other night, as I was hanging out with Gianna while Mike was at work, it hit me – she is going to remember this.  And while I want her to understand and appreciate how hard her mommy works, I don’t want her to FEEL that hard work.  I want her to know that it happens but know that when we are together – that is all that matters - that we will laugh and love and experience life together without work mixed in.  Because the work that I do, it is still going to be there after she is in bed but the requests for more books and “can I just lay on your shoulder while you read to me” aren’t going to last forever.  And, that time together is worth more to me than anything else in the whole world. 

I know that the need to continue to work hard is not going anywhere anytime soon – but I hope that as Gianna continues to grow up that she appreciates the hard work and remembers the laughter and the love.

Funny the appreciation and lessons of our childhood that adulthood brings out of us sometimes.

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

In the crazy that is our life and our schedules, weekend date nights are pretty non-existent.
So a Tuesday date night at the Cavs game (courtesy of my employer! Yay company suite!) was just what we needed!