Monday, May 19, 2014

what update??

Oh crud...here I said I was gonna update and then I didn't. It's not that I didn't want to, it's that I just, well, have too much to say....which I understand is a crap excuse for a blog writer. LOTS going on in my life. Some good, some awesome, some funny, some sad. Instead of continuing this blog, I'm going to start a new one. It's something I feel I need to do. Fresh start. I plan on keeping this blog open because my surrogate journey in carrying Jachym was such a massive part of my life (still is), but I won't be updating it anymore. Instead, I can't wait to fill you in on what's going on in my life now and in the future!! (and yes, a very large part of the new blog will be about JOURNEY NUMBER 2...hopefully kicking off SOON!!) So, stay tuned for my new blog!!! Will post a link here as soon as I have it ready. I miss you ALL terribly!!! Can't wait to reconnect with you!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Whoa.

Woah. Yes, I know I had the same response for myself when I logged into Blogger for the first time in months. If you're still following me, THANK YOU. I've missed you all terribly!! Why have I been MIA from blogger land for so long? Yeah, I'll get to that some day. Promise. Right now I'm not ready to talk about that. ...but I did want to tell you all that I've got lots of posts in my head and I promise to start blogging again VERY soon!! My first job is to finish up that European trip I took in July!! I can't wait to share all the wonderful photos with you, especially of that little man who I think about on a daily basis. He's growing so big!! So folks, stay tuned--European trip will continue, along with other stuff soon!!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

One Year Ago Today...

One year ago today, I was in a hospital.

One year ago today, I gave birth to a baby boy.

One year ago today, I helped create a family.

One year ago today, I fulfilled my dream of becoming a surrogate.

Happy First Birthday to my handsome little surro-guy!!! 

He went from this cutie moments after birth:


To this very handsome little man:



I am so thankful an honored to have lived the past year knowing I was able to help create a beautiful family.  Knowing that that little guy above is loved by so many people brings a feeling to my heart that in unexplainable.

Relive the birth story here, if you'd like!

Jáchym--Všechno nejlepší k narozeninám! 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Europe...Day 1

July 7, 2013
In flight

We flew from Milwaukee to JFK (New York) on a very uneventful flight, only a couple hours.  Thanks to the bloody mary's at the airport at MKE, our vacation started off great!

We arrived at JFK airport with about 5 hours to spare before our flight left for Prague.

Hmmm....in New York...and 5 hours before our next flight...what does one do??

Go to New York City, of course!!!

So, we stepped outside the terminal and happened upon a man wearing bright yellow with a checkered pattern vest...a taxi driver right?  Well, kinda...I'll get to that in a sec.


He looks like a taxi driver, no??
We negotiated with "The Yes Man" (I don't think we ever got his real name, but the "Yes" tattoo on his arm denoted his surname) and before we knew it, we hopped into his SUV with another driver sound asleep in the front and headed to the city.

The self-proclaimed "King of the Swoop" (think of swooping as veering out of traffic, passing a car or two on the shoulder and cutting someone off to get back onto the road) made good time and before we knew it, we were looking out the windows at Times Square.

I was seriously just thankful to be alive at that point.

Now, all the way to the city, Jesse kept giving me "the eye". My first thought was, "oh, he's telling me he loves me before we enter an alley and find our death by taxi-driver". What he was trying to tell me was that "The Yes Man" wasn't legit. Completely illegal, operating what I thought was a real taxi-service in New York City.  Yeah, I was wrong.


Lovely.

My inner Wisconsin small town girl mind took over and needless to say, I was slightly frightened.

...but he got us to the city just fine--and the whole way there we had interesting conversation with him and learned all about his endeavours, true or not.  He was kind of a neat chap.

And Al was still sleeping in the front seat.

Double parked, "The Yes Man", hubby and I got out and ordered some decent street grub at a somewhat famous food cart (I guess it's one that has had the same spot for 25+ years).  Nothing like eating a gyro and falafal in a double parked taxi, just sayin'...



After lunch, we headed back to the airport.

And got there safely.

Whew.

After standing outside and chatting with "The Yes Man" for a bit before we re-entered the terminal, I glanced down at his name tag.  Still not quite getting his real name, I learned his very official taxi badge read that he was a "Food Service Manager".  Very official, no?

We found our gate and boarded the 7-hour Delta flight to Prague!



Up Next...Day 2.  Prague.  And the surro-family.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Foto Friday!

Just wanted to share some pics of some of my favorite little people:

My kiddos, growing up way too fast:
Elliot, Emerson & London

And check out this little man!  Ack!  He's so big!!!




Wednesday, June 12, 2013

We are amongst fame, people!

No, I'm not famous...

...but someone that I may have had a baby for is...

(15 Second Mark)




No, I didn't understand any of it, either.
But here's a screen shot of the best part:

See that doctor??  Yup, that's Honza (one of Jachym's daddies)!! 
Cool, eh?

Oh, and PS...Jesse and I get to see all the boys in less than a month!!!! 

More blog posts soon-miss ya'll!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

5K. Complete.

I’m not sure that I can flat out say “I’m a runner” …yet…
…but I am happy to tell you that I did, in fact, “run a 5K”.

No really, I did.

I ran it.

Mostly.

My friend, Cole, and I have been talking about doing a 5K for a few months. When I say “doing” my thought was always just walking the thing. Never could I possibly run 3.106 miles. Ever.

A 5K opportunity just happened to come up near her home in Kentucky. She called me and asked "want to do a 5K with me?".

I said okay.

And then regretted my answer immediately.

I mean, she was actually talking about running it. Yikes! I thought she was nuts.

And then I thought—No, I can do this. WE can do this.

We talked about goals and decided on 2 of them:

1. To finish without keeling over.
2. To finish in under 45 minutes.

Then I got an e-mail from the Flying Pig Marathon Association. It was my registration. It was my race number. It was reality that I was going to have to do this.



How on earth was I going to run 3 miles? The most I had ever run at a time was 1 mile—and my best time was just a smidge under 12 minutes. Notsogreat. To run a 5K in less than 45 minutes would mean I would have to average less than 14:48 per mile. For one mile that might be a walk run in the park, for 3 miles that might be worse than, oh, I don’t know, running more than 1 mile??

The day of the race arrived. I donned my spandex running pants (the last time I wore spandex in public was at a 6th grade dance in 1991…seriously) and pinned my race number to my shirt. I actually could have passed for a real runner. But I didn’t feel like one…I actually felt like a poser. I wasn’t a runner. I don’t run.



The countdown to the start of the race commenced and as soon as we heard “One!” we took off.

And we ran.

And ran.

(okay, more like jogged, but you get my drift...)

Seriously, we ran nearly the entire thing. We walked only for a couple minutes.

And we finished it!!  We finished in 43:10.




Is that great? For us, yes. For a runner—probably not.  But our goals were met. And then some.  And we had a great time doing it!


Thanks for the great time, Cole (and your hospitality)!!  It's always a good time when I'm hanging out with good people.

As for the 5K...will we do another???....we'll see!!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Cursillo

Heads up kids, this is about religion. Kinda.  Maybe not really.  But it’s also about an experience I recently had. I’d love for you to sit back and read. Maybe you can relate. Maybe not. But I’d certainly enjoy some company in this little anecdote.

I would never consider myself a religious person. Sure, I’d go to church…as often (okay, maybe not) as I could.

But I never really listened. I never heard a message. I never had a relationship with God.

I’d go because I wanted to be able to say “I went to church”. I also wanted to keep my dad happy. He was so into church, so into God…and I wanted to make sure he was content with his daughter’s religious doings.

A few years ago, my father casually mentioned a word to me and gave me a 30 second commercial about it. The word was Cursillo. Much like many things my dad talked about when it related to church or religion, I listened for about a millisecond, came up with some sort of answer or excuse on why that just wasn’t for me and turned the conversation to the weather.

And then he wouldn’t bring it up again for a few months.

For years, this was a never-ending cycle with my father. Cursillo. “Jesse, I really think you’d like it”. “Sure, dad—but I’ve got so much going on with work, with my mom—it’s just not good timing”.

I still had no clue what Cursillo was. But I was totally against it.

I did this just now—never before did I even look up the definition of this word:
What is Cursillo?? The cursillo focuses on showing Christian lay people how to become effective Christian leaders over the course of a 3-day weekend. Definition: Short course of Christianity.

As you may know, my husband and I had some “troubles” last year. After a rocky moment or three, we talked, we figured everything out and are happier than we have ever been.

And in early 2013, dad asked us both about Cursillo.

“Ugh, dad”…I thought. “Not again”.

But Jesse had a different outlook. “Why don’t we go?” he said.

Hmmm….I actually never really thought of going. Ever. And now my husband—the pretty non-religious chap I married is suggesting it? Hmmmm…..

So we talked about it, figured out the logistics and if we could get away for a weekend and sat my dad and step-mother down and told them we were going to Cursillo.

And I couldn’t wipe the smile off their faces.

The decision to go was made in January. Cursillo was in April. We had plenty of time to research it, to figure out what this thing was, to come up with a reason to not go….

But the time came. We filled out our applications. We wrote a check.

We were going.

We understood that my dad and step-mom would be our “sponsors”. We had no clue what that meant, other than that my dad would be driving us to the place they would hold Cursillo (a camp in Waupaca, WI) on Thursday afternoon and pick us up on Sunday afternoon.

Besides a “packing list” for the weekend, we received nothing about Cursillo. No agenda. No list of who would be there. We were blind going into it.

So, Thursday afternoon rolled around. Jesse and I packed our bags and within hours we were chauffeured (via mini-van) to Spencer Lake Christian Camp with my father, 2 hours away from home.

He dropped us off and we walked through double doors headed into the unknown.

The very unknown.

I am not going to go through the details on what we actually did at Cursillo. It’s not that I don’t want to talk about it….I do. But I can’t do it justice. There’s only so much that can go into words on a computer screen. I can’t relay what I felt. I can’t relay what I experienced. Not on paper, not in person.

There were some down times. I will admit that. There were times I wanted to leave. Jesse too.

But we stuck through it.

And on Saturday, I had a life change. Jesse will tell you he did too.

I can’t describe it. I can’t explain it. Just know that as I type this and think about it, I get tears in my eyes. Good tears.

Today as I type this, it’s the Thursday after Cursillo.

And I feel amazing.

My life is just as it was before this past weekend. I still sell vision insurance, I still love pasta and wine, my feet still hurt in certain shoes and I still need to go on a diet.

But I’m different.

I’m different because of Cursillo. I’m different because Christ knocked on the door to my heart and I let him in.  

I see things differently. I think about things differently.

I am better. And very, very happy.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Half Celebration

Do you celebrate half's?  Half anniversaries, half birthdays, perhaps?

Yeah, we don't either.

Until this year.

A couple weeks ago I was pampering myself a bit at my favorite salon when I got a text message from my husband that read "Let me know when you're 2 minutes from home".

So, when I was about 2 minutes from home, I called him and I was instructed to pull down the driveway, but not to pull in my normal spot...I was told to stop before that and he would then direct me to what my next step was.

So, I did as I was told, with one eyebrow raised the entire time.

He greeted me at my car, instructed me to close my eyes, grabbed my hand and led me to the house.

Yes, I was freaked out.  I had NO clue what he was doing.  Did he paint a wall some funky color?  Did he invite people over for dinner?  Did he make dinner?

None of the above.

I walked into my house, opened my eyes and heard "Happy Half Birthday, Mom!!!"

We were celebrating my half birthday.  A day I would have never even thought twice of.

And it was pretty special.


I got some cards... (A present, too!!)

There were balloons...

Party Favors...

Even half a cake!!

The kids, Jesse and I had a nice time celebrating something we wouldn't normally.  My husband can be quirky and goofy, but this kind of stuff is pretty awesome to me. 

Now I have to think of a "half" celebration I can spring on him!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

8-Month Photo of one cute kid...

Just had a brief moment for a quick drive-by blog post...I HAD to share this photo.

I am one very proud surro mama! 

Happy (a little over) 8 Months, Jachym!!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Be in Peace, MC

There's a blog that I follow...one that has inspired me, one that has put many a smile on my face and one that has made me cry.

Today, Hayden (aka "Master Cheeks") passed away.
You can see the post here.

If you're the praying type, please send a quick prayer to Bernadette and her family.

“Each new life, no matter how brief, forever changes the world.”




Saturday, March 2, 2013

Disconnected

I'm feeling quite disconnected lately.  From everything.

I barely text my friends, I certainly don't call them.  I've been MIA from Facebook for days on end and the blogs I follow have been updated 1800 times without me reading one thing...and I feel so lost...

I mean, I'm busy.  Really really busy.  I've been working on a project for work and put in no less than 60 hours/week...plus I have a family to take care of, plus I have a mom in a nursing home to visit....but are excuses even okay here?

Okay, sorry--just needed to vent.  My friends, close and far, I love you.  Please know that.  My blog followers, thanks for hanging around.  I have lots to say, just no time to say it right now. 

Jesse hasn't left the building--I'm just hanging out in the stairwell right now. 

...but I'll be coming back soon. 

XO

Thursday, February 21, 2013

I get 70 miles to the gallon on this hog.

The day:  January 4, 2013
The time:  sometime in the afternoon

"I have an "appointment" tomorrow afternoon.  Will that work with your schedule?" said the man I married.  "Uh, sure" I said.  "What kind of appointment?".  "Nevermind that" he said with a smirk.

My eyebrows raised.  He said nothing more.

Something was up.

The day: February 14, 2013

The time: 5:49 am

I awoke to a familiar voice "Hun, get up. It's Valentine's Day". When I was able to open my eyes and focus, I saw my husband staring at me with a huge smile on his face.

He grabbed my hand and I looked down the stairs leading to the main level of our house and saw this:



I walked oh so carefully down my path of hearts, walked into the room below and saw this:


 

Yes, my friends...it is true and oh so awesome.  I am now the proud owner of a Honda Cosmopolitan Scooter. 

Oh yes, I took it for a spin immediatly.  Nevermind it was only 4 degrees outside, I needed to try that puppy out.  And she's awesome.

I'm hittin' the wind once the weather turns at least a teensy bit warmer.

I may have taken it out last night to pick up some ice cream at the local supermarket.  Froze my boobies off.

Best Valentine's Day present ever.  My husband may have just clinched the husband of the year award.

From this point forward, call me Lloyd.


I get 70 miles to the gallon on this hog.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Happy.

I'm happy. 
I'm very happy.

....for lots of reasons....
  • I have a great husband.  Yes, we've had our moments as a married couple, but those moments have truly made our marriage stronger.  And better.  And I couldn't be happier.
  • My kids kick ass.  They really do.  They're good kids.  They make me laugh.  They're cute.  And I love them more than words could ever express.
  • I have a home that I love.  We're doing some cosmetic changes to it right now to make it even more lovable (will post pics soon--yes, I picked a new kitchen color!!).  My house is old.  My house is sometimes a pain in the ass.  But I love it and it makes me happy to be there.
  • Adam Levine is gracing my TV right now.  That makes me REALLY happy.
  • I have great job.  I work for a great company and I have an awesome boss.  I am very passionate about my work and I have a feeling the next couple years are going to be pretty amazing regarding my career.
  • I have pretty awesome friends.  They all make me happy.  Though I don't see a lot of them a whole lot (due to geographical challenges), I hope they all know that I think about them often.  And when I think about them, I smile. 
  • There's not a day that goes by that I don't think about the family I helped create.  All of them (Tomas, Honza and baby Jachym) put a smile on my face every time I think about them.  They make me happy.  PS-Project Sibling 2014 may be in the talks.  Just sayin'....
I have so much to be happy about and so much to be thankful for.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Friday Foto Fun

For your viewing pleasure...


I am one proud surro-mama!! 

Happy Friday!!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

6 Months!

Holy schnikes!  The little man I gave birth to is 6 MONTH'S OLD already!!!

That's half a year. 

That's 182.5 days.

That's insane!!

All is well in the land O'Jachym.  He's doing great!  I understand the little guy is eatin' up his veggies...but much prefers his milk. (don't we all...)

And most importantly...


Yeah, still uber cute, eh??

As for me, well I'm FANTASTIC.  No really, I'm awesome.  Family is good, job is good, life is good.  I'm happy.  I'm very happy.

More for you soon!!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Opinions Needed--Paint Colors!

Things are a-changin' at the Jesse X2 home...

We're bored.  We need a change.  A revamp.

As much as I'd like to just buy a new house or even build something nice and new and pretty, I only have like $8 dollars to spend, so we're just going to change up our current home a bit.

You know...new trim, new paint, new carpet...stuff like that.

I've pretty much decided on the paint for the living room, sitting room and bathroom (I'll run it past ya'll just to make sure I'm on the right path), but I'm struggling with a room big time that I need your help with.

The kitchen.

The hub of my existence.

Here's the history...

We bought our home in July of 2004.  It was built in 1890 and the previous owners were psychotic.  No really, they were.  And they were gross.  Literally, I have photos from our first walk-through of pantyhose laying on the floor and marks in the floor on what we assumed to be containers that held pot-plants that were being grown in one of the bedrooms.

Seriously.

But we looked past all that and knew we could it make what we wanted to.

That first year we owned it (and lived in it), we pretty much gutted the entirety and re-did it.  New floors, new walls, new fixtures--everything.

And about half way into the remodel, I got pregnant.

Time to bust-a-move.

I remember sitting on the living room floor, 8 months pregnant, putting together our kitchen cabinets.  Yeah, that was fun.

Anyway, here's what the kitchen looks like now (forgive the stuff on the counters...this was taken a long time ago and I've since developed a sense of "I don't want any crap on my counters")...



See the blue walls?  That's pretty much the main paint in the entire kitchen.  The red is an accent wall (to your left) and the red is no longer there on your right (it's just pine now).

The ceilings are very high and pine (look right above the windows--the entire ceiling above the fan is the same thing).

Appliances are all white (for now...possibility of stainless in the future) and perimeter counter top is Formica (with hints of blue in it).  The island butcher block will be replaced with dark granite.  All trim work will be white.

As much as I'd like new cabinets, it's not going to happen right now.  So, the biggest change we can make is paint... 

...this is where I need your help.

We need something that will go with the pine cabinets, pine ceiling and white trim.  I'm not a fan of yellow and we want to stay clear of blue.  We would like to have the "accent" wall a different color or shade, if possible.

Alright friends.  HELP!!  Thoughts?  Ideas? 

Prize to the person with the best idea!

Monday, December 31, 2012

This post brought to you by Merlot...

It's a quiet night at home...it's New Years Eve and all is good in the world.  Elliot is playing with his new Christmas present from Santa (Nintendo 3DS), Emerson and London are watching a Disney movie and I'm enjoying a nice glass of red wine.  Jesse has some party buses out tonight, so I won't be totally relaxed until he and the other drivers get home safely..but the wine is helping me relax just a little bit.

And true to how things are in my family, London just farted and no one can stop laughing.  Including me.

This is my life.  And I'm totally okay with it.

So 2012 was pretty great.  I mean, I gave birth to the cutest little guy and made daddies out of two of the coolest guys I've ever met.  I went through a lot both physically and emotionally and I wouldn't take any of it back for anything.  It was the most amazing experience I've ever had and for that, 2012 will forever be pretty frickin' awesome.

The past few months have been, uh, weird...but everything is fine.  Everything wasn't fine for a period of time, but it's fine now and that's what matters.  What happened over the past few months is not worth sharing over the interwebs of the world, but know that now, I'm in a place that is good.  I'm in a place that is very good.  I'm happy.  It took some soul searching to get here, but when I arrived, I knew it was where I wanted, needed and was supposed to be. 

I have a few things on the docket in 2013 that I'm quite excited about.  Jesse and I have purchased tickets to see Brian Regan in March...front row.  I'm totally pumped because I'm secretly in love with Brian (ssshhhh...don't tell my husband).  In May, I'll be taking a little jaunt to Kentucky to visit Cole--the plan is to run a 5K while I'm there, but that may just turn into eating at a buffet for 3 hours instead.  I'm kidding.  Maybe.  I'm sure at some point I'll make my way back to Colorado to cause some trouble with my ling lost, Jeni.  Finally, in July, the hubster and I will be going to Prague to visit the guys and Jachym!  We're also going to hit up Italy for a bit.  Yeah, I'm just slightly excited about it.  Man, I think about this trip and I get all giddy.  Eek!  It will be right before Jachym turns one--how flippin cool, eh?? 

2013 will also likely bring some pretty heavy discussions with my family about the possibility of doing another surrogacy journey...another journey is always on my mind and it's something I know I really want to do, however I want to let a little more time pass before I move forward with it.  I'd like to spend time with my own family and focus on them for a bit.  I have these exciting things planned (trips) for this year and I want to be able to enjoy every second of them--and there's no way I'd be able to cause trouble in KY and CO or drink copious amounts of red wine while in Italy if I were on meds or preggo...I also want to get into better shape physically so when I am ready to make a final decision on another journey, I can jump into things pretty quickly and be totally ready.

And because I know everyone loves a photo, here are some for your viewing pleasure:

My beautiful girls in their PJ's, all ready for Santa to come!

The newest member of the Cheesehead Limousine driving team!
The cutest little surro guy, ever!

2012, you were awesome.

2013, I am so looking forward to what you have to offer.

Though my blog posts have been few and far between lately, please know that I still treasure you all--those that read this blog, those that write other blogs.  I'm gonna do my best to keep ya'll appraised of my life and its' happenings.  Happy New Year, everyone!! 

Sunday, December 9, 2012

A Visitor!

On Tuesday, I welcomed a very awesome visitor to my home.

No, Santa didn't come early. 
This visitor was way cooler.

Can you guess?  Can you??

It was Tomas!!  (no baby Jachym or Honza, just daddy T)

I knew he was coming for a visit, but kept it on the DL...mainly because I wanted it to be a surprise for Elliot.  You see, Elliot developed quite a bond with Tomas and Honza while there were here.  Like me, he was pretty upset when they left.  So, this kind of surprise was something that I knew would be very awesome for my first born.

Tomas and I went to Elliot's school to surprise him in his class. It was pretty dang cool--the class was in story time and the teacher pointed out someone was at the door.  When the kids turned around, Elliot's eyes got huge and he got up and ran to Tomas and gave him a big hug.  I might have shed a tear.  I think Elliot did too.

The teacher invited us into the class and Tomas was able to tell the kids where he was from:




The kids all thought Tomas was pretty cool, especially since he flew in an airplane (for a really long time) to get to us!

We stole Elliot out of class, grabbed Emerson (who was also quite happy to see Tomas...though we did interrupt snack time for her) and went home so we could all visit.

After hanging out a bit, I took my "date" to the movies (Breaking Dawn 2...which was AWESOME if you haven't seen it yet) and we grabbed a bite to eat at one of the guys' favorite places to eat while they were here in July.  It was so nice to relax and catch up with one of my 3 favorite people from across the ocean. 

Tomas, thank you for visiting!!  We miss you already and can't wait to see you again!!  And special thanks for the presents!!

(especially the beer)


On a side note, I know I've been neglecting my blog lately.  There's lots going on in my life and I'll hook you all up with some updates, photos and cool s#*t soon...I promise.  I hope you are all doing well. I miss you.

On another side note, Jacob was extra hot in that last movie.  Just sayin'.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

4 Months Old!

I was one lucky girl this morning--I had the pleasure of Skyping with my favorite Czech people!!

...and I was reminded that today is little Jachym's 4th month birthday!

All is well in their world.  They tell me Jachym is a very good baby--I even got to "talk" to him today!!  It seemed he recognized my voice, which is pretty dang cool.

Here's the little guy either trying to eat his hand or the ribbon on the bear--


Such a cutie!!  Happy 4-months, little guy!!  (or should I say "big" guy...he's in 6-9 month clothing already!)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Transfersary

Exactly one year ago today, a little procedure happened that forever changed the lives of 2 men...

Exactly one year ago today, a beautiful little embryo was implanted in my uterus...

Exactly one year ago today, I became pregnant...

Exactly one year ago today, I became a surrogate...

...and this little guy was created....


Here is a little walk down memory lane about that awesome day.

Happy One Year Transfer'sary to us!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Moo.

Yesterday, FedEx came to my house and picked up approximately 2,200 ounces of frozen breast milk.

It was delivered to a preemie milk bank.

Even if what I've done will help just one baby, I am happy.

But I think that much milk will help way more than that.

And that makes me really really happy.

And just for kicks, here's the equivalent:

2,200 ounces =
     65.06 Liters
     4,400 Tablespoons
     17.18 Gallons
     68.75 Quarts
     275 Cups
     137.5 Pints
     13,200 Teaspoons

Yowsa.

I am still pumping, but I've started to cut back.  I want to continue producing until at least November 20th.  At that point, I'll have met my goal and will likely stop...slowly.

As much as I'd like to continue, it does take a lot of time.  I've stuck through the every 3 hours pump since Jachym was born.

And the idea of being able to sleep through the night sounds lovely.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veterans...I Thank You Today and Every Day


Happy Veteran's Day to you all.

Whether you do so in person, via text or e-mail or simply in a thought, please take the time to thank a veteran today.

I will be sure to say a special Thank You to this man, my father:



Thank you, Dad.  Now and Always.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Nursing Home Olympics

My mom's nursing home had an awards ceremony for a recent resident Olympic event.

And my mom won an award:


Here's a close-up of said award:



I'm totally proud of my mama.  This award is more than appropriate.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Gone

This was the house I grew up in:



And here it is today:


Gone.
Razed.
Demo'd to make a parking lot.

I knew it was coming, I did. 

But I wasn't prepared enough.

As I drove past the ruins this morning, my heart sank.  My heart cried.  I cried.  I sobbed.

I have so many memories of my house.  MY house. 

I have photos of my first day home from the hospital after I was born...in that house.

I have photos of my first day of kindergarten...in that house.

I have photos from the night before my wedding...in that house.

I have photos of years worth of Christmas Eve celebrations...in that house.

I have photos of my mom and I...in that house.

And now there's nothing. 

Nothing left...
...but a lonely bird house...

Which I now have.

It's all I have.  They never called me.  They said they would.  They said they would let me in one last time.

But they didn't.

So now all I have left is the memories.  The memories of my house...

...which is gone forever.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Killer Boots, Man.


"Pullover!"

"No, it's a cardigan, but thanks for noticing."

"Yeah, killer boots, man!"










The above photo was taken by my husband last week.

He was in the passenger seat.

The driver?  Me.

See those blue lights in the mirror?  There were red lights too.

You're welcome, State of Massachusettes, for the $200 check, courtesy of my lead foot.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

3 Months!

Uh yeah...you read that right. 

3 Months Old.  Baby Jáchym is 3 months old today.

I can't believe it either.

I hear he's just an awesome baby! Tomas and Honza are totally enjoying fatherhood, which makes me one happy girl.  There's no better feeling in the world to know that you had a part in making someone truly happy.

So, how am I doing 3-months post-partum?  Pretty good.  The emotions are no longer all over the place.  I'm back into my groove of working, being a mom/wife and living my "normal" life...but I can't deny that I don't think about the guys/baby every day.  They cross my mind a lot, and when I think about them, I smile.  I'm just so happy to have been a part of something so awesome.

Yup, I'm still a milk machine--pumping 6 times/day!  The milk bank I'm donating to has a 90 day "waiting period" (because I had the Rhogam shot in the hospital) so I'll get my clearance sometime this week.  They just need to do a blood test to make sure all is good.  Once they get the "all clear", I'll ship them all the milk I've pumped to this point.  Yes, I've had to store it all...freezer space has become quite limited.  I'm happy (and quite proud) to say that as of this very moment I have 1,857 ounces (14.5 gallons) of breast milk in my chest freezer (those on the metric system-that's just shy of 55 liters).  My plan is to continue pumping for at least a few more weeks, if not a few more months. 

Okay, okay--onto the good stuff--here is the little guy (who's now a big guy)!

Seriously.  Adorable.

And for comparison's sake...(3 days old):

Though I had nothing to do with his cuteness, I'm still a VERY proud surro mama!

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Tooth Saga Continues...

Many of you have been inquiring on how the tooth saga turned out.


For those that have no clue what I'm talking about...
Bungee Cord Incident Part 1
Bungee Cord Incident Part 2

Sadly, the saga isn't over.
Yet.

The last I left you, I was headed in to get a beautiful implant….a little procedure that would take approximately 1 hour and cost me over $4000. Okay, it wasn’t really going to be $4000 out of my pocket—they were willing to bill it to insurance under 2 different procedures in 2 different calendar years…so my out of pocket would be about $2000.

Still, that's craptastic amount of funds that I'd rather spend on a new handbag.  Or seven.

What I wasn’t prepared for was the implant not actually happening.

Without getting into too many details that will make you squirm in your seat, let’s just say after lots of “digging around “ in my tooth area, the dentist came to the realization that there was not enough bone in the correct area to place the implant. So, he “sewed” me back up (literally…I think I got about 7 stitches), put my poor little dead tooth back in, cemented it yet again and said we needed to move on to plan B.

Well, wait a second…plan A could possibly still work—if the bone graft he put in did what it needed to do in about 8-9 months’ time. Then *maybe* they could do the implant at that point. I was given about a 30% chance of that working.

Gee, doc. Those are some fantastic odds.

Plan B. Bridge. Grinding down the teeth on either side of trouble tooth and put a 3-tooth bridge in. It would look real, I could get it done in 2 visits and it would be cheaper than the implant.

Fine. Let’s just do that and get this damn thing over with. So, I scheduled the bridge for September 27th. Before I walked out of the dentists’ office, I asked the office chick (I can call her that because she’s kind of on my shit list) to e-mail me the procedure costs so I could make sure I knew what I was getting into.

No e-mail.  (perhaps she didn't understand me due to the copious amounts of Novocain still evident in my mouth)

I did, however, leave with a prescription for "Extra Strength" Vicodin.

Fast-forward to September 27th….the day of the implant. I’m on my way to the dentists’ office and I see I have a voicemail…from the “office chick”. The voicemail says they’re looking forward to seeing me (in 10 minutes) and oh, I have a balance due of $5300 (after insurance). I can either cut them a check or set up a payment plan.

Uh, negative ghost rider. Not happenin’.

So, I walk into the office and a way too-friendly woman asks me how my day is going. I sternly reply “well, it was lovely until I just listened to my voicemail. I need to speak to (the chick).”

The chick brings me back to her desk and explains the costs. She kept saying “I’m sorry” and “I know this is tough to take”.

Ya think?

Long story short (too late, Jesse) I walked out of the dentists’ office with tears in my eyes…without my pretty new bridge.

Even longer story short, I ended up getting a quick appointment with a dentist that my husband has done business with for years (he's a limo customer). He did a quick consult with me and I will now be moving forward with his office doing the bridge. The cost differential is significant and he’s going to do a very good chunk as a direct trade with Jesse…so basically, my husband’s limo is paying for a nice portion of my teeth.

(one of the perks of being married to someone that owns a business, who’s a big fan of barter)

As I was getting the consult with dentist #2, dentist #1 leaves me a voicemail and says the cost estimator they gave to me was incorrect. Said it was going to be $2000 cheaper than what they said.

Someone tell me how that mistake is made?? I have a good judge of people. Of business. Something’s not right here. You don’t just mess up on something like that. Oops?  Really?

Sorry dentist #1.  You effed up.  And lost my business.

For various reasons, I have to wait until after the calendar changes to get the bridge. Yikes. So, my poor little tooth that has been hanging on for dear life now has to be a total rockstar and hang on 3 more months. That’s all I need. 3 more months.

So, I’m right back to where I started. The tooth that was knocked out 11 years ago is back in, cemented to his buddies on either side. I’m out some significant funds because of the “extraction”, but alas, I have a positive outlook and know that everything will be fine.

In 3 more months.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Da Funk.

So I've narrowed down this little funk that I'm in. 

Sadly, it's about 5 different things. 

And here's one of those things...

If you're a follower of my blog, you may remember a couple posts I did about my childhood home.  104 West Main St.  Here are the links to those posts:

It's MY House
My House...It's a Steal

And if you don't want to read those, that's totally cool.  In a nutshell, my mom had a stroke 5 years ago, my stepdad was an asshat and foreclosed on the house they lived in and it was put up for sale.

About a month ago, I noticed the for sale sign was gone. 

(Yes, I drive past the house on a semi-frequent basis)

A few weeks ago, I heard a rumor that a local cheese factory had purchased the house.  You see, this cheese factory was right next door to the house.  Well, not right next door...a parking lot separated them. 

Can you see where this is going?

Yes, my fear was that the factory purchased the house to level it and make a larger parking lot. 

Ugh.

This thought has been lingering in my head for a few weeks...and I got some pretty concrete answers on it this past week:



raze   
verb (used with object), razed, raz·ing.
1. to tear down; demolish; level to the ground


My biggest fear has come true.  They're tearing it down.  

My childhood home will be gone.

Completely.  Gone.

I'm sad.  I'm pissed.  I'm upset.  I want to cry.

I can't do anything about this.

And here's the creepy part..Sartori (the cheese company) is actually one of my clients.  Well, the HR person contacted me the other day for some insurance "stuff" she needed (a client that I rarely ever hear from, mind you).  During our conversation, I decided to ask about the house. She only knew that they had purchased it and were planning on tearing it down in the near future.  
I needed to do it...I asked if I could get into the house once more before the dozers get there.   

I want to see it one last time. 
And I want to take something.

Anything.  

Something that I can say "This came from my house, the house I spent the first 18 years of my life in".  

She said she'd talk to the powers that be and let me know.   
We haven't talked yet, but I'm hoping to hear from her soon...  

And no, I have no idea what I would take.  None.  Just something.  Anything.  Anything that can give me one last lingering memory of my home.  My childhood. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Fall Foto

So I've been neglecting my blog, you say??

Yeah, I know. 

I'm in a kind of funk right now that I can't explain.  I'm sure there's lots of contributors to my funk, but I won't air that all out in blog land. 

You're welcome.

So, instead I'm gonna post a picture.  One that makes me smile.

Because I love taking pictures.

And because I love fall.


I took that the other day on property I probably shouldn't have been on...but it was too cool to pass up.  And adding a trespassing arrest to my life right now would be just too appropriate (no worries, I didn't even get so much as a warning.)

I'm writing up some witty posts, so stay tuned for some updates on my life...and I'll try to get you a photo of one of the cutest little guys ever!! 

(T & H, if you're reading this, I NEED A PHOTO FIX...PRONTO!!  :))

Thursday, October 4, 2012

I expected the Rocky Mountains to be a little rockier than this...



Last weekend I had the pleasure of spending some time with Jeni and her family at her home in Colorado.

And it was pure awesome.

Seriously.

We talked a lot. We ate a lot (I was super scared to jump back on the scale when I got home, but I didn’t do too bad. Just a little bad.). We laughed a lot. 

It was what a girl’s weekend should have been. No disappointments.

Jeni was kind enough to let me stay with her in her beautiful home. Her daughter gave up her awesome room (and really comfy bed) for me for the weekend (thanks, Skyler!!). Her other daughter (Savannah) showed me some pretty slick dance moves. Jeni’s kids pretty much rock hardcore.

One night I was able to meet a fellow Circle surrogate-she was uber cool. She’s waiting for her transfer with an international gay couple—so she, Jeni and I had lots and lots to talk about. It’s always cool to meet up with people that hang out in the same awesome little world as what you do. I want to publicly wish her the best of luck with her transfer!!

Jeni and I are alike in many many ways (it's kinda scary, actually) however there’s one thing we disagree on:


Jeni (the driver...left side) is always cold.  Always.  I'm hot (temperature wise, kids).  Thank the Lord for dual climate control in the vehicle.  Had she had total control, I would have had to have taken Skyler or Savannah's bicycle everywhere...and exercising while on vacation is not fun for Jesse.  Good thing I packed my walking/running shoes because I used them never.

I knew we were going to go to a Stomp show on Sunday. What I didn’t know is how sucky our seats would be. So note:


Yeah. That’s the stage right in front of us.  FRONT ROW. (and for those of you that have no idea about the amount of sarcasm I can produce, “sucky” is hardly in the realm of a word I would use). It was amazeballs. Seeing Stomp is pretty awesome in itself. Seeing it from the front row was the coolest ever. We could see the sweat pouring off my new boyfriends’ face. Yes, I have a new boyfriend. I’d certainly love to provide you a photo of us together, but he’s touring with Stomp right now so you’ll have to wait. 

We may have very well had a Dog the Bounty Hunter sighting:


Okay, that really isn't Mr. Chapman, but it was close enough.

On Monday, Jeni and I became movie stars. I’ll dangle that little carrot for you but I promise I’ll supply you with my copy of the final product once it’s completed. :)

I’m headed into the absolute busiest time for my work, so a girls weekend was just what I needed to chill out and relax before the start of hell week (times at least 12 weeks).

Jeni, thank you to you and your family for your wonderful hospitality. I had the best time ever and can’t wait to come back!!