Thursday, March 31, 2011

Updizzle

An update on some stuff....I'm in a bullet point kind of mood...hope you're not bothered by bullet points...or when someone uses three "dot dot dots" after every sentence...



  • First of all, I have to give a great big CONGRATS to my dear friend Jeni. She's a surro and had her first beta today-199! I'm thinking twinkies!! Congrats to you and your IP's, dear!!
  • My lovely hubby had his little chat with "K" from the agency on Tuesday. I asked her how it went and I quote: "It was so lovely speaking with Jesse. It is clear to me that he is supportive of you desire to become a surrogate. I was very impressed by his commitment to you and your family." Yup, I still have tears in my eyes. He's awesome.
  • I have my MMPI scheduled for tomorrow! Wish me luck!
  • I did Day 2 of the Couch to 5K program yesterday and it sucked SO much more than Day 1. I don't know why. It's my shins--nothing else hurts. (Kristal, yes, I suppose some better stretching will help...) I stuck to it, though, and completed it. I am not going to do any walking today to try to give my legs a break--will do Day 3 either tomorrow or Saturday. Then I'll move on to Week 2 (if I make it through the next one...)


That's about it! I'll let you know how the MMPI goes tomorrow!


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Couch to 5K. Couch rhymes with OUCH. Coincidence?

I started the Couch to 5K program yesterday.  3 people have mentioned this program to me over the course of the last couple weeks (Whitni, Kathy & Kelly) and I thank them all for that.

I printed it out last week and it's been just sitting on my table.  Staring at me.  No really, here's what it looks like:

It's been my mouse pad. 

So yesterday I decided to just suck it up and start it.  In a nutshell, it's a 9 week program to get you "running" (okay, really jogging) a 5K (which is roughly 3 miles).

As I've mentioned, I've been walking a lot lately and have thrown in a jog or two.  But what I've been doing is nothing like this.  Before, I would just jog for a bit and then walk when I was tired.  (and now realized a "bit" was probably only 30 seconds worth) Doing this actual program holds me accountable for what I'm doing.  And because I'm a iPod freakazoid and have to have that dang thing with me where ever I am, I downloaded a pod-cast that is geared toward the Couch to 5K program.  That is AWESOME.  There's a guy telling me when I have to jog and when I can walk again.  Never mind that the music with it sounds like a cheesy 80's porno (not that I've ever watched cheesy 80's porn, but I'm sure that's what it would sound like...)

So yesterday was Week 1, Day 1.  It went great--I did it and STUCK to it.  There was no skimping out on any of it.  And after I did it (because it's only 20 minutes), I walked about a mile and a half (cause I had to get home LOL).  It felt good!  Well, my legs felt like crap when I woke up this morning, but what do they say--NO PAIN, NO GAIN right??  What really hurts is my shins!  Of all the parts of my body, I didn't really expect that. 

And because I needed a break from working from home, I walked 3 miles today :)  I think I'm now up to having walked about 50 miles over the course of the last 4 weeks.

On the surro front, my husband had his "chat" with "K" from the agency today.  He said it went well (I SO wanted to eavesdrop, but didn't).  So, assuming he didn't admit to a non-existent crack addiction, I should be hearing from the Dr to schedule the MMPI!  Cross your fingers we keep this process going! :)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Limos are cool. So is my hubby.

Okay, I have to do a "shout-out" kind of post here to my lovely husband.  The Sonny to my Cher (before their divorce).  The jelly to my peanut butter.  The pea to my carrot.  The Mario to my Luigi.  The Shrek to my Fiona.

Sorry...lost track of what I was talking about...

Oh yeah, my "shout out".

As I've likely mentioned in my blog before, my husband owns a limo service called Cheesehead Limousine.  He bought his first limo when he was 18 years old and the man is now 34 (don't tell him I mentioned his age on the world wide web, okay?).  He was an entrepreneur before I even had my drivers license (I'm waaaay younger than he is...okay not really THAT much young, but I'm a little younger).

This is my cutie hubby:



He's amazing at what he does.  No really, I'm not just saying that because I'm married to the guy. (by the way, we'll be celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary this September!)  He's a business owner and does a darn good job at it.  Of course I always have a better way of doing something (HA HA) but really-he's pretty awesome.

The current Cheesehead fleet consists of 3 beautiful black limos and a party bus.  Let's talk about the party bus for a second.  When he first started talking about buying one last year, I was like "whatever".  He would be the one to know if it would be a money maker or not.  So he spend endless hours online trying to find the perfect bus and here's what he found:
It's okay. Laugh some more.  I did. When we went to go pick it up, I gave him the "are you freaking kidding" look.  He was psyched and I had no idea why--but, he went ahead with the purchase (got it pretty cheap, too!).

A few months went by and he didn't really talk about the bus that much.  After Jesse (my husband) had taken all the stickers off of the exterior, it had pretty much had a new home at a body shop about an hour away, so I hadn't seen much of it.  Then, one day my husband tells me that the bus is done and we can go get it.

Okay, I thought...we'll see how this thing turned out.

And my jaw dropped.  That hideous yellow thing was transformed into this:


Here's a before shot of the interior:
(those are cabinets...it had no seating)
And here's the interior now:

We rented it for ourselves a few weeks ago for a party with 12 friends...it was the BEST.TIME.EVER.

And now, the talks of getting a second party bus are in full swing.  You wouldn't believe the number of people he has to turn down because he doesn't have one. 

Below is a shot of the Cheesehead Fleet.  You'll notice that not one car has a piece of cheese illuminated on the top (he gets that question ALL the time).


If you're in the Southeast Wisconsin area and need a limo, call him up.  You won't be disappointed.  Or, check out his site: www.cheeseheadlimo.com.  Tell him you follow his wifes' blog and maybe he'll cut you a deal :)

And there's my shout-out to the best limo service and best husband ever.

Friday, March 25, 2011

The call.

Isn't that a Backstreet Boy's song?  Hmmm...

Okay, sorry-back on point here. (coffee this late in the evening is not such a good thing-there's your warning that this blog post may be a little hyper).

So a social worker from the agency called me today...we'll call her "K".  She was super duper nice and we had a very nice conversation--for nearly 2 hours.  We went through everything:  why do I want to be a surrogate, do I understand the process, do I have a support system, my family life, my hobbies, my childhood, what does the agency do for surros, the compensation, etc...  It was really a screening to make sure that they think I can handle all of this.

Overall, I think it went really well and I'm pretty sure I came across as someone that is fairly competent. 

The next step is for "K" to have a little chat with the hubster.  That's already set up for next week Tuesday and I've warned said hubster about this.  He's totally on board and claims he's going to be on his best behavior...but for those that know my husband, I'm sure he'll be cracking some sort of joke at some point.  Thankfully, I did explain to "K" today that he's got a pretty big sense of humor.

After that, I get to take the notorious MMPI exam.  Oh goody goody.  I haven't taken one of these yet...but I've heard about them.  Once I get to that point, I'll share more about it :)

(PS-I just Googled "The Call" and turns out a number of artists have a song by this name, not just the Backstreet Boys...in case you were wondering...)

Anywho, I'm excited the process is movin' right along!

Ah, I love me some Muppet's! (fun Jesse fact of the day--I have 2 Muppet's tattooed on my body.  I'll share who (someday), but I won't share where they are....)

Oh, and remember how I said I was in medical record purgatory for like the last month?  Yes, the agency has everything now (finally)..but here's why it was so annoying:

That, my friends, is a stack of papers.  Those are my medical records--no, not every single record in my life...just OB/GYN and RE records.  Yeah, I killed a tree with those puppies. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Call with the agency tomorrow!

My call with the social worker from the agency is tomorrow! Yippee!

Someone asked me if I was nervous.  Nope, not in the least bit.  I love to talk (but I'm also a good listener), so this should be smooth sailing for me.

I'll keep ya'll posted on how it goes!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Does this bug you? Or am I weird?

Two blog posts in one day--I must be bored!

But really, I just have to say this.  I'm not bothered by a whole lot.  I've learned to take life as it's handed to me and just accept things the way they are or the way they're going to be.  It's what I have to do or else I'll go insane.

But there is something that bugged me bad this weekend.  So much so that it does warrant a mention.

I was "gassin' up" the Vue, taking in my surroundings when I saw this:

My jaw dropped.  And I distinctly remember saying "you've got to be kidding me"...to no one at all.

No, I don't really care that you're videotaping me.  Do it.  I'm not about to do anything that would find you a need to look at a tape.  Except maybe take the window washing thing and jab it in my eye.

Seriously.  I'm bothered by this.  I know my grammar isn't correct 100% of the time.  I admit that and except that (okay, I know that's the wrong form of the word "accept", but I'm just trying to be a wise ass here, people).  If I'm about to put a sign up...no wait...8 signs (there were 8 gas pumps) for everyone to see, you better be damn sure I'm going to use correct spelling and grammar.  And I think I'm going to put some responsibility on the sign-maker on this one as well.  I was in graphic design--if something doesn't look right or may not be spelled correctly, maybe you should tell your client and suggest a change. 

I ended up going inside the gas station to pay for my gas and mentioned my distraught on the poor use of the word "YOUR".  The guy behind the counter had no idea what I was talking about, nor did he seem to care.

Like I said, not a whole lot bugs me--but this one still gives me angst.

Jesse, it's a sticker on a gas pump.  Chill out.  I know--but man, this bugs me.  If anyone knows of a help group designed for people that can't deal with minute things like this, please let me know.

:)

Trailer Livin'

If you read my previous post, you saw a photo (the sunset one) that was taken in Door County.  I'd like to elaborate on this place a bit.  My family (hubby, kids and moi) just spent the last 3 days there-it was awesome.

We have a place that's right on the bay side (not the Lake Michigan side) and it's about 20 yards from the water.  The only thing between us and the water are some trees and a beach. 

Okay, I'm gonna come right out and say this.  It's a trailer--a mobile home (permanent one) that's approximately 2000 square feet.  Now please don't go callin' me "trailer trash" or anything like that.  Okay, well we call ourselves that so I guess you can.  But truly, it's not the kind of place you're going to find on the next episode of Cops.   Here, let me show you:

This is taken standing in the kitchen looking into the living room. (that's my mother-in-law, Colleen.  She rocks.)  Anyway, the window as you look straight on is the one that looks out onto the lake.
PS...those are not my cigarettes on the table.  They belong to my brother-in-law.  Just want to make that clear :)
It literally is a house.  In fact, the people that we got it from used it as a full-time home with 3 kids.  It's got 2 bedrooms, a nice sized bathroom and we're even pimpin with DirecTV.  It's our home away from home...and it's just a little over and hour and a half away, so it's not too bad of a drive.  There's even a few kayak's to use!

We have a small little rule at the trailer.  Well, 2 rules.  The first is "what happens at the trailer, stays at the trailer".  The second rule, and most important one is:  There are no rules. (besides the first rule...LOL)

We wanted a place to retreat where we didn't have to do anything if we didn't want to.  So, if you want to go for a walk and someone else doesn't, oh well.  That's their call and yours too.  If you want to eat chocolate chip cookies for breakfast, go for it.  If you want to play Nintendo all day (we have the Old School AND Nintendo 64 available for use) then do it. 

There's a nice big playground nearby (within walking distance) and we tend to go there a lot (after a chocolate chip cookie breakfast).  Sturgeon Bay (the largest City in Door County) is only a 13 minute drive, so if we need anything we can just go there (Target, Grocery Store, etc...).  Plus, the rest of Door County is beautiful (in the summertime) and we like to go up one side and down the other--we do that a few times a summer.  It's perfect.

Here are some more pics from our "place": 
Attempting to rescue the princess...

Want some wine and don't have a wine glass?  Use a disposable coffee cup!
Lots of places to play!
Anyway, if you ever find yourself in Door County, WI and want a cheap place to stay, just let me know.  But please remember the rules :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Just cause I'm kinda bored...

I was looking through some old photos that I have taken over the years and wanted a share a few favorites...not because they're the best photo in the world, but because they're just neat.  


I love this picture.  I love it because it is so real to me.  Just look at his expression.  All I hear him saying is "yes, dear."....all.....day....long.  It's either that or he's a complete boob.  I took this photo while in Switzerland.  I do not know these people but looking back I wish I would have sat down right next to him and learned his life story.  I'm sure it was a good one.



An "Ice Bucket" at a hotel in London.
I thought it was hilarious.  Kinda makes me feel wasteful when I fill one of those "real" ice buckets up at the Holiday Inn.


We have a place in Door County (hold your left hand out in front of you (palm facing out).  Kinda looks like Wisconsin, right?  Your thumb would be Door County.  Though this view isn't right from our window, it's close.  And still pretty awesome. 
Ah....so peaceful....until I step in the goose poop...



If you know my husband, you know he's probably one of the funniest and goofiest people you'll meet.  Regularly, he makes me laugh until I cry and I love him for that.  Some of the stuff he does, though, gets the old "eyebrow" from me...but I'm always there with the camera.  Take this, for instance.  He had this idea to have a pond dug on our property.  Luckily, he actually hired someone to dig it (God only knows what would have happened if he rented a front end loader and dug it himself).  After a few days of digging out all the dirt, it started filling up with water.  My husband, anxious to get his pond, decided to take a dip.  See above.  Normal behavior?  Perhaps...if it were a real pond and he were wearing a bathing suit. 
And here is the end product of above mentioned pond.  And we love it.


In surro news, I have a call scheduled with a social worker with the agency on Friday!  Woot Woot!  Can't wait to get this show on the road and get some babies bakin' for some deserving people (whomever that may be...).


Happy Weekend, Everyone! Enjoy what you do and enjoy who you do it with.
(and GOOD LUCK to my bud, Jeni!!!)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patty's Day!

Been jammin' out to Riverdance all day.  I'm kinda feeling a need to do a jig for some reason.  Wish I actually knew how to do a jig.

Anyway, Happy St. Patty's Day to you all!

And because I think I'm so funny, I got my husband and one of his drivers' their new tuxedo limo-driving garb.  So, if you rent a limo from Cheesehead Limousine today, here's what your driver will be wearing.


HA HA HA! Ah....I kill me.

And, as they say in Ireland, Sl├ín leat. (goodbye in Gaelic)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Mommy got some new shoes.

I did! Really!
Check 'em out!

I've been walking nearly every day for the past 3 weeks (even when it's freaking cold out) and I'm doing about 3 miles each time.  It's been great, but I'm ready to amp it up...I've thrown in a jog here and there and though my body hates me, I'm pushing through it.  I want to start jogging even more and then eventually *gasp* start running!!

I've been wearing a pair of sneakers that I got when I was pregnant with Elliot...6 years ago.  I could be wearing a pair of British Knights and wouldn't know the difference.

I went to the New Balance store in Milwaukee this afternoon and the chick that helped was a total narbladoid.  She could have cared less I was gonna drop a Benjamin on some rubber with laces.  But, I found what I wanted at the store, wrote it down and then left and ordered the shoes online...for nearly half price!!

So, I'm excited to get them, to use them and to start running!



And since this is a "Surrogacy Journey" and I've not updated anything on that lately, I'll give you a taste--I applied at an agency and everything is going fairly well. I haven't been "accepted" yet, but hopefully all will be good!  I was in medical record purgatory for the past few weeks, but I think I finally have everything the agency needs.  As I get more updates, I will surely share! :)

Adios Amoebas.


(ya'll remember British Knights, right??)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Sloppy Joes.

I love the Pioneer Woman.  (thank you, KC, for turning me on to her!!)

If you've never heard of her or checked out her web-site, do it.  Seriously.

The Pioneer Woman's Web-Site

I've tried many of the receips she's posted and there's not one that I haven't liked. 

I made her sloppy joes the other day and yes, I felt the need to blog about it.  Really.  They were AWESOME and truly deserve their own blog post.

(and plus I'm running out of stuff to blog about so why not do it regarding a sloppy joe.  A really good sloppy joe.)

Here's the recipe.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I like sax.

Get your mind out of the gutter.

Okay, I like that too...

But I'm here to talk about sax--saxophone.  I play one. 

I took up piano when I was about 6 and caught on pretty quick.  A couple years later, I started playing flute (my mom kept telling me she wanted me to be like Ian Anderson from Jethro Tull--only took me about 10 years to figure out who that was...and how awesome he is).  Anyway, I played both piano and flute all through elementary school and middle school.

The first day of high school band my freshman year, Mr. S asked if there was anyone in the band that wanted to switch instruments.  My hand was the first to go up. Not that I didn't like flute, but I was a person of adventure.  I had no idea what he was going to ask me to play--he led me over to this massively huge case and opened it and I saw something like this:


A beautiful Yamaha baritone saxophone.

The next day, I was playing it in band. Took me 30 seconds to figure the thing out.

And I rocked it.  I loved that thing.

I played it in concert band, I played it in jazz band.  I played it in German band (side note:  the High School I went to has the only high school German Band in the Country)

I even marched with it.  Did the 4-mile German Fest Parade in Chicago.  Proof:
 


Don't be knockin' the garb. 

My sophomore year in high school I transitioned to the tenor sax.  It was MUCH lighter.

Here I am doing a solo at a concert:



And I dabbled in the soprano as well:


I played soprano sax only as often as I HAD to.  Remember this post?  Yeah, I'm as big of a fan as Kenny G as I am of poking my eyeballs with a ballpoint pen.

Going into my junior year, I transitioned yet again to the alto sax and that's what I play now.  I got a pretty shiny brand new one that year and that's the one I still play today.  Of course I don't have a picture of me playing it.  Doh.

I still play as often as I can.  I'm in a municipal band in the summers and jam out on my own every now and again.

Yes, I went to band camp.

Yes, I like sax.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My "Survivor"

Since I'm kinda stuck in surro limbo, I wanted to keep my blog comfy and cozy with something else.  Sometimes, my head is swimming with so much stuff I could blog about...and other times I can't even remember my kids' names. 

No really, I called Emerson "London" 3 times today.  Is this normal??  Hope so.

Back to keeping the blog comfy and cozy...you're likely going to get some future posts from me that have nothing to do with anything.  Just warning you. :)  Until I get some good surro stuff to start blogging about again, you're going to get a nice installment of

TOTAL JESSE RANDOMNESS

(and many posts will involve photos--I know how much everyone likes photos!)

And so to begin my total randomness....I will start with just that, a photo!

Anyone a Survivor fan?  Even if you're not, I'm sure you know who this is...my son Elliot was lucky enough to be held by the great Jeff Probst and his girlfriend (I wonder if they're still dating??) a few years ago.  Cool, eh?

Friday, March 4, 2011

Horsin' Around

Some of you may not know this about me--but I used to be a pretty avid horse person.  My father re-married a woman when I was 3 (we'll call her Barb...cause that's really her name...).  She was into horses.  Arabian Horses.  I was 3, didn't know to much about anything but remember becoming pretty interested in the horse world.

I showed my first horse when I was 6.  It was a lead-line class and I remember it vividly.  It was at the State Fair Park in Milwaukee and Barb (my "leader") and I wore similar shirts that she had made (it was white with plaid patches on it).   I know she's got a photo of that somewhere and I'm going to have to get my hands on it.

The horse was Ed. (well, his real name was Fifth Edition ++//...the "++//" are kind of designations in the Arabian Horse world).  Ed was awesome.  More than awesome.  Ed taught me so much growing up.  He was the bestest friend anyone could have.  And as I sit here and type this and I'm thinking about him, I'm crying.  I loved Ed more than anything.

I showed horses from that very summer that I was 6 until the summer before I turned 19.  Nearly every weekend in the summers we were travelling to horse shows.  Many of them were local--not so much the county fair type shows, but what were called "Class A" shows--and by local I mean Milwaukee.  A lot were also nationwide (IL, OK, IN just to name a few).  When you do good in a Class A show, you qualify for regionals.  When you do good at regionals, you qualify for nationals.  I did it all.  Every summer for 12 years I was home maybe 2-3 weeks out of the year.  I lived out of a motorhome with my dad and step-mom (and got other people involved as the years went on...).  And I loved every second of it.

Showing horses taught me work ethic.  It taught me how to win and how to lose.  It was demanding, it was hard work--but I wouldn't take it back for a second.  As I look back I now realize how lucky I truly was to experience what I did growing up.  My parents sacrificed a lot for me and I will forever be indebted to them for that.

That entire time, Ed and I were a team.  We showed nearly every type of class known in the horse world--Western, Hunt, English, Side-Saddle, Dressage.  We did it all-Ed was so versatile--he was amazing.  Barb also showed Ed in many classes and as the years went on, he was a teacher to many. 

Further into my horse "career", it was time to get my own horse--and SFA Silverado (Silver) came into the picture.  I basically had to train him from day one.  He had never had a saddle on his back or had a handler work with him.  He was a little on the "hyper" side, but I still loved him.

Before I finish my story here, I wanted to take a look back and share some photos of this so important part of my life...

This is probably the most prestigious award I received with Ed.  I was Reserve National Champion in Canada in 1993.  I can't remember exactly how many were in my class, but I'm guessing it was over 50.  It was a big deal.  I'm proud of that moment.


This was a Region 10 (WI & MN) Championship I received for a Western Equitation class--that's where they judge the rider more so than the horse.

This was taken the last year I showed..I received a Top Ten at Youth Nationals in Oklahoma City, OK (1996).  It was a Hunter Seat Equitation class (where they judge the rider, not the horse).  A Top Ten was kind of a big deal because the class started out at nearly 200.  It also involved a 2 minute memorized pattern than had to be performed in front of the judges.

Our family Christmas Card photo.  I think around 1994 ish??  That's my dad (Mark), Barb and me with Ed.



And here's Silver--sorry for the cruddy quality on this one.  This was actually a Senior picture of mine taken in 1996.  He was cute.





And here's Silver and I at a show. :)


I loved Ed and Silver.  I also loved the other horses I had the opportunity to ride and show (Axpensive Hobby (Markie), Four Onda Floor (Majik) and MDF Wizard of Oz (Oz)).

I got older and "grew out" of the horse thing.  Silver and I never bonded as much as Ed and I did, so by the time I was 19, Silver was headed to a new home to be enjoyed by others.  Ed stayed around the family farm.  We retired him from the showing world, but he still did the 4-H circuit with "renters".  I can't tell you how much love that horse got (and I'm crying again) and how much love he returned.

Ed died just a couple years ago.  I will forever be indebted to a horse for teaching me to be the person I am today.  I know that sounds corny, but it's true.  I learned SO MUCH from him, from the training, from the early mornings and late nights, from the many blue ribbons and the nights I cried myself to sleep for not placing. 

And that, my friends, is called horsin' around.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Chuggin' Along...

Is "chuggin'" even a kind of word? Hmmm...

So I'm not going to get into many details on the surro front but will say this...things are, as I like to say, chuggin' along.  I've made some pretty important decisions over the past week or so and am happy about things.

I want to be a surrogate.  Would I like to be one for B & T? Absolutely.  And if they came to me in a year or two and said we'd like to try again and I'm available-would I say yes?  Pretty sure I would.  But for reasons I'm not going to get into because it's not really my business to, B & T are done trying for now.  And that's okay. I understand and accept that and can't thank or appreciate them enough for the opportunity they had given to me over the past year.

And now it's time for Jesse to, as REO Speedwagon says...ROLL WITH THE CHANGES.

And I'm rolling.

I don't want to get into ALL the details quite yet, but let's just say things are moving forward in my life and my journey to be a surrogate.  I'm going to leave it at that for now until I'm more comfortable in where I'm at to start sharing all the juicy details.

Please pray for me, for B & T, for all the surro's in the world, for all the IP's in the world.

I'll leave you with this...REO singing aforementioned song with my boys, STYX!