Saturday, February 26, 2011

Under Construction

I'm working on making some changes to the ol' blog and working on launching the blog for my photography business.  Because of that, things might look a little wonky around here for a little bit.  Hang tight!  I'll have everything looking normal again in a couple of days after I get everything all set up and situated.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Drew Turns 31

Today is Drew's 31st birthday.  After the surprise party that I threw for him last year, I knew he would just rather have a low key celebration at home.  Plus, when he bought me my birthday present, he told me that he didn't want a big gift.  He really wants to see me succeed with my photography venture. 

So, I bought him the new Zac Brown Band CD that he told me that he wanted, and we just hung out around the house.  Low key, but nice nonetheless.

Happy Birthday Drew!!!

Monday, February 21, 2011


I just wanted to share a couple of photos that I recently took of Leo.
Just a quick toss, Mom, to get the static out!
Watch cat.

He's lucky he's cute and can redeem himself after all the trouble that he gets into.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

New Glass

I just purchased a new lens!  SQUEEEEEEEE!!!!  Drew gave me his blessing and encouraged me to purchase some new glass and even pushed me to purchase a better one than I originally had my eye on.

You see, I was going to purchase a 50mm f/1.4.  I hesitated though.  I know that a good quality prime will be amazing to shoot with, but I just didn't know if I would miss the ability to zoom.  I love being able to zoom on my kit lenses.  So, I bought the Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G.
Isn't that a thing of beauty?  It is scheduled to arrive here on Thursday.  I ended up ordering from B&H, which is extremely reputable.  The best part?  Free shipping and no tax!

Who wants to do a session?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Chocoholic Frolic 2011

Last night was the annual Chocoholic Frolic at the Clock Tower Resort.  My aunt, my mom, and I all had such a great time last year, that we immediately knew we had to go this year.  We also added a few more people to our group.
In the back is Erin, my aunt Lori, my cousin's girlfriend Sheena, and my mom.  My sister and I are in the front. 

The doors opened at 6:30 PM and everybody poured into the room.  They made a smart decision, and decided to put the chocolate fountain in the middle of the room this year.  I made a beeline to that and immediately grabbed a marshmallow and strawberry to dip in the chocolate.  YUM!!
 There were these cute little signs on all the tables.  I only got a shot of this one though.  I think that it's cute that they have all the chocolate sayings on them.  I do wish that they would have had more garbages set out.  At almost every station, the chocolate was handed out on some paper or a plastic cup, and there was nowhere to throw the garbage.  I spent more time hunting down a garbage can so I could throw away my trash and have a free hand than eating the chocolate.
This is a chocolate hazelnut martini.  It was just ok to me.  Everybody else loved it, but I wasn't too crazy about the hazelnut flavor.
There were so many different kinds of chocolate.  Unfortunately, I was still feeling kind of crappy, so I wasn't able to enjoy it nearly as much as I would have liked to.  I did have a few favorites though.  I enjoyed the Poor Man's Turtles, Triple Chocolate Parfait, and Chocolate Marble Cake.

I already can't wait for next year!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Broken Down

Soooo. . . . .
I had a monitoring ultrasound this morning.  It wasn't good.  First off, let me just say that I have felt like death since Saturday.  Everyday has been filled with headaches, dizziness, hot flashes, nausea, and to top it all off, I was spotting last night and this morning.  I have never spotted mid-cycle, ever!  I have never felt this crappy taking the Clomid.

I was really looking forward to my appointment this morning so that I could tell them about how I've been feeling.  I assumed that I was overstimulated and that's why I was feeling so crappy.  That's couldn't be farther from the truth.  I only have one measurable follicle, and a bunch of little ones.  My doctor came in to talk to me and he said that I'm not feeling crappy from the medicine and he thinks that I've responded so poorly because I've felt so crappy.  He says that my body has no interest in getting pregnant when I feel this way.  Then he told me that he thinks I'm suffering from the flu.  What a quack!  Does he honestly mean to tell me that I've been suffering from flu-like symptoms since Saturday without actually coming down with the flu. 

So, they did the trigger shot and Drew and I are just going to have some fun on our own.  Doc doesn't think it's worth it to do the IUI.  He says that it's not impossible to get pregnant, but from the sound of it, he's not holding his breath.  I'm still going to take all of the hormones.  I know that it only takes one egg and one sperm, so I'm trying to be optimistic.  We have also decided that we'll probably take next month off from the meds.  Although, if I get a negative test in a couple of weeks, I may ask them if I can take a different kind of medicine (Femara) that doesn't have the side effects that Clomid does.

I just feel defeated.  I'm obviously upset.  I try so hard not to be bitter towards people who are pregnant or have babies, but it's hard.  God knows how badly I want to be a mother, and I'm having a difficult time trying to put my trust in Him.  I feel forgotten about.  I feel like everybody else gets to live my dream and there is nothing that I can do but change my dreams.  What makes this even harder is that nobody close to me understands what I'm going through.  I have no close friends that I can talk to about this.  And I need somebody to talk to.  I need a shoulder to cry on.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Dear Clomid

You suck a lot this month!

Usually the side effects that I experience from the Clomid aren't too bad.  I get the occasional hot flash, but nothing too traumatic.  This month has been a whole different story!

I have had a few hot flashes.  The headaches have been awful.  I can still function, but they aren't fun.  I was so nauseous yesterday that I had to spend a good portion of the day laying on the couch.  The worst one of all, I have been a hormonal mess.  Poor Drew.  He's probably ready to lock me away with how crazy I've been.  I can go from completely fine to uber bitch in about 0.5 seconds flat. 

I definitely think that I'm going to be mentioning these side effects when I go to my appointment on Thursday.  I don't know if I can do another month like this if the IUI doesn't work this month.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Until Death Do Us Part

Those 5 words.  They hold quite a lot, don't they?  I know that Drew and I said them to each other on our wedding day.  The day that we stood in front of our families, our friends, and GOD and confessed our love for each other and our desire to stay with each other UNTIL DEATH DO US PART.  The traditional wedding vows contain that phrase and most couples say them to each other on their wedding day.

So, what happens along the way where people forget that promise?  How can they forget the day that they promised each other the greatest promise that will ever leave their lips?  What goes wrong?

I know that Drew and I haven't been married for very long.  In fact, in the grand scheme of life, we've barely made a blip in the line.  However, divorce is NOT an option for us!!!  I am adamant about this.  We were very clear to lay that out on the table before he even asked for my hand in marriage.  The only thing that could happen that would cause me to divorce my husband is if he started beating on me or my child.  That's it.  Physical harm would be the only case where divorce would be brought into the possible solutions.  I can also promise that there would be many bills to a therapist before any decision was made.

Drew and I had a discussion the other day about couples and divorce.  I told him that I could never imagine another partner in my life but him.  We have been through so much together.  How could anyone possibly take his place?  How could things ever get so bad that we forget to put our love and marriage first.

I have made it known that our marriage will come first in our lives.  Even after we have children, our marriage will take precedence.  I fully believe that if you don't have a good marriage, you can't be good parents.  Children need to be raised in a home where they see their parents loving and respecting one another.  If they don't see that, the children will not respect the parents, their peers, or even their future mates.  The children will learn that the behavior they see their parents display is acceptable and will emulate that in their lives.  Now, if one parent constantly disrespects the other, the child will pick up on that behavior and carry it into their subsequent relationships.  Drew and I will be taking the time out of lives to put our marriage first when children come into the picture.  We will have date nights and vacations alone, as a couple.  I fully believe that this is of the utmost importance.

I also wonder, what makes people so selfish in a relationship.  A relationship, a marriage, is about two people working together.  It takes two people to give, two people to compromise, two people to put effort into growing and building the relationship.  Why do people put habits, or material things, in front of their marriage?  Drew chews, and I hate it, with a passion.  I hate to look at him when he has that stupid lump in his lip.  He looks extremely unattractive and it's a gross habit.  If I were to tell Drew that it bothered me that badly, he would stop.  He would no longer chew if it meant saving our marriage.  However, I don't think that I'd be so selfish to end my marriage over something so stupid.  And he would whole-heartedly agree.  There was a time when we used to sleep with an extra blanket on top of the bed.  After making the bed in the morning, I would just throw the blanket in a wad somewhere on the bottom corner of the bed.  Drew told me one day that it really bothered him that I didn't fold it.  I never knew he actually cared that much.  Ever since that day, the blanket was neatly folded and placed on the end of bed.  Simple things that each person can do in a relationship to make life better for the other.

Drew and I don't have a perfect relationship.  Nobody does.  We quarrel.  We bicker.  We nit pick at each other.  But at the end of day?  We love each other.  We respect each other.  We love and respect one another when we're alone, and in front of other people too.  I know that I have called Drew out on some of his dumb moves, and have made them public.  Drew has managed to get two speeding tickets in the six months that we've owned the Acadia.  When I posted it on Facebook, the other Drew called me out and told me to quit throwing him under the bus.  I never call Drew out maliciously.  Was I a little angry when he got home?  I sure was.  But, I'm also quite sarcastic, and whatever gets posted publicly is always for a laugh and never in anger or disrespect.  He knows that.  Drew knows that any feelings that I have that are negative or angry are for us, behind closed doors. 

I've sort of gone off the beaten path on this post.  My point, is that marriage is a covenant that is entered into until death.  It is the biggest promise that you make to your spouse.  If you can't honor that, how can you expect your spouse to trust anything that you ever say again?  I urge you to look into your marriage and see if there are things that can be done to love and respect your spouse more.  Remember that it takes two people in a relationship, both putting forth effort.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

I Get By. . .

. . . With a little help from my friends.

I walked out to the mailbox earlier this afternoon to put a birthday card in there for my brother-in-law.  When I opened the door, I saw something in there and my first thought was, "Oh damn, the mail's already come".

As I pulled out the contents, I quickly realized that it wasn't a typical package.  Wanna see what it was?
Conversation hearts!!!  Yes, I even squealed a little bit.  When I got inside, I opened up the card to find out who had left such a sweet gift, even though I already had an inkling.  I was right by my guess, but I wasn't prepared for what was inside.  My friend, Khristy, had also gotten me a gift card to Lundgren's Camera that was totally unnecessary.

I cried.  Big, fat, happy tears.  I showed Drew and asked him if he knew anything about this.  He did.  Surprisingly, he was able to keep that secret!  I started to cry and he was worried that I was sad.  I told him that they were happy tears because I don't think I've ever had a friend do something so sweet for me.

I am so blessed that Khristy came into my life.  She is the wife of one of Drew's coworkers.  I always joke that Donny is Drew's boyfriend, because of how they act around each other.  They went to A&P school together, so they spent A LOT of time together, and now they work together.  I love how we have so many couple friends that we can hang out with.

"A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter; he who finds one finds a treasure." - Sirach 6:14

Thursday, February 3, 2011


My 2nd IUI was a big fat fail.

There really are no words because my heart is broken.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Blizzard 2011




We just had the blizzard of a lifetime here in the Midwest.  The snow started yesterday at about 3 PM and continued to pummel the area until sometime this morning.  The wind was absolutely insane.  The house made noises and felt like it was going to fall down at any moment.

I took this picture at about 1 AM.  Notice Drew's right arm on the right side.
This is the same drift taken this afternoon.
This is the south side of our house.  That snow drift goes about halfway up the door!  Crazy!

And here's our mailbox.

All of this ice can't possibly be good for my gutters!
I am so over winter.  I usually am way before now, but these snow storms just push it over the edge.  Is it spring yet?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Chicken Pasta Primavera

I haven't posted a lot of recipes on here, so I thought that I'd share one of my favorites since Drew made it tonight for dinner.  We found this recipe in a Taste of Home "Meals in Minutes" recipe card book that we have.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Yield: 6 servings

6 ounces uncooked spaghetti
1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
3/4 cup water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1-1/2 teaspoons dried basil
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 package (16 ounces) frozen California-blend vegetables, thawed  (We usually used frozen mixed vegetables.)
4 cups cubed cooked chicken breast  (We usually use the packaged chicken pieces that you can use for salads and things.)
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

1)  Cook spaghetti according to package directions.

2)  Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine the soup, water, lemon juice, basil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.  Stir in vegetables; bring to boil.

3)  Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 3-5 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

4)  Stir in chicken; heat through.

5)  Drain spaghetti; add to chicken mixture and toss to coat.  Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.