Thursday, December 27, 2007

We saw our babies yesterday

I thought it was stressful trying to get pregnant. I am just as stressed being pregnant! Some of this is probably too much info but it's part of pregnancy. I started spotting on Christmas Day (Second time since we found out I am pregnant. First time was from first ultrasound and everything was OK). I pretty much was in a panic all day. Then it stopped at night. But I got up at 3 am to go to bathroom and it started again but worse. I sat up all night freaking out. I called my Dr. right at 9 am and they had me come in. She said my cervix was still closed but she can't tell where it was coming from. So she sent me in for an ultrasound. I was so relieved to know I was going to see what was really going on.

We have 4 arms, 4 legs, two heartbeats going at 171 and they are both measuring exactly 10 weeks 4 days. (I'm 10 weeks 3 days). Twin A was doing flips. The Dr doing the ultrasound said I have about 4 - 5 cysts and it looks like one ruptured and that is what is probably bleeding. He could see fluid right by one of them. He said they won't harm babies but I may experience some pain and more spotting/bleeding. I feel so much better. So freaking cool to see them big and moving around. Call me paranoid mother already.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

We're hanging in there

First of all I must say - GO PACKERS!! 12-2 baby and the Cowboys lost too. What a year, we never thought we would be 12-2. Don't you love how I say "we" when I talk about Packers?

The snow must stop. If you don't know this already, I hate snow. HATE. Despise. I know, I know, I am in the wrong state and yes I grew up here. I have never liked it and never will. The advantage of living in a condo is that I do not have to shovel. I have huge icicles hanging off my window that could kill someone if they fell. I thank God for my four wheel drive. I will never go back as long as I live in WI. Oh, and can we talk about how cold it is?

We've been busy getting ready for Christmas. I can't believe Christmas Eve is a week away. The tree is up, most of the presents are purchased, Christmas music is being played in our house and cars. But as our Pastor pointed out today, the most important reason why we celebrate Christmas is easily forgotten during all the craziness - the birth of our Savior.

As for the twins? I think they are doing good. I wish I could have an ultra sound ever week to make sure they are OK. I'm trying be patient as we wait for our next Dr appointment on January 9th. We hope to actually hear the heartbeats at that appointment. It's so hard to stay calm and positive. I think so many years of failure makes it hard to be excited and positive. I'm taking care of myself and trying to place my faith in God. It doesn't help that I have always been a worrier.

Have a great week and stay warm!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Picture of the babies

I promised I would post a picture of the ultrasound.

We are doing good. I'm 7 weeks and 3 days today. Still cautious, nervous, excited and scared. I have my first OB appointment tomorrow.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

We are pregnant!................With twins!!

Sorry for not giving an update sooner. I just wanted to feel a little more confident with our confirmed pregnancy.
Monday, November 12 was my first blood test. I had cramps all weekend and I was sure I was not pregnant. My plans for that Monday night were to go for a long run and drink some wine. But the nurse called and said, "congratulations, you are pregnant." I think my response was "huh?" My beta (for those who are familiar with those numbers) was 155. Shocked, complete shock. We were 4 weeks. I had to get another blood test on Thursday, November 15. Those numbers had to double, which they did to 750. I didn't have any symptoms except that I was beyond bloated. We were excited to finally know that we could get pregnant, but we were staying very cautious. We told close family members and friends who knew our IVF schedule but told them to not get so excited yet, it's still very early.
Yesterday was probably one of the most amazing days of my life. We went down to Gurnee for our ultrasound. Dr. Sherbahn performed the ultrasound and Dr. Jain was in there too. We saw a pregnancy sack right away and Dr. Sherbahn focused in on it more and there was this little baby and he said, "there's the heartbeat." It was so clear. I started to cry. Then he said, "lets look to see if there is another." I was thinking it would have been visible right away if there were two. "There is the other pregnancy sack" he said "and there is another heartbeat." Wow. I was squeezing Jaime's hand so hard. Then Dr. Sherbahn said, "Twins are OK, right?" We both laughed and said of course, we feel so blessed.
He went back and measured each of them and they were measuring perfect. I was 6 weeks and 4 days yesterday and they were measuring 6 weeks and 3 days which according to Dr. Sherbahn is perfect. We got to see the heartbeats again and they took some pictures.
We said goodbye to all the Doctors and nurses and that was sad! We really loved every single person in that clinic. I highly recommend it to anyone going through infertilityand lives in the area. It was worth the hour drive and we would have drove more.
It is still early. I'm only 6 weeks and 5 days. We are excited but still very cautious. We are just going to take one day at a time.
We are just so thrilled to know that we can actually get pregnant, we have never been this far in the 2 1/2 years that we have been trying.
I will post a picture of our BABIES once I scan them.
Thank you again for stopping by and posting such wonderful comments.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

A little late, but better than never

Happy Thanksgiving. It's been a long year for us but I do have a lot to be thankful for.
1. My husband. He has been my strength and best friend through this year. I don't know what I would do without him.
2. My family. It's been hard not having our dad around this year but we have pulled together and gotten each other through this year. We had reasons to laugh and cry and we have been there for each other through it all.
3. My in-laws. They have always welcomed me into their family and I have always felt part of the group.
4. My cat. She's been with me for ten years and she is my babe. She sits by me when I cry, she makes me laugh, she snuggles at night and has learned to talk back to me.
5. My girlfriends. I love them dearly. Everyday I can expect to laugh from their emails. They have been the most supportive group of ladies.
6. My new ifriends. Funny who you can "meet" on the Internet.
7. Our condo. Such a blessing to have a wonderful place to live and be so close to work.
8. My job. I have accomplished a lot this year and I'm still learning. I am looking forward to a new year and a new group of co-workers.
9. Our church. We have gotten more involved with music and the youth and have had the opportunity to meet more people and establish wonderful relationships. We are so privileged to have a wonderful Pastor and caring staff.
10. Washington Island. My in-laws have a house up there and we get to go up there for our little vacations during the summer. It's always a relaxing and fun time.
11. The Packers. 10-1 baby!
12. Reruns of friends.
13. A good glass of red wine.
14. A long run along the lakefront.
15. Jazz in the Park.
16. Summer

Happy Turkey Day! I hope you had time to reflect what you were thankful for and had plenty of pumpkin pie.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

We will know next week

But I probably won't post any results right away. I want to give us time to take everything in and either be sad or happy. I also want to have time to inform family of either result.

But I will post a result at some point when I feel comfortable. Sorry!

I'm trying to be positive.

Thanks again for all of your thoughts, comments and prayers. It really means so much to us.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

The most beautiful picture

Those are our embryos. Three of them. Wow, isn't it amazing? Isn't science amazing? Isn't God amazing?
The two on top were higher quality so we transferred those. The third may continue to grow and if it does, we hope to freeze it.

Everything went smooth today.

We are truly blessed by all of you who have been thinking of us, praying for us and posting comments and sending notes.

Now I relax.

I pray this cycle works. If it doesn't we at least know we have two more chances, my eggs are good, we can fertilize and we can get embryos. This is very good news for us.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


The egg retrieval went good. We got there at 10 am and they took us to our own room. They started prepping me right away. The bad part was once the IV needle was in I became faint and they had to lower my bed which helped. Once I got in the procedure room things happened fast. The nurses, doctors and medical assistants were efficient, personable and very informative. They got me in the bed, gave me oxygen, put me in these crazy stir-ups (not your typical stir-ups) and then started the drugs. The good, sweet, wonderful drugs. I was conscious but sedated. The doctors came in and I started talking football to one of them and then I don't remember much. I felt two little pinches as he was puncturing the wall to get to the eggs. That is all I remember. I was back in my room with Jaime in no time. I was so drugged up, my blood pressure was as low as 87/43. They nurses checked on me every 5 minutes. Dr. Sherbahn came in to report they got 6 eggs; not bad, not great but good. The nurses had to give us our finally instructions and we were on our way home. I was a little nauseous on the way home but once I got on my couch I started feeling better, just some slight cramps.

Today was got the fertilization report. Of the 6 eggs, 5 were good and they were able to ICSI the five (inject sperm directly into the egg) and 4 fertilized. Tentative embryo transfer set is set for Thursday.

I'm happy and sad. I'm happy to know I have good eggs. I'm happy to know that my eggs and his sperm can fertilize. But I'm sad that we are doing a three day transfer vs. a five day transfer. Usually a five day transfer has higher success rates. I'm also sad that we only got 6 eggs. Some women can get 20 or 30! But it's all numbers and it can get very overwhelming. I have to just stop thinking about it and continue to do what I can do to make this work. I have to let go, and trust the doctors and God.

So my feelings today were:
  • Great! They fertilized 4 eggs.
  • Only 4?
  • Why can't I get pregnant, I'm healthy, I take care of my body, I want a baby. I'm sick of people around me getting pregnant that aren't even planning it!
  • OK, at least we know my eggs are good.
  • We do have two more chances if this doesn't work.
  • God is in control.
  • I can't believe I have to get a 1 1/2 inch needle shoved into my rear tonight.
  • Wow, right now down in Gurnee, IL our babies are being created in a dish. Our babies. A piece of me and Jaime.
  • Just pray hard for strong embryos.
I'll let you know tomorrow how bad that progesterone shot really is. Ugh.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Bravelle, Menopur and Ganirelix Oh My!

What is that you ask? The names of the drugs that have taken over my body this past week. Bravelle is a highly purified preparation of human follicle stimulating hormone (hFSH). Menopur is a highly purified preparation of naturally derived gonadotropins, called hMG. It contains equal amounts of 2 kinds of hormonal activity: follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), which helps stimulate egg production; and luteinizing hormone (LH), which helps the eggs mature and release (ovulate). And finally, Ganirelix is used to suppress premature luteinizing hormone (LH) surges. This prevents eggs from being released prematurely.

This is a picture of how we prepared every morning and evening for the drugs.

Here is a picture of all those drugs that we have used.

The good news is that our egg retrieval (click on egg retrieval for a description of procedure) is scheduled for tomorrow morning. This means I have responded well to all the drugs. I'm nervous and excited. I would really like to see 8-10 eggs. They also need to be mature and of high quality. Hopefully we'll get a great fertilization report. The embryo transplant will take place 3-5 days after the egg retrieval. During this time I will need to start taking progesterone, by injection, which a hormone that is naturally produced in the ovaries It will help to prepare and thicken the lining of the uterus for the implantation of a fertilized egg. Progesterone is necessary to support and maintain a pregnancy should conception occur. The injections goes in my butt, the needle is 1 1/2 inches long. And the entire needle must go into my muscle. People, I don't do needles. This has been hard enough. Do you know how big that needle is?

That is big! I'm really freaked by that injection, and there is more than one. Trying so hard to stay positive. I'll update you when I find out how many eggs we get. Thank you for all your support, comments, prayers and for reading!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

We have started the injections

Saturday morning we were scheduled for a "loading dose" which required two separate injections. My husband was amazing. I started mixing the drugs but was nervous and was shaking a bit so he took over and was very calm. These injections are going in my stomach, so we did one on one side and one on the other. Not too bad we thought. This morning the injection hurt a little more and drew some blood. I don't have tons of fat on my stomach so he hit the muscle a bit. My stomach has been a little sore all day. I've been really tired and I have a bad headache. I'm sure it's just from the stress. Tonight's injection sucked. I thought I picked a good fatty spot and was in a good position. Nope, it hurt and I started crying. I don't know if I cried because it hurt or if because I was frustrated and started thinking of how much more we have to do. More injections, more blood, more ultrasounds etc.
This too shall pass.

Here is a picture of us mixing our injections Saturday morning.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

I'm enjoying the last of my wine

I need to catch up. But real quick, we had our baseline ultrasound and bloodwork on Wed. Everything looks good. The nurses were great and answered all my questions, which included, "What can I do and not do once I start my medications on Saturday."
"Treat your body like you are pregnant. No alcohol, ibuprofen, medications, caffeine, etc."
OK, I don't drink much beer or liquor but I love my wine. I just love the taste of wine. I can't drink anymore wine starting on Saturday. I have two nights left to drink wine. Honestly, I pray to God that I can't drink wine for the next 9-10 months. But I am still going to miss it. I plan to try some NA wine. Let me know if you have tried any NA's that are good! Thanks.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

National Infertility Awareness Week

What an incredible week. Not just because we were on Oprah and got our photo with Oprah in the mail yesterday, but because of all the amazing support we have received from our family, friends and strangers. I have "met" so many more amazing women who are going through infertility. I am so thrilled that people are speaking out and trying to create more awareness. Because of all the new connections, I just found out that there is a National Infertility Association and that November 4 - 10 is National Infertility Awareness Week.

Time to brainstorm on how I can and will participate.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Did you all see this?


Wow, we are completely overwhelmed with the comments, response, support and well wishes we have received today. We wanted to create awareness and I think we got a good start with Oprah today.

Thank you to everyone for your comments, prayers, support and love.

Oh, and look at what arrived today!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Oprah show will air tomorrow

You can check out for the preview. The title of the show is "Lisa Ling Investigates: Wombs for Rent."

We should be on near the end of the show. Just don't know how they will edit it. Even if we aren't, I think it was a great show and very informative.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Morning with Oprah

Here is a recap of our morning on the Oprah show.

We got up at 3:30 am not really having slept at all. We got on the road by 4:30 and I couldn't believe all the traffic. We found the studio without any problems and paid $24 for parking. There was already a line outside the studio so we took our last sips of coffee and got in line. It was a long wait before we checked in and then they checked our bags and purses. We were ushered upstairs and they had us sit in chairs while TV screens played old Oprah episodes. We were exhausted, mentally and physically. We knew why we were there, we knew the show had to do with infertility to some point. Obviously not everyone in the crowd was related to infertility. The room was loud with a lot women talking about how they got tickets, how they called and waited for over 5 hours to get through and their new outfits. Jaime and I just starred at the wall.
Finally they announced that they were getting ready to take us to the studio but were going to call out some names first to get seated first. My name was the first called. The crowd gasped, how cool. We were ushered into the studio and a lady said, "are you the Hansons? Come this way." There was the stage, the 4 white leather seats that Oprah and the guests sit in, the front row was about 6 feet from the stage. Some of the seats had reserved signs and there were two with our names on them. Wow, we are going to be in the front row. We sat down and took everything in, the lights, the cameras, people running around, the screens with the title of the show "Lisa Ling Explores Wombs for Rent." Wow (too early for me to think of any other words), I said again, Lisa Ling will be here, I love Lisa. "Jaime and Tracey Hanson?" We were being called again, this time for personal mics. They took us off to the side to get mic'd and checked. After we sat again, one of the producers (the one I spoke to on Saturday) went through some housekeeping items, how to answer questions, not just yes or no but not long and windy. The couple next to us asked why we were there; "starting IVF" I told them. She told us that they tried for 5 years, were told it was medically impossible for them to get pregnant and they went ahead with IVF and got pregnant on the third try. They have a little girl, 4 years old, and are going to try again.
Another producer came out and got the crowd going. Cheering, practicing questions, answering other questions etc. Then Lisa Ling and a couple came on stage and took their seats. Wow, Lisa is so tiny and beautiful. Then came Oprah. Crowd stood and went crazy. She was beautiful. She had her hair down and curly and was wearing the coolest shoes I have ever seen. We sat right away, serious topic, not much fun and craziness. The show started with focus on this couple, Jennifer and Kendall, who could not have children but wanted to explore surrogacy. The cost in America can run up to $80,000 so they looked elsewhere and after searching they decided to go to India. Lisa decided to follow them on their journey. They had TV screens that showed the series. I'm not going to go deep into the topic because you will need to watch the show to get a real understanding of it all. Most of us were in tears. Jennifer and Kendall were amazing and so strong. Those women in India were amazing and so strong. After that series was over, they put Lisa, Jennifer and Kendall in the front row with us, took away two chairs and this tall beautiful woman came on stage and sat next to Oprah. Oprah introduced her at Alexis Stewart, Martha Stewart's daughter. She is trying to have a baby, using donor sperm, and talked about how expensive it is, what women have to do, IVF, the medications, tests etc.
After a break they brought out a table with all of her medications she takes (and I will be taking soon) including all the different kind of needles. This was very surreal, that is us, that is what we will be going. Oprah asked her good questions.
During the next break a producer came and gave Oprah some cards with our info, another couple's info etc. Oprah looked at us and confirmed who we were. Oh boy, this is it I thought, my heart started racing, and Jaime just took my hand and held onto it. Oprah started the next segment, with Alexis still on stage, talking about other couples going through infertility. First she talked to the couple on our right. They have been trying for many years, 6 rounds of IVF, still not pregnant. Then she said something to the effect of, "And the Hanson's, Jaime and Tracey Hanson took out another mortgage to pay for IVF, Tracey, 34 says they have been trying for over two years?" and she looked at me to confirm 2 years, Yes, I said, 2 years. And then I confirmed that we had taken out home equity loan to pay for IVF. Then she asked if we started yet, and I said that we were going to start with those injections in two weeks. Then it was kind of a blur, Alexis said something to me about injections and then Oprah said to Jennifer, "So Jen, what kind of advice do you have for Trac?" There was a little more conversation, Lisa said something to the couples. I can't remember! Then it was over. Everyone clapped.
Oprah asked us a couple more questions after the "show" and they kept running cameras etc. We had a little more discussion and Oprah left, then Lisa came and shook all our hands in the front telling us good luck. We sat down and more producers came out to have us sign more sheets. There was a Dr behind us from a clinic in Chicago, she started talking to me right away. They will be doing a study with new fertility medications staring in 2008. All medications, testing and IVF will be covered. She gave me her card and told me to call her if we aren't pregnant by then. Another woman and I exchanged cards. Then another producer came told us and the two other couples that talked to come with him. Um, OK, thinking there will be more stuff to sign. He ushers us to back stage where Oprah, Lisa Ling, Alexis Stewart, Jennifer and Kendall were hanging out. "Oprah wants pictures with all of you." Oprah comes up to me and give me a big side bear hug squeeze, Jaime says "am I included in this?" and she says, of course you are! and grabs Jaime, the photographer takes a bunch of shots. Lisa comes up to us again to wish us luck. I looked and Jennifer, who is beautiful by the way, and said, "thank you for sharing your story, it really meant a lot to me to see another perspective." We chatted a bit and were ushered out. As we were walking to our car many people stopped us and wished us luck, it's like we were celebrities. As much as it was exciting, it was exhausting. It was a lot to take in not only because it was Oprah but because of the subject matter.

Whew, done. I'm so tired!

My letter to Oprah

Let's face it, these next couple posts will be all about Oprah. Some people have asked me what I wrote to Oprah that got me on the show. So here is the email I sent last Thursday morning. I will post about our day on Oprah later.

I have brown eyes, my husband has blue. Our mothers tell us we were very active children and probably could have been labeled ADD. I would run away from my mom at the mall and run to the stage to dance for anyone that would watch. My husband was talking in full sentences at age 2. We both had long, string straight, white hair. He played on the chess team in high school, I was in theater. He plays violin, I play flute.. He plays volleyball, racquetball and mountain bikes, I ran cross country and track in high school, college and still actively run today. Can you imagine what our child will be like? Yeah, so do we, and we may never know.

My husband and I have been trying to have a child of our own. Someone who will represent the two of us. It's been over two years. We started slow and relaxed. After a year of trying the doctor said I had to wake up every morning to take and chart my temperature to make sure I was ovulating. Then started the tests; invasive and sometimes painful. Blood was drawn, more blood was drawn again, ultrasounds, a hysterosalpingogram (HSG), semen analysis, more pap smears, and then it was onto a specialist. He met with us, studied our charts and said, "I don’t understand why you aren't pregnant, lets try intrauterine insemination (IUI)." I had to start taking Clomiphene citrate (Clomid) which comes with side effects; dizziness, hot flashes, mood swings and headaches. More blood work, more ultrasounds, trigger shots that bruised my butt and then the IUI, which I describe as having sex with a catheter. Two tries, not pregnant. We were physically, emotionally and financially spent. We needed a break and took the summer off. We endured baptisms at church, family gatherings with children running around and many pregnancy announcements. We stayed pretty strong through it all but did have a couple breakdowns. One more IUI and another negative pregnancy test. I just don't understand how women get pregnant their first time trying, or not trying.

After much research and referrals we decided to make an appointment with a fertility clinic in Gurnee, IL (we live in Milwaukee, WI). An hour drive, more blood draws, another ultrasound an hour consultation with the Doctor, and a review of the success rates we decided to use this clinic. We are on the road to our first In vitro fertilization (IVF). But before we started we needed more tests done. More time off of work, another hour drive for blood work, lining tests, ultrasounds, a hysteroscopy and others I can't even remember. My husband also learned how to mix the medications and use the syringe for the injections he will have to give me, twice a day for at least 10 days. This is just a taste of what IVF includes.

Financially we had to take out a home equity loan to afford IVF because majority of insurance companies refuse to pay for infertility. Their claim? It's a lifestyle choice. Emotionally it has been rough. There are times I just break down crying for no reason and my husband just holds me. Fortunately it has not been a strain on our relationship. If anything, I have fallen in love with my husband all over again and more and more each day. He has been my rock.

My current fight is awareness. I'm not afraid to share my story. I blog about our infertility. Our family and close friends know what we are going through and I try to educate them as much as possible.
We may never have children or our own. But we are going to fight as hard as we can. Will we try donor sperm, donor eggs, donor embryos or adoption? Probably not at this point. But we have peace with our decision at this time in our lives.
But for now, bring on the medications, injections and lets pray this works.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

I met Oprah today!

Met her, got a hug and a picture with her. I sat in front row. She asked me questions; I will be on the show when it airs. Not sure on date yet. I'll tell entire story later. We've been up since 3:30 am and I need a nap.
I will also catch up on my 8 random things about me. Thanks Erin and Danica!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Congratulations Brett Favre (and Packers too!)

My favorite athlete of all time, Brett Favre, broke Dan Marino's record this weekend for the most career touchdowns passes. That's 422 touchdown passes to 43 different receivers.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

I'm going to Oprah!

Yesterday my friend sent me a link to the Oprah show asking people to give their infertility stories for an upcoming show. I decided to write about our journey and received a phone call this afternoon asking if we'd like to be in the audience for the taping this Tuesday! My husband said he wants to come with me. Guess who gets husband of the year. We have to be there at 7:00 am!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Infertility Insurance Petition

Please take time to read and if you feel moved to sign the Infertility Insurance Petition. It is sad that most insurance companies will not cover infertility treatments because they actually think it's a lifestyle choice; infertility is not a choice. If you have any questions please let me know.
Thank you for the time and your consideration

Infertility Insurance Petition

Monday, September 17, 2007

Proud to be an American

Maybe it's a corny title but I was very proud to be an American on Saturday night. Or maybe I should say proud of my fellow Americans.

We had tickets to attend the Brewers game on Saturday with some friends. Our tickets included passes to the .300 club. Considered an elegant dining room and upscale sports lounge the .300 club is in the left field corner of Miller Park. Seating in the dining room gives spectators a beautiful view of Miller Park. We decided to stop up there before the game to have a drink in the lounge. Packed close to capacity, we were able to grab a little bar table and some drinks without much of a wait. The TVs in the bar broadcasted the game because you can't see the field from parts of the lounge. No one was really paying any attention to the TVs and the bartenders were running around making drinks. Quietly we could hear the announcer say "please rise for the National Anthem" and that is where I was shocked. The bar and restaurant went silent. Everyone stopped their conversations to turn their attention to the field or TV, whichever was their better view. The bartenders stopped mid drink and turned their attention to the TVs. I had chills. It was nice to see the respect people still have for their country.

Oh, and by the way, people at Miller Park do not treat "Jump Around " like they do in Madison. Pretty sure we were the only people jumping around, like idiots, in our seats.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Writers Block

I know, I haven't written much lately. I guess it's kind of writers block. Everyday I think of posting something and then I can't think of anything interesting, informational, fun or exciting to post about. Lets see, what is going on?

It's cold. Summer has left. It feels like it may snow tonight. I do not like this weather at all. I don't mind fall, but I know that winter is just around the corner. I do not like winter. I despise winter. I do not like snow, the sight of it makes me cry. I know, I know, I'm in the wrong state. I'm kinda stuck here.

We are moving forward with IVF. I have a couple more tests to get through this month and it' looks like I will be starting the medications/hormones around October 1. Some days I'm excited to be moving forward and some days I experience different emotions of fear, sadness and anger.

Jenny Crain remains in critical condition. She was able to get through the jaw and neck surgery. She was taken off the ventilator and is breathing on her own but she is still unconscious.

My brother turns 21 next week. Wow, that makes me feel really old. I use to change his diapers, and now I can drink with him, legally. Also, congratulations to my bro, he auditioned for and was selected to be part of the Milwaukee Symphony Chorus. His first performance will be Bernstein: Chichester Psalms and Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 on November 30 – December 2 and a Holiday Pops concert on December 7 – 9. I can't wait to see him and hear him perform.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Back from the Island

I'm watching Federer play right now in the US Open but I just wanted to give a quick update.

We were at "our" place on Washington Island this weekend and had great time and are refreshed and relaxed. (I say our place cause really it's my in-laws place but I'm married into the place, right?)

How do people like THIS have children?

GO BADGERS! And sucks to be Michigan (College Football).

Jenny Crain has been improving. It's been a long week for her and her family. This is the latest from (search supportjennycrain). Please keep her in your prayers.

"Unexpected Surgery Signals Important, Though Modest Step Forward

Today Jenny had surgery on her jaw. The medical team decided to perform the surgery in Jenny’s room rather than have her moved to an operating room. They wired her jaw shut so the process of healing her mouth injuries can begin. Jenny has several teeth missing and faces many oral surgeries in her future. After the surgery the jaw is in good shape. During this procedure doctors did nothing with her cheek injuries or the damage to her the base of Jenny’s skull.

In another positive sign Jenny’s brain pressure levels stayed constant throughout the procedure. As we have indicated in pervious posts, equalizing her brain pressures are very important in her being able to safely tolerate other more intensive surgeries, like the vertebrae operation, which is tentatively scheduled for Tuesday September 4.

Jenny’s family also reported that she is blinking more with larger blinks and opening her eyes wider. Jenny remains highly sedated and in critical condition.

Overall, Saturday was a very good day in Jenny’s long road to recovery. Jenny needs many more days like today and with your prayers and support we can Make it Happen."

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Praying for Jenny Crain

Maybe you have seen the headlines already, "Olympic hopeful struck by car" or "Community rallies around injured runner." Jenny Crain, 39 of Milwaukee, is a very familiar name among local and national runners. I had the privilege of meeting Jenny and running with her back in 1996 at the University of Wisconsin Parkside. Jenny, who went to Franklin High School and Ohio University, called my Coach and asked if she could train with us. She was a wonderful addition and inspiration to all of us runners at UWP. The determination and her spirit inspired us all to be better runners. Jenny now lies in ICU with a swollen brain. All we can do is wait.

Jenny helped me qualify for a big race back in the spring of 1996. It was the outdoor track season and our coach had lined up some tough Division I races for us, but we had to qualify with some pretty tough times. We were trying to get to a race at the University of Tennessee – a great road trip. My chance to make it was in the 3000, not one of my specialty races. Our qualify race was in IL somewhere, I can't even remember. Jenny was with us and ran the 5k. My race was about an hour after. My teammate and I had to run 10:13 which was a big PR for the both of us. I was so nervous and not positive at all. We asked coach if Jenny could "rabbit" the race for us and get us on pace. She was so excited to help us. She set the pace for us and coached us throughout the race. I remember her saying, "come on, lets go" and "you are so strong, you can do this" and other encouraging words. She made the race so easy and we both ran our personal bests and qualified for the race in Tennessee. Jenny introduced me to Krispy Kreme donuts on that trip to Tennessee. I remember when she saw the sign, "fresh donuts" she yelled at coach to pull over and go through the drive through.

My last "run in" with Jenny was the Bastille Days run on 2006. I was warming up and ended up running next to her. I said, "Hey Jenny, not sure if you remember me" and she gave me a hug and said, "Of course I do Tracey, lets go do some strides."

That is Jenny. She is so positive and full of energy. She is always so fun to be around and just a strong, amazing woman. She has touched so many peoples lives. The running community is in a state of shock right now and we are pulling for her. People are praying so hard for her and her family and to guide the doctors that are taking care of her.

Come on Jenny, I know you can do it, lets go, you are so strong. Please pull through this. I know I will be running after you again someday!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Happy Anniversary to me! and other randomness.

3 years! Yay! I love my husband so much!

Haven't written in while so here is some randomness:

FINALLY good news. We found out last week that the medications for IVF which can cost up to $5000 will be covered by insurance. That is great news and may also give us enough money to try three rounds of IVF if needed.

This rain sucks! I know we need rain but day after day gets old.

Preseason football has started. This excites me beyond belief. Packers defense has looked good the last two games. What makes me more happy is that Michael Vick will most likely spend this season in jail.

Summer is almost over. Kids are going back to school, football season is starting and the trees in front of my condo are turning red already. I love fall but I hate what comes after - winter. Can't we just go Summer, fall, summer, fall??

I have been doing yoga at invivo wellness and I love it. I never thought I would enjoy yoga or have the patience for it but I feel so relaxed and fresh after I'm done. Invivo is the same place I go to for acupuncture, my chiropractor and physical therapist.

Have a good day!

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Gufs and BoDeans concert

My husband and I actually got out by ourselves this past Friday night to the Wisconsin State Fair to see The Gufs and BoDeans concert. If you are from the Wisconsin area you should know who they are.

The BoDeans formed in Waukesha, WI around 1984 and got their break by playing at Summerfest. They gained National attention when their song "Closer to Free" was selected as the theme song for the TV series Party of Five. My first BoDeans concert was in 1991.

The Gufs, formed by University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee students, started playing on the east side of Milwaukee in 1988. I was introduced to them, music and in person, in 1992. My fellow athletes from the University of Wisconsin Parkside played soccer against some of the band members and head them play on the east side. I became a groupie right away.

15 years later I still adore both groups. My husband also grew up listening to both bands. When we heard about the concert we bought tickets right away. I will say it was weird having to buy tickets when I have seen both bands for free in the past. But we did get great seats, fourth row center.

As we were walking to our seats I said to Jaime, "Why does everyone look so old?" He laughed and said, "because they are, and we are too." The Gufs only played for about 45 minutes because they were the "opening" band but I wanted more! They were great as usual and Goran is still so stinking cute.They played a lot of their new songs and of course ended their show with my favorite song, Smile. Then the BoDeans came on and I freaked out, Sammy has gray hair! But age was not a factor in their performance. Wow, they sounded great. They played all the best songs and my favorite, Naked.

After the concert I got my cheese on a stick which you have to get at the State Fair and we headed home. It was a nice and relaxing night.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

An invitation

I'm just throwing this out there. I have started singing with our Praise Team at our church and I love it. This Sunday I'm really excited, we are singing some of my favorite songs, my bro is singing with the Praise Team too, and there will be a baptism; not just any baptism, our Pastor will be baptizing his newest grandson. If you are interested join us at Brookfield Lutheran (Missouri Synod).
Brookfield Lutheran Church
18500 W. Burleigh
Brookfield, WI 53045

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Update on all that T-TTC stuff

We met with Dr. Sherbahn for our IVF consult on Monday. We started our testing to see if we qualify for the shared risk IVF program. If you qualify, you can pick an IVF "package" and have a guarantee live birth or your money back. I had mentioned earlier that we like this option (who wouldn't) and the success rate at this clinic is higher than any clinic in WI.
The appointment started with an ultra sound for me to check the ovarian antral follicle count. In the first 10 minutes of our appointment we knew we were a bust. I only had 11, they wanted 14. No shared risk for us. Oh, and by the way, looks like I have a cyst and maybe even endometriosis. They said it's probably from the clomid I took during our IUIs. What a blow. Dr. Sherbahn was a nice guy and answered every question we had and never rushed us out the door. We got all our answers, I gave three tubes of blood and they sent us home to think about out next steps. I cried all the way back to Milwaukee.
This morning we got another blow - my blood tests came back invalid. They tested my estrogen and FSH levels. The "day 3 FSH test" is done to test my ovarian reserve. I had these tests before and they were fine, not this time. The nurse called and said they were invalid because my estrogen levels were way too high and that automatically makes the FSH levels invalid. They said it was most likely from the clomid I was on last month and my cyst. I have to repeat the blood test (for another $200) next month.
We can still do IVF through all these problems but it lowers our success rate and our chance of getting a package deal.
How am I doing? Not sure I can cry anymore. Oh, wait, yes, I'm sure I can. I just keep telling myself that we can do IVF and there is still a 50/50 chance of getting pregnant using IVF. My husband is still so amazing, strong, positive and patient. I love him so much.
At this point, it looks like we will first be able to try IVF in October.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Time for me to quit running

I can't believe I just typed that.

First of all, sorry, it's been a week. It was a rough week, I'm not going to lie to you. Obviously we are not pregnant and are moving on to IVF. I have been filled with many different emotions. I'm scared to death of the process. I'm angry that we have to do this in order to have a baby. I'm excited that we are moving onto a new process that has a higher success rate. I'm freaked out by the money we have to come up with. And I have fallen in love with my husband even more because he is my strength and such an amazing man. Take all those feelings and the fact that I have cried for two days, I am emotionally and mentally spent.

After talking with my husband about our plan and feelings I told him that I think it's time for me to stop running. Some doctors and others have their opinions on the impact of running and trying to get pregnant. It's hard for me to accept because I know a lot of people that have gotten pregnant while they were training intensely. But every body is different right?

If we are going to fork over lots of money for this procedure, I want to make sure I am doing everything right. I'm going to start yoga as suggested by my acupuncturist. I will continue to lift weights. For cardio I will hit the pool and stationary bike. I may keep up with racquetball a bit too.

This is going to be a very hard change for me. I have been a "runner" since 5th grade. That puts me at running for about 22 years with some breaks in there of course for injury. I love it, I love to run. Not many people say that about running. It's my stress reliever. I feel so free and strong when I run.

But I think at this time in my life I am going have to give it up for awhile. I need to concentrate on my body and getting it ready to get pregnant, God willing.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I hate this, but lets talk money.

Here we are again talking about my wonderful infertility issues. Sorry. But I have to vent. We have been fortunate that our insurance has been covering 80% of all our tests and IUIs to this point. But now we have to move onto IVF and our insurance does not cover that. We are looking at two different clinics – Froedtert vs. Advanced Fertility Clinic of IL. We have using Froedtert for our IUI and we like them. They are one of the best hospital in the US. but their success numbers on IVF aren't as high as this clinic in Illinois. When it comes down to money, Froedtert is about $15,000 for one IVF. The Advanced Fertility Clinic has different payment options. One, for example, is you pay for three IVF rounds and there is a guarantee live birth or your money back. Sounds great right? Sure, with a price tag of about $25,000 that we have to pay upfront, if full, before we start.
At this point we are doing a lot of research on both locations, asking many questions, and inquiring input from others who have used both clinics. We have a consult with the Advanced Fertility Clinic (which will set us back $375 paid in full at time of appointment) in a couple weeks and we will meet with Froedtert again to discuss the next steps of IVF. My husband is currently researching the best way to finance IVF. Our plan was to use Capital One's health care finance option with a nice low rate of 1.9% APR but we found out that neither clinic will accept payment from Capital One because of the hidden fees they get hit with from Capital One.
So yesterday I went into very angry mode. I can get a boat loan from my bank at 6% but if I want a general health care loan I'm looking at 12% APR. I want to scream at insurance companies. I know people who smoke, are obese, don't exercise and just don't take care of themselves yet insurance is paying for all their health issues but I can't get any insurance if I want a baby? (Please, don't tell me to vote for Hillary and her idea of new health care because if that would be the case I wouldn't have the option of what clinic I could even to go.) Sure, we could lower our 401k investments, our IRA's and stop saving money for the hospital bills that we will accumulate when (and if) we have a baby, but that just drives me crazy. We pay a lot of money just to have health insurance and my husband's company pays outrageous money just for us to have insurance but the one time that I need it we don't get it. Or how about a trade off? You get $20,000 for fertility treatments, not limiting us to just IUIs. If that would be the case, we would have skipped IUIs and gone right to IVF. Why is it so limited? WHY CAN'T I GET ANY COVERAGE!
OK, I'm done. I just needed to vent about my frustration with insurance coverage, costs of infertility treatments and the fact that I will be on a mission to make more people aware this problem.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

My food world ups and downs

My food world
Yesterday was a sad day and a great day in my food network world.
Milwaukee lost it's beloved favorite restaurant critic, Dennis Getto at the young age of 57. Known as the faceless critic for 25 years, Getto not only reviewed restaurants but also provided his readers with insight to cooking, entertaining and where to dine. He was always quick to return phone calls and emails to his readers. Getto passed died from pulmonary fibrosis.

Paula Deen is coming to Chicago on Saturday, November 17 and guess who has tickets?! I am so freaking excited. I will be heading to Chicago with three of my girlfriends to see Paula's Live Tour. Known for her famous quote of "everything's better with a stick of butter" Paula has become an icon of cooking on the Food Network. I am so excited (did I say that yet) that I am going to hear her say "hey y'all" in person. I may cry.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Another great infertility article - Infertility Etiquette

Sorry that I am posting so much on this topic. I guess since we had our third IUI yesterday this is on my mind.

Here is a good article for family and friends who may know a loved one struggling with infertility.

Infertility Etiquette

Think twice before you ask a woman when they plan on having children

This is a great article that was on MSNBC - Newsweek:
My Turn: Stop Setting Alarms on My Biological Clock

Can you believe a woman actually said, "Well, you don't know happiness until you've had a baby."

Excuse me?

Since when does children = happiness? So if my husband and I can't have children we will never experience happiness? The day I married my husband I wasn't really happy? I'm really not happy during the times I spend with my family and friends?

This is just one part of the article that got my blood boiling.

It's a short quick read, take a look!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Smug mug account

My husband and I decided to purchase a smug mug account to host our photographs. We really liked the viewing quality and other features of the site. Go check it out!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Acupuncture take two

It's been a week since I have done an update. I felt pretty relaxed last week. There were a couple times when I started feeling anxiety and stress but I was able to concentrate on my breathing and feel calm and relaxed again.

We had a nice and busy weekend. Right after work on Friday we took off to the Wisconsin Dells for the "Waupaca" Boatride Volleyball Tournament. We stayed at the Chula Vista Resort and met up with a bunch of our friends. If you like volleyball I highly suggest this tournament - teams of three, grass, 472 teams ....Open, AA, A, BB and B. My husband and two of our other friends played in A's. It was fun to watch all the games, enjoy the sun and free beer! I even squeezed in a facial.

Sunday was busy - church, lunch with girlfriends and my nephew Ethan's 4 year old birthday party.

Today was my second acupuncture appointment. She concentrated on my stomach/uterus/female reproduction points and my knees. The needles were left in longer but I was very relaxed. She even rubbed a lavender/tangerine oil on my head. I started to concentrate on my breathing and thoughts of nothing and little by little my most stressed parts of my body started to go limp. After she took the needles out she rubbed out some tight spots on my legs and wrists and sent me on my way. Now I'm at home, on my couch with a glass of wine just relaxing away. I really like this acupuncture stuff. Tomorrow I get my ultra sound to see how the clomid worked and hopefully IUI #3 on Wednesday.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Acupuncture take one

I did it. Tonight I overcame one of my biggest fears of having many little needles sticking out of my body, or acupuncture. My husband was the first one to suggest acupuncture to me. His friends had problems getting pregnant and she tried acupuncture and she got pregnant within one month. I hate needles, hate them. It's not the pain, it's the feeling of having something in my body that does not belong. It's hard to describe. So needless to say I have been very hesitant. I have a physical therapist and chiropractor that I love at Invivo Wellness and they recently added acupuncture. I asked both of them about their opinion on it and of course they said, "do it." I met with Jennifer last Friday and we talked about our road to having a baby, my stress levels, other health issues etc. I liked her and felt very calm after leaving her, so I scheduled my first appointment for today.
I get there today a little nervous and Jennifer is just a very relaxing person. Tiny, skinny, quiet and her voice is just calming. She talked to me for about 30-45 minute on my health history, diet, exercise, fertility etc. She then gets me on the table and says, "OK here comes the needles." I just closed my eyes and took deep breathes. She put one in my head, my arms, hands, stomach, knees and ankles. At first I hated it. I was tensing up and I started feeling like I do when I give the blood. I thought to myself there is no way I'm ever doing this again. It's not like I could feel the needles at all but I knew they were there, make sense?
I started feeling sick and wanted them out. But I just took deep deep breathes and then I then I couldn't feel them. She reminds me to relax and she left the room. I tried so hard to think positive and relaxed and I even said a prayer. Next thing I knew my whole body went limp, it was heavy like. It was weird. I felt things moving in my body, like blood flow or something, my body was waking up but relaxed. It is so hard to describe.
She came back in and we talked about how I felt and she pulled out the needles. She lightly messaged my legs and arms talking to me about what muscles are connected to what organs and why she put the needles where she did. Everything she was saying made sense. I believe that everything is connected but at the same time it was weird, the whole Chinese Medicine theory. My heart started beating heavily, not fast just heavy and then i felt like I was on vicodin or something. It was awesome. I was in a whole other world. We talked about food/diet and I was waiting for her to tell me she was vegan or tell me that I need to detox my body and just do herbs but she said....just eat food, real food. Food is good. Stay away from the frozen dinners, fake sugars, no-fat stuff etc. Also she told me the number one thing to stay away from that is "media food" is soy. She said especially if you are trying to get pregnant. She gave me bunch of articles on it.
I got up and was so relaxed but not like I have ever felt. Different than a message. I still feel really good right now.
I go back next Monday.

Friday, July 06, 2007

3rd/4th of July

This is my favorite holiday. I love the summer weather, parades, cookouts and most of all the fireworks. I include the 3rd of July as part of the holiday because here in Milwaukee, WI we are given the opportunity to start the celebration of our country a day early with the spectacular US Bank Fireworks. Heading down to Milwaukee's beautiful lakefront for this grand display has been a family tradition for years. It started with my mom, dad and sister and has expanded to as many as 40 plus people. The past couple years it has been my responsibility to get the spot. You can show up at the last hour and hope to get some grass but thats not how I do it. I stated a couple years ago by going down around Noon, then 10 am, last year we marked off our spot the night before and came down at 8 am to add our chairs, tables etc. We noticed people were camping so this year my husband and I decided to camp in Veterans Park. Yes, thats right, camp in a park located in downtown Milwaukee. What's even funnier is that we live a half mile away from the park. We got down to the park about 4:30 pm on the 2nd. Set up our tent, marked off the spot and lit the grill. We had a great time and walked around and I got some great pictures of the fireworks all ready to go. We couldn't believe how many people made camping in the park a tradition. We got prime spots, right behind the fence that blocks off the spectators and the fireworks.
The next morning we ate breakfast, I ran home to feed the cat and grabbed some more food and water. We set up our volleyball nets and played volleyball with some friends that came down to join us. We watched the park fill up and also watched about three storms blow over the lake. Whew.
We packed up volleyball and more family and friends joined us. But at about 8:30 p.m. the sky turned black and it got very still...... then there was this ball of pink lightening that filled the sky, um, where those the fireworks? Nope, but like I said, God decided to start his show early. We were smart enough to keep our tent there so we started grabbing everyones bags, blankets and other items that needed to stay dry and threw them in the tent. We got out tarps and umbrellas and hoped for the best. We were not leaving. Everyone figured it would storm for about 30 minutes and it would take everyone that long just to get to their cars. It rained, the wind blew, it thundered and we had more pink lightening. About 45 minutes later it slowed down and the fireworks started. And it was worth it. We still had some rain and beautiful lightening but the fireworks were amazing and the show was about an hour long.
We all laughed at how soaked we were and how scared we were of the crazy lightening but we also said that the fireworks of 2007 will always be remembered because of it all. Unfortunately because of the rain I was unable to get pictures of the fireworks but I do have some before shots.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

I'm scared

If you have been following my story at all, we are on a two month break from using science in our hopes to having a baby. It's been a nice two months off. I haven't missed filling my body with hormones, getting ultra-sounds, giving blood etc. But now we have to get ready for another fill of reality......what's next? We will try one more IUI but it that doesn't work (we aren't optimistic) then we need to make a decision.....Are we ready to try IVF? Which doctor do we want to use? How are we going to pay for it? How are we going to get through it?
I'm trying so hard to put my faith in God to guide us through these decisions. I also I'm praying for strength because I'm finding myself in tears more often than I'd like.
I'll talk about this more (lucky you!) but I just need to get that down on "paper"..... I'm scared.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

More cool pictures from Maine

Lobster traps all over
Having fun with my new Nikon D80

The first sight of whales

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Lets talk about Maine

I could write tons, but I will try to keep it brief.
Why did you go to Maine, you ask? One of the sucky things from this past year is my dad's company got bought out by a larger one and he got laid off, after they made him fire all his tech associates. Nice hey? After many months of searching and interviews he was offered a job….in Maine. Many prayers and discussions later he decided it would be best for the family if he took it. His job allows him to work from home so he is able to come back to WI about once a month for a long weekend and my mom tries to get out there for a couple weeks at a time. He was fortunate enough to find a great apartment on the ocean in Old Orchard Beach, ME. I finally got some time off of work and decided to head out there when my mom was going to be there too. I left early on a Friday morning and landed in Boston at 10:30 a.m. Our first stop was Cambridge and visit Harvard University. Wow, what a gorgeous college. I felt really smart just standing in the middle of campus by the library. I bought a Harvard Track and Field t-shirt on campus just to pretend that I ran for the team. What I love about that side of the country is that it is so old, that is where the history of the United States began. After some gulf shrimp and Sam Adams beer we head north to my dads place. He lives in this cute little ocean side holiday town and I like to describe it. About a mile walk on the beach is The Pier where many shops and restaurants are located. Adjacent to The Pier is an amusement park. I felt like I was in a movie from the 80's, like Karate Kid. The next day we were going to Gloucester to whale watch. Gloucester is the setting of the movie Perfect Storm so that night my parents made me watch the movie. Have you seen the movie? If not, go rent it. I was afraid to watch it because I knew it was a sad movie and I knew the ending since it was a true story. I am so glad they made me watch it. The next day we headed south into Massachusetts and visited the two cities Rockport and Gloucester. The day was foggy and misty, perfect setting for a fisherman's town. We walked the streets of Rockport and this is where I got some of my best pictures. After filling up on coffee and clam chowder (chowdah as they say it) we headed to Gloucester. I had chills all over when we drove by the Crows Nest Inn (setting of Perfect Storm). Gloucester is the oldest fishing port dating to 1623. My dad booked us to go Whale Watching and I was so excited to test out my new camera. Still foggy and misty, we weren't sure what we were going to see out in the ocean. What I liked about the whale watching company we went with, "Captain Bill's & Sons Whale Watching", was that they had a field biologist and Director of the Whale Center of New England on board. He has been studying the Humpbacks in that particular region for 20+ years. It took about an hour to get to the spot where they know the whales come to eat. As we approached the spot we saw a whale slapping his tail in the water alerting other whales that he was coming into their territory. I was so excited because I knew we were going to see at least one whale. Not only did we see one whale but we saw two sets of three whales including one calf, three sets of two whales, including another calf and some random singles. At the end of the two hours a calf decided to play with our boat, he was swimming all around, splashing, blowing air, going under our boat and back up again. It was so amazing and beautiful. Finally the mom and her friend had to come back and get the calf, the calf didn't want to go so mommy had to jump on her. It was so surreal.
I will post more about my trip later........

Monday, June 25, 2007

My favorite nephews


Oh wait, what about this one?

Favorite picture

I was looking through my Maine pictures again and I think I have a favorite. And it's not even a whale picture. Ok, I cannot lie, it's not really just the only favorite but this is one I may blow up and frame. Let me know what you think.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


If I hear one more person say, "I'm pregnant" and then follow it with, "and we weren't even trying." I WILL puke on them.

That is all, have a nice day.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Random thoughts

For some reason I cried a lot yesterday on Father's Day. We are going on our second month of a break. It has been a nice break, I think I'm just scared of what the future is going to bring. More tests, needles, decisions, etc.

I love this weather, and it doesn't last long enough here in WI. June - September are wonderful months. After that we get snow and cold and more snow...... it sucks. Literally 4 months of good weather. I feel this crazy pressure to do things - camping, the Island, volleyball tournaments, cookouts, beach time, etc. 4 months to get all that in before it snows. Ugh.

My running is sucking right now. I feel so tired and heavy and slow on my runs. I have no desire to train right now.

I love my husband more than anything in the world. He is so cute. My poor cat is hot right now and he tried to cool her off this afternoon. He took ice packs and put them in a insulated bag and put a pan on top of it with my cat's favorite mouse hoping she would lay on the pan to keep cool. He is silly but cute.

Friends is my favorite TV show of all time, I'm on my 3rd episode of the night.

Yes yes yes, I will do a write up on Maine.

Thanks all, happy days.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I got a new camera and just got back from a mini vacation

Super quick update, I'll write more when I have a chance. My husband and I broke down and got the new Nikon D80 camera. We have been researching this particular camera for almost a year. My plan is to take some photography classes so I can master the camera. It arrived in the mail last Wednesday just in time for my mini vacation to the East Coast visiting my mom and dad. I took over 380 pictures; Harvard, the beach, whales, lighthouses, old buildings and much more. Here is just a tease of our whale watch.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Washington Island

I don't remember if I have ever posted about Washington Island. "The Island" is located north of the tip of Door County. My in-laws have a place up on the Island and my first visit was back in 2003. I fell in love with the place right away. There is nothing fancy about the Island. It's quite simple and a little behind the times. But that is what makes it so special. The in-laws have a beautiful house on the lake facing East. We spend a lot of our time up there helping them do work around the house. I love to mow the lawn and it's a great workout for me. I usually do it after a 5 mile run which I get to run in the middle of the streets because there is hardly any traffic. We also help plant flowers and bushes, take down trees, cut wood and burn. After our chores we have a "moment" with an Island Wheat Beer. Of course we also over eat with great meals done on the grill.
We "meet" a lot of different animals including large spiders, long snakes, deer, many different kind of birds, and much much more. Here is a picture of one of the biggest spiders I have ever seen outside of the zoo.My brother-in-law, my husband, father-in-law and I love to go to the driving range and see how good (bad) we are at golfing.
The boys hard at work and I'm planting flowers.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

It's my birthday Saturday - random thoughts

First of all, Happy Birthday to my sister Jenny. Today is her birthday. Growing up as kids my parents always celebrated our birthdays separately even though the days were only3 days apart . They wanted to make sure we felt our birthday was a really special day. We might have had our grandparents over for a weekend celebration, but on each of our birthdays we had our own cake, own presents and our special requested dinner.

I'm having dinner with four of my best friends tomorrow night. I am really looking forward to our time together. They are the best group of girls. I don't know what I would do without them. We chat throughout the day via email and experience all of our ups and downs together. They are my rock and my daily laughter.

We are thinking about selling our condo in downtown Milwaukee. Don't get me wrong, we love it and we love living downtown, but it's time to make the next big purchase. We have outgrown our place and we are looking forward to getting a house out West (not California West, Waukesha County West) We are going to take it slow at first, no hurry. But if you or if you know anyone that wants to buy a great 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom condo in downtown Milwaukee for under $200,000 let me know.

Oh yes, and children. Still don't have any and we won't anytime soon. Our second IUI did not work. It was a very emotional month for me. The hormones have taken over my body, so we have decided to take a month or two off. We want to be stress-free and I want to feel like myself this summer. Am I being a little selfish? Some people may think so, and thats ok. Until they do what I have been doing to my body they have no opinion.

I will be able to continue my blog this summer as being married without children, and thats not all that bad.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I have not been good at this

I have not been writing as much as I should. No excuse. I actually have been writing all my fertility experiences in a journal, I guess I could post some of those entries, but they may be boring.
My husband and I are very excited for summer. We were teased with 89 degrees yesterday, of course it didn't last. But it gives us hope.
The husband is still in school and finishing a class. He hopes to finish it by June 7th, the start of Jazz in the Park. He has 3 more papers. I don't miss school at all.
We are in two volleyball leagues this summer, that will keep us busy. The days we are not playing volleyball I am trying to squeeze in some runs.
We have decided it's time to try to sell our condo. We love it here in downtown Milwaukee, but it's time to move West and get a house. We will start casually and see what kind of bites we get.
We also decided to take a couple months off of fertility treatments. It was getting very emotionally and physically draining. I want to enjoy the summer and be myself!
Thats the latest.....

Thursday, April 26, 2007

It's almost summer in Milwaukee

Despite the rain and cold temperatures this week I am looking forward to summer in Milwaukee. I just looked up a couple of our favorite "festivals" in Milwaukee and I started to get excited.
Jazz in the Park starts on Thursday, June 7th. Have you ever gone? If not you must! Pack your own dinner or buy dinner when you get down there. There is nothing like sitting in a park in the middle of the city with your friends and family, enjoying some wine and great music. But before Jazz......Riversplash will take place June 1,2 and 3 this year. This festival is our official "Its finally summer in Milwaukee" festival. It's free, it's fun so come on down!
There there is Summerfest, 3rd of July fireworks, Germanfest, Festa Italiana, State Fair and so much more. I will try to get a calendar up and talk about all the different events! I'm so excited...... oh and the farmers market will open soon too!!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Dang it

Not pregnant this month. I'm ok, I thought I would be hysterical but I'm not. I think at this point in the game I have realized that this whole plan in in God's hands. We are depending on science in this whole process but ultimately, God is in control. So we are onto the next month. I am just not looking forward to all the hormones and needles!!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Celebrities that are or have dealt with fertility problems

I am so thankful to see more and more celebrities revealing that they have had problems with getting pregnant. I'm not thankful they had to experience the heartache of trying to have children; I am thankful that they are going public with their stories. They are in the spotlight and if they disucuss their fertility issues it creates more awareness of a large problem.
Some celebrities that have relvealed such problems:
Dixie Chicks
Trista and Ryan Sutter
Cindy Margolis
Courtney and David Arquette
Angela Bassett
Christie Brinkley
Jane Seymour
If you know any others, let me know!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Date night

My husband and I had a much needed date night this past Friday. He has wanted to go to the Daniel M Soref Planetarium for a while now and I have been craving sushi so we decided to combine both in one night. We had reservations at Izumis at 6:00 p.m. and were seated right away. We both ordered some wine and made our selections; Take sushi combination for me and a Godzilla roll for my husband. Izumis (I wanted to post their website but it's not running right now) is our favorite sushi restaurant in Milwaukee. We have always had great service and fantastic food for a good price. When I first met my husband he had never tried sushi. For the past 4 years he has been taking baby steps and he has come a long way. He enjoys Izumis because they have a nice variety of Japanese food. After dinner we headed towards the Milwaukee Public Museum (the Planetarium is attached to the museum). We got our tickets, popcorn and candy then headed to our seats. The "feature" was Wonders of the Universe. The first part of the show displayed what is currently visible in the Milwaukee sky. Then the feature takes the viewer in space through the eyes of the Hubble Space Telescope and explains how galaxies are formed and goes into detail about stars, the constellations, planets etc. I really learned a lot during this section of the feature. The show is only 45 minutes long and costs $8/adult. We will defiantly go back to see Stars of the Pharaohs and make a visit to the IMAX which is showing Roving Mars and the Deep Sea.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

not sure how to post this.....

I have posted about fertility problems earlier and I indicated that I wanted to share information, struggles, support systems for couples etc that are experiencing fertility problems. I just wanted to report that we are in the heart of it all. We will be trying an IUI soon. This is good though. It's nice to have options and to start trying something that will hopefully allow us to have our own children. Science is amazing. I wish my science teacher from 11th grade could hear me say that. Again, I don't want to get into too much detail but I still feel this is something to be talked about, shared with others. Our doctor told us that 1 in every 6 couples will experience some kind of fertility problems. 1 in ever 6! Why don't we hear about it until we are that 1 in 6?
Anyway, I just wanted to post an update. If anyone has questions or wants to talk about everything we are going through let me know. Believe me, I have searched out many people asking them questions.

Spa day at Spargo

I was able to spend a wonderful morning and afternoon at the Spargo Salon in Pewaukee, WI this past Saturday. It was a much needed relaxation day after a very hard last couple months at work which included 30 hours of overtime in two weeks. I arrived at Spargo at 8:30 and was escorted down to the locker rooms to change into my most comfortable robe and slippers. As I waited for my facial one of my girlfriends arrived with the muffins, mimosas and gossip magazines. We toasted to a wonderful day and I was called off to my first treatment. My facial was so fantastic. Between the different masks they applied to my face they treated me with a hand message and a foot message. When I was done I went back into the waiting room and sipped some of my mimosa. Next was my 1 hour message. Heaven. Pure heaven. How else do I describe it. Once we were all done, we showered in wonderful Aveda products got dressed and we darted off to Jose's Blue Sombrero for lunch. We had a great time stuffing our faces and sipping on margaritas.
What a wonderful day!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

It has been too long, I'm sorry

My job took over my life the last 3 months. I planned a large event (Women's Conference) that ate up all my free time. But it is now over and it was successful. I could brag about it and go into detail but I don't want to think about it right now.
So I will get back to writing, complaining, informing and just blogging.
Happy Spring!

Oh and I have a girl's spa day this Saturday at Spargo and will report back after my day of relaxation!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

It's cold out

Has anyone else noticed how cold it is outside? Oh, sure, it's warmed up from -20, wind chill -35 to -1, wind chill -2. That's a heat wave. UGH! I can't stand this weather. Anyone else?

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


It's my mom's birthday. Shout out to mom.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Fertility Issues

I use to think that it was easy to get pregnant. But I was wrong. I have discovered that there are a lot of couples who have or are having fertility problems. So why don't we hear about it more publicly? Is it such a private issue that people don't walk to talk about it? If so, why? Why are fertility problems any different that cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease, menopause or any other disease?
Yes, we are trying to have children, no we aren't going to go into details. But I will say this, it was almost a relief to find out that so many other couples are struggling to have children. It would be nice to talk these people and find out what they have done to be successful. I also think a support system would be helpful as we and others struggle though the roadblocks set before us. I will address these and other fertility issues in the future. Please, feel free to share.