Posts tagged ‘infertility’

October 21, 2011

random thoughts for a friday morning

~this is my first and only post for this week.  i am lagging behind in several areas; we’re also going through a stressful time and some days i feel like i am furiously treading water just barely keeping my chin above the surface.  i have had posts lined up but lacked the time or energy to write them out and publish.

~i feel like socializing about as much as i feel like writing.  i have one more social obligation lined up for this  year, and then i plan to drop off the face of the earth until january at which time i will come up for air.  hopefully.

~today is my husband’s birthday.  he is younger than i am but other than that we can never remember how old we are.  birthday traditions here include a dinner of your choice usually prepared together while listening to jazz.  since my husband is in meetings all day and his dinner of choice is an all day thing, i am going to make it for him: spare ribs braised with red onion, bacon, and guiness; mashed potatoes, and boston cream cupcakes.

~our first hard frost (or last depending on how you look at it) was  yesterday morning.  my beautiful wedding white zinnias are finished for the year.

~i am in the process of deep cleaning my house.  it takes more time than one would think.  by the time i am finally finished it will be time to start all over again.

~redbook has launched a publicity campaign for infertility called “the truth about trying”.  when i discovered it, i stood on my chair and applauded.  you can see it here.

September 28, 2011

…on hopes and dreams

thought for the day (snagged from a friend on pinterest): do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not: but remember that what you  now have was once among the things you only  hoped for.

as my husband and i continue to work our way through the unknown i’m reminded of another similar time in my life some fifteen, twenty years ago.

our little house sits very prominently on a hill, one of about four or five very stately little houses all in a row, and the dormer windows and rooftops can be seen from the highway down below.  years ago, from time to time, i would pass by on the highway.  lonely, and unmarried, i wondered if i would ever have my heart’s desire: a soul mate and a home of my own – an older home that we’d fix up together.  i can recall looking up, seeing those darling little dormers and wondering about that house.  who lived there?  how  did it came to be there overlooking i-244 and yet still looking so elegant and so pretty.

who knew that i was viewing my future home, the older, fixer-upper i would later inhabit with the love of my life.  who knew that spot would one day become my happy haven as we labored together to restore that home.

these next few weeks as i pass through the still unsettled nursery?/office? and wonder what will become of it i need to remember those afternoons on the highway, peering over at those beautiful dormer windows; unaware i was actually looking at the happy ending of my then dilemma.

we may/may not get exactly what we’re hoping for, but i’m convinced that what we do receive will be incredibly good.

September 12, 2011

it’s the little things

in spite of having to drop off the love of my life at the airport for week one of a two week business trip (having been told he’d only be making one trip this month)…

in spite of having to take a hurt doggie into the vet this afternoon to have his toenail removed (having carefully planned and choreographed my day in order to deal with the love of my life being gone this week)…

in spite of sitting in the middle of a very dirty house (hence the carefully planned day to whip this place back into shape)…

in spite of being in the middle of a raging fiery trial (thereby facing all sorts of unknowns)…

in spite of having to eat my hard boiled eggs this morning without any butter, toast, or jam (nothing like a fiery trial i’ll admit, but it comes pretty close)…

it’s the little things that make this monday morning in september worthwhile.

little things like:

powering through what started out as a very difficult run, turning down my favorite stretch of old houses and sidewalk, finding a second wind, and discovering what a gorgeous morning it really is…

happy lyrics in my earbuds telling me to go make an earthquake…

the buds on fall blooming irises that i didn’t even know i had planted…

beet sprouts…

the first tiny green tomato in our fall tomato patch…

discovering that the african violet i propagated “took” and  is putting out tiny new leaves…

being able to resume my morning ritual of opening the interior shutters to let in the sunlight because the horrible summer  heat has finally broken…

a cup of black current tea in my flowerdy tea cup…

the anticipation of a new sewing project…

remembering the numerous times the love of my life has reminded me this past week that everything is going to be all right…

happy monday ya’ll!

August 25, 2011

lagging behind…

i had a few other posts lined up for this week including one on fall gardening.  truth be told, i’m lagging behind and may not get it out.  partly because it is still very hot – too hot to set anything out yet; and partly because i am under the weather at the moment (no pun intended).  i’m just not at the top of my game and it may be a week or so before i’m back into the full swing of things.  i’ve had to prioritize and when i only have enough energy to either fix dinner or write something thoughtful, i fix dinner.

not to say i won’t be posting, just that i may not be posting anything of any great significance.

all that being said i leave you with one of my favorite john denver songs and one i’ve listened to a lot recently as it seems to fit where we are at right now.

happy thursday!

sweet surrender

lost and alone on some forgotten highway
traveled by many, remembered by few
lookin’ for something that i can believe in
lookin’ for something that i’d like to do with my life

there’s nothin’ behind me and nothin’ that ties me
to somethin’ that might have been true yesterday
tomorrow is open; right now it seems to be more
than enough to just be here today

and i don’t know what the future is holdin’ in store
 i don’t know where i’m goin’, i’m not sure where i’ve been
there’s a Spirit that guides me, a light that shines for me
my life is worth the livin’, i don’t need to see the end

sweet, sweet surrender
live, live without care
like a fish in the water
like a bird in the air

sweet, sweet surrender
live, live without care
like a fish in the water
like a bird in the air

August 22, 2011

movie buff

saturday night my husband and i decided to go see a movie in an actual theater while the movie was still considered “hot” and very  much talked about.  if there is something we really want to see we typically wait until it makes its way to dvd. we then get it through netflix and watch it at home on our laptop in the comfort of our living room propped up on the sofa.   usually it takes us a while to get around to seeing things that are relevant – by the time we watch relevant films, society is through talking about them and has moved on to something else.  case in point: we just saw “the king’s speech” last friday night for the very first time.  we’ve only recently discussed that perhaps we should rent harry potter sometime and see what all that is about.  now, lest anyone think we are totally out of it, in my defense, i would like to say that we spend a good amount of time watching nitpicky, educational documentaries that do make us very interesting people (in certain circles).   i may not know a whole lot about harry potter, but i can tell you exactly how some of george bananchine’s muses felt about dancing for him, and how tupperware came to be sold at house parties.

back to the relevant movies….

last fall (?? i think it was?) i read the help.  i loved it.  it was the best book i have read in a very long time.  it was one of those books that was so good, i put everything on hold until i had a chance to finish it.  when i learned that it was to be made into a movie, i told my husband i wanted to see it.  right away.  in a theater.  just like everyone else. so i could talk about it just like everyone else.  so saturday we hit the matinee.

this post is not a review of the film.  you can read those elsewhere.  i would recommend though, that you read the book first, as the book, in my honest opinion, is far superior to the movie.  if you put the laundry and cooking aside to read it like i did, it won’t take long to get through it and you can still go see the movie while it is big stuff.

this post is about how i was reminded of why we do things the way we do.  why we wait until the movie is available on dvd and watch it at home, just the two of us.

as i said, we decided to catch a matinee showing.  not only is a matinee less expensive, there are fewer noisy people in the theater to contend with.  or so we thought.  unfortunately, several other people had the same idea for a saturday afternoon, enough people to fill nearly every seat of the theater.  people who eat popcorn, slurp drinks, rattle candy wrappers, forget to turn off their phones, and laugh in all the wrong places.  i sat next to a gangly youth who was obviously dragged along and only there because he had to be.  i don’t think he’d read the book.  i endured his popcorn eating for forty-five minutes only to listen to forty-five minutes more of him slowly digesting his bottled drink.

then there was the movie itself.  my husband and i decided that we will in fact rent this later anyway because we missed half the lines.  not so much because of the hungry youth beside me but because we were so enamored with the scenery we forgot to listen.  i’m not talking about oceans and mountains, i’m talking about glorious old plantation houses and a beautiful mid-century  modern ranch style.  i’m talking about vintage drainboard sinks, yards of beadboard, an incredible old stove, woodwork painted robin’s egg blue, and kitchen cupboards with layers of cracked paint and exposed hinges.  every other scene my husband and i would turn to each other pop-eyed and exclaim “oooohh! did you see that!?” “look at the pine cabinets!!”  then something important or funny would happen and we would miss it.  there was no opportunity to hit pause, discuss the way the kitchen was laid out, and then resume the film.

then of course there was the food “scenery” that only a foodie would catch and truly appreciate.  fried chicken made with crisco in a cast iron skillet and all those vintage goodies shown in my mother’s old betty crocker cookbook: sunshine jello salad, ambrosia, deviled eggs served with pickles, fluted orange cups, and chicken salad with white grapes.   i’m not one for lots of corresponding merchandise but i did come away thinking it would be cool if there was a cookbook from “the help” offered later.  minus of course a recipe for the chocolate pie.

perhaps i was just starving because our dinner afterwards at a pub (reminiscent of places we visited on our honeymoon) was the highlight of our afternoon.

missed moments aside the movie was very good and worth seeing.  the scene portraying celia foote planting her memorial rose bush was a poignant one for both of us, and one that hit very close to home.

we eagerly anticipate the dvd release so we can find out what it was everyone was laughing at while we were ogling over those blue chintz curtains.

August 15, 2011

the *conclusion* of the two rooms project

actually the two rooms project was originally titled “the project of the two rooms” but to say “the conclusion of the project of the two rooms” was too much of a mouthful…

anyhow.  i got it done for the most part.  there are still a few areas that need to be tweaked here and there and we really can’t fully finish these out for several months yet but for now, the two rooms are at least functional and no longer an embarrassing disorganized mess.

so here is the before shot of the room off of the garden:

and here it is “after”…

i will agree that there is not a significant difference but i can assure you that it is decluttered and therefore that much easier to keep clean.  the box on the chaise goes to goodwill.  i’m still working on that…

i had a brilliant thought the other day and decided that if we remain a family of two i will make this a morning room like the one in du maurier’s rebecca.  it was the room where mrs. de winter spent every morning planning dinner and opening the mail.  it was, aside from rebecca’s, the loveliest room in the whole house.  i’ve always wanted a morning room and this would be perfect.

on to the closet…

my (yoga mat and my) dandy collapsible sewing table.  i will show you that and how it works in another post at another time.

above i have sewing and craft supplies stored:

and opposite, seasonal decorations, my duck family (which i currently have no place for but absolutely love and therefore cannot yet part with), and my fabric.

i haven’t shown you a below shot because my wedding gown is still hanging there.  i need to find a place to have it restored.

here is a shot of the office?/nursery? before:

and here it is now:

pretty empty and empty it will stay for a bit until we see the lay of the land.  i’m thinking now though that if it isn’t an nursery? i my bring in my grow lights, and my settee.  as you can see this is a very fluid project and i change my mind a lot.

so there you have it.

my next up and coming project is to fully stock and organize my pantry.

for now though, i leave you with a little addition to my kitchen:

…a brass towel rack. the towel says “bon appetite ya’ll.  nope i didn’t misspell appetit.  it says appetite.

and yes those are dirty dishes in my sink.

happy  monday!

August 8, 2011

this and that…

it’s monday!  but i’m happy this morning because my husband is home and will be home for two weeks this month.  not two consecutive weeks, but two weeks nevertheless.  today will be a normal day for us  although we have gotten off to a bit of a late start having stayed up last night watching the x-files.  we’re right in the middle of season five, just in case you wanted to know.  my two mile walk (run for him) underway, i’m looking forward to laundry and tidying up from the weekend.

today i also plan to close out the project of the two rooms.  it has taken a bit longer than i anticipated.  i took a bit of a break in there to help out with our yard work but it is about finished.  the rooms have yet to be painted but we can’t really do that until next year when we have a better idea of what our family situation is going to look like.  we’d still jump at the chance to have the office?/nursery?  become a nursery!  but i’ve been doing lots of reading and research on childfree living as a family of two just in case the office?/nursery? becomes an office (note the absence of italics and exclamation point).  ya know though, as tough as it might be to experience the unthinkable, i’m finding that it could be doable and  i’m pleasantly surprised to find that i am at peace with the matter.  at least for today.

our garden has all but bit the dust.  we’re in the middle of the worst summer we’ve seen in over thirty years with over a month’s worth of temperatures in the triple digits.  last week i realized that i was heavily watering but nothing was producing and therefore it just wasn’t worth it.   we yanked out the last of the summer tomatoes and tossed them into the compost bin.   i’m still planning for a fall garden i just don’t know when it will go in.  the heat is not giving any sign of letting up. it is all rather discouraging.  no heirloom tomatoes this year, no zucchini, and no pole beans.  i even lost my sunflowers.  the few ornamentals that are left are bleached by the sun and not very pretty to look at.  no point in keeping them but i just don’t have the heart  yet to pitch them into the compost bin as well.

i’ve decided to take up sewing again.  i had quit after a disastrous project last year.  i’m not quite sure what gave me the incentive to reconsider but i did, and while the results have not been perfect i’m finding my way back to sewing items for my wardrobe.  maybe.   i think i have figured out the pattern sizing mystery, and i’ve found some styles and patterns i like.  i also discovered and bought a dandy sewing table that folds up out of the way when not in use and i’m currently shopping around for a used serger.

last week i sat down and sketched out some further ideas for blog posts.  i am going to try a regular book review column.  i posted my first last week,  but don’t expect to see anything else soon.  i’m wading through a 600 page (in tiny print) historical fiction right now and don’t see that i’ll have it completed before september.  i do though want to review my collection of cookbooks, feature some recipes from my grandma mabel’s kitchen, continue the mrs. beeton column (which was never meant to be taken seriously ya’ll), and organize some random favorite links into a series of posts called “snippets”.

stay tuned and have a lovely week.



June 26, 2011

remembering seven years ago today…

*reader beware: long sentimental post*

someone once said that upon remembering  a significant event, if the tiny details were the things that stood out the most, then the event was a happy one.  my wedding was a very happy event – i have absolutely no recollection of taking my vows. i had put so much time into researching the wording before deciding on the very traditional: “i jennifer christen, take thee marco luigi…to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, to love and to cherish till death do us part.”  i thought the words were so beautiful just as they had been written hundreds of years ago, i didn’t see any need to update them.  then, reflecting upon my wedding a week afterward, i didn’t even remember having said them.  i did, and still do, remember many of the tiny seemingly insignificant details however, that made up that lovely june day.

~ i remember waking up around 2am and telling myself before going back to sleep “today is my wedding day…”

~ the weather was lovely.  the heat had broken just for the weekend and we had beautiful spring like weather for about 48 hours.

~ my mother insisted on one last family breakfast together before my dad drove me to the church.  i opened a wedding gift from my sister and took a phone call from a well-wishing family friend who also had a question about the finger sandwiches for the afternoon high-tea reception.

~ i remember the drive to the church.  it was just me and my dad.  i don’t remember what we talked about, i just remember the drive and the sunny morning.  i remember he pulled up to the main entrance of the church and helped unload my overnight case from the trunk.

~ one of the first things i saw upon arriving at the church: my childhood friend happily putting the finishing touches on the silk rose and stephanotis petals we had scattered down the aisle.

~ when i got my hair done, i realized i was wearing a t-shirt that i couldn’t change out of without messing the up-do.  my friend and i switched outfits in the church kitchen.  she wore my t-shirt and i wore her vintage dress with a spin out skirt.

~passing through the sanctuary for one reason or another, i recall hearing marco’s voice on the other side of a door.  he sounded happy.

~ i got dressed about three hours or so before walking down the aisle.  it was then i started to get very nervous.  as tradition dictated, i was helped into my dress by my brides maids, but i also wanted my mother there and my littlest sister. littlest sister could not be found.  i panicked.  interestingly enough, four years later at my sister’s wedding this same little sister went awol when it was time to dress the bride.

~ i remember taking my ivory roses, stephanotis, and lily of the valley bouquet out of the florist’s box.

~ i remember standing in the three way mirror and thinking “this is exactly  how i always wanted to look on my wedding day.”

~ i remember holding my ear to the door to listen to “jerusalem” before the bridesmaids started down the aisle.

~ i remember a wedding coordinator who was a force to be reckoned with.  she had told me that i would have a moment before going down the aisle.  i would stand in the foyer, catch my breath, and she would fluff my dress.  then i would start my last walk as miss kuney.  i’m not sure why but this didn’t happen.  i don’t recall seeing the coordinator at all before starting down the aisle.  i do remember the door to the bride’s room opening and seeing a friend holding her little girl across the hall.  she saw me and began to cry.

~ the organ started mouret’s “rondeau” before i was quite ready but i went ahead anyway.  i stood at the door to the sanctuary, took my dad’s arm, and thought “this is it…..” i tried to take it all in.  then i started to cry.

~ i remember thinking i should have practiced walking in my dress at home because the train was. soooo. heavy.

~ i passed by a dear friend who was teary eyed.  i passed by another friend who mouthed “i love you”.  i remember seeing my mom.  the church suddenly felt very small.  i remember the tulle and the yellow light from all the candles.

~ i remember pulling back my veil to kiss my dad goodbye, then i took marco’s hand before going up to the altar.  i was shaking.  everything then became a blur.  my feet started to hurt and i realized i didn’t put two and two together when planning the ceremony: if one wants a long formal ceremony one is going to have to stand through it.  i was grateful i had the presence of mind to switch out my original high heels (which i never wear) for a pair of ballet flats (which i always wear).

~ i do recall the pastor’s charge and he told us to “pray the biggest prayers you can think of to pray….” throughout our marriage.  who knew that just eighteen months (or so) later we would begin our journey through long term primary infertility.  this and the verse read just before we were pronounced man and wife “now unto Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think” were to become very significant over the next several years.

~ i remember being introduced as mr. and mrs. marco cazzola.  the organ began the “tocatta” and i cried again.  all the way back down the aisle.

~ one little flower girl fell asleep at the altar in a perfect ivory tulle poof.  she remained there after the recessional and had to be carried off.  it was priceless.

~ i don’t remember having much to eat at the reception but i remember cutting the cake with the same knife my grandmother used to cut her wedding cake, and that at some point someone handed me a much needed cup of hot tea.

~ we had ordered a horse drawn carriage to take us from the church reception to our car.  as we waited in the foyer to make our exit, my mom came back for a tearful goodbye.  it had just hit her she said, that i was married and actually leaving home.

~ as we left the church to get into the carriage we had doves released from wicker baskets on either side of the doorway.  it was a supremely perfect cinderella-fairytale-moment.


June 13, 2011

the project of the two rooms

last week i mentioned here a project that i would like to work on over the summer now that we have completed our kitchen.  i set aside one full day to conquer the scary closet and within two hours, i had most things cleared out, and sorted through.  i was too busy (ok i admit the truth: i was too ashamed) to take any before pictures but here are some after shots.

i still have some clothing that needs to be sorted but the shelf above is organized and here is the other half:

entirely empty, rid of the holiday decorations that were taken upstairs to the attic, and ready to house my craft and sewing supplies.  this was quite an accomplishment.

the next step is to begin de cluttering and decide what will occupy this empty space.  if you recall from the story of our house, the room off of our kitchen was divided in two to make space for a separate laundry room.

so here is the laundry room:

and we pass through the doorway

into this little room (moving around in a clockwise direction):

east wall with the desk and art cart,

south facing window,

doggie beds on the west side,

and on the north wall, a very old dresser i spray painted, but painted horribly.  i don’t paint furniture anymore.

this is what needs to be decluttered.  this little room is in limbo right now.  it was to have been the nursery when we were planning to adopt.  should things work out the way we hope this fall or thereabouts (ish) we may still be on for a nursery.  if it becomes a nursery the walls will be painted bunny rabbit brown and hung with beatrix potter wallpaper.  if things do not work out as we hope jenny will toss back a few pomegranate martinis, take a deep breath, pull it together,  and this will become a very nice office for the lady of the house (me).  if it becomes an office, the walls will be painted crimson.  either way the popcorn ceiling needs to be removed and the light fixture needs to be replaced and centered properly, something the former homeowner failed to do when splitting the room in two.

it also needs new drapes.  even though this little room is in a state of limbo i have decided to go ahead and bring in/rearrange the furniture for the office scenario.  the rocking chair obviously was for the nursery scenario and given to us specifically for that purpose.  i’m not sure what to do with it.  it…..sort of bothers me but it has sentimental value so i don’t want to put it away.

this room, much like the den closet has scared me because of the debris that accumulated with the kitchen remodel.  debris that includes a lone stock pot that i need but have no place to put.  the desk will stay in this room, as well as the doggie gear.  in will come a white shabby chic mirrored dresser to hold gardening supplies.

  i am also toying with the idea of bringing the grow lights in here as well.

the contents of the dresser will be downsized, and the dresser will be given away.

the messy craft cart will also be downsized and moved to occupy part of the blank space in the newly cleaned out closet.

moved to the den closet because this room…….has no closet.  well not much of one as you can see.

someone at some point thought it would be a grand idea to house the furnace and hot water heater in here.  so here it is.   there is small space however to convert this into a “broom closet” of sorts so that is the plan.  that is the plan even if this becomes a nursery because i’ve nowhere else to store the broom and mop bucket.  yes, that is odd to have in a nursery but we plan to keep the door closed. no one will ever know.

because this project is so big (in my opinion) and this room is such a mess (i’m sure you share my opinion there) i’ve decided to break it down into baby steps.

step 1: downsize the art cart.

now, my husband is home this week so my priorities are a little different and i may or may  not be able get it done, but i will keep you posted.

June 10, 2011

confessions for a friday morning…

* yesterday i hurried up to finish the housework so i could sit down and finish a  movie.  the movie was a historical drama so of course, i knew the end (anne boleyn was beheaded) but i had to see the end all the same.

*the fact that poor anne lost her head because she could not produce an heir is very unsettling. it makes me grateful not to be a queen during the tudor era.

*today there was only a 20% chance of rain.  but it rained.  this little something, coming on the heels of a long awaited phone call that brought some good news has given me a peace that i have not felt in a long time.

*being the super wife that i am who is always fully aware of her husband’s schedule and all his busy comings and goings was totally unaware that he will not be traveling next week.  i have not stocked up on groceries and i have not planned any meals.

*i am a plant junkie.  i needed just one little plant to replace a penta that did not make it through our crazy weather transition from cold to very hot in less than a week. when i went shopping for the one replacement  i came home with three.  in addition to the replacement penta the other two were lantanas.  i bought a red one at a little nursery down the street.  then i went to lowe’s and saw a white one.  i decided i needed that one too.

*yesterday i made mocha chip ice cream from scratch.  having tasted the homemade i don’t think i can ever go back to the other stuff.

*tonight is date night.  we’re having a lovely mushroom risotto.