Monday, April 30, 2012

snow patrol

tuesday night, matt and i had tickets to see snow patrol at the electric factory.  snow patrol is one of my favorite bands and plays one of my favorite songs, "chasing cars," which also just happened to be our wedding song.  i saw snow patrol a few years ago (also at the electric factory) and the show was great.  i had gone with a coworker friend of mine who was also a huge snow patrol fan (and who was also considering using chasing cars for her wedding song).  unfortunately, we both changed jobs and kind of lost touch with each other, but this time matt wanted to come, so it worked out.

the electric factory is a pretty cool venue.  it's basically like a big warehouse.  when you first walk in, there is just a big open floor, with a few cocktail tables set up near the bar (but no seats).  off to the right is a flight of steps that takes you to the balcony.  on the balcony are 2 more bars and a bunch of stools that line the railing.  our goal was to get in line early so that we could get upstairs and score some seats.  we did (not without being practically run over by some asshat behind us that i wanted to punch in the throat because he literally almost knocked me over) and we were right along the railing with a perfect view of the stage.  the other nice thing about our seats is that i could use the railing to steady my camera when taking pictures.  i always turn my flash off in concerts but then my pictures are often kind of blurry because it is physically impossible for me to hold my hand steady.  with the railing there as support, i was able to get some really nice, clean pictures.

the opener for the show was this guy called ed sheeran.  i'd never heard of him, but holy shit, he was amazing.  he was just one guy with a loop machine.  so basically, he'd play a bass line, then start looping.  then he'd play a rhythm on the guitar and start looping that.  then he'd play another rhythm and start looping that.  then he'd do some beatbox and loop that.  and so and so forth until it sounded like there were 12 people/instruments on the stage.  not only that, but he had a great voice, to boot.  and he's one of these guys who can sing so quickly that it sounds i don't know what.  he was incredible.  i'm not sure, though, how it would translate into a studio album, which is why i still haven't downloaded anything.  here's a video i took.  the quality's not that great, but you get the gist.  check out this video to see him in action, though.

snow patrol came on around 9pm.  i don't know if he's changed and opened up or if i just didn't remember, but gary lightbody was really funny!  he was joking with the audience and really interacting with the crowd.  i love when bands do that because it makes you feel like a part of the show and makes you feel more invested.  what i also loved about snow patrol was that they had fun up there.  and gary lightbody was very appreciative of the success they've had, and he was so genuine and thoughtful about it.  you know, so many times artists are like "thanks for coming out" and that's kind of it.  gary must have thanked the crowd about a hundred times and not just for coming to the show but for being fans and for giving them the opportunity to reach the level of success they've reached.  it was really cool.  anyway.  they played a lot of my favorite snow patrol songs, and then played quite a bit off the new album, which i actually hadn't downloaded yet.  i often don't like when bands play all new stuff because i don't know it and i lose interest, but i was really caught up with everything in this show.  all the new songs were fantastic, and made me run home and download the album that night before i went to bed.  i've listened to it nonstop since then.  gary said during the show that he thought it was their best album yet and i would definitely have to agree.  the song writing is beautiful and every song has a lot of depth to it, lyrically and musically.

here's the set list for the show:
berlin (remix) - i'll never let go - take back the city - hands open - this isn't everything you are - run - in the end - crack the shutters - the garden rules - new york - make this go on forever - shut your eyes - chasing cars - chocolate - called out in the dark - fallen empires - you're all i have // encore: lifening - open your eyes - just say yes
it was excellent.  i bawled during "chasing cars" because the song is so beautiful and holds so much meaning for me.  i cried again during "lifening," which is a new song but they lyrics were so moving.  the girl standing next to me was also crying.  bunch of saps, we are!  here are a few pictures and video i took.

if you ever get the opportunity to see snow patrol, i definitely recommend it.  it was a really good show and especially with ed sheeran opening, i can almost guarantee you'll have fun!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

bbt spike

my bbt spiked this morning from a steady post-o temp of 97.7 to 98.2.  of course, i immediately google what that could mean.  seems that sometimes a post-o spike at or around 7 dpo (which is where i am today) could mean implantation.  if the temps stay high like that, it's considered a triphasic cycle.  i haven't had a spike like that before.  last month i had kind of a steady climb before it plummeted back down right before af.  this time it's held pretty steady at 97.7, with that big shot up today.  i'm anxious to see what happens over the next few days! 

we leave for our vacation on thursday 5/3.  af is due on 5/4.  i'm going to try to hold out until after af is due, but i may cave and poas on thursday before we leave for our trip.  we're staying with one of my high school besties, who knows that we've been ttc (she and her hubby struggled with it for about a year), so it would be so exciting to share good news with them! 

trying not to get my hopes up, but feeling good this cycle! 

Friday, April 27, 2012

on my heart

i recently found out that a coworker of mine is pregnant.  this is her 5th baby to a 4th baby-daddy.  she is desperately trying to keep this pregnancy a secret and doesn't want anyone to know about it.  she apparently told another coworker that she doesn't believe in birth control.  um, clearly.

it hurts me to say this, but i'm so mad about it.  here is a woman who just keeps getting pregnant by accident.  she doesn't actually raise any of these kids - her parents do most of the chlid-rearing (she herself has told me this, i'm not being catty and speculating).  she so easily gets pregnant and takes that completely for granted.

and yet, here we are, 7 months into ttc and we're not pregnant.  my fellow ttc'ers on hellobee are struggling.  thousands of women are struggling.  and here she's popping out kids left and right. 

i know it sounds mean.  it sounds bitter and jealous and catty.  and it is.  i don't want to feel this way, but i do.  i'm angry that it's taking us so long to conceive while others do it by accident.  i'm frustrated that my body is failing me.  i'm bitter that a woman who doesn't even seem to want to be pregnant is. 

but mostly, i'm sad.  my heart is so heavy with this news.  i don't want to be a bitter, angry person.  but there it is. 

i just want it to be our turn. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

news notes

a surprising risk for toddlers at playground slides - never really thought about it, but it does make perfect sense.  definitely gonna keep this in mind!  yikes!

catholic school teacher fired for using in-vitro fertilization - oh, this is just disgusting.  this is reason #768 why i would never consider attending a catholic church.  hypocrites.

instagram and pinterest follow in tumblr's footsteps in promoting healthy community - i have often found some of the posts on pinterest to be really disturbing-ly pro-anorexia.  i'm so happy to see they've taken steps to prevent this.  also, while you're on the link, snoop around the twloha website. it's an amazing organization and one that i support completely!

the cystic fibrosis foundation posted on facebook that the senate health committee passed the experrt act and it now moves on to the house energy and commerce commitee before finally falling to congress to pass into law.  the experrt act is an important step in moving research and drug development for rare diseases (like cystic fibrosis) forward.  please take a moment to email your congressman/woman and urge them to pass this.  my college roommate has cf and it is a devastating disease.

group claims responsibility for pitt bomb threats - yippee!  so happy this nightmare is over for my pitt family!  h2p!

marine who criticized obama on facebook: i wish i could take it all back - i bet you do, now that you've been dishonorably discharged.  this guy is a first-class dope.  you are a soldier in the united states military.  what's the first rule in the military?  never question your superiors.  the president is your commander in chief.  aka, your ultimate superior.  idiot.

rodney king anniversary: 20 years after la riots, have race relations improved? - can you believe it's been 20 years?  when this was actually happening, i was in 7th grade.  i had absolutely no understanding of how significant it was.  i definitely want to dig through some of the special coverage that nbc los angeles has.  rodney king was on celebrity rehab a couple of years ago and he really broke my heart.  often on that show i have a hard time feeling for the patients because they behave like such entitled assholes.  but rodney kind was clearly in pain and just couldn't face that issue.  so sad. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

[almost] wordless wednesday

it's wednesday, and it's been a while since i've linked up, so here goes...

here are a few of my favorite pins...

source: from whattopin via jenny on pinterest

source: from theworldwidegourment via michelle on pinterest

source: from weheartit via abbey on pinterest

source: from thenurserybook via amy on pinterest

source: from fodrizzle on fo'drizzle on pinterest

souce: from livingeventfully via abbey on pinterest

source: from zulily via zulily on pinterest

source: from bridalguide via jo on pinterest

happy hump day, guys!  hope the rest of the week goes quickly!

Monday, April 23, 2012

my week according to instagram

didn't take too many photos this week, unfortunately.  and i doubt i will this week, either.  the weather is supposed to be completely craptastic all week long.  yesterday we got hammered with rain and we're pretty much looking at sporadic rain for the entire week.  gross.

we were pleasantly surprised by the weather on saturday, since we thought it was going to rain all weekend long.  it ended up being sunny and about 78-degrees, so we were able to get some work done outside.  first, though, we had a contractor come by to give us an estimate on some work we want to have done in the front of the house.  last year, we had this company come by and rip out some shrubs and then build a retaining wall (see that project here).  but once that was done, we hated how the new wall looked up against the old flagstone steps, so now we're having them come back out to tear out the old steps and rebuild to match the wall.  we also had them give us an estimate on replacing the concrete patio with pavers. we also had him give us a quote on rebuilding the retaining wall around the tree in our front yard.  right now it's just stone (flagstone, i guess?) but it's falling apart and growing mold - it looks disgusting.  so we wanted to have them take that down and replace it with one to match the one in the front of the house.  mike from deleone landscaping came out and gave us a really great quote, but our budget will not allow for the entire project to be done at once.  so we will probably just do the steps and patio this year, and then the other retaining wall next year. 

anyway, once mike left, we did some weeding around the other gardens and i cleaned all of the patio furniture while matt trimmed the rhododendron bushes.  then we cleaned the house inside.  padfoot is still absolutely terrified of the vacuum, so i always have to lock her in the blue room while i'm sweeping, otherwise, she hides behind the fridge and i can't get her out for hours.  after i finished, she and i sat up in the window seat for a bit, enjoying the lovely weather. 

sunday we woke up (late!  10am!  thank you, padfoot!) and it was pouring out.  we had plans to meet my dad, sister, and her husband in wilmington for a birthday lunch (mine and callie's was in march, my dad's is on wednesday).  we ate lunch at iron hill brewery and then my dad, matt, and i went to see 21 jump street.  callie and anthony ended up leaving after lunch because they leave for hawaii on wednesday and needed to get laundry and some packing done.  you guys, you have to see 21 jump street.  it was hysterical.  i definitely was not expecting it to be that good.  we laughed through the entire thing.

anyway, here are the (very) few photos i took this week.  enjoy!

top l-r: ready for summer, cat grass love
bottom l-r: window seated, purple rain

hope you guys all had a great weekend and survived the rain/snow!  

weird signs

so i think o day was yesterday.  i think.  i'm not sure because my temperature spiked on saturday, then yesterday dropped again, and today went back up. 

source: from fertilityfriend

that's my chart on fertility friend.  see, it's kind of all over the place.  i'm not entire sure that that 97.7 on the 21st was totally accurate - i had kind of been awake for a while before taking my temperature.  if it is, i'm anxious to see where ff is going to put my coverline.  i'm kind of guessing it'll be around 97.6, with that 97.7 being just a fluke. 

yesterday and today i've been having some weird symptoms and i'm really not sure what to think of them.  i had some minor cramping yesterday and then last night i felt really nauseated.  i could have been due to the big slupper (late lunch/early supper) we had, but who knows.  also, yesterday and today my boobs have been very sore.  i usually get some soreness about a week before my period, but this is way early and a little different.  i've read that some women experience ovulation pain, so i'm assuming maybe that's what i'm having? 

as you can see, we kept pretty busy this past week.  i took my fertile cm faithfully (and definitely noticed a difference).  as far as i'm concerned, we're in our latest 2ww.  af is due on 5/6, which is the day we leave our friends' house in peachtree to drive to savannah.  abriel has been aware of the ttc journey for us all along, so it would be so wonderful to share exciting news with her!  if this cycle doesn't work, i'm calling the doctor, cuz we definitely did everything right this time around! 

Friday, April 20, 2012


a few posts ago, i talked about my desire to find a church for our family.  i mentioned that i didn't grow up attending church or learning bible stories.  so, in reality, i'm not entirely sure what my beliefs are.  i'd like to expand on that a bit, because i've been thinking about it a lot.

a few months ago i started following the blog the wiegand's.  casey is a beautiful and honest writer.  and she has deep and faithful love of the lord.  reading her words and feeling her candid belief in god kind of makes me feel empty.  like i'm missing something.  or missing out on something.  for years, i have eschewed religion and - more often - religious people.  i have thought them condescending and preachy.  i have found organized religion to be hypocritical and closed-minded.  and i have wanted to distance myself from that lifestyle.  lately, though, i'm finding myself drawn to it.  not necessarily to organized religion, but to deep spirituality and faith.  i think it is so beautiful to read how casey is able to turn herself over to prayer and seek peace, understanding, and answers.  some of her posts have brought me to tears and i find myself wanting to experience that level of devotion.

i very recently started following momastery, as well.  a friend of mine kept posting links to her posts on facebook, and i wandered over to see what all the fuss is about.  glennon is another beautiful writer with a deep connection to god.  her most recent post about the moment she thought she was going to lose her baby had me in tears on the train.  her unwavering belief that her husband's picture in the magazine she was reading meant that their baby was going to be ok is so inspiring.  it's something i've never experienced before - to just know something, deep within my gut.  to just have faith that someone or something was taking care of  me.  what a comfort that must be.

for years, i have denied the existence of a god, or higher power.  i have said that i believe that in life, you face choices, and you make decisions, and you deal with the consequences of those decisions, good or bad.  you are the driver and no one else.  but when i dig deep down into myself, i find that i actually do believe in something else.  i'm just not sure what that is.  i believe in a higher power of some sort (hence to forth will be referred to as god, because writing out "a higher power of some sort" each time is long and stupid).  i believe that you are given situations in which you have to make a decision.  those situations and the choices they present are part of your life.  i don't think god makes the decisions for me.  i don't even think god knows what decision i will make.  i think that with my own free will, i make my choices.  and sometimes i'm pretty sure they surprise god as much as they surprise me.  and look, i've made some pretty shitty decisions.  i've gone through some struggles in my life, and they've been hard and have tested me more than ever thought possible. and yet, here i am, a strong, independent, courageous, happy woman.  i no longer think i'm alone in making that happen.

maybe it's because of this ttc journey that i'm feeling a little lost.  that i'm feeling like a little guidance and faith would do me good.  maybe it's because i'm hoping to become a mother, which is the hardest but most rewarding job on the planet.  and i'm scared.  like any woman is, i'd imagine.  i want to make sure i do it right - all of it.  and what a feeling it must be for people who can sit down, speak to the lord, and feel heard.  and have faith that somewhere, someone or something is listening.  really listening. that's all i want.  and i'm on a mission to find it.  to dig deep within myself and find the place where i can believe in that.  to let go of all my skepticism and fears and condemnation and just give in.

cycle 7

got an opk yesterday.  we've been bd'ing since tuesday.  anticipating o tomorrow or sunday.  will bd till day after o.

source: from thegodbox

crossing my fingers, toes, eyes, legs...hell, i might even braid my hair this weekend! 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

news notes

titanic 100th anniversary: twitter users who 'just found out titanic actually happened!': this makes me profoundly sad for humanity.

bachelor diversity lawsuit may bring the series down to earth: not that i watch the bachelor all that much (my last season was the bob guinney season), but now that i think about it, it is glaringly obvious that they have a major diversity issue at the bachelor.

light week this week, sorry. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


have you heard of timehop yet?  i can't even remember where i read about it, but i checked it out and it's fun!  it's a service you can sign up for that will email you your social media postings from that day a year ago.  you can link it to your facebook, twitter, foursquare, and instagram accounts.  so for today, my facebook updates were about booking our trip to orlando for our anniversary, bottling a batch of matt's home-brewed beer, and watching waiting for superman.  i get an email in my inbox every morning telling me what i was doing a year ago. 

i know a lot of people are all up-in-arms about the new facebook timeline, but i actually kind of like it.  i voluntarily switched mine over about 6 months ago (at least).  i like that it gives you the opportunity to go back and add "important dates" in your timeline.  and you can look back at what you were doing.  the layout is a little bit harder to read, as it's not just a single column of stuff in completely chronological order.  but once you get used to it, i think it's pretty cool.

what do you think of the timeline?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

doing more

we're in our 7th cycle now of ttc.  i seriously never ever thought it would take this long.  i've decided to take some additional measures to aid in our attempts to get pregnant.

as of yesterday, i've stopped drinking.  i know initially i said after my birthday weekend, but then we decided to go to the fell's point brew fest with my sister and anthony.  as of friday i was still spotting from my period, and hadn't yet entered my fertile phase, so i figured one last hurrah would be fine.  and boy, i hurrah'd it up!  anyway, that was it for me and i'm laying off the booze now.  i've read that drinking can inhibit fertilization and especially implantation, so it's no more alcohol for me! 

in a previous post i mentioned that i was going to pick up a bottle of vitex.  but after doing some more research, i realized that vitex isn't really for me.  vitex is supposed to aide in making ovulation more regular and timely.  since i started charting, i've ovulated on cd17 every cycle.  so irregularity doesn't seem to be an issue.  but i am picking up a bottle of fertile cm.

source: fertilecm

this is supposed to promote that elusive egg-white cervical mucus that a woman's body produces when she's most fertile.  i have yet to actually see ewcm, so i'm hoping that by helping it along, we will have more luck in conceiving.  it also decreases the acidity of cm, which helps sperm survive longer.  my o date is supposedly sunday, so starting on friday i shoudl be in the "fertile window."  so i ordered this on amazon with one-day shipping so i'll get it tomorrow and get production started!

i am also considering taking some omega-3 fatty acids with dha (fish oil).  my sister works for a nutraceutical company (nutrition and pharmaceutical) that makes an omega-3 so i need to ask her if she can get some for me.  their company specializes in making a fish oil that has a pleasant minty smell and doesn't make you burp fish (gross).

elsewhere i'm trying to take better care of myself.  i'm eating better.  drinking more water.  and i started the couch to 5k program.  i'm going in to week 3 now.  so far, it's going really well, although i've just completed the week where i run 90 seconds, walk 2 minutes.  and it was pretty cool out last week.  we'll see how it goes doubling my running time this week in 80+-degree heat.  starting this week, the schedule is: jog 90 seconds, walk 90 seconds, jog 3 minutes, walk 3 minutes.  repeat that for 20 minutes.  we'll see!  i'm really hoping to complete this.  i'm trying to find a 5k to run in june, but so far i'm not really having much luck. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

my week according to instagram

it was a pretty great week!  matt and i went to snow patrol on tuesday night.  i have a post coming with my review, i promise!  work was pretty calm, which was nice after the insanity of the past few weeks.  and then saturday, matt and i drove down to baltimore to go to the fell's point brew fest with my sister and her husband and their friend allen.  we had a great time - too good, i was in bed by 7:30pm!  loser!  we drove back today and i did the grocery shopping then came home to make quinoa muffins and avocado egg salad.  here are a few pictures i took throughout the week (mostly tuesday night and saturday at the brew fest).

hope you guys all had a great weekend! 

Friday, April 13, 2012

chunks of time

something i've noticed about this whole ttc journey is that i feel like i'm living my life in 2 week chunks.  that's how everything seems to break down.  when i get my period, then i'm waiting 2 weeks for o day.  once i ovulate, then i'm waiting for 2 weeks to [not] get my period.  and each 2 week time frame feels like the longest 2 weeks in the world.

it's just that i'm so desperate to get pregnant.  it no longer feels like something i want, it's become something i need.  i'm trying to suppress that, though.  i remind myself to take a step back and look at my life and remember that i am really happy with where it is right now.  would a baby make it sweeter?  yes, absolutely.  but does my life need to be sweeter?  no, not really.  it's pretty freaking awesome as it is.

but when you're in the thick of this ttc journey/battle, it's hard to have that perspective.  making a baby sort of becomes the be-all-end-all and it becomes the primary focus of everything you do.  with every single decision i make, i'm thinking "is this the right thing to do, what if i get pregnant, what if we have a baby, what if..."  and i have to keep remembering i can't put my life on hold for a bunch of what-ifs.

millions of women every year have babies without planning their lives out in 2 week increments.  without stopping themselves from doing their favorite activities.  without thinking in 2 week chunks of time.  sometimes when we're making plans, i will literally sit and think to myself, "but that's right around my o date, i should stay home and take it easy."  why?  pregnancy isn't going to happen any easier if i'm laying around on my ass waiting for it!  i have to try to remember to let go and live in the moment.  no good can come of sitting around and wishing my life away.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

why i love glee...

because no other show could incorporate a duran duran mash-up and a song by gotye in the same breath and actually pull it off.

because chris colfer is perfection.

source: from aanything

because kids are hearing songs that, unless their parents force them to listen to them, they would never hear otherwise (honestly, what kid listens to duran duran these days?).

because jane lynch is perfection.

source: blog.mary
because it deals with some pretty heavy topics: bullying, suicide (though i was disappointed that there was no mention at all of karofski in wednesday's episode), teen pregnancy, adoption, and now sue's abnormal amnio, which means she'll likely have a baby with a birth defect or disability of some sort.  name one other show that has covered all these topics.

because it takes one of those topics, and then incorporates the message elsewhere.  for example, after karofski's suicide attempt, they had a psa at the end to promote a bullying hotline.  when they first introduced the character becky and sue's sister with down syndrome, they ran a psa for the "stop the r word" campaign.  and now that quinn is paraplegic due to texting while driving, they had 2 commercials to "delete" texting and driving.

because will and emma are the cutest couple in the history of forever.

source: from screenrant
 because it's fun and puts a smile on my face every week.

news notes

rick santorum drops out - oh, thank heaven. 

connecticut boy brings heroin to show and tell; step-dad arrested - wait, what?!

fbi's joint terrorism task force probes bomb threats at university of pittsburgh - i've been following this on facebook since it started - as a "fan" of pitt, i get all the evacuation notices on my news feed.  it's multiple threats a day at this point.  i cannot imagine how frustrating and scary this is for the students, faculty, and staff.  as a pitt alum, my heart just aches.

chili's introduces touch screens at tabletops so you can avoid human contact - this is just wrong on so many levels.  a of all, if you don't like human contact, then order the food for carryout and go home.  b of all, try interacting and talking with your children rather than just throwing a game in their face to get them to shut up.  c of all, it's total bullshit that this won't cut down on the number of actual servers needed.

george zimmerman to plead not guilty to second-degree murder in trayvon martin case - i haven't spoken too much on this whole case.  but i'm glad to see that they did finally file charges.  i'll be anxious to see how this all pans out over the next several months.

jury selection begins in john edwards' trial - he should go to jail just for abandoning his wife when she was diagnosed with cancer.  douchebag.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


over the years, i have created a list of words that i will not use in day-to-day communication.  in any communication, actually.  they are words that i find mean, harmful, and inappropriate.  i'll drop an f-bomb like it's nobody's business, but i will not use these words.  and if i catch myself using them (or even thinking them), i'm very disappointed in myself. 

i stopped using the word "gay" about 10 years ago.  people use the word to describe something that is weak or lame.  by using the word "gay" to describe those things, we are essentially saying that gay=weak.  this is hurtful to gay people.  imagine if someone said, "dude, that's so erin" when describing something that was lame.  that would hurt me.  when i came to this realization, i stopped saying it.  i also would yell at my friends if they used it in my presence.  several of my friends did stop, and i know they've also gotten other people to stop. 

i also stopped using the word "retarded" a few years ago.  again, i came to realize that i was using the word to describe things that were dumb or stupid or weird.  and people with retardation are not those things.  they have physical or mental disabilities, but that doesn't mean they're dumb.  many of my friends also stopped using it, and to this day i still yell at people who use it around me.  one of my friends had stopped using it for a long time, but when we recently were at their house, she said it several times.  i was really shocked.  matt and i even talked about it on our way home, and my theory is that her 5-year-old son is picking it up at daycare and now she is picking it up again.  but i was honestly surprised by my reaction to hearing her use it - it felt like a punch to the gut almost. 

i do not - and have never - used the word "jew" as a verb, as in "he jewed him down."  even as a child, i knew that just felt wrong.  matt occasionally says it, and i do not hesitate to correct him.  he grew up hearing his father use that phrase, and so to him it never seemed wrong.

matt's family says other things that i think are inappropriate, and i do my best to point it out to matt when he says them.  but he and his brothers came up with "code words" to replace the actual hurtful words, so to him, it doesn't seem so bad.  like they say "reek" instead of "retarded."  sometimes i'll correct him and he'll say "but i didn't say it!"  maybe not, but the intention is the same.  matt and his brothers hold many prejudices and make snap judgements on people based on those stereotypes.  when i catch matt making judgements, i'll discuss it with him and try to understand why he's made that conclusion and then i'll try to make him understand why it's incorrect. 

i really hope to raise our children to not use those words and not hold those prejudices.  i also hope to raise our children to not be afraid to correct their friends who use those words.  i do not want to teach our children to be colorblind, but rather to see and embrace the different races and cultures that make our world so beautiful.  if you raise a child to see nothing but sameness, they will never fully appreciate the beauty of the things that world has to offer.  teach a child to see differences and they will never stop learning and exploring.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


matt and i have talked a few times about church and about wanting to raise our children as church-goers.  or at least raising them as members of a church community.  while this is not a stretch for matt, who grew up going to catholic church every sunday and went to ccd classes and was an alter boy, this is a big thing for me.  i was not raised as a member of a church.  i was baptized at 2 years old, and then we went maybe once or twice a year at christmas and easter.  my sister was not baptized until she was 15.  church just wasn't an important part of our lives.  as i got older, and especially once i graduated college and was living at home for a while, i started going more regularly.  but it still never seemed important enough for me to find my own church.  i go when i'm home on holidays and sometimes on weekends.  and getting married in my church was weirdly important to me. 

my home church is a lutheran church and i love it.  but i think i love it because my "roots" are there.  matt was raised catholic, and i refuse to raise our children as catholics.  no offense meant to anyone who is catholic, i just find the catholic church to be hypocritical and closed-minded.  the church, not the parishioners.  let me be clear.  i know plenty of perfectly lovely catholic people.  i just cannot imagine giving my time and money to the catholic church. 

so we're talking about trying to find a church around our home that we can join and later baptize and raise our children in.  there are plenty of churches around us to look into.  i'm just not even sure what denomination to try.  protestant, methodist, lutheran, presbyterian, episcopal.  i want to find a church that welcomes all walks of life with open arms.  that encourages service to others.  that teaches love and respect for others.  that does not teach fear as a form of discipline (matt once told me that he behaved as a child because he was taught that if he misbehaved he would go to hell - i am no ok with this).  but above all, i want to find a church where we both feel comfortable and as a part of a warm community. 

i thought about it more this weekend, and tried to decide exactly what i want to raise our children to believe.  and i realized that this will be difficult for me, since i'm still not sure what i believe.  what i would like to do is have open, frank, honest discussions with our children about religion and god and jesus.  but in order to do this, i feel like i need to read the bible or take bible study classes.  i know next to nothing about the bible.  the most i know about christmas is what i learned from piecing together sermons from church and watching christmas movies.  what i know about good friday and easter i learned from watching the passion of the christ.  i'm pretty clueless.  and part of that ignorance comes from my inability to grasp some of the concepts of the bible.  and part of it also comes from my inherent need to rebel against anything i've ever felt "forced" upon to believe or support. 

but i like the feeling i have when i'm church.  i feel like i'm being heard.  by whom, i don't know.  but i feel comforted and at peace.  a kind of serenity washes over me.  the world around me and inside my head gets quiet and i can just be with myself.  and this is and of itself says a lot, because it's often hard for me to turn my brain off.  but when i'm kneeling in church, i just feel calm.  i feel like all my troubles and worries and concerns are washed away, even if just for a brief moment.  and sometimes, that's all i need.  

in an ideal world, matt and i will find a church that we're happy with.  i will attend some bible studies and familiarize myself a bit more with the lessons and teachings and stories.  our children will be baptized and attend bible school.  and we, as a family, will discuss those teachings and ideas and lessons.  our children can then choose to be confirmed and continue to attend church if they see fit.  and if not, that's ok, too.  i will not force our children to attend church once they have the mind to make that decision. 

how did you (or would you) go about finding a new church for you and your family?  where do you think we should start?

Monday, April 9, 2012

my week according to instagram

i just downloaded it on friday, but i've already taken a few shots and started playing with instagram.  i'm having lots of fun with it, and i'm hoping it will make me better at documenting my day-to-day life.  here are a few shots from this weekend.

matt and i headed home on saturday and spent saturday evening with his family.  we saw cousins and aunts and uncles that we hadn't seen in ages, so it was nice to catch up.  sunday morning we went to church with my mom and jeff, then headed over the hershey country club for a big easter feast with my step-siblings and their families.  my step-sister melissa has 5 kids and my step-brother john has 2, so our grand total 19 people!  yep, we definitely brought the party to the hcc!

i hope you all had a great weekend, and a happy easter if that's what you celebrate!!

*clearly i need to figure out how to do those cool instagram collages next!*

Friday, April 6, 2012


i joined instagram.  i sense a new addiction coming on.  follow me if you want to - i'm emma_ike.  but just so you know, it'll probably mostly be pictures of my husband and my cat.  and maybe some flowers.

you've been warned. 

Thursday, April 5, 2012

on my heart


on my heart today is the fact that i am a grade a idiot/asshole.  i've been taking a prenatal vitamin since about august, in preparation for our ttc journey.  i found one at gnc that i really like called gnc ultra mega green prenatal.  multivitamins in the past have always made me super nauseated (from the iron, is what i'm told).  but this prenatal has a special kind of iron that is gentler and doesn't make me sick.  i've been taking it [almost] every morning for the past 8 months.  i also like it because on top of all the necessary vitamins and minerals, it also has a fruit and vegetable blend to give me a boost in my intake of those things.  it's only 350mg, but i'll take what i can get.

today, i started looking into other supplements i can take to help increase my fertility.  af hasn't showed up yet, but this morning i had some spotting, so i'm thinking that this is not our cycle.  i went back to reference a post on hellobee by a ttc blogger about some supplements that she takes, and as i was re-reading it, i realized that she said she takes her prenatal vitamin 4 times a day.  "4 times a day?  that seems like overkill."  i went back to check out the label on my vitamin and saw this:

cue tears.

i'm so fucking mad at myself.  disappointed.  disgusted.  what kind of a parent will i be if i can't even read the label on my own prenatal vitamin bottle?

so, as of today, i'll be taking the three recommended vitamins per day.  i'm also going to try to find some vitex to add to my daily meds.  last week, i also decided that after my birthday weekend, i was going to quit drinking, pregnant or not.  i'm eating better and exercising (i started the couch to 5k program this week, more on that to come).  time to buckle down and get really serious. 

news notes

watch the wire: how your grill brush could make you sick - yikes. i do think about this, though, when i'm cleaning the grill.  actually, i worry more about the side of our brush that has "cleaning solution" on it.  is that even safe for me to ingest?

holy smoke! - really interesting article.  so very true.  christianity has been twisted and blown so far away from its original intent, it's really very sad.  not that i'm a practicing christian, or anything for that matter, but as an observer, i just find it really disturbing.

the dirty dozen and clean 15 of produce - i have a mother who is a food chemist and a very close friend who is a food scientist.  what i've learned from them is that most products that are labeled organic are not actually organic, they're just more expensive.  and if my mom and my friend don't buy organic for their families, then i don't need to, either.  but i would like to start buying more produce from a local farmer's market, just so the food is cleaner and also so it's locally sourced.  so it's good to know that even if i just stick with the dirty dozen, i'll be doing better.

pink slime in your meat? labels to tell you, usda says - i haven't really been following this whole pink slime controversy, but it is nice to read that safeway, inc, who owns genaurdi's (which is where we do our shopping), has refused to sell products with the pink slime in it.  cuz when you read about it, it sounds pretty nasty.

nissan's taxi of tomorrow rolls into new york - interesting.  i love the concept of the transparent roof.  what a great way to let the tourists take in the big skyscrapers without having to crane their necks.  i do wonder about wheelchair accessibility in these - how will a person in a wheelchair transfer into it?

khalid sheikh mohammed, 4 others charged 9/11 attack - wait, what?  we hadn't charged them yet?  that is my first reaction to this story.  my second one is that the aclu is protesting these trials?  no offense, but these people are not americans and should not be afforded the right to a "fair" american trial.

doctors call for end to 45 medical tests, procedures - i come down on both sides of the debate here, i think.  as a woman who had pre-cancerous cervical lesions that were caught by a routine pap smear (at the age of 22), i strongly believe that pap smears should continue to be a yearly test for every woman over the age of 18 and/or age of first sexual encounter.  i will never change my mind on this, no matter how many doctors try to say its unneccessary.  tell that to the 22-year-old who's just been told she can't have children because the lesions got so big that they had to cut out her entire cervix (mine was big enough that being able to carry to term is a concern, and i may need to have my cervix stitched shut to maintain a pregnancy).  ok, but on the other side, as a hospital employee, i can definitely tell you that doctors order way too many tests.  we have one doctor in particular who orders a stress test for nearly every single patient who walks through the door - it's become a running joke.  but it is an enormous waste of healthcare dollars.  so i can definitely get on board with making doctors more responsible for thinking about whether or not a patient actually needs a test.

police probe tyler perry's profiling claim - oh, tyler.  really?  racial profiling?  a, you broke the law, which you clearly admitted.  b, you had tint on your windows so the officers couldn't see you clearly enough to assess the situation, which is what they do in every single routine traffic stop.  c, they didn't recognize you, so they were surprised to hear that you thought you were being followed, so they asked why you thought that.  d, you didn't turn off the engine, which is what you're supposed to do in any routine traffic stop.  e, they saw you reaching for something concealed in your middle console.  their behavior is perfectly appropriate.  and then the black officer shows up, recognizes you as a celebrity, and gets them to apologize?  had you been any other average shmuck - black, white, or purple - you would not have gotten an apology.  you would have gotten a ticket for breaking the law and told to be more careful.  get over yourself.

13 simple steps to get you through a rough day - not an article, but damn funny.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

oh, how pinteresting

it's time to link up with michelle at the vintage apple for oh, how pinteresting wednesday!

it's always so much fun to check out other people's pins.  like, seriously, go check out michelle's list today and i dare you to not squee at the kitty nose.  but i also have a great time going through my boards to find some good pins to share with you guys!  hope you enjoy this week's installment!

source: from flickr via jenny on pinterest

source: from notesondesign via erin on pinterest

source: from fxanimation via anika on pinterest

source: from fuckyeahunitedstates via dana on pinterest

source: from theacolyte via jennifer on pinterest

source: from shadesofscarlett via sara on pinterest

from: source theweddingtree via nicole on pinterest

from: source photoshelter via megan on pinterest

source: from peterroot on pinterest

source: from iaianclaridge via mathew on pinterest

source: from butdoesitfloat via erik on pinterest
 you should click the source link for the staple city one - that guy has done some really cool stuff with ordinary items.  it's really amazing.  and also check out the source link for the last picture, from  they are haunting photos.  really beautiful.

hope you enjoyed this week's oh, how pinteresting!  see you all back here next week!