Our miracle RAINBOW BABY BOY arrived 8/2018

1st IVF = BFN
2nd IVF = Baby A, born May 2015
3rd IVF = Miscarriage at 14 weeks
4th IVF = BFN
After we paid for 5th IVF, positive pregnancy without IVF!

Because the important moments in life just don’t fit in a status update! I started this blog when I was training for my first ½ Ironman, (70.3 miles) to record what I hoped would be growth and progress but ended up being a huge learning experience. Although fitness is one of the key ingredients to a happy life, it certainly isn't the only ingredient. My blog has evolved to document growth, progress and setbacks in other areas too. From my surprise proposal in Rome and wedding in the fall of 2013, to Mom's devastating stage IV cancer diagnosis and death 2 weeks after I found out I was pregnant. Who knows what shape it will take, but thanks for being along for the ride.

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

February AND March, 2024

Well, it finally happened. After over a decade of blogging at least once a month, I finally fell behind, and here I am, writing my February and March updates in April. I have a few valid excuses, I promise. I'm in my very last class for my doctoral program; my last class before starting my dissertation. And, of course, I was reeling from Dad's death, which was extremely rough there for a while. Yep, life happened, and boy, did it hit hard. But I'm happy to report that I am on the other side of it and no longer feeling "dicey" on a daily basis. I am attending church more regularly than ever before, which is so healing and comforting. I'm harnessing the feeling that life is too short and fleeting and using it to enhance my life rather than hinder it. Most days. I'm trying to use the realization that life is short as a catalyst for having fun, being silly, and enjoying the heck out of the kids and my hubby, rather than lamenting the fact that I am presently older than my dad was when I was in high school. 

One day as I headed out for a run, I remembered my Dad heading out for runs before work. I was reflecting on his influence in my choice to become a runner, and hoping it could have the same effect on my children. Then, I did the math, and realized that when my father was my age, I was a high school student.  When my mother was my age? I was 21 years old. Yet my children are only 5 and 8, and both of them are no longer here with us. That means that in the blink of an eye, I'll be gone, too. But it's not what happens to us that matters, it's what we do with it; how we respond. I am choosing to capitalize on this realization that life is way too short and use it to my advantage to become an even better Mom, wife, sister, counselor, and friend. I'm also using it to try and be healthier than ever before. We lost Mom far too soon, at only 63. I'm continuing with my running and lifting weights to build muscle mass. Being in shape is not just about looks (which do boost our self confidence and mood) but also about being in a good mood from the endorphins of working out as well as longevity. I want to be in shape to enhance both my quality and quantity of life. 

Without further adieu, here's what we've been up to!

Aut enrolled in a cooking enrichment after-school class one day a week. She loves it, and often comes home and teaches Cha how to cook! A disaster of a mess is usually made which is totally fine. Life is too short to worry about that.

Our beautiful girl started her headgear, which, thankfully, she only has to wear at night. Curious why kids are wearing braces in 2nd and 3rd grade, not middle school like when we were kids? I was, too! I learned that it is important to take them in before their bones fuse in adolescence because changes can be made much easier at this time. If we had waited, her pallet expander and headgear might not have done the trick, and she may have needed surgery! Her headgear was very painful at first, but she has since adjusted. It's pretty cute and pitiful when she is angry or upset and wearing it. Sweet girl.

We celebrated Valentine's Day with prime rib at orange mining company and went to February for our week off, known as ski week in our district. It was amazing to have some down time. When I'm at home on vacation, there's always something that needs to be done. But up there, it is much more relaxing. We flew and my hubby drove up with all of the dogs and their new go-kart. 

My mother-in-law bought a weeping willow, which I planted by the lake in honor of Dad. He planted one for me as a child because it was my favorite tree, but it died because it was too dry there.

Both kids finished their winter basketball, and Aut's team went to playoffs and won first place. We also worked in another Legoland trip and a few trips to Disneyland.

Aut is nearing the end of her two years of religious education classes in preparation for her first Holy Communion. Although she had her first reconciliation at the top of the Scala Sancta in Rome, she attended with her class and sweet cousin, who gave her a pair of cross earrings for the occasion.

My best friend surprised me with tickets to a murder mystery dinner show, something I have wanted to do for a while. But the real surprise was that she paid extra to make me one of the suspects! It was way more inappropriate and raunchy than we expected, and we laughed just like we were back in junior high! I love this tried-and-true friend more than she knows. She has been there for me through all of life's ups and downs, as I hope I've been there for her.

When we returned from Oregon, we started heating our pool again and enjoyed the nice weather and some new floaties purchased at the end of last season.

Cha started spring T-ball, with the best coach ever: Daddy! And I started taking my classes and jumping through a few other hoops to obtain my CCW permit
Not bad for my 1st time at the range

We celebrated Glen's Birthday, I led a Girl Scouts meeting and then hiked behind our house the following day so the girls could earn their hiking badge, saw MJ the Musical with our friends, prepared for Easter, and if that didn't cause us to be busy enough...BOTH Golden Retrievers had a litter of puppies on 3/22 and 3/26! To top it all off, hubby flew to another state for a killer deal (31% off MSRP) on my dream car: a Wagoneer! 

Closed out the month with Easter services and an amazing dinner with our family friends, who are more like family than friends. As I sit here recapping all of this, I realize just how busy we've been, but it's so much good stuff! I remain thankful and blessed in this busy season. Spring break is approaching, and we are not able to go to Ireland as planned due to our 14 (!!!) puppies that will soon be mobile. Looking forward to some more downtime in that week and hoping to read a book, not just listen to my audiobook on the drive to and from work.