Tuesday, April 1, 2014

BarBABYdos: Phone Consult

We had our phone consult with Dr. Skinner this morning, and we are right on track as expected!  

The call went very well, we thought.  She went over all of our history and talked about how that would affect our protocols and treatment.  Some of the things we know now is that I will be on an antagonist protocol, and we are using Gonal-F and Menopur/Repronex (I need to do a little bit more research into what that means), diabetes control is not usually bothered by down-reg or stim drugs, and that they typically culture embryos out to the blastocyst (older) stage and transfer two at a time in women my age. We discussed concerns about me carrying a twin pregnancy (she estimates my odds of pregnancy with a 2-embryo transfer at about 80%, but of twins near 40%), and talked about the pros and cons of single-embryo versus 2-embryo transfer.  She cited various medical studies on these topics, which we really appreciate! 

Overall, we were impressed with her thoroughness and her obvious brilliance.  We especially loved every time she said something to the effect of "because of your diabetes, we'll do ____" or "because of your PCOS, you'll probably__, so we'll probably__."  We feel like she was considering all angles and that we are getting a very personalized protocol :-)  

The next step is for Anna, the clinic coordinator (and lovely lady who has already graciously fielded roughly a zillion dumb or nervous questions from me) to call/email me to talk specifics of HOW we'll coordinate with my doctors here, HOW I'll get HOW MUCH of WHICH medications sent to me, WHEN we start each step, and all of the other million little details. :-)  Dr. Skinner said she'd call hopefully in the next 24 hours or so... it's only been about five hours as of the publishing of this post, and I have been DIVING for my phone every time the poor little chunk of metal makes a noise. :-)  So exciting!!  Eeeep!!! 
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PS: And just in case you're wondering... I am aware of the date, and none of this is a "joke."  ;-)

Monday, March 31, 2014

BarBABYdos: Scrapbooking IVF

I am planning on making our own baby book with scrapbook supplies.  One of the major reasons (*salute* "Maj. Reasons"... yay pop culture!) for this is so I can customize it to our child and our family... and maybe avoid some of those empty pages!  :-)

Also, not a lot of baby books come with "Conceiving Baby" sections (for obvious reasons, I guess), and I feel like that is going to be a HUGE part of our baby's story, and one that we want him or her to know.  Several months ago, I pinned an item on etsy that was a baby book/pregnancy book for "alternative" families, including those using fertility treatments and/or adoption to build their families.  It was neat, it was customizable, and I wanted it... but that seller has totally disappeared from etsy.  And the whole rest of the internet.  Dagnabbit.  So, back to making my own, which is shaping up to be a funny hybrid of vacation scrapbook and diary of medical procedures :-) 

So, help me out here, wise IVF veterans... what are some things I need to plan on photographing/journaling?  What are the things about this process that we will truly want to remember and want our children to know?  So far, I can think of:
  • Pictures of us the clinic staff
  • Snapshots of ultrasound screens during monitoring/whenever else one of us can reach our iPhone camera ;-)
  • Microscope picture of embryo/s pre-transfer, if possible
  • Pictures of meds - unused shipment, injecting myself/Ethan injecting me, full sharps container, any gnarly bruises ;-)
  • Maybe some pics of the rooms we do our massage/acupuncture/etc in?
  • Obviously, vacation stuff like pics in the airports, flight info, save our boarding passes... hotel, beach, any outings we feel up to taking...
  • Daily journaling (blogging should help with that!)
Am I forgetting anything?  Where we haven't been through a cycle yet, I'm paranoid that I'm not going to think to photograph/journal/save something that I'll regret down the road!
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PS:  Our phone consult with Dr. Skinner is tomorrow morning!  Please pray it goes as well as we expect it will :-)  

PPS:  My glass class was this afternoon, and I am SO HOOKED!!  I made three beads, but I can't pick them up for a week... but here's a picture of me, a bead in progress, and a 3000 degree flame :-)

Friday, March 28, 2014

Lampwork Beads Pinspiration

I started the second placement of my internship on Monday, at my old high school :-)  It is so fun to be back there, and I feel like I'm learning a lot already.  I am also so glad that it is spring break now!!  

I have some exciting plans for spring break... I've been saving some Christmas money to go to the spa, planning on using it during IVF to relax a little :-) But since I won't be in reach of my favorite spa during IVF, I'm going to get a massage and a haircut one day over spring break!  Another day, we have our phone consult with Dr. Skinner at Barbados Fertility Center!  And on Monday, I'm checking an item off my bucket list - learning to make lampwork glass beads :-)  I've wanted to take a class and maybe rent some studio time to see if I like it and have a knack for it before I invest in a kiln and torch.  One of my goals for this year is to make at least one donation to Beads of Courage, which is a super-cool organization that gives special beads to kids with chronic serious illnesses to help them tell their stories. 

Ethan gave me a groupon for this class for Christmas, and ever since, I've been pinning some of my favorite lampwork beads on Pinterest for inspiration.  The talent behind most of these beads is INSANE, and I know it will be a while if I'm ever this good, but I just love looking at these!  So I thought I'd share, because who can't use some happy pretty colorful pinspiration!?! :-)

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PS: Please see my pinboard for information on these beads, their designers and where to purchase some of them :-)

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Outfit Post: Happy Spring!

I'm just popping in for a quick outfit post today :-) 

I had to run a quick little errand today, and since it's the first day of spring, I wanted to go "springy!"  I still have a lot of spring clothes to unpack (and de-apartment-stenchify), but I picked this cardigan up at the outlets a couple of months ago, thinking it would be a good all-year piece... yeah, it's definitely a spring sweater!  So I broke it out gleefully today, paired it with a spring-green cami and tossed on one of my most colorful, vibrant necklaces :-)  

Khaki Pants: JCP brand from JCPenney.  I cuffed them; they're actually ankle-length.
Green Cami: This thing is so old I can't read the tag anymore!!!
Blue Cardi: LOFT outlet.
Sandals: Maripé (Rack Room, I think)
Necklace: Always, Katie (see this post)
Toe Nail Polish: L'Oreal Paris, Wishful Pinking

It was still a LITTLE bit chilly out, and I've seen people use the "S" word (rhymes with NO!) regarding Tuesday, but for today, I just reveled in winter being officially, technically over :-)  Happy Spring, y'all!
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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Grilled Peanut Butter Treat

I went to college to learn things, and I learned a LOT of really cool things.  

One of those really cool things was this little secret:

Melty. Peanut butter. Is.  AMAZING!

During finals week, our RAs tried to help us keep grounded and relaxed, and one year, my RA brought her griddle to the commons room and made us all grilled PB&J.  This isn't so much as recipe post as it is a "Hey, if you haven't tried this... try this!" post, but I got a craving for this yesterday and thought how tragic it would be if someone out there had never tasted this heavenly little snack, so I thought I'd share it :-)  

The concept is super-simple... make yourself a peanut butter and jelly (or just peanut butter, or peanut butter and apple butter, or peanut butter and honey...) sandwich, butter the outsides of each piece of bread, and grill it up over medium heat on the stove.  Make sure the outsides of the bread get that nice, golden crispyness! Then, I used my brand-spankin'-new powdered sugar shaker from Pampered Chef to sprinkle a little extra sweetness on top, too :-)  It's totally decadent and not at all low-cal, but I figure the protein in the peanut butter has to count for something, right?

Next time you're in need of some comfort food, give this a try! It's quick, easy, and fun... and melty peanut butter is seriously the yummiest thing in the world :-)  If you need a shaker like mine (a million different uses!), pop over and visit my wonderful Pampered Chef consultant, Bethany!
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