Friday, August 27, 2010

Photo Friday- Words

Today's photo theme is words. I love the written word. Reading and writing are my favorite past times. I am also very picky about which fonts I use. I can be composing an email or making invitations. The font sets the tone.
These are a few things around my house.


This is a roller coaster I bought at a garage sale. It's probably from the 80's and in impeccable condition. I love stuff like this.

These are my great grandmother's nursing pins. Her name is Anna. My grandfather was always so proud because I resemble her. I have seen many pictures, and I cannot argue. This sits on my living room mantel.


This magnet was given to me by my SIL.




This is hard to read but it says, Certificate of Citizenship.
We received this in the mail yesterday.
My baby is officially a U.S. citizen. To read more about this monumental day click here.

Visit Creating Motherhood for more of Photo Friday.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

An End Is A Beginning

Three years ago my husband and I knew we wanted to adopt. We had chosen the agency, decided on international adoption, and knew which country. We were not completely ready to put in our paperwork. Financials held us back and emotionally we needed a little more time before we were completely up to the challenge of adoption. But we were sure adoption was the way we would become parents.

In October of 2007 we had our first meeting coordinated by our adoption agency. It was a gathering at the social worker's home. Over bagels and coffee we met six other couples who were at different stages of their adoption journey. Some were there just for information, others had recently received their "referral" and knew who their son or daughter would be, and there were two couples who were just waiting for that call. The call that would put them on a plane to meeting their new son or daughter. I remember distinctly the names of the babies in waiting, Priscilla and Charlie. We also got to meet two families and their children. This helped me to fully embrace adoption. Seeing these parents and their children helped me to envision what my family would be like, look like. Meeting their children helped all the emotions I had stirring in my gut- anxiety, fear, excitement, sadness- swirl together into one emotion, anticipation of being a mother. I was so happy knowing I would definitely be a mother.

We had our home study in November of 2007. The interview process was a nice experience. We were happy to tell our story and why we wanted to adopt a child. Two weeks later, as promised, I received a phone call at work. We were having a boy! What an amazing day. Better yet was the next day when we made the 25 minute drive to the social worker's home to find out more information about our son and see his face. We chose to hear his story before seeing his picture. We listened intently and learned about his health and progression as a 10 month old.

Finally M. revealed his picture and both our jaws dropped. He was sooooo cute. And the name that we had always wanted for a boy suited him. My heart was in my throat. And I wanted him home that day. I loved him already.

Christmas was a wonderful time. After so many years of wishing we would receive gifts for our baby, it was amazing to open box after box of items for our little boy. The pictures we had of him were placed in ornament frames adorned on everyone's Christmas trees. We included his picture in our Christmas card.

"Happy Holidays." And, by the way... here is our SON! In case you didn't know...

The months went on and we prepared or "nested" as people say. The crib arrived and was assembled. Gifts were placed in the room, clothes hung in the closet, toys found their spot in the house. We had an idea of when he would be home, but there was a glitch with our fingerprints that delayed his arrival by about 2 months.

Min man's birthday is in March. Originally we thought he would be home by his first birthday. That was a little difficult. Then Mother's Day came and went. One Saturday afternoon I received photos of Min man on his first birthday. They were absolutely amazing. This was the first time we saw his brilliant smile. I wish you could all see it. His smile lights up his entire face. His smile would light up your face instantaneously.

We went to NYC to pick up our son on June 3, 2008. We made it back to Rochester (home) by June 4. When we got off the plane, we were greeted by a huge crowd of friends and relatives. This was our moment to relish. We were new parents and our son was home. There was not a dry eye in the house.

As my SIL said, "What a magical way to become a parent."

Today we received the long awaited Certificate of Citizenship from Immigration and Naturalization. Even though Min man became a citizenship on his adoption day, we needed this final document to make everything official according to our government. This was a fact we were surprised by when applying for his social security card shortly after his adoption day.

It is hard to believe there is nothing left to do. No more forms to fill out or money to pay in order to declare he is ours and a U. S. citizen.

Even though the road has been long, (including all the years of infertility treatments) kissing my son good night never gets old. Hearing his voice and silly comments make me get out of bed in the morning. That smile can change the world.

Our beginning started a very long time ago. But every day is a new beginning. Every day with a child is a new opportunity to be a better person and parent.

Thank goodness I have my son to keep things in perspective. The delight he has in a butterfly or big truck driving down the road remind me that life really can be simple.

I hope I can always view life through his eyes. Even when he is a grown man, he will always be my baby.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Perfect Moment Monday- Fall Is In The Air


The weather here has already moved closer to the Fall spectrum. Autumn is one of my favorite times of year. I walked in the drug store and they had Halloween decorations out. I am looking forward to planting some mums. The air was crisp today. I could smell the change in season. It was nice wearing a cardigan today. We will have more hot days in the next 5 weeks, but they will be minimal. Min man does a great pirate impression. He is looking forward to being a pirate for Halloween. This will be the first year he gets it. Lots of fun to come.
Visit Weebles Wobblog for more Perfect Moments.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Thanks for Visiting

Welcome to Parenthood for Me. This blog is a branch of the non-profit I founded in 2008. PFM assists people who are trying to build their families through adoption or medical intervention.
We just awarded our first grants. Yay!

4 couples throughout the U.S. received $3,000 each to help with both adoption and assisted reproductive technology.

To learn more about the non-profit visit our website http://www.parenthoodforme.org/

To learn more about my story visit the right side bar to read PFM Best Posts.

Be a fan on Facebook- Parenthood for Me.org

FYI-
Several people have asked me if they can make a donation on someones behalf. For example, in lieu of flowers when someone passes away, for a graduation or birthday.

Yes. You can email mail a personal check or go to our website and donate via Paypal.

Do not forget to tell us the name and address of the person and contact information so that we can write a letter acknowledging the contribution.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

It's Too Yuck

This is a post where I talk about life with a three year old. There are some things I just have to share. As I write this I am stifling a laugh. This is how things are for me these days. Laughter through tears. Three is a tough age. Tougher than 2. Min man is just like most three year olds- stubborn, won't listen, has tantrums, and on. He is trying to figure out life and so many things are new every day. We get into a battle of wills. He waits for me to give in and I wait for him to listen to me and behave.

My new favorite part is when he says," I so mad, Mom!"


I keep telling him to use words and explain his emotions instead of hitting, pinching, kicking, and on.


The best part of 3 is that practically everything that comes out of his mouth is hilarious. I am constantly laughing out loud. If there was a space on my floor not covered with cars, I could probably roll on the floor laughing.

Min man has an infectious laugh and smile. It is priceless when he laughs at himself being funny. I don't help things because I find him so amusing that I cannot keep a straight face. Then he starts laughing really hard and there we sit giggling and laughing at each other laughing.


Min man started pre-school a few weeks ago. The second day I went to pick him up the teacher came right up to me and said," One of the kids bit your son. It didn't break the skin. We had the nurse look at it." I chuckled 'cause I was so relieved he wasn't the biter. And I was able to guess why the poor child felt the need to bite my son; Min man was fighting over a toy and saying 'it's MINE.'

School is great because his world is getting larger. He comes home singing songs like "Ritzy, ritzy spider." He talks about his friends. When I ask him what their names are, he says, " I know." (aka I don't know)

The other night I told him that he was getting a special treat- his dessert. He sat in his chair and I placed the ramekin of peach crisp in front of him. He kept going on an on about it was his special treat. "It's mine? Wow" After about five minutes of talking about it, he says," I all done. I can't like it. It's too yuck."







Here is a picture of a card made the other day. He said it was his own birthday card.






And, think it's time for new pj's?


Friday, August 13, 2010

Guest Author- Trying To Conceive

Please welcome my guest blogger who co-authors Trying to Conceive. While I was struggling to get pregnant I was too distraught to think about anything else but doctor's appointments and shots. I knew I should change things about my lifestyle but it all seemed to much. I also never took the time to really learn about my body and my own fertility. Because I discovered that I had PCOS really early on, I was not encouraged to try naturally and learn about my own cycles, etc. I really wish I had done that before diving into IUI's and medication.
Here is some helpful information and reminders about preparing our bodies to conceive and be healthy.

Also, in case you missed my last post, PFM wrote its first grant checks this week. Yay!
====================================

My name is Olivia, and I am a mother of two kids conceived through IUI after a three-year struggle with infertility. My co-blogger Tania is a registered nurse who has been trying to conceive since the start of this year.

Our blog, http://www.trying-to-conceive.com/ covers topics surrounding conception, fertility challenges, and pregnancy.

Preparing your body for pregnancy

Most of us spend a long time mentally preparing before trying to conceive, but have you thought about the physical aspect? There are quite a few things that you can do to boost your fertility and prepare your body for pregnancy. I’ll discuss some straight forward steps that any woman can take before she starts trying for a baby, and during the period in which she is hoping to conceive.

Take a prenatal vitamin

Making sure you get all your vitamins and minerals can help to increase your fertility, and also encourages an embryo to develop properly and at the right speed. Taking a folic acid supplement stimulates development of the brain, spinal chord and skull. If you are a really healthy eater, you can get the same vitamins, as well as folate, from foods.

Know your body

When you are trying to get pregnant, knowing when you are fertile is essential. You can achieve this in a variety of ways. Using an ovulation calendar, in combination with ovulation predictor kits, is one way. Monitoring your basal body temperature and your cervical mucus is another. Once you are aware of the timing of your ovulation, getting pregnant will be that much easier!


Exercise

Being in great shape increases your chances of conceiving. If you are obese, losing weight before you try to get pregnant will not only be good for your fertility, but it will also make your pregnancy and birth easier. While there is no reason not to continue working out throughout your pregnancy, being fit before you get pregnant means giving yourself a great gift.

Quit any bad health habits you have

At the risk of stating the obvious, I will mention that quitting smoking is very important before getting pregnant, and reducing your alcohol intake can help you get pregnant more quickly, as well as ensuring you give your embryo the best possible start when you do conceive.

Look around for health care providers

It is never too early to start looking for the OB or midwife or your choice, You may even want to see them for a medical check up that rules out any obvious medical problems. And because your health care provider will play a crucial role during your pregnancy, knowing that you trust and like him or her can make your life a lot more pleasant while you are carrying your baby.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Surreal Is Such An Overused Word


Where's my thesaurus? Too lazy to go on-line right now. Today is a monumental day in my life. I sat at my desk and wrote checks for the first grants to be distributed from Parenthood for Me.

If I was not paying attention, it could have felt very business-like. We send the money directly to the adoption agency or medical facility. Writing the grantees name in the memo line was the best part. I composed a brief letter to enclose with the check, and it's official. Fellow adoption and infertility comrades are able to move forward with plans to have the family they desire. Unbelievable.


The moment was surreal. Over the top. Hard for me to put into words what has been accomplished by so many people in such a short amount of time.


As the founder I am very personally invested in the non-profit. There are many goals that I hope to accomplish at certain points in the next five years, ten years. We continue to work very hard raising money for the endowment. One of my biggest dreams at the moment is to get national publicity in print or on TV. This coverage would help put PFM in front of millions of people. Even though there have been more informative articles and attention paid to the devastation of infertility, there have many just as many set-backs allowing the misperception of ART, IF, and adoption to dig further into the societial psyche.


There is so much work to be done.


Today was a good day. We are one step closer to making the extremely difficult experience of infertility and all it entails just a little more bearable. I wish I could have wrote a thousand checks today. Wouldn't that be great?


Progress will come. I am sure.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

400 Followers Giveaway Winner

JC won the drawing.
Thanks for participating. That was fun.
Check out what she won here.

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