Wednesday, January 25, 2012

My new hobby hates me.

 If you've known me for any significant period of time it's very likely that you've heard me complain joke about how I hate running. For years I've looked at those overachieving, 5am waking, seriously in shape people running on the side of the road with a bit of suspicion wondering what in the world they saw in running endless miles while their bodies all but gave out on the sidewalk.

 So when Hubby, one of those crazy avid runner's I just mentioned, approached me before Christmas about making one of my New Years resolutions about running, I kinda chuckled while simultaneously giving him the evil eye. He proposed that one of my resolutions be that I would train to run a 5k with him this May. Honestly, when he said it in the back of my head I was thinking "yeah, ok. (insert obnoxious sarcasm)", but my mouth said "Hm. Maybe I'll give it some thought." You see, he's been encouraging me for years now to get back in shape. Not necessarily for the physical benefits, but for the long term health benefits. I really didn't want to push off his idea again and honestly I wanted to like running. So, I figured I'd give it a shot.

Well, I gave it a shot alright and as it turns out I love running! It's exhilarating, exhausting and extremely gratifying all at once! You set your goals and work hard to meet them and when you do you feel on top of the world! The problem is running does not love me. Or maybe it's my knee's that don't like running. I haven't quite figured out who to lay the blame on yet. But, nonetheless after my last run, where I was feeling great and shaved 2 1/2 minutes of my total time and getting within 5 minutes of running a 5k in 30 mins (my goal), my knees started to really hurt. I went and had a gate analysis done and found that my ankles pronate pretty badly. After doing some further research it seems the mixture of old shoes, pronation and being a new runner has  probably caused Pes Anserine Bursitis. Ouch and what a bummer! Just when I've fallen in love with my arch nemesis I'm taken out of the game... for a short time. I've ordered new shoes that should be here today and I'm religiously taking Ibprof.en and icing my wimpy knees. I'm coming back running... wait for me!

On the note of incing though I wanted to share a penny pinching trick with you. Those flexible ice packs can get pretty pricy espcially if you need to buy more than one. But what if I told you I had a DIY trick for you? Do you have Ziploc bags and Dawn dish soap? You do? Then you my friend have just saved $10+ per ice pack!

I used freezer bags for the extra ziploc protection and bought the $1 sized bottle of Dawn.
Pour entire Dawn bottle into Qt sized bag, squeeze air out and freeze!

About five minute after you remove them from the freezer they're completely flexible! Take that expensive ice packs!

Hopefully with the icing, resting and new shoes I'll be back to running quickly!!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

11 Random things!

Ok! My Friend Ashley over at Expecting Miracles tagged me in this fun survay! Check it out!

1. Post these rules
2. You must post 11 random things about yourself
3. Answer the questions set for you in their post
4. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer
5. Go to their blog and tell them you've tagged them
6. Tag up to 11 people
. (I think the rule is to tag 11 people, but I like to break rules sometimes! *evil grin* actually I'm just too tired to keep going.)

My 11 Random Things:
1. I love staying up late. Before Lovebug was born, I was such a night owl that going to bed before 11 felt ridiculously early. But, since becoming a mom I've had to curb my night owl ways. Nowadays if I'm up past 11 I start to panic thinking about how tired I'm going to be the next day! 
2. I LOVE to eat! When Hubby and I go out to dinner I'm always the one ordering these giant meals while he orders a salad. When the waiter comes back we always get a huge laugh because they without fail hand us the wrong plate. My eye's are always bigger than my stomach :)
3. Up until recently, when I let my license lapse, I was a licensed Real Estate Sales Associate. I became an agent when Hubby and I were first married thinking it would be a great job to have and be able to stay home with my future kids. The only problem was I HATED it! lol! Oops.
4. I have 2 (twin) older brothers. One that lives in New York and travels the world playing music and one that passed away 9 years ago at age 21 from Bacterial Meningitis. Both are amazing, self taught musicians that I'm very proud of and miss everyday.
5. I did not inherit musical talents like my brothers.
6. I consider myself to be pretty athletic. I've always loved sports and being competitive. Some of my favorite memories are from playing competitive soccer when I was younger. Recently I started running and LOVE it! Blog post to come!
7. I have a really hard time organizing junk. Seriously, when I see random things laying around the house my brain spazzes out and I cannot process where to put them. Sounds ridiculous I know, but it's true. I'm working really hard on changing this since toddlers leave random stuff EVERYWHERE!
8. I had a really hard time in high school. Not because the curriculum was too hard, but because life got really hard around that time. I know a lot of people say they wish they could go back and relive their teenage years, but you couldn't pay me enough to go back. No.Way.
9. I love being outdoors! Take me hiking, running, biking or walking any day of the week before you buy me a pedicure! I hate being stuck inside for too long.
10. I always thought I wanted 4-5 kids. Hubby is the oldest of 5 and I love when the whole family is together. But, now I'm seeing that 4-5 kids is not for us. We both feel like 2(or 3) kids is our magic number(s).
11. I can tie a cherry stem with my tongue. (<--------my most random fact! LOL!) 

Ashley's 11 Random Questions for me:
1. What was your favorite childhood toy?
The day I was born my Dad went out and bought me a stuffed giraffe. I still have it to this day and he carried on the tradition by giving one to Lovebug when she was born as well! My other favorite childhood toy was a small white bear that had a rattle inside. I still have it as well and it's in some of the family pictures we took recently.

2. What do you like best about your husband/significant other?
 My Hubby is a great mixture of an extremely hard worker and giant child! LOL! We have a lot of fun together and share so many interests and at the same time he always working hard to provide us with a great life.

3. What is your favorite dessert?
Hmmmm. I love anything where fruits and chocolates meet. Chocolate covered strawberries. Chocolate covered bananas. I also love brownies, cakes, cookies. I'll eat pretty much anything ;)

4. Describe one of your most memorable vacation experiences.
 Hubby and I traveled a lot before Lovebug was born, but this past summer when all 3 of us went to North Carolina and Georgia was probably my most memorable.  It was our first family vacation and we did some of our favorite things (hiking, mountain biking, visiting family) and we had our first visit with Lovebug's birthfamily!

5. What do you like to do to relax/unwind?
Just sit in one place! hehe! I feel like I move all day long. At night I like to curl up on the couch with my husband and watch TV or get online. I just need a chance to veg for a while.
6.What is the most random thing in your closet?
An old family bible from my dads side. It's from 1854 and it has everything in it from an 1880's obituary, to a gum wrapper, to multiple locks of different colored hair! It's undoubtedly one of the weirdest and coolest things I own!!

7.If money wasn't an object, what "luxury items" would you put in your house?
A fireplace, a pool, a live in chef and maid. Honestly, if money wasn't an object I'd love to live on land somewhere in North Georgia, Tennessee or the Carolinas with a moderate 5,000 sq ft house.... equipped with the aforementioned items! ;)

8.What trait do you admire in others that you wish you possessed?
The whole organization thing. I can get house work get away from me fast. I really admire those who seem to always have spotless houses!

9.What is your favorite fast-food restaurant?
Chick-Fil-A. Hands down.

10.You are having dinner with 3 of your favorite celebrities. Who are you with and what are you talking about?
Hmmm...You know there are certain celebrities that I like in terms of they always have great movies or music, but when it comes down to it they're all so pretentious and self centered! I don't know that I would actually enjoy having a conversation with any of them. 

11. What is your current favorite brand of shoe?
 Well, I'm so not into fashion so my favorite current shoe brand is Brooks! Haha! I just ordered my new running shoes and I'm so excited to get them and see how they help my improve my pace!

The people I'm tagging are:
Amber @ Bumbers Bumlings 
My 11 Random Questions for You:
1. Favorite thing to do in your "spare" time?
2. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
3. If you could choose any dream job what would it be?
4. If you have a guilty pleasure, what is it?
5. What has been the hardest question you've been confronted with regarding your childs adoption?
6. If you could meet anyone dead or alive, who would it be?
7. Favorite restaurant? 
8. What book are you currently reading or do you want to read?
9. If you struggled with IF, do you ever feel that people regard your decision to adopt as a "last resort" or "second best"? If so, how do you deal with it?
10. Whats to your immediate left?
11. If someone gave you 1 million dollars, how would you use it?
*By the way, I totally understand if you don't have the time to play along. I would love to learn more about you, though, if you can find the time!  And if you want to play along and I didn't tag you, consider yourself tagged!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Strangers intertwined

Have you ever thought about the reality of open adoption in the sense that from the get go your really just strangers suddenly intertwined in life. Up until this monumental point in both of your lives, you probably never knew the other existed. You have no idea how the other thinks, how they process their emotions, what their interests are, what they really hate. Sometimes you come from completely different backgrounds. Sometimes your backgrounds are eerily similar. You may find immediate commonalities only to find over time that you have just as many differences. You may click like you've been best friends forever or maybe you know from the start that this relationship will take major work.

You know, as obvious as it is, I'm not sure I understood the depth of this concept until we were in the thick of our open adoption.

The fact with open adoption is, with the birth of your child, suddenly 2 unconnected worlds become connected in a powerful way. On one side it's the most joyous occasion imaginable, on the other side it's quite possibly the most painful.

I'll be honest, open adoptions are hard. But, not for the reasons your Aunt Wilma "who once knew someone who adopted" thinks. It's not hard to share the joys of your child with her birthmother. It's not hard to look into your baby's eyes and know that she doesn't just have 4 grandparents who love her so, she has 6(or 8!) or that she not only has one Mommy who thinks she's the best thing on earth she has two. It's not hard to see your childs other family holding her close and loving her so. Those things are what make open adoptions worth it. The things that make you push through the tough times.

What's hard is knowing how to blend separate lives with different raging emotions on each side. It's hard to know what your open adoption should look like. It's hard to not panic slightly when you don't hear anything for a while especially when you've been sending out communication. It's hard to put your own emotions to the wayside and try and imagine what the other is going through. It's hard to even try to imagine what they go through.

Now I probably should clarify because I'm sure some of you might be wondering what happened? Why the somber post? Sorry to disappoint, but nothing has happened. Well, no bad interactions or anything of the sort. Just distancing and what I imagine are normal OA patterns of settling into reality. Honestly, some of the hardest parts of this is maybe learning how impatient I am or how I let my mind race to the worst case scenario first. It's just so important to me(us). It's sometimes hard to keep these emotions in check, but it's a must for OA survival.

In the end, the potential outcome is well worth it. What I invision in the future is beautiful Lovebug surrounded by her entire family as she grows up, as she graduates, as she gets married and as she becomes a Mommy herself. But, in the world of open adoptions it doesn't matter what one party invisions. I can only hope that we both have similar goals for sweet Lovebug and our open adoption. But, sometimes it's hard to tell. We are, after all, just strangers intertwined.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Are you ready? It's potty time!

I'm not sure I'm ready.

I'm not totally convinced Lovebug is ready.

But, she's giving us some tell tales clues that she's at least ready to feel it out.

I think we're going to just take it slow. Give her opportunities to to try it out and not make a huge deal about it. She's just so little still and I think making any sort of rigorous attempt to "potty train" at this point would be silly and will just be stressful for all of us.

So why push the issue? Yeah, don't worry, I can't find a why either. We're just going to take it slow. :)

So then there's the potty option. Potty seat or potty chair? I see the pros and cons to both:

Potty Chair (free standing):
  • At her level to get on and off
  • Maybe less daunting than "The big potty"
  • Portable! (the idea of her using public potties at this point is disgusting!)
  • It's HER potty. I think she'd like having a special little throne of her own.
  • One more thing to clean
  • Because its at her level it would be easier to mess with
  • One more transition to a big potty eventually
Potty Seat (attaches to big potty)
  • Already on the big potty so no huge transitions
  • Somewhat portable if we're going to family or friends houses
  • Intimating more grown up behavior because she sees us use the big potty too
  • No mess to clean up 
  • Could fall off
  • As she gets older is may be harder to get on and off alone

Well, after talking about this list we've decided to go with a potty seat. Lovebug transitions well to new things, so I'm not so much worried about that, but frankly I don't want to clean anymore than I currently do! Plus, she will already sit on the big potty with me holding her, so why stop the momentum? I still don't know what to do about public toilets (although this is still way off for us). I mean, I guess you use those paper seat covers, but still. Ew! How do you juggle all your stuff, putting the baby up on the seat, wiping and holding the babies hands so they don't touch anything?! I need more hands.

So anyhow, once she gets up from an apparent marathon nap today (seriously, we're currently working on 4 hours) we're headed off to Walmart to purchase her very own Street potty seat!!

*Tear* My baby is getting too big!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Open Adoption Round Table #33

The newest Open Adoption Roundtable prompt is up! Head over to Production Not Reproduction to read every ones responses!

"What did you learn about open adoption in 2011?"

Wow. I'm not sure I can contain all of what I've learned into one post, but I'll write about the few things that stuck out the most.

Letting go.

Letting go of fear. Fear of opening up too much and then fear of somehow losing touch. I let go of the first fear very early and then when I did the second one appeared. Fear does one thing and that's distract you from what God wants in you life: obedience and faith. I'm really trying to put those things first and trusting God to bring me through my fears.

Letting go of expectations. I think this is a big one for me. I feel like I put high expectations on our OA. Maybe expecting too much. I see now how that's really not fair. *We* may envision things evolving a certain way, but that doesn't mean everybody involved does and that's ok. I guess I'm learning to be content with whats happening and not stewing over whats not.

I've also learned that there are no two OA's alike. Each OA is comprised of individuals who bring their own strengths and weaknesses into the relationship. This goes back to being content and not heaping expectations on your OA. I've done it. I've seen other people's OA situations and really wanted certain aspects for us. But, that's not how it works. We love our Lovebugs birth family and we're happy to have them in our lives in what ever way we get them. <------Learning to be content!

2011 is really just the start for us. We're still getting our bearings and testing the waters. Learning every step of the way.

Overall, we had a great year! 2011 brought us many joys and we're super excited to see what 2012 brings!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

All is well

 I've had a few sweet friends check in on me since I temporarily closed my blog a few weeks ago (which, ps, was really sweet of them!) and all is well here! I just needed a short break and time away. But, I'm back and hoping to whip up some mind bending (or at least half way decent) blog posts in the new future!

Stay tuned!