Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I Have the Best...

Social Worker ever!!! Mrs. S has completed the draft of our homestudy since our last meeting a week ago! I am truly amazed and touched she was able to (and willing) to work so hard on our homestudy over the long holiday weekend. What an amazing woman!! She sent us the draft to check for errors (which I got teary through a part or two) and we have already sent it back to her. We are one step closer to our referral!! I couldn't be happier at the moment!

Thanks to Amy for the Liebster Award. I promise to do my part soon. oxo

This morning I had a note wedged in my classroom door. I have to tell you, my heart initially dropped because I assumed it was from a student's family who has been having trouble. But...it wasn't! *phew* It was a letter from an old Kindergarten student of mine who had moved away when she was in second grade ( I also had her younger sister!) I felt very touched that this now fifth grader had popped by to drop me a note. I will definitely be sending her mail since she left her mailing address. What a sweet way to start my morning.

Hope your week is off to a roaring start. I am already counting down the days til winter break.


Saturday, November 26, 2011


Thanksgiving was very low key.  I was thankful it was because I actually wasn't in much of a thankful kind of mood. Horrified to find fleas on my cat the night before...ew. Much better now....so thankful for Frontl.ine and flea combs. I used to get more satisfaction with the task of coming the nasty little critters out of pet fur...now I find it disgusting. I used to be able to pull them off the comb with my fingers...not so much now.  I used a piece of ripped paper to knock em into my container of hot soapy water. I only managed to get 7...one off my bed (it was dying but still....) My cat is quite well groomed right now and I am hopeful our flea problem is almost done. Mad at myself for forgetting to get the flea meds from Twinnie...who offered me hers weeks ago when we found fleas on the dogs. We have lived here for almost 5 years and we haven't had flea issues in a long while. All the ones I found today (4) were dead...I think one got away.

Wow..back to Thanksgiving.......my Mom and Grandma came up. Hubby made a lovely turkey and green bean casserole. I made my sister's potato dish...except I slightly undercooked the potatoes...oops. So they weren't quite the same but lemons and capers make many things great!! We ate and visited and I tried giving them an update on the adoption.And later we watched some of Harry Potter after my pups put on a mini fashion show.

Let me premise this rant by saying...I love my mom. I haven't told my mom everything in detail, just most of it.  Mainly because I get frustrated. This is why.  It seems my mom likes to know a lot about everything.  I'm not saying she doesn't but I don't always appreciate her trying to always have the last word. And if it's something she doesn't know about or isn't sure about she'll say something anyways..like "Oh, I thought it was something like that."  I've noticed that she also seems to turn lots of conversations back to her.  And if she did it to my sister with breastfeeding advice (remember, we are adopted and were not breastfed) she is certainly going to town with our adoption process. Actually, my irritation started with the infertility treatments, I would say something and she would rattle off an "I know, it's hard" or talk about her injections she was getting at the time.  I wish I didn't feel so frustrated and I know she's upset that I'm not telling her things. I literally could feel myself fighting over my words at the table yesterday. I wanted to tell them everything and instead just gave the overview.  I know we will need to have a discussion about this but I am not one for confrontations and I don't want to cause a bigger issue.  Things got really bad with my mom after my parents separated and divorced and I don't want to go back to anything remotely close to those days.

Anyways...we did not do any crazy black Friday shopping. I slept in since I was up really late with a migraine/sinus headache. I had a weird dream about being transferred to another school in my district (even though the school in my dream looked nothing like it). Odd.  We returned some things to some small shops and did a teensy bit of shopping. Nothing big.  I told Hubby I think this might be another rough holiday....but we shall see.

In an attempt to get myself into the holiday spirit, we put up our Christmas tree. I'll post a pic of it later.  While decorating we "watched" and I sung and spat off lines to one of my most favorite Christmas movies...The Muppet Christmas Carol. Ahh, love it.  Here's one of my favorite songs!:

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Gobble, Gobble!

I have a lot to be thankful for this year...a wonderful family, loving Hubby, great friends, a warm home, furry critters, a job which I love, etc., etc. I am thankful for this community and for you.  Most of all I am thankful to have something wonderful to look forward to now and in the sometime near future. I do want to acknowledge the fact that another holiday rolls by and I am without something I really want...a child to share our love with.  Hubby and I went shopping yesterday at the mall and I think I held back stinging tears twice seeing families. I even said how I can't wait to "cry" tears because I can't wait to be like that family...and I do feel that way. But I know I'm not quite 100% there yet and my tears are more for my jealousy and sadness of what I currently can't have(grrr..go away yucky feelings). I want to hold my child and I want to see their little nose and wipe their tears. Sometimes I don't feel sad and some days I do.  A friend I was introduced to on an online group found out her little one no longer had a heartbeat today and I am reading of some of you lovelies out there dealing with similar pain. It makes me angry and sad for you (and me) and I wish things weren't so hard. Sending love to you all.

 I forgot to mention two things on Monday's post.

1.To celebrate our final homestudy we had Korean food for dinner. Seriously, I think it was the 3rd, maybe 4th time I have ever eaten it.  I am Korean by birth but I never ate it growing up.  I have got to up my spicy food intake and I felt embarrassed when the lady assumed I would want spicy sauce of my hot pot and I quickly said no. I never added any...but did add in kimchee. Little by little...I did enjoy it though and I'm happy it's close to home. Can't wait to take my sister there!

2. After dinner my common thread bracelet fell off.  I noticed it was loose a day or two ago but didn't think it would have fallen off. Hubby thought it was kind of monumental since we just finished our homestudy.  Crazy huh? I will tell you I cried a few tears and insisted on making a new one...my wrist looks funny without it and IF will be a part of my life forever. Not that I will wear it forever, but I think I still need it now.

Here is today's yesterday's news.. we paid the rest of our homestudy fees and the country admin fee. We also got some clarification from our placing agency on what Mrs. S (our social worker) should put in our homestudy for the age of child(ren) we would like to adopt...0-18 months at time of referral.  Hopefully, this puts us past the age of having to redo some of paperwork, but we shall see. We also applied to refinance our mortgage which was not a part of today's plan (neither was our original drive by attempt to reorder checks) but it happened (and took forever..."10-15 minutes my ass"....try an hour and 15!) and we are thankful. It's something we have been wanting to do and couldn't for whatever reasons. We ended the night by eating cereal for dinner (hah!) and went and watched The Muppets, which I loved. Ahh, I love good days.

I hope you have a nice Thanksgiving, fairly pain free and full of yummy food. Ours will be very low key with my Mom and Grandma. Cheers to you!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Happy ICLW!!

I am excited to be a part of this month's ICLW..I think I haven't participated the last two times or so since it's timing was not the best with my schedule (ie conferences last month!) and I knew I would be a sucky participant. But I have the week off this week due to two furlough days and Thanksgiving break. So welcome any new readers and cheers to those bloggy friends who are already here.  The last few months have been hard and I am so thankful I have had you all to lean on.  This community continues to amaze me.

Just a brief summary of us. Hubby and I met in 2001 and were married in 2006.  I am a Kindergarten teacher and my Hubby owns and operates Halloween stores. Started trying for a baby in spring of '08 and this led us to our IF clinic in August of '09.  We did 5 IUI's all with BFN's in the next year. In August of '10 we did out first fresh IVF which ended with a BFN. We did two rounds of FET, the first one with a BFN and the last one with our first ever BFP!!! We sadly miscarried around 8 weeks due to a blighted ovum.  During our battle with IF we also started our journey with international adoption. In the summer of 2010 we went to our first orientation with an adoption agency.  We met with two others and decided on our homestudy agency in March of this year.  Since then we have completed all four of our homestudies....our fourth and final was today (and it went super!!)  We are using a placing agency in Arizona and I cannot be more excited about the future.

The next few months and weeks will certainly be exciting and busy. I hope you'll stick around to see what's next for us!

A friend of mine posted this on her FB and I love it and thought I would share.  oxo to all of you!

Thursday, November 17, 2011


Today Hubby drove all of our completed papers to our homestudy agency.  I loved hearing the excitement in his voice when I called and he said "We're ready to rock-and-roll!" A handshake, some kind words and we're all set on the paperchase front for our final homestudy on Monday.

Earlier this evening we celebrated my brother-in-law's birthday at an Indian restaurant. I need to up my tolerance of spicy food. yikes. But quite yummy and the restaurant had some cool style....fiber optic lights and glitter walls!!

After arriving home, I was able to read my letters of references. I had read all but three as of last night. I cried reading them again and I feel so fortunate to have such wonderful friends who were more than willing to write us a letter.

I am more than thrilled. We are one huge step closer to building our family!! The next few weeks and months will be filled with many emotions and I am so glad I have you to share them with.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Frustration and Checklists and Joy.

To start with Friendsgiving was a success!! Yummy food and good times with friends. Such a fun idea, hopefully next year we will repeat! But of course my fun day can't go by without some upset...so please don't mind my rant to follow.....or if you do...please skip!

Friendsgiving...minus my bestie..she's taking the pic!
 You may remember my friend/co-worker whom with I had some big problems earlier this year. To recap, she blamed me for losing friendships because of my difficulty with her pregnancy. In my defense, I really felt like time was all I needed.  It felt as though things were getting better. I went to her baby shower (which was awful for me) and visited after the baby was born.  She texted me about the miscarriage and then proceeded to not text me back when I answered her.  She didn't send me a baby announcement.  I saw her a week before her leave ended and I will admit it was awkward..I said hi to baby but for some reason couldn't really talk with her. I even texted her last weekend, telling her how I was thinking of her since her maternity leave was ending and I knew she would be sad. This past week was odd, didn't see her much between her pump sessions and leaving right after school was over.

Anyways....after our glorious Friendsgiving, she sent me and another friend of mine a message on fac.ebook (damn thing!) saying she was de-friending us since she was "sick of feeling hurt and sad over your posts/pictures" and that she's accepted that we are colleagues and not true to the word friends anymore but she can't help feeling hurt by our posts/pictures.  I have told Hubby that I am so over all of this many times before. I am, but at the same time I am hurt and upset.  If I don't even qualify to be her fb friend then I guess it's pretty bad.  I did think about inviting her but as two of the people in the room really wouldn't want to be with her and I don't think she would have wanted to either. I guess maybe I should have invited her, but I really didn't think she would come.  I wish she could just give me a break. Please just let me adjust to your comments about sleep deprivation or having to pump. I wonder if she even knew how I cringed when I found out our first beta was on her due date and how relieved I was her son was born 2 days earlier.  I didn't want to have an event to tie another disappointment to.  I wonder if she has really thought how hard this has been for me. I don't want her sympathy. I just wish she could "see" why this has been hard for me.  Everyone's pregnancy is hard for me, not just hers. I cried more around Halloween since that was supposed to be our biggest first milestone...12 weeks and the end of another season. Seeing families at restaurants or out and about is hard for me. I have two friends who are due in April and May. I already know those will be very difficult to swallow since I should be celebrating milestones with them.  But I'm not and I am trying not to dwell on those sad feelings. I have bright things to look ahead to but this shit has reared it's ugly head again and it makes me sad. I'm sad that to her our friendship is over and although I can say it wasn't at all close to perfect I was still hoping it was fixable.  I have tears falling now.

On to happier things....Adoption updates.....lots of things being checked off for our homestudy. We have almost all of our documents notarized... all 4 reference letters to be notarized on Thursday.  Medical papers are completed and notarized. I went on Monday and took care of mine, Hubby went back today to have his TB test looked at and his papers notarized. I (finally) have my employment verification papers notarized  I am hoping to get things to the agency on Thursday afternoon. I also received an affidavit today to use my passport as a replacement for my Korean birth certificate which I sadly have no clue where mine is. Obtaining a copy is not as simple as a US replacement.  I will contact the Korean Embassy in D.C. in the near future so I can actually look at a real copy one day...I know it's in a box somewhere!!  We will notarize the affidavit on Thursday as well. Homestudy is Monday evening.

I spoke with our agency's program coordinator for a chunk on Friday and we have decided to use the placing agency in Arizona.  I still look at the other placing agency's waiting children in Minnesota but we know traveling to Arizona from California is much easier for any events we may want to attend in the future. Also, our homestudy agency is quite familiar with them and that helps things along as well. I have no connections to either but our hearts (and minds!) are telling us this is the better option.  They are both friendly and I have had more phone contact with the Arizona agency than Minnesota.  Some news...Korea is raising their fee to help with their foster care costs and so the placing agency is raising their fees as well..total $4300.  But that's what it is and why is another story. BUT are you ready for the best news??!!  Referral time for us is just a few months away!! Most likely no more than 6 months *crossing fingers!*  When I talked to the agency a few weeks ago she had told me about 2 months for a boy and longer for a girl. We cannot specify a gender (and we don't mind either way!). Wheee! I am so thrilled and stoked that I may be indeed planning a big trip this summer to Korea and Japan. Unfortunately, not to pick up our child but to sight see, submerse ourselves in and learn more about Korean culture and visit my dear friend in Japan.  And hopefully get to meet and visit with our little baby, since he or she will still be a "little" baby.  I have stated before I can't pass up the opportunity to meet our little one as soon as possible.  When we travel to take our baby home it is possible he or she will be 15 months and older, since travel time is estimated 12 months from referral.  I can't wait til the moment we meet.

I think I will go to bed and dream about our upcoming travels. My days at school are getting rougher with my new student and I need to be rested so I don't break down at school while "trying" to teach.

Leaving you with a photo of my happy buns....Frank (black and white) and Gerty (grey).
Having a Lady & the Tramp moment....

  Hugs to all of you!!!! oxo

Friday, November 11, 2011


Wow. First of all, I am exhausted!! First week of extended day for my kinders with an increasingly difficult new student and lots of emotions this week, make for a very tired me! I commented to Hubby earlier.."It's ONLY 11:15?! It feels like 3am!" (and I might as well mentioned, I passed out on the couch for a good 40 minutes!) Hooray for a 3 day weekend....for which I am uber excited for.

On the adoption front, yesterday Hubby had his physical and will go in on Monday for his labs.  I went in today and lucky me (thank you IF) I have had all of my labs done over the last two years to cover all the tests. I don't need any pokes at all and I find it just a smidgen funny.  These forms need to be notarized and my papers are in the medical office until I go next week to have them notarized by my FIL (who is notarizing our documents to help us save money).  Although this saving has been a thorn in my side the last few weeks.

Originally today was supposed to be a deep cleaning day. Our 4th and final homestudy (!!) is now going to be on the 21st instead of the 14th due to paperwork needing to be notarized.  Hopefully, my FIL will follow through and we will have it all done by mid week. So, we get an extra week to finish a few things (like our remodeled, almost finished upstairs bathroom) since beginning Sunday, Hubby should be done with all the physical store stuff!! Double hooray!!!  I am really happy to be moving along with our adoption. It is nice to have something to look forward to and feel excited about again.  Today I sent in paperwork to the placing agency we will most likely be using. I have a phone appointment tomorrow with our homestudy agency to firm up our decision, although it is most likely already made!

We are also having our first (hopefully annual!) Friendsgiving on Saturday.  I don't know about you, but there is something special about cooking holiday foods and I always want to share with friends.  However, for obvious reasons, everyone is always busy those days! So I thought this year I would invite my dearest friends over to my home and we would have our own Thanksgiving.....Friendsgiving it is! I have a lot to be thankful for and their friendship has been so meaningful these last few years, especially the last few months. I truly don't know where I would be if these ladies weren't around to pick me up off the floor.

In the morning, I am watching my nieces until early afternoon since their daycare/preschool is closed. Lucky me! I got a three minute hug/snuggle from my youngest one on Wednesday night. I haven't spent as much time with them recently, I have been so busy with school. Time to change that back! I simply adore these girls, they are my loves.

My nieces Little P and Big C at Muir Woods earlier this fall.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Back to Zero

....and I thought I would be happier about that little number. I was surprised when I started crying, part relief and part sadness. I realize that (for now) this is the end of a very long and rough journey.  But a beautiful dream has been floating along with us on that journey and I know it's time to make it come true.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Holy Crap..update!

I can't believe it has been such a long time since my last post. A lot has happened since then and I have tried to at least read some of your blogs and haven't been the best. Lots of things going on with you, thanks for stopping by and leaving some kinds words, those I did see. oxo

So since my last post I started having what I thought was another round of Monday's bleeding. Turned out not to but was scary anyways. A very good friend of mine offered to drive to the rink where hubby was playing ice hockey (it was in a another nearby city, she lives there) since I thought it was starting again. Phew. I have had two beta's: 10/10 368 down from 7364, 10/24 10...almost there) and I go back tomorrow for the last one. I have never wanted something to be zero more in my entire life.  I am so ready to move past all this. U/s this week, I am hoping for Tuesday.

Speaking of moving on, I am doing pretty good.  It was really hard for me at first and it gets easier everyday. I think I felt as if I really didn't have much to say.  I am bitter about it still....it doesn't seem fair but then again none of this IF shit does.  I still cry and in fact I cried last night. I am so relieved that Halloween is over which means the stores are in the process of being packed up for next year. It also means that Hubby will be around more and our life can slowly return back to normal.

My life has been (sadly) centered around school. I just finished conferences last week (two no shows!!) but my life has consisted of comments and report cards for the last two weeks. I also received a new student (another boy!-that makes 15) who is very difficult due to a horrific life so far. My heart goes out for him but he is making teaching very difficult. My best gals took me to Disn.eyland the weekend of the 21st and that was an interesting weekend. Lots of fun but it had a really rough start thanks to my FIL. But that's another post..I have to think about posting it.  Halloween in Kindergarten is lots of fun. My classroom looked killer with tissue paper ghosts everywhere.  I realized I never posted a pic of my classroom, so here you go!

tissue paper Kindergarten ghost creations....love them!

Halloween setup in room K1!

  We are excited to move forward with our international adoption with Korea.  I emailed our social worker to find out if she had found out if the agency was going to have us wait 3 or 6 months after our last cycle.  We initially told her it wasn't successful and then my conscience made me feel dishonest and we told her everything the next day about our last round. She was still okay with pursuing the 3 month wait and it was approved by our homestudy agency!! And to make it more exciting we have our 4th homestudy set for next Monday!! I am waiting to hear if we need to reschedule it, since we are still in the process of collecting paperwork.  If any of you know how to get a copy of a Korean birth certificate, please let me know! I have looked online and can't find much. I have an email into the agency for more ideas, next is calling the consulate.  Our four reference letters are in process (two are done, just waiting to be notarized this week) and the other two should be done by Friday.

Off to bed....up early for labs and my first day of extended day with my kiddos.  Why do I have a feeling I will come home and crash (after my meeting of course!).... Hooray for a short week!