Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Tuesday Talk: Infertility Update

Hi everyone! It's been a while since I've updated on our fertility situation, so I figured now, at the new year, would be a great time to do so.

I'm joining the Tuesday Talk Link-UP with Ashley and Erika, so I'll do a quick update for anyone new: 

My husband, Lee, and I married in 2012, and started trying to have children in December 2013. We planned an awesome trip to Europe (Rome, Venice, Munich, Berlin, and Paris), and assumed it'd be our last big trip as a family of 2). We quickly realized that wasn't the case. 
This is us in Rome on Christmas Eve 2013

I'll skip forward to January 2015 when we did our first IUI. It was not successful, and we went on to do 5 more between February and June. 6 total IUIs, and they all failed. We were feeling exhausted and defeated after those 6 months and decided we needed a break. 

Throughout the rest of that year, we did some natural family planning, and took a break from fertility treatments for over a year. During this time I started the MBA program at our alma mater, the University of Southern Indiana. We went back to our fertility doctor in the fall of 2016 and began planning for IVF. I graduated with my Master's Degree in December 2016. We had our egg retrieval in January 2017, and on Valentine's Day, we had our embryo transfer. 
Here's us on Valentine's Day, the day of our embryo transfer

THE IVF WAS SUCCESSFUL, and we welcomed our sweet baby boy, William (Liam) Andrew, on October 6. He has been a JOY to our lives, and we love being his parents. 
I was so lucky to have a pleasant pregnancy. I loved being pregnant! 

This little cutie is our favorite.

Now that he is 15 months old, we know without a doubt that we want more children. So for now, we are trying on our own, using some of the natural family planning methods we learned before. We're not being super structured with it, though. I'm being aware of signs of ovulation, and we're being intentional with our timing, but I'm not keeping any kind of chart. Just keeping track of when my cycles end and begin. 
We love being his parents 

We don't want all of the stress and daily pressure that we put on ourselves in the past. After earning my MBA, I was fortunate to be given an opportunity to be a full-time business professor at our local community college, which has been a great transition for our family. I have a much more flexible schedule, and get to spend all of my Fridays, school breaks, and summers off work with Liam.  That being said, we've decided if we don't get pregnant on our own, we'll call our fertility doctor over the summer. If we're going to do IVF again, we might as well use time to our advantage. If we go that route, we'll try to do IVF in August or September, so that if successful, the baby would be born early summer, allowing me a 'maternity leave' without actually having to take time off of work. 
We thank God every single day for giving us Liam. Being a family of 3 is so much fun. 

So we are spending our time enjoying our sweet boy, and pray that God provide us with peace and guidance with growing our family. 

Monday, January 14, 2019

Weekend Recap 1/12/19

Happy Monday!! I started back to work from Christmas break last Monday, but today is my first day of classes! I'm so excited!!

We had a nice weekend at home, and I'm starting the semester feeling excited and refreshed.

On Friday, it began snowing and was COLD. We opted to have a quiet night at home.
After dinner Liam was messy, but it was kinda early for pjs, so Lee put a random mix of comfy clothes on him (Christmas pants, haloween shirt)... but Liam didn't want to stay still on the changing table, so the shirt got buttoned later... over the pants HAHA! We've been occasionally having Liam wear shoes in the house to encourage him to walk more flat footed, and less on his toes. 

Saturday morning we woke up and had breakfast, then we got all bundled up and headed outside.
This boy LOVES when we have bacon for breakfast. We also had French Toast and strawberries, but he was most excited about bacon. 

Lee and I took turns pulling Liam around in his new sled. He was gifted this sled for Christmas, along with his snow suit. I'm so glad we got to use them this year. 

First time eating snow :)

We built a snowman and named him Olaf 

Not our best selfie, but still turned out cute. 
After playing in the snow, we came in and played inside. Saturday evening we ran some errands at Hobby Lobby, Sam's Club, Bed Bath and Beyond, and ended with some dinner at Olive Garden.

He enjoyed OG.
On Sunday, we went to church, redeemed our reward for a free coffee at Starbucks, and came home. We played at home, and Lee and I took turns doing some work. Lee and Liam ran to Lowe's in the afternoon, and Lee and I both did some work while Liam napped.

We had Mexican chicken rice veggie bowls, and Liam was pretty happy about them. 
We ended our weekend with a short visit to my sister in law and  brother in law's house. My brother-in-law's birthday is today, so we brought his birthday card by, and caught up with them for a bit, and played with our two nieces. I failed and didn't take any pics, but trust me when I say, our nieces are adorable :).

Sleep training with Liam still went well this weekend, despite our daily schedule being a little off since Lee and I weren't going to work. Now that we can get him to go to bed at a decent time in his own bed, we need to work on keeping him in his own bed at night... after that we'll try to tackle nap time. 

This is going to be a somewhat busy week for me since classes start, but it shouldn't be too busy for our family as far as the evenings go. I'm looking forward to meeting all of my new students this week! Happy Monday everyone, have a great week! :)

Friday, January 11, 2019

Friday Favorites 1/11/2019

Happy New Year, everyone! This is my first Friday Favorites post of 2019.

My first favorite of the week is from Sunday. My parents visited last weekend and we went to iHop after church. I honestly think this may have been my first time at iHop? I got the bananas foster french toast and it was delicious. Liam got nothing because he slept the whole time. He was so cute, but I felt a little guilty that he was missing out on breakfast bc he would've enjoyed it.

My next favorite is one I've already shared on Instagram, but it is too funny not to share again. Liam had his 15 month appointment with his pediatrician on Monday, and he had to get shots, so we took him out for french fries and ice cream afterwards. This is the face he makes when I ask him to smile. 

It's been a busy week for my big boy. First week back after 3 weeks of Christmas break, new baby sitter on Monday, doctor visit on Monday as well, so by Tuesday, he was TIRED! He fell asleep on our way home from the baby sitter's Tuesday evening. 

Lee had a meeting and I had big plans for Liam and I to have a date night of the pizza truck, but I needed to stop at home and change out of my heels first. This is what I saw in my back seat when I stopped at home, so we opted to stay home for dinner. 

My next favorite thing of the week is my new coffee station in my office! I was gifted this pretty k-mini for Christmas from my in-laws, and I have coffee, hot cocoa, chai latte, and all kinds of cream and flavor to keep me going this semester. 

My second to last favorite is from dinner last night! I made my Sweet Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts as a side, but this time, I also added some purple potatoes! I bought a medley ba of small potatoes from Aldi and it had red, yellow, and purple potatoes in it. I picked a few purple ones out to cook with this dish. It was pretty, and delish. We ate it along side some grilled chicken.

My final fav is another Christmas gift, that we've put to use. Our new clock! It says, "Time spent with family is worth every minute". We've recenly finished remodeling our basement, and now it's time to decorate. We are going to hang two 11x14 framed family pictures on each side of the clock, once we find some frames that we like. 

With this being my first week back to work after Christmas vacation, we've keep things pretty quiet around here, as you can tell from my Friday Favorites. Lee and I are really trying to get Liam on a good sleep schedule, which means we've been crying it out this week at bed time (both me and Liam), but so far we're making positive progress. Liam was tired last night, and it only took him TWO minutes to fall asleep once we left his bedroom.

We don't have much planned this weekend, and that hardly ever happens! I'm hoping we can take some time to do a little shopping for basement decor and picture frames. On Saturday, there's a chance we may get a little snow, so if that's the case, we will get to take Liam out to play in it. 

Have a great weekend everyone! 

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Let's Look! Cozy spots 1/9/18

Happy hump day, friends! Today I'm linking up with  Shay & Erika for a new link up called Let’s Look! This month we're sharing cozy spots in our homes. You can save this photo and link up as well. 

The coziest spots in our home can vary depending who in my family you ask: 

For me, I'm cozy anytime I can snag some baby snuggles. Both of these pics were just taken on the couch in our upstairs living room. 

Liam has made himself comfy in his high chair several times lately. This usually happens at lunch when he's fought off a nap all morning. 

I think all 3 of us agree that snuggling in bed is pretty cozy. 

As you can see, being together as a family is pretty cozy for us, but as far as the coziest SPOT goes, I'd have to name it our basement living room. This room has been under construction off and on for a couple YEARS. Lee did most of hte construction himself, so it took a while because he just did a little bit here and there as he had free time (and we all know how hard it is to get some free time, especially with a baby at home!)

Now our construction is mostly finished, and we can enjoy our time down there. We have a fireplace and TV downstairs, and a sectional couch. We bough the couch with our basement hangout in mind, and ALL sections of the couch recline, except for the corner, AND they are big enough that Lee and I can sit in one section together and snuggle. 

The room is L shaped, and the long part is a living room, and the short part of the L is Liam's playroom, but as you can see above, the toys end up ALL over the place. We wouldn't have it any other way! 

Next month we'll look at our favorite reads, and I'm excited to share and hopefully find some great new suggestions from everyone else! 

Monday, January 7, 2019

Christmas 2018

Merry Christmas, friends! This post is loaded with pics from our holiday celebrations. Let's dive right in:

The weekend before Christmas, my mother-in-law hosted a Grinch themed party for some family and friends. He party planning skills are top-notch... she really could be a professional. She had food, drinks, games and prizes for the kids, and more. She thought of it all. 

I snapped this cute pic: even Liam got to join in on a few of the games.
The kids threw heart shaped bean bags into the Grinch's heart shaped hole in the box. 
Lee is a member of a local men's group that has a pretty extensive collection of costumes that they wear to events, parades, etc. He borrowed the Grinch costume and showed up at the party. The kids were excited!

On Christmas Eve Eve we went to our church's candlelight service, which was beautiful, as always, and then went to eat at our favorite Mexican restaurant with my mother in law, and 2 friends who also joined us for church. I failed to take pics of this fun. 

Christmas Eve started with a brunch celebration at my in-laws for my husband's immediate family. I didn't take many pics, but we did get this one of us 3. Since it was brunch, we wore or matching elf jammies. 
Liam is really into raising his arms as  way to show everyone that he is "sooo big!" 
That evening, we went to Lee's aunt's house for dinner with his mom's side of the family. I always enjoy this gathering because we get a chance to visit with several of Lee's cousins who live out of state. 
Lee's gma is Christmas Eve, so we sag Happy birthday to her. Many of her great-grand kids surrounded her. 

We captured this cute moment of Liam and his great-grandpa playing "drums" on the chair. 
 Lee's mom and aunt arranged a live nativity for Lee's gma (since it was her birthday). All of the 6 little kids shown are great-grand kids. Liam was too hot in his little drummer boy costume, so we stripped him down, and he really was only the drummer boy long enough to snap this pic. He was not feeling it. Notice baby Jesus? That's my 3 month old niece, and she was the BEST baby Jesus! She sat there swaddled quietly. Her big sis was The Virgin Mary, and she did great as well. Notice that I got to be one of the wise women, and believe it or not, this was my first Christmas "pageant" so I was excited to be included ;).

Christmas day started with breakfast and gifts at our house, just us 3. Liam had 3 gifts to open, and one bigger gift, and he really didn't care about much of it at all! Lee and I typically do not exchange gifts, but instead fill each other stockings. 
Check out the fake smile that Liam has down already! He already had the car, but Santa set it out so he could see how his new gas station worked with the car. His gifts had the "Something you want (gas toy), something you need (portable high chair seat), something you wear (hat x2 and gloves), and something you read (2 books).

After we exchanged gifts at home, we packed up and headed to IL for Christmas at my brothers with his family, and my mom. My mom had dinner ready for us all, and I brought cookies for everyone to decorate. 

I didn't take many pics at my brother's house, but I did get one of Liam, my mom, and his toy. My mom gifted Liam this adorable ice cream cart, which he has been playing with ever since.  

The next day we had a lazy morning at my brother's house, and then went to my cousin's house for a visit. She is prepping for her scheduled c-section THE NEXT DAY! We were so happy we got to visit quickly before things got too crazy for her and her family. Her youngest son and Liam are about 2 months apart, and look how cute they were together! 

Before heading home, we stopped at my grandparents' house for a quick visit. My grandma couldn't get over how HEAVY Liam was for her to hold (he weighs about 25 lb) haha. 

The Sunday after Christmas, we took a day trip to the St. Louis area to visit my other set of grandparents. We stopped at Trader Joe's along the way and picked up some goodies, and then spent a few hours with my gma and gpa. I'm so sad that I didn't take ANY pics. FAIL!! We stopped at Steak n Shake on the way home, and Lee did manage to snap this pic of Liam and I. 

Liam was tired and a little grouchy from so much time in the car, so I put on this silly hat to try to cheer him up. This boy LOVES french fries, so we opted for chicken tenders and fries to make him happy :) 

As you can tell, we had a busy, but GREAT Christmas filled with lots of love and family time. I'm so thankful for all of my family, and for that little baby born in Bethlehem who saved us all. Merry Christmas, friends!