Thursday, September 25, 2008

Pismo Beach

After church on Sunday, we loaded up the car and drove south on the 101 to Pismo Beach. It was about a 4hr drive but time passed quickly. Russell had come down with a cold on Saturday morning, so he was loaded up with Tylenol in the back seat.
Once we descended out of the California hills onto the coastline, Russell yelled, 'beach! beach' until we check into the hotel and our car was successfully parked at the boardwalk. He was so happy with his pail and shovel. He loves the beach but is adamant about not getting his shoes/feet wet. Go figure.
Our hotel is the white one above. Accurately described, it had "ocean views." We had to take a short walk alongside the ridge to get to the beach-access stairs but it was no problem. Russell could do it.

Yours truly. The water was really nice and it would have been fun to have a few friends to enjoy the water with me. Dan and Russell are not big water/swimmer/ocean people;-)

California natives: the pelicans. There were hundrends of these birds flying and diving continually.

Dan with his coffee and Russell with his milk and Cheerios. Since Russell was under the weather (read: grouchy, whiny), he wasn't into exploring the locals towns with us. We stayed close to the hotel and relaxed on the beach.

On Wednesday morning, we packed up and returned home. Russell didn't realize we were going home (I wonder where he thought we were going??) until we reached our neighborhood and then he shouted, "No go home! No go home! Room! Room!" (for his hotel room). Ahh. Welcome home!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Our 'not so' little boy

Little Russell isn't so little anymore. He sleeps without the crib rails and sits at the table without his blue booster seat. His verbal abilities are improving almost daily and he likes to set the table (i.e. set out the forks and knives). He is so precious to us.

Last Saturday, I spent an hour at the local thrift store (for those of you local, call me if you want to know where it is). I like buying Russell's clothes there because of the low prices ($1-$2) and great finds (Gymboree, Gap, Old Navy). I am now buying 2T-3T clothing for him for the cold winter/spring season. The funny thing is that I am finding that most of the toddler's clothing's tags have names printed on them. I suppose that the parents labelled the clothing because they sent their child to daycare and didn't want it to be lost. Poor Russell will grow up with 'Johnny' and 'David' and 'Sammy' written on his labels;-)

Monday, September 15, 2008

R.E. Visit

We had a busy Sunday- but nothing had to do with our anniversary. I helped in the nursery during the first service then we attended the second service and were home home for lunch at 1pm. Then, Dan told me the RE clinic had called earlier in the morning to see if we would like to fill a cancelled appointment spot the next day (today). I've never had a dr's office call on a Sunday.

The office called back about 2pm and we confirmed the appointment, so no more waiting until October 2nd. Then, soon after Russell got up from his nap, our friend called to say that his wife was going into labor and to let us know it was time to pick up Child #1. No problem. We had guests coming for supper but thankfully, courtesy of Trader Joe's, no preparation was needed.

Our guests stayed until 7:30pm and then we put Russell and his friend to sleep:-)

So, at the appointment this afternoon, the RE talked with us for an hour about our 'case' and admitted that there is still hope for a healthy pregnancy considering we've had Russell. I'll grasp whatever hope I'm given. She ordered more extensive clotting tests (she suspects that although my clotting is okay normally, it may go askew during pregnancy) and thyroid bloodwork (similar reasoning, considering my pseudo-arthritis fingers/ 'claw-hands' I had during Russell's gestation). I liked what the RE was saying because she wants to continually monitor my clotting factors and thyroid during the next gestation (whenever that may be) so she'll have an idea what changes my body is allowing and possibly not regulating. The journey continues.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Six Years Already!

Happy anniversary to us:-) We're looking forward to our Pismo Beach trip next week (this weeks was too busy for us to go). If I had to say, 'I do' all over again, I would:-)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Good News

Apparently, our insurance company will pay for 50% of consultations, ultrasounds, IUIs, and some of the medications at the RE clinic. Apparently.

I received the letter from our HMO a few days ago that provided us with this information even though it contradicts the information I received from the insurance company this past spring. Hence, my scepticism. I need to call the insurance company to clarify the confusion.

On another note, Dan only has $400 left of his student loan. That will be the end of the last 12 years of repayment. Our university plan for Russell? Stay beneath the $80K 'poverty' level and send Russell to Stanford for free.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Autumn Beginnings

This Sunday is the 'kick off' at church of the new season. Like school, the church mimics the start of new classes and care groups and such. Last Sunday, we moved Russell up from the toddler nursery to the 2.5yr-3.5yr class, which basically means less toys and more structure.

I remember the close of summer as a child. Dad would be off to school to prepare for the fall and we'd anticipate what teachers we'd have. It was a time of saying good-bye to the summer and warm weather, and hello to the long pants and sweaters once again. Russell (whether by Nature or Nuture) is similar to me in this way. When the morning is clouded by the fog, Russell says, "sun come back? Clouds move away!" Yes, definitely my child. We thrive in the sun/warmth. He plays with his cars and blocks in the sunny areas of the carpet.

The fall is also a time of anticipation for us. Our anniversary vacation, Canadian Thanksgiving/ Columbus Day get-togethers, Halloween fun for the kids, American Thanksgiving, and of course, my birthday:-) Christmas follows as well but I enjoy the family gatherings moreso than the gifts. I know I sound 'old' when I say the gifts matter less now, but I'd rather we'd spend the money on a great vacation and fun times. How many of us remember what we got last Christmas? Maybe next winter we could do Hawai'i??

Russell has a copy of the book, "My Little Book about God" by Eloise Wilkin (we all had a copy, I'm sure!). There is a little phrase in there that reads, "God gives us memories of yesterdays, so that happy times and people we love, we can keep with us always in our hearts." This is very true!

So, as I mourn the passing of another summer and the warm days and short nights, it is wonderful to look forward as well to know that more wonderful moments will be coming our way, and that yes, summer will come once again.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Appointment Reminder

With the new automated phone and e-mail systems the medical clinics have, you'd have to be dead not to get the multiple messages. Before each appointment, the phone rings and leaves an automated message and than an e-mail is sent to my in-box. Despite all the iPhones and Blackberries and fancy cell-phones, it is obvious that someone is not showing up to their appointments. Me? No, my dates are clearly marked with pen on my disposable fridge calendar.

The next 'big' appointment we have is on October 2nd in the afternoon with a reproductive endocrinologist. Although my OB has done a phone consultation with the RE (last fall), we figured it couldn't hurt to meet in person. Our insurance doesn't cover any infertility (yes, the same company that will pay for an abortion for the low cost of $125 up to 20wks gestation) but we can pay out-of-pocket if it is an issue. My OB said he'd talk to the insurance company and tell them it wasn't that we can't get pregnant but that we can't stay pregnant. Nice doctor, he is.

In the mean time, we are trying to stay distracted. I've been looking for a twin bed for Russell and with that, some new bedding. We were given two season passes for a theme park in the area so that will be fun for us as well (there are 2-3 months left on the tickets). Then, to celebrate our sixth anniversary, we're heading down to Pismo Beach on the 21st-24th. Since being married, we've driven all of the California coast with exception of the Monterey-Goleta section. Supposedly, this section is the most beautiful:-) The place we are staying is more family friendly and each room is actually a suite (900 sq ft with two bedrooms). The hotel is right on the beach. Hopefully, it will be a place we can return to often.

Friday, September 05, 2008

A Poem

I found this poem posted on another blog this week and it really hit home for me. I don't really need to comment more, but just an encouragment for everyone, no matter what we're going through, God is still in control...

- by Russell Kelfer

Desperately, helplessly, longingly, I cried;
Quietly, patiently, lovingly, God replied.
I pled and I wept for a clue to my fate . . .
And the Master so gently said, "Wait."

"Wait? you say wait?" my indignant reply.
"Lord, I need answers, I need to know why!
Is your hand shortened? Or have you not heard?
By faith I have asked, and I'm claiming your Word."

"My future and all to which I relate
Hangs in the balance, and you tell me to wait?
I'm needing a 'yes', a go-ahead sign,
Or even a 'no' to which I can resign."

"You promised, dear Lord, that if we believe,
We need but to ask, and we shall receive.
And Lord I've been asking, and this is my cry:
I'm weary of asking! I need a reply.

"Then quietly, softly, I learned of my fate,
As my Master replied again, "Wait."
So I slumped in my chair, defeated and taut,
And grumbled to God, "So, I'm waiting for what?"

He seemed then to kneel, and His eyes met with mine . . .
and He tenderly said, "I could give you a sign.
I could shake the heavens and darken the sun.
I could raise the dead and cause mountains to run."

"I could give all you seek and pleased you would be.
You'd have what you want, but you wouldn't know Me.
You'd not know the depth of my love for each saint.
You'd not know the power that I give to the faint."

"You'd not learn to see through clouds of despair;
You'd not learn to trust just by knowing I'm there.
You'd not know the joy of resting in Me
When darkness and silence are all you can see."

"You'd never experience the fullness of love
When the peace of My spirit descends like a dove.
You would know that I give, and I save, for a start,
But you'd not know the depth of the beat of My heart."

"The glow of my comfort late into the night,
The faith that I give when you walk without sight.
The depth that's beyond getting just what you ask
From an infinite God who makes what you have last."

"You'd never know, should your pain quickly flee,
What it means that My grace is sufficient for thee.
Yes, your dearest dreams overnight would come true,
But, oh, the loss, if you missed what I'm doing in you."

"So, be silent, my child, and in time you will see
That the greatest of gifts is to truly know me.
And though often My answers seem terribly late,
My most precious answer of all is still . . . Wait."

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Life Uncomplicated...

Over the weekend, we started to 'clean sweep' our house. We really have only made one big move (San Diego to here) so we haven't been forced to purge the extras. The next major project I need to work on is getting rid of Dan's Navy uniforms. He wants to keep the formal sets (no problem) but the 'work blues' need to be seam-ripped of ID and other Navy insignias before we get rid of them. No moving truck is coming any time in the forseeable future, but someday it will, and we don't want to have to sort/clean as much when that time comes.

We got rid of:
-cassettes & VHS tapes (we just kept a couple of our favorite movies)
-unused summer clothes and unstylish pregnancy clothes (yes, they do exist!)
-baby swing and Jumperoo (if we need those again, we can just borrow them from other families)
-unread books (always lots of those) and magazines (do you really reread the National Geographics?)

Now that Russell's room is decluttered, we hope (in the next few months) to put a twin bed in there. He'll be out of the crib soon. When we put the crib away in Russell's closet, we'll sort the closet at that time. It has all the camping equipment which we hope to use next summer (Yosemite, maybe??).

Living in 1040 sq. ft. has its' disadvantages but overall, we still love our little place. It works for our family. Although I do envy certain houses/yards in the area, I find that people that own homes still use the city parks just as much as we do.

The small space we have also limits Russell's amount of toys and books. Interestingly enough, Russell really only plays with his Matchbox cars and classic wooden blocks. He parks and reparks his cars for hours. No exaggeration. Since he can now identify all uppercase alphabetical letters, he is excited to 'match' up the blocks and cars (i.e. the loader is parked by the L, the tractor by the T). He is so excited to know the letters (we're still working on the lowercase) and numbers 1-10. We went into Old Navy yesterday and Russell was shouting out all the numbers he saw on the large-labelled signs. Fun times.

I guess once we finish purging, it will be potty-training time...