Friday, December 31, 2010

Daily Shot - New Year. Same Goal.

My daily dose of sanity.
Oprah Winfrey said it best. "Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right."

I love the new year. Something to do with the fact that I'm goal driven and love a new beginning. Then there's the killer New Year's Eve party that my sister throws (this year paying homage to the Chilean miners)...

So as I'm digging out my hard hat and headlight for tonight's festivities, I'm also thinking about my goals for 2011.

Although it's a new year.....I realize that I have the same goals.

Except for one: Peace.

With that, 2011 is definitely another opportunity for me to get it right. Cheers to the new year!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Shock Treatment

I'm having massive migraine headaches and nausea...which I think is a result of these birth control pills. Any recommendations?

I've been holed up in a dark room with a cold washcloth on my head for two days... and I'm ready to come out now.

(While you're offering advice, is chest pain a normal birth control side effect as well? ..or was that just an anxiety attack thanks to snow storms and canceled blood drives?!)

Monday, December 27, 2010

The 4-1-1

IVF. What does it mean and how does it work?

IVF = In-Vitro Fertilization.

Essentially, it means "fertilization outside of the body". (I think I just gave my mother and grandmother a heart attack). Bear with me here for a minute while I explain some of the basics (with some help from my friends over at Stirrup Queens)...

Women who chose to undergo IVF, have typically exhausted all other options and have the following diagnosis: blocked/damaged/inoperable Fallopian tubes, male factor infertility (low count/abnormal morphology/etc), women with endometriosis, unexplained infertility, immunological issues. can just be like me and be oh-so screwed up in oh-so many ways.

In general, an IVF cycle consists of a phase where you suppress your body's tendency to ovulate with GnRh agonist subcutaneaous medication like Lupron, and then use a follicle-stimulating medication like Follitism to super stimulate your ovaries into producing a number of eggs. When you have a number of follicles (which are detected by ultrasound) , you'll "trigger" with a shot of HcG. Exactly 36 hours from the "trigger" your doctor will extract them in a retrieval which is usually done under general anesthesia. From there a embryologist will take the mature eggs and fertilize them with the sperm. Transfers of the resulting embryos (6-8 cells) or blastocysts (multiple cells) take place either three (embryos) or five (blastocysts) days after retrevial. Any excess embryos or blastocysts can be cryo preserved (frozen) for future frozen embryo transfer (FET).

What To Expect

In general, an IVF cycle involves a lot of needles - depending on your protocol, the agonist repression, follicle-stimulation, and "trigger" medications are delivered via subcutaneous injections. Basically, I get a daily shot from my over exited husband. I swear, jabbing me with a needle is the highlight of his day. For me, there is a lot of screaming, whining and crying involved which usually results in at least one delivery of sympathy flowers.

When you begin the follicle-stimulating medications you will probably go in for ultrasounds and blood draws every other day and/or every day leading up to the retrieval. Additionally, as you get closer to the retrieval, you'll probably become a little bloated and uncomfortable from the extra eggs that are developing in my ovaries.

For the retrieval, like any other procedure under general anesthesia you won't have anything to eat or drink after midnight. When the procedure is over there might be some pain from the egg extraction and/or nausea from the anesthesia. I usually do well with this.

And because a doctor is surgically removing the egg from your follicles, there is no corpus luteum to generate progesterone. So after the transfer, Mr. Thompson will gleefully give me a daily progesterone-in-oil (PIO) intramuscular injection, depending on our protocol.

There are a host of potential side effects of the medications during an IVF cycle. During the repression phase, you might take birth control pills (which I started on Christmas Day for this cycle), which sometimes causes headaches and PMS-type symptoms. In the stimulation phase, it's not abnormal to feel physically uncomfortable and have headaches (I had massive migraines with my Gonal-F last month because the dosage was high). After the retrieval, you'll be on bed rest for a few days and will probably be a little bloated and sore.

Side Effects

The biggest issue that might arise is Ovarian Hyper-Stimulation Syndrome (OHSS), where the follicles after the retrieval fill with fluid and leak into the abdominal cavity and into the chest. Symptoms of OHSS include rapid weight gain (2lbs or more per day), inability to urinate, fullness/bloating in your abdomen, and/or a shortness of breath. Mild OHSS will resolve itself in a few days, though if you get pregnant it might take longer. But moderate and severe OHSS can be life-threatening, though fairly rare – less than 1% of patients end up with OHSS this severe.
However, your doctor will monitor your estradiol levels (E2) via blood work just before the retrieval. Levels over 5000 are generally not recommended – if this is the case your doctor may have you “coast” (i.e. skip your injections) for a day to decrease your levels.

Personal Tips

The best advice someone once gave me was to take things one day at a time. I have to remind myself of this frequently because it is easy to become overwhelmed with the number of needles and medications involved. Last time I just focused on what I needed to do that day...and before I knew it - the medications were almost gone and time flew by. It also helps to pamper yourself and your husband, otherwise it feels really "medical" (which it is).

If you can’t do the injections yourself, I would recommend that you do what I do and have your husband do them. It's a nice way to keep them involved...and like I said, it usually results in sympathy flowers.

They (the experts) also say that if you do your injection slowly, chances are you won’t bruise but I don't believe this. Who wants a needle inserted slowly?! (Trust me - I work for the Red Cross Blood Services and needles are our business!)

They (the experts) also recommend drinking plenty of Gatorade after the retrieval to replenish your electrolytes. The more fluid you drink, the better chance you’ll have at healing more quickly. I'm horrible about this but am determined that I'll try to drink more after our next round.

For some people it takes longer to recover after the retrieval than expected. The same friend who told me to take it one day at a time...couldn't walk for about 5 days after her retrieval so she was on bed rest for pretty much an entire week. It is uncomfortable so let's just say that when we do this retrieval, I'll probably clear my schedule for the week.

Again, sympathy flowers will work well.

Whew - that made me tired. No wonder Guilianna Rancic (E!) is seeing a post-IVF therapist!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Joys of IVF

Christmas Day brought a lot of joys.

Starting birth control wasn't one of them.

Then again, neither was Christmas Dinner which I realized I hadn't purchased anything for at precisely 7:13pm on Christmas Eve. I realized it - after the stores had closed - when my family was bragging about the Prime Rib dinner they were preparing for the Idaho clan.

Mr. Thompson looked at me and said, "Babe - they are eating Prime Rib. What exactly are we eating?".

Good question. We finished off the corn dogs last week.

I was still trying to figure the answer to this question out some 20 hours later as we traveled 40 miles to only find a China Buffet and Marie Calendars open for business.

Marie Calendars it was. (Bless them!)

Which unfortunately, didn't react well with the Christmas Day birth control.

So for those of you new to the wonders of IVF, why-oh-why is an infertile woman taking birth control on Christmas Day? Simply put (in the words of my near and dear Walgreen's Pharmacist) "birth control pills kind of shut everything down giving us a clean slate to work with".

What I love is that my pharmacist said, "giving US a clean slate to work with"...with the understanding that he's part of the team. We're tight like that. For four years this man has greeted me like his long lost cousin every time he sees me. He has not once asked me my name (since my first visit) and has filled in the blanks that multiple doctors have left out (most of which I haven't even known to ask). He has closed every conversation with the reminder that he is praying for me.

This Christmas he slid me a candy cane, patted my hand in Christmas-Day-birth-control understanding... and reminded me that next Christmas we would be discussing Children's Tylenol.

I'm endeared for life.

(especially since he also sold me a Christmas Story Leg Lamp that my dad is now proudly displaying in his front window. Go Walgreen's!)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Miracles

Today is the first day of our IVF cycle. Merry Christmas. That means we'll start taking birth control on Christmas Day which is so ironic that it's almost funny...

I'm not complaining though because I've had my fair share of Christmas miracles. Mr Thompson snuggled on the couch with me tonight for a few hours which was awesome. As we gazed at the Christmas tree lights and whispered sweet holiday nothings, I told him (again) about my best Christmas ever...

When I was about 15 years old things changed pretty dramatically for my family. The 1980's was a period when thousands of farm families lost their farms because of low farm prices and overwhelming debt. Farming was in a crisis across the U.S. and it hit rural Idaho pretty hard. I'll never forget the sadness in my parents faces that Fall as the trucks hauled away all our cows and the public auction was held to sell off everything we had. Everything my "salt of the earth" dad had worked so hard for his whole entire life.

It didn't matter that that the majority of the debt wasn't his. Or that the people he sold his crops to took out bankruptcy. As a result, an honest man and his hard working wife were practically penniless with an altered circumstance. Tough stuff when you have eight kids to support.

As the holidays approached my mom delicately reminded me not to expect much but asked if I would be willing to give up my dollhouse to my little sister. We didn't have money for food, let alone gifts, so we had to get creative with what we had. My dollhouse was the most obvious choice for my little sister because it was grand. Santa had brought me it years before when times were really good. I was eight and it was beyond my wildest imagination for a reason. There was a man in our church who had also fallen on hard times. Sensing that he needed some help, but knowing that this man wouldn't take a handout, my dad asked this man to build me a dollhouse. The result surpassed anything you can imagine. Simply put, it was glorious down to it's custom woodwork and finest detail. I'm sure that my dad paid this man a lot of money - not for a dollhouse - but it had an amazing result.

So here I was, when times were now tough for my family, being asked to give it up so someone else could still feel its wonder. Begrudgingly, I said yes even though I didn't want to. I was sceptical that the free paint and wallpaper samples would alter it that dramatically and make it hers rather than mine. With guidance and a lesson on sacrifice from my mom, I finally decided to try. It was important that my three younger siblings could still "believe" but what I thought everyone had forgotten that year...was that I still wanted to "believe" too. Desperately so.

It made me resent Christmas because I was at that awkward age of questioning everything including the spirit of Christmas. Santa wasn't real. God wasn't fair. And I was just mad.

I vividly remember sitting on the couch on Christmas Eve with the scaled back traditions thinking about how horrible it all was. Christmas was always a big deal in my house, but this year it was different. No trip the the Christmas Tree farm in Oregon for the "perfect trees". No presents laying under it's Charlie Brown replacement. Nothing but a refurbished dollhouse for someone else while there wasn't anything for me. To get even, I simply refused to participate in the festivities (Did I mention that I was an extremely selfish 15 year old?!). I sat there on the couch in open rebellion on Christmas Eve with my arms crossed, refusing to sing carols as we went through our traditional Christmas Book when...

There was a very loud knock on our front door.

I don't remember who went to answer it but "out on the lawn there rose such a clatter...we sprang up from the couch to see what was the matter". There were quickly squeals of delight from everyone and when I couldn't take the curiosity any longer...I got up to see what all of the commotion was about. There on our front lawn were boxes and boxes and boxes and boxes of presents. Boxes and boxes and boxes. (okay - totally sobbing now as I write this because the memory of the feeling always makes me cry). Not a person in sight but more wrapped presents than I had ever seen in my life.

Santa brought them.

We got basics that year like socks, underwear, food and gloves... but for us it was a bounty that was better than gold. Everything was wrapped and the feeling was indescribable. Simply put, it was magic. It was perfect love and the true meaning of Christmas all wrapped in one. I'll never forget the way my mom held her homemade decorative pillow or the tears that poured down my dad's cheeks as he held a ham and watched the excitement on his children's faces. That was the very first time that I saw my father cry.

It was the year that I learned to really believe.

We never found out who those Christmas elves were, and it was never really important. I've often thought about how they must have felt hiding in the bushes watching hope be restored to a family who needed it. Those people gave my family something way beyond the material and it changed a 15 year old's heart...when a 15 year old's heart needed changing. It taught me about the true meaning of Christmas. It taught me to always pay it forward. It taught me that miracles do exist and will still exist... even when I am a 36 year old woman praying for a different kind of Christmas miracle with an altered result.

Which is why I wish each of you a very merriest and blessed Christmas, full of the same miracles and love that I have felt my whole life through. This year is no exception.

Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


I'm not going to delete the previous post because the comments were good and I'm all about the relaxing underneath your Christmas Tree part. It's also important to breathe because in the words of my very wise 18 year old niece "holding your breath isn't going to do any good". :)

Moral of the story is this....

Life gets much better if you just go back to sleep.

Silent Night

Today I feel...


Sometimes I wake up and feel that same indescribable feeling that I felt the when I woke up in the hospital the day after we lost Colton. Joy...which turns to disbelief...which turns to a deep sadness. All in a matter of seconds.

It's a horrible feeling. After a sad realization.

So here's to hoping that laying under the beautiful Christmas tree, listening to peaceful Christmas music, during the quiet of morning will help.

I'm not going to think about negative pregnancy tests...or babies born much too small...or IVF fears....or everything that tries to make you lose hope during this season of - well - hope....

I'm just going to lay here and relax. Thinking about the holiday season being grateful for what, quite simply, is.


Sunday, December 19, 2010

We Are Family

Santa came a little early this year. He flew in from Camp Pendleton (after sitting in an airport for 17 hours)...

...just in time for an appearance at our Family Christmas Party...

...where he surprised everyone...

...most especially the Sisters who finally figured it out after 10 minutes when he slipped into a weird Scottish brogue...

..but the best moment was at the end when his unsuspecting little buddy was sitting on his lap. After presents and lists, Santa told him he was hot and asked the little guy to help remove his hat. With it came all the white hair...which absolutely confused the little guy and caused him to sit there staring in dumbfound wonder. Until he realized that his eyes weren't deceiving him...and with a cry he threw his arms around his beloved uncle and said, "I knew you'd come!"....

..and that would make a five year old who believes wiser than two of the Three Wise Women who did not...

... which made for an awesome Family Christmas Party...
...with one tired fake Santa.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday Night Leftovers, 12/17/10

This is what's warming up this week with...

  • This is where my mind starts playing tricks on me. I woke up at 5:00am thinking that I was going to throw up. Since we just had our IUI procedure last week that would be a good indicator for the stomach flu. Then again, I'm the person who had something much more severe then morning sickness the for the entire 6 months of my pregnancy 3 years ago...
  • Ever watched Guilianna & Bill on the E! channel? Besides the skinny, rich and famous part....that's my life being played out on the big screen. Funny how we can be so different and yet infertility (I hate that word) is pretty much the same for everyone. In this week's episode Gulianna was preparing for IVF and screams while Bill gives her her daily shots in the belly. Yeah- that's Mr. Thompson and Me.
  • This week's episode also has Guilianna crying at her therapist's office because infertility (still hate that word) is so emotional. got me thinking - maybe I need a therapist too....
  • Wait. Who need therapy when you have a blog?!
  • Oh, and shopping too. Although Retail Therapy does not count during Christmas! I haven't done one ounce of Christmas shopping yet and I have no desire to. None. Nada. I wish I could bypass even my 3 gift rule this year. Ba Humbug!
  • Since I've asked Santa for a sewing machine (crazy, I know...) I guess I've got to break down and reciprocate. What, oh what, am I going to get Mr. Thompson this year? I've been hoping for a Christmas Miracle to get me off the hook so I can just give him a little piece of plastic with a + sign...but I better come up with a backup plan. Any ideas?
  • There are other Christmas Miracles which I am praying for. One involves the Boston Butt which is cooking in my crock pot for the next 12 hours. I've never had so much fun ordering anything at the meat counter of my local grocer. Say "I'd like a Boston Butt, please" out loud and tell me that isn't funny!
  • Speaking of Boston Butts....If I screw this up then I am officially the world's worst cook. No way around it. All I had to do was dump said purchased meat into the crock pot, add BBQ sauce, and let that lil' pot do its business for 12 hours. But something tells me that you're gonna need to pray and believe for my Christmas Miracles too (both of them)!
  • Family Christmas Party tomorrow night which should be something close to the Griswold's. My Christmas Grenade is painted, packaged, and ready to go for our annual Smith and Edward Gift Exchange (yes - it's a real grenade). I heard that Santa Claus is comin' to town so I'm going to have to ask him to define "good"...

Merry Christmas and don't forget to stop by Danifred for other yummy leftovers.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Three Wise Women

Here's another Thompson family tradition...

Last year I partnered up with my two sisters to enact the "three gift rule" for our families. We did this because we don't want the commercialization or the pressure of "gimme gimme gimme" to be the focus of our holidays. Rather, we would like to teach our children about the real reason for the season with the help of the Three Wise Men. I guess that would make us the Three Wise Women, right?

Needless to say, it worked out awesome for Mr. Thompson and me and will be something that we definitely continue.

The three gift rule: every member gets three gifts for Christmas.

Only. Three.

Wrapped in green, gold and red these gifts symbolize and are reflective of the gifts that the Wise Men gave. I had to smile at Lil' A last weekend as she was writing her letter to Santa because without prompting, this child who has everything (which is typical in divorce for an only child), kept her list to a very modest three on her own. She was really enthused and automatically associated her three with the following: (...and bless this child for asking for socks and underwear as "something that she needs" because that is exactly what she is going to get!)
GOLD: This is the most obvious in color and significance. It's precious and worthy across all cultures and times. For us, it represents something we want.

FRANKINCENSE: Used as a holy anointing oil, its resin was derived from a tree, symbolizing gifts wrapped in green which represent something we need.

MYRRH: This is perhaps the most mysterious of the gifts. In times of old, it was a sacred substance and those whom could afford its resin used it as an incense to treat virtually every illness and disease. Since it was a reddish-brown in color our gifts are wrapped in red and represent something that will make us a better person.
On Christmas Eve we will gather once again as an extended family with my sister's family for a night full of love, good food and tradition. As we act out our annual Nativity play... we will hopefully make our three gifts continue to mean something.
Like they did so long ago.
Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 13, 2010

From My Tree To Yours, 2010

What a great holiday tradition we started our first year of marriage. I collect beautiful hand blown glass ornaments and each year we add a special one to our collection.

With Little Brother graduating from the Marine Corp, 2010 celebrates the year of the solider.
So Merry Christmas from my tree to yours.
If you were going to put up a new ornament representing your year, what would it be?

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Saturday Night Lights

I remember why I love Salt Lake City...

I don't know who those people are that string millions of lights to the furthest reaches of the downtown Temple Square branches...but I salute them.

Boy o' boy I love the beauty of Christmas!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday Night Leftovers

Here's what is warming up with this week's...

  1. Tired. Of. Football. Period.
  2. Ditto statement #1.
  3. Since Santa's elves are watching I'm not going to say it out loud but will rather smile, hand over the remote and think about that sewing machine I want for Christmas. Yeah - you heard me right...a sewing machine.
  4. If you've been keeping up with Viva la Vida you know that this has been a big week for Mr. Thompson and me. The treadmill is in high gear and it feels pretty good. Watch out world - Skinny Me is on her way.
  5. Unless we get prego that is. Crossing fingers, toes, legs, hair, eyes and anything else that will cross.
  6. Have I ever mentioned that I hate the word "infertile"? I do. So I think that we at Viva la Vida need to come up with another word. Whatcha got?
  7. Tree up - check.
  8. Stocking hung - check.
  9. Hand blown glass ornaments strung from the windows - check. (saw this in a fancy restaurant years ago and loved it!)
  10. Garland around pillars and banisters - check. (even heard birds chirping from it this morning)
  11. Josh Groban's CD album in the stereo - check.
  12. Christmas season full of wonder and joy - check. check.
  13. I discovered ebay this week. Why didn't anyone tell me how great it is?! Bid and bought my Lancome mascara for $5 which was a mega deal. Bid and bought the Willow Christmas Story statues for $37 (129.00 value) which was even better. But tell me this, does ebay count as online gambling? Because if it does...I might need an intervention. I can't seem to stop bidding. Next, I'm going to look for a book about how to hide the bank statements from my spouse...
  14. Got down on my knees today to pray for my enemies. Why they are my enemies, I have no idea as it happened long before I arrived. But in my search for peace I did read in the scriptures that you're supposed to pray for your enemies so I'm gonna give it a try. I don't want to have anger in my heart for people that I've never even met (their choice). I will say this wasn't a 9 year old's responsibility to tell her dad in passing conversation on a car ride home, that his grandma died 2 weeks ago. Mr. Thompson really loved his grandma. She was the one person who provided safety and love which is why this is one more devastation for Mr. Thompson by his family, especially his mom. It makes me weep in my heart and swear that I will never be that kind of a mother to my child. Ever. I truly don't understand it because a mother's love should know no bounds. How thankful I am to the amazing women in my life that have taught me that.
  15. Which is exactly why I keep handing him the remote control.

And with that...I'm off to pray again and then I'm going to search ebay for a sewing machine deal and then a book on how to cover it up. Happy Friday and don't forget to stop on by Danifred to show some FNL love.

Oh yeah, and thanks for crossing your fingers and toes too. Viva la Vida!

Thursday, December 9, 2010


Viva la vida.

Do you know what that means?

I live the life.

Simple as that. I live the life.

As Mr. Thompson was cracking jokes again today in what he jokingly refers to as "the execution chamber" - I was reminded of that. The guy makes me laugh to the point of tears every time we step foot into that room. Once upon a time we were timid and scared like everyone else in the waiting room. Awkward at best. Now we just sit there and laugh like two seasoned veterans. Two fools.

Today was a different experience than we've had. This may sound weird but I was almost...dare I say...comfortable. The staff know me by name. The receptionist chats like we're old friends. The lab tech hands us our cup with "you know the routine" and a wink, smile and held up crossed fingers. The nurses remind me that we have to name our baby after one of them - who has the best name is still the matter of office debate. They point us to the room and don't have to say a word. I lay down and make myself comfortable. I sign the paperwork they leave on the counter without having to be told. In comes a nurse and we talk about shopping at Nordroms and spending all that money "we" saved with those injections last week. When we are done (without realizing we began) the nurse laughs and says, "oops - I should have had you verify". Mr. Thompson chuckles and says, "don't worry - I looked at the paperwork before you began to make sure it was mine". The nurse tells him to rub my feet, give me a kiss, or something! As I check out, I ask Billing to verify insurance coverage for next month's IVF and she smiles and says, "don't worry about it - you aren't going to need it". A nurse comes out to the front desk to apologize for being in with another patient and calls Mr. Thompson "super-sperm" with a joke about donating for the bank. We all laugh - the nurse, the billing lady, Mr. Thompson and me.

I get in the car and my phone rings within 5 minutes from a dear friend who is checking to see how things went. I say with a big smile, "it went great and everything is just fine".

And I mean it!

I don't know if we'll have a baby or not but ironically, this time, I'm not worried about being too hopeful. I'm not worried about the let down. I'm not full of fear about if we do get pregnant...or if we don't get pregnant.

I'm living the life. The good, the bad, and the ugly. While this isn't necessarily the also isn't the bad and the ugly anymore.

Another step in the right direction, don't 'cha think?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Step Right - Step Left - Step Forward

Today was a step in the right direction.

Little Brother has learned a little too much in the Marines and has decided that he's going to get me "boot camp" skinny. I got on the treadmill and he yelled at me to go faster from a thousand miles away. He swears that he is going to do it three times a week (at 5:30am!)...and I fear he is serious.

But he has to learn not to send me text messages while I'm actually on the treadmill because it almost bucked me off. I'm not a "pat your head" and "rub your tummy" kind of person.


Tomorrow is another step in the right direction.

In my follow up appointment with Dr. H this month we discussed our options. Although I said I was done after the last failed attempt....we had a good discussion and Mr. Thompson and I decided to tighten our seat belts and stay on this emotional IVF roller coaster. We'll keep going - whatever it takes. We recognize our blessings and understand that although 1 in every 4 couples is going through what we're going through (can you believe that statistic?! no wonder there are so many blogs!)...many don't have the same treatment options that we have. We have great health benefit coverage and for that, hope lives on. Since we missed the beginning injections of this IVF cycle...Dr. H decided to do another IUI. He's feeling optimistic so send me some positive thoughts and energy on Thursday afternoon.

We have four really great "ones". During Monday's ultrasound Dr. H said, "how do you feel about quadruplets" with a chuckle.

I just laughed right back.

God has a sense of humor and I've learned that I do too.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Bad Santa

Beware: there is a dirty Santa roaming around Salt Lake City, Utah.

I met him on Friday night when we went to get our Christmas tree. We went to our usual spot which is an eclectic little (or rather not-so-little) Christmas tree lot. We like to go there because upon entering through the gate, you get greeted by a dog which has 1/2 an antler like in The Grinch That Stole Christmas. It's good for a laugh. Then you wander around and run into three very real, very mangy reindeer. Without expecting it, you also stumble upon a hot tub which is placed in the middle of the tree lot. It looks like a cesspool. There are also burn barrels placed all over, which I swear is a fire hazard since they are shooting sparks in the middle of a tree lot. Oh well - it's cold outside.

This year there was an added effect. A sleigh parked next to the reindeer. In the sleigh sat Santa.

In Santa's hand was a cigarette.

Forget sliding down the chimney - Santa was puffing on it.

The most random and funny thing I have seen this holiday season. And when he beckoned the little kids he sounded like a child molester with a "Merry Christmas" and a "Ho Ho Ho".

I've never heard "Ho Ho Ho" sound so creepy and funny at the same time.

And for that, I am endeared to this Christmas Tree lot for life (or rather, for as long as I live in Salt Lake City). This is the same tree lot from which we purchased the most gorgeous tree last year...only to have Mr. Thompson forget that it was on the roof of our 4Runner as he drove into the garage.

Not a pretty sight.

But then again, neither was Santa.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Small and Simple Things

Today I woke up with unbearable stomach cramps.

I think it's from those shots Mr. Thompson is giving me. The ones that he likes to jab into my arm a little too much...

So I laid down on my floor underneath my Christmas tree and listened to a Celtic Woman's Christmas. It soothed me right back to sleep.

This is the beauty of Christmas. The part that I love the most.

It's in the small and simple spiritual things. Like laying under a tree listening to heavenly music.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

A Day In The Life

Today went something like this....

Woke up this morning bright and early for an 8:00am ultrasound. Pleasantly surprised as one typical follicle turned into 16. Shots must be working. Next step: two more day of shots and return to see Dr. H on Monday for another ultrasound. We'll do another IUI this month (because he's feeling lucky) and then ONE LAST attempt at IVF next month (because we missed the timing for this month). more.

After that I decided that I deserved some comfort shopping. Shhhh...don't tell Mr. Thompson but I spent more money on Christmas decorations. This time on a table centerpiece. After wandering around for an hour, I stumbled upon these wooden rose "thingies" which I thought were kinda cool... so I gave up and put them in the basket with no further thought about how it would pull together. I am NOT creative and can't figure out if this centerpiece concoction looks good or not - so I'll let you be the judge. What do you think? (don't worry about hurting my feelings - I've been looking for decorating help for 2 weeks now...)

After my frustrating shopping trip I went to the pharmacy to pick up more shots. Since I was about a block away from the cemetery I stopped by the florist and picked up a pint-size angel evergreen bouquet . Then I trudged through the snow and found Colt's headstone at the first dig. I was really proud of myself for knowing exactly where it was, even under 6 inches of snow.

Mother's intuition.

After a few minutes of peaceful quiet...I got in my car and started bawling. It hit me that he would be 2 1/2 now...the perfect age for Christmas. I could almost see the twinkle in his little Christmas eyes.

As the tears dried I headed home to finish my decorating projects. Once upon a time, I used to be OCD about the light and glass ornaments placement on my tree. Today I just threw them on.

Not perfect but it will do.

The star however, is a different matter. I'm in love with it. I bought it in Old Town San Diego at a beautiful little tin shop. Mr. Thompson thinks it looks like "the death star" but to me, it's a work of art.

So while you're telling me what you think of my centerpiece.....why don't you tell me what you think about my new star.

After a full day of...a full day.... I'm pooped.

I think I finally understand why people leave their Christmas decorations up all year.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Christmas Lights

I love me some Coldplay.

I also love me some Christmas Lights.

So what's better than combining the two? Happy Friday to all...and to all a good night.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My BFF, The Nurse

I have a new best friend. Her name is Kim and she is Dr. H's resilient Nurse Practitioner.

She is my new best friend for multiple reasons.

#1 - She not only answered her phone...but she called in a prescription to a California pharmacy for me on Thanksgiving Day. First, she had to track down a pharmacy which was open on a holiday- no easy feat. She did it because (and I quote) "when your job depends on woman's do what it takes holiday or no holiday. Then... you make other people do it - holiday or no holiday".

#2 - She spent 1 1/2 hours on the phone today fighting with my prescription benefits office after finding out that I've been paying full price on some very expensive medicine. When I say very expensive...I mean VERY expensive. 3 shots = $1000. Thanks to Kim....3 shots now = $40. In her own words (and I quote) "there is always a work around!". By George - this woman has found it.

#3 - She was willing to risk her neck to get me medication that had to be taken today because the VERY expensive medicine has to be ordered and won't be here until tomorrow (nobody keeps it in stock). Did I mention that it had to be taken today? Yeah - a problem. Did I also mention that "there is always a work around"? For Kim - no problem. So....while she she spent another hour desperately working her "work around"...God intervened by sending a Good Infertility Samaritan to save our day. Ironically, during my 1/2 hour turned 3 hour appointment...another patient dropped off her extra medicine which was exactly enough to get me by until mine arrives. Turns out our Samaritan has an IVF success and didn't want to waste the VERY expensive medication she paid full price on. Coincidence?

Yeah - I didn't think so either.

Neither did Kim, who after going out on the furthest limbs for me for an entire afternoon...made me promise to name my baby after her.

But instead of Kim...I think we're going to have to settle on "Kimber".

In Mr. Thompson's words, "its a gun thing".

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Good Life


This is the life for me.

When it came down to how were were going to spend Thanksgiving this year Mr. Thompson and I had two choices: do what we've done every year and enjoy the big family feast.... or.... join a lonely little Marine at Camp Pendleton.

Camp Pendleton, I should add, is located by a very sunny beach which has 70 degree temperatures.

Salt Lake City, I should add, was in single degree temperatures with what was proclaimed to be the worst blizzard since 2002.

With that, the decision was a no brainer: San Diego or bust.

And bust we did. After 12 hours of driving...Thanksgiving morning started off with breakfast on the beach as I watched the Carlsbad "Turkey Trot". Beach running never looked so good, especially when that group of gay guys ran by with the one in front dressed up as a Speedo-wearing turkey...with his buddies chasing him wearing loincloths, war paint and Indian headdresses. Simply hilarious - I haven't busted up that hard in years.

The "busts" (pun intended) supposedly only got better from there. When we went to pick Little Brother up from Camp Pendleton....we were told that Little Brother was one of the 50 Marines selected from the 37,000 to have Thanksgiving with Junior Seau (football player) and the San Diego Charger Cheerleaders. They wore their cheerleading outfits - joke was on us. Little Brother acted disappointed but I think that he was a big fat liar. (Mr. Thompson too but for a different reason - he was jealous.)

Moral of the story: don't feel bad for the "lonely" little Marines!

You shouldn't exactly feel sorry for the Thompsons either because we had the best Thanksgiving ever! Minus our Marine and his cheerleaders, we "busted" out of our pants after a buffet dinner at the Ocean House complete with prime rib, lobster, crab legs, turkey....followed by post dinner naps on the beach.

Little Brother finally came around... and I woke up 4 days later with sand in my hair and a smile on my face.

So here's to hoping that he's stationed by a beach for every major holiday. I've decided that beach life is definitely the life for me!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


grat·i·tude (grat'i tood)
The state of being grateful; thankfulness.

There you have it folks. In simple terms. If you want to put it in even better terms...I recommend that you do what all good mothers did in the 1980's (including my own).

You purchase the values based book/song Standin' Tall series by Janeen Brady.

My mom bought these books & tapes when I was around 8 years old and they entertained me all the way through childhood. It must have worked because to this day, whenever I hear the word "gratitude"... I ALWAYS finish it with "snatitude!"and think of the ungrateful Mr. Badger and how he eventually learned to say "th-th-th-th-THank you!". I was an awesome Mr. Badger (side 2 lets you be the actor). Truth be told, it's the part (along with the princess in Happiness and the genie in Work) which eventually earned me Thespian of the Year, 1993.

You heard me right. Thespian of the Year, 1993.

Does that surprise you?! Yeah, me too. It however, does not surprise Mr. Thompson who has resorted to saying, "lose the Nampa High attitude!" every time I make him mad. Then he tells me that I'm not Thespian of the Year anymore.

Reality check.

But this Thanksgiving he's still at the top of my "things I'm most grateful for" list. All because my very smart momma taught me to Stand Tall!

Happy Holidays everyone and "th-th-th-th-THank you!"

Monday, November 22, 2010

Blame Canada

Dear Mr. Canadian Arctic Blast,

You might really be messing up my Thanksgiving beach plans. As if Saturday/Sunday's first winter storm wasn't enough....they say that Wednesday's storm is going to be worse. Seven year blizzard worse. (which means something ugly in Salt Lake City, Utah)

I remember seven years ago. My boyfriend was visiting from the East Coast for the holidays and things turned ugly as our near engagement turned into a break up. Worst part was that he couldn't get a flight out for days due to the storm.

That was the year that I bought a South Park T-shirt which said, "Blame Canada".

Please don't make me break it out. This is the only time you'll hear me say..."I'd rather wear a swimming suit!"

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Sky Is Falling - The Sky Is Falling!

Chicken Little wasn't too far off.

At 6:00am the sky was still falling!

Too bad I didn't listen and do a little more "winterizing".

And just for the record - the child did have a fever when I left for church. I think her dad placed a hot washcloth on her forehead before I went to take her temperature. By the time I returned from church, she of course had "cooled off" in her new snow cave.

Good thing I love the first snow too much to care. After all, childhood only comes once.

Viva la vida!