Thursday, November 8, 2012

October 31 day challenge recap

Yes I have been slacking!
I am pretty sure it is intentional!

Last month I blogged about trying the 31 day challenge on "putting the HOME in homemaking" and I blogged about a specifically challenging day I was having.
Well since I keep it real and I don't put up fronts here or at home I am keeping it up....however after publishing the post and a day later reading it again, I thought how real and personal my feelings were that dropped off my screen! Almost to the point of instead of trashing the post I had to make a plan on how to fix the person who wrote that! I decided that the only way for me to make myself feel like more of a homemaker was to NOT blog about it.
Oxymoron much?
Well I decided to scale down computer/iPad time and upscale laundry and kitchen time.
I made it a point to catch up ALL my husbands and my laundry in our room (which I dare say took me two whole days of nothing but loads and loads of laundry!!!) I got all of it done and was able to collapse the pack 'n play that was up in my room acting as a laundry catch all! That pack 'n play was up from when I was watching my niece and nephew over the spring!!!
Procrastinate much?
Then the kitchen.
I made it a point to not sit down and do any crafty things at night until I had the dishes washed, floor swept, counters and table cleared! Guess what...when you don't talk yourself out of it....IT WORKS!
Who would have thunk it?!?
Also in the way of the kitchen....
I managed to develop a weekly menu schedule... And want to guess what about works! Ooohhhhh ahhhhhh!
And I actually LOVE it!
It saves the 3pm stress about - what do we want for dinner? Do we have everything we need? Who is going to the store? Do we have the funds to go? What do we have at home that I can invent?

So that is what I did in October!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

disappearing act.

So yesterday/early this morning, when  I was creating my 31 days challenge post...I had a huge long post created.
I made a questionnaire that I said I was going to want to fill out every day.
I filled it out for yesterday and everything.

I went to bed at about 5:30am and laid there tossing and turning trying to decide if that is what I really wanted to do. Do I want to commit to such a daunting specific questionnaire? no.
So immediately I sat up, opened the iPad, and checked my blog, and then saw.....for some reason half my blog is gone....ha. Everything from the specifics of my day where I was leading into the questionnaire and then my answers to the questionnaire, gone. Not sure if it is the code that is put in my button...or if God decided I shouldn't commit that much, ha....who knows...

So today is day two of the 31 day challenge.

Lets see what I can get done.

Will report back later.

31 Day Challange: Day 1ish - The basics

So here it is on October 2nd, and I am writting a post that was supposed to be for October 1st.
Why am I late?
Well basically I couldn't make up my mind.
There have been several "challenges" put out there on the world wide web for the month of October.
Instagram has one
Bloggers have several
Twitter has one
you know all the important places..ha.

So it literally took me until about 11pm to figure out what exactly I wanted to do for this I want to blog daily, take random pictures, or whatever....

I picked blog.
I figure with that I can take pictures as well as write about random stuff.

But this particular blog has you choose a topic.
A topic YOU have to come up with.
No guidance.
No rules.
Just you and your subject of choice.

Today has been one of those reflective days.

After an arguement heated discussion with my husband about how I am treating, and disciplining and not being nurturing and motherly, towards my stepson, Aaron...I have had a very internal day.

A plethera of thoughts, both good and bad, have ran through my head.
Why am I the way I am? was the main question....and I have lots of excuses, but not enough ideas on how to change.
so my subject I chose tonight (i.e.early morning) would be

"31 days on how I put HOME into homeMAKER"

but lets get something straight, "31 days on how to sleep in" or "31 days on how to play bejeweled blitz" sounds sooo much easier...ha.

Maybe after 31 days of changing my habits, making conscience decisions, and grinning and bearing the things I try to overcorrect, life will be easier and happier for my family. I seem to be the eyesore that causes Aaron to hideaway in his room most of the time, Jason to feel like a referee, and me to be the offical wicked witch of the lets see what kind of changes I can make by being reminded daily of having to make a Home, homier...

So now here it is, 4:30am.
I am not doing the best of job at getting to bed earlier so I can start my day earlier....
and I have a blood donation appointment at 12:30pm.
It litterally took me from midnight till about 3:45am to make the stupid button for this day photoshop and I will be better friends...maybe that should be my next writting to use and perfect my skills with photoshop"

So here goes, my actual post.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Sad news

.... The title is a bit concerning I know but just bare with me.... Or should I say humor me for a bit.

A few weeks ago I got the bright idea.... Let me combine my three (yes you read right THREE old blogs into this here my "new" blog. So when this blog has documented my life basically as a married woman I had a blog that was from my early dating years with Jason all the way up to my wedding .... I had a food blog where I documented my favorite recipes and last and definitely not least I had a blog where I documented my time with Ainsley. So.....I thought... Why not combine them so I can eventually make a book out of all of that is what I did I followed the instructions given by blogger to upload the blogs to my computer then download them back to the blog I wanted.
Sounds innocent enough.
I followed all instructions.
And then I went through each blog post and deleted all the paid blogs I used to write. I tagged and cleaned up some other posts and finally I posted each one live to this blog.....
I went through checking each picture checking most links and everything was great. I did it! Yay.
Then I deleted all three of the old blogs. Why not.... That's the point combine them do there is not a million of places on the World Wide Web I have to go to visit my pictures or stories or recipes.....
I haven't looked back...
Well that was until yesterday.... I wanted a cake recipe.... I went to the post....this is one I had merged a few weeks ago...and noticed on the picture it was black with a big yellow exclamation mark.
Wow wait a cotton pickin' second!
This picture was here a few weeks ago. I checked other random old!!!!!
Jason said maybe it didn't show up on the iPad. I explained that I read blogs all the time from the iPad. So that didn't make sense.
Then he being all computer savvy and such looked at the code behind the post. And he found the problem....
Well. When I uploaded my blog to my computer I uploaded text only. So the pictures were then being "hosted" by my old blogs....since it was my old blog that I uploaded the pictures to....and since I just uploaded text....and since there was NOT clear information regarding the status of pictures being hosted by the blog itself and not by other places.....and since I DELETED the said hosting blogs........ I accidentally D-E-L-E-T-E-D ALL my PICTURES!!!!!!!

So I spent the latter part of Sunday afternoon crying. Lamenting over pictures lost.... Time spent creating the posts....just sad.
On a semi-brighter note....I can report that between two laptops several old phones and a desktop that got bought by a friend (we hid the files to be retrieved at another time because it was sold in haste) about 90% of the pictures are retrievable....however getting the pictures gathered,organized, and reposted to the right blogs is a task I am not ready for.....ugh

So lesson learned. I will now up load to an Internet picture hosting site .... something like photobucket or Flickr or something....this will save a lot of headaches later.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

9/11 Chat.

I have already written about where I was and what I was doing when September 11th happened.

I am 11 years older.
I am 11 years wiser.
I am 11 years desensitized.

That sounds bad. Desensitized. However it is the truth for the majority of us. 10 years ago, if we heard "Twin Towers" or "9/11" we would have probably shed more tears, a year later.
those words are just adjectives used to define war, high gas prices, new normalcy.
Don't think I am callus.
It's not just me.
It's the way it has turned out..
I have heard many a comedian make jokes, some even crude about that terrible day.
And the day I heard the first joke, I was no longer "too soon".
There was enough time for people to process and heal and now make light of it. Sometimes making light of things helps with continual healing, better to push down the emotions and make a joke at someones else expense.
The new generation of adults coming through were just little kids, and as kids they didn't have the worry and concern. They really didn't know how simple life was before. It was easy. It was less international. It was safe.
Can you imagine in another 11 years... that generation of adults will be completely oblivious to the emotional impact and just see 9/11 as a passage in a history book. The turning of an Era.
As sad as it is. That's where we are headed.
We can pledge to never forget, but we are not committing to never letting go of the emotions that blanketed the entire nation.
And that letting go of emotion is what turns this into a history passage rather than an emotional driven desire to see the United States rise up victorious and get whatever restitution we think we need.
Or did we already get the restitution and now we are comfortable with the new normal....

Don't confuse all this with my lack of appreciation.
I appreciate each and every person who is serving this country and sacrificing their time, family, and lives for me and keeping me as safe as they can.
I have a lot of people in my family who have served or is currently serving in the military. And I couldn't imagine knowing they died in their service pursuit.
Thousands and thousands of families are without loved ones because of 9/11, between the actual deaths on the day of, or the deaths in combat trying to defend..... and for that, I have sorrow...and for that I will try and not take for granted the liberties I have daily....
this event is well on it's way to the history books, and like Vietnam or any of the World Wars, emotions will soon be fleeting.
The new normal is here....and the new desensitization is too.

Facetime with a special someone.

Sunday I got a text from Ainsley's mom.
She asked if we could Facetime with Ainsley on Monday.
So we made a date.
At 2pm on Monday, we would get on and visit.

I couldn't have asked for a better thing!

After Ainsley got out of the bath at about 2:30 (Texas time) she got on her mom's phone and facetimed me.

She was a nut.
She was soooo grown up.
She was the same ol' Ainsley.
She was perfect.

We acted silly making silly faces to each other.
She told me how she had a dog, she then corrected herself and said it wasn't a dog it was a pup pup.
She showed me a flip she learned in her gymnastics class.
She gave me a tour of her room
Showed me some of her toys.
She told me she was now 4 years old
Showed me the bunny rabbit we had stuffed for her at build a bear
She put me in a cabinet
She put me under a puzzle box
She took me outside for a "fantastic time" as her mom took the pup pup potty.
She let me watch her put a puzzle together
She told Jason to give me a wet willy
She kept saying "Layla I just have to tell you something"
She asked me if I cried for her while she was gone (i used to ask her that jokingly when she came to my house)
She showed me one of her "school books" and sang me her ABC's
and and hour and a half later, i finally had to let her go.
She was sad.
I told her I had to go cook dinner and she told me to put her on the counter so she could watch me.
It broke my heart to see her little face turn sad when we hung up.
I cried.
a lot.

I am not over it.

And I am not going to be.

But I will talk to her as much as possible for as long as I can any time of the day no matter how sad I may day it will be easier....

Monday, September 10, 2012

Everyday in life kinda thing

Okay so, I am in a rut.
Not just a blogging rut.
An everyday in life kind of rut.

I hate feeling like this.

I need to change things, but pin pointing what it is drives me insane.
I always have a list of things I do that I want to be better at...
a list of things that if I put a little effort into I will be in such better state of mind and feel accomplished.
And sadly, this list is pretty much the same each time I am in a rut.
But finding the will power and desire to get it done...near impossible.

  • housework, pretty much ALL aspects could be improved on. (again, that is why my blog has the name messy but loveable)
  • sewing, I have started a facebook page, and soon will have an etsy up and running for the skirts I am selling, but when I have a lack of people interested, I find that I have a lack in desire, but when I have a few people wanting skirts, I feel pressured and rushed and don't like the final product.
can't win for losing in my own book.
  • my weight..I have had a lapband fill in the last month, however it hasn't really helped me lose weight...but if I got off my lazy bottom and went for a walk, or use the gym membership I am paying monthly for, I am sure it would improve.
and on the same page just about....
  • health. I have in the past been diagnosed with diabetes, however i was a bad patient. Jason has recently voiced concerns and wanted me to go to the doctor to follow up...I have done it, and i have been better at checking my blood sugar levels and taking my medicine, next I have to make better food choices.
  • organization, lets face it, I read too many blogs.
    And while I know that the bloggers I read are not perfect by any means, and that they are not showing off their lives to be boastful, and to hide the ugly, it still isn't hard to imagine that their lives are all organized with their chalkboard to do lists, their well mannered sweet behaviored children and their menu/meal planning boards, with a cleaning schedule, a reading schedule, a bible study schedule, a blogging schedule and a date night schedule. It makes me envious...but the common theme to most of those who do run a well oiled machine of a life is being organized.
    I lack in the organization department,
    Which is funny because a lot of people outside my home think I am ubber on top of it. ha. little do they know, I live in piles of piles of piles.....only to be hiding more piles in my garage and closets, ha.
  • blogging - I want to be on top of it.
    Caught up, not feeling bad about what I haven't posted that I wanted to....
    I want a weekly thing that I do, like fabulous foody Fridays you know something catchy, something that shares with my family and friends who read this a little bit about me...
    I want a pretty awesome blog....I don't care if I get paid a million dollars to write, I don't care if I have a million people following me...but I do care for journaling, and writing and connecting with people who are in the same walk of life as me, and or who have passed through and can share some wisdom, or about to start their journey in where I have been so what I write is helpful and informational for them...
And last but not least....

  • I need to develop a greater walk with God. I need to grow stronger in my scripture study, personal prayer and fasting, in my ministries, in sitting and listening to what God is trying to talk to me about, but I always seem to be busy.
    Not necessarily busy with anything important, but if I am always plugged into the world around me, I am not allowing the Spirit to minister to me.
    My pastor gave us a great message on Sunday.
    He was talking about being still and trusting in God. Sometimes we try to jump ahead, and direct ourselves when God put us somewhere. And in the quiet times after he put us where he needs us to be, we try to jump the gun and move on...we take God's silence as His way of allowing us to move ourselves through this life, when He is trying to work in the background and we were supposed to stay and trust Him and His plan.
    I have a hard time with this.
    I try and try and try to over think, over try, over compensate when I think God wants me to SHOW my obedience rather than just BE obedient.
    I was always told we show God through our actions that we praise and worship Him, when in fact being still and not trying to play boss is what we are supposed to do sometimes.
    This brings up many questions....especially about this infertility journey we are on... I have to pray for this more, because I now am wondering this whole "wait and trust" topic, was this directed towards me and trying to jump the gun of God's plan and create a baby through ivf when he has a prefect plan, but I am not staying and trusting. (prayer warriors, i ask you to cover me in prayers for answer to this.)
To help in all of this rut busting.....I usually make lists.
and then I make a list of my lists
and then I make a list of my lists of my list.
and then I make a list of my lists of my lists of my lists.
you get the point.
I am so detailed and listed that I get overwhelmed and my lists just sit there and get dusty because I get defeated before I start. (can I get an amen?)

I love lists.

I feel like I focus better when I can physically mark something off...

I feel like lists can help others too, if they want to jump in and help, look at the list, pick something, and go and do it.
but I never share my lists.
I am kind of stingy with it. not that I don't like to share in the responsibilities, but I get soooo ocd that if they don't do what I feel like is a good job, then whats the point in them helping, I might as well do it myself.
Then because I am not able to get it done like I want.
I don't do it.
so it gets left undone
and I get in a rut..
and then I post blogs like this.
and vent.
and then I feel better about it
but it is still undone.

soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, there is the wicked cycle.

hopefully I can end it.

any suggestions?

Monday, August 27, 2012

Monday Listicles - Top 10 about 2012

Top Ten Clues That You Are Living in 2012

1. The morning paper has been replaced with checking your phone for updates on facebook, instagram, twitter and any other of the sorts.
2. Taking a picture is as easy as lifting your chin and pursing your lips together....can we say fish face with no double chin?
3. If you don't extreme coupon you might as well not sit at the "cool table"
4. There is an App for that....there is probably an app for this very list.
5. You can record,pause and rewind a live t.v. show,
6. Remember sitting by the boom box for a song to record, then you would have to listen, stop, play, rewind, to rehear it, or get the words, now lyrics are available at your fingertips.
7. When you look for something on the internet you are "googling'. I have even said something like this "Go to and google the word bakesale". any kind of searching is googling. That is now and adjective.
8. You can self diagnose with webmd, and you know you are dying at the littlest sign of a cough...we have developed a death complex.
9. You keep up with people via facebook, instead of visiting with them in person, writing on their timeline is less painful.
10. The very top way to know I am living in 2012, I am 32 years old. enough said.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Pearly Whites...

Jason's insurance changed this month. We are now paying out the nose for insurance. And we are slowly and expensively finding out that even though it "sounded' better (i.e. cheaper co-pays, better maternity benefits) the plan is not covering the things his other insurance did, including IUI.....woof.

BUT with that, Jason is on a kick about using up what things we get with his insurance. Open enrollment was in August since his company merged, but they are on a calender year plan, meaning his benefits restart in we have 4 months to use up what we have, and then turn around and do it again next year.....

SOOOOOOOOOOOOO we started at the dentist.

Thursday Jason, Aaron and I went and saw a new dentist.
To tell you the truth, and you might be disgusted....I haven't been to the dentist in almost 10 years.

 Aaron had 5 small cavities, and had them all filled, as well as a basic cleaning.
Jason had a few cavities filled, as well as needs two teeth pulled (that we had to schedule) and needed a deep cleaning.
I had 5 small cavities that were filled, as well as a basic cleaning ... I have a crown that needs to be replaced and they had to schedule that as well..(can you believe this is all that was needed after 10 years of neglect)

The Afters.
 Jason had his gums numbed because his cavities were deep, and it was so numb that he was unable to move his top lip well. He likened it to having botox, ha. Here was Jason trying to kiss me goodbye. I love love love it! I laughed and laughed.
 Alyssa already has a dentist, and just came along for the ride. Jason Aaron and I all had rooms at the same time, and Alyssa had a fun time going room to room making fun of us.... so in light of her laughing at us, I am putting the pics I took of her at her new orthodontist office getting examined for continuation approval....This was a few weeks ago, and very flattering! ha. Fun times.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Funky Feather - check it out.

So since I came out of the closet in my last post about not being pregnant....I thought I would let you know of something I am doing to get up my I can do the pricey IVF.......

I have opened a facebook store, and it will soon turn into an etsy one once I get it all set up.

I will be selling

handmade hairbows and headbands
handmade sweets
upcycled scarves
upcycled jean skirts

and anything else I may or may not find to share with the masses.

I already have two people who are in the market for home made double layered carrot cake....

So it is a work in progress, but one night fiddling with photoshop I created this....honestly I like it, but I think I might end up adjusting the colors....we will see....

Thursday, August 23, 2012

July's IUI, and some praise - but not what you think.

So I have put this post off for so long,
I have been plotting and planning on what I was going to say.
I wanted to get all the details down
I wanted to inform you on all the ins and outs....
since this all happened around the time my grandmother passed away....
I don't have the emotional energy to put THAT much effort.
So I am biting the bullet....
I am going to give you the gist,
and move on.

I did an IUI.

July 14th, I started my menstrual.
July 16th - 20th, I was on clomid, this time around (first time with the specialist) 100mg/daily.
sometime in between all this there was HUGE family dramas
July 23rd, after my local walgreens had my prescription for my trigger shot Ovidrel in there system since the 16th, they never told me they couldn't fill it and that it had to go to their specialty pharmacy. that day, I contacted the specialty pharmacy, and they over nighted the medicine, and didn't require payment up front. (just today I got the $97 bill in the mail for the shot)....
July 26th I went in for a sonogram, they were looking for follicles that were at least a 22cm, my largest one was an 18. Because the doctor didn't feel like it was large enough, he suggested I come back on Monday.
July 26th, the evening after my grandmother was admitted to the hospital, for at this point they thought was a blood clot, and were going to do a CAT scan on her.....I went to visit and we hung out and chatted...she told me she didn't have to worry about me, and that all my baby stuff will work itself out and I will get to be a mommy.
July 30th - Did another sonogram, the doctor was confident I would release one egg, they gave me my shot, and was told to come back in the morning with my husbands sample and they would do the IUI.
July 31st - At this point my grandmother had been at home with hospice since Saturday, and the end we knew was very near.... I hurried to give the sample, came back two hours later to have the procedure.

Now, I know Jason is not 100% comfortable with watching me in a doctors office with a doctor doing his I didn't make him come back in the room with me. But secretly I wanted him with me. It was weird to know that I "conceived" and my husband wasn't around...
The doctor gave me good news about Jason's sample. His counts were much higher than it was in the past two samples he gave, which was promising.....
The procedure was done.
I was tilted backwards for 15 minutes.
At this point Jason came back with me to wait.
 We leave with the instructions: If I don't have my cycle by August 14th, then take a pregnancy test.

My ovulation calculator on my phone said I was to start on August 15th. I am pretty in sync with that thing, so I was figuring it to be on the dot correct.

August 6th, went to go get blood work done to check my progesterone levels
August 8th, called my doc for the blood work, and the nurse said my level was at an 8....they are looking to see a 10 or higher to determine it is a probability that I didn't ovulate even with the trigger shot.
(hows that for a waste of $100...ha.)

August 13th, my birthday.
I was pretty upset, I had a very bad birthday.
So I figured I would take a test, just to see.....the box does say that it can let you know "upto 5 days before your missed period" so I thought why not.
With everything that happened......(huge family dramas during the same week the doctor said I should probably keep calm, my grandmother being sick and then dying) I figured it was my turn for good news. Who cares what my progesterone levels were, women have had low numbers before, and it worked out for them....I need something to make me happy and peppy....come on positive test.
so I took a test, in secret....I didn't want Jason to get all hyped up....
I waited.
and waited.
two minutes takes.for.ever.
not pregnant.

so yeah. two days later I start my period.
and I haven't done anything since.
I haven't contacted the specialist.
I havent tried to get on any infertility treatments this month.
for many reason.
namely we are tight on money right now.
my baby fund was used to pay for the IUI. and so it is now empty.
and according to the doctor, our next step is the ivf.

I think about adoption.
but that scares me.
and it cost tons of money as well.
the ideal situation for me is that I just naturally get pregnant.....

But right now....
the Lord has something in mind for me.
A lesson to learn, a habit to develop, a household to straighten up....

not sure what I am to do, but I trust in the Lord's timing, I will have my babies.....although it seems to me right this needs to hurry up...Jason is about ot 39 years old and I am 32..... but, there is just something that the Lord id wanting, and it is up to me to wait.

And I have come to the conclusion, if it is not the Lords will that I am to naturally have children, I will love whom ever and whatever God has in store for me. Right now I have Alyssa and Aaron at home....and being a step parent is not easy, and it is parenting, if that is all I am given, then thats all I need to have.....
The Lord knows my desires. He knows I want to experience having a baby in my womb, and to feel it move and grow and know the little thing before it knows the world....God knows that I want to raise my own baby, watch it develop into the toddler that will make me laugh as Ainsley did, and i will not have to give it up to someone who moves far away.
God knows I want to be the sappy mother who cries the first day of kindergarten and takes a million pictures, the mother that gets to know what it feels like to have a little heartbeat who knows mine, and who will look up at me and say "Mommy I love you".
He knows I want to be more than just Layla the wife, Layla the daughter and sister, Layla the step mom.....I want to be a childs superhero, I want to be Layla the mommy.
God knows.
and even if that never happens for me.
Or if it happens to me at the age of 60
I praise God for this time he has given me to prepare for the life He wants me to have.
I praise and thank God for the ability to reach out here on this blog and share my experience, to give comfort to those who are in the same process and feel so alone.
I praise God for this moment in my life, even though I have experienced a lot of sad and hurtful things in the last month....I still love and praise my God.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Minnesota or Bust!

Jason and I were asked to be the "College and Career" leaders of our church. Well neither of us really knew what that we just do what we do to them and feed them. We have tried to organize a few events, but no one comes, so if we just tell them we are going to come over eat and hang out, they all show up! ha ha.
But, with that, Brandon and Natashia have pretty much been at our house at least three nights a week, for the past few months...but we have hung out with them for a while now....and when they planned to get married in Minnesota, they asked us to come, and asked me to cook the sides. Natashia loves the way I make my green bean bundles and corn. So we agreed to come help.

Once we had the plans in place, I developed a Minnesota bucket list....
  1. Go to an Amish community and visit.
  2. Go to Mall of America
  3. Eat cheese curds.
Brandon and Natashia throughout the last year. Believe it or not, I took every one of these pictures!!!

I flew up to Minnesota on Wednesday morning....When I got to Minnesota, I had to search and search and search for a rent car, because they had some kind of soccer tournament going on up there and everything was pretty much rented out.

breakfast of champions
Once I met up with Natashia, we ran to Target, then got ready for her bridal shower for her home church. The shower is the whole reason I went early. She wanted to me to be there with her. They had some great food (I thought it was an homage paid to Texas when they served a taco salad bar...ha ha ha)
She scored some great gifts, and the decorations were very beautiful. It put to shame my little shower I put together for them in June!

 Wednesday night, Jason, Joseph - the best man, Katrina (both a part of our college and career group) Neda and Rodney all drove in our newly fixed suburban.
Our car had engine and transmission problems, and it took FOREVER to get our car back.
They got to Bloomington on Thursday afternoon. I know it was only a day, but I couldn't have explained how excited I was to see my husband. When he walked into the church, I was standing on a chair hanging a curtain for the reception, and I hopped off and ran to him and gave him a huge hug and kiss....I missed him something awful!
We didn't give them a minutes rest, we put them right to work! Lots of wedding preparations! Their church has mid week service on that night we went to church. And then afterwards we went to dinner with the group from Minnesota and the crew we brought from Texas.

Friday we were shopping for the reception food,  more decorating! Between all the hustle and bustle of getting the wedding put together, we all decided to take a few hours out of our day to go and be tourists......scratch that off my list....

There is a Nickelodeon theme park smack dab in the center of the mall.
OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH who lives in a pineapple under the sea...... Here is just a little proof that we were actually there at the mall. ha ha.

Katrina, me, Neda looking like tourists!!!
Scratch that off my list!!! Here is me eating Cheese curds! Thank the Lord for free samples! I personally think that the cheese curds taste like a waxy cheese stick....I hear they are better when they are fried.

Peeps are my favorite thing about an Easter basket. I personally feel they are not tasty till Spring time, but it was fun to see a whole store dedicated to just marshmallow yumminess.... and how fun is it to say "hanging with my peeps"??? ha ha.

 Now, for the main event. I got to Minnesota on Wed, and we went straight to work. Thursday and Friday we were setting up the decorations for the wedding and the reception...We went food shopping for the whole reception....but Saturday July 21st, even though I was busy running around like a chicken with my head cut off being a wedding plannerish-personal assistant I also was cooking the beans and corn, over seeing the reheat of mashed potatoes and Jason grilled 45 pounds of chicken.....I still was able to sit back and watch my two college and career kids pledge their lives to each other. It was just about the sweetest ceremony I have seen! I couldn't be a prouder person of the two of these kids. I felt as if my own flesh and blood was getting married, and I cried like a baby!
The beautiful couple....I was honored to be a part of their big day!

We left Minnesota on Saturday at about 7ish, and we drove home. We pulled into church at 10:10am on Sunday just in time for Jason to jump behind the sound board and work the service. Krisha (the substitute sound person) couldn't have been more excited to see Jason! ha ha. Here are a few pics of us stopping in Iowa.
Did I mention that while we were up in Minnesota, our engine on the truck messed up again, and so we had drove all the way home with a stuck cylinder in our engine, yeah, we just wanted to get home, so lots of prayers went towards the quick and safe travels!

Got to love Joseph! He was showing us on the map where the race car museum was, just in case we felt like going out of our way to go see it. ha ha ha.

 At the end of the trip I was able to scratch 2 and 1/2 things off my list.....Mall of America, check, Cheese curds, check.....going to an Amish, but Natashia's God Dad, the person who gave her away, was an Ex-Amish, AND he had Amish bread brought to the wedding. I am going to count that has a half....ha ha ha. AND I brought some bread home, and now I wish I could bake Amish bread!!!! ugh, i want more!!! ha ha ha.

Monday, August 13, 2012

One More Crazy Thought Process!

miscellany monday at lowercase letters

    August 11th
  • Is it weird that I am already doing my 2011 year summary.....I figure if I do it a little at a time, it will more than likely get done because I won't be overwhelmed and give up too quick!
  • I hate my tile floor! The floor is bad bad bad, the weird marble floor in the foyer and the funky stuff in the livingroom. dumb dumb dumb. I miss carpet.
  • I felt inspired the other night. No not the tamale day, the night before.....I put away some laundry that was sitting in my livingroom for about 5 days, I swept the kitchen, cleaned it better than it has been for several months, and I watched some crochet videos-I am looking to pick up grandmas hobby......wooohoo
  • Jason has been convicted to have everyone in the family pick up a musical talent. Aaron is playing the bass for youth, Jason is thinking about picking up the guitar, Alyssa wants to learn the drums, but I think Jason is thinking more like the violin, and I am going for the piano...I can't wait! I have wanted to play the piano since I was like 4 years old.
  • I am pretty sure I need to wash my hair. I shower, but not always wash my hair....gross, maybe, does it make doing my hair easier, yes. Free tip of the day: Dirty hair is easier to style because the grease on your scalp helps your hair to hold styling products and heat.
  • I have like 432,566,345.8 million tamales. I will be giving some away, but alot of them will be put in the freezers for when I don't feel like cooking!

          Updated on August 13th...
  • I have learned to not start a random thought post, then save it to publish later, because then some of the thoughts are no longer as of right now, I have not froze any tamales, I have already washed my hair...
  • The maid fairy didn't come and clean on my birthday, boo.
  • I am hungry, and not for tamales.
Thanks for reading my random thoughts.

Happy Birthday to ME!

With today being my 32nd birthday, I have a few things on my wish list....some of them may or may not be doable, like....
  • cheaper gas prices - can we have 1997 back??
  • A maid/organizer/teacher of all things perfect running household/proverbs 31 extraordinaire...
  • 120 pound weight loss, with no stretchy skin, or left over stretch marks
  • a booming blog, that is making me extra cash so I don't have to get a job.
  • A pair of stylish glasses
  • A positive pregnancy test, followed up with a successful and easy pregnancy.
  • A size 9 shoe (I am an 11) with normal size toes and no corns...
  • Consistency in things I say I will do
  • A considerable amount in savings with no temptations to use it.
  • Window treatments - I have been alive for 32 years, and living on my own for 12 at least, and I have never ONCE put up I considered grown up without them?
  • Breakfast at Ihop, with grits and everything!
  • Dinner that has crab in it.
  • soft maxi skirts
  • a pair of comfy Toms
  • the whole nativity scene from Avon

and last but not least.....
  • One more day with my Grandma, the happy go lucky grandma who is not hurting or I can soak up her stories, her love, her......
But since I can't have the last one especially, I am left with nothing more than my memories and mementos, and luckily, I have one I saved on my voicemail last year, unknowingly.

Enjoy....I know I do!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Tamales on the brain.....causes problems

The other day I made some extra meat so I froze it for just the right meal.
Today I woke up and thought "hmmmmm, I think I want some tamales"
So, I started making them about 1pm with my friend Krisha.....
By the time they were done, it was 10:30p.

I am sure it doesn't normally take so long to do a few dozen tamales, however, I steamed them in two batches and also took a small break in between, and also made a carrot cake in the middle of it all....
I was a bit busy. So when there is tamales on the brain, the problem it causes it,
an all day back hurts now! ha ha.

 mixing the masa. there is no real recipe... it does take chicken broth, chili powder, salt and garlic powder

Spreading the masa, it is a technique that only a few can conquer.

Here is Krisha and me....being conquerors.I have made tamales several times, this was her first time, and she did fantastic!!

The loot.

Steaming the tamales

After I made Mexican rice, refried beans, and meat chili sauce, we had a finished product...

and yes, you should be jealous.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Happy 4th Birthday Ainsley Grace!

On July 21st, my sweet dear Ainsley turned 4 years old.

Since she has left on June 1st, I have got to talk to her a few times.

This last time, she told me that she had a bed for me to come sleep in when I come to visit her.

It still breaks my heart to talk to her, but at the same time I am excited each time I do.

The Tuesday before her birthday I sent her a birthday package.
We had talked a few days before and she told me she wanted the following items..
a book about Brave the movie
and a bunny

well, I had given her a build a bear bunny already, and we programmed two sayings in each hand, one saying says
"Ainsley Layla loves you, you are my favorite"
and the other hand says
"Ainsley say your prayers, Thank you Jesus for my day, Amen"

So I ended up buying her
  • two skirts
  • a Brave book
  • a book about love
  • bath tub crayons
  • a fun shirt
I think there may have been a few other little things, but I can't remember now.

Anyways, On her birthday Ainsley's mother sent me a text message of Ainsley with a few of her gifts...she has gotten so big!!!!! Happy Birthday my sweet sweet girl!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


My last post, I had every intention of getting you updated....
My last post, I had a list to write about for the listicle link up - my favorite topic - annoying noises....
My last post, was before July 26th. the day my grandmother last had a real conversation with me.
My last post was before my grandmother said she "needed me" to be by her side.
My last post was before the doctors sent my grandmother home with hospice.
My last post was before we sat as a family gathered from all over the country, by my grandmothers bedside.
My last post was before I had heard in a jumbled almost in coherent words "i love you too" and "layla, I am ok"
My last post was before July 31st at 6:30pm...the time my grandmother passed away holding my baby sisters hand.
My last post was before I was asleep in my grandmothers bed when she passed away.
My last post was before we had to grieve as a family.
My last post was before the person in my life I could always trust to be on my side laid lifeless in a bed in my aunt and uncles house.
My last post was before we had to bury the only grandparent I ever knew.
My last post was before I had to create a new normal in my head, a new place I could go to when I wait for my phone to ring, wait for my grandma to call to ask a random crossword clue, wait for my grandma to tell me she just wanted to hear my voice.
My last post was before......

before my world was changed.

So, now almost a week since her passing, I am able to write. I am able to say she passed without falling to pieces....

Hopefully you will get another update soon, but just know, this was all BEFORE.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Holding me Accountable, Again

The last time I heald myself accountable for upcoming blog posts, I was actually lets try for round two....
So heres how this goes, as I write the blog, I will then put a link to that post here on it's you will only have to find this page and then go from there....

Posts to be up in the next few days include

Pre IUI Journey

Insurance Faux Pas

Minnesota or Bust

Ainsley in Cali and Her 4th Birthday!

Christmas in July

Birthday Plans.

Post #100 and 1

I blog for many reason....

I have always loved journaling...I have done it since I was a kid.

I have always loved to much so I was on the yearbook staff for three years in high school.

I have always loved to connect with people...I can work a crowd at an event and turn around and have five new bffs....

Some people feel like I share too much....
Some people who are going through the same things as I am wished I shared more.
I have gotten comments going both ways.

I have always wanted to just say what I want on here...let all the beans spill right after I type the words "Dear Diary"
but this blog isn't hid underneath my mattress, in fact can read what I write.
That idea is exciting and terrifying all at the same time.
People who love and support me will log in and read about my latest antics, funny stories, or medical issues....
People who I don't necessarily care for will read through, combing each word for arsenal against me, reading in between the lines wondering if they are who I am writing about....each vague word is taken personal and they have satisfaction thinking I think that much about them....usually not the case.

Wouldn't a completely anonymous blog be wonderful, a place where I can write and write and write not having to worry about others thinking too much or too little about it...a place where I can vent and be angry and not have to worry about oversharing.....

I guess I can do that here, and make this a private blog......but if I do that then sharing my infertility journey would be pointless.......

So for now I will keep this blog the way it is going............. infertility, random lists, and a public service announcement or two.....

This is 101 blogpost here at

I have had several on my other blog....
that was my blog for several years, after my wedding and a few unhappy incidents, I took a blogging break, and just decided to restart with this one....

**Update** 9/11/12 I just merged all my blogs together, so technically this is not number 101 anymore.

Yay, for blogging. I hope I am helping you along on your journey through life.....

On another note:

I squishy heart love my husband......and here is why..... this is facebook yesterday
And then read my pastors wife's comment.
She is such a sweet and constant person in my life. She called me after i texted her a prayer request for my sanity that Monday because I felt from the start it was a rough day in the making...and guess was...but her words just echoed through my head during the day and I knew what she said to me was true and probably the best thing anyone could have advised to me! I squishy heart love Sister Duvall as well!

Monday Listicles on a Wednesday Morning.

Monday Listicles on a Wednesday Morning.

I will learn how to better manage my time to where I can get these things out on the day the blog writter intended....but for now, my turtley pace must due...
This week List would be something near and dear to my worries right now.....but next weeks is even more specific to me, ha ha stay tuned to that...

Monday July 23,2012 Listicle is....

  1. I am a year older, and as of right now, I am physically childless, so I automatically go to the thought process "IF I have a kid at 35, when he or she is 35, I will be 70.....thats old!" basically start compairing my age to the age of my ficticous kids...
  2. I can never remember anything I "want" for my birthday, but this year I think I have resolved this issue by putting a pinterest board together....lets see if it works.
  3. Being disappointed by who remembers and who doesn't
  4. The happy birthday wishes on facebook from people who never talk to you otherwise (I am guilty of this)
  5. Feeling let down when the people I love don't try to make it special for me, no matter how special I try to make theirs..
  6. Life still goes on even if it means you have to pay bills, get tickets, etc on your day.
  7. when it rains on your birthday, growing up my mom and grandma have always said, if it rains on your birthday you have to share your gifts with everyone....yuck!
  8. Chocolate cake. I do not like store bought chocolate sheet cake. gross! and marble cake makes me mad, ... for some reason I feel like the chocolate dries out bad.
  9. The older you get the more of being a grown up you have to to wish I was 18 years old, and know the things I know now, the difference I would have made for my would have been a super priority, saving money, just better choices all together.
  10. last but not least, the reason birthdays are no good is because no matter how hard I want to stay young, each August 13th I get that much closer to grey hairs...............I don't have any yet, not that I know of, but they are coming...and with the stresses in my life right now, they are just right around the corner.
next week, 10 sounds that drive me bonkers!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Lists Lists Lists

I was reading a blog today and saw she participates in "Monday Listacles" basically a day where they have a topic, and we make a top ten list about it and link up, uh can we say Right. Up. My. Alley!?!?!
Well it is.

So I am gracing you with yet another link up for Monday, and I may or may not love that it is a list.

Today's topic... "Thanks"

1. Thanks to Decorators Warehouse for being open 365 days a gives me a smile in my jinggle bell soul to know on the hottest day of the year I can be magically transported to a fun and emotionally pleasing time....yay for Christmas!
2. Thanks to God for giving me a rainbow, the biblical symbol of God's peace and fresh start.....this was the view from my front door.

3. Thanks to the people who finally got my car fixed and now it is back has only been 3 months, my dad is glad to have his car back and we are glad to not have to fold ourselves up to get into our car anymore
4. Thanks to my cousin who is the only person who has donated to my online baby fund. (this is serious, not sarcastic...)
5. Thanks to a couple in our college and career group, who are so cute that when one was away on a mission trip the other would come over so he could skype using our webcam....they were cute and reminded me what it feels like to love someone so sweetly.
6. Thanks to friends writting random notes for you to find......'tis so sweet!

7. Thanks to the hours and hours and hours of time I have spent on pinterest I now feel inadequate and untalented...but I still go and stare and stare and search and search.
8. Thanks to reading blogs.....I feel the same way as number 7, but I am still hooked.
9. Thanks to everyone who read this blog, but I wish more of you would comment...I am still trying to find that online friend who is going through similar things I am with the infertility, but no one is speaking up......hello, I don't bite, hard.....
10. Thanks to my husband who loves me despite the emotional rollarcoaster I have been on this last few weeks. And who bought me $45 worth of crab this weekend even though we probably shouldn't was soooo tasty!

Miscellany Monday - Random Random Random.

  • Let me preface this with :Jason and I are not fighting! Not in the slightest! but....after the last 3 days of having an involuntary money hiccup because of his job going through a merger, and not paying him when they were supposed to.....I have felt the stress that could lead to fighting about money....I could never before today what would drive couples to fight so much about money.....ack! STRESSED OUT! ha.
  • Packing for my trip to Minnesota has been procrastinated too long.....the washer doesn't go fast enough! ha.
  • I am going to my sweet friends Minnesota...
  • I have three things to do when I am in Minnesota.....go to Wisconsin and eat cheese curds, go to the mall of America, and find some Amish people...
  • I wasn't interested in Amish when I lived in Illinois, but now after watching so many shows about them, I want to go and give them all hugs!
  • Let's see how many times I can say Amish and Minnesota in one post.
  • Good thing this is a blog post all about random stuff.
  • I need to return library books tomorrow so I don't get late fees while I am in Minnesota, please, if you have my number, shoot me a text and remind me.
  • I am trying to decide what to do on the money front.....I want to go to work, I am not sure I want to babysit, I know I need money, but I need something that will be flexible with my infertility appointments, and somewhere that they know I may not come back once I get pregnant. ugh, I am so needy. ha.
  • I had to cancel my fill in my lapband today because of the aforementioned money hiccup. makes me sad. I needed it today.
  • I have found that I make to do lists for thing I need to make a list about. what does that say about me?
  • I haven't caught onto the instagram bandwagon enough to really understand it, its purpose other than doing quick edits to the color of my pictures.
  • I heart pinterest.
  • When I go to Minnesota, I will be there by myself all day Wednesday and part of the day Thursday. Then Jason drives up. Fun stuff.
  • I am excited to plan a babyshower for a girl at church who does nothing but crave sweet cereal....I pinterest ideas, and my mind is flowing! Fun times!
  • I want someone to teach me how to be OCD. Maybe that will help me clean faster, better, and with a better attitude.
  • speaking of OCD. I read one of those ecards floating around on facebook, and it said "I am going to hold OCD support meetings at my home, not because I have it, but maybe it will drive one of them crazy enough to clean my house.
  • I have told people that I do not need a birthday present but if they want to get me something, then donating the amount they were going to spend on a gift to my babyfund would be super helpful.
  • I go in today for my baseline sonogram. here we go again.
  • I think we got jipped, because when I was a kid, I was pretty sure that I thought that 2012 would have flying cars and hover boards, *shakes fists at the back to the future trilogy*
Thanks for sticking with this randomosity of a post!

For the record:
Minnesota (including this one): 7
Amish (including this one): 4

Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Latest on the Baby Front - Actual RE appt.

So can I say this from the start.......
Having a second opinion, will probably lead to a third, then possibly a fourth so on and so on. I have learned going to the appointment that no one doctor has similar opinions, and trying to decide the who's and what's and why's of this infertility thing may just take me having to get my own medical degree and treating us myself. ha.

With that said, I literally busted into tears sitting right there talking to the doctor on Tuesday.

I was, or I guess technically, still am SOOOO confused (more so at the two completely separate answers - not necessarily to the info given) and almost at the point of frustration at the same time excited and ready to get this party's that for some mixed emotions.

So here goes the appointment review:
Hold on to your hats folks, we are about to take a rollarcoaster ride...
So this doctor, we had seen January 2011 back when we were recommended by a friend at the time to see a specialist to get a move on our baby having.
At the time (2011) Dr. Le - a Reproductive Endocrinology (RE) said that I am still young, and since Jason had a kid before, everything should work out for us, and if not, then we should consult my doctor, then proceed from there.
Cue July 2012.
We show up to the appointment I scheduled at the recomendation of Jason's urologist.
He welcomes us.
We explain, I had three rounds of Clomid cycles (round 1, round 2, round 3)with no pregnancy, and Jason was diagnosed with male factor infertility as a result of varicoses.
We also explain that the urologist says we need to look into having IVF - ICSI as that will be the only way for us to have children until Jason can lose 100 pounds and have the surgery to repair his veins.

Off the bat Dr. Le, says the that surgery suggested is unsuccessful at correcting male infertility issues and that he has only dealt two cases of men who had this surgery and it resulted in any kind of difference in their sperm shape.

 WHHHHHHHHHHHHHAT? That's not what the urologist said......who do I believe? AHHHHHH.

Then looking at the sperm analysis (SA), Dr. Le said these three things 1)he questions the integrity of the results because it wasn't done at his lab and 2) says that egg penetration by the sperm have nothing to do with the shape of the little swimmers (not his terminology) but has everything to do with motility (how fast) and quantity. 3) for Jason to stay on the two meds the urologist has him on because they are improving his count and motility, even if it is just a little bit, an improvement is an improvement.

WHATTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT? This whole time we are stressed about their shape.
Why is this?

Dr. Le explained that the shape has nothing to do with it because, if more of the little guys can make it through and into the uterus, then there will be more at the egg trying to get in, the more there are trying to get in, the more the egg wall is compromised and so there will be success in getting in. The problem is knowing the quality of the sperm getting in.....if it is bad dna, then the pregnancy would not be viable....good dna then things proceed......
I. WAS. SO. CONFUSED. (i am pretty sure this was about the point the doctor handed me the box of tissues and I felt like my head was spinning so little to compare it to from the urologist)

But Jason and I agreed, that what Dr. Le said made sense. He has had lots of experience on both the male and female side of reproduction, and we have physically seen his we will go with it.

so with this there is good news and bad news.....

Good News
  • because shape has nothing to do with it, (cue tina turner in my head "whats shape got to do got to do with it.....) IUI should be the first thing to try.
  • My insurance covers IUI
  • IUI is quicker, less painful, and much much cheaper.
  • I get to start this process as soon as I have my next period (which should be any day now)
  • This clinic has super cheap rates for iui and ivf.
Bad News
  • Jason's surgery may not correct the shape, so therefore having kids naturally in the future may not be possible. ever. (minus that is a miracle from God....and we all must believe in those.)
  • With IUI we have "natural" chances to conceive....and with every attempt naturally you only have a 15% chance of creating a baby!
  • Once IUI has been tried and is unsuccessful, we are urged to go ahead with IVF - PICSI (the one with the p because if low quality sperm they want to make sure these attempts have a better success rate with a good dna cluster).
  • IVF will still cost thousands and thousands of dollars.....can we say fundraisers! can I get an amen?
  • on top of all the meds we may have to be taking, I now get to research suppliements aka : Male Prenatal vitamins....yay. not.
In review:
IUI is when they clean up Jason's sample, get the strongest of the swimmers and insert them into me on the optimal day, and let them do their jobs....naturally from that point. The procedure for me is similar to the past clomid regimen I was on....a little invasive, but nothing intolerable.
IVF is when they harvest many eggs from me (as many as  my body will produce at one time could be two could be twenty) then the best of the best is taken from Jason's sample they are both directly put into a petri dish, and they do their job to meet up with each other. Then once they are fertilized, and monitored, two of the best developed embryos are then placed into my uterus on the appropriate day of my cycle (the day my body would have naturally had the eggs in the uterus) and then my body will accept or deny them. With this procedure, once the eggs are fertilized, there is at least a 65% success rate, with at least 50% of the successes are twins.
IVF - ICSI same as the regular IVF EXCEPT for instead of putting everyone in the petri dish, the lab will physically insert a sperm (remember, the best of the best) into the eggs.....the watching, and waiting and inserting into the uterus is still the same.
IVF - PICSI is the new one (there is a few hand drawn diagrams at the bottom of this post that was the doctors explanation.) same things as IVF-ICSI except before the egg and sperm are joined, the sperm go through a very rigorous test to make sure the dna quality will produce a viable embryo.
 As the doctor explained everything, he doodled on paper. I can appreciate a good doodle! These doodles didn't mean much to you because you didn't hear the words that he was saying as I photoshoped a few notes along with his original drawings.

IVF - PICSI explained.

stay tuned......for updates, hopefully sooner rather than later!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Making that money

So I will have a more up to date, and detailed blog about this later....but I am begging you all for ideas and suggestions.

I need to make some money.

We got the offical from Jason's urologist last is a for sure thing that we will have to go with IVF-ICIS to have a baby until he can lose the weight to have the surgery.

So, besides getting a job, which is in my near future (know of anyone hiring?).....I am making denim skirts (upcycled from jeans/pants)  and hairbows that I will be putting on soon.
After that....I am looking to do a dessert drive/bake sale....and maybe a garage sale or two....but other than that, I HAVE NO CLUE how to raise the money I need to have this procedure.

Anyone have suggestions? Fundraisers are soooooo much easier to execute when it is for a church event....personal monatary needs are everywhere, everyone needs do I get the money I need when I need it. ha ha....isn't that the ultimate question??

So if you have ANY suggestions on fundraisers, please please please either comment here, or email me at

Thank you in advance!!!

UPDATE (July 6,2012)
Several people have asked about an online donation for our IVF, and so I set up an account with gofundme.....
this is pure donations, and sorry it is not tax exempt!

There is also a link on my side bar......

Angels Embrace.

The last few days before Ainsley left I made sure to get many many cuddles. Sadly, I spent most of these cuddle times sniffiling and crying. My heart hurt so much for this little girl.

 Nikolas and Victoria spent the night that last night as well. So Ainsley got to play with them. And Nikolas L.O.V.E.S. Ainsley. She would walk into the room and he would bum rush her. He didn't know his own strength and would pretty much almost knock her over. She loves him too.

 I was getting her changed from play clothes to nicer clothes so we could go out to eat. And she said to me "Layla I love you SOOOOOOOOO much" then she would hug my neck. She plastered her face against mine and said "Now take a picture". Ha. The first one was her being sad because I told her that she was not going to see me anymore after she told me she was going to California.... Then the next picture ws us laughing because she said she would hide in my closet and stay here.....then the last picture is her "sweet" smile....
 I asked Ainsley where she wanted to go for breakfast. And she specifically asked for Cracker Barrel. It was a mess of a brunch (we got there about noon). I had breakfast, she wanted a hamburger, but by the time we were done eating, she ate most of my bacon and a lot of my pancake. At that point, it was all I could do not to cry every second, so I would have given her just about anything she wanted!

After we ate we went and bought her whatever she wanted from Cracker Barrels shop. She ended up with a bubble gun, a sucker of Texas and a harmonica. Ha.
While we were waiting for Jason to finish picking up the check, we were standing by the Willow Tree figurines. She saw this one figurine of an ange holding a small child and she said, "Look Layla it is just like me and you"
and that was the exact moment....

We checked out, and left.
On the way down the road, I told Jason what Ainsley had said about the figurine, and without asking me, he turned the car around and went back to the restaurant. He then told me not to argue with him, and to go inside and buy the exact figurine.
I got inside and bought it.
I read the description of the figurine, and realized, it was perfect.

Angels Embrace : "Hold Close That Which We Hold Dear"

While waiting for Will (her future step dad) to pick her up to leave town, we did a few things. We went outside and played with her bubble gun, popped little pop-its (she loves them) and then we also played with sidewalk chalk.
In the picture on the right (to see the actual figures turn your head to the right slightly!), she told me she drew me and her, she pointed to the figure on the left and said "this is you because you have a big head and two feet" and then she pointed to the one on the right and said "this is me because I have a small head and I like to hold your hand"

After playing outside, we came in, and sat on the couch together, as we hung out she fell asleep on me. So I lifted her up, and held her. I spent the next hour and a half just like this...

This is the sweetest way for me to think about her. Our last picture.

Right about 4:00pm Will came and picked her up. I thought I was going to be all big and tough and hand her over and walk them out and small talk as if they would be over again tomorrow. But as soon as Will walked in, my heart sank, the tears rolled and I couldn't physically hand the sleeping angel over. I felt like someone was taking my own flesh and blood from me. I passed her sleeping body over to Jason, waved goodbye and ran to my room. At that point I cried harder than I think I ever had. I was heart broken.

Since June 1st, I have talked to Ainsley once on the phone. I don't cry as often (maybe once or twice a week.....tonight because I have to see her stinkin' face all over my blog) and I still miss her like crazy. It is funny the little things that remind me of her....and it is way more than just seeing her little face in pictures...

Today is day 28 that I haven't seen her...


The one thing I have learned in this process is, I do not think I could ever be a foster parent. I fell so deeply in love with Ainsely, and she started out as a "craigslist job".....that I do not think I could go through that kind of heartbreak again.

We are trying to plan a family vacation out to California to visit her. Please pray for our finaces to be able to get this trip planned and executed!!! I need to see her soon! I might jump a plane and go out to see her before an actual vacation....missing her hurts so bad!!!