Friday, September 30, 2011

Three Day Weekend

Finally its the weekend.  Time for some therapeutic shopping for the husband.  That of course means gun shopping.  Sounds bad I know but not really since he is just trying to get a wooden stock and foregrip put on an old shotgun that was his granddad's and some parts he needs for another gun to have it work with different caliber ammunition.

He needs this play time.  That's all I'm going to say.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Baking Warms More Than The Heart...

...It also warms the hearth and home.  I got home from my DBT class today and the house was a rather chilly 64 F.  I have the thermostat set for 63 F.  I'm trying to lessen my footprint on this earth where I can.

So I decided I would use the oven to make my lunch of two corn tortillas and a baked potato.  Potatoes are low sodium and high potassium foods plus the corn tortillas I baked were only 5 mg of sodium.  I get a full stomach and good for me food.

I couldn't justify turning the oven on for such a small thing as my lunch and using the microwave draws even more electricity than you'd think.  The oven being gas is a gem to cook and bake with.  So, I'm baking white bread today.  Only 8 mg of sodium per slice in this particular recipe. 

I have no idea how its going to turn out as I've never used this recipe before.  For all I know I will have wasted all those ingredients but its still worth the experiment plus my house gets heated for the afternoon.

  As my dough is still rising the above photo is what I hope it will look like.  Below you can find the recipe I used and modified of course.  I used olive oil instead of spray oil to oil the bowl and loaf pans plus I used the olive oil in the recipe where it states vegetable oil.


1/4 cup lukewarm water
2 TBSP acceptable vegetable oil
2   1/4 ounce packages of active dry yeast
6 cups all purpose flour, divided use plus more as needed
1 3/4 cups fat free milk                                                     
3 TBSP sugar                                                       
Vegetable oil spray

Pour water into a large bowl.  Add yeast and stir to dissolve.  Let stand for 5 minutes until mixture bubbles.

Stir milk, sugar, and oil into yeast mixture.

Gradually stir 4 cups flour into yeast mixture.  Beat with a sturdy spoon for about 30 seconds, or until smooth.

Gradually add up to 1 1/2 cups flour, about 1/4 cup at a time, stirring after each addition, until dough starts to pull away from side of bowl.

Lightly four a flat surface; turn dough out onto floured surface.  Gradually knead in remaining flour for  6 to 8 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic.  (Dough shouldn't be dry or stick to surface.  You may not need all the four, or you may need up to 1/2 cup more if dough is too sticky.)

Lightly spray a large bowl with vegetable oil spray.  Put dough in a bowl and turn to coat all sides.  Cover bowl with a damp dish towel and let dough rise in a warm, draft-free place (about 85 F) until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

Punch down dough.  Divide in half and shape into loaves.  Lightly spray two 10x5x3 inch loaf pans with vegetable oil spray.  Pout dough into loaf pans.  Cover each with a damp dish towel and let dough rise in a warm, draft-free place ( about 85 F ) until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425 F.

Bake loaves for 25 to 30 minutes, or until bread registers 190 F on a instant-read thermometer or sounds hollow when rapped with knuckles.  Invert  bread on cooling racks.  Let cool for 15 to 20 minutes before cutting.

Serving size 1 slice
Calories 103
Protein 3 g
Carbohydrates 20 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Total Fat 1 g
  Saturated 0 g
  Polyunsaturated 0 g
  Monounsaturated 1 g
Fiber 1 g
Sodium 8 mg
Potassium 56 mg
Calcium  20 mg

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wednesday Woes

Well its Wednesday and I've got news to share.  I thought about making a post about my weight but decided that its well, not worthy of an entire blog post.  I did lose some weight this week.  I had gained quite a bit last week from all the eating out my spouse and I had done.  For the month I've lost a grand total of 2.8 pounds.  Its not much and its still far from what I wanted but its still in the right direction.

My hope of the Lupron injections calming down my endometriosis pain and bleeding came to a hault last night.  The pain started up before the shot and never went away after the shot.  No, the pain got worse and the bleeding started again.  Thankfully it has once again subsided.  I've kicked J to the living room on most nights now because I've become such a restless sleeper with the nightmares.  The pain also causes the restless sleep.  I'd love to have him sleep next to me but right now its just too difficult for even me to get to sleep.

I gave myself the injection last night.  I had it all prepped for J with the areas swabbed that needed to be swabbed.  He almost dropped the uncapped needle.  I then took it away from him and said I'll give myself the shot.  His hands were a bit shaky.  Maybe its because he had gotten his flu mist, anthrax vaccine and another shot yesterday.

Yes, I said Anthrax.  Its all part of him getting ready to deploy.  I'm still hopeful that someone will let him stay behind but I have my doubts.  Today he is drawing his gear for the deployment.

Because he is going to be getting equipped we canceled our marriage counseling session that was scheduled for today.  Counseling helps with the infertility issues we are facing.  As I see more doctors, and J falls asleep during the appointments, he feels like he isn't getting enough attention.  Its true, the focus has switched to my health and finding ways to improve it before we get pregnant.  I'd rather not have this particular attention.  I'm starting to feel rather used.  I feel emotions that I'm having troubles keeping to myself, thank you hormones.

Yesterday I had an appointment with my PCM, Dr. G., to renew two scripts.   Dr. G. listened to my heart and lungs and noted my murmur was audible.  Yes, I know I have a murmur.  I know it could cause more issues in pregnancy and I'll deal with that when it happens.   I did walk part of the  way to my appointment and J picked me up and drove me the rest of the way.  He was doing his pre-deployment stuff at something called SRP and with one vehicle I've learned that I can't depend upon him to be there to give me a lift.  Even though I'm not supposed to be walking far because of my back and ankle problems I find it one of the best modes of transportation.  So I walked the 2 miles back home, in pain, but I did it no less.  He had to get back to SRP and couldn't be there to chauffeur me around.

Now I'm off to go bake cookies for the soldiers at the COF.  Every other week I bake one particular type of cookie that is highly requested and this is the week that it gets baked. So today its Chewy Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip Cookies!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Day 3 Of Lupron Injections

Sunday night was the first night of the injections.  I managed to give myself the first injection in this IVF cycle.  It wasn't too difficult and my hands only shook a little as I was trying to draw the Lupron out of the vial.  Last night it was J's turn to give me the injection.  He was still nervous but no where as nervous as he was on Sunday night watching me stick my abdomen with the needle.  He was cringing on Sunday night. 

I offered to give him a shot but he refused.  I'm a bit evil at times considering I wanted to use the biggest needle we have on hand which would be the 18 gauge!  Oh, but the REI nurse said I could give him his antibiotic in an injection.  However, she was laughing so I think she didn't take me seriously.  Darn!

Around the 10th I'll be decreasing my current Lupron dosage to 5 units and start taking the next two medicines concurrently.  Three shots in one night sounds daunting especially since they won't all be the small insulin needles.  The Gonal-F is a big honking pen that looks like its going to hurt even if the needle is relatively small.  The Menopur has a Q-cap on it and a 25 gauge needle versus the 29 gauge needle of the insulin.  Still it beats the heck out of the progesterone which starts at an 18 gauge to draw then a 22 gauge to inject.

Now for the side effects I've been experiencing with the Lupron.  I've been flushing in the face shortly after the medicine is injected.  Forget restful sleep.  I've been getting increased nightmares the past two nights along with night sweats.  The headache is still there.  I've had increased urination at night which is causing my potassium levels to drop even more.  I have hypokalemia to start with so when I pee even more than usual I'm losing more of the potassium which will in turn cause my muscles to cramp up.  I had one hell of a charlie horse in my back last night.  Maybe I should increase my potato chip intake since potatoes are high in potassium, yes higher than bananas.

One good thing to note, no weight gain from the Lupron as of yet.  I say yet because I just started it this week and I've been told by family that has taken it that weight gain goes along with Lupron like steroids and weight gain are a pair.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Anniversary Weekend

Photo of our dessert at the Olympic Timber House Restaurant

Last year we stopped by this particular restaurant and decided we liked our meal choices so much that we'd go back again the following year.  What better time to go than on our anniversary?

We went to Poulsbo and Port Townsend for the day after getting a late start.  To save time we decided to take the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and the floating bridge cutting 30 minutes off our normal time.  Usually we take Hwy 101 up to Port Townsend and back again.  Not trying to avoid paying bridge fees but deciding to take Hwy 101 back home gave us the opportunity to stop at the restaurant with the really delicious food.

Luckily our wedding anniversary day dawned bright and sunny in the area we chose to travel to.  To the left is a photo of downtown Poulsbo.  We'd actually never been to this town before but after reading how it was a viking settlement we decided we had to stop and have a look around.

J loved the little gift shop called the Viking Maid.  Well he actually just loved the pewter drinking implements they had on display.  I thought the trolls and gnomes were really cute but over priced. 

 We stopped into just one of the town's antique shops.  I would have liked to have stayed longer but we needed to get to our final destination which would take up most of the afternoon.  So after a lunch at  an Italian restaurant in Poulsbo we hit the road once again.

By the way if you are ever headed up on this route north gas can be found cheaper at the Chevron in Chimacum than can be found on our military installation by almost 10 cents a gallon.  While that might not sound like much it is when you are refilling your gas tank.

This is a photo of the outside of the Timber House Restaurant.  The interior is worthy of quite a few photos too alas I didn't feel like offending the other diners with my flash photography nor make them feel uncomfortable by snapping pictures without flash while they try to eat in peace.

The only bad experience I had at this place would have to be a single diner that was overly loud about wanting to find a place to get her smokes and the fact that she was flossing her teeth at her table.  No manners.   I wonder if she was one of those kids that parents dreaded bringing out to eat in public.  One would think that by her age, had to be mid 30's, she'd of learned some manners.

Okay now to get away from missed manners to the food.  This trip J had the prime rib with the roasted garlic cheese toast  and I had the All natural Filet Mignon with a side order of clam chowder.  For dessert J had the creme brulee and I had the the chocolate raspberry cake.  I would highly recommend these choices along with the first dinners we ate there which were: Prosciutto Chicken and the All Natural Rib Eye.

Friday, September 23, 2011

High Risk Demands

As you can see by the photo I'm cranky today.  Its not just because of the pain I'm in.  Its not just because I started bleeding last night and I shouldn't be as of yet.  Its because someone just decided part of my life isn't that important to warrant the writing of a letter.

I had my appointment this morning with Maternal Fetal Medicine to evaluate my risk during pregnancy if the IVF results in a pregnancy.

I ran into a few snags.  First in March of 2009 I went to ER because I felt really odd.  Turned out that I had had a heart attack but they couldn't determine exactly when.  They gave me all the necessary treatments I would need but oh wait they lost the documentation on it.  GRRRR!!!  Thankfully my spouse was my witness and can testify to the fact that they stated I did have one.  It does help when I have to go appointments like I did today where they don't believe me.  Thanks Madigan for losing those records!

Yes, I do have the back ups from testing to show episodes of tachycardia from the holter monitor.  Most strenuous thing I did while wearing it was vacuum.  That shouldn't have made it go that high either.

Okay back to my major complaint.  I'm high risk with or without the heart condition.  That much was determined this morning by Dr. M.  However,  Dr. M. is refusing to write a letter stating as such that I will be high risk if the IVF cycle proves fruitful.  He said its not within his power to write such a letter.  My husband said, "actually it is.".  Dr. M. didn't like being caught on that one.  J's commander has asked for medical evidence to back up this issue that might arise.  The commander only wants a letter stating what the risk could be.  Its not that much to ask for.  But again I got refused.

Yes yet another doctor stated he wouldn't write it.  As a matter of fact he didn't care.  He stated that I would have to call the American Red Cross if I got pregnant and was put on bed rest.  Well if J deploys I still need letters from my doctors as to what is to be expected for that Family Care Plan in the event of such an emergency.

I hate getting the brush off.  Its not like I'm asking to keep him home if I'm not going to be pregnant.  I am just asking for a bloody paper stating what the risks are.  Is that too much?  I think not.

With the high blood pressure I have before pregnancy I was told today that I have a 50-50 chance of developing preclampsia, eclampsia, abrupto placenta, placenta previa.  Add in the cardiac issues and the doctor is telling me that basically I need to rethink the idea of even conceiving if indeed I do have those issues as it would be too much strain on my body. He's a guy, he can have kids.  If he were a she and wanted to have children but was infertile I think the doctor would then understand that I am indeed willing to die for it.

He then ends the discussion by telling J and I that we need to go back to REI and tell them that they can write the letter.  I tell Dr. M., again, that they were the ones that sent me to him to begin with because they said they couldn't write the letter.

So now I'll call REI and tell them what he said and start this mess all over again.

I'm so glad tomorrow is my wedding anniversary.  We need a day out of town.

****Update.  Just spoke with REI.  They said, "Its the Army, we can't help you." in response to my request for the letter.  If it was a definite thing that I was already pregnant they could possibly do something for me if they determined I was high risk.  But since its preliminary they can't help us.  However, they are deciding if they want to cancel my IVF cycle now that they realize that I have a cardiac factor.  Great, I try to help out and I get things more screwed up.  I have to learn to just keep my mouth shut.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

I've Got A Clue

This week my husband and I have been playing board games instead of watching television.  Why?  Well why not?

There isn't much to watch on television that is all that entertaining.  I've also been getting bad headaches, sometimes migraines.  I'd rather not be trying to rid myself of a headache with the television on and bright lights in the room.

This is where the board games come into the picture.  The room we play our games in is the dining room and the light isn't overly bright there so it doesn't hurt my eyes.  There aren't any loud sounds or buzzing noises coming from a standard board game either.  Besides its creating some bonding time between us.

J got me the board game of CLUE for my birthday this year.  As a child we had the game at home but never really played it except to browse through the rules.  Now I know how to play the game and actually enjoy this new version where you can get your character killed off.

I've found out that J has a curse upon him when he plays clue.  The first three rounds we played of the game his character was the killer.  He told me that there has never been a game played where his character hasn't turned out to be the killer, well until last night.  Last night I tried something for him to break that curse.  I asked him to let me choose his character.  It worked.  The next round he chose his own character and again he was free of the curse.  He actually won too.

However the night was marred by a problem.  I started with really bad, felt like knife stabbing me, pelvic pain.  It continued through the night and its still there today.  I'm hoping that tomorrow it will be gone and won't be back.  This weekend we celebrate our 6th anniversary and we have plans to travel.  I'd rather not be in pain.  I don't want to have to stay home or end up in the ER because of the pain.  J is worried about me. He keeps checking his cell phone every 20 minutes to make sure he doesn't miss THAT CALL, if I need to go to the ER.  He's such a wonderful guy and I'm glad that his co-workers aren't telling him to shut off his phone, the Army can request him to do that with his job.

I was able to sit through my morning DBT seminar without passing out from the pain.  Well, see I have a tendency to hold my breath instead of breathing through the pain.  I was bent over in pain but I let the instructor know first about the problem and she was understanding.

I'm starting a rumor.  It was Scarlett in the kitchen with poison and I know she's trying to kill me!  I mean why else would I be bent over clutching my lower abdomen if she wasn't trying to poison me?  Yes, yes, I know its the endometriosis but I can still laugh at myself right?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Starting Over

Today was my first counseling session with my new psychologist.  I did an intake appointment last week Friday with a psychologist but she wasn't the one I'd be seeing today.  No, she was just the one who determined the professional I'd be a best fit for.

I figured because of all the abuse I had received in my childhood I'd best go see a counselor again.  Its been a few years since I've done a tune up on my DBT skills.

The IVF cycle is already gnawing away at my patience.  I start the injections in just a few days.  I'm not sure how its going to affect my moods as the birth control already gives me migraines.  So with that said I made the appointment, went to it and to the follow up.  I'm now signed up for the 6 week refresher course on my DBT skills.  As long as I remember to daily work on my skills I should be able to get through the remainder of this IVF cycle without too many tantrums.

DBT is Dialectical Behavior Therapy.  Which really is just a set of techniques used for coping with situations.  Say I want something but I don't think I deserve the item.  I need to take a few minutes to rationalize just why I don't think I deserve the said item.  If I don't deserve the item for reasons such as: its way out of my price range, I've already bought myself a reward or someone needs something more with the money I'd spend on the said item I have to think about it more.  Do I really want it?  Why do I think I don't deserve to treat myself to the item?  Am I putting too many others above my own self and am I devaluing my own self worth by doing so?

More examples would be how I manage my anger.  I have a temper.  There I've said it.  But who am I hurting by letting my temper rule?  Me or others or both?  I could have a temper tantrum without regard to who I hurt but, it would be better and more productive to think more rationally with explaining why I'm angry.  Its not easy though, we all know that.  It is easy though to just let the shit fly.

It does go deeper than just the two examples.  I've pulled out my notebook from my last workshop on the subject.  It goes back almost 10 years.  Just one more reason why I need to refresh my skills.

Well enough about this.  I'm hungry and tired and I need to get those cookies baked.  After all it is Wednesday and I always like to have baked goods to give to the soldiers my husband works with for their Thursday treat.  Three hours sleep means I'd best get them baked so I can take a nap too.  I can shovel food into my mouth and do my baking too.  I'm particularly good at that multitasking exercise.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


There won't be a weekly weigh-in for me this week.  No, I've been sabotaged.

Last week I had dropped an additional pound the next day after my weigh-in.  I was doing so good and really proud of the fact that I was only 1 pound away from my first 20 pound goal.

I got on the scale today.  J had yet another 3 day weekend.  I've now gained back 2 pounds.  Yup, I've failed.  My body went into starvation mode yesterday because I never got to eat my first meal of the day until after 1300 hrs.

I can handle eating out on the weekends.  I was good this weekend and I pushed about on the plate most of my food, ate the veggies and the leaner bits of protein, transferred most of the garbage food from my plate to his and what do I get from it all?  Weight gain in just one day.

My pelvic region is swollen and almost hard.  Physically I resemble the me that would be about to get her period but being on the pill with no break in for another two weeks I find that its quite impossible.

I didn't get the water intake that I needed yesterday, I was definitely short of my water by several glasses.  I was short on caloric intake even with the chocolate bar I ate for the migraine headache.  I tried, I failed.  I could explain to all of you how my husband sabotaged me and the real reason why I didn't get to eat until after 1300hrs yesterday but it's way too personal to share.  No it wasn't sex.

So now I'm very far behind on my weight loss.  I was hoping to have 10 pounds off this month.  When ever my husband comes home this always happens.  My stress level goes up, my diet gets ruined, demands are made on me and I end up caving into them which makes me put me last.  I can be my own worst enemy. 

I haven't even had time to exercise.  The most exercise I've gotten in the last 24 days since he got home is housework.  Speaking of which, I have two loads of laundry to do still and they aren't going to go do themselves.

I'm angry with me.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

New Day New Adventure

I'm steaming forward on my own adventure today.  J is out fishing with friends and I'm going to venture forth try out new things too.

First on the agenda today was to get the mums positioned in the flower beds.  I purchased three rust colored mums in various sizes yesterday afternoon.  After I got them in place today, they are still in their pots until I decide to put them into the ground, I realized I needed three more mums to fill in the remaining empty spots.  So today I'm going to go find red ones.  I like red mums.  The rust ones are pretty too but the red ones will brighten the garden up even more.

I have a hair appointment scheduled for around noon today.  I need a hair cut in the worst way. With all the split ends I now have on my hair its knotting up easily and breaking even quicker when the wind picks up.  I'm not planning on getting it colored, as the grey is just starting to peek through its not worth the money I'd pay out to have it professionally done when I still have a few weeks left on this dye job.  So a new cut and perhaps I'll get is straightened too.

Its starting to rain.  That means J might be back early since its getting to be really cold here again.  I told him before he left this morning that if he catches it he has to clean it and I might cook it.  Might being the word.  I like fish but sometimes touching raw fish kind of grosses me out unless its sushi.  Go figure that one out because I can't.

So if the rain doesn't let up I'm going to have to figure out some indoor adventure ideas, maybe some shopping would be good therapy for me.  I'm kind of bummed out today.  I went down a whole pound more on Thursday morning only to gain back on Friday morning 1.2 pounds and this morning I weighed another 0.2 pounds more.  WTF!  Yeah I'm really bummed out about that.  I've been exercising too.  I walked another 4 miles yesterday so I've no clue why I'm gaining back the weight.  I'm so close to that first 20 pound goal and its driving me bat shit crazy to gain even a small bit back at this point.

I also need some me time due to the migraines I've been having almost every night since the 13th of August.  My birth control pills give me migraines.  I'm hoping the lupron injections won't make them worse.  Within 30 minutes of taking my birth control pill I get a migraine.  Thinking of the baby I might get to hold in my arms next July is what is getting me through this IVF cycle.  I know the pain is probably only going to get worse with all the injections I'll be getting.  I may have to hide in a dark corner with no loud sounds in my vicinity for the next few months. 

So today its time apart so that J can relax and ditch some of the stress he is carting around.  It time for me to take care of me too.  I have worth, I respect me, I deserve some spoiling too and I need a hair cut!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Celtic Soda Bread

I made bread last night.  I found a new recipe in a newsletters and I adapted it to fit my needs thus making a whole new recipe of my own.

The photo is the bread I made.  J just loves it.  Its great toasted with butter.

Now for the recipe.  I call it Celtic Soda Bread.

Celtic Soda Bread

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Grease and flour a loaf pan.

In a large bowl combine the following dry ingredients:
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup white sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup craisins (dried cranberries)

Mix well until the raisins and craisins are coated and separated as we'd rather there not be too many lumps of fruit together, however it does happen occasionally. 

In a separate bowl mix together with a wire whisk the following wet ingredients:
1 egg
2 TBSP olive oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups of buttermilk   ***(buttermilk can be made using 1 1/2 cups regular milk plus the addition of 1 TBSP plus 2 tsp of white vinegar.  Its best to do this in a glass measuring cup and let it set a bit to curdle before adding to the other wet ingredients)

Make a well (hole) in the center of the dry ingredients in the large bowl.  Pour into the dry ingredients the wet ingredients.  Stir gently until well blended.   Pour into the greased and floured loaf pan.  Bake at 350 F for 1 hour and 15 minutes (75 minutes) until golden brown.  Immediately turn out of loaf pan onto a wire rack and let cool.

Wonderful the next day for breakfast toasted with a bit of butter or jam.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Good Gravy I'm Known For My Food

Most of you know by now that I'm called the "cookie lady" at my husband's work place because each week that he is there I bake a batch of about 5 dozen cookies for soldiers.  But did you know that I'm now stopped in the commissary and asked for my recipes for gravy?

I have no problem sharing my recipes, including the uber secret family ones.  I have no children to pass them on to and I want the world to enjoy food as much as I enjoy making and eating it myself.

I was a little surprised to be asked by one of my husband's co workers, when we saw him at the commissary, for my gravy recipe.  The reason I was surprised was that this soldier had never eaten at my house.  Must be my husband has been bragging about my food.  Okay so my head swelled.  I asked him what one in particular he was looking for and he said a white sauce.

White sauce is so easy to make and is a basic staple for the beginnings of many a delicious dish including a cheese sauce it could very easily be turned into.

All you need to start with is:
3 TBSP of butter that you slowly melt in a sauce pan on low
3 TBSP of flour that you added into the melted butter forming a paste
1-1 1/2 cups of milk that is added to the flour butter paste

Add salt and pepper to taste as you low boil and continously stir the sauce until thickened which should take less than 5 minutes, more likely 3.

For the cheese sauce, add in 1/2 to 3/4 cup of your favorite grated cheese.  But just make sure you watch how fast the sauce cooks and continue to stir or else it will burn!

My husband isn't a big pork eater but now that I've made for him two pork dishes he's changed his mind.  I would usually make him a beef dinner but I'm not able to easily digest beef without repercussions.

I pan seared pork chops, added in sugar, salt and water, let it all boil down until it formed a gravy and voila' I've got yummy pork chops and a gravy to serve over my home made garlic mashed red skin potatoes.

I've even convinced him that a pork roast made with an Island sauce is to be enjoyed.  My own sauce creation of course.

The other night I had him eating the wild mushrooms from the chicken barley soup.  He never liked mushrooms before.  He was used to those grey rubber eraser type canned mushrooms that his mom cooked with, well so did mine.  No wonder he hated mushrooms.

So yes, I'm a bit vain about my cooking.  I just can't understand why more folks don't cook from home.  Recipes are easy to follow with the internet being so handy so that one can look up the unfamiliar cooking terms to make sure its done right.  Eating at home is so much less expensive than eating out and if you eat at the table with family it can help form bonds.  Just shut off the television, put cell phones on vibrate, and make the hand held video games banned from the table.  Good food should be enjoyed without distractions.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Diet Day 43: The Weigh In

Well I still haven't reached my first goal of 20 pounds lost but I am that much closer to it with the 2.4 pounds I lost this week.  I still need to lose another 1.8 pounds to reach that first 20 pound goal.  Maybe next week?

I've been dealing with a lot of anger issues of late.  Some people are really getting on my nerves.  So I walk off the anger.  I was really upset yesterday and walked about 4 miles.  I know walking is good for me and the 4 miles that I walked yesterday only helped with the weight lost for the week.  However, I wish people would stop making me so angry.

I have a raging headache this morning.  Its feeling like it could go to migraine but I doubt it will.  Or I hope it won't.  Every time I have to go on OCPs (oral contraceptive pills) I get bad headaches and the migraine too.  Usually I'm put on topomax while on the OCPs, but not this time as I can't possibly take that particular medicine while in an IVF cycle.

Back to the weight loss.  I still have another 42 pounds to go.  My clothes aren't baggy on me, no they seem to be shrinking in the wash.  I feel so fat but then again I still am fat and far away from being off that BMI marker that says I'm obese every time I step on my Wii balance board.  I haven't played with the Wii in a week.  I've just not been feeling all that well with the headaches.  Who wants to exercise when their head feels like its going to explode?

With any luck the headaches will soon disappear after I end the OCPs, but I won't be off them until Oct. 2nd. I start the Lupron injections on Sept. 25th.  I've only taken Lupron once and I can't remember how it affected me.  If any one that has taken that particular drug has any advice on the side effects please inform me of what to expect. 


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Time For Chicken Soup

The more I listen to family the more I want to say hypocrite out loud.  Yesterday was not the best of days.  I decided I would defrost chicken to make my own chicken soup in the crock pot later today.  What I didn't want to hear was that family was not supportive of our decision to have IVF.

So I'm going to make chicken soup today.  Chicken barley and mushroom soup to be precise.  I've heard that chicken soup is the cure all so why not see if this will cure my bit of anger towards a few to remain nameless family members.

Seriously how can you not believe in IVF if you are so Pro Choice to the point that you believe in pregnancy reduction for the safety of the other fetuses?  How is it any different to create a life by medical science then to take one by medical science which is not "natural" according to most religious doctrines?  If you support the taking of the life then you should be open minded enough to support the creating of one.  Sheesh some folks really know how to turn my crank.

So yes, I'm really hopeful that this crock of chicken soup will help ease my mind, fix my nausea and vomiting and help reduce the physical pain of my endometriosis and fibromyalgia; I'm currently have a fibro flare.  Its asking for a lot I know but its obviously asking for way less than what I expected from certain individuals.

Maybe just maybe if this IVF cycle results in a baby they'll have a change of heart about the procedure.  If they don't and they slight my child because it wasn't created by natural causes I'm going to get really pissed off.

Monday, September 12, 2011

All My Ducks In A Row

As of this morning I made the final two appointments that I was required to make in order to possibly secure that letter recommending that my spouse be allowed to stay with me during part of the hopeful pregnancy.  I had to make a few extra calls this morning but it was worth it.

I called my REI clinic to ask why the MFM (maternal fetal medicine) folks had yet to call me back.  I was supposed to be called back within 24 hours of Thursday.  Its Monday here.  After chatting with Cpt. S-D. I explained the situation about the prior MI I had in March 2009, the beta blockers and water pills I've gone off in order to prepare my body for pregnancy and the fact that I have to see my cardiologist biannually.  She seemed quite concerned all of a sudden about me.  Its not like I didn't tell her the other day about the issues.  Whatever.

I called MFM directly after getting the number from Cpt. S-D.  They asked if I was already pregnant, I wish, and I told them that no I'm not but we are going through an IVF cycle.  I'm now scheduled for the 23rd of September.  At last we might get somewhere with that letter if they choose to listen to me and actually pay attention to my chart.

I was able to get my walk-in appointment scheduled with Cardiology for October.  Yes, a walk-in has to be scheduled, this is Tri-Care we are talking about.  I won't be seeing Dr.K. as he is retiring.  I will be seeing Dr. V. instead.  Never met the chap but I do hope he will at least take a few minutes before seeing me to familiarize himself with my file and Dr.K's notes.

So if I seem like a bit of a pessimist today its because I'm in pain again today.  Bear with me folks.  Most of the time the doctors I see I rarely will see again.  They aren't interested in my feelings, nor the fact that my spouse will deploy or any other conditions that I have other than the reason that I'm being seen in their specialty clinic.  If they took the time to actually look through my computer chart it would mean they wouldn't be able to see as many patients as they do now.  It means that I will take time away from someone else.  Its sad but true.  I get shoved aside because they are understaffed.  I've been given medicines that I can't take and refuse to take that the doctors think will cure my ailment without realizing that they conflict with the other medicines I'm currently taking or might cause another one of my medical problems to flare back up.

I'm not a hypochondriac, I do have real medical issues.  Its not all in my head unless you are referring to the neurological problems from the fibromyalgia.

So I'm hoping that with the four new doctor appointments, all specialists, maybe one will be able to help me out.  Remember I'm not asking the Army to go to war understaffed, they have plenty in my spouse's job for help.  I am, however, asking that they consider letting him stay home for the entire IVF cycle and part of the pregnancy.  If I miscarry REI has told me they'd be able to get me into another cycle right off.  I can't do this if he is gone, well at least I can't do it without banking his sperm and who's to say I'll even think of doing that if I say miscarry at week 12?  He'd be gone by week 12!

So I'm still frustrated.  I'm hoping for some good news soon.  Meanwhile I can't take pain meds for the cyst pain as the acetaminophen isn't working on the pain nor percocet for that matter.  I'm not going to suck it up either, I'm going to write about it, talk about it with my spouse, and in general just moan from the pain.  I'm coping the best way I can without pain killers.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Endo Pain Puts Damper On Weekend Plans

I had plans for this weekend.  Some how I knew they weren't going to come to fruition.  I tried.

So instead of going on a little mini vacation for just J and I we are instead getting the transmission flushed and oil changed on our vehicle.  It needed to get done so at least that will be one thing ticked off our weekend list.

This morning the endometriosis pain was bad enough that I couldn't bend or sit without pain.  ****TMI here****  I also started passing clots again.  Yeah, I knew the cramping yesterday meant something was up.  I just knew yesterday that some how the plans for the weekend were going to get mucked up.  I shouldn't be bleeding either since I'm on a piggy back of birth control pills with no empty pills in-between to cause a bleed.  The doctors know.  Its to be expected.  Yeah, well they aren't the ones in pain now are they?

I stepped on the scale, same weight as yesterday ( -16.8 lbs now) and my lower abdomen is sticking out further than yesterday.  If I didn't know better I'd say I was pregnant, but we all know that I'm not.

I know the photo isn't the best but that's me.  I've still got 43.2  more pounds to go until I hit my goal weight.  We'll see how much the injection meds mess with the weight loss goal.  Two more weekends until I start the Lupron injections.

Well I've shared my woes with all of you.  I'm not in the best of moods due to the pain.  Sorry if the blog post is a tad depressing and boring but I'm just not all into much today.

Friday, September 9, 2011


I'm happy to say that Monday is a DONSA for my husband.  DONSA means a day of no scheduled activity.

This weekend I'll be thinking a lot about the friend I lost in 9/11.  I'll be thinking that I'm grateful that my family escaped the fate that many did not.  I'll be praying that no terrorist decides to take revenge on us for offing two of their leaders in such a short period of time.  Remember Osama bin Laden was taken out and a few weeks ago we took out the next on the food chain  too.

Personally I think that religion is a choice and one that shouldn't lead to violence.  I could go on for paragraphs here about my feeling on that particular subject but I won't.  I will say that I feel bad for the families of our citizens that have yet to gain closure.

On an intimate fertility note the endo pain started increasing again over the past few days, and cramping got worse last night and today its not any better.  I have to say that Endometriosis just sucks!  I was warned that even though I'm on hormones for suppression this could happen and to expect it.  Not much can be done about it.  The IVF cycle is full of different hormones and this is not going to be a joy ride on my reproductive organs.

So with the Endo pain I'm not sure just how much I'll be enjoying this weekend with my spouse.  We had made plans to escape town and head out a few hours north but I think that most likely we'll just be staying put unless the pain subsides enough.

I finally got around to making the cookies for the soldiers at the COF yesterday.  Tuesday and Wednesday were filled up so that I didn't even get the me time I had hoped for.  Finally yesterday I had a little break in my chores to get cookies made so I made the Oatmeal Scotchies.  Hopefully they like them.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

IVF And Army Complications

Well it seems as though that when it rains it pours.  Creating life is now a bit more difficult for J and I.

Here I thought I was the only one with the fertility issues, but now it seems that the morphology of his sperm is now borderline.  When did that happen?

So we are now adding into our procedure ICSI, Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, and the AH, Assisted Hatching.  This is going to up our cost of the IVF another $1400-1800.

Now for the biggest problem.  Getting the chance to keep my spouse home for the IVF and pregnancy, God I hope there is a pregnancy.

My doctors aren't being that cooperative.  I've now asked two of the folks at my REI to write a letter stating that in the event of pregnancy that they would recommend that my husband be allowed to stay on rear-D until the risk of loss is removed.  They won't do it.  Its not like we are asking him to stay home for the entire deployment.  Nor are we asking his brigade to go understaffed either.  We've explained to my doctors that they are currently overstaffed for my husband's slot and he would like to be considered for one of the rear-D slots that are open.

But no, REI can't help.  Now I have a referral to MFM, maternity fetal medicine.  I need to be evaluated for my high risk any way and maybe they could write a letter with a recommendation.  I hope.

I have to go over to see a mental health doctor too.  No I'm not crazy but I'm just getting myself prepared to deal with this deployment, a possible pregnancy, possible miscarriage, possible realizing that my fertile years are totally gone.  I need someone to talk to about the hormone roller coaster that will understand what I'm going through.  Maybe she will be able to write some sort of recommendation.

Next I have to see my cardiologist.  I'm far behind on those appointments.  I've missed two this year.  Maybe Dr.K. will be able to write something about my risk factor.

I still have to go see my PCM, primary care medicine, for a prescription renewal of my high blood pressure and asthma medicines.  Maybe Dr.G. will be able to write a recommendation.

I have my doubts.  I'm certainly not going to ask my optometrist to write a note.  I'm not blind yet even though my optic nerves are calcifying.  Yes, eventually I will go blind.

I just want one of my doctors to write a blasted note that the commander needs before he makes out the list of who he is planning on sending out for this deployment.  I'd like my husband to be left here.  We've made so many sacrifices already.  For three years we've had to put off trying to conceive because of training, hardship tour, deployment.  Now I'm just asking for this IVF cycle and pregnancy time if there is a pregnancy.  I'm not greedy.  I'd rather not bleed to death on the floor due to a miscarriage because no one is there to help me.

I'm all set otherwise.  I'll cope just like I always do.  I have my two grocery bags of hormone injections all stored away like they should be.  I have my huge plastic bag of needles and syringes next to the shelf stable medicines.  I'm good to go.  I know when and how to inject the medicines.  But yesterday we were told in the seminar that I'm not to give myself the daily progesterone injection but that my spouse has to give it to me.  So how the bloody hell am I to get that particular injection if he is deployed?

Who is going to write that letter?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Weight Flip Flop

This week of weight loss has been a real test of my endurance.  It seems as though this is the week that I'm bloating really easily.  I lost over a pound only to gain almost a pound back making my total weight lost for the week only 0.6 lb.  I'm cranky.

I have several things that could be the cause of this happening.  First off my schedule has been hectic.  Yesterday I didn't even get me time.  I had a last minute appointment with the chaplain sprung on me when my spouse came home for lunch.  Okay great I get ten minutes to change out of sweat pants and paint my face.  Not fun.

Secondly with the birth control part of the IVF meds I am not going to get a period for quite some time.  The packs are taken piggy back.  I read through the side effects and one of which really stood out was bloating due to increased sodium retention.  Great just what I need since I'm already prone to sodium bloat with my high blood pressure.  There is no way in Hades I can cut back on my sodium more since I'm already down to 1000 mg a day or less.  I guess I'll just have to deal with my weight see-sawing.

Third, I haven't had time for my regular exercise routine with my spouse being home.  I guess he is thinking that with him now being home from his  recent short deployment that I again need to cater to him.  Um, no.  Keeping the house clean is only easy if I get some cooperation.

My Fibromyalgia book states quite clearly, and I've read it to my husband several times; If you dirty it you clean it, If you take it out you put it back, If you make the mess you clean it up.  Those rules apply to all household members not just the housewife that doesn't work outside the home.  Nor should I be expected at this point in time to take care of anyone else but myself in my pursuit of trying to get pregnant and get healthy.  Someone needs a good swift kick in the pants of reality if he thinks I have nothing better to do than to cater to him.

Oh we've been "discussing" the issues of late.  I think we've got a good idea of where we need to work on them.  I don't like someone sabotaging my diet and exercise plan.  He's been home a week and that's exactly what he's done.

On a different note, today I have my IVF seminar.  My husband and I will learn what we are supposed to know about our IVF cycle and how to give me the injections the proper way.  Oh great does this mean we are going to experiment on me today?  Just what I need a sore butt, stomach and arms.  All I know is that we both have to stop by the pharmacy first before the seminar according to instructions.  Good thing I don't fear needles!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tuesday Monday

Hello Monday, err I mean Tuesday.  I'm all messed up after very few hours sleep, thank you cyst pain, and the four day weekend.  Now I just need to get the energy up to finish my tasks at hand.

Because its a Tuesday I would normally be finished with the bills by now but its my Monday and the banks were closed yesterday.  So today I still need to go over the bills for the week and see what's going on with  the financial institutions that we use.

I've got laundry to do.  I did one load yesterday, two on Sunday and I've still got the whites left for today.  I've got vacuuming to do that didn't get fully finished on Sunday.  Then of course there is the dinner I'm going to make.  Tonight's menu is a casserole, one of my favorites called No Chop Pastitsio.  I love that dish but it takes about 1.5 hours between prepping and baking to create and makes a mess of the kitchen.  Later tonight, due to two appointments tomorrow, I need to bake the cookies I make each week for the soldiers my husband works with.  Luckily they are a soft, chewy cookie I'm making and will keep well even if I don't make them the night before I deliver them to the office.  One extra day won't make a hill of beans in difference in this particular recipe I chose for this week's cookie.

Sometime today I need to fit some me time in so that I can fix my ragged cuticles.  I now have hang nails from doing too much water work with my hands.  Now if only I could learn to do the dishes with my feet I'd be all set.

I'd like to slip in some time to read this afternoon but I'm not sure just when that will happen if it does at all.  I'm kind of using up most of my me time this morning with the updating of my security software and doing this blog post.  Oh well, we all have sacrifices we must make and mine are really minor when compared to the rest of the world.

So its off I go to the salt mine, err I mean Kitchen and laundry room, to finish up my morning work before lunch time hits and my husband comes home for lunch.

Hope everyone has a good day.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Paradise Returns, Well Sort Of

Well we did make to the horseback riding.  That's me in the pink and orange stripe shirt.  My husband took the photo from his horse.

My horse, Cutie, fought me the entire ride.  She rode me through tree branches, briar bushes and any other sharp object she could find.  I'm used to neck reigning and she is the standard bit with a kick.  When we got back to the corral I was told that Cutie is great for anger management as everyone loves to scream at that stubborn horse.  Okay so it wasn't my fault the ride was terrible.  At one point I almost decided to dismount and just walk the trail instead.

My husband had a wonderful mount named Neo.  Neo is a dark chocolate and white paint horse.  Think of Little Joe's horse from the television show Bonanza.    His horse responded easily to his commands.  I was told that next time I go back to High Point Equestrian Center I should ask for an advanced riders horse that is used to neck reigning and not the beginner Cutie.  Funny though, we weren't given the choice of mounts to begin with but then again this is a fledgling company that has only been open for two months.  If Cutie is a beginner's horse I'd hate to see the advanced.  Maybe it is just her stubborn temperament and the other horses will be better but, I'll have to wait until IVF is done with before I go again.  In just a few weeks we start the shots.

I'm not really sore from the saddle unlike I was in July.  This time it was only an hour ride and only one butt cheek is a bit sore.  This time I did better considering how long its been since I've ridden on an almost regular basis.  No today I'm in pain for a different reason.

Yesterday morning my two endometriomas decided to give me quite a bit of pain.  I took acetaminophen in the morning and afternoon.  Come evening I went for the percocet.  Yes, the pain got that bad.  Its still bad today.  But what really irks me is the fact that I ended up gaining back 0.6 lbs in bloat from the cysts and the use of the percocet.  Now I'm really far behind in my weight loss for the week.

I had set a goal of 2.25-2.5 lbs for the week.  If I lose 2 pounds in the next two days I'll still be on target but I don't see that happening.  Since the percocet did nothing for the pain last night I'll not take it tonight.  Today I'm going to drink extra water to get the motility of my digestive tract moving again.  With any luck I'll lose that 0.6 I gained.  My pelvic region is firm and distended today.  Not a happy camper because of that.  My clothes don't want to fit so I'm wearing sweat pants.  Its amazing what a little bloat and pain can do to cause for a loss in confidence.

Hear me whine.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Trouble In Paradise

There are days I'd just like to call it quits and run away from home.  I've now had a weekend of these days.

I do not have a self-cleaning home.  Therefore, why does my husband think I spend all day doing nothing?

Its not that I don't appreciate his hard work and sacrifices but I would like to have mine acknowledged too.  Too often he thinks that me sitting at home means that I do nothing and I have all the free time in the world to play.  Tell me when does this happen?  From the moment I hit the boards in the morning to the minute I hit the pillow at night I'm busy doing something to make his life easier.

The next few months aren't going to make our relationship any easier if he doesn't realize that I too have value in this marriage.  The next few months are going to be full of preparing for his upcoming deployment and with me being on one hell of an emotional roller coaster with the hormone injections for IVF.

So with that said, when I ask him to help out with the chores around the house so that we can get going to go on our date I expect him to be willing.  Today we had planned on going horseback riding and have a timed appointment with the place to do so.  Right now I'm thinking its not going to happen.  I told him to go for a walk because I needed a few minutes to myself to get the laundry going, change the sheets on the bed, vacuum the floor, get dressed because I had just taken a shower and I had to empty the dishwasher.  Could he have helped out with any of this?  Yes he could have.  Did he try?  Sort of.  But he purposely screwed up the making of the bed  to the point he just about short sheeted it.  Come on now, seriously dude?  The Army taught you how to make a darn bed.

So yes, I'm pissed off.  Yes this is a rant.  Do I know where he went for a walk?  Nope.  No clue when he'll be back either.  The front door and garage door are open for him.  He has the spare key too.  So its not like he is locked out.  If he wants to act immature that is his problem but for now I need some time to figure out where this all went wrong.

Maybe it started with him refusing to share the bed with me last night.  Oh yes, I'm really dishing now.  I said I wouldn't go that far in my blog but there are times that I need to vent.  He decided he wanted to sleep in his recliner.  Every time he gets ready to deploy he really turns into one hell of a dick.

Its typical of the soldiers to put up this wall to protect themselves.  If they withdraw from the family then they won't have them so much on their mind when they are deployed.  I've been told this by the chaplain in family counseling.  The thing is, I'm tired of this crap.  I could understand a month or even two weeks before they leave but he still has a bit more than that before he leaves.  Really, from what I've seen around my neighborhood my husband's attitude is no worse than that of the rest of the soldiers that are leaving in the next few months.  Everyone is on edge.

This IVF couldn't come at a worse time but its our last chance.  There won't be any more after this with my age.  I explained to him last night that a child might be the only thing I have left of him.  He said he still likes to think of himself as a kid and as invincible.  I think about reality.  I think about the what if's.  I'm a planner.  I hope for the best and prepare for the worst.  Right now I'm not liking his attitude but in a few months I know I'll most likely be missing even that bad part of him.  Heck, I miss him right now and he's just gone for a walk to blow off some steam.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Four Day Weekend

I'm so happy to finally have a long weekend with my husband.  Maybe if we are lucky we'll get the chance to go horseback riding.

Our belated birthday celebration/date night, celebrated the day after he got home, was interrupted by a well meaning friend.  Since then things have been off kilter a bit with us.  Our date was going so well up until that particular point.  No means No in my book and folks need to understand that when I tell them no.  But this person was insistent.

I'm not going to mention the person's name but seriously they over stepped their bounds and it bugs me.  I've been wanting to talk to that person but I'm not sure what to say to them.  For now I guess, until I have something nice to say to them, I'll let it go.  The time J and I  had together got mucked up by the intrusion.  Its now lost.  Our time together is precious with the upcoming year which will most likely be spent apart.

I think I'll just have to take some time to reassess some friendships I have, their boundaries, and why I'm not being taken seriously when I say no.

So for now I'm really looking forward to this long weekend.  We've been needing this time together for a while.  Soon I'll be on the hormone injections and I can't say for sure what my mood will be like or what I'll be up to besides the possible temper tantrum, crying jag, or wallowing in self-pity that too many hormones can cause.

I'm still losing weight so maybe that will be my bright light in the darkness of my moods.  Maybe I can cling to the hope that I'll reduce my risk factor even a tad.  Right now I'd score a 26 for high risk pregnancy.  10 is the minimum I'd need to be considered a high risk pregnancy.  If I can just eliminate the overweight factor I can drop it by 5 points.

So much going on in my head today, my thoughts are scattered.  But yes, I'm truly looking forward to some quality time with the manflesh.