Saturday, January 31, 2009

An Update

3 blog posts in one night! Crazy huh?

I wanted to take a minute to update you guys on my doctor's appointment. First, though, I have to tell you that I have never felt so much support and love from family, friends and complete strangers than what I have seen the last few days. THANK YOU for your comments on the blog post, for your emails, your posts through facebook, your phone calls, cards, and just showing LOVE. God's love. I have felt it and it has made me feel so much better just knowing that it's not a secret. That we all have issues and it was ok to admit it in public. To be REAL. Most importantly, thanks for not treating me all delicate and fragile when I run into you in public. That's been the most meaningful. Yes, I look exactly the same and no, I am not suicidal. Just needing a little tune up! :)

I did go to the doctor and had bloodwork done. Everything is great and he agreed that my meds obviously have stopped working. He reassured me that this happens. He has put me on a new med effective IMMEDIATELY and the transition so far has been pretty good. Today I was out more than I have been in weeks. We had three basketball games, two birthday parties, and we worked around the house. It was hard at some points, but it was good for me to stay busy and not be in bed. I actually returned a few phone calls and really thinned down my email (please don't be mad if I haven't gotten back to you yet, I didn't realize how far behind I have fallen). I would be lying if I said I wasn't still worried about coming off the Paxil. I keep waiting for the weird feeling to set in that it is coming out of my system, but I just keep praying and staying busy. I do plan to see a therapist for two reasons 1. My buddy Laura is an awesome one and recommended I do this and 2. I don't want to have to be on these silly meds the rest of my life. I need to figure out the core of these issues and get them fixed. I'm sure it will make for an interesting blog post too!

So that's an update on me. I keep telling myself to take it a day at a time. I'm spending some great time in prayer and trying not to stress about the small stuff.

One last note, if you've read this and the last blog post and are concerned about your mental health, PLEASE do something about it. Don't live trapped. Reach out. I'm so glad I did.

Who doesn't love FREE!

RUN, don't walk, to this post here to find out how to get a 12 pack of these awesome snacks FREE! I just got mine and I am pretty excited about trying these out!

Ugg Boots-A little random I know...

I know this is a completely random blog post, sue me :)

I am rolling around the idea of getting some Ugg boots. Or boots period, although I can't do boots with a heel so that's why I thought maybe Ugg. I could spend hours googling them or I could just post it here and find out the scoop here.

Are the knock off Uggs as good as regular Uggs? How much do they retail for and have you found them anywhere super cheap? Do they run small, big, normal? I want a pair that will fit UNDER jeans, not over...what's your recommendation? Are they going to work for me since I have cankles (not a calf, not an ankle-just a straight shaft)

I am super cheap, so I can guarantee that if I buy them, I will keep them FOREVER! Are they still in style? Are they going out of style? Are they really comfortable? Like, could I stand in them all day at the consignment sale?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

A little more real

I have to start out by telling you that this post is very hard to write. I told someone the other day that I like to view my blog as a personal journal and sometimes I forget how many people read it. That is, until some random person walks up to me in Target and starts talking about the blog. So, I hope you will all understand how difficult it was for me to write this post. And yet I hope it helps someone all the same.

I struggle with depression. I like to think it is all my Granny's fault who was bi-polar most of her life. I never knew my Granny before she was "sick" as we called it. She was usually very good about taking her medicine, but I always knew from an early age what bi-polar was and what caused it; therefore, I always try to remain very concious about my mental health because I also know it can be passed down.

In Jan. of 2006, my Granny passed away. On top of this, we had sold our house and were living in an apartment because we couldn't find a house we liked to buy and we didn't want to settle. Prior to this point in my life, the only time I had ever struggled with depression was post partum in October of 1998 right after I had Anna. The first part of 2006 proved to be too much for me, so I ended up crying in my doctor's office where he gently reminded me that I wasn't crazy...I just needed some meds to make sure the chemicals in my brain didn't stay completely whacked out. He started me on Paxil 25 CR. I felt great. Yes, I struggled with the fact that I was taking medicine and I certainly didn't shout it from the rooftops. I think I mainly felt guilty that I didn't rely on God enough to fix me.

So, here I am three years later. Many times I have thought about coming off the medicine, but somewhere in the back of my mind I remembered what that dark period of time was like, and honestly, I have felt so good I didn't really think about it that much.

A few months ago, I should have noticed that I was becoming a little more withdrawn. Sleeping a little too much during the day and not being able to sleep at night. Worrying about things that I certainly can't control. Although I am not weepy, I am certainly not motivated. I find myself scared to death as I realize that I don't think those "happy" pills are working for me anymore. What if I am really screwed up in the head? If you are reading this and thinking, "I had no idea"...well, don't feel bad. I am really good at covering up things and trust me, depression is not usually a topic of choice for me. So, I finally spoke up at the beginning of the week. I am seeing a doctor today and although I am scared to death, I know I have to do something. Laying in bed is not working and the guilt I feel over having no motivation is going to eat me alive if I continue down the path I am on.

I am putting this out there to show you that yes, I do struggle. I am struggling right now. Will you pray for me? Also to tell you that if I haven't returned a phone call, haven't answered the phone, etc. please don't take it personally, I just can't right now. Don't worry, I'm not going to hurt myself or anything crazy like that, but I just feel weird talking about it and honestly, I have slept so much this week that there's a good chance that I was out when you called. I want to get better, I have faith that I will get better, but right now there are times where I feel like I am swimming with a 40 pound weight wrapped around my ankles.

Was this a depressing blog post or what?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Waiting in adoption

This week I have already been reminded of what waiting looks like in adoption. I have two different friends being shown for the same situation and I find myself not knowing what to pray for. One of them could potentially be a mommy again very soon and one of them (perhaps both) will not be chosen very soon. I have just been praying for peace for both of them, but it reminded me of my emotions of waiting the first time for Mary Elizabeth and I thought I would put some of that out there for others to see a glimpse of what it is like when you are waiting in domestic infant adoption.

I have birthed three beautiful children, but honestly the emotions that came along with waiting, being shown to birth parents, the not knowing for days and days...this was all something that was very new to me. And all along when you try to talk about it, you are constantly being told that God is in control, Don't worry!, "it will all work out!" Well, yes, I know these things too, but I needed someone to say waiting sucks!!

When we were called and told we were being shown, you almost can't help but feel that time suddenly slows WAY down and every time the phone rings, you're just sure that it's THE CALL. You wonder if you are bugging the social worker if you call, KNOW you are driving everyone else crazy if you don't. You pray for the birthfamily...wondering what they are looking for in an adoptive family. Wondering if they have had enough counseling, wondering if they have really been given options to parent. Sometimes you aren't told the sex of the baby, so you wonder about that.

Then, when we weren't picked the first few times, you begin to wonder why they didn't pick you. Was my profile horrible? Did I say something stupid in there that I should take out?

Or, let's say you go a while without being shown, you begin to question your caseworker, your agency, the planets, whatever. Why aren't they doing their job fast enough? Surely there are babies out there that are considered difficult to place and we are open to that, so why aren't they finding these babies!

Let's just say the emotions can seriously eat you alive. And then you hit your wall, hit your knees and tell God I just can't do this anymore. It's too hard. I know you told me to do this, but I give up. I've tried everything and nothing is working. And that day we were told about Mary Elizabeth. And two days later, I held my new daughter for the first time and I forgot what hell we had been through the prior 2 1/2 months.

I forgot so much that we are willing to do it again.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Another weight post

Yes, this is probably going to sound like a small rant.

My sister is doing Biggest Loser at her school. She is a P.E. teacher at a local elementary school. She emailed me this morning to tell me she has lost 2.5 pounds for the second week in a row, so she is up to 5 pounds lost. I am really excited for her!

I am really mad at myself. I really need to loose at least 15 pounds. Seriously. I am grossed out when naked...especially my thighs and belly. I remember after I had the twins that I would laugh that all my extra skin was like silly putty. It was just skin that I could laugh about. Now, all that loose skin is filled with fat. It's gross. AND YET I CAN'T GET MOTIVATED TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! Why? What is wrong with me? Am I depressed? Am I lazy? Why don't I eat better? Drink more water? Get my heart rate up?

So that's my rant for today. I have got to do something, especially before it's time to put on a lovely swimsuit this summer. You know what, who cares about swimsuits? I want to put on my jeans without sucking in and stretching after putting them on.

If you have felt the same way and done something about it, please leave me a comment and let me know what you did. What motivated you?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Mrs. Diana

I think most of the workers at Encores North read this blog, so I thought it would be appropriate to post this here. For those of you that have ever worked at an Encores North sale, you will probably remember Mrs. Diana Sensing. She has faithfully worked 3 shifts since the very beginning of the sale. She always worked to get her grandchildren clothing and was the sweetest lady.

She passed away yesterday at the early age of 63. Many of you will remember that she was diagnosed with cancer and even worked while so sick from the treatments. She just loved to be at the sale and we loved having her there. Visitation is this Wednesday night and I know Juju, Angie V. and I are planning on going. If anyone wishes to join us, please shoot me an email to

On a personal note, this is the second worker we have lost and it really sucks. I hate having the next sale and not seeing these women there. So to Beth and Mrs. Diana, I will always be thankful that the sale brought us together. You will be remembered and missed!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

Ugh. Honestly, I strongly dislike this time of year. It seems as though the kids have a project due every other day. We are swapping sinus crap around. It being cold outside always makes me feel depressed and dreary. Oh, and I did something crazy to my knee today. And by the way, I'm getting almost 100 emails a day about the sale. And my "M" button isn't working very well on my laptop. It's times like this that I feel like a person who can't swim in the middle of the ocean.

But I know that this will pass, and soon I'll be stressed about something else.

I probably won't be updating as much because the consignment sale is about a month away. Or maybe I'll be posting more to vent my stress. I know you guys are excited.

I did go to a scrapbooking retreat this past weekend. It was awesome. 55 hours of cropping, eating and cutting up with old and new friends. I got 78 pages done and for the first time in a long time, I actually feel like I could possibly get caught up with my books. I do a baby book for each of the kids (those are almost completely caught up), I do a school book for each of the kids (those are completely caught up) and then I do a yearly family album (I am current through May of 08 in those). I'm not sure what I love more...working on the albums and remembering all the good times OR watching the expressions on everyone's faces as they look back through the albums.

We still aren't homestudy updated yet. It's mainly our fault. We have drug our feet and we finally got our physicals done today. I've said it before, I'll say it again: if people had to do all the things to have bio children that we have to do to adopt, this world would look quite different. Today I had three things of blood taken out so I could be tested for HIV plus all the other levels that need to be checked (white blood counts, cholesterol, etc.). I got a TB skin test. I peed in a cup. You know let's just stop right there.

Is there really an easy way to pee in a cup that is the size of a pill bottle? I mean seriously. Guys, I recognize this might be somewhat easier for you, but let's face it...this is a daunting task for a woman. I always worry that I don't get enough pee in the cup...I mean why don't they tell you exactly how much pee you need to get in there. Sorry for this disgusting side bar, but ladies you know what I'm saying, peeing in a cup should be a class taught in junior high. It's not pretty.

So back to the physical, after the peeing, poking and getting on the scale, I was told we need to come back Saturday to get our results. Can't wait. BUT, we will be officially done with everything we need to do for our homestudy and hopefully, we will have some visits next week.

I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

And the winner of Laura's Heart is...

Lauren! Lauren, please shoot me an email at and I'll get this to you. THANKS to all who entered and please don't forget to check out Laura's site!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Weird Day

I just have to tell you. Today was a weird day.

I woke up with a headache, which has become quite normal this week. I don't know if it's a sinus headache because they aren't as intense as my normal migraine and yet they seem to be rebounding daily which is like a normal migraine. I decided to "be a like a bridge and get over it" and pushed through. You see, I'm going on a scrapbook retreat tomorrow with Kim, so I have about a million things to do today.

One of those things was to get our freakin' fingerprints done for our homestudy. We tried (unsuccessfully) to get this done last week but found out pretty quickly that our police department only does fingerprints for the FBI on Tuesday afternoons. Whatever. So, today we were off to the Sherriff's office in Gallatin. We got there only to find out that you have to go to the JAIL to get fingerprints done. You can't make this stuff up. So J and I headed to the JAIL to get these prints done. When we arrived, I kept looking around in shock and awe because a. I'm in a jail and b. I have a headache and didn't plan on being in a jail. The ladies that worked there were so sweet and when they came out to get us, they figured out that we didn't have the correct fingerprint cards. Well, of course we don't. Nothing about these fingerprints have been easy. So, we call the city police department to get the correct finger print cards, drive over there to pick them up and then drive back to JAIL. We get there and finally get them done only to find out that their printer is working so there's this lovely BLACK LINE through our fingerprints. Whatcha want to bet that the FBI won't take them?

So, after 90 minutes and going to jail twice, I finally head home. M.E. is fit to be tied and I am pretty exhausted too. That's when my friend Tracy called me to tell me that Target at Rivergate had marked a ton of their toys 75% off. Well, of course, Lady (our suburban) just drove herself to Target. Of course. Now, this is where I should stop and tell you that I am not a good shopper when I have a headache. I bought the same thing twice and went $28 over budget. The good news is that when I return the said toy, I will be $5 under budget. I ran into lots of friends at Target with my not so happy 17 month old (trust me, I'm not getting a mother of the year award anytime soon). I even ran into my saint of a mother in law who took my not so happy 17 month old so I could shop.

Then, I came home to three ill children getting off the bus. AND they closed school tomorrow for cold? Yes, seriously, those of you that don't live here, they seriously closed school for it being cold.

So that's my weird day. I'm hoping this silly headache stays away while I'm cropping. And that I never have to go to jail again....

P.S. Don't forget to leave a comment on the Laura's Heart post. I'm giving it away Sunday night and all you have to do is leave a comment after visiting Laura's site. Who doesn't love a free piece of beautiful art?

And the winner is....

The winner of Laura's custom flower piece is Brooke Knox! All the kids were arguing over who got to draw the winning name so I told Jonathan to do it. CONGRATS BROOKE!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Laura's Heart

I wanted to take a few minutes to tell you about my friend Laura, owner of Pitter Patter Art. I met Laura, well, forever ago. You see, I grew up with her brother Chris and Chris married my best friend, Kim, so Laura's been around for, a while. Laura is married to her wonderful hubby Josh and they have two kids. She contacted me a while ago about how her family felt called to adopt. After checking with agencies and lots of prayer, she and Josh decided to adopt from Ethiopia. She also decided to help raise funds, everything she sold off her site would go into their adoption fund. Now, here's the cool part. Laura has a HUGE heart. Since several of her friends (including us) are adopting, she decided to donate items for her friends to raffle off.

Our friends Tracy and Clay raffled off this piece that Laura made. At $10 per ticket, they raised $1500 for their adoption from Ethiopia. How cool is that!

I bought 5 in my name and one in each of the kids' names. And guess what? I won. It is now framed and in my powder room. It can be in your powder room too! Go to Laura's site and for $100 you can have one too. Trust me, it's gorgeous!

Then, Laura donated this piece you have seen me blogging about the last week. All proceeds from it go to our adoption fund. Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased by donating through our paypal button. We are drawing the winning ticket this Thursday so don't wait.

Now, here's the best part. Laura made this next AMAZING mixed media piece for our auction we had a few weeks ago. It is 11 x 13.

I had planned to raffle it off to raise more money for our adoption fund, BUT then it hit me. Laura has helped so's time to help her. So, here's what we are going to do. Starting this Thursday, Jan. 15, Laura is going to be doing a raffle for a stay in a chalet in Gatlinburg. On her site, you will see examples of all the wonderful artwork she creates. She makes beautiful canvas pictures, shirts, you name it...this chic is super created. So, starting right now through Sunday at 6pm, I am going to ask that you leave a comment and you will automatically be registered to win this gorgeous piece for free. All you have to do in your comment is leave your name and your favorite piece off Laura's site Can't wait to read your comments and more importantly, I can't wait for Laura and Josh's first raffle to be a huge success. Please feel free to put a link to this post so many people can see Laura's heart. Please only register one time per person and thanks Laura! YOU ROCK!

P.S. I will ship this piece so feel free to leave a comment even if you are overseas or in another state!

Sunday, January 11, 2009


That's what we have raised so far in our raffle. Don't get me wrong, I am thankful for every PENNY that people choose to donate, but a little sad for Laura that her beautiful piece hasn't raised more money.

Here it is again:

Right now you've got a 1 in 4 shot of winning (one person bought two tickets). We are drawing on the 15th, so click on that little paypal button to the right and buy you a ticket for $10. All money raised goes towards our next adoption. THANKS!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Costs of Adoption

I've had a few people ask, so I thought I would share "averages" for what adoption costs.

Adopting through the state AKA "foster to adopt"- FREE, birthparents typically have one year to prove themselves before parental rights are terminated

Adopting through an agency AKA "domestic infant adoption or DIA"-based on income in most cases. typically 15-20% of gross income. typically the base you will pay is $4K on up to $22K, although some agencies have set fees which can go upwards of $30K. This placement fee does not include costs of home study, travel costs, etc. associated with the adoption

Adopting internationally-typically $20-$40K

So far we have raised $9K. M.E.'s adoption was about $18K total. Hope that helps!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Our Beautiful Raffle Piece

We are so blessed to show you this beautiful piece of artwork that starting right now we are raffling off for our adoption fund.

Laura Kelly created this amazing piece and donated it to us to raffle off for our fund. Here are the details:
It is on a 16x20 canvas with a 20 1/2x24 1/2 frame.
It is a mixed media using paper, ink, thread, acrylic paint, charcoal and a medium matte glaze. Laura will add the child's name to the piece for whoever wins. She will paint it or ink it in the left hand corner following the curve of the flower can see the blank space I left for it.

Now, how do you win it? Well, tickets are $10 each and if you buy 5 tickets, you get a 6th one free. You can either pay for them through our paypal link to the right OR you can email me at to get our mailing address to mail a check. Feel free to post about this on your blogs, facebook, etc. We will draw the winner on January 15th at 6pm so be sure to buy your tickets!

I will blog more about this after the raffle ends, but please keep in mind that Laura and her family are adopting from Ethiopia. Any orders from her site go to help with costs for their adoption. Check out her beautiful work!