Friday, January 28, 2011

The Mormon Bachelor

Anyone who knows me knows that I not only have a great family, but I also have great in-laws. Among these fabulous in-laws is my sis-in-law Jane, whom I adore. She is cute, funny, kind, smart, gutsy and knows what she wants (not to mention street savvy--she lives in NYC, for heaven's sake). Currently, she is competing in The Mormon Bachelor, similar to that of The Bachelor--only this is for eternity, not for two-Hollywood seconds (check out her entry video here: Plain Jane; it's darling). And let me tell you, Mormon Bachelor Rick, if you choose Jane, you'll be glad you did. And now here's where I need you, all ten of my readers: Jane's date is now up and running on the blog The Mormon Bachelor, so you need to watch it, comment on it and then like her on Facebook. The more likes she gets, the better her chances for a second date. And believe you me, Rick needs to take her out on a second date--for his sake. Okay, my friends. Start watching and start liking. Go Jane--we love you, soft lips!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Floating Embryo

*I just really felt I needed to share this, though it is something so personal and so private, I just felt like I needed it out there.

This last year has been hard. Even while typing that, I can't hardly believe it. Because even though it's been hard, it's also been wonderful. Hard, because we've undergone three IVF cycles (one frozen, two fresh) to no avail. Wonderful, because I am the mom to the funniest, most energetic, cutest, smartest (clearly I'm not biased) little boy and married to the kindest, most helpful, funniest man. And now I'm in the midst of another IVF cycle, one that hasn't been as successful as I've hoped. The last few cycles I haven't been producing very many eggs, but this one we got a decent amount (7)! However, for some reason, only one of those seven fertilized. Saturday, we transferred that lone embryo, hoping and praying that this one floating embryo can transform into something miraculous. And I do believe that miracles can happen. But more importantly, I know that no matter what, God loves me and that the right thing will happen for me and for my family. That's all I can do--trust in God.

I've had three scriptural heroes on the mind lately: Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego. When faced with the fiery furnace, for worshiping God and not the king's graven images, they stood their ground, refusing to worship anyone but God. They proclaimed that they knew God could save them from the fire's flames, but if not, they would still serve God. I love that--but if not. We can't always predict God's will for us, we can only put our faith in Him and trust that it will all work out. And as I face down my own fiery furnace--the terrible ten days of waiting for the pregnancy test, the progesterone shots with the "horse" needle (as Josh refers to it), the prospect that this might not work for me, that this might not ever work for me--I say that if God can save Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego from the fiery furnace, he can make this one floating embryo into a baby. I can also say, though, as Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, but if not. But if not, I will still worship God. But if not, I will still serve Him. But if not, my faith will not be shaken. And while this has been something that is so hard for me, it has also been something that has helped me to come to rely on my Savior so wholly and completely. And while I in no way can compare my trials to that of the handcart pulling pioneers, I share in their sentiment: "The price we paid to become acquainted with God was a privilege to pay." (quoted from a survivor of the Martin Handcart company). I have come to know God and I have felt his love for me as a tangible force. And though I long to have a baby, lots of babies, I wouldn't trade that love, that knowledge, for all the babies in the world.

Monday, January 3, 2011

This Christmas

This Christmas:

1. We packed our Christmas gear, hopped in the car (and then on a ferry boat) and headed on up to VT to spend Christmas with our favorite VT cousins.
2. We spent Christmas Eve day on the sledding hill, as per custom, enjoying the picturesque snowy Vermont. (Hooray for a white Christmas!)
The Mad-family sledding.
The VT Mad-family sledding.
3. We ate our traditional Christmas eve spread of 'lil smokies, salad, Ruffles & onion dip and French onion soup.
4. We acted out the Christmas story, with Will as Dada Joe (second year running); Beth as Mama Mary and Sam as the perfect sheep. Other positions were filled by friends of Sam and Beth's.

That there sheep was thirsty for some hot chocolate.
5. We got some new Christmas Eve jammies and had the obligatory Christmas Eve jammies photo.

6. Will woke up at the crack of dawn (surprise!) and couldn't hardly wait to, "Go see Santa Cwaus." (He'd been soooo excited to see Santa that when I went to tuck him in that night--he stirred in his sleep, rolled over and whispered, "Santa Cwaus comin' to town." It really was the sweetest thing ever). I hadn't realized he actually thought Santa Claus was going to be there on Christmas morning. After a little chat and some tears, Will calmed down enough to take the Christmas-morning-on-the-stairs shot:

But his calm didn't last for long: (yes, that is one biiiig cry)
7. Will got Big Mack, filled with friends of Snot Rod, from Santa Claus. And that cheered him up. He didn't even seem to notice the absence of Santa Claus.
Note: Today, Will turned to me and said, "Next time Santa Cwaus come to church with us." I'm thinking he thinks Santa is some distant relative who will, hopefully, one day come on over to our house and stay for a while. He also keeps asking me for random toys and tells me that, "Santa Cwaus will get 'em for me". Right.
And Charlie (a.k.a. Purple Thomas) in his stocking. (Well, in his pseudo-stocking. I forgot the stockings so Beth made him a toy-mat. She's good to have around in a pinch).
9. We had to stop the opening of presents on several occasions:
to play with our Santa presents (all three cousins playing with Sam's choo, choos),
to color with our new markers,
to watch an entire episode of Sam's new Thomas the Train "yow",
to eat breakfast,
and to put out an oven fire (from the bubbling butter of the cinnamon rolls. It was seriously smoky).
10. Baby James had his first Christmas.
11. Nate tried on all of his Christmas loot--and hey, it even all matches!
12. The kids had innumerable "jump-a-light-shows" act 3,700. (Don't even ask).

13. And we remembered why we celebrate Christmas: for the gift of our Savior--his life, birth, death and Resurrection--without which we'd have no reason to be merry at all.