Tuesday, March 31, 2015

2015 Goals: Progress Report #1

Time for my first goals check-in! Let's see how I've been doing...

1. Take a CPR/First Aid course
2. Put $2,000 extra on the mortgage
3. Read 30 books I've read three so far, so not the best start. But I also have like 4 currently on the go.
4. Go on a canoe camping trip
5. Run my 3rd 5k
6. Take a class (such as pottery, dancing, etc) with Dan We have signed up for dance classes starting April 8th!
7. Finish bedroom makeover In progress
8. Fix flower gardens I've started making plans!
9. Build back patio
10. Read a Shakespeare book
11. Clean out car
12. Get wedding and engagement rings soldered together We have found a place who will do it, we just haven't done it yet.
13. Learn to knit mittens
14. Get a membership at a library Done just last week!
15. Practice piano once a week In progress, although definitely not happening weekly.

So basically, I'm not doing that great. I have quite a few that are "in progress" but have only been able to cross off one. I like to try and cross of 3-4 each quarter, so I really need to step up my game if I want to have these all completed by the end of the year! 

How is everyone else doing with their goals? I know a few of my readers made some yearly goals to work on.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Medicated Cycle #3 - Clomid + TI

We had an appointment with our fertility doctor last Wednesday and we have a new plan in place. Quick recap of what we have tried so far: cycle #1 we tried letrozole, ovidrel and timed intercourse, cycle #2 we tried letrozole, metformin, ovidrel and an IUI and then we took a month off in March. Which brings us to the newest plan.

Our doctor would like to move forward more aggressively and do another IUI cycle but use injectable drugs this time. He explained the risks involved and then went over the cost of everything. Since we have no insurance coverage, it would cost nearly $2,000 for the cycle. Which we can't exactly afford right now.

Since our doctor is super awesome, he went over some different options we could try first and we have decided to go with a pretty simple plan for this next cycle. We will be trying a different drug, since our doctor wasn't overly impressed with my response to the previous ones we've tried and we will be doing timed intercourse again instead of another IUI. Basically, this cycle is a calmer, cheaper one which we hope will work so that we won't have to pay so much for an injectable cycle!

So the plan is similar to what we did in January, just with different drugs. We will still have to go into Toronto for cycle monitoring but it won't be as intense as an IUI cycle. I will be taking baby aspirin and metformin daily, Clomid on days 3-7, ovidrel right before ovulation and then progesterone after ovulation.

We're feeling good with our decision and now just have to wait to see when we will put this plan into place. Ideally we would like to do it in April but with Easter and traveling involved, it might not be possible. Either way, we know how we're moving forward, we just have to decide on when the moving forward will happen!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Five Things Friday

I am so sorry things have been so quiet around here lately. Life just gets busy and I don't have time to post or I don't have anything to post about. I guess there is a season for everything, and this season is one where I don't have five blog posts up a week. I really need to accept that and move on. But it's hard, I feel like I'm failing at blogging and you all must be so disappointed with me. Which I know is all in my head. Ugh.

I thought I would share some random things today, since I kind of like the idea of Five Things Friday. Plus, it allows me to tell you about stuff going on in my life without having to write a whole post on them! Basically, I'm lazy.

1. We bought ourselves a dehydrator last week and I can't wait to start making fruit leathers and dried soups! I've been looking up recipes on Pinterest and getting very excited. We bought it mainly to make foods to take camping with us but I'm hoping to also put it to good use for other things as well. And the best part is, we got it for free using Canadian Tire Money! <--- it's basically a points system for those who don't know. The main thing you should focus on though, is that we didn't need to pay for it.

2. Our yard still has too much snow in it. I am so sick of winter and am so so ready for spring. I know I should suck it up, since PEI has it way worse, but I'm feeling whiny and annoyed. Melt snow melt!

3. My sister Cora sent me the most adorable (and super sweet) card a couple weeks back and I just love it so much. I still have it out on the bookshelf and it makes me smile every time I look at it. Isn't it the best?

4. My basket of books to read (and listen to, go audiobooks) is almost overflowing again. Not to mention, I have two more books on the go that aren't in the basket! I seriously need to buckle down and get reading, especially if I want to meet my goal of 30 books this year.

5. Here is me today. Can you tell I ran out of things to talk about? But seriously, I thought I would snap a picture of me since some changes are happening this weekend and I wanted a before picture. Don't worry, I'll fill you in on the secret next week sometime.

So there you have it, my random Friday post. How is everyone doing? Anyone have any exciting plans for the weekend? Or not so exciting plans? Any random things you want to share with us?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Good Bye Winter Beard

As some of you have noticed already, Dan made the decision to grow a beard this winter and he affectionately called it his "winter beard". He started growing it some time around Christmas and decided he would keep it until the first day of Spring.

Well, Friday was the the Spring equinox, so the beard came off! He, of course, kept his mustache and goatee because without it he looks like he's 17. And owning your own business while looking 17 isn't ideal.

Here is his beard in all its fluffy glory, right before the clippers came out.

We bought clippers specifically to take off this beard (and for future beard trimmings) so the removal process wasn't that time consuming. He had one side off in no time.

By this point I was getting excited for his face to return and I waited impatiently for the other side to be removed and the rest trimmed up nicely. He, of course, needed to play around a bit first.

I'm glad that he doesn't wear this look. Ever.

Soon enough though, he full beard was gone and the rest was trimmed and he was looking like his old self again. Isn't he handsome?

I'm happy to have his face back but also finding it a little hard to adjust to the lack of beard. I admit, I had gotten used to it. Good thing he's decided that the "winter beard" will be a yearly tradition!

Anyone else grow winter beards or have husbands who do? How do you feel about them?

Monday, March 16, 2015

A Much Needed Weekend Getaway

Well we did it, we took our much needed weekend getaway and I am here to tell the tale. It was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Seriously, it was the perfect weekend and just what we needed. It was relaxing, fun, adventurous and included the best food ever. What more can I ask for?

We arrived at The Westin Trillium House at Blue Mountain late Friday afternoon and were once again awed by its beauty. I just love the look of this hotel, it fits in so nicely with its surroundings.

After getting checked in, we made our way to our 4th floor suite. Once again, love the rooms in this place.

The first night we just settled in, made ourselves a nice chicken salad and curled up and watched TV. It was a wonderful way to end a Friday.

Saturday morning we enjoyed a breakfast of cereal with fresh blueberries and then took a walk around The Village and perused some shops. We didn't end up buying anything, although I totally had my eye on a $50 Lego set.

After our leisurely stroll through The Village, we headed back to our room for lunch and a movie. The room came with a DVD player so I brought The Proposal from home. It is such a funny movie, I laugh so hard every time I watch it. It was really nice having a kitchenette in our room so that we were able to make most of our meals there, saving money and making it easier for me to eat. For lunch we had pasta with sausage in it.

After our lunch and movie, we changed and headed out for our special activity of the weekend, indoor wall climbing! Dan has been wanting to do this for years but I've always chickened out since I'm afraid of heights. But I thought it would be a fun thing to do so I signed us up for lessons!

We went to Climbers Corner and the owner was super friendly and made us feel relaxed and confident. Pretty soon we were climbing walls!

We both had a ton of fun and really enjoyed ourselves. I climbed to the top 3 times (all on easier routes) and I was feeling pretty proud of myself. Dan tried a few harder ones and did pretty well. We are now totally hooked and have been researching rates and such at our local indoor climbing place. It was an awesome date idea, go me!

After our adventure at the climbing wall, we returned to our hotel to freshen up for our fancy dinner date. In the midst of my planning our getaway, I made sure to research restaurants in the hopes of finding one that I would be able to eat at. I sent a bunch of emails out to ones that looked like they had potential and I was pleasantly surprised to receive a phone call from the chef at one of them! He assured me that he would be able to cater to my allergies as long as we booked ahead of time so he had time to make up a menu for me. We were so impressed that we immediately reserved a table there!

Let me just say, The Huron Club totally outdid themselves. The atmosphere was really nice and all the staff were super friendly. Our waiter Cam was awesome and the chef Jesse made the best food ever! Dan and I shared a Crunchy Thai Salad for a starter, which Jesse had made a special dressing for me to eat, and we were both impressed at how good a bowl full of raw veggies could taste. We both got the hangar steaks for our mains and we couldn't believe how tender and melt-in-your-mouth the meat was. Seriously, I've never tasted such good steak before.

Dan's steak with mushrooms and sauce

My steak with veggies
For dessert, Dan ordered a black forest chocolate brownie off the menu and I got the special treatment with my very own custom made apple sorbet!

Even Cam (our waiter) was impressed with my menu and the special treatment I got, he even called me a princess.

Everything was incredibly good and we couldn't stop raving about it. The chef Jesse even came out at the end of the meal to ask how everything was. It felt like we were in the movies! It was basically the best date night ever and such a huge treat for me. It's been over 2 years since I have been able to eat out at a restaurant and eat amazingly tasty food. It meant so much to us that the chef was willing to cater to my food needs and make us feel special. The meal was a little pricey but worth every penny. If any of you are ever in Collingwood, look up The Huron Club and go eat there!

Sunday was a lazy day for us, since we just lounged about watching TV until check out time and then made our way slowly home. We drove around the area a bit, enjoying the views of Georgian Bay and finding huge houses built up on the mountain.

We even stopped at Lululemon and SAIL on the way home. What a perfect way to end the perfect weekend.

Now back to reality. Happy Monday everyone!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Little Banana Bites

Happy Friday everyone! Today's post will be short and sweet (no pun intended) because I have a big to do list to accomplish, but I really wanted to share these little banana bites with you.

They are so easy to make and the perfect little after dinner treat without feeling too much guilt. They are completed in a few simple steps which I will outline for you here today.

Step 1: Slice bananas and arrange on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper.

Step 2: Spread a small dollop of peanut butter (or other nut butter of choice) onto each banana round.

Step 3: Melt dark chocolate chips (or a chocolate bar) in the microwave until smooth. Carefully spoon chocolate onto each banana/peanut butter combo, trying to keep the mess to a minimum.

Step 4: Once all your banana rounds are covered in chocolatey goodness, throw the pan into the freezer for 30 minutes or so until the chocolate has hardened and the banana has frozen. Then enjoy these sweet little treats anytime you want!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

House Tour 2015

I've decided to make it a yearly tradition to film a house tour and share it with you on the blog. Even if most of my readers don't care, it's nice for me to have the record to look back on. If you want to see last year's video, check it out here.

The house hasn't changed much in a year but it's still fun to see what we have worked on. Excuse the shaky hand and the annoying beeping in the first video. I should have known better than to try and film while having the kitchen timer set.

The basement video seems to be a bit blurrier than the first one and I have no idea why. I filmed it right after the first one, but maybe my hands were shakier by this point? Oh well, you get the point.

So there you have it, our house as it looks in March 2015!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Matilda The Second

As most of you know, we have a small chicken coop out in the backyard that houses a variety of hens and two roosters. Back in the fall, we purchased some new hens and happily named them all while introducing them to the rest of the flock. There was one white chicken out of the batch and we lovingly named her Matilda The Second, since our first white chicken was just plain old Matilda.

She quickly grew and started faithfully laying us eggs. Considering that we only really have three hens that are laying right now, we appreciated Matilda The Second's egg supply.

A week ago, Dan went out to the coop to feed the hens and collect the eggs and when he returned, he had bad news. Matilda The Second had a significant amount of red blood on her backside. I immediately assumed she was dying and there was nothing we could do to save her. But since we really rather keep our hens alive and we had the possibility of saving her, I figured it wouldn't hurt to call my mom and hit up Google. Most of our chickens just die with no warning, so we felt we had a responsibility to try and heal Matilda The Second.

After perusing the internet, I came to the conclusion that she was suffering from a vent prolapse and the treatment for it wasn't that complicated. I won't go into detail about what a vent prolapse is because it's a little gross but if you want to read the blog post where I found my info to help her, click here.

First step was to clean her up, so we brought her inside and gave her a bath. We could tell that she wasn't feeling well and was gladly accepting our help because she didn't fuss at all during the whole bathing experience. I figured she would fight it and get us soaked, but she sat there calmly. I very bravely dealt with the vent prolapse (I should get some sort of small award for this) and then we dried her off with a nice pink towel.

She looked so small and sad in our bathroom.

Once she was dried off, we brought her into the basement and housed her in a nice little cardboard box. We had to keep her separate from the rest of the hens so that they wouldn't pick on her as she was healing and we had to keep her in a dark area with limited food for a week to prevent her from laying.

After the first 24 hours of just water, we started giving her limited food, which was mostly a mix of greens and some layer mash or cooked rice. Her vent didn't prolapse again and she was significantly improved within the first day. She was more active and most definitely fought her second bath.

It was kind of fun having a pet chicken for a week and I think she enjoyed it too. She has become very comfortable around us now and doesn't mind being picked up at all.

After five days of solitary confinement, we decided that she was healthy enough to head back out to her friends. She has been out there for a few days now and we have been monitoring her carefully, but so far everything still looks good.

We obviously don't know what the future holds for Matilda The Second but we are feeling pretty good about ourselves for saving her and nursing her back to health. We also now sort of love her best. Maybe we should take turns bringing in a different chicken each week for some bonding time? Okay, maybe not.

Any other chicken owners ever have to nurse any of their flock back to health?