Saturday, May 31, 2014

30 things to start doing for yourself

In my new found free time this summer, I've taken to the internet to find some good reads and just overall life advice. On Facebook the other day I came across this article called "30 things to start doing for yourself." The link to the article is here:!RVxbD You might have already seen it on my fb page but for those of you that are reading my blog and we aren't Facebook friends, check it out above!

I found it ironic that I stumbled across this article a Facebook friend posted, and it happened to come up on my newsfeed the same day that this next chapter of my life was starting. What better time to read about things to start doing to make me a happier person. Check out the article if you have a minute! I honestly read it three times and even shared the ideas with my husband because I agreed with so many of the tips!

Tip #17 was really applicable to me right now. It says "start looking for the silver lining in tough situations". This is exactly what I'm currently trying to do. I'm looking for the positives that will come out of our pregnancy struggles. Things like being a stronger person and more appreciative parent when the time does come. I believe more and more that things happen for a reason, and I love this advice of looking for the silver lining during difficult times.

While talking to my best friend from college the other night, she made a really good point to me. She said, "Leslie, you know so many things in your life have come really easy and quickly for you in the past, and maybe this experience is teaching you something." I thought about it for a second, and she was right. 

From the moment I was born, I had wonderful parents that set me up for success. Of course I worked hard along the way but that hardwork also led me to amazing results and immediate satisfaction. For example, I got a full scholarship to an out of state college which wasn't cheap by any means. I earned that through my dedication to volunteering and the 1,300 hours I volunteered as well as keeping my grades up in high school, however my hard work was rewarded. I was also a really successful tennis player in high school often making it into the news paper and having articles featured about myself. I was reminded of these the other day when I looking through my box of high school memories. Such great times! See below for some throwback Thursday pictures even though it's Saturday!

Volunteer newsletter!
Cool article about my story!
I changed high schools junior year which was really difficult. It was when my parents separated, and we moved out of my childhood home. It switched up my old tennis team and my new team and actually won titles with both teams which was neat! Also got to be on two number 1 teams which was cool!
Senior co captain! Can't believe this was all 10 years ago, and this year would be my 10 year high school reunion! Where does the time go??

Then I got into the college of my dreams. Next, I got a teaching job on my first try and literally two days after graduation.  I had the interview and a job offer one week later just a week after turning 22. Then I met my amazing husband. Then We bought a home, and I got a new position closer to home. When I thought back on my life, I realized that in all these situations, my dedication and high standards for myself led to my success and immediate results. 

For the first time in a while, I'm facing a situation where it's out of my control, and honestly I'm realizing it's a good thing that I'm being faced with a challenge and something I can't completely take into my own hands. This experience is teaching me to live in the moment more and appreciate where I am today. Today is a gift and is the only day we are certain that we have. I think I've always been guilty of thinking towards the future and planning out my hopes and dreams. I was always taught to set goals for myself and to never give up. I might have taken that too far though. First I wanted a job, then I wanted a husband, then I wanted a house, etc. I'll be happy once I get there right? Then once you get there you start wanting the next logical step. I think I've been focusing on those big life accomplishments too much while overlooking the suttle joys of everyday life. 

This experience this past year has made me realize that life is not always in our control. We simply only can control the way we handle the situation. Life certainly is unpredictable and the timeline I had all mapped out in my head just might not be going as planned,and I'm noticing that that's okay. As challenging as this year has been and as crazy as this sounds, I'm honestly thankful for it as well. Of course I've gone through difficult times before like the separation of my parents, changing high schools junior year, and moving to a new place for a job but overall, when I look back on my life I have been incredibly lucky and blessed. Thanks to my friend Jess for reminding me of that! So take a moment to think about all the positives in your life and what you do have even if it's something small and simple. It's helping me tremendously! I absolutely loved this article, and I will for sure be reading it again in the near future for some great reminders. Hope you all like it!

First day of this next chapter

Yesterday was my first official day of summer, and I must say it felt wonderful. I really wish all careers had a break to be honest! It's so nice to have time to do the things you've been wanting to do and being able to do them while not feeling exhausted. I thought I was going to sleep in super late, however, I'm still having a bit of a hard time sleeping as this is the hardest part of the month for me. I was just reading some articles dealing with infertility and pretty much every lady out there said that the day your cycle starts is the worst possible reminder that you were unsuccessful again. And that reminder doesn't go away for a few days either. But during these difficult few days, over the past year, I'm learning to bounce back quicker and not dwell on things that are out of my control. Luckily for me, I had planned a day of relaxation for my first day of summer, and it honestly couldn't have come at a more perfect time.

I had my second massage of four from my birthday gift which was wonderful! The massage therapist is also going through infertility so it is nice that we can relate and support each other. I also spoiled myself to a cleaning lady because let's be honest, life gets busy, and it can be hard to keep up on the cleaning! I mean I clean often but there is something to be said for a house that is entirely clean! If anyone in Atlanta needs one, she is amazing and would be glad to share her contact info! I used to think that cleaning ladies were for spoiled rich people and that isn't me but I recently read an article that actually changed my opinion and was what encouraged me to try it.

The article talks about how often times people spend their money on the big things and the necessities. Houses, cars, iPhones, clothes, bags, and so much more. It mentioned how there was a survey done and that all those high ticket items didn't really buy happiness. It was just a temporary pleasure and left people just wanting something else. The article suggested to spend your money in three key areas which are buying experiences, buying time, and investing in others. I had  never really thought about this before but it really made sense to me. By buying the cleaning lady, I was in turn buying time and a day with my family and friends instead of spending that day cleaning. The article encourages people to try skipping that Starbucks coffee, passing on the new purse, and saving that money so you can have things that you once thought you couldn't afford. A cleaning lady seems like a luxury and an unnecessary way to spend money, however, it buys you time that leads to happiness. I thought it was a great message and really helped me justify my choice to ask for help and pay for a service every once in a while that helps make my life more enjoyable and opens up free time that I otherwise wouldn't have had.

It also talks about buying experiences which I couldn't agree with more. When I look back at my life and my most wonderful memories, I immediately think of my study abroad experience, my wedding, my honeymoon, and basically any travel experience I've had over the years. Often times when money is tight for people, it's hard to think about spending money on something that isn't a necessity. Of course paying the bills has to come first and not everyone is fortunate enough to have lots of money to spend on traveling but I encourage you to think about where your money is going and if there is a way to save it so that you can buy those experiences. Traveling is a memory and a learning experience that will make you a more culturally rich, educated person and at the end of the day, you will remember that more than the high ticket item like that new TV that you want. This article just reminded me of why Jeremy and I decided to splurge and go to a Thailand this summer. Yes we could have saved that money and some people might think we are crazy for spending that money on traveling, however, we are buying memories and experiences that will be life changing and that we will never ever forget! If you're interested in seeing the rest of the article, here's the link!

The last part of the article talks about investing in others and spending your money to help other people. Love this idea too. It could be as simple as sending someone a $10 gift card because they did something nice for you. Or even just a $1 card from the dollar store. It's little gestures like that bring you happiness as well as the other person. That simple candle I received last week is another example of someone investing their money to do something thoughtful for me. That thoughtfulness went a long way for me so I've decided I'm going to try to starting giving back to those around me instead of just spending my money on myself and things that I want. I've always been big on donating to good causes too. In college, I did a 48 hour no sitting and no sleeping dance marathon for kids with cancer. Penn State runs the largest dance marathon in the world, and I was honored to be a part of that. Every year since, I have donated because I'm so passionate about finding a cure for cancer. I encourage you to find something you're passionate about and donate to that cause. Not only are you helping someone else but it will bring you happiness as well knowing that you are doing something great for someone else! 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

A day of very mixed emotions

My last day of work is here, and I can't believe it. I just have a few last items to pack in my classroom, a few more signatures needed on my checklist, and summer break is officially here. Driving away from school today is definitely going to be a crazy feeling. I don't think it will really hit me until the fall though. I won't be employed as a teacher anymore, and it's just a weird feeling. I've given my life to these students and every ounce of energy and enthusiasm I have for the past 6 years. I really will miss my students, my coworkers, and the beautiful school I work at. Today I reflect on the lifelong friendships that I have made at my current job, and I know that those will continue outside of school which makes me happy. Thank you to everyone that I worked with over the years. You all have made me a better teacher and person! I'll miss this team of first grade teachers too, and I'm so lucky to have worked with you all! Wishing you all a wonderful summer! 
Today also came with other news that I wasn't wanting. I had a hard time sleeping last night because not only was I thinking about my last day but also about taking my temperature in the morning and seeing what happened. For those of you unfamiliar with temperature charting, I thought I would share. See below and the explanation of how it works! 
Basically this neat little app, Fertlity friend,  graphs your temps. I input it every morning at the same time. As you can see, the temps are lower the first half of the month and then there is a rise at ovulation and your temp stays higher due to the hormones preparing for a pregnancy. For me, the goal is for my temperature to stay up which would indicate a pregnancy but unfortunately that didn't seem to be the case this morning. Seeing that drop is so hard and is an indicator that we will most likely be starting over again. For the past 31 days, I hoped maybe this would be it but the reality is that we need to move on to other options. Everyone has told me that every month that passes gets harder and harder. That couldn't be more accurate. I'm so glad that I have this data to keep me informed and for my doctor but at the same time this charting is a process, and it is difficult to see data that you wish you could change. 

Today is a day of mixed emotions. While I should be thrilled that summer is starting this afternoon, this put a little damper on that. It's hard not to think about what's next and what tests will be needed. It's stressful thinking about going to a specialist because that comes with a big price tag. But then I remind myself, we save money for things that are important to us, and we need to spend it on those things. I just wish insurance would help cover it but they don't. It amazes me that having a baby is essentially considered cosmetic. Maybe next year we can look into an infertility plan as many insurance providers are starting to have them but for now, it's all on us. 

But again I will start thinking of the positives. At least I won't have morning sickness during our trip which is now only 24 days away! Now that I'm finished with work I can really focus on finalizing our itinerary, our hotels, and such. Planning my trip, babysitting, and sorting through my teaching stuff will keep me busy the next few weeks. We also have a wedding coming up in PA with my college friends which will be fun! Cheers to a new chapter that starts today! 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Making progress!

Day one of post planning went well. I was super productive and tried to stay focused on my end of the year checklist as well as packing up my room. I'd say this is a lot of progress for just one day! See below! Just two more days and summer is officially here! I'm still a little overwhelmed by bringing all my teaching stuff home but at least I have the summer to sort through what to keep and what to donate. It's giving me a good reason to clean out my house too! It's hard to believe it's already been two years on May 30th since we closed on our first home. What a wonderful first place it's been! Buying a model home was definitely an awesome experience. All of this stuff will be needing to find a home in our place! Too bad we don't have a basement but at least we have some extra bedrooms, closets, and a garage! 
Starting to look more clean and ready for the next teacher!
Today I also got antsy and took an early result pregnancy test. Bad idea! It always seems like a good idea at the time until you get the result that you didn't want! It could still be too early so I'm not losing hope on this time just yet but I'm also staying realistic. One more week until I get to meet with my doctor and hopefully get my questions answered. Assuming we are starting over again, I'm looking forward to having a new plan and a specialist once we get back from our trip around 4th of July. That will also be the one year mark since we started trying. Gosh I can't believe it's been that long already. I really never thought I would be that person but here I am almost a year later. We have made progress though so I have to focus on those baby steps. I have a feeling some rest and relaxation this summer could go a long way. And fortunately I know I have the next year to focus on myself, my husband, my family, my friends, my health, and my happiness. 

I just read an article today that really reaffirmed my decision to take this next year off. It was an article about 5 regrets people have when they are old and looking back on their life. These were the 5 regrets in the article. 

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I didn't work so hard.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
I think that is actually pretty good advice. Sometimes we try so hard to please others that we aren't living the life that we truly want. I know I can be guilty of that. Happiness really is up to us and depends upon the way you perceive and view different situations. I also really love the friends one. I have always been one to keep in touch even despite the distance between my friends from high school and college. No matter how busy life gets don't forget those special people in your lives! Hope you all have a great four day week, and thanks again to all of you who continue to offer kind words, advice, and support! This blog truly has been a life changing experience for me, and I'm so glad that I decided to open up and share our story! 

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day weekend with my in laws

Jeremy and I headed to Tampa early Saturday morning. It was a pretty uneventful drive until we hit a big patch of traffic! Thankfully my iPhone and it's smartness with google maps allowed us to get off the highway and take a detour to avoid the standstill traffic! It said it would take 2.5 hours if we had stayed on the highway and once we got off, it adjusted to 1 hour and 15 minutes. What a difference! 

I'm so glad we have the amazing technology that we have today! I thought back to when I was a little girl using paper maps with a highlighted route suggested by a travel agent. Then I thought Map Quest was the best invention ever! That made driving in high school so much easier. I never imagined we would have technology that could tell us traffic patterns and adjust our route accordingly! So neat and I'm constantly amazed by the brilliant people that come up with this stuff! We also got a nice break from the highway and went down some beautiful country roads with rolling hills and cows in the distance. I love going on road trips and experiencing new places with my husband! 
We visited Jeremy's grandpa on Saturday night after dinner! He just got moved to rehab which is great! He is 91 now, and I'm so proud of what a fighter he is! It's also amazing seeing Jeremy's grandparents together. This August, they will celebrate 68 years of marriage! What a wonderful life they have had together, and I hope to follow in their footsteps and be married that long!
 It was great to be with his grandparents, Mom, sister, his brother, and his girlfriend.
We had some good food and some beach time too! It was definitely hot but it really hit me that summer is here! Just three days of work to wrap up, and summer will officially be here! Below are a few more family pictures from the weekend!
Siblings plus significant others at the dog friendly beach. Too bad Sydney and Sofie weren't there but last time they didn't enjoy the beach that much so we didn't bring them along this time!
A cruise ship happened to sail by just as we were taking pictures! It wasn't the clearest day but still nice to have our toes in the sand and got me excited for all our adventures next month! 

One hundred good wishes

When I came home from my last day of school on Friday, I found a package on my door step. I immediately thought, I wonder what new computer part or tech gadget Jeremy ordered online. Usually that's what I find when I get an unexpected package at the front door! I walked up to the box, picked it up, and soon found out it was addressed to me. Maybe it was late birthday present? I had no idea what it could be but the box was from Red Envelope.

When I opened the package, I found a red box neatly tied with a bow and a note. To my surprise, it was a gift from one of the families I babysat for 10 years ago in high school and college back in New Jersey. It was a candle called the "One Hundred Good Wishes" candle. What a sweet, thoughtful, kind gesture, and it seriously made my day! Such a cute little candle and the message and the words on the candle were so meaningful. What a great gift idea! I just might need to get it for one of my friends one day! It's amazing how happy this gift made me, and once again, I was reminded of all the amazing people in my life. It really is the little things in life that make it so great! 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Such an amazing day

What a day! I had so much fun with my students celebrating all our hardwork this year! We finished our yearbooks, and they came out so cute! Here are some pictures below! The things they write and say are just so sweet and touching! 
Pretty accurate! Hugs and flowers definitely make me happy. They know me well!
That is intended to say the balloons have
prizes inside. The last 10 days of school I do a countdown and each day we pop a balloon. Inside the balloon, I put surprises for each day. Anything from no homework, extra recess, cookie parties, etc. The kids just love it, and it's a great behavior management strategy for the last few days. They don't want to lose those balloons and surprises due to misbehaving! 
I love the part that says "I know cause my teacher show me." Too cute!
So glad they are already understanding the importance of college and career readiness! 
Just love their spelling of words! 
Apparently this little girl likes to wear dresses and high heels in first grade! 
And lastly, what they want to be in the future. Funny conversation that this police man and robber are having!
I will miss these kids so much! These memories will last forever though! 
Goodbye to another successful year of teaching! 6 years in the books! Waving goodbye to these smiling and also crying faces was hard. It's so awesome to see that the kids will miss school over the summer. This class cried more than any other class I've had. Once one started crying then another until at least 15 of them were bawling. They made me cry pretty quickly too! It was an emotional day for me all around! And for my students it wasn't just watery eyes, it was  tears dripping off their little faces. I'm so glad I've left such a lasting impression on these kids, and I will truly miss them. I wish them much happiness and success, and it was an honor to start their school experience! So glad I chose this profession even as challenging as it can be! Happy summer everyone!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

New chapter starts tomorrow

Wow, the last day of school is here. My head is all over place with emotions! Happiness, excitement, and sadness all at the same time. It really is bittersweet. This next chapter starts tomorrow! This week has been absolutely exhausting, and you can tell the kids definitely know that summer is here in less than 24 hours! Heres to hoping for a smooth last day as a homeroom teacher. I can already sense there will be tears. I haven't told my students that I won't be back next year, and they keep telling me they will visit me on their way to second grade next year! It's breaks my heart to tell them I won't be there. It always makes me sad waving goodbye to those little smiling faces that I will never teach again. But one thing I know is that I've made such a difference in each of their lives, and I feel lucky for that! 

Today was our work end of the year party. It was nice to spend sometime with my coworkers outside of work. Some of my coworkers have turned into lasting friendships, and I'm so glad I will still see many of them outside of the classroom. :)

Amid all the craziness of the last week of my school, in the quiet moments, I still find my mind wandering and wondering if I might be pregnant. It's so hard not to think about the possibility that it could have happened this time. Every little symptom that feels out of the ordinary, you just hope maybe it's a sign. The days feel like forever sometimes! The feeling reminds me of when I was waiting for college admission letters. Or it's like when I was waiting to find out if I had passed my teaching certification when I had a job offer on the line. Those events were life changing, and I find myself in a similar situation now. I can't help but hope for more life changing news soon!

I definitely feel like I've been way more emotional ever since I started taking Clomid to help. Many people I've talked who have taken it too have said similar things. I can just tell that my hormones are all over the place and that I don't have the patience that I usually have. I definitely feel like I am more sensitive and that I get irritated easily but I try to remind myself to just relax and enjoy each day. Hopefully it will all pass soon but I've heard pregnancy hormones are no joke either! 

I also have lots more decisions on my mind lately. I've had some babysitting offers that are close to full time and would be great money but at the same time, I'm not sure that's what I want. I think I need to leave my schedule a little more flexible so that I can go to my doctors appointments. My next treatment plan is up in the air so I feel like I need to leave my options open. It's tough to decide though when the offers are so appealing! Let's hope I figure out a good schedule soon! I'm leaning more towards babysitting part time, subbing part time, and volunteering but we will see! 

I also have a lot of decisions to make regarding our trip! We leave a month from today, and I have not nearly finalized our plans! I'm also a little concerned about the political unrest in Thailand but hopefully that will pass soon and won't affect our travel plans. Since I'm doing all the planning, it's a lot to research! I enjoy the planning, and I'm glad I will have time to focus on it after work gets out next Thursday! So many hotels to pick. They are all so beautiful that it's hard to choose! My attention is being pulled in a lot of directions right now but I know that's all about to change very very soon! Have a great holiday weekend everyone! I'm looking forward to starting my summer off with my in laws in sunny Florida this weekend!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Final week of school

It's my last Monday of having a full time job for at least the next year. I must say it is a very weird feeling! It's sad, exciting, and bittersweet all at the same time. I went to school this morning but ended up leaving early due to having no voice and coughing a lot! My body definitely didn't pick a good time to get a cold! I've never been one that likes to leave my class with a substitute especially the last week of school but it was the best choice. I didn't want to get my students sick!

As most of you know, the last week of school is a bit hectic. So many deadlines and last minute things to wrap up. Fortunately I've been able to do a bunch of work from home while I try to rest and feel better. It's hard to believe there are only 4 days left. This school year felt like it went quickly and slowly all at the same time. Honestly, I think it went slowly because I've been constantly waiting on news it seems!

Speaking of waiting, not only am I waiting for this cold to go away but also waiting to see if we were successful this month or not. Having a fever and a cold make the temperature charting I do just that much more complicated! I already began preparing my list of questions for my doctors appointment in early June. What's our next treatment option? Should I see a specialist? And the list goes on. I so wish I could go to that appointment in two weeks and have the doctor tell me I'm pregnant but that would make everything just too simple so I'm preparing for the other option and keeping my expectations realistic. 

Honestly I'm okay it doesn't happen this month because I would prefer not to have morning sickness on our trip to Asia but at the same time I would be thrilled if I was. I remember people telling me how they tried to plan their pregnancies around summer vacation from school and such. I wish I had that convience of planning when the right time was. The right time will be whenever it's meant to happen. It could be two weeks from now but it could also be a year or two from now. If only someone could tell me when!

Uncertainty about the future has never been my strength but this whole process has definitely taught me that life isn't always in our control and that you just have to be flexible and roll with it. I'm definitely learning some life long lessons recently that I know will just make me a stronger person in the future. 

I'm so thankful that through this blog, I have created a whole new support network. I can't thank you all enough for the kind words and encouragement. I've appreciated all the messages, the advice, and the stories you all have shared with me. I have learned so much from the experiences you have shared with me. The blog hit 3,000 views yesterday in just about two short weeks, and I feel so honored and loved that so many people are genuinely interested in our story. I will keep hoping for that happy ending and that I have lots more excitement and joy to share in the upcoming months. And even if there are some sad stories along the way too, I know I'll be able to get through it all because of the support of each and everyone of you! One thing I know for sure is that the travel part of this blog will be great! I can't wait to document and share all the new cultural experiences we will be having in just 5 short weeks! Okay time to rest up and get rid of this cold! Have a great week everyone!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Weekend updates!

My Mom gave me one of the best birthday gifts I could have asked. 4 one hour massages in a month! I get to go every week for a month! Since I've been trying to reduce my stress this was definitely a good way to start. I went for my first one today, and it was just wonderful! If you're looking for a massage place, I definitely recommend, Keisha at Opulent Wellness. It's in the Vinings area. Her website is, and you can sign up for email specials. :) Hopefully relaxing this weekend will help me fight this cold I have.

My Dad flies in today, and I am looking forward to spending some time with him in Atlanta with weekend. Next weekend, we are headed to Tampa to see Jeremy's grandparents. All of his siblings are going, and I believe his Mom too so it will be nice having the whole family together. Since my family is spread out across the country (my immediate family of 5 people is in 4 states), I really have learned to appreciate and enjoy the time we do have together! Now that I'm at the point in my life where I'm ready to be a Mom and have a family of my own, I have realized how important it is to spend time with your family. I just can't wait to expand that family and have little ones to bring along with us. 

As more and more people keep having babies and getting pregnant around me, I feel like it makes it harder and harder. I know I'm young and have plenty of time but it's still frustrating. It seems so easy for many couples, and I will admit I've started to get little jealous. I'm trying not to but it's just hard sometimes because you really can't get away from it. From birth/pregnancy announcements, to baby on board signs in cars, to baby ads on the internet, to maternity and baby sections in stores, it is virtually impossible to get away from it. I try to take my focus elsewhere but there are just so many reminders in the world around me.

Just this week, I got a "congratulations on your new baby" email from Shutterfly advertising discounted baby books. After being frustrated by it at first and wondering just why they thought I had had a baby, I got a second email apologizing. I had thought their marketing was just figuring out the websites I visit and advertising accordingly which kind of creeps me out! I think it's strange that the internet is able to change the advertising based on the websites you visit. Strange but cool at the same time. Anyway, their apology email said that the ad was intended for new parents who had recently purchased other baby products and that it was mistakenly sent to others. I appreciated the apology and them acknowledging the fact that babies can be a sensitive topic for many people. Things like that seem to keep happening lately, and it's hard when you want something so much, and you're doing everything you can yet it's completely out of your control. When things like that happen though, I just remind myself of all the other people that have it way worse than me and that usually makes me feel better!

The one other thing that has been driving me nuts lately is when people complain about being pregnant on social media or in public where others can hear and see. Obviously I don't know what it's like being pregnant but through my experiences with others, I can tell that it will be difficult, that I'm sure I will be sick, and that it will be a stressful process. I get that. I'm sure I will complain to Jeremy and my Mom and my close friends but one thing I know is that I will never complain in public or in an outlet where strangers or other people can hear me. You never know who might be standing next to you and what they have been through or might be going through.

People like me that are struggling to get pregnant would do just about anything to be in a pregnant persons situation. There are so many people out there going through miscarriages and suffering from infertility that want that pregnancy pain and sickness that they feel so badly. Through this process, I have learned that having a baby really is a miracle and something that should never be taken for granted. If I can ask one favor of all the pregnant people out there, please appreciate that pregnancy and that baby every single day. Many people out there will never get to experience that joy of being a mom and holding their own child. Parenting is an incredibly difficult job and of course people are going to complain about their kids. However, when times are tough and your kids are driving you crazy, just think about all the people that would love to be in your shoes. :) 

Some cool apps I recently discovered

For me, summer has always been a time for projects and all the things that I don't have time for during the school year. Since I'm moving my classroom back to my house, I needed to do some cleaning and donating of clothes and other miscellaneous stuff. I had to make space for all the teaching supplies and books that I've accumulated over the years.

Recently I found this app called Twice. It's a way you can earn money on your old clothes as long as they are in great condition. I had always thought about going to a consignment store and trying to earn some money but that seemed like a lot of work and then they might not even want what you bring. With Twice, they mail you a bag with prepaid postage, you fill the bag with up to about 25 items, and you just drop it off at a post office. They only take certain brands but it's a pretty lengthy list. Then you wait for an email offer that you can accept or reject. 

The other day I sorted through some clothes into two piles. One that I could ship to them that were in excellent condition and one that I would donate. I sent the bag off and got about a $40 offer for the items I sent. It came out to about $3 an item which might not seem like much but it's money I wasn't expecting so it's nice to have some easy extra cash just from cleaning my closet. So if you have some clothes that are really nice and on their brand list, I recommend it since it's so simple and convenient. If this might be something that interests you, let me know and I can send a little referral email where we can both earn extra money by referring each other. :)

Another cool app I came across recently is called Boxed. You can order supplies for your house in bulk, and it's cheaper. They give free shipping if you buy a bunch of stuff. I'm thinking about trying it out next time we need lots of household products. It's kind of like Costco but they ship it to you. I haven't tried it yet but I think I will sometime soon! Seems like a nice, easy option for buying all the necessities you need every month at a lower cost. I'm all about convience and saving money when I can! My Mom taught me how to do this well! 

Also, for any of my friends that might be starting to think about having kids, I absolutely love the fertility friend app. It's really helpful in charting your temperatures and helping you learn when is the best time to try. I've been using it for almost a year now, and I'm thankful not to have to use paper like my Mom's generation. The Ovuline app is also a good one for tracking data. 

And one more app that I just started using is called Ride. You simply download the app and then while you are in the car with your phone, it calculates the miles you drive. You earn points for the miles and the miles eventually earn you gift cards. It's a pretty slow process as you have to drive a lot of miles to earn gift cards but it's especially good if you're going on a road trip or if you drive a lot of miles to work. I haven't driven enough yet to earn a gift card but eventually I will and I didn't have to do anything for it but drive which most of us do anyway! 

The technology out there these days really amazes me. I know there are so many other cool apps out there that I don't know about yet so if you have any suggestions, please send them my way! 

Friday, May 16, 2014

Reflecting on this school year

It's field day at school, and I am home sick with a cold. Couldn't it have waited another week until school go out!? Oh well! It causes quite a problem when you are a teacher and you lose your voice. There was no way I could function and supervise field day activities without being able to talk well. After all, teachers talk literally all day long. Even when I don't have a cold, my voice gets tired by the end of the day. I'm a little bummed out that I missed the excitement of field day but I know it was the right choice. Sometimes I push myself too much but I knew relaxing and getting better before the last week of school was the best option.

Speaking of that, only 5 days left in this school year. I will admit that this school year was the most challenging of them all except for maybe my first year. The first year is always tough but this year I had expected to be my best year yet. I wasn't  in grad school, I didn't move, and I didn't have a wedding to plan. For the first time since I moved to Atlanta I felt settled, and it was a wonderful feeling and sense of accomplishment. My complete focus was on teaching this year plus it was my second year teaching first grade so I had the opportunity to make adjustments and perfect my lessons from last year. Changing grade levels is difficult because teaching is such a learning process, and it really gets better with time and the more familiar you are with the curriculum and the content that needs to be taught. 

This year I felt more confident than ever with my teaching. I had finally gotten to the point where I felt like an experienced teacher and someone who people could go to for advice and suggestions. I prefer that role over being the person that is being mentored and needing help. I also felt ready to take on extra roles at school such as being a mentor teacher and leading a committee. I've always like to taking on leadership roles, and I enjoy helping others but I think this year I took on too much. 

Over the course of this year, I realized that I have a very hard time saying no to people so I end up just adding and adding responsibilities to my plate until it ends up becoming overwhelming. I'm such a people pleaser, and I want to do everything I can to help others that sometimes I lose focus of myself. This is why I am so excited about this upcoming year. I will be able to focus on myself a little more as well as my family and friends. 

I've also learned this year that it's okay to ask for help, and that it's okay to say no from time to time if it's just too much. I think I used to believe it made me look weak if I asked for help but now I realized that you're better off having support of other people. Trying to do too much yourself just makes you feel stressed and overwhelmed and no one likes that feeling. Stress takes such a toll on our physical health and happiness. I also learned that no matter how perfect I try to be, there ultimately isn't a way to please everyone. I've always put pressure on myself, and I've always set such high expectations. I expect a lot of myself and want to give nothing but the best in every aspect of my life. Sometimes though I need to be reminded to stop, take a break, and enjoy the world around me. We live in such a fast paced technological world and sometimes I wish everything would slow down a little. I'm so fortunate to have the opportunity to do this next year.

Now that school is almost out and most of my deadlines have been met, I can start to focus more on finalizing our trip to Southeast Asia. I also need to figured out a babysitting schedule for the summer but that can wait a little while. Lately I've come up with a list of all the things I've been wanting to that I haven't really done since I graduated college. I want to volunteer again so if anyone in the Atlanta area has ideas where, please let me know. I used to help out at the Ronald McDonald house in Atlanta so maybe I'll try that again sometime soon. I also want to get into a better routine of working out and actually using that gym membership that I pay for each month. Any LA fitness members out there, let me know if you do classes or would want to work out together! 

Lastly, I really want to learn how to cook better. I have all these recipes pinned on Pinterest, and I haven't made nearly enough of them. I've always dreamed about having a husband and kids to cook for like my Mom did and now that I'm at that stage in my life, I might as well start now! If you have any amazing recipes/websites you'd like to share, please send them my way! I've made a few of the Publix recipes lately, and they are pretty simple yet delicious. Definitely recommend them to my friends in the south. And even if you aren't in the south near a Publix, they have tons of recipes on their website! Happy cooking and please wish me luck! I need it. :) 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

One more birthday post!

I really felt the birthday love and so many people made me feel very special today especially my husband, my parents, my brothers, my in laws, my friends, and my students. I absolutely loved reading all my Facebook wall postings and hearing from so many people that I don't talk with that often. It's a great way to reconnect with people better! Check out the pictures below of all the sweet things I received. 
Loved all the homemade cards from my students, and what girl doesn't love getting flowers? Oh and chic fil a breakfast from the sweet teacher that I mentor! So thoughtful! It's the little things in life.
More pretty flowers and a frame with all my student's signatures! 
Cute little spoon necklace made by the art teacher at my school. It gets passed around my school to staff members when it is their birthday. Such a cute idea! Check out vintage roux on etsy if you like it! She has all sorts of cool spoon necklaces with different sayings on them. The college themed ones make great gifts and are great for tailgating and game day! 
And probably the best gift of all was this note. As hectic as this year has been, notes like this make my job completely worth it! :) I nearly cried when I read the part that says, "we know she was a handful but you touched her little heart." Too sweet!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The similarities of online dating and trying to get pregnant

I'm laying here in bed and having a hard time falling asleep so why not make a post! Maybe that will make me tired. Anyway, while laying here thinking, I came upon the realization that online dating is oh so similar to trying to get pregnant. Here's why.

When I first started online dating, I went into each date thinking that this guy might be my husband. I set really high expectations and got my hopes up only to be let down time after time. I would go on an awesome date just to find out that the guy had already found someone he liked better. Then I had guys that were super into me but I just wasn't feeling the chemistry so to speak. It turned into a situation of constant hope that maybe today would be the day I would meet my future husband. I wanted it so much, and it just wasn't happening. It seemed like everyone around me was getting engaged and married. I quickly noticed that I needed to set my expectations lower and go into the dates just hoping for a good conversation. I couldn't expect that this guy was the guy for me. 

Instead, I changed my mentality and went into the date just hoping to learn something new and make a new friend. If it turned into something great, if not, I couldn't stay super upset and dwell on it. You can overanalyze why it didn't work out, but at the end of the day, there is a reason that it didn't. Now I understand why none of those guys worked out because it led me to Jeremy. I needed to bounce back and move on to the next person quicker. This strategy worked much better for me, and as you know, my persistence with online dating certainly paid off in the end. I still can't thank enough. They have given me more than I could have ever imagined, and I am so thankful for that.

That brings me to my transition into how online dating and trying to get pregnant are so similar. The first few months, probably even up to about the first 6-9 months, I went into it with high hopes and expectations. I kept thinking to myself, this just has to be the month that it all works out. What happened though each time was that I set my expectations so high that when I was disappointed, it was that much harder to get over. It was just in the past month or two that I've realized that I need to set my expectations a little lower and also assume that it won't happen this time around. If it does great, if not, moving onto the next option just like I did with online dating. I used to dwell on the fact that I had failed and would spend a few days feeling upset and frustrated. While it is still equally difficult if not more difficult each long month that goes by, I'm starting to learn to pick myself back up quicker and start over. When you care enough about something, you will keep trying until you reach a successful point. I might not know when I will reach that point but I'm going to keep trying to get there no matter what it intales. 

Then I also think about all of the people that have way worse problems than me and I remind myself how lucky I really am. No ones life is perfect. No matter how perfect their life might look on Facebook and Instagram, you never know what a person might be going through that they are hiding inside. Take me for example, most people wouldn't have known what I was going through because I always put a smile on my face and try to stay positive because I know that people don't like being around negative people. I will even admit to falling into that negativity trap sometimes, and I apologize for that! Sometimes you do just have to vent and let it all out. 

Next time you notice someone that is being grumpy or negative, maybe take a minute to dive in a little deeper and see if you can find out the reason and how you can help them to change their perception and remind them of the great things they do have. I know sometimes I need to remind myself of that and when I stop and think about all the positives in my life, they certainly out way the negatives. My Mom and Jeremy are wonderful about reminding me of all those great things. Find people in your life that focus on your successes and help you see the good in your life. Whether dealing with illness, family issues, financial issues, jobless, infertility, or a number of other things, I encourage you try and focus on the positive things that you do have. Life certainty isn't easy but dealing with the challenging times makes the great times that much more special! 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

First graders thoughts about getting old!

spent much of my day correcting papers, organizing data, and preparing to enter my grades. While I was cleaning, I stumbled upon a writing sample that my kids did in August 2013. Check out the samples below. They could only write one or two sentences when they came to my class. I distinctly remember asking them to write about their summer vacation and only a few could get out some words. 
As you can see, uppercase and lowercase letters were mixed up, words were spelled wrong, and there was a lack of capitalization and punctuation. Writing is one of the most difficult subjects to teach in my opinion. They really have to have a good understanding of reading and knowing what words are before they can put together a story. I realized that I needed to model writing to my students so that they can see what good writing looks like. We can't just expect that they've seen before, and they need to see the process over and over again.

As you can see below, the stories are getting longer, punctuation is starting to happen, and the stories are getting more interesting. It still amazes me the progress that these English Language learners make from August-May. I love looking back and reflecting on where they came from.

The other day I actually showed the students their writing samples from August and from today. After a few giggles about their old writing, I think they  realized how far they have come. We celebrated each other successes and talked about the future and how we can continue to improve our writing.

These kids are capable of so much and sometimes even more than we might think. The key is to make the learning fun and memorable for them. This year we really focused on setting goals for the future, and I feel confident that my students are ready for second grade! It's an amazing feeling knowing that you helped get the kids to this point!

Ever wondered what a six year old thinks about getting old? It's quite interesting! Aren't their drawings just adorable? I especially love the one of the little old lady marrying a little old man. Kids really do say the cutest things! 

Ever wondered what a six year old thinks about getting old? It's quite interesting! Aren't their drawings just adorable? I especially love the one of the little old lady marrying a little old man. Kids really do say the cutest things! 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Birthday and Mother's Day celebrations

May is full of fun and exciting plans! I had so much fun on Saturday celebrating my 28th birthday. I'm glad that Atlanta really feels like home now and that I've been able to make such a nice group of friends. I was thinking back to my first year here and how difficult it was knowing only my mom and one friend, Pat from college. I knew two people, started a new job, and was just a 22 years old. I remember feeling sad, questioning why I moved here, and contemplating moving back. Boy am I glad I stuck with it through that first challenging year! I really had no idea how amazing my life could be here, and I am so glad I gave it a chance. For those of you thinking about a change and moving to a new place, I highly recommend it! 

This weekend reminded me how much has changed in six years and how thankful I am to have met so many wonderful people along the way. Not only do I still have my high school and college friends but now I have a whole new network of people here. It certainly does take time to establish those friendships but as I get older I've really realized who are my true friends and am happy to have them in my life.

After the party on Saturday, we hosted both of our Moms for Mother's Day on Sunday! It was a busy weekend of hosting for sure! I really enjoyed combining our plans together and hosting both our Moms for dinner this year. We cooked a delicious Cajun shrimp pasta. We're so lucky to have both of our mothers just 15-20 minutes away. I really appreciate them being close especially after being away at college and studying abroad for so long. We are so fortunate that we get to see them often! Not to mention what awesome grandmothers they will be to our kids one day.

And on that kids note, here are some updates for those of you that have been curious! We are still in round three and just in the waiting period to see what happens this time around. I'm planning on making a doctors appointment for early June to revisit our plan of action and possibly look into other treatment options. I've gotten so much wonderful feedback and suggestions that I want to brainstorm with my doctor regarding our next plan. I'm starting to think about going to a reproductive endocrinologist but definitely want to wait until after our trip. Maybe a stress free two weeks traveling the world with my husband is all that I need to get my mind off of everything else. It's so soon, and I just can't wait! 

Also, for those of you that might have family or friends going through infertility, please pass my blog and contact info along! I would be glad to chat, listen, relate, and sympathize with anyone that might be interested. Sometimes just talking to someone who understands can help! At least it does for me. My goal is raise awareness and to help as many others through it as I can!

Finally, on another note, we are in the single digits with school days now. I've started to move out of my classroom little by little. Gosh I've accumulated a lot of teaching resources over the past six years! I have a huge project ahead of me but it's a good thing I like organizing! I have been taking a bucket full of stuff home each night in hopes of making the rest of the move smoother. I need to find space in my house for all this teaching stuff. What to keep and what to give away is the question! This next chapter is getting so close, and I couldn't be more excited!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Fun in first grade!

This year our school implemented STEM days. Basically it is a day to do hands on science experiments and dive in a little deeper into what it's like to be a scientist. This activity might just be one of my favorites all time. My students LOVED it!

I introduced the lesson with a modeled writing story about dinosaurs. We talked about different types of dinosaurs, how they are extinct, and how their bones are called fossils. Next, we pretended the cookie was a giant rock. People can't move rocks themselves so they had to dig around it. The other rule was that you had to uses tools to help you. It was really awesome to see how focused the kids were and how determined they were on accomplishing their mission. 

This is the type of learning that is remembered forever. These hands on, engaging, exciting tasks that have the kids smiling. I just loved this activity and highly recommend it! It combines science with writing and so much more! I hope that I will be that teacher that the kids talk about ten years from now, and that I've made a lasting impression on my students.

Weekend updates

Well that was a busy week at school but the weekend was here, and we had lots of fun plans including birthday festivities. I had my final teaching observation on Thursday, and it feels wonderful to be done with that! On Friday night we went out to Stoney River Steakhouse with Jeremy's boss, his wife, as well as the two other IT guys and their significant others. Jeremy's coworkers are just awesome, and I feel very fortune that Jeremy has found a company and a career that loves.

It's been amazing to see Jeremy discover his passion for networking over the past four years. When we first met in June of 2010, he was valet parking and still trying to figure out what he wanted to do. Like many college graduates, he had a great degree but still wasn't sure what he was really passionate about. He had a business degree in management from GA Tech. I could tell how brilliant he was, and that it was just a matter of time until the right company gave him a chance. Just about six weeks after we met, he landed his first job out of college, and he started getting IT experience.

Seeing him thrive and continue to grow in his career has been awesome for me. I love celebrating his successes with him and encouraging him to push himself further by getting certifications and enhancing his skills. His work amazes. Take this before and after picture for example. I think that's a pretty impressive transformation! If I saw that, I think I would run the other way but Jeremy takes on challenges like this, and I'm so proud of him and the work he does.
But anyway, back to dinner last night. We had some wonderful conversations, great food, and drinks. I must say I was quite excited to know that I was could have a drink. I've been trying to be cautious about drinking since there are many times when I don't know whether or not I'm pregnant. I usually play it on the safe side and don't drink during that two week wait. I will say that I throughly enjoyed a margarita and a kahlua and cream for dessert! It's the little things in life right? 

Tonight was just another reminder of how lucky I am to have a husband with a career that he loves and that he is surrounded by such fun, intelligent, and kind people each and everyday. I see so many people who are stressed at work (including myself many days), and it's refreshing to see him really enjoying his work and what he does. IT is such a growing field, and it's constantly changing which keeps it interesting! I must say, being married to an IT guy is quite awesome. Setting up cable and internet was never a strength of mine so I'm thankful he takes care of all that! But that's what marriage is all about. Our strengths and weaknesses really compliment each other, and it just makes
 life run smoothly. I'm so glad to be living this life together. We have so much to look forward to these next few months! 

Oh and thanks to all my friends that stopped by at my birthday gathering today. It was so great seeing everyone and catching up! Atlanta really feels like home now because of all of you, and I just love that!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Just breathe!

Every year I always seem to forget how busy the month of May is. So many things are going on but I'm trying to stay as calm and stress free as possible. Moving out of my classroom and consolidating six years of materials will be a huge project. Yikes! I'm kind of wishing our place had a basement now so that I would have extra space to store it all. While it seems like a daunting task, I know that it just a few short weeks all those deadlines will be met, my classroom will be ready for a new teacher, and I will be beginning the next exciting chapter of my life! I'm trying to focus on all the fun things this upcoming week including Mother's Day and my 28th birthday! 

Speaking of Mother's Day, when picking out a card for my Mom and my mother in law, I came across some Mom to be cards or Mom's first Mother's Day cards. I remember last year saying to my Mom how I hoped that this year maybe I would be getting one of those cards for myself. Unfortunately, this isn't the year for a mother's day but maybe it will be next year. I will certainly hope! 

And one more Mother's Day related topic! My class was interviewed on Tuesday by one of Atlanta's biggest radio stations, Star 94. Casey and Jimmy were sweet enough to stop by my classroom again this year! They are doing a feature about Mother's Day and wanted some feedback and candid thoughts from children. Let's just say that their responses were pretty funny! If you're in the Atlanta area, you just might hear my students on the radio tomorrow morning as well as Friday morning! 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Busy Monday!

I am loving that the sun is out, and it feels like summer in Georgia. This warm weather makes me so happy! I know many people aren't a fan of Monday but I actually don't mind them. I always feel refreshed after the weekend! I had such a great time face painting at our Spring Carnival at school on Friday night. I'm really just soaking in these last few weeks with my students! Summer is SO close!

On Saturday night, I babysat for the first time in over two years! I'd been babysitting since I was a teenager but on top of teaching it was too much so I took a break for a while. Recently, I found this wonderful family on, and I was reminded just how much I love babysitting. As you know, I'm obviously a fan of online dating so I figured, why not try some online babysitting applications? Can't hurt to try it out. Just like with online dating, you send lots of messages and then wait and hope to hear back. It can be frustrating when no one writes back for a little while. One day over spring break, I got the message from this sweet Mom so we arranged to meet up, and the rest is history. I'm really excited about helping out with her two boys this year. I'm loving that I still have the opportunity to teach children, and of course it's also good practice for raising a family.

Once again, the online thing just seems to be for me! Whether you're online dating, looking for jobs, or whatever the case may be, just keeping looking, networking, and never give up. You never know when that perfect person or position will come along! It's not always easy but it usually pays off in the end. At least, in my case it did! :)

Oh and one more cool thing! is doing this college scholarship for "match made" babies! Now we just need some kids so we can apply! So cool! Love this idea! Scroll down to the bottom of the blog to check out the preview video! It's kids talking about love, relationship, marriage, babies, etc! So cute!

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Finishing out my sixth year teaching

It's hard to believe that there are only 15 school days left. Three weeks left! May 23rd is going to be here before I know it. This time in the school year is incredibly busy and often stressful but this year is going to be different for me. Although it will be hectic, I want to enjoy every last minute with those sweet kids since I know that I won't have a homeroom class next year. The thought of not seeing a Mrs. Ciak sign outside a classroom door makes me sad. And the thought of not seeing those adorable smiling faces that say "Good morning Mrs. Ciak" everyday will be difficult but yet I still know I made the right decision for me right now. I'm going to make these last three weeks with my students the best, and I'm going to take in each and every sweet moment with them!

This week I will be finishing up my reading tests, and this is one of my favorite parts of teaching first grade. Seeing a child come to you reading a Level A book and leaving reading a Level H is just awesome. Having others above grade level is really neat too. This is one of the most rewarding parts of teaching. The growth and development in just one school year is amazing, and knowing I played a big part in their success which makes it even more special.

Writing is the other area that I just love teaching. I remember not liking teaching writing my first year because it is very difficult and requires a lot of patience and support. Now, I've learned to really love teaching writing and seeing the development. This year my kids seem to really understand that reading and writing go hand in hand. Just the other day I showed my students their writing samples from August 2013. Most of my students could only write a sentence or two and a few were not even writing yet. Then we compared and contrasted their writing from the beginning of the year and now. It is so cool seeing how they can now spell words, use spaces, use punctuation and capitalization etc. See below for some adorable writing samples. Moments like this are what make teaching such a unique profession. Getting to shape the lives of children is such a huge responsibility, and I love that about my job.

This year in addition to my academic teaching, I really focused on teaching my students manners and how to be good people. Being successful in life depends a lot of how well we can interact and communicate with other people. Preparing my students for their future was always important to me, and when I came across this article, I realized how many of my students were not demonstrating good manners.
Here is the article. It's from and called 25 Manners Every Kid Needs By Age 9.

This article was perfect! I began to gradually include these lessons into our daily routine, and I've been amazed with the difference. I notice my students holding the door for others, thanking me when I give them something, thanking the lunch ladies, and just being genuinely nice people. I think sometimes we assume that kids know what they are supposed to do and how they are supposed to behave. I realized that if I want them to exhibit those behaviors that I need to teach them myself. We can't assume they are getting it at home or from someone else. Check out the article! It's a great reminder of the simple things we can do everyday that make a difference to others.

So much support

Wow! Thank you to all my friends and old coworkers for sweet facebook messages and for sharing their stories. I had no idea I would get such an awesome response from posting this blog and opening up about my pregnancy struggles. I already feel less alone in this process, and I have a whole new network of people who I can chat with and relate to. Please keep the stories coming!

Speaking of this brings me to my next thought. So how do you talk to someone who is struggling with infertility if they open up to you? My advice would be to just listen and encourage them to keep trying different options. Let me start by saying, please do not tell them to "just stop trying and let it happen." For people like me with PCOS, that isn't really an option for us. It's either trying a treatment and hoping it works or just not ovulating at all or very infrequently. When you want a baby, the latter is the more frustrating option. Then people suggest, "stop the temperature charting." Or they comment, "you're thinking about it too much and trying too hard." Again, there is a fine line here. You either temperature chart each and everyday at the same time or you don't and then you have no idea if you ovulated or not. To me, the latter is more  frustrating. Science is cool enough to let me know that insider information so I might as well know right? Even if that means some extra time and effort, it is worth it.

Thankfully there are apps today which make the charting a lot easier than it was for my Mom's generation.  The charting, I should add, requires me to wake up at 6am every day of the week and even during my breaks from teaching. It is really important you take your resting temperature at the same time each day so since that is when I get up for work, that is also when I have to do it regardless of the day. But I'm completely committed to this regardless of the fact that I have to wake up early everyday and many times I struggle to fall back asleep. I just know that in the end when I hopefully get to hold my own baby that all this hard work will be completely worth it.

I had an old coworker tell me that after seven years of trying, once she held her baby in her arms that all those years of pain and frustration washed away. I can already tell that would be the case for me, and that one day if I get the opportunity to be a Mom, I know I will appreciate that child so much! I strongly believe that this is happening for a reason. I know for sure that it's making our marriage stronger, and I love seeing how amazingly my husband deals with stressful situations. His calmness and support helps me so much!

More posts soon, and I promise they won't be all sad stories or ones about babies! Lots of fun things coming up in the month of May including my birthday, my brother and brother in law's birthday, Mother's Day, a visit from my Dad, and the last day of school! And only 50 days until this blog turns into a travel blog where we share our adventures in South East Asia! Can't wait!

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