Monday, September 27, 2010

Coming Out Of The Closet

I am a lucky girl today. C is sitting right next to me helping me with this post. He also just showered, so he smells great!

I'm sure a lot of you have speculated about this post, and we've actually wanted to write it for a long time. We've weighed the pros and cons, and right now we need prayers more than privacy. We don't need your sympathy, though. Hope and prayers will do just fine. :)

We want a baby. We've wanted one for a long time. We have learned that God's plan doesn't always involve us getting what we want when we want it. It has been a long road to this point. And from the looks of things, it will probably be even longer.

After eighteen months of "trying" to start a family we felt it was time to see a doctor. One doctor referred us to another and another and another. Obviously, the goal of starting a family hasn't exactly gone as planned and the doctors found some problems. We are officially part of the 10% of couples who are diagnosed with infertility. So, about 3 weeks ago, we were referred over to the Reproductive Care Center. Today, we met with a specialist, Dr. Hatasaka, to discuss our options. We had been thinking an IUI [Artificial Insemination] would be all that we need. And it still might be, but the doctor wasn't nearly as confident as we hoped he would be.

We did receive some good news with the bad, though, because Dr. H. saw no reason why we wouldn't get pregnant by using In-Vitro Fertilization. That's just going to take some saving up on our part.

Where we stand now, is we're moving forward with an IUI, because we still have a chance with it and we can afford it. The Dr. said it would be unwise to jump straight to IVF and we agree. We'll see how this month goes, and hopefully have some exciting news to share with you soon!

We thought about the best way to explain what we "need" from our family and friends and stumbled across this article from therhouse that explains things much better than we ever could. So, if you're wondering what you can do, read on!

infertility is a strange thing. You can feel like you have totally dealt with it, moved on and not cried about it for ages and then someone says something or does something or doesn't do something and you want to curl into a ball and die.

this article is for people who love infertile people.

Infertility Etiquette
by Vita Alligood as posted on RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association
as always, to read the whole article, click on the title and you will be taken there. here are some of my favorite parts:

Chances are, you know someone who is struggling with infertility. More than five million people of childbearing age in the United States experience infertility. Yet, as a society, we are woefully uninformed about how to best provide emotional support for our loved ones during this painful time.

Infertility is, indeed, a very painful struggle. The pain is similar to the grief over losing a loved one, but it is unique because it is a recurring grief. When a loved one dies, he isn't coming back. There is no hope that he will come back from the dead. You must work through the stages of grief, accept that you will never see this person again, and move on with your life.

The grief of infertility is not so cut and dry. Infertile people grieve the loss of the baby that they may never know. They grieve the loss of that baby who would have had mommy's nose and daddy's eyes. But, each month, there is the hope that maybe that baby will be conceived after all. No matter how hard they try to prepare themselves for bad news, they still hope that this month will be different. Then, the bad news comes again, and the grief washes over the infertile couple anew. This process happens month after month, year after year. It is like having a deep cut that keeps getting opened right when it starts to heal.

Don't Tell Them to Relax

Everyone knows someone who had trouble conceiving but then finally became pregnant once she "relaxed." Couples who are able to conceive after a few months of "relaxing" are not infertile. By definition, a couple is not diagnosed as "infertile" until they have tried unsuccessfully to become pregnant for a full year.

Infertility is a diagnosable medical problem that must be treated by a doctor, and even with treatment, many couples will NEVER successfully conceive a child. Relaxation itself does not cure medical infertility.

Don't Minimize the Problem

Failure to conceive a baby is a very painful journey. Infertile couples are surrounded by families with children. These couples watch their friends give birth to two or three children, and they watch those children grow while the couple goes home to the silence of an empty house. These couples see all of the joy that a child brings into someone's life, and they feel the emptiness of not being able to experience the same joy.

Comments like, "Just enjoy being able to sleep late . . . .travel . . etc.," do not offer comfort. Instead, these comments make infertile people feel like you are minimizing their pain. You wouldn't tell somebody whose parent just died to be thankful that he no longer has to buy Father's Day or Mother's Day cards. Losing that one obligation doesn't even begin to compensate for the incredible loss of losing a parent. In the same vein, being able to sleep late or travel does not provide comfort to somebody who desperately wants a child.

(this is mrs. r. i have to insert something here. have you seen those lists of lessons to follow before you enter parenthood? they say things like "smear peanut butter onto the sofa and some jam onto the curtains" and "make a recording of fran drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly and play the tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years." then at the end it says, "okay, now you're ready!!" so offensive. and yet is included in my adoption education manual for adoptive couples. don't say those things to me! hello! anyway...)

Don't Say There Are Worse Things That Could Happen

Along the same lines, don't tell your friend that there are worse things that she could be going through. Who is the final authority on what is the "worst" thing that could happen to someone?

Different people react to different life experiences in different ways. To someone who has trained his whole life for the Olympics, the "worst" thing might be experiencing an injury the week before the event. And, to a woman whose sole goal in life has been to love and nurture a child, infertility may indeed be the "worst" thing that could happen.

People wouldn't dream of telling someone whose parent just died, "It could be worse: both of your parents could be dead." Such a comment would be considered cruel rather than comforting.

Don't Say They Aren't Meant to Be Parents

One of the cruelest things anyone ever said to me is, "Maybe God doesn't intend for you to be a mother." How incredibly insensitive to imply that I would be such a bad mother that God felt the need to divinely sterilize me. If God were in the business of divinely sterilizing women, don't you think he would prevent the pregnancies that end in abortions? Or wouldn't he sterilize the women who wind up neglecting and abusing their children? Even if you aren't religious, the "maybe it's not meant to be" comments are not comforting. Infertility is a medical condition, not a punishment from God or Mother Nature.

Don't Play Doctor

Infertility is a complicated problem to diagnose, and reading an article or book on infertility will not make you an "expert" on the subject.

You may feel like you are being helpful by reading up on infertility, and there is nothing wrong with learning more about the subject.

The problem comes when you try to "play doctor" with your friends. They already have a doctor with years of experience in diagnosing and treating the problem. They need to work with and trust their doctor to treat the problem. You only complicate the issue when you throw out other ideas that you have read about.

Don't Be Crude

It is appalling that I even have to include this paragraph, but some of you need to hear this-Don't make crude jokes about your friend's vulnerable position. Crude comments like "I'll donate the sperm" or "Make sure the doctor uses your sperm for the insemination" are not funny, and they only irritate your friends.

Don't Complain About Your Pregnancy

This message is for pregnant women-Just being around you is painful for your infertile friends. Seeing your belly grow is a constant reminder of what your infertile friend cannot have. Unless an infertile women plans to spend her life in a cave, she has to find a way to interact with pregnant women. However, there are things you can do as her friend to make it easier.

The number one rule is DON'T COMPLAIN ABOUT YOUR PREGNANCY. I understand from my friends that, when you are pregnant, your hormones are going crazy and you experience a lot of discomfort, such as queasiness, stretch marks, and fatigue. You have every right to vent about the discomforts to any one else in your life, but don't put your infertile friend in the position of comforting you.

Your infertile friend would give anything to experience the discomforts you are enduring because those discomforts come from a baby growing inside of you. When I heard a pregnant woman complain about morning sickness, I would think, "I'd gladly throw up for nine straight months if it meant I could have a baby." When a pregnant woman would complain about her weight gain, I would think, "I would cut off my arm if I could be in your shoes."

I managed to go to baby showers and hospitals to welcome my friends' new babies, but it was hard. Without exception, it was hard. Stay sensitive to your infertile friend's emotions, and give her the leeway that she needs to be happy for you while she cries for herself. If she can't bring herself to hold your new baby, give her time. She isn't rejecting you or your new baby; she is just trying to work her way through her pain to show sincere joy for you. The fact that she is willing to endure such pain in order to celebrate your new baby with you speaks volumes about how much your friendship means to her.

Don't Treat Them Like They Are Ignorant

For some reason, some people seem to think that infertility causes a person to become unrealistic about the responsibilities of parenthood. I don't follow the logic, but several people told me that I wouldn't ache for a baby so much if I appreciated how much responsibility was involved in parenting.

Let's face it-no one can fully appreciate the responsibilities involved in parenting until they are, themselves, parents. That is true whether you successfully conceived after one month or after 10 years. The length of time you spend waiting for that baby does not factor in to your appreciation of responsibility. If anything, people who have been trying to become pregnant longer have had more time to think about those responsibilities. They have also probably been around lots of babies as their friends started their families.

Perhaps part of what fuels this perception is that infertile couples have a longer time to "dream" about what being a parent will be like. Like every other couple, we have our fantasies-my child will sleep through the night, would never have a tantrum in public, and will always eat his vegetables. Let us have our fantasies. Those fantasies are some of the few parent-to-be perks that we have-let us have them. You can give us your knowing looks when we discover the truth later.

Don't Gossip About Your Friend's Condition

Infertility treatments are very private and embarrassing, which is why many couples choose to undergo these treatments in secret.

Infertility is something that should be kept as private as your friend wants to keep it. Respect your friend's privacy, and don't share any information that your friend hasn't authorized.

Don't Push Adoption (Yet)

Adoption is a wonderful way for infertile people to become parents.

However, the couple needs to work through many issues before they will be ready to make an adoption decision. Before they can make the decision to love a "stranger's baby," they must first grieve the loss of that baby with Daddy's eyes and Mommy's nose.

You do, indeed, need to grieve this loss before you are ready to start the adoption process. The adoption process is very long and expensive, and it is not an easy road. So, the couple needs to be very sure that they can let go of the hope of a biological child and that they can love an adopted baby. This takes time, and some couples are never able to reach this point. If your friend cannot love a baby that isn't her "own," then adoption isn't the right decision for her, and it is certainly not what is best for the baby.

Mentioning adoption in passing can be a comfort to some couples. However, "pushing" the issue can frustrate your friend. So, mention the idea in passing if it seems appropriate, and then drop it. When your friend is ready to talk about adoption, she will raise the issue herself.

* * *

So, what can you say to your infertile friends? Unless you say "I am giving you this baby," there is nothing you can say that will erase their pain. So, take that pressure off of yourself. It isn't your job to erase their pain, but there is a lot you can do to lesson the load. Here are a few ideas.

Let Them Know That You Care

Remember Them on Mother's and Father's Day

Support Their Decision to Stop Treatments

Friday, September 24, 2010

Scrapbooking Update

So, I am no longer designing scrapbook supplies. It was taking too much away from my hobby time and I don't like it when one of my hobbies becomes stressful. So, to remain in balance [are you impressed mom?] I'm now just scrapping to my heart's content. :) Perhaps we'll get "caught up" after all!

Here are some of the latest and greatest!

My Grandmother's Pearls

I made this page for our wedding album [yes, I'm still working on it almost 2 years later...pathetic? yah.] but I'm thinking this is going to be one page that is framed in our home somewhere. Those pearls are such a symbol of our family legacy of love that it would be a shame to hide it between the covers of a book.

For those of your who are also a part of this legacy, I would be happy to swap a picture out so you have your own copy. Let me know!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Big Apple

Remember how I lost my job? It's actually been a really good thing. I found a new job at Mikarose and we have enough to get by for now. The sudden drop in our income, though, has caused us to be a little more creative with our dates. Last weekend, I decided to take C to New York City. He's talked a lot about how much he would love to visit the Big Apple, and since we won't be able to afford the real thing any time soon, this was the perfect way to spend a Saturday night.

C was going to be at school all day long studying and I told him I would get him all the information he'd need through e-mail. This is what he received:

I just did a quick photoshop job of an existing boarding pass. But, note to self, make it a little more obvious that it's fake next time! I successfully stressed C out of his mind. He was looking at the boarding time and figuring out when he needed to leave Provo in order to be in SLC on time. Not to mention my phone was dead. Basically, I was trying to tell him that I would pick him up at 6:23 at the WSC turnaround. Message failed. He was waiting for me for a n hour because it says "please be at the boarding gate well ahead of departure time..." darn. after our "rocky departure," I took him to a real life New York Pizzeria!

Homemade pizza, salad and breadsticks, with cherry limeade to drink. It was yummy! The card on the table said "dessert." Inside was a note asking him if he'd like to go biking through "central park" and to meet me out back. I had borrowed his cousin's bike and bikerack so we could haul the bikes and take a ride up the canyon. I haven't been on a bike in about 5 years and it was a blast! We're definitely going to have to look into getting me a bike. We were outside, exercising, and talking. It was a whole new world for me!We rode up to a park along the river where his cousin Eric was having a birthday party with homemade cobbler and ice cream. C has basically left me on the no-sugar front, so he enjoyed a big bowl of it before we headed back.

We started and ended the bike ride at the Shops at Riverwoods mall. When we got back, in true New York City fashion, there was a dance party going on. We took a walk around, observed the "nightlife" and headed back to the car, where I surprised C with these:

We cuddled up on the couch and watched the Phantom of the Opera. I was sort of worried C would think this date idea was kind of childish or dumb, but we both had the absolute best time! We'll see where our next trip takes us. We'll definitely be doing this again!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tuesdays with Morrie

C bought me the book Tuesdays with Morrie for Mother's Day. I had heard so many good things about it, and it definitely did not disappoint! I had finished it within a week and was already begging C to read it too.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago, BYU was putting on the play Tuesdays with Morrie. [Oh, how I LOVE the talented world we live in!] C snagged us some cheap dress rehearsal tickets and we caught a mid-week show. To say it was incredible would be an understatement. There were only 2 actors, but it didn't lack humor, intensity, or emotion and had the entire audience engaged the entire time. I was extremely impressed with the delivery and found myself completely immersed in the world they created. Oh, yeah, and they didn't have a set. It was two actors and a bunch of props. That's it. But WOW. I wish it were still playing so I could tell all of you to go see it, because it's worth every penny! But, I guess I'll have to settle for you just reading the book. [If you haven't read it, please go get it. Like now. Visit your local library! :)]

The show started at 7, and C had class until 6:30, so I decided to pack a picnic. We finally got to use this baby! I made his favorite, Poppyseed Chicken, and surprised him. [yes, I CAN be put together, and on time, every now and again!]

Midweek dates are fun!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

McGuire Family Reunion

Not to be outdone, my dad's family had a reunion over Labor Day weekend. We stayed in a little town called Junction, UT in an old courthouse. When we drove into town, I seriously didn't know where we were. It literally does not have a traffic light. I quickly ate my words, though, when we walked inside the courthouse. It was awesome! Huge kitchen, tons of bedrooms, a library [where we stayed], a massive game room with air hockey, bumper pool, and foosball, etc. Outside had tons of grass, a fire-pit, a hammock, and plenty of seating.

The first night, we sat around recording stories to put in my grandparents' life history. It was so fun to see my Dad and his siblings recount stories from their childhood and laugh like crazy, or remember what amazing people their parents were.

The next day was pretty much free to do whatever we wanted. My parents, C & Me, and my brother Rick decided to go hike to a waterfall near Escalante [or so we thought]. I was supposed to be the navigator and managed to add a full half hour onto our drive. [sorry!] I really can read a map. That map was just slightly confusing.

Mom's "laughie-cry" face even made an appearance. [This pic is for my sisters. :) You're welcome, in advance.] My parents were exhausted from being on Lake Powell for the past few days [rough life, eh?] so they let C drive while they tried to remain mature and secure in the back. Mom was really ready to be out of the car. :)

However, the drive and hike were totally worth it when we came around the corner and saw this:

The water was freezing cold. I got in to about my mid calf and decided that was definitely far enough. C and Rick scaled the cliff and slid all the way down the slippery rocks.

Before we left, however, Rick decided to man up and actually get all the way in the waterfall. Crazy Kid.

It really was a great hike!

We got back to the courthouse just in time for dinner and an all-family kickball game. Dad got out trying to stretch a triple into a homerun and even dove for the plate, but missed it by *that much*. I still think his team ended up beating mine. :)

We ended the reunion with a rousing game of Sedarahc. [Charades backwards.] It's this fabulous game where your entire team acts out the word and one person guesses. I must say, Dad's rendition of "electric chair" and Uncle James' "escalator" were by far my favorites. Aunt Kelly's "circus" was also quite entertaining. :)

That last picture would be Uncle James doing his incredibly convincing "escalator" while his son Ethan grabs his head in frustration. I don't think Ethan ever got "escalator." But look at all those smiling faces!

Thanks for a great reunion! Kelly, you seriously did an amazing job planning everything! Can't wait til the next one!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

At the Drive In

C totally spoiled me and took me to see Toy Story 3 at the drive-in in West Valley. We decided to go the "The Mayan" restaurant in Sandy before the show. I was totally blown away!

For those of you who don't know, The Mayan restaurant is like a Disneyland ride. The entryway is all decked out like a cave, inside there are treehouses, different platforms, tons of greenery, cliffs, waterfalls, etc. Every ten minutes or so, the water in the waterfalls gets really loud and these divers appear. They jump off pipes in the ceiling, off the waterfalls, everywhere. It's incredible! I loved it.

After dinner, we drove over to West Valley and hit up the drive-in for Toy Story 3. We drove Max [our little old-school BMW convertible] so we could lounge in the backseat and enjoy the show. It was awesome! I'd never been to the drive-in before. It rocked.

Because it was my first time to the drive-in, I didn't know that you get to watch both movies for one price. Prince of Persia started at around midnight. By one o'clock, I was fast asleep, so we took off and drove home. Next time I'll have to psyche up for the double feature!

Monday, September 13, 2010

We Bleed Blue

Those long car trips back and forth from Arizona gave us a lot of time to talk. We re-figured out C's graduation date, yes again, and he's now set to graduate next August. Less than a year from now! Because it's now officially our last year here in Utah, we decided to splurge on all-sports passes. We couldn't afford the football tickets though so I wasn't expecting to see the cougar football team at all this season unless it was on tv, but last Friday I woke up to a brand new BYU Football t-shirt and a note from C explaining that he'd scored some great seats and asking me out to the football game.

Man, I love dating him!

We had seats right at the 50-yard line, high up enough to see exactly what was going on and out of the student section so we didn't have to stand up the entire time. Perfection.

I still get a rush out of doing the wave with the thousands of other cougar fans. And yes, we won. :)

While waiting for the crowds to disperse, we used our all-sports passes to get into the volleyball tournament and cheer on our cougars during a match vs. Cal Poly. [Who, by the way, are green mustangs. Am I the only one from Flagstaff who finds that completely appalling?]

Once the match was over, traffic had totally cleared and we finished the night at 5 guys burgers and fries. Totally great date.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Sushi Night!

Sushi is by far my favorite food. It's pretty, yummy, and relatively good for you! My sister, Lindsay, got me a sushi book/bamboo mat/utensil kit for Christmas and we finally got the chance to use it last weekend!

We made rolls with smoked salmon [so yes, it was fully cooked. I'm not gutsy enough to go for the raw stuff.] and crab meat, scallions, cream cheese, avocado, and cucumbers [from our garden]. They turned out so much better than either of us thought they would! And we were way over prepared. We had a ton left over. This will be one meal we'll be doing again!

If you like sushi, don't be afraid to make it yourself! It looks intimidating, but it's much easier to make and make well than you think.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

McGuire Family Reunion

Family Reunions

Wow, has it really been THAT long since I last posted? We've been busy kids. Things have been changing quite a bit for us, but it's an exciting time of life. Isn't is always the case that when you have a lot to blog about, you never have time to actually sit down and write the posts? Please tell me I'm not the only one whose life seems to work out that way.

[This most likely won't be in chronological order, so if it seems a little disjointed I'm sorry! It's just all my thoughts at once right now.]

First off, we went to a couple of family reunions over Pioneer Day weekend. My mom's side for the first two days, and C's dad's side for the last two days. It was a great break. I do love the long car rides with just me and C. It makes for good conversation time that we don't get too often.

The problem is, this past month or so, I haven't taken very many pictures [read: none]. So, I'm stealing pictures off of my sister Lindsay's too cute [but private] blog.

At the Frost family reunion, we went down to the Snowflake temple for a family session. It was amazing to sit next to my grandmother and be able to see the legacy she's created with the strength of her family in the church. It was so wonderful to finish the session and look around and realize that everyone in the room was related to me. I love this gospel!

The next day, we went to hike Mt. Elden. We got to talking to uncle Mike and it came out that C absolutely loves Taco Bell. Little did he know, Mike owns a Del Taco. Before we got off the trail, Mike showed up with both a burrito and a burger from Del Taco. We've since been to Del Taco twice. Taco Bell is no longer on the radar. [And I'm thrilled. No more plastic cheese from caulk guns!]

That night, we drove down to the Call Family Reunion. They go camping every year, and this year it rained harder than I've seen in a long, long while. We all huddled under this huge awning and the guys would walk around and push up on the tarp to get the major gushes of water out of the pockets to keep it from collapsing in on us. It was really fun! I've always loved watching thunder storms and the kids loved the mud. I got to meet a few cousins I haven't been able to build a relationship with yet [ahem, Morgan & Carson, Wendy & Troy, and Shantelle & Andy.] And some much needed time with C's parents.

In other news, after I lost my job, we decided I wouldn't look for another job until Fall Semester started for C, so we could take a l.o.n.g vacation. We went to Lake Powell with my family for a week and then drove to QC for the next week for some Call Family time. :) [for you non-marrieds, please PLEASE marry into an awesome family. It's worth it. I totally scored on the in-law front and it has made all the difference in our marriage.]

Because I didn't take pictures, I don't have any proof that we actually did go on a vacation for two whole weeks, but I sure enjoyed living without being behind a lens! Lake Powell was a blast. [Minus the major melt-down after I dropped C's ring in the lake on my birthday and watched it sink hopelessly down to the bottom. Wonder-husband was the one comforting me instead of the other way around. He's incredible. We bought him a cheap-o at Walmart and (go figure) he actually prefers it.]

C totally tore it up on the wakeboard. Gosh, he's attractive. :)

We were also totally spoiled by getting to see Mackay, Lindsay and Lillie for an entire week.

Isn't she a doll? I had to post this one because I'm so proud of it. I took it!

My family really likes the show Wipeout. My dad will laugh so hard through that entire show, so we decided to make a Wipeout course on the lake and film the entire thing. We were "Team Lanky" The back of our shirts had our heights on them like athletic numbers. :)

Oh, how I love being his best friend. :) Thanks for being a dork with me, babe!

We had to go first, which means everybody got to watch us do the course first. Which also means that we were the only ones who actually did the course. Which means we lost. But the tapes show what really happened. :)

We celebrated our birthdays on the lake. [C's is the day after mine.] For my birthday, I dropped C's ring in the lake. It was right when the sun was going down so we left it and decided to dive for it early the next morning before getting off the lake. So on the morning of C's birthday, he got to dive to the bottom of the lake looking for a small piece of metal and blowing out his eardrums. [He is still battling an earache from that.]

Since all these pictures are from Lindsay's camera, I don't have a single picture from Queen Creek, but we really went and we really had a great time! We slept in [ok, I did. C got up and did yard work with his dad, which he loves. weird kid.] Adrienne spoiled us with birthday cake [and birthday sugar-free jello for her high-maintenance daughter-in-law.] We went to Canyon Lake a couple times to go wakeboarding. C& I both probably had the best runs of our lives. Amberlee learned how to go in and out of the wake. Everybody boarded including Kiara, Adrienne and Wayne! It was such a blast! The water was ice cold, but felt so good in the 100+ degree temps that whole week.

One night we were there, there was a rain storm that knocked the power out. We were playing cards and it was pouring. I can't remember the last time I was stuck in a Phoenix rain storm. If you haven't experienced that, it's a hot rain, it smells amazing, and you can see lightning as far as the eye can see. It's incredible.

Adrienne got out all the candles and we chatted and listened to the rain. I love that. There was also a movie theater down there that had a $5 deal all day so we went and saw Inception [awesome.] and Killers [not-so-awesome.] I also went to see eat. pray. love. with Adrienne and Kiara, but that movie was a disaster. We all found it boring, waste of time, and completely against our values. It wasn't necessarily offensive, it was just 'off'. idk.

C got a speeding ticket on his birthday while we were driving through Cameron, Arizona. Ironic? I think not. The officer had to write the current date and the driver's birthdate like right underneath each other. The officer knew. And he wrote C a ticket anyway. Jerk.

4 days later, C was driving a work truck of his dad's on the way to get some stuff fixed at the mechanic so it could pass safety and emissions, so it could get re-registered and insured. Well, he got pulled over. Kiara, Adrienne, and I saw him on the way to see and stopped behind him. Adrienne got out of the car, the officer wasn't too kind to her, because apparently that's illegal. By the time it all got cleared up, there were 3 cop cars behind C, one officer standing by the passenger side door like a bouncer, and C got another ticket. Cool. :) Happy Birthday week to us.

We did, though, manage to get home without getting another ticket. Granted, I drove most of the way. :)