Monday, 30 April 2012

30 Days of Grateful Blogging - Days 5 & 6

Ok, so I'm gonna cheat a bit and put days 5 and 6 together.  There's one simple reason for this.  Yesterday's thing I was grateful for has been a lifesaver again for me today.  Drugs!  Hahaha, I know how that sounds.  Sunny's a junkie?  Well, no I'm not.  But I do really appreciate a good pain reliever.  And the last two days I have been relying on them to get me through work and to be able to sleep through the night.

With it now being 12 days post ovulation I am dead on schedule to get my period.  And with that comes the three days of bloating and cramping pre-fanny blowout and all the joy that follows.  I am currently waiting, with hormonal rage, for my period to show, and I know she's a'coming because everything from my rib cage down aches like a biatch.  Particularly my lower back.

If it wasn't for my favourite codeine and paracetamol combination I wouldn't be able to walk right now.  It kicks my cramping and bloating to the curb for a good three hours of pain free existence.  Seriously, if there were any drug company that wanted to sponsor us poor chicks with period pain, I'd fully recommend anyone that makes decent analgesics!  Trust me, I've tried a few different combos when attempting to rid my body of this horrible pain, and only a few certain things have helped.  And since us infertiles know that Ibuprofen is considered one of the greatest evils, paracetamol combos really are the only way to go.

Listen to me, anyone would think I was a nurse!? HAHA!  But, when you spend all day handing out some of the strongest forms of pain relief to others, you come to learn what works, and what doesn't.  And there's nothing quite like good old panadol!  

So cheers to analgesics!  For you I am truly grateful! 

Saturday, 28 April 2012

30 Days of Grateful Blogging - Day 4

Today I am grateful for positive feedback.  I won an award!  It feels really lovely to know that the words you write, especially when the topics are so personal, are reaching others out there.  I never knew how much I would fall in love with blogging, but now I can't live without it!

This gorgeous little award was given to me by Em Hart, over at Follow Every Rainbow.  Em has been one of my most favourite blog commenters for a while, and being as daft as I am, only just realised she too had a lovely little blog of her own (sorry, Em!)
Em's blog is also about life and love in the middle of infertility.  She's witty and funny and honest!  I have loved back-reading through her posts over the last week.  So head over there and say hi!

There's just one thing about this award, you gotta earn it. Here's how:
  1. Share who gave you this award to you with a link back to their blog (above)
  2. Write down 7 random facts about yourself.
  3. Give this award to 15 other bloggers.
  4. Let them know they've won
  5. Pop the award on your blog  
Ready for some Sunny randomness?
  1. My hair used to be straight as an arrow!  But since I've started fertility medications it's become an unruly, wavy mess.  But I'm learning to love it!
  2. I am painfully allergic to latex.  I break out in hives and a very itchy, sore rash on contact.  This made for some very interesting and embarrassing pre-baby making sex as I'd have to run to the bathroom to run cool water over my lady business.  Teehee!
  3. It's not really a secret that I love blood and guts.  The messier, grosser and gooier the better!  My husband says that under all my sweetness there is a creepy woman lying in waiting.  He may be right?!
  4. When I was little there was a girl who had the same name as me, but spelled differently by one letter.  She was like my exact opposite.  She was short and plump, really loud and nasty, and liked to pick on other kids.  She was so mean to me about that one letter and we ended up being enemies from the time I was five until age 10.
  5. I dated my best friend's twin brother for about four years in high school. Everyone thought we might get married, but we didn't.  Which is kind of sad, because it would have been awesome to have her as my sister!
  6. When I first started nursing on the ward I'm in now my husband realised he knew my boss, SG.  Out of the blue he got reconnected with some very old and dear friends.  Nearly six years later, we're all still great mates and SG and I are as close as sisters.  I'm sad I don't get to see her everyday since she moved out of state.
  7. When I was little, all I ever wanted to be was a chef.  When it came time to apply for university and pick a profession I decided against it, to become a nurse.  Mostly because people kept telling what crappy hours chefs work.  Ironic much?     
 Ok, so now comes the hard part.  Here are my nominations:
  1. A Life Less Frantic 
  2. MissConception 
  3. Life, Loss and Other Things 
  4. NieNie Dialogues 
  5. Fertility Freak
  6. Mrs Woogs World 
  7. Follow Every Rainbow  
  8. Glitter and Rainbows 
  9. Journey Through IF 
  10. Colour Me Katie 
  11. Whisk and a Prayer 
  12. The Infertile Gynecologist 
  13. Life As Dad To Donor Insemination Kids 
  14. Salvation Jane (Home) 
  15. Junque - Modernly Shabby Chic Furniture 
So, thank you for your feedback.  I believe all feedback can be constructive, so keep it coming!

30 Days of Grateful Blogging - Day 3

In the mail on Thursday I received a very surprising little package.  I had ordered a few books online from Better World Books about a week before and thought that maybe I'd just lucked out on super quick postage.  But the package Hubby brought in from the mailbox was too small and too light to be my order.  On the back the return sender's address was our sister Chelby.

Inside the package was a card and a very familiar looking dark blue jewelry box. Chelby works in a jewelry store, so little blue boxes mean something extra special.  I opened the card first (which I always do when given a gift) and inside was a beautiful story about how she'd experienced her friend's infertility and saw how the power of prayer meant that this friend was now expecting their first baby.  Her friend wore a little gold locket around her neck with a picture of her husband on one side, and left the other side blank in the hopes of one day having a baby photo to place on the other.  Chelby had listened to her friend's story and saw her sadness first hand.  She then prayed long and hard for this woman and her husband, until one day she had good news to share.

This was a very powerful message to our dear sister.  She felt that the locket was a wonderful symbol of how God really does answer your prayers. If you have hope and love in your heart, the power of prayer can help you achieve your dreams.  She bought herself a little gold locket, and wears it every day.

I opened the jewelry box, tears streaming down my face.  Inside was a little gold locket.  Our very own symbol of how God will answer our prayers too, in good time.  We just have to keep praying.

Today I am grateful for a number of things.  I am grateful for surprises.  I am grateful to have married into a family that loves me as if I had always been theirs.  I am grateful for the prayers of others.  I am grateful that we can be taught life lessons from so many different people, even our younger siblings.  I am grateful that our children will have such a big, warm family to come into.

Today, I am so grateful!

Thursday, 26 April 2012

30 Days of Grateful Blogging - Day 2

*YAWN*  Today my friends, I am grateful for sleep!!

I love my job.  I was born to be a nurse, among other things, of course.  But nursing is the one thing I know I am good at, and have worked very hard to make that so.  I would recommend nursing as a job to anyone who likes to be kept on their toes, loves blood and guts (which I do!) and who doesn't mind a challenge.  HOWEVER, I would not recommend it to anyone who likes to work Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, does not cope well with lack of sleep and who can't live without their pumping social life.  Let's face it - shift work SUCKS!!

This week I have been on night shifts.  These in themselves aren't so bad.  It's usually 10.30pm through to about 7.30am.  I tend to do two or three in a row so my body catches up and gets in a routine.  This week however, I have done one on Monday, followed by a day off, a 5am start for ANZAC Day services, and then I'm back to night duty again tonight.  And my body does not love me for it!  

I am trying to be good, as I'm seven days post ovulation, and keep my caffeine intake to as low as possible.  My daily average though: 3 cups of tea, 2 coffees (iced or brewed) and a soft drink.  Not a great number really.  Oh well.  It's the only thing keeping me upright when I need to be at the moment.

BUT, last night I crawled into bed at 11.30pm, and didn't crawl out of it again until 2pm this afternoon!!  All that sleep I'd missed out on for the last four days had finally been caught up.  And I can't tell you how lovely I feel this afternoon!  I didn't wake with that hangover-style headache, that ache in my stomach from eating weird food in the middle of the night, or the yearning to go back to bed.   I feel awake!  I feel alive!!  And for that I am truly grateful.  Because in six hours, I will shower, put on my uniform and go back into work for the night.  Hurray for sleep!!

P.S.  Found this interesting little infographic on Pinterest today.  Thought you'd might like to take a squizz at it too.


Wednesday, 25 April 2012

30 Days of Grateful Blogging - Day 1

It's ANZAC Day here in Australia.  A day when we commemorate the efforts of our servicemen and women, who have fought with honour and pride alongside their allies, since this day in 1914.  We have fought for freedom and justice both on home shores and abroad, in over 10 different nations world wide.  We have answered the call for help, when all hope seemed lost.  And we came heroes to our loved ones and our country.

Today I am grateful to be able to share in such an important tradition.  Early this morning I attended a service held by the Royal Australian Navy - Corvette Association, on the banks of the beautiful Brisbane River.  With a crowd of little of 100 attendants, we sang Naval songs and said prayers for all those who defended us by sea.  My husband and his brass band, The South Brisbane Federal Band, were invited to play for the ceremony.  It was simply moving. 

After this, we made a quick dash back into the city for the Brisbane City ANZAC Parade.  Of all the years we've lived in Brisbane, we've never made the trek in on the day because we attend smaller, local services.  Today, however, The Feds were invited to march and play alongside some of the diggers.  I had NO idea how much went into making this parade work.  The whole of King George Square was full of servicemen and women, bands, school groups, veterans, and media, all waiting for their call to march.  The march twice around the city square block and head up into ANZAC Square.  There is an overwhelming sense of pride that washes over you as you see all those heroes marching to the beat of the various bands (brass, drumming, pipe).  

As I was trying to find myself somewhere to set up camp and view the parade, I spotted something very special out of the corner of my eye.  A group women in original 1914 military nurse uniforms!  As a nurse myself (and a proud one from a very long heritage, I might add) this made my heart skip a beat.  Those gorgeous red capelets and crisp white gloves epitomize the women's contribution to early war time.    

I am grateful for tradition.  I am grateful for the efforts of others.  I am grateful to those who gave their all for the freedom of our country; who defended us in dark and perilous times throughout history; to the men and women away from their families today, doing just the same, including our brother, Adam, who is currently on his tour of duty.  I am grateful that their bravery will NEVER be forgotten.  And that some day we will teach our children about love, honour, sacrifice and bravery, through their stories.


Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Happy Blogiversary!

Wednesday the 25th of April is my BLOGIVERSARY!! 

Yep, that's right ladies, you've been listening to me blog on for a whole year!!
And in honour of how much I love your support and encouragement, I am going to set myself a challenge...
30 Days of Grateful Blogging
I will share a blog post a day for the next 30 days about all the things I am grateful for in my life.  
Feel free to join in, too. I'd love to hear about the things that brighten your days.
Or catch up with me and a great bunch of women on my Facebook page, for a more interactive chat. 

Thanks for an amazing 12 months! 
Sunny xx   

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Banana Bread

2 cups self-raising flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 skim milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
50g butter, melted and cooled
3 over ripe bananas, mashed

  1.  Preheat oven to 180'C.  Grease and line a loaf pan, allowing it to overhang.
  2. Sift flour and cinnamon into a large bowl.  Stir in brown sugar and make a well in centre.  
  3. Place the milk, eggs, cooled butter and mashed banana in separate bowl.  Stir until combined.
  4. Pour banana mixture into centre of flour mixture.  With a spoon, fold mixture until just combined.  Make sure not to over mix.  
  5. Spoon mixture into prepared pan.  Bake in oven for 45-50minutes, or until golden brown and firm to touch.  Cool for 10minutes in pan before turning on wire rack.
  6. Eat while warm, or serve cool with butter.

Rock Cakes

2 cups self-raising flour
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
90g butter, softened
1/3 cup castor sugar
1 cup sultanas (I always add more)
2 tablespoons mixed peel
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoons castor sugar, extra
  1. Sift flour and cinnamon into large bowl.  Rub in butter.  Stir in sugar and fruit.  
  2. Stir in egg, and enough milk to give a moist but firm consistency.
  3. Place 1/2 tablespoon portions of mixture into balls on a lightly greased baking tray about 5cm apart.  Sprinkle tops with extra sugar.
  4. Bake in a moderate oven for about 15minutes or until browned.  Loosen cakes and cool on trays.  (If you like them a little crunchier, an extra 2-5minutes should be enough)
This recipe is adapted from The Australian Women's Weekly - 
Sweet Old Fashioned Favourites. 

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Apology to a pregnant friend

I read this beautifully articulated post by the amazing Janelle Moran "Why me?" the other day, and it saddened me that I related to it in a very close and profound way.  It also made me realise, that sometimes our acts of self-preservation as an infertile person, can come across as cold and misunderstood to those around us.  Especially our pregnant friends.  So I wanted to take a little bit of time to say something to my pregnant and trying friends and loved ones.

I love you!  You are my friend, and we have been that way for a long time or a short time, but always a great time.  I am so happy for your happiness.  I wished it for you as hard as your wished it for yourselves.  And I will keep that same wish alive, no matter my personal circumstances.  

I apologise if my actions or words towards you during this wonderful, emotional, exciting time in your life has felt cold and distant, that is not how I truly feel, nor will it ever be.  I do not deny that I have kept a distance on days when I have felt less than 100 percent able to give you my fullest, most loving attention.  I do this not to hurt you, but to not hurt myself.  Your blossoming belly is a magical and amazing thing to watch, as it expands with your growing baby, and there will be times that I too, want to feel the kicks from within.  But there will be others, when I walk away from the crowds of cooing women who adore you.  

I want to share your joy in buying beautiful nursery items and sweet baby clothing, but I will not join you in the baby section and maternity clothing aisles.  I will wait patiently to the side, distracting myself from the pain that those soft fabrics bring to my heart.  

I will send you gifts, lovingly purchased and wrapped, with my fondest wishes written inside the card, for you and your new precious bundle.  And I will mean every single word I wrote.  But I may cry to myself about not sharing your joy as you hold your new one close to you.

I will offer to mind, cuddle and hold your little one while you are busy managing nappy changes, feeding time and a pram full of mummy equipment. And I will look into your child's eyes and fall in-love with them. But my heart will break as I hand them back to you, their mummy, so you can attend their needs.

The sadness in my heart does not take away from the love I have towards you, the excitement I share with you for your grand adventure, or the continuing friendship we will share.  My sadness is my own.  And I am working on separating it far from everything else, so that I may be able to fully enjoy your pregnancy with you.  

And I know, my true friend, that you wish grand things for me too.  We have shared our desire to parent side by side, and we will, one day.  But right now, it is your turn.  And I AM happy for you.

So I leave you with this...  On the days when I seem far away, the days when I am not 100 percent supportive, the days I seem bitter or jealous; please remember I love you, and I'm sorry.