Going Granola: Rattlesnake Ledge

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It’s been a while since we have had a chance to do any hiking up here in the PNW.  It’s also been a while since we’ve gotten our heart rates over 100.  These gloomy days are good for eating, drinking, and laying on the couch with a nice fluffy blanket. But, with all this sunshine lately, we just had to get outdoors.  Mind you, it is still in the 40’s.

S did an awesome job of researching hikes that were just our level (easy-moderate) with great scenery and found:  Rattlesnake Ledge.

It was the coldest hike I had ever been on.  So cold, in fact, that I’m pretty sure my ear drums froze.  We both got seriously terrible ear pain climbing up the mountain.  With a 4 mile round trip I was hoping it would go away fast.  Luckily, once our bodies got warmed up the pain went away.  We huffed and puffed all the way up, but it was worth it!  Just take a look at the amazing view from the top.

rattlesnake lake

Here are some highlights from this beautiful fall hike:

  • The gorgeous lake at the base of the mountain
  • When you start the trail you are immediately transported into the forests of Twilight (Can we say Edward?)
  • The top of the hike offers a great rocky ledge to enjoy the view and a snack
  • Very popular hike, makes you feel safe from cougars or bears (I’m a wimp)
  • Very dog friendly  (The Runyun Canyon of the PNW?)
  • Easy enough not to give up halfway, but challenging enough to keep you breathing heavily

 

Way to Start the Week

Ah, there are so many reasons to look forward to the rest of this week.

1) I get to fly back home and hang out with my friends and family

2) I only have to work 3 days

3) I am gonna stuff my face with delicious food

4) I just found this, and can watch it on repeat:

It is SO much better than the KimYe version.  (I shudder just thinking about it)  Seth Rogen’s batting eyelashes are THE best. Check it out!

 

 

What’s Your Passion?

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Do you believe this?  I recently had a conversation with a colleague about relationships, work, and above all else having a passion that guides you in life.  It was a difficult conversation for me to take part in, because honestly, I had never thought about what my own passion in life might be.  To her, it seemed that unless you had something that you couldn’t get enough of, something you couldn’t stop learning about, something that would never stop making you grow as a person, what were you doing with your life?  Maybe that passion is your career, or maybe it’s what you do in your leisure time, but everyone has a passion (so she believes).

My contribution to that conversation was, “What if you don’t?”  Then I started thinking about what my passion could be. She made it sound like your passion was your world. So I thought: Is it teaching?  probably not.  Is it creating objects whether it be quilts, scarves, paintings…? I do love that.  But crafting doesn’t qualify as a passion, does it?  Is it my family and friends?  I absolutely love spending time with them and talking with them, but are people a passion?  I like traveling! Although, I’ve seen people way more passionate about traveling than myself.  At the end of this conversation I felt rather inferior for being a passionless bore.

Then I remembered, I really like my life.  I like blogging when I feel like it, I like being able to travel when we can, I like shopping with friends, I like going on pinterest for hours, I like lounging with my hubby and watching tv…Maybe I don’t have a fervor for any one thing that consumes me, but eh, I don’t mind.  She might say that I’m wasting my life away, but I am enjoying every minute of it.

So my question to you: Do you think having a passion is essential to getting the most out of life?  If so, what’s your passion?

Online Personality Quizzes? Sign Me Up!

Remember in college when you spent hours procrastinating by taking online quizzes?  Which flower are you?  What dog breed are you?  What type of shoe are you?  I took every quiz under the sun, just to “learn” more about myself.  How self-absorbed can one kid be?  Well, it’s been years  since I’ve gotten into the “who am I?” “what kind of person am I?” phase.  I think I know myself pretty well at this point in my life.  I’ve had 3 decades to figure it out.  (Not to say that we’re not constantly evolving creatures)  So when Fox in the Hen House posted about her animal personality type, I just had to follow suit.  Ahhhh, nostalgia.

Finding out about my animal personality was a two step process.  I had to go here first to get my basic personality rating. Turns out I’m an ISFJ (Introvert, duh; Sensing, ok; Feeling, no kidding; Judging, sigh).  Then I went to this site to decode it into animal terms.  Turns out this is me:

 ISFJ: Deer

ISFJ: Deer

ISFJs are quiet, observant, and thoughtful. They are interested in maintaining order and harmony, avoiding fast-moving cars, and respecting everyone’s feelings. They are often described by the few people who know them deeply as being incredibly sensitive and trustworthy.

I think the “avoiding fast-moving cars” is spot on.  But seriously, how cute am I?

Mercy

My last post was pretty defeatist.  Maybe that’s not the right word.  We had just sort of resigned to whatever our last attempt would bring.  Though, neither of us was expecting too much.  Our friends and family were praying for us, thinking of us, supporting us.  We were in the moment, not two steps ahead, nor dwelling on the past.  We had finally come to the point where we really believed:
300ec4d8414493ac8b9d4af263ed61afAnd the universe, God, our bodies had mercy on us.   The cycle turned out to be one of the best we had ever had.  IVF #1 was canceled because only 3 eggs matured.  We didn’t even make it to retrieval.  IVF #2 made it to retrieval, but the 3 eggs were abnormal/immature.  These were bleak statistics.  So, you can imagine that we just had to give it up to the fertility gods this time.  IVF #3 was a shocker.  I actually developed 12 eggs! A freakin’ dozen! Like a hen.  In the end, 8 were retrieved, 7 were mature and fertilized.

We let our future babies grow to blastocyst stage.  If you let your embryos grow to blastocyst there’s a great chance you will lose most of them.  Only the strong survive, and from what I could tell about 35-40% survive to this stage.  On day 5 (the typical day Blastocysts develop) we only had 2.  Since our RE wanted us to transfer 2 at a time, this meant we had one shot to make a baby.  ONE.  We were happy for the chance, but a little frightened that one chance wasn’t enough.  But, we were grateful that we had gotten this far.  Just. so.  grateful!

Then something magical happened.  The 3 remaining embryos were given one last day to develop, and they did! Now we have 5 embryos (potential children) in the freezer.  We didn’t transfer any yet, because my body needs to recover from all these crazy meds I’ve been on.   Now a Frozen Embryo Transfer is in our future.  (something we’ve never had the chance to experience)  While we are overjoyed with having made it through the first few hurdles of this cycle, we know that the next step is probably the hardest.  We are really trying not to get ahead of ourselves, or become obsessive worry warts about the process (That’s really directed at me.  I’m totally obsessing over whether to do a medicated vs. natural FET.  Help, anyone?).

We are so thankful that we’ve come this far, and I truly believe it’s because of every single person that has kept us in their thoughts and prayers.  We are so lucky to have so many great people sending hope and positive energy into the world for us.  We hope you can keep it up for just a little longer.  We’re almost there.