30 June 2006

Jive talkin'

I'm much better today. My friends in the computer reminded me that I don't hate the whole world, just a few people who inhabit it. Even if it's not really their fault since they have no idea that being fertile and talking about it was what they did wrong (well, most of them, anyway).

But to take my mind off my TroublesTM, I turned to the one thing guaranteed to take away the pain: TV!

I watched an episode of Shalom in the Home with ubiquitous Orthodox Jewish tv personality, Shmuley Boteach, aka Rabbi to the Stars. He takes families with TroublesTM, tells them what they're doing wrong and shows them how to fix it. Actually, I think the two psychiatrists that consult on the show tell him what to tell them.

Anyway, so me-n-Hubby are sitting there watching the show, commenting on the fact that Shmuley gives hugs to the women who appear on the show. Obviously, he is not Shomer Negia. Then we started discussing the family that was featured.

In Judaism, there is a concept of Lashon Harah (literally, "evil speech"). It is forbidden to gossip. Whether the gossip is good (Chavie got that promotion!) or bad (Chavie got that promotion by sleeping with her boss), it is not allowed. There are loads of books on the subject, the most famous being "Chofetz Chaim" by Rabbi Israel Meir HaCohen Kagan (who is also known as the Chofetz Chaim). Lashon Harah is such a big no-no that there are websites, classes, lectures, even a foundation dedicated to the topic.

As we're discussing this family, and talking about what a media whore great family facilitator Shmuley is, I suddenly realized that Hubby and I are committing serious Lashon Harah by discussing Shmuley and this family. Shmuley created this show and hosts it, and presumably wants people to watch it. Research has shown that the success of these reality shows is primarily based on the viewer's reaction of superiority. "We're so much better than these people - we don't fight like that; we would never give in to our kids like that; we wouldn't raise our voices like that" etc., etc. And the very nature of holding someone up in public for criticism inspires the public to agree or disagree with that criticism, thereby causing them to discuss that person. Shmuley must know this. Doesn't that mean that this Orthodox Rabbi is not only providing an environment that facilitates and encourages Lashon Harah, but is also profiting from it?

And yes, I realize that this post is also a perfect example of Lashon Harah.

Oh goodie, it's happened again

So I had dinner last night with some friends. I stupidly forgot one of them was pregnant, but that's not such a big deal. Even if I had remembered, I could never have prepared myself for what happened after I arrived.

There were 3 very pregnant women, one mother who had recently given birth, one woman who "might have kids someday" but absolutely not now. And me.

Guess what the topic of conversation was for the entire effin' night?

Guess who sat there with a glazed look for the entire night and contributed nothing to the conversation?

Guess who went home miserable, but surprisingly, didn't collapse into a puddle of tears?

Guess who is hating the world today.

27 June 2006

Augh, I've been shot tagged!

Courtesy of the wonderful Meg. Maybe I ought to rethink that "wonderful" - this was a toughie!

Seven Things I'd Like to Do Before I Die:
  1. Have a family of my own.

  2. Finish writing the story I started a bajillion years ago.

  3. Move to Israel.

  4. Figure out what I'm meant to do with my life. If it's a career - what career? What is my contribution to the world supposed to be?

  5. Go to Yeshiva (sort of a university for Jewish learning. You don't necessarily walk away with a degree, though; it's learning for learning's sake.).

  6. Learn how to dress properly and have a closet that shows it. (Putting outfits together, being able to mix-n-match tops and skirts, not having hats gathering dust on my shelf, because I can't figure out what the hat goes with, etc.)

  7. Get further along in my family genealogy and then visit the hometowns of my ancestors.

Seven Things I Can't Do:
  1. Cook. My so-called loved ones say I should be registered as a lethal weapon in the kitchen.

  2. Work with my skills. Every "what is your perfect career" test I've ever taken has given the result that I should be an executive secretary. I'm anal organized enough, excellent at typing and dictation, extremely professional, brilliant at handling clients, blah blah. Problem is, I despise the "executive" side of it: taking minutes, making travel plans, sucking up to Chief Boss Man so he feels super important. Just because I'm good at something, doesn't mean I should make a career of it. Look, I'm extremely talented at being lazy. Should I make a career of that??

  3. Be patient with people I can't stand. I try, really, I do. But if someone who rubs me the wrong way starts chatting me up, I "mm-hmm" them and make a quick get-away, not always so politely. And sometimes, these people are totally innocent; they've done nothing wrong. They just rub me the wrong way.

  4. Exercise enough. I have a chronic condition that wipes me out if I over exert myself. Over exerting myself is walking too far or too fast. Forget my beloved aerobics and hiking.

  5. Let it go when I've been wronged and not acknowledged. Yes, you insulted me; yes, I know you didn't mean to. Just give me a freakin' meaningful apology and let's be done with it.

  6. Let go of stupid, miserable things I've done. I had a cat that died under unbelievably stupid circumstances, and I can't help feeling if only I'd done more, I could have saved her, and I have not been able to forgive myself for not saving her for 20 years. Nor can I get the circumstances out of my mind easily when it occasionally pops up.

  7. Be a really good girl friend. I don't go shopping, I don't hang out and chat, I don't do my nails. I'm just not a "girly" friend. So I've never been able to open up to having a best friend. I can be a good friend, a really good friend, just not a "best girlfriend."

Seven Things That Attracted Me to My Partner:
  1. His goofy sense of humour that matches mine to a T.

  2. His sea-blue eyes.

  3. His brilliance.

  4. He cooks! And cooks gourmet!

  5. His willingness and desire to grow Jewishly with me.

  6. How concerned he was for others' welfare. But not in a skeevy way.

  7. His idea of what is important in life matches mine.
(Wait! Where do I fit in his awesome foot rubs?!)

Seven Books That I Love:
  1. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. I want my own Secret Garden.

  2. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë. "If he loved you with all the power of his soul for a whole lifetime, he couldn't love you as much as I do in a single day." I can read this book over and over and over. I love the time period, the freedom of the moors, the despair of Heathcliff, the wildness of Catherine, the darkness of the Heights. I find something new in it every time. I can also watch the movies over and over. Laurence Olivier's Heathcliff is so angry and bitter compared to the darkness and wildness of Ralph Feines' portrayal. Apparently there was a 1970 version with Timothy Dalton as Heathcliff (that must have been AMAZING!), but the ending was changed. And it's not available on video. And is that rumour about Johnny Depp still floating around? *swoon*

  3. Anything in the Alex Delaware series by Jonathan Kellerman. It's fluff, but it's page-turning fluff (it's also violent, sicko fluff, but that just adds to the fun!).

  4. The Torah (okay, technically, it's actually five books, but they're usually bound together as one.)

  5. The Source by James Michener. I'd love to read it again, but I'm a little intimidated by the length. That was okay when I had never read it, but now it seems like a real commitment.

  6. The Dragons of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey. I love this series. I love the whole idea of having a symbiotic relationship with your dragon.

  7. This is tough. I'm a read-aholic; I simply adore books and I am never without one. So it's really, really hard to pick only seven. So maybe #7 is "every other book ever written (rather, nearly every other book - those Philip Roth books definitely aren't landing on any "love" list of mine!).

Seven Movies I Watch Over and Over:
  1. Singin' in the Rain. Just love it. Especially Donald O'Connor's amazing "Make 'em Laugh"

  2. King and I. I lovelovelove Yul Brynner. I love the music. I love the costumes. I love the Broadway show more, but we're talking movies here. Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. "Anna: Then how do you explain, your majesty, that many men remain faithful to only one wife? King: They are sick."

  3. The original Star Wars movies.

  4. The Court Jester with Danny Kaye. That vessel. That flagon...

  5. Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. I know, I know, but I can't help it. Costner's various accents are atrocious, but c'mon: Alan Rickman!

  6. Highlander. The original. So what if the Scottish immortal has a French accent, and the Spanish immortal has a Scottish brogue?

  7. Pretty much anything by Alfred Hitchcock. I've seen "The Birds" a few thousand times.

Seven People I Want to Tag
Now apparently, I'm supposed to tag seven poor souls with this. I don't know seven suckers wonderful bloggers, but I'll do my best here.

1. Jenny from the Infertility Block
2. Ms. X on her Barren Island
3. Lut C. getting iffy with it
4. Robbie @ Ovaries on Strike. Even if she is pre-occupied.
5. Ruth @ Ruth's Megillah

Yeah, that's it. Them's all I feel comfortable hitting up, as my regular readers. Good luck, ladies!

23 June 2006

And furthermore

Thinking more about the article regarding clowning, mentioned in this post and also in this article, the frustrating thing is they list the age range of patients from 25 to 40, but they don't specify the ages of the women who became pregnant. Not to mention that a study of 186 women is not a legitimate study. And the specifics: what are the circumstances of these women? What percentage have PCOS? What percentage are age-related infertility? What percentage are unknown causes? What percentage are male-factor? Was the control group identical to the clown group? Three women are 27 with PCOS, four women are 30 with male factor, etc., etc.?

This article is useless. The study is probably useless, too, seeing as it was only 186 women.

Tell me you're going to come in and pay for my whole treatment if you want to reduce my stress. Leave out the clowns.

22 June 2006

There's a joke in there somewhere

Really. There has to be a joke in this story.

Ah, but this is probably why I'm not laughing:
Experts said helping patients relax was the key to increasing conception rates.
Or, to put it more simply: JUST RELAX

Save the clowns, play me some old Monty Python shows instead. It'll be way cheaper.

*Edited to add: Julie, not surprisingly, already covered this article today.

15 June 2006

Between my heart and me

Sometimes, in the privacy of my heart, I allow myself to get really angry at my husband. I get angry at him for having had a vasectomy instead of letting his first wife get her tubes tied. I get furious at him for waiting so long for us to get married. I silently yell at him for taking so long to make arrangements to have a vas reversal. I rant that he decided to be self-employed, which did not allow us to have significant savings, so that now, after paying for the reversal, the MESA and one IVF cycle, we have used up all our options and have no way of financing IVF so we can have children. I cry that we have all this love and no one to share it with.

Then, in the privacy of my heart, I apologize and ask forgiveness for being so angry.

This way, I get out all my anger, and I never have to worry about saying something hurtful to him directly in the heat of an argument. He already knows these things. He already feels most of this himself. There is no need for me to rub it in his face.

Sometimes, I can't help feeling the way I do, and I have to let it out somehow.

14 June 2006

I'll take Riboflavin for $100, Alex

This is so cool! A while back, Jenny mentioned fitday (I'm too lazy to look up the exact blog reference, sorry). I looked at the site, thought, "hey, neat," bookmarked it and figured I'd check it out at a later date.

Since we all know I don't really care about my weight (What? Of course I'm going to look up my own blog reference.), checking out fitday wasn't high on my list of priorities. I finally did look at it, though, and oh-so-cool! I LOVE entering in everything I've eaten, and seeing my caloric intake, fat content, carb percentage, how I'm doing in terms of meeting my RDA requirements, etc., etc. Although, it should depress me because I eat mostly grains and veggies (like I said, I'm a pretty healthy eater), so why are my Vitamins K, A, E, Zinc, etc., etc. all so low? Ironically, vegetarians (I'm not completely; I eat meat once in a blue moon) need to be concerned about getting enough Vitamin B6, but I'm really good on that.

However, doing some research on the afore-mentioned Vitamins and minerals has led to some interesting discoveries. I bruise really easily. Symptom of low Vitamin K. There were more, but I won't bore you with the details. I've also been reminded that I don't eat enough fruit.

I'm not doing this for the purpose of losing weight, but maybe that will be an accidental side effect. Primarily, it's fascinating to me to look at my day's intake and see how it all affects my body.

Warning: This website is not for the faint of heart. An obsessive-compulsive personality is extremely helpful. As is keeping all your packaging so you can enter foods that aren't already on the list. Besides, it's way more fun than charting.

Potato chips ala projgen

I want potato chips. Since we're broke (oh, and they're really bad for you), we haven't bought chips in a long time. Not that we used to buy them so often, but once in a while they'd be a nice treat. I've been craving chips for a few weeks, so I decided I'd make my own (much healthier, too!).

And now, for your enjoyment, the result of my experiments:
Infertility Chips*
3 medium sized potatoes
pinch kosher salt (large, coarse salt)
Preheat oven to 500°

1. Scrub the potatoes (I don't peel them, but you can if you want to lose all those yummy nutrients)

2. Slice them as thin as you can (if you have a veggie slicer, slice 'em about 1/8" thick)

3. Soak slices in a bowl of water (make sure water covers slices completely) for about an hour

4. Remove slices from water and pat dry with a towel

5. Spray cookie sheet with olive oil if you have a mister, if not, just smear some around with a paper towel.

6. Sprinkle a little bit of kosher salt onto the cookie sheet

7. Lay chips in a single layer on cookie sheet, then lightly spray with olive oil

8. Bake for 7 minutes, flip chips over, bake for another 7. Watch them carefully towards the last few minutes - depending on your oven, it may take less than 7.

Depending on the size of your cookie sheet, you may have to do a few batches. Or just make one potato.

I didn't think they needed any additional salt, but salt as needed.


To flavour them, add flavouring to water - vinegar & salt, ketchup, etc. We're going to experiment with barbecue!

I'm also going to try sweet potatoes, so I'll let you know how that goes.

* Well, why not? We're either being told to lose weight to do a cycle, or we're sadly squeezing that bit of belly we got from our last round of injections. Why not something decadent and not so bad for us? Of course, the fertile world can enjoy them, too.

13 June 2006

Call my agent

Ugh, where's my motivation, people? Please. I simply cannot work like this. The mind is so empty it astounds. Seriously. Nuh.thing.there. Empty! EMPTY!*


Anyone got any questions I could answer? Like, what's the boiling point of mercury? How long does my dog have to lick his paw before I finally can't stand the slurping noise anymore? Why wasn't I let on to the cheerleading squad in high school?


Sorry. I'm so happy for Persephone, and cautiously happy for Amanda. And in spite of getting confronted with not one, but two pregnant women this Shabbat, I managed to actually feel happy for them. Even without wine.

*Gratuitous Wings reference

09 June 2006


How rude. Here I wanted to post about how I have nothing to post about and Blogger was gunged up the whole day.

So yeah, I have nothing interesting to say. I'm just hanging around waiting on a beta and an ultrasound or two. There are lot of us cycling right now (look how she uses the word "us" as if she were one of them. Ha.), so lots of love is flowing around the 'net.

Oh yeah. I'm also waiting for some kind of update from Persephone. What up? Twins or no twins, 'seph, you have a responsibility to your readers. Give us an update (pictures?!), because we need some sleep. And some Ben-Gay to relieve the cramp in my refresh finger.

06 June 2006

Strap on your lid and pass the biscuit, I've got my twig and I'm going for a hat trick

If there was ever a doubt that Canadians truly love their hockey, this announcement appeared in the latest edition of the Edmonton Jewish Pipeline:
"The Annual General Meeting of the Talmud Torah Society will be held at 6:00 PM on xxxday June xth at the school, xxx Street.

The time was moved to 6PM so as not to be in conflict with the Oilers Stanley Cup game broadcast. GO OILERS GO!"

Where's that instruction book?

Since I'm not feeling well, and can't think on my own, this is for all you folks out there who skim through directions, all you gals who nodded and "mm-hmm"ed throughout the nurse's injectables orientation, and my homies who never, EVER read software instruction manuals. That would be, like, dorky.


01 June 2006


Marriage is a relationship in which one person is always right,
and the other is a husband.

Chag Sameach (joyful holiday) everyone! I'll be hopefully eating blintzes and ice cream for the next two days. Oh yeah, and studying that big ol' rule book G-d gave us.

*Gratuitous Princess Bride reference.

Excuse me, may I have your attention?

Now this is my kind of news!

Mazal tov, Persephone and Lance.

*Update: um, duh - and Welcome to the World, baby boys Aleph and Bet!