IVF #5 – Stim Day 20 – The Last Night of Stims – The 411

One More Day

Today is officially my LAST NIGHT of Stimming !!   I have been patiently injecting myself am and pm for the past 20 days !  Tomorrow morning, I do my injection of Ganirelix, Neupogen, and Lovenox and then I wait until 9:30 pm and do my 1st Novarel trigger shot.

I went in this morning for monitoring and I have 11 follicles on the right and 3 on the left.  I am hoping that by Saturday retrieval they are ALL mature and retrievable.  I am getting anxious.  I just need this to be MY cycle !  My doctor called in a script for Viagra for me to take vaginally to make sure my lining is an 8. Of course insurance will not cover it and its $41 per pill !   $900 for a prescription… I swear insurance companies are rip offs !  Since my lining looks pretty good today, as opposed to the drop it took last week on Friday, I am only going to get 4 of the 20 pills they called in.

IVF 5 stim day 2                           IVF 5 - Follistim   ivf 5 stim day 4 neupogen     ivf 5- viagara                 ivf 5 meds 2

This evening, I will inject the Gonal-F and Menopur.   I have packed all of my belongings and shipped them to the hotel and I have my dress and coat laid out that I am wearing for the funeral tomorrow.  I am going to just wear it to NY since I am not lugging luggage with me.  It is easier to just wear a comfy dress and take my dressier satin overcoat that I will switch into and a pair of heels. I am taking an oversize purse with my laptop in it and the heels so it will be easy for me to move about.  I am meeting my make up artist for breakfast in the morning and then leaving from breakfast and heading up to the Bronx to the funeral.  I am not looking forward to attending a double funeral AT ALL !   I absolutely HATE funerals.  They are too sad.  I will be there to show my love and support and will forgo the burial.

I will update tomorrow with how things went ~

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IVF #5 – Stim Day 19 – The 411

ivf 5 - keep calm stim on bear

19 days and counting…. Just two more days of stims and then hopefully Thursday night is trigger #1 and Friday is trigger #2 and then I can get these little eggs out of me before my babies come out looking like Benjamin Button ! lol

I did my normal injections this morning of Ganirelix, Lovenox and Neupogen.  I took the 20mg of Prednisone, Claritin, and also took my prenatal vitamin.  This afternoon, I took the Folate and also the Synthroid.  I will inject Gonal-F tonight (ran out of Follistim and the two are interchangeable) and the Menopur.  I have a pm prenatal that I take along with more Prednisone and the Vitamin D emulsion.

I just packed up my clothing, shoes, notes for my book, sheets, and heating pad into a box and have it sitting waiting on FedEx to pick it up and ship it ahead to the hotel.  I am elated to not have to drag luggage with me all around New York while I am in the city for the funerals.  I will leave from the funeral and head to midtown, grab lunch in Penn Station or nearby and then hop on the train to Albany.  It will be nice to be in a quiet hotel suite, equipped with a full kitchen, and no grandmom to ask me every five minutes if there is something she can help me do !  Thank you Jesus !   🙂    She means well, but at times, it is taxing. I wish she could do some of my writing so that I can take a nap LOL.

Today, my mom had her first radiation treatment.   All went well and we met with the doctor afterwards. I took her to lunch at PF Chang’s and then home we went.  After she worked for a while, I made her go to bed to take a nap and rest.   She is probably downstairs on her Ipad or cellphone playing around on Facebook lol.

In regards to my swelling ovaries, I spoke too soon !  Those things seem to start filling up late last night about 11-12 and felt like they were being blown up a bit kinda like a balloon for several hours.  It was so noticeable that I could not sleep from the discomfort.  My tummy is now a bit distended so I am hoping that nothing is growing out of proportion or too fast and I end up having the surgery on Friday.  I was looking forward to having all day Friday to relax and maybe catch a movie at the mall up the street from the hotel, hang out in the huge Border’s Bookstore and get a juicy burger from Five Guys in the food court.   Hopefully I will be able to get that in.

More tomorrow after my scan…. I am going to take a nap before I have to go to infertility support group meeting tonight !

The Real Neat Blog Award

real-neat-blog-award

Another Blog Award !  YAY !!!  Thank you so much Stitching A Family (https://stitchingafamily.wordpress.com/) for nominating me for this award.  Please go over and check out her blog !  I am so honored and humbled that she follows my blog and thought enough of what I have to say to nominate me for an award 🙂

The Rules:

  • Put the Award Logo in your post.
  • Answer 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
  • Thank the people who nominated you, linking to their blogs.
  • Nominate any number of bloggers you like, linking to their blogs.
  • Let them know you nominated them (by commenting on their blog)

The Questions:

I’m gonna steal a few of these questions, and add my own. So here are your questions:

What are your hobbies?

My hobbies are pretty much baseball, writing, and listening to music.  The one thing I do more than anything else is go to the movies !  I am a movie buff.  Long before I became a movie producer, I loved going to the movie theater on Friday mornings and watching the latest film out before everyone else gets off work and crowds the theater !

What is something new you have learned this year?

I learned that life is precious and we have not a moment to waste.  Do everything you have dared to dream NOW and not put off for later. My mom, godmother, and best friend’s mom all have cancer.  One of my close friends just lost her 15 year old son and grandmother the same night a week ago.  No days are promised to us, so LIVE NOW !  I get that lesson LOUD and CLEAR !

If you could travel to one place, where would it be?

The one place I am saving is a trip to Australia for New Years and while there head over to New Zealand and Fiji.  I was supposed to take this month long trip for my honeymoon, but the wedding was called off.  If I could go anywhere right now, that would be the place I would want to be.

Do you have any pets?

Langston  This is my little Maltipoo, Langston.

What is your favorite “binge” junk food?

Fresh popped popcorn or my supernatural brownies.   Hard toss up there lol

What is your favorite book?

Righteous Dopefiend.  A book I read for a cultural anthropology class….

What is your favorite holiday?

Christmas

My Nominees:

Stephysweetbakes  –  http://stephysweetbakes.com/

AbbyYo –  https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/67515944/

Someday Momma –  https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/62025727/

Spirit Baby Come Home – https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/59264955/

Your Questions:  I’m gonna steal a few of these questions, and add my own. So here are your questions:

What are you hobbies?

What is your favorite vacation spot?

Who has been the most influential person in your life and why?

Where did you grow up?

If you could change one thing about your appearance, what would it be?

Do you have any pets?

What do you usually do on Sundays?

What is your favorite food to cook?  Recipe?

Cant wait to learn more about you

IVF #5 – Stim Day 18 – The 411

ivf 5 - thou shall respect the stim

Today is the 18th day of stims.  I went in this morning for monitoring and blood work.  I have 11 follicles on the right and two on the left according to the technician who did today’s scan.  I have not logged into the patient portal as of yet to read the follicular report, so I am just regurgitating what was told to me this morning.

I did my morning injections of Ganirelix, Lovenox (which is causing to me to bleed from the little scabs on my tummy where I have been injecting the past 18 days) and the Neupogen.  I took my synthroid today, which I have been taking every 2-3 days because my TSH plummets when I take it daily and I also took the prednisone, prenatal vitamin and Claritin.

This evening, I will take my vitamin d emulsion and inject the Menopur and Follistim.  I will also take the second dosage of Prednisone.

So far, I do not have that overly full ovary feel that I am used to having.  By now, on the other protocol, I would have had a hard time sitting up straight by now.  My nurse said my largest follicle is 17 mm so I have a little ways to go.  I am scheduled to trigger on Thursday and my retrieval will be on Saturday morning.  I assume that my transfer will be on Tuesday or Wednesday.  I am not doing a five day transfer, but a three.  I want to get back and spend Mother’s Day with my mom.

ivf 5 - stim day 18 scan

I am relieved that my uncle is going to come get my grandmother the day before I leave for New York and keep her until I return.  My mom started radiation this week (tomorrow is the 1st actual radiation as today was just practice) and I was worried about how the radiation will affect her.  My grandmother is a sneaky little thing and if left unattended (while my mom is asleep) she will plunder throughout the house or do things she knows she is not supposed to do, like feed her dog my $23 pot roast complete with rice and gravy, as my mom caught her doing while I was at the theater on Sunday, lol !

It is akin to having an 83 year old child in the house.  You can not leave your mail or documents lying around unless you want them read.  Alzheimers or dementia causes the elderly to become extremely suspicious.  I am not exactly sure what it is she thinks she is going to find…. It drives me mother crazy and I find it hilarious.  Well, I found her antics funny until she fed that damned dog my pot roast !  I made the pot roast for myself and got a really good cut.  I gave my dog and her dog what was left over on my plate that I had as an early lunch, so I guess in her mind that translated to FEED THE DOGS POT ROAST !  When my mom came into the kitchen, my grandmom was preparing a plate for her dog and almost jumped out of her skin when she got “caught”.  She knew I was gone because she can see me pull out of the garage and out of the driveway from her room.  I think she assumed my mom was with me and she was at home alone lol.   We have cameras up all over the house so even when away, we can see what she is doing.

I am excited to report that tomorrow is the first day of filming for my cooking show. I got my final SAG documents today and I faxed them my taft hartley paperwork so that I can get my SAG AFTRA card.  I got a cute grey and white pj set to cook in.  I only wish my make up artist were here to beat my face, but for a cooking show, I can pretty much handle a simple make up job.   I can not wait for you guys to see my logo !   🙂

Have a great evening ~

Versatile Blogger Award For Recipes !

versatile-bloggerI am humbled and honored to again be nominated for a blogger’s award, this time for the recipes I post.  The Versatile Blogger Award !  I must thank Steffysweetbakes.  Her blog is:  http://www.stephysweetbakes.com

The Versatile Blogger Award rules!

1.  Thank the person who gave you this award. That’s common courtesy.

2.  Include a link to their blog. That’s also common courtesy — if you can figure out how to do it.

3.  Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly. (I would add, pick blogs or bloggers that are excellent!)

4.  Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link back to  the post on your site announcing their nomination.

5.  Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

That’s the rules for each nominee lol.

The 15 bloggers that I have recently discovered or follow are:

Steffysweetbakes

Cooking With A Wallflower

Cooking Without Limits

Lady Melady : My Castle, My Food

thisabundantlifestephanie

rachelmankowitz

kelzbelzphotography

amorebeyoutifulyou

valerieholmesauthor

Edge Of Humanity Magazine

Goan Imports

Compartiendo mi Cocina

julieann081.wordpress.com

Meet The Hopefuls

The 15 bloggers I nominate are the same listed above ! I hope they all participate !!

Seven Things About Myself ~

1.  My middle name is Renèe

2.  I just developed a new cooking show entitled “Valerie The Pajama Chef” which I will launch of YouTube.

3.  I am a control freak

4.  I find myself only attracted to European, Asian, or White men these days.  Can someone ship me Scott Foley?

5.  My daughter that I lost last June was named Harper Jean (my mom’s middle name)

6.  I was engaged to a man that I was not in love with because I wanted to get married and have babies (so sad)

7.  I love to cook, bake and create recipes

IVF # 5 – Stim Day 17 – The 411

ivf 5 - stimmy day

Today is stim day 17 of my fifth stim cycle !!  WOW !! That is a long time… 28 days of being on some type of hormone, developing and cultivating follicle and eggs and still three more days of injections to go at least before we can pull these bad boys out !  I just hope my babies do not come out looking like they are Benjamin Button because I have been making the eggs so long LOL.

This morning, I did my injections of Ganirelix, Lovenox, and Neupogen.  I took 20 mg of Prednisone and one prenatal vitamin.  I later took the optimized folate and a Claritin.   The vitamin d emulsion, I take with dinner and then in the evening around 6pm, I inject the Follistim and Menopur.

I decided to do a me’date day and I took me to the movies.  A friend of mine, Terrell Tilford, is starring in the new film, Blackbird, so I went to the Arclight Theater in Bethesda to see it.  Nice theater !  I love the fact that theaters have full bars in them now.  I of course indulged in a glass of Moscato and a little bucket of popcorn with butter.   I won’t be able to drink for the next year or two so, hey.. enjoying it while I can !

I just whipped up some vanilla bean butter cupcakes the other night so I finally got around to making browned butter frosting to top them.  Saturday morning at 1 am, I was restless and craving sweets, so I came down into the kitchen and whipped up cupcakes.  I ate one and went back upstairs and climbed in the bed !

I am going to spend the rest of the evening writing my book. I am finally getting somewhere with it.I will be glad when I have all the chapters outlined an underway.  Then I will work on figuring out which recipes I will put in the book at the end.  I am simultaneously working on another cookbook.  I am going to create a second edition of my first best selling cookbook and renaming it.

I have a crazy week ahead !  My mom starts radiation tomorrow a few hours after my monitoring appointment.  I have to come back in and pack and box up the clothes and things I am shipping to Albany and get Fedex to pick it up along with the frozen waffles and pancakes I put up to ship to friends in California.  I am actually glad that I am shipping my things to the hotel so that I do not have to lug a suitcase around New York City on Thursday prior to hopping on a train to Albany that afternoon.  I will not get into Albany until around 7pm on Thursday and will have to report to the clinic at 8 am, if all goes as planned.  On Tuesday, we will be filming the first episode of Valerie The Pajama Chef, my cooking show.  I have to pick out some new pjs tomorrow at the mall for the shoot…  I am nervous and excited at the same time !  Wednesday, I have monitoring and then I am leaving for New York on Thursday and will leave from the city for a week in Albany.  Busy week indeed !

Have a great night everyone !!

Gluten Free Angel Food Cake – Recipe

Gluten Free Angel Food Cake

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup King Arthur Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour or ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons brown rice flour blend
  • 3/4 cup superfine sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups egg whites (10 to 11 large eggs, separated, yolks discarded or reserved for another use)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons Baker’s Special Sugar** or superfine sugar
  • **Can you substitute regular granulated sugar? Yes; it’ll take much longer for the egg whites to attain their require volume, and the cake’s texture won’t be as fine.

Directions:

1) Preheat the oven to 350°F and place the oven rack in its lowest position.

2) Whisk together and then sift the flour, cornstarch, and 3/4 cup sugar. Set aside.

3) In a large, clean (grease-free) mixing bowl, beat together the egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar until foamy.

4) Add the flavorings. Gradually increase the speed of the mixer and continue beating until the egg whites have increased in volume, and thickened.

5) Gradually beat in the 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar, a bit at a time, until the meringue holds soft peaks.

6) Gently fold in the sifted flour/sugar blend ¼ cup at a time, just until incorporated.

7) Spoon the batter into an ungreased 10″ round angel food pan. Gently tap the pan on the counter to settle the batter and remove any large air bubbles.

8) Bake the cake until it’s a deep golden brown, and the top springs back when pressed lightly, about 45 minutes.

9) Remove the cake from the oven and invert the pan onto the neck of a heatproof bottle or funnel, to suspend the cake upside down as it sets and cools, about 2 hours.

10) Remove the cake from the pan by running a thin spatula or knife around the edges of the pan, and turning the cake out onto a plate.

11) Cut the cake with a serrated knife or angel food cake comb. If it’s difficult to cut, wet the knife and wipe it clean between slices.

12) Serve with whipped cream and fruit. Wrap any leftovers airtight, and store at room temperature.

Yield: one 10″ cake, about 12 to 16 servings.

*****

The following make-at-home blend, featuring stabilized brown rice flour, works pretty well when substituted; and it tastes better than a blend using regular brown rice flour.

Whisk together 6 cups (28 1/2 ounces) King Arthur stabilized brown rice flour; 2 cups (10 3/4 ounces) potato starch; and 1 cup (4 ounces) tapioca flour or tapioca starch. Store airtight at room temperature. Note: You can substitute white rice flour for the brown rice flour if you like; it’ll make your baked goods grittier (unless you manage to find a finely ground version).

Daffodil Cake: Make the cake batter as directed above, reserving 5 of the egg yolks. In a separate bowl, beat the yolks until light yellow and thick, about 3 minutes. Add 2 tablespoons Baker’s Special or superfine sugar, and beat for 2 minutes. Fold in 2 teaspoons lemon zest.

Fold the yolk mixture into half the white batter. Spoon the white and yellow batters alternately into the pan. Gently pass a thin spatula or knife through the batter in the pan to create a marbled effect. Bake as directed above. Serve with lemon curd and whipped cream.