Thursday, September 30, 2010

Our New Crib Is....!

I think everyone guessed correctly! I must be more transparent than I thought! I'm not in love with it yet, but I'm sure once it is here I'll be happy.

Remember how I was going to be a lion on the phone? Ferocious and aggressive? Well my roaring was more of a small pitiful whimper. I cried. Embarrassing to admit but it's true. I actually cried on the phone. Thankfully the man helping me was very nice and had two children and a foster son at home so he said he understood completely. I'm still a little red faced to have cried to some stranger. Yes, this poor guy had to listen to me explain our longing to be parents and how our adoption agency went bankrupt last year and it's been bad news ever since. I would be even more embarrassed had he known I was still in my pajamas lying in bed after rehearsing my fearless speech and customer demands to three rather confused cats. Wimped out doesn't begin to cover it! Although the cookie dough I'm currently inhaling is making me feel a little better.

We are getting a refund as well for shipping, tax, and surcharges. With this refund I am now ordering the shag rug and lamb. The crib we want is on back order (naturally), so it won't be here until the end of October. I am not keen to look at my dream crib for that long, so I think I'll be closing the door for now. My dear husband admitted that as it is he winches every time he walks by the room. I'm sure imagine clients will relate when I say, remember how we were gong to having 10 referrals a month by now? Seems a lifetime ago. The good news is I'm going to have fun decorating the nursery with the new crib! I love to design so this will be a fun challenge. I'm trying not to think of the fact I will now have had two cribs and no baby. I think I'm going to make some more cookie dough.

I know this will pass and had the timing not been during a month where we seem to be going nowhere in our adoption this might not have stung so bad. During a month with ten referrals maybe it would roll off me a little easier. Or a month with any referrals to be honest. Hopefully next month is chalked full of good news and this crib will seem like a silly little memory in the face of a bright future!

Thank you everyone for your input and support! You all made this so much easier. Also thank you for all your ideas and suggestions. I sincerely appreciated them!!

Here's to October blowing our socks off with referrals, court dates, and visas!!


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Breaking The Law Canadian Style

I have been harboring an illegal crib for months it seems. After some vague responses from various employees I was finally told the clear and cut truth about my crib. This crib is not being recalled, however my crib is. My little bit of heaven in our nursery somehow made it through the system and into this country despite canopy cribs being banned by Health Canada. My crib may be the single most rebellious thing I have ever done. I sorta wish I would have known sooner so I could really revel in the naughtiness of it all.

I was laughing hysterically when they told me my crib was the only recall. I mean, come on! Truly this is hilarious. Hilarious with a small side of tears. One recall and it happens to be mine? Ah, if I wasn't so in love with it I would still be on the floor giggling.

I was very nice to both people I spoke to and while I strongly believe in manners, I'm sort of thinking I need to try my luck and see if I can at least get a baby bumper out of the deal. I'm horrible at bargaining or being a disgruntled customer but I may give it a whirl. I'm actually a pretty big wuss at heart, but damn I think they can throw in a little something extra for the headache. I would even settle for the little lamb rug I've been waiting to order. The crib I'm leaning towards will require a new bumper actually so it's not a crazy request. They phone again tomorrow so we'll see! I'm planning to be all "balls to the wall" as the say. Which on me translates to a lot of ahem- if it's not too much trouble- I'm sorry for asking. In the end I'll probably be apologizing to them for ordering the illegal crib in the first place!

My three top choices are above and I'll give you a hint at my favourite ; Neither my mom or Doug particularly love it. Doug is coming around though since we've looked at similiar photos in context of a vintage nursery. Any guesses? Sadly it's likely the one you like the least!

Happy Hump Day!! J xx

Images form Restoration Hardware Baby & Child

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Open Shelves & Honest Thoughts

I love open shelves! I begged Doug to knock down all our shelving and just have open shelves but he gently reminded me that practicality is also important in a kitchen. I sometimes forget our kitchen is roughly the size of a bathroom just with a slightly bigger sink. In our next home though if our kitchen is bigger I'm going for it! Plus it inspires diligent home organization. The ones above are my absolute favourites!! I want to spend the day baking in all of these kitchen. Today I'm attempting my first loaf of french bread in mine! I've never made french bread before but my kitchen is begging for the opportunity!

I also want to make a quick comment about my blog... Yesterday I received a rather unpleasant comment that has since been removed and while I will not respond to it specifically I do want to make it clear I write this blog for me. This is a blog about infertility and adoption as told through someone both adopted and adopting. I haven't promised anyone a rose garden and if I want to vent about all the crap our agency has gone through, or our crib being recalled, or even that scene in Julie and Julia where Meryl Streep breaks down after learning her sister is pregnant (makes me cry everytime!) I will. This is how I cope and if it upsets you please don't read it. Also keep in mind the very sweet man I married who is in this with me. Mr. La Belle Vie is also struggling through the setbacks and he doesn't need to read comments that belittle his feelings any more than I do. This is our journey, and I implore anyone who feels either uncomfortable reading it, or that they can cope better than us to absolutely start their own blog! This one is mine though and it will continue to be a self indulgent, emotional little whirl wind that is all me... The power of having your own blog is quite a rush let me tell you!

Have a great day! Jxx

images from

Monday, September 27, 2010

It's My Blog & I'll Cry If I Want To.

Goodbye My Love

I love my crib. Ordering my crib had me floating on air for days. When my crib arrived and they set it up for me I was beside myself with enthusiasm. This was my dream crib and I was smitten with the idea it would soon be filled.

After a year of constant set backs and trying to put myself back into the land of the living this one has throw me for a huge unpleasant loop. My crib has been recalled. This feels so fucking ominous. I was just about ready to face the fact it may be another year until we see a referral, let alone bring home our child and then this happens. The thing is, as someone in love with interior design doing the nursery has been a highlight for me. Ordering our crib was just about the best thing to happen to me all year. I'm a total head case about this at the moment. I refuse to wait and keep our room empty (good Lord my heart cringes at the idea of that again) and while I know I can probably find a new four poster crib I don't want to. I want to throw a tantrum of epic proportions and scream "Enough already!!!!" I'm tired. I'm exhausted. Please don't take the one thing that has made this year bearable. Please don't.

None the less, protests or no protests, they are coming to take my crib and I will need to decide on a new one. I'm going to go sit in my nursery and have a good cry, and maybe tomorrow I can pick myself up once again and at least pretend for now my heart isn't in pieces about this. Funny the things that can break you...

Friday, September 24, 2010

This Little Light of Mine

Welcome to my very own public service announcement. If you have pets, Get insurance. We have three cats and they are all insured. Each one costs between $18-25 per month, this is dependent on their age when we adopted them. We are covered for 80% of their medical bills. The maximum allotted for each is so high I don't expect we could ever come close to hitting the limit. Circumstances where we would be hugely in the hole for surgeries and medication our insurance has saved us. Yesterday we learned our little pink nosed wonder needs dental surgery which will cost approximately $1200. Once again I was reminded how much insurance gives us peace of mind. Our highest bill to date has been $3000, and that was for a mere three days in the hospital. While our cat was very sick, we were not facing weeks in care, or even the high costs of medication many do. Vet bills are expensive even for short stays and that is what makes it important to consider all of these costs when deciding to share your home with these beautiful creatures. As they get older vet bills will get more expensive and it is a huge comfort knowing whatever they need, with insurance we will be able to afford it. We have three lives that depend on us and this honestly is something I think should be mandatory. If you have pets, please look into getting insurance. They deserve the same respect you would give the other members in your family in terms of medical care. Please remember the responsibility you take on when you adopt an animal. They deserve the same love and consideration they give you.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!! J xx

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Date Night With Someone Special

Saturday night I had the good fortune to spend some long over due quality time with an intelligent, funny, beautiful, and most of all modest woman named me. I mean Jessa. What I mean to say is I'm referring to myself. I may have been playing it a little loose with the word intelligent.

I spent the entire evening wining and dining myself. I should specify the wining involved drinking half a glass of wine. Actually, it wasn't even wine it was a wine cooler. I'm not much of a drinker, but somehow my usual milkshake just didn't seem appropriate. I like wine glasses though. I drink water from one all day long just for the fact it seems a bit more eventful.

The thing about date night with yourself is it is not the same as a spa day or a slumber party with yourself. Wow, it just occurred to me I'm a bit of a loner. Either that or I like myself a little too much. Moving on though, the important thing about date night is to treat it like a date. This means getting dressed up, making or going out for a nice meal, and spending time savoring the conversation. You may be surprised by what finds it's way into your head as you treat yourself to decadence. Date night is a chance to appreciate yourself. We often seek appreciation and love from others without expecting the same amount of support from ourselves. I think it's imperative to enjoy our own company and our own space. More than just even enjoying it, to make a point of celebrating it.

I felt a little more grounded and a little more at peace with myself after spending some time nurturing my body and soul. I should also divulge that cooking in my new kitchen has become the high point of every day. I may have to open a bakery with all the bread and pastry I have on the go!

Lots of love, Jessa xx

Monday, September 20, 2010

My Bell Jar : Depression Confession

I contemplated even writing today given what a dreadful mood I am in. Over the weekend I had imagined myself quite over the sadness and frustration of the last adoption update. I enjoyed some lovely quality time with myself which I will share later this week, but this morning I am back in the bell jar. I realize I'm using this metaphor rather poorly as one can not escape the bell jar, so perhaps I only imagined myself outside of it. The Bell Jar is a book about the mental decline of a woman, and it is to signify a place of no escape where nothing ever changes. While I'm aware adoption is not a mental illness I relate to feeling trapped in a place of no change and no escape. I can not bear the thought of another year or two for a referral. I simply can't.

My deepest impulse is to run away. I want to escape all of this. I wish for anonymity. I don't want to be around anything that reminds me of this journey. My family, my friends, my house, this blog, myself. In my hardest moments I wish to erase the last 6 years from my life. I find it tedious to continue answering questions about our adoption, I find it extraordinarily painful to graciously congratulate others on their pregnancies. I'm rather exhausted with it all and I am painfully aware of it's continued existence in my life. I feel like this process has spread like mold and is infecting all aspects of it most importantly myself. I feel dirty with the weight of uncertainty. I also feel like a fool. I have trusted so much in this process and I feel ridiculous with the degree in which I have handed over my hopes and dreams to unstable bureaucracy.

The worst part is I don't wish to be handed hope. Nor do I wish to be given the same pessimism I am currently exhibiting. There is nothing I wish to hear. Nothing. How drab is that? I'm sitting here miserable,in front of a roaring fire, beside a sleeping cat, and I feel completely uninspired to be talked out of this melancholy, or even to be joined in my misery. That is the conundrum of my bell jar I suppose.

They say time heals all wounds, but time is my wound.

I felt myself melting into the shadows like the negative of a person I’d never seen before in my life. ~ The Bell Jar

Friday, September 17, 2010

Kitchen Reno Complete!!!!!

We are finished for now and while there were a few snags here and there, I'm pretty happy with the outcome. New cabinet doors did not happen. Apparently none of ours are the same size, and even more surprising is not one of them is a standard size. God bless random condo development construction. Sheesh.

However, I am very happy with our new digs! We sort of took a big kitchen idea and put it in our wee one, and I think it works. I love our sink and counters, and the new cabinet handles make me smile. I wanted a vintage feels with some modern elements. The faucet and handles were chosen with that in mind. I still need to properly sew the sink curtain (ie. wait for my Mom to visit), but other that that I'm feeling very content about the whole thing. It was a ton of fun, and a whole lot of work! We rarely got ourselves in a snit which I think amazed us both. I look forward to spending the day baking up a storm in our new kitchen!!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone, and thank you all for your patience in waiting for us to finish!


Thursday, September 16, 2010


Grouting sadly was a bigger job than we thought and the new handles are not on yet. I apologize for there being no new photos today.

Instead there is just a fairly miserable women waiting for a referral and realizing it may be even longer than I had thought. Today's update while having many good points left me feeling cold. I sort of thought waiting two years for our referral from the time our dossier arrived in Ethiopia was completely crazy. However, now realizing even two and half years may not be realistic has put a dagger in my heart. The thought it will be another year before our child is home and seven from the time we started trying to build a family is too much for me today.

I am so sad...

ps. If one person says when the time is right or any such thing I will blow a fuse. I don't believe in divine timing and at the moment I don't have enough energy or grace to even nod my head and grit my teeth. I am angry and frustrated.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Renovation Tips By a Clueless Carpenter

What could possibly go wrong?

Top Ten Reno Tips:

1. Send your husband to the driving range so you finally get a chance to play with the power tools.

2. Crank up the heavy metal. Power drills and angry music should always go together.

3. Wear something your feel good in. Don't they say confidence is the most important thing when it comes to building a kitchen?

4. Relax. If it doesn't go as planned you can always eat take out for the rest of your life. Besides Pizza has vegetables on it so it's totally healthy.

5. Keep the phone near by in case you need to phone your husband to brag about the killer job you are doing, or 911.

6. Just because you may have accidentally drilled a few holes in the wall doesn't mean you should give up. Weren't you thinking about knocking that wall down any ways?

7. E-mail your husband photo's of you drilling here and there and everywhere and then attach the photo below.

Good news, I installed the sink!! I'm not sure why the wall came down, but doesn't the sink look great?

9. Walk around your condo building looking all tired and sweaty so they think you're doing all the work. It'll feel good being praised.

10. If all else fails, break open your piggy bank and phone a contractor to come finish the job quickly. Then when your husband comes home to an immaculate new kitchen shrug your shoulders and say "What? Like this is hard or something?"


Image from

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Goodbye Summer Lovin'

We have officially been thrust into fall. Not only is the sunshine gone, but my house has been turned into renovation chaos! Have I mentioned before how much I love living in disorder? Egad!

I am sad to see the season go, but excited to see what the fall and winter brings. Hopefully a referral! Imagine has signed on a new orphanage and will be exclusive with them. This is excellent news and hopefully we see an increase in monthly referrals! This may be unrealistic thinking, but I'm still holding out hope that we'll have news before Christmas.

We finally finished our medicals AGAIN (this is the 3rd time we've done them!). We get fingerprinted tomorrow and then everything is ready to go. I'm not as sad as I thought I would be to be doing this again. I'm still furious about the fees, and I'm not thrilled that we are 3.5 years and no referral, but I'm oddly content. I must be maturing... Lets just keep that between us.

This week I'll be trying to keep my husband from losing his patience (totally too late), and my kitchen from turning into a hazard zone (also way too late). Wish us luck in completing our kitchen by 2011 (yes, this is supposed to be a week reno). I wonder what will come first, our referral or a beautiful functioning kitchen? That's a stumper.

Have a great week, and if you crave some summer lovin' I recommend listening to She & Him to perk up your mood and warm up your soul.

J xx

Images from :

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Neverending Story Of My Life

A couple nights ago my good friend Adrian and I went to watch The Neverending Story at the outdoor movie. Neither of us had seen it in years, and it made for a highly compelling watch. The part that struck me the most was Atreyu and the Sphinxes. In order to pass the Sphinxes (which by the way are one of the coolest creatures ever) he had to have belief in himself. No amount of armor would prevent the Sphinxes from seeing self doubt, and if this were to happen he would be annihilated. Part two of his journey was to face his true self in the mirror which was said to often send grown men into hysterics. Both these challenges got me questioning myself. If my life depended on my self worth and self awareness would I survive?

The last few years have been rather trying. Trying may be the perfect word for it, because I feel my life has involved a great deal of effort in the most profound of ways. Infertility, adoption, reunion, and the the every day stresses of school, work, and marriage have forced me to try harder. I don't think my self confidence has ever before been this powerful, because at the end of the day I know exactly what I am made of.

Being confident however is not the same as facing our true selves in the mirror. I like to think I know myself well or at least well enough, but the idea of facing all of me is still a bit terrifying. If I was to face my demons with brutal honesty I would see a self involved, vain, shallow, frivolous, impatient, manipulative, controlling,judgmental, flirtatious, deceitful, selfish, competitive, gossipy, and arrogant woman. That's a small list of a much larger list of my glaringly obvious imperfections. Which reminds me I'm also a perfectionist!

I think if I were to look in that mirror I'd closely resemble Tim Burton's Corpse Bride. I think an honest look at myself would show that I'm really only half there and half presentable. I may not have a charming maggot living in my eye socket, but I've got time to work on that.

I think I'm both dark and creepy, and light and airy. I'm a dreamer and a nightmare, and depending on the day can be exceedingly mature, or a two year old in big girl pants. To be completely truthful I see myself as fairly nuts. I can't fix it if I don't own it though, so knowing is half the battle. I don't believe myself to be evil (although in the right circumstance I would probably scare the pants off you), but I have much room for improvement. I have some serious years of work ahead of me, but the good news is I'm not afraid of hard work. Ok, that's not exactly true, I can be extremely lazy at times.

So what is the point of seeing ourselves naked, in the harsh light of truth? I see it as integral to how I conduct myself. I know I have many wonderful qualities as well, but I'll never become a better person if I live with falsehood. I want to do better. I want to be the kind of person who can not only face themselves, but become a better person because of it. I want to be accountable for my own happiness and fulfillment, and in order to that I need to accept and illuminate every hidden and salient trait within me. I don't want to be content just knowing myself, I want to invent myself. Unlike Atreyu, my life may not depend on my ability to look myself in the mirror with warts, maggots, shadows, cracks and all, but my quality of life certainly does. I want my greatest artistic achievement to be an inspired life, and each day to reflect a better version of myself. I may be far from the woman I hope to end up as, but I'm a self involved, vain, shallow, frivolous, impatient, manipulative, controlling,judgmental, flirtatious, deceitful, selfish, competitive, gossipy, arrogant, perfectionist woman who's trying.

“Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” George Bernard Shaw

Lots of love,

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Effortless Fashion : The Miss J. Alba Issue

I've yet to cover celebrity fashion because they often appear so contrived and uninspired. There are a few celebrities I regularly check in on though who time and time again continually hit the mark. I wouldn't call myself fashion obsessed, (but my husband might!). I was raised by a woman who always looked presentable and who rarely bought new clothes, so I don't believe it costs a lot of money to be stylish. I'm VERY price conscious. I love looking for inspiration from magazines, tv shows, movies, and runways, and then searching out my own cheap version. It might not be quite as stunning as the original, but I find I can tailor it be more me and that is invaluable.

This celebrity has an effortless style I adore. Granted, I suspect you could throw a burlap sack on her with some tar and feathers and she'd still look unbelievable! I find she always looks appropriate, young, and sophisticated. Jessica Alba, you are as stylish and you are gorgeous!


images from