{pretty, happy, funny, real} - Jumping into August

I cannot believe it is August already. In {pretty, happy, funny, real} style from Like Mother, Like Daughter, here's a little about the month so far.

{pretty}

We took a mini-vacation last weekend to Richmond, Virginia. My penchant for reading reviews online led us to interesting areas, one of which featured this unique wall. With boards across the windows and weeds taking over, the oddly shaped building was clearly not in use. We could not help wondering who took the time to create such a beautiful design and for what purpose. 

 Building on Summit Avenue in Richmond, Virginia.

Building on Summit Avenue in Richmond, Virginia.

{happy}

In our effort to make fitness a hobby, we have started signing up for races. Our first 5k together was last weekend. I cannot say my performance was stellar, but the experience was a good start to our new racing routine. Next up, a four-miler in September.

 5k finishers!

5k finishers!

{funny}

This morning, I took on a daunting task: giving the schnoodle a haircut. Dog grooming can take quite a chunk out of the budget, so I decided to try it myself. With a squirmy and energetic puppy like Louie, failure and catastrophe were very real potential outcomes. After more than an hour of trimming and treating, Louie the Lion-Tailed emerged. The picture does not do the tufted tail justice. Haha. The tuft happened accidentally, but was too entertaining to remove. Sorry, Louie. 

 Louie the Lion-Tailed

Louie the Lion-Tailed

{real}

I said goodbye to prenatal vitamins this week. When you are in that phase of life where "prenatal" could be just around the corner, the appropriate vitamins are a good idea. Been there, done that, don't need to see the vitamins in my cupboard. Goodbye, extra infertility reminder. Hello, standard woman vitamins.

Prenatal Vitamins

Hello. My Name is Davy, and I Am a Bit of a Mess.

It has been a rough several weeks. Before infertility, I rarely cried. During infertility, "rare" would not be the appropriate word. Recently, "daily" would be more accurate. I'm kind of a mess at least once a day. Last night, I had reached my limit and told my husband I wanted to throw things. Don't worry, I didn't actually throw anything. I felt so angry and like I could just sob for a long time. Why? I can't quite put my finger on it. Part of it might be that it's another baby season, with baby news coming from every direction (I seriously need to step away from Facebook). Part of it might be selfishness, with my plans getting thwarted at every turn. Part of it might be recognizing that my passions do not have to be the same as my husband's, but we have to figure out how to proceed together. Part of it might be feeling so stuck in this suffocating in-between and not feeling ready to not have a next step. Much of it is failing to trust that God is good, and He is working everything out for our good and His glory. Yeah. All those things together make me a bit of a mess.

[In full disclosure, I'm not a mess ALL THE TIME. It's more of an underlying messiness that bubbles up daily. I can still hold a fairly normal conversation, I think. Actually, I have noticed a tendency to tell the twenty-minute version of our foster care experience with anyone who asks a semi-related question. Hmm. I'm still the same-old Davy, just with a more-frequently quivering lip.]

You may have heard the phrase "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." I've been so blech lately that I haven't known what to say to the blogosphere. A friend told me she is waiting for the rest of the Childlessness: Take Two series, so I will get to that soon. 

In the meantime, I have been thinking of this graphic I made for the "Infertility Feels Like" post. 

It's way too clean and clear, so I fixed it up a bit.

Infertility Exits Messy - 1024 x 512.png

That's better. Infertility is not straightforward; it is not clean, next steps are not clear, and sometimes you are stopped in your tracks. The road is broken and bumpy, full of potholes, floods, and brokenness. People on that road are bound to be a bit of a mess. 

Hello. My name is Davy, and I am a bit of a mess.

Take 2, Plan 2: Restore a Love of Reading

My aching body tells me that the plan to make fitness a hobby is underway. I have already learned that the "just go running" would not be enough motivation for me. Two half-mile runs in a week is not very impressive. What IS impressive is that Hubby and I have both met the 10,000 step goal twice already! If 10,000 steps does not seem like a lot, I dare you to track your steps for a day. I would be surprised if you naturally get more than 5,000. We have only hit the 10,000 mark by going on LONG walks in the evening. The gadget on my wrist has been a great motivation and constant reminder to keep moving.

Anyway, this post is supposed to be about the second plan for this phase of childlessness: restore a love of reading. How will we do that? Well, my strategy is to read what I want to read. I often get bogged down in books that are good for me. If I am not in the mood for the good-for-me book that I should be reading, I tend to skip reading all together. If I can get back to reading just for the fun of it, maybe the good-for-me books will become more appealing. 

So, what am I reading? Well, let me just tell you... my coffee table is full of books right now. I finished Freakonomics last week, then absolutely devoured The Scarlet Pimpernel over the weekend [SO GOOD!]. I have a few good-for-me books that are also interesting enough to pick up: Letters to a Birmingham Jail and Extravagant Grace: God's Glory Displayed in Our Weakness. The pile on my coffee table is so diverse and exciting, I haven't decided what to pick up next. Here's the list and why:

  • Girl Underwater, by Claire Kells - Because a friend said that she read it in one breath.
  • The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini - Because it was on my Goodreads list, so somebody must have told me something good about it once.
  • The Westing Game, by Ellen Raskin - Because I remember my sister LOVING that book at one point.
  • Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë - Because I should have read it already.
  • Les Misérables, by Victor Hugo - Because it's a classic and my sister loves it. I accidentally bought the abridged version, which seems like a merciful accident.
  • Anne of Green Gables, by L.M. Montgomery - Because I have started it three times.
  • Leave it to Psmith, by P.G. Wodehouse - Because it's supposed to be the best.

Ah, I'm excited to get back to reading. Stay tuned for Plan 3: Get Out of Town. 

Note: This post is entirely my own. I was not asked or paid to recommend products. However, I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.