Thursday, July 18, 2013

adoption update??

we are still adopting again.

i haven't written much about it, namely because there's not much to say. after deciding to pursue another adoption, we were in a holding pattern for a bit waiting to make sure one aspect of the children's circumstances wouldn't prevent them from being adoptable. after that issue got cleared up, i found out that i had another ovarian cyst. we went through all the emotions of last time where we had to wonder if i was going to get a cancer diagnosis (it's scary to find out you've got something abnormal growing anywhere in your body, but especially on your ovary). after meeting with a gynecological oncologist, we felt more confident that the cyst was benign, but we didn't get confirmation until after surgery last week. thankfully, the cyst was nowhere near as large as last time, so my ovary was preserved. the doctor told me i'm at a slightly increased risk to get another one of these cysts, but there's no correlation between the cysts and an increased risk of ovarian cancer.

honestly, a second cyst and a second surgery really put me in a funk in terms of "family planning." we knew we wanted to continue on with adoption, but suddenly, pregnancy seemed like an urgent thing. i knew it would be CRAZY around here if we transitioned three new kids to our family -- a newborn, an adopted toddler, and an adopted preschooler -- all within a short time of each other. i finally had to realize that God was sovereign over all of this -- that he knew when i met our children in uganda that i would face another surgery and the possibility of subsequent cysts after that (the doctor said a third cyst would merit a discussion about removing my ovary). 

despite longing to experience pregnancy and knowing what it's like to have a baby from day one, i've always believed that the two children i already have (and the two who are waiting for us in uganda) are my children. there's not a hole in my heart that can only be filled by a biological child, and i don't feel like any less of a mother for not having birthed my children. so instead of making the decision to adopt AND get pregnant (which, at least for me, would have been a decision driven mostly by fear), we are continuing on with our adoption and will come back to the possibility of pregnancy later. as my husband so wisely (and gently) said to me, our calling to adopt didn't change just because the circumstances of our life and the plans we might have had for ourselves did.

so that's a little of my heart on all of this. once i get over the sheer exhaustion surgery has caused me, i'm going to get back to the grind of adoption paperwork. i'm hoping we'll start seeing some real forward motion once we get started on our home study.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

stitch fix 2

i got my second stitch fix yesterday! as i'm currently five days post surgery for another ovarian cyst, my body is a little funky (read: bloated and puffy). SO, i think everyone will understand why i chose not to have my picture taken wearing the clothes this time around. i did try everything on, though i pretty much knew what i liked and what i didn't as soon as each piece came out of the box.

first up, this gem.

if this is something you would ever wear, you probably shouldn't read the rest of my commentary. where to begin? this shirt looks like something a rich grandmother would wear for a casual day at the country club. it also looks like a pre-schooler's paint set threw up all over it...way too many primary colors (with the exception of the green background). and despite knowing that green and red are complimentary colors (and do, in some instances, look really good together), i can't take the blunt combo of the bright green and bright red. this shirt was never in a million years a contender anyway, but it's also too big. verdict: send back.

next, this dress.

i liked it out of the box, but i knew it would probably look like a sack on me (and i was right). i even tried it with a skinny belt at the waist to try and give it more definition, but it just didn't look right. i think the stylist was trying to send me something that would be kid-friendly, and the fabric is definitely right on target. i also like that it would be a great dress for all seasons (pair it with sandals in the summer, boots and tights for the fall/winter). but it's way too frumpy on me, not to mention that the red buttons with the navy background/white stripes is a little too patriotic for me. verdict: send back.

third was this shirt.

amazing. nothing too crazy, but also unique in its own way. i loved it out of the box, and i loved it after trying it on. my favorite thing is the pop of aqua at the top (though, since it's sheer up there, i'd have to wear a strapless bra). this is one of those shirts that is fitted where it should be, but also has a little flow at the bottom. i also liked that it's multi-seasonal thanks to the 3/4-length sleeves. BUT i don't really know what bottoms to pair it with other than jeans, which i feel like would be too much dark blue. i'm probably over-thinking this, but i decided, for the price, it wasn't worth it. verdict: send back.

next, this shirt.

i liked this shirt when i took it out of the box, but then it started reminding me of a maternity shirt because of the ruching on the side. it was cute on, but the price tag is...$88. i would never pay that much for a casual shirt like this. verdict: send back.

and lastly, this necklace.

i actually asked not to be sent accessories, but this necklace still made its way into my fix. it's a simple, gold necklace with little leaves on it. i really love it for it's versatility, and the price was very reasonable. verdict: keep it.

overall, this second fix bummed me a little, though i feel like it's going to take a few times for them to really "get" what i like and don't like. since i only kept the necklace, i decided to try one more time before taking a break until fall. we have family pictures coming up next month, so i asked to be sent five dresses. again, in full disclosure, i get a referral credit for anyone who signs up to try stitch fix using my link. so if you're interested in joining the fun (and it really is pretty fun!), go here.

Monday, July 1, 2013

stitch fix review

i'm jumping on the bandwagon of bloggers who are writing about their experiences with stitch fix. after reading about stitch fix on several blogs, i decided to give it a try. while i'm not a super fashion-forward person, i do enjoy clothes and splurging every now and then on something fun. the thing that drew me to stitch fix is that it broadens your access to lots of different clothes, but it also makes shopping easier because someone else is essentially doing it for you. all you have to do to get started is answer several questions about your clothing style (what you like and don't like, what you'd like to incorporate more of in your wardrobe) and your lifestyle (if you're a mom, if you have a specific dress code where you work, if you go to lots of special occasions). when you're ready to get a box of clothes (and after you've filled out your style profile), you pay a $20 styling fee, which counts as a credit towards anything you buy. the box contains five items of clothing (you can dictate in your style profile what you'd like to see in your box. for example, i requested dresses or tops). you have three days to try on the clothes and decide what to keep and what to send back (they include in the box a very convenient, pre-addressed bag for the return items), then you check out on the stitch fix website. you also get a chance at check out to give feedback on the clothing in your box so that the stylists get a better idea of what works for you.

i got my first box on saturday, a couple of days earlier than expected, which was a fun surprise. i immediately opened the box and saw this dress first (please excuse that i decided to pose so awkwardly for this picture. you can't even see the front of the dress because i'm holding hands with myself).

i liked it, though it did occur to me that some might think it looks a little prairie girlish (a la laura ingalls wilder). the crochet back is fun, and i like the subtle, floral pattern. the fabric is also really lightweight and comfy. the problem is, it's way too big on top, and i'm not sure it flatters me. after trying it on several times (including once for my friend, erin), i started to like it less and less (and erin's daughter, MC, was actually pretty disgusted by the crochet). it's also fairly pricey for a dress that i wouldn't just throw on to run errands or play at home with the kids. verdict: send back.

the second thing i pulled out of the box was this shirt.

my first thought was, "ummm, did the stylist see on my profile where i said i'm a mom?" seriously, can't you just see this pretty white shirt getting ruined by grimy kid hands? (no offense to my children) i do own white shirts, but none that seem this delicate. the sheer panel at the top of the shirt makes it necessary to wear a strapless bra, which is a little annoying, but i honestly i'm not totally turned off by the sheer. erin, however, insisted this is a shirt that requires something under it, which, to me, takes away from the look of the whole shirt. but since it's not a kid-friendly shirt (and thus not worth the price for the wear i'd get out of it), i don't have to worry about all that :) verdict: send back.

this shirt was the third item out of the box.

i was pretty indifferent to this shirt when i pulled it out, and i'm not sure why. i like the chevron pattern, but i think this is maybe too bold for me. the shirt fits great, and erin (and MC) really liked it for me. but again, this isn't a shirt that i'd put on any random time, and i didn't like it enough to splurge on it even for a special occasion. verdict: send back.

the fourth item was this shirt.

i recognized it pretty quickly as the same shirt (only in a different color and without some mesh detailing) erin got in her first box. this is not a shirt i'd ever gravitate to in a store, mostly because the colors aren't my normal palate. it's definitely an edgier floral print (sorry it's hard to see the print in the picture). i like the way the shirt looks on me, especially because it finds that very happy place between fitted and flowy. the fabric is also a great balance between silky (which i associate with clothes meant for fancier occasions) and knit (which i think is super casual). the price of this top was very reasonable considering i can get a lot of wear out of it. verdict: keep. (i actually wore it today!)

and lastly, this shirt.

i'm a real sucker for chambray. i love chambray because it can go with almost anything, so the versatility of this shirt is undeniable. but BUMMER, it's too big on me. i kept trying to convince myself it was meant to be a little billowy, but i finally had to listen to jamie and erin and realize that the fit of this shirt doesn't flatter me. i'm hoping that i might get a more fitted chambray shirt in a future box. verdict: send back.

since i didn't go crazy with this first box (and since it's my birthday this month), i went ahead and scheduled another box to arrive in a couple of weeks. i told the stylist that i'd love to see something with mint green in it, because i'm really loving that color these days. i also said i have a grass green skirt that needs a pop of color on top, so maybe i'll get some options for that. in the feedback i left on my first box, i said i'd like to see lower price points and more clothing fitted to my "mom lifestyle" in future boxes.

in full disclosure, i can get a $25 referral credit for anyone who signs up to receive a box using this link. so if this all sounds fun to you, get started and help me out at the same time!