Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Quincy sits vigil...

Quincy sits vigil..., originally uploaded by shellipsm.

These odd teeny tiny flying beetle like things have taken up residence under our stove, and Quincy discovered them a few days ago... well, he has since been sititng vigil by the stove, looking for the tiny playmates that mommies have to smooosh with a paper towel.

We just have to get the super up here to pull out the stove and dishwasher, so we can clean and vacuum and seal up behind there - this is our first "bug" incident in 3 years, so that's not bad, i guess, and at least we have 24 hour surveilance......


Tuesday, August 30, 2005


Vent ahead - WARNING....

We could have a baby next week if it wasn't for the fact that NYC is So (*&&^%^$#%$%#$&^%$*&^()&*(**& hard to work with in terms of adoption!

We got a call form a friend that a baby is due in California, and they WANT it to go to a same sex couple! She calls us, we call our SW, and they call the appropriate people, I send all of our stuff to them via e-mail, and then BAM.

They say that we'd have to live in California for 6-9 months while the adoption finalized.


And then, there are about 5 agencies that are SENDING BABIES TO CANADA for adoption, because there aren't enough black families her ein the states, but some of them won't work with gays and lesbians, and ALL of them won't work with NY.


If we want to adopt internationally, we'd have to LIE and pretend for one of us to be a single mother. We are NOT willing to do that.

We tried for a year and a half with A.R.T. to get pregnant, and it didn't work - WHY IS THIS SO HARD, WHEN THERE ARE SO MANY BABIES IN NEED OF A GOOD HOME!


OK, thanks for letting me vent - ARGH!

Vacation, all I ever wanted...

So since the trip to LA was a bust (albeit, with a few nice days on Narda's roof pool) due ot all of the adoption anxiety we dealt with, we decided that we needed a bonefied, true-AMERICAN vacation!

So this next weekend, we are off to our Nation's capitol, Washington, DC to do some REALLY CHEEZY TOURISTY STUFF, and o visit our friends, Jen & Cait Jen & Cait have stayed TWICE at OUR apartment, so we are thrilled to go visit them, and to see the NEW KITCHEN COUNTERS!

We plan on visiting the Lincoln memorial, the Smithsonian, and the rest, well, we're open to suggestions - ONLY Cheezy Touristy stuff, please! :)

I'm even doing OK with my 'cat-seperation-anxiety' syndrome. I tend to really freak out if I hav eto leave the cats under someone else's care - mostly Cougie, as the others aren't "special-needs" cats, but I'm doing OK, since we're leaving Friday, and back on Monday, it shouldn't be too bad...

Friday, August 26, 2005


I know I haven't written much in a while, and I actually have LOTS to say.

But I work in academia, and the semester starts next week, and I spent most of my life being a produciton stage manger, NOT a university administrator, so I currently owe LOTS of people on my floor LOTS of alcohol and flowers for helping me through the latest budget Excel Spreadshit.

Yes, Excel SpreadSHIT.

I can do basic Excel, but it took 2 people to clean up the attempt I made at simply "plunking in the numbers" to an already existing formula.

OY. Ella, Mark, if you are out there in Blog land...


On the brigher side of things, we've discovered "gay TV" -it's a NEW channel called LOGO - on Time Warner Cable in NYC, it's channel 155. It's WAY cool - Lesbian comics, gay-themed movies, advertising targeted towards a gay audience - I LOVE LOGO!


Tell them thanks, would ya, and watch it. It's some good TV, NOT cheesy.

Saturday, August 20, 2005


Spare room is done!, originally uploaded by shellipsm.

Paininting therapy works.

this is the spare room, or the "eventual kid's room" and I've been painting it for the past week. When all of the furniture is back in place, I'll take pictures with the real camera, but I just had to show off my arts and crafts ability.

I got the color block idea from one of my FAVE HGTV shows, "Design on a dime"

Friday, August 19, 2005

sharin da love

my friend, Stef, the one who played Mrs. Bumble in Oliver a few weeks ago is suffering a miscarraige, after THREE years of infertility, she got her BFP (big fat positive - on a pregnancy test and in a blood test at the doctor's office) from a frozen Embryo Transfer. Her numbers went up and up, and now they are going down and down.

That sucks - please go and share some love her way, she needs it right now.


Love you, Stef. Truly. Sending MUCHO love and hugs and alcohol your way.

Monday, August 15, 2005

what I've learned

I only learned this week, after three years of ttc, how much my friends really DO care. I had stopped telling them about every failed IUI, about every adoption call that fell through, but with this most recent one (we should have been bringing our daughter home today...) - they all came through for me - Why?

Because I asked them to - I sent an e-mail saying that I didn't need to be cheered up, that I just needed them to be there. And they were.

Shocked the shit out of me, to be honest.

I want to simply share that if you ask for what you need, you just might get it...

Thank you.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

she has decided to parent

What more can be said. Her SW called me just now and told me the news.

We'll keep you posted as to the next one.

Friday, August 12, 2005

I hurt for her

the first series of news to make my heart skip a beat and fear the worst...

Nicole, (our faboo Social worker) calls, and says that "yes, they are still planning on following with an adoption plan" but they are ALL very emotional, and there's lots of crying, and they are planning on taking her home Sunday night to have their "one night" with her, and then we go over to their house on Monday morning with our SW and her SW, and if they like us enough and feel comfortable, she will sign her surrender documents.

it's our openess that has drawn her to us, and I pray we all have the strength to get through this together.

I cannot imagine a more terrible time for her, joyous and yet fearful for us.

it's so easy to get caught up in our OWN sturmunddrang, that I can forget just HOW painful it is for a parent to give up a child for adoption. She must be going through soooo many emotions right now, my heart hurts for her.

I'm a mess.

I want what is best for this baby, but we so desperately want to be parents, too.

My hope is that she will continue with the adoption plan, and we'll end up having gained a new family member, in the guise of our child's birth mother.

that is my prayer.

I love my boss

I love my boss! He’s totally fine with finding a sub for me for the 12 week FMLA period. He’s thrilled that I’m even willing to come in for a brief spell every so often, but thinks I should just focus on the baby, and not worry about my job, as indeed, it’s a pretty easy time period during the beginning of school.

ALL of this is contingent on Monday’s outcome…

She gave birth

5 pounds, 5 ounces, healthy baby girl, full head of hair. August 12th.

Odd - the first referral call we got was for a baby born April 12th.


The Birth mother's mother was in the delivery room, and the birth mother's social worker feels confident about her adoption plan, but the birth mother has decided to keep the baby in her hospital room with her.

that spells bonding, which we want her to do, just not so much that she changes her mind....

In theory, she will sign termination papers on Monday.

I love our social worker - she's IN a wedding this weekend, and she has three potential placements ALL THIS WEEKEND. Poor thing, and we've been on the cell with her numerous times today already, as she drives (ok, her husband drives) through the mid town tunnel.

I fly back early, tomorrow night, I get into NY Sunday morning. We shlep off to Jersey city immediately.


We will at least know one way or the other on Monday.

I pray she goes with an adoption plan.

thank you all for your good vibes and energy, I really feel it...

IM names

OK - so I did a STUPID thing - I signed onto my IM service here at the business center where Narda's staying in LA.

LONG story short, I forgot to check and see if the saved box was checked, and alack and alas it was. I went into my computer the next day, and ALL of my names were erased.


sooooooo, kindly send me an IM if you see me on line, and I'll re-add you to my list.



My AIM id is ShelliPSM - it harkens back to my pre-NYU days as a Production Stage Manager, some people were wondering what the psm part was, and some thought it was pms!



she's in labor!

holy shit. Our Social Worker called this morning (Narda's opening was last night, so can you say HANGOVER!)


Will know more when she calls us back later. We may fly home early.

Will keep you posted.

Cross all fingers and say all prayers that she is a healthy baby!


Thursday, August 11, 2005


Waves of nausea fill me, like morning sickness. I sit in “guarded” optimism.

Narda is wanting to talk about it all the time, I’m nervous to even speak about it. I’m afraid it won’t happen.

I’m waiting to have the conversation with my boss about a “possible” leave of absence. I don’t know how it will go, well, I hope.

Narda’s making lists of everything we need, and reading a book about a baby’s growth, week by week. I read the first few weeks, “for educational purposes only.”

Why can’t I let myself feel excitement? I’m afraid to. I want to wait until the last possible minute to jump for joy.

This is the closest we’ve ever become to being parents, and I feel like I’m walking on Karmic eggshells.

I hate feeling like this, I want to give into the joy, instead of the anxiety.

Sunday, August 07, 2005


Friday the 19th at 10am, we meet the birth Mother.


I’m actually MORTE freaked out about work! I sent a letter off to my boss, who was really sweet, and said he’d call me this next week, so we can talk about it all. I’m so ready to do this, but I’m also terrified to not be at work, getting all of the important things done.

Here’s a copy of the letter I sent him…


Some wonderful news has landed our way. We have been chosen by a birth mother to parent her child. She is due with a baby girl on August 28th. We have received a whirlwind of information in a very short amount of time and there is always the chance that she will ultimately choose to parent the child herself. Still, we are thrilled and terribly excited.

I will need to take advantage of the family and medical leave act for 12 weeks beginning early September and then I would return to work full time. I am grateful that this is happening now, as opposed to during the audition period, and I want to talk with you first and figure out how to make this easiest for all of us.

My thought is that I could still come in for the big faculty meeting, orientation, sharings and the like. I could be available by phone, and for emergencies, of course, and could even come in a few hours a week, to do the schedule, the weekly sign out sheets, and audition scheduling. Narda will be teaching full time; however, she is only required to be at school 3 days a week. I’m also open to any ideas and suggestions you may have.

Please feel free to give me a call on my cell phone, as I’m in LA right now, and our dear Ed, from the front desk, will be my date for the Opening Night of Radio Golf. I’m treating this time in LA as a REAL vacation, as G-d willing, it will be our last one for a while.

After the Birth Mother gives birth, there is a 72 hour period of time where she is not allowed to sign termination rights, and therefore, she has the option to change her mind. We are proceeding with the notion that she will continue with her adoption plan, but there is always the chance that she can change her mind. I am telling you first and have not spoken to HR or the benefits office; I wanted us to have a plan of action first.

I hope you are well and I’m sorry that this wondrous and joyous event may make things a bit tough for a few months. I am committed to this job and willing to do whatever I can to make things as easy as possible for everyone involved.

Thanks for listening. I look forward to chatting with you. (I’m here in LA until the 16th of August).

What have some of you done, in terms of work? How did you handle taking the time off? Did you get time off? What was your experience like?

Friday, August 05, 2005

closer still...

OK - So we will probably have a phone conversation with the Birth Mother on Monday the 8th - our SW will let us know later today or Monday morning.

We'll meet her in person on Friday the 19th.

She is due August 28th, but may get induced, we're not sure as to the full part of that.

She picked us on our profile alone, and is being sent our photo album via fed-ex.


I have NO idea what to say to her - our SW will of course, go over things with us, but some general questions weold be helpful.

The only real risk is her own desire to parent. Basically, the way NJ law works, is that the BM is not allowed to sign termination rights until 72 hours have elapsed after birth. But after she signs termination rights, that's it. it's final. We will pay to have the baby stay at the hospital for the extra day or two, as we would not want to bring her home, only to have the BM change her mind a day later. We'll try to be there for the birth, if the BM will allow it, and we'll have to stay in NJ while paperwork is being cleared - which would be for about 5 days or so.

The BM has a name that she has chosen, and we hope to be able to use it as a middle name. We had wanted to use my grandmother's name and Narda's mom's name, but time will tell, and who knows, after we;ve all had conversations, which way things will go.

So it all seems a go. We are still being reserved, but it's hard to when I have to e-mail my boss, the benefits offce and HR to ask questions and confirm FMLA, etc.




not much news, but here's a bit...

Thanks everyone!

Our SW said that she would hate to cut our trip short by us flying home early in the off chance that this doesn't work out, so she said we can meet on the 19th or so after Narda's back form LA, and that we'll "meet" the BM via phone ahead of time! Yeowza!

So our next assignment is a list of questions, and a "rehearsal session" - holy moley.

I'll know more later today....

She also did say that the BM's SW (that's Birth mother's social worker) was TOTALLY convinced that this would "go to plan" - ie: that she'd follow through with an adoption plan.

Cross ALL fingers.

OHHHHHH! AND since the BM is in NJ (that's New Jersey), that as SOON as she signs her "termination" papers, there's NO 30 day waiting period - it's FINAL. Our SW thought that since we live in NY that it might not apply, but she now thinks it still does - OH MY GOSH.

I'm off to google this.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

half a dozen...

OK, so the Birthmother picked another family.

Allow 30 seconds of sadness to wash over you, as it did us.



The Nicole, our FABOO Social Worker tell us about the next "situation" - it's working with another agency, as their agency didn't have enough "culture" - (read "black people") for this one BM. So our agency fed exes over some profiles, and the BM, HER sister AND her mother ALL pick us.


Holy crap.

Baby girl due on August 28th.

BM is 16, an honor student, and NO drug, alcohol or cigarette use. She DID have prenatal care. SHe is African American, and so is the BF.

We have told our SW 100 % YES.

Next step - WE MEET THE BIRTH MOTHER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The BM wants to parent, but realizes that she cannot. The BF is not a legal risk, and the ONLY risk is her own desire to parent, but she does not want to drop out of school, nor does she want to go to a home for PG teens, she wants to remain at home. Her entire family is on board for US.


I might have to fly back early from LA - but that's A-OK by me.

Thank you oh wonderful internet, I'll keep you posted of course.


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

5th time's a charm?

So our SW calls this am, and informs us that Birth Mother #5 has selected us (and also told us that if this one doens't work, that there's another one that's interested). She (SW) said we're popular, and I jokingly said something about never making it past the semi-finals... She did try to reassure us that it WILL happen, which we know it will, but we're just so eager to be parents.

So the situation is, once again, perfect - VERY healthy, smart, intelligent Birth mother, NO drugs or alcohol, and she already has two children. The biggest risk is in her own desire to parent, so even if we do get chosen, we will need to wait until after she gives birth (due on September 1st) and then makes her decision. She is currently very adamant about giving this child up for adoption, but right now is not September 1st.

Baby boy. African American mom, and African American / Hispanic dad - again, gorgeous!

So send some good "pick us" vibes, and whatever other ju-ju you can, we need it, as the Birth Mother picked us, 2 other couples, and a single mom. So now, she looks at our photo album.

Thanks internet, you rock!

Monday, August 01, 2005


OK, so I had a physical today, and although I feel the need to lose aobut 80 pounds, my PCP (Primary care physician) feels I only need to lose about 40. MY BMI is 36 - ZOINKS - that's 4 points shy of surgery folks. I'd NEVER do the surgery, and I know it's worked for some people, so I'm not judging, I'm just saying, I'D never do it.

OK internet, I need some help here. I've done OA, and I lost 125 pounds, and then quit smoking and went on fertility drugs, and gained about 60 back. I've been doing a half ass job at Weight Watchers, but I DO work out, and I love it. But I've been hovering at this current weight for about a year, and I'm sick of it.

I SO UNDERSTAND how to lose weight: "Eat less, move more." I have the "move more" part down pat, but who wants to move in and be my personal chef and hand slapper and ego stroker, saying "Shelli, you are good enough as you are, you don't need that 1 point only 70 calorie fudgicle to feel better..."

See how hard it is? When it's only one point?


More on Harry...

Sorry gang, I just can't get enough right now, and I'm sure it will die down, but with book six just finished, and now having re-read almost all of the books again, I share the following with you - but first, a public service announcement for all of those that want to speak of the religious qualities of the books....

PLEASE stop trying to compare the Harry Potter series to any form of Christ-like religious theology mumbo-jumo. We always try to find the deeper, hidden meaning, trying to find a G-d like presence in all that we see and do - just look at the virgin mary who showed up on a piece of toast and is being sold on e-bay.

I mean, really.

When it comes down to it, we, as humans, only know a few handful of story plots, and we keep doing them OVER and OVER and OVER and OVER. Shakespeare borrowed form the bible, we borrow from Shakespeare. Almost any Bible story has been told in numerous forms in various centuries by random writers. Don't believe me? Go ahead, pick up a book, any work of fiction and read it while LOOKING for a parable or a Torah Portion or a Christ-reference - you'll find it SOMEWHERE in there. Our ability to creatively invent is great, but it is also limited in a sense. We only know of about 5 plots, and we twist them something awful, but all stories are linked to a total of about five plot or through-lines.

So there's nothing new, really, and it's all the same, but it's HOW it's told that is wonderous, shining and new, and makes me stay up until 2am every night reading.

I LOVE JK Rowling for getting people hooked on reading again, and even personally so. I was one of those kids who, after being tucked in, would get a book and a flashlight and read for an hour or two before falling to sleep. I stopped doing that as I got older, and relied more on TV and other forms of entertainment. Like the state quarters that renewed my interest in the coin collecting I did as a child; JK Rowling renewed my interest in reading, and for that, I'm eternally grateful.

Now, to my philosophies and thoughts and clues that I've picked up along the way, while re-reading the books again. I'm about to finish book 4, and start book 5, so I'm sure I'll have more to say, but here's a start...

In Book one, we hear Dumbledore say to Harry:
“To the organized mind, Harry, Death is but the next great adventure.” – so YES, DD is really dead. HE will “live” through his portraits, however.

In book two, we hear DD tell Harry that he’s never really gone for those that are loyal to him, and as a result, Fawkes comes to his aid against the basalisk, giving him the sword from the sorting hat, so how will Fawkes, the sword and the sorting hat come to Harry's Aid in Book 7?

In book three, we learn about Trelawney’s prophecy “Voldemort will come to power, and it will be his servant (Peter Pettigrew) that will help him.” (this we see in the end of Book 4)

We also learn about the time turner – which I HOPE comes to play in book seven… perhaps they sneak into the Ministry of Magic and steal it, and turn back time to prevent DD’s death….

And we learn that “if a wizard saves another wizards life, they have a special bond, and he is indebted to him.” (Potter saving Pettigrew) – THAT explains why Snape is always saving Potter, as James saved HIS life, and since he could not save James’ life, he is now focusing on Harry.

In book four, we learn about Snape’s past as a Death Eater, and how he came over to the good side BEFORE Voldemoret fell, and how DD trusts him and uses him as a spy. I think DD and Snape did their own unbreakable vow some time back…

Oh, and as for the movies, I was getting so annoyed that their hair was getting longer, but then I realized – “Look at Dumbledore!” HIS hair is long. DOH! Wizards have long hair. Except, of course from other schools. So perhaps it’s just a Hogwarts thing.

In book four, Voldemort uses some of Harry’s blood to “come back” telling him that he is now using some of the same “protection” that Lilly used on Harry… Thus connecting Harry and Lord Voldemort even more.

I also have a TON of references as to how and why Snape is still good, and protecting and saving Harry, but they are the SAME as everyone elses. When I come up with a NEW thought (Like my thought that he and DD did the unbreakable vow) I'll share. For now, feel free to discuss amongst yourselves.