Monday, 30 September 2013

Supper at Cup - review

by Bex

It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of Cup Tea Lounge on Renfield Street.  I've been quite a few times in the last few months - with Roz, D and Linsey, with Anna, with Vikki, with Sarah Mc and now with Sarah C.  None of them had been before but all enjoyed it, I can't wait to take Mum for an afternoon tea treat when she's here for her visit!  (Edit: We actually went on Friday and it was a little disappointing compared to everything else they do.)  It's such a gorgeous venue and the staff are lovely!

Sarah and I went along one evening using the same deal that Roz, D, Linsey and I all used previously.  It had come up on Groupon again and Linsey had forgotten to book it in time and was no longer able to go before her voucher ran out so she booked it for me and Sarah to use instead.

This time we tried a different platter (we had different choices this time and there was a new savoury platter on offer), the salmon one.  We both chose the apple & ginger mojito and the same dessert as well - the plate of peach goodies.  Everything was amazing!

We asked to swap the melba toast (I hate melba toast) that was supposed to come with the salmon for the flatbread from a different platter instead, this wasn't a problem and we received plenty of nice warm flatbread and capers to accompany our fish.  Simple but delicious!

The peach flavoured sponge cake was absolutely delicious!  We also received a heart shaped piece of shortbread, peach custard and peach ice-cream.  We loved them all but the custard was rather runny, I liked it with the shortbread dunked in though.

Cup Tea Lounge on Urbanspoon

Our best embryo - video

by Bex

When I wrote about our most recent failure last Monday, I think I was still in a bit of shock.  It was, again, so unexpected and we'd been so excited to get to this next stage and have our, really good, embryos right there all ready to go inside and we were so ready for it, hoping to be lucky that one might implant and give us our much longed for child.  To have the whole thing called off because they simply couldn't get round a tight corner was devastating and I did struggle that night.  I hardly slept and spent most of the time I was in bed sobbing in Nik's arms and playing everything over in my mind.

It's one of the reasons I am glad everyone knows what's happening now as I was able to share the snippets of good news we did have.  The fact we even got embryos this time, the fact so many of them seemed good quality and the fact that although they were unable to implant them, they managed to freeze 6 of the 8 we had.  (We'd been told to prepare to have none left as they don't always make it to blastocyst stage in vitro which is required for freezing.)

I'm glad because, even though at times it feels like we get one step further just to take five steps back, we at least get to revel in the good news and share our good days with you all.  Sharing good news makes it so much more fun, to have all of your excited reactions added to ours is just magical.  And when it all goes wrong, having so many messages of support are a great distraction during the first day or so when coming to terms with yet more failure.

This time round as we made it far enough to have embryos incubated for the first few days while they are monitored, we paid extra for the Eeva system.  This basically monitors the embryos during the first 2 days with a camera and records high or low potential embryos depending on exactly when each cell-splitting stage occurs.  Obviously this is more accurate than them being checked intermittently by a human as we know exactly when each change happens as it's recorded by computer and can be checked back on the film.  This allows the embryologists to predict more accurately which embryos should make it to blastocyst stage.  It also means we don't have to wait to see which embryos make it to the next stage meaning they can go back in to a natural environment sooner, giving them a better chance.  It costs an extra few hundred pounds but given our low expectations of our embryos and the thousands we spend on each round, it seemed like a good investment to help us choose the most likely successful embryos for implantation!

A happy bonus of Eeva is that we received pictures of our two best embryos and a USB stick of information.  This USB actually contained videos of these two embryos so we could actually watch them change in sped-up time!  SO COOL!  I was fascinated watching the cells splitting over and over and the wobbly jelly-like movements of the cells.  I said I'd share it here and in the spirit of taking all we can get when it comes to celebrating any good news, we're thrilled at the fact that we do have such promising embryos in the hope that one day they will get inside me.

Like Lottie said on Twitter: 
amazing! Fertility treatment takes much enjoyment/normality away so little treats like this are worth a lot!!!!

Our fingers are crossed again that this next procedure is successful and they are able to gain access.  I can't even think about our alternatives yet as we've come so far and had everything thrown at us along this ride.  I would be utterly devastated if we fail to conceive over this simple issue of my angled uterus.  It was another unexpected hurdle and when they had to give up in theatre, I burst into tears as I just couldn't believe I was leaving there without my embryos inside me.  I feel like we haven't even had a real chance of getting pregnant yet as during these last 2 rounds we've never made it to the stage of reimplantation.  We know the majority of implantations fail, we just want our chance for it to work!  It's incredibly frustrating!

By the time we got home I had calmed down and just wanted to get it all out, written down and was just on robotic writing mode.  I knew everyone was waiting to hear how it went after the build up.  Like I've said before, it makes it easier for me if people know when things have gone wrong even more so than when they go well as that's when I tend to break down and need my friends to understand.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Summer in the park

by Bex

After having been so organised with the blog for so long, I'm now down to my last 3 finished posts with lots of half-finished drafts again!  It's been a rather busy time lately with so many distractions and not enough time to write about them all!  I knew I shouldn't have done so many 2 post days but I get too excited to share things I write and don't want to wait weeks to post them all!  Oops!  :)

Before we left for Malaysia (and missed the best of the UK heatwave) in July we had a lovely day of sunshine in Glasgow and spent it chilling out in a couple of the parks nearby.  I got adventurous wearing an old strapless top with a maxi, dressed up with a statement necklace to counteract any feeling of nakedness with bare shoulders!

Necklace - Wallis
Maxi skirt - Primark
Boob tube -
Watch - Guess
Bracelet - homemade
Bag - M&S
Sunglasses - ebay (bought for wedding)

Nik was busy so I sauntered along to Maxwell park on my own with a Twister to munch along the way.  He came to join me when he could and we relaxed on my rainbow towel and tartan blanket near our wedding venue which is situated within the park.

(I'd taken my necklace off to avoid any weird tan-line shapes!)

After I'd been reading for a while, Nik got bored so we decided to head to Rouken Glen, a much bigger park which I'd never been to before.  It's a beautiful country park with waterfalls, a pond and acres of space to wander around.

We came across some cute little cygnets munching on pondweed.

When a toddler started feeding them bread and the big daddy swan got closer (not the best at throwing yet).

It was a lovely day out in the sunshine.  I remember that this was right at the start of our first IVF cycle as we had a bit of a panic getting back in time for my 1st ever self-administered injection as we'd completely lost track of time and my reminder went off on my phone (luckily) so we had to rush back home!

Thursday, 26 September 2013

What I wore - Outfit Post

by Bex

You get me again today with a wee outfit post as Roz has been super busy this week so I'm afraid we'll have to leave you all in suspense for the details of the 2nd floor of her house.  I actually have quite a few photos of things I meant to blog about a while ago and thought it was about time I sorted through them and organised my laptop a bit since it's choc-a-bloc with photos so this one was perfect to squeeze in!

This was an outfit I meant to blog about ages ago but just found the photos and realised I hadn't done it!  It must have been in spring (or a cold summer day) as it would also suit for the more autumnal weather we're already getting.  I wore it for one of our Glasgow Baking Club meetings.

Jeans - M&S
Boots - Office
Socks - M&S
Blazer - Primark
Necklace - Dorothy Perkins
T-shirt - Primark
Bag - H&M (very old)

This next outfit was worn to the baking club meeting before that one when we celebrated our 1st birthday.  I wanted to try to punk up my coral maxi.

Maxi skirt - Mango
T-shirt - Internacionale
Ring - Forever 21
Earrings - Ollie & Nic
Bracelets - various
Black denim shirt - H&M
Denim jacket - H&M
Butterfly print scarf - Topshop
Boots - Next

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Flowers & Food

by Bex

This is another slightly random post.  Again, I had a few pictures I wanted to share but didn't feel they deserved their own full post so have combined them all here.  Basically it's just a few pretty pictures of flowers, fruit and some delicious platters I made during the summer.  These were all before we went to Malaysia after our 1st IVF cycle failed.  I bought myself the cheerful yellow ranunculuses (ranunculi?) and the beautiful Sweet Williams were a gift from Anne after I went home from work following the bad news.  

Doesn't jelly cheer everyone up?  Especially in the form of a heart!?  :)

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

AOW Edinburgh Meet-up

by Bex

We're having a wee shuffle about today as Roz has been super busy with work and the house so you can hear all about the 2nd floor on Thursday when she's had a bit more time to write it ;)  Instead you're getting me today with some super cute pictures of the peas!

A few of us AOW readers in Scotland decided to meet up recently in Eteaket.  I think it was just coincidence that we're all AOWers.  Originally Roz was meeting up with Lara after work then more people joined in via Twitter and it changed to a weekend and I was invited along as well for afternoon tea and a catch up.  In the end Roz wasn't able to make it as she'd had a better offer ;)  I was excited to meet Ashleigh, Steff and Gwen (who it turned out I had met briefly at Blook Club before) and to catch up with Lara and Kirsty and of course to meet the super cute Peas (Steff's twin girls)!  I will warn you now, this is basically a post full of cute baby pictures!

Initially the Peas were a bit shell-shocked by their first AOW meet-up but we soon got smiles and cuddles :)

Smiles from Charlotte and a pout from Heather :)

 Just so it's not all babies - here's what we ate...

I had a slice of lemon & coconut cake which was OK but nothing amazing and pretty pricy with my bill being £6.40 for just that and a sparkling water.  Everyone else enjoyed some tea and massive scones with jam and clotted cream.

After cake it was time for cuddles and I was rather chuffed to get full on snuggles from Charlotte, even if she does look a little concerned!

 Both looking seriously cute!

Heather then showed off her trick of grabbing back her dummy when Mummy stole it!

 Soon it was time for them all to get wrapped up again and say goodbye.

"Uh, Mum this lady's STILL taking photos of me!"

"Yep, me too!"

They really didn't want to leave us :(
(Or I was just freaking them out too much with my camera!)
We had a fab time and after everyone else had to go, Gwen, Lara and I all wandered along to Anthropologie for a browse.  Sadly everything I liked was too expensive with the exception of these gorgeous coasters...

At £8 each they're still pretty steep for coasters but I plan to use them as wall art so I think they're quite a bargain!  I'm not sure which room they're going in yet but I love them and have attached hoops to hang them as a set.

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