Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Stupid fertility themed headlines

I'm not even going to go through the courtesy of linking to them. If you want to find them, they're on Yahoo News and elsewhere I'm sure.

Psychotherapy helps infertile 'superwomen'
Just relax and you'll get pregnant!

But then, you can quit the pychotherapy, since:
Some stress during pregnancy may be good for baby

But, only some, not too much!
Pregnancy stress 'passed to baby'

A quote from another story about multiple births from IVFs:

He added that transferring one embryo gives almost the same result as two but without the risk of multiple births or the added costs of caring for premature infants.

Really? "Almost"? I guess the only difference is that it's one less, so that's not much, is it? That's not *really* a difference, is it?

Benefits of fertility treatment outweigh costs: study
Ya think?
(they were focusing on the overall benefit to the government and society by having another person in the world, but still, stupid headline).

And this one is plain funny:
Sex is essential, kids aren't
(apparently, 30% of German women just aren't interested in having kids, and the government is horrified).

This is why I read blogs, not the news ;).

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Notes from the "I Do...Let's Eat" Chinese wedding episode

Notes from the TV show tonight - I have no idea if these are all considered traditional. The groom's family (Chris) was from Hong Kong, and very traditional. The bride's family (Amy) lives in the US and are more Westernized. They had a traditional Western, Christian ceremony first, then had a Chinese banquet at a hotel.

  • When the groom comes to pick up his bride, he has to get past the bridesmaids, who have to approve of him before they let him see her. They make him perform some physical tasks, testing his physical prowess, seeing how much money he has, and how smart he has.
  • But these bridesmaids didn't seem to ask for much.
  • The wedding has to be very elaborate, as it shows the family's stature & financial status.
  • First course: Roast suckling pig.
  • But the bride, groom & bridesmaids had chicken nuggets in the limo on the way to the church.
  • While the guests had appetizers, the bride and groom changed to traditional Chinese attire (gorgeous!), and had a tea ceremony for their parents and grandparents to show their honor for them.
  • Then, BACK they went into their Western dress and joined the guests for dinner. On to the roast suckling pig!
  • Second course: shark's fin soup, the most important part of the entire meal, which portrays the host's wealth. The Chinese loved the soup. Westerners described it as "watery jello".
  • Between the courses, they have a little fun, like playing a version of The Newlywed's Game with the bride and groom. Cute.
  • 5th course: Sea cucumber and abalone.
  • 6th course: Lobster.
  • Overall...10 courses. Before the dessert buffet and wedding cake!
  • The couple loved the whole meal...but Chris says the best part was marrying Amy (awwww!).
  • The couple went into the kitchen to thank the kitchen staff, which was very nice.

I was a little disappointed that this couple barely wore traditional Chinese attire. I know that it's up to the couple, though. My sister in law's good friend, who is Chinese, married a man who was also Chinese (even though that wasn't always her plan). They had a Chinese banquet after their Western ceremony, wearing their traditional Chinese clothing the entire time. And I'm pretty sure that they had 15 courses that went on for hours. But I don't think either wedding had one dish of potentially kosher food at all!


Oh this is too funny. The next episode of the show, immediately following the Chinese wedding, is a Russian Jewish wedding, which is strictly kosher! The contrast could not be greater.

And the announcer is butchering the pronounciation of all the Hebrew words...ha ha ha ha ha.

If any of you are watching TV RIGHT NOW...

If you're watching TV (at least on the East Coast) at this moment, and you have cable, switch over to WE. They're running an episode of "I Do...Let's Eat", a show I've never seen before.

Of course, the first couple they're featuring is a Chinese-American couple, and their very, very traditional Chinese wedding.

All I can say is dried shark fin looks very interesting. And darn expensive at $80 a bowl!

Not that I'll ever have to eat it. Shark is definitely not kosher!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

So close....

So we're eating lunch at a kosher restaurant in Teaneck today along with other family members today. They had the ceremony for my mother-in-law's mother's gravestone dedication, and afterwards she took us and select friends and relatives of hers out to a popular kosher eatery. W

I had a really good wrap, enjoyed my food and catching up with various relatives who we don't normally spend much time with. Went to um, powder my nose. Came back, sat down and casually eyed the father and daughter at the cash register. And immediately noted that the back of the daughter's head consisted of very, very shiny stick-straight gorgeous black hair. It looked like Chinese hair.

I breathlessly waited for her to turn around, preferably before the father finished paying. She finally did...and yup, she was Chinese. Since I don't think there are any Orthodox Jewish Chinese women married to Orthodox Jewish guys in Teaneck...she had to be adopted.

First, I punched my husband (lightly...on the leg...didn't want to make a scene) and whispered "HOW COULD YOU NOT NOTICE!!!!". I had just put on my sunglasses as the sun glare had gotten pretty bad and I was starting to get a headache, but didn't want to look all stalkerish when trying to talk to this dad, so I took them off. Stood up, looked at him, wanting to be brave and start a conversation with another adoptive parent, and....waited for him to get off his cell phone.

He left, with his daughter, with the cellphone glued to his ear. Dammit! Missed!

He actually came back because he had left a bag in the restaurant, and I actually managed to make eye contact, but he was STILL on his phone. Dammit again.

He then came back a third time, probably because he left something at his table. But he didn't come back through the main door. I actually sent my husband over to the other dining room to see if they were in there. I think I scared him and he decided to go out through a different door.

Sheesh. This is the second time this has happened to me! Why am I the freaky woman who scares off other adoptive parents! Aaahhhh!

So I was close to meeting another Orthodox family with an adopted daughter from China...but not.


Friday, June 09, 2006

One milestone reached

We finally sent in our I-600-A and our State security check forms. Woohoo! $625 to make sure we aren't axe murderers! Yay!

All I'm sayin' is that we didn't have to do this before our multiple fertility procedures. They should. With all the hormones I was on, I probably would have completely trashed the fertility clinic if I had heard all the negative pregnancy test results in the office. Instead, I was tempted to crash my car. They should definitely do criminal background checks on fertility patients.

We also sent in a batch of paperwork to our agency, which has all been approved. Whew.

What haven't we sent in?

Physical forms: This deserves a blog post of its own, but I don't feel like retelling the whole sordid story. All I'm going to say is once we *finally* have those completed forms in our hands (which we started chasing back in MARCH), we will immediately switch doctors, and also notify a local medical referral agency that this doctor is a complete and total idiot. I can't wait. Of course, this is also holding up our home study.

Guardianship form: Quite frankly, this is a tough one. None of our immediate family qualifies, and I really feel like it's a burden to ask our good friends to sign this. Technically, this form is not legally binding and we can designate someone else as a guardian in our wills, but this still seems like a lot to ask from someone. And they already wrote us a referral letter. Plus the wife in this couple is due, like, any minute. I think we'll wait a couple more weeks.

Pictures: Aack. We really do not have too many good pictures of the two of us, let alone of us and our family. We took some pictures at The Picture People in March and ended up with one good pose, and may have finally taken some nice shots last week when we were all dressed up before a wedding. I also had 90% of my family over at our house last week for a get-together/birthday party, and in the pictures we took of the family sitting around the table, only one niece is sticking her tongue out, so they're not *too* bad. I think we just need a couple more shots of the two of us, then I have to um, clean, and then take pictures of the house. So the end may be in sight. Oh, and we still need passport pictures. Just remembered.

Autobiographies: Darn. I forgot about this. I was sincerely hoping that we wouldn't have to write these, as this should have been covered in our homestudy (we used a local social worker/adoption agency, as our adoption agency is not from our state). They told us we had to write one anyways.

Financial Statement: I really don't want to send it in with the number of say, zero, in the savings column. My boss owes me: a) a bonus for a large project I've been handling the past 18 months and b) a raise. He has promised to come thru with these in 4 weeks. He's handling a large project right now that will have significant ramifications, and which I am helping with, so I understand why he can't sit down and evaluate my work right now. In a way, it's a compliment. I've been with my company nearly 10 years and work closely with him, and hold a senior position within the company. But it also means that I don't get automatic pay raises. They come more sporadically, but they're usually pretty significant. So we could be pretty flush in a month, or at least in a slightly better financial situation. The day that money hits our bank account is the day our financial statement hits the mailbox. But it's one thing that I can't cross off our list.

And that's it! It doesn't sound so bad now.

But the local Department of Homeland Security is running on a three month processing time for I-600-A's. I guess while we patiently wait for that precious I-171-H, we will learn to be patient for that every elusive referral...for which I am preparing myself to wait up to 24 months. Two freakin' years.

Hope I can handle that.

06/11/06 Edited to add:

You're probably wondering why it took us over a month to send in our I-600-A since I promised a potential travel-mate that I would send it in . That would be because we a) lost my husband's birth certificate, and, b) NY State's "expedited" option screwed up and took a few weeks to send us a new one, even though it should have arrived within a week. We may have needed the new one anyways, since the version we did have at one point was not a complete birth certificate.