Saturday, July 31, 2010

I'm THAT Mom!

I have been reading this impromptu Blog Carnival, posted by Melissa, and decided to join in the fun!

I am THAT Mom:
*The one who lets her 5 yr old watch movies about magic, witches, Buddhism, zombies. real life looking dinosaurs, and shark attacks because I know that she has an imagination that needs nurturing and she LOVES it!
* The mom who has no problem sitting in the dirt digging for worms in the rain, even though I have my favorite jeans on. 
* The calm on the outside mom who is trying to wrangle my kids plus my "borrowed" kids at the beach, because it is more important that they get outside time and sensory activity than me have my sanity.
*The one who serves lunches in muffin tins, bento boxes, and enjoys making rainbow pancakes just because they are pretty! 
* The mom who tries to be calm like Buddha, crafty like Martha, and awesome like SuperNanny (because she reforms parents not kids!), but has a long way to go on all of the above. 
* That mom who is standing up for herself and her rights to birth her way, despite the protests of the mainstream medical community and even friends. Not only defying "orders" but happily educating others and blogging about it the whole time! 


Friday, July 30, 2010

A Steal of a Deal

Today and tomorrow get Layering Camis at Old Navy for only $2! Usually they are $8.50 and there are tons of great colors to choose from. And for all my fellow nursing or soon to be nursing mommies, buy a few extra and convert them into nursing camisoles, to mimic these way more expensive ones!

Click here for the actual coupon!

Oh, and don't forget to sign up for the Moveable Feast Swap! The deadline to sign up is extended to the 7th and the shipping deadline is the 31st! Lots of people have already signed up so don't be left out of the foodie fun!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Back in the Ring

Hello readers!!! How is everyone today? I am here, trying to keep my happy-go-lucky attitude, especially after yesterday's fiasco.

I had called around a few weeks ago looking for another OB since my current OB is unwilling to even discuss a VBAC with me and went to the extremes of lying to me in the hopes of scaring me out of my search for a normal, non-surgical birth. When I called this new office I made sure to stress the point that I have had 2 previous c-sections, the receptionist checked with a nurse, and I thought that we were good to go...ha!

Basically the OB said that although there was nothing wrong with me, (she didn't even look at me or my scar), that I would be going against medical advice to pursue even a Trial of Labor. She attempted to lay on some common scare tactics found here, and when I brought up the new ACOG VBAC Guidelines she didn't acknowledge that women with 2 c-sections like mine should be offered the chance to labor. I think I stopped even believing anything that came out of her mouth when she stated that ALL VBAC patients HAVE to have an epidural and that if they don't "progress according to our guidelines" they are automatically sectioned.

Does anyone else see a problem with this blanket treatment?

On the way home I really struggled to keep my head and undo all the damaging lies yet another OB laid on Klint, who was with me. I knew that the OB directed many of the scare tactics at him since she knew I was determined and informed. And, to her credit, it worked... he was terrified and convinced that I should just lay down and get a c-section. All I can say is thank goodness that I knew something about birthing history and can counter the whole "doctors know best" argument with pointing out that 50 years ago women were strapped down, given drugs that made them hallucinate, and put into a haze to have babies.... they had to wear helmets to protect their heads from the wild thrashing, and put in crib-like beds to suffer alone.

I know that there are probably many other people who think that I am a total nut for fighting so hard, especially when almost every office that I have talked to basically laughed at me for daring to ask. But there is evidence- good evidence- to suggest that this is indeed the BEST possible thing I can do for both me and Miss M. More importantly, I think that if ACOG specifically points out that this is safe and appropriate for me, OB's should take note and at least listen to my information and look at me as an individual and not just a liability.

Here are some of those sources that have gotten me here... to a place where at least I feel informed enough to make an intelligent decision and can weed out the medical BS from honest open-minded truth.

ICAN- The International Cesarean Awareness Network
Birthing Beautiful Ideas
The Well-Rounded Mama

No matter what though, this is something that I am doing not only for me and Miss M, but for other women who are being forced into c-sections and have no clue what there rights are. If some serious change is going to happen it has to come from the people who are being directly affected.

And just to know I am not the only one fighting all these doctors and nurses... here is one heck of an inspiring story from a board I belong to on Baby Center... this woman has some serious guts and kept her eye on the prize.

Have a great day, thanks for listening to me, and cross your crossables (thanks Jen!) because I found an OB office about 15 mins away who does support VBAMC's... I am just waiting for the OBs to look over my records!


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

It's a Fabric Palooza!

Hello! How is everyone doing, especially my fellow Clevelanders who are getting a lovely break from the searing heat and humidity? I am great and have been having soooo much fun sewing and sewing, making things for Miss M's nursery and of course, making things for my girls.

Yesterday I was quite the sewing machine... I made some GIANT fabric birds (I enlarged the pattern from here to 300%!), some rice heating pads- tutorial here, and even some play strawberries for the girls... soooo easy! I would love to show you the strawberries but the cats and girls seem to think that they make great cat toys and are now wandering about the house!  (The way I learned how to make them is right here!)

I think that I am going to use a giant embroidery hoop for the top of the mobile and then stick the birds around it with the smaller bird in the middle. It will fit in with the fabric hoops on the wall and the quilt fabric. I am toying with making some more quilts for the girls as well... maybe a fabric snake for Gabby and some butterflies and flowers for AJ? Speaking of quilts.... isn't this Baby Life Quilt adorable?? (There are tons of great tutorials on this blog like this awesome rag rug... I want to make one this winter!)


Sunday, July 25, 2010

A Moveable Feast Swap!

"One cannot live well, sleep well, or love well, if one has not dined well" ~Virginia Woolf

Well folks, the end of summer is in sight... the school supplies are out in stores, July is almost over, and in craft stores the fall and Halloween items are everywhere. I am looking forward to fall though, as always, for the food! I love going fruit picking, the smell of pumpkin coffee, and baking fresh pies in the kitchen. So what better time to do a swap that is centered on food?! 

Here are the Rules of the Swap:
Your package should contain food-themed items, meaning anything from recipe cards, candles that are food smells, homemade mixes, and small items for the kitchen to food themed craft supplies and felt foods. You can send an apron, tea towels with food on them, vintage recipe books, or even things to make eating food more fun like Bento supplies or chopsticks. I know I would love Bento supplies like silicone muffin liners, fun toothpicks, and of course, anything Strawberry!

The contents should not exceed $25 before shipping and should be packaged as beautifully as the contents within. You should tailor the package to fit your partner's likes and will get the same in return. There is no limit to the number of items so be as creative as possible!!!

If you want to Join In:
1. Email the following information to me (
    * Name
    * Mailing Address
    * Blog Address (if you have one)
    * Some information about yourself to make matching you with a partner easier
    * Food allergy info
    * Let me know if you are willing to ship internationally
2. I will send you an email back to confirm that you are in the Swap Pool. 
3. You have until August 7th to enter the Swap and will get your swap partner's information by August 10th. It is up to you to email your partner and find out more about them to create a package that will delight the senses! 
4. Packages MUST be postmarked by August 31st and it would be preferable to let your partner know when the package was mailed out. 
5. When you receive your package take some pics, post about the swap on your blog, and let me know how things turned out!!

*** PLEASE: If you sign up for the swap and find out that you can't commit please let me know asap. I would hate for someone to not get their package after putting lots of time and effort into their part. I would love to make this Swap a huge success so please spread the word, blog, Facebook about it and let's have some foodie fun!


Saturday, July 24, 2010

A Hottie but a Goodie

Ok, I am officially ready for fall to get here! It is about 93 degrees here in Cleveland and the humidity makes you feel as if you are breathing your water instead of drinking it... ugh! Lucky for me I got out early, hit up some garage sales (I scored a Vera Bradley diaper bag for only $15!!!), and have a nicely air conditioned house to come home to. I may go back out later to get to the farmer's market, but right now I am content to work on Miss M's baby announcement design and surf the web while the girls nap.

Here are some things that I have seen that make me smile on this hot but good day:

I am loving these fabric letters by fellow Etsian Tecelinha! This is her actual blog, but unless you know Portuguese or your computer translates it, you will be lost!

Being somewhat smaller than your average driver, I find that it is really uncomfortable to wear my seatbelt properly because the edge is always cutting into my neck. Maybe I will make a seatbelt cover like this one to alleviate the issue!

I am seeing this balloon party invitation all over the web and am soooo smitten, what a great and simple idea!

Another project on my list is to make a couple nursing covers so that I can have them stashed in bags and such and won't have to hunt them up when I want to nurse. I like this tutorial because it looks easy and there is so much room for personalization!

Klint and I rearranged our bedroom and now have a lot more wall space to decorate so I am eyeing this pretty Custom Family Tree that is not your usual tree design!

Well that is about it for now... this little one is jumping about in my belly so I am off to lay down for a bit. Cheers and stay cool!!


Friday, July 23, 2010

A Candle for Logan

As many of you know I am very lucky in that not only do I get to stay at home with my own children, but I have the privilege of caring for other children of friends. I have a wonderful group of little girls (poor Klint is surrounded by pink and estrogen!) that I "borrow" throughout the week. Well one of those little girls had a tragedy happen in her family last week and I just want to take a moment to share this story with you.

Jen, one of my parents, has a nephew named Logan that was struck by a car on July 14th. He is 9 years old and was having fun skateboarding. Jen sent out this information to everyone regarding the accident. 
 On Wednesday, July 14 Logan was riding his "Ripstick" (modified skateboard) down a newly paved road near his home. He was going pretty fast (estimate 20-25 mph) and was unable to stop for a stop sign and consequently hit a moving car who did not see him coming nor could do anything to avoid the collision. She, a neighbor who know Logan and family, was going about 18 mph. Joe & Kim were outside getting ready for an outing and heard something happen. The ambulance took Logan to the local ER (not sure which hospital) but was then immediately life-flighted to Akron Children's Hospital.
Unfortunately he has been in a coma the whole time and it is unknown what kind of brain injuries he has suffered. At best, there will be many months of rehabilitation and therapy for this energetic little boy. When a brain injury happens to a young child it is like throwing a ripple in a pool.... the brain is still growing and while some issues may not be present now, they will develop and the brain tries to grow with age. And with this prognosis come cost, a lot of cost. 
I have seen the blogging community do great things when tragedy strikes. Especially when a child is involved. If you would like to help the Janson family in their time of crisis there has been a trust fund set up in Logan's name through Huntington Bank. All you have to do is go to any branch and tell them that you want to donate to the Logan Janson fund. Or, even easier, you can use PayPal and send the money straight to the account

Jen just set up a Caring Bridge website for Logan to keep everyone updated on his progress and prognosis, simply click here and you will be taken to it! As a parent I can't imagine the stress that this family is going through and the worry with their son in a coma for almost 10 days. I hope that everyone hugs their own child a little tighter today and pray, light a candle, or whatever you do to send well wishes out into the world for other's in need. And please remember that every little bit helps this family, so please do not hesitate to send a small donation their way! 


Thursday, July 22, 2010

A to Z

Swiped from Jennifer since she is el Preggers like me and tons of fun!

a. area code: 216
b. bed size: queen, which is more than enough room for me since Klint works nights!
c. chore you hate: dishes 
d. dog’s name: Spooky Doo (she looks like a creeped out Scooby Doo) 
e. essential “start of the day” item: bagel with butter and cream cheese 
f. favorite color: sunshine yellow
g. gold or silver: silver (I am allergic to gold)
h. height: 4'10''- no I am not a Little Person and no I don't need a Booster Seat to drive!
i. instruments you play: clarinet and piano 
j. job: home daycare provider, dance teacher, Etsy artist, graphic designer, and Usborne book rep! (Yes, I really do all those jobs every week!) 
k. kids: Gabby (almost 6), Amelia (almost 3), and Miss M due 12/2/10 
l. living arrangements: renting an awesome little house a few blocks from the lake!
m. mom’s name: Lucifer
n. nickname: I don't think any of my nicknames are appropriate for this PG-rated forum!!!
o. overnight hospital stay: C-sections only I think!
p. pet peeve: wet jeans, wet bottoms of pants, not wiping off the tables and counters, ruffled slipcover, the list goes on! 
q. quote from movie: "Honey, time marches on and eventually you realize it is marching across your face!) Truvy from Steel Magnolias
r. righty or lefty: Righty
s. siblings: too complicated to try to explain
t. time you wake up: usually between 6:30 and 7 thanks to Miss M kicking my bladder
u. underwear: yep, got some on!
v. vegetables you dislike: cauliflower aka veggie brains
w. ways or reasons you are late: that is a rare thing... I run the house like a tight ship!
x. x-rays: lots and lots 
y. yummy food you make: taco dip, lasagna, fruit salsa 
z. zoo animals you like: monkeys and polar bears!


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Finished Bunting Quilt!!!

I have always been envious of women who could whip up a quilt in no time flat, the assembly of such a project seemed very daunting to me, and my Crafter's ADD would never allow me to do a project that took weeks and not hours! =) That is why when I came across this easy peasy Bunting Quilt tutorial I was really excited.... the directions are short, sweet, to the point, and there is no mention of fusible webbing or anything that requires materials that I am not too familiar with.

I made a few changes to the design, actually only 2 or so: first off, I changed the size to a yard and a half and second, instead of making my own bias tape I just bought two colors of double-fold bias tape. I made more flags than what was in the tutorial as well to compensate for the larger size.

This project was so much fun that I think I may make ones for the girls as well! 

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The List 7.20.10

Hello Out There!!!
  I have been gathering my fabric and such to make some things for Miss M's nursery and tomorrow will have a finished Bunting Quilt to show you! I am soooo excited with how it turned out and highly impressed with how easy it was to assemble. Best yet, it is a lot heavier than I imagined without the bulk, perfect for a winter baby girl. Anyhow, as you can see I made over my blog banner and the widget labels... I just wasn't digging my old banner and since I am obsessed with Polyvore wanted the challenge of creating my ideal craft/reading space for the header. Definitely heading in the write direction!

So here are some things that I have found on the web that I would loooove to share with you all:

I love sketching, doodling, and writing down my thoughts in "pretty" ways.... The Sketchbook Project is a great idea and just think of your future family members taking your Sketchbook out of the library for years to come! (It's like a concert tour, but with Sketchbooks!)

Speaking of writing things down... how about sewing a special note for someone you love? This Embroidery Paper kit from Twine is perfect for the hard to please person!

Do you like having photos on your tables or desk but hate those bulky photo frames? Why not just make yourself some fun Magnetic Animal Photo Holders? Soooo easy (and your kids will never miss all those plastic animals!)

With the two girls having their birthdays pretty soon I am trying to find a special and useful gift for each of them. I am thinking that these personalized bowls with their names and likenesses on them will be a huge hit, especially at breakfast time!

And of course I can't forget something handmade from Mama for each of them... in the past it has been sock animals or blankets... this year they both want huge scrap fabric snakes! This tutorial will definitely come in handy!

If we ever win the lottery or have tons of money to spend on ridiculously expensive clothes you can bet that a good portion will be going to The Tea Collection, especially since they started carrying Women's clothes.... I am in LOVE with this mustard, long, belted cardigan. (Too bad is it almost $200!) Be sure to check out the sales section though for kids... some great (and affordable) buys in there!

Finally, in looking for cute clothes for Miss M (she has to have at least a few things that aren't from Gabby and AJ!) I found this lovely onesie made by a very earth conscious company in CA. I am digging all the wooden toys and organic cotton clothes!

Well, that is about it for now folks! Have a great day and be sure to come back tomorrow for a glimpse of my finished Bunting Quilt!!!


Monday, July 19, 2010


I have been taking photos like crazy this summer, trying to capture all the fun and the last summertime that we are going to be a family of four. It is hard to imagine next summer when we will have a 6 month old baby with us, playing in the water, watching fireworks, and catching fireflies.

One of the best things about taking all these photos is that I get beautiful shots like this one.... just walking along to a festival holding hands. I love it and can't wait to get a print of it to hang up!


I love Ballet Flats!

Another fun design board with the help of Polyvore!!
I Love BalletFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

I Love Ballet by Connie Laettner Krebs featuring Marc Jacobs bags


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Taking a Break From Fighting

Well yesterday was quite a day and I am still trying to process exactly what happened at my OB appointment.

After hearing about how great me and the baby are doing I decided to bring up a VBAC once more to give my OB the benefit of the doubt and so that Klint could ask what he wanted to. Well, I think that if I would have asked if it was ok to shoot some cocaine up my arm before birth I would have had a more positive response! No joke! Basically we were fed a lot of scare tactics to deter me from even considering trying for a VBAC and left the office with me feeling extremely pissed and upset and Klint probably scared out of his mind.

Well, after reading tons and tons of information I determined that my OB is full of crapola and that no matter what happens I need to switch to another OB, preferably one who won't lie to me deliberately to prove she knows more and to scare me into doing something that isn't safe. I have my research and facts from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynocology regarding VBACS and until the 27th I am going to take a break from fighting doctors... let's just hope that this new OB is a little more honest and open-minded when it comes to my specific case!

I think that it is a little crazy that not only do I have to fight to NOT have surgery, but that I know that in the hospital I am going to have to fight to not be given medicines, pain killers, keep my baby with me the whole time, leave without her getting the Hep B vaccine, and labor how I want to among other things. Aren't these things that should be a given? Maybe I was given this challenge so that other women who are facing the same issues will have an easier chance... definitely something to think about!


Friday, July 16, 2010

I Hate Waiting- UPDATE

Sorry for the lack of posts this week... it has been a crazy one and I am very thankful that it is coming to an end. As some of you know I had my 20 week ultrasound on Monday (YAY for being halfway done!). I thought everything was going well, but when I went to leave the tech asked me to wait because she had to ask my OB something before I left.... uh oh. I immediately started to worry.

Turns out that the tech saw a small cyst (bit of fluid) in Miss M's brain... nothing too uncommon and typically goes away on it's own. However, it is a small marker for chromosomal issues like Downs.... great. So they asked me to get some blood drawn for the Quad Screen marker which checks for things like Downs Syndrome and other problems. And goody, I wouldn't get the results until Thursday morning....sigh, I suck at waiting.

I am generally not a worrier. I take the "If I can fix it then I will, but if there is nothing I can do, then why worry?" approach to life. This is a different ball game though because it is my body and I think I have a certain degree of control over what is going on... so of course I start thinking about all the prenatals I missed, how crappy my appetite has been, sleeping on my back, basically everything that I could have done differently to maybe prevent who knows what!

Fast forward through 2 days of worrying to yesterday morning. Nurse called, Quad screen came back negative for abnormalities- yay! BUT.... the OB wants to see me asap to go over some of the things seen in the ultrasound. WHAT?????? No details, nothing. Just that. UGH! MORE WORRYING???

So now I am even MORE worried because at least cysts I could research and know that pretty much they are harmless, etc. The unknown I can't even look up! I have nothing to go by and here I am, awake WAY before anyone else because my mind is once again racing. We were supposed to go to Niagara Falls today, but I canceled the trip because there was no way I could wait until Tuesday for answers.

Now I just have to wait until noon... and I HATE waiting!

** UPDATE** Well, I am so happy to say that everything is alright with both me and Miss M. There were two other anomalies found but neither are really out of the ordinary, life altering, or serious. One of her kidneys seems to be a teeny bit larger than the other which will correct itself as she continues to grow, and the tech couldn't see the middle bone on her pinkie finger. So all that worrying was for nothing since none of these things indicate anything serious and even the missing bone thing is not certain. Whew!
Thank you for all the well wishes, prayers, and thoughts... they are all greatly appreciated!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dear Polyvore, I ♥ You!

So remember the blog banner that I created for fellow December mommy Amy last week or so? The cool one with real furniture and such? Well I am not kicking myself because l have discovered a website that would have made that whole process sooooo much easier. Hello Polyvore!

Polyvore is a genius site for fashionistas and interior designers alike. Forget searching for hours for the perfect photo of a desk on a white background, look no further to put that perfect outfit together, and if you think your BFF needs a makeover you can send her some awesome outfit suggestions that will make her swoon with delight!

This website it totally FREE, soooo easy to use, and if you type what you are looking for like "pink desk" you get results a lot faster. Better yet, there are contests that feature some of the most creative users where the winner receives actual prizes! The current contest is a feature of Tacori Diamonds, a very fine jeweler, and the winner gets a pair of Barbados Blue earrings!!!

Whether you are really into fashion (you can search by designer too!), enjoy redecorating your home, or just like to put together "looks", this site it totally for you.

(If you want to see some of my creations, here is my current list of "projects"!)

Monday, July 12, 2010

Baby Bunting Quilt

I finally started getting together some decorating ideas together for Miss M's room this weekend including fabric embroidery hoops, a pretty embroidered muslin growth chart, and a modge-podged inital. But today I found a project that takes my love of fabric, bunting, and quilts to a whole new level!

Check this BEAUTIFUL quilt tutorial out thanks to A Pretty Cool Life!

I love that I can use all my scrap fabric for this and that it will match the decor of the room perfectly.

Even better is that it uses flannel in the middle instead of batting to cut down on the thickness.
Sigh... I can't wait to get going on this! The tutorial is SUPER easy, even a beginner could handle this without a problem. She even shows you how to make your own bias tape if you wanted to! Genius I am telling you!
I think that I may even make mine a bit bigger so that I can cuddle with Miss M under it... Well, now you know what I will be doing this weekend!

P.S.- And if you don't feel like sewing one of these quilts yourself, hop over to Cheryl's shop on Etsy and buy one! (But don't blame me if you end up also buying a pretty apron, some sweet smelling sachets, and a few bean bags!)


Saturday, July 10, 2010

Can Someone Just Buy This Store for Me?

Through the years I have discovered that when left to my own devices and an unlimited spending account I tend to shop in stores that are a bit funky, kitchy, and functional. I don't have many things lying about without a purpose, but the things that I do have are not... well, normal.

For instance, instead of a normal toothbrush holder,  all of our brushes and toothpastes are held in small pretty aqua colored buckets on the wall under the mirror. Instead of keeping my jewelry in a box, I have a cool looking branch in a recycled glass jar that my earrings and necklaces hang off of. So when I discovered Mod Cloth I was stunned, delighted, and hid my wallet so I wouldn't bankrupt my family!

Here are some things that I love... please feel free to buy anything here for me for whatever reason you want to make up!

1. Your Friend, Necklace- $15.99
2. Big Fish Umbrella- $27.99
3. Pass the Peas Salt and Pepper Shaker- $21.99
4. I'm a Little Teapot- $44.99
5. Experimental Decor Bud Vase- $23.99
6. Lemon Peel Flat- $27.99
7. Cherry Valance Dress- $99.99
8. Washing & Hoping & Dreaming Dish Rack- $42.99


Thursday, July 8, 2010

The List 7.8.10

I don't know about the rest of you around the country but I am so over this heat thing! I must have been an eskimo or a Maine dwelling lobsterman in a past life, because I get through June alright but when it comes to July and August I dream of cooler breezes! Hopefully here are some fun links to keep you cool, check them out... lots of fun stuff here.

Need something inside for the kids to do? How about some new felt food for them? Over here there are some cute tutorials on how to make your own felt kiwibroccoli, and other fun food for the play kitchen... super easy to do too!

With a house full of little girls (not just my own but also all the little ones I care for during the week!) there are quite a few tutus in our dress up bin. However, this weekend I will be adding more to the bunch thanks to this AWESOMELY cute tutorial on a layered and dressed up version of the classic tutu!

Recently we went to the zoo and visited the Butterfly Greenhouse and the girls LOVED seeing all the different kinds of "Flutterbys" that there are. I think that this pretty Paper Butterfly Collage will look great in their room!

While we are talking about butterflies, check out this easy peasy DIY Potterybarn Knockoff Butterfly Mobile!

Even though we have been spending a lot of time outside, sometimes it is just too hot and we bring the outside in for play. I love love love these natural looking wood blocks! They actually look like sticks!

Since I have one little girl who is a tomboy and another one who is a pink-wearing princess lover, sometimes it is hard to get them to agree on a book that they like. I have a feeling that The Secret Lives of Princesses will fit the bill just fine! These aren't your ordinary, wait for the Prince to rescue me, type of gals!

Anyone with little ones knows that all of a sudden there is a plethora of mini furniture as well. How about some brightly painted, AFFORDABLE, heirloom quality rocking chairs? AND they are HANDMADE!!! Check them out here!

Many of our lunchtime meals when I have all of my tribe are Muffin Tin Meals. It means a lot of variety, usually no utensils, and I can do themes. How about an Under the Sea themed lunch? Mmmmm.....

Finally, need a craft to go with that yummy water themed lunch mentioned above? How about making some Mermaid Peg Dolls?! Fun fun fun... have a great day everyone!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Going to Extremes

Everyone knows that birth is a natural part of life and is a rite of passage for women. But most people do not realize how calculated, un-natural, and business-like having a baby is in modern America. Things like inducing labor for convenience, scheduled c-sections to accommodate schedules, and treating pregnancy like a grave illness instead of the natural process that it is has led our country to have the highest infant mortality rates of any industrialized county in the world. Not to mention that the number of c-sections is climbing higher and higher as doctors take away the ability to offer a woman a totally 100% natural childbirth.

Up until a few weeks ago I was going to have my 3rd c-section, scheduled on December 1st. Up until a few weeks ago, I went along with what my OB said, didn't question her decision on how I was going to have this new little girl, and although I had hoped to try for a VBA2C (vaginal birth after 2 c-sections) I blindly accepted her refusal to discuss it. Then I saw The Business of Being Born.

Words can't describe how much this movie has changed my outlook on my two previous c-sections and my expectations for this upcoming birth. All I know is that all pregnant women should see this movie, it is that good and makes that much of an impact. Many times during the movie I paused it to talk with Klint about what was going on, to just really think about how the movie was making me feel, and about what I could do about it for my future.

The conclusion that I came up with is that if I hadn't been induced for non-medical reasons with Gabby, way too early and before my body was ready, I wouldn't have had that first c-section that has led me down this road. And even though I have an OB who wouldn't let the "V" in VBA2C leave my mouth before cutting me off and giving me a stern "No",  no one can force me into another c-section if I can possible deliver normally.

So what is the plan now? Well I have an appointment with a midwife in an adjoining city who believes that birth is powerful, hard, and something that women CAN do without all the medical intervention that goes on in  maternity wards today. I don't know for sure if I am a candidate for a VBA2C, but if she listens to me and gives me concrete reasons as to why it is or isn't a good idea, that will be good enough for me.
My goal is to have a 100% natural waterbirth, in a calm environment, with as little medical intervention as possible.

I know that other women have done it, with more c-sections under their belt than me. Here is the difference between what happened with my previous births and what is going to happen. (Minus Klint in the tub or the home part... I can just imagine the cats meowing at me while trying to give birth!) My appointment in on Monday, I will keep you all posted! Keep your fingers crossed!

Cesarean vs. VBAC: A Dramatic Difference from Alexandra Orchard on Vimeo.

my siggy

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

At Least It Was for the Greater Good...

Hello! I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend! What a crazy and eventful one here, as always!

On Saturday we went to a Luau Birthday Party at a friend's house. I have never taken the girls to a pool party because Gabby isn't a good swimmer yet and AJ is so little, but since it was a family invited event and I knew that there would be lots of kids and adults, plus the birthday girl is a good friend of Gabby's, we went. It was a blast, the food was great, the company was even better, and it was a lot of fun to see the girls swimming and having a good time. Gabby had so much fun that even though her lips were blue and her teeth were chattering a mile a minute it was really really hard to get her out of the pool!

Once I got Gabby out and drying off I was standing by the fence with some other parents watching the other kids playing around. This was an in-ground pool with a low fence around it, very safe and secure. However, as all of us parents know, things happen. 

As I was standing there, happily chatting away, I heard the mom next to me say to herself, "No, don't hang onto her honey, grab the side". I looked closer and noticed two of Gabby's friends, sisters- one of which is a pretty adventurous and decent swimmer and the other a beginner, struggling in the deep end. The one who could swim had a panicked look on her face and was pushing her sister down, trying to right herself. In that slow motion, adrenaline-filled way, I saw them both go under, and then come back up. The older sister yelled, "I can't swim!" and in that instant I was in the pool. I didn't even think, just reacted because I knew that there was a serious problem in the back of my head.

Well I got them out with the help of their mom, everyone was safe and sound. They were scared and shaken up, but no real harm done. Once I was out, checked on the girls, I realized something... my Motorola Droid was in my pocket! OMG!!! I gasped, pulled it out, and right away took out the battery and started drying it out.  (Anyone who has a smartphone knows that these are not just phones, they are GPS, small laptops, music players, and video players all in one beautiful little device!)

Needless to say I now have a $600 paperweight, but at least it is destroyed for a good reason and not the other bone-headed reasons that I have lost phones to in the past. (Like leaving it on the hood of the car until it gets flung onto a 4 lane highway!)

LESSON LEARNED: When at a pool party leave the pricey phone IN THE HOUSE!

my siggy

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July!!!

Be happy and safe!!
Go here if you are having a party and need some cute printables for tonight!
See you all tomorrow!

my siggy

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Making a Makeover Easy as Pie!

Yesterday and last night I was busy as a little bee making over a wonderfully cute blog for a fellow December 2010 mommy. Little did I know last week when I announced that Amy won the blog makeover that she had actually found my blog from and that she was a mommy to 3 lovely little girls with a new baby on the way as well. Needless to say I have had a blast making over her blog and actually gave her a total makeover from top to bottom!

Here is what I did for her:
1. Picked out a new background (check out
2. Designed the following elements: header, labels, blog button, footer graphic, signature, post divider, picture frames, and comment graphic.
3. Installed and rearranged all the elements
4. Adjusted font, font colors, blog width, and other basic elements to flow with all the other designs
5. Created and installed Favicon

I think that my favorite part of the whole process what picking out the background because that gave me my color palette,  theme, and general feel for the rest of the designs. After that creating the header was a really good learning experience.  I took my inspiration from the header that Nienie has on her blog, but of course gave it the Connie-twist! 

So where did I begin with doing this makeover? If you follow these steps them it should be pretty easy for you too, and there is so much room for customization that no two blogs will look alike! *** The following How To is ONLY for Blogger users.... Wordpress and other blog platforms have their own way of design. 

1. Choose a background that sets the tone for the rest of the blog... the new Design feature on Blogger is really good for this or you can go where I did, here.  TIP: If you are going to have lots of graphics, then choose the 3 Column layout from Shabby Blogs!
2. Create your header. You can do this lots of different ways and don't even have to have Photoshop! Scrapblog, Picnik, etc will all get the job done.  Tomorrow I will show you how I created the header like Amy's!
3. Make a list of all the elements you want on your blog, this includes the following:
                        ♥ Post Divider
                        ♥ Footer Graphic
                        ♥ Widget Labels
                        ♥ Signature
                        ♥ Decorative Graphics like the photos of my girls
                        ♥ Blog Button
                        ♥ Favicon (the little icon next to your site's URL)
4. Once you know what you need then either use ready made graphics or make your own. Many times I find something with the general feel of what I am looking for then alter it to fit my design. Using a photo program it is pretty easy to just blend out the words in the original graphic and replace it with your own.
5. Save the Favicon for last and make it an element that really connects someone to your blog. 
6. As you install all of these elements check back to see how the blog is flowing. 
7. Finally, go into the Design feature that Blogger has and adjust the font, font color, widths, etc for the basic aspects of your blog.

There ya go! Tomorrow I will show you how I created the header above using Photoshop CS4!!
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