Thursday, December 24, 2009

It's Snowing!

Who said they wanted a white Christmas? Earlier in the week the weather and news folks were saying we were going to have 10-12 inches of snow today. They predicted we would wake up to all that snow. Of course, as a nurse manager who is on call (all the time) on holidays, including this day, I was a little worried. I do have a tendency to worry about everything though.

So, when I woke up at 7:15am (okay, I didn't wake up by myself, my daughter woke me up) and there was NO snow, I called their bluff. I just knew they were exaggerating. That's what meteorologists do. They get all excited about this crazy-ass weather.

At 7:15 it was drizzling slightly. Some sleet. It was above freezing, so it was just pretty slushy. I thought we were good. We had 2 family events planned for today. I have seen my parents and grandma every single Christmas Eve since I was born. I was excited for the day. Our dd was so excited about the day!

About an hour later, it started snowing. Now, 9 hours later....it's STILL snowing!

Well, here's to hoping everyone is safe and sound tonight! Merry Christmas Eve!

Friday, November 13, 2009

So tired...

I really want to write something today. I really do. I even tried to apply for a position at the Examiner (www.examiner.com). But, and it's a BIG but...I'm so freaking tired! What is up with me?

I didn't even go to work today, had a conference, then came home. But, now, I'm just so tired.

Agh! It's frustrating!

Monday, November 2, 2009

My funny kid

I know everyone wants to brag on their kid. Really, don't we ALL have the best kid ever? Well, tonight, as challenging as my little child was, she made me laugh!

She is getting so funny! She's just like her daddy. She's very determined, independent, and smart. After a very challenging evening at gymnastics (from her pointing her finger at me telling me "no" to her running around like crazy, not paying attention), we came home a a great dinner of spaghetti. It was yummy! Well, she had spaghetti all over the place. Greg came in to the kitchen to discuss whether we really need to give her a bath. She knows what a bath is & she LOVES her baths. He asked, "Do you think we need to give an ath-bay tonight?"

Yep, we speak pig latin. We're not that fast of spellers yet! She said "I want an ath-bay." I wondered if she really knew what an ath-bay was. So, I asked her. The little stinker says, "Yes, an ath-bay is a bath." She was so matter-of-fact. Wow.

I am paying for my husband's raising! Thanks Greg!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Savings!

Just a quick quick post to say I saved over $30 at Target today! I used coupons for nearly everything I bought! So proud of myself for saving money for my family.

On a side note...I hope to have something very exciting happening in my life very soon. And no, it's not a pregnancy. :) Wish it was!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Going Green. And being frugal.

I'm on a mission. First and foremost (but not at the expense of my or my family's health), I want to save money. I want to be frugal. But, like I said, not at the health of myself or my family. And, I want to be green (kinda goes hand in hand with the health thing, right?). Here are some things (just a few), we've done to save money and try to be green.

1. Buy as many of A's clothes at re-sales. Just Between Friends is a new lifesaver! The important thing to remember is that you can still get some clothes cheaper & new than some of those designer kids clothes at a resale shop. My most recent purchase included a pair of pajamas for 50 cents! Isn't that crazy?

2. Use what I have. I know that sounds crazy, but I have been the queen of buying things just because I wanted them. So, I'd have three different kinds of shampoo. Really? That's not necessary. It saves money for me to only buy what I need. I have so many bottles of lotion, it puts Bath & Body Works to shame.

3. Breastfeed. I had to throw this one in here. I heard someone say they spent $100/month in formula. Not sure if that sounds right, but it's a lot of money. Twelve hundred dollars a year. Plus bottle. Plus nipples. And all those fancy bottles. Liners. Nipples that (don't) look like my nipple. Changing nipple hole sizes (on a side note, I never got that, since my nipples didn't really change after my daughter was born).

4. Extended breastfeeding. I can proudly say I never had to purchase a gallon of whole milk. When I was pregnant (before I committed to extended breastfeeding), I used to fret over the thought of buying all those gallons of whole milk. I would never drink whole milk and my husband certainly wouldn't. Well, I never had to do it!

5. My newest....making my own laundry detergent. It's super cheap & there are no harsh chemicals. What else can I say? I love it!

6. Using cold water when washing dishes.

7. No caller ID or call-waiting. Saved us $9/month.

So, what's your best frugal yet green tip? I'd love to hear them!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Is it time?

Hopefully if you know me in real life, you'll respect me and what I'm about to say.....my job is getting old!

I'm a nurse manager in a large urban tertiary care hospital. I'm the manager of 2 large, high-acuity nursing units. I've been a manager for 3.5 years. For the most part, I love the people I work with. I love thinking that maybe I made the difference in the life of an employee and better, yet, a patient.

Yet, I've never worked more. Never worked harder. Never felt less appreciated. Never felt like I made less of a difference. Never felt like I needed to work more. Never felt like I sacrificed my family so much. Never.

So, I've been thinking. I miss patients. I miss teaching (patients and students). In a way, I miss leaving my work at work. While I was never a nurse who could truly leave work at work, the manager stuff is with me all the time!

Here's the thing....I really believe in the philosophy, mission, and vision of the hospital I work for. They're doing great things. They really try to do what's best for the patient. I couldn't work for another hospital.

What am I to do? Teach? No jobs. Work on the floor? I'm too scared to step down. There is another job I'd like, but it's not open yet. Go back to school? Hmmmm, the eternal student. Yep, that's me.

I'm thinking about it. For real this time.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

What to Read...

I have this horrible habit of starting multiple books at once. Last December I started the Twilight series. I was very disciplined in reading those (if you've read them, you know it really doesn't take much discipline to keep ready). I had the pleasure/task of reading them back-to-back. Now that I've read all of them, I have so many books I want to read. Here are some I'm working on or about to start --

The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Pre-Schoolers -- I'm actually about half-way through this one. A is co-sleeping. She still nurses to sleep. I would love to be able to put her in bed & say night-night. Two reasons for this -- it just sounds luxurious (doesn't it? or is it just me?) and we want baby #2. I realize baby #2 will need me to help him/her sleep. I just want it to be easier for little A to go down (and stay down, I might add). I'd be perfectly happy with a family, but I am married to a wonderful man who is not fond of many children in our bed! I have faith Elizabeth Pantley is going to help us through these times! Next baby, I'll read the No-Cry Sleep Solution for Babies.

Birthing From Within-- This is one of those I started, then started something else. I've heard great things about BFW. An interesting point, Pam England calls all births, even cesareans, births. The women of ICAN have a tendency to disagree. However, I believe (only from Joni Nichols' experiences) that cesareans can be births. My hope is one day they are. Anyway, I digress. I don't want my next to be a cesarean. I'm planning on VBACing with baby #2, and I recognize I need the much of the work that is done in this book.

Ina May's Guide to Childbirth -- Ina May does a phenomenal job of explaining how there are no 2 births that are the same. I've read many of the birth stories in the first half and some of the 2nd half. The second half talks about birth and what is "normal." If you've not heard of Ina May, you really should check out her statistics. She and the other midwives on The Farm, have an INCREDIBLY low intervention rate, including an unbelievably (in current American obstetrics mind, that is) c-section rate. I want to know how...so I'm reading this book when I'm done with The No-Cry Sleep Solution...or after Birthing From Within.

Henci Goer's Thinking Woman's Guide to Birth -- Haven't started this one, but I own it! I've heard great things about it.

Silent Knife -- This book is about c-sections and VBAC. Nancy Wainer Cohen & Lois Estner have written a classic. Again, I started it, a while back, and now I need to finish it!

Pushed -- I must say, I can't believe I have not read my SIGNED copy of Pushed! Jennifer Block is a genious!

There are also some breastfeeding books I'd like to read -- Mothering Your Nursing Toddler is one I own & have started. There is a book about gentle weaning....contemplating reading it!

Well, then there are those fiction books I'd like to read -- The Friday Night Knitting Club, My Sister's Keeper, and the Time Traveler's Wife. Hmmmm, which one first?

I must also say that I get most of my birth books on the ICAN website (www.ican-online.org). Not only do I get a 10% discount for being a member (ask me how), but I'm helping the most excellent cause!

Happy Reading!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Just Posting

It has been forever since I've written anything. I'm not a good blogger. So, for those of you, if there are any of you, reading this, here's what's new in my world....

A is getting so big! She is nearly potty-trained! It's been the EASIEST phase of her life so far. We just put panties on her & she goes potty! Many times she goes to bathroom and potties all by herself. She can even wash her hands all by herself. I'm so blessed!

We're still nursing. Some days I don't think this phase will ever end. As much as I want her to self-wean, I'm nearing being done. I'm almost ready to call it quits. I know I said I wouldn't call it quits, but 28 months is a long time! I'm pretty damn proud of myself for what I've given my child. I remember so clearly the day when I thought I'd be happy with a couple of weeks. I remember the day I decided quitting was quitting (well, almost the day...more like the time frame). I remember the night we brought A home from the hospital. She was still taking a lot of formula, as my milk had not fully come in yet. We woke up with tiny bottles all over our bedroom. I remember thinking how ridiculous that was. My boobs were supposed to produce milk. We were not supposed to have bottles all over our bedroom. I know people think I'm crazy since I'm still nursing my almost 2 1/2 year old, so call me crazy. It's healthy!

We're still co-sleeping. I love co-sleeping. I love feeling A next to me. I love feeling her soft skin on my arm. I love the way she snuggles in my back. It would be nice if she could sleep in her own bed, but we're working on it!

So, what are we working on? The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Pre-Schoolers. I love Elizabeth Pantley! I've had the book forever, but I'm just now reading it and applying the principles. I'm thinking if I could get A to sleep without the boob, our lives will be different! I hate to say better, because what if she doesn't wean soon. Our lives won't be worse. I do believe that everything happens for a reason. I'm along for the ride.

I am here to make sure A grows up to be a strong, smart woman, the woman God wants her to be. That's my job. To raise her right. If I do what is right for me, for her, for Greg, and for our family, I will raise her right.

If that means nursing till 3, I'm doing the right thing.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Home

Not much to blog about...just wanting to post something.

We've been in our new home for THREE whole weeks! It feels great despite boxes that still need to be unpacked.

It only takes 10 minutes for to get to work...depsite being more than twice the distance as the apartment. It took 10 minutes to go 2 miles. Now it takes 20 minutes to go 7 miles, or something like that.

I actually get home earlier. Because I don't do any backtracking when I pick up Addison.

I don't hear sirens. Buses. People. Or anything really. I love the silence. We did hear an ambulance the other day. Greg ran outside to see what was going on. We really only did that sometimes in the apartment, mostly just to take a look or let Addison see the ambulance. This time, we really wondered what happened. Big different.

Even though my drive is farther, I don't have as many choices for nasty/yummy (i.e. donuts, pastries, & coffee) on the way to work.

Addison loves her new house. She can run around. She even plays all by herself.

We're all much happier and relaxed! Yea!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Happy Cesarean Awareness Month...Happy?

So, April is Cesarean Awareness Month. Do you say "happy" cesarean awareness month?

There's really nothing happy about my c-section. However, I absolutely want more people to be aware of it. If only doctors were aware of the HORRIBLE side effects of cesareans, they might (just might) be more cautious in making the first cut.

I believe everyone should be aware of cesareans and their impact. If only I would have known their impact before the cut. If only my husband would have known, he could have been prepared and better able to support me. If my mom would have known, she might have been more sympathetic in the early days.

I could go on with the "if onlys" for a long time, but I won't.

The important question is....are you aware?

The BEST resource for cesarean awareness is ICAN. They saved my life. Check them (us) out -- www.ican-online.com.

ICAN is about educating, preventing c-sections, and helping women (and their families) recover from c-sections.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Michelle Duggar Rocks!

I wanted to post this last week, but never got around to it. Tonight, as I am watching "18 and Counting" I couldn't wait any longer.

Michelle Duggar is an amazing woman! First, I do love watching the Duggars. Ironically, I'm really nothing like the Duggars. I'm not conservative at all. I don't wear skirts. I watch (way too much) TV. And on and on....

But, really, they are an amazing family. I've always admired the fact they are out of debt. For a family of any size, being out of debt is truly incredible. Michelle is always so calm, cool, and collected. I can't imagine. Sometimes I feel so frazzled with 1 child.

A while back, Jim Bob talked about about VBAC. Michelle has had 3 c-sections out of 14 deliveries (2 sets of twins, 1 was c-section). Jim Bob & Michelle both are advocates of VBAC. It's really amazing to have very respectable people who are huge advocates of something some people see as controversial (by the way, VBAC should not be controversial).

Then, last week and again tonight, Michelle is BREASTFEEDING on TV! She just straps on her "my brest friend" and a hooter hider (or something similar) and walks around breastfeeding. I love it!

What an amazing family. I get so irritated when people wonder why they have so many kids. First, it's none of your business. Second, they are out of debt. They can afford all of their children. Third, they, but probably most importantly, they take great care of their children. The children are being raised in an excellent home. They will be contributing members to society. So, if you have a problem with the Duggars -- take a look in the mirror.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Toddler-Hood

I am so loving having a toddler! This past weekend we went to Sesame Street Live. To see little A sing and dance and smile at all the characters....it was so sweet! She LOVES to dance. The girl moved nearly the entire 1 1/2 hours! I was exhausted when we left.

These days, you can actually have a conversation with her...mostly about boogers and things like that, but it's still a conversation. The first day it happened, I was so in shock! You can ask questions. She answers. It's amazing!

Last week, we did buy a potty for her. We're not pressing anything. We just wanted to have it around. Tonight, when I came home from work, I went to the bathroom. She went with me & wanted to take off her jeans and diaper. She just sat there with me. But, you could tell she thought she was a big girl. Grandma Smith bought her some of the cutest red panties with ruffles on the bottom. We're really trying to make them sound special. They are so stinkin' cute!

Now, we've always let her watch You Tube on our phones. Some may think we're crazy, but we are! So, tonight she went to Jingle Bells on Cullens ABCs. First, let me back-up by saying Cullens ABCs is the absolute best thing on earth. Cullen is this pre-school director. She has posted TONS of videos on You Tube. Nursery rhymes, Christmas songs, stories...it's wonderful. See, when A was little (well, smaller than now), we really didn't know all the words to Itsy Bitsy Spider. Yes, it's true. I googled it and that's how I found Cullen's ABCs. Check it out -- www.cullensabcs.com. Back to the story. She was singing Jingle Bells -- dancing and singing, doing all the motions. It was so funny. So, when it was "night night" time, she could watch one more video. I said "find Jingle Bells". She did. She scrolled right to it (okay, the second time). It was amazing.

I love that little girl more than anything on earth! I think I have laughed every single day since she was born. Despite the tantrums, the crying, the fussiness, she's the best thing ever!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I heart ICAN!

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1880665,00.html

I found ICAN very shortly after my c-section with little A. I knew something just wasn't right when I came home. I was "one of those" moms who never even dreamed of getting cut open to have a baby. But, after a long induction due to pre-eclampsia, my daughter was delivered my cesarean section. I wanted nothing, as far as labor goes; yet I got it all -- cytotec, AROM (artifical rupture of membranes), magnesium, epidural, pitocin, then the knife. I know this may sound harsh to some people, and it is harsh. After almost 21 months, my abdomen is still numb and tingly. It's not fun. If it were not for ICAN, I would have suffered postpartum depression. I know I would have. I wanted to crawl in a hole and hibernate. When my dd was about 12 hours old I realized I had not really seen her. I unwrapped her. She cried. My dh & I fought. And fought. And fought. It's painful, not only physically, but emotionally, to have a c-section. Who cares that I have an intact perineum. I don't. I have scar in my heart and on my abdomen.

So, when I found ICAN, I was delighted. There were other people like me. There were women...and maybe even some men...who get it. So, when the opportunity to help came up, I did what I could (of course, I wish I could have done more). I'm proud to say I was part of this project. It makes me so happy to know I might have helped someone in doing this.

Everyday women are denied the right to birth their baby the way they want. Women are told how and when to give birth. It's unfair. It's unethical. You can do something. I did. You can be a part of the solution. I am.

Here's the ICAN website. The women here, the support, the resources....they changed my life....

www.ican-online.org

Monday, February 9, 2009

What am I doing?

I just want to say this -- I hate macs.
I know that apple is "all that" but I just can't work on them! Okay, maybe I'll get used to it...see I'm sitting here on my PC, with my laptop (mac) open, trying to get something done on the laptop. Hence, it's no successful, so I'm blogging on the PC.

What a waste of my time.....

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Up and Down

All day...when I thought A was doing good, she'd crump...cry, cry, cry, whine, whine, whine. Then, she'd perk right up. I suppose this is the road to recovery.

Luckily, she realized Motrin doesn't taste so bad. This morning she even said "tank you" after taking the motrin. Then, I some how tricked her in to taking her lortab tonight. It was the first time she'd had it today. I think she'll feel a lot better in the morning!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Surgery

Little A had her tonsils and adenoids out yesterday. For most people, this is not a big deal. However, there were a couple of issues that made the decision to have this done extremely difficult for me.

First, even though I am a nurse, I don't totally trust the medical profession. Especially surgeons. Surgeons were educated and trained to operate. If you go to a surgeon for a problem, they fix it with surgery. So, when our doctor (the ENT) recommended a T&A, I had my doubts. I thought he just wanted to do surgery because he is a surgeon. I wouldn't commit right away. I wanted to know the opinion of A's doctor...a family medicine doctor, not a surgeon at all. He said go ahead. See, A has (hopefully had) moderate sleep apnea. While her spells of apnea were not big (although almost 1 an hour), her sleep efficiency sucked. It was 75%, it should have been greater than 90%. Her respiratory disturbance index was 9.5 and it should have been less than 1.

Second, her tonsils weren't big, according to the ENT. When I did decide to schedule the surgery, the nurse said that the notes said they weren't big. This only seemed to confirmed by concerns from above...surgeons operate. I did what any mother would do -- I prayed and prayed. I needed a sign or something. Not that God always gives signs. But He has given me knowledge (being a nurse and assessment skills). Plus, call it being a mom, or maybe God helped my gut feeling, but I had one. Even though all the evidence said "her tonsils aren't big" and my logic said "there could be something else" my gut was screaming "GET THEM OUT!".

A couple of weeks ago, I was napping with A. She usually sleeps in a shirt, but for some reason (hmmm, God?) she was only in a diaper. I got the sign I needed. She started having intercostal retractions. Retractions are when your abdominal and/or chest wall muscles have to work so hard to breathe, you see "dips" between the ribs (intercostal), under the ribs (subcostal), etc. (Okay, so I think all of those are right!). Anyway, retractions are a sign of respiratory distress.

The night before surgery was horrible. Little A had a sore back or something. She fell the night before, so I think it might have been sore. She hardly slept. I hardly slept. I thought this was a sign we should cancel. But, I didn't. And, I couldn't nurse my all-night nurser after 3:45 am. That was hard, but I only had to say no once. She does usually like to nurse right before I get up. It is really hard to say no to a cute little baby saying "milk, milk".

The morning of surgery was smooth. Once we got to the hospital (the one where I work, so she didn't suspect a thing), things went extremely smoothly. The first case cancelled, so we didn't have to wait at all. We were supposed to go at 8:45 and we were now scheduled for 8 am. Everyone from the anesthesiologist (Dr. Y, loved him!) to the ENT (Dr. D) to the nurses and the CRNA rocked.

I got to go to the OR with A. I wasn't planning, but decided I would go back. She went to sleep in my arms. It wasn't scary or anything. Mostly because, I was under the impression A would be on a ventilator (letting a machine breathe for her, which is necessary with enough anesthesia). Dr. Y said that he doesn't to that. He puts a tube in her mouth, but she's breathing...basically he creates an airway for her. Because of this, I totally relaxed.

Dr. D said he'd be done in 20 minutes. Not a second past 20 minutes, he was out talking to us. He said her tonsils were much larger than he originally thought. And, he said her adenoids were taking up 100% of her airway...or something like that. Whew! I know that sound terrible, but what a relief. We didn't do surgery for nothing.

We spent the day & night in the hospital. A was groggy most of the day. About 5pm, she stood up and started jumping in her bed! She was ready to go! The night was fair (better than the sleep study) but not great. However, she has fallen asleep already, but who knows how long that'll last. I'm not holding my breath. :)

I hear it takes about 2 weeks to notice any difference. I do know that A has had difficulty breathing during sleep for her entire life. She snored. She sweated at night. Tossed and turned. Fussed. Never slept through the night (less than 10 times in almost 20 months). I just hope that she heals well and she is able to breathe at night!

I'm glad we did it. But, more than anything, I'm glad to be home. Resting peacefully in our own space...without the germs of the hospital. Ugh! Grossness.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Comments

No one has every commented on this blog. I'm not even sure anyone is reading it. So, I suppose it's just for me and that's okay. Perhaps someone, someday will stumble across it. It'll never be one of the best blogs out there, but it's still mine and I'm okay with that.