Saturday, August 20, 2016

Things on my Home Birth List that aren't on my Midwife's List

Typically when you give birth at home your midwife gives you a list of Home Birth Supplies. On it are things like: a heating pad, trash bags, bowls, 3 sets of sheets, 10 towels, a birth kit...

However, I've added a few things to my list and this is what I find additionally necessary to have on hand for birth and soon after...

5 brand new wash rags and 2 new bath towels... new because no one wants a scratchy old nubby washrag on your forehead during the throws of labor ... get some that are soft and new. Plus, it's unlikely they will "get ruined"... just wash them!

Stuff to make my ideal post birth meal... Smoothy, egg and peanut butter toast. Best ever!!!  And easy for a tired daddy or midwife to make at any hour!

A dimmer switch in your main birthing area/s... just trust me on this one! It's genius. We have a dimmer switch in our bathroom and bedroom and it comes in handy for late night nursing or a-hem... other things!

A strawed water bottle... I like these >>>>>

A yoga pad... this is handy for if you have to kneel. We have concrete floors and it is nice for those kneeling around our tub helping me too.

A "daddy labor do list"... Look here.  So during my last birth I made this list and felt like my "organizing/nesting tendencies" might have gone overboard. But, the morning after the birth I looked over and saw the emergency hospital transfer bag sitting by the front door and I nearly started to cry... my husband had followed the list!!! And when I asked him about it his response was, "I was just so glad to have something to go by and know what I ought to do and to know how you wanted things, so I wasn't guessing or forgetting things." Later my midwife requested a copy to share with her other clients... she said, "This might just save some marriages." 

Pre-made thank you and sustaining supplies for your birth team... I don't usually have long drawn out births. So I usually make my team a supply mug. It contains: new mug, thank you card, honey straws,  coffee, tea, bag of almonds and directions to where other food is. I don't think they even made themselves coffee last time during my 4 hour birth, but they did take them home! 

A fan... even in the winter it's nice not to be overheating. They will turn if off once baby is soon to come and warm up the room. 

Music... or not. I always make a playlist, but usually have them turn it off soon after because "it bugs me." 

Easy to digest comfort food for during labor and a few frozen nourishing meals for after... Early in labor I always try to eat a meal, if only to get something in me to help me through. Usually it's something like chicken noodle soup. After I have my post birth meal (above) but having something else is nice too... if you freeze a few meals just get one out (or put it on daddy's to do list) and it will likely be thawed and ready to eat post birth!

Extra TP, paper towels, trash bags, ziplock baggies, dish soap, laundry soap, shampoo, toothpaste and other basics... Because who has time to go get basics when you have a new baby to snuggle? Stock up! And don't forget to splurge on PAPER PLATES AND PLASTIC CUPS! Because, its nice to take a break from dishes too!

Herbal sitz bath... During my last birth my assisting midwife made a huge pot of the herbals sitz bath (that came in my birth kit) and steeped it up on the stove. On her way out she said, "Don't forget the bath tea is on your stove in the big pot." The next day I put it in a gallon milk jug and used it in my baths and mostly in my peri bottle to wash myself off with... it rocked!

Happy home birth and laying in! 

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Names for New Baby

Recently, we had our big ultrasound and got to see our baby. 

We decided via unanimous decision to let it remain a mystery what the baby is... Boy or girl. Everyone is in favor of getting a brother, except Thea who will not even entertain the idea of it being anything but another sister! Time will tell. 

One thing is clear, we all think it's the most precious baby there is! 

We've been taking name ideas and here are the children's ideas that they want added to the master list! Girl names are first... 

Thea - 5 and a half 
Junior Charlie (she was insistent on this combination in this order despite reasoning from older siblings that it made no sense)

Cora - almost 8
Beatrice "Honey Bea"

Eli - 9 

Allan - 9 and a half

Addie - 11 
Lucille "Lucy" or "Lu"
Timothy "Timmy" Junior

So ... baby "Chuck" or "Honey Bea" might be joining us soon! 

Thursday, July 28, 2016

SOTW #4: Modern Era Online Audio Book List



Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea - Jules Vern:

Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland - Lewis Caroll:


This Country of Ours - By H.E. Marshall

The Story of Mankind - By Hendrick Van Loon
 Chapter 63 (A New World: A Review of Industrial Revolution) -

History Plays for Grammar Grades - Mary Ella Lyng

Historic Adventure Tales from History - By Rupert S Holland 

A School History of the Great War (One) - By Albert E McKinley

The Boy’s Life of Abraham Lincoln - By Helen Nicolay

Memories of Childhoods Slavery Days - By Annie L Burton 

Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl - By Harriet Jacobs

The Adventures of Buffalo Bill - By William F Cody

Monday, July 25, 2016

Whoo Whoo?

We are feathering our nest again... A little owl is due to hatch in late 2016! 

Friday, June 10, 2016

Whitty Had a Little Lamb

Poor little Whitty has been sick and fussy. 
Basically she did nothing but cry all day or lay on me. 

She did stop however when I asked if she wanted to go see the "baa's". Since getting lambs for camp she's been totally enthralled with them! 

Here we even see a fleeting smile! She also played with the hose for a bit. 

But then she wore out and needed to go take a nap. Summertime fevers are the pits! 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

A Day of Contrasts and Poop of All Kinds

I don't have a photo for today. 
But, many exist in my mind. 

Woke up to poop. Poop every where which made me cry a horribly pathetic and selfish cry. That's how it began. 

Listened to a friend's heart. 

Watched my man work. 
Learned to drive a tractor.

A child soiled themselves for no explainable reason... And stunk up the car on the drive home. I managed not to cry or get (too) irritated. 

Watched two people join their lives together in marriage. Cried then too. 

Watched two people bring home their long lost sons... And family made in an instant. Cried a whole lot. 

I see how I'd much rather cry about the right things in life. 

Not about what I think I deserve. Not what I want. Not about upholding my rights. Rights to a poop free life.

But about the sheer wonder and goodness and humility in accepting that we are given what we get. Straight from the good and loving and kind hand of God!

Life isn't about what we get (like cleaning up other people's crap) but about getting to do the "poopy" things with those put around us. Like an 11 yo who sees her mamas discouragement and gets out a rag and wipes down a poop coated crib not because she's told but because she wants to help her mama.

Life's about wiping up each others filth... In marriage, as friends, our kids and in adoption. And doing it without being concerned with our own rights. Doing it gladly. Doing it because we can and because it was "given" to us. 

Considering this day. It was wholly a failure on my account. But wholly a victory for the work that it produced with in me. So many gifts were laid in my hands. Some filthy poop. Some opportunities to see what lies beyond the filth of this grimey world and to see the stunning beauty that lays ahead! 

"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God." - Romans 8:18-21

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

My Heavy Jar

Being a mama is a very isolating thing for me at times. Even in my own home and around my people.

I'm always biting my tongue and guarding this and that. That I find myself so completely blocked up that I realize that I'm hiding myself just in order to maintain, survive and keep functioning. 

Hiding from my kids, husband and the world. Trying to maintain.

My daily life isn't robotic, institutional... but I do, with out a doubt place a far too high emphasis of productivity, management and basically even just trying to keep on top of laundry and piles and bills.

Recently, I realize this mechanism of mine is nothing more than a idol of sorts. 
It's an idol of control... whether well intentioned or not.
It's an idol of pride... which is just ugly and sinful at it's core.

In addition, to this I tend to get easily distracted... not by my sweet children or by a moment or event of life but by things that fleetingly "fill me" with a dash of approval on things like Facebook or Instagram. But like any shallow thing, it's never filling for long. 

I was reading about the woman at the well not that long ago and one thing stuck with me... 
Here's a woman doing her chores, undoubtably very intent on getting her task done, a very monotonous, daily and burdensome task... and she encounters the Lord. 

After her interactions with Jesus it says, "the woman left her water jar and went away into the town and said to the people, 'Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?" 

That part, "left her water jar" has been a reoccurring and nagging thought for me. She left her burdens, she left her monotonous duties, she left her preconceived ideas about her needs, she left what she had in reserve for herself, and considered it absolutely obsolete considering the good things she found in Christ! 

The very water she needed for her daily allotment of cooking, cleaning, bathing, sustenance was worthy of forgetting and abandoning so that she could run to do the will of the Lord. 

Laundry must be done. Dishes, cooking, cleaning, wiping of baby bottoms... it's all good... even holy. But, it's not the point. Doing it, checking it off, managing it, mechanizing and mastering it is NOT the point. Keeping the plates spinning... 

Later on Jesus continues talking about work and "duties"... he tells the disciples, "My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work..." He expounds and goes on about how the work of harvest is near... and how some planted and sowed and others will reap... but it's all labor. And how both are brought together because "the sower and the reaper may rejoice together" because "they gathered fruit for eternal life." 

So poetic. But, in it I see that I'm very much a sower. At least right now. Motherhood is a sower's job. All day long... seeding, tending, weeding... repeat. It's easy to feel as if you are a slave or a slave to it when you don't see the harvest... or when you don't lift of your eyes beyond your row... or when you don't lay down your burdening water jar and "do the will of the him who sent us."

But, it's all a part of this thing. 

Laying down my jar now. 

Digging my hands into the dirt and feeling it's coolness. 

Realizing that this endless sowing is also going to end in rejoicing!