Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Time Banking- WOW!

What a great concept- Volunteer your time, keep a record of the time spent, and cash it in for help, services or products!

Milwaukee is just starting up a Time banking system. I'm extremely excited about the project. Need pet sitter? Check the time bank! Need a wall painted or to learn to knit? Check the time bank! Chances are that someone is offering to do those things. The beauty of time banking is that you don't need to be able to provide the skills your helper is looking for in exchange- they get time hours for the time they spend helping you, which they can redeem for the help THEY need. Time is exchanged on an hour for hour basis- my hour is worth no more than your hour. The catch, of course, is that you have to spend an equivalent number of hours helping someone else.

Organizations can sign up as well- Your PTA, School or Church can list services that they need to have provided, and you can earn time hours helping out! Earning too many time hours? there's no way you can use them all? donate some back to the church, school or your favorite charity!

There is no lower age limit, either- what a great way to get kids excited about volunteering! If your ten year old wants piano lessons, they hire a time banking teacher, and work off the lesson raking leaves or pulling weeds for your neighbor!

I'm offering Doula services via Timebank, and Baby Signs classes as well.

When I was signing up today, I listed a need for help organizing and cleaning the house, and got a response before I left the co-ordinator's house!

Interested? check out http://www.mketimeexchange.org/

Friday, November 6, 2009

On the Grow in Menomonee Falls!

I'm really excited about tomorrow's class: Under the Sea. It's an "On the Grow" class, part of the new, expanded Baby Signs Curriculum. This class is designed for pre-schoolers, ages 2-5, and includes fun signs, stories, a craft, and some movement. We'd love to see you there!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy Halloween, Baby!

I spent Halloween in the hospital- with a momma, beginning at 06:00 for an induction. She was already dilated to four- has been for weeks, so they started straight in with the Pitocin. Momma was 34 weeks, has a history of pre-term labors, and had been ruptured for 7+ days. She's also GBS+, so Pit and antibiotics were hung at the same time. She had an ultrasound at 6. to confirm Vertex- (baby was breech on Wednesday, vertex on Thursday, breech on Friday....) All was go, so at 7am, they started cranking up the Pit. It didn't take much to get her into a pattern of regular contractions, though the monitor was having a tough time picking them up, because her uterus was still fairly small, because she was pre-term. by 10:30, she was contracting every two to three minutes, in a good solid pattern. At 11, Doc arrived, checked, pronounced her "still 4 and less than 25%effaced" and placed an IUPC, which caused significant pain, and bleeding. After about an hour, mom insisted that the cath be removed, because it was not registering the contractions, and it HURT. They pulled the cath, and her contractions picked up. The resident checked and she ws "5 and 90%., and baby was at 0-+1. Nurse insisted that she shift to her side, and contractions stopped. I've never seen anything like it- pit cranked to 26, and NOTHING.Mom sent me downstairs for lunch, and got into bed from the chair. When I got back, mom was on the phone with her kids. They cranked the pit again, broke her forebag and contractions resumed with a vengeance. Mom requested meds, and they gave her one of the -phines- not morphine, but something close, I think Nalorphine.

Mom went straight into transition, within ten minutes of getting the drug. We got on the call button, and soon our nurse, the doc, and the NICU team were scrambling, because she was pushing. Baby came flying out, just before two- a lovely little girl, cried right away, the dock almost fumbled her, she came out so fast!Mom got to hold her for a few minutes before NICU took her away.

She's tiny, but a fighter. She's off of any breathing support, and off of the NG tube, and bottle feeding well. they expect her to be released soon. Mom was devastated at having to leave the hospital without her.

I'll let you know when she comes home.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Tunnel Vision & Selective Listening

Working with this latest client has given me a whole new perspective on tunnel vision as it affects doctors, nurses, and the birth community in general.

My client is a grand mulitp with a history of premature births, and several children at home. She's been hospitalized and put on bedrest, and her bag has a high leak- which would be no big deal, except that she's also a single parent, 32 weeks, and her kids are in the custody of their grandmother who wasn counting on having them for days, not weeks.

Mom had steroid injections about a month ago to promote lung development. She's been suffering through injections to prevent early labor since 17 weeks. She's unhappy, stressed, and uncomfortable. She's also extremely worried about her kids- things are not going well at grandma's house.

Her doctor had the gall to say that none of that was her concern- that her only concern was the well being of the unborn baby. She told my client that if this baby wasn't her only concern too, that she was a bad mother! She wouldn't hear the concerns that mom has that her older kids are possibly being abused at grandma's house, (she's an abuse survivor) that mom is constantly wet and uncomfortable, or any of mom's concerns about her prior history of labors-

This lady is a GOOD mom. She's worried about all of her kids- the ones that are already here and living, as well as this new one on the way. She's trying to balance their needs as well as she can, but everyone around her is telling her that she's a bad mother for not listening to them- her older kids caretakers, the school, the doctors& nurses who have played the "dead baby" card more than once. They've threatened her with cord prolapse, poor lung function, hemorrhage, her death and the baby's death to keep her in the hospital. What happened to treating the WHOLE woman- not just her pregnancy?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Baby Signs Story

Sign, Say and Play class is going well, and today we got A. and her mother back- It was great to see them again. Mom told a great story-

A usually sees her Daddy at breakfast, he stops in at lunch, and she sees him again at dinner, but this last week he's had a big project that hasn't allowed him to come in for meals. He came inside for tools, and stopped to quickly kiss A, on his way back out the door- and she began to sign "more" while saying the word "Da-Da"- Daddy took a break for an hour, to spend time with his little girl. How wonderful that she could let her parents know that she missed her Daddy and wanted him to spend more time with her!

I'll be running sample classes in October to promote the new site opening in November. I'm beginning to offer classes at Bay View Community Center, and Well Rounded Maternity Center may be moving into Milwaukee!

On the doula side of life, things have been very slow. I have only one client at the moment, due in December, but likely to go as early as mid November.

that's all for now.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Too much Excitement for a Sunday....

Boo was "missing" for about an hour this morning. He called me from church, to say there was no Sunday School, and where was Daddy?

I told him to walk home (it's not that far) and his dad will meet him and pick him up on the way. I took the dog, and started down the street to meet him and take him for ice cream, if Daddy didn't find him on his way home.

In the Meantime, his scout leader, from whom he borrowed a cell phone(his was left at home), offered him a ride home, which he took. He didn't bother to call me and let me know.

Daddy (who ALSO didn't have his cell phone with him) found me waiting at the halfway point, on the verge of calling the police. We ran home to check and see if we'd missed him, and yes, he was waiting on the doorstep. (He didn't have his house key either.)

All the worry could have been alleviated, if EITHER of them had had their cell phones with them!

Moral: if you have a cell phone, TAKE IT WITH YOU! It does no good sitting on the nightstand!

Monday, May 18, 2009

How I spent my Sunday.....


Boo decided to be helpful, and loaded up the dishwasher at the cabin. He couldn't find the dishwasher detergent right away, so he used liquid dish soap instead.

It took close to six hours to clean up the mess- because the bubbles just kept coming! Even after we cleaned out the dishwasher of what we hoped was all the soap, the bubbles kept coming. It was EXACTLY like a sitcom. I'd have been furious- if I could have stopped laughing.....

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

This is amazing- The Contraction Song

Found on Patty Ramos's Blog, This video sings for itself:

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Moms ROCK.

So, I'm home , and finally awake.

Was birthin' last night- a very sweet mom who was hoping for a VBAC*. I got the call around 9:30, and figured, since this was essentially a 1st baby, that we would have plenty of time. So I took my shower, and got my stuff together, and headed for their house. The plan was to stay home as long as she felt comfortable staying home. I was about 8 blocks from the house, when I got a second call: We're going to the hospital. I got to the house, helped them load the car, and off we went!

The HOSPITAL, bless them, had changed their policy since the last birth I attended: the front entrance is no longer avialable after 8 PM. So we had to find our way to Emergancy, only to discover that the PARKING for Emergancy is over a block away! Dad took Mom in and up to the floor, while I parked my car, and hiked over. I signed in, and headed up, to where Mom was in triage. Mom's contractions when we left home were >3 minutes apart, and long- by the time we got to the hospital, they were pretty much on top of each other, and she was working hard. They assessed her as being well into active labor, and we were assigned a room.

We were lucky- we got the ONLY tub available on the floor, and as soon as Mom was cleared to get in the water, she did. Our nurse was absolutely sweet- I need to remember to write her a note. Mom and dad were both able to climb into the tub, and we got some peace and quiet- I'd bought some LED candles (for some reason hospitals don't like open flame around all that oxygen) and we set them up, turned down the monitor, and turned on her music. She labored like that for a little over an hour, when Mom decided she was done being brave. She wanted the epidural, and she wanted it now. We called for the nurse, and got Mom out of the tub to be checked- It was too late for an epidural. Within another 20 minutes, Mom was ready to push, and all we were waiting on was her OB. whose timing was impeccable- she walked into the room as Mom was asking WHY they didn't want her to push yet!
This OB was great. She was patient, she encouraged mom to try pushing in different posititons, and after 2 1/2 hours, Baby Girl was born! She's Perfect in every way, with APGARS of 9 &9.

I'm so proud of Mom- she was certain that baby was never going to come out, and she DID it. Only another mom or doula understands what I mean, when I say : Moms ROCK.

*Vaginal Birth After Cesearean

Monday, March 23, 2009

Packing your hospital bag-

Just got a great tip from another Doula about Packing your bag for the hospital-


Ask you hubby or partner to do it. Lay out everything you want to take on the bed, and have your support person pack the actual bag. YOU are going to be too busy to be rooting around in the bag for what you want, so HE will need to know where to find it! The best way for that to happen, is for him (or her) to pack the bag.

Pack more than one bag- pack one for labor, one for postpartum, one for baby, one for support person.

Things to pack:

  • Birth Plan
  • lip balm
  • pillow cases (the smell of home)
  • toilet paper (hospital parer is scratchy!)
  • tooth paste and tooth brush
  • hair brush , and ties or clips
  • warm socks or slippers
  • rice sock
  • glasses or contacts and supplies
  • books or videos
  • music and player
  • snacks
  • juice, Popsicles
  • money for incidentals (soda, cafeteria)

Partner's Bag
  • Birth Plan
  • Cellphone and Charger
  • Camera and Charger
  • clean clothes
  • swim suit (in case she wants you in the shower or tub)
  • toiletries
  • books
  • Contact list for after the baby is born

Mom's Postpartum Bag

  • cosmetics and toiletries
  • robe
  • nightgown
  • nursing bras
  • underwear
  • going home clothes
  • breastfeeding video or books
  • cell phone and charger
Baby's Bag

  • clothes for baby
  • Baby Blanket
  • baby sling
  • Diapers

Car seat

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Could it be Spring? part 2

Next Friday is supposed to be a lovely day- so we're going to the ZOO!

You're welcome to join us- We're meeting in front of the penguins at 10 AM.

We'd love to have you there!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I'm disapointed

Our first Parent Workshop has been canceled due to lack of enrollment.

We're going to shoot for a new date in April.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Could it be Spring?

Weather above freezing, TWO DAYS IN A ROW! WOO HOOO!

I am SO sick of being cold all the time! The weather is lovely, the dog is filthy, the ground is mushy, and it might , just might, be SPRING!

Well Rounded Maternity Center is hosting a Baby Signs Parent Workshop next Saturday, March 14th.
Unfortunately, the Sign Say and Play class is being canceled due to lack of interest. We will attempt to hold another SS&P class in April.

Friday, February 20, 2009

In my copious spare time....

How do people keep up with all the blogging/myspace/facebook etc? I find I need all of these tools to promote my business, but as my business gets bussier, I have very little time to keep up with the details of keeping these things up to date!

What are YOUR tips for keeping up with the computer?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Postpartum work , Twins, and BABY SIGNS!

I've been insanely busy over the last month or so, between the holidays, working full time postpartum with a couple who had twins just before Christmas, meeting potential clients for spring, trying to make time for my family- and my dog isn't speaking to me, he sees me so little.

On top of all of that, I'm working on becoming certified as a Baby Signs Instructor. Classes will begin in March- at Well Rounded Maternity Center in Menomonee Falls.

Babysigns affiliate

BabySigns.com - Sign Language for Babies

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