Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Biggest Challege in Homeschooling

In the 6 years I've been homeschooling/ unschooling my children the biggest challenge for me are interruptions!!! And I can't seem to find a solution to this. Example we are in the middle of  a word factory game and the phone rings or a text comes in. My 2nd girl is doing fractions and I am checking her finished page and my son decides to go down get a banana and the whole bunch falls off the floor and the dog decides to eat what fell on the floor now my son is screaming at the dog and crying for help!!! Unlike issues that come up and can be solved, this one keeps coming up. In varying degrees, intensity and length. The phone can be hanged, my mobile phone silent but the stray cat who decides to sleep by my window and becomes the morning's greatest event and nothing can be more meaningful than spying on the stray cat...
Chess, like word factory, given that they can be so short, can still be interrupted....
Its easy to let go of the plan when something more interesting comes up (like the stray cat) or when chaos needs mending, but why they have to come up when they do? What can I do?
Could it be just life unfolding as I (intend to) pursue a specific task...

Monday, August 22, 2011

If Birth Were Like Painting

Then childbirth preparation class, doctor/ midwife check ups books/ articles/ blogs we read and videos we watch is like planning the painting- a few sketches perhaps?  Time to think of what you want, learn some techniques (breathing/ different positions/breastfeeding in the first 72 hours/ helpful terms etc), get to know what can work for you etc. But the paper and your brushes plus the lighting will all be provided for in your birth place and that is where you will finish the painting. You are planning a master piece, wouldn't it be fair that you get to see where this shall happen?

We can and should help ourselves but we can't do it all and this is where the humanity and training of those attending the births come in.  If they share your goals, given that you have defined your goals, then a master piece is on its way. Of course, we can't rush art...

Friday, August 12, 2011

One Hour Time Out

Feeling the need to be away from my computer and hoping it would not rain,
 I took the kids to Jack's Ridge yesterday afternoon. 
The airplane was a big treat for my little boy.
  We walked around and  hanged out for about an hour. 

I wanted to make the most of my P20.00 per person entrance fee.

 My eldest was talking about her day in school, while my son kept 
asking about the pilot in the airplane.

The surroundings inspired my 2 younger girls to talk about Spiderwick Chronicles and Narnia. 
Then, we saw this tree and suddenly it became a Portal/ Entrance to another world.

The view did calm me down...

 I wonder what these two were pointing at?
I guess we'll each remember this afternoon differently.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

My Breastfeeding Textmates

It's great that we have a week in the whole year to celebrate breastfeeding all over the world and we have the whole year to work for it, stay at it and spread the joy and benefits of building a breastfeeding culture where ever we may be, week after week until the next breastfeeding week.

I am so thrilled with World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action Breastfeeding Week theme. I would like to share this:

Inspired after viewing Lamaze International webinar "Hospital Practices That Support Breastfeeding", Erin Murray, MSPH, RD, public health and nutrition consultant. I started giving my mobile number, as a text hot line for mothers and fathers who attend the Brokenshire Woman's Center Saturday Couples Class. Around here we prefer text messaging, rather than calling. Last year I decided to tally the questions too.

I made it clear that I am not a lactation consultant but just a mother 4 who have breastfed and read (still reading) as much as I can, therefore I can not prescribe medications, charge a fee etc... And if I do not know the answer to their question I will tell them I do not know and try my best to look it up or refer them to somebody else.

My 3 main apprehension were:
  1. What if I can not answer a question satisfactorily. And could not find data or can't find or can't refer the question to a qualified person.
  2. What if there is a serious problem that can not be solved. 
  3. And what if there will be some miscommunication and the mom or dad will get upset with me?
I decided to not get carried away with my imaginings and push through with giving my phone number since a lot of the breastfeeding questions I get from my Childbirth Preparation Class Students and friends are most basic and very rarely needed a medical intervention.I also ask the group during the talk how many have access to Internet and some hands go up, I share the sites I so love and appreciate:
My favourite Philippine based breastfeeding blog, Chronicles of a Nursing Mom by a mom from my home town. And if you have facebook you ought to like the page and leave a line or two.
For breastfeeding gadgets, BabyMama, so far the most reasonably priced and excellent quality products I have found. You can even join in the conversation here.
Also most helpful sites are La leche League and Kellymom along with Articles by Dr Jack Newman. And they may leave questions/ comments/ concerns with local mom to mom breastfeeding support group facebook page.

I have 124 text mates from June 2010 to May 2011. Only new mobile numbers were recorded and if they did not give their name I only record the number which kinda made the record keeping a little tricky. I'll post more on this after I share it at the Brokenshire Health Ministries Breastfeeding Culmination Activity on August 26 at 1:30 in the afternoon at the Emma Noreen Hall. I need some help, Can I save a graph from Excel and convert it to jpeg? How can I post graphs here in my blog?



I’m celebrating World Breastfeeding Week with Natural Parents Network!

You can, too — link up your breastfeeding posts from August 1-7 in the linky below, and enjoy reading, commenting on, and sharing the posts collected here and on Natural Parents Network.

(Visit NPN for the code to place on your blog.)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

14 Years Since My First Ultrasound

The title to this post makes me feel old. And yes I am being sentimental. I had my first ultrasound  between 12 to 16 weeks pregnant with my first baby back in1997. Together with my then boyfriend, now husband, we held hands as we watched the TV/computer monitor with black and green images.

At the end of the scan, thanks to the doctor's pronouncements, I was more or less able to make out the head, the spine and the beating heart. That was it. It was confirmed that we were having a baby. The doctor said it was too early to tell the gender. And we did not want to find out either.

I look back at the experience and say it was excitingly solemn and somewhat serious. The whole ultrasound felt like was a peek inside an enclose private space. My next ultrasound was done, August 1, a day before my expected date of delivery. That's when we learned we were having a girl. During the scan, I could not make out her features on my own. If the doctor didn't pointed out her leg and toes, I would have missed. We were told all was well and as should be. I went into labor 4 days after my 2nd ultrasound.

My first and my 4th pregnancy are 10 years apart. In that 10 years we have moved on from the 2D pure diagnostic totally unentertaining,"doc explain what you are seeing" ultrasound experience to the 3D/4D scan...Just wondering, how it was like for other moms? When did you have your first Ultrasound? How many did you have?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Davao Airport's Breastfeeding Station

A few months ago, my breastfeeding mommy friend who had to travel alone with her infant, told me that we do not have a breastfeeding station at the airport. So when I saw a sign at the airport last July 15, I was so excited I just had to check it out. And I was surely going to text my friend the good news...

I hurriedly turned to my left while digging for my camera. Against my daughter's protest, I opened the door and....
See couch in the mirror.
I was stunned!!! Did the Department of Health approve this? Should I feel grateful for this?
If there's any thumbs up with this set up is that at least I can sit my baby in the couch while I pee and pray with all my might that he/she wouldn't roll off! Notice how the couch is almost blocking the changing table. But the good side to that is I have an accessible place to put my bag while changing my baby, if it opens well.

I tried my best to look at the brighter side and point out the good in the set up but I can't help but feel that what we have in the airport is for "the sake of having a breastfeeding station". Is this what our "child-friendly" city has to offer! A couch in the BANYO with instructions on how to express milk and some breastfeeding posters.
Poster with instruction on how to manually express milk.
I hope that "breastfeeding station" sign will be taken out! I find this wrong and at its very least bad taste. So after my initial excitement and ready to text and share the good news vibe, I walked away feeling fooled  and recalling my chewing gum days in high school. Since chewing gum was banned, some of my classmates and I chewed gum in the girls bathroom after lunch...
Breastfeeding does not have to happen in closed doors. If I were still breastfeeding, would I use this space to breastfeed my child or if I feel the need to express my milk, would I go inside the "breastfeeding station"? NO!!! I would prefer one of the restaurants or inside the waiting lounge in the back of the wall facing the glass that looks out to the runway would be a better option. The designated "breastfeeding station" in the Davao Airport is the best place to change diapers but not to feed my child.  What about you? Have you seen this? Would you feed your child or express your milk here?
To all new mothers out there you don't need this kind of space to breastfeed your child! You can breastfeed anywhere! Its legal!!! And most of the time people are kind enough to give you space and privacy.
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