Saturday, October 18, 2008

My Shortcut Of A Post

Confession : Facebook status updates have a tendency to postpone my nagging desire to write a blog entry. Sorry. But if you're on fb too, you already know that's where I'm spending so much of my rare online time.

My other online time is spent working with:
TourGuide Mike to plan the upcoming Disney World trip. I can't believe how quickly it's sneaking up on us! (Pray-ers .. please lift another prayer for us to sell our house. Sure would be awesome to have it sold before the trip!) This might seem like a waste of time to SOME people but to me and my family (there are 15 of us going on the trip) this is a HUGE deal.

Emails that build-up in MASSIVE heaps since I'm not checking it every 5 minutes.

A renewed (and if I can be honest, surprising with the economy and all) interest by others, in Mannatech. YES! Thrills me!

Struggling through my role of "Community Organizer" with ABC. I love it but I have little faith in my abilities to do it as well as it deserves...but I'm gonna do my best!

Oh, and I think trying to be on the computer with a little one is at one of the hardest phases. When Captain was a little smaller, he'd be content to just cuddle while I sat at the desk. Now, he's only interested in pushing buttons himself or in yelling at me to show him a youtube video of "Choo choo!!" (model trains)

Eventually, though, I WILL be back. In the meantime, find me on fb. That's where I status, flair, and share pics.

Friday, September 26, 2008

"I' Think I've Made A Huge Mistake" - Arrested Development

We laugh at this TV quote and say it from time to time whenever we've made an 'oops.'

Well, today I think I made a $50 mistake and in this crappy economy, that's pretty huge (for us anyway!)

What kind of mistake, you ask? Well, let me tell you!

Being the awesome homeschool Mom that I am (ha), and knowing my kids don't want any extra 'schoolwork' than we already have, I had to get creative with the way I approached the addition of a more rigorous "physical education" than just playing volleyball or basketball in the yard. So I figured I could get them excited about our first level of structured, yet family/home exercise by offering a goal incentive.

So I had a school meeting and told them we would be starting a walk/jog activity at least 3 times per school week. Knowing how dreadful this is to the kids (because I've tried before) i told them that whoever is first able to jog our entire path (over a mile but not exactly sure of the distance) I would pay them fifty dollars cash! Being the money hungry kiddos that they are, they ran to put on their socks and tennies! Before we got out the door, I had to explain that this would take them a long while to accomplish and that speed was not the goal...just endurance. I told them this was a long-term goal and that it was designed to give us something to work for during the coming months.

Little did I know I might be out the fifty bucks on our first day! ACK!

Thankfully, there was some BARELY slowing down at the end that I was able to NOT have to pay today BUT, Indie & Rocky almost (pretty much) made it! And Ray was VERY VERY close to making it, too! I could NOT believe it! WHO ARE THESE CHILDREN? I struggle to believe they share my DNA. I have never, and I mean NEVER had any sort of endurance. Not in elementary school. Not in Jr. High school. Not in high school. And certainly not in college, when I actually took a running class to get in shape for my wedding. NEVER was I able to run the entire length of the class. Never.

Ugh. I'm proud of them but, DANG, couldn't they have given me a chance to actually budget this "bright" idea of mine?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

New Widget

I added a MommyLife.net widget to my sidebar. If you are a Palin fan, you'll be particularly happy with her blog as of late. Many Moms will like her for other reasons as well. Hope you'll check her out from time to time!

Ever Wondered About That FedEx Box??

Panda Gives Birth

This is just so cool. A Mama Panda, left alone to do what comes naturally. What a novel concept.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I Was Tagged...A Long Time Ago But...

Better late than never, right Susanne?

You'd think it'd be simple for me to just whip up a post with six things about myself but between dial-up and everything else, I had to put this tag on my to-do list.

But here we go.

Six things you may or may not know about me.

1 - I never, ever have or will drink carbonated beverages.

2 - I am a night owl and sleep as late as I possibly can every morning.

3 - I used to really, REALLY want to be a model and if I was a teenager again, I'd be ALL OVER finding a chance to try out for "Next Top Model."

4 - Speaking of reality shows, I still want to do a game show or Survivor or Amazing Race or something like that some day.

5 - I have a totally new and exciting understanding of Heaven thanks to Randy Alcorn's book by the same name.

6 - I really want to be a bigger Jesus Freak (thanks toby & dctalk for such a great term.)

I tag Shannon & Donna!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Oh Survey Can You See?

**The link has been corrected so please try again! www.TheBirthSurvey.com **
An awesome new website (with connections to Lamaze International) is collecting birth experience data from all over the country because, as the website says:

A growing body of research shows that among the most important factors influencing a woman's likelihood of obstetric interventions, especially cesarean section, induction of labor and episiotomy, are where and with whom she gives birth. In short, a woman who goes to a provider or hospital with high rates of interventions is more likely to end up experiencing those interventions, and to suffer the potential consequences. Research also tells us that facilities and providers with high intervention rates do not necessarily fare any better with respect to health outcomes, and often, in fact, fare worse. Research has shown that transparency and public reporting of health outcomes encourage quality improvements in our maternity care system.


Even though Alabama's results aren't available yet (only NY state's are at this point) this survey is working to compile it for us and will play a role in educating expectant parents of the near future.

If you have had a baby in the past 3 years, PLEASE go take The Birth Survey!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

A Different Anniversary

I started writing about this a couple of nights ago. It was extremely long-winded and incomplete. Henry was exhausted just listening to me read my intro to him for his approval.

Now, I've ditched the previous post and I'm going to attempt a bullet-pointed piece that will hit the highlights and you'll just have to ask me to expound if you want to know more.

*September 10th was the one year anniversary of our house being for sale.

*We put the house up for sale so we could move into a house with a smaller house payment, a smaller drive to all things, and a smaller bunch of expenditures (like neighborhood associations.)

*We have wrestled with God about whether or not this was the right thing to do.

*We have wrestled with God about why He hasn't sold the house when we feel He asked us to be obedient in marketing it.

*We have been blessed with the spiritual process of waiting and trusting.

*We have gained a freedom in exhausting all human means of selling this house.

*We have experienced awesome bonds in friendship with others who are praying with and for us.

*We have great confidence in God's plan and anxiously await the end result of this adventure.

Seriously, I could write volumes more about this. I could go into great detail about the spiritual and emotional ups and downs. I could list out all the amazing experiences with people (especially my awesome parents!) and situations we've had over this past year.

It's been a journey, no doubt. It's still a journey.

God is the Alpha and the Omega. Things start and end with Him. Time is in His hand.

I love His provision and I love Him for revealing Himself in new ways. I'm thankful for His mercy as He is teaching us incredibly valuable truths and is strengthening our marriage, our resolve, and is encouraging us to persevere. I thank Him for answering my prayer for faith-strengthening in such a loving and gentle way.

I love you, LORD and I worship You!

Monday, September 08, 2008

D.C. Midwife Gets Some Awesome Media Attention

Cheers to Ruth Lubic and THANKS to CBS for a great story! May God richly bless this sweet lady and the work she is doing for Mommas and Babies!
(Hey Don Williamson! I hope you see this story!! Our infant mortality rate (10 per 1000) isn't quite as bad as D.C.'s 12 but it's certainly worse than the national average of 6.8!...and you think midwives would make it worse. Hmph.)

Click here to see video from CBSNews.

(CBS) Every time Ruth Lubic fusses over a healthy baby, the joy in her voice comes from eight long years of beating the odds. In Washington, D.C., where the infant mortality rate is almost double the national average, CBS News correspondent Wyatt Andrews reports.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of infant deaths per 1,000 births in the United States is 6.8 - but in Washington, it's 12.2.

Lubic and her team of midwives run a birthing clinic in one of the city's poorest areas. After 800 babies in eight years, they have never lost a child in childbirth, and has cut the rate of premature births - the biggest risk factor for infant mortality - in half.

"You are saving a lot of lives here," Andrews said.

Lubic replied: "Saving lives and increasing the quality of life."

Ruth built her clinic in Washington, D.C., on purpose. She figured if her ideas worked there, if she could tackle infant mortality in Washington, she'd set an example everywhere.

Her approach is simple. She believes low-income women, many on Medicaid, need the prenatal education that midwives provide. Everything from posture, to nutrition, to how the baby grows.

Anike Oliver, who just had a baby boy, Ukama, said she got more time with the midwives than she had with a doctor.

"They wanted to make sure I had as much information as they did," Oliver said.

"Do you think it boils down to just the time you spend with them," Andrews asked Lubic.

"I think so," she replied. "I'm convinced that's what it is. It's time, respect, its treating people with dignity."

And what's most remarkable is that Lubic still does it at 81 years old. She's runs the clinic during the week, then runs homeon the weekends to her husband in New York.

"You could be retired!" Andrews said.

"I'm not tired the first time! Much less retired," Lubic said.

Lubic's biggest fan is D.C. city councilman David Catania. He says because she keeps hundreds of babies out of prenatal care, she saves the city around a $1 million a year. That's why he supports her when Ruth hounds the city council for funding.

"While I tease her a lot about being a pit bull with a smile, I look at her sometimes with complete envy about how you can have such a burning drive at 81," Catania said. "And it's a great inspiration."

"I think I'm insufferable because of my … belief that what I'm doing is the right thing to do," Lubic said.

Lubic says infant mortality is a national disgrace - but a disgrace that midwives can help solve.

And this pit bull with a smile won't let go of that idea until it sinks in nationwide.


© MMVIII, CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Fireproof...

Something that is fireproof isn't something that prevents fire. It's just something that withstands fire. I pray for God to continue fireproofing my marriage.

Yeah, this flick has a slight fragrance of cheese, especially to the skeptics, but I believe this movie is going to have a huge impact on many families. I believe God will use this film to heal brokenness of marriages today and will provide the tools and encouragement for young people entering into marriage in the future. And just imagine the generational impact of those children who watch the healing within their home! It's exciting to think about!

Today, I prayed for another friend whose divorce is nearly final. I received this video from another friend I've been praying for as she and her husband divorced. And those two are just a small sampling of the huge number of loved ones who have followed this path over the past couple of years. It has been absolutely epidemic! Something is terribly wrong with the way Americans are viewing and entering marriage today. The heat and fire will definitely come to the home of a married couple but it should not cause a breakdown of the two elements. It should meld them together.

More From "The Big Push"

Critical Women's Health Issues Neglected as Physician Group Yet Again Sets its Sites on Midwives

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 1, 2008)—In the newest phase of its ongoing effort to deny women the right to choose their maternity care providers and birth settings, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has announced that eliminating access to midwives who specialize in out-of-hospital birth is now the second most important issue on its state legislative agenda. This move puts restricting access to trained midwives ahead of such critical issues as contraceptive equity, ensuring access to emergency contraception, and the prevention and treatment of perinatal HIV/AIDS.

"ACOG claims to be an advocate of women's health and choice, but when it comes to the right to choose to deliver your baby in the privacy of your own home with a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) who is specifically trained to provide the safest care possible, ACOG's paternalistic colors bleed through," said Susan M. Jenkins, Legal Counsel for the Big Push for Midwives Campaign. "It is astonishing that an organization that purports to be a champion of women's healthcare would put a petty turf battle that affects less than one percent of the nation's childbearing women ahead of pressing issues that have an impact on nearly every woman in this country. If this is not dereliction of duty, I can't imagine what is."

In recent years, ACOG has led a well-financed campaign to fight legislative reforms that would license and regulate CPMs and has now teamed up with the American Medical Association (AMA) to promote legislation that would prevent families from choosing to give birth at home. Despite these joint efforts, the groups have not been successful in defeating the groundswell of grassroots activism in support of full access to a comprehensive range of maternity care options that meet the needs of all families.

"Wisconsin is a good example of what ACOG and the AMA are up against," said Jane Crawford Peterson, CPM, Advocacy Trainer for The Big Push. "Our bipartisan grassroots coalition of everyday people from across the state managed to defeat the most powerful and well-financed special interest groups in Wisconsin, all on an expenses-only budget of $3000 during a legislative session in which $47 million was spent on lobbying. When you try to deny women the fundamental and very personal right to choose where and how to give birth, they will get organized and they will let their elected officials know that restrictions on those rights cannot stand."

Noting these successes, ACOG has recently launched its own grassroots organizing effort, calling on member physicians to recruit their patients to participate in its "Who Will Deliver My Baby?" medical liability reform campaign.

"ACOG itself admits that we're facing a critical shortage of maternity care providers," said Steff Hedenkamp, Communications Coordinator for the Big Push. "They certainly realize that medical liability reform is nothing more than a band aid and that increasing access to midwives and birth settings is critical to fixing our maternity care system and ensuring that rural, low-income and uninsured women don't fall through the cracks. Midwives represent an essential growth segment of the U.S. pool of maternity care providers, but instead of putting the healthcare needs of women first, ACOG would rather devote its considerable lobbying budget to a last-ditch attempt to protect its own bottom line. This is not a happy Labor Day for our nation's mothers and babies."

The Big Push for Midwives (http://www.TheBigPushforMidwives.org) is a nationally coordinated campaign organized to advocate for regulation and licensure of Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs) in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and to push back against the attempts of the American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists to deny American families access to safe and legal midwifery care. The campaign plays a critical role in building a new model of U.S. maternity care delivery at the local and regional levels, at the heart of which is the Midwives Model of Care, based on the fact that pregnancy and birth are normal life processes. Media inquiries: Steff Hedenkamp (816) 506-4630, steff@thebigpushformidwives.org.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Dropping In For Just A Minute

I do not do well without the Internet guys. It misses me and I miss it. And it's cool to see that some of y'all miss me ON the Internet. Very sweet. Thank you!

We are doing well. Still waiting for the house to sell/show again. Still having a super-busy summer. Still enjoying ball season's end (did anyone else see Indie's team pic in the paper last week? HILARIOUS, huh?) Still counting down to Disney World in the distant future and the beach and Six Flags in the coming weeks. Still enjoying the freedom of self-scheduled summers in between homeschool years. Still reading the awesomeness that is the (slow but fascinating) book Heaven.

I wish I had something exciting to write about but all deep topics are too tough to wrestle right now. I just wanted you to know we were still kicking!

Friday, July 11, 2008

You'll Just Have To Forgive Me

I will have very (VERY) limited internet access for a little while. I don't know for sure how long this temporary situation will last but until it is resolved, I will only have access when I load up the laptop and drive around looking for a free wifi signal or go to one of the folks' houses. It's a big pain but for our situation, it's what's we're dealing with for right now.

Just wanted you to know :)

Oh, and everything is fine. No worries, (actually, that's a lie but for bloggin' sake, let's stick with it) and hopefully things will change soon so that I can get back in my groove.

I almost forget what my groove feels like but I'm sure it's still there somewhere.

Take THAT, Copycat.

Glycoproducts must deliver all products to Mannatech for destruction. Ha.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Top Ten Reasons To Blog Tonight

10. Two of my four loyal readers are wondering where I am.

9. I'm well-rested, unlike the past 73 days in a row, and can put a couple of thoughts together. (Thank you, God for afternoon naps!)

8. I need to give a shout-out to Indie & her All-Star team for being sub-district champs!



7. To add a link to the house for sale blog in case it helps put it up higher in the google results for searches about the Redland Road Elementary School in Wetumpka.

6. Because I need to spend a few online minutes away from Facebook.

5. If I don't blog now, it might be another couple of weeks added on to my already too-long delay here because the calendar is hairy-crazy for the rest of the month.

4. Writing, as non-intellectual as mine usually is, helps me.

3. Sitting down at the desk to type this puts an ever-growing to-do list in my eyesight so that I can check off a few more things before going to bed.

2. Opens an opportunity for me to invite all the lurkers to drop me a comment to finally say 'hello!' (I know you're there!)

1. Everyone deserves the chance to see this cutie-patootie pic my Mom took this weekend.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Of Course I Yell!

Lately, I've been asked by a couple of different people, "Do you yell at your kids?"

Yes, I assure you...I yell at my kids. I am not proud of it but they make me mean! Aargh!

Ray is at camp. I miss her.
Indie is on an awesome All-Star team. I hope they win sub-districts!
Rocky is almost finished with school. Yes, I admit it. He's not done yet. But he WILL finish.
He-Man scratched up his knee seconds before I was going to tell him, "You're going to fall if you keep doing that!" Sigh.
Captain is non-stop running now. He absolutely wears me out at the ballfields. We go between allowing him the freedom to roam and strapping him in the stroller. I accidentally left the stroller at home today. It was exhausting.

Here are some current pics. Enjoy :)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I Have Been VERY Hesitant To...


Share this blog. Why? Because of the knowledge that I have some out-spoken non-Christian readers (and Dennis isn't the only one I know of, he's just the main one I know wouldn't object to the linkage) that I really hope will come to know Christ as Savior. You see, it's kinda one of those dirty-little-secrets-thing that you don't mind talkng about among like-minded people but something that can totally be taken too seriously and used as ammo against us by those who think in opposition.

The blog mostly pokes fun at Baptists and Baptist-ish churches. This will make some of you readers laugh because the truth hits too close to home. I hope others will see it as evidence that Christians are not perfect and that there are a great many who don't even claim to be! We all have our failings but through Christ and His Bride, the church, we keep running the race before us.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Gonna Look Great


Like this one day!

And I'm using this site to help me.
(Thanks to Barbara for introducing it to me it!)

I will get some pics mailed to them as soon as I can because with the way things are going lately, I'll miss the whole transitioning stage if I wait too long! YOWSERS!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Official Album Is Packed

So this is just a small handful of non-digital candids from the big day!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

And This, Ladies & Gentlemen


Is why I haven't posted much.

But I need to say, that in May:

Ray turned 12, Indie turned 10, our house didn't sell, the girls had a piano recital, all the kids played mucho amounts of ball, and I got more gray hair.

Heaven

I'm not a reader. There, I said it.

But this book is AMAZING!

There is NO WAY I can discuss it in 50 words or less. You'll just have to read it for yourselves.

Or, since I already broke the "blog every day" rule, I might as well break the "50 words or less" rule, too.

Maybe soon.

Does anyone count my words anyway?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

New MLS Number And Renewed Hope!


I'm all shiny and happy again. Things are LOOKING UP!
We gots us a new agent, a new MLS# and some renewed spirits!

Softball Sportsmanship

GJo, get out your hankie!

Auburn's Sir Charles

For your enjoyment:

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Thursday, May 22, 2008

It's Just Impossible


Whether I write 50 words or 5000, none would be suitable for a blog entry about this tragedy.

Praise God this family has a deep faith and confidence.

Lord, please give them peace and endurance and bless them for glorifying You.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

In A Very Difficult Situation


I hurt someone's feelings. I knew it was a possibility even though it was unintentional.

I have had a yucky feeling since the drama started. The email I sent tonight makes me feel at peace, though. I didn't mean harm and think I explained myself gently in response.

God says...

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Still Barely Less Than 50

My brain can't come up with something witty or relevant before taking the laptop to the shop for a power cord jack repair.

But I didn't want to stop this daily-post roll I was on.

So here's a video for your viewing pleasure.

Monday, May 19, 2008

When It Looks Too Good To Be True


I shouldn't profess my love so soon.

Toured "the house" today and it's been removed from consideration. My body reacted as if there is mold. Add that to the "as is"-ness condition and it had to be bumped.

Phooey.

House #2 has definitely regained #1 status!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Hebrews 10:36 NLT

Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.


Patient endurance....God's will....Patient endurance....God's will....

*******


Saturday, May 17, 2008

My PaPaul


What a privilege to see WWII vets return from the Honor Flight today.

I look forward to hearing more from PaPaul about his experiences. He was very tired tonight so we tried not to pressure him for too much information but I know he's got lots to talk about!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Prayer Walk Today


Open house tomorrow and Sunday. We are very optimistic!

There are two houses of particular interest to us on the buying side of things. I would be ecstatic with either, but have a favorite.

I wonder how many houses I've loved in this adventure...

Keeping it real.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Rainy Day Became...


rained out ballgames.

Which became yummy, warm, home-cooked supper.

Which became relaxing dusk time on back porch.

Which became early kids' bedtimes (super-early for boys!)

Which became DVR'ed Earl, Grey's, Lost.

Which became a 2nd-day-in-a-row blog entry.

And all in 48 words.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Blog 2.0?

I need to blog more but I fear starting a post that is destined to become a tiresome and rambling schedule recap.

So, I'm giving myself a project.

Blog every day, in 50 words or less.

Titles don't count and there's no rule saying I can't link to more words!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Joining The Revolution....While It's Still Young

And this time I'm not talking about the R3volUTION!

Noticed these buttons on other blogs?


Refer A Friend using Revolution Money Exchange


This is THE NEW THING to kick paypal and their fees to the curb :) And it's doing a bang-up job of getting customers by offerring FREE MONEY to new accounts! I learned about it from Christine who linked to a couple of other people who could vouch for it being legit. There were also plenty of comments at her blog and then I started noticing the beaucoup amount of blogs and forum posters who had this same little button. SO, I jumped on board, too!

So click on the button and sign up and you can get $25, too! And then I will get $10! Then you can refer people, too and get $10! I have a feeling, this is going to be quite "THE" thing. And it will be SO awesome to not have those annoying little paypal fees when you sell. And the extra moula is ALWAYS a blessing!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Guess I'll Switch Him Back

Yesterday, I turned Captain's carseat around to a forward-facing position for the first time. He seemed slightly amused at the new view but it was no biggie to him. The rest of us thought it was awesome to see him "sitting like a big boy!"

But then I read this blog post today and thought, "ya know, I should probably switch him back."

So that's what I'm gonna do today before we go to the ballfields.

Monday, April 28, 2008

If I Hear "It Doesn't Have A Garage" One More Stinkin' Time...


Argh!

This weekend's house-lookers have "decided they must have a garage."

THEN LOOK AT THE HOUSE DESCRIPTION AND SEE THAT WE ONLY HAVE A DOUBLE PARKING-PAD!! Do not come to our house if you "must have a garage" because we do not have a garage! HELLO!

It's just so discouraging. SO discouraging.

And we found 2 houses today that we REALLY like.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

10-4 Good Buddy Is Here!


I'd like to announce the early arrival of my newest nephew, whose blog alias will be 10-4 or Good Buddy....not sure which CB radio reference I'll stick with. I really hoped he would weigh 10lbs 4 oz but he missed that mark by a hair, coming in at 4lbs 8oz.

He wasn't due to arrive for about 6 more weeks so he'll need to wear this special space man suit for a little while but things are looking good for him. His birthday is April 22nd.

This is Lou (Henry's sis) and Grainger's baby boy & they are going to be great parents! Please be in prayer for their health, well-being, and family bonding.


Sunday, April 13, 2008

While We're Talking Reality Shows

First, I just have to jump in with the rest of the Christians and say a BIG WHOO HOO for the Shout To The Lord performances! PRAISE HIS NAME!

Second, how about my fave, Jason Castro? LOVE HIM! Yes, he's got a little goof factor to him (when I first saw him on AI I thought he was high!) but there's definitely something I love about him! Isn't he beautiful?



And while we're at it, let's watch this one again:

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Vote For Rog!

***EDITED*** See below...
You know he deserves it over that Yankee! :) And he deserves it over the 2 people who have already been eliminated from the show and come back AND he deserves it over the girl who should have been voted off the first week!

I'm SO happy for all the Biggest Loser contestants, though! What a blessing!

You can vote 100 times per email address! So get cracking!

Roger Schultz from Alabama
From the Biggest Loser website (look at his weight loss chart! He set a BL record for most weight lost on campus!): Roger is a fun-loving Southern guy who is very loud and very outgoing. When he walks into the room you can see his personality a mile away. He's very proud of being an ex-football player for Alabama. Seeing his pictures you could tell why, the guy was hot!! He's very passionate about getting back to his playing weight. Not only for his health but because he wants to match his twin brother who is 198lbs. Nowadays, he satisfies his college football cravings by hosting a live radio show: In The Trenches. It's lists him as one of Alabama's favorite "football son". With his down-to-earth good ol' boy charm, I can see why.

***ETA***

Dear friends,

As most of you know, Roger has lost over 144 pounds in the last few months on the NBC show "Biggest Loser:Couples". After going through this dramatic transformation over the last 5 months, Roger is still the most caring husband, loving father, and loyal friend that anyone could pray for in their lives.

I am asking you to vote for my best friend and better half Roger to be the third finalist on the show. Please go to the following link http://www.nbc.com/The_Biggest_Loser_5/vote/register.shtml. If the link does not work, go to NBC.com and select Biggest Loser:Couples. The voting link will be at the top of the Biggest Loser page. Each email address can vote 100 times until 9pm Thursday night.

I have attached a picture that brings me great joy. You can see how happy Ivan is to have his Daddy home!

Please forward this to your friends and family and ask them to vote for Roger!

Thanks for your help!

Love to you all,
Paige

Monday, April 07, 2008

The House Hunt

The favorite-d list of houses we are considering has been very fluid. Since this one is no longer an option, I thought I'd show it to you.
Jen & Steph will appreciate my love of it more than most others, I believe.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

A New Label About Links

You should definitely click on these. I should have created this label long ago. I need to backup and this label to some previous entries.

Amy's Humble Musings sound very similar to some of my recent heart mumblings, again.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Your Parenting Tip For The Day

THE DAILY GROOVE ~ by Scott Noelle
www.enjoyparenting.com/dailygroove NOTE: See the important message at the end of today's Groove...

Say "Yes" to *Anything* Your Child Wants!

Today, if you find yourself at odds with your child, try letting go of resistance and saying YES!

For example, if your toddler wants to play with a real chainsaw, you might say, "That sure looks like fun, doesn't it!? Here, let me fire that up for you!"

And don't burden your child with fear-based warnings; trust that s/he is capable of learning from experience. Remember that All Is Well in the big picture, even if someone loses a few body parts.

Most of all, decide to lighten up -- i.e., be enlightened -- and enjoy today in particular, which, in case you forgot, is . . .

.
.
.

April Fools Day! :P


AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM MY LAWYER:

Um... You got that the chainsaw
thing was a joke, right?

http://dailygroove.net/say-yes-to-anything

Feel free to forward this message to your friends!
(Please include this paragraph and everything above.) Copyright (c) 2008 by Scott Noelle

"Inspiration & Coaching for Progressive Parents"
http://www.ScottNoelle.com
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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Magical Party

It was 5 years ago today that my sweet little He-Man made his first appearance. His birth story is a favorite of mine for many reasons but since Ray has given me a little trouble about being so nostalgic, especially with my montage of slow music and fades, I decided not to go the usual birth-day route. Instead, I put together a little clip from his birthday party.

Normally, I post very little from birthday parties for fear of hurting feelings of anyone who isn't invited. This year, however, my skin is a little thicker and I've come to realize that most other people I know have pretty thick skin, too! Therefore, I'm posting more pics than I've done in the past.

So we decided on a Disney World theme this year. He-Man was allowed to invite friends based on our usual rule of thumb....5 years old = 5 friends on the invitation list. And as I mentioned in another post with more time and money, I could really go all-out with my ideas BUT with limited amounts of both, we end up paring things down just a bit. HOWEVER, I think we pulled off a pretty decent time for all the kiddos!

5:30 - 6:00 - big kids help little kids make magic wands and mouse ear hats for the parade.

6:00 - Disney parade and dancing to Hakuna Matata (you HAVE to watch all the way to the end of the montage so you can see this. It is worth it, I promise!)

6:15 - pizza and "hidden Mickey" cheese!!!

6:30 - gifts!!!

6:45 - decorate own cupcakes (a la Garden Grill -- our fave EPCOT Center restaurant!) and fudgecicles! I couldn't find any Mickeys on a stick so these were 2nd best....

7:15 - "fireworks" (party confetti poppers) and party favors (Diz-themed kites)

All in all, a great evening!

Happy Birthday He-Man! You are one of the most genuinely sweet and loving people I've ever known and with those gorgeous eyes, perfect smile and incredible brains, I'm quite certain God has huge plans for you!

I LOVE YOU, SWEETIE!!!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter Montage

You know you love a good montage by Stacy :)

Jackson - Update & PRAISES

Thanks for praying, y'all! Keep it up!
From Mom Tracie:
I know that good news travels fast and so many of you may have already heard the latest reports about Jackson. We all arrived back in the states on Friday night, and Jackson was admitted to UAB Children's Hospital under the care of a neurologist and his team. After a late night of blood tests and muscle checks, we found out Saturday morning that Jackson's CK Test (the muscle enzyme test that was in the 6,000s the day before we left Vienna) was down to 650, just slightly higher than the normal level of 150.
Saturday morning the doctors evaluated Jackson, and they are convinced that it is not a degenerative muscle disease or a chronic auto-immune disease. They suspect that this is Benign Parainfectious Myocitis, which means that there was some type of infection, probably a virus, that caused Jackson's muscles to become inflamed, and that it is a temporary response which will eventually get better. The doctor said that often this particular illness targets the lower extremities, and in Jackson's case his quads, hamstrings, and psoas (which is a muscle that runs from his low back into his legs). These muscles are all very painful and also tight, so Jackson has pain walking and walks slightly bent over and on his toes.
The doctors don't want to repeat any of the countless viral and blood tests that were run on Jackson in Vienna, but they want to do an MRI to look at his muscles and to see the nature of the inflammation. Apparently, if it is Benign Infectious Myocitis, then the inflammation will look a certain way on the MRI. So rather than waiting in the hospital over the weekend until a pediatric MRI is able to be scheduled, they went ahead and sent us to _____ for a few days until they call with an appointment to come back for the MRI and a meeting with the doctors. If they confirm that this is what is going on, then they will just keep Jackson on Motrin for pain relief and send him to physical therapy until his muscles are better and working properly again. We aren't sure how long this process will take, but please pray that we will all be able to return to Romania together, as Robert will have to return on March xxth.
Already, we are seeing amazing improvements in Jackson's ability to walk and his pain level. We had a wonderful time yesterday returning to our home to see family and friends, and it was such a great distraction for Jackson as he was spoiled with every Easter candy and toy that a little boy could ever want. He even went on an Easter Egg hunt through the yard with the help of our friends. He is like looking at a different child altogether.
We will let you know how the MRI next week goes, but it looks like things are going to be ok, and I wish you could all know how we feel. On the way home from the hospital, Robert and I couldn't help but just pray and sing and thank God for the way that He has cared for us these last few weeks. From the amazing support network of our family, friends, and colleagues, to the kindest people that we met along the way in our travels, to the healing that we are still witnessing right before our eyes- we are overwhelmed. We have had cars loaned to us, money donated, prayer meetings held, and family make sacrifices of travel and time. We have treasured your e-mails, felt your prayers, and in the middle of wondering if our little boy would ever walk again, we felt hope. I am crying just to think of all of the love that has been shown to our family. Here it is early on Easter morning, and we are so acutely aware of the love of Christ, who is both powerful enough to overcome sin and death and also to heal our sweet Jackson.
In Him, Tracie

Monday, March 17, 2008

Alabama Wildlife


Four ball practices at four different times in three different locations. A little wild but not too bad.

Ray's, Rocky's, and He-Man's practices lasted so long that they didn't get home until after 8PM. How thankful we are that we can sleep late tomorrow. Especially because today's adventures involved not only ball practice but also walking through at least a mile of Alabama woodlands on a field trip. We are all so pooped.

Speaking of pooped, we all learned a new poop word today. He-Man says he now knows 3 words for poop... Poo, dung, and the new one, scat.

AND to continue that subject...

Captain did the duty (doody??) on the pot again today. This time was the most efficient of the events so I'm feeling very good about it all!

Today's field trip yielded some pretty cool pics. Most were taken by Ray but I took a few, too so that she would be in some of them.

Please De-Lurk - You Know My Thoughts - What Are Yours?

What would it take to get you dear readers to click on this link, read the article, and then comment on it here at the blog?

You guys are notoriously lurky on these juicy topics and I want to figure out a way to get your fingers to do some talking. SURELY these articles I post here stimiulate some sort of thought and emotion, right?

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Technology & Tornadoes

Yeah, it's awesome we have the ability to see this amazing event occur live. And it's cool to have the ability to edit and post online for the world within a couple of hours of its occurence.

But the coolest thing?

Psalm 135:
6 The Lord does whatever pleases him
throughout all heaven and earth,
and on the seas and in their depths.
7 He causes the clouds to rise over the whole earth.
He sends the lightning with the rain
and releases the wind from his storehouses.
(NLT)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Brothers & Sisters In Christ, Please Take A Moment

It's Official!

We've got the vacation house booked and plans are starting to roll right along! Only 327 days to go!

For any other Disney World trip planners, you GOTTA do the TGM site. I promise I don't get a dime for promoting this...I just really love it so much! (I'm considering checking into being a website affilliate, though. I just don't think I have enough readers to warrant their signing with me.)

Anyway, here's the way to save $ at the TGM site:

AVP (Automated Vacation Planner) Preview Tour at http://tourguidemike.com/tour/index.asp
Type "HE7KD-8GA" in the Promotional Code section of the purchase page and save $3 off the normal purchase price of $21.95!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Steph, This One's For You

File this one away in your "random" spot.

I really don't even know what to say about it. Way too bizarre for me!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

This Post

A post called "Multiplication" by a gal named Jenni, was of great encourgement to me today. I thought I'd share it with you.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Cataloging Current Chaos & Contemplations

Alphabetically.

Alabama lawmakers. Ugh. I can think of another "C" word (notice the alliteration of the title?) that could describe a bunch of them. It's definition is "not straight; bent."

Ball season. It is SO upon us. Thank you, God for sending the much-needed rain that has allowed us a slower start than originally scheduled. We'll be ready for a full line-up soon but right now, having each of the 4 kids practicing only once a week instead of twice, has been really nice! Stay tuned for what I hope will be really great ball videos and pictures.

Birthday parties. If I had more time and money I could probably come up with a few incredibly cool ideas but with a tight budget and even tighter calendar, the planning required for the March 27, May 7, May 29, and June 22 events is a little cheated sometimes. Captain's 1st bday party was with very little fanfare, poor fella. I think the other 4 might get mutually themed events...all motivated by a certain mouse we'll be visiting in February 2009. We are now in countdown mode so I think the kids would enjoy some Diz-themed celebrations. But not just a Princess or Mickey thing! No, I'm thinking something specifically related to our favorite things on our previous DW trip. Hmmm...

Blogs. Adding lots to my reader lately. Watch the sidebar because most will probably make it there in the near future.

Houses. I have a folder of online bookmarks for 12 houses. These are the ones we are interested in seriously considering once ours sells. Unfortunately, one of these 12 became a "pending" status this week. I guess that's OK, though because it's a different one that actually has my heart-rate speeding a little when I think about it.

Kids. Mine are awesome and amazing. Sometimes, in between the rebellion and disobedience, the fussing and fighting, the name-calling and hitting, my kids will laugh and play with each other and obey simple commands. Sometimes they will do what they need to do without being told. Sometimes they are fall-out-of-my-chair funny! Sometimes I look at them when they don't know it, and I just stare and smile because I can't believe how gorgeous and wonderful they are.

Living with parents. It's still good but it's still not home.

"Preparing For Adolescence." - This is a class I am teaching to 6th grade girls at the church. It's one of those classes where parents have to sign a permission slip. It's one of those classes where I had to meet with parents before we started. It's one of those classes where students are allowed to write anonymous questions and put them in a box. Yeah.

Reality TV - We're too interested in too many of these silly shows. But they are SO much fun. Project Runway was great and I will miss watching it. The Biggest Loser is new to our schedule this year and was only added because of Bama's Roger Shultz. We are now REALLY loving it and hope Rog goes all the way! It makes me want to exercise, which is a good thing but I often find myself eating uce cream while I watch it! Survivor is still an old standby. We haven't let the kids watch it this year, though. I don't have a favorite yet. American Idol is great, of course. I had high hopes for David Arculetta (sp?) but tonight's bombing worries me. Jason Castro is gorgeous. I don't mean that in a lustful way but in a way that means I truly think he's beautiful. I like looking at him like I like looking at sunsets. The Apprentice is another new one we added to our viewing list. It almost didn't make it because we were unsure we'd like it but it's been very enjoyable. I don't know if we'll watch it when the Celebrity season is over. I don't know if we'd enjoy watching regular people. (as an aside - is anyone watching Breaking Bad?? It's not a reality show but... anyone see it? It's horribly, and I mean HORRIBLY as in a bad-way, fascinating.)

Ron Paul. I am sad he won't be our Prez and will miss his campaign (this girl ROCKS!!!).

Teething. 12 teeth in Captain's little mouth now. T W E L V E ! He's not even 13 months old (will be on the 13th, though! YIKES!) These four molars have been tough but we're nearing the end. Two nights ago was restless. Last night was better but not perfectly sound. Tonight is lots of drool but a happy mood.

TGM - As mentioned in the Birthday Parties entry, we're in the early but serious stages of officially planning our next Family Disney World vacation (with Henry's family.) Even though I stuck my nose in the accomodations-planning portion for a short period of time, I have since given all authority of that responsibility to Pa Trippe. I know he will do a fantastic job in that department and I'd much rather focus on the itinerary portion of the trip. Too soon? NO WAY! Farnsworth and I do a bang-up job of this and with the wisdom of Tour Guide Mike, we are certainly expecting another smooth, relaxed, fully-packed, but well-rested vacation.

Time For A New One?

If you're needing a new nursing bra, here's a great opportunity to get a great one for yourself while donating some money to a great cause!

I love Bravado! bras and love Dr. Jack Newman so this charitable effort is very worth my involvement.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Wish I Had More Time

There are lots of issues I'd love to sift through in my head and heart by writing more deeply here on my blog. Unfortunately, this season in life isn't that conducive. Even now, I'm typing with my right hand only while sitting with a sleeping one-year-old draped over my left shoulder and my left hand comforting his back. Today has been another clingy one but hopefully the 4th of his first round of molars will be completely through within the next day or so (making a total of 12 teeth!) I feel quite sure if I tried passing him to someone else or tried putting him on the bed, he'd be awake & grumpy for sure. These teething naps just aren't very deep.

Soooo, I'm typing this little bit now and reading through my blog reader while I have a moment. It was the reading of this post over at Amy's Humble Musings that prompted me to even write now. I love writing about subjects near to my heart (like Amy's that was SO well-done!!!) but my chunks of time for coherent thought are much slimmer than my waistline. That's why I've resorted to so many links lately.

As I watch the clock march forward, I'm struggling with "just" sitting here knowing the kitchen needs cleaning, I have schoolwork to grade, a shower to take, and grocery list to make. But this baby REALLY needs this overdue nap. And the rest of us REALLY need to make sure he gets it before church.

Oh goodie! He-Man just brought me my very loud cell phone screaming out Toby Mac's Boomin' ringtone. (Missed the call, though. Sorry whoever that was!) That means I'm no longer holding a napper, I'm comforting a nursing teether. Gotta change these cool ringtones to something not so....boomin'.

I am so impressed with how much I typed this time! Y'all better comment so I know it was worth it!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Painful Laughter

Did anyone else double over in painful, gut-splitting, throat-sore-ing, tear-rolling laughter Saturday night when watching this clip?

Thank goodness we could pause it during the pain!

ETA: embedded video

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Tornatows

If you Google "tornatow", my blog is the first English-speaking one to come up! I actually get a bunch of hits from this. What a stat!

I talked to a friend from P'ville today that was witness to the twister that hit there a couple of weeks ago. She explained, in response to my question, that they do INDEED sound like trains. I asked if it sounded like, the "woo woo" of a train whistle or if it was a "chugga chugga" sound. I wasn't being smart alecky but wanted to know what sound meant "Run for cover!"

Her description said that it was like the low "whoooo whoooo" of a train bearing down on you. Gave me the willies. Please, Lord, I don't need to hear it in person.

Hope Monday doesn't bring us any reason to write more about tornatows.

SCORE!

3 things worth a little "whoo hoo" and exclamation mark over the past few days:

--43 great items of clothing for $41 during 75% off day at my fave consignment sale!
--all kids did great at first day of ball practices!
--nearly 100 people (at least 92) saw our showing of The Business of Being Born Tuesday night!



The blog has been really difficult to maintain these days. Thanks for checking in with it anyway! Maybe I'll have bigger chunks of time and attention in the near future.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Say No To Drugs

It's just not worth the risk to let your first choice be drugs when so many health benefits & improvements can occur by seriously pursuing a wellness-focused lifestyle.

CNN On C-Sections

A very good 3-minute-ish video from CNN.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

By The Way


Yes, today is the day I'll be in a whirlwind of activity at the State House & BoBB screening but, for some reason, I felt it necessary to update you guys on the latest from my Wheel of Fortune pursuits.

After not hearing from the producers about a call-back, I reluctantly googled for information about others who auditioned for the Alabama round of play. What I found saddened, but didn't surprise me.

Call-back auditions were held February 11th. And I wasn't invited.

Guess I'll be sticking to this retro, hand-held version (we really have one!) if I want to buy my own vowels.

The Delivery Debate

In Newsweek -- mentions The Business of Being Born!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Kids In Crises

I assure you...I am NOT making fun of the Prattville tornadoes and I am NOT taking lightly how serious the recovery situation is in that area...

HOWEVER :)

Since there were no deaths and since the kid in this picture is smiling and appears to be healthy and strong, I just had to laugh at the "Kids In Crises" headline captioning it on the front page of yesterday's Montgomery Advertiser. I laughed because I thought, "This poor kid IS in crises! Sweet child doesn't have anything to wear but Auburn clothes! Tsk, tsk!"

Friday, February 22, 2008

Anniston Star Article

Whoo hoo!

FROM TODAY'S ANNISTON STAR:
Unexpected ally boosts midwifery bill
By Markeshia Ricks
Star Capitol Correspondent
02-22-2008

MONTGOMERY — A bill that would recognize and license certified professional midwives in Alabama received a boost Thursday from an unlikely ally: a retired physician.

During a public hearing on the matter in the Senate, Sen. Parker Griffith, D-Huntsville, voiced his support for moving the legislation forward.
Griffith, a radiation oncologist and deputy chairman of the Senate Health Committee, said there is no scientific basis for continuing to block certified professional midwives from practicing in Alabama.

Many of the objections to certified professional midwives are theoretical, he said.
"I believe if 22 other states have midwives and after 15 or 20 years they have not rescinded their programs it is because it's safe," he said. "This shouldn't be an issue."

Griffith said that considering the health needs among Alabama's more than 600,000 uninsured people and its high infant-mortality rate, the state's existing health-care providers have had long enough to fix things.

Dr. Don Williamson, state health officer, said one of the solutions to reducing Alabama's high infant-mortality rate is expanding prenatal care through physicians, not licensing midwives.

"There is a reason that the other 26 states haven't done this," he said. "My fear is that we would lose even one baby or one mama because we did this."

Griffith said having the option of using a certified professional midwife would be an opportunity to deliver better health care through collaboration among professionals.

"What I want to see among health-care providers is cooperation, not turf wars and boundary issues because you don't like how someone was trained or because you went to school longer than they did," he said.

Dr. Tom Kincer, a family practice physician and director of Montgomery Family Medicine Residency, said the bill does not foster collaboration, and if it passes he believes physicians will resist working with certified professional midwives.
"There are already certified nurse midwives and they work in hospitals," he said. "The liability is an issue, but under-training is also a concern. I believe observing and participating in 40 deliveries is not enough training."

Dr. Lawrence Jones of Anniston OB/GYN said he believes hospital births are best and he has reservations about even a physician performing an out-of-hospital delivery.
"A lot of the complications of pregnancy can happen all of a sudden during labor," said Jones, who recently moved to Anniston after practicing medicine for 26 years in Nebraska, where lay midwifery is illegal. "With a certified nurse midwife, I don't think I would have trouble working with someone like that, but I don't think I would stick my neck out that far for a lay midwife."

Committee chairwoman Sen. Linda Coleman, D-Birmingham, said the committee would vote on the bill at a later date. She said she hopes the two sides can find some middle ground before the bill is taken up again. Coleman is also the sponsor of the bill in the Senate.

Jennifer Crook Moore, president of the Alabama Birth Coalition, said this is the first time the bill has had a committee member advocate so strongly for it. The House version of the bill was postponed indefinitely earlier this month. "It definitely gives us more hope," Moore said.

The Alabama Birth Coalition will march and then rally at the State House Feb. 26, starting at 11:30 a.m. The coalition also will host a screening of the Ricki Lake film, "The Business of Being Born," at the Capri Theatre in Montgomery.

State House Testimony

You might remember that I said yesterday's efforts at the State House were really GREAT. Today, I'd like to share with you just a teeny morsel of why it was so awesome!

I wish I could post all of the AMAZING advocacy given by the SENATORS for our bill but the notes are just entirely too long. Instead, I will post this. The following is the testimony given in favor of SB 240 :

(I doubt the Moms giving these testimonies would mind their names being attached online but since I've always been funny about it myself, I have removed their last names.)

TESTIMONY 1
Good morning, my name is Cristy _____ and I am a mother of 4 with our 5th blessing on the way, set to arrive in May. My husband and I have been married 9 years and reside in Birmingham.

We are the typical middle class family. We have a house near downtown Bham, two cars, too many toys for the kids to play with, a swing set in the back yard and of course a dog.

Recently, my husband, who has his masters in divinity from Baylor University and who pastors our church downtown was approached by the state to create a non-profit program to help men transition from prison back into society. We accepted their request and thus had to change insurance carriers to eliminate add’l cash outflow, as we started the non-profit with our savings account.

Well, along came our 5th little one and to our surprise our new insurance policy does not cover maternity services for 365 days, and as you can see we can’t wait that long!

We are not quite sure what to do at this point;
1) We can birth unmedicated at the hospital and expect to pay $8-$10,000 out of pocket.

2) We could drive to TN to hire a midwife who is state licensed, but with 4 hour labors we do not feel that is a wise option to spend 2-3 hours of it on the road.

3) We could hire a Certified Professional Midwife who *might* be willing attend us at home, while risking the chance of being arrested and thrown in jail.

4) Or we can have this baby at home with no professional assistance--not an option my husband is thrilled about.

And we are a middle class, well-educated, conservative family. Our family has access to 5 hospitals within a 2-mile radius of our home, yet we can't afford to birth with any of them.

Restricted access to maternity care in Alabama has many faces. The personal one I just shared-- the family who lives in one of the 31 counties with NO hospital maternity services-- the family who is one of the 650,000 Alabamians with NO health insurance-- the family who can’t attend birth classes or prenatal appts. b/c they have limited or no transportation…the list goes on…

The opposition would like to squash this legislation and they would like to incite fear in you all that the risk of homebirth is simply too great. That midwifery care is simply too outdated or not professional enough. Yet they have given you no evidence-based research …just fear-driven opinion.

Senators, there is NO scientific evidence to suggest that planned home births with a qualified attendant is any more dangerous that a low-risk hospital birth. You can refer to tab 3 in your Reference Guide that provides pages upon pages of documented research. The scientific evidence suggest that midwives who possess the CPM credential provide excellent and professional care AND is demonstrated by their national infant mortality rate. (Hold-up and Read the rates from hand-out).

Families in Alabama deserve access to maternity care. Hospitals are closing their doors in rural counties and physicians are flooding the more lucrative, metropolitan areas.

There is a great passage in the Bible from Proverbs 31 that says, "8 Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. 9 Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”

Today, I am humbly asking you to see the fear tactics for what they are and to choose instead to consider the scientific evidence and be a powerful voice for those who are looking to you for help.
Thank you!


Testimony 2
Good Morning. Thank you all for the opportunity to address you today regarding SB240. My name is Jennifer Moore. I am a Certified Professional Midwife living in Birmingham and licensed in Tennessee. I hold an MA and a Master’s of Public Health in Maternal and Child Health. I am also the President of the Alabama Birth Coalition and as such, am here today representing hundreds of Alabama families who are demanding access to state regulated Certified Professional Midwives.

I’d like to take just a minute to address one point with you. Our opposition refers to us as “lay” midwives. I’ve checked every dictionary in my home, and we have a lot of them because my husband is a professor. And they all say that “lay” means untrained, unskilled, unprofessional. I take exception to that because I trained for five years to obtain the CPM credential. I am not untrained or unskilled.

This morning I would like to draw your attention to two documents that should answer the majority of questions you have about SB240. The first is the Legislator’s Reference Guide. In it you will find answers to most issues regarding the licensure of Certified Professional Midwives. For example, you’ll find answers to questions of safety at tab 3, education at tab 5, and malpractice at tab 6. Members of the Alabama Birth Coalition are eager to discuss with you any questions you may have that are not fully addressed in this guide.

The other document, SB240 Discussion Points, is intended to answer your questions about the bill itself. In this overview of the bill, you will find an outline of every section and provision of the bill, and an interpretation, where needed, of specific provisions. SB240 has been over 5 years in the making, and is the result of many meetings with midwives, parents, and our opposition. Italicized text indicates our response to concerns or objections that have been raised.

If you’d please look at the section explaining the definitions, there is one final point I’d like to make. Under the definition of Licensed Midwife, you will find an explanation of the Certified Professional Midwife credential. We selected this credential as the single qualification for a Licensed Midwife for several reasons.

1. The CPM is the only credential that requires training in the knowledge and skills unique to out-of-hospital birth. Twenty-two of the 24 states which regulate out-of-hospital midwives also use this credential. No state has ever rescinded their midwifery program.

2. The credential is legally defensible and psychometrically sound, which reduces the costs of the regulatory process for the state.

3. Using the CPM as the basis for licensure eliminates the state’s responsibility and liability for all aspects of certification, including the ongoing psychometric evaluation of the written examination.

Thank you for your time and your willingness to consider this important piece of legislation.

Testimony 3
My name is Lisa _____. I am a mother of four and I live in Huntsville.

In 2006, AL’s infant mortality rate was 9.0. The Department of Public Health has identified five factors contributing to Alabama’s rising infant mortality rate: low birth weight; teen pregnancies; mother's health status; high rates of smoking, especially among young women; and lack of health insurance. Senator Coleman recommended last week that we find a mother on Medicaid who used a midwife to testify today. We were unable to do so. But I hope to convey to you some of the obstacles poor mothers face in receiving maternity care, and ways midwives could positively address those barriers.

My third pregnancy was covered by Medicaid. At the time, I was living with my in-laws. To get to a prenatal appointment I had to load up my one- and two-year old children and take my mother-in-law to work so that I had a way to get to the clinic. At the health clinic, we waited an average of 2 hours before I was seen. At every visit, nurses questioned why I was having my children so close together. It was clear they didn’t believe my answer that I was using birth control every time I became pregnant. That was one of many things I felt judged for. Why was I living with my in-laws? Why didn’t I get a job? Why did I care so much about natural childbirth? I hated prenatal appointments. I always left feeling like dirt.

Compared to some mothers, however, I was lucky. At least I had a car, and didn’t have to drive a long distance to the appointments. I spoke English, and so did the nurses. I was allowed to bring my children, and didn’t have to find child care I couldn’t afford. All of these issues can be huge hurdles to a mother receiving prenatal care. If a woman has to work so hard to get to the appointment, only to be treated with disrespect, it’s easy to see why our percentage of less than adequate prenatal care is highest in poor counties. And this is where midwifery care could make a real difference. I give my time to this cause because my midwives shared with me their time, their skill and their wisdom. Above all else, they respected me and their respect motivated me to care for myself better during pregnancy than any other time in my life.

I don’t intend to suggest that midwives are the solution to our high infant mortality rate. It would be difficult to overcome the perception that midwives equal racism and poverty. Furthermore, the number of women who will ever choose home birth with a midwife is very low. Just .3% of Alabama births in 2006 occurred outside a hospital. Nationwide the rate is about 1%. Given the low numbers of out-of-hospital births, and the very different kind of care midwives provide, I contend that Dr. Williamson’s claim midwives at home births will increase our infant mortality rate is not based on evidence. In fact, under tab 8 of your reference guide, you can see that in licensed states which track out-of-hospital perinatal and neonatal mortality rates, they are 45 to 85% lower than overall state rates.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Best Thing About Cold, Rainy Days...

Is coming home from them...and putting on cozy lounge clothes...including fuzzy socks...ahh.

Actually, over the past week, it's just been nice to come home period! It's been a busy lobbying week but it's been good. I look forward to being a full-time SAHM again, though.

Today was a TOTALLY awesome day down at the State House. We ain't dead yet! Muahahahaha!

My brain is SO sleepy. I feel a little buzz in fact. Not a good buzz...a fuzziness. A feeling I should probably not be blogging through.

I know y'all have missed me so I thought I'd make this post tonight. Aren't you glad I did?

Night, night.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Late For Alabama

But still a good resource.

I just wish more info was out there when there was still time.

http://www.christiansforronpaul.com/

I Don't Have Time To Write Intelligent Posts


But there's (almost) always time to post a cute picture!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Friday, February 08, 2008

A Letter To The Editor

In response to the T-Town editorial.

So cool.

Sorry For All The Links & Stuff - A Little Update

I know I haven't written much personal stuff lately. I've had some things I could tell you about but then you'd think less of me so I've decided to just skip it.

Seriously, I've been pretty wrapped up in homeschooling (more tweaking needed and enacted today), lobbying, BoBB planning, house-selling, church-stuff-ing, etc. and just haven't done a good job blogging. Sorry.

I REALLY need to get an even better video of Captain walking because it is ADORABLE. He walks everywhere now and it's so darn cute!

Softball & baseball & T-ball sign-ups are this weekend! Here we go! Four playing this year!

Birthdays start next week on the 13th (Captain's) and run through June 22 (Rocky's.) Five kids' birthdays in 5 months. Good times! And, as the paragraph/sentence above states...right in the middle of ball season!

And did I mention lobbying? Yeah...AT LEAST once a month I will lobby at the State House for HB314 and SB240 (same bill presented in House & Senate.)

Thankfully, the children's musical ends this month, my creative movement group works through Easter, and the Adolescence class I'm going to teach only runs for 6 weeks. After those, please make me say 'no.'

I'm sad that I actually DID say 'no' to working at the kids' consignment sale this year. WAH! I will miss the perks that go along with that. I will be selling, though. Need the money for buying the next round of clothing for the kids!

Our house WILL SELL, ya know! The Redland Road Elementary School had its groundbreaking today. THAT is important!

God is working in my life.

OH! One of the coolest things we're doing right now is reading the Bible in a year. We're using this system and have been perfectly consistent so far (and praying to be able to continue, in Jesus' name!) We read one section silently while all sitting together (Psalms so far,) then turn to the OT "history" where Henry & I read (Genesis and starting Exodus this weekend) and finish with New Testament (Luke & Hebrews so far) where the kids each read portions. Of course, we've not completed any of those books so far but the schedule has taken us through large chunks of them. It's REALLY cool. I'm excited to know the kids will have already read the ENTIRE Bible at such young ages, by the end of this year! Isn't that awesome?

Jeremiah 17:7-8 NLT
7 “But blessed are those who trust in the Lord
and have made the Lord their hope and confidence.
8 They are like trees planted along a riverbank,
with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat
or worried by long months of drought.
Their leaves stay green,
and they never stop producing fruit.