Thoughts For Your Birth Experience

As you think about the birth of your baby what comes to mind?  There are many different choices and options.  Most in America decide to deliver their babies in hospitals.  There are a ton of reasons why this is the primary choice:  safety, resources available, doctor’s preference…..  If your baby is born in a hospital and there are any extenuating circumstances you are in the best place to provide care.  Yet, there are negative points to delivering in a hospital:  more types of infection present, the thought that you might be forced into medical procedures you prefer not to go through, the rules at the hospital, etc.

Another possibility is a birthing center.  Such a center is available to provide less stringent rules and a less regimented environment.  Because only baby deliveries happen in these places there is less opportunity for crossover germs and the staff is trained in less institutional measures.  A midwife oversees the delivery and the client has more input in the process.  A back up hospital is selected in case there is a need.

A third option is a home birth.  A midwife would be present for labor and delivery.  Dad and mom have met with and become comfortable with the midwife they choose.  They ask questions and prepare everything as the midwife suggests.  Some insurance companies shy away from home births.  Before you decide which birth experience you wish, check with your insurance company to see which they cover.

In any of these birth options I strongly suggest you have an advocate with you.  This is someone who knows you well.  A person with whom you have discussed your thoughts and wishes for your birth experience.  It is someone you trust to make decisions for you when you are in labor and not thinking clearly.  It is best if this advocate is not your birth partner or spouse.   In the long shot that there are difficult decisions to make you want your advocate to be someone who has ‘been there done that’.  In other words, someone who has delivered a baby or two themselves.  This person understands your thoughts and desires and is strong enough to represent your wishes to the medical staff present.  You and your partner are cognoscente and will make any major decisions.  This person will back you up and make things clear both to you and for you.  Certified birth doulas are specifically trained to do this.

If you have chosen to deliver at a hospital or a birthing center medical staff will be present.  You could bring a qualified friend or a birth doula with you.  A certified birth doula is trained to help you though the process of birth.  She will meet you during your pregnancy and talk through the preparation and birth process with you.  She will help you make choices for your birth plan and process ahead of time.

If you have chosen to deliver at home you will need to arrange for a mid-wife.  In my home state of California it is required by law that you have either a licensed midwife or a medical doctor at your delivery.  Other states may have other possibilities but I recommend you have either of these professionals with you for your protection and your baby’s.  Both an MD and a mid-wife will have a back up hospital ready incase there is a need.  Both are professionally trained to deliver babies and both should have extensive experience doing so.  Both an MD and a midwife will monitor your pregnancy, testing for problems and measuring the growth of your baby.  They will help you learn the possible due date of your baby and discuss delivery options with you.

Hopefully this has not been overwhelming for you.  If you are early in your pregnancy you need to be monitored by an Obstetrician or mid-wife for your protection.  No matter which mode of delivery you select walking through your pregnancy with a medically trained individual is vital.  I am happy to help you select such a professional if you need suggestions.






Understanding What You Can Control And What You Can Not

The diagram below looks at different parts of our lives and differentiates between those we can control and those we can not.   This is a healthy exercise. Worrying about things over which we have no control is a waste of time.  We have no control over which supplies the stores will have today.  Loosing sleep over this, fretting over it, focusing on it will only make you unhappy.  You have no control over how long the ‘shelter in place’ rules will apply or how others will respond.

What do you control?  You control your own response.  Are you at peace?  Are you kind to those around you, helping them figure out ways to meet their needs?  Thinking on the things you are able to impact is empowering.  It helps you realize you are not at the mercy of circumstances.  Focusing on the needs of others does the same thing.

I cannot control.jpg

Two Very Simple Ways to Avoid the Corona Virus

Below is a link to an interview with a bio-chemist mom.  She is military trained in biological warfare, with a Masters Degree and working on a PhD.  Her ideas are very practical and simple.

I encourage  you to listen to the 50 minute interview.  She has many ideas that will help you in your daily life to increase your immunities and protect those you love.

Her practical suggestions:

  1.  Increase you body heat.  The Corona virus is very susceptible to heat.  Keep your body heat at a normal rate and you will kill the virus before it has the opportunity to invade your system.  It dies around 85* Fahrenheit.  If you are warm you body temperature should be 98.6* F.  Wear a scarf to keep your neck warm.  Keep doors and windows closed at home.  Turn off fans.  When you go out wear a hat to protect your ears.  Drink hot water continually.
  2. Eliminate all sugar until the threat subsidies.  Any kind of sugar diminishes your body’s natural immunities.   Wines, starches, processed sugars, ice cream, sodas, fruit, candy, cookies, pastries, etc. should be avoided during this time.


Listen to this podcast.  You will learn her reasoning behind these ideas.  It will help you to realize you can do things to help your family.  You will feel empowered and it will relieve many of the fears you are experiencing.

Keeping It Light!!!

Just for the fun of it I am sharing the MEM”S and photos that have given me the greatest laughs!  You have all seen them.  The quotes on social media that hit your funny bone!  As we sink into the insanity that has become our daily existence (in Orange County we are under ‘shelter in place’ due to COVED-19) we have to seek out ways to cope.  My choice of antidepressent is laughter.  Some of these were so funny to me, at the time I could not even read them aloud!!!!  Please pass on those that hit you as the funniest!!!








Someone’s idea of a gas mask!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Why doesn’t Tarzan have a beard when he lives in the jungle without a razor?

Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are flat?

Why do banks charge a fee on ‘insufficient funds’ when they know there is not enough?

Why do Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?

Whose idea was it to put an ‘S’ in the word ‘lisp’?

What is the speed of darkness?




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Finding Your Calm In The Storm

As a new parent you are aware of everything.  The media hype on the Coronavirus has been overwhelming!  Every where you look there are shortages. terrifying articles, warnings, and fear.  How do you digest all this information and make the best choices for your family?

First, take a deep breath and center yourself.  Do not allow yourself to be swept away in the tumult.  There are always voices of reason in the insanity.  These voices speak truth and calm in the midst of those shouting destruction.

Surround yourself with wise people whose counsel your respect.  As a new parent you are already feeling and experiencing stress.  This is part of going through events for the first time.  The responsibility of making decisions for someone other than just you is huge.  The choices you make for your baby are major.

As a new parent you are hyper focused on the needs of your baby.  This is as it should be.  If you have any questions or concerns ask!!!!  Ask your relatives and friends.  Call your pediatrician.  Better to be the irritating new parent than to not obtain the information you need.

The greatest concern with Coronavirus is reparatory problems.  If your baby is struggling to breath get help.  Better to be safe than sorry.  New babies are just learning to breath outside the womb.  They often have erratic breaths.  I encourage you to be very aware.  No one knows your baby as well as you do.  If your baby is having difficulty breathing go to the doctor’s office or the Emergency Room at your local hospital.  Do not sit in a room full of sick people.  Have someone else go with you who can wait to be called while you keep your baby away from those who are ill.  If it is not too cold, stay in the car with your baby until you are called to see the doctor.  If that doesn’t work keep your baby in a wrap with her face against your chest, covered with a blanket.  This will minimize the germs close to her.

This could make it more difficult, but I encourage you not to go to an urgent care facility.  Go directly to your pediatrician, midwife, or hospital.  You want care from a facility that has your baby’s medical records available.  You want continuity of care.  Once your doctor is aware of the issues your baby is experiencing you want him or her to be the one making medical decisions for your baby.  Involving more doctors or facilities than necessary only opens the door to more problems.  If you can not get to your pediatrician ask him or her where you should go.

My son and his wife had their fourth baby in early February.  It is now March 11.  Their son is five weeks old.  He spent most of the last week in the hospital with respiratory issues.  He is struggling with RSV, Respiratory Syncytial Virus.  This is a virus very common in babies.  It is dangerous in babies under the age of 2 months.  With the concern over the Coronavirus they took him in at the first sign of respiratory issues.  Because he is their fourth, they had a good idea what to look for.

This is our family’s personal experience with reparatory issues in a new born.  DO NOT MESS AROUND!!!!  If you are concerned for your child get help!!!  The best situation is to get to your own pediatrician, midwife or doctor.  If you have concerns call your health care provider and you will be given instructions.

Hugs and Kisses as you care for your little ones!!!  JUDY

Products You Can Use To Protect Your Family

Below find a list of the products endorsed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to protect against the spread of the coronavirus.

Don’t be overwhelmed by the media frenzy. You are a smart person. Follow normal procedures for keeping clean. Wash your hands often, keep your hands away from your face, when in public use disinfectant wipes on grocery carts, etc.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says for “disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective.”

Here are some of the registered disinfectants on the EPA’s list
• Clorox Disinfecting Wipes
• Clorox Commercial Solutions
• Clorox Disinfecting Spray
• Clorox Multi-Surface Cleaner + Bleach
• Klercide 70/30
• Lonza Formulation
• Lysol Clean & Fresh Multi-Surface Cleaner
• Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist
• Lysol Heavy-Duty Cleaner Disinfectant Concentrate
• Oxycide Daily Disinfectant Cleaner
• Peak Disinfectant Wipes
• Peroxide Multi Surface Cleaner and Disinfectant
• Peroxide Disinfectant and Glass Cleaner
• Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Wipes
• Sani-Prime Germicidal Disposable Wipe
• Sani-Prime Germicidal Spray

Don’t Try To Do This Alone…….

Becoming a mother is the greatest life change you will ever experience!!!  When you marry, you take on a new roommate, friend, partner.  It is an enormous change in your life!!  You are no longer an individual, you are part of a team.  You go places together, make decisions together, consider the thoughts and feelings of the other.  However this other person can dress himself, feed himself, make choices and express himself.  When you become a parent you do not have these luxuries!

When you become a parent you have responsibility for the very survival of an innocent helpless individual!  This baby can do literally nothing for herself!!!!!  You are her only option!  In addition, you are recovering from nine months of growing another human.  You are healing from labor, perhaps major surgery,  you are learning a New Normal.  Everything in your life has changed!

YOU NEED HELP!!!!  In ages past family has come in to support new families.  Grandmas and aunties encourage Mommy.  They have ‘been there, done that’ and bring a wealth of experience to the table.  Dads and uncles help new Fathers navigate the path they are on, helping Mommy, learning to comfort and support.

In our urbanized culture this wealth of information and support is sometimes lacking.  Thus, the insurgence of the Postpartum Doula Industry!!!  Women who have ‘been there done that’ and want to assist you in smoothing the way to success.


Postpartum Doulas Are The Support System All New Mothers Need

Heather Marcoux Apr 02, 2019

When we look back through history it is rare to find cultures where a mother’s extended family and community did not support her during the perinatal period, but the modern emphasis on independence and individualism has changed that.

Becoming a mother is the greatest change you will ever make.

Many of us do not have a built-in social support network to help us in those difficult days of early motherhood. A new mom in 2019 may find her close relatives live on the other side of the country, and she doesn’t know her neighbor’s names. Or, she may be surrounded by people who would love to support her—but simply don’t have the experience or time to be of service to her.

This is why we need more postpartum doulas and why more women should have access to them.

Like birth doulas, who help a mother during birth, postpartum doulas aim to empower and support mothers during a vulnerable time in their lives.

They are part lactation consultant, part baby-whisperer, part parenting coach and part therapist, and they can help new parents feel less alone and more confident as their lives change so drastically. But getting a postpartum doula to help you through the fourth trimester can be expensive. As Today recently reported, in America, the cost of hiring a doula “varies from state to state and most people pay out of pocket.” It can be thousands of dollars, a cost too high for many families.

But in America and other western nations where mothers no longer have that built-in community, women are hoping to make doula services more accessible, and suggest we need to stop acting like hiring a doula is akin to hiring a housekeeper and incorporate the service into health care funding. “It seems like a luxury, but for many cultures it [postnatal care] was just a necessity, and I think we need to start looking at it like that too,” Shelley McClure, a postnatal doula and educator in Australia tells ABC News.

One of McClure’s clients, Taycee-Lee Jones, decided to pay for a postpartum doula after welcoming her fourth baby. Paying McClure to help her wasn’t a luxury. It was what she needed to do to survive as her partner had to go back to work quickly. “We don’t have that support that we used to have from our community. We don’t have sisters and aunties all coming to provide that support,” she says. “Shelley as a postpartum doula, came around, brought food, did my dishes, gave me a foot rub, checked in with how I was doing,” she explains, suggesting that the kind of in-home care she received from Shelley could help prevent postpartum depression and should be standard.

Shannon Sproule, a postpartum doula with Full Circle Birth Collective in Edmonton, Canada, agrees. She tells Global News her packages start at $120 for one four-hour session of in-home postpartum care. She recognizes that not everyone can afford that, and believed the future of postpartum care needs to include access to doulas through public programs.

Third Installation of Nourishing Yourself Suggestions

This is the final segment of ideas to start your 2020 with a stable and well thought out plan. Please look over the previous two blog entries to read the entire article.  No one will want to incorporate all these ideas.  Have fun with them and see which ones you like best!!!


30 Ideas to Nourish Your Life

by : CATHERINE BEARD             

Goals To Nourish Your Soul

Ah, the soul (also referred to as the spirit). I’m sure it means something different to everyone, but I like to think of it as everything that makes up who you are aside from your mind and body. It could involve your relationships, religion, job, hobbies, interests, etc.  However you define the soul, it’s vital that you take care of it and find what makes you happiest. Here are 10 ideas to help nourish your soul:


Make sleep a priority by creating your own night routine using this post and sticking to it for a whole month. Going to bed early doesn’t make you a grandma, okay? Give yourself permission to rest.


See what your hometown and the surrounding area has to offer by visiting two places you’ve never been before. Who says you have to take a plane to travel?


Whether you want to start learning a new language or something creative like calligraphy, make some time to challenge your brain in a new way. Brit + Co has an extensive selection of creative workshops you can take online (think lettering, photography, and weaving).


If you’ve been meaning to declutter your home for months, take the plunge and get it done with this plan I put together! By decluttering, you can make your space more relaxing and inviting so that you have one less thing that stresses you out!


In order to save money and get a little wiser with your spending, try budgeting out your money for the month and keeping your cash in envelopes. You’ll start to be more conscious of how you spend your paychecks, and your bank account is going to thank you! Check out Dave Ramsey’s guide to getting started.


Whether it’s a task that’s just been nagging at your forever, or something bigger that you’ve been wanting to start, just get started! Break it out into 30 small chunks and do one task each day throughout the month.


And by this I mean your hair! Try giving your locks a break for a month without heat styling. You’ll save time in the morning and get your hair back into a healthier state.


Give back to your community by volunteering – even for just a day! It’ll make you feel good, and you’ll be doing a whole lot of good for others. Double whammy!


I’m sure we all have someone we’ve been meaning to get in touch with for a while, whether that be your grandma or an old friend from school (or maybe even a blogger you want to collaborate with). Set yourself a goal to finally connect with them and ask them some genuinely thoughtful questions.


If you’re tired of feeling like you have nothing to wear or you just feel overwhelmed by your closet, why not start a capsule wardrobe? It’s basically a way to ensure that every item in your closet goes with the rest of your clothes so you always have something to wear (and it’ll take you less time to get ready in the morning).






Second Installation of ‘Nourish Yourself” Info.

This article is fantastic.  It some with thirty simple ideas for improving your everyday life.  Rather than present all thirty at once, I chose to break it up in to three installments. this one covers enjoyable ways to nourish yourself physically.  Enjoy and let me know what you think.


                       30 Ideas to Nourish Your Life

by : CATHERINE BEARD              

Goals To Nourish Your Body

We all know how important exercise is, but finding the motivation and time to actually do it is always a struggle. If you break this larger goal into smaller chunks, you’ll find it much easier to find something that works for you and stick to it. Here are 10 ways to nourish your body:


Going for a walk after dinner was probably one of my favorite goals that I set for myself. It really helps to reset your brain, let your food digest, and get a nice healthy dose of fresh air before returning back to your desk or couch.


I’ve been trying to cut out coffee for so long now because I really don’t think it agrees with my body (but I love the taste and smell, y’know?). If you feel like it’s making you dehydrated and it’s breaking your bank account, try switching your usual coffee or soda for a cup of tea.


If you struggle to squeeze in gym time (or just don’t have the motivation), tell yourself you only have to work out for 10 minutes. That way, you’re more likely to just get started because it doesn’t seem like a huge commitment. You’ll probably even keep going for longer than 10 minutes once you’re over the initial hurdle of getting started.


I truly envy anyone who manages to get their daily quota of vegetables in. Fruit is easy enough for me, but I really struggle when it comes to veggies! Decide how many portions you’d like to eat per day, and do a little bit of Pinterest searching for recipes that incorporate veggies (or better yet, ones where you can’t even tell there are veggies in them).


Yoga with Adriene put together an epic 30-day yoga plan that’s perfect for any level of yogi. If you’ve been meaning to try yoga or want to start doing it more regularly, I highly recommend taking the challenge.


If you’re tired of having nothing to eat or spending all of your money on fast food, try setting yourself a goal to meal prep each week for a month (here’s my how-to guide). It’ll save you a whole bunch of time, and you’re much more likely to make healthy choices.


Consistency is really important when it comes to your health, and having a workout plan is going to help you stay on track and get you closer to meeting your overall wellness goals. Try following this plan I used during the summer (includes a free workout calendar)!


There are so many benefits to drinking water aside from the fact that your body needs it to survive. Staying hydrated keeps your brain alert and makes your skin glow, yo! Vow to keep a water bottle with you at all times for a month, and see how much better you feel from all of that goodness.


Want to work on your buns and get a Beyoncé booty? Try this 30-day squat challenge from PopSugar!


If you’re really struggling to exercise regularly, maybe you need to try a new kind of exercise. There’s a whole world out there beyond the gym! Challenge yourself to try a new form of exercise during the month. You could try pilateskickboxing, crossfit, karate, zumbahip hop, barre…the possibilities are endless!



Have a Wonderful Valentines Day!!!!!

Beautiful Valentines Day quotes following……………………….

Baby yourself today!  Take a walk in the sunshine.  (Yes, I live in Southern California.  And, yes, that beautiful sun is shining!!  Ha!  Ha!).  Take your precious little one out and treat yourself to a yummy cup of coffee.  Sit in a park and enjoy your lunch!  There are a million and and one fun inexpensive ways to pat yourself on the back and enjoy today.

If you live somewhere where being out of doors is not possible enjoy a walk in a heated mall!  Find an indoor restaurant and have a treat.  For many years the only restaurants I frequented were fast food restaurants with indoor play yards.  Hay, you do what you gotta do!  There will be years of having lovely lunches with your friends once your kiddos are otherwise occupied.  Figure out fun things to do with them now!

Make a special dinner for you and your Honey.  Share it after the little one/ones are in bed.  Skip purchasing flowers, they are way to expensive because of the holiday.  Put a photo of the two of you on the table.  A reminder that the two of you are the foundation for this beautiful family you created.  Share a bubble bath, cup of tea by the fire, what ever you enjoy most.  Just a few moments of special time will confirm to you both how special you are to each other.

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY from my home to yours!!!

“Love doesn’t make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.” – Franklin P. Jones, Engineer

“Grow old with me! The best is yet to be.” – Robert Browning, Poet

“It is astonishing how little one feels alone when one loves.” – John Bulwer, Physician

“Love is the greatest refreshment in life.” – Pablo Picasso, Artist

“Where there is love, there is life.” – Mahatma Ghandi, Civil Rights Leader

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller, Author

“There are never enough I Love You’s.” – Lenny Bruce, Comedian

“Each time you love, love as deeply as if it were forever.” – Audre Lorde, Civil Rights Activist

“Love is something eternal; the aspect may change, but not the essence.” – Vincent van Gogh, Artist

“A true lover always feels in debt to the one he loves.” – Ralph W. Sockman, Pastor

“Loving is not just looking at each other, it’s looking in the same direction.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Poet

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu, Philosopher

“The heart has its reasons, which reason knows not.” – Blaise Pascal, Mathematician

Fun Valentines Quotes……………………

“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” – Charles M. Schulz, Cartoonist

“True love comes quietly, without banners or flashing lights. If you hear bells, get your ears checked.” – Erich Segal, Author

“I love Mickey Mouse more than any woman I have ever known.” – Walt Disney, Animator

“I want a man who’s kind and understanding. Is that too much to ask of a millionaire?” – Zsa Zsa Gabor, Actress

“It’s better to have loved and lost than to have to do forty pounds of laundry a week.” – Laurence J. Peter, Educator

“Without Valentine’s Day, February would be…well, January.” – Jim Gaffigan, Comedian

“Love is what you’ve been through with somebody.” – James Thurber, Cartoonist

Have so much fun today!!  I wish you the very best!  JUDY