Memoirs Of A Modern Housewife

My life is nothing like the Bravo Housewives!

MOMH Update March 11- April 11, 2012


It’s been a lovely couple of weeks here in the Midwest. We were blessed with a very mild winter and temperatures that got up to 80 degrees sometimes. If you reside in Minnesota this is unheard of. We are usually still knee-high in snow until April.I love when the seasons change, preferably the spring and fall. I am anxious for something new, to enter a new season of life. As I threw open the windows of the house to release the staleness of the winter, I deeply breathe in the fresh opportunities to that are set before me.

As  you can see it’s been about a month since my last post. I really enjoy writing because it helps me to process out loud but I also like to hear from you. It’s encouraging that something I love doing may be helping someone else, whether it is with a tip, a different perspective or a laugh.

Sleep Issues And An Overlooked Cause Part 4

As we prepare for Beaner to have his adenoids removed, his lip-tie clipped, tympanostomy tubes (ear tubes) inserted my anxiety is increasing day by day. We’ve consulted with a variety of specialists to make sure we’d looked at everything from all angles and to avoid a repeat surgery because something was overlooked. The last few weeks have been a whirlwind. Every once in a while I question the necessity of the surgery and every time I do something happens that tells me it’s the right thing to do for him. From his frequent waking at night, his sleep-apnea like snoring, his constant ear drum ruptures and infections and also a slight delay in his speech.

 Read more…

Love, Marriage and Finding Our Way

Mr. Incredible and IThe longer I am married and a mom the more I realize that my family is unique (as all are) and that we shouldn’t try to mold our lives to fit others’. Before, when we were trying to make any decisions we would measure them against what others have done and succeeded in, and in some instances that is a necessary and valuable method. Our problems stem from always using that method. The truth is, my husband and I both bring to our marriage our individual upbringings, ideas, dreams and behaviors. Throw in the mix, three children who have their own personalities, needs, temperaments and you don’t have cookie-cut answers. They require examination from all angles sometimes, wisdom, prayer, most of the time patience and sometimes a leap of faith.

Read more…

(in)spired Review

I have the opportunity to review the new Redeemed Collection from DaySpring and I have to say that I was like a kid on Christmas day when the box of fun inspirational items arrived. I will be working on a review for each item and will be posting it next week.

A Woman’s Design

I mentioned that these last few weeks have been a whirlwind. I recently decided to begin taking clients on again and I am so excited about supporting women again. Because I live in a new area I will be spending a lot of time educating the community on labor support and the benefits. I am also looking into connecting with other professionals who support women during their pregnancy; ob’s, midwives, massage therapists, chiropractor’s, etc. Just this last weekend I met with another doula in the next town over. We share the same heart for women, birth philosophies and we just really clicked so we have decided to become each other’s back-ups. I also have a display at a Baby Expo this weekend that I have diligently been preparing for.

I have also started my certification process with Childbirth International to become a Postpartun Doula. I am excited about this process and looking forward to being able to support my birth doula clients during their postpartum period and also other mothers and families who decide support during the “fourth trimester” would help them during the new changes.

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Who Am I? Finding Me In The Midst Of It All


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Recently when I am asked, “What kind of things do you like to do for fun?” or, “What do you do to relax?” I am at a lost. I usually sit there dumbfounded because 1. I can’t think of anything and 2. I realize that I have not made me a priority in a long time. I mean a long time.

The last few years, fun for me has been taking a nap, playing apps or reading or getting through a 30 minute show uninterrupted. I have been thinking a lot today about (my life in general) in this area and had a real heart to heart with Mr. Incredible.

Why is it that we as women lose who we are when we get married and have children? There is something about when children enter the picture that we begin to invest every thing within us into them. Your whole world can become consumed by them. From the moment you find out you’re pregnant your every thought is about them and how what you are doing or not doing is going to affect them. I’m exhausted by the end of the day and when the opportunity comes to go out and do something for myself I have to choose between catching up on sleep or doing something I would love; something that would feed my soul, my womanhood, the adult me. If only I can remember what those things were…

I know this is not the case for all women, some have managed to find a balance between you as an individual and you the mom/wife. This is not my reality. I would suspect that the things that attracted your spouse to you are things that he would love to continue to see in the marriage. He probably misses that…I know mine does. But more importantly, I feel a sense of revitalization when I do tap into something that is true to my (other)self. I adore my children and my husband but I have been watching me, the me he married, the me I knew before, slowly disappear and it is not beneficial to anyone.

So I would like to reconnect with me:

The me who would laugh so loud and hard that the back of my head hurt and tears would stream down my face.

The me who plays air guitar at Third Day concerts and screams…every…single…word…to each song.

The me who would drive without an agenda, without a map, without a care in the world never afraid of being lost.

The me who would sit up and write until the sun rises.

The me who would go to an art museum and sit and stare for hours.

The me who loves history and learning about other cultures, willing to try anything once.

The me who loves until it hurts without abandonment, without fear.

The me who took chances, who didn’t question why, but wondered why not?

The me who would lie in the grass, staring up at the sky with the wind blowing against my face and the smell of grass tickling my (allergic) nose ; )

The me who saw a challenge, looked it square in the eye and plowed right into it.

I love to compete, meet new people, learn new things, old homes, new ideas.

My frustration with life has been not allowing her to be seen.

She’s always been there, along with the mommy me, the wife me.

This is me…too.

Not One, But Two Kids Needing Surgery!!! Part 2


Last week I wrote about Poot’s surgery and how recovery was going (or not), poor baby. After the er visit she was determined not to make a return visit so getting her to drink fluids and take her pain meds became less of a battle. Although, I know that the battle was because she was in excruciating pain. I am not sure I would be any better as a patient under the same circumstances.

Although we can visibly see that she was improving, she had a quick check up with the pediatrician to make sure things were healing well and they were. Poots became aware of what we all were aware of the last two weeks. Her breathe. 

The surgeon warned us during the post-op consultation that her breath would smell worse than death. We thought, oh no biggie we have a dog whose breath can bring you to tears. The surgeon assured us that her breath would be worse. He didn’t lie. As a mother, you don’t want to make your kids feel bad so when I snuggled with her I would tilt my head in a way to catch some fresh air but and to not make her feel bad. Tears did however manage to stream down my face a few times because it really was as bad as he said it would be.

Just as we started getting used to the smell she started to notice it. And it really bothers her. I think she may be regaining her smelling senses after the adenoidectomy and this is how she has been the last few days: 

Grandma bought her a years supply of breath mints and she’s been chugging them down, but it doesn’t help. The smell (because I know you care) is coming from the open wound that is in her mouth. There is no mouth wash or mint that will exstinguish this fire. Just time.

On another note. We were trying to hold off on Beaner’s surgery as long as we can, but it is clear we can’t put it off much longer. Along with the recovery of Poots, Beaner was smacked down by not one, but two ear infections. It was abrupt and out of the blue like they always are and the left eardrum ruptured for the second time. This is starting to become a pattern caused by his enlarged adenoids. They are restricting his already tiny eardrums and fluid can’t come and go even with the mildest of colds. So, now that Poots is on the mends we begin the process of getting Beaner ready for his surgery. Thank God it won’t be as long and painful as Poots (she had her adenoids and tonsils removed) and I have the mighty weapon of just snuggling up and nursing him to make sure he stays hydrated. 

MOMH Weekly Update March 4- 10, 2012


Not One, But Two Kids Needing Surgery!!! Part 2

Although we can visibly see that she was improving, she had a quick check up with the pediatrician to make sure things were healing well and they were. Poots became aware of what we all were aware of the last two weeks. Her breathe. The surgeon warned us during the post-op consultation that her breath would smell worse than death. We thought, oh no biggie we have a dog whose breath can bring you to tears. The surgeon assured us that her breath would be worse. He didn’t lie. Read more…

Who Am I? Finding Me In The Midst Of It All

Why is it that we as women lose who we are when we get married and have children?There is something about when children enter the picture that we begin to invest every thing within us into them. Your whole world can become consumed by them. From the moment you find out you’re pregnant your every thought is about them and how what you are doing or not doing is going to affect them. I’m exhausted by the end of the day and when the opportunity comes to go out and do something for myself I have to choose between catching up on sleep or doing something I would love; something that would feed my soul, my womanhood, the adult me. If only I can remember what those things were… Read more…

A Woman’s Design

I have updated my availability for the remainder of the year. These dates can be found on my website www.awomansdesign.com, Doulas.com and DoulaMatch.net. If you have any questions about what a birth doula does and what we don’t do I’d be happy to chat via email , on my Facebook fan page or (612) 801-9886. I love talking all things birthy…just ask my poor hubby!

****I still need to complete my Birth Doula Certification through DONA, which was also put on hold when I couldn’t take on any clients during my pregnancy. I would love to have this completed by July 1st, and just need to attend three more births between now and then. If you know anyone who is due in the next few months, please feel free to pass my info along and I would love to see if I may be able to meet her birthing needs.*** I will be offering a discount because of my time restraints.***

A Woman’s Design Update


A Woman’s Design

I stepped away from actively taking on new doula clients during my pregnancy with Beaner and during the first year to allow my body to recover and adjust to all the changes that were taking place.

Mr. Incredible and I were discussing plans for after Beaner (our last babe) start school full-time. I feel strongly in my heart that I need to be available to my kids even when they are in school. I am just as busy with my high-schooler as I am with my preschooler and expect the same when Beaner starts school. I would like to be able to contribute during that time financially with my new free time and still be accessible/flexible with the kid’s needs.

After praying and talking I decided that I would start to take on new clients (which I was planning on doing once I felt comfortable with leaving Beaner for an extended period of time), and also start my certification for being a Post-Partum Doula. This is also a passion of mine, helping new mothers during the first few weeks after having a baby and I plan on taking on more of these clients once Beaner starts school. I have also been working on a book, a survival guide during the postpartum period and will be teaching a class starting in April based on it.Image

*Stay tune for details of the book’s completion and how you can get a copy.

I still need to complete my Birth Doula Certification through DONA, which was also put on hold when I couldn’t take on any clients during my pregnancy. I would love to have this completed by July 1st, and just need to attend three more births between now and then. If you know anyone who is due in the next few months, please feel free to pass my info along and I would love to see if I may be able to meet her birthing needs.*** I will be offering a discount because of my time restraints.***

Not One, But Two Kids Needing Surgery!!!


After we were consulting with different pediatricians and specialists for Beaner we started to realize that Poots had the same symptoms (minus the nursing issues). She would sleep 10 hours at night and wake up exhausted. She would be moody and irrational throughout the day. She has had bags under her eyes for years and had began snoring like a drunk person passed out on the floor. Over the years we’ve adjusted her diet in case it was a food allergies or ADD/ADHD causing her behavior issues but nothing worked for too long.

When we had her seen by the ENT (Ear, Nose, & Throat) we were told that her adenoids were bigger than he expected, her left tonsil was also unusually large and her uvula was split like a pair of jeans. The uvula issue was the beginning of a cleft palate that never fully developed. He believed that this combination may be stopping her from getting quality sleep therefore the cause of some of her behavior issues. After discussing it with Mr. Incredible we thought it was the best thing to do and had her surgery scheduled within two weeks.

Poots’ attitude had been surprisingly positive. We were telling her just general terms about the surgery not a lot of details, as to not confuse or worry her. “The doctor is just going to clean your nose and throat out so that you can sleep better at night and feel better during the day. You will be asleep when this happens. We will be right there when you wake up. Oh and you get to have a ton of ice cream and popsicles.” She was pretty excited about being in a better mood during the day but even more so about the unlimited ice cream. The closer the surgery got, the more her anxiety increased but we were able to comfort her.

The day of the surgery I was on edge. Leading up to it, I kept double-guessing the decision. “Is this the best thing for her?” “What if she has issues with the general anesthesia?” It was starting to get overwhelming and I began to fight a lot with Mr. Incredible…about everything.

The whole family went to the surgery center. Riggity watched Beaner in the family room, while Mr. Incredible and I helped to get Poots prepped for surgery. We also consulted with the anesthesiologist, the surgeon and nurses. When it was time to go back, I went with Poots while she got her anesthesia. I had already watched Riggity when she was a baby go under with anesthesia and it was just as hard to see Poots. The anesthesiologist explained all that I would see and reassured me that it was normal. I held her hand as she squeezed mine and finally, she gently let it go. I gave her a kiss on the cheek and walked back to the family room with the nurse. I couldn’t go through the door because I began to sob uncontrollably. The sweet nurse insisted I sit as she went to get me some ice water. She let me cry and talk and wouldn’t let me leave until she thought I was okay. I won’t describe what it looks like to watch someone, especially your child, go under, but I will say it was hard to watch. I think part of the tears were what I’d just seen but also all of the worry and stress leading up to the surgery.

The surgery was fast and went perfectly. The surgeon said she had the biggest adenoids he’d seen on such a little girl and that having them removed was a good call because her breathing was being obstructed. He also said her tonsils showed signs of chronic tonsillitis. This was such a comfort to us, especially me who was questioning the necessity towards the end. As soon as she started stirring they called for us back in recovery. My sweet baby had been brave; up until that point. The nurse gave her to me as I rocked her in the rocking chair and she cried for about an hour. We were warned that she may be a bit emotional and she was. I was so glad to be there to snuggle with her.

Recovery has been rougher than expected, but she is showing us how strong she is. Yesterday we had to take her children’s hospital as she’d become dehydrated and her pain was out of control. She really went downhill fast after a cycle of vomiting more than drinking, and being unable to take or hold down her medicine. She wasn’t using the bathroom and she was incredibly lethargic.

At the hospital, they gave her a few hours of iv fluids, anti-nausea meds and a different pain med. They think her body was having a hard time metabolizing the Tylenol Codeine which was making her incredibly nauseous. After a tonsillectomy, you have to drink even through the pain because It’s an important part of the healing process, but if you’re nauseous you don’t want to drink. This started the downward spiral.

During her stay last night she quickly ate four popsicles….it was so nice to see her eat…something. We’re home now and the pain is being manage with three different meds now (including a anti-nausea med). She is definitely feeling better, than yesterday. As I write this she is drawing pictures of all the food she wants to eat when she can.

Big thanks to Grandma for all the meals, and for her Aunty for getting me out of the house and being available for any needs big or small. Big sister Riggity for being such a helper the last few days with both kids and Mr. Incredible for being such a sweet daddy and for not taking the days leading up to and the day of surgery personal. All of the prayers and gifts that have been sent, we really appreciate it. We are on the road to recovery now and I am looking forward to seeing her feeling 100% and the benefits of a good nights rest.

MOMH Weekly Update February 26- March 3, 2012


I am trying something new. Instead of several different postings throughout the week I am going to (attempt) to create a weekly digest of posts. From there, readers will be able to select a topic that interests them specifically and skip over the rest. I will also start to include updates on A Woman’s Design as I am beginning to take on more clients and make plans for the future in regards to my business. With everything going on (you’ll see below), this is the most efficient (and probably consistent) way to blog for me right now. Let me know what you think. Blessings, NOH

(Update) Sleep Issues And An Overlooked Cause Part 3

The last time I posted about Beaner and his sleep issues we had an appointment scheduled to see a pediatric ENT. Since then we have had two consultations. The first guy’s bedside manner was awful and he just said, “Yes, he has a lip-tie and enlarged adenoids, not sure about the tongue-tie but I guess I can check for it while he is under.” Didn’t think twice about surgery for our one year old and also clearly did not respect the opinion of the lactation consultants and the pediatrician. We immediately knew that if we decided to have the surgery that he would not be anywhere near our baby. Read More…

Not One, But Two Kids Needing Surgery!!!

Can’t sleep…thinking about how blessed I am. Poots had to have her adenoids and tonsils removed. After we were consulting with different pediatricians and specialists for Beaner we started to realize that she had the same symptoms (minus the nursing issues). She would sleep 10 hours at night and wake up exhausted. She would be moody and irrational throughout the day. She has had bags under her eyes for years and has began snoring like a drunk person passed out on the floor. Over the years we’ve adjusted her diet in case it was a food allergies or ADD/ADHD causing her behavior issues but nothing work for long. When we had her seen by the ENT we were told that her adenoids were bigger than he expected, her left tonsil was also unusually large and her uvula was split like a pair of jeans. The uvula issue was the beginning of a cleft palate that never fully developed. He believed that this combination may be stopping her from getting quality sleep therefore the cause of some of her behavior issues. After discussing it with Mr. Incredible we thought it was the best thing to do and had her surgery scheduled within two weeks. Read more…

A Woman’s Design- Plans For The Future

I stepped away from actively taking on new doula clients during my pregnancy with Beaner and during the first year to allow my body to recover and adjust to all the changes that were taking place. Read more…

A Woman’s Design Update


A Woman’s Design

I stepped away from actively taking on new doula clients during my pregnancy with Beaner and during the first year to allow my body to recover and adjust to all the changes that were taking place.  

Mr. Incredible and I were discussing plans for after Beaner (our last babe) start school full-time. I feel strongly in my heart that I need to be available to my kids even when they are in school. I am just as busy with my high-schooler as I am with my preschooler and expect the same when Beaner starts school. I would like to be able to contribute during that time financially with my new free time and still be accessible/flexible with the kid’s needs.

After praying and talking I decided that I would start to take on new clients (which I was planning on doing once I felt comfortable with leaving Beaner for an extended period of time), and also start my certification for being a Post-Partum Doula. This is also a passion of mine, helping new mothers during the first few weeks after having a baby and I plan on taking on more of these clients once Beaner starts school. I have also been working on a book- a survival guide during the post-partum period and will be teaching a class starting in April based on it.Image

*Stay tune for details of the books completion and how you can get a copy.

I still need to complete my Birth Doula Certification through DONA, which was also put on hold when I couldn’t take on any clients during my pregnancy. I would love to have this completed by July 1st, and just need to attend three more births between now and then. If you know anyone who is due in the next few months, please feel free to pass my info along and I would love to see if I may be able to meet her birthing needs.*** I will be offering a discount because of my time restraints.***

(Update) Sleep Issues And An Overlooked Cause Part 3


English: A pediatric patient prepared for a po...

Image via Wikipedia

The last time I posted about Beaner and his sleep issues we had an appointment scheduled to see a pediatric ENT. Since then we have had two consultations. The first guy’s bedside manner was awful and he just said, “Yes, he has a lip-tie and enlarged adenoids, not sure about the tongue-tie but I guess I can check for it while he is under.” Didn’t think twice about surgery for our one year old and also clearly did not respect the opinion of the lactation consultants and the pediatrician. We immediately knew that if we decided to have the surgery that he would not be anywhere near our baby.

We scheduled an appointment for Beaner to see the same pediatric ENT Poots saw and we really like him. He was patient, considerate when he explained the pros and cons of doing anything. He agreed his adenoids were indeed enlarged, he had a lip-tie and wasn’t 100% sure about the tongue-tie but wasn’t dismissive about it. His suggestion was to wait on the surgery because he felt like something was being overlooked with Beaner’s tongue coordination. He recommended we see a speech/voice therapist first to make sure we aren’t overlooking anything so that he doesn’t end up needing more than one surgery.

Mr. Incredible and I agreed. We are patient and do not want to rush anything, he is so little and at this point I seem to be suffering the most from lack of sleep not him. We are taking care of Poots now and when she is fully recovered will continue to devote time to getting Beaner sleeping better.

The Richest Man I Know


Today we attended a beautiful home-going for our former Pastor, Frank Sanders. “Former hockey standout and North St. Paul High School Distinguished Alumni, University of MN Gopher, Minnesota Fighting Saint and US Olympian hockey player. Pastor of Spirit of Life Bible Church, Woodbury, MN.”

Pastor Frank Sanders

The first time we sat in a church service at Spirit of Life Bible Church, Pastor Frank was preaching. I am not sure what the message was about as it was over four years ago but I do remember leaning over to Mr. Incredible saying, “Why is this guy yelling…I feel like he’s yelling at us?” I was on the fence about staying but something compelled me to not only stay, but to continue to keep coming back. It didn’t take me long to realize that the yelling was fueled by passion. A passion for the things of God. A passion for the community he was the shepard over.

This community welcomed my family and I with hugs and prayers. It was as if we always belonged there. There was a sense of family throughout from the children to the elders. I have to believe that a church so loving and accepting could only be that way because it trickles down from the leadership.

Pastor Frank was very approachable and sincere with his love for his family, friends, congregants and especially Jesus. He was not ashamed of the gospel or his relationship with his Savior. He could often be seen singing loudly with his hands thrown up and tears streaming down his face. Most of the times he could be found placing a gentle hand on a shoulder and uttering prayers on someone’s behalf.

He was a big guy with an even bigger heart. He would take time out to meet with Mr. Incredible when there was something pressing on his heart and offered sound wisdom and advice about marriage, family and finances. He never claimed to be perfect, often boasting of his weaknesses to glorify God’s strength.

Minnesota Fighting Saints

Image via Wikipedia

Frank had the opportunity to play hockey professionally, first with the Boston Bruins and then in the upstart WHA with the Minnesota Fighting Saints. After one year with the Minnesota Fighting Saints he felt the call of God on his life and went into the ministry graduating from the Apostolic Bible Institute.

I only knew Pastor Frank for a few years but what I have learned from him has been priceless:

1. There is a peace and joy in following God’s path for your life that money can’t buy.

2. Following God’s path for your life does not mean you will not face hardships.

3. Having a sincere relationship with Jesus is possible and actually living it out speaks louder than words.

4. There were several hundred people at the service today, it was apparent that he poured so much of himself into so many people over his lifetime. You never know whose life you may touch and impact everyday.

5. Most importantly, He was loved and adored by his wife, children and grandchildren. He placed an incredibly high value on family.

My heart goes out to his wife, Kathy, children, Timothy (Tricia), Jennifer (James) Mains and Jeremy (Lana); grandchildren, Owen and Declynn Sanders, Haley, Ayden, Charlie and Benjamin Mains, Jacob, Brennen, Caleb and Keegan Sanders; brother, Allen (Nancy) Olsen; sisters, Lillian (Gary) Weisbrod, Bonnie Weisbrod and Rebecca (James) Payzant; many nieces, nephews and countless friends, family and the church family of Spirit of Life Bible Church. Pastor Frank you truly will be missed.

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