Monday, April 10, 2017

A Day in My Life: Birth Day Edition

I absolutely love reading other blog's Day in the Life posts so I thought I'd do one myself! I'll probably do a couple more in the coming months to document what my life is like when I'm not working and maybe the flip side of what it's like when I'm preparing to go to a birth (or better yet, don't know that I'll be going to a birth & am called out unexpectedly totally changing my days plans!). As a birth doula and Midwife Assistant my days rarely have an exact routine. I have a goal of a schedule and I do my best to stick to it, but some days, like this one, I'm just happy we're all surviving!


I started documenting at 2:30 am. I was at a birth and had been for a while. This is when I didn't really want coffee but needed some caffeine. I stole a coke out of the refrigerator at the birth center (don't worry I replaced it!). Then back to work (sorry not much can be shared about work due to privacy protection of the patient).


At 3:00 saying hello to the camera as I cleaned instruments.


It's easy to stay awake when you're absolutely exhausted if you're up and moving around. There's lots to do in cleaning a birth center after birth but people were sleeping and I couldn't do much without making too much noise so back to the caffeine habit that I'll never be able to kick! (3:35 am)


my very favorite coffee mug at the birth center!

Fast forward I'm getting to clean the room and flip it. We always have the room totally cleaned and put back together so that we can have another birth come in at any time. 
It's 7:05 & I'm shifting the laundry from washer to dryer and beginning another load. (It was a long day before at the birth center & though I didn't do them all, I think in that 24 hour period we did along the lines of 15 loads of laundry!!)


As I shift laundry I call John, he needed to leave for work 30 minutes before this, but he fortunately had planned on going in late because he had plans that evening and needed to get off later to avoid random down time (not enough time to drive home from Dallas before going to Fort Worth).
The girls are awake at home and he's feeding them breakfast.

I didn't take many pictures though lots was happening - I got the birth room flipped quickly because I had done so much little (quiet) stuff earlier. I knew that the office staff would be in soon so I left a load of wet laundry in the dryer for them to start when they came in and a load running in the washing machine that someone would flip for me later.  

I took out the trash and locked the birth center up, ran (literally, on foot) next door to Walgreens to buy a coke to replace the one I drank & grab lunchables for the girls for Bible Study that day, I knew there was no way I had time to pack them lunches when I got home. Ran back to the birth center, put the coke in the fridge, relocked the birth center (staff must be stuck in traffic because they would usually be in by now) and headed out, I pulled out of the birth center parking lot at 7:30 am...


... realized I needed gas (UGH!) so took the long way out of town to stop off at the gas station (yes our van uses E-85, I didn't accidentally put the wrong kind in the Mommy-Mobile) (7:40 am)

At 7:59 John texted me to ask if I was lost (Insert some serious side eye here) I replied (using voice to text, not actually texting and driving) that no, he left the van with too little gas and I was dealing with that. I was 5 miles from home at that point. 

I arrived home, kissed John goodbye as he headed out the door and kissed the girls hello. I decided on the drive home that I was going to go ahead with the casserole I needed to make for Bible Study that morning because the idea of getting off the interstate, stopping, getting both girls out of the van, going inside after donuts, loading them again and back on the interstate was more trouble than throwing something in the oven to bake while I showered. 

Turns out that John had used some of the hashbrowns and eggs for the girls breakfast that morning. So, I improvised the too few ingredients into some version of a casserole and chunked it in the oven, ran through the shower and dressed (in yesterdays clothes right out of my on-call bag where I put them when I switched to scrubs). I finished dressing the girls and grabbed up their church diaper bags, took the casserole out of the oven (discovering that it hadn't been set level in the oven so it was quite deep on one end and quite shallow on the other... oh well!)


My very hot casserole in all it's leaning glory on our way to church! It's 9:02 & I was supposed to be at church at 9:00. We arrived at 9:35 and I ran the casserole in before dropping the girls off. 

Drop off was a blast, I was tired (duh) and therefore an air-head. I gave Ada's teacher her bag and talked to her about a lost lunch box and then walked off without giving her Ada. I realized after dropping Cora off in her room and went back to hand the child over. I spoke to one of the childcare teachers, Ms. Lauren, who is also my boss at the birth center about how things went the night before. I had been relieving her after she had worked a long hard, shift so it hadn't even been a birth I was on call for. Ran back out to the van (the church is quite large, so rather than walking from one building to another it's easier to drive - besides I had already hit my steps for the day!) and discovered that I didn't have my cell phone - quite the problem for an on-call birth worker. Went back in and found it in Cora's diaper bag.



I finally made it over to Bible Study at 9:57 - just in time to hear the last half of this week's speaker and to grab the last piece of my casserole!

Big group dismisses and we go to small group, which I managed to stay awake through! We have a freecycle table at our Bible study and everyone brings things they don't need anymore and we pick what we want and whatever is left is donated to various ministries sponsored through our church. I've gotten some amazing things at freecycle and take a lot of my stuff that we've out grown or are finished with up there. Today's find was this keurig! I was so excited, our coffee pot kicked the bucket a couple of months ago but buying a new one just hasn't been a priority.


I got home and made myself a cup of coffee in my new-to-me coffee pot and put the girls down for a nap, and I took a nap with them!

(excuse the giant pile of junk on my sewing table in the background)




Every birth worker has a different self care routine and way of handling our sleep-less and unpredictable lifestyle. I have found that after births, no matter how long they are it is best for me and my family if I just jump right back into our normal schedule as best as I can (assuming it doesn't look like I'm going to be called right back out). I try not to cancel things (though that does sometimes happen, especially if I'm too tired to safely drive) and I don't ever just go to sleep. It messes up my sleep patterns and I miss even more life with my family. My rule of thumb is to never nap longer than 3 hours and I prefer to only do 1.5 hours most of the time. This was a 3 hour nap kind of day! My girls don't normally nap that long, but if I am laying down with them they will. We all slept from 2 until 5!!



Lots of cuddles and hugs after waking up. We really didn't do much at all. They played with some blocks on my bedroom/office floor while I caught up on the insane number of calls/emails/texts I got during that nap.

When dinner time rolled around I was remembering that John wasn't coming home until after bed time, he was going with a friend to see Texas Tech play at TCU. There was no way I felt up to figuring something out for dinner so Tacos it was.



Then during dinner Ada somehow kicked my phone off the table and broke the screen. Fabulous.


On days like this I absolutely bribe my children when need be. They weren't interested in getting in the car, until I showed them M&M's (clearance after christmas & have been hanging out in the freezer at home)

Since we had driven into town I figured I would take the girls by my Dad's house. Since we had napped so late, I wanted the girls to stay up a little past their bed time or trying to put them down would be miserable.  We left his house to go back home at 9:10 pm


The girls fell asleep quickly. I laid in bed with them and worked on my doula business for a while. I had Rizzoli & Isles playing in the background, it's my current show to bing watch but Hulu makes me crazy with it's cruddy connections.


(Ada still sleeps in the fetal position, which I did until I was almost a teenager. I bet she would love it if I still swaddled her! She's also very opposed to pajamas, or pants... and shoes. She would love to run naked!)


After not very long I was good and exhausted. I texted John at 10:30 to see when he would be home then I went to sleep. I vaguely recall him waking me up to tell me he was home.

And that was a day in my life when I've attended an over night birth!

A couple of weeks ago I blogged about how I don't do it all - I accomplished a lot this day, but I didn't do any cleaning, no laundry, I barely picked up the toys that the kids drug out. We didn't do any homeschool lessons or crafts. I didn't do a quiet time. We survived and that was good enough for me! I'm still working on embracing the fact that I can't and won't do it all - and that's okay!

I'm really hoping to document a "normal" day at home with the girls soon! 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Glam Bag Review from a Un-Glam Girl


I have never been much of a "girly girl". I like makeup fine, but I am pretty simple. I don't want to spend a ton of time applying it. I also really hate the idea of spending a ton of money on a a product that I may not end up being a big fan of. When it came time to replace the bulk of my makeup and I just wasn't sure where to start a friend recommended a subscription service! For an affordable $10 a month I get fun new products to try in my Ipsy Bag & I look forward to finding my surprises in the mailbox each month!


I'm reviewing my November Ipsy bag today. Not only can I never seem to blog in a reasonable time frame, some of these products I'm just now really getting a chance to use regularly so I can only give an honest review now. 

Nuxe Nuxellence Detox night cream
This just isn't really my kind of thing. I'm pleased if I can manage to wash my face before bed I'm almost never going to manage to also use a cream. I've used it a couple of times just so I can review it and I can't really tell a difference in my skin tone etc.

I love this!! It works so well and I will definitely be buying a full size bottle of this! I've never used a face primer before, but this has been a game changer for me! I have some large pores on my cheeks (would probably benefit from more regular face washing and care, but alas I don't have time for that) and some old acne scars. It really dramatically reduces their appearance and you really can't feel it on your skin it's so silky and light! 

The Balm - Mad Lash Mascarea
This was another favorite for the month! 

I love the coverage that this mascara provides. I feel like it gives me great volume and great length. I'm a fan of mascara in general and will wear some on days when I don't wear anything else to make me look more "awake" since my blonde eyelashes don't help define my eyes at all. 

Well, this one wasn't a favorite of mine. I'm pretty sure that it's just me and I'm not a good liquid eyeliner girl. I couldn't ever get it on straight and it isn't forgiving at all. 

Adesse New York - Brightening Base Coat
I'm not normally a base coat kind of gal. I don't have time to add another step to painting my nails when I'm barely squeezing time that I don't have to be touching something or wrangling kids so the polish has time to dry. 

I was surprised by this one though. It drys very quickly and it really does brighten the nail. I've worn it as a quick stand alone polish a couple of times when I've been in a hurry. It looks nice like that, but it chips easily so not really a long-term solution. Over all, I'm pleased with it though I don't think I would go out and buy my own.

If you're interested in subscribing to Ipsy I would love it if you used my referral link!


This post contains affiliate links and if you make a purchase from one of the links I may receive a small commission. Thank you for helping me support our family!



Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Keeping all the balls in the air

Yesterday as I was leaving my twice monthly Bible Study a new friend stopped me and asked how I "do it". How do I manage running my own company, working full time, being a mom and keeping a house. At first I was flattered, to think that my reoccurring hot mess act has anyone thinking I am doing much more than keeping my head above water. It was probably the illusion that I had make up on for once, but in reality that was the make up I had put on for a party the night before. ;)

A photo from November, because clearly not on the ball with backing my pictures up!


I was quick to tell her that "I don't". Plain and simple, I don't do it all. If I'm on top of the behind the scenes stuff for work, my house is in ruins around me. If I'm managing my housework, I am behind on managing SEO and networking for my business. I constantly struggle with 'mom guilt' about whether I'm spending enough time and individual attention for the girls. Let's not even talk about this little piece of neglect in my life... blogging just doesn't seem to happen, ever, even though it's something I love doing! Oh and exercising... that's a laughable concept at this point. (and the list of things that I would love to have time for but just don't, is not limited to these two things by any means!)

At the birth center after doing a couple of all night births - it was Thanksgiving and I proceeded to sleep through the rest of the day. I'm telling you, hot mess!

I would love to tell you how I manage what I do, but honestly I'm still figuring so much of it out. I've started being more intentional with a schedule for the family. A specific get-up time which lends the girls to actually take a nap at a specific time (crazy right?!?) and bed time has been easier. I've also started cutting back and being more realistic about what my work to-do list looks like. Instead of having daily tasks, I have weekly tasks to get through.  A schedule with the girls has helped a lot too. We're still fine tuning it, but for the first time in months we're managing to do our preschool activities and circle time in the mornings before lunch & naps. 


I have also been using the She Reads Truth app & a Bible app to spend some time in the Word each day. I have always had a big hang up with the idea of reading the Bible on my phone. I felt like I aught to be able to make time to sit down and open my physical Bible. Let's get real, that was happening so very rarely. at least I'm actually reading this way! It really helps to fill my cup so I'm not so empty trying to pour into my first and most important ministry, my family. 


A photo posted by Rebekah (@bekah.jane) on


So, if you see someone you think is doing it all - chances are she's just like you, doing her best to tread water.

By the way -  I have a new Facebook page for my blog, it's pretty much crickets over there, but eventually, maybe it won't be. You can check it out here -

www.facebook.com/ChroniclesFromThePeanutGallery


Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Show & Tell Tuesday: Want, Need, Wear, Read

Happy Tuesday! 
It is a pretty drizzly fall day here. I'm cuddled up on the couch with a cold, praying that I'm not called to any births anytime soon (ha, yeah right...) and the kids are watching Daniel Tiger on repeat. 

How's your Tuesday? 

I'm linking up with Andrea for Show & Tell Tuesday today!
We usually do the Want, Need, Wear, Read for all of our Christmas gifts. This year John and I agreed to just do one gift to each other and we're still doing Want/Need/Wear/Read for the girls (with the addition of a pair of pajamas, a DVD in the stocking, stocking stuffers, and a big gift to open on Christmas Eve {We're currently on the fence about Santa, but usually that would be the Santa gift})


Want
This year I am going simple on the Want, and since it's a smaller item, I've allowed myself two want items. I have recently jumped on the Washi Tape bandwagon. I've seen it for years on Pinterest but I hadn't realized that it's for more than just being pretty. I don't have time to these big crazy calendar spreads - but it's so nice to stick a couple of pieces of washi tape on there & be able to see the difference in events and notes. And on that same note, I need to replace my colored pens for my calendar (yes, it's all color coded). My sweet daughters have run off will all of the colors and either broken them or lost them.


Need
A Fit Bit! I actually would prefer an Apple Watch, but I'm too cheap/lazy to switch to an Apple phone from my beloved Android. I'm also pretty hard on watches, so I'm afraid I'll also break the Apple Watch screen in nothing flat. 

Now, you're thinking you need a fit bit?? And the answer is yes, of course there are the obvious health benefits. But actually those are just icing on the cake for me. I need something that vibrates on my wrist when I get a call so I can stop obsessively checking my phone when I'm with my kids, at church etc while I'm on call. 
This is the one I'm considering. Do you have any tips or recommendations? 

Wear
I am on the search for the perfect pair of Ankle Boots. I haven't found what I want yet (this is what I'm requesting in our family gift exchange) so if you have any suggestions please send them my way!
My criteria: leather (I'll just ruin suede), Very little to no heel (if it does have a heel, I'd prefer a wedge), comfortable, and around $50.

If I can't turn up the perfect pair in time for Christmas, I'll just revert to my stand-by obsession in the clothing department and request Lu La Roe! Guys, I'm not fashionable. It's just not where I spend my interest/time/money but I love LLR. It's so easy and I've been so pleased with everything I have. I get lots of complements, it has me wearing patterns and prints instead of my go-to almost all black wardrobe. I just love it! 


Read



I love everything I have made from Shay's blog & got my sister-in-love her bundt cake book which she loves. I prefer having a cook book in front of me, it's just easier to make notes etc so having her recipes in print form would be perfect!

What is on your Christmas Wish List for this year? 

Monday, November 21, 2016

Life Lately

This past week has been so much slower than the past couple, but it's also been jam packed with some crazy! 

Tuesday I had my MOMs Bible Study at church. I absolutely love getting together and fellowshipping with these wonderful women! After study, the girls and I met John for Taco Tuesday (Love me some tacos!!) and grocery shopping (necessary evil... I'm so glad I have a husband that wants to go grocery shopping with me!)


Wednesday was a "normal" day around here of work, I had a networking coffee date with a new local birth doula. It's been so very nice having John work from home, he can watch the kids while he works or log out and take a "lunch break" if he needs to so I can go do some of my out-of-house work when necessary.  Fast forward to Thursday and the crazy train started!

Josh is still in town but he was going fishing with a friend so I wasn't rushing out of the house to go spend time with him over at my Dad's house. Around 4 my Dad calls, I assume to tell me he's finished working and what am I doing. Wrong, he's had a car accident and needs me to come up to the highschool. I was in sweat pants, so I threw on something a little more reasonable grabbed up John and the girls and away we went! He's okay, but his car is totaled and he's really sore. He was driving a little Toyota Matrix and a big 4 door truck ran a red light (in a school zone...) and slammed into him. We're so very grateful that it was not worse than it is! 



While I was standing in the ambulance getting a report from the paramedic about how he's doing my "on call" ring tone started playing repeatedly. I checked the text quickly and sure enough I had a client in labor! I cancelled the nights plans and stayed at Dad's caring for him. 

Friday I spent the day waiting on the "come join me" call to go help my laboring client. I left at about 4 that afternoon and finished the birth about 5 the next day. My 2nd longest birth support yet! One of the hardest things about being a doula is that when it's all finished I go home and still have real life to face. I came home and snuggled my girls who were beyond happy that mommy was home! We loaded up and went to dinner (so happy to not be cooking after being awake for 35 some odd hours!!)



Sunday was a typical day, church, lunch with the family and lots of cuddles with my girls that were afraid I'd be walking out the door any minute (which is totally possible since I was still on call for another client and the birth center!). 




What's life been like lately for you? 

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Guys Behind the Blog // November

I'm linking up with these lovely ladies for one of my favorite series ever, Guys Behind the Blog! You can find a link to join in too here


1 // What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish? What is your least favorite?
Pecan pie (which he pronounced as "pee-can pie" LOL) or green bean casserole, as long as there aren't mushrooms! (he's allergic) Canned cranberry sauce, or fruit cake!
2 // What is a Thanksgiving tradition you liked growing up that you want to continue with your family? For example: Do you eat super early around 3pm or regular dinner time around 6pm? Do you watch football? Do you all go to a particular family member's house? Do you nap after the big meal?
We always eat, then watch football and afterwards start gearing up to decorate for Christmas! 

3 // What are your thoughts on Black Friday shopping? Yay or nay?
Absolutely "nay". Online shopping is okay I guess. I really dislike the crowds and getting up early from a tryptophan induced coma ;) 

4 // If you had it your way, would you set up your holiday decorations (Christmas tree, Hanukkah menorah, etc.) before or after Thanksgiving?
After, because before is obnoxious! My wife wants to put up a "thanksgiving tree", basically a Christmas Tree with fall stuff on it. I'm not so sure about that either.

5 // What are you most thankful for this year?
Good health for our family. For job stability, and for Rebekah's business doing well.  My good looks... haha don't put that down! (I didn't listen... shhh!)

Monday, November 14, 2016

Life Lately

This past week has been a fun and memorable week! On Tuesday morning John woke up to his alarm and saw a text from his boss that the office had flooded and that he should work from home. Turns out that flooded puts his office building mildly so he worked from home for the rest of the week and will probably be working from home the better part of the month! 

Of course Tuesday was also a historic day in America! 
I dressed the girls in their patriotic gear, because regardless of the election outcome, we are still Americans! Ada is wearing Cora's shirt from Joshua's home coming last year. I never could get her to sit still enough to where you can read it in a picture, but it says "My uncle is my Hero. Proud niece of a U.S. Marine"



It also took dum dum suckers to bribe them to sit for the picture. 
The quilt that they're sitting on has scriptures written on it and was presented to my younger brother after he joined the Marines by our home church. There are sweet ladies involved in the quilt ministry and they pray over the men and women they are preparing the quilts for as they sew. Such a neat ministry. 

That evening I went to a leadership planning meeting for our local Birth Network and then went to my Dad's house to join in on the family's election watch. We had expected results to come in quicker & it be a landslide one way or another. After it got so late waiting on a definitive answer as to who won (and both girls having fallen asleep) we decided that we were just going to crash at my Dad's house that night. 

Wednesday morning we got up so early and loaded the girls still in their diapers (the way they slept) and headed to Dallas for Cora's check up with her Rhumatologist at Scottish Rite Hospital.



Cora's knee doesn't have active inflammation right now, and none of her other joints are showing active inflammation (which is the extreme swelling you see with JRA) but the knee still cannot fully extend. She's also been having some trouble with stiffness and pain when the weather changes or we have a storm (Monday was rough for her, I cancelled all of our outings so she could just stay inside and rest) so the doctors are recommending that she go back onto a therapeutic dosage (read: insanely large doses for her little body) of an anti inflammatory drug. She responded very well to this last time, so we are praying that it is effective (along with some therapy & exercises) and that her body continues to tolerate the meds well.


After the appointment we stopped by John's office that isn't far from the hospital so he could clear his desk & pick up his dual monitors to make working from home easier. Then, because the day hadn't been exciting enough, we headed to Fort Worth for Cora's check up with her Ophthalmologist. That check up went perfectly! The JRA hasn't affected her eyes yet & she's good to wait another 3 months before being seen again. 



John went on home and worked until well in the evening while I kept the girls out of his hair at my Dad's house and prepared for my brothers arrival the next day!

Thursday my brother Jacob drove in from Tyler to join us to pick up Joshua from the airport! It ended up being a crazy morning. The website showed that Josh's flight was delayed so we stopped and had breakfast, basically wasted time & as we were finally leaving Denton Josh texted to tell us he was at baggage claim and where were we? I realized it was silly for me to drive all that way just to pay to drive through the airport so Ada & I ran some errands while Dad, Jacob & Cora got Josh from the airport and then I joined them with Robert for lunch.


A photo posted by Rebekah (@bekah.jane) on


Friday was a full day of errands, a quick play date and more errands - mostly trying to stay out of the house while John's working at home so he can actually work.

Saturday I co-hosted a baby shower for some sweet ladies I know from Mom's Bible Study at church with Angela and Alyssa. I'll share more pictures in a separate post. It came together so well & we had a lot of fun! 


A photo posted by Rebekah (@bekah.jane) on
The rest of the day was spent with family, Jacob and Stephanie were in town. It's so rare to have everyone under the same roof these days, we soak up the time when it happens! 

Yesterday was a typical day, church (we managed to make it to the early service and go to Bible Study after for the 2nd week in a row! Celebrate the little things!) lunch after services at my Dad's house and then I went to a friends Lu La Roe pop up party & bought this Nicole!! 

I love LLR clothes so much! I am not a person that likes to clothes shop, at all! I also don't like spending money, at all. But, I really love LLR and the way the clothes fit and when it comes down the price per wear, I'm not dying over the cost! I feel like that's likely going to get it's own post too! 



I'm looking forward to another full week with friends and family and I can't believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner!! I started meal planning for the various holiday events today. It will be here before we know it!

How was your weekend?