Friday, September 25, 2009

Childhood Memories

There are so many pleasant memories I have as a child and it's funny how the things my parents made a big fuss over because they wanted me to remember it is not something I remember it was all the little things they did that made me feel so special. I remember ......

Getting to stay up late sometimes and eat lobster egg rolls with my mon (I didn't like them but I pretended too just so I could stay up late and hang out with her.

Eating pancakes that my dad made every Christmas morning with special syrup made from Koolaide Mix and sugar heated up on the stove

Little notes my mom use to put in my lunch box or when she cut my sandwich out like a heart

Taking nature walks at the park with the whole family

Its funny how as a parent you try so hard to make birthdays and holidays so special but those are not the days I remembered it was the the little things. So as a parent of 4 young ones I try to do fun special things that maybe my kids will remember and make them smile into adulthood like some of my memories do for me.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Fall is Here!

Well it's been a while I had my newest baby he was born on July 24th weighing 10.2 lbs. It was an Amazing drug free birth in the shower with my midwife.

So today is the first day of fall to celebrate I took a walk with the kids to look for leaves and signs of fall. We collected all sorts of leaves and traced them onto coloerd paper and hung them in our school room after we decrated them with glitter.

Monday, June 8, 2009

So much to do, so little time....

So the title says it all I'm just soooooooo overwhelmed latley I have so many things to get done before the baby gets here but just no time
- wash baby cloths
-buy a dresser to put them in
-wash and hang Amby Bed
- paint DS's room and living room
- finish up some schooling with oldest
-figure out what curriculuim I want to use next year
- buy a ton of baby odds and ends at the store... changing pad, changing pad covers,gripe water, probiotics, post partum pads,
- cook and plan some freezer meals for when baby arrives

the list goes on
But I did get a lot done today I got the kids signed up for a summer reading club, went to the library, stopped by the lab to give a urine sample, took oldest to gym class, took the middle child swimming, made dinner, picked up house and now my lower back hurts so bad I can't hardly move or clean up the dinner dishes


Friday, June 5, 2009

Singing in the Rain

This pic was actually taken last month in May when all we had was rain. The kids were bored and sick of being inside and we can't grow grass to save our lives in the backyard so it's been a mud pit so I sent them out to play and dance in the rain in the front yard while me and the 1 yr old watched in the window. They did find the ONE puddle in our drive and had a blast stomping and splashing in it

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Natural antivirals

If the swine flue does get bad here is a great article on natural antivirals that work specifically on swine flu

I was surprised to find out that certain Holistic drugs that I would usually take during a sickness will make it WORSE like Echinacea

here is part of the article incase the link fails to work

"Research suggests certain natural foods may be as effective against virus H5N1 as commercial antivirals.

(PRWEB) May 10, 2006 -- A Biology teacher from Australia, named Stephen Jones, has done extensive research into the H5N1 virus and compiled a list of natural foods that are effective against it and listed others that are detrimental.

The list may come as a surprise to many people since foods such as spirulina and echinacea are listed as detrimental. This strange occurrence is largely due to the fact that the virus is immune to 2 cytokines that the body produces (TNF-a and IL-6). Cytokines are compounds produced by the body’s immune system that attack and remove foreign bodies. The problem is that when a foreign body is immune to certain cytokines, the body sees that its immune response is not working and tries even harder, which can lead to what is called a cytokine storm, where the body becomes flooded with these compounds and they eventually destroy the body itself. Foods such as Echinacea actually stimulate the production of these specific cytokines; hence consuming it is not a good idea if one suspects they may have the virus.

During the 1918 Spanish Flu many healthy young people died from cytokine storms due to their immune systems overreacting. Consuming foods which suppress the production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6 and enhance the production of the ones that actually are effective against the virus will aid the patient greatly.

Other foods that create mucous in the respiratory tract, such as bananas, are also listed as detrimental due to the fact that the predominant breeding ground of the virus is the respiratory tract and another way in which a patient may suffer is due to the body's over production of mucous in this area.

Folk Medicines and Herbs to use and avoid with Bird Flu

Below is a list of foods that are said to contain substances that are natural antivirals, immune boosters or they decrease cytokines TNF-a and IL-6.

Alternative medications that are most likely to help us during a severe pandemic:

Garlic (allicin) - Very effective antiviral. Best if fresh (raw) and crushed. Must be consumed within 1 hour of crushing. Dosage is initially 2 to 3 cloves per day but later reduce until no body odour occurs. No toxic effects noted. (Pubmed PMID 9049657)

Vitamin C - Boosts the immune system and is an antiviral by blocking the enzyme neuraminadase. Viruses need neuraminadase to reproduce. There are anecdotal stories of people taking large amounts of Vitamin C (children ½) surviving the Spanish Flu. Research shows that it may reduce the production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6. A study on 470 people involved giving the test group 1000 mg hourly for 6 hours and then 1000 mg 3 times daily after reporting flu symptoms. Symptoms decreased by 85%. (Pubmed PMID 10543583, 634178, 16169205, 12876306)

Green Tea (possible Tamiflu/Relenza alternative)- Very effective antiviral. Also decreases the production of the cytokine (catechins) TNF-a. Inhibits neuraminidase. May have antiviral activity that is equal to other antivirals such as Tamiflu. (Pubmed PMID 16137775)

St Johns Wort (Hypericum) - Very effective antiviral. Also decreases the production of the cytokine IL-6. Hypericum is an extract from St John’s Wort. There have been some very successful field trials in commercial flocks infected with H5N1 in Vietnam. (Pubmed PMID 7857513, 11518071, 11362353, 7857513, 11518071)

Vitamin E - Immune booster. Also decreases the production of the cytokine TNF-a. (Pubmed PMID 155882360, 10929076) Experiments involved using mice. Very suitable for immune compromised people, especially the elderly. Effects enhanced when taken with Vitamin C.

Apple Juice - Antiviral. Fresh apple juice including the pulp and skin has greater antiviral activity than heated commercial apple juice. More research is needed. Effectiveness on H5N1 is unknown. (Pubmed PMID 32832, 12452634)

Resveratrol - Antiviral. In addition to inhibiting neuraminidase, Resveratrol also sends a message to cells to stop manufacturing viruses. This is a proven antiviral found naturally in red wine, peanuts, mulberries, Japanese Knotwood root (richest source), raisins and red grapes. Resveratrol supplements are relatively inexpensive, are more stable than wine and is available in liquid form for absorption in the mouth. No toxic effects noted. (Pubmed PMID 1583880, 12817628, 15985724)

Scuttellaria (Skullcap) - Antiviral. A herb used as a tea. It has no side effects and is also a mild tranquilliser. Research suggests neuraminidase, which is a substance needed by the H5N1 virus to reproduce, may be inhibited.

Cranberry Juice - Early research shows that it may be an antiviral, making viruses less able to invade or multiply. Effectiveness on H5N1 is unknown. (Pubmed PMID15781126)

Cat’s Claw (Uncaria tomentosa) - Decreases the production of the cytokine TNF-a. Also boosts immune system. The number of white blood cells was significantly increased during treatment. No toxicity was noted. ( Active constituents can be found in the leaves, bark, vine, and roots. Water extraction from bark used. Children and pregnant women are to avoid. Has a potentially damaging effect on the DNA of proliferating cells. (cancers, foetuses, growing children)

Curcumin (Tumeric Spice) - Decreases the production of the cytokine TNF-a. This is the yellow compound in turmeric spice. Research shows that this may be very good for preventing a cytokine storm although this is not proven. Must be taken with food or gastritis or peptic ulcers may occur. Pregnant women and feeding mothers should avoid this. The medicinal properties of curcurnin cannot be utilised when used alone due to rapid metabolism in the liver and intestinal wall. When combined with Piperine found in black pepper the absorption is increased with no adverse effects. Obtainable from health stores in tablets, liquid, capsules already combined with piperine. Dosage is 500mg to 4000mg daily.

Astragalus root (Astragali Radix) - Boosts immune system. (Pubmed PMID15588652)

Tea tree Steam Inhalation - Reduces the cytokine TNF-a. Add 2 drops of tea tree oil in a bowl of steaming water. Cover head with a towel and inhale for 5 to 10 minutes. Relieves congestion and fights infection. Its effectiveness is unknown. (Pubmed PMID 11131302)

The following substances may be best to avoid during a H5N1 pandemic

Elderberry juice (Sambucal) - AVOID - Increases production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6. This substance is very effective against the common flu but may not be desirable for the H5N1 virus. Increases in these cytokines may trigger a lethal cytokine storm. (Isr Med Journal2002 Nov;4:944-6)

Micro Algae (Chlorella and Spirulina) - AVOID - Increases production of cytokine TNF-a. (Pubmed PMID 11731916)

Honey - AVOID - Increases production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6. (Pubmed PMID12824009)

Chocolate - AVOID - Increases production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6. (Pubmed PMID 12885154, PMID 10917928)

Echinacea - AVOID - Increases production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6. Although it is often used for normal flu, research shows that it may increase the chance of cytokine storms for H5N1. (Pubmed PMID 15556647, 9568541)

Kimchi - AVOID - Increases production of cytokines TNF-a and IL-6. (Pubmed PMID15630182)

Dairy products & Bananas - AVOID - These foods increase mucous production."

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Swine Flu is showing a free movie for kids to understand the swine flu you can click on it above. We LOVE brain pop my son is always asking to watch videos, if you like this movie check out thier website. I'm glad we found out about it on one of our Home School boards.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Cereal box house

So I got this idea from my Daughters EARLY INTERVENTION therapist, she said that they had all the kids bring a cearl box into the daycare center and they built a cereal fort. I never saw it since we did home therapy but thought it was cool so I started saving and had my wonderful MIL save boxes as well, she also had some co workers donate boxes to us too! Thank you to all who help save boxes!It's not what I envisioned but here it is! It was actually very hard to make do to all the different size boxes we had but it is what it is. Don't mind the priority tape and 3 priority boxes (blush).

We are saving boxes again to build a bigger better house my husband is convinced he can make a 2 story castle that the kids can actually walk in so we will see I'll post pics if we ever get enough boxes. We have already been saving for 6 months and don't have nearly enough.

Spring is here!

It was very warm this week and the kids and I( spent a lot of time outside instead of doing school work. School works is for the bad weather days! Anyway we were excited to see Springtime's first flowers appear. We found beautiful yellow Daffodils growing in our neighbors yard after I threw a football over the fence on accident, whoops! So I let the kids pick a few (the house is vacant so I didn't think anyone would mind)Its a shame really it looks like it was once a beautiful flower garden too! There is a busted up bird bath, empty bird feeders and beautiful terraced stone workings to lay out flowers. Maybe it will be restored someday by new renters, or owners. Anyway back to the beautiful Spring day my son also found one purple flower, I'm not sure what it is but we picked that as well. Then we went in the house and put out beautiful Spring flowers in a vase with some water. I decided it would be a perfect time for the kids to paint some still life pictures of them so I can add some sunshine to our Homeschool room. My 2 yr old did really well when I explained how to paint them, I did help her though a little. I LOVE them and the look sooooooooo pretty on my walls.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Leprechaun traps

Here are the Leprechaun traps we made,the kids had a blast making them we set them up near the back door.

The one on the left was an old peanut container with yellow tissue paper over the top so the leprechaun would fall in when he tried to reach the rainbow.

The one on the right was a shoe box that had a hole in it with tissue paper covering it in hopes that he would fall in.

We found the traps knocked over in the morning with a few dollars scattered about but we were unable to catch a tricky lil' leprechaun.

Better luck next year!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Bird Craft

The 2 yr old starting her birds..... hers are all pink.My 8 yr olds are the multi color ones with the crazy eyes lol! Gotta love creativity

So here are the birds that we made the other day- I think they are soooooooo cute. Since then we have made nest for them, and eggs for thier nest and hung them on the wall.

Monday, February 23, 2009

A day in the life of....

I woke up at 7 am to a happy smiling baby . We played on the bed for 20 min then we got up. I changed him and got his breakfast ready as well as set out breakfast for my 2 other sleeping children. I put the baby in the living room where Papa bird is and set him with his cereal and sippy cup. Then I went back to take a nap.

8:30 all the kids and Papa bird coming running in to the bedroom and jump on the bed to wake me up. I climb out of bed after playing with them all for a bit then get dressed, dress baby, dress 2 yr old and send 8 year old to do his spelling worksheet.

9:00 I put baby down for his morning nap, start some laundry, turn on computer to look up the new recipe I’m making today its sesame chicken in the crockpot my 2 yr old helps me mix and measure everything all the while tasting everything J my 8 yr old is now practicing his math, vocab and spelling on this is an awesome site that even adults can play to help increase skills and earn food for the hungry. My 8 yr old plays everyday and earns 1000-2000 grains of rice.

9:30 The 2 yr old is drawing on the board and I sit down at the table with 8 yr old to do his Language lesson. Snack time Snikerdoodles and OJ

10;00 We made a bird craft I cut out bird shapes out of cardboard then the kids glued feathers legs and eyes on them, they had lots of fun making them this is bird week for us as we are gearing up for our zoo class on birds this Thursday. Baby woke up around 10:30

11:00 we ate lunch- pizza applesauce and milk.

11:30 I sent the 2 older kids outside to play while the baby and I fold laundry and put the diapers in the dryer. Crock pot smell good. Made several emails about this Thursdays field trip to the zoo I’m hosting. …….I just need to say I HATE when people sign up then do not show or come late and interrupt the class that’s a huge pet peeve of mine, its just so very rude! Also got a few min top read and post on my fav boards

12;00 PM played with the younger kids while the older one is still outside playing in the snow

1:00 put the younger 2 in bed for a nap, did a load of laundry, talked about art with older child then gave him his math and science, lesson walked on the treadmill for 10 min. then relaxed at my computer and played Worlds of Warcraft;jsessionid=D44CBDAEC58370DF8B823270330C13A6.app25_02 ( yes I am a gaming geek, so is my husband, dad and son- we all play together hee hee)

At 3:00 which is when the little ones get up from their nap and I watch Gudingl light while I folded and put away laundry. The kids have free time to do whatever or we all play together.

5:15 Dinner time Papa Bird Comes home and we eat today we tried the new recipe sesame chicken with rice and carrots I thought it was good but the kids weren’t thrilled after diner it was bath time.Then I cleaned up the kitchen , washed dishes, picked up toys and got he little ones ready for bed.

6;30 baby goes to bed 7;00 2 yr old goes to bed and 8;30 8 yr old goes to bed now I’m off to fix myself a bowl of Spumani Ice cream and play World of Warcraft for a bit before I watch Kyle XY at 9pm then head to bed

Hope you enjoyed reading my day!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Bouquet of LOVE

So for Valentines day I decided to have the kids make something for their Grandma different from the normal valentines so we cut out hearts and glued them on Skewer sticks and then put them in an old olive oil jar we had in the cupboard ( I knew I would use the jar for something) the kids had a lot of fun making them and Grandma LOVED her bouquet of love!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Medicalization of Childbirth

I wrote this paper ( not perfect I know) about 5 years ago for a class in College I thought others may want to read it. I found it interesting to read now that I am pregnant again. My format got a little screwy when I copied and pasted it but here it is....

Medicalization of Childbirth
For hundreds of years woman delivered their babies at home with the use of a midwife another woman who has experienced childbirth in the past: sisters, mothers, or grandmothers would be there to assist the woman going through the childbirth process. In the early 1900’s this all changed when our knowledge of medicine increased. More woman began going to hospitals to deliver their babies because they were swayed by there doctors that the hospital would be safer place to have their children .Is it really safer to deliver in a hospital or is it the greed of doctors that pressured woman into going to the hospital?
When most people think of hospitals, we think of a white and steel sterile environments that inhibit the growth of bacteria. On the contrary, hospitals have many forms of bacteria that could be deadly to persons with lowered immune systems. In fact, hospital-acquired infections are becoming more difficult to combat (Hospital Topics 1). So the sterile environment that we were think we are giving birth in does not exist, we are just meant to believe that hospitals are safer cleaner places so woman would want to have their babies in the cleanest environment possible. I
am not arguing that there would not be bacteria in your home if you were to do a home birth but, there is probably less harmful bacteria than in a hospital that if full of sick people. Infants have low immune systems when they are born so to scare woman into thinking that the most sterile place to give birth is a hospital seems beneficial to the doctors and the hospital by creating life long patients or should I say life long customers which is what the medical community seems to want. Most everything in life comes down to money why should childbirth seem any different.
Before the 1900 Midwives were the ones who assisted births and cared for woman when going through the childbirth process. It was not until the after the 1900’s that we noticed a shift to male doctors. In 1858 physicians, surgeons, and apothecaries formed a group called ‘doctors’ (Cahill 5). This change brought on the shift from midwives to doctors. During the 20th century there was a great change from midwives to doctors. Since medical doctors could perform surgeries and give anesthesia, this caused many women to choose doctors instead of midwives. Woman at this time knew that childbirth was painful and doctors were saying that if you gave birth in a hospital they could help control the pain by administering drugs. Doctors also use fear tactics on woman by saying that male doctors had standardized medical training, which midwives did not. Doctors then stated that if something were to go wrong what better place to be in than hospitals where there was the newest technology to help the problem.
The use of forceps was introduced around this time to help ease the
baby out of the birth canal but unfortunately, this caused more deaths than helped because doctors did not have proper training on the use of forceps. The use of forceps or failed induction usually required a caesarean section that midwives could not perform (Cahill 8) Donnison’s 1977 argument that the medical men deliberately set out to frighten woman into believing that male attendance was necessary by exaggerating that the dangers of childbirth (Cahill 7). The brainwashing that male doctors caused resulted in many women turning away from midwives to male doctors in a hospital setting to give birth to their children. Historical analysis reveals that the professionalization of medicine necessarily constructed male medical knowledge as scientific and therefore superior to female intuitiveness and experience (Cahill 9).
Since the medicalization of childbirth, it seems the caesarean rate has gone up and that most woman seems to deliver during the week not on the weekends making it more convenient for the doctor (Matcha 181). What does not make sense to me is that many of these changes including the medicalization of childbirth were to make the doctors more money. Well if I am the one paying the doctor why does it seem like we are getting less attention but paying more. Doctors are not usually not there
your entire delivery but midwives are but they are paid less. It does not make much sense that the midwives work more but are paid less. This all
goes back to the fear that Cahill stated earlier through this medicalization process woman have been pressured by fear into giving birth at a hospital with a doctor not a midwife.Childbirth is and always has been a natural process so why did we feel the need to intervene. I believe that early doctors had a ‘GOD’ complex and went a little to far when technology was at its peek. We have made some great medical discoveries but childbirth itself was not a discovery nor was pregnancy. Childbirth has been going on for hundreds of years without the intervention of medicine and since we as a species are here today proves that we survived and that we knew what we were doing back then. It is true that many women have died during childbirth before medicalization, but have doctors taken the medicalization of childbirth to far. Is there a happy medium that someday doctors will be able to find between natural childbirth with a midwife or medicalizaed childbirth with a doctor. I believe we are well on our way in finding that medium but it is going to take a lot of time.
Currently midwives seem to be more accepted by society and are backed by doctors incase there may be a need for caesarean sections but are modern midwives becoming more medicalized or are doctor becoming more demedicalized, it is hard to say. In 1996 a group of six midwives and six gynecologists came together from around the world and met at the WHO headquarters to discuss their differences and weigh the evidence (Hoope-Bender 2). The conclusions made were that they both wanted the same out come, the delivery of a child in the safest way. The problem is that they have different views on what is the best and safest way to bring a child into the world. It is hard to say which is method is better but we can try to figure out which method safer. During this meeting, they decided that a midwife is the best healthcare worker to take care of a normal pregnancy in the most cost effective way (Hoope-Bender2). This statement leads us to believe that doctors would be the best choice if money was not an option and if you had a complicated or high-risk pregnancy. This coming together between doctors and midwives is a great milestone for the midwives since during the early 20th century most doctors did not accept them. This recent acceptance shows great promise for the healthcare of pregnant women. Much still needs to be learned about the differences between midwives and doctors but it does not help midwives when the American Medical Association makes claims against midwives. This shows us that some parts of the world doctors and midwives are coming together but in other parts like Australia they are still fighting against each other in this ongoing feud of who is better at taking care of a women going through childbirth (Fahy and Pesce).In the book Baby Catcher by Peggy Vincent, a midwife who recalls a time in the 1960’s when she was on rotation in the obstetrics ward as a student nurse. She watched and helped a woman go through labor that would not listen to the doctors and refused to lie down during her labor. Peggy kept telling this woman that she was going to get her in trouble if she did not lie down. The woman in labor said to Peggy that she had given birth to two babies at home with the help of her granny and never again would she give birth in a hospital. Peggy learned then that the medical profession would not let this woman deliver her child they way she felt was right by instincts even though she had done it twice prior. At the end of the story she ended up drugged against her will after the baby had come out because the doctors thought she needed it. (Vincent 17-20). This was a very sad story and a good example of how the medical profession has led woman away from using her intuition on what is right when delivering her child. The current medical profession seems to have the idea that they know what is best for woman because they have a degree that says so. I do not agree with this theory and think that some serious changes need to be made in the medical community, but I fear this will never happen due to malpractice lawsuit that patients could throw on doctors by saying that they were in so much pain they did not know what they were saying
Midwives have been given a bad rap over the years but I believe that they are just as capable of caring for a pregnant woman than a doctor. Midwives spend more time listening to what the woman wants and what she feels is right, not what medical standards view as right. Childbirth is a natural process and woman need to listen to their own intuition and have someone who supports them through this process. We do not hire doctors to deliver the babies of dogs they know how to do it through instincts, just as Homo sapiens do and have done for many hundreds of years why should things change because our technology has.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Winter's Popsicles

East side of my street

12 inches of snow

So over the last 2 days we have recieved 12 inches of snow, it's so pretty. Last night we went out and played in it. There is nothing like playing in the snow in the dark. The baby thought laying in the driveway and licking the snow was a good time while the 2 yr old and the 8 yr old loved throwing snow at Daddy. It was a blast and it was pretty warm out too! Here are a few pics of the snow coverd trees today.