Thursday, March 24, 2011

Midwives/Doulas seminar at ISU March 29th

See article here or read below.  If anyone is interested in attending with me, let me know.  There are a couple of us planning to go out to lunch around 11:30 and then head to the seminar at 1.

Midwives and doulas will be the subject of the McDowell Stafford Lectureship Series in Child and Family Health presented by Mennonite College of Nursing at Illinois State University on Tuesday, March 29.

Birthing Options in the 21st Century – Midwives and Doulas will be the topic of a presentation by certified doula, Janet Tolley, and certified nurse midwives, Jolene Hamann and Laura Lawson, beginning at 1 p.m. in the Bone Student Center Old Main Room. This presentation will examine the labor process when facilitated by a doula and/or midwife, and recognize alternative birthing options available and the impact this can have on the nurse’s role in labor.

At 7 p.m., What Do Doulas and Midwives Bring to the Birthing Experience will be presented by Tolley, Hamann, Lawson and Dionne Otto in the Bone Student Center, Old Main Room. Participants will learn about various birthing options available, especially involving certified doulas and certified nurse midwives and their scope of practice in labor and delivery. A reception will follow this lecture.

Both programs are free, however advance registration is requested due to limited space. For more information or to register contact Amy Irving at (309) 438-7418, or visit

Tolley is a registered nurse certified as a labor and postpartum doula through the Doulas of North America (DONA). She is also an International Board Certified lactation counselor. She is the Lactation and Doula Programs facilitator at the Birth Center at St. John's Hospital in Springfield, and is a labor and postpartum doula for Gentle Touch Doulas.

Hamann began her nursing career in the Air Force. After working as an RN in labor and delivery at Methodist Medical Center in Peoria and becoming a certified doula, Hamann began the Midwifery and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner program at University of Illinois at Chicago. She went on to practice at Broome OB/GYN, a private practice in Binghamton, N. Y. In 2009 Hamann returned to Bloomington–Normal, joining Obstetrics and Gynecology II, Ltd, delivering at Advocate Bromenn Medical Center and St. Joseph’s Medical Center.

Lawson received her M.S.N. from the University of Illinois-Chicago, specializing in midwifery and women’s health. She is a Certified Nurse Midwife and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner with Dr. Nona Fulk in Normal. She is a member of American Certified Nurse Midwife Organization and Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses.

Otto received a bachelor’s degree in child development and family relationships from Illinois State University. She began exploring options for helping women during the childbearing years and went to a DONA-approved training. She is also a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator, Certified Lactation Consultant, and Certified Happiest Baby on the Block Educator. She co-operates Wise Women Birth Services in McLean County, which provides doula services to women who are pregnant through the postpartum period. She also offers education on lactation and parenting to women in the early childbearing years.

These events are funded in part by grants from the Alice and Fannie Fell Trust and the Marion McDowell Stafford Charitable Trust Grant Program.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Reverse your Thinking

Our pastor showed this neat video clip on Sunday at our church.  Click on the link and follow along reading the words...

Reverse your thinking

Organizing Tips

The following post is what I spoke on last week at Apples of Golds.  I added some additional info also.  Most of these tips have been on the tip sheet at one time or another but here I am elaborating.

Organizing Tips

When I was asked to share tips on organizing a month ago, I began looking around my house at all the things I organize.  After I awhile, I began thinking that this topic could be dangerous for me.  These women are going to think I'm crazy and I may become hospitalized because of it!  I am a little obsessive about organization!  There are a few tips I decided to leave off due to this reasoning and will be keeping those to myself :)

I think the key to being organized is being as clutter free as possible. I like to leave the tops of things empty…counters, coffee table, vanities in bathrooms…this makes them easier/quicker to clean and they just look nicer if they are not piled up with stuff. You’ll also save a little money doing this because you won’t be buying so many home things to try and make things “prettier”. Less stuff = less to organize. So think “top-less”, ladies! Your hubby will be fond of the concept and he’ll be eager to push you out the door next week for Apples of Gold! (the theme of the night was "quick and easy night" with the devotion focusing on "Loving your husband" so as you can see...pun intended :)

I found it difficult to keep my bathroom vanity "top-less" because we do not have a medicine cabinet and our underneath cabinet is small and used mainly for feminine products and toilet paper (oh, the things I will change when we remodel/gut our bathroom this summer).  We do have this ugly shelving unit behind the door that wasn't being used (and is hidden unless you are inside the bathroom with the door closed).  So I organized my items into like items, distributed them into bins, and labled them.  Now when I need something, it's easier to find and is stored neatly.  I have one specific to "gettin ready" and it has my cleanser, toner, moisturizer, deodorant, foundation, etc in it (I use a drawer for makeup).  When I get out of the shower in the morning, I pull it down, do everything in that bin, and put it back....leaving, my bathroom "top-less".  There is nothing on my bathroom sink besides a soap dispenser!
Bins - Hair/hair removal (wax kit, shaving needs, hair color); eyes/lips (contact stuff, glass, lip glosses, etc), Nails - polish, files, polish remover; Jewelry; gettin' ready bin complete with hair straightner on top
 Gettin Ready bin - inside

I have been using Fly lady for the past 6 to 9 months.  This is a free site which helps you organize your home and life.  When you join you will get emails each day with a 15 minute cleaning/organizing task each day.  Each week she focuses on a different area of your home.  It can be a bit overwhelming but read the emails that you want, and delete the rest.  Don't take on all the changes at once - as Fly lady says, take baby steps.  Pick and choose what you want to do. It has really helped me not be overwhelmed on where to start cleaning/organizing...and most of us just need a starting place!

Quote from FlyLady's website: "FlyLady uses the Sidetracked Home Executive (SHE) system as a basis for organizing her home and her life. She adds humor, spunk, and a dose of common sense to her advice, but be prepared - FlyLady does not allow whining. her special way of weaving housecleaning tips with homespun humor and daily musings about life. She has a no-nonsense approach to getting your house and your life in order. She mixes housekeeping advice with insights about life and love and anything else that is on her mind. This list is whatever FlyLady decides it should be -- it's her list. She expects subscribers to decide if they get anything out of it or not."

Go to link that says “join fly lady now”

Fly Lady also have a "tool box" – different cleaning tools to help make the job easier. FlyLady's Tool Box offers the best tools that make it fun to get the job done!  They are a fun shade of purple too!  I use her purple bags in a rag, the rubba scrubba (funny names too), and her fly lady calendar.

I also found these "chore charts" on Money Saving Mom's website here or here These you can make your own each week or however you want to do it.  I am going to star using these! 

Getting Ready/Being on Time

  • Invest in a good calendar. Have a large calendar where you can put all the families info. I use the one from Flylady because it has big spaces and fun stickers. They actually have a kids version too which looks fun for older kids to keep track of their chores and other things. The calendar costs around $10 for a 17 month calendar which includes all the fun stickers.  The student sticker kit (for kids) is an additional $6 for 600 more stickers.  She also has a free online version of the calendar.  I recommend getting a calendar that can be hung. I put my up on my fridge since it is a main gathering area for my family. If you have it on a desk or counter, it is more likely to have things built up on it and then you’ll never look at it. I put things like what meals I am having, places we have to be, what verses I need to read, which work out I am doing, and things we need to do or get done.  I put the daily tasks from FlyLady on it also.
  • One thing I do to get out of the door on time, is have a getting ready spot and/or drawer. My daughter is almost 4 and goes to pre-school 3 days a week. I know that at least 3 days, we will be going somewhere. In my daughters room, I put three changes of clothes in a bottom drawer in her room (complete with socks and shoes). This allows her to pick from three outfits that I have already picked out and approved on and she feels like she is picking out her own things to wear…without making a big mess and taking up a bunch of time.  Hoping that I can continue this unitl age 24!!  I also have a "getting ready" area for me where I put my clothes and things I need for the next day.
In the Kitchen

  • Here’s a new one I just started…Tupperware bowls and lids. I always try and stack what fits together but what about all those lids?? This one was from fly lady I think…put all your circle lids in one ziploc bag and all your square in the other (or whatever shapes you have).  

  • I do a lot of cooking in bulk to cut down on meals I have to cook. I have a family of 4 so any recipe that calls for a 9X13 I always just split in half in put into two smaller square pans or quart dishes. I freeze one and eat the other. If I am going to cut one onion in a bag, I might as well cut the whole bag and I freeze the rest in zip lock sandwich bags. I do this with onions, green peppers, potatos, carrots, etc…I just cut them all up at one time – one mess and it’s done.   A couple of good freezer cookbooks which I have recommended before are "Fix, Freeze, Feast" and "Once a month cooking"...most reciepes should freeze well.  I freeze most in freezer bags (and not those bulky pans) if I can and file them in the deep freeze like a file cabinet drawer (you have to freeze them flat first in order to achieve this though).  Mommy Saving Mom also has some good info on this topic here.  I rarely cook during the week.
  • This is one of those tips that I said might cause you to talk…There were a few organizational tips that I do that I was scared to share as then I would be confessing of my OCD problem:) This was one of them…When I load my dishwasher, I always put the forks all in one basket, teaspoons in one, tablespoons in one, knives in one, and all others in the back basket…that way when I unload it, I just have to pull them out and put them in the right place – no sorting.

  • Pictured below is what I use for storing restaurant coupons.  We love to go out to eat but we also like saving money while doing so.  I store this in one of my kitchen drawers. On the labels, I just put what month the coupons expire that way when the month is over, I just pull all of them out and throw them away…no sorting out or leaving them for a year.  I also have the menus in here based on Italian, Mexican, Chinese, and all other (only because I didn't have room for others). To save space I use each tab for 2 different months (one pictured is for March or August)

  • What do you do with recipes you find in magazines or that someone gives you? I just made a binder and put these clear sheets in there, and just put them in there like this. If they are smaller recipes, I tape them onto sheets to fit multiple ones on. I have it organized by appetizers, breakfasts, lunch, dinner, desserts.

     Magazine recipe
     4 recipes on note cards taped to a piece of paper...I know...genius, right?

In the Office/library

Wonder what to do with all those manuals you get for the products you purchase? I keep a file in my file cabinet and keep them in there. I have my files broken down into appliances, electronics, kitchen items, “baby/kid”, and all other. That way you are not sifting through drawers when your microwave is not working or when you go to sell an item, you always have the manual to go with it.

  • I file all my pictures on my computer based on my kids ages or places/events. Then every quarter I save them onto discs…I have a master copy of all the pictures and then my kids each have their own separate discs that they will have forever. (I write this task on my calendar on the last day of the month - every 3 months...that is how I remember.  I also have to clean out my vacuum filters every three months, so I do this on opposite months).  Each kid has their own copy of the pictures and we have a master copy.  If DVDs become obsolete, I am hoping it is an easy thing to transfer.

  • EWO Sermon notes – I bought a small binder and put dividers with all the books of the bible in it. Whatever the topic of the sermon, I put it behind that book of the bible. That way if I ever want to know more about a particular verse, I may have a sermon on it that might explain more.


Toys - Keep like items in tubs or old wipe containers – if it becomes too full, you have too much. This makes it easier to go through and sort and get rid of things, small increments of time.  If you only have 5 minutes, that's enough time to go through one bucket.  If you don't get past one bucket, hey, you at least got something accomplished.  This also helps your kids to be able to sort and put things away.

Examples of types of containers:  This will depend on what you have at home and how much money you want to spend. You can use old wipe containers, old boxes (decorate), rubbermaid containers, baskets, old easter and Halloween baskets.

Examples of "like" items – crayons, colored pencils, cars, tools, puzzles, balls, supervision required items (markers, crafts, etc), Stickers, playdoh/paints, color stuff, dress up stuff broken down into – hats, purses, accessories (phones, sunglasses, car keys, magic wands), necklaces, bracelets/watches/rings.

Here are some pictures of our playroom and how it is organized. It's just an unfinished basement that the kids love as their own place.  Here is the shelving unit we bought (hideous but sturdy)...see, nothing special, but simple and serves a purpose.

Top shelf with buckets - organized by different shapes and colors the kids can easily identify by memory what goes in each bucket.  Blue square - playdoh/paints, pink triangle - stickers, educationals items such as lace ups, flash cards, etc;  purple oval (yes, made by hand:) is the supervision required bucket - markers, wipeoffs, crafts; orange diamond - crayons, colored pencils, color books; green rectangle - puzzles
 Wipe tube for crayons - everything stacks nicely on top of each other.

 Different flash cards and game cards in ziploc bags labeled with marker (boxes get ripped and smashed in our house).
 Dress up - each shelf has different items on it...tiaras and necklaces (in last year's easter basket) on top, wands and head pieces on second shelf, purses on third shelf, bracelets (in old McD's happy meal bucket), phones, keys, accessories on bottom shelf.  In the orange bucket is hats, wings, etc.
 Dress up clothes hanging on a shower curtain (cheap!)
 Truck area - line up big ones...medium ones are in the green bucket and matchbox are in the cars bucket (last year's easter bucket)

 Other storage - blocks, potato head, little people
 Tools - in yellow garbage can buckets and old wipe container.

  • You’re more likely to get a babysitter if you already have a detailed list of things the sitter will need to know at your fingertips. Type something up on your computer and SAVE it. That way you can make adjustments to it as you need to. Some people print them out and always keep it on their fridge. Put the numbers where you and/or your husband can be reached, kid’s schedules, other important tips.

  • With kids growing out of things quickly or getting rid of toys quickly, you may have a garage sale every year. It can be such a hassle preparing for the garage sale, that you may not have one and forgo all the “gold” you could have made to buy new things! As I pull things out of my kids closets, I keep them on the hangars (these are cheap and you get to keep alot of them when you buy items) and price them as I take them out. Then I store them in the basement either in big rubbermaid containers, or by hanging them up until the garage sale. I do the same thing with their toys and with my own things. I have a garage sale type space in my basement where everything is together.  When garage sale season sweat. 
Warning…I would not implement all of these at once…your husband will NOT be fond of this concept and you all will be overwhelmed!  Baby steps as FlyLady says. 
I’d say the biggest key thing I can tell you to stay organized, is to organize God first. Keep God at the center of your day – and at the beginning of your day if possible. Mark 1:35 says "In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went away to a seculded place and was praying there.  This verse really convicted me.  So for the past two years, I have gotten up really early (yes, while it is still dark) and started my day with the Lord. This has greatly blessed not only me, but my family. When you “organize” God in your life first – all the other things kind of fall into place. It’s hard when you are tired and you just want some extra sleep, but for me that extra sleep didn’t help me have a better attitude toward my family or help me accomplish more through my day, but God did. And he blessed me…I really am no more tired when I get up early than when I sleep a little extra. We as woman can hold so many things dear to our heart that aren’t that important – how clean our house is, what types of material things we have, what our play room looks like and the types of buckets we use for our kids toys, decorations in our home, etc. But none of that matters to God. All he wants is us. One of my favorite songs right now is by Tenth Avenue North and it’s called “All the Pretty Things” and the chorus goes like this: “Look at all the pretty things, that keep my heart away…I can feel I’m fading…Cause Lord I love so many things, that keep me from your face, come and save me.” What are we allowing to keep us from God’s face? Let’s get organized with God.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Ten Stress Strategies Every Mom Needs - Summary from Hearts at Home

I went to the workshop given by Jill Savage at Hearts at Home called "Ten Stress Strategies Every Mom Needs".  Here are my notes that I thought might be helpful to you moms out there.  I am already implementing some of these strategies!!!

Jill says its important for us to remember that we can not go back and parent and that parenting is a marathon, not a sprint.  We need to be wise for the long haul.

10 Stress Strategies Every Mom Needs

1) Take a day off - Establish a day each week or each month that you can look forward to - for projects, relexation, whatever you want to do.  This will refresh you so that you have something to give back to your family. 
  • Find a friend and give each other a day off.  Say every other Tuesday you swap kids for the day.  The mom with the day off gets to do whatever she wants - even if that is to go back home and go to sleep!!! 
  • Arrange a night each week that your husband takes the kids so you can do something alone.
2) Increase margin - having enough "white space" in your lives to that you can read the words
  • limit our activities - our own activities and those of our children - this will increase white space
  • setting boundaries - one major and one minor activity/committment
    • example of major - teaching sunday school - it's a regular responsibility which requires priority and planning
    • example of minor - committing to a certain activity say 3 times a year (providing treats in your child's classroom).
3) Learn to say no - only you know what is best for your family (not the person who is asking)
  • Never say yes on the spot - pray and think over it and get back to the person
  • Carefully consider - brain space
  • Simply say no when unable to - no long list of excuses
Remember saying no allows opportunities for others.  You owe protection to your family - you don't owe someone something.  You don't have to say yes just because you are capable - think - "I'm capable but am I called?" (loved this!).  You might have to say no to things you might really want to do.

4) Take care of your body - Nutrition, Exercise & Sleep - all of these refuel and destress us. 
  • Increase fruits, veggies, and water
  • Decrease sugar intake
  • Leave things for morning
  • Take a NAP (loved this one)
  • Go to bed early
5) Expect Interruptions - underestimate the time it takes for everyone/thing
  • "motherhood is the ministry of interruptions" - use words like "of course" when interrupted
6) Refuel proactively - recognize when you have a "half full" tank.  We need to pull over and refuel.  You don't want to get to a place where someone has to rescue you.  You want to have overflow not emptiness.  Think about what refuels you and write them down (being alone, being with people, shopping, reading etc) and have those things carved out in your schedule so you are always refueling.

7) Choose important over the urgert
  • People/family = important; urgent = tasks/things that scream for attention (phone calls, laundry in washer that needs to be put in dryer). 
  • Do what you NEED to do not what you have to do - ask yourself "will it matter in 10 years?" (the phone call, the laundry, etc). 
8) Step away - proactively step away; relieve yourself - keeps you from doing something you will regret later
  • respond to a situation, not react
9) Ask for help (with WORDS, not body language, hits, etc ladies);  accept help.

10) Talk to Jesus - follow Jesus's example - he withdrew to a solitary place and prayed - so should we be praying!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Reece is turning 4!

Hard to believe Reece is turning 4 in a few weeks.  This year we are trying something exciting, fun and new for her birthday party.  She will be sharing it with her cousins who also have a birthday around her.  All 3 girls have April birthdays (they all LOVE diamonds too - April's birthstone) and we have one boy in March so we are doing a combined birthday party.  The girls are doing Hello Kitty and she is pretty excited about it!  Here are a few of her birthday pictures!

Hearts at Home

I was given the priveledge by our MOMs group to go to Hearts at Home this year.  It's an annual conference that is held at ISU to encourage, educate, and equip every mom in every season of motherhood using Christian values to strengthen families.  The founder is one of our very own Bloomington/Normal residents, Jill Savage.  The conference is held all over the world.  You can read more about it at  There were around 5000 who came this year and I think there were around 500 who weren't even if you aren't a parent, it might be interesting to you.  There are different workshops you can go to on marriage, devotion/prayer, parenting, etc.  I actually won my ticket at our MOMS group!  I was so excited because I was never able to attend before due to financial reasons, young babes at home, and other obligations.  Let me tell you...this ticket was meant for me!  I love once again how God orchestrates every detail of my life. 

Little did I know that the ticket I received was that of VIP status.  I arrived in a rush and went to check in when they told me I wasn't anywhere on their lists.  When I told them what the card looked like that I turned in, they promptly led me to another area of ISU where a lady told me she had been trying to contact me for a couple of weeks and asking everyone she saw if they knew who "Lindsay Bauer" was. She seemed overly excited to have finally found me - which made me feel really special! They had a name tag and a packet of info for me and then I was led straight to the 3rd row of Braden Auditorium!  I was able to pick from any of the break out workshops that I wanted and was invited to attend a special lunch with Jill Savage herself!  There were 3 other women that were invited and let me tell you, one was looking for a doula, one just had a baby and used a doula, and one is getting ready to have a baby!!  Our whole lunch was spent talking about births and doulas and they even asked if I would want to speak or have a table/workshop at next year's Hearts at Home!  Now tell me that God didn't plan that!?

I took good notes on my break out sessions and thought you could all benefit from the summaries so I was hoping to get some info out on the blog this week.  Since this is my 4th post today, I think I'll wait on it.  The workshops I attended were "Ten Stress Strategies Every Mom Needs" (Jill Savage); "Strong Willed Children: A focus on solutions" (Dr Kathy Koch); and "More than a Spanking" (what is discipline and punshiment; different tools - Dr. Julianna Slattery).  More to come on those!!

Brody's in a big boy bed!

Brody got his big boy bed last week and is doing great in it.  He's hasn't escaped yet but I don't think I blame him - it's too cozy to want to leave!  I thought we might have a rough ride transitioning him because we left the crib up in his room so we can sell it.  I thought if he thought he had an option, he'd choose the crib.  He hasn't even asked about it except "where's the baby?" that's suppose to sleep in it.  I can assure you (and him) there isn't one (at least not in my belly)!  Reece has asked the same thing especially since her cousin just added to his family, a little baby brother.  Reece said "But Bo has 3 children in his family...where's our third?"  Bless her heart.  I guess she thought Brody would be sharing his room with a baby brother too.  Brody ended up saying that only "baby Gabby" (Reece's baby doll) could sleep in the crib!
Brody pretending to sleep in his big boy crib...

Brody really sleeping in his big boy sweet!!

Another "doula-hood" update, nursing school, & Costa Rica


I enrolled in Childbirth International roughly 8 weeks ago and here I sit waiting for a certificate!  I was told that it would take me 9 months to 2 years to obtain...not bragging on me, but bragging on my God!!  It was through Him alone that I could do this!  My 8 exams are complete, my 12 page paper is complete (have to make some adjustments and return final paper), almost 1200 pages read (have about 60 left), 2 out of 3 book evals done (will complete the 3rd after 60 pages are done - next week), and completed roughly 15 hours with pregnant/birthing mammas! 

Last week I had the priveledge and honor of experiencing birth with my client & friend and as usual it was an amazing experiencing.  It was a very special time to me.  We went into the hospital around midnight and she had the baby around 11am that day.   I have completed the amount of hours needed for the certificate just by this one client, but technically I have another birth I must attend to actually obtain the certificate.  All is complete besides that!  So if you know of anyone that would let me help or observe for even just a few hours, that would be amazing! 

I am working with photographer to design my fliers and business cards.  I will be promoting her to my cleints for their new born pictures as well.  I am also working with one doctor's office who is fully supporting me!  I have a few people working on some word studies for me to help me come up with a catchy name.  These are pastors who will look at Greek and Hebrew meanings for the name "doula", "birth coach", "labor", and other terms.  God provided all of this!  There are a few other opportunities that just fell into my lap this past week (see Hearts at Home post).  I am truly in awe of God's hand all over this.  He has truly made this a clear and easy process.  Who knew that when you are obeident to God's plan for your life, his "yoke is easy; His burden is light" Matthew 11:29. ?

Nursing School
I have met with an advisor and weighed some options for nursing school. It was a relief to know what would transfer from my prior degrees.  However, I still have not made a decision on it and am still praying over it.  As much as I would LOVE to go back to school and work towards this, I feel the burden will be heavy on me and my family.  I do not want to regret missing out on family things and spending time with my young kiddos.  So selfishly in my mind, I want to, but my heart is saying otherwise.  If I do anything at this point, I may take a biology course in the fall and just start out slow taking a course at a time.  I know that I can not take the CNA stuff this summer through Heartland because of the Costa Rica trip but I am looking into another option in town.  Not sure if I will do it this summer or not.  Just being in the hospital and seeing the nurses worked also makes me more so want to especially when you see some of the ways they negatively impact their patients.  That's a whole other blog post though!  :)

Costa Rica
Preparations are underway for the Costa Rica trip for June.  I am in the process of writing my support letter.  We will be raising support in form of money and pray for personal trip expenses, eye glasses/sunglasses and other things for the eye clinic, and also for a wall that we are needing to build for our missionaries that live there.  Very excited for this trip and can't believe it's 2 months away!!