7 Quick Takes Saturday - September 28, 2013

--- 1 ---

No baby yet. I'm 38w4d today. Elanor was born at 39w0d and Violet at 40w3d, so I have a ways to go before declaring this my longest pregnancy, but it sure as heck FEELS like my longest pregnancy.

--- 2 ---

I had two bouts of prodromal labor last week - one on Sunday, one on Wednesday. On both days I was having contractions averaging about a minute long and 10 minutes apart for about 12 hours (around 10am-10pm). Some contractions were more painful than others, some were Braxton-Hicks. We gave our doula a text to let her know what was going on each time, but didn't head to the hospital or anything. Once I fell asleep, the contractions either stopped or were so mild that I slept through them. Since then, I've had sporadic Braxton Hicks but no more of the prodromal stuff, thank goodness.

--- 3 ---

I had an appointment on Friday and asked the midwife to do a cervical check, as I was curious to see if the prodromal labor had effected any changes. I'm still not dilated but I am mostly effaced. I was pleased that there was some progress, anyway. William was born two days after my midwife did a cervical check where she declared me not dilated or effaced at all, so I know the numbers don't necessarily mean anything. Still, mostly effaced means less work when labor finally does kick in for real.

--- 4 ---

After my appointment Collin and I went to the hospital to preregister, because the nurse gave us a heads up that they've completely changed the registration process since the last time I gave birth there. Apparently now everyone has to stop by the admitting desk on the first floor (or go through the ER, if it's before 5am or after 8pm) instead of going directly up to L&D in the 2nd floor, as was standard practice before if it was during business hours. Something to do with their new intake system. The lady we spoke with said that moms in labor were pushed to the front of the line, and moms in hard labor just had to give their name and birthdate before going to L&D. Still, seems like an unnecessary hoop to jump through to me.

When Gabe was born we did have to go through the ER, since it was around midnight. But with Violet it was around 9:30am so we went straight up to L&D, and she was born at 9:46am. If we'd had to go to the admitting desk first with her, she might have been born in the elevator or something. Hopefully we'll have more time with Tiebreaker!

--- 5 ---

In non-baby-related news (sort of), our washing machine is acting up. During the spin cycle it makes an unearthly rattling noise, like there are coins or screws or something under the barrel (and if I gently shake the barrel when the machine is off, I can hear rattling as well). It's shaking quite violently too. I've had off-balance loads before and this is markedly different. Collin tinkered around with it for a bit but nothing he tried worked, so we've scheduled a repairman to come on Monday morning.

We're afraid to use it in the meantime because if there is a bolt or something that's loose, we don't want to make the problem worse and possibly cause a flood or something. Dirty laundry is piling up, sigh.

On the other hand, scheduling a repairman for Monday pretty much guarantees that Tiebreaker will come this weekend, right? :)

--- 6 ---

Better get your guesses in while you can. I guessed today so I've already lost my own poll. :P

--- 7 ---

This morning, Gabriel lifted up my shirt, poked my belly, and said, "Baby all done!" From his mouth to God's ears...

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Examining Scouting Choices - A Letter from My Husband

My husband wrote what I consider to be a kick-ass letter to our parish the other day, and he gave me permission to post it.

Greetings [Parish] Scout Leadership and Pastors,

My name is Collin Wahlund, I have been a parishioner at [Parish] for several years.  I have had a great interest in sharing the experiences that scouting had brought to me with my children at our parish, especially with my oldest son who has just entered Kindergarten this year.

Unfortunately, in light of the recent decision by the BSA to allow open and active homosexual behavior to be declared acceptable I simply cannot in good conscience allow my children to be involved with that organization.  This stance that the BSA has taken is even more disconcerting given that the incoming president of the BSA, Randall Stephenson, is on record in a homosexual activism publication for being committed to allow actively homosexual men as scout leaders.

Since homosexual activity is gravely sinful by the teachings of our Church, I cannot take this stance lightly.  Given that boys in scouting should be abstinent (as they are not married) there should be no involvement of sexuality in scouting at all.  Adults should also be an example to the scouts on how to be "morally straight" and "to do my duty to God", as the Oath says.

I do not want simply to complain without ideas on how to improve the situation though.  It would be a harder decision if there were no options whatsoever other than exiting scouting or compromising our morals, but there are morally-acceptable alternatives.

I would like to suggest that we look into migrating our scouting group to Trail Life USA.  This group specifically is trying to facilitate scouting that returns to the morals intended originally.  They're trying hard to make scouts feel as welcome as possible and to transfer all achievements of the individual scout to them inside of the new organization so the boys are rewarded for their prior hard work.

This organization follows the same guidelines about homosexuality that our Church does, that the inclinations towards evil behavior are not inherently sinful, but that homosexual activity is wrong.  Therefore they will not be searching to try to remove boys who try to resist evil urges.

Similarly, openly being involved with heterosexual premarital sex is also wrong and this is against the organization's values, which are committed to Christian morals. Teaching and illustrating right from wrong should absolutely be an integral part to scouting and should not be put aside or shrugged off because making a change would be inconvenient.

I highly wish for our church's scouting leadership and our pastors to read the following article about Trail Life USA and consider that this organization may be a better fit for our parish to be actively involved in:  http://www.worldmag.com/2013/09/rapid_response

You can also find more information as well at the Trail Life USA website: http://www.traillifeusa.com

I hope this is strongly considered as a possibility, and I'm more than glad to help look into this option (or others, such as the dedicatedly Catholic Scouts of St. George - http://scoutsofsaintgeorge.com).

I really wish to get my sons and myself involved in our scouting program at [Parish].  Please help turn my family's disappointment in the BSA into pride that our parish are leaders in a return to morality in scouting.  I look forward to hearing the responses from our scouting and church leadership.  Thank you very much for your serious consideration in this important issue.

Mr. Collin Wahlund and Family

7 Quick Takes Friday - September 20, 2013

--- 1 ---

Still pregnant. Boring OB appointment today (which is a good thing). I declined a cervical check because I didn't feel like it. My group B strep test was negative. I'm at 37w3d and so far it seems like Tiebreaker is content to stay where s/he is for now. That's kind of a good thing, as I still have quite a bit at work that I'd like to accomplish before I go on leave, but at the same time I'm anxious to meet this baby.

--- 2 ---

I'm now working from home full-time until labor starts, hallelujah. Not having to commute 90 miles per day (round trip) has helped a lot.

--- 3 ---

I'm happy to report that the doula drama is over. After the last doula's no-show, we set up interviews with two other doulas in the area. The first interview went extremely well, but we didn't want to officially hire her until we'd met the other doula and given her a chance to knock our socks off. Well, other doula ended up cancelling due to illness (she sent me an e-mail the night before, so it wasn't a last-minute thing) and we decided that was a sign that we should just go ahead and hire the one doula who had actually shown up. :P

Since then, we've paid our deposit and had our initial prenatal visit (and she proved to be very punctual!). Collin and I like her tremendously and we are both very happy she'll be a part of our labor and birth experience.

Here's her website if you know if anyone in the northwest Phoenix area looking for a doula!

--- 4 ---

We got Elanor & William's school pictures back the other day:

Pretty darn cute, if I do say so myself.

--- 5 ---

And here's one of me.


--- 6 ---

Congratulations Kara and family! Baby Samuel is precious!!! (I don't have a pregnancy buddy any more, *sniff*.)

--- 7 ---
Have you checked out the Dobrovits fundraiser yet? If not, you should!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes Friday - September 6, 2013

--- 1 ---

 Collin and I celebrated 12 years of marriage on September 1! 

We hired Kara to watch our kids and spent the whole day playing Dungeons and Dragons. It was glorious.

Our joint gift to each other was an iPad! I've wanted one for years, so I was very happy when he proposed that idea. It'll come in handy when the baby's born; we can FaceTime with relatives and show him/her off.

--- 2 ---

Quick word of warning - the rest of my quick takes are all pregancy/birth related, so if that bores you, feel free to skip them. :)

I could very well have a baby this month (I'm full term as of September 17!). Whoa.

34 weeks, 3 days

Last week, my ExpectNet game appeared gone forever (the domain had expired and was redirecting users to a bunch of Internet ads), so I created a new guessing game at BabyHunch.com. Then ExpectNet came back up, so now I guess I have two. Sigh. Feel free to guess on one, the other, or both.

--- 3 ---

On that note, my to-do list for this weekend involves packing my hospital bag, as well as an overnight bag for the kids if they end up staying over at someone's house when I go into labor. If past experience is any indication, if I'm all ready to go by 36 weeks, I'll go past my due date (*cough* Violet *cough*).

I don't really WANT to go past my due date, but it can't hurt to be prepared for a change. With every kid except Violet, I was packing my bag while in early labor.

--- 4 ---

The doula drama continues. I set up an interview with a doula in the area, and she canceled at the last minute (sent me an e-mail 20 minutes before we were scheduled to meet) saying her kids had been sick all night so she'd rather not risk getting me sick. Okay, fine, perfectly understandable. So we rescheduled for later in the week, and she didn't show up. I called twice and sent a text, but didn't hear from her until nearly 11pm that evening, when she sent a text saying that one of her kids had hit her head and they'd been at the hospital, and she didn't have my number with her so she couldn't call. Okay, emergencies happen, and maybe in her panic she left her cell phone at home. I called her twice and left messages, asking her to call me so we could talk... and since then I've heard nothing (it's been nearly two weeks now).

You know, I understand that emergencies happen. But if you're running a business, shouldn't you make it a priority to be responsive (as much as practicable) to current and potential customers throughout?  I told Collin I'm starting to think we're on some sort of doula blacklist, given how two in a row have suddenly and inexplicably become incommunicado.

So, our search continues.  We have an interview this afternoon, and another on Sunday afternoon, and hopefully one of them will work out.

--- 5 ---

If anyone is incredibly bored and wants to take a virtual tour of The Nesting Place (where both Violet and Gabe were born, and where this baby will be born), you can do so here.

--- 6 ---

I start working from home full-time once I hit full-term, thank goodness. The commute is getting pretty rough, physically.

--- 7 ---

I've been obsessed with birth stories/videos lately (so much so that I have an entire Pinterest board dedicated to them), and this is a terrific birth video (nothing too terribly graphic). Feel free to link me up to any that you find especially inspiring (I prefer natural birth stories, especially ones in a hospital setting.)

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

11 On Her Own

I can barely manage four (well, five) kids with the help of a fully present and supportive husband, so I can't fathom how Kristin manages as well as she does.

Please help her in her goal of going to nursing school so she can support her family!

Financial support is awesome, but I know prayer support and social media sharing are also much appreciated.

Welcome to The Catholic Working Mother

Click here to order The Catholic Working Mom’s Guide to Life , released May 28, 2019 by Our Sunday Visitor Press. My blog,  The Catholic ...