Friday, February 24, 2017

Winter 2017

So hard to believe that 2016 has come and gone and we are almost done with February 2017!!! The children are growing way too fast for me!

Christian is for sure going to grow past me in the next year or two and little Miss Naomi is just as plump and adorable as she can be!

We made it past lesson 100 in our Abeka curriculum! Chris is working night shifts so I have the van all day to run the kids all around town to all the playgrounds, libraries and museums!  We got a membership to the Virginia living Museum which the kids love, they have some really cool exhibits and a planetarium!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Network Marketing Thoughts

So some people absolutely despise Network Marketing think it's the devil himself at the top of alllllll the companies that utilize its business model. They think everyone that is a distributor for a network marketing company is trying to live on the beach and travel the world in a private jet by manipulating their friends and family into buying worthless junk and teaching others to do the same. Well here is the truth: there are some greedy network marketing  people who only see $ signs when they see people......but I have met some greedy people in the military and any other job for that matter. That's a matter of the persons heart. It's wicked and evil to desire to be rich. The Bible says they that will be rich (will meaning wanting to be rich ) fall into many foolish and hurtful lusts. God says, to Lay not up treasures for yourself on the earth and to labor not for wealth. God wants us to be content with food and raiment. But here is a thought.....just a thought. ....some people get into a network marketing company because they love the product. We as people  naturally share and recommend  things that are helpful to us everyday, for instance I rave about the moby wrap and tula for baby wearing, and Trader Joe's for decently priced organic produce. ....however I have never gotten a check in the mail or any free products for recommending their business to others. With network marketing its pretty much a glorified refferral program. What in the world is wrong with a person sharing something they love and and getting a referral bonus as a thank you for sharing their product and bringing in more business for that company? In our experience with Young Living we first got a starter kit because we wanted to try using oils and fell in Love with God's creation of healing plants. Purity is big for us; somewhere in the neighborhood of 330% more tea tree oil is sold than is even grown in a year. With the essential oil industry booming and  just about every retailer besides McDonald's now selling them I believe and stand by a company who has their own farms which personal friends of mine have visited and watched first hand the distillation process. I am so greatful and thankful for the opportunity to have essential oils and supplements for our family and it's pretty much all reimbursed with our monthly commission and referral bonus check. Plus rewards points on top of that!! Anyway long blog post short message to the network marketing haters of this world: not all network marketing distributors are greedy predators trying to rival the lifestyle Warren Buffet.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Monday, October 17, 2016

Lucky #7 : Naomi Ruth Esther Birth Story

Just as I was starting to think I would be pregnant forever.......God finally blessed us to have baby #7 rather unexpectedly and quickly! I went over my "due date" by 5 days and had the most intense Braxton hicks contractions starting at about 38 weeks. My husband came home on leave at 39 weeks and 3 days, so I was even prepared to have baby without him being home since we had half of our children at 38 weeks! So when Oct. 10th rolled around (40 WKS.) and I was still not in labor, I was then starting to prepare in my mind that my husband might have to go back on the road before the baby would be born! Every morning we prayed that, that day would be the day baby would be born....we went out to a park everyday to walk around and still nothing more than some pesky Braxton hicks contractions. With our last 5 births from Noah to Moses I experienced PROM  (premature rupture of membranes) in other words my water would break way, way before I went into active labor!  I would have to induce my own labor with a breast pump and herbs. So in my mind I am just waiting for my water to break for a good warning time that baby would be ready in the next day or two. However on early Saturday morning I was awoken out of sleep with intense contractions that I could not sleep through, still no water breaking so I just ignored them and did some laundry, took a shower and laid down in between contractions. Saturday morning we had planned to go out soul winning with our church....but decided to stay home since church is 40 min. Away and through an under water tunnel  that can sometimes be blocked for 30-40 min. by the slightest fender bender, and I could just imagine that It would be just my luck to have to give birth in our van  in traffic.  We had planned to take the kids to the park again to walk around but I was just not up for that either, since I had been up all night with contractions. I spent most of the day trying to catch up on the sleep I lost the night before, but the contractions kept coming! I wasn't 100% sure I was in true labor since my water hadn't broken, but was concerned because of the amount and intensity of the contractions, so I wanted to go check on baby at the hospital to make sure baby was okay. I figured they would just send me back home if baby was fine and my water still hadn't broke. We left at about 4:15 pm. The contractions continued on the drive over which seemed really long with my husband driving super slow  and catching almost all the red lights. Finally we got there and found the labor and delivery. I checked in and they told us to wait in the lobby while they prepared a room for us. My husband could tell I was very uncomfortable with the contractions and so after waiting 10 or 15 minutes we went back up to the front desk and there was a nurse there ready to call us back. We went to the exam room and got the hospital gown on and I went to the bathroom in the room and my husband being there the last two births looked at my face and went to the hallway to find a nurse and told her, "my wife looks like she did last time we had a baby, I think she is going to have the baby now" with that we had a doctor and a couple nurses come right a way and asked me to lay down so she could check my cervix and get a heartbeat on baby. No way was I going to lay on my back in the middle of contractions so I laid on my side and heard her say, "I feel a bulging bag of waters, head, no cord and she is complete". Then she asked me if I wanted to go over to the labor and delivery room or just stay there to have baby in the small exam room. I don't remember if I said anything at all,  I just laid on my side and held onto the bed rail, she said I could do what I wanted , I could lay on my side and push if I wanted to, whatever I felt like doing. So I felt like pushing and out popped the bag of water. They rolled us over in the bed to the labor room and baby came in just a few more minutes with a few pushes at 5:18pm.  They handed me baby and I couldn't even believe it was a girl!!!!

They asked my husband if we wanted the eye cream and all the other things they do for routine hospital birth babies. He said no to everything and there was absolutely no fuss or fight! The dr. And nurses all told us they are there to do what we wanted......a big change from my previous hospital births!! They were all very kind and gave us all the space we wanted and said whenever we were ready for them to get baby measured and weighed to just press the nurse button.  They did check my blood pressure which was elevated probably from just the quickness and unexpected delivery, but other than that everything was perfect!  The hospital was very clean and just recently renovated so the bathroom looked like a hotel with sparkly tile backsplash!  They gave us a pack  of newborn diapers,  wipes, all the nylon panties I wanted, brought me food and snacks. I was surprised no one came in to tell me the dangers of not getting the vitamin k shot or rolling their eyes about not bathing baby. When we asked about discharge they said that it's at 48 hours, we asked to go home sooner and they agreed as long as baby didn't have any signs of jaundice or heart problems. Our pastor and his wife stopped by with a card, Balloon and healthy snacks for the night at the hospital.

It was now night time, Chris pulled out the chair into a bed and went to sleep, I stayed up almost all night just holding, cuddling and feeding  baby. In the morning Chris left to pick up the children who were with my sister and took them to church, the playground and brought them back to the hospital.

 All the staff that came by the room just loved the children and said how beautiful they all were. No one made us feel like our children didn't belong there. The kids were all excited to see baby and try out all the hospital snacks and drinks.

We did the pku test along with a bilirubin test and her levels were very good, so we got a knock on the door and it was the discharge nurse sending us off with a gift bag of diapers, wipes, nursing pads, baby records and footprints. Chris got everyone back to the van and pulled  up to the front. The nurse carried baby Naomi in the car seat and made sure we snapped her in place and wished us well.  That was all, very smooth birth and pleasant hospital stay! A little over half way through the pregnancy is when we decided to do a hospital birth instead of a homebirth and  I hated the idea of  going back to the hospital after having 2 homebirths, but at the end of the day what I really want for my births are respect for my birth decisions and a trained professional guranteed to be there at the actual birth just in case of an emergency. Unfortunately  I didn't feel like the homebirth midwives in this region offered either of those gurantees.  Even during the prenatal visits the staff was very respectful and allowed me to bring all the children to the appointments and when a male Dr. Was assigned for my group b test he let me do my own swab test so I would not be exposed in front of a male! We also opted NOT to do a sonogram, genetic testing, Flu shot etc...and nobody threw a fit. Praise the Lord for our sweet new blessing Naomi Ruth Esther, my husband being the labor coach, my sister for watching the other 6 children for the evening and all our friends and family who prayed for us!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

A little Pumpkin is On the Way !

To celebrate our 7th baby coming this fall, we did a pumpkin theme baby shower!!!

Who doesn't love pumpkin flavored everything???

I made some games and got lots of pumpkin snacks!!

My Aunt and Mommy came down from DC to celebrate!

Rachel is convinced she is having a sister!!
38 weeks and 2 days today!!!

We had lots of friends come and shower us with cash and gift cards, some cloth diapers and hand made burp cloths! We opted out of the sonogram this time around so we have no idea what we are having!!! The suspense is killing me!!! Hopefully I will have a birth story post in a week or two =)

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Back to Hospital Birth

Image result for hospital vs home birth
I know this is shocking and I am still kind of shocked we are planning a hospital birth this time around. There are only 3 different homebirth midwife companies that attend in the area we live in and EVA Homebirth is definitely disqualified because of our last birth experience (you remember the midwives who told me NOT to try and go into labor the day my water broke because they had another mom in labor and didn't so much as come to check my temperature or verify that my membranes ruptured some 30 hours after I called them and told them my water broke and needed to start inducing labor with natural methods and then tried shipping me off to the hospital after we spent some $4,000 out of pocket btwn. blood work and prenatal visits!) So I set out hopefully to find a different midwife and it sounded good; I even went to an appointment.......but the appointment was downright awful! The office and birth center was filthy like musty clothes and blankets stuffed in corners, dingy fetal dopplers lying around on the floor, toys everywhere, old soda cups....I wish I had taken a picture.....but it was all kind of surreal. If that wasn't enough there was another mom in there with her 2 kids just hanging out at my appointment in the chair next to me who changed her baby's diaper in the chair next to me and didn't even bother to get up and wash her hands....then she starts telling the midwife how she is leaving her husband and dating women and the midwife is just staring into her eyes telling her how much she has been thinking about her lately......She could obviously tell I was taken aback and said, "Oh you know this is how prenatal appointments should be ....a group setting with other moms ". It can't get any weirder right......wrong.... we hear scratching and howling and she says, "Oh that's my pit bull in the other room, I should let him out to play with the kids." UUUUMMMMMMMM NO!  I like animals alot but I don't want a strange pitbull unleashed with my 6 children in the room because this is a breed that makes up 6% of the dog population and does like 80% of the fatal attacking!

 Never the less I am not picky and was just going to sign papers anyway but the Lord intervened and caused her printer to run out of paper and she was supposed to mail the papers to me ....but they never came some 2 months later! On top of this shenanigans Chris is doing truck driving and so there is no guarantee he will be here at the I don't want to go unassisted without a midwife or husband and 6 other children roaming So I called up the local hospital!
Image result for riverside hospital newport news va
The local hospital has an OB residency program that even without insurance costs less than a homebirth the total would only be approx. $3,200 and if paid within 60 days of birth $2,220! Praise the Lord our insurance covers the whole thing though!  So far the appointments have been good, one of the dr.'s told me I am the expert with this being my 7th child and so it seems they should have no problems with my natural birth plan. =)  Baby is due in about 7 weeks so I should have a birth story soon =)

Friday, August 5, 2016

DIY Thieves Laundry Soap

So we have been Young Living Essential Oil addicts for going on 2 years and embraced the chemical free home!! God has been so good that with sharing our love for aromatherapy we have a nice little team from referrals so our monthly orders are paid for and we get points back with every order =) For this reason I have been using our mandatory $100 monthly order (only mandatory if you want a commission check for that month) to buy the ready made thieves laundry soap for the last year and I love it, I really do, but at $26 for 62 loads I wanted to try and stretch our oily orders further. Especially with alllllllllllllllll the dirty clothes and diapers around this house!

Image result for young living laundry soap

 So I finally got around to making diy laundry soap!!! I have been using it for about 5 days and my clothes look clean and smell wonderful!!! There are a bazillion different Pinterest recipes for dry and liquid diy detergent so I will share the one I used =)
What you need :
5 gallon paint bucket ($5)
5 caps of Thieves household cleaner (about $2.75 worth of cleaner from the 14.4oz bottle)
1 bar of soap shredded (recommended was the thieves bar soap, but I used Melaluca Geranium) ($10.25)
1/2 cup Borax (about $0.50)
1 cup Washing soda (about $1)
2 cups.Baking soda (about $0.70 worth from the 2lb box)

About $20 for the first time making it and then $15 after that because you don't have to buy the paint bucket again =)  S0 $15 for 160 loads vs. the $26 for 62 loads is more than double the savings!

What to Do:
Boil 4 cups of water, add in shredded bar soap cook on low and dissolve, add in the rest of the ingredients. Fill paint bucket half way with water and then dump in the pot of ingredients. Put the lid on the bucket and let sit overnight. It will be lumpy in the morning so give it a good mixing with a hand mixer. It should bubble up and smell amazing!! Use 1 cup of this mix per load. This makes 160 loads!!! Happy Washing!!!

Numbers 19:19 And the clean person shall sprinkle upon the unclean on the third day, and on the seventh day: and on the seventh day he shall purify himself, and wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and shall be clean at even.