My journey through motherhood and this little thing we call life...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Neptune Fest is the Best!

Today we went to the annual Neptune Festival, down at the VA Beach Oceanfront, and had a blast!!!!!! The forecast was calling for afternoon showers, but despite being overcast all day, we didn't see a drop of rain. The majority of time we spent at the boardwalk was doing something that Wip loved best....dancing and listening to music. Live bands and large open places to dance in, is right up Little Man's alley. We also enjoyed an extremely unhealthy, yet so, so, soooo yummy dinner. Sean got the Philly Cheesesteak that he'd been craving all day, I got some oh so yummy Wood Chick's BBQ (Seriously, they are the best! How good, you ask?? Well, they beat Bobby Flay in an episode of Throwndown...that's how good), and Wipee got to have a mound of fresh cut fries and lots of spoonfuls of Mommy's BBQ. After our first course settled, we shared a delicious funnel cake (which William thought was even more delicious when rubbed behind his ear first) and let William run around in the sand a bit. Thankfully, he had no interest in going in the water (unlike the last time we went to the beach and he attacked the ocean...maybe he knew it just wasn't the season). Anyhoo, I've got a movie to watch with the hubs. Enjoy the pictures below as well as your weekend!

In the midst of yelling "Cheese!!!!" at the camera

Monday, September 21, 2009

Calling all bargain shoppers!!

Ok, guys, I have a question that could really use your input. Here it is: Is it ok (and by "ok", I mean, not completely tasteless and tacky) to buy some of William's Christmas gifts off Craig's List/Ebay? I bought a kitchen set for Wip off Ebay for his Birthday, but it was brand new and in the box. Recently, I found a toddler basketball hoop on Craig's List for $5 in like new condition. Most of me wants to just go ahead and get it and give it to him now...but I do that with EVERYTHING and then nothing gets held until the holiday! That got me thinking, is it tacky to get it, keep it hidden, and have it under the tree as a "Santa gift"... already put together and ready to be played with? I know he's only one and could care less, but to be honest, I don't want others to be like, "she yard sales her kid's Christmas stuff?!"....see, I do care what you, and others, think!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Question: Is she really going to go through with that?? Answer: You bet I am!

I thought I would share some information that I found during my endless research on natural childbirth. Since you already know why I have chosen to go to a Midwife rather than an OB, and why I have decided to forgo unnecessary medical intervention (if you don't know, click over to here), I'd now like to share with you some of the information from my "marathon training" program (head's up, guys, you may want to skip this post!).

Birth Plans

With William we had no "official" birth plan other than "we'll see what happens and take what's thrown at us". Did that work for us? NOPE! Hence, this pregnancy we are constructing a written birth plan. Below is a sample pattern for the type of plan that I will be constructing:

Begin with an introductory paragraph about yourself and who will be with you during labor.

Our Goals
Goal 1
Goal 2
Goal 3

In case of unexpected situations
Goal 1
Goal 2
Goal 3

Newborn Care
Goal 1
Goal 2
Goal 3

Here is a sample birth plan (note that this is not our birth plan...I will share ours though when Sean and I have both completed it):

Home Labor Goals:

We would like to labor at home as long as possible, with our doula present, before going to the hospital.

Hospital Labor Goals:

We plan to have present at the birth and or labor: Midwife Name, Father Name, Doula Name.
We ask that all other visitors and unnecessary staff be turned away until we (the parents) have had time alone with our new baby.
The mother prefers not to have an IV administered unless determined to be required for another procedure to facilitate delivery.
The mother prefers not to have a catheter unless determined to be required for another procedure to facilitate delivery.
The birth environment is important to us. We ask that lights be kept dim, noise be kept to a minimum, the door be kept closed for privacy.
We will bring our own music.
The mother may wish to wear her own clothing, although the staff may offer her a hospital gown. The mother would like the opportunity to be up out of bed as much as possible during labor, depending on her needs.

Birth Goals:

We are attempting to have a natural, un-medicated birth without unnecessary medical or chemical intervention.
We understand that there are procedures which may become necessary.
Except in the case of an emergency, we ask that we be given the opportunity to accept or refuse any procedure or medication.
We request that the least invasive or restricting versions of procedures be used.
Induction (if necessary)

Pain Management Goals:

We plan to handle pain with relaxation, massage and water (shower or tub).
Please do not offer chemical pain relief.
Delivery Goals
The mother would like to push at he own pace (Mother-Directed Pushing).
The mother prefers not to have an episiotomy unless determined to be medically necessary. She would first like to try perineal massage, support and warm compresses.
If labor or delivery seems stalled, we would like the opportunity to try different positions (hands and knees, squatting, birth stools, etc.).
We would like to have the baby placed on the mother's chest with skin-to-skin contact immediately after the birth and for the first 1 to 2 hours following the birth.
We would like to try to have the baby breastfeed as soon as possible.
We would like the staff to help the mother change position if necessary to facilitate breastfeeding.

We would like the father and the doula to be allowed to take photos or video tape parts of the labor and birth.

Umbilical Cord:

Please offer the father the opportunity to cut the cord.

Newborn Care Goals:

Please delay the eye medication and vitamin K shot until we have spent some time with the baby, preferably as long as possible before leaving the labor and delivery room.
We would like to be present at the baby's first bath.
We would like to have a set of footprints stamped into our scrapbook when footprints are done.
Circumcision (if boy)
We would like at least one parent to be present at the circumcision.

Cesarean Section (if necessary):

The mother would like to be conscious
The mother would like the father present if he is willing.
We would prefer that our baby breastfeed immediately or as soon as possible afterward in the recovery room.
We prefer the baby and father remain in the recovery room with the mother.

Birth Recovery Goals:

We prefer to have a private room, if available, and that the father and baby be allowed to room-in.
We prefer that our stay at the hospital be extended to the longest our insurance will allow so that the mother may recover as fully as possible before returning home.
Breastfeeding Goals
If not rooming-in, we would like the baby brought to the mother to meet it's on-demand feeding needs.
We would like to establish breastfeeding. Please do not offer any bottles to the baby without parents' notification of a medical need.
We would like to meet with a lactation consultant before leaving the hospital to have techniques checked.

Thank you for taking the time to help us achieve a natural childbirth for our first baby!

Comfort Measures for Labor:

Positions/Movement in labor- When it comes to positions in labor, more is better. Changing your position can help align your baby properly, speeding the labor process. Some positions can help reduce specific types of pressure or pain, so be willing to use whichever are necessary when labor begins. Being familiar with how the positions feel before labor begins is helpful, so take some time to try them out and decide which ones are most comfortable to you. Combining movement with positions can help encourage a productive labor while helping you cope with the stress and pain of contractions. Walking, swaying and rocking your hips are especially helpful because they make it easier for your baby to move through your pelvis. Specific movements can be used to achieve specific goals. For example, pelvic rocking can reduce the pain of a sore back. Understanding which movements and which positions help to encourage specific outcomes can help your labor move as quickly as problem free as possible

Labor Tools- Anything that will help you cope with labor is a labor tool. For example, if you enjoy drinking a specific tea be sure to have some on hand for labor. Pay attention to the things you do to be comfortable every day. Do you use a specific size or type of pillow? Do you like specific scents or sounds? Is there an object or two that help you relax? Items that keep you comfortable in your every day life can help you stay comfortable during labor. Once you have identified a few things, explore the ways they could be used during labor. A favorite book my help you pass the time in early labor. A favorite movie may be fun to watch before contractions are too strong. A favorite chair might provide wonderful opportunities for positions. A favorite shirt may help you feel comfortable in active labor. Experiment and remember the only guideline is that your tools must help you stay comfortable.

Mastering Relaxation- Your first job will be to learn to recognize tension in your body. Quite possibly your body is carrying a lot of tension right now, only you are so used to feeling it that you don't even recognize that you are tense! Understanding the difference between a tensed and a relaxed muscle is key to being able to relax on demand. Begin this exercise by assuming a comfortable position lying on your side, whichever side is most comfortable to you, with the top leg bent forward reaching past the bottom leg. The actual position you choose will be personal to you and your bodies intricacies. For some women, a pillow under the knee of the top leg will improve comfort. For other women, a pillow under the head. Do not be too concerned about the placement of your arms, do what feels comfortable. This side-lying position will be the basis for most of your relaxation exercises. That is because it is one of only two positions that allow you to relax every muscle in your body as much as possible. You see, every muscle in your body has an opposing muscle so that you can move the parts of your body in many different directions. When one muscle is fully relaxed, its opposing muscle is fully tensed! For that reason, straight legs and arms should be an indication to you that your muscles are not as relaxed as they should be.
Lying on your side will allow you to bend your joints half way, without putting too much pressure on any muscle group. Allowing your muscles to be as relaxed as possible to start helps you achieve the most relaxation possible. In your comfortable side-lying position, choose a part of your body and tense it as much as possible. For example, if you chose your shoulders, lift them high to your ears really crunching your neck. Feel the discomfort and tightness in these muscles. Recognize how the tightness carries to neighboring muscles. Then, after holding that tension for about ten seconds, release the muscles, letting the body part go limp or get soft. Remember not to take the muscles into the opposite tensed position yet, we are trying to learn the difference between tensed and relaxed, not between the two possible tensions for each body part. Feel the looseness in the muscle, and the difference in comfort. Repeat the tensing and relaxing a few more times, trying to achieve a deeper relaxation of the muscle each time. After you have tensed and relaxed that muscle group in one direction a few times, switch to the other direction. For the shoulder example, you will now press your shoulders down toward your waist, as if you were trying to stretch your arms to reach something low without bending over. Feel the tension that is created by the muscle this way, and the difference between the tensed position and the relaxed position. There may be other directions you can try with certain muscle groups. For example the shoulders can be tensed forward or backward, each time tensing a different set of muscles. Become as familiar as possible with the feeling of tension in your muscles. Once you have explored all possibilities with a muscle group, move on to a different group. Don't forget to do your face and neck, back and buttocks, chest and stomach. What you will find during the week or two that you practice this exercise is that some muscles will come under your control very easily, and you will be able to relax them without tensing them first. That is good, in fact that is what you ultimately want to achieve. You will also find that there are muscles that seem resistant to your desire to have them relax. That is ok, you need to know what muscles you need help relaxing so your coaches will know where to concentrate efforts.

Setting the Environment- Lighting: Most women prefer a dimly lit or dark room when laboring. Does your birth place have windows that could or should be covered? Are the lights on dimmer switches or can you use a variety of light fixtures to get only as much light as you want? Can you use candles for mood lighting?

Sounds: Some women want soft or gentle music playing while they labor. Does your birth place have a way for you to play CDs or another source of music? Is there street noise or other sources of distracting background noise to interfere with the calm and quiet environment you would like?
Water: Many women find spending time in a labor tub or shower to be a great comfort measure. Does your birth place have access to a source of water for comfort? How easy will it be for you to use the tub or shower?

Positioning: The most comfortable position in labor changes from hour to hour. A good labor environment will allow you to change your position as your labor progresses. A variety of places to sit, lean and recline as well as enough room to walk or sway and the ability to get into hands and knees positions is helpful.

Privacy: Regardless of who you want to be with you in labor, you probably do not want strangers and unnecessary visitors. Consider ways your birth place has to keep your labor private. Are there doors you need to keep closed, window coverings that need to be attended to. Do you feel comfortable making noise, or do you feel the neighbors can hear you? Is there a way to make the room more private?

Fresh Air: Many women enjoy the feeling of breathing fresh air during labor. Does your labor place have a garden in which you can walk, or windows that can be opened? Are there places you can stop to get fresh air earlier in your labor, before you move to your birth place? In the absence of fresh air, do you have access to a fan to create a gentle breeze and prevent the air from feeling stale?

Aroma: Women in labor are more sensitive to smells than they usually are. Does your birth place have a smell you enjoy, or one that is uncomfortable for you? Can you use aromatherapy to improve the scent, or should you remove some items to change the aroma.

Temperature: A comfortable temperature may be warm enough for the mother to be undressed, or slightly cooler if she experiences a lot of body heat. Temperature can be one of the most difficult aspects to control because what is comfortable for the mother will probably change during labor. Does your birth place give you the ability to adjust the temperature? As a woman progresses in labor, her body will go through hot and cold flashes which can be uncomfortable. It is impossible to change the entire environment of the birth place quick enough to meet her needs. In these cases you may want to have available warm blankets, wash cloths that can be moistened with either cool or warm water, and thin sheets to provide a modesty cover in the mother overheats but does not want to be completely uncovered.

As you can see, I could go on forever with my findings...and the above is just from my favorite site! As I continue to research my desired delivery, I encourage you to do the same if you are an expectant mother as well. If you are interested in having an unmedicated birth, or if you'd just like to learn more about it, please visit

Monday, September 14, 2009

Not Me Monday!

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

I know I haven't done Not Me! Monday in awhile, but I'm feeling, ahem, guilty. Here's some stuff that did not happen in the Hingley Household this week:

- I did not nearly cry tears of joy on Tuesday when we found out that our second child is a girl. I most certainly was not afraid of having 2 boys under the age of 2, and I am not naive in thinking that it will be easier with one of each!

- I also did not eat cheese fries for dinner twice this week while on my break at Gymboree. I am not addicted to the ooey- gooey, fresh cut, cheesy goodness that is making my mouth water this very moment.

- I did not put about half my paycheck's worth of clothes on hold for my kids...NOPE, NOT ME!

- Another thing that I definitely did not do was take several 2 hour+ naps with William this week. I am not tempted to crawl in bed next to my sleeping babe and snuggle until our heart's content. I also have not been letting William take naps in our bed because it's easier that way. NOT ME!

- Furthermore, I don't have a library book that's a week overdue. I did not laugh so hard that I peed my pants last night. I am not loving this lovely fall weather. I did not continue a day trip on Monday, as planned, even though William got car sick....twice. We did not have to buy him 2 new outfits and completely air out my parent's Montero, nor did I freak out. I also did not participate in a wine tasting on the Northern Neck...I also did not enjoy it (don't freak, I probably had 3 oz. total).

Hmmm....can I think of any other things that a savvy, young, twenty-something mother wouldn't do? Nope, not me!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Mady's First Pics

I am pleased to show you our sweet Madelyn:

BT= butt TH= thigh L= girl parts!!!

H= head B= body A= arm

The results are in!

I must say, I am so proud of you all for waiting this long to find out what are sweet baby is. It sure wasn't easy for me to keep it a secret, but I didn't want to say anything until we were 100% sure. Ok, ok, enough stalling, right?? Here's the moment you've all been waiting for...





Let me say it again: we're having a healthy, normal, beautiful girl.

You guys must know you're stuff, because the majority had it! Nice going, kiddos. Even though you know what the baby is, stay tuned because I'm going to try and post the awesome pics we got. Thank you for all your support and prayers...they were definitely felt today.

Friday, September 4, 2009

You have to whaaaaat???

In the midst of my worrying about Tuesday's ultrasound, I completely forgot to mention that I had an appointment with the Infectious Disease Specialist today. The appointment went better than I had expected, but the clinic itself was much different than I had pictured. It was such a sad, pitiful setting. I guess I somehow thought that if I made my appointment at EVMS (Eastern Virginia Medical School) that I would be in a "first class" environment rather than some second hand clinic. I also neglected to realize what kind of patients would be sitting across from me in the waiting room. Today I learned more than what's going on with me. I learned that what is going on with me is far less than 99% of the rest of the patients.

I do not have AIDS.

I am not destined to be on medication for the rest of my life.

I will live.

How can I feel bad about my MRSA after sitting in a room with people who could not say the above?

Here's what else I learned today:

I actually have to be decontaminated.

The doctor prescribed me an ointment that I am supposed to swab in my nose twice daily (apparently MRSA cultivates in the nose), as well as a body wash. Yes, you read right...I have to wash with a prescription strength antimicrobial body wash. Do I feel disgusting or what?!

I have another appointment in 3 weeks where I will be reevaluated to see if any new "spots" or rashes have occurred. If not, then we have probably gotten rid of the bacteria on my skin. If I do have a spot develop, then a Sulfa antibiotic needs to be taken for a month in order to get rid of the bacteria.

My pregnancy is not considered high risk because of this.

I shouldn't have to do anything differently during delivery unless my midwives would prefer to wear additional "gear".

Well, there ya have it. Let's see how this super-duper industrial strength soap works....keep your fingers crossed!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

It's almost that time...

All right, blogees* time is running out! Only 4 more days to vote in my poll because our 20 week ultrasound is Tuesday! As we approach this scan, not only am I anxious to confirm the sex of my little Sweet Pea, but I am also anxious to find out that everything is normal and healthy with this pregnancy. We have already been through one smooth, healthy pregnancy, but reality is all to real and both Sean and I know that tragedy does strike. Please join me in prayer for healthy, normal results on Tuesday. I thank you oh so very much and so does Sweet Pea.

*Since I am a blogger, then you must be my blogees, right??

God will not forget the expectant mothers and women about to give birth. A great company will return! Tears of joy will stream down my face, and He will lead me home with great care. I will walk beside quiet streams and not stumble. (Jeremiah 31:8-9)