Tuesday, December 24, 2013

{51}: making lists, wrapping gifts


"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week in 2013."

On the Range
December 17 - 23, 2013


{On the Range} is my weekly series where I discuss what we're doing, reading, and eating. It's a little bit 52 project and other photo projects, and a little bit {Did you Read?} and {In the Ranger Kitchen}.

My week...

  • Hustling and bustling to get ready for Christmas! We paused to watch The Sound of Music in two parts of the last few mornings. I wonder if that will become a new tradition for us. At one point, Charlie said wistfully, "I wish I was a child of Maria's." Oh well, gee, thanks a lot kiddo. But really, who doesn't wish that?

Monday, December 23, 2013

...in which Pooh goes hunting for trolls and finds some

Yesterday I suddenly remembered I had never gone on Facebook to read the comments about my article on Natural Parents Network. The new thing seems to be to comment on Facebook instead of directly on a blog, presumably because there are no comment moderators to delete whatever nutty thing they feel like saying. Indeed, moderation is not a word one would routinely ascribe to the Facebook medium.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

shiny happy people

Jack Sprat & Wife

"Shiny happy people!" was my aunt's comment on this picture I posted after Nate's work holiday party. And we were! On a night of three mixed drinks, I will always be shiny and happy. Plus, the conversation and hors d'oeuvres were plentiful, making the trifecta of a perfect evening complete. I would love to tell you more details about the conversations, but like I said, three drinks.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

{50}: risky business


"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week in 2013."

On the Range
December 10 - 16, 2013

{On the Range} is my weekly series where I discuss what we're doing, reading, and eating. It's a little bit 52 project and other photo projects, and a little bit {Did you Read?} and {In the Ranger Kitchen}.

My week...

  • We went sledding after the first snow, which surprised some friends given the inch of ice we got on top of the six inches of snow. It made for interesting sledding....or you could replace "interesting" with "incredibly fast, probably dangerous, and definitely messy." At one point Vivi and I were standing at the bottom of the first of two slopes watching Nate go down with Charlie, waving as they passed. We barely had time to turn around again when an out-of-control sled manned only by a young boy hit Vivi at full-speed, sweeping her off her feet and flipping her fully over him and onto her stomach. She cried for a brief minute and then was ready to go. I'll tell ya', these New England winters make for tough kids; they aren't for the faint of heart.

Monday, December 16, 2013

capturing health information in a changing world


Ever since I started graduate school in 2006, I have tracked the development of health information (HI) technology. At that time, the top story in the field of HI was about the rapid and effective response of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to Hurricane Katrina. Unlike other citizens, veterans were able to maintain their health records, prescriptions, and test results, despite having to evacuate the Gulf Coast for surrounding areas, often even to other states.

Seven years later, health informatics is a changing field, and most of us are now familiar with the concept of pharmacy and laboratory computerization for our prescriptions and test results to sync with our charts at doctors' offices. Now there are many stories of advancement, from local health departments around the country attempting to sync data with hospitals and the CDC to help epidemiologists track disease development, to advancements in the rest of the country's electronic medical records (EMR) such as those in the Hurricane Katrina story.

With the many improvements in health care technology comes a responsibility for updated education if you aim to work in the field, as I do. I took a health informatics course in graduate school and was fascinated with the field and all that is required to be knowledgeable in the subject. While I maintained general knowledge on the subject during my time in the field of public health, I am interested in increasing that knowledge upon my return to the field from my time as a mother and birth doula.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

{49}: I already have one


"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week in 2013."

On the Range
December 3 - 9, 2013


{On the Range} is my weekly series where I discuss what we're doing, reading, and eating. It's a little bit 52 project and other photo projects, and a little bit {Did you Read?} and {In the Ranger Kitchen}.

My week...
  • The photo above is blurry, but it perfectly captures the "Christmas Story" mood that was my experience of getting Charlie dressed to walk to town in the snow.
  • I'm late submitting this weekly post because I forgot about it. It's amazing that I've gotten to this point (49 weeks!) and only just forgotten one. I plan to finish the year out strong so I can count this project done. :)
  • I'm calling this post "I already have one" because it's my new short mantra that keeps me from spending too much this month. Even if it's not true, it's working. Boot tray? Already got one (we don't, but we have a mudroom). Earrings that go fabulously well with my new holiday party dress? Already have 'em (I don't, but I hope to borrow some).

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

in spaces between

Me (center) and my cousins, July 1997

In the summer of 1997, I was in between my junior and senior years of high school, and I was invincible. Like most privileged kids at that time in the suburbs of Atlanta, I drove a beat-up Volvo station wagon, my bulletproof tank. The car represented my freedom from oppression, whatever that can mean to a girl who doesn’t even have to supply her own gas money. That my muffler was held intact with a coat hanger didn’t matter; I was part of the crowd. Like Billy Joe Armstrong was hoping when he penned the song that is now a part of every highlight reel, I was having the time of my life. Graduation was barreling forward in just a year, and I was experiencing each moment with instant nostalgia and intense feeling.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

marital shorthand

That thing where you can have an entire conversation with your spouse using mostly monosyllabic sounds...

Nate: Gah.
Me: What?
Him: Nothing.
Me: Oh, that?
Him: Yeah.
Me: Mmmm.
Him: Ugh.
Me: I know, yikes.

*****************

This morning the kids were driving me nuts while I was trying to make their breakfast, and I ended up accidentally grabbing the wrong bottle to sprinkle on their oatmeal. I was running late as it was and didn't have time to make new oatmeal. Spousal levity is a great method of diffusing these moments.


Monday, December 09, 2013

my pursuit of nursing: back to the books



I used to believe my life needed to be balanced. But for as long as I can recall, this goal has been difficult if not impossible to achieve. I remember days in graduate school where I would leave the house at 6am and not return until 10pm, and in that time I would have studied while I rode the train to the city, crammed down a quick breakfast at my pre-dawn desk, worked a full time job, raced to crew practice to coach nine lively 14-year-old girls, and attended night school. I laugh when I consider the load I had to tote with me--books, a change of clothes, and three meals!

Saturday, December 07, 2013

the shadows of things that may be


This little light o' mine. My latest thrift shop find. Ain't it grand?

This morning my eyes popped open at 7:00am on the nose. My brain keeps orderly internal time, though I dunno why, given that I haven't had a job to wake up for as long as little sister has been with us. I have no one to impress with that little anecdote except you, Reader.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

{48}: trimming and retrimming the tree


"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week in 2013."

On the Range
November 26 - December 2, 2013


{On the Range} is my weekly series where I discuss what we're doing, reading, and eating. It's a little bit 52 project and other photo projects, and a little bit {Did you Read?} and {In the Ranger Kitchen}.


My week...
  • Thanksgiving was a great break! I am still stuffed.
  • We got a tree on Saturday and trimmed it right away (see pic above), and now it appears it was already on its way out of this world, so we'll be detrimming its ugly brown needle-raining self this afternoon to take back to the garden center. I can only imagine that my spell check doesn't consider "detrimming" a word because this is not how nature is supposed to work--or, not yet anyway. But lo, here we are.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

#givingtuesday

giving tuesday
Giving Tuesday was created as a way to balance all of the spending happening on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation made a list of their four favorite places to give donations. Consider using social media to spread the word (@GivingTues and #GivingTuesday for those on Twitter).

We plan to give our annual contributions to WBUR, Mass Audubon, and our annual rotating donation to promote girls' education (this year we chose the Malala Fund). What's your favorite charity? Leave it as a link in the comments to give everyone as many choices today as possible.

Image credit: Huff Po.

Monday, December 02, 2013

joie de Vivi

"Oh how I love cake!"

I just went back and read this post about Vivi. If there's one thing I'd tell that version of myself from six months ago, it'd be not to worry so much about kindergarten. Vivi seems to be enjoying herself and staying out of trouble. On the day I visited, she excelled at the tasks given to her, from leading a small group to writing sentences (she balked at the teacher's request that she complete two sentences, but she did it). I say "leading a small group," but it primarily involved her bossing around other kids while reenacting a scene from a book they had just read, and she ate up every moment, bless her.

She has many friends and loves life, so thus far I am able to report that school has not yet squashed her spirit. It's all good. Oh, and don't get me started on school lunch, which she ADORES. If I would let her buy lunch every day, she'd be happy as a pig in a poke, but we'd be $60 broker per month. For now I let her buy once a week, and she typically chooses either pizza, hot dog, or soft pretzel/yogurt. Her cafeteria routinely serves veggies like green salads and mashed sweet potatoes too, so I have mostly praise to give them on that front.

Vivi still asks more questions than I thought humanly possible. I'm considering getting her this book for Christmas as much for my assistance as for her edification. Nate gets into the answering of the questions with patience and good humor, and I try to use his example as my guide. Oh my goodness, the girl just wants to know. Here she is watching football with her daddy. In this clip, she's asking him about a football player whose name is Ball:

video

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