World Doula Week has begun

World Doula Week has begun, and I’ve been a very busy Doula.
I have:
– Helped two moms with their special deliveries
– Had an article in the newspaper
– Attended local Mom’s groups to promote Doulas
– Volunteered at the Olds Location for Central Alberta Pregnancy Care Center
– Helped Organized more Q&A’s events in Olds, and one in Red Deer.

It’s been a really good month here for me even if the weather has been sub-par. I really wish the sun would melt all the snow. I feel like I’ve accomplished much and am blazing the right trail this time in my life. I hope it continues, And Happy World Doula Week to you from Me.

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December Success

Christmas Eve, the day all the children wait for. Presents wrapped, cookies baked, gifts made and meals planned. Today we watch Christmas movies and snuggle on the couch waiting for tomorrow to arrive. Later  a supper with family close and  far and our Christmas is complete.

Surprisingly, I can say I’m ready for Christmas. After such a busy busy December I honestly don’t know how I did it all and have a cold (from which I lost my voice), and still feel ready and enjoy the day without rushing about. I even did a few last minute batches of fudge and cookies today. I managed to make 6 Christmas stockings, 5 teacher gifts, 2 grandma gifts, 7 arm knit scarfs, all the toy shopping and many many batches of cookies. Now to some of you this may be a normal year, but for me this was a big success. I have tried for many years to try and cut back Christmas buying with handmade gifts as I do have many skills if only I have the time. Well this year I MADE time and I’m very proud of what I’ve done. I think my husband is too.

But to me the real success of Christmas is sharing the spirit of Christmas with Friends and Family. The joy, laughter, giving, food and goodies and love of the season is the greatest gift of all. If you can manage to share in just a little bit of the spirit of Christmas then I think that’s the real success. We can get so caught up in the commercial part of Christmas that we forget what it’s really about. So this Christmas Eve take a moment to look around at the ones you love and share a smile, create a memory and enjoy the simple joys. Be thankful for what you have.

It’s been a very big learning year for me and this Christmas is so peaceful and pleasant, this year that is what I’m thankful for. I’ve given of myself and it fills me with peace. That is a big December success! I hope your Christmas is beautiful too, Merry Christmas everyone!

November Christmas

Yes you read that right, I wrote November, not December. It’s very snowy and chilly here and feels more like the beginning  of December and that Christmas is upon us. Although I discovered it’s not a bad thing that it feels like Christmas for it’s put me in the right mood and the planning has begun.

As I looked at my calendar this past week, and sat down with my cookie recipe book, I realized that when you have kids and family and events to go to, Christmas starts earlier every year. I’ve got Christmas gifts to make, Cookies to bake, Events to plan, Shoeboxes to pack, cards to send out, and most of that before the first week of December. So for me Christmas starts in November as both my freezer and sewing machine will believe. I’m sure there are some people who do Christmas stuff all year round, but my house is too busy for that right now. Maybe when I retire. Some of my projects will wait till the calendar flips it’s page, but I like to get ahead of the game. Even if I just have a tippy-toe in the door of a project now, I feel I’ve got a plan on how to tackle it.

So today I’m going upstairs to bake more cookies for the freezer. Plus the oven will help heat up the house. Today I’m decorating Christmas tree cookies, trying my hand at peppermint cookies, testing out a recipe and modifying a new found favorite.   I hope my husband like sugar cookies for supper, I know my daughter wont mind. LOL. No I’ll get some real food on the table too.

 

 

May Madness….

Well I can’t believe it’s the last day of May already. For our family May had been very busy both with the kids and on the Farm.

We started out the month with a few really nice days, and right away my husband was anxious to get into the field to seed, but first we had a little celebrating to do. My baby boy turned One at the beginning of May and we had a great family dinner then a beautiful afternoon in the park complete with Farm themed cake and cupcakes. I still can’t believe my baby is one years old. His birthday was a special day and he was surrounded by love which is a beautiful thing. When there are days I am feeling blue, these are the moments I need to recall; pushing the kids on the swings in the sunshine and sitting on the living room floor sharing in the giggles of a new toy.

So after his birthday the month just seemed to fly by. When the clouds would part and the sun would come out my husband disappeared into the tractor to seed barley and canola. And when he wasn’t fixing equipment there were cows to look after and fence to fix. Even though the rain slows his progress, I welcome it somedays, cause it’s the only time in spring I get to see him.

On occasion my girlfriend and I would get a run in as well, which feels really good, but I am surprised how hard it was in May to fit in just a hour a week of fitness. I think I finally have a few babysitters at my disposal now so I can be organized to get ready for the two mud runs I’ve registered for this fall. AHHHHHHHH. What am I thinking??? I’m not a runner. But I hear its great for getting a flat tummy, so sign me up baby.. LOl.

This month I also had the honour of joining a couple as a Doula for the birth of their baby girl. We also had; Playschool Field trip and Graduation for my middle Daughter, A Doula Training workshop, Hypnobabies Course which was truly amazing information, My sister-in-law planting the garden, yard work, the trampoline out, a trip to Leduc, dealing with Deanna’s dental appliance(Which is a whole other blog post)  and my son gaining his confidence in walking. Oh yes, he is walking around the house so I know he’s officially not a baby anymore, but more a toddler now.

My oh my, no wonder I felt a little silly some days, it was truly a busy month in our house. And as June begins, I look forward to a wonderful summer with friends, new babies(even a cousin for our kids, WOOT WOOT) Camping, more running and workouts and just soaking up the sunshine. Maybe a few days of sprinkler fun and swimming pools when all the kids are here. I think I would be even happier if I could get some painting projects and reno projects done too.

I hope as you look ahead into June, July and August you see Sun and Fun too.

It’s Starting.

Well at the end of this Sunday, I feel pretty good. I feel like this week was much more productive then they have been in a long time. Although my goal of getting up early everyday didn’t always happen, I managed to find a few minutes each day to accomplish a small project that I wanted to do. I’ve discovered this is very important to my emotional and mental health. I am a lists person, and when I can’t seem to get anything done on my lists, then I start to stress out. And a stressed out mom makes for a very grumpy house. And this house has been quite grumpy as of late. So I’ve started to change that, and it’s going to get better.

Each day as I give myself a few minutes to do a task or project, I feel more productive, and these tasks are not just household things, they are projects that I have been thinking of for a long time. Things like sorting family photos, working on my Doula Certification, reading a book, sewing projects, exercising and the such. They are things that engage my creativity and for me heal my soul per-say. They make me feel rejuvenated and give me energy to be the Mom and Wife I want to be. It makes me feel like I can accomplish what I set my mind to, and not just do the things necessary to get my family through the day. In a sense they remind me that I am a person with hobbies, passions and goals.

Recently I felt a little like I had lost myself, that I only had one role and was beginning to feel trapped in that role. Don’t get me wrong, being a mom is the greatest thing I’ve ever done, but with it’s challenges and not outlet for myself, I was beginning to feel sad. Then I remembered I do have things I love to do, but somehow I need to find the time to do thoses things again. If I just have a few minutes each day, I could maybe get some satisfaction knowing that I have something that is for me. And so I did just that, a few minutes each day.

What developed in the course of the week is I found myself spending more and more time working on my Certification. Research, websites, pictures, reading, all to do with my DONA Doula Certification. This passion is growing in me, and it’s starting to surface more and more. I think it about it more often, catch my self getting caught up in a blog about someones birth story, joining groups, following blogs and magazines and making contacts with people.

I knew 8 years ago after the birth of my daughter, that a spark had been lit, but I didn’t know that I would feel this passionate about birth choices, birth coaching, women’s rights and being an advocate for empowering birth experiences. I want to learn more, read more, grow my library of resources, and ultimately figure out how to someday reach my goal of becoming a Midwife. It’s a dream that is growing and one that both me and my husband are excited about.

So maybe with a little time each day, I can build a foundation for my dream, re-awaken some hobbies, get back in shape, and feel more satisfaction. I think everyone in my house will benefit from that.

Oh and if you know anyone in my area who is interested in a Doula, please let me know!

Sunday Morning

Today I got up before anyone else. On a Sunday. When I could have slept in. Why you ask? I will tell you and the answer is very simple.

I have a friend who has done this for many years, and I think I need to take a page from her book. To rise before the rest of the house, simply so that I may have a few minutes to myself. That’s it, that’s all. Just a simple selfish answer: ME time.

There is a saying, “When mom is happy, the whole family is happy”. Both my husband and I agree with this saying 100% and since the beginning of 2013, I have really felt like I’ve had no time for me. Even a few minutes can mean a world of difference. Last week when we were dealing with colds, flu, runny noses, medicines and sleepless nights, my dear husband Dean even  offered me a chance to just drive to town to get a Timmies! For my fellow rural friends, you understand what that means. You don’t just do that! It’s gas, time, wear n tear on the vehicle, and a waste of a trip to town. Even though I did not go, I fully appreciated his understanding. I was tired and stretched thin, I needed a bit of space and a few normal minutes for me.

So this is my solution. Get up before everyone else and take 15mins to do something I want to do. It can be simple as reading a book, blogging, making my fav breakfast, or a project I want to start. It has worked for others I know, and I’m hoping that if I get a few minutes for me in the beginning of the day, it will start my day off right, and make me a happy Mom.

A happy Mom, a happy husband, happy Dad, happy Deanna, happy Caitlin and hopefully a Happy Conner man! Lets test it out this week, and see how it goes. So far this Sunday morning has been very productive and I feel pretty good. So that is a great start.

Enjoy your Sunday Morning, I already have!!

Christmas 2012

Well I finally feel like it’s  Christmas time. The Tree is up, the carols are playing in the background, Christmas gifts are being wrapped, and Family gatherings have begun. This past weekend we spent two wonderful days with family. Good food, good people,good news and great memories.

As I have gotten older, I really cherish that part of Christmas. The gathering’s, the family traditions, the giving. Yes, I really enjoy finding a great gift and giving more then receiving. I am in the process of trying to teach my eldest daughter just that. And I am also learning that giving does not mean spending lots of money. Sometimes a simple homemade gift or baking is just as nice, if not better, cause it was made with love.  Giving of our time is also a wonderful thing, like some of my family did last week. We helped sort Shoeboxes at the Wearhouse in Calgary for Samaritan’s Purse. Giving our time to this charity felt wonderful, it certainly helped put me in the Christmas mood.

This Christmas will be a first for our baby boy, so that’s always exciting. This year we get to share the joy with our growing family and Christmas with kids is very joyful. It’s the joy in their eyes I look forward to on Christmas morning. Being able to spend the day with my Family, just like I did with my own family as a kid,  means so much to me and this year is special again. I hope that I can pass on the importance of family to my own children.

Now I’ll admit that this time of year brings some stress too. Busy-ness, Sickness, Finances, End of the year just to name a few. Busy-nes; Trying to fit everything in, visiting and shopping, baking, decorating etc… can get a bit hectic. So trying to slow things down and enjoy the moments helps. This year for us seems more relaxed and I will enjoy that I think. It will allow us to think about what Christmas is really all about and try to bring that out more. Sickness; Winter is flu season, and our house has had it twice. It’s hard to get things done when you are tired and cant stop sneezing from that silly cold. My Poor Husband.  Finances; I don’t think I need to say much about this one, but that every year I try to spend less on gifts. Still it can be a stressful time on your bank account. End of Year; Christmas means the year is almost done, and a new one around the corner. Sometimes that is good, sometimes it is bad. I lately have been thinking about all the things that didn’t get done this year, and how nice it would be to do one more project before 2013 rolls around. Oh well, so instead I’ll focus on Christmas 2012. For the next two weeks, I’m going to go easy on my self, do what I can, and just enjoy what the season has to bring.  Family Dinners, visit’s with friends, parties and Christmas Concerts. It’s going to be a wonderful Christmas season.

Plus, I’ve perfected my crockpot yam recipe, and my mom has requested it for Family Christmas. That’s really neat. Boy I’ve come along way this year. Here’s to a Merry Christmas to everyone and to growth and Joy in 2013.  May God bless your home and your heart. From all of Us here at the Duquette house.