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Amazing guest Dada
My bff LaDonna. A surrogate mom! I love her!!
Christy’s Birth of A Son
Our third birth was by far my easiest and fastest labor, and my favorite birth. Since our older boys were overdue, one by a week and one by 2 days, I figured this one would be late, too. I had a thought about this one coming a week early, but I must have forgotten that because I decided to replace my bathroom floor the week before he was due. My nesting instinct always seems to manifest itself in major home repairs. Our floor was rotted and we had a sewer smell at times. The smell got really bad, and I did not want to be in labor with that nasty odor.
I was planning a homebirth like I had with my last son. About ten days before my "due date," we took out the sink and toilet, and I spent the next couple of days ripping out the old floor and rotten wood. We live in an old house, and with each pregnancy I was doing lots of major renovations.
On Monday morning, (all my labors started on Mondays), I went to Lowe's to buy new wood. While there, I began to have back pains. Although they were mild, I had not previously had back pains. All my braxton-hicks contractions were always just in my belly. I even cried a little, hoping I wasn't going into labor at Lowe's. I was there about an hour and a half and had to ask questions of various salespeople about our project. I was really distracted trying to talk to these people, and when I finally checked out, I tried to give the cashier both cash and a debit card. I told her I was sorry, and that I had a lot on my mind.
I went home and carried my wood up my 38 steps, and then asked my husband, Matt, if he thought he would have cell phone service where he would be working that day. I told him I didn't think I was in labor, but I kept having these back pains. I told him several times to go on to work as I didn't think it was labor.
Actually, I was in denial. He knew I was in labor before I did. He said he could see it in my eyes. He stayed home and began urgently cutting boards for the floor, which is what I had planned to do that day. I remembered the acupressure points for labor I had found on the internet and decided to try them just in case I was really in labor. The first points I saw were for hastening labor. Since I did not want to be in labor, I passed on those and found some for pain relief. I was not in much pain, but I began to press on those points every time I had a back pain. The back pains kept coming, but I kept hoping I was not in labor. I did really like those points though. They made the back pains really short and they never got very painful. I was way too busy to try and time them.
I cooked breakfast and helped Matt with the floor, even going under the house through a hole in the floor to help hold some boards. The whole time, I just kept holding the points for the pains, which kept coming. I began to think maybe I was in labor and was not sure what to do. We were so unprepared to have a baby that day. We had no bathroom, the house was in shambles, the kids were sick, and I had not been to the store and was out of many basic food items. There was so much to do. The nest was not ready!
I asked Matt if I should clean or work on the floor. He said clean. I wandered from room to room, not knowing what was more important, the kitchen, bedroom, laundry? I decided to make our bed and sweep our bedroom floor as I was planning to fill a pool with water for labor, and I planned to put the pool in our bedroom. I then got out the pool and began to fill it with air. I kept thinking I wished it was already filled with water as I'd really like to get in! Our boys were so excited that I was inflating a swimming pool in the house, and kept chattering and peppering me with questions. I finally managed to get the thing blown up, and told our son to tell Dad to bring in the hose to fill the pool. I didn't feel capable of getting the hose from outside and hooking it up by that point.
I felt like things were moving fast. Matt took a break from the floor to get the hose, and he hooked it up and began filling the pool. He wanted to call his dad to come help him with the floor, but I told him I didn't care about the floor right now! I had to throw up, which I did in both my previous labors. I went outside and threw up, and then came back in. Matt asked if he should call our midwife, Angy, and I said yes. He had asked me earlier, but I had said no. She laughed and said she was an hour away and probably wouldn't make it, but we knew what to do. I managed to brush my teeth and felt like I had to poop.
I got our temporary toilet, which was a five gallon bucket with our toilet seat on top, and a garbage bag and newspapers inside. I set it in my bedroom by the pool, and sat down on it. My water broke and I felt the baby moving down. I told Matt to bring me the coconut oil, then a spoon to dig it out, which I then rubbed on myself to help avoid tears. Just like my second birth, I had three contractions as the baby came down with no effort or pushing on my part. On the third one, our new son was born! Matt caught the baby wearing his work boots and covered in pressure treated sawdust. We had not even washed our hands as we had no idea the baby would come so fast. He got a bulb syringe from the closet (not new or sterilized, of course) and sucked out his nose and mouth, and a bath towel, which we covered him with as he lay on my lap. I told Matt he could turn the water off now! We called Angy and our parents to share our good news.
We were shocked. I had only realized I was in labor maybe an hour or so prior, and there we were with a baby! He let out a little cry just after he came out, and then just looked at us. He also nursed, peed, and pooped.
Our six year old went outside when I sat down on the bucket, but our two year old stood there and watched the birth. He got a little scared from all the blood, but we told him I was fine, and he got in the pool to play. Then our oldest, who had been outside whooping like an Indian, came in and got in the pool. Matt boiled some scissors and string, and after the placenta came out, he cut and tied off the cord. There probably wasn't much point in sterilizing anything by this time, though. Then, I got off the bucket and got in the pool with the baby, after having the boys get out, to get cleaned up. The water felt wonderful, and the baby really seemed to like the nice, warm water. At least I got to use the pool for something!
The midwives showed up about the time I was getting in the pool, which was about 45 minutes or so after the birth. I was glad it worked out that way. I had told Angy previously that I might not call anyone until after the birth. I had been reading a lot about unassisted birth and really liked the idea of an intimate family birth.
Our little guy weighed 7 pounds and 4 ounces and was 21 inches long. I only had a tiny tear, more like a scrape, and didn't need any stitches. I never had any long contractions and they never got very painful. I had natural childbirth with the other boys, so I know what those long, painful contractions are like. Now, I tell pregnant women about those acupressure points! I found them at http://www.childbirthsolutions.com/articles/birth/acupressure/index.php.
Even though I wanted him to come later so I could get the bathroom done and go to the store and have the house nice and clean, we were so thankful it all happened the way it did. We still kept working on the house, only with a new, sweet little baby in it!
Tag: unassisted home birth, home birth stories, unassisted birth stories, natural birth stories, positive birth stories, easy labor stories, natural childbirth stories, unassisted natural child birth stories, hombirth stories, birth stories, Birth stories on demand, unassisted labor and delivery
**information about Dada's friend at the bottom of this page**
Rachel’s Birth of Levi
Mommy wanted to share with you the story of how you entered into this world. You caused quite a stir!
Well my little man, lets start at the beginning. We had been seeing the midwives at the Greenhouse Birth center for all of our prenatal care. Around our 30 week visit the midwives felt to see which way you were laying in mommy's tummy. You were head down and all was well. When we went back in for our next visit, they said that it felt like you had turned and were butt down...(Mommy thought: 'my little monster...You’re going to be quite the trouble maker aren’t you?') At that point it was not a huge deal, and we just had to wait and see what happened. As the weeks went by it didn't feel like your little butt was going to move anywhere. Around 35 weeks mommy decided to start seeing a chiropractor. Thinking that maybe if we lined up all the bones in my pelvis the way they belonged, and loosened the muscles on my uterus it would give you enough room to turn and settle into the right position. So I started seeing them 3 times a week! They are wonderful and I absolutely love them! But despite all our best efforts you still wouldn't move...
Tuesday September 15th 2009, I woke up to signs of labor. I had laid in bed watching a movie with your big brother Ayden. When the movie was over I got up to use the bathroom, and had a good amount of fluid leak when I stood up. I wondered if maybe there was a leak in the amniotic sac so I called the birth center. It was a busy morning there! Mitzi answered the phone and said she would have Clarice call back because there were two moms in labor and close to pushing. So mommy waited. While waiting to hear back from Clarice I had a little spotting so I took note of it and what time it was so I would remember to tell her. I had a feeling that something was different, and I began to put the house together thinking we could be in for a long day. Clarice called back about an hour later and told me that she would like to see me to see if it was my water that broke or if it was something else. So mommy called daddy and told him what was going on. We decided that I would pick him up from work on my way to the birth center, and then we would go to lunch after we saw Clarice. Mommy got big brother dressed and packed him into the car for the ride. Once we got there Clarice did what’s called a Ferning test, and it was negative, so it seemed that we had bypassed that for the time being. She checked to see if I was dilated, she said I was a 3 and stretchy, but my cervix was still thick. There was thought that maybe it was the start of early labor, but we didn't know for sure.
While we were at the birth center, we discussed our options for delivery with Clarice. She asked me "what scares you more? Having a baby breech, or having a cesarean?" My response was that the c-section was more scary! (I am terrified of needles, and of major surgeries!) So she told us what we were looking at if we wanted to try a natural birth...we learned that if you were frank breech, like we thought you were, that it would be the safest way to even try having a natural delivery. She told us that it was the safest way because there was less chance of a prolapsed cord...but that if you were to come feet first that it was the most risky. I knew that I wanted to do what was safest for both you and I. So we decided to set up an ultrasound to see what position you were in for sure! They were on lunch, so Mitzi said she would call us when she knew what they had open.
We left and found a place to eat. A couple minutes after we sat down Mitzi called and said that they only had a 2 o'clock open that day and that it was the only opening all week. So we took it, and had to skip out on lunch. At the ultrasound, the technician said you were butt down. Mommy was so happy to hear that, it meant that I would at least be able to try a vaginal delivery! Clarice had told us that if we decided to attempt a normal delivery, things would have to move along smoothly and I would have to continue dilating at a decent pace. We knew that if we had any hiccups during labor it would mean a transfer and a c-section. But going off what the tech had told us, I knew that I wanted to try it and that if I had to admit defeat later that I would!
I had been having some contractions over the course of the day, but nothing that screamed labor. Just different than the normal toning contractions. We went to Target and got some newborn diapers for you since mommy had been forgetting to buy them and some disposables for big brother so that we wouldn't have to worry about washing our cloth the first few weeks after you were born. (Daddy bought the new Wolverine movie-it came out that day...) Then, daddy and I decided to take Ayden out to the Ukai restaurant on Saginaw and have dinner together since we hadn't got a chance to share lunch. During dinner, mommy started having some contractions that were more uncomfortable. I kept telling daddy that I just wanted to get up and walk. When we left from dinner, mommy made daddy go to Kroger and get some granola and vanilla yogurt because I was craving a parfait. I waited in the car with your big brother while he ran in. while he was inside, I had a couple contractions that just about took my breath away. But I still thought that it was nothing.
When we got home it was about 9:30-10:00pm. We got Ayden all tucked into bed, and we laid down in our room and started the new movie daddy had bought. Mommy only laid there for about 5 minutes before I had to get up and move. I started pacing the hallway, and then ended up in the dining room leaning over a chair... I was getting to where I was so uncomfortable that I needed to focus and told daddy not to talk to me. I decided a nice bath and beer were what I needed to calm down the contractions...(we were still 3 weeks from your due date, and I had so much false labor with your brother that I was still thinking that it was all in my head.) While I was in the tub I called your Nana (my mom) because she had told me earlier in the day to call her later, but I had forgotten until then...so I talked to your Nana for a little while, while I was in the tub having contractions. I didn't even tell her that I was having any. :) (It was around 10:40pm) I look back at that now and wonder why I didn't mention it...
Around 1am I felt that I needed to urinate, so I got out of the tub and sat on the toilet. I soon discovered that I would not be getting up! I was most comfortable sitting there. I finally decided that it was real labor and told daddy to call the midwife. I called my dad and told him that I needed him to come up and watch your brother so we could go to the birth center. Papa lives about 45 minutes away, and we thought that we had enough time...but after a short while Darrel called our neighbor Sonny to stay with Ayden until my dad got here so that we could leave for the birth center. By the time she got to our house, only about 10 minutes later I couldn't stand up...when I tried it felt like you were going to fall right out of me...daddy got back on the phone with Clarice, and told her that I couldn't get up and we were not going to make the move. Clarice said that she would head over, and as daddy was giving her directions to the house, I started to feel like I needed to push, so I did and my water broke. I was still in disbelief that I was even in labor, so as I was sitting there laughing I called out to your daddy "that was my water!" He was still on the phone with Clarice and told her that my water had broke. (She told me later that when daddy told her that, she knew she was not going to make it.) Your papa got there a couple minutes later to sit with your brother who had been wide awake since about 1:30am. We asked sonny to stay and direct the midwives to us when they got there.
Mommy contractions stopped for a few minutes after the water broke. Oddly enough, I got on the phone with your Nana and told her what had happened. I started to have a contraction when I was talking to her, and told her "I'm gonna have to call you back" I yelled for daddy to come grab some towels and I started pushing...after only a few seconds of pushing daddy said "oh crap, it’s a foot." This is the point at which mommy started to freak out! I was in tears thinking that I was going to hurt you...I told daddy "what do I do? I don't wanna keep pushing and hurt him" because at this point we only had your left leg out up to the thigh, and I kept thinking that your other foot was caught up higher and I was afraid that if i kept pushing it would hurt you. Daddy told me "Just do what you have to do, and we will figure it out" I am so proud of daddy for being so calm and pulling me back together! I told your daddy that I had to find your other foot, so I started feeling around for it and found it wedged up behind your left leg...I was able to wiggle it down, but then we noticed that your legs were all tied up in your cord. I told daddy "we have to get him untangled" but of course he was a step ahead of me and already working on it. at this point all that was running through my head was 'I have to get him out NOW his cord is compressed and he isn't getting enough oxygen' so I kept pushing with all my might...even when I wasn't having contractions. You came flying out into daddy's loving arms within 5 minutes of us seeing your foot. It was 2:30am on September 16th 2009. You were born in transition from squatting over the toilet to squatting on the floor. Your cord was short, and you barely reached my belly. You did not cry right away, and mommy cried as she rubbed you and kept telling you it was ok, and that you could cry now. You let out a good wail within a minute. At which point my tears went from tears of sheer terror to tears of absolute ecstasy!
Clarice and Audra arrived within 5-10 minutes of your arrival to this world. I was sad that they had missed the whole thing, because it was quite an experience, but I was so grateful that they were there to help us finish everything. Audra was a life saver! She cleaned up the mess that we had created in the bathroom, so I had one less thing to worry about!!! Clarice and Daddy took you into our bedroom while Audra helped deliver the placenta. I got cleaned up a bit and into bed. Clarice checked you over and measured you 19 inches. Audra did the official weigh in...6lbs 2oz. You were perfect! Clarice asked us to take you into the pediatrician that morning when they opened to have you looked over. Your abdominal muscles have now grown together, and she wanted to have them make sure it was not a hernia. (Clarice got the ultrasound results back the next day. It said footling breech. I am happy that it all turned out well, but if I had known I would have went right to the hospital at ANY sign of labor.)
So no one slept that night, and as soon as the pediatrician’s office opened we called and got an appointment. Daddy's uncle Tim is your doctor. His office is in Jackson so it is a bit of a drive, but we feel that it is worth it. He checked you blood sugars and hemoglobin by finger prick and the blood sugar was fine, but the hemoglobin was higher than he would have liked to see. He sent us over to the special care unit at Allegiance Health there in Jackson. He wanted to have a vain draw done and oxygen levels checked. Mom was very upset and emotional at the whole idea, especially after he told us that if the hemoglobin was as high as it was with the finger prick that they would probably admit you. I cried most of the time we were there, and sobbed when they took you blood, you were screaming so hard. We were very fortunate that everything looked ok and we got to go home.
Uncle Tim asked us to come back the next day because he wanted to look at a few other things. That evening as I sat and looked at you I told your daddy "He looks like a baby with Downs Syndrome" I am not sure why I thought that other than that your face reminded me of children with it. I figured maybe you were just puffy and it would go away. The next day at the doctor’s office, Uncle Tim told your daddy that he wanted to test you for Downs...We had not said a word about even thinking it so it did catch us off guard. Once again you went back to the hospital for another vain draw. Your billiruben levels were pretty high too, and so they sent us home with a Billi-Blanket . We were told that it would take 4-5 days to get your results back from the chromosome count...so in the mean time I cried, I cried a lot!
Day 7: The results were in...Your test came back positive...The results took me to the floor. I did not expect to fall like that, I couldn't even stand up. I held you and sobbed, I shook uncontrollably. I felt like screaming at the world. How could this happen to us? Why me? Why you? It felt like someone took a part of you away. A part of you that I had longed to meet but never will.
Day 11 (today- September 27th 2009): I still feel like I am on the floor. I still cry often. I still feel that someone took away that perfect child that I had longed to meet. I know now that I will never get to meet your children (unless you adopt)...You will never be valedictorian, or captain of the football team. But you know what my sweet angel, none of that matters now. I can’t wait to see just who you will grow up to be. Or what you will do with your special gifts. I know that you will bring us much joy in the years to come, and that your love is going to make so many people happy. I hope your brother can understand that you are just like anyone else, but you’re a little more special, and that’s why God gave you to us.
With all of my love
Tags Midwife, breech, footling breech, Franck breech, home birth, down's syndrome, birth stories on demand, Rachel's labor story, home birth story, unintentional home birth, unmedicated, natural birth
My bff Tracy the mom of Twins!
Sonja’s Birth of Tara
My water broke at about 12:30 a.m. on December 3rd in a rather uneventful "Blurp" while I was surfing the web in a fit of insomnia. I soon after went to bed and had crampy contrax during the night. They remained far apart throughout the night, which was not uncommon for me in my prior experience with two previous births. This was my third baby and knew I was in for the long haul. We got up in the morning and went shopping for some last minute items (like a car seat to bring the baby home from the hospital in) and went out for lunch. We came home at about 1:15 p.m. and I realized that I had forgotten my purse at the restaurant across town, so I sent DH back to get it (a 45 minute round trip) and went up to take a nap. Contrax were still far apart, but getting stronger, so I got up at about 3:30 p.m. and wandered around the house for a little while, but I was well in control of the surges, so I didn't think much of it.
Our intention was to stay home as long as possible (to 7-8 cm), then go to the hospital. Our friend Kath, who is a PA, planned to come over to check my dialation to make sure we didn't go to the hospital too soon. I got into the bathtub at about 4:00-4:30 to get some relief and relax, which work REALLY well. As it got darker and darker, I lost track of time in my water womb and by 6:20 (when DH and roommate were ordering pizza for the kids) I was really rolling and ready to call our friend to come over and check me. At one point I felt nauseous, but didn't throw up (THAT should have been my sign that it was time to go) and I continued to re-heat and sit in the water laboring alone in the dark.
It took some time to track Kath down and by 6:45 p.m. when DH finally found her, I had gone into transition and was very deep into myself. She asked if I was feverish (no) or cold (sort of...half my big old body was out of the water), or if I was feeling pushy (now that you mention it...). She didn't have latex gloves, so she was planning to stop at the store and get some on her way over, so DH thought she would be about 15 minutes. I instinctively knew it was probably too late, but humored him and got out of the tub to try and get ready to go to the hospital. DH threw the keys to our roommate and ordered him to get the kids in the car and got me to the bedroom. He tried in vain to put some pants on me for several minutes. Then I got the urge to push and knew we were not going to make it to the hospital. So I half squatted through a couple of surges (with Josh still trying to dress me) and I could feel the baby descending, so I got on hands and knees on the bed and she there she crowned.
In walked our friend (with her sterile gloves and a new bulb syringe and nothing else) at about 7:04 p.m. and was like "oh crap!" and called our friend Dawn, (a lapsed midwife-in-training) and was hollering "get your butt over here, the baby is crowning". And I burst out laughing. I should note here that neither of them has assisted in a birth in about 4 years (my son was the last one Dawn attended as my homebirth doula). Kath asked if she should call an ambulance, but I said "no" (they would not have made it anyway). So instead she helped support my leg and I pushed baby out in about 3 good hard pushes (though it felt like she sat crowning FOREVER). Baby landed with an unceremonious "plop" into Josh's hands and onto the bed. Baby took a few seconds to pink up and cry, which made Kath nervous but we got her going and Kath used her bulb syringe to clear the goop (which she didn't even know why she brought...it came in handy :) ).
Dawn came running in with her birth kit about 5 minutes later (running all the red lights in the 1.5 miles in between our houses). She got to help me deliver the placenta, which was intact and healthy. We had no blankets ready, so baby went on me and was wrapped in one of my old nightgowns until Josh could go down into the basement and find the bin with the baby blankets. Luckily we had just done a load of towels, so a few went under me and over the baby, as we had no Chux pads (though there was a waterproof pad on the bed, so it was protected) and we all rested for a moment.
MEANWHILE, the kids are still sitting in the car with our roommate, wondering where the heck we are and getting cold (it was December after all). So they were called and came back in and ds#2 came and watched the cord get cut, to his utter delight. My friends stayed about 2.5 hours to make sure we were both stable and change my bed sheets and then they went home (or more likely, out for a stiff drink) totally high from the experience.
All in all it was a WONDERFUL night and experience and I could not have asked for more. I only hope that my friends viewed it the same way once they are off their high.
And super cudos have to go to DH for being calm and collected through the whole experience. We had talked about having an UC, but he had not felt comfortable that he would know what to do once the baby was born, so I had agreed to either a midwife assisted HB or a hospital birth. For a variety of reasons, the midwife assisted plan did not come to fruition, and we planned a hospital visit with our FP doctor "catching". Once Josh realized that this birth was an inevitability he got right in there and did what he needed to do, with calm and collection. Two thumbs up! And by the time all was said and done, we opted to just stay in and cuddle up for the night. We called our FP in the morning and gave her the news and she said "Great! Come see me on Monday." Ah, bliss...
Tara E. was born on Friday, December 3rd at 7:07 (we think) in an unintentioned (and almost UC-unassisted childbirth) homebirth.
Tags: home birth, home birth stories, homebirth stories, unmedicated birth stories, natural birth stories, positive birth stories, accidental home birth, unintentional home birth stories, home childbirth stories, natural childbirth stories, birth stories, happy birth stories
** Dada's Friend is Anne. I sent her a message. The following is our correspondence:
I'm a friend of Dada and she told me that you have had a bleak diagnosis of a cranial defect for your unborn baby.
First let me tell you, I am so damn sorry. As I said on my show the other day: Motherhood can be brutal on mothers. Profound right? Well, I'm blonde so it won't get much deeper than that ; )
I want to offer my friendship to you and any help I can be for you. I took a peek at your blog. You have a child with autism? I have an 11 year old daughter with autism. She isn't high functioning but she is higher functioning than Charlie Sheen.
Have you lost a child? I couldn't tell exactly by your blog. Would you mind taking a minute and plunking out your life details for me? I'll spend more time on your blog in the upcoming days.
I have a lot of mothers on my page so please let me know if I can ask them anything for you.
Can you tell me the name of the condition that affecting your baby?
I'm going to get the show with Dada up TODAY (God willing) and I would like to include a link to your blog and a link to a wiki about the condition. Would that be alright? When the show goes out there will be people who want to pray for you and get to know you better. Let me know if you're comfortable with that. I won't include anything until I have your permission.
I hope to hear from you soon Anne ♥
Motherhood really *can* be brutal, especially when when we moms take so much of the blame on ourselves whether we deserve it or not (and more often we do not).
I have two children on the spectrum. My 13 year old has Asperger's and to those who don't know what it looks like, he'd just seem a bit quirky and awkward. My 5 year old son also has ASD and is high functioning in some ways and so delayed in others. His communication is especially poor and I'm anxious about him starting Kindergarten next year.
I lost a child 6 years ago. She was born at 22 weeks with a condition called Holoprosencephaly which is where the brain fails to divide properly. She also had a number of other issues which made it impossible for her to live. If you click on Losing Sarah in my Labels section, it will offer up all the posts from that time. I've been blogging for over 7 years, so I have a lot covered!
My son Liam, who is due in July, has a condition called Encephalocele. It's a neural tube defect like Spina Bifida, except that, instead of the neural tube not closing at the bottom and affecting the spine, the tube doesn't close toward the top. This leaves a hole in the skull through which the brain protrudes.
Thankfully for my son, he has no chromosomal abnormalities, no other physical abnormalities, and it seems that his 'cele is filled primarily with fluid and meninges (the covering around the brain). There's very little brain involvement and the pediatric neurosurgeon feels confident that this can be surgically corrected, and that he may have no neurological deficits. We're thrilled with the prognosis, but still cautious and certainly scared.
The statistics for Encephalocele are staggering. Only 1 in 5 make it to birth, and 55% of those babies don't live long after birth. Our son, while being the 1-4/10,000 to get this diagnosis, is in a rare minority to have a real chance at life. Maybe even a normal life.
Still, while I know that while my chances are good that I will have a baby to take home, I feel that much has been stripped from me. From my ability to have a vaginal birth (All these kids and I've never had a c-section) to my peace of mind.
Feel free to include whatever you'd like in your show. There are a lot of us out there who often feel that we have few we can talk to. The idea of pre-natal and infant loss is so hard for many to discuss. But we're out here, with empty arms and aching hearts. We're walking around, some of us still afraid of babies and pregnant women, some going through a pregnancy or birth after a loss and scared to death. All of us with a hole where a child should be. And we need the support of other moms.
Peace to you,
Visit Anne's blog: