Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Paycheck Prattle: Working Mom Wednesday

Today's Working Mom Wednesday prompts are just right on target for me, because work has definitely felt overwhelming recently. A key colleague who has worked with me for the past two years told me that she would be resigning last week--effective this week. Yeah, not a lot of turnaround time. So, my job of trying to work with hospitals, health departments, occupational health nurses, lay health advisors, and community health advocates in (officially) 22 counties has now expanded to (unofficially) covering 30 counties...with no one to collaborate with directly for who knows how long (until they find a replacement). Ahhhhhhhh!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Wife, M.D.: news & TV


Latest Netflix-instant addiction: TV show, Doc Martin. Loving it. Gruff British surgeon becomes a small-town GP after developing a phobia to blood. I love all the supporting actors and stories. I'm currently watching episodes from the third season each night after work.

  • NPR: Hospitals Lure Doctors Away From Private Practice (will my Dr. hubby work in a private practice or a hospital when he's out of residency?)

  • Mr. or Ms. vs Dr. (mental floss: In England, Australia, and New Zealand they call surgeons "Mr./Ms." rather than "Dr." in a form of reverse snobbery)

  • Health Group Asks for Lower Salt Limits (relates to my job work in heart disease & stroke prevention)

  • Panel Calls for Lower Gestational Diabetes Cutoffs (As a recently preggo woman who was adamant about having a natural birth, those things that might up pregnancy risk categories, like GD classification cutoffs, are of interest...)

  • Excess Stroke, MI, and Death Seen with Carotid Stenting (relates to my job work)

  • Neonatal Jaundice Linked to Autism (what neonates don't get a bit of jaundice? I need to read the whole article...)

  • Insulin Resistance Linked to Strokes (relates to my job work)
  • Monday, October 11, 2010

    Mama Montage: 5 months

    My little 5 month old. My little girl. It's hard to believe that my little Sprout is already 5 months old, that I've been a mama for almost half a year already. During pregnancy, the time can really feel like it's dragging--and time takes on different dimensions during the early weeks of newborn holy-moly-what-am-I-doing freakout sleep-deprivation. Those first weeks made time feel like taffy: able to stretch it out to a breaking point and/or contract into a small ball--or you can chew and chew the stuff forever, or just swallow in one quick go (drawing out the simile a bit too much, heh?). In other words, time was a variable dimension.

    Nowadays, time only seems to operate in hyperspeed, fast-forward. Maybe it's only fitting that time is zooming since Sprout is developing by leaps and bounds each week: more mobile, more interactive, more of a little "person." She definitely no longer looks like an infant. Of course, every new parent experiences some sadness at their baby becoming a toddler and then a child, wanting to hold onto the snuggly baby stage for as long as possible. On the other hand, I know that it is a sad medical possibility for some little humans to stay in baby states--due to congenital defects (isn't that a horrible word, when you think about it?) or traumatic injuries. So, grow, Sprout, grow!

    She's now a rolly poly baby. She prefers rolling onto her left side. My mom and I were actually able to capture on video the first time I saw her roll. It was during an overnight away work trip, first time traveling with Sprout. Thankfully, my mom could come with me to help and was rewarded by seeing a few baby milestones (rolling, verbalizing, giggling baby!).

    I love how interactive she has become now! Reaching up to my face when nursing, or grabbing her Dad's glasses when he zooms in for a kiss. We can now make her giggle by smooching he neck or playing 'flying baby'--and she smiles when the dogs lick her feet. On the other hand, we've startled her into crying a few times too--when the hubby laughed loudly at a show on Netflix, or when I suddenly yelled at a dog not to scoot out the door. She's definitely reacting to her surroundings!

    I'm now 2 months in to being at work full-time as well. I'll save that ramble for a subsequent "Paycheck Prattle" post, though.

    Thursday, October 7, 2010

    Mama Montage: food this n' that

    I'm addicted to kashi almond-flax granola bars. They're just the right combo of chewy and nutty and not too sweet. They're so expensive, though. It's made me look into making some homemade granola (cute video) or Mark Bittman's granola bars or Alton Brown's granola bar recipe. I haven't tried any of those yet, but I'd like to when I have the time (ha!).

    I had just been wondering about this topic: Is it Healthy to Have a Vegetarian Baby? (see video after jump at end of post).

    I returned to my vegetarianism when I started my yoga teacher training in 2008, and was a vegetarian through pregnancy (eating more eggs and dairy than I would usually, though, as per Bradley Method recommendations). I just started incorporating some DHA/EPA supplement pills into my daily intake this week, to make sure the good omega vitamins are getting to me and to Sprout through breastmilk. However, I had been wondering whether I needed to incorporate meat into little girl's diet when she starts solids in a few months. Honestly, I don't like handling and preparing meat--especially when I'm not going to be eating it myself. Although it might be more work in the long run (chopping, prepping, steaming), I'm more comfortable prepping veggie dishes.

    Talking about starting solid food for baby, this video from the same website, ParentEarth, is also timely: Cooking and Nutrition for Baby

    I'm going to hold off starting Sprout on solids for as long as possible--mainly because I don't want to deal with cloth diapers and solid poops yet! Breast milk poops are so much easier to deal with (water soluble!). My childcare person has been fine using cloth diapers (supplementing with disposible when she's out n' about with the babes), but I don't know how I can sell cloth diaper care when MJ starts solids (diaper sprayers/bidets are just not common in the U.S.)! I'll tackle that challenge when I come to it.

    Sprout continues to thrive. She's back to drinking 13-15oz of EBM in childcare while I'm at work. Her hunger dipped a bit at the start of the week because she had gotten used to nursing on demand from my previous week (when I had been able to take her with me on a work trip). I've been lucky that I haven't had to travel this week, so I've been able to keep my supply/pumping up.

    Aren't these the coolest looking muffins (via boingboing)? Savory Broccoli Muffins (recipe towards the bottom here). What a creative idea. They seem like a great way to get broccoli into little kids who might otherwise not eat the green stuff (although I always loved broccoli as a child).

    Finally, thank you to my friend, K, for getting me a vegetarian crockpot cookbook. I am now the proud owner of two such specific recipe books. I'll have to work on coordinating the recipes to my different time availabilities, either a 6-8 hr slow cook while I sleep or a 10-hr slow cook for while I'm at work. I tried the sweet n' sour cabbage from the Fresh cookbook, and it was pretty good--albeit a little burned on some of the leaf edges because it had to cook for a bit longer than recommended (work hours).

    Wednesday, October 6, 2010

    Wife, M.D.: scrubs

    Mental Floss has an interesting post about why medical scrubs are often blue and green. I had never thought about the reasons before. Interesting. Also fun because Scrubs is one of the hubby's favorite medical shows (shown in the photo screenshot).
    Why Are Scrubs Usually Blue or Green?
    Medical professionals can choose from a wide variety of scrubs with different colors and patterns. So why are plain blue and green ones so popular?
    It used to be that doctors, especially those performing surgeries, didn’t even wear special work garments and simply operated in their regular clothes and with bare hands. The 1918 flu pandemic and the rise of antiseptic theory led first to the use of surgical masks and rubber gloves and, eventually, antiseptic drapes, gowns and caps in the operating room.

    Early OR garments were white, which emphasized cleanliness but led to eyestrain and headaches for surgeons and their staff. Sometime in the mid-20th century, hospitals began to ditch white linens and switched to various shades of green, which made things easier for both the institutions and their surgeons.
    For the hospitals, doing laundry was less of a headache. Ever try to wash blood out of something white? At best, you’re left with a green/brown discoloration. While white linens had to be frequently tossed and replaced (either because the discoloration was too bad or because frequent washing and bleaching destroyed the fabric), green scrubs have a bit of a longer lifespan.
    For surgeons, operating was less of a literal headache. Green and greenish-blue surgical linens make looking at the inside of a human body easier on the eyes, since they’re opposite red on the color wheel.