Saturday, January 12, 2008

First and Best '07

The Toronto Public Library has put together their First and Best Kids Books of 2007. You can find it here:


While researching baby names, I came across this fantastic baby naming tool called Nymbler. The interesting thing about this tool is that it's based upon an application called The Hunch Engine, so it makes personalized suggestions based upon your likes and dislikes. Neat!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Birth Story

I've been telling people that I had Grace at home and recounting my birth story. I've had two moms-to-be tell me - thank me actually - for telling them about my positive experience. And it occurred to me: people rarely hear about positive birth experiences. It's always about the episiotomies, the forceps, the c-sections, the hours of pushing, the "failure to progress", and of course, THE PAIN.

The truth is: I don't think I could have had a more positive birth experience. Grace's birth was so oddly textbook, that it wasn't textbook. My water broke just after dinner at 7:15. I started my contractions at about 8:15 - just in time for Jesse to put Audrey to bed. I laboured for a couple of hours before calling Chris, my midwife, at 11:00 when my contractions were about two to five minutes apart. She came over at 11:45. I went from 4cm to 7cm in an hour and a half ("good" progress is usually one cm an hour). And then sometime around 2:45am, I got that urge to push. Chris asked me to hold off partly because she had to call her backup.

I think that lasted all of 30 minutes, because by 3:30, I definitely couldn't "hold off" any longer. By 3:50 I was definitely in stage two labour. Tia, my backup midwife, barely made it in time to see the shoulders birthed.

Grace was born by 4:11am.

All without pain medication, at home and with my previous delivery being a c-section (yes, the dreaded "VBAC").

Thursday, January 10, 2008


I've found a new addiction in Vimeo. I've finally found a way to share video with the fam in Vancouver without all the challenges of YouTube, which I found to be very user unfriendly for some of the novices I wanted to share videos with.

What I like best is that I can easily share video and hide the contents by password-protecting them. People don't have to become members to view hidden videos; they can just view them if they have the appropriate authentication rights. They've used AJAX pretty well: I can update details of the video while the video uploads. And I find the interface very clean and easy to use - both for administrators and people who simply want to view videos.

I wish that there were a faster way to upload the videos themselves - maybe via FTP or some desktop widget that would batch upload the videos. Right now, it's a bit of a pain to do them one at a time.

Check out the fruits of my labour here: