Sunday, June 29, 2008

Carlie's Big Impression

Last night (Saturday night), Christy and I went to the mall (hence why we were in the taxi). There we got some birth supplies for cheap at the medical supplies store. Umbilical cord scissors at home start at $30 and go up. I got a pair yesterday for around $3. I am thinking of buying a 10 year supply for that price.

For dinner, we went to a place that Carlie, my mom and I went to a handful of times last year. Immediately, I recognize a couple of the workers, but I assumed that after 10 months, they wouldn't remember me - especially since I did not have Carlie with me. Near the end of the meal, all three came up to us and asked about Carlie and my mom. They referred to her as Sweetie Carlie and one of the servers said she still had Carlie's picture on her phone wallpaper. Isn't that sweet?

Here is a picture with one of them...excuse how horrible I look. :)

Today's Shift - Sunday 6/29/08

I worked the Day Shift today - from 6 am - 2 pm. We just had one birth today and it was a continuity of student midwife here. I was honored to sit in on the birth. A nice 8 lb baby boy was born at 7:07 am after the mother being at the clinic for a little over an hour. They were both expecting a little girl, but seemed thrilled with their surprise.

Here is the little guy.

Taxi Rides

For those of you that have never been to the Philippines will probably have a hard time understanding the "rules of the road" here or maybe I should say the lack of "rules of the road." Let me fill you in a bit...the bigger you are, the more of the right of way you have. Therefore, big rigs and buses have right away over jeepnees and jeepnees have right of way over cars, cars over tricycabs and tricycabs over pedicabs and pedicabs over pedestrians. There are not many stop lights, stop signs of street signage at all. You can pick a lane or make your own. Horn honking lets you know to move out of the way or risk getting hit. It is crazy to say the least, but I do have to say the Filippino People have awesome depth perception. I have no idea why you don't see more accidents. They come within inches of hitting one another and yet don't. It blows my mind.

All of that said, I have taken some pretty crazy taxi rides here, but nothing tops last night ride to SM Mall with Christy. Our driver was a middle aged man with some road rage issues. I felt horrible for Christy because it was terrifying. We joked that the plane was NOTHING compared to this. Anyways, I had to catch her expression of fear. I personally think the photo is hilarious. She does not see the humor though.

First Shift & Mystery Solved

I was scheduled to work on Friday night from 10 pm - 6 am. I was really excited to get back in the swing of things, but about 30 minutes before the start of my shift, I began to feel sick. My stomach was in knots and I was so hot. After visiting the C.R. (comfort room here - restroom to those of you reading) a couple times and then taking some Immodium AD, I was hoping that I could get through the night. During endorsements, I continued to feel sick. The room was spinning, I felt like there was an inferno burning in my body and my stomach was not ok. I ended up needing to go home for the night to try and get better. I was super bummed since there were 4 ladies laboring, but I didn't have any choice.
I woke up in the morning feeling completely normal. I had mentioned to a couple people that it felt like I had eaten a banana - I am allergic to bananas and get violently ill when I eat them, but I knew I hadn't had one.
Late last night, Carmen, a supervisor, came to me, apologizing profusely. She realized she inadvertantly put a banana in a mango smoothie she had made for me - not knowing that I cannot eat bananas. I assured her, I was not mad and just glad to know what the deal was.
I am just glad I am not sick now :)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Trip to the beach...

Yesterday, we had some free time before I started my first shift at 10 pm, so we decided to take advantage of it and we headed over to Paradise Island. The weather was super mild and absolutely beautiful. We spent the day reading, relaxing, swimming and snorkeling. It was wonderful.

Reuniting with Old Friends

We arrived early Thursday morning and I had previously made plans to meet with a patient and her family that I served last year for dinner. By the time dinner time rolled around, Christy and I were exhausted. We had been up with very little sleep for close to 48 hours. We met Honey and her husband Andy and their three kids for quick bite at Victoria, a local mall. We ate a Chow King and unfortunately, I couldn't enjoy it much because I was so tired. Regardless of how exhausted we were, it was great to see Honey and Andy again. We have been keeping in contact through email for the past 10 months, but there is nothing like seeing someone in person. I cannot get over how big their kids have gotten. Honey has been busy raising them. Joshua (age 5) is in school for a couple hours a day, but Glaiza (age 2) and Khyle (10 mos) are at home with her. Andy quit his job at a local mall and is now going back to school for computer sciences. I am praying that it opens up more doors for them.

My dinner - sweet and sour pork.


Like I said in my previous post - our flights were good - just so long. I am not sure how I did it last year with a 2 year old!

We flew Northwest Airlines from LAX to Tokyo and then Tokyo to Manila. They served us a couple different meals and they were great, at least for airline food and compaired to what we got on Philippine Air last year. The seats were incredibly small and our knees were jammed into the seat in front of us, but we survived. It isn't really fair that they make you walk through first class to see what you are missing. Man, those big seats and leg room looked so nice!

For some reason, my camera erased the pics I took before we got to Tokyo :( I am not sure what happened, but they are gone.

Here are some from Tokyo and Manila.

Christy at take-off. She doesn't think this picture is nearly as funny as I do... Needless to say, she isn't fond of flying.
We held hands for every take-off and landing. I am going to miss having her on the way home. Isn't it nice to have friends?
Look what I used in Tokyo? Probably more than anyone wanted to know, but I had to try it. The other toilets were like ours in the States, only they played a flushing sound to hide the sound of you using the restroom. Helps with privacy, I guess :)
McDonald's in the Tokyo airport. I paid about $8 for a double cheeseburger, fries, coke and apple pie. All but the apple pie were the same as we get in the US. The apple pie was deep fried. It was yummy!

Greasy - just like home!
Waiting in line at Immigration in Manila.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Christy's blog

Christy is keeping up her blog better than I am. If you are interested in more details from the past 36 hours - check hers out.

We're here!!!

Just wanted to let you know we arrived safe and sound in Davao early this morning. Our flights were good - just long. Right now, we are heading to the store to get some supplies. I'll try to update with pics soon!

Monday, June 23, 2008


I am getting ready to leave Utah this morning. I will drive out to So Cal and fly out with Christy tomorrow afternoon.
I haven't felt nervous up until this point, but I have knots in my stomach this morning. I know everyone will be ok, but I won't see them for 3 weeks.
You probably won't see an update from me until I get to Davao and rested. We arrive there on Thursday, early in the morning - which is Wednesday - late evening for us in the United States.
Please keep us in your prayers!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Gift Bags

I am pretty much done collecting the stuff for the gift bags I am going to give the moms I serve. Overall, I am pretty happy with all that I have collected. I am just waiting on some newborn size cloth diaper covers a friend is giving me tomorrow and then I will be done.

Here is a completed bag, minus the diapers and pads.

All the slings I made. I think there are 9 total.
Drawstring bags to put all the goodies in. I made these too. Who knew I could be so crafty? :)
Baby blankets...
Newborn clothing...
Cloth diapers, disposable diapers and pads...

Thanks to everyone who donated!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Into the single digits!

I am getting so excited! We leave in 9 days! I have started packing. It seems a lot easier this year - probably because I am going for a shorter period, without a toddler and I know what I will need and use while there. My living room is covered in luggage.
I have also been collecting stuff for little gift bags for each of the women I serve while I am there. In it, I am going to put a baby sling, diapers, pads, receiving blanket, baby clothes, etc. I will see if I can get a picture up here later today.
Happy Father's Day to all the daddies out there! Thanks for all that you do.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Where has the time gone?

So much has gone on in the past 10 months. I have had quite a few births, some very normal and some not so much.

Not a day has gone by since being home from our trip that I have not thought about the experience. It was one of the hardest - most amazing experiences of my life. I am so grateful I had the chance to go.

So, here is my big update... I am going to be going to Mercy again! This time only for a little over two weeks. I leave 21 days from now and am so excited. I am hoping to reconnect with a continuity I had from last year and seeing a couple other moms I served and have been keeping in contact with over email.

Stay tuned for updates and pics!