Dukan Diet – Days 9 & 10 – A baby and an update on Tiff

Eating strict Dukan, feeling groovy! Feeling very good about the diet and the exercise. I set a goal to do 25 miles by July 1st, I surpassed that this afternoon! It’s the 11th! Woot!!!

The support I’ve had for Tiffany from family and friends, local and afar, has been amazing. I feel so blessed. Tiffany is feeling overwhelmed by the generosity. A reply yesterday from her had me in tears… My love, Tiffany, you DO deserve the love and support of all these people. TIFF had her heel set and she’s now in a cast up to her knee, no weight bearing for 6 weeks. Hard with four kids, but she’ll be able to do it with continued support. She had pain relief initially we the cast, but now that her swelling is going down, she’s actually having pain again. The doc will put on a smaller cast Monday, to support it more.

And…. A baby. A lovely wee boy slipped into my hands yesterday afternoon. This is my 2nd of the two babies I came to China to assist earthside. I’ve said it a few thousand times and will continue saying, I am so blessed to be present and in service to families at their births. I came home, had dinner and did 5K, faster than I had in a long time (which is slow for most, but fast for me… At least I’m out there, lol). A birth high… Feels so good!


During this run I also restarted C25K because Jenni and Sadie are doing it (my oldest daughter and my granddaughter). They started yesterday, too. So when I get home, we’ll be up to speed with each other and can run together. We’re doing the virtual kilomathon together this month and a 5K near home together in September. Three generations running together… How cool is that?!?!

I Get Paid to Do This!

Birth is in my blood. It permeates my life. It makes me whole. I feel immense joy in assisting others in the birth of their babies. I got to do that in the wee early hours today. In paradise. I witnessed a family of 4 become a family of 5. A gorgeous, quick, blessed water birth here in St. John, USVI.

Cassie & Ethan about 30 seconds after he was born into his mommy's hands in the water.

Cassie & Ethan about 30 seconds after he was born into his mommy’s hands in the water.

Birth is about intuition. About listening to the mother and listening within you to make the best choices. This birth was all about intuition. Going with the gut. Knowing all was well. And it was. A juicy 7 lb baby boy, a full pound bigger than his sisters!

Me & Ethan after I completed his newborn exam.

Me & Ethan after I completed his newborn exam.

I still have 6 days in paradise… I see some beach time in my immediate future!


Ciao 🙂


Dukan – Day 219 – Off to Marketing We Go!

Sunday was a PV (protein/veggie) day 🙂

Daily Weight Loss: 0.4 lb/0.2 kg (this is actually 2 days)
Total Weight Loss: 81.2 lb/36.91 kg

I’m nearly recovered from my birthin’ babies week. Oh how we get used to 8 – 5, going to bed at 10, waking up at 6… SLEEP 😀 It almost feels a bit like jet lag. I can’t imagine what it must be like for the woman going through labor!

It’s been a glorious weekend here in regard to the sun. Shining, warm, bathing this lovely, polluted town in light. I even saw the moon last night! It was the first time since my last night in Florida back on February 8th! It was what I call a cradle moon… pretty in the sky!

I had to speak at a marketing event yesterday afternoon. Our branding and marketing department actually have MORE STAFF than we have NURSES… I’m not joking. But they do a great job putting on big events, at least once monthly! I spoke about “The Enchantment of Water Birth”… same PowerPoint I’ve been using for months now… we just change the title and sub-titles… the last event was “The Magic of Water Birth”… LOL… my Personal Assistant, Kitty, doesn’t even ask anymore… she just changes it.

And speaking of Kitty… here she is…

Seconds before I snapped this shot, Kitty was SLEEPING on my shoulder... she's too cute, popped her head up, smiled for the camera, laid her head down and went back to sleep 🙂

Random funny thing that happened yesterday afternoon. We were stuck in traffic coming back from the marketing event and stopped in front of the Chlitina shop (the one next to Slavery.. I’m not makin’ this stuff up!) and the staff were all outside doing line dancing. I tried to snap a picture, but the video was on instead… you can view it here: Chlitina Dancers it’s only a few seconds long, but you’ll get the point… I was listening to music on my iPhone at the time and in my ear was David Cook’s “Life On the Moon”… totally describes my life in China to a tee 🙂

Day ended with a visit to the hospital to check on K and Baby H and then home for dinner, which was Pork, mushrooms and asparagus and then a nice run around the neighborhood, where I even got a shot of yet another neighbor out strollin’ in his pajamas (call me a PJ stalker, but it humors me and keeps me sane in this crazy place, LOL)…

Out for a stroll in his jammies... Tough to get clear shots in the dark and while running, but you get the idea 🙂

Running is getting easier and easier for me… I’m totally loving it now. Running 2 nights in a row, then take a night off… on that night I go to the gym for 30 mins and have the muscle head help me work on my arms, abs and thighs.

So that’s the weekend update. I’ve added some other pics from along the way this weekend… Enjoy 😀


Street food from Saturday night... new meaning to the words Fish Sticks 🙂 YUMMY!!!

Our yoga instructor did prenatal yoga with audience participants.

The Emcee wore a gold suit and was quite the comedian! The orchestra was lovely!

Chiara and Alessaundro (aka NuNu) were there. Chiara gave a speech about her wonderful water birth... She was the first water birth in Hangzhou, and I was lucky enough to be her midwife! NuNu will be 1 on May 6th!

Dukan – Days 211 & 212 – Whooshing

Well, I had a blog break yesterday due to a momma calling in labor while I was typing out the morning blog 😀

Saturday was a PP day on purpose
Sunday was a PP day because I was at the hospital until 9 p.m.

Two whooshes have me elated, yet worried… LOLl
Daily weight loss: 1.3 lbs/0.60 kg
Total weight loss: 78.1 lb/35.51 kg
then Sunday:
Daily weight loss: 1.3 lb/0.60 kg
Total weight loss: 79.4 lb/36.11 kg

Saturday food:
Breakfast: 2 tea eggs, coffee
Only worked 1/2 a day so had a yummy lunch: I stir fried 2 tea eggs, 1/4 onion, 5 garlic cloves and 3 slices of bacon with some Italian seasoning… life doesn’t get better than that (I trimmed most of the fat from the bacon, and only allow myself bacon 2x a month… it’s my favorite food GROUP).
Dinner: Chicken breast stir fried with onions and garlic stems
Snack: 2 egg omelet with 2 TBS bran and diced onions

Water: 3 liters
Walk to work 1 mile/1.5 kms
Walk home from work 1 mile/1.5 kms
Walk to 35mm for 2 cafe latte’s with skim milk: 1.61 miles/2.6 km
Walk home from cafe the scenic route along canal: 2.6 miles/4.18 km
C25K run: 2.14 miles/3.44 km
**I think I got my exercise in on Saturday 😀

Sunday food:
Breakfast: 3 oz of steak and 2 eggs (I ate instead of blogging, once the patient called!)
Lunch: 2 tea eggs
Very late dinner: Chicken leg and 2 tea eggs (patient’s hubby got for me)… Spicy!
Snack at 11 p.m.: 2% Greek yogurt… My food order came from Shanghai and they didn’t have fat free in stock, so sent 2%… in all actuality, the 2% has less carbs than the fat free… I’ll sacrifice!

Water: 1.5 liters
Walk to work: 1 mile/1.5 kms
Supporting a woman in labor for 10 hours (walking her, massaging her, supporting her… it’s work!)
Ran with 2 year old in arms about 50 yards to hail taxi at 9 p.m., with my backpack and his overnight bag on my back!!! I’d say this was more exercise than running a 5K … lol

Lovely baby girl born at 535 p.m., all happy and well and then Soren’s mommy came in with some tummy trouble and I took him home with me for a few hours so she could be treated and I could have fun! We played games on the iPad and read… as stated before, he’s a pretty cool 2 year old to hang with!
Here he is playing Animal Safari, you can see Bert and Barbie the bunny snuggling behind him…

So… that was my 2 days… going in an hour late this morning since I worked all day and then some on my day off and I have a bit of a headache 😦 The weather is getting better, for the most part… it is raining out there this morning, but in the last 7 days we’ve had 4 sunshiny days, and that makes me a wee bit happier!


“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
~ Maria Robinson

Dukan – Day 16 – Day 8 Cruise

Today was a PP Day

Daily Loss: 0.3 lb/0.14 kg
Total Loss: 16.6 lb/7.55 kg
Wt. to go: 93.4 lb/42.5 kg

Small weight loss from yesterday to today, but it’s a loss, and that’s all that matters. Still a bit knackered from the 28 hours of no sleep, but recovering.

Food today:
Breakfast: Yogurt w/ splenda and oat bran
Lunch: about 5 oz. of sliced roast beef, WAY over cooked 😦
Dinner: Chicken and shrimp stir-fried in a teeny amount of olive oil with a whole onion cut into wedges and lots of rosemary and pepper and a wee bit of salt.

No time for snacks today. Meetings at work all morning until lunch, then the media came for interviews about the birth and information on water birth and then another meeting in the afternoon.

I did get my water in and my other drinks were 2 coffees and a diet coke. I took a nice long walk tonight, picking up my pace with the sound track from G.I. Jane… kick ass sound track!

Now off to bed to start it all over again tomorrow!


Traveling Girl

So, off I go again on another adventure. This one proves to be challenging and fun… How my week went:

10 days ago Barbara Harper (www.waterbirth.org) asked me if I’d like to do a waterbirth training in Shanghai, China. Um, duh… of COURSE I WOULD! I love Barbara, I have loved her from the first time I read her book, Gentle Birth Choices. I used to show the video to every single childbirth class I taught. Then I met her and she’s even better in person (LOL). Her energy, her vision, her everything is amazing.

So, next step was to get the time off from work… which I managed to do without a hitch! We made plans and the plane tickets were purchased and off I would go on Saturday, April 30th to Shanghai.

Then, off to get a visa to visit China… ROADBLOCK AHEAD! Because my current employer hasn’t managed to obtain a Residency Visa for the UAE yet, the Chinese Embassy could not issue me a visa to travel to Shanghai… PANIC MODE. What to do? Will I have to fly to the States to get a visa? Call off the trip? As I’m hyperventilating, trying not to cry and basically yelling on the phone at the PRO from my job, the Chinese embassy man is tapping on the glass to get my attention.

I walk back to him, people part ways because the crazy lady is coming through, and he proceeds to tell me he has a solution for me… you do??? You can give me the visa? Um, no, but you can FLY TO HONG KONG to get it. LOL… my laugh cracks me up. Living in Abu Dhabi is like livin’ la vida loco… seriously. Now this is Sunday, I’m suppose to go to Shanghai on Saturday… SIX DAYS AWAY! and now this guy is telling me that to get into Shanghai, I’ll have to go to Hong Kong…. how to do.

Next stop… Emirates Airlines. I drive over to their office which is on the Corniche:

Abu Dhabi Corniche

Instead of going into the office, I walk over to the water and sit for a few minutes, collect myself, have a little chat with the BIG GUY upstairs and beg him for just one little thing to go right… just one, let’s not make this day too difficult for me, ya hear? I’m fragile… LOL

I then proceed to go over to the office and find the nicest Iranian girl in the world, who helped me, got me a GREAT seat and didn’t charge me a change fee for my flight. She booked me to Hong Kong, then HK to Shanghai and left my return flight the same. The good news… I get to fly on the A380… biggest plane in the sky… two stories of luxury at it’s finest. Even the cheap seats recline!

So, then back to work the next day to tell the boss that now I need 3 more days off from work! But, simple as pie, maafi mushkala! Now I have less than 24 hours to pack for a 2 week trip… I can DO this!

Packing itself was a challenge, but I am so happy that I did all that laundry on Saturday! Why was packing a challenge, because I think the cats KNOW when I’m leaving… this is the kind of games that they play:

Marina trying to sneak her way in to the suitcase!

And this is what her brother Oyster did when I told him I was leaving for 2 1/2 weeks:

Oh no, Mom, not again!

But quick packing I did! Arranged for a ride to the airport with my friend, Laura, which meant GETTING UP AT 355 a.m. to go! But, ride beggars can’t be choosy! So we got up very early and headed out to Dubai.

I got to the airport with more than 4 hours to spare, which was nice, because those of you that know me well, know what travel anxiety I have. Nope… it’s not about flying… I have NO fear of flying because I have NO fear of dying. I just have general anxiety of making sure that I’ve got everything packed (I didn’t… I forgot the HK hotel vouchers on my desk at work and it was the FIRST thing they asked for!!!) and about getting to the airport on time. So, no problem there, given that I was there so early. I had a lovely breakfast and then sat and read for a few hours. Nice and relaxed. And then the plane pulled in… WOW! I hadn’t seen the A380 in person… just pictures and she is impressive… take a look:

My Ride!

After much anticipation, we were ready to board. I lucked out and had a flight attendant sitting two seats over, no one between us. She was on holiday and flying to meet her boyfriend in China. Awesome chick, very helpful and we have something in common… we both love playing…


OMG… I was so happy to see that they had something fun to do while flying! Jenni… I know you are just jealous as all get out now! 🙂 We had a great time playing and chatting.

Barbara made my reservation and requested vegetarian… which was fine, but I’M A MEAT EATER BARBARA! LOL! The meal was actually quite awesome:

Lunch on the Emirates A380

It was a pasta filled to the gills with yummy veggies (one I have no idea what it was, but it was yummy!) and a large, fresh roll, real butter and an interesting pudding like dessert. I watched Social Network while eating and it was a pretty decent movie, even though they portray Sean Parker as one of the founders of Napster…. which he was not.

I read my James Patterson novel, Fang, and then settled in for a very comfortable nap. The cheap seats on the A380 RECLINE! Yup, they do. And I didn’t have a seat in front of me, so I had tons of leg room (I tried a regular seat and it was more roomy than British Airways and Etihad). I slept without awaking for the 1 hour I had set my alarm to. I awoke to this charming young lady doing stretches in front of me:

Charming Young Lady

Later, she left her sunglasses and something odd (not sure what it was, honestly!) in the bathroom, after what I (and many others) suspect was attaining another notch in her mile high club belt… and I found it. She just about squeezed me to death for giving them back to her… too funny. I did, however, feel like I needed to be decontaminated!

All in all, a great flight. The service on the Emirates A380 was excellent! The food was pretty good and the flight was smooth, with only a couple of bouts of turbulence.

On the hotel transfer bus I sat in the front row to avoid motion sickness. They had 80’s/90’s music on the radio. The third song was “We Are the World” and by the end, I think everyone on the bus was singing it… even though the seats were high and none of us could see each other… on 2nd thought, maybe that’s why we were all singing… we were anonymous! The 2nd song we all sang together was Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World”… Fun ride, I love singing… even if it is off-key!

So… just a couple of more pics to wrap things up… this is what the line looked like at the Visa office this morning:

Visa Line at the Chinese Consulate

I thought I would be there all day, but alas, I was there less than 2 hours! When I finally made it inside, through security and up to the 7th floor, I was #214… the number on the board was 145! Ack 69 people ahead of me, but it went very quickly. Now I just have to wait to pick it up tomorrow morning.

I decided to walk back to the hotel and stopped at a little specialty store to pick up some lunch… I got a Coca-Cola Light with lemon (something I can’t get in Abu Dhabi… the lemon part that is) and some sushi and my favorite chips in the whole wide world that I can’t find anywhere but HK.. Curry Chips. Next to the curry chips were these chips:

Kyushu Seaweed Flavored Lay's Potato Chips... who knew!

I was tempted, but I so wanted the Curry Chips more… shucks! So, now I’ve been hanging at the hotel all day. Started reading A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini. Catching up on some stuff on the computer, doing some competencies for my real job, reviewing work sent to me by my girls back at the hospital and playing Mahjongg Dimensions, which is, for some crazy reason, blocked by Etisalat, my sucky internet provider!

I hope ya’ll have enjoyed my update… more later in the week, after I’m in Shanghai, unless something earth shattering happens here in HK in the meantime… Ciao!