Welcoming Mackenzie – A Birth Story

This is a birth story, and like the birth itself, it wont be sterile and clinical and institutionalized.  It’s going to be raw and earthy and natural.  Honest.  And I while I don’t think it’s particularly scary, consider yourself forewarned.

I want to invite you into our experience for a few reasons. First, most young women don’t have any concept of what a “natural” birth looks like anymore.  Second, I’ve gotten tons of questions about why I chose to have a home birth. I think sharing our super awesome experience is the best possible explanation. And finally, I think women need to take back the ownership of birth and create a positive community around birthing.   We do that by sharing our positive stories and empowering each other.


To begin, there are a few things you have to understand about me.  I hate doctors.  I was a very ill child, and I saw […]

By |August 10th, 2013|Family, Little Ass-Kicker, Misadventures in Pregnancy|6 Comments

Tiny Human, Your Mother Is Most Definitely Not Amused

“Though she be but little, she is fierce!”
― William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Everyone – our midwife included – thought our baby would have been born by now.  Little Miss has other plans, apparently.

For two weeks now, I’ve been having contractions.  They start sporadically. They normalize enough to start timing them. And once it seems like things are progressing, the whole process stops entirely.  This culminated last night when my contractions got to be an average of a 70 seconds long and 3 minutes apart. After and hour of that pattern, I called our midwife.

Actually, I called her a few times. First, to let let her know that something might be happening. Second, to let her know that something was definitely happening. Then a third time because I hadn’t heard back from her and I was starting to get anxious. When she called me back, I was flooded […]

By |July 18th, 2013|Little Ass-Kicker, Misadventures in Pregnancy|3 Comments

Showered With Love

Our little one will be here soon. Little Miss and I have made it through 36 weeks together, and every morning I give her a little pep talk to remind her to stay content where she is until we hit 37 weeks.  “Just eight more days,” I told her this morning, “Then you can join us. Do you think you can manage?”  In response, she gave me a pretty firm kick.  I’m not sure if it was a disappointed kick or an affirmative kick.  Sometimes it’s hard to tell – but she seemed to feel strongly about it one way or another.

We’re almost ready for her to join us and expand our family.  The nursery is painted. Her closet is full of gorgeous, girly pink things.  I’ve reorganized most of the closets in our house.  Our floors and walls have been scrubbed.  And I’m very much ready to book another […]

By |June 26th, 2013|Family, Little Ass-Kicker, Misadventures in Pregnancy|5 Comments


I have 11 more work days before beginning my maternity leave.  And I have mixed feelings about that.

On a basic level, I’m thrilled.  There is nothing  worse than sitting in traffic, trying to get home for two hours, with a little ninja practicing roundhouse kicks on your bladder in between Braxton Hicks contractions.  (Okay, I can think of one thing worse: attempting to shave your legs with a blunt razor while massively pregnant and having Braxton Hicks contractions).  The commute in and out of Vancouver takes up 2-4 hours of my day and it’s exhausting. It’s also screwing up my back in pretty serious ways. Recently, dinner has been increasingly comprised of flavorless processed garbage. With exception to our weekly Wendy’s dinners; Wendy’s is tasty, flavorful processed garbage.

Last night is a great example of why I’m thrilled to be done with work.  I got home at 7:45 after sitting in […]

But what you really mean is…











It’s fascinating how divided women are on almost every aspect of birthing, feeding, diapering, sleep training, and parenting.  Sometimes I feel like a lot of people that give me advice don’t really have a reason behind why they’re making their choices.  And really, the why is the most important part!

In case you didn’t get the memo, you can’t make choices for your child just to fit in with the Judgey-Mom Club.

There are a bunch of mommy-trends that I just can’t get excited about: elective cesareans, epidurals, cloth diapers, baby wearing, expensive baby food blender sets, the list goes on and on. And, there are a lot of things I’m excited about that seem to shock or frighten other women: natural birth, midwifery,  home birth, doulas… You get the picture.  I just find it super frustrating that there is so much judgement.  I’m not having my baby in a hospital with […]

By |May 3rd, 2013|Misadventures in Pregnancy, Musings|2 Comments

Major Adjustment

Since the start of the year, I have been plagued with terrible back pain.  Being pregnant sucks because you can’t take anything stronger than Tylenol. While I generally feel you should deal with the root of a problem instead of the symptoms, I have seen more than enough medical professionals since the start of my pregnancy, and I did not want to add another to the list.  (Have I mentioned I hate anyone who has spent most of a decade studying all of the terrible, horrible things that can happen to your body?) However unwise, I put off dealing with my back pain until last week.

When I woke up last Monday morning, I could not get out of bed. It was agonizing.  I tried to hobble to the bathroom, but I felt like my legs were giving out with every step.  I had to take a sick day.  I spent […]

By |May 3rd, 2013|Misadventures in Pregnancy, Musings|1 Comment

28 Weeks

Today I am 28 weeks pregnant, and our little person could make a grand entrance at any point 9 weeks from now.  Of course it would be better if she decided to wait another 12 weeks before joining us, but it will really be up to her. And let me tell you, she’s going to join us when she’s good and ready and not a moment earlier or later – no matter what I have to say about the matter.

As we finish preparing for her arrival, I find that I’m torn between moments of excitement and those of trepidation.  I don’t want to wait 12 weeks more to meet this incredible little person that has been my constant companion for months. I feel like I already know her, but I want to see the curves of her face and to count her toes. I want to know if she has […]

Baby Janzen is a . . .

Right before I went to Kindergarten, my mom took me out for a special lunch.  Going to a nice, sit-down restaurant was a treat for our family, but this was even more special because my mum took me out for lunch.  My dad made a big deal of taking me out for “special days” because he traveled a lot. We’d go see a movie or get McDonald’s milkshakes.  I can’t recall any other time before that day that mum had taken me out for a special day.

Usually mum and I had Pete in tow, and – if anything – we’d stop for a sticky bun at a bakery or a super special McDonald’s.  Never a real, grown-up lunch.  If I remember correctly, I even got to wear my brand new school shoes for the first time. We went to a Chinese restaurant and I ate my first bowl of sweet […]

Misadventures in Pregnancy: Evasive Maneuvers

It finally happened: I was forced to take evasive maneuvers from a complete stranger attempting to touch my baby bump.  Honestly, my bump is still quite small, and I know that there have been some post-Thanksgiving-turkey-binge mornings I’ve looked equally round. I was surprised that someone would actually make any reference to my pregnancy when it’s still a little ambiguous, but I was prepared.

Being pregnant dissolves any societal norms about personal boundaries. It’s like people view me as a shiny new incubator, or some sort of communal property. And, in case you haven’t noticed, I’m not. And I don’t want to be touched. I hate being touched by people I don’t know.  And I hate any sort of social situation that makes it okay for a stranger to get into my personal space.  Crowded elevators. Standing-room-only anything. Wax Museums with bus loads of foreign tourists (don’t ask). And now, being […]