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Thursday, May 21, 2009

It's Time for Black and White

My new release, entitled Black and White is now available. This book links the Ten Commandments to the Beatitudes found in Matthew's Gospel. The Black and White curriculum teaches about the Ten Commandments in a brand new way; the emphasis is on what we should be doing as Catholics.

The curriculum is perfect for every student; it is especially appropriate for those students who are preparing for Confirmation. It is an excellent tool for stamping/imprinting the Ten Commandments on our children's hearts.

Black and White and its parent/teacher guide are available on my website: and select Catholic bookstores around the country (including One More I would like to invite those who are attending the MN Home School conference, May 28 & 29th, to please feel free to stop by my table, introduce yourself and browse through my books designed to fortify families.

For your information, this is an excerpt from the introduction of Black and White:

"Organizations need fundamental, basic constitutions in order to grow and thrive. These provide foundation, basic structure, purpose, mission, and vision. These documents give an institution’s “followers” – i.e. their members - reason to belong, support, and subscribe to the organizational directives.
The Church also has charters, constitutions, and working documents. Most of these are divinely ordained rather than humanly crafted. God has provided the Church with the Ten Commandments, the inspired Bible, and its ecclesiastical structure. Parish communities have sprung up from these basic foundations.
People need structure and organizational directives – especially moral ones - for their personal, social, and spiritual well being. Without direction, anarchy and decadence become likely. All of society needs moral laws to dampen natural selfishness and to provide direction.
Black and White examines God’s moral codes found in the Old and New Testament and the Church’s instruction in the principles of Christianity via the Catechism of the Catholic Church. This book in effect blends God’s moral code found in the Bible with contemporary Catholic instruction. It considers what the commandments and the Church bid us to do as believers. Often people consider what the Ten Commandments forbid rather than considering what we are called to do as Catholics and Christians. As disciples of Christ we are to arm ourselves with virtue and avoid vice and temptation. This book provides a tool for that type of reflection. Black and White is also a type of an examination of conscience booklet. It focuses on what we should do rather than what we should not do. It takes a good hard look at the sins of omission. You will learn more about the sins of omission in the pages to come. "

It's Black and White

My new release, entitled Black and White, is now available. This book links the Ten Commandments to the Beatitudes - it emphasizes what we should be doing as Catholics. A Parent/Teacher guide is also available; this guide outlines each lesson plan and includes a test and answer key.
The Black and White curriculum teaches the Ten Commandments in a new way; too many of our teens don't know the Ten Commandments even though it should be stamped on every Christian heart. This curriculum attempts to change that! This book is designed for students enrolled in CCD or Confirmation classes, or other religious education programs. This curriculum can be used in the home or in class room instruction. It has the Nihil Obstat Certification.
the curriculum can be ordered online at For those attending the MN Home School Conference at Macalester College May 28 - 29, 2009, I will be there to showcase this work and Daughters Forever, Sons Forever. See you there.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Using Ultrasound to Identify Lactating Breast Problems


This week’s blog will focus on breast problems and Ultrasound technology. Identifying a breastfeeding problem is the necessary first step toward its resolution.

1. Lumps in the breast are never considered normal - even during pregnancy and lactation. They should be investigated properly - if the reason is unkown - using Ultrasound technology; in fact Ultrasound screening is now considered the first choice of methods used for investigating unknown breast lumps. Ultrasounds can differentiate between a cyst or fibroadenomas (tumors) even during lactation.

2. Breast tumors are uncommon - yet identifable - during pregnancy or lactation. Biopsy of the tumor is necessary to learn whether it is benign or malignant; ultrasound technology cannot pinpoint whether a tumor is benign or malignant.

3. Breast cancer is rare among pregnant and lactating women – the reported rates vary from 1/3000 (0.033%) women to 1/10000 (0.01%) women. Symptoms usually begin before or during pregnancy; increased mammary blood flow during pregnancy and lactation is thought to accelerate the growth of tumors that are present.

4. Galactoceles (dilated terminal ducts (ductules)) are the result of an obstruction of a milk duct- this obstruction may be due to a lesion or inflammation. Aspiration of the ductile using ultrasound guidance is both diagnostic and therapeutic.

5. Plugged ducts normally show up as a tender lump on the breast - usually it is not accompanied by redness or fever. Suspected causes include abrupt decreases in a breastfeeding baby’s feeding pattern, underwire bras, restrictive clothing or scarring due to an earlier breast surgery or infection. Recently, selective secretory immunoglobulin (SSI) A deficiency has been identified in women who have recurrent blocked ducts - further research is needed. Treatment of plugged ducts include massage of the lumpy (nodular) area and increased frequency/length of breastfeeding. Ultrasounds can be used to follow the plugged duct; needle aspiration of the plugged ducts is used when it is necessary to speed up the resolution of the problem and pain.

6. Abscesses can be identified via ultrasound; furthermore, ultrasounds are frequently used to help guide physicians drain abscesses, and for followup after breast procedures. Abscesses rarely (3%) occur after a bout with mastitis.

7. Breast Engorgement normally occurs within 2 – 5 days after giving birth. The treatments to be used to alleviate engorgement include cold compresses and frequent breastfeeding. Severe engorgement may compromise a mother’s milk supply by causing nipple trauma or mastitis.

8. Mastitis is an inflammation of the breast; an infectious case of mastitis can occur due to the entry of pathogens including staph, strep or e-coli or it can be the result of a non-infection. Pathogens enter the breast via the nipple fissures - these fissures are often the result of having sore nipples or other nipple trauma. Non infectious mastitis is also possible due to blocked ducts, engorgement, or physical injury to the breast; these problems can lead to localized inflammatory response of the breast tissue. Monitoring mastitis with ultrasound technology is helpful; the monitoring is helpful for showing resolution of the problem.

9. Ultrasound imaging is considered to be the most appropriate, initial, investigative tool to use to evalutate problems such as those listed above. If any of you have unresolved or ongoing breast problems after birth, consider "getting thee to an ultrasound.”