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Showing posts from May, 2019

An Honest Blog

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Good morning fellow Mamas,

I just wanted to sit down and have a little chat with you guys.

I started this blog because I was going through a Mommy-Life Crisis. I was going a little nuts. I was trapped at home with a newborn baby, little connection, and no good outlet. I wanted to encourage other moms as I knew I needed encouragement. 

So, one morning, I started this blog! With my very first post I felt excited and driven, purposeful. I had something to look forward to in the days of little sleep and long days. I had a goal in mind: ENCOURAGING YOU. Then came the struggle to get the blog out to you moms. 

I wasn't on social media, so I would text the blog to every mom I had in my phone contacts. I texted out blogs more than once, but still the numbers sunk back down to minuscule. It was discouraging, it was challenging, but I pressed forward.

I texted every mom in my phone contacts...and something really special started to happen. I started to connect! I got in contact with an old frien…

Gratitude

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I’m tired.
I’m 33 weeks pregnant and this baby is getting bigger and taking a lot of energy to grow. My pain level has been higher the last couple weeks, too, which is exhausting by itself. I’m teaching a crochet class twice a week, which has been very fun and enjoyable, but is another thing that fills my schedule. 
And then there are the many trips to ballet class. The girls are preparing for a show, and the studio is an hour drive from our home, so I’m spending a lot of time on the road and away from home right now…
I am tired, but I am so thankful! 


I get to have another baby! I wasn’t sure that was ever going to happen again because of my health struggles, but it is! And I know that this little one will be worth all the pain and exhaustion. I cannot wait to look into his precious face!
I’m thankful that my condition is not something that threatens my life or the life of my baby in any way. It could be so much worse! The pain is hard to bear, but it’s just pain, and not illness.
I’m than…

Your Special Place

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I'm coming off of a high of a day and I figured I better sit down and rejoice with you NOW before "Monday" hits and it all fades away. Haha.

So today we made it to the beach.
The beach is my FAVORITE!

I grew up in walking distance of the ocean. I have wonderful memories of having adventures on the beach with my siblings. Memories of walking along the beach singing out my prayers to God. Times I remember talking to the seals that popped their heads up to look at me. I love the ocean! Not only do I love the ocean, but my husband loves the ocean, and my kids love the ocean. 
Today was our babies first time to the beach, not because it's so far away but because he's been a terrible traveler thus far and we haven't dared. First off, TOTAL YAY, he slept the whole way there! We planned to leave exactly at his nap time and all of us intentionally cut off drinking any liquids ninety minutes before the departure time (yeah, we're a little hardcore about it but we'v…

A Good Investment

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Have you ever read the Mary Poppins books? We are about halfway through the second one, and I think they are OK, but not my favorite. However, I encountered one of my very favorite all-time book quotes during the first chapter of the first book. It stuck in my mind and has stayed there since I first read it, several months ago. 
“If you are looking for Number Seventeen…to begin with, it is the smallest house in the Lane. And besides that, it is the only one that is rather dilapidated and needs a coat of paint. But Mr. Banks, who owns it, said to Mrs. Banks that she could have either a nice, clean, comfortable house or four children. But not both, for he couldn’t afford it. And after Mrs. Banks had given the matter some consideration she came to the conclusion that she would rather have Jane, who was the eldest, and Michael, who came next, and John and Barbara, who were Twins and came last of all. So it was settled…” Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers, p. 1-2
This passage made me laugh, but it …

Dear Tired Mom

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Dear Tired Mom,
You really are doing a great job! I know it's hard. I know you can't think straight, see straight at times, but your doing great! You are strong. You are important! You are just the right women for the job!

Dear Tired Mom,
Don't neglect yourself. Don't stop showering. Put some effort into getting ready, I know it's tough but you'll feel better just doing a little bit for  yourself.

Dear Tired Mom,
Get support! We were NEVER meant to do this motherhood thing alone. Have a friend or family member babysit so you can get a nap, get a break, go out on a date. Ask the grandparents to help with the kid(s) and let them enjoy your baby(s) while you enjoy some time to yourself.

Dear Tired Mom,
You are great mom! Being tired, being exhausted, not being able to "do it all" only shows how much you really are doing right now. You already are doing so much for your child that everything less important can wait till they're a little older, or through the…

I'm The Mold-Breaker

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I'm the mold-breaker in my family.

I have mixed feelings about that.

I was raised in a close-knit, conservative family. With my parents both struggling with depression, my siblings and I were each other's everything, making us even closer.

But I broke the mold... I never intended to, but I always knew I was made for more; that I had a different calling on my life.

I was the first to have a boyfriend (at age 17).
I was the only one to get a tattoo.
I was the only one who lived overseas as a missionary.
Those seem pretty insignificant, don't they? But those were all a BIG deal to me and my family.

I stepped out and trusted God in strange ways. I committed to my daughters, to be "Mom" and everybody thought I was a little crazy.
My parents were very worried when I got engaged to their dad and there was a lot of difficult back-and-forth conversations. 


I am the only one who conceived with help of fertility treatments. 

I am the mold-breaker in my family.

It's not a fun positi…

The Struggle is Real...

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My last blog I talked about celebrating the uniqueness of our children. About how we should rejoice in their individual learning styles and strengths. But there is a flip to this. What about when you see the hurt you child feels when they see someone else succeeding where they are trying so hard and just not getting it? 



When my oldest was three I remember an evening where she was just sobbing in her bed because storytime was over and it was time for her parents to leave and she wanted more stories. “I just wish I could read!” she lamented from her toddler bed. Being the na├»ve, over-eager first-time parent that I was, I thought this was a sign that she was ready to learn to read. So I researched and bought a great book (Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons) and began school with her. 
Oh. Boy. 
The next 6 years (yes, SIX YEARS) where full of so much frustration and tears, for both my daughter and myself. How could this brilliant child, who spoke in complete and clear sentences…

She Really Surprised Me!

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I just sent my daughters off too bed.

The SWEETEST thing just happened and I had to share it with you.

So we homeschool and we love reading story books as a way to learn about time periods, historical figures, and points in history. We are about to finish up World History which we've been learning about for three years now. 

The last point we are studying, for now, is World War II. Such an important thing to learn about! We've gone over the brief history of it and are now reading a historical fiction book titled The Little Riders by Margaretha Shemin.

My girls and I just went outside to finish our chapter in The Little Riders before bedtime. We all cuddled together and all got intrigued by the plot. Then we went inside and talked more about the history. We started talking about Corrie Ten Boom and the real things that happened to people during World War II.

Then it was bedtime and we held hands and prayed together. I prayed thanking God for the sunshine, doing school with my girls,…

Uniqueness

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One of my favorite things about having multiple children is watching how they each develop differently. It’s amazing to me how children who got their DNA from the same two people can be so unique. Sure, they have their commonalities, but they are also each so individual. 
My first child said “Happy Birthday” on her first birthday. No joke. She had 60 words by the time she was 13 months old. My second did not have that many words, but like her sister she still talked before she walked, however many people didn’t realize this because she was picky about who she talked to. I remember picking her up from the MOPS nursery in the fall after she turned two (we take the summer off from MOPS) and the nursery worker delightedly told me, “Jane can talk now!”. I didn’t want to be rude, so I smiled and agreed, but internally I was thinking, “Yeah, she’s been able to talk for a long time. But I guess she just didn’t want to talk to you before now.”
  There are so many ways that our children can be…

Are You Connecting?

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How do you connect with your kids?

I was home nearly all day. I feel like I was busy all day.
Going from getting ready in the morning to getting the kids ready. Putting down the baby, doing school with the girls, calling my husband, and talking to a friend. The baby got back up, I got the girls down for rest time. I managed to get in a quiet moment before my husband got home.

Then it was date night (YAY!) and grocery shopping. Home again, put away groceries and get the kids to bed.
Phew! I know I was busy. I feel like I missed connecting to my kids somehow, even though I was home till after 4pm.
As I sat rocking my baby to sleep, him nustled against my chest, I thought back on today.
After the baby was awake and fed I got up my middle daughter. She, my eldest, the baby, and I all sat on the floor and chatted and smiled and connected. We laughed at the baby's giggles, we talked about the day ahead. It was sweet and fun and beautiful.
After my prayer time, my middle daughter (who babysits …

Is It True?

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With my two pre-teen daughters and myself, a lot of emotions fly around my house. A lot of feelings and a lot of drama at times. We FEEL things! We get upset, hurt, angry, and sad.
My husband does too, my son does too, but it's rarely as "colorful" as with my daughters and I. ;)
I found a little "trick" that makes a tramendous difference when it comes to dealing with my feeling and the emotional upheaval of my daughters. 
Let me show you how it works.
During a time of hightened emotions whatever we are feeling seems to consume us! "Is it true?"

"Is it true?" I ask my daughter as they say they don't feel loved when upset. They KNOW they are love and I ask "Is it true?" I ususally get a sheepish "No". Then I go on to tell them how much they are loved.
"Is it true?" I ask when my other daughter complains she's getting no attention. She adds to her statement "Well, besides you guys," and I smile and say w…

"Bad Baby"

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You know something that I don’t like about having a new baby? It’s the “Good baby” question. There you are, proudly showing your baby off to a family member or friend, and then they have to ask “Is he a good baby? Is he letting you sleep through the night? Does he take good naps?”
What is your answer going to be? Can’t they tell the answer to that question by the bags under your eyes and the mom bun on your head? A few babies fit this description, but most babies want to be held a LOT, and want to be fed a LOT, and many fuss a LOT. They are adapting to a new world, what do you expect? But what are you going to say?
“No, I think this one is broken. He will only sleep if he is in my arms. We are considering sending him back.”
“No, but I think I qualify as a good baby because I would gladly sleep through the night and take frequent naps. If only this ‘bad baby’ would let me!”
I think so many people don’t realize that the adjustment phase of a newborn to a whole new world lasts longer th…

Small Victories Are Awesome

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Motherhood has a lot of small in it.

My baby being in a miserable stage for most of the past two months makes things so hard. It's isolating and discouraging and the sleep depravation often lends itself to a bad attitude. It makes the small world of mothering a baby feel even smaller... and the hard things feel much harder.
But in the world of small things, there is also small victories:

MY BABY SLEPT LAST NIGHT!


That small victory feels so big and really awesome to me. All of a sudden my mood has lifted. I feel stronger, more capable of dealing with my emotions and difficult situations. I feel rested instead of exhausted. I can do more during the day because my baby is not feeling bad and is not as clingy. He's sitting on the floor playing instead of crying and clawing at my legs. 
I made it to my mom's group today. I had to leave quickly to get home to put the baby down for a nap, but I made it and it was wonderful! Getting to connect and talk to other moms is such an encoura…

I Wonder...

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There is a lot to be said about the wonder that children have. They are exploring the world for the first time and find every little thing fascinating. 
But the amazing thing about a child’s wonder is that, for a long while, they will get the same excitement about the same thing over and over again. Things don’t get old.
I live on the coast, where seagulls abound. But just about every day I hear an excited, “Look mommy, a seagull!” We also have tons of sow bugs on our property, but my boys are always saying, “Mommy! It’s a rolly polly! He’s my friend.”
I think that we grown-ups can often get so caught up in the daily grind that we forget to take time to notice all the wonderful little everyday things around us. It’s not surprising. We have so many responsibilities, so many thoughts and plans to take up our brain space. But what if we took time to stop and appreciate the little things?
When you are sitting and feeding your baby you could spend the time thinking about all the things yo…

"This Kid is Driving Me Crazy!"

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My child is crazy! 

My baby seems to be in the worst phase yet! 
He's teething, he has a cold, and he's making me crazy. I have slobber on my shoulder, I have snot on my face, and I'm so tired I can't see straight.

He's not sleeping during the day and he's not sleeping through the night. A perfect storm... Tired parents, tired baby, exhaustion and frustration running high... We're all sick right along with him and trying to accomplish even regular tasks feels like pulling teeth. It's a phase, I remind myself. It will pass. I try to keep in mind those truths but I still feel trapped at home. I still feel clawed on and overstimulated and worn.

Then that special book LOVE YOU FOREVER comes to mind. Where it says: 


"The baby grew. He grew and he grew and he grew. He grew until he was two years old, and he ran all around the house. He pulled all the books off the shelves. He pulled all the food out of the refrigerator and he took his mother's watch and f…

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!

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It's Saturday, I got to sleep in.

My husband took care of the kids and they all went into town. He woke me up when they got back saying "we have a surprise for you."I sleepily hauled myself out of bed, put on my bathrobe, my hair a complete disheveled mess, and stumbled out to the living room. My husband made me close my eyes and let me to the kitchen.

"Open your eyes!" He said. "Happy Mother's Day!" My husband and daughters said. The baby was sitting oblivious, but curious, in his high chair eating a hard-boiled egg. 
There on the table was two beautiful "Happy Mother's Day" balloons with shiny plastic covered in printed flowers. On the table a card from one daughter and a kite from the other. Makes my heart swell just thinking about it!
I sat down and they joyfully handed me their beautiful, humble gifts that they had bought with their own hard-earned chore money. I exclaimed over the kite my eldest had given and thought what fun I will…

Baby Blessings

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Oh what a multitude of baby blessings there are!
There's so much fatigue and crazy and busy in motherhood. There's so much getting through and making do... but OH, there's so many blessings.
My sons twinkling eyes as he greets me in the morning. Arms outstretched, full of joy and anticipation. His little tongue poked through smiling lips, so full of humor. The squeals of delight that come when he's excited, when he's overjoyed! The thump of his little chubby legs speeding across the floor in a crawl, following me across the house, certain he's about to miss something important.
Then there's the sad eyes when something goes wrong. He gets scared and he holds on tight. That love that swells in my chest when I see his need and get to be there to hold him. His little body snuggled close, then he's pushing back ready to get back to exploring his world again. He's gathered courage from my comfort and is back at it again.
Mischief, so much mischief and glee in…

Terrible Day

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So last week I wrote a blog about the importance of words, and how I was determined to use mine the right way. 

The day it was published was a terrible day. 
No matter what I did or which way I turned, I was tempted to speak the wrong way. I was so provoked. I failed so miserably. So much so that at the end of the day my five year old headed out the door and said he didn’t want to live here anymore. 

It really was a terrible day.
I am so ashamed of how I reacted to my circumstances that day. I let my emotions rule me, and that typically never ends well. I apologized to everyone several times, but the harsh words I had spoken can never truly be taken back. They exist as sound waves that go on forever. 
I kept resolving to do better that day. And eventually I think I did. By the end of the night a felt like a slightly nicer person than I had been. Slightly. The day ended with a fervent prayer that I would do better the next day. And I think I did. 
Aren’t you thankful that life has many…

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