Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Feeling Thankful

No matter what you think, it could always be worse...really!

I had the honor this week to care for a friends 7mos old son. He's crawling, and pulling up on every thing. He's sweet and smiley and was a joy to have (we're watching him again tomorrow too!). But having that third little around, WOW! It was busy, it was hard to balance every ones needs. It didn't help that it was pouring rain both days and our normal routine was thrown off because of the rain (we often head outside in the morning before naps = wears them out!)

But more than that I remembered how hard that age was for the girls. From the time they started crawling until walking, well it was just SO difficult. You had to watch them constantly(I mean I still do but it's different) they had these new skills but NO concept of danger or pain. As I watched little L explore and get himself in little predicaments it was a constant,"do I let him try to figure this out? or will he need help? If I let him go how will it most likely end?" and the unpredictability of his little movements...I forgot! How quickly they lunge and dive and sprawl- in directions I never would have predicted. No wonder I was so exhausted last spring! Not to say I was hovering and it was a constant in-your-face thing the whole time. But it was that undercurrent of the day- never knowing what he was going to find or think to try. On top of two girls who were a bit jealous of sharing their Mommie (though they really loved little L too! Loved on him a little too much which was another stress!)

That crawling and cruising stage is exhausting!

I loved watching him. I loved seeing how far Friendly (#2) has come since...since 7mos ago when she started crawling! I loved seeing how confident she is when climbing up on furniture and getting herself down. Granted, she's taken some ugly spills in the last few months. She has had more bruises from slips and slams than I can count or care to remember. But she's learned. And not just that, she and Lil Roo are just loving each other these days...Little playmates. They still fight. They still have times when they want nothing to do with each other. But there are glimmers of a friendship forming, and I love it.

So I'm appreciating the stage I'm in right now. And thanking God that I do not have 3 children under 3 years old. I also have a new appreciating for my girls, for the time we have together every day. Some days I'm bored out of my mind, sick of the same little toddler games, tired of the whining and the crying and the disagreements. But I am so thankful for this current lull in life. That it CAN be boring, that they are healthy, that the only real challenges we face are the frustrating (and annoying) immaturity's that come with being a toddler. What a blessing!

Feeling thankful..And hoping tomorrow isn't rainy...Being cooped up with 2 babies is hard. Being cooped up with 3 is much harder!

Monday, September 27, 2010


Parenting is like a corkscrew. When your baby is born you are at this very tiny point. Life is small there for a while. Every thing revolves around one basic thing, your baby. Learning who they are, enjoying them...Figuring out how this thing called parenthood is going to be.

And as your child grows, you circle up the corkscrew. Going around and around the same base issues for each child are always there, changing slightly with each circle up. Giving you the opportunity to explore and experience them further. Learning harder and deeper lessons of the things you failed to internalize before...Discovering new triumphs and joys as you watch and grow with your child.

And then you have another child and a new corkscrew is stuck into the bottle-of-life -that-is- parenthood. And around and around you go until you've got a good grip on the whole thing. Or ...Well I'll stop with that analogy because it ends a bit messy- drinking...I mean celebrating but ...yeah, messy.

I had one of those moments this evening...Digging back through the archives of my mommie blog I found this post. Ah, to learn this lesson more deeply. I so struggle with my emotional toddler. The crying, the big feelings the sometimes over the top-ness of the drama that is 2 [years old].
I don't' want to force her to stuff her feelings. Her crying or emotions are not a reflection of my job performance as her mother.

More later, need to put 2 little wonders in their beds.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Your Due Date is WRONG!

I really liked this. The author comes across a bit strong...But I can't say I disagree with her.

For the record and yes, TMI...Both my children were late according to my EDD (Estimated Due Date) by my LMP (Last Menstrual Period).

My first was "5 days late" according to LMP due date. And my second was exactly 2 weeks late according to my LMP dating.

Thankfully with #2 I had learned to follow my fertility signs. And realized that I have very long cycles (40 days then now more like 60-70 days long I guess because of breastfeeding) and that I didn't actually ovulate until day 27 of my cycle with a luteal phase of 12 days. she was born 2 days before my adjusted EDD.

Just interesting to me. Also as a VBAC Mama I am VERY careful about where my due date is placed, I don't want to be opted out (even of a homebirth VBAC) because I go way past due.

Okay all done posting tonight!

Interesting Look at baby Bonding...

This is a beautiful post on how a Mom of 5 bonded differently with each of her children. I loved reading it!

I have had VERY different experience with my littles. And even almost 3 years into this thing I'm realizing how the bonding continues. Just because it's ugly or hard "now" doesn't mean it will be for life.

Just wanted to share.

One more post today and then off to enjoy a few minutes of Thursday night TV with the hubby before I pass out! :0)

Formula By Prescription Only?

A friend sent me this article and asked me what I thought.

Initially I was like "yeah! I agree with it, I mean ideally." But as I thought on it more, and read her reply: which mentioned costs skyrocketing of the stuff and other logistical issues. I can't say I do...agree, that is.

My thoughts?

That [prices going up and people not being able to afford prescription formula] is some thing that would need to be addressed. But like I said if milk banks were more available and people could get human milk for their babies instead of formula, the formula by prescription would be a last resort (banks out of milk) and more women would probably really try to breastfeed. I don't know. It's all in the "ideal, perfect, world this would work" kind of thing. And since we obviously don't live in one. I think we should be pushing for the best lactation education possible for doctors going into the field. And for REAL information to be made available to Mom's.

Also some stiff restrictions on formula companies touting (in their commercials) how wonderful their product is and how good it is for babies, how close to breastmilk it is. (Though I understand if you look carefully at the cans they DO say that breastmilk is better.) When breastmilk is ALIVE. And has over 200 beneficial ingredients that formula companies haven't even figured out what they are or do! Seriously drives me nuts to watch TV with 'Lil Roo and come across a warm fuzzy formula commercial full of lies.

If a Mom is struggling: sore, alone, and TIRED. If she doesn't have the mindset that breastmilk is the first NORMAL food, that it's just "a better option". If all she hears is negative feed back from family and friends, and their wives tails and misinformation. If she's been through a few days or weeks of their pestering to feed the baby for her. Or negative feed back in general. Add to that sleep deprivation, and that gnawing fear of failure all the time (I've been there).

And then sees that calm, clean, pretty formula feeding CommercialMom. And adorable plump healthy FormulaBaby. of COURSE formula is going to look like "just as good as" an option!

If however she's researched, and weighed the risks (as an estimated 900 babies die a year because they aren't breastfed). If she has looked into the option of milk banks...If she has laid it out and realized, this is where my support system is. Has decided, "This is what my options really are." And she goes with formula- Good for her! She's made an educated decision and she can be proud of that!

I totally agree that I don't think it should be a decision people make for every one- that's wrong. I do think all Mom's should give breastfeeding a shot. And if that doesn't work I think all babies should have human milk. But I also realize that life doesn't fit into cookie cutters. We live in a society and culture FAR from how it was when we were created. And that the logistics of milk banking is kinda a big process. Also babies that would have died 200 years ago because of weak latch (due to disabilities, birth defects, whatever) or other common issues are NOT dying because of the widespread use of formula and bottles. It's easy for me (and that doctor) to make generalizations. But unfortunately generalizations often cause more damage than any recall least between Mamas.

So I guess now getting to type this out and really think on it. And having read what you shared...I don't think I agree with the idea so much. I think formula should not be some thing advertised so widely and so deceivingly. In a perfect world doctors would fully support and advocate Mom's to nurse MORE. Instead of freaking out and pushing supplementation to cover their behinds. Because supplementation equals LESS nursing, and MORE problems for Mama and baby. I think all Moms should be surrounded by other older, wiser and loving women. Women who will give good sound advice and support them no matter what. Other Mom's who will help them carry the load. But that's not always reality is it?

So for me, babies should be breastfed. But Mom's should be supported, truely. Because the reality is: cookie cutters just don't work.

I'm glad I got to think this out! Thanks C!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Being Part Of The Solution...Church Part 2

I had a fit of insomnia last night. And as precious as sleep is to me right now, I tried to take advantage of it.

One thing that was circling around and around in my head last night was: The majority of my children's' generation will be "un-churched".

I've personally really struggled with church- I was just ranting about it a week or so ago. I don't like "church" I hate how it's set up. I hate the straight lines of seats and the focal point on the "stage" think some of the worship songs are selfish and ridiculous. I've struggled to go, for different reasons (previously discussed), for a few years now. I hate how it splits every one up in to age groups, how it's all...churchy.

I was thinking last night about the next generation, about the world they are growing up in. I was thinking about the family and how for all the church (and I'm speaking of The Body of Christ not a denomination ) rants about how important family is- they certainly like to divide the family up in to little pieces on Sunday mornings.

We had a really awful, no good, very bad morning at our church on Sunday morning. We left early with screaming babies who were bored, couped up, and wanting naps. They were not happy about being out of their element. And we as parents were at meltdown point as well. We had a good loud and healthy argument (it felt good!) about it most of the way home...But even with all the talking and wondering "what the heck are we doing wrong?! Why are we so weird? Do we just go ahead and put our kids to scream in nursery on Sunday mornings? Would that solve this gnawing "AAAAGH" feeling?!? What are we supposed to do???" we didn't have any answers.

We believe our family is supposed to, at this point, be together on Sunday mornings. But church to our children at their little ages: is being held or shhhed through a bunch of "boring" (to them?) worship songs. And then herded off to a small room with a TV. They play with their toys and are frustrated and confused because Mommmie and Daddy don't play very well. They aren't doing any thing else important (not cleaning, or cooking, or using the potty- what gives?)...They are just staring at a fuzzy screen and distractedly handing us stuff and are frankly, acting bit grumpy. They also keep asking "did you hear what he said there?" or some thing equally confusing. And it's stressful and dull and painfully boring- especially for our extroverted 2 year old.

If I was 2.5 and 13mos I'd be screaming too. I wanted to scream on Sunday. It just feels so wrong and dumb, and pointless. And yet, we have a conviction that we're supposed to be at our church. This is where we're supposed to fellowship. But some thing in our church is broken. And we can leave it broken, or we could use our heads and have open hearts to being the solution.

We're still praying about this, we haven't talked to our pastor yet, I'm sharing this partially in faith, and partially to process. Last night I think I saw a pretty clear idea of what we're supposed to do. We need to meet a need in our family, and we need to bless the families in our church.

So we're praying about starting a pre-school class. As much as I dislike children's church, we need to take this step. I feel like it's just one itty bitty step towards what we'd like to see happen down the road.

We're going to take on the preschoolers (there are only a little over a handful) and see how the ideas, principles and dreams we have for a future "Family Service" would work out. I want to teach littles how to worship: REALLY worship. Not just sing silly songs, but teach them who the Holy Spirit is...Teach them how to pray, how to pray for each other, how to hear His voice. Teach them real Bible stories (We'd also be using "What's In The Bible?" DVDs).

Eventually, maybe, this would spread to the rest of the church. Have a "Family Service" before the regular service where we'd have a really active, busy kid oriented (but REAL) worship time, and then take time for parents to lay hands on their kids and pray over them, for kids to pray for their parents, we'd "break bread" together: pass out snacks for the kids while we share the message...It might not be perfectly quiet, there might be some big distractions. But working with the kids, keeping it real, real meat, and not one person talking while every one sits and is quiet...But kid asking questions, parents too: an open dialogue. Working with in what is LIFE as a family. Studying grace and how it works through out life, through out our relationships with each other. Just a real time for families to reconnect and FELLOWSHIP. It would probably be more like a giant, kind of crazy, small group time than a "service"...But THAT is what this generation needs to see: it's about relationship- not services and rituals. It's about fellowship and sharing in The Word. That is what church needs to be to this generation. Because it's the only way they are going to reach their un-churched peers...Seeing church, fellowship, as LIFE, not a place and a time, but LIFE.

I'm really excited to see where this goes. I'm excited to move away from churchy and into true fellowship...I'm excited and praying that our conversation with our pastor and wife will go well. That they'll catch the vision...That they'll (in all honesty) stop treating the family unit, as a second rate and unspiritual priority (as most of the western church does)- but as the treasure it is!

Children are a treaure...

And to prove my point a corney little treasure of mine:

She really has quite a beautiful REAL smile- we call this her cheesey grin...She puts it on to be extra silly!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Quiver Full Parenting...Thoughts on Family Planning

Growing up I knew a few QuiverFull (QF) families and some that were just extra large. One in particular was more along the lines of what this post is talking about. And another that was much more mainstream: birth control didn't work for them and they didn't have a peace about doing any thing permanent so they had 12 kids.

That really isn't all that important, and that post/article is a really good look at some of the glaring problems with the patriarchy movement. I can personally attest to how those teachings have wounded my own young marriage- and lead us to the place we're at. I am so thankful for Grace.

Anyway, it's kind of funny (in a God sort of way) that I came across this post (which I highly recommend you take some time to read through) as this is some thing I have been pondering a lot. Just last week I was discussing QF families and family planning with friends.

I know I just mentioned in a recent post that we are most likely going to have a large family. But we are not honestly setting out for one. I honestly don't want more than a handful of children. And yet I have the sinking (in a good way?) feeling that my Mothering career will involve many more than that. At this point, we're taking it one child at a time and we'll see where we end up. While we are personally opposed to hormonal and un-natural forms of birth control (another hard lesson for us). We practice NFP and FAM and are not ready for another baby at the moment. But as we learned (what a sweet little lesson she is!) babies happen. Even when you think you're (really really are) being careful! Sometimes you misread, back up methods fail and God just steps in and says "I want this one in you family, here you go!"

I've never really had the concern that I wouldn't be able to meet all my children's needs. I really am of the camp that if you're being responsible and dong your part in planning your family(hopefully via natural methods): and God sends them anyway: He will provide for them physically and emotionally. It might be outside the box. It might not look like how children in smaller families are provided for. It might not always be perfect. But does that really make it bad?
I grew up as fourth of five children. My parents were planning two, maybe three kids. But as there was a lack of NFP education back then (my Mom followed the cycle method [which isn't NFP but she thought it was]), and they just kept being surprised! I will say there were some things I didn't like about being in a larger than average family. I definitely carry some scars. But in the end I will say that my being from a larger-ish family has only strengthened and benefited me. Would I (will I?) be doing things differently? Absolutely.

And that is the reason I have this blog, to sort it out. I think the best thing a large family can do is practice Attachment Parenting. When you are keeping your babies close, in tune with their ages and stages. And have a strong Que-response relationship. You're in the habit of meeting their needs, of being aware when harmony is slipping. In planning your family (as much as that is possible) to that end: harmony in the home.

Will it always be there? No. Some weeks are just ugly. You pray for grace to fill in the gaps in every ones hearts. You take as many extra naps as you can squeeze in. You simplify down to the bare bones of existence, and you move forward. If it's always your goal to love, and admit your wrong. Your goal to accept the ugly times for what they are "swift and passing seasons". If it's always your goal to make amends when things snap. Always your goal to build up and make your home where every one is built up. Always your goal to maintain relationship: you can't really lose. Does that get harder with a large family? Undoubtedly. But large families don't (generally) happen over night, they evolve, and you learn as you go.

So here's (raising my tea mug...Well I would be if I wasn't NAKing) to whatever is down the road.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Balance This Way...Balance That Way...

It's incredible to me how life with littles is always changing. They are always changing so I guess it makes sense. Yet, it still catches me by surprise....That "why isn't this working??" moment always ending with the "ooooh duh, the game changed and I'm the last to find out." over and over, so humbling. On the bright side, it keeps things interesting!

Along with pondering what my "true, essential, and simple" priorities are. I've been thinking on balance. I have made some kind of big changes in my life this past summer. Some really positive and healthy things, and it's made some things more focused and clear for me. I have also faced some hard realities of "what is, is what is". As my littlest moves into more independence I've been thinking on this more and more.

I credit Dr. Larry Cohen (Playful Parenting- read it!) for this idea, It's never my intention to parent "fairly" but to meet every ones needs.

But needs, neeeds neeeeeds. There are so many at these ages! It truly is exhausting. And as they get bigger, I find it harder and harder to meet my needs. I thought the opposite would be true! Before it was (and still is to a large extent) emotionally draining. Now it's just physically and mentally exhausting. Now nothing is safe. #1 recently figured out how to open our old antique door knobs (a tricky thing for some adults so this is an impressive new milestone)...Thankfully none of them have locks so she can't lock herself in some place random. But it does mean she and her little sister can get into a lot of trouble together! When I think they are safe and separated, well I just can't assume such things any more. And I can no longer assume that I can use the bathroom and think no one will be able to join me. :0.
Or that the baby I left in the baby proofed room with the door closed while I take a 2 minute shower, will stay there. Or the toddler I had penned off in the playroom will be there while I take said shower. Working out, getting meals, getting out the door, doing any thing is so complicated at this point with two littles running different directions. And I mean RUNNING different directions.

And while I know that more baby proofing is in order, it simply isn't an option at this point. We will be moving in a few months and I will be doing every thing to simplify and safety-fy like crazy...But for now it's a lot of worry , and a lot of work.

And the things that I used to think were so important and essential in my parenting curriculum, when I just had #1...Or even a few months ago before #2 got so adventurous and busy. The mother I thought I was "back then" and the one I am today some times leaves me scratching my head (and laughing at my current ridiculous and fuzzy brained self).
I guess what I'm saying is there is "the way" and "person" I wish I could always be to my children. And the reality of what is. Because in the end, I'm just one person...Though my goal is to meet their needs: it isn't always possible and some one (whether it be me, we, or one of them) ends up losing just a little. And realizing that really is what balance is...You give 100%, and realize you aren't necessarily going to come out with that A+ on the other side of certain situations, and that's okay.

And I had more I wanted to say. And I'm not sure this made much sense. But a wall of exhaustion just hit hard. I have a very painfully plugged milk duct and am feeling weak and yucky... Mastitis looming? I sincerely hope not. Off to rest my tired body!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Embracing This Season? Church.

I was going to call this post "Season of Embrace" but thought it too corny, just saying.

I haven't been super involved with church the past 3 years...Really 4 years almost. I was very (VERY) sick with my first little and so the whole pregnancy it was a challenge to go to church. I have several memories of hovering in the old churchy bathroom stalls dry heaving. Oh so lovely. Then my wondrous baby was finally born, and I didn't have the energy to drag my self to church. Energy to spend the morning pacing the halls outside the sanctuary or nursing in the nursery (because that's how it works, right?) with a fussy baby who wanted to be home napping and away from all the people and strange sounds.

Well God lead us to a different church when she was around 8 months old. Again I was expected to nurse her in certain rooms, and leave her in the nursery. I nursed her in the appropriate places, but I stayed with her, or more she with me. Outside the sanctuary she'd run back and forth or sit and color with me.

At our new church I got the line "it's a season, she'll be off and flying before you know it! Take your time." they were definitely understanding... Even now at almost 3, my girl doesn't want to be left in the nursery. Every Sunday morning when we're heading out the door she exclaims. "But I don't want to go be with Miss M!"
There was a time when we were pushing for it, we tried lots of different things- all the things they recommend to help them adjust to spending time away from you. The anxiety it produced for our careful girl, just isn't worth it. Would she adjust if we just stuck her in there consistently? Eventually I'm sure she would. But not with out costing a bit of trust and a LOT of very loud, angry and scared tears. We know she's just fine being away from us when she's in her element (home) and with her Nana (my Mom)... So we know we CAN leave her. And would it really kill her cry in there for a while? No. But we want it to be her decision. Her realizing in herself that she is ready. Her feeling strong enough in herself (someone she's just discovering) to go in there and have fun and LEARN. Her decision to fly away and off to her own thing.

So more recently we've taken a more hands-off attitude: "You don't have to go unless you want to. We love to be with you and you can stay with us..You'll know when you're ready."

So we all sit (I use that term loosely) together in the "Family Room" and the girls pull things out of their "busy bag" and we try to keep them quiet and content while we listen to snippets of the sermon. In all honesty, it's frustrating. It feels pointless. By 10:45 our early risers are getting tired and starting to get either uber energetic, or fussy and meltdowny. The entire service is spent redirecting- peeling them from the walls (literally), and trying to entertain and keep the tears to a dull roar (my children have LUNGS!). Then to spend 10 minutes getting to "fellowship" (visiting over a quick bite and some thing to drink) while we corral toddlers, give them snacks (more snack as that was one of our tools in keeping them from going stir crazy the entire service) and tag team making sure they aren't tripping any one, or sticking their fingers in snacks, dumping things....It's kinda hilariously chaotic.

It's exhausting. And yet, we know we're supposed to go. Not because it's some religious observance. Or to get our children "in church" (ha!). But because God told us this was our church, go and reach out to other families. So we try. We're trying to be faithful in that.

And yet, there aren't (yet) families to minister to. We're the only young family in the church right now. There are a few single Mama's or ones whose partners don't attend- and I love visiting with them. But they don't have time to fellowship outside of church, and they have a few kids they are trying to care for on their own and corral in the same area of the building and talk to teachers... You get it, I don't get to visit so much.

Which leads me to WOMEN'S MINISTRIES. Women's Bible Study, Women's Brunch, Women's RETREAT...

None of which I can attend, well commit to attend.

This morning I was asked if I was attending next months retreat (Friday night, Saturday and Sunday until late afternoon). I can't, #2 is "still" nursing, I don't have a peace about leaving her. She would not understand my absence, I'm still her world. Again, "it's a season, maybe next year....bla bla bla." All very understanding. I think.

My littles will grow up. I bet this time next year RJ will be running off to her class barely looking back for a wave...Either way, it will happen eventually!

And I feel a bit misunderstood. While they all understand and respect my desire to mother the way I need to. I'm grappling with what my understanding of this situation is. Will this really be a short season?

In all honesty, I think this mothering tiny littles is going to be a LONG season. Like, a-big-chunk-of-the-rest-of-my-life kind of thing.

Ryan and I are dreamers. We have a lot of dreams and interests. And we are passionate about a LOT of diverse things. We have absolutely no idea exactly how God is going to use them all. We laugh about it a lot how varied and random all our interests are. But there is nothing we are as passionate about as our family, about our children. About families and children in general.

I've always loved children- I spent several months of my life working full time with them in the projects of a large west-coast city. I LOVE them. Even as a child, I loved smaller children- was always mothering on them...Was always the favorite babysitter (and started babysitting at a young age!).

Ryan and I knew before we were married (you know that instinctive know in your soul that you're called to some thing) that we were going to have a large family. I'm not talking 4 or 5 kids (which is considered large to most people? I consider large 8+ children, in all honesty) that a big part of our calling was going to involve children and raising them.

Let me say, I sincerely hope that no more than a few (4? 5?)of them will be from my actual body. :0. I despise how I feel when I am pregnant, gotta say the getting huge and then birthing thing has not been too fun. Maybe I'll get better at all of it as I have more? Either way, I think Ryan and I both feel that having like 12kids of our own (like they came completely from us) would be kind of ego-driven on our part (NOT saying that is the case of all extra large families- some times they just happen!)- we want to give children who are living in abuse and poverty a chance. Who knows how it will look, I hope that it will be very spread out so we can take each child and love it, fill it up like crazy until it's handling flying on it's on a big and then dive in and rescue another little.

I've always known God was going to send me children. Children to love on and raise to know Him. And that's where this conflict comes in: I'm not looking at 3 or 4 more years of this "they want to be with Mommie" stage. I'm looking at (I must reluctantly admit) a good ten to fifteen (plus?) years of hare and intense work in the mothering field.

I don't know how, I don' t know any thing for sure. But I feel like God's been preparing my heart in this area and helping me figure out how to keep things simple while I just have 2. So that when I have a lot more...Well there is grace for any thing He calls us to. But He gave us imaginations, and I'm using mine to keep things interesting and hopefully simple as my family grows.

I'm not sharing this because I'm anxious and trying to figure out all my chicks before they hatch I'm just processing. . Maybe I've got it all wrong.

But it's not all about having a large family, they other thing that kind of makes this interesting is that I am going to home school. And that "Oh they're off to school already!" thing really won't happen. My kids won't always need me as intensely as they do now. But then I'll have more babies who will...

I guess my point in writing all that out is some thing that some one asked me at church this morning. Just some thing about my joining a Mom's In Touch prayer group. The pastors wife really would like to see me get more plugged in, I know it, and I'm praying about what and how "more plugged in" will look considering the season. I know it is not that prayer group. It just is not going to work with the girls in the stages they are in. And M (pastors wife)understands where I'm at (kind of). I know she wants to connect with me.

So here I sit, it's getting late and this post is getting long. I was just interrupted by crying baby and while I nursed her back down, The only question I am trying to focus on is: If this is the season of my life for the unforeseeable future...1) what are my priorities 2) how can I fellowship and pray and enjoy time with other believers while keeping my priorities straight.

1) my priority and first responsibility is to my family. I don't agree with the saying "God, Church, Family." That is big in church circles. That is a very human way of prioritizing life. I don't think God works that way. God wants to be part of every thing I do, there is no separation to Him of spiritual and nonspiritual. He isn't in to cookie-cuttering every thing this way and that. He's not human. He can be glorified in EVERYTHING I do. And He has made it clear t0 me that I am to mirror His love and grace to my (His) children. I do that by meeting their physical and emotional needs and letting them know I am there for them. At this point in their little lives they need me a LOT. Their well being and happiness is very much wrapped up in my presence. At this point in my life my husband and I are working very hard round the clock caring for them. So any time we get together needs to be spent together (except when I'm processing and writing long blog posts, sigh. ;0)

Which leads to 2) How can I make fellowship happen with out sacrificing 1)?

Some thing I'm still pondering and praying about.

But is it wrong that I don't want my fellowship time to be with the women at church (so much), that I don't want it to be churchy at all really? That I just want to have friends to pray with, share and grow with? That I'm tired of churchiness? More things I'm pondering tonight.

And on that note, I'm closing this post.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


I pinch myself at how very blessed I am. My husband has his faults but he is ...Well he leaves me wordless a lot! And not because he's a chatty and loquacious soul! God has used him in so many ways, loved on me through him. His gracious patience and understanding...His encouragment and validation. His grace shining through. Ryan I really am so thankful for you!

God has been doing some incredible things. Healing, touching, stretching, talking...yes talking so much to hubby and I. It's like a breath of fresh air, finally the bend of the road has come. This long holding pattern (5 years almost of waiting), this heart breaking waiting, this "do you see us Lord? We're waiting." season is ending, changing.

We've been talking and praying a lot about where we're headed. What our next step is. We've been feeling more and more recently that we're on the edge...We're at the top of the hill of a roller coaster - hmmm, well we're not plunging to the abyss.

Okay maybe the end of the runway on a air craft carrier...Yeah, we're reaching the point where the runway ends and it's sink of fly: we're ready to fly! That little thing that they crank to the wheels to propel the plane super fast while it's preparing for take off (oh I'm SO technical)...Well God's been cranking it, big time and WHOOSH we're off. Some thing big is coming for our little family and we're sitting on the edge of ours seats just waiting. It's so humbling, frustrating and yes, exciting! And I'm so thankful, I'm not afraid. I'm not holding back for fear that whatever big is coming will be bad. His hand is on it.

I haven't talked about my relationship with Jesus much on this blog. In all honesty, I've kind of been ignoring it. I've had some big time wounds and a whole lot of questions. I'm still asking him some things. But I wasn't placed here to untangle the knots in my life...I was placed here to learn and grow in who I am in Him.

Last night hubbs and I sat up talking about the future. About where we might go, what we might do, who will be in our family in a few years (we assume there will be more people?). It seems the options and things we could head into are endless. Like our desire to bless other families, to minister to families. The fact that Hubby starts Bible school (distance learning) in January and what that will mean for all of us...How will things change, will this season be super hard? And we're moving and working and waiting. Will he go forward for more training and become a pastor? Will we one day start a church? Could I really do okay standing beside him helping him reach, bless, love and serve the body of Christ? We have a dream of starting a church, among so many other dreams. One that has a "family service". That specifically goes back to the root, FAMILY and how important ministry to the family is- as a whole. A service where children are actively involved in getting the real meat of Gods word. Sitting with their parents, joining in the discussion...Babies running around in the back or nursing and sleeping with their Mamas. While every one is together saturated in Gods word, the real stuff! No watered down tired Bible stories. Ryan's been putting together curriculum to walk school aged kids through the book of Romans- it's exciting to hear his brainstorms.

I guess this is kind of a processing "bouncing off the walls come on!" kind of post. I'm waking up, I'm excited! There's been talk of big changes, like moving to another state kind of changes. Absolutely nothing is set (ha!) we have no earthly idea where we'll be this time next year. But we're dreaming...And the state mentioned in conversations is the LAST state I ever want to move to (okay up on the top 5 out of 50, that's pretty bad!) ...So maybe it is God's ironic sense of humor and he'll settle us there just to show us wherever He puts us, isn't that bad.

As for my returning to work, I'm still praying about it. That's not a line, I've put in some applications and either not heard back of didn't feel a peace about accepting offers and moving forward. We have formulated a plan to hopefully be ready to move in January, or at least have an idea of what it will take to move by some where between then and mid February. We really have to get to the end of the year and take stock of our budget and get some things in order, feed our credit score so we look real good wherever we do end up going. It feels so far away, but I'm thankful that we have the time and resources to take this time, to move slowly...Prepare carefully, have all the ducks in a row. And as we wait we are making changes to help the wait be more bearable for all of us...Because when you know it's time to cross the river you just want to get over with so you can dry off. I don't think we'll ever dry off once we step in, I hope not any way...

And well that totally didn't cross well with my air craft carrier analogy. Ah well you get it- we're still waiting for take off...Or waiting to step into the river and watch it part?

hmmm. Either way, changes are coming!

Friday, September 10, 2010

A Milestone

Don't be surprised if I announce in a month or two that I'm pregnant again. :0D Life tends to be ironic and I packed up ALL my maternity and big clothing today!!! I have officially lost my baby weight, 65lbs gone! 5 more to go...but won't split hairs.. I'm THRILLED to be back in the pre-preggo stuff! Only took 13mos.

Not planning another baby for a while...But like I said God likes those ironies. :0D

Just celebrating.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

What Would I Have Said?

What I would have told myself? So much! You WILL make mistakes. You'll be a happier Mama when you accept that. God gave you instincts and they make YOU an expert on your baby, listen to them. Even if it feels like trial and IS trial and error. Think outside the box to meet every ones needs, including yours. (It's okay to hate it some times). All personalities are different and your baby is unique: you will fall in love with each child at different times and in different ways, there is nothing wrong with that. It doesn't have to be immediate.Ask for help. Take time to enjoy your newborn, they disappear so fast. Accept the season you are in, it will pass all too quickly. This too really will pass, seriously. Those breathing exercises you used in transition? They will be a life saver when your kids are pushing you to the brink. Not kidding. And your heart really won't explode over their amazingness, it really won't..?

Here's a video on what other Mamas would have said!