I’ll never forget my first Mother’s Day….I walked through my garage into our laundry room and saw a beautiful bouquet of flowers and a mylar balloon that read “Happy Mother’s Day.” I immediately burst into tears, not because of pregnancy hormones. I wasn’t pregnant…I desperately wanted to be pregnant but I wasn’t….I hadn’t just delivered my first born….instead we had buried our second born only a few weeks ago. They were buried in a grave marked inside me. Their obituary was shared with just a few close friends. Only a handful of people even knew her name, or had even thought to ask.
I have a confession to make….I am
slightly completely obsessed with paint samples.
Picking the color for baby boy’s nursery was no exception…I not only used my own collection, but the samples from a few friends DIY projects.
That’s 13 paint samples!!!
I know…. I know…its
kind of ridiculous….
Although not as ridiculous as being personally known by the paint lady at the Home Depot…”Back for more samples?” she smirks with a twinkle in her eye.
I secretly hope she thinks I am just a really fast painter and am already on to my next project…
But, I think she’s on to me….
Rene and I actually set the record for the largest amount of paint samples bought for one room, in our former town’s Home Depot… they should give you a coupon…or a punch card for that….buy 10 samples….get the 11th free!
I had finally narrowed it down to these four samples:
And I chose the one on the far left.
Than I went to the paint store – realized the sample card looked like a tan color…was nervous because my final selection was from a paint sample several years old, and I was afraid time had corrupted the color. The thought of buying another paint sample was going to send me over the edge...so I did what every paint sample connoisseur knows to never do…I bought a whole gallon of paint, in a color un tested on my wall…oooopppsss
Don’t worry its – no VOC paint
I gave the room one coat…left for a few hours…came back…and I HATED IT!!!!!!!!!!
I thought I was painting a light blue/gray…but instead it looked like an icy pastel blue…and since we weren’t using Disney’s Frozen as a theme here I
was disappointed had a complete meltdown…
I was like a momma bird who had lost all the sticks for her nest…
At church the next day…I found two friends with great DIY skills and even greater hearts. I gave them a hug, and silently pledged to not let go until they promised to come and tell me what color to paint baby boy’s room.
slight absolute look of pre-natal nesting hysteria in my eyes...they not only came and helped me pick another color but also helped me re-paint the entire room.
Ironically we chose a color that was in my final four
The winner is…. “Flint Smoke”….2nd from the left…however when I painted the sample on the tan wall it looked like Bright Teal (even brighter than it shows in this photo).
When I painted it on the newly painted wall, it gave a completely different dimension to the color which I absolutely loved!
Turns out I wasn’t a paint sample hoarding, hysterical Momma Bear after all. I just needed a new perspective to help me see that “Flint Smoke” was the perfect color.
My painting fiasco reminded me that sometimes when we are faced with a problem we just need a different perspective to help us find a solution.
I was thinking about all the times in life when a situation has seemed overwhelming, unjust, tragic, or impossible to my own human understanding, until I spent time with Jesus and I was able to understand His perspective and it changed everything!
I am reminded of Asaph’s words in Psalms 73. Asaph was a righteous man who served during King David’s reign as the head of all musicians.* He must have been a man familiar with singing praise to God and also humbly serving others in this role. I don’t know what was happening in Asaph’s life to make him write these words: Psalm 73:2&3
But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled,
my steps had nearly slipped.
For I was envious of the arrogant
when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
Maybe he had experienced betrayal by a close friend or felt frustrated by the evil that he saw around him. I think many of us can relate to Asaph’s feeling of injustice…feeling like evil is winning over the good…and it can feel overwhelming like Asaph describes in Psalm 73:17:
But when I thought how to understand this,
it seemed to me a wearisome task,
When Asaph encounters the presence of God his perspective completely changes: Psalm 73: 17b-18
until I went into the sanctuary of God;
then I discerned their end.
Truly you set them in slippery places;
you make them fall to ruin.
Then he sets his heart on the safest and most secure place in the universe: the faithful and unchanging character of God’s goodness: Psalm 73: 25-26
Whom have I in heaven but you?
And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
I also believe that God uses His people to help give us a needed perspective shift. If my friend hadn’t suggested re-trying the paint samples over the new color, I never would have found the perfect color! I thought we needed to go and get a completely new batch of paint samples. Fortunately her new perspective on my problem saved me from the humiliation of being “that indecisive preggie lady” visiting the Home Depot paint counter for the billionth time.
We are blessed with wisdom when we seek wise counsel!
What about you? What helps give you a perspective change? Anyone else out there a paint sample connoisseur? Have you ever painted an entire room and hated the color?
I had a meltdown on our babymoon.
A meltdown over puffy feet and swordfish.
It seemed like everywhere we went on our babymoon my husband, was getting a better deal…simply because he wasn’t pregnant. He raved about the medium rare steak he enjoyed at a new Orleans restaurant as one of the best he has ever tasted, while my meal was dry and uninteresting.
Then the next day, arriving in Florida, we went to a local restaurant known for their fresh seafood that came highly recommended by the bed and breakfast owners and it didn’t disappoint us my husband. My husband enjoyed one of the best seafood meals of his life and was able to choose from the three of fresh catches of the day. Three fish which are on the no-no list for preggie ladies because of their high mercury content.
I scanned the menu for other seafood options, there were none. Steak was out… because paying for a filet of well done steak to me is like paying Mc Donalds $30 for a Big Mac patty…the only option left was the breaded chicken…which tasted to me like an oversized chicken nugget.
Laughing over the discrepancies between our dining experiences, I went to bed dreaming of the beach.
The next morning I woke up with one thought, “how quickly can I get to the beach???!!!”
After breakfast we were packing our beach bag and Rene noticed that my feet – once delicate limbs – were now the size of an ogre and had swollen to resemble a puffed pastry. My ankles had also disappeared! Fortunately ankles aren’t a requirement for beach entrance so undeterred I kept loading up my beach stuff.
My husband, the rational, patient one in our marriage, put his beach towel down and started building a tower of pillows on the bed, for me to elevate my feet, turned on the fan and handed me a bottle of water.
“Babe, we have to reduce the swelling before we go out into the heat and humidity.”
Appreciating Completely annoyed with his loving concern, I plopped myself on the bed elevating my feet and scowled at Rene like a five year old instructed to finish their peas before dessert. After 2 minutes I enthusiastically said, “hey! I think they look better!” “Babe I still can’t see your ankles,” Rene said.
Commence: my 2 year old tantrum about pregnancy which in between sobs sounded something like…
“Everything you have eaten this vacation has been delicious, while everything I have eaten has been gross and now we’re here only 20 minutes from some of the most beautiful beaches in the country and I can’t see them because I’m pregnant and my feet look like Shrek’s….and I’m just sick of being pregnant and I just want a break from being pregnant…but you don’t get a vacation from being pregnant and….
I’m just tired of my entire life revolving around this baby!!!!”
I silently continued my sulking, counting the ways pregnancy was ruining my life:
Everything is now about him: my eating schedule, my diet, and my sleeping schedule.
Everyone is obsessed with him: how big is he, when is he due, what’s his name, is he moving?
I find strangers and friends in conversation, making eye contact with my belly, not my face.
In the same 24 hour period: I had experienced nose bleeds, nasal congestion, headaches, back aches, stabbing hip pain, round ligament pain, forgetfulness , discovery of varicose veins and cottage cheese lump thighs, fatigue, grouchiness, and unexplainable tears during cat commercials (maybe the most obnoxious pregnancy symptom so far, I’m definitely not feeling like myself if a commercial about cat litter brings me to tears).
If I experienced all of those symptoms in 1 day normally I would think I was dying.
I remembered a conversation with 2 awesome Momma friends who love their children really well, and welcomed me into the Momma club with these words,
“Charity, what you are entering is the great death: Motherhood. It is a death to yourself, but if you will let it, your death will draw you closer to Jesus and ultimately bring you abundant life”
I began to have some breakthrough in the days that followed..
I was dying, but there were some things in me that needed to die before I could become the kind of Mother I always thought I would be: kind, patient, sacrificial…you know not the kind that gets mad at their helpless unborn infant for needing food without a high mercury content because it creates such a giant inconvenience in my vacation food plans.
Gag…..no that’s not preggo reflux….but me gagging at the sound of my own selfish self – my selfishness that complains about sacrificing a few petty and temporal comforts for the good of the child they have begged God for.
I think there’s a good reason God gives us 9 months of inconvenience, life altering stuff to prepare for our newborns and its because we need a revelation and deliverance from our own selfishness – before 2 a.m. feedings, early morning poop explosions and no more holidays or weekends.
We’re all selfish…I’m selfish…clearly…and we all have layers of selfishness we didn’t even realize were there until something as completely reality altering as growing another human reveals it to you.
Lately I have wondered if my hips are preparing to birth the largest baby ever made, or seeking revenge from years of going unnoticed and being stuffed into skinny jeans. They
ache feel like they are being stabbed with a knife… all night long. Sleep over the past 2 months has been a tenuous dance between not needing to pee and finding the right combination of 10 pillows and muscle cream rubs, which can dull the pain for about an hour, allowing me to sleep for a whole 60 glorious uninterrupted minutes…before I get up and do the pregnancy night shuffle again: pee, rub on more sore muscle cream, rearrange 10 pillows too redistribute weight on opposite hip.
Its hard between 1 and 6:30 a.m. to remember – this is worth it – I am dying – but I am living more than ever before… I am sustaining and growing another life. As our sweet baby boy grows, may my selfishness die, so he and I can really live.
Ok Mommas and Dads! Have you ever felt like you were dying in parenthood? Why and how? Any preggo mommas with advice about alleviating hip pain while sleeping?
This summer one of my primary forms of exercise has been water aerobics. Most Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings you can find me and a pool of senior ladies sweating it out in the water.
Y’all these ladies are hilarious and adorable. My first day of class when one member found out I was pregnant, she was so giddy about my upcoming birth she made a special class announcement. This announcement was followed by 20 grandma shrieks and one woman volunteering the nursing skills of the 5 retired nurses in the class, if I went into labor and needed to deliver in the pool.
I had visions of the world’s easiest and shortest labor which progressed during water aerobics and climaxed with 20 grandmas and 5 retired nurses assisting in the delivery at my athletic club’s pool…I wondered if delivering there could earn us a free lifetime membership?
I can’t leave water aerobics grumpy for a few reasons:
– at least 3 participants tell me the same joke every time: “Oh, you’re starting your babies’ swim lessons early.”
– in spite of facing the end of their life and failing bodies and minds, there isn’t one grumpy person in the pool…I have concluded by the time you are older…you have realized grumpiness is a waste of time. Its really refreshing…especially when I walk in internally grumbling about my pregnancy aches and pains.
Every morning this week I have waddled into class with the grace of a city girl who rode a horse for 8 hours.
However, when I get in the pool – I experience one hour of sheer bliss: weightlessness!
60 minutes pass where I posses the grace of a ballerina instead of the toddle of a hippo. My fluid strokes stirring daydreams that I am once again able to buckle my shoe, paint my toes and reach my calves while shaving.
I told Rene the other night that every penny of our gym membership is worth it to suspend the environmental and physical factors that make weightlessness impossible and experience the lightness and freedom of the water.
Finding peace in adversity and trial feels a lot like achieving weightlessness in your third trimester: improbable.
Yet what is improbable in any other environment suddenly becomes reality every time I step in the pool.
My environment changes my reality. The actual circumstances may not change but my abilities and perceptions of reality change.
Recently a friend was praying for me because I was feeling anxious and stressed. As she prayed she said, “when you partner with anxiety, your authority and power in prayer are diminished.”
I thought about her statement the rest of the day. I was praying for a circumstance to change but I did so in the midst of panic, fear and wanting to control the situation through my own striving.
I couldn’t hear what God was saying or experience peace…because all I could hear was my own mind telling me “THIS IS A GOOD TIME TO PANIC!,”
I believed the enemy’s whispers, “anxiety will help you get through this.”
I may have been praying continually but I was also incessantly panicking.
I needed an environment change to be able to partner with Him in prayer to see miracles happen.
I wanted to pray “please help” and believe that He actually could and would.
I told the Lord I wanted to partner only with Him…His peace, His rest, His ways, His power, and His Bigness.
When I am in an environment with Jesus, where He is the King, and I am glorifying Him even above what I see or understand…my perspective changes…along with what I see, believe or understand about the situation.
A prayer I have been praying frequently is, “Thy will be done, Thy Kingdom Come, On earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10)
if I pray this yet carry anxiety and panic, I am working directly against what I am desperately crying out to see.
If I believe that purity, peace, rest, and redemption are available in heaven and believe that Jesus did not instruct us to pray, “on earth as it is in heaven” as a false tease…then I have to believe that it is possible to experience the perfection, justice, hope, and joy that is in heaven…here in earth…here in my circumstances.
When I trust in nothing…but the blood of Jesus…I will see it.
I will experience the buoyant glory of peace in the midst of my waiting. And my spirit can feel as weightless as a 30 week preggo Momma in a Texas summer floating in cool waters.
Any other past or current preggo ladies who can relate to the sheer bliss of floating in the pool during pregnancy? Anyone else struggle to believe that we can experience what is in heaven, even while still living here on earth? What is our role in experiencing peace in the midst of trial?
Last week my niece and nephew “officially” joined our family! I have referenced a few times that my brother and sister in law have foster kiddos and these sweet babes are now officially a part of our family forever.
Wow! What a happy day it was when I got this picture text on their adoption day!
I was so overcome with joy and thankfulness for these precious kiddos “officially” joining our family, that I found myself spontaneously weeping in the Home Depot parking lot, folding laundry, in the middle of a Walgreen’s aisle.
I’ll never forget the day I first met my niece and nephew. Rene and I had flown to meet them last August and they were piled in the car half asleep when they picked us up at the airport.
I peaked my head in the back seat to catch a glimpse of my niece who opened her bright hazel eyes, and mischievously grinned at me behind the window pane revealing her twinkling zest for life I love so much about her. I looked at her baby blonde haired brother, sleeping so still beside her. He looked like an angel babe with his tow head and chubby cheeks.
Right then, I decided I was their Auntie, it didn’t matter that our gene pools were different, I didn’t care that I hadn’t seen their first days or knew what they looked like as infants. I wished I could have been there, but the lapse of time between their birth and our meeting was inconsequential in the depth of my love for them.
I was made to love them.
And then we left, and I couldn’t stop thinking about them. Daytime, nighttime, they were as close as my next breath. When I thought about the possibility that I may never see them again, I would cry and then pray a prayer I had never prayed before, “Jesus please put these children in our family forever.”
One day, as I was praying for my niece and nephew, I told God that it really hurt- the waiting and wondering if they would be able to be adopted into our family. The longing in my heart to know for certain they could never be taken away from our family felt almost overwhelming.
He said “I know exactly how you feel.” I was praying the words from the heart of Our Father.
They are more than words to Him – they are His essence and heartbeat. Our Father God has been separated from all His beautiful children, separated not by His choice but by the sin we each have chosen.
His cry is “Come back to your Father, you are made to be in my family forever, you belong to me”
Friends have asked me how our family feels about my niece and nephew being adopted and I can confidently say we are absolutely thrilled! We are thrilled and they are cherished with a unique sweetness from a newborn biological child…because I saw their faces before I knew they were ours. I hugged them, read cherub ears bed time stories and kissed their flushed cheeks – and then I asked for them.
They were chosen.
It is someone’s adoption day today. But the adoption you are entering isn’t the kind with state legal documents , a courtroom judge and stuffy city building. The setting for this scene is inside the truest of place in your soul where your gracious and compassionate judge says “you deserved separation from me because of your sin, but I have made a way for you to come back into my family through the death and resurrection of my perfect son Jesus. ” Your adoption will be documented inside your heart and written forever in the Lamb’s book of Life (Revelation 21:27).
If your heart is crying, yes! I was made for more, I want to be reunited with my Father and adopted into His family forever….
There is no better opportunity than right now to say, yes to your Father who has been longing for you.
If you have already been adopted into the Family, then I am praying your soul would be re-awakened to the glory and joy of your salvation – that you were an orphan, but you are no longer and there is a place of secure and intimate belonging with your Father that will last through all eternity.
Adoption was our loving Father’s idea. He designed and created it and without it we would have no hope.
That’s the way it was with us before Christ came. We were like children; we were slaves to the basic spiritual principles of this world. But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.” Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child. And since you are his child, God has made you his heir.
Would you fall to your face with me in gratitude, stopping to let the wonder of the cross overwhelm you….and would you let it change you again… when we have a revelation of what He has done:
Instead of self righteous indignation over the people’s sin and brokenness…. we see an orphan looking for their family.
Instead of keeping our faith quiet to not “offend” anyone… we extend the invitation into the greatest family reunion there will ever be…happening in heaven.
Instead of losing ourselves to the temporal and trite…. we remember life isn’t about us, but about reuniting our lost family so no one is without an opportunity for their own adoption day.
Instead of giving up when we are rejected, despised or ridicule…we boldly come before our Father and say “Daddy, bring them to their adoption day.”
I don’t want to forget the joy of my adoption day and when I think of a certain twinkling hazel eyed little girl and chubby tow headed baby boy, the newest “official” members of our family… I don’t think I ever will.
How has your adoption day changed you?
How do you respond to pain? Do you silently muscle through it? Clenching your jaw and holding silent stress in every muscle in your body? Are you a screamer (like me) who feels compelled to verbally process every ounce of pain you are experiencing?
Some people seem to almost enjoy the process of pain…friends who train for tri-athletic events on Saturdays come to mind.
I don’t enjoy pain and I don’t look for it. I am careful to avoid pain. I do yoga, pilates and water aerobics. Throughout junior high and high school I avoided contact sports and participated in theater. I decided to be the team d.j. instead of a player on our church’s kickball team….yes I am terrified of a ball hitting my head and yes I am in my 30’s. I don’t like dogs that are big, bark, or jump on you and I have been known to cross to the other side of the street when I hear one barking.
Emotionally I try to avoid pain by keeping everyone happy…this works…. so well never. I am also more inclined to apologize for someone else’s mistake than call them out and watch them suffer a consequence or work through awkward tension.
You may be surprised to hear that this self admitted pain avoider is planning and preparing for a natural, drug free child birth…I shudder a little whenever I say that phrase.
I am not a woman with a list of 100 reasons why epidurals are evil and believes there is any greater glory to be found in a natural vs. pain medicated childbirth. Any woman who has gone through the challenges and difficulties of pregnancy and delivery of a child whether by c-section, naturally or with drugs is my hero.
I have read my fair share of articles on the benefits of an epidural free delivery, but that is not the reason we are choosing that route.
The reason we are preparing for a drug free, natural vaginal delivery…comes down to a conversation between me and Jesus.
Charity: Jesus, what kind of childbirth do you want me to prepare for? (please say epidural, please say epidural, please say epidural)
Jesus: Natural delivery without an epidural.
Charity: So maybe I should ask again….Jesus, what kind of childbirth do you want me to prepare for? (please say epidural, please say epidural, please say epidural)
Jesus: Natural delivery without an epidural.
Charity: Maybe we should talk about this later.
We did talk about it later…having the same conversation over and over again, until one day, I reluctantly surrendered. “Ok, Jesus, if you are saying to prepare for a natural delivery without an epidural then that is what I will do. But let the record show, I think this is a horrible idea.”
Fast forward this week’s Bradley Birthing Class, where we were welcomed to class with the announcement that we were going to have a labor rehearsal…rehearsal….that’s one word a theater nerd understands.
How do you properly rehearse for something as dreadfully unique as labor and childbirth? Turns out…you can’t…. but there are different relaxation and breathing techniques that you can practice with your birth coach (my awesome husband, Rene) to be more prepared for labor.
Our labor rehearsal consisted of each woman being given a bucket of ice water. We were instructed to lie in a comfortable position and close our eyes. Then our teacher told us to put our hand in the water and not to remove it until instructed. For the first round of our ice bath our birth coaches were not allowed to touch us or talk to us. I also had no idea how long my hand was going to remain suspended in ice.
Going into this exercise, I thought it would be a breeze, I mean I’m from Washington our definition of a nice day at the beach is lower 60’s with a light drizzle…I can survive cold…
That was one of the worst and longest 60 seconds of my life. My husband told me later he thought I was going to start crying… because I WAS! It took every ounce of energy and self control I had to not remove my hand from the water.
I kept trying to do all the relaxation techniques they have taught us in Bradley class, breathe deeply, think about a beautiful beach, focus on breathing air into the tense parts of your body…yeah..right…all I could think was: “ow, ow, ow…when is this torture ending and this exercise must be like freshmen chemistry….designed to weed out the weak from strong…alright Mr. Bradley…you found me out…I’m the weakest link…I’m out of here, this was a huge mistake, I can’t make it through natural labor if I can’t endure my hand sitting in ice water.”
The worst part of the experience was feeling so alone. I knew people were around me, but no one, including my husband could talk to me, touch me or give me an indication of when the torture would end.
The second round was better, because our instructor gave us a verbal countdown of how many seconds remained.
The third and fourth rounds felt like heaven, for one simple reason: my coach could talk to me and touch me.
The activity went from torture to bearable with the insertion of one variable: encouragement!
I left the activity believing that I could actually survive labor without an epidural and realizing how thankful I was that Rene was going to be by my side because he is such a great encourager.
I was thinking about the power of a simple encouragement the rest of the night and it reminded me of earlier that day when I was at the grocery store.
I was headed towards the toilet bowl cleaner when I noticed a woman walking slouched with deep weariness. I felt the Holy Spirit nudge my heart to go and ask her if there was a way I could pray for her.
After working through my fear of how awkward and weird it would be to stalk someone in the dairy section and then talk to them about prayer…I went ahead and found her and asked if there was a way I could pray for me.
She responded by telling me I should probably get out some paper, because her lists of requests was that long.
What she was walking through was one of the most difficult situations I have ever heard. At one point she stopped, looked at me and said with tears in her eyes, “thank you so much for asking” and then she hugged me in the middle of the dairy aisle like she had needed a good hug and a long cry for a decade. I cried too and I prayed, asking Jesus to heal every place that needed healing and encouraged her that “Jesus loves you and He has His eye on you.” And then we both cried and hugged again next to some very confused customers buying their eggs.
She told me that day she had no idea how she would even make it through the end of the day. She felt so defeated in every way: physically, emotionally and spiritually….
But the simplicity of a question, “can I pray for you”
The presence of another human being listening to her story.
An embrace between 2 strangers, reaching beyond social norms, to simply say – I hear your pain, I care and I believe in you.
The power of a prayer, 2 people crying out to the only One who can fix and heal what was so broken…
It gave her the hope she needed to persevere through the rest of the day.
I wish I never missed or ignored an opportunity to encourage people. But I do.
I miss them because I am thinking about my own problems or agenda. I miss them because I am checking my phone. I miss them because I forget to ask, “Father what you are doing right now? How can I be a part of it.”
We need each other, we weren’t made to journey alone.
If you want to be a hope giver, find someone today with their lives stuck in a bucket of despair, in their real life drama starring pain and discouragement and offer them encouragement.
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:15- 16
I’m curious to know other reader’s labor experiences? How did you make it through? Who were your main encouragers through the process? Do you find yourself, like me, distracted and often unaware of those around us needing encouragement? How has someone encouraging you helped you through a tough time?
Its been a while…its definitely taken me longer than I ever anticipated to get back to blogging. It may have been the move, transition or possibly a case of pregnancy brain – such an awesome excuse for when you forget names, events, to blog, or even basic recipes…..last night I assaulted our corn on the cob with garlic salt before putting it into the oven to bake – YUCK! – y’all I have been making corn on the cob at least once a week this summer and I have never dumped garlic salt on it, but for some reason I confused salt and garlic salt when I was seasoning the corn.
Speaking of excuses that may or may not be legit: yesterday my hubby spent his Father’s Day fulfilling a preggo craving for my first snow cone of the summer at a local place called JJ’s, that is kind of a big deal around here. I got my favorite flavor, Caribbean Splash with a scoop of Blue Bell Vanilla Ice Cream on the bottom! YUM! Anyone else love snow cones in the summer? What’s your favorite flavor? Any other preggo ladies notice your “pregnancy cravings” may be suspiciously similar to your pre – pregnancy cravings?
Here’s a highlight reel of the past few months since our move:
We are having…. A BOY!!!!!! Wow was I surprised!!!! I was 99.9% sure we were having a girl and so it seemed was everyone else – except my hubby – who is still glorying in his correct guess!
Since we held our gender reveal party close to Easter we had an Easter egg hunt, where egg hunters looked for one egg that contained a special chocolate bunny. This bunny had either a pink or a blue ribbon on it.
My Pregnancy has been going really well. Baby boy and I have been very healthy which is a huge blessing. The only major issue I have had is back and hip pain, due to all the stretching and growing my body has been doing the last 2 months. Exercise and warm baths have really helped and I found a miracle for my sleep, which had been causing me a – its called a Snoogle!!!! Yes…have a little snicker at that name, but this body pillow is my new best friend and there is nothing like a snuggle with my snoogle!
Here is our little man at 20 weeks….look at his cutie hand holding his ear….eeeekkkk I could just die he is so sweet!!!! We have already decided he has my nose.
Its hard to believe that I ever looked like this…..and even harder for me to believe I called that a baby bump!
Here I am at 24 weeks, with a legit baby bump!
This is from our babymoon in Florida! Ahhhh! I love that place! I am curious if anyone from a generation or 2 ahead of me went on a “babymoon?” Whenever I mentioned to someone older than me that I was going on a babymoon I was met with a lot of confused looks.
We tagged our babymoon onto the end of a business trip for my hubby and passed through Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi before making it to Florida. It only took 3 hours to drive through 3 states – but it took us more than 5 hours to get out of Texas…no wonder some days I feel claulandphobia (claustrophobic because I am landlocked)
Funny story from our babymoon. One night I wanted some de-caf coffee to go with a slice of cheesecake I had just bought. We decided to go to Krispy Kreme, and the drive through line was out of the parking lot. We went inside and the line was almost out the door. I knew we were in a small town but I thought surely there must be something more exciting to do in a Florida beachtown on a Friday night than to get donuts but I just figured Floridians loved their Krispy Kremes. Then we saw this sign and it all made sense! What a great night: free donuts are every preggie ladies dream! And in case you were wondering – I definitely ate that sprinkled doughnut followed by my delicious cheesecake.
Anyone else headed to Florida this summer, or have you ever been? Where did you go? We went to Pensacola and had a great time! Any other preggie ladies or former preggie ladies share in my suspicion that their pregnancy cravings are just a reflection of your typical treat cravings? Or have your taste buds dramatically changed in pregnancy? Anyone else have a local snow cone stand they are devoted too?
Wow, it feels like we haven’t chatted in forever. I hope you are doing awesome!!!! There has been so much going on the past week and a half that I haven’t had a chance to check in…so this should be an action packed update!
After saying good – bye to some of our favorite people and places in Corpus Christi, we have officially moved!
I have no pictures to share of our house covered in wall to wall boxes, because lets be honest I would like to forget that ever happened..especially since we are renting so I know we will have to do this all again someday. We were so blessed that my hubby’s company paid for movers – wow, movers – can I just say having someone come and pack your stuff, and then unload it is my favorite way to move – especially when you are preggo. I think I would still be back in Corpus Christi packing if it hadn’t been for that present from Jesus!
How are Jaxon and Sparta adjusting to their new life ????…all they needed was
our their couch and our their favorite blanket to feel right at home.
I think its unfair for me to lose couch access because of these sleepy felines…but they look so cozy I don’t usually have the heart to move them….especially when we experienced a freak March ice storm our first week living in Central Texas.
I am so glad you didn’t see I wish you could have seen my husband and I frantically searching for something to scrape the ice off the car at 6:30 a.m. Just a quick note for all the Texans who don’t have ice scrapers – giant barbeque spatulas work great!
And now for the most exciting part of this post…Baby Bean Update!
I am in week 12, which according to some people is the 2nd tri-mester although some sources say its the end of the 1st trimester. What do you think?
Being an eternal optimist I have been saying that I am at the beginning of the 2nd trimester…anything to distance myself from nausea, food aversions and feel like I am making progress. I can’t believe how much baby been has grown since Week 10:
Week 10: Baby Bean is the size of a Kumquat, which I learned is a garnish for beverages. And at $7 a pound…that’s all I could use it for. Try saying “Kumquat” 10 times fast without smiling…Its impossible to not smile when you are repeating that silly word!
Week 11: Baby Bean is the size of a Lime!
I like this pic because you can really see my baby bump =)
Week 12: Baby Bean is the size of a Plum.
Thanks so much for all your prayers for a healthy pregnancy! We met with our doctor before leaving Corpus for a last visit (so sad to leave her, she is truly amazing!) and she said everything was going really well!
We did find out at that visit that my iron levels were really low, which explains why I needed as much sleep as a 1 year old. Having never made it this far in pregnancy I didn’t realize that needing 10 – 12 hours of sleep at night and a 2 naps every day, while still feeling fatigued wasn’t normal. Ooooppppsss… Thank you Jesus for my Iron prescription, the first day I took it last week I felt like a different person!!!!! I still enjoy squeezing in a nap everyday but I don’t need as much sleep and I have lost the feeling that every movement I make is as difficult as trudging through mud.
More beef for me I guess…good thing I live in Texas!!!!
Are you on Spring Break? What are you doing for your break? Have you experienced iron deficiency before? When did your first tri-mester symptoms disappear??? – I am still waiting for that amazing 2nd tri-mester energy burst everyone raves about!!!!
Today we have a special guest post from Elizabeth at Beauty Observed, in addition to being a wonderful writer, Elizabeth is also a stunning photographer and shares her work here today. Thanks for being with us Elizabeth!
The other day, I was scrolling through my facebook feed and I came across this quote by Erma Bombeck. Have you heard of her? She was a humorist who wrote from the 1960s thru the 1990s. Anyway, the quote was “Worry is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it doesn’t get you very far.” There’s a Bible verse to back that up, too. Luke 12:25 says “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?”
I think the quote about the rocking chair spoke to me because worry seems to go hand-in-hand with fear and I’m trying to rid myself of fear this year. Fear starts out as a cold, little thought and blooms into a full-fledged worry-fest. We wring our hands and play out a number of “likely” scenarios. And where does it get us? Nowhere. We are sitting in that rocking chair, rocking as fast as we can in our own efforts.
- It doesn’t usually come true. People have extraordinary imaginations and we tend to spin these terrific tales of woe. I can match you imagination for imagination. Most of the time and energy and upset stomachs I’ve put into worrying never come to pass.
- When things do come to pass, He is faithful to walk through them with me. Please know that I do not say this flippantly. My father died unexpectedly when I was 33. I’ve suffered infertility, miscarriage, premature births, and adoption loss. And then there’s all that other daily life stuff. God has never NEVER left my side. He has held me while I’ve cried and the Holy Spirit has ministered peace to me. He IS faithful. He works everything for good. Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
So what can we do?
Philippians 4:6-7 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
I Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.
Psalm 42:5 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.
Philippians 4:8-9 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
So let’s use that rocking chair for what it’s really meant for. Sitting and talking with friends. Rocking babies and small children. Spending an evening on the front porch. Gazing out at the ocean. Much, much better uses, I’d say.
Elizabeth Nicholson has a passion for photographing and sharing the beauty God has created. She’s also the the wife of a musician and a veteran home educator. Elizabeth has two children still at home. Her oldest is an English teacher. You can find Elizabeth at beautyobserved.com, and on facebook, twitter, pinterest, and instagram.
I hope you have been having an awesome week. We are in the midst of our house being packed for our big move on Saturday!
Today I am guest posting about my experiences with finding God after Tragedy.
Here’s a little teaser…..
An ocean is a beautiful beast – vast, powerful, unending.
Whenever I go to the ocean I am always overwhelmed by its power, beauty and consistency.
The ocean supports a complete ecosystem, an underwater planet teeming with fish, crustaceans and large mammals. It does so in spite of storms, climate change, season and geographic location.
Its consistency is in the tide, it comes in, it comes out….Low tide or high tide…it is always there.
When I lost 2 babies to miscarriage during our first year of marriage, I had an ocean’s depth of questions:
Read the rest here