December 30, 2011

2012 :: Time to be filled.

I was going to write a post about my resolutions for 2012.  I don't know why... I've never made resolutions.  But it's what people do, right?  So, I was going to write about things I intended to do.  Go to bed earlier.  Read more.  Be better about cleaning house. 

But these are all superficial.  And they don't truly reflect the change I desire in my life... my heart and spirit.


It's hard to really be honest sometimes.  But I've been in a big-time spiritual funk the past few months.  I'm allowing my heart and mind to be filled with junk.  With TV shows that encourage many of the things I know God hates.  With time gone wasted on the internet instead of productive.  With hours gone by that I haven't been intentional about connecting with my husband and son.  I haven't been guarding my heart or filling my mind with things that are worthy, true, right, pure, lovely... and I can feel the distance.  I've been lazy when it comes to taking care of me.  And I can't really give myself to others if I'm not filled.

I'm really not saying this to throw a pity party.  I think there are many many young moms who, like me, are tired, and find it easier to be mindless instead of mindful.  I'm saying this because I have tasted what it is to abide and I'm am now going to choose to turn fill my life with goodness instead of worldly emptiness. 

I read this today from Sally Clarkson's blog (author of many excellent motherhood books)... and it convicted me.

My concern, today, is that many young moms, exposed to contemporary culture, don’t even have a model or understanding of what is good. Christianity is mediocre and weak and insipid because the souls of believers are as empty, shallow and contaminated as the fallen culture that surrounds us. One cannot watch garbage and violence and adultery and not be effected. One cannot feed on what is shallow and not become shallow.

In the same way that cancer and diabetes are growing rapidly and devastating many lives because of the intake of what is unhealthy in our foods, products and environment, so our souls will die and become ill and infected if they are always surrounded by garbage, pollutants, contaminants.

One cannot pass on what one does not himself have, and so if we want to pass on health and beauty and goodness, then we ourselves must discipline ourselves to invest and pour into our minds and souls truth from scripture, seek out wise people, read great books and thoughts as well as protect our souls from all that is base.


So, my goal for 2012?  To be serious about cultivating my soul.  To fill my, and my family's, life with things that are right, good, noble, pure, worthy... and to be intentional about this.  To pour into my child(ren... there will be TWO in 2012!) the love of Christ.  To stop just letting time pass by with mindless emptiness.

A lot of my previous "resolutions" will fit into this.  I do want to go to bed earlier so I can wake up before Jude and have the opportunity to get into the word.  I do want to read more... because this means filling my mind with uplifting things, and it means I am not on the computer or watching TV.  I do want to be more productive around my house.  It is a way to serve my family... and my lack in doing this shows a lack in my spirit to serve.  You may not think the state of your heart is reflected in your home, but often, for me, it is.  I do want to have intentional quality family time.  We need date nights.  Jordan needs daddy/son nights.  I need me/God date nights... time away to read/renew/pray.

Lots of goals... but all very good.  It will be hard to say, "no" to many of the empty temptations I so often fall into.  But it will be so worth it.

What changes do you want to see in your heart, family, life in 2012?  I'm not talking weight loss (although we all know that will be on the list sans baby #2).  But what about you?  How do you need to trust the Lord this next year?  What is He asking you to give up?  What is He asking you to lean on Him for?  How do you plan to pour into your kids?  How are you going to make sure you are abiding?  What will you be reading in 2012?

I really hope to blog more about this specific topic.  Intentional living... motherhood... the ups and downs and challenges and triumphs.  I'd love it if you all would share and join me.

December 29, 2011

Dear Jude :: 9 months


Dear Jude,

This past month has been a whirwind!  It was like you suddenly started understanding the world and it is SO much fun to see you grow.

You were not in the mood for pictures today!
You now say "mama" and "dada".  You say both appropriately, but everything is "dada".  You understand so much.  If I ask, you will point to the light, the Christmas tree, your cup, the puppy, your bottle, Mama, and Dada.  You point to your favorite characters in your books.  You got a little baby cell phone for Christmas, and you will hold it up to your ear just like Mama and Dada.  The other day you took your brush and started brushing Dada's hair.  You also give kisses on command.  You are just growing up so fast!!

Do we have to do this now???
You had your 9 month Doctor's appointment today and have grown so much in the past few months!  You now weigh 20lbs 4oz (50th percentile) and 28.5" tall (60th percentile).  You are no longer in 9 month clothes... all 12 month over here, you big boy.  You drink about 24-28oz of formula a day.  You are eating a lot of finger foods, but still get puree's once in awhile.  Your favorite is blueberries.  You'll eat them without fail.  You also ate half an avocado today!  You'll eat most anything so long as you are feeding yourself. :-)

Spaghetti dinner tonight!
You are now crawling!  Well... in your own way.  You still do the army-crawl, but you are one fast little bugger.  The doctor said that all babies crawl different and if that is the way you've decided to get around that is perfectly normal.  Of course your preferred way to get around is to walk holding onto Mama or Dada's fingers.  We'll see if you are an early walker!  I at least hope you walk by the time little brother or sister arrives!

Nope, definitely not in the mood for pictures.
Really, Mom??
Diaper changes are... well... challenging.  You instantly crawl away and throw a mini tantrum when we drag you back.  You're starting to get into a lot of things that you're not supposed to.  For example, doggy toys, power cords, cell phones, and cabinets/drawers.  We've had to start using a firm "NO" to keep you out of trouble.  You do a good job of listening sometimes, but not always. :-)

Post-bathtime hair tonight.
All-in-all, you are a lot of work for Mama, but sooo much fun!  You are changing from baby to little boy right before our eyes.  

Love you, little mister!  

Mama

Christmas photo dump.

Making Christmas cookies with sister! (notice the bump)


The Haddix fam.
Riding on Grandpa's shoulders.
Jude opening his first present!

The Griffis sibs.
Eating pancakes for the first time on Christmas morning.
Sweet boy.
Happiest boy ever on Christmas morning.
On the go!
Loving the new Leapfrog table.
Of course doggy toys are more fun than all the new Christmas gifts.
:-)
Hello?
* * * * * * * * * * 

Jude had a great first Christmas!  He was {mostly} great at all the family Christmas parties {aside from the fact that he was beside himself screaming every time I walked away at the Griffis party... Mama's boy}.  He LOVED tearing open his presents and is enjoying his new toys.  He even did great going to bed at Mamaw and Papaw's and then coming home to sleep in his crib. 

More than anything, we are thankful for the true meaning of Christmas.  The birth of our savior.  On Christmas day, I couldn't get John 3:16 out of my head... not the traditional Christmas verse, but the fact that God gave his ONLY son (born in a manger no less) because of his love for us... truly amazing.  We are so blessed to be able to celebrate Christ's birth and to spend this time with family! 



December 28, 2011

Merry Christmas week!

Add me to the naughty list.  So, I haven't posted about Jude's first Christmas.  I also haven't taken Jude's 9 month picture (which is today).  And I haven't told you about many other things I'm excited about... such as my Project Life scrapbooking project, updates on my being tested for Celiac Disease, my New Years resolutions, and how much my baby has become a little boy in the past month.

Sorry... but I've been hanging out with these cool cats.


B & K Beukema are in town for Christmas and since they leave for Jamaica on January 12, I've been soaking up precious time with them.  

Stay tuned.  Christmas pictures, a 9 month update, and many many other exciting posts that you will want to read and comment on are soon to come. :-)

In the meantime, I hope you are soaking up precious time with your loved ones as well.


December 17, 2011

Baby #2 :: 12 weeks

Well, here we are!  Baby #2 is well on his/her way and it's time for the first monthly update!  Craziness.


Today's date: December 17, 2011

How far along: 12 weeks

Total weight gain:  None.  I'm actually about 6-7lbs under where I was when I got pregnant with Jude.  Although I look like I'm about a month further along.

Size and growth of the baby: From crown to rump, your baby-to-be is just over 2 inches long (about the size of a plumb) and weighs half an ounce.   His face looks unquestionably human: His eyes have moved from the sides to the front of his head, and his ears are right where they should be. 

Sex: Too soon.

Maternity clothes: I'm refusing maternity clothes.  Funny how different it is from the first time around.  I couldn't get into those stretchy pants soon enough the first time.  Now I am cherishing my skinny jeans because I know how sick I'm going to get of them in about 6 months.  But I may or may not be leaving my pants unbuttoned these days.

Sleep: I suck at sleep when I'm pregnant.  Thank goodness Jude has been an amazing sleeper lately.

Best moment(s) of the week: My appetite has returned!!  It is amazing to eat like a normal person!!

Movement: Too soon to feel, though it's happening. :)

Food cravings/aversions: None today!!  Yippee!!

Morning sickness: Here and there.  I feel great today, so I REALLY hope this means we're over it.

Symptoms: Exhaustion, a bit of cramping, bloating, headaches.

Labor signs: Way too soon.

Belly button in or out: In.

What I miss: My energy.  It's different with an almost-9-month-old using you as a human jungle-gym.  Oh, to have my energy back.  I can't wait for 2nd tri.

What I'm looking forward to: Another Dr. appt on Thursday and 2nd trimester on Saturday!  Oh, and Christmas on Sunday.  And Jude's 9 month birthday on the following Wednesday.  Holy moly where has time gone??

See how things were going when I was 12 weeks pregnant with Jude.

December 13, 2011

Why I write.

I've been in a bit of a blog funk lately.  You know, sometimes you have these seasons where you just want to write and write and write and your heart is overflowing with things to share.  Then there are other seasons that seem a bit dry.  Life seems to just be that way.  Full of seasons.  

So I sit and wait until something inspiring pops in my mind so I can write about something that will draw your attention or that you will think is clever or funny or interesting.  But, no such thing enters my mind.  So I continue to have a blank page.

But then it brings me back to why I write?  Why do I write?  Why do I have this little space on the internet, where I share my life and my thoughts with family and complete strangers?  I think sometimes I forget who I write for.

You see, no offense... but I don't write for you.  I write for me.


I write because writing is therapy for me.  For as long as I can remember (at least 3rd-4th grade and on) I have kept a journal.  I still do.  And ever since the internet was a big deal I have kept blogs.  LiveJournal, Xanga... they are still there actually and it is kind of funny for me to look back and read them.  But through these journals I've documented different seasons of life.  The heart-wrenching difficult ones, and the ones where I was just overflowing with gratitude for all I had been blessed with.  It's my therapy.  I write for me.

Right now, my hard-copy journal has become more of my prayer journal and notes on scripture I'm studying.  I reserve my spew of thoughts for this blog.  Mainly because when I get in the mood my hands can type faster than they can write.  And I want to document each special moment I have as a mother, a wife, a child of God. 

And I have a passion for sharing life.  I truly don't think life was meant to keep a secret.  Sharing is healing.  Sharing is encouraging.  I haven't held anything back.  I've shared on this blog the devastation of our miscarriage before Jude.  I've shared my struggles with finding my rhythm when I became a new mom.  And my fears after finding out we're going to have two amazing blessings oh so close in age.  I just know that when I was in those moments if devastation and fear, hearing other women's stories were healing for me.  They were encouraging.  I wasn't alone.  Other women had been through this, and survived.

So, I'll continue to write.  About whatever comes to my heart.  And if you read it, great.  If you don't, oh well.  If a post has one view or 250 views, I'll still write.  This blog is about sharing my life.  Not about making money or gaining followers.  I write for me.


For now, I'm just 11.5 weeks pregnant with a sweet 8.5 month old napping in his crib.  That's what I'm thankful for.  I have a husband who is out working hard to provide for our little family and I am so very grateful that he values me staying home with our little one.  I'm starting to find a rhythm of spending time with the Lord again, and have made a resolution to read through the entire Bible regardless of how long it takes me.  I'm thankful for the many amazing friends the Lord has placed in our life.  I'm eager to spend the Holidays with family.  And I am thankful for the community that this little space on the internet has created so we can share life together. :-)


December 2, 2011

The second time around.

I really don't like to complain about being pregnant.  It is a huge blessing that we got pregnant so easily (too easily?) this time around.  But there are some huge differences between being pregnant for the first time and being pregnant this time.

Mainly, this little guy.


Nausea and wretched, foul, gag-inducing diapers do not mix well.  Nausea and just taking care of my 8 month old don't mix well.  I don't know if I feel sicker this time or not (funny how we forget), but I am pretty much feeling an all-day sick-to-my-stomach uggghhhh type of feeling.  To which my doctor says, "awesome, you know how to make my day!".  

I know this means I have a healthy little bean growing inside me.  For that I am thankful.  But, in the meantime... I just feel like a deadbeat mom.  I am exhausted beyond belief and I love my little guy to pieces, but I am simply wiped out.  I am on Zofran, which seems to keep the puking at bay, but hasn't done much for the all-day nausea. 

Another difference?  Those "rumors" that you show earlier with your second?  Uhhh yeah!  At 8 weeks pregnant my mom was already telling me I was popping!  Now at 10 weeks I'm refusing to wear the bella-band, but some pants just demand it.  I'm planning on taking monthly pictures like last time, but kind of dreading the comparison.  I'm afraid I'll look more like the 20 week picture from last time at 12 weeks.  

I am NOT planning on doing weekly blog updates again this time.  Sorry second child.  I promise I will try to take as many pictures of you once you are here.  But as far as blogging weekly?  Just not going to happen.  I WILL try to blog monthly along with my monthly pictures.  But things change when you have an 8 month old {and apparently when you're the second child}.

Bitty Baby Jude... at 2 weeks old.
 
 All in all, every day the idea of bringing another baby into the world becomes more and more real.  I find myself more and more excited to have a little snuggly bundle again, to nurse again, and more than anything, see my children grow up together, love each other, play with each other.  I just know that is going to be such a blessing.

There is just something special about siblings.

Sisters... in 2005!

November 28, 2011

Dear Jude :: 8 months


Dear Jude,

You are growing like a weed.  You gained 2 pounds between 6 and 7 months and I'm sure you weigh at least 18.5-19lbs by now!  You are getting taller and taller too.  And let's not even mention your hair.


It is a crazy mess!  I feel like if I want a cute clean-cut boy I gotta get the scissors out NOW.  But... I kinda like the messy long-haired boy look.  We'll rock it for at least another month. :-)

You're still in 6-9 month clothes, but are basically busting out of your sleepers, you long boy you.  So we went on a shopping spree the other day to stock up on 12 month clothes.  I can't believe it!!  


I thought for sure you'd be crawling by Thanksgiving, but you've decided that rolling is easier, so you still pretty much roll everywhere you need to go.  You have started to get on your knees and do a bit of an army crawl.  I bet by Christmas you'll be all over the place.  

You are also SUCH a comedian.  You have figured out what makes people laugh and your sense of humor is developing more and more.  You are such a goof-ball and I love that about you!

Crazy hair!!
We are no longer nursing at all {a story for another post}.  This made mama sad, but you made it clear that you were DONE!  And my supply just wasn't enough for you anymore.  So, now you get about 24oz of formula a day.  This is usually between 3-4 bottles.  We use Earth's Best Organic Formula and you haven't complained once.  You also eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner of solid food.  You LOVE the green Puff's.  And you love more and more finger food.  Some of your favorites are avocado, blueberries, pears, and bananas.  But you have about 4-5 jars of babyfood also each day.

And you are SLEEPING. THROUGH. THE. NIGHT.  For you, this means 12-13 hours.  7pm until 7/8am.  This is just amazing. 

Oh... and one more thing... you're going to be a BIG BROTHER!!  You're going to be the best {and littlest} big brother there is. :-)  I can't wait to see you and your new sibling play together and just love each other!



I love you more and more every day.  Thank you for bringing so much joy to my life!

Mmmmmwa!

Love, Mama

November 26, 2011

Many Thanks.

Thanks to everyone for all the congrats and support!!  It is nice to know there are so many people who can relate... both to the "oh crap" response and just having kids close.  I know I can do it!!  I just get a bit freaked out from time to time.

I didn't do a traditional Thanksgiving post this year, since I did my special announcement.  But I have MUCH to be thankful for.

Today, though, I am especially thankful for this little guy.  Last night Jordan and I spent a good hour just looking through pictures of the last 8 months and videos we've recorded.  We have been SO BLESSED by Jude.  It's hard to believe he is the product of Jordan and me.  We thank God for him every day!!  I know with #2 the love will just grow. :-)

Here are a few peeks at our Thanksgiving weekend.




November 24, 2011

Surprise!!

It is October 25.  I've been feeling a bit "off" for a few days.  Extra cranky maybe.  Tired... exhausted, really.  But I've had a sick baby, so that accounts for that, right?  Oh, and I'm STARVING.  But, I'm still nursing... and sometimes this appetite gets out of control.  

But it is "that time"... and someone isn't showing up.  You know who I mean {Aunt Flow}.  But of course I've always been irregular.  I could have my dates off.  And it would be a very off chance that we'd be... ya know.  BUT... just to prove that little nagging thought in my head wrong, I got a pregnancy test.  

I tell myself on the morning of October 25, if "you know who" hasn't shown up I'll take a test.  So, I did.  That morning, I grabbed the test, did my thing, and stuck it on the dresser while I went to get Jude up for the day.  I start our morning nursing session and take a look at it.  And wouldn't ya know...


You might remember my complete shock when we found out we were pregnant with Jude.  But we were trying.  We had been for over a year, actually.  So the idea of being pregnant was one that I was expecting sooner or later.  My shock this time absolutely does not compare.  TOTALLY FLOORED.  

I never understood people who weren't completely thrilled when they found out they were pregnant.  We tried so long with Jude, I just couldn't wrap my mind around not being excited about a baby.  But now I get it.  I think my first thought was "oh crap" {I hate that that was my first reaction} And I am full of fear.  We're still nursing and that means I might have to wean... and I'm not ready for that.  I just bought brand new non-maternity clothes.  What about Jude?  Will he feel second-best or jealous?  Crap, they're going to be 15 MONTHS APART!!  I had a mini big-time freak-out.  I called Jordan in and just showed him the test.  "No way!!".  Yes way.  

It is a weird place to be in.  It wasn't too long ago that an announcement like mine would have cut like a knife while we spent over a year trying to get pregnant with Jude.  I remember I honestly did not understand how people "accidentally" got pregnant after I had everything perfect month after month after month.  It's painful for some to hear these announcements.  I don't want to just let that acknowledgement slide.

It still has taken some time to sink in.  I had a lot of fear at first.  Mostly about how this would change my relationship with Jude.  But after spending some time in prayer, I have come to a few realizations.

1.  Fear is not of the Lord.

2. The Lord gave me this precious child... NOT by accident.

3. My children are not mine... but the Lord's... and He will give me all I need to be a good parent to both of them.

4. Siblings are an amazing gift!

5. My kids are going to keep growing up... and I can't stop them.


So, now I am super excited.  I always said that two weeks after Jude was born I was ready to do it all over again, and that's true.  Somehow, I just freaked out when it happened.  But I can't wait to add to our family and for Jude to have a little brother or sister so close in age!  I will say that pregnancy and all of it's wonderful symptoms are a lot more fun and easier when you aren't wrestling an almost 8-month-old most of the day!  Thank the Lord for Zofran. :-)  My doctor has kept a very close eye on me since first trimester is always kinda scary for me.  Thank goodness we've seen a healthy heartbeat twice and everything is looking perfect!

Due date... June 30ish. :-)  It's about to be a wild ride folks.

November 20, 2011

Mamamamaaaa!

We've been hearing a lot of "mamamamama" and "bababababa" and "dadadadadaaaaa!" lately.  Enjoy. :-)  At least I think he's pretty cute.



November 16, 2011

A load of crock.

Tonight I am bringing dinner to some dear friends who just welcomed a new little bundle to their family a few weeks ago.  I resorted to my favorite "bring 'em a meal" recipe, Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili by skinnytaste.  I've found quite a few excellent recipes from her site!

Source: SkinnyTaste.com
Doesn't it look delicious??  This morning I threw all the ingredients into the crock pot and put it on high and the aroma of an already-made delicious dinner is slowly filling my home.  And I find myself thinking... 

Why the heck don't I do this more often??

I'm not a cook.  I'm not all that good at it, nor do I like to do it.  Hence, crock pot.  But I rarely use the crock pot.  Not sure why.  But today, I am vowing to change that!  

Today, I'm asking you for your favorite crock-pot recipes.  Link to them in the comments or just write out the recipes.  I'm BEGGING you!!  I will be forever grateful for the many nights you will save me from staring into my refrigerator waiting for that perfect delicious dinner to pop out of nowhere.

November 15, 2011

Success.

A few people have been asking about our craft show and I thought I'd share how the day went.






My crafting buddies... a.k.a. the preggos... Maggie and Sharlynn.
So... all in all I'd say the craft show was a success.  And by success I mean, we didn't sell nothing... and at least I broke about even with my expenses.  But it did not go NEAR as well as we had hoped.  We sold 7 items total.  :-(  We kind of think it wasn't quite the right crowd.  And we got some good ideas for some changes and additions to make our items more appealing.  And we are NOT giving up.  An Etsy shop is still in my mind, perhaps after the holidays.

If you would like a necklace for the holidays, email me and I'll send you pics of what I have.  I'm open to some custom orders as well.  I was selling the necklaces for $12 at the craft show, but would include shipping if you require it shipped.

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

In other successes.  This little boy has gone the past 4 nights without needing to eat in the middle of the night.  And ONE of those nights he didn't make a peep for 12.5 hours.


I do kind of miss those middle of the night snuggles.  But I REALLY can't complain about getting a full nights sleep.  That hasn't happened in about... 8 months or so.  And I still have the video monitor to watch his sweet cheeks sleep at night.  Does this make me a mommy stalker?  Nah.  If I'm still doing that when he's 16 you can confront me on it.

November 11, 2011

Made on Tuesday.


I wasn't always a crafty person.  In fact, three years ago I wasn't into DIY or hand-making stuff AT ALL.  I'm not sure what changed that, but now I can't get enough.

Maybe it was my discovering Etsy and getting the wheels turning in my head... that doesn't look SO hard.  Or maybe it was baby fever that hit around that same time.  I made bibs and burp cloths galore long before Jude was even a little blueberry in my belly.  And then there is Pinterest.  Oh, Pinterest.

In any case, about two and a half years ago I randomly bought my first sewing machine and we've been buds {and sometimes enemies} ever since!

Luckily I have some pretty awesome crafty friends.  For the past year and a half or so, I've been getting together almost weekly with some of my best college buds.  My old roomies, Holly and Sharlynn, and an old friend from middleschool/highschool/college, Maggie, and I get together most every Tuesday night to craft.  Oh, and eat.  And sometimes watch The Bachelor.  And just gab.  Ya know, girl stuff.  Tuesday has quickly become one of my favorite nights of the week.  It's been my "me time" break every week and a chance to unwind from dealing with a crazy boy all day {who I love}.

One day one of us {I don't remember who} had the idea of "hey, we could make some money doing this... why don't we join a craft show?".  Brilliant!  So, we are!  TOMORROW!  Needless to say, I've been crafting WAY more than on Tuesdays to get my stuff together for this craft show.  
We call ourselves Pickles and Ice Cream Shop and will be selling items for baby and mama!  We're talking bibs, headbands, barettes, booties, and beanies for baby and necklaces and things for the home for ladies.  

Here are a few of the things I've made myself.





 If any of you are local, you are welcome to come!  It is from 9a-2p at 
Borculo Christian School 6830 96th Ave Zeeland, MI 49464.

I'm considering opening an Etsy shop to sell some of what I don't at the craft show.  And just for some extra cash, because who couldn't use some of that?

What are some of the crafty items you've made lately?

Do any of you have an Etsy shop?  Feel free to link to it in your comment! 
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