raising a mommy

raising a mommy

Saturday, January 24, 2015

you do have to wash the dishes sometime

"Dishes can wait. That baby will grow up before you know it."

I cannot count how many well-intentioned people have uttered this phrase to me since Big Sister P was born nearly three years ago, and even before that. It is so true. It seems like just yesterday I was up at 3:00 am nursing her on the couch and watching old sitcom reruns because those and infomercials are the only things on TV at that time and I needed something to keep me awake. Now she is running, climbing, having conversations, and turning into an actual little kid. She skipped the toddler phase. And then there's Baby M, who is growing at an alarming rate

And yet...

Dishes do not wash themselves. (Unless you have a dishwasher, which I don't. And even then, only some dishes can go in there and they still need to be loaded up and put away. The dishwasher only does so much.) You can only walk across an unswept floor so many times before the crumbs sticking to your feet drive you crazy. And if you ever want to wear unwrinkled clothes again, you are going to have to fold some laundry.

I would love to be able to tell you, new parents, when exactly is the best time to get these chores done. Sadly, I cannot, because I just don't know.

They aren't always fun, and they will either take away from your quality snuggle time or your sleep time, both of which are crucial.

So the next time you're talking to the overwhelmed parent of little ones and you're tempted to quip this cliche, please stop. They are well aware that their child seems to grow at least an inch every night while they sleep (however sporadically). Maybe stick with a "Hang in there - it gets easier" or "You're doing a great job. This is a lucky baby." It will be appreciated.

Now, if you can get them to help you, that may solve both problems.
Otherwise, just snuggle!

Monday, January 12, 2015

thoughts on judgement

Today's blessing:
Not being the one to judge humanity at the end of time

That's a big job, and I wouldn't want it!

But not just at the end of time - I don't want to be the judge ever. There's too much pressure.

My Jesus said "love your neighbor" not "look with scorn upon those you think are wrong."
He said "let he who is without sin cast the first stone" not "throw rocks at people with whom you disagree."

We all live in sin. We try our best, but we still lie or cheat or covet or gossip or think bad thoughts. Every one of us. You are not an exception, and neither am I.

So how about this: I won't judge you for your sins and you don't judge me for mine. And while we're at it, let's not judge that homeless guy on the corner or the woman paying for her groceries with an EBT card or that pregnant woman who doesn't look like she could be more than 17 years old or even (dare I say it?) those two men who are holding hands. If we all did a little less judging and a little more helping, what would this world look like?

Why don't we try it and see?



I hope my kids are raising a mommy who teaches not just tolerance or acceptance, but love.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

an update on the kiddos

Baby M hit the four month mark a earlier this month, so I guess it's time for an update!

Mastered Skills (most babies can do)
Holds head up steadily: Like a champ. Based on his size and head strength, people usually guess his age to be 6-7 months.
Can bear weight on legs: He certainly can! This is one strong kid.
Coos when you talk to him: More like yells. We could be in for a fun toddler-hood.
Does mini push-ups: He does. I know it'll be no time at all before he starts crawling. Yikes.

Emerging Skills (half of babies can do)
Can grasp a toy: He can. He has a bouncy chair thing that we put him in sometimes, and it has a bar that goes over him with a couple little dangling toys. He likes to grab onto the zebraffe (shape of a giraffe, stripes like a zebra) and just yell at the poor thing. I don't know what it did to make him mad.
Reaches out for objects: Like the zebraffe? And a few other toys.
Can roll over: Both ways! Watch out, world!

Advanced Skills (a few babies can do)
Imitates speech sounds (baba, dada): He doesn't quite have the consonants down, but he sure loves to make noise at you!
May cut first tooth: Not yet, thank goodness. He drools like crazy, though, so I kind of wonder if it's coming.

Our little chunker is now in nine month clothing, and the 12 month stuff that we have is not comically large on him. Mommy's not okay with this. I guess it makes sense, though, since he eats all the time!

The kids were so fortunate to get to celebrate two Christmases this year. We celebrated with Daddy's family the weekend before Christmas, and then we road tripped to see mine for Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Daddy had to go back home the day after Christmas, but I stayed with the kids for another week. All three of my brothers made it home, too, so it was nice to have the whole family together for the first time since I don't even remember when! I think Grandpa and Grandma enjoyed the extra time, too.

Big Sister P has officially hit the terrible twos, which I hear actually get worse at age three. (Which is next month. Yikes.) There's something to look forward to. I think one of her biggest issues is that she misses our big house on the prairie. We have become hesitant to go anywhere now because we don't want to deal with the inevitable freak out when we tell her that we have to go home. She asks about our old house and when we get to go to the old house and why our friend C is now living in our old house. Trust me, kid, there's a lot that I miss about it, too! I feel bad for our neighbors, though. That girl has lungs!

The tantrums, however, probably seem way more frequent than they actually are. Most of the time, she's a polite, intelligent, and caring kid. When Grammy explained what she was doing when she was shopping for her work's Adopt a Family, P got very concerned and asked if she could buy a toy for the kids who weren't getting any presents. How's that for heart-warming?

She's learned several new words recently, including consequences and generosity. "If I listen to mommy and daddy, there are no consequences!" She's not a fan of the time out.

When counting, she still usually skips over 14 and 15, but other than that, she can count to 20. Every now and then, she even gets those two numbers in there.

P's new favorite activity is washing dishes. I hope she continues to enjoy this, because I will pay her good money when she's old enough to actually get them clean. Dishes are, by far, my least favorite household chore.

Uncle A got her the movie "Frozen" for Christmas, so I am now experiencing what most parents went through exactly one year ago. I really don't mind it, though. It's a cute movie, and it's nice to rotate it with Tangled. Every single one of the songs gets stuck in your head, though. I think the phrase Husband used yesterday was "audio crack." That sounds about right. She loves wearing her hair in braids like Anna, and she switches back and forth between which sister she is, so I don't have to be Elsa every time.

Anna hair!

We went to a friend's house for dinner last month, and P helped make dessert!

Strong boy with a nice drool train...

P helped Grandpa with his crossword puzzle; what a girl!

Rocking the sweater vest like a...social studies teacher?

Sibling love! Most of the time...

Thursday, January 1, 2015

one word 2015

Today's blessing:
Grace

Friends, I'm going to try something this year. #oneword365 has been on my heart since I first heard about it two years ago, and I think this is the year. Anna at girl with blog summed it up in her 2014 oneword post by saying "...instead of guilt over goals un-fulfilled, there was drive to grow in a specific area that actually permeated many."


Consistent

This is my word. Throughout 2015, I will work on being more consistent in all areas of my life, including this blog.

Consistent means one or two posts a month. Maybe more, but no fewer.

Consistent means putting away five things that aren't where they belong before I go to bed. At least most nights.

Consistent means averaging 10,000 steps per day.

Consistent does not mean perfect. Something done imperfectly is better than nothing getting done at all. A blog post without edited pictures and fancy links is better than no blog post.

Returning two items to their home or two pieces of junk mail to the recycling, while not as good as five, is better than none.

Running two miles, while not always as good as running five, is better than not running at all.

In the spirit of embracing my imperfection, I spent a bunch of time yesterday working on a graphic. I wanted something fun and bright and impressive. It has become clear to me that I have a lot to learn about picmonkey, so this is what you get for now!


Did you choose a word or make a resolution? Tell me about it so we can encourage each other!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

small changes

Today's blessing:
Wool socks. Because, as my husband says, I have dead people feet.

You may notice some small changes taking place around here. Husband pointed out that I share a lot of personal information. I mean, a lot. Anyone reading this blog wouldn't have to dig too far to learn the full names of our children, what they like and dislike, and generally where we live. Also, there are tons of pictures. I realize that nearly everyone who reads this probably already has all of that information anyways, but it only takes one crazy person to stumble upon my little family and do bad things. That said, I'll be spending the next few days taking down many of the bigger identifiers, meaning names and specific locations. Pictures will remain.

Big sister P and Baby M are trying to raise a mommy who is not paranoid, just careful!

thankful day twelve

Today's blessing:
Herbal tea.

So there's a tea store in the mall in my town, and boy is it dangerous. They always have tons of samples, and you can't expect me not to try free samples of tea, can you? It's just so wonderful...
Some people might call me a health nut, but I'm really not. For a snack before bed tonight I had a piece of homemade chocolate chip raspberry bread. (Jealous? You should be...remember, I do have the best husband ever.) I'm all about desserts and splurging when appropriate. I'm not a fan of the unnecessay sugar and salt that comes in pretty much everything. Like juice. I understand that you can get juice that is 100% juice with no sugar added, but there is still a ton of sugar in it! I never really realized that until I began shopping for P and started reading labels. Is it really necessary to add salt to frozen veggies? And why can't canned mandarin oranges be canned in water or their own juice rather than syrup?

Now, tea...there is potentially my new superfood. If you get the caffeine free kind (which I realize isn't actually tea, but that's another can of worms) then what's wrong with brewing some for a kid? I tried a delicious blueberry tea that any kid would be lucky to have in their sippy cup!

Then I got to thinking...if I won't feed something to my baby, why am I allowing myself to eat it? 

One thing I'm learning...this baby is raising a mommy who is much more aware of what she allows her family to put into their bodies.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

day one: setting boundaries

Today's blessing:
Listening to my husband sing to our baby girl during bath time.

I'm guessing, for most people, setting boundaries with the computer would mean getting away from the screen and into real life. Not so much here. I love to write and have thoroughly enjoyed what little time I've gotten to spend in this little corner of the internet. I am going to be more intentional about making sure I set aside time to spend here. It's good for my spirit, and maybe I can connect with someone who needs it, too. Who knows, maybe I'll surprise myself and have some little nugget of wisdom to share!