Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Those with young

Do you have young? Do you need encouragement? I do. On both accounts. I'm tired. I'm overwhelmed. I cannot do this on my own power. Here is a Message:

He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; He gently leads those that have young. Isaiah 40:11

Our Lord is not heavy-handed nor is He absent from our lives. Take heart in that!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Advent Season

I want to share a couple thoughts from the sermon I heard today. I've never really known what the Advent Season is. I've always just figured it had something to do with Christmas since that is the only time I've ever heard it spoken about. I learned something new today.

Advent (from the Latin word adventus, meaning "coming") is a season of the Christian church, the period of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus, in other words, the period immediately before Christmas. It is the beginning of the Western Christian year and commences on Advent Sunday.

Latin adventus is the translation of the Greek word parousia, commonly used in reference to the Second Coming. Christians believe that the season of Advent serves a dual reminder of the original waiting that was done by the Hebrews for the birth of their Messiah as well as the waiting that Christians today endure as they await the second coming of Christ. (From Wikipedia)

I think that the Advent we should focus on is the one yet to be. The preacher said, "While Jesus' birth is important, His return is imminent. ...It's hard to see what's ahead when we are always looking backward." We can get so distracted by what was that we forget that something is still to come. His return IS imminent...are you ready? Are you watching? Are you expectantly waiting and preparing?

O Come, O Come Emmanuel
O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Day-spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.

"Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour." Matthew 25:13

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Cardboard Testimonies

I had never seen any Cardboard Testimonies until today when a friend sent me a link to the Cardboard Testimonies at Richland Hills Christian Church in N. Richland Hills, Texas. The idea is that everyone has a story and the testimonies tell various people's stories before and after Jesus. I went looking for it on YouTube so I could embed it here on my blog but I couldn't find it there. What I did find was there are several CT's to watch on YouTube, just not the one I saw first by following the link. Sooo, click on the link and spend a few (worthwhile) moments seeing the difference Jesus has made in people's lives.

I've embedded a different one below from YouTube. It's good also. Of course it's good...It's God working in the lives of people...that's always good.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Why I'm AWOL

What I've done today (Oct 10th):

peeling apples
cooking apples
mashing apples
craft beads
give a test
baby swinging
peeling apples
explain perfect tenses
cooking apples
stepping on craft beads
mashing apples
phone call
change toddler

I quit making the list because I just didn't have time. I've been reading blogs intermittently but I've no time/energy to post. I miss it but I AM enjoying my little lambs. That's a good thing.

Here's an article about why we maybe should avoid calling our children "kids": Is There A Better Word Than Kids?

Baby Levi at 2 1/2 months:

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Feeling Grateful

Somehow I don't feel much like complaining about grocery prices!!
I'll happily pay the extra for milk and eggs that I'm paying...

Sunday, August 03, 2008


My pregnancy ticker at the top of the page is wrong. I do NOT have 5 days to go. Because my new little boy is 4 days old now!! :-) Yep, that's right. I finally had that sweet little boy and I feel SO much better. I knew I would. Okay, the details. Levi Quinn was born Wednesday morning, July 30th, at 6:25 a.m. It's hard to say how long the labor was because I had been in mild/moderate labor for DAYS!!! But I arrived at the hospital at 3:50 a.m. and he was born at 6:25. That's 2 hours and 35 minutes later. Sounds good, eh? Levi weighed 9 pounds 13 ounces and was 21 1/4 inches long with a 14 1/2 inch head. There was a lot of baby all bunched up inside of me and we both seem happy with his change of address! :-) Labor was uneventful except for the remarkable fact that I HAD A BABY!! :-) It was unmedicated as I wished, I labored in the tub until the last possible moment, I didn't tear so there were no stitches (yea!!), my doc let me deliver the placenta unassisted, she waited until the cord stopped pulsing in order to cut it, the doc didn't break my water (even though she asked if she could during those last few moments). BTW, her reason for wanting to break the water wasn't good enough so I said no. She wanted to break it because she didn't want it to break all of a sudden, in a gush, all over her! I said "isn't that why you get paid the big bucks!?!?" Soon my water broke all over her. She said, "That's what I mean." Funny! I pushed for 11 minutes and then I had my sweet 'little' baby! Well, that's all I have time to write for now. We're pretty busy and nursing is a little rough right now because Levi is tongue-tied but hopefully that will be remedied tomorrow at the doctor's office. Here's a link to a slideshow of Levi's hospital pics. I put it together really quickly so they aren't all the best pictures, I just dumped them all into the slide show without being choosy. Enjoy!! BTW, I worried in my last post what message I was conveying to (especially) my 12 y.o. daughter... Today she said, "I sure hope Levi isn't going to be the youngest child around here..." Hoo boy!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Weak and Heavy-laden

I'm having so much trouble being cheerful and thankful at this point in my pregnancy. I've just been miserable and oh so tired. I don't sleep much at night and that makes days with my 4 children not so pleasant. I feel like I'm complaining at every turn and I can't seem to get it under control. I just want to be DONE! I've never felt this uncomfortable during a pregnancy before. Maybe it's my age?? I'm 39. I find myself worried that maybe I'll have to do this again and I won't be able to do it again. That's certainly not the attitude I wish to have and not the attitude I want to convey to my children (especially my 12 y.o. daughter!)

I feel so badly that I'm not able to do the stuff I normally can do and because of that I'm placing a much bigger burden on my husband. It seems like such a burden that my children are having to bear because I'm not up to my usual duties. I feel like the house is falling apart despite my husband's valiant efforts, I feel like my kids aren't getting the attention and care that they want and deserve. I wonder why in the world I put in a garden that I can't maintain. I wonder what we are doing that we should eliminate in order to have more time for the important. I wonder how to balance the fact that I just cannot do certain things with the fear that I'm being lazy and taking advantage of the situation.

Sometimes I don't know I've overdone things until it's too late. I look back and realize 'oh, THAT, was too much'. I'm light-headed, dizzy, and I stagger around the house sometimes with contractions that don't allow me to stand up straight but I have to keep going because dinner needs to be made and the contractions I'm having, while they are difficult, aren't accomplishing anything at the moment. I know (because I've had other pregnancies where I contract for WEEKS/MONTHS before delivery) that it all those contractions make for a pretty fast labor in the end BUT it's so hard to be in mild labor almost all the time. I think I'd rather just save it for the end where everything else stops and I can just have the baby. Instead, I doing labor and life at the same time. I don't like it. But that's where I am and somehow I need to find ways to be cheerful, thankful, and trusting that God is at work in this pregnancy, my life and in my family.

This is a pretty bad pity party but maybe I'm venting enough here that things will get better. Meaning, of course, that my attitude will get better. Just pray with me that I will remember to avail myself of the privilege of laying my burdens at the foot of the cross and remember that Jesus can take our burdens and turn them into joy!

Forgive me for taking this verse out of context but I've been thinking of this one a lot during this pregnancy:

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. Romans 8:18

What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.

Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear
May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer
Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Laundry at Midnight

I got out of bed to put all the baby clothes that have been packed up into the washing machine. Maybe I'm getting ready too early but then maybe I'm not. It's so hard for me to tell. I've been very uncomfortable today. Lots of contractions, gastrointestinal upset, some vomiting. I never know if I'm just doing too much or if "something" is happening. I need some clear, unmistakeable sign that "this is it". Breaking of my waters would do it but I don't want it because the last two times my water broke in the hospital the baby was born within 9 minutes and the second time was within 7 minutes. I definitely don't want my water breaking at home! So I'm left to wonder when things get strange, "Is this it??" Just in case, I'm laundring baby clothes and blankets. Tomorrow I plan to wash the infant car seat cover and get that all ready. Maybe I'm setting myself up for a really long wait or else I'm just being prepared.

My Ambien is kicking in...I better hit the hay.

Getting some ZZZ's

I got some pretty good sleep last night. What a blessing. I haven't been sleeping well for a few weeks due to my restless, twitchy legs. I've been averaging about 2-4 hours a night. That is just not enough for me. My doctor prescribed Ambien for me Friday, June 27th and I slept great that night. It didn't work the next night! I was so disappointed. A couple of days later I decided to take two and THAT worked much better. At my last appointment she (my doc) said that taking 2 if fine but it would be better if I was only taking it 2-3 times a week. So I pretty much have to decide ahead of time if I really need to sleep on a particular night or if this night will be one of the ones that I'm tossing and turning, up taking a hot bath, and getting no sleep. My right eye has been twitching on and off for about 3 weeks now and I'm sure that it's due to the lack of sleep. I had a mild case of this when I was pregnant with Abby but it wasn't much of a problem and it went away after her delivery. I'm sure hoping the same is the case this time. I'd hate to be up in the night trying to rock and nurse my new little one and unable to sit still! I'm hopeful that it will go away in time.

Friday, July 04, 2008

I'm not calling Guinness just yet

Wednesday I had an ultrasound (pictures are below) but I couldn't have the follow-up appointment with the doctor because she was in surgery. They scheduled me to come back the next day (Thursday). That's not so bad but it's a 40 mile round trip and I hated to spend the gas to do that twice in two days. Also it's a little difficult scheduling that around hubby's work and my waning energy. In any case, I went yesterday for the follow-up and the doctor was delivering a baby. I chose to wait rather than have to come back yet again. My wait ended up being an hour and twenty minutes! That was pretty miserable because I can't sit still for long. I have had a lot of trouble this pregnancy with restless legs and trying to sit for very long is pretty impossible. I also cannot relax. It has made for many, many sleepless nights already and I still have five weeks to go....

So, my follow-up appointment. The reason I had the u/s in the first place is because my fundal height was measuring large and the doctor wanted to see how big the baby was and see if I maybe had too much amniotic fluid. I pretty much consented to the u/s because I wanted to have pictures taken like the ones below... :-) The technician told me that the baby has chunk on 'it' and I also have a lot of fluid but that neither of those things were dangerous. Yesterday the doctor said that, yes, the baby is big. Baby weighs 8 lbs 5 oz. right now and that if I go to my due date I'm looking at delivering a 9 to 10 pounder. She said I just may break my personal record which is 9 lbs. 9 oz. (Adam). I don't really know how accurate with these weight estimates and I kind of wish I didn't have those numbers in my head!

The doctor said that if I consented to an amniocentesis to check up on lung maturity then she would deliver me early. If you know me very well, you know that there's no way I would consent to that unless there was some kind of an emergency! BTW there's a really cool DVD called In The Womb put out by National Geographic. On that DVD I learned that when the baby's lungs are mature they secrete a protein into the amniotic fluid that triggers the placenta to decrease the production of progesterone and to increase the production of oxytocin. Either of those things can put one into labor and both of them combined would certainly do the trick! And so, since I like to keep things a natural as possible, I'll be waiting until the natural course of events unfolds.

Remind me I said that a couple of weeks from now if I start complaining!

Does anybody else have experience with the doctor's estimating baby's weight? Were they right or wrong?

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Whaddya think?

My due date is 5 1/2 weeks away. Don't you think this baby looks "done" now? I feel pretty done... I guess we'll just have to wait and see!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

♪ Psalms & Hymns & Spiritual Songs ♪


God will make a way where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me
He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength
For each new day
He will make a way
He will make a way

By a roadway
In the wilderness
He'll lead me
And rivers in the desert will I see
Heaven and earth will fade
But His Word will still remain
He will do something new today

God will make a way where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me
He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength
For each new day
He will make a way
He will make a way

Don Moen

Friday, June 20, 2008

Today's Doctor's Appointment

Well, I didn't have my OB appointment today. I was running late and I called the doctor's office from my car (yes, while I was driving) and said that I would probably be about 10 minutes late for my appointment. The receptionist checked the schedule and told me that I would have to reschedule for next week. Arrgh. On one hand I was irritated but on the other hand I don't like going anyway so it's not so bad to put it off for another week. On the other hand, I was irritated. She asked when looked good for rescheduling next week. I said afternoons are best and any afternoon would do. She asked if 11:40 a.m. would work. I condesendingly sweetly replied that that was actually still morning NOT afternoon and I was thinking sometime after 3pm. So... now I have an appointment for NEXT Friday at 3:40 pm. I'll make a better effort to arrive on time!!

If only real midwives could deliver in the hospitals here and insurance would pay for it! Sigh.

cartoon source:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Pregnancy & Cousins' Camp

At my last OB appointment (May 28th) I was 29 1/2 weeks. I haven't been keeping track of my weight very much so I asked what my weight gain had been so far. The nurse looked at my chart and said that I had lost since the last visit and that my total gain was 2 pounds! Cool! I have an appointment this Friday and I'll be 33 weeks. I absolutely expect to hear that I've gained about 10 pounds in the intervening 3 1/2 weeks. It's been crazy!

We went on "vacation" to visit my family in western Oregon June 4-9. I think I gained all the weight then. Vacation is in quotes because traveling 9 hours one way when I'm 30 weeks pregnant is not a comfortable venture for me. It wasn't too bad on the way there but the drive back was pretty miserable! It was worth it though because it was time for the kids to go to Cousins' Camp. My parents grandkids who are approximately 4 years old and up get to go to grandma & grandpa's house (without the parents and younger siblings) for two days of activities and fun times. This year we had three of our kids at camp. It's worth whatever it takes to make it to camp. Yes, even that miserable drive! :-) Anyway, since we weren't at home and we were eating out, I think I ate a lot more than usual. I found my appetite returned when I didn't have to think much about planning meals or preparing them. I'm very curious to see how much I've gained when I go to this next appointment.

I also want to know if maybe the due date is wrong and I'll be having this baby sooner than we thought. Everyone I see is amazed when they find out I'm not due until August 8. A checker lady at Wal-Mart gave me a raised eyebrow when I told her Aug. 8th. An older man at Home Depot looked at me incredulously and asked if I was sure about that date. A man I don't know at my parents church asked me if maybe it was twins I was carrying. The size of my belly coupled with my frequent contractions and sleepless nights really does make me wonder if this can really go on for another 7-8 weeks. Ah, here's a contraction now. Speak of the devil! I have to remember, though, that I have contractions all through my last trimester anyway, so I really shouldn't make too much of this.

BTW, here's a picture that was on the Cousins' Camp t-shirts this year:

I'd rather starve...

...than eat a bent cucumber.

This is so ridiculous that I had to share it.

Apparently several of the EU governments would rather throw out misshapen fruits and veggies than eat them. With high food prices and starving people throughout the world this is just ludicrous! One idea was to let misshapen fruits be sold in shops with a special label indicating for use in cooking which, the Commission says, makes far more sense than throwing them away. (duh!) But, a lot of the member states did not like it.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Menu Plan Monday - June 15, 2008

Sunday- Ham & Cheese Sandwiches
Monday- Deer Steaks & Mashed Potatoes
Tuesday- Chicken Salad & French Bread
Wednesday- Grilled Salmon, Grilled Zucchini & Salad
Thursday- Crockpot Chicken & Mashed Potatoes
Friday- Homemade Pizza
Saturday- Leftover Buffet

See what's on other menus at Organizing Junkie, the host of MPM.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Grace Beyond Measure

I know Father's Day was yesterday but, hey, I'm just running behind on everything at this point.

Yesterday I read a great Father's Day post at the Common Room. The Headmistress there wrote so many things that echo in my heart that I wanted to share it with you.

Speaking of her husband she writes:
I wish that I could say that I carefully chose him for all of those qualities that make him an excellent parent, but the truth is that what attracted me the most was his brilliant blue-green eyes, long hair, and his high cheekbones and great tan...

Yes, he was a gentle, kind, and easy going person, I knew that. But that was a bonus. Those pleasant attributes did not strike sparks from my heart the way those astonishing eyes did. I was playing with fire, making decisions of a lifetime based on the heartbeats of a moment. I deserved to be struck by lightening for my frivolity, but instead, I received the gift of domestic fire- a gentle, loving, kind, godly man, a man devoted to his God and his family...

The green heart-flutterings of a silly 20 year old are not be compared with the strong, steady, dependable heartbeats of a 46 year old who knows that her husband will protect her and her children with everything he has. I'll take the sweetness of properly aged and ripened maturity over all the flibberty-gidget heart-throbs of callow youth...

There's more. You should go read it.

Here is my comment on her post:

I, so like you, "was playing with fire, making decisions of a lifetime based on the heartbeats of a moment. I deserved to be struck by lightening for my frivolity, but instead, I received the gift of domestic fire". I wonder why I was so protected in my silliness and others that I know were not. It seems unfair and I have some sense of survivor's guilt. I know not why I'm so blessed, but I am. It's only been 13 years for us but I could echo so many of your words. I'm thankful for each one of these 13 years. I'm about to have my 5th child and I'm thankful for each one of them as well. A wonderful father for my children is a gift beyond my deserving.

In my comment I referred to my silliness but in all actuality I should have said my rebellion. I do not understand how God metes out His grace and mercy. I'm thankful for it but I don't deserve it. Likewise, I don't deserve the wonderful husband I have, but I'm oh so thankful for him.

Happy Father's Day, dear, I love you!!

The righteous man walks in his integrity; His children are blessed after him. Prov. 20:7

Monday, June 02, 2008

Quite a pair

My last post included a photo of Abby as my cookie apprentice and just yesterday I stumbled upon a picture of Adam at about the same age and in the same spot in our kitchen. Here are the photos together...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Spring, Gardening, and Baking

I've been busy the last couple of weeks getting my garden all set up. It seems crazy to me that it's taken that long to get a garden in that is as small as mine. It's just that I can't do much without getting tired out and winded. Pregnancy does that to me. It's also been pretty hot this last weekend that takes it out of me too. Yesterday a fierce wind blew in and cooled things down and brought a lot of spring rain. That means that today I'm happy to be baking bread and cookies. :-)

Later I'll get some pictures of my garden and post them. I always love pictures of my garden when it's first planted. It's so pretty without all the weeds that end up taking over by July!

I'll leave you now with pictures of my youngest cookie apprentice, Abby:

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Hope Fulfilled

I forgot that I posted last October about planting tulip and daffodil bulbs. I came across the post a couple of days ago while reading through my archives. I'm so glad that I bothered to take pictures of the flowers before they dried up. I bet they would have lasted longer if I had watered them, ya think?

Enjoy a glimpse of God's handiwork in His world:

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Thoughts on Earth Day

Today is Earth Day. Not a day I generally take notice of but I thought what I read in my devotional today was so good I wanted to share it.

Today is Earth Day, a commemoration of our global home and a reminder of our responsibility to be careful stewards of this orb. But celebrating the greatness of our unique home among the planets can take on a dangerous slant if we leave out one key element. Contemplating the grandeur of earth should remind us that we are merely "the people of His pasture" (Ps. 95:7), and we must worship "our Maker" (v.6). The creation was flung into space to point to God and His greatness, power, and majesty. He alone deserves our praise and worship (Ps. 148:5). Thank You, Lord, for such an awe-inspiring reminder to worship You! — Dave Branon

How foolish to worship the creation, when the Creator is so much greater.

Source: Our Daily Bread

The Whole Creation Invoked to Praise the LORD.

1 Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens; Praise Him in the heights!
2 Praise Him, all His angels; Praise Him, all His hosts!
3 Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all stars of light!
4 Praise Him, highest heavens, And the waters that are above the heavens!
5 Let them praise the name of the LORD, For He commanded and they were created.
6 He has also established them forever and ever; He has made a decree which will not pass away.
7 Praise the LORD from the earth, Sea monsters and all deeps;
8 Fire and hail, snow and clouds; Stormy wind, fulfilling His word;
9 Mountains and all hills; Fruit trees and all cedars;
10 Beasts and all cattle; Creeping things and winged fowl;
11 Kings of the earth and all peoples; Princes and all judges of the earth;
12 Both young men and virgins; Old men and children.
13 Let them praise the name of the LORD, For His name alone is exalted; His glory is above earth and heaven. (emphasis mine)
14 And He has lifted up a horn for His people, Praise for all His godly ones; Even for the sons of Israel, a people near to Him. Praise the LORD!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

WFMW - Greatest Hits

This week's tip is supposed to be one our favorite tips from our archives. Mine is about measuring honey and molasses. Here it is:

In keeping with the kitchen edition this week, here's my quickie little Works-For-Me-Wednesday tip. When a recipe I'm using calls for honey or molasses, I spray a little food release in the measuring spoon or measuring cup before I pour in the sticky stuff. When I pour it back out of the cup it comes out so quickly and easily it usually comes out it one big glob. No more waste and no more "slow as molasses in January" for me. It's quick, it's simple, and it Works For Me. Check out other tips at Rocks in My Dryer.

My previous WFMW posts:

Monday, March 31, 2008

Conversations with Adam

Adam: Why do you have such a big blub?
Me: That's my tummy, not a blub. Why do YOU think I have such a big tummy?
Adam: I don't know.
Me: Is it bigger than it used to be?
Adam: Yes.
Me: And you have no idea why it's getting bigger?
Adam: shakes head no
Me: Where do you think our new baby is growing?
Adam: At Schimmels' ?? (family friends)

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Menu Plan Monday - March 30, 2008

Sunday- Tuna Melts & Pears
Monday- Burritoes (make double batch to put in the freezer)
Tuesday- Grilled Salmon & Rice Pilaf
Wednesday- Tacos
Thursday- Chicken & Rice Bake
Friday- Homemade Pizza
Saturday- Spaghetti & Salad

See what's on other menus at Organizing Junkie, the host of MPM.

Newborn Eye Ointment

Anne, in the comments on my Pregnancy Update, you asked what the eye antibiotics were. I decided to post the information here rather than in the comments because of length.

Eye ointment - If you had a sexually transmitted disease while pregnant, this can be passed to your baby and cause blindness. Rather than test for an STD before applying the ointment, they simply apply it to all infants. Silver nitrate used to be used, and it stung the baby’s eyes, sometimes causing eye problems later in life. Now it is more common to use Erythromycin, which does not sting. However, many mothers object to their babies receiving a treatment that is unnecessary, especially if they are in a monogamous relationship and know they don't have an STD, or if they have been previously tested. This can be dispensed with if you sign a waver (sic). Click Here to read the medical research studies which explain why choosing to forgoe the ointment is a reasonable decision for parents to make because the treatment does not significantly reduce infection, and many infants who receive the treatment contraction the infection anyway.

Information copied from:
(This reference is not meant to imply an endorsement of the website mentioned)

Since this is totally not an issue for me, I see no reason whatsoever to subject my child to the antibiotic. I'm not a proponant of prophylactic antibiotic use anyway so it's a pretty natural response for me to decline it.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Pregnancy Update

I consistently read blogs even though I don't consistently write. I just haven't had much desire to write anything lately and I can't really blame it on my pregnancy. Well, maybe I can. The extreme nausea I usually experience has abated somewhat and it's definitely more managable but I still get quite tired and never know how to fit into one day all the things I 'need' or want to do. The list of things in my head is quite a bit longer than is my stamina. I guess I'm getting old!

I'm also having the struggle that I've had at this point in a pregnancy before and that is, "Boy, I wish I could just go to a midwife and a birthing center and skip all this medicalized doctor stuff" the trouble is, insurance pays 100% for the medicalized doctor stuff and 0% for the personal, humanized, holistic, hands-on care. It's a big difference between $0.00 and $3400.00 or so. Sigh. I guess I just go over my birth plan again and remind myself why I decline all the different testings and typical protocol and get ready to stand my ground. I do have to say, though, that my doctor last time didn't give me too hard a time about rejecting a lot of the typical medical protocol. In case you wonder what I mean specifically, I decline things like:
  • most cervical exams
  • genetic testing
  • glucose tolerance testing
  • group b strep testing
  • 20-week ultrasound (and any other u/s except the one at the start to date the pregnancy)
  • labor induction or augmentation
  • IV use
  • eye antibiotics for baby
  • assisted delivery of the placenta
Another thing is that I wish I could labor in the water as long as I wanted to and even deliver there. I'm pretty sure that's not okay at 'my' hospital and with my doctor although I will be verifying that to be sure.

Okay. That's out of my system. Now what I wish was out of my system is this nasty cold that I have. I cough so hard that I end up vomiting (nice), which is also hard on my umbilical hernia (ouch). Once the baby has grown enough that my uterus is blocking the hernia site it won't be so much of a problem. As it is, I have some excruciating belly button pain some days (even without the cough) and I have to press on my belly button to reduce the hernia and, um, well, push that little bit of intestine back through. Imagine that with a wicked cough.

Tomorrow is the halfway point in this pregnancy and I'm really looking forward to adding this new one to our home. (Even though I sound like I'm doing a lot of complaining in the above paragraphs!) I got to see Abby with my sister's new little baby girl and Abby LOVES her. It's so sweet! When I was holding Elizabeth, Abby would climb up on my lap and lay on my chest beside the baby and pat her back and tell her "you okay". Oh my goodness, she loves that little girl. It just make me anxious to bring home a little baby of our own to Abby. Anyhow, I'll end with a picture of the little sweetie born in the water at a birthing center and caught by her mama! Isn't that just great!?!?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

5:45 a.m.

That's when Abby woke up this morning and she didn't go back to sleep. I'm accustomed to sleeping until 7:30 - 8:30 depending on the day. This day isn't going so well for me!

So what did I find Abby doing at about 12:45 p.m. today? See below!

notice how her babies sleep face down like her!


My mom says she can't believe that I'm that old. Sorry, mom, but it's true, whatever that says about you. :-)

I had a pretty nice day. My daughter, Rebecca, was pretty excited about my birthday and she did all kinds of things to make it special. She rigged up a sort of balloon net outside my bedroom door and when I came out balloons cascaded down all around me and the kids sang "Happy Birthday". She was so pleased that her idea worked! She put up decorations in the kitchen and made a "Happy Birthday Mom" banner with Micah's help.

Later in the day Jim and I took the kids to the rec center to go swimming (which they've been begging to do for a while now) and they had a really good time. Abby (2 years) was begging to go down the water slide but no one could go down with her. They only thing allowed was for someone to catch her at the bottom. Jim walked her up the steps and put her on the slide and let go. At the first turn in the slide Abby flipped around so she was headed down head first on her back. Rebecca was waiting at the bottom to catch her and took Abby's head right to the stomach. From my vantage point it just looked like appendages flying out of that slide. It was so hilarious. Abby disagreed. She was crying but had stopped by the time Jim got her back to me where I was watching from the edge of the kiddie pool. Abby never asked to go down the slide again.

We picked up dinner for the kids on our way home and left the kids at home to eat while Jim took me out to dinner at The Olive Garden.

(note to self: don't let them seat us in the bar area again. It's too noisy (even early on) because of the coffee grinder and the blender for drinks. It's also pretty cold there and the waiter... ugh. The waiter was SO inattentive and talked on and on with another customer about the great party he was going to later where he was going to drink all night long. His goal was to drink in such a way that he would last the entire time until the party ended at 2 a.m. No mixed drinks or shots, he said, because I'm determined to 'last' until 2 a.m. "It's gonna be so great.")

Anyhow, the food was great as usual (I had Eggplant Parmigiana) and I didn't have to cook it or clean up and I didn't have to tell anyone to "sit down - on your bottom - IN your chair - take another bite - use your napkin, not your sleeve" or any such thing.

When we came home Rebecca had the table looking festive with presents all set up. Adam was so pleased that I was FINALLY going to open the presents. I received a lot of nice and very needed things and the kids were so happy to see me opening it all up and Adam asked right away if I would share some of the chocolate with him. (yes, I did)

Then Jim asked if I maybe needed to go to the bathroom. ? Oh, yes, I guess I probably do! I figured they needed me out of there to bring out that ice cream cake I discovered in the freezer when I got out the pork steaks earlier! So I gave them plenty of time while I got engrossed in a Reader's Digest article. Then I came out to more "Happy Birthday, Mom" and got sung to again. Then Abby helped me blow out my candle. Yes, candle. Just one. 39 candles on an ice cream cake would not have been a good idea.

I got several e-cards and snail mail cards and then at the end of the day I got a surprise phone call from a very special friend. It was very unexpected and quite a treat. I got a call from JanD. She was my mom's best friend while I was growing up and she is such a special lady. Her husband was my teacher from the time I was in third grade until I graduated from high school. After I graduated they moved to Taiwan as missionaries for 17(?) years. I visited them there once and helped teach in a summer school they were doing. They've been back in the States for 6 years or so. It was so great to get to talk with her. A spectacular end to a very nice day.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Speaking of which...

Speaking of the whole conception, pregnancy, and birth process being a blessing, check out this story from the UK:

Pre-born Twins Save Mom's Life by Kicking Away Tumor
by Aimee Herd : Feb 4, 2008

UK resident, Michelle Stepney and her husband Scott, were expecting twins. However, at about 17 weeks into the pregnancy, Michelle was rushed to the hospital with what they suspected was a miscarriage. What it turned out to be shocked them.

Doctors at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London told the couple that Michelle had actually had cervical cancer, but that the twins' kicking feet had dislodged the tumor! The bad news came as the Stepneys' physicians urged Michelle to begin immediate chemotherapy treatments, and undergo a hysterectomy—which would terminate the lives of her two unborn daughters.

"If I hadn't been pregnant with the twins, the cancer may not have been discovered until it was too late," Mrs. Stepney explained. "I knew I could have an operation straight away and it would cure me of the cancer, but that would mean getting rid of my babies and I couldn't do that."

Read the rest here.

Our God is so, so good. Isn't He? It's all a blessing. It really is.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

It's ALL a blessing

On the lastest Quiverfull Digest that I received in my e-mail, I read a great entry by a lady named Micklyn. I wanted to share it because I think it's so good:

Hi all.
I just wanted to share something the Lord showed me a while back when I was grieving over miscarriages. (I have had 9 pg's, 4 miscarried, 5 births... last week I had a positive hpt but when I repeated the test on Monday it was negative, so I think this 10th pg may also miscarry. I also have 2 darling adopted sons and 1 darling stepson, so 8 children here with me.) Anyway, Hosea 9:11 reads:

"As for Ephraim, their glory shall fly away like a bird-
No birth, no pregnancy, and no conception!"

This was God's judgement on them. What struck me was not the thought that God is judging me, rather the opposite. In God's eyes, yes, birth is a blessing, but so is pregnancy and so is conception. This means that even though I don't carry a baby to term, God sees my conceiving as His blessing me!! This was a revelation.

I see now that God has been sooo good to me. For every child he has allowed me to birth on earth, he has given me another one in heaven. In the time I've had, i could not have conceived AND given birth to 10 children. But in between my full term pg's, he has seen fit to BLESS me with shorter pregnancies. For each of those I give glory and thanks to him.


Source: Quiverfull Digest #3455

I think that's so great.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Bustin' his britches

My husband, Jim, works really hard so I was happy to accomodate him this morning when he called from work and asked for a special delivery. The kids and I went to his workplace this morning to take him a pair of pants. He had a wardrobe malfunction! He has had a small rip by his back pocket and at work this morning he bent over and the pants gave way! When I showed up, he was wearing his t-shirt and jeans with a flannel shirt tied around his waist which was exactly how I envisioned I would find him!! :-)

Thanks, honey, for working so hard for our family.

We made 'em too

Now Rebecca and I have joined the fun and made Funnel Cakes too. Thanks to KimC at Life in a Shoe for the recipe and tips and to Donna at Handsful for reminding me that I wanted to make them. It was easy, fun, and delicious!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Through the wilderness

Thanks for all the congratulations! I feel sick as a dog but I'm trying to remember to be thankful for that. The only pregnancy I've had where I didn't feel so bad was the one I miscarried. That tends to make me think that sick=good. However, being nauseated is the thing I hate the most. I feel so discouraged and I lack motivation when I feel this way. I just want to be unconscious or totally absorbed in a book or reading SOMETHING online. Obviously that doesn't fit in very well in a homeschooling home with kids ages 2-11. So I have to find my way though this. Actually, I know that I don't have to find my way, I just have to follow the One Who already has the way mapped out for me.

Remember this song?:

"My Lord knows the way through the wilderness,
All I have to do is follow, strength for today is mine always
And all that I need for tomorrow.
My Lord knows the way through the wilderness
All I have to do is follow."

~Sidney E. Cox
Picture: The Wave, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness Area, Arizona

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


It seems I don't have anything to blog about or the inclination for it either. Anything I have on my mind seems too big to discuss and I can't find the words. Also, lately, I'm very consumed with my home life. I suppose that has to do with being gone for 2 1/2 weeks over Thanksgiving and Micah's recent surgery. There's probably more to it but I don't want to get into that right now. More than anything I feel God pruning the dead wood from my life. Really there is so much I've been busy with that has nothing to do with God's purposes being worked out in me. That stuff needs to go!
"Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He [a]prunes it so that it may bear more fruit." John 15:2

God is not as interested in my happiness as He is in my holiness. This business of becoming holy is tough stuff. How much has to go before I have achieved it? Aha! First of all, I'm not the one doing it. This is God's work in me. Second of all, it ALL has to go.

Christ says "Give me All. I don't want so much of your time and so much of your money and so much of your work: I want You. I have not come to torment your natural self, but to kill it. No half-measures are any good. I don't want to cut off a branch here and a branch there, I want to have the whole tree down. I don't want to drill the tooth, or crown it, or stop it, but to have it out. Hand over the whole natural self, all the desires which you think innocent as well as the ones you think wicked-the whole outfit. I will give you a new self instead. In fact, I will give you
Myself: my own will shall become yours."

C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

I think about this a lot in terms of entertainment. I'm starting to wonder if there is any room in our lives for any of the entertainment the world has to offer. There is so much on TV and so many movies available to rent/buy. Most of it is just rotten. The rest can be pretty questionable. In trying to be more choosey in that area and trying to glorify God in my choices, I'm finding that there is almost nothing that is worth watching. What should be my standard? Even in Christian circles I see the standard sounding a bit like this: "Well, it's a lot better than anything else out there" or "It could be worse" or "I've seen worse". That isn't a good standard. When we use that standard for our own behavior we get into trouble. If I use the excuse that "I haven't murdered anybody", or "I don't cheat on my taxes" then I'm comparing myself to what I consider the worst examples (and I come out looking pretty good) rather than comparing myself to God's standard which is Jesus. In that case, I come out looking like I'm in need of a Savior. Which happens to be the truth. I'm going to go out on a limb here (with a saw) and say that I think Hannah Montana is garbage. In researching the show online I find that so many people think it's a great show. Even Christians. That surprised me. Even PluggedInOnline (a media review site by Focus on the Family) gives it a good review. That surprised me also. I guess it's getting good reviews because it's "better than the other stuff out there." I still think it's junk but I have a hard time explaining just why. Here's a stab at it:

-immodest, worldly dress
-inappropriate boy/girl relationships
-focus on self
-inappropriate situations portrayed as funny
-lack of respect for parents (this usually turns around by the end of the episode but it still keeps happening so the lesson never seems to be learned)
-answers lie within oneself

Oh, most of what I just said about Hannah Montana goes for High School Musical and HSM2 also. As you can probably imagine, I'm quite popular with my 11-year-old daughter right now.

We were asked by family members whether or not she could have those movies for Christmas. After researching them online (we had watched Hannah Montana on TV several times) we said No to Hannah but yes to High School Musical. Well, she got Hannah, HSM, HSM2, and HSM2 Behind the Scenes! Yikes! We took away Hannah and let her keep the rest. Yesterday I saw part of HSM2 and I was horrified! I couldn't even stay in the same room. Then it occurred to me that we had only agreed to HSM and not the sequel. When I looked at the review of HSM2 on Plugged In I realized that I would not have agreed to that movie if I had been asked in the first place. I feel like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. I'm more interested in the holiness of my family and less interested in their happiness but, boy, this is hard.

What do you think? Do the titles I've talked about have any redeeming qualities? Am I missing something here?

I guess I thought of something to say! :-)