About Me

I am a proud wife and mother, and a born again Christian. I work from home as a writer while taking care of Miss N, our six-year-old, Miss M, our four-year-old and Miss C, our newest bundle of joy. Life is crazy but so much fun!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Feed Me Books Friday

I am joining in on a fun link-up from my friend Janna at The Adventure of Motherhood. It's called Feed Me Books Friday and is a chance for you to talk about some of your favorite children's books. Since my favorite class in college was Children's Literature, this is right up my alley! So without further delay, I bring you:

Feed Me Books Friday

One of our favorite books is Pinkalicious
written and delightfully illustrated by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann, whom I do believe are sisters.

Pinkalicious loves pink. When her mom asks her what color the cupcakes they are making should be, she replies, "Pink, Pink, PINK!" She eats so many pink cupcakes that she's bouncing off of the walls. In the morning, she has turned pink!

At first, Pinkalicious (whose real name we never quite learn) is thrilled to be pink. She even cries pink tears of happiness, but quickly she learns that pink is not all it's cracked up to be. Her mom rushes her to the pediatrician, where she learns she has an "acute case of Pinkatitis." She is instructed to eat a steady diet of green foods, and no pink foods, until it clears up.

Well, Pinkalicious is not thrilled with this, and does not obey. In fact, she sneaks just one more pink cupcake before bed. In the morning, she is red! To find out if she changes back, you will need to pick up your own copy and read Pinkalicious with your little girl.

I love this book because the illustrations are whimsical and fun, and it's written from a first-person point of view, so Natalie really seems to connect with the little girl. I also love the fact that when she disobeys, she gets a consequence. She has to do the right thing in the end to turn back to her normal, beautiful self. Also, some of the phrasing in the book is just delightful to read. For some reason, saying "I had one more pink cupcake." feels fun on my tongue. There's also a great mom-quote in this book: "You get what you get and you don't get upset!"

I will say that Pinkalicious has two sequels. One, Purplicious (Pinkalicious)
, we checked out from the library and I was not impressed with. In it the kids tease Pinkalicious for liking "baby" colors, and the teasing is not addressed as I would have liked. There is a third that I have not read called Goldilicious (Pinkalicious)
, but I heard from a friend that it is pretty cute.

I was going to share another, but I think that's enough for one post. I can't wait to see what others have to share!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Oh to Be This Tender

Tonight on the way home from church, Natalie says, "Dear God, I want to be your servant." The music was playing and the engine was running, so I didn't hear the rest of what she said, but I am so thankful that I heard that little tidbit. Oh to be that tender myself, and to help her keep that tenderness as she grows!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Are You an Emotional Mother?

I am not an emotional mother.

Sure, I cried when they drew blood from my two-year-old who was miserable sick.

Oh, and I cried both times my kids were born and I heard their cry and saw them for the first time.

And I got angry when Natalie told me kids at school called her weird.

But most of the time I am not an emotional mother. I love to hear “I love you” and get sweet hugs and kisses, but they don’t make my heart “jump” or put a tear in my eye. It doesn’t break my heart to hear my baby crying. It stirs me to action, sure, but I have not struggled with letting the baby cry if she needs it.

Is that bad? Is that something that I should try to change?

Or is it just who I am?

I read other mother’s blogs and talk to other mothers who are constantly tearing up and getting choked up about their kids. They are reminiscing about “when they were tiny” and morning the passing baby years. I am not like that. I rejoice in each new accomplishment and look forward to each upcoming stage. While I enjoy the toddler years, I am reveling in the conversations of the preschool years. I don’t look back on the toddler years sadly, but with a fondness and appreciation while enjoying what has come and looking forward to what is coming.

In thinking on this today I wonder if there is any biblical principle to consider. I know that the Bible states multiple times how a mother’s instinct is to care for her children. I care for my children. I meet their every need and most of their wants. I give them good things. Perhaps the principle is that I should not be comparing myself to others. Hmmm.

My mother is an emotional mother. I love her for it. My friend Janna writes as an emotional mother. I love her for it. I am not an emotional mother.

Is that so wrong?

These two little girls are loved beyond measure, and told so regularly, hugged on, and kissed on, but I am not emotional.

Am I a less adept mother?

Or just a little too logical?

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Beginning of Wisdom

Sunday our pastor preached a message on The Fear of the Lord. Little did I know it was going to apply to parenting! It was much needed for this mommy.

Proverbs 1:7 says "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."

I pray often for wisdom. I need it like I need air to breathe when it comes to raising my girls. That verse in and of itself was crucial to me this week.

However, the sermon also had some other tidbits of truth for me. Pastor spoke about how we as humans are motivated. Fear is one motivation. We do things because we fear the consequence. Another is reward. We do things because we want reward. These are the most basic motivations. Fearing the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, because it is the most basic motivation.

Next in line is the motivation of duty. Often we do things because we feel it is our duty. The most honorable and highest motivation is love.

He then had an illustration of how this relates to parenting. When a child is a preschooler, they respond to physical motivation. Punishment and reward are what they respond to. Biblical discipline creates right actions. It does not really matter what the heart attitude is. You can be parenting selfishly or selflessly, but the motivation will work.

When the child hits ages 8-10, she begins to sense the attitude. If you are parenting with a selfless heart, they will notice. In these ages the physical reward or punishment is still effective, but the heart also matters because they notice and remember. They will catch on if you are parenting selfishly.

When the child hits age 16, you can no longer apply the physical punishment. You can attempt to ground, take car privileges away, and such, but if the child is going to rebel, she will rebel. You cannot force obedience. At this stage of life, the child doesn't just sense selflessness, but she responds to it.

I am sure I am not explaining this correctly or clearly. What I came away with is this: My heart attitude as a parent and disciplinarian is being molded now, while my children are small. My sinful heart leans towards selfishness (This is mommy time, how dare she interrupt! Can't she see I am on the phone! Why won't she sleep, I need to work! I can't believe I am up again this night - sure she's sick but I am tired!) Do you notice how many times this mommy uses "I" in her mental dialogue? Not pretty! I need to change.

If I am parenting out of love as the motivator, not fear, reward, or duty, I will parent in a selfless way. I will be making decisions and disciplining based on what is best for my children, not what is best for me.

I need help in this regard, but I now know where to turn! It starts with a basic fear of the Lord, which really starts with understanding more about His character. In 2010, I think I am going to focus on learning to love my Lord all over again. This will help me to be a better parent as well.

Friday, January 1, 2010

A Look Back at a Decade

We have just entered a new decade. I'm not a highly sentimental person, most of the time, but when I look back over the past decade, i realize that some of the most important events of my life have occurred from 2000-2009. Here is my tribute to the decade:

1. My husband got saved.
2. I toured Israel.
3. I graduated college.
4. I got my first teaching job.
5. I discovered freelance writing.
6. I got married to my best friend and moved to Rockford.
7. We bought our first house.
8. We had two beautiful children.
9. I had my first major surgery (c-section with Megan).
10. I traveled to the island of Guam (farther than I have ever gone, and probably the farthest I ever will go).
11. We became members of Heritage Baptist Church.
12. I discovered FACEBOOK!
13. I learned what it really means to be an adult (can't I go back to being 13 and having the biggest problem in my life being my frizzy hair and the fact that so-and-so didn't want to sit by me at lunch?)
14. I lost two grandparents - the first close loved ones I have lost.
15. I spent my first time in the ER with my child - an experience I don't wish to repeat but probably will someday.

I am sure there are more milestones, but it is pretty amazing to look back and realize all of the change a decade can bring! I look forward to the next decade serving my Savior and loving on the family he has given me!