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, March 31, 2011

Book Review!

I am planning to do a book review of an excellent parenting book I am in the midst of reading. It is from Ironwood Camp and is written by Debi Pryde. I have read her books before, but this is my first time reading her book for mothersl, and I know her daughter so I am certain Mrs. Pryde did something right as a mom. The book is titled Parenting with Wisdom and you can purchase it at this link. Here are a few interesting tidbits about the book:

  • It is written by a mother for mothers. She understands us!

  • It is FILLED with scripture. Most statements are made after presenting scripture, and those that are her opinion are clearly marked as such. There is none of this "XYZ is what you need to do, thus saith the Lord" unless the Lord really did say so.

  • It is easy to read and not at all stuffy.

  • It has case studies that could easily be used as discussion in a Bible study/mom's group type setting.

  • It recognizes that while dads are vital to the raising of children, much of the true task of parenting falls on the mom's shoulders, and provides mom with careful instruction on how to do her job well.

  • It provides hope for a mommy struggling with maintaining control at times.

  • It does NOT require you to let your infant scream for hours on end in order to be a "good parent" - while I do believe letting an older baby cry comes into play at some point, I always balked at the books that recommend doing so with a newborn. I just never quite could do that.

I am already halfway through the book and could start right away, but I was curious if anyone was interested in reading along with me and doing a discussion? If you are, leave a comment and I will wait a couple of weeks to start the study to give you time to get a copy. If not, I will do my own review/summary in an attempt to consolidate my thoughts before they flee. If you do get a copy, have your highlighter ready!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

T-Tapp Week 5

So this was my worst week for inch loss, but still good - 5 1/2 inches. That makes a total of 35 inches! My clothes are fitting better for sure, and I hope for my first SIZE loss this coming month.

It's kind of hard to judge size loss, though, because i think I was refusing to be the size I truly was. So I said I wore a certain size, but probably wore the size above. So who knows. What I do know is I can button shirts I've been wearing as jackets, without a gap. I can sit all day to work in my "skinny" jeans without having to unbutton them, and my family noticed.

We spent the day in the car yesterday which always causes me to be, well, bloated. I also missed one day of exercise because I had a very sore back. so I am happy.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sometimes

Sometimes I still think about my baby.

Sometimes I wonder how he or she would have fit into this family.

Sometimes, I wish I were shopping for maternity clothes rather than rejoicing in lost inches through T-Tapp.

Sometimes, when those around me who are pregnant announce their genders, some getting the much-desired gender they do not have, I wonder if that baby was “our boy.” Will I never know the joy of raising a son here on this earth?

Sometimes, I wonder how I will feel when those who got pregnant around the time I did are giving birth.

Yet, sometimes, I am so grateful I am not expecting right now. There has been a lot going on. I am not coping with some of it well. My hands feel full.

And when I feel those feelings, I feel tremendous guilt. How could I be glad my baby is gone?

I never named the baby. I know a lot of women who lose a baby do. For me, because I do not know his/her gender, he/she doesn’t have a name. Then, in a way I feel like I am letting that baby down.

I guess I need to rely in the fact that God knows what I can handle, had something He wanted me to learn or still learn from that experience, and will give us another child if and when He feels it is the right time.

I know for a fact that I have more compassion now than I did before for those struggling with loss or dealing with infertility. While I am not dealing with infertility, I do think I have a slight grasp of some of those emotions. The joy you feel for your friends combined with the intense sadness for yourself, then the thought that you are being selfish.

When I was pregnant with Miss N, my very close friend was also expecting. She ended up losing that baby. I never quite knew what to do – I was heartbroken for her, yet rejoicing for myself. Maybe I can understand her emotions somewhat more than I did before.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Unexpected Fears

Sometimes, my children surprise me with their fears. I picked up my littlest one from Mom's Day Out the other day to learn that she had had a complete meltdown at lunch time.

The culprit?

"Owls say whoo whoo."

We had heard an owl that morning when getting into the car, and apparently it had scared her, unbeknownst to me. She has talked about that quite a bit since then, and it didn't really stop until I found and showed her a picture of an owl. I don't think she knew what they were.

A couple of nights ago I was putting the girls to bed and we were starting in on the brushing teeth/going potty part of the process. I think I said I was tired or yawned, and Miss N said, "Why are you so tired?"

"I must be getting old," I joked, in the way you can when you are 30 and tired.

She got a horrified look on her face and started to tear up. "Mommy, you are NOT old. I don't want my mommy to be old, You are NOT old."

She ran over and gave me a hug and said, "I love you mommy."

I was touched by this and of course assured her that I was making a joke and am not, in fact "old."

Sometimes, I sit back and look at then and just wonder, what are their precious little minds thinking?

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sisters Forever


Lately, I have been noticing signs that my two girls really do love one another and are becoming friends. We have our fair share of sibling rivalry and days when I throw my hands up in surrender thinking I am raising worst enemies. Then, I get little glimmers into what life with a sister can really be like.


This week Miss N got her first minor scraped knee of the season. I was doctoring it up because it was pretty dirty, and she was crying pretty hard. Miss M went and got her a toy of some sort and patted her on the back. "Thanks (sob) Miss M, (sob), You're my BEST friend." was the response. in the midst of the tears, this mommy's heart was melting. I told her, "That's right, and your sister is a friend who will always be part of your life." She will soon enough know the temporary heartache that comes from "best friends" who move to a new school after the school year, I fear, with the upcoming end of preschool and start of kindergarten.


There was another time that Miss N was crying over something, and Miss M came over and hugged her, "It Otay, Na-Na."


One day this week we went to the park with friends. I watched as Miss N, for the beginning of our time there, chose her sister as her primary playmate. While I wanted and encouraged her to play with her friends, it warmed my heart to see that she chose to play with her sister, rather than push her away.


Finally, and I cannot remember the reason for this one, there was one time when Miss N gave M an unsolicited hug and spouted, "SISTERS FOREVER!" So incredibly sweet.


I have been trying to build this relationship by giving them ample time to play unsupervised, so they are not vying for my attention. It seems to be working. I think the fact that Miss M is becoming more and more clearly vocal is also helping. Regardless, I am thrilled to see a relationship developing between my girls. The sisterhood I never experienced is a blessing to watch in my home. I pray that this will be a lifelong relationship that will continue to grow and develop so they truly are the best of friends. They are 2 years, 4 months apart in age - I do think it's possible, don't you?


I am linking up to Project 52 at Simply Modern Mom. Check out the link to read more stories and see more pictures from real moms.

Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Saturday, March 19, 2011

T-Tapp Week 4

This week on T-Tapp I was not feeling very confident. I was retaining water, and if you are a lady reading this you will understand, and we'll just leave it at that.

So here is my result: I lost 8 inches and gained 1/2 inch in two areas, the lower abdomen and one arm, for a net loss of 7 inches. This puts my total net loss in 4 weeks at 29 1/2

Here is what confuses me a little. That is a lot of loss, but I'm still in the same clothing size? But then I realized, there are 14 measuring sites, which means that the loss is spread over the entire body. Also, my clothes are fitting better - I think before I started T-Tapp I was squeezing myself into my clothes. Some are getting loose - one pair of workout shorts was falling off last week!

There's also something called "fat shift" that happens with T-tapp, according to the trainers I met on the forum. Before the fat is burnt off, it has to make room for the muscle. So, I have had some gains in my upper belly while losing 4 inches in my lower belly, so that affects things.

I cannot wait to see what the next week brings! Once I get my tax bill paid, I plan to get the treadmill out and alternate running/walking with T-Tapp. We are going to KC next Friday, and you know what's beautiful about this workout? I can take it with me!

I know several people who have purchased T-Tapp because of my posts. I HIGHLY recommend spending some time on the forum here. This is the fastest place to get questions answered, and lovely T-Tapp trainers and successful T-Tappers are on there daily to answer them and encourage you. Please, check out the forum before you jump in - there is so much about this program that I don't know how to explain!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Haircut!

Miss M has always had a lot of hair. She's only 2 1/2 and she's had at least five haircuts, the first being before she turned 2. Today, we went to a beauty shop for the first time because our in-home hair dresser was having a baby today. My little girl has her shortest cut yet and it's so cute!

Before! This was jumping on the trampoline (the shirt was self-chosen and I'm too lazy to iron a two-year-old's shirt on an at-home day)

During

After: Mommy: Can you sit here and look at me so I can take your picture?

Miss M: NO picture!

Mommy: Please?

This was the resulting pout


A slightly better "after" shot.


I am linking up to Simply Modern Mom this week!

Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Monday, March 14, 2011

Nap Time Battles

So the issue at hand in our family that seems to be directing everything is naps and bedtime with our youngest.

I vaguely remember having a similar issue with our oldest at age 2, but with her there was only one sleeper to worry about, so we could just let her scream until she realized she wasn’t going to win.

Here is the issue. Miss M would really rather not nap anymore. Yet, I believe she still needs to nap, and I know without a doubt her sister does.

This battle has been ongoing for months, and there have been days she hasn’t napped. On those days she is a mess by 6:00. We eat dinner at about 6:00. Makes for an interesting evening.

The day after non-napping days are horrible. Bedtime on non-napping days is horrible. Oh wait, bedtime is horrible all of the time. Nevermind.

I believe that my children need to have “quiet time” regardless of whether or not they sleep. BUT, Miss M will not be quiet. And it’s not just that she’s whispering or playing quietly. She will not BE quiet. She is so loud she will prevent my oldest from her much-needed sleep.

Here’s a typical day. Start naptime routine around 1. Get kids in bed by 1:30. Go potty a second time. Get upset because of blankets. Start singing/kicking/screaming/getting out of bed. FINALLY settling around 2:30, at which time mommy is ready to scream, yell, or cry. By the time she falls asleep at 3, I need to wake her in just an hour to prevent a bedtime disaster. She is cranky the rest of the evening because she didn’t get enough of a nap and is tired. NO MATTER HOW TIRED SHE IS, she starts the same thing again at bedtime.

Oh, and here’s the kicker – she rarely does this for Tim. She does sometimes, but usually only for me.

It’s a battle, or a power struggle.

All of the “experts” say not to make sleep time a power struggle. But what can I do? She needs her sleep, and her sister DESPERATELY needs her sleep. A couple of times I had one child screaming because I was telling her to be still and quiet and the other child sobbing because she couldn’t sleep.

It’s horrible.

But then, we will have four or five days in a row where it is all wonderful. And I will think I have overcome this battle.

But it will never end.

Now, I know some of my friends think I should just let her stop napping and go to bed at 6, because they have told me so. Here is why I can’t:

First, I work. I need that 2 hours in the afternoon to work. If she’s not going to nap, she has to play independently so I can work, and she’s 2, she can’t do that.

Second, we are not always home by 6 in the evening. Swimming lessons, church, and family responsibilities keep us out in the evenings. I want to be able to continue doing those things and not be tied down to my child’s sleep schedule.

Third, Miss N has to sleep. IF she doesn’t she is a winy, emotional mess. It is not fair for her to be put into that position because her little sister will not be quiet.

Fourth, if I can get her to be still and quiet for more than 10 minutes, she will fall asleep. The battle is to get her to do that. So that tells me she is tired and needs the rest.

Fifth, my husband gets home at 5:30 or 6. Daddy time is important, especially since he often works on Saturdays as well as every day during the week and Sundays are full of church. If my children do not nap we would have to start bedtime around 6, which would mean they would need to eat at 4:30. Which would mean cooking twice, no daddy time, no family meal. I’m not OK with that. Daddy time and family meals are important to me!

Sixth, I think in the summer when we are more active and outdoors, she is going to be more tired. I don’t want to give up yet and then have to try to “go back.”

It’s getting bad around here. I am to the point that I dread those nap times/bed times and rejoice when it is daddy’s turn. I don’t want to feel that way! I want bedtime/nap time to be a sweet memory for my children, not a huge battle! She won't watch TV, so a quiet movie while sister sleeps won't work. She won't do anything that is still and quiet, except puzzles which require help, for more than a few moments. She's 2.

I really don’t know what to do! I'm not really asking for advice, because I've been given lots and nothing is working. I guess I will just keep trucking and insisting she lay quiet at rest but I am emotionally exhausted from this and it is affecting my relationship with my precious girl. Ok, now I need to go have a good cry. Mommy life is hard!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

T-Tapp Week 3

I had a slight gain in my abdomen (1/4 inch) which could be related to water retention (sorry, TMI)

Lost 8 inches total, with tremendous 2-inch loss in the lower abdomen (the extra flab/skin from pregnancies resides there). This one I have visibly noticed this week.

Total for 3 weeks is 22 3/4 inches of net loss. Oh, and I gave up pop, and that probably has helped too. Let me tell you, Hoedowns work wonders for hte mid afternoon slump that typically sent me for the caffeine.

When I was exercising last night, my shorts did NOT want to stay on.

I also FINALLY lost a little in my thighs and calves - not much in the calves, but loss is loss and I am learning it all adds up.

I cannot mention enough how thankful I am to have found T-Tapp. So, plan is one more week of T-Tapp only, then probably anohter week or so since we will be headed to KC soon, and when we return adding back in running/walking as long as my knee will allow. With T-Tapp from what I understand you have to be careful about over training because of the comprehensiveness of the workout, but I should be safe if I stick to the shorter workouts on non-running days.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Happy Birthday, Miss N!


Five years ago today, I became a mother. This tiny bundle has led me on the most amazing journey. I won’t say my “greatest” adventure, as marriage to my husband has been quite a ride, but she has changed me, grown me, and molded me into the woman God wants me to be.
Natalie: One Year Old

Five seems so old! She is officially no longer a baby in any way shape or form. I'm not super sentimental, and I loved four-year-old life. I'm not sure if I am ready for the next stage quite yet though.

Natalie: Two Years Old

Natalie: Three Years Old

Natalie: Four Years Old!

Natalie: Five years old!

Here are some accomplishments over the last year:

First sleepover at a friend's house.
Learning to read! (just short vowel three-letter words, but read them she does!)
Going to camp for the first time.
Asking Christ to be her Savior.
Starting preschool.
Getting over a fear of the water.
Getting glasses.

I'm sure there are more, but I am beyond tired, so this list will have to suffice for tonight.



Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Miss N's Five-Year-Old Interview


Happy Birthday to Miss N! In honor of my newly-turned five-year-old, I am starting an annual interview. So here are her questions and answers! Later if I have time I will post the annual "see how I've grown" post.


What is your favorite color?

Pink and purple

What do you want to be when you grow up?

A mommy and a horse rider

Who is/are your best friends?

Abriana, Hannah, Aliyah, Ben, Abby, Lilli, Joie, Maddie, Alyssa

What is your favorite thing to do?

Go to the museum

What is your favorite cereal?

Life and Cheerios

What is your favorite vegetable?

Carrots

What is your favorite drink?

Chocolate milk and juice

What is your favorite toy?

Horseys, cows, and donkeys

What is your favorite TV show?

Magic School Bus

What is your favorite game?

Long Memory, Candy Land

What is your favorite book?

My princess book

What is your favorite restaurant?

The ones that give out toys

What is your favorite holiday?

Halloween

What is your favorite animal?

Donkey, Cow, Horsey

If you could change your name, what would you choose?

Lucy

What do you love about each person in our family?

Daddy – He has the fun in the house.
Mommy – Huggies
Megan – Wrestle time
Cookie – Tummy rubs
Bailey - Love

Where would you like to go on vacation?

The Beach

What are some of your wishes for this year?

A unicorn birfday, and I think I want to wish my self a happy birfday

Saturday, March 5, 2011

T-Tapp Week 2

Here are my results:

I lost 9 inches, but gained 1/4 inch in one of my arms. So that makes a net loss of 8 3/4 inches. The total for the two weeks is now 15 inches. Again, this is just 15-20 minutes of exercise, 6 days per week. I am also in the process of giving up pop, so I'm sure that's not hurting anything. Other than that, no dieting. Trying to be wiser in my choices, but no true dieting.

2 inches total on waist. 1 1/4 on the tush.

Most of the loss so far ha been upper body - chest, pecs, bust. That might sound bad (who want to loose in the bust, right?) but when you have that nasty "back fat," it's a good thing. Upper body was not getting toned at all with running. I haven't lost much on the legs or arms, but I am sure that will come, and honestly, I'm ok with my lets for now. Sure, I would like to tone them, but they are not my biggest "problem" - I want my gut gone!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Mommy Can I Touch the Bubbles

Ok, I've been blogging way too often. So much on my mind and so much I want to remember! But, I am tyring to do the Project 52 project consistently, so here is a post for this week.

Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

I was soaking a pan in some dish soap and water, and it had been soaking for a while. (For the record, it was nothing nasty, just some little bit of something stuck in a corner I couldn't get out. In other words, the water was fairly clean.)

"Mommy, can I touch the bubbles?" Miss N asked.

The water was cool, so I said yes. The next thing I knew we had both sides of the sink filled with soapy water and two happy little girls playing together - for an hour! With no fighting.

(The thing that appears to be a pile of something yucky in the corner of the picture is actually no bake cookies cooling on the counter that we had just finished making together).





Too Much Time at School

I think I have been spending too much time at Miss N's school. Between the Valentine's party and some volunteering I have done, I have gotten bit by the bug. I miss teaching! It's official!

Oh, but I don't miss getting up and dragging everyone out the door by 7:30, bringing home piles and piles of papers, trying to figure out what to cook for dinner after spending all day with little people, dealing with parents (now I am the parent, 'gulp'), and all of the other non-teaching aspects of teaching.

But, by golly, I miss the classroom! I miss seeing faces light up with understanding (Ok, those times were few and far between with middle schoolers), and the hugs and jokes and friendship with coworkers.

Kids are funny. I enjoy being around them. I enjoy the process of teaching.

I could go back, but we are going to have more babies. If I stop writing and drop my clients, it will not be so easy to start back up again.

Is God trying to tell me something? Are my days as a writer limited? Is he going to pull me back to school?

I really love the dynamic at Miss N's school. The teachers get along so nicely and the administrator seems like an all-over nice guy.

Hopefully this is a limited bug. I do enjoy writing. I just miss the classroom.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Big Day

"Mommy, I want to get something for Mrs. C for her birfday. A radio."

This came out of the blue in the car one day. I have learned with this child not to brush off things like this because she's usually been thinking about it for a while. (Mrs. C is the much-adored K4 teacher.)

"A radio? Why? Is this something she wants?"

"Yes, because hers is broken. The top is broken off and we have to get Miss Melissa's radio to listen to music and sometimes we can't listen to the fishie song. So she needs one."

"Do you know when her birthday is?"

"No. Maybe you should ask her."

Finding out was easy enough, since the birthday list was posted on the wall. There are a lot of birthdays this month! The next step was finding out if there was a CD player that was within the teacher gift buying budget. There was. Miss N was soooo excited when we found it.

She was also worried too, "Mommy, I hope no one else gets Mrs. C a radio, or that she opens mine first. Do you think I can ask her to open mine first? I don't want her to not like it if she gets another one."

I was fairly certain there would not be another CD player, but I assured her that if there were, Mrs. C could return our CD player and get something else that was nice for the classroom. I knew what store it came from and could tell her.

Since the teacher's birthday was on the first day of the month and Miss N has a calendar she received from her aunt, she knew it was today. She bounded out of her room this morning (normally we have to wake her up on school days) and announced, "Today's the big day Mommy!"

"What big day?"

"You know, it's Mrs. C's Birfday! I can't wait to give her the radio. Do you think someone else got her a radio?"

We stashed the radio and card in the backpack, and off she went to school. I wished I could have been a fly on the wall to see her give it to her teacher because she was so very excited. When I came later to the class it was out of the box and in use, so I assume there was not another CD player given. :) As a former teacher, I was glad to be able to brigthen a teacher's "birfday" a little bit too.

I love this kid, and I hope she is always sensitive to the needs and desires of those around her!