Saturday, December 22, 2012

What More Could You Want for Christmas?

Merry Christmas, all y'all out in virtual birthy-blogland! I hope this season is finding you blessed, enjoying yourselves, and not a stressed-out mess like I was yesterday.

I wanted to share two really quick - and really awesome! - things with you before I sign off for the season. Enjoy!

First of all... A really awesome article on Gestational Diabetes over at Banned from Baby Showers. Do you want to know more about it? Are you afraid of getting it? Do you have it? This is such an awesome article, by a mama who has multiple experiences with this condition. Check it out!

And secondly... Do you love placentas? Of course you do! Who doesn't? Since that's the case, hop on over and join this Facebook group - The Placenta: A Guide to Examination. This awesome - and extremely active! - group is a place for birth professionals to post pictures of placentas and discuss them in all their glory. For normal birth junkies like me, as well as for the more learned birth professionals among us, this is an amazing place to learn about placenta physiology and variations. I have already learned so much! If we're ever blessed with another little one, I'm already looking forward to examining and dissecting my placenta! Woo hoo!

And that's all for now, folks! I'll see you all next year, so....

~ Merry Christmas! ~

Love to everyone! 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Working for My New Bosses

Nope, I haven't taken a job.... but I do have a boss. Possibly two or three of them.

Can you guess who they are?

My new bosses are... my future daughters-in-law. Wow, that sounds weird to say. Really weird, and somewhat alarming. In other words, some day I will be a mother-in-law. Boy, that is intimidating. 

But more importantly than that scary snippet is the fact that at some point, my husband and I will be called to account for how we parent our sons. 


Because for every parental failing that we let go uncorrected... for every pattern of sin that we let flourish unchecked in our boys... for every untaught skill that we leave unremedied - our daughters-in-law will pay. They will pay in emotional turmoil, in tears, in family strife, in having to live with the faults that we didn't deal with in our parenting journey. 

We have eighteen years with each boy. With our eldest (age six), one third of that time is over. One third of the job we have to do is done, however well or however badly we have done it. But regardless of the quality of our work, time continues on - and whenever each of our boys takes a bride, the truth of our work will out - and the test will come as to how good of a citizen, husband, and father our boys will make.

God, this is one job that I don't want to mess up.

I want our boys to be excellent citizens who make a difference, and to be godly husbands and fathers who lead and direct their families biblically and with excellence. 

Yet I feel so completely and totally inadequate. If I started listing my parenting failings, we'd be here all night. Though I have put blood, sweat, and tears into this parenting gig (massive amounts of all of the above, as a matter of fact), the job that I've done so far feels like... well, like I have so very far to go. And like I have done so poorly, despite my efforts and my prayers. 

If we get to the end of the parenting journey and produce adult sons anything like what we want, it will be by the grace of God alone. 

But I will keep trying. I will keep praying and begging God for guidance and strength. I will fight the good fight. Because it's worth it. It's one fight in life which is truly worth it. After all, it's our God-given job! 

And furthermore, my bosses will have something to say (in another twenty years or so) if I blow it! 

Can you believe that some day these babies will be HUSBANDS?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

In Love With "Loving the Little Years"

This week I have finished my second read-through of Rachel Jankovic's "Loving the Little Years: Motherhood in the Trenches." I cannot say how much I enjoy this book!

"Loving the Little Years" is a small book - not a huge reference tome. And it's not a traditional "mothering young children" parenting book - i.e. the type that says "for misbehavior A, apply solution B." Rather, it is an examination of the various challenges faced by mothers of young children, and an examination of how our own attitudes and spiritual growth can have such a powerful impact on our parenting.

I found myself laughing through this book - firstly because I, like Jankovic, now consider taking out the trash to be "a destination." (Yes, I have arrived at that point.) I love her descriptions (like that one) of "motherhood in the trenches." There's nothing light and easy and flowery about mothering young children! It may be joyful, but it is also hard, heart-wrenching work that can bring you to tears on a regular basis. It is hard work, and is full of moments like those Jankovic describes so aptly (as a mom of five young ones, she should know!).

Secondly, I found myself laughing a bit self-consciously as Jankovic time after time (after time) pinpointed my sins and shortcomings as a mother. Oh, goodness - she really knows me! She nailed me! Jankovic has a unique ability to shine her words like a powerful searchlight into her readers' hearts - she really showed me the areas where my sin is holding back my parenting ability or my relationship with my children, or where my attitude really stinks and needs to be improved. Some of these things I have partly recognized, and some were a complete surprise. All were things that I need to work on, and I am so glad that a woman of such discernment and wisdom was able to speak into my life to let me see where I need work!

 I'm not going to post quotes, because I would end up quoting the whole book. But needless to say, I highly recommend this book! I have numerous parenting books, many of which I love, and this little gem is truly one for the collection - a keeper. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Excellent Post on Severe Morning Sickness

A birth blogger that I follow, Navelgazing Midwife, posted an excellent article on hyperemesis gravidarum. Composed of snippets of testimonies from various hyperemesis mums, it is a wonderful picture of the realities of hyperemesis. Check it out, and share!

Navelgazing Midwife: Hyperemesis Gravidarum

One thing that hits me (again!) as I read this article is how "easy" I had it. My round with hyperemesis would, on the HG scale, rate "mild" or "borderline." I know nothing of the true depths of hyperemesis. My heart goes out to the mums who have been down the darkest paths of HG.

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Ultimate in Maternity Clothes

Have y'all heard? The Modest Mom is now Deborah & Co., and I highly recommend that you march right on over there to check out their awesome selection of maternity and nursing clothing - as well as their women's and girls' clothes. This is an awesome company from one mom who, having a hard time finding attractive and modest maternity clothing, started making her own - and is now the owner of her own clothing business!

My friend owns a maternity skirt from this company, and she lives in it (and swears by it!). I can't wait to buy something from this company myself. This is a great way to support small business, American business, and to get great products. Check out her blog too, which I have enjoyed for several years.

Happy shopping!