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Thursday, July 31, 2014

All of His Details

I got to thinking today about different bits of advice I was given before I had Jonathan. One consistent piece of advice was to continue to go on dates and make your marriage a priority. Kyle and I would nod in agreement as we heard this bit of advice over and over and we would talk about how we weren't worried about this. We knew that we would continue to pursue one another and go on dates and that marriage would remain our priority.

I am thankful that, yes, we have done as advised. But, I will say this, I don't think many mom's go into parenting with the mentality that they will idolize their children and put their husband on the back burner. I don't think that many husbands go into parenting thinking that they will be more excited to come home to their baby than their wife.

Here's the thing. I spend ALL day studying Jonathan. I am looking for signs of health and development. I feed him, change him, wash him, play with him, read to him, sing to him, and the list goes on. I know every small detail of this little person. I know all of his moods, looks, smiles.. I know what makes him laugh, and why he cries.

As my mom would say, these early years with kids are very physical. It's all hands on. I realize my relationship with Kyle shouldn't look like it does with Jonathan. Kyle would find it quite strange if I fed him, washed him and I know he would really prefer that I DO NOT sing to him. (sometimes I do anyway)  But how do I spend my time studying Kyle. I don't want to get so lost in the detailed tasks of motherhood that I stop studying Kyle.

The other day I brought a little something home for him that I knew he would like. I don't even remember what it was anymore, I just remember his response.When I gave it to him he said why did you get this? "Because I know you like it" I said.. "How did you know?!" He was so pleased. "Well, I've been paying attention." ( clearly not close enough attention since I can't remember what it was ) He was so happy the rest of the night. It meant the world to him that I had known him well enough to buy things to his taste and preference as an act of love.

Kyle does a great job of coming home and greeting me before he greets Jonathan. I know sometimes this is hard though. I haven't changed since he left for work, but our little one has. Kyle doesn't want to miss a thing, so it's easy to come home and be all consumed with J. However, he always asks about my day and wants to know all the details, which are pretty boring really.

So, although that little piece of advice seemed a little redundant before having J, I am thankful for the reminder and am working to apply it now.

(In case I forget, I learned this week that Kyle does not like artichokes, really enjoys a pickle to go on the side of his sandwich.)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Voted most likely to be a stay at home mom

Yep, just like the title says, in High School I was voted tallest (Which was always funny to me since it's a matter of fact, not something that can be voted on.) and most likely to be a stay at home mom.

When I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would tell my friends and family I wanted to be a mom. My family never said much about this. They supported my desire. However, it was regularly talked about that were my oldest sister not to get married and have kids, she would make a fabulous lawyer. My second oldest sister had many ambitions as we grew up, but the most consistent thing she stuck with was wanting to open a children's home. My younger sister with all of her talent could have chosen (and still could) any path. The battle was always between music and being a killer business woman. My youngest sister is still exploring her passions, (that sounded so new-age, but I meant it in a totally normal way) However, she LOVES animals, would love to live on a farm, and maybe be a vet.....

My friends would say, "yeah, yeah, you want to be a mom, we'll all be moms, but what do you want to DO?"

Always my reply was "be a stay at home mom".

Sometimes I felt like I was unimaginative, or like I had no ambition. Have you seen the Italian Job? Do you remember when they are all talking about what they are going to do with all their money and Edward Norton's character says, "That sounds good.. I'll take one of each of what you said". Later in the movie this scene is referenced as his weakness, a lack of imagination. Now, I am not in the business of stealing and I don't back-stab my friends for all of their stolen money like Ed's character did...  However, I felt a bit like him at times. Unimaginative because I didn't have a "real" goal. I just wanted to be a mom.

Fast-forward about 15 years and my oldest sister has 3 children. She's a GREAT mom. There are many ways in which she is a great mom, but let me tell you, the mind and talent that would have made her a great lawyer is now making her a great mom. She is going to home school her kids and you better believe they will get a great education and be thinkers.  My second oldest sister is also a GREAT mom, all of the love and tenderness that would have given her the strength to open a children's home and welcome in the needy, that same love and tenderness is lavished on her children. My younger sister doesn't have children yet, but if/when she does, I can guarantee you there won't be a dull moment in her home. The kids will be exposed to the arts and great literature, and they will each be instilled with a killer instinct to work hard and achieve their goals. I can't wait to see what my youngest sisters home will look like. I pray she gets her farm.

I only have one kid right now, and as you know he is almost 6 months old. So we are yet to see what our home will look like and how our kids turn out.. but let me tell you something.

I'm living my dream.

I am a wife, and I am a stay at home mom, and I couldn't be happier. I'm not perfect at it, not by a long shot. But, I get to live my dream! How cool is that?!

Every day I get to make my home a little cozier, love on my baby a little bit more, serve my husband a little bit better... How cool is that?!

I find I have more specific dreams than I did when I was little. I hope to have a yard and a garden one day. Small dreams, but they are mine.

Until then I will  "Rejoice always.... give thanks in everything...." The Lord has let me live my dream.
(1 Thess. 5:16-18)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A Summer Study

This summer a few women and myself have been studying Reformed Theology. It's something I have studied before and thought I had a pretty good grasp of. However, I really wanted to dig in deeper and so I emailed my pastor about what books he would recommend. He and our associate pastor recommended a number, but the top 2 were "Chosen by God" by Sproul, and "The Five Points of Calvinism defined, defended, and documented" by Steele Thomas & Quinn.

I have LOVED them! They really remind you of your standing before the Lord, explain opposing views, and really shine a light on the character of God... which is why I pulled out my trusty copy of "The attributes of God" by Pink to read along side the other two books.

So, if you find you don't know what to study, or you just want to brush up on your theology, or you need a crash course in being THANKFUL daily that the Lord chose you, well then give these books a try.

( I have a list of books on church history to do next..... so excited!)

In other news. Jonathan and I have been on the hunt for a good high chair. I want one that can strap to a regular chair. Our place is too small for a full high chair. Well, I got one at Target the other day that was a huge NO. It kind of leaned forward, so poor Jonathan couldn't sit up in it unless he really tried hard... here are some pics. (It is pure coincidence that the books I mentioned earlier are in these pictures)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Motherhood lately

Jonathan is teething. I have learned that there is teething... and then there is TEETHING.

We were sleeping in nice long stretches through the night, for about a week, and then the bad teething kicked in and he wakes up in pain throughout the night.

Yes, I have those "Wonderful Hylands Teething Tablets", and I think they are wonderful too, for the 2 minutes that they work.

Yes, I have infant oragel, and I think it's wonderful, for the 2 minutes that it works.

Yes, I have infant Tylenol. I love it, I love it because it works, and for more than 2 minutes!

I went from loving babycenter online (What a great place to ask some of your new mommy questions!) to hating babycenter. It's just a place where all of us new moms ask the exact same question and then guess at the answer, because none of us are medical professionals. So, all that we discover is that we all have babies that are going through the same thing, so we must all be normal right? Right? Please somebody tell me that I'm right and we are all normal!!! Also,the moms use abbreviations in ways I don't understand. They constantly refer to their children as "LO's"... My LO stopped sleeping through the night.... My LO is eating a lot more lately.. My LO is OT lately, am I keeping her up too long?.... All I know is that Jonathan is in no way an "LO".. I can't figure it out.

So, what is my solution to finding out the answers I seek? I make a list for my doctor. However, the list changes daily because my son changes daily. Thank the Lord for older sisters!!! I usually just call one of them with my non-medical emergencies and am usually told, that I have a baby, and babies change, and I'm ok.

Except for the other day.

I called my oldest sister because I had a horrible first mom experience. Below is how my sister has reported the story.

Since Bekki had baby Jonathan she has occasionally called me with "new mom" questions and they've all been normal until today. 
Bekki: "Um, Katie, so, well, I was changing Jonathan's diaper and (pause) well, well I didn't get him covered up fast enough and he peed, and it went straight in his mouth, what do I do?"
Me: Well, pretty sure there is nothing to do.
Bekki: I am the worse Mom ever

I did proceed to wash Jonathan's mouth out, and he did NOT like that. 

This is motherhood lately. It's a blast, it's a learning experience, and I am tired. I am sure that coffee is proof that God loves mothers.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Jonathan's Songs

I try and read to Jonathan and sing to him and play music for him at least a little bit every day. What ends up happening is that I get his songs stuck in my head and I sing them to myself all day. It's been a blessing in disguise. These songs are just a couple of lines and usually no more than 2 verses. But as simple as they are, they carry truth in their words. Simple truth's that remind me of child-like faith.

"Be careful little eye's what you see. For the father up above is looking down in love, so be careful little eyes what you see. ( and then it's hands, feet, mind, mouth, and heart)

"Trust and Obey, for there is no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey."

"I have the peace that passes understanding down in my heart... because.. I have the love of Jesus down in my heart."

"My God is so BIG, so Strong, and so Mighty, there's nothing my God cannot do."

"I will enter His gates with thanksgiving in my heart, I will enter His courts with Praise. I will say this is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice for He has made me glad."

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

my 2 cents

I don't know if there are an increasing number of "motherhood" blogs/posts/articles out on the web, or if I am just noticing them more because I am in the motherhood stage of life now. Either way, I am seeing a lot of opinions on the topic.

 I am constantly seeing articles such as "what nobody told me" "I never knew how tired I could be" "the 5 things about being a mom I wish someone would have said" "What labor is really like" "What raising kids is really like"... you get the picture.

Almost all of the articles talk about fatigue, emotions, feeling run down, having a constant foggy brain and the like. Some of the articles talk about the true hardships of being a mom that no one wants to admit to, some talk about how it's all just so much better than anyone could have explained, yay for rainbows and sunshine! Well, here is my 2 cents.

I was going to give a disclaimer about all the things I love about my baby and about being a mom so that you didn't think I was a horrible person, but that's not the point of what I want to say, so I'm just going to dive in.

It doesn't really matter how tired you are. How everything is different than you thought. How sometimes you just want to break down and cry. How you didn't feel "that connection" to your baby immediately. If you are a happy mom, that is awesome! Continue to dwell on the good, and thank the Lord for your experience. If you are struggling.. well stop reading the articles. They don't help you dwell on truth. They just make you feel better about yourself for a moment before you hear your baby cry and you break down again.

We are called to motherhood, If you are a mom it is what the Lord has ordained for you and He has given plenty to study and focus on about this topic in His Word. Obey what you are called to do and the feelings will follow. Maybe not that moment, or that day, but the feelings will follow. The Lord blesses obedience. Quit reading articles that feed your emotions (which cannot be trusted due to lack of sleep) and read the Word.

If you are a mom who is truly struggling... ask for help.  My 2 older sisters have had some truly hard times in their early motherhood years. I can't imagine going through some of the things they have. I learned so much from watching them put their pride away and ask for godly counsel, and then heed that counsel.

Today is the day that the Lord has made, REJOICE, and be GLAD in it!