Tag Archives: Parenting

The Final Countdown

31 May

It really is the final countdown.  The last day.  Things will never be the same after tomorrow.  Any way I choose to see or say it, life changes tomorrow.

Kasen Cross Tiger will arrive via C-Section sometime between 9 & 10am Friday, June 1, 2012.  My heart is all aflutter as my arms eagerly await the new bundle of joy to love on.

Kasen Cross at 38 wks. He is sucking on his hand, and is all scrunched up.

Still, I know today will either fly by or creep along.  I will feel like I didn’t get everything done, and I’m pretty certain that not much rest will be had tonight.  So imagine my delight when I read my devotion earlier:

“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.

He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.

My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge.

Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.”

Psalm 62:5-8

Even though my C-Section is scheduled, I believe it is the best option for my and Kasen’s safety, and I have full confidence in my doctor’s ability to deliver Kasen successfully, there is still anxiety clinging to my thoughts.  The what if’s and uncertainties are not easy to shake off.  How glad I am that when I am weak, He is strong.  I will need that strength not only tomorrow, but most surely in the days, weeks, and months ahead as I adjust to life as a mother of two darling boys.

So I will pour out my heart, I will pour out my soul, trusting in God’s grace and provision.  I will seek rest in Him instead of relying on my comfy fort of pillows that have been my bed fellows for the past 9 months.  I will rejoice in the great gift God has given when we hold our sweet new baby boy and know that God will continue to guide our journey, one step at a time.

Gracefully~~Heather

 

Ready or Not…Here He Comes?

22 May

Today just might be the day.  Kasen’s birth day that is!

I know.  What happened to June?  Well, when we went in to my OB for my check-up and ultrasound Friday we were told by my wonderful doctor that my amniotic fluid levels were low.  Huh?  Apparently this can happen later in the third trimester and it can send the baby into distress if not monitored closely.  The fluid levels are supposed to be between 5-20, with 5 being the danger zone.  Mine were at a 7.7.  My doctor said we were in the cautious zone, to go home and hydrate and rest, then come back in Tuesday for another ultrasound.  He said if my levels dropped or even stayed the same, he would likely deliver Kasen right away.

I hydrated really well and rested some.  Resting wasn’t easy to do in the midst of our huge 10th anniversary celebration all weekend for the church, including the open house here at the parsonage.  Good news: My house is cleaner than it’s been in 2 years and I survived!  We had over 100 kids join the celebration at the church carnival, almost 200 for worship Sunday, and raised almost $49,000 for our Miracle Sunday offering, cutting our church payoff in half! Micah also suffered an injury at the carnival; a black eye courtesy of a stray foot on the inflatable slide.  He is quite proud of his “blue eye!”  My Mima also ended up in the hospital with some irregularities in her heart, so I was so torn not being able to be with her.  (She is doing a bit better and might be released tomorrow!)

Monday then rolled around and it was all about Micah day. Continue reading

Good to Grow

16 May

This was my Mother’s Day present.  My pretty little purple teacup orchid.  I love orchids and it may be one of the few plants I can actually keep alive and help flourish.  My husband had gotten me another purple orchid plant about four years ago, and it was a glorious beauty. When we moved home to Oklahoma from Kentucky I left my plant in the care of my good friend, Heather, as a sign that our friendship would continue to flourish after we left.  It has.

It was a Just Add Ice Orchid, meaning I literally only had to add 3 pieces of ice, one time a week and keep it in indirect sunlight, and it grew and grew.  While this new one is not the same “brand”, I am hoping that adding 2ish pieces of ice a week to hydrate my little lovely will produce similar results.

As I sat gazing at my pretty present that was meant to celebrate me as a mother, I started thinking of how my plant was not the only tender thing that I was responsible for nourishing and growing with care.

I sat, almost 37 wks pregnant with my second son, looking at a portrait of our oldest son as it hung behind the orchid, and the enormous responsibility and gift of these little lives struck me with such intensity that I lost my breath for a moment.

Am I a good enough mother?  Do I know enough?  What if I make mistakes?  What about my flaws?  Can I give them what they need?  Is my love enough?

Am I enough?

My gaze didn’t have to travel far from the flower to linger upon the cross nearby.  And I had my answer.

No.  I am not enough.  But God is.

His love and grace, poured out through me is enough.

When I am weak, He will be there.  When I fail, His plans will succeed.  When I stumble, He will pick me up.

He will be the guide for my journey as a mother, and a light for my boys to seek and follow.

His love will be enough to nourish and grow them even when mine may fall short.

I can tenderly care for my plant by keeping it watered just right and providing the right amount of sunlight for growth.  If I neglect it or accidentally leave it in the shadows it may wither.

By trusting my boys to God’s tender care, I can trust that I will know the right amount of love they need for their souls to be nourished, and the perfect place of the Son in their lives for ultimate growth.

Why?

Because God is enough.

 

(This will be my only post for a little while as I finish preparing for the parsonage open house during our church’s 10 yr celebration, and Kasen’s very soon impending arrival.  Have a great week!)

Gracefully~~Heather

To C-Section or not to C-Section, Is that the Only Question?

4 May

Yesterday, I reached my 35th week of my pregnancy, and I was expected to have a decision ready for my doctor.  We were supposed to decide if we would schedule a repeat C-Section for Kasen’s birth, or if I will attempt a VBAC (Vaginal Birth after Caesarean) through a trial of labor.  Despite already knowing most of the information concerning either route, in the two weeks I had between appointments, I devoured all the resources available from my “What to Expect” book, the web, and friends and family.  As my appointment drew nearer I wavered back and forth.  I just didn’t feel settled.  No sense of peace could be found about a decision.

During my first OB appointment this was one of the topics we discussed, and my doctor’s answer at the time was that we had time to make a final decision, but he was willing to let me try a VBAC.  Since that first appointment, way back in October 2011, I have been pretty set on going the VBAC route for a number of reasons. Continue reading

Spring has Sprung

20 Mar Like father, like son

While the forecast for this week is full of rain, storms, and gloominess, this past Saturday was B-E-A-Utiful!  The weather has been so warm already, and while this doesn’t bode well for this very pregnant mom (almost 29 wks!) in the remaining months, it has been wonderful to have an early Spring to enjoy with our little man.

The hubs and I have really been treasuring these last few months we will have with Micah as our only little boy.  While we know our joy will only increase once Kasen arrives to bless our family, we are enjoying the heck out of these last precious months of just us three.  I still wonder how I will love another child as much as I do my little man. I know I will, but it is just hard to wrap my head around.

So, back to Saturday… Micah wanted to go out in the backyard to play.  Normally, we wouldn’t have hesitated, but with the Aaron’s crazy busy schedule at the church, he had not had a chance to mow yet.  The yard was a bit high, like up to Micah’s knees in some spots.  We have crazy, growing grass.  Don’t judge! But we were plied with a puppy eyes and this,  “Outside, pease?!  Pease Mommy, Daddy?” How could we say no?  We had plans to go in to town that evening for dinner and shopping, so while the hubs jumped in the shower, I agreed to take Micah out in the backyard.

(There’s more…..) Continue reading

Prep Mode: Day 24: Lent Journey

20 Mar

 

 

“”Now listen, daughter, don’t miss a word:
      forget your country, put your home behind you.
   Be here—the king is wild for you.
      Since he’s your lord, adore him.  Set your mind now on sons—
      don’t dote on father and grandfather.
   You’ll set your sons up as princes
      all over the earth.

Psalm 45:10-11, 16 (The Message)

Today, I am just going to let this scripture be the focus.  I am working on a little more in-depth post covering some touchy issues, and I don’t want to rush it.  The inspiration came late last night.  I feel like God is really wanting this message to be a bit more than usual, so please bear with me until tomorrow.

I also overdid it a bit yesterday!  The hubs took the day off (after a long week last week) and we worked on the yard before the rain hit; he mowed and I weeded some and picked up trash from the yard.  Our yard is a pass-through for people (aggravating), and they dump their trash.  I often see empty cigarette cartons lying in the grass.  Fun for the kiddo to find.  After the yard came painting!  Yep, we got the nursery painted.  Two coats in a room with no ceiling fan in humid, rainy, warm weather=no fun for this pregnant mom.  Even with breaks between walls, for me, I was done in.  So glad I put on a roast in the slow cooker so no dinner prep was expected later!

I went to pick up the little guy from his babysitter (whom he had been asking to go see ALL weekend), and we went over to see a family from the church so Micah could play with their 3 kids and the hubs could move some furniture back into the nursery.  I love watching Micah interact with these kids.  They love him, and he adores them. They are older by a few years, but they are so great with him.  It was a battle to leave, but once convinced we had to go home to see daddy, he was on board.  He is a very loving child and likes to give hugs and kisses, and he has started giving them to everyone when we leave somewhere.  As he made his rounds to say goodbye, he decided Ella, their 7 yr. old daughter needed some extra kisses.  He kissed her like 6 times until she kissed him back, even once on her nose!  Sweet, adorable, and funny, but oh my….he is going to be a handful when he gets older!  I got him home and his motor ran on full speed until I finally sang him to sleep at 9.  He’s really fighting sleep these days.  So not fun.

Needless to say, I am taking a day to rest some, recover, and focus on renewing my spirit in the gloomy rain.

Check out the above scripture and let it ruminate.

I hope to see you tomorrow for a few new posts!

Gracefully~~Heather

 

St. Patty’s Day Poem, er Limerick

17 Mar

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!!

I heard some commotion coming from the back of the house.  I thought it might be leprechauns trying to scurry off with my wee lad.  I went to investigate:

This is what I discovered! His eyes are twinkling with mischief..

Micah and Aaron were playing fort, but obliged a few snapshots…

Getting a grin and displaying his art

This is the real Micah!

My friend, Leanne Penny, is inspiring clean limericks over on her blog today!

Check her rhymes and great writing here at leannepenny.com

Here was my contribution:

My Wee Hunk
There once was a lad with such spunk
Whose joy could dispel quite the funk
His smile was so bright
His kisses a delight,
All the lasses declared him a hunk!

Happy St. Patty’s Day!  Have some fun!

Gracefully~~Heather

Where Are You?: Day 19: Lent Journey

15 Mar

 

 

“God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. I’m an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking. You know when I leave and when I get back; I’m never out of your sight. You know everything I’m going to say before I start the first sentence. I look behind me and you’re there, then up ahead and you’re there, too- your reassuring presence, coming and going. This is too much, too wonderful- I can’t take it all in!”

Psalm 139:1-6, (The Message)

One of Micah’s favorite games to play is Hide And Seek.  He’s almost 2 1/2.  He’s not the world’s best hider.  We have been playing the game with him since around his first birthday, and he has gotten much better.  One of us use to have to hide with him, and constantly remind him to be still and quiet.  This usually lasted all of ten seconds before he was wiggling away to go find the seeker.  Then he was able to hide on his own, though his constant giggles would give his position away frequently.  Now, while his choice of hiding spots may not be a surprise, he has learned to be still and quiet when hiding.  I know the day will come soon, when Micah discovers a hiding spot that stumps Aaron and I, and we will walk around the house, calling his name, hoping he answers before I panic and call in reinforcements.

Hide And Seek is a game most of us learned to play at an early age.  It’s also a game many of us think we can play with God.  However, we tend to enlist the Hide only version of the game, hoping God will not seek us out.  Or we wonder if God is seeking us.  I know there have been many times in my life when I ran from God, hoping to hide something I had done.  I knew better; I knew God would seek me out, but I ran anyways.  If I close or cover my eyes, and can’t see God, He can’t see me, right? Continue reading

Easy Easter Art for Kids

7 Mar

I’ve been eating up simple craft and art ideas lately, tucking them away in my Micah file.  I know they will come in handy when Kasen arrives and I need something easy and quick to divert Micah’s attention and energy.  With Easter just around the corner, there are tons of Easter and Spring crafts floating around.  I saw one on Pinterest recently of a hand-print turned Easter bunny, and I was inspired.

While we include the Easter Bunny, eggs, candy, and all that jazz in our celebration, we also make sure our emphasis is focused on the real reason for Easter; Christ’s resurrection.  So, I thought, how can I put a faith spin on some fun and easy Easter art?  I only had to look as far as my hand!  Micah loves to have his hand traced and has a blast creating art from his handiwork! (Get it?!) =)

Here is what I came up with:

Micah gladly lent me his precious hand to trace and he enjoyed helping “color” with mommy’s paint pens.  (Markers would have been easier, but I could only find the crayola wonder markers!)

I only traced his 3 middle fingers creating the 3 crosses, and the base of his hand for the hill.  We decided the grass covering the dirt was a fun way to show new life springing forth.

Simple, easy to do on a large scale (Sunday School), and a fun craft to remind our kids that Easter is about Christ first!

Given the place of honor on our kid-friendly fridge!

What fun Easter art have you seen floating around?

Gracefully~~Heather

For the Expecting Mom: Hospital Survival Kit

2 Mar Mom's Hospital Survival Kit

My Own Road's Hospital Survival Kit: Essentials Mom Will Want but Might Forget

I adore this idea I came across on Pinterest!  I ventured on over to the original link at Jen’s fabulous and crafty blog, My Own Road to check it out.

Ever wonder what to take to the hospital when visiting a mom and baby?  Most people take a sweet gift for the little bundle of joy.  But what about the mom?! She usually gets flowers that will wilt or balloons that will deflate.  Pretty, but what about something a little more useful?  Most moms, new and experienced, take a bag full of necessities to the hospital. (Most take things we’ll never use the first time.  I speak from experience!) There are some items though that I wish I would have taken or had with me the first time.  This is where Jen’s, from My Own Road, nifty gift idea comes in.  Why not take a pretty bag full of thoughtful “survival” items?  Jen also created and provided links for the fun printables (in pink and blue) to attach to the bag.  Here is what Jen suggested go in the bag.

Check out Jen’s post at My Own Road to see the detailed list and get the printables.  I’d also suggest checking out some of her other great ideas while there!

Jen got me thinking.  She asked at the end of her post, what things we might include in a survival kit.  Not only were there several items I have already added to my necessity list for when Kasen comes in June, I am attending a baby shower Saturday for my cousin, Julie, who is expecting her first baby soon. (A girl!) I decided I would see what I had in stock to use as a mock-up, and do this fun post.  Here is what I came up with!  Continue reading