Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Women in the Word Wednesdays: May 19-25

Thoughts on what I've read this past week...

Thursday 5/19: 2 Timothy 1:5
I can't make my parents be "Eunice's" and "Lois's", but I can become one for my own kids and grandkids.

Friday 5/20: Proverbs 6:20-22
Eventually Abby will make decisions for herself, and my words will be in her head, so how and what have I taught her? Both directly and indirectly?

Monday 5/23 (Abby's first birthday!): Psalm 127:3
Read the verse in the Message translation
heritage = "something reserved for one" "something that is reserved for a particular person or group or the outcome of an action, way of life, etc."
reward = "something given or received in return or recompense for service, merit, hardship, etc."
Abby is a gift to me from God. She was reserved specifically for me!

Tuesday 5/24: Matthew 28:19-20
Go-->make disciples-->baptize-->teach. I usually think of this verse in terms of witnessing to the world. But I can make disciples right in my own home! It's also comforting to realize I won't be doing it alone.

Wednesday 5/25: Luke 6:40
Sometimes I'm scared to think Abby could be just like me. But I can continue to learn myself, and then I can teach and train her. The Message translation puts an interesting twist on this verse: "An apprentice doesn't lecture the master. The point is to be careful who you follow as your teacher." So I need to be the kind of teacher she would want to follow...

Started reading the Introduction to The Ministry of Motherhood. Thoughts on that tomorrow (hopefully!)...

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A little more than a year ago...

I realized that this time last year I never posted Abby's birth story. I'd typed it up, and posted it on Facebook, but never on here. So here you go, if you're one of those people who would be interested in this type of thing!

I was a week overdue when I woke up around 8:00 am Saturday May 22. I felt some light cramping that came and went throughout the morning. By noon I could definitely tell they were contractions, and were getting stronger and closer together. I started timing and writing them down, the interesting thing was that I rarely had any that would last a full minute or longer. The timing was pretty sporadic, every 5-10 minutes by noon, but some would come every 3-4 minutes and only last 30 seconds.

I talked to the on-call doctor, and she said to head on in to the hospital, especially since I live 45 minutes away and had tested positive for Group-B Strep. Rocky and I got to the hospital round 4:00 pm, and the contractions were getting pretty strong by then. We were listening to a cd on the way in, and it was all I could do to breathe and focus on the beat of the song until the contraction passed!

We got into triage and I was checked and already at 4 cm (I’d been 1-2 at my check-up two days before). We were officially admitted, and got into a labor & delivery room. I was hooked up to a fluid IV and a bag of antibiotics for the Group-B Strep. The next few hours passed slowly, at one point I was checked and at a 5-6, so I decided to try the whirlpool to relax me. The water was nice to sit in, but it didn’t relax me at all. The contractions were getting really intense, and when I was checked after being in the pool, I was still only at a 6.

That’s when I decided to go ahead and get an epidural. It was already 9:00 pm, and not only had I been laboring all day, but my body is ready for bed by that time anyway! We had to finish getting the whole bag of fluid in me before I could take it though, so I had to wait a little longer… that was one of the toughest times of waiting all night. I got the shakes really badly just before the anesthesiologist started working on me, but we got them to go away. I had a couple of contractions during the process, but managed to stay still, it’s amazing what you can force your body to do when you realize “I won’t feel this in 10 minutes…”

Once the epidural took effect (10:00 or so), we dimmed the lights and tried to get some rest. I never actually slept but it felt so good to lay there and rest. I could still feel some of the pressure from the contractions, but none of the pain. I didn’t realize how strong of back labor I was having until I couldn’t feel it anymore! My water broke around 11:30 pm. I was checked again and surprisingly already dilated to 8 cm. The doctors had told me an epidural often slowed the progression of labor so it could easily be another 6 hours before I would deliver. I was glad to hear things were going well.

Around 1:00 am we had quite a scare – I was listening to Abby’s heartbeat on the monitor and it started getting really quiet. I was thinking my belly monitor had slipped, when all of a sudden about 8 nurses and doctors rushed in to the room and started getting me to flip from side to side, gave me an oxygen mask, made me sit on all fours… apparently her heartrate had dropped too much. They put an internal monitor on her and we got her heart back up and holding steady. Everyone cleared out, and I stayed on the oxygen just to give her a little more.

I was checked, and I heard the amazing words that I was complete! My doctor was paged, and the 15-20 minutes before she got there were the second toughest time of waiting all night… The previous hour I had not been able to sleep because the contractions were causing so much pressure I thought Abby was going to just fall out! The pressure was so intense it was painful, in spite of the epidural. I can’t imagine what it would have felt like if I hadn’t gotten it…

Finally the doctor arrived, everything got set up and explained to me, everyone took their positions, and with the next contraction I started pushing. By that point I was just focusing on doing whatever they told me to do, and I have to say my nurses and doctors were amazing! Things were moving very quickly and my contractions were very close together. They could see her head, and there was some meconium on it, so we needed to try and get her out as quick as possible in case she had been swallowing any of it. The doctor gave me an episiotomy to help things along, and the forceps were brought out but we never needed them! All of a sudden there was a head and shoulders, and I heard “one more push… oh maybe not!” as she slid all the way out. I’d only been pushing for 10 minutes, maybe 4 contractions worth. She was officially born at 1:44 am on Sunday May 23.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Musical Mondays: My Girl

This song actually reminds me of two separate events... The first being my freshman year of college, when Rocky and I had been dating for about 2 weeks. It was Valentine's Day, and we had a Campus Crusade meeting that night, and Rocky told me to make sure I got there early. I did. He was on the music team, and their last song before the meeting started was "My Girl." Wow was I ever in puppy love. :)

The second thing this song reminds me of is -- of course -- my Abby-girl. Today is her first birthday. One year ago right now the 3 of us were waking up in the hospital room (after not sleeping much in the past 3 hours) to a beautiful, sunshine-y, May day. In about 2-3 hours we would have our first visitors. We would take TONS of pictures. And we could not stop smiling.

I've got sunshine on a cloudy day
When it's cold outside, I've got the month of May

Well, I guess you'll say
What can make me feel this way?
My girl...
Talkin' 'bout my girl.

I've got so much honey the bees envy me
I've got a sweeter song than the birds in the trees
Well, I guess you'll say
What can make me feel this way?
My girl...
Talkin' 'bout my girl.

I'm really at a loss for words. I can't believe it's been a year already, but then again she's done so much in the past year. I love you baby girl, and I hope we have a great day today. :)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Women in the Word Wednesdays

You may remember one of my New Year's resolutions was to be in the Word every day. Wow, looking back it was #1 on my list. And I haven't been doing too well. As time has gone on, I've chosen to spend my mornings after Rocky leaves "relaxing" with Facebook and reading the bunch of blogs I have in my Google Reader. Well that's gonna change!! I found out about a website/blog called Good Morning Girls. I joined up with a group of ladies in Michigan who are sharing emails every couple of days, keeping each other accountable for being in the Word. GMG has provided a reading schedule of a verse a day for the next 12 weeks. So here are a few thoughts I've had from what we've read this week...

Monday 5/16: Psalm 127:1
God needs to be the builder of my home -- involved in the laying of every piece, not just the foundation, but all the other little bricks in our live too.

Tuesday 5/17: John 15:4-5
No branch can bear fruit on it's own. It has to be connected to a source. I can't serve and fully bear God's fruit for others to enjoy by myself.

Wednesday 5/18: Matthew 6:33
From my Life Application Bible notes: "...turn to God first for help, fill your thoughts with his desires, take his character for your pattern... What is really important to you? ["these things" = v. 31: what shall we eat? drink? wear?] ...Any of these can quickly become most important to you if you don't actively choose to give God first place in every area of your life." (italics and brackets mine)

Starting next week we will also be doing a book study on Sally Clarkson's The Ministry of Motherhood. (the book picture on Amazon doesn't match the actual cover of the book...) Be on the lookout for this book to be featured in the next few weeks in my Book Talk Tuesday/Thursday! :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

My First Blogging Award!

ver·sa·tile - adj - embracing a variety of subjects, fields, or skills; turning with ease from one thing to another.

What a pleasant surprise I found when I checked my email a few days ago... Colleen over at Cheap Wine and Cookies had chosen me for a Versatile Blogger award!

Isn't it puurrrrty? :) I've seen these types of "awards" floating around on some of the blogs I read, but this is the first time I've gotten one myself. Yay! Thank you thank you thank you Colleen!!!

Here are the official rules for this award:
  • Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post.
  • Tell your readers seven (7) things about yourself.
  • Give this award to fifteen (15) recently discovered bloggers.
  • Contact those bloggers and let them in on the exciting news.

So here we go... Seven things about me:
  1. I love to read. When I was little I spent a lot of time alone (my brother is 6 1/2 years younger than me) and I read A LOT of books. My favorite day of the week was Fridays when I could go to the library and get the next 2-3 books in whatever series I happened to be in.
  2. I collect spoons. Not eating spoons, but souvenir spoons. It started when I was 4 and went on a trip out west with my mom & dad. They bought me a collector's spoon in every state we visited. I now try and look for a spoon every time we go somewhere new. I have 38 of my own, and 22 from my late mother-in-law, who also collected spoons.
  3. I took a sheep management class in college. I got to do things like castrate lambs and spend the night in the sheep barn just off campus watching for baby lambs to be born. (I went to Michigan State)
  4. I was a drum major in my high school marching band. It was an interesting role for me, as I was (and still am) quite the introverted person. But I decided to go for it, and was one of 3 drum majors both my junior and senior years. Marching band is probably the only thing I miss about high school.
  5. Speaking of high school, I do have one regret: that I never was involved in the school plays. A lot of my friends were in them, but between my introverted personality, and my super-busy schedule with 4H and church, I never tried out. I now go and watch a number of high school dramas each year (I know a lot of kids, and Rocky runs lights & sound for NPC's), and I find myself wishing I'd done it. There just aren't the opportunities for that kind of thing now.
  6. Have you ever taken those personality quizzes that rank you based on 4 animals -- lion, otter, beaver, golden retriever? I am very much a beaver. VERY much. A few points in the lion and golden retriever categories, none in the otter. Lots in the beaver category.
  7. I enjoy web design. I currently work on our church's website. It needs some work, and I'm actually in the process of starting it over fresh with a new template. That's the kind of thing I like to do in my spare time. 
Ok, enough about me! Time to pick some award winners! I really don't think I'm going to do 15... While I do follow a lot of blogs (<----- as you can see from my list over there), a lot of them are very specialized and focused on a specific topic or niche. So I'm really going to search my list for "versatile" bloggers!

Here are my chosen winners, in alphabetical order! (since that's the order I found them in :)

Bread, Water, and Chocolate - One of my closest friends growing up, Kelly says, "I am a wife, mother, friend, and daughter. I cook, clean, shop, organize, clip coupons, and bargain hunt. I love my life and the people who are in it. I have so much to be thankful for!"

In the Whisper - Monica has such a passion and a gift for writing. She writes about her family, she writes about Scripture, she even writes about writing. You really should follow her!

Lovin' Life with Lucy - I met Sadie through Kelly, and I love reading her posts about her daughter who is only two weeks older than my Abby! "The other loves of my life include Dr. Pepper, Olive Garden, my family, TV, chocolate, and writing about myself!"

A New Mommy's Blog - Rachel and I seem to write about a lot of the same types of everyday-life things. Her blog tagline sums it up well: "My Wonderful Life and my Random Rants"

Straayer's Scribbles - Liz is one of my husband's co-workers, and while it's been awhile since she's written, she's been a little busy - the newest member of her family was born right around Easter! I hope she gets back into blogging again, "thoughts on my life or that of my family, thoughts on my work, thoughts on my pets, thoughts on devotions or sermons; random knitting projects and personal patterns." You at least need to check out her awesome Etsy store.

the blue room - Rachel always has great things to say. "Some days I'm loud and demonstrative. Other days I think and wonder. And sometimes I write. This is my blue room, my sanctuary space."

The Laundry List - Another mom who writes about things similar to what I do: "The Laundry List is a forum for my thoughts on writing, mothering, budgeting, politics, cloth diapering and pretty much any other aspect of my life. It represents that endless list of things that need attention in life, many of which define who we are."

Through the Wrong End of the Telescope - I love Jess's blog ties to Dr. Seuss. She's a newly-wed working as a nurse, and her blog will really "wake up your brain cells."

So how many is that... 8? Good enough for me. :) Congrats to you all, I love reading your blogs!!

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Some of you may remember this post from last summer. (shoot, looks like the picture is no longer there - it was a picture of tennis shoes :) Operation: Get Healthy has been on my mind a lot lately. I've been really fed up with not having things to wear and not liking pictures of myself. Really. It's been a pretty emotionally draining winter.

But I think things are on the up-and-up! It all started when I gave up ice cream for Lent. That may not be an issue for some, but in this house, almost every night Rocky wants some ice cream while grading papers or lesson planning. And I usually join him. But for 7 weeks I resisted. It was hard, but it was good.

In the middle of that came the Step Challenge. I was on a team with teachers from our school and we all wore a pedometer for 6 weeks. It was a competition through the insurance company, and teams of teachers and school staff from all across the country competed for weekly prizes. The ultimate goal was to get 10,000 steps a day, or 70,000 a week. But the "lower" goal was 50,000 a week. Holy cow, I didn't realize how few steps I naturally take a day! I think only 2-3 of those weeks I managed to get above 50k, and never did I hit 70k.

But now that both Lent and the Step Challenge are over, Rocky and I talked about a new, personal challenge. I got to keep my pedometer, and so I am still challenging myself to get to 10k steps a day. And if I do, I can have a small bowl of ice cream with Rocky that night if I so choose.

This morning I stepped on the bathroom scale and saw a new number - one I haven't seen in well over a year. I'm not going to share that number with you (what woman would?!), but I will say I've broken a milestone I've been longing to see. I'm still a ways away from my pre-pregnancy weight, and even then I could have stood to lose a few more, but I've got a whole summer of walking ahead of me! And I'm excited to be on my way to my goal!

While it's not all about the numbers, it sure was the motivation I needed this morning. That "you're doing something right" feeling. And how did I celebrate? I laced up my tennis shoes and walked with Abby to the FCCS Barn Sale. And back.

I'm up to 9400 steps already. Looks like I might be having some ice cream tonight - but then again, maybe I won't. :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


The first thing that comes to mind when I think of organic things, is "why are they so expensive?!" The second thing that comes to mind is the variety of organic things available: food, cosmetic items, etc. And the third thing that comes to mind is "if I want my family (and my baby) to be healthy, I should buy organic..."

With it finally feeling like spring, I'm finding myself dreaming of produce stands and farmers markets. (<-- this picture makes my mouth water!!) It is so stinkin' hard to get quality produce the majority of the year here in Michigan, especially when all that's available is the stuff shipped in to Meijer from across the globe. I've forgone many "fresh" fruits and veggies the last few months because I can't find anything truly "fresh." And frozen beans and corn can only go so far.

I look at my daughter's meals on any given day and often cringe. Pasta. Bread. Occasional chicken or ground beef. Cheese (she loves cheese). Bananas are the one fruit I always try to have on hand for her. I want her to grow up with a love of healthy food, but how do I expose her to it? Other than the 3-4 months of fresh produce we have here, what can I do?

Why is the organic food section of the store so much more expensive?? I've been trained to always look for the cheapest - generic cereal, generic vitamins, generic generic generic... So why should I pay $2 extra for food that *may* be healthier, when over time that extra cost really adds up?

Sigh. I haven't looked into it, but I really hope there is a farmers market in Belding that Abby and I can walk to every week this summer. I guess we'll enjoy the good stuff while we can...

On another, brighter note, I did plant my mini veggie garden yesterday! So we should have some fresh food all our own. :) That's a post for another day...

Monday, May 2, 2011

Musical Mondays: Baby Einstein

Ok so this post will be a bit of a tangent from Musical Mondays... but it's still related to music I guess!

Last night Abby woke up at least twice. This from the girl who's been sleeping through the night since 6 weeks. Something is really wrong when she wakes up crying in the middle of the night. Every time something goes wrong with her I blame it on teething... even though she only cut 2 teeth at Christmas and nothing since. Well the past few days her drool machine has kicked into overtime, so I think it really (really!) is teething this time. And she came down with a snotty nose. And she has a bit of a fever this morning. But she might have come down with a cold too, or still have remnants of her ear infection... You could just tell she really didn't feel well.

So when she woke up again at 5:45 and would not go back to sleep, I gave in and fixed her a bottle and prepared to be up with her for awhile. Rocky was up getting ready for school anyway. After he left, Abby just wanted to cling to her blanket and snuggle. I popped a Baby Einstein DVD in the computer and we kicked back for 40 minutes. After which I made her another small bottle and put her down for a nap (at the time when she's usually waking up for the day...).

Before Abby was born, I'd decided I would not be one of "those" mothers who sit their kids in front of the tv. The thought of videos such as Baby Einstein and even Praise Baby made me roll my eyes. "They surely don't get anything from those movies, and even if they do, shouldn't that be things I teach them?"

Fast forward to last fall. Abby was about 5 months old, and I went to FCCS's Barn Sale. Someone had donated a whole bunch of Baby Einstein DVDs and CDs. I thumbed through them, and one in particular caught my eye: Baby Wordsworth. We were planning on trying some baby sign language with Abby, and I thought maybe this will be a good supplement.

Over the last 6 months Abby and I have watched that video a handful of times, usually on nasty winter days when we want to snuggle and kill 40 minutes of time in the afternoon. This morning she smiled, and laughed, and I got a refresher course on some household sign language words!

I'm still pretty against tv in general, especially for children. We don't have cable, and we don't even have a tv that works with antenna channels after the big switch to HD a few years ago. There really isn't much good stuff on anymore anyway. Rocky and I will watch the occasional episode of NCIS or Fringe online every week or two. But we've decided we have much better things we can do with our time the rest of the time.

Who knows if Abby's occasional exposure to classical music through Baby Einstein will make her smarter in the long run. She gets enough music from other sources in our family... :)

What are your thoughts on tv & movies? In general & for children?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...