Sunday, October 31, 2010

Multitude Monday 291-303

I cannot believe October is over.  October is one of my favorite months, and it flew by much too quickly this year.
This weekend was such a blessing.  Not only was I encouraged and challenged by the women's retreat (more on that later this week), but I was able to get away while The Hubs took care of Bubby, the dog, and the house.  I came back Saturday evening, and things looked well-maintained.  No new clutter, no big messes, no sink full of dishes (the dishwasher was even unloaded), no chaos after my time away. In addition, this morning we went to late service, and The Hubs took care of the morning stuff - dog out, Bubby changed and fed, etc. - so I could sleep in an extra hour even though I'd already had a bunch of "time off" this weekend.  I know there are times when The Hubs and I drive each other crazy, and we are much too human as we don't put each other first, but this weekend he went above and beyond, and I am so thankful.

holy experience
And my list continues
291. Alicia Chole's questions
292. time to really reflect
293. having a few ah-ha moments - some of which were also ouch moments
294. getting to know some people better
295. beautiful end of October weather
296. cutest little tiger at all Halloween events (of course I am biased)
297. polite children at trunk-or-treat
298. my friend's five year old's chat with Bubby - he is the cutest five year old I know - think Jerry Maguire kid
299. Reese's Peanut Butter cups
300. everything being okay with Mac2.0 after another scare Friday
301. friends and family who pray for us - especially in crisis
302. a funny nurse who prescribed a pumpkin pie concrete
303. being twenty-nine weeks along - every week after this will be a new experience for me!

Happy Halloween

alicia chole

Alicia Chole has an amazing gift.
I had quite the spiritual workout today.  It was good, it was hard, it was just what I needed.
If you have never heard of her, she is a former atheist, a very academic yet very free-spirited/artist type of person.
I will eventually be blogging about the workout I had.
But my brain hurts.

Friday, October 29, 2010

a little break

Tonight and tomorrow I am going to our church's women's retreat.  I went two years ago, but I didn't go last year because Bubby was still too young for me to leave him.  I am a little nervous about leaving Bubby overnight - the most I have been away from him is a few hours.  But this will be a great trial run for when I am in the hospital, and I know The Hubs will do a great job.
However I am very much looking forward to some girl time and some God-time.
And one of my favorite speakers is the person doing the sessions.  She spoke for Spiritual Emphasis Week one year in college, and she was amazing.

And did I mention I am excited about a mini-break? 

Thursday, October 28, 2010


his words echoed at 2 a.m. as sleep evaded me
and I wondered if my words were thumping in his head as well
the white flag of surrender had waved earlier in the evening
for the baby needed dinner and a bath
yet we still secretly held onto the ends of our tug-of-war-rope
not pulling any more
but not letting go

and the morning came
with puffy eyes and stick-up hair
and we went about our days cordially
until lunch time
when our hands got tired of holding on
and we noticed the ropeburn and blisters

so we said the right words there in the sunlight on a drive across town
and in the moonlight the injured and callused hands intertwined
with tender words echoing this time
replacing the criticisms and contempt
with truth and grace and love

with true intimacy also comes such vulnerability
and the ability to hurt like no one else can
so why do we choose this at times
when we can just as easily mend and build and heal

the healing begins again
embrace of mercy
promise of hope
words of commitment
lifetime of surrendering to self

and it is good

linking with one of my favorite communities -  Emily and imperfect prose

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

snapshots of grace

One of my favorite blogs has been doing a month long series on grace. We have been asked to post snapshots of grace.  Here's mine.

3lbs 6 oz of grace, hope, love

"Look how far I've come!"

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

the knot

Have you ever felt like something you said was blown out of proportion?  One sentence where you thought you were just sharing a feeling to which the other person essentially tells you, "Do not pass Go.  Do not collect $200."
And the more you try to explain what you said and why you said it, the bigger the mess becomes.  Like trying to untie a hideous knot - making it worse and more untangle-able to the point where you want to get the scissors and just cut the stupid thing out but you don't even know if scissors will make their way through.
On top of that the frustrating thing is you have done so well not making knots and messes lately, at least you thought you had, until this knot seems to lead you to attempt to untie all sorts of other knots that you didn't even know existed any more.  But they do.  This makes you want to throw up your hands in despair and forget ever buying shoes with laces again and just wear flipflops and high heels for the rest of your life.  Because tennis shoes are usually not so cute anyway, and they only go with jeans and sweats.
But perhaps this is just the progesterone talking. 

Monday, October 25, 2010

neat stuff my kid is doing :)

We had Bubby's IFSP meeting because November will be six months since we originally met. IFSP is basically IEP for early childhood.  He had three goals - crawling, pulling to stand, and cruising on furniture - and he has met all three.  I am so happy because six months ago we were still working on getting him to put himself into sitting.  He has come so far, and I am thankful.  Now we have one new goal - which I think will be written as two - walking independently - inside and outside.  Our physical therapist doesn't think it will be too long with the way he is picking things up - just lots of different ways of practicing, and to help with any sensory issues he may have we are adding "brushing" to his "joint compressions" so that he has better body awareness.

What else is Bubs doing?
  • Waving to say hi and bye - though his wave often times is more towards himself than the person coming/going
  • Clapping hands and bouncing to music
  • Pointing to the cd player to request music
  • Pointing to objects when we ask where they are - for example he is great at finding the piano, the lamp, the couch, the dog, the kitchen, the tv (grrr), pillow, the fan, dada, and sometimes mama.  If I am holding him/asking him to find mama he does not do well. I think it confuses him. He probably is like, "Don't you know where you are, Mom?"
  • Playing with the dog - he likes to throw a tennis ball to her and if we are not careful, Bubby will try to put the dog's chew toy in his mouth - yuck!
  • Pointing to body parts - adding more and more - he now knows eyes, ears, nose, mouth/teeth, head/hair, toes, foot, fingers, belly/bellybutton 
  • Throwing things out of the bathtub, such as the cup I use to rinse his hair, especially when filled with water
  • He can point to/say shampoo while in the tub, but it actually sounds closer to poo-poo or mmmpoo
  • Two current favorite books are I Love You Through and Through and In A Dark, Dark Wood.  In the I Love You book The Hubs does a bunch of actions with him to help with vocab, and Bubby is getting really good at predicting the pages/motions.  In the Dark, Dark book there is a pop-out ghost at the end which he loves (he only cried once when I scared him with it accidentally).  When he turns the last page, he yells "A-GO!"  Somehow I lost this book today, and tonight he kept asking for it, pointing to his book tote and bookshelf saying, "Dock-dock."
  • Whenever one of his books mentions a lamb, Bubby points to his musical Beach-Boy-song-playing lamb, and says, "Baabaa."  Most kids baabaa means bottle.  My kid it means lamb.
  • He really isn't saying whole words yet, but he definitely knows words and is attempting to say them/match them up.  He will repeat most initial consonants, though a few words he does the ending sound instead of the beginning (for example "sock" he calls "ca-ca" I think because the hard c is easier than the s sound.)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Multitude Monday 282-290

Just a list for now... but with continued gratitude
282. provision for a medical payment
283. chicken and gravy in the dutch oven, mashed potatoes, and broccoli on a Sunday afternoon
284. coupons
285. not being in labor
286. both rounds of steroids in for Mac2.0's lungs
287. free Wizard of Oz hike with friends
288. learning to make/bake homemade bread
289. Sunday afternoon nap for Bubby and me
290. the comfort of sweatpants

holy experience

Saturday, October 23, 2010

prayer and provision

End of the month = bill paying time.  I find myself whining sometimes that the bills we have are not fun bills - you know the kind you hear about on t.v. - the people that are in debt because of poor choices buying cars and boats and homes and clothes and vacations they could not afford.  Yes, I have actually thought momentarily from time to time, "I wish some of our bills were for something fun - like a new car."  But I don't really want that. (well the new car I would take, but I love that we do not have car payments - thank you, Dave Ramsey plan.)  Having that kind of debt would stress me out beyond belief, so I have to remind myself of that when I feel the need to compare.  We are lucky that our bills are the basics - house payment, insurance(s) (ugh!), phone, utilties, trash, and medical.  Oh the medical. We are lucky that before I stopped working we had saved away some money - money that is coming in handy during this transition time and time of the never-ending-medical costs.

And I have been jokingly (somewhat) complaining on facebook about where we sign-up for our free medical care that the Great Obama (sorry, not a fan!) has promised us all.  But that's another thought for another post, not this one.
So today as we sat paying bills, I prayed, God, it sure would be nice to have a check in the mail for some of this medical stuff.  And this afternoon I went out to the mailbox on the way to run some errrands (including going to the post office to pay the bills) and there was a check and a letter indicating that this unexpected check was to go towards medical costs. 
God continues to provide - piece by piece - big, small, and in-between - each moment, each day, each month.
And I cry as I type this because He knew a few days ago I would pray that prayer today - and I would see the answer almost immediately.  I find this amazing.  Sometimes the answers are not so immediate - I know that as well as a lot of you blogging readers. But today it was an immediate reminder that the God of the universe is intimately involved in my life, and that I am called to continue to trust Him at all times.
"Would any of you give your hungry child a stone, if the child asked for some bread? Would you give your child a snake if the child asked for a fish? As bad as you are, you still know how to give good gifts to your children. But your heavenly Father is even more ready to give good things to people who ask." Mattew 7:9-11 (CEV)

Friday, October 22, 2010

just a few "spiritual" thoughts

I just wanted to jot these down, more for my own interest/record keeping I think than anything else.
  • I am loving the study on Paul I am a part of.  At first I wasn't so sure, but the last several weeks have been very good.  I like seeing him in new ways - a little more human (even post-conversion) and not so-holier-than-thou.  He comes across as harsh and sarcastic sometimes, especially when his passion for something is really vivid.  Oh, how I relate to this!
  • There was a discussion on spiritual gifts on the Beth Moore video on this study.  She mentioned about operating outside of the Spirit in the flesh or counterfeit.  For example giving to be noticed, leading to manipulate, serving to get brownie points, etc.  A couple of interesting ones she mentioned happened to be two of my gifts - discernment (and how outside of the Spirit that can be judgmentalness and criticism -ouch!) and mercy (excusing every kind of sin without holding people accountable and pointing out their need for forgiveness).  It gave me a lot to think about, especially how looking at this idea in terms of my other gift - exhortation - and I can think of a couple examples looking back how I let my flesh take over instead of being in step with the Spirit.  Now that I know better, by the grace of God I will do better.
  • I had a weird dream (if you can call it a dream when you aren't really in a deep sleep) the other night. Bubby had woken up and fussed a couple of mintues, and fell back asleep, but I was not able to (this is not the dream, by the way).  So for almost two hours I lie in bed, uncomfortable and having every annoying worry-thought fill  my head.  I kept trying to pray it through and unburden myself because seriously, what can I do at 4 AM to solve any problem? Anyhoo - as I was falling asleep, my dream (vision? I hate to say that because that sounds too mystical for what it was) was standing on an elevator with The Hubs.  The door was open, and we knew we either had to push a button and go somewhere or get off.  I remember saying, "What do we do?  We can't just stay here not going anywhere." Or maybe he said one of those phrases.  It sounds like a very simple dream, but it was very vivid - and it seemed like we just stood in that elevator, not getting off and not going anywhere for a long time.  And then I think I woke up. Or the dream ended.  Any interpretations out there?
  • And not so spiritual, but I think I have a book or at least a portion of a book on my heart to write.  I have always wanted to write a book, but never found the right "thing," but this time this idea (non-fiction by the way) keeps running through my head.  The idea is still in the fuzzy phase, and I have no idea what I am doing or how to do it, but I am just feeling this compelling desire (need) to get it started.  Prayer for this endeavor would be much appreciated.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

reposting and revising a portion for imperfect prose

"Life is always a rich and steady time when you are waiting for something to happen or to hatch."
-- E.B. White, Charlotte's Web

Today I stretched out (somewhat uncomfortably on a weird doctor's office recliner) and listened to my baby undisturbed for quite some time.  I had been worried about not bonding as much with this little guy as I did with Bubby in the womb, but this morning I sat back in awe of this miracle.  A miracle that reminded me of him being a miracle when he gave me a little scare Tuesday.   When Bubby was first born (and okay, still from time to time now) I just would sit and watch him sleep, watch him breathe, completely mesmorized.  Today I felt similarly mesmorized as this morning I reclined, hands above the monitor on my belly, listening to one of the most beautiful sounds ever - a baby heartbeat and him kicking and moving around inside of me.

Humans are not some cosmic mistake, accident, phenomenon.  We are created too complexly for that, in my opinion.  Something that started out as two cells is now two pounds and fourteen inches long and with a heartrate in the 150's.There is a life growing inside of me - already alive and kickin' - and he is here for a reason, and I have the distinct honor of being his mama.

joining with others with Emily and imperfect prose today


I love giveaways (though I have yet to win anything in the blog world) AND I love this blog! Looking forward to next week.

We're Bonding Now, Aren't We George?

My doctor appointment went well today.  My OB was actually on time! (gasp! that never happens).  They are not going to do the protein test at this time (the one that could show if I might go into labor in the next two weeks) because I am not dilated and my "uterus is quiet." (Their words, not mine.)  I received my first round of steroids today, so that put my mind at ease a lot. I was very concerned about getting them in on time incase we go early.  They sent me home with the other dose and said my brother could give it to me at home after 24 hours or more passes.  Awesome - that will save me a little money since my insurance sucks and doesn't cover me getting injections. (And very little else I might add...)

They did put me on the monitor for 20ish minutes today just to make sure things were okay. (That is how they determined the volume of my uterus, haha.)  I know I have heard Mac2.0's heartbeat several times, but it is usually just for a minute every other week.  Today I stretched out (somewhat uncomfortably on weird recliner) and listened to my baby undisturbed for quite some time.  I had been worried about not bonding as much with this little guy as I did with Bubby in the womb, but this morning I sat back in awe of this miracle.  Seriously - something that started out as two cells is now two pounds and fourteen inches long and with a heartrate in the 150's.  When Bubby was first born (and okay, still from time to time now) I just would sit and watch him sleep, watch him breathe, completely mesmorized.  Today I felt similarly mesmorized as this morning I reclined, hands above the monitor on my belly listening to one of the most beautiful sounds ever - a baby heartbeat and him kicking and moving around inside of me.

Humans are not some cosmic mistake, accident, phenomenon.  We are created too complexly for that, in my opinion.  There is a life growing inside of me - already alive and kickin' - and he is here for a reason, and I have the distinct honor of being his mama.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

at least I shaved my legs this morning

It has been an interesting 24 hours or so. 
Monday night while Mike was about an hour away working, I started having a word sensation in my upper abdomen... not painful, just weird.  I kept an eye on it for awhile and then texted my cousin who recently had a baby to ask, "Did you feel anything like this ever?"  She told me to call my doctor. When I told her I would if it got worse she repeated CALL YOUR DOCTOR. :)
So I did.
Because with Bubby I felt nothing - I woke up one morning to bleeding.  I didn't feel contractions until a few days later - I think the day he was born - even though I was dilated and contracting to some extent. So I have nothing to go off of for Mac2.0.  It is in some ways at like being a first time pregnant lady at this point.
So the nurse on call took my info, gave me some advice, told me it was most likely Braxton Hicks, and after a couple of hours and lots of water and as much rest as a puppy and a toddler can give a person, the sensation went away.
This morning I had my glucose test.  Fruit punch glucose test juice was not as tasty as the lemon-lime, but I survived.
This afternoon I took it easy.  Bubby dozed on my lap from 11-1 (very rare!), and I dozed off and on while The Hubs worked on paperwork.  I was feeling weird cramps in my very lower addoment off and on, and throughout the afternoon they got more intense and more frequent.  Around 2/2:30 I called my doc, and whem they took my info today they told me to go to the hospital right away because of my history and what I was describing.
I have to say I love my hospitals L&D staff.  I loved them with Bubby, and they were equally lovable today. I got in, they put me on monitors, Mac2.0's heartrate looked good, and of course, like a car you take in to a mechanic that suddenly stops making that weird noise, my pains started dissipating.  They monitored me for quite awhile.  Then they took a lab that could show if I was going to be going into labor in the next two weeks... BUT the lid didn't close on the specimen, so they couldn't get results because they were contaminated.  I may get the test done tomorrow if the doc wants me, too.  They couldn't redo the test because they had checked me to see if I was dilated (Praise God! I was not!), and apparently that would mess up the lab results, too.
So I go to the doctor for my regular appointment tomorrow. I also get my first round of steroids to help Mac2.0's lungs should he come early. (This was already in the works, not as a result of today's episode.)
I joked on the way to the hospital that at least I decided to shave my legs this morning.  There's nothing more humiliating than a hospital gown and hairy legs! :)  Next to do to prepare...remove chipped toenail polish and pack a hospital bag... just incase!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

grace in the mail and MM 268-281

After my feeling pretty good about myself on Friday, something must have happened as I slept Friday night.  Saturday I woke up feeling...not so content.  I can't even exactly put my finger on it except the best way I can describe it is feeling stuck.  Like waking up with gum in my hair emotionally - feeling stuck in this house, in this place, with these circumstances - though I couldn't quite verbalize it for half of the day.  Somehow, I was able to get myself together enough to go for a walk with my guys and the new dog, and just getting out, and talking a little bit helped, and the cloud I chose to put above my head that day started to lift because I made the decision to allow it to be lifted. Then I came home to a sweet note and nice surprise in my mailbox - and on a day when I did not deserve a random act of kindness, I received one.  Yet another reminder of grace.  And this grace will yield more grace as it is a ticket to caffeinated goodness which I have a feeling I will need sometime this week.  Thank you, friend.

holy experience

268.  beautiful weather
269. Saturday afternoon walks and Wednesday morning, too
270. a new dog, whose only accident has been because of fear of the vacuum cleaner

271. seeing old friends we haven't seen in a couple of years
272. making my little boy laugh with ridiculous antics
273. husband cleaning up puke without complaint
274. random acts of kindness and the reminder to pay it forward
275. baking that turns out
276. Bubby repeating lots of initial consonant sounds as we work on vocab skills
277. simple Sunday night joy of The Hubs and I playing with Bubby/work on physical therapy

278. watch Bubby's light bulb moment as he gains more confidence cruising around the furniture (with a little - but less than before - support) and walking (without us holding on) as he holds on to his push car
279. seeing Bubby point to words across two pages in a mimic-mama/dada type of way - joy to this former teacher's heart...emergent literacy! :)
280. laughter, as usual, Sunday mornings at 10:30ish

Friday, October 15, 2010

some thoughts on comparison

There have been some great, challenging, encouraging, and inspiring blog-posts out there lately.  A lot of them that have spoken to me have been about the comparison trap - either obviously on that topic or undertones of that theme.
Comparison is something I struggle with.  I think some of it stems from my "oldest child" personality, some from being in a self-contained gifted program much of my schooling, and some from being female/human.  (Do men struggle with this as much?  I do not know.)  I am the want-to-be-the-best-at-it-or-else-what-is-the-use-of-trying type.  By the grace of God, I am attempting to have that changed.  Notice I did not type what originally came to my mind (I am trying to change that - because I cannot change it on my own - that in itself becomes a trap for me of the same sort).
Some bloggers have written that their comparison struggle comes a lot in the blogosphere.  That isn't a huge area of struggle for me at this time (though it could be next for me) because I write on here primarily to just jot down my random thoughts and secondarily to document the journey on which my family is.
My comparison struggles tend to be I wish I could ______ like _______.  Cook, bake, sew, write, paint, take pictures, speak, run, organize, make friends as easily, be as outgoing as, have as nice of a house as, have as much money as, ... and the list could continue.  And frustration sets in as I either attempt to do things but don't do them perfectly (or even as good as the person I am comparing myself to) or don't have the means at this time to have/purchase/accomplish my wish list.
At MOPS last week we discussed comparison in mothering - how we all mother differently and that's OKAY.  Can I tell you how freeing it was to listen to hear other people mother and think to myself, "Well, that's good for them, but that would never work with my personality/my child" instead of thinking, "I wish I could _________ like _________."  And on the converse side be able to have the freedom and not think myself better than someone else? (Because I struggle with that, too!)
What a journey!  I am noticing myself more when I am apt to compare, and not that I always successful at stopping myself, but I think being aware of what I am doing is one of the first steps to overcoming this lifelong battle.
I have a feeling I will be writing on this topic again...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

corn chowder

My friend Donna gave me the chowder recipe via facebook via thepioneerwoman.  Donna added potatoes to her chowder...I would have but we had none in the house.  I halved the recipe and it was enough for two meals for The Hubs and I (with salad and bread).
It had just enough kick, but I like a little spice.  If you don't, leave out the chipotle.  (Oh, I didn't halve the bacon because I really like bacon!)

new family member

Ideally we would have waited a month or two before adopting another dog so quickly.  But Mac2.0 could be arriving anytime from the end of the month to mid-January.  And Bubby is looking for his doggie friend. And The Hubs works evenings (sometimes very late evenings with driving distances to go counsel), and it is semi-necessary for me to feel a bit protected in this neighborhood in which we live.  And we knew EbbyLou's time was coming to an end.
So we went to the Humane Society just to look and see.  We found two that met we liked - that were calm, that were not barking, that had a sweet-adopt-me-please-face.  One was only four months old, so we opted not to go with her.  We wanted about a year or two old and a female and not too big.  We found an eight month old.  She is an Aussie mix.  The Hubs yanked on her tail a few times to make sure she wouldn't snap if Bubby got a hold of her.  She didn't react.  She sniffed Bubby but was not hyper with him.  So we adopted her.  We pick her up later today after she has been fixed.
Here is the picture of her from online. 
Apparently Aussies are very smart, easily trainable, and loyal/good with families.  They like playing and having a "job" to do.  We are either naming her Penny or Lucy.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

my cup still overflows

I am finding more and more that joy is not just in the once-in-awhile-big-moments, but joy is present daily in the small and seemingly insignificant.  And these moments I am finding are actually the most significant of all because if I am not careful they slip by without notice, without fanfare.  One of the gifts of the digital age is not saving the photo ops just for holidays, birthdays, and vacations, but instead choosing to document the everyday that makes up my ordinary-but-the-cup-still-overflows-life.
unloading the groceries

wandering to Mama and Dada's room to read a book

a new recipe for yummy corn and pepper chowder

clean and folded linens
vigorous teeth brushing
the first taste of Mama's homemade chocolate chip cookies - if this isn't joy, I don't know what is

linking with Emily and imperfect prose today

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

goodbye friend

If you aren't a dog person (or pet person), I'm sure it is hard to relate.  I don't mean that as judgment...just fact.
But I am a dog person.  We had a great family dog during my teen years... Zoey.  My mom had to put her down a few years ago, and even though I was married and no longer at home, it was still a very sad time for me.
And today we put down our sweet Ebby Lou.  The Hubs and I got her from the humane society within a week or two of moving from Arizona to Missouri.  We were told she was younger than what she ended up being, so we also assumed she would be more lab (and get taller) than she ended up being.  Big body, little legs, bat ears...she was a slightly odd looking dog, but she was adorable to us.
I remember our furniture hadn't arrived yet when we adopted her, and we had to wait for her to get fixed (which she ended up already being fixed) before we could take her home from the pound, and The Hubs and I were sleeping on the floor brainstorming names for our soon-to-be-puppy.
In the early days she chewed on the corner of our bathroom cabinet.  That is not my favorite memory.
She chased squirrels and in her prime she caught a few.  This made The Hubs very proud.  Having my dog bite off a squirrel's head made me want to vomit.
Speaking of vomit...she would sit next to me during some rounds of morning sickness with my pregnancies.
After coming home after my miscarriage I remember snuggling up with her at times.  She would listen in her doggy-way as I cried.
She loved car rides, especially when it involved a trip to Andy's and a free doggie cone.
Ebby loved Bubby.  I really think she thought he was her child.  When we brought Bubby home from the hospital she was very curious, but also very gentle.  He was in pain due to the circumcision, and we had to shut the door when we changed his diaper that first day or so because Ebby sat outside and cried along with him - thinking we were doing something to hurt her baby.  On nights when Bubby cried in his crib, she would whine or even come try to get us to do our job, which apparently we were not doing up to her level of satisfaction.
In recent weeks she had allowed Bubby to "pet" her - which involved him throwing his whole body weight on her torso followed by pulling at her fur, tugging on her tail, and poking her in her eyes while babbling loudly in her ears. She didn't mind.  She just wanted to lick his face.
I met The Hubs after work at the vet.  Bubby and I had spent some quality time with Ebby during the afternoon.  I couldn't handle going in, so I said my good-bye in the parking lot.  The Hubs said it was very peaceful and painless for Ebby.  She was a wonderful family dog.  And now we are very sad because she is gone.
But I know will be finding her fur for months around the house. :)
Ebby in 2005 or 2006

the E-dog decision

We are putting EbbyLou down late this afternoon.  Her cartiledge is gone, and really all we can do for her is to continue giving her shots/pills for her condition.  She avoids using one of her back legs.  She has also for the last few weeks eaten off huge chunks of fur.  If you have seen Steel Magnolias, think of the dog Rex who was missing fur due to the stress of the wedding prep.
Anyhoo - The Hubs called today - I cried while he talked to the vet receptionist.  Ebby isn't that old, but her poor body was just not made right.
I do not know what we will do without her. She really is a great dog.

Monday, October 11, 2010

right on schedule

So the child who I believe about two weeks ago pulled himself to standing in order to disturb our radio-alarm clock has been putting up a fight not to stand this whole last week.  Last Monday for physical therapy we excused it due to rough teething.  But for a few days now, Bubby has been pretty much back to himself.  Except he will not stand - on his own or with us "encouraging" him.  I take that back - he will stand a bit if we are walking him around by putting our hands under his arms or armpits.  But to do his PT homework of cruising around furniture. Nope.  And today while the PT was here, he threw a big fit, even though she was more than patient and kind with him.  He threw such a fit that he made himself throw up.  YUCK!  (And I must have an awesome therapist because she assisted with the stinky clean-up.)  We got some work in, but not as much as we needed or would have liked.
The therapist informed me that the terrible two's actually start between 15-18 months.  Well, Bubby Boy is not going by his adjusted age for this milestone.  The calendar says he is a 16 month old, so apparently he does not want to be delayed in the attitude arena.
Luckily, he was a very sweet boy most of the rest of the day.  So much so that with our new-improved bedtime routine he was out, on his own in his crib, without tears or fussing in about ten minutes.  Thank you, Sara Groves cd.


I need to figure out how to make the photo in my header smaller for the blog.  It is too big.  Anyone know how I do this?

multitude Monday 256-267

holy experience

I have tried to write last night and earlier today, but my thoughts seem scattered, disorganized, and when I jot some down they seem obligatory instead of sincere.  I'm not a fan of insincere.
So just some photos and a list for now, which I type with only my left hand since Bubby is leaning on my right arm guzzling a cup of milk.

256. a trip to the pumpkin patch

257. warm October days  (if it can't be autumn weather give me summer heat over frigid winter any day)
258. a husband who gets our son fed and keeps him entertained so I can have some extra Monday morning sleep

259. granny smith apples
260. watching college football
261. a semi-new bedtime routine that seems to be working
262. miraculous stories of God working in the hearts of some who live in Iran
263.  clean towels
264. lessons on comparison
265. Saturday morning coffee runs
266. Tuesday night visit with a great friend while the kids played
267. looking back to this time last year and seeing continued growth


Sunday, October 10, 2010

the billy goats gruff

These goats look innocent enough, right?

Bubby was not a fan!

I think we'll just stick to dogs!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

there's still good news in the world

Every now and then I hear a cool story like this. But it is even better when you know the person involved in the story, which I do. Read it and you will be encouraged that there are still good things going on in this world.

Looking for some poetry, prose, art, and other such things to fill your Thursday and inspire you?  I once again recommend Emily's imperfect prose - where various bloggers contribute their thoughts, words, prayers, and more each week.

nicknames for Mac2.0

I am a little weary of calling Baby#2 Mac2.0. It worked when we didn't know the gender, but now it seems impersonal. Bubby has had many nicknames - Bubby is the one that stuck the most (I know I used to write Buddy on here, but I know too many people with dogs named Buddy and in print it just never looked 100% right...)
So I am taking suggestions for nicknames for Mac2.0 - for the most part to call him online since we don't use our kids' super-cool real names on here. And I know nicknames evolve over time, but having some new ones to choose from would be great. We've exhausted the B-names (which is weird since Bubby's real name starts with a C)- Bubs, Bubba, Buddy, Booboo, Bubby...
suggestions?? Mac2.0's real name starts with a G

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

slow down

It seems I am trying to harness time
just as much as I am chasing to slow you,
boy who crawls much more quickly than I ever imagined

I want to capture these moments and hold them close
like I capture you and snuggle you at naptime
instead of having you fall asleep alone in your crib

You will be independent soon enough
jumping off bunkbeds, footie-free pajamas,
calling me Mom

I will not waste these moments
of Cheerio-breath, hesitant to walk,

I will collect each day,
beautiful or trying,
and save them in a scrapbook in my heart

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

a lesson in grace

Last night I read a beautiful post over at chattingatthesky (who is doing a series on 31 Days of Grace).  I was inspired, and even commented how I wanted to be a mom like that.

However, this morning I was anything but that.

I decided both bathrooms must be cleaned...immediately.  Now for the last several weeks they have been on minimal maintenance mode - clean enough to not spread disease but not clean enough to have my grandmothers or anyone else's grandmothers over.  I was sick of seeing the soap residue, the spots on the mirror, and the dust, among other things.  So I set off to clean with my baking soda, vinegar, Windex, and Lysol wipes, and Bubby followed.  That, my friends, is from which my frustration came.  He, being a typical almost-toddler, was in all of the drawers.  That would have been fine except he wanted to try to eat the candle, attempt to take things from the "child-proof-not-so-much" cabinet, and put his hands on the toilet bowl mid-clean.  And I kept saying "No!" and begging him to give me just ten more minutes to get the job done.  And I was stupid enough to proceed to the other bathroom and live out a similar scenario.  I did not yell, but I was definitely a cranky mama to a child who was just doing what is developmentally appropriate - explore and investigate.  I was anything but grace-filled as I prioritized cleaning and to-do over relationship and relaxation.  Who was this?  I rarely prioritize cleaning over anything.  Over the last year or so I have pretty much had the philosophy that housework can wait, and what gets done gets done. (Okay, I probably had that attitude pre-mommyhood!)  But every now and then I get tunnel vision, and when that happens, anything that interferes with my to-do list irriates me. 
Once the bathrooms were clean enough (still not June Cleaver-worthy), I got Bubby dressed for the day which included zubbas on the belly and introducing him to one of the best October kids books (In A Dark, Dark Wood - which he LOVED!)  And it hit me amidst his giggles and smiles that my priorities were completely out of whack.  The bathrooms could have waited till this afternoon or tonight or tomorrow... I am a stay-at-home mom not to be a "housewife" but to be a MAMA.

My one-year old extended grace to me today when I had not given him any during my cleaning frenzy.  He readily accepted the tickles and the storytime without holding a grudge against his previously-cranky mom.  And he gave me another gift that I defintely did not earn - my non-napper fell asleep on my lap just a few minutes ago - a rare treat, a morning nap.  Grace indeed.

backup arrived

Yesterday evening I got a text from my sister-in-law (Auntie Missa) seeing if I wanted her to come over for an hour or so to give me some relief from my Monday.  She arrived  and played with Bubby while I folded the laundry I had on my bed (which she offered to do for me, but after my day a little break to fold clothes was very appealing).
As this was happening, my brother (Uncle Fman) called his wife on his way home from class, and finding out the party was at my house, stopped by, too.  An hour of other people helping entertain my child amidst having conversation with adults was just what I needed to make it through the long Monday evening while The Hubs was at work.
Uncle Fman found a very fun game to play with Bubby and his push car - somewhat pulling/somewhat being pushed around the house - several laps.  Bubby thought this was a ton of fun, AND I think all of the exercise wore him out because he conked out fairly easily for me tonight.

Thanks Auntie Missa and Uncle Fman - you are loved and appreciated!

Monday, October 4, 2010

searching for my gratitude

You know that lovely, gratitude-filled post from less than 24 hours ago... this is not a sequel.

My Monday is not going as well as my last few Mondays have gone.  My early morning grocery shopping routine was postponed till later in the morning.  While I saved almost $30 by shopping sales and coupons and buying only what was on my list (except two items I forgot to write on my list), the bill was still much larger than I think it should be for a family my size.

Bubby slept to a decent hour this morning, but he woke up cranky and with wet pajamas.  His crankiness hasn't ceased for more than a few minutes since he got up.  He is getting eight teeth in, and while he has dealt with this pretty well (the molars (?)  are really showing now and the incisors are pushing their pointy tops through), I think he has just had enough today.  And The Hubs and I get to suffer along with him.  He refused to nap until just a few minutes ago, even though his exhaustion was evident.  While I was attempting to keep up with the laundry, Bubby managed to push Ebby's water bowl across the kitchen (ignoring my "NO!"), and let me tell ya, a dog bowl can hold a whole lot of water.  I know this because I had the *joy* of sopping it up with a towel in the midst of loading the washer.

Oh, and right when The Hubs was leaving for work this afternoon, Bubby decided to have the nastiest diaper ever.  The only detail I will share is that I would have been better hosing him off instead of going through half of a wipe box!

He is finally napping now, and I am going to attempt to rest before the Physical Therapist shows up in about an hour and a half.  I am tempted to call and cancel, but my luck, as soon as I do that, Bubby will decide he doesn't need a nap, so I wouldn't be getting one anyway!

The one bright spot in all of this is that after the poop episode and the dog bowl debacle, I scooped my little boy up, got him snuggled up against me on the couch, and in a matter of just a few minutes he was breathing sweet sleepy baby breaths as his tiny hand clutched the edge of my sweatshirt.  I think God made babies/toddlers to have these sweet moments so that mamas can regain their sanity and remember that days like this are not a regular occurrence.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

date night and MM 246-255

Over the last sixteen months The Hubs and I had been on three dates.  October, January, and July - all of which were free or almost free.  Before Bubby was born we thought we would take a "babymoon" - just a long weekend somewhere nearby - but when one's child comes eleven weeks early, well, plans change and the money goes to medical bills.
Sooo, knowing that with my history Mac2.0 potentially could come anytime in the next fifteen weeks (we are praying for at least ten more weeks in the womb), we decided to have our fourth date night because it could be a very long time before we get one again.
And what did we do?  Dinner at Chili's for the promo they have going on and then walked around only browsing the bookstores and talking.  Exciting? Nope.  Wonderful?  Yes.  I love being a mom to Bubby more than pretty much anything, but that being said it was nice having uninterrupted conversation, feeding myself without having to cut up part of my meal to share, not having to cart around a diaper bag or a stroller, and not being rushed at all Saturday night.  And after a few hours away, I came back to my sweet little boy in his footie pajamas.

holy experience

246. Baby J home from the NICU and seeing his sweet little pictures online
247. a pot roast that provided dinner or part of dinner for four nights!
248. great conversation with The Hubs this weekend
249. coffee and time with grown-ups only Friday morning
250. Bubby pulling up to stand
251. a brother willing to give me a shot once a week
252. learning that our things we dealt with in the first few years of marriage were completely normal - who knew?? :)
253. sprawling out on the couch in sweatpants
254. finishing Bubby's first year book
255. knowing Monday is my most productive day of the week

Friday, October 1, 2010

a Bubby update

  • Bubby is getting very good at pulling to stand, and he doesn't get too frazzled when he puts himself/falls back into a sitting position.
  • We have a first word - besides Dada, Mama and "Dah" (dog) - "nana."  Bubs has been saying this while eating bananas this week, but today I knew for sure he was using it correctly when he pointed to the ones remaining on the counter and said, "Nana!"
  • While avoiding a nap (did I mention my child WILL NOT nap on a routine - or even nap at all???), this is what The Hubs and I caught Bubby to protest:

A Mac2.0 update

I realize with Bubby I blogged all the time about pregnancy - because that was what the blog at the time was about.  Now this blog is about everything - Bubby, Mac2.0, the journey the Hubs and I are on, my thoughts on everything from politics to parenting to poetry.  So here is an update just on this pregnancy:

  • I am 25 weeks.  Apparently I do not look that pregnant because every week I hear from someone (when they find out my due date) that I am looking very small.  I do not know how to take this, so I just smile and shrug.  Is it a compliment?  A put down?  I am eating, and I think I am about the same size I was with Bubby...
  • Speaking of eating, my current cravings are (though I have not indulged in them all): anything pumpkin (that is more seasonal than pregnancy, I think), Mexican food, chili-cheese fries, strawberry jello with pineapple in it, ice cream, Chick-fil-a, ...
  • Mac2.0 moves mostly at night - as in while I am trying to go to sleep.  He also likes to jump/stand/move all over my bladder.  
  • I get heartburn with pretty much anything - spicy, greasy or bland and healthy - it doesn't matter.
  • I switched this week to having my brother give me my weekly progesterone shot since he has medical training.  This exercise in trust saves me the forty dollars a week I was being charged (not including the prescription) to have a nurse give me them.  Did I mention having kids is expensive?  Especially for us with our highrisk status.  Totally worth it though.
  • I think I get my steroid shots in three weeks.  
  • My lower back hurts, but not as bad as it did with Bubby.