February 28, 2009

Homemaking and a recipe

I want to ask all the experienced homemakers and stay at home moms a question.

What do you do when you kind of 'lose' the spark about your job? What do you do when you know you aren't quite giving it your best, but can't seem to get motivated to go the extra mile???

I am blaming my feelings on pregnancy, but, I am feeling down about my kids' behavior. Yesterday at the appointment with the midwife, my 5 and almost 3 year old went nuts. They were all over the office, scattering potpourri, messing with displays of pill bottles etc. I was very embarrassed because no matter what I did, as soon as I started talking again, off then went. Yes it was during nap time, but still...

Plus I am just not organized yet. I still have things to organize since the move- I need to rearrange the kitchen so my baking stuff is all together, I need to get some toys put up, go through clothing, hang stuff on the wall, organize the girls' bathroom etc. Hopefully, I can get some plastic lidded tubs and get to work on all that.

But I want to share a quick dinner I did the other night. I had a roast in the fridge, but had a spur of the moment day of shopping and didn't get it in the crockpot in time. So when I got home I had to figure something out quick, without asking dh to get fast food or something.

Eggs. Very versatile. But dh isn't fond of pancakes and stuff for dinner, and I didn't have time to make a big egg casserole. So this is what I did. I got out all my little ramekins you might use for baked custard or something, plus two larger sized ones for me and dh. I chopped some sweet grape tomatoes, green onion and green bell peppers finely. I sprayed each dish with non-stick cooking spray, cracked one egg in each for the girls, two for me and three for dh. I poured a little heavy cream all around and then scattered the veggies on top. Next I added some salt and covered the tops with cheese. (cheddar for the kiddies, pepper jack for me and dh)

Slide them in the oven at 375 F and cook until whites are set. I toasted some good quality whole grain bread and made a lemon dressing for a mixed baby greens salad.

Lemon Dressing

Squeeze the juice of one lemon into a bowl, add salt and pepper, and about the same amount of olive oil as juice. Whisk on pour on top of greens.

I added red onion and parmesan cheese shavings to the salad as well. The meal was fast, pretty, healthy and yummy. We buttered and jammed the toast and drank orange juice. Oh, I put Ranch dressing on the girls' salads, but they ate 'em up. Too bad I didn't take pictures...I need to do more of that huh?

February 27, 2009

You just never know what's gonna happen

I can't believe this.

Just yesterday, I had settled it in my mind that I was having a c-section. I was fine with it and accepting the fact that for whatever reason, that is my path.

When I got home from being out all day and checked my email, there was one from a midwife I had written to earlier in the week. She has agreed to consult with me today. I knew that was going to happen!!! I really don't know what to think at all, which is why I agreed to meet with her because I want to see what kind of person she is and how it 'feels'.

This would have to be of God, because she doesn't take insurance and I just don't know how we would pay her up front the full cost. But, it doesn't hurt to check it out, huh? I pray I can find her- she's in a town 40 miles away that I'm not familiar with. Wow, I just can't believe this!

Tonight my husband and I get the treat of attending a Christian comedian event by Tim Hawkins. This fella is hilarious, and clean and I'm guaranteed to be laughing my head off. Here's a clip of him:

February 26, 2009

About Candy

I'm happy to report that by last evening I was much better. I had a good cry, had taken the full dosage of St. John's Wort, an herb that promotes relaxation, and had been reading the verses I printed out, out loud many times. My husband had a hard day, and he was sort of feeling anxious too, so I brewed us both some Sleepy Time tea, which helped.

I went shopping today, and plan to post later about what I did. I was asked to write something about Candy's disappearance from the blog world. Well, I did know her in real life, but I only met with her twice. For some reason, her 'blog' personality seems much harsher than she really is. She is very focused on family and the Lord, but she is very laid back and loves to have fun. Her and her husband are what you all visionaries. They just pick up and go, drop everything, when the time is right. They make plans, but if something changes it, they're all for it.

One thing you have to remember is that Candy had lots of psycho people stalking her, online and in her regular life. She had desired to move anyways so that she could 'vanish' from these people. Her husband is so intelligent and inventive, and they are up for anything at anytime, so this doesn't surprise me, I just wished I had emailed her before so I could know more details. (she revealed more to me since I was a personal friend)

I am a bit sad that she's offline now, because she generally always had something interesting or uplifting on her blog. She had lots of resources to other sites that were very helpful, and I never got a chance to download her cooking ebook. I imagine she had lots to research prior to their move though, because she didn't know how to do a lot of things she would need to, such as gardening, canning, more sewing, making soap etc. But, she is smart and will figure it out.

Something funny, for a long time, I greatly disliked Candy. I thought she was too blunt and uninformed on a lot of the Bible. But, I felt led to pass on my cloth diapers to her. I found out she wasn't too far away, and because they are so willing to jump in the car and go we met half way and spent the day together. So that's how I found out she's so very different in real life. Amazing. Then a year later, we drove up and stayed with them overnight and got to know them a lot more. Anyways, her and her husband are earth shakers and such a pair. I hope that at some point she does come back online...we'll see.

February 25, 2009

Panic Attacks

Wow, today has been a struggle.

Have any of you (as in my readers) experienced panic/anxiety attacks? They are very hard to describe and for someone who hasn't experienced it, they may downplay it a lot. Attacks of this kind can be very scary- my husband thought he was having a heart attack once and rode in an ambulance to the hospital. There wasn't anything major wrong with him though, it was a combination of acid reflux, which mimicked the heart thing, and a panic attack. He had never really experienced anything like that before.

I dealt with it a little when I was in 8th grade. I was watching a semi-scary movie at the movie theater and I just suddenly got very afraid, with a deep sinking feeling inside. I couldn't really describe it. The next day it was still there. And the next. And so on. I would wake up at night freaked out by 'something' and go to my mom. Finally, she told me that I was going to have to figure this out myself, because by relying on her I wasn't going to get over it. So, I left my fish tank light on at night, and if I woke up I would watch my graceful angelfish and pray till I fell asleep.

After 9-10 months, it lifted. I grew a lot in my relationship with the Lord at this point, because He got me through. I read my Bible and prayed everyday, soaking it in. At times it would get better, then I would realize I was better and start thinking about it again, and be back in the same boat for awhile. But then, I never experienced anything else like it again until one night on our honeymoon, I just got really scared for no real reason. That didn't last at all. But, after I had Alexa, my second one, I began having them in conjunction with IBS attacks. (irritable bowel syndrome) I was mostly just paranoid about having one, and then in the middle of it I would panic.

After I got that pretty much healed up, my husband started having some problems, and then I started having them again just before Sarah was born. I wasn't sleeping well and was just ready to have the baby. Afterwards I was in bad shape for awhile. I panicked about the kids catching the stomach flu and then maybe I would get it. Every time my stomach bothered me a little, or the kids woke up at night, I was so fearful that 'this was it'. I had some serious attacks too. Just about every night my stomach was upset. (duh, all the nerves!) I generally only had problems at night anyways.

So, I have battled this since then. Recently, I really seemed to have gotten over it. Used to, just talking about it or reading about someone else getting it just ruined the day. I just couldn't. I would watch TV and wonder if the characters on the shows ever got sick or worried about it. I would wonder if other people ever had stomach issues and how it affected them. I became fanatical about healthy eating etc., not take the kids to public places, be worried about taking trips etc, because 'what if we got sick?' What a fear driven life, and I'm a Christian!!

So then, I did get sick. Twice. It kind of messed me up a little thinking, what does it matter what I do? Am I doomed to always deal with this? Slowly, fear began to build up again. Then I've immersed myself in all this birth stuff, and it just really fueled the fear already building. I was still uncertain and maybe a bit worried about it last night, dreamed it, then woke up this morning with a lot of rumblings in my stomach and gas and a little diarrhea. Uh oh, I think, what's up? Am I sick again??? Of course, that starts the ball rolling.

I prayed and my husband prayed. I ate a little and took some St. John's Wort. Finally, I just couldn't bring myself to leave the house with the girls to buy the diapers I forgot and called my mom. She also went through the same things as me at the same time, and some before. I talked to her about it and she helped me a lot. I was able to feel normal again, and move on. I was able to eat too :) But, I had someone get me the diapers.

The rest of the day has been fine, because I had visitors, but then when I'm alone again with my thoughts, it can still be hard. The only way to fight thoughts is with your mouth. You just can't fight them with thoughts. Your head needs to hear what your mouth is saying to change. So typed up several scriptures and printed them off, then put them in places where I could see them easily. While preparing food I read aloud what the Bible says about fear and healing. Over time this will build faith and cause me to memorize them.

What is a panic attack? Well, it's the feelings you get from a perceived situation. Like, I wake up with the physical bad feelings, since I'm already afraid of illness, I get worried and think, I hope this isn't anything bad. Then my brain starts rolling with what if I do get sick again, what does that mean? Why? What's wrong with me? I don't feel hungry, but I don't feel sick, but I don't feel good. And so on. Eventually, I get all worked up and feel a rushing force within me full of fear- I usually have diarrhea at this point, my husband gets the chest pain- I get hot and cold and sometimes sweaty; I feel lightheaded and faint, like I can't breathe. I feel fear mostly and try to breathe through it because I know it does pass.

Crazy huh? Just by being controlled by fear, and allowing my thoughts to run loose, my body will react physically. But, if I can confess the truth with my mouth, my mind and body will listen, and if I stay focused, they will obey. It may not happen instantly, but I have had it happen that fast before. It's hard to stay calm and rational though.

So, I mainly wrote this out because I'm curious if others experience it and how they deal with it. Let me know.

Thoughts on birth

Oops, as I was approving comments I got a mean one and went to delete it and accidentally deleted them all. Sorry.

The 'mean' comment was about the dress patterns I posted- they said I was drawn to them because I have no taste. Like I care.

Last night there was show on Discovery Health about Freebirthing- unassisted birth. I had also ready umpteen vbac stories yesterday, not to mention all the births I've seen online. Guess what? The whole natural birth thing is looking very unattractive to me now. I just really don't know if I can do it or if I can, if my husband could handle the intensity of it all. What husband wants to see their wife in pain?

My ideal scenario: go into labor at home, stay there until I'm certain I'm getting further along, go to hospital, find out I'm 6-7 centimeters, get the epidural, have the baby in a few pushes :) This happened to my sister twice- well, she just rested until she was fully dialated because she had the pain meds, then pushed the babies out in like 3-4 pushes. And one was over 9lbs!

However, after my husband watched that show, he is very apprehensive about natural birth. As a consequence, fear has been trying to get hold on me. In fact this morning I was fighting off a panic attack. So, I'm done with all of that. No more reading/watching. It's certainly not helping me out.

For anyone who has not had a c-section, you may not understand as much why I hate it. I was planning to write it out step by step, but I better not since I already had some anxiety issues this morning. Maybe another time. The first one was easier in that I didn't really know what to expect and it happened fast, but it was my most painful and hardest recovery. The other ones were more nerve wracking because I knew what to expect, but the recoveries were better.

Gotta go...maybe I can embellish later.

February 24, 2009

Mixed Emotions

Yesterday was a blah day. There were a lot of things that needed to be done, but I had pretty much no motivation or energy to do them. Not only that, I felt on the verge of tears all day too. I couldn't figure that out, but then I realized I'd been doing a lot of research about c-sections and birth and I felt very frustrated to be in the middle of it all.

Why didn't I seek out other options with my second child? Why did I blindly trust the doctor? Why am I in this mess now? I don't know, but I know that whatever decision I make, it will be big. Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to achieve a vba3c (vaginal birth after 3 cesareans) because I want to be something special or to prove something. I mainly want it so I can recover better afterwards and have a better chance at breastfeeding.

Did you know there are many birth videos on youtube? Wow. I've been watching those and while it's inspiring, it's a little scary too. Could I really do that?? I have been able to find women who have had multiple c-sections that accomplished a vbac and have done it with twins! Very encouraging. I have found several studies by medical doctors that the rate of uterine rupture is still less than 1% in multiple c-section moms- compare that with a 39% chance of fetal distress issues.

What it really and truly comes down to though is my faith. Do I really believe that God can do anything? If I have faith as small as a mustard seed can I really move a mountain? God's Word says I can. Is having a natural birth as impossible sounding as crossing the Red Sea or marching around a walled city and seeing the walls come down? I believe He has healed me inside and out, as though I had never been cut.

But here's the problem. Even if my faith is strong, there still are pretty much no doctors or midwives who will take me on. So the only choices I have are to labor as long as possible at home and then go to the hospital hoping I'm far enough along that they will let me deliver, or do it at home, just me and my husband. By the way, everyone in my family and friends has been told we're having a c-section. No need to freak them out, because they will be even more worried, so this is a secret.

Anyways, I am seeking God's desire for us. I think He wants me to do what I want and will work with me whatever I choose, but this is such an opportunity to build my faith and step out, and would be an awesome testimony. So, we're at a crossroads here. Do I take the red pill, or the blue pill?? (sorry, just re-watched The Matrix)

If anyone is alarmed by this talk, please don't be. I've been studying this since my second was born. I'm well informed, and once you've done as much research as I have, you'll probably feel the same way. Life can be risky at times, but we have a Helper.

February 21, 2009

A glimpse (there are two more parts on youtube)

Just wanted to talk...

About Kenneth Copeland~

I totally understand that his teaching is rather, well, radical sounding to some. Especially to those who have never heard any type of message about releasing faith to do things Jesus did. The Bible says that we have an inward witness, the Holy Spirit. It says to 'test the spirits' and if you have peace, then all is well. If not, then you need to leave it alone.

I have literally grown up listening to his teachings. At a very young age I was able to discern the spirits- bad ones and God. I mean at a very young age, like 7-8 years old. I loved the Lord so much at a young age He seemed to have blessed me with wisdom and understanding beyond my years. I"m not puffing myself up at all, I am just trying to give you a clear picture about how I 'know' what is truth and what is not.

Awhile back Kenneth was charged with some kind of legal thing, because he is soooo blessed financially by God, that I guess he and some other ministers were being scrutinized as well. But you know what, just look at Abraham in the Bible. He was like the richest man in the world! All because he obeyed God's commands and acted in faith. And God gave him the blessing, which we can now have because of Jesus. All Kenneth did was exercise his faith on God's Word, and he was blessed too, as every Christian can be.

I just love that man, because he is fun to listen to, he is honest and open, and is very careful to only say what he receives from the Holy Spirit. He is not concerned with himself or what others think about him- he obeys the Lord regardless. Just go take a look at him- he is in his 70s and looks great! He practices what he preaches. No I don't know him personally, but after listening to him for years and years, I know he is the real deal. I urge you to listen with an open mind. You can have peace during this time of trepidation, knowing that you are on the winning side and that God is going to take care of you. You're not on the world's system of commerce- if you lovingly tithe in His kingdom, expect blessing. God has so richly blessed us lately, not just in finances but in faith and joy and peace, because we rest in Him, because we've received such awesome teachings!

My own pastor is very much like Kenneth Copeland, and even though he doesn't really listen to him, sometimes they will preach the same things around the same time. So, I know it is the Lord, because how could they be speaking the same things?? They are so attuned to the Spirit's voice and they have my trust. I am not tossed about and blown back and forth in the wind, I have a firm foundation in God's truth, and eat the meat of the Word. I ask God to show me, and He does, many times through someone else, especially when life is so wild it's hard to hear the still small voice.

Anyways, that's my defense for Mr. Copeland. I doubt he would care because he's only interested in what God thinks of him :) But for others, don't shy away from something because it's different. Allow yourself to be open and find out for yourself what the truth is. You will be pleasantly surprised :)

February 20, 2009

We are temples

Wow, I am actually drinking a cup of coffee this morning. I just suddenly decided I wanted some. It's been, oh, 3 months since I willingly drank coffee!

The past two weeks I've been listening to a series of sermons by one of my favorite ministers, Kenneth Copeland. He has a long time friend and doctor as a guest teacher on, and they are talking about being well in body, spirit and soul. Many of the things they are talking about is stuff I know, but there are a lot of things I didn't.

The best thing about the series, is that they first go to the Word of God, and see what He says about our bodies and His desire for our good health. The main scripture they talk about is 3 John 1:2, "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers."

In the Greek the word health means: to be sound, to be well, to be in good health. One thing they made clear was being well wasn't just the absence of disease, but actually getting to a place where your body is disease resistant. How many people are actually at this place today? Not a lot.

Then they talk about 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, " Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit [who is] in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's."

So really, our bodies truly are not our own to do with what we wish. Jesus paid for them not only by dying on the cross, but by receiving 39 lashes on his back for our healing.

"But He [was] wounded for our transgressions, [He was] bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace [was] upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. " Isaiah 53:5

"...who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness--by whose stripes you were healed. " 1 Peter 2:24

So, since Jesus went through all of that so I could be well, then deliberately choosing to do things to hurt my body is like a slap to His face. Many people try to use a scripture from Acts, about how all things are lawful..."All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All are things lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. " 1 Cor. 6:12

But they fail to see the rest of that scripture- not all things edify. I can choose to watch whatever TV show I want, but not all of them well edify me. I can choose what I want to eat, but not everything will bring health to me. A large well known university did a study and found that the majority of overweight and obese people were religious. Of all the religions, Christians were the fattest!!!! The Muslims were the leanest. We're supposed to be the light of the world...a non-Christian shouldn't look at me and think, 'um, no thanks...'.

This is a theory- many people in this country, instead of letting the Holy Spirit be their comforter, have turned to comfort foods. No wonder we don't have the peace and joy and strength that we should have, because our comfort comes from something other than God. And I am talking about excessive eating here, not the occasional bowl of mac-n-cheese and ice cream.

For me this was such a revelation about how important it is that we obey God's laws. It is so simple to do too! I mean really, He created our bodies to thrive off of God made foods. Whole, natural and life packed foods. Yet, the enemy has laid many traps and snares for us in the form of addictive processed foods. Before it was hard for me to find the line of separation- does God want me to work really hard on nutrition, or should I do what I can and trust Him to take care of us???

Well, I think God expects us to take great care of His temple, in the best way we can, including daily infusing it with His Word, and not allowing negative thinking and emotions to take control. In several of the broadcasts they talked about how our emotions create physical responses in our bodies that lead to disease!!! Primarily, excessive anger over long periods of time can lead to heart attacks.

So, now I have such a clear picture as to what He expects of me. First and foremost, to listen to His voice. Everyone needs different things. Second, use common sense about what a body really needs. When I was on a strict diet, my health was exceptional, because I mostly ate living foods. Raw fruit in the morning, and a large salad at lunch and dinner. In the afternoon I ate baby carrots. The rest of my food was whole and natural as well, though cooked. I didn't focus on organic because it wasn't as available. I know it was of the Lord, because I was able to do it so easily.

Another thing I didn't know was how detrimental extra fat around the belly was. Basically it just creates inflammation inside your organs and is like a smoldering fire ready to ignite into disease!!! Ouch...I do have a belly... Their goal though is not to look good in your clothes (or not in clothes, ha,ha) but to BE WELL. When that is our focus, losing weight becomes easy.

So, after being sick, I've been very inspired to work on myself and my family. I've made it a goal to eat 2-3 pieces of fresh organic fruit if I can get it, and several servings of raw and cooked veggies each day. I've been eating lots of chicken stock based soups, fish and some legumes. Now I will admit I've been eating my Valentine candy, but I didn't get to on Valentines Day, so that makes up for it doesn't it??
I drink water with lemon, take my superfood, and try to listen to what my body really wants. Another thing is really cutting down the sugar, which wasn't bad before, but little things creep in. My children are doing ok with the adjustments. I still allow graham crackers and healthy cereal, and of course fruit and yogurt and some organic juice. I have yet to get back into bread baking and yogurt making, but I'll get there. The focus is whole, natural and organic if possible, especially fruits and veggies.

I went to a different store this week and was able to buy organic baby spinach, carrots, green onions, broccoli and oranges. The apples didn't look too good so I got regular ones. I bought a new cereal from kashi that kids really like, I bought some quality chicken and shrimp, organic pasta and rice and of course the raw milk. I didn't spend much more than normal either. I've had a lot of fun this week making Thai shrimp stew with jasmine rice and Italian wedding soup. The children are not so thrilled, but they are starting to get used to it :) Tonight I am making a more normal meal- swiss smothered steak, mashed potatoes and apple brownies.

Anyways, I hope this helps you as much as it did me. If anyone is interested in watching the videos, they are about 22 minutes each, free, and easy to watch. Go to www.kcm.org, click on the 'media' tab, go to the ones with Dr. Don Colbert and click on whatever day's show you want. It opens into a new window and starts playing. I highly recommend it :) Set it up while you're folding laundry or cooking if you have to.

February 19, 2009

Baby steps on getting it together

I'm postponing the post I promised the other day (how's that for alliteration?).

Lately I've felt so...like I don't have things together. When you are used to a certain level of activity, and it suddenly shifts, it's hard to accept the newer level of activity and be satisfied. Does that make sense at all?

For instance, before this pregnancy, I was always working on something. I rarely sat and watched TV or stayed on the computer for hours. I generally had the laundry done and the kitchen cleaned, and something cooking or brewing. I got up on time and made lunches and breakfasts and had daily cleaning chores and time for crafts/sewing. I worked in the garden and canned pickles.

But then, this body couldn't quite stay with that level of activity after it started growing a new life and then got sick. So, things went down considerably. Now that I'm doing a lot better and am having more productive days than tired days, I'm feeling like I need to attain what I had before. All that to say, I don't feel well in control. I need a plan.

1. My home management binder is too big and not a real help right now. I need to change something there.
2. We're still in the unpacking stage of moving- like all the pictures are still on the floor and shelves and there are still blankets on the kids' windows. I need to reorganize my kitchen and do some decluttering/condensing of stuff again.
3. I do still have tired days when I can't seem to make myself do much.

However, if I could discipline myself a little better I could get more done. I've allowed myself to get a bit lazy. So, first I've been kind of praying off and on about what I should be doing- what is the most important. I'll list that:

~I know I a daily dose of the Word of God- I feel thirsty inside for it.
~My children need more one on one time and training. Things like showing them how to do certain chores and getting those in place for when the baby comes and I need help; pottying, and working with them on their basic preschool knowledge as well as more about God.
~My husband is not neglected at all, but I would like to do more for him.
~Nutrition is very high on the list; I've experience first hand now what happens when you aren't eating well.
~I like a tidy house, so that obviously takes some effort :)
~Gotta get up early- this seems to be something I'm going to have to get myself accustomed to for, well, I guess until my children are grown :)

I have a morning routine and one in the evening, but it's hard to do it as late as I have been. As many things that really need to be done, it would help greatly if I could do it earlier. I realize that life happens though, which is why we do routines not schedules. I just cannot be a scheduled person, and I confess, many times the evening routine don't get done :) Too tired!!!

So, I'm going to adopt the 'What about Bob' mentality- baby steps. My goal is to get up at 5:30 to get the day started, however, I will probably have to work up to that. 6:30 am is hard enough as it is :)
If I get up then, get myself dressed, quick clean the bathroom, and get things rolling in the kitchen, I can relax a bit and maybe have some tea and read my Bible. Then I'm not rushed.

Right now, I get up at 6:30, potty, go straight to my daughter's room, get her up and dressed, fix hair, go to kitchen (by now the other two are up) give Leiah a bowl of cereal and make her lunch. She's out the door at 7:10. Sometimes I get her lunch made the day before, bit it's not common.

So that's the first goal. Get an early morning thing established. Next I need to get a regular meal prep day each week and regular exercising. Baby steps...

February 18, 2009

Shopping Day

My pattern arrived! Aren't yall excited? I am going to do the longer dress in black with white polka dots- all the same fabric, even the collar, and add a bow or something. I am going to add tie backs to the sides as well...if I can find the fabric that is.

I have an important topic to post on, but I didn't have time yesterday or right now. I had the crucial school meeting for my daughter yesterday and today I have grocery shopping to do.

I have become greatly inspired to get back to rigid healthy eating, partly due to some great blogs I've found and because we now have cable and access to the food network, woo hoo! I needed it too- my brain has just frozen up on food ideas.

This week I am going to try out some ethnic dishes- a Thai one that I may have to just create until I get what I want, and an African/Moroccan recipe. I love exotic flavors and spices, especially when combined with lime, ginger and cilantro and coconut milk. Yum!

God has really blessed this because my desire is to do what will make my body well, and I've been actually CRAVING vegetables and dark greens, fresh fruit and water. Thank you Jesus! I will post my menu/recipes if time later. Gotta get!

February 16, 2009

Time in the Valley

Yall are so funny. I don't actually own those patterns I posted, however I did order the one at the bottom. Can you believe I paid $12 for it? LOL! I'm going to prove you all wrong though- I will make it work. I am going to add ties to the sides and try to do it without the collar. I wore dresses similar to these the last two months of pregnancy and I thought I looked cute. But that was me.

I did find some more modern ones for a blouse and dress that I'm sure you will like much better :)

I am going to post about something that is quite a touchy subject amongst Christians.

Does God desire for us to go through the valley, or suffer, here on the earth???

I am going to say no He doesn't. This is where many people get their backs up, because of church doctrine that they've grown up in. We do live in a fallen world, we do have an enemy that hates us and tries to ruin our lives, but God hasn't left us here without any kind of equipment to fight this off.

I believe that the heart of God is love; He is love and that His desire is for our good all the time. His desire is for us to be prosperous, healthy and powerful, walking here on the earth just as Jesus did. If we don't listen to Him and disobey, then we have the consequences of those actions to deal with. It is our responsibility how things go here.

For instance, I have been in a 'valley' so to speak the last couple of weeks. First we had a weekend where my oldest was sick all night long and dh and I were up all night too. Then that Monday, my second child came down with stomach flu, then Wed. night I had it as well as dh, ended up in the ER for dehydration and found that I had UTI, then Saturday night we both got a mild case of it again, then yesterday morning my oldest had fever and was ill with upper respiratory stuff and now my youngest has pink eye and snot.

Now I know that God doesn't bring this stuff on us. Luke 10:10 says " It is the thief who comes to steal, and to kill and to destroy. But I have come that you might have life and life more abundantly."

If God put sickness on us, why was Jesus able to heal all those afflicted with illnesses? So, why did we get sick then??

For one, I believe that confessing God's Word daily, is key to building your faith. The more you hear it, the more it becomes real inside.

" Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God."Rom. 10:17

My husband and I have been so busy with moving etc. that we haven't spent time on our relationship with the Lord. There hasn't been a lot of Bible reading, praying and speaking God's Word. So when an attack comes, which the Bible says it is coming regardless of if you're ready or not, we weren't as prepared to deal with it.

When I was really strong in my faith and in God's Word, one night I woke up feeling bad- sore throat and achy I guess- and I began to speak God's Word, some healing scriptures with my mouth. It went away and I went right back to sleep. Because I had grounded those things in me, I spoke with authority and power.
This time around, I was racking my brain trying to remember what I needed and I wasn't confident in His Word.
However I will say, at one point I was standing over the toilet about to throw up, and I really jumped on it speaking all the scripture I knew of healing and conquering the enemy and it went away. I didn't throw up. But the second time around, I felt even worse, and was tired of battling. So I stopped and allowed myself to be sick and began saying things that were contrary to His Word. So you see, it can change that quick.

Our feelings and what can see and hear is what gets us in trouble. We must look to the unseen, and remain focused on what God said no matter what. That's hard. But we can do all things through Christ.

So back to my question, no I don't think God causes us to go through hard times. I think we are the ones responsible because He has already given us the tools for success in the Bible. It's up to us to use it. God never left us when we were ailing, He was there. But we are the ones with Christ in us, we have authority over sickness and disease just like He did. God won't do for us what we can do for ourselves. It's like we're partners- we do our part and He does His part.

I hope this makes sense. I had many interruptions.
I have another thought provoking post coming up as well about our bodies. I don't have time to do it now, but will get to it later. It's really good I promise!

February 14, 2009

Patterns from the past

Am I resurrecting the early 90s?? I can't figure out why I am so drawn to these patterns.

Does it have to do with the comfort of childhood memories?

Will I look like a frump?

I still like them though....

My children won't care...they'll still be cute, but, me??

Should I dare to be different or should I suppress this urge? Should I go ahead and curl my bangs into a big puff and hairspray it solid??

February 13, 2009

Catching up day

Yay for eating real food!

I ate a real dinner last night and breakfast this morning. Feels great :) And I got caught up on the lost sleep- thank the Lord for phenergan when you need it.

I'm feeling pretty much back to normal today, which is good because I have some catching up to do. We tidied the house last night so it's not too bad, but I have some extra laundry to do, including my bedding, which is a chore since it's the huge king size bed.

But first, I am taking a shower. I was too weak for it last night.

Then finish dishes and start laundry

Tidy up around the house

Re-plan our menu

clean out the fridge- my least favorite task

go to the store to finish my shopping

start some chicken broth from the rotisserie chicken dh picked up for dinner yesterday.

I think that's it. I pray I can at least get the first three done and make it to the store.

On a good note, yesterday after 5 minutes of prodding, the ER nurse was able to pick up baby's heartbeat with the little machine and my uterus has grown enough to be able to measure it. The heart rate was 170 beats per minute!! I've never had one so high before, but then again it's still tiny.

I'm still not sure what to do about finding out the gender. Part of me wants to find out and be prepared, and use its name so the girls get used to it. But then, I kind of want to be different too. Decisions, decisions.

February 12, 2009

Turn of events

What an eventful 24 hrs.

Last night my stomach wasn't feeling well.

I went to bed at 8:30 and slept a bit, then woke up to, oh joy, throw up. Great, not again!

I spent the night vomiting, writhing in major abdominal pain and finally, decided I should call our local hotline where I can talk to a nurse. (Oh yeah, dh was sick too, just not as bad)

She told me to go to the ER. So, hubby isn't well enough to take me, I can't drive myself, so I have to call and wake up my parents 30 minutes away. They come and my dad hits the couch while my mom drives me to the ER.

Tangent for a minute: where I live, the nearest city is about 30 minutes away. Typically I would go there for medical needs, but I just didn't feel I could make it that long in the car. I live in a cluster of small towns and one nearby has a hospital. I had heard bad things about it, but I felt it would be ok especially since I might be the only one there.

So we arrived around 5 am and they were awesome. Turns out I was dehydrated (that was fast! I only threw up for about 4 hours) and had a UTI. So I get an IV, they check the baby out and give me meds to stop any nausea/gas pains.

Such drama. My husband is still feeling unsettled, but I honestly don't have a lot of sympathy for him, lol. He's mostly upset he didn't get any sleep, but neither did I and I was upchucking! I didn't think we would catch this thing because we had on Christmas. Apparently the whole area is being attacked by the flu and some of the school have had to be closed down.

Oddly enough I never once felt nauseous- just like I had a stomach ache, a heaviness. Now I'm dealing with the achy bones flu part, wahh. I have yet to eat and dh is at the store filling some prescriptions for me and buying gatorade. Good grief! Now I gotta call my doctor and try to get in earlierbecause that's what the ER doc told me to do. Does your immune system go down when pregnant?? I have never ever been sick like this twice in two months.

My idea- a conspiracy- somebody is performing germ warfare or something. When I was a kid, no adults caught stomach viruses, only kids. Now everyone gets it. Either they mutated and got stronger or someone is creating more powerful ones.

Well, I'm gonna try some yogurt now. Will play with the blog later....

February 11, 2009

Blog Changes

I just wanted to warn everyone that I'm seriously thinking of changing up this blog a lot. Not just in how it looks but the focus of it. Since I didn't start out with a particular theme or goal for my blog, it doesn't really have point does it?

Of course I realize that the name, Abundance of the Heart, is really what it's about- what overflows from my heart is on the blog. However, I would like to fine tune it a bit, instead of keeping a running commentary on my daily life. How boring!

Hopefully I will be able to figure out how to get a more interesting background going and organize the info better. I would rather be more of an encouragement and a resource than just gabbing about the goings on of my life. I realize that's what draws many of you, and of course a heavy dose of reality will be all throughout the blog as well. Still, I want a focus.

So I will be playing around with it for the next few days, er, maybe weeks!

I do have some ideas for posts though, so I'll be working on those as well.

February 10, 2009

To find out or not????

Real quick here. I'm in sort of a dilemma. With my other three children, we always found out the gender of the baby at the 20+ week ultrasound. I always felt the need to be prepared.

However, my husband and I have discussed the possibility of waiting till birth on this one. I love the idea of my husband running out shouting 'It's a boy!!!' if we do have a baby boy this time. I love the idea of how surprising it will be.

But, oh the pressure!! Everyone is just dying to know if it's a boy or not and every time I go anywhere I get the questions- Are you gonna find out? When will you find out the sex? You know we'll give you an awesome shower if it's a boy. ' What about if it's a girl? She needs stuff too :)

So, my blogger friends, what should I do???? I'm beginning to falter. My next ultrasound is in the middle of March, so not a lot of time left to decide, plus the possibility that we may accidentally see the gender anyways. (We've become very good at spotting a girl)


I had some sick kiddies over the weekend and yesterday, and it was the kind of sick that generates lots of laundry, which I was already very behind on, so, that's what I was doing yesterday.

I did get about 2/3 of it done though, I've got a load going now, and two more to go. Maybe I'll get it all done!!! While I was in the middle of it I went through the girls' clothes and tossed what was old or what I didn't like. Hopefully it will help somewhat on the amount of clothes that need care.

It would be so much easier to convert them all to dresses and bloomers/stretch pants. One piece! But then I would have to hang all those up in the closet, and I tend to procrastinate about that...I am anxious to begin some sewing though, so hopefully I will get that going and have something interesting to post about.

God has really been speaking to me about, well, myself. I just haven't felt like I've been really giving it my all where the children are concerned. With the pregnancy stuff to deal with, I just had a lack of fortitude to really work with my children. They've have shown me some very bad things have come of it. My oldest has gotten sneaky and deceitful and my youngest is just outright defiant and has taken to screaming when she doesn't get her way. My children?? Acting like this to me?? Ouch...

So I had already ordered a book called Setting Limits for the Strong Willed child, because frankly, I just do not know what to do with my 5 year old. My brain just can't comprehend why she does what she does. Why does she continue to sneak around and get into my jewelry or makeup or whatever when she has had some serious consequences for it? Why does she dare talk back to her father and I? Well, this book has answered a lot of those questions.

Then I happened onto one of the blogs I read, The Stay at Home Missionary over there on the left had sidebar. She had a series up about how we use our time with our children. It made me realize that I've just gotten plain lazy about mothering and have a bad attitude. I want to do what I want and not deal with their botherings...yes that is extreme, but at times it's how I've felt.

I have also had some major things going on with my oldest daughter, Leiah, whom most of you know has some special needs. She is currently going to like a special ed preschool and has been since she was three. Her main developmental needs right now is her lack of speech and delayed pottying. In August I tried to get her into regular kindergarten with her own personal aid, but the school kind of ganged up on me and I didn't know that I could keep pressing on that issue. The past few weeks there have been some serious problems with her class and I had a big meeting with the school people.
Picture this: I'm in the principle's office, he's sitting across from me behind his big desk, and am surrounded by teachers, the supervisor and director over the special ed program, the lady that coordinates all of Leiah's ARD meetings and then and my sister. (She is also a director over special ed in another school district and is the one who has informed me of my rights as a parent)
I feel like I'm facing a pack of wolves basically, because they don't want to do what I want. We do battle now and several times when I got backed into a corner, I just felt like 'forget it- I'll just homeschool!'. But, I just don't think I can.

Anyways, we aren't able to come to an agreement, so we have to meet again next week. If we still can't agree then we have to bring in legal people. Ridiculous huh?

So, I've been really pondering what to do here. Since I am human and my children are as well, and have some not so nice behaviors to begin with, and they're all still small, how can I homeschool? I know my limitations, and there are many at this point. Yet I do want my children to have strong relationships with each other and I want them to love what I love. The public school likes to make you think that you don't know enough to educate your child. With Leiah, I know she needs speech therapy and the other therapies help her too. But I kind of feel sad that soon I'll have two children in school, and much less time to be with them. Yet, I will have a newborn right at the beginning of school next year, so how would that work??

I'm still thinking over all of this and am trying to listen to the Holy Spirit. If this is what He wants me to do, then I know I need to do it. If I'm just trying to be like someone else, then it won't work.

Well, I need to get up and do some stuff :)

February 6, 2009

The New Old House Pictures

I did take pictures on Wednesday, but yesterday was busy and I was gone from home and didn't have much time to upload.

While I am thankful to be moved finally, I still have to get everything organized and placed right. So, I'm sure things will change around. Anyways....

This is the first room you see when you walk in the door. We used it as the main living room before, but I decided it would be better used as a play room/computer office thing since I'm in the kitchen a lot and need to be able to see the girls. So far they play really well in there, and all the toy mess stays in there and not in their rooms or the other rooms of the house. Of course then you have to be prepared for it to look awful most of the time :) We had just cleaned it up before I took the pictures, and they had already scattered some stuff by the time I got the camera!

Here's the other side of the room, to your right.

If you turn left you'll see the kitchen straight across. The divider of the two rooms is a wooden banister thing.

A closer look in the kitchen part. One downer about the huge white sink- I can pile more dishes in there than my dishwasher can hold!

That's my sourdough starter in that jar, but it must have died because I could never revive it :(

Here is our living room- no toys allowed :)

Go down the hallway, and the first door to the left is my oldest two girls' room. It's not too pretty right now until we get shades/blinds for the windows. I want to get good ones, so we have to price them etc.

The next room is Sarah's...again, nothing much as of yet.

In the lower right corner you can see the edge of our baby cradle. We just set it on the floor and Sarah decided she must sleep in it, so she has :) Daddy finally moved it last night so she's back in her bed again. So funny- she's having a hard time letting go of babyhood- still wants the pacifier and diapers, but she's cooperating better with the potty now.

And here's our room. It is quiet ugly, but as soon as we work out a budget I'm going to start planning out what to do with it. I haven't had a pretty room in about 5 years, so this time, ours gets first priority :)

Next we head back to the living room and on the right side is the laundry room. Everyone is so impressed with it because it's so big. Compared to my laundry 'closet' at the other house, yes, it's huge!!

This picture only shows half of it, but I couldn't get a better angle. Our dog's huge kennel is to the left, and there's a storage room where that door is, which is a good size and is actually organized, I just didn't feel like showing it :)

So that's that. We've been here almost a month already! Time does fly...

February 4, 2009

I exercised...and it hurts

Ouch!!! I'm stiff and sore!!!

I did my pregnancy workout the first time yesterday. I purposely didn't push myself as hard as I could because I know all too well that you will pay the next day. And then exercising will not be attractive for a whole week. I did feel good though, afterwards, just tired. Probably within a month of consistently doing it I will be able to do the whole thing without getting really tired. Then maybe I can move on to something tougher.

I'm planning on doing a picture post soon of my house, now that I'm finally done moving stuff over. I'm not done unpacking though, but I guess since I'm so 'real' I can show you the reality of what it is right now :) I have been feeling rather guilty for not keeping things up like I used to. I used to make breakfast for my dh every morning and lately, I just, um, don't. By the time I get Leiah dressed, fed and her lunch made I just run out of juice.

I need to make some things ahead so that it's there for him, but I don't know what to make. He prefers to eat eggs everyday, and you can't really precook a whole bunch of eggs and just rewarm them...I don't want him eating fast food every morning though.

Soooo, we'll see how the day goes. Maybe I'll do some pictures. Don't hold your breath though!!

February 3, 2009

What's a blog?

I'm trying to figure out, why do we blog? What is it for? When I first started out, I really wanted to follow someone else's format and be in the 'group'. I was new and had lots of interesting things to share about myself.

Now that it has been almost two years since I started, I'm wondering what I'm doing. Do you all really get that interested in my daily life? What do I say on here that's all that encouraging or even worth reading?? I say this in a laughing tone by the way. I'm not feeling down or anything like that, just thinking.

What is my blog about? Well, I guess it's just about me. I didn't have any real 'theme' I was going for or any specific purpose to creating the blog. I have a little bit of everything on here, which is why it's so me, because that's the way I am in real life. I've done a little bit of everything and I'm interested in lots of things. Right now I'm mostly talk and not a lot of action. But I am planning to act soon!

**********Edited here, adding more to my post*******************

I will say what I like about other people's blogs. I really do enjoy getting to see other people's lives. I am slightly nosey and I like 'seeing' other people's real homes, what they cook, what they wear, what kind of soap they use, their decor etc. I don't know exactly why, but I just do. I guess because of my isolated-ness, you know, no one around here is a friendly stay at home mom of little ones, I get to connect with others in my same boat. Maybe that's why, even if all someone talks about is their crazy day, I find that I am genuinely interested in if they took a shower or not that day, or managed to get the dishes done etc.

I will say, that if you enjoy my random bits of life talked about on my blog, then that means you actually like ME! And we would have a great time together in real life, because I am what I am, what you see is me.
Glad I got the revelation. Thanks Kristi :)

I haven't forgotten about my Faith and Words series. The book has been found again, so I can write some more on that. I still haven't forgotten my frugal meals on the sidebar or my make it yourself label. I just haven't been doing much frugal-ness as of late. And, blessedly, I don't really have to so much anymore. But it's good to know how to make do with household items just in case. As our lives change, our primary focus changes as well.

Before, I was so centered on my home and how spotless it should be, how perfectly healthy our food should be etc. Now, well, a normal messy house doesn't irk me as much. A really messy one does. Not doing the dishes at night is no big deal, whereas before I couldn't stand it! Piled up laundry is just a fact of life...healthy eating is whole grain cereal for breakfast and homemade meals for dinner. I still have cultures I work with, except sourdough starter. I don't know if it's still alive or not. I still soak our oatmeal and beans, when I remember :)

However, we got our deposit back from a landlady, so we plan to use that money to buy up supplements from Dr. Schulze and possibly some grassfed beef/lamb, since it's so high in iron, which I will need. And I am going to start buying raw milk again and hopefully can find a local source for eggs and chicken. So, it's in progress.

As far as homemaking goes, I just haven't been all that inspired about what I do lately. I enjoy taking care of my family, but I haven't been finding great delight in it, simply because of the moving and my body. I need to find some uplifting material to renew my zeal :)

And of course I didn't remember to take pictures yesterday of my cleaning/organizing, but I got a lot done. And just in time too, because a long time friend of my husband's randomly dropped by-- and we hadn't seen him in three years. I didn't even cook, but had leftovers from a special meal I made last Friday and reheated them. I had just enough and he really enjoyed it, phew.

Speaking of which, he introduced us to this comedian, and since we have no other entertainment to watch, we sit on youtube sometimes and laugh at people like this:

February 2, 2009

Just stuff

Praise the Lord!!!

We are finally done with moving. My house is turned upside down right now, but at least it will be the last time I have to organize it. All is left at the other place is a nasty fridge to clean out and the swing set.

Moving I think, is so overwhelming. And those are my nice words. I have now moved three times in 1.5 years...I am so done with moving. Now watch my husband get a call to Michigan next month :) Maybe by then we will get organized about it...instead of haphazardly throwing stuff in boxes and driving them over, LOL.

Ok, I've been doing some research, and after I get the house back together I will be starting my healthy eating/exercising regime. I need to eat nutrient dense foods that aren't terribly high in calories :) I mean, of course I need to eat eggs and protein and stuff, but fruits and veggies are highest in vitamins and minerals, so I should focus on that, with fat and protein and good carbs to help sate my tummy :)

Ok, to answer a few questions.

1. My hair. It is naturally curly. Oddly enough when I'm pregnant, it goes straighter. If I wash my hair in the morning and blowdry it, it doesn't curl well. So this is what I do, I wash it and condition it at night, spray some volumizing spray and scrunch it with curling mousse and uh, go to bed :) When I wake up it's curly and pouffy and dry. Then I tease it a little in the back to even it all out, and start using my clippies to get it out of my face. I need to take a new picture of it because it's growing. So much that I can use a large claw clip to pull the back of it up. I wash my hair twice a week, and I have gotten perms before when my hair was in the preggo stage, which helped if you can deal with the super tight curls.

2. My taste in music. I used to be a contempory Christian music listener only. The rock and roll stuff, was, well evil wasn't it?? Then one day , when I was in 8th grade, my youth leader played Jesus Freak by DC Talk. Talk about a pardigm shift!! I discovered a deep need for the loud and raw and power of distortion guitar and drums. As time went on I discovered that I really loved the heavy stuff, and when I would find the band that combined that sound with amazing lyrics, well... When my husband and I were just in 'friend' mode, he was in a heavy rock band. The whole house shook with the power of the amps and subwoofers!!! Oh but I loved it and they were really good. They actually recorded a cd and played in clubs, even though it was Christian music. I miss those days...

Anyways, while I prefer the tough and loud, I do also love worship music, so I mix in Third Day and Delirious and whatever else I hear that catches my fancy. To me, sometimes there just has to be passion in music, especially when it's about God. There's so much more you can express with music than with words. Every once in awhile I'll tune into the contempory Christian radio, and generally after one song that's enough and it just starts ticking me off, so on to the CDs we go :) I'm sure it looks very odd to see a young woman with all little girls and the rock blaring, but that's just us.

I'm so glad to have made it to the three month mark now, I can breathe a little easier. Having a miscarriage makes one a little more wary of things in successive pregnancies. But then that means only 6 months left!

Ok, must go begin laundry and attack the house. Maybe I'll take some pics.