18 October 2011

How Standing at the Crib Rail is Like Standing in a Pew

When I stand at the lowered crib rail, I rest my hands on it and it is the same posture I assume at church on Sundays. I don't think this is a coincidence.

Motherhood is hard. It's so rewarding...I love Baby J so much...but this is hard. It's truly a crucible. I'm only 6.5 months into it (at least with Baby J on the outside), and I'm already astounded at the power this child has over me and the ways his presence in my life reveal hidden sins.

Crucible. noun. 1. a container of metal or refractory material employed for heating substances to high temperatures. 2. Metall. a hollow area at the bottom of a furnace in which the metal collects. 3. a severe, searching test or trial.

I spent an hour last night sitting with Baby while he cried. He wanted to nurse. He was angry-crying because he wanted something I had and wouldn't give it to him. I kept encouraging him that he could do it, that he had his paci and his lovey, that he was cozy and warm...that he was capable of soothing himself and I would stay with him while he did...but oh, it was hard.

Frequently I remind myself that it's about the 'long game:' that I ultimately want him to become a healthy, capable, self-confident, un-co-dependent adult male. This is not about me! It's about Baby! So many times I pray that any particular decision I have to make would be the right one. I don't want to be motivated by the desire to win the battle, to prove that I am right, to show that I am bigger/stronger/smarter/more powerful than this tiny human. That's bullying. I want it to be about him.

But last night...right after I had been praying about some kind of guidance, my husband and I had words (NOT an argument, just words) about the crying (oh, the crying) and my letting Baby cry it out...There's that moment, where you're at a crossroads that seems so intense and important. ("should I let him cry? what if he's really actually hungry? should I pick him up? what should I do?"), and here's came my dear husband to talk and discuss what was going on. (Nothing like 3am and interrupted sleep to help you get to the meat of a debate! Maybe they should have presidential debates at 3am while babies cry for food/love/warmth/coolness/diaper changes/whatever! THAT is an idea!) So my husband comes in and we discuss what to do...I still didn't think I should pick him up and feed him because then my hour's worth of work would all be wasted and I'd lose this battle!

Hm. That was a real sign that something deeper was at work here. Was it really about Baby or about me?

So I gave him some pain meds, because he seems to be uncomfortable with his teething these days as well. About 10 minutes after that, he calmed down and fell asleep.

Then husband and I retired to our bedroom and I leaned over my side of the bed, held my head in my hands, and prayed. I didn't want to kneel (so far down! so close to the flat, comfy floor!) and I didn't want to get in bed (so comfy, not good for praying) but I couldn't stand anymore, so I leant over the bed with my head in my hands: half-comfy, half-standing. I prayed--because I learned in that crucible something about myself:

As much as I want to be about the business of the Lord--discipling His children, caring for this home he's given me--it's still about me. I make it about me. That's idolatry. You know what else? Telling myself it's about my son, working to help him become a strong, Godly adult...that can become an idol as well. It makes me at heart no better than the Toddlers and Tiaras moms I so quickly judge.

May it not be about me, or about Baby, or about my marriage, or anything else--only, ever, always about Christ and his glory. Standing at the crib-rail-pew, this was impressed upon me. May I truly learn it.

23 September 2011

Five Minute Friday: Growing



So, I have this kid. A son. He's 6 months old, and he's just growing so fast! Every day he does something else that amazes me. He's so observant; he just looks and looks at everything, like he needs to fill up his tank.

He is getting closer and closer to crawling. Today he spent about 3 seconds on sitting up, propped on one had like a tripod. Then he fell over...but he's getting there! He'll get there so soon! (I'm a little afraid...then I'll have to baby-proof.)

Why can I be so content to let Baby take a big skill one day at a time, one tiny step at a time--and be so impatient with myself, with other adults around me? My dear husband is also a saint who is GROWING. It's ok if he makes mistakes, if he's incomplete--he's GROWING. It's ok if I fail again! I am GROWING. We who are growing have a loving heavenly Father who is delighted over each step, each tiny development we make...who cleans up after us when we fail. He forgives each and every sin we commit on our way to being glorified and perfect.

If I love Baby so much, why can't I relax and trust God to love me perfectly? Can't I just allow my growth to come as it comes, the same way I relax, enjoy Baby's growth and ability today and allow tomorrow's skills come tomorrow?


Posted as part of Gypsy Mama's Five Minute Friday.

Five Minute Friday: Older


Do you remember that scene from Perelandra (by C. S. Lewis) about aging? Ransom and The Green Lady (and maybe the Devil-guy was there too, I can't remember his name...Weston?) are talking about information and growing older. The Lady learns something about God and, after digesting it a moment, realizes the fact made her grow older and asks for a reprieve in talking. She needs time to catch up after growing.

Growing older is like that. It's not a simple line graph, but more like the tide chart. It comes with experience, with facts internalized and incorporated into what was previously known.

Tide Chart
Line Graph
I wish growing was like a simple line graph. Wouldn't that be nice? Just a simple slope, always further up and further in. But it's not. Sometimes it's a simple, easy slope; sometimes it's a plateau with no seeming progress; sometimes it's a steep slope that we can barely scale; sometimes it's a cliff that nobody can climb ("The Cliffs of Insanity!").

Growing is also like the seasons. Don't we go through times of incredible fruitfulness? Days of slow, peaceful ripening? Times of cold, seemingly dead, lack of productivity, when it's so cold your fingers and toes just seem to freeze off your body? And then--sometimes it's beautiful, dappled mornings of delicate, blossom-on-the-breeze, green-grass-on-my-bare-feet, rebirth?

STOP. (Sorry about that...my timer didn't ring very loudly...)


Photo Credits: Math Goodies, I Love Shelling.

A Gift that is More than Just a Broken Hip

Been itchin' to write for a while...but I have a 6-month old son, so I need to write in-between-times. This is one of those times: he's down for a nap.

I've been surprised to find myself in a relationship with him. The first few weeks were hard: adjusting to having another person around; having that person be the most demanding, least responsive person I'd ever known; hormones and recovery from pregnancy and a c-section; the crying--the demand for solutions with NO hints given to the question of "What do you want!?"--the inability to repair what was wrong and learning that all I really wanted was for the crying to stop, not necessarily for my baby to be soothed.

But now...it's a whole new day. (I must channel Celine here: a new day has come. You know you know the song. Sing it with me: "A new day haaaaaas...come!" Baby communicates with me. He interacts with me. He plays with me. He loves me.

He invented this game we play sometimes while nursing: he puts his hand in my mouth and I pretend to bite it. It's so fun! We do it again and again, and have added variations. Sometimes, when we're at the grocery and he's riding in the just-for-infants recliner-seat, I bite his feet and he giggles. I make monster sounds and he pulls his feet away, but I always catch his toes and he laughs, or smiles, or screeches. Music, it's music to my heart!

I can tell when he's sleepy. He rubs his eyes, ears, head. The way he lays his head in his carseat when we're driving. He might yawn. He gets easily frustrated when he's playing. He 'zones out.'

If he doesn't like something, I can tell. The first time we were in a public restroom (he was getting his diaper changed) and someone flushed a toilet, he screamed and burst into tears. Baby startles when his daddy blows his knows (blows his own nose, not Baby's nose). Now I can prepare him for loud noises.


Relating to Baby is so....elemental. Intense. Simple. He's happy, or sad, or loving, or frustrated. It's not happy mixed with nostalgia and a little sadness, stirred up with sorrow. (I've had enough of that in other arenas lately.) This is simple. "It's bedtime, Baby." And he nurses and we look into each other's eyes, his eyelids drooping more and more, and it's just love, and contentment. I lay him down, pat and rub his back so he'll relax again, and he snuggles down, content.

Wow. Thank you, God. Thank you for this blessing. At first, Baby in my life was a blessing like Jacob's broken hip: "God, I won't let you go till you bless me!" And God renames him and breaks his hip, so that he always limped from then on. But now I see more of what God is doing for me through Baby: He's making me a better servant. He's making me more sympathetic to The Least of These, more sympathetic to those in sorrow, more empathetic to other new moms.

Wow. Thank you, Lord Jesus. May it be so.

21 August 2011

Five Minute Friday: Beauty


For many years I was under the impression that true inner beauty, that of a gentle and quiet spirit, meant that I had to become un-vivacious and turn into a dull, mousy slip of a woman. However, because the Bible commends a G & QS (my abbreviation for 'gentle and quiet spirit), I began praying about how to develop a G & QS while still being myself.

I am not a slip, dull, or mousy. I am headstrong, a hoyden (one of my college professors even told me I was the definitive hoyden: 'a bold and unruly girl." I took it as a compliment), vivacious, energetic. Blunt, sometimes pushy, controlling. But not dull. Never dull.

I began asking other women about the G & QS. Mostly I asked my peers, other college-age women in the same place I was in. I started observing older women around my, trying to figure this thing out.

Still, I haven't figured it out. But in the near-decade since then, I've been through many adventures. Some were grueling and wore me down to a nub. Others were exhilarating and carried me to heights I never dreamed. All, in hindsight, were God's gracious answers to my prayers about developing the G & QS. I was learning to let go (forced to let go!) parts of my Self I held dear, parts I never thought I'd release. I was learning new lessons and new skills, traveling to deeper depths of repentance over sin and anger over injustice than I knew were possible, tireder than I thought I could be and still getting up the next day to do it again.

And God has traveled with me.

Perhaps my body is still un-remarkable, but I see my inner beauty reflected in the people around me, and I am beautiful.

Five Minute Friday: Whole

The whole enchilada. A whole new world. He's got the whole world in his hands. Whole is an adjective, a word used to delineate or narrow the meaning of a noun.

So what? Why delineate? Why narrow? Why specify? Well, because that makes the noun better. It clarifies what is being communicated. It gives more structure.

I myself hate being delineated. I don't like being limited or narrowed. I want to be free as a bird, happy as a clam, a true rolling stone. But that's not the best thing for me! My task is to be specified and focused. A focused spray of water is more powerful. A focused beam of light? More powerful than a saw. A delineated woman? More lovely than the morning.

Oh Lord, may I be wholly yours. Delineate me, limit, narrow, focus me. Make me powerful to wield your double-edged sword to make everything you've given me to be wholly yours.



Now my boy is 5 months old. In the last few weeks, he and I have developed a rapport. We had a last-minute trip to Pennsylvania to visit my grandpa, one of Baby's namesakes, and spent all kinds of time together in close physical contact. In the midst of routine-free days, his only 'routine' was to be with me.

I am amazed that he knows me and loves me. Not that I feel unlovable, but that someone who wasn't even in existance a year and a half ago, who wasn't even outside me just six months ago has grown into someone who knows "Mamma" and is comforted by her presence. He has a personality. He has emotions. What a delight!

19 June 2011

Five Minute Friday: Home

An apt topic for this weekend's writing, as I've only just returned from a vacation from Parts West, from my hometown. How can I limit it to just five minutes?

Home is where the heart is. If so, my home is with my loved ones. It's with my husband and baby.

Home is familiarity. That city, that state, that region--I spent my formative years there and they are my home as nothing else will be or can be. To be in my culture of origin--Colorado is so different from the South!--and feel at home not like an interloper is good. To smell that smell of pine trees and wind that comes (literally!) from mountaintops to valleys. (I remember Uncle Janis used to say "That's the smell of fresh air!" There's nothing like coming back from Away and smelling that smell again.

Oddly, I found my Mother-in-Law's house to be my home as well. We arrived there after two days on the road and it felt so relaxing to arrive. I felt at home. I dawdled in the shower. I washed clothes. I knew without asking where the laundry pre-treat is and that I was welcome to use it.

And now, in my own house where I've lived for 4 years, I am home. My kitchen. My bedroom. My living room. Here I am housemother, saimniece, hostess. Here is where I cook and clean and live large moments and tiny moments.

Five Minute Friday: On Forgetting

(forgive me: I've been away on vacation for three weeks.)

On Forgetting

I'm a forgetter. I've always been a forgetter. I forgot about Color Days in pre-school. I forgot homework throughout my school years. I've forgotten to pay bills. I've forgotten to deposit paychecks. I've forgotten my husband's birthday (although I had a one-month-old at the time). I forgot the time my baby was born (though I was high on morphine at the time). Like I said, I'm a forgetter.

I've had to learn to discipline myself to take notes and write lists and keep a calendar and keep on with those disciplines. I have to put effort into remembering responsibilities. Learning to lay off myself when I forget something important has been hard, but I've had to do it! Making one mistake, just one, doesn't mean I should quit trying. It's just one mistake. Keep trying! Keep working! Get better! Strive! You can do it!

You know what else I've had to learn to do? I've had to learn to trust the Lord's sovereignty. Is God not sovereign? Is he not sovereign over all things...even memory? I work hard and put strenuous effort into remembering, but if I forget something (usually an item from my grocery list), I can do without or get it later. Usually I remember just in time--and I praise my sovereign Lord for reminding me. I trust him to help me remember when I cannot.

24 May 2011

Who Am I Supposed to be to My Child in Right Now?

When he's a teen, I'll back off and his father will provide guidance, mentoring, and boundaries.

When he's eight, he'll need a cheerleader and buddy (I think).

When he's three, he'll need a safe home base for his expeditions and learning quests.

When he's two, he'll need guidance, patience, and fun. And potty training.

When he's eight months, he'll need a baby-proofer.

Right now? He's two months old. He needs food, diaper changes, sleep, tunny time. Medical care if he's sick. Baths, cleaning, diaper changes. Sleep, and help falling asleep. He needs a momma to hold, cuddle, and care for him. He needs books read to him and playtime both by himself and with others.

That's what I can be for him right now: a food source, a comfort source, a cuddled, a diaper changer, a playmate. It's pretty simple, really.

20 May 2011

Links for 2011-05-20


:: The Tulip Girl posts this quote from Bryan Chapell, and not a moment too soon. I need this kind of encouragement.

::Some of you may know that my school days are among my least fasvorite memories. Here, Ann Voskamp writes about redemption for painful memories.

::You knit me together in my mother's womb. Click.


::Smiaguel. Hahahaha.

::A shorn alpaca.


::Yumm. More in-a-jar baking.

::Families need each other. If it's true among the animals, how much more among us people?

7 Quick Takes 2011-05-11, Volume Three

::1:: Do you remember the movie The Emperor's New Groove? All it took for the wicked king to realize his humility and the dignity of each person was to be turned into a llama for a few days. The movie is so.funny. I am relating to it these days...I want my groove back, and Baby keeps interrupting my groove. Perhaps I am simply too idolatrous of My Groove and need to realign my heart to God's priorities: to serve and love others. Sigh. Sanctification is good...but it stinks.

::2:: I've gotten a lot less fussy about stains. I've got milk on my shirt all the time, whether fresh milk, slightly old milk, or slightly digested milk. If Baby spits up on me...meh, I'll wash the shirt. (He's not much of a spitter-upper, thankfully.) If Baby spits up on Husband...oh boy, get the man a clean washcloth, because YUCK.

::3:: In Baby News, do you know what his new skill is!?!? Smiling! He smiles at me at least once a day, and has smiled at his Daddy twice...both times on purpose. What a thrill. I know the emotion was in his heart but we humans are communicators, and it's nice to see the affection on Baby's face, a connection between his heart and mine. Yay. Oh, yay!

::4:: We're going on a road trip in a few weeks. Will Baby make it, strapped in his car seat for 6-8 hours a day (except for food/diaper breaks)? We shall see.

::5:: This road trip...we're headed West to Colorado and Kansas. In Colorado, the plan is to go to Vail for the Teva Mountain Games. We need to bring winter clothes for Baby because it snowed there last night. (And the temperature is to hit 90 degrees here at home today.) Winter clothes? In June?

::6:: I was asked months ago to write for a Pro-Life blog. It was founded by a man in my church, a very logical, absent-minded-professor type. I'd be the only woman writing for it. I was unmotivated to write during my pregnancy, but now I'm fomenting some thoughts for that venue. Perhaps I'l take the plunge after all.

::7:: You know those laundry bags you buy for small items and unmentionables? I bought one the other day for baby socks, because I read somewhere that they can get sucked into your washing mashine drain and clog up the works...anyway, I love it. It was 97 cents (of course I didn't buy the name brand, are you kidding?), and I love it. I'm going to buy several for my mom. (Why? Because she loses socks in her dryer. It's truly amazing. I remember being a girl, and about once every six months, we'd dump out the lawn and leaf bag [yes, the lawn and leaf bag] onto her bed and try to match some socks. Neither my sister nor I have ever lost any socks in the laundry in our own homes...it has got to be something with her dryer.) She'll be able to wash clothes and put all the socks in a sack and hopefully they'll all come out of the dryer.

17 May 2011

Tuesday, May 17: Upon Daddy's Return from the Hinterland

(How could I have missed the 15th, the Ides of May?)

What a weekend with my husband gone for the weekend. It was ok, single-momming it, but also hard work. There was no backup. I had to think of everything! As a result, for example, we got to church with the potluck food, both if us dressed (Baby a little casual but still more fancified than for a weekday), I remembered the snugli...but I forgot my Bible (!). And my friend's casserole dish (that I had washed up the night before and set out so I wouldn't forget it). But...the diaper bag was restocked, we were both clean and dressed, and we were there. So there.

Yesterday we (Baby and I) spent 6 hours in the car. We ran an errand to a department store to buy a fitted sheet to replace the old one. It was so threadbare that my toe ripped a hole in it while I was turning over. (Goodbye, wedding-gift-sheet. Six years is no mean feat.) then we loaded up to go get Daddy at the Atlanta airport but had to take the garbage to the dumpster first (which is, inefficiently enough, in the smack other direction, but it had to be done.) Baby and I went straight from there to the airport, with a stop on the way for a feed and cuddle. We made it to the airport, but Baby was crying and Mommy was frazzled. Still, we loaded Baby into the snugli and headed in for the big reunion.

We (all three of us!) loaded into the car and drove northwards; Baby fell asleep (finally) but Mommy was hungry, so we stopped for food and a feed, waking Baby up in the process. He never settled in again, but once we got home I changed his diaper and fed him and cuddled him and laid him in his little bed for leg kicking and freedom of movement... and he fell asleep. So tired was he that he put himself to sleep!

Whew. After all that, Baby and I slept in this morning. Now he is napping. Instead of being tough-as-nails mommY that makes him fall asleep on his own for his fielder nap, today I rocked him to sleep and am still holding him as he sleeps. Why? Because I want to, because we spent 6 hours in the car yesterday, because he's so peaceful after a busybusy hardworking day yesterday. We both need some down-time and together time.

Baby's starting to rouse, so I'll close this blog entry. Thank you for reading.

14 May 2011

Evening Prayer, May 14

Lord, as this child of mine is soothed by my rocking and singing...just by my presence...may I, too, rest on your chest and grow peaceful because you are there.

As Baby struggles against, and then is calmed by, the swaddling blanket I wrap around him, may the bounds you have placed around me calm me instead of frustaring me.

Dear Jesus, though I struggle and often fail to love and care for this child (an eternal soul! entrusted to me!), I know that your love and care for me are always perfect.


13 May 2011

Savoring This Little Moment

I'm tucking this moment away.

It's cooled down enough to open the windows. I can hear crickets and peeper frogs. Also, a dog is barking. And I'll hear a train whistle sooner or later.

Baby is lying on my belly. He's so tall already; he won't fit on top of me that much longer. His breathing and little stretches and little body adjustments...perfect.

Five Minute Friday: Deep Breath...

Deep Breath...

In, out, in, out. Deep breathing is calming, relaxing. It loosens those tight shoulder muscles and cramped neck muscles, the ones that are knotty from holding, feeding, cuddling, calming a baby. In, out, in, out.

Deep breath: every breath belongs to you, Jesus. You, Holy Spirit, hovered over the waters in the beginning. Father, you took dirt and made us. Jesus, you Inspired us, gave us our first breaths.

God, you gave this baby his first breaths too. I consider the bronchia and the alveoli and the Oxygen-Carbon Dioxide exchange and wonder at how fearfully and wonderfully made we are. Breathing, it comes so naturally. How can such a mysterious, life-giving activity be so easy?

Breathing brings life to each body cell. It slows the mind. It calms the heart. When I find my tension rising, my anger building, my frustration mounting, breathing (take a deep breath...in, out, in, out) regulates those responses. Deep breathing eased some of the tension and discomfort on Labor Day (the biggest, most changeful, most momentous day of my life) and does the same now.

Lord, when I'm trapped in the miry clay of my earthy, worldly self, I breathe deeply, breathe the breath you granted me, the breath you designed me to take while I myself was being fearfully and wonderfully made, knitted together in my own mother's womb...I breathe deeply and am reminded that without you and your divine inspiration, I am nothing but crumbling dust.

10 May 2011

Culture Shock

When I first dove up to Bramasole with the real estate agent, I jokingly said, "This is it."

This is it. I was oblivious to the phenomenal changes I was entering as that rusted gate opened, and I saw the sunrise tints of the house's facade, colors that have diverse a shiver of wonder every time I have looked up since then. I went to Italy for the cypress-lined lanes, the vibrancy of the piazzas, the pure Romanesque churches in the country, the cuisine, the history. I stayed for the never-ending festa of everyday life among the most hospitable people on earth. I made a home here, without really meaning to--the place took hold of me and shaped me in its image.

How did I let this happen? There are many crux marks in one's life, small ones and large. To take a decision, my friend Fulvio says, his usage much more precise than the grammatical make. To take a decision also takes you. Even though when I stepped out of that car I did not know how my life would change, I did sense something at that moment. I wanted an aperture, an opportunity to merge with something limitless. I, in the dullness of my ignorance, was willing.

And Italy has proven to be inexhaustible. To take the gift of a new and very old country--a whole other sphere of language, literature, history, architecture, art: it falls over me like a shower of gold. It is paradoxical but true that something that takes you out of yourself also restores you to yourself with greater freedom. A passionate interest also has a true-north needle that keeps you focused. The excitement of exploration sprang me from a life I knew how to live into a challenging space where I was forced--and overjoyed--to invent each day.

Imagine this quote discussing parenthood instead of life in Italy.

Mayes, Frances. Every Day in Tuscany: Seasons of an Italian Life. New York: Broadway Books, 2010. pp.7-8.

Re-entering the Blogging Realm

Here I am again.

I'd like to get back into writing and posting...

It's been a while since I've looked over my sidebar. (Yikes.) I'm going to start the cleanup by deleting it all and re-posting only blogs I actually read.

09 May 2011

In this Moment

Right now I am lying on the sofa with Baby napping on my chest. He fussed and squirmed for a while, and cried his tired cry, but didn't nap. So I broke a rule: I nursed him then let him drift off to sleep. And now, instead of helping him learn to sleep on his own, I'm just laying here on the sofa, with Baby napping on my chest.

He's grown so much in these 7 weeks (7 weeks ago you were still inside me? 7 weeks ago, at 1:51, I was getting a bolus of IV fluid in preparation for my epidural?)...he's grown so much in these 7 weeks and I know the time will soon come that he doesn't fit on my chest and will have troubles that pure cuddles won't cure. So I lay here on the sofa with Baby napping on my chest. He breathes, sighs, dreams of nursing, and I'm working at pondering all these things in my heart.

07 May 2011

Five Minute Friday: Motherhood Should Come with...

Motherhood should come with disclaimers. My first disclaimer: I've only been a mom for six weeks and five days. (See, I'm such a new mom I'm still counting the days!) I was a mom before he was born, but this is totally different.

Disclaimer number one: motherhood is harder than you think. The crying, the crying, the crying. He doesn't speak English, and I don't know what he wants! The poop. The gas. The fussing. This is hard work, and it's more about unseating my Self as my idol.

Disclaimer number two: motherhood will slow you down. It takes time to get into the car, time to get out of the car, time to load the car seat into the grocery cart, time to change the diaper, time to clean up from changing the diaper. Lest I sound like a complaint machine, the slowing down is also good. There's time for nursing: 20-30 minutes to hang out with my boy while he eats. While he eats, we cuddle. There's time to rock him to sleep and feel his little body relax. There's time to sing lullabies. Time to shush. Time to cuddle. Time to pray. Time to meditate on the words of Scripture that keep me alive...I draw it in, as he draws in his food.

Disclaimer number three: motherhood will change you. I'm changed already. My body shows off that I worked hard to build him and bring him here. My stretch marks are in the pattern of a heart: see, baby? See how I bear on my body the marks of sacrifice? My incision is there, the red scar of opening to release the boy into his adventure. See, baby? See how much I love you? My heart already has stretches and scars as he barges into my life. See, baby? See how my heart stretches to allow someone else to order my days?

Disclaimer number four: (I'm totally past five minutes now, but I'm on a roll and the baby is quiet.) Motherhood brings a mirror into your life. All the work, all the soothing, all the feeding and the leaking and the lanolin, all the crying, all the diapers...all of it teaches me about God's perfection as a parent. If not for you, baby, I'd miss out of this depth of love and the deeper knowledge of God's love for me. Oh, how he feeds me. Oh, how he cares for me. Keeps me warm, keeps me clean, keeps me soothed. Oh, how I fuss at him...but he perfectly, patiently cares for me. Oh, the depths of the riches and wisdom of God! How unsearchable his judgment, and his paths beyond tracing out.

There's the baby, waking and grunting for food. Krista out.

11 January 2011

10 on the 10th: January 2011

So it's one day late.  Mrs. B, my pre-school teacher, had it right: 'struggles with prompt completion of task.'  Oh well...I'm getting better!

1.  I don't have any formal Resolutions for this fresh new year...but I do have some goals:
A.  Continue plugging away at the calendarizing organization.  I struggle with remembering obligations, with planning ahead, with completing tasks.  I've got to stay on top of my calendar or everything falls apart!
B.  Lose all the baby weight + more by the end of this year.  Baby's coming in March (if he's late, it might even be April!), and I'll have 9-10 months to lose all this mass + more.  I have a secret goal in mind (I told my husband the number, but nobody else knows), and I'll let you know how it goes.
C.  Document more.  I have a Baby's First Year calendar that has stickers (I love stickers!  The fad in 4th or 5th grade was collecting stickers in sticker albums and that was awesome!) and I realllllllly want to stay on that.  I also want to document my own feelings, emotions, and responses to what will be a Very Momentous Year.

2.  Today is Day 2 of 2 Snow Days.  Yesterday was a nice treat to sleep in and hang around all day with my husband, but today I'm getting a little cabin feverish.  Sheesh.  Plus we're getting low on milk, so I may have to cut back on one of my pregnancy cravings: a bowl of Crispix cereal every evening.

3.  Speaking of Pregnancy Cravings, I can't say as I've had any new/unusual cravings.  (Pickles and ice cream?  Bean burritos?  Nope.)  I can report that EVERYthing tastes better (blame it on all that estrogen in my body) so I'm savoring everything.  I can still gobble down the cookies/candy/sweets, but I've really been enjoying a few things in particular:
A.  Store Brand No-Sugar-Added Apple Juice.  So. Good.  It tastes so apple-y!
B.  Crispix with milk.  In the evening.  Instead of dessert after dinner.
C.  Apples.  Fuji apples in particular.  Juicy, crisp, crunchy, tart, sweet....oh man.

4.  The nicest thing about this snow has been the way it reflects the sky.  Instead of a drab brown ground, the ground has been coated with lovely snow, which changes color all day long.  It's starting to get that bluish tinge right now: it's almost 5 and the sun is going to bed, bringing the blueness of the night winter sky with it.  Bonus:  There is still snow on the tree branches, making the sky-snow blueness echo on the tree limbs as well.

5.  My favorite thing about winter is the loveliness of the leafless trees silhoutetted against the sky.  It's particularly wonderful in the evenings, when the sky changes colors and looks like a watercolor wash.

6.  We've been busy as bees, cleaning out boxes and boxes of Stuff, making room for our new family member who already has a lot of stuff (and we haven't even gotten his crib yet!).  Anyway, I came across some memorabilia from That Time I Lived in Hawaii.  I used to buy myself postcards, date them, and write something memorable on them--something descriptive--something I wanted to remember.  I found a sheaf of Hawaii Postcards and the memories I'd written there and I'm so thankful to have documented those thoughts!  I had a Very Sanctifying Life Experience while living there and am still sorting through repercussions of the sins committed against me, the same way boxes of old memorabilia need to be sorted through and purged.  But--what a blessing to have good memories documented on those Hawaii Postcards.  Because that season, like all seasons, was a mix of sanctifyingly hard and memorably happy.

7.  Other memorably pleasant things:  when I was a child and was home sick, I got to watch daytime TV.  Some very rare times, Dad was sick too and stayed home with me.  We watched The Price is Right together.  I still think of those sick days when I watch The Price is Right.

8.  You know what else Dad and I watched together once, that season when I lived at home after I graduated from college?  We watched an entire season of The Bachelor together.  Yes, yes we did.  And we both got into it.

9.  I came across the season premiere of The Bachelor the other day and it made me wish I could live near my parents again, because I'd so totally watch this season with Dad.  He'd join me too--last week when I was still on Christmas Vacation the TV Network was promoting the crap out of it (*slap!* 'That's from every woman in America!' spoken in the voice Barbie would use if she had a voice) and we had a reminiscing moment.  Oh yes, we would totally watch this season together if we had the chance.  We'd pop popcorn and watch intently...the whole 9 yards.  Hah!

10.  Also, during my childhood, we watched Miss America every year.  Mom and Dad and Sister and Grandma and I all gathered around with pizza and Coke (or pizza and milk, if you were me) and even scorecards.  It was great.  And then that time I lived in Hawaii (I was so lonely!), Mom recorded it and we watched it 'together' by phone.  I watched the broadcast and she watched the tape and we were on the phone together for three. whole. hours.  Oh yes.  And I'm going to watch the crap out of it this Saturday, too--you can bet your bottom dollar.  Holla.