my foggy residence

9.19.2013

It’s just one of those days-- A day where you have really good intentions to get a lot done.  I have a list in my mind.  I sit down and start to tackle the list and suddenly I look down at the clock, see that so much time has passed already, and seemingly have nothing positive to show of it. I have done that a lot lately.  I have good intentions, I do.   Strong intentions that unfortunately begin a rough cycle.  An attempt to multi-task, cries and pleas from children, yelling, frustration, then a little onset of guilt…and then we go back to the start. “If you do not pass go, you do not collect $200.”  It’s been three hours and I am a millionaire.

---------------

I wrote that paragraph two days ago. Not only is it evidence of the latter subject, but also a good indication that I've acutely had a writer’s block.  I've held a need to write out my thoughts, but fail to really get much down without coming to a ditch in the road. I've tried to come to terms of why I repeatedly encounter that said cycle.  Why I am left with nothing to show. Even on my thrice weekly runs, I've consciously tried to hash out what it is that has led me to this rut I currently sit in. I've set my intention at the beginning of several yoga classes to find clarity in all the mess, but just find it foggy. So I am going to sit here until it all is out.  Until I am out. I've stayed here long enough. 

A lot has happened lately.  All that comes to mind when finding reason to my rut is change.  We've been blessed with Ellie and have had visitors stay with us.  What was once a great routine is no longer functional, and we've had to find one that now fits.  New bedtime routines, meal preps, and sleep schedules.  As parents, we aren't the only ones that change has affected.  Jonah has had to grow accustom to a new sister and new agenda.  He has started Pre-school (today actually was his first official day. So as I type this, change is inevitable) I've started back into my gym and yoga routine, so expectations of myself run high. Orders are coming in for cakes in the next couple of months.  My calendar is full as I think ahead to doctor appointments, school trips, and family vacations. The list is long.  And re-reading it, I undoubtedly feel that I've met my change quota.  

Yes, change is a good thing.  It allows us to re-prioritize.  It allows growth. But when it leads me down into a foggy pit of self-doubt, confusion, and at times- surrender, I think I've had my limit.  I guess if one faces so much, it inevitably becomes all mustered and foggy.   There’s that ditch I've been residing in.  

So I've figured out the culprit and have seen my recent ‘not-so-cozy’ residence.  I wont dismiss the possibility of my list growing further.  A little more fog may settle in before hand, but I am packing and on my way out. Even if I have no idea of how to move forward, I know I will.  Just tackling the muster of thoughts has parted some of the fog and has led to a bit of clarity. 

Who knows? Maybe clarity, order and clear skies live a few blocks over. 



July 2013

8.04.2013

The month of July was packed with lots of household projects, getting ready for baby Ellie. Our fourth of July was spent at home, just fixing some things around the house and spending time together as a family.  These photos were taken a few days before we took the training wheels off. Jonah has since then learned how to ride (at the age of 3 1/2 years, mind you!) without training wheels.  He has gotten significantly good at it, using his breaks, learning turns, and a fearless mindset for speed.  He has since then graduated to a new enhanced 'specialized' bike.  (Like father, like son!) We are hoping to get him into BMX biking within the next couple of years--we think he will do really well at the rate our little guy is going!




Here's a fun comparison over the years--each photo taken on July 4th.




Here's a short clip of his first moments on the bike (sans training wheels).  We are so proud of him!

video





Right now..

8.03.2013

Right now, my beautiful baby girl is napping in her boppy pillow just a few feet away from me.  My son is happily playing upstairs in his playroom, as I can hear his ‘play/pretend’ voice chatting away with the rocket ship and spacemen.  And now, I am sitting back down to type, because I was called to come and kiss his owey on his head from an abrupt, yet quick, disruption fall. He’s happily launching his rocket ship, so any worry has subsided.  I am smiling.  I feel complete.  And among all the fear that has crept into my mind this past week, I know that I have been given a blessing that I can handle. Two. Two beautiful babies to watch grow.  Two personalities. Two lives. Two children that I get to see evolve into something great. 

So many fears fogged my mind this week.  We of course have endured a fast refresher course of having a newborn. It’s been slightly easier this time around, as the anxiety of ‘the un-known’ isn't there, and only a few minor hiccups have risen.  Discovering and embracing the differences and similarities between my two children is just one contributing aspect to feeling complete. 

Jonah has adjusted well with his little sister around.  He loves holding her and is quite protective.  His sensitive nature worries when she cries, as he noticeably cares and nurtures in his own way.  He isn't as much jealous, as I believe him to be worried.  Thus resulting in a refusal to listen, and increase in energy. I feel he worries that our attention isn't as focused as it once was, which is expected and true.  I cannot dismiss the frustration I've felt, but know as time resides a calmer normalcy will fall into place, just as it should be.

I remember always ‘feeling’ and verbally stating that God would give me boys and that I wouldn't ever have a daughter. Part of me now thinks that I ‘felt’ that with an undermining fear—fear to raise a girl that might be like me, might have the characteristics of me that I don’t particularly like, might face this world with similar struggles I have faced, and I don’t know if I would want or like that.  I may not.  But I know God doesn't give us anything we cannot handle—as children or adults. 

In the morning hours I find myself just staring at her, first in awe of the gift God has given me, and second in prayer that she may be strong in this harsh world, knowing that struggles will come, and she may face hardship that I cannot protect her from.  The fears of raising a daughter may still linger, but becoming a mom to Ellie has shown me that God can handle what we cannot.  God has given me what He knows I can endure with His help-- this gift to nurture, love, protect, and mother my beautiful baby girl. 



As stated, there are a lot of emotions right now, but one standing out is complete. A complete understanding that a household normalcy will reside soon.  A complete acknowledgement that my plans for the future aren't always those of His. And lastly, I accept completely that God will protect my sweet baby girl and the future He holds for her. 



Ellie's birth story

Ellie Grace Hancock
July 21, 2013
5:35am
7.9 oz, 18.5 inches long

Let me start off by saying that Ellie’s birth story, in my mind, mimicked those seen in movies.  The frantic rush to the hospital, the experience of my water breaking, the fear that we weren't going to make it—it was all there, and looking back, it was perfect J Having been induced with Jonah, I didn't have the experience of laboring and having my water break on its own.  Knowing that this was my last pregnancy, I wanted to experience it all (well..not all..I did want an epidural and thankfully received one.  Barely, I might add, but no complaints on this end).

As my due date approached, like any pregnant woman, it got significantly uncomfortable.  On the night of the 20th, Patrick and I decided to watch a movie in bed to ease any levels of un-comfort on my end.  I recognized that baby Ellie was moving differently, and actually stated to Patrick that, “something weird” was going on in there.  I fell asleep shortly after midnight and woke up to a contraction around 1:45am. I had a couple contractions 8 minutes apart, but really didn't think much of it, as I had experienced some false labor a few weeks back that started out similar.   Within minutes the contractions became 4 minutes apart.  I told Patrick I thought we needed to go to the hospital.  I called our neighbor to come and stay with Jonah and by the time we were in the car, the contractions became much stronger and 2 minutes apart.  Looking back on the car ride to the hospital, I laugh.  Patrick and I both experienced fear, excitement, a bit of laughter, and pain all in one.  I remember mentioning to Patrick that I thought my water was going to break in his car.  His foot hit the pedal so hard, we found ourselves going 65 mph down Meridian. (speed limit I believe is 40 mph).

When I got to the hospital, Patrick wheeled me into the emergency entrance and I was taken to a triage room where they checked my cervix and vitals.  That prior Monday, the doctor had indicated I was 3cm dilated and 75% effaced. Considering the stats, I figured I had progressed a little since then.  The nurse told us I was at a good 6cm and that we were going to have a baby! It was really happening! She wheeled me down to the delivery room.  I remember throwing up a few times, nurses asking if I had wanted an epidural and an overall rush to get me to where I needed to be to deliver.  I don’t believe I would have had the opportunity to receive an epidural had the anesthesiologist not been in the next room at the time of my room transfer. Within 10 minutes after I received my epidural, my water broke and I was completely dilated.

I have to state that the faculty and facility itself at Good Samaritan are amazing. Both of the times I have delivered there have been wonderful.  Reminiscing and reviewing all the little details here and there about Ellie’s birth, there are a few comical moments to mention about the staff that helped me deliver. There may have been an overly sweaty (now I mean OVERLY..overly being ‘drenched in her scrubs, dripping on my gown’ )  nurse helping me who couldn't quite figure out her bearings.  Whether it be hooking up the IV machine, inputting correct stats into the computer, or her ability to make some decent coffee for sleep deprived fathers, it all makes for a few good laughs.  The unstated but laughable non-communication between her and the anesthesiologist, and post-delivery nurses all made our experience that much more ‘story-worthy’. 

Once complete, I labored for about an hour, letting her progress naturally down into the birth canal.  I started pushing at 5am, after around 6 pushes, she arrived at 5:35am. Ellie Grace Hancock was born at 7.9 ounces, 18.5 inches long.  From the time we left our home to the time she was born, it was less than 3.5 hours.  Ellie’s birth was such a different experience than Jonah’s, but both equally rewarding.  She is such a blessing to our family, and makes our family complete in so many ways.

video


Our family
Jonah meeting his sister
Jonah sharing his blanket with Ellie
sweet sibling kisses
all ready to go home!



our baby girl's shower

5.13.2013

This past Saturday my dear friend, Stephanie, hosted a baby shower for our sweet baby girl. The shower setting was beautifully perfect.  It was equipped with my favorites--stargazer lillies, fresh fruit, an abundance of delicious oreos (the top contender in the line up of cravings I've had) , and a common theme (pulled from the vision of her room) of soft coral and mint green colors.  


Friends and family gathered outside on this gorgeous day to help celebrate with me.  One of the activities held was to write down wishes for the baby.  Among many tears of joy and happiness, they were all read out loud--a very special memory I will always cherish. 

We laughed, took photos, played 'baby bingo' and opened gifts.  By the looks of things, her wardrobe is getting to be bigger than mine!  Did I mention there was yummy cake, too?! I thoroughly, and clearly enjoyed it!

This day is one for the books.  Being surrounded by such love and support made me even more excited for the upcoming arrival of our baby girl. My hope for her is that she will have a similar foundation of friends and family that love and support her in her life's endeavors.  




An un-tampered faith

4.16.2013


Yesterday, I read a really good article on how becoming a mother gives us way to review or discover our own faith composition.   I quote her in saying, ‘when babies start growing up, you begin thinking about everything you believe—how it matters, how it transfers, how the responsibility of passing things on suddenly bears weight.’  There have been several times where I find myself feeling guilty, knowing I probably haven’t yet set a good foundation needed for Jonah to learn about God. Yes, I've bought books, we pray every night, and I try to constantly remind him how much Jesus loves him.  I worry I have let my own frustrations about church and my own doubts get in the way of allowing him the opportunities to discover who Jesus is-- where the trees come from, hear the stories, sing songs,  and recite bible verses that I reviewed so many times while growing up in various church activities, camps, and Sunday school.  

I am drawn to reminisce in the memories of my own childhood, and review a pride I have let slip.  I remember accepting Jesus as my Savior at the age of three and memorizing bible verses for AWANA , singing on Sundays, and attending camps.  In later years, my weekends consisted of church activities, small groups, and daily devotions.  I had an overwhelming support system of mentors and friends who gave way to my personal growth with Christ, and what I believe helped keep me out of trouble for at least a few years of my adolescence.  I give much credit to my mother in the earlier years, who despite any financial or economic circumstances she faced as a single mother, made God a constant priority in her life, transferring what matters, passing on her own beliefs, and teaching me what she knew was right and true.  That desire to learn, dive into faith, and develop a relationship with Christ was so strong.  I was eager. I tend to become sad as I reminisce the days of my childhood where my faith was so prominent in my life--Sad, knowing that today my faith is nowhere near the level it once resided.

In those teen years, I was young and like any teenager, held a desire to fit in with those around me.  Competition, self-discovery, and temptation all sat within a bird’s eye view.  But I think those life lessons all encompass what it means to ‘grow up’.   This ‘growing up’ could have coincided with the alternative, had I not chosen the narrow option. I rather enjoy the fact that I wasn't involved in much trouble young teens indulge in at that age.  Discovering myself and what my faith consisted of in an environment lacking any drugs, sex, or immorality presents a pride in itself. 

This pride, both derived from my mother and choosing the narrow has seemingly slipped into a blind spot. Masked by the doubts centered around faith, and frustrations later years have brought.  I quote the author in feeling  ‘For a long time, I viewed my faith issues much like I view my house when it gets too messy—I stand back, take it all in, and conclude the mess is too overwhelming, so I make a cup of coffee and walk away.’ It becomes a fear to really sit down and muster through the unknown. Many excuses and reasons have been given in hopes that it will be put on the back burner for a little while longer.  I guess this article has not only forced myself to accept the need to understand my own beliefs, but it validates the importance of them--For in order to diminish any doubts regarding Jonah’s personal growth in Christ, I must strengthen my own.   

Noting this, I have prayed asking to desensitize any fear.   Digging deep into the doubts I hold, may bring forth new doubts, may confront the reality that my faith is nowhere near the level I state. That truth is scary. A couple of weeks ago, Patrick and I watched “The Passion of the Christ.” Every time I see that movie, it brings me to tears.  Weeping more is a word to describe the nature. Amongst the reminders given of what I know true, I always get a sense of guilt and the doubt I hold resurfaces.  The definition of faith is perplexing; a belief in the unseen.   Jealousy surfaces and I question why the followers of Jesus and those living among him so many years ago had the privilege of seeing Him.  Why must I live in a world where just believing is the means of salvation? Why can’t I touch His nail struck hands, or see Him walk on water?  And even if I was present in that day and age, would I have believed in Him had I seen?  I do believe I would have, for I know I believe in Him without such vision..but it just always leaves me with a ‘what-if’ mentality and makes me question my own faith foundation.

And to note the familiar question--one I am sure is present with the disastrous event in Boston-- why must we live in such a world of destruction?  Reading of all the turmoil taking place in our country and those foreign makes me ask why? Is it evil? Why must evil be present and occur in the lives of the innocent? Why so vividly must it lie in the time I live in—the time my children live in? And if I don’t know the answer to that—how am I to answer to a child with similar wonder? Unprecedentedly, I've grown to know these frustrations give root to an arrogance towards those who lack any such doubts.  Claims of growth and validity of one’s faith tend to frustrate me further--Most likely crediting to the lack of answers in my own faith.

With this prayer for a deeper understanding into the doubts I've let live within me, I have also prayed for a validation of the things that I do know.  If I stood back and took into account the things that I do know and have learned in younger years more often enough—various verses, life lessons, bible passages--I think I would surprise myself.   I think it would allow me to move forward and re-open the truth of what I've learned.  It would give me the means to put forth a stronger effort and probably diminish some of the guilt I feel in not setting that stronger example of faith. The example I desire to set for my children.

What I do know is that my God is love. He is the definition of it. He gave His son for us and died for us.   The author validated the same—in that she wants her children to know the limitless love of God.  If what I pass down to my children is God’s love, and showing them that loving one another is what matters, I know He will work in their lives in a deeper way imaginable. For I know the faith I held in younger years was a result of knowing the love God holds. My parents may have had doubts in their own faith, but never allowed their own issues to get in the way of teaching me about our loving Savior. 

It’s evident, as I mentally process this post that I must face these doubts head on.  I must focus on mending my inner struggles and faith issues within.  I ask that a continuous prayer be made on my behalf for the courage to do so.  To parallel that, however, I vow to reaffirm what I do know, and take the more simplistic approach that endorses the innocent faith God asks us to have. Jonah is noticeably in the stage where he will believe most everything, we as parents, tell him. My hope is that God’s limitless love is seen in my actions, words, and heart as a mother. Thus resulting in a childlike, un-tampered faith. A strong faith that can one day withstand adulthood.   An assured one…and coincidentally one less complicated. 




A paint party!!

4.14.2013


This year's birthday party was so much fun to plan.  Knowing that Jonah loves painting and crafts of any sort, the moment I found a fun pottery studio that offered painting parties for kids I called and booked the date for the birthday boy.  We invited 8 of his friends (and 11 adults) to come and paint with us--they all had a blast, as they were given a chance to paint one ceramic figurine in as many colors desired, eat pizza, devour cupcakes and overall have a merry good time celebrating Jonah!  

The 'painters' at work!
presents!
It was so fun watching Jonah.  A thought of disbelief that my son is three has been a constant one the past couple of days.  Just remembering his birth story, and reminiscing over how much joy he has brought our family has brought my emotions to new levels. (As if being pregnant doesn't heighten them already!)  Here's to a beautiful baby boy, born three years ago--we cannot imagine our lives without you! 

Happy 3rd Birthday, Jonah!
The adults clearly had fun, too! :)

You give this mom a themed party--I am on it!  I had so much fun finding the perfect items to go in the 'paint can' favors.  From the invitations to the cupcakes, 'paint' seeped into everything I put my crafty hands on!


That said, I must give credit, where credit is due--

Invites/favor tags/paper cupcake toppers: Little Mavens paper studio
Party banner: Bella & Teo boutique
Edible paint palette cupcake toppers: Sweet Lavender Bake Shoppe

Party favors:
paint can containers/stickers: Stuff4Scrapbooking.com
paint chip notebooks: Ivy Lane designs
art class crayon roll ups: Artisticsoul Designs
paint brush Rice Krispies Treats: Sweet Bites MS
watercolors/sidewalk chalk/paint pots: Michaels
foam paint rollers: Amazon

Jonah is THREE

4.12.2013

Today my baby turned three.  It's so fun looking at all the photos of the day he was born and looking at him now, seeing what a bright, smart, funny little boy he has become.  Today we celebrated his birthday by going bowling.  My parents came up for the day to celebrate with us.  It brought me so much joy watching him bowl and interact with my parents. He loved each and every turn he took, and did quite well! (my pride was comically hit a little when he outscored me on a game...) We came home and had a chance to sing 'Happy Birthday' and cut into the yummy chocolate 'Lightening McQueen' cake he has been asking for for quite some time.  Happy Birthday to my sweet boy--you have brought us so much joy..




Easter 2013

3.31.2013


We had a great Easter this year.  Jonah woke up and was so excited to see what the Easter bunny had brought him..he couldn't even wait for daddy to get up out of bed to run downstairs and see!  As usual, the  Easter bunny does not disappoint!  We followed in the excitement with a little Easter egg hunt outside.  It was pretty cute watching Jonah get all the Easter eggs into the basket.  He made sure to stop for a minute to see and devour what was inside the eggs.  He pressed on tho, making sure to get each and every egg.  It was hard work carrying that basket around..it was rather heavy after all was said and done!  The rest of the day was spent playing in the warm sun that our Lord brought us, and enjoying the time spent together as a family. 

God given joy

3.08.2013

With purposeful and intentional delay we are happy to announce that we will be seeing a bit more pink this coming July! We are so very grateful and excited knowing God has blessed our family in abundance, providing a son and now a daughter.  Reasons behind this delay involve ones of the obvious--withholding our exciting news throughout the first trimester, guaranteeing a viable, healthy pregnancy-- but I think other reason lies around the idea that I want to cherish this time, this moment in my life where I know it will be my last to engage in all that the first months of pregnancy offer.

I was one of the few who did not experience all the symptoms and frustrations pregnancy offers when pregnant with Jonah.  Let me preface this and say, yes, there were definitely moments, especially towards the end, when I was uncomfortable, irritable, and emotional.  But the lists of early symptoms us women develop in the early months were not recognizable.  Time flew by, and excitement masked any notable symptoms.

If I wasn't given the grand opportunity to experience all that pregnancy had to offer with my first, I believe my second is making up for it. To be honest—I am happy and grateful I have had this opportunity—though painful, frustrating, and disappointing at times, it puts me on that list of moms who can attest to what pregnancy is all about.  You name the symptom— I've met it firsthand.*  Those including nausea, cravings, soreness, indigestion, constipation, mild cramping, heart burn, leg cramps, difficulty sleeping, and acid re-flux  It’s all been present in the last 20 weeks, coming here and there, thankfully never over staying its welcome, but always regretfully returning for unexpected visits.

*A little disclaimer here—my mother can attest to my body’s willingness to hardly ever throw up.  I literally have vomited less than 5 times in my life, so if we disregard the ‘vomiting’, every other symptom has been checked off the list. Trust me; I've prayed to throw up.  I've cried out in moments of weakness to “please, please, please allow me some relief!” But my body’s ‘no go’ mentality will not budge. 

Yesterday, any movement was painful.  The only thing on my mind was willing myself not to move, in fear of another onset of nausea or worse.  I remember breathing heavily, grasping air to distract any waves of sickness to crash.  I felt her kick and had a moment of clarity.   In these moments of weakness; the dreadful, excruciating moments where you are faced with the reality of it all, the stage where you are crying in pain, lying on the bathroom floor, slowly chewing the saltine cracker, there’s a brief point, in the minutes following, where you see the joy in it all.  She gives you a small reminder of movement that she’s still there.  And she's enduring it all with you.  A God given clarity that this too shall pass.  Giving us the strength to get through this together,  He allowed me to see joy in my moment of weakness. 




With the recognizable symptoms this time around, it seems this joy is continuously and noticeably given.  My prospective is broader and I am filled with hope, and excitement of what God has in store for us in the next couple of months. I hear the laughing of my beautiful boy, dream of color schemes for her nursery, imagine them happily playing together and know that I have been so blessed. That moment of weakness has passed and I am blessed with the desires of my heart.

Motherhood is a blessing.  It truly is.  Despite all that a mother has to endure during her pregnancy, from past and recent experience, I am positive the received joy outweighs all the rest. This coming July, our hearts will be filled and the said symptoms of pregnancy will be masked, tho not forgotten, by a God given joy.


milestones--shmilestones...

2.11.2013


I tend to beat myself up when reading into what the parenting world views as the ‘norm’. Parental comparisons start to form when learning what the appropriate ages are for various childhood milestones. When should one start the transition to solid foods? At what age should we as parents wean our little ones off the ‘binky’? Is it  time to progress into a toddler bed? When should I start thinking about potty training? When these specific deadlines in Jonah’s age approach and, God forbid, the milestones have not been met, it frustrates me to no end.  It fills me with self-doubt and makes me question my own validity on the parenting scale. But in honesty, I don’t know why I allow the self-pity and the rally of questions.  I know that each child is different.  I've learned that reaching these milestones are just that--reaching them.  When training for my half marathon, yes, I trained, hard.  It took several months of discipline. But when crossing that finish line  I didn't think to myself, "I should have done this sooner or when I was younger". I wasn't ready to endure the discipline it took to train a few years prior to then. I know comparing my son’s milestones to mine are few and far between, but it has helped me understand that clearly we will reach them all when we are ready. 

Back in May of last year, Jonah had learned to climb out of his crib. Every nap time, every night.  He would literally do a flip out of his crib, head first mind you, and land on his bum. It came to a point where I would sleep with one eye open in fear that he would wake up and I’d have seconds to spare only to hear the dreaded boom from him hitting the floor. Patrick was away at WIC training, and I knew something had to be done.  The question arose—is it time to transition to a toddler bed?  I knew the timing wasn’t right.  I knew it would just be a fight to get him to stay in his bed.  It already was.  Even though all the internet sights, parenting books, and mothers around me softly mentioned he was at the prime age to transition, I knew he wasn't ready.  A crib tent solved the problem perfectly, and despite the feeling that I had to justify my reasoning, I know it was a decision that fostered many restful nights for all of us.   

Furthermore, for many that know me, I am and have become an advocate for child naps.  I strongly believe and know that naps, or lack thereof, can make or break a day.  So when a few weeks of Jonah striking against a nap occurs, I fear the inevitable.  That prime age the parenting world views—‘around 2 or 2. 5 years of age’ that a nap may disappear from a child’s daily routine lingers in my mind. The cycle begins, frustration, followed by doubt, and so on and so on….

I begin to reflect on what I've learned thus far with these said milestones and unlike some where I worry much longer on the topic (solid foods, potty training, transition to a toddler bed) I firmly take a stand on this one.  I know what is best for my child (and for my sanity).  These naps will continue to prevail in the Hancock household as long as I see the need.   The past couple weeks or so, Jonah had been napping in our bed.  He seemed to enjoy the aspect of being ‘tucked’ in.   It quickly dawned on me that I could stray away from any fight he might present just by allowing him the comfort of sleeping in ‘mommy and daddy’s' bed.  He’d fall asleep in less than 10 minutes flat.  This mere realization quickly led to another.  He was ready for a toddler bed. 


Friday evening, Jonah soundly slept in his new toddler bed.  It was the easiest transition by far.  Dismissing the emotional mother that I was Friday evening, realizing my baby is, in fact, growing up, I knew this progression would have been a nightmare if done any sooner. There was no fussing, no crying, and no getting out of his bed.  Here I sit one pleased parent.   I know among the vast amount of parents out there several have successfully gone through this transition with their child at a younger age than Jonah.  Some parents continue to allow their child a 'binky' when the presence of Jonah’s made its way out the door several months ago.  I know several children younger than Jonah who are fully potty trained.   Jonah is not. 

Clearly this slightly long rant signifies a continuous need to justify to myself why these said milestones aren't always met under the guidelines given.  Milestones--shmilestones, I tell ya. There is no harm in buying a few more boxes of diapers, and why worry if Jonah started earlier on solids a few months earlier than that said, “norm"?   In the end,  it doesn't reflect on who I am as a mother, or any parent who reads this—each child is different.  As parents, we are given this opportunity to direct and guide them rightfully in their own time.  




an absent introspective me ... and Christmas 2012

1.03.2013


I've been putting off blogging for a while. I honestly don't know why.  I could blame it on exhaustion or business of life. Honestly--I know I've had time, have thought maybe I can blog today and catch up on holiday events and photos, but always shrug my shoulders and say, tomorrow perhaps. Even now as I've typed these two sentences I've thought of other things I could be doing, went upstairs to check on Jonah who is bouncing around during his supposed nap time and just getting more frustrated by the minute by such circumstances-those in myself, the mere fact of my procrastination (tho reason stated as unknown), and more so in which time has just slipped through my fingers. I have felt there is a part of me that wants to hold on to the memories, and moments I have experienced lately. I feel much more introspective lately. And I feel selfish not wanting to write or put any words down.

Jonah's naps have become hit or miss, he talks non-stop, has grown up so fast in a matter of months that I feel I've missed some of it. His smile is contagious.  His heart is big, and his curiosity is ever so present. Regardless if I have been there every moment with him, I have felt distant. I have had personal moments where I am reminded to cherish this gift God has given in front of me and to not take advantage of this opportunity God has given me--to be a mother to such a beautiful boy.

Reading these two paragraphs already written it's clear-- to me, and probably to any reader-- that my heart is heavy. This time of year, I usually reflect on the past year and with a hopeful heart look forward to all of the wonderful memories God will provide in the upcoming year. But honestly, I haven't had energy to dig deep and reflect. Yes, I will note the things I've learned I am sure in months to come, but my mind is foggy and I honestly think frustration would be the end of it at the moment.

I have many current emotions--ones of guilt, ones of doubt, grateful, hopeful, and uncertainty.  But I wont dismiss the fact and reason why I started blogging in the first place. To document the events and provide an escape to do what was just done--to be honest with myself and the few readers that read our blog where I've been and reasons for my absence. So reason somewhat stated, and with that out of the way, here are a few photos taken over the holidays.

Santa brought the coolest helicopter EVER!
A dinosaur puzzle from PopPop
Patrick's father came to visit over Christmas.  We had a chance to visit family in Oregon and spend Christmas Eve and day at home. We had a wonderful time watching Jonah experience Christmas, truly knowing what presents are, and seeing the excitement and wonderment in his eyes when the reindeer did in fact come and eat all the oats and 'food'(glitter, sprinkles, and such of course!) off our front driveway. We participated in all the fun that the season had to offer--seeing Santa, Christmas lights, drinking hot cocoa, building a gingerbread house, watching Christmas movies(Charlie Brown's Christmas is a favorite), and making cookies are a few to happily note.

the decorator (and taster!)
cookie making at it's finest
Hopefully this next month I will make more of an effort to capture and document these special moments our family endures. In the meantime, I will be rummaging through my foggy emotions with hope that God will help me understand some of it.

Many blessings and wishes for a happy and memorable New Year.