Thursday, April 26, 2007
Posted by Christine at 11:36 AM
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Preparing for After Baby's Arrival
It amazes me how truly practical one becomes when she is expecting her third child. Now, if someone asked me what would be the greatest baby gift, I would have to say it would be a Food Saver. (I know, totally random- but that is just me.) I was the typical first time mom who thought I needed 500 outfits for my quickly growing wee one. Now, it isn't the clothes or most typical baby items, which I see a need for, but rather, for certain tools to help my household to run more efficiently post-baby. Now, I don't have the money for such a gadget as a Food Saver, but I am planning on borrowing my sister-in-law's. That way, I can prepare some meals, and they can be successfully frozen, prior to baby's arrival. I have tried doing the same in regular freezer bags, but they always turn out rather yucky. I am also hoping to cook up several pounds of beef and chicken, and to freeze them in individual portions. Meals like Chicken stir fry are so nice to make, this way! I just grab a lb. of cooked, frozen, cut-up chicken breast and zap it in the microwave for a few minutes. Then I just cook some brown rice and a bag of frozen veggies and mix with the chicken. Having recipes such as that, helps me to actually be able to make meals, rather than resorting to "any old thing". The last thing that a newborn, nursing baby needs is his/her mama to eat unhealthily! Another thing that helps a lot too is to have a lot of healthy snacks around the house. After we arrived home after Stevie was born, DH went to the Farmer's Market right away. They have wonderful prices and such delicious fruits which really gave me a lot of strength. Any mother, but especially nursing mothers, need a lot of healthy snacks! I also want to make, in advance, Energy Bars and Granola. For any other expectant mothers, I highly recommend gleaning from some of Tammy's Great Tips for preparing for after the baby arrives.I would love to hear from all moms, whether you are a new or seasoned mama, as to what has worked for you. Blessings!
Posted by Christine at 3:28 PM
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Yesterday, when Lily and Stevie were watching a movie, I found them snuggling so sweetly! First, Lily (aka Mama Jr.) covered her "baby boy" to make sure he was nice and warm. Then she got a blanket for herself and snuggled with him. These two blessings are such treasures! I love how much they love each other. Blessings to you!
Posted by Christine at 7:04 AM
My Spring Reading
I have been so encouraged and edified by the books I have read/ am reading in April. I wanted to share some of my thoughts about them with you, dear friends in Christ.
Anne of Green Gables- I am continuing to read this to Lily (and Stevie when (if?) he sits still). She really enjoys it and I am very impressed by the way she sits still and listens. For anyone who has only seen these movies, you will find a true delight in reading these books. Children simply love the antics of Miss Anne Shirley! Lily astonished me the other day when she could not stop talking about "puffed sleeves".
The Pilgrim's Progress- I am still in the beginning of this book, but I already can see what a treasure it is! It is written so beautifully and is a real encouragement in the Christian walk.
Ina May's Guide to Childbirth- This is the modern and updated version of Spiritual Midwifery. It is such an eye-opening and enlightening book regarding childbirth. She candidly recounts numerous birth stories, which have occurred at her birthing center, the Farm, over the years. This is a really enlightening book which shows the dangers of modern birthing practices and ways to have the very best birth for you. This is one of my top recommendations for expectant mothers. I was so blessed to be able to find a copy at my library, through inter-library loans.
The Birth Book- I ordered this book from Amazon, last week. It was around $7.00, including shipping. This book is written by Dr. Sears and his wife. This is such an amazingly thorough book including the trends of birthing, throughout history, and ample information on how to best be prepared for birth. I love the clear pictures of the optimum laboring and birthing positions. This is an incredible resource for any birthing mama.
How to Crochet- I love crocheting, but I only know the basics. So I checked this book out to broaden my crocheting scope. This book has so many cute projects, and very nice visuals for amateurs like me.
I would love to hear what books you are enjoying. What are your favorite books to read to your children? Blessings!
Posted by Christine at 6:26 AM
Sunday, April 22, 2007
Menu Plan Monday
I wanted to share with you how I made Brunch Braids on Sunday. I had the bread machine make the dough for me. Then I rolled it out with my rolling pin.
I cooked eggs and bacon, which was the filling for the Brunch Braids.
I divided the dough into sections, and filled it with the egg mixture. I then braided it on top. They were delicious!
Monday~Lasagna, Bread, and Salad
Tuesday~ Chicken Stir Fry with Brown Rice
Wednesday~ off~ Sister-in-law is cooking
Thursday~ Beef Stromboli
Friday~ Homemade Pizza
Saturday~ Thai Peanut Noodles
Sunday~ Kielbasa and Potato Casserole (Church Fellowship meal)
For more menu plans, visit Laura.
Friday, April 20, 2007
Our Electric Co-Op Meeting
Last night, we attended our annual Electric company's co-op meeting. Hubby went to the meeting part, while I watched the children. They had a lot of (free) fun!
Stevie having fun playing basketball!
My big girl having a blast!
Nothing stopped Stevie from doing climbing even the highest heights. Everyone marveled at this little two year old.
Lily and Stevie were having so much fun writing with chalk. Lily is being a stinker in this picture! Interesting side note- (Lately, I seem to find a birth comparison in everything) Take a look at Stevie squatting. Anyone who has little ones probably has observed them frequently squatting. As we get older, we lose practice, especially us ladies, because it is "not ladylike". But it is a natural position, which best prepares one's body for birth. I am very grateful to Dr.Bradley for teaching me that! Blessings!
Posted by Christine at 6:35 AM
Please pray for Candy , as she is going through quite an ordeal, right now. My heart goes out to her!
Posted by Christine at 6:27 AM
Thursday, April 19, 2007
I have not been able to post too much lately because of attending to my children and household needs. They are my jewels, who I want to cherish every moment with. I am trying to focus on the most important priorities, which God has given to me. I also have been very consumed in reading books which help prepare me for birth. I am amazed at what I have learned as of late. If I am not posting as frequently as I have been, please understand that this is just a busy time for me. I am grateful for those who have written out of concern.
This past Saturday, dh got up early to take the wee ones to Grandma and Grandpa's house, so we could go to our first Bradley class . I was expecting the class to be rather dull, but it was simply amazing! There are three other couples in our class. (It is supposed to be a small class, so it is more personal.) We have learned so many exercises, nutritional information, and many other wonderful things to better prepare our bodies for birth. I am amazed at how much just squatting can prepare your body for birthing. Some hospital beds supposedly are equipped with squatting bars, but getting the medical staff's consent to use them is another story. Just incorporating squatting into my daily routine (rather than bending down to pick something up) has really helped my back to feel better. It is amazing how one's body responds when you realize that pain is a message, and rather than taking a pill to fix it, change something you are doing wrong. When I eat healthier and exercise, I feel so much better. It used to be my tendency to pop a pill when I had a headache. But it is my body's way of telling me that I need either more sleep, or something else. It is so important that we tune into our bodies' messages.
One reason why I am so determined to birth naturally is because I feel that there is something I have missed out on in my other two births. Right before transition I tend to just give up, and get the epidural. Then, I feel painless, but when the medical staff tells me to push, I don't feel anything. It is very confusing and difficult to push a baby out when you are completely numb! If I remember that the pain is there for a reason and is passing, and that I need to calmly respond to it (with God's grace). I want to cling to the Father to help me through this. I don't want to run away scared, but to cling to Him. I know that I can "Do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." (Philippians 4:13) I am not seeking to be "wonder woman", I am seeking to learn all that He has for me to learn. I want to grow in Him and cling to Him alone. The times that I have grown in Him the most, are when I have experienced difficulties, and had no where else to go, but to Jesus' feet. No matter how this birth goes, as long as I cling to Him and seek His Face, I know that all will be "well with my soul".
Image available from www.art.com On the Terrace
Posted by Christine at 9:40 AM
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Posted by Christine at 8:15 PM
Friday, April 13, 2007
Last night, we took a 4 mile walk on the river trail. It was so much fun. The scenery was absolutely beautiful, as it overlooks a golf course, a waterfall, and the beautiful river. The trail is nicely paved and has many slopes and curves. So it can be quite a challenge, after walking it for a while. I am so grateful that my hubby is helping me to get into better shape. I am so thankful for this beautiful weather, which makes spending time outside so lovely. Have a blessed weekend!
Posted by Christine at 10:36 AM
Funny Musings from Lily
This morning, Stevie was begging to be held as I did a myriad of household tasks. I overheard Lily lecturing him that, "Mommy can't hold you right now. She's pregant. Right , Mommy, you're pregant?" I thought that was too cute!
Posted by Christine at 10:12 AM
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Posted by Christine at 3:34 PM
27 Weeks !
Another Pregnancy Note:
After feeling unrest with my current pre-natal care, and after seeking His Will, we are switching to midwifery care for the rest of my pregnancy. I am so grateful to have such a supportive husband. He is willing to pay any price, just to give me and my precious babe a birth which I feel more comfortable with. Have a joyful day!
"Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations." -Jeremiah 1:5
Posted by Christine at 3:02 PM
Works for me Wednesday
Do you ever have one of those homeschool days where you child has simply had enough with his formal books and worksheets? If so, it might be a great time to throw in some educational activities and games, which make learning fun! Sometimes, when my daughter is tired of learning handwriting on paper, I let her practice writing with chalk on our driveway. I also teach my little ones about different shapes, such as pentagons, octagons, and diamonds, while we are drawing with chalk. It is easy to practice math, by writing math sums outside. Another way to practice math is by doing domino math. You can have your child add, subtract, or multiply the numbers on either side of the middle line of the domino. My son has really gotten good at counting by simply tossing a large ball to him, and counting with him. When we take walks around the block, we skip count by 2's, 5's, and 10's, sometimes. For older children, you could practice multiplication this way. Learning geography well is easy when you use a large wall map to teach your child one new country a week. My map has flags on it, so we try to learn the country and the corresponding flag. It is very important to review the countries they have learned, often. Anytime you read a book, which occurs in a particular location, mark it on the map. Whenever something is happening in world events, mark it on the map. If missionaries visit your church , mark where they live on the map, and encourage your children to pray for them. Making geography "real" helps in making those important connections which will help your children to retain the information. Blessings as you enjoy learning with your little ones! For more Works for me Wednesday ideas, visit Shannon.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Birthing Books I am Reading:
* The Birth Book (I ordered this a few days ago and it should arrive soon!)
* Gentle Birth Choices (Library book with a dvd- I am finished with this one. I would rate it a 9- very informative and documentation of facts.)
*Ina May's Guide to Childbirth (Library Book-Very eye opening and full of great birth stories! I am about half-way through this book.)
*Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way (Library Book-Wonderfully informative!)
One thing which I found very interesting, is that the main books which really educate you about birthing and your body, tend to highly encourage natural birthing. My library had books which were amazingly pro-homebirth. Blessings!
Posted by Christine at 12:00 PM
Thanks to my Sweetheart!
I want to thank my dear husband for his diligence yesterday in cleaning the house. He scrubbed the kitchen floor, bathroom floors, and tubs (on his hands and knees) after working so hard at work yesterday. A few months ago, he asked me not to do those particular chores anymore during pregnancy, and he has so graciously taken over these tasks. I am so blessed to have such a thoughtful husband, who puts others' needs above his own. He is such a blessing from God, and quite an example of having a servant's heart. I am grateful that he is so compassionate towards his wife, and the well-being of his unborn baby. Stephen, I simply cannot thank God adequately for the gift He has given me, in you!
Posted by Christine at 9:44 AM
Monday, April 09, 2007
Posted by Christine at 5:53 PM
Menu Plan Monday:
Monday~April 9~ Mexican Rice Casserole
Tuesday~April 10~ Chicken Noodle Soup- Meal change because of colds
Wednesday~April 11~off~ Family Meal Night
Thursday~April 12~Black Bean and Rice Enchiladas
Friday~April 13th~ Pizza
Saturday~April 14th~ Beef Burritos
As you can tell, this is going to be a very zesty week of meals for us, with Mexican style meals, 3 nights!
I wanted to share with you a picture of the Spinach Quiche which I made last week. It was simply delicious! I am planning on making 3-4 of them next week, when it is our family's turn to cook for the extended family.The pie crust recipe can be found here and the Quiche filling can be found here. Blessings to you! For more menu plans, visit Laura.
Saturday, April 07, 2007
Posted by Christine at 12:36 PM
Posted by Christine at 12:30 PM
Friday, April 06, 2007
The Coolest Bird Feeder Ever!
I just had to share with you this amazing bird feeder, which fits inside your window. You can get a full view of the birdies, up close and personal! At first when I saw it, I thought, "Great idea, but with my little ones, the birds will never go in the feeder. The birds will be too scared." But then I read that it has one way glass, so you can see the birds, but they do not see you. (Well, maybe they should have made it soundproof, too!) What an awesome tool for learning more about identifying birds! At $15, the price is definitely feasible. Blessings!
Posted by Christine at 10:54 PM
This is a wonderful link for teaching your children about the resurrection while making Easter cookies! (Saturday Evening)
This is a link with a plethora of Easter worksheets, crafts, recipes, and stories.
The Three Marys at the Tomb by William Bougeureau Available at art.com
Posted by Christine at 9:28 PM
Easter Blessings! I pray that all of you have a very blessed weekend. I am trying to enjoy this time, and not just get caught up in the usual hub of activities. I want to truly reflect on the precious gift of salvation, which Christ so unworthily gave to me. Some wonderful sermons on Easter, by the Spurgeon, Luther, and others, can be found here. Even if you read just a little excerpt of one, it is so helpful in guiding our hearts towards heaven. Tonight, I am planning on coloring some eggs with my children. Sometimes it can seem difficult to convey the events from Good Friday through Easter Sunday to children, when they are young. But I know it is imperative to work with their supple and tender hearts, that one day they may trust in the Loving Father, for their salvation as well. I treasure Lily's tender heart regarding God. She trusts so simply and so beautifully in everything she learns about Him. It is a true blessing to be able to help mold her's and her brother's souls, yet it comes with great responsibility. On Sunday, we are attending church with Stephen's whole family. They usually have an Easter egg hunt afterwords, and then we will all share a meal together at my sister-in-law's. We are all bringing something for the meal.Ham, homemade bread, mashed potatoes, green beans, and desserts sounds delightful. (Especially to this always hungry expectant mother!) Have a blessed and prayerful weekend as you reflect on the Perfect Act of Love bestowed on imperfect man. I would love to hear what your favorite Christ-centered Easter activities are. Blessings!
"Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me." -Matthew 28:10
"Behold his empty tomb, O true believer: it is a sign of thine acquittal, and thy full discharge. If Jesus had not paid the debt, he ne'er had risen from the grave. He would have lain there till this moment if he had not cancelled the entire debt, by satisfying eternal vengeance. O beloved, is not that an overwhelming thought?" -Charles SpurgeonImage "Easter Greetings" from www.allposters.com
Posted by Christine at 11:23 AM
Thursday, April 05, 2007
"Except for being hanged by the feet, the supine position (laying on one's back) is the worst possible position for labor and delivery." -Dr.Roberto Caldeyro-Barcia (Past President of the International Association of Ob/Gyns)
"One Clinical trial, which studied the outcomes of women who had elective cesarean sections because of gestational diabetes, showed no better outcomes than the control group and a significantly higher incidence of mortality of babies." Gentle Birth Choices, pg. 46
Regarding Electronic Fetal Monitors during birth:
"As early as 1980 the National Institute of Health cautioned against the use of the monitor for low-risk pregnancies, predicting that it would only contribute to more cesareans." (which has been the case) (-U.S. Preventative Services Task Force)
Lilacs by the Window available from www.art.com
Posted by Christine at 2:56 PM
My Easter Lily
I simply had to take pictures last night, in front of my sister-in-law's gorgeous azaleas. I am glad Lily got to wear a pretty spring dress because it will be cold here for Easter. I am very grateful that our extended family will be getting together for Easter, because originally, no one had plans. Easter is always such a joyful time!
Posted by Christine at 9:49 AM
Monday, April 02, 2007
My Interesting Pre-natal Appointment
Today, through God's grace (and with the support of my husband), I became one of those rare women who has refused the glucose test at an ob/gyn's office. I must admit, it did not occur without a fight. The nurse poured me a glass and said, "Drink this." I said, "I am refusing the test." She said, "You cannot do that." I said, "I can refuse any test which I want to." She looked simply aghast, and she finished with some paperwork. As usual, I sat in the room waiting for 1 1/2 hours to be seen by the doctor. (After waiting in the waiting room for 30 minutes.) Anyways, then the doctor, talked to me for about 20 minutes about the test. I did not back down. I stated that I find it very unnatural to make a pregnant woman fast, then drink a super sugary drink, and then get blood taken. I told her that I have been watching my diet anyways, so the test is unnecessary for me. She kept giving me the run around (though she was nice about it) and I said that I am still completely opposed to it for myself. She said I might end up with a huge baby. I stated that "I am 26 weeks (almost) and I weigh 118 pounds." I have only gained about 15-18 pounds this pregnancy. Also, my baby always measures a week small, so it is very unlikely that I have gestational diabetes. She asked if I would just consent to a finger prick, and I said, "That is fine." I almost fell out of the chair when I saw the results. They said "60". The phlebotomist said that my sugars are actually too low and that I need to eat something. Normal levels, they said are 70-135. I thought that was hysterical. I had only fasted since 1:30 p.m. since my appointment was at 2:30. But sitting in the doctor's office took forever, and that is why my sugars dropped that low. I was scared at first that it said 160, so I could not stop cracking up when I found out that it said 60! My husband said that he was so proud for me, the way I stood up for myself and my beliefs. I usually don't feel like I am good at discussing my beliefs while on my feet , I am far better at writing them. But one thing I did mention to the doctor was that I belive that every woman should have "the right to choose" the tests which she wants to take. Yes, I used the liberal mantra to fit my conservative agenda. Don't ya just love it? (I find it extremely hypocritical that a woman can "choose" to terminate her pregnancy, yet she cannot simply veto a mere test. (without grief) Something is truly wrong in the medical system for working that way!) By the way, I am not condemning anyone who has taken this test. I have researched a lot on it, and I have made my mind up for myself. One thing that startled me (in studying about this test) was that 30% of women fail the first test, and only 3% fail the second test. I have taken the 3 hour test before, and fasting all night till noon, and drinking several sugary drinks on an empty stomach, and getting my blood taken every hour was very frustrating and cannot be healthy for an unborn baby. After the whole ordeal was over, the lab asked me why I even was sent there. My levels were so good. I highly recommend doing your own research regarding any medical drugs/tests you are pressured to take. You have every right to refuse something that you are not comfortable with! Have a blessed day!
Posted by Christine at 3:37 PM
An Encouraging Article for Homeschool Mothers
To read a terrific article regarding homeschool mothers, click here. I must get ready for my pre-natal appointment; I will update more when I can. I hope you are having a joyful day.
Posted by Christine at 12:29 PM