Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"My Hear Rejoices in the Lord"....

Awhile back, I wrote a post about how some days, it was so easy to forget that our children are a blessing from the Lord.  That for every woman with an  "unwanted" pregnancy, there is another woman desperately crying out to God for just one.

I told you about another very dear friend, and fellow blogger, April, who was one of those women who wanted nothing more than to have a child of her own.  Yet, it never seemed to happen.  The Lord really laid her on my heart, and I began to pray each day for her.  She reminded me of Hannah, in the Bible, who desperately wanted a child of her own.  She went to the temple and prayed.  She was so passionate in her prayer that the priest thought she was drunk.  But, God looked down on her, and blessed her with a child.  

"My heart rejoices in the Lord; my horn is exalted in the Lord.
I smile at my enemies, because I rejoice in Your salvation.
No one is holy like the Lord, for there is none besides You,
Nor is there any rock like our God." (I Samuel 2:1-2)

That was Hannah's prayer of thanksgiving.  I am SO happy to be able to report that my sweet friend April can pray that prayer now! April and her husband have just found out that they are expecting!  I was almost as happy as the day I found out I was pregnant with my own children.

Now begins the fun part!  I was reading her blog this evening, and it reminded me of all the advice first time moms get.  Some of it is great, other times its terrifying.  Sometimes you think its sound, and other times it leaves you scratching your head thinking "well that kid is going to need therapy".  

I am certainly no pro at the mom thing.  I mean, I am going to be able to save my daughter a ton of money on a shrink my just admitting that I have screwed up many times, and it probably is all my fault.  But, my children are healthy.  They are beautiful, smart, kind, loving, and so far, at least one of them has my smart-ass wit and determination.  I'm certain the other does as well, but he still can't speak English enough to know for sure.  Tonight, after I read April's blog, I watched The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.  Quite possibly the best movie ever.  It got me to wondering what advice I would give my friend.  So, here is my top 10 list of things I think she should know!

1.  Don't wish your pregnancy away!  You only have 9 months to feel the life inside you kicking.  Nine months to have the best excuse for being fat and eating as much as you want.  I enjoyed every moment of being pregnant, and honestly miss it.

2.  Yes, it hurts.  Yes, there are drugs.  Yes, women have been doing it forever.

3.  Don't read too many parenting books!  I decided when I was pregnant with Flower that, other than books on my pregnancy, I would not read parenting books.  I still haven't (and as far as I can tell, my children are relatively normal).  Here is why: there are a million and one books telling us how we should parent our children, which approaches we should take, etc.  But once that little one starts developing their own personality, all bets are off!  I don't want to kill my child's spirit before I even figure out what it is!  Trust your instincts, and most importantly, trust God.

4.  Sleep while you can.

5.  As my Granny says "You can't spoil them with love."  This goes hand in hand with number 3.  As long as you love your children, and do the very best you can, it will all be OK.  Hug them every chance you get!

6.  Start wearing gaudy necklaces made with beads and yarn now.  You will get many in the future.

7.  You will get incredibly hormonal.  You will cry.  At everything.  I once cried because I walked outside and thought how beautiful a day it was.  Barb Wire Man laughed. I hit him.  

8.  Some women will tell you not to view pregnancy as a handicap, i.e., don't be babied.  Some say if you can do it when you aren't pregnant, you can do it when you are.  Me?  I say be handicapped.  I mean, how many times in your life are you going to be able to convince your husband to paint your toenails because you can't see your feet?  Or convince him to cook supper because your back hurts?  Or lift the laundry basket because its "too heavy?!

9.  Don't let yourself go after you have kids.  Its not hard to get into the mommy-rut, which is when you haven't had a shower in 3 days, you might have baby barf (or was it smushed peas?) in your hair, you don't even know what shade of makeup you wear anymore, and you only own sweats.  Somedays will just be that way.  But, every now and then, make sure you are dressed nice, with your hair and makeup done when your hubby come home from work....he might be surprised!  Before it was Chris, April and Soybean, it was just Chris and April.  We tend to think our children need to come before out spouses, but thats just not it.  Never, ever, put your love aside, and forget to nurture it.  (I learned this when I back talked my momma once.  My daddy, who I thought was always on my side, looked at me and said "Let me tell you something, I love your momma before I ever loved you, and I will not have you disrespecting her."  Ouch!)

10.  YOU WILL FAIL AT TIMES!  It is inevitable, but kids are bouncy.  They love you no matter what and are always quick to forgive.  

And, because I miscounted and still have one more....

11.  As hard as it is, remember that Our Heavenly Father loves our kids more than we do.  He protects them better than we do, and provides for them better than we do.  And when we don't know what to do, He does.  

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Rendering Unto Ceaser.....

So today at nap time, I put off doing everything I really wanted to do, and pulled out every bit of tax information I had received and started my taxes.  This year, we were a little worried.  Since I have a home business, I do have a lot of deductions.  But, we hadn't set any money aside in the off-chance I would owe.  In fact, we were looking at doing our taxes abut the same as walking into our own funeral.

But, I summoned the courage (with the help of a friend), and started working on them.

We got a pleasant surprise in actually getting some money back.  I'm now sitting here thinking "I knew those kids would come in handy."

God's Reward
I think God is rewarding us Texas Panhandle residents for surviving the ungodly cold temperatures we experienced recently.  I mean, I wear two shirts and long underwear when it is 40 degrees out, so the -9 temperatures of last week were unbearable.  I had to wash way more laundry than usual because I bundled everyone up so much.  To make matters worse, the temp was -9....but when you throw in the 45 mph winds, it felt like -WTF.  

But yesterday, it was 80*.  Today, it is 72*.  It comes with a price of 30 mph winds, but I guess I can handle that if it is warm.  Wait.  Why do the weather men tell us we have to pay for warm weather with a high wind, but have to keep the wind when it is so cold?!  Oy.

I have been able to take the kids out to play, which equals much better nap times.  The sun has shown, and Flower has gotten to ride her bike and play basketball.  I could live outside.  When I was a child I would have been happy if I slept, ate, and played outside, and I am still that way.

The best news of the day, other than finishing the taxes, is that all the kids are asleep, and I still have an hour, roughly, before they wake up!  Think I will go make some tea and knit a bit!

I did add some new things to 13 Plum last night, and intend on adding more this evening if I have the chance.  Please take a look if you have the chance!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Per Mom's Request.....

My mom sent me a text (yes, a text.  We text quite a bit, until we realize it actually would be easier to just call each other) last night.  All she said was she had missed my writing.  Then I thought about how long it had actually been since I sat down to write.  Ooops.  So, I am sitting here today.  I can think of a bazillion other things I need to do, and I mean really need to do.  Like, scrub my toilets, fold laundry and mop my kitchen.

I have been knitting like a mad woman trying to get some things finished for the craft show on March 5th, and my house is really paying the price.  So, last night I decided that today would be a "knit-free day."  I put my knitting away where I wouldn't see it.  The day started off great, at 5:45.  I got a load in the laundry, dishwasher loaded, and was folding laundry by the time everyone else woke up.  The day care kids all showed up and my progress continued...until about 9am.  I admit, I started knitting.  But, I finished the back to a baby sweater I am making, so at least I accomplished something.

In the last two weeks, I have knit a pair of baby booties, a baby hat, a baby sweater (all matching), a bonnet shawl and wrist warmers, a large rectangular shawl.  I have also sewn tags into every item I have ever made, priced and inventoried over $1,000 worth of merchandise for the show.  I've also discovered that I have arthritis and/or carpel tunnel syndrome.  Freakin' awesome.  My joints hurt really badly, and I'm....not quite 30 yet.  Oh well.

I've mentioned before that the craft show I will be working in March is the one I grew up helping my grandmother with.  This is the first time I will be doing it without her.  I realized last night that the craft show is eerily and ironically one week from the 5 year anniversary of her death.  It doesn't seem like 5 seems like an eternity since the last conversation I had with her.  Time drags on when you miss someone.

Enough rambling before I start to cry.  One of my closest friends is coming to visit me today, so I should do something around the, clear the laundry off the couch so she has somewhere to sit.

I promise, it won't be so long before I write again!