Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Quick Journal for a Busy Mama

Since I was a little girl, the sight of an empty journal filled my heart with thoughts of endless grand entries. Judging by how consistently faithful (ha!) I am with this blog, it doesn't take much effort to imagine that I have stacks of notebooks that are filled with good intentions and very few words. Why am I so convinced that a new notebook will encourage daily entries, when the notebook before that didn't?

Now that I'm a mom, I truly want to be writing down the special things that happen each day. My boys change so quickly! Abel says such cute things and Micah's growing like a fat little weed. While we're making memories all the time, the boys are too little to remember them long term. But as I look at the priorities of my day, I know that now more than ever I don't have the time to be journaling regularly.  I needed something simple, quick, and organized.

Enter my note card journaling system. I have a stack of 3x5 cards for each month clipped together. The top of each card has a date (January 1) and then on the first line of that note card, I write the year (2012). Next to the year, I have a tiny bit of space to jot down something about the day. I've noted funny things Abel has said, special family outings, what days I had ultrasounds of Micah, etc. This is a wonderful way to keep track of those memories and dates that are soon forgotten in a busy family.

My "quick journal" box with cards so far.

Quick journal example- Reed's first day at work after Micah was born.

I'd love to take credit for this awesome idea, but I saw a version of it in a magazine a few years ago (pretty sure it was Family Fun, but I'm not positive). When my kids get older, I'd like to make writing on the cards together part of our nightly routine, getting suggestions about what we should write that day from the boys. In years to come, it will be fun to look back and see what we did on a particular day in years past!

Today, I'm linking up to We are THAT Family  for her Works for Me Wednesday party.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Way to my Heart

This evening, it's just me and the little guys- Reed is on a weekend retreat with the men from our church.

After he woke up from his nap, I asked Abel what he'd like to do with me this evening since Daddy wasn't home.

He said, "Snuggle!" which happens to be one of my favorite things.

When I asked him if he wanted to do anything else he said, "Buzz Woody three!"


I miss his Daddy tons tonight, but Abel sure knows the way to my heart!

Abel set these pillows up for us to snuggle on while I was in the other room.  He patted the big one and said, "That one  Mama's!" 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Staying at Home

I've recently discovered a blog called Passionate Homemaking: Loving Simple, Natural, and Intentional Living. The title alone really grabbed me, and I've spent a little bit of time reading, always wishing I had more time to spend poking around on the site.  I'd like to share a post of hers that encouraged me, reminding me of the benefits of being a stay at home mom that  actually stays home most of the time.


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Side Effects

Part of one of my bruises from the injections; the whole thing is the size of my hand. Most of my lower abdomen is  marked with bruises in various stages of healing. 

About 569 Lovenox shots down, 19 more to go.

 I'm in complete awe that God could use this drug to save my babies (and, in His sovereignty, allow me to take too little in my first pregnancy).   Thank you Lord for using my emotional struggles with this regimen for my sanctification and for Your glory. Praying earnestly that You allow me the privilege of carrying another child, and resuming the love/hate relationship I have with Lovenox.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


On this day in 2009, I would never have guessed how much my life would change in three years. I could not have fathomed two little boys in my near future, I was too blinded by the unexpected grief and sorrow of losing our first child. Sitting in that little ultrasound room, clutching Reed's hand, the pain was suffocating. But through comforting words spoken by my husband, and a treasure trove of truths found in God's word, the Lord graciously softened the harsh blow we'd been given. An ache of longing gnawed at my heart as I later cradled my newborn nephew, born the same day we'd lost our baby. The joy and sadness I felt as I held the tiny baby whose birthday would stand as a memorial to my own special date causes my eyes to swell with tears even now as I type.  I was learning even in that moment how God uses trials for our growth and for His glory. My little ring with the March birthstone serves as a reminder to me that God is faithful even when the pain is suffocating. He is never surprised when things don't go the way we planned. He has been faithful to restore our joy many, many times over.

Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning. 
Psalm 30:5

You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness...
 Psalm 30:11

While Abel noisily played in the living room with a few of his friends this morning, I stood there next to our little brown bassinet, rocking my fussy baby to sleep. I breathed in deeply of his new baby smell as I smoothed the soft fuzz on top of the little head cradled in my arms. In that moment, I was overwhelmed with gratitude for this undeserved blessing of another son.
My heart caught in my throat as I remembered the days Reed and I thought we had lost him, 9 weeks into my pregnancy. I cried out to God in those few days before an ultrasound confirmed a heartbeat, praying for God to reconcile what I knew to be true about His character and the fear that was lurking beneath my confidence. I held sweet Micah a little closer this morning as I recalled my struggle with placing all of my hope and trust in God's faithfulness to bring Himself glory through every circumstance, and to care for me personally through any trial. Reed had held me steady as I wavered, reminding me of how God had been faithful before, and of the rich closeness we share with each other and with God because He cared for us in our suffering. Reed repeated these truths to me every time the fear would resurface throughout my high risk pregnancy, directing me to follow after God's desire for our lives and to push away the distractions of fear and my own desires.

...fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
 Isaiah 41:10

For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you. 
Isaiah 41:13

While I continued to rock him, Micah sighed the little sigh that babies do, his eyes closed sweetly in sleep. He nestled against me, warm and safe, unaware of any distractions. I love being a Mama with everything in me, and I think that it's amazing how God uses our experiences as parents (and the pursuit of children) to mature our faith.  I am so thankful that our heavenly Father protects us, comforts us, forgives us when we sin, and provides us with opportunities to grow. He is faithful.

As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you...
Isaiah 66:13

Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you.
Isaiah 49:15

Monday, March 12, 2012

Reclaiming Adoption

I have been working on reading Reclaiming Adoption for a while now.  For the past few months, I haven't taken the time to read that I usually like to. I've found that my practice of and love for reading often comes in cycles throughout my life. Tearing thorough several books a week some months, then hitting a slump and not reading much at all for a few months. 
Anyways, I've been enjoying this slim little book even though I don't pick it up too often. Reclaiming Adoption is primarily about the spiritual aspect of God's adoption of believers, the once wayward sons He has chosen to bring into His eternal family through the sacrifice of His beloved son Jesus. 
While reading reviews of this book, one in particular caught my eye. Sally Lloyd-Jones is the author of my personal favorite children's storybook Bible: The Jesus Story Book Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name.
She says:
“Adoption isn’t limited to child-placement, it’s not just for a few and it isn’t plan B. Adoption is at the very center of the Story of Redemption–and of the heart of God. We were all orphans without a home or hope in this world and God brought us into his family and gave us his name. Reclaiming Adoption: Missional Living Through the Rediscovery of Abba Father is a thoughtful, inspiring and moving call to understand the wonderful truth: adoption, far from being plan b, is in fact plan A+ with God.” (Emphasis mine)
Praise our sovereign God that He planned on rescuing his wayward, rebellious, and sinful children from the beginning! There is no 'plan B' with God.