>> Monday, December 22, 2008
I got back late last night from L.A. and am trying to catch up with life and Advent and getting ready for Christmas. So until I have more time to sit and share my own thoughts, enjoy some well-spoken thoughts of others that I think are worth your time.
Making Babywearing Work for You- an honest, balanced assessment
Saving Holiday Memories- a really cool idea that I think I may try to start this year
This Father is Not a Mother- a dad's take on attachment parenting
I know there are more...but my baby is starting to cry and is in need of the boob....
P.S.~I am reading a book that has the potential to really impact how I live my life and the decisions I make about a while lot of things..... have I peaked your interest? More to come soon. I have to read more first...
>> Wednesday, December 17, 2008
My parents both told me that everyone would understand if I didn't make it to California for the funeral. It is a week until Christmas and I have a 4month old. But I feel the need to go. Not really to see my family, though that will be nice. Not to make an appearance. I am going to validate a relationship that is significant to me, to my boys. I am going as my way of saying that I loved her deeply and treasured her role, even if somewhat limited, in my life. I am going because she was my grandmother, a woman who I am forever connected to and thus my boys are too.
I grew up a bit today. She is my history, a piece of my heritage. And I will miss her. I already do.
Even though Advent/Christmas is my favorite time of year and I am a HUGE gift-giver (as in I really like to, not I give ginormous gifts), I commited a Christmas-gift cardinal sin this week. I blame my mom, really, and I don't even think she'll argue with me. I bought my own Christmas gift from my parents... and then started to use it. **gasp** Now that I think about it, Hubby did the same thing a couple weeks ago with his iPhone so maybe it isn't so much of a Christmas no-no as I thought. My family does this sort of thing all the time. I know what I want better than anyone so why not let me buy my own gift? Well, it takes some of the spirit/fun out of it, which is a bummer. But I had been lusting after this particular gift for awhile and I couldn't wait any longer.
Without further ado... my very excellent Christmas present.. a Beco Butterfly! Hooray!! So far, it is fabulous. Although I have other carriers that I can use for back carries (ring sling, mei tai, wrap, ergo), I wanted this particular carrier due some features that make it unique and really great for back carries with smaller babies. It has an infant insert that clips around baby to make the leg opening smaller and keep their little bodies from shifting in the big carrier. Also, it has an awesome feature (shown at right) that allows you to secure baby in the carrier before you put the carrier on. In this picture, Caden is already clipped in and all I had to do was pick up my Beco by the shoulder straps, put it on like a backpack then buckle the waist belt and adjust everything so it felt comfortable. Voila! Little baby securely in a soft structured carrier with NO help! Hooray!
Caden seems to really like it. As you can see, he looks pretty comfortable. :) He slept on my back like that for over 2hours the other day! No exaggeration! And my back was fine- no soreness or pain at all. I could feel it the first time I put it on. My back muscles were a bit sore but I think it is because I mostly use my ring sling and the Beco uses different muscles that weren't accustumed to the weight. Also, in this picture, he looks a little low. I had him up a little higher today and that seemed to help. It is good to rotate which muscles get the babywearing work-out anyway. :)
I purchased my Beco from this great website Tender Cargo (www.tendercargo.com). They have a great selection of carriers and other cool baby things. You should check them out. Their stuff is great and the service was great too.
>> Sunday, December 14, 2008
Lucas (above) and Caden (below), both at 4months old... Do they look alike to you? I see these pictures and see such different little guys but yet they look more alike than I realized. What do you think? I'd love to know!
>> Thursday, December 11, 2008
I have always been one easily moved by moments/songs/memories where I can sense something bigger than what is on the surface. I am a deeply emotional person, as are most women I guess. I cry during the National Anthem because of all it represents to me, all the people I know as a military kid who have sacrificed so much. I seem to cry a lot during worship when the reality of the words on my lips overpowers my soul. I tear up a lot this time of year because the beauty of the season (the lights, the carols, the traditions, ...) really touches me. I think about Mary and her journey to motherhood. I think about the deep, deep significance of Christ humbly coming to earth as a baby to save all people. But mostly, I get very emotional when I find myself in the midst of a moment with my loved ones, my boys... a moment where time seems to stand still and I am struck with the "big-ness" of life.
>> Tuesday, December 9, 2008
>> Monday, December 8, 2008
Since I want to share this Advent season with y'all but am trying to be a bit more present with my family (instead of in 50-million different places), I am taking the easy route and letting someone else talk about Advent for me. This is a post written last year by one of my dearest friends where she shares some really awesome ideas for how to make Advent meaningful for your whole family, including the little ones. I hope you enjoy this post as much as I did. (Additional thoughts from me in italics.)
>> Sunday, December 7, 2008
One of the things I am most concerned with this Advent season, in addition to teaching Lucas about the true spirit of Advent and Christmas, is to begin to establish family traditions that my boys will cherish and look forward to in the years to come. That motivation is behind almost all the decisions Hubby and I have made regarding activities and plans for this season. It is why we decided not to travel anywhere this year (that and the massive airport crowds this time of year). It is behind the books we are reading and the activities we have done so far to begin to teach Lucas what it means to prepare for Christ's birth and celebrate the waiting.
Every night, we accompany Benjamin Bear as he follows the star and journeys to see baby Jesus. Lucas is really into chapter books lately (the young reader books where there are less pictures and way more words) so this has been a special treat for him. This book is set up so each night's story is a new adventure for Benjamin until he finally reaches baby Jesus on Christmas Eve. There is also a little mini lesson (ie: faith can move mountains, God answers us when we call to Him, God forgives us when we are sorry, ...) at the end of each story. But the best part... every night he asks to keep reading. "Let's read one more!" And here is where we get to teach about the waiting, the anticipation. These are usually not a toddler's strong points, so I do let him look through the pages to see what stories are coming. I think that is part of building the anticipation. But he is learning, one story each night, and he gets excited when it is time to find out who Benjamin Bear meets next on his journey.
>> Saturday, December 6, 2008
We are moments away from a gut-wrenching exercise in mommy keeping her cool in front of my boys- AKA: the SEC Championship. I get nervous for my Gators, so nervous I want to throw up. You may think it is silly to get so emotional and passionate about a football game. But my blood runs orange and blue and I want my Gators to dominate!! So, here are my little Tebow's to wish the Gators good luck and say GO GATORS!!! BEAT BAMA!!!
>> Wednesday, December 3, 2008
As we prepare for Christmas and gift giving, here are some great websites and giveaways for you to check out.
LOTS of great giveaways at A Child Chosen!!
I just entered to win the Playskool Helmet Heros, although now I am not totally sure I want to win! Just one more reason for Lucas to run crazy around our house. He would love it though.
Marcie at A Child Chosen has really outdone herself... check out all these great giveaways ending December 7th.
OneBookTwoBook is giving away a great book to help you be creative with your family. I LOVE to do crafts with Lucas and find new ways to entertain him. I am putting this book on my list for sure!
>> Tuesday, December 2, 2008
As soon as the snow began to fall on Sunday afternoon, Lucas started begging to make a snowman. I promised him that during Caden's morning nap on Monday we would play out in the snow. So we did. It was so fun to be outside and not so cooped up. We made snow angels and attempted a snowman but Lucas kept knocking it down so we didn't get very far. As he sat in the snow, I asked him to sing a song about snow. He started singing "Jingle Bells" but got a little distracted about half way through. Maybe Hubby and I are the only ones who will find this video funny, but it is too cute not share (chubby cheeks in a winter hat... always good for a smile!). Watch his facial expression change 1/2 way through as he is trying to sing the song but also satisfy his curiosity. He is such an amazing, adorable yet sometimes exasperating child.
Did you see it? Did you laugh? :)
I know I am behind the curve on the whole Advent thing. But I do have some posts lined up for this week on how we are celebrating and some tips for you too. Right now I have to fold the multiple loads of laundry I did at 2am after Lucas threw up several times. Oh, motherhood. :)