Thursday, March 31, 2011

Simple

A new day after a real night of sleep.  Of course, Jacob woke up as Crankosaurus Rex this morning…so…I couldn’t wait until he was on with his day too. 

Today, I am perusing websites to gain craft ideas and sewing patterns from.  I got Granma’s sewing/tackle box out and am going to sort through to see what is worth keeping and what needs to go or be donated. 

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I am also quite pleased with a little cutesy I found at Yankee candle store in Des Moines a couple weeks ago….

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As I walked through the front living room, my eyes rested a moment on this..

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…just look at them, collecting dust.  Sad smile Well, wine gets better with age, just like me.  Open-mouthed smile

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Claims staked!

Wow….I just had a great visual picture this morning of how I’m supposed to feel about life, instead of drudging through the muck and mire.  If you remember, a couple weeks ago I posted about NOT going through the muck and mire.  Ah well….I’m a late-bloomer.  I had the visual that I’m a pioneer, in the blood line I come from.  I’m on a path, no one, in my family has ever been on…a path to happiness and fulfillment within the bounds of family and beyond! These have been my heart’s desires. Here are some visuals for you: 

I’m trying to figure out how to upload the scan of our 7 week ultrasound of Sweet Pea.  I used nicknames for each of my babies.  Jacob was Peanut.  Levi was Sugar Bean. This precious one is Sweet Pea.  Jacob loves that his nickname was Peanut.  He giggles and giggles at that.  I’ll edit this post as soon as I get it figured out how to put my Sweet Pea on here.  But here are a few of my favorites of my Husband, some with me and some with Jacob and some all by himself.

 

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This was his first day of new job, as Independence’s City Manager

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Mother’s Day 2010

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Later, Mother’s Day 2010

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Enjoying a home-cranked Blizzard with Jacob

Sweet Pea 7 weeks

I’m not gonna lie, I keep wanting to say “she”.  However, I’m not 100% confident of my intuition, so I will say here he or she is.  =D  And we love them so much already.  Here, Sweet Pea is 7 1/2 weeks.  That was 3 weeks ago already!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Well, bust my buttons!

I just want to make a public announcement that my belly bands are on the way and I cannot friggin' wait! For those who don't know what a belly band is - it's a piece of stretchy fabric a woman wears over her waist line and top of her unbuttoned pants, instead of wearing maternity pants. I've lost 3 of the 11 lbs. I've gained since Christmas.  Funny thing about wearing sweat pants and yoga pants during the day, most days, is that when I went to put on a pair of jeans, today, I could not zip them.  Bummer!  I instantly clobbered myself, mentally, "Beth!  You can't go backwards!"  Next thought, "Oh ya...I got a baby in there."  I will say, that with Jacob and Levi's pregnancies - my ass actually got smaller.  NOT this time around.  I'm waiting for when my mother in law sees me, cuz some pleasant woman told her when she was expecting hubby's sister, that since her backside was so big, it was a girl.  :-O  My MIL would not say it that way to me, but it will be interesting to get her opinion on my matter.  ;) Weird thing with me and pregnancy...I take all those things as a compliment.  I read posts and blogs and etiquette on the pregnancy websites and women get so upset about that stuff.  I don't know why those things have never bugged me.  When my sister was pregnant with my first nephew, an old woman said something about her butt getting so big cuz she was carrying that baby in her backside.  Ahhhh...the comfort of women whom have all been here before us.  ;) 
Anyway, I needed to go grocery shopping today.  It was not fun with my britches falling down and being afraid every time I bent over the cart if I had "coin slot" showing or not.  All I knew is I couldn't zip them...and it was a risk of being inappropriate whether I wore my yoga pants or if I was showing coin slot. After I was at walmart and saw a chick in her early 20s with too tight of a shirt, a muffin-top, and showing her own coin slot because of low ride jeans....I was at ease.  At least I have a reason!  LOL - that's my rationale anyway.  ;)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Missing you

Levi Matthew – I woke up sad this morning.  That hasn’t happened, in some time now.  My nightstand is filled with all the cards and mementos I have kept, from finding out we were expecting you to when we lost you.  Thank you for putting in a word with God to send us a new bundle of joy and hope and dreams…and I miss YOU.  Jacob is excited about this new life.  He tells me, at this point, he wants and thinks the baby is a girl.  Then, he wants a baby brother after her.  He will randomly blurt out, “I miss Levi.”  I think Jacob has a crush on a girl from preschool, because she’s pretty, “wears beautiful dresses”, and Jacob often mentions that she has a baby brother named Levi.  Last night, Jacob insisted he felt this new brother or sister, in my tummy.  Then he proclaimed, “This baby won’t die!”  Your big brother does not realize the power and innocence of his words.  I do not fear losing this little one.  I get really upset that we won’t know you the way we wanted to.  I have learned so much and am learning so much after losing you – and I am grateful for that.  It’s only sometimes that I feel truly robbed and cheated.  This morning is one of those times. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Granma's Banana Bread

I had bananas which had turned "brown and yucky" [thank you, Sid the Science Kid], so I pulled out my Granma's banana bread recipe.  She wrote it down for me on June 11, 2005.  This is the standard banana bread recipe used, from my side of the family. 

3 ripe bananas [mashed]
1 1/4 c. sugar
2 T. salad dressing [miracle whip]
2 T. orange juice
1 T. salad oil
1 egg
1/2 c. sweet milk
2 c. flour + 1 t.baking soda

Mix it all together and bake 1 hour at 350 degrees.

We had this last night for dessert.  It was extra warm and special - as I reflected on my Granma's personality.  I woke up this morning with the delicious aroma lingering, in the air.  As I enjoyed a thick slice, last night, I sat at our table and was so grateful for having memories of her, in our new home.  Granma isn't well.  She's the only grandma I've ever known.  Sometimes, and the past week, is one of these times, I wish I could stop life from evolving so much.  I can't.In July of 1985, when I was 8 years old, Granma told me about having a relationship with Jesus, and that night, I chose God and his Son, in the room I always stayed in at Granma's house.  I woke up and told Granma about my action.  She was beaming with joy. In 7th grade, I wrote a paper about it for an english class. I didn't keep the paper.  I have the memory of an " A" across the top left corner of it, and a note from my gruff, male teacher that read, "Inspiring."  I was nervous about that paper...because I thought it would be too religious. 
I don't know how much longer Granma has, here.  She lives in Pennsylvania and I live in Iowa.  We are not at liberty to make a trip out there this moment - and it's not been easy to feel like I'm the definition of the cliche, "the road to hell is paved with good intentions."  But that is how I feel.  It will pass, as all realities of inadequacies do.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Guard or Hard?

The past 10 days have been a real test. When the time is right, I will expound on what the test has been.  The important part – this morning, after another heartbreak, [incase anyone is worrying or jumping to conclusions about my health or my Sweet Pea – we are perfectly fine.] Sun has struck my soul and my spirit is in in control again. 

I was faced with the question this morning, “Do I guard my heart or do I just flippin’ go ape shit on these morons and harden it and recount every rejection, every hurt, every hole they have bore into my soul?”  Hmmm…given the way I just channeled the emotion, that’s a rather large indicator to choose to NOT do that.  It doesn’t make it easy to weed through- in the pursuit of wisdom, freedom and truth.  And then, just like Gandalf’s staff in Return of the King, as he goes out to offer protection to the returning soldiers of Gondor, from the hoards of hellish Mordor, getting ready to march on Gondor – a blazing flash of light pierced my mind and a totally different thought entered my head.  One that offered peace and complete retreat of all the darkness and offense that was fighting pretty hard to keep me “stuck”.

I thank Jesus for being that beacon – Greater is He that is in me, than He that is in the world. We are more than souls.  Our souls are like the d├ęcor to where our spirit resides.  I will not decorate with concrete blocks and iron bars.  I love you God. 

Monday, March 21, 2011

Don’t get caught up in the mire and muck…

 

I am trying to figure out what this Windows Live Writer is….I am very confused.  I feel there is too much technology, which I haven’t kept up with.  I feel I have great tools, at my fingertips that wouldn’t cost me anything to accomplish much with – but I also get very overwhelmed with so many options and buttons and sparklies.  It is times like these, I truly ask God, “Why did you create me for such a time as this?” 

There are many things I could write and update you on.  I am just at a place, in my life, where I’m not interested in sharing details, broadly.  Sometimes, it is out of fear – fear of exposing myself to criticism and judgment or gossip.  Sometimes, it is to guard my heart and now the life growing inside of me, by not blabbing so much.  Sometimes, it is because, so many things are disturbing, within extended family; friends; our community; our nation; other nations and it all drains me greatly.  I just can’t afford to allow my physical health to get so caught up in all the stimulation.  Sometimes, I feel guilt that I’m doing family or friends an injustice by not becoming totally engaged in their problems or habits.  But several things have been made clear to me over the course of my life and truly just the past 3-4 years. 

  • People – even those we love so much and we know love us so much – can not fix the problems that are ours and ours alone. 
  • There truly are hard times, that we endure alone, as individuals, married or single, there are struggles that are for the strengthening of the individual.
  • In general, people don’t care about all the problems we have.  They only find it interesting when they see positive results coming from the problem – or when we actually solve our problems. 

I am learning that the things I feel impassioned for, do not require any further action, than prayer.  Sometimes, I run a gamut of emotions for issues.  I instantly feel inferior and what can I do to “fix” this?  I can pray. I must not underestimate the undeniable energy and powers that are tangible, even if they are invisible, when I focus on my Creator and become a conduit of His healing powers or wisdom, through prayer.

My son said to me last week, “God lives in Heaven.” I looked deep, in his big, blue eyes and said, “Jacob, God lives in YOU.   He breathed His life into us.  He’s so close to us, He’s IN us.”  Judging by how my son’s eyes sparkled, he “got” it.  I pray for child-like faith for all of us. 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Blade of Grass

I have a new quote that is my favorite:

"Every blade of grass has its Angel that bends over it and whispers, "Grow, grow."
-The Talmud

I think of this quote this way:  Blade of Grass is our new life growing inside of me, and I'm the Angel.  I've been whispering, "Grow, grow.", since 6 weeks ago.  Levi's due date was closer and closer and there was this window of pure hope.  I just knew - without confidence - that our next baby was on the brink of showing up.  I was cautious to hope.  I was trying hard to believe, to have faith - but really, just kept saying "Please." and "Thank You!" to our Maker. Finally, when I could take the waiting game no more.  I called my G.P. to order a blood test at our local hospital.  We were 3 weeks and 5 days expecting...I mean our little embryo had burrowed in, that morning, probably!  LOL  =D  That was Valentine's weekend.  The next weekend was Levi's due date - it came and it went.  I felt kind of numb, but no great torrential downpour of tears came.  Until....last Tuesday for our first ultrasound with our new Sweet Pea.  Nothing prepared me for how hard it was to feel like moving on and moving on without Levi Matthew, by seeing this new sibling, where he lived just 5 months ago.  But, as grief does, it comes and I had to deal with it.  Since last Wednesday, joy has returned for this new baby.  I bloated horribly weeks 5-7...so bad, that I looked like I was 16 weeks instead.  I discovered Bragg organic Apple Cider Vinegar, had a dose of that and the next morning, was back to having normal rolls.  ;)  I have the appetite of a Gladiator.  No real nausea past week 6.  Need a nap almost every afternoon. I've gained 11 lbs. of the 33 I've lost and I'm not going to worry about it.  I cannot have both of my goals of losing 60lbs. this year AND a new baby.  I'll take the new baby! The only food aversions I have are spaghetti sauce and sausage and wheat bread.  I have been drinking a lot of milk - I crave it crazily. 
Jacob has been such a sweetheart.  A couple of weeks ago, we were on the way to meet his grandma.  We hadn't been telling people about our news at that time.  I reminded him he needed to try and keep a secret for us about the baby still.  "Awwwww.....Why mom??"  "Because, we just want the baby to grow a little bigger in my tummy."  Jacob smacked his arms down on his lap, threw his head to the side - looking out the car window and said, "Awww man.  We have to start all over again!"  Out of the mouth of babes.  He voiced what I was secretly thinking and it forced me to deal instantly, which I did and we continued on.  He's such a smart boy.  He is excited to be a big brother.  =D  He thinks it will be a girl.  We'll find out in another 12 weeks. 

I want to say to you, my readers - YOU have blessed me immeasurably.  Thank you for your love, your prayers, your encouraging words, your gifts.  Thank you for not judging a mother's grief and letting me share it with you.  I love you. 

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Hold on to your butts....

I have been sitting down, intending to blog for the past week, and feel like I have nothing of interest to share.  Therefore, I'll share some cool highlights from my week. 

*The mayor told me I look like a teeny-bopper.  Ten years ago, this comment would have bugged me.  Now?  I think it's awesome and I hope I get that kind of comment in another 10 years!  I told him it was Mary Kay products.  ;) 
*I attended a grant-writing workshop.  It was a 2 day event, hosted by our Iowa State extension office.  Our extension person received a grant to do this training.  Therefore, there was no cost to attendees.  !!!!!  It was quite informative.  I am digesting the information and trying to focus on one vision, instead of 17 different ones for a businesses, programs, school, community and trails.  I left feeling empowered.  It's been a long time, since I was in a classroom setting.  I was befuddled by the battle, in my mind. Surprise, surprise - my answers to questions were not in agreement with the general population of the classroom, when we would be asked to stand for one of two answers.  Know what?  I was right approximately 90% of the time.  I learned a lot, and it was an excellent confidence builder, for me.  I'm a SAHM.  I do not have a college education. I am still pretty smart.  It was good to be challenged and to feel like I "passed".  Of course, now, it's time to put my new knowledge to practice.  I'll keep you posted. 
*Jacob told me that I'm a "good mommy". 
*I got to watch the Oscars. 
*We have a family that is going to rent the house in Monona. !!!!  They are willing to rent-to-own.  This process will take a year and we are hoping this will work greatly for them and us! 
*We're on a countdown until tomorrow afternoon, when Daddy starts vacation time!  T-30 hours and 10 minutes.  Booyah!

Enthralling, isn't it?  :) Did ya hold on?