Monday, September 28, 2009

Telephone Poles!

I need my telephone pole! I heard a speaker many years ago, explain our prayer life in terms of telephone poles. He said that just as each telephone pole is connected to the next one in line by the wires, we need to view our prayer life in that way, to know when our next pole is, to know when we will be praying, meeting God next. It is taking that time to have a very important appointment with God and to know when that appointment is, every day.

When I had the baby, I lost my telephone poles. I am awakened by the baby, who immediately needs to be changed and fed, so, my morning prayer time is, well, different now (non-existant). Yes, my duties can be a prayer (if I let them be) but I still need those appointments, or those telephone poles connecting me to God. "Our hearts are restless until they rest with God". Imagine our hearts without God, without the interaction. I think that is where all the anxiety came from last week, along with, a huge lack of sleep, crazy hormones, which cause havoc with my type 1 diabetes too, and my perfectionistic goals that really are just not do-able right now. I think the one month mark is a hard time, we, as mothers want to be normal again, but we are not yet. Our bodies and minds are not ready to.

Thank you all so very much for your supportive comments and prayers. You are such a blessing. When I wrote the post, I really wasn't thinking about comments (for once) but thinking about just getting my feelings out of my jumbled up mind and day. Your comments were all so helpful. I especially loved the one about praying the St Michael the Archangel prayer and hugging each child afterward, because, let's face it, I believe it really does boil down to the devil attacking our motherhood. Attacking the heart of the home. He does not want us to be happy and successful in bringing up holy children.

I am going to take off a couple more weeks of schooling. I am trying to enjoy just having the time off now. I have these goals of finishing school in May, but who cares if we go into June? I also think I need to re-think our daily schedule, the goal of trying to finish school before lunch (even if lunch is 2pm) is just unrealistic. We need to extend our school day, maybe 10-3 for now.

The reason I get so frustrated when I even think about not homeschooling, is because there is no other option for us. If you are a homeschooler, you understand this thinking, you know our reasons for homeschooling and it is the best alternative for us and I truly am called to do this. That does not mean it is easy. I know it calls for sacrifice, but that does not mean I like it. Sometimes the will of God is hard and we, like children fight it and without our next telephone pole, connecting us to Him, for guidance and strength, it's hard to get through the day without struggling. The benefits of homeschooling really do far outweigh the negatives, but it boils down to a lot of sacrifice.

Grace is needed. Grace received from prayer. Grace received from those telephone poles.
Yes, we receive many needed graces from the Sacraments, but speaking to God and allowing Him to speak to us is needed. Telephone poles are needed.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Weighing Life

I don't even know what to call this post. I've had it all jumbled up in my mind all day. Driving me crazy. I'm on the edge of tears all day. Yet, look at those beautiful little feet and the arm holding those little feet is attached to a wonderful little girl, who has 2 more wonderful little sisters and a wonderful big brother. Blessings.

 Blessings of a faith I will never let go of. A husband God has, in His mercy given to me. We have a big home, money for food and never go hungry or cold. SO many blessings.
SO why am I ready to cry all the time? Why am I a "screaming Mama"? Why am I not happy right now? Why am I crying right now?
I said it today. (outloud too, to the kids) I hate homeschooling. (at least right now I do) I hate that my little ones don't get the attention I'd love to give them. I hate that I can't get up and dressed and ready for school by 9am. (it's more like 10 am before we even eat breakfast) I hate settling fights all day. I hate constantly telling the school kids to "stop bugging" eachother. (during school) I hate not having time to do the things I'd like to do. I could clean during the day, I hate having a messy house, I could do laundry, (that is so piled up and behind right now, I used to do laundry at night, but now Sweetie Pie eats constantly from about now until 1am) I could plan Baptism meals and have the time to buy groceries and prepare things ahead of time. (I think I'm just going to do cold croissant sandwiches, heck, I have no time to look up recipes for taco meat or Baptism cake recipes, it's going to have to be simple, when will I shop for all this stuff?)

 Heck, I think we could even eat supper at a reasonable time if I didn't homeschool. I would maybe be a "happy Mama" if I didn't homeschool. I could go to garage sales and any store with only 2 kids in tow. I could go to the library without it being a major ordeal just to get everyone to come when it is time to leave the library. I wouldn't have to worry about what to make for lunch, heck, the big kids would have school lunch every day, think of the variety they'd get!! I would have time to think. I know their teacher would have much more patience than I have.
I don't want my kids remembering mom being crabby all the time. I want them to think being a mother is wonderful and the true gift that it is. (it really is a gift and a blessing)
Am I having "baby blues"? I feel so helpless and hopeless. I maybe need more sleep? I know our reasons for homeschooling are wonderful and my reasons for NOT homeschooling are completely selfish. Really, they are all reasons for ME. Me, me, me.
There are so many perfect, happy, homeschooling mamas out there. How do you do it? How do you not always feel like you are "trying to catch up" with life? You perfect homeschooling mamas, you know who you are!

 When I think of the alternative, any alternative, I don't want anything else. I only want this. SO why is it SO hard? Why do I hate so many things?
This is such a negative post, and I'll probably delete it, but I just had to get my jumbled up feelings out there and on paper (or computer in this case) to sort through them, to pray about them. To remember my blessings.
To weigh life right now.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

First Day Back to School!

(What is up with Blogger? All my pictures are appearing blurry, but they are not blurry in my files) Anyway,
Our first day back to school did not go so well. Sweetie Pie decided not to take any naps without being in Mama's arms...if she was put down for a little while, Babycakes quickly went over to "I'm just kissin' her!" Already, Sweetie pretty much does what she is doing in the picture when Babycakes comes near!! Poor Babycakes, (not really) she does not mind at all and still wants/begs to hold her, even if she is screaming. Babycakes was on "time out" (locked in the high chair where there is no escaping) at least 4 times during school and I tried "nice mommy" and "screaming mama" (the latter, was no effort at all on my part)
Our fridge conked out, so everything was taken out to the garage fridge, where 7 milks were...we had to throw away all leftovers and anything that was opened, as we just don't have the room in the extra fridge, but counting blessings, we are thankful we have the extra fridge!
Quick question: Will these condiments still be good if not refrigerated even after they were opened? We left apples and onions in and Diet Coke and Slim Fast...yes, I'm resorting to Slim Fast, as it seems like I have not time to eat these days...I had the thought yesterday to find my Weight Watchers Points sheet, but then the thought went away with all the other lost thoughts I have every day and do not find the time to do!

Today is a new day and our fridge only needs a fan, that needs to be ordered from the Cities, so we will only be out our fridge for about a week, hopefully. Babycakes was better today, and Sweetie Pie is napping in my front pack right now as I type with arms outstretched!
But, the really good news is "Screaming Mama" is not around today...she knows sometimes there are days like these... and hey, the fridge needed cleaning anyway...

BMX Racing!

Jedi's new sport!
We are now a BMX Racing family! Jedi signed up Saturday, had practice and raced his first 2 races on Sunday. They let the new kids use paper plates for their numbers and borrowed them helmets.

Oh, how I wish we could all bike on these cool paths!! Don't they look fun?
Go Jedi! Go!
Now, every Saturday his practices are the same time as Ballerina Rosie's Soccer games and his races are every Sunday. The good thing is we can go as often as we want, or as little as we want, they are really flexible that way, so they sign up for each race when they get there.

Apple Art

The second picture with the blue background, (I forgot to take a close up picture) is ripped art. The kids rip the tree trunk, the green "circle" and red "apple" pieces and glue it together.
This is painted with a bath scrubbie and a round sponge painter and either painted trunk or construction paper trunk or painted.

This is a painted arm and hand (Babycakes did 3 or 4 of them-she loves to paint her whole arm) and with a sponge painter do the leaves and either the child's finger for the apples or a bingo dabber. The child can also draw a tree with a crayon and bingo dab the apples just for a simpler project.
Real apple painting. We start with halves and cut it into quarters. They really turn out nice. Last year, we painted with apples, using white paint on red paper, those were really nice too!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Our Favorite Book Comes to Life!

She also sprayed all the back windows, inside the open screen door, the trampoline and anyone who came within 20 feet of her! (this morning)
"This kid is driving me CRAZY!"
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my Babycakes you'll be!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Our Lady of Sorrows

This year, we (I) did not get my act together enough to celebrate the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, like last year,(looking back, wow! I had a lot of energy and did do a lot...) but we did celebrate Our Lady of Sorrows yesterday! (yay for me!) Really, it was a major accomplishment to make brownies in my tiny spare time, holding the babe in my front pack! I got the idea of putting pretzels in the heart shape cake (brownies) from Barbara.

We also did do the 7 almonds, which represent 7 tears. (tear shaped nut) Picture 4 kiddos putting these nuts under their eyes to pretend they are tears....The coloring sheet was from Mathilda.

The Blessed Virgin told St Bridget of the seven graces given to all who honor her daily by saying seven Hail Mary's and meditating on her tears and dolors.

Here are the seven graces:
  1. I will grant peace to their families.
  2. They will be enlightened about the divine mysteries.
  3. I will console them in their pains and I will accompany them in their work.
  4. I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of my divine Son or the sanctification of their souls.
  5. I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives.
  6. I will visibly help them at the moment of their death, they will see the face of their Mother.
  7. I have obtained (This Grace) from my divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolors, will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son and I will be their eternal consolation and joy.
Seven Sorrows
  1. The prophecy of Simeon.
  2. The flight into Egypt.
  3. The loss of the Child Jesus in the temple.
  4. The meeting of Jesus and Mary on the Way of the Cross.
  5. The Crucifixion.
  6. The taking down of the Body of Christ from the Cross.
  7. The burial of Jesus.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

C-Section Nursing

****Warning****I don't think any men read my blog, but if you do, you might not want to read this one about nursing, and female stuff like that!!

Nursing is one of those gifts that I so look forward to with each baby. I enjoy the time I get with each baby, the feeling of feeding my baby and some usefulness for these large things that I was given.

One thing I always forget, is with c-sections, it takes 4 days for my milk to come in. I guess the average time is 3-4 days for c-sections. So, by the time I leave the hospital, the baby is fussy, and rightfully so, she is losing weight and basically I'm starving her. By the 3rd night, the nurses are wanting to supplement the baby and I'm in tears. I feel called to nurse and I know once the milk comes in, it all gets better, but until then, it is so hard.

With Sweetie Pie, the 3rd night, I decided to pump and got enough colostrum to supplement her and continued to pump every 2 hours, both breasts. By the time we left the hospital, she was down to 6lbs 6oz, from her birth weight of 7lb 1oz. My milk came in sometime Thursday in the wee hours (she was born Monday night) I was feeding her and pumping every 2 hours, to supplement, to make sure she got enough. We had a "one-day after leaving hospital appointment" to check her weight, thank goodness she had gained 2 ounces. Big sigh of relief, as I said, once my milk came in, I knew it would be fine.

Sweetie Pie had her 2 week appt on this past Friday and had gotten back to her birth weight of 7lbs 1oz, so another big sigh of relief.

Nursing is hard though, She is so tiny and has a hard time sucking out my nipples, so I use a nipple shield that is a soft rubber like thing that goes on my breast and she sucks the nipple out and gets milk. Sometimes I use it and sometimes I try to do it without it, if she can latch on, I don't use it, if she has a hard time, I use the shield.. I try to do both, but when they are this small, those darn nipples get so sore, it's hard to even hug anyone. It is so painful once she latches on, that it is eye cringing, toe curling pain the whole time she sucks!!! That pain only lasts a month or 6 weeks or so...if I'm remembering right and then it gets better! Once the baby is bigger, things go much better.

I am just writing this to I guess explain c-section nursing. The surgery slows down the body and since the body has not gone through labor, all of a sudden a few days after the baby has been taken out, the body kind of says "Hey, there's no baby, we better make milk!" The meds and just the healing process slows down everything. (including pooping...tmi?)

Note to self: Next baby, start pumping the 2nd day!!! Maybe my milk will come in sooner!
Another note to self: Next baby, maybe start pumping before the c-section (assuming baby won't go early like this one) like maybe a day or 2 before....just a thought to get things moving faster. (a nurse suggested this one...I don't know though...)

I don't really have much point to this post I guess, just things I've wanted to post since I was in the hospital!! If anyone out there reads this and ends up having a c-section, don't give up on nursing. It can work, just not without a little hard work and tears from mama!

In the end, it's all worth it!
I am in no way saying people who don't nurse are doing anything wrong, I'm just talking about my situation and my determination to use these giant things God gave me, it gives them purpose somehow in my mind!

Monday, September 14, 2009

We Did It!

We saved enough birthday, allowances and change jar money to buy one of these great jumping things!!
Here's Jedi patiently waiting his turn.
Sometimes we allow 2 at a time, but usually it ends up only one person per time and a whole set of new rules, like:

No sitting on the edge
No sitting underneath
No putting rocks on the trampoline
No putting sand on the trampoline
No jumping on your sister
No pushing your brother
OK, back to one child only!
No water bottles while jumping
No, girls cannot take off their shirts
I know it's not fair, but you cannot do it.
10 minutes each
Your times up
OK, it's your turn.
Yes all these things are said during each 10 minutes....I'm exhausted just typing this...
Yes, it's all worth it, the kiddos are also exhausted and ready for bed about a 1/2 hour earlier than usual, if I could just get supper on earlier....

Friday, September 11, 2009

Homemade Treasures!

My Mother-in-law has talents beyond any imagination that I even can comprehend! She sews Raggedy Ann's for all the girls and I think is working on a Raggedy Andy for a certain boy...
She sewed Sweetie Pie these beautiful PJ's and doll and booties!!

Isn't this doll, just the cutest thing?
These booties are just precious!!
Melissa, sewed me this beautiful nursing shawl to cover up with when nursing in public! (it's sewed with Raggedy material!)
Suzie, sewed me this beautiful, soft, flowery, blanket for Sweetie Pie!
Again, my mother-in-law knit this beautiful back-pack for Mary Hannah!
This is a 4 generation picture of my husband and his mother and grandma. His grandma is 94 and lifts weights to keep her strength up!! She still chopped wood until a few years ago!! She's an amazing, beautiful woman! Tom's birthday is shared with our Blessed Mother's and our goddaughter Eva, on September 8th! (he's 42) Mine is the next day, so it is a whirlwind of phone calls, visits and desserts!! Add a new baby and it was a really crazy couple of days!!
My mom has taken up painting for a hobby the last few years and painted this for Tom and I for our birthdays!
I have no talent, really, I can't sing, I can't dance, I can't even do a cartwheel! I think it is God's way of making me humble. I used to be thin and pretty, God is making me humble. (at least I tell myself that!)
Talented people! Wow, I admire all of you, you are amazing!
(I pictured another homemade gift in the previous post, check it out!)
I was also given a homemade afghan made of beautiful, soft white yarn, made by one of my husband's client's mothers. We are saving it for Baptism at which time I will show pictures of it!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Prayers For Therese!

This beautiful hat was knit by Therese. She is delivering her sweet baby girl today, please pray for a safe, happy delivery for her!
Coming soon, I plan to post all the wonderful home-made treasures Sweetie Pie has received, like this beautiful pink hat! (See even Sweetie Pie likes the hat, she's smiling!)
****update, Therese delivered her sweet baby girl and both are healthy and happy!!!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I'm 40 Today!

Christine came over today, stood in the doorway and said "I'm here to see the old lady!" I said "what are you talking about, she's standing in the doorway!" (she's a year and a half older!)
It was great to see her and she got to hold her goddaughter! She came with a meal, dessert and gifts and 40 cans of Diet Coke! She's the greatest! And she got to hear her baby's heartbeat today!!!
I have a ton of ideas for posting, but no time it seems to post, busy holding my sweet, sweet baby!! So sorry if it's been quiet here on the blog front!

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Best Thing in the World!

Is holding a newborn baby!
Oh, how I wish I could keep her like this forever!

Soft and kissable!
Always hungry!
Always hearing those words "Can I hold her now?" I have to admit, at Mass yesterday, I was a little jealous, I wanted to hold my new baby, but between each child holding her, I really only got a tiny bit of holding time! I can share my favorite thing in the world, because they gave me that same favorite thing at one time too!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Mary Hannah is 5!

Finally 5!! She is the last of the kid birthdays, September 2nd. And she has been waiting and waiting and waiting!!
While I nurse the baby, I love to watch cooking shows and while watching Paula Deen bake a bundt cake, Mary Hannah said "Wow! Look at that giant doughnut!!" SO, we had to make a bundt cake for her birthday, which Grandma helped her bake! Here she is holding her new Wal-Mart fake American doll, which she named Crystal Light. But, she will inform you it's only "Crystal", Light is only her last name. Hmmm...wonder what mom drinks?

She has really changed since the baby has been born, she helps so much and is so loving and wonderful with the baby. She will do anything to get her turn to hold Sweetie Pie! Her cute freckles make her so kissable whether she likes that or not!

Space Aliens for birthday tokens, games and fun!

Sweetie Pie slept through the whole party!

Mary Hannah does have a sense of humor, she is yelling "I'm being electrocuted by an alien, heeeeelp!"

On the Friday before I had the baby, August 21st, we had her birthday party with her friends, as I knew I would not be up to much after the baby. She picked a butterfly theme. She picked all the colors of everything and did not want a theme butterfly cake, she only wanted cupcakes with butterflies on them. She has it all set in her mind.

Butterflies and flowers everywhere!

I was worried she would grab the presents and not remember to thank each child, but she was sooo happy and immediately hugged each girl after opening their present, saying "This is just what I wanted!" It was really precious to watch! She had 3 little friends over and with our 3 girls, well, it was a perfect party!

The girls were the butterflies and sipped nectar out of their flowers!

I forgot to load a picture of the butterfly pinata, our craft, butterfly tatoos and the treasure hunt, but trust me, they were done and they were fun!!


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