Thursday, September 24, 2015

A Typical Week with a Tiny Person

Monday

At the bottom of three flights of stairs with a toddler on your hip, you realize you left your phone upstairs. You pause and turn slowly. "Nah...don't need it."

Tuesday

Just as you are standing to flush the toilet, you realize you are now racing a tiny mutant ninja toddler who is running full steam ahead toward the toilet, arm fully extended, binky in his hand ready for the dunk. He wins.

Wednesday

Remember how meticulously that nice man at the optometrist tweaked and straightened your glasses so they sat perfectly on your face? Now you're just lucky to keep them on your face.

Thursday

Someone can't sleep, so you graciously allow them to cuddle up beside you, assuming you will both slip peacefully back into slumber state and dream for hours...that is until you are jolted awake by the tiny foot that has found its way to your neck.

Friday

In spite of how many exercises and stretches you do, you are absolutely certain you will end up in a back brace before your 30th birthday.

Weekend (!!)

lol

Monday, November 24, 2014

How to Put Baby to Sleep




Putting a baby to sleep often feels like an exercise in futility. Or at least like some sort of a cruel hoax that never seems to end in laughter.

"Look kid. We just went through this last night. And the night before that. You know it's coming. I'm not trying to surprise you with this whole bedtime thing. In fact, I keep it pretty much the same every night."

Some nights the rocking is spot on. Others, you'd think I was doing the single most irksome thing in his little world. Yesterday my singing was soothing. Tonight it is making his ears bleed, and as such an affront, he's left with little choice but to scream over it.

Exhausted from all the protesting, he finally passes out beside me, still doing that little hiccupping thing babies do when they've been crying. A defiant foot keeps kicking off the covers. And I'm left wondering what all the fuss was about. I just don't see how being cuddled, rocked, and sung to sleep could ever be that bad.

Maybe I'm missing something. After all, he has proven to me there are a lot of things I know very little about. Like food, for example. I always thought food was best enjoyed in the mouth, when in reality, it is actually better experienced and appreciated when smeared all over your face and clothing.

This morning he is full of energy and cheer, singing for me the song of his people, so I can only assume I did something right. Perhaps in a few years I'll know what that is and report back.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Avocado, Spinach, Pineapple, Mango, Banana, Chia Seed & Greek Yogurt Smoothie


Well, the title just about says it all for this one. This is by far one of my favorite smoothies. The creamy richness of the avocado, the funky texture of chia seeds, the tangy bite of pineaple - really, what's not to love?







I've been using a Ninja blender for a little under a year, and I have to say that the vast majority of the time, I am in love with this blender. Gone are the days of non-blended smoothies and ice chunks getting stunk under the blades threatening to ruin the motor. Now, we have blades on blades and thick, creamy smoothies every time. The only challenge I've had so far with this blender is getting dates blended to perfection. It hasn't been a huge issue, though, and I don't use them enough for this to be a sticking point.





Ingredients:
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • Handful of spinach (I usually pack my blender with spinach, but this was all I had left)
  • Frozen pineapple (or fresh if in season)
  • Frozen mango (or fresh if in season)
  • 1/2 ripe banana (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • (Optional) Fat free vanilla greek yogurt (with the avocado and banana, this really isn't necessary, unless you want a little added protein)
Instructions:
  • Combine all ingredients, placing your lighter ingredients (such as spinach or other leafy greens) in the bottom of the blender
  • Blend away until you've reached desired consistency
  • Pour and enjoy!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Naming Benjamin

This little boy has captured my heart with his small, yet fiercely strong fists. His beautiful little mouth tells me the stories of the exciting and expansive world all around him. His deep blue eyes light up the room and penetrate my soul. I know he's only four months old, but I see a wisdom, a knowing, in those eyes that often feels ageless. He's precious and tender, passionate and alert. What this child has already learned to do in a span of only several months completely astonishes and astounds me.


The Lord gave me the name Benjamin one cold, winter night toward the end of my pregnancy. It means Son of the Right Hand. I was having a lot of anxiety during that time and was not sleeping well. One particular night, while the house was quiet, and the wind swirled around outside, I was tossing and turning in bed. I decided to comb back through the list of biblical boy names, since I had a baby girl name picked out within the first month of my pregnancy, but had never fully settled on a boy's name. I was still pretty convinced it was going to be a J name, but nothing felt absolutely right. This particular night, I decided to start at the beginning of the alphabet. When I got to Benjamin, my heart jumped. Benjamin. I had never thought of that name. What a beautiful name. Benjamin. I decided to say it out loud, quietly, with my hand over my belly. He kicked. I said it again, and again he kicked. This time I prayed and asked God if this was really to be my son. After that I said, "Benjamin," a third time, and a third time, he kicked from inside me. At that moment I prayed and thanked God for this child. I knew then, that I was having a son, and that he was to be Benjamin.

In the bible, Ehud, Saul, Mordechai and Esther, and the Apostle Paul all came from the tribe of Benjamin. I do not think it at all a coincidence that this precious child was given this name. The lives that this child has already touched in his mere four months of existence is beyond comprehension. I do not know what the Lord has intended for his life, but I can say for certain that He wanted him here for a purpose. I pray day and night for that purpose to be realized and for this child to grow to love Him who loved him first.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Never Really Liked Sleep Anyway

You know that feeling you get right as you begin to slip into slumber? That heavy, drowsy state somewhere between wakefulness and sleep, where the elements of a dream begin to creep their way into your semiconscious thoughts? I love that feeling. That is such a great place to be.

Do a little thought exercise with me. Imagine you are in your bed, with your favorite jammies on, listening to your nighttime music or the sounds of your house after all the lights have been turned off, and you start approaching that wonderful state, when all of a sudden someone begins fussing. Not crying, just fussing. It begins ever so subtly. You think it will go away, that maybe he will calm down and fall back asleep. You hold your breath and try not to move for fear of making it worse. Your mind begins racing. No, not now. Now is my time to fall asleep, not your time to wake up. It stops. You finally breathe and thank God that you can close your eyes again. You settle back in, relax your muscles, and prepare for your glorious trip back down Sleepy St. You've just about turned the corner, when all of a sudden, it happens again.

Now imagine this happening all. night. long.

This was my last night. And the night before that. Most nights, really, but especially so the last few days.

Welcome to the wonderful world of teething!




Little man has been drooling up a storm and shoving his fists (or anything that is in his fists) in his mouth any chance he gets. Poor little lamb... and let's be honest. Poor mama. Good thing we're both troopers.




The first four months of motherhood have been such a whirlwind. Every time I start to think I'm settling in and acclimating to each stage, he enters a new phase, complete with brand new challenges (or in this case, a reintroduction of old challenges). I know I should consider myself fortunate to have a baby that slept through the night so early, and I do, but in some ways it's harder when the bar has been set so high, and then ripped violently down to the ground and spat at, nay drooled on. You know what you once had and you long for those nights again. On the other hand, each new phase also comes with its own unique set of joys.

Little man has recently begun cooing and laughing more frequently and it melts my heart every time.




Sometimes we sing songs together. This is one of his favorites.





We also discovered that if you blow on Benjamin's face, he gasps and then smiles. Every time. It's one of the cutest and most hilarious things I've ever seen.




Did I mention talking? Benjamin is dangerously close to saying his first word. Can you guess what it will be?



He is my everything. I can't believe how quickly he is growing and changing. Happy 4 months, my little lamb. The most incredible 4 months of my life...

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