Category Archives: motherhood

In just a week – ailments!

#homeschoolbreak by the pool  #homeschool #wesleptinIn just 1 week.

We had 2 kids barf. More than once.  Stomach bug… food poisoning. The world may never know. Whatever it may be… anything barf, is about as bad as it gets in my book (for child related cold-issues). I hate everything about throw up… and would rather give birth without any pain killers, than to barf for hours. NO THANKS!

Parents came in town. Always nice… but was a lil scared they may contract whatever nasties we had… thankfully they did not.

While they visited. Owen contracted some weird facial rash. Pretty sure it is some sort of poison ivy rash…. sent it to a friend of mine who went to school for skin stuff and works for a dermatologist… shes pretty confident that is what it is.

Tonight Reed fell, hit his fore head onto a wall socket plate. Split the plate with his head, resulting in a Y shaped cut on his fore head. Thankful a band aid did the trick this time but it may leave a small scar. Then again, maybe not.

I tell you though. Some weekends I feel as if every wall is caving in. I think the overly rainy weather in Georgia has been putting extra fuel to the fire… I hate rainy days… A RAINY DAY, is ok. COUNTLESS ONES, not so much. I believe in environmental changes affecting peoples moods and depression. As much as I hate heat, I need sunshine. Amen.

We hoped to attend church tonight after Travis got off work. That also did not happen. He got stuck at work and didn’t make it home in time. I was looking forward to going too. So that was kinda a bummer. Although we did get some much needed house stuff going tonight. Still. Sunday for me without church, feels off. Worship is so important. When you miss it, you feel it.

In it all. Thankful to be in a country where we are safe… where our children are sleeping comfortably in bed…

Travis showed me some stuff going on overseas with Christians being persecuted… to the point they started to behead their children…. I try not to even think about it to much because its so terrible to think of. PURE EVIL… how messed up… and sad. Really you cant even put into words how terrible that is.

Prayers go out to those there… I truly cannot imagine.

 

 

 

To the Mom’s of Boys

Many who read this blog, may not know the small details to my life… such as how old I was when I got married. Many who I tell, gasp. cringe. think I am insane. wonder why. and often times, just give a smile and say something awkward.

I admit. I feel alone in my young age with so many on occasion. Majority of the time though, I am thankful.

I got married at 19.

2 years (not even) fresh out of high school.

I don’t have the memories of college dorms… or living on my own. While I attended a community college for a few years, it wasn’t much more than a couple classes and waitressing in between. Yes I use to waitress :) – another fact many may not know.

I always lived at home.

When I got married I had only had a license for two years.

I think my bank account had a few hundred bucks.

I don’t even think I had cooked a full meal on my own (my poor husband).

I was, young.

Travis and I choosing to get married when we did was meant to be. I don’t have regret of that… but I will say, being 19… and a wife. It’s a lot to take in.

Quickly into our marriage God began to bless us with children. I got pregnant 2 mo. after we got married… only to miscarry that sweet baby who I do believe was a boy… who we named Daniel (Ive never shared that here btw… but felt it was time), He passed just shy of my 2nd trimester. It was crushing and hard… and I remember it taking years to recover from. Even after the Lord blessed us with our 1st born Caleb, I had many boo hoo moments where Id cry over that small baby Daniel’s ultrasound. It is precious to me… and a memory I cherish. I know my husbands mom has a sweet baby boy with her in Heaven and that right there, brings me peace. Travis’ mom never got to meet me… or any of our children. I just have this mental image of her grinning with the same smile Travis inherited from her :) – as that sweet baby entered the gate.

After my 1st born Caleb was born, just shy of my 21st birthday… I never could have imagined the Lord would give me 3 more boys.

This verse holds such truth and is one of my favorites….


“Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.”
– Psalm 127:4

I am completely covered in boy love every single day…. and while some days are harder than others. One thing remains constant. They love me.

ED9A4643They love my imperfections.

They love me after I completely loose it…

They love me even after a bad meal with lots of veggies they hated to eat.

They love me after a long school day, where tempers boiled and tears may have been shed.

They love me with or with out my make up.

They love me with or without a bra.

They love me squishy stomach and soft unripped body and all.

They love my stupid faces and annoying voices.

They love me even in my brokeness.

Boys. Are the best…. and while it is all I know. What I do know is, I am so glad God gave me a house full of boys, who I know, love me in a way, that blesses me each and every day.

So. To the Mom of Boys.

Be brave.

Put on your flip flops or muddy shoes and get dirty.

Throw out the tight clothes and fashion forward skirts… (saving them for girls nights or a date night. No need to be mom-ish all the time)

Sit down, build, create… love on those boys. The messes, the boy jokes and obsession over their privates (already, geez) and smelly feet. One day, when they leave home, they will look back on their sweet short ole mom, and remember how she put up with all of it… and even when they leave, they will love you, in a way, that will forever melt your heart.

Remain strong. Guiding them and teaching them. One thing I am realizing, year after year… as I meet new people… am around others… see families at the park… and so on, is that God is so clear in His Word on how we are to teach… and guide… and discipline our children. There is nothing more frustrating to deal with than children who do not respect and obey. While every child will disobey… and disrespect at some point… teaching them the truth on why these things are so wrong… and so bad, is so important.


“He who withholds his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him diligently.”
– Proverbs 13:24

I am so thankful that from the get go, The Lord began to work in my heart as well as my husbands in these areas… and while I know, our boys are not perfect. I am proud of them. I am proud of the fact I can go out with all 4 and be okay. I am thankful for their obedience and respect for others… while they have their moments of failure… like everyone… I see a desire in them to please. I love how when I call their name, they now say “Mam’…” and while it is just one word… it is a word that just echo’s respect and honor… and I am thankful for how we have pushed and taught our boys the value in this. I hope and pray my boys continue to grow… and mature…. desire to serve, treat others with respect… and dig more and more into God’s Word as the years pass.

Often times Believers are criticized on the verse above… where it speaks about the Rod. I for one am not here to tell anyone how to discipline their child. I think that is something a parent has to come to a decision about. We hardly spank it seems these days… but there is a time and place for it in our books. Done in love and with proper teaching to go with it. I remember early on as a mom, one time my child darted out from my arms in a busy parking lot and all I could see flashing before my eyes, was a car coming and when I yelled “STOP!!” that child disobeying me and getting killed by the passing car. This thankfully did not happen… but it surely could have.

Children need to be taught to obey… and fast…

No matter how you choose to discipline… always follow through. Actions always have consequences… My boys know this… and while at times it seemed like a loosing battle… Now that my oldest is almost 10, I am finally beginning to see the fruit of all that hard work…

Thankful for God’s Word.

Thankful for Wisdom.

For guidance and examples from other moms.

IThere is no shame and no harm in ever going to a friend and asking her questions… if anything I believe that to be biblical… I have done it myself… in fact I just did it last week… called up a mom of 8 (almost 9) – just asking her plain and simple “How do you do it….” in regards to home school, etc… as soon as I was ready to quit… give up, toss my kids on a school bus, she encouraged me… and gave me that boost that I needed to stick with my gut and keep at it. Those conversations are…

Humbling…

Needed….

…and so worth having.

Thankful to be where I am today.

Now 30.

No longer a teenager ;-) – newly married with one baby.

Lord has been good to me.

I am loved. By Him… and thankful for my these boys, all blessings.

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Legacy of Mothers

Hard to believe it is May already… and that Mothers Day is right around the corner. What is even harder to believe is that this year I celebrate 10 years as a mother… 10! I really can’t believe it has been that long. I was 21 years old when Caleb made me a mom…. and honestly if you believe motherhood is in a woman’s heart, which I do, I became a mother even before Caleb. I got pregnant very shortly after I married Travis (I was 19) but miscarried around 3 months. So even before Caleb, I felt I was a mother. Just a mother who did not have her baby.

Motherhood is something that brings so much joy but can also bring so much heart ache. My heart aches for the moms who have lost babies… or even grown kids. I ache for the women who want so badly to be moms yet it just doesn’t seem to be possible. The mom who has waited for that adopted baby… only to be told it wasn’t going to happen this time. If I think about it to much, I often wonder why some who don’t even want to be mothers are blessed with the ability to be.

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Motherhood. It can grow you. Stretch you. Create in you a person you never knew possible. All because of the love for those sweet babes who enter your world.

So with Mother’s Day right around the corner, lets talk about how we as mothers can establish a legacy for our children.

With each child I have, I realize more and more the freedom that comes in relaxing.

The ability to go outdoors with my boys and allow them to get filthy dirty in a puddle or creek. To allow them to be boys. Playing in the mud. Filling their shorts with sand for no good reason. Peeing beside a tree (this truly happens often here). Splashing in a tub. Eating ice cream and getting sticky. Playing with paint without a care. As OCD as I am and as much as I like things to be kept neat… I knew, I had to learn to be ok with messes and finding the joy in it.

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I hope when my boys grow up they remember a mom who allowed them to be boys. Who encouraged their passions and interest. Who taught them to be respectful yet allowed them to have their moments of pure boy chaos.

I want them to remember a mom who worked hard to keep them fed and together. Yet a mom who wasn’t afraid to hold a snake or wade through a creek.

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I want these boys to see a girl. A mom. Maybe not so much a girl :) – who desires to teach them to love the Lord… serve others and be men of honor. A mom who may not have it together all the time but is honest with her struggles and open about her apologies.

All of which, I believe…. can be taught, in the puddles… in the mud…. with the critters…. and imperfections.

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… and to think back on my mother. A legacy she has left me is to cherish the small things. I remember my mom putting such emphasis on spending time with my brother and I. From the treasure hunts she’d have for us after school… to the arts and crafts she planned on every single holiday. Valuing the time I have with my children while they are tiny. My mom chose to stay home with us for most of our elementary years and for that I am thankful. Home always meant mom was there. A memory I want my boys to remember too.

What legacy do you remember growing up that your mom left for you? Or what legacy do you hope to leave for your children?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Shane Co. The opinions and text are all mine.

Let’s Talk Vaccines – Unheard Mother

One thing I have tried the last few years not to talk about are vaccinations. When I first became a mom almost 10 years ago (wow…) I was 21 years old, lived in Ohio and the whole “going to a doctor” with a baby was completely new to me. I was clueless and young… and so I did everything the Dr. order. EVERYTHING. Those who follow my blog know some of the battles we faced with our 1st born in regards to vaccines. We battled high fevers. Rashes, bumps, soreness, ear infections and a constant issue with congestion. It got so bad at one point, after a 104+ spike in fever after a vaccine around 6 months (I believe he got 4 at once that visit), as a worried mom I called my Dr. asking if this was normal… that Caleb kept battling these things… despite our efforts to keep him home, well… etc… He was not in day care… I did not leave often… and yet, always sick. She assured me “Oh yes, totally normal.” In my gut though I did not feel this was right. Why was my baby always sick. Why was he battling ear infections EACH shot he got. Why was he congested in struggling month after month. At around 1 year old we even had him tested for allergies because we could not figure out how to keep this little guy well. It was so frustrating and consumed me constantly.

I then started to do some home work myself. I spoke to a few older mothers with much older kids, got their opinions. I read so many websites I cant even count. I watched documentaries. I asked questions… It was an on going journey of research that honestly went on for YEARS in my life… at one point I had to put my foot down and make the decision to stop vaccinating until I was comfortable and knew it was safe for my child.

All a mother ever wants is the best for their child.

We live in a constant state of fear it seems as moms these days. I remember after having my 2nd born (I was 23). Dr. after Dr. telling me the huge risk I was taking not to vaccinate Taite. How this could happen, or that.

I remember one Dr. in fact telling me You have to get these shots. Or your baby will die.

Im not even kidding. She said that to me.

Dr’s over the years, as my children grew and we still declined the vaccines, would continue to throw fear remarks at me… and would even bring up the whole “school thing.” You cannot send them to school or daycare without vaccines. I guess its a good thing we wouldnt need to send them to either but regardless, that is a lie in itself.

As a mom who does not vaccinate… I get constant remarks by others on how MY child is putting THEIR child at risk. Their vaccinated child… who is vaccinated against these things…. so why would my unvaccinated child put their vaccinated child at risk? It is a constant back and forth battle… and after honestly loosing friendship over this subject, I began to keep my mouth shut and try to stay neutral if all possible.

Do we vaccinate?…

Not right now, no.

Are we anti-vaccine? No. In fact last year when Owen was bit in the face by a dog… I had to make a decision on a vaccine. Tetanus. Which he got that day. I don’t know if it was the right decision but in that moment, I felt it was best. So he got it.

When I was in labor with Reed and he was born… a nurse looked at me with a sheet to sign consenting to give my 6 pound baby HEP B Vaccine… I looked at her and said “No Shots.” as they continued to mess with my girly parts and clean things up. A mom after birthing a baby is handed forms requesting permission to give their baby who has been out of the womb for all of 2 minutes, a shot. Why?! Have you read the risk of Hep B? I never did. Nor was I ever told. Did you know that “hepatitis B is a primarily blood-transmitted disease associated with risky lifestyle choices, such as unprotected sex with multiple partners and intravenous drug use involving sharing needles—it is NOT primarily a “children’s disease.” - yet they feel the need to give it to EVERY newborn born?

The thing is. I think vaccines have their place. I think they have been used for good in some situations… but in many cases I think it is TO MUCH too soon. Why so many, so fast? Why not spread them out a bit… If you look at this chart you will see around 6 mo. of age babies are pumped FULL of vaccines… tiny little bodies full of this stuff… it cannot be good and the dangers are real.

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*Taken from the CDC website*

We each as mothers have to pray… do research…. and make a decision in regards to our child’s health care. No one should bully us into anything and often times when I went to Dr’s I felt bullied… unheard and disrespected.

I have mad props for any Dr. out there. The amount of schooling they are put through… the time they spend working… its hard… and I know they work for that and desire the best… and I am thankful for wise Dr’s who are used all over the globe to save lives and fight childhood illnesses that would otherwise kill. I am thankful for health care…. but what I am not thankful for is when I take my child into a Dr’s office and they act as if I am not worth hearing.

Last night I made the decision to take Taite into a very well known Urgent care for children in Atlanta. It is one of the highest rated and I have been there before. Because it was after 6pm we could not see Taite’s regular Dr… and the thought of waiting until morning and facing a Dr’s office with 4 young children, risking Reed being exposed to something in the Dr’s office… was not appealing to me. So I went to the urgent care while Travis stayed home with the other 3 boys.

Got to admit this little guy is so handsome even sick. #choa #sick #feelbettersoonTaite had been battling a fever for 7 days now. Off and on. One minute it would be 103. The next 99.9. One day he’d be fine, wanting to play. The next wouldnt even move from the sofa. Complained he had a sore throat and was obviously not feeling well. I am not one to rush to a Dr’s office… but yesterday Taite continued to feel bad and when I looked into his throat he had bumps all over the back of his tongue. I had never seen anything like it. It looked like his taste buds had become inflamed? very odd looking. It freaked me out enough to take him in.

As soon as you are seen for anything in regards to a child. One of the 1st questions you are asked is “Is your child up to date on their vaccines?” – If you respond “no” – you are then asked “Why not?” – and given looks. I have seen many nurses, doctors, etc… and each and every time, I get a look. The only Dr. who has not given me “a look” is the Dr. we see for their primary care. She has 2 boys and is very open minded and respectful.

After you explain that you do not vaccinate and the scribble a bit more on the clip board, they then do the general test. They checked Taite for strep (isnt that a fun test?) – and then we are sent to a room to wait results.

Strep Test, negative.

The Dr. then comes in to talk to us… and was so impersonal… and I realize she sees lots of people… but they could at least be kind… and smile or something.

She then goes on telling me that because Taite is not vaccinated they wanted to run lots of test to rule out possible infections. At this point I asked the Dr. could this possibly just be Influenza? She told me “No, theres no way its that. Its not circulating right now.” I then told her “Well… a close friend of Taite’s who he just saw less than a week ago was tested for Influenza B after having Xrays and blood work that all came back negative… yet after a respiratory type test she in fact had it.” She looked at me with surprise and I am not even kidding, acted as if I was telling her a story and dismissed the notion immediately.

She then told me that Taite needed to have 2 chest X-Rays. Blood drawn as well as a test for pertussis.

In the moment, as you sit in these Dr. rooms… you often times feel at a loss. Here I was with my child who was sick but not deathly sick. I knew he was ok I just wanted answers… and here this Dr. is wanting to torture your child running all sorts of test that honestly did not needed to be run.

Lets take a look at all these “vaccines” and possible “illnesses” Taite was tested for:

RV – Rotavirus – We actually have had this – Horrible experience … Taite had no signs at all of this at this moment though. Rotavirus is a pretty easy one to weed out.

DTAP – Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis – Taite clearly did not have Tetanus, Pertussis while it can seem like a common cold at first, this to me did not seem at all like Pertussis aka Whopping cough. He most def. did not have Diphtheria according to the symptoms listed from the MAYO clinic website.

HiB – Haemophilus influenzae type b – Symptoms for this include fever, lethargy, vomiting and a stiff neck. Taite had a fever bu the rest could clearly be weeded out.

PCV – Pneumococcal Vaccination – Most symptoms were similar to the above. Rapid breathing. Chest Pain. Those two things alone Taite did not have. He was breathing fine. No Chest Pain.

IPV – Polio – Symptoms include Fever, Sore throat, headache, vomiting, fatigue, back pain or stiffness, neck pain or stiffness, pain or stiffness in the arms or legs, muscle weakness or tenderness, meningitis. Taite had a slight fever and a sore throat. Both very common in many many things but he had none of the other symptoms of Polio.

MMR – Measles, Mumps, Rubella, and Varicella – He clearly did not have Measles, Mumps, Rubella or Varicella. Varicella btw is Chickenpox.

HEP A & B – He had no sign of these either. Feel free to look up all the symptoms of these vaccines Ive listed above if you want. It really is good to familiarize yourself with the symptoms.

My head hurts honestly from the amount I have read up on vaccines. I get tired of reading about them – and it is a battle I do not ever enjoy.

I realize children die of some of the above. I realize whopping cough is a big deal! I realize children have been crippled and killed by polio and measles is no walk in the Park. Each disease has its risk and there is reason to be concerned if a child EVER contracts them. We live in a fallen world with diseases… with illnesses.. with terrible things happening to children. Cancer… car accidents… abusive homes, etc… we live in such a broken world and yet we cannot live by fear. Just as the concern for these illnesses happening, there is also reason to be concerned with the many countless risk that come with vaccinated children, esp tiny lil humans aka babies… those risk are also VERY REAL.

This situation was just frustrating…. and yet, I went ahead with the test… At that moment I remember just feeling annoyed… and didn’t want to fight this in front of m 7 year old… There are times you just go with the flow and ride it out.

All test were normal.

After it was all said and done, the Dr. said “Well… maybe it is the flu.” – and sent us on our way.

The only thing to me that made sense was the Flu. The entire reason I came in was to be given an explanation as to why Taite had bumps on his tongue… only to be ignored and not even given an answer. I did my own home work and found out what they were… and apparently it is common to get those tongue bumps with fevers and colds… The Dr. never explained this to me. I had to research it myself on google, website after website.

The trip was pointless.

The only thing it revealed to me was how awesomely strong Taite is. Who did not cry the entire time. Even after having a needle put into his arm to take blood, that kid didnt even flinch!! He was a champ and such a joy to be with those 3 hours we waited.

It is another lesson learned.

So to all the moms who may be reading this.

Hear me out.

I don’t think less of those who vaccinate. I don’t think I am better. I do not hate Doctors… although at times I hate how they treat me some times. I do not think one way is the only way. I have lots of close dear friends who vaccinate and I love them still the same. I dont shun people who vaccinate. I dont hang out in unvaccinated circles with hippies and sip on kefir, wearing a sling and showing off my cloth diapers. While I may have done many of those things haha I am very open minded… and very understanding to peoples choices. I respect people for their own ways and understand it is a decision we each have to make.

Thankful my child is well.

I just wish people… Doctors included, could respect a mothers decision more. Not judge. Understand. Listen… and make sure that mother leaves heard.

Thinking of Easter

ED9A2394I haven’t felt very inspired spiritually lately. I know the reason behind it is the fact our lives have brought us some real battles… which have honestly put a huge wedge between me and the Lord. I think these times in our lives happen when we become believers. I think they are totally normal and I have yet to meet a believer yet that has not faced this feeling. Then again there may be believers out there who have been on fire 100% since coming to know the Lord and never wavered. I find it hard to believe but I suppose that is not impossible.

Worship for us has been hard in church. Not because of the church itself. Can I just get an Amen at how amazing a preacher and pastor our Pastor is? Pastor Johnny Hunt seriously is one of the best speakers Ive ever heard. I love hearing him preach. Our worship team as well, amazing. It isnt the church “itself” that is the problem… I think its just the situation we are in right now. Reed if you don’t remember got Rotavirus a few months ago… plagued him with 12 days of sickness. Not just a little sickness either. Every diaper change he had to have a bath. Every nap and bed time resulted in stripping of sheets and washing a crib. It was a constant state of worry and doing… between him and the other 3 boys and my husband even getting it as well, we were miserable for weeks… It literally took me a month to feel normal again after that sickness. Wow! That virus is no joke.

Since it however I had to make a decision to not put Reed back in nursery. My sanity could not take it. I knew without a doubt Reed picked up that virus from our church nursery. We had been NO WHERE prior to that Sunday morning we put him in nursery… It started with him and I just know it came from that room he was in that morning. I understand and realize babies get sick. Its part of babyhood :) – and part of motherhood. We have to witness and see babies struggle through sickness and the 1st two years typically are the hardest as far as that goes. However, after 4 babies I have never ever experienced sickness like that and It has crippled us when it comes to ever putting our baby in the nursery again.

I know we are not to live in fear… we are to take our thoughts captive and the Lord is with us… for me though, I had to just hold off on nursery and keep my baby safe. Reed right now has been with us in every single worship service… and after weeks of having to walk out because he was jabbering, wouldnt sit still or pooped… my husband or myself (almost always me though) misses the service. It is what it is. We try to tag team so one of us at least gets to listen to the entire sermon one sunday a month – but none the less it feels as if we are drifting in the area of worship and I do miss it.

Parenting in the Pew is something Ive talked about on here before… it is a training process and a rewarding one… but from around age 9 mo-2 years old, its almost impossible. Reed is 18 mo. old and wants nothing more than to run, explore and be loud. He has limited understanding at his age and its hard to punish a 18 mo. old for not wanting to sit for an hour :) – so yea, its a struggle.

A struggle I am sure we will continue to face for weeks to come. I keep saying “next sunday…. ill put him in nursery.” – as we head to church though we back out and even our 9 year old son Caleb tells me “you shouldnt risk that… ” – because that virus was so hard on him as well, the fear of another has affected him too… Which may be because he see’s how it has affected his mom. They are always watching :)

All that being said.

Easter is here.

I love Easter.

Its so bright and springy… and fun.

We do Easter Egg hunts and hang out with friends… we get to go to worship and sing praises about Christ and the hope he has given us all with his death, burial and Resurrection. Our children have been so sweet to watch as we read the stories of Jesus, Passover, the Cross and so forth. They colored pictures of Jesus washing the disciples feet and ended an evening praying and thanking God for their day and days to come.

So despite feeling in a bit of a funk spiritually… I feel the Lords covering over our family… I know the Lord is here with us in these struggles and I am thankful for where he has brought us and how he has blessed us.

Even small touches in our yard… such as these flowers….


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I see them and they are just small reminders of those blessings… At times I feel trapped in my home. Always being a mom…. cleaning up messes… washing laundry… feel secluded from other relationships… as I sit in our drive way alone with my boys, I often am ministered to just by what is surrounding our home. A home I know the Lord provided. A home we honestly were given for far less than it was worth because a Christian couple heard our story and felt it was a home meant for our family. A home surrounded by Bradford Pear trees in bloom and bulbs I didnt even plant sprouting up all over. A yard with green grass (possible weeds hah) where my 4 boys play daily… in their own imaginary world. Full of forts, creeks, bugs and critters. A place while not perfect, blesses me.

I hope all those reading have a blessed Easter… and remember tomorrow we are to praise for the Lord is Risen!!