29 August 2009
26 August 2009
So - LT, this is what I've learned through these past 6 difficult months ...
Anyone who knows me, knows that I take great pride in our home, in our children, in opening that home to many different people, usually a couple of times a week. I've loved running my own music studio, in being involved with music at church ... I love to do things, go places, create things, make memories. But when my hubby broke his leg 24wks ago, and I began to bleed at 14wks pregnant (or was it more/less? ... I can't exactly remember ... ) and ended up in the emergency room - I realized that I could not do all that I had been able to.
And I think that this was a great lesson for me, personally. Why? Because, I've always been confident in what I do, because I care a lot about how others perceive me, because I feel the need to be able to say, "I did that myself." But when our home was in chaos 5 months ago, and I was literally on the ground weeping from exhaustion and the fear of losing our baby, we did what was advised to us - and we got help.
It's a funny thing - because Miss. S has lived with us for a few months now, and it was suggested to me to never talk about her ... because it would take away from anything that I DID do, that people would judge and roll their eyes, that it was nobodys business. But I'm now at a place where I can say, "You know what - I needed help, and if I'm silent about it - it feels like I'm ashamed. And I'm not."... and I literally whacked down my pride (which was a mountain, as embarrassing as that sounds ...) and did what was best for our home during this whole season.
Miss. S is not a "free ride" ticket. It's far from perfect, but the benefits have more than outweighed any negatives. She works two 4hr shifts in a day, Monday to Friday. I don't sit and eat bonbons all day (oooo - that sounds like a nice thing to do, doesn't it??) ... although I have needed her MUCH more these last 2 weeks than I ever thought I would. Basically, whatever I am unable to do, she does. I will not lie - it is pure luxury to not bend down and clean the bathtub (not like I could *laughing* ... that would not be pretty), to know that if our baby comes in the middle of the night - that the boys will not be disturbed and we can leave them in good hands, to not have to lift the heavy items from Costco out of the cart - and the thought of being able to pick Tias up from school without having to wake the baby up from a nap in the fall? I am so very, very, very grateful for this.
I am also extremely grateful to be financially able to have this kind of help. I know that not everyone can. I will also let you know that Canada allows $7000 per child to be written off with nanny care (as IF you'd spend that much!!). A nanny is also so much more than childcare, it's "homecare" - for around $8.00 an hour. A live-in nanny is less expensive than Daycare, or for housecleaning, if you were curious. Heck, we've paid for babysitters that charge $10.00+ per hour.
How long will this season last? We were asked to sign a year contract, that will expire this coming March. Will we renew our contract? Not with the agency, but with Miss. S - I really don't know ... mainly because we have grown to love Miss. S and she is trying to get her residency and bring her son here to be with her. If it takes a few more months of her working for her to do that, then we may decide to keep her on for those few months.
Now - that is not to say that people who choose to have help for longer seasons, shouldn't. Every home, every situation is different. Even our own choice to have live-in help was decided based on very specific circumstances ... if my hubby hadn't busted his leg when he did, I may never had felt desperate enough to need the help.
There are things that I am able to do because I have help. I spend more time with my kids. Our home is basically calm, in functioning order ... that is SUCH an incredible gift for the stage that I'm in with our pregnancy. This is VERY important to my hubby (for all of you who know him, you know he likes his house in order *grin*) If I didn't have the help, things would NOT be so efficient around here.
Do I regret having help? Sometimes ... when I feel like people perhaps belittle my own accomplishments and make me feel like the only reason I can do "anything" is because I have help ... I've only had help for a few months, and I don't like feeling like "everything" that I have accomplished prior to having Miss. S is not my own. But that just goes back to my OWN pride, my OWN issues, and my pride is not what's best for our home.
And I think we all get help in different ways - and it's a beautiful thing to recognise it. Some people receive help by parents having a basement suite that their kids can live in, or perhaps by providing a job or some other financial/tangible way (paying debts, loaning a car, giving an old couch etc..) Some families get together during the week and grandmoms make dinner - relieving the younger moms from having to make something that night. Some families are able to give of their time, and watch their grandchildren for a couple of days during the week while parents go to work, or let those parents have a night out. Some people don't have any family that are able to help, but are surrounded by friends who are so willing to be that "family". Whatever help you get - stop and be thankful. Recognise it. If you don't get help and feel you need it - I would so encourage you to be brave and ask. And if you don't need help, then maybe you're the perfect person to help someone else who does ...
Which leads me to Proverbs 31. Have you ever wondered what the conversation was like between the Proverbs 31 woman, and her husband? As their responsibilities grew, as their "territory" grew ... can you see him sitting down at the dinner table saying, "Look, Honey - I really appreciate the way you help others, and making a warm meal for all of us. But I NEED you to clothe the kids in scarlet - the snow's coming. I don't care how you do it ... go ask the neighbour girls next door to come and help ... you can't do it all on your own because I also need that property bought at the end of the stream ..." Do you think she felt failure? That she didn't measure up? And her having to "give in" and ask for help was easy? ( ... that is, if the Proverbs 31 woman was more than just an example of who we women could be in Christ ...)
So, LT, this post is to let you - and everyone else - know that I do not, cannot, do it all on my own. Having the house in order, the laundry done, playing with the boys, being involved at our church, starting a business - all while being pregnant and with a husband recovering from surgery ... nope. I wasn't able to do it. And I know that many can, and do a fantastic job of it. How does that make me feel? Not so great, actually. But that's ok *smile* ... that's my issue - not theirs.
Will I forget this lesson, and try to be "all of that" when Miss. S leaves and I'm doing it all? I'm HOPING to continue to manage my time wisely - like I used to with only 2 kids - so that when she DOES leave, the hole isn't so huge. But it will be. I know that. There will be definite parts of reality that will slap me in the face ...
I went back to Proverbs 31 and smiled when I read verse 15. She had help. Have a good read of this passage, and you will find MANY things that YOU do are exactly what this scripture encourages us wives, mothers, friends to do ... here's what it says, starting at verse 10:
11 Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.
13 She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls.
16 She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.
21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
22 She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:
29 "Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31 Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
25 August 2009
I have two friends who have the most lovely necklaces ... and I've been coveting them ever since I saw them. I know, shame on me ... blah blah blah *wink*.
24 August 2009
Well - it's Monday morning and I am full of many emotions. And most of them are way down deep in my bones, a result of a million raging hormones that make me feel like I'm going a wee bit insane *grin*. Pleading insanity isn't necessarily a bad thing ...
Everyone asks, "So - is this pregnancy different?" ... meaning, "Do you think it's a girl?" And truthfully, I have no clue ... but these last 2 weeks have DEFINITELY been different.
I am pretty much in constant pain - that constant groaning, low stomach ache. And THAT is not normal. I remember with Mattias, that the moment I felt something "down low", it was the start of labour. Same with Josiah ... in fact, my water broke BEFORE I even felt the slightest pain.
This pain keeps me from being the mom that I want to be. I am so tired, and on the verge of tears ... again, not because of anything particular - just the whacked out hormones *grin - gotta love them*. My feet are so swollen, that they've now cracked on the top of my foot to where the swollen bends are. I cannot feel the tips of any of my fingers, and lying down to sleep causes both hands to throb with swollen-ness, but with the added aggravation of pins-&-needles.
I drank the "tea" yesterday ... a couple of cups. And not a whole lot changed ... small things I noticed, but nothing big.
I was chatting with a friend on the weekend - and she was so great. I bared my soul to her, all the out-of-control feelings I have, the useless-mother-syndrome ... and she validated me and reminded me that I'm at the end ... that I'm normal. That I'm not being ungrateful ... that I cannot avoid being consumed by these things, because they are living inside of me ...
SO - where does that leave me? Well ... this week is going to be a CALM week, no late nights or doing more than I should. The boys are going to go to bed on time for the entire week ... I'm going to bring my overnight bag with me, wherever I go.
Maybe it'll be today ... or tomorrow. I have have 11 days left before "due date", which means I could have a long ways to go if he/she's overdue ... I cannot control that - and God already has the perfect birthdate for our new little one ...
I just hope it's before my hubby leaves for England on Sept.12.09.
21 August 2009
And wanna see what it looks like in the nursery? Ok - so wehaven't changed the room at all since we prepared it for Josiah. Why bother? I like it, it's calm and cozy ... and if it's a girl - well, then I just might "girly" it up. If it's a boy ... for me, it's perfect.
20 August 2009
But I don't have a lot of energy to do all the things I would like to with my boys. I'm feeling guilty for not jumping on the trampoline with them, going for bikerides, playing street hockey (oh, come ON BABY - get out of me!!). But both boys do love crafts and THAT I can do.
And then we played ... over and over and over and over again. And it was funny - because he liked the game so much, he would purposely NOT pick pairs so that the game would go on longer.
Maybe today we'll make more - to make it a bit trickier *wink*. Or bake cookies. Mmmmmm. COOKIES. That sounds better to me :-)
19 August 2009
Soooo ... whatdoya think? Do you have a room in your house that you went BOLD on? Do you love it, or regret it? It's just paint, is what I figure ... I could change it to a calm taupe and put the pillows away ... but I won't be doing that.
I like the orange. *GRIN*
18 August 2009
17 August 2009
Ok - so it's not me!! Not yet (while I'm typing this ... at least).
So tonight the boys are in the bath, and I'm getting their beds ready, laying out their pjs, closing the blinds etc ... and feeding the fish.
Siah has Tias' old fish, "Guido & Luigi" named from the CARS movie. And Tias has his beloved aquarium, and loves loves loves it. So, tonight I'm feeding the fish and notice something ... naw, it couldn't be?? So I look again ... must be a reflection? A ... what else could it be??
Nope - it was a BABY fish. A wee little orange and black fish, swimming under a fat mama fish (I'm guessing??) and slim papa fish. Ok ... I thought fish HATCHED from eggs?? Does this mean there are more?? If so, this fish has to be weeks old ... how did we miss it??
Whatever the case, it seems to me that the Lord had a super surprise for Tias. And how PERFECT in the timing with our own little one due in the next few weeks? Honestly - I actually laughed and shook my head.
God - You care so much about us, and know EXACTLY what's going on down here - don't You *smile*.
And what did Tias name him (or her)? "Baby Tiny Happy Fish". *grin*.
14 August 2009
For the last week or so, I've been CRAVING crushed ice. I mean, to the point where I get a little perturbed if I can't have any. Strange, I know.
SO, after I got myself a healthy cup full of crushed ice to munch on, I googled "chewing ice". And you know what came up?? IRON deficiency!!
That is SUPER interesting, because I'm lightheaded and low energy ... craving ice and not eating a lot. I'm going to go take a prenatal vitamin (haven't done that in a couple of weeks ...) and see if the craving goes away.
Have any of you craved chewing ice during pregnancy??? I've never heard of such a thing *shaking head* ...
As for the progression of being 37 weeks ... last night I was woken up by low, groaning pains - that never amounted to much, except stealing my sleep. That's always the way it is, isn't it? When you're supposed to be storing up sleep, you get it taken away from you to prepare for AFTER the baby comes
Ah well ... not long now!
13 August 2009
The RAILING MEN are here. They are officially my favourite people - even though I've been mighty frustrated with them over the last 6 weeks ... BUT the railings are starting to take shape and look AMAZING *yay!!*. They're doing the upstairs first, so that Josiah doesn't decide to take a running leap off of the 2nd floor onto the couch in the family room. And he'd try - trust me *wink*!
This means that I may actually be able to post some RENO pics ... "befores" and "afters" ... I'm excited to see them, and I LIVE here *laughing*.
I've cut and pinned the curtains for Josiah's room ... hoping to hem them and put them up within the next hour ... I'm NOT a seamstress ... but I can hem with my machine.
And my hubby and I are going out for dinner tonight with P&S *holla!*. P was so helpful by providing a wheelchair for my hubby after his surgery. It's only been about 5 weeks that he HASN'T been using it ... so, we're taking them out to a fantastic restaurant for some grown up time - and I'm looking forward to a bucket full of laughs ... they're good for it *wink*!!
OH!! And my sis-in-law took my boys on a Starbucks date late this morning, and I've ALMOST finished editing all the pics of last week's wedding. I had taken 800 pics, and was able to scale them down to 250. I love editing pics - although time consuming ... it's like art to me.
Can't wait to show YOU them and put them on my site ...
I've got TOO MANY pics to sort through, with Tias' bday, the family reunion, Penticton pics - heck, I haven't even finished my Australia/New Zealand trip from May!! I'm sensing a panic attack coming soon ... *grin*. Well. Maybe.
Alright ... typing as fast as possible - and off to my sewing machine ...
Have a FANTASTIC day!!
12 August 2009
Then, I went and got myself a pair of pajamas for the hospital ... I wouldn't be caught DEAD wearing the t-shirt and shorts I've been wearing these last few weeks *blush*. So - they're now in the wash, getting a lovely dose of "clean" ...
I'll be starting to get my hospital bag ready ... mainly because my doctor told me today to be prepared for a quick delivery. That was said after I voiced my concerns about a long labour and having high expectations after Josiah's 3 hour-start-to-finish-delivery.
Now, OBVIOUSLY no one knows what I'm in for. When this baby comes or how long the delivery will be, is up to the Lord. Nothing I can do can change that ... but I'd rather be prepared JUST in case it is early and quick ...
I was NOT prepared for our first born at 36 weeks, and my hubby and friends actually went out and bought the rocking chair and everything else while I stayed at home, taking care of the new wee one. SO - don't want that to happen again ...
Anyway - I had thought the baby had "dropped", but apparently isn't QUITE there yet. It's head is down, and had dropped a bit, but isn't lodged in that way it will be ... "When you waddle, you'll know," my doctor said. Such a man *grin*.
Ok ... so off to sew some curtains, get the boys ready for a dinner at my folk's place before my dad heads off to Russia for a couple of weeks ... then, the stair railings come DOWN tonight *WHOOO HOOO!!!* and the new ones are being put up tomorrow.
Must run ... much to do!
10 August 2009
I delivered my finished edited pics to them last night ... I love watching the slideshow with clients and hearing them comment about different photos - photos of moments that they didn't even know existed ...
And if you're interested in seeing pics from this wedding photoshoot, go to my http://www.redhandedphotography.com/ site and click "featured photoshoot". Look for this photo to click:
07 August 2009
01 August 2009
I'm not really one of those people who particularly enjoys being pregnant. Maybe it's because I'm only 5ft tall and I feel like my body is completely overtaken by the growing babe, but whatever the case - this is our last one and I'm trying to enjoy it. Now that the baby is bigger, there's less of the direct kicking and more of the rolling and stretching ... which I think feels pretty cool. That is, unless it's in a spot that makes me feel like my skin's going to split open *grin*.
We just got home from my-side's Family Reunion yesterday. We've been doing this every few years, and it's always full of great fun and memories ... I'll post more of that later. For today, I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off ... the lighting guy arrives today and I have my FINAL wedding to photograph today from 3pm - 8pm. Unfortunately, I think the baby dropped yesterday - so I'm asking the Lord for an extra dose of help today ... I'll post more on today's wedding later.
For now, here is a post I saved as a draft a few days ago. I hope it makes you smile *grin*. I started thinking about all the things I will not miss about being preggo ... here's my list:10. food cravings - like vanilla frosties from Wendy's.
9. swollen gums, and the dreaded visit to the dentist during pregnancy where there's more blood than cleaning. Yuck.
8. loose joints that click and cause pins and needles to run down various parts of my body. This drives me mental and makes me feel like I'm about to have a stroke *smirk*.
7. panel pants that are supposed to feel comfortable, but actually make me feel claustrophobic and smothered.
6. long toenails because I can't reach them any more.
5. difficult attempts at shaving in the shower. There just isn't enough room to move.
4. heartburn that wakes me up every night despite my religious habits of taking Tums before I go to bed.
3. swollen feet and hands that make it painful to walk and impossible to make a fist. But I figure I'll be peeing a good 10lbs off of me after the baby's born *grin*.
2. speaking of peeing, I HATE peeing 3 times in the night ... and the massive effort it is to just heave myself out of bed.
1. having a back that hurts all the time, because of the front-heavy belly.
Is it worth it? Of course. But I would be lying if I didn't say that I was looking forward to getting on with it, getting my body back (I've been preggo 5 times in 5 years, and only had 3 months of having my body at a place I was happy with), and meeting this little gift God has given us.
I have 4 weeks left, according to my "dates". But if this baby comes like our first-born, this baby will arrive on Monday. Not good - Tias has his 5th birthday party on Tuesday ... I'll be posting on that later too *wink* ...
So ... after Tuesday - this baby can come. I don't care if the renos are done ... but that's another issue all together ...
If you haven't already - would love for you to vote on the sidebar ... boy or girl??