Let’s be real…. pregnant. {Part two}

The first few weeks were similar to when I was pregnant with Hank. I found out super early because… well… I must confess I am a POAS (pee on a stick) FANATIC. Every day I watched the line get darker and darker. I never actually spent the money on a digital to see the words “pregnant”. I knew that I was but those cheapies from Amazon leave you guilt free with your obsession.  The first one I took I had Dave come look and he squinted and I assured him it was positive. I sent this first one to my friends. 


Do you see it? Do your eyes hurt now? It’s there. Ha! 

I won’t tell you how many I continued to take and it was a little bittersweet finally tossing them in the trash. 

Symptoms: Waves of exhaustion and nausea were symptoms of relief as I progressed and thankfully those symptoms were pretty mild. Sense of smell is sensitive especially to perfumes, colognes, and peoples hair. : )


Cravings: I noticed a trend of salsa and anything with tomato in it being super satisfying. 

Now: After stuffing my face with junk food for a couple weeks, I started feeling up to eating healthier foods and being brave with a little caffeine in the mornings. I love coffee, but at first it wasn’t appealing to me.  

I had the best of intentions to have one of those “fit” pregnancy’s as eating fairly healthy and working out were a part of my pre-pregnant life. I say fairly because I’m more of an everything in moderation kind of girl.  I don’t deprive myself of something if I want it. While being pregnant, Chick-fil-A, Starbucks, Zaxby’s, and McDonalds hot fudge sundaes call my name on the regular. I’m enjoying being pregnant and indulging here and there and I’m totally content being a little chubby preggo. Being pregnant the first time and now, I feel the most comfortable in my own skin. Weight gain and all. 


At almost 20 weeks,  I’m hitting the meal prep train again for Dave and I. I really don’t want to gain a ridiculous amount of weight for my size and I know I’d have more energy if I would just switch off this junk food fest. Party is over. I’ll make a few meals for Hank and keep some of his favorite snacks stocked because my once veggie loving toddler won’t even touch them. Going to have to get creative and disguise them. 

We are so excited to be less than a week away from seeing our peanut on the ultrasound and finding out the gender! Dave would love to have another boy, I would love to have a girl, but all in all I just can’t wait to have another sweet baby. Either way we are extremely blessed and I’ll be sure to soak it up more knowing how quickly those hard seasons pass by. 

I’ve been using a couple of apps that I really enjoy to follow along with baby’s progress. It’s amazing how much you forget about pregnancy once you’ve had child #1. 

The tried and true, What To Expect app is more traditional and has great little videos. My favorite is Ovia Pregnancy. You can customize the setting on what to compare your baby’s size to. Mine is set on games and toys and here is my 19 week image:


How fun is that! I also love the hand and foot comparison. Check it out: 


This app is more modern and gives the Momma a lot more information regarding how she feels and what to expect. Great resource!

Let’s be real…. pregnant. {Part one}

If you would have asked me a year ago about having another Hank or Hankette {Mom : )} I would have said “nope”.  I was one and done for all I was concerned. Hank’s an all around great kid in our eyes and is a wonderful sleeper.  Thoughts of the sleep deprived newborn cycle still haunt me to this day and was definitely one of the main reasons I didn’t want to go through that again.  I had a hard time and those of you who know me, know I was very open to share the dark side of being a new Mommy.   

Never mind the physical healing, that was hardly noticeable (except for my stitches and one giant pot hole Dave tried to avoid on the way to the pediatrician, HOLY COW. PAIN.) The lack of sleep, nursing, whacky hormones, and my intense sugar craving on top of my personality, anxiety, and OCD made for a black hole that I felt I was trying to climb out of constantly. I had PPD and didn’t know it. Mine wasn’t as extreme as some but it’s evident I was experiencing it. It took a while to recover from that and like most things it got easier just like my friends said. Fast forward to the icing on the “no more kids” flavored cake – a tormenting 3.5 hr flight to St. John. Long story short, I hate flying, Hank screamed for an hour, lots of people got free drinks, EXCEPT ME, and I had a nervous break down in the midst of all the turbulence.  “He is NEVER going on vacation again and we are NOT having more kids!” I said to Dave while shaking with tear filled eyes. I thought I was going to explode. 

I’m smiling because Praise the Lord we were off that plane and on a boat to happiness. See the ‘tude on his face?

A month or two after our trip last summer, when patient after patient at work kept asking if I was going to have more children I remembered that Dave and I had previously talked about having at least two kids, God willing. So, I tried to remember all the reasons why I should give Hank a brother or sister. I pondered the big picture of life and came face to face with my selfish reasons for not getting pregnant again. Our patients continued to ask and they would share what it was like going from 1-2 kiddos and how it’s easier the second time around and “don’t give up on Motherhood a second time” and one patient in particular shared her story of her large family and how they are a close knit team and how much she wanted that for me. My lengthy response always included “God hasn’t put it on my heart to have another child.” 

I began to pray for God’s Will, and if it mean’t that I was to bring another one of His children into this world, I knew He would tell me. I gave Him all of my worries, fears, doubts, and Mom guilt. I remembered that this life is not my own. I am His hands and feet and I’m here to do His work. You see, having children isn’t ALL about the family we want, it’s fulfilling God’s Will. Hank was in God’s book long before I was born. Hank has a purpose everyday of his life. Hank will set out to do God’s work. I am an important part of directing Hank and showing him God’s love and helping him to grow in his relationship with Him. We all play a very intricate part of God’s plan. So who am I to stand in God’s way? 


This is in Hank’s room and one of my favorite verses.

Once I got through the tough times, I experienced Motherhood for what it purely is: a love like no other, a joy I have never felt in my entire life, pride, worry, and as my Mom says, “Having your heart walking outside your body.” 

I continued to pray daily for God to tell me the plan. Over a few weeks, I felt it in my heart, the Holy Spirit moved me daily, songs, Joyce Meyer, and one particular patient that turned her head and looked me straight in the eyes and told me, “You need to give him a sibling.” Her tone was without question, it was a command. I teared up knowing that was confirmation. God put it heavy on my heart that we would have another child. I didn’t know if this meant a biological child, or an adopted child. 

Three months after I shared with Dave what God told me, I found out I was pregnant, just shy of four weeks. You could barely see a positive line and I diligently watched that line grow darker everyday. 

Thank you, God. 

…..to be continued.

Egg-citing!

Spring is here and I couldn’t be more excited for beautiful flowers, flip flops, and the warm sunshine on my skin. I’m so pale you can see every vein and artery in my body. But, that’s not what I’m really … Continue reading

Tune it out

Hello friends, and HELLO WEEKEND!

It’s quite beautiful outside here in East Tennessee, but BURRR is it cold! Where did our lovely spring weather go?  Surely this is the last of it.

While the little guy is taking his afternoon nap (can I get a woop woop!), I’m relaxing on the couch listening to some music and wanted to share a song I love with you-

TUNES

I’ve really been hooked on Spotify lately. It’s so much easier to use than Pandora and I find there is SO MUCH more variety in the music.  My favorite is to browse the pre-made stations and selecting one that fits the mood I am in.

Most of the music I am in to these days is mellow and instrumental.  I love jazz and anything with acoustic or electric guitar.

I especially love any song that has lyrics that seem to fit right in to my life. There always seems to be a random song that will pop up that will cure my thoughts. You can relate, right? That’s the great thing about music. We can connect with it in such a way that it helps us cope with the many good and sometimes bad experiences life brings.

There is so much of the world that can creep in and influence our thoughts and then our mood if we let it. Sometimes worry and anxiety kicks in after that if we don’t take control over our mind.  I’ve mentioned before my mind muscles are a work in progress and music and God’s Word really help to strengthen them.

While listening to the “Sunny Side Up” station, a Jason Mraz song came on that I hadn’t heard of before. It just clicked with me and it’s like it was God’s way of reminding me not to worry. : )

Here is the song that has rocked my world and reminds me to “live in the moment”. Enjoy!

Well, hello there, SPRING!

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Hallelujah! It’s the first official day of Spring!

Looks like it’s going to be yet another cloudy and rainy day here in Tennessee, but I will take it because we need that rain for all of the beautiful flowers to grow!

I love spring – the sunshine, the breeze, colorful clothes, and lots and lots of beautiful flowers. I love wild flowers in particular and would love to plant some around my house.  I am no green thumb, I’d like to be, but I have to be honest with myself and save my money. I buy, I plant, I forget. Money down the drain. Surely, if I bought the pansies that sit outside of the home improvement stores and plopped those down in the flower pots on my front porch I could keep those alive. Just water them right?

Any-who, here are some pretty flower pictures I found on Pinterest

spring wildflowers

Oh, this picture is just so dreamy. I love assortments of color with all different sizes and heights!

135b0338690979ad6afbdd10764fb128I would LOVE to have this nice arrangement on my front porch. The rich colors are scrumptious and I love the stone planters. Someone come fix this up for me and tell me what to do to maintain. : )

SPRING FASHION

I am not a fashionista or anything, nor do I always keep up with the latest trends. It’s simple, If I think it looks cute and works with my body type and is comfortable, I’ll buy it. With that said, I need to buy some spring clothes. These outfits are my kind of style of comfy and cute.

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RECIPES

Some fun Easter recipe’s I would love to make. I have a huge sweet tooth right now and my mouth is watering looking at these. Check out Wine and Glue for the recipe and pretty photos of these yummy Easter Egg Cookie Dough Truffles

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I found this Easter egg confetti surprise cake on Pinterest but can’t find the recipe anywhere. I am on the hunt for a good bowl pan to bake each cake in and then do the rest free hand. The idea is to make this every Easter for Hank as a nice treat after an Easter meal. Isn’t it cute?

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I hope everyone has a great Friday (Woot Woot!) and a fantastic weekend.

xoxo Lauren

New Things, Fun Things!

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We live in an older home and let’s just say the windows are stuck in the 70’s…literally.  I’d really like to have all of the windows removed and have new ones put in.  Until then, I’m working on making them beautiful from the inside..out? : )

My bathroom window used to have a half-length brown curtain that was existing when we bought the house. It’s only use was for privacy, but I could still see the remaining part of the window and it’s metal panes.

I bought some beautiful fabric from Jo-Ann, measured, and snipped away.

I have a really nice sewing machine and I like to sew but this Momma ain’t got time for that these days… for now at least.  So, I bought some permanent iron-on adhesive to hem it up. I REALLY love this print and the colors and every time I walk in my bathroom it instantly makes me happy.

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Thing 2

I ordered some glass spray bottles for my essential oils a few days ago. Mixing up some linen spray today. I also ordered some eucalyptus and citronella essential oils to make up a mosquito repellent for our summer days and our yearly trip to St. John. Really hoping this works better as it will be a much safer and healthier alternative than the toxic deet sprays!

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Thing 3

Joyce! Joyce! Joyce! She’s the woman! I signed up for a free subscription to Enjoying Everyday Life magazine (I actually forgot I did this, so it was especially a nice surprise in the mail today!) and got my first issue today. There isn’t a whole lot to it but I am an anxious to read about her outreach and ministry a little bit more. Also, I picked up her Power Thoughts daily devotional while I was at the grocery store a couple of weeks ago. I really enjoy reading a quick scripture and a message  from Joyce everyday.

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Happy Wednesday!

xoxo Lauren

There’s a baby in the nursery…

I’m baaaaack!

Hello again! It’s great to be back y’all.

I wanted to do a quick post because I have been itching to get back on here and quite frankly I am so exhausted!

Flash forward a little over 6 months and here we are with a precious baby boy. I must confirm, God’s Birth Plan was perfect. : )

We were blessed to have our family in town and present to see our sweet Hank the morning he was born. Oh happy day!

Now, the main juicy part of this post is the fact that my child is SLEEPING in his CRIB in HIS ROOM for the first night ever! Silly me, thought we would have him in his room much sooner, and I am sure our pediatrician would have recommended it, but we went at our own pace and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve found doing what feels most comfortable and natural is what’s best for Hank and I… not what the books say. I’m a rebel I know. ; )

I’ve got two monitors on him, so far so good!

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So peaceful!

I am on vacation next week and I plan on whipping up some fresh and fun posts for y’all!!

So, what can you expect to see from this blog?!?!

  • Pinterest projects
  • Products I love (household, beauty, baby, and mommy stuff)
  • Home organization
  • Inspiration and thoughts
  • Life as a Mom
  • Crafts (stitchery, paint, and messiness)

Thanks for stopping by friends : )

xoxo -Lauren

God’s Birth Plan

The past few days I have been thinking about the birthing experience I am about to embark on in a few short weeks. Along with trying to think of the things I need to prepare for my little boys arrival, I knew I needed to have some sort of birth plan in mind. I am all too aware that when the moment comes to give birth, your “birth plan” can sometimes and will most likely go right out the window. It’s all about that baby and getting him or her born safely. With that said, here are a couple of things I know that I would prefer for my delivery:

Epidural– Yep, that’s a no brainer for me. I am a WIMP! My mom delivered me without any pain interception. When she had my brother, she had what was called a “saddle block” and she was unable to sit up and hold him after he was born because of it. So when she gave birth to me, she wished to have zero pain medication so that she could hold me. 🙂

It is quite scary how much I am like my mother (in a good way!) but my sensitivity to pain and my mental strength came from somewhere else. Which might I add, my mental muscles are the HARDEST muscles to work on.

So, with God’s blessing, and if the timing is right, give me that epidural!

Donating Chord Blood/ Delayed Chord Clamping – Still undecided on this one. I will have to seek God’s answer in prayer on the right choice

As you can see, I am just showing up for the party and letting whatever happens, happens. My faith in God is solely where I rest and He is who I will be connected to on that beautiful, blessed day when our son is born.

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Wow, how AMAZING (this calls for the word amazing, y’all) are God’s words here? In this verse, I find peace, comfort, love, and mercy. It is such a cool thing to know God has Hank’s life already in the books. My son has a purpose on this earth that he needs to fulfill for God. God LOVES him. God made him! And God chose Dave and I to be his parents. Wow. I feel so humbled (and a little nervous!) that God is blessing us and trusting us with this child. (This is hanging above Hank’s crib)

In such a blessing as this, I can’t help but feel pressure. It is up to Dave and I to nurture our son with God’s word. To set the example for him of what love and giving is, forgiveness and faith. Such a huge job to take on. I know we cannot do this without God’s word and constant prayer.

Throughout my pregnancy I have completely put my faith in God. That’s financially and physically. He has continued to provide for us, as He always has. He has kept my body healthy, given me the strength to carry and grow this baby. So my birth plan is going to be God’s plan.

I felt God wanted me to share this with you all this morning, and especially share this with my pregnant mommy friends.

My part in God’s Birth Plan is focusing on scripture to help me cope with the possibilities of pain like no other and stamina to get through the laboring. I searched online and quickly found what I was looking for. I will be printing this out and packing it in my hospital bag!

Scriptural Encouragement for Preparing & Giving Birth

This was just what I needed. I want to connect with God and my husband completely on this day peacefully and without fear. All the Glory goes to God!

I hope this testament is one that gives you all courage and faith in the days to come and reassure you of God’s power and love for ALL of us. God’s love for us is like no other and we have to let Him help us. He longs for us to be close to Him and to trust Him. 🙂

 

xoxo Lauren

In the moment

I can’t say enough how much the Daily Love has helped and inspired me.  My mom introduced me to the Daily Love.  She is always filling me up with wisdom and the answers to most of my problems, so thanks to her I can live more at peace (sometimes).  I’ve made it a ritual to read this newsletter by Mastin Kipp every morning before work.  Some of the messages don’t pertain to my situation or how I am feeling everyday, but boy when the message smacks me in the face and I get chills, I know God was answering my prayers. Sometimes I just need clarity.  Being a highly sensitive person, I analyze EVERYTHING, get worked up over silly stuff, and sometimes feel relief if I stop and just look at the BIG PICTURE. Here is a link to an article to find out more about the characteristics of a highly sensitive personality http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/26/highly-sensitive-people-signs-habits_n_4810794.html

Moving on to what smacked me in the face, (yet again) this morning while reading my Daily Love, was the quote found at the end of his message:

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It’s quite simple to understand this message. It’s also simple to live out this message day in and day out if we have the FAITH to go with it.  I think the key words to fulfill this way of daily life are “knowing that you are provided for”.  Being provided for may not always be what you envision.  God wants us to live abundantly and be fruitful; but to some, they have the desire to strive for all the expensive luxuries such as their home, cars, clothing, handbags.. etc.  I like nice things, but I also realize that you have to step back and acknowledge all that God has provided for you for your mere survival. Being grateful for having a shelter, a vehicle so that you may drive to work and in return receive a paycheck are a few examples.  We have to change our way of thinking about what God is “supposed” to provide for us. FIrst of all, we don’t deserve anything. So take that idea out of your rear end. God BLESSES us. God has mercy. God is forgiving. God is loving above all. I believe God is rewarding in intangible ways.  I also believe that if you work hard and treat those that have helped you get to where you are in your success that you deserve every bit of that money and can spend it how you want. I’m just trying to break down how you can live as this quote says daily. Get all the other crud out of your mind, and stop planning every step of your life. Let it go and let it just happen. Certainly, don’t fly by the seat of your pants, but take Faith and apply it to your actions daily and take risks.  Get out of your comfort zone, and just appreciate the day.  

I know I went on a rant and went outside my lines, but I just feel it’s crucial to get your head in the game the right way first.  So, each day from now on, try to be present in everything you do.  The people you are around especially if you are spending time with a loved one is the most important time of your day. Listen to their words, be active in those conversations.  Be aware of how others are feeling. Laugh and enjoy life’s little moments. 

I am ending this very long post with something my mom just said on Facebook in response when  I posted this quote. It makes me laugh considering what I shared with you at the beginning. : )

“When we are sad, we are living too much in the past.  When we are anxious, we are living too much in the future.  All we really have is this moment so live in gratitude!”

Ain’t that the truth?!

Yep, she’s awesome. : )

xoxo Lauren