There was lots of of snuggling, sleeping and lounging around….
Perfect recipe for a cold-january-weekend…
There was lots of of snuggling, sleeping and lounging around….
Diclaimer…Stop reading now if you are skirmish, or you’re just too good to read about the intricate deets of poop.
As a momma to an infant, I’ve come accustom and all to familiar with blowouts. I’ve even developed a rating for the ever beloved dirty diapers. On a scale of 1 to 10, a 1 being a cute little skid mark, and a 10 being leakage that goes all the up the back-to the neck-and around the front. I’ve even got it down to a science to ensure maximum diaper coverage and minimal leakage. I can sense them coming, I see little Miss tense up, lock eyes with me, and then comes the squirting sound….I wait, she relaxes, goes back to her smiley self…and then comes one more round of focus-like-there-is-no-tomorrow pooping from her. Quickly I pick her up (only holding her under her arms to ensure I don’t touch her full tushy or the hoover damn may burst) and take her to asses the damage.
Since about week two she never had a blowout at night…I mean never-ever-ever. Every night when she wakes up to eat, I change her simply because she taps into her inner niagara falls while sleeping, and ends up with a ten pound diaper by 2am. The only problem is that she HATES to be changed in the middle of the night, throws a cryin fit on me, so I’ve gotten pretty good at doing it quick-quick-quick.
So 2am rolls around last night and I have the golden ticket idea to just change her in her crib quick before I feed her. I’m all, she probably won’t even wake up and I’ll be back to bed in half the time because of my genius idea. As I get the wipe and diaper ready and walk over to her crib, I’m beaming with pride that I am adapting so well to mommahood…I turn her over and open up her diaper and what do I find but the hugest-most-biggest-blowout I’ve seen to date (ok…maybe not the worst, but still like a 6). Momma confidence deflated, I carefully pick her up, diaper half-open and all, and put her on the changing table…and the screams come…you know it’s a good blowout when you debate taking a picture just to have photographic evidence to show the mr. for the next morning. I was all, “look what I had to deal with…this totally earns me double momma points…” But I didn’t take a pic…because it was dark, and that would be just plain weird…kind-of…
Maybe she was getting back at her ‘rents since she went down so early and we actually got to watch an ENTIRE MOVIE sans baby girl.
Either way, it was an eventful night in the Fink household, poopies and all.
since then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated on the right hand of God. set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. for you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. when Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
working on living above this world right now. I like things in this world, and i find myself wanting more of things in this world. but God tells us to set our affections on heavenly things, where our life is truly found. as a follower of christ, i can’t love both the world and love God…they are at odds with each other, and my increasing desire for one will decrease my desire for the other. i’m not just supposed to have a heavenly perspective, but to live a heavenly life right now. my earthly nature inclines my heart and mind towards earthly things…but God is faithful and so worth my affections and my focus.
when christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Sometimes I wonder what I was really like back when I was single, and had little to no real responsibility in my life. I had no one to care for except myself, I spent hours alone, and spent my money on myself. As my joke goes with the mr…I did what I wanted, when I wanted, how I wanted.
It wasn’t until I was married that I started to more easily notice the sin in my life. When my life was joined with my husbands is when my sin started to come out…or maybe just when I started to notice it more. It’s as if when we first got married, we are both rough around our edges, jagged in our selfishness and stiff and stuck in our fleshly ways. God uses this relationship of man and wife to sand us down, smooth us out to be more like Jesus. God is glorified through our marriage as we die to ourselves in learning to love God and love each other, serve each other and help each other.
And when Lucia was born I began to have to die to myself even more, mostly in a physical way. Little ways of sacrifice, like sacrificing my sleep to wake up and feed her, and sacrificing time with the mr. to care for her needs. And I love taking care of her, and being her momma, loving her, but repeatedly I have to die to my own wants. At this stage it’s mostly physical things I have to sacrifice, but I just know that in the very near future it will be more. It will grow to be lying down my selfishness, my frustrations, my desire for other things, all to learn how God wants me to be a godly wife, a better momma, and how to grow as a follower of Jesus.
I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds
And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18
All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him
2 Corinthians 3:18
We first met Toya, or as we like to call her, Momma Yaya, just over two years ago in Haiti. We traveled to Haiti on a missions trip, and Toya was our group leader for the week. Our hearts were forever changed after that one week in Haiti. Our friendship with Toya started that week, and has grown ever since. She’s a strong, passionate, faithful woman of God, and is currently serving the Lord through being a missionary in Cameroon Africa.
I admire her passion for the Lord, and the way she truly listens for God’s voice in her life. She doesn’t settle for a stagnate walk with God, but intentionally seeks His will for her life, even when it means it’ll be uncomfortable. She currently works with young women in Cameroon to teach them abstinence and what it means to be a Godly woman. She teaches them practical things like making soap and cooking, this helps them make an income for themselves and prepare for being a wife. She also goes to the local prison and counsels inmates, and works with the local orphanage. I’m challenged and encouraged by her faith.
One of the memories with Toya that stands out from our time in Haiti was visiting an orphanage. It was a last-minute visit, and only 4 of us could go. We went to the orphanage, there were about 30 kids there, ranging from babies to 17 year olds. They were so excited for us to visit them, they hugged us, sang songs, and asked us questions. As we left that night they crowded around us, hugging us, touching us and telling us they loved us. My heart instantly broke for these children, no parents to love them, protect them, teach them and care for them, no family to be a part of. That night my heart was churning from the experience, I was wrestling with God on some things…I talked to Toya about it and I’ll never forget what she told me…how she can’t wait to see the family that God has for us in the future, that she can’t wait to see our ‘rainbow’ family, kids from all over, looking all different ways. Her words have always stayed tucked away in my heart. And now, as we started our family with Lucia, I can’t help but wonder what our other children will look like.
So when we heard that Toya would be in the states for a few weeks, we had to make it work to see her. She was staying with some friends in Chicago, so we set a date and made the two-hour drive last Saturday. It was so good to see her, catch up with her and have her meet Lucia. The body of Christ is a beautiful thing, we first met her over two years ago, haven’t seen or talked to her since (except for a few emails) and we picked up right where we left off. We shared stories of how God is working in our lives, we ate good food, laughed and listened to each other. I’m so thankful for moments like this, genuine relationships that God puts in our lives to encourage and challenge us.
Yesterday I finally uploaded all of the pictures and videos from my phone to my computer. I may have shed a tear or two as I looked through all the pictures of Miss Lulu from when she was first born. She is growing so quickly, and I cannot believe how big she is after only 2 1/2 months!
Just a few of my favorites from when we were in the hospital…
left: bundle of joy
middle: naptime with daddy
right: my first morning with Lulu
Motherhood is a strange thing…for 9 months I tried to prepare for what I thought motherhood would be like…but words can’t really describe how life has changed or the emotions that have run through me that I never knew existed until becoming a momma.
There have been amazing, beautiful and indescribable moments, and then there have been rough, ugly and messy moments. But somehow God eases us into being a momma with 9 months of sacrificing your body to grow a little baby, and then…after the baby is born, they sleep nearly all the time to help easing into the whole momma gig even more. For me, some of the hard moments came unexpectedly. I was adjusting to taking care of a little human, and I had to work at balancing my new life of being a momma, wife, friend, etc…
I expected not to get a lot of sleep, but I assumed the result of minimal sleep would just make me tired during the day. I figured I’d be tired, so I could just take naps to remedy the sleep I lost at night. But, what caught me off guard was how the lack of sleep took a toll on me emotionally. I felt like I was on an emotional rollercoaster that I couldn’t get off of, I would over-react to things I normally wouldn’t care about. I became weepy, and sort of felt like I was living in a tunnel, a constant circle of feed, sleep, poop, feed, sleep, poop. I love taking care of Lucia, but I felt overwhelmed at night-time, almost dreading it because I knew how little sleep I’d get. Everyone told me that the sleepless nights of waking up every 2-3 hours wouldn’t last for long, but while in the middle of it, it felt like an eternity. Slowly the nights got better, and Lucia started to sleep for longer stretches. Now she wakes up about two times a night, some nights more, some nights less, but overall I feel like we’ve made it through the worst of sleepless nights.
There were two things I researched endlessly before Lucia was born, breastfeeding and sleep schedules. I read books about this stuff, read blogs and talked endlessly with other mommas…I wanted to breastfeed my baby, and I set my goal for 1 year of breastfeeding. Thankfully, nursing has gone really well, and we had very little trouble getting Lucia to latch on, and my milk came in really quickly, and I haven’t had problems with not producing enough milk. I’ve thanked God over and over again for this blessing of being able to nurse Lucia. We haven’t had to use formula at all, she has only ever had momma’s milk, and I’m so grateful that it has worked out for us. I know that every baby is different, and that sometimes breastfeeding just doesn’t work, so I’m that much more thankful that this hasn’t been an issue for us.
The other struggle for me was how I tried to control her sleeping schedule. The first couple weeks Lucia slept almost all the time, then as she started to become awake for longer stretches, then I got ahead of myself and started thinking she was supposed to be on a strict schedule. I started treating her like she was a 4 month old, when in reality she was just a newborn. I expected her to be on a set schedule, all day, every day, and it just wasn’t realistic for her at that time. I overwhelmed myself even more by reading too many blogs and books, and started to feel like we were ‘behind’ in sleep training and that I was doing a crappy job at this whole momma-thing. I began obsessing over it, and it was all I could think about, constantly looking at the clock. My sister gave me some really good advice…stop reading the blogs and books, and just watch for the signs and cue’s Lucia gives you. I stopped watching the clock, and started watching Lucia…if she showed me she was tired by yawning, having droopy eyes or becoming fussy-I started to soothe her and put her to sleep. If she woke up from a nap and was content, I didn’t feed her right away, but waited until she showed me she was hungry. I stopped feeling guilty for letting her nurse herself to sleep or sleep in bed with us at times. I eased up on myself and started to change the way I thought…I started to think more in generalities than specifics…knowing she usually wouldn’t stay awake for more than an hour or two-I keep an eye on the clock and remembered what time she woke up. It’s been freeing to let go of such a strict mindset. We like to go out on the weekends, which means her naps aren’t the best, but I want her to be able to roll with it and adapt…sometimes after a busy weekend, Mondays are a little hard for her to nap, but by Tuesdays she’s back on track with sleeping. I know what our long-term goal is for her and her sleep schedule, and I’ve stopped thinking there is one narrow road to get there. I’ve realized that I need to ease up and not put so much pressure on myself, or on her-she’s a baby, and we’ll eventually get to more of a schedule with naps, and we’ll eventually get to her sleeping in her own room in her crib. But for now, we are content with where we are.
It’s all a learning process, and I’m sure-just when I think we’ve got one thing under control, another challenge will arrise…but I’m loving it!
Things are going well with the Little Missy. She’s sleeping well and has mellowed out over the past few weeks. Gone are her nighttime fussies…we are so thankful for such a chill and easygoing baby. Her only demise is her car seat, she hates car-rides and she lets us know of her hatred every time we put her in the car seat.
She blows bubbles constantly, smiles non-stop, and has started following us with her eyes as we walk around the room. She falls asleep fairly well and quick, and wakes up once or twice a night. She takes bottles during the day, and that helps cut down on the blow out diapers. She’s still sleeping in her pack and play in our room, but we have started putting her in her crib every so often for naps. I didn’t think it was possible for my love to grow even stronger for her, but somehow each day it does. At two and a half months, we are even more in love with her than the day she was born.
All this love has us talking about having more kids….