Tuesday, August 30, 2011

My Wiggle Worm

So I think I mentioned a few times while I was preggo that Gracie's a wiggler. She's feisty, and since birth has only gotten more so. She's rolling over now (but only in her sleep... I got a weird child) and trying DESPERATELY to crawl. In fact, she makes progress when I have her on a blanket over the hard wood floor. Did I mention she's not yet 4 months old? Frightening.
All this wiggling is having an effect, though. It's probably a "first time mom," don't-know-the-ropes yet, access too much information induced panic, but I worry all the same. We have a scale at play group and my sweet babe hasn't gained any weight in August. At all. Granted, she nearly doubled her birth weight in her first three months (7lb9oz up to 14lb14oz), but 4 weeks without a gain at her age is a long time. And she's started making a "Hey, is that all there is?" face after nursing. Sigh. I called her pediatrician and they said to track her weight every week and bring the record in to our 4mo apointment on the 12th. That it's "probably no big deal," but alas... I'm a mom. I worry. After all we went through to get nursing under way, having to suppliment would be a major stab in the heart.
Anyone else's babe hit a plateau and just not gain for a while?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

An Organized Life

My life is chaos. At least my baby's cute.

But no, really. Organization. I'm not, but I really want to be. And now that a little person is desperately trying to get from one side of the rug to the other (praise the LORD she can't quite yet...), I really need to figure this "keeping house" thing out, because honestly I don't have a clue.

My family's style of keeping house was, "What, someone's coming over? Grab the boxes!" at which point we'd begin a frenzy of throwing things away and shoving whatever was left into boxes which were then stacked in the garage to be dealt with "later" (Yeah, still waiting on "later" to come). We'd frequently still be scrambling when the doorbell rang. I knew I didn't want this to continue in my house but it's incredibly hard to learn how to stay neat when you're not sure where to start. My dear hubby has put up with a mess for long enough but now, with Grace DESPERATELY trying to be on the move, I've run out of time for excuses.

Oh no! Company's coming!

At my moms' bible study this summer, a couple girls were raving about The Fly Lady's system of keeping house. It's like a fad. Who doesn't want to be left out of a fad?! LOL. Her big concept is baby steps and starting with your sink, then building from there. My kitchen's been clean for about 2 weeks, and I've made my bed every day this week! That may seem silly to some, but it's a MAJOR accomplishment in this household. And, since about 6 other girls at church are trying to impliment some or all of the ideas from her website, I've got people (people who can stop in and see my house...) I can think out loud with.

My studying isn't quite as interesting as hers...

It seems to be working. My mother-in-law called me last week to see if she could come visit... she was a mile away and on her way anyway. I was able to look around, heave a sigh, and put away the one plate still on the counter. No shame in that! I was ready when she got here (3 minutes later). No boxes involved!

I won't bore you about learning how to clean; this is mostly a "where've you been?" post, plus an excuse to show off cute pictures of Gracie. My house is still messy, but I'm finally at long last moving in the right direction. I'll leave you with one last thought borrowed from The Fly Lady. It's brilliant, and so very motivating to me:

"Housework done incorrectly still blesses your family."

That's right. My mom's cool. And in her free time, she knits me dresses.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Practically Free Diapering

Have you ever realized at midnight that you forgot to run to the store to buy diapers, or if you cloth diaper, that you forgot to run a load and put your child to bed in the last clean diaper? Or you went out to run errands and miscalculated how many diapers you would need for the day? It's happened. What do you do? Letting Babe sit in yuck is, well, yucky; she can't really go without (ew); buying a package is inconvenient at best, unaffordable at worst... so what do you do?

I actually haven't been in this situation, but a board I'm on is doing a cloth diaper challenge this week specifically for those times when you've got nothing else on hand: The No-Sew T-Shirt Diaper!

That link will take you to a tutorial that shows you how to fold a regular T-shirt into a great cloth diaper. It really does work great -- I've done it a couple times just to see how it worked. I've got a bag of old Ts in my car and another in the basement as part of our emergency kits -- you never know when you'll need them. And if money is an object, but you still need to diaper your little one, you can hit the $5 bag day at your local thrift store and have all the diapers you could need!

Did I mention you can make your child's bum say whatever you want? Oh yes, Gracie loves Jesus... her diaper told me so ;-)

Friday, August 5, 2011

Creation. Literally.

A few weeks ago, Shaune, Gracie, and I were travelling away from home over the weekend. As is our custom, we visited a local congregation for worship. This is a congregation we’ve had the pleasure of visiting several times over the years. Although it isn’t a church where we would consider attending full time (if we were local), it has always been pleasant and never theologically questionable.

Until this trip.

I’ve hesitated to write this post, as I don’t want to come across to harshly. We truly love many of the people in the congregation. I do believe the pastor means well, but the particular teaching we heard raised so many red-flags... so many I’ve also heard from other sources, that I feel the need to address it.

The sermon was on taking the Bible literally. The pastor’s claim was that overall, no, we should not – the Bible is a collection of stories and teachings, many of which were for a particular season in history. He specifically pointed to the creation story in Genesis 1. He began his teaching with this (my paraphrase, as I was too in shock to write it precisely): “Now, many of us have issues with certain aspects of the Bible. Look at creation – most of us accept that the Bible can’t be literal here. Scientists have proven evolution.”

Wow. Really?

I’m not a scientist. I don’t read science journals. (However, this used to be an issue of doubt for my husband, so he has spent many hours researching both sides of the evolution-vs-creation debate. I’ve asked him to write a little post summarizing some of his findings – look for that next week ) What I do read, however, is the Bible. And what I’ve discovered is that when the Bible describes creation, it means it literally.

Creation is the starting point of the whole story. Without it, nothing else makes sense. Follow me along this train of thought:
• Without creation, humans evolved from monkeys
• If we evolved from monkeys, there is no Eden, nor is there an Adam or Eve… just a more “human” monkey somewhere along the way
• With no Eden, Adam, or Eve, there is no original perfection, no one to be tempted, no command to be obeyed or disobeyed, and therefore no original sin
• With no original sin, there is no need for a savior
• And if there’s no need for a savior, it’s an easy jump to Christ being nothing more than a good man and a moral teacher
Without Creation, there can be no purpose to the Cross. Are you with me?

Clearly the Gospel writers believed in salvation. They also believe in the original sin of Adam and Christ’s redemptive death. Here’s a sampling:
• “Sovereign Lord, you made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them…” (Acts 4:24)
• “For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay.” (Romans 8:20-21)
• “For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:21-22)
• “Now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:12)
• The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29)

I believe in a literal, final-form creation as prescribed in the Bible. Was it 6 24-hour days? I’m not sure, I wasn’t there (lol), but I do know that when God created, He created species as they are today. Humans were humans from the beginning. Fish were fish, cats were cats. (Variation has clearly occurred over the years, but that’s a different topic for a different day.) I also believe that if you don’t accept the reality of creation, you will forever struggle with the rest of Christianity. We need saved because we aren't what we were created to be. This is a line in the sand… literally.