Archive | April, 2013

Reflections of a Soccer Mom

22 Apr

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For the past 10 days I have been a soccer mom to two of my cousins while their parents were away in Hawaii.  I thought it might be fun to share what it was like being a soccer mom from someone who actually isn’t in that stage of life yet.  I realize it’s coming and it scares me!

  • It really made me think about the future and how children’s activities can really impact a family.  My two cousins aren’t really involved in that many activities compared to a lot of other children.  One plays baseball and the other is involved in Girl Scouts and plays soccer.  They do not have any activities on Sundays which is wonderful.  At three years old Eli is only involved in a handful of activities: Sunday School, Wednesday Night Church, Flower Buds (a monthly class for 3-5 year olds at our extension office), and the occasional play date.  In the past he has also taken swim lessons and attended StoryTime weekly.  One drastic difference I noticed was that except for Wednesday Night activities, all of Eli’s activities happen during the day so our nights stay fairly open.  When we do have activities they usually start at 6:30 which allows us plenty of time to eat dinner as a family.  Our family attends church together on Wednesday evenings and the hubby works on Tuesday nights.  On some days a cousin would have practice from 5-7 which is right during dinner time.  I felt bad eating without the cousin who was at ball practice but by the time we would get home from picking him up at practice it would be 7:20 which is way to late to eat dinner.
  •  Honestly it’s been a year or two since I got up regularly at 6am (I much prefer 7am).  Most days I had to wake up both cousins and get Eli ready to go since I had to drive the kids to school.  I’m also pregnant and want to sleep all the time but I successfully got the kids to school ON TIME every single day.  Their school started at 7:25 which just seemed insanely early to me.  I believe my biggest accomplishment from the past week was getting the kids to school on time every day.  I had to call my mom up and apologize to her for all of the times that I got mad at her when I was late for school which was not very often.
  • Some nights you don’t get near as much sleep as you plan on!  One school night the dog set off the house alarm when he went downstairs.  I was jolted out of bed to the sound of the super loud alarm going off (not the regular alarm that goes off when you set off the alarm.)  The lights came on and the alarm company called to see if we were okay.  I was so embarrassed to tell them that everything was fine and that it was just the dog.  Then Eli woke up and started screaming from all of the noise and not knowing where his parents were.  It took about two hours for me to get back to sleep and then my cousin came in because she was scared (it was storming).  Nevertheless the kids were at school by 7:20!  🙂
  • Overall despite the early hours and crazy amount of driving around I had a nice time.  I’m sure if I were asked again I would probably say yes.

I have a new understanding when a fellow mom looks at me and shares that she is overwhelmed and exhausted.  Honestly I can’t imagine keeping up such a crazy schedule all of the time.  I felt like all I did was drive!  I have a good 2-3 years before we plan on contemplating Eli playing organized sports or taking lessons of any sort and for that I am incredibly thankful.  I will be treasuring the uncomplicated/simple days of my 3-year-old.  In fact I think I will go outside and see if we can find any bugs right now.  It sure beats driving!  🙂

 

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March Reads

11 Apr

 

 

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I have been trying to take it easy lately which means more time for reading!  🙂  I have also been trying to prioritize reading more books aloud to Eli.  This month Elijah & I read two books together: Farming with Father & Old Town in the Green Groves.  These are both chapter books which I read aloud before nap time each day.  I’m really hoping to continue reading more and more chapter books to Eli.  So far I think we have read 10 chapter books together.  You can see which books we have read together here.  I would love suggestions for more chapter books to read to him in the near future.  (He is 3 and all boy but loves books!)

Taking God Seriously by J.I. Packer: I’m a big fan of J.I. Packer so I was really excited to read his newest book.  Although he does mention the Anglican church often throughout the book the material is still relevant to all believers.  The chapters in the book all detail taking the following seriously: Faith, Doctrine, Christian Unity, Repentance, Church, Holy Spirit, Baptism and the Lord’s Supper.  I enjoyed reading this book and thinking through each of these different aspects of Christianity.  Honestly it has been a long time since I thought through all of these things.  If you are new to Packer’s works I would recommend starting with Knowing God which is excellent.  Please note I received a review copy from Crossway in exchange for this review.

 Raising Real Men:Surviving, Teaching, & Appreciating Boys: by Hal & Melanie Young.  As the title suggests this book is all about raising boys.  The authors have SIX boys so they know a thing or two about them.  I only have one son (so far) who is shall we say ALL BOY.  Despite the many accidents we encounter on a weekly basis and the never-ceasing energy he is an absolute delight.  I am so thankful that I found this book while my son is young.  What a blessing!  All of the advice in the book was wonderful.  We are currently expecting another child and everyone has been asking me if I am hoping for a girl.  Although I would be happy with a boy or a girl, I am almost hoping more that we have a boy.  I think boys are wonderful and would gladly welcome a house full of them.  As I’m sure you can guess this was one of my favorite books I read this past month.  If you have sons I would highly recommend it!

Big, Beautiful, & Pregnant: Expert Advice & Comforting Wisdom for Expecting Plus-Size Woman by Cornelia van der Ziel M.D.  As a plus-sized expecting woman myself I thought it was wonderful that someone had written a book specifically for plus-sized women during pregnancy.  I wasn’t a plus-sized girl during my last pregnancy so this book was especially helpful to me in thinking through some of the different issues plus-sized women sometimes encounter during pregnancy.

Learning to Love: Passion, Compassion, & the Essence of the Gospel by Heidi & Rolland Baker.  Unfortunately I was very disappointed with this book.  It is about the Bakers who currently serve in Mozambique.  The book itself felt very unconnected and did not flow together at all.  I honestly had a really hard time getting through this book and I love books about missionaries.  I also felt a little bit uncomfortable with many of the methods that the Bakers used.  Please note I did receive a complimentary copy from Chosen Books in exchange for my review.

Unbreakable by Nancy Mehl.  I am a big fan of Amish/Mennonite fiction but this book was a huge disappointment.  I found the whole plot to the story so incredibly far-fetched that it was hard to enjoy this book.  Most of the book was slow-moving and a little hard to follow at times.  I did find that the ending was surprisingly good.  If you are in the market for a good Amish/Mennonite fiction book I would pass this book up and find another one.  Please note that I did receive a copy of this book in exchange for my review from Bethany House Publishers.

Obamacare Survival Guide by Nick Tate.  I do not do a good job of keeping up with politics.  I do realize the potentiality of Obamacare to drastically impact my family so the issue definitely gets my attention.  We are currently expecting and also hope to have more children in the future so I know that healthcare will continue to be something I care a lot about.  I thought this book was great in clearly explaining many of the implications of Obamacare so that it can be understood.  I’m no expert on the subject after reading the book but I do feel empowered that I know much more than I did last month.  This book also has some great summary chapters at the end of the book that I would recommend anyone reading even if they can’t commit to reading the entire thing.

Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin.  The author is a well-known midwife who practices in Tennessee.  A close friend who has been blessed with 2 natural births recommended the book to me.  I’m so glad she did!  The first part of the book is filled with wonderful, encouraging birth stories.  I only wish this section were longer.  Although I can’t say that I would be comfortable with every technique utilized in this book I really enjoyed this book.  It was so unlike most other pregnancy books which tend to treat pregnancy like a disease.  I really appreciated Gaskin’s attitude about birth and pregnancy.

What books did you read last month?