Category: Uncategorized (page 1 of 8)

3.6.2017

It’s Monday and not my favorite of days but the kids are at their hybrid school and Viola is napping (Hallelujah!) and I have a moment where the house is quiet. I figured I would take a second to step back into this blog space and reflect on the weekend and things that have been happening around the Loving house lately.

We spent our weekend filled with friendship and community and fellowship and I realized (for the millionth time) just how much it matters to me to create a strong sense of community for our family. Between sleepovers, dinners at home with friends, and date nights out with friends we really got to soak up the friendships we have created this weekend. A simple Saturday dinner with 2 other families meant a house full of 13 kids and lots of noise to drive the neighbors crazy, but it was such a welcome and beautiful chaos that I sat snuggled up on the floor with a sleepy toddler and realized how precious these moments are to us and how wonderful the memories being made will be for our children.

“There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”  — Thomas Aquinas

Sunday meant church and worship and gathering again with those close to us who have share our faith but who also push us to expand our understanding of it and embrace the difficult spaces that sometimes come along with that. I feel a growing and a changing come along for me lately. A new chapter in my faith where I am learning more about who God is and who He has called us to be. As we explore Lent as a family and as a church we are being encouraged to really understand and embrace patience. If you know me in real life then you know patience is not my strength. I like to make things happen. Or make them not happen, as the case may sometimes be. In short, I am not good at idling. But, I am learning that God is not in a hurry. And so, it seems, I should start to recognize and embrace that. Most of the major mistakes and heartaches in my life come down to me trying to rush things. It absolutely never ends well. For Lent I decided to give up swearing. Which might seem like a silly shallow thing to give up. I don’t actually have a huge problem with “swear” words for lots of reasons but with a house full of kids I probably shouldn’t be doing it in the first place. You’re probably thinking there are better or more meaningful to give up, right? Except as I have experienced a week of mostly no swearing (I’m not perfect, y’all, but I am working on being better) I have realized how much those bits of profanity are evidence of a bigger picture. My impatience often is what leads to my frustration and eventual sailor-esque conversational habits. It’s a symptom of something bigger. And giving up on that immediate release of frustration has forced me to deal more with what is going on inside. Kind of amazing how something so minor can help you see a bigger picture in yourself.

So, yeah, patience. It’s a virtue I do not possess but one that I am working on. And I have this nasty feeling that even just putting that out there into the universe means I am going to get more than my share of patience testing this Lenten season but that’s okay. How else can I develop a skill other than by practice, right?

“Patience is the companion of wisdom.”   — Saint Augustine

Lest you think our weekend was all peace and friendship and worship there was another huge part of the weekend that our entirely family took part in. LAUNDRY. If you ever wondered where the world’s largest dirty clothes pile resides I can tell you with confidence that it lives in my house. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. So, yeah, don’t think for a moment our weekend wasn’t filled with the mundane wrangling of dirty clothes. It was and is and forever will be. Jesus & Laundry. The two constants in my life.

“Based on the amount of laundry in my house I am going to have to assume there are people living here that I haven’t met yet.” — Every Mother Everywhere

 

Essential Living Class Starting!

imageI’m starting a new online essential living class on Wednesday, August 17th. Learn the basics of using essential oils, how to make safe cleaners for your home, and how your whole family can enjoy the benefits of these natural oils!

This will be an all online FB class with videos and helpful info that you can do at your own pace! The cost for the class is $5 and you will receive two rollerball bottles of essential oil blends to try and enjoy. Message me to sign up and I will drop your bottles in the mail this weekend!

A Day in My Life: Orthodontist Edition

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I have five kids in the orthodontist’s office drinking the” free to parents only” cappuccino.

The two-year-old has “I’m a little butt.” written on her arm by a bigger kid.
The five-year-old is wearing the toddler’s shortie shorts and fur boots.
And the 7-year-old announces to the waiting room “I sure do wish our house was as clean as this office.”

Let’s just all take a moment to say the Serenity Prayer. And, Lord, please bless these folks who have to put up with us.

Amen.

The Seed and Soul Collective

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Let’s talk about essential oils!

I’m admittedly a dirty hippie type so it wasn’t too hard for me to be convinced of the benefits of essential oils. Still it took me a while to fully integrate them into our family’s life because I lacked the knowledge and support of other people using them to get me really using them to their full potential.

When my son was 6 he was plagued with a chest full of yucky warts. The hurt him and bothered him and we made three trips to the dermatologist for treatment with no success. We had an appointment for a fourth round of treatment but before our visit our pediatrician recommended we try a combo of Lemon and Frankincense essential oils on his warts. I was desperate enough to try most anything so we gave it a shot. I made him his own roller bottle of these oils in a carrier oil of coconut oil and gave it to him to use three times a day. I didn’t give it much thought until he walked into my bedroom two weeks later excited because all of his warts were gone! I was hooked from that day forward!

At the time I was using lots of different brands of essential oils but when I got more serious about it I started researching Young Living essential oils and loved their company values and commitment to quality. I started using them exclusively and have been thrilled with the amount of support and education they provide access to on all of their products.

I guess you can say I really embraced the whole “crazy oil lady” mentality and began to represent their product and introduce other moms and families to the benefits. It’s been one of the best decisions I have ever made for my family.

I love to share about essential oils and their benefits over in my private FB group, The Seed and Soul Collective. It’s a closed group for the oil enthusiast and oil curious, alike. Head over and join if you’d like to know more about how oils can be integrated into your family.

You can also visit my public FB page The Seed and Soul for a taste of the videos and info I provide if you’d like to check it out without joining the group. My favorite part of the group is the fantastic dialog that happens amongst the members, though, so I highly encourage joining.

If you’d like more info on buying oils (click here to shop!) or on why I chose to pursue the business side of things please feel free to message me! I love to talk about what led us to these decisions!

 

On grieving.

I’m finding the grieving process to be more complicated than I anticipated. What I want is to come to terms quickly with the loss we’ve experienced and wrap my heart around it and move on to happier days. That’s proving a bit difficult for a couple of reasons. First, it’s hard to grieve with a house full of kids and a life that doesn’t stop and wait for you to be sad. Pushing past emotions to get on with “life” has become the easiest way to get through the day. My kids need me. My husband needs me. My family needs me. And sitting on the couch reflecting on my feelings (as much as I think it might be good to do from time to time) just isn’t always high on the day’s priorities.

But, perhaps the biggest obstacle to the grieving process has been my body’s inability (or unwillingness) to let go. It has been 2 weeks since we found out the baby passed and 3 weeks since he or she actually passed away and still there is…nothing. Well, nothing except nausea and sore breasts and the heavy full feeling of early pregnancy. Every second. Every moment. I am distinctly aware of the  loss that hangs heavy inside me.

Last night I went for a second ultrasound. I had no real reason to anticipate a different outcome. But, I wanted that final closure. I thought that perhaps seeing that nothing had changed would allow my body to let go. I saw the baby again. Same size. Same small little body. Same quiet vacuum of a womb. I think because I knew what to expect it was more therapeutic. I had gone to a crisis pregnancy center because our insurance wouldn’t cover another ultrasound and they offered free ones and the thought of going to one of those happy places where you see your baby in 4-D was too unbearable. The moments spent in there with women who prayed for me were so compassionate and kind. They sent me home with a picture of the baby which was something I had refused at my first ultrasound. But I am glad now to have it. It’s funny how you collect these things with each child. I’ve never been good at baby books, but I do keep a baby box full of ultrasound pictures and congratulations cards and the celebrations of the life that friends and family send. I have the same collection started for this baby. I have a couple of congratulations cards and a few keepsakes. And now condolence cards. And an ultrasound picture. But I realized yesterday I have these things saved and no one will ever see them. Who are they for? Why am I keeping them? I can’t throw them away. But each baby box I create I have always planned to give to my children. Not this one. This one I hold onto forever. It makes this process seem so lonely and makes me realize the loss we’ve really experienced.

I had this vision of what a miscarriage looks like based on my two previous ones. And it never included carrying around my baby for weeks before my body let go. And I want it to be over which makes me feel guilty. And I don’t want it to be over because this will be the last time I will be this close to my baby. And that makes me feel like I’m a bit crazy. The whole process is confusing and schizophrenic and hard. So very hard.

I’ve chosen a natural miscarriage. I’ve chosen to wait and see the process to the end. Not exactly the home birth I had always dreamed of but I guess it is a home birth of sorts. But that means waiting. And wondering. And lots and lots of praying.

The prevailing question from my children throughout all this continues to be “why?” And for days I had no answer.

Why would God create a baby and let us love it and then take it away? I don’t know. But, after attending a recent Bible study about the nature of God, Thomas had an answer that was a balm to all of our broken hearts. There are flowers that bloom in parts of the dessert that will never be seen by a single living person. Why? Because sometimes God creates something beautiful and wonderful for His own enjoyment. I am choosing to believe that this baby is one such thing. A special life that is cherished and loved and created for God’s own enjoyment. This wasn’t a lost baby. Or a forgotten baby. No, this was a baby fearfully and wonderfully made to be a part of God’s kingdom. Just not this side of His kingdom. As sad as we are not to know this child, thinking about him or her and how they were created for God’s joy gives me great comfort and peace. And in this situation, comfort and peace are almost as satisfying as happiness. Almost.

Just a little housekeeping….

Since I’m thinking about being more present in this space again and stepping back into blogging, I’m taking care of some housekeeping around here. Because so many past giveaways included signing up for an email subscription as a mode of entry and since the scope of my blog is very different and will not include giveaways again I’m clearing my email subscriptions for two reasons. 1. It prevents all of you who don’t care to know the day to day life of my family from being subjected to my crazy stories and 2. It keeps me from having to get the unsubscribe emails that feel a little too much like rejection for my sensitive writer’s ego. : )

So, if you DO NOT want to continue to hear about the daily saga at Land of Lovings you don’t have to do a thing. I’m changing all email subscriptions effective today. But, if you know me in real life or want to follow my blog you’ll need to come back in a couple of days and resubscribe to continue receiving these posts in your inbox.

Thanks!

And now for something a little lighter…

Hooray for back to school time! Looking forward to this being a productive and exciting homeschool year…

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Previously on Land of Lovings…

Okay…its been a long, long time since I blogged. Here’s what you missed:

Juniper’s first Halloween (she was an owl!)

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And Traveler was Braveheart…

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My obsession with painting peg dolls for our handmade Christmas!

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2012 started with a bang and its been one wild and crazy ride but we managed to sneak away to Disney for a few days.

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We’ve celebrated birthdays for Traveler, Juniper, Kai and after one more birthday (Ivy!) in a few weeks we’ll get ready to plan the big summer birthday bash. I can’t wait to plan the party this year!

I’ve missed this space so much for the last few months and since my super sweet & talented husband gave my blog a make-over I thought it was about time I sat down and updated. I keep promising myself I will be better about updating. And hopefully it’s a promise to myself that I will finally keep…

I have something I need to tell you.

Here’s the thing I’ve learned in the past few months. Blogging is a lot like friendship. Both can be killed by dishonesty.

You see, something happens when you’re used to being fully transparent and you decide to dial it back. This big huge elephant enters the room. And it won’t leave no matter what. And suddenly talking about other things just seems pointless when there is this big huge thing you’re avoiding talking about. And so, you stop talking as much. Or at all.

I’ve got my own elephant in the room with me lately. Something I’ve been keeping from you. Something I’ve been keeping from lots of people, actually.

It’s nothing horrible or tragic or terribly dramatic. But its a secret I’ve had nonetheless. And secrets, as it turns out, are bad for blogging business.

Here’s my secret:

After a less than wonderful (and totally unnecessary) induction with our first child and two follow-up C-sections, we are attempting to have a home birth this time around.

Wow. Those words look a lot less scary on the page then I imagined.

Home births are controversial stuff. And there is a certain segment of the population that is nearly guaranteed to think you’ve lost your ever-loving mind if you decide to have one. (Hi, mom!) If you’re having one after two C-sections people tend to think you’re even crazier. (Though even ACOG is endorsing a trial of labor after 2 C-sections now.) And, so, I haven’t said anything about it to you guys. Or anyone else for that matter.

After we decided to go with a home birth, my plan was not to tell anyone unless they specifically asked. My response to the question of where we were having the baby was always, “Well, the OB who backs up my midwife delivers at such & such hospital. So, if we use him it looks like we’ll be there.” Not a lie. But not 100% the truth.

But, here’s the thing. I hate keeping secrets. It feels so much like lying. And 7 months of home birth prep have been interesting. There is a ton of fantastic blog material just waiting to burst out from this type of experience. It’s just hard to talk about when you don’t relish the idea of people thinking you’re a lunatic. I’ve explained it this way to the few people I’ve actually fessed up to – I’m crazy enough to think this is a great idea and mainstream enough to realize how crazy it sounds. Its not a comfortable place to be in.

Nonetheless, I’m trying for a home birth. And, despite my reluctance to shout it from the rooftops, I’m thrilled as can be about it. And nervous. And praying I can actually accomplish it without having to go into the hospital mid-labor. In other words, there has been a lot on my mind.

By this point, you’ve probably fallen into one of three groups. 1) People who think I’m insane. 2) People who think I’m doing a great thing for my baby. 3) People who wonder what they ‘re doing on this blog in the first place. If you’re in one of these groups, believe me I can totally relate. I’ve thought all those things at one time or another.

In the end, this is the choice we are going with. My prenatal care has been nothing short of amazing and the only thing I feel has been lacking is the frustration of sitting for hours in a doctor’s waiting room only to be rushed through my appointment. I’ve had ultrasounds, lab work, necessary blood tests and everything I would have gotten in a more “normal” situation. I truly believe my midwife is an incredibly capable woman and my faith in her is absolute. Now, I just need to work on having faith in my own body’s ability to birth this baby. After three births full of medical interventions it is taking a lot of reprogramming to understand how birth actually works and to redefine my ideas of normal. But, it has been an amazing learning experience and regardless of whether we have a successful home birth or end up in a hospital due to circumstances beyond our control this process has been both educational and empowering. It isn’t a journey that is for everyone but it is the right journey for me at this time in my life. And I can’t wait to follow it through to its completion.

I should mention that it took me 30 minutes to write this but an entire week to work up the nerve to hit publish. I can be such a scaredy-cat  about honesty sometimes…

First Birthday. First Sugar High.

I love first birthdays. And Traveler? He loves first birthday cupcakes.

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For more Wordless Wednesday head over to 5 Minutes for Mom!

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