Wednesday, May 26, 2010

This summer I would like to.....

1. Read! Thanks for the suggestions. Here's what I have chosen:

The Way of the Heart by Henri Nouwen
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Surrender to Love by David Benner
The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton
Grace-Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel

2. Get back in shape. Today I completed my second day of running since before Jace was born. Yikes. Well, you've got to start somewhere, right? There is nothing like an 80's cardio mix to get you moving! Jessie's Girl anyone? Hoping this hobby lasts longer than a week...

3. Complete a bible study. I mean seriously, if I believe the bible is the word of God and that God can reveal himself through his word then shouldn't I be spending time there? The bible study I've decided to study is Beth Moore's Believing God. Care to join me?

4. Create a garden. And keep it alive. I feel like my dad is a master at gardening. Seriously- have you seen his yard? Well, you should. It's lovely. I may have inherited his dark eyebrows, scheming ways, and love for roller coasters, but certainly not his green thumb. I am determined, though, to learn.

5. Improve my baking repertoire. I love to bake. Specifically, chocolate chip cookies. I remember many afternoons, coming home from school and being greeted with the aroma of melting chocolate. Mmmmm. Always homemade. Always delicious. And while I'll never turn down a warm gooey cookie (or 2!) I would like to learn how to bake other desserts just as scrumptious. Suggestions? Stay tuned for recipes and pictures.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Look at me!


Hey, mom! I'm just sitting here in my rocking chair reading my favorite book about baby's belly button!

Friday, May 21, 2010

My busy beaver!

Jace can officially stand in his crib! It's a very sweet/scary sight when I walk into his room now. Sweet because I'm so proud that he has mastered this new skill but scary because I'm slightly terrified he's going to find a way to fall out of the crib. I find myself listening for loud thuds when he wakes up crying in the middle of the night! Although as part of our continual baby proofing process we have recently lowered his crib mattress to the lowest setting and have removed his crib bumper.

Besides learning to pull himself to a standing position, Jace has also figured out his crib rail is the perfect chew toy. For all 8 teeth. Yuck! And my, does he chew it well. I wish I knew this was going to happen....why don't all cribs come with rail guards? So much for saving this crib for years to come......oh the things you learn as you go!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Grass vs. Grain: Which would you choose?

Confession: The hubby and I have recently become addicted to documentaries. Specifically, documentaries about food. Some of our favorites have been Food, Inc., King Corn, and No Impact Man. (All available via Netflix. P.S. Isn't Netflix the greatest??) Now, the unfortunate (or possibly fortunate?) thing I have discovered about documentaries is that they have this tendency to make you think about things you'd rather not. So, as a result of our latest addiction we have been forced to rethink our diets.

Did you know that the majority of beef produced and consumed in the United States comes from grain-fed cows? Maybe this doesn't sound so bad, but cows are grazing animals who were created to eat grass.

They were not created to live in crowded feedlots while consuming a diet primarily of grain.

It sure is nice to imagine all the beef we consume comes from cows who spend their days grazing through green grass under bright blue skies, but sadly this just isn't true.

But, why are cows fed grain instead of grass? Well, I have since learned, it is a cheaper and more efficient system. When a cow is grass-fed and allowed to graze it can take him 2 or 3 years to reach a weight appropriate for market. When a cow is grain-fed and contained in a feedlot he can be ready for market in as few as 15 months. Feeding cows grain certainly keeps the price of beef low, but at what other costs? Grain-fed beef is higher in saturated fats and lower in omega-3s than grass-fed beef. Also, since these cows are living in such close quarters they are continually and routinely given antibiotics to keep them healthy. This system also isn't very sustainable. The corn (which is the main grain in a grain-fed diet) being fed to these cows requires a lot of fossil fuel energy and grain-fed beef is also more polluting. When cows are grass-fed their waste drops back into the land, with grain-fed cows their waste just builds up, polluting water and air.

In our eyes, after watching these documentaries and learning this information, we have decided that choosing grass-fed beef seems to be the more humane, healthy, and environmentally friendly choice. So, as a result, we have decided to give up grain-fed beef with the eventual move towards a diet free from red meat (because grass-fed beef is much much more expensive and is also not a perfect system).

We know it won't be easy but are looking forward to the challenge and are excited to move towards, what we believe is, a healthier lifestyle. Stay tuned for more food adventures.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

Here is a sweet poem in honor of Mother's Day: (I'm not sure who the author is, but it is very sweet!)

Before I was a mom,
I never tripped over toys
or forgot words to a lullaby.
I didn't worry whether or not
my plants were poisonous.
I didn't think about immunizations.

Before I was a mom,
I had never been puked on.
Pooped on.
Chewed on.
Peed on.
I had complete control of my mind
and my thoughts.
I slept all night.

Before I was a mom,
I never held down a screaming child
so the doctors could do tests.
Or give shots.
I never looked into teary eyes and cried.
I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.
I never sat up for late hours at night
watching a baby sleep.

Before I was a mom,
I never held a sleeping baby just because
I didn't want to put her down.
I never felt my heart break into a million pieces
when I couldn't stop the hurt.
I never knew that something so small
could affect my life so much.
I never knew I could love someone so much.
I never knew I would love being a mom.

Before I was a mom,
I didn't know the feeling of
having my heart outside my body.
I didn't know how special it could feel
to feed a hungry baby.
I didn't know that bond
between a mother and her child.
I didn't know that something so small
could make me feel so important and happy.

Before I was a mom,
I had never gotten up in the middle of the night
every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.
I had never known the warmth,
the joy,
the love,
the heartache,
the wonderment
or satisfaction of being a mom.
I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much
before I was a mom.

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there! Hope your day is as special as you are!

I am spending my first Mother's Day at InterVarsity summer camp with my husband and son, other staff and their families, and hundreds of college students! Should be a good time :)

P.S. This was my Mother's Day present :)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Jace in action.

A crawling baby is exhausting! So far today Jace has found two new electrical outlets, chewed on the dog bone, played in the dog water, almost knocked over a lamp, chewed on the window blinds, chewed on a pair of crocs, chewed on a pair of sandals, and found every miniscule piece of dirt that was on the floor! Yikes. Thankfully, I am visiting my parents and have had some great help in watching my little monkey.

The advantage to having a crawling baby is long afternoon naps! This afternoon Jace slept for a full 2 hours (his usual naps are right around an hour) and woke up happy! I walked into his room and found him laying on his back in his pack-n-play staring up at his hands. When I called his name he turned towards me and laughed! Nothing beats a happy baby after a long nap. Bliss. Especially when there is enough time for momma to nap, too!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Jace can crawl! Well- it's more of an army crawl where he drags his body across the floor using the strength of his arms- but nonetheless he is officially mobile. Watch out world.

Stay tuned for evidence....

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Summer Reading List

It's always hard to decide which book to read next. Should I go with a best seller? Take that recommendation from my friend? Dive back into the classics? So many decisions! This summer, in hopes of alleviating some of the decision-making-stress, I have decided to create a summer reading list.

Here's what I have so far (in no particular order):

Water for Elephants
The Memory Keeper's Daughter
Freaky Friday
Into the Wild
Fahrenheit 451

Any other suggestions?