7 Quick Takes: Dad-Fueled Sugar Binges, Summer Reading, Baby Gender Predictions, & More!
You know Daddy’s been doing the grocery shopping around here when this finds its way into your kitchen:
That was not on my list. My kids may be starting to think this bed rest thing for mama isn’t so bad after all.
Well, from the guesses after this post, it looks like we have a few more people suspecting this baby is a boy. My mom gut is telling me absolutely nothing except that if this baby does end up coming prematurely, it might be better if it’s a girl since medical literature suggests little, white boys can be wimpier.
If you haven’t shared your prediction yet, go ahead and divulge.
Fall soccer registration is already in full gear. (Is this summer flying by for anyone else?) I’ll have two little girls on the field this year. It will be Rae’s first season playing. I only allow my older kids one activity per season in order to keep life less chaotic, and I gave Rae the choice between more dance or soccer. Without any hesitation, our pink-loving, girly-girl chose soccer. My kids never stop surprising me.
Let’s talk books, shall we?
I recently raved about Dr. Meg Meeker’s new book,The 10 Habits of Happy Mothers: Reclaiming Our Passion, Purpose, and Sanity*. I saw that Hallie Lord (alias Betty Beguiles) mentioned devouring Elin Hilderbrand’s books. I wasn’t familiar with the author, but Hallie describes her books as being “simple, easy beach readin’ [with] good storytelling,” so I’m thinking I might add some to my wish list. Light, beachy reads sounds just wonderful right about now.
Reading for Believers recommends the suspense novel Room. Per Mrs. Darwin, “The basics of the plot: a young woman and her son held in captivity, narrated by the five-year-old boy. I flew through the book and made Darwin read it as well so that we could talk about it. I’m a squeamish person and was very wary of the subject material, but Emma Donoghue handles her narrative with an exquisite sensibility.” I’m very intrigued and plan to read this as soon as I finish Peace Like a River by Leif Enger (which is also a novel told through the eyes of a child, although this narrator is 11). I’m about halfway through with the book (which I’m reading based on a recommendation over at Faith & Family LIVE) and enjoying its lyrical style, setting (the story takes place in rural Minnesota in the early 1960s), and compelling characters.
What about you? What books have been a part of your summer reading?
*If you’ve read or are planning to read Dr. Meeker’s newest book, Elizabeth Foss will be hosting a book study over at her site starting next Thursday.
Melanie recently shared a quote her sister-in-law has on her fridge:
“Suffering in life is inevitable. But misery is optional.”
I’ve been thinking about those wise words a lot lately.
Have you ever noticed how different people handle suffering? I’m not trying to judge here, and I believe we all should feel it’s okay to cry out when we’re hurting (Jesus did in Gethsemane, didn’t He?), but does wallowing in misery buffer the pain at all? And the key here is wallowing. Most of us have probably invited ourselves to an occasional self-pity party. I know I have. But at some point, I have to leave my little corner and embrace my suffering – even those small toothpick crosses (e.g., sleepless nights, screaming children, trails of crushed Cheerios, etc.) that can feel heavy at the end of long day – with grace.
It also personally helps me to laugh even when I or a family member is in a passion.
My parents were the ones who taught me the value of keeping a sense of humor – in good times and in bad. They’ve laughed (and prayed) their way through some pretty trying times (sicknesses, loved ones dying, children fighting drug addictions or eating disorders, etc.).
One recent example: My mom has had to start taking some medications with some pretty potent side effects (nausea, extreme lethargy, etc.) to help treat her recently diagnosed trigeminal neuralgia. Oftentimes, the facial pain and the extreme fatigue completely knock her out, and this is not a woman prone to sloth. Given her recent lassitude, my dad and I were joking about how they’d be rejected from one of those older, active adult communities.
“Mom makes Nana look like an active adult now,” Dad joked. (Nana is his almost 90-year-old mom who will gladly admit she moves more slowly than a sloth. She’s earned her rest.)
Mom laughed. She almost always does. Misery is an option she has refused to choose. I hope I can do the same no matter what suffering life has in store for my family or for me.
Okay, so we got to see our baby during an ultrasound this past Wednesday. In my past pregnancies, one ultrasound was the standard, but it has been fun to see this little one so much. The ultrasound tech commented on how much hair he or she had. “See all that? It’s long, too,” she said as she pointed at the back of the baby’s neck. Even my untrained eyes could see strands of what looked like hair spilling down almost as far as what appeared to be the babe’s neck.
My husband and I then mentioned how both Rae and Mary Elizabeth were born with full heads of dark, dark hair, but that Madeline was born with lighter, old man hair. She had a decent amount of coverage around her neck but only a very light dusting of fuzz on top.
“Really?” the tech said. “Well, I haven’t checked the top of the head yet.”
She tried to get the best angle she could and when she did, we saw only baldness. “I don’t see any hair on top yet.”
So Billy Bob (that’s what my dad is calling this baby) has a mullet. Faaaaannnntastic.
“I’ll be sure to bring clippers to the hospital,” Dave joked.
Now aside from lung maturity and avoiding any stay in the NICU, we want Billy Bob to stay put for a few more weeks so he or she can grow some hair on top.
I just want to give a grateful shout out to everyone who has blessed our family with your prayers and support in recent weeks. My mom is back home after her angiogram and brain aneurysm repair. When I talked to her the evening of the procedure, she said she felt too good to be in the ICU. She rocks.
That same day (this past Wednesday) I received my own good news and had another negative fFN test at my prenatal appointment, which will likely buy us another two weeks. The ultrasound I had not only revealed our baby’s funny hairdo, but that he or she is measuring beautifully and is estimated to be just over 3 pounds. This is very good news since I typically have smallish babies, and we want to fatten this one up in case he or she arrives ahead of schedule.
Unfortunately, the little guy or gal’s head is so low, the ultrasound tech was unable to get an accurate measure of my cervix length (a transvaginal ultrasound was not possible because of the fFn test). After my midwife did the swab for the fFN, she examined me and discovered my cervix is almost completely gone (i.e., fully effaced), and I’m continuing to dilate. She wants me to continue to take it easy because she says the contractions are causing changes. I know from past pregnancies that all of these measurements aren’t foolproof seers. This baby will come when he or she is ready. All I can do is take care of myself and the baby the best I can, trust and follow my midwife’s advice, and wait.
Thanks to Jen for hosting, for giving me an excuse to talk about some really random stuff, and for indulging my pregnancy-induced navel-gazing.
Have a wonderful weekend!