8/28/2015

Back to Normal-ish!

Yesterday was the first day I felt normal-ish since the miscarriage. I can't totally explain it, but it was like someone flipped a switch or something. It was a very noticeable difference. I remember thinking, Hey! I don't feel like every. little. thing. is going to send me OVER THE EDGE! Hallelujah!!

I was really feeling like I couldn't handle very much. Like I was a ticking-time bomb. :( But I feel sooo much better now! It must've been the hormones? I don't know. I'm just glad things are back to normal. ish.

Although, nothing's ever really normal, amIright?

I hope the next time I'm *in* something, I can learn to relax a bit and not try to fix everything. I think I often do that--when I'm in a rough season, I can't see the forest for the trees, and I try to MAKE EVERYTHING NORMAL. Well, that doesn't work when there's a man down, so to speak. I should've cut myself more slack, given the kids more grace(!) and taken it easy a bit more and realized that the season wouldn't last forever.

You live, you learn, right? I'm thankful for that! :)

His mercies are new every morning!

~~~~ 

Here are a few pics from a local Deer Park we visited. The kids and I had so much fun!





One thing that I continually find interesting is the fact that I have to keep Littlest from mauling the animals (read: he LOVES them) when Oldest was hesitant to walk in the park at all at first! She got over it, obviously. :)













8/23/2015

Our Pause Button Update

Last week, I decided to put school on PAUSE and work on obedience and good habits. The kids needed some work too. ;)

I'm happy to report that things are going a little better. Not perfect, mind you! There's still a good amount of bad attitudes and whining. And the kids aren't perfect either. (Are you sick of that joke yet?)

A photo posted by Catie N (@catienewby) on

But seriously. I'm glad I made the decision to stop school and work on relationships.  And all joking aside, the Lord really has been working on my heart. One thing I was reminded of: It is only in the midst of our weakness, that God can reveal His strength and our need for Him.

The last few weeks have shown me that I need Him so much. I can not do this (wife, mother, teacher) alone. It is so easy, especially in our culture, to coast along without thinking we really need God.

But oh my. We do. 

Middlest at a local Deer Park--more pics to come soon, I hope!

And after talking with a friend in the same season of life, I realized that I'll have to settle for mediocre sometimes. What I mean is, I may not always be able to start school with the dishes done, the house picked up and laundry started.

And we may have days (weeks) where attitudes just aren't right, but we'll have to keep on going anyway. I don't know about you, but these are actually comforting thoughts to me. If I know ahead of time that I need to keep going even though all my ducks aren't in a row, I feel better than if I set myself up for perfection and not can't come close! Does that make sense?

 Don't you just wanna eat him!? Me too!

This week, starting tomorrow, we'll slowly, very slowly add in a reading or two and maybe a couple of other things. I think we just tried to do too much, too soon. We'll keep working on our routine and our attitudes and I'll be clinging tightly to God's Word and praying for wisdom! He is faithful! 

I've also been thinking about the importance of what some call "Mother Culture." I realized that I really haven't been fueling up, so to speak. I do wake up and have a Quiet Time most mornings, but I don't really do much that inspires me these days. (Other than read, of course, which can be enough sometimes!)

That said, I've picked up my knitting needles again and it feels so good. I really need to make sure I'm taking care of myself and doing more than just school and housework(!), so I have more to give to my children. Do you struggle with that too?

Here's the hat I've started for Middlest: You can find the pattern here. 

A photo posted by Catie N (@catienewby) on
 
~~~

I'm doing much better with the loss of our baby. But I'm still not at 100%. I have a picture of the ultrasound on my fridge that I can't bear to take down. And I still really feel the loss. But every day it gets easier.

I had a good talk with Oldest 2 days ago--turns out she really feels the loss still, too. But after sharing my pain with her and telling her that's part of why Mama hasn't been acting herself lately, she shared with me that she's still upset. It was a good talk. :) I so appreciate your prayers! Let me know how I can pray for you!

8/19/2015

My thoughts after 3 days of school OR It just ain't workin'!

Whew! We started school this week (today was Day #3!) and it's been a doozy! At the risk of sounding melodramatic (Ahem) I've decided to stop school. I know, I know. It's only been THREE days, but really, the bad behavior has been going on much longer.

I'm not exactly sure what the deal is around here. Maybe it's because I haven't been present for the past few weeks (what with being really sick and losing the baby and all) or maybe it's something in the water.

Either way, what we have goin' on right now just ain't workin'. (I said that with a southern drawl in my head. Not sure why.)

Moving on.

I've decided that what we REALLY need to work on, instead of reading, writing and 'rithmetic are {good} habits and obedience. And by "we" I mean "them." Sort of. *I* could probably use a lesson or two in obedience. Ahem.

I just can NOT afford to be stressed out about getting a day's worth of school done all while trying to work on training the kids. It's just. too. much.


The atmosphere around here stinks and it's mostly my fault.

It is *my* job, as Mama, to make sure that the atmosphere in our home stays where it should--it should be conducive to learning and growing together. That responsibility should not fall on my children, although there are days that by looking at me you would assume otherwise. :/ I accept full blame.

Right now, it's ME against THEM and something's gotta give. I've decided that "something" needs to be school so I will feel the freedom to STOP what I'm doing and train and correct my children and help them and come along side them to help them develop good habits.

The beauty of it all is that it really won't put us behind. We start school a little earlier than most and we can school through summer if we have to.

I will be sitting down with the Littles tomorrow and explaining our new plan--that we are going to work on saying, Yes, Mama and doing our chores without complaining and doing our very best to get along with each other. And when I start to see a little improvement (I know it will never be perfect!) we can start up school again. I'm willing to wait as long as it takes. Because my relationship with my kids is more important that 2+2 right now. And presently, Mama is crabby ALL THE TIME because there doesn't seem to be any order around here! Hmph!


Here's our new schedule: the Daily No-School Routine

It may seem like a lot of chores, but really the girls can do all of these things in a short amount of time. I know because they have done it! And to be honest, I'm laying it on kind of thick because I want LOTS of opportunities for the girls to say "Yes, Mama!" Practice makes perfect-ish, right?

I should mention, too, that I only have 1 Read Aloud time scheduled, but that I plan on spending more time with them than is on the chart. Free times will include me sometimes playing with them or reading to them. I just can't promise that I'll always be able to do that, so "Free Time" it remains.

If you think of it, I'd love any extra prayers you can throw my way! I'm praying desperately for wisdom and for the Holy Spirit to work in my children's lives, because at the end of the day, I can't change their hearts--only Jesus can. I can help steer it in the right direction though.

What about you? Have you ever had to put school on hold to work on a habit or two? (or ten?) Please say you have! It'll make me feel so much better! ;o)

8/17/2015

Pixie Cut!

Oldest has been asking us for a Pixie cut for about a year or so. I finally caved. :) She really has a sensitive head--brushing her hair each day was a chore, people! And she's wanting to be more independant and take showers all on her own, and having shorter hair will definitely help there!


But most importantly, it's cute. ;o)

Before:

 During:

After:

What a cute little Pixie! ;)

8/15/2015

Still not out of the woods

This last week has been... interesting. I'm having a harder time with this miscarriage than I did last time in 2012, before we had Littlest. I'm not exactly sure why. I definitely had more of a peace about the whole thing last time. And I wouldn't necessarily say I don't have peace this time, it just feels like more of a loss.

I feel so deflated and like there's something definitely missing from me. Part of it may be that I found out so early that I was pregnant. I had 6 weeks to think about names, knitting a hat for the new baby, what dynamic this new person would bring to our family, wondering how my children would welcome this new baby and all the other plans that everyone makes when they find out they're expecting.

Another thing I think has been more difficult is the time it took for the whole process to be over. I thought I was losing the baby on Thursday evening and Saturday night while I was in the ER, we SAW the heart beating on the ultrasound THREE different times! There was always a small glimmer of hope! It wasn't until the following Tuesday that I found out for sure that we had lost the baby. Up until then, I thought it would maybe be ok.

There were so many up-and-downs, emotionally speaking. I feel like I'm still not out of the woods; like I need more time to heal.

So for the last week I've just been laying low. I've also been very emotional and a bit cranky. I won't be winning any Mother of the Year awards, that's for sure.

I'm hoping to start school next week and hopefully that will kick us all into gear and back into some kind of routine. The kids need it so badly. So do I.

If you've miscarried, have you found that some miscarriages were harder than others? It's funny--when you start mentioning miscarriage, you find out it's much more common that you would think.

It has made me so thankful for the beautiful children I do have. Children really are a blessing. And I hope I never take that for granted.

8/11/2015

Quick and Sad Update

Well, I made the mistake (again) of announcing our pregnancy a little too soon. The trouble is, it's hard for me to hide.

We lost the baby over the weekend. I went to the ER on Saturday with a severe subchorionic hemorrhage--which is how all miscarriages start apparently. But not all SCHs end in a miscarriage; most women carry the baby to full-term.

I, however, didn't. We lost the baby and we're sad but we're doing ok.

God is still good.

8/05/2015

Ramble (Whining) and News!

Mind if I ramble (whine) a bit? Thanks. If you can't whine and complain on your own blog, then what good is it?

I'm feeling a tad overwhelmed right now. We're still trying to sell our house which means we have to show it once in a while (and I really mean ONCE IN A WHILE--tomorrow will be our third showing since April. *sigh*). But still, before each showing the house needs to be somewhat presentable. And again, I really mean "somewhat." I keep my expectations quite low.

Even so, you know that saying, "Cleaning the house with small children is like shoveling in a snow storm."? That pretty much sums it up for me.

It's even VBS week at our church so the two older girls are gone every morning from 9 to noon, but I STILL can't get the house in order. In my defense, I was sick from Saturday to Tuesday. :/ Don't ask.

On top of that, we're supposed to start school next week, so I had planned on using this week, while the girls are gone, to plan our year. Instead I was laying on the couch from lack of energy, among other things. (Don't ask.) and now I'm trying to clean. *hysterical laughter*
 
On top of THAT, I'm about 8 weeks pregnant.

I'll let that sink in for a minute. ;)

So far, so good in terms of how I feel (no morning sickness! yet.) but I'm exhausted. *yawn* And maybe a tad cranky. Pray for my kids.

Don't get me wrong! I'm SO excited for this baby! (yes, "it" was planned.) And I WANT to sell our house! And I love homeschooling!

But today I'm tired. And a little overwhelmed.

I know God has a plan, I and I know that I know that I know it will be ok. It always is. God always works everything out for good. But I'm still human and am hopefully allowed a little whining once in a while. ;o) I'm praying for the peace that passes understanding right now. And time for a nap. *yawn*


Here's my belly at 7 weeks. Wait until you see me at 9 months! (Even *I* can't believe that picture.) I hope it's not gonna be another 10 pounder!! :/