After Giving Birth: Part 2, Eat Like A Pig

Monday, March 31, 2014

Believe it or not, soon after I had my 4th baby my husband brought home 2 baby pigs he found out in the woods. Right then and there I informed him that I already had a  baby to take care of and that I was not going to be feeding them also. They were his responsibility! But I found myself more often then not drawn to their piggy squeals. I scoured the fridge for as many leftovers as I could find. Once there was any food in their reach they devoured it and gave full proof to their reputation as hearty eaters. The sucking and squealing noises that came from them were exactly what you would expect to hear from hungry pigs! Newborn babies sound very like those little guys when they are sucking and rooting for milk! I find myself calling them little piggy's also!

These  cute little bottomless pit's appetites were never satisfied.( Just in case your confused I am talking about the pigs;) They would scarf down any and everything!  As you might imagine we did not keep them long because they were literally eating us out of house and home!

I think I can be justified in saying bringing home a newborn baby is somewhat similar to feeding those baby pigs.

 Not only is your baby wanting to be fed 24/7 but you are going to be ravenous as well!

Your milk will not come in for 3 or 4 days at least and until then your baby will be drinking your colostrum which is the perfect starter food for baby. It is rich in antibodies and low in fat. I could go on and on about it, because it is amazing stuff but I wont because it will take too long! Lets just say God knew what he was doing when he created us to feed our new born babes.

The only complaint I have with it is that it is hard work to get out. You are going to be a full time feeding pump to your baby and they are going to be sucking it out of you non-stop until your milk comes in, so make sure you are comfortable and being taken care of. I never even bothered keeping track of my feedings because once I stopped they started again!

Remember this only lasts a couple of days. As soon as your milk comes in they will stay fuller longer and nurse for shorter amounts of time.

I have been extremely blessed to have been able to nurse all my babies without any complications or problems. Its just how it has worked out for me and I am so thankful! But I understand that is not the case for everyone. If this is so for you I am sorry but know that the most important thing is that your baby is getting nutrition, whatever form.

The best thing I heard after I started nursing was that once I put that baby to my breast I was going to burn 300-500 more calories a day!!! That's like working out everyday!!! My metabolism was in high gear ready to shed off those extra french fries, burgers and coke I had during pregnancy. Your metabolism will be too if you are able to breastfeed!!!

After each baby I have had I am always starving! Food tastes SO GOOD!!! Pregnancy has nothing on Breastfeeding munchies and cravings!!! 

You are going to need to fuel up on food as your baby is sucking all the nutrients out of you.

The first thing I want is a big smoothie and then I want  me some MEAT!

I have been very blessed to have meals brought to our family by our women's ministry at church and also friends and family. It is so nice to not have to worry about cooking for a couple of weeks and have more time to enjoy the baby. If family and friends are kind enough to offer meals make sure to take advantage of it!

I have to admit after baby is outside of me I am ready to take possession of my body back! I really look forward to getting back into my clothes and feeling fit and in shape. But I have learned that there is no rush. God made our bodies to naturally go back on their own.( of course exercising helps!)

You might not believe me but after I had my baby I was skinnier then when I got married! My hips might have changed but that little person seemed to just suck the fat out of me literally! I did run when I could but I didn't do anything crazy and I DID NOT diet! I ate balanced good sized meals and I  have always  had a sweet tooth when I am not pregnant.

I know everyone's bodies are different but this is just how it has worked for me and I realize I am very blessed. But I do want to say that after 2 months are up I do put extra effort into working out and shedding those extra pounds that didn't come off from nursing. 

I have been reminded with our latest addition that one of my first priorities in this newborn season (besides feeding the rest of my family, but they usually can fend for themselves;) is to feed the baby...and myself. I actually look forward to nursing and make a big deal out of it. You should to! Make sure you have something to drink, because once they start drinking you will be so thirsty. Like I mentioned earlier smoothies are the best for quenching thirst and getting lots of nutrients! If not a smoothie then at least have water or juice near by.  I  am thankful for my husband and kids who when handy can get me a drink if I forget to ahead of time.

Find a comfy spot where you can put your feet up, read or watch t.v...or just watch your beautiful baby! Since I am on my feet a lot so I take full advantage of milking up this time when I have a very good excuse to be sitting down. You do too! Enjoy it!

Once my babies turn into toddlers and the weaning process begins it is bittersweet. I am sad that they are not babies anymore and will miss our special time of boding but  I am excited to see them grow! I truthfully am usually ready sooner then they are to stop nursing. But when they are brand new snuggled contentedly at my breast I want time to stand still... and have a good excuse that I can eat like a pig!

What's your experience with nursing? Was it frustrating, or did it come very naturally?

Did you discover  new taste buds and cravings after giving birth?

linked up with mama moment mondays and babies and beyond

After Giving Birth: Part.1 Sleep Like A Bear

Monday, March 24, 2014

You have prepared for birth for nine months,  gone through the labor pains, pushed and puffed;  finally bringing your much anticipated bundle of joy into the world...what now??

After recently giving birth to my fifth child I have been savoring this precious, short time with my newborn.

It really goes by too quickly!( Just like everyone says!!) Babies just like everything else, don't stay new very long!

This is a difficult but wonderful time; learning to care not only for your helpless newborn but yourself as well.

God has made our bodies amazingly adapted for not only carrying life inside of the womb but also outside. But sometimes we forget this and second guess the natural gifts he has given us for mothering.

The animal kingdom is often better  at listening to their God given instincts then we are.

Here are a few we can take notes from:

My husband and children are witnesses that when mama doesn't get her sleep; she is one grumpy mama bear. You do not want to mess with her!

After going through the glorious but painful experience of birthing a baby, you are going to be extremely exhausted and  weak!

Get as much rest as you can!  The first few days after birth are critical to your sanity! You are going to need to hibernate!  Not only are you tired but your baby will be also. So take advantage of this time and sleep like there's no tomorrow!

I know you are thinking, "Sleep?? What's That?? I didn't know you could sleep after having a baby??" But the truth is, you can, especially the first few days after birth. Of course all babies and births are different but chances are they are going to be sleeping the day away, if not the night. It might not be exactly when or how you want it to be, but it will be sleep.

I know everyone and their brother wants to see you and that precious babe but don't be afraid to regain some of your strength before accepting visitors.

Since I suffered from insomnia most of my pregnancy I was actually looking forward to having the baby so I could sleep again! I think God was just preparing me for getting used to less sleep.

Most people think that people who have a lot of kids have them all at home but I have had all my babies in the hospital. My husband and I like that I am able to have a natural water birth with the comfort of knowing if anything went wrong, we are already at the hospital. I have to admit I think the reason I keep going back is that I really enjoy the extra rest I receive there.  I think I slept for almost two days straight after giving birth. Though you get poked and prodded quite a bit its so nice to be waited on hand and foot and not have to move from your bed.

 I have been very close to going to a wonderful birthing center in my area but the thought of having to leave after a couple hours after birth made me stick with the hospital. I know once I am home there will be a million things for me to tend to and I rest much better away from all the  things and people calling me to take care of them.

If you do have your baby at home and have other children to come home to I recommend if possible to get grandma and grandpa or close friends to care for them for a couple of days. Then Daddy can give you and the baby his full attention.

There are many schools of thought on where the baby should sleep but I believe you should do what feels best for and your baby.

I prefer to have the baby in bed with me the first couple of days. Not only to be as near  them as possible but because they have easier access to their feeding source...Me! I find that I sleep better when I feel them breathing next to me or else I keep waking up and checking on them to make sure they are okay. When I feel comfortable I start putting them in the bassinet when they fall asleep and when they wake up bringing them back into bed with me for the rest of the night. I find that swaddling them helps tremendously for keeping them asleep longer.

With your first baby it is a real shock to be sleep deprived because its never happened before  but I found that I could still get a lot of sleep during the day when he slept. I loved napping with my little guy next to me breathing softly.

Fast forward eight years and to baby number 5 and things have changed quite a bit. I don't know if I have gotten used to being sleep deprived or have just learned how to handle it better?

( Found this on Pinterest)  Make that 5!

I know everyone says to let things pile up and just sleep  during the day with the baby but if you have a big family like mine it's really hard to do! Believe me, I have tried to go to sleep with all the laundry piled up in my room but tired as I was I just couldn't fall asleep! Its like I am on a adrenaline rush!  Thinking about all that has to be done, dreading opening the door of my room to all the other messes that await me, not to mention my other very noisy children that I can hear through my paper thin door keep me awake. So if you are like me, put that baby in a sling, catch up on what you can, accept help or ask for help from friends and family. Then plan for Daddy to take the kids out and sleep...sleep...sleep!!!

If not, then by all means push the laundry off the bed and find a clean spot and crash!

Even if you don't get all the sleep you need, and you probably wont for a couple of months, its amazing how resilient God made our bodies!

There have been nights when the baby wakes up and I don't know how I am going to budge from the bed!  Somehow I do and once I am cradling that sweet, small frame I feel supernatural strength, joy and purpose, thanking God for once again entrusting me and my husband with this precious new life.

I might be lagging in the morning, with deep, dark, hollow circles under my eyes, groping for the coffee, wishing I could sleep for 12 uninterrupted hours straight. You know the kind of sleep where there is a pool forming on your pillow from the drool coming out of your open mouth. The kind of sleep you day dream about where you  finally fall into deep REM  sleep. But  if you can't,  make do with what sleep you do get and ask God to once again  to give you strength to somehow make it through another day and know this time is really so short.

linked up at mama moments monday

If you are already a mom how do you find creative ways to get sleep and how do you cope without it?

Not a mom yet? Do you have plans for your sleeping arrangements?

Those Dreaded Words

Thursday, March 20, 2014

We avoid them like the plague.

They are spoken in hushed tones, behind closed doors so as not to bring any unwanted attention our way.

When we hear them uttered from others, we back away slowly, turn around...and then RUN!!!

Those dreaded words...The Stomach Bug! You know you are shuttering too at the thought of it!

Stomach Flu, stomach virus, if you want to get technical the scientific name is gastroenteritis; whatever you call it... as  my son puts it, " Is no fun!!!"

One of the many dreadful things about it is that it is very contagious and quickly passes from one child to the next and if you have a big family like mine that can take about a week or more. But just as we think it has run its course and no one else is going to get strikes again without warning!

 One minute everyone is feeling fine and all is well with the world and the next minute you are searching for the nearest bathroom, holding your stomach; somehow trying to ward off the wrenching pain.

Yes, it is very devious!

We have even stayed away from others when we know its going around but that makes no difference to this indifferent bug it still finds us!!!

At least once a year we come in contact with those nasty bugs. Don't worry, they have come and gone in our house, hopefully never to be seen again at least not till next year.

As soon as the fluid starts to projectile from my children and myself, (my husband somehow stays untainted by it, somebody has to take care of us) I start to blame someone or something... and run to get a bowl, towels and the bleach!!!

We should not have gone there! Why did we do that?! I didn't wipe down the bar on the cart at the grocery store! I opened that door with my hands! Why did I let them play on the playground!!??

Though my reasoning's are valid and I desperately despise this form of sickness, the true culprit is not a place or person...but sin.

 Yes, sin!        We live in a sinful, fallen world. 

The newest born babe to the aged grey are not exempt from the toll  it takes on their lives. 

Along with the joy and pleasure we experience here; this world we live in is wrought with very real sickness and sin. Many of its forms far worse then this little stomach bug I speak of.

Some of you, like myself have felt the very heavy blow of fatal sickness on your family and friends.

 I don't believe there is anyone who hasn't experienced some form of sickness and pain in their own or a loved ones life.

 Sickness doesn't play favorites.

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't pray that God protects my family from sickness and harm.

 Though I do believe God can allow sickness in our lives as a direct result of  our own personal sin,(which is why I am careful to search my heart when sickness strikes and ask God to show me any secret sin and ask for forgiveness) he also can allow it in our lives as we strive to live blameless before him, often times to draw us closer to him.

The truth is... I don't know why God allows hard things to happen in our lives.

But I do know he is Sovereign...we can trust Him... and he loves us!!!

Whatever kind of sickness you are facing in your lives remember what the true culprit is and remember that your pain and suffering no matter how minute or strong doesn't go unnoticed by our creator.

Its amazing how  even though most of us know what  kind of world we live in, we continue to be shocked that sickness dares darken our doors, whether through a pesky bug, germ or mysterious culprit.

Many times I have thought of myself and my family as invincible...that might happen to other people but it wont happen to us.

 Words seem so feeble in light of the suffering that so many of us have gone through and are going through but I know that God is greater then our fears, our circumstances and our seasons of doubt, grief and pain.

I want to be clear that I am definitely not saying that we shouldn't use  lots of prayer, wisdom, precaution and common sense in not spreading and staying clear of unwanted germs...because we should! But keep in mind that this world we live in is imperfect!

The hope we have though is that Jesus is making all things new!!!...perfect!!!  We wait for that day  in expectation!!

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.  For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

If you were to see me around town you would still find me brandishing my bag of wet wipes as I approach a grocery cart,using my backside or elbows to push open a door, staying clear as much as possible of public restrooms and water fountains.

 And if you come to my house you will find me mixing up some herbal concoction, reeking of garlic with honey and lemon mixed in. Loading up on Vitamin C and Echinacea tea, hoping to discourage and ward off any unwanted ailments. But when things get serious I search for the motrin and am not hesitant to run to the Dr.

 I am still slowly learning that no matter what lengths I go to avoid those nasty bugs that come in the form of colds, coughs,  green goo, and  other unmentionable bodily fluids and functions; I have somewhat come to terms with the fact that we will inevitably be visited by them more then we would like.

But when the tears are flowing, the boogers are running, the coughs never ceasing, and tummies are aching, its easy to forget that this world is not my home. I cry out to God and ask him to help me and my little brood get through the  hard days and the long exhausting nights. He puts his gentle hand upon me, giving me strength where I have none and helps me  remember to fix my eyes on what is unseen... on Jesus who is preparing my future, perfect home where sickness of any kind will never be spoken or heard of  again!!!

I am so thankful that I can look to God's words when the words of this world are not what I want to hear or think about!!

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:4

I am linked up over at A little R&R and 3 D Lessons for life

I Messed up...Again

Monday, March 10, 2014

Today I messed up.

Today I did all the things I tell my children not to do.

Today I said things I should not have.

Today I did something really stupid.

Today I did what I determined I would not do.

Today I did what I know I shouldn't do.

I don't like messing up... I don't like being wrong.

I agonize it over in my mind how I could have done things differently. If only I had done it this way. Why did I have to go and do that!?

I know I am not alone, I know that you also struggle, that you don't always live a perfect life; that you don't always do what is right.

This gives me some comfort but it is still hard to admit that I don't have it all together, that I am not always a good example to my children; that I am just plain stupid and irresponsible at times.

We all have those days that we would just rather forget about and act like they never existed. We thank God that our mistakes and foolishness didn't end up as bad as they could have and like an ignorant child, promise to be better and never mess up again.

Of course this is impossible... we will never be perfect; never get things just right. We will hopefully learn from our failures and mistakes but there will always be new messes to get ourselves in to...there will always be our flesh to fight.

Even though I know this is true I somehow fool myself into thinking that tomorrow I wont mess up.

I love how Anne of Green Gables puts it,

  Yes, tomorrow is full of hope, hope that we can have another chance at doing things better.

I plan it all out in my mind..."Okay, so when I see that one person, I am not going to say anything wrong, I will hold my tongue and have a good attitude...when a certain situation arises I will remain calm, I won't get upset, I won't let my feelings overtake me, I won't lock the keys in the car again, I won't burn something on the stove again, I won't go over budget!"...etc..etc...

You know you do it too, you take  mental notes of those people that you don't want to be like and those attributes you don't want to be associated with. You try to learn not only from your mistakes but your peers and hopefully become a "better person".

I love looking back each year and seeing how I have grown. I pat myself on the back, congratulating myself that I am not like that anymore. "I used to be so narrow minded and look how I have changed! I can't believe I use to think and act that way! Boy was I immature!"

I honestly am thankful for the areas I have grown and matured in, it wouldn't be right if I didn't see any growth. The problem is, there is always going to be an area in my life to overcome; a difficulty to face, a bad habit to change.

But no matter how hard I try to do what is right, I determine to be perfect, I promise to never do that again...sin will be right there with me...and I just can not defeat it on my own. I will never be good enough, strong matter how hard I try.

This is where Jesus comes in; he does what I can not.

He points me to the cross and reminds me why he died on it.

 Because only he is perfect, only he is able to take upon himself the sins of the world, only he could take my imperfections and mistakes and wash them clean and forget about them as if they didn't exist.

He invites me to daily come to him and admit my wrong doings; to be transparent and vulnerable before him.

 As a gentle, loving Father he shows me where I am at fault, corrects me and then puts it completely behind him, never bringing it up again.

Unfortunately, I will mess up... again, but  that's okay because I know that Jesus will be right there when I do.

 "Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.  So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 

Thanks be to God--through Jesus Christ our Lord! " Romans 7:20-25

I Get To Do This

Thursday, March 6, 2014

I haven't been around here much lately and for good life is full and overflowing.

I have to make the most of every minute...literally.

It takes me a while to compose my thoughts into words so I  want to make sure I have something worth sharing when I do. But when the words start pouring forth I wont hesitate to let you know.

For now I am so thankful that my time is in high demand and I get to spend it with the ones I love.

So just in case you have been wondering why I have been so silent it isn't because I don't like this blogging world that I have joined, it is because my hands are full in the real world... and I wouldn't want them any other way.

 Though I complain a lot about all that comes with being a stay at home mom, because it is hard; its a calling, there are many days that I have to pinch this real?

 I really "get" to do this?

 Yes, I do and I have no regrets!



                                What do you "get" to do? I would love to know!
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