Wednesday, May 27, 2015

My Number One Parenting Tip

I've been parenting for a while now, and while I don't usually toot my own horn about this sort of thing... I've gotten pretty good at babies. 

After 5 in 5.5 years (including twins), you can't help BUT be good at babies!

So I get a fair amount of questions asking for baby advice, and while I try my best to be helpful, when it comes down to it all babies are different (even my own! Even the ones born within 11 minutes of each other!) and there's just no one-size fits all parenting advice I can offer!

Except one thing...

Wait a few weeks.

That's it.

Baby sleeps all the time? Barely stays awake long enough to stay latched, then falls asleep nursing and nurses all day long?

Wait a few weeks! He'll be looking around, checking stuff out, and you'll miss those hours and hours when you could just sit snuggling the  baby and reading a book!

Baby insists on staying up until the wee hours of the morning, causing you in your sleep-deprived state to have a little fun at the baby's expense? Prime party hours!

Wait a few weeks, and baby will have the whole day vs. night thing sorted out. And you'll have some awesome pictures to blackmail her with in the future.

Baby is constantly pulling up on the furniture, then falling immediately and bashing her head, no matter how strategically you place the pillows around her?

Wait a few weeks! Her balance will improve, the pillows will be unnecessary, and the bruises will fade.

Baby insists on spending every waking moment being walked around the house, causing you to have a permanent hunch in your back from the constant bending?

Wait a few weeks! She'll be running. And so will you.

I can chalk up the majority of baby "issues" to teething, growth spurts, or that's just how the baby is at this stage. Sure, sometimes there are more serious issues that ping your mom radar, and you work with friends and doctors to get those settled. 

But most of the time? It's just a matter of waiting a few weeks and letting things sort themselves out.

Mary's Mantle is a home for homeless expectant mothers in the Detroit, Michigan area; Rakhi gives a beautiful description here, and they need your help! 

The mothers who come to reside at Mary’s Mantle come from all walks of life. Some are recovering addicts, some are recovering from the scars of past abortion, some have been prostitutes, some have been in pornography, some have been victims of domestic violence, some come from the churches in our neighborhoods, most have damaged relationships with their families, and all have been broken by abuse, whether emotional or physical. The time they spend in residence is designed to heal and restore them. While our staff work with them to address the causes and symptoms of their homelessness (job training, housing searches, education, therapy, etc.), the greatest work done is to teach them about the love of God, help them to begin healing, and provide an example of how to be faithful mothers so they can break the cycle of abuse. 
After renting for years, they were able to purchase a permanent home for their ministry, but have experienced financial setbacks in the moving process. Can you spare $5, $10, or more to help these courageous mothers who have chosen life for their babies against all odds?

You can support them directly through their website or you can donate through their GoFundMe page. Here's some extra information about their finances just so you know you're not giving money anywhere sketchy. 

Even if you can't support them financially, please pray for the families Mary's Mantle serves, and the staff and volunteers who are devoting their time to helping those in need!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

What I Wore Pentecost Sunday: Coral & Gingham

Happy Pentecost! 

Well, Pentecost Tuesday...  It's taken me a while to finish this post, so I'm just going to make it quick!

Here's what I wore. We had a fairly well-behaved Mass from the older two kids & Mary Claire while the others stayed home with Andrew. The major issue was Mary Claire's frequent LOUD and long kisses (which include mushing my cheeks together and forcing me to give her open-mouthed kisses - always fun when we're sitting front & center, but Father generally avoids looking at us so I'll pretend he didn't notice?).

Sadly, my only red items of clothing are only winter-appropriate, so I decided coral was close enough?

The kids DO have red, though!

I had good pictures of everybody else but my memory card keeps randomly deleting pictures, even when I've reformatted it recently... It's also kind of falling apart, so maybe it's time to get a new one? I *did* just get a credit from Amazon's affiliate program which will cover one, so I guess it's time to put blog earnings back into the blog!

Thanks for supporting this blog when you shop through my amazon links - maybe next time I won't lose those adorable pictures of Peter stuck under the couch!

Linking up to Fine Linen & Purple for What I Wore Sunday - Happy Tuesday!

Friday, May 22, 2015

What They Said, Volume 17

While I was prepping dinner:

Elizabeth: Mom, what are you makin'?

Me: Asparagus!
Elizabeth: JUNIOR Aspawagus???

While I was trying to listen to a podcast between Simcha Fisher and Jen Fulwiler...

Elizabeth: Mom! Is da yady talkin' about AngeYINA (ballerina)???


At the dinner table...

Elizabeth, angrily: May Cyaire, weMEMber??? You eated owegano fwom da GAHden!!!

Elizabeth brings a pot over to me...

Me: What did you make?

Elizabeth lifts the lid: I nunno...
Me, seeing two toy cakes: Is it... Cake soup?
Elizabeth, angry: NO! It's YEFTOVERS!!!

Overheard in the back yard...

Elizabeth: I'm big and you're yittle.
Mary Claire: No, I'M big and YOU'RE little.
Elizabeth: We're BOTH big!
Mary Claire: Ya! We're BOFE two and we're BOFE big!!!

Elizabeth: Do re mi...
Mary Claire: NO, do re Me!
Elizabeth: NO, do re MEEEEE!!!
Mary Claire: Do re EVEWYBODY!

Can you tell their parents are musicians?

At bedtime...

Me: Okay, Mary Claire, should we pray a Hail Holy Queen? Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy...
Mary Claire, angrily: Hail Holy Queen and Hail Mawwy are my BEST PWAYERS.
Me: Well I'm glad you like them... To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve...
Mary Claire, giggling: What's "AVEEVE?"
Me: Of. Eve. Like Adam and Eve.

Mary Claire finishes praying while doing some sort of macarena...

Mary Claire, trotting down the hall: I'm just goin' to da bafwoom... To turn on da light... To look at my eyebwows...

Aunt Sister: Mary Claire, who's your favorite sister?

Mary Claire: Cecilia!
Aunt Sister: And who's your favorite brother?
Mary Claire: Peter!
Aunt Sister: And who's your favorite Aunt?
Mary Claire: Um, a black ant!!!

I hear they're the tastiest...

Cecilia, cheerfully: Mom, which twin do you think will die first?


Cecilia: Mom, WHY is St. HELENA always holding the Cross in pictures? Why didn't she just MAKE her own cross so I could find the REAL cross???

Me: Wow John Paul, you must really love science!
John Paul: Yeah. ESPECIALLY hydrogen and oxygen.

Cecilia is holding her hands like a heart around her face...

John Paul: Are you doing that because you want me to be your valentine?

Cecilia: NO!!! I'm GOD'S valentine!

John Paul: I'll publish a book about President Gerald Ford and President Obama speaking... Speaking... Speaking about... I don't know!!!

I predict a best seller.

John Paul: Ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh! Ooh OOH!!! Look what I found!!!

Me, thinking it must be candy or money: What?
John Paul: An Allen wrench!!!

To each his own?

And that's all she wrote.
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