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Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

Tomorrow GTB graduates from preschool.  Yes, they call it graduation even though he’s not moving on to anything else.  He will be back in the same place doing the same thing next year, he will still be only three years old, and he will probably still be getting stickers for going pee in the potty.  So we’re looking forward to what this graduation ceremony holds.  As Amber put it today, they keep finding new ways to celebrate mediocrity (can you name that movie?). I figure, if nothing else, this graduation ceremony celebrates a year of survival.  I’m pretty sure Miss Kathy is shocked she made it out alive, and I’m honestly a little bit surprised GTB made it out alive as well.  Here are some of the things GTB survived at school this year:

1.  Roid Rage.  Last fall, GTB reacted horribly to some steroids the pediatrician had prescribed him.  Needless to say, it was a loooong fall for us, his teacher, and him.

2.  Playground Bully.  Early this spring, GTB was crying almost every time I dropped him off at school.  He kept asking me if a certain boy was going to be there and telling me that he was scaring.  I figured…I’m sure this kid is acting crazy just like all the other 2-year-old boys in the class.  Turns out, that every kid in GTB’s class and in the class below his were terrified of this little boy.  Sad case.  We spent a lot of time praying for GTB to be brave and for this little boy to meet Jesus…and a lot of time wiping tears off of GTB’s face.  In mid-February, the kid left for vacation (or “gay-gay-tion” as GTB calls it) and never came back.  The rest of the school year was much easier.

3.  Mulch….GTB hates mulch…really, really hates it.  The whole playground at his school is mulch, and GTB would wig out anytime we left school and he had mulch still stuck to him.  He also would report to me every single time a kid threw mulch at him (although I’m sure he failed to tell me how frequently he threw mulch at other kids).

4.  Being in a different class than Eli.  GTB’s best friend in the whole world got put into the class above GTB’s.  GTB was so sad to not be with him.  As the year progressed, they got more and more used to it…and compensated by yelling “Tooty Booty!” every time they saw one another.

5.  The Christmas program.  Normally, GTB loves to be center stage, but apparently, he prefers to be solo.  He was unimpressed and unexcited about participating in the Christmas program the school put on.  He sat to one side and rolled his eyes as he watched the other kids sing.

For all the things he survived, Toodus and I were just reflecting on how much he’s grown in a year.  He has gotten over so many of the things that were annoying about the two’s – wanting every that we had, fighting over toys, accidentally wetting his pants – and he’s become more and more fun to be around!  He is hilarious at telling jokes, he is everyone’s best friend (no joke), he’s getting better and better with his manners, and he is becoming a really great helper.  Even though GTB’s not technically graduating, we sure are excited for the chance to celebrate him.

His first day….

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Sweet and Sleepy

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The following is a post from Jason Kovacs on The ABBA Fund Blog.  I hadn’t thought much about the recession in terms of abortion or adoption, but this post is definitely convicting.

The Chicago-Tribune recently reported that as a result of the economy providers of reproductive services say they are fielding more calls from distraught women facing difficult decisions about pregnancies they didn’t plan and can’t afford. Further,

More women are struggling to afford contraception and that, in some cases, they are risking their physical and emotional health by delaying abortion procedures for weeks as they seek a way to pay the cost.

One married woman told the Tribune she and her husband made the painful choice to end her pregnancy because they could not afford a third child. But the family’s insurance doesn’t cover abortions, and not until her 14th week could they pull together enough money to pay.

Abortion rates have been declining for years, and experts said it is too early to know if the nation’s financial woes will change that trend.

But Planned Parenthood of Illinois says that in January it performed the highest number of abortions in its history. (The agency has a policy against disclosing the actual numbers.)

Other articles are reporting similar findings. As the economy worsens abortions are on the increase.

I think the implications for the church are massive. We have an opportunity to stand up and save lives or swim with the current of our culture of self-preservation. There is no difference here between the women who are killing their babies because they don’t believe that they can afford to raise them and Christians who think they have no responsibility in caring for these babies. The root of both is selfishness.

That said, the article does share some good news. Calls to adoption agencies and pregnancy resource centers have increased as well.  Just this week I received two emails about the need at adoption agencies for adoptive couples because of this increase.

Will God’s people stand up and volunteer to meet this increased need at their local pregnancy care centers? Will Christians refuse to allow finances to hinder them from stepping out and adopting these children whose mothers are placing for adoption? Will the church open its doors to the children in foster care?

I love to dream of the day when we could fill the Washington Mall with a million Christian families who are willing to adopt every baby being considered for abortion and every child waiting in the State foster care system. I can’t help but think we need to get started on this. All it will take is one couple at a time. One by one. One church by one church getting a vision.

The Tribune goes on to mention the National Network of Abortion Funds, whose members raise money to help women pay for abortions. They say calls to state and local affiliates from women seeking financial assistance have increased from 50 percent to more than 100 percent in recent months. Calls to the national office, which provides referrals, have almost tripled from a year ago, said network Board President Toni Bond Leonard.

Until reading this I did not know these organizations existed. I am not surprised but freshly reminded that the need for ministries like ABBA Fund, Caroline’s Promise, Shaohannah’s Hope and the many other organizations that raise money to help families adopt is greater now than ever!

In conclusion, Steve Trombley, President of Planned Parenthood of Illinois said, “These economic hard times are forcing people to make the tough decisions and ask scary questions of themselves. Should I pay the mortgage or put food on the table for my family? Can I pay for basic health care and necessary medication? Can I afford to have another child?”

Those questions should never have to lead to abortion! We should have enough money, support, help to provide an alternative, no questions asked! O Lord, have mercy on the women in these situations, the babies in their womb; and move your church with mercy like never before to provide the alternative and help they need.

May it not be said that the church was simply wise during this recession with how it spent its money and did ministry. May it be said that the church spent more and gave more and did more than ever before because they knew the value of life and the reality of eternal life!

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Goodnight My Angel

GTB has proven to be a really crazy sleeper.  Not a “bad” sleeper necessarily, but definitely not a good sleeper.  We’re pretty sure our boy will always be plagued with bad dreams, sleep walking, and general restlessness.  While this was frustrating at first (and still is at times), I’ve realized that there are some precious moments in putting him to sleep or getting up with him in the middle of the night that I won’t have the opportunity to share with him forever.  Its brought joy (and a lot of tiredness) to be able to rock him, sing to him,”pack his back,” and comfort him.  He has picked his favorite lullabies (Bill Joel – “Goodnight My Angel,” Tom Petty – “Walls,” and the Christmas Song – “O Holy Night), and now whenever I get done singing to him, he tells me, “Good Song Mom!” or “Yay Mommy!”  At one o’clock in the morning, those are the best words of encouragement a mom could ever hear!  Parenting is hard…but there’s joy in hard moments.


GTB’s transition to sleeping in a big boy bed (which translates to “sleeping anywhere BUT his crib):

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(amazingly, GTB fell out of bed…flat on his face…and never woke up)

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(GTB and Eli discovered that jumping on the bed is AWESOME!)

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(on Halloween, GTB decided he LOVES to sleep on couches…he would rather sleep on a couch than anywhere else)

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(he snuck out of bed a few weeks ago…collected all those toys/animals…and climbed back into bed)

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(we rarely see moments when GTB is sleeping like a sweet normal child…we take pictures to give ourselves hope that he’s not totally insane)

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(did you notice something missing from this picture?  that’s right…GTB’s head which is hidden underneath the blanket)

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(GTB asleep two days ago with all his nasty pink eye-ness)

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(as I’ve been typing, GTB snuck out of bed and is currently asleep on the kitchen floor which is definitely a more logical place to take a nap…he’s been sleeping soundly for an hour..I think I’ll leave him)

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As the Lord is teaching us more and more about marriage and parenting, we are learning how little we know and how valuable the community of believers around us is.  There’s a reason that God calls us to train our children within the context of a church, and its absolutely because we need the wisdom and the guidance of those around us to help us train our children well.  Our friend, Kimberly, began posting a series of blogs regarding parenting, and they have been invaluable to my parenting of GTB.  If you are a parent, are about to be a parent, or think that at some point in the future you just might be a parent, you should read these blogs.

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GTB and Kimberly’s daughter, Sally

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