Monday, June 30, 2008

More pics of Edmund

Edmund trying out his sling

A flower arrangement sent from the church.

Ok, I'm not sure who took this photo because no one will fess up. But alas, here's a taste of what my days consist of...

Cassandra for some reason has developed a strong maternal urge since she met Edmund. Here she is with her swaddled baby Edmund.

The cute

Grandma & grandpa E. holding their precious new grand baby.

Benjamin is just thrilled to have a new little brother. He loves every chance he gets to hold him. Cassandra loves him too, but she hasn't quite mastered the concept of "gentle" just yet.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Win the Essential Babywearing Stash

Click on this link to enter the contest. Winner will receive 5 different baby carriers! Entries must be received by July 31, 2008. Winner will be announced no later than August 10, 2008. Good luck!!!

The Sin of Having to Know

Came across this article in one of my Yahoo! groups. A good reminder...

The Sin Of Having To Know
-Author Unknown

1 Timothy 5:13
And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not.

This passage refers to the temptation younger widows encounter when they have no husband at home to provide the ballast they need to be home-centered. But certainly, other women in the Christian community are tempted to be busybodies as well. It may sound harmless, but Scripture ranks this sin with some of the big ones.

1 Peter 4:15
But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters.

What is a busybody? In this passage, she is a woman who delights in other people's business. Instead of being focused on her own home, her own duties, her own family, the busybody is interested in everyone else's business. A busybody is "busy" gathering and passing on information. Of course, saying, these things is sinful, but knowing them may be equally sinful.

Let's back up and examine how a woman becomes a busybody. First, she must learn idleness, as our text says. But how does a woman learn idleness? The image seems contradictory! I suggest that it is learned by studiously avoiding the duties God has laid out for her. The budding busybody must shirk her domestic duties for the more pleasant task of "visiting."

The woman Paul describes is wandering about the neighborhood. It is far easier to leave unfinished duties behind than step over them. The women the busybody visits can't see her laundry pile or the dirty kitchen floor. As the busybody wanders from house to house, she is far from idle: she is busy gathering information about everyone else's affairs.

Does the modern busybody wander from house to house? You bet. She goes here for coffee and there for lunch. She's charging around town, dropping in and checking up. The news gathered at stop one is repeated with relish at stop two. This also provides her with lots of prayer requests for Bible study or prayer meeting.

Of course, the modern busybody is not restrained if she doesn't have the means to wander about town. She has a more convenient method - the telephone. The modern busybody can be very "busy" on the phone for hours a day. This sort of idleness may produce weariness, but it doesn't produce the fruit God requires. A woman's God-given duties must necessarily be neglected
to carry on such extensive visiting.

How does the busybody conduct her visits? She asks many questions and is a keen listener. She asks questions that are meddlesome and interfering. But she seldom gives offense because she seems so genuinely interested. No detail is insignificant for her. She delights in passing on "tasty morsels" and offers much information (about others) without being asked. Since her head is so full of "other people's matters," much of what is fact and what is hearsay is easily blurred. Now she has become not only a busybody, passing on the "news," but a gossip passing on rumors.

Meanwhile, is the laundry done? Is dinner planned? Can she really afford all this time?

A few cautions come immediately to mind. First, ask yourself if you are a busybody. IF YOU ARE WORKING HARD AT HOME FAITHFULLY DOING YOUR GOD-GIVEN DUTIES, THEN YOU WILL HAVE LITTLE TIME FOR SUCH FOOLISH BEHAVIOR.

Nevertheless, recall your recent conversations.

Have you been too involved in "other people's matters"?

Do you ask questions that are really not your business?

Do you pass on information about other people's affairs?

Do you delight in being the first to know and the first to tell?

Second, do you have a friend who is a busybody? Take care. You may be drawn into her bad habits. Don't listen to her repeat all the news. Excuse yourself from inappropriate conversations.

Do you have a regular group you meet with to "visit" and fellowship? Is the conversation often about other people? Perhaps you should withdraw from such a group.

Finally, if you know someone to be a busybody, keep your distance. Be careful what you tell her. Assume that everything you say will get around the community. That should motivate you to exercise discretion. Be careful what you say, especially about your husband. Be sure your comments are always respectful and kind and God honoring.

That sort of news isn't nearly as much fun to pass on.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

More pics of Edmund


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Here's Edmund!

Here's me in labor at about 7:30pm yesterday.
(I'm only smiling because I'm inbetween contractions!)


Here's Edmund snuggling with his new night-night animal.


For some reason he looks red and splotchy in this pic. His skin is really a rather nice olive color but I can't seem to get my camera to show his true complexion.

More pics to come!!!

It's a...

BOY!!! Edmund Perry D. made his grand appearance last night at 11:47pm! He weighed in at 7 lb.s even and measured 19 in. in length. Uncomplicated labor and delivery. Perfectly healthy son. He's got dark hair and dark skin just like his daddy. We'll have pics posted later today... but we just wanted to let you know our new son is here!!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Labor update

I had false labor yesterday...
All day I had been spotting, although it was "old blood" (as the midwife referred to it). Had Braxton-Hicks contractions all day. Then around 10:30pm I started having painful contractions. We hesitated on making a big deal about them because they were 15, 20, 30 minutes apart. Nothing regular or terribly painful. I finally went to sleep around midnight and contractions stopped altogether.
This morning, I feel fine. No signs of labor at all to tell about.

We'll continue to post updates as they come!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Cinnamon Buns


Gooey yumminess.
(Pretend it's low-fat ;-)


Cinnamon Buns
Dough:
1 package fast-rising dry yeast
1/2 tsp. + 4 Tbls. sugar, divided
1/4 cup warm water (105F-115F)
3 cups flour, divided
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
3 Tbls. butter, melted
1 large egg

Filling:
6 Tbls. melted butter, divided
2 Tbls. sugar
1/4 cup finely chopped almonds, pecans, or walnuts
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 Tbls. cinnamon

Drizzle:
3/4 cup confectioners sugar
2 tsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla

1- In a small bowl, start the dough: combine yeast, 1/2 tsp. sugar, and 1/4 cup warm water. Stir and let stand until foamy (about 5 mins).

2- In a large bowl, combine 1-1/2 cups flour, 4 Tbls. sugar, and 1/2 tsp. salt.

3- Add 1/2 cup milk, 3 Tbls. melted butter, 1 egg, and the foamy yeast to the flour mixture. Beat on medium speed for 2 mins. Mix in (by hand) the remaining 1-1/2 cups flour to make a soft dough. Knead dough on floured surface until smooth and elastic, adding additional flour as needed. Return to bowl, cover, and let sit for 10 mins.

3- In a small bowl, start your filling: 2 Tbls. sugar, 1/4 cup nuts, 1/4 cup brown sugar, and 1 Tbls. cinnamon. Roll the dough into a 12x10-in. rectangle. Brush dough with 3 Tbls. melted butter. Sprinkle the sugar mixture on top. Roll the dough up tightly from one long side. Cut the rolled dough into approximately 12 slices. Place in a greased (or non-stick) 13x9-in. baking pan. Brush the buns with the remaining 3 Tbls. melted butter. Cover, let rise in warm place for 30 mins. Bake for 20 min.s at 350F.

4- Prepare drizzle: Mix 3/4 cup confectioners sugar, 2 tsp. milk, and 1 tsp. vanilla. Drizzle on top of slightly cooled cinnamon buns.


*RD really likes the insides of his cinnamon buns to be super-gooey. So next time I'm going to up the proportions of ingredients for the filling. He also likes LOTS of drizzle so I'm going to double the drizzle recipe.

40 weeks!


So today is "technically" my due date... but this little critter isn't showing any signs of its arrival just yet. As soon as labor starts, we'll be sure and post the news here!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Another homebirth article

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, June 16, 2008

Father Knows Best Meets Big Brother Is Watching Physician Group Seeks To Outlaw Home Birth- Is Jail For Mom's Next?

WASHINGTON, D.C.

(June 16, 2008)- Just in time for Father's Day, at its annual meeting last weekend, the American Medical Association (AMA) adopted a resolution to introduce legislation outlawing home birth, and potentially making criminals of the mothers who choose home birth with the help of Certified Professional Midwives (CPM's) for their families.

"It's unclear what penalties the AMA will seek to impose on women who choose to give birth at home, either for religious, cultural or financial reasons- or just because they didn't make it to the hospital in time," said Susan Jenkins, Legal Counsel for the The Big Push for Midwives 2008 campaign.

"What we do know, however, is that any state that enacts such a law will immediately find itself in court, since a law dictating where a woman much give birth would be a clear violation of fundamental rights to privacy and other freedoms currently protected by the U.S. Constitution.

"Until the AMA proposed 'Resolution 205 on Home Deliveries,' no state had considered legislation forcing women to deliver their babies in the hospital or limiting the choice of birth setting.

Instead, states have regulated the types of midwives that may legally provide care.

Currently, 22 states already license and regulate CPM's, who specialize in out-of-hospital maternity care and have received extensive training to qualify as experts in the types of risk assessment and preventive care necessary for safe and high-quality care for women who choose to give birth at home.

Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM's), who are trained primarily at hospital-based providers, are licensed in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The Resolution did not offer any science-based information for the AMA's anti-midwife or anti-home birth position.

"Maternity care is a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States," said Steff Hedenkamp, Communications Coordinator for the The Big Push for Midwives.

"So it's no surprise to see the AMA join the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in its ongoing fight to corner the market and ensure that the only midwives able to practice legally are hospital-based midwives forced to practice under physician control.

I will say, though, that I'm shocked to learn that the AMA is taking this turf battle to the next level by setting the stage for outlawing home birth itself- a direct attack on those families who choose home birth, who could be subject to criminal prosecution if the AMA has its way.

The Big Push for Midwives
(http://thebigpushformidwives.org) is a nationally coordinated campaign organized to advocate for regulation and licensure of Certified Professional Midwives (CPM's) in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and to push back against the attempts of the American Medical Association to deny American families access to safe and legal midwifery care.

The Business of Being Born II

Found this news article on the BOBB website. Insightful. Thought I would share!


BREAKING NEWS FROM BOBB HEADQUARTERS

At their annual meeting over the weekend, the American Medical Association voted on two Resolutions that seek to prevent home births and to increase MD control over midwives (click here to read Resolutions 205 and 239).

The initial draft of Resolution 205 included a personal attack on Ricki Lake and our film "The Business of Being Born" which read:

Whereas, There has been much attention in the media by celebrities having home deliveries, with recent Today Show headings such as "Ricki Lake takes on baby birthing industry: Actress and former talk show host shares her at-home delivery in new film..." (for full text of the original Resolution, scroll down to 205)

News outlets including the AP quickly picked up this story yesterday as it hit TMZ, E!, USA Today, Daily News, FOX, and Ricki will be featured on Good Morning America this weekend as well. (If you Google "Ricki Lake, AMA" you will see the bloggers are all over this!)

Filmmakers Abby Epstein and Ricki Lake teamed up with journalist and Pushed author Jennifer Block to pen the following response for the Huffington Post and also submitted a seperate Op-ed to the Washington Post this morning:

DOCS TO WOMEN: PAY NO ATTENTION TO RICKI LAKE'S HOME BIRTH

Ladies, the physicians of America have issued their decree: they don't want you having your babies at home with midwives.

We can't imagine why not. Study upon study have shown that planning a home birth with a trained midwife is a great choice if you want to avoid unnecessary medical intervention. Midwives are experts in supporting the physiological birth process: monitoring you and your baby during labor, helping you into positions that help labor progress, protecting your pelvic parts from damage while you push, and "catching" the baby from the position that's most effective and comfortable for you—hands and knees, squatting, even standing—not the position most comfortable for her.

When healthy women are supported this way, 95% give birth vaginally, with hardly any intervention.

And yet, the American Medical Association doesn't see the point. Yesterday it adopted a policy written by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists against "home deliveries" and in support of legislation "that helps ensure safe deliveries and healthy babies by acknowledging that the safest setting for labor, delivery, and the immediate post-partum period is in the hospital" or accredited birth center.

"There ought to be a law!" cry the doctors.

The trouble is, they have no evidence to back up their safety claims. In fact, the largest and most rigorous study of home birth internationally to date found that among 5,000 healthy, "low-risk" women, babies were born just as safely at home under a midwife's care as in the hospital. And not only that, the study, like many before it, found that the women actually fared better at home, with far fewer interventions like labor induction, cesarean section, and episiotomy (taking scissors to the vagina, a practice that according to the research should be obsolete but is still performed on one-third of women who give birth vaginally).

Which is why the American Public Health Association supports midwife-attended home birth. The British OB/GYNs have read the research, too, and have this to say: "There is no reason why home birth should not be offered to women at low risk of complications... it may confer considerable benefits for them and their families. There is ample evidence showing that labouring at home increases a woman’s likelihood of a birth that is both satisfying and safe..."

The other trouble with the American MDs is that they seem to have lost all respect for women's civil rights, indeed for the U.S. Constitution – the right to privacy, to bodily integrity, and the right of every adult to determine her own health care. The "father knows best" legislation they are promoting could indeed be used to criminally prosecute women who choose home birth, say, by equating it with child abuse.

Research evidence be damned, the doctors want to mandate you to go to the hospital. They don't want you to have a choice.

We think they're spooked. The cesarean rate is rising, celebrities are publicizing their home births (the initial wording of the AMA resolution actually took aim at Ricki for publicizing her home birth on the Today Show!), people are reading Pushed and watching The Business of Being Born, and there's a nationwide legislative "push" to license certified professional midwives in all states (The AMA is against that, too, by the way).

The docs are on the defensive.

After all, birth is big business—it's in fact the most common reason for a woman to be admitted to the hospital. And if more women start giving birth outside of it, who will get paid? Not doctors and not hospitals.

"The AMA supports a woman’s right to make an informed decision regarding her delivery and to choose her health care provider," the group said in a statement. But if it really supported women's birth choices it wouldn't adopt a policy condemning home birth and midwives.

Because if U.S. women are to have real birth choices, everybody needs to be working together to provide them, not engaging in turf wars at their expense.

Late yesterday, the AMA changed the wording on the final resolution 205 to omit the line about Ricki. (Hmmm...) They are now attributing the original language to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) who drafted the initial statement.

Stay tuned for more news to come....

The BOBB Team


Here's the Resolution 205:

AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION HOUSE OF DELEGATES

Resolution: 205

(A-08)

Introduced by: American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists

Subject: Home Deliveries

Referred to: Reference Committee B

(Craig W. Anderson, MD, Chair)


Whereas, Twenty-one states currently license midwives to attend home births, all using the certified professional midwife (CPM) credential (CPM or "lay” midwives), not the certified midwives (CM) credential which both the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM) recognize[1]; and

Whereas, There has been much attention in the media by celebrities having home deliveries, with recent Today Show headings such as “Ricki Lake takes on baby birthing industry: Actress and former talk show host shares her at-home delivery in new film” [2]; and

Whereas, An apparently uncomplicated pregnancy or delivery can quickly become very complicated in the setting of maternal hemorrhage, shoulder dystocia, eclampsia or other obstetric emergencies, necessitating the need for rigorous standards, appropriate oversight of obstetric providers, and the availability of emergency care, for the health of both the mother and the baby during a delivery; therefore be it

RESOLVED, That our American Medical Association support the recent American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) statement that “the safest setting for labor, delivery, and the immediate post-partum period is in the hospital, or a birthing center within a hospital complex, that meets standards jointly outlined by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and ACOG, or in a freestanding birthing center that meets the standards of the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care, The Joint Commission, or the American Association of Birth Centers” [3] (New HOD Policy); and be it further

RESOLVED, That our AMA develop model legislation in support of the concept that the safest setting for labor, delivery, and the immediate post-partum period is in the hospital, or a birthing center within a hospital complex, that meets standards jointly outlined by the AAP and ACOG, or in a freestanding birthing center that meets the standards of the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care, The Joint Commission, or the American Association of Birth Centers.” (Directive to Take Action)


Fiscal Note: Implement accordingly at estimated staff cost of $1,929.

Received: 04/28/08



[1] http://www.acog.org/departments/stateleg/MidwiferyYearinReview2007.pdf, accessed March 18, 2008

[2] www.today.msnbc.msn.com/id/22592397, accessed March 18, 2008

[3] www.acog.org/from_home/publications press_releases/nr02-06-06-2.cfm, accessed March 18,2008

The Business of Being Born

In light of my most recent post concerning homebirth, you ladies have GOT to check out this website: The Business of Being Born.
I SO want to get my hands on this documentary!!!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Why do we homebirth?

With our little babe's birth up-and-coming, I thought I would share with you ladies briefly why we have decided to homebirth our children. Considering today's cultural trend to have hospital births, having a child at home may sound quite foreign to many of you. But contrary to popular belief, homebirth has been the norm for centuries. In the future, I plan on sharing research and statistics on the safety of homebirth in regard to low-risk women. But for now, here are a few of the reasons why we have chosen this birthing option.

1- Women have been doing this since the time of Adam and Eve. It's only been within the past two generations that hospital births have become the "norm".

2- Midwives and hospitals approach birth completely different. From a midwifery (pronounced 'mid-wif-er-ee') perspective, birth is viewed as a healthy life process. God has uniquely designed the female body to conceive and give birth to children. It's a normal function of her body, something she was created for and is fully capable of doing. From a hospital perspective, birth is viewed as a medical condition that requires medical intervention(s), something that needs to be "monitored" and "treated". There is so much fear surrounding the process of labor and delivery nowadays. We wonder how much of that is due to doctors turning something normal into a perceived medical problem or complication.

3- For low-risk women, homebirth is a safe alternative... possibly a safer alternative. High infant mortality rates of the past were largely due to issues of cleanliness/hygiene. Nowadays, we take MUCH better care of our homes and bodies so it's not so much an issue. Also, we are immune to the germs in our own homes whereas in a hospital, one comes in contact with all sorts of germs and viruses that they'd never meet at home. Plus, toward the end of pregnancy, we are required to order a Birth Kit. In this kit are sterile, hospital grade items necessary for birth, like gloves, pads, cord clamp, etc. so it's not like the baby will be introduced to an unsterile environment with unsterile equipment.

4- The level of care is much better with a midwife. At the hospital, prenatal appointments usually consist of very impersonal/very brief meetings with the doctor or nurse. To me, it felt like I was just a number... get me in-&-out so the next patient can be seen as quickly as possible. With a midwife, it's the exact opposite. Our initial consultation with the midwife was 1-1/2 hours long (and free of cost!). Prenatal visits are at least 30 minutes. Our midwife wants to know me, my family, my history, my fears and concerns, etc. I also get to know her, her family, her experience, etc. It is a VERY interpersonal relationship. The more she knows about me and my family, the better she can fulfill her role. So when I'm in labor, it's not a stranger wearing scrubs I'm with... but a close friend.

5- The process of birth itself was so much more relaxing and rewarding at home. At the hospital, it was cold, brightly lit, I was confined to bed and IV, and was denied food and drink for the entire duration of my labor and delivery (which left me dry-heaving during transition- which was AWFUL!). Apparently the hospital's reasoning for the "no-food-no-drink" thing is two-fold: 1- having an empty stomach is necessary for emergency c-section and 2- vomit could potentially enter your lungs (which rarely happens). At home, I had all the comforts of home: my lazyboy recliner, dim lights, I was free to walk and roam about the house as I pleased, and I was allowed to eat and drink as I needed (which provided me the strength and energy to sustain me during intense labor and delivery). I still did end up throwing up during transition, but at least I had something TO throw-up (which was WAY better). I delivered Cassandra in my bedroom, which for me was the most comfortable, private, and secure place. Her delivery was unlike the two hospital births I'd had before. Arianna and Benjamin came out screaming because of the cold and lights. I was only able to hold them briefly before they were whisked away for cleaning, shots, and goop to be put in their eyes. Cassandra came out bright-eyed, alert, content, and was allowed to stay in my arms for a long time. Immediately following birth and cord cutting, I was urged to nurse. Then, after a good nursing/time of bonding, Cassandra and I got to take an herbal bath together. We were pretty much inseperable from the moment she came out. And Cassandra never cried. Night and day difference. One more thought here... when a woman is laboring at home, she is comfortable and secure and usually labors continuously without interruption. Yet, how many times have you heard of (or experienced for yourself) labor stalling or altogether stopping when a woman leaves for the hospital?...

6- Most midwives deliver more babies than OB/GYN's. Our midwife has delivered over 800 babies in the (10) years she's been in practice. Your typical OB/GYN can't even compete. Part of that is not the Dr.'s fault, though, as they do more than just deliver babies. But not only does our midwife have certifications and training, she obviously has a TON of experience under her belt. There's probably not much she hasn't seen yet. To us, experience means more than a degree. We trust she knows what she's doing. And contrary to popular medical belief, IF something DOES go wrong, it doesn't usually crop up out of nowhere. A seasoned midwife should see signs and symptoms of something wrong long before it becomes a problem. And at that point, she either takes care of the problem herself or she will recognize it requires medical help and will transport momma to the hospital. There's not a whole lot that a midwife can't do that a doctor can, besides do c-sections. And there are a lot of natural ways to curb normal complications during birth that doctors either won't do or are unaware of.

7- I get to choose what position I want to birth in. At the hospital, it's laying down on a bed with your legs spread and up. Not comfortable. At home, I birthed on a cresent shaped stool where gravity could actually work FOR me rather than against me. Made pushing SO MUCH easier... and quicker! Many midwives also provide the option of having a water birth.

8- Less internals with a midwife. I had my first internal exam with my midwife when Cassandra's head was in the birth canal. They are usually an "un-necessary evil". My midwife jokes that she is willing to do internals if asked, but I then have to provide her with a homemade pie. :-) I think she's serious! Think about it... everytime someone checks momma internally, the risk of infection increases. I cannot count how many people and how many times I was checked internally during hospital prenatal visits and the actual hospital birth experience.

9- The cost is dramatically different. Even with insurance, Arianna and Benjamin cost RD and I several thousand dollars a piece. Cassandra and baby #4 cost us $1,800 each.

There are several other reasons why RD and I have chosen this birthing option... but these are the biggies. As I mentioned earlier, I do hope to share in the very near future information in regard to homebirth safety. We hope to dispel a lot of the misconceptions and unknowns surrounding homebirth so other mother's out there reading this blog can make a more informed choice about their birthing options.

Baby update...

Yea! Finally something to report! The baby is engaged, which means the baby's head is 'locked and loaded' (so to speak) within my pelvis. At this point, it would be very difficult for baby to change positions. Still anterior, which is perfect for delivery. Baby has a good, strong heart rate. Mommy's blood pressure looks great.


Would any of you ladies be interested in hearing the birth story once all is said and done?...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Feminine Appeal

This week I have started re-reading Carolyn Mahaney's book entitled "Feminine Appeal- Seven Virtues of a Godly Wife and Mother". A must-read! This morning during my quiet-time, I was reading in the chapter concerning "kindness" and "goodness", specifically the hindrances we encounter when trying to display biblical kindness and goodness. I just HAVE to share this portion of the text because it's something that I struggle with personally as a wife and mom. Perhaps some of you other women out there can relate. May you be encouraged!

Hindrance #1: Anger

If we hold out a soaking wet sponge and squeeze it, what will happen? Water will fall on the floor. We may look at the puddle and think it was caused by the squeeze. However, the squeeze only revealed what was already in the sponge. You could squeeze a dry sponge, but no water would come out.
What's the point?
As with a sponge, what is in our hearts will spill out of us when the squeeze is on. In other words, difficult interactions or trying experiences (the squeeze perpetrators) are not the cause of our angry reactions; rather they serve to reveal the sin that was there all along. Matthew 15:18 says that "what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart."
Expressions of anger reveal sinful desires in our hearts, cravings that are not being satisfied. Dr. David Powlison offers this description of sinful anger: "I want my way and not God's, and because I can't have my way, I rage." As it says in James 4:1-2, "What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have."
So what do I want that I'm not getting? Am I craving peace and quiet, convenience and ease, a clean and orderly house, appreciation and recognition? Or do I long to get even, inflict hurt, be right, win the argument? Whatever it is, we need to recognize that "wanting my way" is really the driving force that propels our anger.
...as Dr. David Powlison (paraphrasing John Calvin) articulates: "The evil in our desires often lies not in what we want but that we want it too much."

Scripture's Solution to Anger

After a straightforward diagnosis of our anger, James 4 prescribes the remedy: We must humble ourselves and submit to God (vv. 6-10). When we are tempted to sinful anger, we must ask the Holy Spirit to open our spiritual eyes to perceive the sinfulness of our cravings.
It is helpful to ask the question: "What do I want MORE than I want to please God?" Then we must confess and repent from these evil desires. This requires humility, but we have God's pledge that He will give grace to the humble (James 4:6). He will help us turn from anger and cultivate kindness.

After reading this portion of text, my heart was heavy with grief and conviction. I realized that much of the anger and frustration I experience throughout the day is due to cravings that are not being met:
-I want peace and quiet
-I want a clean and orderly home
-I want/expect obedience
-I don't want to be interrupted
-I want to sit on the couch, not get up and discipline/train
-I don't feel like making dinner/doing laundry/etc.
-I should be able to get a nap
etc.

Some of these desires are not bad in and of themselves, but they become sinful when I react with anger when they are not met... when I want them MORE than I want to please God.

Thankfully, I have been given a Helper, the Holy Spirit (John 14:26). God knows that in my own strength, I am incapable of always being kind and good. He desires me to walk with Him and to rely upon His strength.

If you are a born-again believer, you too, have been given a Helper. God does not desire you to live your life in your own strength. If you are struggling to be kind and good as a wife and/or mom, may I encourage you to humble yourself today, now... confess, repent, and ask for the Holy Spirit to be your Helper in this awesome task.

Baby update...


I'm now 40 weeks...
But still nothing...
-sigh-

I did lose my mucus plug on Monday (couldn't they have come up with a better term? ;-) ... but apparently that is just another sign that labor is coming... sometime...

So anyways... when something/anything happens, I (or RD) will be sure and post it here and let you ladies know.

*Please continue to pray for labor and delivery, that the baby is healthy, and that we transition well as a family to the introduction of a new member.

Homemade Tea



Last summer, my girlfriend, Rebekah, hooked me up with a split from her spearmint plant, which we planted in our garden. A couple of weeks ago, the kids and I were out there taming the runners (as it spreads like crazy) and dried what we had cut off. We simply rinsed the leaves/stems, spread them out on a cookie sheet, placed a piece of paper towel over it, and let them dry on the top of one of my cupboards. Then last night, I whizzed them up in my mini food processor and made my first cup of homemade spearmint tea. It was really yummy!

I'd love to get my hands on some peppermint!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Meatless recipes

RD and I are currently attempting to expand our meatless recipe collection, specifically 'main dishes' and 'sides'. We were wondering if you ladies would be willing to share your recipes with us. We are totally open to legumes, beans, pretty much any kind of veggie, etc. The only thing we don't like is tofu. If you have several recipes to share, you can e-mail them to me at: growthasawifeandmom@yahoo.com

Thanks so much, ladies!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Baby update

Saw the midwife this morning and everything looks great. Baby still isn't "engaged" but it has sunk somewhat. Baby is in an anterior position, which is what is wanted for labor/delivery. That means his/her face is pointed toward my backside. Heartbeat is a healthy 144 bpm. Measured at 39 weeks. Next appointment is scheduled for (Thurs.) June 20th (unless I have that baby before then).

*Please be praying for me as I'm in these final few days before delivery:

1) that regardless of how I am feeling, I would still seek to be Christ-like (patient, gentle, self-controlled, etc.)

2) for an 'uneventful' and normal labor and delivery; calm nerves

3) for a strong/healthy baby

4) that these last few days as a family would be precious and memorable

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Dresses or pants?

Cassandra was so cute the other day.
Lately, I've been trying to have both myself and my girls wear more dresses. Not that we think there is anything wrong with pants, but we're simply trying to be more "lady-like" (as Arianna refers to it).
So anyway... us girls have grown accustomed here lately to wearing skirts and dresses.
Come last Saturday, I put on Cassandra a pair of capri pants. She tugged at the pant legs and looked up at me inquisitively and said "Ben-a-min?". Like, "am I wearing Benjamin's pants?" Apparently she thought I must have made a mistake at picking out her clothes for the day!
We've been chuckling at it ever since.



OR

Sunday, June 08, 2008

39 weeks!

It's almost time!!!
Keep everyone posted on details!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Labor progress?

Thursday night (6/5/08), as I was sitting at my computer, the baby was just kicking with all it's gusto/squirming like crazy. Finally, when he/she settled down, everything felt really heavy 'down there'. As I stood up, I also noticed I had a little more room to my lungs. I do believe my little kiddo dropped!!! :-) And... it's continued to feel 'heavy' since that time. My next appt. with the midwife is this coming Wednesday. Keep everyone posted!

Please be in prayer regarding my upcoming labor and delivery. Thanks.



*A cute moment:
The other day, Benjamin came to be with this digger/backhoe toy truck and started to gently dig at my tummy. I asked, "What on earth are you doing, son?" To which he replied, "I'm helping you, mommy. I'm digging the baby out."
:-)

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

38 weeks...


I'm ready when you are, kiddo...

Definitely "miscellaneous"!

This has absolutely nothing to do with being a wife and mom... rather, this is just odd... but amazing. Talk about falsetto!

Check this out!

More on my garden...

Got my tomatoes planted last night: (2) cherry, (1) Roma, (4) Early Girl, and (4) Big Boy. That should keep us and RD's parents well-supplied throughout the summer. With the baby coming, we only wanted to plant that which we could eat and not worry ourselves with freezing and canning.

The kids and I are eagerly awaiting the sprouts from our watermelon, peas, and lettuce to pop out. I also looked into getting some rhubarb but apparently it can only be planted in early spring or late fall. :-( So anyways, we're going to see if we can purchase some seed and get it started indoors this summer and plant it this fall. Guess we'll have to wait one more year on that one.

Then, this week the kids and I are going to start some tin can herbs. I'll have to post their artwork when they get them completed. Should be cute.

38 weeks!