Thursday, May 10, 2012

A year in the making

Happy Mother's Day! 

A year ago we were almost 9 weeks along and we announced the best little secret. Our family of two was going to be three in December.  We were at Travis and Kelly's house and we told my side of the family.  Then we went over to David's parents house and gave his mom a card with the ultrasound picture in it.
This is the cake we gave to the Finkbeiner's on Mother's Day!
I had been sick and would continue to be sick until around 18 weeks. We had known about the pregnancy for 4 weeks and didnt tell anyone. We thought the due date went of the ultrasound so we changed it to 12/18 but the dr said he goes off the last period which made her due date 12/16. She was born on 12/15 so that was a pretty good estimation. Overall a perfect pregnancy, a perfect delivery and a perfect baby.

While I was a mommy last mother's day I don't think I had "earned by stripes" yet. David got me a card and got me a baby carriage pandora bead. But this mother's day I do deserve it. I have gave everything to my daughter for the last 5 months and I will until I die.  I have spent many sleepless nights and long days singing, rocking, walking, cuddling and overall attending to the needs of precious gift from God.  This is my calling from God.  In college my residents would call me, "momma".  I took care of them and took on the "momma" role.

Right after bathtime!
Being a full time Mommy is not for the faint of heart. You get criticized. You get looked down upon.  You have days when you want to scream. But I am so thankful for God's provision and His perfect will.  Because I know this is my calling.  Please continue to lift me up in prayers that I stay in His will.  

This mother's day I also have a thankful heart. I am so thankful for my mother and my mother in law. They are great examples of Godly women and together have raised 4 successful Christian children.  I am so glad God saw fit for me to be a part of the Finkbeiner family. The Bible gives us a perfect example through Ruth and Naomi. 

"But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. 17 Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.” Ruth 1:16-17

I am also thankful for all the other mothers in my life.  Thankful for my aunties who have been like mothers. Thankful for my sister in law, Kelly, she is such a good mommy to my niece and nephew. Thankful for the moms on facebook who set good examples. Thankful for Michelle Duggar and her example of a Godly mother and wife.  Thankful for all the mothers in the Bible. And thankful for my mommy friends. You are all such a blessing to me.

All Praise to God!

Psalm 113

Praise the Lord.[a]
Praise the Lord, you his servants;
    praise the name of the Lord.
Let the name of the Lord be praised,
    both now and forevermore.
From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets,
    the name of the Lord is to be praised.
The Lord is exalted over all the nations,
    his glory above the heavens.
Who is like the Lord our God,
    the One who sits enthroned on high,
who stoops down to look
    on the heavens and the earth?
He raises the poor from the dust
    and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
he seats them with princes,
    with the princes of his people.
He settles the childless woman in her home
    as a happy mother of children.
Praise the Lord.

Yours in Christ, 
Little Mommy

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Reading Rainbow

David and I received a Kindle Fire for Christmas.  You can really get into some trouble by buying books if you dont watch it. When Harper was a newborn I hardly ever slept and it seemed all she did was eat and sleep. I nursed and rocked her a ton in then nursery. This gave me a lot of time to read. (Now, not so much) So first I read The Hunger Games trilogy. I loved the first two and thought they were amazing the third one was just okay to me. But I read them all in like a week.
So after that I was still on my reading spree. I read the first 3 books of the Karen Kingsbury novels. She is a christian author who writes fiction about the Baxter family. I love them and I am looking forward to reading more. The reason I havent read the 4th is I wanted to start checking them out on my Kindle through the library. I finally got a library card, now I just have to set it up to the library system.  Then I will be onto the 4th in the series.

A few months ago in the fall I had the opportunity to hear The Duggars speak at the Abundant Life Pregnancy Banquet. I had David buy me their newest book "A love that Mulitplies" so I could have Jim Bob and Michelle sign it. I am almost finished reading it. I love a lot of their parenting styles. I love that whenever one of their children are in trouble they make the child look them into the eyes when they get on to them.  Michelle says, "If you dont have their eyes, you wont have their hearts". Another thing they do that I really like is every night they have "bible time".  Jim Bob reads them the bible and they talk about their days and what they are going to do the next day. Their book is encouraging and inspiring.
Michelle and I, she was pregnant with Jubilee and I was pregnant with Harper in October or November.
I have also began a daily bible study with God. I have been saved since I was 8 years old and I have never set up a daily "quiet" (not so quiet) time.  I started with reading a chapter of Proverbs every day out loud to Harper when its nap time.  She usually squirms and hollers but I get that special time with God. Then I pray and have conversation with God.  I have now moved on over to Ecclesiastes and will keep on going. This isn't a post about how proud I am of my relationship but more like how ashamed I am that I am just now beginning this daily bible study.  I am really enjoying these daily readings and I am yearning for more.  Jesus said in Matthew 4:4, "Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God" 

Okay and last but not least here is my little sweetie sleeping so sweetly. She is growing up so fast. She has gotten two little tooths in the bottom front. Teething has been so hard. She rubs her face and chews on everything. I hate seeing her in pain. Nothing I was warned about lol
Angel baby at 4 months

Thursday, April 19, 2012

4 Months: Too Fast

Can anyone tell me where the last 4 months have gone???? The 10 months of being pregnant seemed to go on forever but these precious 4 months of having my sweet infant have zoomed by.  This is going to be a bragging post, so if you don't want to hear it stop reading now.
Harper's first Easter! 
Sorry its taking me this long to write a new post.  I literally spend at least 20 hours of my 24 hour day either holding or playing with Harper.  This is one of the reasons we think she is so developed.  Here comes the bragging.  At 1 month old she was having real smiles.  At 2 months we had giggles. At 2 1/2 months she was rolling over from tummy to back and at 4 months she is rolling over from back to front, standing for long periods of time, cutting teeth, hollering at the top of her lungs, playing with her feet, and pulling herself a few inches across the floor. Have I mentioned how much I love being a mother? People say that I am spoiling her by holding her so much.  A baby doesn't understand manipulation. According to the book, The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, they dont actually start being spoiled until age 2. All she knows is that she wants to be hugged, cuddled and secure in the arms of loved ones.
Look at those eyes!

Men quit reading now. 4 months also means 4 months of exclusively breastfeeding.  Harper has never had an ounce of formula and I hope to never give any of my children a drop of it.  Is it hard? Absolutely but so worth it.  Here have been the hardest things for me. 1.) She was born with a severe tongue tie.  I was in denile about it because I thought it was just a bad latch. But after seeing the dr, she referred us to an ENT dr and clipped her little tongue.  2.) For 3 months she ate every 2 hours, now its about 3 hours.  3.) Having to go into another room to feed her. Especially in the beginning when your hormones are crazy it can be hard to sit alone in a dark room.  4.) Dealing with an oversupply.  I produce too much milk so it comes out very fast and can choke Harper or spray her in the face. The best way to overcome this is by laying back to feed her.  5.) I miss Red Bull. 6.) Wearing a dress can make nursing very hard. There have been other obstacles we have overcome and I am sure there will be more.  I will do another post sometime on all the positive things that have come out of breastfeeding my "milky girl".

Had her 4 month appointment this week.  She weighed in at 15lbs 14oz and 27 inches.  She was in 91 percentile for weight and 99 for height. I sure hope shes athletic!

When I got pregnant with Harper I weighed in at 170 lbs. Yes I was eating out often and sitting at a desk for 8 hours a day.  Three days before she was born I weighed in at 198 (Yayyy didnt break 200).  2 weeks after she was born I was at 165. Four months later I weighed in this morning at 150!!!! Yes Yes Yes, I havent weighed that since I got married :) I am not dieting or working out. I am just caring for and taking care of Harper.
Harper talking to her Aunt Johnnie! 
I wanted to share a few verses that my father in law sent to me this week.

Psalm 128:1-4
Blessed are all who fear the LORD,
   who walk in obedience to him.
 You will eat the fruit of your labor;
   blessings and prosperity will be yours.
 Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
   within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
   around your table.
 Yes, this will be the blessing
   for the man who fears the LORD.

Yours in Christ,
Little Mommy

Monday, March 19, 2012

Harper's Birth Story

There is so many details I had to leave out because if I didnt this post would be REALLY long. The whole childbirth process was amazing. I am looking forward to doing it all again some day.

Psalm 127:3-5

 3 Children are a heritage from the LORD,
   offspring a reward from him.
4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
   are children born in one’s youth.
5 Blessed is the man
   whose quiver is full of them.
They will not be put to shame
   when they contend with their opponents in court. 

Last picture of my belly before Harper arrived. This is Sunday, 5 days before she was born.
On Tuesday December 13th, I went in for my weekly doctor visit and I had no progress. The doctor said I might have started to thin out but no dilation. I was very discouraged as I was extremely uncomfortable.  And had quit sleeping this week.

Wednesday December 14th (my parents 31st wedding anniversary),  I went to work for a full day. And every day we joked, "well maybe ill see you tomorrow".  I also went to church that night and had a class of 5 students which is a good crowd for us. I was extremely uncomfortable and stood the whole time we had class. I was too uncomfortable to sit.  Once of the sweet ladies at church put me on the prayer list.  That night around 10pm. I started having a terrible backache. I tried to go to bed with a heating pad but nothing seemed to ease the pain.  I took 2 hot baths and a shower trying to get some relief but none was in sight.  It was a terrible night for me as I moved back and forth from the bed, to the couch, to the bathroom. I started timing these pains and they were around 15 minutes apart.

Thursday December 15th,  around 4am I woke David up and said I don't know when but we are going to the doctor today because I am in too much pain. He said wake me up when you are ready to go. Around 7am I said I think we should go. At this point we didn't know what was going on but I was in severe pain in my lower back.  We were almost too scared to even call our parents but on the way to St Vincent Hospital in Little Rock, we decided we should give them a heads up. But we wouldn't let them tell anyone in case they sent me home. On the way to the hospital my contractions were about 5 minutes apart.When we got to the hospital they gave me a delivery room and checked to see if I was dilated. I was at a 2. The doctor wanted me to walk around for an hour and see if I progressed and if I did I was in an active labor instead of early labor. Let me tell you that hour was the longest hour of my life.  At the end of the hour I needed a wheel chair to get back to the room because my back was hurting so bad. They checked me and I was at a 3. Hallelujah! They are going to keep me and What did you say? I can have my epidural? YESSSS!! This was around 11am. At this point the rest of the day was a blur. It was so exciting as family and friends came and most importantly I was going to meet my baby girl this day.

Around 7pm was the nurses shift change. Then came in Kim Browning. She had graduated with David's parents and she would be there to take care of Harper and I.  About this time I had an extreme amount of pressure in my pelvic area and I was dilated to a 10 and I could no longer take it and I pushed. POP there goes my water, finally! This baby is coming soon :D We started pushing around 7:15.  I was put on oxygen for the baby's heart rate was dropping. They pulled out the forceps and vacuum. I told myself at that point its time to get to business. My precious angel entered the world at 7:39 PM. As the doctor laid her on my chest  I couldn't believe this was my beautiful baby. She was 8lbs and 6oz and 21 1/2 inches long.  Our family of  2 was now 3.

 We spent two nights in the hospital. When we left we weren't sure if they should send us home with this tiny precious baby. But we made it! We have had our problems with sleepless nights, reflux, poor latch, constipation, and now teething. But I cant remember my life before Harper and I love being a mommy.  I seriously thank God for her multiple times a day. Words cannot express our love for this little angel.

Yours in Christ, 
Little Mommy

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Baby Carriers

Babies love to be held. They want to be close to their mommies and daddies. And it sure is hard to get any work done around the house why holding a sweet little baby. And alot of babies do not like their carseats so pushing them around in a stroller is not ideal. Thats why it's important to have a good baby carrier.

Before I take the time to describe a few good carriers I wanted to point out some important things to know. One of the main things is the hips should be supported. Below is an image I found on the internet showing the difference the wrong carrier can have on your baby's hips.
Another important thing to know when buying a carrier is to never have the baby facing outward.  I know you are probably thinking "babies love to look out". But Dr. Evelin Kirkilionis, "Infants in outward-facing orientations can’t turn away from surrounding stimuli. They can't turn inward toward a parent's body if stimuli become overwhelming. In this position the baby cannot make eye contact with his or her parent to evaluate facial expressions, social cues, and so forth to make assessment of the situation. Only choose a baby carrier that allows your child to face you ... never out. There are too many events going on around your baby. A baby has no way to exclude himself from the environment by turning his head away and towards you. Healthy sleep is difficult for a baby who is facing outward." From, A Baby Wants To Be Carried by Dr. Eveline Kirkilionis, (a human development specialist who has researched babywearing since 1985).

While doing research on this topic I came across They say to remember T.I.C.K.S. when you are wearing a baby sling or carrier.

I-In View at all times
C-Close enough to kiss
K-Keep chin off chest
S-Supported Back

 One good type of baby wearing device is the Moby wrap.  You can find these at BabiesRus.  They offer the hip support and allow your baby to be close to you.  You can also make your own.  My friend makes them and sells them with all different types of fabrics and can customize them for you. Also you can breast feed in a moby wrap! According to their website they can hold up to 35 lbs.  The only downside to this carrier is they can be complicated to put on at first. But once you the hang of it, its easy. Below is an image of my friend Stehanie in her Moby. 

Now the main type of carrier I use and absoultely love is the ergo carrier. It can be found at BabiesRus, and Target and other stores as well. I love this carrier because you can use it from birth (with the infant insert) up until they recommend 40 lbs but has been tested up to, get this, 90 LBS.  You can wear them on the front of you, on your hip or your back when they are atleast 6 months.  I love this carrier because of many things. One being men dont mind wearing the ergo.  Another being the hood that comes attached to it. It can protect them from the sun or wind.  Also you can breastfeed in the ergo carrier as well. This carrier evenly distributed the baby's weight evenly on you.  I used this at Wal-Mart the other day and I had both arms to do as I pleased and I didnt have to worry about the cart.  Plus Harper doesnt really enjoy her carseat sometimes.  I also walk at the park  with my ergo carrier on.  Baby and mommy are both happy with it. And plan to use it alot more. Below is a picture of celebrity Selma Blair with her ergo carrier. And one of me trying on my ergo before the Rascal Flatts concert to make sure I could work it (I had gotten it in the day before). Mine has the infant insert that I will use in mine until Harper is around 5 months. 

Their are other types of baby wearing devices from adjustable slings, to ring slings to Mei Tai Slings and so on. I have an adjustable sling but I'm not very good at getting her positioned in yet. Just do your research before buying one and make sure you are getting whats best for not only baby but for mommy and daddy too.

To end I want to give you 10 reasons I found on the internet to wear your baby.
1. Its Convient.
2. It promotes physical development
3. Babies worn are happier
4. Its healthier for you (exercise for momma)
5. Toddlers appreciate the security
6. Helps momma and baby communicate
7. Baby wearing is a bonding tool for the whole family
8. Its a safe place for baby to be
9. Slings and Carriers can be economical if you use often
10. Baby wearing is FUN!

Yours in Christ,
Little Mommy

Friday, March 2, 2012

Thankful and Blessed

Whew! What a week!!!

Monday night I went to bed feeling sick and I was up on and off all night and Tuesday with a terrible stomach virus.  I hardly ever get sick and I cant remember the last time I had a stomach virus. The big concern with having a small baby is her getting sick too. Especially since I am the source of all her food I have to hold her and cuddle her.  Luckily my mom was able to come over on Tuesday and play with her so I could get a couple of naps in.  Well the stomach virus skipped Harper. When I would nurse her she would get the antibodies my body was producing to rid of the virus. Oh the power of breast milk! But unfortunately the stomach virus did not skip my poor momma :( She was trying to help me and ended up getting the bug.  She says she would do it again for me. A year ago we almost lost my sweet mom and I dont know what I would do without her. She has helped me out so much. Proberbs 31 says, "Her children arise up, and call her blessed".  Thank you God for my Momma!

So from Sunday night to Wednesday night Harper and I didnt leave the house and we were ready to get the heck out of here. Thursday we went to bible study and lunch at the First Electric community room with around 15 women and it was really nice to be around other women of faith.  After the lunch we went to the Perryville park and walked around with Stephanie and another young momma. We enjoy our weekly walks where we can talk about our similiar situations and offer support and friendship towards each other.  I am always so happy after these walks. It reminds me of a quote from Legally Blonde said by Elle, "Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands, they just don't." Thank you God for placing people in my life!

On top of everything going on, David has began working late this week. Its the worst part of the month.  He will have to work late all week.  On normal weeks we look forward to him coming home around 6 and I get to take a shower and get some stuff done I normally cant with Harper (11 weeks old now!).  And she looks forward to seeing a new face, she gets tired of looking at me all day long. But during close weeks we are in bed when he gets home and we might see him for a minute in the morning.  So we are really looking forward to this weekend of spending some time together. Thank you God for husband and daughter!

On another note, its pay day!!! And I am buying this little beauty for Harper.

Yours in Christ,
Little Mommy

Monday, February 27, 2012

Hey Good Looking, What You Got Cooking?

One of my favorite things to do is cook! I really like to try different recipes and fill up mine and other's tummies. On this post I figured I could share some of the recipes I have tried lately.

Thursday night I made a "Ham and Cheese Calzone". I had to try it out on Thursday because I would be making it for my party on Saturday. It was delicious! David went back for seconds and we had enough leftover to eat on Friday for lunch. I will definitely try this again.  You can also change up the ingredients.  I think using ranch chicken and bacon would be really great too.

Ham & Cheese Calzone
 2 tbsp (30 mL) mayonnaise 
 2 tsp (10 mL) Dijon mustard 
 1 cup (250 mL) fresh broccoli florets (about 2 oz/60 g) 
 1 8-oz (250-g) slice smoked deli ham (about ½ in./1 cm thick) 
 1/2 small onion 
 8 oz (250 g) Swiss cheese, grated, divided 
 1 tbsp (15 mL) vegetable oil, divided 
 2 pkg (13.8 oz/283 g) refrigerated pizza crust 
 1 oz (30 g) Parmesan cheese, grated 
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C). Combine mayonnaise and mustard in Classic Batter Bowl; mix well with Small Mix ‘N Scraper®. With Utility Knife, cut broccoli into small florets; dice ham. Using Food Chopper, coarsely chop onion. Grate Swiss cheese with Ultimate Mandoline fitted with grating blade. Combine broccoli, ham, onion and half of the Swiss cheese in batter bowl; mix well.

  2. Lightly brush Large Bar Pan with 1 tsp (5 mL) of the oil using Chef's Silicone Basting Brush. Unroll one package of dough onto bottom of bar pan, gently stretching and pressing dough to cover bottom. Sprinkle with remaining Swiss cheese to within 1 in. (2.5 cm) of edges; spoon ham mixture over cheese. Unroll remaining dough directly over filling, matching edges of dough and shaping to fit as dough is unrolled. Trim 1/2 in. (1 cm) off sides of dough with Utility Knife. Press edges to seal with Mini-Tart Shaper. Brush remaining oil over dough. Using Utility Knife, make 12 slits, in three rows of four each, into top crust.

  3. Bake 14-16 minutes or until golden brown. Meanwhile, grate Parmesan cheese using Microplane® Adjustable Grater; sprinkle over calzone. Return calzone to oven; bake 2-3 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is deep golden brown. Slice with Pizza Cutter; serve with Mini-Serving Spatula.
Yield: 8 servings

On Friday night we enjoyed a good ole taco soup.  I found this recipe online.  We ate it with fritos, shredded cheese and sour cream.

Simple Taco Soup
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning mix
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 (15 ounce) can mild chili beans
  • 1 (15.25 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
  • 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chile peppers
  • 1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies
  • 1 (1 ounce) package ranch salad dressing mix
  1. In a Dutch oven or large kettle, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Add taco seasoning and mix well. Stir in remaining ingredients. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes or until heated through, stirring occasionally. 
I want to leave you with a dessert recipe I made at my Pampered Chef party on Saturday as well. We made the Cappuccino Mousse Trifle.  I had made it before and both times it was a hit. It really taste like Olive Garden Tiramisu. 
Cappuccino Mousse Trifle
1   (16-oz) thawed frozen prepared pound cake (or 2 frozen prepared pound cakes, 298 g each)
2 1/2   cups (625 mL) cold milk
1/3   cup (75 mL) instant coffee granules
2   pkgs (3.4 oz/102 g each) vanilla instant pudding and pie filling
2   containers (8 ounces each) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided (6 cups/1.5 L)
1   square (1 oz/30 g) semi-sweet chocolate for baking
1/4   tsp (1 mL) ground cinnamon
1. Cut pound cake into 1-in. (2.5 cm) cubes; set aside. Whisk together milk and instant coffee granules; let stand 5 minutes or until dissolved. Set aside 1 cup (250 mL) of the milk mixture. Add pudding mixes to remaining milk mixture; whisk until pudding mixture begins to thicken. Gently fold in half of the whipped topping.
2. To assemble trifle, place half of the cake cubes into bottom of Trifle Bowl, pressing down gently. Pour half of the reserved milk mixture evenly over cake cubes. Top with half of the pudding mixture. Grate one-third of the chocolate over pudding mixture. Repeat layers one time. (Reserve remaining chocolate for garnish.)
3. Reserve 1 cup (250 mL) of the remaining whipped topping for garnish. Spread remaining whipped topping over entire top of trifle, creating a smooth surface. Pipe rosettes around edge of dessert with reserved whipped topping. Grate remaining chocolate in center; sprinkle lightly with cinnamon.
Yield: 10 servings
I hope you enjoy these recipes! 

"Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God" 1 Corinthians 10:31

Yours in Christ,
Little Mommy