Thursday, May 16, 2013

Potty Training. A Review.

So I've pretty much been putting off potty training for awhile. Some of my reasons are valid. When C was 18 months I was pregnant and getting our house ready to list on the market. After 4 months of trying to sell it by ourselves, we did, and from there we moved and had a baby and it's taken a little while to get into a new rhythm. I've also been mildly terrified of the idea of potty training in general. I was a bit of a terror to train and apparently didn't master it until the ripe age of 4 and I've heard plenty of horror stories from other moms. I also know I am stubborn and C can be a bit at times as well so I was concerned about this becoming a power struggle. 

Well, last week I bought some big boy underwear for C and finally washed it yesterday. Last night I told my hubby I was going to try to get started today. (Hoping that by speaking it I would provide some accountability for myself)

The day started a little rough when I pulled out a pair of C's new Thomas the Train underwear and he started crying and running away. "I want biaper. I don't want those!"

Fortunately it went uphill from there.

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised with how well today went. The first time he had an accident wasn't until late morning and he actually told me he needed to go, but I didn't get his clothes off fast enough. He went on to only have 2 more accidents and went on the potty several times. He apologized every time he had an accident. "I sawwy mommy!" (such a sweetie!) I told him that accidents happen sometimes and he's learning something new so it will take a little practice. 

I thought we'd start off easy using his little potty, but no; "I want sit on big potty." And then, "I do it! You let go hands!" Alrighty then. 

He's a smart cookie. He gets mini marshmallows when he goes, so he started going just a little, get his marshmallows and then he'd be back in 5 minutes to go a little more and ask for more marshmallows. I think he realized he could get substantially more marshmallows that way. On the plus side, he has great bladder control! By the end of the day he seemed to be able to hold it until I would take him in to try to go. 

It's kind of crazy to think I'm potty training my baby boy! Caleb is getting to be so big! 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Good Enough

I've been a perfectionist for awhile. As a teenager I obsessed over how I looked. I wanted my hair, clothes, and body perfect. I wanted perfect grades. I wanted to be perfect at my jobs. I wanted to be perfect spiritually- do all the right things (pray, read my bible, go to church, volunteer in the community) I found my worth in these things.

I did pretty well for awhile. I was pretty good at controlling my environment and myself. I am a first born, type 'A' personality. I graduated with honors, had management positions at my jobs, participated in the music and youth ministries at my church. I volunteered at a local crisis pregnancy center.

Then I got married. And all the sudden someone knew me deep enough to know my facade of perfection was just that, a facade. I heard a great quote recently, "Marriage brings you not into conflict with your spouse but with your own sinful self."

This is so true. Suddenly I had to try to reconcile the reality that I was flawed and hurt my spouse with my belief that I thought I had it together.

It has taken a long time for me to admit that I am not actually perfect (ha!) and more importantly that I need God and others. 

I finally am at a place in my life when I am starting to see that I really don't have it all together. I am giving grace to myself, allowing myself to be flawed. Because God does. He allows me to to come to Him weak, and broken and wants to shine through my insufficiencies. 

At our church the Senior Pastor Bob often has referred to himself as a "recovering perfectionist." I remember thinking the first time I heard him say that, "That's good he's working on that. I'm so glad I don't struggle with that." *facepalm* 

I realized this week that I am finding myself in the same category, a "recovering perfectionist."

Here are some of the ways I realized I am changing:

Laundry: I no longer feel the need to complete the laundry cycle. If a load sits in the washer overnight, so be it. I consider it a win if clothes are clean and in a laundry basket. I try to get them put away in a day or two. :)

Reading: I always felt like I had to rush through a book and move onto another so I could check them off my list. I always thought people who didn't finish books for awhile were lazy. Now I see the value in soaking good books up. I currently have 4 or 5 with bookmarks in them.

Personal Appearance: If I used to braid my hair I might take it out 6 or 7 times and redo it until it looked perfect. Now I do it once and don't worry if there is a bump or if it's a little lopsided. I feel comfortable going places sans make-up now. That used to be a big deal to me. The area of my appearance is still probably my biggest area of struggle, but I'm excited to see growth.

My Home : I used to obsess when people would come over and spend hours cleaning. An older and wiser woman told me at one point, "Don't worry about the house when you have company, "Just make sure that the food is good and the bathrooms are clean." Now I live more by that motto. I feel ok with our home looking like we live here. 

Most days my kitchen ends up looking like this by 4pm. 

This is progress to even be willing to show you this. 

I used to feel like I had to get it spotless before bed. I still try to clean it up, but I'm working on giving myself permission to not get all the dishes done and put away or all the papers and mail sorted through so I can have some down time or spend time with my hubby.

My new motto is, "Good enough."

I feel more free in this season of life than any other. I'm finally learning what it means to find my value in the One who loves me unconditionally, not in my accomplishments.

This quote from Ann Voscamp really resonated with me today:

Perhaps there was something more powerful to experience than a perfect Mother: the wonder of a committed Mother who simply humbles herself.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Letters 7 months and 2 1/2 +


You are so much fun right now! You have such a great imagination. A couple days ago you were playing on the riding lawnmower and told me you were going to hook up a trailer and deliver hay to horses. You hopped down and pretended to hook up a trailer and then said "I call you on my phone, Mom, in case you need anything." :)

You are still a great sharer with your brother but you've learned that with a teething baby everything goes in the mouth. I overheard you a few days ago give your Tigger to Gunther and tell him, "Don't lick it, just look at it!" A few days ago I told you we were going to head back to take a nap you ran over to Gunther and kissed him and said, "I love you Dunther!"

You are going to make someone a great wife someday. I chopped off my hair (6") and when I got home you said, "Mom. I like haircut!" It's nice" You then proceeded to tell me that multiple times the next few days. :) The other day I got ready to go somewhere and you said, "Is that new shirt? You pretty." I put on lipgloss for apparently the only time in the last 2 1/2 years because you said, "What that on lips? Pretty! Red on lips, red on shirt. They match. That's nice!" I'm quite sure you've learned how to compliment your mommy from your daddy. You keep watching and learning from him. He's exactly the type of man I want you to be when you grow up.

You've recently started saying things in threes. "It's nice, nice, nice outside!" "My shoes are tricky, tricky, tricky!" So cute!

One of your night time rituals is reading your 'special bible' and also looking at one of our family photo albums. Your favorite is "Mommy Daddy married" (our wedding album).

I was reading a Thomas the Train book to you yesterday and was kind of summarizing the words because it was super long and you were losing interest. Well, I wasn't paying close enough attention because I said, "..and then these engines talked to Neville, but they weren't very nice." "No!" you say, "Those not engines. They diesels." Sure enough I read the page and the trains I had been referring too were diesels not coal engines. Haha! I got a kick out of that! Smart boy!

A lunch favorite right now is nachos, but you ask for them like this, "Can I have on top chips cheese for lunch?" Another thing you say a lot when you like something is that it's your 'best'.  Ex. "Blue and cherry (yogurt) are my best!"

I love running errands with you! (Daddy does too. He always tells me funny stories when you guys come back) You are so cheerful and friendly and you do such a great job obeying. You are getting to the age where it's fun to hang out and have your companionship. You are always so excited and you have an amazing memory for who gives stickers (bank), suckers (bank where I have my business account), tootsie rolls (Fareway), cookies (Target, Hy-vee), etc... You also remember that Hy-vee has car carts and Fareway has little kid sized carts.

We love you sweet boy! We couldn't imagine life without you!


You said your first word, "Mama!" You say it all the time and it's so cute! You also have two teeth now. 

You started wrinkling your nose when you smile and laugh and it is the cutest thing! 

You push up on all fours all the time now but you're not crawling quite yet. You are very resourceful though and can get to anything you want by using a combination of rolling, twisting and army crawling. You make us laugh though because we can put you in the middle of the living room and in 30 seconds you will get wedged up against the armoire or under a coffee table or stuck in a corner. In your crib you are almost always pressed up agains the rails. (See picture below. :)

You love Caleb so much! You are always watching for him. Sometimes I have a difficult time trying to feed you because you want to see what he's up to more than eat. :)

I love that you are a cuddler. Some of my favorite times together are when you wake up while Caleb is still napping. I'll hold and snuggle you for as long as you'll let me.

You took a nap on Daddy this week- your first! Daddy loved it! I found you both sleeping on the couch and snapped a quick picture.

You have a knack for sneezing/coughing right when I get a spoonful of baby food in your mouth, spraying it everywhere. I'm used to it happening almost every feeding, but Daddy was feeding you yesterday and I forgot to warn him.  Pretty soon I heard a "Aaah!" from the kitchen and Daddy says, "He just coughed food all over me!" Me: "Oh yeah... Sorry! Should have warned you!" :)

We love you very much, Baby G!

In other news, Matt completed his 4th marathon a couple weeks ago. C went with Mimi and Boppa to give Matt water/food at a different mile markers. I came later with G for the last stop and the finish. Despite crazy weather (Sleet, cold, and heavy winds) Matt did great and had a lot of fun!