Thursday, March 28, 2013

Children are a blessing

With each month, Isla becomes more and more fun. I have to admit though; I have truly enjoyed every single stage. I loved snuggling her close to me as a newborn, discovering one another for the first time and being in utter amazement of the miracle of her life. She was so delicate, fragile and completely dependent on me. I loved it. She gave me a new found purpose.

As she began to develop and hit milestones, I loved the cooing and ohhing… I would press my mouth against hers and we would coo together. Oh I could live in that moment forever! Her sweet innocent face pressed up against mine. Next she began to roll… I would lie her down and watch her tiny muscles working so hard to accomplish her task of getting from back to belly or belly to back. Something so simple, but I was astonished of her accomplishment. 

She always had great head and neck control… even as a newborn. We knew sitting up would be an easier milestone for her to meet. It didn’t take long from her to go from sitting up, to crawling and within two weeks of crawling she was pulling up on everything, standing solo and cruising along furniture. 

Now we know, walking is next and I feel like it’s just a matter of time before she takes off. With each stage, I continuously find myself amazed at her. I am so proud of her and so proud and honored God thought so much of me to bless me with such a precious being.

And just think... we once listened to a doctor tell me that it was unlikely for me to even be able to get pregnant. :)

Psalm 113:9
He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyous mother of children. Praise the Lord!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Tired and weary...have Faith

I am amazed at how much strength the Lord gives me. Isla has been sleeping HORRIBLE lately. She has been having a really hard time teething, she has hit some recent milestones (standing and cruising along the furniture on her own) and has also been a little under the weather. Needless to say, she has been having a hard time getting comfortable and wanting her mommy a lot through the night!

Lying awake at night, I'll think... How am I going to make it through the day tomorrow? How am I going to get up on time in the morning? How am I going to keep my spirits up and have a good outlook each day? But despite the lack of sleep, despite the worry and frustration... the Lord gives me strength to not only get through the day, but accomplish my tasks and then some! Yes, I'm tired... I'm a mother and wouldn't expect less...but I know that this too shall pass and soon be a memory of my sweet baby's sleepless nights. I will look back and cherish these hours we spent together rocking, swaying, singing lullaby's and snuggling.

Another thing that has happened in response to these sleepless nights is that I have begun to pray more. Lying awake after Isla has fallen back to sleep, I find myself seeking Him, praying more and having more time with Him. Walking the floors with my inconsolable sweetie, I find myself seeking Him even more. Praying for guidance, relief and comfort. And I know that He is seeking me... drawing me near to Him during these sleepless nights and showing me to have continuous faith in Him that he will see us through the most difficult of times and leave us with a sweet memory of what we thought was a hard night.

Psalm 25 teaches us to seek God in the hard times, no matter for what reason we are in those hard times.

In you, Lord my God,
    I put my trust.
I trust in you;
    do not let me be put to shame,
    nor let my enemies triumph over me.
No one who hopes in you
    will ever be put to shame,
but shame will come on those
    who are treacherous without cause.
Show me your ways, Lord,
    teach me your paths.
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
    for you are God my Savior,
    and my hope is in you all day long.
Remember, Lord, your great mercy and love,
    for they are from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth
    and my rebellious ways;
according to your love remember me,
    for you, Lord, are good.
Good and upright is the Lord;
    therefore he instructs sinners in his ways.
He guides the humble in what is right
    and teaches them his way.
10 All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful
    toward those who keep the demands of his covenant.
11 For the sake of your name, Lord,
    forgive my iniquity, though it is great.
12 Who, then, are those who fear the Lord?
    He will instruct them in the ways they should choose.
13 They will spend their days in prosperity,
    and their descendants will inherit the land.
14 The Lord confides in those who fear him;
    he makes his covenant known to them.
15 My eyes are ever on the Lord,
    for only he will release my feet from the snare.
16 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
    for I am lonely and afflicted.
17 Relieve the troubles of my heart
    and free me from my anguish.
18 Look on my affliction and my distress
    and take away all my sins.
19 See how numerous are my enemies
    and how fiercely they hate me!
20 Guard my life and rescue me;
    do not let me be put to shame,
    for I take refuge in you.
21 May integrity and uprightness protect me,
    because my hope, Lord, is in you.

I hope you are sleeping well, but if you find yourself lying awake in the middle of the night... reach out to Him in prayer. I promise He will be listening and see you through tomorrow.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Missing my baby

It really never gets any easier leaving Isla throughout the week. Every day I drop her off and reluctantly hand her over to the caretakers. I savor every sweet second I have with her as we walk in the door, drop off her things and then hand her off to start her day. I probably kiss her at least 20 times between the car and dropping her off. I place my cheek against her soft skin and smell her baby scent. I toss her in the air to get a smile from her that will take me through my day. 

Oh what I would give to be able to spend every day with her. To watch her grow, develop, sleep and play throughout the week. I miss her so much. My heart aches for her when we are not together. I wonder what she is doing, if she is having a good day, if her teeth are bothering her, if she is learning something new and if she is missing me. At 5pm everyday my mommy switch is turned on and I cannot wait to pick up my sweet girl and breathe her in. I only have a few precious hours with her awake throughout the week and I relish every single second I have with her.   

She is my world and everything I do, I do for our family. Really missing my peanut today!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Strength in Him

I'm loving this verse today! Gives me such strength through Him and makes me feel like I can face anything as long as I stay grounded in His word and have FAITH.

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
– Ephesians 6:13-16 (NIV)

Some days I allow myself to become overwhelmed and stressed out. This is exactly when the evil one slips in and attacks my life. When I allow myself to get caught up in the unnecessary stresses of this world, I let down my guard and leave room for poor comments, a bad attitude and depression to slip in. But when I guard myself from this with His word and keeping Him close to mind, then I am armed to face things more positively and with His support. Standing firm in His word and with His help, I can make it through any challenge this world throws my way!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Shake that booty!

Lately, Isla has started moving to the beat of the music. She has always loved music. She goes to sleep so much easier when we play classical music and she loves music time at school. Recently, if the song has a fast beat she will start to bounce up and down to the beat. 

It’s so cute to watch her learn her own rhythm.  I love holding her in my arms and dancing with her through the house. We twirl and dip. She always laughs at me and my crazy good dance moves. 

She has been so much fun recently. Love love love my sweet girl!

Monday, March 11, 2013

9 Months Challenges & Happenings

Nine months has proven to be the most challenging month yet! Lots of milestones being hit this month.

Teething - Isla is finally getting some teeth! Her two bottom teeth are working through slowly, but surely. The bottom right tooth has already cut through and its just a matter of time before the pearly white on the left side pokes through. I can also see signs of the top two teeth. I think her teeth are going to come in slowly though. I thought for sure the bottom ones would be in last weekend, but her little gums kept swelling back over them. She has been a little more fussy than normal lately, but it's hard to tell if that's from teething, her cold, shots or the separation anxiety she has been going through.

Sick - Since we've started daycare we've all pretty much kept a cold, especially me and Isla. Its like a vicious cycle. I think we've all managed to be well maybe a total of 2 weeks since January. Its frustrating, but hopefully by this time next year our immune systems will be a lot stronger. Its also been frustrating for me because there is very little medicines I can actually take and it seems each time I get a cold, I wind up with a sinus infection. Isla and I have both been through several rounds of antibiotics. Needless to say, we are ready for cold season to be behind us. For the most part, Isla deals with her colds very well. Even when we all had the flu in January, she was smiling and Joel and I both felt miserable. It amazes me how resilient she is! Most recently, the cold we've had has been a little harder on both of us. She has wanted me to hold her through the night. She lays over on my chest and moans like she is in pain. Makes my heart melt! I feel so bad for her. Every time I get her to sleep, I end up coughing and waking her up. Its been frustrating for all of us, but we are hoping the worst is over.

Shots - For the most part, Isla has done very well with all her shots. She has only been fussy at four months and then over the weekend after her nine months shots. For some reason, she the Hep B. shots seem to make her fussy. Luckily, this was her last round and she only had to have one shot this time.

Separation Anxiety - For the past two weeks, Isla has really wanted her momma! I knew this phase was quickly approaching and boy, has it been hard! She cries for me when we leave her at daycare or after lunch and if she is upset through the night, she only wants me. It makes it so hard to leave her and there has definitely been tears shed from both her and I. Its also nerve racking because I get no time to myself. I miss her so much during the day, so of course I want to be with her and love on her as much as possible when we're together, but it's hard to not be able to go take a shower or run to the store without her crying for me.

Disciplining - I had no idea that we would have to start thinking about disciplining this early! I always thought of this coming along at toddler years... but I was wrong! Lately, Isla has been testing the waters. She sees what we will allow and also is starting to understand what "No" means. She will cry to get what she wants and its super hard for me to let her cry, but I keep trying to tell myself...she is okay. I, of course, never want to see or hear her cry... but that is foolish, I know. I'm also extremely tender hearted so the minute she starts crying my instinct is to console her and make it better. But, at the same time, I have to realize sometimes its what is best for her. As much as I don't want her to cry, I also don't want her to throw fits and tantrums. Being a parent is so hard, but I'm learning so much!

Personality - At nine months, Isla's personality really has started shining through. She loves the bigger kids and is a very social baby. She is always busy and loves to explore! She is very curious and likes to investigate things. She loves to laugh and smile. She has a very strong will. She is loving.

At her 9 month well check we learned, her head is growing! Her little peanut head has moved up from 25% to 50%. She is 50% for length and is 27 inches long. For weight, she is 75% and is 20.4lbs!

So much fun and learning with every milestone and month. This has definitely been the best and most challenging time of my life!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Letters to Isla Rae: Happy 9 Months!

Dear Isla Rae,

Happy 9 months sweet girl! Nine months in and nine months out… time is flying by. You are growing and changing so quickly that I feel like I can barely keep up. I try to savor all of our sweet moments together and archive all of these memories, but time is passing by so quickly and it seems every day you do something new! 

I love all of your little Isla-isms. You have the sweetest grin and you flash it at all the appropriate times. You love when I ask you questions and pause for your response. You’ll raise your little eyebrows and bat your eyes at me. I can only imagine what you are thinking. 

At nine months, you are starting to talk more. You LOVE saying “dada” and say it all the time. Occasionally, we’ll hear you say “mmmama”, but mostly it’s Daddy that wins out. I just love to hear your sweet voice. You have also said ball, eyes, doggie and Isla. You say your name often and it’s so funny to hear because you always say it in a deeper voice than normal.

You are busy. You don’t want to be held and cradled any longer. Now that you are mobile, you want to be on the go non-stop. You love crawling and pulling up. You will pull up on everything. You also have started playing on your knees. You are not one to just sit and play… got to be moving and grooving.

You love music. You love to clap to the beats and dance with me. You also like it when I sing. Gone are the days of silence in the car or listening to the radio. Now, we sing songs and clap as we ride along and you love it. Your little eyes light up every time. It also calms you down if I’m not in the back seat with you. Your favorite is “Old McDonald” and “If Your Happy and You Know It”. You also really like to listen to classical music when you sleep. You will be fighting sleep so hard and the minute I turn piano tunes on, you calm right down and drift to sleep.

Your pincer grabber skills are getting good! I love to watch you feed yourself. You take your pointer finger and make a hook to pick up the piece of banana and then hook it in your cheeks. It’s so cute! We’ve made it through all the veggies and fruits and starting to move to more table food. You make such a mess, but it’s always fun. 

Still no teeth, but they are coming! Your bottom two are shining through so I know it’s just a matter of time before the cut through. So far, you’ve done pretty well with teething. You’ve been a little fussy, but that’s understandable. 

Lately, your sleep has been off. You are back to waking up every couple hours. I’m not sure if it’s the teething or just because you are learning and growing so much. Either way, you’ve always been a challenging sleeper. You and I both have bags under our eyes! I’ve definitely aged more in the past nine months than I did during my other nine years in my twenties. It’s okay though because I know what caused these wrinkles and I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

At our last doctor appointment last week, you weighed 19.4lbs. You are still wearing 6-9months clothes, but can easily wear 12mo too. We just roll up the sleeves. Your thighs are still chunky and they are one of my favorite things! I love your sweet rolls. You are so adorable. Your hair is growing a lot and really getting thick! I love it when you wake up with it sticking out everywhere in the mornings. It’s so sweet to see you have bed head hair (your dad’s hair is always like this too). 

At school, you love playing with the big kids. You have really always loved the older kids. You love your cousin Macie. She can always make you laugh. A little girl, Layla, who is about 3 years old, pretends like she is your mommy at school. Each morning when we drop you off, she is there waiting for you. Sometimes I will stand there for a few moments to watch you two playing together. It’s so precious to watch you growing and becoming a little girl. 

These past 18months, carrying you inside and outside of me, have been the best, most life changing and meaningful months of my life. You have shown me a love like I have never known before. When we are a part my heart aches for you and I strive to be better every single day for you and your dad. Thank you for bringing me such incredible, indescribable joy. I love you so much sweet girl!


Friday, March 1, 2013

That's my name, don't wear it out!

So for over a month now we have been hearing Isla say her name… she will get stuck on one word a lot and say it over and over again. Usually, it’s “dada” and she’ll repeat it 5-10 times.

Since she’s been learning body parts, she’s been stuck on “eyes” lately. It’s so cute how she says “eyes” in the sweetest softest voice. It’s almost like she is whispering it. She will poke me right in the eye as she says it too.

This week at school, her teacher told me that she thinks she is saying her name too. I told her I’ve thought that for a while now. She said she will say it over and over again until she is yelling, “ISLA!”

I love her sweet little name and love to hear her say it even more. I’m looking forward to hearing her vocabulary continue to develop. She hasn’t said mama in a while since dada is way easier to say. I’m really looking forward to hearing her call me mama again.