Fathers

Today I found myself crying over how beautiful the relationship between babies and fathers can be. I will always be grateful to have a wonderful husband who is an attentive father to both of his children, born and unborn.

My husband’s relationship with our daughter began while she was still in the womb — I remember waking up one night to discover him gently pushing against my stomach, then waiting for the baby to bump back, the two of them playing this game while I was dead asleep. When I made that final push during labor, it was his arms that caught her, and his voice that declared, “It’s a girl!” She had a struggle with breathing during those first moments, so when they rushed her off to the NICU, my husband went with her. Consequently, he was the first person she saw when she opened her eyes.

Now, when our daughter wakes up in the morning, the first thing she wants is to be held by daddy. One of her favorite games is to hold onto daddy’s finger and walk around the house with him. And of course, there’s nothing anywhere near as fun as being spun around and tossed into the air by daddy. I am proud to say that our daughter is a ‘daddy’s girl’.

With our new baby, my husband and I share moments of quietly sitting together and feeling the baby kick and squirm. When the time comes for this baby to make its entrance into the world, my husband’s arms will once again catch it.

Neither my husband nor I want him to be a second mother to our children — that’s my job! We want him to be a Father, strong and protective, and someone worthy of admiration and emulation. His relationship with our children is very different than mine, but it is still just as beautiful, and just as important. The wonderment at being blessed enough to witness such a relationship is enough to make me cry.

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Happenings with my baby

My baby is having more teeth grow in, which has had her very unhappy for the past few days. It was a relief when I saw those little white teeth start to poke through those poor swollen gums, because it meant that there would soon be an end to the screaming. My baby has gotten quite good at ear-splitting screeches.

This morning she’s back to making her cuter noises. One of her favorite things to do is to run around rawring at everything, so I affectionately call her my Baby Monster. It’s very precious to hear her playing make-believe with her little voice.

The past week has been full of the ups and downs of motherhood, and I wouldn’t have my life be any other way.

Chores for Toddlers

Now that my baby is 14 months old, I’ve decided that it’s time to start giving her chores. I’ll never scrub the toilet again!

Ha ha!

In reality, I’ve decided to assign her a very simple task based on her current interests: she helps me push the laundry basket to the washing machine.

I hope that by making sure that her first association with the idea of chores is fun, she’ll be more enthusiastic about helping me maintain an organized household when she’s older. Will it work? I have no idea — it will be several years before I’ll be able to see the results of my efforts. What I do know, however, is that it’s cute to watch my baby push the laundry basket, and that we both really enjoy cheering a job well done. We’re having fun now, and that’s the part that ultimately matters more.

It will be awhile yet before I’ll be able to give my baby any real chores, but working together in small ways now is hopefully preparing us for the future while giving us an excuse to play.

Timeouts and Tantrums

The baby has learned how to climb on furniture. She’s a very stubborn and determined sort of person, and since she’s decided that she wants to climb on top of the cedar chest and dance around, she’s going to climb on top of the cedar chest and dance around, come hell or high water.

So, we’ve had to implement a new procedure: timeouts. If she ignores me telling her ‘no’ enough times, she has to sit in my lap for a few minutes. I know it’s working because she’ll usually throw a tantrum.

I think of tantrums as my baby learning emotional control, and in that light they are surprisingly adorable to watch. It’s like her body is too small to contain all of the upset that she’s feeling! So I hug her and kiss her, and tell her that I love her and that I’m helping her grow by teaching her how to regain control when her emotions flare up. In the end, it’s not that bad.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Being a wife and mother is the most exquisitely delightful thing that I have ever done.

Sewing and Toddlers

Progress on my wedding dress is going very, very slowly. I planned on having it finished by the end of May, and since I haven’t even gotten all of my fabric cut yet, I’m beginning to realize that I probably won’t be able to use a lot of the haute couture techniques that I had wanted to try out — especially now that the baby is old enough to be interested in everything I do.

Before too much longer, I’ll have to admit that my baby is no longer a baby, and start referring to her as my toddler.

We’ve begun the interesting challenge of having hobbies after the baby has learned how to walk. I can no longer put her down in a pile of toys and expect her to stay there. What I can expect is for her to get up, hunt me down, then hang onto my skirt and demand to be included in whatever it is that I’m up to. Helping Mama is much more fun than playing with toys alone, after all! So, I’ve been putting aside my projects in favor of building towers, having dance parties, and playing outside. Consequently, my projects are falling behind schedule.

This is why I don’t sew professionally!

That’s an update of what I’ve been up to. It’s not very showy, but it’s been a lot of fun in its own way.

Mothers Day

For me, the best part of Mother’s Day is having a reminder to take a moment to marvel at how wonderful it is to have a child. It’s amazing how much babies grow and change during their first year, and it has been an honor to be there for my daughter every step of the way. I’m so glad that we have more years of growing and learning ahead of us.

Before I even conceived my baby, I decided to live by the philosophy that “Mother is a title to be earned.” Anyone can get pregnant and pop out a baby, but it takes a strong woman to raise happy, well-adjusted children.

I will always do my best to care for my family, so that my children will grow up proud to have me as their mother.

Raising Children

While my husband and I were out with our baby, we ran across someone who, despite the cues that we were giving, decided to make conversation about how children are such hard work, and that it’s better to have only one because it’s “easier.” Easier to be self-absorbed, I guess, because I personally don’t see any merit in having only one child. I came very close to telling the person that we were seriously thinking about baby number two, but decided that a quick escape was the preferable option.

I really love children, and my life has been considerably better since my daughter was born; I really don’t appreciate it when someone acts like I should feel otherwise. The part that really irks me is that this isn’t an isolated event, and that a lot of people think that children are a pain in the ass. What sort of generation are we going to raise if we have that sort of attitude?

I will never allow my children to be treated that way.