Boy Wonder

I wonder if he knows how amazing he is.
I wonder if he knows how smart & funny & caring he is.
I wonder if he knows how much I love his imagination & talent for creating things.
I wonder if he knows that out of all the boys in the world,
God gave me him; How lucky am I?!
I wonder if he knows I love him with all my heart & soul,
even though I never carried him in my belly.
And in a world that can make a person feel invisible,
I wonder if he knows just how much he matters.

I hope I tell him enough. I hope I show him enough.
So he will know.

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Smiles, waves & inappropriate greetings

AH was being a complete angel in the grocery store this evening. No fits. No whining. No asking for something I would surely say “no” to.

And when I told her she didn’t need five packs of Jello she simply said, “Okay, mama” and we moved on.

We were enjoying ourselves as we rounded aisle 5 when AH began to wave and smile. I asked her, “Who are you waving at?”

She said, “Mama, I’m waving to that lady.”

I turned around and there was an elderly lady pushing her cart and smiling back at AH.

She was turning onto the same aisle we were and as she neared our cart, AH began waving again.

I was beaming because my little girl was being so sweet and well behaved.

Then, in true AH fashion, she smiled, continued waving and said loudly,
“Hi, old lady!”

Either the lady was hard of hearing, or so nice that she pretended not to hear what AH said. I played it off as I smiled and continued to the next aisle.

Once we got all the things we needed and got in the checkout line, the same lady got in line behind us.

Naturally.

Kids say the darnedest things. What has your kid said that made you want to hide under a rock?

Z is for Zealous Covers: Am I Mom enough? Time, please…

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Like many others who’ve seen the latest cover of Time Magazine, I got a little fired up about it.

But not for the reasons you may think.

You see, the picture isn’t what bothered me. Sure, its an awkward image (I’ve never known a mom who stands her children on chairs to nurse them) and I’m sure that poor guy is really going to catch crap about this picture once he’s in high school. But what got under my skin was the cover line, “Are You Mom Enough?”

Obviously, this, paired with a photo of a mother standing while nursing her 3 year old son (who stands on a chair to reach her breast), is meant to make you question your “enough-ness” as a mother and prompt you to buy the magazine to determine just how “enough” you are or aren’t. As though Time Magazine has the answer to what is “Mom Enough.”

This cover also brings attention to two parenting hot topics of late–breastfeeding in public (what’s more public than a photo on a major magazine cover?) and extended breastfeeding (the kid is almost 4).

To both of these topics I say, “Who cares? Aren’t there bigger issues in this world? ”

I am fine with breastfeeding in public. I’ve done it. There were a few times when I hadn’t pumped a bottle before having to leave the house. My kid got hungry, so I fed her. It’s a natural thing. There was nothing sensational about it. Nothing exposed that her head didn’t cover up. I do find it a bit ridiculous that some would suggest I feed her in the bathroom, but that’s another blog post.

And as far as extended breast feeding (nursing beyond the 1st year), technically, I’ve done that, too. This is not to say I would feel comfortable breastfeeding a 4 year old, I wouldn’t. I nursed AH until she was a little over 13 months old. She self weaned and I went with it because I felt if she was ready, I was okay with that. I might’ve continued until she was as old as 2 if she still wanted to nurse. Honestly, I’m not sure if I would’ve been comfortable beyond that; probably not, but it’s not for me to say it’s wrong for others.

The major issue with this cover, in my opinion, is the fact that it perpetuates the problem of moms being overcritical of other moms for their parenting decisions.

It’s like this cover is saying,”This is what ‘Mom Enough’ looks like.”

What about the moms who aren’t comfortable nursing an older child?
What about the moms who aren’t comfortable breastfeeding in public?
What about the moms who aren’t comfortable with breastfeeding at all?
What about breast cancer survivors or adoptive moms who may not be able to breastfeed?

This cover would suggest that those moms are less than enough because they don’t do what this woman on the cover is doing. And that, quite frankly, is complete and total crap.

As a mother you’re constantly called to question your parenting decisions and whether or not your parenting style is good enough. There are so many things up for debate on what “good parenting” is, most of which aren’t right or wrong, but rather a matter of preference or circumstance.

Breast vs. Bottle
Crib sleeping vs. Co-Sleeping
Working Mom vs. Stay at Home Mom
Pacifier vs. No Pacifier (and what age to take it away)
Spanking vs. Time Outs
Public School vs. Home School

The list goes on and on. Everyone’s got an opinion and that’s fine. But moms need to be more supportive, or at the very least, more respectful of other moms’ decisions. You don’t see dads out there saying, “Dude, your kid still has a pacifier?! You’re screwing him up, big time.”

As a mother, the decisions I make on motherhood are based on what I feel is best for my children and my family. That being said, those decisions don’t make me any better or worse of a mother, even though my methods may differ from yours. I’m not an advocate for or against Attachment Parenting or any other “parenting method.” I’m an advocate for finding what works for you as a mom and having confidence in that.

So, for every mother who unconditionally loves her children and does the very best she can to provide a loving, stable home in which they can grow to be honest, caring, confident human beings…rock on, sister.

You ARE mom enough.

Happy Mother’s Day

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This concludes the Blogging From A to Z Challenge April 2012. THANK YOU FOR READING!

Happy Blogging,

Adrian

Y is for You’ve gotta see this

A couple weeks ago, when I was trying to plan AH’s third birthday party, I wanted to get her something fun to wear for the festivities.

In my panic to get all the invites sent, party favors made, decorations finished and plan the snacks, I completely neglected to get her an outfit.

Thankfully, my sister thought to mention it to our family friend, Rita, owner of Just Too Cute online shop.

My sister told her about the Candyland party we were having and she came up with an adorable rainbow skirt and tutu with matching bows for AH to wear. Thankfully, my sister picked up a coordinating shirt and, tah dah, a birthday outfit is born!

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Pretty adorable, right?

This is the second outfit we’ve gotten from Just Too Cute and both times I’ve been really please with not only the cuteness but the quality. These items weren’t just thrown together. Each was carefully hand crafted and/or sewn with attention to detail, right down to the tags she puts on them(Hello? There is even a tag for washing instructions!).

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And durable. Her clothes are made to look sweet and dainty but they’ll hold up to the toddler test. AH can be tough on her clothes but she has a pillowcase dress Rita made for her about a year ago and it still intact and looks great. The fabrics she uses are great quality and neither outfit has faded.

Another great thing about this online boutique is that she doesn’t just do clothes. She also does coordinating accessories and jewelry. Seriously, this chick is talented.

I have a couple favorites in addition to the outfits/bows we already have. The Jessie from Toy Story inspired ruffle bottom and pinafore are so precious and could even double as a Halloween costume. And the black and white shabby chic romper is another favorite.

Needless to say, I am a very big fan of this Etsy clothing artist. I believe in her product and her business and felt it unfair to keep this little gem to myself. Her creations definitely live up to the name, Just Too Cute and thanks to my sister and Rita, AH was exactly that.

**NOTE: All opinions expressed in this review are my own and I received no monetary compensation for writing this. .

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I’m participating in the Blogging From A to Z Challenge April 2012. Go check it out–you may find a new favorite blog!

Happy Blogging,

Adrian

X is for Xanadu

In anticipation of the post for the letter X, all week long I tried to think of something to write about. The first thing I could think of that started with X is Xanadu.

Yep, an Olivia Newton John song.
That’s all I got.

But it did get me thinking. What the heck is a Xanadu anyway?

Well, I looked it up, and apparently, Xanadu means “a place of great beauty, luxury, and contentment.”

That sounds amazing. It makes me think of sitting on a white sandy beach, watching my kids play and listening the waves crash against the shore. And I’m sure somewhere in the picture is a fruity adult beverage and a massage.

My week at work was even more insane than the last and I could have totally used a little time in the lap of luxury.

So, as it turns out, Xanadu is perfectly fitting for last week.

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I’m participating in the Blogging From A to Z Challenge April 2012. Go check it out–you may find a new favorite blog!

Happy Blogging,

Adrian

W is for Want me to What?! But I don’t do that…

Outside of praying with my kids at the dinner table or at bed time, I don’t pray out loud. At least not with other people around. Partly because my conversations with God are a very personal thing and I don’t want to call attention to myself. And partly because I feel like I sound less than adequate when I pray out loud. It’s like I imagine the people listening to me pray would be thinking, “Wow. She totally doesn’t know how to pray right,” or “Um, yeah, I’m pretty sure Jesus wouldn’t have said it like that.”

However, there are times when instead of talking to God, we hear Him speak to us. Sometimes it’s a whisper and other times it comes through loud and clear. Dont get me wrong, it’s not like suddenly the clouds part and Morgan Freeman’s voice starts echoing in your mind. It’s that voice inside you that sounds a lot like your own and tells you right from wrong.

A few weeks ago, toward the beginning of this challenge, I blogged about my Good Friday nail salon experience. What I didn’t write about was what happened after I got out of the pedicure chair.

I’ll start from the beginning. If you read “F is for Friday, Finally” then you know I almost left the nail salon when I found out about the wait. But during my 30 minute wait, I was approached by a very beautiful older lady. She was very well put together and her makeup was flawless. She was someone you would assume had it all together by looking at her; not a problem in the world.

She sat next to me as I toyed with my iPhone. She told me she accidentally left her phone at home and asked if she could use mine to call her daughter. I, of course, said yes. She didn’t reach anyone so she asked to make a second call to her husband so he wouldn’t be concerned if he couldn’t reach her on her cell. Again, I gave her my phone to use.

After her call to her husband, she asked for my advice on nail color. We talked about the party she was going to and what she was going to wear. When we were done picking her color, it was my turn to hop in the massage chair and we parted ways.

But not for long.

When my toes were drying, she approached me again and requested one more phone call. She dialed her husband, this time her face looked a little concerned as she got off the phone.

As she handed me the phone back, she said, “Oh, I think I woke him from his nap…he’s going through chemo right now.”

And then I heard Him.
“Pray,” He said.

I thought, “Yes. right, pray for them. Got it.”
So I asked her his name so I could pray for him and she told me his name. To which I said, “I will be praying for y’all.” She thanked me and walked away to her manicure station.

And then it went like this…

God: “No. Don’t pray for her. Pray with her.”

Me: “Wait, what?! Ohhh, no, I can’t do that. I don’t pray out loud. With people–strangers–In the middle of nail salons.”

God: “Pray with her.”

In my arrogance, I found myself negotiating with God, giving myself a way out of it, as if there’s any bossing the Maker of the Universe.

Me: “Ok, If she’s still here when I’m done. Then I’ll pray with her,” (she was still there).
Then it was, ” Ok, if we make eye contact when I’m leaving. Then I’ll pray with her,” (we didn’t).

Whew, I thought I was off the hook. But then there was a line at the register, so I waited. Then the credit card machine froze up, and I waited.

I thought, “Fine. I’ll do it.”

I told the lady at the cash register I’d be right back and walked over, kneeled down, and said, “You’re probably going to think I’m nuts, but can I pray with you?”

She smiled and welcomed the idea. So, I prayed with her. I don’t remember exactly the words I used; they didn’t seem like mine.

I thanked her for allowing me to pray with her, she thanked me in return and we said goodbye.

And when I walked back up to the cash register, my receipt and a pen were sitting on the counter waiting for me as if to say, “There. Now you can go.”

I went back and forth over whether or not I should publish this post. If there’s anything I want you to get from reading this, it isn’t that I prayed with a stranger in public. Because it isn’t about me. I hope reading this reminds you that even people who seem like they have it all together still need prayers. I hope this post encourages you to pray with/for a stranger who needs it and, most of all, I hope it encourages you to listen to God’s voice. It’s always there, we just have to listen.

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I’m participating in the Blogging From A to Z Challenge April 2012. Go check it out–you may find a new favorite blog!

Happy Blogging,

Adrian