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Sunday, December 8, 2013

Let's Talk About Ta-ta's - The Third Time's a Charm

Soooo. Its day 5. We got Natalee's tongue tie lasered again.

Ahhhh and its FINALLY FIXED! She has tongue mobility! I am so excited to be able to type those words out. We are doing her exercises diligently and praying that this is the last procedure she will EVER have to have. I am so in love with my sweet girl.

Have you or someone you know gone through the headache of a tongue tie problem? Let me know if you have!

Will post another update on her PTT in a few weeks to let everyone know how she and I are doing. Thank you for the prayers and love!

With love


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Let's Talk About Ta-ta's - Six Months of Painful Bliss

Well, here we are again. Yet another month of painful feedings for my little sweet nursling. I've been going through this ugly cycle of wondering "Why me?" and "Ugh, when will this EVER end?" moments. But I have come to the realization that God will not give me more than I can handle, so we keep plugging along. Sweet, sweet baby girl. I must be crazy.

I don't know about you, but I don't have an awesome track record of sticking things out when they get painfully hard. Once I hear the "Oh well, you've given it your best effort. No one would blame you if you stopped/quit/gave up..." what have you, I'm outta there. "Great, that's all I was waiting to hear! Now I can stop." Do you feel like you are the same way? Anyways...

I feel like I'm going through a season in life where I am being challenged daily by God and being put through a series of tests... I honestly believe this nursing pain has been one of them. I am not angry, but I have gone through dark days, without a doubt. He has shown me SO much about myself and I am growing thankful for this rather than resentful. If someone had told me that I would still be in this pain after 6 months, there is NO way I would have stuck with it. I am so thankful that God doesn't expose things like that, because that information is not always for our benefit. Sometimes he says, "Not now, but maybe later. Just wait. I'm here for you." and so I am waiting. I am being patient. I am fighting the good fight.

And I know most of  you reading this are going to say, "Do you honestly think God cares if you breastfeed? Do you really think it matters that much? Ugh you are such a drama queen. This is just ridiculous. Put that baby on formula already.... blah blah blah" Let me tell you why is matters. Because it absolutely does.

God created a woman's body to do very specific jobs. Pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding... those are all things that he specifically designed the female body for that men cannot do. Our body's are supposed to be temples, so we need to have the respect for them that they deserve, despite body image issues. I don't understand it when people (especially Christians) say that God doesn't care, and its the parents choice, "as long as the baby gets fed, it doesn't matter." I'm sorry, but really? There are SO many examples I could pull up that would make that sound so ridiculous. That's what breasts were made to do. Yes, they are also sexy and a playground for husbands, but that's not the anatomical purpose of them. Come on people.

I'm so passionate about this so I feel like sometimes I can't stick to my main point and stay on track. Here we go again. My main point of this post was to express my ultimate gratitude to the Lord, for being there for me in this time of pain and... curiosity. Is my lack of perseverance through past trials why He has laid this in the road for me? Maybe. Maybe not. Let me tell you, though, there isn't a lot of things I feel like I can't accomplish after this experience. Pushing through day after day, week after week, and month after month of painful (and I do mean PAINFUL) feedings around the clock WILLINGLY, and to still find joy in it? Breastfeeding, in all its pain, has been hands-down one of the most amazing and joyful experiences in my life. That special and intimate bonding with my daughter is something I cherish so tightly.

Another word of thanks, because, well... He is just a great, loving, affectionate Father. My little babe has a severe posterior tongue tie. We have gone to the Dr to get this fixed multiple times, and been referred to a Dr in New York, whom I spoke with through e-mail and he sent into to my DDS in our little town so he could do the procedure here... After doing his research and our last consult, he told me that if we hadn't caught this NOW, she would have had severe jaw development problems, speech problems, possible tooth decay, and a slew of other icky issues.... and we would have never known unless I had stuck with it.

Don't you see? Sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel, doesn't seem like much of a light at all. Sometimes the "light" seems more like a painful smack in the face... "Thanks for sticking with it, here's another load of problems you can deal with. All the best." but we can't look at it that way! I am learning that if I don't find the absolute best in every situation, even if the bad far outweighs the good, I am done-for. I would have never known about these issues if I had quit. Then been forced to watch my sweet girl go through all of this later! There is nothing that He can't get me through no matter how dark the situation may be.

This might be a bit deep for a breastfeeding guru, but life lessons aren't always taught out of a book. Sometimes they are taught through sweet babies, their little mouths, and the promise of a new day.

Praying for all my mama's out there who are sticking it out, just as I am. We are in this together!

All my love.


"Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes with the morning." Psalm 30:5

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Let's Talk About Ta-ta's: Oops, I did it again.

Ack. Have you ever gone somewhere, and halfway there, realised that you forgot to slip nursing pads into your bra? Oh, I have. Its almost a requirement for my brain; I have to forget them in order to remember everything else. Lactation can be a real you-know-what sometimes... One minute, thinking about your cute little nursling, "Oh man, look at that pretty baby. Sucking on her hand (as usual..) how sweet. I just love her. Man, she hasn't eaten in a whi....CRAP! Well, there goes this shirt. Fourth one today... Dang."

Daily. This happens to me DAILY. No, not even exaggerating. If I have a spontanious let-down any other time than when she is actually eating, I have to either change or deal with the saucer-sized wet spots on my clothes. I usually just deal, otherwise I would have NO clothes. HA.

Does this ever happen to you? What are your emergency solutions?

I really should just keep an extra shirt in my car... I never learn.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

DO it with a DOula and have a BETTER birth!

I get questions all the time about why we (my husband and I) decided to hire a doula to attend the birth of Nattie. Its a fair question, living in rural Nebraska (where homebirth with a CNM is illegal... such nonsense... another blog post for another day :) ) there is not very much knowledge about what a Doula is, what they do, or how to find one.

Let me just start off by saying that if you didn't read my previous post on natural birth, it would be good to glance at before continuing to read this post. I explain that my first hospital birth with my oldest did not go well, and all the reasons why. It was a typical 12 hour birth, with typical interventions... But not at all what I wanted and I knew there could be more to it. There had to be some magical part to birth that we were missing! A new LIFE is being brought into the world, what could be more magical than that, right?!

What is a doula? A doula is birth coach. (Well, there are two kinds actually, but I'm only going to be talking about birth doulas in this post. There are also postpartum doulas, but that's a whole different post!) They give a cushion between you and the hospital staff and assist you in the late portion of pregnancy as well as the birth. They make sure you are heard and receive what you want in your birthing experience.

I will now tell you how YOUR birth could be amazing, SHORTER, less painful, more focused, give you CONTROL, and really make the most of this once in a lifetime moment between you and your child.

*SHORTER. Having a doula reduces stress on you and your family members (if there are any in the room assisting you) by taking the role as coach. You don't have to remember all those things you thought were embedded in your brain during Lamaze class. She will help you breath, change positions, massage, go to the bathroom 1,000 times, give messages to the nurses, and over all give you a much more pleasant (pleasant?!) birth. When the body relaxes, it is much easier for the cervix and pelvis to open up and baby to come out smoothly.

*LESS PAINFUL. Yes, I truly believe this. Biblically speaking, when Adam and Eve were being cast out of the garden of Eden, God said "women will experience pain during child birth..." When you go back and see the actual translation of that, it does not translate to PAIN but HARD WORK. Tell yourself this. Over, and over and over. It is going to be like running a marathon. You have to train to run a marathon, it doesn't just happen... right?! So train your body. Do your kegels, relax, DRINK WATER, eat healthy, take your vitamins, get some exercise. Train your body for the marathon. I literally told myself this my whole 3rd trimester. Don't scare yourself thinking about the pain, it will do nothing but stress you out more. Think about the process and hard work you can and will do for your child.

After you have gotten into this mind set, the doula can work wonders with helping with the pain. Breathing, hypnosis, massage, walking, showers, baths, and birthing balls are all amazing sources of pain or discomfort relief. Your doula can help with getting to to any of these. Breathing was the biggest aid for me, and she will know how to help you. She will be filled with knowledge and understanding!

*MORE FOCUSED. You have a job to do. Its time to do it, and get that baby out! My doula always reminded me of the point in the labor when every woman starts to doubt herself and say she can't do it. She told me this before I started active labor, while we were walking the halls of the hospital. "Just remember that when you think you can't, you can. And you will. God has started a good work in you and He will complete it. You can do this." BELIEVE HER when you get to that point and she tells you that you can do this. Hopefully, you will get a doula like mine, (I call her my angel, because she is!) and she will quote scripture to you while you are laboring and make you cry during every contraction... Happy tears! :) She will make you believe that you are capable of completing the task at hand and are ready to finish it.

*GIVE YOU CONTROL. The worst thing about my first birth was that I felt out of control with my own body. I felt like scare tactics, medical terminology I didn't understand, and my age were taken advantage of and I was left in pain and confused about what was happening. I was not letting this happen again. She will make you feel like you are the boss of your birth. You decide when you get checked for dilation, you decide when you want to walk around and take a break. You decide if you need some water. You decide if you need pain intervention (but you CAN get through it without it, and she will help you!) and you decide what happens to your sweet baby after they are born. You are in control when there is a great doula by your side.

How do you find a doula? Ask your nurses, get on Facebook, Google, and ask your friends. Get in touch with a local Le Leche League, they might know! The information is out there if you look in the right places. My daughter is over 4 months old, and I still talk to my angel on a semi-regular basis... She will be in my heart forever! There is NOTHING like an amazing birth to completely make you fall in love with helping people make this connection. The birth with my daughter lasted five hours TOTAL. The actual birth was less than ten minutes, and I guarantee you that those numbers wouldn't have been possible without a doula.

Pregnant? Find a doula. Interview her (or them). Hire one. Experience the best birth you can. :) Its your body and your birth! TAKE CONTROL!

With love,


Monday, September 30, 2013

Have a Natural Birth! (Your body and baby will thank you!)

Vaginal Canal.
Umbilical cord.

Yes. This blog post is about all the lovely things concerning birth, postpartum care, and the vagina. If you are easily disturbed by any of these things... Then I'm deeply sorry, but it's part of life!

Let's back track to my first birth, 3 1/2 years ago with my son. I wanted a natural birth, but did NOT prepare myself for the experience. I also was having kidney stones at the time so it just threw me for a loop.

This is going to be the short version.
~Labor was 12 hours (which is not terribly long for a first birth)
~Incredible pain, felt like I had no control over my body
~Felt disappointed in myself for getting epidural
~After my son was born, I could not see him for 8 hours because his oxygen stats were low and he had to be under a hood for oxygen. During this time he was given formula (without my knowledge) and a pacifier.
~No skin to skin time whatsoever, even when they brought him back to me. I wasn't informed about kangaroo care at the time, but the hospital staff should have encouraged it after our time apart.
~He did not want to latch at all. I had incredible, indescribable pain trying to nurse him.
~My LC in the hospital had never had a child, and had no experience in trying to teach someone to nurse. And yes, she was really the lc on staff.

Come to find out, only after the nursing journey with my daughter, my son also has a lip tie and posterior tongue tie. These could have been fixed in the hospital.

Its not hard to tell that my experience with my son was NOT at all what I wanted. I was scared, felt out of control, and like no one heard or understood what my needs were as a birthing mother.

...Then I got pregnant with my daughter and started to educate myself. Here are some pictures of my AMAZING experience with her birth

As you can see, it was a beautiful moment for all of us, especially for me. Although I was induced (Only because I was "overdue" and my midwife was going out of town for a week... I didn't want to birth with someone else.) I felt in control, and it was less than half the time of my previous birth. I labored for 5 hours, and pushed for less than 10 minutes, and my daughter was 8 pounds 11 ounces! She was no petite baby. My body was like a well-oiled machine, thanks to months of Kegals and other exercises. We did immediate skin-to-skin for 2 hours and nursed within 10 minutes of her being born. It was incredible. I never felt so connected to someone else before! We did delayed cord cutting also, so she literally came out of my body and onto my chest. Sweet, pure magic. She was BRIGHT eyed and full of energy. She didn't sleep until 6 hours had passed after her birth. Indescribable magic.

Now, let me tell you, I have NEVER felt so good in my life. The end of a pregnancy is usually miserable and seemingly infinite, and then postpartum has its own lovely drawbacks... But I felt GREAT after I had Natalee. I felt like I could have run a marathon. Energy was abundant even through cluster-feeding baby insomnia. When we left the hospital I told my husband that I couldn't believe how amazing I felt. I had nearly no pain "down there" and only had uterine pain while nursing. (Only from the uterus shrinking and going back to its non-pregnant size... Discomfort is totally normal.) 

Here are some points that I found personally from having a completely natural birth and breastfeeding experience:
-Baby comes out alert and eager to nurse.
-No foggyness or headaches from epidural.
-Urge to push without assistance.
-Being in control of your own body.
-Can walk immediately following birth. (and I WANTED to!!)
-No catheter. 
-No drugs get passed to baby.
-Rush of endorphins as baby is born.
-Much more safe for both mom and baby. No risks of spinal headaches, or any other injuries. I won't list them all here, but there are many! Look them up. :)
-No long scary needles.

Here are some benefits of immediate skin to skin or "Kangaroo Care" following birth.
-Instant bonding between mom and baby.
-Security for baby.
-Regulates baby's heart beat and breathing.
-Faster baby-to-breast nursing and encourages baby to crawl to breast on their own. (Yes, I said crawl!)
-Calming for both mom and baby after such a wild ride down the birth canal.

Those are just some that I personally found. I would not trade this experience for anything. Your body as a woman was created to do this. You are SO much stronger than you think! YOU CAN DO THIS. Don't be scared by other mom's horror stories or bullied by the hospital to get/do things you don't want to do. Birth should be a beautiful experience, not a terrifying one. My next blog post will be about the benefits of having a doula, so stay tuned for that! :)

With love

Monday, September 23, 2013

Let's Talk About Ta-ta's: To keep, or toss the cover...

I am come across a big dilemma tonight while cleaning out my diaper bag.

The breastfeeding cover.

The big piece of fabric that was created to cover up my daughter's head while she eats. It is pretty... and has these handy pockets in the corners for my nursing pads, or phone, or a little snack, or whatever I need to store in there at the time. Plus, the big hoop so I can see her while she is being covered up, but no one else can! How handy-dandy.


I think it's time to put this thing away. Lets be real here-- I NEVER use it. Every time my little nursling babe gets hungry in public, the lactivist in me goes "YES! LET'S NORMALIZE BREASTFEEDING, BABY!!! Whooooohooooo!"

I kinda wish I was kidding, but I'm totally not. I LOVE feeding my daughter in public. Every time someone comes over to talk to me, commenting on how cute my baby is, asking questions, and doesn't even notice that she is having a little snack, I do a happy dance on the inside. I make it a point to tell my husband about it. Especially when its a man. Because, you know, men get turned on when they see breastfeeding moms... Didn't you know that?! (That might be a tad passive-aggressive... Sorry) I don't think my sweet husband minds anymore, he knows how happy I get when this happens.

For example: We went on a trip to South Dakota last weekend. There is an indoor water park and its water comes straight from the Hot Springs outside the building. One of the lifeguards came over to me while nursing her and asked how old she was, then started yakking away about his 6 month old babe at home. Didn't even notice that my boob was completely out of my bathing suit, and in baby girls mouth.

I think some people expect you to feel awkward when this happens, but I never do. Its our job and duty to our kids and this planet to make people feel like nursing is normal, beautiful, natural, and so so right. Pull them onto your lactivist bandwagon and show the world what you and I both know...

Always has been, always will be!

With love.


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Steel Magnolias... Oh you bring me to tears.

I watched one of my most beloved movies tonight; Steel Magnolias. Its a 1989 classic that brings Southern Charm into your television. Lots of laughs, hilarious lines, sweet moments, but also tears... If you haven't seen this movie, I will fill you in, in the Reader's Digest version.

Long story short-- A young woman passes away after having a kidney transplant. Most of the movie revolves around her family and friends, all of whom know that her health is very fragile as a diabetic. When she became pregnant with her son, her kidneys went into renal failure and her mom decided to give her one of her kidneys. A few months after the transplant, her body rejects the donated organ and she goes into a coma that she never comes out of.

Watching this movie as a teenager, it made me sad. (duh.) However, watching it now, as a mom..... Its KILLER. I was a blubbery mess the entire portion of the movie when she was sick. I cannot even begin to imagine that kind of pain, nor do I ever care to. Losing a child is something I pray God spares me from. My children as precious to me as the sweet oxygen that keeps my lungs inflated and my body full of life.

When my son, Kyler, was sick with his ITP the first time in 2012... I thought my world was caving in. There aren't words to describe the sheer terror that engulfs your body when you hear words like "internal bleeding, brain hemorrhaging, deadly seizures" and they have to do with your child. My sweet boy was only 20 months old when he was diagnosed with this scary disease. We had to keep our watchful eye on him 24/7. Do you have any idea how hard it is to keep a 20 month old boy calm?! Its NOT easy. Boys want to be running, jumping, wrestling, playing with tractors, and jumping off of the furniture, not watching movies, coloring, and doing puzzles with their moms all day long. It was so hard to confine him to activities that were safe for him and not being able to explain why.

We would go places and know people were staring at him and his bruises. (They covered his little body like the chicken pox do.) Not their fault, its a very rare disease almost no one has ever heard of. We sure hadn't. Anytime he would get the slightest pressure on his skin -- BOOM. Bruise. No matter where it was. One of the worst things was having to hold him down to get his blood checked every week. After a while, though, he got used to it. He doesn't even cry now! What a trooper. He has always been such a strong boy.

Fast forward to today-- we have a very healthy and happy 3 year old in remission. Thank God! We are thankful for every day that we don't have to be giving him steroids or driving to doctors appointments. (He did have a relapse in Feb. of this year but we tried a new treatment that got his levels back to normal within 3 days!) I treasure my sweet Kyler. Watching this movie tonight just brought up all those old feelings.

If you have been blessed with children, hold them tight. They are the sweetest gift God could ever bless you with.

With love,


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Let's Talk About Ta-ta's: No Pain, No Gain...

When I became pregnant with my son, I knew I wanted to breastfeed him. It was never an option for me to go the formula route. Why would I when breastmilk was more healthy, and free? (I was 17, so free was a nice picture in my head.) But when I ran into the situation of him not wanting to nurse after having bottles in the hospital... My dreams of feeding him faded fast. Within three weeks, he was on the bottle full-time. My heart still aches from the disappointment I felt in myself.

Then we got pregnant with our daughter... and again, breastfeeding was the very first thing that came to mind when we started preparing for her arrival. I started re-reading books, blogs, online articles, talking to other moms, and watching videos on deep latch technique. I was absolutely determined to succeed this time around. Nothing was going to stop me. And so far, by the grace of God, nothing has.

Weeks 0-10... Lazy shallow latch, and 3rd degree lip tie that flew under the radar until I caught a glimpse at my parents house one night. Could not believe it had been missed so many times before. The pain from nursing her made my toes curl and accumulate beads of sweat on my brow. WHY was it that for almost every other mom, this was painless? No one could figure it out. After I took her to get her lip fixed, I thought all our problems were going to disappear... But oh, silly me. This pain wasn't finished with me yet.

Weeks 10+... Ruled out thrush, mastitis, and clogged milk ducts. 

...More discouragement. Everyone at this point thought I was insane for continuing to nurse her through this, but I knew I'd feel horrible for quitting. Every time I saw her smile with my breasts life-giving milk running down her cheek, it gave me hope and re-ignited the fighter in me. How could I give up something that she obviously loved so much? ( and I did too, more than I thought at the time.)

Weeks 17+ ... Possible posterior tongue tie. ( We are now at week 18, get seen by dentist in a few days.) Could this be the answer to my prayers? Not to mention all the women and my dear husband whom I know have also been praying for answers also. I just thank God for surrounding me with -mostly- encouraging friends and family who have kept the fighter in me alive. I think this was a test of perseverance for me, and more of a spiritual battle than one would assume. On the hard days, I look at the formula samples in the cupboard and think, "Oh, one won't hurt. It will fill up her tummy and give me a little break... No big deal." It is a big deal. When you know in your heart that the temptations filling your head are not only from pain and exhaustion, but from some dark place and from someone who KNOWS that you are at your weakest -- don't give in. That is where you will find your strength. 

*1 Corinthians 10:13- "No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. God is faithful; he will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you can bear. And when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you may stand up under it." 

Let me share with you the thoughts I fill my head with when I feel like giving in. 

She is worth every drop. 
I make life-giving food for her.
My body was meant to do this.
She deserves my best.
I am burning calories.
I am reducing her risk of being obese.
I am reducing both our risks of cancer.
I am giving her LIFE.
I am spending precious time with her that no one else gets to have.
She is worth this pain.
My body is an incredible machine, made in God's image.
I make the perfect blend of nutrients for her.
I give her antibodies when she doesn't feel well.
This won't last forever. 
One minute at a time.
She is so beautiful, and I love giving her my best. 

I am praying for you and if you are in a place where you feel like this is too much, and you can't handle the pain or exhaustion... Remember that God see's you. He see's your pain, the fight in you, your incredible determination, and even your exhaustion. He knows how many tears you have cried, how many times you've clenched your jaw, and how many beads of sweat have rolled down your face. Don't give up.

If you are breastfeeding and having ANY sort of problem, contact your local Le Leche League or a Lactation Consultant in your area. Don't wait until you're ready to give up.

With love


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Avant-garde Lactation Cookies! Boobie biscuits for all!

^^ Try to say that 10 times fast. :)

What does it mean? Its a term used to describe things that promote lactation. Natural or synthetic. Here are a list of some common ones used by women to help boost their milk supply.

*Fennel seeds.
*Goat's Rue
*Milk Thistle
*Flax meal
*Wheat germ
*Red Raspberry Leaf
*Brewers Yeast
*Marshmallow root

I won't even get into the synthetic, as I have personally never used them and don't have much knowledge. However, I used to drink Red Raspberry Leaf tea, take Milk Makers supplements, and other natural "boosters." I don't really need much of a supply boost, but I thought I would try to come up with my own recipe for little biscuits to pop in the freezer for any time I might need one. You will find the recipe below. Enjoy!

Boobie Biscuits 

1/2 C self-rising flour
1/2 C coconut flour (has more fiber than regular flour)
3/4 C honey
2 TB flaxseed meal
2 eggs
2 TB water
2 TB brewers yeast
1/2 ts himalayan salt (the pink kind)
3/4 C old fashioned oats
3.4 C Pumpkin Flax Granola (Or just a plain organic granola of your choice, this is my favorite.)
1 ts vanilla
1 ts cinnamon
1/2 C coconut oil
1/4 C coconut milk
1/4 C wheat germ
1/4 C dry roasted peanuts (for crunch!)
1/4 Heath bits (For yumminess :) ) 
2 TB chia seeds

*Combine coconut oil and honey (This would be referred to as "creaming" in a traditional recipe with butter and sugar.)
*Mix water with flax meal. It will become like a gel almost.
*Combine all dry ingredients, minus oats and granola.
*Add flax mixture, to honey/coconut oil and mix well.
*Add dry ingredients and mix well.
*Add granola, peanuts, Heath bits, coconut milk, brewers yeast, and chia seeds.
*Make sure everything is combined well.

~Use a scoop or spoon to make about 25 "biscuits" and bake for 15 min on 350*F. 

Eat with a glass of coconut milk and enjoy!!

With love,

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sick babies and coconut oil.

I hate it when my kiddos are not feeling well. I really really really hate it. I just sit there and wish I could take away all the discomfort and irritations. Slathering their little noses in coconut oil, sucking out the boogies, and giving lots of sympathetic kisses.

"I have carried you since you were born; I have taken care of you from your birth. Even when you are old, I will be the same. Even when your hair has turned gray, I will take care of you. I will sustain you and I will rescue you." Isaiah 46:3-4

Sometimes its hard to trust that God knows better for our kids than we do, how could it be possible that anyone love them more than us?? Someone that you grew inside your body, nourished with your breasts, and endured pain, sweat and tears over. Your child; God loves your child more than you could ever dream of loving them. Its a pretty mind-blowing concept. 

He Gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like an eagle; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint. -- Isaiah 40:28-31

Restless nights and long days make for a weak spirit. Who do you run to when you feel as though you can't go on any longer without a nap or hour of rest? It sounds so silly, but when those hours hit, they hit hard. Satan knows when you hit you with doubting thoughts and lies. Don't buy into those, God is bigger than all that. Give Him Your burdens and tiredness. Give Him Your stresses and doubts.He will carry you to tomorrow. :)

"Lord, I pray that you would surround my home with healing and comfort. Give me wisdom in knowing how to provide for my children and comfort them in times of runny noses,sore throats, sneezers, and watery eyes. Help them to stay hydrated and nourished. Give me the patience to handle these sick days with grace and kindness, not letting my tiredness fog my spirit. We love you and praise you for being our great and Mighty Healer. Amen."

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Stuck in a rut.-

Breastfeeding has landed me in a sticky situation.

My boobs hurt. All. The.Time.

Now-- this is not the norm, so for those of you that are pregnant and awaiting your beautiful first feed, take heart, I am just the exception to the rule. Breastfeeding should not give any discomfort after your initial "boobie initiation" from your little nursling. ANYWAYS.....

I LOVE lifting weights. Love it. My husband got me hooked and I did it up until I started getting morning sickness with my sweet girl. (I know, I know... exercise is supposed to help m.s. but it did NOT help mine, and who wants to puke at the gym?!) Since having her, I have learned that lifting weights can lead to clogged milk ducts. Yuck, no thanks. And when I run or jump, so do the girls, and that does not feel good in the slightest. Soooo that leads me to my question...

What do you breastfeeding moms do for a good workout? How do you keep the girls on lock down? I would love some input. Share your wisdom with me!

Much love


Friday, September 6, 2013

Lets talk about ta-ta's.

BOOBS. We all have them. Its no secret. My 3 year old will gladly tell you (in great detail) how baby sister eats moms boobs for dinner. He might also tell you that she will eat pancakes instead someday. But not now, cause "She's a baby! Babies eat their mommy's boobs."

WHY is it that my 3 year old is so cool with this, and the adult audience is not?

Breasts are everywhere. they are on billboards, TV, the Internet, doctors offices, public pools, CHURCH, school... you get my point. Boobs are everywhere, exposed for the eye to see. But I bet you won't hear anyone tell those nice girls to cover up their chest, because too much of the fatty tissue is showing. But oh boy- whip out a boob to feed your sweet baby, and everyone gets their panties in a wad. WHY is that?!

I am very thankful that I have only had some confused looks shot my way, and no real rude comments... Well not really. Plenty of women (including breastfeeding women... HA!) have told me that its better to keep that "private" and use the excuse of bonding to keep it covered up. YES, breastfeeding is amazing for bonding and I bond with my daughter every time she eats. So does that mean I (we) stay home because God-forbid I don't bond in privacy with her every time her little tummy grumbles? I have a life too, ya know!

Obviously, this subject is very near and dear to my heart. Women should feel empowered because of this amazing and incredible gift God has given them. I mean, think about it. I provide COMPLETE and perfect nutrition for her. From my body... without even trying! The human body is capable of amazing things, breastfeeding being one of those. Its natures perfect food. The Bible talks about breastfeeding so beautifully and does not once say, "You should put the baby to breast in private, so that no man see's your breast tissue. It will make him go into a sexual sin." Do you think Jesus himself was breastfeed under a cloth, because I'm betting, he wasn't! And I also bet that if you ask almost any man, he will tell you that seeing a mother breastfeeding doesn't do anything for him in the arousal department. Heck, I almost bet that in most cases, men won't even notice a breastfeeding mom and her baby!

This country is in an uproar over obesity rates, drop-out rates, and so forth. Breastfeeding alone slashes the chances of your child being obese, and has been proven to boost IQ. Hmm.... Yet the rate of formula feeding mom's is increasing. Think they are related? Thinks it's time for a change and time to loosen the reins on moms who believe that breast is best? I think so.

I am in NO way saying that I think you are a bad mom if you decide to go the formula route. I had to do so with my son, but I did not choose it. If I could go back, I would have sought out more help. Living in the past is not going to change that, so I have more than moved on. However, I do disagree with mom's who don't even try and easily could. God gave you an incredible gift of life! He created women with amazing body parts that men do not posses, and they do a job that a mans body could not do. Why not take advantage of that? Why not give your baby the best nutrition you could offer?

Whatever you decide, I hope that you give the breastfeeding mom a little more respect next time you see her. If she is anything like myself she will greatly appreciate it. Now lets get out there and nurse in public to normalize breastfeeding for generations to come!

Take my words with a grain of salt, and much MUCH love.


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Learning how to be a wife is a tricky tricky business...

I love my husband. I mean, I REALLY love him. A lot. So why is it that I feel like I'm not that great of a wife to him sometimes? Why do I feel like an inadequate life partner for him?

Its probably because I am.

I'm a HUGE screw up. (Trust me, a big, GIANT one...) 

BUT -- I have an even bigger God who can teach me how to be a better wife. He can show me how to give my respect, love, and honor to my best friend; my dear husband. He can assist me in becoming a mother my children can look up to and a wife that my husband considers himself blessed to have... 

I have a goal of becoming the best Proverbs 31 wife and mom that I can. What does that entail exactly? In my translation of the scripture, it means being productive and not lazy, being kind, slow to speak, slow to become angry, preparing healthy meals for my family, keeping up with the house, and being financially smart. I have a lot of learning to do,  but I am determined to be the best I can. The beautiful thing about being a wife and mom is that you can ALWAYS improve. There is no "end" to the process. 

Just a short thought for today. :)


Kale POWER salad!

Kale. Its pretty much the most delicious green there is. Plus it's FILLING!! Eat a giant bowl of this salad and you will feel like a million gazillion bucks. :)


1 large bunch of curly kale
5 large strawberries, diced
1 grilled chicken breast, diced
1 medium size cucumber, diced
3 tb hemp seeds
1/4 C of your favorite vinaigrette
1/4 C shredded carrot
1/4 C shredded raw beets

Tear kale leaves from stem, as it can be woody and tasteless. Tear it into bite size pieces.  Add all other ingredients into a large bowl, and devour with a fork.

Happy eating!

Jump-start your day with Avocado mash up!


1 beautifully ripe avocado
1 banana
1 tb UNSWEETENED cocoa powder
1 tb coconut oil
1 ts ground flax seed
3 tb hemp seed
1 ts chia seed
1 pinch sea salt

Mash all ingredients together. Consume. FEEL GREAT!!

I usually also eat a piece of crunchy fruit with this, as the texture is pretty one-note. Sooo yummy though!!

Happy eating!

Thai-inspired Peanut Chicken Wraps

YUM! These are delicious. My son loves to eat the filling on its own. *Keep in mind that its best to get as many organic ingredients as possible, although if you are like me and live in small-town Nebraska, that might be quite difficult. Do the best you can. :)

You will need:
-Dry roasted peanuts (1/2 C)
-Raw broccoli slaw (1 bag, about 16 oz)
-Grilled chicken breasts (3 breasts, sliced)
-Tortillas (4)
-Soy sauce (1/4 C)
-Honey (2 TB)
-Orange zest, and juice (all zest off orange, 1/2 orange juiced)
-Garlic powder, pepper (to taste)
-Coconut oil (1-2 TB depending on kind of skillet being used, non-stick versus stainless steel)
-Cilantro (1 large handful, chopped fine)

Start off by cooking the broccoli slaw in coconut oil in a skillet for about 5-10 min, until soft. Add peanuts and continue to cook another 5-10 min. Add seasonings, honey, orange zest and juice, soy sauce and lastly - cilantro. (Don't add too early because it will burn and become bitter.) Add chicken to pan, then put into tortilla... Roll up and EAT! I had fruit and some organic kettle cooked chips with mine. :)

 Happy eating!

Avant-garde. a little about me!

You might be thinking, what the heck does that mean? How does it apply to motherhood? What has this crazy lady been smoking?

Well, I'll tell you. (About avant-garde, not what I've been smoking. That's top secret. ;) )

Unorthadox. Hippie. Flower-child. Radical. Forward-thinking.

I am an old-school mom in a new-school world. I choose to put cloth on my baby's bum instead of chemical infused disposables. We breastfeed instead of choosing GMO filled formula. We eat clean instead of processed. (MOSTLY. We are FAR from perfect.) We co-sleep and follow our parenting instincts instead of leaving our baby in another room in her own bed. We smother her in love and comfort when she sheds tears, and when she is happy. We do what we FEEL is best. Not what we've been told is best. Not what doctors and other "veteran" moms and dads tell us is best. We follow our instincts. God gave us these instincts for a reason, and I intend to listen to them to the best of my ability. This includes not injecting vaccines into my children's bodies. Instincts. Research. Knowledge. They are powerful weapons!

In this blog, I will open up to you my heart and mind. My husband and I do what we feel is best for our family, and I know that you will do what you feel is best for yours. No judgement here, we all want the same end result; happy and healthy kiddos.

When I became pregnant with my son at 17, I was extremely scared and didn't know the first thing about being a mom. However, I knew I had a responsibility to myself and son to educate myself and be the best mom I could. With the help of my family and encouragement of friends, I graduated high school and got a good job as a CNA working in the local Alzheimers Care Center. I had a good life.

I raised him as most modern moms, with formula (although I TRIED  to breastfeed. Lack of knowledge and professional support cut that journey to a short 3 wks.) disposable diapers, daycare, and crying-it-out. I always felt like he deserved more of me. I brought him into my bed and kept him there until he was 6 months old, and they were a precious 6 months that I will always treasure. Right then I knew that this was a stepping stone to a way of life that felt right.

My husband and I got married when my son was 18 months old, and he is now 3... still crawling into our bed most early mornings! Although a 35 lb boy stepping on our legs is not the most glorious feeling in the world, snuggling with him is. Having both my kiddos in my bed with me is one of my favorite things in this whole world. Who could ask for more?!

I welcome you to join me on my journey of parenthood, winging it and doing the best I can by following my gut and treating my children with love and kindness. ( Not forgetting that its ok to be imperfect and that EVERYONE makes mistakes.)

With love

Feeling a little sweeeeepy.

Feeling so blessed that I have my husband on my left side and my beautiful 15 week old daughter on my right side. What could be better? 
They are both sleeping soundly, I think I might join them.