Well, in case you missed the news, we had a baby on September 3rd! We have five kids in tow now! (what?!!!!) So hard to believe. I've taken some time off from regular blogging, and it has been well worth it. I'm finally feeling like myself again, and fortunately, I'm looking forward to regular blogging again.
A few highlights from this month were my Birth Story for Annabel ... (if you read it you know the jury is still out on whether or not I will ever do a natural birth again... also wanted to make a big, fat disclaimer that I didn't want to come across totally rude toward the nurse midwife from the hospital. I wrote it right after it happened, so my nerves and my emotions hadn't quite recovered ;) and a big thank you to Jenny Cook for contributing a guest post this month!
Even though you can't really see it in this picture, we saw a baby river otter, not too far from my parents' dock on the TN river the other weekend.
We got out the binoculars and we could see it so well... he was eating the green algae! It was so incredible to make out his little mouth and tail and body. We watched him for quite a long time. I found this pic so you could see how cute he actually was. ;) Adorable!
As for what I've been up to otherwise, well....
The Royal We
I did some good reading this month, and I was partial to this one, since the heroine's name is Bex (short for Rebecca). Sorta sounds like Becks. It is fan fiction, yes... but it's also smart and informed. It will make you roll your eyes at the fandom, and then you'll be totally hooked on the Royals, and you might find yourself wanting to learn all there is to know about their lives and histories... if you're anything like me!
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry
I enjoyed this, and it wasn't what I expected, at all.. which was refreshing. It is light-hearted and romantic, without being cheesy or shudder-worthy (my complaint with so many rom-com books and movies). Nor did I find it too dark, although there were certainly many real-to-life themes. I am sensitive, though, and an INFP, and it didn't bother me at all. I would say read this one! My one complaint was that I wanted to get to know A.J. Fikry even better... it could have gone on another hundred pages without me minding!
A Million Little Ways by Emily Freeman
I liked this even better than Freeman's debut. It got me thinking a lot about the art "you were created to make," and how we have guilt or self-doubt or we put ourselves down, when really we should embrace, engage, and surrender. We are a poem made by God, and the art that he inspires us to make is a gift from him that we should cultivate and see grow. From the title it sounds like it would be disconnected, but it really wasn't at all! ;)
Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within
If you are thought a writer by any of your kith or kin, read this book! If you need inspiration for writing, reading this book is like taking a course on writing. It is particularly helpful if you take her advice and do the experiments mentioned in the book, such as "write in a restaurant." I tried it and her advice was solid gold!
Parenthood (season 6 - the final season- is on Netflix now)
The Swiss Family Robinson
very good if you want a realistic picture of the jihadists at work... also very sad
Whaling in Indonesia
Love and Mercy: The Life and Genius of Brian Wilson (from The Beach Boys)
The Royals: a series on Netflix
(3) Funny Things They Say/Funny...
~during our stay in the hospital~
Me: If someone takes my blood pressure one more time...
Stephen: You're going to have high blood pressure?
~reflecting on labor and delivery with Annabel~
Stephen: I kept thinking about the line from The Princess Bride: "This is the sound of ultimate suffering."
Madeleine's conversation with Siri:
Siri: Hello Mommy!
Madeleine: I’m not Mommy.
Siri: I’m not sure I understand.
Madeleine: What are you doing, then?
Siri: Working on some corny jokes.
Madeleine: Okay, Bye!
Siri: Hello Mommy!
Madeleine: Mommy, Someday… when I go to the surface, can I get cotton candy?
Me: um… (?!)
Madeleine: Not a cotton candy lollipop, just cotton candy.
Me: Are you a mermaid, or something?
Madeleine: No. I want to go to the surface when I’m a mermaid. I just want to go to the beach and see some mermaids.
Me: ...alllllrighty then. :-)
Madeleine: I had a dream last night that I went to the bug hospital. They wanted to see my bug bites. I said I have them here and here and here and here... and I showed them the biggest one... and they shotted it.
Madeleine: Mommy can I watch a show?
Me: Did you put the tops on the markers?
Madeleine: Yes! They’re all topped.
(4) Happiness means...
-So many kindnesses from others- meals, gift cards, sleeper sets, cards...
-Not being pregnant anymore
-Dates with Stephen to Starbucks, sipping a Pumpkin Spice coffee in the cool wind, and then treasure hunting at the consignment store together
- Nightly walks in the the crisp air
- Cuddling with Annabel in my bed nest
-Reading really good books on my Kindle (for iPad;)
- Pondering deep thoughts and contemplating my favorite quotes for the September Quotables series
(5) Pet peeves recently:
When you say "I'll be right back!" And all of your kids follow you downstairs or outside to the car, and then you either have to carry them back upstairs/inside or they talk you into staying downstairs/outside. AGHH!!!! ;)
(6) Eating and Drinking....
Mr. Autumn Man @ The Onion
crying. ;) My husband showed me this one, and I really was laughing so hard I was crying.
Sometimes Mamas Just Need to Let Go @ Someday (Hopefully They'll Be) Saints
This is such a good reminder when you are struggling with bitterness- you've really got to give yourself and the people in your life some grace. It's not gonna be perfect, even when it's "easier"... so why wish it away with perfectionistic feelings and disappointment in the present moment?
Richard John Neuhaus, Father @ First Things
This was a really moving piece about watching a holy man and Father die. Most definitely worth reading!
8 Novels That Are Delightfully Self-Aware About the Writing Process @ Modern Mrs. Darcy
This was just such a fun and feel-good post, and it gave me some ideas for books that I want to read, as well as highlighting a few that I have read and enjoyed. I now officially want to read I Capture the Castle.
A Rough Start @ (by) Sara Damm
This is an excellent look at what daily devotion and spirituality looks like in the life of a Catholic mother. These types of posts are few and far between- it is worth reading if you are a non-Catholic wondering what this daily spirituality looks like!
adding my link to Kelly @ This Ain't The Lyceum!
Also: Go like my Facebook page, would you, friends?... I'm getting *so* close to 100 likes!