Wednesday, August 29, 2012

You're So Vain...

So this post is a little embarrassing for me to write, but I need some accountability here.  In the past several months, I have been taking on a "less is more" philosophy.  We had a yard sale, and I made some good progress cleaning out things that we don't use.  I begged Adam to get rid of things/clothes he doesn't need anymore, but I still have some things of my own that could free up some major space in our little house.  

Yes, I have been hiding a dark secret under our bathroom counter.  Apparently I have been hoarding........ 

beauty products.

In all honesty, I knew I had a good amount of products down there, but I didn't realize how much was down there.  I mean really, who needs 4 cans of mousse and 3 cans of hairspray?

Hair stuff
Body stuff

Smell goods

Basket is random makeup I don't use very often, and makeup bag holds makeup I wear every day.  Oh look, is that another can of hairspray?  Make that 4 hairsprays total.

And no, the random makeup was not already organized in this little basket.  It was shoved in plastic drawers and other random places.  

So given that I own half of the contents of Walgreen's, I have put myself on a makeup strike.  I have actually been on it the past month or more.  I am not buying any makeup unless I have completely run out of something (for example, mascara.  I use up my mascara, and I don't have any old ones I've held onto because they start growing bacteria after 3 months.  Yuck!  That should be the only thing I would need though).  I am also ashamed to say that it has probably helped us out a ton financially.  I don't know what it is, but I just have trouble going into Walgreen's or somewhere like that without feeling like I need to buy something that smells good or is supposed to make me look pretty.  I think that is the world getting into my head. The world gives us girls the message that we are never pretty enough....or we would be pretty enough if we just had this one product.  It's crazy.  So, enough!  

I am calling this "Project Use It Up!"  Catchy, I know.  :)  I am going to use up all of my products.  Yep, all of them!  

Well, except for these.

Headed to the trash!

These guys are either super old, all used up, or a prime example of why you don't buy a supposed to be expensive foundation off of ebay. (Josie Maran!)  

So anyway, "Project Use it Up!"  I am doing this with not only beauty products, but shampoo, conditioner, chapstick, etc.  All of that stuff that we (or I anyway) never actually use up before buying the next thing.  So far, this has actually been a very freeing experience.  I like not having to feel like I need to buy something.  I think worldly stuff just gets in the way.  I believe the more stuff we have, the more our stuff owns us.  Think about it, we get bigger houses because we run out of room.  But how much stuff are we holding onto that we really don't need or use anyway?  I don't want to be owned by my stuff.  I want to have room to breathe, room to serve others, room to fill my heart with Christ.  This is just one of the little steps I am doing to clear my head and my heart so that God can have all of me.  If you would like to join me on "Project Use It Up," just leave me a comment below and let me know!  It feels much more official and accountable if you tell others you are doing it.  Have a great day!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Mommy's Day Out

Yesterday I had a much needed vacation.  You know you're a mom when you consider a trip to the gynecologist  by yourself a vacation.  It was bliss.  This was the first time I have been away from August by myself for more than a quick trip out.  I have been on about 3 dates with Adam and a trip to the grocery store.  That's about it.  So I took full advantage.

My husband has Fridays off, so he kept August.  I went to my 9:30 appt with the lady doctor, and then I was a free woman!  I called Adam to check in, and he reassured me that everything was fine and that I should get out and enjoy the morning.  I didn't argue. :) There was some milk stashed in the freezer that I had pumped, so they were set.  I had $11 in my wallet that was my spending money I had been saving for a rainy day, so I picked up a caramel frappuccino, and I was ready to go!  That brought me down to $5 and some change.  Sad, but worth it!

I stopped in at my favorite store.  It was so nice to walk around with no agenda, just browsing.  I saw several things that caught my eye.  I reminded myself before I went in that I have $5 ish, and that's it.  No more!  It was kind of freeing actually not feel like I needed to buy everything I saw.  Here are a few things I liked though. :)

I really like this pillow.  I love stripes and the nautical look.  This pillow was HUGE, and it was only $9.99.  I definitely would have gotten it if I could have!

This is my favorite aisle.  No doubt.  Adam can attest to that.  I love pillows for changing out decor.  It's a lot easier than changing a paint color or something like that.  I like to choose neutral furniture, neutral paint, and neutral bedding, and then I can switch out the pillows to change the look or colors of the room.  Saves lots of money too!  

I looove faux plants.  They actually make ones that look real now.  I have  them in almost every room of the house.  I can't keep live plants.  They don't survive.  So fake plants= money saved! :)

I love this!  I saw it sitting on a shelf with a twin.

Our kitchen opens up into the living room, so it would be really cool to have these up in the corners of the  opening.  It would give some character I think.  They were $25 a piece. 

This pot was pretty cute.  It was only 7.99 I think.  It would be neat for putting  a (real) house plant in, or  putting your kitchen utensils in.  

I didn't check to see the price on this, but this would make a really cute toy chest for August's nursery.  It doesn't have  hinges, so no smashed fingers, and the top is really light so he could open and close it easily.  Plus the style matches his vintage beach themed room.

While I was there, I decided to try on some clothes.  Do you know that I have never tried on clothes just for fun?  Why not!

I really like this skirt.  So feminine.  It was $15.

I also found a bag of like 20 spools of ribbon for only $5!  It was about 3/8" wide, which was the perfect size for a craft project  I have been wanting to do, but I wanted to check out some other stores before I committed my $5. :)  So I headed over to Michael's.  I LOVE crafts.

After making my rounds through the store, I found the dollar bin.  They had a ton of cute things in the dollar bin.  I ended up getting a pack of 8 Paula Deen greeting cards and really cute bag of confetti.  I like to keep blank greeting cards on hand (especially when they are so cheap) because you can use them for thank you cards or birthday cards.  It's a definite money saver since you can spend $3 plus stopping at Walgreen's for one birthday card.  I got the confetti for a sensory bag I plan on making for August.  I think it will be something quiet to hopefully keep his attention during church.  I'll do a post on that after I make it.

With $2 and some tax down, I had $3.75 left.  I headed over to Joann's fabrics.  I have never been there before, but I had been wanting to check it out.  I really wanted to get some fabric scraps for a project, but I wanted some ribbon too.  I was excited when I found this bin!

  I found some scraps that fit into the budget, but then I remembered a few scraps I had at home and decided I needed some ribbon more.  I wasn't heartbroken over the pack at TJ Maxx since it had several spools that I didn't care for.  I ended up finding 3 little spools of ribbon I loved but didn't have a price.  I planned for my $3.75 not to cover it, but I went to check out anyway.  Turns out, each spool was $1, so final cost was $3.28!  Covered it with change to spare. :)

Here's my final "haul!"  

It's amazing how much you value a dollar when you're limited to working with the few bucks you have in your wallet.  I enjoyed the challenge of stretching my money, but more than that, I enjoyed the break.  It was so nice to just get out and go.  I missed August dearly, but I felt like a new woman by the time I got home!  I think every mom needs a break every once in a while.  I'm so grateful to Adam for encouraging me to spend some time out.  He is one awesome hubby.  Oh, and I have to also brag that he got August down for his morning nap this morning and then made us pancakes and eggs for breakfast while I snoozed on the couch.  My allergies were all out of whack for some reason.  So, I am officially spoiled!  What do you do for some mommy time?  Anything you like to do at home for some mommy time when you can't get out?  I hope your Saturday is wonderful!  I will definitely be enjoying mine!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

God Provides

Money is super tight right now around the Hare house.  I will go into more detail about that in another post.  Anyway, I am working with a very small grocery budget.  This past week, we didn't have enough money to buy any fresh fruits or vegetables besides bananas.  We had to get the basics like bread, milk, lunch meat, just the staples for day to day living and for packing Adam's lunches for work.  This past Monday morning, I was trying to decide what to fix for supper that night.  I checked the freezer and saw that we didn't even have any frozen veggies or fruits for me to fix.  I began praying to God.  I told Him that I understood that we were going to have to make sacrifices when cutting back on spending, and I am ok with that. But I asked Him if He would reveal to me a way to be able to afford healthy food for our family.

That afternoon, my nannie called me and told me that she was going to drop off some leftovers she had that she wouldn't be able to finish by herself.  Included in the leftovers was a big helping of fresh cherries.  I saved those to serve with our supper that night.  Wow, I thought.  Thank you, God!

The next day, I woke up to a text from my next door neighbor.  She told me that she had left me some okra from her garden on my front porch.  I went out on my porch to find a bucket FULL of fresh okra.  I was so thankful....and a little surprised.  I wondered if this was God answering my prayer.

That night, we had some family over to play cards (Polish Uno, of course).  My mom brought us some fresh peaches and a ton of sliced watermelon.  I really couldn't believe it.  I started thinking back to my prayer just 36 hours prior.  God had answered my prayer.  He used His people to provide for my family's needs.  Looking back, my next door neighbor also gave us a sack of tomatoes from her garden just last week.

My nannie, neighbor, and mom did not know that I had prayed that prayer.  I actually didn't even tell my husband that I had prayed that prayer.  That's what makes everything so amazing.  Our family and neighbor didn't even know that we had a need for some fresh food.  But God used them in our life in a big way, without them even knowing.

This was such a huge reinforcement to my faith in how God provides.  He provided for us in such a practical way, just when we needed it.  I still can't believe it.  I know that He is a loving God and that He is our provider, but I am humbled that He would answer me in such a real way.  I am so, so thankful.  God is FOR REAL, and HE LOVES US!  What an incredible God we serve!    

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

To the mothers...

This is written for the mothers of unborn babies who may stumble across my blog.  It is written for those mothers who may be considering ending the life of their sweet baby. I was prompted to write this because I read this article today.  It was posted on facebook by a friend.   

I was sobbing as I read this article.  I couldn't believe what I was reading.  I would give anything to talk to those mothers. This is for them....

I wish I could talk to you in person.  I wish I could give you a hug and invite you into my home.  I wish I could fix you a cup of hot chocolate, and let you cry, vent, whatever you needed to do.  I wish we could sit and talk for hours.  I wish I could be there for you.  But since I only have this keyboard and a brief nap time to work with, here is what I want to say to you.  

Your baby is a beautiful, wonderful, matter how or during what season of life it got here.  Your baby is here on this earth for a purpose.  It was not an accident.  God created that beautiful baby inside of you for His glory.  God allowed this baby to be conceived.  It is not your right to take this life. This baby is not part of your body, it is its own person.  The baby growing inside of you is a human being, and has been since conception.  At days old, he has a heart that beats, separately from yours.  He has a nervous system, and soon he will be able to hear your voice if he can't already.  Your baby already loves you and is comforted by you.  He listens to you intently, studying the way you talk, the way you sing, and the way you move.  He longs to be held by you.  

I am the mother of a 3 and 1/2 month old baby boy.  I can't even put into words the love I have for my son, August.  I wish you could just feel for a moment what it feels like for your baby to be here.  That brief moment would change your whole world.  I promise you that you will feel differently about your baby once he is here.  When I was pregnant with August, I thought I loved him, because he was mine, but I didn't know him.  I didn't know he would look like a combination of my husband and my dad, and that he would smile like my grandfather; I didn't know that he would always want to be swaddled when sleeping, that he would be obsessed with his pippy (pacifier), or that he would enjoy having books read to him.  I didn't know that just walking outside with him would stop all of his tears, or that one day I wouldn't care that he used to wake me up at night.  I didn't know that he would outgrow his clothes so quickly, or that he would teethe so early.  I didn't know that my touch would put him to sleep, or that he would wake up in the mornings with a smile on his face.  I didn't know that I would scroll through pictures of him on my phone after he had gone to bed, just because I missed him. I didn't know.   

Oh, and birth!  I didn't know how I would feel about birth.  There is absolutely nothing like birth, no matter by induction, c-section, natural, however it happens.  There is nothing like it.  It is scary, yes, but there is a prize at the end of it, and nothing will overshadow that prize.  The moment your baby comes into the world, and you hear his cry, it is just amazing.  At that moment, you would do anything for him.  Anything.  Don't lose that moment.  I long for every woman to feel that moment.  That moment will be one of the best moments, if not the best moment, of your life.  No matter what.  It gives you a high that cannot be matched, and God made it that way for a reason.  Don't lose that.

I understand that you may be considering abortion because you are no longer with the father, or maybe you are, but it was just an "accident."  Your baby was not an accident.  You made a choice to have sex.  You did.  That's when you chose to have this baby.  While you may regret that decision now, killing your baby will not make that decision go away.  It won't fix your life, make things less complicated, or keep anyone from knowing.  You need to pray that God will change your heart toward this baby.  God is healer.  God is forgiveness.  He is the Almighty One.  This baby needs you.  Maybe the answer for you is adoption, I don't know. Maybe that's not the answer.  Maybe the answer is for you to love and care for your baby.  Maybe you need to pray that God will meet your financial needs or whatever the case may be so that you can raise your baby.  Pray that God will reveal to you what you should do.  Cry out to Him during this time.  He is The Almighty.  He will answer you.   

I also understand that you may be considering abortion because you were raped.  I cannot begin to imagine and do not pretend to understand the pain and hurt you are feeling right now.  I cannot fathom that.  Not only did you have to endure that, but you now carry that person's child.  I cannot imagine.  However, this baby is not that man.  This baby does not know that man.  This baby is separate from that man.  Don't hold this baby accountable for what he did.  Killing the baby will not make the pain of what happened go away.  It will not fix it or make it as if it never happened.  It will only add to your pain.  Just like that man will be held accountable one day for what he did, you will be held accountable for killing your baby.  If you can't raise this baby, somebody can.  And you would not be looked down on for that.  Someone out there wants to love your baby.  If you can't give your baby the love he needs, let someone else love him.  You want that for your child.  I know that if something happens to me, I want someone to love my baby.  And someone will.  Someone will love your baby.  Don't take that love away from him.  

I wish I could sit and type and encourage you as long as my fingers would go, but I have my own baby to take care of.  I beg you, do not go through with this abortion.  It is murder.  You will be held accountable for it.  Please spare your sweet, sweet baby.  Let someone love him if you don't think you can.  I would gladly take your baby for you.  Gladly.  If I could leave you with anything, it would be these verses.  Please consider them.  God be with you.

     Yahweh is close to all who call on Him—to all who call on Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him: He will hear their cry and save them (Psalm 145:18-19).

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1)

Without faith, it is impossible to please God. For he who comes to God must believe He exists, and rewards those who diligently seek Him. (Hebrews 11:6)

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

Come to Me, all you who are weary and weighed down with heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me; for I am gentle and humble in spirit. Indeed, you will surely find rest in Me! My yoke is easy, and My burden is light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

Therefore, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creation. Old things have passed away; look, new things have come! (2 Corinthians 5:17)

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him, to enable them to fulfill the purpose for which they are called. (Romans 8:28)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

August is 3 months old!

August is 3 months old, and I have barely blogged at all since he has been born.  I'm already looking back, wishing I had written more during the past 3 months.  Time is flying by, and I wish it would slow down.  I already miss "newborn August," but I am also enjoying the more smiley, interactive August.  I often look back and wonder where the days have gone.  The hours in the day pass by quickly, and the weeks pass even more quickly.  Here are some random facts about August.

1. August loves diaper changes.  He does.  He gets the biggest smile every single time you lay him on the changing pad.  I always know that if he is upset, that will cheer him up.

2. August sleeps 9-10 hours a night.  I am spoiled, I know.  He goes to bed around 8 (give or take depending on what we have going on), and wakes up around 7.  You would think I would be getting a ton of sleep.  I was when he first started sleeping through the night, but now I soak up the evening hours to myself and to time with Adam, so I actually get in the bed pretty late.  I need to work on that, but mommy time is nice....even if I am spending it catching up on the laundry/cleaning up the supper dishes.

3. I rarely pump during the night.  That's TMI for some of you who aren't mommies, I know.  I'm sure it's terrible that I go that long without nursing/pumping.  I'm probably going to get mastitis or something, but once I'm in the bed, I'm out.  I don't wake up unless August does.  You nursing mommies out there, what do you/did you do?  Sleep or pump? 

4. We haven't swaddled August the past few nights.  He started waking up during the night 3-4 times/night for like 2 nights.  When I would go in to check on him, he had broken free from his Swaddle Me.  
I found him like this, out of his Swaddle Me....and he did a 180!  His head is where his feet were when I put him to bed.  And yes, I see how close that blanket is to being over his head.  Trust me, it scared me.  No more blankets for August. :)
This is completely unlike him since he has slept through the night since he was 7 weeks old.  I took him to the doctor because I thought he might have an ear infection.  No ear infection, but the doctor (well, the nurse practitioner that was there) said that he was probably too big for the Swaddle Me if he is able to get out of it.  This was sad for me because I just ordered the size large a few weeks ago, and he is already too big for it.  He has done surprisingly well without it.  I hear him moving a lot more on the monitor at night, but so far so good.
First night out of the Swaddle Me!  I put him in a sleep sack to help with the transition.  :)

5. August hasn't turned over to his belly yet (or from belly to back either).  Sometimes I wonder what's taking him so long, but I am trying not to rush him.  After all, once he starts turning over/becoming mobile, I will have a lot more to worry about.

6. August is super long.  At his 2 month doctor's appointment, he was in the 98th percentile for height.  He was 25 inches at 2 months.  No telling how long he is now. He weighs 12 pounds 11 ounces as of Monday.

7. August loves his pippy (pacifier) and Mr. Crinkles.  Mr. Crinkles is a crinkly elephant toy.  

8. August loves books.  He will sit and look at the pictures while you read.  

9.  August loves tv way more than I would like to admit.  He will turn his head and body into all sorts of contortions just so he can see the screen.  

10.  I still have trouble taking August in public by myself.  He gets some kind of weird anxiety when he doesn't know where he is or if a bunch of people are around him.  He wants me to hold him the whole time which can make things difficult.  At the grocery store, he doesn't want to be in the Moby wrap, and he doesn't want to be in his car seat in the stroller.  I have to be carrying him.  

11.  August takes 2 naps a day.  The first one is between 9 and 10 a.m., and he sleeps for about 2 to 2 1/2 hours.  The second nap is around 2 p.m., and he fights me on that one.  He isn't a fan of the afternoon nap, so that nap is shorter.  

I have a ton I could write about, but it's already 12:00 a.m., and I need to get some sleep.  I have been way too tired in the morning, and I can't even blame August.  I will leave you with some adorable pictures that my good friend Samantha took of August when he was 12 weeks old (he is now 14 weeks)!

Images by Freepik