Tasty Treats
Don’t Even

Link Love…and a Question

Amazingly, I’ve been able to keep up my reading spurt this year. I figure I only have two more months until I take a probable hiatus. The only downfall, if it can really be considered one, is that the novels I’ve delved into are so good they keep me up too late at night. The latest one I read is likely familiar to most of you with its raving reviews and the upcoming movie release this summer. It’s called The Help. I particularly love the history woven throughout, and who wouldn’t agree that the Civil Rights Movement is one of the top most significant historical events/changes during the 20th century? It’s a humorous, thoughtful, and insightful piece of literature.

There is a new Compassion Bloggers team headed to the Philippines next week. If you read anything on the Internet next week, read some of their posts. You can follow along with them here. You might be familiar with some of the team members:  Tsh Oxenreider at The Simple Mom or Emily Freeman at Chatting at the Sky.

I still think it would be amazing to meet our two Compassion girls who live in Bangladesh. My friend, Tracy, has family in the Philippines and visited there with her hubby and two kiddos a couple of months ago. While there, she got to meet her Compassion child! What an opportunity in which to take advantage, a real treasure!

We have no idea what lies ahead with Brennan’s or Skittles’ education in the future, and I am certainly not one that sees herself made for homeschooling, but I appreciated reading Ann Voskamp’s post this morning. No matter what is in store for our kiddos, the heart and purpose behind what we ultimately desire their education to look like and result in was articulated very well: “It means that we pursue not a cultural definition of success but of true greatness for our kids: ‘having an unquenchable passion for God that manifests itself in an unwavering love and concern for others’ (Ted Kimmel, Raising Kids for True Greatness).”

In the winter, I participated in the Bloom Book Club through {in}courage when they read One Thousand Gifts. Last Sunday, they announced the new book selection starting up on June 5th: Kelly Minter’s The Fitting Room. I’ve been looking forward to starting up again with this online community, and you might want to also. Here are all the details you need.

And now a question for y’all. One of Brennan’s favorite books in the past couple of months has been The Berenstain Bears’ New Baby. He’s intrigued not just by the baby but also the new big boy bed that Brother Bear switches to from his little bed, something Brennan himself has done in the last couple of months. It’s a book we’re using as a resource to talk about his baby sister coming soon to help with the transition. What are other things you did in your families that were helpful and fun to aid in the adjustment period?

If any of you Central Texans are looking for a place to escape for a weekend, Matt and I HIGHLY recommend Rose-Hill Manor outside of FrederiIMG_2148cksburg! We went there last weekend for a brief ‘babymoon’ while Brennan was love-spoiled by his Mees in San Antonio. Y’all, the scenery was breathtakingly peaceful and the food was GOURMET! Our friend, Courtney, recommended the place, and we would go back there in a heartbeat.

Oh, and how could I forget!? There are a few things recently that have triggered deep Texas pride in me. First, the rodeo. Second, strawberry picking underneath the expansive clear-blue sky. I still want to blog about both of those. Third, this music video/commercial that came out for the Superbowl sponsored by the best grocery store around, H.E.B. It won’t be new to many of you Texans, but if you want to know why I love Texas--why all Texans love Texas--this will give you a glimpse. And you’ll understand why I wanted to breed a family of Texans <grin>. That was just to get under Matt’s skin, but oh, there’s so much to love about Texas, that’s why Texas is home to me!

Simply trusting,



Awesome Babymoon! And I just read an interview with the author of The Help. She was rejected by 60 agents and rewrote the book countless times over 3 1/2 years of being turned down. Just a bit of trivia for you. Thank you for the sweetest thank you note ever! I think of you every day and can't wait to meet Skittles.

Ummm...we did nothing to prepare Aaron for Abby, really. I didn't even get him one of those Big Brother books. I'm a pretty lousy mom. I did take a week off from EVERYTHING right before she was born and that was Mama/Aaron time every day. I mean, we talked about Abby a lot, but we didn't do anything more official than that and he adjusted fine. I'm sure that doesn't help you, though. I just went with lots of prayer and lots and lots of love.

We got Guy a little baby and stroller. Guy practiced holding him nicely, giving him kisses and speaking sweetly to him. He still loves his baby, but I can't say whether or not it actually helped him transition. What's nice is that there are still two parents for two kids, so the ratio is one-on-one. I'm sure Matt and Brennan will bond even more once she comes.

We taught Luke Ellie's name so he could start practicing (we told everyone else it was Lemon). We talked about him meeting his new sister, we didn't associate the big boy bed with her, as we didn't want him to resent her with leaving the crib. When we were taking him to our friend's house on the way to the hospital, we told him "mommy's tummy hurts, but that means you get to meet Ellie tomorrow!" He prayed for me because my tummy hurt. How cute is that?
We also are very careful to not give reasons for not being able to do things due to the baby. That's been big for us. We don't want him to resent her, just love her. So when I need to feed her, I let him do something special in another room all by himself. Or if we can't go somewhere right now because Ellie is sleeping, I never tell him that's the reason why. It's been huge. Oh, and if I'm holding Ellie, I am sure to put her down for a while and hold him, too. He has really seemed to appreciate that. Hope that makes sense.

You are HARDLY a lousy mother...you're so silly for saying that! I really like the idea of taking a week off everything to focus on Brennan; that's a great idea. And sister, I needed to hear about the lots of love and prayer. Yes, that did my heart good and I thank you!

Praise God for the one-to-one ratio! I like the baby and stroller idea, Corrie. Good practice for being gentle. Thank you for the ideas!

Thanks for the comment and shared thoughts, Kim! It totally made sense. Once Matt hits his deadline to think of names with me :) , I think we're going to do the same thing you all did with Ellie's name for Luke. And I agree that being watchful about expressing reasons for not being able to do things is significant.

I would recommend pulling out some of the baby "gear" before she arrives and working on being gentle with those things. Especially if you have a swing! Nathan may or may not have pushed Emie out of the swing the first day home from the hospital ;) I put together bins of table activities or quieter activities so that it was easy to pull something interesting out when I had to attend to Emie. Things like coloring, play doh with cookie cutters, a placemat with roads and little cars to drive on, sorting activities, etc. I did pack away a few fun new toys/activities and if we had a particularly stressful day, I could pull out that new thing and tell Nathan that it was a gift from Emie.

I loved reading your recent post. It came at the perfect time. Homeschooling has been on my heart for the past 6 months; I'm full of questions. So thank you for sharing Ann's blog with us. Also, I've been looking high and low for a good book to enjoy at night. My last book was a dud. I absolutely love The Help. It was my favorite read this past year. It made me laugh out loud and cry; it had a great mix of emotions. Thank you for sharing the {in}courage blog. I just bought my copy of The Fitting Room and look forward to reading it with you. Lastly, when we were preparing Isabella for Victoria's arrival, she was only 11 months old, but we did let her play with her Baby and all the baby gear: swing, play mat, bumbo, bouncer,etc.. And when Victoria was born, I always asked for Isabella's help in caring for her.

Hi Meg,
One thing we did with Chloe is to keep her crib up in her room while she transitioned to her big girl bed and Meredith was in the Pack 'n Play. This seemed to help things go a little more smoothly, as sometimes Chloe needed the security of her crib at night and Meredith didn't mind the Pack 'n Play. Later, we used the crib to keep her in bed if she kept popping out to say goodnight, need a drink of water, etc. That seemed to help and now she doesn't pop out of bed much at night.

Another thing...have you guys thought of cloth-diapering? I just started with Meredith, my second, and highly recommend it to all the soon-to-be mamas I know. I'm going to recommend a link to a particular store that I've ordered from and love (and it's also having a giveaway too!) I hope it's helpful. Here's the link for the trial program they run...http://www.jilliansdrawers.com/customerservice/returnsandcancellations

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