Friday, October 28, 2011

A New Mom's Confession

As I contemplate another sleepless night and another day of a sick, crying, whining baby, I come to to realize something...having a baby and taking care of a baby is the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life. Although I have not lived all that long, there is some merit in the fact that this task of motherhood has become my greatest challenge.

Lately, my only solace has been seeing Jane act as though she knows that I love her and have compassion for her not feeling well and a husband who will take turns caring for Jane. Those two things keep my eyelids open and get one foot to follow the other. I am making it sound very hard to raise a child...because it is. However natural it is for me to love and cherish my daughter, it is not natural for me to know how to be selfless 24/7. I had a lot of young single adult years and two full years with my husband before Jane came, and I was accustomed to coming and going as I pleased and for the most part doing the things that I wanted to, when I wanted to. I remember my mom telling me that I had plenty of time to have a family as I was crying and complaining about not being married and later about not being able to get pregnant. Now her words pierce me and for one small selfish moment, I wish I had had a little more time before my angel arrived. There are a few things I miss about being baby-less: getting from point A to point B without packing a diaper bag, putting extra clothing on a baby, putting the baby in the car seat, hearing crying from the backseat, and feeling rushed; sleeping from evening to morning; having a clean house all of the time; getting all my lesson planning and school work done before noon; wearing my small, cute clothes; and spending quality,uninterrupted time with my husband. I am not sure if it is good to dwell on such a list, but I am not ashamed of my new mom status and all the growing pains that accompany this place in life.

The contradictory feelings of having a child baffles me. You are completely in love with this gift from God, with moments of pure joy, but you are frustrated and emotionally, physically and financially drained because of the same gift. There are moments when I want to throw in the towel and call a grandma to take her until I am ready for her again. (As if grandmas have not already done enough mothering =).

All I have to say is...I am not going to give up, and I imagine that if this is the hardest thing that I have ever done, it is also the most rewarding thing I will ever do in my life.

A young, tired, blessed, too honest mother singing off.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Fall Kickoff 2011

Lucas looking to see where his pumpkin nose ended up.

Friend and neighbor, Emily, holding the babies.

Bobbing for apples

They had to get a little wet to get to the apples. =)

Tired, but glad to finally have the apple.

Yummy chili, cornbread and desserts.

There was zombie brains, skin, teeth and other body parts for the kids to touch.

Picking our pumpkins

Somebody's mobile!

Give me the camera Mom.
What fun we had eating, playing pin the nose on the pumpkin, bobbing for apples, touching body parts of zombies, and watching Hocus Pocus.

I had set up a spooky place in the garage where I set up different types of food that felt like body parts and other various things that you would not want to touch. I told the boys what I was going to do and even put a Keep Out sign on the garage door. They were pretty jazzed about it and the neighbor down the street actually told the boys earlier that she had seen Cody and I bringing in a zombie body late at night. That fueled the fire, and I had three kids that were convinced I had prepared real zombie body parts! I wasn't convinced that they believed us until I took the first boy blindfolded into the garage and turned on the spooky music. He would not touch anything! Eventually he was close to tears and wanted to go in the house even though he had still not touched anything. I tried with the older boys, but to no avail...I had made it too scary! haaa. They all came in together and I let them do it without the blindfold. I had so much fun watching their faces.

The bobbing for apples ended up being harder than anyone anticipated, but eventually they just about took the dunk and got their prize apple. =)

We also went to pick out our pumpkins for Halloween. The pumpkin lot was near our house and it had a beautiful barn and a sunset behind for a perfect backdrop. Now, what to dress Jane up as...

We predict Jane will be walking around by Christmas. We will see.

Hope everyone is having a lovely Fall and looking forward to the holiday season as much as I am!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

On the Last Day of Sun

Caleb Thornton (my nephew)

Beka Thornton (niece)

Joshua Thornton (nephew)


They love their mommy.

Mother and Baby

Mark, Holly and Caleb Thronton

Jane is playing in the garage with Cody and Lucas (our neighbor's son). She is happy!

Jane with Grandma and Grandpa Panganiban

Jane with Uncle English major at BYU!

Summer Session 2011...What a great group of people!

Enjoying what we thought would be the last day of sun at the sand dunes near Rexburg, ID.


We picked apples and dehydrated them! Yum. I wish they lasted longer in our house.

Proud owner of an apple peeler/slicer...

Nope...doesn't taste good.

My sweets.

I love that baby!

One of Cody's shots I liked.

We love wildflowers.

Tired after a good day. the conglomeration of pictures that I have posted you may notice there is no theme. These pictures cover some time so I will be highlighting.
In between Summer Session and Fall semester at BYU-Idaho I had ten days and after a lot of indecision Cody and I spontaneously decided to go to Utah. We visited with family in Provo area and I then hitched a ride with Cody's wonderful parents. I met my mom in Cedar City and finally got home. Everyone was super busy with school and work, but I was able to squeeze some attention out of them. I was able to finally hold my sister Holly's baby, Caleb, for the first time since he was born. I also was able to take some photos of their beautiful and fun family. Some other fun things I was able to do was watch The Help with Holly. We had both read it and wanted to see it. I enjoyed the novel immensely and found it easy to read. I was most impressed with voices of the characters in the book. Trina, my sister-in-law came from Alamo, NV to watch Grease at Tuachan with me. It was a fun night. The trip back to Rexburg was grueling! My mom and Jamie called me out...
"Jane is just about done being in the car guys," I say with frustration and a tinge of anger. 
"Is it Jane that is just about done or you?" Jamie says as my mom laughs.

Okay, so they were right. I was sick of being in the car and the thought of repeating that journey makes me shudder. It was fun to see Jamie and visit with him for what seems like a second. He has recently changed his major to English at BYU and I am a big fan of the change. Some may thing going from Bio chemistry to English is a downgrade, but it certainly is not--upgrade definitely. I am not biased either. =)

Since my trip home I have enjoyed a semester of teaching that does not involve late, stressful nights trying to finish a paper or book for my masters degree. Teaching is my delight. Every time a semester begins I fall in love with a new set of students. They are excellent people and as they read their first paper out loud in class, I am reminded why I like to teach and even read essays--the good, the bad and the ugly. Each semester I hone my style, try new techniques and essentially find ways to teach the same thing better. I enjoyed my photography class. I learned a lot about how to use my new camera. Now, I will be taking the second half that will teach me how to use Photoshop.

Today I was able to hear the young adult author Gary Schmidt speak about writing. He shared that we should write to serve and then to add beauty, wisdom and understanding to the world. Gary writes to answer a question that fascinates him. How silly that it never dawned on me that writing is a way of answering the questions we have about life. Also, the poet laureate from Oregon came to speak and had everyone write a line of poetry inspired by our day and then encouraged everyone to spread the gift of poetry. and write poetry! Here is what I wrote.

Frosted curls crown her tiny head.
Big, smiling blue eyes peer over the pink blanket
just to check I am still there.

Cody is busy with school, taking care of Jane and finishing up work on the university farm. He is reading a great book right now that is hard for him to put down...Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting Out of the Box. He especially loves his manufacturing processes class right now. No surprise there. His foot has been hurting him lately, and I am hoping that he will not have to deal with pain in his foot for life now.

Jane can pull herself up onto pretty much anything...moving or not. She can't stand seeing older kids walking around while she has to crawl everywhere. She crawls fast, but not fast enough to keep up with the neighbor kids. (We love our neighbors, by the way) She is emphatic about being as independent as humanly possible. If you hold her by the waist she will grab your hands and move them outwards in order to still stand with support, but have some space. She smiles incessantly, chuckles to herself when she plays with certain toys, and loves to be outside. She is constantly complimented for her curly hair and long eye lashes. I love the way babies help you connect to people in general. I have struck up conversations with strangers more than I ever have because Jane can be the common topic until you find another. I wish I could say that Jane gets her curls and long eye lashes from me, but I am just glad I haven't been asked if she is adopted.

So, on Saturday we thought it would be the last day of sun, thus the title of this post. Thankfully it wasn't, but we will be cutting it close. It got crazy cold a few days ago, and I began to dread the long winter ahead. I thought of my sister Joanie. She could not stand the winters here, and she would have died if winter had started in early October and went until April. Anyways, to celebrate the sun we traveled to the sand dunes just outside of town and out to some open spaces. To make a good day even better we cleaned out our garage and we are glad to say that the car does, in fact, still fit in the garage. I still don't understand how quickly space is filled when you have it. I love the feeling of getting rid of what is not needed to make space for what is.

This weekend we are looking forward to our annual Fall Kickoff. There are few things that bring me such pleasure as fall leaves, Halloween candy, pumpkin pie, cinnamon candles, Hocus Pocus, chili, corn bread and good friends!

Have a good day!
© Lucy Jo. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.