ways I am preparing for our new baby.

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I have about 6-7 weeks (or 44ish days)  before I give birth to our third son. Being the planner that I am I always have a constant running list of things I need to do before and after this new guy arrives. As much as I try to sit and just enjoy these last few weeks with just two boys it is not me to just push my self-made list aside. Every women is different but I wanted to share with all of you the ways I am preparing for our new baby. My hope is that by tackling some of these things will help alleviate any stress or problems in the future. I have learned how quickly life can change when you add new things onto your plate so each day I am trying to do little tasks to help accomplish all of these goals. 

Ways I am Preparing for our New Baby

  • Clean out all the drawers in all of our bedrooms of clothes we do not wear or need. 
  • Go through all of the boys toy bins to throw out broken toys, donate toys we do not use, and organize all of the tiny pieces of legos and parts we have.
  • Clean out our SUV of the loads of goldfish, sippy cups, and tissues that have accumulated over the year. 
  • Set up a house cleaner to come clean for two months after baby is born. I am thinking I will have her come every 2 weeks to do a big clean and then my mom and I will keep up with the everyday stuff.
  • Organize a drawer of postpartum care for myself. I am putting together a drawer of all of my nursing friendly tanks, comfy pants, and then a separate drawer full of bathroom needs (witch hazel, pads, spray, cream, etc.).
  • Make a list of our favorite take-out and restaurants that I can use Uber Eats for. Our neighborhood sadly does not get delivery for Amazon Fresh or any grocery delivery but I know Uber Eats will come here so on the days where lunch is far from my mind or I can't find anything for dinner I can easily give Nick a name of a place we like to eat and he can order food for us.
  • Make a drawer in the kitchen and in the fridge where I can prepare the boys easily accessible snacks and breakfasts choices.
  • Write up the boys schedule and contact a few friends for when I go into labor. My mom will watch Calvin and Max when I am giving birth and then will come to the hospital right after baby is born so I want to make sure that there is no confusion on what the boys need while I am away. I am also getting our spare car seats ready in case they need to go somewhere with my mom or a friend (think insurance info, doctors numbers, sleep routine, foods they like, etc.).
  • Pack hospital bags for Nick and myself. This is actually the tasks I am most excited about and will probably wait until I am 36 weeks to do. I have always loved getting everything ready for our hospital stay just because it puts everything into perspective for me.

This list might seem long but it honestly helps me so much to have a plan of action and it makes the time I have left to wait not seem so long. I know that it will take a lot of practice for me to learn to let some things go and to just relax once the baby comes but knowing I completed this list will help give me some peace of mind. I would love to hear what you do to prepare for your new baby.

PC: Courtney White 

PC: Courtney White 

28 years of life events.

Today is my 28th birthday! Last year I wrote 27 facts about myself HERE and this year I thought it could be cool to share a short timeline of my life thus far. I always love getting to know the face behind a blog so I thought I would do something similar. 

The hardest part about getting old  is that I still feel like a kid on the inside. I know I have grown a lot over the years but a lot of my habits, emotions, and views on life are the same and for that reason I still feel like I am 6 years old at times. 

Today I am getting a massage with my sister Michelle and then will be eating my traditional birthday meal of corned beef, mashed potatoes, and candied carrots. For dessert we will have rice crispy treats and a big bowl of pomegranate (yes, I eat this almost every year).  I wanted to try something new this year though and would love your help in making this a new tradition. Would you consider doing a random act of kindness in my honor? It could be something simple like bringing your neighbors trash cans in or bringing coffee to your child's teacher at school or even something big like surprsing your friend or spouse with a fun dinner. But I would love to hear what RAOK you did for someone in the comments below and then I hope to write them all up and share them back on here next week. 

I think this will be a fun tradition to start with my kids and will also help put into perspective that life isnt always all about us and our little bubbles. There is always going to be more ways to serve and love on those around us. Thanks so much in joining me on my birthday in this small way.

Gina's Timeline

1989- Born at Yale New Haven Hospital in New Haven, Connecticut weighing in over 9 lbs

1990- Became a big sister

1992- Became a big sister again

1995- Parents got divorced

2004- Moved across country to San Diego, CA

2004- Started high school

2006- Learned to drive

2007- Graduated high school 

2007- Attended college at San Diego State University

2008- Joined Alpha Delta Chi sorority

2009- Met Nick at Chick-fil-A 

2010- Married Nick at Westminster Seminary California

2011- Graduated from SDSU. Go Aztecs!!!

2012- Gave birth to my first son, Calvin Nicholas and also became a stay-at-home mom

2014- Gave birth to my second son, Maddox James

2015- Became a Pastor's wife when Nick was ordained in the PCA (Presbyterian Church of America)

2016- Pregnant with our 3rd son

2017+ ... (Hoping my best friend gives birth to her precious son today)

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It's all about the little things. 

It's all about the little things. 

Is it time to sing "happy birthday" yet? 

Is it time to sing "happy birthday" yet? 

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my life isn't over because I'm a stay-at-home mom.

We have all heard the stereotypical remarks that people put on stay-at-home moms:

"What do you do all day at home?"

"So your wife really doesn't work?"

"It must be awful being stuck inside everyday!"

"When are you going back to real life?"

The list goes on.

I have been a SAHM now for a little over 4 years and in that time my outlook on this season of my life has changed. If you were to talk to me when my first son was born about how I liked being at home you would have seen tears, fear, and regret. I hated my new at home "job" and was desperately looking for a way out. Thankfully, after much help and communication I can now say I love being a SAHM. I am in a position where I get to (with some boundaries) do whatever I want each day. I wake up and am able to seize each day as a new opportunity to grow myself as a person and to watch my kids grow. Some days are not all that glamorous and most days are filled with fun and mundane tasks but the beauty is there is so much more than meets the eye with a stay-at-home mom.

This week I finished a book I highly recommend, "Liturgy of the Ordinary" by Tish Harrison Warren. She does a phenomenal job of connecting the mundane and ordinary routines of life with the life we have in our church. As I was reading her book it reminded me specifically of motherhood and those of us who stay at home with our children. (whether that be by choice or necessity). 

Here are some notable quotes for you to reflect on whether or not you work in or out of the home:

These tiny moments of beauty in our days train us in the habits of adoration and discernment. And the pleasure and sensuousness of our gathered worship teach us to look for and receive these small moments in our days. Together, they train us int he art of noticing and reveling in God’s goodness and artistry.
— p 139
We are shaped every day, whether we know it or not, by practices-rituals and liturgies that make us who we are.
— p 29
I’m living this life, the life right in front of me. This one where marriages struggle. This one where we aren’t living as we thoguht we might or as we hoped we would. This one where we are weary, where we want to make a difference but aren’t sure where to start, where we have to get dinner on the table or the kid’s teeth brushes, where we have back pain and boring weeks, where our lives look small, where we doubt...
— p 23
But in facing the reality of death we learn how to live rightly. We learn how to live in the light of our limits and the brevity of our lives. And we learn to live in the hope of the resurrection.
— pg 147
I can get caught up in big ideas of justice and truth and neglect the small opportunities around me to extend kindness, forgiveness, and grace.
— p 77

Today I dropped my oldest off at preschool, went to my OB with my youngest, did dishes, laundry, picked up my son from school, made lunch and did dishes once again. All mundane ordinary tasks. I often repeat those remarks I mentioned earlier to myself asking "is this really all I do all day?" What I can often forget is that those ordinary everyday moments with my kids, with my neighbors, and with God are all part of a picture much larger and grander than myself. I am not just a stay-at-home mom. I am living the life God has given me and with that will come days of doubt and days of rejoicing. The best thing to do is to commit each day to God, asking him to use it for my good and his glory. 

If you find yourself going through the motions or thinking your life doesn't add up because you don't have a business card or career that pays you money (because let's face it, being a mom is more than a full-time gig), know that you are worth so much more than your own doubts or the doubts of others. From one SAHM mom to another, our work is important and valued.

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