Posts Tagged ‘Little C’

More or Less

When I became pregnant, I knew motherhood would change me – more or less.

Now that I’ve been a mom for two years, I’ve realized just how much that was true.

I know more about the characters and general storylines of “Sofia the First” and “Doc McStuffins.”

I can survive on less sleep.

We own more pairs of sparkly shoes and choosing which pair to wear on any given day is serious business.

While I still like to look my best, I’ve modified my routine to spend less time getting ready and more time enjoying morning snuggles.

I care less about having an immaculate house and more about whether Little C’s enjoying her books and toys and not being afraid to make a little mess once in awhile. (But let’s be honest, I never cared too much about having a perfectly clean house.)

I think more about spending quality time together, and wonder if the quanitity is enough, too.

Sitting down to a hot meal happens less, after cutting up chicken nuggets and picking up dropped forks and refilling empty milk glasses.

I worry more about the things that matter and less about the things that don’t.

I’ve listened to more renditions of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” and “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” and the silly made-up songs she invents in the car.

I have more patience…except for the days I have less.

I pray more – for her, for me, for the world in which she’ll live and grow and, hopefully, make a better place.

I appreciate my own parents more. Much, much more.

I’ve fallen more in love watching Big C as a daddy and sharing this journey of parenthood with him.

I spend less money on myself, but I have found many more riches than I ever imagined.

My days are filled with more laughter, more peace, more joy, and more love than I thought possible.

So, has motherhood changed me? More or less.Two Days Old

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A Needed Break!

I’ve been quiet on here since the end of November – I needed a little break after completing the challenge! Thanks to everyone who read along and (hopefully) enjoyed what I had to say.

In the eight days of December, it’s been busy around here. Of course the Thanksgiving holiday meant a little travel and delicious food, and I also found time to put up most of my Christmas décor that weekend, since I had Friday off work as well. I did just a bit of Black Friday shopping, only going to two stores, but I was able to find almost everything I set out for at really good prices!

Last week I had some work travel on Monday, then we took Little C to her first farm show on Tuesday. She seemed to really enjoy looking at the equipment and won a few hearts by giving out high fives to most of the people we visited with!

She loved sitting in this tractor! Pretty sure Pa-Pa was about to pull out his checkbook so she could take it home (just kidding!)

She loved sitting in this tractor! Pretty sure Pa-Pa was about to pull out his checkbook so she could take it home (just kidding!)

Wednesday I was in a workshop related to my job all day, and Thursday morning I had the opportunity to work with a colleague to present information about agricultural careers to eighth grade students at a local school. They will be choosing their freshman year courses in January, and the high school ag instructor set up a “speed dating” session with eight different facets of agriculture for the students to rotate among. It’s a great idea, and it opens the eyes of a mostly urban student population to the variety of opportunities in the ag industry. And it reminds me that I’m not cut out to be a teacher – I’m exhausted after one morning! I do enjoy being asked to help out, though, and hope to be contacted again next year.

Then on Friday we traveled to the Wisconsin Dells for the Wisconsin Farm Bureau annual meeting. My company is a sponsor of the event and I went as a company representative and also served as a judge for one of the Young Farmer and Agriculturist competitions. It was the second time I’ve been to that meeting and once again, it did not disappoint. Great sessions, excellent competitors, and wonderful networking opportunities made it a valuable weekend.

However, Little C had another idea. On Saturday morning, she developed her first stomach bug and spent the rest of the day sick. I was so grateful that Big C, my parents, and brother were also there, because I had a judging commitment that afternoon I couldn’t easily change. She wasn’t able to keep anything down all day, and we ended up taking her to urgent care to make sure she wasn’t becoming dehydrated. Even sick, she still charmed all the nurses and both doctors who checked her over! After an anti-nausea pill and a cup of pedialyte, three hours later we headed back to the hotel.

Took this picture to check to see if she was asleep so I wouldn't have to move her. Yes, that's her swimsuit cover up, we were getting desperate on tops.

Took this picture to check to see if she was asleep so I wouldn’t have to move her. Yes, that’s her swimsuit cover up, we were getting desperate on tops.

Thankfully, that helped her turn the corner and by yesterday morning she was much more like herself. Being sick is never fun, and especially not when you’re away from home. But we made it, and I had the best support team I could have hoped for!

By the time we left this morning, she was ready to "ride" the elephant statue in the lobby!

By the time we left this morning, she was ready to “ride” the elephant statue in the lobby!

Like Big C said during the wait at urgent care, “I don’t want to be here, but since we have to be, I’m glad it’s with you.”

Amen.

Day 30: One Last Thing…

Well, here we are. The final day of my 30 Day blog challenge, and the day I write about the very most important thing I want Little C to know.

If I do nothing, nothing else as her mother, I want her to know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I loved her.

From the moment the little line appeared on the EPT, I loved her.

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The day we saw her little heartbeat flickering on the sonogram screen, I loved her.

The first fluttery kick I felt, I loved her.

Sonogram

The day they laid her in my arms for the first time, I loved her.

The second night in the hospital, when she cried and cried and we were so tired and at our wits’ end, I loved her.

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The early days after we came home, while I was trying to figure out feeding schedules and napping schedules and when in the world could I take a shower, I loved her.

The first time she smiled at me, I loved her.

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The first time she said “mama,” I loved her.

When she took that first tentative step before crashing to the floor, I loved her.

The first time we went to the doctor for an ear infection, I loved her.

Watching her daintily eat her cupcake at her first birthday party, I loved her.

52 Weeks

When she says “OK,” never “yes,” I love her.

Listening to her sing her ABCs and count to ten, mostly in order, I love her.

The nights she doesn’t feel good, and we have to sleep on the couch, I love her.

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When she gets mad and tells me “no,” I love her.

When she plays with Big C, or her grandparents, or other kids, I love her.

When she tells me my necklace is pretty and counts “one, two earrings,” I love her.

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When she gets a boo boo and tells me to kiss it, I love her.

Listening to her “read” books to herself, I love her.

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The first time she throws up on me, I will love her.

When she gets ready to go to kindergarten, I will love her.

When she wants to go play at a friend’s house for the first time, I will love her.

When she has her first crush, I will love her.

When she has her first broken heart, I will love her.

When she becomes a teenager and I no longer know anything, I know I’ll still love her.

When Big C teaches her how to drive, because he will be much better at that than I am, I will love her.

When she graduates from high school, I will love her.

When we drop her off at college, I will love her.

When she gets her first job, I will love her.

When she brings home that special someone, I will love her.

When we pick out her wedding gown, I will love her.

If someday she calls to say I’m going to become a grandma, I will love her.

And if none of those things ever happens, I will still love her in a way I’ll never love anyone else, because no one else will ever be my firstborn daughter.

Little C, my little farm girl, I want you to know, more than anything else I could ever teach you, that I love you.

Love, Momma

Day 29: A Place For You

Here is the inspiration for this blog series:

Toy

I was browsing the toy aisle at Tuesday Morning a couple months ago when I stumbled upon this Little People toy. I'm a big fan of the Little People, and when I saw this particular set I knew it had to belong to Little C.

I love that it's a tractor and cow, but the thing that made me the most excited was the fact that the person included was a little girl.

I want Little C to know there will always be a place for her to come back and be part of the farm, if that’s what she wants to do.

When I told Big C I was thinking about doing this series, I asked for his input on possible topics. The very first thing he said, without a moment’s hesitation, was “I want her to know that the farm is an option.” He has told me many times that his dream is to be able to make the farm successful enough to pass it on to the next generation, and that is the goal we keep in mind while making decisions today.

Of course, we’re not going to force her to become a farmer. Farming is a lifestyle you must have a true passion for, or it doesn’t work. If she would marry someone someday who wanted to farm, we want him to know he’s welcome as well. That’s how Big C became a farmer, and we’re both grateful to my dad and grandpa for giving him that opportunity.

More than 95 percent of farms in the U.S. are family owned, and I want nothing more than to make sure we can continue to keep ours in the family by passing it along to Little C’s generation someday.

Little C, my little farm girl, I want you to know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that there will be a place for you on our family’s farm, if that’s where your passion lies.

Day 28: Hang In There!

It seems fitting to write about perseverance tonight, when I have only a few more posts to complete my 30 Day Challenge. I knew when I committed to it that I’d finish, but that decision was not made lightly. It’s important to keep your word, in big things and little things, and I want Little C to understand the importance of hanging in there.

Many things in life take work. Most people don’t wake up one morning and suddenly have the ability to play an instrument, or fix an engine, or knit a blanket. All sorts of things worth doing take time and practice to be successful, and that part isn’t always fun or glamorous.

It took awhile to decide she could manage the slide on her own, but now it's one of her favorites!

It took awhile to decide she could manage the slide on her own, but now it’s one of her favorites!

It can be frustrating and it can make you feel like giving up. And many people do, when things get hard. But the feeling of accomplishment when you achieve a goal you’ve given your all to achieve is unlike any other feeling in the world.

In today’s “everybody gets a trophy” world, we’re losing some of the life skills gained from healthy competition. Not everyone can be the best at everything, and that’s perfectly fine! Everyone has their own special set of God-given talents, and although it may take some longer to find theirs, once you do, you’re unstoppable.

Just when Momma thought she didn't know how to get up on the kitchen chairs, guess what?

Just when Momma thought she didn’t know how to get up on the kitchen chairs, guess what?

I’ll support Little C in any endeavor she wishes to pursue. However, I know she’s not going to be the best at everything. Maybe not even the best at anything. But I’ll encourage her to try her hardest and devote the time necessary to become her own personal best, and that will be enough.

When I was in seventh grade, I tried out for the basketball team. I wasn’t very good – I’m not what you’d call “coordinated.” I let myself get discouraged and quit the team a couple weeks before our first game. I went to a small rural school. I wasn’t going to get cut (nobody was) and I probably would have even got to play some, no matter how bad I truly was, but I didn’t give myself the chance. I regret not sticking it out for the season, even now 20 years later.

Once in awhile, you get stuck and need a little help. That's what Mom and Daddy are here for!

Once in awhile, you get stuck and need a little help. That’s what Mom and Daddy are here for!

I want Little C to be the kind of person who finishes what she starts. One who, if she says something will get done, gets it done right and when promised. Someone who understands that a job worth doing is a job worth doing well.

Little C, my little farm girl, not everything in life will be easy, but the things that are worth it are worth hanging in there to do to the best of your ability.

Day 27: #FirstWorldProblems

Whenever I start to complain about something, lately I’ve been trying to put it in the perspective of “first world problems.”

“I was running late to work and had to park all the way in the back of the parking lot.” First world problem. I have a job to go to that provides for my family’s basic needs and a lot of extras. I have reliable transportation to get me to and from said job. I have a comfortable bed in a safe home and an adorable daughter who needed just one more hug.

“I have a pile of clothes to iron and it’s going to take me all night.” First world problem. I have clothes. I have enough clothes that they were able to pile up without needing to wear those certain items. I have the tools in my home to clean them and press them so I can do those tasks at my leisure.

I usually stick out my tongue too, when it's time to iron.

I usually stick out my tongue too, when it’s time to iron.

“I used too much data on the wireless plan and had to type a couple blog posts on the iPad. Not having a real keyboard really slowed me down!” First World Problem (capitals intended). An iPad at my disposal. Reliable internet service in my home. Time to “waste” on something as frivolous as a blog.

“The weather was too dry/wet/cold/hot and crop yields weren’t as high as we expected.” First world problem. They’re still higher than much of the world. We have crop insurance to help make up some of the difference. Today’s hybrids are bred to perform better in extreme weather conditions – even 20 years ago, it would have been much more devastating.

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No matter what troubles, big or small, we may be facing, WE ARE BLESSED. Even when it seems as though nothing is going right, we still have food on the table, a roof over our heads, the freedom to explore different options, and the love of our God and our family. Compared to much of the world, we’re rich beyond measure.

It’s easy to get bogged down in a pessimistic, woe-is-me attitude from time to time, but that can’t be the place we stay. There is too much to be thankful for to be anything but grateful for all the blessings all around us. Taking a step back to put our problems in perspective can make all the difference.

I read a quote on Facebook recently that said “No matter how bad you think things are, remember that you’re living someone else’s fairy tale.” We’ve had our share of unpleasant things happen in our lives, and the thing that brought me through the toughest times was knowing that I couldn’t change the situation but I could change my attitude and reaction, and to remember that there is a reason for everything, which someday will be made clear.

Many people are turning their thoughts to thankfulness today, which is wonderful – but shouldn’t we do that every day?

Little C, my little farm girl, I want you to have an attitude of gratitude. Know that no matter how difficult life may be, you’re richly blessed.

Day 26: Be Good to Yourself

Today was a big day. One of the last of the firsts.

Little C had her first haircut.

Haircut

Just a little trim of the bangs that were falling down into her eyes, but her first one nonetheless. She was so good, didn’t try to wiggle or fuss. My stylist said she wished all her first haircuts were so easy. Little C even got a cute certificate with her name and a lock of hair that we can keep in her baby book. (Which, for the record, is nowhere near up to date. I have the big stuff noted on a calendar, but I haven’t found the time to transfer it into her actual book. I really hope I’m not alone here.)

This was the first in a lifetime of haircuts, some of which she’ll love and some of which she may not. She may experiment with color, curl, or accessories, or be more like her momma and need something very, very simple. No matter what she chooses to do with her hair over the years, it’s just one important part in taking care of herself.

Too often, we get wrapped up in the stuff of life and don’t always take as good of care of ourselves as we should. We don’t eat well, we don’t get enough sleep, and we put off going to the doctor. I know as a mom who works outside the home that I fall short in a lot of these major things, and even some of the more minor things like remembering to use lotion before my hands are so chapped they hurt or even painting my toenails. But especially in the last couple years, once Little C became a part of my life, it’s brought a new perspective to self-care:

It’s not selfish. It’s important to do what needs to be done so I can be here for her as long as I can be.

Seriously, how cute is this?

Seriously, how cute is this?

It started with the regular appointments during pregnancy, to make sure we both were healthy. It’s inspired me to wear a FitBit, although I don’t always squeeze in as much activity as I should. It even encouraged me to have a nagging health concern checked out, and now that I’m being treated, I wonder why I didn’t do it sooner.

It’s also important to nurture the mental aspects of health. I try to maintain a few hobbies that help me unwind and de-stress when life gets a little crazy. I’ll encourage her to find some of the same outlets as she grows up, and maybe we’ll even learn some new things together!

Especially on the farm, especially at certain times of the year, it’s absolutely critical to be the best you can be, physically and mentally. The work is too dangerous, too important to not be at the top of your game, and it all starts by making a commitment to treat yourself well.

Little C, my little farm girl, remember that taking care of yourself, mentally and physically, isn’t selfish. It’s the only way you’ll be able to accomplish all you wish to do in life.