Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Sacred Moments

Getting to know Jaxson has been heavenly.  Sometimes I look around at the baby swing and blankets, the diapers and tiny socks throughout the house and marvel that there is a baby living there.  I can't think of a time when my daughter has been more beautiful to me.  Watching her care for her little boy with such tenderness makes my heart so full and so proud.

Every morning I tiptoe into my girl's room and snatch Jaxson for morning snuggles on the couch before I head off to work.  I place my finger into his tiny hand and marvel at how small his fingers are.  I sit there all in love and wonder, as I pray over him.  If I'm lucky he'll wake up and we stare at each other.  This morning he was sound asleep and I watched him make faces - so many expressions!  I could do this all day, but I had to get myself out the door.  Reluctantly I got up to carry him back to his momma ... and he woke up.


Isn't it delicious how a baby wakes up?  Their eyes move beneath closed eyelids and then one eye opens and closes again quickly. Both eyes open and close.  Blink.  Blink.  Blink.  There's a grunt and a long stretch.  He looks around and then he sees me.  "Good morning, love," I say.  And he smiles at me.  A big wide smile!  I keep talking just to make sure it's not a fluke and he smiles again!  How can I not be in love?!  I immediately think that I must find my phone to get a picture, but I don't want to look away, so I decide not to.

My phone is loaded with pictures and videos.  I want to capture every moment.  I don't want to miss a single thing.  But really I didn't, did I?  As I drove to work I realized what a sacred moment I had with my grandson.  I don't need a picture to prove that it happened.

I wonder how many sacred moments get lost in the scramble to find my phone?  Maybe some moments aren't meant to be photographed.  Those moments when my husband grabs my hand from across the table.  When my daughter and I have a beautiful conversation.  When my son hugs me and says, "I love you, momma". Or when my nephew gives a dimpled smile as he walks over to kiss my cheek.  Life is so full of tiny sacred moments that are meant just for me.  Just for you. Some of them are too precious for Instagram.  They are not meant to be captured, but to capture you and wrap you up in the goodness of God.

So go ahead.  Take lovely pictures.  Fill up Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with your loves.  I love the ways we can share our lives with one another. But don't worry if you can't photograph some of the best moments. Because sometimes those moments are gifts just for you.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

70 things I want to teach my daughter about motherhood

1) That feeling you had the first time you saw him?  That's exactly how I felt about you.  Still do. Always will.

2) Nobody prays the way a momma does.  Bring him to Jesus every day.

3) Let him see you talk to Jesus.  Let him hear you talking about Jesus.  Let him see you walk with Jesus.

4) Your faith is the best heritage you can give him.

5) YOU are exactly the mom he needs.  Just as you are. 

6) You don't have to prove anything to anybody.  You are capable.

7) It's okay to not know everything.  Don't be afraid to ask. 

8) Cleanliness is not next to godliness.  Sometimes you have to leave the mess. 

9) Little boys get dirty.  Their play is their work and they work hard.

10) You don't have to do all the things.  Do what you can, when you can, with what you have.

11) Do one thing for yourself everyday, no matter how small

12) Keep dancing.  Your passions are important.

13) Make time for your friendships.  Sometimes this is hard work.  So worth it. 

14) Drink lots of water and eat well. 

15) Make time to take care of your health.

16)  Learn something new.  It's exhilarating.

17) Read to him every day.

18) Read one more story.  Let him splash in the tub.  Give him one more kiss goodnight.  These years go by much too quickly.

19) When you are frustrated, remember that love is kind.  Kindness wins.

20) Stand your ground.  Children are stubborn sometimes, but you are the boss always.

21) Teach him how to work. 

22) Teach him about money. 

23) Teach him how to give. 

24) He wants to know that you are proud of him.

25) Talk to him even when he won't talk to you.

26) Hug and kiss him even if he gets embarrassed. 

27) Trust your gut. 

28) Time spent together is better than a new toy.

29) Family is a gift.  Teach him that it is important to love and support one another.

30) Take him outside every day.  Let him run, jump, climb and yell.  He'll sleep good at night.

31) He's gonna skin his knees.  It's ok.  Little boys are tuff and your kisses are magical.

32) Mommy's are super heroes.  What you do is important.  Every. Little. Thing. 

33) It is more important for you to be fully present than to fight for perfection.  Present over perfect.

34) Always plan ahead, but hold your plans loosely - things often don't go as planned with children.

35) Go slow.  Never rush.  Hurry steals joy. 

36) Don't try to do everything.  Better to do a few things and do them well then to do everything, but poorly. 

37) You will feel like your not getting through to him.  Keep reminding him.  Those reminders will become habits when he is older. 

38) It's just a season.  No matter what stage he is in - this too shall pass.

39) Motherhood is the hardest job you'll ever have. 

40) It is also the best and most fulfilling thing you'll ever do.

41) You won't always do it perfectly, but there is more than enough grace.  God makes up for our lack.

42) Say you're sorry.

43)  Laugh with him.  A lot.

44) Don't tease him.  Let him know that you will never, ever make fun of him.  He is safe with you.

45) Teach him that home is a safe place where he is always loved, accepted and where he can be himself.

46) The mom uniform (sweats and a pony tail) is comfy, but sometimes you gotta do something to make yourself feel pretty. 

47) Emergency chocolate stash and a closet. Enough said. 

48) Coffee.

49) Go to bed on time.

50) Make rest a habit.

51) Wake up a few minutes early.  That quiet time before he wakes up makes ALL the difference.

52) Don't neglect your time with the Lord.  You need His direction daily.

53) Obey the Holy Spirit.  He will let you know what you need to know.  This is your secret weapon!

54) Keep singing.  Always let him hear you sing.

55) Introduce him to good music.

56) Never let him see you disagree with his dad.  If you must disagree, do it in private.

57) Never talk to him badly about his dad.  He should never feel like he has to choose sides.

58) Beware of mommy guilt.  Comparison and self-expectations are your enemies.

59) He is a gift.  Always loved and wanted.  He was never a mistake.

60) Teach him to look people in the eye, and to speak when spoken to.

61) Teach him that life isn't always fair, but that God is always good and there is always something to be thankful for.

62) Teach him to stand up for the underdog.

63) Teach him to respect you - you are the first woman in his life.  You are his greatest teacher.

64) God has good things for both of you.

65) I love you so much.

66) I am proud of you.

67) You are a great momma.

68) You can do hard things.

69) He is going to be ok.

70) You are going to be ok.

This list falls short, I know, and I'm still trying to learn much of this myself. I didn't expect to share these thoughts with my daughter for many more years.  It wasn't too long ago that I wrote this post for her: 82 Things I Want To Tell My Daughter Before Tomorrow.  I must say that I am proud of her for making the brave choice to carry Jaxson and to raise him.  Mommy and baby are doing wonderfully and we couldn't be more in love!  Thank you for your kind thoughts and prayers.  I love how God has loved us through you.