Monday, March 30, 2015

The Last Stretch & Our Weekly Link Up Party!


The Last Stretch!
& Our Weekly Link Up Party




Nine Months Pregnant & The Countdown Is On!!


I feel bigger than a swollen water buffalo...
Crying at a drop of a hat, for no sane reason...
Some days I can barely walk due to joint pain & ligament stretching...
Back aches day & night...

Hard to keep up with a lil tot when you're waddling around, but I do try!

So many unsettling 'symptoms' crop up at this time of
pregnancy...and it is not easy to say the least. 
My fellow Mamas know how that is.

BUT we're super excited that baby will be here
SOON!

I'm praying for God's strength to get me to the end.
Encouraging myself that this will soon be a distant memory :)

Above, you'll see a pic of me taken just a few days ago.
I have to admit I don't look very flattering towards the end of pregnancy,
but I do try to put myself 'together' to get out of the 
house when I have to.

Otherwise it's pajama pants & long over sized tees.
For real people ;)

I'll be keeping you all posted when baby arrives. 
You'll see some pics on our Twitter, Instagram &
of course on the blog when I get a chance.

Thanks in advance for all the prayers/supports!
We've appreciate them more than you know.


& now onto the link up party!!!

The Mom 2 Mom Encouragement Link Up Party



Mom 2 Mom Encourage brush border blank new


Welcome everyone to another week at the Mom 2 Mom Encouragement Party!!!
A place where all of us can come to be encouraged & refreshed.

Again, a big THANK YOU to everyone who was able to link up with us last week :)

So, please come & join in this week`s party, link up any applicable posts, AND please don`t forget to visit some other blogs as well.


Your Hosts:

Sarah from My Joy-Filled Life {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Instagram}    {Bloglovin'}


Jenn from The Purposeful Mom {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Google+}    {Bloglovin'}


Tauna from Proverbial Homemaker {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Bloglovin'}


Rachael from Diamonds in the Rough  {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Instagram}    {Bloglovin'}



You are welcome to link up AS MANY of your own posts that would offer encouragement, tips, wisdom, or advice to other moms.


Some suggested post topics are:

Homemaking, Motherhood, Meal Planning, Recipes, Christian Faith, Encouraging Words, Homeschooling/Education, Financial Stewardship, Health & Wellness, Hospitality, Marriage, Discipline, Ministry, Pregnancy & Childbirth, Time Management, Organization, Crafts & Activities for Kids.......

Each week we will be featuring the most clicked on post and each of our 3 favorites from the previous week.  We will also be sharing the featured posts on our social media outlets.




Most Popular From Last Week 


Being REAL as a mom




And some of my personal favs from last week...



Paleo Thai Chicken Pizza Recipe




White Chocolate Peeps Cookiewiches- a Peeps marshmallow buttercream is sandwiched between two white chocolate pudding cookies- a perfect sweet treat for Easter or spring!




 bracelet activity




& did you miss these posts from the blog?

What its like having a large family


 large families


& please be sure to check over at Proverbial Homemaker, The Purposeful Mom, and My Joy Filled Life to see if you were featured there!



Vote for me @ Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory



Don't want to miss a Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up?  

Sign up below to get an email reminder every Monday morning when the link-up is live (don't worry, we won't send you any other kinds of emails - this sign up is exclusively for the Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up).

Subscribe for Mom 2 Mom Link-Up Reminders


 






My Joy-Filled LifeMy Joy-Filled Life



***A few things you should know before linking up:
Please link up to a specific post on your blog, not your blog's main page.
By linking up your post(s), you are giving the hosts of Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up permission to use your graphics in the featured posts and on social media outlets.
PLEASE NOTE: Visit other bloggers - visit at least 3 other links at the party.
A link back is not required, but appreciated.  Go ahead and grab a button too, especially if you were featured.
The hosts would be blessed if you followed them.
They would also be blessed if you would spread the word about the Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up.

Please only link up posts from your own blog and not 

posts for others

And now for the link-up! 


   
   
















Monday, March 23, 2015

Are you looking to be encouraged this week as a Mama?

The Mom 2 Mom Encouragement Link Up Party



Mom 2 Mom Encourage brush border blank new


Welcome everyone to another week at the Mom 2 Mom Encouragement Party!!!
A place where all of us can come to be encouraged & refreshed.

Again, a big THANK YOU to everyone who was able to link up with us last week :)

So, please come & join in this week`s party, link up any applicable posts, AND please don`t forget to visit some other blogs as well.


The Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up is built on the foundation of 1 Thessalonians 5:11


"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV)"


This is a place you can come to offer encouragement to other moms as well as be encouraged. 



Your Hosts:

Sarah from My Joy-Filled Life {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Instagram}    {Bloglovin'}


Jenn from The Purposeful Mom {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Google+}    {Bloglovin'}


Tauna from Proverbial Homemaker {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Bloglovin'}


Rachael from Diamonds in the Rough  {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Instagram}    {Bloglovin'}



You are welcome to link up AS MANY of your own posts that would offer encouragement, tips, wisdom, or advice to other moms.


Some suggested post topics are:

Homemaking, Motherhood, Meal Planning, Recipes, Christian Faith, Encouraging Words, Homeschooling/Education, Financial Stewardship, Health & Wellness, Hospitality, Marriage, Discipline, Ministry, Pregnancy & Childbirth, Time Management, Organization, Crafts & Activities for Kids.......

Each week we will be featuring the most clicked on post and each of our 3 favorites from the previous week.  We will also be sharing the featured posts on our social media outlets.




Most Popular From Last Week (TIE)




Need motivation to simplify and declutter? Here are the 7 things that I was surprised to learn when I purged our home of over 168 things!




Did you know that you can make things like cheesecake, caramelized onions, yogurt and rice in your slow cooker? Check out these 25 Creative Ways to Use Your Slow Cooker for recipes!





And some of my personal favs from last week...




Kid-Approved-Whole-30-Meal-Ideas-Lou-Lou-Girls





Snickers-Almond-Brownies-3




 homeschooling



interest led learning nature study



 social media







& did you miss these posts from the blog?



 large families



What its like having a large family



& please be sure to check over at Proverbial Homemaker, The Purposeful Mom, and My Joy Filled Life to see if you were featured there!



Vote for me @ Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory



Don't want to miss a Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up?  

Sign up below to get an email reminder every Monday morning when the link-up is live (don't worry, we won't send you any other kinds of emails - this sign up is exclusively for the Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up).

Subscribe for Mom 2 Mom Link-Up Reminders


 






My Joy-Filled LifeMy Joy-Filled Life



***A few things you should know before linking up:
Please link up to a specific post on your blog, not your blog's main page.
By linking up your post(s), you are giving the hosts of Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up permission to use your graphics in the featured posts and on social media outlets.
PLEASE NOTE: Visit other bloggers - visit at least 3 other links at the party.
A link back is not required, but appreciated.  Go ahead and grab a button too, especially if you were featured.
The hosts would be blessed if you followed them.
They would also be blessed if you would spread the word about the Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up.

Please only link up posts from your own blog and not 

posts for others

And now for the link-up! 



   
   




Wednesday, March 18, 2015

What It's REALLY Like Living In A Large Family!




Ever wonder what it's like having a large family? 



What its like having a large family




Life with a large family can be busy, wild, costly and loud; but life is also, never dull, nor lonely and overflowing with love and joy.  I absolutely love looking in my rearview mirror and seeing a van full of beautiful faces smiling back at me. :)

It takes a tight, team effort to run an efficient household and a sense of humour definitely helps.  



Here is my view on what it's like having a large family:


Making compromises

A lot of time and energy goes into decision-making in our home.  After all, four voices need to be heard (well the baby doesn't count yet, but you get the idea).  Family votes are a frequent occurrence.


Yes, they're all mine

I unload child after child out of the van and people look at us as if we're the Von Trapp family.  The comments, whispers, looks and stares are constant.  Sometimes they're friendly, other times jokingly sarcastic or even out of line; nonetheless, it's a way of life we've come to embrace.


Inhale

I bet you thought I was talking about taking a deep breath... I'm actually referring to the way my children eat.  They are like puppies who are fighting the litter to get their share...worried that a sibling is going to gobble up all the food.


Extra time

Setting the table, laundry, cleaning and even preparing for craft activities or buckling kids into the car takes double, triple, quadruple etc. the time.  Many times people ask me how long it takes to get out the door on my own with my four wee ones.  When they were younger it took about three hours and some strategic planning around feedings and changes.  Now that they're a few years older, I can pack up the bag and the kids and be out the door in under an hour.


Called it

Kids in large families "call" things.  Each time they leave a room, they're paranoid a sibling is going to take their seat, their toy, their drink etc.  While en route to her time out spot the other day, my three-year old whispered to her sister to guard her toys while she was there.


Outings

We choose our outings extra carefully when it involves admission costs for six.  Being sure to read the small print on coupons made for families of four.  We often take advantage of free and/or affordable activities.  When we do purchase tickets to a show or concert, it can be challenging finding six seats together.


More...just more..

More voices to be heard.  More eyes trying to see what someone is pointing at.  More children waiting for their turn to roll around.  More diaper changes.  More groceries.  More laundry.  More opinions.  More bedtime stories.  More laughter.  More to love...


2014

Leanne is a stay-at-home mom, & in her spare time enjoys studying natural nutrition. She is also following a deep desire that runs in her heart, by reigniting the flame she once had for writing. 

She hopes that you will come by her blog & join her! 
Anchored by love is the story of her heart.



Mom 2 Mom Encourage brush border blank new



& did you miss any of these posts from our large family series??


 large family myths

 large families


Monday, March 16, 2015

Looking for some ENCOURAGEMENT as a Mom this week?

The Mom 2 Mom Encouragement Link Up Party



Mom 2 Mom Encourage brush border blank new


Welcome everyone to another week at the blog party!!!
A place where visitors can come to be encouraged & refreshed.

Again, a big huge THANKS to everyone who was able to link up with us :)

So, please come & join in this week`s party, link up any applicable posts, AND please don`t forget to visit some other blogs as well.


The Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up is built on the foundation of 1 Thessalonians 5:11


"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV)"


This is a place you can come to offer encouragement to other moms as well as be encouraged. 



Your Hosts:

Sarah from My Joy-Filled Life {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Instagram}    {Bloglovin'}


Jenn from The Purposeful Mom {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Google+}    {Bloglovin'}


Tauna from Proverbial Homemaker {Facebook}    {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Bloglovin'}


Rachael from Diamonds in the Rough  {Pinterest}    {Twitter}    {Google+}    {Instagram}    {Bloglovin'}



You are welcome to link up AS MANY of your own posts that would offer encouragement, tips, wisdom, or advice to other moms.


Some suggested post topics are:

Homemaking, Motherhood, Meal Planning, Recipes, Christian Faith, Encouraging Words, Homeschooling/Education, Financial Stewardship, Health & Wellness, Hospitality, Marriage, Discipline, Ministry, Pregnancy & Childbirth, Time Management, Organization, Crafts & Activities for Kids.......

Each week we will be featuring the most clicked on post and each of our 3 favorites from the previous week.  We will also be sharing the featured posts on our social media outlets.




Most Popular From Last Week


Can you really eat well on a $200 grocery budget? Well, actually, yes you can! Here's the menu plan that our family of 5 enjoys.





And some of my personal favs from last week...



5 Minute Peanut Butter Chocolate Mug Cake // Life Anchored





Just in time for Spring! Get rid of your dead skin and get capri ready while pampering your self at home with this amazing DIY Coconut & Rose Scrub! Your skin will thank you!





The kitchen is a room in many homes that is used the most, so it needs special attention. Here are 8 ways to make it ready to bless your family with amazing awesomeness!





Gabi from Restful Living is here to share 3 of the ways to tailor the workbox system to work best for your family's homeschool organization!





& did you miss these posts from the blog?


 large families parenting



 large families


& please be sure to check over at Proverbial Homemaker, The Purposeful Mom, and My Joy Filled Life to see if you were featured there!



Vote for me @ Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory



Don't want to miss a Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up?  

Sign up below to get an email reminder every Monday morning when the link-up is live (don't worry, we won't send you any other kinds of emails - this sign up is exclusively for the Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up).

Subscribe for Mom 2 Mom Link-Up Reminders


 






My Joy-Filled LifeMy Joy-Filled Life



***A few things you should know before linking up:
Please link up to a specific post on your blog, not your blog's main page.
By linking up your post(s), you are giving the hosts of Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up permission to use your graphics in the featured posts and on social media outlets.
PLEASE NOTE: Visit other bloggers - visit at least 3 other links at the party.
A link back is not required, but appreciated.  Go ahead and grab a button too, especially if you were featured.
The hosts would be blessed if you followed them.
They would also be blessed if you would spread the word about the Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-Up.

Please only link up posts from your own blog and not 

posts for others

And now for the link-up! 



   
   

Thursday, March 12, 2015

How Do We Announce Such A Happy Occasion??




How Do We Announce Such
A Happy Occasion?






I will never forget that memorable morning; we were just hangin' out.
Her kids & mine.

We chatted & caught up on all that was going on.
The good, the bad & ugly that life so often throws our way.

Nearing the end of our rendez vous, I mentioned in passing that I was
well, uh, "late".

She told me I just HAD to buy 'the' test & & of course text her immediately upon
learning said results.

I sort of giggled to fluff it off...said I didn't really want to know.

Too. much. going. on...
Bad. timing.
Couldn't. be. possible. 

But a dollar store isn't too far out of the way, and
their tests are fairly accurate.

I stopped on the way home, and
once there it wasn't long til I was in the bathroom.

Oh....
Those famous two dark lines.
Darker than any I've ever experienced with my prior pregnancies.

Shoot...
I must be farther along than I thought even possible.

What am I going to do??
This was not my timing.
Doesn't seem the right time at all.





Probably 2-4 years apart; yep that was our plan.
Six kids, like we had always dreamed together.

But then life happened.

Add in that number 5 was THE most difficult pregnancy
I had ever experienced, and well, you have a recipe of 
why I told hubs, I'm sorry, but NO more!

I don't care what we said. Five is good :)

Add in the fact that our finances were wilting
under very unexpected expenditures...

And that we had been going through a grueling season
of testing with our children.
With our extended family..

In summary: life had hit us hard.

I was already feeling stretched more than ever before.

No, this wasn't the right time.

Fast forward a week ish later.
Signs of impending miscarriage started.
Some spotting & the like.
Cramps, etc.

I was sure that this baby wasn't viable and probably 
would pass soon.
Felt such mixed emotions...

Grief, and guilt (for being so scared)
& sort of relief...
(I feel so horrible writing that, but I have to be honest)

I meet my midwife for tea.
I update her on my life.
We chat & then I tell her the news.


DIY building block people for children! Six adorable girls and boys to mix and match.


We book a dating ultrasound in about a month.
I tell myself we'll wait & see what's really going on.
The pregnancy symptoms don't seem very strong, so who knows what's going
on in my womb??

A month later & I see a little flicker.
A heart beat of hope & a wee one full of promise.

Then more 'fun' news...

Placenta didn't form properly.
Not to worry. Common, but still risks.

Baby may have Tri-18.
We need more tests.

We didn't see the back bone at that last ultrasound...
We found the head was less than 5% average...too small.
Could be due to placental issue.

More financial strains.
More stress with the children.
Seeking out help from trusted loved ones.

Feeling so alone.


 life unplanned



I tell more trusted friends & family.
They check in on me.

I go for multiple ultrasounds.






Some days I'm FULL of faith & all worry dissipates.
Other days I feel like the waves of life are crashing over me.

One day, I'm driving home.
I see a sunset.
Red sky, sailors delight right?

I feel a small voice inside me whisper, "It's going to be okay Rachael."
I recognize His comforting voice.
I feel relief.

And in that moment the fear subsides.
Just for that moment it totally disappears.

It does return many a night to haunt me,
but I begin to 'fight back'.

I get into the Word daily.
I journal.
I go & speak to those who I can trust.

I won't let it overwhelm me like it has in the past.

I won't give up.

Hubs & I pick out a name that is fitting.
(we learn it's another boy...yay!)

Nathanael
Means "Gift of God"




I give myself the luxury of allowing some joy to creep in.
Baby is going to be okay, isn't he?

I keep praying. Day, night. sometimes I sound
like a 'nut job'.

Hubs & I are working with our children.
We're making plans & implementing changes.

Life gets a bit easier.

Finally it seems the stress begins to crack.
All of a sudden, prayers begin to be answered!

Our last two ultrasounds show baby is healthy
& at a 90% growth rate! What?!

Total turnaround.

Miraculous.

Then we hear that some of our outside financial pressures
are subsiding as well.

Our children begin to turn corners.

Life is not perfect, but I truly feel released to rejoice!

So finally, on the blog...





& we're super excited!


He'll be here within the month.

& don't worry, they'll be pics :)




Vote for me @ Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory

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