Friday, April 27, 2012

Living in Harmony as a Mom

I've considered this idea quite a bit lately... living in harmony as a mom, and particularly what that looks like when interacting with other moms and their children. You hear about that mom that's always fighting the principal saying, "MY child would never do that!" or the mom who always is blaming other children, "Oh Johnny, don't worry about that... it's not your fault, it's HIS fault" or the mom who always is bragging on her child, "My child was first in this, and beat all the other kids in this, and excels 5 grade levels higher in this..." I know I don't want to be that mom. But I'm beginning to understand exactly how much grace is involved once you start interacting a lot with other parents. I especially find it difficult to not let my pride creep in. 

I want to recognize that other parents have different parenting styles, and perhaps mine is not the only way or the best way. I also want to recognize that my child is capable of making bad choices and mistakes. And she will.

I have chosen a parenting style that I really like... it includes things such as natural birthing, breastfeeding, cloth diapering, cry it out, separate sleeping (no co-sleeping), disciplining, delayed vaccinations, and delay in offering solid foods (wait until 5 or 6 months). While I am happy that I have found a parenting style that I love and am comfortable with and that works well for us, I have found it equally difficult to not be judgmental toward those that choose a different parenting style. I often have to take a step back and check my motives. And often, I find that I'm pushing an agenda that isn't significant in the end. Sure, I really love saving money with cloth diapers and am happy to not be adding disposables to landfills... but in light of eternity, does a parent's choice to use disposables really matter? No. Sure, I am proud, happy, and relieved that letting Sophie cry herself to sleep a few times has made her a great sleeper. But if a parent chooses to not let his or her child cry to sleep, does it really matter in the light of eternity? Nope, probably not. I'm thankful that God is helping me to see these situations realistically. I still love to share my opinion, but I'm learning to ask God to give me wisdom in this. Sometimes people don't care about my opinion. Sometimes people don't need my opinion. And sometimes I just need to be more careful about how I share my opinion. It's good for me to recognize this because I don't want to ruin good relationships by being judgmental of others' parenting styles.

Now that Sophie is older, walking, and gaining more of a personality, she also is making choices that I have to watch closely. She recently likes to do this thing where she chases someone around and then pushes on them (her version of tag). This works and is super cute with adults, but it doesn't work so well with another 1 year-old. I'm having to make choices so that I don't offend other parents. I also have to make choices to hold my tongue when other parents say something to Sophie. I'm amazed at how quickly I can become defensive. Sometimes I realize it's good another parent asks Sophie to give something back or to be more gentle because, to be honest, I just wasn't watching her actions close enough. And other times parents say or do something that involves Sophie that I don't particularly care for, but I recognize that for the sake of our friendship, I should just brush it aside.

I'm learning quickly that being a parent... especially being a mom who lives in harmony with other moms... involves a lot of tongue-biting and slow reactions. I am thankful for the opportunity to be Sophie's mom, and I am thankful that God is teaching me how to live in harmony with others through this position he has allowed me to have.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Easter, Pigtails, Friends, and Independence [12 months]

Time for some pictures! Here are some pictures of Sophie from Easter...

I finally did pigtails on Sophie! She hates when I do her hair, so I usually don't try... but I was finally determined, and she was so cute! :)

I decided I needed a new picture of Sophie and Asa together, and now that they're both walking, they're go-go-go. So I set them in the rocking chair so that they were stuck :)

I LOVE watching Sophie play by herself. She's pretty good at it too. Of course, these are the times I should be getting other things done, but sometimes it's just too fun to watch her play. I especially love watching her read. It's really hard to be quiet though, and if she hears me coming toward her or open the camera, she always looks up...

But I did get one picture of reading :)

She's growing up so much lately! I realized yesterday that she says the word bellybutton when she sees my bellybutton (so silly!), and I asked her yesterday what a cow says, and she said, "mmm" for "moo." She's always surprising me with how smart she is! She also likes making me clap my hands and feeding me cheerios. One of my favorite things that she does right now is that she'll pick up a book and then come over and sit on my lap for me to read it. I sure do love this little girl :)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Milestones and Schedule Update [12 months]

I wrote before about Sophie's milestones, and I thought I would catch up on the last few months. I know I've listed them in posts, but I appreciate having them all listed together:

9 Months:
-Gives kisses
-Drinks from a cup (not sippy)
-Says "ball"
-Stands with help
-Got first haircut

10 Months:
-Walks with a walker
-7th tooth
-Claps hands
-Throws kisses
-Says "duck"
-Uses straw sippy cup
-Learns fine motor skills with toys
-"Dances" by bouncing up and down and waving hands

11 Months:
-8th tooth
-Stands on own
-Points to what she wants or what we say
-Plays peek-a-boo
-Says "Mama"
-Says "Uh oh"
-Says "Yeah"
-Says "Please"
-Takes 8-10 consecutive steps
-Says "Woof"

12 Months:
-Says "Baby"
-Says "Balloon"
-Says "Mouth" and points to it

I also posted schedules from Sophie's life, and she now has a different schedule again, so I wanted to post it. I know others may not care about her schedule, but I want to remember for future kids, so I post this for myself :)

12 Month Schedule:
7:15am - Wake up and nurse
8:00am - Breakfast
10:30- Snack
11:00am - Nap (40 min.)
12:00pm - Lunch
2:00pm- Snack
3:00pm - Nap (1.5- 2 hour)
5:15pm - Dinner
7:00pm - Snack
8:00pm- Bed

Her schedule is so much easier now than it was in the early days! And she's down to just nursing once a day. I think we'll be done nursing soon :)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

10 Extra Minutes

One thing we've started this past week was pack n play time. The idea started from me wanting to be lazy and not get up right away one morning- so we set up her pack n play and put some toys in it, and she played for 10 minutes before I got her (and myself) up for good. Hey, 10 minutes is 10 minutes! I decided it was probably good for her to play by herself for a little while in a confined area because she's usually go, go go! So I've been doing it every morning, and she lasts for about 10 minutes each morning, which I think is good, and I appreciate my 10 extra minutes.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Sophie's First Birthday Party!

We celebrated Sophie's first birthday party last tuesday night. Her theme was pink birdies which was a great theme right around easter time.
She was super cute and super spoiled.
Lots of yummy food was there! Grandmas made the main dishes while Aunt Brianna made the brownies, and Laken and I made the cake pops!
I was really proud of how the cake pops turned out since it was my first time making them and I was trying to be ambitious with them...
She LOVED her cupcake, but she loves all food, so I wasn't surprised...

She got lots of fun new toys and clothes!
Thanks to everyone who made Sophie's first birthday party fun!!