Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Blessing of Girls

Yesterday I watched a show on the Discovery Health channel entitled, "8 Boys Wanting a Girl". The show followed a couple of families who had boys who were desperate to have a girl. One woman had 8 sons, and was hoping for a girl. Her very first child was a girl who did not make it full term, and she has grieved for that daughter that she should have had and has never had.

Two other women had four boys. One tried one more time to get pregnant and she prayed fervently that this fifth child that she was carrying would be a girl, because this was her last time trying. She went to the doctor for the ultrasound and found out that she was carrying. . . another boy. She broke down in tears and quickly composed herself and said it was ok and that she was fine.

Later in the show she said she did not know what to do with her sadness over knowing that she will never have a daughter.

The other lady that had four boys tried a type of in vitro fertilization that allows parents to choose the sex that they want and have that embryo implanted in them. They had 8 embryos and only one was a girl. She was very excited.

The doctors implanted the female embryo, and told her to take a pregnancy test in 9 days to confirm that she was pregnant, and that everything was a success.

She took her pregnancy test, and sadly, she was not pregnant. She was crushed and broke down into tears.

I was completely fascinated watching this show. Astoundingly, the last woman profiled had four boys and was not married to the father, and refused to marry him until they had daughters. They did the in vitro fertilization that allows you to choose the sex, and they ended up with twin girls.

She married the father, and she said that is so thankful,and that it was completely worth it. Her girls are everything that she hoped for and more.

Now, for the commentary:

Most of the women on the show said that people thought they were crazy for wanting a girl so badly, and that they should just be thankful for the children they already have. And, these women wanted to feel that way too, but they just couldn't shake their strong desires for a girl.

It sounds so selfish and absurd, but, honestly,. . . I could relate to them in a way.

Is it right
? I don't think so. But, is it a feeling that many women have? Yes.

It sounds sad and pathetic, but I understood what these women were feeling to some degree, because I felt the same way with my own children.

Growing up I always wanted to have a son first, and then a daughter. I always wanted to end up having two boys and two girls. After being a teacher, though, I began to really long for having a daughter.

In my thinking boys were a handful: they were super active, always had to be moving around, always into things, most of my behavior problems were boys. And, the thing was they weren't bad boys. Most of them were kind hearted and good boys, but they were just so active!!

Most of my girl students on the other hand were sweet and quiet and sat attentively in class, and it did not take much to get them back in line if they were disruptive. Afer being a teacher I couldn't wait to have a little girl of my own, plus there were sooooo many cute things for little girls.

When I got pregnant with my first child, I just assumed I was having a girl, and daydreamed about all of the cute stuff she would have, the fun things we would do, and that I would have a little person like me. When my husband and I were at the doctor to find out the sex of the baby and I found out it was a boy, I was crushed. I surprised myself with how crushed I was.

Embarrasingly, tears sprang to my eyes, and I tried to hide them, but my husband saw them and looked at me with bewilderment. After leaving the doctor's office he told me that he couldn't believe I was crying over having a boy. I should be thankful just to have a healthy baby. Of course, I knew he was right, but it did nothing to stop the sadness over not having a little girl. All I could think about were the little boys I used to teach, and how superactive they were, and I thought what life would be like ahead.

But, as my pregnancy went along, I became more and more excited about his arrival. When I had him, I was so overwhelmed with joy and happiness, and he has been a true blessing in my life.

When I found out I was expecting again I prepared myself for having another boy. When we went to find out the sex, I was so nervous, and silently prayed for a girl. I was so excited when I found out I was having a girl.

I was so excited that wasn't even that sad about having another C-section. I was really upset about having a C-section the first time, and was depressed about it for awhile afterwards. Anyways, I was laying on the operating table just giddy with excitement, not even caring that I'm having another C-section, I just couldn't wait to meet my daughter.

So, I could relate in some ways with what these women felt. And I felt bad for them, because I know that there are blessings with having both boys and girls. Have you ever noticed when a woman has one of each sex, people are like, oh good, you have one of each now. It's a blessing to have children, period. But, it's also great to have boys and girls, and not just one sex.

Obviously if a couple just has one sex of children they have to be thankful for what they have and realize that God doesn't make a mistake.

So, what's so great about having girls:

1. You can do girly things with them.
2. They are like human baby dolls that you get to dress up and enjoy. :)
3. You can train a little homemaker and have a helper in the kitchen and around the house.
4. You have someone to pass on womanly wisdom to, and see that wisdom manifest in her life.
5. You have someone to go shopping with and go to tea with. I love afternoon tea, and I have a little girl that can share in that pastime with.
6. In a way, you can relive your own childhood. You get to reexperience playing with dolls, having tea with your dolls, and just remembering how you were as a girl.
7. As they get older, you (hopefully) have a best friend. My mother is definitely one of my best friends, and we have always had a close, special relationship. My grandmother is one of my mother's best friends. And, I hope when my daughter is older that we will be best friends too.
8. There are many more. . .

Boys are blessings too, no doubt, and I will do another post about the joys of boys.
Watching the show just struck a chord in me and I understood their sadness. Having a girl is a blessed thing for many reasons, and I am thankful that God blessed me with one of each.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Who Is Raising The Children?

I've been taking classes toward my teacher recertification, which has been a good experience for the most part. I'm taking a class on Dialects, which I thought would be extremely boring, but it has turned out to be relatively interesting. So, yesterday the class started doing short presentations about our research projects, and one lady presented on how her children speak differently and she wanted to research how children acquire language. Her husband is from Virginia and one of her daughters speaks with a Virginian accent and the other daughter speaks with more of a Southern accent.

The professor then shared his experience and said that his daughters had the same experience. The woman who cared for his children had a very strong Southern accent, and he and his wife do not. But, for the longest time his children did, because of being around her.

And he said, "It was amazing that my children had the exact same accent as the woman who raised them, . . . I mean, who helped to raise them."

I thought to myself, no, you had it right the first time. The woman who raised them.

When women go to work and leave the care of their children with someone else everyday for the majority of the children's waking hours, then that person is raising them.

And it's sad.

The other day a radio personality talked about the guilt that so many working mothers face. They feel guilty for not being there for their children, and so they try to make up for it with material things, and trying to give them everything that they want. Which, obviously, does more harm than good. Material things cannot make up for a mother's absence in the home.

There are many women that feel that they must work to help their family, and I think the best solution to that is working part-time or working from home if possible. With the economy as it is it can be very challenging for families right now. But, I don't think that children have to be completely abandoned for a family to stay afloat.

Raising children, especially during the first 3- 5 years is so crucially important to do while being home with them. I think whatever sacrifice is necessary to take to ensure that a mother is home with her children during their most informative years is worth it. There is always time to go back to a career. But, you can never get back the years that you are the center of your child's world.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Disney Princess

I've been watching The Princess and the Frog over the past couple of days, and I must say that the movie is growing on me.

I love the whole Disney Princess thing, and I was SOOO excited when I heard about the movie being made. I was so happy because I had lamented the fact that there was no Black princess for years before the movie came out. I remembered thinking, I want my little girl to have a Black princess to look at. And now she does, and I'm excited about that.

When we went to see the movie last year, I was. . . disappointed. I had such high hopes and was so excited to see the movie. I was let down. Mainly because she was a frog for at least half of the movie.

My two year old absolutely adores Princess Tiana and here are some of the things that I love about the movie:

*Princess Tiana is pretty.

*She has a strong work ethic.

*Her singing, "Almost There" in her soon to be restaurant.

*The beautiful animation.

*The prince and princess make a handsome couple.

*The first half of the movie before she turns into a frog.

*That she was a feminine, kind hearted, and lovely young lady.

*Did you notice that most Disney princesses always wear dresses throughout the entire movie? In this movie all the women in the movie wear dresses, and it's just. . .nice, I guess.

What I did not like:

(Before becoming a parent I used to think some parents were being over the top when they said that many children's movies and shows are actually not suitable for them and contain things that should not be viewed. Case in point here. I have to fast forward through various scenes.)

- I did not like the whole voodoo aspect in the movie. I had to fast forward through those scenes. I think they are inappropriate for young children.

-Some parts were VERY crude, like the guy who shot the bug out of his nose. Absolutely disgusting!

-The fact that they were frogs through most of the movie.

-Princess Tiana was a frog for half of the movie.

-She spent most of her time being a frog.

Ok. Other than that I really enjoyed the movie. My favorite Disney character is Belle from Beauty and the Beast, because she loves to read and the movie is just so wonderful. I was hoping to like this movie just as much or more, but that did not quite happen. Maybe if she had been a human throughout the entire movie, or the majority of it at least.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Protecting Our Children

I watched The Oprah Show last Friday which featured Tyler Perry and 200 men who were victims of childhood sexual abuse. The show was heartbreaking to watch. Oprah shared the statistics that 1 out of 4 girls are sexually abused by the age of 18, and that 1 out of 6 boys are sexually abused by the age of 18. My jaw dropped. I couldn't believe it.

Many people when having daughters think about how they have to watch out for their daughters so they are not taken advantage of. Most people don't think about being overprotective with their boys. But, now, parents really need to be.

It makes me consider being an overprotective parent. I know in our society overprotective parents are kind of made fun of, and often told to loosen up, let their child go and have fun, you don't have to be around them all the time, etc. But, now I'm thinking being overprotective is the best and safest way to raise my children.Many of these stories these young boys shared involved trusted males in their lives from fathers to stepfathers, uncles, older counsins, priests and other church leaders, boy scout leaders, and even teachers! It's scary!!

It makes me feel distrustful of leaving my children alone while they are young with anyone besides their grandparents.

While watching the show I thought about Elizabeth Krueger whose wonderful website, Raising Godly Tomatoes, has great advice for raising Godly children. She talks about how she keeps her children close to her, and doesn't really allow them to associate with people outside of their family. When they do socialize with others it's as a family. She doesn't allow her teenagers to hang out with their friends without parental supervision.

When I first read about that on her website I thought maybe that was taking it a bit overboard, but now I'm not so sure. I think while children are young, up to their teen years children need to be very closely observed and mainly kept around their family if at all possible. I think doing otherwise is just too risky this day and age.

And honestly, it's not just this day and age, this has been going on for awhile. Most of the men on the show were in their 30-50's, some even older than that. So this is not somethng new. I know of an older relative in her 50's who said that her parents went fishing many weekends and left her and her siblings in the care of their aunt and her family. She has often said that she wished that her parents were more observant and protected them more, because things went on there that shouldn't have. She has been molested by family members, and feels that if her mother had been more watchful then it probably wouldn't have happened.

I just feel that parents have a responsiblity to protect their children, even if it means being overprotective. Sure, allow children to have their friends come over, allow yourself a break now and then and let them stay with grandparents or someone you really trust. But, for the most part, I think children need to be with their parents where they can keep a watchful eye on their children and raise and train them up in the way that they should go.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Rules Marriage on Real Housewives

I enjoy watching The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. It is one of my favorite shows. I love all of the beautiful homes and scenery, and just watching the women interact with their families.

My favorite housewife is Kyle Richards Umansky. She is a beautiful woman with a very handsome husband who seems to adore her, and four beautiful daughters. Blessed life! I think it's sweet that she has four children, considering she lives in Beverly Hills and is a former actress. Most people in general keep it at two children, especially the rich and fabulous.

Her husband seems to adore her. The way he looks at her and interacts with her just exudes love. I'm sure it's because of the way that she carries herself. She seems to be a strong, confident, feminine woman who is sure of herself, and won't take any nonsense from anyone, including him! Which, of course, makes him love her all the more I'm sure.

One of my favorite dating books to read when I was single was The Rules by Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider. It basically talks about having high standards when you are dating and having confidence in yourself. To believe and know that you are a unique woman and carry yourself as such. When women follow these rules, which many are old-fashioned rules that your grandmother would tell you to do, they will be much smarter about relationships and how to carry themselves in it. Most are things that my grandmother and mother told me to do, but it was still an informative and entertaing read. A Rules Girl is one who follows these rules and eventually marries the man of her dreams.

Kyle Umansky seems like a Rules Girl who ended up in a Rules Marriage. Way to go!

Another interesting tidbit is that her sister is Kathy Hilton, who has been married to her husband, Rick for 31 years. She married at 20 and has four children as well. When asked what was the secret to a long, happy marriage she told OK! magazine,

In addition to hard work, respect and date nights a couple times a week, it’s vital not to take one another for granted.
“Never get too, too comfortable, I believe. And be a little mysterious, unpredictable in a sense. You don’t want to wear your hair the same way all the time. Always keep things fresh and fun.”

I love hearing stories of loving marriages and happy families. Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

One of my birthday gifts a few weeks ago was a gift card to Victoria's Secret. Initially, I wasn't super excited about my gift, but once I entered the store, gift card in hand, I was so thankful for my gift.

I purchased a number of very feminine, frilly underthings, and I felt so good when I left the store. While shopping for my items I was reminded of how important it is for women to have pretty underthings. Even while growing up, my mother made sure that I had pretty slips, camisoles, and other underthings. Her mother had impressed upon her the importance of always looking your best, from your undergarments to your outergarments. It makes you feel even more feminine, and it's just important to care about your overall appearance.

I admit that after I had my son I slipped in this department, much to my husband's dismay, due to nursing and putting comfort over beauty. But, I made sure to go back to making sure that I always look feminine and pretty with my outergarments as well as my undergarments.

Little girls should be used to having pretty and girly, t-shirts, camisoles, slips, etc. Impart to them the importance of grooming and taking good care of themselves. It may seem like a minor thing to many women, but once you actually take the time to invest in beautiful, feminine undergarments, especially comfortable ones, then it will only enhance your femininity and beauty.

And, there's nothing like a beautiful hatbox or lingerie chest to keep your pretty things in, and having a pretty chest or hatbox for your little princess' pretty garments!

The beauty just inspires me. Seeing and wearing beautiful things just uplifts and inspires me. It's definitely a worthwhile investment.

Check out Raising Homemakers for more homemaking inspiration.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Strange Thoughts. . . Or Not So Strange

I've been feeling weird lately. Strange thoughts. Thoughts that I didn't think I would have for a loooooong time, or maybe not again. I'm almost scared to write it. . .but, . . . I kind of want another. . . oh, dare I say it,. . . baby.

I'm tempted to delete this post, because the last time that I thought, "Hmm, it would be nice to have another baby," I got pregant soon after. So, I have purposely pushed thoughts of more children out of my head.

When my son was 2 months old, I actually began to want another baby because it seemed like he was growing so fast. I figured another baby would help ease the sadness of him growing so fast. These were passing thoughts, because I don't think I actually wanted to get pregannt so fast( which was the following month).

It has been very busy having two children close together, and I haven't even entertained the thought of having another one.

But, lately when I see little babies with their mothers, I feel a twinge of. . . longing I guess. I would enjoy nursing and caring for another baby, and seeing my children be a big brother and sister. I think it would be fun.

It's a thought. It may pass. But, now I see why women have five or six children and seem pretty happy about it. It really is a blessing. . . which can sometimes be hard to remember while in the throes of parenting toddlers.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Goodbye September

I haven't even posted anything this entire month, my favorite month of the year! This month is special to me because I celebrated a birthday the other day. I'm 29. It's my last year in my twenties!! I definitely have to live it to the fullest!

My daughter turned two years old, and my son turned three years old!

I try to count my blessings everyday, because everyday is a blessing! The weather is beautiful and I am blessed to have my family around me.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Multiple Sources of Income from Home

If you are interested in earning money from home, even on a very part-time basis, you can use your interests and skills in writing to earn some income. Here are a few places to get you started that I have not mentioned before.

1. Textbroker

You can write articles of your choosing and receive payment for them at Textbroker. I haven't written for them before, so I'm not sure how much they pay, but the pay increases as your article rates go up.

2. Examiner

Examiner is looking for writers to write about family and parenting. If that is right up your alley, then go to their website and apply to be a writer. A few examples of topics they are looking for are: baby and toddler gear, attachment parenting, frugal families, kids nutrition and exercise, and many more topics.

3. Outdora

Outdora is looking for writers and bloggers. They are looking for writers with expertise in cooking, gardening, wine, feng shui, and outdoor patio design.

For those who have high traffic blogs, they are looking for bloggers to post on their blogs about assigned topics.

Email and put which job you are applying for in the subject line. Also include links to your blog or writing samples.

Go to Frugal Fridays to find out more ways to earn and save money!

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Better Way to Prepare Daughters for the "What If"

Preparing daughters to be homemakers may seem like a fairy tale idea to some. What if a young woman goes through a divorce, her husband dies, or in some other way is left to raise her children and support them.

What are we as parents to do? I have read a number of articles about preparing daughters for the "just in case", and I recently read a wonderful article by Mrs. Wayne Hunter of Fascinating Womanhood Alaska about ways that parents can still raise their daughters to be homemakers, but still prepare them to remain a homemaker if they are suddenly found husbandless.

Reading the article opened my eyes to ideas that I had not thought of in blessing my daughter for the just in case. I think it is one of the best articles on how to truly prepare daughters for the "what if". I encourage you to read it.

Here's a snippet:

Many mothers want to prepare their daughters by insisting that they get college degrees for professions in case they: never marry, marry but their husbands abandon them or the marriage ends in divorce, or marry but become widows at a somewhat early age. While this seems logical and like a good plan to many, the damage done by it can be irreversible and can undo a lot of teaching we’ve given our daughters on to how to be God-fearing women.

Read the full article here.

Check out Raising Homemakers for more great posts on preparing daughters to be homemakers!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Marry Wisely So You Can Be A Homemaker

Last week I discussed how important it is for us as mothers to help cultivate a spirit of service in our daughters to help prepare them for motherhood.

In raising a homemaker, I aspire to raise a daughter who loves Jesus and serves Him, who delights in taking care of others, who uses her gifts to the glory of God, who is a competent cook, can clean efficiently, and basically run a smooth running home. In other words, create a wonderful home for her family.

There is something else that I want to encourage my daughter to do as she grows up:

Marry a man who will protect and provide for her, and SUPPORTS her being a homemaker!

Lakita Garth, a powerful woman of God who inspired me greatly when I was in college, said that two of the greatest decisions that we will ever make are 1. Who we will serve. (Jesus) and 2. Who we will marry.

Both of those decisions greatly affect the rest of our life. I did not understand how who we married could be number two on the list, but I understand now.

Who we decide to marry influences our life, even whether or not we can be homemakers or not!

There are women who want to stay home, but do not because their husbands do not want them to be at home with their young children, and these women feel they must submit to their husbands and remain working outside of the home.

Of course, a wise woman will discuss whether her future spouse supports her desire to stay at home BEFORE they marry.

A wise older woman told me to make sure to marry a man who supported me in staying at home. It is not fair to marry someone and expect their views to change, because what if they do not? If being a stay at home mother is important to you, then do not marry someone who does not support that.

So, I want to train my daughter to be an excellent homemaker, but also to look for a man who is Godly and who supports being the sole financial provider while she stays home with the children. Even if it's for a season. Young children need a mother at home. As they get older, the situation may change, and so can circumstances. But, it's important for a young lady to marry a man who will support her in her endeavors to be a homemaker, if she knows up front that being a homemaker at home with her children is what she wants to do.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Purposeful Toddler Homeschooling

Homeschooling is fun! I didn't realize that it could bring such focus to my day, and make me bond with my children more. I see how much fun learning can be, and how excited my children are to learn new things. They are eager to learn and work on projects and such.

For the past year or so my "homeschooling" has basically consisted of me reading the children books, teaching when we go outside to play, and teaching things here and there, like teaching scriptures, a bit of Spanish, numbers, colors. All of it was done in a random way, and my children just kind of absorbed it, like how they both know The Lord's Prayer, from hearing me pray it. My son can recite the entire prayer, and my daughter can recite about half of it.

It is much more relaxed and fun that way. But, yesterday, I decided to be more focused with our school time. My son will be 3 and my daughter 2 in September, and suddenly I have been bombarded with people asking me is my son going to start Pre-K this year. Like everywhere I turn someone asks me when I'm going to start him with school. I haven't told anyone that I teach them at home, because it's not in a structured way, but they always comment on how smart they seem to be, and how much they know.

The past two days have been so much fun as I have focused more on incorporating "school" into our everyday routine. I have a block of time in the morning and in the afternonn strictly for school. They have been soooo excited to learn new things and work on skills. I am more intentional in teaching them things, and being creative with it as well. I feel a greater sense of purpose at home and with my children.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Teaching Our Daughters To Love Motherhood

Precious Moment
by Hulis Mavruk

I have been really blessed by the Raising Homemakers website, and today I want to share about ways to teach our daughters to love motherhood. Because as Titus 2 mothers, that is one of the things we are to teach the younger women (our daughters), to love their children.

How do we do that?

For me, I think about the biggest challenges of being a mother for myself. They are:

1. Patience

2. Desiring too much "me time." A.k.a. Selfishness

3. Selfishness

4. Training/Discipline

The common attitude among many women, and people in general, is that children are a burden. It is implied in the many remarks that people make about having children, like how their children drive them crazy, why would you want more than one or two, how they can't wait for their children to leave the house, etc.

Some people say that raising children is easy, and that it is not rocket science to raise good children. I think that's great for those people, and I wish that I could join their ranks. But, I am not at that station in life yet. For me, right now, I think that motherhood is hard.

There is a great post at Generation Cedar about the blessings of having children here. It was quite thought provoking, and I came away from it thinking, the reason a lot of women do not embrace having a lot of children is because it is HARD! At least for me it is. It is a daily struggle to fight my selfish nature and be the servant that God wants me to be. I want my daughter to enjoy motherhood, but what can I do as she grows up to prepare her for the joys and challenges of motherhood?

Our Little Angel
M.C. Wrey

The main thing that I can think of besides her committing her life to Jesus Christ is learning to


Motherhood is about serving others, and I think the more of a servant spirit one has, the easier it is to embrace motherhood. Serving others helps to combat selfishness. The more you do it, the more natural it becomes. Serving the needs of others is key to being a great mother. Especially with mothering young children, you must anticipate and take care of their needs, even when it is inconvenient for you. And, that was a hard pill to swallow, and sometimes still is. I now have a smile on my face when my daughter wakes up in the middle of the night and disturbs my sleep. Thankfully it doesn't happen often, but I've learned to embrace the inconvenience and snuggle with my baby for a few moments and lay her back down.

I think it is important for mothers to help cultivate a servant's spirit and heart in our daughters. Doing so will help mold daughters who anticipate the needs of and delights to serve the needs of her family, whether it's helping her mother around the house, taking over the cooking, caring for her siblings, giving her mother a break, and just finding ways to be an asset to her family.

I think it's important, too, to make sure that our children volunteer outside of the home and serve others. The few times I did so as a teenager made me feel so great inside to know that I was helping others. What a blessing to volunteer on a regular basis so that it is a habit to always think of the need of others, and not just focus on our own wants and needs.

I will end with an excerpt of a great post from another blog, Virtuous Living. A woman with 12 children tells of how she learned to embrace motherhood, and all of the children God wanted her and her husband to have.

She said,

It is true, that when you trust the Lord you are blessed in abundance. Children truly are an heritage of the Lord and happy is the man who's quiver is full of them. I would never change a thing. I have no regrets, nor do I feel I have neglected the ME in myself. Whosoever will find himself will lose it, and whosoever will lose himself shall find it. That's what I did. I put the ME away and tried with all my heart to do as the Lord bid.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Visions for my Daughter

*m.c. wrey, "my precious"

I delight in being feminine, and I want my daughter to do the same. It's amazing that so many people around me, who know that I delight in femininity, enjoy telling me that my daughter is going to be a rough and tough little tomboy, because she is an active almost 2 year old and she loves to climb on things. When we go places she usually wears a dress, unless she is going to be outside at the park and could get dirty then she'll wear a pair of shorts.

These same people, usually women, tell me that they were tomboys, and it's a good thing. I'm starting to think that they are secretly hoping that she will reject being a feminine, girly girl.

I usually don't respond to their comments, because I do not think there is much need. Young children will be young children, and that does not make them a tomboy. I enjoyed climbing trees with my brother, riding bikes, exploring in the woods, and playing basketball when I was younger. It was fun, and it was part of having a great childhood. But, I never considered myself a tomboy. I also enjoyed playing with my dolls, pretending to be a teacher to them, helping take care of my younger brother and sister, and wearing dresses and "looking pretty."

What things am I doing now to help nurture my daughter's femininity?

- Letting her help me clean. She enjoys dusting and wiping off the table.

- Dressing her like a little girl.

- Encouraging her to speak with a soft voice when she likes to get loud and boisterous.

- Letting her watch me cook, and "help" me with simple cooking tasks, like stirring.

- Praying vigilently over my daughter that God would mold her into the young lady that she needs to be, that He helps her maintain her purity until marriage, and live a life that is pleasing unto Him.

- Be an example of a feminine, Godly wife, mother and woman for her to see everyday. Knowing that I have little eyes watching me and mimicking me forces me to constantly try to be the best that I can be.

Do want more inspiration to raise your daughter to be a homemaker and embrace her femininity? Check out !!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Real Housewife and Movie Recommendation

I thought it was cute how Teresa, on The Real Housewives of New Jersey, told her party planner that she cooks the meals for her family every day, keeps her house very clean, and takes care of her four children - all without help. It was funny that the party planner was taken aback at that prospect. But, in this day and age, I guess it almost seems abnormal for a woman to do all three of those things.

She did inspire me to go clean my kitchen floor so that it could be extra sparkly clean and pretty right after watching the episode. :)

On another note, I highly recommend a wonderful Christian movie, called Belle and the Beast. I watched it the other day, and I really enjoyed it. Now, granted, the acting is not the best, but the overall story was beautiful and inspiring. It is a Christian version of Beauty and the Beast, and that movie is one of my all time favorite Disney movies. So, I encourage you to check it out.

Have a happy Thursday!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Home by Choice: Review

Home by Choice by Brenda Hunter, Ph.D is an excellent book, full of encouragement to mothers to stay at home with their children. I recommend it highly to any mother or mother-to-be. The main message that I took away from reading this book was that it is mothers who teach their children how to be human. It is by us loving them, nurturing them, forming a secure attachment with them, that allows them to grow into emotionally healthy young people.

I have always known that having a mother at home is important for young children, but I didn't realize just how important. In the book she says,
"The fact remains that babies thrive when they have sensitive, responsive, and consistent mothering. And they fail to develop their full potential when they are deprived of maternal love. They need their mother during their earliest years more than they need toys, socializing with other children, or the material comforts a second income will buy"(64).

This is something that should be engrained in young women before they have children. Imagine if most young ladies fully understood how important being right there at home with their children really was, and made choices to ensure that they would be a stay at home mom. Instead our culture has come to believe that it's ok to be a working mother, even when you do not necessarily have to be one. If at all possible if a woman has young children, she needs to make every effort possible to stay home.

Hunter goes on to write,
"Ironically, while some mothers do not realize just how important they are to their young, subhuman primates are biologically programmed to keep their infants nearby. . . The infants sleep beside their mothers at night and never wander far from their sight by day. They run to their mothers if they become alarmed or afraid. . . Apparently, subhuman primates make good mothers. Not only do they stay close to their infants, but when they discipline their young, rebuffs are always gentle"(76).

Hunter reveals studies that show how mothers become less sensitive in their interactions with their children when they place them in daycare, and the children, in turn, become less affectionate toward their mothers. A study went on to reveal that the more hours a child spent in daycare the less sensitive the mother was in interacting with her child, and the more negative the child was towards her.

This is critical because "the way a mother interacts with her child is an important predictor of later child development- affecting social, cognitive, and linguistic competencies in early and middle childhood." So, a mother has that much influence over how her children turn out! It is not a job for the faint of heart. That is why we as mothers have to pray without cease, and seek after God. We have such an important job, and what mother wants to fail her child?

No one, I would hope. Choose this day to invest in your children's lives. If a woman feels that she must work to help out financially, then working part-time may be the answer. Once a woman becomes a mother, the most important job that she has is loving, nurturing, and training them. What career success can be sweet if your home is falling apart?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Home By Choice

The other day I sat with a group of classmates in class as we discussed completing a group assignment. It was the first day of this summer class, and we ended up talking about what we do, and what program we are completing. One of the ladies said that she was a stay-at-home mother . . . and that she hated it! She said it was the worst job in the world, and she wouldn't recommend any woman doing it. She has a five year old and a two year old, so she said that she won't return to the workforce until her son starts school, but she is literally counting the days until that happens.

Another young woman in the group chimed in, and said, "I know, it's the worst. When I had my son, I couldn't wait to go back to work after being home for 10 weeks." 10 weeks? She said that she hated being at home, and that it is much easier to work, and come home to the children in the evening. Then, you only have to deal with them for a few hours, instead of a whole day.

Sadly, I listened, and I couldn't help but feel a twinge of understanding for what they were saying. How many times have I muttered to myself, "If only I had a job, and had a break from these kids!" Of course, I don't really mean it. 10 minutes later, I am back to feeling blessed to be able to stay at home with them.

The other week I mentioned that I was reading a book, "Home by Choice" by Brenda Hunter, and it was a wonderful read! Wow, did it bring home the importance of staying home with my children.

The main nugget that I received from reading this book was that young children need a mother at home to feel truly secure and safe in their world. That the bonds that are created between a mother and child will affect their future relationships and outlook on life in years to come. Mothers, we have a very important job. Sometimes it can be so demanding that you momentarily feel that a job could blissfully take you away from the responsibilities and demands of parenting.

But, it won't. Tomorrow, I will give a more detailed review of the book, but one of the most thought-provoking chapters from the book deals with violent children.

"Children who feel loved and valued by their parents do not kill. Children who kill do not spring up on the cultural scene overnight. . . it starts in infancy. Whenever parents are neglectful, abusive, or nonresponsive, they will have troubled kids who are angry and out of control by two or three years of age. . . By age five they are often at war with the world." (Hunter 159)

Reading this chapter made me truly realize that investing in my children's lives now is worth the financial strain, worth every stretch of my patience, worth every minute that I nurture, teach, kiss, hug, guide, train, and love on my children.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Good Reading for Mothers

I have been reading two wonderful books for mothers. All About Raising Children by Helen Andelin, the author of Fascinating Womanhood. And, Home by Choice by Brenda Hunter.

These books are soooo informative and educational. My eyes have been opened to how extremely powerful a mother is in the life of her children.

I am not finished with the books yet, but when I am I cannot wait to share a more detailed review of the books, and what I have learned from reading them.

Take care everyone!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Start Your Family

I got pregnant with my son one month after I got married. While my husband and I were happy to be pregnant so soon, a part of me felt a little embarrased to have gotten pregnant so fast. We weren't doing anything to prevent pregnancy, but I thought it would happen in about six months or so. Not the next month. But, God had other plans, and we were happy.

The reason I felt kind of embarrased was because there were many people telling me to make sure that I waited about two years before starting my family, and I know that a lot of people do that. It seemed kind of irresponsible to start our family so fast, without getting a firm foundation set for our marriage. Would you believe I almost felt like a pregnant teen when I told people I was expecting? Like it was something to be ashamed of.

I think back on how silly I was to feel that way. And, I felt embarrassment when I got pregnant with my daughter when my son was only 3 months old. I waited until I was showing to tell people that I was pregnant, because I didn't want to hear their responses. Again, silly girl.

Over on Ladies Against Feminism there is a book giveaway for the book, Start Your Family by Steve and Candice Watters. Their book encourages couples to start their families, and not be influenced to wait a number of years to start. It sounds like an interesting read. If you want a chance to win the book, head over there for your chance to win.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Making Marriage Work Part 2

The other week I wrote about making marriage work. I wondered about whether couples should try to make things work when a spouse commits infidelity, especially on a continuous basis. There has been so much talk in the media, and around dinner tables about marriage and cheating, and whether women should stay with their cheating husbands.

It has really made me think about whether a woman should try to fight for the marriage, or if it's doomed after a man perpetually cheats on her. I do not have the answers, but I've read some interesting things about having faith in the Lord to heal a broken marriage, and to try to be the best wife you can be, despite difficult circumstances.

Here is an excerpt of a testimony written to Debi Pearl from a wife that dealt with her husband's infidelity, and how she overcame it.

Allow me to start my letter by stating that I am a 34-year-old African-American female Chicagoan. I feel this is important to say because when first learning of your Created To Be His Help Meet book, I thought, that was not for today’s black family.

Shame on me, but I am typing this so others will not opt out of their blessing based upon stereotyping.

I have been married to my H.S. sweetheart for 13 years. Believe me, it has not been as sweet as it sounds. I come from a family of strong, independent black women. This was thought of as a blessing until I took a good look at why ALL the women in my predominantly-female family have been divorced. Yes, ALL OF THEM!
I was well on my way to being divorced myself. My husband and I had been separated for 3 years, 2 of which he had a live-in girlfriend, and 1 ½ years where all three of our daughters were sent to live with them!

You can read the rest here.

photo from I Think I Love My Wife.

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Touch of Pretty

Here's a picture of a vase of flowers in my kitchen. Small things like having a vase of pretty flowers does a lot to add beauty and cheer to your home. I love looking at it when I go into the kitchen.

If you cannot tell, I also love Portmeirion china. I think it's so feminine and pretty.

Over the weekend I found a fabulous little book that I want to purchase. It's called How to Sew a Button: And Other Nifty Things Your Grandmother Knew by Erin Bried. It seems to be jam packed with delightful insights into how to be an excellent homemaker. It reminded me of how I need to sit down with my grandmothers and learn more from them about being an excellent housewife, because they definitely fit the description.

Lastly, I was excited to learn about an acquaintance of mine who has started her own business, Pink Pastry Parlor, which is a bakery and also hosts girls tea parties and other events. It is soooo cute, and I was so excited that a young lady that I know has a cute business like this. If you live near the Norcross, GA area, be sure to check it out.

Have a wonderful Monday!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Score Essays From Home

I was recently hired to work from home scoring essays for Pearson. It's a great work at home opportunity for those who at least have a Bachelor's degree. If you are interested go here to apply.

Have a great weekend!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Importance of Beauty

Surrounding yourself with beauty is so inspiring and refreshing. Looking beautiful, and creating a beautiful surrounding can make life so much more pleasant and make you feel happier, despite whatever negative things in your life may be going on.

What makes me feel happy and inspired?

1. Taking a shower and dressing pretty. Putting forth the effort to look pretty just makes me feel good. Even if no one is going to see me, just knowing that I look nice, makes me feel good inside. We value what we take care of, so take care of yourself, and reflect your value. On the flip side, when I put on a baggy t-shirt and sweats, I just feel drab. Wearing a cute housedress, hair styled nicely, a touch of lipstick, and perfume, makes me feel so feminine and happy.

2. Cleaning. Seriously. Three years ago, I never would have thought I would say that, but cleaning makes me feel good inside. When you have a lot of clutter and disarray it can make you feel tense and anxious. At least, that's how I feel. So, I feel great when I tackle the clutter in my closet, on my desk, make the bathroom sparkly and clean. Cleaning makes me feel accomplished and I inwardly say "aaaahhhh".

3. Looking at pretty things. I love reading Romantic Homes and Tea Time. It just lifts my spirits to see such pretty things.

These are just a few things that make me feel happy on the inside, and put me in a good mood. They are simple things that I can do everyday to help me recharge and keep in touch with being beautiful on the inside and out.

Reading this verse inspires me to seek the beauty and joy in any situation:

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Philippians 4:8

Have a happy Monday!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Making Marriage Work

I have been thinking a lot lately about making marriage work, and is it more Godly to stay with a spouse who is not good for you, or get a divorce. In the Bible, God does make one concession for divorce, which is adultery.

In Matthew 19:9 He says,

I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

So fornication, or sex outside of marriage, is the only way that a Christian can rightfully divorce and be free to remarry.

Ok. There are many Christian teachers or preachers who exhort couples to make their marriage work, even if they are married to someone who is cheating on them. They should strive to do what they can to forgive their spouse and make their marriage even stronger.

Would it be "less Godly" to seek a divorce if your husband cheated?

People always talk about how people stayed together during our grandparents time and before them. Marriages lasted then. But, I know that many of those women endured cheating husbands, and they chose to look the other way. An older cousin of mine said, "I don't know what's wrong with these young women today. They don't know how to endure through a marriage. These days when a husband cheats, the wife divorces him. In our day we were strong women who knew how to endure."

My mother's reply was, "Do you call that strong though?"

If those generations of women divorced their husbands for cheating or physical abuse, what would their divorce rate really have been? Many people say that a cheater is a cheater, and will not change. But, sometimes these older women say that their husbands did change. . . at least to their knowledge.

I do know that divorce is a desvastating experience on all that are included, the spouses, children, and extended family. Is it more "Godly" to stay with a cheating spouse for the sake of having an intact family? Will God bless your desire to honor your marriage vows, even though your spouse did not honor his? Will God change that man and make him faithful? Is it worth it?

Former NFL player, Michael Irvin cheated on his wife numerous times throughout their marriage. She knew about his cheating, but stayed with him. After a couple of years, she gave up arguing with him about it, and just tried to be the best wife she could be, and prayed for her husband.

After abot 11 years of marriage, he finally committed to her and stopped cheating on her. That was a couple of years ago that he said this, so I don't know if he has remained faithful. But, 11 years?! Would you have the patience to wait 11 years for your husband to finally stop cheating on you? T.D. Jakes praised her for being such a God-fearing woman, and for her faith. But, should women look to that and use that as their hope that their husband may one day change?

What if it takes 20 years. Is it worth that?

This is already a long post, so I will continue more in a few days. . .

Monday, April 5, 2010

Check Out Ladies Against Feminism!

Ladies Against Feminism is back! And, I'm so excited. I think I first started reading their website in 2004 or so. I absolutely fell in love with it, and have been a fan ever since. They put into words what I already felt about a woman's role.

They were such a breath of fresh air in a world that was and still is so focused on women having careers and abandoning their homes and families.

Be sure to check out their new website, and enjoy!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Enjoy Every Minute

I read an article that really spoke to me, saying that children teach parents how to be parents. We as parents learn as much from our children as they do from us. The point being that we learn how to be more responsible, mature, patient, etc., from dealing with our children each day.

And that really hit home with me. When I was single, I looked forward to the day when I would get married and have children. But, I always made sure to live my life to the fullest, and enjoy being single while I was actually single. I didn't want to look back on my single days and think to myself, "Oh, I wish I had done this or that. . ." I do think that sometimes, but for the most part I was content as a single woman and I enjoyed my life.

It dawned on me the other day that this season of my life with two young children should be treated in the same manner. So often during the past two years, I have focused on the future, and how things will be when the kids reach this milestone or that milestone, or being busy with creating a successful home business so that I can remain at home with my children, that I haven't truly stopped and savored each day that I have with them.

My daughter turned 18 months old yesterday, and I realized that she's going to be 2 years old in 6 months! And, I just couldn't believe it. She's my baby, and she's going to be 2 soon. It made me feel kind of sad that my babies are growing up so fast.

God has really been ministering to me about truly enjoying and savoring this time with my children. I am investing in their little lives, and I want to look back on these days and know that I lived it to the fullest and enjoyed all these moments together. Having this mindset has made me more patient, and also more firm in training my children.

Any other career is secondary to the one I already have as my children's mother.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

16 and Pregnant

Ok. So, although I'm 28 years old, I can't help but watch MTV's 16 and Pregnant, because I enjoy watching people deal with motherhood. All through college my roommates and I would watch TLC's A Baby Story with fascination and longing. We would coo and aahh while looking at the sweet little bundle of joy and daydream about the day when we would one day hold our own little newborn.

I still watch A Baby Story and Bringing Home Baby, along with 19 Kids and Counting, when I happen to catch it on TV. I am usually entertained and enlightened while watching other people deal with their children. For some reason, it makes me appreciate having children all the more. I have to admit that watching these reality shows are one of my indulgences at night after putting the kids to bed or while they are napping.

Anyways, so I watch 16 and Pregnant for those same reasons, except that it's more depressing to watch. Yes, I watched season 1 and Teen Mom. Is this sad to admit? Ok, so I watched last night's episode, which was particularly depressing because the girl has a child with a very, very immature boy. He basically treats her like nothing, and she just sweetly holds out for him to change and take her back.

I felt so sad that I couldn't even finish watching the episode. Having a baby is a blessing. It is. But, waiting for marriage is the best way to welcome a child. And, even then, raising a child is hard work.

I pray for teen girls, and young ladies in general, to understand their value. I pray that they realize that they are precious. Their bodies are precious. Wait until marriage for sex. And, CHOOSE WISELY WHEN YOU MARRY!!!!! Because, not choosing wisely leads to more heartache.

What can we do to help young ladies make better choices?

1. Mentor
Every young woman can be a mentor to a teen. Because, we have all been teenagers before, and we can share any bit of wisdom that we can to help another avoid similar pitfalls, or share successful ways that we handled relationships or staying pure.

2. Pray

3. Volunteer
Volunteer around your community with organizations that promote abstinence, or even that help teen mothers. Teen mothers need support, just like other mothers do, and you can help her make better decisions for the future.

Do you know of other creative ways to help young ladies remain ladies, and save sex and children for after marriage?

Friday, February 19, 2010

Homemaker and Civil Rights Activist

Coretta Scott King, Dr. Martin Luther King's wife, was an inspirational woman for her class, poise, and dedication to her family and the Civil Rights movement.

She was born in 1927 to a truck farmer and a homemaker. She excelled in school, and graduated valedictorian of her class, and accepted a scholarshop to Antioch College in Ohio. After receiving her degree in music and elementary education, she accepted another scholarship to continue her musical training from The New England Conservatory of Music, located in Boston. She received a degree in voice and violin.

It was there that she met Martin Luther King, and they courted, and eventually married. When she started her family, she put her musical ambitions on hold. As time went on, while raising her four children, she used her musical abilities to contribute to supporting her husband, by holding Freedom Concerts as fundraisers to support the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Coretta Scott King was a woman who was dedicated to supporting her husband and raising her children, while putting her career ambitions on the shelf. She was considered to be the First Lady of the Civil Rights movement, and the title is well-deserved.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Work From Home Wednesdays: Demand Studios is Hiring

Demand Studios is looking for writers again, so if you have not already signed up with them, I encourage you to do so. I have gotten back into writing articles for them, and they have sooooo many articles to choose from. So, there's plenty of work. The pay is $7.50 or $15, depending on the type of article.

If you need a few extra bucks to spend, then it's a great opportunity. And, you get paid weekly!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Influencing Your Husband towards Christ

I love the courtship story of Mark and Desiree Jackson. He is a former NBA player, and she is a gospel singer. The story of their courtship, and how her commitment to Christ led Mark to Christ is inspirational.

Young ladies, be inspired to be bold in your faith, and not to lower your standards. God will bless your faithfulness!

I am not tech savvy with showing clips, but you can go here. Click on the Feb. 4th show to watch their testimony. Move the green line to an hour into the show, at 1:03:00.

I was really blessed by their testimony, and her strong values as a young woman.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Love and History

This month is Black History month, and in celebration of it, and Valentine's day, I'm going to share inspiring love stories of Black couples throughout the month. I love reading about love, romance, marriage, and family, so why not post about it on the blog?

I'm going to start with one of my favorite love stories, that of Jackie and Rachel Robinson. As many of you know, Jackie Robinson was the first Black to enter the professional baseball league. He was an extraordinary man, and his relationship with his wife, Rachel, was special.

The courtship and marriage of legendary baseball player Jackie Robinson, and his wife, Rachel Robinson is inspiring and beautiful. Their marriage was based on mutual respect, love, admiration and commitment. It inspired me so much, that I became determined to marry a man with Jackie Robinson's qualities. There was more to the man who broke racial barriers by becoming the first Black baseball player to play in the professional leagues.

Jackie Robinson was a man of strong moral courage and conviction. Raised by a single mother whose husband deserted her with five children to raise, Jackie had a close relationship with his mother. Although he was close to following a rough path in life, a young Pastor took him under his wing, and inspired him to develop a stronger faith in God. Jackie Robinson was known as a man who tried to do the right thing. He had character and class.

He met his wife, Rachel Robinson, at UCLA, where they attended college. He was a senior and she was a freshman. She was a nursing student, who was serious about her studies, and a very classy lady. A mutual friend introduced them, and their romance blossomed. They courted for five years, because Rachel wanted to wait until after she had graduated from her 5 year nursing school program. After they married, Rachel became a homemaker, and focused on tending to their home and supporting her husband.

What makes their marriage so inspiring and beautiful is because Jackie Robinson was an athlete who withstood temptation and chose his wife every time. Teammates joked and teased him about his fidelity to his wife. While most of his teammates chased women, drank alcohol, smoked, etc, he remained steadfast to his commitment and loyalty to his wife, and to living a life that was above reproach. His teammates attested to the fact that he was so straightlaced, and did not have other women.

One of his roommates, Joe Black, said, "When he'd be on that phone talking to Rachel, I mean, you could feel the excitement exuding through his body. You could feel the love going from his voice to her, flowing to her."

In a letter that he wrote to her he talked about trying to be the best husband that he could be, and he tells her, "It seems my habits make you sometimes doubt me but there is no question in my mind that my marriage is the greatest thing that could have happened to me. All the other honors are really secondary and Darling someday I'll prove it. I hope it will be soon. I will do everything to prove it."

He credited her for much of his success, saying that she, "was the one person who really kept me from throwing up my hands in despair many times; she was my strongest support during these trials. . . She always had the wise suggestion, the comforting touch, the encouragement to go on which carried me through. . . I can truly say that my rise to baseball fame is mainly due to my wife."

Jackie and Rachel Robinson are role models. Not only for what they accomplished as breaking barriers in baseball, but for what they stood for as a couple. They exemplified true commitment, loyalty, respect and love. And, it's an example that is needed for many couples today.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Gentle Mothering

I have several goals for 2010, and one of the big ones is to strive to be the best mother that I can be. Of course, that has been one of my goals ever since I became a mother, but I really recognize glaring deficiencies in my mothering. The main thing that I wish I could exhibit more of: PATIENCE!!!

Prior to having children I thought that I was a pretty patient and nice person, but I was deceived. And, I want to change it. What started me down this path of self-reflection was watching, "18 Kids and Counting" the show about the Duggars. I started watching regularly a few months ago, and the show really ministered to me.

I was amazed watching Michelle Duggar deal so sweetly and gently with her children, and they all seem so well-mannered. I have never seen her raise her voice. She does not seem to lose her patience, and she has 18 (now 19) kids!! And, I only have 2!!! And, I cannot deal with my two children with the same patience and gentleness that she displays. And, I sooo want to.

I did read that she said that she stays in God's word daily, and that helps her to have patience and not raise her voice and not react in anger towards her children.

I am commited to saturating myself in God's word like I should so that I can bear the fruits of God's spirit in my life, and with the way that I deal with my children. I get exasperated often, I get frustrated often, I lose my patience often, and I feel like yelling at least twice everyday. I don't always do so, but I feel like it. And, I don't want it to be that way.

Being a mother just reminds me of how important it is to stay connected to God. When you try to do things in your own strength, you fail. Having a close relationship with Christ does produce more peace, joy, love and kindness inside of you, and you are able to pour those things out to others.

This year I am commited to cultivating a deeper relationship with Christ, and also being sure to raise my children with gentleness and love, but also being firm and consistent in my expectations and training.


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