Posts Tagged ‘Mothering’

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Prayer For The Week if May 2 — Pondering In My Heart

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Jesus, Change Our Hearts To Bear Good Fruit

We have really gotten behind in our prayer posts. We had a good run–about four years of faithful Monday morning prayer posts. And then life really got crazy and we just couldn’t keep up the writing schedule. But, we have missed you all. And so, we are picking up the prayer posts again.

I have several swirling thoughts this morning that all have the same theme, but came from different places.  First of all, my kids and I can’t stop singing this song from Rain For Roots:

And that got me really meditating on what thoughts I allow my heart to grow. What grows in the heart, goes to the mouth. What comes out of the mouth, started in the heart.

“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” Psalms 19:14

“Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.” Proverbs 4:23

Thinking about these things, I remembered that Mary “kept all these things pondering in her heart.” (Luke 2:19)

Being a homemaker can be isolating in some ways. We can be busy, busy, busy all day with kids and housework and gardens. And our hearts and minds can be running in the background while we are unaware. Like a computer that starts to malfunction because of programs running in the background.  What’s running in the background can often go unchecked. Unintentionally we can be thinking about things that are going wrong, worries about money or our marriages or how our kids are turning out, discontentment, unforgiveness, grief. All running in the background.

What if we could reprogram our operating systems to run gratefulness, joy, appreciation, shalom in the background. Can we rewire ourselves to think on things that are lovely and pure and holy and praiseworthy?

It is my prayer today that I can. Jesus, change our hearts to bear good fruit.

Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Philippians 4:8

Jesus, Change Our Hearts To Bear Good Fruit

We have really gotten behind in our prayer posts. We had a good run–about four years of faithful Monday morning prayer posts. And then life really got crazy and we just couldn’t keep up the writing schedule. But, we have missed you all. And so, we are picking up the prayer posts again. I have […]

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Banish Boredom This Winter!

Blog | Raising Arrows 3 Comments

[This post may contain Amazon affiliate links. The Provision Room is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.]

Banish boredom this winter!

Although we didn’t get a white Christmas, winter finally arrived in Maine. It’s beautiful and I love it. Outside looks all magical and wonderlandish. Inside there is a toasty fire, copious amounts of tea, and baked goods galore.  It’s not without its challenges, though. My big boys are learning the joys of shoveling the driveway and getting outside in the negative temps to tend to the farm animals. My husband is working on the outside of the house wearing about 101 layers of clothing. And I am trying to figure out how to entertain the Littles when it is too cold to send them outside all day.  Of course they want to watch TV and we do let them. But, we don’t want to make a crazy habit out of it. Although it may be too late for that. As evidenced by my two year old saying, “Mom, can I watch Wild Kratts all day long? Dad said yes.” Dad most assuredly did not say yes. #honestpostpartum

Of course, every day there are books to read, pages to color, legos and blocks, etc. But sometimes Mom has got to get a little creative. Winter is long and we’ve just gotten started.

So, when the cabin fever sets in here are some fun ideas: Read More

Banish boredom this winter!

[This post may contain Amazon affiliate links. The Provision Room is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.] Although we didn’t get a white Christmas, winter finally arrived in Maine. It’s beautiful and […]

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Do you love a good birth story?

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Premature Rupture of Membranes: Complication or Variation of Normal?

I was 37 weeks along. It was the day after Thanksgiving. I was on a decent Netflix binge, laying there in bed, totally vegging out. Out of nowhere: POP! Trickle. GUSH! My water broke.  This wouldn’t have necessarily been a cause for concern, except that I had recently moved to rural Maine and my midwife and mother were to fly in from the West Coast for the birth. This turn of events was four days too early.

Contractions started mildly, more like Braxton-Hicks. Nevertheless, we got ready to catch this baby on our own.  Night turned to morning.  Morning turned to night. Night turned to morning.  Contractions would come-and-go. Sometimes strong. Sometimes so mild I could sleep through them.  This wasn’t what anyone would call “active labor.”

My mother and my midwife arrived and I was still  pregnant.  To make a long story short, our baby made his grand entrance 6 days after my water broke.

READ THE REST ON MODERN ALTERNATIVE PREGNANCY!

Premature Rupture of Membranes. It happens.

Read tips for staying healthy and safe if your water breaks and you don’t go into labor right away. What warning signs should you look for?  How did we finally get labor jumpstarted? And did we have our planned home birth? Read all the details on Modern Alternative Pregnancy!

Premature Rupture of Membranes: Complication or Variation of Normal?

I was 37 weeks along. It was the day after Thanksgiving. I was on a decent Netflix binge, laying there in bed, totally vegging out. Out of nowhere: POP! Trickle. GUSH! My water broke.  This wouldn’t have necessarily been a cause for concern, except that I had recently moved to rural Maine and my midwife […]

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Prayer for week of January 4 — It’s the little moments

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[This post may contain Amazon affiliate links. The Provision Room is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.]

Ever have great intentions of having quality time with the Lord? You’re gonna read the whole Bible this year or have an hour of prayer time a day.  You’re gonna make it to extra church services or spend time with amazing journaling prompts. And then…..life.  Life that eeeeeeks away at your time. You wake up in the morning, you blink, and then it’s 8pm and you’re putting the kids in bed. The whole day gone.  It was just one big blur of housekeeping, bill-paying, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and settling sibling fights. Oy.

tiny moments with Jesus Read More

tiny moments with Jesus

[This post may contain Amazon affiliate links. The Provision Room is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.] Ever have great intentions of having quality time with the Lord? You’re gonna read the […]

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Those who wait

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On November 27 I was calming laying in bed, with my big pregnant belly, on a Netflix binge. It was relaxing and chill. Suddenly everything changed. I felt a pop and then a drizzle that turned into a gush. My water broke.

Soon contractions started coming. My husband and daughter tidied up the room and arranged the birth supplies.

And then we waited…..

Night turned to morning.

And we waited….

Morning turned to night.

And we waited….

Night turned to morning.

And we waited….

Waiting

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Those Who Wait

On November 27 I was calming laying in bed, with my big pregnant belly, on a Netflix binge. It was relaxing and chill. Suddenly everything changed. I felt a pop and then a drizzle that turned into a gush. My water broke. Soon contractions started coming. My husband and daughter tidied up the room and […]

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Powerful Pregnancy (Leg cramps, restlessness, and morning sickness)

Blog | Raising Arrows 9 Comments

{This post contains affiliate links. Clicking on or purchasing through affiliate links doesn’t cost you nothing, but a small commission goes to support this blog and the families who love to write it.}

I put an app on my phone so that the kids could track my pregnancy and the baby’s development. I had a hunch it would drive me crazy and occasionally angry. And it has. Every week I get the updates of how big the baby is and what organ is developing at that stage of gestation.  But then there is the section on what to expect.  It sort of goes like this, “This week in your pregnancy you will discover that your body hates you. You will be vomiting, cramping and bitchy. And the best news is there is nothing you can do help yourself feel better. Have a happy pregnancy!”

This is not my experience.  You see, I firmly believe that the fact that I conceived life, am carrying that life, can birth that life and then sustain that life through my breasts is a sign of my health and not a sign of disease. Pregnancy is not a sickness to be managed or cured. It is a powerful force of femininity. It is a reminder–every single day for 40+ weeks–that Satan was defeated through an act of femininity, an act of motherhood. **drop mic**

Pregnancy is powerful, ladies!  What our bodies are capable of is incredible! Mighty! Beautiful! And yes, it is challenging!  But, it does not have to be miserable!  Can we try to keep in mind that Jesus reversed the curse on the cross! Your husband doesn’t have to loathe going to work by the sweat of his brow every day, being tortured by the misery.  You don’t have to dread bringing forth new life by the sweat of your brow, drowning in misery. #rantover

After chatting it up on Facebook and Instagram with other expecting mommies, we decided to do a series of posts on common pregnancy complaints/symptoms and how to respond to them.  Let’s call it POWERFUL PREGNANCY!

Powerful Pregnancy

This is my belly in my 8th pregnancy. Photo credit: Cory Plowman Photography

{Here is where I insert the disclaimer. I am not a doctor. Not a midwife. Don’t play one on TV.  I am a childbirth educator and doula, but that is hardly an authority figure in your life. So, use your common sense. Nothing in this article or on this website is a substitute for professional medical advice and it is not the intent of Daja or Kristina to advise about your particular situation or health condition. Do your own research and own your own choices. You’re a grown-up.}

Let’s talk about three things I think can all have the same root cause: Leg cramps, restlessness, and morning sickness.

That right there is a trifecta of misery.  If you have ever been pistol whipped awake in the dead of night by one of your muscles cramping like no one’s business, you know what pain is.  And that constant restlessness, especially of the legs, that can keep you awake all night is horrible. And let’s not forget morning sickness, which is a serious misnomer.  It’s not morning, often. It’s morning, afternoon, evening and nighttime sickness. Icky.

These three things, although they manifest very differently, often have the same root cause: Magnesium deficiency.

According to the Journal of the American College of Nutrition 68% of people suffer from magnesium deficiency.  There are over 300 biological functions that depend on magnesium.  So, it’s not something you can really afford to ignore–whether you’re pregnant or not!

Real Food Sources of Magnesium

  • Dark leafy greens (such as kale, chard, spinach)
  • Nuts and seeds (soaked and sprouted when possible!)
  • Avocado
  • Fish (are you wary about eating too much fish because of contaminants? Nourishing Our Children knocks that question out of the park with a well-sourced and excellent article. Read it here and the follow-up article here.)
  • Bone broth (from the bones of sustainably raised animals)
  • Bananas
  • Raw Dairy

Why are so many people deficient in magnesium, even if they eat a whole food “healthy” diet? The short answer is that our soil is depleted of many essential nutrients–magnesium among them–due to our industrial model of growing food. *cue very sad sigh*

Our human ancestors evolved in a world in which healthy drinking water came directly from streams, rivers, and lakes, rich in mineral content. The human body became reliant on obtaining a considerable proportion of its daily mineral needs from natural water sources.

Fast-forward to the twenty-first century. We obtain drinking water from a spigot or a plastic bottle. Pesticides and other chemicals seeping into the water supply have made everyone suspicious of water quality. As a result, municipal water-purification facilities have intensified their efforts to remove contaminants like lead, pesticide residues, and nitrates from drinking water. Unfortunately, these modern water-treatment methods also deplete drinking water of desirable minerals like calcium and magnesium.

Exacerbating this problem is that many Americans, distrustful of the purity and safety of municipally treated water, have added home water filters and purifiers that efficiently extract any remaining minerals from the water, thus converting “hard” into “soft” water. In fact, the manufacturers of these devices boast of their power to yield water free of “contaminants”—including minerals like magnesium. Thus, the magnesium content of the water that passes through most commercial filters is zero. (Source)

So, if a magnesium deficiency is at the root of the cramps, restlessness, and morning sickness and it’s difficult to get enough from the average diet, what is a pregnant mom to do?!  Here are some of the simple things we have used to address this concern and to have a happy pregnancy:

1. BONE BROTH

Back on that soap box, are we?!

Yep!  My own personal experience has convinced me of the effectiveness of a daily bone broth regiment.  You can read all about that on our post about bone broth.  Use the highest quality bones you can find.  Ask your local meat market or farmer’s market about grass-fed, pastured, free-range, and organic meats.

2. Raw Milk

Wait?! You drink raw milk while you’re pregnant?!

You better believe it!  In fact, we are not at all convinced about the safety of conventional milk purchased in the average grocery store.  But, we do trust raw organic pastured milk for local farms. Farms we can visit, check out, and we can look our farmers in the eye!  That’s the kind of accountability we like in our food system. (Chris Kresser does an excellent job of breaking down the raw milk question in a series of posts called Raw Milk Reality.)

3. Epsom Salt Soaks

Your skin is your largest organ and is like a huge sponge! It can absorb so much! (Which is one reason we should be cautious about what we put on our skin. Think about the ingredients in your shampoo, perfumes, make-up, etc.)  Especially in the first trimester of pregnancy when the queasy can set in, I take at least one (sometimes more) long Epsom Salt soak every day.  I put a couple cups of Epsom Salts in the tub and about as much water as I can to cover my growing belly.  Soak for about 30 minutes so that the mineral has a chance to really absorb. Use this time to relax and restore and for some positive meditations about your pregnancy and prayer time or Scripture memory.  Do not use this time to shave your legs or mess around on your phone or iPod.  Seriously, people. Seriously.

Don’t have a bathtub? Move. Just kidding. Try a daily foot soak!  This is also a very effective way to absorb magnesium and to pamper yourself!

4. Supplementation

There are a lot of supplements on the market. Unfortunately, if you don’t use them properly they just create expensive pee.  For example, magnesium must be in balance with other nutrients (mostly calcium and vitamin D) in order for you to absorb and utilize it.  When my students ask for a recommendation for a calcium supplement, I always recommend one that has a 2:1 ratio Calcium to Magnesium.  In addition to that, make sure you are taking in enough natural vitamin D–either from the sun or a safe source of fish oil. We like fermented cod liver oil.  (Concerned about the recent hullabaloo about fermented cod liver oil? We aren’t. We still take it every day. Read the Westin A. Price Foundations statement on FCLO here.)


Have a joyful and blessed pregnancy!  And leave us a comment with one of your pregnancy symptoms you’d like us to address!  Or tell us your best remedy for leg cramps, restlessness and morning sickness!

Lord Jesus, I lovingly pray for this sweet hope
that I keep within my womb.
You have granted me the immense gift
of a tiny little life,
living in my own life,
and I humbly thank you for choosing me
as an instrument of your love.
In this sweet waiting,
help me to live in a constant attitude
of self-surrender to your will.

Grant me a motherly heart that is pure,
steadfast and generous.
I hand over to you my own concerns;
any anxious fears that may come,
my own wishes for the little person
that I still have no knowledge of.
Grant that it may be born healthy in body,
keep far from it every peril to its soul.

Mary, you have known
the ineffable joy of a holy motherhood;
give me a heart that can transmit an ardent, living faith.
Sanctify my waiting,
bless this joyful hope that is in me,
grant that the fruit of my womb
may open out in virtue
and in holiness through your working
with that of your divine Son.

Amen

(source)

Powerful Pregnancy

{This post contains affiliate links. Clicking on or purchasing through affiliate links doesn’t cost you nothing, but a small commission goes to support this blog and the families who love to write it.} I put an app on my phone so that the kids could track my pregnancy and the baby’s development. I had a […]

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Prayer for the Week of August 24 — Nothing Is Far From God

Prayer Closet | Raising Arrows 1 Comment

This mothering gig is not easy.  When they are little we are worried about everything from a mysterious rash to giant grapes. We consult the books and the doctor and WebMD for everything from “Should we vaccinate?” to “When can I give her honey?”

When they get a little older we worry about whether we should let them go into the public restroom by themselves and how to approach bad attitudes.

Then they get a little older and we worry about the company they keep, the books they read, and the apps on their phones.

As tough as we thought those early days were, the game keeps getting upped.  Thankfully, for each new trial or challenge, there is new grace.  I don’t know any perfect parents, but I know a lot of good ones. Mothers and fathers who spend time on their knees for their children, who make intentional choices when it comes to discipline and education and health care, who sacrifice and daily lay down their lives. Read More

St. Monica, Nothing Is Far From God

This mothering gig is not easy.  When they are little we are worried about everything from a mysterious rash to giant grapes. We consult the books and the doctor and WebMD for everything from “Should we vaccinate?” to “When can I give her honey?” When they get a little older we worry about whether we […]

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Back To School Like A Boss

Raising Arrows | Relationships No Comments

Whether your kids go to school or whether they “do school” (you know, only homeschoolers say “do school”) this time of year is sort of exciting and stressful and makes you want to order a pumpkin spice latte to drink while perusing school supplies. I love me some new school supplies. Nothing says happiness like un-cracked composition books and boxes of brand new pencils. Just breathe it in! That’s the smell of education, baby! Read More

Back To School

Whether your kids go to school or whether they “do school” (you know, only homeschoolers say “do school”) this time of year is sort of exciting and stressful and makes you want to order a pumpkin spice latte to drink while perusing school supplies. I love me some new school supplies. Nothing says happiness like […]

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World Breastfeeding Week!

Blog | Raising Arrows 1 Comment

Today begins World Breastfeeding Week! We are big fans of breastfeeding. You know, because we are human and all.  (Sort of like saying, “World Oxygen Week. We are big fans of breathing!”)

How big a fan, you ask? Let’s see….I have been breastfeeding for over 14 years…..straight.   Read More

Breastfeeding

Today begins World Breastfeeding Week! We are big fans of breastfeeding. You know, because we are human and all.  (Sort of like saying, “World Oxygen Week. We are big fans of breathing!”) How big a fan, you ask? Let’s see….I have been breastfeeding for over 14 years…..straight.  

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Prayer for week of July 6 — Finding Jesus

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Every Monday Kristina and I have been connecting via Skype and praying the Joyful Mysteries.  We offer our prayer time mostly for our husbands and children.  In the fifth mystery, we meditate on Mary and Joseph finding Jesus in the temple. Read More

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Every Monday Kristina and I have been connecting via Skype and praying the Joyful Mysteries.  We offer our prayer time mostly for our husbands and children.  In the fifth mystery, we meditate on Mary and Joseph finding Jesus in the temple.