Monday, January 30, 2012

My ladies...

So let's talk about the little ladies....
Oh they are just precious and growing like little weeds!!!

Let's start with Emma Kate:

Oh this little precious babe... she is growing like a little weed and just as precious as ever!  I stopped nursing last week.  I did a ugly, messy cry in the shower and moved forward.  I did my best and that is all I could do.  We went in for a wellness check up; she weighed in at 12.14 lbs. (25%) and in the 75% for her height.  Long and lean, have you met her daddy?



Her acid reflux is somewhat better.  We stopped the medication for 2 reasons.  1.  It was WAY too expensive.  2.  She puked the same as she did on or off.
She is FINALLY sleeping through the night.  We are 3 nights in of 12 hours of sleep... now if I can get use to it and stop going in there to make sure she is okay!
She smiles non stop and has so much to say!  I love her soft little voice and could listen to it all day!  When she smiles, she does it with her whole face and she puts her hands into her mouth... precious!  She has great head control and her hand-eye cordination is getting better everyday.  She can grab a paci from my hand and get it to get mouth area... not bad.  She is starting to try to roll over.

Annabelle:



What a great big sister!!  She is totally into the mommy thing right now.  She changes her lovey's diaper and nurses him all the time.  She also pushes him around in her play stroller.  She loves to play with my phone.  I have apps just for her and she knows how to get to it and play them... ahh, she is going to know more than me when she is in kindergarden!!  She currently knows where her toes, eyes, ears, hair, mouth, teeth, nose and hands are.  She is an AMAZING dancer and has a dance party on the table quit frequently.  She is always saying new words and knows what she is saying, there are a few that i have know clue what it is, but she does.
New words (I know what they are, but the random lady at the store would not understand her):

  • thirsty
  • hungry
  • blanket
  • movie
  • paci
She uses hungry and thirsty interchangeably and also uses them to stall or to get out of bed... grrrr!!

She weighs in at 24lbs (25%) and was in the 75% for height... haha!  And wears 12-18 month clothes.  She currently has her 4 front teeth, her top 2 molars.  Her bottom 2 front teeth and the 2 bottom molars.  She is teething and last time I got the courage to feel around in there, the tooth next to the front center was coming in.

We have all been super sick, so her appetite has been less than desirable lately... pray for us!  Both babes are on medication.

Enjoy!!

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Chosen... part 2

Hey ladies... I hope that you found some encouragement from my horrible rendition of the AWESOME conference that I went to.  I'm going to TRY to share more of what I learned.... so give me some grace, okay?  Okay.

So I talked about how I learned about not changing my men, right?  Well, here is what else I learned about marriage:


  • A wise women builds her home, and a wise man builds up his wife.  (dreams of fab date nights dance in my head!!)
  • You do not build a healthy marriage/ kids by accident
  • When you mess up in front of your kids, own it.  Apologize to them... ouch!
  • Don't use your strengths to point out each others weaknesses (let me spell conviction!)
  • What we justify, we buy.
  • What we don't forgive, we WILL repeat.
  • Marriage = Power union and produce life.
  • We expect our husbands to be Jesus... so not fair!
  • Build our kids with our words.
  • Man is anointed to give structure, women is anointed to give nurture.
  • Man guards the house, the women guards the hearts.
  • Satan will not attack the church itself, he will attack your marriage, parenting and all those super private things that you hide.
  • When a man finds a wife, he gets a treasure and finds favor with God.

My gracious... I don't even know where to start.  I have written about marriage and how hard it is... but with this charge, I feel like this is a life time of a list to work on!  I am thrilled with the charge that was given and hope for the future.  A reminder that I need to be praying for my husband daily.  To work on a healthy marriage, it's the only way that it will flourish.  To act like the treasure that I am.  To make it easier for Frank to be thankful for me.
I feel like our parenting has a purpose, direction.  To remember that we are eternally focused, to not just survive.  To pray over these little ladies, everyday.  To talk about Jesus and all that He has done for us, everyday.  To talk about the future with them and ask them questions.  Questions about their hopes and dreams.


Saturday, January 28, 2012

You are chosen... part one.

So last week my church held a women's conference called Chosen.  To say that it was amazing is an understatement!  The women that planned it, spoke and sold there things at the boutique did an OUTSTANDING job.  I can not wait for 2013!!  Each night when I got home, Frank would ask how it went and I just could not gather my thoughts to tell him.  I felt the Lord move in places in my heart that were just numb.

Can I tell you about it?  You should grab a cup of coffee... go!

The Lord just really encouraged my heart the whole 2 days.  There were women who had lots of little children that spoke and told funny stores about when their babes were little.  They told about how poor they were, and how they could barely pay the bills or would fight like cats and dogs with their husbands.  They talked about picking up your cross and telling others about him... at the playground or the lady at check out that you see each week.  It was encouraging me to know that I'm not the only momma out there that gets frustrated or ugly cries in the shower because of "x,y and z"

While the whole conference wasn't about "lets hold hands and talk about how hard life is", it was about arising in the Lord and stepping up to the calling that you have.  It was amazing to see these women from all over the country sharing in their journey to get to where they were and looking outward.  Not at themselves, but at the need and meeting it.

Lisa Brevere spoke on Thursday and Friday night and did a breakout session on Friday morning.  She shared some basics, but there were hard to swallow...

  • Be difined by who you are, not for what you are against.
  • Men and women are not against each other, but together.  Arise through letting men being men and women being women.
  • Train your children, not your man.
  • Be present and alert.
  • We are made to be free so we can be free in His freedom!
  • The Lord loves to make you face what you fear because it makes you fearless (insert ugly cry)
Lisa went on to talk about how we as women need to stop trying to train our husbands and let them be men.  We need to work on ourselves first and when we do that  and build our house, it will pull our men out of boyhood and into manhood.  They already have a momma, they don't need another one.  
She also talked abut how as women we are targets and the best way to get to our husbands is through the wife.  We need to be on constant guard because the enemy is constantly looking for ways to attack our life, marriage and family.
Women today are finally banning together and writing chapters on virtue and what can be done when we ban together for his kingdom.
She challenged us to get a mentor, to be a mentor and start encouraging each other.

So obviously she did a way better job, that is why she is paid the big bucks and speaks and writes books.

What I took away:
Step it up.  I am a chosen women!  Yes, I have a lot on my plate right now, but it was already written that this would happen.  I need to stop looking at myself and what I need, but rather looking at other women and seeing what they need and offering to assist.

My action plan:
Love on that hubby just a little more.  Love on these babes a little more.  Be on the look out for people who need some encouragement while we are out and about.  To get involved with a cause.  There are so many and it's really hard to not get caught up in the "a little here and a little there".  I want to pick one and stick to it.  All the resources into one pot.


Of course my babes got sick over the weekend so we have been home bound to get better.

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Monday, January 23, 2012

That shirt...

Do you have "that shirt"? It's the one that your favorite.  It's never in the drawer because it's always coming out of the dryer.  You would NEVER wear it in public because there are holes in the arms!

I do.  It's my long sleeve t-shirt from high school.  From FCA, fellowship of cristian athletes.  I laugh at it now.  There was nothing good coming from it, but I needed some things on my transcripts to make me look good.  Colleges didn't care about my drama at home, they cared about my grades and I was hoping that some clubs would make up for my lack of good grades.

When I got this shirt, about 12 years ago, it was so stiff and big.  Had you told me what I would be doing 12 years later in that shirt I would have freaked out!  I was going to be a lawyer or something super important with an office and work I had to do at home because I just could not get it all done during the day... haha!  I want to punch that Abbey in the face!

My white FCA shirt, it now has hot pink pain on it.  Bad relationship + a bad fight + a trip to lowes = hot pink bathroom.  I'm not kidding.  Me and my shirt broke up with that bad relationship.

I got married.  I think that my sweet husband had in mind what his future wife would wear to bed at night and it did not included a worn out t-shirt from high school.  He got over it He just makes fun of me now about what I wear to bed.

Now you ask, I just thew it in the laundry, I got puked on- again.  It is held onto, tight.  My babes cling to it as they are rocked, fed, burped or held as I walk around the house.  Annabelle "helps" fold it.  Dallas wants to lay on it.

I love this shirt.  It's so comforting.  I think that my kids don't mind the stains from the past.  They just know the softness of today.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Social media.

I'm fasting it and I haven't missed it, well maybe just a little.  But let me tell ya, I haven't missed seeing how "perfect" people's lives are on there!  Doesn't it seem like that?  That all of my closest 400+ friends have this perfect life, filled with marital bliss, perfect children that never get off schedule, their spiritual lives are just running over and cookies are baked for their whole neighborhood by 6am.  Seriously!  My friend was telling me about this article that she read, I couldn't find it, but it was talking about how people are killing themselves because they are so depressed, thinking that other people are perfect, based on Facebook.

I started to look through my Facebook and intragram posts... and I was portraying the same thing.  That we are this little perfect family that showers everyday and skips to church with our perfectly ironed clothes and everyone naps blissfully!  Oh that hurts me; let's get real for a second!  Emma Kate wasn't bathed for a few days because I forgot and I realized last night that she had baby funk going on (who admits that?!?), Annabelle was a flipping nightmare all day yesterday because i put her down too early for her afternoon nap and she woke up at 2:30 grouchy... you can imagine how the rest of the day went!  Or that sometimes there are days when I feel like Frank is my roommate rather than my husband.  Or sometimes my kids drive me nuts and I want to go back to work outside of the home.

My point is this, I'm sorry if you thought I have it together and we have this perfect little family with the perfect little marriage and perfect little children (this just made me laugh out loud!).  But we are not.  Shocker, I know!

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The old blog...

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Thanks for the love :)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Passy stealer....

There once was a little girl, named Annabelle.   She loved her lovey and passy more than anything.  She took them EVERYWHERE.  In fact, she loved that lovey so much that her grandmother bought 6 of the same loveys, just is case.  Sweet Annabelle had 4 lovey at her house/car and 2 in the safe at her grandparents house, along with all her aunties and momma's lovies (seriously, I'm not kidding).

There one was a little boy, named Holden.  He loved his passy just as much as Annabelle and only loved her lovies.  He would only want a lovey when he was riding next to her in the car.  One day, his momma took him to lovey heaven where they all live and are waiting for adoption.  Sweet Holden got HIS VERY OWN!  He was in love.

When Holden and Annabelle would play, Holden would steal Annabelle's passies.  She would not do anything about it because he was bigger and could walk and much faster than that sweet girl.  Thankfully, his momma would always stick up for Annabelle and take it out of his mouth and give it back OR her momma was prepared for such things and would whip out a new one.

One day, Annabelle started walking, then running.  It had been awhile since these two mommas got together, so they were shocked at how FINALLY the babes seemed the same age.  Annabelle had become more assertive with toys and more brave with passies!  Poor Holden finally got what was coming- he had his passy stolen.  He went and got another, that one was taken too!  When sweet Annabelle finally decided which one she liked better, she gave the other back to Holden.

Annabelle's momma tried not to laugh and tried to use this opportunity to teach about sharing.  It was hard because the two mommas were laughing so hard at this.  It is true, what goes around comes around.  Maybe we can try again soon about sharing and not taking each others passies!

Friday, January 13, 2012

The boob juice...

Nursing!  Ah, is everyone talking about it?  No?  Oh, it's just my friends, the ones that are procreating at a rapid rate {grin}.
Let me start of saying that this is hard, amen?  AMEN! 

With Annabelle, I thought I knew everything because I had read a few books (okay, I skimmed them) and you just put her on there, right?  Well it was a fiasco!  She would take FOREVER to nurse, mostly just making out with me (or my ta-ta) rather than getting that milk.  It was so frustrating and exhausting.  EXHAUSTING.  Then I got pregnant and it dried up, I was so confused and upset.  But I didn't know that I was pregnant yet.  I will never forget sitting on the bed just crying and Frank said to me it's time to stop.  I had so much resentment.  It was toward him for not "supporting me" (okay, he was supportive, I just had about 9 times of hormones running through me that I could not see straight or not not cry, all the time) and toward myself for not "trying hard enough".  No grace.  I later found out the reason my milk dried up.  Instant forgiveness.

Emma Kate, my sweet puker.  This is hard.  I drink water, I take medicine, I do this and that... my milk supply is dropping and I'm so frustrated.  My friend, Carrie, put me in touch with this lactation lady tonight and this is what I learned...

Oh the lies that our society tells us!!


  • You don't need a pump, it does more harm than good and you have to train your boobs to respond to a pump.  So ladies like myself who nurse, don't need a pump.  Pumps are great for working mothers or if you need to leave your babe for an extended period of time, etc.
  • They DO NOT represent what is really in there.  EVER.
  • Sometimes, you just need to nurse on demand to get your supply up.  She rocks out the attachment parenting style.  I agreed with most of what she said, but this momma needs to sleep.  Sleep deprived Abbey is a nightmare.  Frank said he would rather buy formula for the remaining 8 months than for me to be tired.  Ha.
  • "When in doubt, whip them out."
  • Nursing isn't just about food.  It's about connecting with your babe, nurturing them, spending that quality time with that little monster that ruined my cute figure that I once rocked!
  • Supplementing is a very slippery slope to get on.  We are on it and fighting tooth and nail, starting right now.
  • Turn that clock around and let them nurse as long as they want.  It's not about me right now, it's about them... buck up (my words, not hers!!)
So here is to tomorrow.  I will be nursing on demand all day.  Just for tomorrow, then we will worry about Saturday when it gets here.  And then Sunday.  Monday.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Distance...

I think that i have blogged about this...

Frank's family lives in Texas.  If you have ever met a Texan before, you know they will tell you they are one in about the first 3 minutes of the conversation.  I love going places with them when we are not in Texas... it makes me laugh!  But they live 17 hours away.  That is a REALLY long road trip with a big fight in the car around the Mississippi river.  It happens, no talking for 2 hours.  OR a really expensive plane ticket.  If you ever have around $250-$300 x2 laying around, send it our way, we want to go!!

Today I got an invite in the mail.  It was for my sister in love's bridal shower.  I cried.  It has never happened before, I couldn't go somewhere.  I need to be there.  I need to hold her hand and tell her how excited I am for her.  To see her face when she opens her cake stand from target.  I need it.  They have missed out on events here and it broke my heart, but to miss out- it pains me.  I hate that I'm already missing the wedding planning.  I want to help her and all her bridesmaids are so young, they don't know what to do or are just lazy... she needs me!  At least, I think she needs me { :) }

I'm sorry Katie... I won't be there, but that cake stand will be waiting for you and it will be awesome!  Don't eat too much cake, it still  counts... even at your party!  I love you, future Mrs. Cotton.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Goals...

It's the new year... well, 9 days into the new year and everyone is talking about their "new year's resolutions".  I hate them.  I use to do them.  I lasted a week, okay maybe the first weekend of the new year.  Lose more weight, swear less, more time with Jesus, be a better (fill in relationship status), give more... you get the point.  We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to be super skinny, over committed and super sleep deprived because of the said things above.  So what is the point, Abbey?
My point is this, this is my new year.  My year of no more babes, to feel more like the mom rather than the nanny and the maid, to be a better wife.  And by that, I mean make sure I give my husband some affection, any affection more than once when he gets home or a passing hug in the kitchen (don't judge me, you struggle with it too!!).  I want to get this body looking somewhat decent for this summer.  Lord knows our summers here are from late March to early November, oh wait, it's mid january and it's in the 70's- who am I kidding?!?
So here is the game plan... Our church kicked off a fast today (or last night at sun down, however you chose to do it).  Some are doing the daniel fast, some are doing other things.  This is what I am doing:

  • Getting up before the kiddo's to start my day, rather than jump into it with the first cry.
  • Have some alone time with said morning.
  • Fasting all media; including Facebook, twitter, pinterest and intragram.  All notifications got turned off last night.
  • Pray intentionally for some sweet friends, my family and marriage.  Some are general prayers, some are really BOLD and some are super scary.
  • Do a progressive work out everyday of sit-ups and lunges.  It doesn't matter how skinny or thick those legs are or how flat that tummy may or may not be, jiggle is jiggle.  Right?  Right!
*Side note, I started last night and it literally took all I had to do 6 sit ups!  Frank was in my face coaching me and cheering me along.  It was bad, ya'll.  BAD!  Oh the mess of a body I have after 2 babes in one year!


Thursday, January 5, 2012

A good story...

So let me tell you a story, a good story.


My last post, I had said that we were going to buy this really cute house.  It didn't start out cute.  In fact, that super hot day when all the bugs in South Carolina were on Maxville Rd, we were there also, looking at this really gross crack house.  But we saw the vision, we bought into it.  We started to pray about this house.  We prayed that the Lord would open this door or close it.  That we would honor Him.  That is house would honor Him.  We prayed that if it was "no" to give us a sign, make it a clear one.  The time line was 6 weeks, 8 to be on the safe side.


Don't you hate how hindsight is always 20/20?  I do.  I find it annoying.  Very a.n.n.o.y.i.n.g.


They said that for our price, we would get carpet and linoleum.  Not hard woods and tile.  No garbage disposal.  Other things that we wanted were a no go but were okay with for now.  We chalked it up to business.  Then came the big things... 
The termites.  First inspection, the guy said "run".  The second opinion said it was fine, just needed some work.
Then there was the sub flooring, or lack of.  Where they moved a wall, they didn't finish the sub flooring to make it flesh with the other sub flooring.  
The soft spot in front of the back door.
And the list goes on.....

Are you getting my point?  Are we not blind?  Thinking back on it, I would smack myself, or punch my pregnant self!  Every time that something would come up or wasn't done right or ANOTHER delay, we would pray about it and say, oh it's just character development!  
So finally in the last hour and still no peace about the house, the Lord slammed the door shut.  I mean SHUT!
As all of this was going down, I freaked out.  I mean freaked out!  Our sweet friend had let us come and stay with her in her beautiful home.  It was suppose to be a week or two... 5 weeks later and still no closing date for us.  She was about to close in 4 days, we needed to be out in 2.  We still didn't have the CO for the house, let alone a closing date and then we found out from the bank that there was no way this was going to happen.  I could picture us sleeping in the van... I'm not kidding!

I threw the girls in the stroller to go and walk... okay, to go in the field/ new phase that has not broken ground behind where we were living and YELL at the Lord.  To say that I was mad at HIM was an understatement.  And I was going to tell Him why.  
Why did he make it VERY clear, at least we thought He did, that He wanted us back in Charleston.  To leave family, a job and our never ending church search?  Why did He "open" this door for us to buy a home and waste all this money to just shut it at the last minute with the HUGE threat of being homeless (okay not really, but in the moment of panic I was seriously thinking that we were.  Our friends begged to differ).  Why?  We have two small babes, one of which does terrible with change and the momma is worst!  I found myself praying out loud, then yelling, then almost screaming, WHY, WHY, WHY?

And then something happened, that never happens.  At least not to me.  I literally felt the Lord speak to me.  He said, "Abbey, my little sinner child that is so blind, I have been here the whole time.  I have given you signs over and over.  You didn't listen.  I tried to give you wise counsel.  Several different people in fact.  You didn't listen to them either.  You know that peace that I give you now and then?  You know why you never had it about this home?  This is why.  It's a no.  You really should listen after you pray for things, I do hear you!  Those 2 little babes that you pray about all the time and I gave you, I made them, remember?  I will protect them and you.  I have never once left you, let you be hungry or cold.  Hot, yes, but that's your fault.  Do you remember that?"

Insert ugly crying all the way home.  With jeggings on and dansko's and my husbands white tube socks.  I was a mess, it was ugly.  I had to tell Frank when he got home.  He wasn't freaking out.  He was calm.  I needed him to be calm.  I was still ugly crying.  
The cry was several parts:
1.  Repentance for the disobedience.
2.  Relief.  I never had a peace about that home.
3.  Remorse.  I knew I had screwed up.  And it was an expensive lesson to learn.  Ouch.

The story ends with redemption.  We found a cute house in park circle.  We have great neighbors and we have claimed this house, the house of healing.  Financial healing.  Family healing.  And we are ready for 2012 and all the joy and pain that is going to come.  Bring it on!

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