Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Monday I had a midwife appointment. I am now 28 weeks along, only 12 weeks left to go! Well, give or take a few, depending on whether or not the baby is early or late :-)
While chatting with the midwife I asked if there was anything I could do to help myself better remember things. She burst out into pleasant laughter, "Placenta-brain!" she said "No, there's nothing you can take for that!" So, at least I have a diagnosis, it's not simply "I'm going crazy!"  :-)
Entering the 7th month was like running into a brick wall, all the sudden I went from feeling good to feeling tired, almost all the time and to having the most terrible time trying to remember anything! I have been very blessed most of the pregnancy. Although I had to deal with nausea, I didn't experience terrible mood swings, unbearable exhaustion, or anything like that. I think I've had 2 or 3 emotional instances since entering the 3rd trimester. Thankfully, I have an incredibly compassionate husband :-) Even though he doesn't quite understand the "it's nothing you've done, nothing you haven't done, nothing I can think of is wrong I just feel miserable" bursting into to tears, he's been good just to hold me and let me cry.
Enough cons, the pros of being in my 3rd trimester far outweigh them! The baby is now happily kicking my ribs, but still not big enough for it to hurt, so I am enjoying the continual reminder that there is a little life growing in my womb.  The heart beat is holding good and strong, it's a fast heart beat and there is an old wives tale saying that a fast heart beat indicates it's a girl. . . we'll see :-) Jon and I are looking forward to holding our little one and we are both confident that it truly won't be long-time is just flying by so quickly!

Interesting tid bit from a book I borrowed from the midwives, called "The Birth Book" by William and Martha Sears. Did you know that according to childbirth historians when women began transitioning from home births to hospital births the maternal death rate from childbed fever went up? Why, you ask? Because at that time the now standard procedure of handwashing wasn't  practiced by doctors, one can only imagine what kind of germs were spread that way! Interesting, isn't it?



I have been reading in Ezra for my daily devotions the last little while and yesterday I read something I thought I would share. In chapter 9 the Princes of Israel come to Ezra and inform him that the people have sinned by taking foreign wives. When Ezra hears the news he is overwhelmed and after rending his garment and plucking out his hair in grief, he sits before the Lord all day in astonishment. At the time of the evening sacrifice he falls before God and begins an intercessory prayer of confession. After a time a man by the name of Shechaniah comes to him, confessing the sins of the people and declaring that they are ready to put away their wives according to the law. Verse 4 stood out to me, "Arise; for this matter belongeth unto thee: we also will be with thee, be of good courage and do it." As the spiritual leader (Ezra 7:1-5 he traces his line to Aaron) it is his responsibility to begin the work, Shechaniah recognizes this and exhorts him to undertake it. But he also states his support of Ezra and his promise to stand behind him and help with the work. When I, as a wife, see an area of responsibility that God has given my husband that perhaps is overwhelming or that he is lacking in, the proper response is not to try and wrest that leadership from him but to say "I will stand with you, be of good courage and do it". The response should be one of unconditional respect, love and support, laboring with him in the work.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

How Many Ways Can You Cook a Potato?

Spring seems to fnally have arrived! Although I guess were supposed to have some cooler weather the beginning of next week it's still warmer than winter, the sun stays up longer in the evenings, the birds are singing merrily and we've begun to transition to our outside work. Thursday, after supper, Jon and I went out and dug some spots for flower beds, gave them a good layer of goat manure, replaced the dirt and happily admired our work and the beautiful sunset. Friday, Jonathan set out for the field with a plastic lifter for the black plastic "mulch" we use to help keep weeds down. I brough him lunch around 12 and then spent some time working with him. By the time he was home for supper he was covered head to foot with a good layer of dirt-but he was one happy man to be labouring outdoors again :-)

What does all this have to do with cooking potatoes? Not much, actually this post has precious little to do with actually 'cooking potatoes' but rather it concerns something I have been seeking to better understand and apply: living frugally.

My dad often stressed to me the importance of realizing that my financial standard of living would probably change when I married. After all, by the time I married, Dad had been in the work force for 30 years whereas my husband had only been working full time for 2 years. Because I was aware of this ahead of time and because I hadn't really developed any bad spending habits I thought I was well prepared for living on a tight budget. In many ways I was, but I still spent a lot of time pondering the question, "How do I wisely manage the resources God has given us?" I borrowed books from friends and family, racked my brain for lessons I had learned from my mom, tried to learn from the stories Jon told me about his mother making do when he was growing up, and chatted with my man about what was important to him in regards to finances, as well as begging the Lord for wisdom on how to make due with what we had while wondering what I was going to do about clothing as the pregnancy progressed. Often my reading proved to be frustrating as there was all kinds of recommendations on how to save money that I already knew/practiced : Don't go out to eat often-not a problem, we have been out to eat four times in 7 months of marriage and I've gotten 1 coffee, and frankly, neither of us were dying to eat out anyway. Shop at thrift stores - already doing that and I grocery shop at a major discount food store. Hang  your laundry to dry in order to save on your electric bill - electric is included in our rent and I hang my clothes anyway. And so on and so forth. In the end I came to the following conclusion: while it is important to learn self-control in spending, wisdom in purchases, how to live with less, etc I am convinced that one of the main elements of frugal living is trust.

Trust God. Believe that He is faithful to His promise to provide for our needs (Matt. 6:25-32) And secondly, obey. He tells us to "seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness;" and then promises that, "all these things will be added unto (us)" Matt. 6:33. So, I sat down and made a list of all the things that God has provided for us and frankly I was blown away by how much He has not only met our needs but gone even beyond that. He has truly taken care of us. In my journal I made a note: "practical application #1: Seek first the kingdom and trust in God's provision". I truly believe that even if you are very careful tracking your money and you are discerning with your purchases, if you aren't trusting God for His provision of your needs, you're going to be miserable always worrying about how you are going to make it work tomorrow or next month.

So, why does the title include potatoes? If you really want to know, it's because one of our staples right now is potatoes and as you can probably imagine, I am trying to be creative with how many different ways I can serve potatoes and still have an appetizing dish :-)

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Yogurt Making

Ealier this week I made yogurt, over Monday/Tuesday. I have been wanting to do that for a while, so I was very thankful I was able to get it done. Homemade yogurt is delicious, with a nice tangy flavor, it's also very good for your digestive health as it is full of nutrious probiotics. If you've never had it before you don't know what you are missing :-)

Yogurt is not hard to make, it's time consuming, but not really labor intensive, it does most of the work itself.

"Behold that which I have seen: it is good and comely for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labour that he taketh under the sun all the days of his life, which God giveth him: for it is his portion."
Ecc. 5:18