Viewing category: Pregnancy

Happy Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day should be once a month, in case anyone wants to know what I think on the matter. Bi-weekly preferable.   We are going to spend the day tomorrow on the boat on a little island just off the coast. Hoping for some relaxing, resting, peace (and calm seas).  Aunt Britty and her crew will join us as our mama is away for a bit.

Here is to a wonderful and happy mother’s day to the amazing mama’s in my life.





Looking back via grateful simplicity



Reasons to Celebrate via grateful simplicity


Welcome to the World, Catie T yler

happy birthday to you via grateful simplicity


Goodbye, #GrowingUpOnGlenmoreDrive


happy birthday to you via grateful simplicity


Over the river and through the woods via grateful simplicity

Claire Ellen via grateful simplicity




Michael Raynes | Happy Birthday {24 Months}

This post is day 17 of a 31 days series on finding Joy Simply. You can read all the posts from the series by clicking HERE.

Happy 2nd birthday to our no-longer a baby, sweet un-Ginger, little Raynes. It has been two years since you were born.  You are the exclamation point to our family.

Height:  35 1/2″  (80%)
Weight: 28.4 lbs (50%)
Head Circumference: 50.4 cm (65%)

Alas, this will be the last of your monthly updates. Your Mama has kept it up for the past 23 months beginning when you were one month old. Now you will be flying so fast I will be hard pressed to keep up.

I can only hope that you will one day eat more like a bear, and less like a bird.

And continue to learn how to make friends but more importantly be a friend.

This, however, I can honestly say I won’t miss.  Seriously?

You are sweet to the core, little boy.  God’s plans, once again, far surpassed my own.  Why am I not surprised?
A blurry family photo…. fitting really.

Springtime in January

We’ve had some crazy winter weather lately. To the tune of shorts, flip flops and air conditioning. I think my Japanese Magnolia may be a little confused as well. The flowers have started to bloom- in January!
When I became pregnant with Britton, at what now seems like a really young age of 25, it was pretty easy on my body. Gain a little weight, have baby showers (yes, that would be in  the embarrassing plural form), deliver a healthy baby, and then promptly loose the baby weight. Ta da! That’s how it done, I thought.  And yes, for many that is more or less how it goes. That wasn’t the case with subsequent pregnancies.
My sweet friends, Andrea and Erikka, gave me this Japanese Magnolia tree to plant after our second loss. And it was indeed a loss.
Thought it might not hurt as bad the second time. But it did.
So deep at the time I didn’t feel like I would ever recover. But I did.
I love how the bare branches grow tiny little pink buds. Those little pink buds morph into gorgeous fuchsia and white flowers. I don’t think about it very much anymore, preferring to focus on my blessings. But this little tree is here as a reminder. I find that comforting.  Thank you dear friends for my tree; you have no idea how special it is to me.

“Out of these ashes beauty will rise.”

Having Kids Far Apart in Age

The topic of the age gap of my children has weighed heavily on my mind recently. Particularly when I am constantly saying things like… in a minute, you can do it yourself, it’ll have to wait, no time tonight, shhh the baby is asleep, get dressed yourself, don’t have time for pancakes today- pick a cereal, can you help me with the baby, hurry up and so on. I love THIS MOM’S outlook on having children spaced out…

* Note: The below excerpt was taken from the blog Memories on Clover Lane- link above….
I’ve read your blog for some time now and have never left a comment. Today hit home!! I am three months pregnant with number 4 – not quite planned. :) My biggest worry is that I’m 34, and my kids are 7,9,and 11! I haven’t even told my girls that I’m pregnant yet. Can you post a blog just for me telling me how wonderful it is and that you’re not losing your mind? We know what a blessing it is, but we’re having a hard time with how different our lives will be!!    Tammy -Birmingham, AL

“Thank you for reading my blog. And thank you for “making” me write this post. Sometimes I get melancholy for the younger days…the kids being younger and maybe me too? Kind of selfish and vain. Sometimes it gets the best of me. Congratulations on your pregnancy! You will NOT lose your mind. Babies are awesome. And it goes so fast. You probably already know that.

You will enjoy this baby SO much. But, you will not be sitting in a rocking chair in a quiet room, looking like a Pottery Barn Kids ad. Instead, depending on the demeanor of your baby, you will either be constantly wearing an extra appendange on your body in form of a baby-filled sling, or be adding C batteries to your grocery list every week for your Graco swing.

You will not be pondering over what a cute outfit to dress the baby in today, instead you will be grabbing what is clean from the laundry basket. As that baby gets older, you will not be sitting on the floor for hours watching him or her stack blocks and thinking ‘what a genius’. They will explore their world without someone constantly breathing down their back, which turns out to be a better way anyways.

You will have to relearn some things. I had completely forgotten how impossible it is to give an infant a bath and of course, you will have a whole new set of instructions from the nurses on umbilical cord care. They apparently change that every year or so. The immunizations are all different too…like they added 75 more. But you are 34. You are not afraid to speak your mind. Take advantage of your confidence. You earned it.

You might not feel like there is enough hours in the day to get all that you need finished. Although you will reassure your kids that there is enough love to go all around, as you lay in bed at night, (usually with a baby attached to you), you will tear up, because you will feel like maybe there is, in fact, not enough love to pass around. You will think of who you didn’t hug today, or if you said anything but ‘Don’t do this, Do that, Can you please’.
It will eat you up sometimes, usually when you are going on 4 hours of broken sleep. Your mind can play tricks on you and anxiety will fill in the empty spots. Don’t do that to yourself. That friend I talked about yesterday? I asked her once, when she was adopting her seventh, if she ever felt like she didn’t have enough to go around. And she said, “I concentrate on what I DO give my kids, not on what I don’t.” Good advice. Take it. Full tummies, warm bed. Start there.
You will have some harried moments, but remember those moments…sometimes there will be nothing you can do about them, and other times you will have to think, “What can I do to change this…it’s not working for us.
I remember once complaining and complaining about this travel soccer I had my daughter in. Her friends would convince her every year to try out and then she’d beg me to let her. My husband always thought it was a good idea, too, as she was pretty decent at it. But it was ME who had to drag all these kids around, nursing the baby in the middle of a cornfield in the hot sun, not watching a minute of anything, being crabby all the way there and back, all of us hungry and thirsty, the baby fussy. It ended up my daughter didn’t really like soccer that much, but just didn’t know how to resist the friend-pressure. Some of my lowest points of parenting occured because of that stress. Don’t do that to yourself.

Get rid of all that extra stuff, and just stick with the important stuff. If you don’t know what the important stuff is, I can reassure you that it’s not 2nd grade football skills training, or travel dance competitions. These were all invented by people with much less children than you have now, and for many other reasons I won’t go into here. My point is this: Don’t fight this adjustment. Accept that you will have to make changes, but let me reassure you, that you will ask yourself, “Why didn’t we do this sooner?” You will grow closer as a family and less stressed as a mother. Embrace the old-fashioned values of a big family. A swing, some grass, and a good book is all kids need in the entertainment department. It would be more than the majority of kids in the world have. Always keep in mind ‘global’ parenting and ‘historic’ parenting…they make the expectations place on us laughable.

Besides that great gift, you will be giving your older children the gift of independence. Trust me, it was time anyways. They will learn some lessons and be better for it. If you don’t have time to check for homework and they didn’t either, they will learn it’s their responsibility. They might have to hear the word ‘no’ more often, if driving across town to play at a friends house for two hours doesn’t work with the baby’s nap. They will have to take care of themselves more, and be doted on less. You will kick yourself for not doing some of this earlier, and be surprised at how much you were holding them back from some really necessary lessons and experiences. Count yourself lucky…some parents wait till NEVER. It doesn’t turn out so good 20 years later.
Now I’ll get to the best part of all. Your older children with that baby… your heart will explode with the amount of love and tenderness they will show.
Get them involved right away. They will be your salvation in terms of managing this large plate you have in front of you. When they think you are not aware of their prescence, tell your husband how much you noticed so-and-so loves their baby sister or brother, and how much help they give. They will step up to the task unbelievably. Teach them how to hold the baby, how to swaddle, how to change a diaper (wet, or course). Have them run and get a fresh outfit, and don’t cringe at the color combo. Who cares. When the baby gets older, they are the best entertainers. You will never have to occupy that baby’s time. Set him out in the family room in his jumpy seat and the hoopla will get him good and tired. Don’t ever feel guilty for asking them for help. Give them new responsibilites. Ask one of them to make lunch, even if it’s just peanut butter on Ritz. They will love to do it for you if you thank them so much and brag about them. Don’t say “the baby”, say OUR baby. The gift you are giving them is priceless. They are learning how to care for your grandchildren. That is truly awesome and worth any inconveniece or adjustment that this little surprise threw your way.
One more thing. With my older three, I couldn’t wait to “the next”. The next stage, the next word, the next tooth… With this little guy, you will do the opposite. You will bawl at every stage. Be prepared.

You are not crazy. It’s completely normal. Birthdays are the worse. Have tissues handy.”

Michael Raynes Robinson

Our sweet baby boy has arrived!
Michael Raynes Robinson was born yesterday, on October 17th, 2011 at 5:38 pm, weighing a hefty 8 lbs 9 oz and 21″ in length. A true blessing for our family.
Disclaimer- This mama is on Percoset so… tonight, it’s just photos. Once I can form cohesive thoughts again, I will attempt to put into words the experience of bringing our one, and only, son into this world.
For the time being, these photos can tell the story.
Oh, and Mr. R was the closest in guessing the correct weight of his son. He has been giddy, is the only word to describe him, since the birth of his son.

Son. Son. Son- I’m trying to see how many times I can squeeze that word into a short post– good practice.

Thank you to Aunt Britty, the official “photographer” yesterday.