Archive for May, 2011

May 25, 2011

Bubble Mustache

For those who are not familiar (and we weren’t until the other night) a bubble mustache is a close cousin of the milk mustache, the former created when chewing on a bath toy before washing has commenced.

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I hope we’ve all learned something here today.

May 24, 2011

A Million Reasons to Smile

The number one comment about Jacob these days is what a happy baby he is.

Lately, I’ve been struck by the things that make him laugh.  Sometimes, it seems like nothing at all.  Often, it’s his own ability to crawl across a room or pull himself up to stand by holding on to a table or a chair.  Other times it’s my real or feigned coughing/choking (this worries me a bit), or the funny faces or silly sounds someone makes for him (his grandpa Karl is particularly skilled at this).

One night a few weeks ago, John was home in time to see Jacob before he went to bed.  He started to play with a new toy while he held the little man on his lap and Jacob lost his mind with giggles.  I was finishing some evening prayer while this happened (and taping it, clearly), and the smiles on their two faces turned out to be all the prayer I needed.

Of course, Jacob likes when we lift him up, when we spin him around, when he’s on the swings at the park, and when we dance with him.  He also giggles when he’s in the sling and I start to walk down stairs.  All these things must simply feel like bouncing to him, but even with that logical explanation in mind, he seems to enjoy the stair thing more than one might expect.

The other day we bought a new ball to play with, and bouncing that has the same effect.  We are always in motion these days, and it can be exhausting, but it’s super fun.  Thank goodness the ball currently holds his attention longer than most other things do these days.  It’s nice to play with a “big boy” toy with the little guy (a little easier on my back!).

I love that Jacob is such an active and curious little boy and that the movement of objects around him so fascinates him.  I imagine he is fluidly learning laws of physics when I play these games of motion with him, and I hope that all these playtime experiences serve him well in learning about his world.  Maybe that’s a lot to get out of a bouncing ball, but I don’t think so.

Either way, these smiles and your giggles are good for my soul.

May 23, 2011

A New York State of Mind, Indeed

A year ago, I was one of only two pregnant people I knew—and the other lived 900 miles away.  About this time last year, through friends of friends, we met another pregnant couple, and before we knew it we were moving to Brooklyn, the baby capital of New York City, where we met even more people who, it turns out, were either expecting or would be in the next few months.

We spent yesterday afternoon with a number of these couples and their little ones, and I was struck by how incredibly lucky we are to have this community of young families.  Typically New York City is billed as a habitat for singles, for professionals, for people looking to work hard and play hard.  Family life is not a trait often portrayed in cultural perspectives on the city.

But there are tons of different kinds of people in New York, all with different priorities and different goals.  Thankfully, there are more than a few who share ours.

To say that we have been blessed with a good community in this new home of ours would be an understatement.  We have been positively flooded with God’s grace as we meet more and more young families and more and more young couples who are trying to start families.

We’ve begun a fairly regular gathering with a bunch of them, and I am beyond grateful for a room where we can talk freely about birthing options, teething, parenting guilt and parenting triumphs, where we can share our experiences and learn from others’, where we can make plans and watch our children learn to play and share with each other.  That there’s always good food and drink to sample only adds to the pleasure of these times together.

Although I still struggle every day to trust God completely, this community we have is proof that trust in Him does bear great fruit.  I couldn’t see it a year ago, but my loneliness was about to be replaced with a gaggle of friends, the anxiety in my mind with peace in my heart, and my fears with laughter.

God truly does work in mysterious ways, and I have a sense that later in life, when circumstances are not as joyful as they are now, I will have this time to look back on as real, tangible evidence of God’s love.  Married life, parenting, starting a small business—none of these things is easy.  But I have seen how they become easier with trust, with God’s grace, and most importantly, with love.

I think, for the first time, I’d agree that New York really is the greatest city in the world.

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