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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

29 Weeks!









   So normally I pick just a few pics to post, but since I missed my 28 week pics (I blame Thanksgiving) I thought I would just throw them all up here! 29 weeks and 3rd trimester has started!!! I am about to leave for school so here are a few quick pregnancy memories:

-I actually used a Starbucks card I bought for someone else this week because I had such a severe Peppermint White Mocha craving--- terrible I know!
-Paul has told me several times during this pregnancy that I look just how he imagined I would look pregnant, but even cuter... That was an ego boost ;)
-I think baby has gotten as many prophetic words out here as I have and he's not even born yet!
-Puffin still does not have a name.
-Paul's dad is coming in town tomorrow for a visit and we cannot wait!!!! 
-We are super pumped for Christmas in Nebraska- I leave Dec 16th! :)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Beauty

   Last week our revival group pastor Abi spoke to all the girls about beauty and her personal testimony and story of how the Lord took her on a beauty journey. She is such an amazing, strong, stunning, powerful woman and it was such a privilege to learn from her. The following paragraphs are some thoughts and reflections on beauty/body image based on what impacted me from last week.
   Would you ever abuse a friend until she behaved perfectly or looked the way you wanted her to? Would you criticize, punish, and verbally assault her only to turn around and ask her to do a favor for you? We all read this and think: Of course I wouldn't! That sounds terrible! -but the truth is: so many of us do this to our bodies. We love our bodies conditionally and only accept them when we think they are 'perfect'. We are mean to them and overly critical, yet put unrealistic demands of them at the same time. Loving our bodies with no strings attached is so important as a woman because we go through many changes. Puberty, pregnancy, weight fluctuations, and menopause create very unique hormonal adjustments that are part of every woman's life.
   The sad thing is, even people who have 'perfect' figures have flaws that they would like to change. Some of the most insecure women on the planet are those who have taken every measure to preserve and change their looks only to realize later there are still things they don't like about themselves physically. If you cannot love your body unconditionally, you will never find peace. Changing that 'one thing' that bothers you just might be masking the root issue that you do not accept yourself. 
   This is not to say we should never do our hair and make-up, eat whatever we want, and be lazy, but if we love who we are, we will want to care for ourselves. I love to work out (when I'm not pregnant) and this is because I know I am worth it and it blesses my physical health. I also enjoy when I am able to get my nails done or a facial, but in this season of life being in ministry school does not financially allow me to indulge. That's ok though! I still feel beautiful  because I've already made up my mind to treat myself as such! Do you see the difference?- I do not take care of myself because I think it will make me beautiful. I take care of myself because I see myself as beautiful and want to steward my beauty.
   Abi (my Bethel pastor)also shared about body reconciliation. This is totally new to me, but has to do with actually speaking to our bodies, being in touch with what they need, and repenting for not being a good friend to ourself. I have began to declare love over my body (speaking to parts by name) and blessing it. Gratefulness is key. We should be the safest place for ourselves. We should be such a refuge from the onslaught of media images that define what the perfect body should look like. I am an advocate for my own body and when I love myself I empower those around me to more fully embrace who they are.
   One thing Abi does with people she counsels is has them go through magazines and look for women who have similar features to what they don't like about themselves (i.e. big hips, small breasts, big breasts, short, tall- whatever they are struggling with) that they find beautiful. They cut out these pictures as an exercise in redefining what beauty is. 
   I personally was so impacted by they idea of blessing our bodies and partnering with them. Being pregnant, I am experiencing a ton of physical changes that I would have thought would be really difficult for me since I have been blessed with being naturally slender. But I have committed to partnering with myself during this time and telling my body, "you go ahead and do what you need to do to sustain life... If you need to gain 30 lbs during this pregnancy I bless you, if you need to gain more, I'm still going to accept you." It is actually quite revolutionary because I find myself just so grateful I have a healthy body and the even more revolutionary outcome is I can see my body responding. I have struggled since I was 14 with acne, but I have been speaking life and acceptance to my skin and it has actually cleared up some! It's still not perfect, but that isn't even the goal because I no longer expect perfection out of myself.
   So friends, I challenge you to love who you were made to be. I even dare you to try speaking life and acceptance to your body out loud and watch how your perspective and attitude changes. You may even reap some physical blessings that come from not punishing yourself. Psalm 139 tells us how we are fearfully and wonderfully made and guess what?! I believe what God says about me :) MY BODY ROCKS- and so does yours! 
   

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

27 Weeks- 2nd Tri Ending

Crazy! 28 weeks (next Wednesday is the start of my 3rd trimester). Here are this weeks pics as I say good-bye to 2nd trimester.... bittersweet...









Thursday, November 10, 2011

26 Weeks

   Remember this? this was the first photobooth pic I took since knowing I was pregnant...
Wowza: Here is the difference at 26 weeks: Growing so fast! and moving lots too...




   I hear this is the best stage of pregnancy because morning sickness is gone and you're not so large yet that it's super uncomfortable. To me, my stomach is uncomfortable because I can't sleep on it and have to lay on my side. I also wake up at least 2 times a night now to go to the bathroom- oh joy... 
   I feel like my appetite is a little more back to normal... I crave strawberries! I go through a carton in like 2.5 days and get very testy if Paul asks me to share a berry with him ;)
   Currently, school is going well. We love it and are just trying to sort through what we will do once baby arrives in February. With all the family coming to visit I may not be up to class and homework. At least I have a few more months of soaking up all the amazing teaching.
   One thing that is interesting about pregnancy is the crazy dreams you get: for instance, last night I dreamed that I was walking around holding Puffin who was like 3 months old. I couldn't remember giving birth to him and didn't feel especially bonded to him. Flash to next scene in the dream and Puffin is 8 years old and bi-racial. I couldn't remember him growing up and I couldn't remember why he wasn't white... strange huh? These pregnancy hormones have a mind of their own! :))

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

25 Weeks and active!

Feeling great! Even been walking on the treadmill (thus the workout clothes in this week's pics) and reading a great labor/delivery book I got from the Bethel bookstore :) Thank goodness for photobooth!
Mercy.


He loves it in there..

Wondering if it is normal to have bb poking out this early...



Vermont/Boston 2011

Pics of our Vermont/Boston trip of 2011. We love visiting the east coast to run Wellness Clinics!!! Fun working vacation :)
At our favorite restaurant "Flatbreads" in Burlington, VT.

We don't have DD in NE or Cali :( prob a good thing...

Driving to Von Trap family lodge in VT.

Beautiful fall!



hmmm? foreshadowing of how I will feel come Feb??

Von Trap family lodge

Pauly goes to Harvard!

Visiting Annie's bf Nick at Harvard!

Harvard library (and a preggo couple)
Closer look: yep! baby is there :)

Ahh! the smell of knowledge!