Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Just when you thought you knew me...

I saw this on a blog I have in my reader and like Fee, thought it would be fun to share with all of you.

10 Things I liked as a teenager that I really don’t care for now

Tight-rolling my jeans
Frosted hair
Big Bows in my hair
Wearing 2 pairs of socks (different colors of course)
D&G velcro bracelets
Blue eye liner
NKOTB (She's my candy-girl...)
Country Music
Staying up all night long

10 things I didn’t like as a teenager that I do like now

Sour cream
The idea of having my own kids
Being uncool (I embrace my uncoolness now!)
Listening to sermons on cd while I drive
Really spicy food
Only having a few friends

10 things that I didn't like as a teen and still don’t like

Clothes shopping
Liberals who are "tolerant" of everything but me
Bad movies
Guinea Pigs (sorry Harry)
Raw broccoli
Being embarrased in public

10 things I liked as a teen and still do

Christian Pop Music
Sweet Tea
Sleeping In
People who play instruments
A made bed
Kirk Cameron (but for completely different reasons)
Public Speaking

Random Musings and Photos

Whew! I finally got caught up with responding to my comments for November. Sorry to took so long. (That apology is mostly for Rebecca since she is the only one who regularly comments on my blog.) I really want to try and leave comments for other people on their blogs too, but it is just barely enough to find time to read their blogs, let alone think of something insightful to share.

I am trying to keep a commitment to myself to post at least 4 times a week. And I mean real posts, posts that are worth reading. I think at least one of those posts should have pictures too. Because, let's be honest, most of you 4 people who read my blog really just want updates on Charlotte Moon and endure the rest of my musings for the excitement of the pictures.

I do have some pictures too. And some commentary to go along with them.

First up, is this photo of a stainless steel sponge basket we saw at Lowe's. The price tag for this ~4"x4" basket is actually $146.08! No, that is not a typo! It is a custom basket to fit this really cool half-moon shaped sink meant to be installed in a kitchen island. This is what I call conspicuous consumption!Next, we have this cute little picture of Charlotte sucking on her toes. I know, you saw a picture of her with her toes last week. But, I'm as obsessed with taking pictures of my little girl as she now appears to be with her toes. I knew babies would like to play with their toes... but my baby girl's fascination has reached obsessive levels! She would be more than happy to just play with them all day long except that I make her wear socks. I am such an evil mommy!
Thirdly, here is a picture of the sign at my Weight Watchers meeting the week before Thanksgiving. I actually have this as the desktop background on my computer. The acronym is a very good one for the holiday season.

I came across this article recently while browsing blog land. I hope you'll take the time to at least skim it. Even though I know not everyone who reads my blog agrees with everything I write, I'd be surprised if any of you are so concerned about carbon footprints that you would have an abortion to prevent global warming! I'm consulting my thesaurus for words to describe my personal reaction - ludicrous, ridiculous, preposterous, absurd, nonsensical, stupid, foolish, comical, silly, outlandish, unreasonable, etc... I could keep going, but I trust you get the gist of my reaction by now? Since when is the health of the planet more important than the life of a human being? Genesis 1.28 commands mankind to subdue the earth, not the be subdued by it.

Stepping off my soapbox... This just might be the most random blog post I've ever made! Oh, and all 3 pictures were taken with the camera on my cell phone.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Interpreting Scripture

After our Bible study on Sunday morning... I had a flash of inspiration. I was thinking about interpreting scripture so that I may apply it to my life and it occured to me that it was kind of like putting on moisturizer.

Let's say you are in a hurry one day to get ready. In your haste to apply your moisturizer you grab the bottle and start slathering it all over. A short while later, you look down and see that your have large orange splotches and streaks all over and your palms are also orange. What happened? I'll tell you - you rushed your application! You forgot to read the bottle and only now do you realize that you grabbed your sunless tanner instead of your regular moisturizer.

This can happen when we study the Bible too. If we read a passage of scripture and immediately begin trying to apply it to our lives, we can miss the important part and end up with a problem on our hands.

Take Romans 6:1 for example. If one reads that quickly and without caution, one could end up reasoning that the more sin we have in our life, the more grace we will experience. However, when we take the time to read the verse in context and ask ourselves, "what do these words actually mean?" we realize that Paul is asking the question in verse 1 rhetorically.

I strongly recommend that anyone reading the Bible pay close attention to these six questions from JI Packer: (originally found by me here and reinterpreted by Bruce below)

1. What do these words actually mean?

2. What other Scriptures can help us understand this text? How does this passage fit into the message of the whole Bible?

3. What truths does this passage teach about God, and about man in relation to God?

4. How are these truths related to the saving work of Christ, and what light does the gospel of Christ throw upon them?

5. What experiences do these truths explain, or seek to create or cure? What is the practical purpose of this section of Scripture?

6. How do these truths apply to myself and others in our actual situation? To what present human condition do they speak, and what are they telling us to believe and do?

You've lost that lovin' feeling...

Okay, I haven’t lost the lovin’ feeling, but I have misplaced my bloggin’ feeling recently. I have lots of ideas about things to write about, but the time to do so just never materializes. In the few days before Thanksgiving, Charlotte was up every two hours overnight and I had a horrible cough. Then, when we were out of town for the holiday, she slept like an angel and only wanted to nurse every 4 hours. You could almost set a clock by her! Now that we are home again, we are back to every 2 hours… Strange. I was home by 2:30 or so last night and put Charlotte down for bed around 7:45. In those ~5 hours, I must have had her latched on for 2 ½! I don’t mind spending the time with her, but it kills my productivity. FlyLady would not be happy with my piles of paper right now!

I’ll try to post some pictures from the holiday soon. But before I do, I want to give a shout out to my little brother and his wife Michelle. They did a wonderful job hosting us while we stayed at their place and our meal and together time on Thanksgiving Day was great! Kudos to both of you!

Why we honor the name of Charlotte Moon

Why we honor the name of Charlotte Moon
Charlotte “Lottie” Moon was born in 1840 to a wealthy Virginia family. Her mother encouraged her education and although it was unusual for a woman of her time, Lottie learned eight languages and earned a Master of Arts. Lottie’s intelligence and sense of humor attracted the attention of a Harvard professor who asked her to marry him. But Lottie turned down marriage and spent her life as a missionary to the Chinese people.

Single women were not usually sent as missionaries, but Lottie believed there was no barrier too great for God. She found financial support from Baptist women in Virginia and she moved to China. She served through three wars. During the Boxer Rebellion, she disguised herself as a Chinese man and snuck behind enemy lines so she could minister to suffering people. Later, during the Chinese Revolution, she took on duties as a hospital administrator when she found a local hospital had been abandoned by fleeing doctors.

Lottie spent her life trying to make the glory of God known. She worked tirelessly, and she wrote letters home encouraging more Christians to take seriously the call of Jesus to demonstrate God’s love throughout the world.

After the Chinese Revolution, a famine struck China. Lottie continued to put the needs of others above her own. As she saw people starving, she gave away all she had to save them. She spent the last of her own money buying food for others; she gave until she had nothing left to give. As she slowly starved, her Christian friends grew worried about her deteriorating health. They tried to send her back to America to recover, but it was too late. On Christmas Eve of 1912, Charlotte Moon died; she weighed less than 60 pounds.

But, that ending is not sad or tragic because Lottie did not really lose anything. She lived looking toward eternity, and now she lives forever. She lived and died believing the words of her Savior who promised that God sees our actions, knows our hearts and rewards those who love him. Lottie lived the command of Jesus: “Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that lasts for eternal life” (John 6:27).

We chose the name of Charlotte Moon for our daughter because we pray our Charlotte will have the same wisdom, strength, determination and faith as her namesake. We pray her name will be her constant reminder of the singular focus that should drive the Christian life. And we pray her name will also serve us as a constant reminder of our role as her parents—to teach her to love God with all her heart, all her soul, all her mind and all her strength, and to love her neighbor as herself. Whether God calls her to live that love in a far-off land is His choice.

Bruce & Jennifer Sabin

Monday, November 19, 2007

Baby Discoveries

Charlotte has finally figured out that she has toes. Yep folks, our little girl now knows what those things on the end of her legs are for. They are for pulling and tugging and playing with and pretty soon I am sure she will decide they are for putting in her mouth!
By the way, this is the last day she will wear this adorable, organic cotton outfit... it is too small. I couldn't even button the top button this morning! She's growing up so fast!

Am I a bad mommy?

The last few nights Charlotte has wanted to nurse every couple of hours. On Sunday morning, around 4 am, I looked over at her and actually asked her, though my sleepiness, if she was in league with the Devil to keep me from church that day! Does that make me a bad mommy?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

ApronThrift Girl Video

I don't really expect that most of you who read my blog will be interested in a video on thrift store shopping. However, I thought it would be neat to point out myth #3. I have a few items in my wardrobe that were thrifted and no one knows which ones they are. It is my fun little secret!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Fingerprint of God

Isn’t funny how you can know a song forever and then hear it one morning and be struck by it in a completely different way?

I was listening to the song “Fingerprint of God” in the car this morning on my way to drop Charlotte off at day care. I have known this song for a long time and was blithely singing the lyrics when we arrived. I kept humming the chorus to myself as I walked around to get Charlotte. When I saw her, I started singing the chorus to her (no snide comments about my singing now!) and as I sang these lyrics and looked into her eyes she gave me a smile filled with so much delight it near broke my heart. She is the fingerprint of God and there is no other baby just like her.

She is a “living breathing priceless work of art.” I have many works of art on my walls, some of it super cheap and some of it kind of pricey (which still might be cheap by some people’s standards), but none of it is as breathtaking as my daughter. I’ve said before how I am capable of staring at her for hours (if only I had even an hour to just stare!) and it is because she is so captivating.

Here are the partial lyrics to “Fingerprint of God,” sung by Steven Curtis Chapman. I’ll try to come back later and post a link to the song so you can hear it.

I can see the fingerprints of God
When I look at you
I can see the fingerprints of God
And I know it's true
You're a masterpiece
That all creation quietly applauds
And you're covered with the fingerprints of God

Never has there been and never again
Will there be another you
Fashioned by God's hand
And perfectly planned
To be just who you are
And what He's been creating
Since the first beat of your heart
Is a living breathing priceless work of art and...

Just look at you
You're a wonder in the making
Oh, and God's not through, no
In fact, He's just getting started and…

Monday, November 12, 2007

Breastfeeding Isn't Easy Folks

It makes me sad to read an article like this. So many women miss out on the joys of breastfeeding because of perceived obstacles that can be overcome with just a little bit of effort. I get that the mother working at a fast food restaurant may not be able to pump on her 15-min break as easily as I can on my 2 ½ hour planning break, but even that obstacle can be overcome if the mother is willing.

I have to applaud the Regency (where I delivered) for having great support with 2 lactation consultants on-site. However, they lose points in my book for the sheer volume of formula they sent me home with, even though they knew I was planning to breastfeed exclusively. I am sure I came home with about 30 single-serve bottles and another 4 cans of powdered formula. Oh and I think there were 2 packages of single-serve formula in glass bottles as well.

It wasn’t the easiest thing in the world to establish our breastfeeding dyad. I did have sore nipples and some cracking because Charlotte took a couple of weeks to get a hang of nursing. Using Lansinoh and nursing on the less sore side more often helped. But those problems were not insurmountable compared to the lost benefits from giving her formula. Nothing man-made could ever be as good for her as my milk. We have to do more to encourage moms to continue nursing past 3 months.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

First Virus Times Three!

Yep! That's right. Sweet, little, darling Charlotte gave her Mommy and Daddy the gift that keeps on giving - her virus. I woke up Saturday morning with awful, horrible stomach cramps and by the end of the day her daddy had them too. I spent most of the day laying down and sleeping. Daddy was a super-trooper and took care of Charlotte all day. I didn't change a single diaper Saturday. I was so dizzy I was scared to pick her up to do anything with her. Fortunately, around 9 pm, relief came for both of us, but not in any way that you would want me to describe to you (think cookies).

Now though, on Sunday evening, we are all feeling better though we don't have any appetite. I think I ate less than 1,000 calories today. Not good for keeping up my milk production, but I think one day like this won't be the end of the world. I'll be keeping a close eye on that this week.

In more fun news... I was telling my mom tonight about Charlotte being all grabby lately. This is a new thing to her and she grabs everything. She grabs Mrs. Wooten's pinky when taking a bottle at day care. She grabs my shirts while nursing. She will be content to hold onto to a finger if she is fussy. She grabs Daddy's chest hair when he holds her up right (I'm told that is painful). She will even keep a grasp on a rattle for quite a long time. She is starting to realize that she can make things happen, as in, make the rattle make noise. Here is a short video of her grabbing something else... we've got to get this worked out of her system before she gets much older. :-)

I also have a cute picture of Charlotte with her Grumpy taken a week or so ago that I forgot to post. Here you go Grumpy! (You should be able to click on it for a larger resolution one you can save.)

Tim Hawkins

Friday, November 09, 2007

Blogger Coffee - Part 3

From Like Merchant Ships: As we swept up the crumbs in the post-party quiet, Christy wondered if more bloggers are introverts than extroverts. If so, are the most popular bloggers also the extroverts among us? Or do you think the Internet enables even the shyest to adopt a more outgoing personality?

I'm a little behind on adding my comment to the 'coffee' but if you read my post below I have a good excuse.

I really don't think introverts or extroverts are attracted to blogging in greater numbers than the other. Personally, I'm an extrovert (ESTJ) and blog in part because I like the feedback and attention I get from family and friends. Of course, I also blog to keep a record of Charlotte's life for her to enjoy reading some day. There are so many stories from my own childhood I don't know and am only just learning. For example, my mom and I just got off the phone and as we were discussing Charlotte's trip to the ER my mom told me I was in the hospital at 5 months for bronchitis. She told me how awful it was to walk in and see the respiratory therapist beating on my back to break things up in my chest.

As for the more popular bloggers... it is hard to know if those are the extroverts among us. The fact that they put themselves out there might lead one to believe they are extroverts, but on the other hand... the fact that they might be anonymous might lead one to believe they are introverts.

Overall, I don't think one's I or E status has an affect on one's likelihood to blog, or to have a large reader base. Ultimately, it is the content and whether or not it meets a felt need of people browsing around blog land who stumble upon our musings that matters the most.

First Virus

They don't put a spot for this in the baby books. But if they did... we'd have our entry as of last night.

Charlotte and I went for a lovely photo session yesterday afternoon and then decided to visit a friend's house for a little party. Just as we were getting ready to go, Charlotte decided to leave the contents of her stomach for our hostess. (Who, coincidentally, had been dealing with her own sick baby.) Once we got her all cleaned up and out of her now yucky dress, we tried again. About 5 feet from the door, she said, "Wait Mommy, I have more to leave behind." So I cleaned her up again then soothed her so we could make our journey home.

I called Daddy who was driving home from a training session and told him about his sick little girl. Once I pulled into the driveway I heard a familiar sound. Yep, Charlotte was heaving and leaving more 'gifts' behind. I could hardly get her out of the car and into the house due to my extreme nervousness. She has thrown up before, but never anything this long and with heaving!

Oh my! What is a new mom to do when over the next hour, her sweet baby girl continues to heave and bring up yellow stomach acid because there was nothing else left in her little belly? Call the pediatrician of course! The doctor on call for our practice said to watch her and if she continued to throw up over the next hour to take her in to the closest ER. At this point, she was still alert and didn't have a temperature.

Of course, I know better than the doctor and when Charlotte tosses her cookies 5 minutes later declare to my husband that we are going to the ER. Yes, I know it's late and you have to be at work tomorrow, but no, I am not going alone. This is too traumatic. Once there, she heaves a few more times over the course of an hour or so, and they tell me to give her pedialite and monitor her for 12-24 hours. If she keeps vomiting after 12 hours, bring her back in. They weren't much help for this new mom's rattled nerves. In all fairness to the doctor, I would have still taken her if we waited an house and probably have received the same advice from the ER anyway.

So by 9:30 pm, home we went... she managed to fall asleep in the car on our way back. That was a blessing because at this point she hadn't slept any since about 2:30 this afternoon. She stayed asleep long enough to be taken out of her car seat and placed in her swing (which we didn't turn on). After another 20 minutes she woke herself up by getting sick yet again! Hasn't my little daughter had enough?

We carry on with her throwing up every 20 minutes or so. Of course, there's nothing but bright yellow acid coming up. I google that and decide it really isn't so bad until the vomit turns green (bile). At 2 am she is really hungry so I give her 1 ounce of expressed breastmilk mixed with 1 ounce of pedialite (per the doctor's instructions). She hungrily takes it in and then just as quickly gives it back to me. I knew motherhood would come with a lot of gifts, but didn't realize this would be one of them!

By now, I've not had more than 10 minutes of sleep because every time she makes a noise I have to check that she is okay. At 3 am she heaves again, but nothing comes out. Her little body seems to have given up the ghost. Through Charlotte tries, she can barely muster a good cry. We both fall asleep in Daddy's chair until about 4 am. Somehow, I don't feel refreshed after that nap.

At 4:30 am she is no longer satisfied with sucking her pacifier and she hasn't kept anything in her tummy since 6:30 the night before. She quietly takes 1 ounce of pedialite and goes back to sleep. Miracle of all miracles she keeps it down! At 5:30 am, we try a little more fluid. She keeps down another 1.5 ounces.

Now that it seems we have moved past the vomiting stage, we got to move into the diarrhea stage. Strangely enough, I find this MUCH easier to handle than vomit. It doesn't involve my little girl straining her whole body and she can soil her diaper without much effort. It seems this next phase of her virus is easier on her body as a whole.

It is now a little after 9 am and I just finished giving Charlotte another bottle, this time 1/2 breastmilk and 1/2 pedialite. She has kept it down and even managed to play in her swing a little. While changing her last diaper, she gave me a smile that could light up New York City. I love being her mommy.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Blogger Coffee - Part 2

Did you use a silly pen name and live to regret it? What would you do differently, if you were starting your blog all over again?

I can proudly say I had no silly names for my first blog. What I did have was a really boring name - Jenn's Journal. I just couldn't think of anything more unique that that. In my defense, most of the blood was rushing to my belly for little Baby Sabin so that didn't leave many resources for my brain! As a matter of fact, I'm still using that excuse... my friend Angela calls it ''Baby Brain" and says I can use it as an excuse as long as I am a mother.

Honestly, I don't think I would do anything differently in my start to blogging. I'm happy with the way my blog has turned out and the ways it continues to grow and change with me.

I have been considering privacy issues recently in regards to my photos and names though. That is one reason I added my Creative Commons license at the bottom of my blog. But, since my blog is read widely by friends and family, and relatively few strangers I don't think it will be a major concern of mine. And... if you are a stranger to me, leave a comment so we can become friends!

I am glad I changed my blog name recently though. I was actually inspired in part by Like Merchant Ships, the blog hosting this lovely coffee. I loved how she had taken a scripture and turned it into her blog name. I looked around and considered other passages from Proverbs before I finally settled on Family Musings.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Blogger Coffee - Part 1

Since I don't have many real life friends who blog (okay, none really), I decided to make some blog friends by participating in an on-line coffee party. Today, the conversation turned to who reads our blogs.

Does your husband read your blog? Does your family know about it? If so, does it cause problems or keep you real?

My husband does read my blog. As a matter of fact, he usually proofs my posts for me. By that I mean, when I am done with a post that I think is grammatically perfect with no typos I announce that I am done and he is the first to read it. Then, he lets me know what I missed so I can really perfect for the rest of the world. This is important because I am an English teacher and need to have as few mistakes as possible in order to maintain my reliability. :-)

My family knows about it also. I figured since I call my blog Family Musings it would be a good idea to let them in on my bloggy ideas. Also, one of the reasons I originally started blogging was to help my family, who doesn't live terribly near us, keep up with the progress of my pregnancy. I have continued to keep my blog to share the growth of our baby girl with them and whomever else happens upon us.

So far, there haven't been any issues with my family knowing about my blog. Except my brother. He won't read it. I wish he would, but only in a vain, I want attention sort of way. Besides we both know that his lovely bride reads it very faithfully and she tells him the good stuff and shows him the pictures of their niece.

I enjoy having my blog so much and often tell my family, in response to questions about Charlotte, "well, if you'd have read my blog..." They are starting to get the hang of it. I even made it easier for them by creating a subscription service they can use to be e-mailed all blog posts. Pretty nice of me, eh?

[EDIT: My 'real life' friend Rebecca pointed out that she blogs also. You can check out her adorable new bouncing boy here. I hope she gets into blogging more, I think she must have lots of wonderful stories with her big, busy family!]

Monday, November 05, 2007

Maya Angelou Moment

I had a Maya Angelou moment today in class. A few weeks ago, before I came back to teaching, my students read an except from Angelou's I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. In it, the main young, female character (Maya) has the opportunity to carry the groceries home of a well-respected elder woman (Mrs. Flowers) in her community. While there, Mrs. Flowers reads to Maya from Tale of Two Cities ("It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..."). Maya can hardly speak when the older woman is done reading because the words sound completely different coming from Mrs. Flowers' mouth than from the page. This is when Maya begins a love relationship with books and words.

Now, I don't think I inspired any love relationships, but I did show my students the power of good reading. While reading the diary entry Forest Fire, by Anais Nin, I stopped and asked them all to find a phase or sentence that vividly described the fire. There are several extremely vivid examples in the two short pages. I have a favorite one and when no one pointed it out, I read it aloud to them.

Most of the students just stared at me after I read it (which I am sure was their sugar-induced comas), but a couple were really struck by the sounds of the words I read. (I'd write it out for you here, but I left the lit book at school today.) One student in particular said she had read that part, but it sounded much more interesting when I read it and she felt like Maya in that 'caged bird' story.

It made me feel nice inside that I could show students how exciting the printed word could be. I'll come back later and post some of her great, vivid language.

Menu Planning Monday

I'm going to try something new this week and participate in a meme called Menu Planning Monday. It is part of my quest to bring more order to our life, which I can really use right now. You can learn more about it by clicking the button below.

Here's our menu for the week:

  • Monday - Church Supper (yeah, somone else cooks and cleans for us!)
  • Tuesday - Turkey Burgers w/ frozen veggies
  • Wednesday - Shrimp Scampi (from MGFK)
  • Thursday - Soup and Sandwiches (thanks Grocery Game)
  • Friday - Chicken Sausage over Pasta and veggies with Parm cheese
  • Breakfast is almost always cereal and fruit
  • Lunches will be leftovers or homemade lunchables

Saturday, November 03, 2007


Grumpy & Grandma came to hang out with us today. Grandma won't usually let us take her picture but we got this cute shot of him and Charlotte. I promised to share it with him here.

Grumpy, click on the picture for a larger version you can save to your hard drive.

Oh, and the SabinDome site was updated again today! I'm on a roll... I added 2 pictures that Bruce took this morning while he was showing the dome off to Grumpy.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

1st Time Mom

Being the first time mom that I am, I came back today to share another video of my stunningly amazing daughter, not just demonstrating that she can roll over, but that she is ambidextrous when it comes to flipping from her tummy to her back. Allow her to demontsrate:

And she got to sit in her Bumbo tonight. Yes, this is the same product that was recently recalled, and no, I am not returning mine. Seriously, why would a parent put their child in one of these on a high surface? In addition to the warning on the box, there is this little thing called common sense...

New Shoes

Charlotte has shoes for months to come due to a GREAT sale I found online at Darling Shoes. You can enter coupon code city85 and get 85% off your total order... not just clearance prices! Here's what Charlotte got:

· 1 of : Girl Gear - Sz 2
· 1 of : Lil' Princess Pack - Sz 4 (inc the black & pink pairs)
· 1 of : Skaters - Navy - Sz 1
· 1 of : Teeny Tiny Tennis Shoes - Lime Green - Sz 3

When I measured her feet to see what size she is now, they only went about 3/4 of the way to the size 1 mark!