I'm a homeschooling mom of 8 and write at "Just East of Crazy Land: Adventures in Parenting." My younger daughters share their art and writing at "The Passionate Pencil" and the older ones at "The Writing Sisters." Enjoy! :)
It’s a relief to see some blue sky again after the oppressive days of smoke. Best wishes to all who are suffering because of the wildfires. I hope the rain will also wash away your somber skies and bring back the sun! 🌞
Sometimes with an ongoing difficulty, distraction is the best medicine…in the case of ongoing nausea in pregnancy, there are of course many things to be done. Eating small snacks and meals often, having enough protein, drinking ginger or peppermint tea, etc. But sometimes, despite best efforts, pregnancy can feel like a giant stomach flu whose only cure is constant eating…at the very time many foods seems repulsive.
Sometimes the best cure for feeling queasy is simply not thinking about it so much, but that is difficult to do by sheer will power alone. It helps instead, to be distracted and think of something else. This is where reading novels comes in. Or rereading them, as the case may be…almost all the books pictured above were rereads, because I love returning to familiar worlds whose characters I already “get along with” and whose adventures, despite all misadventures along the way, are comfortingly going to turn out well.
So why else do I think reading is great during pregnancy? Here’s a little list:
1. Reading is a great excuse to sit down, or lie down, and to take a quiet moment for yourself. Instead of telling your husband or kids, “I’m going to go stare at the ceiling and moan while my stomach churns,” you can say, “I’m going to go read my book for a little while while you guys play or watch a show.”
2. Sitting quietly and reading a book helps you take time to digest properly when your stomach is sensitive…instead of running around right after a meal cleaning up, which is a great way to lose your lunch.
3. There is so much focus on feeding your body well when pregnant, in order to help your baby be healthy, but what about feeding your soul? Reading novels that inspire you, make you laugh or cry, help you to love and to hope, is a way to feed your soul. Since your emotions and mental state affect your little one, you can see this reading as a way to build up your baby’s spirit.
4. What kind of books do I like? Because pregnancy is already a state of heightened emotion, I don’t recommend reading crazy thrillers or compelling tragedies, especially not the latter. I read the prequel to the Hunger Games (A Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes) this spring, before we got pregnant, and I’m glad. It was an extremely scary portrait of a narcissist and I’m glad the baby couldn’t feel me trembling as I read deep into the night. Definitely a must read for any Suzanne Collins fan who isn’t in a super sensitive state, though!
I tried reading an early Canadian wilderness adventure novel, but had to put it down when each chapter’s tragedy was worse than the last.
Another kind of book on my “no thanks list” during pregnancy is parenting books. While this may seem counterintuitive, I find that many books on parenting can be so strongly worded about the “right way” to do just about everything, that they can lead to a huge introspective mom-guilt session…the last thing you need when already generously sharing your very being to help create new life.
I do love rereading classics by L.M. Montgomery, Jane Austen, and Louisa May Alcott. I also enjoyed rereading the Lord of the Rings trilogy…while darker than the others, the urgency and adventure certainly distracted me from my own little woes. If Frodo and Sam could half-starve while traveling through the wastelands of Mordor on a mission to save the world from evil, I could surely handle laying in bed eating yogurt and reading a book in order to help bring a new little life into the world.
In my last post, “Spot the Difference” I posted two pictures that my daughter drew of our family, and asked readers to spot the difference. Perhaps you’re all too busy with summer holidays to read or comment, or were simply hesitant to wager a guess, so here are a few more pictures that should make things a little more obvious.
And here’s the family member who isn’t in the photo, for the simple fact that this little bean didn’t exist yet, except, as the saying goes, as a twinkle in her father’s eyes. ✨
My sister has dubbed our new little one Timbit, because this is how James and I announced the baby to our other kids: we brought home a box of Timbits and told the kids we had a little piece of news for them, one currently smaller than a Timbit. After several guesses about things like Daddy buying me jewellery or something, and a hint that the news would not stay the size of a Timbit, the excited kids realized it was a baby.
Yup, it’s kinda crazy, but at this point, may as well own the crazy. Thinking of getting such a jersey for the baby to save trouble at the grocery store: “Oh, how cute! Is this your second? Third? Fourth?”
So here’s my happy headline for the week: I’m on workshop at the Copper Ridge Conference Centre at Britannia Beach and it’s amazing! After years of fundraising efforts, and the amazing generosity of many donors, both great and small, the dream of a beautiful, peaceful place for people to come on retreat has come true! But don’t take my word for it—look! This is the view from my room!!
I feel so incredibly happy because when I’m surrounded by beautiful nature, I feel like I’m twelve again, and tromping through the woods with my brothers.
I’ve been able to do things like stick my feet in the cool rushing creek…
…perch on top a huge rock to gaze and the view, read my book and write.
…..and swim in the ocean at this beach!
All of this would be great even if we were roughing it and camping, but boy are we not. Instead our small group (half the usual size due to Covid safety measures) is staying in the elegant centre and being treated like queens by the lovely administration who cook for us…a massive treat for a group of busy moms! Because we can only seat two at each table, we’ve taken turns sitting with someone different at most meals, and have all gotten to know each other so much better! This has been a balm for my company-starved soul!
So what does it look like, the building?
Well, that’s enough pictures for one day…next time I’ll show you the wildflowers, some of the old artwork inside….and more of those lovely views!
Miracles do happen! Hope your day is filled with them!
In my last post, Making Our Own Headlines, I wrote about the idea of writing our own headlines for each day, focussing on the little things that matter to us and bring us joy, rather than all the huge world news and depressing statistics. If we can each find more beauty in our days, and be grateful for it, we can bring more hope to the world.
So here are a few more of my “happy headlines.” I hope they inspire you to notice many joyful moments in your own day, and if it’s a harder one for you today, here’s sending you a giant hug, and wishes for a better tomorrow! 🥰
Bees Keep Buzzing, Blissfully Ignoring World Pandemic
Tired Mom Receives Home Spa Treatment from Tiny Masseuse
Summer Brings More Family Time For Fancy Baking
Mother and Daughter Bring Joy to Neighbour by Sharing Home Baking
Save-On-Foods Grocery Delivery Service Saves the Day for Car-less Family
Well, I realize many of my happy headlines have to do with food…I guess feeding people is my love language, and stocked cupboards make me feel safe. I am so lucky to be able to take such good care of the kids in this way, while my hardworking accountant husband slogs away to earn our daily bread. Thanks, honey.