Daily Rebecca - Page 2 of 250 - dishing up a little bit of everything.

When Parenting Feels Impossible

October 15th, 2014

I’ve got a delicious recipe to share (tomorrow), but I’d be remiss if I didn’t blog about my incredibly challenging past few days.

You guys.

I thought I’d been pushed to my limits in parenting before, but this last stretch was so much more intense.

SO MUCH MORE.

For starters, Avery is not sleeping well at night.  Late last week, she started crying around 1am and would not settle, so I went in to comfort her and she just wanted to be held.  It was super sweet, so I chalked it up to a precious moment of snuggles and a worthy parenting sleep sacrifice.  My plan was to snuggle her to calm her down and then put her back in the crib to sleep.  As soon as I put her in and started to walk away, she started sobbing.

So, I sat beside the crib and she calmed down.

I sang her some lullabies and kept her company to make her feel safe.

But then I got tired.

REAL TIRED.

So I waited till she dozed off and I started to sneak out of her room.

She immediately woke up and started sobbing again.

Ugh.

So I sat in her rocking chair and dozed there for a long stretch.

Tried to sneak out again and she woke up and sobbed again.

So I grabbed a pillow and blanket from the couch to sleep on her floor for a while (this mama’s gotta get some sleep!).

It was super uncomfortable, particularly at 30 weeks pregnant, so I woke up and attempted to sneak out again.

FAIL.

She heard me and the cycle continued.

So basically I hardly slept all night except for a few brief stretches in the rocker and on the floor.

NO BUENO.

You can imagine how hard it was to get up for the day and tackle everything with so little sleep.

On top of the sleep drama, Grace is going through something.

Probably average four year old girl stuff, but it feels so much more major.

Everything is a battle, everything is a crisis, everything is a cry-worthy issue, everything is a power struggle.

It’s wearing me out.

And of course this is all right on the heels of having an incredible couple of weeks implementing the biblical strategies in Loving Your Kids On Purpose.

The past few weeks, I’ve been rocking and rolling day in and day out.  Patting myself on the back for how patient and kind I’ve been in each and every situation.  So proud of the growth I’ve experienced from my former fear & punishment cycle of handling bad behavior.

I don’t know how my giant head even got through the door!

It’s so funny how this always happens to me.  Just when I think I’ve got this whole parenting thing figured out, everything falls apart.

Ok, maybe funny is the wrong word….traumatic may be more like it.

I don’t like traumatic.

At all.

So…

The Jesus Calling devotional is my ::ahem:: bathroom reading material.  I keep it on the back of the toilet and find that to be a great place to have some uninterrupted devotional time! Lol

Anyway, a few lines from an entry last week have been rocking my world ever since:

Trust me enough to let things happen without striving to predict or control them.

When you project yourself into the future, rehearsing what you will do or say, you are seeking to be self-sufficient: to be adequate without My help.  This is a subtle sin – so common that it usually slips by unnoticed.

Rather than fearing your inadequacy, rejoice in My abundant supply.

Train your mind to seek My help continually, even when you feel competent to handle something by yourself.  Don’t divide your life into things you can do by yourself and things that require My help.

Instead, learn to rely on me in every situation.

That’s just a paraphrase of the October 10th entry, but it really really resonated with me.

The problem isn’t that I was trying to implement some awesome parenting principles.  The problem was that I approached it like I approach so many things.

Just like a toddler…

I CAN DO IT MYSELF.

“I got this, Lord.”

“You can go help other people who really need it because I’m pretty fantastic and won’t be needing your help parenting now that I’ve read this great book.”

DUDE.

Talk about being off base.

WAAYYYY off base.

But He always does what it takes to draw us back to Him.  Like a mother hen, He gathers us under His wings. (Matt 23:37)

I love that He never forces us to turn to Him.  He always asks, “Are you willing?”

By the time yesterday morning rolled around and Avery had been fitfully tossing and turning in my bed since 1am and I had a FULL day of church and preschool ahead of me, I was willing.

I literally went into the bathroom and looked my messy-hair-plaid-flannel-nightshirt-puffy-morning-face in the mirror and said aloud, “Lord I do not have ANYTHING for today.  I’m totally empty and I cannot do any of this on my own.  I need you.”

Then, instead of rehearsing how I’d face each part of my day, I relinquished it all to Him.  I took my faltering, mustard-seed faith and I just put one foot in front of the other, trusting that He’d take care of me.

And you know what?

He did.

He’s always faithful.

His mercies are new every morning.

Hallelujah!


First Field Trip – Apple Orchard

October 10th, 2014

Grace had her first field trip this week!  The preschool visited Blake’s Big Apple and had a morning packed full of fun…and WIND.

me and the girls

HOLY COW WAS IT WINDY!

Like gale force, tornado like winds.

You think I’m exaggerating, don’t you?

Well maybe a little, but I don’t remember ever experiencing wind like that before!  Pot of mums were flying across the ground, hair was whipping everyone’s faces, and the temperature felt about 30* cooler than it would have without the wind.

Good thing we’re tough :)

Grace had lots of fun hanging out with her school bestie, Kate.  The two of them sat next to each other on the hayride, went through the corn maze, picked out pumpkins together and played all around the kid zone together.

girls

At first Avery was not sure about the hay on the hayride, but eventually she made peace with it and enjoyed the ride :)

avery irritated with hay

hay tower

swing.com

I really appreciated having a chance to talk with Kate’s mom while Kate’s dad tagged along with the girls.

Avery even had a lot of fun!  I was proud of her endurance despite the crazy wind and her lingering cold.

Photo Oct 08, 11 21 44 AM

avery touching lamb

Petting the farm animals was definitely Avery’s favorite part of the trip!  She is SO BRAVE about getting up close and personal with as many animals as she can.  Even to the point of touching the slobbery pig snouts!  GROSS!

lamb

She also had fun interacting with Kate’s little sister whose name also happens to be named Grace.  I see some mutually fun playdates in our future!

Picking apples right off the tree was probably the highlight for Grace, although she was pretty darn proud of her little pumpkin too :)

grace with pumpkin

avery with apples

We finished the morning with cider and donuts and were planning to eat sack lunches, but there was no way I could imagine wrangling both of my girls AND their lunches in all the WIND, so we packed up a little early (along with most folks) and ate lunch in the car on the way home.

All in all, it was a great day and left us excited for the next field trip which is the Circus in November!


Chicken Pot Pie Soup with Pie Crust Croutons

October 9th, 2014

Happy fall everyone!!

Tis the season for apple cider, donuts, cold weather, colorful leaves, and warm comfort food!

This recipe is incredibly delicious and comforting and not very complicated either :)

Back in my working days my boss would order lunch for everyone in the office whenever he was on-site.  Talk about a nice guy!  We had a variety of places we’d order from, but there was one “mom and pop” place right next door that served up about 10 different soups each day.  I was always so excited to see Chicken Pot Pie Soup on their list!

They topped their version with pie crust crumbles and it was the icing on the cake.  The soup was thick and creamy which contrasted perfectly with the rich, buttery crunch of the pie crust.

Are you drooling yet? :)

So when I saw this recipe on Pinterest, I had to give it a try!

I wish you could see all the delicious chicken, broccoli, and carrots, but we were hungry that night so I just snapped a few pictures really quick without doing any major “staging”.

I guess you’ll have to make it yourself to see all the yummy chunks!

chicken pot pie soup close up

Vegetarians shouldn’t dismiss this recipe!  By omitting the chicken, subbing vegetable broth for the chicken stock and adding some potatoes and extra veggies, you have yourself a batch of Veggie Pot Pie Soup!

One of the things that makes this recipe so easy is the use of frozen pie crust (plug your ears mom!).  If you happen to like making crust from scratch, be my guest, but pie crust is my nemesis!

Normally I don’t like frozen pie crust as much as homemade….at least when it comes to pie.  But in this recipe since you’re just cutting the crust into strips and baking it to crumble on top of your soup, I find it to be a very good substitute for the real deal.

Either way you make it, I know you’ll love it :)

chicken pot pie soup with pie crust croutons

Chicken Pot Pie Soup with Pie Crust Croutons
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups chicken, cooked and diced (I usually broil a couple of breasts with salt/pepper on them...5 minutes on each side)
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen broccoli florets, chopped
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups whole milk (or 1 cup lowfat milk and 1 cup heavy cream)
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded + extra for sprinkling on each bowl
  • ½ package pie crust, thawed
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, melt butter over medium high heat. Add onions, celery and carrots and cook to soften about 5-7 minutes. Add broccoli and cook another 5 minutes or so. Sprinkle with flour and cook an additional minute, stirring constantly. Slowly add broth, milk, salt and pepper. Use a whisk to combine, then add in cooked chicken. Heat over medium heat until warm, about 10-15 minutes. At the very end, stir in shredded cheddar and mix until it's fully melted and combined.
  2. To make crust strips, unroll thawed pie crust (one crust). Cut into strips and lay on parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake in a 450 degree oven for 6-8 minutes, until browned. Remove from oven and break into squares.
  3. To assemble, Pour soup into individual ramekins and top with shredded cheese and pieces of pie crust strips. ENJOY!
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