Hello, Deer

Jack and I saw a deer in our backyard this morning. I didn’t get a picture because were busy just enjoying it. We haven’t had a deer in our yard in almost two years. We have a fenced yard, but it has three gates and we used to leave the gates open for the deer. (The big ones could jump the 4-foot chain-link, but the little ones couldn’t or wouldn’t) Two gates are in the front, one walk-thru and one drive-thru. The other gate led into what used to be overgrown woods. (Not sure why; you really couldn’t go out there. It was so overgrown, there was nowhere TO go.) Our neighborhood makes a big “U” so there were houses on the other side of the woods (which was only about an acre wide (if that much), but you couldn’t see them because the woods were so thick. Almost every day, especially in the spring, we had a herd of deer in our yard.

Then they bulldozed the woods and built a medical building and a lovely parking lot. There’s a little bit of unused (but cleared) land in the back, but they’re already planning a second building for that. So we don’t see many deer anymore. They’ve also bulldozed and built on all the woods on the other side of the highway (we live on a street, but right off a highway/main road), so there is no longer anywhere around here for deer to safely live. So I was very surprised this morning to see that deer in the yard. It was lovely to see one after so long.

Some postive things about being pregnant

Yeah, the most obvious is that I get a sweet baby out of the deal, but one of the best things is watching Jack react to being a big brother.

In February, when we found out I was pregnant:
He keeps asking me, “How many more days before I’m a big brother?”
Last night we were watching Dexter’s Laboratory and Dexter’s parents bought him a baby toy instead of the action figure he wanted. I told Jack, “Oh. I forgot to tell you. When the baby comes, all your birthday and Christmas presents will be baby toys so you can share them with the baby.” Do you know what my sweet little boy said to that? “That’s okay. I have too many toys anyway.” Awww. I told him I was just being silly and he would still get to have big boy toys just for him after the baby comes. Then I told him I was very proud of him for being so sweet.

He’s also always coming up to me and giving me hugs. He’s always done that, but now, he also gives the baby a hug.
He sings to the baby and he had his dad buy a set of teething keys the last time they went to the toy store.
He loves feeling the baby move. The other night while we were reading bedtime stories, Jack had hiccups. The baby also got hiccups, and when I let Jack feel my belly, he thought it was so cool that they had the hiccups at the same time.
I don’t know how I was blessed enough to have such a sweet little boy, but I really hope this baby is the same way.

54 Days to go!

Here’s my warning: If you’re trying to get pregnant or you really enjoy being pregnant or you CAN’T get pregnant, you probably don’t want to read this. I’m going to come across as really ungrateful to you.

I love babies. I loved my first son from the first moment I held him. But I HATE being pregnant. I don’t remember the first time being this bad, but I was 6 years younger and working full time, so I had less time to notice all this stuff.

I want to be able to breathe again. I want to be able to bend over again. I want to be able to eat more than five bites without being full, only to be hungry again 15 minutes later. I’m tired of going the doctor every two weeks so I can sit in the waiting room for an hour for a five-minute check-up. I’m tired of having a limited wardrobe. I’m tired of being water-logged. I’m tired of going to the bathroom every 15 minutes. I’m tired of trying to come up with a name that my husband I both like. I’m tired of EVERYONE asking me what we’re going to name him. I’m tired of being tired all the time. I’m tired of people remarking on how small I am. I would rather be small than huge, but why is it that a pregnant woman’s body is suddenly everyone else’s business? I have had people say, “You look good for 7 months (or 8 months or whatever)” I don’t mind that. It’s the rude remarks I have trouble with. At least this time, I haven’t had to deal with people rubbing my stomach. Really, people. Have some respect. Being pregnant does not negate the whole “personal space” thing.

Lights on when raining

I don’t think this is a difficult concept, but apparently, it’s more complicated than I think. Several states even have laws that state that if you’re running your windshield wipers, your lights are supposed to be on. Yes, I understand you can see everything and everyone…but has it occurred to you that maybe everyone can’t see your car in the rain and road mist? Same concept applies to dusk. Then again, the people who don’t turn their lights on are probably the same ones who don’t use their turn signals, so maybe they’re just looking for a new car…

Homeschooling and the Only Child

Homeschooling and the Only Child

I got the link for this on a homeschool Yahoo group, and since I have an “only” (for now anyway), I thought I’d read the free chapter, just to see what the author had to say. From the excerpt, this seems like a good book. I don’t know the author, and I haven’t read the whole book, but you can read the free chapter on this page and form your own opinion.

Donating clothes

I have been trying to figure out what I’ll do with my maternity clothes when I can fit back into my regular clothes. I can either put them on eBay, donate them to my local food bank/clothes closet, or see if someone at church needs them. I’ll probably see if the clothes closet needs them (I used to volunteer there and still do their website and their eBay stuff so I don’t mind asking if they actually need something or if they’re “full” for the present.) If they don’t, I’ll check at church, then eBay as a final resort. Maternity clothes are so expensive and it’s hard to make money on clothes on eBay anyway, so I would rather have them go to someone who could use them around here.

Anyway, driving to church yesterday (Happy late Mother’s Day!), I found what I thought was a stain on my slacks (why is it so hard to find maternity skirts? and why are the dresses so ugly?). It must have been water because it wasn’t there later, but at the time, I thought, “Well, I guess I won’t be donating these.”

Donating your gently used clothing is a good way to bless others and reduce trash. However, if it needs to go in the trash, please put it there. There was a time in my life when I could only afford to shop at thrift stores. I was working in an office, so I needed more than the torn t-shirts and faded jeans you find at most thrift stores (at least that’s the way it used to be. It’s not quite so bad these days). I managed to find a few blouses, skirts and slacks here and there. What I NEVER found: a white blouse without a stain on the front. First, the shirts should never have been donated. If you wouldn’t wear it, why assume someone else will? It’s even worse if you’re donating to a clothes closet where people get free clothes. 99% of the people there are already swallowing their pride to ask for help for their families. (There are a few who are taking advantage and working the system, but not many.) They should at least be able to select from decent, wearable clothing.
Second, the workers should never have put stained clothing out. It’s a waste of time and space to put out clothing that no one will buy or choose anyway. My local clothes closet does take care not to put out torn, stained or unwearable clothing. Why bother?

If you think something needs to go in the trash rather than the donate box, it probably does. Even if people are desperate, they deserve to keep their dignity. Offering them stained and torn clothing does not do that.
Clothes closets and thrift stores have to pay for their trash collection, too. And whether they throw it away when they get it or after it doesn’t sell for two years, it still takes up room in their dumpsters. Shouldn’t they keep that space for trash generated there, not your house?

Fortunately, I haven’t done this personally, but several of my fellow volunteers have opened bags of donated clothes that were mildewed or otherwise ruined in some way. Oddly the people who donate this type of junk are usually the ones who make very sure they get a receipt for their donation.

Donations of wearable, gently used clothing, linens and other items are always welcomed, but donations of trash are not.