Oh Baby!

Baby

I’m blogging again and as my motherly nesting instincts set in so comes the urgency to write. Yes! We are pregnant with baby #4 and are due in early February!!

Baby

Pregnancy such a gift and it becomes even more so each time. This pregnancy has been easy on me so far. The first trimester was sluggish (although I don’t know any other way at this point) and came with lots of food aversions, mainly in the form of meat. We are now nearing week 18 and I am feeling the usual urge to sort, file, and organize everything in sight. I dearly wish that I could have this same gumption when not pregnant!!

I have a few things in the works for this fall and many many blog posts to write that have been spinning in my head for some time now. God keeps calling me to be more bold in my faith and to share it. This past summer I was stunned with the news of SCOTUS and everything happening with Planned Parenthood to the point of being speechless. After considerable amounts of prayer I continue to feel that He is calling me to bear witness and to share my faith and how we live our faith as a family at home in hopes to help others do the same.

I hope you all have been well… I have missed writing here dearly! Is there anything new in your corner of the world?

XO Janalin

2015!

2015 Project 52:1

2015 Project 52:1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014 was a transition year for me. We added a third child to our family and I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t easy for me. I’ve always had some sort of ‘flying by the seat of my pants’ talent…. if there is such a thing. But all of the sudden this third person came with some sort of maternal memory loss, exponentially larger messes, and compiled frustrations to do anything outside of the house. Honestly I was embarrassed. I remembered how two children were so easy for me to handle. Now, getting out of the house was often more of a chore than I wanted to bother with. I was frustrated with the way our house looked, with my own dis-disheveled appearance, and children that didn’t seem to understand that when I said it was time to get your shoes on that I meant now- not tomorrow. I ashamedly had more than one mommy temper tantrum.

During those moments it was like an out of body experience for me. It was almost like I was watching what was happening at the same time. And I didn’t like it one bit. I knew the mama I wanted to be and I so very much wasn’t being her. I knew this was a breaking point and that something had to change.

I made a point to try to figure out how to better manage our life. I wrote down what I wanted to do and who I wanted to be. And I could see that the reason I was two steps forward and three steps back was because I was giving too much of myself to everyone else.

As we start 2015 be sure that you carve out the time needed for you. I wish that someone had told me to do so seven years ago. Take time to care for and refresh yourself because you are worthy. Because you are important. I am so thankful for His graces. And for fresh beginnings. And that He who loved us so much that He gave His life gives us a new chance. Every. Single. Day.

God Bless you Lovelies! All the best in 2015!! xo

PS- Yes you see another Project 52! And even though I didn’t even come close to finishing my ‘Motherhood is’ book for last year I am going back this month and finishing it out. :) This year I chose ‘Right now I love’. Join me and link up in the comments if you want to!

2015 Day Planner for Moms

The 2015 Janalin Hood Day Planner is designed for moms who want to be intentional with their goals.

Did you read my last post about the woman at the library that told me I needed to get up earlier? I have spent some time thinking about her ideal, and instead… I am going to embrace something else.

Intention. That’s my plan in 2015.

2014 brought many great goals for me. And I wrote them down and attempted to keep up with them. But as with many ‘resolutions’ mine didn’t hold the year through.

One aspect of my goals last year was to keep our schedules more organized and I bought a planner. I used the Whitney English Day Designer. It was beautiful. I loved using it and it really helped me keep our family’s schedules on track. But… it was more for a working professional. I felt like I needed some help focusing on the bigger ideas of motherhood and not just a daily time keeper.

So through the year I made notes on what I needed to have to be at my best as a mom. First off I needed a mission. And goals in writing of what I want to achieve. And if you are like me you need a breakdown (and deadlines) to make sure the goals are completed. I needed TO DO lists. And I needed focus each day to complete a few things.

Because the hardest part of being a mom is not losing sight of the big picture, right? I know I have so many things that I want to accomplish but it seems unattainable because I don’t have hours at a time to designate to a task.

So, without further ado… here is the 2015 planner I have been working on the past year.

The 2015 Janalin Hood Day Planner is designed for moms who want to be intentional with their goals.

Pretty covers! We had to change from the original navy background because of binding colors. We did increase the size to 8×10!

A planning section begins the book! Ten pages to define what you want to accomplish, break down goals into steps, planning a steady rhythm-like day, and more.

Monthly View

 

 

 

 

 

 

The monthly spread has a column for notes on the left side. The monthly view notes all Federal Holidays. And finally the right column is where you make your dreams into plans- designating tasks, deadlines, and incentives to make things happen in 2015!

Week at a Glance

 

 

 

 

 

 

The weekly spread has your entire week before you for optimal planning. Monday through Friday are designed to help you get things done. Your day starts with designating the top three things that need to get done today. Then there are reminders of daily intentions (faith, love, fitness, phoning a friend, and reading). Finally your day starts with sections for morning and afternoon with spaces for lunch and dinner plans. It is no coincidence that there are four lines with check boxes for morning and afternoon! Plan on tracking the water you are drinking along with your day. Saturday and Sunday are light…. take a break and enjoy your family! Each week also has a quote or verse to keep you inspired.

At the end of the planner you will find a section for notes.

I will be photographing a hard copy next week! Yay! The planners will be ready to ship January 9th. The first printing will be January 2015-December 2015. But we will take ‘custom’ orders that allow you to choose what month you would like the planner to start, followed by 12 full months of monthly and weekly pages.

This year I will be sharing my mission and my intentions with you all and will blog about them. I’ve got some lofty goals on the paper now and I can’t wait to share them with you!!

The Etsy shop is live!  The link to your planner is here! https://www.etsy.com/listing/216682279/2015-janalin-hood-planner-pre-order?ref=shop_home_active_1

“Just get up earlier”

Just get up earlier

“Just get up earlier.”

That was the advice that I got from a woman at the library today. And I know she’s right. I could be a little bit more put together… my day less frenzied… if I would get up earlier. I know I should. But the honest to God truth is-

I’m. Exhausted.

And when you’re exhausted… when you haven’t slept the whole night in over a year… When you feel like you’re taking continual naps… the idea of an alarm clock is impossible.

In these last several months of exhaustion I’ve been blessed beyond measure. I have a wonderful husband, three healthy children, and so much family to be thankful for. Look at him.  This baby, who isn’t so little anymore.

 

Just get up earlier

 

This wonderful gift from God…is growing up on me all too fast. I’ve been making sure I take time to marvel in him. Marveling at every new thing that he does. Marveling at the things that make him laugh and the number of wrinkles that I have to wash in his legs. And on the days that I’m exhausted and I feel like are so long… I look at this wonderful gift.

 

These fleeting moments… I know how lucky I am. Many mamas that don’t get this chance. And so in this season I will be thankful. I look for the brightness in each day and I see the joy in the face of my babies. And for that Lord, I thank you.

Our Birth Story

Every Good and Perfect Gift

Our Birth Story  |  www.janalinhood.comThe day began like any typical day when you are being induced. I was up only 4 hours after going to bed the night before. And although I knew I needed more than four hours of sleep prior to such a big day I could not let the home duties rest. Yes, the bags had been packed for weeks but the laundry pile was bothering me… as was the fingerprints on the front door and the dishes in the sink. I did all I could, minus putting the laundry away and called it a night.

The next thing I knew the alarm was not so kindly waking me for my shower. I stumbled into the hot steam and pondered the coming days events. Being induced is a strange thing to do. I remembered my last pregnancy and the induction and the feelings were the same. Once we had arrived at the emergency entrance I froze… didn’t want to go in and submit myself to what was to come.

We got settled and started the pitocin just a little before 9am. It was strange being all alone in the room with the man I married seven years ago. We really hadn’t been alone, totally alone, like this since our last baby was born two and a half years ago. Instead of having awkward conversations wondering what to talk about we enjoyed one anther’s company and the moments of silence as well.

By 11am my doctor came in and broke my water. I was dreading this part, as last time it seemed that the water would never stop, but it was no big deal this time. More pitocin and harder and harder contractions followed. By 2pm I was having a hard time breathing during contractions and was ready for the epidural. I was 4 centimeters.

The epidural was expected to go without incident as it had in the past. I remember looking forward to seeing the man with the medical cart more than any other person on the hospital staff. And I welcomed him with the same warmth that I had the previous two times I had delivered. Only this time it was different. Something went wrong. Possibly the local anesthetic they gave me before the epidural was inserted didn’t work… we don’t know… but all I know is that the insertion of that needle was the most intense pain I have had during any of the three deliveries I have had. Julie, my labor and delivery nurse, was compassionate and helpful. Holding my hand, wiping my tears, and not showing any sign of flight when I couldn’t keep from screaming in her ear. I seriously was contemplating changing my mind about the epidural as it took him two times and what seemed like an eternity to get it in place. But he got it done and I was relieved to be done with it.

A few hours went by in the late afternoon and I dozed while Vic patiently waited watching the baby’s monitor and the rate of my contractions. We were estimating a 6pm delivery since I had been 4cm at 2pm, but just after 4:00pm Julie checked me again and I was a very loose 8cm and totally effaced. It was going to be go-time VERY shortly. Julie started to quickly gather the things that she needed for delivery and had other staff bringing the newborn things in and I could tell that I was going to be ready soon. She had called the doctor and he arrived just at the time I was ready to push. We waited for a good contraction and I pushed for a series of two full 10 seconds, and then an additional second or two… and he was born.

Our baby boy was silent following birth and I was scared. I asked if he was okay and Dr Snider assured me he was. Daddy declined to cut the cord, saying that that was what he paid the man in charge to do. Everyone laughed and I finally got to hear our baby boy cry. Relief. They gently wiped him with a towel and placed him on my chest. This was the first time I had immediately held a newborn after delivery and was in heaven. Our newest son looked just like his brother and it was surreal thinking that we were now a family of five. I then watched as they took our little man to the table in the corner of the room and took weighed, measured, and foot printed him.

I was so very thankful everything with the epidural ended up okay. We were able to leave the hospital the following day with a healthy baby and recover at home.

The tears, the pain, the dollars, that go into having a child are so trivial in comparison to the joy they bring in return. I am on my knees with a grateful heart knowing that my greatest legacy is wrapped around the little souls of my children. Perpetually praying for wisdom and guidance to grow and shape our new son. Because these years that some call the hardest are indeed difficult and full of sacrifices. But sacrifices that in turn show us how He loves us. May this child, this gift, be pleasing to You Lord.

Lingerie for the Modern Mom

Lingerie for the Modern Mom

Have you looked at the calendar?  One month until Valentine’s Day!!!  YAY!  Even though I don’t get real serious about the commercialization of the holiday I adore anything that has to do with hearts, pink, love, and emotion.  Oh yes, and chocolate.  I will buy some of that!!!  For the kids, you know :)

Lingerie for the Modern Mom

But more so than the day of Valentines, I am trying to focus February on my husband and our relationship.  It is SO EASY to get comfy, especially after kids, in the lingerie department.  You hear me sweatpants?  You are not going to be a staple anymore!!   In an effort to encourage all of us to take a quick evaluation of our unmentionables drawer I have pulled a few ideas that might give you enough time to do a quick update to your evening wardrobe before the big day next month.  And while I’m all for the super sexy lingerie that is just for hubby’s eyes, the underlying goal of this post is to help you find some cute items that you can wear around the house- in front of the kids- and whomever might stop at the door unexpectedly.

Lingerie for the Modern Mom

Chemise2e3723307b12ed5f20a0b4e417804107Satin PJs

Lingerie for the Modern Mom

Slip Gown

Lingerie for the Modern Mom

Camisole and Pant Set

If you have a favorite place to shop please link in the comments!  The more the merrier and we will all help one another out!  Happy shopping!  XO

Realistic Expectations

Comparison is the Thief of Joy

All of the pressures in the world for women to get it all ‘right.’ We have to have perfectly Pinnable birthday parties, home décor to the nines, fabulous homemade dinners on the table at 6pm every night, hair-makeup-and wardrobe that any fashionista would admire, and professional careers to show we can indeed juggle it all.

Surprisingly, after I gave up the professional interior design career I loved I found the pressures of modern day feminism begin to weigh on me. I mean… I stayed at home all day and had all this ‘extra’ time on my hands… why didn’t my life look as I thought it should?

Some of the other mom’s that I would follow through social media would make it look so easy to get it all done. The truth of the matter was that I was only seeing into the part of their lives that they wanted me to see.  Be wary of how much merit you put into social media: When you do that you are comparing your highs and lows to others’ highs. And that comparison- in any aspect of your life- is the thief of joy.

 Grace  |  Hebrews 4:16  #scripture art

Until one day I had a wake up call. A big one. One of these super-moms that I greatly looked up to posted that she in fact couldn’t get it all done. That she didn’t really have it all together like she had led her followers to believe. She admitted that while she would be greatly productive in several areas of her life that she didn’t have time to shower but a few times a week. !!Gasp!! I know there are days when showering is impossible, but that is one area that I would have never imagined she would deem unimportant. Relief. I felt forgiven.

The truth is that we all are given 24 hours in each day. How we spend them is up to us… when we take on an extra task something else has to give. In the end it is the relationships that we have in our lives that count. In the end it’s the people that matter. So today I write to you with a sink full of dishes, still in my pajamas, with trash that needs taken out and it’s ok. Because my girl tells me that I’m the “best mama ever” and have a little boy that loves to tell me how much he misses me when I leave him for even the shortest time. Soak it up, embrace the little things, and give yourself some grace. Because that, my dear, is what life is all about.

 xo Janalin