Thankful Reflection

It’s been over a year since I’ve written a post.  I’ve been busy mommin’ my little man, and working, and wifing, and all that jazz.  (He turned two this past August by the way!) I try to live in a thankful state most days while it can be tough sometimes (#firstworldproblems), and life has gotten busy with Brooks all over the place.  Thanksgiving week hit me in a way that reminded me I need to slow down and really take it all in, and that’s what this blog and writing about this awesome life does for me.

Thanksgiving week was one to remember this year.  Our family trip with Nana and Papa to Ruidoso was a huge reminder of how thankful I am that they are still around, able to make such a trip, and are in such good health especially for being in their late 80s.  Seeing Brooks play with and love on his Nana and Paper and ask for them first thing each morning we woke up was heart melting. When I think about those long five years of fertility struggles when I didn’t think Nana and Papa would ever be able to even meet a child of mine, much less make memories with him, I become even more thankful.

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Since we got back, this feeling of big picture gratitude has continued.  

Ten years with a man that probably gets tired of putting up with me, but does it anyways. #thankful  Married into a family that has accepted me: faults, crazy, and all. #thankful A son that God has blessed me with and is the most amazing thing that has ever happened to me.  #thankful

Sometimes I forget how blessed I am.  Then I see something, read something, or experience something that reminds me.  It re-adjusts my eyes and heart. It’s something that makes me stop in my tracks and sit in the happiness around me that is my life and really, truly take it all in.  

God reminds me of all he has done for me and given me and blessed me with, and I can’t help but praise and thank him.  That includes the nights Brooks still throws a party for multiple hours in the middle of the night, and we still have to get up and go to work the next day.  That includes the days when Chris irritates me for one reason or another that doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. That includes the mornings Brooks has to be woken up, and he’s cranky and refuses to put clothes on for daycare because his Spiderman jammies are the only thing he wants to wear, and I end up 10 minutes late for work.  Those hard, exhausting moments are beautiful this day in reflection.

It’s all ok.  The good, the bad.  It’s all part of my bigger story.  It’s all part of the moments I will remember with genuine love when I’m telling these stories in 30 years.

And I AM THANKFUL for them all.

I will finish this 2018 with gratitude in my heart, thankful for the little things.

~ April

What’s a girl to do?

Parenting is the most wonderful and difficult thing I could ever imagine.  Brooks is the best thing that has ever happened to me, and I’m so pumped to spend the summer with him!  Losing hours upon hours of sleep is not the most wonderful part in case you were wondering.  Especially for a bear like me.  (Insert cry face emoji here!)

As of late, my little stinker has lost interest in sleep about half the time.  I guess it could be worse, right?  I mean partying in your crib because you just learned to stand is pretty fun.  Add to that back to back double inner ear infections and now what I think is teething and you have one caffeinated momma on your hands.  Oh… did I mention that I’m pretty sure I have a sinus infection?  Summer 2017 I will conquer you yet!!!  You can’t hold me down!

I realized I am dangerously close to simply complaining here, so I’m done.  This post is really about overcoming and embracing all of those challenges and having fun.

In order to have fun despite the crazy, I must have the following:

  1.  Caffeine.  Of any sort really.  Spark and coffee are my go to bad habits of choice, but man I really want a huge Sonic Coke sometimes!!  Trying to lay off the sugar filled coke is tough, but this baby weight really loves hanging around.  I mean aren’t all mommas highly caffeinated for at least the first 18 years of their child’s life?  Surely it’s not just me.  coffee.jpg
  2. Essential Oils.  MUST have Peppermint, Lavender, Lemon, Purification, Stress Away, and Surrender. I WILL kick your butt sinus infection!

    Essential Oils
    Young Living Essential Oils
  3. Comfy Yoga Clothes.  MUST HAVE COMFY clothes.  MUST.  Whether I go to yoga or not is beside the point.  And yes, I do attend yoga on occasion.
  4.  Hat.  A cute, Pimpin’ Joy or Disney hat to be specific.  This is also a must as I may or may not be able to wash my hair on the regular this summer.  I’m sure you all will forgive me.  We have a lot of fun to accomplish, and I simply can’t be bothered with the mop that exists on the top of my head.  I’ll deal with it in August before I have to go back to work, okay?

Any other mommas out there have their own must haves for summer break?  I’m open to all new terrible habit formations at this point.  Just message me.  No really.

Here’s to hoping all mommas have a great summer!

~ April

 

First Mother’s Day

As we move quickly through May, I can reflect on my first Mother’s Day.  It took us so many years to get to this point and many difficult days and nights thinking I may never get to celebrate this day that I think it still doesn’t feel real.  Even holding and playing and snuggling my little man still feels like a dream to me.  It was a special day to look at Brooks and thank God for the blessing.  I AM BLESSED.

But Mother’s Day holds other feelings for me as well.  Feelings of loss.   Feelings of sadness.  Infertility struggles and miscarriage have left their mark even after my rainbow baby has brought me so much happiness.  Undeniable happiness.  So on Mother’s Day, I thought not just of my sweet boy in my life, but also for the baby we never had and the years of waiting and wondering what our life would look like as parents.  I thought of other women who want so desperately to be momma and are struggling and worry it will never happen.

For me, Mother’s Day will probably always be a time of reflection.  Thankfulness with a hint of sadness.  Thankfully, this journey has brought me closer to God and deeper in my faith.  I know Chris and I had to go through these struggles for a clear purpose and that only makes Mother’s Day even more special.

So here’s to walking through hardship with the Lord, making it to the other side, and the ability to enjoy His blessings daily.  I’m so thankful Jesus is our Savior and that he is with me always.

Many Blessings,

April

Life Inspired…

Life is most inspired these days.  Our journey the last several years have given me a new perspective.  Living with our little blessing, Brooks, has opened my eyes to seeing the world in a whole new way.  His smile, giggle, and inquisitive mind make the most mundane things fun.  Watching him figure out how to put his pacifier in his mouth the right way on his own just cracks me up.  Seeing him have the time of his life just jumping from the door frame is a riot.  The little things.  I realize I now can slow down and appreciate the little things.  It’s a beautiful space to be in and live in daily.

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Brooks LOVES playing!

This is not a space I ever imagined I would love so much.  I don’t think anyone can comprehend love like this until you experience it for yourself.  It’s just not something that can be explained.  Having so much fun with this little guy is the best gift day in and day out.  God made him so perfectly and wonderfully that I find myself quietly thanking Him quite often.

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Brooks inspires me to be happy…I mean really how can you not be happy around that smile…to approach life differently…to consider different perspectives…to enjoy the small moments…to think bigger…and on and on and on.

I’m sure one day something he does will annoy me, but for now I’m going to soak up all the cute little things he does every second and enjoy all he is teaching me!

April

Beautiful Whirlwind…

I haven’t posted in a while, because I’ve been in the middle of the most beautiful whirlwind of new motherhood!  And I really don’t have much to say except to share this journey with Brooks.

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I know I’m biased toward my little man, but I swear God created him to bring happiness to this world.  Brooks’ little smile can light up an entire room.  I dare you to try not to smile when he does!  Chris and I have been told so many times that he has the best smile, and we think so too!  So I can’t help but share that cutie here and with the world.  Even when we are up all night with a sick baby or feeding or rocking, this little guy will look at us and smile and then the exhaustion doesn’t matter.

The struggle as a working mom, though, is so real.  Only getting an hour or so at night during the week is difficult.  It’s a glorious hour, but never long enough.  We literally live for the weekend to spend quality time with our little man.  So I now understand the feelings working moms have battled.  As a teacher, I used to work hours upon hours at home.  Now I leave it all at work because I’m committed to spending quality time with Brooks.  Then a little guilt creeps in and I wonder if I’m doing enough for my kids at work.  Or pressure for my students to perform well on STAAR (ugh…that’s a whole other post) starts to take hold and stress begins to seep into every part of life.  Then there is bottle washing, laundry, floors to clean, dishes to wash, dinner to plan and cook, papers to grade, lessons to plan, and on and on….

I don’t think a working mom ever feels like there is a perfect balance.  I know I don’t.  You never quite feel like you are doing enough in either realm.  So I just pray!  And thank God I’m blessed to have such problems.  lol.  So I feel you working moms!

As a result… please excuse us for living in a bubble the last six months.  YES… I said SIX MONTHS!  Out little and will be six months SOON!  WHAT??!!  We’ve just be soaking up every minute we can with our little blessing.  He is so much more than we could ever have imagined and has brought so much more joy to us and others that it is just beautiful to watch.

As always, continued prayers for his life journey and our ability to parent in God’s way are always appreciated…

Blessings from the Maas family….

Motherhood, Unexplainable Love

     Being a mommy is the most wonderful feeling in the world, and one that cannot be explained with any word I’ve ever encountered.  People don’t tell you that your heart will be filled with so much love the moment you see your baby that you feel like your heart by explode and there is no way to process it all.  But even if they did try to tell you, you could never understand it anyways.  There would be no easy way to comprehend until the little bundle arrives, and you experience it for yourself.
     I’m not sure if it is because Chris and I have waited so long for this moment or if everyone feels this way.  Either way, it’s the BEST, and I cannot thank God enough every day that He has given us this beautiful gift and allowed Chris and I to be parents to this adorable boy.
     That being said, I’m not saying this isn’t hard. This is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done.  But as with all the other difficult things I have faced in my life, the tough side to mommy-hood makes this journey so much more rewarding.  The up all nights, the crying for no reason, the exhaustion, the sleeping in mommy’s arms, the first smile, the first giggle… they are all worth every moment.
     I find myself thinking about what Brooks willbe like when he is old enough to talk and express his likes and dislikes more.  What will he be like when he goes too school?  What will he be like around other people?  Will he be a social butterfly or will he have to work at making friends?  Will he like school or hate it?  Will he let me hug and kiss him even when he’s a teenager?  It’s so easy to get wrapped up in who I want him to become even at such an early age.  So I have to remind myself even now that he is his own person, and I send a prayer up to God that He help Brooks become all God wants him to be and for the guidance for Chris and I to nurture God’s plans for him.
Now that our dreams have come true and all of your prayers that you prayed for us have been answered, I ask for more prayers.  I ask to you pray for our little Brooks journey in life.  I ask that you pray he is filled with a strong desire to know and love the Lord.  I ask you to pray for his path to follow God’s plan for him, and I ask you to pray that God give Chris and I the ability and strength to guide Brooks on that path.  pray-hands
All our love,
April(& Chris)

Almost Time! 37 Weeks! Let the countdown begin! #blessed

I can’t believe that I haven’t posted since May!  I’ve updated on Facebook, but no lengthy posts.  Maybe that’s a good thing!  Ha!

Today marks 37 weeks for baby Maas!  I remember through early pregnancy just praying to make it to the 24 week mark because miracles can happen for preemies.  Then praying to make it to 30 weeks.  I really relaxed after that.  It is hard to believe we are here.  37 weeks.  Safe zone.  Brooks is moving around and constantly letting me know he’s doing well.  Sonograms always confirm he’s growing and healthy.

I cannot thank God enough for the frequent reminders that He’s got this!  I feel like my faith is strong.  I love my God.  I believe wholeheartedly in my God.  Yet He knows exactly what I have needed during this pregnancy and delivered with such love and grace.  At every sign of worry or anxiety, he gave me something to remind me that He is in control and this pregnancy is His.  It’s been a continued beautiful journey in my relationship with Him.

And so, let the countdown begin!  I feel like this is the most exciting and fun part of my pregnancy so far!  Making sure everything is ready for Brooks to come home.  Bags packed.  Nursery done.  Car seat in.  Clothes washed and put away.  Now I can enjoy the moments I wonder if my body is preparing and guessing with family when he might decide to make his debut.

Chris and I thought he might come into this world this past Saturday, but he was just teasing us.  Chris has been a trooper just going with the flow and letting me question everything and nest by giving him lots of to-dos!  He’s way more calm about it all than I am.  Shocker!  lol

We have a standing Tuesday appointment with Dr. Seeker, so I will continue with my short Facebook updates.  We anticipate Brooks to be near 7lbs tomorrow when we go and of course still have his chubby cheeks.  Hopefully the little bit of early labor I had Saturday morning means I’ve progressed a little as well, and we keep trucking along to an on-time or early baby debut!

As always, we cannot thank each and every one of you for your love, prayers, support, gifts, thoughts, and encouragement!  Brooks is one blessed and loved baby already!  God is Good!

Love,
April (& Chris)