Friday, November 14, 2014

One Year of Life

And so on this day, November 14, 2014 my precious little bundle of joy turns one year old today. This year has gone by quickly and slowly all at once.  Many nights have seemed long, and many days seemed short. One day it seemed he would always need to be held or propped up, then suddenly, quite wobbly, he sat on his own. Then scooted, then crawled, then cruised, now he walks! We are still waiting to hear him talk intelligible words, though he does love to babble incessantly, I am convinced that he is convinced he truly is talking. Though he does communicate. He says some warbled sounds and points to something, and momma knows he is asking what is that? He nervously laughs and he is needing reassurance. And even in a look, we communicate. Oh yes, even in the arching of his back when momma wants him to sit in her lap, or sit in his high chair, that communicates defiance!

                                 November with Daddy                                December with mommy

I am constantly amazed that I get this beautiful privilege of watching a life develop before my eyes. It is astounding just how much a person changes in this first one short year. God's handiwork is quite wonderful to behold. As my father in law says a lot, they understand far more than most people give babies credit for. When you see them as an eternal soul, a person made in the image of God, it is much easier to look at them and see a little intelligent person, not some tiny little being who can't understand until much older. No, my little man is a covenant child of God and although I still slip into "baby talk" voice to him sometimes, for the most part I strive to talk to him as such. For it is a great joy to be a catalyst in helping him learn about God's world around him. To read to him, to sing to him, to hug him, hold him, to talk to him, to show him things, to include him in my every day activities rather than view him as a hindrance to my daily affairs. He surprises me daily and it is quite a delight to see him discover this world.

                                        January with mommy                                 February

As I ponder the deep love I have for my son, I often recount in my days prior to being a mother how I honestly could not understand just how a mom can love her child so much.  I mean, sometimes it looked like they were inconvenient, disobedient, unpleasant, annoying and a hassle! Well, as the saying goes, "From the outside looking in you can't understand it, and from the inside looking out you can't explain it." I was not prepared for how love for my son would affect me so deeply, truly, honestly, and sweetly. God made me a mother when gifting me with this child. And through this child, I have changed so much. I am not the same person I was a year ago when my son was birthed. Being a mother has sanctified me in precious ways. I am more organized, more disciplined, and altogether less selfish than before he entered into this world.  I truly believe marriage and child(ren) are two of God's biggest sanctifying tools around! I love my son more and more as I get to know him better. For all the labor, birth, and other books I read to prepare for his entrance into this world and after, I was wholly unprepared for the love that filled my heart. Some people describe it as "love at first sight", but for me, it wasn't like that at all. It was pure shock that this tiny little person just came out of me! And I think I was in shock for days, but every time I held him on my chest and in my arms, it melted my heart. Every time I got to hold him to my breast and watch him eat, I was filled with wonder at the beauty of God's design that little old me could feed a a sweet baby and literally nourish him! Every time he cried my heart was seized with concern and trying to figure out his needs. As the days wore on, my love just grew and grew. It was altogether the most humbling realization that this tiny little life depended on me for his every need, how helpless he was apart from me. It made me want to strive even harder to care for him to the best of my ability knowing that he was entrusted to my (and Samuel's) care. He is my precious child.
 March with Daddy

April together

Not only has my love for my son been a cherished gift, but the love that has grown between my beloved and I has grown, deepened, and sweetened through this little life.  Laboring for hours and having my husband supporting me through out the whole ordeal made me love him more. Looking at our child for the first time together made me love him more.  The way he selflessly changed every single diaper the first week made me love him more.  The way he carried me when I was too exhausted, weak, and tired, made me love him more.  The way he tenderly, patiently, and lovingly cared for me and our son in those first precious days made me love him even more. And as this year has passed, seeing him with our son makes me love him more.  Seeing our son cling to his daddy's neck melts my heart into a puddle of pure love. Day in and day out, we are not a perfect family, but through this family God is perfecting us and sanctifying us to be more like His Son. I would not change this year for anything. I have learned more about my Father's love through being a mother. I expect to learn a great deal more.

May, meeting his great grandma and grandpa (and pictured above, Sam Allison, Peter Sam, Allison, Samuel Allison, and 2nd Samuel Allison)

                                    May                                                            July

It has been a blessed year adjusting, learning, growing, changing, and being together. I would not trade being a mother caring for her child at home for anything.

  Meeting PaPa Leonard in June (Great-Grandpa)

So I am wishing a very happy and blessed birthday to my son! May the Lord Jesus bless you this whole year through.

                                          My dashing little fellow in September       October with grandma

Friday, November 7, 2014


Today I read these words,
"The fact is that nothing evades men more, when they search for it, than happiness. Happness cannot be a goal in itself. It is a byproduct of other things. When we do our work well and find it rewarding, we are happy. When we are godly and honorable in our relationships with our loved ones and others, it adds to our happiness. Happiness is not a goal but a payoff for work well done towards a worthy goal." R.J. Rushdoony.
Upon pondering these words and life as of lately, I smiled contentedly at the truth I had just read.  So much happiness has filled my heart as of late, so grateful for the many blessings in my life.  Work being one of them. It is piercing to the heart to read how we are to be self-disciplined and not idle when spending time in the Word of God. Yes, I continue to grow in this area, but sometimes it seems painfully slow. It is constant to be redeeming the time before me. So when I am working in my home and productively having something to show for it, my heart is content and happy. So let me share some of our adventures as of late, with pictures to prove it.

I love applesauce. I have always loved it. I rarely got it as a child, and I never knew why. So as an adult running the grocery and meal affairs in our home I tend to gravitate toward it. But wow, has anyone seen how pricey organic apple sauce is?! And so last year I made a batch and froze it. I intended to do the same again this year and ordered 20 lbs. of apples only for them to not arrive! Horrors. So I ordered a different kind and they arrived. Relief! I paid roughly $25 for 20 lbs. of organic apples, plus some jars to freeze them in. It made 9 jars each holding around 3 1/2 cups of deliciousness. An afternoon well worth it, plus 2nd Samuel was mighty cute throughout the process.

Beginning the process, Step 1, chop up the apples and put them in the roaster oven.

Step 2, get the toddler (!) who just woke up from his nap to help and taste apples.

(I think he thoroughly enjoyed helping, don't you?)

Step 3, fill the roaster oven with water, turn on to 350/400 degrees and let them cook.
An hour or two later (stirring during this time to prevent burning)  they should be done.
These are fluffy apples ready for saucing.

Step 4, get an applesaucer thing. I borrowed this cool one that attaches to your counter.
It's really easy to set up, use, and even has a sieve that keeps out the junk.

Step 5, feed hungry and curious boy applesauce that has cooled.
Be sure to watch him though, he may get impatient and start
feeding himself when you aren't looking!

Step 6, fill jars and let them cool. If freezing in glass be sure to leave enough head
space or else they will bust and crack open. Just saying. Once cooled off,
put them in freezer.

We also made some Kombucha:

This was the end product. It turns out my boy enjoyed kombucha at his grandparents house. So I figured it was time to get brewing again.

We already have finished one jar of apple sauce, one week later. Which means if we keep up this rate we will be done with apple sauce in two months. Um.. Well that's no good. Looks like I may need to order more apples while I can, if I can.

Next year I would like to experiment making our own apple cider and turning it into hard apple cider. Doesn't that sound fun?!

Another non-photographed task Samuel and I enjoy doing together is baking bread. The last few times I've made it I set him on the counter with me and tried to interest him while I am kneading the dough. Well last time he finally plunged into the fun and slapped it, squeezed it, and tried to eat it. Sorry, I'm one of those mom's who is not giving her kid grains yet (not sorry), so I didn't let him eat it. He is currently napping so I am waiting until he wakes up to begin the process again today (Yay for afternoon naps!).

Yes, it is very satisfying and adds to my happiness to provide healthy food and beverages for my family. (: