Sometimes It’s a God Thing

Sometimes It’s a God Thing

Three times now.

Three separate occasions, I’ve had this happen to me. And I can only describe it as a “God Thing”.

Three times now, inexplicably, I’ve happened to be in the right place at the right time to be there for someone that really needed me. And the circumstances are odd.

The first time was back in 2005. My maternal grandmother had just move in with us the previous month. I was in my freshman year is college and this particular morning, my first class ended very early. Being a commuter, I decided to just drive home for a few hours before my next class. Normally, I would be on campus until at least 2pm on that day without going home. But this day, I got home right before 9:30. My mom informed me as I came in that my grandma was still asleep but that she was going to wake her up here shortly. I went in my room and got on my computer, and it wasn’t five minutes later that I heard my mom crying to my dad. She had gone in to wake up my grandma and my grandma had passed away overnight. Again, any normal day, I would have still been on campus. But because my one class ended early, I made the choice to go home, without knowing how much my mom would need me there to help comfort her. I always thought that was just a coincidence.

(my parents and I, senior year of HS 2004)

The second instance was in 2012. My husband and I decided to go bowling one evening. We had already played three games and Kenneth asked me if we could play one more. I was getting frustrated because I wasn’t bowling well, so I told him that I wanted to go home. We had just pulled onto our road when my dad called me. He wanted me to drive him to the hospital because he was having tightness in his chest that wouldn’t go away. I live five minutes away from my dad. So we got my car and raced to my dad’s, where I would end up calling an ambulance, suggested by my dad, and he would find out on the way to the hospital that he was having a heart attack. Normally, my brothers would have been home with dad, but one of them was working and the other was at a sports meeting. I could have easily told Ken we could play one more game of bowling, but I didn’t. I chose to go back home and we made it just in time for dad to call me to help him. Again, a little odd.

(my dad and i at my wedding, 2011)
The last instance happened this morning, actually. Maddie has recently just started sleeping in her crib, but is known to still wake up a few times throughout the night. I woke up this morning around 3:15, and checked the video monitor. I expected Maddie to be awake, but she was actually still fast asleep. I looked at the time and decided to use the bathroom before I went back to sleep. As I got back into bed, I checked my phone one more time to see that I had received three texts from my niece Amber. Amber is only 4 years younger than me and we are like sisters. So I read my texts. Her grandpa on her mom’s side of the family passed away at 3:03 this morning. His health had been poor for a while. He had been in hospice care at his home for a little while now. It wasn’t unexpected, but I knew my niece was devastated. Maddie didn’t wake me up at 3:15. I woke up for no real reason. But I was awake when Amber needed me. She needed her “sister” to know what happened and to be there to comfort her. Again, very random moment.

(Me and my niece Amber, a few years ago)

I don’t know about all of you, but I’m about certain that all three of these moments are what I call a “God Thing”. Nothing can explain any of these experiences. What were the odds that I would happen to be available for all three occasions? I can’t explain it. I don’t even want to try. I just know that God is always there for me and He is always there for His children. The people involved in all of these situations needed me and somehow I was there to be there for them. When I think about this, it’s enough to give me chills.

Can anyone else relate?? I would love to hear some similar stories!!

First Year Reflections

First Year Reflections

This past Saturday, my baby girl turned one year old. It’s hard for me to even fathom that 366 days had gone by and that we were leaving the infant part of her life behind, marching straight into the toddler years. Maddie had a wonderful birthday party with her favorite people and it definitely showed how loved she really is. 

As her momma, this birthday hit me about as hard as I thought it would. As tough as she could be at times, it was still hard for me to think about her getting older. I cannot stress enough how fast this first year went. People will tell you that all the time, usually when your tired and sleep deprived and you don’t want to hear it, but it’s so true. 

So, as we close this chapter of my girl’s life, I have a few reflections about everything.

  • Motherhood came very easy for me, thank God. But as easy as it was at times, there were other times where I would just bawl because I felt like I was screwing everything up. My husband had to constantly remind me of how wonderful of a job I was doing. And even that didn’t make me feel better. Motherhood is one of the hardest jobs I’ve ever had, but it has also been one of the most rewarding.
  • Nothing compares to seeing your baby smile or laugh for the first time. I’m fairly certain it can cure just about anything. 
  • Nothing is as cool as seeing your baby understand something that you’ve taught them. Maddie knows what a dog is and points them out when she sees one. Just tonight, I asked where her belly was, and she pointed to it. Maddie is wicked smart.
  • Breastfeeding is hard. I commend anyone that can do it. I also praise mommas that have to use formula. I made it breastfeeding for 12 months and there were times when I was sure I would have to stop, but I made it. It wasn’t easy and I cried a lot. But I’m glad I was able to do it. And when I have another kid, I plan to do it again.
  • Being a stay-at-home mom is hard too, especially with a baby. My house went to crap, my dogs didn’t get a lot of attention, everything kind of suffered. But I would rather have a messy home and be able to cuddle my baby whenever I want. I definitely respect my mom even more for being a SAHM. Your job is never done, and you don’t get paid for it. It was always my dream to be able to stay home with my babies and I’m very blessed that God decided I could do that.
  • Maddie, even when she throws her little tantrums, is still my favorite thing in the entire world and I thank God every day for blessing me with the privilege of being her mama. It’s a privilege that I don’t take lightly. And I cannot wait to see what God has in store for her life.

How My Spouse is my Best Friend

How My Spouse is my Best Friend

I wasn’t able to get on and post yesterday for Valentine’s Day, so here is my post about my wonderful husband.

Usually for Valentine’s Day, and most other holidays actually, Kenneth will get me a card and write me a letter to go along with it. They are usually very sweet letters and they usually tug at my heart strings. So yesterday, I assumed he would write me another letter, and he did. But this time, it meant a lot more.

He wrote me a letter talking about how, unlike me, he didn’t have a lot of friends growing up, and he hadn’t really had a best friend. That was until he met me. He talked about how God filled that void in his life when he brought me into his life and how I not only became his best friend, but the love of his life.

As I sit here and reread the letter, he actually lists things that everyone should do for their spouse, their best friend. Here’s what I take away from his letter:

  1. You should invest time and love in one another’s lives. A relationship will not grow if you don’t put effort into it. I can’t expect Kenneth to listen to me go on and on about my day if I don’t allow him to do the same thing to me. If I ignored everything he said, he would feel as though I didn’t care and if I didn’t care, then I wouldn’t be invested in our relationship. Even if I only see him for a few minutes in the afternoon, I always ask him how his day at work went. I want him to know that I care about what he does every day and any time I get to spend with him is precious to me.
  2. You should want to get to know your spouse and know them better than anyone. I mean, you’re married to them for goodness sake. It would be odd if I didn’t know what Ken liked and disliked, especially after being married now for over five years. And it would be even more odd if I didn’t actually go out of my way to figure that stuff out. It would be like living with a stranger. And I surely don’t want anyone else, even his family, to know him better than I do. I take pride in knowing him as well as I do. As his wife, I should know just about everything about him and what I don’t know, I should strive to find out. That can relate to the first point, investing time in him.
  3. Sometimes, you just need to listen. I don’t always need to give him my advice on what I think he should do. Sometimes, all he wants is for me to listen and let him rant about whatever it is that is bothering him. He does the same for me. And sometimes that’s more than enough.
  4. Communication is key. Sometimes you can’t just listen. Sometimes you need to talk, whether it be about a problem you have or if it’s just talking about what your day was like. I love telling Kenneth about my day when he gets home from work and typically, he loves to hear about it. If you have a problem, even if it’s with your spouse, you HAVE to talk about it. If you don’t, it will fester until it becomes something bigger and worse than before. You should be able to talk about anything with your spouse and not be judged.
  5. You should share experiences together. As a couple, there are a lot of experiences we’ve shared together. The most recent, of course, was becoming parents. I obviously wouldn’t want to (and really couldn’t) experience that without him. Another example is that we just took our first family vacation to Disney World with Maddie. I couldn’t imagine doing that without him and I’m sure he would say the same thing about me.
  6. You should support and motivate each other. Whenever I need some extra motivation, he is the first person I go to. You should always feel that your spouse is your biggest fan. Kenneth always has my back and helps me feel better about myself. I don’t have the best self-esteem, but he continues to lift me up and tries to help me see myself the way he sees me. When he was having a hard time during his full marathon, he called me to get some extra motivation. When he was almost finished with the race, he wanted to know exactly where we were, because he needed to see me and Maddie for an extra push. Every spouse should feel that way about their partner.
  7. You should pray for each other. Even before we met, I was already praying for him. Kenneth prayed for me as well, even when we didn’t know each other. Now, we pray for each other daily. I always pray that he has a good and safe day at work, while he prays that I have a good and safe day at home with Maddie. There is no greater sign of love than having someone pray for you. You care enough to talk to God about someone. What could be better than that?

I know how blessed I am. God knew what he was doing when he brought Kenneth into my life. Do we always get along? No way. But what matters is that we care enough and love each other enough to work through anything that is thrown at us and pray for each other every day. I thank God every day for Kenneth. God made Kenneth for me, and I wouldn’t have him any other way.

Anything you would add to my list?? Let me know! I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day!!

My Fitness Journey Begins

My Fitness Journey Begins

Our body is a temple, and it should be treated as such. 

As an adult, my lowest weight was 133 pounds after I graduated high school. I’m all of 5 feet, 3 inches tall, so my weight has no where to go. After my mom passed away, I ate out more often and my weight went up. I had gotten that under control and actually had gotten my weight down to 139, but then I got lazy. And then I got pregnant a year later. 

At my heaviest during pregnancy, I weighed 207. That was a week before I delivered. After we came home, I lost a lot of water, and some weight, but only got down to 170. I still have a ways to go before I even get back to my pre-pregnancy weight of 155.

That is why I am a part of a coaches challenge group on Facebook. Two years ago this coming June, I started my fitness journey with Beachbody and haven’t looked back. I’ve had successes and setbacks, but I love everything about it. The program that I saw the most success with is called the 21 Day Fix. With that program, I lost 8 pounds and a decent amount of inches. My husband lost 16 pounds during the 21 day period. It’s an amazing program! It has workouts for every day of the week and an easy to follow meal plan filled with healthy foods. 

So that is what I’m going to be starting, along with getting back on Shakeology, my superfood nutrition. I’m a picky eater and Shakeology helps me make sure I’m getting all the nutrients I need in my day. Plus, when I’m on Shakeology, I feel healthier, more awake, and I’m less likely to eat junk, namely sweets. Also, I rarely get sick when I’m drinking my shake everyday.

So starting Friday, I will be writing once a day on here, along with other random posts, but I will be documenting my journey through this challenge group and share my results and successes at the end!!

God gave me this body and I have to start treating it better. Plus, I want to be healthy and happy for my baby girl. This is important and I have to stick with it.

If anyone wants to join me, please email me at rachelfountain@oneblessedlife.com and I can give you some info on what I’m doing exactly and how to get started!!

Co-Sleeping? 

Co-Sleeping? 

I’m going to be very honest with you. I never, ever thought I would even consider co-sleeping with Maddie. While I was pregnant, I was certain that she would stay in a bassinet initially and then transition to a crib at some point.

Easier said than done, right?

To begin with, Maddie didn’t like sleeping in the bassinet we had received as a gift. It was an awesome bassinet! I could play my iPod on it, it vibrated, and had a mobile that spun around. But for some reason, she hated laying flat. So we ended up having her sleep in the pack and play until she got too big to sleep in it.

Maddie in her bassinet when we first came home.

Maddie in her pack and play.

So fast forward, we eventually started getting her to sleep in her crib. The only problem was I was nursing, and her room is on the other side of the house. So what would happen is, I would hear her in the monitor, go feed her, and try to get her back to sleep. But I was tired too. So time to time, I would just bring her back in our room with me and put her in bed with me. That eventually would turn into her just sleeping in our bed with us. The very thing I thought I would never do, I did. But I ended up loving having her with me. It was comforting to both her and me.

Now, at almost a year, I’m trying to transition her back to her crib, which is proving to be rather difficult. But that’s not the point of this post. I’m going to give my thoughts on this whole co-sleeping thing. 

  • Some people swear by it and encourage it. When I was trying to transition her around 6 months to her crib, some people encouraged me while others told me to just keep her in bed with me. It’s one of those topics that people are either for or against. People will fight about this topic. It’s all about your preference though. Don’t do anything you’re not comfortable with.
  • I wouldn’t do it until the baby is able to roll over both directions. That’s a big part of the argument against co-sleeping. The danger that they will roll over and get stuck there, ultimately leading to suffocation. That was a HUGE fear of mine, so I made sure she was able to maneuver and roll around. That way, if she did get on her belly, she could roll back over.
  • Not that I’m recommending that everyone does it, but it definitely became more convenient for me since I was breastfeeding. It’s much easier to just reach beside me and grab her as opposed to getting up, waking my dogs in the process of walking to her room, feeding her, trying to get her to go back to sleep and being exhausted. 
  • My husband, who was against it initially, is the reason we still have her in our bed. He started complaining initially and so I bought a brand new baby monitor and had him install it. I was ready to start transitioning her again! And when it was time for bed, he looked at me with Maddie in his arms and said “Aww, but I’ll miss her”. I’m sure I had a blank look on my face when he said that. The same person who complained suddenly wanted her with us. 

Would I do it again with our next baby? I’m not sure. Maddie is such a good baby and she is very attached to me. So I’m honestly not sure what I will do the next time around. Every kid is different, so I think we will have to see how things go. Would I openly recommend it? Probably not. Especially when the baby is very young. I feel like it is too dangerous at the newborn stage. I honestly think waiting until they can roll over is a big thing. Other than that, just make sure that your bed is a safe environment and don’t let them sleep with toys or thick blankets. Read up on things to avoid and thing to keep SIDS from happening. This is very important information to know! That is something I made sure to do before Maddie even was born. Once you do that, you can make a better informed choice on sleep.

What are your thoughts on co-sleeping? Yes or no?? Pros and cons?? Comment me and let me know!!