6 Tips For Surviving the Fussy Baby Stage

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You mothers have been on my heart lately, and I just need to write down my thoughts.

You know who you are. I’m not writing to every mother here. Just the ones with the extra fussy babies. The ones that screamed their first of year life for no reason. The ones who really might not be allergic or have a medical problem.

They’re just fussy.

6 Tips for Surviving the Fussy Baby Stage

You get tired of hearing advice, and you get tired of hearing that it’s going to get better. Because in the moment, you don’t want to think about enduring another minute of screaming, let alone another month or two.

I’m here to tell you…there is hope.

I’m finally feeling like I’m reaching the light at the end of the tunnel. Sophia is 20 months old now, and while she still is a super energetic toddler with a scream that can shatter glass¬†it’s gotten better. We finally feel like we have some answers.

Sophia is the most talkative out of all of our children at this age. She also seems to be the smartest. Not that our other children were not smart, but Sophia just is extremely alert and aware of everything going on around her. A few people told us that once she would be able to talk, things would get better.

I didn’t believe them (I had gotten to the point of losing hope of the screaming ever stopping!), but it’s really true. Now that she has been able to communicate with us, life has gotten easier.

She sleeps all night long. She takes a nap every day, she plays with her little people toys and wooden blocks. She loves to get into absolutely everything, and climbs on whatever she possibly can.

My fussy baby that turned happy!

While she still prefers me over everyone, she will happily go to Sean most of the times, and sometimes lets her brothers and sisters hold her.

While this sounds horrible to say, we actually enjoy her now.

Don’t get me wrong, we always loved her. We held her constantly, kissed on her like crazy, and prayed for her. But it’s really hard to enjoy having a screaming baby in the house. Now we all laugh at her adorable toddler ways, and find so much pleasure in watching her blossom into a little girl.

Tips for Surviving

Take Time For Yourself

When you have a baby that screams all the time, you must take some time to be by yourself. Run to the library to pick up your books on hold, go to the grocery story, take a bath, or go for a walk while your husband watches the baby. I know it’s hard to get away if you are breastfeeding, but try to go right after a feeding. There have been many times that my husband has stayed in the van while I’ve run in the store, just for 15 minutes to feel like an adult.

It’s All About The Baby

When you have a fussy baby, it really is all about the baby. You can’t ignore the screaming, or zone it out. There are times to just lay the baby down when you can’t handle it one more second, but it takes many hours of rocking the baby, walking and bouncing, singing, and feeding the baby. When you have other children, it’s important that they have one parent still there, doing family devotions and spending time with them. Our five older children survived this time, and have even said they want another sibling someday, but honestly nobody is ready for that still. ūüôā

Fill Up Your Own Cup – Receive Encouragement from Others

It’s so important to receive encouragement during this time. You can’t keep giving to your fussy baby and your family without receiving something yourself. There were (and honestly still are) many Sundays where I felt like I received very little out of the sermons, because of tending to Sophia. Several times she was screaming so much, I asked my sister to take me home during the service. We live really close to church, so that is an easy option for me. However, my husband is currently the pastor of our church! I’ve felt very disconnected at times, but I constantly remind myself it’s an extended season, not forever.

The times I’ve had to come home from church, I lay Sophia down to sleep and turn on a sermon or a podcast for moms. By the time my family comes home I’m uplifted and ready to face the rest of the day! Read any book by Sally Clarkson if you need a boost of mothering encouragement.

Use Paper Plates!

This isn’t the time to be supermom. Think of this time as an extended 4th trimester. You need to still take it easy, grab a nap, and use those paper plates! I’ve just started weaning myself off of paper plates, but still keep them on hand for those crazy times.

Be Prepared for Skeptics

Sophia seems to always be better out in public. There have been times I’ve even doubted myself, and wondered if it’s really as bad as I think it is because others just don’t see it. My husband is quick to tell me it *is* bad, and that our other babies never did cry like this. Just be prepared that others might not understand, because they just won’t see it.

Don’t Forget About Your Marriage

You are still a wife. Having a fussy baby is incredibly hard on a marriage. Sophia had to sleep right next to me for months, snuggled up where she could touch me. If Sean rolled over in bed it would wake her up, so he ended up sleeping on the couch for months. That sounds fun, right? It was so hard, but we did survive! Try to grab any peaceful moment in the evening to snuggle with your husband, even do it during family time in the evening with the children! I found if I could even just get some snuggle time in, it helped me feel more like a wife and I could keep going.

The days are so hard. The months can roll into a year, and before you know it, your baby is becoming a toddler. I hope that your days do get easier. I don’t think they become more peaceful, because that baby turns into a very busy toddler! But the day you finally wake up and realize your baby isn’t screaming as much is a blessed day. You stop and take a deep breath and realize you are going to make it. Life will never return to what it was before the baby, but you are going to find a new normal!

***Don’t miss out on a new special that just started at Deborah & Co. I did almost all of my Christmas shopping online this year, because it’s just so much work going out shopping with six children! We have a fun sale going on, shop now and receive a gift certificate for later! We are still shipping out for Christmas Delivery!**

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Raising Children Who Truly Follow God (It’s Not All About You)

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I had a wake up call a few weeks ago as a parent.

I can’t create a relationship with God for my child.

It sounds so basic, right? Actually, at times I tend to think we ignore this one simple concept.

As a parent who feels like they have a serious responsibility to raise up children that love God with all of their heart,¬†I tend to feel like it’s all on me.

I have to say all the right things, do all the right things, create the perfect environment for my child to do the right things. Do you ever feel that pressure as a mom?

Raising Children Who Truly Follow God (It's Not All About You)

A few weeks ago we had a guest minister come and preach at our church. My 11 year old son came home and quietly followed me into my bedroom. He sat down on my bed and said he wanted to talk. Some things that were said in the sermon really stood out to him, and he felt like parts of the sermon were life changing to him.

You know what?

They were.

I spent 11 years, pouring myself into this child, trying to train him up in the way he should go, and it took 45 minutes of hearing someone expound the word of God to really change him. 

The following week Israel was practically perfect. He worked so hard on getting along with his siblings, he was respectful to Sean and me, and he was reading his scriptures without being told. He received so many good checks on his obedience chart from Character Badges!

It helped me to understand -you can’t force these things to happen. You can encourage them, pray for them, spend hours talking to them about the right and wrong way, but ultimately God has to reach down and touch their hearts.

I find it interesting that all of my children heard the same sermon, but only one was really touched by it. The rest left and it was just, well, it was just another sermon. You never know what will touch your child, but we have to keep providing opportunities for these life changing experiences to take place, don’t we?

I’m not writing this to encourage moms to sit back and do nothing now. You can’t count on these experiences to happen despite yourself;¬†but be open to letting your children be instructed and changed by¬†people other than yourself, and by situations your not responsible for.

This being said, I’m still grateful for the resources I have used thus far. This isn’t an all or nothing post. It’s mainly a post to encourage you mothers to keep praying for your children, recognizing that sometimes God is bigger than you think, and He will touch your child in a way outside of your plan.

With six children we have spent hours talking about getting along together. It is so exhausting to have children that fight and quarrel all day long. Some of my favorite studies we have done (and will do over again!) are My Brother’s Keeper, and Because I Said So. These teach obedience to parents, and a love for your siblings.

Learning to love your siblings God's way

These studies are great to do together before a school day starts, or in the evening as a family!

A Biblical study of obedience

While these studies are great, it can be easy to do one study and not have your child truly retain what they learn. This is where Character Badges comes in. It’s designed to help you daily build good habits in your children. I find this supports any studies out there you do, because it’s helping train your children in good habits such as respectfulness, diligence, helpfulness, obedience, kindness, etc.

https://characterbadges.com/shop/character-badges-complete-set

Take heart dear mother. You have a huge responsibility to raise your children in the Lord, but God is so merciful to send those who can come alongside us, and reinforce these things to our children, and even present them in a different way. Embrace this. Take courage that you are not alone. Teach your children to respect their pastor, teacher, or mentor over them. A change in your child’s heart might be right around the corner!

 

 

 

 

Stop Running On Empty: An Amazing Resource To Help Busy Women!

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Physical and mental exhaustion is something I am far too familiar with. Trying to juggle being a wife, a mom of six children, homeschooling, homemaking, running a business, support my husband as he currently is the pastor at our church, and be a sister and friend as well, can be a bit overwhelming!

Now, I wouldn’t change a thing about it. I am so blessed and thankful for my amazing family…but that doesn’t change the fact that I’ve had to learn a thing or two these last few years about¬†taking care of myself.¬†

You see, I stink at it. I don’t often get enough sleep, I struggle to drink enough water, I struggle to get in my¬†exercise routine (even though I know I desperately need it), and tend to just push myself to do more and be more.

Does this sound familiar? 

I have a sneaking suspicion that I’m not alone in this. In fact, I’m pretty sure that most women stink at really taking care of themselves and investing in themselves.

But the thing is – it’s vitally important to stop every once in a while, even for 5-15 minutes, to refresh ourselves, fill ourselves up, and maybe even spend a few minutes reading a book or sitting outside in the sun.¬†As women, we have to stop and refuel. To pour back into ourselves so that we have the energy and the JOY to pour back into serving our families and the Lord.¬†

And that’s why I’m so excited to share with you about this brand new¬†7 part audio series all about investing in yourself…all for God’s Glory! (Find out how to get it for FREE below)

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Taking the time to invest in myself, to care for my body, and invest in my spiritual life are all vital parts of being a homemaker. I need to take a little bit of time each time to invest in myself so that I have the energy and joy to pour back into my family…otherwise I might just face some severe burn out and face my days with a begrudging attitude instead of joy in the Lord!

Do you crave a little more energy, joy, and enthusiasm when facing your day? Do you wish that when you hear the kids stirring after their nap time, that you had the energy and focus to greet that sound with joy and energy to tackle the rest of your day instead of the dreaded 3 o’clock exhaustion?

This all starts with taking just a little bit of time to invest in yourself. I have learned this the hard way after years of running around like a mad woman trying to get everything done…and then hitting a wall of fatigue and despair.¬†I want to greet my day with joy and energy!¬†

Throughout this 7 part audio series, Jami Balmet (a dear blogging friend!) will be diving into all the aspects of taking care of ourselves (and why this truly matters if we want to have a thriving home and relationship with the Lord). In the series she will talk about:

  • Avoiding burn out and letting go of GUILT when we do invest a little in ourselves
  • Making time for what you love (in 15 minutes a day)
  • Taking care of yourself – exercise and eating well
  • Investing in your Spiritual Life
  • Giving yourself GRACE…especially when life falls apart
  • Wrapping it all together for God’s Glory!

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When it officially launches next week, you can purchase it for $25 and get access right away to go through it. BUT when you purchase a premium ticket to this year’s Homemaking Ministries Online Conference through October 20th, you will get FREE access to the audio series!¬†

The conference officially kicks off next week (October 25th-28th) and when you register by Thursday for a premium ticket not only will you get free access to this audio series but you will also get a full ticket to the conference (you can listen to the sessions anytime…you get to keep them forever!) and a brand new goal setting course (which you get immediate access to).

Find out more & sign up today! >>

This year’s conference is shaping up to be incredible!! We’ve got 17 amazing speakers lined up to deliver 20 conference sessions throughout the four days. The theme for this year is¬†Finding Balance in Your Home and each session addresses various aspects of how to find and achieve balance in your home…all for God’s Glory!

Here’s the incredible line up we’ve got:

Session #1: Achieving Balance in Our Lives (A Definition) РJami Balmet
Session #2: Cultivating the Lovely in the Everyday РMacKenzie Monroe from Bold Turqious
Session #3: How to Create a Lasting & Loving Marriage РJolene Engle from Joleneengle.com
Session #4: Balance in Spending Time Online РMandy Hoffman from mandyhoffman.com
Session #5: Balance in Housekeeping – Hilary Bernstein from No Place Like Home
Session #6: Finding Balance in Spiritual Disciplines (What’s Really Important) – Jami Balmet
Session #7:¬†Balance in Meal Planning (So You Won’t Go Crazy) – Stacy Myers from Humorous Homemaking
Session #8: Finding Balance in Healthy Living (Or, how to be crunchy without being a nut) РTrisha Gilkerson from Intoxicated on Life
Session #9: Balancing Priorities for Greater Joy in Your Home РJennifer Ross from The Focused Homemaker
Session #10: Balancing Homemaking and Homeschooling РTauna Meyer from The Proverbial Homemaker
Session #11: Focusing on the Gospel Throughout the Week – Jami Balmet
Session #12: Balance in Motherhood РChristy Fitzwater from christyfitzwater.com
Session #13: Creating Balance for the Working Homemaker РCaroline Allen from The Modest Mom (Me!)
Session #14: Finding Balance in Relationships – Angie Tolpin from Courageous Mom
Session #15: Living a Life of Ministry (Even When You Can’t Leave the House) РKatie Bennett from Embracing a Simpler Life
Session #16: Making Scripture Memory a priority in your day – Carlie Kervechal from Today’s Frugal Mom and Fulfilling Your Vows
Session #17: Balance in Planning РMarlene Griffith from A Diligent Heart
Session #18: Balance in Healthy Eating РKelly Smith from The Nourishing Home
Session #19: A Startup Guide to Simplifying Your Stuff – Elsie Callendar from Richly Rooted
Session #20: Finding Purpose and Cultivating Joy in Your Home РJami Balmet

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Bonus #2: Goal Setting Course and Workbook

Do you still need another reason to sign up for the conference? When you purchase a premium ticket you also get access to our brand new Goal Setting Course and Workbook all about setting priorities for you day, effectively planning, creating a family mission statement, and more!

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Character Badges Back to School Sale Is Here!

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Character Badges Back to School Sale!

It’s the Character Badges Back to School Sale!!

For most of you, the new school year is just around the corner and many of you have already begun! (yay homeschooling!)¬†We’re just as excited as you are,¬†and to celebrate we’re having the biggest sale we’ve ever had!

Academics are the primary focus¬†of any school year, but character training is just as crucial to the future success of your child. We designed Character Badges to help children build habits of sound character and to help parents be more consistent and creative in how they train their children. It’s a fun and effective addition to any school year!

Character Badges is a creative child training program

That said, there’s never been a better time to incorporate Character Badges into your classroom. Our back to school sale only comes once a year, and this year¬†the entire store is 30% off!!¬†Charts, stickers, coins, even complete sets –¬†its all 30% off. Just use the offer code¬†BKTOSCHOOL¬†at time of checkout and enjoy some great savings!

This sale runs from today (7-20) through Saturday (7-23) at midnight, so hurry to take advantage of the biggest discount we’ve ever offered!¬†Character Badge complete set

 

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