Category Archive Taking Care of Mom

ByJennifer A. Janes

Gratitude for Moms

In the early days of my marriage, I couldn’t write unless it was quiet. Even noises drifting in from outside bothered me. Fortunately, our neighborhood is pretty quiet, so I managed to get some pages written. Less than two years later, our first daughter was born, and less than two years after that, our second daughter joined our family.

 

Gratitude for Moms - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven

 

Our house has not been quiet for a long time, but I’m writing more than ever. Things have changed. Now, my husband sometimes takes the girls out to do something fun while I write. He sends me a text message asking how it’s going. Often, my reply is “I’m barely getting started. The house is too quiet.”

 

Who would have guessed?

 

The very thing that distracted me from writing back then is what I thrive on now—noise, activity, life. I dread the “empty nest” because I know I will have to make the transition yet again, from writing in a home bustling with laughter, chatter, and fun to finding my way in the silence. Isn’t it funny how things change?

 

I dread the effect that the kids’ growing up and moving out will have on my writing, but there are other things that will be affected too:

 

  • I won’t have as much laundry or dishes to wash.
  • I won’t have to buy and prepare as much food.
  • My home will stay cleaner, longer.
  • Small pairs of shoes won’t litter the walkways.
  • There won’t be wet, dripping wash cloths left in the shower.
  • Dirty clothes won’t cover the bathroom floor.
  • I won’t have as many messes to clean up.

 

But when those are gone, my home will also be missing:

 

  • Giggles and laughter.
  • Small arms wrapping around my neck.
  • Sloppy kisses.
  • Intricate drawings and play dough sculptures.
  • Childish voices singing praise music as loudly as possible.
  • Girls choreographing dances in my living room.
  • A girl curled up, reading a book with her cat sleeping next to her.

 

The more I think about it, the more I realize that to eliminate the things that irritate me, I have to get rid of even more that brings me great joy.


I think I’ll learn a lesson from my writing time and quit being so hasty to wish away the days I have left with my children. They’ll be gone all too soon.

ByAngie

Scriptures To Encourage Healthy Living (With Free Printable)

I’ve been trying really hard the last few months to get in shape. With the help of Plexus, I have lost 54 lbs since the last week of April.  I also have less pain (MUCH less) from my joints/fibromyalgia issues. Since losing all that weight, I am feeling more inspired to embark on other paths to becoming healthier. I’m trying to get in an exercise routine, drink more water, and take better care of myself in other ways as well.

Now, in no way do I claim to be doing everything I can (though I would like to), but I am trying. I decided to put some scriptures to encourage healthy living up around the house in strategic places to remind me of the changes I am making. Since I was typing these up for myself, I thought maybe someone else would like to have a copy too.

<a href=Galatians 5:22-23 - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven" width="550" height="439" srcset="https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Galatians-5-22-23-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven.png 550w, https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Galatians-5-22-23-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven-300x239.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

The reason I chose Galatians 5:22-23 is pretty self-explanatory, especially since I have self-control in a larger font than any of the other words. I am placing this passage on my refrigerator and inside the cabinet for our pantry. With this scripture in my face every time I feel like snacking, I can stop and think about what and why I am reaching for something to eat. Am I really hungry, or am I bored, thirsty, emotional, etc? Should I really be getting chips? Because occasionally that is okay, but maybe I should be cutting up some veggies instead. If I am reminded to use self-control with my eating, a lot of good can be done instead of “just this once” turning into “just this time every day at the exact minute”.

<a href=Ecclesiastes 10:18 - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven" width="550" height="452" srcset="https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Ecclesiastes-10-18-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven.png 550w, https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Ecclesiastes-10-18-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven-300x246.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

Ecclesiastes 10:18 is going above my tv, and maybe inside my Kindle case. There are many times that I could be doing something active, but would rather do something else that does not use a single muscle. Now, as I stated above, I do have joint issues and fibromyalgia. However, that does not give me a free pass to never work out at all. There is also a kind of funny/embarrassing aspect to why I chose this scripture: I need to be reminded to do kegels. I don’t want my house leaking… I don’t think anyone else wants my house leaking either. In fact, it’s pretty frowned upon. 😉 No reason a few can’t be done every time I sit down in the living room, right?

<a href=Proverbs 31:30 - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven" width="550" height="450" srcset="https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Proverbs-31-30-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven.png 550w, https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Proverbs-31-30-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven-300x245.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

I am always beating myself up for my appearance. Saying that I lack self-esteem is an understatement. But I know deep down in my heart that I am beautiful in God’s sight. Proverbs 31:30 is going to be taped to the mirror on my vanity, so that when I am preparing to leave the house I will read those words and not walk out the door in a foul mood. It will also make me sing “That Kinda Girl” by DC Talk. Who doesn’t love a little memory from the Free At Last album in their day? If that doesn’t put me in a good mood, well, something must be really wrong that day.

<a href=John 7:38 - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven" width="550" height="471" srcset="https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/John-7-38-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven.png 550w, https://raisingstickyhands.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/John-7-38-Raising-Sticky-Hands-To-Heaven-300x256.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

Can you guess where I will be taping John 7:38? If you guessed inside the fridge, you guessed right. This is for a couple of reasons: to drink more water and to remember who the life-giver is… and if I want to be healthy in this life I need to take care of His temple. I have always hated water. The taste, the way my stomach feels after drinking it, just everything. I don’t know why. But if I add a few flavor drops or infuse it with water, I handle it fine. Whatever it takes, I need to have more of it for many reasons.

 

Soon I may add more scriptures to encourage healthy living to my decor, but for now these are the 4 I am going to focus on. I still have a lot of weight to lose, but I know that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Like how I through Philippians 4:13 in there? Did you see my post about that on our Facebook page yesterday? Maybe next I will put up some scriptures to encourage housework…)

 

To learn more about Plexus, click the blog button below or go directly to Alicia’s Plexus site by clicking here. I truly tried every route my doctor suggested for a few years without any success. This has been the only thing that has worked for me so far. An answer to prayer!

Click here or the image below to download your Scriptures To Encourage Healthy Living free printable.

Scriptures To Encourage Healthy Living - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven

 

And just for fun…

Do you have any scriptures that encourage you to live a healthy lifestyle? I’d love to know what they are! Please share in the comments.

ByJennifer A. Janes

Success Is Possible, Even After You’ve Blown It

As moms, we’re pretty hard on ourselves. If dinner burns, we forgot to get five things at the grocery store (although, in all fairness, they weren’t on the list), the kids misbehaved in Sunday school, or the neighbor complains that our dog is too noisy, we’re quick to blame ourselves. But what about when a marriage struggles, relationships with our children are strained, or we lose a job? Right. We blame ourselves there too.

 

Success is possible, Even after you've blown it - Jennifer A. Janes - Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven - RaisingStickyHands.com

 

We’re human. Of course we bear part of the blame! But most of these scenarios involve situations and people that we can’t control on our own. So we aren’t wholly to blame, even though it feels like it.

 

How do you recover from failures like these? How do you survive the stress and strain? How do you find success again? There are solutions, and they’re not as complicated as you might expect, whether the issues are big or small:

 

 

  • Seek forgiveness. From God, the people you’ve hurt or offended, and yourself. Without forgiveness, you may find a root of bitterness, anger, or resentment taking root, and that will make your problems worse, not better.
  • Ask God what you can do to change the situation. Obviously, a recipe that needs tweaking will be much easier to fix than a relationship that needs repair. God has the answers for every situation, and He can show you exactly what to do to facilitate the healing and restoration that need to take place.
  • Pray for the other people involved. Pray that while God is doing a work in you, that the other people involved in the situation will allow Him to work in their lives too.
  • Remember that your today doesn’t define your tomorrow. While we sometimes have to live with the consequences of today’s choices for a long time, it doesn’t mean that we’re trapped into continuing along the same path indefinitely. You can choose to make a different choice today than you made yesterday, and God is right there to help you do it.
  • Take deep breaths. If you’re living in the aftermath of abuse or divorce, it can be easy to respond as if the family members in your life today are the same ones who caused you so much pain and heartache in the past. Don’t let your past ruin your relationships with people who behave like they’re supposed to but are human and make mistakes. I have had to do this when confronted with possible trust issues with my husband. He is not the man who hurt me so many years ago.

Obviously, these are pretty vague, and they don’t apply equally to all situations, but the basic principles are there. God can help you through any failure you find yourself in. He will see you through all the pain and heartache to the other side, if you will surrender yourself to Him to bring the healing and restoration you need.

ByAngie

Have a question? Need advice? Introducing The Sticky Hands Mommy Panel!

I know, you’re sitting there thinking “Whaaa? ‘Sticky Hands Mommy Panel’ so women can get anonymous Christian advice? Weirdos… Why would I ask them anything?”

However, I think we’ve all been there at some point. We either needed help with an embarrassing subject, had no one in our lives that was able to relate to our thought or was momentarily unavailable, would like a second opinion, or maybe we just want prayer or are  in need of someone to bounce an idea off of.

 

Ask for anonymous Christian advice from the Mommy Panel at Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven - RaisingStickyHands.com

 

Motherhood is an adventure from the moment you begin thinking about it. An overwhelming adventure at that. There’s information overload everywhere you turn! Yet sometimes, the answers aren’t so obvious or clear, especially when it comes to being a Christian with some of those questions. How the world might feel about one topic may not rest well with you and you just need to ask someone.

Well, here we are friends. We’ve actually been here all along, but it only recently dawned on me that we haven’t been so clear that we are readily available.  No request is too small or silly. Have a question about pregnancy, devotionals, homeschooling, scripture, a past post, or anything else? Send it on in! We won’t bite. Promise.

I will state that we are NOT experts.  However, we have lived through experience. If we don’t know the answer, we will try our best to find someone who can.

Later this week we will begin our series on motherhood, from preconception to, well… we haven’t gotten that far… Be sure to come back and read along! We look forward to hearing from you!

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ByAngie

Review: Putting On The Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions For Busy Moms

This post contains affiliate links.

Unless this is your first time here, you know I’m a busy mom. You see it in my Facebook statuses, Tweets, & frequently here on the blog as, well, the whole theme of Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven is about making time for God in the midst of being a busy mom.

Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy MomsSo it comes as no surprise that I’m excited to share my review of this book with you all today. Putting On the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms, just released this week, is one of my most favorite devotional books yet.

Katie Hornor

Author Katie Hornor of Paradise Praises put together this study for moms like you and me. The mothers who have little time to catch a breath, let alone find time to spend in the Word. For the moms whose time is valuable and cannot be wasted by reading something that isn’t just right. The ones who sometimes have to read quickly while in the doctor’s waiting room, a few minutes before the family wakes, or maybe even in the bathroom with the door locked. She knew what we needed, because she is a busy mom herself. Most of all, she let the Lord speak through her and that is what makes this book so amazing.

Putting On the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms

Each day’s reading takes about 10 minutes, just as the title says. Along with the workbook that is available for free to download, you will realize what the Bible says about the Fruits of The Spirit mentioned in Galatians while doing some soul searching. While going through Putting On the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms I had so many “Aha!” moments that I did not anticipate. Without being preachy, Katie teaches us how to put on the whole spirit in our day to day lives by being down to earth and speaking the truth. I couldn’t wait to read each day and even found myself crying tears of joy some of those days. Quick, meaty, encouraging, and a blessing. Exactly what I needed!

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This week only Putting On the Spirit: Ten-minute Devotions for Busy Moms is available for 99 cents! The book’s forward is by Heidi St. John and is also available in Spanish. I can’t recommend it enough! I even plan to go through it again each time my children study the fruits of the spirit in homeschool. It’s that good!

 

POTS Disclaimer

ByAngie

Review: Chaos…Simplified The Womans {life} Planner

As promised a few days ago, I am bringing you some tips and ways that I have managed to “survive” the last year of extreme chaos in our lives. Unfortunately, our website has been acting a little finicky so that I haven’t been able to post ANYTHING the last few days. FINALLY today I’m able to get on here. What a relief! So without further ado, I am sharing the biggest help to my life recently.

Chao...Simplified

For the last few months, I have had the pleasure of looking over and using The Womans {life} Planner by Chaos… Simplified. The name of this product is truly a perfect fit for how it has affected my life! I could literally talk about what a wonderful tool this product is non-stop. Just ask my family that I’m spending the weekend with in Palm Springs right now on a Mother/Daughter retreat… They might have said, “Okay, we get it. Just order us some already…”

In my life I have used SO many planners and organizers. I’ve tried making my own to fit my life. I’ve spent big bucks on electronic gadgets and books. I’ve even tried the whole white board organization system. I am honest in admitting to anyone I have a real problem with time management, remembering tasks, and staying on top of general organization of what needs to be done when. Disarray, people. That is my life without some sort of system in place.

Chaos… Simplified, the brain child of Corri L. Bitner, has taken the chore of keeping it all together out of the equation. With The Womans {life} Planner, in one easy to carry binder that easily fits in a average sized purse, you have everything a busy Mom on the go might need. Actually, I need to clarify: Almost everything. As my Mom pointed out, it does not have a cup holder. Other than that, it’s all there.

The Womans {life} planner is technically two products in one. It begins with The Womans {week by week} Planner.

The Womans {week by week} Planner is a spiral bound week by week formatted calendar and organizer. When you first open it up, there are a few pages of scripture, encouragement, and suggestions from the author along with some snippets of articles that she feels are helpful. Reading these pages I found myself nodding my head in agreement and quickly circling and underlining every part that I particularly liked. Without giving anything away, let’s just say that I’ve changed my thoughts on being hospitable… This system has truly changed my life in ways I never imagined, and this area is one of them.

Chaos... SimplifiedIn addition, there are sections to jot down birthdays, a 5 year plan for events and goals, go to meals, cleaning agenda, (LOVE this!), holiday planning, wish list, budgeting, websites & passwords, important numbers, and addresses.

Each day of the weekly calendar is broken down into today’s top 3 priorities followed by an area to write down lists and plans for the day. THIS has been my saving grace! I can write the 3 things that MUST be done that day at the top where they are easily seen and not forgotten. There is also a little area for tracking how much water you are drinking every day, with 8 droplets of water at top under today’s priorities for you to check off as you drink throughout the day. Each week also has a section for things to do, phone calls to make, and notes. Again, all things that I needed to keep track of. Having it all in one place and at a glance has truly made my life much easier.

The Womans {life} Planner is the binder that holds it all. Containing 5 note pads, The Womans {week by week} Planner, and an area to attach a pen, everything is kept together so neatly that you can open it anywhere and quickly close it to take it with you on the go. The note pads are:

  • The art of juggling – This is probably my favorite of the note pads. It has grids for personal, household, financial, family, and work to do lists. I LOVE having it all right there to see all together.
  • Today’s most important tasks – A self-explained note pad to write down your list and tear it away.
  • My dreams & doodles – I use this note pad to write down all the things that I want to sew, make, and do.
  • What’s cookin’ baby? – A month at a glance menu plan. LOVE
  • Gotta pick it up – A shopping list that is large enough to contain a good sized amount of groceries.

I can’t say enough great things about this product. I went from being scattered and unable to keep everything contained to being able to control the chaos in my life more than I have in a long time. I never leave the house without it, always finding myself pulling it out to write down notes, reminders, and memories.

One other fun little thing about this system: The quotes and scriptures throughout The Womans {week by week} Planner. There have been a few times I was feeling down or stressed and the little reading on the page I was on gave me encouragement and a little pick me up.

I highly recommend this planner and organizer to anyone who has a tough time keeping it all together, especially new moms. Oh how I wish I had this when my babies were new to track feedings and diaper changes. It would have made life a whole lot easier, let me tell you!

Click here to visit Chaos…Simplified and order a planner of your own! The Womans {week by week} planner is regularly $19.95 and The Womans {life} planner is regularly $59.95. Both are on sale right now though! And for readers of Raising Sticky Hands To Heaven, Chaos…Simplified is offering FREE SHIPPING using the promo code: “freeship”!

Thank you, Chaos…Simplified! Thank you thank you thank you THANK YOU! Not only for allowing me to do this review, but also for literally simplifying the chaos in my life. I cannot stress how much this planner has positively changed my life.

ChaosSimplified

ByJudye

Mother To Mother

Animals are amazing. I was at the St. Louis Zoo one spring day & decided to visit the orangutans. I had broken off from the rest of the crowd and am so glad I did. If there had been a lot of people around this probably would never have occurred.

Behind a huge window were the primates – most were napping or sitting & eating what had been given to them that day. Over in the corner just out of public view, I noticed a slight movement & turned just in time to see a very large female nursing her newborn. We made eye contact instantly & I smiled & pointed to her baby.

She gently got up, walked over to the window & sat down directly in front of me. I was so stunned I dared not move. She kissed her baby & held it up to the window for me to see. I touched the window & nodded in her direction, held my hand on the window & smiled. She then grinned, held the baby to her & kissed it again.

I think about it from time to time & the wonder of communicating with such a magnificent creature who took time to show off her baby to another Mom who happened to be strolling through her world one afternoon.

ByAngie

Why I’ve Decided To Register for “Hello Mornings”

Remember back a few months ago? I posted about how I was going to start waking up early before the family to get our routine to run a little smoother?

HelloMornings
It was great. I was doing it. Some days REALLY early, and some days just a half hour before the first child joyfully greeted me for the day.

Then Summer hit. Hard.

With Summer comes change for almost all families, but for ours, everything is completely different. My two older children are here from out of state, we only do unschooling, and we are very relaxed. Nothing bad, it’s just quite a bit different than what we are used to during the school year. (Like that’s a routine that isn’t challenged and in need of reinventing? HA! 😉 )

Added into the equation this Summer was a series of events:

  1. We had a housewarming party, at which time my husband and I renewed our vows. It was wonderful, fun, and we were surrounded by those we love. But it took a lot of planning and threw things off for a few days before.
  2. Two days after our housewarming/vow renewal, I had a hysterectomy. I spent one night in the hospital, my body wouldn’t react to pain meds well, and it took a lot more out of me than I anticipated.
  3. I did too much too fast after my surgery, trying to soak in and enjoy every single second with my kids while they were all under one roof. This involved my Mom and I taking the oldest 3 to Disney’s California Adventure 10 days after my surgery. Not my smartest move, but I survived and it was worth it.
  4. My Mom had major surgery. A portion of her colon/intestine had to be removed as she had colon cancer. Praise the Lord, she is fine today. No chemo/radiation is needed. But it threw off the routine even more, if that was possible. I’m just so glad she is healthy and ALIVE!
  5. Of all the times of year that you assume your family would come down with the flu, it’s probably not at the peak of Summer. Well, murphy’s law, folks. Our family got the flu. It’s been two weeks and it’s still hanging on by a thread.
  6. I haven’t been able to pick up the kids, clean the house, cook, bake, etc for the last 5 weeks. I’m starting to ease back into it, but when you haven’t done something in awhile, jumping in head first is probably a recipe for a nervous breakdown.
  7. The older two children returned home. Instead of our family jumping back to our “school year norm”, we kind of go through a funk for a few weeks. The 3 that live with us are confused and miss their older siblings. Mommy and Daddy are sad and wish they had more time with all of their kids. And the older kids call back saying the miss us, but are having a good time. Just a good ol’ fashioned mourning period. We do it after ever visit with them. We get over it, and we get by. I mean, we don’t lock our family in the house, close all the curtains, and cut off from the world. We’re not in a severe dramatic depression. We’re just sad that our babies are gone. That’s all.

In the midst of all of this going on, the brief moments that I have had a chance to check twitter I’ve seen my friend Larri from Seams Inspired tweeting about Hello Mornings, and how great it was. Some days it intrigued me. One day, I’ll be honest and tell you that I thought “Cheery Perky Morning People!!!” Other days I found myself craving it. Time with the Lord, to plan, and make my day right before it even begins? Definitely what I need.

My Grandma did this as I was growing up. The exact routine. Me, being young, I couldn’t understand why she would give up the luxury of precious sleep to sit in a quiet house before anyone was awake just to read her Bible and make lists. And not even while still sitting in bed. She’d sit at the kitchen table. That’s not cozy! I was baffled. I mean, seriously, couldn’t she do that in the afternoon while I was playing outside or practicing piano?

Clearly, I get it now. And it’s needed in my life. Desperately. Things are so far off kilter I don’t even know where exactly to begin. But I have an opportunity to start from scratch. So here, this time, I’m going to start back the right way. With God first before anything else, alone with Him every morning. Before anyone wakes up, before the day begins. The only thing I’ll do before I sit down with my Bible is… make a delicious cup of coffee.

Have you ever had to change up your morning routine? Or had a season that was a bit more chaotic than you thought it would be? How did it work out for you? Are you registered for Hello Mornings? Let me know if you’ve been there, going through it, or starting out just like me…

 

ByJudye

The End Of The Rainbow

My son & I discovered the end of the rainbow one day.

He must have been about 12 yrs. old. We were driving toward Murray, KY after a spring rain & I noticed the end of the rainbow had to be fairly close. We turned down a little country side road & followed as near as we could to where we thought we would reach it.

After rounding several curves, we got to the top of a hill & there it was – just a few feet away. We got close enough to see the water droplets sparkling & reflecting all the misty colors. Just a simple, quiet moment in time.

God’s gifts are that way – not always trumpeted or heralding pompous grandeur – but echoed in a Mom & son’s memory – a wonder of God’s creation shared one day when they decided to venture off the beaten path & take the road less traveled.

I love Him.

ByAngie

Sticky Hands: Out Of The Mouths Of Babes

I was recently discussing this topic with a friend who stated that, long story short, her little girl lead her to having a relationship with Jesus.

I cannot emphasize enough just how cool I believe this really is!!!

Little did I know that my little guy was going to be used, once again, to minister to me. You may remember that on Monday I posted about taking a leap of faith and how God spoke to me by watching Tommy jump off the couch.

Well, fast forward to this morning. I’m stressed. I’m scared. I’m worried. My Dad is going in for another surgery tomorrow. I’ve been praying all morning for peace. I went in to do some dishes when I heard my son sing “Hahahahahahaha” as in the verse from “The Joy Of The Lord Is My Strength”. I couldn’t help but grin a little.

“Why didn’t I think of that? Duh Angie!”

Needless to say, I’ve been singing it for the last couple of hours.

What about you? How have your children ministered to you lately?