Monday, January 30, 2017

Baby Butler is #3 is 38 Weeks

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My app popped up with this little gem today. So crazy to think he could come any time now, but we are believing for full-term. I still feel really good & am not “"miserable” at all. Thankfully I don’t really feel like I’m 38 weeks pregnant & I’ve got a couple more weeks in me.

Growth: Whattoexpect.com says “Your little one isn't quite so little anymore, weighing about seven pounds and measuring 20 inches in length, give or take an inch or two. Only two more weeks (four max) before your baby makes her appearance.

At 38 weeks pregnant, all systems are almost go! As you prepare for baby's ETA, he's getting ready too, big-time, and continues to shed vernix and lanugo. Your baby is also swallowing amniotic fluid, some of which winds up in his intestines, where it — along with other shed cells, bile and waste products — will turn into your baby's first bowel movement (meconium) and perhaps your first diaper change. His lungs are still maturing and producing more and more surfactant, a substance that prevents the air sacs in the lungs from sticking to each other once he starts to breathe. Most other changes this week are small but important: He's continuing to add fat and fine-tune his brain and nervous system (so he can deal with all the stimulation that awaits him once he makes his entrance into the world)!”

Weight/Baby Bump: +28 lbs. Baby bump is growing!

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Sleep: Big bros have been totally tag teaming me this week. Either one or the other (mostly Kade because he’s cutting 2 two-year molars and one other tooth) have been waking up in the middle of the night for about an hour. A couple times I’ve had a difficult time going back to sleep, and because I’ve had so much to do I haven’t really been taking naps. I’m praying for a restful night’s sleep for all of us tonight. I keep on saying it, but I think God has just been getting me ready for a newborn. I’ve been spoiled to sleeping really well and all night long for a WHILE now because both of the boys are (typically) really great sleepers.

I’ve also had ridiculously vivid dreams, and they haven’t been good ones. I had a dream two nights ago and I was bawling because someone was being so mean to me in it. When I woke up, I was actually crying REAL tears? What?!?! Hahah! I was embarrassed to talk because I didn’t want Jonathan to hear that I’d been crying in my voice. Crazy hormones!

Movement: They told me to be sure to pay attention to movement from here on out and be aware of kick counts. Right after the doctor told me that and I laid on my back to get checked, Beau went wild & was poking body parts every which way out of my belly. Almost like he was saying “I hear ya, Doc. I’m movin!” Funny lil guy already.

He’s definitely running out of room though, and it may sound crazy, but sometimes I can’t tell the difference between Braxton Hicks & him moving.

Symptoms: Sometimes I have seriously intense Braxton Hicks when I walk. No swelling anywhere. I am hungry but not eating very much at a time because my belly gets so full so quickly. Have had a touch of a sore throat, but nothing major. (I know it’s from not getting enough sleep.) I’m pretty certain I’ve had SPD (symphisis pubis dysfunction) for a while now too, but going to the chiropractor and yoga weekly has helped tremendously. Pregnancy brain is REAL & in full swing.

Appointments: Had an appointment on Wednesday, Jan 25. Blood pressure was 120/78. I was up 26 lbs at this appt. They told me I was GBS negative (praise the Lord, answered prayer so I can labor at home as long as possible and won’t need antibiotics) & I’m measuring right on track. Heartbeat was good & strong. They also checked me this time. He said my cervix was soft but still closed, and that Beau’s head was low and in a good position. I was actually pretty surprised there wasn’t some progress, but I also have a feeling this delivery is going to go quick, so he can keep on cookin’ with no “progress” for now.

Accomplishments: Have a few freezer meals ready to go. Washed a few outfits for Beau & the boys’ big brother shirts. I have glass bottles ready to go (even though it’ll be a few weeks probably before we give him one). Have my pump ready…just need to charge it. I’ve been cooking at home a LOT! Mom got me a few goodies and helped me organize some things, so as soon as Jon gets the rest out of storage, we should be pretty much ready to go.

Work Outs: Went to yoga 3 times last week. LOVED it! I haven’t done any weights because we haven’t been able to get to the gym (& their classes are kinda whack anyway), and I can definitely tell I’m not as firm as I was during my pregnancy with Kade when I lifted pretty much up until the day he was born. I can really tell the yoga is working well though.

Best Pregnancy Moment This Week: Jase said “Whoa mom, your belly is really getting big.” He’s starting to understand we have a baby coming soon and acts excited. I also taught Kade to say “baby.” So sweet! I love being their mama and can’t wait to add our third little mister to the mix. I pray they all have a super strong bond, have each other’s backs, and are best friends.

Goals: 1. Pack for the hospital. 2. Have Jon grab the things we’ll need out of storage. (bouncie chair, swaddles, newborn clothes, baby wraps, wash cloths/towels, baby bath, heating pad, infant sleeper that clicks in the top of the pack n play, changing pad) 3. Get extra pack n play from Mom. 4. Wash some clothes (boys shirts, coming home outfit, a few onsies, new sheets). 5. Get gifts for Jase & Kade from Baby Beau. 6. Order diapers. 7. Get my hair done & a pedicure.

Thoughts: Can’t wait to meet our next little love bug! I have so enjoyed this pregnancy and have felt great. I am so thankful for that. I have really been focusing on my walk with the Lord and have been so excited about what He is doing in my heart. I pray that others see the JOY of the Lord through me and cannot wait to see what God has in store for our family. I definitely feel the waters stirring & I’m just EXCITED about it! Praying we are faithful & obedient to whatever calling He has coming for us.

Comparison:

Jase:

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Kade:

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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Gifts for the Nurses/Doctors/Midwives

Labor & delivery is such an incredible time! We begin praying for the doctor/midwives & nurses who will be on call when we deliver very early on in pregnancy. They play such a crucial role and we are so thankful for all they do during one of the most important times in our life. What an incredible calling they have! We pray that it will be the RIGHT people, that God will give them wisdom, clarity, focus, and a sound mind. We pray for blessings, protection, & anointing over them. We also pray they will be believers, and that we (me especially) will allow Christ to shine through us to them so they give GLORY to Him (because yes, you can even be kind & Christlike during childbirth, and that’s an awesome testament to HIS strength & power).

As a little thank you and token of our appreciation, we make little goody bags so they know how appreciated they are by the Butler family. We want them to KNOW they have been prayed for and that we believe they’ve been specifically chosen. Plus, I like to give gifts & I always want to be known as a grateful person. It’s important for people to know you appreciate them.

We mostly put AdvoCare goodies in the bags because we want to share what we love (and duh, we LOVE Advo!), but have put a few other things in as well. (So we have put in few different Spark flavors, Rehydrate, Advobars, a meal shake, a Slam, Oasis, gum, hand sanitizer, note pad, pen, etc.) I don’t think it really matters what’s in there- it’s more of the thought that counts. I’ve heard of people baking treats or bringing candy too.

We also add a card I have printed from Shutterfly with a picture of our family.

We have made around 15-20 bags in the past and given one to every person who has a hand in helping us, but  we always had leftovers. (I ended up giving them to people who bought us meals after the baby was born.) This time I only made 10 because we’ll stay in the same room for labor/delivery and post-partum, so I don’t see us having as many different nurses. (Plus, Jon wanted to go home as SOON as possible after Kade, so we left the hospital 26 hours after having him and didn’t have nearly as many nurses as we did when I had Jase & was in the hospital from 2-3 days. I’m believing the same thing will happen this time.)

Here are the goody bags & cards I’ve made when we had each of the boys.

And P.S. The prayers have worked! We’ve always had the best nurses, midwives, & doctors!!

BEAU:

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KADE:

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JASE:

Feel free to steal away! I think it’s so important to let people know you appreciate them & are thankful for their hard work. Even a little note is a nice gesture & doesn’t take much effort.

Power Cakes Muffins (Banana Chocolate Chip)

I typically make a big brunch every Sunday after church, & it’s our special day where I usually make pancakes or waffles with our eggs. The boys always get excited! I mix it up and try all different types of pancakes, like the 3 ingredient ones I made a few weeks ago. Sometimes I make them homemade, and sometimes I try different types of mixes I’ve found. One that we like is from Costco called Kodiak Cakes.

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I saw a recipe on the back of the box for some muffins, so I decided to make some for the boys. (Jonathan doesn’t eat bananas & doesn’t like foods like banana nut bread where you can taste the bananas, so I knew he wouldn’t eat them.)

Here is the recipe:

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SUPER easy, & Jase loved helping me make them. I think he liked eating them even more though.

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And of course we added a little bit of all of our favorite superfoods I just blogged about. I told ya, I sneak that stuff in wherever I can! I added around a tablespoon of each…maybe more of the ground flax & superfood blend.

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Oh, and we added a few of the Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips too. Not as much as the recipe called for, but enough to add a little something.

Enjoy Life Semi Sweet Chocolate Mini Chips - 10 oz - 2 pk

Big hit with the Butler boys, & healthier than most any traditional muffin mix. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Teaching our Kids Bible Verses

“I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” Psalm 119:11

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6

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Memorizing Scripture is very important to me & has been a big part of my walk. When I face a struggle myself or am talking to someone else who is sharing something going on in their life, it is so cool how God brings those verses to remembrance. His words are powerful and can bring such peace and comfort. I also believe in praying God’s Word, and it’s much easier to do that when you know the Bible.

I knew as the boys grew older I wanted to help them “hide the Word in their heart” as a part of “training them up in the way they should go.” About a year ago (maybe longer) we were having a play date at a friends and I saw a chart on her refrigerator with several verses & stickers next to it. Her son is right at a year older than Jase, but I was so impressed with the verses he knew. It challenged and inspired me to start working with Jase…I guess I just assumed he was too young or didn’t really think about it?  These little ones are capable of WAY more than we give them credit for!

Anyway, we got intentional and started practicing some verses at bedtime. I started with one & had him repeat it. Once he got it nailed down, I’d add more. We’d repeat each verse. We don’t do it every single night, but we try to recite them most nights. Even if I don’t have him say them, I include them in the prayers I am praying over him so he hears them. (We also listen to the Cubbies c.d. in the car & it says the Cubbies verses in between the stories.)

These are the verses we started with, and he knows most of these at 3 1/2. (The blue are the ones I taught him on my own. The red are the ones he learned for Cubbies. The black are the next few we’re working on.) I haven’t taught him the references yet. I figure we’ll start working on that some more when he turns 4, but for now it’s just important to me that he is starting to memorize them.

I just wanted to share this in case you’re looking for a starting place. Maybe you’re like me and had plans to teach them eventually, but haven’t really thought about starting yet. They’re never too young, friends! And they’ll surprise you with what they’re capable of learning.

  • Trust in the Lord with all your heart.
  • Love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.
  • I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
  • If God be for us, who can be against us?
  • Children, obey your parents in the Lord for this is good.
  • Every good and perfect gift is from above.
  • All have sinned.
  • While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
  • In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the earth.
  • God loved us and sent his son.
  • God saw everything He had made and it was very good.
  • In all things, give thanks.
  • God works together for the good of those who love him.
  • !Let your light shine before men.
  • Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. The Lord will be with you wherever you go.
  • I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
  • Be strong and do not give up, for your hard work will be rewarded.

We have also been saying a little poem type thing to help him learn the armor of God (with hand motions) since he was very little.

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My sister bought us a little statue that I used to use, but it is packed up in storage somewhere. I recently found a picture at Hobby Lobby & was so excited to get it for them.

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This is also worth teaching them! I love that it also requires us as parents to memorize the Word so we can teach it to them. Double win!

Anything else you do to help your children memorize Scripture?? Would love to hear your tips, tricks, & ideas!

Celebrating WOMANHOOD

God created men and women with unique, distinct natures. That becomes evident to us in Genesis when God describes Adam and Eve. Both created uniquely in His image.

If you don’t believe in God, you probably won’t feel this is even applicable to you. (Although, I would love to talk to you & pray the Lord reveals Himself to you.) But if you claim to be a Christ follower, I hope you’ll take just a minute to consider this. While the majority or the commands are written in general to Christ followers, the Bible does have some Scriptures directed specifically at men and some directed specifically at women. Women of God, we need to pay special attention to those that are just for us. We need to closely examine those verses. Study them, understand them, and live them out. Study the women of the Bible who are our examples. That’s exactly what the Word is there for….to guide us!

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Side note: I absolutely loved this article that goes into more depth on our specific natures & I think it’s worth taking the time to read:

Male and Female by Design: A Perfect Reflection of God (Masculinity and Femininity)

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Yes, women CAN do many things men can do. And yes, men CAN do many things women can do. But why would we want to operate outside of our God-given nature? There is so much PEACE & JOY in ministering within the realm of how our Creator designed us.

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This is not about equality. We are equal in God’s eyes, and that is what should matter to us.  He loves us all, & women are not in any way lesser than men. But equal does not necessarily mean the same. Just as all parts of the body are equally important (think of the analogy He gives us in the Word about the head, neck, hands, feet, etc.), they all serve different (but equally important) functions within the body of Christ. God gifts us each uniquely. To me, the same is true of men & women.

I have not personally ever had any rights denied from being a woman that I can remember, so when I saw the march, I was genuinely curious as to what these ladies were marching about. I am all about supporting causes you are passionate about and being a voice for those who can’t speak for themselves, so I asked a few different acquaintances to explain their stance in hopes of gaining some insight. I truly wanted to know if there is something I am missing (that lines up with the Word of God).

I received a couple of very poetic responses (which I do respect) like “I march because…I march for…” and they’d list off some different things. (And other women would commend them on their response.) But honestly, it didn’t bring any clarity for me. I still left scratching my head and wondering what the whole thing was about.

To me, marching for someone who doesn’t have a voice would include groups like abused children, orphans, sex trafficking victims, etc. There are no gender discriminations amongst these groups, so I don’t think that’s who they were marching on behalf of, correct? And while awareness is an important step, the ACTION we are taking to battle these issues is significantly more important. I think sometimes we need to stop and ask ourselves, “What am I actually accomplishing for the good by simply voicing my opinion?” and “Is there anything I can be DOING to truly make a difference?” Maybe it’s giving financially. Maybe it’s donating items. Maybe it’s serving in a specific ministry or organization. Maybe it’s being an intentional prayer warrior for a specific group. Maybe it’s fostering/adopting.

I am not bashing any women who participated. And I don’t think it’s necessary to “choose a side” or put down anyone. We can respectfully disagree. But it’s not even about that to me, and honestly, this post isn’t even meant to be about the “women’s march.” I honestly don’t even know a whole lot about it because I do not watch the news AT ALL. I think the media (overall) is wicked and corrupt, and to me, the best way to “demand better” is to stop supporting it completely. Maybe if they lost viewers (& money, as a result), they’d consider change. Anyway, that’s a different topic for a different day. Point is, I decided to write this post because I wanted to share some thoughts on womanhood from a Biblical perspective in a time when people (even Christian women) seem to be so very confused. THAT is my only standard when considering my response to something. It’s not about my feelings…it’s about the Word of God. What does the Word of God say about this issue? Based on what we know about God’s character and Jesus’ life on this earth, how would He respond?

I am so thankful for mine and my husband’s specific roles. We aren’t perfect, and there are some things we each do to lighten one another’s burden. That’s what being a TEAM and being united as ONE is all about. But to be honest, I am THANKFUL to be a woman. Jonathan has to carry a HUGE weight as our protector and provider- and those are burdens I would not and do not want to carry. That I’m not even equipped to carry.

I can, yes, but again, I’d be operating outside of my God-given nature. And ladies, there is SAFETY in being in God’s will. I picture it as an umbrella of protection and absolutely LOVE this visual.

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I love being a woman. And yes, I consider myself a strong one. I’m capable, I’m educated, I’m strong. I have a voice, and it matters.

But…I LOVE my role as a nurturer, as a caretaker, and as the minister of our home. I love supporting my husband. I love preparing healthy meals for my family, snuggling babies, teaching them and playing with them, and keeping a clean house. I love being a homemaker. I love encouraging other women. I love helping my husband run our businesses & contributing to our household. I love being able to serve in different areas outside of our home & ministering to others in need. 

And because we have our home in order, we have a rock solid marriage. Not a perfect one. But man, it’s good. I respect Jonathan more than any other man that I know. (I mean that.) And guess what? He respects me IMMENSELY in return! He highly values my opinion and there are plenty of areas he is 100% comfortable with me making decisions because he trusts me that deeply. I feel loved and valued by him. And he feels loved and respected by me. We are different, we are equal, and we each celebrate and enjoy our roles within our God-given nature.

Can we start celebrating femininity instead of feminism??

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I know this post won’t be popular with the world, but we are called to be “set apart.” If we are fitting in with the world and our values are lining up with theirs, we have major problems.

GOD is our authority.

His Word is our standard.

We should work to operate within those truths. And the only way we can do that is to know what it says. That is my goal- to help women understand what we have been called to based on the Lord’s instructions for our life given in the Bible. Again, you may disagree with me, but if you’re a believer, you shouldn’t disagree with the Word of God. Look up these verses when you get a chance…

  • 1 Timothy 3:11
  • Ephesians 5:22-23
  • 1 Peter 3:1-2
  • Titus 2:3-5
  • 1 Timothy 2:9-15
  • Genesis 2: 18-24
  • Proverbs 31

Monday, January 23, 2017

Jade’s Baby Shower

My sister-in-law Jade (“Aunt Jimmy”) and I are due two days apart with our sweet babies. I was SO excited to find out she was expecting. Babies are such a blessing!! (And we were even more excited to find out her and Will are having our first GIRL!)

She has been a rock star for her first pregnancy. She feels good & never really complains. I’m so thankful she’s had a good pregnancy, and it’s been fun to be pregnant together. (Especially so close because we are going through most of the same things at the same time.) I wish I was going to be able to help her a little more during the actual labor/delivery and after the baby comes, but I’ll probably be pretty tied up myself with Baby Beau.

We helped host a baby shower brunch for her in Dahlonega this past Saturday. The Dahlonega Women’s Club/Community House was an adorable venue! Jonathan said he had baseball banquets there when he was a little kid, and their grandparents had their 50th anniversary celebration there years ago, so it was sentimental too.

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Everything turned out beautiful! Happy Mom & Dad to-be!

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I love adding fresh fruit to add some flavor to water, & the baptist punch recipe is always a hit.

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Loved the way the monogram turned out! My sweet friend Lindy made it (Check out Picket Fence Creations on etsy) & Jimmy (Papa- Jonathan & Jade’s dad) got to paint it for her. I thought that was really sweet. It’s going to look so cute about Kayton’s crib!

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My mom (party/shower/Pinterest queen) made the super cute little individual pudding and parfait cups.

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I brought Jonathan home one of the red velvet bundt cakes and he said it was delicious.

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She looks so great!! Beautiful & glowing.

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Loved this sweet picture of them while we were praying for Kayton.

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Gift time! They got all kinds of great things. I was a little surprised no one knew what the Angel Care Monitor/Snuza Hero were. Along with a new car seat, these are my top two splurge recommendations (that are a necessity) for a new baby. Probably going to write a blog post on them soon…

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Her cute little niece loved helping open presents.

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Shout out to my sister Tammie for taking pictures for us. My family loves Jade and they were so excited to be able to come celebrate with her.

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#cousins

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So, so very happy for Will & Jade. Cannot wait to welcome sweet Baby Kayton!!

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