It’s a good thing Clarissa had a change of heart…

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Until the end of last week, Clarissa was pretty adamant that she wanted a little brother. I was confused because she spent the past three years asking for a little sister. She finally told me why.

She doesn’t want to share her toys. An only child for five years gets used to having her own things. Clarissa assumed that if she had a baby sister, she would grow up to want to play with all of her toys. But a little brother would ignore her girly toys and play with his own. When I explained that a little brother would want to play with her toys too, she was very confused.

On Monday, the realtor asked Clarissa if she wanted a brother or a sister. She responded “both” and kissed my tummy.

We had an ultrasound on Tuesday. The doctor asked if we wanted to know the gender of the baby and we all said “Yes!” The translator said, “It’s probably a girl.” Clarissa was very upset, but not for the reason that you think. She said, “But is it a boy or a girl? Why don’t they know for sure?”

I guess Tim will name all of our children. The name Clarissa was his idea and it took a few days to grow on me. This time it did not take as long.

As we were walking out of the hospital, he said, “What do you think about Tiffany?” Tiffany means manifestation of God. Upon further research, Tiffany is a translation of the word epiphany and is often given to girls born on January 6. We actually found out that we were pregnant on January 6.

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By the time we arrived at dinner, the three of us agreed that her name is Tiffany Grace so “manifestation of God and grace.” This is the perfect name for her. If we got pregnant when we first started trying, she would be due in June which would be either very difficult or not possible with our PCS (moving) date. This way, our furniture that will take at least 3 months to arrive to our new house should arrive in August. We will have plenty of time to get our new home set up and comfortable before Tiffany comes in mid September. We didn’t know the timing of any of this, but God knew. And it also fits with the word that God gave me in the beginning of the pregnancy that “mercy and grace would follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” Tim also had a vision a while ago that this child would be in ministry.

We of course followed dinner with a trip to the px to find some cute little girl clothes. We each had a different favorite, so we bought them all.

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I think that the reason that we could not tell the gender at the last ultrasound was that four weeks ago Clarissa was adamantly against having a baby sister. Now Clarissa is very excited about her baby sister. I think it helps that she has a name now too.

Clarissa’s announcement

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When I was a summer camp counselor, we used to sing this song at mealtime.

“Announcements, announcements, announcements. What a horrible death to die. What a horrible death to die. What a horrible death to be talked to death. What a horrible death to die. Announcements, announcements, (begin obnoxiously long drumroll of kids hitting the table) annnoooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwncements. ”

And then a particular male counselor would always say,” I sold my cow…. ” and the program director would give us whatever announcements we needed to hear.

I was hoping to make a few announcements all at once. But an official offer for Tim is taking forever. And we have pretty much already told everyone our other secret. So we decided to announce them on the blog separately.

Clarissa has been asking for a little sister since she was two years old. For a long time she was adamant that she wanted a little sister, then it was two sisters (the backseat of the car can fit 3 carseats), and if it was a boy we should give him back. Last spring she started saying that she wanted a sister AND a brother. By summer, she was like, “I don’t care if it’s a boy or a girl. Just ask God to put a baby in your tummy.”

Clarissa is finally getting her wish. Baby Faust is due September 21, 2019. At first, Clarissa was pretty adamant that she wanted both a brother and a sister- twins! In the beginning, I thought it might be twins because the day that I found out that I was pregnant God told me that “Mercy and grace will follow me all the days of my life.” So I figured we would have two girls with the middle names Mercy and Grace. Interestingly though when I looked up the verse it is actually, “Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” (Psalm 23:6) But God doesn’t only speak in Bible verses so I am going to go with mercy and grace…

But there is only one baby in there. So now Clarissa has decided that she would prefer a brother. That way, she can be Eva when she plays Wakfu and her brother can be Dally…But if it’s a girl, we are allowed to keep her.

We are all excited about this new addition to the family. Well, I’m not sure about Mittens. Tim and I are happy and Clarissa is thrilled. She kisses my tummy multiple times per day and pretty much tells everyone we see in person, “Mommy has a baby in her tummy!”

We have some idea of where baby Faust will be born, but nothing is official yet. Our DEROS (the end of Tim’s contract) is April 30, so we will likely have ample time to get settled in and have our belongings from Korea arrive before baby comes.

Pregnancy Tips

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Congratulations on becoming a mom! Whether you expected to become pregnant now or not, congratulations! God has chosen you to be the mom for this baby. No one else will be able to love or care for this child the way that you can.

Being a mom is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. But it is also probably the best thing ever. There is nothing like watching your baby sleep or cuddling for hours.

There are a ton of websites, articles, and books about being pregnant. I wrote a post about my favorite pregnancy books. You can read as much or as little as you want.

I have a few of my own pregnancy tips for you.

1. Don’t worry about what all of your other pregnant friends are doing.

I was pregnant at the same time as several other people from church. They were all on kid two, three, or four. It was my first baby, so I didn’t know what to expect. As long as I kept eating, I didn’t get sick. They were all sick and not eating. Naturally, I gained ten pounds in the first trimester and freaked out because they had all lost weight. I thought for sure that I would gain 100 pounds with my baby. But I didn’t. I just ate when I was hungry and ate what I was craving. I did really well.

2. Listen to your body. Eat when you are hungry. Sleep when you are tired.

3. Get good prenatal care. Thanks to the Affordable Healthcare Act, most insurance companies cover prenatal care. You and your baby will be healthier if you do.

4. Take a prenatal vitamin. That being said…

5. Eat what you are craving. Your body knows what it needs. In the beginning, I wanted a lot of chocolate. I realized that if I had a banana everyday, I didn’t crave the chocolate. My body needed the magnesium or potassium or something.

6. Get some exercise. It doesn’t have to be much. I just walked my dog each day. 15 minute walk. That was it. But it helped me to have a little more energy in the afternoon. I also slept better and didn’t get as stiff.

7. Set up a support system. You are going to need help when baby arrives, in more ways than you know. Join a mom’s group at your church or through the recreation center in your area. Talk to friends who are already moms.

8. Drink plenty of water. Some recommend drinking half your body weight in ounces. I know you already need to use the bathroom a lot, but trust me on this. You will have more energy and it will prevent dehydration as well as constipation.