baby

10 Commandments of Pregnancy: For the Preggos Themselves

Over the past several months, my beloved hubby and I have been privileged to experience the joy of pregnancy. This lil one has been cooking for 8 months now– and we have learned A LOT. (I know, I know– the real learning doesn’t start til he/she gets here. But we have learned/grown in the meantime.)

I have published a couple of humorous (yet true) posts in the past dealing with the 10 Commandments of Pregnancy for Husbands and 10 Commandments of Pregnancy for Friends/Family/Strangers. Both articles have been well-received, but honestly, I was feeling a bit left out.

That’s right. Today’s post is all about the 10 Commandments of Pregnancy… for the preggos themselves.

Some of you might be saying, “Wait, wait, WHOA! I am (or have been) one of the preggos… Don’t tell me what to do. I will cut you.”  

RELAX. Back the procreation-truck up. This isn’t a list of do’s and don’ts or crazy opinions. And yes, as a pregnant person myself, I totally agree with the idea of doing what we want– to a point. (Even I need boundaries. Or things are gonna get crazy all up in here.)

So don’t be offended by these soft boundaries or thoughts… Just make sure your sense of humor is intact… and laugh right along with me 🙂

Let’s do this.

1. Thou shalt not make irrational weight excuses… or get too caught up with the numbers on the scale. This one goes both ways– I have talked to former pregnant gals who gained excessive weight during pregnancy… not because they were underweight to start with or had health complications, but just strictly because of their choices. I’ve heard some crazy excuses (I was stressed/tired/moody/it just made sense to eat three bags of Doritos at once.)  I totally get the semi-crazy eating habits every now and then– but for 9 months straight seems a little much. Also, for some of us who are rather cautious about trying to be responsible and NOT gain too much weight, that’s great– but we shouldn’t go so far as to lose our minds every time we step on the scale at the doctor’s office. We are, after all, growing a baby!

2. Thou shalt give thyself grace. This ties into #1… and really to all of these commandments. While the baby growing part of pregnancy is kind of science-based… the method/moods/behavior aren’t so much. We all have our good and not-so-good days. Give yourself some grace. Jesus does!

3. Thou shalt not overdo use of the “Pregnancy” card. This “card” is a powerful tool in our arsenal… if played correctly, it can earn us foot or back rubs from our beloved, a bowl of ice cream in the evening after supper (that we did not have to scoop) and help around the house. HOWEVER… once we start to abuse the pregnancy card, it loses all power. Play it carefully.

4. Thou shalt use the pregnancy card– and accept help when needed. Sigh. Swallowing our pride is hard (or maybe it’s just me.) We don’t have family within a thousand mile radius, so I have been forced to get over my desire to do it all… We are made to live in community. So live it up. Let someone cook you supper and offer to throw you a shower. Or give you things for your new addition.  Oh, and on a related note– definitely play the preggo card take advantage of the “expectant mother” parking– especially when you are rocking a pretty sweet waddle.

5. Thou shalt not freak out.  Ok, this commandment is MUCH easier said than done, especially as a new mama. It seems like every day of pregnancy, there is a new, awkward symptom that makes you raise an eyebrow and wonder “Is that normal?” Chances are… it probably is. Pregnancy is beautiful– but weird. Regardless of what you are going through, don’t freak out. Pray about it and call your doc if you are super concerned… And even if something crazy is going on– don’t freak out. God’s got your back! Oh, and on that note…

6. Thou shalt avoid Google at all costs. If you google your questions and symptoms, then click on the first few sites, it WILL make you freak out. Every time. Guaranteed. Even if your inquiry is as simple as “how to install a crib bumper.” The top 50 sites will be about how crib bumpers cause SIDS and you will spend the rest of the evening rocking in your chair half panic-sobbing to your mom on the phone asking if you are going to be  terrible mother because you want a crib bumper in the nursery. (Not that I would know…)

7. Thou shalt embrace the new you. Most preggos are adorable. Assume you fit in that category and work your new look. It’s one of the few times in our lives where we can gain 30 pounds in 9 months and still look stunning. And if the “new you” is feeling like a beached whale as you approach the end– keep in mind that there is a profound purpose to your body changes– and soon you will get to meet him/her!

8. Thou shalt reserve the right to complain– every now and then… but not too much. This goes along with commandments #3 & #4. It’s true that pregnancy is uncomfortable– from the lack of sleep, to heartburn, to ahem other digestive issues, to swollen body parts… It can be super bluck somedays. But on those days, cash in your preggo card to get a massage from the hubby… Or perhaps spend a little more time with Jesus asking for help (That one ALWAYS works.)

9. Thou shalt enjoy the experience. You have been chosen to be a very important part of an incredible Jesus arts and craft project… It is truly a miracle. Live it up, sister!

10. Thou shalt pray–a lot– and depend on God– at all times. Not only can we calm our potentially anxious hearts by turning to God, but we can ask for support and protection of those sweet people in our lives who are walking with us in this journey. We can give thanks. We can pursue Him daily. We are all in this together… And Jesus is behind it all. Don’t forget that… (And pregnancy brain is no excuse 😉 )

Can you relate? Which commandment is most true (or untrue) for you? Do you have your own to add? Comment below.

Oh… And let me know how I can pray for you– preggo or not…

Thanking Jesus for this Baby Bump Miracle,
SGK

family pic preggo

“I’ve kept my feet on the ground, I’ve cultivated a quiet heart. Like a baby content in its mother’s arms, my soul is a baby content.” ~Psalm 131:2 MSG

Categories: baby | Tags: , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

10 Commandments of Pregnancy: For Husbands

Pregnancy is… weird.

Sure it’s beautiful, cool, entertaining and overall MIND BLOWING, but really, this whole growing a baby thing is just weird.

I promised you sweet readers weeks ago when we announced the coming of our first baby that this would not turn into a pregnancy blog. And it’s not. There are plenty of other folks out there that are way more knowledgeable (and less hormonal) to provide you valuable info in that category.

However, this post idea has been marinating in my pregnant brain for a few weeks, so we are going to have a little bit of fun today. (Hopefully you ALWAYS have fun when you stop by 7 Days Time… But perhaps today will be a new kind of humor.)

So yes, my darling husband and I are expecting our first baby in February. We are well over the halfway point and the third trimester is looming in T minus a month or so. In this first stretch of pregnancy, we have learned a lot… about growing babies, about each other and yes, even about Jesus.

If you have had a baby, are currently pregnant, know someone who is pregnant or especially if you are a husband of a pregnant gal, this post is for you. Feel free to share, and please comment below with your OWN “commandments” for being pregnant <or dealing gracefully with a pregnant woman. Creativity encouraged.>

(By the way: My hubby and I kind of co-wrote the following– some of them are from our experience, while others are inside jokes we wanted to share with you. Sense of humor is vital!)

Wait… You said WHAT? (This is my preggo warning look. Scary, I know.)

Ready? And now, we proudly present in no particular order, the Ten Commandments for Husbands with Pregnant Wives!

1. Thou shalt not eat the last of your wife’s “pregnancy food.” This includes all items purchased during a “craving” moment… just because the craving has passed for now, don’t assume it won’t come back. It also includes all “easy meals,” leftovers and anything involving chocolate. When in doubt, ask permission. Otherwise (in my husband’s words) your wife “may destroy you.”

2. Thou shalt prepare thyself for her hormonal mood swings. Know that she can go from sweet and darling one minute to hysterical over something seemingly small the next. Oh. And never, EVER laugh at these changes, no matter how random/entertaining/goofy they might seem.

3. Thou shalt never refer to her as any kind of bovine– aka, milk cow.  It doesn’t matter if she gives you play-by-play of her changing body, her yearnings to drink more milk and the idea that she will soon potentially be able to produce milk to feed a tiny child. Even if, on a good-humored day, she taught you a cheer from Universal Cheerleading Camp about milk: “Don’t gimme no pop, no pop, don’t gimme no tea, no tea, just gimme that milk, moo, moo, moo, moo, just gimme that milk, moo, moo, moo, moo.”

4. Thou shalt be enthusiastic about week-by-week updates of the baby’s growth. Yes, even if you have to fake it a little bit. “Wow, honey! Week 22!! Our baby’s eyelids are fully developed AND it’s the size of a spaghetti squash! Cool!” (It does not matter if you do not know what a spaghetti squash is. Google it.)

5. Thou shalt be interested in all things baby. It doesn’t matter if you don’t understand the difference between an Exersaucer or a walker or a Pack-N-Play. Engage. Participate. Even if you have to feign interest. Your wife will LOVE you for it! (See commandment #4.)

6. Thou shalt not brag about how great you feel, how much weight you lost, or how well you slept. Chances are, she doesn’t feel great, she weighs more than she has in previous seasons of life, and she is not sleeping well. Instead of her being overjoyed for you, it will probably activate commandment #2.

7. Thou shalt not make a huge deal about the awesome foods you are eating or how much you ate of it. Avoid talking about how great that bratwurst at Oktoberfest tasted or how refreshing your homemade beer was as it sloshed down your throat. If you ignore this commandment, you risk being thwacked… or having your shoes puked on.

8. Thou shalt never utter the following phrases: “Calm DOWN, wife.” or “Wow, you are getting SO HUGE!” or “It’s all in your head.” Self explanatory.

9. Thou shalt be aware of your “smells” and keep them to a minimum. Keep in mind that a whiff of your smelly army work boots or you noshing on your favorite Limburger cheese could send your wife running to the bathroom… And then running after you when she gets done.

10. Thou shalt support and pray with (and for) your wife regularly. Pregnancy, especially the first one (in our opinion) is exciting, confusing, emotional and yes, even a little scary. Always be willing to take ahold of your wife’s hand or stroke her hair and say, “Let’s pray about this, sweetheart.” Always point her back to Christ in moments of emotions, fear or doubt. After all– you both have been invited to participate in the coolest Jesus arts and craft project ever… TOGETHER, as husband and wife.

“May your father and mother be glad; may she who gave you birth rejoice!” ~Proverbs 23:25

Categories: baby, Family | Tags: , , , , , , | 25 Comments

25 Reasons Why Moms Rock

“But Moooooooommmmmmmmmm…”

“Mom, you just don’t understand.” 

“Whatever, Mom.” 

Aaahhh, the sweet, sweet sounds of my childhood. (My teenage years were kind of brutal. Just ask my parents. Apparently, I had something called an “attitude.” Pshaw. Whatever 😉 )

Fortunately, I am well on the other side of my teen years and my beloved Mama and I no longer butt heads. (At least not like we used to.) In fact, she is my best friend. It’s amazing what a little personal maturity can do for a gal. (Talking about you, Mama. Just kidding…)

Love my Mamas. ❤

Just in case you didn’t get the memo, yesterday was Mother’s Day. (If you didn’t call, text, or acknowledge your Mom, I will allow a brief blog intermission for you to panic and subsequently rectify the situation.)

Are we good? Ok, great. So yeah, yesterday was Mother’s Day. And for the first time in my adult history (at least I think?), I actually had a chance to celebrate Mother’s Day WITH my Mama. Yes, folks, she is spending a few days in Georgia with me. This is a big deal… because I haven’t seen her since Christmas, and this is her first time in Georgia since we moved here over a year ago.

We’ve had a great time. Scratch that. It’s been incredible. I love that woman.  In the days I have spent with her (and the days leading up to her arrival) I couldn’t help but think about why my mom (and moms in general) simply rock. They are just so awesome.

Thus, in honor of Mother’s Day, I have compiled 25 Reasons Why Moms Rock. (Feel free to forward this to your Mom in case you forgot to acknowledge her awesomeness yesterday.) Let’s praise Jesus for the gift of our Mamas! Drumroll please…

25 Reasons Why Moms Rock

  1. They love you unconditionally.
  2. Moms always know what to say.
  3. They know what NOT to say.
  4. Their hugs are unbeatable.
  5. They ALWAYS have that one recipe that you need… memorized.
  6. Moms laugh at your jokes… whether you are funny or not.
  7. They give great advice.
  8. When angry, their voice can be projected and heard up to 3.64 miles away.
  9. They are great nurses when you are sick.
  10. They are so good at drying tears.
  11. Moms always have the cool band-aids on hand.
  12. There is always something good to eat in their fridge.
  13. You can sit together in silence with your Mom and it’s not awkward.
  14. Their eyes have the sweetest little laugh-induced wrinkles.
  15. Moms are the ultimate cheerleaders.
  16. They are supreme holiday tradition-setters.
  17. The things they taught you in your youth stick with you… forever.
  18. They don’t get stuck on “biological requirements” to be a Mom.
  19. They are Moms to every child under 17 in the neighborhood. (See #18.)
  20. They are resourceful.
  21. Their remedy of “eat some chocolate and get a hot bath” will fix almost anything.
  22. The Mother of the Bride/Grooms are ALWAYS the prettiest people at weddings. (Bride excluded)
  23. They pray for you. A LOT.
  24. You can always call them. Anytime.
  25. They were HAND HEART-PICKED by God.

Why does YOUR Mom rock? Please feel free to add to this list by leaving a comment HERE. 

To all the Mama’s out there (My Mama CJ and Mother-in-Love Lex specifically) THANK YOU for being such great role models and influences on our lives. You are truly a gift from God, and I pray that your legacy lives on for generations.

Thanking The Father for our Mamas,
SGK

“Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” –Proverbs 31:28-29 

Categories: adoption, baby, blessing, cheerleader, childhood, chocolates, Christ, Love, parents, patience | Tags: , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Helping Hands & Burgers for Babies (Factor of 7)

Did everyone see the awesome article in The Bayonet yesterday documenting our latest “Factor of 7: Latte Love?” If you read it and were inspired, I have some GREAT news for you… You can share the love of Jesus RIGHT NOW!

Mandy Gramkow is a friend of mine from college, a fellow blogger, a wife, a mama to two precious little ones and a daughter of Christ.  She ran across 7 Days time and realized that she was actually in the middle of her own Factor of 7. Team Gramkow’s journey of faith will simply blow you away, so please check out her message below to answer her call of sharing the love of Christ!

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Our miracle preemie, Beckett was born at 2 lbs. 2.6 oz. at 25 weeks gestation. During our a 88 day NICU stay, we walked alongside so many parents who were in need of support of this difficult journey. Beckett’s neonatologist, Dr.Grubbs, and his wife Lisa founded NICU Helping Hands here in Fort Worth, Texas. Team Gramkow believes in their mission to helping families who endure a NICU journey.

Our Beckett turned SEVEN months on Monday….So in honor of Beckett’s SEVEN month birthday, we would love to have SEVEN people pledge to donate TODAY to our fundraising efforts for NICU Helping Hands. We only have SEVEN DAYS to reach our goal of $2,500 to get a table at Burgers for Babies! The Burgers for Babies event is here in Fort Worth on May 10! May 1st is the deadline for us to receive donations. 

We are so appreciative of any support you can lend to this cause. God’s blessings to you! 

Love,
Team Gramkow (Ben, Mandy, Ellie and Beckett) 

(See Beckett’s 7-month birthday challenge blog post  for complete information and how to make your donation today!!)

Ellie and Beckett... Celebrating God's faithfulness! High Five!

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Wow, folks. That is powerful stuff, huh? I personally have been following Team Gramkow’s journey ever since Ellie was also born prematurely at 28 weeks in 2008. They are such a powerful testimony to God’s love and faithfulness! As of this writing, Team Gramkow has received donations totaling $1300. Pray about this opportunity to share the love of Christ. And if you feel so led, then pay it forward by making a love offering to this wonderful mission. Don’t delay– we only have 5 days left to help them out!

If this story has touched your heart, don’t hesitate to show the love via leaving a comment here or making a donation. Every little bit counts. Remember that you will be part of Helping Hands, Burgers for Babies AND multiplying HIS love by much more than a Factor of 7!!

Little babies and great love,
SGK

“Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”–Matthew 19:14

PS: HUGE congrats to our Latte Love winner Tina (Aka GoldenPrayerBear) over at Pot of Manna!!! You have won a Starbucks gift card! (I will be in touch with you asap to get info) Thanks to all of you who shared the love of our ministry and left encouraging comments… Keep ’em coming 🙂

Categories: baby, blessing, challenge, Christ, Factor of 7, faith, Family, generosity, God, Love | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Ohhhh Baby…

Here are my top five reasons why I know that A) God is always in and control and B) Has a remarkable sense of humor.

  1. He made the Platypus. A mammal, with a bill, that lays eggs. That’s hilarious.
  2. He allows us to use phrases like “army logic” and “productive Monday” and “jumbo shrimp.”
  3. He somehow distorts how long two minutes is depending on which side of the bathroom door you are on.
  4. Kansas Jayhawks. (Sorry, KU fans… Just kidding. But seriously.)
  5. He thought it would be legit to send my husband to Ranger school right about the time we found out we are going to have a baby.

That’s right, America. The Knoblochs are procreating. Ohhh, Baby.

I don’t want to get into too many details (I mean, I do have some dude readers after all) but let’s just say this whole having a baby thing is a lot for this army wife to handle. Yes, we were kind of trying. (And by kind of trying, I mean me giving control completely up to God to let HIM decide when we should have a baby… which for me as a person who LOVES control, says a lot.)

Apparently now is good. Or, more specifically, sometime mid-October-ish when the kid actually shows up.

Please don’t mistake my blatant and excessive sarcasm as negative… This is a good thing. For real. I am excited to be a mama. But it’s just kind of a lot to take in knowing that my husband is doing his army thing with no form of communication except snail-mail letters for at least the next 9 weeks and me literally 1,000 miles from family.

Um, yeah. Yikes. YAY!

I don’t find it ironic at all that my “word” for 2012 is “Dependence.” I think God knew I was getting comfortable, handling things really well, and said that it was time to shake things up a bit and bring me back to Him.

For those of you who don’t know me super well, yes, this is our first child. And yes I am excited, scared, overwhelmed, moody, easily brought to tears, thrilled, exhausted… Just FYI, that cycle of emotions usually repeats itself every 18 seconds. Super fun.

With this news, I ask for your prayers… Please pray for this tiny blueberry of a baby, for it to grow healthy for God’s glory. Pray for my preggo emotions, that I can keep my mind focused on Christ and He can calm ALL of my anxious thoughts. Please pray for my fears to transition to faith and that I can fully relax and enjoy this beautiful blessing God has given us!

And please pray for my husband’s safe and successful (and swift!) journey through Ranger school, so he can get back here ASAP to help me grow this baby by rubbing my feet, handing me Kleenexes when I cry at diaper commercials and feed me items drenched in ketchup. (Ketchup and egg drop soup are current cravings. Bizarre.)

Source: cafepress.com

So today, let’s celebrate as I  continue to try and process this exciting scary awesome news. I trust God knows what He is doing (and I just have to keep reminding my hormonally emotional brain this fact!) We can depend on Him in all things, no matter what kind of life surprise He gives you. Yeah, even those surprises that make you want to faint, scream, throw up, celebrate and shout “Ohhhhhh BABY!!”

I trust you Jesus,

SGK

“I’ve kept my feet on the ground, I’ve cultivated a quiet heart. Like a baby content in its mother’s arms, my soul is a baby content.” Psalm 131:2

Categories: adventure, army, baby, dependence, excited, faith, fear | Tags: , , , , , , | 15 Comments

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