Reviving Motherhood

Learning on the Journey


Favorite Baby Item: Arm’s Reach Co-sleeper

I wrote this little review right after Grace was born. There’s nothing in it for me–This co-sleeper is just a product I’ve found incredibly helpful.

What are your favorite baby products? Is there anything that you find really indispensable?


This is the Arm’s Reach Co-sleeper we got for our sweet new baby, Grace. I am loving it! I’ve tried just about every newborn sleeping arrangement from bassinet to pack and play to crib to full co-sleeping and none of it worked for me. This was recommended by a pediatric nurse friend, and it’s perfect. Grace is right next to me, so I can keep a close eye on her, pick her up easily (without getting out of bed), and during nursing times I don’t have to worry about dozing off and dropping her. That’s always been a big fear. The sleeper actually straps to the bed between the mattress and box springs for a nice tight fit.

She loves to sleep in my arms, but she also does really well in the co-sleeper with her foam wedges and a good swaddle. The nurses at the hospital showed me how they wrap the babies, and while I haven’t perfected their burrito swaddle, I can get her snug enough that she feels secure and sleeps well. This is my first success with getting baby to sleep on her back. I think the swaddle has something to do with it.

In any case, I wholeheartedly recommend the co-sleeper. It’s kinda pricey and at first I thought we had just bought a really expensive pack and play…It’s a lot more than that, though.

The only drawback I can think of is that it’s a bit harder for me to get in and out of bed. I have to get in from the end. However, that’s a small price to pay for a good night’s sleep!

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Parenting With Love

Parents must be what they want their children to be. If we want to keep them from the sin of Cain, who did not love his brother, let us beware of the sin of Adam, who did not love the commandment of his God. Let father and mother lead a life marked by love to God and man. This is the kind of atmosphere in which loving children can be trained. Let all your dealings with the children be done in love. Angry words, sharp reproof, and impatient answers are infectious. Love demands self-sacrifice. It takes time, attention, and perseverance to train our children in God’s ways. When our children hear us speak of others, of friends or enemies, let the impression they receive be the love of Christ we seek to show. Father and mother should also show love and respect for one another. Their considerate and unselfish attitudes should prove to the children that love is possible and has immediate rewards.

Above all, let us remember that it is the love of God that is the secret of a loving home on earth. When parents love the Lord their God with all their heart, then family love will be strengthened. Only those parents who are willing to live consecrated lives, entirely given up to God, will receive the full promise of the blessing. If we want to make our homes a foretaste of heaven, then ordinary, half-hearted religion is not enough. Only the love of God shed abroad in our hearts and our lives will make our homes on earth the likeness of the home above.

-Andrew Murray, Raising Your Children for Christ

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Fifteen Minutes!

Lately I’ve felt a bit overwhelmed. OK, I always feel a little overwhelmed, but lately it’s been more intense than usual. (Hence, no blogging.) My goal for 2008 has been to streamline, and while I’ve gone a long way toward that end, there’s still a lot to do.

I hopped over to Flylady’s web site. Flylady really helped me get my home in order when I was a new mom. Her (free) email system doesn’t work for me right now, but I definitely needed a refresher on basic principles.

Two of Flylady’s basic tenets are “You can do anything for 15 minutes,” and “My timer is my best friend.”

So for the past couple days I’ve been using my timer. Fifteen minutes in the kitchen, fifteen minutes of tidying, fifteen minutes doing something with one of the kids. (Flylady recommends a 15 minute break every hour, but I really have difficulty implementing this.) I find that the 15 minute limit helps me get more done in a short amount of time and it keeps my day more balanced. Instead of getting sidetracked with all there is in one area, I’m doing a little in each one till they are all done. I still have plenty that’s not completed, but I’m feeling a little relief from the frustration. I have to remind myself of another of Flylady’s sayings: “Baby steps!”

P.S. Apparently I can blog for 15 minutes too!

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Link Love

My sweet friend Erica gave Reviving Motherhood the Brilliante Weblog Award awhile back–and I haven’t yet acknowledged it. Thanks so much, Erica!

The rules are that you tag 7 other blogs with the award. I’m going to make up my own rules since I’m kind of rebellious like that. (Or something.) I can’t say I’m technically passing on the award, but I do want to share links to some really helpful and inspiring places. Since I can’t seem to find time to write lately, maybe this will provide some reading material for you!

1. Crafty Crow is a “children’s craft collective”. In other words, it’s a center for all kinds of simple crafts for kids, from all over the internet. How nice to have someone else do the collecting for you, yes?!

2. You might recognize Jan Brett’s name from her children’s books. She has an amazing and generous web site chock full of coloring pages, alphabet sheets, and more. There are probably hundreds of free printable pages. And cute!

3. Recently, Simple Mom wrote a series called How To Be Disorganized and Unproductive at Home. Brilliant. Lots of great ideas for streamlining and making the most of your time and energy.

4. I love to read 4 Reluctant Entertainers, which is essentially a blog about Christian hospitality. Sandy offers an abundance of ideas, recipes, and encouragement to share your home with others. Plus, it’s a treat for the eyes. Good stuff.

5. If you need a laugh and you’re one of the 3 people in the universe who does not read Confessions of a Pioneer Woman, run, don’t walk there–now. Oh my. I laugh till I cry.

6. This list wouldn’t be complete without recommending my husband’s blog, The Disciple’s Journey. What can I say? It’s great. I just wish he’d write more often. (For that matter, I should be writing more often…)

7. I absolutely love the art of Belle and Boo. Beyond cute. If I was shelling out cash for art (especially for my girls), I’d buy it here.