Mothers of Television and Hollywood: Where I Find Most of My Inspiration

Yes, we have established that I am a nerd. A large portion of my nerdiness is solely devoted to television. Thus, when thinking about the type of mom I hope to be one day, much of my inspiration has come from television or movies. So I thought I would collect my favorites into one article. Without further ado, here are my top 5 Moms of TV.

Lorelai Gilmore

“Gilmore Girls”

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Is this a surprise to anyone? Lorelai Victoria Gilmore is absolutely my number one TV mom. Not only did she raise her daughter to believe in herself and support her every step of the way – even during the married-Dean-and-stupid-Rory moment or that dark time in season 6 that we won’t talk about – but she did it with flair and crazy amounts of love. This show is obviously my favorite, but I think Lorelai would have made the list even if it weren’t. She’s the perfect example of a tv mom. I cannot begin to list all of the many, many, many scenes in which she proved what an insane and perfect mother she was. Although Rory’s first break up with Dean, Rory’s first night at Yale, Rory’s struggle through her junior year of university, and their reunion scene come to mind. Lorelai’s ambitious work attitude, witty repertoire, fabulous love of fashion and never-ending love for her child have encouraged many single and married moms alike for over a decade now. The day this show ended was a very sad day indeed. But Lorelai Gilmore’s motherly inspiration will live forever. (And hopefully be manifested again in a movie!) She is exactly what I hope to be to my baby come February 2015 (except I will have an amazing and supportive husband to help me through the long nights and endless screams I am anxiously awaiting.) I love Lorelai Gilmore and soon you’ll see how much.

Haley James Scott

“One Tree Hill”

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Oh, how I love Haley James Scott. She is intelligent, funny, passionate, kind, and an all-around fantastic mom! If you’ve watched the show, you will not soon forget the almost too-adorable scenes between Haley and Jamie. She was a young first-time mom that learned and matured with her husband. She always fought for her family, never giving up on their bond despite Nathan’s horrible accident or her severe depression. Haley survived it all and just when everything was perfect, she had another adorable baby – a little girl this time – giving us a glimpse of what pregnant Haley is like: silly, emotional, and oh so cute.

Molly Weasley

“Harry Potter”

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There should never be a list of inspirational fictional moms without Molly Weasley. The woman had seven children for heaven’s sake – six of those children being boys! She kept her full house orderly, clean and running smoothly. But none of those traits make her the wonderful mother she inspires in me. No, that would be her devotion to her husband and children, her fierce love and the scene when she killed Bellatrix Lestrange. If you’re being honest with yourself, then you will admit that that scene is one of the best mom scenes of all time. I wish I could quote the infamous line, but I’ll restrain myself. Every reader (and film watcher) will remember the pain they felt for her when she lost Fred and the reverence for Molly when she comforted her family through her own grief. Yes, Molly Weasley is amazing.

Charlotte York

“Sex and the City”

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Charlotte Pregnant in Sex and The City Movie

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This TV mom spoke directly to my infertile heart throughout the show. We watched as she searched for her perfect Prince Charming – and eventually found him in Harry. I was so happy as she began her life with Harry, her imperfect Mr. Perfect. He was awesome and I couldn’t wait to see them have a baby because surely the writers were going to write a baby into the show for this sweet on-screen couple. But I will never forget the episode after her miscarriage, when she bravely got dressed, inspired by Elizabeth Taylor, and walked out of her apartment in the large frame sunglasses to attend her best friend’s son’s birthday party. And then she did find her happily-ever-after with Harry when they adopted Lily and later had their miracle, Rose. And one more reason I loved Charlotte York was her very real struggle as a mom with two young girls and trying to be perfect. When she locked herself in the pantry to hide for just a moment from her life. I think that hit the nail on the head for many moms and encouraged me to remember that it’s okay to not be perfect and to never give up.

Fran Drescher

“The Nanny”

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Although she was not technically their mother but their nanny, Fran raised Mr. Sheffield’s three children – and they adored her. Who wouldn’t love a nanny/mom that is just crazy enough to teach you what you need to know plus a little more for good measure? The lessons Fran taught are not necessarily the lessons I hope to teach my children or in her manner either. But the way she loved her children, fought for them and all of this with such style – that I hope to imitate soon. Don’t get me wrong – I just loved how crazy she was! When Fran finally started dating Mr. Sheffield, everything fell into place. They dealt with miscarriage together and then when they got pregnant, what a journey it was to watch! So much leopard print!

Old Wives’ Tales

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Some gender-predicting old wives’ tales are just plain ridiculous, some are funny, and some make me wonder…what do YOU think Lovebug will be? He or She? Just three weeks until we see!

What Momma Thinks This tale simply states that momma’s intuition knows best. Since I found out that Lovebug was inside me, I have felt like this precious miracle was a boy…just like his Daddy. Boy

Dreams If a momma dreams that baby is certain gender, it will be the opposite. Well I have had three dreams about gender since conceiving. Two were girl dreams and one was a boy. So I’m going to say that this tale results in Boy.

Morning Sickness If the momma has morning sickness throughout her pregnancy, she is carrying a girl…Girl

Momma’s Body This has been, by leaps and bounds, the most funny of old wives tales because I have had THREE ladies tell me what I’m having solely based on my rear end. One lady simply said, “Turn around. I’ll tell you what you’re having.” It was one of the best gender-guessing moments so far. This myth states that if the mom is carrying low or narrow, it’s a boy. If the mom is carrying high or wide, it’s a girl. I’ve also read – very similar to the first part – that gaining weight in the hips and thighs means a girl, while extra weight in the front means a boy. Well two ladies said boy and one said girl. So this myth is Inconclusive – Maybe Boy.

Cravings Almost every tale I’ve read about cravings state that if you are craving sweets then you are having a girl. If you are craving salty food, you are having a boy. Clearly this result is a boy because all I want to eat is tomato soup, bacon, and granola bars. Occasionally, it’s grapes. But mostly just salty delights. Boy

Pregnancy Glow Let’s just say I’m not a fan of this lovely myth: If the baby steals your beauty (aka: you have acne, your hair isn’t as luscious anymore, or you feel ugly…) it’s a girl. On the contrary, if you feel more beautiful than ever…you’re having a boy. Sadly, this myth for this mommy means Girl.

Sympathy Weight This one makes me giggle. If Daddy gains weight while Momma is pregnant, it’s a girl. Which makes Team Cox a Team Pink. Girl

Heart Rate If the baby’s heart rate is higher than 140, it’s a girl. If lower than 140, it’s a boy. Girl

Chinese Gender Calendar This is win for Team Blue. Boy

Daddy’s Guess Okay, this isn’t a myth or old wives’ tale, but I think it’s pretty important to include. Daddy’s P.O.V.: Josh’s opinion is that there is a 50/50 chance, but because I am so certain it’s a boy, he is Team Pink. (Silly Daddy…doesn’t he know Momma’s almost always right?!) Girl

Big Sister’s Guess We have done several games with Genevieve to see what she thinks her little sibling will be. Her guess? It’s her healthy little HUMAN!

So now it’s your turn…tell us what you think our Lovebug will be! Are you Team Blue or Team Pink?

Why, Hello There, Second Trimester!

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Oh, happy day! My energy has somewhat returned and I am praising God for the second trimester. I suppose I could blame the pregnancy for my lack of updating the blog, but mostly I just loved spending the first three months with my hubs, the pup, and our bump. And I have a bump (albeit a very small is-she-just-gaining-weight? kind of bump)! Josh probably thinks I’m too obsessed with bump at this point, but he knew I was crazy when he married me. I talk to Lovebug constantly and sing/read to him/her too. It is by far the most surreal and joyful experience that any woman can have. The first trimester brought so many joys and too many worries. During the first three months, Josh and I went to a wedding, I saw my best friend, we went on a beautiful vacation to the mountains, Genevieve had her first summer shave and we had our first – and hopefully only – scare.

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As I’m sure all moms and dads remember, Josh and I have have come to the realization that we only have a limited amount of time remaining for just the two of us and we have begun to do more of the things we love to do that will be limited when Lovebug makes their appearance. We set a record for the number of movies we saw at the theater in one week – THREE! Dragon Ball Z, TMNT, and Guardians of the Galaxy. Yes, we know. We are nerds and perfectly happy with that fact. I’m hoping that we will have many more of these crazy and couple-only dates over the next six months (approximately 174 days from now).

After our scare at 11 weeks, hitting the 12 week benchmark was like a breath of fresh air. However, I am not sure that the anxiety will ever go away. I think this is just the beginning of motherhood – moms out there, please tell me I’m not the only one. But the 11 week mark began the chalkboard fun – so it was still a perfect week, scare or not.

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And here we are. Week 15 and feeling perfect!

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I cannot believe how time can simultaneously feel so slow yet fast. And every second of it is exciting. In addition to marking time using the chalkboard, I love the Ovia Pregnancy app! It tells you how big the baby is in such cute ways. My favorite update each week is the size of the baby’s hand. You just have to see the app to understand how adorable it is. And let me tell you…Lovebug’s little hand is getting so big. Josh likes to give it tiny high fives with his finger! Yes, we know. We are nerds. 

And…that brings the blogosphere up to date on our very joyful nest! I will soon – maybe later today – be posting a fun little bit about Old Wives Tales. Guessing the gender is definitely one of the most enjoyable aspects of pregnancy! 

PS: You should look up the verses from our chalkboard updates! Some of them are for fun, some for seriousness. Either way, God’s Word is such an integral part of our lives as Christians and you should enjoy it!

At Last Our Lovebug Has Come Along

We cannot stop smiling! We have told everyone we know (pretty much)! So why not put it out there for the world to see?

Here it is, Blogosphere…

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That little sweet pea-sized white dot is OUR LITTLE  MIRACLE!  Can you believe it? I mean, I’m still in shock. I’M PREGNANT!

Everything just seems so much brighter, lovelier and yes – you guessed it – JOYFUL! Seriously, our joyful nest is so joyful even St. Nick wouldn’t know what to do with our house. We decided to tell everyone early for a few reasons:

  • Our church is having a hard time right now and really needed the good (perfect) news.
  • That is 100’s of more prayers for this little miracle.
  • We are going to celebrate EVERY DAY that we have this little miracle in our lives!

You are more than welcome to celebrate with us as we praise God for blessing us with this gift.

“I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.”

I Samuel 1:27-28

Good Morning, Love

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“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the father of heavenly lights.”

James 1:17

I am blessed and praise God for those blessings! Join me this Monday morning in praising God for all of the wonderful things he is doing in our lives! Praise his holy name!

Designing and Whatnot

Throughout my work days, I have moments of quiet (among days full of chaos) and I love to design new printables! Recently, Josh and I have been decorating and reorganizing our entire apartment. So when I design new printables, they have been for this purpose. I just wanted to share a few with you. Simply click on the link below the picture you like and download the PDF. Easy Peas-y!

You're Never Fully Dressed

You’re Never Fully Dressed

We Love

We Love

Wait Upon the Lord

Wait Upon the LORD

Praise God

Praise God

Love Is Spoken Here

Love is Spoken Here

Love Is Spoken Here - Pink

Love is Spoken Here – Pink

How Sweet It Is

How Sweet It Is

1 John 4.8

1 John 4-8

Please feel free to download and print for your own personal use!

My “How To” for Dealing with Bitterness and Envy

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In Romans 7:14-25, Paul writes of his struggle against sin:

14 So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. 15 I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.16 But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. 17 So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.

18 And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[a] I want to do what is right, but I can’t. 19 I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. 20 But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.

21 I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. 22 I love God’s law with all my heart. 23 But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. 24 Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.

Does this repetitive monologue resound with any of your hearts? I am not sure about you, but every day I find myself struggling to be like Christ. Lately the struggles that I am facing are bitterness and envy. As friends, coworkers, acquaintances and strangers announce pregnancies and births, bitterness and envy seem to gain more and more power in my heart. I keep asking myself why I let these sins do this to my soul, but I cannot find the answer.

I relate to Paul in this message he is writing because i, too, cannot seem to control these sins. This then causes my head and heart to do a dance of “This is not what you should be feeling. – This is how I feel! I can’t control it!”

So how are we, as Christ-followers, supposed to overcome these sins?

I don’t know, but here is my “how to” plan:

  • Pray – I am going to pray without ceasing with “hands high, and heart abandoned.” The Scripture tells us repeatedly (Mark 11:24, Philippians 4:6-7, 1 John 3:22, Jeremiah 29:11-15…on and on) that if we seek God’s help through prayer, He will most certainly grant it. So that is what I am going to do. I am going to pray that the Lord grant me a peaceful heart and kindness for others. I am going to ask for Him to erase the bitterness and envy.
  • Give Congratulations TO EVERYONE – Sometimes, when I think that someone doesn’t deserve to be pregnant because they don’t “have their life together” or “don’t long for it like I do”, I do not give them well wishes or congratulations. So to help this bitter heart, there will be words of congratulations and praise for God when I speak to new mothers and fathers. Every baby is a miracle and my heart needs to remember this!
  • Stop Complaining – Giving congratulations is not enough, though. I want to stop complaining to Josh, my mom, and my best friend every time a new pregnancy or baby is announced. I will instead replace this negative approach with words of praise for the miracle of life!

The key here is prayer and positive thinking. After all, I still want our nest to be joyful in all situations and I think that means I need to weed out bitterness and envy! I would like to end this post with one of my favorite doxologies:

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Amen

Grocery List and Menu Planner Printables

I absolutely adore organization! So I’ve decided to share some of my organization with you. This has nothing to do with our infertility journey, but a whole lot to do with this Joyful Nest of ours.

Today I thought I would share my Grocery List and Menu Planning Printables with you. I have combed many blogs and searched Pinterest and Google for what seems like hours only to end up with my own design. I encourage you to make your own because every grocery store is set up differently and so is every wife (or hubby). We all have a personal style and you should add your own flourish! But for those that don’t have time, please feel free to use mine!

The Grocery List is easy to figure out, but I do have an odd Menu Planner. I use the same planner each week (in a clear sheet protector). There are six spaces for every day of the week – including one that is labeled Saturday/Sunday. I use Post-it Notes so that I can simply toss the Post-its when that week is done. And that’s it!

Please enjoy the Grocery List and Menu Planner for your personal use!

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And Then There Were Two (and a Half)

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First Comes Love

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Then Comes Marriage

Then Comes…

Before Josh and I started talking about a wedding or marriage, we were discussing parenthood. I remember the first time we talked about the future, after maybe a week of dating. (We are romatics. What can I say?)  We decided that two was the perfect number of children. Even our first “fight” was concerning the shoes our daughter would wear one day. (Jordans? On my princess? NO WAY, Joshua Cox!) I always played the mom or older sister in pretend games as a child. I have spent hours since middle school writing out names for my children – still do! My “Babycakes” board on Pinterest has been there since I first discovered the addictive joy of Pinterest. We have decided what our parents will be called when we make them grandparents.

You get the idea.

So six months into marriage, I stopped taking birth control. Although we knew we would not likely get pregnant immediately, I think we expected it within the average four months of trying. A friend that had recently conceived her miracle suggested a fertility app. We knew what to do. It’s not that hard, right? I mean, teenagers seem to do it all the time. We were sure it would happen soon.

But we could not have been more wrong.

If anyone has ever faced infertility, then you can understand the pain, fear, confusion, depression, loneliness, heartache, and sorrow that the last 22 months have brought Josh and I. We want our happily ever after. We want “and then comes baby in the baby carriage.” We want to start our family. And each month when the test strips tell us “NOT PREGNANT” yet again, I feel more of my hope for these things slip away. I can see myself turning into a bitter Hannah when I see more and more pregnancy announcements on social media or walk near the baby aisles of Target and Walmart.

I will write later about our particular medically infertile issues, but this post is just an introduction to our journey. And perhaps if you have never heard of infertility, this can be an introduction to the world of the empty cradles. Believe me when I tell you that it is a rather expansive world. About a year into our journey, I was blessed to discover the Instagram world of the #TTCSisters — a community of women who are all facing or have faced infertility. Two fellow TTC-ers found me on Instagram because of my PCOS hashtags. I was quickly entranced by the stories these women shared and by the support and encouragement given so lovingly! I began to feel hope once more. And now, with encouragement from these beautiful souls, I am starting this blog to share my TTC journey, to give hope to others likewise inflicted, but mostly for myself and Josh. For the hope to which we still cling. Which brings me to the title.

The title of the blog was going to be Our Empty Nest. This was chosen after hours of debate with the hubby, multiple lists, and personal reflection. But as I was attempting to create the blog, I realized that our little nest is not empty. Although my arms may not hold a baby yet, Josh and I have lives that are full. Full of Magic. Full of Laughter. Full of Beauty. Full of Fur. Full of Faith. Full of Sparkle. Full of Hope. Full of Silliness. Full of Love. So as you can see, our nest is most certainly NOT empty. It is FULL OF JOY!

Family

And so Our Joyful Nest begins…