What This Mrs. Misses About Teaching

I am on my sixth week of maternity leave. I do not have the itch to return to work. I thank God each morning that I’m able to stay home with my baby boy. That being said, my heart does miss a few things about teaching. And I’m going to write about them because my head is still dizzy with all things baby and my mind is aching to play with words.

What This Mrs. Misses About Teaching

1.  Scholastic Book Orders


I’ve said it before, but scholastic book orders are basically why I became a teacher. I get way more excited when The Book Box arrives than when a student “gets it”. The lightbulb moment is usually gradual and often happens when I’m distracted from actually teaching the lesson to the whole class.

The Book Box allows me to slow down and take in the scent of brand new, shiny, silky books. And the look of excitement my students get over BOOKS makes me so happy. When I carry the Book Box from the office to my classroom, I hope to run into some of my students just to give them a big open mouth smile of excitement because The Book Box came!!

2. Donors Choose

The first two years I taught, like most new teachers, I spent a good chunk of my paycheck on stuff for my classroom. Decorations for the walls, prizes for my student store, stickers for days and days, fun colored white board markers, food snacks for parties, books for my class library, and the list goes on and on. I put a big halt to buying stuff for my classroom once I noticed my savings account didn’t have any… savings.

But I still wanted my kids to have a nice classroom and get to experience new things, so I wrote out requests for items with Donors Choose,  a website that allows teachers to request certain items, write up a proposal, and then donors get to choose which projects they want to fund. With Donors Choose, I’ve been able to get LEGOs for center time, a huge cozy rug for reading time, a bunch of jump ropes and soccer gear to make PE more legit. It’s such a great program that really helps teachers bring in new supplies to the classroom without spending so much of their own money.

3. Playing Soccer With Students


I’ve never been athletic. So my skill level at soccer is about the same as my 2nd grade students, excluding the ones who are in some type of soccer league outside of school. Those students are way better than me.

My students love it when I play soccer with them and so do I. When I put on a green or blue jersey that team gets super excited. It’s a bonding time where we can play together and build up that teacher-student relationship.

Playing soccer with my students is where a lot of the magic happens.

At times it’s incredibly tough to take on the role of coach because I have zero life experience to draw from so all the coaching knowledge I have comes from sports movies. But it’s magical all the same. At the end of a long day, it’s so refreshing to go outside and have fun. If I were in charge of the education system, there would be so much more PLAY time. For the KIDS. Go figure.

4. Chapter Book Read Alouds

Chapter book

Ok, this is where the other real magic happens. I once was told by a student’s older sister, “My brother hated reading before he came into your class. We were always trying to get him to read at home but he never would. After being in your class, he loves chapter books.”

That was so rewarding to hear because it’s not easy to read chapter books aloud each day to a room full of wiggly kids.

But I’m a firm believer that if someone doesn’t “like reading” he/she just hasn’t found the right book yet. One of my goals as a teacher is to get my students to fall in love with reading.  Old Yeller, the kids from Wayside School, and Winn-Dixie are just a few of the characters that help me accomplish that goal.

5. Math Challenge Problems

In second grade, students are supposed to be able to add problems such as 345 + 459. Once my students understand the basics around that, I love giving them challenge problems. I change my voice to sound like a guy from a boxing match, “ARE YOU READY FOR A CHALLENGE???” And I slowly write 347913074 + 392412798 on the board, sometimes pausing before adding yet another digit!  Their jaws drop as I write the problem on the board, but as soon as I encourage them, “You know how to add. You can do this. Add it up!” they get going — and when they get it right, man does my classroom get LOUD. They want more, they soon will demand more, and I will increase the rigor as high as they will allow.

It’s one of my tricks so when they see a problem like 562 +432, they have this new confidence. And 6+7, no sweat!


Yes. Teaching has its awesome moments for sure. And while I do miss some parts about being in the classroom, this mama is exactly where she wants and needs to be. It was just  fun to remember some of my pre-baby daily occurrences.

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When Love Songs Go Christian

My mind is dizzy with what to write about labor, birth, postpartum, and all things newborn, but it all is mixed up in my head right now so instead I will tame this itch to write with a thought I frequently have while listening to music.

So many of my thoughts start with “Before I became a Christian” I should have an acronym for it. BIBAC. Just kidding. Since I teach public elementary school I am overloaded with acronyms. At each teacher meeting we are presented with new ones. ELD, RTI, PLC, TPA, ELL, and so many more that are not as strong in my mind since I’m still on maternity leave and cannot even recall most of my students’ names. I only taught three weeks this year.

So, BIBAC – my favorite songs were country songs. I was particularly obsessed with songs about infidelity. Give me a good country song about cheating and I would repeat that bad boy nonstop. In my old car, the skip-back button’s ink had rubbed off because of how often I would play it again, play it again, play it again. My obsession with songs about cheating slowed way down once Dillon and I got serious. Cheating songs became super unappealing and listening to many of them now will get me talking to the radio. You do have self control and shame on you, honey. You need to go to church. Get out of the bar. Go meet Jesus instead of going back into his/her bed.  

I am still a country fan if the right song comes along, Outskirts of Heaven anyone?!, but when I’m driving my radio is almost always tuned in with K-Love. Especially if I’m getting on a freeway. Lord, give me strength.

Listening to worship songs daily has caused me to have an interesting transformation when I listen to other songs. Particularly love songs. I’ve noticed how many love songs turn into worship songs. For example, It’s Your Love by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill.

This song no longer makes me think of the love between Dillon and me, but the love between God and me. I don’t know the song word for word, so I’m sure there must be some lines that are more towards husbandly love, but when I sing along with…

It’s your love. It just does something to me. It sends a shock right through me. I can’t get enough. And if you wonder, about the spell I’m under, it’s your love. 

… my mind immediately pictures the love that saved my life. The love that fuels me. The love that forever changed me.

Is that not a great worship song all of a sudden? It’s your love becomes it‘s Your love. The capital changes it all.



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A Baby Boy


Declan Ray Mowdy

Born October 8, 2016 at 12:29 A.M.
Weighing 7 lbs 8 oz
Measuring 20.75 inches

Declan is pronounced deck-lin. It’s an Irish name meaning full of goodness and man of prayer.
Many miracles have taken place at St. Declan’s stone in Ireland.

                              Ray is the traditional middle name of Mowdy men. Just like Daddy Dillon Ray.

Baby Boy Declan is more than I could have every dreamed up. We can’t get enough.


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Peace Stealers

With a brand new baby about to join our family, I want to be intentional to make our home a peaceful one. I really don’t know what to expect with a newborn. I’ve read a lot of advice from other blogs and listened to a lot of mom stories, but having a baby seems like one of those experiences you have to have for yourself. Every baby is different and will bring a different dynamic to each family. Welcoming a new member to the family will require an adjustment period. Even when we got a puppy there was an adjustment. I don’t expect everything to be perfect and I don’t want to set our family up for that kind of high expectation. However, what I do want is to be proactive about keeping a peaceful home.

I want our home to be a place where my husband can’t wait to come back to after a long day at work. I don’t want him to dread coming home or prefer to stay at work. I want our home to be a place where people feel welcomed, comfortable, and loved. I was watching a Joyce Meyer sermon on Youtube the other morning and she was teaching on peace. She was teaching how Jesus left his peace with us.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

So why can it be so difficult to find or maintain peace in our lives? Or how can one thing come along and suddenly shake away the peace we had? Her advice to have a more consistently peace filled life was to first make a list of the peace stealers in your life. Then take actionable steps to deal with them.

I asked my husband to also make a list of what his peace stealers were. I knew I was reaching with that request because Dillon is not a list maker and does not get any kind of thrill out of a good list the way I do. In fact, we only came up with 5 for him. And I thought of most of them. Where as for me, I easily came up with about 20 and decided to narrow it down.

10 of My Peace Stealers – In No Particular Order

  1. Dirty Dishes

    Especially if the dishes are older than one day. Dishes do not take that long to wash. If more than 30 minutes of TV was watched and there are two day or three day or four day (yikes!) old dishes in the kitchen, then time was not the problem, laziness was the problem.

  2. Being Late To Church or Skipping Altogether

    I won’t let myself be late to work, so I hate when I allow myself to be late to church. It’s not okay to be late. I get annoyed when people come in late during worship and I have to move to accommodate them. If I’m in the middle of a great worship song, with my eyes closed, and my hand raised, the last thing I want is a tap on the shoulder breaking me away from that moment and asking if I could move so they could squeeze by. I’m glad they made it to church, but worship is as equally as important to me as the sermon. I definitely lose my peace when we are late to church.

    Skipping church altogether also steals my peace for nearly all of Sunday. The enemy never wants us to make it to church and it can feel so easy to sleep in and make up excuses of why not to go. But I need to go. It fuels me in a way no other thing can. I love going to church.

  3. Too Much Screen Time

    Whether it be TV, computer, or phone. Or all three at once. (yikes again)

  4. Listening To A Complainer (Myself Included)

    Complaining is a huge peace stealer for me. I’m not talking about the occasional vent/advice session, but more the constant complaining that leads to no solution. I feel so drained after listening to someone complain or if I’m the one doing the complaining. I’ve gotten pretty good at telling myself to be quiet.

  5. Gossiping/Negative Talk About Others

    Even if it’s true, I shouldn’t repeat it and I always regret it immediately. I can feel myself turning so ugly on the inside.

  6. Getting Overloaded With Advice

    I am really learning how to put my faith in God and trust that he is with me each step of the way. It completely steals my peace when advice starts coming my way because it usually does not match up with my new motto of, I’m going to trust God to get me through each step of the way. I don’t need to know all twenty steps anymore. I can’t prepare for everything, nor do I want to.

  7. Not Being Firm In My Beliefs

    This goes back to caring too much what other people think. I’m much better at this than I was before, but I still need to work on not letting others influence my actions.

  8. Ignoring An Assignment From God

    When I know that I know that I know God told me to do something, say something, stop something, etc… but I keep putting it off I have minimum amounts of peace. Whatever the assignment may be, whether it’s as simple as stop watching that show or as big as start a blog, until I obey, I don’t have as much peace as I know is available.

  9. Pulling

    Most likely a few other things on my peace stealers list have come into play for this to become an issue.

  10. A Cluttered “Sorry About The Mess” Home

    When people come into our home, I lose so much peace if the first thing out our mouths is, “Sorry about the mess.” I want a home that is constantly ready to take in guests and I want my husband to know he can always bring people into our home without fear of what it looks like that day.

5 of My Husband’s Peace Stealers – In No Particular Order

  1. Spending Too Much Time Inside

    My husband does not do well if he has been stuck inside for too long. He needs to get out and go do something.

  2. Not Spending Time With Friends/Family

    He’s an extrovert, so he needs people to get refueled. I try to remember this and be encouraging when he goes out with friends. The husband I get back is charged up and more full of life.

  3. Toilet Paper Backwards

    Apparently I put the toilet paper on the wrong way. I didn’t realize there was a right way. Either way, it rolls and gets the job done, but I can try and figure out which way he prefers.

  4. Letting Bills Go Two Months

    I’m in charge of some bills and will occasionally let them go for two months if there’s not a late fee. A bad habit that is easy to fix.

  5. No Free Day

    Dillon’s alarm wakes up him Monday – Friday around 4:45 A.M. He really likes to have at least one day on the weekend where he doesn’t have to live by the clock.

After looking at our peace stealers lists, I’m seeing a lot of potential peace problems with a newborn. Free days and no dirty dishes sound like things of the past for a while. But that’s why the lists exists. We can recognize what each other may need to feel a little bit more at peace during this transition for our family. I know that if I see my husband losing it, he may just need to go out somewhere and recharge. If he sees me losing it, and notices the kitchen exploded, he can attack the dishes until we have a clean, workable kitchen again.

With that being said, having a newborn is going to completely redefine our lives. One of my goals as a new mother will be to not miss out on the moments because I too distracted by the other stuff.  I want to be a Mary not a Martha. So even if all my peace stealers come at me at once and the kitchen is messy, we skipped church, the floor is hardly walkable with all the clutter everywhere, and people come by and have no place to sit, I still have access to peace Jesus left with us. It’s up to me whether or not I choose to embrace peace in the midst of chaos. I can focus on what is good instead of letting my peace stealers run my life.

What are some of the peace stealers in your life? Are there things you can do to change them?


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Our DIY Maternity Photoshoot

I would have loved to have professional pictures of this special time in our marriage. But, I have not done enough with our engagement/wedding photos and I could not justify spending money on more professional photos.

Instead, I decided our backyard would be great. I love using our fence as a backdrop for photos. I brought out some fall decorations, our selfie stick, and this was the result. My husband is cleverer than I am, and realized we can take the remote off the selfie stick. So if you look closely, or sometimes it’s pretty obvious, either him or I have the remote in our hand taking the photos. Here are some we captured. Enjoy!


Maternity Photo -Ants

In this photo I’m being attacked by red ants and Dillon is trying to get Mattie girl to jump up for the photo. Action shot.

pumpkin belly

I was pretty terribly at hiding the remote. Oops!

Maternity Photo all 3

Introducing Mattie to the Baby Bump. She really hates being carried and gets all awkward.

Maternity Photo Mattie Jump

“It’s a ball! Oh wait, it’s just a pumpkin.”

(Behind the scenes tidbit – her tennis ball is on the fence too, but she’s covering it up in this photo. Once we saw how high she was getting we decided to stop immediately before Baby Girl learned to jump the fence…)

It’s crazy to think about how our next photo session will have Baby Mowdy in it. Actually most photos from here on out will probably have Baby Mowdy in them. Now that I’m home all day, I send Dillon at least one picture of Mattie a day. I’m sure he’s prepared for me to be blowing-up his phone with even more photos.

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Why I Love My “Haunted” Due Date

Pumpkin Due Date

“When was the first day of your last period?” she asked me.

“December 31st.”   It was easy to remember because Dillon, Mattie, and I were camping for New Years. It’s always fun getting your period on vacation at a campsite.

“Ok, that would mean your baby’s due date is,” she paused for a moment as she typed in the information to the nifty due-date calculator, “October 6th.” 

“October 6th?” I asked for clarification.

“Yup,” she smiled. “It’ll be here before you know it.”

October 6th. October 6th. October 6th. Don’t panic, Katie. October 6th?

I glanced over at Dillon for a minute as if to say with my facial expression, that’s a pretty slim chance! Is this okay? But he didn’t seem phased by the date October 6th like I was. I had a million thoughts going through my mind. Is that a bad thing? A good thing? What does that mean? Should I get upset? Am I upset? October 6th has been a date on the calendar that brings me back to one of the most difficult seasons in my life. It’s one of those dates so full of pain that no matter how many years go by you can still remember so clearly how the events played out. I can very clearly remember all the terrible images and hear the terrible sounds that happened one year on October 6th because October 6th is the day my mother ended her life.

My baby’s due date is my mom’s death date.

Definitely not the most devastating news to find out at the doctor’s office, but I had to decide for me personally if I was going to let this molehill become a mountain. I am happy to say I fairly quickly decided no. It initially shook me, but I was not going to let this become a thing.

And then the more I thought about it, the more excited I got about it. If I wasn’t so awkward at it, I would have winked at God because here’s what I realized.

God can and does give new life to all things.  Even a date on the calendar. Yes, many years ago on October 6th, my family came home and our lives changed forever. October 6, 1997 instantly changed my nine-year old self. It flooded me with new fears that I hadn’t known before. It was not a good day in my life.

But that is in the past. October 6th doesn’t forever have to be something that affects me so negatively. God took that date and now October 6th has become one of the most happily anticipated dates of my life. Our Baby may be arriving October 6th! That’s a pretty miraculous make-over to the previously death stained October 6th.

Baby Mowdy’s expected arrival is bringing new life where death once was.  Thank God. 

Another reason I love our haunted due date is because it let me take a stand against the enemy. I could have chosen to dwell in the sadness and past. I heard the enemy try to persuade me to take a stroll down ol’ self-pity lane. The enemy tried to get me to let my mind wonder and focus on the hurt instead of the happy. Well, nice try, devil, but I will not let this upset me or this pregnancy. I’ve come too far on my walk with God to let this bring me down.

I intend to enjoy this baby and pregnancy despite my past. I am so happy about our little October 6th pumpkin.

I couldn’t think of a better due date for this baby.



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Pregnancy Update

Still on maternity leave and still loving it. Here’s an update on to-do list. 

  • Prewash All of Baby’s Clothes, Blankets, and Towels   Everything is washed, hung up or folded, and ready to go. We really don’t have many clothes since we don’t know if Baby is a he or she.

  • Pack a Hospital Bag      I read a lot of Pinterest lists on what you actually need to bring to the hospital.  
  • Pack a Labor/Birth Food Bag  –  I have a bag in the refrigerator  and a bag in the pantry. Lots of snacks just incase the hospital doesn’t have great options. 
  • Decorate The Nursery, Slowly And Without Pressure  – Ummm, nothing has been added. Poor Baby won’t have a cute nursery like the other babies. That’s okay. 
  • Eat Dates  – Yes and no. They are super super sweet and I can only handle so many a day. 
  • Get truck washed and vacuumed   I took it to a car wash place and they found Dillon’s wedding ring that has been missing for a few months. I cleaned out the truck before I took it, so they are pretty thorough. He had already bought a replacement ring though. His rings are about $15 from Amazon.
  • Install carseat   Dillon did it.
  • Build bassinet     Dillon did it.
  • Build crib     Dillon did it.

build that crib

  • Rest whenever I feel like it  Oh, yes! I take a nap after lunch almost every day.
  • Sew boppy pillow covers I didn’t really care for any of the covers that are available in stores. They have a really limited selection. Etsy sells some really cute ones, but because they are handmade they are quite pricy. I panicked for a minute on what I would do, but then I remembered I know how to sew and have a ton of fabric waiting to be used up. My cover is not quite as tight as a store bought cover would be and I didn’t realize I cut the fabric so it would be upside down on the pillow when I’m nursing, but it’s good enough for Baby and me. I am super anxious to visit a fabric store and make some more. boppy pillow
  • Organize and clean out nursery   It’s not cute but it’s not cluttered. 😉 
  • Stock up the changing table 
  • Add fall decorations to the house   Yup. I had a very fun trip to Michaels.


  • Put up photos   – Sigh, not yet. I have hardly any photos of us throughout the house. I spent a good amount of money on our engagement/wedding photos and I need to display at least one.
  • Write out encouraging scriptures to read while in labor   I have them on post-its.
  • Watch all 10 days of Code Orange Revival    – So good. If you didn’t watch it, you can look them up on youtube or the Elevation Church app.
  •  Read –  I read every night before bed because I can’t fall asleep until about midnight or later (my afternoon naps) and Dillon needs to be in bed by 10 at the latest because he gets up so early for work.
  • Keep the house clean  – Super happy to say my house has been presentable all week long. Come on over surprise visitors because my kitchen is sparkly, the pillows are positioned, and all dog hair has been vacuumed up.
  • Enjoy/spoil Dillon  –  I can’t get enough of him right now. I hope and pray that I won’t turn on him during labor. I hope and pray that we will be kind to each other when the late nights are tough and the baby cries are loud.
    pumpkin belly

A friend of mine sent me a super cute picture like this one except I didn’t make the effort to get a real pumpkin from the store so I had Dillon use the fake small one I got from Michaels. Close enough! 

  • Trust God – Each and every day. Lead me Lord, keep me in your will.

Most everything that should be done before Baby arrives has been done. I am in no huge hurry yet for Baby to pop out. Baby is old enough now that anytime would be safe. We are as ready as we can be. Each week I get a little bit slower and the activities I used to do with ease are noticeably more challenging, but I have not reached the point where being pregnant is so uncomfortable I cannot stand another day.

At 39 weeks pregnant, I’m not really anxious to get a lot of errands done. Driving has become annoying for me because sitting in the driver’s seat makes it feel like Baby is crawling up my ribs, so I am not planning on doing very much. Instead, I am focusing on the following things until Baby joins the Mowdy family.

  • Eat to have strength for when labor comes
  • Rest to have strength for when labor comes
  • Walk to have strength for when labor comes 
  • Pray to have strength and wisdom and peace for when labor comes
  • Keep the house clean so I’m not upset or distracted when labor comes
  • Laugh and enjoy the ups and downs of being pregnant 
  • Savor these last few days as just husband and wife 

Basically my mind is focused on labor.


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Update On Maternity Leave To Do List

37 weeks

I tackled my to-do list the best this nine months pregnant woman could. My pregnancy, praise God, has been very smooth but this extra 27 pounds makes it a little more difficult to get around at my normal pace. I have minor complaints but nothing that is extreme or can’t be fixed with some couch time and Netflix.  The hardest thing I am facing right now is shopping at large stores. Yesterday at the grocery store I only spent $18 because I was so ready to leave.

So while I haven’t quite finished everything I would like to get done before baby arrives, I am feeling more confident by the progress I did make.

  • Buy All The Boring Baby Stuff
  • Finish Maternity Leave/Disability Paperwork 
  • Buy All the Gear I’ll Need for My Body’s Recovery After Birth 
  • Pre-Register At The Hospital
  • Return/Exchange/Donate Extra Baby Supplies 
  • Order a Breast Pump  
  • Possibly Take Maternity Photos – If So, Find An Outfit 
  • Keep the House Clean 
  • Finalize Baby Name Choices 
  • Prewash All of Baby’s Clothes, Blankets, and Towels
  • Pack a Hospital Bag  
  • Pack a Labor/Birth Food Bag 
  • Decorate The Nursery, Slowly And Without Pressure 
  • Eat Dates 

Adding to my to-do list this week —

  • Get truck washed and vacuumed 
  • Install carseat 
  • Build bassinet  
  • Build crib 
  • Rest whenever I feel like it 
  • Sew boppy pillow covers 
  • Organize and clean out nursery 
  • Stock up the changing table 
  • Add fall decorations to the house
  • Put up photos 
  • Write out encouraging scriptures to read while in labor 
  • Watch all 10 days of Code Orange Revival  
  • Continue to read
  • Continue to keep the house clean 
  • Continue to enjoy/spoil Dillon
  • Continue to trust God

A few of my to-dos are things I need Dillon’s help with or are just things that would be nice to get done if I have the energy. My main priorities are to pray for guidance, listen to what my body needs, love my husband, and keep my house clean for when baby comes home.

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BBQ and Baby Talk

BBQ & Baby Talk

I knew I did not want a typical baby shower at our house. I am not super great at being the center of attention. I start to sweat, get all hot, and my face turns red. In fact, before our BBQ began I made sure to pray and ask God to help me relax, remember the reason people are coming, and just enjoy the day.

Also, opening gifts in front of people makes me uncomfortable and I think I overdue my gratitude expressions to make sure the people know how much I appreciate the gifts. The thought of Dillon helping me open gifts sounded great! So I knew I wanted a co-ed shower for sure.

While I’m not a huge fan of being the center of attention in a large group of people, what I do love is having people over (for a set amount of time…#introvert), having people taste how great of a chef my husband is, and having one-on-one conversations with family members and friends. I also love showing off my big pregnant belly. Gaining weight may be my favorite thing so far about pregnancy. I keep telling Dillon, “I ain’t loosing the baby weight!” Although knowing my body, I imagine my extra weight will melt right off the day the baby is born.

BBQ Baby Showers are very popular right now, so I decided that it was the route I would like to take in celebrating sweet Baby Mowdy. Because it’s not about the gifts or the food or the decorations. God gifted my husband and I with a sweet baby and that little miracle should be celebrated among family and friends.

Card making

I love making invitations by hand with scrapbooking supplies. Luckily, I over bought scrapbooking supplies a few years ago and the only purchase I had to make for the invitations were the envelopes and blank cards. I made our wedding invitations and Christmas cards by hand, as well. I always look on Shutterfly and all those websites, but I can’t ever find one that feels right. What feels right is a huge scrapbooking paper mess spread out all over the living room.


I’m pretty fast and efficient when it comes to paper crafts, so it really isn’t that big of a undertaking. It also makes me feel productive while watching an episode of The Office on Netflix for the 4th time.

I always try to include a few things with each card I send out. I always stamp the back of the invitation with a Made With Love stamp I got off of Etsy. I also always wrap the envelope with washi tape. Where was washi tape when I was a kid? I would have washi taped EVERYTHING.

Since we weren’t going to play the typical baby shower games, but I still wanted our guests to have something to interact with, I set up three stations.

Guess Baby Mowdy’s Birthday


Most people participated in this one. Boy is definitely the popular vote and one week early is the popular date. This Mama still needs to write her guess down.

Advice For Mama and Daddy


Only 6 people did this. I wasted a lot of ink and washi tape… Oh well, it was super fun reading the ones that did fill it out.

Late Night Diapers


People didn’t really get into this one either. Oh well, but once again super fun to read the ones who did participate.

My step mother took a ton of photos on her camera, but I don’t have any of those yet. I only took one bathroom selfie after everyone had gone home.  Ignore the toilet… And I’m 34 weeks pregnant in this photo. 


Overall, our BBQ and Baby Talk was a great success. Dillon and I were beyond grateful for everyone who came and showered Baby will love.

Also, a  special shout out also to my Bible study group and co-workers, who each through me a baby shower also. Three parties to celebrate Baby was way more than this mama expected. I feel so loved and supported.



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Well, Hello There, Maternity Leave

I am now 36 weeks pregnant and officially on maternity leave! Can I get a hallelujah, can I get an amen?  🙂 

35 Weeks Pregnant

A huge weight has been lifted. If I am unable to get comfortable or sleep at all during the night, I have peace of mind that I can rest later instead of panicking about how I’ll make it through another work day. I can eat when I need to, pee when I need to, and lay down when I need to. I can also go barefoot which helps a lot with keeping any swelling down. I am so thankful for this maternity leave.

Baby Mowdy will be arriving in about 4 weeks (give or take) and even though this mama has had all summer to prep, we recently had our BBQ and Baby Showers, so now there’s a lot of unpacking and building to do. If baby arrives early we could find ways to manage, but I’m hoping Baby keeps baking so I can get things a little more in order.

Maternity Leave To Do List:

  • Buy All The Boring Baby Stuff –  We need to get a crib mattress, a bassinet for the bedroom, sheets, mattress pads, etc.
  • Finish Maternity Leave/Disability Paperwork 
  • Buy All the Gear I’ll Need for My Body’s Recovery After Birth – Women are tough.
  • Pre-Register At The Hospital
  • Return/Exchange/Donate Extra Baby Supplies 
  • Pack a Hospital Bag 
  • Decorate The Nursery, Slowly And Without Pressure  – We do not have a cute nursery yet. I did one really adorable thing in the nursery and that is what I focus on if I start to panic about not having a photo worthy nursery. Baby steps are how this nursery will be designed. I’m giving myself a lot of grace here because we are trying to save as much money as possible knowing that my paychecks will be sliced pretty thin. Also, my husband and I are both naturally savers over spenders. We will randomly make a large purchase, but both have a difficult time spending money on unnecessary items.  Dillon also gets a little sick to his stomach when our bank account goes below a certain number, and I don’t want him stressing over money during this exciting new season in our life. There are many ways to decorate a nursery on a budget, so I will be spending some time on Pinterest these next couple weeks before this basketball baby arrives.
    BabyBookshelfThis is my one thing. A single bookshelf with books mostly free from Scholastic or friends. Eventually I’d like the whole wall decorated.
  • Prewash All of Baby’s Clothes, Blankets, and Towels 
  • Order a Breast Pump  
  • Pack a Labor/Birth Food Bag I don’t know how I will feel about eating during labor, but incase I need some fuel to keep me going I want to make sure that food is waiting patiently in the house and not at the grocery store.
  • Don’t Eat The Food in the Labor/Birth Food Bag 
  • Possibly Take Maternity Photos – If So, Find An Outfit 
  • Keep the House Clean My housekeeping skills leave much to be desired. I have a pretty bad clutter reputation to overcome, and I was recently hated on about how messy my house was by some relatives. This hurt pretty badly for two reasons. One, there is truth to it. And two, because I have been really trying to keep a cleaner house, but sometimes I’m just not sure where the mess comes from. More on that in a later post…
  • Spend As Much Time Enjoying/Spoiling My Husband As Possible  –  I have no idea how a baby will change our marriage. I’m imagining the level of joy and love will sky-rocket. But I’m also imagining us facing some difficult times as we get adjusted to our new roles as Mama and Daddy. I want to pregame for these difficult times with as much love now as possible.  Ooo, Imma blame the messy house on that.
  • Finalize Baby Name Choices – Since we are waiting to find out the sex, we need one for each. Honestly, we already have them and I love them both equally, but this gives me something huge to mark off my to-do list.
  • Read 
  • Eat Dates – I’ve read about them helping with labor and delivery.
  • Remember I’m Not in Charge, God Is In Charge
    Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.  – Philippians 4:6-7.  


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