Hello there Oohmoonies!
It has been sooooo long, hasn’t it? How I have missed you! I don’t think there is a day that goes by that I don’t think of this community in one way or another. When I big Oohmoon ‘farewell’ and said that this is one of those happenings in life that will mark you forever, I not only meant it, but it is genuinely really true. I was just thinking last night about how it has changed me. How grateful I am for having worked so rigorously hard for 2+ solid years. The habits I formed in those years are still stuck on me and I have no intention to ever shake them!
For instance, I am a morning person now (are you yet SICK of me talking about this!? Seriously.). I don’t mean this in the way that I wake up and skip out of bed whistling, with a smile on my face, and singing the “Happy Morning” song. I mean that I came to VALUE morning quiet hours. No matter how hard it is to wake up! I loath sleeping in now. Each time I stay up too late and therefore sleep in too late, my day is not nearly the same quality as if I hadn’t. Now that I’m not working on an illustration in the morning, I do 2 things. I made a commitment several months ago to seek the Lord first thing in the morning. So I spend time reading my Bible and praying as the first activity of my day. This, by far, alters my day ahead like nothing else. How I cherish this time. Second, once I finish reading/praying, most the time now I have homework to complete. I am still taking graduate classes, and so morning and kiddo-nap times are high-productivity times for me. I LURV my homework. Nothing has made my heart sing the way these classes, this pursuit, ever has. I still don’t know all that God has in store with this education, but I do firmly know this is where He wants me right now.
I have to break to tell you something. Last month my husband and I attended a design lecture at a local college here. They had a guest designer visiting from NYC—a rare occurrence indeed in our small ND town. We had been to one of his lectures while we were in college and have one of his books. We got a babysitter, went to the lecture, then went out for appetizers following. We left that lecture so completely energized and thrilled. We couldn’t stop talking about design and art for the rest of the night. We MISS being surrounded by a creative community. We love the community God has us in right now, but we remember what it was like to live daily side-by-side other active artists. It’s so inspiring. It challenges you as an artist and a person. As I fell asleep that night, I kept turning over in my mind this question: how can I use my new Bible/theology education AND my art education/career? It’s a question I ask all the time. I suppose only time will tell if the two will ever go hand in hand. It’s true that nothing makes my heart sing like the classes I’m now enrolled in. But it’s also true that I have not forgotten art. Far from it. I still am deeply moved by it and still desire to be an active member of the design/art world.
For now, however, I patiently wait the unveiling of all such things. For now, I do what I know I’m supposed to do now.
I went to a funeral this spring. The woman was in her 90′s when she died. She was a good family friend and I always thought of her as another grandmother. As they were retelling her story, I was struck by how many different lives she seemed to live. She raised 3 children on a farm. At some point they moved to town and she became a school teacher. She retired from teaching at 54 and then went on to volunteer at the local hospital impacting the community for the next 35 years. 35 years! That’s another entire lifetime! There are some days I feel like I’m too old to be taking classes or to be pursing something new… but what ridiculous limits I put on life and on God! I subconsciously think I only have a couple more years to really get something done, and then it’s over after that. HA!
Anyways, back to another thing Oohmoon taught me. This I know for sure: if I can have a baby sleeping through the night so I can get a full night’s sleep, I can accomplish anything! Finnley was about 3 months old when I began Oohmoon. I had gotten him to sleep through the night when he was about 10 weeks old. If I was still waking with him 2 or 3 times a night, I don’t know that Oohmoon would have been physically possible. I RELIED on getting sleep so I could function and be consciously productive each day.
Why was this an important lesson to learn? Well… because I’m going to have another baby this fall!!! SURPRISE!!
We are so excited, but we were surprised too!! Shocked really! We hadn’t made our final decision quite yet on whether we were done having a family, but we were definitely leaning toward the DONE side! Clearly God had other plans for our family. We are now excited and very much at peace with His plan for our family. But I will say that at first, I definitely struggled with the concept. I was feeling like we were getting to start moving toward another stage in life… having older kids, that is. No more diapers (almost). No more baby food. No more complete dependence for every basic life need. In these ways, life was feeling freer and full of possibilities. I was going deeper into my schooling, and now there was TIME to do it, etc. Well, for a few hours, I was quite positive my life was over. And for a few days, I was totally out of it. And for a couple weeks true-depression seemed to be tapping at my windows. God did an amazing thing through the course of this life-changing discovery. His Word (the Bible) spoke TRUTH to my soul. My immediate reaction that life was over now that a new born was re-entering my life, was an absolute lie I was believing. NO, life was just going to be different than I expected. Not OVER! The plans I sensed God had for me were no more thwarted than if I hadn’t become pregnant. Nothing can keep God from accomplishing what He’s set out to accomplish. Getting my nose into my Bible was key and life-giving. Oh man, I love my God. He is for us people! Not against us! He is for me by giving me another baby just as much as He is for me in giving me work that has purpose.
Anyhoo… in settling this truth in my heart, and determining to move forward with faith in my God, I have become VERY excited to add a third little Moon baby to this home. Oh I have loved me my Moon babies!! My man has really been great with it from day 1. He was as shocked as I was, but it never really shook him like it did me. So we are both very excited. So are the boys! We will find out whether Baby is a girl or boy at the end of June. Either way, we don’t care. God loves this child measurelessly already and knows all his/her days. We’ll love whoever God has instore for us.
But that thing I learned about what I can do even while having a baby… well, I think if I had never done the work of Oohmoon while having a baby I would think I would have to quit school now. I would be quite sure I can’t have a baby and go to school at the same time. To be honest, doing homework with a newborn and 2 boys pretty much sounds EASIER than creating one illustration a day for a year with a baby and toddler. So my goal, Lord willing, is to have this baby SLEEPING through the night asap. Only God knows if that is possible. And perhaps I’ll have to take some time off from school. That’s ok too! But, anyways, isn’t getting a child sleeping a good goal no matter what? How did I do this with my other two, you ask? Well, we are HUGE Baby Wise fans. We know it doesn’t work for a lot of people, and a lot of people don’t like it at all. And that is ok. But it has worked and we have LOVED it for our family. It sets us into a wonderful and comfortable routine. And everyone gets sleep. I’m pretty lax on how I “do” the steps of it… but it still has worked out. That and “Dunstan Baby Language” were my favorite “baby secrets”. If you have a newborn or are expecting one, look it up! It was a game changer for us. It changed everything. So fantastic. Again, we’ve learned it doesn’t work for everyone either. Every parent and every baby is different. It’s just what has made sense and clicked with these two crazy minds.
Blah blah… enough about babies. That is my major “news” of the spring. I can’t really think of any other very noteworthy thing to share. I guess I’m tweeting more these days. And I’ll be doing another HappyFamily illustration here in 2 weeks. I look forward to working on it very much. It’s been fun to “catch up”. Would love to hear from any of you that may be left to read these few-and-far-between posts! What are your summer plans? Any trips planned? Anyone moving? Any other activites? How about home remodel plans? Do tell!! We have a trip planned to Omaha next month, then to a lake cabin in MN for a week. My hubs is going to get a few house projects done too… Other than that, it’ll be enjoying the great outdoors, each other, and awaiting Baby Moon #3.
Much love to all of you!! And I send a huge squeeze your way!