Whole Parenting Family

Seven Quick Takes with Jen & the Gang

— 1 —

Jen’s lovely book (Something Other Than God) arrives in my mailbox TODAY! Yes, I am excited to read it because yes, I find an atheist’s conversion to Catholicism fascinating. And I love reading her blog, so there you have it. It will keep me great company in the last week of pregnancy. And watching her video preview, watching 33 authors and writers do little bits (some of whom I know) was really touching. Call it pregnancy, but I got misty eyed.

Check it for yourselves here on youtube.

— 2 —

me & boyts


This interminable pregnancy waxes on at 39 weeks yesterday. But you know what? I’m glad he’s still in there, getting all the fat, brain development, and lung work babies need at the end. Would I rather not carry around a watermelon? Would I like to just get it all over with and meet him already? Would I rather not wonder every night before I finally fall asleep if this is the night my water breaks? Would I rather AA know when he’s coming so he can plan and cope with all the craziness of work? Yes, yes, yes, blah blah.

But as is my plan with this birth, I’m focused on being present in love, not enduring. That means being present to this full term pregnancy. Not anticipating his arrival (though I SWORE he was coming early by the feel of things!), not bemoaning he’s not here yet. I’m confident he’ll come when he should, and when he’s ready. In his own time.

— 3 —

The month of May is lined with fabulous guest & sponsored posts. I’m lucky to have such awesomeness to share with you. We kicked it off early in April with special insights from Jamie from Behave Your Best with how not to talk your kid to death, continued with an essential oil giveaway & interview with my girlfriend Betsy, oh, yes, and the highlight of Enlightened Mama’s MamaWell nights, along with yesterday’s super popular work/life balance post from a first-time mama girlfriend.

Keep your eyes out for gluten free recipes, a brand spanking new sponsor *whom I know you’ll love,* introduction to a girlfriend’s doula biz, a promotion of Call Her Happy’s beautiful Etsy shop! and much, much more. With someday a post that the BabyLoves has arrived. Someday.

— 4 —

After a friend from our parish moms’ group suffered the loss of the little one she was carrying, it was our first chance to set up our meal plan schema for someone who’d suffered a loss instead of welcoming a new life. When my girlfriend and I first started the group over a year ago, we wanted to be able to provide community meals & support for joy of life and sorrow of death. I’m so sad for my friend’s loss, but glad there was something tangible we could all do to rally around her family.

If you don’t have a community to support you with food & prayers when you’re experiencing joys & sorrows, how do you process? Reach out if you’re in the Twin Cities as there are so many wonderful moms’ groups at the childbirth ed centers, and at local places of worship & reflection, too!

— 5 —

whole parenting goods

Mother’s Day coupon for ye ole etsy shop! MAMA2014 for 30% off, because I love you. And you love someone. And they might need little girl skirts, blankets, bibs, or just a gift card to my shoppe!

— 6 —


If you don’t know about Scythian the band, your life is incomplete. Help them build their newest album, Jump at the Sun. Oh, boy, we leapt for joy when we got the early download! The kids literally just bounce to it and AA and I slow dance. The guys are good family friends and we love them dearly. If you are missing their children’s album, Cake for Dinner, your children’s lives are incomplete.

Watch for it coming soon to iTunes! Hear a preview at MerleFest.

One of the tracks, a cover 0f the Gambler, made me misty eyed *yes, pregnant here* because it’s one my siblings and I LOVE to belt out with Johnny Cash’s cover in the car when it’s just all of us–started this weird tradition years before marriage & babies. Scythian’s cover is way better, of course.

— 7 —

I’m compiling my bloglovin’ reads onto the right side column of the homepage. So many great blogs out there–this is just my start. Tell me if you read something that’s not there!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


  1. Olivia on May 2, 2014 at 5:52 pm

    1. LOVE Scythian
    2. LOVE SOTG already and am very impatiently waiting for my mailman to get here because it should arrive today.
    3. LOVE how beautiful you look! You are almost there. And the part about being present in love instead of enduring? Yeah, I’m going to be contemplating that for a while.
    4. During Mass this afternoon you and Baby Loves came to mind, so I offered my Mass for you two. Can’t wait to see him!

    • Halyna on May 2, 2014 at 10:43 pm

      Prayers for you and the little one!

      • Natural Mama Nell on May 3, 2014 at 12:01 pm

        Thank you, sweet sister!

    • Natural Mama Nell on May 3, 2014 at 12:00 pm

      Is there anything more uplifting than Scythian?? And I’m half way through Jen’s book already!

      Thank you so much for your prayers. We need them!

  2. Kate @ The Rhodes Log on May 3, 2014 at 11:35 am

    I’m here randomly from Conversion Diary and I’m clicking around madly trying to figure out how we can overlap in our blog community so much, and yet I’ve never been here?!? What a beautiful space! I’m so glad I found you, and I’m so excited to click around!

    • Kate @ The Rhodes Log on May 3, 2014 at 11:36 am

      P.S. And good luck and prayers for the last few weeks of your pregnancy!

      • Natural Mama Nell on May 3, 2014 at 12:01 pm


    • Natural Mama Nell on May 3, 2014 at 12:01 pm

      Kate–such a SMALL world! Okay, now we are connected. Let me sign up for your blog real quick like!