Have you and your husband considered embryo adoption? My friend’s 3 year old is from embryo adoption, and I think it’s one of the greatest testimonies that life begin at conception. http://www.bethany.org/main/embryo-services
When we began discussing a second child, we looked at all our options, and we did briefly discuss embryo adoption.
I agree with you that embryo adoption is a beautiful testimony that life truly begins at conception! I know several of my readers have children via embryo adoption. One reader’s daughter was born a whole decade after she was conceived.
At the same time, (and this is just my opinion) I also feel like some RE’s are too eager to “make babies” that end up frozen forever. This is why a lot of people set a limit to the number of eggs they will give the chance to be fertilized – because they do not want to end up with frozen embryos. If you plan to give all those embryos a chance at life, then that is great. But having frozen embryos and not desiring to have anymore children is a dilemma I never wanted to find myself in!
For Dave and me, we just felt that God was calling us to adopt a baby who is already going to for sure be born and whose mother is in a crisis situation and needs a couple to step up and parent their child, taking their baby on as their own flesh and blood.
This does not mean I do not agree with embryo adoption. I can think of two readers who have children via embryo adoption and both of their stories are just beautiful. You cannot put God in a box. If you hear their stories, it is very clear that God lead them to embryo adoption, which brought them their precious children.
Did you use pacifiers with either of your girls? Why or why not? If you did, when and how did you get them to stop taking them (or, if they are still using them, what’s your plan for getting them to stop)?
Both of my girls used a pacifier. Some newborns have a strong need to suck and methadone babies typically have a very strong sucking reflex!
My strategy for pacifier use was to use it strategically. Just to calm a frantic baby down, or just to help a baby be soothed to sleep, or to help with screaming in the car seat, or to hold off an early morning feeding. I never wanted to give my babies a pacifier just because. I never wanted my babies to suck on a paci for no reason other than to just suck on something!
This worked beautifully for my babies and me! I never had a baby hooked on a paci to the point we had to cut off the tip or do something drastic to get them off it once they started talking.
I used the hospital brand paci with both girls and my pedi told me those are the best kind because they are made for the newborn mouth and harder to suck and keep in the mouth without them falling out, making them harder to suck the older baby gets.
Little Bug would sometimes use her paci when going to sleep at night, but once it fell out she never cried for it to be put back in her mouth (or else we would have nipped that in the bud eventually)! I can remember a phase of giving her the paci for car rides. It was the only way to have some peace as we drove! I would also use it a lot to keep her quiet in church before I started putting her in the nursery. Around 6-7 months, Little Bug lost interest in the paci, she was a happy car rider and she didn’t need the paci to go to sleep at night anymore and because the reasons I had used the paci with her were no longer needed, she no longer “needed” her paci.
Sweet Pea did have to have her paci to fall asleep basically from birth to about eight months. Then I guess you could say I lucked out on her because she basically gave up the paci on her own and started sucking her thumb instead. When we stopped swaddling her at 8 months, she started sucking her thumb to get to sleep and that was the end of the paci for her.
Best advice I have on paci use is to use it for specific reasons. If your baby is happily playing on the floor with a toy, don’t pop a paci in their mouth just because babies use pacifiers! You are setting up your baby to get hooked on it. There are specific uses for a pacifier (I listed some above). Stick to those uses and a baby is less likely to get hooked on the paci.
I see that you are going to homeschool your girls. I wonder what your opinion on homeschooling only children is? Also, do you have any recommendations for year 1 curriculum or can you recommend any blogs/websites that can give advice in this area?
Yes, I am going to homeschool my girls!! It is something I have looked forward to for years and I can hardly believe Little Bug is nearly at school-age!
I firmly believe that homeschool is a very positive education option for any child, whether they are one of many children or an only-child. Socialization is always a huge concern when homeschool is brought up and I assume that is why you asked about my opinion about the only child being homeschooled.
I am not worried one bit about my girls being “socialized”. School is not the only place a child learns social skills! They can learn them wherever they go with me throughout the day: the store, the park, Daddy’s office, Grandparent’s houses, play dates, the library, etc. In fact, I find it humorous that people think kids need to go to school to be socialized! Where else in society do we throw a bunch of people the exact same age for 7 hours of day? We don’t! When my girls get their first job, they will deal with people who are their same age all the way to decades older than them! School is the only place we group people by age.
There are so many homeschool groups that you can join these days. These groups are made of other homeschool families and they get together for field trips, play dates and schooling. You all know my Little Bug is a Social Butterfly and I am not even worried about her feeling “secluded” because I know we will join a group and have plenty of opportunities for her to make friends and be social as she loves to be.
I could (and one day probably will) write an entire post on homeschool. My reasons for choosing homeschool as the way our girls will be educated are numerous but the two basic reasons right now are: 1) Our personal convictions about parenting and how we believe God desires for us (as in Dave and me) to raise our children and 2) because the public schools here are (for the most part, I know there are some good schools and teachers out there around here – some of my best friends are those teachers ) horrible. There are many more layers as to why we desire to homeschool our children. I will get into those on the homeschool post.
I have asked Rebecca to write a guest post on my blog to answer your question about curriculum and good homeschool websites/blogs. She is a year ahead of me in homeschooling as she started homeschooling her son, Micah, this year! (He is technically in PK4, but they are already working on some Kindergarten and 1st grade curriculum.) Rebecca spent a lot of time this past summer researching curriculum and homeschooling!
I will post her guest post in the future. (Probably after Thanksgiving)