Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas!

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 
  Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
  “Glory to God in the highest heaven,    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 
- Luke 2:8-14

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

How to Prevent a Cold

This is a busy time for us in the office because everyone is calling us and coming in sick.  Thus, it is pretty inevitable that I get sick, too.  Now, I've heard people say, "doctors are not supposed to get sick!"  The reality is, doctors probably get sick more often because of the constant exposure.  So if you combine a busy job with frequent exposure to germs with sleep deprived mom of three young kids... definite formula for sickness!


So why do folks get sick so much in the winter time?  Cold weather does not actually cause colds as some may think.  Theory is that cold weather brings folks indoors and being inside near a lot of people is a way for cold viruses to spread.


Here are some practical tips to stay healthy:

  • Wash your hands a lot!  Touching doorknobs, table tops, etc that is infected with cold virus that someone else touch a while ago can transmit it to your hands (viruses can live 2-8 hrs on surfaces)
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth as much as possible
  • Avoid close contact with sick folks
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat healthy
  • Avoid stress if possible
  • Get plenty of sleep
You may think it is basic...  but here is the 101 for handwashing:

When?  

As often as possible!  Especially...
  • Anytime you shake someone's hand who is sick
  • Anytime you pick up tissue or care for sick child
  • When come home from a public place (like school, mall, etc)
  • Definitely before you eat
  • Before putting contacts in your eyes
How?
  • Wet with running water
  • Apply soap
  • Lather for 20 seconds (sing happy birthday twice!) and scrub all surfaces of hand
  • Dry with disposable towel or air dryer for best results
  • Turn off faucet with towel
**Using antibacterial soap may actually cause resistance which will make it harder to kill the bacteria in the future so plain soap and water is best!!

Two out of our three exam rooms in the office do not have a sink and running water.  So we have hand sanitizers instead.  Some say this is better than nothing... but the hand sanitizer needs to be at least 60% alcohol.  However, as this article points out, hand sanitizers should not take the place of hand washing.

So this is probably why I am sick all the time!  Well... that and the fact that I'm so sleep deprived.  Read my previous post here about lack of sleep and increase risk of colds.  Basically if you get less than 7 hours of sleep at night you are at significant risk of catching a cold!  So what am I doing blogging when my 5 month old will probably be waking up in the next couple of hours?  I better get to sleep...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas Traditions

Christmas is around the corner!


We're just starting to make some christmas traditions.  One thing we have been doing is getting a new ornament every year that signifies something special.  Here is what we have so far from the years past:


2002 - "Our First Christmas Together" precious moments ornament
2003 -  Nativity scene ornament from Honduras
2004 -  GI Joe figure
2005 - "Grace" ornament
2006 -  Little home ornament
2007 -  1st Christmas ornament for our daughter
2008 -  Graduation pic in frame ornament
2009 -  1st Christmas ornament for second daughter
2010 -  Philly Marathon ornament 
2011 -  "Blessings" ornament (and ornament for son)


So other things we're doing or hoping to do include...
  • christmas cookies
  • gingerbread houses
  • lots and lots of christmas books and stories
  • lots and lots of caroling
  • christmas eve service
  • matching pjs on christmas morning
So what do you guys do with your families?  Would love to hear...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Words of Encouragement for Weary Mothers

As I had mentioned in previous posts, I love my MOPS group!  Every mom of a preschooler should go to a MOPS or a similar mommy support group.


This past Friday, I was encouraged and humbled listening to a couple share their testimony about how God has called them to be missionaries in the Kensington area in Philly.  Young married couple, not yet with children of their own... but due to circumstances found themselves in the roles of parenthood for 5 kids!  I think the age range was between 5 and 13.  I especially resonated with the young mom's sentiments when she described how some days it is hard not to complain when facing laundry and dishes that never seem to end!  Click here for a link to their blog.


Being a mother certainly has its challenging days.  I'm learning a lot about dying to self... however, I admit I feel defeated many times and wish I was able to do "better".  The strength, patience, and compassion that I wish to portray during those tough moments in the middle of the night when my body and mind is screaming "I want to sleep!" cannot come from myself because my flesh is so weak.  Rather, I need to gather wisdom and encouragement from the Word of God daily and find grace at the foot of the cross.


Here are some of my favorite words of wisdom and encouragement:

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me."  (2 Corinthians 12:9)

 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28) 

But those who hope in the LORD will renew theirstrength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.  (Isaiah 40:31)

The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”  (Deuteronomy 31:8) 
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