It's been a really, *really* long time. It actually would have been even longer if I wasn't trying to waste time while I upload a ton of monstrous files for a project I'm working on. Right now we're at 27 of 63 files completed. And when they finish I have another 60-ish files to start. So while I'm waiting, I'll give you a little updater-oo.
I've been SO busy!! Lily Mae takes a lot of my time and attention, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I totally love being a mom - just thinking about it makes me smile :D She's a great little baby, and though I'm positive I'll eat my words at some point (maybe very soon), right now taking care of her is - dare I say it? - easy. She's a happy baby most of the time. She eats well (still exclusively breastfed!) and her feeding times have been cut in half from an hour to 30 minutes, on average. She's gotten much better (and faster) at eating which makes my life easier. I'm also still cloth diapering her full time which couldn't be going any better - I love it! If I were a pushy person I'd try to convert everyone to cloth (but since I'm not, I'll save my opinions for my blog :P). My only complaint? She's a downright crappy napper. The girl sleeps through the night (!!!) but once she's up for the day, she's pretty much UP. IF she naps at all, it's maybe once for 15-30 minutes. That's why I get my work done after she goes to bed for the most part, and also why I usually don't get to go to bed until after 2am. I really wish she took consistent naps. Twice a day, even. For at least an hour each. That'd really rock my world. But as it stands, the girl just isn't that tired. She doesn't get too cranky during the day while she's awake, and I've tried lots of things but she just won't sleep during the day (wants to play with mommy, I guess). I hope this is just a phase.
Other than Lily Mae, I've been trying my best to keep up with my domestic wifely duties - cooking, cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping. I've really struggled in this area the most, but the house isn't ever about to fall apart so I consider that a win. I want the house to be clean....clutter makes me gag. But I can't get around to it! Ah well, such is life, and there are more important things.
I've been working my tail off on tons of projects, mostly for church. I was the photographer for a huge outreach event we had and I put together a collage for the service the following Sunday. I also compiled/edited photos and made banners for each family that participated in a baby dedication service last Sunday (we dedicated Lily Mae!). I've also been totally honored that our pastor has asked for my help for a special church planting project. He is visiting our sending church in Kentucky to encourage their congregation to support another plant. He asked me to take pictures of our various services and create a special presentation for him to show - something that would tell the story of our church. I've worked super hard on this project, making it my mission to deliver an awesome product to him (these are the mega-huge files I'm uploading at the moment - 55 of 63!). So other than photography, I've been working on a couple websites. First is a fitness coaching site I'm building for my cousin, and the other is for a church that our church is planting. There's kind of a time crunch on both of those sites, so I've been building them at every chance I get!
And in addition to those projects, about two months ago I dove right back into all my other church responsibilities - the finance team coordinator, youth ministry leader (one of many), children's worship leader, high school girl's small group leader (one of three), prayer team member, creative team member, communication team member, and couple's small group co-leader [inhale]. So now you see why I haven't been blogging ;-) And no, I'm not over-burdened or burnt out by these things - my life is perfectly balanced at the moment thankyouverymuch. I love my life and the areas of service for my church that fill it!
(Ooh! 63 of 63 files complete! On to the last set! 0 of 52...)
I thought that I'd get a break and some time to relax come Monday - all my photo projects and websites will be completed by then. But then I remembered.... Christmas is coming!! And in true Jess style, I'll be making at least some gifts for friends and family as I do every year. So those projects need to get under way soon! I'm very excited to spend Thanksgiving with Clark's family next week and to play host for our annual Christmas party in early December - joy, joy!! All this has seemed very overwhelming as I've typed it all out, but seriously I assure you - everything is in a great balance.
I've got some posts I've been working on/thinking about/taking pictures for for months now and they should be posted in the next couple weeks (but you know better than to hold your breath): cloth diapering basics and product reviews, a video tour of Lily Mae's finished room, a more detailed Lily Mae update, and monthly highlights in photoblog style. Stay tuned! So enough about me..... how are YOU guys?!? Is anyone still out there?