Trees of Transition

Planting seeds of hope throughout our world through sharing photography and thoughts on teaching, cooking, and life transitions.


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First Seven Days of Parenthood

This photo shows how I feel about these first seven days of parenthood—wonder, thankfulness, joy, tiredness…

My days have been filled with nursing (it is my full-time job right now), changing diapers, holding our baby, eating and drinking a lot and resting. I love seeing Joel’s eyes look at me with curiosity when he has content times—he might have blue eyes!

Thankfulness and joy are the top two feelings I’m having right now because Joel is a gift I’ve waited and hoped for my whole life, and I’m so thankful for him! The joy of a dream fulfilled is a truckload of rejoicing and the joy of holding a little baby of my own helps the aches and fatigue melt away.

Joel arrived on November 14th at 2:20am; 9 lb 8 oz and 23 inches long after a 50 hour labor (the last 10 hours at the hospital). We are tired, but SO happy! We are so thankful for the love and help pouring in!!

-Mary Hope

Copyright 2017

P.S. Thank you for stopping by! I insert affiliate links, such as  Amazon, into my posts to share interesting books and products. If you buy something or start a registry, I receive income, for which I am thankful. So…

— shop on  Amazon

–shop at my Etsy photo card/notecard/art shop: Trees of Transition Art & Design

–keep on reading this blog.

Thank you again, and peace to you and your family!

~Mary Hope

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To Buy or Not to Buy–Essential Items for a Baby Registry 


A friend (who loves simplicity and does not put up with clutter) gave me a list of essential items to have for taking care of a baby! 

I am 5-months pregnant, and I’m still figuring out what we need to get, so seeing this list is reassuring because it seems doable.

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Finding Out We Are Pregnant!


After realizing that I might be pregnant, we waited for a night of the week that we were both free so we could both be there when I took the pregnancy test! I pulled out the white test that we had received as a wedding gift, followed the directions, and then we went down to our new aqua blue couch and waited. We had three minutes to wait; on our aqua blue couch, we held each other a talked about “What if!?” we were pregnant.

After the timer went off, we walked up to the bathroom and looked at the test. Would there be a pink cross? Or would it just be the pink line of normalness?

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Baby Schuh is Due to Arrive in November!

Stephen and I want you to know that we are having a baby in early November! I am almost 17 weeks along, and this morning I felt the baby move for the first time!! While still in bed, I was laying there quietly with my hand on my belly; I could feel my heartbeat, but then I felt more than my heartbeat—a quick dart of movement, like the jumping of a fish, a flash of swimming, and then peace again. Baby Schuh let me feel him or her for the first time, and I got goosebumps and a rush of joy.

Stephen and I are so thankful for this baby! At 9 weeks along we got to see our baby for the first time through an ultrasound, and we could see the baby’s heart pulsing. Baby’s heart chugged away, and Stephen is great at copying the sound (which is like our own heartbeat, but much faster.) Having the picture of the baby has been meaningful and fun to show other people, and so many people are already so excited about this baby!

This is Baby Schuh at 9 weeks old; you can see his or her tiny head, arms, and body. We like to call Baby Schuh “Peanut.”

Last Thursday, I told my students about the baby like this: After they took their last vocabulary test, I said, “We have had another student in our class for the last three months…” Then they started guessing, and then a girl said quietly, “Pregnant?” I pointed at her, and asked her to say it louder, which she did. Then I said, “Yes, I am pregnant!!” Then the whole room let loose with claps, cheers (a dramatic student let out a few screams of joy), and we talked for the rest of class. My students have had a lot of ideas about names, advice, and a few girls said, “I thought you might be pregnant.” My favorite silly name from one guy student, who loves to goof around, is “Bless Schuh”—so it sounds like “Bless you!” Haha.

We are SO excited and thankful for this child. Thanks for sharing our joy with us!

~Mary & Stephen

Copyright 2017


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The Little Girl Arrived!

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I sent off this crocheted baby blanket to a friend the day the baby girl arrived!
I crocheted a chain stitch the length I wanted, counted four stitches in, then did seven triple crochet stitches in that hole. I anchored it, counted four stitches, and did it on both sides of the crocheted chain. Next I started doing only five triple crocheted stitches in all the rest of the rows back and forth until it was long enough. This is a great way to make blankets!

By M. H. Campbell Copyright 2014


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Throwing Teddy Overboard: The Human Tendency to Hit Back

Humans just want to hit back; even babies show this trait. For example, my 14-month old nephew, Jack, is getting sleep trained right now, and he desires to be held until he is in a deep sleep. He thinks that is what is best. His parents know that he needs to learn to comfort and sooth himself, and if he learns that, he will be a more emotionally capable person. So when he gets put down to sleep, he has been held for a while, just not until he’s fully asleep; he riles himself up and howls for a while. He throws his blanket out of the crib. He lays back down (his parents and I can watch him via baby video camera), rests a bit, then stands up again wailing. He grabs teddy by the leg and tries to stuff him through the crib’s bars. Eventually teddy is thrown out of the crib, followed by Wolfgang, the bear. He takes out his anger on his comfort items by throwing them out! Eventually he curls up and falls asleep. Seeing Jack act like this made me reflect on my own actions recently and think about anger, grace, and forgiveness.

Grace…forgiveness…are words thrown around especially in the religious culture; however, when confronted with really having to walk in these attitudes, it is impossible to do by yourself.

God is even more compassionate than my brother and his wife (who are amazing and this sleep training really is stretching them). He comforts us for a while, but then puts us in situations where He wants us to learn to comfort ourselves and rest in Him even when we don’t like what is happening. I, for one, have cried and wanted to “throw my blanky out of the crib”—frustrated for what is happening in my life. I do not have grace and forgiveness on my own. I howl inside and want to hit back.

Seeing my nephew has helped me see how ridiculous I have been recently. God is not watching me via video camera—He is right next to me, walking with me through pain and betrayal. He understands and has given me the ability to extend grace and forgiveness. It’s Him! I still have some anger to work through, but when I stop “wailing” and just curl up and rest, God gives me the grace needed for right now. AND He is a good father, so if He let something good leave my life, He must have something better up ahead.

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