Feb 20

Birth Day Diaries: Entry Two

2006 at 12:31 pm   |   by Nicole Whitacre Filed under Motherhood

Bxp38876 still 2 cm dilated, 80 percent effaced

We got here at around 8:30 a.m. and after checking in, we met Janelle’s entertaining nurse, Barbara. She’s wearing an Eeyore nurse’s jacket and matching Eeyore socks. However, her personality doesn’t match her favorite Winnie-the-Pooh character; she’s more a cross between Tigger and Rabbit—Tigger’s enthusiasm and Rabbit’s efficiency. Perfect.

After bravely enduring the first needle of the day (her fluid IV) Janelle gave us a little scare when she became faint and her blood pressure dropped. But everything has stabilized now and the doctor just broke Janelle’s water. The good news is that all the back pain she’s been experiencing has actually been contractions!

Surprisingly, Janelle hasn’t demanded an epidural. Although maybe that’s because she hasn’t actually been induced yet. Janelle_pregnant_1



Feb 20

Birth Day Diaries: Entry One

2006 at 7:40 am   |   by Janelle Bradshaw Filed under Motherhood

Images2Good morning, everyone! I hardly know what to write. The day that I have been praying and thinking about for nine months is finally here. I’m doing well. Sleep last night was pretty fitful, but my heart is at peace. I’m very aware of the Lord’s nearness and promise to help me. I just can’t wait to hold my little girl in my arms. Mike and I lay awake last night, as we have on so many occasions, trying to guess who she might look like. It’s hard to imagine that all of our wondering is quickly approaching an end.

Nicole will take over the posting from here. Thank you so much to all of you who are praying for me! Would you do me this great kindness for one more day?

Here’s the first picture of the day, fresh out of bed. Don’t worry I’m going to hit the shower and the makeup now.


Feb 17

Friday Funnies

2006 at 6:00 pm   |   by Janelle Bradshaw Filed under Fun & Encouragement | Friday Funnies

A much loved part of my life is about to fade away any day now…SLEEP! It reminds me of what the nurse told my grandmother right after the birth of her first child: “Congratulations, Mrs. Layman, your sleeping days are over.”

You might find me in a similar pose once sleep deprivation sets in!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. We will see you on Monday—the BIG DAY—unless baby decides to make an appearance sooner.

for Carolyn, Nicole, and Kristin







Feb 17

From One First Lady to Another

2006 at 4:03 pm   |   by Kristin Chesemore Filed under Marriage

When an interviewer once asked Barbara Bush what advice she gave to her daughter-in-law Laura Bush, her answer was simple: “Don’t criticize your husband.” The elder Mrs. Bush recalled a remark she made about one of George Bush Sr.’s speeches: “I think you’re tired, and you mumbled your words.” The effect of this seemingly innocent comment? “When I criticized George, he remembered it for months afterwards.”

“So I really took her advice to heart,” Laura Bush said. “I knew there were plenty of other critics [of my husband] without me being one of them. Until one night we were driving into our driveway and he said, ‘Tell me the truth, how was my speech?’ And I said, ‘Well, it wasn’t that good.’ And with that, he drove into the garage wall!”

Although our president might be the only man to have driven into a garage wall upon hearing his wife’s criticism, the fact remains: our critical words can have a debilitating effect on our husbands! I imagine that many men, like the first President Bush, remember their wife’s critical words for months or even years.

My mom has observed that, of all the criticism our husbands may receive—from their boss or their family or even an enemy—a wife’s disparaging remarks can often do the most damage. To me, this is a sobering thought. I regret many a hasty, critical comment that I’ve made to Brian.

This doesn’t mean there is not a place for gentle correction at times. As wives, it is our responsibility to help our husbands in their pursuit of godliness. However, there is a big difference between gentle correction motivated out of a heart of love and sinful, unkind criticism.

However, as detrimental as our criticism is, our words of encouragement carry a unique, life-giving potential for our husbands. Recently, I sat down with my husband and asked him what he experiences when I encourage him. He said that my encouraging words sustain him, and help him to persevere in life and godliness. He said they help him to be aware of God’s grace at work in his life, changing him to be more like the Savior. And my encouragement makes him feel prized and appreciated. What a stunning effect my words can have!

Now, please don’t assume I’m the world’s most encouraging wife. Far from it! As Brian described the effect of my encouragement I was saddened by how little I do encourage him, but freshly inspired to make this a greater priority.

If your husband, like mine, would list “encouragement” in his “Top Three,” consider making small but specific changes. Seek to refrain from critical remarks, and instead, look for creative ways to express encouragement.

For example, put a sticky note somewhere telling him that you love him. Hide a card and his favorite candy in his bag when he goes on a business trip (this is my husband’s favorite). Or think about one character trait where he really shines, and tell him so!

Our husband may never be President of the United States, but when we refrain from criticism and cultivate encouragement, we can give them confidence in our love, inspire them to persevere, and point them to the Savior.

Feb 16

Baby Watch:Week 39

2006 at 6:39 pm   |   by Janelle Bradshaw Filed under Motherhood

Baby Bradshaw is going to hold out for as long as possible! I went for my weekly doctor’s visit this afternoon and heard an identical report as last time - 2 cm. dilated and almost 80% effaced. My doctor still thinks I could go any day, but mommy isn’t holding her breath. If I don’t go on my own this weekend they will induce me on Monday morning at 9 a.m. It was funny leaving the doctor’s office today and not making an appointment for next week. Girly only has four more days to make up her little mind to come on her own accord.

Thank you to all those who have sent me such encouraging e-mails. I have been so blessed by your care and prayers. Pray that baby decides to join us sometime before Monday’s hospital visit. We will keep you updated…


Feb 16

The Undisputed #1

2006 at 4:03 pm   |   by Nicole Whitacre Filed under Marriage | Sex & Romance

The first topic in our mini-series—“Top Three”—is marital intimacy. By “top three,” we don’t mean a wife’s top three priorities as outlined in Scripture, but rather, the top three ways in which we can best fulfill the scriptural command to love our husbands—which will be different for everyone. But for my husband (and I suspect for many others), intimacy holds an unrivaled position at #1.

This topic of intimacy however, is only appropriate for married women to consider. Single women and young girls are, in the eloquent words of Solomon, not to “stir up or awaken love until it pleases” (S of S 2:7). For this reason, we are providing today’s post in a downloadable document and ask that unmarried women refrain from reading it. Married women, you can continue reading here.

Feb 16

“King For A Week”

2006 at 12:18 pm   |   by Janelle Bradshaw

This royal title was bestowed upon the GirlTalk blog by blogger Tim Challies. Each week Challies chooses a new recipient of this honor and features their posts on the sidebar of his blog.

Now, Mr. Challies, the GirlTalkers are honored to be awarded this prestigious title, and we were just wondering—does this come with anything? Given the designation “King” found in the title of your award, we thought that you might accompany this honor with, let’s say, a royal feast of some kind. Just in case you were wondering, my favorite restaurants are Outback and Houston’s. Although, we GirlTalkers also love to shop, and we would accept any and all donations toward a shopping spree. If these sound too low key, a cruise would work. I’m thinking the Bahamas or Hawaii. We would also be fine with Disney World if you are looking to simplify things. I leave this decision entirely up to you.

All joking aside, we do want to sincerely thank Mr. Challies for his kind words and encouragement. We feel as though we are barely keeping our heads above water with this blog thing, and being chosen “King for a Week” blessed each one of us. We also want to say a big “hello” to those of you visiting us for the first time from Mr. Challies blog. We hope you enjoy your visit!

For all of our regulars, take a moment and check out Tim Challies blog. While you are there, you can also read his recent review of Mom’s book, Feminine Appeal.

Once again, thank you to Tim Challies from all of us here at GirlTalk!

Feb 15

Q & A—Guy/Girl Relationships Pt. 2

2006 at 6:34 pm   |   by Nicole Whitacre Filed under Biblical Womanhood | Singleness | Relationship Advice | Q&A

After posting last week’s Q&A on Guy/Girl Relationships, we received the following e-mail from a reader named Amy. She wrote to tell us her love story, which, besides being a fun read, beautifully illustrates the principles we laid out in that post. Amy’s story is full of the peaceful wisdom that comes from learning to trust in the Lord. And while no two love stories are the same, we can all be encouraged by this striking example of God’s sovereignty, which graciously rules over all our lives.

When I was a senior in high school, I developed a great friendship with two Christian guys, and I ended up falling for one of them. Although I never let on about my feelings, I had a terrible habit of overanalyzing his every move, hoping to find evidence that he was secretly in love with me. But I had no real reason to believe he was. And I didn’t know if he ever WOULD be interested in me. I think all I did was make myself crazy!

I also knew that the timing was off—having read and loved good old I Kissed Dating Goodbye, I was proudly (sometimes militantly ?) single, and I knew neither of us was ready for a serious, marriage-focused relationship. (I actually confided in my best friend at one point: “I don’t want to date Steve now. I just want to marry him later!”) Yet in spite of my confidence in a purpose-filled, focused season of singleness, I longed for God to just tell me in advance whether Steve and I would ever be together. I can’t tell you how many times I begged Him to give me some clarity one way or the other.

I knew that any sort of relationship might still be a few years away, but I foolishly reasoned that if God would just tell me, then I could let it go. I could either move on and forget about Steve if the answer was no, or if the answer was yes, I could rest in the knowledge that it would happen in a few years, and stop obsessing over it. What I didn’t yet understand was that God wanted me to learn to rest in HIM—not in the specifics of a plan concerning my love life. So of course I got no such clear answer. [Read More…]

Feb 15

Update on John Piper’s Surgery

2006 at 6:08 pm   |   by Carolyn Mahaney Filed under Biblical Womanhood | Suffering

This morning I received a joyous email from Noel Piper, telling me that her husband John’s prostate cancer surgery yesterday was a success. The Pipers are truly grateful for everyone’s prayers, and we ask that you continue to pray for a full recovery. You can read an update on the surgery at the Desiring God Ministries website. But I also want to encourage each of you to carefully consider John Piper’s article “Don’t Waste Your Cancer,” written on the eve of his surgery. Whether or not you are experiencing a physical trial right now, we will all experience suffering at some time in our lives. As a wise pastor in the furnace of his own personal trial, John Piper counsels us how to think about pain in light of God’s Word, and instructs us how not to waste it.

Feb 15

A GirlTalk Valentine’s Day: Idea #6

2006 at 1:01 pm   |   by Janelle Bradshaw Filed under Homemaking | Holidays

Heart_10Hey y’all, you thought that these Valentine’s ideas were over, but we had to throw one more at you. A few people (thanks to Rachel for this particular one) sent us ideas which involved a 14 day countdown leading up to the big day. We didn’t start the contest early enough for you to actually use these ideas this year, but we wanted to begin sparking that creativity for next year…

I decided to do 14 Days of Valentine’s Day (similar to 12 Days of Christmas). Starting February 1 and continuing each day until February 14, I do something special to show my husband how much I love and appreciate him. This takes a bit of pre-planning (I collect ideas all year), but it’s well worth it! This year, things I’ve done include personalizing the lyrics of a song and putting them somewhere unexpected for him to find, baking heart-shaped cookies for him to find in his lunch box, filling his car with pink, red & white balloons and leaving a huge love note on the steering wheel for him to find after work, and creating a special evening for us after the kids were in bed, complete with candles, chocolate and a romantic board game. I can make the gifts as elaborate and expensive or as simple and inexpensive to fit my budget and time. This tradition helps me to focus on showing my husband my love in a way that I don’t often get to do as a busy mother of 2 toddlers, and makes Valentine’s Day itself extra special.