Gigi Blog » The life and loveliness of Gigi's World

Not the Norm.

 

{photos by Abby – my awesome hubalicious}

 

 

{baby headband by Sassy Sweet Pea}

 

I took the girls out for lunch to a local diner last week.
You should’ve seen the looks on some people’s faces as one, two, three, four  (and one baby) followed me to the table … “Are they all yours?” “Oh, you are in trouble in the teen years!” “You have your hands full!”

Lots of remarks. Some positive. Some just out of curiosity (“Trying for that boy?!”), others out of encouragement, some are negative.
Many moms, now grandmas or moms of older children, often come to me and sigh and say “I wish I had more children … ”

Sometimes I just smile. But sometimes I feel frustrated with the negative comments, only because they are usually said right in front of my children – definitely within earshot. Can you imagine, as a little child, always hearing people say to your parents “And so are you DONE now??!” or “You’re crazy! I don’t know how you do it!” …

I want my girls to hear positive words about them – blessings – instead of negative comments that we have chosen to have more children than the average family in North America. {And we only have five – there are more families with way more children!} I want my girls to remember my responses when we go out and someone says “Your poor husband!” …

“Actually, Abby wanted all these girls.”
“Yes, honestly, we do have hands full but our HEARTS are more full.”  (Okay, cheesy? Yes, well it works. And it’s true.)

“And, no, I’m not (100%) scared of the teenage years with five girls – because God is control.”

“Yes, we’d LOVE more!”

 

And yes, I *AM* so blessed! These children are gifts from God and I am EVER SO grateful for each and every one of them. And I’d have 20 more if I could. (Maybe?!)

 

Big families have always fascinated me. How they work. How they handle the number of people in their family. How they manage a home. How they travel. How they function in society.

And now we have a big family. And I love it. I can’t wait to see where God takes our ‘little’ family as He weaves us together in His plan.

 

{Leia Hyacinth – 7 weeks old}

 

 

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

It’s been a while since we’ve done a giveaway – I think it’s time again! A little while ago, The Hungry Hollow contacted me about giving away this GORGEOUS apron on the blog!

Hands up for those who makes messes while you are in the kitchen?!

*MEEEEEEE!*

Well, let me just say the days of apron-wearing are NOT over yet.

They may have been tucked in the closets during the 90s but today, ladies, today, is the day to DON an apron! (Seriously. I LOVE my aprons. I use them when I can, bake, cook… all messy kitchen related things.) Even if you only bake cookies once a month, this apron is worth wearing.

 

I had no model so sorry I had to model it. :S

 

 

One reader will *win* this apron – all you have to do is go to the Hungry Hollow facebook page, like them, come back and let me know in the comments!! They have a great website full of fantastic tips on raising your own food, gardens, chicken raising, baking, canning … all the works, my lady friends. I love this site!

 

At the end of the week, we’ll draw a winning name using Random.org.

 

And listen, once you win this apron, you will have NO excuse but to get baking! (Okay, unless there is a heat wave – wait for a rainy day and then bake up a storm!)

 

 

June 18, 2012 - 12:29 pm

Amber Black - I may have missed the deadline but wanted to comment anyway. Gillian, you look stunning! I came from a big family too and recall hearing a few comments. We did without some things growing up but I can honestly say that it made me a better and stronger person and I love that I have a big source of love and support to turn to when I need it. If I had started my family earlier I would have more children too. I always said I wanted 5 children and here you are. I love living vicariously through your posts and am so glad I know you through cyberspace. You are an inspiring women and an amazing mom. {{Hugs}} Love the apron BTW!

June 16, 2012 - 8:01 am

Marlys Folly - I hope that this is still open as I would love to have that apron…but if not I enjoyed reading your blog… I come from a family of 9 and can’t even imagine not having many brothers and sisters.. My mother passed away at an early age (my youngest sister only 4) and when I look back at that time, I think my dad would have gone crazy if there were only a couple of us (I was already grown and out of the house) but he needed to pick up his feet as he had many children to support. We also got many comments about our big family – some rude, some nice but we all grew up happy and rich in love and have good jobs and have had our own families.. I do have a story when my mother was expecting my second youngest sister, I needed to stay at home with the younger children when she was in the hospital so talked to my teacher about it… My teacher said “SHE”S HAVING ANOTHER BABY!” I am sure you can imagine the voice… and I told her in a straight face… No, she is having Dana over again (I was 14 at the time)… Love that you think your girls are a gift from God… Children are precious and are a gift ~~ I feel it even more that I have never been able to carry a pregnancy full term and get irritated when mother’s say “I should have never had you” ~~ I have told them to appreciate their gift as it was given with love! But I am rambling…
By the way… I already had liked Hungry Hollow and will look forward to more of your blogs and wonderful pictures..

June 16, 2012 - 7:51 am

Lauren - I know what you mean – I feel the stares as I walk around with 3 in tow and my belly growing with number 4. I always wonder how to graciously respond in a way that affirms my children and lets others know, hey, we love our kids!

I liked the Hungry Hollow on facebook – love that apron!

June 16, 2012 - 7:37 am

Charmaine - I liked Hungry Hollow on facebook! Great post and words of encouragement! Especially for those future people that see you in public and maybe have read your blog post and thought, “oh no! I was one of those who made that comment!”

June 16, 2012 - 12:55 am

Wendy - Love the apron, liked the Hungry Hollow, and LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog! I know that at times when I get frustrated with the chaos of motherhood, I can always come here to be reminded of how blessed I am to be a mother.

June 15, 2012 - 10:58 pm

Dawn-Addicted to Recipes - Thanks to you, I’m now a fan over at The Hungry Hollow! Have a fabulous Friday!

June 15, 2012 - 10:38 pm

Julie Heath - The Hungry Hollow page is awesome! Thanks for linking to it!

June 15, 2012 - 9:31 pm

Jeane Beasley - Beautiful apron…would LOVE to have one.

June 15, 2012 - 9:28 pm

Michelle - I have been a Hungry Hollow follower for a while now,and glad to see your site.As a Mom with 2 grown boys I had a hard time and did incemination to get pregnant for both as it was impossible otherwise to have kids.God blessed me with 2 boys and I am greatful,you too are blessed and never listen to other people and there ignorant comments.God Bless your family.

June 15, 2012 - 9:13 pm

Gwen N - Love the apron – just did a question post about aprons :) Have followed the Hungry Hollow and love the site! Your pictures are beautiful too :)

June 15, 2012 - 8:54 pm

Jeanine - the Baking Beauties - LOVE the aprons from The Hungry Hollow! I follow Cathy on FB as well. :)

June 15, 2012 - 8:49 pm

Cindy @ Hun, What's for Dinner? - Beautiful photos!! I’m a fan of Cathy and the Hungry Hollow :o )

June 15, 2012 - 1:44 pm

Natalie - I hear the same comments about our family with four girls. I can’t imagine life without any of them. Children are a challenge in the most positive sense of the word. They encourage you to expand your horizons, become a better person, see the world with new eyes and enjoy the wonder of the world. I love to bake with my girlies and had to put my name in for a pink apron. I would wear it and deliver cookies to my friends on my pink bike :) I will be keeping an eye on the Hungry Hollow’s products for sure!

June 15, 2012 - 10:23 am

Tara - I totally agree with you that most peoples comments are negative about children, marriage, everything..it’s so sad. Your little girls are definitely a blessing and a gift. Thank you for sharing them with us. Also thanks for sharing hungry hollow..it’s perfect for us. We have 10 chickens now and are getting 3 little piggies delivered on tuesday…my 2 kids are going to have cuteness overload!!!!

June 15, 2012 - 10:20 am

Tara - I agree with you and most peoples comments are negative on children, marriage…everything. It’s so sad. Your little girls are definitely gifts and blessings. Thank you so much for sharing your little ones with us. Hungry Hollow is perfect for us…we’re getting 3 little piggies delivered to our house on tuesday !!! We have 10 chickens right now and our 2 kids love them..can’t wait to see them with piggies.

June 14, 2012 - 10:45 pm

Candace Reid - Thanks for sharing. I work with alot of people and comments are usually negative about marriage and children. For the first year of my marriage I always got the comment, ” just give it another year and then we’ll see how you like being married.” Today’s society is too BUSY for the most precious gifts God has given us. P.s I think I am going to love the hungry hollow, and the apron if I win! God Bless

June 14, 2012 - 7:55 pm

Bronwen - I liked Hungry Hollow! That apron is gorgeous and so is your family. Ditto what the others have said about you being an inspiration! I also would like a big family…we’re at two for now :)

June 14, 2012 - 7:38 pm

Jenn - Great Post…I think all families that are bigger than the norm feel how you do. Beautifully written :) Thanks for sharing a great site…added it to my favs!

June 14, 2012 - 6:19 pm

Debbie VanWyck - I can’t believe that anyone is rude enough (and that’s what it is…rude)to comment on the number of children that you and Abby are blessed to have. I think that you should just put their insensitive comments in the “delete” file.

And you have witnessed me baking…so an apron is always handy.

June 14, 2012 - 6:05 pm

Katherine - Firstly I want to say that I agree that you are so blessed to have a big family, I’ve always wanted to have a big family myself and your family is beautiful! :)

Secondly, I would like to enter The Hungry Hollow apron give away please. The page has been liked. :D

June 14, 2012 - 5:03 pm

jenn - I love the hungry hollow! Where would we be if we never heard anything encouraging?

June 14, 2012 - 3:19 pm

Mich - Such beautiful pics Gillian of you and Leia :) Wow, she is 7wks old already! I love the apron and hope to win, then maybe it will encourage me to get more creative in my baking and cooking. I have liked her site and look forward to checking it out :)

June 14, 2012 - 2:47 pm

Melissa - Love your blog, love your pics! I have two girls that fill my days with sunshine so I can only imagine how bright your days are : ) Hungry Hollow looks great! Thanks

June 14, 2012 - 2:28 pm

Andrea - One of my favorite memories is baking with my Grandma who always wore her apron and I have now inherited!

June 14, 2012 - 1:56 pm

Jocelyn - Hi Gillian! I really enjoy your blog, and it looks like now I’ll be hooked on Hungry Hollow as well :P

I have 2 girls so far and I hope to be blessed with more, as many as He will entrust to my care :) I’ve had the privilege to be with women at the end of thier lives, and I have NEVER heard anyone say, “I wish I’d had fewer children.” Children are the most wonderful gift!

June 14, 2012 - 1:50 pm

Darlene - Each child IS a blessing from God no matter how he/she comes into your life; you are so right for being thoughtful about what is said ‘over their heads’ (literally or figuratively) as the messages should be positive for your family is something to be thankful for! Congratulations :)

June 14, 2012 - 1:45 pm

Amelia - me! me! i liked! I want! lol
I was thinking that I might want to offer you a smart ass comment to make the next time someone says something negative but you know.. just smile sweetly and ignore them dummass ppl.
your girls are lucky to have you and you are both lucky to have them. Five blessings and who knows, maybe more to come. Hugs and you take care.

June 14, 2012 - 1:28 pm

Sonya - Amen! So very true! I cringe when someone says something negative about our family when the kids are right there! And love the apron ;)

June 14, 2012 - 12:50 pm

Lisa - Love Hungry Hollow webpage.Love the Apron. Love your blog.

June 14, 2012 - 12:43 pm

justyna - Love the apron, Hungry Hollow looks awesome!! Thanks for sharing it.

June 14, 2012 - 12:42 pm

Sam - Gillian, you have NO idea how inspiring you are. You are such an encouragement. I’ve always wanted some type of large family too..whether it be through all of my own kids, or adoption or fostering some as well..I have no idea what God has in store but I am thankful to “know” women like you who have not put God’s plans for your life inside a box of what society views as acceptable. EVERY child is born because of God’s plan…because He foresaw amazing purposes for their life. Your girls are all so blessed to grow up in such a nurturing family, and I have no doubt that they will be used by God for amazing things. May the Lord continually bless you richly for saying “yes!” to His plans for your life.

June 14, 2012 - 12:40 pm

Devon - LOVE this blog Gillian, we only have 3 and I get the same looks and questions – with the added “but you can’t be more than 18!” Sometimes I feel that the world looks at children as a nuisance instead of the wonderful blessings that they are. And to only think, one day these little beings are going to be changing our diapers when we hit old age…. or maybe they will just shove us off into some nursing home so they don’t have to deal with the nuisance! Thanks for sharing! <3 (Liked the page btw!)

June 14, 2012 - 12:39 pm

Lexi - Great post and beautiful family

I too get the comments but not how many I have but the age difference between my two boys

I liked the Hungry Hollow and that apron is gorgeous and would love to bake in it with my son :)

June 14, 2012 - 12:34 pm

Lexi - Great post and beautiful family

I too get the comments but not on how manyI have but the age difference between my two boys

That apron is gorgeous and would to bake in it with my son :)

Lexi

June 14, 2012 - 12:15 pm

Tracey Fawcett White - Thought if I won the apron I would pass it along to my daughter. She is about your size and doesn’t own an apron. Liked… Hungry Hallow. Tips from gardening to canning. Looking forward to their posts.

June 14, 2012 - 12:13 pm

Jessica - very nice – you have a gift in writing! went and liked the page, that apron is beautiful!

June 14, 2012 - 12:11 pm

Liz Bronsveld - Love, so beautiful!! You have such a beautiful family<3
Love the apron too!! I went and liked them!!

June 14, 2012 - 12:07 pm

Laura - Love your post – love your kids! I went to the Hungy Hollow – looks excellent and I would love to win this apron for my sister!

June 14, 2012 - 12:07 pm

Julie - Just liked the hungry hollow. Fingers crossed for the apron. Love your blog and photography Gillian. We also have a little big family (4 wonderful girls) and wouldn’t change it . Take care!

June 14, 2012 - 11:55 am

karen - I love your blogs! I love the apron and can’t wait to try the winning brownie recipe!

June 14, 2012 - 11:53 am

brandy - Found hungry hollow! what a beautiful blog, both in writting and pictures :) the apron is so beautiful, and so is your house by the looks of it!! loved the blue stool and the floors! blessings to you and your family :)

June 14, 2012 - 11:52 am

Joanne - I Absolutly Looove it:)) went and liked it!!

June 14, 2012 - 11:37 am

Melanie - What an incredible blog post! Children definitely are gifts from God! You are so blessed!! I liked the page btw. AND you look great in the apron!!!! :)

June 14, 2012 - 11:28 am

Amanda - Liked!…Such a beautiful apron!! All your girls are soo beautiful!! I love when you share new blogs :) :)

June 14, 2012 - 11:22 am

Mary Lou - I found Hungry Hollow very earthy…to my liking…a lot of useful information being shared by many!
I come from a family of 6 so you still need to catch up…my Uncle had 5 beautiful daughters and they are as close today as they were as children :-) You are truly blessed!

June 14, 2012 - 11:15 am

Grandma Gerr - Once again you have written a wonderful blog!
All those beautiful girls! You and Hubby are Blessed!
Great Photos! x

June 14, 2012 - 11:11 am

Brenda (Gillian's Mom) - Gillian, I am so proud of you and Abby!!! I LOVE that fact that I have 7 grandchildren now and knowing that more are to come. Especially since your brother has not started yet! LOL
You are a great model and look stunning in that apron!!
I would love to win it!!!
Mom xo

June 14, 2012 - 11:01 am

Keri - Love this post! I too get the ‘looks’ and ‘comments’ about our 4 girls.. I wish more people could see it as a positive! Even my own parents don’t seem to ‘get it’ I love ALL of my girls and would have many more if it were in the cards for us… as for that apron! I love to bake and cook for this lil big family of ours! I’ve ‘liked’ the page! *Fingers crossed*

June 14, 2012 - 10:58 am

Jen Heemskerk - Yeah for pink aprons and for “getting back to the basics” from Hungry Hollow. Love the photos of you and your little sweetheart. And I can totally relate to the negative comments as well- since we had 4 in 5 years. But I am blessed and they are the most perfect gifts!

June 14, 2012 - 10:51 am

Kristin - Beautiful as always.

June 14, 2012 - 10:50 am

Amanda Young - Great post! Children are truly a blessing from God. Love how you expressed it in your blog!
The Hungry Hollow has a great website full of fantastic tips on raising your own food, gardens, chicken raising, baking and canning. I love this site! Thank you for sharing it!! Some great ideas!!

June 14, 2012 - 10:48 am

Jenn - Liked…and with good reason it seems! What a beauty of an apron (and what a beauty of a family you have too!)

June 14, 2012 - 10:45 am

Heather - Love the apron and it is just my colour. Thanks for introducing me to Hungry Hollow too.