May 30, 2011
Just because my kids don't know the states or their capitals...
We're going to sing this song every morning at scripture time.
Don't you love this song??
Fifty Nifty United States from thirteen original colonies;
Fifty Nifty stars in the flag that billows so beautifully in the breeze.
Each individual state contributes a quality that is great.
Each individual state deserves a bow, We salute them now.
Fifty Nifty United States from thirteen original colonies,
Shout 'em, scout 'em, Tell all about 'em,
One by one,til we've given a day to every state in the USA
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut-
Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana-
Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine,
Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan,-
Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana,
New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York,-
North Carolina, North Dakota, O H I O,-
Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina,
South Dakota, Tennessee, Tex-as,-
Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
North, South, East, West in our calm, objective opinion (Name of favorite State)
Is the Best of the Fifty Nifty United States from thirteen original colonies
Shout 'em,scout'em, tell all about 'em
One by One, till we've given a day to every state in the good old U...S...A...... (hold all for three to four seconds)
Tomorrow we'll start by watching this video...
After we learn the states, we'll learn the capitals...
just because, i'm that kind of mother.
they love me. :)
May 28, 2011
The egg in the mug is making your ghetto round egg.
(My sister says you need to break to yoke so it doesn't explode. My eggs kinda explode even when I do break the egg-- that's why I say they are "ghetto".)
Cover the mug (with saran wrap or with another plate) and cook in the microwave for 1 minute.
The egg just slides out.
Layer muffin, egg and cheese.
May 27, 2011
and, this year i had a baby and i'm moving and i haven't done ANY of the fun things that i'm used to doing.
no end of the year gifts for the teachers.
no summer baskets for my kids.
my kids are not in ANY spring sports- the only thing we're still doing is piano.
and, i haven't helped with ANY of my kids' end of the year parties.
i miss being active, creative and involved.
but, i know this is a transition time for our family.
I have no problem scaling back my life when I begin to feel overwhelmed.
In fact, scaling back has been exactly what we've needed.
Even though this new baby takes a lot of my time, my home is still clean enough for house showings every other day.
My kids are happy- because I'm not rushing them to and from activities.
And, we've enjoyed fun play dates with friends that we will be missing soon.
My theme for this summer is-- SIMPLY SUMMER 2011.
I really want to soak in the feeling of summer.
I want my kids to enjoy carefree afternoons with creative play, enjoying the outdoors and spending time with friends and family.
I want to take time to say goodbye to Lubbock, TX. Before we move we hope to take pictures at our favorite places.
And, I hope to get to know Corvallis, OR. I am imagining lazy afternoons at the beach, hikes to beautiful Oregon waterfalls and trips to Portland's zoo or children't museums-- I'm imagining they have them there.
I hope this summer I can really cherish each day, cherish each child, cherish the places that we live and the people that surround us. I want to live in the moments.
And to CHOOSE to be HAPPY.
Even when life is crazy and in boxes.
No matter what the outside looks like, I want to be calm and peaceful on the inside.
To me, Simply Summer means calm and peaceful and full of joy.
Wish me luck!!
Want to read about summer's past??
Here is a fun post on summer chores-- summer ideas- chore charts and NON-consistency
Here is our summer 2010 theme-- for the love of books
Here is our summer 2009 theme-- be a hero
Here is our summer 2008 theme-- doing great things-- inventors and explorers
May 26, 2011
The professor and I just celebrated our anniversary.
We have been married 14 years. 14 years and 7 kids. Wow!
I have been thinking a lot lately about my life the past 14 years. This weekend I flew back to Virginia, where I grew up. I saw my best friend from high school get married. I visited with many of my friends' parents who I hadn't seen since my wedding. Visiting with people who knew me then, I felt just like the young girl I once was. And, I wondered what they saw when they looked at me with my new little baby. How am I different? How am I the same? Everyone was shocked that I have so many kids. It was kind of funny the amazed reactions I got.
At the wedding I wore a knee-length skirt, a white shirt and a cardigan. I had my hair in a pony tail, with a silver clip and a necklace/earring set I bought at Target for $15. I could have worn that same outfit 15 years ago in high school. I'm a bit softer and chubbier these days. I wore high heels instead of penny loafers-- but outside I'm pretty much what I was then. Part of me wishes for a more "grown up" appearance.
I mentally list all the extras that I could have... a tan, muscles from the gym, fake fingernails, a manicure and pedicure, eyelash extensions, a facial (to get rid of the age spot that's forming on my cheek), a new outfit from Talbots or Anne Taylor or JCrew, expensive shoes, a stylish purse, highlights in my hair, a new hairstyle, lipstick, diamond earrings, etc.
If I had the funds I would have loved to show up at the wedding all decked out. And, I could have had all those things. But, I don't. Why? Well, we're in school. If I have extra money I spend it on new shoes for my kids who have feet that grow very fast. I have lots of kids with birthdays and parties they are invited to go to... I buy books instead of shoes. I like to look at other people who are fashionable, but really I'm just classic and predictable and boring. I don't think I'll ever be the stylish icon I sometimes wish I was.
Outside, I'm not so different than I was 14 years ago... but, I've spent the past 14 years working on my inside. If you could see my inside, I have changed a lot.
Having children has changed me. I am more kind, more patient, more empathetic, more selfless. I've learned to love-- the verb kind of love. I've learned to sacrifice.
And, I am so rich.
In Virginia, I only had baby Eve with me. And, she was my treasure. She is so darling. Bright-eyed and beautiful. How blessed I am to have that sweet baby. Really, it didn't matter at all what I was wearing. Because people didn't even look at me-- they looked at my sweet baby. And she is perfect. She smiled and cooed and slept and fussed. She was shining brighter than diamonds. And, she was just ONE.
Every time I told people that she was my seventh baby I wished I had my other kids around me. I wanted them to see Jakob. To see how mature and responsible and good he is. I wanted them to see how hard he works at everything he does and for them to see how good he is with his younger sisters. I wanted them to meet Drew and see how dang cute that kid is. To hear his witty jokes and how he knows so much about so many things. I wanted them to meet sweet, lady like Anna, and bright-eyed, sensitive, creative Ellie. To see Leah sparkling and excited about life, and darling Lily with her cute pigtails and tender mothering ways.
Since I've been home, I have been thinking about the words of Anne Campbell, who wrote as she looked upon her children:
You are the trip I did not take;
You are the pearls I cannot buy;
You are my blue Italian lake;
You are my piece of foreign sky.
(“To My Child,” quoted in Charles L. Wallis, ed., The Treasure Chest , 54)
Todd and I celebrated our anniversary by going out to lunch.
No big trips around the world or expensive gifts.
I was bouncing a fussy baby while we ate and we remembered 11 years ago celebrating our 2nd anniversary in Provo, Utah at China Lily. We had a 3 month old Jakob who was fussy. Todd ate while I bounced the baby outside and then I ate while he bounced the baby. Things aren't that different today.
I have a feeling that much will change in the next 14 years. I have a feeling that I will get my manicures and diamond earrings, if that is what I want. I think we will have more fun vacations and more time for pampering as our kids grow older. But, I know that I will NEVER regret these first 14 years. I won't regret the sacrifices we have made for the great bounty we have been given.
Todd asked me what I felt the highlights were over the past 14 years.
We mentioned our cruise (for our 10th anniversary), and fun times with family and friends.
But really, the highlight of the past 14 years can't be measured in trips or events.
The highlights are moments-- and becoming.
Todd and I have become-- over the past fourteen years.
We work so good together. The highlights were the middle of the night as we rocked a sick baby. Setting time aside for lunch dates to stay connected during his PhD program. 14 years of being intimate-- learning and growing together. 14 years of learning how to be individuals together. We laugh together A LOT. We are both very funny, or at least we think we are!! We're really good at family time and scripture study and budgeting and finding balance in alone and together time. We've learned how to keep house and put our kids to bed without kids coming out of bed all night long. We laugh together and communicate our differences without fighting.
I remember hearing a talk on marriage when we were in college together. I remember the speaker encouraging us to not be so volatile-- fight and make-up all the time. She described this woman that when her wedding dress caught on fire she just said, "Oh well!" and laughed it off. I remember thinking that I could NEVER be like that. And, I am like that. I have learned. Together, Todd and I have learned how to fight nicely, most of the time.
Again, this is a post that wasn't very well thought out... I'm just writing it very fast before I head to the store to buy a birthday gift and then to the school for another award assembly.
But, it is for me.
For me to remember. Yes, I have been married 14 years and I am still a young wife with no money, just graduating from school. Our cars are old and our bank account is similar to what it was. I still have cover girl make up, skirts from goodwill, and fake earrings from Target.
But, I am different. My life is full and good. And, I have a home that is Heavenly. I've worked hard to learn how to be a good wife and mother and homemaker. I'm still learning, but I LOVE the life I am living.
Sometimes I look at others and I yearn for the things I don't have.
I wonder how my life could have been if I was just getting married, or just having my first baby...
But, I think we each have our own journey.
And, this is my journey.
14 years. And honestly, I wouldn't change a thing.
Life is good.
May 22, 2011
May 19, 2011
i'm on my way to virginia to visit with my sister and good friend from high school who is getting married.
it's just me and baby eve
(and all our luggage that we can't check-in unless we're willing to pay an extra $100- dumb)
I'm SOO excited!!
and a little bit nervous...
May 18, 2011
May 17, 2011
May 15, 2011
"When through firey trials thy pathway shall lie, My grace all sufficient shall be thy supply.
(How Firm a Foundation, verse 4)
President Boyd K. Packer said,
"Some are tested by poor health, some by a body that is deformed or homely. Others are tested by handsome and healthy bodies; some by the passion of youth; others by the erosions of age.I love the story from Carlfred Brodrick's book The Uses of Adversity. He tells of a youth night where the theme was the wizard of oz. The YW leaders were teaching, follow the yellow brick road, marry in the temple and you will live happily ever after. They asked Brother Broderick if he had anything to add. He said,
Some suffer disappointment in marriage, family problems; others live in poverty and obscurity. Some (perhaps this is the hardest test) find ease and luxury.
All are part of the test, and there is more equality in this testing than sometimes we suspect"
"Girls, this has been a beautiful program. I commend the gospel with all of it's auxiliaries and the temple to you, but i do not want you to believe for one minute that if you keep all the commandments and live as close to the Lord as you can and do everything right... and have a temple marriage, I do not want you to believe that bad things will not happen to you. And when that happens, I do not want you to say that God was not true. Or to say, 'They promised me in Primary... that if I were very, very good, I would be blessed. ... Sad things-- children who are sick or developmentally handicapped, husbands who are not faithful, illnesses that can cripple, or violence, betrayals, hurts, deaths, losses-- when those things happen, do not say God is not keeping his promises to me.
I LOVE this quote!! I love it. And, I love remembering this principle.
Because I am good, and capable, God lets me have growing experiences.
Because I WANT to be better, He blesses me with a life that helps me to stretch.
When you exercise, and want to increase your strength... you RIP your muscles. And, when those tiny rips heal, your muscles are bigger. Strength comes from stretching.
This has been my favorite poem since I was young...
by Douglas Malloch
The tree that never had to fight
For sun and sky and air and light,
But stood out in the open plain
And always got its share of rain,
Never became a forest king
But lived and died a scrubby thing.
The man who never had to toil
To gain and farm his patch of soil,
Who never had to win his share
Of sun and sky and light and air,
Never became a manly man
But lived and died as he began.
Good timber does not grow with ease:
The stronger wind, the stronger trees;
The further sky, the greater length;
The more the storm, the more the strength.
By sun and cold, by rain and snow,
In trees and men good timbers grow.
Where thickest lies the forest growth,
We find the patriarchs of both.
And they hold counsel with the stars
Whose broken branches show the scars
Of many winds and much of strife.
This is the common law of life.
Today, I don't have many trials.
I just have an excess of blessings. (Hah!)
This is my life, and it is oh so good.
I'm grateful for hard. Because I am becoming. My patience muscles are becoming stronger. My discernment muscles are becoming stronger. My procrastination muscles are shrinking. My laziness muscles are shrinking. My selfish muscles are shrinking.
I am making my happily ever after.
Because I am good, I am blessed.
I am not blessed with easy. But, I am blessed.
Blessed with an understanding that all of life's trials are for my good.
Blessed with moments of joy.
Blessed with moments of accomplishment.
Blessed with the sweet whispering of the Spirit who says at the end of my day, "well done."
Blessed with selflessness, patience, kindness...
Blessed to see things I can improve, and how God is teaching me.
Blessed with greater charity towards those I am trying to love.
Blessed with peace when I see things I can not do.
Blessed with people in my path who teach me.
I'm grateful for hard.
I'm grateful for a Savior who leads me and guides me and walks beside me.
Today, I am happy.
And, I still have to go wrangle my brood into their church clothes and pray they will not get into a fist fight during church...
yup, this is the real happily ever after.
May 13, 2011
May 11, 2011
May 10, 2011
Before this baby was born, if you would have asked me what my "talent" was, I would have told you-- babies.
I do babies.
I'm good at babies.
|giving eve a pacifier in the hospital...|
I'm very good at "baby whispering", I could talk baby talk and my babies are VERY content, happy babies.
But, this baby is giving me a run for my money.
I laughed when I read the definition of colic-- fussing or crying for 3 hours a day, more than 3 days a week... um, try 10 hours a day, every day.
This sweet baby is very rarely content.
CONTENTMENT is the difference between this baby and every other baby I've given birth to.
She's just sad.
Not crying all the time, because I'm pretty good at bouncing and swaddling and distracting her... but, if I slow down for one minute, she's fussy.
She wakes up sad, and she goes to bed sad.
The only time I can lay her down in her bed is if she is in a deep sleep.
She only sleeps if she doesn't hear any loud noises or have any burps or toots.
This baby is a lot of work.
Honestly, babies are still my thing.
And, I can DO a fussy baby.
But, that is ALL I can do.
It is VERY hard for me to do anything besides this baby.
My baby doesn't CRY all the time.
It's not a restful sleep, she's still squirmy and gassy, but she will sleep when I'm holding her.
So, at church or activities, I usually have her fed and resting in my arms.
She seems content.
But people don't realize that I have been HOLDING her for the past 24 hours.
She screams in a sling or carrier or car seat or swing.
She's particularly fussy between 6pm and 1am.
I HATE admitting to people that I'm having a hard time with this baby.
I hate it.
Babies are my thing.
But, I can't not tell the truth.
When people ask me how it's going I try to say "great!" But, I have to add, "She's a fussy little thing and it's hard."
I would pick this trial.
Need an excuse not to fold the laundry, I've got one.
But, I keep thinking I should be better at this by now.
The baby was pretty good, because I fed her before we left and held her when we got there.
(She screamed the whole time in the car so she was pretty tired.)
Leah and Lily missed naps and were pretty fussy.
We got home and then I had to pack everybody into the car again at 3pm to pick the bigger kids up from school.
Poor eve was not so happy in the car the second time either.
By the time I got home, my toddlers were tired and cranky, my baby was over-tired and very fussy AND I told my big kids no TV because we had decided this weekend they were watching too much.
It was CRAZY.
I called him around 5:30pm saying that I just couldn't get dinner on the table.
I HATE admitting defeat.
He came home and cooked dinner.
I comforted the baby and directed the big kids into baths and pj's and bed.
I finally was able to lay the baby down at 11pm and she slept till 3am!!
It was nice. I fed her and she went back to sleep till 6:30 am.
She was up and fussy all morning-- but finally she zonked out around 10 and that's when I took a minute to write this blog.
I can hear her squirming now.
And I still really, really love this little stink.
This is one of those posts that I hate pushing publish post on.
I feel compelled to be REAL, but I wish I could always be ROSY.
May 09, 2011
No more chocolate chip pancakes with ice cream and whipping cream on top...
More family prayer and scripture time.
More purposeful living, less survival mode.
Oh, how I'm going to miss my Snickers milk shakes...
May 08, 2011
"Happiness, Your Heritage"
Elder M. Russel Ballard, "Daughters of God"
Elder M. Russel Ballard, "Daughters of God"
|all my kids (and my husband) wrote me mother's day poems.|
i LOVE them.