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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Hope and Courage

I am months behind on this but honestly who cares.  It's really just my journal and it doesn't matter if I miss a few months here and there....right?  
Over the last 6 months I've been trying to find a place for myself doing something that mattered.  When conference came around I was seeking answers or I guess you could say I was seeking peace and confirmation of what I was doing.  I found it in a few talks.  I'm going to share the links because they were truly amazing.  
After every conference I have fully intended to sit down and study the talks and every time I find myself forgetting.  Just a couple weeks ago I was up alone getting ready before school and I had the thought to start listening to them.  So every morning while I'm getting ready, I listen.  It turns out that it's probably just as effective as sitting down with a paper copy because I find myself remembering the messages throughout the day and when someone is struggling I think first of their words.  The morning is the best time too, because I'm fully awake and my mind is ready to listen. Three of the talks given have brought me the peace and comfort I needed and I hope that as I continue to listen that I will receive more guidance in choices to come.    
This conference was a turning point for us.  I usually buy Audrey a sticker book and I let her do stickers while we listen; usually it's counter productive because she wants me to do it with her.  This time I decided to pull out the bingo board and surprisingly she listened to every talk.  I know I won't always have beautiful peaceful conference weekends, but I was so grateful for this one because I needed it.  
So without further ado......here is the peace and comfort you might be looking for.  Go ahead a give them a listen....you know you want to!













Sunday, September 24, 2017

What do you wish with a bump on your head?

Someone turned 6.  I think this was the hardest month of my year.  Having Audrey's birthday and having her start school in the same week was a little difficult for me.  I was battling a lot emotionally and I didn't want her to know.  I wanted her to be brave and excited to go to school.  I didn't want my uncertainty to be hers.  I also wanted her birthday to be special even though it was a busy week for us both.  I had this grand party planned and I started to get really overwhelmed with pulling it all off.  I feel like I was trying to keep myself busy in effort to keep my mind off of the impending changes in my life.  Lisa came to my rescue and gave me some simple ideas and I'm grateful I listened.  
Her birthday was on Friday...the second day of school.  She came out of school and I had balloons for her. Then we came home and I had cupcakes waiting and decorations hung.  I thought it was so cute when she did a little happy dance when she walked in the door.  She loves birthdays...it doesn't matter who's it is. Any excuse to decorate and have cupcakes. :)  After dinner we sat down and she opened up her gifts.  I loved watching her excitement over the smallest things.  Her favorite were the pens.  There hasn't been a day since her birthday that she hasn't pulled them out.  Her favorite thing is to draw, write, and make books.  She has made more than I can count.  I'll eventually have to take pictures of them all and make a book of her books.  
I love that she loves something that keeps her learning.  Sometimes I have thoughts of her being a great writer, other times a singer, and sometimes an artist.  I really don't mind what she chooses, I just love watching her explore all the things that she loves.  
The next day we threw her a friend party.  It was simple like I mentioned.  I let them make their own cupcakes from a box and then they got to decorate them.  We sang the very merry un-birthday song and  had a tea party with their cupcakes.  We also pinned the smile on the Cheshire cat and opened gifts.  I had so much more planned but it was nice to simplify.  As it was I was running around like crazy.  I was lucky that Audrey had made what she considered a really good friend after being at school for two days.  She loved him so much that she insisted that she invite him to her party.  I was apprehensive, but I gave her an invitation to give him along with a note from me.  I didn't want his Mom to feel like she had to bring him.  After all, she knew nothing about me.  To my surprise she called me and said she would love to bring him.  Audrey was so excited.  Lily arrived with her son and asked if she could stay.  I was more than willing to let her.  I would have wanted the same thing. 
She knew nothing about me but helped me the entire time.  I don't know what I would have done without her.  Since then we've become friends and I owe it all to Audrey.  
The party was a success and one Audrey will remember for a while I'm sure.
I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this girl.  I find myself missing her while she's at school, but I love that she's growing in new ways.  It helps that she's not shy about telling me every detail about her day.  Happy Birthday little one!  I can't believe you're one more year older.    






 




 







Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Finding a New Purpose

My little one,

You're not so little anymore.  I think the hardest and best part of being your Mom is watching you grow.  We waited so long for you.  It was so hard.  I began to wonder if I would ever have a child of my own and then you surprised us.  Finding out that I was pregnant was our Christmas miracle.
You have grown so fast and I have tried to live in every moment.
I let you go off to school.  You were so excited.  I begged you to stay home, but you were ready.  I was sleepless and having panic attacks.  I sobbed almost nightly for a month.  I feel like you just came into my life and now I have to send you off to be with someone else most of the day.  It's hard and everyday I wonder if I'm going the right thing.  After Daddy gave you a blessing this morning I had a thought come to my mind.  I have had so many experiences over the last few years that have helped me grow closer to the Savior.  To list a few: going to Texas and being away from my family, making new friends, being in church congregations that were struggling, and helping people who had little to nothing, taking care of a little girl who needed a family and then having to give her up after falling in love with her, moving to Montana, and then finding new friends again.  These are things that have helped me to learn love, find faith, and doubt my doubts.  Why would I ever keep you from experiencing these things yourself.
In Daddy's blessing you were told that you have a strong spirit and that you will be able to be a good example.  There are kids in your school that don't have what you have and it's my hope that while you are there you will learn to love all of them the way Jesus would.
I know that Heavenly Father loves me and that he loves you.  He is guiding our lives and he is very aware of us.  It's a good thing we are in this together.  Change is good, even though it's hard.
I love you snuggle bug!

Love,

Your Mom




Tuesday, September 12, 2017

The Other Half

This actually happened y'all.  I got visitors from my side of the family....and they were super cute to boot.  It was so good to have Michael's family here.  It does my heart good to spend more time with him.  There was a time about 10 years ago when he was my other half.  We did everything together and I think we told each other everything.  I'll never complain about being born between the only two boys in the family because they are truly my best friends.  I love their stinking guts!
It's been a long time since I've actually sat down with Michael and talked like we used.  To start off with he saved me from a terrible migraine with a late night visit to Taco Bell.  It was quite the scene.  For the first time in my life I was begging for Caffeine at a fast food window and the guy there didn't have any Coke.  I settled for a blue Mountain Dew...which was gross, but so worth it when my going on 3 day migraine vanished.  It was magic!
The next day we went to church together, watch church shows, played play-doh, and sailed pieces of plastic down the irrigation ditch.  The kids had such a good time together. Wyatt became my buddy and I had the pleasure of fixing Colten's stuffed animal. What can I say...I'm trying to earn favorite Aunt status here.  I'll have to work on the girls next time...they like their parents a little too much.  :)   Audrey was so sad when her six little friends went home.  It really was too short.  We miss them.  Thank you Mike and Chrissy for the late night talks and sharing your babies with me.  I love your guts! 













Monday, September 11, 2017

Family Reunion

Reunions are the best, especially when you can come together in a place like this.  Sometimes I look around at all of us and I think...how did this happen?  I still remember Michael, Phillip, and myself hog tying each other.  I remember playing baseball and football out back, switching chores with my brothers because I hating vacuuming the stairs, riding on the backs of dirt bikes out in the orchard, playing in the irrigation ditches, and walking to the fruit stand for surprise bags or penny candy.  I remember rollerblading for hours, eating unripened apples off of the nearby orchard trees, planting flowers with Mom, watching movies with the whole family, singing karaoke, and snowball fights.  I remember riding our go-cart and using a stick as a brake, declaring many bum wars on the trampoline, and playing volleyball as a family.  I could go on and on and on.  
Now we are all grown up and married.  It's kind of crazy.  I don't know if anyone else feels this way but sometimes I feel like I'm playing house.  Some times I feel like I'm not really a Mom and I'm not really married...I'm just playing a really fun game.  
Now that the wrinkles are showing I have finally come to realize that this is all for real and I try not to blink because I don't want to miss a thing.  I miss these people so much when I'm away and when we get together it's just like old times.  Watching my siblings kids grow and watching them grow as parents and individuals is one of the most beautiful things.  I have sisters that just seem to sense when to call and what to say when they do.  I have brothers that face time on Sunday's and show up out of the blue to give me much needed love and laughter.  
My parents should be thanked a thousand times over because they did an amazing job as parents.  The funny thing to me is that I feel like I need them more and more the older I get.  I don't know a thing about this adult stuff and sometimes it can get pretty daunting.  It's a good thing I have them and a whole lot of brothers and sisters when I need someone to talk to.  
I love coming together for reunions.  I love trying to get my nieces and nephews to love me.  I don't live close so it's a harder task than it may seem.  I love riding horses with the kids and fishing with Audrey.  I love coming together for meals and games at night.  I love siting around talking about our day to day, shooting guns, paddle boarding down the river, and watching people swim in the pond...maybe next year I'll brave the water.  
Mostly I just love this family of mine and I wish it could have lasted longer.  Next time I hope to get more pictures of the adults doing things.  I'm inclined to take pictures of kids because it's so easy, but I'd like to preserve more memories of my siblings and their spouses being together.  
This year we missed Phillip and Dad.  They were working, but I was so so happy that I got to pick Dad up from the airport and have dinner with him.  It was good to see him if only for a little while. Until next time....I love all of you!