Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sammy's prayers

Sammy's prayers have gotten very long lately.  He goes on and on about things that he wants to do or has done that day.  But my favorite comment in the last couple of days is that he wants to be "big and strong just like mommy".  It's pretty awesome. 

Evelyn has started clapping too.  I had been trying to get her to clap for me for a couple of weeks... and nothing.  But Jer comes home and ta-da!  Now she's a clapping machine.  She's so serious about it too.  She looks at her hands to make sure that she's doing it right.  And she watches everyone else to make sure that they're all clapping too.  She'll also start trying to clap while she's standing up, realize that it won't work, carefully sit down, and then start clapping.  Too cute.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Jr Olympics

Just one more note from this week... We've had a lot happen... my brother and his wife and twins moved up North, over an hour away.  At least we can visit a few times more often than Texas and he got a great job that will provide for him and his growing family, but we'll miss him.  We all got over being sick, except baby... we went to our exciting fencing class... that went from 6 registered members to two because of people moving away.  So we had Marion, Sammy and Dani "join" us.  They're technically too young for the class but they enjoy warming up with us and running around before and after.  The only time that it gets tougher is during the bouts... Ada and Reed are used to fencing each other... they need others to really progress.  This week was trying to get back into the Spring Cleaning that I started before we all got sick.  That's been more difficult than I thought it would be but I'm finally at a point to really keep going.  Then on Friday we got a visit from Diane and her kids... always enjoy that!... and we got to go to the Jr Olympics up in SLC.  It was so fun to watch!  We just said that we'd go on Friday night but low and behold... the event going on was the Foil final 4 and the final bout for the gold.... My Favorite!  I'll just say this for all the competitive people out there... If you want to fight hard to win.. great... but please don't fight the ref, and please don't let your parents yell at the ref... and I know you're upset to get silver instead of gold... but honestly... you got silver.  Isn't that enough?  The kids were really good.  Ada showed me how to "walk like a fencer".  Jer and I got some new equipment from the vendors up there.  Sammy wore underwear the whole time and technically stayed dry... I took him to go to the bathroom and because it's not a potty seat or anything like that he accidentally peed out onto the floor and on his pants even though he was sitting "peeing in the potty".  Oh the joys of teaching a boy to pee.  I cleaned up the floor and toilet, got his pants all wrapped up in paper towels and put his boots back on.  I will have to admit it was my favorite sight of the day... Sammy, wearing tighty-whity's... a shirt... and big ole boots with his skinny little legs.  And he decided to run back to daddy, not walk... so here's his little butt wagging along.  Too cute.  But don't tell him that.  Saturday I went to Courtney's bridal shower (we're glad you're joining our family!) with Sharon, shopping with Carmen, and to Robyn's 31st birthday party... Happy Birthday Robyn!  That's when Ada started throwing up... sorry Jer that you had to do that while I was gone.  And sorry Judy that we missed the Valentine's Day party because of it... sorry Diane if your kids get the flu... I thought we were done!  Sorry McKay and Sophie that we didn't make it out to IKEA to play... and sorry Carmen that we didn't get to make Ceviche.  Wow... being sick really changes our plans doesn't it.  At least Jer and I aren't sick this time too.  That was exciting.

And Yet Again

And here we are again.  Ada was throwing up again and Evelyn is on antibiotics... so we missed church again.  I'm starting to feel uncomfortable for how many Sundays we've missed in a row.  Maybe I can start praying for the kids to be sick in the middle of the week instead of on Saturday/Sunday... because obviously they're going to keep getting sick... we already prayed for that one. So here was my Sunday study for today and a few thoughts from this week.

"What favorite sins, large or small, are you willing to give away - right now, today - in order to increase your access to the power of God?  If you want to be sanctified, repentance is not optional."

"In contrast to sin, which is ugly and costly, obedience is brilliant and its fruits are endless, one of which is happiness. The only way to be happy is to live the gospel.

It is not possible to sin enough to be happy.  It is not possible to buy enough to be happy, or to entertain or indulge ourselves enough to be happy.  Happiness and joy come only when we are living up to who we are.  King Benjamin clearly understood this when he admonished us to "consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God.  For... they are blessed in all things, ... and if they hold out faithful to the end... they may dwell with God in a state of never ending happiness" (Mosiah 2:41)."




And just a few of my own thoughts....  sorry, it's a mind dump and I honestly won't be offended if you don't read it.  Mostly it's about things that I've been thinking about from my Sunday reading today and several different conversations that I've had with people through out the week.

Growing up I always knew what I wanted.  I wanted to grow up, go to college, get married and have a family.  Great. It's easy to make a few written or thought out goals but it's a little harder to accomplish what you want... especially without the help of the Lord. 

First, I wanted to grow up... I was going to grow up no matter what, but Heavenly Father blessed me to grow up in a family that loved me and with parents that taught me how to become a righteous woman in the Lord.  (Still working on that one, but they showed me where to start.) 

Second, go to college.  Why?  I was planning on being a stay at home mom, so why would I want this one?  I love to learn, that's why.  I love to listen to the history lessons, and sit in on sculpting classes.  It makes me happy to learn.  You don't have to have a college degree to learn, but in my case it worked out perfectly.  Heavenly Father knew it was important to me and He timed my life to perfection. 

Third, get married.  In a culture (yes, Utah county is a culture) where it's very common for a girl to get married between the ages of 18-21 I didn't think that I would get married.  I didn't think that I would ever.  I was never thin, pretty, etc... I only went on a few dates and most of those were with friends not "friends".  But a couple of things in my life contributed to the end result of this goal... I was not expecting it to fall into my lap.  I knew that I wanted a husband, but didn't really think of the kind of husband that I wanted.  (this wasn't a turning point but one example of the preparation that I recieved)  We had a family move into our ward when we were teens, they were very poor and needed quite a bit of help from the people around them.  My dad said something to the effect of, "I wouldn't mind if one of our daughters married their boys."  Not only were they poor, but they had given up everything... their whole life... for the gospel and their faith in God.  None of our sisters even dated their boys, but it did show me that what you want in a spouse is spiritual love of God and faith to do hard things not the comfort of knowing that you'll always be materially taken care of.  (not that I don't appreciate that ability in a spouse).  And I continued to live my life as best as I could making mistakes, learning, growing and trying to be more righteous in the gospel.  I got to the age of 21 and knew that it was time that prayed about serving a mission for the LDS church.  That wasn't in my plan.  I was terrified of putting my testimony in front of other people that could reject what I believed.  My parents didn't force me to go or even to pray about it... I chose to.  I prayed to know if I should be a missionary.  The warmth of the Holy Ghost let me know that, "Yes, this is what you should do."  I was disappointed, nervous, but I've not followed the promptings of the Holy Ghost before and been left empty when I didn't, so I decided to go.  I knew that there was a possibility of serving a foreign speaking mission.  I was okay with that, but I'd just spent 5 years of my life trying to learn Spanish.  I felt like I didn't really have a great grip on the language.  But I'd also spent the last 5 years learning American Sign Language and was invited to be part of our High School "immersion" program. (Was part of the ASL culture and took classes with the 10 deaf students that were at our school.)  I really enjoyed it and thought that I could teach about Christ in ASL.  So I prayed again.  I told God that I would serve a mission like He'd asked, but I asked Him if I could do anything but Spanish speaking.  I never felt an answer to that prayer.  I went ahead and prepared my mission papers, received my call and waited "patiently" to open it when my mom got back from a business trip.  I opened them and started crying.  I was going to Guayaquil, Ecuador.  But I didn't cry from disappointment, I cried because even the name felt like home in my heart.  That was were I was supposed to be.  It wasn't easy to be a missionary, but I learned more about my testimony while I was there... I always believed the things that I taught, but I learned more clearly about them as I taught.  I felt the overwhelming love of God as I taught about His appearance in these days.  I learned to appreciate the temple from members that were "so lucky to have a temple and temple blessings so close to them."  (They lived 4 hours by bus and it cost at least a weeks pay to get you and your spouse there and back.)  I learned to see people for who they are and not for what situation they live in.  And suprisingly... I didn't have a problem with the language.  I spoke well, taught well, and loved it.  And I feel that my mission prepared me to be more attractive and more competent as a spouse and mother.  When I got home, I wanted to have an eternal marriage but I didn't expect it to happen to me.  I just tried hard to keep living... and because I kept going... it happened to me.  Can I believe that someone found me?  Sometimes I can't believe it, but I am grateful to him for seeing me as a daughter of God and not for anything else, and to Heavenly Father for picking my match so perfectly. 

And fourthly, it wasn't easy having kids.  Luckly our infertility was a pretty easy fix... but the brief uncertainty taught me love.  I have so many friends that are struggling with this right now.  I know the pain of thinking that you'll never have your own child.  The nights praying and crying and finally the joy of holding your babies in your arms and knowing that it's your responsibility to teach them, lead them, and love them.  It's a hard responsibility and honestly there are lots of little things that you can do to prepare to have children... but it doesn't compare even slightly to having the child.  The nights of joy when they have done something great... the nights wondering what to do to change a bad behavior... (and my oldest is only 4... just imagine the great teenage years in front of us...) having to change yourself from "social butterfly/ working team manager/ traveller" to Mom.  It's a difficult switch, but one that is soooo necessary to make in order to enjoy motherhood!  And I do enjoy it.  I'm not perfect at it, but I'm beginning to appreciate the job that God gave me by making me a mother.  Hopefully by learning more about that job I will also have a greater desire to be a better mother every day... that doesn't mean that I have to make all my kids "homemade meals" to take to school with them or press all their shirts for them.  But it does mean that I love them, I teach them to love themselves, I teach them to love others, and most especially it is my job to teach them to love God and to be patient with themselves while they are learning to have faith in Him. 

I am grateful that God gave me everything that I wanted from life.  It hasn't happened "as planned" but He has helped me know that life is more than I wanted it to be and that when He has plans for me my life is better than if I have plans for me.  If your plans haven't turned out yet or if you feel like it won't happen to you, trust God, keep going... if it's a righteous desire then it will happen.  Love you all.  Happy Sunday.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Evelyn

So not only is she waving at everyone now, but she's started to stand without holding on to things and push our little push toys around the carpeted floors.  It's really cute and it makes me realize that she's not a baby anymore!  I took her to the doctor the other day because she's had a fever that hasn't gotten better... she has two teeth coming in so I figured it was probably from that.  But, the doctor says she has a sinus infection, an ear infection and her lungs are congested... nice.  That kind of shows you how calm she is.  She just plays and waves.  Practices standing up and squating down.  Sleeps more than usual, but not vocal about it.  Speaking of vocal.  She might (?) have said Mama the other day.  It's hard to tell because she doesn't vocalize a whole lot but it seemed really deliberate.  She crawled up to me, climbed my leg to let me know she wanted me to pick her up, then she said, "Mama." and snuggled up to me.  If so... melt my heart... if not... soon.

Sammy is still doing well with his potty training... he has about 1 accident a day... but for 4 days of training that's not bad.  His motivation?  If he pees or poops in the potty I let him play his choice of a computer game, a wii game, a game on my phone, or choose between chocolate chips or fruit snacks...   He's doind it, the question will be if he'll keep doing it when we start not "rewarding" the same way. 

Ada on the other hand is having a hard time with it.  I let her play or snack with Sam but for some reason she "needs" me more... she wants me to dress her and she wants me to play ponies with her all the time.  I think she's just trying to reassure herself that I love her just as much as Sam. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Hopefully optomistic? Maybe?

So Happy Valentines Day all...

And I have one of the best Valentines Days ever.... all those that have never potty trained a 2 year old might not think so... but Sammy, who we officially started potty training yesterday has gone all morning without any accidents... can I be hopeful that maybe his potty training won't be the terrible ordeal that I was thinking it might be?  Or maybe he's just giving me a good Valentines' Day gift.  Either way, thanks Sam!

Monday, February 13, 2012

A way to make Sammy eat?

So... Sammy has been on this thing.  No matter what is for dinner... he won't eat it.  Until we all got the flu and we boght some single serve mac and cheese.  He had so much fun making his own mac and cheese that now that's what he asks for every meal (no, we don't give it to him for every meal)... but ANYTIME he makes it, he eats it.  So maybe what I need to do is have him help me make dinner in the evenings.  Grrr... as much as that might help, I'm not really enthusiastic about it.  I don't enjoy cooking and I enjoy it less when I have a 2 year old, 4 year old and 8 month old helping... I usually have the 8 month old by my feet or in my arm while I cook... and making cookies with the other two is fun for them and not so much for me.  Is it worth it to get him to eat?  Maybe I'll try and see what happens?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Another Sunday

This time Ada is throwing up... and Jer was giving the lesson in Sunday School, so here I am again.  When I'm not able to go to church I try to make an extra effort at reading and studying the gospel.  Currently I'm reading the Sherri Dew book 'No One Can Take Your Place'.  While it's not a replacement study of the scriptures, I've really enjoyed reading it.  (Another one that I have to plug for is 'The Continuous Atonement' by Brad Wilcox.  Amazing.)  Here are a couple of the quotes that have struck me...

"... the last days are not for the faint of heart of the spiritually out-of-shape.  There will be days when we feel defeated, exhausted, and plain old beat up by life's whiplash.  People we love will disappoint us -- and we will disappoint them.  We'll probably struggle with some kind of mortal appetite.  Some days it will feel as though the veil betwee heaven and earth is made of reinforced concrete.  And we may even face a crisis of faith.  In fact, we can count on trials that test our testimony and our faith." 

"... Men and women have complementary, not competing, responsibilities.  There is difference but not inequity..."

"Motherhood is more than bearing children, though it is certainly and definitely that.  It is the essence of who we are as women.  Motherhood defines our very identity, our divine stature and nature, and the unique traits, talents, and tendencies our Father gave us... 'God planted within women something divine'...a sacred trust that gave woman an unparralleled role in helping His children keep their second estate." 

"Some mothers experience pain because of the children they have borne; others feel pain because they do not have the privilege of bearing children here in mortality."

"Every time we exercise our faith in the face of fear or discover a doctrinal insight in the scriptures or the temple, we are better able to build the kingdom of God.  Every time we discard a sin or a self-serving motive, every time we keep a trust or gain another glimpse of who we really are or speak truth, we are better able to build the kingdom of God.  Every time we help someone else strengthen faith or resolve, we build the kingdom of God.  In short, every small step we take to develop our God-given attributes of faith, knowledge, obedience, purity, integrity, identity, and courage makes us better able to build up the kingdom of God."

"None of us come to this earth to gain our worth; we brought it with us."

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Valentines prep

No, I'm not very talented at a lot of things but I'm pretty proud of myself for this one. We were making valentines day cards to send out to family and I asked the kids what they wanted me to make for them... Sammy of course said, "Angry Birds." (Ada wants a unicorn one...) so I grabbed some paper and my quickutz tool and this is what I ended up with for Sam... haven't figured out how to make Ada's yet though. 

Forgot one

I forgot one.... Ada has been able to count to 20 for a long time and she's figured out how to add 1's to the 20,30, 40 numbers.... but I didn't realize that she's started counting in 10's.  I heard her on the piano the other day.  She'd play a note and say 10, the next note 20, the next note 30, etc... I think she got confused on seventy... I don't remember, but it was dang cute.

Product Review and more

So, Ada LOVES to learn.... but she's going to be another two years for kindergarten because she's going to miss the deadline.  Not the end of the world but she's bored.  We did a Joy school which she loved, and then the new baby came and I really didn't want to sign up for something until I got a schedule down.  But we signed up for an online preschool.  It's AMAZING!  We've done the free ones before like starfall.com... which my kids still love, but it's mostly reading and math.  But the one that we're doing now is www.abcmouse.com .  And it's pretty cheap too.  $100 for 2 years for up to 3 kids.  Since we only have 2 kids it's about $50/year/kid... Which is about $4 dollars a month per child.  You pay more than that to go to the aquarium, etc... Both my kids love it.  Ada's been learning letter recognition and math better and "reading" books.  Sammy has been matching shapes and colors.  It's my favorite one so far because it has tons of different activities and lots of subjects.  It has math, reading, art, music, science, and geography.  It also has a reading path that your kid can follow.  If you don't want them to do the lessons then they can just play the games.  Ada does the lessons (she asks if she can do her lessons) and Sammy mostly does puzzles and games but will occasionally do a lesson as well.  They get points and can buy things at the virtual store for their virtual room... at this point has mostly pets and Sammy has bought multiple beds.  The have 6 years worth of lessons.  I think it will take Sammy a good few years to go through all the lessons, but he is starting at two and already knows how to find his way around the website and knows where his favorites are.  Ada gets so excited about the lessons that she's halfway through a year in about 2 months.  It will probably slow down soon, but I'm glad that they're enjoying it.  At first I needed to help them, but now I just set them on the computer and they do it all themselves. 

On a side note, every time Sam sees a letter S anywhere he says, "Mom!  A-M 'SAM'!" 

And Ada has been telling me "time".  She says things like, "Mom, it's 59 o'clock on the hour." or "It's 52 seconds o'clock."  Maybe I should actually teach her, but it's just too cute.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Stand corrected

I got Ada to talk to Daddy about not liking boys... she said, "I don't like boys, but I REALLY don't like handsome." That must mean that daddy is handsome??  Then she gave him a big hug.  I guess if she doesn't 'like' him then at least she loves him :)

And Daddy you're out of luck

Sorry Daddy.  Ada informed me, and asked that I tell you that she doesn't like boys.  I said what about Devin.  "No, he's a boy."  What about Daddy?  "No, he's a boy.  Will you tell him for me?"

This one's for you Devin

As I type, Ada's in the bathroom singing, "I am ironman... doodoodooodoodoodoodoodooodoodah."

Dang it... missed

So... we've been pretty lucky.  Our kids haven't been sick for a while.  But we missed church today because:

1. Ada's got a very phlemy cough
2. Sammy threw up as Jer brought him in from the car last night. (Sorry Diane... he hasn't shown that he's sick... hope it was a fluke)
3. While at our game night last night Evelyn put both her hands on the front of the glass on their gas fireplace.  She's acting okay, but we decided to let her sleep as much as she could.  She already has a big blister one her one hand and the other one is pink... we didn't want to make her any grumpier by waking her up before she was ready. 

So instead of our usual 3 hours spent in church.... Ada took a 1 1/2 hour nap with me.  Evelyn has taken an almost 3 hour nap where her naps are usually 1... and Sammy has been wandering the house asking when he can play on the computer... (we don't play computer games or Wii games on Sunday)  Over all, I think that they needed it and Jer and I took advantage of it while we could.  But now Jer's off to do the tithing count... and it's fast Sunday so he might be a while.  Maybe it's good that he got a nap it too.  Sorry Mom, I don't think we're going to come out and say hi today.

Maybe it was just our turn for sickies.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Sayings

So... some recent snippets of my talking children:

Ada - 
"Mommy, this is the mommy pony (a pink one) and this is the daddy (a purple one) and these are their babes."  (not babies... just babes... I think it's because both me and my mom say things like, "Hey babe.")
She was "capturing and saving" her little ponies again... and at one point I heard her surprise the baby pony by saying "Boo!" and a little while later the baby said, "Dang it!"

Sammy - "But I don't want to be a pill."  (I was mad at him and said, "Sam, stop being a pill.")
Sammy has discovered a love of the Wii... especially the Wii Sports Resort.  But it's started spilling over into other parts of his life.  For example: If the movie is left on the menu, instead of saying "Press play."... he says, "Mommy!  Press A."  Because that's what you do to get to the next screen on the Wii.
On a side note....
Evelyn is as wiggly as ever... she stands up to things and will smile at me from her crib while she's proudly hanging on the edge... and crawls to the bathroom every chance that she can get so that she can peep over the edge of the tub and look at the toys in there.  The other day I saw her going to the bathroom and I said, "Evelyn, no." and she just looked at me and shook her head with the biggest grin on her face. 

Sam and Jer have been doing the NAET treaments... Sam had his ultimate last one today I hope... We had to take him back because he had that anaphlactic reaction to lentil soup... And Jer's going because his throat closes smaller when he eats things he's allergic too... (told to us by an emergency room doctor)... we just didn't know what he was allergic to.  We'll see if it helps.

We went to the new Muppet movie last night!  I was in heaven.  I absolutely loved the muppets for years... and this one is the best of them all!  Definitely recommend it. 

And all you fencers out there.... the junior olympics is in Salt Lake this year.  It's worth a try.