Friday, May 15, 2015

Happy 5 Months, Luke!

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Luke Boy!

What a joy he has been these past 5 months!  He is officially rolling over, scooting backwards when he’s on his back, and sleeping for about 8 hours every night.  He raises his little eyebrows when he smiles at me, and it melts my heart every time.  He does pretty good sitting in his bouncer seat while I work in the kitchen, but not for long before he gets the stiff back and tries to scoot out.  His red coloring certainly brings a new feel into our home.  We love it and feel so blessed to have him in our family.

I like how this picture shows our CD player in the background.  Lately when he starts showing me that he’s ready for nap time, I turn on my Calee Reed CD and hold him upright as he looks over my shoulder.  I sway back and forth and stare out the window while I sing along for about 3-4 songs, reflecting on heaven and such, then bam, his whole body goes limp and he's out like a light. Is it even possible for him to have a favorite song?  Maybe not, but if he did it would be "Better Than a Hallelujah” because he starts cooing during that one every time.  

So...thank you, Calee Reed.  My baby seems to really like you, haha!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Rising Together

I used to think of charity as love’s companion:  a giving heart, unconditional acceptance, service, a heart warming story about a person showing an unusual amount of patience or care, taking the higher road, or simply being kind no matter what.  

But as a wife and mother I’ve been learning that charity is much much more.

I see it every day in my husband's willingness to leave for work at 6:30 am to provide for our family.  I see it in my daughters as they forgive each other time & time again (after little tiffs that happen daily)!  I see it in my 2 year old son's excitement to show his little brother every single one of his dinosaurs…and I see it in my baby’s smile, especially the ones when his whole body gets into it!

I’ve also experienced charity as a recipient of little acts of love on days when I needed them most.  Often times it’s the little things that make the biggest difference...texts/phone calls/messages of love and encouragement.  Charity does not assume the worst in someone and react accordingly nor assume evil motives when there are none.  I am so grateful to those individuals and family members who have consistently helped, lifted, and rejoiced with me in my effort to become my very best self.  

“True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior”  (Boyd K. Packer).  I am so grateful for the enduring power of charity…that we can better ourselves as we lift each other and rise together.  

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Friday, May 1, 2015

Seven (but almost eight)

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Miss AM is growing up too fast, and oh, how I love watching her mature into a beautiful young lady…so full of ideas all the time, wanting to start a new club every month, lover of books and magical tales that “aren’t totally true, but still really really good!!  I just love it so much!” (as she’s jumping up and down 100 mph)!  

And so curious lately about money and jobs and how much things cost.  My goodness, she anticipates doing those money jobs every Saturday just so she can plan out what to spend her spending money on.   

She loves jump-roping and bike riding and “chasing Carlie around” and baking…yessiree, this girl loves to bake.  And I can’t forget all the note taking (her latest thing as part of the Spy Club she started last week.  Everyone is AIT - agent in training - so better beware) and journal writing, letter writing…ANY type of writing!  Just hook her up with a pen and a diary and this girl is good for hours.   

I could go on and on, but what I love most about AM is her innate ability to be happy for others’ successes.  I truly believe that it’s literally in her DNA to KNOW that if you are happy for other people, you simply get to be happy more often!!  She steps into the sun with the understanding that there is enough sunshine for everyone, and I couldn’t be more thrilled.  Let’s hope it lasts!  In a world that’s full of self glorification, cheering for others’ successes is powerful, and it’s one of the most valuable lessons I think she can learn.

I’ve learned a lot from her example, and once again recommitted to “become as little children.” 

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Pre-Spring Break

Let’s talk about my extended spring break for a minute.


I drove to Idaho with my four kids, and basically, let me just say that driving eight hours with four kiddos age seven and under with no other adult supervision in the vehicle besides the driver is not highly recommended.  Trust me.  Sometimes in life though, you just gotta do things that aren’t recommended, and for me, this was one of those times for a lot of reasons.

But I got creative (like we stayed in a hotel half way through the drive type of creative).  And there were tears.  And plenty of screaming fits.  And lots of potty breaks on the side of the road.  I really hate to even mention that last one, but seriously.  My two year old…it’s like every 20 minutes these days.    

(I can’t get enough of the above picture of baby Luke.)  His skin is silky smooth and fair.  I’m blessed to be able to kiss on his cute cheeks all day.  He smiles, but it’s usually with one corner of his mouth.  He sure enjoyed snuggling his many grandmas in Idaho. 

But first, let’s back up.  So the week before spring break, all six of us drove to Logan, Utah and back in a three day period. Now THAT was a road trip and a half.  

One of our dear lifelong friends got married, and we couldn’t miss the celebration.  He even had a flash mob wedding dance prepared for his bride that threw everyone for a loop.  It was pretty funny.

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We were able to meet up with my mom and the newlyweds (my brother Nate & sweet Emmy) in Salt Lake City.  My mom had just flown into the SLC Airport, returning from a two week trip to Cambodia, Vietnam, and surrounding areas as part of an LDS tour group.  

She was showing us her many souvenirs in this picture, and boy, did she come back with some amazing pictures and stories.    

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Anyway, we drove straight back home from SLC that very day.  Fast and furious, but definitely worth it.  

And that was our little pre-spring break adventure.  I’ll be back soon.  

The End. 


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Acquaintance with Grief

In my acquaintance with grief I have diligently strived to be prayerful and observant.  In the process I have come to recognize that even the most mundane aspects of my life have been falling into place...'like a beautifully orchestrated symphony of necessary events under heavenly direction.' 

I believe grief is meant to awaken our souls to reality.  We are much more than just mortals, and it’s necessary to KNOW that (not just believe it) at some point in our journey.  Life through an eternal lens takes on new meaning and purpose. 

If I truly believe in Christ, then come what may!  Death cannot kill what never dies.  Easter Sunday was a true celebration of this very truth.

"Sometimes in our sorrow we are tempted to feel alone or forsaken, but looking back, we recognize we were never really alone…nor were we forsaken.  I believe that in our grief we are meant to feel alone in order that we might humble ourselves to talk to God and seek an understanding that defies mortal senses.” - Chris Jones