Sunday, February 27, 2011

Heavenly

As of 2 days ago,
I had it planned out that we would be juggling 5 games again yesterday.
My mind was churning about the timing of all the events.
And then a few "Oh by the ways..." were added:
A double header brought the game count to 6.
It was our week to clean the church.
I heard about a last minute merit badge clinic.
A birthday party.
And we needed to turn in the pinewood derby car.

Late Friday night,
after finishing lots of chores,
Dan wrote it all down by timeline,
calculated out the food and ride arrangements,
and set his alarm for 4am.
(We wanted to squeeze in a trip to the temple.)

I had originally planned to be together at all those things on Saturday,
but that would have meant leaving some of the littles for a long time.
That isn't right,
so we did lots of divide and conquering.
Colin and Dan had a peaceful early morning in my favorite place.
It must have been a good experience for Colin,
because it sparked a few questions and a meaningful conversation.
It's always worth missing a little sleep to serve in the temple.

I spent the early morning hours getting the munchkins ready for the day.
Friday's Laundrymat Date didn't happen and gathering uniforms was a challenge.
It all came together in the form of several packed bags,
that were picked up and dropped off all day long.
Dan and I passed each other on the soccer field once,
but because we live close to the games,
we could meet at home for breakfast, lunch and exchanges of children.
We even managed a sideline date alone during nap time.

Last night,
at the very end of the day,
he asked if I ever imagined our life would be like this.
It would be hard to picture in any one's mind.
Sometimes, mine does not comprehend the logistics.

Football will add a new element of commitment for us,
and it will complicate scouting.
I had a talk with a friend yesterday.
We were trying to figure out how to accomplish everything with our sons.
Scouting takes dedication.
Football takes dedication.
She said she has only ever seen it one way:
You are either committed to scouts,
OR
You are committed to football.
Football coaches do not seem to care that scouts is always on Wednesday nights.
If the boys miss practice,
they will be side-lined.

I told my friend that we have very capable, scouting kinds of dads,
and we will do both...well.
We can set aside some time with all these boys to work on scouts.
There will be a way we can handle all these activities,
if we are willing to work for it.

To me, dropping one commitment for the other is like saying,
"I can only love one child at a time."
It must be my personality,
because I honestly believe that we can do more,
work more,
play more,
accomplish more,
share more,
serve more,
love more.

There is a way.

I will admit,
we were really happy and exhausted when we crawled into bed last night.
Sunday sounds heavenly.

As an update:
We are still in the middle of potty training.
Some days are good.
Some...not so much.
Cade is awesome at making it through the night.

Maryn is learning new words.
For the past 2 days, it's been, "Ewwwww."

Corbin was fun to have with us yesterday.
In the middle of this really serious football meeting at the park,
he walked up holding the remains of a huge chunk of ice.
Thanks, son.
We were trying not to laugh,
and he was feeling so proud.

Presley played with some fire yesterday in her game.
She has been an angel this week.
She did lots of chores for her brothers and sisters,
and brought a real spirit of peace.

Reagan learned some valuable lessons about organization,
and the cause and effect theory for finishing chores.
She's a good friend and a great student,
and keeps a really busy schedule that she loves.
She will manage to pull it all off.

Caleb finished a great season of basketball,
and he was number 1 for completing chores this week.
It resulted in some fun play time for him.
Thank you for trying to make a difference.

Colin had a great spirit about him this week,
especially yesterday.
It is the kind of spirit that brings success.
Finding inner peace will have a positive affect on every aspect of your life.
School work will be easier.
Practice will be fun.
Relationships will be genuinely good.
Making the right decisions will become very clear.
Inner peace is the thing people pay big money to find,
but it's free if you look in the right places.

Sydney did well on a test this week,
and worked on getting ready for her upcoming trek.
(That's a 3 day adventure in pioneer clothing,
pushing a heavy, wooden handcart through the wilderness.)
Sounds super fun.
Dan and I wish we were going.

I learned some new things.
"EMO" has something to do with being emotionally challenged.
"Adulted" is when a young girl kisses another girl.
And that story reaffirmed my belief that sleepovers are a bad idea.
Apparently lots of kids are messed up.
The good thing about learning lots of new, hard things
is that I feel overwhelmingly blessed to be surrounded by such good kids.
I will always prefer that our life is complicated because of scheduling arrangements due to an overabundance of good activities.
Some parents are dealing with their 12 year old daughters sneaking out at night with teenagers.
Some parents are getting the police involved with their teenage sons.
Lots of kids have too much time on their hands,
yet they refuse to cooperate and participate in their homes.
So...
a little missed sleep
and lots of time driving around
are things I am feeling grateful for today.







Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday

It's Friday and I am happy,
because I woke up yesterday thinking it was Friday,
and I was not quite ready for that.
Last Saturday was packed.
This one is worse.
I needed an extra day.

Yesterday,
I spent the day saving some one's home,
and I met some really cranky people,
who became friends by the end of the day.
I love that kind of day.

This morning,
I have a little date.
I am kind of excited.

And later,
if the date goes well,
I will take Dan to one of my favorite places....the laundrymat,
because I spent my time at the park this week,
instead of doing laundry.

I forget how much I love the park.

I only have a minute,
because I stayed up too late last night talking and listening to stories,
like how my mom got her drivers license,
(and that explains a lot.)

Well,
happy Friday.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Thursday

Well, M & D have been successful in recruiting my little princess into their mischief.

Yesterday,
Corbin mentioned that Maryn had my make-up.
She can't reach that.
I found her with an opened tube of mascara.
She saw me and took off running,
which is really funny to see.
I took two steps and caught her.
She giggled.
Cade giggled.
I had a talk with her about getting messy,
as I was washing her up,
the whole time with the other 2 laughing.

Her hands were clean,
but there were highlights of mascara in her hair.
Corbin confessed that Cade had done it.
All three thought that was pretty funny.

I spent the rest of the day trying to keep up with them.
Maryn follows closed behind her brothers,
under chairs and tables,
up on the furniture,
closing doors.

At one point,
I found them all,
climbing the shelves in the food storage pantry.
I breathed a deep, cleansing breath.

I've been here before.
Yes,
but I was younger then.

Someone is starting a pre-school in the neighborhood.
Dan and I calculated that if he works 3 extra hours a month,
Cade goes to pre-school for 24.
We signed him right up.
Dan asked if we could add up additional hours in exchange for longer pre-school days?
hahaha

Cade is the super funnest kid around.
I love him to pieces,
but he is definitely the kid we need to keep busy.
He will play lots of sports,
and be in lots of clubs.

At the end of every day,
he curls up right next to me and falls asleep first.
He is up the earliest and laughs the most.
He's an angel.

And with that....we are off to the dentist.
(I have the responsibility of making and keeping all the appointments.
We have lots the next few weeks.)

And to my sweet, shoeless girl:
I am sorry for this morning.
I knew it was bound to catch you sooner than later.
Please, please, please use the shoe shelf.
I promise your life will get easier.

And to my friend who is dealing with a little bit of depression.
You have a blessed life.
Enjoy it.
Bring into balance what's been lacking.
I firmly believe that no one destroys us better than we destroy ourselves.
Gratitude goes a really long way in overcoming feelings of sadness.
Working out will do amazing things for your mind and body.
Please trust me on this,
and thanks for trusting me enough to tell me.
I didn't give you the comfort you were hoping for,
but believe me when I tell you,
it's all in your head.
This is completely in your control.
The minute you give in to social pressure,
and decide to pop a pill to take your pain away,
all the things that make you smile will disappear too.
You won't care to feel the good when you can't feel the bad.
We are meant to have all these emotions.
It takes work,
hard work,
to find joy in the journey.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Impossible not

An amazing thing is happening here again.
When everyone helps,
we have time at the end of the day to relax.
And the mornings are good again.

This morning,
we spent a few minutes with Colin and Caleb before they headed out early to band.
Reagan and I sat and talked peacefully over oatmeal.
I told her how I have to force that stuff down.
She does too.

There is a reality to having a large family:

Our good moments are so good,
better than you can imagine.

The work is long and hard,
and it never ends.

There are overwhelming instances
when I know without hesitation
that God is with us.

Our family is worth every effort we give.

Today,
there is a pile of laundry,
but it's not as large as usual.
I might actually try to accomplish it.
And the weather is beautiful.
We will go to the park.
I will drive my car around this evening to drop off and pick up kids from various activities.

Right now,
Maryn is talking just behind the next door.
She has lots to tell me every day.
The mornings are her favorite,
when she sings,
and it melts my heart.

Cade and Corbin both ended up on my floor early this morning.
They will sleep in,
because we have nowhere pressing to be.
And then they will commence with their daily mayhem and destruction.


Presley fell asleep with gum in her mouth,
which is now in her hair.
Once, a thought like that scared me.
Now we just get the peanut butter,
and it's no worries.

Reagan, Colin, Caleb and Sydney have loads of school work right now.
They can't spend enough time studying.
Sorry guys.
It's just how it is.
Work hard and feel good about the grades you earn.
It's worth it.

Dan is heading his ways,
and I will miss him.
Cade will really miss him.
He spent the last 4 days walking around calling, "Dad!"
Cade didn't feel well,
and he was a little demanding....well a lot really.

I am finally feeling alive again.
My chest is still sore from coughing,
but I think I can run.

7 weeks to Pat's Run.
A new sticker chart is emerging.
We need to get in about 50 miles before that little race.

In Arizona right now,
the air is absolutely perfect.
The sunsets take your breath away,
and it's impossible not to be excited.
It's the time of year where we end up outside all the time.

Happy Wednesday.
Today is the day.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Feb 22

I woke up at around 2am remembering exactly where I was 10 years ago.

Some dates are never forgotten.
Feb 22, 2001.
My grandpa died.
I can't exactly remember,
but I think my sister picked me up in the middle of the night.
Russ and Jenny were there.
We waited quietly with my mom, Grandma Gay, Aunt Billye and Aunt Cheri until he passed.
It was very peaceful..... the kind of sad experience you wouldn't miss for the world.
I will always remember being there with my brother and sisters.

So I wore my heart necklace today,
because I still miss him.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday

We have overlapping seasons right now,
and that made for lots of games yesterday.
The weather had been threatening to cancel the days schedule,
but it didn't.
We stayed out in the windy, sprinkling cold for the whole thing.

Dan and I both agree,
it's the way we love to spend our time lately.

In between games,
we signed up for football:
Spring Tackle on 2 different teams.


Add it to 2 girls soccer teams,
basketball and softball
And that completes our schedule for sure.


The very best part is all the fun families that signed up too.
The kids have friends on every team,
and we have great coaches.
It's going to be a fun, busy spring.

So this morning,
we sat down to consider logistics.
Every sport requires a lot of gear,
gear that is easily lost if we are not careful.
Dan is a big believer in duffel bags,
and so we will gather all that we can,
and clear some shelves in the garage.


We need to find a good laundry system for uniforms.
I am thinking a basket in the laundry room just for that.

Food and chores are two other issues presenting as problems right now.
The crock pot needs some new, good recipes,
and chores can't wait until Saturday anymore,
but have to be done ahead.

The children were very helpful this week.
Everyone worked hard.
Everyone played hard.
Today we are pretty tired,
and it feels good.

It's been customary that we take either M or D with us to games.
Corbin or Cade gets to be the only child for the day.
Yesterday, it was Cade.
He played and played,

and sat on our laps,
and had lots of snacks.
It was a fun day with him.

We had only a few minutes after the games to cleanup and head out to a reception.
My room was quiet,
and it took me awhile to notice that Cade had crawled up on my bed,
in all his clothes,
with his eyes open,
but was not moving.

A bad sign....
He finally caught the sickness.
He had played out with us all day,
and I felt so sad to see him go down.
He got comfy on my pillow and spent the evening under the covers.

Corbin was dressed in church clothes
and looking adorable.
He went with us to the wedding reception,
and then ended up on Date Night,
which happened to be a late Saturday church meeting.
He was the only kid in the meeting,
but he was good.
Mommy and Corbin got tired and we left a little early.

I curled up next to Cade on bed and fell asleep in record timing.
5 games,
football sign-ups,
helmet/pads shopping,
Pinewood Derby car cut out,
wedding reception,
dinner,
church meeting.
It was a lot for one day.

My conflict for our 2 hour church meeting today was solved with Cade's sickness.
It's Bob the Builder morning instead,
And Dan should have an easy time with the olders.
It's nice to sit through church once in a blue moon without any tantrums from little ones.

Dan and I were talking recently about how most of our friends moved past the toddler phase a few years ago.
Our little ones are somewhat unique.
Remember Teletubbies?
Neither do Corbin, Cade and Maryn.
Tomorrow everyone is excited for the Criminal Minds marathon,
even the littles.
I am beginning to wonder if it's normal that our small kids have no fear of the typical things.
I recently asked Presley and Reagan if they have nightmares from scary movies.
No.

Last week I had a conversation with Presley that went something like this:
"Presley, you are six years old now.
You are too old for me to be getting you ready in the mornings.
By the first grade,
you should be getting yourself dressed,
cleaning up your own room,
maintaining your own backpack and homework,
doing your own chores
and getting yourself breakfast."

"Okay, mom," she said,
and then she did all those things.

I had been feeling guilty about the mornings recently,
but I finally came to peace with it.
The first 5 are pretty much self-maintaining.
They get themselves up.
They find their clothes, shoes and all their paraphernalia.
They eat something for breakfast,
and do their chores (mostly).
Reagan and Presley come in to me with a hair brush and I comb their hair from my bed.
Colin and Caleb come up to say goodbye, read scriptures and say prayers.
They all leave without any morning fights.


For awhile,
I was having trouble with bad mornings.
I noticed on the mornings when I stayed in my room,
the children got themselves ready,
and even helped each other.
If they couldn't find something,
they looked for it.


On the mornings when I come down and facilitate,
everything becomes my fault:
lost shoes,
missing homework,
unsuitable breakfast,
blah, blah, blah.


I was reminded that it's not just the kids fault when things don't go well.
I would respond to their frustration with phrases like,
"Why aren't your shoes on the shoe shelf?"
or
"You should have thought of that last night."


I was engaging.


So I am not anymore,
and I like the peacefulness of the mornings.


Kids are so capable.
We just have to give them the chance to be such.


Well,
those are my bad parenting thoughts for the day.
If you take my advice,
your children will make themselves oatmeal from packages for breakfast,
and let themselves out the door for school,
all while you wait patiently for them to leave.


If the kids take my advice,
life at home will be harmonious.
I will reward you for being so responsible.


Let's keep working on the after-school time.
We need to have the same kind of peace between the hours of 3-6pm.

Remember,
play time happens after work time,
So don't even bother asking me if you can go out until everything is checked off your list.


Our life here will be good if we use the shoe shelf,
and put our things away where they belong.


Thanks, guys for all you do to help.

I love you.





Thursday, February 17, 2011

Thursday

"In with the good air,
out with the bad."

I like that saying,
especially today,
and most days when I seem to find myself in hot water.

I cannot seem to make enough people happy.
The amazing thing is how often I hear about it.
I suppose it's deserved,
but one girl can only take so much.

I will try to fill out all the paperwork as quickly as it comes home in the backpacks.
I will try to answer all my calls.
I will do my best to meet the dead lines,
whether real or just made-up.
I will try not to park where I am not supposed to.

If there was a way I could do everything that everyone wanted me to do,
I would sure try.

Last night,
at the end of his time here,
Dan took me out of the house.
He looked great.
I looked like I hadn't been out in days.
(It was true.)
I put on some jeans and a hat and tried to be social.
He took me to eat,
except it didn't go well,
and I had to come home.
He went on to the grocery store.
There wasn't a moment in 96 hours that he wasn't working hard for me



This morning,
I was really cranky.
Cade interrupted the best sleep I had in weeks,
And then later accidentally threw his head back and caught me in the nose.
It really hurt.
I didn't want to see the kid after that.

I was really not happy to pull kids out of bed to go out this morning.
While driving in the car,
I listened to all the coughing coming out of the back seats.
Poor little lungs.
I listened to the song that reminds me to breathe,
and I watched a guy go past in a wheel chair.

I remembered how grateful I am to have legs that work.

I thought of all the sports we participate in,
and how it's my favorite way to spend time.
My mind opened to our blessings of health.
We work hard here.
It's a gift.
Why do I ever forget that our life here could be so different,
and not nearly as good?

And then I remembered something.
Dan got ready for work this morning,
and while it was still dark and quiet,
and I was sleeping,
He laid down next to me.
I was barely aware,
but he was playing a song on his phone,
and I was drifting in and out of consciousness,
curled up next to him.
I know what he was thinking.
I felt the same way...I just didn't tell him.

Today,
I was feeling really badly that I need him so much.
He shouldn't have to work so hard every day.

This is me,
saying I am sorry,
and if I could make things easier for you,
I would,
and I know you would too.



Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday

Well,
I never catch respiratory sicknesses,
but one caught me....a yucky chest flu.
I saw a doctor and started some antibiotics.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Been sick.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Letters to Wednesday

Dear Wednesday,

I hate you. Please don't make my friends worry. It's nothing personal. I just hate you.

Regards,
Me




Dear children,

We don't use words like "hate" except in writing when it is the only useful descriptive word available.

Love you always,
Mom

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tuesday

The birthdays were fun.
Highlight: Ordination
Food: Golden Corral (They love that place.)
Gifts: Reagan scored on softball gear. Colin got a knife that makes Dan really jealous.

What kind of knife comes with a window shattering device and a seat belt cutter?
A really rad fire knife.

The kid was in heaven.

Today was a good day.
Colin and Sydney were ultra excited to go to the temple.
In the temple, we wear all white clothing.
Colin giggled out loud when he saw me in my white dress.
He had a good experience,
and will be excited to go back.
I think Sydney was just as happy for him as he was for himself.

This day is ending really strange.
Many disappointing things are happening.
I don't really feel that upset about them.
Sometimes, things aren't that great for work.
Sometimes, we get our can kicked at home.
Sometimes, family is a real pain in the beheiney.

Lots of "sometimes" today,
and I still feel pretty happy.
I guess it's because days like this feel like little paychecks.
We are moving in the right direction,
just hitting tons of bumps in the road.

I feel blessed to have work, even if it's frustrating and oh-so-disappointing.
I love my little crew of han yaks that razzle my day.
I love my house, and all it's hotwheels, Legos, and weaponry. I even love the part that never seems to get clean.

Today, driving past the construction site of the new Gilbert Temple,
Corbin said,
"Look mom, the temple is almost done."
(It's only dirt still, and lots of trucks moving the dirt).
I said, "Yes, it looks beautiful."
He said,
"Mom....I love being alive.
And I will love married.
Mom, do you love being married?"

Yes son, I do.

I read a book with Cade about snakes at nap time.

This morning, I listened to Maryn sing her favorite songs.
Breathe by Pearl Jam...."ahhhh haaaaaa"
Hey Soul Sister....."ah, a, ah, a a a a"
And a Pink song....."da da da da, da da da da da"

Maryn is very talented.

The little ones giggled in their carseats,
and then chased eachother around the upstairs when we got home.
Cade and Maryn are easily amused.
She falls over all the time,
and tries to run with her little Frankenstien legs that barely bend.
Shes about 2 foot nothing, bald, and the super cutest thing I have seen all year.
Corbin is an angel,
and always has something funny to say.

We spent the better part of the evening running to Activity Days and basketball practice.

These are the days.
I love them.

My house is still a mess.
There are some heavy things weighing me down.
At any moment,
this completely perfect, imperfect world could change and break my heart.

By all accounts, we aren't meant to survive this....

nah....

We will.

It's really the only good alternative.

This evening,
Caleb asked me if our family is too big.
I said, "No."
He said lots of people tell him it is.
I said, "Well lots of people have eeny beeny families. Teeny tiny. How cool is that? We have a real family."
He was satisfied.

Okay....to be honest, I play it off here like we are just like every one else. It's not really. But everyone has the thing that is meant for them.
Our house is kindof like 'Boot Camp', only every day, and every year.
You push yourself further than you have ever been pushed.
It's not right if there isn't some serious fatigue,
and a bit of puking your guts out.
You see and do things that regular people can't handle.
A litte time in the trenches?.....oh yes.
No pain. No gain.
We have lots of both.

So if you want a little something that will make your life seem like a picnic in the park,
come spend some time with me.

No, not really.....

Good night, Tuesday.

Is it really only Tuesday??
How much more can we do this week?



Sunday, February 6, 2011

Milestones

This day began at 12:30am.
Sleeping just doesn't seem to be in my cards.
I finally dozed again about 3am,
and spent a restless night listening to Cade cough.
At 7, I was exhausted and everyone was waking.
These dragging mornings are such a killer,
mostly for my head,
which has been tapping all day,
and waiting patiently for me to stop so it can go full blown.
No chance of that for a few hours.
I am hoping to outlast this headache.

In my sleepiness,
I remembered that there is a certain chain of events that needs to take place this week.
Our son turns 12 tomorrow,
and that means something good here.
Really, it means lots of things,
but most importantly, to me personally, is that we take him to the temple for his birthday.

But the temple is closed on Mondays,
so it will have to wait a few hours until it opens again.

In preparation for that event,
he needs something significant.
It's called a Recommend.
Not just anyone gets in the temple,
And especially, there are qualifications for a boy who has been raised his whole life in the church.

Of course Colin meets all those requirements.
He's a stellar kid.

But we needed an interview with the Bishop,
and I didn't realize that young men need to be ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood in order to participate at the the temple.
Being ordained requires being presented in Sacrament meeting and having the congregation accept his advancement.
Our good Bishopric guys and super helpful Ward Clerk pulled it all together.

We settled into Sacrament Meeting,
and I had been minding my own business
without thinking too much about anything tearful,
when I realized that
my little son,
who was just baptized yesterday....as I remember it,
is going to be Deacon.
Today was a milestone day.
A wave of emotion washed over me.

I wanted to share with him,
and my other kids,
the most important stuff that will help them in their lives,
but that's impossible.
Instead I shared the one true thing that I know will keep them close to their Heavenly Father.
I shared my testimony of the temple.
Not everyone has one.
Mine is a gift to me,
and it's the thing I am meant to share.
Most people don't understand it.
I hope, with all my heart, that my children learn to love the temple.
I can make this promise:
If you are always worthy to have a temple recommend,
and you go there all the time,
it will be nearly impossible to step away from the things you know are true.

Nothing really significant happens in the temple.
It is mostly quiet service.
But something magically refreshing reminds us that the service we do there is what keeps our hearts and minds close to God.

It's nearly impossible to carry contention into the temple.
When we serve there together as families,
we are bound in a unique way.
Barriers come down,
and trust is built.

And when we can't all be together there,
it's a place to build ourselves individually so we can contribute more to our families at home.

If there is anything worth loving in this life,
it's the temple.
If there is any reason to keep ourselves clean,
it's to be worthy to enter the temple.
It is absolutely worth all the commitment that is required to stay faithful to God and keep His commandments.

That's all for today.
Tomorrow we celebrate with our sweet daughter Reagan and her good brother Colin.
Their birthday is always a really good day for me.

I love you both.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Worth it

There was a moment this week that I don't want to forget.

For a few months,
our kids have been running in their Running Club at school.
Since Thanksgiving,
they have been out the door by 7:10am,
twice a week,
in near freezing or freezing temps,
to run a few miles before school even begins.

This week,
their race was structured so I could move to different points and cheer for them.
1.7 miles.
Honestly,
it made me a little teary-eyed.
They were trying their best,
and it was obvious.
They seemed to perk up when they heard someone cheer their name,
especially Presley.
She ran until her little six-year-old cheeks were cherry red.
She came in 3rd Place for the First Grade.
Everyone in the family had been encouraging her,
and she believed enough to push herself.
We were all so happy for her.

All the kids did tremendously well.
It's highly competitive for the boys in the upper grades,
and I was so proud of them for giving their all.

Reagan ran so fast,
she was the fastest overall for her grade,
even faster than the boys her age.

The afternoons of Running Club races are a little stressful.
We have to really fly to get there in time,
and taking the whole fam is a challenge.
The kids try to hydrate and eat well to prepare,
and they continue to train hard.
There was a moment the other day, when I asked myself if it was really worth it?

And then they raced,
and I realized,
They are beginning to run like they love it.

It occurred to me during the ribbon ceremony,
that running is like reading.
It took me several years of hard work before we realized that our children love books.
They love reading more than video games.
They love it more than sleeping.
Sometimes, when the book is really great,
they love it more than eating too.
They love the library.
They love opening presents and finding a book inside.

Someone once made a promise that it would be worth the effort,
and it is.

On Thursday,
I felt the same motivation about fitness that I felt about reading many years ago.
What if our children loved running as much as they love reading?
Race Day makes training so fulfilling.
How far can running take you?

As we approach our teenage years,
I hope our kids find the good things in life that are worth loving,
like reading and running.
Most people can't or won't do either.
It's not much a habit for me,
but there have been times in my life when I found sincere satisfaction in a book or a good work out.
Sometimes,
it's exactly what I need.

There are some really great things to work at loving.
Scouting, Young Women's group, faith, service, sports, health.
Those are the things that make us work the hardest,
but yield the best results.

Hopefully our teenagers will love running more than they love sleeping in.
I hope they love it more than any kind of harmful addiction.
There are many things that trap people,
But there are ways to stay away from those things.
Stay busy doing things that are good.
It's harder at first, but worth it in the end.

It's Saturday.
For a moment, it was peaceful,
But the minions are emerging,
and some have forgotten that everyone deserves a little peace.
We are struggling to encourage that here lately.

Here is the new thing to work on this week:
This home is a place of peace.
When we walk through the door,
we should be making a positive contribution,
just like when we walk out the door into the world.
We should be bringing back everything good from our day,
and leaving anything bad at the curb.

All of us can give a little more.
We can show kindness when we want to be cross.
We can show service when we feel like being selfish.
We can be mindful of those around us,
and helpful to the little ones who need attention.
Their safety is every bodies responsibility.
There are "Inside Voices" that bring peace.
Harsh words should not be said.....ever.
Sarcasm is a hurtful habit that makes other people feel bad about themselves.

I want this house to be a place where we can bring our friends and enjoy our time together.
Lately,
we have all been too selfish.
I believe that we need to close the house for a few weeks until we are strong enough to bring others in without disrupting the peace.
Monday through Thursday are not play days.
It's okay that we don't have friends over on those days.
One of the coolest things about sports is that we get see our friends at practices,
and that's a huge bonus.

The mornings have been good.
It makes me happy to know that everyone is getting up and getting themselves ready.
  • When we put our shoes and backpacks away, they are easy to find.
  • When our homework is done, the stress is gone.
Eating breakfast and lunch is good when we can do it together,
but it's not always possible to eat together in the morning.
Please be responsible to eat something healthy for breakfast.

The one thing that we NEED to do in the morning
is read the scriptures and pray together.
You wouldn't walk out the door without your jacket in freezing temperatures,
and we can't afford to skip the things that will give us the best protection and the highest chance for success.

So this week,
let's make the after-school time as good as the before-school time.
We should walk through the door and immediately put our things away.
We should speak in soft tones,
and do our chores without complaining.
No one needs to tell us what jobs need completed.
I would really appreciate it if chores are done before school.
It makes it so much easier for me with the little ones during the day.

Maybe after a few weeks of practice,
it will be easier for us to keep the peace in our home.
I like the friends of our kids,
but it's not good if the neighborhood turns our house into a free-for-all playground.
Our friends should feel the peace in our house too.
Running, yelling, playing sports - ALL things for outside.
Please, Please, Please remember to respect our home.

I love you guys.
Thank you for all you do every day to make our life so good.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Dinner

I like the sticker chart.
It's working for me.

Oh and last night's dinner was interesting.
We have been having issues with food recently.
We don't live in the kind of family where Dan and I can afford to become short-order cooks for those not interested in the main course being offered.

So there were some tears last night,
and some emotionally charged, nearly vomitrotious moments.
It was a domino affect.
The oldest resistor started with the dry heaving,
followed by the next,
and finally the last.
It was almost comical.
I wish I felt more compassion for vomiting,
but my reply was this,
"If you puke, make sure it's in the toilet. Clean up your mess. Your dinner will be here when you get back."

They don't know that after a decade of throwing up,
I am nearly impervious to it's affect.
They could puke, right over the side of the dinner table,
and I could finish my meal just fine.

I do not, however, clean it up.
Especially when it's self-induced as a tactic for getting out of eating lasagna.
Gross.

They eventually ate their food.

Anyway, I am hoping tonight goes better.