My Reasons

My Reasons

This Is Where It All Begins

This Is Where It All Begins

Friday, July 27, 2012

Two Months!

Luke is 2 months old. Pretty amazing huh!

Very content baby, our easiest baby by far. Hooray!
Eats 4 ounces every 3 hours.
Still on reflux meds, but doing fine with them.
Only waking up once or twice at night...double hooray!
He is smiling a lot more often and beginning to babble and coo at us.
He has a big open mouth smile that just melts our hearts.
He is a little peanut.
12% for length.   10% for weight. 12% for head circumference.
Sam is really into him. He hugs him all the time, and is very concerned for him if he is hungry or sad.
Mary feeds him now and can even burp him. She is an amazing helper!
William thinks he is funny and likes to "pet" his head.
He has a very calm and peaceful feeling about him. He is very sweet and we love him so much!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

And So It Begins

Mary had her first day of second grade today!  She is still at school, and will be done in a few hours.
I can't believe I have a 2nd grader! Wow!

She had a father's blessing from Ben last night, and it was neat to see her take it seriously and feel the spirit. She is a very sweet and in-tune girl.

She was so excited last night that she put on her outfit for today and ran all over the house in it. She picked out her hair do, her earrings, her outfit, her shoes, and she carefully placed her backpack right by the door.  It was great to see her so incredibly excited.

She has Mrs. Goodman this year, and I have heard great things about her. Mary knows a bunch of the kids in her class, and when I walked her to her line this morning, she ran to her friends and didn't look back.  Such a drastic and welcome change from the past two years. My little girl is growing up. It was a wonderful scene to watch.

Sam starts kindergarten next week. It's official, we are back in school. Excitemet is in the air!

And so it begins....

Thursday, July 12, 2012

William's Week

 One entire roll of toilet paper unrolled and in the the toilet
 drew on the portable DVD player screen with pen
    Hit the TV screen and made it black out for a few seconds
 jumped in the pool during Mary and Sam's swimming lessons
 Pushed flower pots down the porch steps
 broke the portable DVD player
 woke up this morning throwing a tantrum that lasted almost 15 minutes
   Threw his entire breakfast on the floor (twice)

picked up a bee and got stung

got into Mary's play makeup, opened it all, and spread it all over her room

Hit Sam, hit Mary, hit Luke, hit mom, hit the neighbor boy

Opened the guinea pig cage and walked away

Opened and tried to drink the kids fluoride rinse

Broke Sam's Lego creation and threw it all over the floor

Dumped all of mom's and Mary's hair clips down the vent

And then at the end of the day he hugs me and says "wuv you mom," and somehow it is all ok.

Gotta love a 2 year old.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Nerves Of Steel

I went to the dentist today.

I don't like going to the dentist.

In fact, I have a slight fear of the dentist. Not an irrational fear, but just a slight fear.

I don't enjoy sharp objects in my mouth, it makes my toes curl and my hands grip.

Today, I went in to get a cavity filled. One teeny, tiny, little cavity in my bottom left molar.

The whole way to the dentist I was talking to myself. It went something like this.

"It's just one shot. Not big deal. Just a little pinch, and then it's all over."
"I went through child birth, I can do a few seconds of a little shot of pain."
"It always sounds worse than it is.It's just a drill.  I won't even feel it."
"By lunch time, it will all be over."
"Mary did it, and she was just fine. Yes, but she also likes to suck on lemons, and thinks push ups are fun."

I was so busy talking to myself, that I drove right past the dentist office. Go me.

I did a nice little, not so legal U turn, and headed back to the office of doom, uh, I mean, the dentist office.

I walked in all cool and collected. Acting like the big, brave adult. Too bad the little panicked kid in my brain was trying to take over.

I sat down and calmly grabbed a magazine all cool-like, and opened it up. I almost choked when I learned that my hero Jillian Michaels is gay. What!?!?  Yeah, I know,it's probably ancient news, but hey I live in a hole, and I don't follow much aside from my kids. And yes, I'm ok with that.  But oh, I was so upset.  Why did she have to go lesbian on me. Rats!

(Disclaimer: I do not think gay people are bad. I may not agree with it, but I do not think they are bad. I have friends that are gay/lesbian, and my favorite hair dresser is gay.They are all great people.  I am just sad that Jillian went that route.)

In the middle of my Jillian tantrum, they called me back to the pit of doom....I mean the dentist chair. I was still fuming over Jillian, and I almost forgot what was about to happen, almost.

They put that fun little q-tip filled with goo in my mouth, that is supposed to "numb you, before the numbing," if that makes sense.  All it did was taste bad, but I humored them and acted like all was well and that I walk around every day with horrid tasting goo filled qtips hanging out of my mouth.

Then the time came. I was going to "feel a little pinch," and out came the needle the size of my head. It looked like it was loaded into a gun of some sort. Rock on.

 Honestly, what was going on here, was he going to poke a hole from my mouth to my eyeball. Does the needle have to be that big! I swear my gums aren't THAT big, are they?

So, I focused on the little screen above my head that had a nice little picture of my teeth and a giant red X on the one with the cavity. I shot fiery darts at that red X with my eyeballs and cursed anything that may have caused this little cavity.

And then there it was, the "little pinch," that became a bigger pinch, and then a much bigger pinch. And then, that famous, "you're doing great, almost done," line from the dentist.
I think my toes curled under to the point of digging into my foot, and my fingers were squeezing holes through the chair. I was sure that the dang needle was making it's way to my brain.  After 10 minutes, I mean, 5 seconds of that big nasty, it was over. He pulled the foot long needle out of my brain and set it down on the tray where it belonged.

I wanted to get up and dance. It was over! I survived! Now, I could just sit back and relax all numb-like and get my little cavity all blasted away.

I sure didn't feel numb, but it would come.
  hhhhmmm, still not numb, maybe it takes a while. 
I bit my lip and ouch! That should not hurt.

In comes the dentist with a big grin, like we were at Disneyland or something, not stabbing needles into people's brains, and he asked if I was all numb and ready to go. 

Every part of me wanted to lie and say I was totally numb, but I am pretty sure another shot would be less painful than feeling a drill go into my nerve. I opted for the truth.

And what did I get for it...the big nasty was staring me in the face once more!

Another 5 seconds of toe curling, finger gripping, "little pinching", fat needle stabbing, "almost there" dentist quoting, bliss.

Finally, it was over, and my eyeballs were still in tact. I was sure he was going to stab one and pull it out of my mouth this time. Nope, just a fat needle come out and back to the tray, where I cursed it with everything I had, and willed it to stay there, forever.

Some tingling came this time.Yes! Take that.

 I waited for the rest of the tingling to come.

It didn't.

It never came.

I wanted to cry. I really did. I really, really did.

Instead, I laughed. Yup, it was kind of the psycho, shrill, I hate this but I am laughing, kind of laugh. The kind that makes little kids run from you, and even scares the person making the laugh. That kind of laugh. 

I wasn't fooling anyone.  I was going to die. Yup, dead for sure.

Out came the big nasty once more. The dentist kept on saying I had nerves of steel. No, not nerves that made me tough, though that would have been nice by this point. He meant the nerves in my mouth, the supposed to be numb nerves. Those ones.
He was acting like it was awesome and that I was so much fun to try to numb up. 

He told me that no one ever wasn't numb after a third shot. And a third shot was rare.

 Why do I have to be rare. Why! Can't I be cool rare. Like roll my tongue upside down rare, or run across the Sahara rare. I don't want to be no numbing rare. That is dumb.

So, out came the big nasty. By this point I had realized that my toenails needed clipping, because I was pretty sure they had just dug trenches into my feet. The dentist chair didn't have a chance against my grip anymore, and if the dentist told me to hang in there once more, I was going to kick him...hard.  This time I knew my eyeballs were safe, but I was sure he had just poked the big nasty through my cheek and out the other end.
I sure felt bad for fish at this moment. I completely understood what it must feel like to be caught on a hook. And that folks, is what I thought about for the next however long it took for the big nasty to be done torturing me this time.  Poor fish. Poor, poor fish.

Finally, some sort of numbing occurred. Hooray!  Now that my feet were ruined, and so was the chair, it was finally over!  yyyeeeeessss

Out came the drill. On went the drill. Down came the drill, and BANG went the pain. Right through my whole body. Did the dentist just shock me, stab me, drill my tooth out of my head, oh wait, I am not supposed to feel this. Hold on! 

Up shot my hand, and it began waving frantically.  I am sure I said stop, but the teeth guard, gauze, spit sucker, and drill made it a little difficult for the words to come out.

The dentist got the message and stopped killing me. He sat back looking at me, completely baffled. I glared at him. OK actually I didn't glare at him, I just told him that I wasn't numb, and that I sure felt him drill my nerve, but I glared at him with my brain and threw darts with my eyes.  He called me a phenom, and with his grin, he said he would just have to numb the tooth directly. This sounded fun.

Out came a new tool. With a new needle, and a much bigger gun.  That dang thing clamped down on my tooth so hard I was sure my jaw was doomed. And then the dentist, pushing so hard he was shaking, continued to push the needle into my tooth. Anyone out there sick yet, or at least cringing. Well, you should be. I was.

After feeling like I was never going to see the light of day again, the pain suddenly left. Yup, gone. So gone. So, so gone. I was either dead or numb.

The dentist gave my tooth one more shot for good measure, grinned and mentioned that he had only had to do that once before, and that he couldn't believe it.  I hate being rare.

After 5 little minutes the cavity was filled. 35 minutes to numb me, 5 minutes on cavity. Does anything seem wrong here?

The dentist told me that I would probably get numb when I got home. He said I could be numb for days with the amount of numbing crap he had to use.  It was a joke. I didn't laugh. I was waiting for my dollar, Mary got one for being a good patient. I wanted one. The dollar never came. Whatever.

He told his brand new assistant to suction all of the nastiness out of my mouth and then I could go. Whatever she did, she didn't even come close to suctioning anything out of my mouth. She said I could leave and walked away.

I sat there with a mouth full of horrid stuff, pinching my lips so it wouldn't spill out. I didn't know what to do. So I did the only thing I could, I squoze my eyes and swallowed it. I probably swallowed all sorts of evil stuff, and I will probably wake up with a growth the size of a watermelon or something, but at least it was over.   I literally almost threw up. Nothing like going out with a bang.

Fast forward one hour.

I am home doing my Jillian Michaels video. I am on day 13 of the 30 day shred. Go me! It is so hard, but so awesome!

The left side of my face is literally sagging, and flopping around as I exercise. Yup, I am completely numb. Extremely numb! Too numb. Scary numb.

So numb that I am laughing at myself and my flopping face but also wanting to cry because I should have been this numb an hour ago.  I am also ticked off and  muttering all sorts of stuff at gay Jillian as she leads me through the work out.  Why Jillian...why!

Fast forward to now.
I can feel every single stinking place where the big nasty got me. Every single one.  It does not feel good. In fact, it really hurts, a lot, and I don't like it. I also can't taste my food. My taste buds are still numb. Dinner felt like eating wood and plastic. No taste, just texture. Gag.

 Boo to the cavity. Boo to the big nasty. Boo to being rare. Boo to gay Jillian. Boo to nerves of steel. BOOOOOO!

The end.

In Case You Didn't See It On Facebook...

The front...

The back...

The smile! (7 weeks old)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Independence Day

We had a great 4th of July. I am so grateful for this country we live in and for the freedoms we enjoy. I will always be grateful for those who sacrificed, gave their lives, and gave their all for our freedom. I am grateful for those who are continuing to do this now. We are so blessed.

We just hung out during the day this year. Ben and I put the grill together that he got for Father's Day, the kids played, and we kept it pretty low key. It felt good to just be together.

That evening, we used the new grill, and had an AMAZING dinner! We grilled marinated chicken, and put the corn on the cob on it as well. It was so yummy. I think I am going to be using the grill all of the time.

We had plans to go to the city firework show, but our neighbor had a bunch of fireworks he was going to shoot off in our circle, and we had some of our own as well.

I am so glad we stayed. It was so much fun! A bunch of neighbors and friends all gathered right here in our circle, and we had a blast (no pun intended) shooting of fireworks, talking and letting the kids play. The fireworks our neighbor had were huge, and just as big as some of the fireworks at the show. We didn't have to fight traffic either. It was really fun!

William liked them, but also didn't.  He wasn't sure what to think.

Sam absolutely loved them! He was so excited about every firework, and thought the whole thing was very cool. It was so much fun to watch him be so excited. During the really big ones, he would sit by Landon and they would hold hands. haha!

Mary and her friends got out their build-a-bears and had a little party.

I love living in a circle and having neighbors that like to hang out and have fun. It was a great way to spend the holiday.

Even better...Luke slept 6 hours that night! Hooray!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Finding a constant in the change.

We have had a lot of change in our household lately.

School ending, a new baby, new sports, summer hours, trips, visitors, ect.

All of the changes have been good or necessary, and have brought with them the fun lazy days of summer. No schedule, lots of playing, going to bed late, and lots of freedom for the kids.

It has been nice to just chill this summer, but I can tell that the lack of schedule and structure is finally taking a toll.

I learned once in a child development class that even though children tend to fight against rules, structure and being told what to do, they actually crave it deep down, and need to know that someone is in control and can help them feel in control and structured too. (in moderation)

The past few weeks a feeling of unsettling and mild chaos has entered our home. Tantrums have begun one after another, complaining has turned into a constant, friends and kids have been in and out and everywhere at all hours of the day/evening, early bedtime has become a thing of the past, and the grumpies have invaded my children.  Not good. Even though they are having a lot of fun, deep inside I can tell they are feeling out of control and unsettled. So am I.

Last night, as I was venting to Ben, totally worn out an frustrated with feeling like a maid, chef, and referee running in circles all day, instead of a mother, I said a silent prayer for inspiration. And it the form of a question from Ben.

Ben asked me to break it down to each individual child and figure out how each child is acting up, and what may be causing it. What needs may not be being met in each child to cause the negative attitudes.

As we did this, the inspiration began to flow. The Lord was blessing me as a mother who needed His help.

We came up with this.

Mary needs structure, schedule, physical touch, one on one time, and something active to do.
Sam needs lots of attention and one on one time. He needs us to play with him.
William needs a little more discipline and consequences for his good and bad actions. He needs to learn his boundaries.
Luke just needs lots of bottles and love.

After realizing these simple but extremely important needs of my children, I felt very strongly that it was time to make a schedule that would meet the needs of each kid, but that we could all follow.

So, at 12:30am, I let the Lord be my guide as I broke the day down into chunks of time. Time for just being home and together, quiet time, friend time, time to get jobs done, meal times..together as a family, free time, play with mom time, and so on.

The schedule is literally broken down by hours and it covers the entire day from waking up to bed time.

I am not running an army here, and there are a few big chunks of free time for everyone, including me, but we know when that time will be now. It is also flexible and will have to be altered when we have company, go on trips, or have things come up. It is more of an overall schedule to follow and something to work from.

I also received inspiration particular to me, as a mother. I felt that these feelings I had about the needs of my children are extremely important. Their childhood is flying by, but I don't want it to pass me by. Sometimes the thought of doing so much can feel so exhausting and overwhelming, and it is so much easier to turn on the TV than to play a game with my kids, but the reality is that I am their mother, and they need me.  They need me to play with them, to teach them, and to be with them. This is my most important calling right now, and it needs to be my top priority. It will be a small window in time that I can be the main influence in the lives of my children, and I need to utilize it to the max.

I felt that if I will pray each day and night for the energy, strength, willingness and time to fulfill the needs of my children and to play with them, it will be given to me.

I make sure to take time for myself each day, but I also felt that aside from this, right now, time with my family and children is what is going to really count.  A family that plays together, stays together.

And so, there may be a little less friend time, a little less me time, a little less focus on outside influences, but I feel that it will bring in more love, more bonding, more feelings of belonging, more chances to teach, and more family togetherness. And I know it will help meet the needs of my children at this point in their lives.

There has been change, but with the help of the Lord, I will be able to mold into it, and make the changes necessary to create more of a constant in our lives.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Luke's Blessing

I know there have been lots of blog posts lately. We finally got our new computer and I am loving how fast it is, and having all of the keys to type with.  :)    IAlong with several other things, I am now able to blog and check up on blogs much more quickly. Hooray!

OK, on to the post.

Luke is 6 weeks old today! It is amazing how time flies, and yet seems to stand still when we have an infant in our home. We love him so much.

Luke's baby blessing was this last Sunday, July 1st.  It was a wonderful event. It was a great day to celebrate this sweet little spirit fresh from heaven, and to have him receive a heartfelt and inspired blessing from his daddy.

Luke wore the same outfit that his older brothers wore on their blessing day. It has a small stain on it from each child to prove it. I call them "love stains." They make the outfit even more special. Luke was also swaddled in a special blanket made by grandma. All of the other kids have a similar blanket made by grandma and they were blessed in them as well. It is a very special tradition.

The day was made even more special, because most of my family were able to attend. As mentioned in my last post, I have been pretty homesick for Colorado lately, but at times like this, I am reminded of why it is so awesome to live closer to home. There is not much more awesome to me than having my home filled with family and loved ones to celebrate a sacred or meaningful event.

My dad, my brother Devin, my brother Tyler, Ben's good friend and co-worker Matt, a very good friend from our ward Gary Kunz, and Brother Sagala were able to stand in the circle as Ben blessed Luke.

Luke was blessed with health, happiness, a solid testimony of Jesus Christ and his Gospel, the opportunity to serve a mission, and the love of his family.  It was a very neat blessing and the spirit was so sweet and strong.

Each of my children were born with a special spirit about them that has followed them up to this point in their lives. Ben and I talk about it often.
Mary had a very energetic, determined,  and strong spirit.
Sam had a very soft-hearted and meek spirit.
William had a very fun loving and happy spirit.
Luke has a very sweet and peaceful spirit.

So far, each of our children still have these characteristics that have become part of their nature.

As Luke was blessed, I could feel his sweet and peaceful spirit radiating to my heart.  He is a precious baby.

After the blessing, we all gathered at our house for a lunch.  It was fun to be with everyone and to talk and laugh.  My mom gave Mary and Sam some "skin stickers" and we all ended up with one. Even my dad ended up with a Little Mermaid on his forearm.

I am so grateful for the Gospel in my life, and for the priesthood. I am glad that Ben was able to give Luke such a sweet and inspired blessing full of love and hope for the future. 

I love my children,each one,  and I hope and pray each day that they will grow to love the Gospel and their Savior and live blessed and happy lives.

Sweet sweet Luke, thank you for coming to us and blessing us so much already.

Oh, Colorado.

This past Sunday, Ben was able to give Luke a baby blessing. (that will be the next post)
The opening hymn for the meeting was "America The Beautiful." My eyes filled with tears as I thought about how the inspiration for that song was received on Pikes Peak, in Colorado Springs.

Exactly two years ago, on the same week, William received his baby blessing during our last Sunday in our Colorado Springs ward.  Pretty crazy. It is even more ironic, because these past few weeks, Colorado Springs has been in the front of my mind. The Waldo Canyon fire that has been raging there has occupied my thoughts, prayers, and heart.

Looking at the pictures of those beautiful mountains and foothills, and of the neighborhoods being destroyed literally made my heart break, and made the tears flow.  Colorado Springs is the home of my heart, and it always will be. I still consider it home.  I have had a lump in my throat and a pit in my stomach as I have followed the news of the fire and the devastation is has caused.

Looking at the pictures of the mountains that we hiked in, camped in, and loved, burning acre by acre is horrible. Not to mention all of the homes lost and lives effected in the community that we love so dearly.  We have hiked a couple of times in Waldo Canyon itself. It is a beautiful place.

I have had to really dig deep into my faith this last little while, and continually remind myself of the the Lords will that we need to be here in Utah, and not in our beloved Colorado Springs. The move from there was one of the biggest tests of faith that Ben and I have ever endured. We had planned on making Colorado our permanent home. At times, I still have to dig deep and pray to the Lord for assurance that we need to be here.

We are happy here. Our children are absolutely thriving here (one of the biggest reasons I feel that we need to be here).  We have great friends here.  We are involved here. Ben has a great job here. We have done our best to jump in and make this home, and we have. We really do love Utah, our neighborhood, our friends and our ward here. Utah has a lot of things that give it a bad reputation, and a lot of people that don't live here think they know what it is like and judge it (I hate to admit it, but we sure did), but to be honest, it is a great place, and those rumors really aren't true, at least here in Herriman.  We have learned that you really should live in a place, before deciding what it is like and judging it.

I guess, I have just had to regroup this past little while again, and pull into my faith in the Lords hand in our lives, and believe that He knows what is best for us.  He blesses us when we follow His will, even when we don't know why we are asked to do hard things. We will visit Colorado Springs often, and we will always be so grateful for our experiences and friendships there.  We will continue to love life, love Utah, and find joy in the journey.  There are just times when I have to sit back and say, "Oh beautiful Colorado, how I miss you."

Monday, July 2, 2012

First Run

Smell of freshly cut grass
Children's laughter
Full purple moon
Fresh summer evening air
Smell of Barbeque
Hearing my own footfall
Sidewalk murals done by children
Majestic Mountains
Steady working heartbeat
Birds gliding overhead


My Little Miss

As mentioned in the previous post, last week I was able to take Mary and Sam out on dates. 

Mary already knew exactly what she wanted to do. She has been saving her money for months for this activity.  She wanted to go to Build A Bear.

So, off we went. 

We chatted in the car about how she is doing. She asked me questions about Ben and I dating, and we were able to just connect and have fun.

We went to the bank first, because Mary had bags of coins.  I taught her how to put them in the machine that counted them. She thought it was awesome, so did I.  She then took the receipt to the lady at the desk, and was given cash back. 

Then it was off to the mall. We browsed through some stores, and I chuckled at Mary's style and the things she thought were pretty and cute. I love her style, it fits her. One lady even gave us a free pair of earrings for looking at her shop. Score!

We arrived a Build A Bear, and Mary got a huge smile on her face. It was so cute.
She spent a long time picking out her bunny, and an even longer time picking out the outfit.  It was so fun to watch the process she went through to pick everything out.  She is such a smart girl.

She just kept on hugging her bunny and whispering to it. She was told to make a special wish before she put the heart in her bunny. She closed her eyes and concentrated to hard before smiling, opening them, and placing the heart in the bunny.

Her bunny is absolutely adorable. I love the outfit she ended up with, after trying on about 20 different things!   She named the bunny Suzan and calls her Suzy.

Mary literally skipped out of the store, and then it was off to the snow shack. Mary loves the rainbow snow cones, just like Sam. 

On the way home, I asked Mary what her wish was, in Build A Bear. She told me that she wished that all of her other stuffed animals would like Suzy and be nice to her.  My heart melted. What an unselfish and thoughtful wish. So cute!

I sure love Mary and the girl she is becoming. I am grateful for a daughter and for the chance we have to be together. I look forward to many GNO's in the future with her!

My Little Man

Grandma JoJo was here last week, and amidst tons of things I was able to get done, there were two things that were the most important.  Time with Mary and Sam.

  William and Luke have plenty of attention right now, but Mary and Sam spend so much time romping around outside with friends and blasting in and out of the house, that I feel like I have lost some connection with them.

So, I asked Sam out on a date.  He said yes, and I was happy. 

I let him pick the activities. 

We went to the pet store first, and spent a long time looking at all of the animals and talking about them.

Sam held my hand the whole time, and I loved it.

Next, it was off to Target. I let Sam pick out two things he wanted (within a price range). I had to really bite my tongue and force myself to say, ok, when I saw what he ran to.

I have never seen a kid grin the way Sam did when I handed him the sword and the mask. It was amazing and so adorable. He was over the moon! He immediately started fighting the bad guys, right there in the isles at Target. He made sure we were safe the whole way back to the car. No bad guys got us. Few!

Next, it was off to the snow shack. It has been hovering around 100 degrees here for the past week or so, so the snow cone was the perfect treat. Sam got a rainbow one, and ate the whole thing, while holding his sword.

We talked in the car, I told him how special he was and talked to him about some of his talents and strengths. We connected, and we were happy.

I love my Sammy boy so much. 

And guess what...he asked me on a second date, and I said yes!