Monday, September 29, 2008

A Testimony is found in the bearing of it

Yesterday we had kind of a cool sacrament meeting. I was in the mother's room feeding Mique when four of the young men got up together and bore their testimonies in English and then in Spanish. They worked on learning it and were challenged to share in Sacrament meeting. They did a great job, and I found myself feeling a little jealous that they were able to learn a little Spanish. I wish I spoke it so badly, but obviously not bad enough to actually learn it. Shortly after that I walked back into sacrament to sit with my family.

Shortly after that I look up to my dad on the stand and he mouths something to me. It took a second to register, but he was telling me to come do it in Dutch. I did not hesitate to shake my head and tell him NO WAY! I am not that great about bearing my testimony anyway, let alone in another language. Though, it did not take long for my wheels to start turning.

I had not shared my testimony in over nine years in Dutch. I knew it would not come out smooth, and what if I struggled for words? I have only kind of spoken Dutch out loud three times in the last 9 1/2 years. Then I think if those boys had the courage to do it in a language they really do not know, why should I not have the courage to it in a language that I do know, though a bit rusty.

Then I think about how someone mentioned they knew their mother's testimony because they heard her bear it often. I want my kids to know I have a testimony, yet I do not bear it often. I do not want them to be scared to go up if they feel the prompting. If that is the case, then I need to be an example, as much as I might not like it.

Then I thought, what is the point of sharing in Dutch, no one will understand. There really was no purpose. That though was quickly shattered. I realized there are some things of which I wanted to bear testimony, but they are so personal I would not actually do it in sacrament meeting. This was a great opportunity for me to say some tings out loud that I want my Heavenly Father to hear. It was a way for me to say those things out loud without feeling uncomfortable due to the personal nature.

Okay, so all my reasons were washed away and I knew it was something I should do. I needed time to formulate in my head and make sure I felt comfortable with most of the words I wanted to use. I waited until the last, but I made myself get up and do it. I am not sure what it is about getting up there, but I forgot to say several things I intended. I am very confident that my thoughts and intention were know by Heavenly Father and he understands what I wanted to say to Him.

I have always loved the following quote by Boyd K Packer, and feel its power even more today:

"Oh if I could teach you this one principle. A testimony is to be found in the bearing of it! Somewhere in your quest for spiritual knowledge, there is that 'leap of faith,' as the philosophers call it. It is the moment when you have gone to the edge of the light and stepped into the darkness to discover that the way is lighted ahead just a footstep or two. "The spirit of man,' as the scripture says, indeed 'is the candle of the Lord." It is one thing to receive a witness from what you have read or what another has said; and it is a necessary beginning. It is quite another to have the Spirit confirm to you in your bosom that what you have testified is true. Can you not see that it will be supplied as you share it? As you give that which you have, there is a replacement, with increase!"

It was something I needed to do, and of course something that strengthened me. I originally thought there was no point, but I was quickly reminded that there always is a reason, and yesterday the reason for for my own benefit!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Love Hate Relationship

I was thinking today that I have a love hate relationship with several things. Just a few are: Grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning the bathroom, and runnning. Let me explain further:

Grocery shopping: Yesterday I went on my first full on grocery shop with all four kids by myself. I knew it was inevitable, but I was still dreading it. I have always hated grocery shopping, but now it is much worse with all the kids. By the end of it all I was a little frazzled and very impatient. I HATE GROCERY SHOPPING! But, I love having fridge full of food, snacks for the kids, and most importantly ice cream in the freezer.

Cooking: I have never been a real fan of cooking. It is not so fun at the end of the day when I am rushed to get it all done with four kids yelling at me for different reasons. It is a fine balance with the baby making sure she is not going to be hungry right in the middle of it. Asher usually is hungry and screaming at me by then...last night it was for marshmallows (which he did not get.) Jamison and Caleb are fighting over what they want to watch (tv is necesarry for my sanity at this point.) So what do I love about cooking? There are two things. The first is making a meal that pleases my husband. I love it when he enjoys the food I have prepared. The second is cooking with my husband. We are trying to have a date night at home where we put the kids to bed early and he and I prepare a meal together which we have planned together. It is really nice to work side by side and then enjoy the fruits of our labors. Last night we enjoyed baked shrimp that was dipped in olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and then coated in a breadcrumb, garlic, parmesan mixture. Next was Marsala chicken with angel hair pasta and sauteeted carrots, squash, zuchinni and onion. Oh so yummy! Our dessert fell through, so we just had Ben and Jerrys. It is a good time for us.

Cleaning the Bathroom: This is one of my least foavorite things about being a housewife. Cleaning the bathroom sometimes grosses me out...what with having a two year old boy that often gets distracted while going to the bathroom and all. I am also not a huge fan of hair in the tub, and with a little girl that is inevitable! What then do I love. I love walking into a bathroom that looks and smells clean. That is very satisfying.

Running: Today I went on my first run since Miquelyn was born...well actually my first run in just over four months. I was a little nervous that I was going to die even though I was only going two miles. What did I hate...well when I started the run I felt my back end bouncing all over the place. I hate having that reminder of how out of shape I am and how far I have to go. I loved that I felt awesome on my run and could have easily gone another mile or two. I loved that I was out hitting the pavement again...I have missed it! I loved that my legs did not really hurt much at all. I love my time to myself when I run. But most of all I loved that when I ran up to the house I had a three year old boy greeting me with a cup of water, a daughter that could describe to her father exactly what I was wearing down to the ponytail and stripes on the shorts, and most of all a supportive husband there to ask how it was and look at me with pride as I told him how good it felt. Man I have a good life!

Music Makers

Friday, September 26, 2008

Music is what feelings sound like. ~Author Unknown

In our family music is a feeling of happiness. A couple of nights ago we had the music on during dinner. At one point I look at Asher and he is playing his fork like a trumpet. Too cute!!! The rest of the family joined in and I had to remember it forever with a picture. Music set a tone for that night or enjoyment, playfulness and happiness! Last night I was rounding up the kids to get them to bed. I went out to the tv room to get their teeth brushed. Grant had the music on once again and the two older kids were dancing. It was not long before Asher and Grant joined in. I was in a rush to get the kids to bed and have a little time without them (oh how I need that time by the end of the day). I sat down for a minute and let that rush melt away. I realized that it is more important to enjoy the kids in these moments then rush them away and enjoy those moments without them. Before I knew it I was joining in too. Together our family loves to listen to music (loud I might add) and wiggle our bodies along with it. These are some of the memories I never want to fade.

Music expresses feeling and thought, without language; it was below and before speech, and it is above and beyond all words. ~Robert G. Ingersoll

This is a form of expression that is much appreciated in this family!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

We had a green day!

Jamison was so excited to tell me today that she did not get her color changed and she stayed green. She even wanted to call her dad and tell him when she got home. She was even more pleasant after school today than she normally is. Everyone has been telling us that it is not as big of a deal as we might think and that we need to relax and give her a break, and on some level I know that, but I am her parent and I worry. She really is a good kid, I just want to make sure I am doing all I can to help her be a good person and have success in her life. It was a rough day yesterday, but today has been immensely better. I made myself take a nap today and I have been better able to deal. The kids have been good (probably because the tv has been on a lot today, what can I say a free babysitter. At least most of the time it has been a learning so I tell myself.) I guess I just don't want to ever look back and see that I let my kids down because I did not teach them well enough. I know that I will look back and wish I had done things differently, that I will have regrets, but I do not want to let them down.

On a different not I want to write just a little snippet about each kids that either cracks me up or amazes me. Despite bad days, I do have wonderful/amazing kids (and I know I am biased.)

  1. Jamison: She is the most forgiving child. She can be is such big trouble, like yesterday, and within minutes she is holding tight onto our necks giving us hugs and telling us that she loves us. She is such a smart kid, she just does things on her own terms, she often does not let people know how smart she is. She can be strictly obedient. Yesterday she was told that she could not have dessert. She was in tears because she wanted it so bad, but she would not take it if offered to her because she was told she could not and respected that. She politely talked to her dad and eventually got to have some ice cream, but she sometimes can truly respect what she has been told even if tempters stand right by. I hope she keeps that strength for good always!
  2. Caleb: What can I say, this kid loves the Green Bay Packers. I am not sure where the love affair began, but it is strong now. Last week the Packers game was not broadcast and he was devastated that he was not able to watch the game. This week it was a night game and he was able to watch the first hour of it before bedtime. On Monday morning the first thing he said to Grant was, "Did the Packers win last night?" I cannot even believe that he thought of that, or even cared. Oh, but he did. Football is a big deal to him and he is passionate about it. He is also passionate about his baby sister. He always wants to take care of her and sits by her side to help her stop crying. It is so sweet. He even tells me he wants to change her diapers, if only! His passions run deep, and I love it!
  3. Asher: I have not seen a kid much happier about a birthday present than him when he got his golf clubs last night. The kids has not put them down for more than about an hour since last night...whether he was awake or asleep. Yes, he slept with his club and ball. He loves golf like Caleb loves football. I still have not figured out if the love of sports is learned from Grant or if it is just in them. One more thing about my little Asher-basher. Our primary makes a cd of the songs for the program for that year for each family. I keep it in my car and try to play it for them so it helps them to learn the words. Yesterday I turned it on and Asher was singing I am a child of God. He actually knew a lot of the songs. When a verse would finish he would yell, "more, more, " until the next verse started. I was so proud of him, what a smart good kid!
  4. Miquelyn: She obviously is too small to really show us her personality, but I know it is there. With our kids I have definitely learned that they are born with their own little personalities. I am looking forward to discovering hers. She has been such a good baby so far, thank goodness. It has made this transition so much easier than I thought it would be. I do love the moments we get together when she cuddles up to me and falls asleep. I love the feeling of her close by. She is my little sweety and She has filled her place in our family perfectly!

Needless to say, a much better day!

Monday, September 22, 2008

I am such a worse parent than I thought I was

My day started out quite well, but it has only gone down hill from there. Today is Asher's and Chelsey's birthday so the girls went out to lunch for Chelsey. Asher was so crabby he cried and screamed at everything. He was also throwing his fork and spoon all over the place. At first I tried to be extra patient with him because it is his birthday, but we quickly got beyond that. I had to take him out 2 or 3 times and eventually had to take him out to the car and wait for everyone else to be done to bring Caleb to me. We are struggling with finding a balance with naps, and today proved to be a monumental struggle/failure. After Jamison got home from school the Relief Society President came to visit. Jamison kept interupting us and trying to tell a story, but never finishing a sentence...very irritating. Once again I was trying to be patient. During all of this Caleb kept making Asher scream. I asked him countless times to cut it out, but to no avail. I finally got sick of hearing it and had to practically chase Caleb to his room because he would not go when he was told. Caleb has developed an attitude as of late, and I have to admit I do not like it. After the Releif Society President left I started talking to Jamison about school.

I need to back up a little for this. In Kindergarten they use a color system. You start out as green and if you get in trouble your color is changed to yellow. If you still get in trouble it changes to red and your parent's get called. Kindergarten has been a very difficult transition for Jamison, but two weeks ago she seemed to be comfortable and doing fine. Last Monday I picked her up from school and she told me that she got in trouble for stealing. I had parent teacher conference that day and sure enough my little angel (devil) got caught stealing crayons and buttons. She talked to the teacher and apologized, but her color did not change. We had a long chat with her at home and she promised to be better. I also found out that she has been sucking her thumb almost all day at school (big no-no.) I told the teacher she definately could tell her to take it out! I was a little stressed at this point. The next day she came home and told me she got her color changed to yellow because she poked a boy in the eye. Once again another talk and she said she would be better. Then the next day came with another yellow. This time she spit in the classroom. I could not believe she did that, she always gets in trouble for spitting at home. At this point I am furious and at a loss. Anyone that knows Jamison knows that there are not barganing chips. Nothing matters to her enough to be a punishment. What do I do??? Well Jamison and I talked about it and we decided that she lost all her dolls, doll clothes, barbies, dress-up clothes and purses and when she got a green she could earn them back one at a time. On friday she earned back a doll, but lost it again by Saturday for poor behavior. What am I to do.

Today I asked her if she stayed green and she told mee yes. WELL...when I looked at her folder she was yellow, in trouble for the fourth time in one week. I still am not sure exactly what she did to get in trouble. She eventually told me that she got her color changed because she touched a boy on the leg when she was not supposed to. I need to talk to the teacher and find out what really happened. I am so frustrated I do not know what to do. I thought that I was doing a better job of teaching my kids...obviously not. I thought they knew how to behave better...another obviously not. I have no clue what is going on with our family, but I do know that I do not like it. I do not know if it is partially a lack of sleep or pure frustration, but after talking to Jamison and not being able to get a hold of Grant I almost lost it and broke into tears. I know there is not manual to parenting kids, but right now I could really use one because I feel like I am failing miserably!

Friday, September 19, 2008

The good ole days

I have a lot of different good ole days, but today as I was driving to the bank I was reminded of one particular type. I was stopped at a light on 20th waiting for it to turn green when I looked over to my right and saw a couple of girls in a red car dancing around and laughing. They looked over at me like we know we are silly, but we are having a blast. It reminded me so much of Chelsey and me in college. We loved to turn the music up in the Celica and sing and dance while driving down the road or freeway. We did not care if people thought we were crazy or silly. We even liked to get a little bit of a reaction. We were just having fun. Oh the carefree days of no major responsibility. Our biggest concerns were: school, getting to work after being up until 4 a.m., what color to paint our nails before going dancing, what boys we were going to hang out with, what we were going to be able to make for dinner with what we already had in the apartment (a very strange green bean casserole that only tasted good that night because we were so hungry!) and making sure we always had a box of brownies and mint cholcolate chip ice cream for late night chats about who knows what (boys?!). Those were glorious days. Then, today I found myself in a car with four car seats (all occupied) driving to the bank before returning home to make dinner for a family of six (funny enough the dinner is a shepherds pie with green beans) while listening to Michael Buble to which my daughter has begged me to listen. There are moments that I really miss those days, but I would not trade these days for anything!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My shoes

I have been thinking about doing a blog for over a year. It all started last May when Stephanie introduced me to the world of blogging. The clentcher was when she told me that there is a company that will print and bind your blog every year. What a perfect way to journal my life. I have to admit I hate writing much anymore, it makes my hand hurt. Working on the computer is much easier. Well here I am a year later and after realizing I was the only female in my family that did not have a blog, I got on the ball. Grant thought the name of the blog was a little melancholy...I did not think of it that way. I actually found a little humor in it considering Grant has done a pretty good job of keeping me "barefoot and pregnant" for the last 6 years. He actually was ever so kind enough to buy me my favorite flip flops ever (Rainbows-will never own another brand again) so that when my feet got too swollen I was not literally barefoot for lack of shoes in which my fat feet would fit. I am hoping to strap on my running shoes again in the next couple of weeks. I told you I have a thing for shoes. There are already so many things I want to write about, but I will start with this short little blurb. I am online and here goes the story of our family's path through my eyes.