Monday, December 30, 2013
Friday, May 31, 2013
Monday, May 27, 2013
After a long run of challenging parenting days that can really wipe you out, the sun came out. Isn’t it nice when the sun comes out? To all those sweet friends who commented on my blog and FB, just wanted to thank you so much. I collected all your great tips and advice, and printed them out. They are in my contentment basket, and I read them often.
Have you seen that many times when the rough times hit, it’s really just you being taught by the spirit how to be a better parent? It’s usually not so much about your sweet kids being brats, but about how you need to listen better, breathe more, and take a step back. I’m sure you’ve witnessed this in your mothering days. I sure have. I’m grateful for the lessons.
I want to share something neat I heard in my church class on Sunday. A very humble mother spoke to us about parenting, to which I thought ‘Sweet! Need all the help I can get.’. She taught us the importance of respecting our children’s agency, and to listen to them better.
She spoke of attending a mother/daughter thing in Utah, and the keynote speaker was Elizabeth Smart. I was listening before, but now I was supremely listening, as everyone else in the room. Seriously, you could hear a pin drop as she spoke. (For those who don’t know, Elizabeth Smart was kidnapped years ago in Utah, and 9 months later returned to her family.)
I will do my best to paraphrase, so here we go. Elizabeth was held hostage by her kidnapper, and had horrible things done to her. As the man forced himself upon her, she thought to herself ‘ No one will want me now. This is the worst’, and such. She had the spirit touch her heart and felt the love of her Heavenly Father during that time. She also recalled a conversation she had with her mother. She remembered her mother telling her how much she loved her. She remembered how much her parents loved her, and with that memory, vowed to do whatever it took to get back to her family. The speaker finished her talk with the important reminder of ‘Are we telling our children that we love them dearly? Are we listening to them?’. Whew! So good.
With that, and all of your kind words, I am trying again this week to love my children, and to listen to them better. One day at a time, or like our most favorite movie at the moment, ‘one game at a time’.
In other news, Kevin got bounced a little too hard on a big trampoline, and landed on his arm. He broke it very small, above the elbow, and only has two more weeks in a cast. He has been such a trooper, and has kept a smile on his face. We were all at the hospital, and I watched my boys. Kevin was darling, answering all the nurses questions. Ethan was curious about all the machines and lights, asking the nurses tons of questions, and talking with them. I watched, fell in love with my kids again, and thought ‘They really are good kids.’ It was tender.
May you all have a beautiful week:)
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
It’s been a continuing week of hard mothering days. I was hoping this new week would go better. It hasn’t. Today, I’m finally at a breaking point, and feel completely weak and at a loss to be a parent. It must be a stage that we are going through, but it sure is challenging. Basically, day after day of young siblings fighting, whining, not listening, kicking, hitting, and talking back to the parents rudely.
The talking back part scares me the most. How in the world do you nip talking back in the bud, before it gets cemented into a horrible habit? Please share if you have any advice on that one. We’ve taken away privileges, swimming days, etc for the behavior. I’m trying to look for the positive they do, and reward those good actions they do, rarely lately. I’m trying to give more hugs, to listen better to them, and to really pick my battles, which is a tough one. I do take the kids out to parks and playdates to burn energy and such. I hope I don’t give the impression that I’m not doing anything to try to help this situation. I just feel broken from trying to create a loving atmosphere at home, and all that lovely stuff you hear about in church talks.
It’s been three days of reading scriptures, praying and listening for the spirit to help me be patient and not yell, and three days this week of ‘Groundhog Day’, repeated hardships with my kids. Still waiting for that help to come. Still will try to be consistent in the spiritual devotionals for me, as you can’t give up, even when you want to. This is the testimony strengthening part because I have found that when I pray and work for something really important, the help does not come over night, or their would be no growth. I just need help to get through one hour at a time. I want to cherish my kids so badly, and savor each moment while they are so young. I don’t want to keep struggling with getting the kids to stop fighting, yelling, start listening, so that there is no time, or more importantly, energy to create good memories and learning moments. I can’t even make it one day without yelling. Not one, and that makes me feel like the worst failure of a mother ever. Embarrassing.
I know I’m not alone on this, and that many of you have had these stages with young kids. I just know that not many write about it. I just needed to sit down, take a break to cool down, and write. I’m so sorry for being so open and honest. If you want positive posts all the time, I think you better go read the Nienie blog. She’s amazing. I am just a mom who really loves her boys and little girl, but after continual reading of parenting books, searching the scriptures, praying constantly, I just still am struggling, as most likely some of you out there are, too.
I guess maybe by the end of this week, if I can make it to the end of the week, I will be a little stronger? Maybe just a little more patient. Hopefully, my kids will still love me, and I can try to not have day after day of this rough stuff. Again, so sorry for being somewhat on the negative side. I just am at the end of my rope. Thanks for taking the time to read this, and I will try to make my next post a bit more bright:)
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Mother’s day was special. Shaun spoiled me rotten with some new kitchen items, and an umbrella for our backyard. Packages kept coming to our home that I was told not to open yet:)
The boys were darling in church, singing with all the kids mother’s day songs. At the end of one song, where they sang ‘dear mother, like you.’, Kevin pointed right at me while he was singing. Cracked me up. He’s so funny.
Here’s a little picture tribute to my sweet mom, who I miss dearly. I remember these boxes of all her stuff very well.
She taught me so much, and how to be a kind mom. Selfless. Giving. She was wonderful.
I’ve only been a mom for 5 years, and still have much to learn, but here’s a few things why I love being a mom.
I get to be with them everyday, and see all their little quirks, emotions, and smiles.
I can sit down and hold them anytime. Nothing should stand in the way of just holding them, and giving them tickles.
I can read them stories at night, and tuck them into bed with their favorite blankets and stuffed animals. Ethan’s bed is filled with his stuffed animal friends. Kevin has his blankets, and I love this stage.
I can smile at them, and help them know that they are loved dearly. They have a home that is a safe haven for them, and they can explore their backyard, digging in dirt, and splashing in the pool.
I can make ice cream for them, and it totally makes their day. Simple vanilla ice cream. Perfect.
Oh, there’s so much more, but I love being their mom, and trying to teach them how to be kind, like my Mom taught me.
One thing I love seeing them do daily now:
We got a pool to help survive the awful summer heat this year. We go over the safety rules often with them, but they love the pool. I love being out there watching them, and seeing them splash and laugh.
Brooke likes hers, too:)
Here’s a few more shots from our daily life:
And now, I need to go take care of them. Early mornings sure do fly by fast. The days are so short. Trying to make each moment count:)
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Time for a Brooke post:)
I’m so in love with these pictures. I took these about a month ago. I placed Brooke down infront of the budding trees, saw what my camera was doing to the backdrop, and freaked out. Love it. Love the sun shining behind her.
Brooke is getting bigger and more talkative. She’s such a cute, little girl. Such different mannerisms than the boy’s have. She’s not walking yet, but getting closer every day. Here’s some things about her now:
- She knows what to do with necklaces and bracelets. She quickly puts them on and starts crawling around proudly wearing her jewelry. So dang cute.
- When I carry her, she will lay her head on my shoulder, and just want to be held. It’s so very heavenly.
- She has the sweetest giggle, and the softest cry.
- She gets a little feisty at mealtimes, and will throw her bowl and cup down with vigor.
- She giggles when the boys pick her up and carry her around.
- She does sign language quite often now. Mostly eat, sleep, and more.
- She is now in the nursery class at church, and is doing pretty good.
I’m just so thankful to have at least one girl in our family. I don’t want her to be spoiled at all, but I do teach the boys the importance of treating a lady correctly, opening doors for her, and respecting women. I tell the boys that they are her protectors and friends. Ladies always get fed first at the table. I wish I could put more boys and clips in her hair, but she usually will pull them off quick. Maybe when she gets older.
The month of April flew by! I have a load of stuff to catch up on for this blog. Can’t believe summer is almost here. Here’s a few things:
- We took the boys to the Monster Truck jam here in town. It was so fun for them to see really huge trucks.
- The boys did a little horseback riding learning for a bit.
- The garden is taking off, and the tomato plants are starting to get that amazon jungle look. Yea!
- We got an above ground pool from Costco, and are so incredibly thankful for a way to cool off this summer. Have gone over safety rules constantly with the boys.
- I had a wonderful senior photo session last weekend, and applied a lot of things I learned from my studying. Pictures turned out so beautiful, and I am forever grateful for being prepared.
- I had the blessing of attending my friend’s Herb academy again. I was reminded about the importance of herbal tinctures, liquid medicine, and have begun making them again. I love learning about the healing powers of herbs, and how they can help my family right away when we are sick. It’s the best.
I’m sure there are more, but the sun is rising fast. Got to accomplish another day of meal preparation, school time, loving the kids, and getting a tiny bit of rest to make it through the day. Wishing you all a beautiful day. Take the time to slow down and be in the moment. Such a hard thing to do sometimes, but so wonderfully rewarding.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
This week, I had the neat opportunity to give a little 15 minute talk about our change to processed foods. It was for a small group of lovely ladies at my church. I tried my best to whittle it down and keep it to the biggest and most important stuff we learned, but it was sure hard to do that in only 15 minutes.
I told the class very important things health wise about eating white flour, white sugar, and processed vegetable oils. I wanted so badly to tell them the huge stuff that we discovered, and that it’s given us the most amazing health and wellness we have ever experienced in our lives.
After it was over, I had a lot of self doubts. I thought to myself', ‘ Oh, no. What did I just do? I just told these good ladies with honest hearts and good desires what their beloved sweets and flour products are doing to their long term health. I told them specific facts, about heart disease, what free radicals do from the cooking oils, and cancer. What if they just don’t want to hear that? What if they still love their brownies and pasta, and know about the damage it is doing to their health, and just don’t want to do anything about it? I just came in and rained on their parade. Maybe I should just stop sharing everything I keep learning. Maybe it would be better if shut my mouth, and hopefully not offend anyone who still wants to eat the way they have been.’
These thoughts were with me as I put the kids to bed, and collapsed into bed myself that night. Then, I got a sweet text from a friend who was at my class, thanking me for the info. It sure helped. I thought, ‘Oh, thank goodness. If it was to help at least one person, then it was worth it’. I then was able to go to bed with a rested soul.
People everywhere have their agency; the gift to make choices in their lives. What a blessing Heavenly Father gave us agency, and we are not forced to do anything. Just like sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ to everyone, they can choose to either accept it or not. The same goes with this food topic. I only want to help others. I’ve been on this food/holistic journey since July last year, and I keep learning amazing things that I never knew. I wish so badly at times that I could pick up the phone and call my Mom to tell her about it, but I’m sure she’s watching from heaven above. I keep seeing the results when the knowledge is put to the test, and it has been so wonderful, physically and emotionally. Once you learn something incredible, you can’t go back to your old ways and unlearn it, you know?
Here’s a few things that I didn’t have time to mention in the 15 minutes that I wanted to say:
- Even though we’ve made all these changes and eat different, we don’t do it 100% of the time. We still eat out at restaurants here and there, order Little Ceasers Pizza (because some days you just need a break from chaos and meal preparation! :), and I let the kids eat sweets and stuff at church activities and friend’s homes. Shaun still drinks his Gatorade. I believe its not good to be extreme in anything, but to just do your best. I almost always seem to indulge on the sweets offered at other places, but here’s the thing. When I do, I notice the change in my body fast. I feel everything slowing down. I get a headache. It stinks. So, even though I will eat white sugar stuff here and there, I keep getting that reaffirmation that really don’t want to.
- Shaun and I both experienced this change together. How wonderful it has been to be on the same page with my beloved hubby. He recognized how his body felt when he got off processed foods, and loved it. He witnessed the weight loss first and increased energy, which gave me the desire to start exercising consistently. He’s been totally on board with our eating, and I’m so grateful. At first, it was funny. I gave away so much of our food, and our pantry was pretty bare. He said to me “What are we going to eat?” to which I would reply “I’m working on it”. I knew I had to find new recipes, and learn how to tweak my old ones. I found new food blogs, and learned about new ways to prepare food. The ‘Aunt Jemima’ syrup was a hard thing to get rid of. Now, we melt butter and maple syrup together for pancake syrup. It tastes infinitely better than any store bought syrup.
- I touched on this lightly in the talk, but last year I experienced something amazing. I was by myself going to the library. I got out of the car, and thought to myself ‘I’m going to jog to the front door of the library.’ I began jogging, and couldn’t believe how weightless I felt. I looked at my legs wondering ‘Am I even moving??’ I was but it felt incredible. It seriously felt like I was flying, and that I weighed as light as a feather.’ I stopped at the door, looked back, and thought ‘What just happened?’. It was all in a matter of 12 seconds. This is what happens when you stop putting damaging food into your body. Your body can perform like no other. You’re not weighed down and sluggish. Now, when I walk it feels like I’m floating, and when I run it feels like I’m flying. No exaggeration. It took some getting used to. Makes me think of that article about the basketball star Kobe Bryant. He recently changed his eating to whole foods, and cut out fructose, and refined food. He’s performing better than ever, in an age way past his prime. You can check out the article here.
So, I hope I can be helpful to anyone who wants to learn about their health. I have learned so much, but it’s a continual journey. There still is so much more to learn, and I feel I’ve only scratched the surface. I get so darn excited about it. I love how I feel. I love my hair, and my new legs. It’s just stinking fantastic, it’s happened to plenty other people out there besides me, and can happen to you, if you have the desire. Thank for putting up with me, and please feel free to email me and ask as many questions as you’d like. It never is a bother to me:)