Sunday, January 19, 2014

Home Sweet Home

I'm writing from my new desk in my new house.  I can't even tell you how good it feels.  There are boxes everywhere.  My garage is full thanks to some builder issues which made us have to move everything into the garage instead of the house.  We spent part of this week at my in-laws and part of it in a hotel and things have been chaotic and stressful as we've met with the bank and the builder trying to work things out, but right now, none of that really matters.  What matters is that we're here.  I don't think I realized how much stress I've been under until it all started to melt away the first night we slept here.  I feel a measure of peace that I haven't felt in months.  I just needed to record the right here and right now so I don't forget the satisfaction that has come.  I'm home and my heart is happy. I'll be back soon with pictures.  

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas

I didn't send Christmas cards this year.  If I'm lucky I'll get out new year's greetings, or maybe Easter cards as I've done in the past, but I'm not making any promises.  So take this as your Christmas greetings. 

This year has been so full.  Looking back to January, we've been on a ride that we never expected this year.  I never would have guessed that we'd be selling our home and building a new one.  It brings meaning to the adage, "life is what happens when you are busy making plans."  We are already starting to see the blessings of following these promptings to make our home some place new.  I am grateful to our Heavenly Father for the journey He has led us on.  It's been full of learning and growth.  I am also grateful to feel settled again soon.  The in between times can be tiresome.  This month has been a blur as our house gets closer to completion in the midst of the holidays and family birthdays and so many other good things.  Last night I took some time to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas, and all of the stresses melted away for a little while.  I know that Jesus Christ came to earth, a perfect, sweet baby, and that He lived a perfect life and died for each of us.  Even though the story of His birth is common and widely told, it still feels personal and sacred to me each time I hear it or read it or retell it.  My knowledge of Him is my anchor, and after this year I feel especially aware of this.  Wishing you and yours the peace that only He can bring!

via Jessica Haderlie

Friday, September 20, 2013

Checking In

I have accepted that while there is a season for everything, this is not currently my season for blogging. Hopefully in a few months that will change, but right now things are sporadic at best, and that's ok.  I do want to remember a few things here and there. I want to remember that last Saturday Nellie took her first steps while I was on a walk to the temple with some ladies from church.  I want to remember that she can't be bothered with anyone trying to coax her and only wants to do it if no one is paying attention.
I want to remember that building a home is equal parts hard and wonderful.  It is a blessing that I am grateful for every day, but it is also not easy.  Shawni, one of my favorite bloggers, posted about her experience with building a few weeks ago.  And then she was massacred in the comments section for "complaining" about the process.  I have hesitated to post much about building for that very reason.  I know that most of the people who read my blog are friends and family who are genuinely interested, but I don't want to seem ungrateful when I talk about the hard things (even though they really are  hard!).  I don't want to lead people down a path of comparison.  I plan to share some pictures when all is said and done, but in the mean time it's not something I want to share every detail about.  I'm happy to talk about it when people ask (and if you have questions, feel free to do so!), but it's not something I want to write about at length.  Progress is being made slowly but surely, and I'm still working on making a few decisions.  As grateful as I am for the process, I will also be grateful when it's over.  I look forward to feeling my time being less divided, because this process ranges from a part-time to full-time job, and I already have a full-time job that I kind of like and that I really want to give all of my energy to.
I want to remember living in this quirky house.  I think the kids have loved sharing a room (minus Nellie).  I will be glad to have everyone sleeping a little more.  I will be glad when light fixtures are hanging from the ceiling instead of piled high all over the house.  I will be glad to have food that doesn't rapidly spoil due to humidity or a fridge that likes to freeze my food.  I will be glad to not feel so displaced, not feeling like I belong much of anywhere.
I want to remember that this week with Sam has been eternally long.  A ruptured ear drum that didn't fully rupture initially led to some long days and longer nights.  The amount of crying has been astounding, and I've felt so bad for my poor boy.  But today he's rebounding and I'm so glad we're turning the corner.
Today I want to remember that the sun is shining and the air is crisp, but warming up a little for the weekend.  Oh, how I savor these last few warm days.  General conference is around the corner, and the anticipation makes me happy.  There are good days ahead.

Monday, August 12, 2013

So hello

Well, there's no easy way to jump back in besides jumping back in, so hello!  Sorry for the extended hiatus.  Summer in our little house has been busy.  Life in our little house is busy.  There is chaos and clutter everywhere making it hard for me to function, let alone think coherent thoughts or write coherent sentences.  The past few months have been devoted to meetings with contractors, swimming lessons, library trips, and attempts to maintain sanity.  Still more contractor appointments to go, but we're getting closer.  Framing has started and it's starting to look like we might indeed have a house sometime.
We returned last night from a lovely trip to San Diego.  We went with the husband's family to celebrate my mother-in-law's completion of chemo-therapy.  We are happy she is cancer free and hope it remains that way!  And what better way to celebrate the good news than galavanting all over southern California in 70 degree weather.  It was fantastic.  I think one of the highlights of the week for me was the beach.  I could have done a whole week of beach days and been totally content.
In other news, the husband started a new job today.  I need to come back and record this story because it's one for the books, but we are feeling extremely grateful for this new opportunity, and the fact that his commute is being cut in half has me beyond thrilled!
In a few weeks I'll have 6 hours a week with only one child at home.  I'm hoping blogging will increase.  In the mean time I have a busy week ahead with back to school preparations and to-do lists that have been put off for a week.  Hope to be back soon!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Best-laid plans

Sorry for the extended hiatus.

We moved.

Despite our best-laid plans to only have to move once, it didn't work out that way.  We're still waiting to break ground on our house (come on, building permit!).  In the mean time, we knew the house wouldn't be finished before our buyers needed to move in, so we found a cozy little house in our current ward, affectionately referred to as our "summer cottage", and moved in over the weekend.  We're all...adjusting.

Somewhere in there Nellie turned 1.  She is in that busy stage, which is not very ideal for moving.  She is sweet and getting more personality all the time.  She still has no teeth, but she's developed quite a love for food and is bottomless.  Her belly gets enormous when she's done eating.  She crawls up on her feet a lot because the tops of her feet are so chapped from crawling. She waves and says a few words and has an extreme love affair with her blanket, or fuzzy, or as she says it, "duddy."  It's adorable.

I turned 31.  We were moving all day, so it wasn't the best birthday ever, but I had friends and family who made me feel special despite the less than desirable activities that day.  My quilt project started 5 years ago was quilt-napped and finished by my amazingly talented sister-in-law.  I am beyond excited about it!  I can't wait for it to find a place of honor in our new home.

I'm hoping to return here soon.  So many lessons I don't want to miss out on writing down.

In the mean time, my current realization is this.  Sometimes I think that if things seem good there's an inevitable cruel twist of fate.  I've blogged about it before- waiting for the other shoe to drop.  But I've again been reminded that there are no back-handed blessings.  Heavenly Father loves us and isn't passive-aggressive.  He doesn't delight in irony or wait to zing us just when things are going along swimmingly.  I need to be more trusting in His plan instead of looking for the dark cloud I'm sure is waiting on the horizon.  Things are good, and I need to remember that there are good things to come.  His plan is always better than anything I could dream up for myself.

Hope you're enjoying summer!


Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother's Day





gorgeous pictures of me with my kids by Jessica Haderlie

These four.  I love them deeply.  Although there are a million things I've learned since having children, I also realize that a mother is something I have always been.  In college my friends would tease me about my motherly ways.  I was always keeping things real (aka responsible).  Having children was just a natural extension of my true desire- to care for others.

I've had a lot of thoughts lately about things I want to pursue outside of motherhood.  My deepest desires are all intertwined in pursuits to help others.  I want to help people recognize their worth, improve, and become the best versions of themselves.

Suddenly I realized that I don't need to wish for other avenues to do this- I am already doing it in the very best way I ever will- as a mother.  I am grateful that my greatest desires are being fulfilled in my role as a mother.  It's always been who I am.  It always will be.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Mayday

Some years on May day I love thinking about traditions of sharing flowers with friends and celebrating Spring.  Other years, it feels like the cry of distress for falling planes or sinking ships.  This year was more akin to the latter, especially when we woke up to snow this morning (I kept telling myself I'd rather have it May 1 than June 1 to try to console myself).

The past few weeks have been a blur. Two weeks ago Sam had a little stomach flu.  And then Addie.  And then Charlie was sick but never threw up.  And then I got it.  And the husband never did, but the next day he ended up in the hospital for a few days thanks to his Crohn's.  We'd been on the fence for about 10 days at that point as to whether he'd be able to stave off dehydration and turn the corner or whether he'd end up in the hospital.  Crohn's won.  One night his dad was there visiting with me while he was falling asleep.  He turned to me and talked about what a great example the husband is of being cheerful through his trials, and truly, he is.  He learns the name of every nurse, aid, and janitor who comes into his room and jokes and laughs.  He is good-natured and kind, even when he doesn't feel well.  He came home a little too soon and we've almost returned to the hospital several times, but he's doing his best to recover and taking it easy at home this week, going stir-crazy in the process.

He came home last Thursday and Nellie started feeling lousy that night.  Finally on Monday a trip to the doctor confirmed double ear infections- her very first.  In other Nellie news, she started crawling Sunday, just days before she hit the 11 month mark.  She has taken to it with gusto and is trying to explore all over the house.  As glad as I am that she finally hit that milestone, I am not always good at keeping every.little.crumb off the floor, so I'm trying to catch up on baby proofing and on housework in general after how the last few weeks have been.  There is a long list of things waiting for me, but housework is so patient, it always waits.

Sometimes I get a little flustered by people around me who somehow have gotten the mistaken idea that my life is perfect.  It's weeks like these that make me want to call them up and give them a laundry list of the things that aren't quite so perfect so maybe they'll have a little perspective.  Obviously that's not really appropriate, but I have those conversations in my head sometimes when I'm feeling particularly ornery.

Really, I know that I have it pretty darn good.  Everyone has their good days and bad, and we have had a few bad lately.  But even the bad days are filled with plenty of good when I stop to add it all up.  My sister-in-law made a wise observation that maybe those lives that seem so perfect seem that way because we're enduring our trials well instead of moping and complaining all over the place.  I think she may be on to something.

Happy May Day/mayday.  I've had a few things on my mind lately I hope to write about soon.