Friday, November 14, 2014

Five

Right after we had Nellie, we maybe hadn't left the hospital yet, the husband looked at me and said, "We're not done yet."  Although to me it felt too soon to talk about it, neither one of us felt that our family was complete.  Luckily we had a newborn, and I knew we wouldn't have to think about that for a while, but that simple sentence that we weren't done rolled around in my head for a while.  

--------

Two years passed quickly, and I started to wonder what the future would hold regarding our family size.  It became something I thought about daily and discussed often.  The idea of being done sounded so nice, but still never felt quite right.  I became anxious, feeling like if our family really wasn't complete, I wanted to get the show on the road.  The husband reminded me that I would be happier with the right timing then just hurrying to get that baby here.  I knew he was right, but the topic still weighed on my mind daily.  

--------

Mid-September I had several days in a row that felt like the ultimate in contentment.  I am not sure that I'll ever forget the moment I was driving down the road, the warm sun beating in the windows, all the kids in the car, and feeling the most overwhelming sense of peace.  I felt the love of God deeply, and my heart was calm.  I knew that whatever was happening with our family planning, it was in His hands, and everything would be just as it was supposed to.  The feelings of peace and love lasted for a few days and I soaked them up.  Writing about it makes it feel trivial, but it was a sacred time for me that I don't want to forget.  

-------

As October general conference weekend approached I thought about the October conference 3 years ago when I had just found out we were pregnant with Nellie and heard a message that spoke right to my heart.  I found myself wishing for that same experience this time around.  October conference came and went without that experience. 

-------

I was sitting in a late night meeting two days after conference and couldn't keep my eyes open.  I was tired to the bone and realized I might need to take a test.  Wednesday I went to the grocery store after I took Charlie to school.  The immediate positive came, and I tried to call the husband.  He didn't answer, so I texted him a picture of the test.  I'm not sure the last time I got a faster call back when he was at work.  We had a sweet conversation about how surreal this seemed and how excited we are.

-----

We took a trip to Boise for fall break and decided to tell the kids before we left.  I knew the odds were good I wouldn't feel good while we were gone, and I was ready to share the news with them.  Their reaction was the best.  They all ran around the house singing "we're having a baby" and haven't stopped talking about it since.  Nellie is insistent that it's a girl and doesn't want to think about the possibility of a boy baby.  Watching my kids excitement has been the best.  They need one more sibling in the mix.  

The last little while has been full of nausea and naps and wrapping my head around having 5 kids.  There is not the same reception to #5 that there is to #1 (not that I'm expecting it), and that same judgment that I was worried about with #4 seems multiplied with #5.  It's not about anyone else, truly, but I still worry that I'll really be able to manage 5 kids in a way that I will feel good about.  It feels like a more personal pregnancy, somehow more reverent as I'm trying to focus on what is right for our family instead of what others may think.  I have always said that I need to receive a very clear "done" when our family is complete, and I'm very hopeful for that feeling this time.  In the mean time, I'm trying to embrace all the parts of being pregnant for (hopefully- fingers crossed) the last time.  I don't feel good, but I know it will pass.  I'm exhausted, but I know it's just preparing me for the long nights ahead.  I'm looking forward to feeling the baby move and having the big ultrasound.  I'm hopeful that nesting will kick in and motivate me to get things done here that I've been meaning to do for months- it's time for some pictures on the walls.  I gave into maternity pants at 6 weeks.  I'm 10 weeks today, 1/4 of the way done.  I know that even though pregnancy feels long, it won't last forever, and I might even miss it someday. In the mean time I'm looking forward to June.  Welcome to our family, #5.    

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

a recipe for a Wednesday

I buy bananas almost every time I grocery shop, but I don't remember the last time I actually just ate a banana.  Their fate is always smoothies or muffins at my house.  I had a request for my banana muffin recipe today and thought I'd share it here while I was already typing it up.  My kids love these, and when I have a lot of bananas I double the batch and freeze half for quick breakfasts.

1 c. sugar (I usually cut this by up to half)
2 1/2 c. flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg (I've omitted this when I'm out without a problem)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 c. oil (I often use canola, but they are delicious with coconut oil or butter, and I've also subbed applesauce for the oil although it decreases the banana flavor)
3 eggs
2 c. mashed bananas
1 tsp vanilla

Combine dry ingredients.  Add wet ingredients.  Bake at 350 for approximately 20 minutes or until golden brown.  This can also be made in loaves, bake in 2 greased loaf pans for 1 hour.  

Sunday, July 6, 2014

One Step Enough

I am a planner.  I love doing research, fine combing the details, and planning things to perfection.  In some instances it's great.  Trips can be well-orchestrated.  Parties can be pulled off without a hitch.  Day-to-day living is a tad bit messier.

A few weeks ago I was feeling really frustrated about events I knew would be happening sometime, but they're out of my control and I have no idea if or when they will come to pass.  I was driving home and suddenly the words to "Lead, Kindly Light" were filling my ears and my heart.  "Keep thou my feet, I do not ask to see the distant scene, one step enough for me."  These words brought tears to my eyes and spoke peace to my heart.  I usually feel like a person full of faith, but I realized my faith had been lacking in regards to the timing of things to come.

Waiting can be hard.  It is difficult to operate on someone else's time table.  When I realize that the timing of the One I'm waiting on is perfect, it makes things a little more bearable.  Over the past few weeks I've still found myself with a little bit of stress about the unknown, but I've been reminded that one step is enough.  I need to focus on the here and now instead of worrying about the coming tomorrows.  Heaven knows there's still plenty in the here and now for me to worry about.  :)

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day

Lately I've felt like if I had a boss in my job as a mom, there is a good chance my job would be on the line.  I'm stretching and growing in ways I haven't before, and it's not always comfortable.  I am in the middle of some hard work, and not just the physical demands of motherhood.  It's the soul work that is the most demanding.  

In the middle of it all, I see the beauty.  I think about conversations with Charlie about answered prayers.  I open sweet cards from Sam telling me how amazing I am.  I watch Addie orchestrate grand performances and work so hard to be helpful.  I give in to Nellie's demands of "lap, book" knowing that some day she won't be by my side.  

I am blessed beyond measure to have this job.  It is what I would choose a million times over.  But I'm also at a point right now recognizing what I should have learned a while ago: if I want to take care of these beautiful kids and my amazing husband, I have to take care of myself.  It is hard for me to admit that, but at the same time it's kind of empowering.  It's ok for me to make myself a meal and sit and eat it without interruption.  It's ok for me to read a book that doesn't begin with once upon a time.  It's ok for me to take a walk without a stroller.  It's ok for me to leave the house without kids and go somewhere besides the grocery store.  I've come to understand this over the past few days, so now I get to begin to put it into practice.  I'm hopeful I can find a balance. 

I am so grateful for the times I've been dedicated to writing.  I've read through my posts tagged motherhood over the past few days and learned so much.  There were forgotten events that I was glad I'd recorded, lessons I used to know that I'd somehow lost site of, and quotes that hit me again as I re-read them. I need to write more regularly- it's a blessing to me.  

Happy Mother's Day.  I'm sure this is not the most inspirational post around today- for a few of those, read my archives.  ;)  In the mean time, I'm in the trenches, but I'm so glad to be there.  

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Absent

I haven't tried to be absent from this space, it's just happened.  I hate looking back at chunks of missing time with no record of our lives.  We just lived them.  I suppose those months of missing entries can tell me some things about what must have been happening- obviously it was too much busy, and writing about it took a back seat.  But I'm ready to write again.  It's good for my head and my heart.

Lately I've been in the middle of some growing as a mom.  It's the kind of growth that makes me feel like I'm not only failing as a mom, but I'm failing my children.  Deep down I know that neither of those things are true, but I also know that if I don't give this job my best efforts they could both become true.  Days seem so long, sometimes.  Over the weekend, I read a thought on Easter that really struck me.  "The world's best and worst days were only 3 days apart." Such a great sentiment for one of my most loved holidays, but also such great perspective for the trenches of motherhood.  Recently I've felt like I've had some of the worst days of motherhood.  Reading this helped me realize that just because one day was the worst doesn't mean the next day couldn't be the best.

Writing feels rusty.  But I want to come back.  There is life to catch up on documenting and things to keep track of moving forward.  Onwards and upwards, right?  It's spring, that's a good start.


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