Friday, March 30, 2012

The Supporting Role























A few minutes ago I stood in the dark doorway and said a cheerful, excited good-bye to Scott and Kaden. They are off for a three day trip to Conference. I couldn't be happier for them. I watched their two figures walk up the side walk and get into Scott's truck and as they drove away I wanted to scream,

Wait! Don't leave me here! Take me with you!

Instead I went and sulked in a long hot shower. Do you ever think that your eternal role in life is to support, stay behind, hold up the fort when others leave it and heck...hold up the fort no matter what?

Well mine is,

and I couldn't think of a better place to be. It's not glamorous but it has millions of hidden blessings if you can only let your heart see them. Last night Branson and the neighbor kid rigged a dolly to the back of a bike with a rope, it was dark, a sharp turn was made and Branson's knee skidded across the road. He laid there whimpering and didn't move until I walked down there and scrapped his huge 9 year old body off the road. I liked that. The boy needs me and I was there.

Yesterday when I was in the bathroom, Ella decided to take Cali out to swing. I heard the sure sounds of a hurt baby wafting in from the open back door and I went sprinting for my life. I found Cali flat on her back under the swings gasping to regain her breath. I ran her inside, retrieved her passie and blanky and then we sat in the rocking chair for a long time. I rubbed her back and waited until all the residual crying hiccups had finally settled and when she was as good as new, she squirmed down and toddled off. I liked that. She needed me and I was there.

This morning Kaden held my hand during our prayer and yesterday I laid by Ella and sang her "I know an Old Lady that Swallowed a Fly," like a hundred times. I liked that too.

In a few hours I will pack up and trek off to the school to see Brylee in a little school play. She couldn't sleep last night for all the excitement. I will be the nerd parent that is taking tons of pictures like my daughter is some kind of famous actress at a fancy premiere. And guess what, I will like it because she needs me and I will be there.

I don't mind playing the supporting role. It's not the spot light that's for sure. A lot of times it's the unseen and the unknown force making all the rest look easy. But it's not easy and when I got to the shower this morning, there was a twinge of sad, that I will be home doing laundry while they are enjoying a great vacation. Because I am human and I have a human heart that sometimes feels sorry for it's self. I'm just glad that, that human heart is pounding away with gratitude that it CAN work and serve and do laundry and rock babies and scrape injured boys off the road after a wreck on their contraption.

Cause I like that too.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Good Things

GOSH! as Napoleon would say. I have these lofty goals of trying to write everyday cause heaven knows I could, but then it's like noon already and the words are still swimming in my head instead in a post for posterity and then I think something like, "oh well no one is reading anyway", and then I think but someday maybe my great, great grand daughter will be in desperate need of knowing what happened in my life today and then, well here I am.

We have had a few really good stuff going on lately. Good thing huh, since we've had a few really crappy things going on too.

Yesterday, Scott, Kaden and I got up at 4am. Scott and Kaden were all showered and clean ready to head to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. Kaden's first time. I was so happy for Kaden that I just could not stay in bed. I helped him button that stubborn top button and I helped him comb his hair. We had talked at length the night before about what a special service Baptisms for the dead are, but while I helped him, I continued to whisper sacred things into his ear.

I just love the gospel and I love that Heavenly Father has provided a way for ALL of his children to return to Him. I feel that it is a awesome and wonderful blessing that he lets us, his imperfect children, help Him in this work. When Kaden was finished getting ready, they were running a few minutes late. Scott started darting around searching for his wallet that seemed to have disappeared out of no where. His reccomend was in it and he would not be able to participate at the temple with out it. I said a quick prayer and afterwards Kaden said,

"Dad, I know I saw it somewhere."

When he said that, I knew that Kaden had only been in his room, my bathroom and the garage. Since Scott had already checked the whole house I said,

"Check the garage."

The wallet was found, a prayer was answered and my two handsome guys were off. They had a wonderful experience and I am so glad they got to share that together.



































Scott has been coaching Kaden and Bransons football team. He is so good at it. It is a huge time commitment and to make up for the days he has to come home early for practice he has been going to work before the sun rises. Scott is such a devoted Dad and he is a great coach...after losing the first two games they came home Saturday with a BIG win! (Thank-goodness)






































































Brylee may never know just how glad I am that she is mine. Almost every evening she gathers up Cali and takes her outback to play. Cali loves Brylee and she loves going outside, so these precious hours of playing are her favorite time of the day. Brylee has become a great baby bather, tender, diaper changer and I am quite certain she is the worlds best big sister.



































And lastly Ella talks alot about some kid named Talon and every time she does I think of this:

Napoleon: Do the chickens have large talons?
Farmer: Do they have what?
Napoleon: Large talons.
Farmer: I don't understand a word you just said.
See, really good things.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Help that is not Helping

It was a Sunday morning way back when Kaden looked something like this...



























that our sliding glass door first shattered into millions of glassy shards. He was young probably three. The twins were fully mobile- one year olds and Scott was away at meetings. I had repeatedly tried to distract Kaden from picking up the babies. He would get them in that toddler head lock and then try to drag them all choked under his arm through the house.

Finally I said something like,"Kaden since you aren't listening to me you need to go be outback by yourself." I placed the little offender just outside the door and moments later...

CRACK.

My sweet, banished, little man had picked up a rock and sent in flying into the glass, leaving our back door a complete loss.

On Saturday Kaden was outback doing yard work for the entire morning. After pulling hundreds of weeds and after Branson had mowed Kaden was edging the yard. I was in the kitchen busy with other things when....

CRACK.

My sweet, hardworking boy's edger had unknowingly flicked up a rock and sent it flying into the glass. He didn't even realize what had happened and just kept right on edging.

So Kaden has busted our door twice now. Once because he was being super naughty and once because he was being super good.

What I learned is, mistakes do not bother me at all when it was unintentional and the result of trying to do good.

And...

Having your kids do the yard work costs about $400 dollars for a new door, paying a yard crew to to do it, only costs about $80 but teaching your kids to work is priceless. Right?

Monday, March 26, 2012

I Left my Heart at the Cabin

Remember how I left my camera at the cabin? I have it back now and looking through its memory has convinced me that I actually left my heart there as well. The cabin is a magical place for children. The world is far, far away there and it must feel to them like a never ending land of tall trees, soft, sifty dirt, sticks, rocks, breezy winds and hours upon, endless hours- of pretend.




































































































This time, a pile of once white and clean socks met their untimely deaths, a group of little girls turned into a wolf pack, marshmallows melted into smores, the tree swing soared kids as high as they wanted to go, rocks were made into masterpieces and the motorcycle never stopped it's trek up and down the road.




































There are hard things about life and there are stressful times full of homework, trial, challenge and concern and those days are exactly what transform a dirty old wash into something beautiful to me. I sat at the top one afternoon while Cali slept back at the cabin. I closed my eyes and just listened to the sound of my children lost in their play.


































It was the sound of peace.


























































I guess I have an unproven theory that if I create enough carefree for my kids that somehow it will all add up and they will be able to pull those happy memories out and use them as a weapon when they go to battle in the war of life.


































We had fun. We made memories and we came home ready to face everything a little better. I am so grateful for those few days of refueling. It left me with piles and piles of laundry and a ton of unpacking and putting away but I would do it a 100 times over.






















See, I told you I left my heart at the cabin.

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Sun will Come Out





































When we were kids one of the songs that I can remember being sung with great frequency around our tiny, kid-stuffed house was,

"The sun'll come out tomorrow..."

All loud and boisterous and Annie like. I even think there is a home video of sorts where my little sister is perched behind the rocking chair, combing through the long balding strands of hair, atop my uncle's head while belting out..

"Tomorrow, tomorrow!"

I haven't watched Annie in some time but last night after talking to my brother-in-law, I was sure that the sun will come out tomorrow. My sister is recovering better than was expected and like always, there is sunshine after the rain.

For me that sunshine came in the two day company of my little niece. Sweet. Sweet. Sweet. We had a time! Long baths where Ella and Brookie were joined by an array of mermaids, we played lots of chase Brookie around the house games, we rocked and snuggled and laughed and jumped on the tramp and I took tons of pictures. We had a good time and I am not sure that Ella will know what to do with herselfez, now that we have said good-bye to her little cousin for the weekend. Ella has been surrounded by good friends.




































Dallin is always just a walk across the street away...























and Brookie has been right here as a full time play resource. As soon as Brookie pulled out of our driveway, Ella asked for a movie. Nothing better to do, I guess since the fun just went home.

And life goes on, right? Bransons eyes are swollen and red, hopefully just from the pollen but it was bad enough that he stayed home today and I will take him to the doctor for a sure diagnosis. Kaden's science project was miraculously finished on time and I have regained my counter top. Brylee my angel girl, spent 1 full hour yesterday entertaining not one, not two- but three little girls in the back yard for me. I swear the heavens parted and a choir of angels were singing praises to her name. (At least they were in my head). We had no, that's right NO extra kids in our bed last night and in less than a week Kaden and Scott get to take a long anticipated trip to Utah for general conference. The boys have a football game tomorrow, which is always fun and tonight Scott and I will sneak away for a fancy date to Home Depot.

Some days life is just plain sad but- stick out your chin and grin because,

the sun will come out tomorrow.

I am sure of it.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Peace











 
Monday night my older sister was flown to the hospital-she is now fighting for her life.

Maybe someday I can write out all my thoughts and feelings on the subject but for now it is so sensitive and private that I am just not ready.  But I feel at peace and I know that a loving Heavenly Father is very aware of us and her and that He is in control. The truths of the gospel are so real in my life and the testimony I have lifts me up and carries me along. I am certain that the Lord loves His children and that He does not leave them comfortless and alone.

Yesterday morning, after a sleepless night, I could only manage to mix up some muffins and get them into the oven. I left them to cook and went back to my room. 15 minutes or so later, Branson came to tell me that breakfast was ready. My sweet, tender boy had scrambled up some eggs, set the table and dished up every ones plate. He had even poured each of us a glass of milk or juice and buttered the muffins. He had no way of knowing of the ache in my soul but I know that the idea to help was put into his good little heart and then he listened and obeyed.

It was a tender mercy wrapped in a message of peace, tied up with love and delivered by my 9 year old but sent straight from above. In that set table I saw the hand of Heaven it's self and in those warm eggs and buttered muffins I felt known. My testimony has never been more strong and I am sure of a Heavenly Fathers certain love for us-His children.

(A few of you have called with concern or sent emails. Thank-you for your love and support. As for me and my family we are doing fine. Although the future remains very unknown, Jaime and her family are surrounded by those who love her and I know they can feel all of the prayers in their behalf. Thank-you so much)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Me and Anne

I am so ready to write my head is just packed full of sentences and words strings that need to be arranged into a post but...

I inadvertably left my camera in the dusty meadow near the cabin. That's right, I did. Worse still, I didn't realize it until I had made the 3 hour journey home and began unravelling the contents of the car. My heart started to pound under my skin and I just knew I had done something awful.
In an act of complete kindness my aunt made the 30 minute drive from her home to the cabin and plucked my treasure out of the desolate meadow for me. And so for the next week, I am left to wallow in my absent minded stupidity.

But oh my- did we have a good time. But I simply can not divulge the goodness until I have the images to prove it. It must wait.

In the meantime, a small update if you please.

I have been sucked in by the story of Anne of Green Gables and I have been neglecting all sorts of duties to spend time in her world.

Plus Cali no longer has any need for crawling she is an official walker. Lets take another look at that...
Kaden had to work on his science experiment over the "break". So is it Spring Break or Spring Work, I don't get it?
My sister-in-law has herself a new twin pregnancy and I have had all sorts of memories come rushing back. I love having twins. Branson and Brylee, my little pair add to the color of life in such a unique way that I can never quite say how blessed I feel to have them.

Ella, bless her heart- is taxing my very ability to be a good person lately. Luckily when she isn't being demanding she is being hilarious and I love that little Highness despite her occasional desire to rule the universe with an iron fist.
Well, the sun is out today and it is coming in my windows with so much beauty and cheerfulness that I am going to get busy and whip my Spring Break soaked house into shape, one of my favorite pass times you know.

I feel a little like Anne today...

What a splendid day! said Anne, drawing a long breath. Isn't it good just to be alive on a day like this? I pity the people who aren't born yet for missing it. They may have good days of course, but they'll never have this one.

Hopefully you do to.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Spring Refueling

There might be a lull in blogging for me after tonight's post. My well is empty and I plan on filling it by taking my kids and going far away from life as we know it. I feel like staying forever but spring break only lasts a week, so forever is out of reach. The only down side is that I wish Scott could escape with us, it makes me heart sick that he cant.

A few weeks ago Brylee drew me a picture. She said it was me, laying in the grass.

"Because you love laying in the grass Mom."
I have had her sweet little illustration at arms reach since she drew it. It reminds me that I am the "eye of the storm" to them, a place of peace in a fallen world. At least that's how they see it.

I crawled defeated into bed Monday night, spent out from a day of keeping and managing and trying to do my best. But my best hadn't been enough. Tuesday was so full of obligation, hurt feelings, meetings and appointments that I was physically aching by bed time. Wednesday was a bright spot as I somehow managed a baby-sitting miracle and was able to attend a field trip for the first time in nearly two years.

Thank-you Melanie, you have been my angel lately.

I cant say how happy it makes me to do things that make my children happy. Fieldtripping makes them happy. It was worth an hour of prep the night before, worth the drive to the sitter, worth packing up half my house so that the baby could be comfortable with out me and worth having to leave breakfast strewn out across the table all day.


























Today I will get to my Sunday obligation that has been put off and tomorrow I get a real live date with my Scotty. A. Real. Live. Date.

After that I will finally gather my five and do what I have been dreaming of for weeks. I will drive away.

Away.

From school, from schedules, from stress. They will be all mine for a few precious days. We are going to sleep all smashed together in one bed, we are going to hike, and be dirty and climb trees and feel the breeze in our hair and the mud in our toes. We'll read and play board games and we'll walk to the meadow and lay in the grass.

Because I love laying in the grass. I will fill up my well with big drinks of their smiles, their messy hair and their childhood. Then maybe...forever wont feel so far out of reach.

How I love my five.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Cleaning Up

So I am not good at very many things but I am pretty good at cleaning up. Anna says I should write about my "cleaning theory" and give some tips, so since I cleaned today...all day...no really all day, I'm ready to write about it.

First off her are my fundamental beliefs about keeping a home. No wait, I have too many. I might have to do it in sections. This section is the "stuff" section.

1. Stuff is just stuff
2. The more "stuff" you have the worse you feel
3. We only use 20% of what we own
4. If everything is special than nothing really is

I live in a small house. I learned a long time ago that the only way to stay sane in a small house is to have very little stuff. You know, make room for the people.

Kids play better and clean better in a room that has

Friday, March 2, 2012

Another Day























Yesterday was as normal as they get. The little girlies and I spent the day cleaning, bathing, eating, cartooning and later- playing with a cousin friend. Cali went down for her usual late afternoon nap, the short kind, just enough to hold her sleepyness off until bed time.

When I went to retrieve my warm Little out of her bed she was mad. I mean MAD. Cried and cried at the slightest indication that her body was about to be removed from it's post on my hip. So there she stayed. I tried to offer her an array of foods and drinks. She would have none of it. For me this reaction of food refusal sends a fire alarm off in my heart. Cali's first indication that things are not right-is to refuse REFUSE food. Last summer I spent an agonizing 9 days forcing droplets of milk down her throat just to keep her alive, not to mention the first 5 months of her life where she only ate on rare occasions. I get nauseous at the memory.

So right, fire alarms in my very soul. After 3 hours of crying, I forced some baby Tylenol and rocked my Little to sleep. And then, I must know-does this happen to you?

My mind began playing that evil trick on me. The one where I become convinced that life is just too good. Convinced that something horrendous is lurking. Imaginary doom becomes something that feels very real and then I spend a sleepless night bouncing out of bed, bolting to her crib-side to check for breaths in the dark of the night, to feel for rise and fall on her back, to reassure my frantic visions that they are wrong. 

From the day I became a mother I have suffered these occasional imaginary fits of panic. The best of which was when I convinced myself on a nightly basis that a robber was going to come though Baby Kaden's bedroom window and silently steal him away. Thus the boy slept in my bed, literally wrapped around my torso for months. I mean I am telling you , I was certain that this WAS going to happen. CERTAIN.

So this morning, while I cooked the waffles for the school kids, a bit of the nights illusions were still lingering and I dropped my butter knife to check the crib.

I opened the door and saw a pair of twinkling blue eyes in the morning shadows.

Another day!

I get another day! Another day of diapers, bottles and messes. Oh hooray for the messes. They are proof that life is good. Another day of cartooning and bib buttoning and snot wiping.

I am telling you, there is nothing better than Another Day.

Don't you agree?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Camera Love

I am having a great time messing around with my new camera, I have already watched my instructional DVD twice. There is so much to learn and so many cool things one can do with a camera. I have had a few people ask me what we decided on. We went with the Rebel. Good old Costco had a coupon and so far, it has been awesome. I know you can get a lot better ones and go all crazy and professional but I just wanted a camera that blasted took the picture when you want it taken. Instead of 12 seconds and 15 flashes after you push the button. Kids move fast people, I needed a fast camera.

How else am I supposed to get Ella jumping off the rocking chair one hundred times?



Furthermore, how would I record how sister love, can go from sweet....
To, sister- is squealing, struggling and fighting to get free and the big one just keeps on forcing the love. Every. Single. Day. All. Day. Long.



And how would I catch the race off the bus that happens on a daily basis as well....
Plus, I want to remember that we had a really fun family night about eating healthier than we have been...

And that Ella has consumed more oranges and more orange juice in her life time than could possibly be good and right for her tiny stomach....
And lastly, my camera gets a lot of Cali. Why? Because she requires no coaxing or bribing or finding. She is readily available and pretty darn cute too.



And there you have it...camera bliss.