Monday, July 15, 2013

When the Heat Breaks

This summer has been hard. Do you remember this post? The day I let go and spilled the beans on the fact that I have a house full of super busy, never sit still, always on the go children. Well I do. And it is hard. Passive is not a personality trait that any one of our 5 children have. More like strong willed, determine, active and strong willed again.

This summer is kicking me around like a soccer ball in Brazil. We have no back yard. Our back yard is a barren waste land where tumble weeds come to die and where the dirt gets so hot that it crackles and breaks into a patchwork of wiggly lines that stretch from one end to the other. We almost never go out there. So when the temperatures reared their ugly heads up into the 100's things got desperate over here.

I mean, I can only pack everyone up and spend the afternoon at a pool so many times before the thought of it starts to make me nauseous. The summer vacations are over and now it's just time to endure the heat and hope we come out alive.

Cue the boredom educed fighting and teasing and then cue me wanting to lock myself in a room and hide from my little (band of gangsters) gaggle. The friends that come over nearly everyday have helped but even I am bored silly and mad that the heat keeps us cooped up.

Needless to say we have had a few moments of pure grumpiness. Brylee even cried the other day while she counted how long until she could go back to school. And in all of Kaden's Home School consideration, Brylee has whispered many a "I am never going to be home schooled." That girl loves friends and parties and even homework as long as it involves chances to write lengthy stories. That's how I know that she is mine.

So you can imagine our thrill last week when, for a few measly hours, the clouds rolled in, the sun took a back stage and the heat--at last--broke.

Life itself came rushing back into our lungs and I pulled the baby from her nap and swept out the door to chase the others down the dirt path to the park. We ran! We slid! We felt the grassy green under our feet and we took in deep breaths of the sweet smell of wet dirt on the side walks and the blazing hot asphalt being dampened by little baby rain drops. Only Arizona people know how good that smells. I was happy as a cherub, we all were.

Good Grief we needed that! (don't mind the black and white, it was dress like a cow and eat for free at chick-a-fila.)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Good Stuff-Summer Edition

I have turned into a very bad blogger. Such a shame, but you know I do have priorities. Just last night I caught Scott scanning through my blog and then he asked me if I had posted anything about "Woody-Buzz, Buzz-Woody". I told him I hadn't.

So to make a very cute and adorable stage short and condensed I will just say that Cali has a major crush on Woody-Buzz, Buzz- Woody. She wants to watch them all day long and she can quote most of all  three movies. "To infinnannbyonnn!" and "tearsanakemybooooot!" It's pretty much to die for and I will be so sad when she moves on from this current obsession.

Nothing in all the world is cuter than how a two year old talks. Mmmmm, so delicious!

We spent a week by the ocean--always a gift. Spending a week at the beach undoubtedly helps me to feel like my big kids are still kids and that I still have plenty of happy summers left to spend with them. It takes so, so, so much work to make it all happen but there are always these magical moments when the work of it all melts away and leaves me alone just long enough to let me see that heaven is right here with us. Getting those glimpses of heaven is what gives me the fuel to pack, lug and drive over and over all summer long.

Right after the beach, I unpacked and did laundry and then I packed everything up again to take the kids to Heber for the Huber family reunion. I LOVE the reunion. I mean talk about a glimpse of Heaven. My Great Grandma Huber (Grandma Two) didn't pass away until after I was married so I was lucky enough to get to grow up with her around. In fact I have a picture of Kaden sitting on her lap as a baby. How many people do you know that have a picture with their Great Great Grandma? The only thing that is hard about the reunion is that it makes me miss my Grandma West so very much. All of her siblings are there playing with their grand kids and I get sad that we are missing out on her! The sting was even a bit stronger this year since it was held the same week as her birthday. But I love being there and getting little glimpses of her expressions and mannerisms in the faces of her siblings.

We stayed long enough to see the fireworks on Saturday night but now it feels good to be home for a stretch.

I also got to take pictures of this cute family.

And my sweet baby Wyatt.

Thank goodness for these magical moments since so much of life is filled with the hard stuff. If there is anything I believe it's that the hard stuff just makes the good that much sweeter. The love of Heaven is all around us even in the middle of trials and challenges, probably even more then. Heavenly Father sends His love and reminders that He is there in so many small ways each and everyday, they are so frequent that I think we sometimes stop seeing them. I am so thankful for a perfect, loving Brother that sacrificed everything for us, His imperfect siblings. Life is beautiful because of Him.

President Uchdorf put it so well when he said,

The lesson here is that if we spend our days waiting for fabulous roses, we could miss the beauty and wonder of the tiny forget-me-nots that are all around us.
This is not to say that we should abandon hope or temper our goals. Never stop striving for the best that is within you. Never stop hoping for all of the righteous desires of your heart. But don’t close your eyes and hearts to the simple and elegant beauties of each day’s ordinary moments that make up a rich, well-lived life.
The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments. They are the ones who, thread by daily thread, weave a tapestry of gratitude and wonder throughout their lives. These are they who are truly happy.

And now if I could just do a better job of writing about all that good stuff!