Thursday, February 11, 2016

Little C is 2!!!!!

Last Saturday, Baby C (or really now Little C) turned 2.  These are pictures from my phone that I could easily upload.  I have dozens more on my fancy camera.  I will upload them soon, but they are big and I haven't found a way to make them smaller (yet).  My old program did it easily until I upgraded it and then it didn't.

These pictures are of him eating his birthday breakfast (donuts), smiling for his "number day" picture with a cheesy grin, decorating his brownies with me (he really wanted to!!), then eating said brownie.

His day was very low-key.  We ate donuts for breakfast.  We opened gifts.  It was a chilly day and he LOVES the park, so we went to McDonald's to play on the playplace.  We thought if we went at 3:00  it would be pretty empty, but it was super busy.  My sister and her family all came to be there for him.  It was great!  Then, we did homemade pizza (he doesn't like much food, but he does like pizza) and brownies.  It was perfect for him .  (Hopefully I do get the other pictures on the blog!)  C had basketball and K had a solo competition, so they weren't here much, but that is becoming standard these days.

I love this little guy.  I love his laugh.  I love that he cuddles.  I love that he completes our family so well.  Happy Birthday, C!

Just Life

I am sick.  Blehh!  Sickness really isn't fun, but it does teach you what it is like to be healthy!  I will appreciate tomorrow so much more!

Being sick, I have spent much of the day resting on the couch.  And looking at my phone to keep me entertained.  I realized that 6 years ago today was the big huge snow storm.  I went back on this blog to look at the pictures.  Then, I just had to keep reading.

LOVED it!  I loved seeing pictures of my kids (that have changed dramatically in 6 years!).  I loved reading about CK and seeing our love develop.  I loved it so much.  I have done a disservice to myself and others by not keeping this blog better up to date!  Again, I want to try harder.

I did work on and order a photo book with our January 2016 pictures.  I intend to make a book each month.  The kids absolutely love to go through them.  I do, too!  And, I love pictures sooooooooooooooo much, but where are most of them?  Hidden somewhere in a digital format.  Pre-digital, I was very good at printing photos, dating them, and putting them into albums.  I even dipped into scrapbooking.  I decided it wasn't really my thing.  I am not really crafty, but it didn't hurt to try.  But, with digital, I became the mom that took multiple photos of the same event and then couldn't choose which one to use and then just gave up because the thousands of photos can be overwhelming.

I did not do New Year's Resolutions this year, but beginning in December, I choose to focus on three goals to help make me a better person:

  1. Drink more water (did great at the not so great.)
  2. Work on pictures and make them a priority (I did, in fact, work on and order a book!)
  3. Don't complain.  (I think I wrote already about this...I have discovered that I am a closet complainer!  Time to change!)
So, the cool thing about this life...we can always start new.  We can always be better.  We will always fall, but we can always try again.  What an incredible blessing!

One last thing, while reading 2010 posts regarding CK, I mentioned some of his awesome qualities.  I also admitted that we were still courting, but I knew that he would continue to treat me well after being married.  He totally has!!  He gives me the very best that he has to give.  Every day.  Every minute.  I always come first.  I didn't know that this was possible.  But, it is not only possible, I have it!  I am so blessed!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Family scripture picture

So, I have this fancy schmancy new camera that is amazing and a fancy schmancy new laptop that is also amazing.  But, no matter how I try I cannot figure out how to get my pictures to work on my laptop.  I load them and they are put somewhere that I cannot access.  I cannot save them at a lower resolution.  I really am at a loss and it is very frustrating.

But, I did finally get this picture uploaded on on the blog.  Woot Woot!  Our primary has asked each family to take a picture of their family doing family scripture study.  We study every day, but it has been hard to add taking a picture to the study time.  Finally, we did it last night.  Sadly, A isn't with us so our family is not complete, but this is what our study looks like much of the time.  The calm toddlers is deceptive, but other than that, this is how we roll at our home.

I love that we study the scriptures together.  We do three days a week of Doctrine and Covenants and four days a week of Book of Mormon.  We are almost done with both, but we will just continue the Book of Mormon reading by starting again as we always do, but we will also read the New Testament.  I am soooooooooooooooo excited about this.  I long to know my Savior more and have my kids know Him more too.  This is a great way to do it.  :)

It would take a while to catch up on all that goes on in a busy household of 8, but a few things include...V cut her own hair necessitating a haircut, C is playing basketball and last Saturday they only had 5 players, so he played all of two back to back games, Little C will turn 2 in 12 days.  Crazy!

We are in the middle of trying to schedule many things.  The planner part of me is screaming in agony that we just cannot get things planned (trying to work with many others).  But, this will all work out too.

I am happy.  Life is good.  I love my life.  I love my family.  I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  I love my home.  I love my cars.  I love my relative good health.  Life is good.  I am blessed.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Mom of six

Yep, here I am again...more journaling than posting pictures for posterity.

Being a mom of six means a lot of crying and screaming, at least at my house.  Tonight was even more than most nights.

CK, K, and C are at the temple.  A is in St. Louis.  I was here tonight with J, V, and Little C.  And...there was a lot of screaming.  I think V and Little C are just exhausted.  We had my nephew, E, here today.  They had so much fun and it was awesome, but I think their little bodies were just worn out.  In addition, we ate after CK, K, and C left so dinner was later.  That didn't help.

Sometimes I truly wonder what I am doing being a mom at all, let alone to six kids.  I love each of them so very much and my heart is overflowing with gratitude that I get to be their mom, but I still wonder if I am up to the task.  At the same time, my heart aches that they are growing up.  I am so proud of them and pleased with their choices in life, but the thought of them leaving home is already leaving a non-fillable void.  I am trying to remember "The Best is Yet to Be."  This means that as I lean on the Savior, the years in front of me will be amazing.  Life with children-in-laws and grandkids will be glorious.  I think I will always miss the littles at home, but I will also be grateful that I don't have nights of screaming sometimes.  It is all up to me and my attitude.

I am currently downloading pictures to my computer.  :)  Maybe next post will be more fun!

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Follow Up from Yesterday

Here I sit...two days in a row at my computer!  Wowzee!

I still haven't put pictures on the computer...but that will come...hopefully.

As a follow-up from yesterday's post, I just feel so blessed by the Spirit witnessing to me that indeed The Best is Yet to Be.  When I see my failings and I have regrets, I just remember that I am a work in progress and the Best is Yet to Be!

For instance, I regret not spending time with our beautiful Christmas Tree.  Silly, I know, but it was in the piano room and life was crazy and we rarely gathered near it at all.  But, as I was feeling down about this, I remembered that the Best is Yet to Be and I can be better next year.

I also had the opportunity to go to a dear dear friend's son's baptism this morning.  As we waited for the ward in front of him, they played some Mormon Messages.  I didn't do well this year at sharing those on Social Media.  I have a strong testimony of Jesus Christ.  I just didn't share it this year very well.  But, as I again felt regret and remorse, I remembered that the Best is Yet to Be and I know that I can be better.  Not all at once, but little by little.

The Spirit that has accompanied these realizations helps me remember that this Eternal Progression is all because of our Savior.  His atonement helps me to become better and to be more than I ever could be on my own.

What a great way to begin 2016!

I have no doubt of the Lord's tender mercies for all.  I know that includes me and I feel blessed to know this.

So, I may not have any pictures up yet....but...The Best is Yet to Be!  :)

Friday, January 1, 2016

Welcome, 2016!!!

I haven't blogged in a very long time.  I wanted to say forever, but that would definitely have been an exaggeration.  I take so many pictures and I want to post them, but the fact is....I don't.  I hope to be better, but my 24 hours I have been given are very precious and many times the time is used elsewhere.

But, today I am so filled with joy that I had to write and document it.  You see, five years ago yesterday, CK asked me to marry him.  Six years ago yesterday, my divorce was final with XDH.  And, six years ago this month, the Lord showed His tender mercies to me by way of an Ensign article by Elder Holland.  It was entitled, "The Best is Yet to Be."  Wow!  It was so perfect for a gal that was just divorced and looking to the future with faith.  I reread it today and I am amazed at the wisdom therein.

Looking back, I see all the ways I have been taken care of.  I have been and continue to be blessed beyond measure.

Looking forward, I see all the blessings on the horizon.  I see many joys ahead.  I know that there will be bumps in the road and sorrows as well, but with faith I can look forward.

One thing that reviewing this article today taught me is that the life I have now, while not perfect, is not something I should dwell on "what should have been" or "what could have been."  I absolutely hate the separation of our family from each other because four of our children we share with their other parents.  I hate it.  In fact, right now my heart is breaking because A will go back to her other home early tomorrow and I likely won't see her this time for the longest period yet (probably 6-7 months!).  And, K, C, and J are already gone for time with their dad.  But, as I listened to the Spirit while reading this article, I realized that I cannot focus on what I lack, for that is looking back, but instead, I have to focus on the future and have faith in the Lord's knowledge of me and His wisdom for my life.

We have had a great Christmas with all six children together.  Blessings have abounded and my heart has been full.  In fact, a week and a half ago when A got here, we knelt as a family for family prayer.  It was late.  The kids were tired.  The Spirit was so strong at that time, however.  I know it was witnessing the completeness of us all being together.

I do not have many resolutions this year.  I have so much that I want to improve, but I want to allow the Lord to mold me and help me to improve what He wants me to.  I feel that I can do this better by not forcing myself into such a routine that I cannot be flexible enough to listen to the Spirit.  So, I do not know if I will blog more this year.  I do know that I love rereading what I documented before using this medium.  My kids love reading my blog books and looking at the pictures.  Hopefully I can make the time to do this.

For now, however, my goals I began in  December will be my resolutions.  I limited myself to three:

  1. Don't complain.  See the good in every situation and embrace it.
  2. Drink more water.
  3. Take care of pictures (print, blog, organize).  They are just sitting there in digital no-man's land.  That is not why I take them.  
And so, welcome 2016!  I am excited to see where this year will take me and my family.  I am so in-love with CK and I am in awe of the wisdom of the Lord to bring us together.  I had no idea that such happiness was possible.   I have six kids that are my life, my pride and joy, my struggles, and make my calling as a Mom paramount.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

What matters most

I just posted this on Instagram, but I wanted to remember it so I will blog about it also.
Sometimes in situations like this I find myself thinking about how much is not being accomplished.  But then I think about what IS being accomplished. I know these moments are fleeting. They already are. So, my arm hurts and my list is not getting accomplished, but my heart is happy because I get to cuddle my son this afternoon.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

General Conference - October 2015

Last weekend was General Conference.  What a spiritual recharge!!!  It, like always, was amazing.  I found answers to my questions and feel rejuvenated for the months to come.  I look forward to studying the words of the prophets throughout these months.

C had a band competition and was gone the entire day on Saturday.  We sure missed having him here.

It was fun to see how excited V was for General Conference.  She had no clue what it was, yet she was so excited and happy and could not wait for each session to begin.

During this conference, we had three new apostles sustained.  Over the last six months, President Packer, Elder Perry, and Elder Scott all passed away, leaving three vacancies to be filled.  I felt the Spirit testify that these new apostles were indeed called of God.  I am grateful for the Lord's plan in taking care of us.

Because I have had such issues publishing pictures to my blog, I am not going to add pictures this time, but I still want to document the things that we each noted.

So, in no particular order (other than this is the way they are placed around my room):

Elder Cook:
CK:  Righteous attitudes and conduct lead to happiness
Me:  Self-control is like a muscle - the more you use it, the stronger it gets
K:  Self- Control is necessary for progression and I'm expected to plan and prepare.
J:  Keep the sabbith (Sabbath) day holy.

Elder Bednar:
CK:  Physical limitations can help us prioritize our lives.
Me:  When you cannot do what you have always done, then you only do what matters most.
K:  Limited stamina clarifies priorities and We have these leaders in order to receive a sincere witness of Him.
J:  Pary (Perry), Scot (Scott), Pacer (Packer) and more had powerful infuints (influence).

President Eyring:
CK:  As we respond to the promptings of the Spirit, they will come more frequently.
Me:  Make a constant quest for the Spirit to be with us.
K:  Treat moments of inspiration like the seed of faith. and Confirmations of truth come through the Holy Ghost.
C:  Act on promptings.  Just do it.
J:  Holy Gost (Ghost) is awesome.

Elder Oaks:
CK:  The Savior knows and understands our pain and affliction because He experienced it.
Me:  Savior provides us with strength we need to overcome mortal challenges.
J:  Jesus helps you thro (through) trils (trials).

Elder Holland:
CK:  Nothing comes closer to the love of the Savior than the love of a mother.
Me:  Behold thy mother.
K:  There is no way we can understand the love of the Lord.
J:  Mothers are awesome, epeshily (especially) R______ K_______ (He put my name down!).

Elder Renlund (new apostle #3):
CK:  Our callings are about those we serve.  We must see them through God's eyes.
Me:  This calling is about the Lord, His work, and His children.
K:  Callings are about fulfilling the Lord's purpose.  and  Plead with God to have more love.
C:  We must see through Heavenly Father's eyes to have the true love of Christ.
J:  God is real.

Elder Hales:
CK:  Seek out and listen to wise counsel.  Prayerfully choose mentors.
Me:  Lord knows your desires and loves you and has a plan for you.
K:  Let yourself be led. and What can I strengthen in myself so I can strengthen others?
J:  Be careful who you date.

President Monson:
CK:  Speak with tolerance and kindness.  We will be different people because of our goodness.
Me:  We need to qualify to be lights to the world.  We will be different.
K:  Faith and doubt cannot exist together. and I will be different because I avoid degrading remarks.
C:  Be an example in actions and words.  Have charity.
J:  We are difrint (different) then people who are not in are (our) relishin (religion).  We need to set an example.

Elder Ballard:
CK: No one achieves exaltation without the Atonement and the teachings of the Gospel.
Me:  Lord's servants help us to avoid obstacles that are spiritually life threatening.
K:  Christ is waiting and willing to help.  and  God guides us in the way He has always done.

Elder Anderson:
He spoke in the priesthood session, so we did not do the stickies.

Elder Christofferson:
CK:  Members of the church should minister to each other on a day-to-day basis.
Me:  God's ultimate purpose in our progress.
K:  We are about a relationship too.  and We have a church in order to find conversion to Christ. and He has a church in order to work needful thing.
C:  God uses His church to bless you and people.

President Nelson:
CK:  The church needs women who will courageously defend the family.
Me:  Women have unique influence.  We need women.
K:  Speak up and Speak out in ward and stake councils.  and Know how to call upon God to protect others.  and  Women have been vital in every dispensation.
J:  Woman (Women) are loveing (loving).

Elder Rasband  (new apostle #1):
CK:  God loves us all in spite of our sins.  We need to reach out in love to all people.
Me:  He will serve the Lord with all of his heart, might, mind, and strength.
K:  Serve with everything you have.  and  Remember to be amazed by His love.
C:  Heavenly Father loves you no matter what.
J:  Folw (Follow) the profit (prophet).  Stay firm in the gosbol (gospel).

President Uchtdorf:
CK:  Focus on the simple truths of the Gospel.  Start where you are.
Me:  God did not give up on Moses.  He will not give up on us.  Even when we want to give up on ourselves.
K:  Sometimes you do have to re-learn things.
J: God does not give up.

Elder Stevenson (new apostle #2):
CK:  The fulness of the Gospel to be proclaimed by the weak.  The Gospel is pure and simple.
Me:  Our anchor is faith in Jesus Christ.
K:  The Gospel can be proclaimed by the weak.  and We live in perilous but fulness of times.
C:  The Father loves us because we are His children.
J:  Jusus (Jesus) is are (our) ancer (anchor).

Wow!  It is amazing to type these and feel the Spirit return to bear testimony of the truth that we were taught.  I am so grateful that we are able to gather our children together in our own home to sit at the feet of the apostles.

For me, without looking at my notes, the two things that stuck out to me are:
1)  My MS is such a blessing.  It allows me to focus on what matters most and not overdo it, because I cannot do more.  I think I will get to the other  side and find out that God gave this to me as a blessing, not as a trial.
2)  I need to progress by working on one small thing at a time.  Having a big checklist to improve doesn't work.  Ask "What lack I yet?"  and go forward with faith to work on that answer.  We don't have to be perfect all at once.  It is a progression.  All this I knew and believed, yet it resonated with me this conference.

I love this gospel.  I know it is true.  I know that Jesus Christ lives.  I want to become like Him.  I am a blessed woman!