Wednesday, October 31, 2007

So Sad.

My sister and her family have been visiting from out of state for the last week. They left today. I am filled with such sadness for I have such a wonderful sister. I love her. I love her hubby. I love her kids. I will miss her terribly. We had a great time and I will post about it all next post. But, you know when it is the perfect vacation length when coupled with the sadness is the readiness to get back to normal life. We all have been staying up late. Too late. We all have been putting aside the daily necessities to be with our much more important family. So, fun time is is time to get back to regular life.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


A cute moment this morning.
LD loves the bus. He loves it because it magically brings his siblings home to him. This morning early, but after we'd already dropped off K and C at school, LD heard the characteristic bus sounds as the middle school bus came into the neighborhood. He started saying "bu. bu. bu. bu." very adamantly and watched the window until the bus finally came into view. But, no matter how many times I tried to explain to him that it was not K and C's bus, he stayed by the window watching and waiting and loudly proclaiming, "bu. bu. bu." It was too cute. Maybe if I let the big kids ride to school on the bus instead of dropping them off....he would understand that the bus picks up kids not just drops them off.

Now, it is time for the bus to come and, guess what? LD is sleeping. Ugh. He missed his favorite time of day.

Friday, October 19, 2007

A Practically Perfect Afternoon

So, this has turned into such a great afternoon.
  • The weather could not be better. It is sunny, around 75 ish degrees.
  • DH called and took me out to lunch (never mind that the dishes aren't done and that I had to wake up LD when he JUST GOT DOWN FOR A NAP). It is just nice to go out and I definitely don't want to discourage his asking me!
  • I ground my own wheat to make "Friday Sweets Day" Apple-Cinnamon Oatmeal Bars.
  • I cleaned the bathrooms super duper thoroughly (a chore I HATE!)
  • I read LD a bunch of books. How great that he is already a bookworm!
  • I talked to one of my bff's on the phone.

It is just a practically perfect afternoon. Did I mention how much I love Fall?

Random Friday

Life has seemed extra busy lately. I think it is because I didn't do "Errands Day" this week (where I try to combine all errands into one day), so I have been out of the house every day running errands. This leaves me less time at home to accomplish stuff for the house and the clinic and this leaves me frustrated. I guess that "Errands Day" really works for me.

I have also been sick. I am sure I picked up some germies in one of our many stops in San Antonio last week. It isn't too bad. I guess I am fighting it off pretty good, but I am still congested.

I have begun walking with my good friend, JK, again. I love walking with someone. It is so much more fun than by myself. And, while I was really, really good at going walking at 5:30 AM or so during the summer, when school started it just hasn't happened all that much. I also find that while walking together I go farther and longer since I am not constantly thinking of the time and how much I have to do...I am chatting (or sometimes panting) with my friend. Much nicer.

I took the kids to the library and the park last night. This added to the chaos of life, but it was such a beautiful night that we couldn't resist. Here is LD exploring the park.

Speaking of libraries, I go to FOUR different ones on a regular basis! I guess our family loves libraries and books. Two of them are small town libraries that are close to where I live. Two of them are branches of the huge library system in my actual city, although the branches are much further away than the small ones. We had a bond pass to get a library branch near our area about four years ago, but the library is still not built. So, for now...four libraries it is!

Finally, in other news, the clinic is really growing and our family is so blessed. Thank-you all for your prayers as we undertook this scary adventure. I can't express how grateful we are for the blessings we have.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

San Antonio, TX

DH and I took the kids and left for San Antonio, TX this weekend. It was a lot of fun. We left on Thursday morning and had a leisurely drive. We stopped at some outlets on the way, as well as IKEA. We had a lot of fun shopping and we got some extremely good deals as well. The kids loved IKEA since they got to play in the playland while we shopped. We also stopped at the State Capital in Austin. Our hotel (Holiday Inn Market Square) was downtown and even though it was old, it was recently remodeled and our room was gorgeous! The pool was huge and in a courtyard in the middle of the hotel. It was warm enough to swim, although cool when you first got in. We went swimming and then headed down to the riverwalk. The bell hop/concierge guy took us in the hotel van. He took us by surprise at the offer and we left without the camera or a stroller. It was still beautiful there at night. We came back on the trolley...which the kids thought was neat.

The next morning (Fri) we headed out to the San Antonio Botanic Gardens. They were very pretty. They also had a Dora exhibit, which, although my kids protest that they are too old for Dora (and they really are)...they had a great time. Next, we went to the Caverns. It was really cool to be deep in the earth in the caves. K freaked out a little, worried that they were going to fall down on top of us. I had only been in big caves like that once before, when I was about K's age and I remember it well. I hope that K and C do too. It was worth the big price ticket.
After the Caverns, we tried to get back to downtown in time to go to a museum that DH really wanted to see, but we got stuck in traffic and didn't get there in time. We did get to go into a big Catholic Cathedral downtown...I believe they said it is the oldest in North America. It was really pretty and reminded DH of going to mass with his grandfather in Guatemala.

We went back to the hotel to swim and then out for Pizza Hut for dinner. Yummy. Then we went and played in a park downtown at 10ish at night. Stuff we'd only do on vacation! :)
The next morning (Sat) we got up and checked out of our hotel. We had planned on spending all day Saturday at Sea World, but we still had a lot that we wanted to see. We also didn't like that we would only be able to spend one day and that we couldn't do the water park part. So, after MUCH debate, we opted to come back in May for Sea World and continue our San Antonio adventure in different ways this time.

First, we ate breakfast at a yummy Mexican place. Then we went to El Mercado and Market Square. We had the kids' portrait sketched by a caricature artist. It looks pretty cool. Then, we went in down-downtown. There was an art festival going on and the kids got to draw on the street with chalk. That was pretty cool. We then went to the Children's Museum. At first we were so not impressed. But, even though it was older and falling apart in some places, the kids LOVED it and really there was a lot to do and see...more than we originally thought. It was worth going to.
Next we headed back to the riverwalk. We walked for a bit, watched the boats, and ate overpriced ice cream. Then off to the Alamo. We had planned on skipping it this trip, but due to our last minute ditch of Sea World, we went. Thank goodness. They have an annual festival there and had a ton of actors in period costumes. We got to interact with them and it was really cool.
From there we went to our new hotel (Drury Inn). We had heard great things about this hotel and so we opted to spend our last night there, even though it was a little more expensive. They have a "snack" buffet at night that included hot dogs, baked potatoes, nachos, popcorn, all sort of drinks, etc. It was enough for a light meal. They also had an indoor pool, which was disappointingly cold. I didn't even want to get in. DH and the kids did, though, although C got out fast. I thought it was colder than the outdoor pool. There were also a lot of people (one maybe drunk) in the hot tub, which is my favorite part, so I didn't go over there.
The next morning they had a HUGE breakfast buffet. This was one of the reasons we chose this hotel for Saturday we wouldn't have to spend money on Sunday. It had eggs, sausage, biscuits, waffles, yogurt, cereal, oatmeal, toast, bagels, grits, juice, doughnuts, muffins, etc. It was yummy, yummy, yummy.

We left and went to some of the old missions. They were really cool. They were well preserved and it was neat to see what they must have been like so long ago. Then...the drive home.

We had such a great time together as a family. In fact, Little Dan was so sad to see DH and kids go back to school and work on Monday. He walked around the house saying "Pa-pa, Pa-pa, Pa-pa." I love making memories together and I love the break from "real life." I was also glad to see that our animals were all still living when we got back! :)

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

And...we're outta here!

We are headed out of town! I am so excited. This will be a great family vacation. We are so in need of one. The clinic is a lot of work and DH definitely needs some R&R. We all do! We can't wait. So...until we're back...adios!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

General Conference

I always love General Conference. I love hearing the words of the prophets. I love the wonderful feeling it is to have that burning desire to be a better person and to have the confidence to know that I can.

Some of my favorite/most inspiring moments from this conference are:
  • Spencer J. Condie: "And God remembered Rachel." And he will remember me and you and everyone. Is anything too hard for the Lord?
  • Elder Uchtdorf: "Have we not cause to rejoice?"
  • Keith Hilbig: We live far below our priviledges when it comes to the Holy Ghost.
  • Elder Eyring: "Have I seen the hand of God reaching out to touch me/my family throughout this day?" Ask it. Then record the answer.
  • Sister Julie B. Beck: Be a "Mother who knows!" Conserve limited strength to maximize influence where it matters most.
  • Elder Bednar: We need BOTH clean hands AND a pure heart.
  • Elder Scott: Righteous character is most important (more than what we own, our education, etc.). First faith then character then more faith than fortified character and so on.
  • Elder Zivic: "Choose to be someone out of the ordinary."
  • Elder Oaks: It is not enough that something is good. It must be better than good. Are we amusing ourselves to (spiritual) death?

I felt inspired and guided with each and every talk. These are just a few that stood out to me. Last week's Relief Society broadcast was also excellent and really inspiring. Who can doubt the truthfulness of the gospel, the reality of our Savior, Jesus Christ, or the fact that we have prophets on the earth when we have been so wonderfully taught? It is by their fruits ye shall know them and the fruits of the spirit are so plentiful at conference. How blessed I am. How blessed we are!

Friday, October 5, 2007

I am honored.

So, my good friend, txmommy, gave me this wonderful award this week. I think it is so ironic...since she is one of the first people I would have thought of to give this award to. She is always so positive, supportive, uplifting, and an all around good friend. I am so lucky to have her as my friend and my visiting teachee.

In blogger tradition, I nominate Suzanne, who ALWAYS lifts me up, particularly on Gratitude Tuesday; Nikko, who is a RLF that does anything and everything for me; and Kathleen, whose insights always help me keep life in perspective. And...I was trying to avoid it as I didn't know if it violated some blogger code of ethics,...but also my dear, dear sister, who truly is my best friend in the world...someone who ALWAYS lifts me up and knows all the bad about me and loves me anyway.
I guess it is always good to be lifting up rather than tearing down. You never get the seconds back. Make the most of each one. And, while I am waxing sentimental, I read a great quote today (from my favorite book..wink, wink)..."Keep asking yourself, "What do I really want?" When you are tempted to watch junk, eat junk, think junk, or speak junk, remind yourself that your decisions today will determine your reality tomorrow." ~Hannah Keely, Total Mom Makeover.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

"Little Plates" versus "Big Plates"

I have been in one of those blog-funks. What happened, actually, is that I wanted to put a picture of LD from when he was born on his birthday post...but for some reason I moved the birthday files in my computer and I can't find them. I know they exist...but I haven't had time to search the great abyss of my computer. So, then, I felt like I couldn't post anything else until the birthday one had pictures and was published. I still have to write about camping last weekend and LD being sick.

But, first, another reason that I haven't blogged as much is that I have realized that I have the "small plates of Nephi" and the "big plates of Nephi." My blog is the latter and my small plates were getting neglected. I decided that I needed to be more diligent at writing my more personal feelings and spiritual experiences in my journal. I feel I really need both. I love my blog, but I need to also record how my life has been guided and blessed by a living God, who knows and loves me and some of that is just too personal to post.

So, there you have it. I was gone and now I'm back. :)