Sunday, February 28, 2010

Today was Kamden's first day with his new Primary teachers at church. He did FABULOUS! Can I just say what a proud momma I am? That boy has come full circle in Primary! For those of you that don't know already, I'll tell you. Kamden has had a really really hard time behaving appropriately at church since we moved to our ward in January of 2007. He had never had a hard time with Primary before then, but for whatever reason, from the time we moved here until the middle of last year when Dave and I became his teachers. Dave became the Young Men's Secretary in October, so it's just been me since then.

Anyway, he had a small moment of melt-down between Sacrament Meeting and Primary as he realized that I wasn't coming with him, but THANKFULLY his friend Kolton had an empty seat next to him and in Kamden went. We peaked in here and there to see that things were going okay, and I have to say I did cartwheels in my head when he greeted me in the hall and his new teachers had great things to say! Off to a very good start! The prayers of THIS mother have been answered and I am ever, ever so grateful!

Tonight Kamden and Dave made cookies together as an extra treat for being so good at church. They spent some quality time together and the cookies taste amazing! I should also mention how nice it was to attend Sunday School and Relief Society, yet I will miss my little class! Luckily I get to help out in there a few times a month!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Singin' in the WHAT???

As I mentioned in a previous post, I have a new church calling. I am in charge of Relief Society activities (used to be called Enrichment Leader). Tuesday was the first activity and I am so happy with how things went. Like everything I post here, I'm posting this mostly for me, so If you are reading, I hope you don't get bored!

I'm amazed at the very, very direct inspiration that came in planning and preparing the event. And a little shocked by what that inspiration led us to do! Our theme of the night was "Seeking Harmony In The Home"- basically ways to bring more peace and spirituality to any home. We had homemade Bajio Quesedillas for dinner, which were a huge hit, then divided into 3 little mini classes. The classes were all designed to help families have more harmony in their homes. I didn't get to attend the other classes,so I don't know as much about them, but...

The first class, taught by my friend Michelle, taught how to use validating phrases and validating questions with our loved ones. She taught the sisters to listen, listen, listen, and then to understand.

The second class, taught by my friend Stacey, used a rope in many different "tug-of-war" scenarios to teach how families are more likely to achieve a common goal when everyone is aware of what the goal is and when they work together.

The third class, taught by me, was where this blog's title came from. We sang together in the lady's room! We sang, Walk Tall You're A Daughter Of God, Come Follow Me, You Are My Sunshine, and a fun variation on Sweet Hour Of Prayer that I renamed "Sweetily Deetily Hour of Prayer." The sisters seemed to really enjoy the silly setting and singing together. Then I played Michael McLean's song, "Which Part is Mine." (lyrics posted below)

Things went so well with everything! I miss guessed how much time our singing would take and I VERY much overbought food. But overall, I think the most important parts of the evening were well received. The Spirit was there. I think that the sisters were able to take some ideas home and implement them. And they enjoyed each other's company and good food. THANK YOU LORD for helping everything to go so well!

Below are the Lyrics to Michael McLean - Which Part Is Mine and the recipes we used for our dinner. Enjoy!

She was only a Dairyman´s daughter
she was only a child of thirteen
but the stars on the radio brightened her nights with a dream
So she called up her best girl-friend Jenny
´cause she thought they would make quite a pair.
She said let's you and me try to sing harmony
at the ameteur night at the fair.
But she only had a range of an alto,
so the part she knew best went to her friend.
And when Jenny's soprano drowned out the piano
they had to start over again.
And then Dairyman´s daughter would then
say which part is mine, and Jen which part is yours?
Could you tell me one more time I´m never quite sure
and I won´t cross the line like I had before
so please help me learn which part is mine
and which part is yours.

She grew up and got married to Bobby.
Kept him working on his MBA.
They had two little red-head children
and one on the way.
Everybody said she could work wonders
and she wondered what everyone meant
She played so many roles
it was taking it's tole,
and she feared that her time was misspent
so she opened her heart to her husband,
they discussed everything on her list.
From the kids to the job
to her feelings for her Bob,
what it really boiled down to was this.
she said, which part is mine and Bob which part is yours?
let´s review it one more time I guess I´m not sure.
and I won´t cross the line like I had before,
if we just define which part is mine,
and which part is yours.

Every sleepless night knows many mothers
who are wondering if they done alright.
And the dairyman´s daughter knew more than a few of those nights.
Had she given her son too much freedom?
Had she smiled her two teenage girls?
Did she spoiled them too much or not trust them enough
to prepare them to life in this world?
So she opened her heart to heavens
and she spoke of her children by name.
And the prayer that she prayed that her kids would be saved
had a very familiar refrain, she said: Let´s review this again:
Which part is mine God which part is Yours?
could you tell me one more time,
I´m never quite sure and i won´t cross the line
like i had before.
But it gets so confusing sometimes.
Should i do more a trust on divine?
Please just help me define which part is mine
which part is Yours.

Recipes:

For the chicken-
Fill a large crockpot with boneless skinless chicken breasts (we used 6.5 lbs glazed frozen). Add 1 1/3 cups brown sugar, 1 TBSP cinnamon, 2 cans diced green chiles, 1 diced, medium onion, and 1/4 cup water. Let cook ALL DAY (at least 5 hours) on high. Use tongs to shread before serving.

K- so here's how I like it best:
Cook a tortilla on one side and turn. Add shredded cheese in a thin layer to the cooked side while the other side cooks. Put the warm, shredded chicken on 1/2 the tortilla and fold over, flattening a bit as you do. Score into bitesize pieces with a pizza cutter. 1/2 cup beans, 1/2 cup rice, a little lettuce, pico, and sour cream, perhaps a little guacamole.

PERFECT!

The lemon water recipe is actually Tena Winterton's- I couldn't find mine, and hers was just about perfect, but it's a large recipe.
5 cups sugar
2 TBSP lemon extract
2 TBSP citric acid
2 bags ice
2-3 gallons water

Thanks to everyone who helped make the night turn out well!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Family... (amily-amily!)

My family and I have the blessing of having my mom live in an apartment in our basement. Her birthday was Friday. To my surprise, yesterday after church, my brother and his family came to visit to celebrate her birthday a few days late. Then a little while later my sister and her children came and then finally, my baby brother Bobby. We didn't know that any of them were coming, but it sure was fun to have them here!

Bobby and Boston played some Taylor Swift songs on the guitar while everyone sang along (Boston's getting pretty good, but Bobby is a good mentor!) Then Boston, My mom, my sister and my sister-in-law, 8 nieces, and I all sang "Walk Tall You're a Daughter of God" together. WOW! We were a pretty neat little choir! That was really fun and I felt the Spirit pretty strong!

It was about 9:30 or 10 before everyone had gone home, but it was a fun night. In the end, there isn't much better than spending time with the people that really matter. Now off to recover from the weekend!

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Paxtonator!

My little guy is 11 months old and is soooo much fun! He's not only begun walking, but has begun BOUNCING! Sadly he's been sick for the last week or so, but is FINALLY feeling better the last few days. I'm so relieved! I MISSED his sweet personality and watching him play and enjoy life! Here's some video clips I shot of our new favorite game. You HAVE to watch his toes, it is soooo cute on the first clip when he wiggles them! WARNING! I sound like an absolute IDIOT on the video. The cutest of babies seem to have the ability to turn ANY adult into a blubbering idiot! video

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Kenzadoo! I love you!

Kenzington is our spunky, sweet, 2 year old daughter. She is a girl that is full of hugs, full of fun, and full of opinions! This morning she wanted to wear her yellow "Dancy-Dias," which consists of a bright yellow leotard and skirt that we found at a thrift store. It looks like it escaped from a 70's Sunshine Generation performance. If we were staying home today and doing nothing, I would have happily allowed such a psychotic wardrobe choice. We're NOT staying home and doing nothing, and there was NO WAY in China I would have allowed this selection to be worn! All that I could do, short of using Satan's tactics, was to find an alternative choice of clothing, leave it in her presence, and walk away. This left her throwing a fit to herself, which eventually became boring and she resigned to getting dressed for the day.

Kenz climbed into our bed with us about 4 am. This is not ideal for anyone except Paxton, who sleeps much better when we don't protest Kenzington's arrival between us because then she doesn't awaken him with her rebuttal. Because Pax hasn't felt well the last two nights, Kenz was allowed to stay. Luckily she kept her elbows, knees and toes (knees and toes!) mostly to herself and we all managed to sleep at least a little while longer. As I sat in the rocker feeding Paxton this morning, Kenzington, aka Dora the Explorer (who is also Diego's best helper in rescuing animals) "accidentally" dropped items off the edge of our bed and then would declare, "I HAVE to help them! Hold onto my toes, Daddy!" The process of Dave holding her foot while she heroically hung from the bed, almost standing on her head and grabbing the item never becomes old to her. I have visions of her growing up and doing much for humanity. She's so fun!

It's fun to observe my children and think about who they have become and think about what they are becoming. Right now, little Miss America is OH-SO-VERY 2 and ready to take on the world as she knows it! One day she'll be OH-SO-VERY 22 and ready to take on the world as she will then know it. I hope and pray that every moment between now and then will prepare her for what is in store! And I hope she'll ALWAYS be as much fun to hang out with (or watch hang off the bed!) as she is right now!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Onward! Ever Onward!

Have you ever had one of those days where it seemed like EVERYTHING went wrong, no matter what your best intentions were? THAT was my day at church today...

I bought Kamden an origami book at DI yesterday, HOPING that it would be something wonderful to keep him quiet, but listening, in Sacrament Meeting. WRONG! And my best efforts to remind him to be good and to put it away during the Sacrament were not helpful.

As the Sacrament was passed, Holden, who was sitting by me, whispered in my ear that "having a little extra breakfast at church was AWESOME!" NOT what this momma, that tries hard to teach her kids what the Sacrament is about and why we go to church wanted to hear. It gets better. I had a wiggley Paxton on my lap... As I tried to micromanage my children's behavior, Paxton wiggled, and the water came... I carefully held the Sacrament tray from the bottom because it was my best option. Holden attempted to keep his cute little Sacrament cup just as Paxton wiggled and Holden resisted my urges to put it in the tray. Have you ever witnessed someone DROPPING the Sacrament tray? Well, I guess it more or less slid against the back of the bench in front of us moreso than dropped. In all my nearly 33 years of life, I have never witnessed it before today. I don't know if I thought it was possible! Let me promise you, it is. Do you know what happens AFTER someone drops the Sacrament tray??? Me neither. I have no earthly idea, because I didn't stay in Sacrament meeting right then. All I know is that after Holden and I returned 5 or so minutes later, things seemed fairly normal.

What do you do in those moments??? I'll tell you what I wanted to do! I wanted to go home and cry! I wanted to leave and not come back! But that is not what church is about and that is not what I am about. Holden and I went and talked quickly about how important the Sacrament is and about how it is THE REASON we come to church. We shared tears and hugs and a prayer, took a quick breath, and went back into Sacrament meeting. It was Fast and Testimony meeting and I prayed, very hard, for SOME way to feel the Spirit enough to be able to move Onward and say what Heavenly Father would have me say about such a situation and about what was in my heart. And that's just what happened. Part of what I said in my testimony was very similar to what I said to Holden. The Sacrament is the most important part. I had not behaved any better during the Sacrament than my children had, all because I was so intent on helping them to behave. And then I sat down. Our Stake President, who happened to be attending the meeting, bore his testimony next and included some encouraging words about our church being for the children as well. Thank you President Hall!

Kamden still was Kamden and Holden still was Holden and Kenzi still was Kenzi and Paxton still was Paxton, and to clarify, NONE of them behaved amazingly well during the remainder of Sacrament, sat up and listened, or helped me feel the Spirit. But Boston listened intently, felt the Spirit strongly, and bore her testimony as well. She gives me hope that ONE DAY my other children will be able to choose the right and act appropriately at church. But for now, they don't seem very capable and if I fuss too much about it, I won't get much out of church or feel the Spirit either.

Kamden had a melt down over crayons or something as church ended. I did my best to ignore it, to stand him on his feet, and to send him to primary where I joined him after a few deep breaths. I am his primary teacher, and those deep breaths are very very necessary sometimes.

I found him, already sitting, singing, and behaving WONDERFULLY! Oh, praise the LORD! Kolton, a friend of his at church, had made him a card and brought him a little gift and that made ALL the difference. The two boys had a little tiff between them last week and this was Kolton's effort to make ammends. Thank you Lord, and thank you Kolton!

Aside from that, the posters and sign-ups I went out of my way to make last night had the wrong date on them. I had actually misunderstood what the correct date was. Guess what. Blue sharpie didn't make them pretty, but oh well.

I guess we hold our heads high and move ONWARD! Ever ONWARD! As we glory in HIS name! I continue to pray that one day my children will be able to choose to come to church to listen, grow, and contribute. But for now, I'm going to worry less about what they get out of it and more about what I do.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Juggling Act

Recently, Dave and I decided that it's time for me to head back to school. I've been admitted to Utah State University for Summer 2010. I am really excited AND NERVOUS about heading back to school. But EVERYTHING points to it being TIME!

With Dave being away these last 2 weeks, I am more grateful for his help than ever before! AND grateful that I have not started back to school YET! I have learned to juggle, and even how to juggle while juggling. But I haven't mastered juggling while juggling while juggling! Hopefully that skill will come soon, however, because I dare say I will need it!

A few of the balls got dropped while Dave was away, at least for a minute or two, so even juggling while juggling is a skill I am going to have to get better at. I think I have managed to pick up MOST of the pieces, and today's the day to pick up the rest!

GOING TO GET MY MAN TODAY! It's too bad that he has guard tomorrow and the next day, but it will be nice to have him to ourselves tonight! Thanks for all you do Handsome Husband! Love you!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Missing My Man!

As I mentioned, Dave's been away with National Guard for about a week and a half now. A week and a half is NOTHING! But a week and a half is long enough for me to appreciate him more and wish he were home in my arms. Here's some of what I miss the most when he's away:

1. HELP! Sad, but true, when you are a parent to 5 young children, run a couple of businesses out of your home, and part time parent to 5 more, extra muscles, drivers, kisser-betterers and tuckers are a God-send. Dave's physical AND emotional support has been missed mucho this last week!

2. Just being by him. Talking to him on the phone is wonderful, but hanging out next to him, even just to watch tv or whatever is 10 times as nice!

3. That body in the bed beside me! Laying on his shoulder as I go to sleep each night. Feeling safe and secure in his arms.

Pathetic, aren't I? I mean it's only been a week! I am so grateful that there are only a matter of days left until he's in my arms again! We have survived many times away from each other including military schools, trainings, and deployments. And all of them have taught us something major. We're better together! Miss ya babe!