Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Brian can say NO!


To remind myself:

“We are seeking to build up and to establish righteousness in the hearts of the people, and I want to see you, as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, male and female,

so industrious,

so active in the discharge of your duties as Latter-day Saints,

so humble,

so submissive to the will of the Lord

that you will not have time to spend

in magnifying the weaknesses,

the follies and the faults of your neighbors and of your fellow members of the Church.

The Lord knows there is evil enough said in the world thoughtlessly; and without any particular intent to do wrong, but merely through the weakness of men to talk, talk, talk and say nothing–let us work and not talk.”

- Joseph F. Smith, “Conference Report,” October 1911, p. 10

Love this beautiful message today. I find myself spending a great amount of time TALKING about my own weaknesses, my own follies, my own faults.... that I am not finding myself productive and submissive to the will of the Lord. I am the way I am because he designed me as such. I am here to overcome the weaknesses that I have through diligence, through hard work, through humbly turning myself over to Him.

All the experiences I have are for my good, for my growth.

All the good and the bad that I am subjected to are blessings from him to strengthen my soul and enlighten my wisdom.

I wanted to take this message today and remind myself that it is even in how we talk talk talk about ourselves, our struggles, our trials, how we focus on them....that is not part of His design.

Celebrate who you are today, for I will be celebrating me, all of me, and I hope to overcome the negativity, inadequacy, and loneliness I have in moments where I pick myself apart .

May I be industrious,

May I be submissive,

May I be humble,

May I be active.....and WORK....on becoming

who He sees me

to be...

...in my Father's hands...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Dearest Grandmother,

I miss you. I miss your crooked smile, your endearing eyes,
your enduring hugs, your love for me and your listening ear.

I realize as I miss you that I can
look at a picture and see your smile,

I can try to gaze into your eyes
and imagine you are looking only back at me,

I can read your history
and wrap a blanket around myself
pretending that I am in the warmth of your arms,

and I can close my eyes and
still feel the love you have for me.

Sometimes while my eyes are closed I pretend that I am talking to you, telling you all about life, the things I would tell you if you were here. And then I wait, and in the silence I know that you are not here, and I miss you.

I miss you so much that my heart feels broken in half. I wish that I could give part of it to you so that I could feel healing in your presence. I know that I will have to wait, and as I ponder what it is that I will do while I am still here I think of all the things that I will miss telling you, miss sharing with you.

You told me once of a dream that you had. A dream that you realized was about me the day I was born. Grandma, I dream about you now, and I wonder when my dreams will come true. I want to see you again, to see you whole, and healthy, taking a walk in all the places you loved being while you were here.

I think about all that you are doing there. I think about the amazing people you are with, and how you are helping them to feel special; the way you made me feel. I don't want to take you from your work, or from them.

I try to be strong but I find myself crying and pleading for just one more day, one more moment. One more chance to hold your hand, to tell you I love you. To tell you thank you for being there for me. To tell you that you are my everything. I didn't have enough time, never enough time, and I didn't have the words to say good bye.
I didn't want to see you hurting anymore.
I didn't want you to suffer,
but I wanted to keep you with me.

I suppose that all these things should make me try harder. To have hope and to seek to do all the righteous things that will bring me to you again someday. I wish I had the strength in my life to fulfill that desire.

I feel so weak. I feel so broken. You understood me, you listened to me, and you always cared about how I was really doing, not just the surface stuff, but the real insides of my soul.

Grandma, I miss you. I wonder if you are watching me sometimes, and if you are disappointed in what you see. If you still love me, really knowing me for who I am.
The who that I hide from everyone else. The me that is really me.
Do you still love me?

I picked an apple from your tree last time I was there. I wanted to bring it too you, to bottle it or dry it, or slice it and have a snack with you, a snack harvested from the grace of God.
I wonder what will come in my life, what the seasons will bring, what I will harvest, and who I will share it with. I wonder if I am doing all that I can, and should be doing, to nourish my family, their souls, and will my family reap a good harvest someday.

I think of all you taught me, your hard work and diligence. The faith and testimony that you had and so lived your life to emulate. I think of the lessons I learned from you going to primary with you, and then when you made me go to Relief Society. I so didn't want to go without you. I didn't want to grow up. I wanted to stay with you, but you knew better. You knew that I needed to be moving on, growing, and that growth would be painful, but would bring me the most joy. I learned then that I would be okay, without you.
I wish I believed that now.

Thank you for all the memories.
There is not a holiday that I don't think of something that I want to incorporate because of you. This year has been hard for me. I don't think I am finished grieving but I am hopeful that it is time to move on, to accept the pain as growth, and to be okay.

I miss you, I always will, but I thank you that I can look in the mirror and see all that is good of you looking back at me.
Thank you for giving me that.

I love you.

---your granddaughter

Monday, October 19, 2009

Story Care #1: Clarissa Rosebelle

Today as I was working on homework I began to smell the scent of garlic and tomato drifting from the kitchen. It was the sweet aroma of my little Clarissa making dinner without being asked. She is so dear to always notice where she can pitch in and help and does so without fanfare.

More often than I should I complain about how weary or stretched I am. Sometimes I sit and wonder if my children will grow up and give me grandchildren. Have I, at times, made parenting look so miserable that they will be inclined to opt out. I wonder?

But then I hear the children laughing and playing together, they are happy and they are content. They are good to one another and I think maybe I am not doing so terrible.

...maybe the deep breathing that I have mastered is working, ...maybe the many hymn's I hum to keep myself from saying the words that can not be taken back in times of temper.

Maybe, just maybe, I don't see the quality of my own motherhood.

I am temperamental, I am onry,
I am impatient, but my children are not.
They are calm, and sweet, and charitable.
I am thankful.

Clarissa was our belated Christmas gift.
She came the day after, keeping us in anticipation as we did not know if she would be a boy or a girl. Modest from the beginning she surprised us on the 26th of December.

I had read my great-grandmothers history the day before and when I saw her perfectly perfect little face I knew at once she was my little Clarissa Rose. She is named after both of her Great Grandmothers from my mothers line. She carries her names well as she is very spontaneous, full of comfort, loves to shop, hardworking and diligent. She is all of her grandmothers in one sweet package.

I love that she will lean over to kiss me a block from her school. She doesn't want to be seen kissing her mom, but she doesn't want to go to school without a kiss.

She still grabs my hand when we are at the Gateway shopping.

She listens to my complaints, then fills the foot bath with salts, has me take a rest and read my school book while she helps her brothers finish their chores or homework.

She reminds me everyday what God is like; He is hope, and love, and charity, and forgiveness. She is all of those things and she blesses our lives. I am thankful for her and today....my story of caring is dedicated to her today.

In the near 13 years of her life she has changed mine.

I am a better person because I have known her.
I may be her mother, but I look up to her.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

out of the blue

arriving home from soccer games today
jeremy is kicking the ball against the house

out of the blue he turns to me and says:
"you know what i think the babies
are going to be when they grow up?"

"what?", I ask.


he continues:
"wanna know who they take after?"

"Sure," I say.

he states.

good to know, i think :) ♥

Story Care

I am a self proclaimed NPR junkie. My kids know pretty much the ins and outs of the world they live in by the hourly news of NPR. They have come to be very knowledgeable about the world, politics, and people by listening to the blurbs on NPR. Since we spend a lot of time in the car, there is a lot of indoctrination going on. Particularly I love the theatrical portions, the influence of art and theatre and entertainment, book reviews, listening to people opinions is so critical to me as a parent in helping my children to form their own. I love to hear them agree, and I love it more when they disagree, and we have many conversations sparked by the influence of National Public Radio. I think I am partial to it because it is how my Grandmother grew up. Listening to the radio, and the stories she would share with me.

Once she said that her mother, brother and she were listening to a radio show and they were talking about the end of the world. It was frightening for my Great-Grandmother and pretty soon she and the children were hiding in a closet in the home thinking all was coming to an end. Radio shows had such an impact on her in her time because it was their link to the outside world, a world that was big and crazy and scary. Imagine what she would think if she were listening to my daily dose of radio.

I have always felt that it was good to expose my children to parts of life that they will never experience in our home and community. I think it gives them a sense of the larger world they live in and a compassion for others based on an understanding that what they have and how they live is unique in our ever changing and very sad at times world. I also love the celebrations of accomplishment and life. Many times my kids have commented that that persons role in our world is interesting to them, and how do I become what they are. What education will help me have that job.

This all noted one of my favorite portions happens about 815 to 820 every morning. It is called Story Core. Story Core is a portion of NPR that listens to peoples experiences. Most of them are so uplifting and some are heart wrenching, but they are always about the impact and influence that people have had in one anther's lives.

I have decided that I want to have my own Story Core. I want to share my experiences with people in my life. I want to write what they mean to me. This is my online journal. Yes it is full of family antics, and if you are sweet enough to really be reading everything I write then I commend you for your care for me and my family. I would never anticipate that anyone really reads all this. But it is my legacy. It is what I am leaving my posterity. This is who I am. Good or bad depending on the day. I am archiving and printing each entry because I know how vulnerable the worldwide web is and someday this will not even be accessible. I wish that I had the ability to cast in stone my history because I know that paper is fallible and is not going to be much of a historical ancestral record either. If we could go back to etching on stone we would really be preserving our history. However I remember a promise of prophets to us, that if we would record our history that it would be made whole with us, and that promise keeps me willing to write, to take pictures, to make scrapbooks, to write my children often in their journals, to type and type and type.....with faith that all will be preserved, and that this is a crucial part of my own development. Seeing me through my words, and picking the parts I like to keep, and the parts I need to work on....well, being aware of them anyhow.

So, the beginning of my Story Core.....personally changed to be Story Care, will be something that I share here about those who have touched my life...influenced me, and given me hope that I am a worthwhile human being becoming all that I have the potential to be.

There are so many of you. My mind is flooded, and this will not be a record of order, because picking and choosing who and when will be the biggest hurdle for me to overcome in doing this project. I will not want to hurt anyones feelings, and writing them in order will just make me crazy. I am just going to go with my thoughts each day, and when pondering who has impacted my life, those who have loved me, those I have loved and the person that each of you have influenced me to be will be a journey, and will be a blessing to me as I recognize just how blessed I have been.

Story Care....because the Core is that you Care....and your care has made me ME!

Looking forward to where my thoughts take me today....and hopeful that I will follow through with this. My goal is 100 entries, with each one I will be more whole, because in gratitude we heal even the most difficult of our heartaches. In gratitude we find hope, and in hope we find who we are intended to be.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

and the hits just keep on coming....

Driving Gavin to Football this afternoon,
his usual headphone bound head trapped in thought....

I tap....

He turns to me....

I say..."so, what's on your mind?"

He replies, "wondering why if we are going to move we don't just move for real...."

Me: For real?

Him: Yeah....like up to the Avenues or something....

He continues: [talkative....yes, I am shocked]
Why not just sell both houses and all of us move in together?

By all of us he means Colleen and Mel,
Maureen and George,
Brian and myself with the kids.......

Me: Ummmm, and that would be a good idea why???

Him: Well, someday us kids are going to have to take care of Colleen and Mel and Maureen and George as well as you and Dad.

We can have a whole retirement
community set up there!!!!

Me: You had better be able to read my mind buddy!!!!

[if you are confused refer to previous post....Football Funny!]

How old do your kids think you are???

Sweet Baby Hands...

...when did my babies hands grow up?

Football Funny

Five days a week I get the
splendid opportunity to drive
my teenage son to and from Football.
Five opportunities times two
for us to chit chat about
what is up with him.
He is seatbelted in,
I can choose how fast or slow we get there.
I can even take a new route if
I feel we have so much more to
say to one another...


He has those big Skullcandy earphones

Each day as I drive him I
pat him on the leg to get his attention:

He removes ONE ear phone:
"Hey Bud, How was school?"


Phones back on...
Me patting his leg...

ONE phone off:
"How is your homework going?


Phones back on...
Me patting his leg...

ONE phone off:
"Do you have plans for the weekend?"

"IDK yet"

Phones back on...
Me patting his leg...

ONE phone off:
"Did you get your chores done?"


Phones back on....

Finally this Tuesday when I was
going through the usual motions with him...

He turned to me and said:


Me: Really?

Still makes me smile to think....
he turned to me and said...
"Hey, you could blog that!!!"

Happy Halloween...party!

...making treat bags...


Donuts taste better on a string....
with NO hands!!!
Of course Aaron had to give the
teenage boys a hard time!!!

...maybe the baby can use hands...so sweet!

Spooky, Spooky!!!

We all had a blast.
Thank you Sheri and Aaron
the fun and freaky Halloween Party!!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Just a quick bit of tidbits...

I am at school....no fabulous pictures to post of my little loved ones...But a bit of news.

First, I have been thinking everyday about the funny things that happen that I should post and never get around to....so here are a couple of Jeremy's best of late:

ARGGGGHHHHH...now I can't think of them....k, I will come back to that!

Update on Gavin's team...they are continuing to play, trying to recruit. The game Saturday was fabulous. They didn't win, but they played like winners. Gavin had four touchdowns....all wonderful and fun to watch...a few great pictures [later]. Tonight they scrimmage against Cottonwood under the lights. The game is being filmed and we are having a party with the team later to watch it. Should be exciting.

Saturday his game is against Bingham....looking forward to it!!!

Clarissa did her best trying for SBO...She didn't make it. We had a brave girl who finally succumbed to tears last night. I was so proud of her for finally crying. She is sweet, and diligent, and tender. She got her midterm report card and I have never seen so many A's. I went to her Parent Teacher Conference and the only thing teachers had to say besides that we have an amazing daughter is that she could talk a little less in class....I smiled, and thought THANK GOODNESS...she is not perfect. I don't plan on working on her talkative nature. It will serve her well in her life, and I am happy she has friends and a social life besides always doing her best.

She texted me today and said that one of the girls was disqualified for Student Body Officer based on grades and another action that was inappropriate for the SBO's so she will be letting me know if she makes it. She is one of the two candidates that they are considering for replacement. Being in the "top two" as she put it made me smile for her, and pray. She handled yesterday so well, I know this is a blessing for her and whatever the outcome she is already strengthened and prepared to handle.

Mr. Sam the Kid....what a boy. He is playing soccer and loving it. Always getting to his homework, and hugging me extra which keeps me smiling. He is playing the Trumpet in the school band, another something that makes me smile. Hearing him play, and hearing Brian TRY to play....which actually makes me laugh more than smile. Sam is having a great year. He still looks up to Gavin so much, spent the day yesterday at the skatepark, and still came home to get his homework, chores, and hugs in before bedtime.

Jeremy....what a kid. He is the comedian in our house, sometimes intentionally and sometimes not. Being the youngest must be pretty tough because people are always chuckling at you. I have to remind the older kids that they were somewhat like him when they were little, and give him time to grow up....he can be so funny and so ridiculous at the same time.

He makes us smile....often.....

Me, I must be getting old, or just worn out...I still can't remember what made me laugh so much today. Well, maybe later. School is taking it's toll on me. I have a extra super critical Art teacher, and a History teacher who wants us to read his mind and answer the test questions in his words. It doesn't seem to matter if you are a History Major and answer correctly, even if you quote the book, he wants you to write what he is thinking, verbatim. This is going to be a tough Semester for me. I also have a Marriage and Family class. I seem to be doing adequate in that....if I were failing that class I think I would have to reconsider my job as wife and mother....it is so good to be able to cheat because you live the life!!!

Brian is working hard....always working hard. We love mornings because he is home with us until we all head out for school. The kids hug him a half a bakers dozen times each. I love listening to the giggle and run and jump for hugs...

..oh, my goodness....I just remembered what was so funny!!!!

Yeah me!!!!

Jeremy was running for hugs and jumping
into Brians arms this morning.....
I asked if it was my turn for a hug....and one of the kids
suggested that I run and jump for it!
....then Jeremy decided to start chanting "Jump Mommy"
....jump mommy, jump mommy, jump mommy.....
and Brian,
without skipping a beat
said he would save that for after our date.....
Okay, made me laugh!!!!
And now I am really looking forward to our date tonight....

When I think of Jeremy's other funnies I will post them. I do have one really funny funny of Gavins, but I have to have a picture to post with it, so later....

Back to Brian...
He is always kind, always patient, and always willing to forgive. I thank God everyday that he is ours to love, to honor, to cherish, and pray he will be blessed with health and strength to endure all that is asked of him as we raise our sweet family together.

Well, this is feeling more like the rhetorical journal it started out as. I think I have been using pictures as a crutch to writing the events of our lives.
Hope you all find you and yours happy and healthy.
Thanks for reading along!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Hit and Miss....

Busy Busy Busy...
but enjoying the laughs, love, and life
that each stage brings ♥

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Need a sign???


This is an animated graphic. [It's a freeway sign in Texas that changes the message every few second....all messages from God.]

Here are some of the messages it changes to:

Big bang theory? You've got to be kidding. --God

I love you, and you, and you, and you... --God

Let's meet at my house Sunday before the game. --God

You think it's hot here? --God

My way is the highway. --God

The "Love my Neighbor" thing, I mean it!!! --God

Loved the wedding,
invite me to the marriage. --God

We need to talk. ---God

Tell the kids I love them. --God

Keep using my name in vain
and I will make rush hour longer.

Come on over,
and bring the kids. ---God

Need Directions? --God

Follow me. --God

Let's meet at my house
Sunday before the game. --God

Will the road you are on go to my place?

Have you read my #1 seller?
There will be a test. ---God

What part of "Thou Shalt Not"
didn't you understand? ---God

Have a beautiful day. ♥

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Clarissa is running for SBO...

...Student Body Officer!


Speech memorized
and ready to tape at 9:30
this morning,
Clarissa has put a lot of effort into
this project.
Something her big brother
encouraged her to do,
telling her that she wont regret it
if she tries.

We are happy for her,
proud of her,
and praying for her.

...and so it began
with the two of us
shopping for supplies,
sifting our minds for
creative ideas,
sitting for hours cutting

Clarissa's Speech for SBO

Hi, my name is Clarissa Lawrence and I would like to be in Student Government because I believe everyone can make a difference and I would like to start in our school. I understand that as a Student Body Officer my responsibility is to set an example of friendship, good academics, and citizenship. I know that being in leadership means that I am here to help the students of Bryant to do their very own best.

Another responsibility that I can do well is being creative in planning activities that will not only meet the needs of the student body but help every student feel included and important at Bryant. I will fulfill my duties stated here by doing my best in class, maintaining a positive attitude, and by encouraging and helping my classmates to do their best. By doing these things we will all feel our individual best and together we can make our school the very best that it can be.

...the decision is based on the poster, the position statement, an interview, the speech and 50% of the decision is student vote based. ....she just texted me!!! Speech given, phewww :)

my happiness!

Daisypath - Personal pictureDaisypath Anniversary tickers
“You will have significant experiences. I hope that you will write them down and keep a record of them, that you will read them from time to time and refresh your memory of those meaningful and significant things. Some may be funny. Some may be significant only to you. Some of them may be sacred and quietly beautiful. Some may build one upon another until they represent a lifetime of special experiences.” ~Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley


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