Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Off like a prom dress

Clothes packed
sandwiches made
granola bars and animal crackers
ready for devouring
maps printed, gathered
destinations stored on phone
music uploaded/backed up
babysitter located for birds
computer hard drive backed up 
and locked away in a secure location
camera batteries charged
ready for road trip smiles

scared to death
of truth in the open.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Happy Easter!

Yes I know that Easter is still a week and a half away, but we are leaving on our two week (!) excursion to Death Valley-SLC-Bozeman-Mission early early Wednesday morning, and I doubt I'll do any posting again until we get home.  So I hope ya'll have a great holiday, and here's an Easter thought for you from President Hinkley:

"There would be no Christmas if there had not been Easter.  The baby Jesus of Bethlehem would be but another baby without the redeeming Christ of Gesthemane and Calvary, and the triumphant fact of the Resurrection.

"I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal, Living God.  None so great has ever walked the earth.  None other has made a comparable sacrifice or granted a comparable blessing. He is the Savior and the Redeemer of the world.  I believe in Him.  I declare His divinity without equivocation or compromise. I love Him. I speak His name in reverence and wonder. I worship Him as I worship His Father, in spirit and truth.  I thank Him and kneel before His Beloved Son who reached out long ago and said to each of us, 'Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.' "

Loves to All

Saturday, March 28, 2009


I read too much news.  More accurately, probably, I read too much commentary on the news--columns, blogs, ezines, journals, etc.  The course the country and world have taken recently have frequently given me pause and made me frustrated, sad, or even angry.  Something I always said I believed is that the Second Coming may well happen in my lifetime.  While I'll be perfectly happy if that's not the case, I have come to believe that's possible in a more real way than I ever have before.  Maybe things aren't any worse--maybe I'm just paying more attention.  He says He will come swiftly, leading me to believe that the downward spiral will only speed up remarkably quickly.  He says He comes as a thief in the night, leading me to believe that He will be here when perhaps we least expect it. 

Doug has made mention many times in the last few years of the fact that he's ready.  OK, well, not completely, because he doesn't feel like he's prepared to stand worthily before the Lord, but ready to sort this mess out.  Ready to end the dissension and contention which tears at this world.  Ready for battle.  Being female, being maternal, even though I know what he really means, I always cringe.  While I have great hope in the promises and glories of the Millenium, all I can think of is my babies. "Wouldn't you love to raise your kids in a world without opposition?" he asks.  Of course.  But I can't stand the thought of raising them in everything that comes just before that.  I don't want to see them go hungry, ever.  I don't want to see them hurt or marched off to battle.  Every time I see flashes of news from Sudan, Iran, Israel,  etc, all I can think about is all those children.  Somewhere in the middle of those horrible, terrifying messes are millions of children.  Millions of mothers trying to bring comfort, trying to maintain some sense of normalcy in a world that has gone completely insane.  I don't want to be that mother.  I don't want those children to be my children.  I get insanely frustrated in feeling like there's so little I can do to help the children already in those messes--the last thing I want is my kids to be in such a mess.

I look at our leaders.  I don't trust hardly any of them, on any end of the political spectrum.  I see multiple evidences of attempts to encroach on our ability to live and preach our faith, and it makes me nervous.  But then I get a little perspective.

I stop and think about what the Lord has declared to His prophet:

". . .the standard of truth has been erected; No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs my combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly and independent, til it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, til the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the great Jehovah shall say the work is done."  

I've gotten off track the last several months.  I had cause to think about a post I wrote a year ago (you can read it here), that reminded me why I felt the need to start my blog to begin with.  That reminded me what I'm working for.  That reminded me that I need to get myself back on track.  Hopefully that means getting my blog back on track, too.  Its been a little scattered, self-indulgent and odd in recent months, but here goes.  Back to the nitty gritty.

Because, despite the trials that come our way in life and all the ugly things happening in the world, there is still much reason for hope.  For joy.

Friday, March 27, 2009

On children and cuteness

I think I have the most adorable children in the entire God-blessed world, with no exception (OK, maybe one possible exception being my nephew Iyezk--he's just a little too beautiful).  Does this mean I think my kids are cuter than your kids?  I sure do.  Now, before you react the way any sane parent would--with disbelief, horror and offense--stop and think for a minute why that upsets you.  Because you think your kids are cuter than mine.  Or at the very least, as cute.

Now, don't get me wrong, I think your kids are cute. I adore children.  All those comments I've left on your photos and blogs about how adorable your children are?  I meant every one of them.  Your kids are completely scrumptious.  Its just that since my kids are my kids, I will never think any kid is as cute as mine.  I know my kids don't look like models and the genetic odds are that they never will.  Still, I've never seen a child as beautiful as my own.  I not only assume, but deeply hope, that you think that your children are even cuter than mine.  I hope you think mine are cute, but I hope that no child looks half as cute to you as yours does.  Because, you see, the truth is that most of us, and most of our kids, are pretty average.  Nevertheless, I firmly believe that each child deserves to have someone in their life who thinks they are the most adorable, wonderful creature in the world (or, in our case, one of the three most).  Every kid needs that--just ask any kid who didn't/doesn't have it.

So when you look at pictures of my kids, I hope that you ooh and ahh and giggle just as I do when I see the new pictures you post of your kids.  But I hope you always see the most beautiful face in the world when you look at your child.

In that vein, when I make a comment about one of my children being strong or smart or what have you, I mean no boastfulness. I see these things as rather benign descriptions, with no inherent virtue in them.  How they are used can be a virtue, certainly (or a vice, just as certainly, and perhaps more often), but my kids are too young to have harnessed these qualities and effectively use them in a consciously positive manner.  And for the most part I don't think it really says anything about me.  My level of intelligence, strength, creativity, imaginativeness, etc., is not dependent on my child's abilities (lets face it--they're not increasing any!).  I love my children.  Whether they have an IQ of 150 or are struggling to learn to read in 5th grade, I will love them and think them wonderful all the same.  

What I think will reflect upon me as a parent is how well behaved my children generally are.  How well they know the stories of the scriptures, how well they understand the Gospel; the way that they treat each other and others.  I want them to be full of joy their whole lives, and know these are the things that are the keys to joyfulness.  If I can teach them good values and proper priorities, then I might brag (though I hope I won't).  But for now, I share facts as I see them (if you think they're colored a bit, feel free to tell me so), but I'm just trying to figure out who they are and what challenges I'm going to need to be prepared for in teaching them those things.  I love their fantastic personalities, and am humbled by their strengths and doing my best to help them with their weaknesses.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Motate, baby

Ok, so my Kylie bear is almost 3 1/2 months old.  She still only rolls over from her tummy to her back if she's laying on an incline (pillow, hill, etc), usually on accident.  But she's getting quite good at rolling over from her back onto her tummy.  Which is supposed to be harder.  But you see, Kylie will be just like her Mommy and Daddy--she'll have no trouble accomplishing something, so long as its what she wants to do.  She has no desire to get over to her back.  Being on her back is boring.  So, anyway, I put her on the floor whilst accomplishing some chores today, and here's what she accomplished:
She started out in the middle of the blanket (which was spread out flat) on her back, looking toward that chair you can just see the leg of in the right corner of the photo.  She can go forward a little, too, but has found inching backwards to be much faster and easier.
She was pretty doggoned pleased with herself.  Despite the fact that she woke up this morning at 3am and wanted to chat.  That would've been fine, except she'd get really mad if I didn't talk back to her, and she wouldn't go back to sleep.  So at a little after 5, I finally strapped on the Snugli and walked around the house until she fell asleep.  But then it was so nice and quiet in the house with no one bothering me that I stayed up another half an hour in order to get some laundry folded.  It took me a while to get back to sleep when I got to bed, but when I got up a little after 7 to get ready to take Keilana to school Doug said, "Don't worry about it, honey, I'll take her."  Oh, bless him.  I was able to sleep for another 45 minutes and take a shower before Kylie woke up.  

Dylan's in rough shape today.  Keilana stayed home from church on Sunday and school on Monday due to a nasty, horrible cold (sore throat, deep yucky cough, runny/stuffy nose, you know the drill).  She probably should've stayed home these last two days, too, for the sake of the other kids but she really wanted to go and I apparently lack compassion for the other mothers who will likely have to deal with sick kids because of her.  Today Dylan has such a high fever that he's got chills, but I have been having trouble convincing him that taking Motrin would be a good idea.  Plus, we haven't been shopping in a while, because we're trying to get rid of the majority of our food before we leave for 2 weeks, so I really don't have anything to bribe him with.  Poor little guy is miserable.

But Kylie's sleeping now.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Would it be tacky

to wear ankle braces with heels?  'Cause then maybe I could wear all the sexy shoes I love so much but avoid for safety sake.  Just saying.

For a night out to someplace I can't afford

Blackfantasy - by RebeccaSusan on Polyvore.com

Here's why its only make believe.  Like I could EVER wear that dress. I LOVE the idea of it, but even if I was nice and thin, I'm pretty sure it'd look awful on me.  And those shoes--such sexy shoes.  But wearing regular heels (let alone ones this totally awesome) makes my ankles hurt horribly after about 5 minutes--assuming I haven't rolled them yet by then.  Which is more likely than you'd think. I hate my floppy ankles.

How'd we wind up here?

My life is pretty darned good.  There are rough days here and there, but even those are generally pretty mild and usually have something to do with wanting to ring a neck belonging to my husband or one of my children.

There are only two things that really drive me crazy consistently: my weight and our debt.  I keep having days where I get down about one or both of these things and think to myself "How'd we get into this mess?"

So to get it out of my system, I'll write it down.  Usually once I get it out, its easier for me to let something go, so here goes.  First, the weight.

I blame Dylan.  The summer I got married, I gained about 10 pounds.  Lots of indulgence, very little exercise.  It happens.  This was fine with me, since I was still about a size 9, which with my build isn't all that bad.  I got pregnant shortly thereafter, and maintained a fairly healthy weight gain during my pregnancy (this was difficult in Hawaii, where pretty much all the healthy food there is shipped in from off island--almost all produce--and we were quite poor at that point, by American standards).  I gained just shy of 40 pounds, with just over 8 pounds being baby.  I lost 25 pounds having the baby, and then the other 15 just sat there for 6 months.  Between 6-8 months post partum, I lost the remaining weight and was back to the size/weight I was before I got pregnant with Keilana.  I was feeling good.  

A few months later, I was pregnant with Dylan.  For the first six months or so of that pregnancy, I gained very little weight--it was all baby.  Then, over Thanksgiving break, I felt the baby do this massive shift (he finally turned upside down) and for the remainder of the pregnancy he was sitting on my sciatic nerve. Doing anything hurt tremendously. Doing nothing hurt.  Needless to say, my activity level (which to this point had been quite high--daily walks up and down the SLO hills, daily walks to the park with Keilana) nose-dived.  At the same time, my sweet husband kept trying to comfort me by bringing home ice cream.  And cookies.  And chocolate.  And not wanting me to have to make dinner every night, frequently brought home dinner.  From Carl's Jr. Or Taco Bell. Or McDonald's.  Or Panda Express.  With that pregnancy, I gained 50 pounds.  Barely more than 8 pounds was baby.  

That would've even been tolerable.  But (big confession) after Dylan was born I struggled mightily with Post partum depression for 9 or 10 months.  My motivation to do anything was almost nonexistent.  I was living miles from town with no car in a tiny, way too hot house, which didn't help.  My interest in healthy eating was nonexistent.  I actually gained weight after he was born.  

Anyway, I snapped back to my old self long about Novemberish, but by then I had a LONG way to go, weight wise.  I lost some of it, but not nearly as much as I would've liked, then just plateau.  Sarah and her kids moved in with us, and between the stress of having 7 people living in our house and Sarah's delicious cooking and baking, my weight didn't ever go down much.  Things just kept getting busier and busier, and so I never developed a routine, which is necessary for my discipline-challenged self in order to lose weight.  Then I got pregnant with Kylie.  When they weighed me on the way to the delivery room, I was 26 pounds heavier than when I got pregnant.  Not bad for a 9.5lb+ baby.  Within 2 weeks, I was at my prepregnancy weight (though not size yet--my belly still had some retracting/tightening up to do).  I'm now slightly lighter than when I got pregnant.  But I still have 20 pounds to go, so please, ask me how I'm doing, mock me, put rude comments on pictures I post of myself.  I need the motivation.

The debt.  Oh the debt.  So we've got a $200,000+ mortgage.  Necessary evil for a great blessing.  I can deal with that.  We've got til the end of the year left on our very sensible car that we bought because our car broke down and it would've cost more to fix it than we owed on it. I can live with that.  $50,000 to Wells Fargo for 2 1/2 degrees and 2 beautiful years in SLO. I can deal with that.  But the other debt. Yes, there is other.  That's the debt that always makes me go, "How?  How did this happen?"  And then I remember.  In twelve months time, we had to buy a new refrigerator and washer and dryer.  And a house.  And take in a family. And pay for two root canals/crowns on infected teeth.  And end up with our son taking a trip to an out of town ER and spending 5 days in the hospital down south.  And had to go to three out of state weddings, none of which we could bear to miss.  And AFTER all of that, Doug got his change of position/raise.  We did all that making tens of thousands of dollars less than we do now.  That's how that happened.  But we are making progress.  One of the biggest bills should be paid off by April/May.  Then there's just a bit left and hopefully by the end of next year, we will have lots of available credit again and be able to buy a bigger car without breaking our budget.  

Its been frustrating, but the Lord has taken care of us.  We've never missed a car payment, a mortgage payment or anything like that.  We've always had plenty to eat and money to buy diapers.  And we've been able to have a little fun here and there with very little cost to us.  Lets hope He got all the big stuff out of the way for a while.  Wish us luck!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Saturday Night Bath with the cousins

Shel Sylverstein's version:

There's too many kids in this tub
There's too many elbows to scrub
I just washed a behind
That I'm sure wasn't mine, 
There's too many kids in this tub.

What I heard tonight:

"Get your butt off of my cheek!"
"Give me back my boobie!"
"Everybody get out of here!"  

Ah, but then washed hair, brushed teeth, clean jammies.  3 Nephi 17 read (needed it tonight). Four fresh, clean, beautiful little heads bowed in simple prayer, then up the stairs for Mommy/Aunt Becky's rendition of "I Am A Child of God" and then to sleep.  Behold your little ones, indeed.

Friday, March 20, 2009

By the way, Becky

Next time you're around, I'll actually talk to you.  I swear, I only said about 4 sentences to you the whole time you were here.  How'd that happen?  Hhmmmph.  Kids.

Probably better this way--you're bound to get more out of me in the blog, anyway.

I'm not so good at conversations.

I complain too much

lately about other people and their problems (or mindsets I have trouble comprehending), about old habits that won't die, about my kids, about other people's kids.  About feeling emotionally spent (what right do I have?  how easy is my life?).  I've lost the ability lately to have "lite" conversations, about fun stuff, about little things in life.  I need to work on that.  This negativity just won't do.

I want to be that Becky that Hayley remembers.  I want to be that person that makes one of my closest friends laugh uproariously when she hears me say something rude or judgmental about another person because, "You're Becky.  You just don't do that."  I can be that person again.  I must be that person again.  I've been lazy.

I'll tuck away that note to read to myself every few days to remind myself I want to be the person he thinks I am.  Wish me luck.  

Love to all, 

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Ministry of Angels

"Even the Son of God, a God Himself, had need for heavenly comfort during His sojourn in mortality.  And so such ministrations will be to the righteous until the end of time. . .be filled with faith, and remember that the Lord has said He 'would fight [our] battles, [our] children's battles, and [the battles of our] children's children.'  And what do we do to merit such a defense? We are to 'search diligently, pray always, and be believing'. . .The latter days are not a time to fear and tremble.  They are a time to be believing and remember our covenants.

"May we all believe more readily in, and have more gratitude for, the Lord's promise as contained in one of President Monson's favorite scriptures: 'I will go before your face.  I will be on your right hand and on your left. . .my Spirit shall be in your [heart], and mine angels round about you, to bear you up.' "

~Elder Jeffery R. Holland, Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The girls

She accidentally rolled over, which was cool until she discovered it meant the sun was in her face.

Looking rather suspicious.

Looking rather Umphrey-esque.

My boy

Playin' at the plaza

My great trio of almost-redheads.

The fountains

Have I mentioned she's a little crazy?

Kid Photography

What Dylan considers fine photography.

Keilana's work. Not bad considering she was dealing with a rather large camera for small hands and a telephoto lens.  I turned the auto-focus on for her

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

What we know so far

Kylie is just over 3 months old now, and here's what we know so far:

1.  She's pretty low key.  As long as she's fed, dry and napped, she just sort of hangs out.  She'll just sit on the couch or the swing or my lap and chat with us or just watch.  She's not a big mover (though she is rather strong).  She sleeps well (and usually easily).  Even when she's upset, she can scream when something's wrong, but not like her brother and sister.  Her temper seems to be slow and mild.

2.  She's interested in people.  She stares at faces.  Big time.  She was already focusing her eyes well in the delivery room, and is much more intently focused on people than babies generally all.  She does not get fascinated with objects the same way, but when it comes to people, her attention span is very long.  She can concentrate on faces for a long time. Daddy may have finally met his staring contest match.

3.  She doesn't care much for crowds.  She tends to be more fussy and less at ease when there are lots of people around.  She has a harder time going to sleep and staying asleep. I'm afraid she's going to be a lot like her Mama, in that crowds/strangers seem to make her tense.  Dylan seemed to not notice if there was one person in a room or 50, and Keilana thrived on attention--still does.  Once she gets past her initial shyness, she is little Ms. Social Butterfly.  Kylie it seems may be a bit more of a homebody.

4.  She's very attached to Mama.  All babies are, right?  Well, this one seems to already have separation anxiety, about 8 months too early.  Sometimes she's OK with anybody, but all too often she gets very sad if someone besides me is holding her.  She sticks out her fat, pouty bottom lip and starts to whimper.  But whenever I'm around, she's a delightful baby!!

5.  She's a trifle "untraditional".  aka a freak like the rest of us.  She has made little to no effort to roll over.  Doesn't even try.  However, if I lay her down on the floor and then lie next to her, parallel to her, she will use all the upper body strength she can muster to lift her upper body off the floor and shift it over, as many times as necessary in order to face me.  Then she will scoot wildly with her little knees, and lift with her upper body, successfully inch worming her way over to me where she screams at me with a heartbreaking face that just says, "Pick me uuuupppp!!"

I call her "Smiley Kylie".  She's a joy.

Short People

The kids and I spent the day at Amanda's the other day.  Everybody had a pretty good time.  It was a beautiful day, so the kids were excited to be outside.  Dylan escaped naked from the waist down at one point, but it all worked out OK.

The baby girls.  We need to get another photo with Alexa!

Saucer sleds: not just for snow!! Clayton is inside the red one Keilana's pushing on.

Two posers and one Kung Fu Panda:)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

This one just makes me laugh

Oh good times. I remember the days when I used to wear jewelry--check this out: an anklet on each ankle, a toe ring on each foot, multiple rings on each hand, and on any given day I'd be wearing 2-3 necklaces.  Oh, I miss my belly pre-pregnancy.  And yes, I graduated in Scooby Doo boxers and bare feet.  Don't hate 'cause you ain't!!

Ok, Christa, here's a good example

of what I was talking about the other day.  Christa and I were IMing each other about our weight loss progress/goals the other day and I was lamenting my strange build and big cheeks.  In the picture:
(its a little hard to tell with all the hair) I'm pretty thin.  But notice the bigness/broadness of my shoulders and the roundness of my cheeks.  This was about 3 weeks before my 18th birthday, and I was about 35-40 pounds thinner than I am now.  Still, those broad shoulders are far less unattractive when I'm thin.  :(

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Looking at old pictures can also be a little depressing.

Who is this stud?!

And who is this skinny little girl he married??!

What ever happened to those two, I wonder????

A Word of Advice. . .

to my mommy friends whose children are even younger than mine:  take lots of photos of your children in their better (and not so great moments).  Because someday that baby/2 year old is going to be a 4 or 5 year old (or worse yet, a teenager!) and his or her cuteness will have peaked, while their ability to make you so furiously irritated you can hardly control yourself will have steadily increased.

Keilana has a unique ability to push my buttons.  Always has--far more than her brother and her still very new sister.  Her drama queen tendencies are difficult for me to be patient with and there will be days like today where, if I weren't a principled person, would just want to beat the snot out of her.  And then I take a deep breath, sit down and look at some pictures, and see something like this:

or this:

Or this:
Or this:
Or this:
Or this:
Or this:
Or this: (Yup, that's little Ahni next to her)
(I have literally thousands more I'd like to share, but you get the idea).  And suddenly I remember.  Suddenly all the wonder and joy comes flooding back and I remember why I love being a mom so very, very much.  Why I love my children so much.  Why I love my oldest daughter specifically more than I can ever express (though I frequently, helplessly try).  I remember that for all the trouble she gives me, all the headaches she causes, if I had to boil her down to a brief description, I'd say she's joyfully exuberant, completely bursting with life.  And I wouldn't have her any other way.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Sanctity and Sadness

Last night, I came across some news that saddened, sickened and totally deflated me.  There are visceral types of anger and sadness that animate us--strong, superficial reactions that make us want to scream or hurl things against a wall.  Then there are reactions deep in your heart--feeling as though your heart has sunk into your stomach, where your outward action is minimal or nonexistent because the body simply has no way to express what the spirit feels.

There is a show on HBO called Big Love, about a polygamous family in Utah.  The existence of the show itself I find to be a minor annoyance that really does not affect me or my life.  However, this week, the episode will, it is widely rumored, contain portions of the LDS temple ceremony and this week's TV Guide features a photo of one of the cast members in full temple robes.  I felt a bit angry, but mostly sick and sad, when I read this.

Right off the bat, let me make one thing absolutely, unequivocally clear: I am ashamed of absolutely nothing that goes on in the temple; I am not in any way embarrassed by any of the covenants I have made.  I believe that in the temple, and the work done therein, there is to be found a peace, a love, a knowledge that can be found nowhere else on earth.  I stand fast by the promises that I have made, and no amount of mockery or persecution or judgement from the world will ever make me turn away from those things.  I believe that the is temple quite literally the house of the Lord on the earth--the only place, besides perhaps a truly righteous home, where His spirit can dwell fully.  I am always happy to tell people that I am one of those Mormons who goes to one of those "mysterious" temples and to bear my testimony of the beautiful, eternal truths tied to these marvelous buildings.  These things being blasted before the world doesn't make me sick because I'm embarrassed by them.  It makes me sick because I hold them sacred.

How do you explain that to a society that not only holds little to nothing sacred, but has largely abandoned the idea of sanctity altogether?  My surety in the truthfulness of the Gospel has at times been mistaken once or twice for arrogance by those who know no such confidence--those who know only the haughty, self-indulgence of worldly confidence.  Its not about me, its not that I'm right--its that I was fortunate enough to be raised with the truth and have received multiple witnesses from the Spirit.  I realize that to many this relegates me to "religious nut" status, or a well meaning individual who is simply confusing strong emotions with something else.  I accepted that long ago, because there is no way to adequately describe the workings of the Spirit to someone who has never felt them.  Yes, it employs my emotional faculties and my intellectual ones, but it is unique and distinct from either.  I once heard a General Authority use the analogy of trying to tell someone what the Spirit feels like as trying to describe the taste of salt without using the word "salty".  Unless you have tasted it, there's no adequate description.

I know these things are true.  I know the temple is a place of sacred instruction and great love.  That is a testimony from which I cannot be shaken.  The evidences in my life have been too great to deny.  Will I tell you what they are?  Not here.  But not because I am ashamed--if you come to me in sincerity, willing to listen with a heart that appreciates their deeply personal and profoundly spiritual nature, I'd be happy to.  But if you simply want to mock or demean my intelligence, rationality, or truths that I hold sacred, I'm not interested.  Nothing you can ever say or do will cause me to change my mind.  Not because I've been indoctrinated to fear the wrath of an angry God, but because I know all too well the power, peace and beauty of His eternal love.

"For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ. . . ."

Friday, March 6, 2009

Oh, it is ON! On like Donkey Kong!

I have a texting problem.  I enjoy this form of communication a great deal (especially with my iPhone, where it is so easy to text).  Kindon and I like to text--it is a habit we developed while I was serving in my previous calling.  One of us would text the other to ask a question/pass on some info, and it would quickly evolve into a battle of wits--who could ridiculify or sarcasticate the other the best.  Or sometimes we'd just have a conversation.

Yesterday, he texted to let me know that Angie had had her baby (their sixth).  Little Ava Meik, weighing in at 9lbs, 10 oz.  Most of Angie's babies were around this size--they breed big babies, but little people (kind of like Christa, come to think of it).  So today he he texts me to inform me that he thinks we should set up a sumo match between Kylie and Ava.  I am SO there.  Stay tuned. . . . .

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Daily Dose

Getting big. . .outgrowing her 3-6 month clothes soon. . .

Just like her brother and sister, she is a very "serious face" sleeper

Forgive the strange angles and blur.  She is fascinated by the camera, so I have to be sneaky about taking pictures with it when she's smiling, lest she notice it and stop smiling in favor of her "studying" face. :)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Why I Love My Husband, pt. 3

(Although I think I deleted pt. 2 when I actually intended to delete a different post).

Seriously, is there anything that makes you fall more in love with your husband than those moments when you realize all over again what a good father he is?

I took Keilana to a primary activity this past Saturday.  Doug was still in bed when I left (he had a late night), but I left Dylan--awake and roaming the house unrestricted in his PJs--with him anyway.  When I got back about 20-30 minutes later, Dylan was nowhere to be found.  I headed up the stairs and what do I see?  Dylan is all snuggled up in the bed with Doug, watching Kung Fu Panda on the computer.  The funniest thing.  And he had been asking all week to watch Kung Fu Panda in bed with Daddy.  

Later that day, we were over at Katy's house, and Doug and Dylan started doing their Kung Fu moves in her livingroom, wrestling and stomping and pushing each other around.  I told Katy that this is why my mattress will not survive to its warranty date--it is as much wrestling arena as it is bed.

Yesterday when I picked Keilana up from school, she asked if she could call Daddy.  I gave her my phone so she could ask to stop by and see him at his office, but alas! he didn't answer.  She was heartbroken.  She misses him when he's gone a full work day!  Even better, one day we called and he didn't answer, but then called back a few minutes later to tell us he was there.  Between the kids and the outside noises, I didn't hear my cell phone.  When we got home and I saw that he called, I called him back and he was very, very disappointed that we'd already made it home and he missed us, because he wanted to see the kids.

Ever heard the country song, "Stealing Cinderella"?  If you like sappy stuff (even if you are a closet sap, not wanting to people to know about your sappiness), I would recommend it.  Its about a woman who's getting married and Daddy having a hard time with it because he still sees his little girl who's playing Cinderella.  Doug has forbade me to listen to it when he's around because it makes him cry.  I'm sure he'll be thrilled that I've told you all that.

I am so grateful to have the father for my children that I always wanted them to have.  He is actively involved in their lives, affectionate, playful, emotional, supportive.  Keilana always shows her outfit to Daddy in the morning before she leaves for school just because she knows that he'll tell her she's pretty.  Dylan approaches him with gleeful punches after he's given his cursory welcome home hug, because he knows Daddy will play with him.  

Doug has blessed all of our babies.  He has given Keilana a father's blessing and administered to both of them when sick.  He takes me to the temple and teaches his kids true principles.  More importantly, he shows them true principles.

What's not to love about that?

Monday, March 2, 2009


I don't like it when people lose their temper or get extremely agitated and then say something rude or hurtful, even if said statement is true, that they know others are thinking and then say something like, "Well, at least I had the guts to say it!"  or "Well, you didn't have the courage to say anything."

Courage, in this particular circumstance, would be saying something that needed to be said even though it may be uncomfortable or painful for the hearer, because after thoughtful consideration you have concluded that not saying it will cause more damage.  Its saying such a thing honestly and directly, for the hearer's benefit (because you know they need to have it pointed out to them), without malice, self-righteousness or condemnation.  Its saying it because you feel that its the best path to better understanding and righteousness in the long run, and you have decided that you are willing and able to accept the consequences (whatever they may be) immediately.

Shouting something angrily (that may in fact need to be said) because you're so ticked off or frustrated that you just can't hold it any more isn't courage.  That's not you humbly acknowledging that there may be some negative consequences that you're willing to accept in pursuit of the greater good.  That's you losing your temper or patience and saying "to hell with the consequences" because you've lost your ability for self-restraint.

Courage doesn't always roar.  More often than we realize it is a bold but nevertheless soft and gentle voice.