Monthly Archives: March 2011

How to be a Baby

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For those of you who have not been long time readers of my blog, or who don’t know us personally, it might be news to you that Megan started reading shortly BEFORE she turned two. One day, one-year-old Megan decided to start reading. It was pretty awesome. These days, there is NOTHING she can not read.

I will probably go about introducing Jane to letters and words the same way I did with Megan, but I have no expectations for Jane regarding her reading abilities. I do, however, hope to foster a love of books and reading within her, regardless of when she starts reading on her own.

Megan LOVES reading to her sister. It seems as though she genuinely wants to share her love of books and reading with Jane.

Just days after Jane was born, I came into her room to find this scene:

And just recently:

Certainly, Megan has continued to do plenty of reading on her own. Much of her time now is researching her new role as big sister.

Megan is the BEST big sister. She loves Miss Jane so much. I am one very lucky mama!!

3 Months!!!

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Sweet Jane is three months old today!!!

She’s been in our lives for three months now, but I can guarantee: babies do NOT come any sweeter than Jane!!!

I was looking at pictures of Megan at this same age, and I was surprised at how alike my two girls look. Of course, Megan had MUCH more hair, but there’s no denying the similarities. The next four pictures are of Megan at/around three months.

I love both of my girlies like crazy!!! What a wonderful three months this has been!!!

I was told recently (by one of my most favorite people IN.THE.WORLD. that I haven’t been putting enough pictures on my blog these days. This one was for you, Amy!!

Let Them Eat Cake

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This past Saturday we headed up to my sister’s house and celebrated my nephew’s 12th birthday. Last year I offered to make Coulson’s birthday cake, and I went all out and did a guitar cake for Coulson. He loved it:

My sister asked me if I would do Coulson’s cake again this year, and this time I gave Megan the assignment of deciding what we would do for the cake. After she found a cake she liked, I then decided that she should be the the one to make it. She had a GREAT time.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get any photos of the remaining steps (the baked cake, filling the cake, and frosting the cake) because I was the one who did those steps. I decided to keep the frosting simple because I wanted the inside of the cake to be the exciting part. I didn’t tell Coulson anything about his cake, and I think he was a touch disappointed when I showed up with a plain ol’ round cake that wasn’t even frosted that well. I hope he was pleasantly surprised to find that the actual cake was a little more exciting.

Megan had soooo much fun helping with this tye dye cake. It was totally easy and turned out great.

We love you Coulson!! Hope you had a great birthday!!

Sunday’s Sundae: From the One to the Nine

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One day the Savior entered a village where there were ten lepers. Leprosy was a terrible, dreaded disease. These ten lepers came to the Savior and said, “Master, have mercy upon us; have mercy upon us who have that terrible ailment of leprosy.” And He said to the ten lepers, “Go visit your priest, and he will take care of you”—which they did. They went to see their priests, and they were cleansed, all ten of them. A short time later, one of them returned to the Savior and fell on his face and his hands and his knees, thanking the Savior for blessing him and making him well from that terrible disease. And the Savior said to that one man: “Weren’t there ten ? What has happened to the other nine? Where are they?” (See Luke 17:11–19.)

For so many of us, we go to the Lord in times of crisis and weep for assistance in our behalf. And surely, He pours His healing power into our hearts, and our souls; whatever the need may be. Certainly, we praise Him when the troubles pass and when our lives are set about again on a sure and steady course.

But when the crises pass, as they most often do, do we then shift from being the one who expresses gratitude to our Savior for what has been given to us, to the nine who fail to acknowledges and praise He from whom ALL blessings come?

David B. Haight taught: “It’s so easy in life for us to receive blessings, many of them almost uncounted, and have things happen in our lives that can help change our lives, improve our lives, and bring the Spirit into our lives. But we sometimes take them for granted. How grateful we should be for the blessings that the gospel of Jesus Christ brings into our hearts and souls. I would remind all of you that if we’re ever going to show gratitude properly to our Heavenly Father, we should do it with all of our heart, might, mind, and strength—because it was He who gave us life and breath. As that gratitude is magnified and developed and expanded, it can bless our hearts and our minds and our souls to where we’d like to continue to carry on and do those things that we are asked to do.” (Oct. 2002).

My challenge this week is to spend an extended amount of time in prayer, in order to better express my gratitude to my Heavenly Father and my Savior for all that I have been blessed with. Indeed I have been given much.

Thank You for Remembering

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A while back, (probably over a year now) I received a tender e-mail from the sweetest of young ladies. Fifteen year old Sadie had a writing assignment for one of her high school classes, and she asked me if my Jack could be the subject. The assignment was to write about a person who had an influence on your life. Sadie gave me permission to share her essay. It is as follows:

Jack
I’ve never met him. He’s never met me. Yet, Jack is one of the most influential human beings in my life today. His life began on November 18, 2008, and ended December 29, 2008, it would seem silly that a child with such a short life could do so much to change my day to day life, yet it is so true. Jack was the son of one of my mom’s best friends. We were so excited for her, when we heard she was going to have her second child. For all she knew, for all her husband knew, and for all the doctors knew, Jack was perfectly healthy in the womb; minutes after this great child was born, before his mother could hold him, he was rushed to emergency care. Not once in his life, did he laugh or smile. He soon was connected to a very complicated machine. It would take his blood; coagulate it outside of Jack’s body, then put it back into his body. Here is a blog entry, about the process:

“This afternoon, Jack will be taken off of the ECMO machine. There are several reasons:
– each day that passes poses higher risk of bleeding in the brain
– his cannula site (or the place where the tubes enter his body) is leaking more and more each day (meaning blood is oozing out of his neck […]”

Of course all of this devastated me and my family, but it was on the day of Jack’s funeral, when it hit me. It’s also the day that Jack became one of the most influential human beings in my life. Jack and his family taught me humility. I learned that I have been blessed with every day of living. Every day of my life I need to be so grateful for another day on Earth. I shouldn’t complain, because things could be a lot worse. Jack taught me to not forget the love I have for my family. I thought if this happened to one of my four little siblings, I wouldn’t know what to do. So in a way, he taught me how to love and appreciate everything my family does. Jack taught how to be strong. When hard things happen, I can lean on people, like Jack’s family did. I’ve never met him. He’s never met me. Yet, Jack is one of the most influential human beings in my life, today.

I think about my Jack everyday. I miss him. I want to be chasing him around the house and dealing with all the delightful things that two year-olds bring to everyday life. Of course I remember him always. I am his mother. Some days I wish I could wear a sign that reads, “please tell me you also remember my son.” I know that as time continues to pass, he will likely be forgotten by many.

I know Sadie won’t forget Jack, and I am so grateful that he had such an influence on her life. She is an amazing girl, raised by an amazing mother. If my girls end up half as terrific as Sadie, then I will have accomplished a job well done. I don’t think she will ever know how much this essay meant to me. Very few people know will understand what it feels like to know that your child has been lost but not forgotten. Thank you Sadie for remembering.

Spring Treat Share: J-E-LL-O!

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My sister-in-law Mary is doing a “linky party” on her blog for Spring Break ideas. I am not exactly sure what a “linky party” is, but I think I get the gist. So here is a little something that I am planning on making for a Spring treat.

I made this a few weeks ago for a basketball party with my family members. It’s a five layer Jell-o treat. I found the recipe here. I had a lot of fun making it the first time, and learned a thing or two to make it more successful the next time around.

For the Springtime treat, I plan on doing it in Spring colors. I’m thinking mostly greens and pinks.

You should know that my daughter is the pickest eater alive, and she looooooves this treat. If only it had some nutritional value. I might try to add different fruits to the layers one of these days…

This little project is time consuming, and my little one loved helping!

You too can share your ideas with Mary. Just head over to her corner!

Sunday’s Sundae: FIRE!

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When President Thomas S. Monson was a young boy, he and his family spent many-a-Summer vacationing at Vivian Park in Provo, Utah. Like many other young boys, President Monson had a knack for getting into trouble. One day, in June, he and his friend, Danny Larsen, decided to clear an area of grass where their families could have a big bonfire at night.

“For some reason, Tommy thought that burning fire to that June grass would burn a circle sufficient to allow for the bonfire that night and then the grass would just extinguish itself. To the horror of Tommy and Danny, the June grass blazed like a gasoline fire and the flames began to follow the wild grass up the mountainside, endangering the pine trees. Within minutes, every available man at Vivian Park was dragging wet burlap bags to smother the blaze.”

When I heard this story from President Monson’s past, I felt within me a great kinship with our dear prophet.

When I was younger, my best friend and I would often play in the desert near our home in Las Vegas, Nevada. She and I would explore the vast sandy region, and together we discovered plenty of hidden treasure and played many-a-game of make-believe. Often we would find left behind belongings of homeless persons or drifters, and we would explore their deserted temporary homes.

The Summer I turned eleven proved to be a lonely Summer for me. For the first time, my best friend and I hadn’t attended the same school and she had made new friends and no longer spent much time with me. One day I found myself alone in our desert playground. I engaged in a game of make-believe and soon found myself playing with matches and set fire to an old spring mattress. I became terrified as the bed burst into flames that grew larger and larger.

I distinctively remember contemplating in my mind whether I should make a run for it, or head to a nearby house for help. I decided to ‘fess up, and found myself ringing the bell of a very surprised woman who called 911 and waited with me until the fire department and my father arrived.

From his experience, President Monson learned to: “Look beyond the immediate to the possible conclusion of an activity.”

Me? I just learned that you shouldn’t play with matches.

I am so grateful that I came across this story from President Monson’s youth. For years and years my mistake has embarrassed me. I have felt so foolish for what I did that hot summer day, and I have always regretted it. But, it was just a folly of my youth. And because it happened, and because I can relate to President Monson’s similar experience, I better understand the lesson that he learned. It might be nearly seventeen years later, but now I hope to be able to apply President Monson’s lesson into my own life. Whether it be the way I talk to my children, or the way I treat my spouse, or the way I carry out my church calling, or the way I utilize my time throughout the day; whatever it may be, I hope to be able to: “look beyond the immediate to the possible conclusion of an activity.”