On July 27th, 2010, I was nineteen weeks pregnant with my third child.
That day, I had an ultrasound. You know, the BIG ultrasound, where they check and make sure everything looks normal and healthy and they also can check out the gender.
We were told that morning that everything looked normal and healthy. We were also told that the baby was a boy.
I came home and announced that the baby was a boy by posting a story on my blog. It is a story about two little baby boys born to one family. The first baby died; the second baby was born healthy and strong and his tender heart was just what the little family needed.
When we later found out that they baby was NOT a boy, and that we were having a girl, I was disappointed that the sweet story was no longer applicable to my little family. I thought maybe I would have another boy someday, and then that story could apply to my two boys.
I can not imagine a baby with a more tender heart and sweet disposition than Miss Jane. No other child could have healed our little family like she has. I have decided that there is nothing wrong with changing the story a little to be about a boy angel and his little sister.
Our Jane is definitely our “Angel With the Tender Heart.”
Click here if you would like to read the original post which contains an excerpt from the story “The Angel With the Golden Glow”. Remember, at the time I wrote that post, I thought I was having a baby boy. Feel free to consider the second child a baby girl instead of a boy.
Because that’s the way it should have been written.
For most members of the LDS faith, visiting the temple brings peace, hope, comfort, and joy. How many times have you heard someone say that they were going through a difficult time or dealing with a difficult trial or searching for an answer to a difficult question, and so they visited the temple? Likewise, often when someone we love dies, the temple is the place we go to the feel peace and a special closeness to that person. I have heard many stories of special experiences people have when they are in the temple; accounts of the eye-opening understandings and personal revelation as well as a sweet closeness to those who have passed on.
The thing is, the temple is a quiet, clean, happy place; dedicated only to God and His work. There is nothing dirty, out-of-place, or disruptive about the temple. One can not enter its walls and feel distressed, confounded or lost. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to spend all day, every day in the temple? What about a few hours of each day?
For most of us, it is impossible to spend all day, every day in the temple. Some of us are lucky to be able to go once a week, and others of us make it once a month or maybe even once a year. Obviously, depending on your life situation, or how close you even live to a temple, the time you are able to visit and experience the happiness that can be found within temple walls varies.
But guess what??? There is good news!!! All of us can spend ALL day EVERY day in the next best thing. Our homes are likely the only place that we can find the same peace and clarity that we can find in the temple. Indeed, it is possible to have the same precious experiences we can have in the temple, in our very homes.
“We may be well-advised to consider together, in family council, standards for our homes to keep them sacred and to allow them to be a ‘house of the Lord.’ The admonition to ‘establish … a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God’ provides divine insight into the type of home the Lord would have us build. Doing such begins the construction of a ‘spiritual mansion’ in which we all may reside regardless of our worldly circumstance—a home filled with treasure that ‘neither moth nor rust doth corrupt.'” – Elder Gary E. Stevenson
It is my humble belief that our homes should always be clean and full of order. Many times, I have heard people excuse a messy, dirty, or disorderly home because they are parents and can’t keep up the housework while also trying to attend to their children. While I wholeheartedly agree that sometimes the dishes need to be overlooked because a child needs to be read to, or sometimes the laundry doesn’t get folded right away because there are dollies to be doctored, I strongly disagree that housework should be on the bottom of the priority list.
Personally, I have special reason to hope that my home is the next best thing to the temple in my life. I want the atmosphere of my home to be one of love and peace the Spirit is felt welcome. I even want it to be a place where I can feel the presence of my little boy who has passed on. There is no yelling in my home. No arguing, bickering or hurtful words. I have happy children and a happy husband. I find it easier to keep it that way when I am not distracted by messes or disorder.
This is an area of my life that I will continue to work on, and where there is much room for improvement. It’s okay to have fingerprints on the piano, or a towel on the bathroom floor, but we should all strive as much as possible to make our homes houses where the spirit can dwell and righteousness can be fostered.
For a couple of months now I have wanted to change the title of my blog. It is something that I try to do at the beginning of a new blog year. Previous titles have been: “Is this Heaven?” (from Field of Dreams), “There’s No Place Like Home” (from Wizard of Oz), and “Tomorrow” (from Annie).
My fifth year of blogging is about to begin. I don’t know why I have kept up blogging for the past four years. I don’t know why I think that I have anything profound to say or that people are actually interested in what is going on with my little family. I don’t even know who really reads this anymore, and I don’t need to know. I have considered giving up blogging who knows how many times, but for now I am going to continue because it’s a nice place to feel like I have a “voice” even if no one really cares what I have to say.
In my “history of blogging” I have come across many posts/comments wherein “Mommy” blogs are criticized because the authors write about how bright and sunny their lives are; how great their kids are, and how wonderful their husbands are. When “realistic” posts are published about how “difficult” life is or how “hard” it is to raise children, the authors are praised for their honesty and willingness to not “sugar coat” real life.
Well, guess what? My life is bright and sunny. My children are great, and my husband is wonderful. Sure, we have experienced heartache. There is no denying that. Almost daily it seems like Adam and I are up against a new battle…some challenge that threatens our happiness and could potentially tear us down. But even amidst trials and sorrow, we can laugh and find joy. You hear enough complaining and negativity in this world. When people come to this little corner of the internet, I want there to be no doubt about how I feel about my role as a wife and mother, and no question about how I feel about the decisions I have made in my life that have put me in the position I am in today. No matter what, I am totally happy.
And hey, for good measure, here is a proof that Miss Jane does actually cry. It is a very rare occurrence, almost non-existent. In fact, Adam actually asked me to take this picture because he had never seen actual tears in her little eyes and we thought it was adorable.
Who needs to “sugar coat”? When your life really is this sweet?
Happy Mother’s Day!!!
In my twenty-seven years of life, my mother has taught me many things. One message in particular runs through my mind at least once every week. She always says, “if it’s important to you, it’s important to Him.” Whenever I find myself praying to my Father in Heaven for something that seems trivial or miniscule, I hear my mother’s voice reminding me that He cares about every aspect of our lives, and it’s okay to run the little things by Him. I am not sure if my mom made up that little pearl of wisdom, or if she picked it up somewhere along her journey, but I will always remember it as a life lesson my mom taught me.
My mother-in-law is always so complimentary of me, especially with the way I raise my children. She has told me time and time again how great I am with Megan. I may not always be deserving of her compliments, but I want the things she says to be true, and it makes me work harder as a mother. I heard once that the one of the greatest things that could be said about someone is that they make you want to be a better person. My mother-in-law makes me want to be a better person in many ways. She is a great example of a loving, caring, and generous mother, and she makes me want to be more like that.
Today I wish a very happy Mother’s Day to all, but especially to these two women who have such a grand impact on my life. I just wanted to share one little example of the many great things they have taught me throughout the years, and I look forward to many more years of lessons and examples.