Thursday, April 16, 2015

D is for Disney and Ding.....C is for Conner and Carys

Disney called and said they missed us while we were blacked out all summer, so the first chance we had we went running back.....for Disney's sake of course. 
 This time Ding was here visiting so we roped him into coming with us. These kids LOVE their uncle Ding! I seriously love how excited they get and how much they love him. It is fun having a young uncle that can play with them on a different level. And I know he adores them.

 These two pictures from Mickeys fun wheel are probably some of my very favorite Disney pictures ever! I love it. pure excitement and thrill. And I am also glad I got to capture Kellen's face like this. This is pretty much what this boy looks like on any ride he rides. No matter how thrilling it may or may not be, he remains stoic the whole time. This pic is actually a bit more of a smile than he has on most rides. But once he is done on the ride he is ranting and raving. It is the funniest thing ever. 

 Carys on the special horse that Julie Andrews rode on when Walt took her to Disneyland. Daddy is fond of this horse, so this was especially for him!
 Even if our kids never remember these days that we spent at Disneyland this year, it has been incredible for me. And I know that they are moments and memories that I will carry with me forever. The magic. The pure joy and happiness. The awe on their sweet little faces. Yes, even I too have been won over by the magic of this place called Disneyland.
 This handsome boy started his final year at circle preschool. It is so fun watching these kids grown and mature and develop into these amazing little beings that they are. I just wish it didn't have to happen so fast! It is hard to imagine this little tyke starting Kinder a year. He is my cuddle bug and my little partner and I will miss him more than words can express. But like it or not it is coming. What a little stud this boy is!
 And I am not the only one that will miss this boy to pieces. These two are two peas in a  pod. Even if they take turns picking on each other. They are twins separated by a few years and the bestest of friends. Carys has so many little "connerisms". She moves and acts and talks so much like him. I don't know if it comes natural or it is learned behavior. All I know is watching how much this boy address and dotes on his sister and seeing the adoration in her eyes right back makes all the crazy, hectic moments of having lots of little ones totally and completely worth it!

Love, in its purest form.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

He Is Here

We have been hit again. If I wasn't already anxious for summer before, now I really am. We have survived most of cold and flu season this year without too much of a problem, but it seems as though we have the luck of having sickness hit our home during our breaks. Christmas break we all got strep throat. 5 out of 6 of us came down with it in a matter of 36 hours or so. To say it was rough would be the understatement of the year. 
And now her we are on spring break. The first week we went to yosemtie, and I am grateful with every fiber of my being that the sickness didn't hit while we were there in midst of our first "real" family vacation. But on the way home Kellen started to have some tummy trouble. He ended up on the couch the greater part of the next 2-3 days. And as soon as he was feeling better, sweet little Carys started throwing up. I have never had a little one as small as her sick in this kind of way. It's hard seeing her in pain an uncomfortable and not really understanding why. 
Yesterday about mid afternoon I was really having a hard time mentally and emotionally. I was feeling horrible for Carys and my heart was aching seeing her so sick and sad. My 3 older kids were bored and antsy and disappointed. We had plans to have friends over this week, to go the park and the zoo and to play and have fun. And here we were, sitting inside, the T.V. on a repeat of cartoons for whichever sick child was stuck with nothing to do but sleep and puke and watch. I was feeling worried because my brother and his fiancé come into town in just a few days and I am afraid everyone is going to be sick and ruin the time that they have here and was just plain frustrated with my lack of control over the whole situation.

At one point in the afternoon I had moved Carys and I out from her bedroom to the couch in the living room. She was being content to sit by herself for a few minutes, so I was stealing the opportunity to rush around the house and clean up a few dishes and sweep and get whatever done that I could before she needed me. Then out of nowhere the thought came to me that I should run and grab the bowl for her, just in case she needed to throw up. I dismissed this idea quickly, trying to use whatever free minutes I could for myself. And anyway, she was sleeping and looked fine and hadn't thrown up in a few hours. I kept about my cleaning and the thought came again. And again, I sort of pushed it aside and thought I will grab it the next time I am back there. And then again, quicker this time, the thought came back. Go and get the bowl for her. So this time I listened. Yes, I am thick and stubborn. But I rushed back in the room, got the bowl and sat it down beside her and headed back to the dishes. Within 20 second I kid you not Carys bolted up and started to cry for me. I was able to rush to her side and move the bowl to mouth JUST in the knick of time! And as I sat there helping her aim over the bowl I was almost in shock.
There have been many time lately that I have sought the council and guidance and direction of the holy ghost. Where I have prayed to be led and guided and directed in different aspects of my life. And there at times when I pray to the Lord and ask for this companionship of the spirit that I feel a bit unworthy. My personal list of things I could/should be doing better to draw closer to my savior is a long list. I feel a lot of pressure sometimes to make sure that I am remaining close enough to the Lord not only for myself and my testimony of the gospel, but for my children as well. And this feeling can make me feel extremely overwhelmed and inadequate most of the time. I feel I should be praying more. Going to the temple more often. Studying my scriptures better. Reading the scriptures with the kids and having family home evening more regularly. And yet I still request of the Lord to give me the guidance of the spirit and help me to recognize its promptings always. 

I know that Carys throwing up all over my couch would not have been the end of the world. If I had not been prompted to go and get that bowl for her then the worst that would have happened would have been me dealing with a big clean up and having extra towels to wash, fold and dry that night. It would have been managed just fine and my day would have gone on. Obviously having gotten the bowl made my life just that much easier on an already taxing day, and for that I am much appreciative. 
But far more than that, I received a strong witness in that moment that the Lord is truly here for me. That he is aware of me each and every moment of each and every day. No matter how great or small that moment is. He is there and he is in tune to my needs and wants and desires. And I KNOW that he sends his spirit and the guidance and protection of his angels to lead me and guide me and protect me and my family. I felt a love wash over me in that moment and a confirmation of the Lords hand in my life that I needed so very much. Because if the Lord loves me and acknowledges me enough to prompt me to get a throw up bowl for my sweet little toddler, then I should have no doubt that he is there right next to me, helping me and guiding me through my much bigger weaknesses and struggles and trials. 

I hope my children always know how much I love the Lord. How grateful I am for the life that I have lived and where it has brought me today. How blessed I feel to have the perfect knowledge that my life without the gospel is void of the kind of peace and joy and everlasting love that can be found in and Only in living the gospel and following our savior Jesus Christ. I hope and pray that I can always be a shining light for him. That I can always stand boldly and proudly for who I am and what I believe in. No matter how simple or hard that may be. 

I love my Savior Jesus Christ. For without him I would be and have nothing. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


 This sweet girl is lucky enough that her birthday usually ends up being within the first few days of school. Some may look at this and think it is a bummer. I think it is awesome. This pretty much makes you the most well known kid in your class right off the bat! Who could ask for anything better than this? So after school we surprised Makenna with some flowers and a balloon. Love that smile!
 I LOVE this picture! Look at that cute smile and that excitement! I think she was excited before she even opened it up!
 I think Conner may have matched Makenna's excitement!

 $8 from Grandma and Grandpa for this big 8 year old girl! Somewhere along the way I guess I blinked and this sweet little thing grew up into this beautiful young lady. I really can't believe she is 8 years old, in the 3rd grade, ready to be baptized. She brings so much life and laughter into our home. She keeps me on my toes and always does a good job reminding me that it is okay to laugh and let yourself go. She is a spunky, sassy little thing at times and she knows it! She is a great big sister and I really don't know how I would do it without her. I asked her what she wanted for her cake/dessert and she said she wanted the biggest Chocolate cake we could get! So we went to Costco and bought her a chocolate cake that could feed an army! I think she was satisfied! Happy Birthday Makenna!

 Getting her first double scoop ice cream cone at baskin robins with a gift card she got for her birthday. She was Soooooo excited and felt so big!
 Our other August boy had a birthday too! 29 Again!! And looking great! How could it not be a happy birthday with all those cuties there to celebrate with you?!

 A couple of birthday gifts for Daddy. It is funny because the kids have come to think that for any occasion that involves gifts for Dad it should include something related to Paul McCartney. I would say he is raising them right. And Daddy's usual birthday cake pick....the Luscious Lemon cake from the grove pastry shop!
 Happy Birthday Daddy!