Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thoughts of Thankfulness: Fathers

As I mentioned earlier, my dad wasn't the best, but he did teach me a few things.
He was a perfectionist. He wanted a job done correctly, and would send us back to redo until it was up to his specifications. (Hmm...I should do this with my own children.) When we would sweep the floor, he would makes sure we got all the corners. If any part was missed, we had to back and try again. He was also this way about the vehicle. He wanted the spots to be completely gone. the inside had to be as clean as the outside. The windows, the dashboard and consoles, the floor.
He had a great sense of humor. He was able to make a difficult situation better. He had a nickname for everyone and everything. Each of us kids had a nickname. Mine was Seven Bowl because I could eat seven bowls of cereal in a sitting. He called burritos "burr-ay-guz, ice cream "screms", and sandwiches "gweeches". He would tease us and rough house with us.
He was also a hard worker. He worked in the construction world as a heavy machine mechanic. H was so good at this that he was made Mechanical Foreman and was sought after by the best construction companies in the west. He would work long hours and as much as was needed to get the job done. This meant he would get there early to get the vehicles warming, then stay late to make sure they were ready for the next day.
I am also grateful for my step-father.
He is very kind and loving to my mom. He treats us kids with kindness. And, while he only had to raise the younger three, he was a patient parent. I can see that he taught my younger siblings important lessons. He is a worthy priesthood leader, a hard worker, and is a hard worker. He has made it possible for my mom to be at home, which she loves. He is also someone who I can turn to for advice. He sets a good example for us. His grandkids love him, and they love to be around him. He will take them with him when he goes out in the yard to work. He has a great sense of humor, and will help us to laugh at our situations.
I have been able to call on him when I've needed him. He was there when I went through my divorce, as well as when I had cancer. I can ask him advice, and he will give it. He is intelligent, and a hard worker. I love him, and am so glad he joined our family.
I am thankful for my father-in-law. When I was younger and lived down the street from them, I remember watching how he treated his family (especially his wife), how great he was, and I decided that I wanted to marry someone like him. He is a big, tough guy, but also tender, sweet, and patient. He will sit on the floor with the kids and play, read books, or just be with them. He is always busy. He has a great work ethic, and had the same job for over 40 years. He always helps anytime we need it. He taught his family important things, such as doing well at your job (be it school or work). He served in the guard, and has pride in our country. I am so glad I married his son, as I can see his wonderful qualities reflected there.
With all these great examples to see, I hope that our sons will have these same qualities. Pin It

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thoughts of Thankfulness: Mothers

I am so grateful for my mom.
The house that I grew up in wasn't one of those typical Mormon homes. To start out with, my parents weren't active members.
My mom was a convert. She married my dad, whose family is very active and strict. But he wasn't. He was an alcoholic and drug addict. He would only go to church occasionally. When I was in grade school, he went and was active so that he could baptize me and my siblings. I found out just recently that he was still using drugs at that time to help him "cope" with life.
My mom was the stable one for us kids. I didn't find out until junior high that he was using drugs. We had just had a lesson at a mutual activity that talked about drugs. What they looked like, what they did, and ways to say no. Then a few days later my mom called me from work (it was summer and I babysat for her that year) and asked me if I would put away some "medicine" out of the window sill and hide it from the little kids. It wasn't medicine. It was cocaine. I recognized the container.
My dad was also emotionally and physically abusive towards us. My mom would intervene as much as she could. She would also make life fun for us. We had a fun way of doing chores. She would have us hunt for chores. At Easter this was an egg hunt with chores inside. She taught me to sew by making clothes for my dolls. I was 10 or younger at the time. She also taught me to have pride in what we had.
I remember once when we were not doing well financially. I had the assignment in school to organize my clothes and draw a picture of my drawers when I was done. Well, we didn't have a dresser at the time, so I crossed the word drawer out on the worksheet and wrote box (as my clothes were in cardboard boxes). My mom sat me down and let me know that this was unacceptable. Yes, we didn't have a dresser, but we did have clothes and we kept them clean and tidy. We could be proud of the fact that we were doing this well. From that time on I didn't dwell on what we didn't have that others did, but rather on what others didn't have, that we did. It was a great lesson for me.
Then when she went through a divorce, she wouldn't let us bad mouth my father, no matter what we heard, saw, or learned. He was our dad, and we needed to treat him kindly and with respect. When I went through my own divorce, I made sure that my kids did the same thing, and I don't speak of things that are negative about their father in front of them.
I am thankful for my mom, and for all moms. For all they do, and for what I have learned watching them. Pin It

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thoughts of Thankfulness: A Loving Husband

As Thanksgiving approaches, I am feeling more gratitude for the blessing I've been given.
This week I have been especially thankful for a loving husband. One who will take time from work to help. Tuesday was a bit hard as Delta and Emma had been sick. He got all the kids off to school. he usually gets Elyse and Ari up, fed, and out the door. They have to leave by 6:55am. He lets me sleep in until 7:30. He stayed until I was able to get a shower, which was about 8:45.
Then on Thursday, he stayed home with the girls to make sure they didn't get their cousin sick. This morning was another hectic one, as the girls were up most of the night, and he stayed to help me get ready to take them to the doctor. (The twins have ear infections, but Katia is doing okay. Just a fever.)
I am grateful that he likes to cook. He is an amazing chef, who loves to cook. He makes my favorite dishes: Shrimp Scampi and Bacon Wrapped Chicken. He also makes cookies, brownies, and what ever else sounds yummy. He also experiments with dishes. Last night he made a chicken and dirty rice dish that was so yummy. I am grateful that he will come home and help get dinner on the table if I haven't been able to get it done. He will also let me rest or read while he makes Sunday dinner.
I'm thankful that he loves being a parent. He will pray for help in solving problems. He reads to Jayden and Ari every night. He plays with the girls. Even Barbies. He will watch movies with them. He will have light saber fights with the boys. He helps everyone with homework. Takes them with him to the store, bank, or just for ice cream. He worries about and cares for all of them. Wants them to have fun, and learn to work. Do well in school and other tasks, and find joy in life.
I am thankful that he is a worthy priesthood holder. I didn't have that blessing growing up, and appreciate it so much now. I am happy that I can ask for a blessing for the kids when they are sick, or myself when I need comfort. He cares about the members of our ward family, as well as our own family. He reads the scriptures better than me and is a good example to us. He leads our family and does family home evening, and calls us together for scriptures and prayer.
I am grateful that he is chivalrous. He opens doors, pulls out chairs. Pours my drink, and pampers me more than I deserve. He brings me flowers, and (what I love even more) chocolate. He doesn't stand for the boys to hit the girls. He shows respect for me and our daughters, and expects the same from all of us. He takes out the trash and has the boys do this as well. He will do those nasty jobs; like unclog the toilet, change light bulbs, change the oil, kill bugs, and clean up dog poop. He helps with the other tasks. Dishes, vacuuming, laundry, and bathrooms.
So, basically, I am spoiled. I know this. I am so thankful to have him, and hope I can "Keep Up" with him. Pin It

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Time well spent.

I woke up Monday morning with a pile of laundry in every hamper. Dishes in need of being put away, and put in the dishwasher. The front room needed straightened and vacuumed. The girls' room needed major organizing. I decided to leave all this and go do what the girls wanted to do.
So we went for a walk. We piled into the stroller, grabbed Shasta, and set off to get the mail. Next we headed to see the water in the canal.
There were ducks swimming, so we stopped to watch for a while. Delta and Emma quacked at them. They started to swim away from us, so we headed to our next destination. The horses.
The first pasture was empty, so we headed to the one across the street. There were five horses there. We stood and watched them as they walked over to us. Delta wanted to see them better, so I held her up. We patted the horses' noses. Then Emma decided that she would like to pat their noses, too.

After we had said good-bye to all the horses, we headed for home. We stopped at the canal again and watched the ducks until they swam off again.
When we reached home, I felt so good that I had spent that time with them, instead of with the clothes or dishes. They seemed to enjoy it as well. Pin It

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Today was the primary program. Ari's last. I was so glad that I was able to watch the whole thing. (Thank you Tony for taking Delta and Emma out so I could do so.)
I love the primary program. The songs always touch my heart. The children sharing what they have learned. Some who were not so nervous that they forgot what to say. Some who make everyone laugh. Those who can't sit still for that long. It is just the most wonderful thing ever.
I love the theme as well, as that is the most important thing to me. I love my family. I love that I get to be with them for eternity.
I love that I have a husband who loves all our children, and prays for them and for help in what to do while raising them. He is the best!
I wish that I could always say and do the right things, and that our children would always do the right things. But thankfully we have a Savior who can make up for our short comings.
I also love that I have the knowledge that we can be a forever family. It keeps me trying when I get down about the mistakes I make. I look at my family and want to keep going so that we will be together.
I need to spend more time with the kids. I also want to spend more time with my husband. I hope that I will be worthy to be with them forever. They are my life. Pin It

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Organizing Hair Accessories

With so many girls, there are always an abundance of accessories for doing hair. There are clips, hair bows, head bands, elastic bands, and more. I'm sure you have all seen the wonderful hair bow holders. These work great. I love them. We currently have 5. We may need more, as soon as I can make time to create them.
I have found a wonderful caddy that I love for the elastics at Hobby Lobby. They can be organized by color. I love that it locks, so the girls can't get into them. And it is see through so I know what color I want by looking. I also put the little plastic clips and metal clips in a few compartments as well.

The next I like is the bow holder I made a year ago that has a dowel for the head bands to go on, and a shelf for all the things to go on so the little kids can't get into them, and three grosgrain ribbons for the bows to go on. I have also used this shelf for a prize that Katia (or someone else) has been working on so she can see it, but not get to it. I will sometimes let her hold it while I do her hair, so that she can remember it and be more motivated to work for it.

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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

And now what?

Since school started I have been trying to set goals and accomplish them. This has been more difficult than I thought it would.
I will make a list of "to-dos". And then not get them done. That hasn't worked.
I have tried making a "done" list. (I had a friend whose mom always had her list checked off. She was frustrated one day and asked her mom how she was able to accomplish so much. She told her daughter that she had a done list instead of a to do list. She would write something down as she went to do it, then cross it off when it was done. That way she could see how much she did, instead of how much she had to do.)
Lately this hasn't helped either.
So now I am going to try something that I did when Jayden was a baby. It helped me see what I did with my time and if I was doing something that needed to be...ummmm...done away with. I'm sure that being on the computer hasn't helped. I also know that having twins is a lot more work than just having 2 kids.
I just ran into my neighbor at the store. She has twin boys who are 12 (or I think 13. No, 12) Anyway, she asked how nap time was. I told her it would be nice if they would always nap at the same time. They also wake each other up. She also reminded me that if they wake up and you don't know, they will destroy the room. This is no lie. They are great at destroying anything. They can climb and I've found them on the dresser throwing things on the floor. I've found them on the counter getting things out of the tupperware cabinet. Then I wonder how the house can get so dirty so fast. I just go from mess to mess as fast as I can, and they are at least 4 steps ahead.
So she told me that I need to get over thinking that the house should be clean, because it won't for a while. That is my other problem. I get side tracked so easily.
So, here is what I'm going to try. I'm going to keep track of what I do and for how long. Let's see... I've been on the computer for 75 minutes today. I need to make a pie, vacuum the front room, get snack ready, and help Jayden with his homework. Then I need to read to the girls, for I went to town today and was gone for 2 hours. The kids want to play with their cousins. Then I need to start dinner and get ready for Relief Society tonight.
Okay, that doesn't sound so overwhelming.
Here I go.
And good luck to you getting your things done! Pin It

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Let's go to my house for a snack.

Our family loves the Backyardigans. Everyone from Tony on down to Emma. (The little girls see a book or movie with them and they call them Dum Dum. Dum Dum. since that is how the cartoon starts.) We have a lot of the DVDs. Infact we are watching one right now.
Well, our snacks have been lacking a bit lately, so I have been trying to watch the shows and have some of the snacks they are having. Here's what I have so far:

* Knights Are Brave and Strong - Pretzels and juice, at Uniqua's house
* The Yeti - Hot chocolate, at Uniqua's house
* Pirate Treasure - Not specified, at Uniqua's house
* The Heart of the Jungle - Pretzels, at Uniqua's house
* Secret Mission - Brownies, at Uniqua's house
* Riding the Range - Cookies, at Pablo's house
* The Key to the Nile - Cheese, crackers and apple juice, at Tasha's house
* The Snow Fort - Not specified, at Tyrone's house
* It's Great to Be a Ghost - Apples, at Pablo's house
* Viking Voyage - Graham crackers, at Uniqua's house
* The Quest for the Flying Rock - Waffles, at Tyrone's house
* Surf's Up - Grilled cheese, at Pablo's house
* Race to the Tower of Power - Granola bars, at Tyrone's house
* Castaways - Applesauce, at Uniqua's house
* Cave Party - Cinnamon toast, at Pablo's house
* High Tea - Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches, at Pablo's house
* Eureka! - Graham Crackers, at Uniqua's house
* Polka Palace Party - Strawberries, at Uniqua's house
* Race Around the World - Chocolate Chip Cookies, at Uniqua's house
* Monster Detectives - Celery with hummus, at Tyrone's house

If any of you watch one of those not mentioned, would you please post what the snack was? Thanks. I really don't have the time to just sit and watch them all.
I appreciate it.

Well, I better go get snack ready. I think Chocolate Chip Cookies. Pin It

Monday, November 2, 2009

I Will Survive! this Christmas Season

Okay, so I am determined to survive this Christmas. Last year was so hectic. I didn't get all the cards out, I didn't finish wrapping until Christmas Eve. I went WAY over on the spending. I didn't make all the goodies I wanted. I did relax a bit. But I still felt that I wanted more peace. That I needed more peace. So this year after following this link from a fellow blogger, I think I can do it. I have tried something like this before from FlyLady. For some reason, I think this will work for me a bit better.

First off I printed out all the pages I would use. Next I went through what I had already purchased. (I'm almost done with Katia.) I then made a list of what I wanted to buy. After something that Jeanette said, I think I will follow her thought and simplify the spending this year. We don't NEED to give our kids that many gifts. They have way too much as it is since I've been buying toys for 16 years.
One thing we started 7 years ago is Santa only brings one gift. Then we will give the kids 4 gifts. 2 of which will be the same, one outfit, and one pair of PJs. The other 2 to fit the wants or likes of the child. I hope this will help.

Now I will set a plan in motion and do a bit each day/week. I feel confident that this will work for us this year. Fingers crossed and good luck to the rest of you. Pin It

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Fast Sunday

Okay, so I may have mentioned this before, but here is how we do fast Sunday at our house:
I decided 5 years ago, when Elyse was 12, that I wouldn't make anything for breakfast on fast Sunday. (Other Sundays I make muffins or cinnamon rolls.) The kids could have cereal or toast. This helped me, as well, feel like I was sort of participating in a fast when I was pregnant or nursing. My little way of doing without. I also decided that we couldn't eat goodies until we closed our fast.
This month will see a bit more whining since it is the day after Halloween. Last night I decided to gather up all the candy so that it wouldn't be out and seen. This might help the little ones. Well, and me. I find that sometimes I will eat something and then realize that I'm still fasting. I had Tony put it away, so that way I won't be tempted to give in when the weeping and wailing starts. We'll see how it goes. Pin It


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