Monday, December 29, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - A Beautiful Day

Today was a BEAUTIFUL day. It was beautiful in more than one way. The obvious beauty of the day was that the weather was 75 degrees and mostly sunny. It was also beautiful because we were all together as a family and not too tired to enjoy such a day. Today we had a great day at church followed by a family lunch in which even the baby ate what was put in front of him. Then after lunch we took the dog, who was freshly bathed two days ago and went for a drive up the Colonial Parkway to Williamsburg and walked around Williamsburg.
We had a great walk up there. It was really crowded with all the other families out making the most of the mild temperatures also. Jay and Nathan received a new wagon for Christmas from my parents and we put that to use and were able to walk and walk. I love living in a place with all four seasons, but it is really fun to have a day that doesn't fit with the season every once in a while.
After we came home we had dinner and again everyone ate what was put in front of them, you just don't know how rare that is. Then we spent the evening hanging out together as a family. It doesn't get much better than that.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Thankful - Sailing Home For Christmas

I find that I am not being properly appreciative this holiday season and I want to rectify that. At this time of year many times I am without a husband. He has only missed one actual Christmas, but he is usually out to sea during December. I spend this time listening to songs that remind me that he is coming home soon and one song in particular that reminds me how there are those who are missing their Christmas with family. I am so very, very grateful for the people serving our country day in and day out. I am grateful to those who are deployed right now so that my husband is able to be home. I am proud to be numbered with people who chose this lifestyle even though just thinking about those families makes me teary eyed. I hope that our military feel our prayers and thankfulness and that they and their families are blessed this holiday season.

Here is my favorite non-traditional Christmas song. http://new.music.yahoo.com/videos/DougStone/Sailing-Home-For-Christmas--25697200

Saturday, December 13, 2008

All in day's work

Today 12 loads of laundry were washed and put away. After showers tonight I asked Spencer if he had put his clothes in the laundry basket. Spencer said, "I don't have a basket." I walked back to his room to make sure that I wasn't crazy and this is what I saw.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Trials

Right now I have no trials that I can think of. Can you imagine, even as I write that I am thinking that I must be missing something, but I hope that I can't think of anything. What I was thinking about today was how much the hard times in my life have helped me become who I am today. The hard times help me to know what the most important things in my life are. I am so very grateful for having the knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in my life. At the time that I first found out about our church's beliefs I had to struggle to become a part of the church, but through those struggles I am stronger in my beliefs.
I am also grateful for the knowledge that comes from the separations that Jay and I go through. The first time that Jay had to leave us I was very excited for the chance to prove to myself that I could do it. Everyone always said that I was the sort of person who was "needy". I would have to say after 4 deployments, plus training totaling 2 years 8 months not including ins and outs over 3 years, and living apart for 8 months during the whole Rhode Island thing, I am not needy. I want to be with my husband because I love him and enjoy his company more than any other person I know, but I can live without him if I have to. I am also able to say that after the first deployment my understanding and love of our Eternal marriage was made much more clear to me. Though we may not always be able to be together on Earth, we have Eternity to enjoy each other.
There are many other trials that we have throughout our lives, but those come to mind more than the others and I am grateful for the lessons learned. I am also very grateful for the peace of no trials right now.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Army of Women

http://www.armyofwomen.org/

This is a program that all woman can sign up to help with Breast Cancer research. They are trying to reach 1 million women so that they have a better base for their research. Periodically questionares are sent for you to fill out and they use the information to help with research. I have received two questionares since joining that took about a minute to fill out. This is a great way to help with Breast Cancer research without much effort. I hope you will join also.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Thanksgiving

I am grateful for Thanksgiving coming up and the idea that people all over take the time to sit back and remember all their blessings. I am grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and for his sacrifice on our behalf. I am grateful for a Prophet leading and guiding us today. I am grateful for the greatest husband any woman could ever want to have. I am grateful for four beautiful, smart, happy children. I am grateful for a family that loves me and taught me well. I am grateful for the most wonderful friends and family all over the world. I am grateful for a home that I love in a neighborhood that I love where my children go to school in a safe place. I am grateful for a country in which we have freedom and prosperity. There are many more things that I am thankful for, but that is the top of the list. Hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Christmas Spirit

I received this as an email and filled it out for my blog because I just enjoy these so much.

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? A pleasant mixture of both.

2. Real tree or Artificial? Artificial, but I have a candle from Yankee Candle to make it smell real.

3. When do you put up the tree? Thanksgiving weekend

4. When do you take the tree down? New Year's Day

5. Do you like eggnog? Only homemade eggnog that turns out more like boiled custard.

6. Favorite gift received as a child? My cat, I had wanted a horse, but my parents talked me down to a dog and then to a cat because they were willing to have a cat.

7. Hardest person to buy for? My Dad

8. Easiest person to buy for? My children

9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes

10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail

11.Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Can't think of one, I must have put a mental block on it.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? Miracle on 34th Street, the remake or Rodolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Metally right after Christmas, in reality November

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? No

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Eggnog

16. Lights on the tree? I prefer white lights, but I have been overruled by the husband and all the children.

17. Favorite Christmas song? The Holy and The Ivy

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Stay home

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Yes, but only because of the song.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Star

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? I would do one on Christmas Eve and the rest on Christmas morning, but again I have been overruled.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Having too many places to go and things to do and not enough time to spend as a family. Also, the way the Navy likes to send ships out for the month of Dec. and bring them home just a couple of days before Christmas after all the work has been finished.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? White lights and red bows with gold ornaments.I

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? Chicken with dried beef and bacon, green bean casserole and really great rolls followed by Better than Sex cake.

25. What do you want for Christmas this year? Brain Age, IPOD, 2nd TV

Hope some of you will fill it out too, I would love to see your answers.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Still Alive

It has been a long time since I last posted. You would think I have something to say, but I really don't. Jay's being home has been wonderful and that is the main reason that I have not been blogging. I have someone to talk to in the evenings again and so I am spending less time on the computer. As a result I am also not keeping up with the blogs I read as well. Since I don't have anything to say I will just add a picture. Nathan is ready for a big boy bed, until he gets one he will just use any bed he can find.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Halloween Pics

We belive in recycling costumes.Nathan as Eyore. Eyore had his 10th Halloween this year.
Sarah spent her third year as an NC State cheerleader.
Spencer who receives the bulk of the hand-me-down clothes was able to chose a new costume and was Anakin Skywalker.
Alex was an NC State Football player for his second or third year.

Gratitude Weekly - Jay is really home

How many weeks am I allowed to be grateful that Jay is home? This weekend he is really home. His ship has been in port for 15 days, but his leave didn't start until after work on Halloween night. During those days he was only off the ship for a full 24 hours 1 time and he had five 24 hour duty days. Now he is all ours for 12 days. We are so excited to have him home all day and all night. I have a long list of things that I had hoped to accomplish, but Jay has other plans.
Friday night after trick or treating I took Jay to the urgent care center to get an xray of his foot and he has a broken foot. We don't really know how badly it is broken, but their are bone chips floating around and he has to stay off of it in a temporary cast until Wednesday when he will go see an orthopedic person. See how resourceful my husband is.
You might ask what in the world he did, well, ultimately he broke it spending quality time with his son. Alex asked Jay to play football with him and some boys from church and first play of the game Jay got hurt. He continued to play for the next hour and then worked on it injured for three full days before getting a doctor to look at the foot. He tried to get the ship doctor to x-ray it, but was denied (that is a whole other story, not so pretty. Just trust us when we say we don't want the government in charge of our health care.) Now we get to spend quiet time that involves Jay sitting for the next few days of his leave. Luckily all I really need right now to make me happy is to be in the same room with my love. I am so so so grateful for every minute we get to spend together.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Gratitude Weekly


I haven't posted my weekly gratitude entry the past two weeks because it has been so obvious what I am grateful for. Jay came home safe and mostly sound. It is amazing the difference having him home makes. It is so dramatically better. We love him so much.
When Jay came home he was also able to confer the Aaronic Priesthood on Alex and ordained him to the office of a Deacon in our church. I am so very grateful that Alex has chosen to live his life in a way that will allow him to enjoy working on Earth on behalf of our Heavenly Father. He is such a great child and we are so blessed to be given him to raise.

Homecoming Pictures





Sunday, October 19, 2008

Homecoming Day

No pictures. No one is more sorry about that than I am. It was a great day. First off it didn't pour down rain. It misted off and on, but we weren't wet. It has rained at all three of Jay's ship homecomings, but this was the lightest rain we have had. Jay had duty today so we weren't able to bring him home with us, but we did get to spend 5 hours on board with him.
We arrived at 9:15 and the ship was coming into the dock. It took until about 10:45 for the sailors to begin coming off the ship. We got a quick look at Jay waving to us before he had to get back to work. At about 12:00 someone came down to the pier where we were and escorted Alex, Spencer, Sarah, Nathan, my nephew Sam and I onto the ship where Jay was waiting at the top of the stairs for us. My parents, who had joined us at the Pier and were a HUGE help with Nathan opted to skip the ship tour.
Nathan was confused by everything. He wasn't sure about his Dad until he saw the other children hug Jay. Then Nathan really got into the spirit of the day. Jay would have to run off to do something and every time he came back in a room Nathan would yell, "Daddy's Back!" It never got old. Jay showed us all over the ship and we had a great time.
Can't wait till tomorrow when we get to bring him home.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Less than a week










Jay will be home in less than a week. Right now he is playing around in the middle of the Atlantic headed our way. Less than a week.

Gratitude Weekly - In-Laws

I truly have the best in-laws ever. They are really a second set of parents. I know they love me like their own child and I love them too. Now my in-laws are closer. They are serving a mission at the Washington DC Temple and we hope to be able to see them monthly.
I will also add that I feel like I hit the jackpot when it come to in-laws. They aren't perfect, but it isn't from lack of trying on their part.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Nothing but a giant playpen

My father has begun work on our attached garage. The goal is to turn it into another bedroom. Nathan is loving Granddaddy working around the house. He wants to be right in the middle of the action. Daddy has found a safe way to make that happen. The trailer appears to be nothing but a giant playpen.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Hold to the Rod

I am laughing outloud with no one to share it with so I am putting it on my blog. Alex is in the shower singing at the top of his lungs, Hold to the Rod. I don't think he realizes that everyone in the house can hear him or the people walking by outside if their were any. Lucky for all of us he is a really great singer. Oh, now he has switched to I Lived in Heaven.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - This week and last

Last weekend we had our friends the Francesconis come to visit us and we went to the airshow at Naval Station Oceana. An airshow is always a great way to spend a day. We got to meet their new baby boy and had a wonderful time hanging out and having fun.
This weekend in a continuation of our great weekend last week Gregory Scadden, Lauren's little brother, included us in the reading of his mission call. We listened in on speaker phone while he opened it and read it word for word. He is going to the Albania Triana Mission. (I think that is right.) We could feel the Holy Ghost so strongly while he read. Jay was also on another phone to hear it too. We are so grateful to have been included. There is nothing like hearing a mission call read for the first time.

Shoes everywhere


I look around my house and I wonder, why are there shoes everywhere? Then I look a little closer and realize that more than half of them are mine. I think I have figured out where the problem lies. In my defense, some of those were played in by little girls, but I still need to learn to pick up after myself better.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Update + Gratitude

It has been so long since I have blogged so I am going to just recap some of our past few weeks. I know this much, each week that has passed I have thought about what I was grateful for even if I didn't blog about it. Two weeks ago I was thankful for the wonderful summer that we have had. It was great to have the summer to ourselves. We started out with Scout camp and Dance camps and Golf camp, but then we settled into life with just family life the rest of the summer. I love being able to decide what we do and when and not having to run our lives on other people's schedules. We spent most of our summer at Busch Gardens for our fun times. What a way to spend the summer.
Last week I was so very thankful for a good first week of school. We are very happy with our new teachers and classes and friends. I think that it is going to be a great year. Sarah has the teacher we had hoped for and a couple of good friends in her class. Spencer has his best friend from 2 grade and his different best friend from 3 grade in his class this year. It feels like he has won the lottery. Alex has a couple of great male teachers in middle school and that makes him very happy. He relates to male teachers better and enjoys their classes more. He also has a couple of classes with good friends. Nathan started preschool. Day 1 was awful, but it was the day the parents stay. Day 2 was really good. Day 3 was perfect and Day 4 was above average. He is a totally different child since starting school and it is in a good way that he is different. He really needed to have someone not treat him like a baby. I apparently can't give him that because he is my baby and I keep failing to let him grow up.
This week I will say that I am thankful for prayer. I know that Nathan's success in going to school comes from the number of prayers on his behalf we have made. I know that the big children have been blessed in their classes and with their friends thanks to prayer. I believe that Jay is coping much better in his very difficult trials while on the ship thanks to the abundant prayers on his behalf. And I can really tell of so many instances of personal revelation for my family that I have had thanks to my prayers.
There is so very much to be thankful for and I am. One of Jay's friends wrote to him, "Things may get worse, but they just might get better." I hope to continue to find things of optimism and hope every day and I hope to share those things with others to help brighten their worlds as well.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Tagged

I have been tagged by two of my dear friends. These are easy fun ways to add a post so for any of you that read my blog and are looking for a free and easy post to update your own blogs, consider yourselves tagged.

20 years ago!
1988
1. I was 13 years old and starting 8th grade.
2. I had a very regretful mullet haircut.
3. I was in girls chorus in middle school and loved it very much.

10 years ago!
1998
1. Alex was two and Jay was in school at NC State.
2. Spencer was on the way and my resting heartrate was 100 all the time. I also had trouble walking. Overall I was one sick pregnant woman.
3. We lived next door to Ken and Lauren and played card games all the time. Life was very fun.

5 years ago!
2003
1. Living in Virginia now.
2. Alex was 7, Spencer was 4, Sarah was 2.
3. Jay's ship was in the ship yard and I was working hard as the Spouse's Club Pres.

3 years ago!
2005
1. Living in Rhode Island
2. Nathan was born in December and so I spent most of that year in bed.
3. Jay was home all year long.

1 year ago!
2007
1. Living in Virginia again
2. Jay returned from a year in Iraq in the summer and Spencer was baptized.
3. Cross country family road trip and summer in Rhode Island.

This year so far!
2008
1. Jay commuted the first half of the year from Rhode Island and then deployed.
2. Children finished 1st, 3rd and 6th grades
3. Taking a dance class for the first time in 15 years.

Yesterday!
Saturday
1. Went to the airport
2. Went to the beach
3. Went to the pool

Today!
Sunday
1. Went to church
2. Went to the playground
3. Talked to Jay

Tomorrow!
Monday
1. Going to dance class
2. Going to the grocery store
3. Organizing for back to school

Next Year!
2009
1. Another cross country car trip for the family, minus Jay.
2. Another deployment for Jay.
3. 15 Year Wedding Anniversary. Still very happily married.

Tag You're It

Memory Game

1. As a comment on this post, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you know me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you.

And if you're just a "lurker" that I don't know very well, please use this as an excuse to comment and say hello!

Gratitude Weekly - Good Food

I love good food. If I am not careful I will become obsessed and gain weight and spend all my money on good food. To prove my point, one summer in high school I spent half my earnings on eating out that summer and gained 20 lbs.
This week I had a great week of food. My dear sister-in-law came to visit and I used the excuse to enjoy many of my very favorite restaurants and it was awesome. First night that she was here we went to The Cheesecake Factory; I had Chicken Piccata and Chocolate Moose Cheesecake. It was fabulous. Thursday night we went out for seafood. I had shrimp, scallops and clams. Friday lunch we went to Paul's Deli. That is my favorite place for lunch and I always get the same thing there; a Club Special. It never fails to totally satisfy me. Dinner Friday night we went to a Japanese Steakhouse where I had shrimp and scallops again. Then later to Coldstone Creamery. It may have been totally glutenous, but I loved every minute of it.
So what am I thankful for? I am thankful for great food put together in great combinations and cooked by people who have practiced their craft and perfected it. Yum! I am also grateful for the opportunity that I had this week to take a break and eat.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Jonas Brothers

Last night we had a great night back in the back in the cheap seats at the Jonas Brother's concert. We got lawn tickets and really sat in the very back. The good news was that we didn't have to worry about being in front of anyone. The Jonas Brothers really put on a great show. We had a wonderful time and I am very glad that we went.
It didn't start off great however. The opening act was Demi Lovato. Because it was still light out we couldn't see the big screen TVs, and were too far away to see the stage well. The children were very discouraged and thought the night would be a bust. After Demi Lovato there was an hour long intermission while we waited for the sun to set before the Jonas Brothers came on. When their show started we could see the TV screens really well and we could see the stage. The energy was amazing. If we could bottle the energy at that concert all our energy problems would be solved. I would just like a little bit of the energy to save for a bad day.
One of the greatest things about the concert was the way the Jonas Brothers talked to the audience about working hard at your goals and anything being possible if you work hard and try hard. Also, they have a wonderful section talking about diabetes and they are really doing a great job of teaching and bring attention to not just childhood diabetes, but ways to stay healthy to prevent adult diabetes.
At the end of the concert here are the children's thoughts.
Alex - "That was really good."
Spencer - "This was the best night of my life. I want to get really good at the piano"
Sarah - "I have never had a better day than this one, can we do it again?"
My thoughts were also along the lines of "That was definitely worth it."

Monday, August 18, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - 15 years

Last night was my 15 year class reunion. My friend Carol and I have been preparing mentally and physically for the past month for this reunion. It was a casual affair and only a handful of people showed up, but I am very glad we took the time to go and see some old friends. I am very grateful to the girl who organized everything. Someone has to do it.
What I am most grateful for in regards to our 15 year class reunion is the mental preparation. I have been through the yearbooks and mental rewind of my high school years. Not all the things that happened back then were happy memories, but there were a lot of good times too. I am grateful to look back and learn from things that happened 15 years ago. In two years I will have a high schooler myself and the memories of what it felt like to be a teenager will be helpful in helping my own children to get through those years.
High school is probably the most dramatic time of life, but as Brad Paisley says about high school in his song Letter to Me, "These are no where near the best years of our life."

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Happy Anniversary

Today is our 14th anniversary. Or as Jay would say, Susan's Anniversary. The first time Jay and I met I thought he was old. I was 18 and didn't see guys in college wearing suits often. The second time we met he was on a date to the school dance with my roommate and I was wearing a very revealing dress and trying to date two guys at the same time. He thought I was a floozy, but a cute one. The third time we met was by phone and really the first time we had talked to each other. We talked for two hours and when we got off the phone I thought I want to marry a guy just like him, not him, but someone like him. I had great instincts. He is the best husband and father any woman could hope for. I'm not just saying that because he has been gone more than home for the last 2+ years. The thing that I remember most about our wedding day is that I was smiling so hard it hurt as we got married and it is one of the few weddings that I haven't cried at. I was way to happy for even happy tears and I still am.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - The Cabin

My first trip to the cabin July 1975.
This weekend the children, my parents and I went to the Blue Ridge Mountains for a family reunion and 100th anniversary celebration. My father's maternal ancestors bought a large area of land in the mountains and built an orchard. This was the anniversary of that orchard's start. They had a wonderful day of sharing memories. Most of these relations are Quakers and in true Quaker form they had a scheduled program of speakers sharing their memories and history, but allowed for anyone with questions, comments or additional stories to stand and share also. I didn't get to enjoy much of the program because I spent the day climbing up and down the mountain with a 2 year old, but what I did hear I enjoyed so much.
What I really appreciated about our trip to the mountains was visiting The Cabin. The Cabin was built for my paternal grandmother's mother. My great grandmother had 4 daughters and their husbands worked together to build her a cabin on the orchard. The cabin is basically three rooms downstairs and a bathroom, with one room upstairs. On the back side of The Cabin is a large screened in porch with a newer bathroom that has been added on. It isn't huge, but it feels roomy enough and the view is spectacular. View back in 1975, has only improved through the years.
Growing up I didn't really like to go to The Cabin. I prefer my nature climatized and bug free. Stories of snakes and bears kept me close to home, but truly The Cabin is one of the great places where children can go out and play and just go back in time to safer time and place where all you really hear around you is nature. We spent one summer at The Cabin painting and cleaning the inside up really nice and ever since it has been a much better place to visit. I have only visited The Cabin once since getting married 14 years ago. When we visited this time I was greatly impressed by how well kept up everything is and how much I would like to return with my family again soon. I do believe that to fully appreciate the beauty and peace and mostly the special quality of the the area growing up is required. We had a wonderful trip and I was really impressed by all that we saw and were a part of this weekend.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Baseball the way it should be


Spencer and I went to baseball game last night with the cub scouts. The leader was able to get us a sky box for the game. I was totally meant to watch all sporting events from a sky box. There was food and leather couches and chairs plus a TV that showed us instant replays. I have always thought instant replay was what was missing from live games. But the very best part of the sky box experience was the air conditioning. The team lost 7-0, but the fireworks afterward were terrific.

Gratitude Weekly - Sunday Classes without Children

I was released from teaching Primary and called to teach once a month in Relief Society. This was my first week to attend Sunday School and Relief Society in so very long. The last time I was able to attend, Nathan was still running around the hallway and I missed so much. Then I taught Spencer's class for about a year and now I am back to attending my classes. It was so wonderful to sit and have the opportunity to be taught. Our teachers were wonderful and I learned so much and really felt so recharged at the end of church. I will miss my class, but I am so very thankful for a Bishop who knew what my needs were even if I didn't.

Gratitude Weekly - Vacation

Last weekend when I would have been updating my blog about what I am grateful for I was out of town. The children and I went to Raleigh for a few days with friends. It was so great. We rested and relaxed and got away from the phone and computer which for me is as good as it gets to getting away. On top of all that I won best 3 out of 4 games of Phase 10. I love to win. Our friends made our stay great and we had so much fun. Thanks.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Family Home Evening

I am grateful for the blessings that come from having Family Home Evening. Most of the time when Jay is gone it seems to be too overwhelming to me to try to have FHE. Evenings with my children is not my strong time. With children I am better with mornings than evenings. I have a tendency to have a short temper in the evenings and it seems wrong to snap and fuss and sometimes even yell during FHE. Lately we have been making more of an effort to hold our FHEs every week. The children are older now able to help more and appreciate the attention of family time more. I love the way the family feels the Spirit when we sit down together and sing songs and have a lesson that relates to our daily needs. Every week I think how much easier it would be to just watch a movie as a family and call it good, but when we go to the extra effort of having a lesson the feeling of happiness that we have as a family is increase by so much that I am beginning to realize that we just can't afford to not have FHE. We are blessed as a family for having FHE and even more we are blessed to have church leaders who know our needs and can council us with what will help our family grow strong.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Lieutenant Commander Select Forsgren


Congratulations to Jay for being selected for Lieutenant Commander. We are very, very happy with this news.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Jill

This past week we returned my niece Jill to her family. Sarah cried most of the way home from Kentucky. Jill was with us for two weeks and we loved having her here. She took so much stress off of my shoulders. Just having another person in the house was great. We stayed up late girl talking and played all day. She cleaned my kitchen every evening without being asked or complaining. In fact I don't think she whined or complained once the whole time she was here. It was so much fun having her here and so much of a relief for me. I wish we could keep her, but it is back to the real world now. I am so very thankful for the time we had with Jill and I hope she can come back again soon.

Gratitude Weekly - One week late

Last week I missed writing, but I am no less grateful for our country's birthday this week than I was last week. Here is a quick quote from my husband about the 4th of July. He wrote this on July 3rd, "Tomorrow I have duty. It isn’t the best way to celebrate Independence Day, but it is quite appropriate. The Declaration of Independence was an act of war. I stand now to defend all that that document and the Constitution stand for. I don’t mind; I love my country and my job. I love my family! They are all worth fighting for." In speaking of his shipmates Jay said, "I realized that these people have sacrificed so much for people who have never met them. What a good group of people. I am proud to serve with them."
I am very proud to be his wife and I am grateful to live in this country and support those who protect us and keep us safe daily.

Monday, June 30, 2008

WARNING - Overly proud Mom alert

Alex is home from his first week of Scout Camp. I survived and he thrived. He had a great week and is feeling really great about himself thanks to himself and the wonderful boys and leaders that he spent the week with. We went up on Tuesday night to celebrate Alex's 12th birthday with him. It was a surprise visit that the Bishop planned and didn't tell Alex about. Alex said he was having a good time, but he still looked scared and shy to me. The boys in his troop were really making efforts to make him feel a part of the group. They are good boys and have big hearts. Unlike school they don't seem to care about anything except that you are part of the troop and so you are accepted.
It was good to see Alex and it made him feel good too. Our Bishop had given him an Indiana Jones hat for his birthday and they nicknamed him Indi. After that we just sat back and waited for the week to be over. When we went up to camp on Friday he was definitely acting more comfortable and no longer scared at all. In fact on Wednesday night he completed the Wilderness survival overnight camp out. He built his own shelter and slept in it without a sleeping bag or anything. Considering he has only been camping about 6 times and only once without a parent it is terrific that he did this and did it on his first try.
He is very proud of what he accomplished. At the end of the week on Friday a storm blew through the camp and got everything wet. The troop decided to come home a night early and Alex was the only one who wanted to stay. I told the leaders that obviously Alex has the worst home life.
A note about tooth brushing. When we got there I asked Alex if he had brushed his teeth or changed his underwear and socks. He had changed underwear and socks, but claimed he couldn't find his tooth brush. He hadn't opened his very neatly packed toiletry kit all week. At least he changed his underwear right?

Gratitude Weekly - Jill

My niece Jill is here for two weeks. I am so happy to have her here. You can't imagine how much my stress level is down. She is cute and fun and helpful and just a pleasure to be around. I wish we could keep her. It is great to have another girl to talk with and all the children love her. Sarah thinks that Jill is here just for her and has made her a sister. You can't believe how great Jill is with all the children. She is kind and patient and gentle. I am totally spoiled for two weeks and loving it. Thank you Jill for coming and Jennie and James for letting her.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Growing up

It keeps happening. My children keep growing up.
Alex is leaving tomorrow morning for scout camp. He will be gone for 6 days. Okay that is an exaggeration, he will be gone five days and a few hours. There is a chance of rain 3 days he will be gone. It is going to be hot there. He will be in charge of remembering to brush his teeth without me to double check on it. There is a chance that he won't brush his teeth all week. I know I sound a little crazy here but there is a reason people call me bossy and controlling, it is because I have trouble letting go of the little details. Camp will be a great thing for him and hopefully I will grow up a little bit too.
As if Alex growing up isn't enough the baby has the nerve to grow and change every day too. This child would cry every time we drove into the parking lot at church for a year. He thought we were out of our minds if we thought he was going to go nursery. We didn't even come close to getting him to let us leave him anywhere, he had the worse attachment difficulties I have ever seen. Then it all changed. Today he ran to nursery and waited at the door until I got there to let him in, then he waved goodbye to me. What happened to my clingy baby? I love that we don't have tears, but does everyone have to grow up at once.
I am so proud of those two boy and of the other boy and his sister. I love every stage and I miss them when they pass. The only solution I can see is that I am going to have to grow up too. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Too many for one week

First off I am so grateful that school is out. I am so glad to have my children home and for it to be time for just us.
Second, I am grateful for the teachers who taught my children all year long. They spent so much time with my children and helped them grow all year long. They gave so much and I could never do what they do.
Third, this weekend was my parent's 50th wedding aniversary. I am grateful to them for all they have given me over the years and I'm especially for their example of how to love another.
Finally, with Sunday being Father's Day, I am reminded of how lucky I am to have the best Father a girl could ever have. He is so wise and someone I can always be proud of. I am also so lucky to have married someone so much like him. I have the best husband who is the greatest dad. Our children miss him so much while he is gone because when he is here he makes our world so great.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Dance

Sarah completed her third year of dance this weekend. It is her second year at her present dance studio and it was a terrific year. She took ballet, tap and jazz and performed a ballet routine and a jazz routine in her dance recital. As a very proud mother I must say with as little bias as possible, she was fabulous. She knew her dances very well and had no stage fright this year. Last year she was a little nervous. She has developed a great deal of grace over the last year and I am very thankful that she not only takes dance, but that she really loves it.
I love to dance. After the children go to bed at night I frequently dance around the kitchen while cleaning up and dance up and down the hallway. I always dreamed of a daughter that would enjoy dancing, but I didn't count on it. I am beyond trilled that Sarah is enjoying dance. She had a great time and wonderful teachers. To top it all off Sarah showed great gratitude herself this weekend in telling me frequently how much she appreciated my help with taking her to dance and preparing her for the recital.

Photos by http://www.carolehayes.com/

Friday, June 06, 2008

Bone Marrow Update

As I posted earlier, I was the best possible match to donate bone marrow for a lady with leukemia. I went to Georgetown University had a physical, interviews and other things and everything came back good. Unfortunately, I have a questionable history that looks a great deal like autoimmune disease. Because of the previous problems that I have had with my legs they believe the surgery would be to much of a risk to my permanent health. If they can find another suitable match then I will not give. If they can't they may call me and discuss the risks again and give me another chance.
I was very disappointed to be deferred, but everything happens for a reason. My best wishes and prayers go out to the lady in need of a transplant.
I would encourage anyone who has considered getting on the bone marrow donor list to check it out. Here is there website.
http://www.marrow.org/

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Memorial Day

I am so thankful for those who serve our country and have served our country in the past. Serving is what it really is. The hours are horribly long and the dediction required is incredibly high. I know personally by what I see Jay give of himself and know that there are those who regularly give more and still those who have died who have given all to serve and protect our country and us as indiviuals. They leave their homes and go to fight in other countries so that the fighting doesn't happen on American soil.
On Memorial Day Toby Keith's song American Soilder was on the radio and Jay said, "He really gets it right in this song. That is exactly how I feel."

And I will always do my duty no matter what the price
I’ve counted up the cost, I know the sacrifice
Oh and I don’t want to die for you, but if dyin’s asked of me
I’ll bear that cross with honor, cause freedom don’t come free.


Jay's peers were asked to complete a survey on the factors that made them stay in the Navy and what makes them want to get out. The number one reason for staying in was Loyalty to Nation/Sevice, number three was Patriotism. Those were ranked well above pay. I am proud of my husband and so very thankful to all those who have come before us and paved the way and those who stand beside him and continue to work to keep us safe and free.

Spencer's Says

Spencer has been taking his yearly state assessment tests for the last 4 days. He has his last one tomorrow. Everyday when he comes home from school and I ask him how his tests went he says, "It was easy." So today I said something to him about being smart and that must be why the tests seem easy.
He replied, "I just can't help it that I am so smart, my Dad taught me so much."
We sure do love Dad.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Exercise is bad for you

First thing on the agenda when Jay leaves is to lose weight and get in shape so that I will look good when he comes home. He does the same thing with usually awesome results. I do this every time with pretty good success and then he comes home and we eat out a bunch to celebrate and it all goes down hill again. So I am taking the moderation idea this time. I am cutting back on fast food BIG TIME. And I am going to start walking. Yesterday with all good intentions I put the baby down for a nap and began a leisurely stroll on the treadmill for 30 minutes. Nothing to hard right. Remember that I was out of commission for three months with leg problems. Only problem with this is that I didn't really have any good walking shoes so I used an old pair that should have been retired long ago. Last night my knee blew up like a balloon. Don't worry I am doing some better today and in a few days I hope to be ready to try again.
I bought new shoes today, but I do think exercise is just bad for you.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Bye, Bye Daddy


Jay is gone now. We had to take him to the airport and ship him off to his ship. Already you might say, that is what we said too. We thought that we were going to have 6 weeks with him, but it ran down to 3 1/2. Don't worry, we are going to be okay. Nathan was fine when I showed him that I had Doritos. They are like a drug to him. The boys were like me resolute. We have done this so much that it isn't easy, but we know it must be done. Sarah was a basket case. She is finally asleep, but it was rough getting there.
Jay will be gone until mid fall. I would love to say where he is and what he is doing but that wouldn't be safe. I can say that his ship is the USS Oak Hill (LSD 51). He will be the Officer in charge of Operations.
We had the BEST time while he was home. There is nothing like having the family all together.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Music

Music is on my mind this week. Today was the last day for our Primary Chorister who will be moving soon. She has really made the effort and succeeded in teaching the Primary children at church. She has worked on helping them sing better, to hear the notes better, to follow and lead music, to know the behavior that goes along with singing, she taught them to sing in other languages, and many more things that I am sure that I am forgetting. I have never experienced such a music leader for children this age. She only sees them for 20 minutes a week basically and yet has taught them so very much in this time. Her work with them will last them a lifetime. One big example to me of her influence is that Sarah used to not be willing to sing at church and now she sings at church and she sings her primary songs that Sister Johnson taught her all the time. On a side note this wonderful sister taught both Alex and Spencer piano this year and for that I will always be in her debt.
Alex was called up in Primary today as the spotlight child and one of his questions was what makes you unique. He said that he loves music. If the same question had been asked of me I would have replied with the same answer. He had his end of the year band concert this week. He plays the clarinet and he plays it very well. He hopes to add the French Horn to his list of musical interests this summer.
I personally love music and I love to sing. I love hearing my children sing and play, especially the piano. They wouldn't know how much I love hearing them play with the number of times that I make them use headphones, but I love hearing them play. I love that they sit down at the piano so much during the day just for a few minutes of playing time if that is all they have. Undoubtedly I am thankful for music in my life.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Local Church Leaders

Today at church the wards were rearranged. Ours was only affected minimally and our bishopric stayed the same. While we were sitting there in the gym in uncomfortable chairs and chaos all around I noticed that I had an unobstructed view of the Stake President. The stake president is someone we know well seeing that he used to be our bishop when we lived here before and his son Nathan used to babysit for us too. When he was called a few years ago to be Stake President I was very disappointed that we were moving and wouldn't be able to watch the stake grow under his leadership. As I watched him today I was overwhelmed with how glad I am that he is our local leader. He is a truly good man, he really tells it like it is and expects us listen and then go forth and make our lives better and work harder for the Lord.
The bishops from all the wards and branches spoke and bore their testimonies of the truthfulness of the gospel. As they spoke I was thrilled to realize that all of their messages were unique and that I would be glad to have ANY of them as my bishop. They all said things that needed to be said. Things that were thought provoking and inspirational. I believe that anyone listening in our meeting today couldn't leave there without feeling like improving themselves and sharing that improvement with those that surround them.
Here in Virginia we are certainly being lead by some great men and I am grateful to all of them for their service on our behalf and for the Lord.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Best Possible Match

Last Thursday I found out that I am "the best possible match for a recipient in desperate need of a bone marrow transplant".
I joined the Dept. of Defense Marrow Donor Program back in August of 2006. An author that I really enjoy was having a book signing on a book about Navy SEALs. She had joined with the DOD to add people to their bone marrow registry at each of her signings. At the time one of the active duty Navy SEALs from Virginia Beach was looking for a match. I had always wanted to be on the national list for Bone Marrow Donors so I managed to register at her book signing.
Back in March I was contacted that I was a possible match for someone. The next step in the process was that I went to a lab and gave them some more blood. I was contacted on Thursday May 8th and told that I am now the best possible match and would I proceed. YES. They sent me a DVD and book to read followed by a phone interview in which the details for donation were discussed. I was asked if I would proceed. YES. Next week I head up to Georgetown University for a Physical with the doctors who will be performing the surgery. Then we wait for about a week for two doctors and the DOD coordinator to sign off saying that I am okay for donation. At current time I am scheduled to donate on June 19th.
All I know about the person that I am donating for is that she is a 41 year old female with prolymphocytic leukemia.
When I signed up for the Donor program it was an abstract thought that I might be able to help save a life. I feel kind of like I have won the lottery.
There are still some hurdles to cross, but we are on our way.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - It's Crazy, but it is true

I hate to say what I am truly thankful for this week. It sounds crazy. I am going to have to say that I am thankful for what I gained from the separation from Jay. Everyday that he is here I am so grateful for him. I appreciate him so much more for having been apart. I can't bring myself to say that I am glad that we were apart, but I am going to say that I have learned from our trials. He walks in the door and I can't believe how happy I am to see him. The level of stress that I feel on my shoulders feels like it has been lifted with helium and is almost lifting me off my feet. Life feels easy. WOW!!

Saturday, May 03, 2008

JAY'S HOME! JAY'S HOME! JAY'S HOME!

Jay dropped us off and left us(Spencer's words to his teacher) in Virgina on June 2, 2006 to head for training in South Carolina before heading to Iraq. He returned from Iraq on June 20, 2007. During our summer we traveled and summered with him in Rhode Island. Starting Labor Day we began the pattern of weekends with Dad. He worked all week in Rhode Island and flew home on weekends. It wasn't ideal, but it was a wonderful blessing every week and for the most part no one complained, we were just glad to see him.
Last night, May 2, 2008 Jay finally moved home. I flew up to Rhode Island and helped him pack up his life there and move home to live with us in our little green house. Now he gets to spend all of his at home nights in his own bed with his own family. We are so glad to have him back.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Weekly Gratitude - Good Friends

I am so thankful for my good friends. I am up in Rhode Island today and the reason I am here is because I have a wonderful friend who came up from North Carolina to take care of the children for me to come up here. She was really brave to take this on considering we had no idea if Nathan would let someone else take care of him.

Tomorrow we will say good-bye to Rhode Island and Jay and I will drive home together. But I will be grateful for that next week.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Our Wonderful Vacation


A few years ago my wise sister-in-law explained the difference between a Vacation and a Trip. A trip includes children, a vacation is time alone for yourself or yourself and your husband. Jay and I just took a wonderful vacation to Houston, Texas this weekend. I don't think we could have changed one minute of our trip to make it any better. Everything was so terrific.

Our dear friend Brad got married this weekend to a wonderful lady who truly complements him. We are so happy for them. Brad and Heather know how to have a party. Every detail was outstanding and they planned the perfect weekend. As far as we are concerned they could do the same thing every year and we would gladly come.


I also had the great privilege of visiting with a friend that I hadn't seen in years. We had dinner Friday night and I got to meet his love, then they came down and had lunch with Jay and I on Saturday. It was so great to finally see Marv again.


We have 10 days left until Jay moves home from Rhode Island.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Priceless

Spring Break
1136 total miles
Fast food
Cold
Wind
Less than pleasant apartment
Week with Jay - Priceless, and worth every minute.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Many, Many Things

There were too many things to be thankful for this week. I couldn't pick just one. Sadly though I can't remember the beginning of the week so I may be missing something. Over the weekend we went to Western New York to visit Jay's brother Pete and his family. We had a great time with them. If we hadn't had so much fun I would have taken some pictures. While we were there I saw Spencer's smile continuously. It was amazing. Spencer has a beautiful smile, but it has been absent a lot over the last year and while we were at Pete's I noticed that he was smiling so much you would think his face would break.
I am also very thankful that we made the trip safely. The children and I are becoming experts at traveling without Jay, but we don't like to do it. It was a long stressful drive with a lot of non interstate driving. We made it with no troubles at all and much success. Jay also traveled safely to New York to meet us there for which I am thankful.
Last week began our rehiring of a very nice lady to help with the household cleaning. I had been planning to wait to have her come help us until we unpacked, but reality set in and I found that sometimes you just have go ahead and do somethings. The amount of relief I feel in having her assistance is way out of proportion with the work she does, but just knowing that I have some adult help makes all the difference.
Finally, last week I meet a lady in need and stopped to help. It was something that needed to be done and I am very glad that I didn't just keep walking past her. I would want someone to help me if the situation was reversed. I am thankful that I was in a position to offer her my help.
It was a good week and now we are in Rhode Island for the week. It is cold and dark and dreary, but Jay is here and so life is great.

Monday, March 31, 2008

March Recap



Easter Egg Hunts, Spencer's 9th Birthday, Bullriding and the Pinewood Derby were the highlights of our month.

Gratitude Weekly - Relief

It is so easy to say what I am grateful for this week. After 14 weeks of pain and swelling in my legs from something called Erythema Nodosum I am almost pain free. I have suffered horribly during this time and the relief and gratitude is overwhelming. I had two doctor appointments this week and they gave me a couple of medicines to see if they would work and they sure haven't hurt. I don't know if I truly give the meds credit for my recovery though. I would say that prayer is probably more the cure, but I will take the relief in any form and be thankful for it.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Gratitude Weekly - Clean House

Today is Easter and as such there are many deep and thoughtful things that I am thankful for. I am going to express my gratitude however for something less deep or meaningful, yet something I am so overwhelmingly grateful for I must share. My house is cleaner than it has been in several months.
We had the wonderful pleasure of company this weekend. Five adults and seven children shared our small house for the Easter weekend. We celebrated birthdays and Easter and just hung out. It was a great time. Before the company came, we had a major crisis cleaning. The children pitched in and from 6:30-9:00 in the evening we worked as hard as we could to get the house in good shape for company. Now our good shape would probably be considered unacceptable to many, but it was the best we could manage at this point in time.
Now I know that you are thinking to yourselves, she had 12 people in her house all weekend, it was probably trashed by the end of the weekend. You would be wrong. I have the greatest friends, before they left they made sure that the house was in a place that when everyone, including Jay, had gone, I could sit down and put my feet up instead of sit down and cry. I have clean towels, clean floors and a straight house. For me that equals happiness.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Tagged

5 Things I Was Doing 10 Years Ago
1. We were living in Raleigh.
2. I was taking Art History at Peace and hating every minute of it.
3. I suffered from depression severely during this year, which prompted me to drop the above Art History Class.
4. Alex was almost 2 and adorable.
5. I was massaging Lauren's super swollen feet.

5 Things On My To-Do List
1. Buy Easter stuff
2. Balance Checkbook
3. Finish the boys' laundry
4. Grocery shop
5. Vacuum

5 Snacks I Enjoy
1. Cupcakes from Cake Ladies, Inc.
2. Cupcakes from The Sugar Tree Bakery
3. Peanut Butter Passion Ice Cream from Schwans
4. Cereal
5. Cinnamon and Raisin English Muffins

5 Places I've Lived
1. Yorktown, VA - 23 years
2. Provo, UT - 2 years
3. Raleigh, NC - 4.5 years
4. Charleston, SC - 1 year
5. Portsmouth, RI - 2 years

What I Would Do if I Became a Billionaire
1. Be debt free
2. Have a slightly larger home
3. Make sure all my family had a dependable car
4. Travel
5. Have a housekeeper, nanny and cook. Not really, but it is fun to think of having all of those for a week or so, make that a month.

5 Bad Habits
1. Eating Sugar
2. Not exercising
3. Worrying about things that I can't control.
4. Not picking up after myself.
5. Not following up on things that I need to do.

5 Jobs I've Had
1. Making cotton candy, drinks and snow cones at Water Country USA
2. Dancer in Kiddie show at Water Country USA
3. Selling dresses
4. Grocery Checkout Girl at Harris Teeter
5. Cashier at the BYU Bookstore

Some things people don't know about me ...
1. I love to take hour long bathes with the water up to the rim of the tub.
2. I read myself to sleep almost every night.
3. I have a totally irrational fear of ticks.
4. I am afraid to go outside in the dark. I do it, but I have to talk myself up to do it even as an adult.
5. I love state fairs, rodeos, bull riding and all the things my husband considers to be redneck.
6. Jay and I are tax fanatics. (Emily, that's for you)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Spring


I am so grateful that Spring is on it way. The official first day of Spring is coming up this week on Thursday, March 20th. Spring is my favorite season. It was the season that I fell in love with my husband and every year when I start to see and smell the beginnings of the season I am overcome with the same feelings that I felt when I first got to know my love.


My favorite tree is the Bradford Pear and right now they are in their glory all around.




My favorite spring flower is the Hyacinth. It's fragrance is what Spring smells like to me.

For those of you not experiencing the wonders of Spring, please don't hate me because I am, just come visit.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Domestic Goddess

Today, I was plunging the toilet, (isn't that a great way to start a blog) when Sarah comes in the bathroom and stops to watch me work. She is making faces and I thought that was bad, but then she started to express her views. Here they are.

*THAT is the most disgusting thing I have every seen.
*I am never doing THAT when I grow up.
*When I grow up my husband is going to do THAT so that I don't ever have to.
*If my husband is a work THAT is the only time I would ever do THAT.
*I am going to marry one of those husbands who works at home so that if THAT ever happens I don't have to do IT because IT is disgusting.

I am doing something wrong?

Monday, March 10, 2008

New Starts

I know that I am a week behind on sharing my thoughts about what I am grateful for, but it really seemed to defeat the point of looking for my blessings when I say that I am grateful that this week is over. That could go for this past week or the week before. I have been sick or someone else has been sick or all of us have been sick for so long that I can't remember what life used to be like. Throw a bunch of personal crisis in for each of my children and it seems like I live in a tornado. But when I thought about the fact that it is Sunday night and the last week is over and a new one has begun I thought about why Sunday feels like such a relief, and this is what I came up with.
I love having a new start or a clean slate. This feeling comes from taking the Sacrament each week. I apply the new start feeling to other areas of my life, but the main one is, on Sunday when I go to church and renew my covenants with Heavenly Father by partaking of the Sacrament then I know that as I go out into my week I can go forward into a better week. I can do my best to forget the mistakes of last week and try again in the week to come. It helps me to focus my goals back to my ultimate goal which is to live my life for Heavenly Father and put forth my best effort in the places that matter most.
So today, Sunday night, after a great day at church I would say that I am grateful for the new start. Ultimately I am grateful for the Atonement of Christ.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Valerie Has A Blog

This week I am greatful that my dear friend Valerie now has a blog. We met Valerie and Cannon in Charleston, SC while Cannon and Jay were going through Neclear Power School together. Valerie has twin boys who are two months older than our Sarah. Now she has four children and is expecting her fifth. We saw their family while traveling through Utah this summer and it was so great catching up. Please go check out Valerie's blog. You can even wish her a Happy Birthday as she turns 8 (she may only be 7, but Jay says 8) tomorrow on February 29th.
http://neslen.blogspot.com/

Thursday, February 21, 2008

I'm Happy

That's what I am grateful for. I'm Happy. I love my life. I am trying very hard to live in the moment and not look to the future for my happiness and what do you know. . . I am happy in my present. There is a song out by Trace Adkins right now called, You're Gonna Miss This, and it has really helped me to realize how much I am enjoying my life.

You're gonna miss this
You're gonna want this back
You're gonna wish these days hadn't gone by so fast
These are some good times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now
But you're gonna miss this


I already know that my children are growing up too fast and that though every day is very hard, I love it. Every day there are new and very frustrating things that happen, but I wouldn't miss it for anything.

Monday, February 11, 2008

My Friend Kara

Today I have to say that I am very thankful for my friend Kara. We met in Charleston, but didn't know each other well there. Since she has moved to Virginia it has been great getting to know her better. I teach her daughter Rachel in my Valiant 9 class, she and Spencer get along well. But back to Kara, she is such a generous person who gives until it hurts. Kara is Spencer's Wolf leader and is great with the children. Several times she has substituted for me in my Primary class. This week while her husband was out of town she brought me dinner. It was so nice of her to go out of her way for us and it was the best meal we had all week. The children loved it and we saved leftovers for Jay and we all enjoyed the meal over again. Today Jay texted me at church to let me know he was at home throwing up and needed help with Nathan who was also at home sick. Kara, again, came through for me and taught my class at the last minute. She is a great person and a great friend and I am very grateful for her friendship.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Vitamin C

This week I am thankful for Vitamin C. I have been sick, real sick since Thursday. When I went to the Dr on Friday they said, it sure looks like strep, I guess we will wait until next week when the test comes back and if it comes back positive we will give you some antibiotics. Oh and by the way, go home and look at your throat in the mirror because that is exactly what strep looks like.
Well, without the benefit of an antibiotic I have been attacking my illness with Vitamin C round the clock and I am feeling only half as bad as I did on Friday. I have used Vitamin C many times to help ward off a cold and now I firmly believe it is the only thing keeping me upright.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Alex's Faith in God

Alex after receiving the Arrow of Light award in Webelos. He also received the Religious Knot and an award for completing all 20 achievements in Webelos.


I am thankful tonight that Alex has completed almost all of the requirements for him to receive his Faith in God award in June when he turns 12. He has lost his Faith in God book twice during his four years while working on it. Neither time was it his fault that the book was lost, both times he gave it to an adult and it was not returned. Tonight we sat down and went through a new book and he could recall and tell me about all the different things he had done. He remembered them, and when they happened and most importantly each activity seemed to mean something to him. He has two more activities to do and he needs to finish up his Preparing for the Priesthood section then he will be finished. I am very pleased with him and he is pleased with himself. I am thankful that the Lord blessed me with a child who has such a great understanding of his purpose in life.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Happy Children

This week I am going to have to chose my darling children as my area of gratitude. They are good kids who really are so agreeable. When things don't go their way they are disappointed, but they are also quick to move on and be happy again. I am always surprised at their fast rebound when they have a disappointment or get angry and they find their happiness again. A mother couldn't ask for more.

Monday, January 14, 2008

I'm Grateful for ???


I am stealing this idea from Laurie's (a friend of my friend Emily, who's blog I peek in on regularly)blog. She is writing something she is grateful for every week. So here goes my first week at this, we will see if I stick to it.


I am always grateful when my husband comes home for the weekend. I will try to only let that be my pick this one time, but know that it is every week's main gratitude. I am glad to see him, hear his voice, talk to him about what has happened during the week and talk about nothing. He is the hardest worker I know and he comes home and goes right to work trying to make my life easier in the week to come. It makes the children happy to see him and he always takes the time to do something with just them which makes them feel special and gives me down time.

This week I am especially grateful he came home because I woke up with tons of pain in my back and chest Saturday morning and couldn't do anything for myself. By the time he left tonight, I had the pain under control and the house under control as well. I am very grateful for my sweet husband and his weekly visits. Someday we will hopefully get to live together.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Not so bad after all

I learned today that I am not so bad after all. I had a really rough day and felt the need to self medicate with food, lots of food and the really bad stuff too. I was careful enough to only gorge myself on the snack food that I had bought to try to snack more healthy. I felt really like a failure for having less control and strongly considered not recording what I had eaten today in my Weight Watcher's tracker, but I didn't want to lie to myself anymore. I turns out that I didn't do that badly after all. I was only 2.5 points over my daily allotment and I was well within the points I can use to help me through the week. Yea Me! I also managed to stay away from the bakery. That was the biggest struggle of the day.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Weight Watchers

I have officially given up and I am getting help. I went to weight watchers yesterday. When I weighed in before deciding to join I weighed 1 pound more than I weighed the day Sarah was born. That is an all time high for me. So I gave them my money and promised to come back every week. After that I went for a walk and had a piece of birthday cake. I'm not perfect, but I am trying. Today, I ate salad at lunch and dinner. I ate other things at dinner too, but considering my dislike of salad and most things green, I am trying. For exercise today I took Nathan to gymnastics. That might not seem like exercise to most, but if you saw him trying to do all the climbing and jumping you would see my workout. He is probably over 40 lbs and doesn't jump yet so I am constantly lifting him and helping him jump. My upper body got a great workout.
On a side note, it was 72 degrees here today, if this is global warming sign me up.