Friday, September 30, 2011


Poor Christian, he had a little incident with a big wood post on the way into the wedding last saturday in Utah.  He ended up with one very sore, swollen eye and 3 stitches.  Oh well, at least now the eyebrows match on both sides with scars in the same place!
I'm looking for positives here. ..

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Flying Lessons

Lesson 26:
Take care of your body & soul.

This past weekend was a lot of fun.  There was A LOT of driving, playing, talking, visiting with family, picture taking and so on.  There wasn't much sleep or rest or taking care of my body.  I am now paying the price and that is ok, because it was a special event and I wouldn't have missed it.  I don't regret it at all.

Seriously, though, I keep re-learning this lesson.  I feel so much better and happier when I am taking care of myself.  Taking care of yourself can mean so many different things - for me it looks like this:
exercise, eat fruits and veggies and minimize sugar, do something creative, take photos, shower and get dressed and dry my hair and do my makeup (even if I'm not going anywhere - it just feels better), cook healthy dinners, read good books, hug my kids a lot, stay connected with great people, play around in the garden and flower beds, water plants, listen to good music, go to sleep at a reasonable hour at night, write in my journal, paint with bright colors, refinish an old piece of furniture, read books with my children, have a lemonade from Chick-fil-A, go on walks, pick flowers for a vase, pray, watch something inspiring, eat a little ice cream, snuggle children, drink a lot of water.

Now, do I do all of those things every single day?  Of course not (good thing I don't live close to a Chick-fil-a).  I am in that never-ending struggle that we all have of finding balance.  What I have learned is that by IDENTIFYING the things that contribute to my happiness and making time for them makes me a much better person.  And taking care of myself goes beyond exercise and food - because my soul is part of me and it gets fed in different ways.  I just need to remember what they are, and make sure taking care of my soul is just as important as exercise and healthy eating.  Sometimes  I make sacrifices for certain things or deadlines or events, and that's ok with me.  But overall,  I MUST remember this: take care of your body and soul Emily!!!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Photo Favorite

We have had this tricycle for a long time.  Yet this is the first child I have had who can pedal it strong enough to get around and really enjoy it.  He makes me smile, riding around on 'his bike'.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Flying Lessons

Lesson 25:  Keep Going, and write it down.

Sometimes so much happens in a week that I forget it has only been 7 days that have passed.  Thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers; Christian's ear surgery went well and he is up and going again!  We are so happy he can hear now and I'm sure his school teachers will appreciate that as well.  Madeline (after having a virus at the beginning of the week and missing a day of school) competed and finished with her personal best in her second cross country meet.  Savanna had a great week of school and has all of her work turned in (this is a really big deal!)  Emma was her delightful, energetic, mess-making creative self and kept me on my toes.  Clark is now officially an underwear boy - NO MORE DIAPERS!  For another 10 weeks that is.  I am thrilled with him - I have never had a child toilet train so quickly AND stay dry at night all at once.

We went to the farm and picked 30 bags of onions, carrots, potatoes, beets, cabbage, pumpkins, kolrabi, and corn.  I've been blanching and freezing and canning like wild!  So far I have 30 jars of salsa, 14 jars of jalapeno jelly, and a freezer full of corn and carrots.  My tomato plants at home are still producing wildly and that makes me so happy!  Before we head out of town this coming week for my brother's wedding I need to get the rest of this food put away for the winter.  I always think of that childrens book Blueberries for Sal when I am preserving food.  Lucky for us, we have not had any wildlife encounters on our food picking journey (although the tractor driver did leave me and Kurt in the middle of the fields with my children on the wagon yelling to stop; he was a real champ.  He wanted to get back to eat his lunch.)

The boys went on the fathers and son's campout trip with our church group and the girls went to Sees Candies together to pick out our favorite chocolate.  We also watched Soul Surfer together; what a great example of bravely and strength Bethany Hamilton is.  My girls loved it.

Today is my mother's birthday and we had the chance to have my parents over for dinner and apple pie.  The children spent the afternoon creating cards and papers with many items glued on and colored.  They aren't anything spectacular to look at but as you watch the cards being worked on throughout the day you can see how much they love their Grandma.

When I write down or remember through photographs the many things we do each week or month or season or year sometimes it helps me to not feel like such a non-productive, trashed mom who always needs to be doing more, and doing it better.  If I just keep going, and stop to remember some good points along the way I realize, hey, I'm ok.  I think that God is glad I am doing my best to raise a family and enjoy art and my creativity.  So this week I will do exactly what I did last week - keep going, and write it down - the good, the bad and the ugly! OH, and I'm going to smile more this week too!


Thursday, September 15, 2011


I am making an attempt to put my world back together.  Again.
I've been in a dark place.  Again.  I've isolated myself; it hasn't been pretty and I need to re-group.  I have been thinking a lot about what got me there again.  The summer was such a high for me.  I felt like I owned our time and I went to Brave Girl Camp and I wrote out what I wanted from life and I was on TRACK!  Little by little, I stopped doing the things I needed to be doing to take care of myself.  I stopped doing my art (there just isn't time), my prayers were routine, I wasn't going to the gym enough times each week (there isn't enough time) , I wasn't sitting down for 15 minutes each day to breathe deep and focus (there just isn't time), I wasn't drinking enough water (too much running around), I wasn't journaling (I'm too tired at night), I was just skimming over my scriptures and not really learning anything, I was reading too much (of a book that wasn't uplifting me), I wasn't working on a project or trying to finish anything or setting any new goals.  For me, not wanting to complete a project or start a new one is a sure sign that I am not myself.  I let stress and no money and school schedules overcome me and beat me down.  Basically, I let everything slip.  Including my happiness, my patience, my self-respect, my body, myself.  I know this sounds dramatic; and for me, it has been.  I also know its pretty stupid because I KNOW BETTER than to let myself do this.

Two things happened within 48 hours that woke me up to where I was at.  Again.  First, a woman pulled over on the road where I was waiting in the carpool line to pick up my kids from school and screamed at me about how she didn't like our carpool line and that I shouldn't sit exactly where I was.  I yelled back at her.  Then I rolled up my window and asked myself what just happened.  Normally, I would have just smiled and said, 'have a nice day'.   But I actually engaged myself in this ridiculous scene.  I was embarassed.  The following night my two year old was upset with me for not giving him something he wanted right before dinner and so he went over and pulled my camera down off the counter and broke it.  I yelled at him.  I made him feel really sad and he immediately started crying and broke down.  I was embarassed.  He's two and really, how old am I?  And who's fault is it that the camera was not put away in the case so that it was there for him to see?  Mine.  Double strike out.
Since that evening, I've been having all sorts of conversations with myself.  None of which have revealed anything very pretty.  I have come to realize that I know what I need to do to stay in a good place.  I MUST MAKE THE TIME for these things.  The consequences are bad when I don't.  The consequences are good when I do.  Basically, I've been off balance.  I have had too much of some things and not enough or none of others.  I've been spread too thin in all the wrong places; this dillutes me and my happiness and I don't want that anymore.
It sounds so dumb, but I just need to make myself do the things I need to do.  And then I need to TRACK MY PROGRESS.  When I stop recording my results I FORGET that I really do need to do these things.  I need to remember my path and stay true to it.

I need to drink water.  I need to pray.  I need to exercise.  I need to create and paint and do things that bring me happiness.  I need patience and understanding and I only have that when I am taking advantage of what I know from the teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  I need to snuggle and read with my kids.  I need to be outdoors.  I need to remember my goals and what type of life I really want to lead.  I need to walk into the light and out of the darkness of exhaustion, stress, pain, guilt, and anger.  I need to remember my goals and that I wanted to learn to fly and that starting over again is ok.  I am re-committing today to starting over again, even though I messed up.  Even though my weeks are off and I've missed some and I have to re-focus.  Time to get back in some sort of balance.
Time to sail the ship on the right course again,