Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


I'm optimistic about the new year.  I just know that one of these mornings we are going to wake up to healed bodies and no more sickness.  I just know that I will be able to take a break from the worry of hospital visits and repeat surgeries.

I'm not sure exactly what the new year holds for me or for my family but I'm thankful for the fresh start that is included with the turning of the calendar.  And it's a good reminder to me that any day we decided to begin again it can be day 1.  So when, come March, I find myself too far from where I had hoped to be in the new year I will begin again and that is ok.  I hope you give yourself that grace as well.

Happy New Year!
Emily

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Tis' the Season

I love how the Christmas season brings out such great imagination and play with my children.  I love how Emma and Faye made a stable and manger for Sheffield to lay in.  Classic.  There is something so magical about having a small baby at Christmas time to remind us of Jesus Christ as a baby.  It always makes me see Mary in a whole new light and to think about what she truly endured and the circumstances she was in.


I also love my 'help' in the kitchen.  Faye helped me for about an hour just rolling around some dough and adding huge amounts of flour to it as she played.  This brings back such good memories of doing the same thing in the kitchen with my mother and I hope it gives my children a desire to learn how to cook good food and not be afraid to try new things.  


I love these adorable faces!
Sailing through December faster than I would like,
E

Monday, December 15, 2014

Rain, Snow or Shine

A few months ago I decided that we would take a self-timer family photo every week after church.  It is amazing to see already how much everyone is growing and how quickly the little ones change.  TO say that my children are not thrilled about this would be accurate.  Especially yesterday when it was snowing.  I'm hoping we made a memory too.  And for some crazy reason I also think in some small way it teaches them that they are what is most important to me.

This holiday season we asked each of them what is the number one thing that matters the most to them for it to feel like Christmas.  It's amazing how many 'running around crazy' type of things can drop off the list when we are reminded that what they care about the most is decorating the tree together as a family, reading a Christmas story together every night, and driving around our neighborhood to look at lights.  The only other big request was to go ice skating.  My children are such a good reminder to me that what they love is feeling safe, warm, and loved.  They don't need it all, they just need what matters most.



Happy Holidays!
E

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lights

I put white lights up on the porch for the birthday celebrations and I figured they can stay until New Years at this point.  The last few strings that I still need to put up are waiting for me in this bucket.  My children plugged them in.  Magic, just like that!  I love being a mom.
Sailing On,
E

Sunday, November 16, 2014

The first wave of November

   November is a fun month around here.  We celebrate three birthdays, our wedding anniversary, and Thanksgiving.  Add to that the baby blessing for Sheffield and it's a pretty amazing month.

   I keep trying to replay the events of last sunday in my mind so I can memorize them to perfection.  We had a really sweet blessing for Sheffield and I could feel the spirit calming and brining peace.  I loved seeing the cirlce of Priesthood standing there in my home.

  Then we had a great dinner with so many people we love.  Grandma and Grandpa Smith brought a delicious smoked turkey that we all loved.

   After dinner we celebrated Faye's birthday.  She loved every second of it.  With every gift that she opened she was hugging it, jumping up and down and dancing around singing 'yea yea yea!'  She made all of us laugh so much so hard that my cheecks hurt from smiling so much.  I haven't had that problem in a long time.  She opened cards and then sat down and read for a good 90 seconds out loud things like 'I love you Faye.  Happy Birthday to you and your horse Maca.  I hope you have a fun time. '  It was SO funny.  Of course she has no idea how to read but she just acted like she could and it was awesome.  Maca, by the way, is her imaginary horse that she rides all over the house.  She is such an energetic fun girl to have around.  It was delightful for me as a mother to see the way my other children gathered around her and cheered her on.  No one felt like it was unfair that all of the attention was on her and they enjoyed watching her show as much as I did.  They are a pretty incredible bunch of people.  At one point Faye hugged a mini candy bar that she received from her cousin, Elsie.  The Olsen family gave her a purple tutu wrapped up in a baby wipes box.  When she tore off the wrapping paper and saw the wipes box she jumped up and cheered "yea, wipes!".  It must be true that happiess is a state of being because Faye was happy with the baby wipes:)  When the box was opened and she saw the tutu she was ecstatic.
I'm sure feeling blessed. 
Sailing On, 
E




Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Tuesdays

On Tuesdays when the 5 oldest children go to school (they are home with me the other 4 days)  I ususally wait for them on the front porch with my camera.  That way I can get a picture of their latest art project and remember all the exciting things they all want to tell me ALL AT THE SAME TIME.



Yesterday when they arrived home I made sure to get some photos since it was crazy hair day (Clark's wig is the best).  Savanna is usually the one who so quickly wants to hold Sheffield and cover him in kisses so she soon had him outside and we had some adorable photos.   I'm struck by how quickly he is losing his newborn looking face.  And while he is so rapidly growing so are his siblings who amaze me all the time.  I wholeheartedly believe that family is the thing that matters the very most.  And that having these siblings is exactly how these children are supposed to be learning and growing.

Feeling tired and thankful,
E

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Things I love

Today is the first day in a very long time that I have had time to sit down at the computer for longer than 3 minutes.  I realized that I have not been taking enough photographs lately and that I wanted to change that because it makes me sad when I don't.


There are just too many silly moments and fun things that I forget about when I don't take millions of pictures and I confess that I would rather photograph them than write them down in each of their journals.  I did a little writing in journals today and, well, it was March of this year when I last did that.






What I realized at the computer tonight is that my love of photography is live and well.  What I also learned is how much I LOVE looking through photos of my family.  I actually found myself laughing out loud all alone here in the office late at night.  Just by looking through these photos I remember the  epic General Conference weekend we had celebrating Christian's 10th birthday, Clark's newly lost tooth (the first one!), Faye's sassy personality, how I felt watching my children in their primary program and then later singing 'The Family is of God' for us at my niece's baby blessing, how much we all love Sheffield, what it feels like to say goodbye to summer and hello to fall, how much I love my parents and how thankful I am for the time they have spent here this past month doing my laundry and taking care of children for me while I rest, how messy my kitchen is on a daily basis because of all that we do in it (and it's a great kitchen and I'm thankful!), and truly how beautiful the world is.





I also remembered that I love to write and that I stopped writing here because I thought that I needed to have a bunch of people who read my blog or that I needed to have something exciting to report about or some amazing project to show off.  Guess what?  My family is my amazing project, they followers who matter, and they are what fills up my heart.  I'm blessed and I forget just how much I am blessed way too often.  So here's to remembering what matters most and for doing what brings me joy.



Sometimes I spend time wishing I could give my children more trips, more 'opportunity' (whatever that means), more lessons and a bigger house with their own bedrooms.  Today I just wish for them to be able to retain and remember some of the happiness that they have felt this year.  I wish for them to love their siblings for their entire lives the way they love little Sheffield right now and for them to be the best they can be as they follow God's plan for them individually.  I wish for them to remember to be as happy as a two year old licking cookie dough off of a beater, and, most of all, to always remember that the family IS of God.

Sailing On,
E

Friday, October 3, 2014

Welcome new baby

We are busy loving on this sweet little boy over here.  I'm not feeling very motivated to do much of anything, and three weeks has already gone by so quickly.  I'll just be here soaking it up as much as I can.
Sailing On,
E

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Photos

The good news about July going by so quickly is that I only have another four weeks of being pregnant.  The bad news is that 4 (or less) weeks is not enough for me to get everything done that I want to do before baby comes.



July included a lot of backyard fires, pulling weeds, watching Christian play baseball, the Sheffield family reunion, a trip to the ER for Madeline via ambulance and a diagnosis of Bells Palsy, working at Pure Bliss Shaved Ice, trying to clean up my life and get rid of things, and some good sewing hours.

For today all I can say is that I'm going to keep going every day when I wake up in the morning and I hope that's enough.  I'm not promising much else these days.

I read this quote every day:
Every one of us has times when we need to know things will get better. Moroni spoke of it in the Book of Mormon as “hope for a better world.” For emotional health and spiritual stamina, everyone needs to be able to look forward to some respite, to something pleasant and renewing and hopeful, whether that blessing be near at hand or still some distance ahead. It is enough just to know we can get there, that however measured or far away, there is the promise of “good things to come.”
My declaration is that this is precisely what the gospel of Jesus Christ offers us, especially in times of need. There is help. There is happiness. There really is light at the end of the tunnel. It is the Light of the World, the Bright and Morning Star, the “light that is endless, that can never be darkened.”  It is the very Son of God Himself. In loving praise far beyond Romeo’s reach, we say, “What light through yonder window breaks?” It is the return of hope, and Jesus is the Sun.  To any who may be struggling to see that light and find that hope, I say: Hold on. Keep trying. God loves you. Things will improve. Christ comes to you in His “more excellent ministry” with a future of “better promises.” He is your “high priest of good things to come.”      -Jeffrey R. Holland

I hope it brings you the reassurance it brings me :)
Sailing On,
E

Thursday, June 19, 2014

A new cousin and lovely light

This summer has been made all the better by the arrival of our new baby cousin, Clara June.


E


Thursday, June 12, 2014

A new Mutton Busting Champion

This past weekend was the Elizabeth Rodeo.  We love this rodeo every year and this year was no exception.  Clark was so excited that he is finally five and could ride.  Faye was sad that she couldn't; she kept telling everyone that she was going to be riding on a 'baby bull'.  I don't think so Faye:)

Clark did such a great job of hanging on tight and he was so happy to get the champion trophy.  The smile on that boy's face!  I love it. 



We all had a blast at the parade as well.  We were able to check out the flight for life helicopter and the children loved the big blow up slide.  Kurt and I just so much enjoy the small town feeling and walking around with ease; not being in a hurry and being together.  



One of these days we will get ourselves moved out of town.  We love it out there! 
E




Growing up faster than I can keep up with


Savanna turned 12 last month!
That involved ear piercing, a Harry Potter birthday party, and entry into the Young Womens' program at church.  She is now getting ready to go to girls camp this summer and all the while I'm wondering how I didn't notice that this day was coming so quickly.
Putting on the "Harry Potter" birthday party about killed me.  I LOVE having people come over and get together and have fun; however I don't care for specific themes.  I tried to keep reminding myself that I was doing it all because I love Savanna so much :).
Not all of the girls who came appreciated the worm races, but they loved wand decorating and potion making.  
Later that night all of my family came over for a barbacue dinner and ice cream cake.  It was a fun filled day for sure which I think is perfect for Savanna because she is always bringing fun and games everywhere we go!  She is the creative fun for all of us 90% of the time.  She is kind and loves to share and help her younger siblings.  

I keep looking at her; with her earrings in and her new glasses {not these from the party but her real ones:} and I have to remind myself how amazing these spirits are.  In 12 short years she has learned so much and taught us so much and in less time than that she will be out in the world learning more and establishing her own personal life on her own.  It's a pretty awesome transformation that takes place in such a short period of time.  My trick is to try to figure out how to do a better job of the years that I do have them with me. 
Have a great year being 12 Savvie! 
E




Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Giddy Up Baby Blanket

I'm so happy to have something finsihed for the new baby.  After I had finished up Clark's cowboy quilt that I gave him for Christmas I realized I had all of these scraps that I would much rather use than have sit in another pile for way too long.  My goal was to use what I already had, so I just made it up as I went along and I'm happy with how it turned out.

I knew that I wanted it to be super soft and flexible for baby so I just put a grey minky fabric on the back and then did some very basic quilting.  A navy herringbone binding and yea, it is finished!  I am also currently using up the rest of the scraps to make a little changing pad to have with me in the car.


Below is Clark's quilt, and now his baby brother has a matching one.  I hope he likes it.


E