Monday, February 25, 2013


Dear Poor Little Neglected Blog,

I'm so sorry to have taken such a leave of absence from you.  It's not that I have nothing to write about.  Believe me.  Bridget alone could take up 30 posts all on her own.  It's just that by the time I actually have time to sit and write anything meaningful (I think that may have only happened once.), my brain is fuzzy and discombobulated and I can't spit out a coherent sentence.  All my writing efforts are being used to compose papers--the topics of which are of no particular interest to anyone outside the educational field, and even then they seem unappreciated by anyone but myself, who finds it necessary to spend hours precisely honing phrases and paragraphs that only become forgotten and meaningless as soon as the SEND button is pushed.

Sometimes I wonder if the effort is worth it.

Until I'm convinced otherwise, I'll continue to press forward at a grueling pace--the likes of which I've never known.  I hope to never again come across an occasion that necessitates anything resembling what I've put myself through in the last few months....if I survive that long.

So, for the quickest of updates: 

Mike has some work to keep him busy for the next few months.  It's a huge relief.

Maggie just finished up playing basketball on the Jr. High team.  She was not quite the best player on the team, however, there is some potential there, and she wants to keep playing, so we'll make a concerted effort to play a lot this summer.  Especially now that we have a hoop. Merry Christmas! 

Brooke is becoming quite a little writer.  Her compositions in 4th grade are really impressive, and I hope that she'll continue working on both that and her art. 

Katie is a hard one to pin down.  She's so well-rounded that nothing in particular about her stands out, except this witty little sense of humor she's developing.  She says the funniest things, and completely on purpose, too.  Love how she laughs at her own wit. 

Bridget--aye de mi!  I seriously could write a book about this kid.  Most recently, she decided she wanted a short haircut.  When getting ready for church one day, she donned striped tights, a tutu-type skirt, layered shirts and a pair of silver converse sneakers.  She asked, "Mom, do I look cute or cool?"  I said, "Very cool."  Her response with a nod was a resounding, "Good." 

Dixon is going to be the death of me at this point.  I suppose he's a typical 3 year old boy, but I cannot keep up with him!  He's into E V E R Y T H I N G !!!!  And don't even get me started on the sound effects....

Gretchen is still the sweetest, chubbiest, cutest, best little thing walking on two legs.  Her teeth are finally in and she's decided that she's too good to go down stairs backward, so she walks straight down them like a boss.  This is probably my favorite age because now is the time that their personality fully comes to light and I LOVE seeing who these little people really are!

I'm still trying to maintain (regain? just not lose any more?) sanity while going to school, being mom, and 1st counselor in the YW Presidency.  Oh, and on top of all that, we (Mike, Maggie, Brooke, Katie and I) decided it would be a good idea to join our Stake's production of Savior of the World, so we've been busy with rehearsals every Saturday and will soon take the stage on April 18, 19, and 20th at the Bountiful Regional Center. (You're invited!!!)

Are you as tired as I am??? No.  No, that would just not be possible.  If so, tell me so I can pray for your ever-lovin' heart.


Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Holy Ghost

We are discussing the Holy Ghost with the YW tomorrow, and I made this handout to go along with it. The resolution isn't high--I printed 4 to a page....feel free to use it for non-commercial use. Unfortunately I am not that tech-savvy, so what you see is what you get! Just right-click on the image to copy.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

Something for Sunday

I'm always amazed at the ability of the Holy Ghost to teach me, even when I'm busy trying to keep my children from eating crayons, shouting at each other down the pew and wailing for a bottle in the middle of the Sacrament.  These teaching moments are just that--moments--and can be easily missed.  I know that I don't often enough find myself in a place to recognize these teachings, but I'm always so grateful when I do.  Today's little nugget came when one of the young men in our ward shared his testimony through Alma 37:37, which reads:

Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.

As he read the scripture, my mind stopped on the phrase, "and he will direct thee for good."  What the Spirit taught me in that moment was that the promise was not that the Lord will show us the right answer--the Lord is not interested in spoon feeding us, nor is there always one right answer--but that he will direct us for good.
We're here on the earth to make our own decisions, and we do so based on our own intelligence, study, and life experiences. Sometimes those decisions are between a good choice and a bad one, and those are the ones the Lord is very interested in directing us in.  The Lord beckons us to counsel with him so that we will continue progressing on the right path. I think that sometimes when we feel our prayers are left unanswered, it's because the decision we're seeking counsel in is between two or more good things, and as much as the Lord loves us, there's no need for him to step in and direct--we're already pointed toward the good, and that is what he is most interested in.  That's not to say that asking the Lord for help in choosing between two good things is frivolous or that it's unnecessary, because we're commanded to counsel with the Lord in all our doings. (I think the reason for that is twofold. One, because we can't always discern between the good and the bad, especially when emotions are involved in decision-making, and two, we need to be in the habit of always seeking the source of all truth.)  But when searching for answers, or for confirmation about a conclusion we've drawn, we must realize that the Lord's silence does not constitute abandonment.  His direction comes when there is the threat of straying from the good.What a beautiful principle!
And what a tender mercy the Lord showed me in the middle of a chaotic meeting, where for a fleeting moment, the heavens opened and the Spirit taught.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

A Bullet Point Summer

Hi there! Long time no post....

So here's the scoop....

*Today marks our 13 year anniversary.  It's been a bumpy road, but I couldn't have married a kinder man who never shows his embarrassment when my crazy starts to show. He even joins in every now and then! We celebrated on Saturday with a showing of The Dark Knight Rises, (Why, oh why, did Tom Hardy's face have to be covered the ENTIRE movie???) and a yummy dinner in SLC at PF Chang's. Love you, Babe!

*I was released from my beloved Gospel Doctrine calling and was made 1st Counselor in the Young Women Presidency.  I have never in my life been so excited or so happy about a call! For the past few months I've felt such a pull to these girls and now I know why.  I love how I can see the tender mercies of the Lord in action! And the women I get to work with? They're seriously the Dream Team.

*On Thursday I begin my graduate program through Grand Canyon University, for my Masters in Education: Elementary Education. My options were somewhat limited in terms of schools I could attend because I already have a Bachelor Degree, but I'm not already a licensed teacher. Grand Canyon's online classes, tuition rates, and timeline made it the perfect fit for me, and I'm over the moon to finally see my path in life. I doubt I'll do any substitute teaching at NDPA this year...much to the chagrin of the teachers.  It's so nice to be loved and needed, isn't it?

*Thanks to a kind and generous Home Teacher, we'll spend my birthday (Saturday) soaking up the rays and splashing around at Cherry Hill. Chelsea amazingly volunteered to take Gretchen for the day so we can have a little more freedom to do as we please!

*Before I knew that Wednesday nights were going to be scheduled for the foreseeable future, I made reservations for our family to attend the Brigham City Temple Open House next week, the night of Maggie's 11th birthday. The girls can hardly contain their excitement that they can actually walk through a temple!  I have to admit, I'm pretty pumped myself!

*Thirteen days. School starts in thirteen days and not a moment too soon!  For some reason this summer has been different from previous ones.  We started out on top of the world--went fishing and played tennis and went to the library and the park--but about 3 weeks ago, it was like a switch got flipped and everyone is at everyone's throats!!!  I really truly in my heart believe that we have just been together too much. The kids need to be away from me (and me them!), and probably more importantly, they need to be away from each other.  They've lost some of their individuality and autonomy and need the separation that comes with being in different grades, different classrooms, with different friends and different teachers.  We are ALL ready for school to start so we can go back to liking each other again. :)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Expect the Unexpected

Bridget had been all kinds of excited for me to sub in her Kindergarten class again--well, up until today, that is.  

Looking back, she was kind of quiet on the way to school, but I'm sure I had my mind on other things as I usually do first thing in the morning, so I didn't really notice.  

I started my day out on the playground, making sure hundreds of spring-fevered children didn't attempt to fling themselves (or each other) off the top of the slide before the morning whistle even had a chance to blow. I remember seeing that familiar pink backpack resting neatly against the school wall, marking Bridget's place at the front of the line.  I only remember because I thought it was unusual--my disaster of a daughter doing anything other than chucking her backpack on the ground, only to come to me in despair over her "lost" belongings.  

Eight-twenty signaled the I-don't-know-how-no-one-got-trampled-in-the-mad-chaos transition from playground to classroom, and school was officially underway.  As I headed into Mrs. Hansen's room, I expected your usual Kindergarten chatter, but instead, I saw a dozen little bodies huddled around that familiar pink backpack, whispering excitedly.  I knew it was something, I just wasn't expecting this....

Yep.  Your eyes are not deceiving you.  That is in fact, a baby bird, loving placed in a nest of blanket and stealthily brought to school in the bottom of an emptied-out, familiar pink backpack.  This contraband turned into the ultimate show-and-tell for our little criminal, who's official street name is now Mama Bird.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

5 Minute Update.

It's getting more and more difficult to keep up with my blog since I've been working so much lately.  It's a good thing--the work, I mean--but I miss my littles as well as having a somewhat orderly house.  Mike is a great SAHD, but unfortunately, multi-tasking is not his strong suit. I try not to be too critical, but coming home to a crazy house is not good for my already crazy head.  On the upside, he's got an uncanny ability to make it to the pond above our house to go fishing 3-4 times per week.  If he didn't have 2-3 children in tow each time, we may have to have words.
Still no luck on his job search.  He consistently finds himself in the top three or four with a second interview, but invariably returns with, "We just had so many great candidates," or, "We went with someone else, but here's a $10/hr. job we could offer you."  I just don't get it.  I know, I know, "It will all work out." Unfortunately, "It will all work out" doesn't pay the bills.

On a lighter note, I was able to snap a few shots of the kiddos on Easter Sunday.  I'm going to play around on the computer and try to get them cropped/edited the way I want, then blow them up onto engineer prints @ Staples.  Can't believe how big these kiddos are getting!  Not much longer and Maggie will be in Young Women's, and Bridget is only a kindergartener for 5 more weeks!  Where has the time gone???