Wednesday, May 18, 2016

My heart, it is a breakin

I have been trying in vain to not think too much about how our lives are going to change soon. Only because if I think about it too long I start to cry.  And my mascara is expensive so I don't want to reapply.

Kate is leaving in a month to go to BYU. She is going to be amazing and do amazing things and experience amazing things.  And I could not be happier for her. She has worked hard and earned this moment. Even though she already knew she got in to BYU, we still gave her a surprise party. Cuz we're fun like that. Jeff's cousin is an amazing baker and he sent us these cookies to help with the surprise.

I have been trying to soak up every moment with her.  I have always been like that as a mom, all too aware how quickly it goes. I love being a mom, I love being her mom and I am so thankful for every day I have had with her. I would honestly shave my head, or eat cooked liver, or do a polar dip, just to be able to go back and spend one more day with her as a little girl.  (Those were the worst things I could imagine).  But what a blessing to know her as an adult and get to experience that as well.

She is an amazing sister, unifying everyone and connecting us with her unique gift of get-along-with-everbody-ness.

And oh the joy of watching her and Julia be best friends since birth.  What a gift to both of them and to me. They have had a friend everywhere they have ever moved.

I know I am not the first or the last parent to ever send a child out in to the world.  But its a first for me. Check back soon for more blubbering as we all adjust to our new normal. Only 5 kids at home. What will I do with all my time')

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Winter Camp

Julia and Anne Marie and I had a unique opportunity to go camping in the winter. Well, mostly Anne Marie. We got to spend the night in snow caves that the Young Women of our Stake dug themselves. Well, mostly Anne Marie.  As a leader I had the choice to sleep in a cabin on a mattress.  Which is what I chose.  Not because I'm afraid of the cold but because I'm afraid of snow caving in on me and extinguishing my life.  Julia and Jeff ( who came up with a bunch of other dads and leaders to help out) ended up sleeping in the back of Jeff's car. But 12 year old Anne Marie and her brave friend lasted the whole night. Amazing.

Some of the women leaders toughed it out in snow caves.  We really did try and make sure any young woman who wanted to had the opportunity to sleep in a snow structure.  If there were any left over, some brave women snuggled into the snow and were actually able to sleep.  Those of us in the cabin woke up to find every inch of floor space, and the chairs and furniture, covered with young women who became too cold and found their way to the warmth of the heated cabin.  It was a super fun activity and once again these girls learned they can do hard things and that some of their leaders aren't as tough;)  But the 70 pound little girl was the winner of the weekend.  She toughed it out had a great time too.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Thank you kids and good friends who are more organized

I was at the gym when I got a text from my friend,"Is Nora a thank you kid?" Um, what?

I had no idea what she was talking about. But she quickly filled me in on the fact that I was missing an assembly where Nora and other children were being honored for their great behavior. 

And at some point a note came home that I never saw. 

So sweaty and all the way across town, I hopped in my car and rushed over, calling Jeff and letting him know to get over there as fast as possible. We both made it. Just barely. 
I would do anything for my kids. Including showing up in public looking like a sweaty mess. Because she doesn't care what I looked like. She just knows I was there.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

A senior

It really isn't possible to describe what it feels like.

You have a baby. A beautiful, red headed little girl who instantly becomes your whole world. 

And you are tired and unsure of yourself as a parent. But you know that if love is the most important ingredient for being a good parent, then you are golden.

And you cannot possibly imagine, as you try to figure out what year she will graduate and that you will be 42 when she does, that the day will come upon you before you are ready. And before you are done hearing her voice every day or before you are ready to not have her right down the hall, she will suddenly be an adult and ready to leave home.

You will find yourself happy for her because it is the natural order of things. But you will find yourself tearing up as she orders her cap and gown. You will cry when you see her senior pictures. You will DARE her to even mention that it's her last Thanksgiving before she leaves on her mission.

She will bring things up about moving out because she needs closure and she needs to know you really will miss her as much as you say you will. But part of her also loves seeing you get emotional and cry because it means that she is that special to you, that important.

Back when you held her in your arms for the first time and through the sleepless nights as she cried, no one could have ever told you that it would be over in a blink. At least not in a way that you would believe it.

But it's true. Believe me. Enjoy every hard moment. Every pair of mismatched socks, every bad dream where they want to crawl into bed with you. Eventually they will stop asking to get in bed with you. Eventually they will not need you to brush their hair or give them a bath. Eventually they will apply to college and plan their life and be ready to be on their own.

We always need our parents. We are always grateful that they are there for us. But it changes and it's supposed to and it is really, really hard. 

So enjoy the fact that the kids need all of our extra money and time and effort. Because one day we will wish with all our hearts for just one more day of it. 

She will sit and apply to her school of choice and be so excited for the next phase of her life and you will just want one more day.

 One more day of her being a tiny little girl who wraps her arms around your neck and doesn't want to let go. Because now it's your turn to never want to let go. 

And she will have to peel me off of her just like I did with her everytime I had to leave the house. I will cry and perhaps wail just like she did. 

The joys and sorrows of parenthood. I wouldn't change it for anything. And I can't, cuz I "get" to do this 5 more times. 


Friday, October 30, 2015

Evening on Sobway I mean Broadway

Kate and Julia performed in the Chamber Choirs annual evening on Broadway. It was amazing. Kate had a senior solo and sang a song from Little Women called Astonishing. She was, it was, amazing and astonishing. Her father and I cried through the whole thing.

 I had listened to her rehearse at home and it was beautiful. And then when she performed it was as if something lit upon her and she sang it/belted it like I've never heard before. It still gives me chills when I think of it.

Then they sang a duet. For Good from Wicked. More crying from me, them and people in the audience. Two sisters, best friends, one getting ready to leave home in the next year. Exactly. This mama could hardly stand it. It was beautiful.

Of course there were other kids there who also did a great job. 

But the highlight for us was our girls. I will never forget it.

Not as long as I live.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Trying something new

IJulia decided that this was her year to play a sport. She participated in the triathlon at girls camp this summer and it lit the running and swimming bug for her.

So she ran during the summer and then when school started she joined the swim team.

Her goal was to just improve, beat her own time and do something different. She accomplished all of those things.

We were really proud of her as she shaved seconds off her time, improved her starts and got to know more girls from school. I can't imagine deciding to join the swim team as a junior in high school. It was so adventurous of her. 

My kids inspire me all the time. They have shown me again and again that you don't have to be afraid. The world is it there to enjoy and explore and to have new experiences. 

Some, like swimming, I will have to take their word for it. But we all can find ways to expand our view to include things we have never done before. 

Otherwise what's the point? 

And to illustrate that I give you "I lived" byOne Republic 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The stuntman and the cheerleader

Our local high school cheer leaders do an annual fund raiser by putting on a little cheer camp. Nora has participated before but this was Henry's first time. He was the only boy. Boys are not cheerleaders, they are stuntman. It's an important distinction. 

They are bases, help the cheer leaders do stunts and just there to be muscle and hang out with a lot of cute girls:)

He's there, if you look close. He did not dance and refused to have his picture taken with the high school cheer leaders. But he said he wants to do it again next year. I was surprised because I thought that his refusal to have his picture taken meant he hated it. But I think he really liked being in front of a crowd and hanging out with a bunch of girls. That sounds just like his dad. Hahahahaha! So guess he knows a good thing when he sees it. ;)

Nora LOVED it. She did not stop jumping and bouncing the whole time. I was not a cheer leader. Don't be shocked. I never had anything against the cheer leaders at my school. Many of them were my friends.  I just like giving my kids different options when they are little so that they can figure out what they like on their own. Cheer leader, band, football, cross country, Key Club, it's all great as far as I'm concerned.

Who knows, maybe some day they will be a cheer leader and a stuntman for longer than an evening. Either way, it was totally worth the 30 bucks each just to see them NOT afraid in front of packed bleachers. 

I love my kids. I want them to find joy in what they do. And that will look different for all of them. And isn't that wonderful?

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