Monday, December 7, 2009

It Has been too long! It is all in the perspective!

So, the reason it has been so long since I have blogged is that we have been in transition since May of this year. We were losing our house due to my husband being out of work for over a year. Then he started to build us a new house on our farm land and it seemed that time and time again he was thwarted in his efforts. He almost cut is finger off. Then he pulled 2 vertebrae in his back out. Finally that healed only to have him fall off a ladder and shatter his elbow resulting in his having to have surgery on it and now not have use of it. Because the bone was shattered, they removed it and just used tendons and ligaments to hold the bones in place. He can lift about 2 lbs. with that arm and that is all.
However, we were blessed that the house was finished enough for us to move into! And by finished I mean that there were walls and floors and a roof.
We moved in with no flooring, i.e. only the sub-floor is in. We have no running water as the well filled up and has yet to be finished. The solar panels arrived late and incomplete so the only electricity we have is through a generator that we have on for most of the day, but it runs on gas so that is expensive. We had only 1 toilet when we moved in, now we have 3, but we still have to fill the tanks by hand to flush them.
Water to drink and wash with are carried in by hand, we are blessed enough to have a kind neighbor 3 miles down the road who lets us get water from him.
James got the roofing on a couple of weeks ago because there was a storm coming. We were blessed to not have the storm hit us. However while we were away for Thanksgiving with family it rained hard for a day, and the roof leaked. We came home to large puddles on our floors. And quite a bit of the drywall in the ceilings being ruined.
We were blessed though, the water didn't land on anything important. No beds were wet, and none of our electronics were destroyed. We were truly blessed!
The next day James went out and bought us a wood burning stove. Did i mention we have had no heat? And that it has been getting down to freezing at night. I have been having to bundle up the children as warm as possible. But now we have a wood burning stove and it is keeping us at about 65 degrees in the house.
You know, it is all about perspective! For as much as i feel we are living much like people did 100 years ago, we are truly blessed! I have 4 beautiful children that are healthy and happy. I have a wonderful husband who works himself to death to provide for us. I have a Heavenly Father that has watched over us every step of the way and provided for us even when it has looked like we would have nothing.
Trust me there are moments when i feel like i might just stress out and die, but then i think about how much we have been blessed and i become truly grateful for what we have been given.
This season, my prayer is that you will see all that the Lord has done for you in your life and appreciate His hand in all things. I know that i probably cannot even comprehend all the other things that the Lord has done for me and does for me on a daily basis. However for the things i can see, i am truly grateful!
Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Has it been that long?

Oh my gosh! So i log into my Blog here and see that it has actually been a month and a half since i have posted! What the heck? Man have i been busy or what?
Well, it all started when we decided to move and build a house out on our land in Buttonwillow. We decided to do that and with me thinking we were going to be getting out of our house in May or early June. I decided the best thing to do was to take the kids and go down to my mom and dad's for the summer. So i packed up the house as much as i could and trekked down there for the summer. Only to realize that we weren't going to be getting out of the house till the end of the summer. But by then, i had already moved all the kids clothes down there and signed them up for piano lessons down there for the summer.
So, where does that leave me, you ask? Well, that has left me going back and forth from L.A. where my girls are, to Bakersfield, where my husband is, every week this summer.
The only reason i am on the computer right now is because i came home on Friday, and i am leaving tomorrow to go back for piano and then coming back on Thursday, and then going back down next Wednesday.
I never thought i would say this, but i CANNOT WAIT for summer to be over and for us to get back into our routine! However, i am not too sure if we will be getting e regular routine anytime soon, since our house is packed, but i am not sure when the new house will be done!
I hate the interim! However, i must say that it has been good to be down at my mom's for the summer. i have been able to get a lot of fun reading done. And a bit of rest. Plus we have gone out and done fun things. Then i come home and do lots and lots of sewing!
It has also been good for me because I have been able to sit back for the first time in 11 years of marriage and take stock of where i am in life, where i want to be and what i need to do to change.
I have decided that i have no willpower! I put things off all the time instead of just doing them. I say, oh i will clean that tomorrow. Oh, i will start losing weight tomorrow. And then a year full of tomorrows have passed and i haven't done it. I need to start doing these things now, not tomorrow. So my first goals are to lose weight, read my scriptures everyday, say prayers morning and night and have family home evening with the kids once a week.
I think if i can start making those things a habit then everything else will fall into place. I know that when you put the Lord first in your life, He will always help take care of the rest. Pray for me! Pray that I will be able to achieve these goals and make them a habit before the end of the year! Please!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I'm already a butterfly, by Cherrie Call

Several weeks ago my little two-year-old daughter was playing with her toys and decided to strap on her butterfly wings. She was having a pretty good time for a while, when she got further down in the toy box and found her purple super hero cape. She wanted to put it on. When my husband tried to convince her to take of the wings, she refused. So he velcroed the cape on right over the wings. It was awkward. She yanked on it for a while to keep it from being so jagged, but she looked like a jagged purple hunchback. She tried to go with it for as long as she could, but pretty soon she flew back over to us and uttered a very profound truth. I only wish I could remember her exact toddler jargon for this. But essentially, she said, "No cape. Alrey butterfly." Think about it. You don't need a cape if you're already a butterfly! The moment I heard her say it, I knew it meant something. But it has taken a little bit of time for the meaning to unfold for me. Maybe it means something different to you. But for me, this is it. I spend a lot of time, too much time, really, trying to fit into a cape. I see my neighbor in a beautiful cape, making incredible gourmet dinners with vegetables from her backyard. It's usually on a day I hardly had time to pick up a pizza. I see songwriting friends writing songs I truly wish I had written, they're so good. I see their capes billowing in the wind. I go to the mall and try to find something that can make me look amazing, and I notice the ridiculous price tag. Capes I can't afford. I get discouraged. All the while I don't remember that I have wings! If I paid better attention, I might notice some of those super hero ladies admiring them, and wishing for them. I have my own set of gifts. My own list of things I do best. Is being a butterfly better than being a super hero? Not necessarily. But is a super hero better than a butterfly? I'd say not. Could butterflies do some of the same things that super heros can? Sometimes, maybe. If they practiced. But that's not the point. I'm already something pretty great. I'm a butterfly! I have to admit that most of the time I feel more like a caterpillar than a butterfly. But I'm starting to remember more often that I really do have wings. I want to use them to do what they're best at, and fill this world with the things that only I can give. I want to quit trying so hard to be someone else. Easier said than done, I know. I have lots of heroes in my life and I'm so grateful for them. I will always try to be more like them. But I'll try to do it in my own special butterfly way, because that's who I am. And I get the feeling that God loves butterflies quite a lot.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Celebrating US!!

I got this great article From my Time Out For Women email. I just loved it! Especially the quote from the book by Elder Ballard which explains the kind fo women that we need to be! Just great! Have a Happy Mother's day if i dont talk to everyone before then!

Celebrating US!!
Everyone's talking about us this month.Have you heard it?They are celebrating women. Oh, sure…everyone’s calling it “Mother’s Day”...but we know what it really is. It’s a celebration of women…every single one of us. We really believe that. All women are represented here at TOFW. Those that fit the traditional "mother’s day" card recipient and those who do not. And while we will all take time to honor and thank OUR moms, really, we want this year’s holiday to be about all of us. And so, this Mother’s Day we celebrate…
The service we give.
The time we sacrifice.
The love we share.
The lessons we teach.
The examples we are.
The SWEET ASSURANCE we bring to the lives around us.
This is a holiday about each of us...for each of us.

Elder Ballard’s new book Daughters of God shares some of the most powerful counsel from a latter-day prophet given on the subject of women. He specifically shares what we should be focusing on as we strive to become "a woman of influence."

"More than ever before we need women of faith, virtue, vision, and charity, as the Relief Society declaration proclaims. We need women who can hear and who will respond to the voice of the Lord, women who at all costs will defend and protect the family. We don’t need women who want to be like men, sound like men, dress like men, drive like some men drive, or act like men. We do need women who rejoice in their womanhood and have a spiritual confirmation of their identity, their value, and their eternal destiny. Above all, we need women who will stand up for truth and righteousness and decry evil at every turn and simply say, "Lord, here am I, send me." (p. 64-65)So let this month be a celebration of all the women in your life...but mostly, let it be a celebration of YOU. "

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Errand from the Lord

I was talking to my Friend the other day and we were talking about our kids. And how at times we lose our temper and yell and scream and treat them in ways that we would never treat other people. And it got me thinking. And this is what I thought:

Our children are not property, bought and paid for, for us to use and abuse as we wish. But precious spirits entrusted to us by the Lord. To rear and raise to teach them to love and serve the Lord. To love them the way the Lord would love them if He was here in our place. We as mothers have been given a stewardship over our children not dominion. We are to be the voice, spirit and embodiment of the Lord to our children here on earth. To love, serve and raise our children just as He did before us in the pre-existence when we were all there with Him together. This life is a time to prepare to meet God again and we need to use this time to prepare ourselves and our children, in righteousness, so that we can all be together with Him again someday. If we do not treat our children with the love and respect that they deserve, then why would they want to be with us forever?

I need to remember that sometimes. I find myself yelling or getting upset by things, that in the eternal perspective have no bearing. That in the long run, mean nothing. In the end who will care if the dishes weren't done that day, or if they dropped jam onto my newly mopped floor? Who will remember that they didn't pick up their toys off the floor in their room, or that they left toothpaste in the sink? No one will. But my children will remember if their mom played with them, hugged them and told them that they were loved. My Heavenly Father will remember if i read the scriptures to them and taught them His laws. And i will remember if i did what i could to the best of my ability, to raise them to love and serve the Lord.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Seasons of Marraige

I got this article about the seasons of marriage and I thought it was so great! I just had to post it here. I am going to read it with James tonight. As General Conference for our church is this weekend were we are able to listen to the Prophet of our church and our apostles and hear the words of the Lord through them, I found this especially fitting as we begin again this beautiful spring season to try and be better and live the commandments more fully and listen to the council of the Lord. Because I can now begin again with my marriage to make it better and try to be a better mother and wife, companion and help meet to my husband.

Seasons of Marriage by Dr. Elia GourgourisNature has her seasons—summer, fall, winter, spring—but so does each marriage. How do we make it through each—and love it? The following are suggestions on how to thrive, not just survive.
What is it that separates successful couples from those that chronically struggle in their marriage? One of the critical differences I've observed over the last twenty years as a marriage counselor and coach is their ability to navigate through the different "marriage seasons."
These seasonal ups and downs can occur during any phase of marriage, the first of which is the newlywed phase, where couples first establish their priorities and learn to share their lives together. That phase is followed by the "having children" phase, and then the "raising a family" phase, which is usually the most demanding, stressful, and "endure-to-the-end" sort of phase. After all those years, couples finally enter the last phase, called the "empty nester," and they are fully engaged in helping out with the grandkids and enjoying a second honeymoon.
Let's back up for a moment though and talk about a basic tenant of all marriages. Every relationship has its very own checking account. Every day, we go to "work" to earn a paycheck, which we deposit into this "account." At the same time we may find ourselves making withdrawals from the marriage account for a variety of reasons. The health of our marital checkbook will depend on the difference between these deposits and withdrawals.
Before we get married, the deposits are plentiful and the withdrawals few—usually making our bank account full. We accomplish that by opening doors and being polite, staying up to talk until the wee hours of the morning, and even more impressively, listening attentively to every word. And when the day is done, we can't wait to reunite so we can do it all over again. The deposits are plentiful, so we proceed to make the most important decision of our lives: to spend our lives - and usually all eternity - together.
Unfortunately, as confirmed by thousands of couples I've interviewed, something happens soon after the honeymoon ends. Sometimes it begins slowly. Other times it's surprising and abrupt. We begin to hear things like, "He/she changed after we got married," or, "We started drifting apart." If those sound familiar to you, well, there's a very logical explanation.
Typically, withdrawals start to increase and deposits start to decrease. It doesn't necessarily happen overnight. It is, however, a steady and progressive depletion of the bank account. Eventually, but not surprisingly, we find ourselves and our marriage living paycheck to emotional paycheck.
The solution to this unfortunate turnaround is the concept of D.T.E. - Define the Expectations. In all relationships, expectations are the key to success or failure.
Clearly communicated, understood, and agreed-upon expectations always lead to deposits; lack of clarity, miscommunication, or disagreements over expectations most likely result in withdrawals. We will be looking at three areas where there is great need for clear expectations during each season: emotional intimacy, spiritual intimacy, and physical intimacy.
Summer love is bliss, and newlyweds shower each other with deposits. But surprisingly, in the first six months of my own marriage, my wife and I both felt like we weren't getting our needs met. How was that possible when we both felt like we were working so hard on our marriage? So much love, hope, and optimism about our eternal union, and yet we were not fully connecting. It was puzzling. Fortunately, we were able to set aside our hurt feelings and sit down and very openly and honestly discuss our differences. We had to learn to identify our love languages.
We quickly learned that we were both giving what we hoped the other person would give back in return. My love language was physical touch; different from sexual touch, I felt love through holding hands, hugs and kisses, and back and feet rubs. I used this language to show love to my wife - for the first six months of our marriage, I hugged and kissed her to death. But that's not how she felt love. She felt love through words of affirmation. And she showed it this way; I had never been thanked so many times about everything I did.
After we identified these differences came the hard part. The key to success is to love your spouse the way he or she needs to feel loved, not what comes easily or naturally to you. It's in the getting outside of our comfort zone and "stretching" that true love and service can be found.
The change to our marriage took place the night after we spoke, when she cooked a delicious dinner. I thanked her and complimented her on her cooking. The results were almost magical: she started hugging and kissing me, and I've been saying "thank you" ever since!
The most common five love languages - according to The Five Love Languages author Dr. Gary Chapman - are acts of service, physical touch, words of affirmation, gifts, and quality time. It is vitally important to take the time to ask specifically what things make one another feel the most loved . . . and then become willing to show your love in that manner, even if it doesn't come easily. Note that as time and circumstances change, so do our love languages. It is important to re-check with each other every few years to make sure that we are still putting deposits in the right account!
Defining spiritual expectations plays a vital role in establishing a spiritual home. One of the best habits to establish early on is reading the scriptures together and saying couple prayers. If this is not established during this phase, I can promise you that when the next phase comes around, it will be missing in action.
Physical intimacy can be one of the most powerful and beautiful ways of communicating love to one another. Tenderness and consideration for each others’ feelings is of utmost importance. Conversely, lack of these qualities can very easily empty the account. Communicating expectations and desires is a critical factor in ensuring that falling in love goes far beyond the initial physical attraction. It encompasses a deep and profound emotional and spiritual connection, an attractiveness of the mind, heart, and spirit - a friendship that will endure well in the decades ahead.
The fall intimacy season usually arrives with the welcome news of, "Honey, guess what- I'm pregnant." Though that's said in jest, it is true. Fall can be a great season as we prepare for the arrival of our first child and transition from being a couple to a family. As for emotional intimacy, this is perhaps the greatest time to bond. Once again, we need to redefine our expectations as our emotional intimacy enters a new phase. Husbands have a tremendous opportunity to exceed expectations by extending themselves in service. Helping out at home, as well as being more patient, will go a long way toward maintaining our connection. If ever there was a time for us to activate our "sensitivity gene," this is the time! And for the wife, the attention naturally shifts more toward her, so she should make sure that her husband doesn't feel left out.
Make Friday or Saturday night a date night. My wife and I made this a priority early on, and I can honestly say that we have kept up on our date nights quite consistently. Over the years, social activities, travel, illness, or other unforeseen events have kept us from dating every single week. It's interesting to notice, however, that if we miss more than two weeks in a row, we both start to feel somewhat disconnected.
Physical intimacy naturally changes when a couple is expecting their first child. The priority shifts from "the two of us" to "starting a family." During this time it is very important to maintain a physical connection, even if frequency is not as regular. It is paramount that the husband continues to compliment his wife as her body changes. This is likely the first time she's undergoing so many dramatic changes with hormones and body image, etc., and her self-esteem can dip dramatically.
Now we have what is called the "winter of our discontent" in terms of relationships. It could be because the exhausted and overwhelmed couple is now expecting another child, and the others are all under age six, or because they have drifted apart over the years. Whatever the reason, it does not mean they have to stay disconnected forever. If there are unresolved issues that have gotten in the way of intimacy, they need to be addressed and resolved. Often resolving this discontent takes a concerted effort to reconnect emotionally with one another. Spending quality time together is no longer just a suggestion - it's a necessity.
Here are some suggestions: Even though both parties are exhausted at the end of the day, have a fifteen-minute minute pillow talk and catch up. Go for a walk around the block while pushing the stroller - talking (and more importantly listening) to each other will bring great rewards. I again highly encourage that when we feel disconnected, we re-examine each other's love languages. Remember that over time we all change. Perhaps the husband has been traveling recently and craves quality time with his wife. In years past, quality time was third or fourth on his list, but with the change in circumstances, his needs have shifted. Without an honest discussion, that need could easily fall through the cracks.
I also extend a word of caution in the area of spiritual intimacy during this season. Through my personal and professional experience, I have come to the following conclusion: couple scripture study and prayers are almost nonexistent. Most of us say our family and personal prayers and read scriptures with our kids, but by the time the last kid is in bed, we're too tired to pray together. At no other time in our marriage is it more important to connect spiritually with one another and ask for divine assistance for our marriage, our children, and ourselves. This is the time we need most to be going on weekly dates and yes, going to the temple counts as a date!
Just as nature renews itself, so can marriages. Rest assured - even after the fiercest winter, spring will come. The pregnancy phase eventually stops. Kids grow up and become more independent. Stress and time demands usually diminish. This is the time to cash in on the years of effort you've put into your marriage, working through issues and sacrificing for one another. This season is the reward.
I know of so many couples who are now in their 50s and 60s who are enjoying a renewal in their relationship. For some it's even better than seasons enjoyed before. These couples have grown closer together over the years, matured, endured life's difficulties, and they have improved their emotional and spiritual intimacy. Physical closeness is now the icing on the cake for enduring so well. Finally they have the opportunity to experience the warmth and renewal of life, hope, and love that surely comes with the spring.

________Dr. Elia Gourgouris is a nationally known speaker and marriage expert and the author of The Multi-Platinum Marriage: Going from Just Surviving to Thriving! With over twenty years of experience, he coaches LDS couples throughout the United States and enjoys speaking at BYU Education Week and Time Out for Women. He and his wife, Sona, live near Boulder, Colorado, with their children. You can reach Dr. Gourgouris at or

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sprouted Wheat Update

So a couple of days ago i shared my bread recipe. I would like to at this point say yes, the cup of water definitely can be cut down to about 1/4 a cup. If you don't want to cut it down so much for fear of it being too dry, then when you are finished letting it rise, about 2 hours to double, then liberally apply bread flour to the counter when you are going to shape it, you will need the extra flour to work into the dough. Then you are going to want to let it rise again in the pans for about 30 minutes before cooking at 350 for about 50 minutes or so. I like the bread. It is much lighter than the regular wheat bread i have been making. It could use some salt though, maybe a couple of teaspoons worth. Be careful though since the salt kills the yeast, so make sure to add it after you have added your flour, while it is mixing.
Happy Baking :)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Sprouted Whole Wheat!

OK! So, i have been trying to lose weight for about 3 months now. And i have lost about 10 lbs. not so great, considering i keep fluctuating up 2 lbs and back down 2 lbs. So this week i am up the 2 lbs and maybe next week i will be down the 2 lbs. I can't seem to break through the barrier. I have never been able to lose weight before when I am nursing, so the fact that i lost 10 lbs is a huge feat for me! I should be so pleased, i know, but i am not. All i can see is the 35 lbs i still need to lose and that i am not getting any closer to my goal and i am very discouraged!
So what does that have to do with Sprouted wheat you ask? Well in an effort to become more healthy and to live a Heather life, i decided to try and eat more naturally. And in doing so I came upon a blog that was totally cool. It talked about eating More "whole foods" not processed prepackaged foods. And how making things from scratch was better for you. So i thought, yeah that makes total sense! So about 2 months ago i started making soup stock and soups from scratch. Then i got a Bosch mixer and started making breads from scratch. And i have been playing with the bread recipes a bit, since they are VERY dense and use bread flour as well as wheat flour.
Then i kept hearing about this book called "Nourishing Traditions" by Sally Fallon. And how she talks about Lacto fermented foods and how eating More naturally is so much better for you. She even talks about how pure saturated fats, from grass fed animal sources is really healthy for you. It is an excellent read and i would recommend it to anyone! She also talks about sprouting your grains and beans before you eat them. How soaking them gets rid of the acids that are in the grains preventing them from allowing the nutrients in the grains to truly be accessed. So i decided to soak my wheat for 24 hours and then to make bread from it. IT sounded like an easy plausible idea, but when i went to grind the wheat, i found it didn't grind so well because it was so wet and squishy. I also realized that the recipe called for 1 cup of water, which was fine before. But when the grains were already soaked and full of water, it was too much water for the bread and it looked like soup. So i had to modify the recipe and add a bit more of the dry ingredients to get the dough to form a bit better. So here is the recipe i used.

4 cups soaked and drained wheat grains sprouted
1 cup bread flour
1 1/2 cups oats
1 tsp yeast
1 cup warm water
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup of butter

I will try and see if this turns out OK, if it doesn't i will start again and omit the cup of water and instead do 1/4 a cup of water for the yeast to rise in.

I also decided to use my soaked wheat to make pancakes. These turned out a bit mushy in the middle, but they were still good.

3 cups of soaked wheat with a bit of the water still in the cup
1 tsp. baking soda
3 ripe bananas
1 tbsp vanilla extract

Then i cooked them up and the girls put cinnamon sugar on them. They were super yummy and very filling.
So i feel like i am on my way to making better healthier meals for my family. As soon as i get some raw yogurt I am going to start making my own Youghart and Keifer and doing more lacto fermented vegetables and fruit! Now i am off to make some homemade jam :)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A New Blog!

I found this new blog in one of the newsletters I receive. And I LOVE IT!! It had a great article about the healing powers of the Lord. Not just in physical ways, but also in emotional and how we see ourselves and in every aspect of our lives. The article I am referring to is Called "So Pretty" By Merrilee Browne Boyack
February 02, 2009
Over the years, I have sung that song from “West Side Story”—“I feel pretty, oh so pretty!” and have laughed. I felt anything BUT pretty. I have spent my entire lifetime feeling unattractive.
To be truthful, I was somewhat taught that I was not pretty. I could share a litany of comments from various people in my life: “You’ll never be beautiful so work on your personality.” “Your friend is pretty and you are smart. That’s just the way it is.” And one of my personal favorites when I was considering serving a mission as a young adult: “You’re not ugly enough to go on a mission.” Ugly? Enough? Uh, OK . . . . .
So you can imagine how I felt when I was diagnosed with breast cancer and told that I had to have a mastectomy. You’ve GOT to be kidding me. Wasn’t I ugly enough? The thought of losing my hair, which I felt was my one saving grace, hit me. I shall never forget the day when I was on my prayer/walk and I realized that by the end of the month I would be bald. Bald. Ugly. Could I survive all this emotionally?
On that day I prayed to Heavenly Father and asked for a gift. I asked for the gift of healing of my feelings about my appearance. Now don’t worry, I’d been praying for complete healing for a while. But I knew this was not something I could survive very well emotionally on my own. And I was tired of feeling ugly for 50 years of my life. I wanted healing. And I knew the only way to get it was to get it from God. So I asked.
Now a strange thing began to happen. Day after day I felt prettier. I know that is very strange and hard to explain. It just did. I began to notice things about myself that I liked and were attractive.
And then came the day to face the mirror after my surgery. The bandages were off. And you know what, it was OK. It was different, but it was OK. I knew that I would have reconstruction eventually and it was fine. And look at my wonderful body! It was a miracle!
Next came the day when my hair was going. It was really falling out and I called my son and asked if he would come buzz it off. Sweet Brennan came home on his lunch hour. I buzzed his hair, and then he buzzed mine. As he was buzzing it, he commented, “It’s not every day you get to buzz off your mother’s hair!” All too true. When it was done, we took pictures and he said I now looked like one of the Boyack brothers (we have four sons who have had many “buzzes” in their lifetimes). I then went in the shower and shaved it all off to the skin.
And then came the time to face the mirror. And an amazing thing happened. I looked in that mirror and saw beauty. My eyes that I had always hated were shining. My skin was glowing. I had a good head! And a big smile. I realized that I was truly beautiful. Positively gorgeous.
I told my husband that I have felt more beautiful in the last two months than I have ever felt in my life. He laughed and said it must have been the hair!
But I know that something deeper has happened. God has healed my feelings about my appearance. I have finally been able to see myself as He sees me—a marvelous work of art. And the voices that I have carried in my head for decades have been completely silenced. It was a gift from Him –pure and simple.
I have learned a deep lesson. God creates beauty. It is that simple. And when He created me, He created a lovely, pretty, down-right-CUTE daughter. I have also realized that every single one of us is beautiful. Yeah, yeah, we have inner beauty. But I have discovered that every single one of us in all our shapes and sizes and ages and conditions, are truly beautiful on the outside. That was something I had not understood until now.
God creates beauty. God created me. And He did a good job.

I thought that this was such a beautiful story! I know that through my life I have felt unattractive in the same way. I beat myself up for it everyday. My weight that i gain when i get pregnant. I have a hard time seeing past it. But this really hit a cord with me, that it doesn't matter. God created me the way He wanted me, not the way I wanted me. And I need to be happy with the way I am. Now I do still believe I need to treat the Temple He has given me as Holy and take better care of myself. But it doesn't matter that I am not a size 6. I am the way He wants me. There were so many great stories and devotionals on this blog! I just had to share it!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

My Photography!

I have been working very hard the last few weeks to learn how to use my camera better. I have been reading and reading, but more importantly i have been practising and practising. So I took my kids out and started practising with them. Dolling them all up and taking a million and a half pictures!

These are of my Angels!


I Don't know about that Mommy!

My Angel!

My little Funny Face!

My little Chubby Cheeks!

My World!

My relaxed Diva!

I love this one, it truly captures her radiant spirit.

I love this one too! The softness of her face, with a touch of mystery! LOL!

Sweet Smile!

Cutie Rosie!

So Shy!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Brit's Party

So Brit turned 9 this week. Yes my baby! My first born is almost a decade old! I am dying inside, where did the time go? How can she possibly be this old? But she is so beautiful and talented and I am so proud to be her mama!

We had a totally fun spa party for her, with lots of good fun and good friends! It was our first all girl party. Nail done, lip balm making, bath salts. Lots of fresh spa foods and lots of fun! The girls all had tons of fun!

And our friend Mary had tons of fun holding Christian!
And he seems to love being held!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

25 Weird things about me

Ok, so a friend of mine sent me this on facebook and I did it too, so i thought i would post it here :)
Rules: Once you've been tagged, write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it's because I want to know more about you.
(To do this, go to “notes” under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people (in the right hand corner of the app) then click publish.)
1. ok lets start off easy... my favorite color is red. But not a orangy red or a pinky red a real true red. I also love black.
2. I love Jack Skellington from Nightmare Before Christmas, as well as Nightmare before Christmas. I am pretty much obsessed with all of it!
3. I love pirates! Don't know why because the real pirates are REALLY nothing to mess with, but Jack Sparrow makes it look so fun, LOL!
4. I love Vampires. And I loved them even before Twilight! Loved that too, but really have been obsessed with vampires.
5. Love Harry Potter book, and I am doing Hogwarts Homeschooling with my girls, too fun!
6. I love sci-fi and role playing gaming.
7. I love computer games, video games and World of WarCraft.
8. I love to read self help books and informational books. And i get millions of books, then read about 100 pages of each and put them down and pick up something new.
9. I want to have a self sufficient lifestyle and live on a farm and have chickens, and goats and alpaca, and bees and a huge garden and fruits and everything i would need to survive if the world ended.
10. I love to sew and make things, but i never have made things for myself.
11. I am terrified of drowning or being eaten by a shark. I don't know why, but I am so scared to go into deep water for fear of being eaten by a shark or drowning. Though i know how to swim.
12. I don't like chocolate. It is true. I don't like chocolate ice cream, pudding, milk, cake. I will occasionally eat chocolate with or flavored things. But on a whole I don't like it.
13. I love camels and toffees. Butterscotch is good too.
14. I wanted all 3 of my girls to be a boy, and then when i got pregnant with my fourth i prayed for another girl! ROFL!!!
15. I lettered in high school in Theater and went to college on a theater scholarship.
16. I can't dance, I am more coordinated now than i ever was as a kid, but i cant dance worth beans.
17. I have bad handwriting and can't draw anything more than stick figures. And even those are questionable.
18. My husband and I were engaged after our first date. And married 3 months later.
19. I always feel bad when I go out with people or go to their house, because I always talk too much. And never realize it till i am gone.
20. I used to own a lingerie business. It was lots of fun, and very... enlightening. LOL!
21. I started home schooling my girls this year and i think i am learning as much as they are.
22. Being a mother is the most rewarding thing I have ever done and is the greatest joy and sense of accomplishment in my life.
23. My husband is my best friend and my favorite person and I couldn't live without him.
24. Due to my mom being a Jewish convert to Christianity, and her family all being Jewish, we observe some of the Jewish holidays.
25. The more kids i have, the more i want :)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Angel Style!

Ok! So! Angel dressed herself the other day. Which isn't a new thing! She does it everyday. Every day is a new adventure to see what it is that she will wear. She loves it and insists on doing it herself, most of the time. Sometime she will ask for my help, I will pick something out, and she will look at it and say, (every time) "But it isn't blue mommy. My favorite color is blue". LOL!

So anyway, the other day Angel dressed herself as usual. But when I looked at her, I thought to myself, you know, she looks like the epitome of me right now! And the epitome of Bakersfield! For those of you that don't know we lived in a tiny town of 800 people in Star Idaho before moving back to California. And James is from Orange County, and I was born in Los Angeles. I consider Bakersfield to be the in between of Star and Los Angeles. Star was a small farming town with lots of families and a close knit community atmosphere. Los Angeles...well... I don't think i need to explain living there!

So this is what i find her wearing:

Lets start at the bottom and work our way up!

1. Cowgirl boots. Pink cowgirl boots. I loved the statement these made. A bit funky and a whole lot of country. These reminded me of me because we are trying really hard right now to get back to basics and simplify our lives. We are starting a large garden, we are trying to have chickens and bees and do some farming stuff.

2. The yoga pants. Those reminded me of my crunchy side, as my friend Amanda calls it! LOL! The side of me that wants to eat better and not eat processed foods. Eat organic and healthier. That i do attachment parenting with my kids and home school them. That i am starting to make homemade foods to eat more and more instead of store bought. That I am learning to knit and sew and do more. And yes i do need to start doing yoga! I really think it would help with my sleeping better...oh wait, you have to have a baby that sleeps through the night to get that!

3. The fleece polar top. Ok so this is her preppy side! Her upper class, want to make something of myself and succeed in life self. Her urban preppy life! LOL!

4. Last but not least, her hat and bow! Her, ultra chic boutique look! Representing all her cuteness and girlieness. And representing all of my creativity and sewing outlet. My love of all things girlie (now, never used to be that way). My love of fabrics and textiles, of creating and making. Of color and artistry and imagination and fantasy.

Ok, now i know that you might all think that i am stretching it a bit, but when i looked at her dressed this way, this is how i felt and what i thought of. And i thought of how much, one simple little outfit, put on by a 3 year old, represented who i was and what was going on in my life. It was like the quote that Heath Ledger, the late actor, said "You learn most about yourself, through your child. And it is so true.

I am blessed everyday by my children and the things that they teach me and the way that i grow from knowing them and being their mother.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

New Years Resolutions! Uh... Yearly goals!

As i have had time to reflect on the past year we have had a lot of good things come to our family as well as several challenges. First good thing from this last year is the addition of our beautiful son Christian James to our family. The second wonderful thing to happen was that Brittany was baptized into the church. Another wonderful thing that we had happen was Angel potty trained! WooHoo!
A few of the challenges that we faced were, James becoming very sick for quite a long time and being in and out of the hospital for months. But the blessing was they found out what was wrong and he is now feeling much better.
Another challenge that we have faced is that James lost his job. However, we are praying that the new year will bring him much success in this area.
We also faced the challenge of having to once again change schools. As the private school the girls were in was totally inadequate. However the blessing was that we found a wonderful charter school for them to go to that i am able to home school them through.
Another great blessing was that the school has provided us with many new friends. And it helped us to find the homeschooling yahoo group that we now belong to and have many new friends through as well.
This last year has truly brought many welcomed blessings into our lives and helped us to realize what is important.
So i have found that when i say i have New Years Resolutions, i never do them. So i am now having yearly goals. I have so many of them that i decided that i would write them all down. but more than that i decided that if i am going to try and accomplish them that i need to work on them and look at them daily. So i took my list of yearly goals and i added them to my outlook. It pops up every morning as a task that i need to do. Since i am at my computer so much during the day anyway, i thought this would be a good way to remind me of the things that i want to accomplish for the year.
Well my goals have started off much like they have in years past. But i have a few new ones that i am going to be working on as well. i accomplished a few of my goals last year. Not as many as i would have liked to, but more than i did the year before so i feel like i am getting better and growing :)
So here are some of my goals for this year:

1) To come closer to the Lord through daily scripture study, prayer and church attendance. Church attendance is the hardest one for me. I have adult ADD and sitting for 3 hours is torture. It is so hard for me, but it is my goal to be a weekly church attender. i know that if i want my children to grow up and be active in the church and be weekly church attenders, that i need to set the example for them. I also need to go to my church activities and do my Vi sting Teaching monthly.

2) To lose 40 lbs. Ok, so i have already started working on this. I joined weight watchers and i have been doing pretty well at it so far. I gave up over Christmas,because i was at my moms, and that was just a major no go! But have been doing well the last 2 weeks. It is hard though because i am still nursing and i have never been able to lose weight while nursing. It is hard also because my weight varies so much on the scale due to the nursing.
I found this great article and i think it has some wonderful information on what not to eat. The first one is my biggest downfall, i love fried foods! Btu i am going to try to be better this year!

3) To have a closer and more loving relationship with my Husband and children. I know that in the business of homeschooling, gymnastics, park day, house cleaning, nursing, sewing, church activities, friends and everything else we have going on, sometimes the hugs, the snuggles, the quiet times and the i love yous get left out. it is my goal to daily try to improve my relationships with my family. More hugs and kisses, I love yous and i appreciate yous. As well as Family Home Evening weekly, daily scripture study and prayers.

4) Downsize and simplify. I soooooo need to downsize and simplify my life. I have been consumed with material possessions for too long. The constant buying buying buying got way to far out of control last year. Mostly form having my own wholesale fabric group, where i bought every fabric under the sun. So this year I am downsizing and simplifying everything i have. it is my goal to go through all my stuff and to get rid of all the junk that has been sitting around my house taking up room, that i don't really want or need. And to donate it to charity, or people who need it.

5) To do my family history work. I need to do my family history this year. it is no longer acceptable for me to say, I'll get to it. I need to do it, and i need to do it now!

6) I want to improve my skills in certain areas. i want to improve my knowledge of my camera and photography and how to take better pictures. I want to improve my cooking skills. i want to be able to cook, good wholesome fresh foods for my family, not just easy and convenient junk that has little nutritional value. I want to improve my sewing skills more. By leering how to do pockets and zippers and other things to be able to enhance my garments even further.

Well, that certainly isnt all but that is all but those are the most important ones that iw ould like to accomlish this year.
So Happy New Years everyone! And pray fro my success as i pray for yours!