Thursday, May 31, 2012

David is 3

Was it really three years ago this little piece of heaven entered this earth? David, you have the most tender heart. I am glad you have a sweet sister on each side of you. We are so grateful you are in our family. Daddy and I were overcome the day we found out we would be having a son (Daddy had a hard time believing it was true until he officially met you). You give our family a whole new dimension. We love you, we love you, we love you! We hope your birthday will be filled with happiness. You are our Mr. Sun, Handsome Jack and Boy. Happy Birthday David!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

You never lose a day of sobriety

Today the forum at BYU was given by Dr. Melissa Heath, a colleague and friend of mine. She said many great things, but something that really stood out to me was when she was talking about the 12 step program that The Church does. She shared how something stressed in the program is that you need to remember, " You do not lose days of sobriety-you always keep those." She mentioned that even when we mess up and get off track, it is ok. We can always go back and the days we have of sobriety are banked. They do NOT go away. She said that Satan would have us believe once we've gone off track that we're hopeless, but this is not what God would have us believe. With God, there is always hope.

Her words really struck me as I likened them to my efforts as a mother.  I really know the type of mother I want to be. I really know the ways I want to discipline my children. I really know how much time I want to spend with my children. I really have this very clear ideal of who I should be as a mother.  And yet . . . I fail at it every day!!!

Still each time I fail, there is hope. I can get back up and choose to use my failures as teaching moments as I try to become more like God. And every moment when I have been that mother I know I want to be; it's all still there! You never lose a sober day. Every sweet moment and memory with my children has been banked and even when I mess up-those sweet times still exist. 

I think I am too quick when I make a mistake to feel like I will never get this whole mothering thing down. I know what I should do and yet I still don't always do it. And you know what, that is fine. This is how we were meant to learn. Only one person was sent to this earth to be perfect and it certainly was not me. 

So I am grateful for this reminder. I am grateful to remember that when I make a mistake, I am allowed the permission to get back on track. I am grateful that when I get back on that track, all of those precious memories are still right there waiting for me. I am grateful that forgiveness is real and that my efforts are known.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Our little dancing munchkin

Lucy was a Munchkin this year in her dance studio's production of The Wizard of Oz.

She was absolutely beautiful! I teared up watching her smile as she danced on the stage. She is so happy up there.
The first night, I volunteered to be a "Mom helper" back stage. It was a beautiful milestone in my life and I loved it.

Our little dancer! She loved watching Dorothy and she was amazing on her free dance.

Look at this lovely lady. Her pointed toe is my favorite part of all.

She kept asking, "Is today the day I get to dance on the stage?" This girl is a performer!

Such happy parents with one tired little munchkin.

Walker girl

Vivian's current favorite pass time is to walk holding any piece of furniture, wall or door that she can get her hands on. She cracks me up to leave a room and find her in a completely different area when I get back. She is very skillful with her new found talent of walking.
Marc calls this her "Book 'em Dano" pose.

1st time in a swimsuit

Isn't she darling!

Solar Eclipse

Marc was bathing the kids and I ran in and handed him the special solar glasses and told him to go see how cool the eclipse was. Do you love this photo? Please note Vivian's bow in his hair that he took out to give her a bath. ;)

The eclipse from our camera looking through the solar glasses.

Vivi checking out the welding glasses.

David and his little buddy thought the welding glasses were awesome. Not sure they ever looked at the eclipse with them though?

Monday, May 21, 2012

Vivian is ONE

This little angel turned one on May 20th and boy were we ready to celebrate!

We made cupcakes, cookies and cake.

I loved how the cupcakes turned out with a 1 sugar cookie in each. Thanks for the idea, Jen.

The cookies were delicious and I loved seeing her beautiful name on the platter.

This cake resembled a pink Jabba the Hut cake at first, but with some encouragement from Marc, I persevered and made it look a bit more presentable.

We played a game where each person put their name in a cup for what they thought Vivian would do when she grew up, later she chose an item that went with the field . . .

Our beautiful birthday girl. Is she really one???

Vivian Rose, we love you to pieces.

Uncle Kevin stopped by to wish her a happy birthday.

So did Aunt Jennifer. Such a loved little girl.

David loved "helping" her open her presents.

Choosing her future career: the keys were for public service, the book for education, ballet shoe for the arts, stethoscope for medical and rake for industrial. She chose the keys so we drew a name from the Public Service cup and Uncle Kevin was the big winner!

The traditional eating of the cake on your first birthday . . .

Tastes pretty good. Again, David is "helping".

I think we should have Mom do this every day . . .

Lucy is going to "help" too. Such great siblings Vivian has.

Mom & Dad with their baby girl.

Grandma & Grandpa with their baby's baby. 

Lucy's preschool graduation

When I first started talking to the moms in my neighborhood about a co-op preschool we were hoping to get about five kids in our group. There ended up being twelve kids and we had to split the group between two homes each week. It was incredible.

So incredible that we needed to celebrate with a graduation. The evening was nothing short of magical as all of these families gathered in our backyard to celebrate these sweet children. I love being a Mom. I love teaching my children. And I love that we are raising our family in an amazing village filled with so many wonderful people.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day 2012

I am one lucky Mommy.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

My dreams have come true

See this adorable little lady who likes to dress herself in clashing colors with pink cowboy boots and lovely uncombed long hair. She is my sweet little helper who jumps to make every ones' life happier in our home. She loves to dance and sing (often at the same time). And she points out pink flowers and ribbons whenever she sees them. I dreamed of being her mother.

And this little man with his green rain boots that he insists on wearing and I have to bribe him to take them off at bed time. He loves to check out trash cans and to play with toy cars and trains. Getting dirty doesn't phase him a bit and playing in the water is his number one pass time. I could not have imagined a boy more perfect than him.

And this darling baby that giggles and shakes her arms and legs the moment she sees me. Her laughs and smiles brighten every piece of my being. She thinks her brother & sister are the coolest things ever and she says about 15 words, two of which are "Amen" and "shoes" (I must be training her right). She is a dream. Together these three have made so many of my dreams come true.  

Sunday, May 6, 2012

What I wish I would have known . . .

I found it very enlightening to realize how much more peaceful I was as a mother with my third baby than I was with my first. I feel like I have learned a lot and for what it's worth, I'd like to share some of what I now know and what I wish I would have been willing to listen to and implement prior to baby number one.

I might also add I think much of motherhood comes from experiencing it so I doubt I would have listened to much of this advice prior to having Lucy, but I somehow wish I could have convinced the new mother in me to understand what I now do.

  • YOU are your baby's Mother. There are many "styles" and "methods" and people willing to give advice. And in the end, you will be the one who must deal with the consequences of the methods you choose to prescribe to. Some women would prefer the attached style while others are nazi about following a strict schedule. I find that not one style is better than another, but perhaps some are better fitted for the personality of the mother. Choose to be the mother that best fits you and your baby. In the end, I find myself being a mixture of several methods and what matters most to me is not what everyone else thinks, but what works best for me and my baby. May I add, you will probably be most happy if you choose to support the other mothers around you in the decisions they feel are best.
  • Breastfeeding is WORK! I nursed all three of my babies and it was not until my third that I finally "got it down". And you know how it worked? I took supplements (fenugreek) and I pumped for 20 minutes after EVERY feeding for the first three weeks of my baby's life. That's right, I would feed my baby and then I would sit with a little machine and pump for another 20 minutes-even in the middle of the night! It was hard, but I felt like it was very worth it and I knew from my previous two babies, I didn't naturally just make a lot of milk so I was willing to do what I needed to in order to get enough milk. 
  • With this said, I have had to supplement all three babies with formula because I just don't seem to make enough milk to keep them satisfied. My last baby has required the least supplement by far, but she still seems to need some. And you know what? It is totally FINE! If my babies get formula, they are going to be alright. I think often people feel like you either breastfeed or you do bottles. For me, I was able to find a nice balance of both and it has worked out great. 
  • I am a HUGE fan of sleep training your baby. It is wonderful to have your baby on a schedule. AND (going back to my first point) this fits my personality well-I am a very organized/structured person. With this said, I learned with my third that if I just wanted to hold her or nurse her to sleep, that was fine too. She is almost one and I just nursed her to sleep tonight and earlier today, I laid her down for her nap and she cried for five minutes and was out. You know what rules I follow? I follow the rules of my heart and I do what feels right for my baby in the moment I am in.
  • I have learned that one of the most beautiful things I can do with my time is to hold my babies. I hold them as long as I can-until my body aches. I soak up these moments. Because I have come to understand it is a very short, sacred season of time you have where your babies want to be held by you like they do when they are so little.
  • I have thrown out developmental charts and focused more on embracing beautiful moments with my baby. I don't stress over when she is sitting, what she is saying and so forth as it compares to a chart. Instead, I watch her pull herself up and I smile. Then I try hard to embed the moment into my soul. This approach has made me a much more satisfied mother. 
  • The advice my own mother, mother-in law and Grandma give me is worth far more than any book I could ever read. I wish I would have understood this with my first baby. 
  • I could probably sum this all up by saying, with my third baby I have learned to be confident in the mother I am. I have come to trust that what I feel in my heart holds the greatest value for me and my babies.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Stander Baby

This little lady loves to stand. Often if she is fussy, all it takes is to prop her up against something and she loves to be standing.

Her absolute favorite place to stand is against David's bed. She always loves to watch what David is doing.

And I love to see when these sweet little moments happen. I hope Vivian will always adore her big brother.

And I caught this little gem of a moment the other morning. Lucy was reading, Vivian was standing and David was pointing out the colors to Vivian. My heart melted. These three make my life so complete. Watching them grow is one of the greatest treasures I have ever been given.