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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Callings & California

Its been a crazy few weeks. We have been able to spend a lot of time as a little family, and that has been my absolute favorite part. It makes everything we do worth it when we can sit back and see how we are blessed as a family, not just individually. I was released as the nursery leader recently. And I kind of don't know what to do with myself. This is the first time I have been released without an immediate call to something else. And I am starting to feel lost, with no purpose week after week as I go to church with no calling. Ok, so its only been like 3 weeks, but that is a lifetime for me. (I might look back at this post in a couple months & regret thinking all of this, depending on what I am asked to do). Our Bishop told me, when he told me to anticipate a release, that there were a few things that were being put in motion & I might have an opportunity to work with the youth again. I was elated. I love working with the youth! They bring a light to my life that no other group can. They test my patience a lot of the time too, but seeing them at such an important phase in their lives, where they really find themselves & decide who they are going to be & what they are going to do is amazing. And being able to witness it & sometimes be a part of it is one of the most rewarding things. I beam with pride when I see the young women & young men I have been able to teach when I see who they have become and some of the choices they have made. Anyway, I hope that might turns into a definite yes! Ezra has really started to thrive without me in nursery. He has been singing, which he would never do when I was in there. And he is more friendly with the other kids. I have been able to supplement him when we are home, which is nice. He has learned so many songs in the last few weeks. We sing 4 or 5 before bed every night after we read his illustrated scriptures & I feel like we both do better when I am not the only one teaching him both at home & in nursery. He is able to get different things from different people, which is so good! And I am sure other people can teach him so many more things than I can. Plus, the poor kid needs some space & time away from his crazy mama. Well if he needed space, he is going to get a lot of it this weekend. Cody is sending me to CA to spend time with my sisters. I leave on Thursday, we are doing an all girls trip to Disneyland Friday, and then we can go to surf competitions, the beach or shopping on Saturday. I fly home later on Sunday afternoon. The whole thing has given me a little anxiety. I hate leaving Ezra at all, but leaving my baby in another state?!?!? That just seems crazy to me. It helps that he will be with his daddy :) And not having both of us gone. We have only both left once, and that was for Quest. I figured because we were only an hour away & because it was for a church calling, he would have extra protection & so would we, weird? I don't care. Otherwise it freaks me the heck out. I am one of those moms. Make fun of me, I don't care. Anyway. I am trying to be a lot better about posting. So lets see how long I can keep this thing up. Until next time.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Thoughts

I don't know about you, but a lot of the time when my house gets messy & I don't want to clean it, I get the itch to move. "Maybe if I had more space, I would have more places to put things, and then my house would be cleaner."-that kind of thing. And Pinterest has made this even worse for me! However I realized...I would have to clean that one too. I would have to vacuum & mop even more floors, I would have to straighten more rooms, I would have to pick up Ezra's toys in more spread-out areas. And boy does that not sound appealing. Especially when you consider how tough it is sometimes to get yourself to scrub the bathrooms you already have, to dust all the ceiling fans, patch the paint on the walls, clean the ample spaced kitchen you already have...and then add to it! Whoa. I am very grateful for the house we have & the home we have created inside of it. Is it perfect? No. Will anything ever be? Not a chance! So every time I mop or vacuum I am reminded that I am very grateful that its just these floors & not more! And that is the problem I think with the world today. (And sometimes it creeps into my head, because believe it or not, I am not perfect either. SHOCKER!) We aren't grateful enough for the things we already have & we think that having more might change that. Guess what? It might for a minute, but in the long run its not that kind of thing that makes anyone happy. I am grateful for my little family, would we like to add to it? Of course. But are we happy with the way it is now too? Absolutely. We are grateful for the place in which we live because of the people around us. Is it my ideal home? Not by a long shot! But am I grateful to live in a place where I have people who love me & where I have some support (even though it snows here?) Heavens yes! There are always going to be things in life that you wish were different, that is one thing that will never change. But what we can change is our attitude. Be grateful! I know I could always use some more gratitude in my life.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Starting Over

Its been a long time. I have loved just being with Ezra, playing all day, teaching him things & just watching him grow into his own little person. He is gotten to the point that he likes to help me clean. He loves to swiffer the kitchen floor, sweep, help vacuum, grab disinfecting wipes & wipe down anything within reach. Naming him something that meant "helper" I guess paid off. haha! We have had a lot going on this Summer. We recently had the amazing opportunity to participate in Quest. For those who don't know what that is, its a Super Activity where we take the time to either participate in or watch reenactments of stories that took place in the Book of Mormon. It was amazing! I was a little apprehensive about it at first, because we had to leave Ezra behind. But he had a great time with his Noni, Papa & two of his cousins who were nice enough to drive up from Arizona to take care of him. Anyway, Quest. We were there to be tribal leaders, which meant we were in charge of a group of youth between the ages of 14 & 18 for the duration of our time there. We didn't know any of these kids before we got there, so it was a little weird for us at first, but boy do I have so much love in my heart for each of these 9 kids we were entrusted with. I love every single one of them. They didn't come without their challenges, but we were able to sincerely bond with most, if not all of them.
Me & My Bestie Hillary dominating the Tug of War for our Nation
Some of our awesome Tribal Family Cody, Samantha, Bethany, Allyson & I (we are missing Kassidy & Sadie)
Love these boys Tanner & Brady
Love these sweet boys too Cameron & Mitchell
While we were there my love for the Gospel, my Savior & the amazing people I am able to serve with ran deeper than it ever has. I loved it so much, it was hard to come home. I was able to live, breathe & experience the Book of Mormon in a way that few people will be able to do. It was entirely true, this experience was going to change lives, just as they promised us when we were asked to be a part of it. The fact that Cody & I got to experience it together made it all the better. We got to watch each other teach these kids about what they were watching & experiencing & witness the other's testimony in a way we wouldn't have been able to do at home. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity to go. I hope in 4 or 8 years we will be asked to come again. Our neighborhood camp out was the week after we got back. And since a lot of the kids from our neighborhood & some of the adults had gone on Quest with us, it was the best one yet. We have been so blessed to live in the place that we do. We have remarkable people around us that we are able to spend time with & strengthen relationships with. They teach us a lot & just love us so much, its very humbling. We have recently been talking about making our next move, and this summer has really made me reconsider. I don't love our house itself, but I could never duplicate the people I am surrounded by & the love I have for this Stake & Ward that we live in. Cody thinks that maybe if he found me the perfect house I might reconsider, but I always respond with, you must not know me as well as you think I do if you think the house would make the difference. I LOVE THESE PEOPLE! I have made friends I will have for the rest of my life. >They have been able to make me feel like I have family in a place that I most certainly do not. I can't imagine my life without them & they have been such an asset in raising my little boy. They are the type of people that more people should be. They are interested in people, in family & gospel principles rather than the things the world tells us is important & that is something I love being surrounded with. Who cares that a lot of them are a bit older than we are, I have always loved that about it. I love that no one cares about what anyone has or does. Everyone here is happy for everyone else, not envious, none of that. I know exactly why the Lord wanted us in this exact spot to start our family. I am so grateful that we prayed as hard as we did, and searched as thoroughly as we did to find the right place for us to be. And though it not be the nicest house, its home. Its full of love, surrounded by love, full of laughter & happiness (most of the time) and I love it & that is what is truly important. So that is what we have been up to & what we have been learning for the past little while. Hopefully I will be able to make more time to blog & write my thoughts down, because it does feel good :)