Friday, July 1, 2011

Moving on...

I've always kept a big box fan in the hallway between my kids' bedrooms upstairs.  It is so loud that it blocks out just about any other noise in the house.  My kids have gotten used to the sound and it lulls them to sleep.   When they were babies it, more importantly, KEPT them asleep.

Yesterday was our last day in our "dream" house.  One of the last things I packed and sent to storage was the box fan.  It hurt a little.  Almost as if I was packing away all the memories of bedtime stories and babies napping.  Then night came.  Around 1 a.m. I headed to my room to find all four of my sweet babies sound asleep on my floor in their sleeping bags.  My heart ached.  I remembered the first night we slept in that new, big house.  It had taken Craig 1 1/2 years to build it.  He'd slept there most nights on a cot and worked day and night.  That was going to be our forever house.  We were so excited to move in that the first night we didn't even have beds.  It was just Craig, Lizzie, Gracie and I, 7 months pregnant with the twins, on the floor in our sleeping bags.  I don't think I slept more than 20 minutes that night.  But it was the silence that I remember most.  Dead. Quiet.  As my little family slept around me.

Last night was the same.  I lay there in the stillness and listened to each of them breathing.  It was so clear.  So peaceful.  I realized for the first time that the huge box fan, while serving a great purpose, had also kept me from "hearing" my kids as they slept each night.  Their sighs, their snores, their whispering dreams.

As much as I loved that beautiful house and living there, I think that it has been a huge box fan in my life for the past 5 years.  I've been so consumed with trying to keep it and the yard clean and tidy and decorated...while Craig has been overwhelmed with trying to make up for the huge hit his business took with the fall of the economy as well as doing whatever it took to pay for that big house with its big mortgage.   We'd finally had enough of that noise in our life.  It had become necessary, on many levels, to sell.

This morning we rolled up our sleeping bags.  We took one last walk through the house with the kids.  We stopped in each room sharing memories that we'd had there.  We cried and cried.  I will always love that house.  I hope I will not always feel the empty hole for it that I feel right now.  I will add this experience to my little book of "hard- things- in- life- that- I- wish -I -didn't- have- to -experience -but -know -that -I- will- learn -a- tremendous- amount- from."

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Yogurt for a Cure!!...Monday, May 9th (all day)

I'm sure many of you know that I have an 8 year old daughter with Cystic Fibrosis.  We are so confident that a cure will be found and we are doing all that we can to help that happen!!  Will you join us?  Tomorrow from open to close 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.  they will donate 20 % of all purchases to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.  Just be sure to mention CF...Please come and tell your friends and neighbors.  I'll see you there!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Little notes

I love the little notes I find around the house written by my children.  Of all the things I know I will miss about them, I think the notes and pictures will be missed the most.  Here is one I found on the bathroom door one Sunday.

p.s. The funny thing about it is that Lizzie didn't write it.  Gracie did and signed Lizzie's name. 

Found on the bathroom door by the garage on Sunday, April 17th, 2011


Sunday, April 10, 2011

Easy like a Sunday Morning

I love Sundays.  We have the perfect church time: 11:00. Sleep in, come home with a lot of afternoon time left to enjoy.  I'm sure our Sundays are not much different than other families with young children but I did some observing today and wanted to record my musings for a day when my children were all grown and not so crudely amusing. 

Before church was pretty uneventful.  Got ready and left about 15 minutes usual.  When we got home Hallie dropped her animal crackers on the floor of the garage and wailed forever about it.  We all got inside the house and I announced I would be making nachos for lunch.  Everyone was happy.  I made the nachos and suddenly 2 of my children had changed their minds.  I put a big dollop of sour cream on top of everyone's nachos thinking this would get them excited.  The first to try them was Lizzie.  She made a disgusting face and yelled, "This sour cream is rotten."  It was all over for the nachos after that.  Nobody wanted them anymore. 

Hallie followed me for most of the afternoon, attatched to my thigh.  Whining, whining, whining. 

I went to the fridge to see what else I could bring out.  I bent down to look in the meat compartment when CJ came up behind the fridge door and slammed it on me as hard as he could.  Awesome.

Hallie let go of my thigh for a few minutes and I heard her from upstairs, "Somebody diarrhead in the potty and its going to get on the floor."  I yelled back that her dad would be up to check it out.  He shot me a glance like, "Thanks a lot." 

We finally got the kids fed and sent them down to the basement to watch a movie while we took our Sunday nap.   Aren't Sunday naps the best?  I'm not sure why they are so much better than slipping in a nap on a Wed. or Sat.  but they are for some reason.  Before we knew it all four kids were back in the bed with us watching a re-run of Chuck.  I told Craig that I really didn't want to make Sunday dinner.  He agreed so instead we had milkshakes for dinner.  It was the best dinner I've made in a long time. 

After "dinner" we played Chutes and Ladders (Gracie, Hallie, CJ and myself) while Craig and Lizzie played Monopoly.  Hallie cried every time someone got ahead of her and wailed when Gracie won.  *Note to self:  Need to start teaching good sportsmanship to Hallie.

All in all, today was my perfect day.  All my favorite little people around me.  My sweet husband that loves me despite my rotten sour cream and milkshake dinners and I can hear him doing 2 days worth of dishes as I am typing.  I heart him sooooo much. 

Life is oh, so good.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Imperfections and Gratitude

The holidays were crazy this year.  Jewelry orders kept me swamped until the week before Christmas.  Two days before Christmas, Craig and I were scrambling around Wal-mart trying to wrap up Christmas for the kids.  Mental note: Next year, start earlier! 

Craig and the twins crash after a Christmas party

The week of Christmas brought tons of unexpected situations for our family members.  Craig came down with the flu and was walking around with wadded up tissues in both nostrils for almost a week.  Among the other surprises of the week for family members were: a forced move 3 days before Christmas, a new baby born 5 days before Christmas and a serious infection that kept one of our sweet nephews in the hospital until Christmas Day.  That week is still a whirlwind in my mind.

I have a tendency, as a lot of women do, to feel guilt...all...of...the...time.  Guilt for not helping others more.   Guilt for not being a better mother.  Guilt for not having a cleaner house.  Guilt for not spending more quality time with my husband.  Just guilt for pretty much everything you can think of.  And I won't lie.  This Christmas season had it's fair share of it.  I wish I could have been everywhere for everyone and I wasn't. 

One afternoon a few days before Christmas, I bent down to wipe CJ's nose.  He rubbed my cheek so softly with his cold little fingers.  I gave him a tight squeeze and my eyes quickly scanned the room.  Craft papers and crayons strewn across the kitchen floor.  Last nights rice under all the chairs at the table.  The sink full of dirty dishes, tiny fingerprint patterns of stick people all over the back sliding doors.  I wanted to cry. I felt inadequate, frustrated and exhausted....

And then I felt love.  An overwhelming sense of love and gratitude filled me.  I believe strongly in a loving Heavenly Father.  I know it was his way of telling me, "You're doing just fine, Lora." 

That feeling stuck with me for several days.  I found myself alone on my knees many times this Christmas season giving thanks for the good in my life and praying for the ones we love that were having such hard trials.  It had suddenly become so clear to me that I had SO many things to be grateful for.  Thinking about my family and those around me that were struggling awakened me to to fact that I have virtually no control over my life.  I can't keep illnesses away.  I can't control the economy and whether or not there will be work for my husband.  But I realized that the one thing I DO have control over is my home:  the feeling in my home, my personal attitude and beliefs the way I raise my children. 

Lizzie and baby Tustin while Papa read Luke 2

I am grateful for a life that is so so far from perfect but so good and so filled with love.
Gracie and Duke (who recently has become more of an "inside" dog)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Thank goodness for a good man.

The summer is beginning to change.  Can you feel it?  It's the little things like cooler evenings, the slight rustling of leaves and the faint sounds of Riverton High's marching band practicing.  And, of course, the school supplies.  They're everywhere. 

So in honor of summer ending, we thought we'd sneak the kids out of school for one of the last boating days of the year last Friday.  We were supposed to meet my sister and her family at Deer Creek at 11 am.  Things were going pretty good until it became close for time to leave.  We realized we'd forgotten this or that and CJ was constipated and the list goes on.  We finally got on the road about 10:30.  Heading down I-15 we noticed people pulling up along side us waving hysterically and pointing to the boat.  I looked back to find that the back seat was missing.  Not flapping or bumping up and down....just GONE!  We pulled over.  I looked into the back seat of the car and noticed Lizzie crying into her arm.  She suddenly burst out, "Mom, it's my fault.  I put something under the seat before we left."  Wow.  I was impressed with her honesty.  Craig and I walked back to survey the damage.  No back seat.  One missing life jacket.  I looked at Craig who just stared into the boat.  I said, "She feels pretty bad about it."  He responded.  "Just don't say anything else about it when we get into the car."  And that was it.

We circled around a few exits and came back up the freeway to look for it.  There it was.  Our lovely, big back seat thrashed to pieces in the middle lane of the freeway.   I called 911 and reported a boat seat in the middle of the freeway.  They said they'd send someone right out.  We continued on our way to lake. 

We stopped at the mouth of the canyon to fill up.  Craig told the kids to run in and pick out one thing each.  Gracie jumped out of the car and yelled, "Mom, I didn't wear any shoes."  I gave her mine and got back in the car.  While I waited I texted my sister (she and her family had been waiting for us for an hour at the lake.)  In the text I said, "Be prepared for white trash boating."  After that I sat in the quiet car and thought about my man and the way he'd handled a really crappy situation.  Could've been so much worse.  Could've ruined our day.  But it didn't.

The lake was freezing but we had a blast.  Suzy and I got thrashed around on the tube for a while and when we went flying off I hit the water so hard I thought she'd kicked me in the stomach.  Almost threw up.  Had a headache for the rest of the day. 

Don't worry I got him back, GOOD.  Who says white trash boating can't be fun?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Me...the amputee.

I've got lots and lots and lots to blog about this summer. So much to little time. But for now, I'll leave you with a little laugh from the picture below taken at Lake Mead on July 4th. Yes, that is me. Apparently I am an amputee, or so it appears!  Toodles!
Lora, the amputee and Dylan jumping off the back of the boat. Lake Mead, July 4th, 2010