{Perspective & Gratitude}

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Since Rod has been gone i have been clenching my jaw. Clenching when asleep, driving, cleaning, breathing. So pretty much all the time. I have to constantly remind myself to release. All this tension has given me a headache the size of Texas that has not given up. I have been working through the aches & going on with daily chores, Christmas preparations, kids schedules. But yesterday I needed to stop. So I let myself. I wasn't sure about skipping all Tuesday afternoon activities so I said a little prayer that heavenly Father would give me the strength to get through the late night or to give me the peace to take a break. I always feel guilty when I miss something scheduled. I am nutty. Funny part is the very 1st thing Maddox said to me when I picked the children up from school was "Mom I am really tired. Can we take a rest tonight." Okay! Yup. I hear ya! Answered prayer. So we did. We went home put on pajama pants & watched Studio C via YouTube, played Lego's & cars & babies.  I made an easy dinner & we had nice long hot tubs. The children played so well together & I just knew that this night off was needed! My headache has stopped being so intense & the relief has been a huge blessing. I am so glad our little Maddox is so in tune with the spirit. He always has been. He is so busy & loud & furious, but somehow his little heart hears what others do not. The break last night helped me prepare for a happy & productive day of Christmas shopping with the littles before dressing the kids up for the USO Christmas dinner. There was some really sweet patriotic & Christmas songs sang by the USO entertainment corp. The patriotic songs made me cry. I kept my eye on T to make sure he was holding strong. The kids loved it! Cooper danced & Presley yelled "I see their panties mommy!" as the singers danced in their cute little performance numbers. which were tasteful, just short. i about died. & Then...the male in the corp came down into the crowd & was walking around. Presley climbed up on her chair & started waving & batting her he came over & serenaded our girlie. she was so excited! She kept saying "He sang to me mommy!"  After the musical show we ate from the buffet. Britt was thrilled to have ham. He loves ham! Then came the high light of the night! The children were invited to sit with Santa & then his elves handed the children a gift for each of them. Santa had asked us before hand to pick a gift up to $50 per child for the event. & Santa came through! Each received a gift that suited them well. Presley went bananas over her baby. She has wanted one forever & ever, but we have been hesitant because a doll that potties?! but its the one thing she has talked & talked about. Tre convinced me to let him read hunger games. again..hesitation, but we agreed that he could as long as he talked to me if he felt uneasy. He has loved the 1st book so Santa brought him the next 2. We shared this night with some sweet friends! Maria & Kristen both have husbands where Rod is & they are medical as well, but they are on a different MFST team then Rod. They are a few months further into this adventure so I really look up to them! They are strong & find happiness through the time apart. We were a sight to see with 13 kids between the 3 of us. I was really overwhelmed in the nights festivities because Coop had a melt down & the keeping track of 5 kids is always an adventure.  But when I walked out of the event I was hit with perspective & gratitude. There were so many volunteers that wanted to help & who did things like watch kids, help serve food, set up, clean up, shop, cook, perform, organize, decorate...It was a 5 star event & gifts for all those babies with moms & dads overseas...what a huge undertaking! & What a wonderful thing to do for children who have to celebrate Christmas with out a parent. I am so grateful for the USO, & for the Gary Sinise foundation. The little boys went to bed with big smiles on their faces & new toys in their arms...& Presley, well I have had to change her shirt 3 times from baby alive. Having children is just too funny & wonderful. Christmas through their eyes is magical. 


Thursday, December 17, 2015

11. its scary for me really. You are more than 1/2 way out of the nest. You remind me when you talk about serving a mission, going to college. Its all going by. This year has been so hard on you. Moving from Texas to our new city was a really hard blow. I remember watching you go through the steps I did as a child. 1st your super sad to be leaving best friends...the 3 other horsemen, Brandon, Avery Grace your little valentine, Maddison, Morgan...all the kids on the street. & Then you started getting excited about the pool in the back yard, the bigger house, sharing with only Britton, the newness. You were so optimistic & ready for adventure as we drove up to our new home. You were giddy while I cried & cried. You held me together much of the time with your wonder & awe of the lights & exciting new memories we were making here. & Then School started. At Hardy oak you were so involved. Student council rep, choir, lacrosse, flag football, battle of the books, service projects, math name it & your face was in the year book group shot of it. People loved you. Teachers & students alike. But here you are starting over. You have had to figure out where you fit in & its been very hard to sit back & let you navigate this as a big kid, because I remember it, I remember being the new kid again & again. I hated it. Its been hard on you. But you are keeping that chin up! You have good friends who have your back. Porter & Jay, Eliana & Katie are all amazing! Porter shows up to play & when you show up at his house he is happy to see you. He is a sweet kid & he is an answer to my prayers! I tell you often that its hard, & I know. But that you can grow in rocky terrains. In my experience our testimonies grow most of all when we are challenged. You got this buddy! Already you are in the middle school math class, the accelerated 5th grade class, scouts, high dive... you are so smart & good & talented. I know you can offer so much to this community. So look for opportunities to give & be something wonderful. You certainly are wonderful in my eyes! 
Happy 11th  Tre-Tre. Thank you for making me a mother & teaching me how to be a Mommy.

you wear my shoes.
I wear your shoes.
you are almost as tall as Omah.
You love riding your bike.
Studio C is your show of choice.
You are so witty.
You read old conference talks & write Dad about them. 
You are eating me out of house & home.
You love to read
You are incredibly helpful
you are my old soul & my tender hearted guy.


for your birthday we did our hot breakfast with a candle tradition. You got a super awesome bike that the Keys helped me keep under wraps. You also got a new helmet that Dad picked out special for ya. The boys were so excited that it was your birthday!  for your school treat Sister White & I ordered pizzas for you & Eliana ( who was born on the same day as you!) to share with the class. It was a big hit! The weekend after your birthday we skipped town & headed to Omah & Opah's house to celebrate your day! We went & saw zoo lights & even convinced the giraffe to sing to Daddy, you were my bravery in asking him to sing. Then we had your favorite-ice cream cake. When we got back in town we went to a local chocolate factory & saw the men & women working super hard in the factory. We then walked around the gardens & froze, But the lights & company were just amazing! we had a good time. I hope you felt extra loved! What a fun long birthday weekend! 


Saturday, December 05, 2015

Oh my goodness! 
Boys! You did so good! I was so excited watching you put all the practices to the test this weekend! Sometimes you little ones can be silly & have a little too much fun sneaking up on big kids, hanging out under the hot showers, chit chatting. BUT! This weekend you put on your serious game faces & walked out on those boards with purpose & confidence! On Friday you competed on the 1 meter boards. With coach Cami, Coach Natalya, Coach Danni & Coach Derrick all cheering you on! You gave it your best. Tre took a silver home. Britt a gold, & Maddox you took home a bronze. All the competitors were friendly & their parents were too. The natorium had such a good feel in it! You guys were great sports & shook hands with those you dove with. Tre was so positive & encouraging with you boys during your warm ups. I know his help was part of your success. & Britt you were darling when Maddox got the first award & you ran up to him & hugged him so tight. you were so genuinely happy for him! My heart melted!  On Friday night Mommy & Tre spent 5 hours at the pool helping with different jobs that needed doing during the meet. You younger ones stayed home & rested after a long week of lessons & meet preparations. Tre & I got home late and we all crashed hard! Saturday morning I had to wake you guys up so early! I felt so bad! You each looked like you needed the extra sleep! You looked so peaceful. But we had to go! Maddox competed on the 3 meter boards bright & early with help from coach Luke. (you boys really do well with Luke & Natalya. They speak your language. you work hard for them.) Maddox you were so cute up there! Everyone was commenting on how sweet you looked. You are small but fierce! You did great & was given another medal. This time a silver. You all looked so thrilled after your first meet. We are all still walking on clouds a bit from such a fun long weekend! Now we are getting back on our regular schedule & Mommy has a mountain of laundry to fold....but all the long nights really paid off! I love you my little divers! also... I love your long skinny legs. As babies I loved your leggies....not much has changed! 

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