Final Farewell (for 3 years)
Last week we spent some time with my parents and siblings as one last hurrah before my parents head across the world to Preside over the China, Hong Kong Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We spent 3 days in an amazing cabin above Heber, UT. All the grand kids played sun up to sun down and got along beautifully! We spent time at the zoo, fishing, going on "adventures," going out to eat, and going to a water-park. There didn't seem to be a single fight between any of them! All the adults did pretty well too!!! It was a great time with my awesome family. While it was an incredibly bittersweet moment to see my parents say goodbye to my children who will no longer be little when they return, it was such a great reminder or how important it is for all of us to live our lives the way the Lord wants us to and how blessed we will be because of it. I am now and will be eternally grateful for such wonderful parents who have always been the best example to me!
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
We took a trip to visit J's family back in October. We had been lucky enough to get a hold of some tickets to go to the 9/11 memorial and decided we were going to take the kids. We had both been to the towers when they were standing, we had also been to ground zero not long after the attack and I was very excited to go again.
**I went to Pearl Harbor multiple times when I was living in Hawaii and I loved it. I loved how sacred that area was and how sobering it is to realize what a huge part of history it was. It is something that happened in the past. Something that changed the way life was before I was born. Something my grandparents remember and can talk about. They remember where they were and what they were doing. They remember hearing that 2402 people had died in that attack and what a blow it was to the Armed Forces and the American people in general. When you are there you cant help but wonder how a place so incredibly beautiful, a place that is still an active harbor, can also be the grave site of so many people. **
When we got off the subway we stopped to get some pizza at a place that used to look directly at the towers. This was a place that in the moments after the fall was covered in dust. I wondered if this store had messages written out of the dust on the windows. Did someone find this window and use it to send a message "Please find my dad. Help my brother. Please bring my son home." Like so many other windows that became a canvas for desperate messages.
In the middle of a rising business center, in the heart of one of the greatest cities in the world, sits the memorial. With construction sounds from all sides, security at the entrance, and no sound barrier from the usual sounds of the city I found myself lost in thought at how real this was. This was not history. This was part of my life. This would not be something my I would only read about in my history books or listen to grandparents talk about. This would be something I talked about. This is something I experienced. I know where I was and what I was doing. Like many, I watched the second plane hit and continued to watch the news coverage of all the attacks. I was 19 and I remember thinking "this cant be real?! This has to be some crazy accident. This cant happen."In my young age I was ignorant and naive to the politics and evil or the world. Nearly 3000 people died in the attacks. Innocent people who had no idea they had taken the front lines. Over 3000 children lost a parent. In the weeks that followed I remember crying and being so touched by the patriotism of so many people. The help extended, the cheers that rang out for all the volunteers and rescuers who were cleaning up. I remember how united we were as a nation how supportive we were of each other and even the government. As I stood on that sacred ground reading the names of those who were lost that day I turned to see my own children running and playing on the grass. They were laughing and smiling. They hadn't a care in the world. They were innocent and naive. As I walked along, realizing that so many people had literally become as dust of the earth, I watched my beautiful children and wondered what will be real to them. They had no idea what this ground was, what the fountains represent and what it all means. It was a contrast I will never forget. These innocent children smiling and laughing in a place made to replace the result of hatred.
Just like Pearl Harbor, we have a place that gives us a moment to stop while the world continues to go around us. It is a place to think about the past when everything around us points to the future. A place to reflect on our own lives before it to becomes a part of history.
Thanksgiving was fun. We were able to have J's parents come out. The weather was awesome!! A few weeks later (the first week of December). We went up to Utah to go to my families Christmas party and to go to our Nieces baptism. It was fun to see J's family again at the baptism and then be with my family for the party. My mom always does an awesome job with games and gifts and everything but this year was different. They had an extra guessing game (like wheel of fortune) for us to guess the phrases. Well, it didn't take us more than about a half second to realize something was up and we started guessing all sorts of things...family vacation, something new, going on a mission, etc. It ended up being an announcement to tell us that my dad had been called to serve as a mission president! There were a lot of tears and a lot of questions! We were all very excited to hear the news. Unfortunately we were told that they wouldn't know the location until sometime before March 1st (waiting is torture for me)!
The kids loved Christmas and New Years. We all had a marvelous time.
It January I celebrated my 30Th birthday! It was a fun time with sleeping in, eating lots of good food and visits from friends. I couldn't have planned a better day (unless the same thing happened in Hawaii...)
In February I flew to AZ and spent a few days with one of my great friends and helped her prepare a little bit for her new baby. We enjoyed spending time together and making meals to get her ready to be a mother of three. The kid and J had a lot of fun at home without me. J made it like a vacation. They didn't seem to miss me too much.
We also got a call from my parents on a Friday night...saying they got an email from the church saying that they have sent the location information and it would be arriving Monday morning. After a long weekend of waiting we were finally able to set up a conference call with all my siblings and my parents announced that they due to circumstances that had come up, their language had been changed and they would be speaking Cantonese and serving as the President of the Hong Kong mission! We couldn't believe it...literally, we DIDN'T BELIEVE it! My dad served his mission in Hong Kong and he has been there multiple times, and he even took my mom with him once. They were excited! We all are! They will be leaving at the end of June.
March made me the mother of a 5 year old. T had a wonderful birthday and is excited to be 5. Its hard to believe its been 5 years since I became a momma to such a wonderful little boy! I'm one lucky girl!
March also brought sadness as I learned some dear friend had lost a wife and a friend. It broke my heart as I remembered a wonderful woman and how much my friends were suffering. She was an incredible. beautiful, strong, happy, sassy woman will be dearly missed.
And it brings us now to April. Me and the kids spend a few days alone with my parents before they get ready to go. Unfortunately both the kids and I ended up getting sick by the end of the week and we were unable to go to my moms family Easter party. Jason had flown in on Friday and then we woke up early on Saturday and ended up driving home with sick kids. It ended up being a good week for the kids for hanging out and cuddling with grandma.
J has transferred locations for work and is excited to be heading up a wound care practice for his company in the hospital setting. He is really looking forward to spending more time doing what he loves (gross).
We don't have too many super cool things to tell everyone but we are healthy, happy, and extraordinary! (plus I don't remember all the things that happened in the past 8 months...)
Next item of business is to add a picture of MJ and update the other ones!
Sunday, September 11, 2011
A few weeks ago J and I celebrated six years of marriage. I could have sworn it was 7, but I looked at the calendar and its only 6. Weird. We aren't celebratory people so we typically don't do much for holidays or events but I really wanted to go to the Josh Groban concert and I needed a way to justify the cost...
It was a great concert. We had floor seats and we were about 40 (ish) yards from the stage but we were seriously within 10 feet of him when he was singing on his mini-middle of the floor-just him alone stage thing. We saw the sweat on his face. He is a great performer. Knowing we would be some of the younger kiddos there and the genre of music doesn't really induce screaming/jumping/mosh pit fun we weren't sure what to expect but he did a great job. It was fun and we really enjoyed our time out.
All in all six years was pretty darn good. Here's to another six or so. :)
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
She is walking...officially. My baby MJ girl is full on walking. She still crawls faster, but she thinks she is all that when she is cruisin' around all upright and stuff. The problem with kids growing up is that they actually do it.
In other EXTREMELY exciting news...TJ was recently sick with a cold and for the FIRST TIME IN HIS LIFE he didn't wake me up every hour or require me to sleep on the floor next to him. He took some meds before bed and took care of himself the rest of the time. This kind of growing up is not only acceptable, but encouraged.
Saturday, July 23, 2011
So, this guy...
He is great to have around the house...
He is on-time...
He is good with the kids...
He listens to me...
He is dependable...
He works hard...
He really makes me feel that making ME happy is what is most important to him...
I sleep better at night knowing he is watching out for me...
I don't think he is afraid of ANYTHING...
(...And other than J and T, he just might be the only guy I cant live without...)
Enter:Justin, bug guy.
I was talking with J the other night about the show Survivor. We were talking about what the contestants do for a shot at a million dollars. I mean, its a lot of money. The things I could do with a million dollars! Heck, the things I could do with 125 dollars! (which happens to be the amount of money KW was paid to eat a beetle the size of my little finger). But to be absolutely honest...I couldn't do it. Its not in the Bible or anything but I'm pretty sure after Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden, Eve looked at Adam and said " You have GOT to be kidding me...Idon't remember a mention of bugs in this plan..."
I promised myself these: would not be a part of my life anymore. Once in Hawaii, one of my roommates grabbed a box of cereal and poured herself a nice big bowl of Lucky Charms and Roaches. Oh, you haven't heard of it? Yeah, its full of sugar and protein. Nothing like watching your cereal look back at you before making a clean getaway. As if that wasn't enough for my low bug tolerance later that night as I was laying in bed (in 86 degree weather, no AC in my house, and a sheet stuffed tightly around my body), I heard that disgusting noise of little legs crawling along the walls and the floor. I reach over and clicked on the lamp and right above me on the wall was a cockroach a good 4-5 inches long just waiting to attack me in my most vulnerable state. We made eye-contact, he smirked at me, I picked up a shoe, he ran. As he ran away I'm certain I heard him saying "I'll be back." Didn't sleep much the rest of that night-or that year. I began sleeping flat on my back with a shoe under my arm and a flashlight (left on) shining on the wall above my head. I assumed that since I rarely saw cockroaches during the day that they must be scared of the light. I danno..made sense in my head. I also heard that those particular bugs get eaten by gecko's. I chose the lesser of 2 evils and I recruited a couple of geckos to put in my room.
When we bought our house last year I told J that he had to find me a good quality bug guy. He asked around at work and found a co-worker who shares my animosity for such creatures and she told us about the company she used. She said "I called a bunch of people in the phone book and BULWARK was the only one who GUARANTEED against scorpions." (Um...Come again? Scorpions...add that one to the list.) I verified that with a scorpion guarantee also comes death to cockroaches, crickets, beetles, ants, etc.
Its not just the interior. I mean, its awesome that I can get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night without a having to check the toilet seat first. Its wicked cool that I can leave dishes in my kitchen sink and there are NO bugs feasting on them when I wake up in the morning. Its flippin extraordinary that I can check on my kids and not find some nasty specimen CRAWLING ON MY KIDS FOREHEAD while he is sleeping (true story). But do you know how cool it is that as I walk down the street at night my house is the ONLY one that doesn't have crickets and cockroaches out on the prowl?!?
Before we put our sod in, we noticed we had ants all over the pre-determined sod area. Not just a few, but like a zillion and 3/4 of a billion. Justin noticed it and said "Hey, I saw you have ants back there, why don't I come back next week and bring my super awesome, powerful, die ants die spray and take a shot at it." Um...OKAY. He did...FOUR TIMES till those buggers were ERADICATED! Gone-done for-outa here. By the way, did I mention that EVERY FOLLOW-UP was FREE! I'm talking no charge, keep your pennies in your pocket, on the house, FREE.
Have I mentioned that in the (almost) year we have lived her I have only seen 2 spiders in my house, and 2 (dead) cockroaches in my garage. Boo to the YEAH.
So, call this a testimonial, an advertisement, a shout-out, or just plain old LOVE. But Justin, You had me at hello...You had me at hello.
For all you Vegas (and AZ, UT, GA, TX) area readers, if you are interested (and I know you are) check out:
(Please leave a comment if you think this post deserves to WIN 1 year of free Bulwark Service and if you think that Justin deserves a raise... :) )
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Friday, June 17, 2011
So much has happened in a year. We can't believe how fast it has gone, how difficult some of it has been, and how incredibly rewarding it has been as well! We have been incredibly blessed in the past year and it starts with the birth of "sissy-boo." As many may know she was our miracle. She continues to bless our lives every single day. My favorite thing to do is to leave her and T alone and watch them as the play, giggle, chase each other, and love on each other. The bond they have is unbelievable, undeniable, and unbreakable! They are best friends, but I am a close second.
MJ is a momma's girl. I cant do much without her hanging on my legs. If daddy is home and isn't giving her constant attention she will find me and hang on my legs whining till I pick her up. I try and tell myself to enjoy it? I guess its nice to know that there is at least 1 little person out there who prefers me to anyone else...
True to form, she wakes up at night quite often just like her brother. She is starting to sleep pretty consistently and some nights I'm only up with her once. (this is amazing people). J is great to help out but more often than not it's me who "gets" to put her back to sleep. Sometimes it's walking around the house talking to her, rocking her, or just singing to her. For whatever reason, our kids don't like sleep all that much and that wears on me big time. My children have definitely helped me develop a little bit more patience. Seeing my little baby girl when she is most vulnerable and needy I cant help but be grateful that I have her here, even if it is 3 in the morning!
We love this baby so much. She is *one* of the greatest things that has ever happened to us. She is calm, laid back, happy, and loving. She is a huge baby just like her brother. Last time I weighed her she was a whopping 26 pounds. Both she and her brother are dense humans. No rolls, not to much baby fat, but downright dense.
She loves water. I mean LOVES water. Drink it, play in it, get thrown in it, get it thrown on her, etc. She is a water baby! She even loves gasping for air after swallowing to much. The girl is crazy. She has learned how to tip herself forward while she is in her infant tube so she can dunk herself head first. Total drowning hazard.
She has bright blue eyes, crazy fluffy hair, a killer smile, and she loves to dance. If music is on, she just grooves...
She loves to wave and blow kisses. She gets shy sometimes and buries her head into my shoulder until she feels comfortable. She gets scared of big things very easily. Dogs, fish (yep), large weighted toys that bounce back when you hit them (found that out today). She wants to be held whenever she is nervous and she makes a very nervous grunting "ooohh-ing" noise.
MJ we love you so much. Thank you for being something light when its dark, something beautiful and calm in an ugly and scary time, and for being something extraordinary in an ordinary world...
I will post pictures sometime...yeah, Im not very good at that but Im really going to try.