Sunday, May 22, 2011

Joy In the Journey

I just read President Uchtdorf's Conference Talk from the Priesthood Session (./ )  In the last section of his talk he spoke about airline pilots who were "merely going through the motions." He compared them to other pilots who had a contagious enthusiasm for flying. Then he said, "We can experience this greater joy if we but look for it. Too often we fail to experience the bliss that comes from daily, practical . . . service. . . . let us not pass through life immersed in the three Ws: wearied, worrying, and whining. We live beneath out privileges when we allow worldly anchors to keep us away from the abundant joy that comes from faithful and dedicated . . . service, especially within the walls of our own homes" (Ensign, May 2011, 61). 
This was so inspiring to me.  I need to find joy in the simple things in my home.  How blessed I am that I get to stay home and see and hear the great things my kids are saying and doing.  I don't have to worry about all the housework after a long day at another job.  When my baby is sad, I am the one who is comforting and holding her, even if the dishes aren't done or dinner isn't even started when my husband gets home.  I get to see her sweet smiles.  I'm the one who gets to see the beautiful rocks that fill the washing machine every laundry day.  I can drop everything and go outside to see the huge black widow my kids are terrified and excited about.  I can hear what they are learning about the gospel.  Ellie explains to us repeatedly that we are sheep and Heavenly Father and Jesus are our shepherds.  Brady announced the other day that there are two things that are always with us:  our shadows and the Holy Ghost.  I can find joy in a husband who works hard to support our family and still takes time to read to the kids, to play with them, to pull weeds, to take out the garbage, to run to the store for me, and more.  Instead of going through the motions because every day is much the same, I need to take the time to enjoy the small moments and have a contagious enthusiasm for motherhood.  The plus in this, besides my own and my family's happiness, is that my kids will look at that being a joyful mother is the greatest calling they could ever have.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Sacrament Meeting Reverence for Children Under 6

Any suggestions as to ways we can encourage our children to be more reverent in Sacrament Meeting? We know that the two oldest, ages 5 and 6, are mostly capable but cannot get it out of them. Quiet activities we have a plenty-we do not let them bring toys, food, or sit in the overflow................but they are so NOISY and WHINY NOISY! Maybe my expectations are too high. I'm wondering if some of you use some sort of positive incentive program that works for your family.

Christmas Traditions

I'd also like to hear some of the Christmas Traditions ya'll do in your families...................wanting to add and create some of our own.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Super Mom?

I've been wondering lately, what makes us try to be super moms? What is it that makes us think that everything has to be perfect and, in the meantime, we forget to enjoy the journey? What are the most important things? How do you know? How do you know when you are doing too much? How do we avoid trying to do it all? What are your priorities? What is most important for your family, and how do you fit it all in?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sleep Help

My 8 month old baby has been wonderful at night. At first she was getting up only twice at night and when I tried to reduce the nursing at night she nearly started sleeping through the night. It's the best time with her - she cries all day if she's not held. As a result, She cries A LOT. :)

So the last two weeks or so she has decided that she no longer wants to sleep so well. She's up 4-5 times a night and will not go back to sleep unless I nurse her. I could let her scream but she shares a room with the two year old who is difficult to get back to sleep.

We have discussed moving the two year old in the room with the two boys while we scream the sleeplessness out of her.........or putting the baby in bed with us which I am soooooooo against although she pretty much sleeps through the night this way. In the past with our babies, we have used what I call the "screaming method" and it has worked and I think would work in a hurry with this one but the sleeping arrangements are not so conducive to this any longer.

Suggestions? Words of wisdom or encouragement?

PS- LuAnn- how ya feeling?


I discovered this week a true gift from Heavenly Father for parents: Puzzles! I can't count the hours the kids have spent this week on puzzles. They enjoy them so much I had to go and spend a small fortune on more. Bliss. Almost no movies this week. *sigh* It was wonderful.

Monday, March 29, 2010

What Makes It All Come Together

My new ward is a good mix of a lot of things. Thrown into that mix are quite a number of home schoolers. I know that not everyone out there thinks that home schooling is a great idea, but this is something that I am very interested in, so I have been visiting the home schooling moms in my ward and finding out why they do what they do and how they make home schooling work for them. This is not a post about home schooling, by the way. I learned something from one of these moms that I think is valuable for everyone, whether or not you choose to homeschool. I wanted to share. I'm not saying that this exact method will work for everyone or is what everyone needs to do, but there are some really valuable ideas in what she shared with me.

This mom that I visited had been homeschooling for a long time and felt like it was not working like she wanted it to. She said she tried many different methods, but nothing really worked until she learned to pray. Once she figured out how to really communicate with our Heavenly Father, everything started to work.

She keeps a prayer journal that she shared with me. She organizes it in a specific way and uses it while she prays. She said that if she were the Primary President, she would go to each presidency meeting with a specific agenda. So, when she prays, she has an agenda, which is written in her prayer journal. She does not write a new agenda every day. She keeps the same agenda for a few weeks and lets that agenda guide her prayers.

Agenda Item #1: After addressing Heavenly Father, she always bears her testimony. This acknowledges God ("hallowed be thy name") and invites the Spirit immediately into her prayer.

Agenda Item #2: She has a list of people outside of her immediate familywho need her prayers in her behalf. Some days she prays for each one individually. Some days she asks for a blessing for all the people on her list.

Agenda Item #3: Gratitude. She expresses gratitude to the Lord for the blessings he has given to her, including trials. Gratitude for trials helps her to see what she is learning and how the Lord is turning her weaknesses into strengths. She frequently records the things she is grateful for in her prayer journal so that she is able to see the "tender mercies" of the Lord as he answers her prayers. (There's a great article about gratitude in the March Ensign.)

Agenda Item #4: Self. She prays for the things that she most needs, attributes that she wants to develop, goals that she needs help accomplishing.

Agenda Item #5: Husband. She prays for the things that her husband most needs and for his success in reaching his goals and his potential.

Agenda Item #6- . . . : Children. She prays for each individual child and their specific needs, difficulties, goals, etc.

Final Agenda Item: Temporal Blessings. She prays for the things her family is in need of. She is very specific. If they are short of money but someone really needs new shoes, she prays for shoes. Specific needs that they cannot meet themselves are what she brings to the Lord.

This is a big list. This is time consuming. She does not do this twice each day. She generally does this in the morning and tries, throughout the day, to keep a prayer in her heart. In the evening she prays briefly to thank him for his blessings and tender mercies.

What this idea is, to me, is a way to help us counsel with the Lord in all our doings. And I know it works. I am still in the beginning stages of finding how this works for me and finding what I need to do to communicate effectively with the Lord. It is something I've struggled with my whole life. However, I decided to give this a try after talking with this woman. I was worried. There were two and a half weeks left in March and we had very little grocery money left. I prayed that I could plan a menu that would fit in the budget and find the necessary food at reasonable prices. I carefully planned a menu and went through the ads. I comparison shopped as much as I could and found the cheapest prices. Then I went shopping at Walmart because they match all the ads. I was blessed to spend way less than I ever do at the store and bought the food that we needed for two weeks. We are not eating gourmet, but we are eating healthy, tasty, inexpensive food, and my prayer was answered. I am excited to counsel with the Lord and receive his help as I try to help my children gain testimonies and my husband reach his potential.