Friday, June 26, 2015

Getting Wet

When I think of the good things about summer I think of pools.  I would be so much happier with the heat of summer if we had one....if only.  Oh well.  I can say that this summer break has been a good one so far.  Before we went out to Oklahoma I was wondering though.  My spirits were not doing well but going out there was the best medicine I could have asked for.  The boys and I haven't went a lot of places but its still been good.  I'm letting go of a lot of things.  The major thing being guilt of not making sure that every minute of the boy's summer break is accounted for.  That I don't have a schedule this summer to make sure that they are not on electronics all day long.  I'm letting go and just doing the best I can and I'm accepting that.  It feels good. 
 But we have had a little bit of wet time here and there.  This first picture was at Christine's neighborhood pool.
 One Family Home Evening we went outside and washed our cars and front porch.
And even went to a splash pad in Layton.  With the boys getting older, only Hyrum likes splash pads anymore.  But this one was little more entertaining for the older boys with this big bucket putting out water the way it does.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Roy Aquatic Center

 The Foster Care Foundation put on a swimming event for the families of foster care at the Roy Aquatic Center on Saturday.  It was perfect timing because Brigham has been bugging me to go swimming since being able to do so in Oklahoma.
(Levi on the left and Brigham's feet at the bottom of the slide)
They fed us and we played.  It was so nice being able to go to a public pool and it not be crowded.  Only the families of Foster Care were allowed in.  Baby Boy has just started to kick his feet to splash when I give him baths.  Yesterday, I sat down in the water with him in front of me and he would lean over and splash with his hands.  

Friday, June 12, 2015

Things You Can't Take Back

On Saturday evening we were ready to read scriptures as a family but couldn't seem to find the scriptures that we usually used.  So, I suggested that we read something from the Ensign instead.  David liked that idea and the boys picked an article, in the June issue, called "My Exploding Peaches."  Of course, they just thought it sounded funny so that is why they picked it.  But funny how things work because I already had an activity planned out for Family Home Evening the following Monday and this article fit perfectly with it. 
It spoke of a woman's experience with canning peaches that ended up exploding in a steamer when all the water had evaporated.  Peach goo as well as glass was all over her kitchen.  Because she was tired she left the clean up for the next day.  But when she went to clean it up the following day, it had hardened so much that it was almost impossible to get it all cleaned up.
As she was trying her hardest to clean it up, she heard the Spirit speak to her that these hard mounds of peaches and glass were like the hurtful and angry words that sometimes spewed from her mouth.  You can't take them back.  No matter how hard we try, they are always out there and they cause great damage.
After we read the story, David said something that I feel strongly about and I'm so grateful he pointed it out to the boys.  He told them that sometimes people will say terrible things.  Or sometimes they will say things that they don't think are a big deal to someone else, but to that other person it was so very hurtful.  And sometimes those who caused the hurt will respond with something like, "It's not my fault you were so offended."  He explained to the boys that we can't walk around in life just saying whatever we want and not expect consequences.   Whether someone takes something that you said in the wrong way or not, we are still responsible for what we said.  It is our responsibility to make sure that the other person understands what we really meant.  But the thing that is most hurtful is when someone meant to be rude (maybe because they themselves were hurt) and never recognizes to the other person that what they said might have hurt because THEY said it.  Not because the other person took what was said in a way that offended them.
I myself have witnessed as others have said very hurtful things to someone else only to respond with, "That's their problem that they took it that way."  Or, "They just need to get over it."  It is so sad to me that we live in such a prideful world that we can't even admit that what we have done just might have hurt someone and all they had to do was say something as simple as, "I'm sorry.  I never should have said that."
Saying sorry may not be able to take what was said back, but at least the other person knows that the person who said what they did cares about them enough to want to make it right.
 So Monday evening rolled around and we headed outside for Family Home Evening.  I knew that what we were about to do would get messy so there was no way we were doing this inside!
I gave each of the boys a can of shaving cream.  I told them to take the cans and get all the shaving cream out.  They were more than happy to do that!  But just before I could sense that they couldn't hold it in any longer, without getting it on each other, I told them to put the shaving cream that they had gotten out of the can back into the can.  Brigham said, "We can't.  It's impossible!"
I then reminded them of the story we read Saturday night.  How we can't take back our hurtful words.  When I asked them to get the shaving cream out of the can, without thinking they did it.  Never once thinking that there might be consequences.  This is like words we say that might hurt someone else.  Once it is out there, it is out there and we can't take it back.
 I have to admit that it was very hard to keep their attention though because they wanted sooooo badly to get it all over each other.  So I quickly ended it and let them have at it!

They had so much fun!  And even after their showers that night they smelled sooooooo good!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

PAL camp

Levi attended the gifted camp, that I talked about a few posts ago, last week.  He was there for 5 hours a day and he loved it!  I was afraid that might be a little to much "school" for his liking during his summer break but he loved it!  In fact, when he would be picked up (Maddie's mom picked him up most of the time) the majority of the time he had to be paged over the school intercom to meet his ride because he was still in his class working on his projects!  He didn't want to leave.
 On Friday evening, the program had a little "show off" type of thing for the parents to come and see what their children had done.  Levi had created 5 computer games!  This picture is of the boys playing Levi's games.  The one you can see in front of Hyrum reminded me of a Pac-Man style type of game.  

After he presented one of his games in front of all the parents, we went to the auditorium and watched Maddie perform.  She did great on her solo parts.
Later that night we invited Maddie and her family (I love her mom!) over to have ice cream bars and to light sparklers.  To me, it felt like summer break was really starting that night.  As David, Kristen, and I talked outside, all the kids ran around the house yelling and just being kids.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Day 5: Vacation in Oklahoma

We woke up early, said goodbye to Nanny and headed off to the Tulsa International Airport.  On the drive up there, we could hear Baby Boy grunting and I said a little prayer of thanks as I was worried that he would poop while we were in the air. 

Which reminds me of the blessing I received the night before we left for Oklahoma.  On a previous post I wrote about how I had been struggling with my depression ever since Brigham's hospital stay.  Well, the night before our trip to Oklahoma, I was feeling really anxious and I hated it.  I hated that I was going home to the people I love and I couldn't get my heart in a peaceful place.  So I asked David for a blessing.  As he always does, it was beautiful.  I truly am so grateful to be married to a man who is worthy of giving me such a blessing; a blessing that tells me what my Father in Heaven wants me to know.  One of the things that was spoken of in the blessing was for me to watch for the little blessings that Heavenly Father would provide me.  Later that night, Baby Boy had a HUGE bowel movement.  That may not be a blessing to some but for me it was significant.  He is morning pooper...always.  But with him having that bowel movement late that night, he never pooped while we were flying or even in the airports.

So back to him grunting in the car....

So we get to the airport and we have lots of time to spare.  So I thought I would change his diaper before checking in our bags and car seat.  I get him out of the car seat and can see that he had a blowout...poop everywhere.  Even on the car seat.  So Dad stays with the bags and Brigham (though he did offer to clean Baby Boy up...typical dad.  Always helping.) while I take little guy to the women's restroom.  I start taking off his outfit and realize the poop really is EVERYWHERE and decided to just chuck the whole outfit!  I only have so many wipes and think, what if he happens to have another bowel movement before I get to Utah and can't clean him up? 

So, I completely undressed him and put him in the sink and bath him!  Yep, this little guy can say he has had a bath in the women's restroom at the Tulsa International Airport!  Amazingly enough, no one walked in while I was doing this.  I can only imagine someone walking in and thinking, "What in the heck are you doing lady??!

Again, most would not consider that a blessing but can you imagine that happening while in the air?  Oh, that stresses me out just thinking about that scenario!

Once we got everything checked in, the guy at the counter asked if Dad was going with me, to help with the baby, to the gate.  I thought I had heard him wrong but sure enough, he meant going past the security gates with us.  Of course, I jumped on that!  Apparently, if you have a baby someone can come back with you, if the situation is you need help.  That just gave us more time to spend with Poppy.  So that is what the above picture is all about.  Poppy and his airport pass.

Both our flights were delayed but all went well.  Brigham was such a good helper.  Which really means a lot.  He doesn't like to hold Baby Boy but he helped me anyway without complaining and that made things so much easier.  In fact, as we were on our way home he told me that he thinks he is more comfortable with holding Baby Boy now.  Makes me smile.

Day 4: Vacation in Oklahoma

We wanted to have some sister time so we met at Stage to help April find a bathing suit.
 Somebody thought they could get down the merchandise themselves and ended up getting things all tangled up but hey, it makes for a perfect picture!
 Later we had lunch with Renee and Jessica Roberts.  I sure love having church family that stays church family, even after we move away.
 April and I went back to Jay to pick up all the kids and then headed back to Grove to get a few more.  Then it was pool time!
That would be Brigham in the air!

 (Brigham, Logan, and Elton)
(Allie, April, and Layne)
 (April and Shaylee)
 Then we headed back to Jay to have "Taco Tuesday" at Nanny and Poppy's house.
And Baby Boy had more time to be loved on by Uncle Stephen.  It was seriously so cute to watch Stephen with Baby Boy.  Stephen doesn't talk a lot but boy did he shine with Baby Boy.  And Stephen would just get Baby Boy giggling like nothing else.  It was precious to watch.

That night was the night that Brigham, Baby Boy, and I said goodbye to everyone but Mom and Dad (since we were staying the night with them).  Our first goodbye's were with Uncle Chuck, Grandpa, and Grandma.  I don't know if it was seeing Grandpa hold Grandma's hand as they were walking out to the car or Uncle Chuck making it a point to drive the car up close to make sure that Grandma didn't have to walk very far but it got me all choked up.  I bet they had no clue that I noticed.  But I did.  And I love them for loving Grandma so much.  I love them for being good men.  That is exactly what I want my boys to grow up to be like.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Day 3: Vacation in Oklahoma

So, with the plenty of rain that Oklahoma received just before we came, the dams in Disney were releasing a lot of water.  Brigham and I really, really wanted to go to Little Blue and swim but it was closed due to the flooding.  But Poppy took us, along with Logan and Elton, to go look at it anyway.  We didn't get very far though, because it was blocked off and guarded.
(Poppy, Logan, Brigham and Elton)
These were taken down by the big dam.  
The boys tried real hard to throw rocks far enough to hit the water but I think only Poppy made it.
After we got back, Baby Boy, Brigham and I went to Poppy and MeMaw's house.  Baby Boy was so content in their laps.  He really amazes me with his love for people.  He's not scared of anyone.  Levi was like that as a baby.
(Alisa, Brandy,Robyn, and Marlana)
 Later that night, the girls that I went to high school with got together for dinner.  That night was also baseball tournaments so a few of the girls could only stay long enough to say hi.  Because of this, many pictures were taken to make sure we got all the girls.
(Top: Alisa, Shaunda, Marlanda.  Bottom: Robyn and Brandy)
(Top: Nikki, Marlana, Alisa, Laura holding Baby Boy, and Skye.  Bottom:  Brandy and Shaunda)
(Top:  Laura, Alisa, Charlotte, and Marlana.  Bottom:  Brandy and Shaunda)
I LOVE THIS PICTURE!  This could not have captured the night any better!  We laughed and laughed.  I always enjoy girls night outs but this felt extra fun.  Probably because there were more here than usual.  I didn't want the night to end with the girls, but Baby Boy needed to sleep.  Since I needed a ride home, Marlana, Laura, and Skye came back to April's house with me (that is where I was staying that night) and I'm so glad they did.  I love these girls so much.  I love their honesty.  I love that I can be ME around them.  Every time I come down, I always get to see Marlana and I'm so grateful for that but visits with Laura have been VERY far between.  She recently moved back to the area so it's a lot easier now to see her.  I kept looking at her that night and thinking that she was a true definition of the saying that, "We may not see each other often but it is always like nothing has changed when we do see each other."  I can be completely open with her.

Day 2: Vacation in Oklahoma

 Day 2 in Oklahoma was Sunday so we started it off with going to church.  But before that, I had to take more pictures.....of course!
Church was nice to not only see all our old friends and church family but also to see the difference on how things are done.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is very united.  We have the same lessons in Utah that are taught on the same Sabbath in Africa.  I love that and it is comforting.  But I also love to witness the difference in the way that cultures will do things in different parts of the world.  And yes, Utah and Oklahoma do things differently!  Because the church in Grove is so much smaller than our ward here in Utah, it is a lot more personable in Grove.  I loved how Bishop Roberts pointed out certain people in class and gave compliments.  He builds his church family up and I love that.
Because of the flooding, a marriage reception was put off the previous Friday.  But since everything was safe on Sunday and the church was already decorated for it, they had the reception right after church.  It was cool walking into the church, to participate in Sabbath worship, but to see wedding decorations.  To others that might be weird, but to me it showed a small church in unity.
 Speaking of the flooding, I took some pictures of the results in Grove.  This is just a few blocks from the church.
 This is right behind the McDonald's in Grove, and though you can't see it, this is actually a park.  This park always floods when there is more than usual rain but I have never seen it get this close to the main road.  This guy here is telling me about how this is the perfect time to catch Catfish because they like to come up and nibble on the new grass.  Who ever said Rednecks aren't educated just see education in a different way, that is for sure.  After I told April what this guy was teaching me, she said something to the effect of how knowledge is found in very different ways.  This man is obviously very educated in the ways of nature.
 But it still cracks me up that people are fishing in a park so close to the road!
 After church we all went to Mom and Dad's house for dinner.  Amanda, April and I just talked, acted silly, and eventually took naps in the living room.
 It's weird to me that something as simple as this is so relaxing.  So familiar.
 Logan LOVED Baby Boy.  It really through me off guard every time he would be playing with Baby Boy.  Logan looks so much like Hyrum!  In fact, when I was showing Hyrum pictures from the trip, he saw this one and said, "Is that the cousin you say I look like?"  Even he can tell he looks like Logan!
I let Brigham spend way to much time on electronics on this trip but for once I don't feel guilty about it.  This is one of the ways he bonded with Elton.  Those 2 boys are electronic boys through and through.  But even when they were not on electronics, they connected easily and naturally and I love that!

Day One: Vacation in Oklahoma

Brigham, Baby Boy, and I got to fly to Oklahoma and stay for 5 days (May30-June3).  It was special for all of us.  It had been 3 1/2 years since Brigham had been to Oklahoma.  Baby Boy hadn't met my side of the family yet, other than Nanny at the airport about a month ago.  And I just really needed to see my family.

 This cracks me up because from the moment we walked through the security gates, April was trying to hug and love on Brigham.  Brigham doesn't liked to be touched much and if he is ok with it then it needs to be brief.  But April wouldn't let it go and she kept teasing him.  It was fun to watch!  So this is a picture of one of the many times she pestered him!  She made sure SHE was going to sit next to him on the ride home from the Tulsa Airport to Jay, Oklahoma.
 Speaking of April's silliness, I LOVE THIS PICTURE!  I love it for a lot of reasons but since I'm on the topic of April, I'm so glad that Amanda showed me how to cover up Baby Boy's face so that I could put these pictures on the internet.  The picture I chose to cover up his face is just too perfect considering what April's face looks like in the picture!
Soon after the last picture was taken, Uncle Chuck, Brigham, Elton, and Big Elton headed off to Arkansas for a Minor League Baseball game (Naturals).  I'm so glad Big Elton took this picture, well, because I'm obsessed with taking pictures but also because I now have TWO pictures of Uncle Chuck willing to be in a picture!  That is huge for Uncle Chuck!!!!  And if you notice in the group picture, little Elton is actually smiling.  This picture at the baseball game is what I am used to with him.  Not wanting to be in pictures.....just like his stinkin' father!

 But while the boys were heading off to their baseball game, I got to be with Amanda and her boys along with Grandma and Grandpa. 
 This picture kinda makes me sad.  I am very close to my Grandma and everyone knows it.  And yet I feel like on this trip I didn't see her enough.  When I came out 2 summers ago with Levi,  I felt like I didn't spend as much time as I wanted with my parents.  This is what sucks about living so far away and only getting a few days with family.  It's really hard to equally spread out time.
 Shaylee riding the donkey/giraffe.  Silly, beautiful girl!
It hasn't even been a week since we have been back, but I know this trip did my spirit wonders.  I had been struggling with my depression on and off since Brigham's hospital stay.  I desperately needed to see my family.  I needed to see the place I grew up in.  I needed my girls night out with my high school friends.  I needed April to make me let her stay up with Baby Boy so that I could really sleep (something I hadn't done in a while).  I needed to stay the night with my parents so I could have one and one time with them and reconnect (and it was absolutely wonderful, by the way!).  I needed to giggle with my sisters....really giggle!  And remanence on younger years.  I needed to be reminded of the importance family unity; that it really doesn't matter our differences.  We all have them, and that is what makes families beautiful! 
And you know what?  In a few days it will be a week since I have been back.  I am sick a again and yet I am ok.  This trip was the best medicine I could have ever asked for to get me back on track.  Back to thinking the right way.  Back to being mentally healthy.