Monday, October 31, 2016

Refugees and Temple Square

With the Church encouraging its members to help the Refugees, well, it has been on my mind the last 6 or so months.  A lot.  Should we foster another child?  Do we physically go down to Salt Lake and help with some of the organizations there?  Do we just give money?  

Like many things in life, it wasn't an easy answer for me.  But then I got our Cub Scout budget.  Well, what was left over for the year.  We had quite a bit left over, with only a few months left to go.  I made sure that the leaders wouldn't need the money for something else first and then went and got lots of hygiene items for the boys to make kits that they could give to the refugees in Salt Lake. 
All the the Cub Scouts helped with this but I forgot to take pictures the night we put them together.  But since Hyrum and Urban went with us to deliver the hygiene kits later, they got to be in the picture.  

They were able to tour the building and see the classrooms where these refugees were learning the English language.  They got to hear of the many ways that this organization (Refugee and Immigrant Center, Asian Association of Utah) is helping the refugees.  I had already done my research before choosing this organization but coming here and talking to the staff (and actually seeing some of the refugees) really opened my eyes to the MANY ways they help.  It's not just about sheltering them or helping them to stay clean.  They also offer training in so many areas.  And think about all that they have seen.  Mental health needs to be addressed.  There are just so many aspects to the lives of refugees.  I am so grateful that this organization is doing what it is. 

As you can see from this picture, the refugees are coming from many places.  They said that right now, they have most coming from Somalia.  Both Levi and Hyrum were actively asking questions.  Such a simple thing, yet it made me proud.
Afterwards, I though I would take them to Temple Square.
The temperature was mild and was not crowded so I enjoyed it very much.
There were times that Levi wanted to go home, Ruger wanted out of that stroller, Brigham was teasing a brother, and Hyrum was zoning out but all in all, it was good.  It was a real good day.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Feeling Content

(Alisa and David at the Rush Funplex over the weekend...and yes, we brought the boys too:)
Last night David and I were laying in bed and I told him that I felt content.

He told me that I deserved that and that he felt that I didn't feel that often enough.

He's right.  And I want to work on that.

Feeling that satisfaction of peacefulness.  Of joy.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Francis Peak

Last Saturday David drove us up to Francis Peak.  The very winding, and at times steep, road up there was a little uncomfortable for Levi and I in the front seat of the truck but it was worth it.  Well, maybe not for Levi but it was for the rest of us.  I just had to make myself look the other way when we were driving on certain parts of the know....the parts where if you look you can see straight down the mountain!  
 But look at this.  So beautiful.  And it was fun to get high enough to play in the snow a bit.
 The domes behind Brigham look like little specks down here in civilization.   So it was fun to come up here and learn that they were ran and operated by the Federation Aviation Administration and The Air National Guard.  It's good to feel protected :)
 Not everything was covered in snow, though so of course there was some climbing.
 The boys immediately started to throw snowballs and rocks down the mountain and so Ruger had to join in.
So, cute Hyrum was not happy when he first learned we were going up to Francis Peak.  We had this hornet nest and its occupants, right outside the front of our house that no matter how many times David sprayed it down they just kept coming back.  None of us ever got stung but by the end of the summer Hyrum was pretty freaked out by well as bees.  

So when we told him we were going up a mountain he started to freak out a bit because he didn't want to run into bees.  So I told him that I had just read that for the first time some bees were now on the endangered list.  I reminded him about how very important bees are for our survival.  He then wanted to know all about why they were endangered and was happy to know that I never use chemicals in our garden for that exact reason (plus, I don't want us eating that poison.  But I did tell him that there were some places in the world where insects were so bad that it was really hard for people not to use pesticides).   

And guess what?  Before we left, he was telling me about how he really wishes that the bees would be safe now.  I sure do love this sensitive boy of mine.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Conference Weekend

David served in the Tulsa, Oklahoma mission for 2 years.  One of the states that he served in was Missouri.  He had the wonderful opportunity of serving in Lebanon where he met Susan.  I should have David get on here and write his own experience because I could never get it quite right.  Getting it into words that would describe how much he loved his experience there and especially Susan, just wouldn't turn out the way he truly feels.
 Susan and her husband, John, drove out to Utah to be able to attend one of the sessions for General Conference.  But before going to conference, some missionaries that they had grown close to (that have now left their missions and moved back home/college) over the years met up with them at In-N-Out Burger in Draper.  

The drive to Draper was nice, as David and I were able to just talk.  I love these simple things...especially when I notice that they are indeed special.

But seeing David and Susan together was so very special to watch.  It's not like I haven't known how close these 2 are.  David has spoken of her many times throughout our marriage.  When someone is able to teach about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and then is able to baptise you in Jesus' name, well, I can only imagine.  Knowing Jesus the way that he did at this time in his life was rather new to himself.  I'm sure it was very personal to him to be able to share it with her at that time in his life.  And then to think of Susan's side of it.  How do you not have a special love and bond with someone who shares with you something so life altering as this? 

It has been years since she was baptized.  We have seen her here and there throughout the years and their bond just doesn't change.  It really is a sweet thing to witness.

It was also fun for me to hear John's accent.  It made me miss home!  And my dad...  I loved listening to him talk about the Church and how he saw things.  Reminded me so much of my own father.
And then there is conference weekend.  I look forward to it.  I need it every time it rolls around.
But I forgot just how hard it is to actually get things out of it with a toddler!  And sadly, the older boys just feed off of it.  As you can see, it wasn't long before they were rolling up in blankets and trying to smash into each other.  I also witnessed pushups, paper airplanes running into the ceiling fan, and food being thrown on the floor in different directions.  

Ok, so maybe the last one was me.  Hahahaha!  I have freeze dried corn that Ruger loves.  The other day I was so tired and he was sooooooo not!  I got desperate and was sitting on the ground feeding him by throwing the corn, one by one, in different directions to get him to run some of his energy off.  Yep, mother of the year here!  So I tried it again during conference and it worked like a charm!  He was finally quiet as he was running from corn piece to corn piece.  At one point, he got down on his hands and knees and picked up a piece of corn by his mouth.  We just giggled and giggled as he looked like a little chick pecking at his food!  

Interesting enough, the talk that spoke the most to my soul was the one about the difficult child.  Elder Nattress' talk couldn't have been more of what I needed for raising Ruger!  I told David that I was going to print out his talk and read it daily!  Ha!  But in all seriousness, I definitely walked away with the assurance that Ruger can have a great future.  

I am so tired all of the time.  He is so very active and there is not a day that goes by that he has not done SEVERAL things to danger his life.  There are days that I just don't understand how he doesn't learn to stop doing dangerous things when he knows he gets hurt.  But I also know that he doesn't feel things the same as everyone else.  But just to try to get whoever reads this to understand, that first conference session that lasted only 2 hours, yeah....  In that amount of time he bit into his tongue twice (once by falling on his own and the other as he had snuck down stairs.  Hyrum was trying to get him back up and unfortunately when Hyrum did that, he didn't have the strength to pick him up completely so he decided to just push him up the stairs.  Yeah, that lead to Ruger's head hitting one of the stairs as he was being pushed up which lead to Ruger biting into his tongue) and fell down the stairs!  We have a gate but he has figured out that if he pushes it hard enough, he can open it by himself.  He rarely can get enough strength to do it, but as you can see he was able to do it twice in 2 hours!

I'm getting off track but I did come away from that talk knowing that if I just keep on going...If I just try my hardest and if I can push a few words of wisdom in there here and there, he is going to make it.   He can not only reach adulthood but he can be a great leader too!