Daily Life, Thoughts

The Chosen Makes You Think

So this past week I finally sat down and watched The Chosen. My husband and I and some of our kids watched it over the course of a few days. It has been awhile since we had a series to watch together. Again, I have pretty high standards. I don’t tolerate much swearing and immorality even though the story “is so good”.

I’d seen this series advertised and I didn’t give it really a second thought. Then I saw a gal I follow on Instagram saying she finally gave it a good try and got hooked and binge watched it multiple times. Okay I thought, I’ll give it a shot. I downloaded the app and started to watch it. I got maybe halfway through the first episode and I was hooked.

It was so good!

Do I think that it is 100% accurate? No. But what I do think is that it is good.

For I remember the word of God which saith by their works ye shall know them; for if their works be good, then they are good also.

Moroni 7:5

I was praying and wondering if it was a good thing and the answer I got was “If it brings you to Christ it is a good thing.” Good enough for me.

I am excited for Season 2. The first one made me cry, made me laugh, and made me feel more of a longing to have more of a relationship with my Savior. He is my elder brother. The Chosen I don’t think took away from the deity of Christ, but rather showed him in more of a 3D perspective. It reminded me that He knows me and loves me and understands what it is like to go through mortality.

So this weekend if you have some time and even if you think you don’t, you should give the show a chance.

Daily Life

There is Peace

I don’t think I wrote about this so I will try again.

I had been struggling. I could see myself getting off track. Nothing major but I could feel myself distancing myself from God. I don’t know why exactly. I was being a stubborn and petulant child. I wasn’t enjoying the feeling of it either but my stubborn pride would not let me fix it. I told myself “not now, I’m not ready” which is a very sad mindset. But just like when my children are upset and refuse to be comforted I patiently wait until they are ready. I am sure that my Heavenly Father does the same. How hard it must be for Him to patiently wait for so many of His children who refuse to be comforted to finally- hopefully- come to Him.

I finally am coming back around. It has been four months since we’ve been to church. Church makes it easy. You just show up and share the job of teaching each other. Sometimes you just show up and learn. But at home it is all on me and Alex to teach our children. We made it a priority to have church at home every single Sunday. It is work. It is good work, but it is work. There is no one to carry you along. No one to make sure you do it. It is all on you. It has been an opportunity to see what our priorities are and are we willing to follow Christ when no one else will see it?

Like I said, I was getting off track. I didn’t feel the spirit like I needed to because I wasn’t doing what I needed to. I started doing what I needed to. I started praying more and with more thought and sincerity. I started to study the scriptures more earnestly. I started listening to more uplifting podcasts and religious material. I got back on track and it will be a daily effort to stay there.

In the scriptures Christ commands us to pray always that we will not be tempted. He didn’t say it because it sounded like a good thing to say. He said it because it is imperative. As I follow the news daily I am astonished at how much we need the Gospel of Christ. It really is the only true anchor we have in a world of shifting values and daily changing opinions and “truth”.

It might have been easy to just float along as a Christian up until a few months ago but it feels like we are being sifted now. Where do you stand now? Are you firmly rooted in Christ or are you wish-washy, still trying to grasp the world? It has been interesting to watch these days unfold. It was prophesied that in the last days before Christ would return that men would call good evil and evil good. I never understood how it could be possible really until now. To me it feels like time is running out. Chaos seems to multiply daily and it is time to choose a side. As it says in the scriptures, “Choose you this day whom you will serve.”

I hope that things are going well for any who read this. I hope there is peace in your life. This song is so beautiful and if you have a minute or two to listen to it I highly recommend you do so.

Have a great day!

Daily Life, Sunday

Start the Week

Sunday was a good day. Very slow. Rainy.

For the kids singing time at our home church I asked them each what song they would like to sing. Noah said the sun song. I don’t know what that is so he picked another one. Elizabeth said she wanted the raspberry song. Again, I don’t know what that is. Turns out they were going by what they thought the picture was on the songbook page. No raspberries. I told her to go through the book and find it. She came across a page with palm leaves on it. I told her the song was called Hosana. Oh, she said then proceeded to sing, “Hosana ooh na-na.” Um no. That is not how the song in the book goes. I got a chortle out of that and corrected her. The other song says Havana, not Hosana. Hopefully we cleared that up.

Around dinner time I didn’t want to cook. The kids said they wanted donuts. I said if they made them then they could have donuts for dinner. Everyone ran upstairs as fast as they could. I believe they all helped Alex and only one bowl was broken. I found remnants when I cleaned on Monday.

Benjamin wanted to make the frosting/ glaze for the donuts. I told him butter and sugar milk and vanilla. I didn’t specify powdered sugar because I thought it was obvious. It wasn’t to him and the regular sugar didn’t work. After the failed batch he asked what kind of sugar to use. The second batch was good. Alex said he saw him using the wrong sugar but figured it was an easy lesson for Benjamin. Benjamin asked why Alex didn’t stop him. I asked if he would make that mistake again. He said no. Okay, lesson learned. And the donuts were good.

Monday wore me out. With the appraisal looming over my head I need the whole house decluttered and cleaned. I cleaned the whole day. Bedrooms dusted, vacuumed. Bathrooms cleaned. Laundry room cleaned. Laundry washed and put away. Front room cleaned. All the upstairs vacuumed and mopped. The basement cleaned. All the dishes found scattered throughout the house washed. All that’s left is the kids bedrooms and the garage. And the basement bathroom. I don’t want to do that one, it is gross – five boys use it. But I’ll do it anyways. If I could I would ban my kids from the house. I’d set a tent up in the backyard and have them camp out there for an extended period of time to save the house. I won’t but it is a nice thought.

Once the cleaning is “done” (is it ever done?) I need to mud and texture the girls’ bedroom ceiling then paint it and the walls. I haven’t moved the little girls into the room yet because I want to get that done first so I am not dodging furniture when I mud. It is just easier that way.

Last night Alex should have been mudding the drywall on the new closet he build but he spent hours finalizing drafting of the renovation plans. He loves drafting. We made sure the measurements were correct and moved a couple things that we’d wanted to change, added a few more lights, etc. The good thing about being able to redo a house is that we’ve lived here for eight years and know how we’d make the space work better. A good thing about taking our time is we’ve been able to think and rethink what we thought we wanted and try and improve it. Things that have bugged us we can change. Things that we have always wanted we can add. I am looking forward to ripping the whole thing out but not necessarily putting it back together. It will be worth it. I hope.

Alex did stop working on it long enough to join us for scriptures and prayer. It was fun because the story we were on is an exciting one and Michael was practically on the edge of his seat. He loved it and said, “Ammon is awesome!” I have to agree.

Well, I need to start the day. It is the last day of June. I’ve got lots to do including fortifying myself for July because if it follows the first half of the year we need all the help we can get. Can we just pretend that 2020 is over? Just me?

Daily Life

Weekend Ramblings

The weekend started out with busy waiting. In order to save gas money I took Alex to work. We drove the 45 minutes to get him there at 7 a.m. He was off to work whilst I had errands to prepare for. Grocery shopping for two weeks worth of food so I don’t have to go out again anytime soon. I sat in the car in a parking lot and planned the menu while I waited for the stores to open. Sam’s Club opened at 9 so I had two hours to wait. I planned all the meals (tedious- but since they are written in my planner maybe I’ll be smart and reuse them at a later date), I planned the day out, read my scriptures and then called my sister to talk for awhile. I’d left all the kids home with my oldest babysitting. I love having a built in babysitter.

I decided to go to Hobby Lobby first because I needed a couple decorative storage boxes. I walked up and down every single aisle (love that they are open again!) and they didn’t have what I was looking for. But I did find a few things I love and couldn’t resist buying. Then I thought I would check out Tjmaxx and see if they had what I was looking for. Waste of time. It is sad to see a store so empty. The shelves were mostly empty. There were just a few knick-kacks. Hopefully things get back to normal soon.

I finally got to Sam’s and managed to get through in less than an hour. They even had toilet paper stacked super high. And there were no limits on items like the were last time I went.

I picked Alex up and we went and had lunch. There is an Indian restaurant we’d been wanting to go to for years so we had lunch there. This particular restaurant has two locations one was where we were and the other is in our old college town and is connected to a gas station. In spite of the location, it has really good food. The last time we’d gone I was two days away from having my fourth baby and barely fit in the booth- like I had to squeeze myself into the booth and I was pinned between the table and chair back. It was ridiculous but made it memorable. The new coronavirus measures put in place made for an interesting meal but the food was good. What is interesting about Indian cuisine is how it resembles Guatemalan food in flavor. Alex said the flavors are reminiscent of each other because they use a lot of the same ingredients.

Our plan after eating was to go get some new shoes for both of us. We’d worn ours out. I found a new pair of workout shoes and Alex found some comfortable ones for work.

Shopping days aren’t my favorite. It takes so much time. Planning, driving, shopping, driving, and putting it away. Luckily the kids can help with putting it away. I don’t think they mind so much because then they see what I got and can see what they get to eat. They eat so much!

Later I did give two of the boys haircuts and Alex as well. They all needed it. I like when its warm outside so I can cut their hair outside and keep the hair mess outside. Cutting hair is low on my list of things I like to do. Actually it is not even on my list of things I like to do. But when I can save a bunch of money then I’ll do it. Then I can go pay someone to cut my hair soon. It is down below my waist and it is getting a bit out of control. I just don’t know what to do with it.

A storm came blowing in on Saturday afternoon and Alex and I went outside in the windstorm for fun to watch it. The actual rain was just blowing by about a mile to the east so we enjoyed seeing the clouds speed by. The wind gusts would come in waves and I could hear it coming as it whipped through the trees with a low, loud whoosh!

Sunday we had church at home and probably will for a while yet. I can’t see us being able to keep masks on all the kids at church. We’ll see. The lesson I gave was on making good choices and being kind. We had singing time and it was so fun. We went through some longer songs with 7-8 verses and sang them at different speeds. The kids loved it.

Since it was a chilly and rainy afternoon we worked on a puzzle I had been saving. It was an Eric Dowdle puzzle of Old Nauvoo. Alex and I were married in the Nauvoo Temple so it was a fun reminiscent puzzle to do. It was 500 pieces and I’m surprised we got it done in just a couple hours and one sitting.

Before bed we watched a scripture video about what we’ll be studying this coming week. I love all the stories but this is a particularly good one. The kids all sat and watched it and we discussed some of the doctrine if talked about.

Right before it got dark I checked the weather. That storm Alex and I watched, that was a cold front coming in. Snow was forecast for the next morning. Yep. Snow. In June. Alex and I went out and covered the cold sensitive plants- tomatoes and squash. The weather wasn’t supposed to freeze but we covered them just in case. We didn’t want to lose the months of work and have to buy big plants. This is the first year we’ve grown the whole garden from seed rather than get the plants from the store. It’s looking good. We have tons of tomatoes, squash, carrots, cabbage, onions, strawberries, raspberries, and radishes. So many radishes. Alex pickled radishes last week and we have so many more. We have 13 tomato plants. If all goes well, I’ll be super busy canning tomato sauce this fall.

That was the weekend. Just kind of a chill weekend which I am totally okay with.

Daily Life

Power Outage

I sat in the basement listening to my oldest son try to play catch up with his band homework from the last two months. Hard lesson to learn. But it is something that I have been learning. Keeping up is easier than catching up and life is really just work. The piper will be paid at some point.

I was weeding the other night and i was thinking that life is work. You can’t really cheat. You can’t really take the easy way because you miss out when you go that route. You really just cheat yourself.

The boys got all their work done and passed their classes. One subject with one child left.

Wednesday morning I got up and the forecast was raining. It wasn’t dumping rain, it is Idaho and it never really does and only for a few minutes. It was dry enough so I was up and at ’em. It started to sprinkle as I walked and the sun peeked through the clouds. A rainbow before 7 a.m. it was a good start to the day.

I thought my washer was level but it wasn’t. One sure way to ruin a washing machine is for it to not be level. Ugh. I had Alex help me before he left for work. The front couldn’t go any different so I had to fix the back. Alex had to go and I was left to figure it out. I pulled the washer out and found out that the rear legs are stationary. I had to problem solve. This all happened before my walk. I needed the walk for time to figure this problem out.

This is what the floor looked like under the washer. Its messed up, right?! (Sorry for the blurry picture.)

I did my workout and then got on my knees and prayed for help to know the best way to fix the problem. I figured that since I am going to be gutting the whole thing anyways I might as well start by ripping out the section under the washer. The exact tools came to mind and how to do the whole thing. I got up and went to the garage to look for the crowbar. The tools are usually not where they should be. I looked for a minute and then called Alex. Before he could answer I saw the crowbar across the garage. It took me maybe 15 minutes to get the floor out and the thing leveled. Talk about prayers answered. I have about 10 more loads of laundry to do so I am glad it didn’t take long to fix.

The gas lines are being replaced or fixed or something in my neighborhood and so there has been construction going on. All day it was rumbling and loud truck and backhoe noise. It will continue as they do the road in front of our house. They were working on the side one first.

It was a chilly rainy day. I’m not a fan of the cold but it was pretty.

While I was putting the little kids down for a nap the power went out. I found out because the kids emerged out of the basement. Cloudy rainy days make the basement really dark with no power. The power was scheduled to come on at 5. Okay, 2 more hours to go. The kids were bored because it was cold and rainy so they were stuck inside. I said cleaning is a good cure but they wanted nothing to do with that. I cleaned the best I could without power. Washed dishes by hand, washed some walls, cleaned up the “classroom” since we didn’t need it for at least 3 more months, cleaned the little boys cave dump bedroom, and then we went to the store to find food for dinner and to get out of the house. Taco salad was on the menu.

We got home and I checked the power status. Not scheduled to come on until 8. What?! Ugh. Fine. Alex said to ser up the gas camping stove to cook the meat. I did. He cooked the beef in the garage when he got home. We ate and then had ice cream cones. I looked at the status again. No power until 10 p.m. No!!! My phone was dead, all the flashlights are in the 72-hour kits and I wasn’t willing to drag them out. So we read scriptures in the fading light, the kids built a blanket fort and we all went to bed with the sun. I got 9 hours of sleep. It was wonderful. In total the power was out for over 8 hours.

It was comical yet sad that the kids were so bored. I had to explain that electricity is a very modern invention and that people before it managed to survive. I am not bothered too much when the power goes out. Just an inconvenience. I am glad for it sometimes because gives us a chance to see where we could improve. I do love having electricity though. It makes everything so much easier.

So that was the last couple days. Power is back on and I have the laundry from yesterday to catch up on as well as a huge stack of dishes. Schoolwork and who knows what else awaits me today.

Sunday, Uncategorized

It was a Good Sunday

Sunday was a good day. I got up and went for a walk. I only did a half mile but it was Sunday and I needed rest. I only walked for the length of one conference talk. It was a good one- they all are.

You will one day stand aside and look at your difficult times, and you will realize that [Christ] was always there beside you.

-President Thomas Monson

It is true. I’ve seen it in my life.

We did church at home and Evangeline was fussy as usual. Every week she picks church time to be tired. Her normal nap time is two hours later but apparently not on Sunday. So Alex went and put her in her bed while I did singing time with the kids. He was back in less than 5 minutes. She must have been really tired.

For church Alex talked about not just hearing the word, the gospel, but internalizing it and doing it. With the little kids we discussed baptism. Lauren and Sam talked about what they remember about their baptism and Alex and I said what we remember about ours. Gideon is looking forward to his this December when he turns eight.

With the older two boys we talked about the plan of happiness. Our Heavenly Father’s plan of happiness. We went over a few things, they had a couple questions, but it all boiled down to making good choices, being kind and serving those around us- including our family.

Alex’s sister had a few questions about gardening so we decided to go see her and help her out with a few pointers. She has never gardened before and so it will be an experience for her family. Gardens are hard to mess up for the most part. Pulling the plant out when weeding or forgetting to water is about the only way to really mess it up. As long as the plants don’t freeze, they get watered and get some fertilizer (over fertilizing is not good either) they can do their thing. It really is fun. To me at least. I love watching it all grow.

Speaking of gardening, one of our apple trees only had 9 apples last year. This year it has at least 100 blossoms on it. Our plum tree only had 6 plums last year and this year has at least 100 blossoms. It should be a good crop. The apple tree isn’t big enough to hold all the apples that will grow so we’ll have to play it by ear and see what we canet grow. But we’ll have our own apes this year!

Growing up my mom planted peach trees in our backyard. We bottled 90 quarts of peaches one year. A lot of work but so good for a dinner of toast and peaches in the winter. The 90 quarts was just what we canned. We would go out and eat peaches off the tree until we were ready to burst. And the peaches and ice cream! My favorite. I guess I better move back to Utah so I can grow peaches. That is the only thing about living where I do that I don’t like. All the peaches have to be shipped in and they aren’t nearly as good. Nothing beats the taste of fresh off the tree.

Now that I am hungry for peaches, the rest of the day was good. After lunch we sat out on the front steps and enjoyed the sunshine. The kids blew bubbles and that morphed into them playing with the hose and getting wet. It was Evangeline’s first time playing in the hose since it was finally warm enough. She loved it .

For scripture time before bed we watched a video and the kids loved it. They wanted to watch it over and over. I told them how to find it on YouTube. It is called “The Goal: A Story of Faith, Friendship and Forgiveness “. It is super cute and has such a relatable and good message. We had read the scripture it was about with the kids earlier during church and it was great that the video applied it in a way the kids could understand it better.

That was Sunday.

Daily Life

Over the Weekend

Friday

I had planned on having the kids help me with cleaning the whole house and the garage too. It was too much to ask apparently. I tried to get to it all but settled for just the main areas. We didn’t even get to the garage. I have finally learned what Alex has tod me all along- if the adults clean the kids won’t. If I am focused on cleaning then the kids will filter out of the area. I call them back about ten times. I finally just gave up.

My oven parts came though and we were able to fix it and get it working again. Yay! But by the time dinner time hit I had no energy to do anything. We had joined in the worldwide fast and it was a good experience but it left me physically depleted.

Alex had been planning on putting in the garden. I hope his efforts weren’t in vain because the forecast was calling for cold and it delivered it on Sunday. He said it would be fine because the seeds wouldn’t be coming up that fast. We’ll see.

That night we watched the movie Signs. It was fun. I was screaming at the startling parts and it made the kids jump. Some of the kids loved it and others were traumatized. Just kidding. They were all fine. There were no nightmares and they all went to bed just fine.

They were fine because we decorated Easter eggs and it took their minds off it. We decorated 60 eggs. It was fun. Nothing fancy, just the smelly vinegar dye but they were pretty.

Then we tried to get the kids to bed but it took awhile. I needed them asleep so the Easter Bunny wouldn’t have to get up early. The four older ones helped me which is great because they love doing it and I only have to do a fraction of the work.

Alex and I stayed up to finish a movie since all the kids were finally asleep.

Saturday

We slept in a decent amount. It was a late night but the kids all slept past 8 a.m. We do our “fun” Easter stuff on Saturday so as to preserve the sacredness of the real meaning of Easter for Sunday.

The older kids had hidden the candy filled plastic eggs all over the basement. It was a candy gorging kind of morning. There was bubbles and sidewalk chalk and the kids grabbed them and headed outside. It was all fun while it lasted.

Today I was determined to get the garage cleaned out though and nothing was going to stop me. It was supposed to rain so we had incentive to get moving. And we did it! We got all the stuff moved out, swept, and moved back in. It went faster than it normally does. I even got all the coats and winter stuff stored away. Its mid April. If it gets cold again they can use jackets or just stay in. They are kids, they won’t.

The wind hit that afternoon and the kids had a blast. They said the were going sailing. They used anything they could find that would catch the wind and pull them across the yard. It was fun to watch. Evangeline and I stood on the porch and she just laughed at the kids the whole time.

Michael and I made pizza together for dinner. It was fun. And work. The whole day was work but Michael was awesome about it and helped me the whole day without complaining. That’s the best part of kids growing up, they start to get helpful.

Easter Sunday

We got up and everyone ate cereal and got dressed in their Sunday clothes. Right before we started church (at home) I decided it would be the best time for family pictures. It was freezing and windy outside (deceptively so because it was gorgeous and sunny) so we took pictures on the couch. So many pictures trying to get it right. Dogs and babies are hard to take family pictures with. Whatever we got will be good enough.

We had Sacrament meeting and then we did primary with the kids. Primary and singing time is a bit like herding cats. Oh well.

After that we had class with the older three kids. We read a scripture (2 Nephi 9:7-15) and initially we were having the lesson/discussion go one way but what I love about having church at home is we can go in the direction that the kids need. They had some questions about what we read and so we spent the time explaining and answering their questions.

For dinner we had the obligatory ham, au gratin potatoes and veggies. I made two kinds of rolls, as per the kids request. They wanted to try the empty tomb rolls. You put a marshmallow in the dough, cover it up and bake it. The point is thatttttte marshmallows melt and leave an empty “tomb”. Yeah, they did that but the marshmallow melts into this weird gelatinous clear yellow goo and it doesn’t look good nor does it taste great. We won’t be doing that again.

My sister did send an Easter egg lesson and that was cute. In each egg is a scripture and a little symbol that goes along with it. It was a nice activity to help focus on the Savior.

That afternoon I pulled out the puzzle we’d started Thanksgiving of 2018. It is a bit much to have 9 people working on one puzzle but it was fun and eventually people wandered off. When we needed the table for dinner we put the puzzle in an empty room. The kids would wander in and work on it.

It was a good weekend.

Daily Life

Grand Plans

I had such grand plans for today. I made my list and it was long and lofty. I got three things I planned on doing done. I started the laundry and then went to the front room to study the scriptures. As I sat there I started smelling something burning. That seems to be the theme this year- so many things burning; luckily the angels are showing me all the fires so I can put them out in time. My heart started racing, as it usually does when I smell smoke, and I started going through the house following my nose. There was nothing in the basement (I initially thought of the heater since I’d been sitting by a vent). I ran upstairs and went to the kitchen. Nothing was cooking so I hurried to the washer and it happened again! I took the front panel off, got on the ground with my phone flashlight on and took a look. Burned up belt. Again!

I thought about the options and decided to call a repair man. When he called me back and after I’d explained it all he said the bearings had locked up. It was a $400 repair. At least. Not worth fixing a 15 year old machine for that. I’d have to get a new one. Ugh. Darn it.

I spent a good chunk of the day doing research. It is not a cheap appliance. The reviews were not helpful. I eventually decided to stick with what I knew and got the newer model of my old one. I figure that with as many miles and moves and loads of laundry that thing did for 15 years and never once needed a repair, it is a good choice. Too bad that the price doubled in 15 years. This new one better give me all its got for just as long or longer. Luckily the furniture stores are all still open and they will deliver it on Thursday morning.

I did manage to get some other stuff done. I nagged and prodded some of the kids to get their school work done. It only took 30 minutes of pleading to get 3 minutes of work done. Ridiculous.

So, I thought I’d mention the chicks. I have been making the kids take care of them. I haven’t seen them in about a week or so. Lauren checked on them and said they were huge! Not possible, I told her. I went to check. Yes, it is totally possible. They had doubled in size! I’ll post pictures tomorrow when I’ve taken them outside for some grass time and get their bin cleaned out.

Tonight Evangeline decided that she would try to go to the basement by herself. She’s never gone down the stairs, she was always scared. She managed all but the last three or so. Poor thing tumbled down the rest of them. She got a small bruise on her cheek. But it was progress and she can only get better.

By the way, Evangeline has been weaned for about two weeks now. The little baby who was the lightest sleeper in the whole world, the baby who would wake up if you moved a single muscle, who would wake up if you attempted to put her down, that baby- she is now my best sleeper. She falls asleep in seconds and sleeps all night long. At naptime she let’s me know she’s tired, we go to the bed, she pulls her blanket on herself and she’s out. What in the world, right?! She’s the last person I would ever thought would do that. I won’t complain though because an entire night’s sleep has been 15 years in coming. I’ll get it while I can. So goodnight.

Uncategorized

Parenting and Trying to Get on a Plan

The last couple days have been an interesting shift. Benjamin has somewhat of a mercurial nature. Somewhat, who am I kidding- he is very mercurial. I’m guessing part of it has to do with being on the autism spectrum. What does that even mean? He is just him and just like everyone does life the best he can.At scripture time every night he is a reluctant participant. The last few days though he asks if he can read the whole chapter where normally we have to beg and threaten (with stuff like no video games). He’s been asking to spend time with me- he made cookies the other night and wanted me to stay in the kitchen with him because he didn’t want to cook alone. Boy I know how that feels.He came home from school the other day and I asked how the day went. “They had an assembly. What a waste of my time.” Welcome to school buddy. I think he’s more like me than either of us will admit.I look at my kids and they are all so different. None of them are a carbon copy of me or Alex but they all have a collection of traits and character quirks that are like us. Benjamin gets his eye-rolling impatience from me but I’m better at hiding it. Lauren gets her emotional mess from me but amplified and I’ve learned to control it better. They all get their artistic abilities from both Alex and I. I could go on and on but I’ll spare you.I have to remember when I deal with my children that they are just beginning. They haven’t been tempered by time and experience. I expect them to be able to deal with situations the way someone would who has had experience but they aren’t capable of that yet.Those were my thoughts this morning. I managed to sleep in and have a lazy-ish morning.We got up eventually and after getting ready for the day we made “breakfast”. It was eleven by the time we sat down to eat. Eggs, bacon, and pancakes. Something for everyone. Lauren picked the bacon ot off her eggs (what’s wrong with her!) And Elizabeth was so busy eating pranks she didn’t get any eggs. I told her I’d make her one. I turned the stove on and turned around and she had disappeared. I didn’t make an egg for her because she forgot about it. Alex and I left to go grocery shopping and I remembered that it was Saturday. Saturday at Walmart is madness! We survived and got more than we should have but it will all get eaten. It always does.It felt so warm outside today. We could almost imagine spring. It was 38°. Heat wave! The snow was melting so I took the opportunity to shovel the remaining chunks and tracks of snow off the driveway. I roped the boys into it and Edgar pitched in as well. Its supposed to snow several inches tomorrow (we’ll see about that) so the driveway is ready to be shoveled, again.I spent the rest of the day reading, cleaning, and taking care of baby.(Here she is reading while I type this.)I also bought a new dot journal notebook for this year’s planner and I spend an inordinate amount of time drawing out what I hope will work. If I can get it functioning the way I want then I’ll have Alex help me make it on the computer and then I can get it printed so I won’t have to draw it anymore. But the drawing is pretty relaxing. I listened to some information on the chapters of scripture I studied this week as I was drawing the planner and supervising the kids as they got cleaned up for the night. Multitasking folks. Actually, I was tired of everything else and the thought of actively watching the kids just sounded so boring. I had to do something else. They had fun doing what kids do so it was a win win.Now I’m exhausted and can hardly keep my eyes open and I’ve got to get up early. So goodnight.

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Early Bedtime

Last night I had to laugh. I was tucking two kids in in different rooms and they were both crying. Why?! The reason? Their dad told them to go to bed and they wanted to keep reading their scriptures. They were trying to finish one of the books and they only had half a chapter left. Seriously. I told them to go ahead and finish. It is really a good problem to have- kids wanting to stay up and read scriptures. They are better than me.

This morning I was quite productive. Which is good since I have days of unproductivity to make up for. Easy enough to do when you wake up at 4:30. The snow plow woke me up.

Also, this morning Evangeline woke up bright eyed and ready to go. No more fever. I was so happy! I gave the stinky little girl a bath and she was off and running. Benjamin still had a fever but was good by evening.

I did manage to get all the laundry washed and put away today and I am proud to say that I even ironed all of Alex’s work shirts. Gone are the days of construction and ripped jeans and worn ot tshirts. I wouldn’t trade them- ever- even if it does mean ironing. I did make the big boys do their own laundry. It is good for them. And me.

In my productive morning along with laundry, I made bread because I figured the kids would eat it after school. They didn’t! Just as well because now we can make French toast for breakfast.

I am back on my sugar free “diet” so I only ate two bites of the bread I made. The first bit of the lifestyle change is so hard. Sugar is soooooo addictive. I did good today though. All the food I had though was so good and I only had a small sugar craving after lunch. For breakfast it was eggs and bacon. I ate a salmon burger with avocado and bacon for lunch. Dinner was squash with butter and 1 1/2 hot dogs (no buns). Snacking was cashews to hold off any desire to binge. And I almost got my gallon of water down. I was about 3 cups short. Wish me luck tomorrow.

So we have a bunch of snow here. We’ve had worse years, but I went out to feed the chickens and was walking at least a foot off the ground on top of the snow. It’s a weird feeling. Even weirder when one foot sinks and your shoe is all wet and cold.

Tonight dinner took longer to bake than I thought but I’d called the kids to the table already. We sat and talked for 10 minutes waiting for the food. It was fun and I should do that more often.

I also totally misread the clock. With the night’s dark all the time I get confused. So we read scriptures and had prayer way earlier than usual. Yay for earlier bedtime!

This little girl decided to fake us out and get in her crib. Then afterwards climbed all over my face. Progress is progress.