Sunday, December 27, 2009

Guess What?

Lyndon and I are thrilled and happy to announce that baby number six will be joining our family this summer! Before anyone else can ask first let me say that "yes we do know how babies are made" and "no we are not single handedly trying to populate the earth." We do however feel honored to be making a significant contribution! Some of my dear friends need to forgive me for not calling and telling them the happy news...this is all I feel good enough to do. We had this whole big plan to wait a long time to share, but while my family was here for Christmas Eve I had every one worried that I was angry with them so we told Jamen and let him shout out "we are getting a new family member!" to add to the festivities. It's much easier to have it out so that my kids know why mom is in her pajamas for a year and me passing it off as a cold wasn't working out so well.

With that said let me tell you how it is. I have five sons, 2 dogs, and 9 chickens. I adopted a child from Haiti, trained for and ran a marathon for fun, chose to have my kids home with me to educate them, had my tonsils out in my 30's and spent 2 weeks in a hospital with a tube in my throat....all of that is a cake walk in the park for me compared to being pregnant. I get so sick that my body naturally conforms to the fetal position and I have picked out hundreds of different pictures in my slate on my bathroom floor since I spend the majority of my life laying on it.

My husband does everything and I just watch. It is the only weight loss plan that works for me and my kids spend like 15 hours a day in front of technology of some kind (which I hate). With all of that said, we have been here before and we will live through it again. It would be highly ungrateful of me not to see the blessing in this. As I really get a chance to see my children when I am pregnant, since I can't do anything else, I know that they are worth it. I also know that I would go through anything to have them here...debilitating morning sickness, heartache waiting for them to come home from a fourth world country orphanage, anything....So "Yeah" for the Friant family. In the meantime I will be daily praying for the strength to endure my blessings!

As an after thought...the boys took bets on what they think the baby will be. 2 boys said boy, 2 boys said girl and one boy said chicken....I hope it's not a chicken!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What I Wanted to Say...

We all have those conversations that after they are over we know what we would have said, but looking back know that it didn't go that way. This happened to me yesterday and though I won't be getting a do-over with the person I spoke to I still have to say it...Lucky you! An aquaintance called me yesterday to chat about home schooling. She had just recently made the plunge and she was frustrated, wondering how I manage to work out or shower, and obviously rather deflated with something that she had started out so happy to try. I bumbled around trying to explain how I make it work while folding laundry with one hand and checking Jamen's math page with the other...but as it came to an end I could tell that I hadn't helped her at all.
So this is what I wanted to say.
-I think the greatest discouragement is thinking that we need to mimic public school. If that is what we wanted for that child then they should go there.
-Time and season applies to learning for kids as well. If you are trying and trying and they are crying and crying two thoughts come to mind #1 they are not ready and #2 maybe your not going about it right for that child.
-I think the most important thing we can have whether we home school or not to help our kids is an atmosphere conducive to learning. I am only beginning to understand this, but a couple of things that work around here are #1 Limited time in front of the TV or computer #2 Books, books, books...they are everywhere around here. You sit on them, look at them and stumble over them-the kids can't help but pick them up! #3 Be an example! Don't give up learning because you are to busy teaching! How can a child get enthusiastic about learning when the person teaching them isn't?
-Most of all trust the Lord and listen to your heart. I find the times I get stressed out about having two of my kids (for now) homeschooling is when I listen to others usually cryptic remarks about it. When I am watching my kids and listening to the Lord there is peace. The Lord knew when he asked me to do this that I had a lot of laundry, cooking and a two year old to manage. He still asked me to do it.
-Enjoy being with your kids! It goes so fast. It will matter more that you taught them about right and wrong and helped them know that you love them to pieces than whether or not they did 20 pages of math worksheets in a day.
So that's what I wanted to say, but the truth is she really didn't want to hear it. I had to laugh because I felt exactly the same way when I started. I would talk to my home school friends and want them to tell me the "trick" the "magic pill" that would make the day go right. They never told me and they would smile and say things like, "oh it all works out." As our conversation came to a close I found myself smiling and saying the same basic thing!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Things I Could do Without

Today has me thinking about the things I could do without and I thought I would share with you.
They are in no particular order, some of them are totally dumb and some are not at all.
-Corruption in the world that causes broken hearts to people that I love.
-Winter so cold that it makes me cry at the thought of going outside.
-Poor health for darling older people like my poor grandpa.
-Potty training. I would like some kind of computer chip to insert into my two year old that does it for me.
-Boys that can't go outside because it is to cold and so stay in the house making giant messes, fighting and whining.
-Noise. I wish my children came with a remote control so I could turn them down. Right now I would push mute on Grayson's remote because the crying is really loud.
-Backtalking. I mean really shouldn't what I say go?
-Lyndon working. Now I am not saying I don't appreciate the income, it would be pretty rough being homeless, but couldn't he just get paid to be home and keep me warm all day?
So here are a few of the things I could do without today. While reading Henry B. Eyering's talk at the Relief Society meeting today I read something that struck me as profound and applicable for me. Speaking of past relief society sisters he said, "Their determination born of faith to serve the Lord and others seemed to take them not around the storms of life but directly into them." It would be nice to never worry, never be inconvenienced and to pee without an audience. But, that's not why I am here. Loving people and being responsible for them will mean worry, tough days and trial, but I am trying to feel that determination born of faith and hope that I am getting it right at least some of the time...What could you do without today?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Truth About Big Families

When I was growing up I admired big families. I had one sister and that's all, not exactly a big family. But, I thought those big families must have it figured out. Jen and I fought constantly and it wasn't until I moved out of the house and we had our first babies within 3 days of each other that she became an indispensable friend to me. I digress, it seemed like those families got along all of the time. I pictured them surrounding a huge table sharing a meal and sharing their day and I thought it seemed pretty special. I also figured it would be hard work, so I didn't necessarily plan on a big family, just sort of admired them from afar. But, the Lord had it in mind for me to have a huge, noisy, messy family and because of that now I know the truth! The truth is:
#1 A family outing is always accompanied by noise, fighting and disagreements. We just went on the mountain to get a tree and I heard things like, "it's squishy in here, I can't breathe, this is stupid, I don't want to go." Lyndon and I snapped, "well, we are going so deal with it."
#2 Sitting around a table is not usually a warm fuzzy thing, but more like a war zone in which you a. hope you have something to eat when they finish and b. consider the meal a success with only two spills.
#3 There is never enough time to feel like you meet their needs. You notice that baby's toe nails are so long they curl, you realize your 6 year old still can't ride a bike, you see that your 11 year old is only about 1/2 inch shorter than you and you are sure the last time you checked it was at least a couple of inches and you realize that your kids are often living in squalor and you promised your kids would never live that way.
The list could go on and on sharing the "truth" about big families. But, may I end on this note...While I watched my husband grabbing each of my kids today and dipping their heads in the snow, them giggling so hard they could hardly breathe I knew that this is what it is all about. I wouldn't trade it for a quiet family with perfectly trimmed toe nails. The truth about big families is that they are awesome and I am grateful the Lord had it in store for me to have one....

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Terribly Two

Micah is two and the truth is about a week ago he woke up terrible. Here are the top five reasons I have decided not to sale him on EBAY.
#5 He is an absolute midget, he is so short that his bum nearly grazes the ground while walking, this makes him travel size for my convenience.
#4 He is in no way potty trained but will pee on the potty just before he gets in the tub. This makes him so happy that he goes running through the house naked looking for the parent who wasn't with him so that he can yell, "pee" and get a high five. It's funny as heck.
#3 He loves to pretend to eat my face and yells, "yummy, yummy, yummy" while doing so. It tickles and who doesn't like being told they are yummy?
#2 He has great taste in people. He WORSHIPS my husband and becomes angry, followed by moody and then depressed when he leaves. I go through the same things when he leaves.
#1 You just never know when you will need to know if there is a chicken within a 100 mile radius and he can spot them every time. He also doesn't leave you wondering because he will yell "chicken bok, bok" over and over until you acknowledge said chicken with the same amount of enthusiasm.
So, as of today he is not being put up for bid on EBAY, but just in case I change my mind how much do you think a chicken loving, midget two year old would go for?

Monday, November 9, 2009

I Learned My Lesson...Until Next Time

I can't tell you how I looked forward to this past week. I already mentioned the 15 hours that I had planned to spend with hubby, but there was even more. I got to have lunch with my college roomies. These are some of my favorite people on the planet. We can go months without seeing each other and sort of start out where we left off. I could never tire of visiting with them. There are four of us and a total (for now) of 17 children! We share each other's joys and struggles, it was a blast. So then I headed to the hotel to meet Lyndon for our magical 15 hours. I thought I would start with a little workout. I was feeling a little yucky, but by the end I was wheezing like a first time runner after a mile...Decided to ignore it and got ready for our date. I was feeling a little crummy through the dinner, but still ignoring...Heck, I was on a date for Pete's sake. I was bursting with pride to be sitting with my cute husband who was nominated as engineer of the year for the state of Utah. He didn't win (thank goodness for him, he hates recognition), but I am well aware that he should have! After the dinner we went to a movie, I spent the whole time trying not to cough and having some guy look at me like I was personally coughing in his popcorn...after it was over I could neither talk nor breathe...Lyndon gave me some Nyquil, we slept a few hours and then hurried home because Grayson (who wasn't sick when I left him) was now running a fever of 103...
The next morning, after missing my nephew's baptism because we had to leave mid warm fuzzy talk because of one sick mommy and three sick babies I was feeling much better. Lyndon assured me he could handle the sickies and encouraged me to keep my plans to go to St. George for the weekend. Long story short-I ended up in the St Goerge ER in the middle of the night (Nicole, I am so, so, so sorry) with pneumonia. So after totally germing up my friend and her family I made it home Sunday sick with a house full of sick people. Lyndon took Gray to the ER as soon as I got home---he has a nasty case of the croupe. Kyle sounds like a seal with a cold, Gray is pretty near comatose and I feel awful. The Moral of the Story: This mom should NEVER leave the house without her children. I think I have learned my lesson...

Sunday, November 1, 2009


Today is Sunday and the truth is I am bored. I can't believe I just said that, that never happens to me. See Lyndon is at church with 3 of my 5 sons (truth told he has the noisy ones) and I am home with 2 who are to sick to do anything more than wander, watch TV, or sit in a state of lethargy. The lethargy is rubbing off on me. Since the new me is making peace with not getting it all done instead of making productive "to do" lists for the week I am pouting about the next 72 hours that my husband won't be home...Let it be clear and out in the open that I am thrilled for hubby. He is going to Colorado to go hunting with his best friend. Let's face it that man has to make do with "fun" being things like tilling horse poop into the garden on most days, of course since he is him he gets all excited about that too...but, anywho this time he gets to do something that really does qualify as fun to men who like to hunt. The good news is at the end of the 72 hours I get to meet him in Salt Lake for about 15 hours of just him and me...sigh...Doesn't that sound fabulous? It's that time of year again when Engineer's Conference is upon us and so we go. It's funny how as the kids have increased in number the days we stay together lessens and now we are down to a measly 15 hours...Oh well, I will take whatever I can get. As for the next three days, I am not a teenager I am a grown up (with a whole head of gray hair to prove it). I am to old to marinate in chocolate and whine because the love of my life is not here, I will not listen to mushy music and watch chick flicks while the kids are in bed and get thrown off by noises in the night....I am a GROWN UP, never mind, where is that Halloween candy?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Archimedes was sitting in a bathtub thinking when he yelled "Eureka" and went running down the street buck naked. I was standing in my kitchen (fully dressed by the way) when the "Eureka!" moment got me. Yesterday I blabbed my sisters ear off telling her that if she loved me she would tell me the secret to getting it all done, she laughed and said, "you don't". That wasn't working for me. I always figured if you worked harder, faster and more effectively then you could accomplish all of it. So in a rare moment of solitude driving to Koosharem to see the world's cutest baby and his mama I mulled that over. Finally I just told the Lord that I just don't think I can get it all done anymore. The feeling that came to me was "then don't." So I woke up this morning fully aware that I wouldn't get it all done and I decided to be OK about that. In typical refiner fire's fashion I was tested to see if I really meant it. First off the schedule was thrown off by the little boys being home from school until the afternoon...We said fine, ate cold cereal read for an hour and made snowmen out of paper and then for real. Then, Jamen didn't want to write in his daily journal and so we said fine and let him write what turned out to be a wicked awesome story about a scary snowman that to tell you the truth scared all of us. Then, I could feel myself getting a little edgy and ready to loose it and asked Kyle to hold down the fort so I could go down and run on my treadmill...I said "the mess will hold up until you get your run in" and wouldn't you know it, it did! Then the biggie came into play. Lyndon stopped by home to start our first fire in our fireplace. Along with that came our fancy dancy smoke alarms (when one goes off they all do), ringing for 2 1/2 hours. Instead of losing it I screamed a story to Jamen (which he loved) screamed "I love you to Lyndon" instead of "this is so annoying, can't you do anything" and laughed until my belly hurt. After I began to worry about permanent hearing loss in my kids and myself we got in the car and while listening to a hillarious story drove around in a snow storm the likes of which my kids haven't seen for awhile. What is my point? My point is that things did not go well today really. At least not according to my old definition of well. The house is in shambles, we don't have every ounce of school work done, the baby was in his jammies until 2 (and snowboots and a hat), we might have permanent hearing loss, Isaac ripped a hole in his costume so big that he would have been indecent if I didn't have jammies underneath and my run stunk to tell you the truth. But I decided this morning that I already knew this day would be a "disaster" according to my usual standards and I am beginning to think that my vision of a perfect day was totally lame...So here's my "EUREKA" moment: The question to "how do I get it all done?" is "You don't". Nobody point out to me that my wise sister and my loving Heavenly Father told me that yesterday, it takes time to teach an old dog new tricks!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Village Idiot

I am in that awkward "first date" stage of living in Monroe. I am trying to make new friends and establish myself as a reliable one here. This is a tough stage to be in. Forget all of the embarassing things my kids do and say (that's a whole 12 posts all by itself), I am a bumbling idiot! So this is written in an effort to shed all my awkwardness on you and I have hopes that it will somehow "fix" me. I kick myself for going to book groups and talking too much and saying the most insensitive things. We have been having new friends over whenever we have a chance and after they leave I remember the fly strips are still dangling from the ceiling and the dumb things I said linger in my mind like a song that won't leave. I also have a tendency to handle things with sarcasm and silliness. This worked wonders as a teen because that's how my friends dealt with things. But, I am seeing that grown ups just don't seem to approach things in this way. Then there is visiting teaching. I believe this to be one of the most important things we have been asked to do. Some of my dearest friends have come from the Lord matching me up with them and I really think of it as one of his many tender mercies. But, starting from scratch is so hard! Do I take cookies or lotion? Do you want us here or are we a burden to you, how do we not be a burden but a help? Anywho, the list is long of things my mind runs over and over. I feel I should just send out a public notice "WARNING: I will offend you, but please note that I don't mean to. I want so much to be your friend and will continually say dumb things that I don't mean to say. However, if you stick it out in just a few short years (Erin how long you been hanging in there, like 15?) you will know I didn't mean it that way!" Wish me luck on this, until further notice I remain the village idiot.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Sorry, Sorry, Sorry!!!!

I am a mess...I know you know that, but I feel I need to make a list of apologies today...
I'm sorry
-to the primary president who got a call from my kids while I was in the shower who hit redial
-to Grayson's pre-school for having to wait for class pictures for him while they called me to remind me that he was supposed to be at class pictures
-to my homeschool friends who needed my help yesterday and I couldn't help because Micah had the flu
-to the eye surgeon who was coming in early just for us and we had to cancel because Isaac had spent the night in the hotel throwing up with the flu
-to my friend who had surgery and got burnt cookies because I set the timer wrong
-to Micah for dragging him all over yesterday while he was throwing up because his brothers had places to be, and to his dad who comes home to a car and car seats that need to be steam cleaned because I haven't had time
-to my best friend who I was mid conversation with yesterday and my phone died on her because I forgot to plug it in
-to my son Grayson because I was grumpy at him even though I was the one who forgot his stupid pictures
-to my husband who apologized for calling during school time and I said, "I forgive you if it's important." He's my husband for pete's sake that's important enough
There are so many more apologies I need to make, but I am letting my son cry it out in the crib (sorry Micah) because he is grumpy from having a sick day yesterday...Forget running a marathon that is child's play, this motherhood deal is the hardest thing I have ever done.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Magic Spit

Last week I get a call from Issac's sweet teacher telling me that Isaac has been sent to the principal for spitting in a boys eye. We of course were mortified and I immediately called Lyndon so that we could get on a unified discipline front. When he got home (after cleaning up buckets of rocks, scrubbing doors and writing apologies) I asked him why he did such a thing. Here is our conversation.
Mom: Were you mad at this little boy?
Isaac: No, he is my best friend.
Mom: Why in the world did you spit in his eye?
Issac: Well, I thought if I spit in his eye, I would be able to see better, kind of like magic you know.
Mom: Can't you see?
Isaac: Well, it's like (waving his hands around) and furry you know.
So though he had had his eyes tested just that week in school we decided to take him back to the eye doctor because of the "fur". While having his eyes tested they told us he was sick of the eye test and wouldn't let them cover his left eye, but he did perfect with his right so they "let him off the hook." After further testing they tell us that he has had lazy eye for years and has rendered him nearly blind in his left eye. That's why he can't read. That's why when his teachers tell him he can and he throws his pencil and says "I can't" he is right and they are wrong. His pre-school teachers told me a boy that bright was just being stubborn and that I just needed to push him harder (pretty glad I took that piece of advice and chucked it). He sees a pediatric eye surgeon tomorrow. Send a prayer for him will you?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Feel Like Giving A Future To A Child?

It's the middle of the night and I can't sleep. I am thinking about my Haitian Roots kids and I was hoping you wouldn't mind reading a post about something so dear to my heart that sometimes I can't even talk about it. Sometimes you put things out there that mean everything to you and people don't "get it" and that hurts. But, you are my friends so we're OK. You know that Haitian Roots is a non-profit group of amazing people who want to help Haitian kids get an education. Right now this group, who I am honored to be even slightly attached to is scrambling to get the last of the money we need for the first tuition payment. I am the kind of person who hates to borrow an egg, so asking you all to care about my cause is a big stretch for me. Anywho...I could post lots of gorgeous faces for you to look at, but it being the middle of the night I won't call Shannon and make her send those photos to me for you to look at. But here it is. We have lots of kids who don't have sponsors yet who are desperately waiting to go to school. If you feel so inspired there are several ways you can help out (1) Sign on to sponsor a child. The cost is $250 per year and that covers all their costs to attend school for the year. (2) Sign on to sponsor and have $22 a month taken out automatically from your acount. (3) Make a one time donation because you feel like it or you recently won the lottery (you know whichever). (4) Say a prayer for these kids and their families. Thanks for listening folks. I know we all have our "causes" and so many of you I know are doing your own brand of good in the world, but maybe some of you feel inspired to jump into my crusade and fight with me...I would be happy to have you join me. Much Love, Heather
*To Sponsor a child click on "sponsor a child" on the upper right corner of my blog
PS The photo is of Kyle with Angeline, the girl he works hard for all year to sponsor

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Summer Days

Ahhh...the days of summer. Heat, water, popsicles and kids that need naps but won't take them...I have to admit I have always been a summer hater. I love schedules and cooler weather, but this one I am starting to see the magic of summer that everyone talks about. Living in paradise helps immensely. Favorite summer things so far:
1. Micah yelling "chicken egg" all day long. We got chickens (so fun and this kid is in love)
2. Eating fresh peas from my garden
3. Sitting on the porch watching the sun over the most beautiful view there ever was
4. Learning to play tennis with hubby
5. Being with my sister and her family last weekend to see them sealed together for eternity
6. Running in the heat and being certain that I burned a few hundred thousand more calories
due to the amount of sweat
7. Watching Lyndon and Kyle perform in Field Of Stars (they were awesome!)
Things I could have done without:
1. My poor husband totaling our van
2. 7 rounds of a horrible flu in the house (or in Washington DC)
3. Popsicle goo tracked through the house, followed by muddy feet
4. Ants in the house and snakes when I run (Ewwww)
All in all I think summer is a success. We have bought enough popsicles in the last few months to fund the running of a small country. I spend half my day applying sunscreen to my red heads and being grateful I have one kid that doesn't burn thanks to adoption! I have been reading instead of making the kids do school work and I never want to stop. Summer reads I have enjoyed immensely
1. The Narnia series-read it alone or to your family, the whole thing. It rocks!
2. A Beginner's Guide To Constructing the Universe (wow, talk about seeing math in a spiritual way!)
Happy summer to all of you!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Small Town Family Goes to the Capitol

Warning: The following post sounds at times like I am a whiny baby. Note, I didn't mean to be whiny, just telling it like it was...I am aware what an awesome blessing it is that we were able to take this trip...
Hi All
We have returned from a trip to our nations capitol. We initially planned the trip for the future president. He has been so excited. I am going to give you a little list of the joys (and the not so) from our trip.
#1 We visited the Abe Lincoln memorial. I love that man, he is truly one of my great heroes. Standing at the base of that giant monument I am surprised at how quickly the tears come. Looking at it this time I was overwhelmed with the thought that he was a little boy once too and that with the help of people around him and the inner direction he felt he was able to do what he was sent here to do. This rekindled my desire to help my boys find their way in life.
#2 Nothing adds to a trip like the two boys you took getting the flu. Poor Kyle, on his first day there he threw up from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial. He wanted to risk the capitol because he didn't want to miss it. Long story short, after throwing up in many capitol trash cans we had to ditch our tour and get him back to the motel. On the way back, in the subway Jamen began throwing up....I try to comfort Kyle with the reminder that when he is president it will be a funny story that his first trip to Washington he spent most of the time throwing up in garbage cans and in the grass...It was really awful though.
#3 On the second day I stayed in bed with Jamen and watched Nick & Disney for 9 hours while he was sick and Dad and Kyle were off seeing the sights. I felt like my brain had been melted into fruit wax, but I loved snuggling my sweet sick boy (nothing slows Jamen down but illness).
#4 I haven't been a lot of places but I would like to nominate DC for the rudest people you will ever meet award! One example, Jamen was not hip with holding our hands everywhere we went and I was not hip with him running into large crowds and getting lost. Our agreement was a little rope that I planned to tie to his belt loop and mine. Now let me say I have always believed that a child on a leash is child abuse, but there have been a lot of times where I have had to do the things I swore I would never do to keep Jamen safe. He wanted me to tie it around his tummy and he could be my puppy. You never found a happier boy in your life. He was barking and laughing and really enjoying himself. Anyone could see that this was working for him. People nearly dropped their brief cases, mouths hanging open and making comments making sure I heard them. Whatever happened to disapproving of people but being to polite to say anything...At this point between the comments, the throw up, the motion sickness from the subway and the humidity I was in tears...
#5 On our last day there we were all well enough to go to Arlington Cemetery. I was so moved to see all the men and women that have died serving our country. The silence was so touching and gave you the opportunity to really see how blessed we are.
#6 We also went to Mount Vernon, which was my favorite thing. Geroge Washington is my hero and I loved seeing where he lived. I could imagine him and his wife there and really appreciated this opportunity to see where this amazing founding father lived.
#7 At the capitol our tour guide was this amazing young girl who I just couldn't help but admire. She was obviously very capable, knowledgeable and also excellent with Jamen (which is hard for most people). At the end I managed to find out that she had been homeschooled her whole life. I wanted to put her in my purse and pull her out for everyone that worries you will be a social reject if you don't go to public school!
#8 We got to meet Jason Chaffetz, which Kyle managed to appreciate though he was miserable. I have to be proud of my home state because about the only nice people we talked to while there were him and all of the sweet people working in his office!
#9 Flying home I was able to share some of what I believe with a sweet lady on the airplane. It reminds me that I can't wait to be a missionary and have the chance to share something that means everything to me.
#10 Lyndon was like a soldier the whole time. He did his job and got us to the right places safely, but hardly cracked a smile. The minute we landed in Utah he started dancing and singing along to Billy Joel with a big smile. He reminded me that if I wanted to travel maybe I should go without him and he would pay and miss me, but he was a homebody! Usually that annoys me because I always want to travel, but after this trip I think maybe I will stay home with him!
So there is a little bit from our trip. I am so happy we were able to fulfill a big wish for Kyle, so appreciative of the country I live in and so happy there are still towns population 1800 for me to live in!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Ode To The Hubby

Today is Father's Day and to top it off I have been married to hubby for 13 years today as well! I feel that deserves a tribute...Considering to begin with our "song" was "One" by Metallica you will see that we are not your traditional couple (you may not remember that particular little number but some of the lyrics were "all that I see absolute horror..." a real romantic little ditty!) So besides all of the sentimental hallmark card words that do apply to the world's best husband and father let me name five things that are just to cool about the man in my life...
#5 He yells "son of a biscuit" when he is really upset. He also had to add a family rule that states, "you can only swear when you shoot yourself in the finger with a nail gun" since that was the only time our sons actually heard him cuss.
#4 He can't lie....seriously he can't. He will look you straight in the face and say, "no, I have nothing planned for our anniversary" but he is grinning and blushing like a crazy person (yeah, babe you fooled me way to go!)
#3 He runs almost everywhere he goes! He is just so excited he is like a puppy on the loose and runs or sprints even into the hardware store to buy ant killer.
#2 He delusionally thinks that I am the hottest thing on this planet. I used to think it was just bacause he is legally blind, but I am beginning to think he really just thinks that. Pretty tough being married to someone who has to leave the room for a minute because you are so beautiful he can't take it.
#1 He gets up everyday and keeps trying, even though our life together with the wild monkeys can turn you into a crazy person!
So here's to you babe on this awesome day of celebrating you! I love you and don't know why I am so blessed, but I am always grateful to be.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Parenting-The "moments" theory

First a big hug to all of you for pretending you would be heartbroken if I were to sign off forever! Boy you guys are good! I think I might have to many soap boxes to leave for good, but I always think I will quit because I am a technology "hater". I totally should have been born in the Little House in the Prairie time period (exceptions-washing machines, electric light and air conditioning...wait there really are a lot), but I really hate cell phones, computers and don't even get me started on my feelings about texting....I digress...
Today is Sunday (translated the day you should feel close to God, but the day that at our house is a fight from morning to end). For some reason Satan seems to come to stay for all day so that we can't possibly feel the spirit and I told husband that I thought maybe I had decided the best way for me to go was to drive off a which he replied, "take me with you my love." I really would like to be fired from this gig today, but let's face it there is no one willing to replace me and though I don't feel so thrilled with my kids right now the bottom line in they are mine and so I have to forgive them for their wickedly bad choices of today.
An apostle (don't remember which one) and an author have a theory about parenting that I really liked. Warning I am not quoting them, but instead putting my twist on it. If you want the spiritual or well written read them, not me. The theory goes something like this, "parenting is made up of moments that make it all worth it in a sea of things that make you wish that you couldn't give birth or adopt children..." Ohhhh baby does that ring true. In my world there is no such thing as a good day, and very rarely is there a bad day. One minute you are driving home and your sweet two year old is yelling "mom" and you say "What?" and he yells "chicken, bock, bock!" and you laugh and all the other boys laugh and he thinks he is so funny that he belly laughs and does it all of the way home...."Ah", you think, "this is what life is all about". The next morning you wake up to little people screaming, "I hate you", "If you cook it I would rather die than eat it." Then you think to yourself, "I surrender, I give up" and you reach for a cookie. Then it occurs to you that this isn't a job at the local gas station. You can't quit, that's called child abandonment. So you send your son to bed at 6 because you have run out of creative punishemnts and he has way over stepped the bounds this time (again) and you pace around wondering if the Lord knew what he was doing when he sent you five babies that need to be turned into men of God and mostly by you....
So, here's to the moments...they are going to be few and far between sometimes, but I am almost sure that those will be the things your kids remember if you are really trying to be the mommy the Lord sent you here to be...Here are just a couple of mine.
  • Getting ready for church today I see Isaac grinning with a thumbs up and he says, "mom sometimes you are so beautiful I can't stand it."
  • Grayson napping in my arms through church
  • Kyle setting a goal not to lose his temper or be grumpy for a month because, "he doesn't want to let me or the Lord down anymore."
  • Driving home from science camp with Kyle and my mom laughing hysterically and thinking over and over, "he is so amazing, how did I get so blessed?
I hate that quote that says "life isn't measured by the amount of breaths you take, but the moment's that take your breath away." When you are the mother of five kids there are lots of moments that don't take your breath away (well, unless you count the ones that make you feel like you have been kicked in the stomach...) If that's the case, then life isn't much! So much of what you do is so not like that. But, those few moments thrown in mixed with daily TLC, forgiveness on both sides for messing it up, and renewing your committment to the little monsters (sometimes hundreds of times a day), to me that is parenting...that is why I am here and so though I don't "quit", for now it's only because faulted though I may be these blessing are all mine! Heavenly Father help me today to endure my blessings!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Multiple Personality Disorder Girl

I have a friend whose blog I read...on that blog she has a list of blogs titled, "Blogs I read that you shouldn't" Like any good defiant teen of 34 I couldn't help myself from looking them up and then spent the next hour reading one and laughing so hard I almost peed my pants (apparently if I am like most women near my age I will be doing that soon anyway). After reading it the blog posts started filling my mind and I realize there is an inner conflict in me that battles almost constantly, either that or I have multiple personality disorder. Let me introduce you to the two Heather's...On the one hand we have Typical Mormon Housewife Girl...This one works hard to keep things neat, orderly and happy. I home school and as of yesterday own chickens. I make my own bread and read to my children like crazy. We do morning devotional and have family home evening. I read parenting books and make charts for everything. We attend church every week and I love the Lord. I can bear my testimony with tears and I mean every word of it. I believe in family and at the moment have five children, but still don't consider us a large family. I drive a mini van. I adore my husband and have been married to him since I was a child (19 almost 20). I have a fake Scentsy candle wafting out lovely smells most of the time. I try to do what is right, I spell check and do food storage inventory. I used to scrapbook and know that I will probably start doing it again. You know her, sometimes you don't like her very much....let's hear it for Typical Mormon Housewife Girl!

Now may I introduce you to the other me! To friends like EE, Nic and T this girl is not really a shocking most of you, you just won't believe it! I have to bite my tongue almost constantly not to say the inappropriate sarcastic remark that I have for almost everything that is said. I think motherhood is wicked hard, harder than anything I have ever been faced with and some days there is nothing I would like more than to turn the job over to someone else. I hide candy from my kids and then hide myself so I can eat it without them. My husband's perfection sometimes annoys me to death and sometimes I swear just to see his eyes get all big. I have read Twilightmultiple times and I think it is stupid and a waste of time, but though the other me thrives on the productive use of time, this girl likes to waste it on anything remotely entertaining (may I also add mindless teenage chick flicks here). The other me is already worried that keeping it real will offend so many of you that I try daily to be like. Most of my friends appear to enjoy their children and love them so much that butterflies appear to be shooting out their faces every time they look at them. Sometimes when I wake up I make a rule that my children can't talk until I have had a shower. They never actually shut it, but I still say it. Point being there is a lack of butterflies shooting out of me a lot. Some of you know her, most of you don't. But, this is me anyway so a big round of applause for Psycho, Immature Full Grown Teenage Girl!

I could yammer on until the end of time. But after spending two days with a friend recently I realized a couple of things. First off, people don't like you if they think you are really and truly perfect. It makes you completely unapproachable and it's just not real. Second, I am tired. I am tired of trying to be "perfect". I am not. My children are not. The husband I love and I can fight better than most people, we also know that doesn't mean it's the end for us. I am going to try and live in peace with these two women. I know that some of that "evil" stuff needs to be tweaked (not like tweaking which I learned from my friend is mom's on meth), but you know improved. But, like it or not I just might be both. The me that hates holidays, parties and social gatherings and the me who plans each of those with a theme and a clean house because it is the right thing to do....who do you like best?

So feel free to write whatever you think about this...Some of you will go with the typical perfect response "oh Heather, none of us are perfect, but we just love you, love you no matter what." And that will be greatly appreciated. Or you can say what you are really thinking things like:
  • "You weren't fooling anyone we always knew you were a loser"
  • You can leave tips of the best places to hide while eating peanut butter M&M's
  • "Sarcasm is an art, feel free to use it."
  • Feel free to introduce me to your alternate self, I would love to meet her!
I spell checked this, but I am not taking the time to find a fitting photo to match...In the future, if I chose to continue to blog which personality do you prefer. Gorgeous pics of my kids in matching outfits in the perfect seasonal setting or me ranting on like an old version of Avril Lavine with no musical talent?

Where's Heather?

Usually I am writing a blog post in my head at all times. For the last month that just hasn't been happening and I have been trying to figure out why. Last night I think I found the answers...First off, I have been crazy busy. Quick re-cap: moved into new house, had lots of friends visit new home, went camping, finished up school year, etc. Second, lots of things have thrown me "off". Quick re-cap: everyone got the flu (including me), I broke my toe (yes again), and I got into a car accident (no worries we are fine). I also have been helping (but let's face it mostly watching) my husband put in out yard. If you know my husband you know the energizer bunny has got nothing on him. He works like crazy and whistles the whole time. Quick re-cap: put in sprinkling system, planted grass, built sandbox, planted garden, built flower boxes and planted them, planted 12 trees and built the mother of all chicken coops. I also have been arguing with myself about whether or not I plan to remain in the blogging world. So with that out there how about some comments on why you blog or don't and why you think I should keep at it or not...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

My Dilemma-Being in Several Places At Once

This year a big part of my problem has been my inability to be in more than one place at the same time. I understand why cloning ethically isn't really a great idea, but if it were available I might be tempted. I think if I could clone myself I would have one me just available for my sick children! I am not kidding you when I tell you we have had every thing going around this year. As soon as one kid recovers he is always nice enough to share it with brother and so on and so on (it's the only thing they share willingly). Just in the past two weeks, the following scenarios have been my reality:
-Isaac had the flu, but I had hopes it was better and so we headed to the Cinco de Mayo celebration with our home school group. Picture enchiladas, hot sun, dancing the macarena and a sick stomach...yeah it was that good...
-Last week had a busy day planned and when Jamen woke up his head was swelled up the size of a balloon...Move everything so we could go to the hospital for a cat scan and find the allergic reaction is causing pressure on his brain...
-Two weeks ago I was doing something that I love almost more than anything....sleeping...I am woken by my sleepwalking son who needs to go to the ER to have his head glued together at one o'clock in the morning...
-Today we have a great home school activity planned, a May Day celebration complete with May pole and bartering. I was up all night with Jamen who now has the flu...
Motherhood has turned me into a flake. I used to be punctual and you could count on me to be somewhere. Now I feel like I need to say, "you can count on me, well maybe..." I am telling you I would be the most together mom on the block, if I didn't have any kids...

Monday, May 4, 2009

Passionately in Love

In March I attended a Thomas Jefferson Education conference that I go to every year. I already reviewed the “biggies” for me on my blog, but I feel a need to go into a little more detail on one of the points. In one of the classes I attended on social leadership one thing really hit me like a ton of bricks. Now, when I think of social leadership I was thinking charity work, global thinking, training our kids, etc. Those things were mentioned but one the strongest points was that we need to have a strong marriage. Dr. Shannon Brooks stated, “if your kids aren’t telling you that you need to ’get a room’ frequently than you have a problem.” His point wasn’t just that we need to love our spouse, be nice, follow the golden rule and all that, but that we should be passionately in love with our spouses and our kids should know it. That has been my focus since the conference (honey I hope you have noticed!) I have always loved my husband passionately, but most of the time it was in my head while folding laundry. Now, I try to think to myself, “the laundry will be there after I kiss my husband and tell him he’s the best.” You know what the laundry was happy to wait and it was pretty great to see hubbies smile and the kids saying “eww gross” with giant smiles on their faces. What better gift can you give your kids then to show to them that the people that are in charge of them are crazy about each other and that they are a team? I just finished reading Behind Every Good Man by John Bytheway, what a great little book. It is filled with wisdom, but the bottom line is, you are not going to MAKE your husband into what he should be. How do you feel when it appears someone is pushing, nagging or critical of you? For me, I think, “yeah well forget it neener neener.” The same is true for your hubby. You catch a lot more flies with honey (or something like that) and even if he doesn’t change into what you think he should, the more you love him the less you want to change him at all….

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Get Used To It Or Retire

Sometimes blogs are for venting...this is one of those for me...I read a blog entitled "we are that family" the other day. I had to laugh at this mom because I think it is clear that we also are "that family." For us we are that family that is the noisiest at church, the ones who do "crazy" things like adopt and home school, the ones who don't have any TV channels...Anywho "we are that family." Today I attended church and bore my testimony in church and part of what I said was basically that I love the Lord and that I have a testimony and that is the only reason I go to church every Sunday. While there my children embarrass me and I hardly get to listen to a word. While there I spend the whole time trying to get my kids to listen, hoping that the latest round of primary teachers won't be thrown into retirement and hoping that the Lord loves us even if we are two seconds from tears because of all of it. I have one son who will remain nameless, but if you know me you know who I am talking about, that I worry about almost constantly. Usually I am doing all I can to reign in his affection and enthusiasm for life. It's embarrassing, it makes people uncomfortable and it makes it hard to go places. Today instead of feeling sorry for others I feel sorry for him. This is a boy who wants more than anything to be your friend. Most likely that means he will hug you and talk your ear off. When he was little people thought it was sweet, now most people (even kids his age) treat him with disdain or patronize him and act like they deserve a reward for not being outright mean. As he is growing up he is learning the lesson that not everyone wants to talk to you, not everyone wants to be your friend and enthusiasm and affection are not really OK...I am sick and sad and worried today as I think about this boy of mine...Today I feel my two options are to change my personality and quit caring what other people think and take him wherever he wants to go and quit trying to get him to be quiet and stop hugging and just let him be who he is. My second choice is to retire him from society and just let him be who he is surrounded by those of us who won't patronize him or ostracize him...I will let you know what I decide.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Making A Home

Well, we have been into our home for a couple of weeks and I have been running around like crazy trying to make it "ours". A couple of days ago I had to head back to the rental to take back the keys and as I walked through I almost started to cry knowing that it wasn't our home anymore...I couldn't figure it out. I then came back through the door of my new beautiful home and realized that while I am not blind, I can see how wonderful it is, it isn't home just yet...I am beginning to see what turns a house into a home and I thought I would share what I have learned...
#1 Homes need experiences...Let me tell you how how I knew this one...Thursday night in the middle of the night Jamen came in and calmly said he hit his head on the wall. I hugged him and told him to go back to sleep. A couple of seconds later he started running up and down the stairs and around our fireplace. I assumed he was sleep running (he does that) and asked Lyndon to wake him and take him to bed. Lyndon brought him in and turned on the light (it was 1 in the morning). When I looked up I see my little boy completely covered in blood...he had bumped it somewhere (we can't tell where the blood was everywhere) and when he felt the wet in his eyes he looked in the mirror where it was shooting out of his head into the mirror and he got scared and started running....We were lucky this round because they were able to glue it instead of stitiching it...Seeing your home lit up when you come home in the middle of the night from the ER gives you that home feeling.
#2 Homes need to have stuff that represents who you are as a family. I didn't want to put anything on the walls, I wanted everything neat clean and perfect. That lasted for a couple of days and then I started feeling like I was living in a pretty hotel. So I began hanging the things I love and bought a painting that I have always wanted and that means everything to us as a family. I hung it above my mantle, isn't it beautiful?
#3 Homes need dings, nicks and messes. Yes, you heard it from me who loves order.
#4 Homes need time. It takes time to be able to walk around in the dark without looking. It takes time to know which switches turn on what lights. We're getting there.
#5 Homes need gatherings. Jamen was baptzied today. My beautiful boy and his special day meant a whole house of family.
Anyway, I am finding what it means to have a home not just a house. I am grateful to have this place becoming our home. I really do live in paradise. I sat on my porch last night while everyone was asleep just thanking God he brought me here, and I know if we involve him this will be home before we know it.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

We Are Here! We Are Here!

Just like the town of Whoville yelling, "We are here!" I fell like doing the same. We are all moved into our place and settling into paradise like a family of troopers! I really have so much more to do, but wanted to post some pics of the place and give you a tour so to speak. Hope all is well with all of you...(unless your Jodi, there is no hope for you sweetie!)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Happy 8th Jamen

Yesterday was my baby's 8th birthday. Jamen laughs when I call him baby, but he will always be my baby. He began his life by letting us know how it would be with him...labor for 20 plus hours, then his heart all but stops and then he is delivered by an emergency c-section at which time he is blue, the nurse said she knew he would make it because he smiled at her...that's my Jamen. Lots of work and scares, followed by miracles and more joy than you can possibly dream of. I adore this boy of mine and can't believe he is 8! It goes so fast, may I never forget it...

Thursday, April 2, 2009

It's A Good Thing He Is Cute

My little Micah is such a joy and such a handful! He loves to make messes, loves to be outside, and worships (and I am not exaggerating) his dad. If he had a full time person just to watch him and do nothing else he would still find a way to get into mischief...It's just a good thing he is so cute!
FYI-The one with the tooth brush and paste is Micah hiding in my closet trying to pull one over on me. The black on his face is a whole tube of mascara...

Monday, March 30, 2009

A Child's Prayer

I just have to write a parent moment before I forget, these days we will be lucky if I remember what I am writing all the way to the end. My Isaac (who is 5) says the cutest prayers. Yesterday in primary he said, "bless these people not to miss us so much when we move and I will miss them and I just wanted to say this prayer so that I could say goodbye..." This morning he offered to say my morning prayer for me. After blessing that I would be a good mom he said, "bless that all our family will be safe where ever we are, even if there isn't a fence and it is on a high mountain. And bless we will have long ropes so that we can get down the hill safe and sound...." He is so cute!

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Winner of My Favorite Things Is...

Boy will y'all be glad when we finally move into the house and you aren't suffering through the play by play of the building process....The thing I felt most excited about has come to pass and I thought I would post pics. Picture #1 is of my all time favorite thing. In case you can't tell it is floor to ceiling book shelves that take up one entire wall and they are blue...glorious, so me blue! #2 Folding table in my laundry room with the cubby lockers for each kid on the side. You can't see it, but outside that window is a killer view of the mountains...I spend my entire life folding laundry, the view is a gift. #3 & 4 Pictures of the kitchen cupboards, did I mention that I love blue? Thanks for looking!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Look No Further....Parent of the Year

The following post will contain a great deal of sarcasm. Please note that it's not because I am not upset or not aware that there never was a worse parent, it's just how I deal. Last week I was out at the house trying to surprise Lyndon and do some of the cleanup so he wouldn't have to. I was working along and came to check on my baby, he was drinking out of a bowl of paint thinner. It looked like he hadn't gotten any so I didn't worry to much. Later as we are headed to town for pizza, because I am incapable of doing a project and feeding my children well, he starts throwing up straight paint thinner. After a good deal of time with poison control we were told all would be well as long as he didn't ingest it into a lung while throwing up. They told me and I quote, "if he stops breathing and turns blue, that is bad, call 911." Whew...thank goodness he let me know, because I am not sure I would have known what to do if he stopped...He's fine. I was "comforted" after speaking with my dad who teasingly remarked, "what kind of mother let's their kids play around that stuff?" My reply, "well obviously the mother of the flipping year." Today I met my mom and sister at my house wanting to show them the cupboards. It was a little nuts with all the kids, workers and all that was going on. I am saying that to set up the horror that follows, though please note I am not excusing myself. We left with most all of the kids crying, Lyndon needing a ride because his starter is shot and hurrying because I need to make dinner because the kids are "starviiiiiiing." Half an hour later the phone rings, it's the neighbor. The cabinet guys want to know if we are coming back for Grayson. WHAT? That's right we left one of our children and we didn't even know he wasn't here. My adoptive friends will be appalled, Shannon will probably disown me...These people wish every day for their kids to be home to take care of and I who am blessed to have them forget them...Mother of the year. I have to cry now and await the police coming to take me away...I will be taking collections for the therapy my sweet son is sure to need. Lucky me I just happened to leave the one who I left in an orphange for 8 months the last time I left him...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Multiple Fruits

Today was one of those days that I just really could see the magic of childhood (instead of being annoyed by the amount of laundry generated by childhood). Let me share a few magic moments with you. Isaac & Jamen went to play with a friend (thanks Brandt), while driving home they were both trying to tell me all of the great things about the visit. Issac was bursting with joy (he's 5) when he let me know that he had homemade jello with "multiple fruits." Seriously when was the last time you praised jello with "multiple fruits." We came home and read a stack of picture books one of which was Make Way for Ducklings and then we went for a drive. While out we talked about how fun it would be to see a line of ducklings. Not two minutes later while driving up the canyon we saw a line of wild turkeys! My kids were ecstatic, and to tell you the truth so was I. While we were in the canyon I told them to pick one little rock or leaf to show dad about our trip. Jamen brought back a cool rock that is all glittery. Isaac picked up a little pebble (to get what he felt was an assignement out of the way). Gray was all excited about his find and he opened up his little hand to reveal it to me. It was the top off of a pop can. He is avidly guarding his treasure. We also read the book Library Mouse (which we love) and had our own "Meet the Author"day. We stapled together little books and made our own and read them to each other. We had Star Wars, Dora, a gripping story about a Dinosaur that ate the family's dinner table and a sneak peak of the mystery that Kyle is writing. You know I am (today at least) beginning to see what all those people who have grown kids mean when they say, "You're going to miss this!" You know I think they might be right...

Saturday, March 21, 2009

What About the Honey?

I have been thinking a lot the last little while about my kids...this is nothing new for all of you mom's out there, I mean really what else do we think about? The topic however for the last little bit has been a lot more about love and a little less about laundry. I have been around a few people over the last little while who have really inspired me with the love they have for their kids. One of those is an excellent speaker and mentor named Angela Baker. You can tell she adores her kids and wants nothing more than to be around them and help them meet their mission. Another friend (Emily) honestly can't think of anything she loves more than life as a mom and the adoration she has for her three awesome kids just shines in her face, she inspires me. I just finished a book called Honey For A Child's Heart. The book is really about what and why we should read constantly to our kids, but I didn't really need that talking to! But in the book she points out how willing we are to give our kids "milk" as in making sure they are fed, clean and ran to this and that. But, she pointed out that often we miss giving them the "honey". She was mostly talking about how important for relationship building it is to read, but I caught the underlying message of how we need to be more to them than just a nanny (except of course if you are Mary Poppins). We need to look into their eyes and see the greatness that is there, see what God planned for them and then help them reach it. We need to look past the dirty faces, nose picking, never ending pile of laundry and see these amazing people that are ours to love and take care of. My kids need a hug and a story...

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Phase#7 A Few of My Favorite Things

Just some pics from the house...So many fun things happening. It turns out that when you build a house, that eventually you get to live there! It is getting close for us and we are so excited! The pictures are one of the garage door openings, the fireplace (without the mantle that is so wicked awesome), the entrance to our bedroom (Lyndon calls it my princess entrance), the entrance to the other half of the house and a little picture of the hardwood that Lyndon is installing as we speak...