Friday, December 5, 2008

St Nikolaus Tag

Tomorrow it St Nikolaus Tag. It's a German tradition where, before children go to bed, they set out their boots in front of their bedroom door (originally it was in front of their house) and leave a paper within the opening of one of the boots with a list of what they'd like for Christmas.
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In the morning when they awake, and if they've been good, they find nuts, an orange, maybe an apple, christmas chocolates, and a candy cane in place of their special list. If they've been bad, well, then they recieve a lump of coal. Fortunately, we haven't had any of that in our home yet.


All this was explained because, below you will see that Ethan is quite prepared for this event.


Apparantly, he derived such a list making idea from an article from the Friend magazine where a boy, earlier in the story, told about how his list was "as long as his arm". (Later on he is taught that giving is better than getting.)

We realized this when we heard Ethan say, "My list is longer than my arms!"

Hmmmmm. I think we've got some workin' to do.
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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Venting...

It would have been nice to receive that phone call, my sister and I both urged our parents to make, letting us know our daughter's made it safely to their destination....even if it is 2am.

I awoke at 2am thinking, "they should be calling shortly." At about 2:30 I began to worriedly drift off to sleep. I awoke on the hour at 3:30, 4:30, 5:30 and didn't get much sleep after that. "Why hadn't they called?" I saw visions of a plane plummeting into the dark ocean, I saw Tyra homesick and wanting to call me, but, for whatever reason couldn't, and I saw my parents comfortably talking away (and laughing) with family while I lie in my bed wondering if my daughter still lives...

I called my dad's shop at 8:30 and asked my sister, who answered the phone, if she'd heard from my parents. She had in fact and everything was "just fine." Well, suffice it to say, it wasn't "just fine" in my book! Apparently Tyra and her cousin Alyssa completely conked out after the plane ride and are in a deep sleep. . . that doesn't mean my parents couldn't call though and at least let us worried mother's know that all is well!

I was ready to give them a lecture...until I found out that the reason my sister had talked to them so early this morning is to let them know that "someone" had crashed my mom's car this morning.

Well, maybe that wouldn't have happened if they would have been faithful to their duties and called me last night. :)

I think I'll spare them the lecture.

(Call me ... pathetic, but I left Tyra's breakfast plates, just the way she left it before she left, all day yesterday.)

Monday, December 1, 2008

Glenn Beck Article, Tyra Leaves

As I traveled to one of Glenn Beck's speeches, 6 months or so ago, saying, "Glenn who?", I was hesitant about going and, fighting through traffic, I heavily considered turning around and going back home. But the experience I had by being there, the feeling that was there, the words that were spoken, the songs that were sung, and the spirit that was there made it an experience I'll always remember. It was an awakening.

Although Glenn has his own talk show on the radio I tend to only read his talks every now and then. I decided I'm going to start sharing the one's that I feel necessary to share with others through this blog.

So, here's one I feel all should read.

This isn't going to be a place to argue whether we believe him or not. One can believe whatever they want to and choose to be offended or not. . . so, take it for what it's worth.

Tyra has left to Germany.


Tyra left to Germany at four this morning. As I write she's flying over the US. (yikes!)

We'll really miss her but hope she'll remember forever, and look back upon with fond feelings, the experiences she'll have.
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Friday, November 28, 2008

8 Favorites

I've been tagged so here goes...

1.Post rules on blog
2. Answer the 6 "8" items.
3.Let each person know they've been tagged by leaving them a comment.

8 Favorite TV shows...I'll do books
instead

1. Jane Eyre
2. Guide me to Eternity
3. The Hiding Place
4. 1776
5. 5000 Year Leap
6. Ida B.
7. The Count of Monte Cristo
8. Standing for something

8 Things I did yesterday...I'll list today's

1. Went to Utrecht art store-bought some supplies
2. Went with family to Tracy Aviary
3. Went to Thanksgiving Point Gardens (it was free today!)
4. Ate ice cream and fries at T.P.
5. Decorated our home for Christmas
6. Changed Tyra and Ethan's beds into bunk beds
7. Took a break as I posted this entry on my blog
8. will be...going to bed.


8 things I look forward to

1. Tyra coming home from Germany (no, she hasn't even left yet)
2. Christmas party with our friends
3. Christmas party with girls I grew up with
4. Being able to open our chocolate filled advent calendars
5. Christmas
6. John's Kung-fu test being over with
7. Christmas school break
8. TMJ being completely gone...one day.

8 favorite restaurants

1. Mimi's Cafe
2. Johnny Carino's
3. Olive Garden
4. "Deutchen Laden"
5. Vosen's
6. Flour Girls and Dough Boys
7. Papa Murphey's pizza....mmmmmm
8. The Roof

8 things on my wish list

1. Publish one (or all) of my children's books
2. Finish my Language Learning Books
3. Become a better painter
4. Better guitar skills
5. Serve more people - continually
6. More patience
7. A calm spirit
8. 100 percent understanding about life

8 people I tag....

anyone who wants to.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It's Official!!!

Tyra is going to Germany in a couple weeks!!!
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My dad has been trying to talk me into letting her go with him for years...but, I felt she was way too young and wouldn't enjoy herself much.

Well, he and my mom are going in a couple weeks and he was, once again, trying his persuasive speech on me and probably felt much like a child about to open his biggest present ever when I told him she was probably ready now.

Not only is my dad taking Tyra but he's taking her cousin Alyssa! They are going to have sooo much fun! They'll get to ride in the plane, surprise their Old Oma they love so much, and be able to take in (as much as a 7 year old can take in) the different culture of Germany and go to Seiffen!!! Oh, how I envy her.
Seiffen is a little village filled with Christmas lights, smells, and, most wonderfully, German Christmas ornaments and decorations. It's heart warming!!! I bet she'll love it.

***I haven't been talking to John much....(he's in Brazil :) )
So, sorry if this is how you find out that it's a for sure thing before we get to talk, John! Talk to you tonight! (hee,hee)
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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Expelled

Bravo Ben Stein! Bravo!
(Here's a link to his movie trailer if you haven't seen it yet.)

If you want all voices (especially that of "Intelligent Design") to be comfortably allowed and accepted in the science room, you can visit a part of Ben Stein's site and "sign" the "I support academic freedom" petition. Signing this petition will help keep the fact that God had a hand in all creation as an option to be considered and discussed within the classroom.

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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Christmas Part II

(This entry is in reference to the comments posted to my last blog entry "Santmas or Christmas" ...)

It's neat that you (the Orgill's) have shared and still share such treasured memories. It sounds fun and uniting...I like the thoughts that have been shared. I'll have to think about this one for a while. :)

About gifts - Ya know, it's not the media that has influenced my thinking about gifts. It's finances...some friends of mine who have commented may understand:) So often there's so much stress involved in the holiday season when you don't know how to pay (not only for food, gas, and bills) and not only for special gifts you long to see brighten your own children's faces, but for a decent gift for all the other gifts you need to and want to give...it tends to leave a bad taste in your mouth when it gets to be ... like one recent Christmas for us. It's impossible to understand unless one has been through it.

But, at the same time, there's so much we've learned by having gone through such a trying time (as we struggled with more than just finances) during such a special season. There's so much we learned as we observed what others were doing around us and as we strived to discover what it was we could learn through it all on the inside.

It's taught me that not only during Christmas time, but throughout life; meaning, purpose, service, and joy is found in people. It's taught me to be aware of and sensitive to others' situations. To give to others who are needing a little cheering, who are struggling, who, during a time such as Christmas, want to be able to give like everyone else around them. It taught me to stop and be aware of one another's personal or obvious battles and do what I can to lift ones spirit with a message of hope and helpful advice. It taught me to look to the Lord and lean on Him at all times, especially during the hardest and darkest of times.

I am so grateful to the Lord for it was He, and only He, who knew the extent of our suffering. It was He, and only He, who helped us through, pushed us through, lifted us through, the last season. Our family wouldn't be together if He didn't. Oh, how I love the Lord! He has the right to having most of my attention during His season. I am just so grateful to Him.

But, concerning gifts - I think planning ahead is a good thing. Which is, I'm happy to say, what I've been doing this year...most gifts are already purchased and although my gifts may not be as fancy or as expensive as the gifts that are given to one another or even that I'll recieve, they'll be gifts that come from the heart because they're gifts we enjoy and hope others enjoy as well. That is what true gift giving is all about during such a wonderful time.

The traditions the Orgill's have spoken about sound wonderful. Such a thing must be the authentic reason for the season, to find what brings true happiness and contentment to our soul, our families, and let it bloom and burst during the best season of the year.

Thanks for all your comments. I look forward, more than I did before, to the up coming season and to spending it with all of you. I've been able to find and clarify the happy medium for myself and have rooted further peace and joy because of it.

And to John - I love you so much. You are my gift this Christmas.
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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Santmas or Christmas?



This is a photo of me gazing at the mystifying Christmas tree, probably dreaming of what Santa thinks I deserve or wondering what I'll end up getting on the upcoming exciting day called Christmas. I might've been gazing at one of the German wooden Christmas ornaments and imagining them come to life as I so often did during those cozy Christmas seasons.

We never received many Christmas presents as a young child. It was always the anticipation of it all that created the wonderful memories and feel of the whole December event. It seems that Christmas gifts are overdone nowadays. I know I'm not the only one who feels this way. Things, things, and more things, is what Christmas ends up being about. True giving is wonderful! It brings a joy to one's heart. But, things seem so distorted now. It's frustrating to have to buy, yet another, gift for, yet another, gift swap.

We gave our children 3 gifts each for our own family Christmas last year. But, after going to both grandma's houses the total of those gifts increased by about 10 toys / presents each. No, I'm not exaggerating. They didn't even know who's presents were whose. . . that's how much they appreciated what they got.

Oh, how I long for a time where one present per each child (totaling 3 presents after the visits with the grandparents) are the extent of Christmas gifts. I think there's something truly wonderful in being able to value what we get instead of tossing one present aside after another anxious to open the next present from the pile of presents lying in front of oneself.

Where's the true giving and receiving in it all?

In an effort to keep that beautiful Christmas spirit, this year, we have decided to get the kids one gift to share (this year it'll be a puppet theater with puppets) and a book for each one of them. And we'll be asking grandparents to keep the gifts at least down to 2 gifts per child... hopefully this will help. Of course, there are other things as well. Such as focusing on Christ...

Does anyone else ever feel that it is so odd how this make-believe Santa Claus figure (even thought he is such a jolly and fun person to think about) is such a strange thing to focus on when, of all things, of all people, it is Christ who should be receiving the attention? Isn't He worthy of ALL of our attention during such a wonderful season? Santa brings such a pleasant feeling to Christmas but I often wonder what we're missing out on if we solely focused on Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem, the beautiful birth of Jesus Christ, the wise men's story as they followed the star to worship this new sweet born babe instead.
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Santa becomes such a wonderful figure children think about during the Christmas season. He becomes real to them. What if the yearly experience these precious little children have was about Christ instead? It seems absolutely beautiful to me.

...I just don't get it sometimes. Maybe we should pretend that it's Jesus in the sleigh whipping those reindeer, landing on our roof, and coming down our chimney... hey, at least we'll be focusing more on the REAL thing! I love imaginary things but it doesn't seem in order to be believing in something imaginary which takes focus away from the most important birthday ever!


Hey, Easter bunnies are great, cute, quick, and cuddly. But once again a strange and foreign creature comes and steals away attention from something so wonderful and real... Jesus Christ, coincidentally enough, yet again. I can imagine a great council taking place in heaven with Heavenly Father and Jesus at the head of the meeting just shaking their heads at us little people on this earth as they say, "First a man who flies in a sleigh, now a mutant Easter bunny! What'll these people think of next?"
So, what it comes down to is 3 changes (for us):
1) Focus more on Christ. Maybe by reading many written stories of Christ's birth or by acting out plays of the same story. We can read all versions of his birth in the scriptures during Christmas season.
2) Less presents
3)Carry out our own wonderful holiday traditions. (Like I said it was the anticipation of it all which kept our spirits high and happy. Our home often smelt of lovely and delicious german pastries my mom would carefully bake. And she had such a wonderful touch with decorating our home which kept the excitement of the coming Christmas day high as well.) .

What are your thoughts for this up-coming season? What are you and your family doing to keep the focus on Christmas?


Friday, October 17, 2008

Anti Plague Formula

I'm making Dr. Christopher's anti-plague formula in two weeks and am only making it this one time. (It's a big process and I'm making a big batch not only for my family but my brothers and sisters families). I'm recieving help from a Master herbalist named Charlene who has been making this formula for over 10 years.

I feel so grateful for knowing about this formula and so I have to share it with those I know and am offering to make extra for those who want to purchase some.

If you'd like some please place your "order" through e-mail
claudiaorgill@hotmail.com. (I'm keeping a gallon of it for me and my family in our food storage.) The formula takes about 1 week to prepare and make - so it'll be ready in about 3-4 weeks. I'll only take orders seriously if they have been paid for within 2 weeks...lets say by November 1st.

It'll be $40 for one quart (4 cups).

It's $15 for only 2oz in stores! So at this price it's only $1.25 per ounce and its fresh! It can store for years in the freezer and is good for about a year in the fridge.

Here's a little about it:


"This is the best remedy for colds, flu or any communicable disease (especially bacteriological). It strengthens and stimulates your immune system and should be used as a tonic and preventative at the dosage of one tablespoon of syrup per day. If infected, increase to one tablespoon per hour."

"The anti-plague formula is built around garlic, which is well known as a natural anti-biotic. It destroys the unnecessary and harmful bacteria throughout the body. Garlic contains a very high amount of sulphur, one of the best minerals used as an oxygen carrier. Oxygen is the breath of life and sulphur will carry the oxygen in the body directly to the infected area. Germs cannot live in a good supply of oxygen, therefore, the infection is cleared quickly. This is an organic wonder, so garlic may be termed a wonder herb.

In addition, apple cider vinegar acts as disinfectant. The ingredients found in black walnut act as herbal destroyers of fungus. Marshmallow is the enemy of gangrene and peritonitis. It is a softening emollient that will aid in removal of the inorganic deposits broken up by the solvent gravel root. Wormwood relieves pain and kills pinworms and other unwanted parasites, etc. Mullein works on the bronchial track. Oak bark tones and firms the cells in the muscles, cartilage, and flesh. It is also an aid in rebuilding the circulatory system and feeding it. Scullap is one of the finest nerve repairing and rebuilding aids. It works especially well on the proliferant that causes the good cells to multiply rapidly and push out the waste and dead-cell structure, being supplied with the wonderful allantoin. Lobelia is the great catalyst to combine the herbal entities to a smoothly operating whole." Dr Christopher

All herbs mentioned above, plus the apple cider vinegar, garlic and honey make up the ingredients of this wonderful concoction. All herbs will be ordered from Mountain Rose Herbs and all other ingredients will be organic or U.S.P. grade.

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Enjoy getting your food storage together! Hard times may be ahead, but, I feel they will be happy times as well.
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Thursday, October 9, 2008

Being Prepared


It's obvious that we are spiraling down into an economic crisis. Who knows, maybe things will get better. I don't like the "doom and gloom" talk or feel and don't intend to create that in this blog. But I did want to list some things I have (or will soon have) in our food storage that makes me feel a little more comfortable with the way things are going.

#1 Is an "anti-plague" formula. The link doesn't give too much information. Here's another one. I've just heard (mainly from Robyn Openshaw and the people she has influenced) that this is amazing stuff. There's a lady in American Fork that makes some and sells it but she's usually always backed up for a month or more, it can also be purchased in herbal stores. And it stores for years (atleast the one the lady makes does - I don't know how long the store bought ones last.)

I've purchased the recipe and directions for making it and have contacted the woman above who will help me make it and so am thinking about making a batch myself. If anyone is interested in buying any from me please let me know. I'm guessing it'll be about $20-$30 for a good sized bottle of it.

#2 Wheat. (of course!) Not only for making bread but for growing as sprouts.

#3 Frozen fruits, greens, grape juice, and (soon) chopped up garlic. Now we just need to get a generator.

#4 Green drink powder - I really want to know that I have things on hand that can keep my family healthy when (or if) things fail.

#5 Water. Lots of it. I still need to get more.

#6 Cloth diapers

#7 Formula (I never know how little milk I'll be making when I have a baby)

#8 My bulk storage: rice, beans, salt, oatmeal, popcorn, and my wheat

#9 Seeds. So we can grow our own produce during the appropriate months.

#10 Hand Warmers. I love the idea of having these during the cold winter months. Especially if there is no heat. Wal-Mart sells them. I feel that one can't have enough of these. I'd like to hear other ideas as to how to stay warm during the cold months.

#11 Cream of Wheat and Cracked Wheat. They make a good filling breakfast. And a little goes such a long way. And all it requires to make it edible is water (and a bit of sugar or honey go on top.)

Extras. A few extras I like having are: Crayons and paper, (I hate to think of a child during a time of economic failure {or something like that} that isn't able to color) cake mixes, (a birthday cake for a birthday seems like an extra treat during hard times) and Chocolate Milk mix - the "just add water" kind. (I imagine warm, sweet, creamy chocolate milk in a child's mouth giving the comfort to him or her that all will be well again.)

I listed much more than I thought I would but, when I think about it, there's quite a bit to get together and have. Other things that are important are having a stash of small bills handy and some gasoline.

What things have any of you stored which make you feel at ease if disaster strikes?

Love to you all.

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Saturday, October 4, 2008

The 5 Love Languages!


We had an interesting (but good) lesson in church last Sunday. It was about the 5 love languages. This discovery by Gary Chapman says that we have different love languages. The languages being: Quality Time, Recieving Gifts, Physical Touch, Acts of Service, and Words of Affirmation. I was a little concerned at first as to whether or not this lesson would include the teachings of Christ in it but, I'll admit, once the teacher wrapped up the lesson it was pretty well balanced and it ended on a strong spiritual note.

Her handouts were 2 tests we can take. One for the husband and one for the wife. John and I took these tests and our guesses as to what the other persons love language is was right. It was a good reminder though.

The eye opener for me was when I asked Tyra and Ethan the questions to this test. (The words obviously had to be changed and simplified). The outcome was a huge eye opener for me in that after I discovered what their love language was so many things clicked in place. (Oh, so that's why you always do this or ask for that?)
And I especially enjoyed when, after discovering the result, I would ask them so you like it when mommy and daddy do this or that don't you? And both Ty and Ethan genuinely and sincerely looked me in the eyes and said, "yes." and then yearned for some of their love language after we had talked about it.

It's made a difference in our home. How so? Because if one of the kids are getting cranky or really acting up I just figure that more than likely they're lacking the kind of love that they can interpret as love. So we clearly and easily know OK this person is needing this type of love. We give it and it works miracles. It's really been a blessing in our lives. And made things even happier and healthier in our home.
It's interesting how we all hunger for love. And interesting also, is that we hunger for it in different ways from others.
Here's a link to one of the quizzes. Like I said, just simplify what it's asking, for the kids. (I always began with - "would you rather...") They'll know which one they like more and the outcome may be surprising!

And see directions as to how to interpret the outcome here.

Hope this helps to bring a little more love into your lives!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Good grief!

A couple weeks ago the kids and I went to a wedding reception. We ran into someone I've known since I was little. She is a kind, hard working, woman. But, I admit, I'm quite frustrated with how she interacted with my kids (Tyra mainly). I'm not only frustrated with her but her kind.

She naturally asked Tyra what grade she's in, which is fine, she was kindly starting up a conversation with Tyra. Once Tyra informed her that she's homeschooled she began to quiz her. Saying things such as, "So are you learning things like 11+21?" and then began to ask her multiple math questions and proceeded to give Tyra a math lesson right then and there in the middle of the reception as her husband stood waiting for her at the door.

Tyra, under pressure, had a hard time even answering the question "What about 4+3?" I know she knew the answer but here she was suddenly undergoing a math test by this woman she doesn't even know-she buckled.

So I'm left feeling frustrated. Why is it that people either A) have to prove to themselves whether homeschooling is a good thing (or not) by testing homeschooled kids? or B) Why does one make an assumption as to whether or not someone is smart (or not) by asking them academical questions?

I'm convinced that if she would have talked to Tyra in a human-like way, asking her what she is interested in or (if the woman's need be) ask her what she has been learning, I'm sure she would have been impressed with this little, yet big, individual.

Does one, when encountering a stranger/possible friend for the first time, ask them questions such as "Can you factor the polynomial x3yz4-x2yz3+2xy2z2?" to determine whether they are an intelligent or capable individual? The answer is obvious.

There's so much more to one's character. Who are they really? How do they feel about life? What drives them? What are they interested in? How do they relate to you? How much do they love to learn? How well are they able to connect with you in a humane manner?

Whether or not one knows a math problem is frivolousness (unless one is asking to learn).

Whether or not one has a good, well-defined, clear thinking, mind and character which thrives with an unclouded awareness as to what his own values are is what is vital.

Good grief, the last thing these kids need is to feel that academical facts are what makes them worth talking to or, of all things, what makes them an intelligent person.

There's so much more to intelligence than math problems or the like!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Great Foods

I've been really happy with some meals we've come across which have become part of our regular diet. Why, yes, I'll share...


First we have tomatoes. Nice and wonderful. Red and round. Not to mention fabulously healthy. What do we do with these luscious "fruits"? We boil them for 30 seconds or so until their skin is peelable. We peel them. Chop them up and freeze them....lots of them. Why, you ask? So we can use them for spaghetti sauce throughout the year.

The spaghetti sauce is quite simple and quite tasty. It's been handed down from John's grandma to his mom to her children. The recipe is as follows:

About 2-3 cups of tomatoes of the frozen tomatoes (let thaw or sit in hot water to defrost), about 6 tbsp of brown sugar, 1-2tsp of oregano, a large sprinkle of salt, let it warm up (don't boil it or it kills the tomatoes healthy enzymes) and Voila you've got spaghetti sauce! Some spaghetti and some cheddar cheese make it a real spaghetti meal and garlic bread is great with it as well.

We love this meal an extra lot because it's quick, easy and its definitely healthier than a box of macaroni and cheese. We've even use it as the sauce we dip our grilled cheese sandwiches in!

BIG P.S. Store bought tomatoes DO NOT work. Only the farm fresh tomatoes (or home grown tomatoes) work. Trust me, I've tried it. I buy my tomatoes from the little farmers market stands along the road for $15-16 a box.

Mmmmmm. My favorite salad.

It consists of this: Spinach, cut up apples, cranberries, sliced almonds and honey mustard salad dressing (all natural). I love it. I could eat it every day. In fact, we pretty much do.

Concord grapes. Pick as many as you want at Thanksgiving Point. What do we do with these? We have made them into juice. How? By picking them (obviously), washing them, chopping them up a little in a blender, simmering them, and straining them with some cheese cloth wrapped over the top of a large bowl or pot, (tightened onto it with a rubber band) and finishing off the straining process by scraping, smashing and adding a little water to the grapes over a seive.

It's messy, it's very purple but it's SOOO yummy. And, I might add, deliciously healthy.

And, last but, of course, not least. Is our Thai dish. Originally it's used with mangoes but we were introduced to this meal using peaches and love it that way.

All it contains is "sticky rice" (called calrose rice - you can buy it most anywhere in the oriental food section of the grocery store...or just use any rice), cut up peaches, and coconut milk (it's canned and is also found in the oriental food section of the store). It's a dish you don't have to feel guilty about eating throughout the day. You can eat this for breakfast, lunch, even dinner if you add something a little more filling like bread to it, and it's good for snacking between meals.

The kids come to me complaining quite often about how hungry they are...so I point them to the sticky rice and they love it!

PS here as well. Store bought peaches are okay but don't even compare to the farmers market peaches. Once again $15 a box which makes about 15 frozen baggies of cut up peaches.


Thanks Rosanne for introducing us to this one as well!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

6 Things Which create a Joyful Home


Aside from the uncommonly craziness of a few days before, our home has been filled with peace and joy. This is the most it has ever been filled with such feelings of unity and understanding.


There are 6 things I feel are attributing to this and I felt the need to share:


1) Saying thank you and please to one another

2) Complimenting one another

3) Loving touches, pats, hugs and kisses

4) Listening to one another, acknowledging feelings

5) Laughing with one another, laughing at things which normally annoy

6) Ignoring bad behavior

(unless it is the kind of a behavior which breaks an already solidified rule - which will result in the loss of a privelige)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Are you kidding me?!?!

So, earlier today we, meaning John, myself and the kids, went grocery shopping together. It was a very large shopping trip to say the least and after an hour, when only two items remained to be found and flopped on top of our heap of groceries which spewed out of our cart, I hear a child go bolting across the polished cement floor and suddenly hear a horrible double thud, which could only be made from something such as one's head, accompanied by a terrible vibration through the ground under my feet, followed by a terrible shrieking, which I then knew involved Ethan.

He grasped both sides of his head with both hands and wailed in horror of the pain which came from the terrible bash. His face lacked all normal color. Knowing it would be a while for Ethan to calm down I knelt down letting him wail in my lap, shouting to John what the last two items on our list were. After about 5 or 10 minutes, lots of stares from people and children- but no offer of help, Ethan calmed and we were able to find John.

Due to Ethan's unusually quiet behavior and pale face I feared the worst. After we got home and unloaded our groceries, which then, didn't seem so important anymore. I had him in the car to take him to the ER so we could make sure no internal damage was happening...you never know right? But, after deciding to wait it out, the normal Ethan returned.

SO...he decides to play outside and is pushing Millie on one of those handle bar trikes. Suddenly I hear Ethan calling me so I go to him and am confused by his worried expression on his face. I have a wild imagination and tend to fear the worst so I thought maybe he had lost his vision (from his fall) and was worried. But after hearing Millie screaming I instantly realized Ethan hadn't obeyed me when I told him, "be careful as you push her."

Millie is obviously hurting. I can see black road scuff marks on the sides of her clothing and new she had hit, head first, (on the same side as Ethan's interestingly enough) as well. Her face is pale her wailings would be heart breaking to someone whose heart hadn't gone numb yet...but unfortunately the incident at the store as well as the shopping trip in itself, the much whining and crying and chaos that seemed to follow me everywhere I went ever since I got home, and the stress of wondering if Ethan's skull and brain was damaged left me feeling very little.

I held her until she stopped crying. Fortunately her love for food helped calm her down. And she began to fall asleep in my lap. But, then I worried if she was falling asleep because of brain injuries as well (I know, there I go again) so I kept her awake by giving her a bath. I noticed a big goose egg on her head as I dried her hair. But, she's fine so far. I'm sure that throughout the night I'll be checking her to make sure she responds to my poking her and isn't twitching from having seizures.

SO...Tyra took her first shower today. It felt like she was suddenly all grown up and it's funny how clueless one can be when one has never taken a shower before. Well she was kind of excited and I left her and let her have her privacy (of course!) In the meantime I had Ethan and Cedric take a bath in the other bathroom. After they had gotten settled I went to check on Tyra. Who, when I got to her, had shampoo in her eye, and must of had some sort of wrestling match with the adjustable shower head due to the water sprayed up to the tops of the vaulted ceiling and the puddle of water next to the rug upon the bathroom floor. "What on earth?" Is all I could say. But left it at that.

I return to the boys' bath. For some reason they're both out of the bath tub Cedric is bent over waiting for me to wipe his bum...that's always a wonderful sight isn't it? And Ethan is in the process of finishing up wiping his bum and has succeeded in, once again, using half of the toilet paper roll for one bowel movement. I wipe Cedric's bum..."When did he poop? Did they have a pooping party?" I wonder. Ethan gets back into the tub. I try flushing the toilet. No luck, it's clogged. Ethan Mr. Solver points blatanlty to the plunger....but he forgets that the toilet is filled with poop. I'd rather try my luck with flushing it over and over again.

I suddenly notice little brown peices floating in the tub. Cedric must've squirt some inners from his bowels into the tub which Ethan was now bathing in....

This is where I think, "ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!"

It's only 8pm and they are going to bed!


.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Updates...

So here's a bit of an update from the last blog. . .

No, I haven't submitted my story summary to any publishing agents .... yet. I've spent my extra time writing a couple other stories with 2 more waiting in the back of my mind. I've realized that I love to write. I'm not very good at it but I get what makes a good story. So after working on a simple story long enough it becomes what I want it to be and, I believe, one day, I'll come up with a story that's a hit for everyone....including publishing agents and publishers. So maybe I'll finish a couple more stories then submit them all at the same time.

I have face painted at 5 or 6 fairs (a couple were one day fairs and some were 3 day fairs). But, I'm at a halt with that right now. Our family has learned a lot by me tackling this new adventure. We've definitely come to appreciate one another. But one thing totally killed the momentum in it all for me. ...John and the kids came to one of the fairs to visit me. John was pushing Millie in the stroller. I was excited to see her and as I looked at her and she looked back at me, I'll never forget the look on her face, it was .... I'm not quite sure what it was but here's what it wasn't.

It held no look of attachment or close satisfaction or comfort at seeing me. It missed the connection her and I always had when we saw one another. After that I knew none of the extra income from face painting was worth it. The Lord will provide for us. Not only will we be blessed in listening to the Lord's promptings by having John go back to school but we will be blessed by having me stay at home, keeping order and love in the home, as I'm constantly there.

A mother, it seems, provides anchorage for her children. When she is constant, in presence, emotion, and spirituality, a child is secure and content. But when a mother washes about, rolling and swaying in and out of waves, either in presence, emotion, or spirituality, her children are filled with unsteadiness, unsure of what's to come. Peace is hard to find. Connection is difficult to develop.

I intend to allow my children to feel that peace to the best of my ability. Considering that it involves stability and steadfast efforts in the emotional and spiritual categories - it'll be a lifelong venture for me.

Which reminds me. There's something the spirit has led me to over and over again lately. It's the phrase/scripture, "set your house in order." And I'm trying to figure out exactly what the Lord means by this. Does he mean the things in my home? Our finances? What we are focusing on in our home? What I'm focusing on? Or all of the above? We'll just have to work on all of the above unless I get some specifics (which would be nice...hint, hint) But, we'll do what we need to do. I feel there's a reason for this counsel....I just hope it's nothing too trying. :)

Through this I'll be focusing on one of my favorite scriptures:

"Organize yourselves;
prepare every needful thing;
and establish a house,
even a house of prayer,
a house of fasting,
a house of faith,
a house of learning,
a house of glory,
a house of order,
a house of God."

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Great news!!!

There are three great things that have headed my way recently. Well, let's say four...

1. I... get this, finished my children's book today! (applause, applause, applause) I've been feverishly working on it for a couple months now. It's been trying. Deep feelings that are embedded in me came out in this book and I had to clarify what it was I felt, trying to explain it in a clear way with a storyline that was appealing. One you'd like to read over and over again.

After changing a larger detail in the story line yesterday and finishing up the details of it again today, I asked John if I could, yet again, read him my story. I knew it was pretty much complete when, after reading the story, I saw his eyes glisten with tears. I felt like crying too. It was a really neat moment I'll probably never forget. I had felt like I'd never finish it...something was always needing changes.

I also did a test on Tyra by reading it to her...she paid attention the whole time and said, "I loved it!" No, she wasn't trying to humor me...the kids often say, "that was a good one!" after reading them a good book and my own book now falls into that category!

Now I'll take on the challenge of finding a publishing agent and hope a publisher finds my book worth publishing...

2. Those who know me well, know how strongly I feel about pornography and diminishing the seeds that lead to it. I've had an idea about an organization I'd like to get started that will set a standard for participating stores and advertisements, one which, when agreed to, promises they are free of any indecent materials that lie in a persons normal route through their store or such....

Recently I've received two contacts from within two different organizations. One being the Lighted Candle Society and the other being American Mother Inc. A couple mornings ago I finally decided to take the leap and contact these people within these organizations to let them know I had an idea I wanted to share with them.

I was contacted today by a woman who is serving as White Ribbon Chair (anti-pornography/decency) on the Utah state board of AMI and was invited by her to a luncheon that will take place in one week. Those attending this luncheon will be people who are also working against pornography in similar ways as I am, even, a member of the Lighted Candle Society (this is a society filled with doctors, lawyers, and such).

I hesitated contacting these people, I felt worried that I may be getting in over my head but I feel driven to this. I feel passionately about doing something to decrease the amount of people who become addicted to pornography. And I know the Lord is leading me. It was Gordon B. Hinckley's quote that pushed me to make the leap and send my e-mail(s). "The time has come for us to stand a little taller, to lift our eyes and stretch our minds to a greater comprehension and understanding of the grand millennial mission of this The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This is the season to be strong. It is time to move forward without hesitation."

3. To help John get through school and to help us through the hard winter months I have decided to face paint at fairs and festivals. I have a fair I'm going to 4 out of the 5 weekends in August. I'm excited to do it. It'll be fun painting many designs on all sorts of faces. It'll only be a handful of weekends during the whole year and it will benefit us in great ways. I'm glad this opportunity came along...;)

4. The Homeschooling Book Group I started about 6 months ago is so wonderful. I love having strong, spiritual, mission-driven, thoughtful, women in my life who motivate me, enrich my mind, and are such good examples to me. I feel so blessed to have this be a part of my life.

I'm feeling excited and nervous about some of these things but they are all good things. I'm so grateful to the Lord for placing them in my path. This IS "the season to be strong and the time to move forward without hesitation."

The Lord uses ordinary people to do great things...I hope to be one of those ordinary people. I hope to be an ordinary person, who, after having passed from this earthly life, will stand in front of Heavenly Father, looking confidently into His eyes as I respond to His questions, "How have you loved? and How have you served?"


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Another Triathlon!

John did the Provo triathlon this last weekend. He was awesome!
John and his friend Chan have been training together by swimming at 5 in the morning 3 times a week and by biking and running. It was fun to watch them both.
Here's the leftovers from our first salad that came straight from our garden.
We all enjoyed it - especially since we grew it ourselves.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Tri-Day


John accomplished the Salem Triathalon today! We're so proud of him! He did much better with the swim than he thought he would.

Maybe the triathalon should have been titled a dyathalon because biking was eliminated from the race due to the rain (supposedly it creates dangerous riding conditions on the road).

We're proud of him anyway!

Here's the group of tri-athletes getting ready to begin the race.

PS I felt motivated by all these men and women who have trained long and hard to take part in such a challenging event. I almost felt the desire to complete one - just so could have accomplished such a thing in this lifetime. But then I realized....I've done 4 of my own kind of "triathalons"!

Only, mine doesn't consist of 5K runs or 500 meter swims...oh no, mine is 9 months long and the hardest stretch of the "race" comes at the end. I accomplish this challenge without any energy booster packs, wet suits, or a full body massage and treats after crossing the finish line.

Such are the challenges I train for and accomplish and I do one about every 2 or 3 years!

I'm impressed. :)

OUR GOOD FOOD HABITS (currently):

Green Smoothies in the morning

Sprouts

Raw almonds

Almond milk (vanilla flavored)

Meals with veggies

Herbal Teas



Saturday, May 10, 2008

8th Anniversary

8th Anniversary!

















Who knew that our first likings of one another would lead us to where we are today. Who knew it would lead us into hardships we'd feel like we could endure no longer. To trials that would push on us until we'd rather be crushed. To personal decisions we'd make from minute to minute that would determine the future.

Yet, here we are now, through the roughest era, into one of love, acceptance, respect, appreciation, happiness and most of all, love.

Love you John!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Recipe & Quotes

Yup, we're still drinking our green smoothies. Here's our favorite recipe:

1 1/2 cups organic apple juice
large handful of spinach
2-3 leaves of collard
2-3 leaves of kale
1 banana
1/2 avocado

That's it! It's our secret recipe so don't share! ;) We don't mind the green color. Green is good!!! Society has simply tainted our way of thinking - it's the best color we can take into our body.

I almost want to take on Elder Grobergs diet as he served his mission on the Tongan islands. It consisted of roots, potatoes, leafy greens such as seaweed, seafood (fish, crabs, lobsters), and fruits and vegetables. Once or twice a month they'd have chicken or pork.

Doesn't that sound wonderfully healthy?

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
"Wherever you go or whatever you do, under proper assignment, put your whole heart and soul into it and you will be happy and have joy therein. It doesn't matter whether it be family, work, missions, or other callings, joy comes from hard work and proper attitude, not location or type of work or calling."
- John H. Groberg

"It is not how much we do but the love we give that really matters."
- Mother Theresa

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Oops!

Oops!


What kind of a mother would dare damage her sons eye?
One who is willing to playfully throw a large woodchip at her child's head.

Eth and I were playing together chucking woodchips from the front yards' landscaping when I tossed the largest wood chip that had yet be thrown and watched the whole process of it as it went elegantly gliding through the air, jutting squarley into Ethan's eye.

It cut the skin a bit on the eyelid and on his eyeball. The scarey part was when his pupil wasn't dilating. It must have been from the shock of the hit because eventually it began to work again.

Poor fellow.



That same day he fell down onto the rocky dirt in our backyard
as he chased a dog. He had a hard day. But we were able to cheer him up with some home made cookie dough.






Taking it easy....that's what Cedric and Millie were doing in the wagon together.

Warm days are SO wonderful!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

New Blog

I have a new blog at www.chrysalidsjourney.blogspot.com.

This blog may very likely be put on the back burner. But now and then I may tap in with some thoughts.

Happy Blogging!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Run! RUUUUNNN!

Our home has been a torture chamber for the last week and a half. We've had the flu and it has been terrible! John, Ethan, Tyra and Cedric all got it at the same time, tuesday of last week to be exact, and they're still recovering. It starts with tummy aches then progresses to fevers, chills, body aches and a after a few days, when you think you're getting better, another wave of suffering hits and there's fever, coughing, and a terrible cold to go with it.

Heavenly Father has blessed us though. I didn't get sick until that coming saturday. Who would've taken care of us if we were ALL sick at the same time? I wouldn't dare to have anyone come into our flu infested quarters. John has taken care of all of us the last 4 days now and he has done it in an amazing way. It wore on him at times - one can't blame him. But, he has been so great with keeping order in the house and tending to the needs of ill and recovering people.

People should put signs on their houses, the way they used to do it during scarlet fever epidemics, saying, "FLU. Run! RUUUUNNNN!" I'm into my fifth day now. And had a fever almost all night last night.

Millie has had a fever the last couple days now. We were trying SOOO hard to keep her away from the germs. I just worry about her getting the cough that has come with this virus. We've given her a blessing and are praying for her. I hope she'll be alright. . .

It's that time again - homeschool restructuring. I don't plan these events - they just come. Usually when I'm feeling frustrated or overwhelmed. Why do I feel this way? Because I can tell that our way of homeschooling needs to step up a level - things tend to stagnate. Then I pray, plan, and revise how we're doing things. Some things stay the same. Otherwise, improvements are made and we move forward in a productively better way.

I always seem to fall in love with homeschooling and why we're doing it all over again during such times! I'll never pretend like it's an easy thing - it's not. But it's wonderful.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Home Happenin's

John's home! Woo hoo! There's nothing like growing closer to a spouse because of being separated from one another. It's so nice to have him home.

We've been reading Junie B. Jones books. They're children's books and are hilarious! I had a laugh attack into the first few pages of the first book of hers we read. The kids didn't quite know what was going on - besides Ethan who had witnessed such an ordeal before.

We're getting our garden going! I'm so excited. I'm a convert to the "SFG" (Square Foot Garden) idea and I think it's going to be great. We're going to plant beets, collard, kale, spinach, lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes, string beans, sweet peas, and pumpkins. Sounds like a leap of faith considering this will be my first real garden ever! But, the SFG makes it so simple and almost fool proof - I can't wait to see the results.

I slept good last night but listen to the details of the night before....I got up twice to take tylenol (ongoing toothache), once to go to the bathroom, once to blow my nose, once to cedric crying for his binkey at the end of my bed, I placed millie's binkey back in her mouth about 5 times, I nudged John about 5 or more times to stop snoring, he twitched in his sleep for about 30 minutes, and I fed Millie once. I was awake from around 3am until after 6am.

Those kind of nights make me insane...I mean really insane! I don't even know why I ever layed down. But, I survived and I'm sure glad not every night is like that. Sometimes Millie really gets going with dropping the binkey out of her mouth and crying for it, wow.

I need to start posting more photos and I still need to re-do my blogs look...it'll get done - one day!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Hogi Yogi

The other day Tyra said, "Mommy, can we do Hogi Yogi?" It took me a minute to get what she was trying to ask. She meant yoga! I couldn't stop laughing.

John called two days ago and let me know that he was going to be coming home 3 days early! (They finished their work early.) He was supposed to come in today around noon but I heard from my mom last night that they missed their plane (airports fault) and will have to wait one more whole day since there's only one plane that flies from Brazil to Atlanta per day.

What a bummer! We were so excited to have him back home. I felt so relieved that all went well there and that he had been safe. Now he's in a bigger, busier city within Brazil, one that he's not familiar with.

Just come home safely!!!

PS I went to an enrichment activity Shanda invited me to where the "Green Smoothie Girl" demonstrated making her green smoothies and not only fed us many other samples but a fun amount of information as well. I'll post a blog with all the info. I learned from that at a later time.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

John's Gone

John left to Brazil today and I'm so sad! I'm bothered because I don't know if my uneasy feelings are simply from being overly worried or if the feelings mean something will happen. I haven't wanted him to leave and now, already, I just want him home. I love having him around so much.

But, we've got plans that will keep us busy - I just hope his plane flies safely to and from Brazil and that he'll be safe in Brazil...it's not a very safe country to be in.

(John's in Brazil with my dad to help with the windows for the new temple.)

sigh....

Friday, March 14, 2008

Dentist Appointment Today

I had a dentist appointment today. I haven't been in since I was 7 months pregnant with Camilla. Does anyone remember that?!?!

Two interesting things happened that day...no three (one I didn't know about until today). 1. When the dentist gave me the shot in my lower right nerve she made a "direct hit" to the nerve which instantly numbed my lower right side from the jaw to the lip but it hurt terribly bad! It felt like the ending point (under my right lip) exploded. I naturally went to grab that area and the nurses quick reflexes grabbed my hand and pulled it down. (It's embarrassing to think of what a problem I was for the dentist and assistant that day.)

What happened was just that - my nerves were damaged it took 7 months for the nerves under my lip to stop tingling and feeling numb! That IS how long it takes for nerves to heal.

Then, because she was working on my wisdom tooth she was lodging that foam block so far back in my mouth to open it as wide as possible. Now, I might add here, that sometimes when I yawn my jaw can stick open feeling like it's going to lock open, so I always quickly end the yawn and all is okay. Well, in the dentist chair that day, such wasn't the situation. She pulled the wedge out and you can only guess what happened. Just imagine me, sitting in the dentists chair with my mouth completely open without being able to close it. Just pretend for a minute...it's horrible!

The nurse tried to massage my jaw hoping that if it would relax it'd loosen up and go back. But it definitely didn't work. It took all the self control I could muster up not to go into a panic! Due to the discomfort of the situation I didn't notice the witness I had next to me. I suddenly hear someone next to me say, "That doesn't look comfortable." I simply (try) to say,"Ig ignt" and once again control the panic that is about to take over my being.

Fortunately my dentists office is in a medical building and someone went and grabbed some other doctor in the building who came in and gently grabbed my jaw with both hands, rocked it back, then forward to the point where my bottom teeth were in front of my front teeth and then, in the same swift motion, rocked it into its right place. I could have kissed him! I was so relieved!

Ever since then I've gained a new fear. Having my jaw lock open. What would I do if John is gone and I'm home alone with the kids and my jaw locked open? Will the kids understand the malformed words coming from my open mouth? I'd be quite the site to see (and remember) if I tried to go over to a neighbors house. Calling someone is out of the question. Do I drive myself, mouth wide open, swallowing near impossible, speaking unrecognizable, to an Instacare? Think about it (and Em stop laughing! - this is serious! :) )

Anyway, point being, I went to the dentist today and all went well. He let me move my jaw every few minutes throughout the hour and a half procedure. He let me keep my mouth open to where it was comfortable to me - even though it was more inconvenient to him. He had to shorten the drill bit so he could get it where he needed it. And he went easy on the shot - even though, once again it went directly to a main nerve - this time one that led to my tongue but right when I naturally reacted to it and he knew it happened again he didn't put in the rest of the numbing solution, which would've caused more damage, he drew the needle out. My tongue and inner gum area were already numb and didn't need anymore solution.

It was nice of them to be so kind. They all remember me in that office. I'd remember myself too if I worked there. A young little mother, 7 months pregnant, sitting in the dentist chair with her mouth stuck open. Yeah, that makes an easy memorable moment.

Oh, the other thing I found out happened that day was that the main dentist (the one who worked on me today) and the other dentist (who worked on me that dreadful day) had quite the argument and he actually hurt her feelings because she didn't want to work on someone who was pregnant and he didn't think it would be a problem.

I don't think she'll be working on a pregnant woman again!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Good News!

This will be my blog's "good news minute".

1. I slept, pretty much without waking up, all the way until 5am this morning!

I normally wake up 5-10 times per night (for no reason at all) and often have a hard time going back to sleep so this is really good news for me. I can always tell if I've actually slept during the night (about once every 4-6 months) because I have energy during the day at don't hit my "zombie" time at noon where I have to lie down due to my absence of thinking abilities or emotional stability. :)

I've been sleeping better lately - which is so nice! (Keepin' it real) - My depression is pretty much completely gone thanks to St Johns Wort and a variety of other things. It feels so good to be alive again!

2. I purchased coconut oil
It smells wonderful and I can't wait to use it in place of all the other "bad" oils.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Five great things!

There are five fabulous things I've incorporated into my life that I want to scream out and share with all people...so, instead of screaming, I'm sharing it through my blog. The five things are:

1. Greensmoothiegirl.com (as I mentioned in my last entry)
We've been making these green smoothie shakes every morning. Tyra asks for seconds. They're delicious and are a good first step to providing our bodies with the nutrients we need to stay wonderfully healthy and alive.

The site doesn't just talk about green smoothies but it explains why we should change the way we eat and it helps us know how to do it as well. And it all sounds (and is) so delicious! All of the info. provided is from a woman named Robyn (who lives in Pleasant Grove) and the research she's been doing for 15 years! She has a great 12 step program!

Oooh, and check out this info. about coconut oil from her site - http://www.greensmoothiegirl.com/coconut-oil-health-benefits.html

2. Square Foot Gardening
I never thought I'd be much of a gardener. It just wasn't "my thing" or I simply don't have a "green thumb". But this "SFG" thing - I can do! And so can anyone! I can't wait to have a garden this year and to have the kids pick our own fresh fruits, veggies, and greens ( for our green drinks). I'm letting the kids have a garden of their own and I can tell that this is going to be a blast! Here's a link to "SFG". You can buy a used book from the used books on the Barnes and Noble site for $5.88 (that includes shipping).

http://www.squarefootgardening.com/

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/used/titleresults.asp?PEAN=&PRC=ALL&TTL=square+foot+gardening&CNT=

3. Kids Are Worth It!
This is a book I've been reading and I know that Heavenly Father lead me to its discovery. I borrowed it from a lady in the ward and almost gave it back several times because I simply wasn't getting to it but I finally picked it up and have been growing bit by bit as I read it.

It speaks of what kind of a family we may have come from (Brickwall, Jellyfish, or Backbone) and it helps us to be a "Backbone" family which is the ideal way to be. I love it and I can't say enough about it. If you're a flawless parent and your family runs perfectly, by all means, this book isn't for you but it's great for anyone else. ;) I figure that in order to fully comprehend and incorporate it's teachings into my life I'll need to read it once for every year I was raised in my extremely "brickwall" family... so I should end up reading this book 19 times.

If any of you ever read this book I'd like to know what kind of a family you came from and what changes you had to make to become better balanced. It's funny how the author says that a brickwall person and a jellyfish person attract one another...that's defninitley true in mine and John's relationship. But, I've realized how nice it is to have it that way - once we learn to work together!

4. America in Danger
This is another book I'd like to read. I have read excerpts from it and have read an article/interview from its LDS author... Sometimes I think we need a kick in the rear end to get us to "get our houses in order" like the leaders of the church have been telling us for years and years. The excerpts I read along with the article/interview did just that for me. Now I can't wait to read the full version. And I'm more than eager to get our food storage and supply completed!

5. Getting out of Debt
This year John and I have been making our plans on how to get out of debt and are about to have our year plan laid out. It's exciting to see the plans of debt elimination being laid out! Dave Ramsey is the "voice of financial wisdom" for many people and although I haven't thoroughly looked or read through his material (pat on the back for those of you who have) I felt even more motivated after reading his 7 steps. A couple of my friends and some family members have become his fans maybe you'll become a fan as well!

http://www.daveramsey.com/

Good day to all!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Clarifying my "thought"

Just to explain something...the point of the "profound" thought I had that, I felt, came from the spirit wasn't to have cops start paying good drivers $50 (although that is a great idea!) but it was the idea of rewarding good behavior by recognizing it and praising it and applying that "cop thought" to parenting. :)

Oh, and "keepin' it real", I'll open up to something not to get a pity party but in hopes that it may help someone else. I've been fighting depression...(I tend to deal with it around this time of the year) but I've run across a book titled, "The Mood Cure" that has really helped me understand a lot of things with how our bodies work and what nutrients and minerals our brains and bodies need in order to be well balanced...here's a small basic list:

1. Sleep (ha, ha, insomnia is something I've been struggling with for 6 years)
-Drink St Johns wort tea before going to bed
- Darken the house as the night begins (darkness produces melatonin which puts your body to sleep)
-Don't eat after 7pm - have a light snack if you need it
2. Omega 6's - can be taken by taking fish oil pills or integrate flax oil into you diet
3. Sun - no way around it we need sun
4. Exercise - no way around this one either
5. Cut out most sugars or addictive foods like chocolate...salsa is a good substitute to get the boost our bodies are craving
6. 5 HTP is great temporary intake to help your body naturally kick start your seratonin levels (if your body handles it well)
7. Eat health(ier)....greensmoothiegirl.com - I'm telling ya it's the way to go! (It's interesting that the mood cure coincides so well with what the "green smoothie girl" teaches).

Just keepin' it real :)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Under construction and...some thoughts

Either I've lost my sense of taste or this site is "under construction"...you decide. :) No, John has figured out how to work with the html code for this blog so now I get to create my blogs look - however I want it! John was playing with the options and has left me with how it is now...I still need to decide how I want it.

I had a thought the other day as I was driving. I'm pretty sure the spirit led me to its discovery. (It's a simple thought, really, but it was profound to me). I worried for a minute that a cop might have been around because I realized I was driving faster than I should have been. So, I slowed down. Then I thought, what if cops pulled people over because they had been watched or followed and found to be an excellent driver? And instead of handing over a ticket showing some outrageous balance you suddenly owed he handed you a check for $50!

Seriously, let's think about this. People would drive more politely and courteously, obeying the rules because they'd like to be noticed for being a good driver. I'd like to be! I'd try harder, knowing that I may be rewarded for my "good behavior".

This thought led me to something I've been thinking about doing. It stems from a book titled, "Positive Parenting" written by a Dr. Latham. Along with giving great wisdom and advice he also helps us by giving us even further assistance through assignments. (You can view his assignments by going to www.amiutah.org, click on Dr. Latham's lessons and view his lessons from there).

Assignment #1: Give positive attention to your family when they are doing things that are right. A soft pat on the back, a hug, a high five, or a "Way to go!" will nearly always assure the behavior will be repeated. For one hour, when most of your family is home, give yourself a mark for each positive interaction you have. Try to do it for each member of the family, and keep track of the data. Record any interesting experiences you may have.

Here's more: The second part of the assignment is to LEARN TO IGNORE AGE-TYPICAL, "JUNK" BEHAVIORS! Dr. Latham feels that about 95% of the things kids do that drive their parents crazy should not be given any attention at all. Just turn and walk away. Ignore it. Most likely, it is normal for the age and goes with the territory. When we jump into every argument, it gives them a great audience and encourages the performance. Ignoring such behaviors puts it on "extinction" and it will soon lessen. Then, when the battle is not raging, continue to teach what the right behavior is and watch for a time when they are doing well and comment on it.

Assignment #2
Walk away from a negative behavior. Temper tantrums, quarrels, etc. qualify as long as life or limb is not threatened! As soon as it has died down, watch for a time to compliment the person on working it out and doing the right thing. Try it. You have nothing to lose but a lot of unpleasant behaviors! Record any interesting findings below, or on the back of this page.

I often wonder, if Jesus were the parent of my children how would He be parenting them? It seems obvious to me that he wouldn't be standing over them waving his pointer finger at them threatening them if they act out again...I only know about this because I've seen other parents do it...I sure don't. :)

The cop thought made me realize how much I, even in my adulthood, would like to be rewarded or noticed for good behavior instead of ONLY being chastised and punished for "bad" behavior. How annoying is it to have someone watching you to see if you do something wrong and yet all the good things about you go unnoticed? I grew up that way and I hate it!

That's why cops are so annoying...they do good things and are a necessary part of our society but isn't it frustrating to have someone looking for your flaws and imperfections instead of focusing on how well you followed the road rule one step behind or in front of your minor slip-up?

I believe in positive parenting. I remember an enrichment activity I went to a few months ago. We had the opportunity to listen to a mother of 11 (all temple married) children speak of how she raised her children. I asked her what she did when her children fought. And she simply replied, "I just ignored it. That kind of behavior didn't deserve my attention."

Otherwise she was constantly there. Giving praises, sharing, giving love, teaching through simple lessons and creating opportunities for her children to win...sorry to keep rambling but this story is cute. One day her and her son were driving somewhere. She said out loud, "Oh no!" And her son curiously asks, "What?" She answered, "We need more gas and I forgot my purse at home. I don't know if we'll make it to the gas station." Her son became concerned and so she asked him to say a prayer that they'll make it to their destination. Low and behold they made it to a gas station and her son found her purse in the car, get this, in a spot close to his seat where she had placed it! She planned the whole thing! She says that to this day he thinks he is SOOO spiritual.

I'm not quite sure how I feel about setting up blatantly fictitious situations like that but it's cute and it gives me other ideas as how to set up situations where the child can "win" and come away from it feeling like a winner.

Those are my thoughts...oh, that and I LOVE www.greensmoothiegirl.com. We've started drinking these green smoothies every morning and are changing our diet all together so that we may be more healthy, energetic, think more clearly and be more alive!

Life is good.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Awaking Emotion & Passion!

As a defiant teenager I'd shut myself in my bedroom, every now and then, for a couple hours at a time and nothing could remove me from that room. Would I be venting in my journal? Listening to noisy music? Going through my wardrobe picking out my outfits for the rest of the week? Browsing through Teen magazines?

No, I'd place one of my favorite CD's into my stereo and let the speakers blare the melodic music from the full production of the Phantom of the Opera. I would sing along, listen intently, be moved, and maybe cry.

I decided to share this secret love affair of mine with the kids today. We made some popcorn, sat on the living room floor and pushed play. For the first half hour Tyra couldn't seem to refrain from asking, "Why isn't there a movie for it?" or "Are we going to sit here the whole time?" But as the musical play went on and I continually verbalized the story behind all the singing they grew increasingly interested.

When Christine visits her fathers grave and sings of wishing he was somehow there again I found Tyra wiping a multitude of tears from her eyes. I worried if I had over loaded her senses. But we didn't give up and listened to the whole production - which is almost 2 hours long.

In the final scene the Phantom, Christine and Raoul are in the Phantoms hideout and are singing simultaneously, yet in perfect intervals, expressing their most intensely heartfelt feelings and desires. The Phantom is upset and is demanding Christine to make a choice between the Phantom or Raoul. If she chooses Raoul he'll kill him. Yet, if she chooses the Phantom she'll live a life full of twisted darkness. Christine is singing to the Phantom about how he has deceived her and Raoul is apologetically singing to Christine for putting her in this predicament by coming to the Phantoms lair.

All quiets down and Christine's clear voice sings the words "...God give me strength" and she kisses this hapless Phantom character, whose whole life was filled with ugliness, darkness and unkindness though, secretly, he always yearned for beauty and love. This act of love weakens his frame and he collapses to the ground.

The mob, who are out searching for the Phantom to put an end to his life, are heard coming closer in the background. The Phantom, with sudden change of heart, tells Christine and Raoul to leave and forget about him, with a soft tone in his voice. They hesitate as they don't know quite what to do. Only when the Phantom raises his voice and cries, "Leave me!" do they obey him and run away together.

All music stills and a simple musical box lightly tinkles the silvery tune to the Masquerade song, "...hide your face so the world will never know you..." In the background the Phantom hears Christine and Raoul making promises of love and commitment to one another...knowing he'll never be a part of this loving relationship he's allowed to take place.

Ty and I were both crying. Tears streaming, emotions going, hearts aching. As I discussed with Tyra the emotions we had felt, I wondered some things...

I wondered if there aren't enough people on the Earth willing to feel. I wondered if too many hearts are closed, numb, distracted, or hardened - hindering the ability to feel emotion. I wondered at the amount of emotion, energy, enthusiasm, and awareness that would arise and thrive in the core of all people if everyone took the time to continually experience a classic play, book, musical, or expression of art.

Emotions arouse dormant personal passions. Those charged passions naturally turn into self-motivation which is used towards fulfilling good purposes for each of our individual mission(s) on this earth.

Let's add more choice events in our life that create emotions which bring about productive results!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Lifelong Course to Excellence

I am constantly tuning and tweaking my character to fit who I want to be, who I know I should be and who I know I can be. This constant effort can be overwhelming but by taking on a more optimistic view I have recognized a "love for life and it's challenges and pleasures."

Pres Hinckley said, "My life has been rich because it has been filled with problems to solve and associations to savor." I'd like to adopt his outlook into my own life. There is someone whom I know the Lord needs me to be. By taking the arduous path to become that person, I know I can bless the lives of those in my realm of influence. Be it my family, friends or strangers - it'll be worth every step.

Pres. Hinckley also said, "We are in a constant search for excellence. That search must be continuous and never-ending. It must be consuming and unrelenting. As a nation and as a people, we will not rise to a position of excellence before the world until we have begun to restore and rebuild a foundation of moral, ethical, and spiritual strength."

What do we feel driven to improve? Heavenly Father has a path of improvement ready for all of us. Whether it be a book we are lead to read, a talk we feel inspired to listen to, a value we feel the need to focus and improve upon or a person we need to accept into our life.

By simply listening to the spirit and taking the subtle guidances He gives us, we'll continue on our lifelong progression to excellence.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Back in the game!

Phew! I took a dip there for a moment but I feel that I'm back in the game. As a good friend of mine says, "There is no looking back....Onward and upward!" And that's just where I intend to go.

What a great sister!

I asked Ty if she'd watch Millie for a minute while I did something. When I went back downstairs I saw Tyra in the "craft closet". I thought she had decided to ditch having to take care of Millie but instead, to my pleasant surprise, Tyra told me that her and Millie were making crafts together. It was cute to find them like this.

Successfully Healthy Day


I made my first successful loaf of bread today! It's even approved by ETHAN!!! John and I had to laugh earlier today when the kids asked for granola and flax seeds as snacks. I don't mind the kids snacking on food like that!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Needed Comfort

My life is but a weaving between God and me,
I do not choose the colors, He worketh steadily,
Oftimes He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper, and I the underside.

Not till the loom is silent, and shuttles cease to fly,
Will God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful in the skillful Weaver's hand,
As the threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned.
-Anonymous
(From the book, "Tramp for the Lord" by Corrie Ten Boom)

I will always doubt my ability to homeschool my children or doubt my ability to do many great things I feel driven to do. But I need to remember the answers I receive and go forward with faith.

As the poem says, I need to remember that the Lord has the upper and I the underside.