Thursday, February 21, 2013

A hoppin' good time...

 We broke the mold for our FHE's on Monday and took our family to a trampoline park we had been hearing so much about.
It lived every bit up to its expectations from the kids and us parents.  It was a blast.
We did an hour long jump session, and I tell you it was tough for these guys to sit back and wait until their hour started.  Drew was constantly counting down the minutes....
 There was a trampoline dodgeball section, an area for the kids, foam pits, and just tons of trampoline space.  The kids were in heaven.
 In the foam pit....
 Jed and I took turns with the big and little kids, so most of my pictures were of the little ones, because that is when I wasn't jumping.
But these two little girls were running and jumping nonstop for the complete hour.
 getting sucked into the foam pit...

 Hannah is rescuing Lily from the pit monster.
Lily was running from the trampolines towards the foam pit at one point, she prepped and launched herself into the air and came just short of the foam pit and landed square on her bottom on that blue was sad....
 The dodgeball game that was going on when we got there was pretty intense, there were tons of people involved, and it didn't look very inviting.  Eventually it died down, and we all went in and played that for a little bit.
 It was fun to watch the bigger kids get more and more brave as the night went on with the tricks they did into the foam pits.  We had fun watching the playback feature of us too.
It wasn't all fun and games for this girl...
  "the best night ever" according to some...  :)  I had a hard time getting Hannah to take her wrist band off...
It was a pretty fun FHE.


I noticed I've been posting a lot about events/celebrations lately, and while that is all fine and good and we totally love those times....I also realize it doesn't give the whole story.  We don't party all the time, or go on amazing excursions every week, and we don't have purely kind words floating in the air in our home.  I feel like especially lately, I've had some stretching experiences that have made me realize, I've got so much to learn.
I've been learning to hold back and let my kids stumble and learn lessons on their own.  Man, that is hard.  Instinct just makes me want to jump right in and make everything perfect, but I know that is not the best thing.  There have been some hard lessons to learn, but experience is the best teacher.  Then talking things through from there and let them lead the discussion and tell me what they've learned, that is best.  I feel so humbled in ways as a parent, and totally realize and am grateful for the fact that we are not left to be parents all on our own.  There is a greater Source of wisdom, One who knows my children better than I, and the amazing thing is that He cares and helps when you don't have any idea which way to go.  Does that mean it is easy?  No.  Does that mean that answers come immediately when you think you need them?  Not necessarily, but I'm grateful that we're left to struggle seemingly on our own for answers, but I know if I have a humble heart I'm guided more than I even know.
The bottom line is I love my children, with my whole heart.  I want them to blossom into happy, capable, responsible adults.  I want them to know their mom loves them every step of the way, even when I'm exasperated and on my last straw.  I realize it is going to be tough.  It can be a challenge every day to try to do what is best for each child. I'm so grateful for a great spouse whom I lean on for help a lot.  I'm so grateful he patiently listens to my concerns and worries and helps me think things through. 
Life is good, very good. I know being a mom is the most important work I could ever do, and it is serious work.  ;)  And even though there are challenges, life is sweet and there are "flecks of gold" everywhere.
I still love this quote, it's one of my favorites, from M. Russel Ballard, ". . .Recognize that the joy of motherhood comes in moments. There will be hard times and frustrating times. But amid the challenges, there will be shining moments of joy and satisfaction."

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Love Day Celebration

 Valentine's Day is a pretty fun holiday if you ask me.  In the beginning of the month of love we cut out several construction paper hearts and everyone in the family writes each other a valentine.  Then we decorate the house with our lovey notes.  I tell you, I felt like we really needed those little notes of love to adorn the house.  There have been several quarrels around here lately....
 We can't ever forget about the treat.  Heart shaped cinnamon rolls...these are so divine...and there is major anticipation on everyone's part to sink teeth into those puppies.
 It really is one of my favorite things to have things like this all around the house.
 Hannah always calls me the best mom in the world, so I always call her the best Hannah in the whole world.  She had her dad record all of the valentine's she dictated to him and they all said something to the tune of "you're the best fill in family member's name here in the whole world."  It was pretty cute.
 Lily did her very own valentines.

Then on to the tastiest part:

 I'm also glad to see my children are developing a sense of humor:

 That was from Madelyn to her dad.... ;)

Then on Valentine's morning, we had heart shaped waffles and pink milk and a surprise for the kids, as we always do.  
I love traditions...
 Madelyn had lazy day at school, so she got to wear her PJ's.  She wanted to have a heart in her hair, because other girls had fancy heart hair do's....
I'm not usually into doing time consuming hair do's on my girls, after all I have several heads of hair to do.  But I quickly came up with a simple and quick heart idea that satiated the fancy hair desire.
 Those are Lily and Hannah's hearts.  Nice and easy.  :)  Win.
Jed surprised me with a gift I was not at all nice.  Then we had a fancy dinner with our family right after having my first den meeting (that I was worried about all day) at my house.  The girls helped me with dessert prep the day before:  chocolate strawberries and chocolate hearts to ease the dinner prep a little.  It was a busy/great day.