Monthly Archives: January 2014

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Photo Club Week Four: Home

One of the most exciting things about this photo club is the opportunity to really want to push myself to become better at photography. But this week, eh, I was actually a day over on my submission and was so rushed and hurried, that I didn’t think enough about a provoking picture.  And if I really want to become better I really ought to read my camera manual or watch some tutorials or something. However, in my defense there has been a lot going on over here, which I will share with yous later this week. 

All that aside, if home is where your heart is, with this little girly on my lap I am right at home :)

My thought was sort of take it in my kids room cuz I spend a lot of time in there, or ideally I would love to spend a lot of time in there, playing with them.  But this could just be any old room in the house the way I did it. Whatevs. 

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Photo Club Week Three: Just You

Just You

You don’t really get much more “just me” than early in the morning. I remember as a teen having 9:00 a.m. church, seeing the young mothers in the ward and thinking, “Really? They really can’t just run a brush through their hair or put on a splash of make up? Is it really that hard to out yourself together every morning?”

Well I guess I am here to say, yeah, it is. I am at a point where I only brush my hair before I shower so I don’t pull half of it out, and I only shower when I can REALLY smell myself, and makeup, well that is reserved for special occasions like church and girls night out or maybe, just maybe, for date night. And by makeup I mean I try to cover up any blemishes and a quick brush of mascara.

Anyway this is how I rush out of the house every morning at 7:00 a.m. to get Kacen to his school bus. O-naturale. Just me and my thoughts.

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Runny Noses and Nursery


(Some terminology is specific to my religious congregation if you are not LDS I hope that you can apply this to your congregation or social circles as well)
Having sick kids in the house sure can be exhausting. Your 1 or 3 year-old is sleeping like a newborn, waking every two hours because they are coughing, congested, wheezing and crying. Then not to mention you still have to get up and carry on, every day like the day before. 
It sure is tough to know when and where it is appropriate to take your kids when they are in such a state. I have heard some women express how frustrating it is for them when mothers and fathers bring sick children into public places, especially church. And while I do try my best to keep my sick kids home when I can, I cannot help but feel that the side of the story from the parents of sick children who take them into public places needs to be viewed with more compassion.
Doesn’t do justice to how sick she has been, but there are boogers on them there cheeks.
There are a variety of reasons why a mother may bring a sick child to church, some may seem selfish or inconsiderate but possibly you have not encountered enough desperate moms to understand. Mothers that suffer from depression, who have non-supportive/non-existent husbands, who don’t have close family to rely on or even more sadly not one friend at church to rely on, who need to come to church with their weekly ride to meet with the bishop (clergy) to receive a check to feed their sick and hungry children, who have not been able to take the sacrament for years and that glorious day has come, who are investigating the church (or coming back to Christ or coming to know Christ) and need to be there that day because they have been prompted by the Lord to be there, these women feel they need to be at church, sick child in tow or not.
I feel most of us moms are doing the best we can, and most of us are hanging on by a thread. Rather than us women ganging up on all the moms who have ever made the call to take a child who is sick out of the house, let’s gang up to find a way to alleviate their burdens, to be good friends, and get to know these women better and understand their point of view. Then lovingly and gently introduce them to your view points on children’s health.
An experience I had four years ago dramatically altered my view on children’s health.
My son was born four years ago in February. I lived in Rexburg Idaho, a known stewing pot for RSV and I was a little paranoid about my son’s health. My older sisters, who were also my closest confidants and best friends, were due to visit me and my new bundle of joy. Micah, the oldest, flew in from Georgia for two weeks. K’Leena, a new mother herself, drove up from Utah. When K’Leena arrived I noticed her young daughter had a runny nose. I began to feel anxious that my new little one would get this runny nose and his life would be miserable.
K’Leena was staying with an aunt in a nearby city and I asked her not to come back with her daughter again unless she got better. Seriously one of the biggest regrets of my adult life, I kept my own sister and her sick baby at bay because of my paranoia. It only took a couple of hours for the full measure of what I did to be realized. Unknown to us, K’Leena, a five year career woman was struggling from postpartum depression being a new mother and being home all of the time, on top of that her husband had decided the day before to quit his stable well-paying job to go back to school, with no other job prospect lined up, meaning they would lose their home. She was also feeling some residual animosity from a similar situation with my sister Micah. What I did pretty much broke my sister’s heart, she needed us, her sisters, and because I did not want to be put out with having a sick child I turned a blind eye to her needs. Our relationship has begun to heal but it is a slow process. If there was any way to take back what I did, I would easily endure having a sick baby rather than the chasm that entered our lifelong friendship.
I would hate for any one of you who feel frustrated by this same sort of situation to inadvertently or irreversibly break a mother who is just doing her best. The state of a young mother is a fragile thing. We as women need each other; we need to build each other up.
There are a lot of things in this world we can change, the easiest by far, is ourselves; the hardest, is other people.  
After my situation with my sister I decided to change my mind frame. I now just see childhood as a time where runny noses are frequent, where kids get sick and get better. And when they are sick and I am up in the middle of the night for the fifth time cuddling my 18 month old, I try to enjoy that time looking at my sweetheart. Most people with healthy immune systems will not be severely harmed by common viruses, colds, flus, stomach bugs, etc.
I am not propagating irresponsibility with children and illness but I am just hoping to shed some compassion on the hundreds of parents who take their sick children out. And I ask that you please be cautious about what you post on Facebook especially when it comes to peoples actions at church. Your burst of frustration could really make a mother or father feel like a failure in a role they are doing the best they can in.
Christ bore our burdens and commands us to be like him, if the burden we need to bare is having our children be sick for someone else to worship God on a Sunday, perhaps that is ok. .
Wishing you and all your runny-nosed little ones a healthy winter.
Love,
Heather
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Photo Club Week Two: Routine

Bedtime Stories

For some noon may signal lunch time, for me it signals 6 hours of being awake and only 7 more hours before bed time. I wish I wasn’t but I am a total bed-time-count-downer. Maybe I should try a little harder to not look forward to bedtime so much this year.

Probably one of my favorite parts of our daily routine is bedtime stories. Kacen and Andie have finally taken to letting me read to them so it makes this time even more enjoyable. When Ky is home he loves to take part in this time with us so it really is some special family time. We aren’t much for tradition or routine but the routine of story, prayers and songs has been in place since nearly day one with Kace and I hope it continues as long as our children will take it. 

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Bad Mom Moment: Leaving My Kid Home

This weeks second runner up for worst mom moment went something like this:

We had four missionaries from our church over for dinner and after we all started eating I noticed that Kacen wasn’t eating and was playing with his cousins, so of course I yell over to my child sitting at the kids table to “stop playing and eat dinner!” Three minutes later I noticed he still wasn’t eating and was asking for bread I yell again, “No bread until you eat all your noodles and veggies.” His five-year-old cousin sitting next to him quickly replied, “he doesn’t have any food.” Shocked I look down and see his full plate of food that I dished up still sitting on the table by me, I jokingly told our guests, “My book on parenting will be out soon, I’ll send you a copy free, we have a whole chapter on withholding food.”

If I were to write a chapter on the next subject it would be called, “Leaving your sleeping child home, nearly alone, while you go shopping.”

I am sure there is no back story needed, but here it is anyway.

Earlier in the morning I had mentioned to no one in particular but just into the great void of the house “When Andie goes down for a nap we are going to the grocery store.” So when she was ready to sleep I laid her down and sort of in the back of my mind thought that my acknowledgment at the breakfast table to anyone who was listening in the house might have hit the ears of my mother-in-law who surely wouldn’t mind if my sister-in-law, Kacen and I left to go grocery shopping while Andie was napping. So we’re walking down the freezer isle mostly done with our shopping and I realized, you know I never actually told Valarie that we were leaving, I wonder if she even knows that Andie is there! I could not believe this giant lapse in my child’s safety!

Yeah when we got home Valarie had no idea that Andie had been there, but luckily Andie slept for a nice long time.

Yep bad mom moment fo sho.

I am sure others have had moments like this and I would love to hear funny stories but please don’t leave anything legally incriminating in the comments.

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Photography Club! Week One: Beginnings

Have you ever noticed that in most families their aren’t as many candid shots of mamas with their kids? I think often we take pictures of the things around us but we don’t always get timelocked into those photos and experiences. My sister-in-law joined a Facebook Photography Club aimed at changing this and invited me to join to. What we do is every week we post a photo based on the theme for that week, the only rule is you must be in the photo. So for 52 weeks I will be posting my submission.

Week One: Beginnings


My hubster got this fancy shmancy camera for our Christmas gift. My new beginning is learning how to use it.

Anyone else have a new beginning this year?

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Doing Something I Did Before I Had Kids: Backyard Jam Sesh

Last week the kids, Kyle and I went down to Baltimore with my mother-in-law. On our way home a bad winter storm was rolling in. It took us three hours to drive what normal takes a little over one hour. As we pulled into the driveway at 11:00 p.m. I said, “Well I am gonna go get my skis and hit the back yard.” Valarie replied, “You know the snow will be here tomorrow.” “I can go then too,” I said.

I really love skiing and snowboarding. I really love using this magnificent body of mind for physical activity.
 
Before I had kids skiing and snowboarding was a huge part of my winter. I worked at a ski resort for three years and when we weren’t at the resort we were just at parks around town building kickers to jump off.


Lately our are has been getting some snow so I  have taken the opprotunity to head out in the backyard for a little fun.

It has been a huge blast just getting out even late at night just to do what I used to. But the funnest part has actually been teaching little Kacer-roo how to ski. He has been doing pretty well and we are really excited to teach our kids to ski and hope to make skiing and snowboarding a integral part of every winter. I didn’t learn to snowboard until I was an adult and we really hope we can get our kids out there early so they can enjoy this life long sport.

Have any of you been doing things you used to do before you had kids?