"Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to let you in."

-- Robert Frost

Saturday, April 19, 2014

easter with meaning

"Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, 
having a perfect brightness of hope and a love of God and of all men..." 
2 Nephi 31: 18-20

Throughout the week we've worked on our Easter Tradition.

I told the kids a story about a hike I took once while camping. How I climbed an unmarked hill to get to the hiking trial. Once on the trail, I knew where to go.  However, on the way back down I couldn't find the exact spot where I'd transversed the hill. My guess brought me out of the woods on the far side of the camp. I'd missed my destination just by a simple miscalculated error.

We read the scripture above in it's entirety.

We talked about the path we walk every day. We emphasized how the steps we want to take on that daily path should be be like our Savior who showed us exactly where to go and how to walk it so we wouldn't miss our mark.

Then we began our pinup of "steps" to take each day working toward this holiday weekend .. and hopefully remembering them always. 

I love this holiday. I love how it brings our family together.

I love these little feet ... even the backwards ones ;)

And the ones making their own walk a little more independently so they'll be on the wall beside his chair at the kitchen table  :)

Mostly, I love everything that Easter means to me and my heart because He lived.

Happy Easter to you and yours!
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Thursday, April 17, 2014

peter pan

"Middle school plays are awesome," Newel said leaning over to me as we cracked up over Captain Hook tossing this malfunctioning mustache over board with gusto.

And they are.

Less inhibitions, perhaps?

Janie worked so hard to audition for Peter Pan. We had that little three line tune so stuck in our brains, we woke up singing it in our dreams. At least, I did.

Boy oh, boy did she ever have the best time at it. She came out of each practice glowing, loving every bit as an Indian Brave.

Most of all, my heart nearly burst at the numbers of family friends who came to see her, taking time out of their busy lives to watch, hug my girl at the end ... even bring her flowers in congratulations. 

I'm not sure I could even express what it meant to that gal of mine, that another adult or teenager other than family would come and sit and cheer her on. 

Little acts of such kindness set the stage for who we become.

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

She didn't need me.

Nor ... in her independence ... did she want me.

Which made my heart swell up (and hurt a little, too).

Because everything is as it should be, whether I like it or not.

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Sunday, April 6, 2014

like .. only my second favorite weekend ever

I can see how it might seem a bit odd that members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, would absolutely crave absorbing eight hours (or more for our young men) of faith promoting, inspirational messages that anchor us deeper in a desire to be like the Savior.  

But man, o man, is it amazing.

The buildup. The filled heart. The clear mind. The desire to go forward. To do more. To be more. To love better.

It's like a giant breath in my sails.

To last another six months until we do it all over again.
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Thursday, April 3, 2014

you are what you think

Christian likes to come home from school and hit the treadmill. It unwinds his day. He runs hard and he runs far. Sometimes, I hear that thing going on and on for what seems like a really long time. So I intervene.

I come around the corner and he's plugging away .. with the belt at a decent incline and his hands jammed in the pockets of his shorts.

"Not the best way to run!" I call.

"What??" he hollers breathlessly, headphones still in his ears. I touch mine and he pulls out an ear bud.

"Running with your hands in your pockets .. not the best way to run. If you face plant tripping on your shoelaces ..." at least after all these years he's finally learned to tie them.

"You've been down here a long time." I say, peering around at the treadmill's dashboard stats. 7.5 miles at 5.6 run with 75% incline.

"Don't you think you've had enough?"

I can't even begin to imagine that kind of run. "Sorry, I lost track of the time," he sucks in a big breath and hops off looking suddenly easily un-winded.

Still can't imagine it. My brain would scream hateful thoughts at myself should I even try.

"How do you do that?" I ask on the way back up, "What can you possible be thinking to produce such motivation??"

I'm genuine. I'd really love to know the secret. The rhythm of my feet chant in the moment, 'Don't like this, Don't like this, Don't like this' no matter how much distraction I attempt to use in over-ride.

"Well ..." he pauses at the stair top to inhale one last breath, "Mostly ... I think about candy ... and whether or not they'll be enough candy selections at the gas station the next time I go in ... and how much money I might need to earn to buy all the candy I could want if they had it ... like big league chew .. and swedish fish ... and zebra striped gum ... " and he continues trailing off up the stairs.

Oh, to be an uncomplicated fifteen year old boy.

It's later and I'm shoving dishes into the dishwasher. Cleaning a kitchen left over-turned by afternoon snack making. There's frustration behind it because by now these folks should know better. But there's homework stacks and I'm allowing the slide.

Still, there's gripe in my voice as I call the 6'3" boy in to take out the trash for the third time.

"Are you irritated, Mom?" he asks in apologetic tones.

"How could you tell?" I can't help the squint and smile approach as his astute concern melts my momentary irritant.

He pauses at the garage door trash bag in hand, "You know, Mom ... Maybe you should try thinking about candy ..." and the door closes behind him.

I shake my head at uncomplicated simplicity.

Amid the smart mouth truth of it.

That moments in motherhood's rougher run can come with a sweet solution of affectionate reflection. And when it doesn't .. just think of candy.
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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

spring break

I feel so grateful that we are able to escape with our little people as often as we do.

It is always a reminder that I should give the projects, jobs and responsibilities of life a little less weight so I can feel this way all of the time.

For a just a bit, we set aside the carpools, the practices, the schedules, the regular chores, the bedtime routines, the homework, the obligations, the to-do lists ... and I can just be the mom next to this great dad.

Who, by the way, we missed incredibly through the last six weeks of back to back business travel. 

We could not get enough of him.

His birthday fell in the middle of our spring break and we couldn't have been more delighted to spend time with him doing what he loves best.

I didn't worry so much about being behind a camera.

There's no camera in the world that could capture how my heart skips a beat watching all my little ones follow .. or race ..  him down a ski slope, anyway.

Mushy as that sounds, we love him and hope his birthday amid the hoopla was great.

It was certainly nice to have him back with us.

And though I know that life can't be just one big vacation all of the time ...

And all that stuff that keeps my brain half-preoccupied on a regular basis will creep back in the minute the suitcases hit the entry hall ...

I count my blessings every day through all of the daily weight, that I get to be their mother along side my best friend in the world.

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