My faith

I'm a Mormon.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Family Night Monday

Here is the family night lesson for this week:
Family Home Evening Outline

Opening Song: Let us oft speak kind words
Opening Prayer:

1. Family Gratitude Journal (Every week we begin by writing something that each person is grateful for)
2. Lesson: “Let us oft speak kind words to each other”
Opening: What kind of words should we say to each other? (List words)
Talk about using kind words, giving compliments,
*While the little ones draw on the word list, Read “Tongue of Angels” by Elder Holland
*Each person make a goal of how we can speak more kindly
*Heart Chart. This is a chart that Says "Let us oft speak kind words to eachother and has heart all around it. Throughout the week, whenever anyone says a kind word or speaks in a kind tone, they get to fill in a heart. The goal is to have all the hearts filled in by next week. (Let me know if you want me to email the one I made to print out, I'd be glad to

3. *Family Cultural Activity: Classical music (Dad chooses), and play instruments or sing together.

Closing Song: Love is Spoken Here

Closing Prayer:
*Every week we try to have a cultural experiences: art, good music, poetry, literature, etc. It's a lot of fun!

D week Learning Activities

D week!

DD1 Has a hard time with D, she always calls it B. We're just working on capital letters right now, but I'm excited! I'm going to try this on a Daily Schedule:

Introduce Letter D with big foam letter. (If you don't have foam letters, you can just print off a big Letter D). Have her use beans to put all around the outside of the letter D.
Scripture Verse: 2 Ne 4:15 My soul delighteth in the scriptures
Number 4: draw, sort beans used in above activity into groups of 4

Use play dough to make letter D. (She loved this, so we're doing it again.) Also, we'll try and sculpt a dinosaur!
Practice scripture verse & 2nd Article of Faith
Play connect 4

Story time at the Library

Dinosaur day. Read: How do Dinosaurs clean their rooms, and How do Dinosaurs play with their friends. Also read a non-fiction picture book about Dinosaurs.

Friday: Fun-filled Friday! Dance DAY! Stay tuned on Thursday for Details! It's going to be a blog hop!

An important message

As a mother of daughters, I am often concerned with how I will teach them to live virtuous lives.

I think THIS talk by President Monson will be a great guide to me

Saturday, February 27, 2010


I think I've been avoiding this topic for a while. Like since I typed up DD2's birth story. (found HERE)

Recently I've wondered why I wanted to have a natural childbirth. What WAS I thinking? Why would anyone do that? It's insane! Then I read a birth story (this friend had an epidural and had a great birth, which is wonderful!) and I remembered a few things.

First, I was in charge of my birth. I got to decide to break my water (which sped things up ALOT! YAY!) I got to move, eat, drink, bathe, squat, and do whatever I wanted to help me cope with the intensity of my labor. It really wasn't horrible...until I started pushing. That was torture. But it's fuzzy now.

After DD2 was born, I IMMEDIATELY held her. Oddly enough, I find it so tragic to read stories of babies being born and then, for no medical reason, being whisked away for 10 minutes, receiving stinging eye drops, being wiped down and wrapped up, and then handed to their mothers. That's what happened with DD1. I Just. Wanted. To. Hold. Her. With DD2, our immediate contact is what made everything worth it. I LOVE that memory of holding her, nursing her for 30 minutes, and then being willing to let her go with the nurse and her dad to get cleaned up. But even still, she was gone for 2 hours after that. I wanted her back.

So, I guess my reasons for natural childbirth have evolved. I don't think the actual exerience of giving birth was any more fulfilling by doing it naturally, but I relished the feeling of control, and I treasure the memories of holding my sweet, brand new baby right up to me.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I have 3 sisters...

….Well, actually I have 6, 3 from my mom and 3 from other moms. But this post is just about 3 of them.

My oldest sister is a gem. She is beautiful and kind. Her quest for perfection leaves her a bit disappointed at times, but not because she isn’t wonderful. It’s more that she is very hard on herself. This dear one longs to have one of the greatest blessings; that of eternal marriage. Yet, despite how wonderful a wife she would be, for some reason this blessing has not yet been realized.

The next sister, who I also love dearly, received some devastating news 2 years ago. She found out that she would not bear children in this life. When she told me the news I cried for her. I had just had my own dear daughter and I partly worried she would hate me, but mostly worried that this trial was too much to ask. Fortunately I was wrong to worry about either of those.

I have already written about my 3rd sister, whose sweet Scotlin went to Heaven 3 months ago today. I think about him every day, I think about her every day. I hold my Sweet C and wonder why God chose to take her baby when I get to keep mine. I don’t really understand it. It doesn’t make sense.

None of it really makes any sense to me. WHY do my dear sisters have to go through these trials? Why are their arms & hearts aching for what Heavenly Father has withheld? How can I begin to understand what they are going through?

Elder Maxwell once said that “why” is really an expression of resentment. I don’t resent Heavenly Father. In fact, I feel that the fact that my sisters are facing these trials shows that Heavenly Father trusts them. Nor am I worried that He doesn’t trust me, as my life is fairly easy right now. I know that my trials will come. And when they do, I know that my sisters will wrap their arms around me and cry with me.

It has been amazing though. Even though she is unmarried, Staci serves and loves and lives a full life. She isn’t putting things off, but seems determined to prove to herself that she is worthy of all the blessings Heavenly Father has in store for her. Julie has transformed into this powerful, faithful woman. She still has bad days, but she knows that through the blessing of adoption, her family will be created, and that she will not miss out on any experience that is important to her. Whitney is also a wonder. I know she hates it when people tell her how strong she is. I know she has days when she falls apart and her arms ache to hold her dear Son. I know she doesn’t know WHY this happened. But she knows that it will be alright.

I love my 3 sisters, (and the other 3 too). And I know that God has a plan for each of us. He also has a gift: Eternal life. And if we can love each other and endure, we will receive all that he has in store for us!

The Gift of Giving life

A friend's story was featured on this blog. I liked it, so I wanted to share. It is true that God gives us charge of these little ones, and He will help us. "I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them."

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I have to be honest. Sometimes I look at friends who seem "busy" and think "I'm not that busy. I just play with kids and clean the house." Sometimes I get little pangs that maybe I should be doing something more with my life. Occassionally I wonder what my life would be like if it hadn't been my main goal to be a mom. Would I have gone into medicine and become a successful surgeon? Would I have gone into business and be rolling in wealth? Perhaps law and politics would have attracted me?

Because I only ever wanted to be a mom, I chose a field that I felt would best prepare me for life as a mother: teaching. Sometimes I think about my former 5th grade students. Little Timmy who irked the heck out of me, but was so cute. Ruben, who I desperately want to clone and have for my own son. Kaylee, who was sweet and intelligent. Savon, who I really just never learned to like. (I should have tried harder with that one.)

Then I think about my current pupils. My sweet toddler who wants me to hide with her. Who loves to watch movies and eat grapes and take all her toys out of the box so she can take a "bath." My dear little 5 month old who lights up every time I pick her up. Who giggles when I nibble on her tummy and cries when she's tired or hungry.

It's true that I may not know a lot about economics or scientific studies and their validity. The world of politics is completely mind-numbing to me. (Seriously, why can't our country figure stuff out?!)

But there is something I know. I am a mommy. And it's the best job ever!

This Week's preschool ideas.

I decided to do a 30 minute preschool with DD1 as soon as DD2 goes down for her morning nap. Well, it only works out if I've already showered. So we'll probably do preschool after lunch today, since my hair is still wet and DD1 is very absorbed in Dragon Tales at the moment!

Here are a few ideas that I am doing to teach the letter C & number 3:

*Make snakes out of play dough and shape them into the letter C & #3.

*Make a C page with pictures of things that start with C. Say the words together and write the words for your little one to see.

*Use a magnifying glass to find the letter C on your cereal box.

*Use play dough to make 3 balls. Count them together.

This week's social skill: Using kind words. Any ideas or hints for helping me with that other than talking about it and practicing? Maybe we can cut out hearts and write nice things to say on them. Or maybe every time she says something nice like "Baby so cute" or "Thank you" we can draw a heart on a poster? Hmmm, I'll have to stew over this one a little longer!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Agency and...puppets?

I wanted to write about two things that are completely unrelated.

First, I was thinking about Agency. We discussed this in Relief Society today, and one question that was brought up is how to teach our children about agency and choices/consequences. I mentioned that one thing I do is to allow chances to make simple choices often (which is encouraged by pretty much every parenting book I've ever read, from Love & Logic, to Positive Discipline, to Raising Optimistic Children.) But it got me thinking. Surely there is more we can do to directly teach our children about the Plan of Salvation and how agency plays a part in that.

We can read scriptures to them. Noah made a choice to follow Heavenly Father, whereas the wicked people of the Earth chose not to, and therefore drown in the flood. Nephi choose to obey God's commandments, instead of murmuring like his brothers, and he was blessed because of it.

I think our little children are easy to teach. They are sponges, and it isn't hard to teach even difficult Gospel topics by using stories from the scriptures. I'll probably think of more ways to teach this as I ponder more.
HOW do YOU teach your kids about agency?

PUPPETS! I recently hit the JACKPOT at Michael's. They have a dollar aisle, and I found some great hand puppets for $2 each. I also remembered my Elementary Ed theater class, where we learned, among many many other things, how to use puppets to help with classroom management. I LOVE when school helps in real life.

Tonight the lion puppet helped DD1 brush her teeth, dance, clean up toys, and get her jammies on. If you have a toddler/young child who has a hard time getting ready for bed/going somewhere/dinner/etc, get out a hand puppet, use a silly voice, and have fun doing it!!
What ideas do YOU have to use puppets in your daily routines?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Heather recently posted what she has learned about great homemade bread. Read it.

I wanted to share my recipe as well as what I do. I think good bread only has a few ingredient. But you need all of them or it won't work out!

warm water
oil (I like to use Olive Oil)
flour. (This recipe is for wheat-based flour, I should try it with oat or other flour!)

As Heather mentioned, you should activate your yeast first. I use Fleishman's yeast and it works fine, but I do keep it in the freezer.

I don't really have exact measurements, but I'll give approximations:

2 Cups warm water
1 Tbsp yeast
1 Tbsp sugar/honey (you can add more if you are making dough for something like cinnamon rolls)
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp oil
4-5 cups flour (I use 1-2 cups whole wheat, and the rest white flour)

First, mix your water, yeast, and sugar. Make sure your water isn't too hot, it will kill the yeast. If it burns you it's too hot, otherwise it's fine. If it isn't warm it won't activate the yeast as well. Dissolve the yeast and sugar, and let this sit for 5 minutes or so.

Add Salt and oil. Then, if you are using partial wheat flour, add that, mix well, and let it sit. 5 minutes should do the trick (the whole wheat flour needs more time to absorb the moisture, this will prevent you from adding too much flour).

Add the rest of your flour, one cup at a time. I don't have a mixer, so I knead my dough by hand. I don't think it's too inconvenient. My sister doesn't like having to clean her mixer, but cleaning your hands is no treat either. Make sure you take your rings off before you knead.

This is especially where Heather's post helped me. I would knead the dough for 1 whole minute, then if you need more flour, add 1/2 cup at a time until the dough isn't too sticky. You want to make sure you knead it enough. It's hard to explain how you know you've kneaded it enough. If you're using a mixer, it will pull away from the bowl. If not, just practice a few times and you'll get the hang of it.

I use this bread dough for a variety of things. Pizza, rolls, cinnamon rolls, breadsticks. It's pretty yummy! I should probably start making loaves for sandwiches and such.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Felt House Along

Fireflies and Jellybeans is doing a cute felt house project...
I plan on joining! You should check it out, it is way too cute!!

Monday, February 8, 2010

This week's learning activities.

Interested in what I'm planning to teach the toddler this week?

*2nd Article of faith.
We will use the song and recite it together at each meal, and at bedtime.

*Letter B
~Coloring sheets here.
~Letter B sorting game: Have a variety of objects, and sort them in to piles of "B" beginning sounds and "not B" beginning sounds
~Letter B treasure hunt around the house.
~Practice writing

*Number 2
~#2 coloring sheet.
~Sorting beans into groups of 2
~Finding things that come in pairs (shoes, parents, gloves, etc)
~Practice writing.

~Talk about sharing, give examples in Family Home Evening.
~Use a timer to practice taking turns when Molly & Michael come to play on Tuesday. (If there is a toy dispute, each child can play with the coveted toy for, say, 5 minutes).
~ Read "DW go to your room" and discuss why it's important to share.
Do you have any other books that you think are good sharing books? Any other ideas to teach these concepts? Let me know! Leave a comment!


I LOVE this blog, Summer creates the most original, adorable things. She also cooks and is going to have her 2nd little girl! Head over here to enter a great, girly giveaway!

Mission: nutrition

Mission: Family Nutrition

Melinda's parenting blog is one of my favorites! She is always inspiring.

Check out this post if you're interested in joining the family nutrition mission.

My Goals for this week include a shall and a shall not:

1. Eat 5 fruits and veggies every day. (I'm pretty close most days, but I am going to try and perfect this.

2. Limit treats to 1 small serving a day or less. (Like avoiding the large bag of peanut M&M's I consumed yesterday evening...)

I'm pretty excited. I'll do a daily update to help with my accountability, but feel free to join in the fun! Oh, and I'm only making these goals for myself and the toddler, since the baby exclusively nurses and DH is only home like 2 waking hours a day or less. And I can't control what he does... ha ha!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

I was tagged

This was a good one, it got me thinking, which is a good thing. My friend Heatherlady, who is an inspiration to me, tagged me to blog about 5 THINGS that are treasures or that I couldn't live without. These things can't be kids, food, but objects that you love.

So here are my five treasures, in no particular order.

1. Temple recommend. For those of you who are unfamiliar with LDS temples, they are a place where we are not only married for eternity, but where we learn more about the purpose of life and also make sacred covenants to follow God. It is a beautiful, holy, reverent place. A temple recommend allows the holder to enter the temple. One must be a baptized member of the LDS church, AND live the standards of the church.

2. My wedding dress. Nope, this is not the dress I paid $800 to take pictures in and wear to my reception, this is the dress I knelt at the alter in. The dress I wore when I was sealed to my husband so that our marriage could endure beyond this life. I wear it every time I go to the temple now. :)

3. My computer. Oh, what a great machine! This is the object I use to find recipes, crochet patterns, and ideas about parenting. The place where I scrapbook memories and post my thoughts for anyone to read. I listen to music, watch LOST, read General Conference talks, and write in my journal.

4. My crock pot. You would not believe the number of delicious concoctions I have come up with! And to be honest, there have been a few that my 2 year old would call "di-custing!" But I love to experiment. This website has fueled my obsession!

5. There is only 1 other object I would try to rescue from my home if it were on fire, and that would have to be my scriptures. I'm not trying to copy Heatherlady, but honestly, everything else is replaceable.

I tag:
1. Aunt Jewey
2. Alyssa
3. Jenny
4. Julie Carlson (I almost typed Cooper...)
5. And YOU! :)

The Good Enough Mother . Issues and Advice . PBS Parents | PBS

The Good Enough Mother . Issues and Advice . PBS Parents PBS

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Mommy melt-down

Yesterday I almost called my mom and begged her to come get me and let me stay at her house for the week. But I couldn't. There are lots of reasons.

Because I'm the Mommy, and I'm not supposed to wish I wasn't the Mommy...ever!

Because being a Mommy is the best job in the universe. How can I explain to people who long to have this job that it isn't peachy 100% of the time?

Because Mommies aren't supposed to need their Mommy.

Because I labor under the delusion that I have to try and be "Super Mommy" all the time.

Because I felt guilty for wanting a break from Mommyhood.

Because I convinced myself that since I'm going to my Mom's on Thursday I should just stick it out.

Because my house was a disaster and if I left, no one would clean it up.

Because instead I just cried. My sweet girl asked "Mommy sad?" Luckily she knows what being sad feels like, so she was the perfect person to comfort me.

I really DO love my job, but I think, especially with how young my kids are, I've got to find a balance between trying to be the "perfect" mom, and taking time for myself so that I have something left to give my children. Sometimes I get caught up in worrying that if I do one thing "wrong," then my children will be irreversably messed up. When those thoughts come I fail to remember that I am not alone in this challenge of motherhood. In fact, my best ally is the source of all wisdom, strength, and love.

So tomorrow, when I'm tired of laundry (which I DID wash, but DIDN'T fold today), screaming babies, or reading "Alice the Fairy," I will take a deep breath, say a prayer, and maybe just call my mommy.

Wish List

I've done some cute projects today, like a crocheted edge on a burp cloth, a tag blanket, etc. But my camera's batteries are dead. And I'm alone and feel like blogging. So I thought I'd share some things I'd love to have.

First, this:
Think of all the fun I could have!!

I would love one of these, it would make my life even MORE heavenly than it already is:

One of these would be nice:

But my absolute dream is to own my very own:

Sigh. I'm done being covetous for the day. What's on your wish-list?

Monday, February 1, 2010


Although my tiny child is too small for "preschool", I don't think she is too small to learn. And that includes learning things like letters. I'm not set on my children reading by the time they're 3, but I think young children have a knack for learning. And since my wee one likes to color (she colored our TV green around the screen, and our walls blue...) I thought I would try to focus on one alphabet letter and 1 number every week. Here are a few things I am doing to try and introduce.

Letter A
*Letter A coloring book, found here.
*Letter A treasure hunt (pretty much anywhere we go and any book we read we look for the letter A)
*A shaped cookies (actually, we're going to do brownies...yum!)
*Scripture verse Matt 7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.
*Practice writing the letter A
*Collage with pictures from a magazine that start with the letter A

Number 1:
*Play "How many do you have?" Basically a simple game where we ask "May I have one ____?" and respond "I have one ____, you may have it." Incorporates turn taking and is great for a two year old!
* Number 1 coloring sheet that I found here.
*Go on a #1 treasure hunt while we shop at the store.
*Make up a song together about number 1 (We'll probably just use a song we know and change the words.

I'm pretty excited. Any time we get bored or need something to do together, I just pull out one of these activities! How fun! I'll let you know how they go!