Homeschool Conference!!!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Monday, January 30, 2012

I AM Greater than this! :0)



Found this on a wonderful site that brings a smile to my face each day...
(Just Feelin' Good)


I had to smile at this one...
How appropriate for this time in my life!


I am not certain what inside of me is greater than 
all these yucky obstacles...
but I choose to believe it is in there and that I will come out on top.  
(I really hope it happens super quick 
and doesn't just drag on 
and on 
and on 
and on 
and on 
and on)

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mom, You Just Don't Get It...

Really???

Last time I checked, I had the same feelings, the same fears, the same emotions, the same worries, the same anxiety, the same wonder...

But, apparently, BECAUSE I am the MOM, I don't get "IT"...

Not sure how to reach these kids who think I don't feel this pain.

I would love to say that going to our first day of Church in our new home was fabulous...the best way to describe it would be to say that it was less than successful...

We found the building without problem, arrived in plenty of time, found a comfy place to fit our big family, had several kind people approach us...all seemed to be going okay...until about 5 minutes into the sacrament meeting, I have two kids begging to go home.  Then one of them starts crying uncontrollably and has to leave while another flips out because this is not their ward, they don't want to be here and I cannot make them stay or go to class.  WOW!!!!  I did NOT see this coming today.  I knew it would be hard, I knew it would be scary for them, BUT I thought it would be my little ones who had fears that would  be evident for all to see, not my older kids.

THEN, we finally make it through the day and the emotions just keep flying...
I had finally had it when for the umpteenth time I heard those words AGAIN ~
"Mom, You Just Don't Get It!!!"

REALLY?
I don't get that going to church with people I don't know is hard and scary?  I don't get that leaving everything I know back at home hurts like crazy?  I don't get that my dream is vanishing before my eyes and there isn't one single dang thing I can do to make it reappear?  I don't get that all my friends are meeting for church in my building at my old house and I am not there anymore?  I don't get that all of this hurts and it totally stinks?  Okay, I guess I'm just the mom and so I don't get it.  Did I miss the memo that said when you become the mom you no longer have these feelings and you don't get it anymore?

Cause I am feeling it all...
I didn't want to go to a new church, I wanted to drive back to Middleton, too.  I wanted to give hugs to all the people I love to see every Sunday, I didn't want to find a smile to share with strangers, I didn't want to see where I would fit in.  I didn't want to try to console my little people while they hurt, BUT I am the Mom and I have to do things EVEN when I REALLY, REALLY don't want to do them.

I have decided that it is really tough to move big kids, they don't adjust as easily as little ones do.  My little girls are happy to be here, they are okay...they are looking forward to having a lemonade stand cause that's what you do when you live in a neighborhood.  Why can't we all be excited that we get a lemonade stand?  Why can't we all be turning this giant pile of sour lemons into sweet delicious lemonade?  Why can't we all be as sweet and innocent and accepting as my little ones are?

I hope and pray that this doesn't change, that these little kids continue to be happy, cause if ONE more person is unhappy in this move, I'm not so sure that I can keep trying to be happy.  I wake up in the morning determined that it will be a happy day, that all will go well, that my kids will smile and find joy in their surroundings, that they will not be so angry.  I know it is normal to need to be angry, I just wish their anger didn't have to come out at me.
I AM ANGRY, TOO!!!
I don't want this!
I don't want this big, beautiful home.
I want my little farm home that I dreamed of growing old in...I want to go back home.  BUT it isn't my home anymore.  Soon it will belong to someone else.  I wonder if they'll ever know how much this home meant to our family?  I wonder if they'll treasure it the way I did.  I wonder if they'll dream the same dream of growing old with their husband there.  I wonder if they'll ring a bell to call all their children in for dinner.  I wonder if they will watch their children ride horses and bikes, I wonder if they'll play in the creek or lay under the trees.  I wonder if they'll look out my bedroom window and gaze at the moon for hours, just as I did.  I wonder if they'll be missing something they had to leave or if they will LOVE my home the way I did.

I wish at this very moment that my kids could understand that Moms really do get it...they really do feel it...they really do hurt and want things to just be normal again.  They really do wish to run back home and go back to living their life that has been yanked out from under them.

BUT for now, I will just do my best to comfort them, to love them, to help them adjust.
And I will pour my heart out to you, my dear blog...
They should be spared the heartache that I feel.  They have no need to know that my very soul is hanging on a thread, grasping for peace and solace.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Never More Than We Can Handle???

So, there is a scripture that has given me such a sense of peace over the past few years, don't have the reference with me as I am sitting in a Moxie Java sipping Hot Cocoa without my scriptures in hand.

Nevertheless, it speaks to the thought that we will never be given more than we can handle...

I've been thinking about this quite a bit.

I've come to the conclusion that this may not be so,
bear with me.
Don't close me out just yet.
YES, I totally believe the scriptures, I do not doubt them...
but here is where I begin to question this one just a bit.

Haven't you ever thought to yourself,
"Self, this is way more than I can take?  
I am about to implode, my heart cannot take one more hard thing."  
Boy have I thought this and said it right out loud for all the world to hear...including that Big Guy up there!

I haven't always said it in a most reverent way...
during hard times, I have found myself in the middle of a full-blown temper tantrum in my car, all by myself yelling and screaming, tears freely flowing, just letting it all out...
I wouldn't want to frighten my kiddos or my hubby,
so these little moments are shared with only my Heavenly Father.
I'm sure He would like to tell me to pick myself up, pull it together and put my big girl panties on, but instead, He is patient with me, He waits for me to figure it out and when I finally cave and go to Him -- begging for what I most need, He stands ready to give me what I need, maybe not what I want.
 
If we were never given more than we could handle...we might never have the need to go to our Father in Heaven in prayer.  We'd be able to just handle it all...no need to ask for His help, his comfort, his guidance, his love.

BUT, during the times that we really feel we just cannot take one more thing,
in our moments of desperation,
our moments of utter despair,
when we feel all is about to be lost including our minds and our hearts
(for they are surely about to break in two);
we finally reach a breaking point, a point that we are open, we are willing to let HIM in, let Him work His magic, let Him make it all okay again.

If we never reached this point of more than we can take, we would never see the beauty in His miracle of healing our hearts and our minds.

Maybe you all have a whole lot more faith than I do, I believe I have faith; I just wait, thinking I can handle it all...no need to bother anyone else with my problems, with my heartbreaking moments, I'd really like to keep it all in and not share it...I'd like to appear to be strong and capable and without need.
But the truth is, I am not strong, sometimes I am frightened and alone and desperate for help.  And it is only these times that I put it out there, that I allow Him to fix it, because it cannot be fixed in any other way.

I am learning, slowly, that He does have a plan for me.  He has a plan for my family.  He has not forgotten us.  He is always there.
I picture Him just patiently waiting in a big comfy rocking chair, 
(just as I do with my little ones)
I am so happy and willing to pick them up, hold and comfort and rock them till all their fears are gone, until they feel happy and whole and ready to stand on their own two feet once again.
I see Him being much the same...
He's happy to hold and comfort my heart, He will be there to dry my tears and help me stand back up, he'll even give me that little push to jump start me when I am too fearful to take the next step.

I look back on this very hard week our family has encountered and see His loving hand right in the midst of it all.  I have found peace that we are where we are supposed to be...Life is going to be GOOD and HAPPY and FULL and RIGHT...
Different isn't wrong, it's just different.
Change is a good thing, helps us to grow and develop and see new things within ourselves.

What I really believe is:
that WITH HIM, we will never be given more than we can handle...
We'll just be given ENOUGH to make us go to HIM, 
submit to Him, 
give our hearts and our will to Him 
without question.

Friday, January 27, 2012

I take it back!!!!

If you'll remember back a post or two or ten???  I mentioned something about doing one brave thing a day...

Well...that may have been one of my BIGGEST mistakes ever...It might not sound that major to suggest doing one little brave thing a day...I thought it sounded pretty okay, quite inspired, fairly do-able, maybe even a tad bit exciting.

Looking back on what I thought...I guess I'd have to say how naive I really was or really am.
I've come to find out that being Brave is NOT exciting, it's not so do-able and honestly most of the time it really isn't very okay.

I have had more than my fair share of opportunities since my posting to try out being Brave.
I'm not so good at it!
I think I have to say that I'm not a big fan of being brave.  It's really hard.  It's really scary.  It's really more than what I wish to be doing day in and day out.

I quite think I prefer being not so brave...
What was I thinking???

Why didn't I come up with some amazing New Years resolution that went something like:

Try smiling at least once a day...
or say one kind thing to another person every day and mean it...
or keep my bedroom clean
or do at least 3 loads or wash a day
or bake bread for my family and never buy another loaf from the store again
or climb to the top of Mount Everest
or jump out of an airplane one time...

BUT NO...I decided to put it out there that each and every day I would do some brave thing...

OH MY GOSH...I take it back, I don't want to be brave...at least not every day...some days I want to be afraid and I want it to be okay to be afraid, some days I want to shrink from what faces me and I want that to be okay, too...  I want all these big, hard, scary things to take a little break, maybe go on an extended vacation and give me a moment to take a break, take a breath, feel like my heart has gone on a vacation...

I'm pretty certain that life isn't going to just give me this break, hard things will always face me...that's part of life, right?  At least that's what I've been told  (I wish I would have covered my ears and started singing lalalalalalalala) but I didn't, I heard it, I know and now I just have to take one day at a time.

I can be brave, but I also know I can choose to not be so brave on the days that it's just not there and it is okay.  I will be okay.  Our kids will be okay.  Life is changing, but it will be okay.

Home is where our family is...
Our family can make it through anything...
We are Strong...
We will survive...
We will come out on top...
We will shine...
We can do brave things!

I just REALLY, REALLY, really hope we don't have to do brave things every day, maybe just every now and then.  I think we need a time to be bored and sit around twiddlin' our thumbs and counting the fibers in the area rugs...I'm ready for that...and who knows after a day or two of that I may be ready to take on a brave thing a day again.  ???

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Don't we all need an invitation?

I didn't expect to feel well enough to go to Church today, but I was doing okay...

So happy I went!  Heard my Dear Hubby bear his testimony and watched as a herd of men all went forward to share their testimonies...Chad challenged them after a dream he had of filling the Sacrament hour with all the Men in the ward.  My kids commented that it felt like an EFY or an early morning "morningside" as they watched all the men stand and head up...things like this should happen more often.  What an amazing example to all of their families!

Many thoughts came to me today while I sat in church.  It was truly a lovely day for me.  I felt rather crummy and had to keep getting up and walking out to take a puff or two off that darn inhaler...but it was still a rewarding day.

Let's see what would I most like to share?
I think I'll go with some powerful feelings I experienced during Young Womens...
I didn't teach, I was able to sit with all the girls and be taught...it was nice!

The lesson started with this painting being displayed...our "job" was to focus on it and think of nothing else for 60 seconds.  We were to try to keep all other thoughts away, not let anything stand in the way or disrupt our thoughts and feelings.  Not sure how everyone else felt, but I think I could have gone on for another few minutes, my mind was overflowing.
Here was the painting...
It is titled Let Him In,
 by Greg Olson.
Let Him In by Greg Olsen

Well, I must say I had absolutely no problem at all with my mind wandering.
My mind was flooded with thoughts...60 seconds goes by in a blink when you are focused on something as BIG as this.

My first thoughts were,
"Oh I love that painting."
Then moved on non-stop to
"what is this saying to ME?
Am I guilty of making him stand outside?
I don't invite Him in often enough.
I desperately try to handle everything on my own...but what is that doing to Him?
It is leaving Him standing in the dark, ever patiently waiting for me to figure out that it would be so much easier if I'd just lay my burdens at His feet.
Why is it so hard to ask for help,
to open up that door,
to let Him in?
Will I ever learn that I can't do it alone?
Why must I be so stubborn and stupid?
Do I have a lack of faith?
A lack of trust?
He did give His life for me.
I know that.
I believe that.
I am amazed by that.
I am saddened by that when I look deeply at myself.
I can only think that if I were the one on the outside, knocking, waiting, wishing, hoping for the person on the other side to "get it"...
how long would I wait?
Would I finally just give up and walk away?
Would I feel that it was simply a waste of my time?
I probably would...I think I would wait for a great, great deal of time, but at some point I might feel it was pointless.  As I thought these thoughts, my heart broke just a little...I have to be causing grief to Him.  He has to be wondering what on earth is wrong with me.
Why am I of such little faith?  
Why do I not turn to Him...
He wishes to help me carry this heavy load.
My final thoughts were of gratitude.
I wanted to just reach out and give Him a big hug and thank Him for not giving up on me, for always being there, for not walking away, for patiently waiting by the door.
I guess that is why He is the Savior and I am Stacey.
He is perfect and He is happy to show me how I can one day become just like Him.
He will pick me back up when I have fallen.
He will wipe away my tears when I feel alone and scared.
When I feel I have no where to turn, I simply have to fall to my knees, look up and He will be there.  
He may make me wait,
may make me work really hard for answers...This has always been confusing for me...
There have been times when I have asked for help, I have pleaded for answers, yet I receive nothing.  I'm not going to say that I get that; I really don't, remember I am Stacey...I don't have an immense amount of faith (well maybe I do, I hope I do, but maybe it's just not sufficient)  The best guess I have is that He doesn't always answer me because He knows if I keep digging within I will know what the right choices in this life are.
But, He wants me to Ask,
He wants me to Let Him In, He wishes to help me.
And when I really don't know, He will happily step in and fill in the blanks.
How lovely is that?"

I walked away from such a simple little exercise a better person with a firm resolve to have more faith and to exercise it and to always open the door and LET HIM IN...
Even our Savior wishes to receive an Invitation.  
"Please, Come In"

Nothing held back...

I have some regret about the negativity of my previous post..
not so much that I will take it down, I still feel it was worth posting...but now I must change the mood.  What is interesting is that today was a pretty lovely day, all in all.
I was just lying here tonight pondering what it is REALLY like to be a mom to a whole crew of crazy kiddos and my thoughts just poured out and I felt as if I were in a confession type session.
It needed to be said...I needed to work through those thoughts and feelings...I needed to clear my mind and my heart.
I believe it can be so healing to just pour it all out on a page and then dig through...emotions are raw at times and that is what makes them REAL...

Tears freely flowing, heart rapidly pounding...nothing held back.

Let's lighten it up and sweeten it up just a bit, shall we???

What is wonderful about bEing the Mom?

Well, this post could go on endlessly for me, because there is truly nothing I treasure more than being the momma to all of our children.  I feel privileged to have them each to love and to cherish.  My life is full because of who they each are.  I am who I am because I am their Momma!

My days are filled with moments of laughter...
moments of wonder...
moments of tearing one child off of another...
moments of exhaustion...
moments of gratitude...
moments of learning and growing by their sides...
moments that make my heart skip a beat...
moments that leave me gasping for air...
moments that I will forever and ever treasure.

Life is Intense and at times Relentless...
Days are hard and long, but so very, very worth it!

bEinG tHe mOm totally ROCKS!  
Can't think of anything in the world I'd rather be doing....

Being Real...

Confessions of "me"...

How I long to be the super positive, always see the bright side of things, cup half full, finding joy in all things kinda person.  I think most of the time I manage pretty well.

BUT
suppressed deep inside is this little part of me that just wants and needs to jump up and down, yelling out --
"HOLY CHICKENS!!!  
Oh my heck!  
Dang, this is hard!"
and when I'm finished with that little ranting and raving...I'd just keep going on --
"Are You sure this is what I signed on for???  I'm thinking you have me confused with someone else who can handle all this jazz, someone who walks about in a calm sort of fashion, never flipping out, never screaming and yelling, never wishing she could just go hide in her room with a big box of dark chocolates that she really doesn't want to share...I just want them ALL to myself...I don't want to be nice sometimes!  I don't want to try to have it all together, I don't want to pretend I have all the answers, I don't want to try to keep up...cause even if I get it all caught up today -- it'll just be piled back up again tomorrow."

I wake up each day and try with all of my might to put on my happy face, pull out my positive attitude,
find my Mom Armor for the day...ya know the stuff that helps all the crappy things kids say and do just slide right off your back as if it never hit you in the first place.
I know they are just kids and they don't really mean to be such little turd muffins...but some days they just are and I guess that's okay.
Or is it?
Is it okay?
Is it okay that at a certain point, the nice mommy in me takes a walk down the street while the not-so-nice mommy has her little flip out moment --which is sure to be followed by torturing myself with thoughts that  I have now damaged my perfectly wonderful children by making them stand in the corner, nose touching the wall with mouths closed and hands to their sides (wait a minute...if they were being perfectly wonderful...this moment would have never taken place!)
This is when you look up, because,
well that's simply all you have going for you at the moment...
and you question Him...
"Are You really, really sure You sent me with all that I would need to handle this job, to handle this life?  Cause I'm tellin' ya what...THIS IS NOT EASY!  In fact, some days just aren't any fun at all."

And if I have a day that the kids are really great...well someone else might just jump in and mess it up for me.  Some people just aren't very thoughtful and then I turn into this ugly beast because I can't get over my hurt feelings.  Wow!  This confession stuff is tough...

You must know, it kills me to admit to these feelings and thoughts!
I am very, very, very BIG on being the cheerleader for other moms... I counsel them to find the positive things about motherhood and to cherish those moments.  I try to help them overcome feelings of despair and hurt...I do my best to help them heal.
I think we all need that to keep us keepin' on.
I believe (at least most of the time) that we have control of our feelings and emotions.  I believe we can Choose Joy, we can decide if we want to tackle this life joyfully or if we just survive the days without a smile ever crossing over our face.

In saying all of this...there are days that choosing to be joyful is a real chore!  Cherishing moments seems laughable, because they all feel a little too yucky.
Days that I really just want to complain for a little while.
Why?
Why??
Why???

Why do I have insecurities?  Why do I have doubt?  Why didn't you send me a bunch of easy kids?  (Are there easy kids?  Not sure about that one...) Why can't work just pour in...we're willing to work hard, if only there were work to do!  Why do we have to go through struggles and changes?  Why the disappointments?  Why do dreams shatter before your eyes?  Why can't I just handle it all?  Why does the laundry never end?  Why can't I eat what I want and look like a million bucks at the same time?  Why does there have to be hardship in the world?  Why do we need to experience loss?  Why can't I just focus on my blessings and forget all the dumb stuff I worry about?

Okay...
here's what I really think--
I'm forever going to have days that expose the very things I cannot stand about myself...
I'm not perfect and if I could just get over trying to be, life might prove to be a tad less stressful.
It's okay that some days I don't really LOVE what I'm doing; 
I still LOVE who I am doing them for...  
I love and adore my very determined, strong-willed, intense, dramatic, perfectly delightful children! 
I'm still willing to do it all, I wouldn't trade my life or what I do for something glamorous
(although it is a tempting thought on those ugly days!)...
it's okay to just make it through...to tough it out.
I'd love to say that when you have one hard day, the next is surely going to be brighter; probably not gonna be the case if you are the mom.
YES, there are amazing moments EVERY day.  They are just mixed in with a whole bunch of super hard, super trying, super exhausting, super overwhelming moments.

My challenge is to find those brief lovely moments in each day and  allow them to shine brightly in my mind; never forgetting their magnificence as they become clouded over by the stormy mishaps of life.

This whole confessing thing is a big one...whew, glad I am done with that!
Thanks for listening, or reading as is the case, while I gave myself permission to have little fits and realize that, "yep, it's hard!" -- and it's probably not gonna change anytime soon, so stock up on the chocolate, invest in a lock on the bathroom door along with a pair of really good earplugs to cover up the wailing and moaning of the 50 children pounding and begging for your undivided attention as you pretend you cannot hear a thing from behind that lovely door!

Oh and one last thing, my little confession does not mean I have totally lost it.  I can still do this life.  I can still handle all these kiddos.  I can still run our business.  I can still homeschool these wild animals.  I can still tackle the mountains of laundry.  I can still dig my way through.  And I can still do it all with a smile.  And most importantly I STILL WISH TO DO IT ALL, DAY IN AND DAY OUT.

Just being real...
   

Friday, January 6, 2012

Blogs, Inhalers, & A Few Amazing Writers...

I've come down with a horrible, nasty cold...finally went to the Doc today.
I DO NOT go to "that place" unless I absolutely have to.
Woke up thinking I have to go...just a tad worried that pneumonia was trying to enter into my world again and I really do not want a repeat of last year's hospital stay.  As great as they treated me...I much prefer my very own home.

So, I took myself in...
whew...
Pneumonia was a negative!
Yippee!
Bronchitis and a bit of a tongue lashing were what I walked away with.
Well those coupled with Azithromycin and a new Inhaler.

Why the tongue lashing?
Well that may be strong language...
it was actually the Doc's way of politely saying
TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF...
TAKE YOUR MEDS...
USE YOUR INHALER!

Asthma is a yucky thing to have...causes all sorts of extra problems.
If you get a little sniffle, it turns into something HUGE.
Doc assures me that if I will keep up on my inhaler, life will be easier...
so inhaler in hand I will be!

The one positive side of being sick is that I have had hours when I cannot sleep (but don't feel well enough to do much of anything else) to work on
creating ideas for my new blog. 
YES...
I will doing something new and great!
A New Blog...bigger and better and more beautiful and all that good stuff!
How exciting is that???
If you saw my last post...My plan is to do one brave thing a day!
I just did it...I announced that I am doing this...
OH MY GOSH!!!
NOW I can't be a scaredy-cat and change my mind cause I just told ya!
SO there...How is that for being Brave???

I will be combining everything from my current blog (yep, the one you are reading right now) and everything from my website.  My wheels are turning as I plan what I wish to share each day on this New BLOG!
I have been checking out blog after blog after blog...
what do I love,
what do I not love so much?
What speaks to me...
what makes me want to just hang out on a blog and never leave
 and what makes me want to click right back out.

I cannot wait to show YOU the fun things I am coming up with!  So many thoughts, so many ideas!

I will be looking for contributing writers,
SO if you are interested. let me know...the time is quickly approaching!
SOOOOOO excited!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

What should I change now???

We are all subjected to the thoughts of resolutions when a new year rolls around...
I could list pages worth of things I should or need to do...
Yet, the thought of that seems somewhat unproductive...
quite unappealing...
just another to-do list...
nothing special...
nothing challenging...
nothing life altering

BUT THEN...

I came across this on facebook ~










(by Lisa Stearns)

Hmmm..
This one is different...
The sky is the limit...
nothing to check off on "my list".
Challenging? Yes!
Something to truly set my mind to...
something to keep me on my toes,
something to inspire me to continue striving to do a little more and to be a little more.

SO...
That is it for me ~ 
Just one Brave thing a day!
That can't be so hard...
2012 is going to be one amazing year!!!

Don't ya just love it???