posted by on Family Home Evening

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Tonight it was my turn to teach family home evening and I didn’t do a very good job at it.  We’re all frustrated with each other this week (due to lack of family scripture reading) so nobody’s really feeling the love these days.  As I explained principles of the gospel I received glares in return.  I would ask questions and a lot of answers were given half-heartedly, almost resentfully, and I found myself feeling more and more frustrated as the lesson went on.  Finally in my bossy and most unpleasant “mother” tone I firmly said, “Can you all answer a little more cheerfully, please?”  Yeah, not one of my finest moments in Family Home Evening history….and I daresay that it won’t be my last, which brings me to my point.  I will be able to do this again in eight weeks (teach a lesson, that is) and not only will I be able to do this again, I can start preparing now to do it again, BETTER.  Repentance is lovely in that it’s an opportunity to evaluate my efforts, realize there is room for change and improvement, counsel with Heavenly Father about those changes, and then make them happen.  I am hopeful as I look eight weeks into my future and am terribly grateful, tonight, for do-overs in every form!!

posted by on Ramblings

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Have you ever noticed that the information people share on Facebook is a lot like watching a soap opera?  It doesn’t matter how long it’s been since you’ve checked in…the story line is always the same.   I’m not sure why this makes me chuckle, but it does.

posted by on My Life

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I am a mother of six children.  Have I ever mentioned that?  Anywho, I am a mother of six children and for some reason that makes me an expert in the eyes of those mothers who are less experienced.  Little do they know I am just as clueless as the next mom.  🙂  Today I thought I would write about the things I am asked about on a regular basis and what I am really thinking to myself while answering to the latest victim.

Q: How do you keep your home so clean?

A: My answer is usually something like, “Well, I believe that many hands make light work so everybody has a job and helps get the work done.”

WIRT: (What I’m Really Thinking) Are you kidding me?!  Have you seen the boogers on the wall?  Can you smell the stink in my kids’ rooms?  My home?  Clean?!  Honey, it’s a zoo around here….literally!

Q: How do you always stay so calm with your children all of the time?

A: LOL!  Honey, if I got upset at every little thing my kids did I would be the most depressed and emotionally unstable woman on the block!  I have to keep perspective somehow and I do that by going into observation mode, otherwise known as coping.  If I’m observing my children and trying to figure out what’s making them tick, I’m learning something about them, and to be honest, I need to learn something about them at that point because I have NO CLUE what I’m doing.  Oh, and if I’m “calm” enough to think about it, I throw a prayer in there, too.

WIRT:  I flashback on the many years I didn’t deal well as a mother in a calm manner and shudder at the millions of dollars I’m going to have to fork out to my kids’ therapists when they are older because I over reacted too many times.  On the other hand, I think about how far I’ve come since sitting in the office of the counselor I went to as a young mother because I had issues that I needed to work through and pray my own children will one day understand.

Q:  How do you have time to do it all?

A:  Nobody has time to do it all.  You just have to decide what your priorities are.  Sometimes, when you’re so overwhelmed and you don’t know where to start, you ask God to direct you to the nearest exit only to find yourself standing in front of a little row boat.  Almost instantaneously you feel a voice from within telling you, “Just start rowing and I’ll take care of the rest.”

WIRT:  My first thought is a prayer to God thanking him for the ability to get what little I do accomplish done because I’m envisioning the mountains of laundry in every room, the sheets on the beds in my children’s rooms that haven’t been washed for two months, the frustration my husband tries to hide from me when he goes to get ready for church and his only white dress shirt is still at the bottom of the clothes hamper, and my child’s most recent report card reflecting what little time I’ve spent with him lately.  I am also haunted by the memory of the disappointment in my best friend’s voice when she and I realized simultaneously that I forgot her birthday and  the realization that  I have forgotten, yet again, to come up with what’s for dinner tonight and thinking I really need to get that monthly menu plan figured out one of these days. I’m really thinking that my poor family is suffering because I don’t have time to do it all!  And then I wonder, what in the world do others see that I don’t!?

These are just a few examples of questions I’m asked and I hope I was able to illustrate that we never really know what is going on inside others.  I also want to acknowledge that there are, in fact, some extremely talented women out there who are some of the most amazing household and family managers you’ll ever meet.  Having said that, I’m proud to say I’m not ashamed to admit that I am NOT one of them.

I really don’t have a clean home, I’m really not as calm as I appear to be, and I’m really not getting anything done.  Honestly, I gave up the hopes to ever become that woman a long time ago when I realized that my expectations were beginning to damage the relationships important to me.  As you can see that although I have accepted that I have unrealistic expectations of myself, I’m still learning how to let go of  those expectations and what a process that has been!  Some expectations are a relief to let go of because there was nothing natural about them and others, I have found, need to be grieved over because either something about them was important to me, they came naturally to me, and/or the idea of learning a “new language” scared me to death.  🙂  However, expectation or not, I’m still finding joy in the experience.

The goal today was to be real with myself.  Sometimes that can be scary, but instead of finding something to be afraid of I ended up learning (again) that life is a journey.  Today I read that the destination is the journey. So true!

Loving my life.  Loving my journey.  Loving the destination.  Loving myself. Expectations and all.

posted by on My Life, Ramblings

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This week I have learned the importance of not judging others. I watched a very touching video about a young man who had been left at an orphanage and, because of his experiences there, he has been homeless since he was five. At one point in his life he had the opportunity to watch someone perform vocally (I’m guessing opera because that is what he sings) and he was so touched by the music that he had decided that he wanted to sing ever since and worked really hard towards this goal.

He tried out on a national talent show and wasn’t taken seriously because of his circumstances and his appearance and when he started to sing he was amazing. I cried because I had realized how long he had gone w/o being able to share his talent with anyone and because of how incredibly talented this man was. I wondered how many people I have overlooked because of their situations, never giving a second thought to what could be. It was a very humbling experience for me.

On the other hand, I asked to go to lunch with a woman this week who clearly had some misconceptions of me and I wanted the opportunity to clear them up. I was so grateful for the experience I had in communicating my honorable intentions to her and that she was willing and able to believe me. It was hard to be seen as someone I am definitely not and, again, I was left to wonder how many times I may have done this to someone else and feeling a renewed desire to give every one I come into contact with the benefit of the doubt and to build them up in whatever way I can.

I am truly amazed that despite all of our imperfections we are able to still love one another and reach out to each other and communicate the desires of our hearts. Just another testament to me that Heavenly Father really does want us to return back to him and all together.  I also learned that we receive help from him even when we aren’t aware of it. I know the conversation couldn’t have gone very well had it not been for the added help from Him.

posted by on Ramblings

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Women.  I’m ever amazed at the feelings of validation I feel without even knowing I needed to feel them.  I can observe a conversation taking place between two women and feel validated just by listening.  Today my friends, without even knowing it,  helped me reconnect with the woman in me and it was nice to know she’s closer than I thought.  🙂 Yes, I am grateful for the women in my life and I am grateful to be a woman!