Friday, November 28, 2008

Count Your Blessings

I started this post a couple days ago, and now its the last day of November, so I am going to finish it tonight!

I got a little behind on my gratitude list, partly because...

....Scott came home Saturday before Thanksgiving! And we are all so happy and thankful that he survived the training and his back with us again.

I am thankful I wasn't at Walmart this morning. I did go to Target when they opened at 6am, and while I stood in the super-long checkout lines, I talked to some ladies that had been at Walmart earlier- complete chaos, borderline anarchy. I don't think I'll ever be brave (crazy) enough to do Walmart on Black Friday.

The only reason I even made it to Target this morning is because Scott set up the baby crib yesterday, and Jacob slept in his room for the first time! He slept all the way till 5am!!! That may not sound so exciting to some, but for me it is wonderful. I slept from 10:30 till 5 without interuption, plus he went back to sleep until after 7am! So I even came home to a quiet house (Eden and Andrew were watching cartoons, but all was calm).

I'm grateful we could get together with some friends from Scott's flight for Thanksgiving dinner. I was a little sad not to be with family, but it was an enjoyable afternoon for everyone and there was plenty of yummy food, I love T-day leftovers!

Last year, we had SO many spiders coming in from the cold during the fall, lots of big hairy ones too (wolf spiders, I think?) Anyway, I think we're past that time of year now, so I'm grateful that we haven't had nearly so many, and none of the big brown ones like last year.

I'm so thankful for the peace that the knowledge of the gospel brings to my life, even in times such as these. We may not have world peace, but we can each have peace with us. It helps me to know our family is forever, so the time that Scott has to be away, while sometimes sad and/or difficult, is such a tiny fraction of the eternity that we are together.

I'm truly thankful for this challenge, I really think it helped me to be a happier person, especially while Scott was away for a few weeks. It reminded me of the promises proclaimed in the hymn, "Count Your Blessings" (Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, no. 241):

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings; name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings; ev’ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you his wealth untold.
Count your many blessings; money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven nor your home on high.

So amid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged; God is over all.
Count your many blessings; angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.
Count your blessings;Name them one by one.
Count your blessings;See what God hath done.
Count your blessings;Name them one by one.
Count your many blessings;See what God hath done.

Friday, November 21, 2008

More to be thankful for

Today I am thankful for:

the awesome parking spot I got at the gym this morning- right in front of the doors! I don't think we could've parked any closer!

Eden- she loves to read (even to Andrew, she should have be getting ready for school), and she loves to help feed Jake. What a great big sis!

Andrew- he has a natural gift of gratitude. He says thank you for even little things spontaneously (even months after the fact, he'll remember gifts and be genuinely thankful for it all over again). Plus, he has some mad Ninja Turtle/Kung Fu Panda skills!

Jake- what's not to love? He may not be sleeping through the night yet, but he naps like a pro! He's been eating solids for a few weeks now, but I just never got a picture until today.

my sister, Robin- she always remember to call me when Scott is gone and doesn't mind when I do almost all the talking. Thank you! Love ya!

Some more pics of what we've been up to lately, since I haven't been posting as many photos this month:

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Name them one by one...

I'm thankful for the chance we had to live in Hawaii. We've been gone for a year and a half now, and we really are enjoying South Dakota, but here's what brought this to my mind: On Friday, my watch broke. I know it doesn't look like much, and it only cost $5 at the BX, but it was my special watch that I used when I went surfing. Initially I thought it had just come unlatched while Jake was playing with it. But, later when I found it was broken, I sat on the couch looking at it, remembering those fun surfing days and all the great friends we made there. After feeling a little pitiful for myself(I didn't realize that the watch meant anything to me until that moment), I remembered that we were just so lucky to have that opportunity. It sounds kind of pathetic, but I think I might put this watch in my scrapbook...

I'm thankful for good books- this was the book for this month. I really liked it- enough that I went ahead and ordered my own copy after reading the one I had borrowed from Amanda. And the company was great too!

I'm thankful for brownies from the box. I have yet to find a recipe that can compare, they are just so good! These are my favorite.

I'm thankful that the kids and I have survived our last Sunday at church without Scott (at least for a while). Yay!

I'm thankful for good music. I've been listening to this CD lately.

I'm thankful for people who know how to do coding stuff for blogs. I wouldn't have been able to play around with making my blog "cuter" (its a work in progress) without their talent and willingness to share.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday again!

It's hard to believe a week has gone by since the huge blizzard and as I look around and still see piles of snow (it is finally melting), I remember that we actually had really nice weather for Halloween. It was nice for the kids not to be bundled-up to the point that you can't tell what they're supposed to be. I'm also thankful to kind friends who took my kids out trick-or-treating so I could stay inside with Jake. Thanks Rocknak's and McCarty's!

I'm thankful for Flu Mist. Today I took the kid to get flu shots today. I explained that I had to do it too, and that it would help us stay healthy and help Jacob stay health too (since he's too young to get the flu vaccine), we were still dreading it anyway. But, when we got there, I found out that we could all get the mist instead. We celebrated our good fortune with TCBY afterward.

I'm also thankful for friends I've made in our moving around. I've been so blessed to know some truly awesome ladies who are such great examples of kindness, charity, and enduring well the hard times. I know our Father in heaven sends His tender mercies through the actions of friends. Tuesday morning was just hard for no particular reason, but reading a quick note (via internet) from a friend lifted my spirit and helped turn the day around.

Monday, November 10, 2008

More thankful thinking

I can't/don't update our blog everyday, but here are some more things I'm thankful for:

1. The durability of the human baby- today (another day of no school) I decided to use one of the coupons the kids got from their swim lessons for free admission to open swim at the pool. All went well until I was trying to get the four of us rinsed off and into dry clothes before heading out into thte cold. Andrew's towel ended up partly under Jacob who was resting on the bench. I had even placed things on either side of him to stop him from rolling. But, Andrew would not wait for me to help him (my hands were full at the moment), and he slid Jake right off the bench onto the hard tile floor. Luckily he slid bum/feet first, so he didn't land on the top of his head, and it was only 15 in. or so and Jacob is fine. (I know of another baby who survived a similar incident from an even higher point once upon a time.)

2. Blogs, e-mail, cell phones, and other communications technology. It's so much easier to stay in touch when Scott travels, and even when he's really out of contact, I'm still able to make some kind of contact with other adults every day. And its great to keep up with friends and family as we move around.

3. Snow plows and the people who drive them. If it weren't for them, we'd still be stuck at home and going crazy. But, even though there's still plenty of snow piled up all over, we are able to get around town fine.

4. The great system of checks and balances that our government has. We can vote for who and what we believe in, but no one has absolute power and control. I may not always agree with the outcome of an election, but I really believe in the design of our founding fathers, and I believe that it works.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I thought I would do "Thankful Thursdays" this month, and then saw this challenge on Amanda's blog (see sidebar), so I'll be keeping a list in my sidebar. Here's the list I had started, I'm trying to be specific and notice things everyday:

1. A warm house with working electricity and heat. Especially when this is what is outside (that's our back door and the house across the street, looks a lot like pictures I took just six months ago!):

2. Nice friends who come shovel front and back and driveway when Scott is gone- thanks Shaun and Cam!

That leads me to...

3. I'm thankful for two 'built-in' support systems I have available to me all the time no matter where we go: the Air Force (ie. Scott's squadron members), and the Church (hometeachers, visiting teachers, etc.).

4. An enclosed garage to park the van in, so I don't have to scrape every time I want to leave the house during the winter!

5. A nice little gym that has a nursery that will take kids age newborn and up. I was a little nervous at first (bud decided I didn't want to shell out the big bucks for a good treadmill), but the lady who watches Andrew and Jake for me is so sweet and she is always so excited to see them, especially the babies. This is wonderful for me because it is so much easier to be a happy person (read Mom) when I am able to exercise.

6. I'm thankful for a great friend who sets up a space for me in the Body Pump class at the gym. It's so nice not to stress about getting the three of us there early every week, not to mention the extra motivation of knowing someone expects to see you there. Thanks Amanda!

7. I'm thankful school is closed today (and tomorrow)- I really don't like driving in the snow until the roads have been cleared well.

Which reminds me...

8. I'm thankful for the good day we had all cooped-up indoors together. This really is saying a lot for one parent vs. 3 young kids! We made a Thankful Turkey (his name is Theo and we're going to keep adding feathers this month) and played games (and watched TV). The kids even said what a fun day it was and how great a mom I am. It's so nice to actually hear them say things like that, even if I'm a "mean mom" again 2 minutes later when I won't let them (actually just Andrew had a fit) have a cookie before dinner. I hope we can have another good day tomorrow!

(That's "baby" Bumblebee Transformer, which Andrew had put down for a nap, he's such a boy, but he can be so sweet! Everything into the mouth for Jake, I keep trying to get one with his fingers in his mouth, but haven't been able to catch him yet.

9. I'm thankful for Scott. He called just to tell me he would be calling later than normal because he has to go back to class this evening- how thoughtful is that!