Friday, March 7, 2014

On Being a Mom

1 Day
1 week
1 month
Blessing Day

2 months
3 months

4 months

I have never properly introduced Maggie on the blog, mostly because we haven't updated it for over a year. I don't intend to do so now, I figure it's been four months, so to go back and retell our story will take awhile. You can look at pictures, and perhaps imagine the roller coaster our life has been on the last year. My purpose in posting today is to get back into the swing of blogging, and to share a moment of clarity I enjoyed last night after a very long and trying day.

Because she is four months old, Maggie had her 4 month appointment and shots on Wednesday. Initially, she did well with the shots, but I decided to take Thursday off as a precaution because I wasn't sure that this honeymoon period would last. I was smart to do so, because she was he crabbiest she has ever been. It was an endless cycle of fussy, sleeping, happy, fussy, sleeping, eating, fussy. When Steve got home at 4:30, I was exhausted and stir crazy all at the same time. I had been dying to get out of the house all day, but given the way Maggie was acting, that didn't happen. So when Steve got home we went out for a walk. We all enjoyed the 45 minutes, but as soon as we got home the cycle of fussiness started all over again. It progressively got worse, and she decided to take sleep out of the equation. We alternated who would take her, each hoping the other could calm her, but no dice.

This day made me doubt my ability as a mom. I felt so disconnected from my sweet baby, because no matter what I did, I was not helping her. I rarely have entire days with my daughter because I work part time. The fact that I couldn't help her, combined with the concern that she was getting too used to being without me, made me frustrated, angry and exhausted. Around 8:00, her crying got worse, and I took her from Steve. I bounced and rocked her as she cried in my arms. I looked out the window, and after a few minutes, I realized she and Steve had both fallen asleep. I took the chair by the window, and enjoyed the silence. As this happened I was completely overcome. I felt that connection I was convinced I had lost, strengthen. I was inspired at that moment that it didn't matter if I worked, or didn't, I am the only mother for Maggie. Soon after this, Steve woke up and said  "you are the best mother Maggie could have." The only explanation for this is that The Lord was keenly aware of my needs, and when all was still, I could finally recognize it.

I love being a mom.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Megan and I were driving earlier today and talking about today's holiday as well as the coming holidays next month. Some loved ones had asked if there was anything we needed as they do their Christmas shopping, so we were thinking about it. Everything we came up with, though, was a "want" instead of a "need". It was a great reminder of how blessed we really are. We have so much to be thankful for.

Last year we decided to make a playlist of Thanksgiving songs (which really means songs about gratitude) and it has been wonderful to listen to often for the last few weeks. It's probably a little late, but here are the songs:
-Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing, sung by Freddy Ashby (who is the son of my mission president)
-Grateful (featuring Brian Stokes Mitchell)/The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
-My God, My Portion, and My Love/The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
-Prayer of Thanksgiving/Peter Breinholt
-Thou Gracious God, Whose Mercy Lends/The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
-Hymn of Nature/Jon Schmidt
-Thankful/Josh Groban
-How Can I Keep from Singing?/Eva Cassidy
-Brother James' Air/The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
-What About?/Peter Breinholt
-Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep/The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
-On My Front Porch Looking In/Lonestar
-For the Beauty of the Earth/The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
-Some Folks' lives Roll Easy/Paul Simon
-Laughing With/Regina Spektor
-Prayer of the Children/Voicemale
-Game in the Aspens (Five Canyon Impressions)/Robert Cundick

It is assuredly the only playlist in the world that features the Motab, Regina Spektor, and my grandpa. We're grateful for good music.

We're grateful for our jobs, that give us a chance to learn, to associate with great people, and to serve others.
We're grateful for our apartment, and the chance to live with my grandparents and learn from them.
We're grateful for our puppy, who keeps us smiling.
We're grateful for wonderful parents and families, who continue to teach us.
We're grateful for dear friends, both new and old.
We're grateful for the little things in life. Gas station runs for diet sodas and hi-chews, date nights at Training Table, board games, projects around the house, Psych, house plants, musicals, football, Netflix, crafts, new tires, forever lazies, comedy, good books, pumpkin cheesecake bars, our callings, washers and dryers, gas logs, Wreck-it Ralph. etc etc.

Most of all, we're grateful for our testimonies of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. We're grateful for our temple marriage and eternal ties to those we love. We're grateful for our Savior who made it all possible and for our Father in Heaven, from whom flow all the blessings, big and small, that we enjoy each day. We must be the luckiest people alive.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Time Flies

Well, I officially stink at posting. I wish I didn't, but I do.

I guess the lack of posting is directly related to the lack of interesting things happening in our lives to post about. It seems to me like life just keeps plugging along, and we go along with it.

Soon after I wrote the last post, I found out I was going to have to leave my current school. After a lot of drama, and frustration, I applied for a job at Cottonwood Elementary and got it. I will be staying in 5th grade, and working with a teacher that I had as a 5th grader for science. It's weird to think that I will be teaching at the same elementary I went to. But I am excited all the same.

Steve graduated in May. He's currently look for a job to give him some more medical experience hours. Cross your fingers.

My brother got married the same day Steve graduated. It ended up being a crazy day, but I am SO happy for my brother and new sister in law Lindsay. (Yes, her name is Lindsay. Not to be confused with my sister Lindsay. And her parents are Bruce and Becky, not to be confused with MY parents Bruce and Becky. Small world huh?)

I successfully survived my first year of teaching. It was harder than I thought it would be to say goodbye to the school that gave me my start. I learned so much, and am excited to use what I've learned to make next year even better.

So far in the 4 days of summer I have experienced I have had this weird anxious feeling, like there's something I should be doing. I guess it is the feeling you get when you've worked hard all school year, and can laze about for the summer without a job. Hopefully that feeling will go away as we get more busy with our summer plans. On Monday I leave for Paris and London with my mom and sisters, and Steve goes to the U.S. Open in San Francisco with my Dad and brother. It will be the first time we've spent so long apart, but we're both excited for our separate adventures. Hopefully by the end of our adventures, we'll have something amusing to share. 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

It happened....

Today I yelled at my students.

Oh ya.

Some of you will say, "Isn't that normal for a teacher? Why is that a big deal?" The thing is, it's not normal for me. I have never full out yelled at my students before. I have yelled before, but usually it's a teasing, trying to sound threatening way. Today however I hit my limit. I yelled, in a can't handle it anymore, going to explode, cannot restrain myself way.

Granted, the frustration was warranted. My students couldn't stop making stupid comments, or interrupting me while I was talking. It kept happening ALL DAY! So by the end of the day (when the yelling happened) I was done. Usually this frustration doesn't result in my yelling...Not Today! After I was through, an eerie silence fell over my classroom. No one dared come near me the rest of the day.

Needless to say, I felt terrible. I even stamped my foot while yelling. Who does that? Definitely not me! But today, it happened. I yelled, and stamped and had a minor freak out at my students.

The worst part is, I yelled because I was frustrated at other things, and I took it out on my students. Too many other things were going wrong, and unfortunately the comments and interruptions were the last straw. The last 24 hours have been stressful to say the least so therefore, I yelled.

It doesn't feel good.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Having never been a parent, I cannot attest to the difficulty of this task. I can tell you however, that some parents just don't care enough about their children. Plain and Simple. I can attest to the fact that children need the support of their parents to succeed. I can also say that if all parents could and would just try the following, their children would be much better off.

1. Do check your child's back pack when they get home to see if they have everything they need.
2. Do not dodge a teacher/principal/social worker's phone call.
3. Do not teach them to disrespect their elders, or that saying please and thank you is optional.
4. Do hear them out when they try and tell you something is wrong.
5. Do not over-schedule your child, and by association yourself.
6. Do ask your child what they learned in school today.
7. Do not say you're too busy to listen to them read.
8. Do be consistent in enforcing the rules you set.
9. Do not pretend everything is always okay. (They know that it's not)
10. Do take their teacher seriously when they list concerns.
11. Do not attack said teacher for voicing their concerns. If they didn't care about your child, they wouldn't tell you.
12. Do tell your child that you love them.
13. Do not set unrealistic expectations
14. Do let your children know it's okay to fail.
15. Do not teach them to hide their feelings.
16. Do laugh with your children when they do something funny...and teach them to laugh at themselves.
17. Do not criticize, intimidate or bully as a form of discipline.
18. Do help your children show genuine emotion, rather than to blankly stare into oblivion.
19. Do not assume that they just know you love them.
20. Do teach your children to be a leader AND a follower.
21. Do not dissuade them from following their dreams, as obscure or crazy they may seem.

Some of the parents I have encountered may say this list is easier said than done, or that I don't know what I'm talking about because I'm not a parent. To them I respectfully say...just try it and yes, I do.

Monday, October 3, 2011

New Addition

Well, after months of bargaining, Megan finally consented to us getting a dog! She wasn't totally sold on the idea, but she knew how much I wanted one...and was maybe a bit tired of me asking.

I had found a listing for a 9-month old dog on We arranged to drive to Logan to see him last Friday night. His owner was a college student, who apparently thought that she would be able to find an apartment that allowed dogs when she moved to school, but wasn't able to.

Since we were teenagers, my brother and I have planned on having beagles. He would be naming his Bingley, and I would name mine Bentley. He's still working on getting his, but we decided to follow through. So the dog formerly known as "Koylei" was renamed--Bentley the Beagle.

As we drove home from Logan, he was super chill and cuddly! We could tell he was getting restless by the end of the drive. He would lay down in one position, move his head ten seconds later a couple of times, and then stand up and find another position. When we finally got home, he ran laps around his new home! We could tell he was happy to be here.

Since then, we've been adjusting to having him around. We built a pen for him in our storage room, and he's usually content to be wherever we are. He is super energetic, but crashes after running around for awhile. He loves to hang out under our furniture, though he has to do an army crawl to get there. He chews a lot, but we've found some good toys that distract him from our more precious objects.

We're glad to have him around! Here are some pictures. We took some good ones with our camera, but we can't find the these will have to do. They were taken with our phones.

He also likes to lay in funny positions, like this one we caught:

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Thou gracious God, whose mercy lends
the light of home, the smile of friends,
our gathered flock thine arms enfold
as in the peaceful days of old.

Wilt thou not hear us while we raise
in sweet accord of solemn praise
the voices that have mingled long
in joyous flow of mirth and song?

For all the blessings life has brought,
for all the sorrowing hours have taught,
for all we mourn, for all we keep,
the hands we clasp, the loved that sleep.

The noontide sunshine of the past,
these brief, bright moments fading fast,
the stars that gild our darkening years,
the twilight ray from holier spheres.

We thank thee, Father; let thy grace
our loving circle still embrace,
thy mercy shed its heavenly store,
thy peace be with us evermore.

-Oliver Wendell Holmes