because i love you, i will …

tough love with my kiddos is hard for me. mostly i want to just have fun together.
but as a mother, i know that if i truly love my kids, i will teach them eternal truths.
these are often simple yet powerful lessons for them to learn (and me also!)

on extra challenging days or in extra trying moments, i have to remind myself that I must be unbending in teaching truths.
i have to tell myself (and the kids) over and over that because i love them, i will …
each kiddo is different. these are the latest…

h: because i love you, i will provide you service opportunities in the home.
a: because i love you, i will follow through on your education, homework, and school projects.
m: because i love you, i will insist you brush your teeth.
t: because i love you, i will not allow you to bite, hit, or kick me.
e: because i love you, i will teach you how to accomplish hard things.
s: because i love you, i will let you cry to sleep and learn to comfort yourself.

This last one, with Scotty, is the most poignant example this past week.
As a parent, I don’t always follow through on what is best, it’s true.
I sometimes choose to do what is easy in the moment because there are too many overwhelming things going on.
Giving Scotty a bottle to suck while falling asleep in his crib became one of those easy things.
He enjoys sucking as a calming technique… but he didn’t like a pacifier.
We used to let him cry it out and it would seriously be like an hour. over and over again.

I knew we needed to just buckle down and figure out a way to have him cry it out and not have it keep other kiddos (and parents!) awake. Hello… he’s like 15 months old.
I also knew that during our move wouldn’t be a good time because he is so sensitive to his environment.
So, after our apartment… after heading to San Antonio for Thanksgiving, we came home and let him get used to his room for a few days.

This past weekend, I was feeling strong and knew we needed to get rid of bottles for good. I was tired of having milky-stinky-blankies and jammies from his bottle. Tired of getting up in the middle of the night if he fussed.

so – the result… He cried for 37 minutes. Long and hard.
Jimmy wanted to get him at 31 minutes.
Six minutes later he was asleep.

Next nap day… cried it out.
Next night… 10 minutes of crying.
Either it was the magical time for this 15 month old or we should have done this a year ago.
We kept trying… just wasn’t working due to who knows what reasons

So now he cries briefly and then calms and then sleeps. And he doesn’t get up in the middle of the night.
Pamper him with a bottle in bed, and he wakes in the middle of the night needing to be pampered.
Toughen him up by crying it out, and he sleeps through the night.
All bottles have been thrown away. NO MORE BOTTLES … ever!
True Story.

So, the moral is… do what is right as a parent. Be Strong.
Remind yourself that because you love this child, you will teach appropriate living and eternal truths.

My wish is that I always knew what was the right path to take in parenting.
I’m so willing to be strong and teach truth. But knowing the HOW is hard in each specific situation.
(like what to do if one certain 6-year-old steals your $5 and buys spirit sticks at school and then lies about it!)
… What the most appropriate consequence is… what lesson God needs us and them to learn.
It’s tricky business – this parenting thing.

I realize this post shows a parenting weakness in me.
But I thought it was really important for me to note that following the promptings of the Holy Ghost with parenting will help us be strong to teach these behaviors and truths.

End of the School Year

2015-05-may1-webWow… the end of the school year is busy-crazy-busy. Why must they shove everything into one month. Final projects, graduations, more final projects, more graduations. And my kids aren’t even out of elementary school! But many of these events have been fantastic experiences in one way or another.

Abe earned his Arrow of Light for cub Scouts. He has worked so hard on these requirements. It takes many to keep things going in scouts. Today is his 11th birthday. Grandma & Grandpa gave him a Pogo-Stick. We all gave it a try last night and boy-howdy was it fun. Haven’t seen a smile that big on Jimmy in a while. Abe enjoys laughing and playing with friends. He is so talented as a builder of Legos. I believe he’ll grow up to enjoy engineering or something of the sort someday. He has a tender heart and a great soul. The past bit, he’s been willing to play minecraft and let Truman and Max watch. They love that!

On that same night Truman graduated from preschool. Jimmy attended that event, but I saw the cute videos and pictures. What a delight! He said, “Hi, my name is Truman and I’m 5 1/2. When I grow up, I want to be a dad!” He has a great little soul deep inside! We’ve perhaps had the hardest 6 months with behavior and aggression with this kiddo. Challenges… and lots of “stretching opportunities” as parents. But when we see the real Truman shine, we know there are great things in store for this strong leader.

Hannah had a time machine presentation/skit. She was the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi, “the Goddess of wealth, love, prosperity (both material and spiritual), fortune, and the embodiment of beauty.” We spent oodles of time on her costume. She is more of a perfectionist than I am, if it’s possible. She loves the extra mile! It turned out fantastic though. After school I told her she had to be done being a glorious goddess and start being a worker bee. It takes the entire family doing their part for us to survive these days. She definitely pulls her own weight … plus covers for the others who don’t. I tear up at the thought of her growing up and away. Boo… but Hurray!!! for her, too.

Scotty learned to crawl for reals (graduated from inch worm!) today. He loves going under the table. Our floor is definitely not baby proof. We need to mop … and sweep … and sweep some more… crumbs galore. He reminds me of a puppy because he is always crawling under everything to get to the cords to chew on… only he’s not quite as fast as a puppy yet. I feel this boy has energy… waiting to be unleashed as soon as he is confident in his mobility. He has a cheerful disposition which might save him… he seems to gain energy from people (extrovert) and cheers hearts wherever he goes.

Max… favorite thing about Max lately is his Polynesian Warrior Dance for the school dance festival. He loved it. I loved attending that event. So great to see the kids learn new dances. Abe did an African Dance. Hannah actually held a boy’s hand (andrew) and did the swing. They were pretty great at keeping the rhythm.

Eliza… oh eliza… she is the queen of drama (I won’t let the kids say it to her… but it’s true). She gets hurt about 20 times a day and comes wailing to mama. We focus on courage. “God made you strong, Eliza. He gave you courage.” She is also a delight and says super funny things that I wish I could catch on video. Her latest is that instead of having to go potty, she says, “I am wiggling, mom.” Today she said, “I don’t want to go home.” I told her that dad was at home. “Oh, I love dad. But, I love you too mom. I love you too.” She has a darling high pitched 3-year-old voice. She’s Miss Bossy and has a bit of spice in her. Gotta hold her own, I suppose.

The weather is dull to comment on. But it’s significant! RAIN! Green everywhere! Rain! Love it. We’ve had more rain this May than in the past 3 Mays combined. I’m hoping some of the water restrictions will be lifted so we can have green grass and a plentiful garden this year. We live in a beautiful place. The ponds, the skies, the mountains… especially when green… are so amazingly wondrous.

Jimmy. Oh, my love! He works so hard for our family. He digs the dandelions out of the lawn. It is looking fantastic. And … drum-roll… He finally found a new job that seems like a good fit. He worked for the LDS Church for nearly 7 1/2 years. We’ve wanted to move East for the past year or so but none of the jobs have panned out… not in Maryland… not in North Carolina (that was my winter dream location), not in Texas (Jimmy always wants to move to Texas). He applied for a job on LinkedIn with Treehouse Interactive (changing name soon to ImPartner), a small company that was just bought out for 17 million… and is expected to grow rapidly in the next 4 years). He’s always wanted to work for a small company and we feel like this is the least-risky way to go as far as small companies. I’m so grateful for the work experience and associations and growth Jimmy had working at the church. So grateful! It was a splendid time for many things. He grew so much. And though it’s time to move on (and though I’ll miss DMBA insurance … and free SLC office building parking), I hope this is another new learning experience that will provide new opportunities.

As for Heather. This is perhaps the hardest year of my life. Many challenges and mountains to climb. Health… parenting aggressive and disrespectful boys … so many who need all at once… physical tiredness from children pushing on my body (“Yes, I must be old” said the 39-year-old mother of 6 under 12), learning life’s spiritual lessons and how to apply gospel principles to challenging situations. But we receive many blessings. Many blessings are given to us daily and I seek to see these tender mercies. Quiet hour after tots go to bed is a tender mercy and time for rejuvenation. Good, happy moments as a family! A good spouse. Good kiddos who are trying. God is good to us.

Heart Health – update

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This is the silliest thing to post on a blog.
But I know my sister and mom will be interested.
Plus, It’s a great place to keep a record that I won’t lose. Smile.

You’ll remember in December my Triglycerides were over 300. Yikes.
I was just 5 months out on a gestational diabetes pregnancy.

Come January – I cut out sugars (I’m talking candy and sweet treats)… tried to cut out processed carb junk.
Ate oodles of veggies & a wee bit of fruit.
Lost 8 pounds.
Never snuck in exercise.

Come April – I went back to normal eating and enjoying treats…
gained back the 8 pounds. boo.
still never snuck in exercise.

But, I suppose the good news is that my Triglycerides normalized a bit more which helps me feel better about pre-diabetic stuff with glucose levels regulating, etc.

But it’s all still higher than I’d want.
So – looks like healthy eating (lifestyle changes) & exercise is going to help level out those cholesterol numbers.

M.I.A. … in the trenches

I’ve been missing in action on this here bloggie.
I’ve been lost in the trenches of motherhood.
I shouldn’t say lost…
I should say “I’m Rejoicing in the Trenches of mothering little ones” …
but during the month of February it felt more like ‘lost’…
(Probably didn’t help that 3 of us had strep throat … nastiest sore throat… bleh!)

How does one parent these kiddos …
these children who have such unique needs and nurturing?
The constancy of needs the past few months has zapped me.
Every night I try to rejuvenate and hope for the deepest rest to my body, soul, and mind.
This kind of rest comes only through Jesus Christ. I know this is true!
… but accessing His power … I’m working on that.

HE is there ready to bless and help and teach and comfort mothers.
Am I in the same place … on the same frequency?
Am I taking the time to adjust my spiritual tuner…
Spending the quiet moments (are there quiet moments?!) in the word of God?
Pray… He is there!

1 nephi 3 7
This week I read 1 Nephi 3:7 … the Spirit touched me in a unique way at the end of this familiar scripture.
In regards to mothering … to nurturing … to teaching children.
God will provide a way … as we keep His commandments.
He will! … provide a way.
So many questions I have about teaching and nurturing and living joyfully.
I hope in those most difficult moments of decisions I will be on the right wavelength to SEE the way.

anyhoo…. enough of my inner-most ramblings…

Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 1.38.16 PM Here’s a small capture of life via my instagram feed.

Hannah painting the Orion nebula for her astronomy project… she began last week with Pastel Chalks… that didn’t turn out like she envisioned. She’s doing great on the painting and I can’t wait to see the completed version.

This outfit was created by the girl who recently lectured her 3-year-old friend about modesty. True story! . . . Leggings, Liza. Leggings!

We’ve got a winter hat, spring cropped pants, summer swimsuit, and autumn jacket with a broken zipper. And once upon a time this morning I braided her hair so tidy like Ana’s. Only she took them out 15 minutes later. Never a dull moment with this drama queen around!!

Jimmy’s head was on the news. . . Right in the front by the red headed guy. Crazy train ride home with over an hour wait. Luckily he ran into an old friend from Florida, who gave him a ride to his car. He almost was on the train that had the collision, but was delayed by a few minutes and thus was on the train behind. #blessings

I’m pretty sure that after our trip to the library we are quite ready for Dr. Seuss day on March 2. Truman loves them. Tonight we read ‘oh say can you say’ which is the craziest book of tongue twisters. Tru giggled so much! [ A few days later I was having a very emotional and tiring mothering night… Tru was relentlessly intense. I was trying to finish up the bedtime routine by reading Fox in Socks. Big tears starting pouring out of my eyes. It’s so hard to read Fox in Socks when you’re crying. sigh… ]

Go For it! Cacao Nibs. Not sure what to do with them yet… but dark chocolate has awesome nutrients (when there’s no sugar involved!).

Organizing quote. I’m emotionally gathering courage to conquer my house so that someday when the opportunity arises we can move without major problems.

Liza’s art work… I love this for lots of reasons. 1. First time for liza using scissors and stick glue. 2. Sorting by colors is a first too. This one is definitely going on the fridge!

Truman would rather hold the pettit’s new chicks than go see big hero 6 at the sticky shoe theater. This is why we need to live on a farm. . . For Truman.

Abe solved the Rubik’s cube. After hours and hours of practicing, he has accomplished this feat. For mastering this skill and proving he had motivation to conquer, he earned a new Brain Game – the Perplexus maze ball.

Simplicity brings Freedom quote. It is much easier to read about decluttering and simplifying than actually doing it. I guess you have to realize that all the hard work is going to be worth it to be closer to the tidy life/home you see aiming for. How to do this amidst mothering, I’m not sure.

Maybe she always gets to be the princess because 1. The dresses fit her. 2. She’s way too adorable to ever be the bad guy/mother.

Mother Gothel… Why is it that I always have to play the part of mother gothell? Can’t I be rapunzel for once. Last week I was allowed to be the fairy godmother instead of the wicked step mother. Moms always get the hard part. #maybeineedtobeanicermom

There’s the brief summary of our life as of late.
I know there is LIGHT … even when I’m in the trenches, I see the LIGHT.
Somedays it’s harder than others, I admit.
But there are always BLESSINGS!
Always!

In fact… the other night when kissing Truman at bedtime, we talked about what to do the next day. He perked up and came up with a great idea to make a list of things to do at certain times. For some reason, my heart was so full of love for him… like my heart could explode from love. I love those moments.

Today, little Liza came right into my face and with her cutest voice said something darling. She is in love with all her uncles and can’t wait to see them this summer so she was saying something about Uncle Phil and that he is family. Even though this girl is so full of spice and whines half the day over who knows what, my heart is so full of love for her… and all the kids in these bright moments.

love you.

will ya make it?

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The other day abe asked if i thought i’d make it to my 40s.
and then i laughed…
really hard.

ok – so i’m old … er.
39.

but see… i’m still alive.
I’m still walking.
I’m still hiking (when it’s not 30 degrees outside).
I’d bike if i had a bike.

But I’m afraid I will never run a marathon.
And that’s okay.

One huge goal is to get healthier this year… exercise, eating real foods, scripture time, etc.
It’s going to be a long haul …
but hopefully it’s
Onward and upward…

Kindred Spirits

12 december 20144Today a few of the Academy for Girls Counselors gathered to attend the temple & chat at a tasty brunch @ Emily Synder’s home. So fun! I chose to go be with my parents at Grandma Beck’s home to help move stuff out so I missed the temple. But luckily, Jimmy, who had come to help as well, was willing to work on his laptop while I chatted with friends at Emily’s in Alpine! They live in a lovely place so close to the mountains. The snow was lovely (it helped that we had blue skies & sunshine). It was a freezing day with a high of 20. But that doesn’t stop Academy Girls from gathering. These are the huggiest people I know. With smiles and a few teary eyes, we reconnect and realize how much we need each other. #womenNEEDwomen as Katie Hughes says! These righteous women share their triumphs, their blessings, their hardships, their struggles … and we grow together. I’m so grateful for this group of friends who are striving to live closer to Christ. Good, good people! … “My people!” as Carrie said.

i just kept walkin’

Lindor-Truffles-Dark-Chocolate-im-130326-1
Went to Costco today.
Samples galore.
an entire Dark Chocolate Lindor Ball…
for free.
and i walked right by.
it’s true . . . my pace slowed
BUT I DID NOT STOP!

Do you know how much I adore the divine softness & flavor
of a Lindor Dark Chocolate?!

One little success for my cholesterol.

oops – heart health woes

I went to dr. christensen for a yearly physical.
I check my thyroid yearly (was smack in the middle of normal this time @ 2.88).
Needed glucose #s checked to ensure gestational diabetes was safe. (slightly elevated but fine)
Blood Pressure was fine (but I’m still on medication for that)
Had a nasty mole removed on the bottom of my foot (benign).
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Didn’t anticipate my cholesterol being so bad.
If you see the normal ranges … and then my numbers, you’ll see that my triglycerides are out of control (361 … uh, yah, right!). Whoa girlfriend!

Time for change of life style. Plus with bad cholesterol being high … and good cholesterol being low … and overall cholesterol too high, I need to up my healthy foods and hop on that treadmill.

A bit of info on Triglycerides according to the MayoClinic. These sections are actually quite realistic in my body. Boo.

Simply put, triglycerides are fat in the blood and are used to provide energy to the body. If you have extra triglycerides, they are stored in different places in case they are needed later.

High triglycerides are often a sign of other conditions that increase the risk of heart disease and stroke as well, including obesity and metabolic syndrome — a cluster of conditions that includes too much fat around the waist, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, high blood sugar and abnormal cholesterol levels.

Sometimes high triglycerides are a sign of poorly controlled type 2 diabetes, low levels of thyroid hormones (hypothyroidism), liver or kidney disease, or rare genetic conditions that affect how your body converts fat to energy.

So – the Brand New Me Plan is thus:
1 lower carbs
2 increase veggies & fruits
3 lower carbs
4 increase exercise – (when will i do this? i don’t know, people.)
5 lower carbs
6 drink water (because i hardly drink any right now. and yes, my entire body feels sloggy and sludgy)
7 lower carbs
8 increase omega 3s (supposed to help triglycerides)
9 lower carbs
10 eat 2 Tbsp of coconut oil & cinnamon every day (janey gave me this tip. can’t hurt)

Could I even pretend to do whole30? I don’t know.
I do want to try zucchini noodles.
I do love lots of veggies.
I do love fruit.
Don’t love protein.
Don’t love random veggies & spices.
Do love carbs (oops!)

p.s. fyi

How to Lower Your Triglycerides Naturally {http://blog.healthychoicenaturals.com/}
Though high triglycerides can lead to serious health problems, the good news is that the lifestyle changes listed below can go a long way toward getting your levels back to normal.

1. If you’re overweight, cut back on calories to reach your ideal weight.
2. Avoid unhealthy fats like trans fats, but do eat healthy fats like those from olive oil, nuts and avocados.
3. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
4. Reduce your intake of alcohol, as even small amounts can raise triglyceride levels.
5. Get plenty of omega-3 fats, either from wild-caught, low-mercury fish or from a high-quality fish oil supplement.
6. Cut back on sugary foods and drinks, as sugar increases insulin production, which in turn increases triglycerides.
7. Exercise at a moderate intensity for at least 30 minutes five or more days a week.
8. Use stress-management tools to help you relax. Studies show that stress causes triglycerides to stay in your blood longer, so the less stress you face, the better.

never enough time

there is never enough time to do all that i desire.
such is life, i suppose.
and thus we prioritize
to sleep, eat, & work
and attempt to save energy and emotional strength
for the essentials of family life.
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blogging and journal writing is something that keeps me going
but whenever i feel behind on it, i freeze.
where do i even begin again?

there’s the lesson i taught.
the lessons i’ve learned.
the funnies from the kids.
the hard days.
the days of sunshine.
the food i adored and took a picture of.
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the trip we took.
the vacation it wasn’t
(not that it wasn’t fun… it just was constant work & a bit o’ adventure thrown in)
the book i read and want to share.
the important after-school moments/conversations with kids that need to be remembered.
the thoughts/questions i ponder and want to explore.
the testimony i want to voice.
the friends who have served us.
the pictures i love.
the tender mercies given.
the paintings i connect with.
the colors that cheer.
the people i love and want to remember.
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so many things to ponder.
to share.
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but living is more important than blogging… and thus we live.
but the day/time for blogging will come and hopefully my wee little brain can remember
and have energy for all that i hope to record.
someday my 100s of drafts might get published in the family record.
smile.

Love – the Essence of the Gospel

I taught the TFOT lesson today on President Monson’s April 2014 Message: Love, the Essence of the Gospel.

My favorite part was comments by sisters in our ward. Bearing testimony of tender mercies. Teaching that LOVE is a spiritual gift. Learn to love ourselves in a healthy way. Charity, the pure LOVE of God, never fails. We can be filled with the LOVE of God as we pray and ask Him for this gift.

Oh, how I need this gift, especially in this phase of life as mother to little ones.

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