attempting to be resourceful

I often choke at the price of laundry detergent. I have this dream that all my clothes will be perfectly clean and will smell like Tide forever. But… I don’t buy Tide … and my laundry doesn’t smell fresh forever. Oh well.

Since my yummy smelling clothes dream isn’t coming true, I figured I may as well go even cheaper and make my own detergent. I never wanted to do the liquid homemade kind, but figured I could try this powder one. We don’t have an HE so I’m thinking it’s going to be fine. Hannah loved that the soap looked like grated cheese. Next time I may use my food processor so it is more refined.

Thank you Pinterest for the linkie to this Laundry Soap Recipe. I’ve only done 3 batches so far, but it got out red popsicle and chocolate without me pre-treating it. I have yet to do whites though. We’ll see how bright they look afterwards.

Believe in yourself

This one made me laugh. Why is it that we always think everyone else is amazing but don’t recognize the good we do? It’s so true of so many women.

We were reading Matthew 4 last night as a fam. The devil was tempting Jesus during his 40 day fast. Among other things, Satan was trying to make Christ question who he was. “Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.” (vs 7) Christ knew who he was and what his purpose was.

Hmmm… this provides some good things to think about. My challenge: see the good that I do and don’t let Satan discourage me from knowing who I am and what my purpose is. Off to get Saturday chores under control (as they really are never “done”)

a small success

Yesterday I was complaining to Jimmy, upon his return home, that the older kids don’t seem to get any of their work done unless mom is breathing down their neck. And because I took a nap, I woke to kids playing the computer and a messy downstairs. I guess they figure when mom is being lazy, they can be lazy. Only… I wasn’t being lazy – right?

anyhoo… right after I was done complaining to Jimmy, what to my wondrous ears did I hear?

“Mom, what can I do to help?” from Mr. Abraham.

Sing Praises.

I hung up the sign on the fridge on Thursday. Abe didn’t see it until yesterday morning. Smile.

I recently read a conference talk (of which I can’t find the source)… that told parents not to be discouraged when it seems their children are slow to learn. I realized that Heavenly Father has been so patient with me being so slow to learn… that I need NOT be dismayed when it seems the tots aren’t learning very quickly (uhhh…. like my 2 year old).

Every day I know I need to look for the good that is happening in my home. The go-the-extra-mile moments from the kids. When Hannah is well, she is an awesome helper. She volunteers to make dinner… or at least decide what to have for dinner. Abe wants to learn to cook and enjoys helping. Sometimes they do their chores without complaining. Grin. Even little Tru loves to help. He feels needed. He’s great at helping to empty the dishwasher. Max loves to work together, though struggles to get his chores done on his own. Progress may seem slight, but it is still progress… this I must remember.

6 LITTLE words make a big difference

I finally hung this message up on the fridge. I’m hoping the kids will catch the vision & start asking this more often. It’s a great principle of service & going the extra mile if we can all do this a little better in our home. Now… come to think of it… I don’t think I’ve heard anyone ask this question willingly since I hung up the sign… I did place the words in Hannah’s thoughts and thanked her for going the extra mile by wiping off the table without being asked. Sigh…

This is our new desktop image on our computer… for all in the fam to read and see. We’ve had way too much contention in our home this summer. I reread this promise by Elder Marion G. Romney. We are almost finished reading the Book of Mormon. Hurray! We can all work on doing more meaningful study as a family – and I definitely can improve on my reading. We need these blessings in our home. I bet even better personal scripture reading for Hannah and Abe would help their attitude and generosity with each other. Sigh… always striving.

In other news. I came across a different version of this quote on pinterest. It’s really just quite true (though completely unrelated to anything else on this post).My favorite is when I have an errand to run at Deseret Book (when someone else is watching my kids). Sometimes I think I could just curl up in the corner and fall asleep… it’s so peaceful. zzzzzzzzzz. . .

This week we’re packing up for our vacation/trip. Live Long & Prosper.

speaking of positive affirmations

doesn’t it always seem like the day after you recommit to doing a certain thing better…
that certain thing becomes extra hard.
either Heavenly Father wants to see if we are really committed to improvement…
no matter how hard.
Satan, the booger, presses down on us to dissuade us from excelling.
maybe a bit of both.

Tasks that used to be small & simple become monumental
when baby sissy needs to be snuggled all day (blast those shots … and teeth breaking through)…
and when tru & max start playing swords with the silverware
they are supposed to be emptying from the dishwasher.
There is not even enough time or energy for the “necessary” & “best”.
This is where I need to learn more about becoming transformed daily by GRACE … relying on the Atonement.

i think i can…
i think i can…
i think i can…

After a long day …
these will help too.

ya ho, ya ho, a mothering we will go…

bedtime: 10:30 p.m.
body rests…
mind still swirling from the crazy day
with thoughts of how to get it all done.
life stuff.
necessary stuff.
but also fun stuff.

a message or two stuck in my mind.
see the pink & green lines… written just for me!
i’m working on this.
it requires selflessness, determination, listening ears & heart, and balance.

This is the goal I want to work on this summer…
having my attitude align with this principle of simplifying
and allowing the most important focus of teaching & loving children to step forward.

i believe my mind can rest now.
I’ve solved all my problems.
Not really… but sorting things out and setting goals helps.


Dear Grandma Nelson,

Thank you for loving Basic-H. Know that your influence will be felt in this Smith household every time we clean. The kids can spray and scrub windows and bathrooms without feeling intoxicated by stinky chemicals.

Thank you Quaker Duck.
~ Heather

I’ve decided to get rid of all the cleaners with fumes:
1. Honestly, I don’t use all the random cleaners I buy. Waste.
2. Truman really likes to help scrub windows and I feel bad when the wind blows the spray into his face. Ick.
3. Simplify.

The down side:
1. I always think cleaning with vinegar is such a great idea until I use it again and then I’m reminded how much it really, really, really stinks the whole fam out.
2. No matter what cleaners you use, the work still has to be done.

The new plan:

1. Basic-H. I have the 3 spray bottles for windows, general cleaning, and degreasing. It is a concentrate so it only takes a tiny amount (like 2 drops – 1 1/2 tsp for a big spray bottle)

2. Baking Soda. I bought a huge bag once for something in R.S. so I have oodles.

3. Vinegar … just a little. Or I might just cut this out period.

4. Essential oils. I’ve been using lemon oil & Citrus Bliss with a bit of soap with water in a spray bottle to wash kitchen counters. I love how it smells – way different than lemon and orange smells from store products. The oils are disinfecting so I feel like the counters are clean … yet safe to put food on afterwards. The Essential Oils will hopefully help hide the stinky vinegar.

5. OnGuard Cleanser. I’m curious to try this and see how well i think it cleans & sanitizes.

These are some sources in the DoTerra Magazine that I liked:

I guess we’ll see how this new plan goes over the next little while. May my house become super clean someday! There is always hope!

Sunday Lesson: Making Home a bit of Heaven

Once upon a time I decided I should teach our R.S. Lesson about Compassion in the Home. It just didn’t come together. Oh – I had lots of fabulous talks to study, but I wasn’t feelin’ it.

Final topic: Home can be a bit of heaven on Earth. (can ya tell this is something I knew we needed to work on? yeppers! especially after the week of spring break)

Saturday night I was still wondering which direction it needed to go. Oh – once again I had 17 pages of fabulous resources. There were several awesome scriptures I wanted to focus on.

In the end, I sat down and explained the dilemma with Jimmy. I’ve had a hard time focusing on one direction. Maybe I’m just a spaz this week and am going quickly in all directions. This is not the Lord’s way.

Jimmy helped guide my thoughts so the Spirit could teach me what to do. It’s one of the “Prepare & Study … and TEACH and listen to the Holy Ghost to see where the lesson needs to go.” Scary? – a bit. Okay? Sure!

Here are the random messages I thought through this week about Home – Balance – Duty – Joy – Love – Gathering – Teaching – Wisdom – Order.

In the end … we had a lot of participation discussing Mosiah 4:27 and how it related to making home a bit of heaven. Keep calm. Rally the Troops. Be YOU! Don’t compare. Identify your skills and focus on the positive. Attitude. Priorities. Select ONE thing (not 15 things!!) that you can do (not your spouse or children – but things YOU can affect) to help your home be a bit more like heaven.

The following quotes I love.  They come from an article in the August 2010 Ensign: All Things in Wisdom and Order by ELDER JOHN C. TAGGART.

“All things must be done”: Those who accept the blessings of the gospel are bound by covenants to act in certain ways. We have general duties—nurturing our children, serving others, keeping the commandments—and we have specific duties that arise out of our own choices, the Church callings we receive, the promises we make, and the obligations we freely accept. The counsel to not “run faster than [we have] strength” does not excuse us from these things.

“Be diligent”: We sometimes mistakenly think the word endure means grim plodding in the face of adversity. Not so. While mortality was not meant to be free of challenges, the Lord has promised both peace and happiness in this life and unimaginable blessings in the life to come for “them that love him”. To persist or persevere means to remain on the path. Those who do so find, to their delight, that the journey brings moments of surprising joy and great blessings, even as the way grows rocky or steep.

“A man should [not] run faster than he has strength”: We are all bound to honor our covenants, but all are not asked to carry the same load. Our charge is to magnify what we are given by the Lord, however large or small it may be. We each possess different gifts, abilities, and capacities.

“Done in wisdom”: Hardest of all is achieving the right mix or balance between competing good things. No secret formula will achieve this for us. We must avoid the “false balance” (Proverbs 20:23) that becomes a mere excuse for avoiding difficult choices. Self-awareness—an honest assessment of our strengths and weaknesses—is critical. Then righteous living, thoughtful meditation, and heartfelt prayer place us in the path of heavenly inspiration as we make daily decisions. The counsel of those who love us helps us find our way in a world increasingly filled with enticements, distractions, false promises of pleasure, and empty rewards of worldly achievement at the expense of heavenly blessings. The right balance is probably different for each person and also changes for each person over time. Above all, a person grounded in the gospel of Jesus Christ and enjoying the sweet companionship of the Holy Ghost will find balance, even—or especially—in the face of overwhelming, unavoidable burdens.

Priority or Seasonality
“All things … in order”: The writer of Ecclesiastes taught, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1).

hearing the call from the Spirit

So – I guess there is some political mumbo-jumbo going on out there about Hilary Rosen commenting that Ann Romney “never worked a day in her life” as a stay-at-home-mom.

I wasn’t offended by Hilary Rosen.  I KNOW it’s the hardest work out there (especially when you have a 2-year-old!).   I wasn’t surprised to hear something like this though; I wouldn’t expect the majority of those in our society to praise women staying home and “sacrificing” their career (this is set aside for another post).  It’s only the most awesome opportunity ever… and they are so missing out.

Thankfully, I don’t look to the world for approval … I hear the call from the Spirit … helping me know what my purpose and role is. I love the YW video “Be Strong: I Know Who I Am” that shares this message applicable to all, at any age:

I have a purpose.
He has a plan.
I have a witness.
I know who I am –
A chosen daughter of noble birth.
The Father’s mission to fill on earth.
I’ll follow His Beloved Son.
And in His Name, I can become.
And as I grow, His light will too.
and that light will strengthen you.

When the world’s temptations –
seem to call you by name.
Be strong, be strong.
When they question everything
you put your faith in every day

Be strong, be strong.
And if you stand for something right and stand alone,
Remember through his chosen servants
God will lead you back home.

Be His, Be One, Be Strong.

I try not to fuss over politics too much as it bugs … but I’m glad I had this conversation with Jimmy about this recent situation as it made me really think about how important I know my role is as mother. Now – if I could just be the calm, sweet soul-of-a-mother that I know is in there somewhere.

I love this reminder as it relates to motherhood: “The small and simple things you choose to do today will be magnified into great and glorious blessings tomorrow.” Ann Dibb

PRESS FORWARD SAINTS … with steadfast FAITH in Christ!

love ya hon

Missing my love. I like US!

I love the doctrine of family, marriage, eternity together, love.