Saturday, August 24, 2013

Little bits

Every day around me there are little bits of loved ones.  Some of the ones I use most frequently belonged to my Grandma Smith.

I can still see this stack of bowls in the corner of her counter, stacked and ready to be filled with potato salad or fresh cucumbers and onions from her garden.

And these are the pots she cooked with most.  I'm sure the original handles had long since been broken and were replaced by these wooden ones from my grandpa.

She could be a mean old woman.  Never shy to say if you were getting fat.  But I loved her.  I'd spend a week at a time with her during the summer.  Once I was woken up by her making this strange bird call at 7 in the morning!  In the summer!  Trying to attract a cardinal and I'm sure failing miserably.  But still she tried. (birdie, birdie, birdie)  I can still remember the way her house smelled.  And still wanting to go and stay, even though I know ghosts roamed at night.  (truly...stairs don't creak by themselves one at a time....)  I miss her.

I hope everyone has little bits of their loved ones.  Sometimes physical reminders are so nice, especially when a lot of time has passed.  It makes them feel more real, instead of just a memory.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A little testimony strengthened.

Upon returning from Ohio, Ryan has been having issues with going to sleep/staying asleep.  Bon and I are getting frustrated and we're trying really hard to keep to a routine, but sometimes things just don't go smoothly at bedtime.  Last Saturday at one in the morning, Ryan kept popping up out of bed and Bon became so frustrated he went to the basement to sleep.  Ryan came into bed with me and slept, finally.  Ryan wants someone with him; Bon and I just want to be alone at night.  

So as I laid there, I was saying a silent prayer, once again, praying for Ryan, for ways we can help him, for inspiration on how to help him, what to say, etc.  I was tired and frustrated and I think about halfway through my prayer, I just questioned if He was even there.  Was He even listening?  Did He even care?  

Fast forward to the next morning, we walked into the chapel and I was approached by the Executive Secretary.  Would I give the closing prayer?  I wanted to turn to him and say "Are you kidding me??" because I just had this internal struggle and I really don't like praying in public to begin with.  But I agreed.  

Fast forward to the closing prayer.  As I was walking toward the podium, I felt this overwhelming love.  I felt this peace and comfort and assurance that He is there and He does care.  He hears our prayers and He loves each and every one of us.  I croaked through a closing prayer, grabbing a tissue on the way down. 

On Tuesday, we had a RS presidency meeting and I had the spiritual thought.  I shared this experience from Sunday and this scripture.  

Moroni 10:7 And ye may know that he is, by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore I would exhort you that ye deny not the power of God; for he worketh by power, according to the faith of the children of men, the same today and tomorrow, and forever. 

In my patriarchal blessing, I am promised many things as long as I have faith.  That brings me comfort when I remember those blessings.  I often feel imperfect and I know I have many shortcomings, but I know that with my faith, I can only grow and become stronger in the gospel.   

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Whirlwind Summer

Last day of school

This summer seemed to rush by.  Before school was even out, we were at swim team practices.  Once school was out, the mornings were booked with swimming and Thursday evenings were spent at meets.  It was a fun experience and all of the kids did so well and progressed so much.  The kids gained confidence in the water and it has been such a blessing for me to not have to watch them like a hawk when we go swimming.

In July we went to Ohio.  We spent some time with Bon's parents, my parents and some time at the farm.  With the Carters, we shot guns and knitted on looms.  With the Smiths we went to Limestone Lake and went to the park and out for ice cream.  At the farm we spent time with Jenny, did the annual shopping with her and her friend Alice.  While we were there, a big storm passed through and a couple big branches came down from some trees and almost hit the house.  That's when we called in some help and had some guys cut the two trees down that were closest to the house.  They did a good job and they did it for free.  We payed them in popsicles, since it was really hot.  I'm grateful they were able to help us.

Limestone Lake

Limestone Lake

Storm damage right after the storm.

Storm damage in the sun.  :)

Without the trees.  :(

We ended the summer with being at home and getting ready for school.  It was a few weeks of playing with friends, going to the pool and the last couple of days were spent with Mary and her girls.

Chess at the library.

Sacked out on our bed.

Lunch with Mary and her girls before they left.

The kids are excited about their new teachers.  Reagan has Mrs. Sebastian, Ryan has Mrs. Williams (Reagan had her last year!) and Ty has Mrs. Smith.  We've met them and they all seem like wonderful teachers.  Their first day was yesterday, the 7th, and they came home chatting up a storm.  I don't think Reagan stopped talking the rest of the night.

First day of school.  Ryan was excited too, just mad that Ty had tried putting his arm around him too.