Friday, April 25, 2008

Happy 20th Birthday Ky! 4.23.2008

I am two days late with this post - the crazy internet was down.

Happy Birthday Ky - you are out of teenville for good! Hooray!
Twenty things about Ky -
1. My smallest baby at 6 lbs 11 oz and 19 inches long. Tiny.
2. Love your thick brown hair. Tried to love it when in 3rd grade you were determined to grow out your bangs...
3. You were never a pink girl, I had to stop buying that color by 3rd grade.
4. You have always loved school.
5. You want to become a teacher.
6. Hooray for the acceptance from the university into the education department. Next fall you are on your way to becoming Mrs. J, 4th grade teacher!
7. Love how you love your brothers and sister. Your patience is endless with them.
8. Love how you call to just talk about whatever - even that crazy mechanic looking at EJ's car, I am still laughing about that one now.
9. When you are sick the only thing that will do is Chicken and Stars AND Sleepless in Seattle. (You can keep my copy).
10. So much fun at all the Sephora's we could find in NY!
11. Seeing Wicked with you.
12. You have learned the fine art of housekeeping (or apartment keeping) and you do a pretty good job.
13. Working discounts at Gap, Old Navy - thanks for sharing!
14. Room service for Diet Coke's and cheese cake. (Sorry DH... we were tired!)
15. So happy you have found your prince - you weren't even looking. Remember when you were little you would sing "Someday my prince will come, chewing grape bubblegum!"?
16. So glad he is a Utah boy (at least for the next 2 years).
17. NOW you will have a middle name, KCJ!
18. Your strong testimony of the gospel. It is so wonderful to see you stand on your own gospel feet.
19. Loved seeing that very special temple recommend last Sunday in your hand - you ARE ready.
20. Glad we are family and glad we are friends.

Where did time go? I never planned on the leaving part of raising kids and this has come too quickly for my mother heart. I may cry in the days to come, just know that they are tears of wonderment and joy because of who you are and the new life and experiences that will soon be yours and EJ's Some of those tears will be from the pain of that final cut of those tightly wrapped apron strings. Thanks for being the first, the example to the other siblings and the light of mine and Dad's life. LOVE YOU.

The Eagle Has Landed!

The eagle has landed is DH's phrase for getting something important finally done. It was very approriate to use this week as we had a small animal crisis! Pearl, the miniture hamster was on the lam. Again! Not only was this bad, but we have a kitten named Licorice who loves to play with anything that moves... see where we are going with this? DH was out of town during all the high drama and I was nervous I would find and have to deal with a small white mass of hamster guts - yuck. Tuesday night, Patch said Mom we need to pray for Pearl. So, in her very innocent and believing way she prayed that Pearl would be okay and that please could we find her before Licorice? Patch set up the peanut butter trap (seriously, this one works! We have used it when Pearl was loose before...) in my room as she was sleeping with me. The cat was sleeping on the bed and all was kind of well.
I startled to immediate waking mode around 3:30 am when something alerted me that all was not well. The cat was missing from the bed and I could hear her running around in the kitchen. Not good. Looking around the corner, I was very glad to see there was nothing white hanging from Licorice's mouth, but realized that the rodent must be in the pantry as the cat was going CRAZY to get in there with her little paws. I do not do rodents, don't touch them, nothing. So (sorry again for this!) I woke Patch up to help capture Pearl. The cat got locked in my room and she was MAD and letting us know it. Patch opens the pantry door and there is Pearl, just sitting there. She scooped her up with a happy "Hello Pearl, there you are, you little sweet Pearl!" I just had to laugh AND text the family right then as they all knew the drama of little missing Pearl...
THE EAGLE AKA PEARL HAS LANDED IN HER CAGE! (Sorry LAX Boy, didn't know you keep your phone on and so close to you in the middle of the night. Haha.)

I wanted to include a picture of Pearl but Patch is wary of any picture of her hamsters, (yes, plural) as they might die from being startled by the flash. This happened on a very funny Drake and Josh episode...

We've been DOWN

Whew! The internet was down for a couple of days and I felt like that guy on the Today show awhile ago who actually broke down and cried on national TV because he could not go 1 WEEK without his electronic hookups - cell phone, computer, etc. I didn't cry but I bugged the family, so sorry guys!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A Life Lesson Learned

I just don't get why people turn so mean and ugly at sporting events. Why do parents think it is okay to lose control? What kind of example is that? I wonder why the refs even want to keep doing their job - the pay isn't that great to take the constant emotional throwup they get game after game.
I sat through Ernie's soccer game last night and watched these parents just go at it. There is no use in losing control, bad calls happen on both sides. Kids, and parents, need to learn to just keep playing.

We were disappointed when after a recent lose, Ernie's team shook hands with the other team and then left the field without acknowledging the referee's. No hand shakes, no thanks. There is a life lesson that isn't being taught. DH talked with Ernie about how important it is to always thank people, not just referee's, for their efforts. Last night I watched my son quietly find both the referee's and shake their hands. I was proud of him. He learned something important.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Allowing Time for Change

Early this morning I found myself in the back parking lot of the Jordan River Temple waiting for two of my boys who had gone to do baptisms. Ernie wanted to take TT for his first time and I thought that was a wonderful idea. With my DH out of town, I loaded Patch (we are off track) into the back of the car at 6:30 am with the boys and off we went. I parked in the way back so no one would wonder why I was just sitting there in my big comfy sweat shirt and pajama pants... Patch slept and I was able to read some uplifting words from Virginia Hinckley Pearce. These are her words and they really hit home to my heart this morning. I love tulips and am excitedly waiting for my lilac bush to bloom soon. Don't we all want to be the non-stop flowering wonder, ha ha!
"I stepped out into the backyard last night just as evening began to settle. I was just doing some taking and getting, turning off and closing down, when quite suddenly I inhaled. The scent of lilacs filled my whole body and hung almost visibly in the air. Everything seemed to gather around me, and I couldn't bear to go back into the house. Walking slowly around the yard, from garden to garden, bush to bush, tree to tree - I looked, felt, touched.
At first there was that quiet kind of reverence and then gradually I started gathering up sticks, tidying up and snapping off. I got a sack and a pair of scissors and started after the tulips that had been so breathtaking only a week before. Tut, tut. Here they were en masse, right in the front yard, stems pointing naked stamens into the air without their beautiful petal dresses. And next thing you know, they will have all of those yellowing leaves! What to do! Aha. I've seen those gardeners who carefully fold tulip leaves over and fasten them with a rubber band. That way, they can be allowed to send the nutrients back down to the bulb and yet passersby aren't offended by their less than spectacular state of being, and gardeners, in turn, can have a continuousely splendid looking garden.
I was just considering this tedious solution to my in-between garden, when I was overwhelmed with nature's metaphor. Nature doesn't work with on-off switches, or at continuously high RPMs. nature is organic. It cycles, it flows. There is an ebb for every tide, a time of retreat and gathering of strength for every time of flowering. This continuous ebb and flow is vital in order to renew the energy required for a continuing cycyle of life. And when it is interrupted, when the leaves are cut before they can become unsightly, the process is short-circuited. The bulb weakens and cannot produce the next season.
I sat down on the grass. Here was something for me. I have trouble with accepting the need for downtime. I want to be a continous switch, a peak producer with no valleys. I want relationships that get better continuously; I want to make cintinuous improvement myself with no temporary backsliding. I want to be able to jump up the minute after I am kicked in the stomach. I just don't want to allow time to recover and take in strength. I want to be a non-stop flowering wonder. And I want every one else to be the same. No waiting around, no retreating, no fallow non-productive times...
We want spiritual maturity, now. We want to be able to forgive immediately, to be submissive without a struggle, to understand without having to quietly study, ponder and live.
I looked at the tulips. And then I looked at myself and this world. It doesn't make any sense. What are we thinking? Instant and relentless isn't the way of eternity.
I've always wondered about the phrase "long-suffering." At first glance it seems to indicate that that being miserable for a long period of time is some kind of virtue to seek after. I don't think so! Then what could it mean? Perhaps "suffering" in this phrase could be interpreted to mean "allowing" as in "suffer the little chidren." Perhaps the Lord sees "allowing time, and allowing a long time" as a sorely needed virtue.
Could we allow time for our children to learn the lessons of life? Could we allow ourselves time to recover from periods of difficulty - time to grieve, time to heal, time to gather strength? Could we allow...individuals time to change and grow; relationships time to change and grow?
I looked at the tulip leaves again, beginning to yellow and wilt, and saw them differently. I can respectfully allow them some time. In fact, I can celebrate while I wait with them. My garden will gently call to those who walk by, "Pardon us, but good things are happening. We are gathering nourishment and preparing quietly for more glory."

Allowing time for things to happen sounds wonderful to me.

Driving home, with a stop to McDonalds, and a stop to the middle school to drop Ernie off, I enjoyed listening to TT's 12 year old words describe the beauty of the temple to his younger sister. This is a good day. I am glad I allowed for this time to happen with my kids.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The bridal portrait bouquet

Ky had her bridal portraits last Saturday. This was the ultimate dress up day! Hair, makeup, dress! Here is a picture of the bouquet that was used in her pictures. Isn't it so elegant? I love it! It is a mini of what her real wedding bouquet will be. There are white/green hydrangeas, sweet peas, green and white varigated tulips (Love These!), creamy white roses and white ranunculus (they opened to a soft yellow center). Everything was tuxedo wrapped together in a cream satin ribbon. Ky wore her grandma's pearl bracelet. They have a wonderfully close relationship and it was so generous of her to loan this to Ky.
MOST of the planning is over and the fun is really beginning now with pictures and showers. I am ready to just be able to show up and enjoy the party!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

My Zen Garden Is the Catbox!

You know how we get caught up in life and it just runs away with us? I read all these articles about “keeping it simple” and making our life’s more fulfilling and wondered to myself do we ever reach that point where life is simple? Who defines what simple is? Maybe for some, keeping it simple is living life in the moment. Concentrating on what is happening right now. I find myself thinking ahead and not always enjoying the moment. I need to remember to breathe and find joy in the moment I am in. (Note to self: It is TT's last off track time for 6th grade, I need to enjoy these 2 weeks with him. Need to make a double batch of chocolate chip cookie dough and have it for lunch with him!)

This year, instead of New Year's resolutions, I am going to set goals and evaluate where I am in life during my birthday month. Kind of unusual? Maybe, maybe not. I was reflecting on where I am and where I would like to see myself and making the two a reality. That is when I realized that for me, my zen garden is the cat box. The daily repetition of things, both the "have to do" and "love to do" things, that keep me grounded. It isn’t so bad. I have good friends, a family I love, I live in a beautiful state.
Overall not a bad place to be!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Driving, Driving, Driving Day

Today was one of those days! Driving here and there all day long.
8:10 - left to get someone, she wasn't there...
8:35 - got home to get the call to come and get her, she was there now. (why did I leave the cell phone home?)
10:00 - leave for 10:30 appointment
11:30 - coming home, passed the house where the RS luncheon was starting, FORGOT about this, to go or not to go, make a FAST fruit salad and GO socialize. Had some good key lime pie and it is easy to make.
1:00 - promised Baby (who we will now call Patch - doesn't like Baby name) to take her for some off track crafty things at Michaels and to check out Bday places.
2:00 - home again, drop off Patch, leave to pick up Ernie from school for soccer practice at another school.
3:15 - get home, give someone a ride to where they need to be. Have to buy a bucket of Lacrosse balls - DH forgot that one yesterday.
4:00 - soccer finished early, didn't get the text that there was NO PRACTICE today.
4:30 - drop off lacrosse balls to practice.
5:00 - home, dinner? No way. Pizza night. DH and I are going to Market Street for a late Bday date. Plus, I have my bday coupon! (I know, a coupon to Market Street? Yes, for a free dinner.)
I am hoping to have enough energy to have pleasant adult conversation and not fall asleep on the way there.

Forgot to mention that I received a call to fill a position (Membership VP) on the Jordan High PTSA board for next year - Hmmmm. The only thing I know about Jordan High Beetdiggers is where to find the bathroom off of the main entrance! Who even knows that I have a kid going there next year??!

Don't you love these kind of days? SOMEday I will miss them.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Happy Birthday EJ

A BIG happy birthday to our soon to be son-in-law EJ! He turned 22 today. Nice to have something else to celebrate today besides tax day. We are all happy to welcome him into the family. Do you ever wonder about those someday spouses that will join the family? Will they fit? Will you like them? Tolerate them? I have always hoped that as the kids got to this step that "the one and only" would fit, like a puzzle piece. Happily, EJ fits just fine into the family. He loves Ky like crazy and treats her so wonderfully. He says he was on the 5 year post mission plan, finish school before marriage... until he met his room mate's friends and borrowed their oil to make brownies... returned the oil...and got a date!
He has great goals for his life, served an honorable mission in the big state of Texas and has a strong foundation in the gospel. We enjoy his humor, he has told SOME (probably not all!) great stories from his teenage years and even mission that have kept us laughing for a while. He can hold his own with three active soon to be brothers-in-law. They keep wondering when it will be okay to finally wrestle him down to the ground?!
Happy day EJ. I am glad to call you son-in-law.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

5 random things about me

Thanks to my friend Pedaling I have been tagged. Here goes...
1. Much to the frustration of my family, I leave the pizza out overnight! Not that I eat it cold in the morning, but the possibility exists! Leftover pizza on the counter was my experience growing up and I didn't die.
2. I love all things scented lavender! Lotions, lip balm, oils, linen spray, laundry soap and even cleaning products. I love lavender! One of my fav websites to visit is on the sidebar, Purple Haze Lavender. Someday I will make it to their lavender festival...
3. Is reading cookbooks considered a hobby? Cookbooks and cooking magazines are a favorite read for me. Love the pictures - the food always looks so wonderful! I have been known to by a magazine just for the amazing picture on the front of some incredible dessert. Sometimes I try these recipes, but mostly I just enjoy reading them...
4. I can play and enjoy listening to the same song for the whole day. This drives my family crazy! Sorry guys and gals, but I love this and I love the repeat button on itunes and my ipod.
5. Okay, I will admit that I own the first season to Magnum PI. Tom Selleck was so fine back in the day...

I am stopping at five because it is late and I have back to back church meetings in the morning before the regular block of meetings. Busy day, but a good one.

Today was Ky's bridal pictures. The weather was beautiful and she looked wonderful. I will go more into detail on the next post!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Tea at the Grand - How Lovely!

Last Saturday we were able to celebrate the final fit for Ky's wedding dress! HOORAY! It is SO beautiful and she looks SO beautiful in it. In the spirit of such celebration, we took ourselves, the important women in Ky's life, to the Grand America for high tea. Lovely, just lovely! If you have never done this with your close sister friends, I highly recommend it. We visited, sipped herbal tea and hot chocolate, enjoyed yummy and very fussy sandwiches by fireside with the beautiful sounds of a harp nearby. Don't worry that we didn't have enough to eat... the dessert cart came by after everything else with wonderful things to sample. Delicious! After 1 1/2 hours we left comfortably relaxed and ready to continue on with wedding plans. Go there!

The cat on CATnip!

I took a sack lunch to TT today at school and was gone for no longer than 10 minutes... enough time for the cat to get on the counter and seize a FULL bag of catnip! When I came home she was fighting and clawing the bag. I was able to follow her path by the dried green trail through our living room. (Notice that her fur is covered in the stuff - she really had a great 10 minutes!) I think she is on a CATnip high!! I picked her up, took her outside and dusted her off so she can chill out. I left the evidence for Baby to see when she comes home from school. It was great to have such a spontaneous laugh today. I needed it!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Finally, I have arrived to the blogging world! Please stay tuned... this blog will need a lot of refinement as I have time here and there to get to it. The title of my blog tells it like it is - Holden On. I find that each day I need to hold on to what matters most. It is also a play on words with Holden. Holden Beach and other near by beaches have been our family favorite retreat each year for 15 years in North Carolina. The cares and worries and demands of life are left as we go to relax and enjoy our family on a beautiful stretch of beach.

Happy Birthday to me today!

One of my boys was concerned that he didn't have a gift for me. With each new birthday or holiday, I realize that gifts are highly over rated. There really isn't anything that I need. I am thankful for the gifts that I have in my life that come to me daily and weekly and probably aren't looked on by others as gifts to me.

These are the gifts that I cherish each day.
A husband who loves me and works hard each day to do his best and who wants to be home each night with all of us

My children! I am glad for the changes in ages and stages that allow for new interests and abilities. These five never cease to amaze me with their ideas, actions and humor. Love you!

My sure foundation in Christ - He is my strength and my example.