Monday, February 18, 2013

Family Fun Day - February

I haven't been updating our Family Fun Days as well as I should be.

Something about working full time and nursing school has me really busy... ;)

This last weekend we went up to Soldier Hollow to go tubing. We love getting out of the house for the day and go flying down hills way faster than one should. ;)

It was a really sunny day, causing the hills to be slower than normal. We all warmed up pretty fast and quickly shed our coats, hats and gloves. After we had all gone down three times, the wind picked up, causing us to quickly put our layers back on, before we got back in line. As we stood there, we watched the next group of people head down the hill. They were flying and several of them were unable to stop, which caused them to crash through the safety netting. One little boy was left with quite the bloody nose and had a look of panic on his face. Soldier Hollow quickly made the decision at that point to shut down the hills. The wind that had rushed in, caused the softened hills to ice over extremely fast and it was no longer safe for any of us.

Thankfully, they were very accommodating and gave us all passes to return at a later date, when it would be safer for everyone. We are going to attempt it again next month (Family Fun Day MARCH!). ;) We took a detour through Park City Main street to show the kids and then took them out to dinner at The Old Spaghetti Factory.

I felt bad that I hadn't had a chance to get a picture of Josh or Bailey on the hill,
but they were all more than happy to pose at dinner. :)

Peanut laying on her tube. She liked to be pulled around by anyone willing enough to be conned in to it.
Lazy little goober!

Lukey was not afraid at all this year. He loves going down by himself.

Ry was either mine or Bek's buddy.
In all the times we have gone, she has yet to go down by herself,
but I love watching her giggle on the way down the mountain, so it's okay. :)

Avery loves the hills and going down alone.
Big shocker, huh? ;)

Bek's ears got cold (someone forgot her hat...), so she kept putting the warmer packets on her ears.
This was right before they shut the hills down.

It was crazy how warm it first...
We got to work on our tans a little bit! ;)
(I kid. I kid. Everyone had sunblock on. I'm not completely stupid.)

Peanut being pulled up the hill.
The second time up, the poor kid was readjusting and fell off!
I turned around just in time to see her and scoop her up on my lap.

I love that they enjoy these types of activities!

Even though our day got cut short, we still had a lot of fun. I love these days, away from work and homework and chores, when we can just be together, laughing and enjoying each other's company.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Happy Birthday, Avery!!!

Dear Avery,

Eight? Already? Just last year you were born, shocking us all, five weeks early, perfectly healthy. Just a few months ago, you were toddling around after your older sisters, trying to keep up. Just last month, you were heading off to your first day of preschool, so excited that you couldn't stand it for another moment. Just last night, I tucked you into bed, after your first day of kindergarten. 

I swear...where does the time go?

You are such an amazing kid. You have the most tender heart of anyone I know and when it is broken, I can feel my own shatter into a million pieces. Your laughter is the most infectious sound I have ever heard and when I hear it, I can't help but giggle, myself.

You, my beautiful daughter, are going to change this world. You are going to make it an amazing place for others to be in, simply because they have the joy of having you in their lives. You have taught me so many things about life, other people and myself, in your short little life. For that...I can never repay you.

Happy Birthday, my wonderful girl. May you...and the rest of the world...know how much of a miracle you are. I love the moon and back.

Such a beautiful girl. I'm so proud to call you my daughter.

I love your smile. :)

You ran in the kid's mile on the 4th of July.

Summer vacation to Park City...and you're still a goober. ;)

Park City fun.

First day of second grade.

You don't like sushi. ;) We learned that, this year! 

Right before your first match!

That beautiful face is mesmerizing. I love you, sweetheart.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Spreading Myself Thin

I'm feeling the pressures of my demanding schedule this week. I worked 12 hours on Monday, had lab class and homework yesterday, I have to go into the office to meet with clients today and tomorrow? Oh boy...tomorrow. 

Tomorrow is Avery's 8th birthday. The only 8th birthday she will ever have...(well...duh, but roll with me for a minute)...and I am going to miss it. All of it. I HATE missing important moments in my kids' lives. I move heaven, hell and earth in order to prevent that. Sometimes...I can't. And it breaks my heart. 

The only other birthday I have ever missed for one of the children is Bailey's 9th birthday, because my hysterectomy became complicated and the doctor kept me in the hospital longer than we anticipated. That broke my heart too...although all the pain medication at the time allowed me to sleep though most of it. ;)

Tomorrow I have to work 12 hours in the ER, which means I will leave the house at 5:20 am, about an hour and a half before Avery wakes up. I will be done with my shift at 6 pm, but then I have a prenatal class I have to attend, for a paper I have write, from 7-9 pm. I won't get home until around 9:30 pm, about an hour and a half after Avery goes to bed. The hour in between is when Avery is in taekwondo, so I can't even see her then, if I were to come home. I'm hoping to facetime her at some point after she gets home from school, providing things are calm in the ER (Do you hear that people?!?! Do NOT come to the ER tomorrow afternoon!!).

I hate this. I hate when my school stuff interferes with my personal life. I mean, I know it will to a point, but I try my best to work around things that are incredibly important to my children. They are my entire world and my entire reason for going back to school. I want to make them proud and I want to provide for them in ways that I have been unable to in the past. 

I'm hoping that Avery understands (so far she says she does) and that the slumber party we have planned with a couple of her friends for Friday night, makes up for it. We are going out for our Mommy-Daughter date on Sunday and she picked The Old Spaghetti Factory for lunch. I'm trying to see it as a postponed birthday and not a missed birthday. 


This will all be worth it one day, right?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

It's Not My Job

Dear Children of Mine,

          I love you. It is my job, as your mother, to teach you many things. It is my job to teach you your colors, even if you spend the better part of a year convinced that everything is "blue!!". It is my job to teach you how to dress yourself and it is my job to accept your choice of shorts, a tutu, a leotard, fairy wings and tap shoes, to wear to the grocery store. It is my job to teach you how to cook Grandma's favorite recipes, how to clean a bathroom, how to start the washing machine and how to tie your shoes. It is my job to teach you how to play fairly, how to accept others and their choices, how to work hard, how to play hard and how to settle a disagreement.

          It is not my job to run your backpack to you, twice in one week, 15 miles away, because you forgot it at home.It is not my job to run all over the county finding supplies for a project that is due tomorrow, when you have known about it for two months. It is not my job to take you back home, as soon as we pull into the parking lot, to grab your dance shoes, because you need them. You knew we were going to knew you needed your dance barefoot. It is not my job to hand over my computer, when I am in the middle of a six page paper for my class, so that you can do a power point assignment that you have known about for weeks. I'm sorry that it is due tomorrow morning, but it is 9 pm and you are supposed to be in bed. It is not my job to find your taekwondo belt, five minutes before we are set to leave. I bought you a bag that your gear is supposed to go in and if you didn't put it there...oh well. Looks like it's squat thrusts, for you. It is not my job to find your lost folders, lost homework, lost pencils, lost shoes, lost coats, lost iPods, lost boots, lost socks or lost glasses.

          I love you, my dear children. I have many jobs and play many roles in your life. Teaching you responsibility and consequences are a few of the most important.


Saturday, February 2, 2013

The Talk

I had the talk with my oldest daughter a few nights ago.

No, not that talk...we've already had that talk...she is almost 12, for goodness' sake.

The talk that is triggered because she reacted in an inappropriate way toward her younger sister, because she was frustrated with her. The talk that stems from her not talking responsibility for her actions and blaming others for how she reacts. The talk that is brought about by her lack of self control.

Not only was I upset that she reacted physically, I realized that now was the time to teach my beautiful daughter a very valuable lesson that I am still learning. Every. Single. Day.

Lesson: You cannot control how others act...but you can always control your reaction to it.

Think about that for a moment. It is a statement of great strength. It does not mean that you allow yourself to be belittled, walked over or used. It means that you put yourself in the place of power. You do not allow others to dictate your reaction physically or emotionally, to any situation.

When you are younger, not understanding this lesson means that you react physically and verbally, towards the other person. Kids hit each other, sling every name they can think of back and forth... "You meanie poopie head!"...wrestle each other down, chase each other around the house and depending on the kids...whip out some taekwondo.

When you are older, not grasping this wisdom manifests into far different responses. least for me. Maybe you still chase those who offend you around the kitchen table and pin them down... When I encounter other people's negative comments, unwanted opinions and irrational actions, I take it personally. I begin to questions my self worth and it eats at me. I feel like I will never be good enough to meet other's expectations of me and it is painful.

It is difficult, at any age, to step back, take a deep breath and realize...I am reacting to this situation...and I don't have to. I have complete control over whether or not I react and how I react. I can allow another person's opinion of me to ruin my day, or I can take it for what it is...someone's opinion. It is not law. It is not fact. It is not my identity. It is someone's thought...that is then expressed verbally...usually not even to my face. If I do not give someone else's thoughts (or verbal vomit meant to provoke) any power, then it is useless.

I know that I will teach my daughter this lesson many times over her life. It is a lesson that is very difficult to learn and very easy to forget. I want her to begin to grasp this concept at her young age and develop self-confidence and self control that is impermeable to the outside world. It will create for her, a future that is limitless.