Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sunday's Lessons

I am thankful for plums

When I go to church, a lot of times I hear things that I already know, but for some reason a certain principle or lesson will really stick out and feel new and important.

Last Sunday that happened, and I've been thinking about it all week. I've wanted to share my insights, but I'm strangely weirded out about sharing spiritual things on my blog. I just hate to be sappy. But I keep feeling like it's a-time to write it down so here goes.

There is a story about one of the Mormon pioneers who traveled across the country to Utah with the Martin Harris Handcart company. This particular group left late in the season and got stuck in the ice and snow and many of the members of the company died. Years later a group of Mormons were discussing the poor judgement of church leaders in letting the group leave so late in the year.

At some point an old man spoke up and said he had been an actual member of the very company they were criticizing. He said a lot of stuff (I'm not getting into it because I don't want to cry) but ended by saying that the sacrifices and hardships he suffered on that trek were the price he paid to know Jesus Christ and it was worth it.

Then in Sunday school our lovely teacher, Vicki, pointed out a pattern of sacrifice that goes like this: sacrifice leads to faith, faith leads to a testimony of Christ, that testimony gives us the power to endure all things, and enduring until the end brings us eternal life.

Does that make a light bulb go off in anyone else's head? Although I could have explained all of this before Sunday, on this Sunday it felt different. I feel like any hardship or sacrifice I have been through, is infinitely worth it, if it brings me closer to my Savior. My trials are tiny, but I am grateful for any sorrow that has brought me to my knees and made me recognize God's hand in my life.

And that's all I'm saying because I can tell I am on the very verge of sapaliciousness but I did want to thank Dayna and Vicki for their insights. They are good, righteous women and I am so happy to know them.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The laziness is OVER. After two days of work my house is top to bottom clean, which almost never happens-the girls' rooms, bathrooms, behind the couch, CLEAN! Totally clean. I mean, if you don't look in my desk drawers or linen closets, which you totally won't because I'm not even letting you in there, CLEAN.

So come on over and walk around, enjoy the calm. It should last, oh, maybe overnight and until I'd say, 9 a.m. tomorrow.

Look, Riley is enjoying it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Slothful Summer

We saw these guys in Santa Barbara; they are my inspiration.

My slothful week continues fairly successfully. Exhibit Tuesday:

Woke up, put on sweats and went to track, got out of car, decided it was too cold to walk/run, returned home and went back to bed.

Got up to take Marc to Bart (like the Metro), returned home and went back to bed.

Somewhere in there Ellie got in bed with me so when I woke up the third time we were able to enjoy her hooked on phonics lesson in, you guessed it, bed.

Finally got up in time to drive into Berkeley and be taken out to lunch by the parents. Thanks guys!

Drove home to pick up the kids' swim suits and then scooted over to Dana's to watch the kids swim while we lounged and chatted. Okay, I lounged...Dana managed to throw Cabbo (her doggie) in the pool, find goggles, make cookies, and give a visiting teaching lesson while I sat there.

For dinner I am exerting all my strength and warming up pizza. Marc will be pleasantly surprised since last night I said I couldn't make dinner and had to be taken out. Progress!

In a minute I'll have to take Jonathan to Lacrosse but my plan is to wait in the car with my (embarrassingly juvenile) book, "Dragon Champion."

At various times today I have considered and rejected as too taxing: laundry, grocery shopping, making my bed, vacuuming, washing the dog, and organizing my desk. Perhaps tomorrow? Perhaps.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Random Monday Thoughts

Okay, I know, you're wondering if I ever have any thoughts that aren't random. Just because I can't think about one thing for more than five minutes doesn't mean I don't do anything deliberate. I do. I plan (sort of), I just...forget...the plan...later.

Anyway, just 5 thoughts, that's all I'm talking about.

1. Just dropped Maddie and Katie off for girls' camp. I really hope they have fun.

2. I saw a large lady at the beach in Santa Barbara wearing a skirt with a petticoat, a leather vest, and a cowboy hat with a coon's tail hanging from the back. She was walking two Irish Wolfhounds. Wow, I have been dying to get that off my chest! I think she was Hagrid's sister.

3. I also saw a man on the sidewalk wearing skin tight gold pants, his hair was a white blond mullet and he was singing. Not making this up.

4. Am loving the "Hooked on Phonics" reading program for Ellie. Thanks Aunt Ree.

5. Lastly, how does anyone get anything done in the summer? I feel SO lazy. I'm thinking of renting "24" from blockbuster.

6. Well I have to add one more because now that I told you about gold pants man and coon tail lady I have to tell you about the group of 5 black surfer girls all suited up in wetsuits and talking smack that I passed at the beach in L.A. That was funny.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Coldplay!

Honest to goodness my concert going experiences have been very limited and fairly nerdy (Crystal Gail, The Righteous Brothers, Clay Aiken) but last night may have made up for all that!

I am still high today from seeing Coldplay last night! It was such a great concert and I would like to nominate Marc for Father of the Year for having the downright brilliant idea to take Maddie and her friends as her 16th birthday present! Who would have thought we could enjoy her gift so much?

Okay, here are the pictures. We were on the lawn but the band actually came out onto a small stage built on the lawn and played a few songs resulting in some rockin' close ups. Did I say this was a great concert? Alright, I'm still breathing.
All the girls while the sun was still up.

video
Singing along was SUPER fun.
video

There was a moment when the band was playing, the paper butterflies were swirling around us, and Marc's arms were wrapped around me so tightly. As I leaned back into him and tried to take it all in...the music, the stars, how much I love him, how proud I am of our daughter...I felt so blessed and lucky. And as Katie said, "this band is so cool!"

Monday, July 13, 2009

Paying for Vacation

We got home yesterday from our wonderful vacation and today it is time to pay for it.

Right before we left we had the incident with the skunk, then my washer flooded the laundry room twice, so I pretty much wiped up all the water with dirty towels and then fled for Santa Barbara.

It was beautiful, the ocean, the flowers... I didn't spend a second thinking about what might be percolating in my laundry room. However, this morning as I unpack and shake sand out of all and sundry I am faced with the fact that damp skunk towels do not just go away (If I only had one wish...).

Still, I am ah, "excited" isn't really the right word, let's go with motivated. Yes, I am motivated to clean out the laundry room and see if I can see the floor once more. Maybe I'll even work my way down the hall and tackle the (also damp) pile of clothes my daughters discarded into the furnace room.

Aaaaand we're back!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Good Children. Delicious!

You want to know what I love?
The smell of my children after they have been basted with sunscreen, marinated in the ocean, and spent the day toasting in the sun!
Delicious to my taste!

Monday, July 6, 2009

A Birthday Princess


Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Ellie's 7th Birthday
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I can't believe I haven't posted pictures from Ellie's birthday! Someone slap my hand.

4th of July in Santa Barbara

Yahoo! We are in Santa Barbara for a fine week of family vacation and I am ready to post pictures for your viewing enjoyment. I just feel bad about all of the important events I haven't posted about lately, so before I go on I will upload one picture from each event and then (hopefully) do each one justice with its' own post when I get home.

1. Jonathan puts his poker face to work at the 4th grade "Gold Rush Day."2. Katie is lovely at her 8th grade graduation.3. Maddie opening her new MacBook for her 16th birthday.4. Grandma Diana visits from San Diego.5. Gotta share how lovely the fruits growing in the front mini-orchard are. We have plums, apricots and apple.

And finally, here are some of our 216 Fourth of July photos. Thank goodness I finally learned how to make a collage. We are staying at a great beach house with our new(ish) friends, the Vanhoven family.

We went to watch the fireworks show down by the beach and Marc got us the PERFECT table to eat dinner and take in the show. It was so good!

You can clickity click on this collage to get a better look at the photos.

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