Monday, March 29, 2010

The faith of a child

Warning: If you have a weak stomach, stop here.

Alexis has had 3 bloody noses in the last 2 days. I had been meaning to put some Vaseline inside her nose to help moisten the membranes up and hopefully help stop the bleeds. Today, when she was walking home from school (7 minutes away), she got another one.

I was outside working and it was still bleeding when she came to show me, but it was not bad. I figured it was almost over. I had her tip her head forward and after a few minutes I checked her and she was holding out a tissue with the biggest blood clot I had ever seen. It was as long as a pencil and even thicker. The blood was now dripping out of both nostrils at an alarming rate for a bloody nose. I had NEVER seen anything like it. She must have seen my concern because she started to shake and cry. I stood by her and helped to put pressure on the bridge of her nose (which I learned later from my SIL who is a EMT that is not the right way) and she saturated many more tissues. I even had her lay back even though I have heard that is wrong too. Another large clot came out and the blood was still flowing like a faucet. At this point we were probably 15 minutes into the nose bleed and I called Rob to come over so we could get her ready to take over to the ER if we couldn't get it under control. I am not one to panic easily, and something as simple as a nosebleed normally would never get me worked up, but I started to wonder if this was out of my hands. Rob had the thought to call his sister, Heather, and she told us to have her bend over without the pressure on her nose, which we did. As we switched out the tissue, there was a third large clot not much smaller than the other 2. Alexis said she felt like throwing up and was visibly distraught. Rob was as white as a ghost and had to walk away for a minute.

I was ready to load her into the car when she stopped shaking and crying and very matter of factly said, "Mom, I am going to pray." As I held the tissue to her nose, she closed her eyes and folded her arms. I am not sure what she said, but the most amazing calm came over both of us. When she was done, she very calmly sat down and said that she knew it would stop. I checked the bleeding again, and except for a few drips, I could tell that it was letting up. I took her into the house and had her sit down. She said she felt really tired, so I know she really lost a good amount of blood. We gave her some water and a protein drink and she ate an orange. She perked right back up and was on cloud nine.

I have dealt with many bloody noses in my life, but I have NEVER seen anything like that one. Today, I know that right there on that lawn, in the midst of panic and worry, God heard and answered a little girl's prayers. When Alexis stood there and folded her arms and closed her eyes in prayer, I felt like I was standing on holy ground. I just stood there and watched her and she seemed to glow. She was so calm. I know that if the veil could have been parted at that moment, I would have seen angels attending her. I just stood there in wondering awe at what had just tangibly and physically happened. I am not sure if I was more in awe of the healing that had just taken place or at the perfect faith of this very special spirit who was MY daughter. I am so grateful to have witnessed that miracle.

Tonight, I put some Vaseline in her nose. I was worried that doing so would cause it to bleed again. Nothing happened and I am hoping never to experience a nose bleed like that again.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Make Believe

Most of you know, I have been doing a lot of family history so we can take those names to the temple to have their saving ordinances performed. It has been an amazing experience and many blessings have come to our family from it. I have seen the Lord's hand in this work. But that will make an excellent post for later.

Alexis and Brooklyn have loved sitting with me at the computer searching for ancestors. We type the names into the computer and add them to the temple list. Sometimes I am working with hundreds of names at a time. After I get them printed at the temple, the kids have fun helping me sort through them and get them in alphabetical order and put them in their proper place in the files. They usually never tire of helping with it.

The other night I found some cards that had been accidentally duplicated so I tore them in half and asked Brooklyn to throw them in the garbage for me. Instead of throwing them away, she asked if she could keep them and use them for pretend money. When I said no for the obvious reason of the mess I would find later, she persisted. "Please! mom. I just want to keep them soooo bad!"

"No Brooklyn. They will just end up on the floor later and make a big mess."

"No I promise! I won't leave them there. If I do then you can tell me to throw them away and I will! Puuuuhleeeeeez!"


"But mom! maybe I want to pretend to do temple work with them."

Melt. My. Heart.

You wouldn't believe how quick I was able to find some other cards to add to her "temple work."

"Dad is strange!"

I came home the other day and saw what I thought was the cutest thing ever. Brooklyn was walking right beside Rob pushing the tiller. She LOVES being out there with him and working.

That same day Alexis said to me, "Dad is just strange! When I asked him the other day if I could till with him, he told me I was too little. Then today, I saw Brooklyn tilling with him!"

I agreed with her that that indeed was strange and encouraged her to ask again. Then I quickly made the strange man aware of his blunder. Today, I was thrilled to see this:

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The class bully

Today we were visiting Rob's parent's ward because they were speaking in Sacrament meeting. They did a great job. So proud of them.

We were deciding whether we were going to stay for the rest of the meetings. Brooklyn was acting a bit scared to go to an unfamiliar primary class even though she would be going with her cousin Amira. Amira was doing all she could to convince Brooklyn to go with her, but she still hung tight to my skirt and said she was too scared. Then Amira said, "Well you don't have to worry. I am the meanest girl in there. There isn't anyone meaner than me."

I guess it pays to be friends with the class bully!

Miss Amira herself.
She cracks me up every time she opens her mouth!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

One lash, 2 lash, 3 lash, 4!

Jordan has some amazing lashes. Long and full. To die for.

Today I watched as she pulled one from off her cheek and cursed it for falling out of its place. I laughed at her and told her I knew from experience another would grow right where the other had fallen out. She didn't believe me and thinks she will soon be lashless. This made me think of a couple of funny lash stories from my youth.

1. One day I found an eyelash on my cheek and my friend told me I could make a wish on that eyelash. This was great news to me because I could have used a few wishes back then. So I made a wish. And then I kept a sharp eye out for any stray lashes. When I did find one, I immediately made a wish. Then the thought occurred to me, why wait for one to fall out, when I could just give them a little tug and help them along a little? So I reached up to pull one out, but there was not just one, there was a whole bunch. Wow how lucky was I? I made a bundle of wishes. This method of manually providing the lash for the wish proved much more lucrative than just waiting around... time. and. time. again. I grew out of that a long time ago, and thank goodness, as age is not providing them quite as abundantly as before.

2. One day in 5th grade I was bending down in my seat to grab an assignment from the storage bin under my chair, when what should I see, but a pair of scissors. Please don't ask what got into my brain at that very moment. To this day I could not tell you. But I took that pair of scissors and chopped off every eyelash in between eyelash 1 on the right side and eyelash 1,1825,325 on the the left with one big chop. There they all were in my hand! It was at THAT very moment that common sense slapped me in the face and I wondered HOW in the world I was going to sit up and face the class. The teacher had called us all up to the front of the class with our assignments and I could NOT bring my self to sit up and go up there. And there I sat, for who knows how long, bent over in my chair pretending to find that darn assignment. Finally, when I could not drag it out any longer, I asked to be excused to go to the bathroom. I raced out of the class and into the bathroom dreading the sight of the damage. Man, was I in trouble. I walked around with my head down for the rest of the day and if I remember right, my teacher even asked if I was feeling ill. Just a little bit.

Over the course of the regrowth, not ONE person said anything about it until MANY weeks later when I was riding somewhere with my mom and she looked over at me and asked incredulously, "Did you cut your eyelashes?!?!?!?" I think I was so caught off guard that she could even tell at this point, that I might have lied and said, "No! Why would I do something dumb like that?"

Yes folks, I still have eyelashes, and for all the wishes I ever made, the very best one that came true is being a mom to amazing kids who love me despite my common-senseless days.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Caution: Objects in the glasses may appear larger than they are not

What an experience. To have everything you have ever believed to be right, seem wrong. When my eye doc, i.e. brother told me I could benefit from having more than 2 eyes, I was not too happy, but the promise that my 8+ hours in front of the computer each day would seem less grueling, I relented.

When I first tried the glasses on, I had to call the doc himself to make sure they made them right, because the world as I had known it, was no more. EVERYTHING was odd shaped and much bigger.

Alexis' homework page looked like it had been trimmed by a 1st grader. My computer screen looked like it had been run over. Everything that had once been square or rectangle was now trapezoid or screwywampus.

As I made dinner, there were multiple times that I reached to grab the pan that was NOT falling off the stove. When I opened the kitchen drawer, I quickly saved it from NOT falling on the floor.

When I drove the car, I felt like I was in a big king cab truck and when I drove past a pot hole, I held on for dear life as it seemed it would swallow me whole. When I drove under some tree branches, I ducked.

When I walked outside, I felt like I was on stilts, but the ground was still so close to me.

What was my most shocking discovery? That I miss plenty of eyebrows when I pluck.

What is my favorite part? Rob likes them. He really likes them.

All in all, it has been a real trip. Anyone observing me might have wondered if I was under the influence. It sure felt like it. I don't think I could have had more fun if I had joined one of those kind of parties (not that I would know what those kind of parties feel like, but I could imagine).

Thank goodness it is supposed to be short lived. I don't think I could take it anymore. Today, things are starting to seem normal again, but there are still things that trick me.

Today, I tried to look at my computer without my glasses and everything was blurry. I had to squint real hard to see what was there. Now I know what Doc was talking about when he said my brain was working overtime to see.

Thanks Paul!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Wanna play?

Despite having an abundance of friends, Brooklyn was SOL today when trying to rope in a playmate. It did not help that every last sibling struck gold and was in their own little world with their very own friend. This only added salt to the wound.

There was weeping, there was wailing, there was gnashing of teeth.

What ever is a mom to do?

Not sure, but I'll tell you what NOT to do. Don't offer to be the friend she didn't have. Don't offer to play dolls with her, or doggies with her.
Don't tell her that you will be the momma dog and that your name will be Baxter and she can be the baby dog.
She will only howl louder and tell you all the reasons why that. won't. work!
including that you are too old and may get hurt.

You won't want to hear that.

You may, however, get lucky if you invite her on a mommy, daughter date to get the weekly groceries.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Exceeded my expectations

I cannot even begin to describe the wonderful feelings that I had in the temple tonight. Aside from my wedding day, this was undeniably the best experience in the temple of my life. My husband was there, two of my children were there and without a doubt a host of others who came before us were there. We were there to do something for them that they could no longer do for themselves.

Back in October when Rob's parents gave us permission to move forward with the temple work for their parents, siblings and family, we knew it was going to be a special experience. And it has been. I have lost count of the names that have been submitted. Well over 500+. I have been taking my kids to do baptisms and our ward has stepped in to help with a lot of it as well. But I have been holding onto some names that are near and dear to us. There were 3 of Rob's grandparents and their parents and their parents, some aunts and uncles, etc. We set a date and asked the kids what temple they wanted to go to, suggesting many close to us that they had never been to, but they insisted the Manti Temple, the same one they go to with the youth in our ward. So I made the appointment on Tuesday for tonight. As with any other time something great is set to happen, the adversary tried his hardest to stop it. There were a few fleeting moments today when I was about to throw my hands in the air and declare surrender. But thank goodness I didn't, for once I set my mind to it and we were on our way, it proved to be an unforgettable night.

When we walked into the babtistry, there was another ward on their way out. And then there was just us. It was so quiet and peaceful. The temple workers we so kind and helpful. It was all about us. They kept asking us how we wanted to do each thing, insisting that they were there to serve us. Rob was so nervous because never in his whole life had he been to do baptisms for the dead and he was expected to do them all. And he did a wonderful job. I kept watching him as he did each name. He kept choking up and often had to compose himself as he spoke each name. I watched Jordan and I watched Brandon. How lucky they each were to stand in the place of these fine people, these people who I knew were there. And then I wondered, do these people know how lucky they are that Jordan and Brandon have kept themselves worthy to stand in their place and do this work for them. And I knew that they did know. These wonderful family members will forever reverence their names. They will forever be their guardian angels.

As we walked away from the temple tonight, we knew that we had just experienced a night never to forget. We knew that this temple and this night would forever hold a special place in our hearts.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Practice makes perfect.

I used to make a pretty mean chocolate chip cookie. The kids loved them and Rob loved them. I loved that they loved them. Nothing is better than to please your family with fine food. When we had a hankering for something good, I would whip up a batch.

And then I got lazy.
Or I had to work too much and it got cut from my list of priorities.
The kids would ask
and Rob would ask
and I would say "not right now."
Then a marvelous thing started to happen. Jordan got desperate and she opened the cookbook and started cooking. She made cookies, and not just chocolate chip cookies either. She made brownies and cake and just about anything else we had ingredients for. She got really good at it and I sat back and relaxed.
I even let her enjoy all the compliments, for I knew the fulfillment that comes with satisfied customers.

Well it had been awhile and I was missing the praise and adoration that came with a batch of cookies the old feelings of "mommy in the kitchen whipping up a batch of cookies for the fam" started to kick in.
Yesterday, as I prepared my cooking area, the kid's surprise and excitement spurred me on. I pulled out my old recipe for my cookies and realized I did not have shortening.
I couldn't even remember the last time I had shortening. No wonder we didn't see these cookies being produced. Jordan worked with what she had.

Nevertheless, I needed to bake. Butter, as tricky as it is, would have to do.
Or not.
I pulled batch after batch of cookies from the oven that Flat Stanley would be proud of. While the family devoured them, I could not shake off my disappointment.
The admiration was absent.
The pity was there.
I had failed.
I should leave cooking to the teenager.

A spark of hope came and was dashed just as quickly with this one comment.

Brandon: Mom, you should make cookies more often. You used to make them so good. Now you haven't made them in so long you have forgotten how.

He was so brutally, though innocently honest.

I am going to the store today to get shortening.