Thursday, April 17, 2014

Just the little things

My amazing little Max left this ephemeral art peace for me one day. It filled my heart with such joy. He is SO creative!

I have to say that life has been a little crazy lately! I can handle pregnancy sickness, and I can handle pregnancy pain and discomfort. I am having a hard time dealing with the pregnancy crazies. I have to focus on all of the beautiful wonderful in my life--and there is A LOT! Elder Uchtdorf's talk in general conference* (click here to watch it!) was such a great reminder to me right now. It has been the first General Conference change that I have implemented in my family. We had also JUST finished listening to Pollyanna on audio. If you have never read/or listened to the book--DO it!!! It was such an inspiring read. By the end I was bawling every time we were in the car. Inspired by these two events, we instituted "Happy Thought" at our house. Here is the story of happy thought.
My boys snuggling during family scripture study.
 On my mission I was serving in an area that had two towns that happened to be over a half an hour apart.  They were Thompson Falls MT and Plains MT. We lived in Thompson Falls but at the time were teaching more people in Plains. Due to our limited miles, we would often stay with the Branch President in Plains. I can not recall his name with accuracy--if anyone remembers PLEASE tell me! Even though I can not recall his name at this time, his impact on me was great.
The passion my oldest has for North American River Otters.
 One of the family traditions that they had was every night before they read their scriptures together, they would go around the room--youngest to oldest and state one thing that they were grateful for from that day. When we stayed with the family, we were included in this family tradition. We loved it.
Cooper told me one day that he wanted pizza for dinner and he wanted his own pepperoni pizza. We told him it was all for him, he was SO excited!
 When I came home from my mission, I felt very lost and alone. I had some great roommates that tolerated my craziness but I had a hard time letting them into my life. After a while I asked if they would do happy thought with me. I hoped that it would bring us closer together and allow me to be a little bit more vulnerable with them.
My Max and one of his best friends. I love that he was willing to put on her girl things to play outside in the snow with her.
  We had a set time and anyone who was in our apartment at that moment participated in Happy Thought and apartment prayer. It did bring us much closer together--along with the rest of our friends in the apartment complex.
Miss Amelia loves all things princesses. I love that our dear friend was willing to play the white stallion. 
I have to say that it helped me during the day to focus on the things that I could mention at apartment prayer that night. It helped me adjust to being home from my mission--if anything does help.
My sweet Stephanies. Here is one, I have another Stephanie (not pictured) they put up with me and my kids at least weekly while we teach our children together. Love these ladies!
  I heard a talk once from President Eyring about having a gratitude journal that his family kept. So the Monday after conference, I went to Hobby Lobby and got a huge (11x14) hardbound sketch pad. I wanted it hardbound because spiral bound tends to fall apart and I got a sketch pad because I wanted it to be free form with lots of colors and doodles.
Amelia on her trusty steed.
That night we had a family home evening about Elder Uchtdorf's talk and I read my favorite passage from one of my favorite books The Hiding Place by Corrie TenBoom.
          "'Thank You,' Betsie went on serenely, 'for the fleas and for--'
          The fleas! This was too much. 'Betsie, there's no way even God can make me grateful for a flea.'
          Give thanks in all circumstances,'' she quoted. 'It doesn't say 'in pleasant circumstances.' Fleas are part of this place where God has put us.'
         And so we stood between piers of bunks and gave thanks for fleas. But this time I was sure Betsie was wrong." (pg. 210) Later in the book they find out why God and blessed them with the fleas, but if you want to find out--read it!!
My super funny Coopy, always doing crazy things for a laugh! Love this kid :)

It is hard to be thankful for hard things, but keeping my mind on the things that I am thankful for is helping me to endure the pregnancy crazies. As an added bonus, my kids have fallen in LOVE with the tradition. Prayer and scriptures has been renamed (but not replaced--we do all three before bed now.) Happy Thought. Every night my kids remind me that it is time for Happy Thought.   


  1. Wonderful post tiffy. I love that part in cori ten boom. This post reminds me of some really great reads and after moving my mind has been mind swiped... And I needed some ideas to jump back in with family reading.

    1. Are you all done moving Em? I am sure it is such a crazy thing--never having done it since I got married, I can't even imagine!


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