Monday, May 28, 2012

Race's Baptism

Race memorizes. If you've ever been to our place, there's probably a mii made of you on our wii. And on the mii information will be your birthday. And Race more than likely has it memorized.

 He also loves calendars. He's known the names of the months since he was able to talk, and has always had a good sense of time; whether its hours, days, weeks, etc.  He needs the month's information filled out from the first day of every month: birthdays, holidays, special events, you name it.  He knows you get baptized when you're eight as well as get to be in cub scouts. He knows you get to pass the sacrament when you're 12, and drive for real when you're 16. He knows you get to go to college when you're 18, and on a mission when you're 19.

So, because of this obsessiveness with dates, you can imagine how long he's been looking forward to his own baptism. Ever since he's been in Primary.

And the day was so special. So perfect. It was everything he hoped for and more.

A few weeks after his baptism, he was asked to talk about it in Primary. This is the talk he wrote (yes, I helped, but only a little):

I was baptized on April 7th, 2012 in the Camp Verde Baptismal Font.
It was the day before Easter. It was a special day because it was the day I became a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
I was eight years old, and my Daddy baptized me. The water was a little cold, but it was fun getting dunked under the water. When the water was all around me, it washed away my sins.
I also received the Gift of the Holy Ghost. This means I have the Holy Ghost with me to help me make good choices.
My Papa and Auntie Adriane gave special talks to teach me more about Baptism and the Holy Ghost.
I know that being baptized is what Jesus wants us to do. And I’m very happy that I am a member of Jesus’ church.

It truly was the most amazing day and the spirit was so strong. Thank you to all who traveled to share it with us.

Race sometimes has a hard time with church. The sitting requires much from him (more than the average 8 year old), and talking about abstract things like faith and the Holy Ghost is hard for him. But, his spirit is amazing and contagious. Though he has a hard time understanding abstract things, the Holy Ghost radiates through him. Race doesn't lie. He is the most honest little boy. Things are very black and white to him, and he has a hard time when he sees others breaking rules. He truly is a special, perfect spirit, not only in my eyes.

If only we could all see the world in black and white, with no shades of gray.

Memorizing the Articles of Faith have been helpful to Race. He understands the Gospel when he memorizes. He understands the Gospel when we study scripture stories. Taking something solid, something concrete, and using it to teach abstract ideas. It reminds me of how the Savior taught in parables. He took concrete, familiar ideas and applied them to abstract thinking so the people could understand.

I'm so grateful for the Gospel. For the hope it gives me in my life daily.

And Race, I'm so grateful for your decision and excitement to be baptized. To follow our Savior's example.

Race is Eight

I look at him and can't believe he's eight.

The other night the boys and I got home late from somewhere and they had all fallen asleep in the car:

I unbuckled Witt and carried him in to his bed.
I unbuckled Lane and carried him to his bed.
I unbuckled Race and tried to pick him up.
Dead weight, I couldn't move him.
He's a hard sleeper.
I tried to pick him up again.
It wasn't happening.
"Race, come on. We're home...I need you to walk to bed."
"I'm too tired."
"Come on, I'll hold your hand."

I still look at him and can't believe he's eight.

He got snow for his birthday:

And made his own cake for Family Home Evening:

Some of Race's Favorites:
the color blue
biscuits and bacon gravy
Tae Kwon Do
everything Mario
Star Wars
Magic Tree House books
water, he's a little fish
Harry Potter
riding his bike

I can't believe he's eight.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Party at Freedom Station

We had an early birthday party for Race over Spring Break. He chose Freedom Station in Prescott Valley and I thought it was totally worth the money.  We went, we partied, we came home and rested... end of story. :)

Race and his buddies: Brodie, Hannah, Paul, Jadon and Nathaniel. Witten was too busy in the monkey maze the ENTIRE party. So, he's not pictured in any birthday pictures. Don't know how that happened...

The Laser room. I was actually very surprised Race would go in. He did, and he loved it.  I'm starting to see a consistency in the noise that bothers Race. And it's not with machines or technology. It's people. And the noise and movements that go along with people.

The Monkey Maze.  I had to climb up in the darn thing to check on kids...definitely not built for adults... I figured two things out: I have no idea why it's called the Soft Play. And there is no way I'm taking my shoes off, no matter what the rules say...

The Birthday Boy! He's 8!!

Every year the boys challenge me in my cake making skills. And I refuse to use fondant because nobody will eat the stuff (nasty), so I've been having to get creative and watch a lot of You-Tube videos. Bragging moment... I didn't even have a star pan. I cut the stars out of squares.

It was such a fun day. We are so grateful for the friends who came and spent the day with us.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

11 Years...wait, let me count... yep, 11 years.

In March, John and I celebrated our 11 year anniversary. Here's the pathetic thing... I keep forgetting how long we've been married. People ask... and I have to stop and count. I now understand why my mother used to forget how old she was. Cuz now, I'm doing the same thing. I keep telling people I'm 30, and Race keeps correcting me: You're 31, Mom.

So, ya. Here's to 11 years with my best friend, and some of my favorite pictures along the way:

March 9, 2001 at the Mesa Arizona Temple





March 9th, 2012

I've learned so much in the 11 years together. We did a lot of growing up.  And I want my boys to know that marriage requires sacrifice and service.  In today's world, this is so important to understand, because we live in a selfish world. Marriage is hard work, but the blessings are abundant.  And through the Temple, we understand that families can be together forever. And because of the Temple, we want to work hard at our marriage. Because we understand that true happiness comes through sacrifice and service.

Mesa Arizona Temple

I love you John. Here's to many, many more years. So many I'll forever lose count...

Monday, May 14, 2012

Spring Break/ Phoenix Zoo

We kept busy over Spring Break. One of our stops was to the Phoenix Zoo with Kissy and the cousins. We always have a blast with the cousins.

If you ever want to hang out with the funniest dynamic duo, these are your guys. Hilarious boys...

It was Lane's first trip to the Phoenix Zoo, and he's been talking about it ever since. On our way out of the park he said to me, "That was so fun Mama, and the monkey didn't even throw poop on me!"  ....??

So, Lil' Man, I'm so glad you loved your first trip to the big zoo, and I'm so glad the monkeys didn't throw poop on you...

1st Tournament

We've been busy with Tae Kwon Do. The boys graduated to their next belt: Witt is now a Little Dragon Orange Belt and Race is a a Little Dragon Black Belt!

At the end of February the boys participated in their first Tae Kwon Do Tournament. They did so well! Race got 2rd in his awesome White Belt Form and 3rd in his age group for sparing.

Witt... he won his age group for sparing. Go figure, he's quite the little pistol. If you ask him how he won, he'll tell you, "It was because of my lucky mohawk"

Should I be worried???

Catching Up Now that Classes are Over!

Oh my fabulous blog, how I've missed you!  Now that my writing classes are done, I can focus more on what I love best... writing about my family.

Here we are back in early march flying kites.  Flying kites is something the boys love to do, so we do it A LOT!  We do it so much, they're all pretty much expert kite fliers. Check them out:

Look at Lil' Lane fly the butterfly all by himself!

These two got one so high you can barely see the kite in the picture:

 Can you see it?

We take kite flying very serious at our place...

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

I am the Boxer

This month has been a fight, a battle.  And I'm feeling banged up, spinning out of control, in need of rest and recovery. In need of a cave to hide in with a stack of light hearted novels to escape into...

But hiding doesn't solve anything.

The only solution is to go out and face the world head on; with as much strength and grace possible. Then go home at night to bandage up the wounds and pray for more strength the next day.

And the strength always seems to come when it's absolutely necessary. Hope always returns when I feel myself sinking or getting overwhelmed with the big decisions I have to make. Whether its through the sweet words of my boys, a friend, the scriptures, or a song. And Monday it came through a song; good ol' Simon and Garfunkel never fail me. I was driving when their song, The Boxer, came on. A song I memorized as a kid. And the last verse gets me every time:

In the clearing stands a boxer
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of ev'ry glove that layed him down
Or cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame
"I am leaving, I am leaving"
But the fighter still remains

 How easy it is to throw in the towel and quit when the fight gets too hard.  Wouldn't it be nice to just stay in bed and excape in those novels day after day and avoid the fight?  Avoid the decisions that have to be made?

It seems the Lord is constantly testing me to what extent I will fight for my kid. And I always come away reminded, "Whatever it takes."

So this month, I am the Boxer.