Monday, May 21, 2018

Happy New Year 2016

So I'm doing the One Word Challenge this year again instead of New Year's Resolutions for the fourth time.  I really like it.  It is uplifting and consciousness-raising to have one uplifting and hopeful thing to focus on every day of the new year. 

 The first year I used the word "Believe" to motivate me.  The second year my word was "Remember."  Oh, that was a good one.  For 2015 it was "Seek".  I did a lot of seeking in 2015.  I found some answers I didn't expect to find and am really determined to follow it through.  I'll add the word to my blog side bar and the New Year's thoughts about it via a link to remind myself when I need extra motivation.  It works.  My word for 2016 is "Determination".

To be determined is to never give up.  To keep trying in the face of discouragement, disappointment or disillusionment.  It is to never, never, stop trying to achieve what you have set out to do.  

To be determined is to never give up.  To believe in yourself, your righteous desires and above all your God.  

England ~Life With The Kids on Sabbatical

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Mothers And Daughters~

This is from 2009.  I ran across it while I was looking for something to write for my own deceased mom's 99th birthday celebration today.  This just made me tear up to think that my sweet Laura wrote this for me.  As I told her, I'm not sure I am all these things but the fact that you see me this way was very tender to me then and still is nine years later.  In this world where we are so easily misunderstood or our efforts go completely noticed,  it was fun to see how she touched upon some of my target things I wanted to teach our kids.  "Love is paying attention" is one of my favorite quotes.  Laura is very good at paying attention.  I love my girl!  I need to write a list like this about here and all the kids.  They are all so unique and special to my heart.  There could be no better gift one can give that to notice and appreciate another person in a way like this.

My Birthday 2009 on July 2nd...

I had such a fabulous birthday today. Everyone has been so sweet and kind and wonderful to me all day long. It has been such a contrast to last year when I felt sick and tired and worried to death about baby Hazel, as we spent a month in the hospital with our littlest sweetheart. Things are looking so much better this year which is just a testament that in the cycles of life we all have our ups and our downs.

Today was just superb for me. Thank you all for the lovely flowers, gifts and well-wishing. Thanks for all the phone calls and Facebook messages! Lee, thank you for the great lunch out on Wednesday! And thanks to Jim for an elegant and delicious dinner out at Scott's tonight. It was above and beyond!

Just when I thought it couldn't get any better I read this on our daughter, Laura's, blog tonight. I barely recognize this woman she is talking about but it was so sweet of her and I want to keep this on my blog as part of my journal.

I hope you don't think I am being self-aggrandizing by publishing this, I just want to keep it in a safe place and close to my heart. Sometimes when people see you in ways you do not see yourself, it helps you to live up to their expectations and stretch and grow. So for those of you who live near, if you see me acting outside of this beautiful box~slap me upside the head, will ya?

Anyway, she definitely sees her mother through rose-colored glasses but this is what she wrote....

This is my Mom and today is her Birthday!

There are a million things I love about my Mom. Here are just a few in honor of her 62nd Birthday!

1. She is the most generous person I know. She would (and has on several occasions) given the shirt off her back to someone in need.

2. She loves her family and has dedicated her life to each of us.

3. She is witty and though I tend to be too serious most of the time- I do appreciate her humor!

4. My Mom is incredibly creative.

5. She has a eye for color and patterns and can decorate ANYTHING and make it look good.

6. She is totally hip. She always knows what is "IN" and what is not.

7. My Mom has the best jewelry collection I have ever seen.- rivaled only by HER mother's collection!

8. She always looks like a million bucks- cute hair, flattering clothes, fun jewelry. She is a fashion icon.

9. She is sensitive to others feelings.

10. She is a movie lover and on a moment's notice can give me a list of at least ten movies I MUST see!

11. My Mom is a professional shopper- really! She knows where to find all the good deals.

12. My Mom can make a thrift store flower arrangement look like it came from Nieman Marcus.

13. My Mom "gets" me. She can read me like a book- actually it is a little scary.

14. Being with my Mom is like being with my best friend.

15. My Mom does the laundry when she comes to visit!

16. My Mom really loves me and that is amazing to me. She has seen me struggle through the toughest times in life and she likes me just the same. Her love is unconditional and is as close to the love of God as I have ever experienced.

17. She is my biggest fan. Even when I am a total dork and do everything wrong- she thinks I am great. Every person needs a Mom like that.

18. She is a great cheerleader and gives great pep talks on just about everything.

19. My mom has taught me what it means to serve others. I watched care for her mom for 13 years and I will never forget all of the time and energy and love she gave her.

20. My Mom knows what she likes. I love that!

21. My Mom is an inspiring teacher.

22. My Mom is a great cook.

23. My Mom loves potted flowers in her yard but can't keep them alive. When they die- she replaces them with new flowers. I love that because I do the same thing.24. My Mom is a great reader. I can still remember her reading to us when we were little and thinking, "I hope I can read like that someday."

25. She knows how to relax and enjoy life.

26. She knows how to make holidays and birthdays special.

27. She is the best gift giver I know. Honestly, I don't think I have ever gotten a gift from her I didn't love!

28. My Mom has a knack for entertaining. Her parties are always classy, organized, comfortable.

29. Mom (and Dad) have the best backyard BBQ's in the world. Not only because they have an awesome backyard but because they "get" how to make people feel comfortable and welcomed.

30. She loves my babies and that means the world to me.

31. She loves to snuggle- I do too.

32. She is the best shopping and lunching partner. I can still remember our Nordstrom shopping days when I was a teenager- my how time flies!

33. My Mom loves God and truly strives to do what is right.

34. My Mom taught me to decorate- a skill that has brought so much joy to my life.

35. She gave me the piano her dad gave her. I love having piano music in my home- it has blessed my life in a thousand ways.

36. She doesn't give up on people or dreams or goals.

37. She is a great travel partner- together we have been to all kinds of wonderful places. My favorite trip with Mom... that is hard to say. I loved Europe and Italy but I think those summer ED week trips will always be my favorite.

38. My Mom is a blogging maniac. She has ten blogs and keeps up with all of them. Hello, I can hardly keep up with one! Her blogs has been a great blessing to me as we live too far away and it has helped us all stay connected.

39. She has a eye for beauty. She loves trees, flowers, mountains, the sea. I love those things too.

40. She has mastered the art of "enjoying the journey". I hope I can be like that someday.

41. My mom loves music and theater and art and dancing. She taught me to love and appreciate those things too.

42. My Mom is a extraordinary speller. She can spell ANYTHING. Unfortunately for me- I didn't get that gene.

43. My Mom loves my husband like her own child. Her ability to love and accept him has blessed our lives.

44. My Mom is patient. When things don't go her way... she waits with patience for things to get better.

45. She has beautiful hands- always perfectly manicured just like her mom. I love that.

46. She has always made my family feel welcome in her home even when we come too often and stay too long.

47. She is a great writer. It is so fun to read her blogs because she really has a talent for expressing thoughts and feelings in words.

48. She kept a journal all though our growing up years. I admire the time and effort she spent doing that and look forward to reading it in full someday.

49. My Mom has a gift for languages. She can speak and understand other languages with ease. Her talent has come in handy a time or two.

50. My Mom has visited me every place I have ever lived in (and that is a lot- eleven cities and counting) Her visits are always a delight.

51. She understands my son's food allergies and always makes an effort to make her house a safe place for him to be.

52. She makes great Mexican food- fajitas, tacos, enchiladas, chili rellenos... yum!
53. She makes the BEST potato salad EVER.

54. She takes beautiful pictures- photography is definitely one of her talents.
55. When my Mom joined the Church she did it with all her heart. She embraced it fully and has taught me to do the same.

56. My Mom has the best blue hair brush on the planet. This may not seem like a virtue to some BUT it must be because I have tried to buy my own just like hers many times and it is just never the same. There is something special about Mom that makes her blue brush one of a kind! Hee- Hee

57. She makes 62 look good!

58. She loves being a grandma and makes me want to be one too.

59. She remembers things about my kids that I have forgotten. The funny things that say and do.

60. I love talking to my Mom on the phone.

61. My Mom has given me or helped me pick out every cool thing in my house.

62. My Mom is a wicked good basketball player. Seriously, she can out shoot the entire family!

63. When I think of my Mom- I think of love and happiness comfort and safety. When I think of Mom I always feel good inside.

64. She is Ross's actual birthday twin today- yeah for time zone changes!

Happy Birthday Mom. We love you and wish you all the happiness in the world!"