Tuesday, January 31, 2012

One More Day

When buffeted and beaten by life's storms,

When by the bitter cares of life oppressed,

I want no surer haven than your arms,

I want no sweeter heaven than your breast.

When over my life's way there falls the blight

Of sunless days, and nights of starless skies;

Enough for me, the calm and steadfast light

That softly shines within your loving eyes.

The world, for me, and all the world can hold

Is circled by your arms; for me there lies,

Within the lights and shadows of your eyes,

The only beauty that is never old.

James Weldon Johnson

In 23 hours Kenny will be back with us again. I am SO excited to have him home. Well, not home, because we won't have a "home" for a while starting tomorrow. But to be back with his family, all together like we're supposed to be. Hallelujah! We made it through January!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Weekend

Friday: We had Joy School over at our house again. I thought we did it for the last time a few weeks ago, but I ended up taking another turn. We cancelled it on Wednesday since the kids and I all had colds. But Friday we extended it a little while and had a mini birthday party for Ty. It worked out nicely to not have to plan much extra, the kids would already be there. He didn't want a birthday cake but instead requested donuts and chocolate milk. So after the preschool section we cleaned up and pulled out the balloons and donuts. Here he is blowing out 5 (!!!) candles in his chocolate donut.

(Don't mind our bare walls. Kenny removed all the wall-hangings and spackled the holes in the wall when he was here last week.)

This is Tyler with his friend William O'Neil. They are great buddies.

I meant to get a good group shot of everyone in joy school but one girl wasn't there that day and the other had left. So these are the boys: Nate Tusberg, William and Grant O'Neil on either side of Ty.

A moving guy also came that day to evaluate how much stuff we have. Have I mentioned how grateful I am that the company is moving us?! Holy cow. Packing is by far the worst part so to have that off my shoulders is a HUGE relief.

That night everything was fine and normal, the kids had a bath and went to bed without a problem. Then at 11, I was in my bed reading, about to go to sleep and Brynlee woke up crying. I went in there and she said "I'm all wet". I got closer to her and reached out to touch her and could smell the vomit, and felt it all over her clothes, bed, and in her hair. I got her changed and cleaned up and brought into bed with me. Not too many minutes passed and she did it again all over my bed this time. Throw-up is disgusting. So I changed my sheets too and started a load of laundry, got Bryn changed again and prayed that was the end of it. But it wasn't. The next time we didn't quite make it to the toilet for the first round so it was all over my bathroom floor and down the side of the toilet. Thankfully no more laundry this time. I finally got smarter and brought a bowl into bed with us. She threw up several more times. It was so painful and heartbreaking to watch her go through that. I started to feel upset and frustrated that Kenny wasn't home. Then I had a thought hit me: "Stop feeling sorry for yourself. What are you grateful for in this situation?" And it changed everything.

I realized I was very grateful for washers and dryers. I always think of the pioneers and realize how much worse it could be. I had a bishop when I was younger, Bishop Livingstone, and I remember one time he said that the Lord must have created sloths just to have something to compare humans to. Ya know how in the scriptures it's always like "you are an unwise and slothful servant" or something? Well I feel the same way about pioneers. Maybe the Lord just had them go through all the crap that they did so that for the rest of time we could compare our lives to theirs and feel better about our situations haha. I know that sounds terrible, and I say that sort of tongue-in-cheek. The point is that I'm not going to be able to handle any hardships if I just have a "woe is me" attitude. "Forget yourself and go to work", right?.

Well she must have just had something bad to eat, I don't really know what was up that night. But it ended somewhere between 1:30 and 2 a.m. and she's been fine since. I kept waking up to check on her, but she was done, and nobody else in the house got sick. When Madi woke up the next morning at 6:30 I was less than thrilled to get up with her. Then I had a dramatic trip to Wal-mart that morning where it was a snow storm and I needed my thyroid medicine and a few other essentials but I forgot my wallet and they wouldn't let me write a check without the proper ID so we came home empty-handed, etc. etc. Stupid things I tell you. But I had a nap with the girls when we got home and that always makes life seem better :). And we eventually made it back to the store in better spirits and took care of what we needed to.

Today was our last Sunday in this ward. I got to teach Young Womens again and I'm always glad to have that over with. I love preparing talks and lessons, but I really really don't like teaching. Madi was quite a distraction for the girls during the lesson, but oh well. I know they can't help it--she's just cute. We went to the Palmers for dinner tonight, again. Really going to miss that family. Well this is getting awfully long, and it's late. Good night.

Friday, January 27, 2012

It's Real

The fact that we are moving a week from today has all of the sudden hit me the last couple days and it's very real and very nerve-wracking. Before nothing was finalized and it was hard to really wrap my head around it or plan on anything because nothing was set in stone. But as of Wednesday, all the papers are signed, our flights are scheduled, we've signed a 2 month contract on some temporary, furnished housing, and the movers are all set to come next Wed., Thurs., and Fri. Pretty crazy if you ask me. I guess this is really happening. I am making lists about everything and getting all anxious and stressing out about every little detail, because that's what I do. I just go over and over things in my mind, even if I don't have any control over how it will turn out. But time will pass and it will all work out, I'm sure.

We've been trying to keep ourselves busy. We've had fun going to the mall and playing on the play place. I also bought myself 2 pairs of boots on sale. How convenient that all the winter stuff is going on sale here, and we're going to need it for pretty much year-round :). Yesterday we attempted to go bowling with Natalie and her kids, but about halfway into it we couldn't get the kids to bowl anymore. They found all the arcade games and it was over. So we paid for half a game of bowling which is stupid. I would have finished off the game for them because I love bowling, but I didn't want to buy myself shoes and the guy was such a stickler. I threw one ball for Bryn and he walked over and got after me. Bryn also had a major meltdown right before we left and cried for probably a good 45-60 minutes afterwards. I swear, that girl.

I realized I had several pictures on my phone that I haven't put up here. I can't remember what days they're from now, but here they are...

(Don't worry, we have since cut Tyler's hair...)

Tyler is currently obsessed with the show, America's Funniest Home Videos. It cracks me up just to watch him watch the show. He has had me record him several times doing what he thinks are "funny things" because he wants me to send them in so he can be on the show and win a free trip to Disneyland. He firmly believes he would win. He always quotes the show and tells me "You don't win if you don't send it in!" hahaha.

Brynlee misses her daddy a lot, and talks about him all throughout the day. She is obsessed with the color pink, and although she's very girly, she loves to play anything Ty plays with. She will tell me that we need to buy "pink lizards", "pink dinosaurs", or anything her brother plays with--she wants a pink version of it for herself.

Madison brings me books dozens of times throughout the day, sometimes the same book over and over again. I think she's figured out that I always stop what I'm doing to read to the kids. She knows she will always get up on my lap and have a book read to her, if she just brings it to me. I do that because I want them to all love books, but I think she's just using it to her advantage :). She also loves to hug Brynlee randomly throughout the day and it's so stinkin cute.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Not Much

Kenny was able to come home for the weekend and it was SOOOOooooo nice having him home. None of us let him out of our sight for a second and we all mauled him with love and attention :). I don't think he minded a bit. We picked him up at 8:20 p.m. on Thursday night, and dropped him back off at the airport on Sunday around 2 p.m.
The kids were all over him the whole time, especially his little girls. I sure enjoyed having someone here to help hold these needy girlies! (Madi wasn't always crying with him, she just happened to get hurt right as I pulled out the camera...of course)

We are really looking forward to him being with us for good again (Feb. 1st!!). I'm so glad that he's not in the military, or in a job where he travels a lot and is gone. I don't like it at all.

I know I've been a bad blogger. I don't have much to report. Not only that, but I think it would end up being a little too negative or pity-party-ish and I don't think anyone wants to read that. I'm having a hard time right now, and that's all there is to it. But I've got my big girl panties on (that's my mom's favorite expression for when you have to do something hard in life. She just says, "put on your big girl panties".) and I know it won't last forever, even if it feels that way. Maybe just several more months...or years. Hopefully not years. Anyways.

Here's our cute little Madster saying "cheese" for the camera. This girl is a handful. Make that two handfuls. It's a good thing she's so dang cute.

The kids finger painted today, and Brynlee turned it into a little body art at the end. Not only did it leave a nice blue residue in the tub, but she looked half-smurf the rest of the day.

Well it's 10 p.m. and even though the dishes aren't done, I'm calling it a night. Good night.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Missing You

Just woken up and looking at the freshly fallen snow. It's beautiful.

Dear Kenny,

You'd think this would get easier, or that we'd get used to you being gone, but it hasn't, and we're not. The last few days have been hard for me, and we're so glad you're going to make it home this coming weekend. Something to look forward to!

Madison is especially struggling lately, and it dawned on me today that maybe it's because you're not here. Or she senses big changes like a new little sister coming, or that we're moving. Goodness knows she has several reasons to pick from, so I can't blame her. I'm trying to be more sensitive to the kids and all that's going on. I rarely sleep alone at night, all 3 sort of take turns climbing into bed with me for various reasons but I don't mind.

As I was shoveling the driveway yesterday and all the kids were out playing in the snow, I realized that I really need to get some snow boots and snow clothes before we move to Alaska. We will all definitley need them. Tyler really wanted you to help him build a fort, but I told him there will be plenty more opportunities to build snow forts where we're going. Madi always looks so cute all bundled up. Poor gal can't get up when she falls down cuz of all the snow gear haha, it cracks me up.

I find that I really relish my down-time at night right now. After the kids go to bed it is so nice and quiet. I watch a movie, or read. This week I read the book Sarah's Key, and then I found the movie in Redbox so I watched it too. They changed a lot of the story, but I always love love love to hear french. Don't forget you promised to take me back to Paris someday...someday. It was a good book, but so depressing. My project the last couple nights has been cutting up all your old jeans to use as scraps in a rag quilt. I'm so glad you suggested that before we dumped them off at Goodwill.

The Palmers had us over for dinner tonight which was so kind of them, as Sundays can get really long. James did all the cooking and it was delicious. The kids were excellent at church again today, I was so proud of them.

Well I guess I'll go back to my jean cutting.

I love you.


Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Dear Kenny,
I am glad to report that I got the oil changed in the van today! I know that will make you happy. I dropped Tyler off at Amy's for Joy school, then we went to wal-mart and took the van in. I let the girls wander around and look at whatever the heck they wanted while we waited. We even went to McDonald's (the one inside wal-mart) and split a hot fudge sundae and small fry between the 3 of us. 11:20 a.m. isn't too early for ice cream is it? Nah.

Brynlee found a barbie at the store that she wanted. She asked if she could get it for Christmas and I said, maybe for your birthday. So she says "Ok!" and throws it into the cart. I put it back on the shelf and told her that her birthday wasn't until February 9th. She's been telling everyone it's her birthday all day. Then she'll say, "Today is my birthday in February" haha, she's so confused.

We had to have an emergency evacuation tonight during bath time. Madison had a fecal explosion! Tyler had to shower in our bathroom (thankfully he hadn't gotten in yet). I got them and the tub and the bath toys all cleaned up and taken care of, and wished you were here. We will all be so glad when this darn stomach bug is over with. It sure does hang on for a long time.

Tonight while trying to clean up dinner, Ty and Bryn were being dogs. They would crawl over on their hands and knees with a stuffed animal in their mouths. I would take it from them and throw it as far as I could into the other room, then they would go "fetch" it and bring it back to me. Fun game huh? It kept them busy for a while. It reminded me of when I was little, I used to love pretending I was a horse, or dog, or cat, or dinosaur. Being a kid is the best.

Did you know the Roku remote has been missing ever since you left? Did you pack it in your suitcase? Seriously, I can't find it anywhere. Thank goodness you downloaded that roku remote app on my phone or we would have been without tv the whole time!

I'm sort of going crazy waiting for you to call right now. I hope you do soon. I love you so much.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I just got the kids to bed, even a few minutes early! I opted out of going to Young Womens tonight. I figured it would be a little pointless for me to try and be there with these 3 crazies. Today started out with Madi having a nice big blow-out first thing this morning. Ya know how I set that goal to wake up 30 min. earlier than the kids and be showered and have my scriptures read before they woke up? Well it turns out Madi also made a goal at the same time, to start waking up between 6 and 6:30 now. That kind of ruins my plans.

My visiting teacher, Tacie Kerr, came over today with her cute daughter Cambrie. I just love that woman, she is a great example to me. She also brought dinner for us. Homemade spaghetti sauce, french bread and noodles. Nice and easy to throw together. Although every night that I make dinner, I wonder why I bother. The kids don't eat anything, I swear. I suppose the developing fetus needs more than cold cereal or chicken nuggets. But it still seems like such a waste most nights.

We went to the library this afternoon. I decided to not bring the diaper bag, thinking that we could make it for that short time without it. But Madi decided to poop again (diarrhea, remember) approximately 4 minutes after we got there. I knew it was only a matter of time before it oozed out of her diaper and through her clothes, so I was really trying to hurry us out. Only problem is Madi didn't want to be hurried out, or put in the stroller. She wanted to walk like a big girl around the library and pull books off the shelves. That's so much funner. I also didn't realize I had taken off the library card from my key ring and put it onto yours a while back, and they would NOT let me check out without it. Plus my drivers license is still from Idaho, which caused all kinds of confusion for them. Madi was screaming so much when I put her in the stroller that I couldn't hardly hear this lady that would not work with me, so I got Madi out. I was trying to see if there was any way they could just look up our dang account. Meanwhile, Madison found some piles of papers behind me and was dispersing them all over the floor. Awesome. I scooped up Madi, awkwardly bent down with my massive belly to pick up the stupid papers, put our books on the counter and said, "could you at least hold these for me?!" I forced Madi into the stroller, still screaming, and left. She cried the whole way home. I wanted to yell "throw me a freakin bone here woman!!" But instead, we went home and changed Madi's diaper, found the library card, and went back and got our books. I left them in the car that time. Don't you wish you were here to join us on our library trips? I do. I'm not sure we'll make it to the library, or anywhere else for that matter, once we have this 4th child. T minus 8 weeks baby.

P.S. We have a three dollar fine.

Monday, January 9, 2012


Hello again darling. So I have the most adorable picture of Madi to show you. Sometimes I just can't believe she is mine, or rather, ours. She is so stinkin cute I could die!

I love how she just tries to keep up with her big brother and sister. I always forget how big the gap is at this age between what they understand and know, and what they can communicate.

She just wants to be one of the big kids, and she knows exactly what's going on all the time. She didn't even want to get in the stroller to go walk down to the park today. She just wanted to walk like a big girl. And for a long time, I let her. But she also doesn't understand that the street is off limits, so she finally ended up back in the stroller, kicking and screaming about it.

Ty got a little practice on his new scooter. He sure loves his snow boots, and calls himself a Sergeant when he wears them.

Brynlee was pretty difficult today and threw more tantrums than I care to think about. That girl has no sense of obedience, and is so independent and stubborn sometimes I just honestly don't know what to do. I think she could run the world someday if she can figure out how to channel all that strength in a positive manner.

I was supposed to have a dr. appt. this morning, but I had to cancel it again because the kids have all caught the stomach bug we had. Brynlee was throwing up and Ty and Madi both have diarrhea. So we ended up going to Wal-mart instead for a few essentials: Coke and crackers for their tummies, A&D ointment for Madi's poor bum rash, and some chocolate to help me get through the day :). We also picked up the movie, Mr. Popper's Penguins. I really can't stand Jim Carrey, but Ty and Bryn liked watching the penguins. At the end during the credits, we were all up off the couch dancing to the song "Ice, Ice Baby". I decided it was a great theme song for our family this year. Don't you agree?

I had Tyler writing some numbers today and he did more than half of them backwards. I realized we have been focusing on letters and neglecting numbers for several months. Good reminder for me.

I'm glad you weren't really affected by the tornado down there today. Scary stuff those Texas storms. I checked the weather here and it was 40 degrees. I looked up what it was in Anchorage and it was a whopping 1 degree. I'm sure going to have to change my perspective on what "nice" weather is. I think what we had here today is going to be balmy weather in our near future. Crazy. I kept having the quote from Charles Swindoll come to my head..."The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day." I love that.

Well I miss you and love you so much. Good night.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

4 Days Down

Dear Kenny,
Has it really only been 4 days on our own? Lame. Well here's what we've been up to lately. Thursday I took the kids to the indoor Rainforest place at the zoo. It's nice that it's free with our membership--too bad we won't get to use it much longer. We got there right as they opened so we had the whole downstairs place to ourselves! It was so nice! Madi loved walking around and looking at all the animals by herself, without anyone to get in her way. She loved the fruit bats and the fish the most. Of course I forgot my camera, so I only got a couple lousy shots with my phone, but better than nothing.

Natalie Palmer and her kids came over for dinner that night because they were husband-less/father-less too.

Friday we had joy school over here again. That was my last time teaching, and I'm sad we're leaving that early. Tyler loves it. They're good kids, and it's fun to have them all play together.

Ty and Bryn love playing in the snow. Madi is so cute to stand by the door and watch (she doesn't last nearly as long as they do). They like to throw snowballs at the glass and smear it around her "face", they crack themselves up.

Brynlee's new place to play--Madi's crib!

Saturday around noon, Joslyn came over and trimmed the girls' hair, and cut my bangs too. I didn't get a picture of Madison's first hair cut, because I was holding her. But she did a pretty good job, especially when I bribed her with chocolate chip cookies.
It warmed up to high 40's, maybe even low 50's the day before. So all the snow is melted and the sun has been shining. I'm still glad you bought all these big balls. The kids love them.

I know I told you I would blog more often so you could get funnier details of the day, but I obviously haven't done a very good job of that. I'll try to do better this week.

I didn't get much sleep last night because more stomach/heartburn/digestion issues. Oh and Tyler slept with me because his tummy was hurting too. He really loves not having to sleep all by himself, and I don't mind. I love having my children close to me. I sure miss your warm (or rather, hot ;) )body next to mine, though.

Church went well today; everybody is so kind. Amy Franklin and Beth Herod were happy to take Madi so I could teach young womens. I was the only leader there for young womens today, so it was nice that I didn't have to worry about Madi too. We left the kids' backpack there, so I'll have to go back and get that. I broke down crying while driving home from church, because I just love everyone here so much, and I'm sad to leave them. Everyone is so kind and keeps trying to help and wondering what they can do to help us. My biggest struggle with moving is not saying goodbye to people, but feeling like I can never truly thank them or let them know how much their friendship and kindness means to me. It's like we're being mean by leaving after everyone has welcomed us here so readily.

Well we miss you like crazy and look forward to hearing from you when you get back from church.

XOXO, Linds

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Let The Craziness Begin!

big news: We're moving to Anchorage, Alaska!

We found out yesterday that it's for real. We are being re-located there with Kenny's current company, URS Energy and Construction. We are expecting to be there for 2-3 years. Kenny flew to Houston, TX this evening and starts work there tomorrow. He'll be down there for the next month doing some training, then we should move up to Alaska the beginning of February. Yes that puts me 3-4 weeks away from delivering this baby, and yes I'm sort of freaking out inside. We're kind of caught up in this whirlwind of events, and I'm afraid it's not going to subside till at least April. We are trying to figure everything out and praying for help as we go along. We may be bringing this little girl home from the hospital to a hotel, but as long as she's healthy I suppose it doesn't matter. I'm hoping the next 4 weeks pass really quickly, as I already miss my man. We're excited for this next adventure in our lives, and feel like it's a good opportunity for Kenny in his career. This will make our 4th state within a year! Hopefully things will settle down for us a little bit after this. I'm voting for no more babies or moves for at least 2 years! :)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Welcome January!

I can't believe it's already 2012! Wow. Let's see for a little catch up...
New Year's Eve we went out to eat at a yummy Chinese restaurant (Vieng's Asian Bistro in Crocker Park) with our friends James and Natalie Palmer. It was so much fun to get out and go on a double date with them. Emma babysat for us again, and we told her the kids could stay up till we got home. Unfortunately dinner took for-eeeee-ver. So by the time I got back from taking Emma home they didn't get to bed till 11 p.m.!! Yikes that's a record for sure. Church came bright and early at 9 a.m. the next morning. I stayed home with Madison because she had been running a fever all night...again. This girl is cutting one molar after the other and I swear it's going to kill me! Kenny got a stomach bug on Christmas, a few days later I caught it, and I'm still not fully over it. Nothing like a good purging cleanse for the new year right? So we're hoping for some sleep in the next few days...but I'm not holding my breath. I think madi's officially confused as to which bed is really hers now. Her most favorite spot is nestled right in between her mom and dad. It's not my favorite spot for her, that's for sure.

It's been snowing a lot the last few days and the kids are sure enjoying it :).

Below: Brynlee is so excited that "her sister" is out with her in the snow. For some reason she never refers to her as Madison, or Madi. It's always "my sister". It's so cute.

Kenny had work off yesterday and it was a nice little family day. We had fun just playing, a little cleaning, and drinking hot chocolate. Below: Kenny set up some new targets for Tyler's Nerf gun other than his mom and sisters :).

Our family theme for this year is taken from Pres. Monson's first presidency message from this month. We are going to CHOOSE A POSITIVE ATTITUDE. It was really sweet when we were talking about it last night during FHE. I realized that my children are such good examples of this. They really help me to see things in a better light, and they are just so naturally happy and full of light. I'm so grateful I have them.