Roy, Sheena, D, K, A, C and L

Roy, Sheena, D, K, A, C and L

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

The anniversary we keep celebrating

Now we may not have done something big and/or elaborate for our 10 year anniversary but we have celebrated it repeatedly.  Remember, we went to the Forgotten Carols the day after Thanksgiving.  Then the day after our anniversary we got a babysitter and went out (Christmas shopping but it was out nonetheless!)  Then this weekend we've had more celebratory time together.
We had planned on going to the temple while we were in St. George visiting Roy's parents.  (We're in St. George now....)  It is especially sentimental because this is where we were married.  It was decided we would do some family name sealings.  I also had the opportunity to stand as maternal proxy while my MIL was sealed to her parents.  I was honored she would ask me to do that for her.
Roy and I ended up spending a few hours in the temple doing sealings with my in-laws and some other relatives.  We knew this would probably be the case so we had arranged for my parents to take our kids with them back to Delta and we will follow tomorrow.  (My parents were down visiting my grandparents near St. George.)  This means that we not only didn't have to worry about them while we were in the temple but we also got an 24 hour reprieve without having to care for the kids.  Don't get me wrong, I love those kids like nobody's business but sometimes reprieves are nice.
After sealings, Roy and I spent time walking around the temple grounds and visitor's center.  It was so nice just to enjoy one another's company.  I love spending time with Roy.
Tonight was spent with family - super extended family like my FIL's brother and cousins.  It was ... . ... . .. not as bad as I'd feared.  We had some really good conversations and laughed with some great people.  It was a good lesson to keep an open mind.  Something I have to keep learning, unfortunately.
Tomorrow we're headed back to Delta and our kids.  I'm looking forward to a peaceful drive with Roy and plenty of time to talk, uninterrupted!  Such a precious and rare commodity these days!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

We decided to go to Utah for Christmas with our families this year.  We'd been planning on going after Christmas but decided instead spend Christmas eve and Christmas day with my family before going down to visit Roy's family.  Unfortunately, both Roy and I had responsibilities on Sunday that we felt we should be there for so we didn't leave until early early Monday morning.
Roy likes to sleep for half a night then get up super early and leave so the kids can still sleep much of the way but so he's not driving all night.  This has worked well for us in the past.  This time it was misery embodied for most of us.
To begin with, K (the ONE kid who doesn't get car sick) groaned that her stomach hurt before we were even loaded in the van.  Sure enough, a mere 20 blocks from home she started throwing up.  We should have taken this as a sign and turned back right then but we were way too optimistic to do that!  Besides, she hadn't eaten since dinner the night before so it wasn't too bad.
The trip just got worse from there.  We hit snow in about 5 hours in (it was still dark) and eventually decided to put on chains for a while.  Roy got sick.  I got sick.  The only people who didn't get sick were the two who usually get sick!  Six hours in Roy starts talking about turning back.  No way.  We are going to make it come snow or high water.  And eventually we did.  It took us about 2 hours longer than usual, which considering the roads and illnesses was pretty good time.
Thankfully Grandma and Grandpa Bishop were all set to do fun things with the kids.  Grandma decorated cookies with the kids while Roy and I took naps.  They played and everyone ate dinner.  We rounded out the night with our annual re-enactment of the Christmas story including the prophecies of Samuel the Lamanite (played by our little A), the stable scene and the wise men; a singing of everyone's favorite Christmas carols; and stories from Grandpa.  We sent the kids off to bed so Santa could get to work and get to bed.  It turned out to be a pretty good night.  I love the holiday time and I'm so glad we get to spend it with family.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Makin' my life easier on visit at a time

Today was the first day of winter break and we kicked it off with a trip to the dentist for all the kids.  Before you start to think me the Grinch, you should know that my kids LOVE the dentist.  So much so that they have been using their Christmas countdown calendars to also countdown to the day we go to the dentist.  In fact, on Sunday K excitedly announced, "Only 3 more days before we go to the dentist.  I'M SO EXCITED!!"
We got there and K was called to go in first.  Of course some nervousness had set in so she wanted me to go with her.  All I did was walk through the door with her and she was transformed.  She hopped right up in her chair.  She was cheery and chatty with everyone.  All the hygienists were getting a huge kick out of her.  Our former Bishop is the Pediatric Orthodontist at this office.  He came over to say "Hi" and declared that next time they video a promotion they should plan it when K is there.  She is a natural spokeswoman - telling everyone how much she loves to come and how she's going to be a dentist when she grows up.
My little A was also pumped up by her sister's enthusiasm.  She got in the big dentist chair and laid back for the hygienist to clean her teeth when it was her turn.  I was super proud of her.  This was the first time she's ever sat in the chair and not on my lap.  No tears were shed.  It was awesome.
D was way down the row of chairs.  I went to check on him a few times but he's an old pro at the dentist.  He's maybe a little too comfortable as I had to remind him to not play with the tools.  He had a consultation with the Orthodontist as there are orthodontics in his future but not for another year at least.  Good times there!
So basically, my kids love their dentist.  I am so happy to have such a great office.  I love that there is not fighting or crying from any of them but actual excited anticipation.  Just one way my  life is made easier!

Update 1/7/2013
A and I were driving home from my Dr. appointment today when from out of nowhere A announces, "When I grow up I'm gonna be Docca Todd!"  He's our dentist.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Thinking Thoughts

This is a post about the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting.  I wrote it because I needed to release the thoughts that have been bouncing around my head since Friday.  This tragedy threatens to overwhelm me at times.  I hope you'll be patient with me as I try to process the emotions I'm feeling.

On Friday I taught preschool, got K off the bus and was preparing lunch when I got an automated phone call from the school district.  "In light of recent events across the country, VPS is taking additional precautionary measures, including increased supervision and security, to ensure students and staff members are safe."  Hmm, okay?  There have been some violent acts locally that I figured they were referring to but I decided to log on to the internet to see if there was something up.  And of course there was.
One article was all it took for me to understand the scope of pain fanning across the nation from Connecticut.  A horrific act, unthinkable by all but the most base of minds.  One article changed my day, my weekend and is still lingering today as I kiss K goodbye at the bus stop and drop D off at the front door of his school.  A front door flanked by the principle and a police officer.  
I've thought many times since Friday afternoon, why is this so painful?  There have been other school shootings.  There have been bombings with higher death tolls, even among children.  There are unthinkable acts against humanity occurring every day in other parts of the world.  So what makes this event stand out?
For me the answer is two part.  First of all, this shooting took place in a public elementary school.  We've had school shootings before in this country.  Always they are terrible.  But this was a man who choose to go to a place where the most innocent among us congregate.  He chose the most innocent of those to destroy.  Kindergarten is a time of wonder and excitement as the world of letters, numbers and school in general begins to unfold before young and beautiful minds.  
Second, I am a mother.  I am a mother of the victims.  I have a kindergarten student.  I have an 8 year old.  I send them to school everyday where I trust their teachers to protect, love, teach and nurture their young minds.  So far I have not been disappointed.  Whenever my mind wanders to that hallowed ground in Connecticut, I can't help but see the classroom K goes to every day.  I can't help but think of the two dedicated teachers who work so hard to make school positive for my children.  
And so on Friday I wept.  I wept for the children who died.  I wept for the innocence that was taken from those who survived.  I wept for the teachers who died trying to save their students.  I wept for the teachers who did all they could to protect the students in their classrooms.  I wept for the broken heart of a mother.  I wept for all the Christmas gifts lovingly bought with visions of delighted squeals that will never be heard.  I wept for my children who are safe, my girls downstairs with their innocence in tact and my son blissfully participating in a classroom Christmas party.  I wept for the world in which such an event happens.  Mostly I just wept because there was nothing else to be done.
I wanted to hug my children close to be.  But of course a crying mother is not the security I wanted to give to my girls.  When I could hold myself together, I brought them to me.  We snuggled and giggled in my bed while we watched "Jake and the Neverland Pirates".  I didn't tell them.  Not yet.  We just loved.  And when D got home, he came too.  
But through all these emotions, I have faith.  Even though horrible things happen, evil exists and agency is abused, there is still love and hope.  Although I still feel a cloud of sorrow, I do not feel despair.  I chose to feel hope that comes from knowing with a sure knowledge that those children and all children are loved by God.  I seek comfort from the knowledge that angels attend all children who suffer.  I even take comfort and hope from the knowledge that God will not take away our agency even though it may cause him to suffer and weep as He sees the choices some make.
So for now, I love my children.  I pray for the families who lost those innocent bringers of joy.  I pray for the children who survive that they will be able to sleep peacefully and go to school again someday without fear or anxiety.  I chose to not read the news or stories about the victims because the sorrow of such assaulting violence and even amazing heroism is too much for me to internalize.  I pray for those across the country who do not feel hope - only despair.  And I look to my God for the comfort I need to carry on as a mother and keeper of innocent, beautiful souls.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A Decade

Wow.  When you say a decade it makes it seem like I'm really old.  Roy and I have been married for 10 years today.  We got married on Friday the 13 in 2002.  What changes have happened in the last 10 years!  Of course there are the obvious changes:

  • Both of us now have college degrees and Roy has a post graduate degree
  • We have moved 7 times and live in a state with no family nearby
  • We bought a house and a car
  • We're 10 years older than we were
  • Oh, and:

But there some less obvious changes as well.  I was thinking back to our early college days of engagement and marriage.  We had what some may consider a quick courtship.... 6 months and 1 week to the wedding day.   While I wouldn't change how we did things, it did have some laughable consequences.  Looking back we both smile at how awkward we were when we'd see each other on campus.  Hello, we're married but unsure if we want to walk across campus to class together?!  Like I said, laughable and awkward.  It didn't help that Roy was 7 months fresh from his mission when we got married.  Even he will admit he was green!
The last  year especially has seen less obvious changes that are pretty obvious to us.  We've grown closer and shared more - really trying to lean on one another and be confidants.
So what did we do to celebrate this milestone anniversary?  Well, tonight we went to pack meeting and built graham cracker gingerbread houses.  Following which, we put the kids to bed and spent a rocking good time trying to teach Roy how to use Facebook.  He's been "on" Facebook for approaching 2 years now but still doesn't know how to log on.  It's a bit embarrassing....
In honesty, we purchased and attended the Forgotten Carols a few weeks ago as an anniversary gift to ourselves.  We also have a babysitter lined up for tomorrow night too so we can go out to dinner and/or Christmas shopping.  So while it isn't a beach in the tropics, I'm just glad I get to spend my 10 year anniversary happily married to my best friend.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Learning to take a hint

Roy makes me laugh for any number of reasons.  This is what made me laugh today.
A few days ago Roy forwarded me an ad with a movie in it he's seen several times and likes but we haven't bought yet.  I took it as a hint and bought the movie for Christmas.
So today I saw an ad with a talk on CD that's I've been wanting.  I thought I'd pass the favor along and sent him the ad via email.
"I would really like the talk on CD from Sheri Dew that's on sale here.  Just passing that along in case you wanted to know.  I seriously considered buying it at Time Out for Women."
Here's his response:
"Okay. Are you asking me to buy it?"
My reply:
"I'm telling you I would like it and if you wanted to get it for me for Christmas you could put it in my stocking.
You make me laugh and I love you."

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Festival of Nativities

Every year a local church does a Festival of Nativities.  We love to go down and see all the nativities on display.  The kids love the hands on 'touching' rooms.  And almost every year I forget my camera.  These were all taken with Roy's cell phone.
 The dress up station was a big hit with the girls.  D donned an angel costume and a wise man costume before deciding he was done.  K went all out with a one woman nativity show that only ended because she had to go to the bathroom eventually.
A was more interested in some of the hands on nativities and puzzles but still managed a few costume changes herself.
They all had a really good time.  A kept pointing out all the babies in the nativities.  K really liked the cat nativities.  D did a scavenger hunt where he had to find a list of different nativities throughout the rooms.  It is a very well planned production every year.  I'm glad these are memories we can make with the kids.