Wednesday, September 3, 2014

What Blog?

It has been over a year and I feel like I really need to try to get back into journaling. It will be out of order and somewhat random, but the sweet critters are growing so fast; it would be a shame to not write a little.
I guess I should start with my most recent craftiness (growing a human!) I tried to take quite a few pictures during my pregnancy, feeling like it would be my last time. Overall, my pregnancy with Callen was really great. I had to rely on good ol' zofran here and there for nausea, and when I wanted to go out and eat without feeling gross, but the nausea ended after the first trimester. I carried him really high, so it seemed sitting up was more comfortable than lying down, but I had no heartburn, and my hormones just seemed very happy. Food tasted SO so good. I would drop off Beckett at preschool and call Bridget, "Where are we going to lunch?!" She would watch me devour jalapenos and fries and sandwiches and waffles and cupcakes and salads in wonder. Yes, I gain a lot of weight when I'm pregnant, but I really enjoy that food, and it was such a major pleasure this time around. I also know that—even with a disciplined diet—I will gain at least 45 pounds and it will take a year to come close to my pre-pregnancy body, so I live it up!

I talked about waiting for him to make his grand entrance, but as 40 weeks approached, I grew a little impatient, and my mom was in town, so I opted for an induction. I truly felt he was getting big in there, and my doctor didn't sound thrilled about the risks of letting me go too much longer anyway. On April 18th, sandwiched right between my birthday and Travis', we went in around 9 am. It was a busy morning in the hospital so we didn't get rocking and rolling until after 10. Honestly, I was fairly agitated that day. I always get anxious and worried that something might be wrong (Travis reminds me this is just part of my process!), and everyone starring at me and waiting for the big show just made me grouchy. We hung out chatting and reading magazines (thanks, doula Bridget) and eating lots of snacks on the sly while I awaited progression. I labored pretty hard for a couple hours, between my hesitation about going natural and then getting an epidural that didn't seem to be working. Once the happy juice kicked in, it was all smiles and laughter, and the whopping 9 lb 11 oz bundle of yum arrived (just before 5 pm).

The difference between baby 1 and 4 is that I soaked up any opportunity in recovery to be pampered and served. I think I may have accidentally referred to it as a 'hotel' stay a few times the months prior to delivery. I let the nurses take care of him a little at night so that I could rest, and ordered plentiful meals and 'spritzers' (sprite/ginger ale mixed with cranberry juice). Surprisingly, he only ate every 4 to 5 hours in the hospital, but I wasn't about to force a healthy, chubby baby to eat on the clock.

That Sunday, Easter morning, the kids came up to the hospital in their cute fancy clothes that Grandma and Grandpa Thomson had bought them and we left as a family. One thing that I think a lot of people don't talk about (and maybe it's not this way for everyone) is how much you crave time to just bond with the newborn. You have all these emotions of worrying that your older kids will do well with the transition, and you miss them, but you just want to soak up all that newborn goodness. It was very kind of Granberry and Bridget to keep the older kids down at the Bedoyas so Travis and I could have a quiet house for the first afternoon home with Callen.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


Beckett turned 3 on Easter this year. He had a great day. We hosted Trav's family and enjoyed so. much. food. I still feel full thinking about how much I ate and how many pieces of cake I shouldn't have eaten. Oh well! Fun times with an egg hunt, presents, and good company. My wonderful in-laws dress the kiddos for Easter. We are so grateful, and they always pick such adorable little ensembles. Here are a couple snapshots.

Love. Busy. Life.

From time to time I like to make a list of what I'm up to. It's easy as a mom to hustle and bustle around the house and feel a little less than productive at the end of the day. Or maybe it's merely that you can't remember what you did that day...or the day before (haha). One thing is for sure; I'm coming to grips with the fact that I may clean all day and by 8 p.m. there will still be a pile of Matchbox cars on my kitchen floor, a stack of papers on every flat surface, granola bar wrappers in odd places, and crumbs on every rug.

Some days the words, "Hey, Mommy" sounds like a heavenly symphony, and I think I don't deserve such sweet little angels in my life. They are my world and my most true joy, and to feel that is to know there is a God.

Realistically, there are moments where I'm saying to myself, "Who ARE you? I don't even know you?!" and, "Seriously?!"

In case I forget, here's a little of what goes on at the GreenHouse these days:

Breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, and "Mom, I can't fall asleep. I'm sooo hungry!"
Lots of baths that focus less on soap and more on Legos, animal-shaped sponges, Squinkies, and cars
Phineas and Ferb
Making random snacks (sneaky muffins, waffles, smoothies)--and distributing some not-so-healthy varieties as well!
Gym time (I try to exercise 5–6 times a week)
Visiting teaching (women visiting other women for fellowship, support, and a short lesson!)
Church activities
Suporting Mr. T in his basketball (and soon-to-be) softball leagues
So much laundry
Cleaning the homestead
"Mom, my stomach hurts."
Bicycles and scooters in the cul-de-sac
Park days (when we get a warm day)
"Mom, I need a wipe."
Working 10+ hours per week doing my editing stuff
Volunteering at the school
Reading with the kiddos
Watching others' kids
"Mom, can I have a friend over? Or 2? Or 3?"

My most favorite moments of the day usually occur around bedtime. Boston always gets a case of the giggles (as kids we would get similar 'attacks' and my dad would call it Camp Gichigumi). He is so vulnerable and tender at night and sometimes gives me a hug and wraps his gangly legs around me to try to cling on so that I can't leave or will carry him out with me!

Cassidy gives great hugs and is so thoughtful, making drawings for people. She recently told me that she's excited for me to go on my trip because she knows I'll have so much fun. She has an inborn desire to give without thought of what she'll get in return.

Beckett will sometimes say, "Mommy's face." If I turn my cheek to him he'll give the sweetest little kisses. He is by far the most intense of the kiddos, but I have a bond with him that is different and wonderful, and I feel so many positive things for him. If we can harness his focus and passion, he will be unstoppable!


Thursday, February 7, 2013

2012 in Review

When someone asks what I did last week, I may not remember. Thankfully, when I look through the pictures of 2012, I realize we’ve been busy and blessed. Travis had a job change and we are grateful he is employed and has an 8 to 5 schedule that allows him to be home for dinner and evening family time. He coached 4 of the kids’ sports teams this year. It was fun to watch him help a few kids overcome some of their challenges with baseball.

On warm evenings when we didn’t have sports commitments, we took advantage of the 2 small lakes near our home to go fish and canoe. The kids loved catching fish and throwing them back, and finding frogs, snakes, and tadpoles.
During the summer the kids and I would round up what friends we could and head to Pineview Reservoir or Willard Bay for ‘beach days’. Hours just fly when you have a tent to offer shade, food to munch on, and fun company!
We had a blast at our family reunion (my mom’s side) in Eden this year. We rented two beautiful houses and had fun at the water on jet skis, lounging, cooking together, playing games, and grabbing some delicious Huntsville BBQ!

Travis went on his annual boys’ baseball trip to Florida this year. This completes his goal of visiting all the Major League Baseball stadiums. One of the things he loves most about planning these trips is researching the best local cuisine to enjoy!
I was lucky enough to go to Hawaii with Bridget and some of our oldest, dearest friends, Nikki and Jenny. We had so many laughs…and pastries. They are like sisters!
We spent Easter in St. George with my mom, Bridget, Patrick, and fams. Cassidy and Boston just love their cousins. We spent a day at Zion National Park with Bridget’s family and my mom. So fun! The kids were in heaven. They are happiest outdoors.
We went to California and spent a week at my mom’s. The kids enjoyed Sea World and seeing friends. Sometimes it’s just going to the park together that means the most to them. I’m still amazed that Beckett didn’t sleep but a few moments on the road. These kiddos resist shut-eye for fear they will miss a party!
With the help a few amazing neighbors, we made some real strides in our gardening. They helped us develop the right combination of soil, as well as some techniques to get things thriving. Travis built a few boxes in hopes that we would not be overcome by weeding duties. We grew bell peppers, jalapenos, lots of tomatoes, squash, zucchini, strawberries, kale, and lettuce.I think this sparked my passion for blending green smoothies. I’ve been reading and researching, and I feel so satisfied when I stuff spinach in that blender. Mmmm! My family doesn’t exactly share my enthusiasm, but they humor me. I’ve been known to offer a candy bribe. It sounds wrong, but my belief is to enjoy some of the sugar as long as you put in good, too!
Speaking of sugar, before you start thinking this is all too sticky-sweet, allow me to mention that blasted Salt Lake rental home we had! After much debt and deliberation (and with help from above and our amazing realtor), we were able to unload the meth mess we had on our hands. We learned a lot from it, and we feel very fortunate to be able to focus our attention elsewhere. It also prompted me to ask a friend about an editing job she was doing. I was so blessed to have the opportunity to interview over the phone and receive a position; I work about 10 hours a week and get to choose my own hours.
Raising these little kidlets is a big job. It seems someone is always crying, hungry, wanting a friend over, or arguing. They are great kids, and they are the best kids for us. We love to see them grow and build their confidence as they try new things. We love when they trust us enough to share their joys or little hurts. When push comes to shove (and often it literally does!), they watch out for each other, they take the high road, they give in and give love, and want to be with us.
Boston was baptized this year, and he is such a great 8-year-old. He is easygoing and social. He enjoys school and is persistent when it comes to learning a new skill. He lets Cassidy tag along with his friends (she’d prefer to be with him and his buddies over girl stuff most days!) and requires not much more than a steady flow of food, time with Dad, and an abundance of sports. He makes good choices and is kind to others.
Cassidy doesn’t know why girls like Barbies, princesses, and dance. She loves sports and wants to be riding scooters, her bike, and playing soccer and baseball in the yard. She collects stuffed animals and an array of little plastic animal figurines. She cares for them, ties ‘leashes’ on them, and cries when one goes missing, which is when Mom and Dad wish her little loved ones were bigger than pencil erasers! We love that Cassidy is aware, affectionate, and wears her big heart on her sleeve.
Beckett keeps us laughing. He is so energetic, and when he’s not Animal from The Muppets, he looks longingly in my eyes and gives the best snuggs (his word for hugs and snuggles). He is full of wonder and often smells of peanut butter and good ol’ boy sweat. He loves to wrestle, hates to wait, and will take to any old guy (he thinks all grandpas are his “Grammer”). He likes kale and banana smoothies, chicken nuggets, ice cream, and marshmallows. His nappy blonde locks and coy eye rolls just melt my heart.
Of course I couldn't think of my family without thanking my Heavenly Father. He is forgiving of me and has blessed me beyond what I deserve. I don't do the best teaching my kids all the spiritual stuff, but I hope that as they grow they recognize the Spirit in our home and always remember that they are children of God—worthy, capable, loved, never alone.





Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day

Today I just HAD to write a few words about my mom. If you're anything like me, the second you start thinking about everything your mom's done for you and all she means to you (yes, even as an adult!), you can't help but feel a bit emotional. Having my own kids now, I see her in the way I parent my own kids, and I find humor in the payback she always mentioned would come (haha). It's like finally grasping a sense of the depth of love she has for me, the selflessness, the ultimate service and sacrifice, and the joy and exhaustion all rolled into this fabulous little eternal miracle.

I don't remember everything about my childhood, but one strong memory I have is knowing that if I got a skinned knee, or got hurt feelings, I could come crying to her and bury myself in one of her mom-hugs, and everything always just felt...better. On hard days, she reminded me that everything was harder at night, and in the morning, things would feel better. I still know that to be true. Something happens with sunshine and rest.

Being raised by this super mom—who was often found nibbling a straw and doodling in her month-at-a-glance planner (likely planning a big party or PTA event)—always seemed normal, because it was all I knew. If I played a soccer game, she was there. If I had issues at school, I knew my teachers knew her, and I definitely didn't turn down that notoriety (lol). I also knew that she meant business. She wouldn't tolerate me lying, and she always reminded me of the importance of integrity and being kind and human, especially to the underdogs. With her omni-presence in my every care, I knew that if I didn't belong anywhere, I'd always belong to her and I was important in my family. It is only now that I realize there are many kids who feel like outcasts in their own homes. There are moms who aren't invested, who make selfish choices, and who are just not equipped for the demands of motherhood.

My mom is fearless, direct, compassionate, and giving. She has a can-do spirit, and will find a way no matter how difficult or imppossible the circumstances seem. This is especially true in regards to her children. We learned early on that this momma means business, and yet wherever she is, people gravitate toward her energetic, fun-loving, spirited personality. And if being all this wasn't enough, she provided a comfortable home where my friends could come. She accepted and loved my friends, and became a second mom to many of them.

The greatest gift she has given me is that she taught me the importance of motherhood. She and my dad always validated that being an at-home mom was an important job. She always emphasized getting an education, and she helped me understand why college would be a blessing to me and my family, even (especially!) if my employment was in the home and not a corporate position. She helped me understand that, while life holds no guarantees, there is an easy way and a hard way. I'm grateful that she shared her opinions with me and never left questions in my mind. To this day, there is no question off-limits, and I can depend on her word.

Thank you, Moodums, for teaching me how to earn my self-esteem, and for always helping me understand my value as a human and a daughter of God. I always wanted to be a mom because I knew it was and is one of your truest joys. Love you!