Saturday, October 30, 2010
Here is the poem I wrote for him when he was 3 months old, almost 39 years ago.
My baby is love's masterpiece.
From the top of his head, to the tips of his toes,
He's our own very special someone,
Who amazes us as each day comes and goes.
He has a small tuft of brown and blonde hir,
His eyes are full of stars and shining all the while.
A tiny pug nose in a pert little face, and
His mouth is always in a three cornered smile.
My curious little baby, arms flailing in the air,
Hands groping and clasping his new world,
To touch tenderness and love,
His tiny closed fingers are quickly unfurled.
Best of all is his bright personality,
Warming the hearts of his family.
Giving an extra important meaning,
To the lives of his brother, Mommy and Daddy.
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Always one to focus on having a marriage, family, and the "happily ever after", I really never had any other goals even though my grades and intelligence probably would have allowed for a different walk in life. Back then it didn't even occur to me that I could have both. I wanted a baby right away. Every little one I saw I would turn to Bud, with my little puppy eyes and say,
"I want one", like a baby was something in a store window you could just order from Santa Claus. Bud, believe it or not, was more practical. He was 24 so I guess he knew how young I was and how long we had to have and raise children. Also, he wanted to have a house first. So we worked toward that goal. In January, 1968 we got our first home. I was barely 20.
That goal accomplished I was immediately ramping up the conversation about that baby I wanted. We had been married a year and 1/2 and we had enjoyed the time together. We were able to be spontaneous and loved time at the beach, battles of the bands, movies, camping. We really "dated". I thought a baby would only add to that happiness. Finally about a year later Bud agreed that we could stop trying not to, and let nature take it's course. We were so excited when we finally knew that baby was on it's way.
This was pre "natural birth", pre "pampers", pre knowing what the sex was until the baby was born. We honestly were shocked that our first was a boy. We were sure that we would only have girls because of the high count of females on both sides of the family. But we had that little boy, and then began the adventure of being a parent.
Marque was the first so all the newness was there, the excitement, the fear, the wonderment of parenting this little life. I've always said he pretty much raised himself, not because we weren't there every step of the way, but because he is a wise spirit so we could just guide him without too much effort.
When he was two I wrote a little poem after I realized that I wanted to try to catch this little guy's antics on paper. Hard to do, but when I read it again I remember those special moments so well of my little two year old. This was the first poem I ever wrote, ever.... I think it might be special to Marque because it was written when he was exactly the same age as Leah is now.
Cars and trucks zoom, Jack-in-the-box pops,
Everything is going busily,
Then from across the room,
My two year old shouts, "I yuv you Mommy."
His head bowed, eyes peering up,
Knowing he's been very naughty,
With inborn psychology,
He looks at me, and says, "I yuv you Mommy."
Crawling on my lap, arms clasping my neck,
As he gives me a hug every so tightly,
This is the best time of all,
When he whispers, "I yuv you Mommy."
I found some pictures I was going to scan of Marque at two, but my scanner/computer aren't talking so I will have to add them later.
Marque, Mommy yuvs you!
Saturday, October 23, 2010
This one is Jimmy's take on my Accordian Folder:
"My mom kept her bills in this brown accordian folder. Though it's an extremely efficient tool my mother unintentionally used it as a device of spine wrenching horror. When that binder came out from the entertainment center the huffs, moans, and whining began. It made it virtually impossible to watch tv and ignore her.
'Oh my gosh! We are so in the hole!' And 'how are we going to survive this week?' All questions directed to us with no answer for us to give. It got to the point that when that folder came out we were gone. I don't mean we strolled out, I mean we ran as if Armagedon was nipping at our heels.
Out and out, she did the job she wanted to do. Kept us fed, sheltered, and many days of fun adventures. It's kinda like that experimental medicine they advertise on tv. See, it does it's job, but you'll always have that lawyer at the end.
"If you're having bill stress, just take one dose of Leslie's folder and you'll be in spirits in no time!"
Lawyer (undertone and fast) "Could cause traumatic childhood memories, can cause irritability, misery, guilt, and the yearning to eat just bread and water for the rest of your natural born life!"
Strange that my kids saw it that way...even in jest. I always remember thinking that kids shouldn't know or feel responsible for finances in the home. I did believe in them feeling part of the family by learning and doing chores, but they are children so they shouldn't worry about money situations. That was my belief, but apparently that "Accordian Folder" had a Mom/Dr. Jekyll effect on me that I had no control over. But, I did do the job, as Jimmy said. I don't think of us realized that we didn't make half the money that our neighbors did because I could stretch a penny like none other.
Monday, October 18, 2010
Last Monday I was laying in bed knowing it was time to get up for work, but instead I just lay there unable to will myself out of bed. As I lay there I felt each muscle as it throbbed it's very own pulse. Massaging my arms I felt knots and bruises everywhere I touched. I found myself singing "The head bone's connected to the neck bone, the neck bone's connected to the shoulder bone". I realized that each muscle, bone and nerve in my body was pulsing to the rhythm of the song and there was an intensity to it throbbing together yet separately. It was no wonder I was so tired.........so extremely exhausted.
In spite of alot of medical issues I "keep on keeping on", except that sometimes, it all hits at once. In Lupus they call that a flare, in fibromyalgia they call it an episode....no matter "it is what it is". There are a few patterns that include my own behavior, other people's choices, and stressful situations that contribute, but one never knows, really. The pain causes exhaustion which causes more pain, etc. It's all very cyclical,
When we were back east this summer my sister, Susan, and I were talking about how grateful we were that her Multiple Sclerosis, and my Lupus weren't as bad as some people dealing with the same issues. Thank you Heavenly Father for that blessing and also for our resilience in the face of those diseases. Susan teaches me how to be patient with suffering, as does my son, who also has an autoimmune disease. I did call attention to the fact that our sister, Lynette, had so much more energy, moved so much better, and was able to take alot of extra steps that we couldn't. Perhaps that's how we could be if we didn't have our diseases.
Recently my family planned a day to the Pumpkin Patch. I was excited to go on this traditional outing with my kids and grandkids, but it came with an awareness that I'm not able to run and do the things I want to do. It came with a price of pain the next day, and the following days. Thank goodness I had already recognized that I couldn't do the Knott's Berry Farm trip with them the next day. That's where the anger comes in....I want my body to function so that I can enjoy all there is to enjoy, so that I can serve all those who need to be served, so that I don't have to look into a crystal ball to see if what I do today will be too hard on my tomorrow's.
I lived for 20 years with back pain. After surgery in 1994 I consider it a miracle that I was one of the lucky one's who was given my life back. I missed so much of my kids lives because of that pain. I felt like I cheated them. Now I feel the same way about missing moments and memories with my grandkids because I am in pain, or if I overdo I will be in pain.
Yep, I am angry with this body. I'm grateful to know that I can feel anger, even if it is with my disfunctioning parts. I'm grateful that in spite of those disfunctioning parts I am still able to function, most of the time. I'm grateful that I have family and friends who understand, remind and forgive me that I can't always do what I want to do.
Well it's 5:30 am so I guess I will try to go back to bed so I can bound out of bed in a couple hours and face another Monday! Yah right....bound out of bed....stupid body!
Sunday, September 26, 2010
God spells it out pretty clearly for us when he tells us that the first great commandment is " love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. " He also said "and the second is like unto it, thou shalt Love thy neighbour as thyself". We are told that these are the two greatest commandments and everything else hangs on them.
Every morning I open my front door and breathe in the day the Lord has made. It makes it so easy for me to feel His love and to give him my love and gratitude. I start my morning prayers with thankfulness for what is right in front of me, "the air I breathe, the varieties of trees and flowers, the birds". What is amazing is that when I say I am thankful for the birds, they seem to multiply and sing even more beautifully, the grass is greener, the sky bluer. Sometimes I am amazed that this is "the lone and dreary world". It makes me wonder at the beauty the Celestial world will hold for us. When I look at my granddaughter's sweet faces I feel His love so innocently, so completely. How blessed I am. It is apparent the Lord does love me and I feel his love enveloping me. This love makes me want to open my heart more fully so His love can fill every corner. I actually experience taking down the fences, even the barbed wire from around my heart when I open my heart to him.
I always understood and found it very easy to love my neighbor, but tended to forget the other part of that commandment "as you love yourself". How many of us have a difficult time loving ourselves? Sometimes we don't love ourselves because we get stuck in the world's image of who we should be. We forget that we were created by Him, in His image, that makes us unique, special, important, and a Child of God. We cannot mock that. We must look beneath the covering and see the jewel inside. If we aren't afraid of rejection because we see ourselves as God sees us, then it is so much easier to reach out of ourselves to give others love.
One thing that was harder for me was to allow others to love me. I have learned to do that. There are so many people who care for me and want to help me through my rough patches that it has really helped me to open my heart for their love to enter in. My children are so ready to give of what they have for me. It has been difficult to want them to sacrifice for me, yet I have felt their willingness, so I have learned to be more humble in accepting their gifts of love. Friends have opened their hearts and homes to me, literally, and I feel so blessed by their love. All challenges, all trials can be overcome with love.
I sat in the living room of good friends the other day with a group of people who were going to the temple together. Unable to make it to the temple that night because of a fire that made the roads impassable, we ended up back at this home. There was a group of around 20. Our wonderful Bishop stood and shared a word of love, and a blessing upon all of us. Another person asked a question of him and all of us shared. I felt consumed by the love in the room. This is what it's all about.
Love is not a noun it is a verb. It requires action predicated by a feeling. It can compound so easily...when one gives love it is a rule of nature that it will be increased and you WILL get it back. If you open your heart to the Lord, He will help you remove the fences, walls, and barbed wire prickles of pain so that you are able to receive and give more love.
So it is simple--
Love God with everything you have....receive His love with all your heart.
Love yourself....have more of yourself to give.
Love your neighbor....they will love you to the greatest capacity that you can imagine.
Simple, not overwhelming. If we love God then we will have no problem tithing, sacrificing time and energy for our callings, reading His word, recognizing and being grateful for His gifts, etc.
If we love ourselves then we save wasted energy feeling sorry for ourselves. We will understand that we have the power within us to overcome trials, to make choices on how we will deal with the challenges. We find it important to live the Word of Wisdom, and take care of our bodies physical, emotional and spiritual health and then we are more able to reach out to others with love.
If we love our neighbor then it is easy to fufill our stewardships to our family, in the community, and in our church callings, especially visiting and home teaching. We will forgive easily those who harm us, and we will not judge others. How could we be unforgiving and judgemental if we truly feel that spirit of love? We certainly don't want to get overwhelmed living our lives, or the gospel, we just need to love and everything else will fall into place.
Sunday, September 19, 2010
I was laying in bed trying to will myself up to get ready for church and the days meetings but I have been having a bit of a Lupus flare, so I have been pretty much non-functioning for the past few days. On top of that I just learned they are auctioning my house next month, so essentially I am homeless.
Although my Lupus flare speaks otherwise because it can come from stress, I have really come to terms with this additional loss. Like my marriage ending, this has nothing to do with me. It comes about from circumstances. I'm sure I have made mistakes along the way, but essentially I had no more control from this financial disaster than someone who loses their home in a natural disaster like flood or tornado. I usually do have more control with what happens in my life than I have had the last few years, so it has allowed me to come even closer to my Heavenly Father and to rely on the Savior. What a blessing that has been.
So, this morning as I lay in bed I listened to "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and my spirit was taken over the rainbow. I felt myself soaring among beautiful fluffy clouds with the birds at my shoulder leading me in peaceful dips and turns to a place where "troubles melt like lemon drops". What peaceful joy to know there is a place beyond the rainbow where we can let our spirits soar unburdened by the weights of the world. We don't need to leave this earth to feel it we can just give ourselves a moment with the Lord and He will lead us there to be renewed, refreshed, dipping in and out of the clouds so that when we are set firmly on the ground we can gather our little troubles around us and lilt through the day with gratitude, hope and peace surrounding us.
Even though it isn't the version that I heard this morning please listen to the following rendition of "Somewhere over the Rainbow" and let your spirit relax and renew.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Late Night Visits
It's two o'clock in the morning,
And though the hours flee,
We're enjoying each others company,
My little baby and me!
Daddy and brothers are sleeping,
So we're having our own little tete a tete,
Oh the secrets we're sharing,
Little Scott Andrew and me!
Chatting, tickling, laughing,
Pick him up and hug tightly,
He tastes so sweet, we're cuddling.
My little baby and me!
He runs around investigating,
Feeling really free,
Cuz "no no's" we're ignoring,
My little "turkey" and me!
Scotty's yawning, head nodding,
Into bed tucked tightly,
Late night visit is sweetly ending,
For my little baby and me.
It is so special to know that Grace still allows Mommy and Daddy to occasionally enjoy their "Late Night Visits".
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Now I don’ t know who to call
When having a drip, drip, drip,
Or hanging pictures on a wall
Spiritual needs have to be met
A healing, a blessing, and all
When you’re a sister all alone
Wondering who to call.
Used to just ask hubby
To accomplish the "honey-do" needs,
To wash my car, paint the fence,
Rid the flower bed of weeds.
What, When How and Who?
Who will take on this honey do list?
Who is there to answer the call?
My Home Teacher would be my guess!
My homey can do my "homey-do’s"
He wants to, he begs to, it's really true!
Every month before the visit is through,
He asks for the list of things he can do.
He’ll take out the trash,
Pat my back, give a blessing,
Fix the darn disposal
While teaching a lesson.
It’s nice to know when I don’t have a honey
I have a Homey to follow through.
Thanks my brother, my friend
For wanting to do my "homey-do’s"!
Thank you Brother Ransier for being such a good homey, you’re amazing!
Leslie Trosper July 13, 2010
Sunday, July 4, 2010
It is a code of belief that has been passed to them through my parents, and their parents. My Grandpa Bliss fought in France in World War I. He was 19 and came home with permanent damage to his lungs from a mustard gas bomb while he was in the trenches. Grandma Bliss is the most recent pilgrim to our country in our immediate family. She came from Scotland when she was 18. She embraced the American dream and wanted nothing more than to be considered American. Others kept their Scottish brogue, but Grandma worked hard to remove any doubt in her language that she was anything but American. My Grandfather Johnson lived his patriotism working farms in South Dakota. He rarely left his ranch to see this beautiful c0untry, but I remember his glassy eyes as he stood at Mt. Rushmore and proclaimed his love for the leaders displayed in granite there. We would go to see them at 4th of July frequently. On one particular occasion when we arrived Grandma Johnson came flying out the farmhouse door saying "hoowah, hoowah for the 4th of July!" That's how my mom and I greeted each other yesterday when we talked on the phone. Our roots of patriotism grow deep. I wrote last year in my blog about my family tradition on the 4th and other patriotic holidays of posting our flag. It was an embarrassment to live through, but I'm grateful for system of belief my parents imposed on me, that I eventually embraced wholeheartedly and (apparently successfully) passed on to my children.
I have a very difficult time sitting while the National Anthem and other patriotic songs are sung in church without standing. For a time I was chorister in Relief Society and would have all the sisters (who could do so) stand and sing each song. I have even gone so far as to ask the Bishop if we could please stand when singing. Today is actually the 4th, so I am already thinking about the discomfort of sitting through a patriotic song, or standing anyway, even if by myself. I love Lee Greenwood's song God Bless the USA, especially where he says,
God bless the USA!
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Besides the miracle of parenthood, there is the blessing of grandchildren. What a joy it is to be able to be a part, once again, of watching from a front row seat a baby discover the world. I look forward to having this baby close enough to just stop by when she is in every stage of discovery. Hailey, Madyson, and Leah were all so far away when they were born. I could only watch through pictures, visits, and verbal updates from Mom and Dad, and I am SOOOO grateful for technology, but Grace will be closeby so I really do have a front row seat to her world.
Yesterday, Madyson (9) sent me a text. It said “When can we have a date for 3, me, you, and hailey?” How special is that? Samantha said as soon as she got in the car Madyson told her she had been thinking all day that we needed to have a date. I called her back to set a date for our get together and while I was talking to her Hailey called to ask if there was any way I could get away from work Friday to see her final GATE project which is a production. I am sad that I won’t be able to leave work, but so happy that she wants me to be there. This is one of the reasons we developed “Date Day”, sometimes called “Hailey Day” or “Mady Day”. When I am not able to be around for a special award, or some other important event….which fortunately isn’t too often because I really do try to make them all….but if it isn’t possible then we go celebrate on another day. It gives us time together, helps me to talk to them, to enjoy something they enjoy, to build a memory.
Building a memory so they remember their Grandma fondly and builds a bit of a legacy to pass on is important. After all I am not going to be here forever. I want to include here a funny moment with Madyson and Hailey from around 2004. Hailey and I were facing each other having a discussion about life and death. I can’t remember exactly why, but I do remember we had the Childcraft out on the human body. Anyway, Mady was sitting on the couch beside me off in her own world, seemingly uninterested. While we were having the discussion I said to Hailey “It’s just a part of the life cycle, everyone dies sooner or later.” Without missing a beat or even turning her head Madyson patted my leg and said “Sooner for you, huh Grandma?” She followed it with a wink and a cluck of her tongue to let me know this was a joke. She was just 3 ½ at the time. I laughed so hard.
Speaking of laughing hard I had Madyson laughing hysterically one time. I got a new mattress set that made my bed quite high. I was demonstrating how I had to get in bed each night. First I walked up next to the bed, through one leg up, grabbed some sheet and tried to pull myself onto the bed grunting and grimacing. The other method for getting onto the bed was to go back into the hallway, drop to a starting position, run and jump onto the bed somewhat like a pole vaulter makes it over the bar. This again was accompanied with the appropriate amount of facial antics. I delighted in her contagious laughter that was so powerful she had to alternate between holding her aching belly and squeezing her cramping cheeks. It is equally as funny when she still acts out “Grandma getting into her bed” frequently.
Hailey enjoys humor, especially humor accompanied by sarcasm. I tell her that she has a black belt in sarcasm. I know that not everyone enjoys this kind of humor, but apparently we do in the Trosper family. Although I do remember asking Hailey how she got so good at it at such a young age. She said, “It’s rather obvious, look who I lived with for all those years, my dad and my Uncle Scott.” My reply was “I don’t know where they possibly learned sarcasm.” To which she replied “Hmmm, I don’t know Gramma, it couldn’t possibly have been from you, could it?” “No, no way.” Later when I said something apparently with a tinge of sarcasm she said, “Hey Gramma, I think I see a bit of sarcasm on your lip, do you want a napkin for it?” Ha ha ha! Now I don’t care who you are, that’s funny! Obviously I could go on and on about these two girls antics. We have serious moments too. Hailey is at an age (12) where she gets mortified by anything and everything any of us do, do you remember those days? Well, to empower her we made a pact that if I ever embarrassed her she could remind me of the day we made the pact in Coco’s restaurant that she would tell me if I ever made her feel uncomfortable. Shortly afterward we were at John’s Incredible Pizza and I was dancing around as we were walking through the place and Hailey quietly tapped me on the shoulder and did the “eye to eye” gesture, just quietly reminding me that I was being embarrassing . I stopped. Don’t always guarantee I’ll stop that easy, but I did that day. I am so grateful for the special relationship we share.
There have been many moments in these blogs that I have shared the amazing connection that I have with Leah. She is clear up in Utah and that is tremendously sad to me. I want to be there to share those special moments building memories with her as well. I am so grateful that through Marque and Sarah’s blog, and great picture taking I feel like I totally know Leah. They have also made the effort to be here for family activities so we rarely go more than a few months without a Leah connection. She is such a joy. Her smiles, laughter, and character make her an enchanting, precious part of my heart even through cyberspace. She was so accommodating to sit by herself for the first time when I was up there, and take some of her first steps when she was down here. When she was about 6 months she learned how to point when she saw the little stain glass birdies flying in my window. She really loved those birds. I was surprised on her last visit when she was just shy of 18 months that she did an intake of air and pointed at them again. It was obviously a memory of her friends and she waved, pointed and said “goodbye” to them just before she headed home. I just bought her very own birdie to hang in her window. Maybe it will connect her to her California Gramma a little more.
Now, we are just around the corner from a new little one to love and build memories with. Her little bedroom is pink and brown with butterflies and flowers. It’s a perfect place for a little girl. The bassinet is in place next to mommy and daddy’s bed. The closet and drawers are filled with little girlie clothes passed on from cousin Leah, and friends Lauren and BrookLyn besides the new ones that friends, aunties and grandmas just couldn’t resist. All is in readiness, everything is right, just waiting for your little tiny, precious body and spirit to fill our hearts and lives . There is nothing in the world to compare with being a mother, but watching your children be parents to your grandchildren is love to the highest degree. I’m ready little Grace, we all are! Just a few more days!
Sunday, May 9, 2010
I don't know how to place pictures in a blog in any certain order, but these are just a few random shots that show what I love about being a mother!
Soon, very soon, I will have a new granddaughter. Her name will be Grace...I am sure she will be a very special addition to the Trosper family. I have a big part of my heart saved just for her!
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
When I was at a Bliss Family Reunion a few years ago they gave awards for different things, and when they were giving the award for the "Pollyanna" of the family I was surprised that most of my aunts, uncles, cousins, brothers and sisters shouted my name in unison. The other day my cousin told me I was a real genuine "Pollyanna". Also, one time there was a long conversation on our family website about a picture that was posted when I was 8 years old, noting that I wasn't smiling. They couldn't imagine what was wrong with me that day because apparently many thought that I ALWAYS smile. Well, obviously I don't ALWAYS smile, but I concur that I do usually find the bright side of life, want to fix things (and people) if they aren't working (or happy). I am a grateful person who can find beauty around me, even if my current situation isn't beautiful. So I always enjoy "spurts" of joy, but is this attitude always beneficial? I think I am learning that it isn't.
I was blessed with a forgiving heart, I don't know how to hold a grudge, and I have a large capacity to love unconditionally. I am not patting myself on the back because it is not something I worked hard to attain. It seems either I was just born with it, or it was conditioned into my life at a very young age. Trying to live as closely as I can to Christ's example is important to me, so I have made efforts there, falling short of course, but always trying. It has been brought to my attention by many people that I love very much that perhaps too much of a good thing is "too much of a good thing".
I just googled "Pollyanna" and this are the meanings it listed.
an excessively or blindly optimistic person.
(often lowercase) Also, Pol·ly·an·na·ish. unreasonably or illogically optimistic
Uh-oh! That doesn't sound so good; "blindly optimistic", "unreasonably optimistic"? So "Pollyanna" is probably akin to "Queen of Denial"? As I look at life as it is for me I am recently learning that I really do fall into this description. My Doctors have always told me that my health is affected by unresolved issues and "stuffed feelings". As my last blog indicated, I have had several friends that have seen something in my face, attitude, and shoulders that they thought indicated that I wasn't okay even though I claimed I was. Well, I was okay. Playing my little "glad game" of positivity so well I can fool myself I guess.
Family members and friends have been amazed that Bud and I have retained such a close relationship since our divorce. I was always happily married and in spite of Bud's recent change in his life, views, and desire for marriage...I was still the same person. I tried to be angry because I thought it might make it easier for me, but it just didn't stay....not an emotion I carry around. Bud doesn't mind being in my life as a handyman and a friend. I have always been concerned with his health, needs, emotions, financial situation and relationship with the kids and grandkids....kind of sounds like marriage doesn't it? Guess my brain, heart or some part of me didn't realize I was divorced. Problem is, it is hard for me to be around him. The line blurs and I find myself wanting to stick my hand in his, my arm through his, and even to curl up on his shoulder. Not healthy for either of us. Actually, I thought it was okay to get along, to be friends, to see the best in him and our relationship, but I find it does affect my health. Frequently after I see him, or we have a family get together I have had an increase of pain from my fibromyalgia, more tiredness, and even ended up in the hospital. Problem is, being a "Pollyanna" I don't even tie those things together. I'm just are "glad" I DIDN't have a heart attack after all. Or "glad" that it is a beautiful day today instead of raining causing the fibromyalgia to be worse.
I do believe my "Pollyanna" attitude has a tendency to make me co-dependent. As the "Queen of Denial" I can see that maybe I missed signs that would have told me things in my marriage weren't as good as I believed it to be. There have been other circumstances in my life, and those close to me, that probably would have had a different result if I had actually "seen" them rather than putting my "rose colored" optimistic spin on things. I actually believe that it may just be another way of putting my "head in the sand".
So with the help of my friends and family I am going to be making some changes in my life. I am going to put me at the top of my list once in awhile. After all the Lord said "Thou shalt love thy neighbor, as thyself." How do I change? Do I want to become burdened with the woes of the world, or even my own life? No way! Should I try to feel my feelings, react to them, and then see the brighter side of life? Probably. That way I can protect myself, keep from sending others mixed messages, and resolve issues before they exacerbate. So I am determined to stay positive, find joy in all things, but to take the words "blindly", "unreasonably", and "illogically" out of my optimistic attitude.
Friday, April 30, 2010
Saturday, April 17, 2010
We had an awesome Easter. We missed Marque, Sarah, and Leah as we always do when they aren't with us, but they sent me pictures of my little Leah hugging her bunny rabbit that Gramma sent her. She is so sweet!!!! Head cocked and loving it with all her might. (I wish I knew how to download from my phone.)
Anyway, those of us in California went to Palm Springs to the time share. It has an amazing slide going into the pool and Hailey had a blast going down. Jim and Scott tried it a few times too. Mady enjoyed the smaller slide because we just couldn't convince she was really missing out with the big one. The water was warm, sun bright, and we relaxed, talked, played with a ball that skipped across the water, sat in the hot tub under the waterfall. Nice!!!
Bud and I made the spaghetti dinner on Saturday night. Jim and Sam treated us to eggs benedict Easter morning after the girls found their baskets. They are really beginning to trust the fact that Easter bunny will find them wherever they are. What a smart dude! I tell you our family Easter Bunnies (Samantha and Cynthia) really took care of us too. In between watching conference we were back by the pool until we decided it was time to make our appetizers. That was fun.
I had everyone bring ingredients to an appetizer they enjoyed. Then I collected the recipe cards and switched ingredients. Jim and Sam ended up with the ingredients that I brought, Scott and Cynthia got Jim and Sam's appetizer ingredients, Hailey and Mady got Grampa's ingredients and Bud and I got Cynthia and Scott's. The rules were that you had to use those ingredients, but you could use other things that you found too. It was kind of like "Chopped" on Food Network. What fun, and really tasty. Everyone did well.
I also brought pedigree charts for everyone to fill out, and a mad-lib regarding the Trosper Easter. We ran out of time to do the camera Scavenger Hunt I planned so we will have to save that for another holiday.
The prime rib, ham, baked asparagas, fruit salad, and garlic potatoes Scott prepared were yummy and ended the weekend on a very FULL note. We expressed love for each other, and for the Savior, so it was a special time of gratitude as well.
I didn't have a camera so I hope someone will send me pictures so I can add them to the blog. Puleeeeeeze!
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I get all gooshy and my heart melts when I see pictures of Leah over the internet. One step better is a video so I can hear her chattering along with the pictures. Then to hold her, hug her, feel her heart beat next to mine is just addicting. I want more, more, more.
Marque and Sarah appreciate the birth mom, Caitlyn, so much. Above the rocking chair in Leah's room is a framed piece that has the following words on it. "When I'm worried, and I can't sleep, I count my blessings instead of sheep"
Caitlyn and her family were also adopted by Marque and Sarah. They invite them to be a part of Leah's life. Not too much that it would ever be confusing, but enough that Caitlyn continues to know how grateful they are. And that Leah will some day know that too. They call her their angel. Caitlyn made some mistakes but she didn't compound them by keeping a child she felt she was not ready to raise. She loved her baby enough to give her a better chance. Leah is so blessed that Caitlyn chose Marque and Sarah as her parents with Heavenly Fathers guidance.
Marque and Sarah don't just thank Caitlyn and leave it at that. They are forming a foundation to put their hearts and money where there mouth is. It will offer a scholarship to young mothers who choose adoption rather than abortion or raising the baby as a single teenage parent. This will help them get back to their lives and even take a step forward. The first recipient will be Caitlyn appropriately. The foundation also will help parents seeking adoption as a way to build their family.
It's a beautiful thing and this mom and gramma is so very proud. So very in love and so very proud.
Here is a connection to Marque's blog to read more http://www.marqueandsarah.blogspot.com/.
Monday, April 12, 2010
So many times, we as women, transition into a new life when circumstances require it. My mother was a working woman until she had a couple little munchkins at home so it was better for her to stay home. I don't know if she even thought about "a choice" or not. When my dad traveled for several weeks out of the month on his job, she became a single parent a large amount of time. Then when he wanted to buy a restaurant the stay at home mom became an instant owner/manager. Transitions, not necessarily of her choosing.
I think we don't even realize how flexible we are to bend and twist our lives to the will and requirements of those we love. A friend of mine went from a single woman, to a care giver for her parents without blinking an eye....transitioning without giving a thought to her own needs. After 10 years her mother recently passed away and she now needs to learn to live her own life. Not as easy as it sounds after giving every thought, every moment to her mother's care.
So is it any surprise that when life changes leave us alone to figure out what we want to do ourselves that we are at a loss. This is where I found myself after my kids were grown and on their own. I had many goals in my life, but they were mostly wrapped around my husband and kids, so I rarely gave a thought to myself. There I was with time to spare and no idea what to do with it. Thus, the "empty nest syndrome". We chart our future to include: graduate from school and seminary, go to college to get a bachelors degree and an M R S degree, find a nice return missionary (or convert some unsuspecting soul), get married in the temple, have children, raise them in a beautiful gospel oriented, nicely decorated, happy home filled with love, get them all off to college, and eternal families of their own. Then we pat ourselves on the back and wonder "What now?" Most women don't plan beyond that. We should. Our relationships with our husband, family, and friends need to be nurtured. We need to also stay active in hobbies and interests that are ours alone.
After my kids were all grown I went with a friend to a class at Chaffey College called "Women in Transition". There we found that we were not alone. There were many women questioning "What now?" in the class with us. It has been many years, but one of the things I remember is the teacher asking what we do for ourselves. Most of us replied "Who me? Nothing!"
She encouraged us to write down ways that we would like to be nurtured. She also told us we needed to find a space that we could go to feel peace and relaxation. I immediately went to a florist and set up a plan to come in each week to pick up some fresh flowers for my table at home. Since fresh flowers brighten up my house, they brighten my spirit as well. But that wasn't the main reward, it was that I was important! Important enough to do something for me each week. I was on a budget so I only spent $5.00 on my flowers, but was amazed what delightful bouquets I got for that small price. Somehow taking them out of a florist wrapped in the lovely green floral paper, created just for me, made it even more inviting than picking them up from a local grocery store. I think I need to go to my florist tonight! Just writing about it reminds me of the joy that brought me. I also have always created a wall, usually by my bed, that helps me melt into meditation. Problem is, you have to give yourself that time. I have a cd player right there too, but rarely remember to turn it on. I used to put a little Enya on and drift away into sublime peace.
I was asked a number of years ago who I was and what I enjoyed. My response was that I loved going to soccer games and watching my kids play, or that I loved spending time playing games or going places with my husband, etc. The response was "Now tell me what you like without using your kids, husband, or house in the sentence." Oh my gosh I stuttered and stammered and realized my whole life was wrapped up in them, and that I couldn't think of one thing that didn't include them. It took me a long time of thinking to be able to say that I love writing, spending time with friends, art....oh I love art! Not my own, although I believe some day I would love to paint again. Painting, sculptures-art in museums and in books. They tell such stories. Music is my absolute joy and can bring me up or give me peace with the perfectly chosen artist. I also like decorating for myself and others, spending time in nature (particularly around water), dancing, cruising, traveling....I enjoy the journey as much as the destination. There are so many other things on my list for my transition into retirement.
There are many retired folks who come into my office to pay insurance and love to just sit and talk forever! Now, I know I am a nice person, but still....why would anyone want to sit around an insurance office for an hour? Because they are bored. They need conversation, something to do with their lives. I have friends who say they have trouble getting up in the mornings because they have nothing to do, no goals, no interests, no desires. That would be tough. I am glad I faced this idea of "transitions" a little earlier in my life and have a plan in mind for my semi-retirement now that I am working just three days a week, and for my eventual full retirement.
Transitions usually come into our life unplanned, and we find ourselves unprepared. From the time our babies stand up on their wobbly legs and want to see their little world, when we want to still be cradling them in our arms, to being ready for them to get their drivers licenses and date before we see them as much more than toddlers. We need to be prepared for the transition. We need to set things up for the day that they go to college, marry, and leave our nest. We might need to even think about and get ready for the day we are alone entirely. Because believe me, sometimes those transitions are unexpected as well. Plan ahead to nurture yourself during those unwanted transitions in your life. Cultivate your interests now! It will make those times more tolerable, and maybe even desireable in some ways if you recognize life is full of surprises and curves. While you are taking care of your children, grandchildren, extended family, friends, and your husband.....don't forget you!