Sunday, May 12

I'm their mom

Today at Squaw Peak in Provo, UT
Best job ever.
I love it so much.
Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 4

soul bearing

Like I said, 
it was some winter.
Longest winter ever to date.
The snow & cold were neverending.
It was only made more dreary because
life has just been plum HARD for our family 
these past handful of months.

Mia with her upchuck bowl 
at Grandma's house.
Plus, we had a boatload of sicknesses run
through the household.
Oh, me, oh, my!  Dreadful.
And it seemed like trial after trial kept coming our way.
The kind where I throw my hands heaven-ward and say,
I kept trying to push through with my fountain of optimism
but guess what?
It went & dried up.
Admittedly, the celebration in me completely shut down.
I just couldn't blog.
What was I to share anyway?
This is my happy space.  My gratitude journal.
A sacred home to my precious, joyful memories.
No clutter here, please.
I save that for my journal.
 Wintertime really was dark & long
but exponentially so because of how I handled life.
And it wasn't handled gracefully.
Raw truth.
 My life's motto is to Celebrate.
All things in any situation.
Find a way to have gratitude.
My favorite scripture is to cheerfully do all things.

 And wouldn't you know it.
This scripture:
we picked out back in September to be our family's 
theme for the school year.
But as hit after hit came,
I forgot more & more.
Darkness closed in.  It was awful.
Really, this story does have a happy ending.  Hang with me.....
At my lowest point, I had nowhere else to go but to God.
I've prayed most every day of my entire life
but I hadn't been to Him with my heart in quite some time.
I was driven to my knees, pouring out my soul, seeking guidance & comfort.
I searched my scriptures, craving answers from them.
Nothing miraculous happened. Right away.
I kept at it, though.
And one day, I was with my little baby, and I noticed that I had pure joy filling my heart.
I was just amazed by her & in awe of how awesome she is.
The ache in my heart was gone.  I could not feel the weight of my burdens!
It was amazing.  That pain was just gone.  I was flooded with gratitude for all my blessings.
For this unique, blessed life that I get to live.
To be a wife & mother!  To know that I am a beloved daughter of a Heavenly Father who loves me.
I was so grateful for the Atonement of my Savior who took those burdens from me.
It was beautiful.
I felt changed.  And all my trials were still right there.  
And I didn't know how they would be resolved.
But I had found peace amidst the storm
and knew that I could go on in spite of it.
Oh, man alive, this baby has been such a healing balm
to me this past year.
Isn't it interesting how we must learn the same lessons 
over & over again?
Turn to God, I'm filled with His love,
Forget Him and I'm lost.
So while I could feel a mighty change,
I struggled with finding that extra "oomph" for life.
The zest, the exclamation point, the celebration!
I was feeling at peace but where was my infamous
enthusiasm for this existence?
You readers are doing great, by the way, 
keep sitting tight.
It was around early February,
I took a late-night trip to Wal Mart.
That place makes me grumpy & I put off going there
for as long as I can.
But sometimes, it just has to be done.
I walked into Wal Mart & was stopped in my tracks by this cactus.
It had the most vibrant pink blossoms!
I had never noticed anything like it.
I was intrigued & completely mesmerized right there in Wallyworld.
I stared at this weird little plant and just couldn't believe that a cactus
could produce something so vivid & dynamic.
I had to buy it!  And one with yellow, too.  My favorite color.
I was walking around the store with vigor, passion, fervor!
(I love the thesaurus.)
A sensation of overwhelming gratitude was bubbling up inside of me
to the point of exhilaration.
By the time I got home, 
I could barely contain myself.
At 10:30, I threw open the front door leaving my purchases in the car,
scrambled down the basement stairs to my husband, 
and fervidly expressed my thanks to him for being mine, for our children, for our life together!
I was probably on the verge of seeming really ridiculous but 
there really was no holding me back.
Ah HA!  I was finally high on life again
and absolutely loving it.
 It was always there.
The beauty, the wonder, the blessings.
I just had to align my will with God's will
and press forward with faith.
He blessed me by putting that spark back in my vision.
I love being able to see the stunning details of my life.
It doesn't mean that my everyday life is a party.
We are still going through hard things.
But I needed this lesson.
For some reason, 
I feel like I needed to share it with you, too.
Thanks for listening.

Wednesday, May 1

You're invited.....

from pinterest

We are moving.
Not far, just around the mountain bend.
 But before we do, 
I want to host a lil' shabang at my home for all my gal friends.
We will eat chocolate and giggle and share joy.
It'll be great.
Oh, and I am going to do a "class" of sorts where I share
all my fun ideas on family celebrations/traditions/memory-makers.
Fun?  Oh, yes.
Thursday, May 9th @ 8pm
RSVP to my email.

Sunday, April 28

Sundays are good

Our church doesn't meet until later in the afternoon
so our Sunday mornings have time to be creative.
Like building forts, painting, reading,
making messes generally.
But I have always loved Sundays.

 It just feels different.
It is supposed to feel different & special.
It is the Lord's day afterall.

 I love how Sundays stimulate all the senses.
How it looks, feels, sounds, tastes, and smells.
Dressing in Sunday best, feeling inspired to be better,
listening to music for the soul, smelling roast & homemade rolls.

 I can even remember as a young child
how special Sundays felt.
My mom played such pretty music on the cassette player.
It felt safe & warm & happy.
We had just started going to the LDS church.
It was a big life change and I could feel the happiness increasing
in our family & home.

 I will be forever amazed at my mom's courage
and sensitivity to God's promptings to press forward after a divorce,
raise two little girls,
and leave a religion that she'd known her whole life
in order to do what she knew was right.
She joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
You've heard of the Mormons!

Provo temple
 Now that I'm a mom,
pressing through challenges & the daily grind,
my gratitude for the gospel in my life increases each day.
I am so thankful for goodly parents that raised me in this light & knowledge.

 Mia, Ella & bestie friends
at the temple grounds today

 I am honored to be a wife & mother.
I feel so overwhelmed by this calling sometimes.
Like at bedtime,
tucking in my babes after a long day,
my little heart pounds with anxiety!
"Am I doing a good job?  Is God happy with my attempts?
What if I screw this thing up?  I only get one chance at life.
It's so hard sometimes!  I make so many mistakes.  Help!"
 I'm so grateful to have the church, God, my Savior, a living prophet,
the Spirit, and scriptures as a road map to guide me
through this tricky course.
I will teach these precious children of mine
what I have come to know to be true.

You can learn more about my church and God's Plan of Happiness
Or ask me any of your questions!
b r e e f r o @ y a h o o . c o m

Saturday, April 27


 I love my job.
It's more of a calling.
It is so hard but so amazingly fulfilling.
Yesterday, my little girls & I rode around the city on my bike,
loving this weather, taking in the sites, stopping for a snack.
I was like, "Is this really my job?  For reals?  To share my days with
these darlings?"
I feel so grateful & ebullient.

The days can be s o o o o o long.
And full of so much chaos & frustration.
I feel like I'm running a marathon in my own home some days!
But I am trying to concentrate on my blessings.
And suddenly, they multiply and my heart is exploding with 
love & joy for all that I have.
Especially to be a mother.
 Part of the perks of being a mom?
To bake together, share, deliver, savor!
 PS:  I was out of vanilla extract.  Did you know that 
Mapleline works great as a substitute?

 As busy as I am,
running up & down stairs, chasing the baby to & fro,
lifting Bugg over & over,
you'd think I wouldn't have to work out.
Wrong!  well, perhaps the cookies are to blame. :)

 ......and indulgent dinners.
Actually, ever since we were first married,
Brian requested we have homemade pizza once a week.
While it's not always homemade,
pizza on Friday nights is a must.
With a movie. 
 Ha!  Pizza to this picture.  Nice.
I made these Black Bean Brownies for the church picnic today.
Basically you have to mix them up blindfolded with your nose plugged.
It just seems wrong.  But they are gooooood.
And so dense & moist.
Mapleline worked great in these, too.
No, really.  They are fantastic.  Just don't tell anyone that they have black beans in them. :)
Mia dropped them in the parking lot on the way to the picnic 
so I don't have a lovely finished product to show.
But we still shared them and had only crumbs left!
I am serious!  They are so yummy.

 Do you know what ebullient means?
Look it up.
That is how I feel about this lovely life that I get to live.
You will want to find a way to work that word into your vocab, too.

Bugg is almost always in an ebullient mood.
He is such a great example to me.
He had the giggles big time tonight!
Maybe it's because I had him wear Addie's pink bib.
Here's to ebullient sweet dreams!

Thursday, April 25

day in the life

My day started with brunch with some friends.
I love brunch.  I love friends.  And I love life!
I'd like to just run, jump, & click my heels, you know?

 My baby turned ONE last week!
I know, wow!
 The arrival of Spring's glorious green has done
wonders to my spirits.
My word, that was some winter!

 I crave the library.
Like once a week.
Books & Spring.  Ah!

 Afterschool porch munching.
It's the best.

  A favorite quote by Jaroldeen Edwards.

 Also the BEST:
random picnics in the mountains.

I spied this hidden path a few weeks ago
and knew I could turn it into an adventure.
I didn't know where it led or what was on it
but today we packed a picnic, some books 
& just started walking down the trail..

It turned out to be a secret place,
right up against the mountain!
Mia & I were immediately reminded of the book,
Heidi, which we are reading together.

 Climbing the "Alm"...
by the way, that book is so great.
I can't believe we've never tried goat's milk.
Or seen a real barrel organ.  Or slept on hay.
and yes, Ella is in her jammies. 
Her outfit of choice most days.

 We were re-enacting Laura Ingalls
running as the credits roll on the show. 
 Remember that part?

It was a good day in the life, friends.
Enjoy this amazing season!