"I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life;
to put to rout all that was not life and not when I had come to die, discover that I had not lived." ~Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tonight I Voted

I couldn't believe the turn out for voting tonight! I stood in line for over an hour to cast my ballot. Cody voted on Wednesday and it was the same for him too. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I am so grateful to live in this nation. What a privilege it is for us to be able to vote!

I've decided in the last few days to get out of the bitter barn about the election because that's not doing me or my family any good. The kids can tell that Mommy hasn't been so happy lately so things need to change. I love the saying "Let go and let God." It's so true, but so hard to do at times. The Lord really is in control and I need to remember that.

Tonight during family prayer we prayed that this nation will be okay and I felt peaceful. And even if we do see troubled times, I need to focus 100% on strengthening the one thing that I do have a lot of control over- my family. Our home needs to be a place that is safe and a refuge from the world. We need to focus more on having the spirit in our home at all times. We are going to be okay as long as we are prepared and are doing what's right. I can't control the rest of the world, but I can control myself and my own actions, thoughts, and attitudes.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Troubled Times Ahead

I have been a mess lately. I swear if I hear one more glorification of Obamasiah I am going to puke. I hate to get into politics, and lately I've been feeling so down and I know the election is to blame. I won't go into details about my views or my opinions because I'm sure it will turn into rambling and crying. But I will say that I fear for this nation, and not just because Obama will likely take office in a few short months. I mean because Satan is so influential over numerous issues in this world.

My heart is sick and it's starting to weigh on me. Cody thought I was a rambling idiot yesterday and last night I couldn't take it as we watched "Saturday Night Live" and I threw the remote at the TV and burst into tears. All day long I've felt cynical and sad. What kind of legacy are we leaving our children? What kind of damage do they have to repair? My children and my children's children don't deserve to pay for the mistakes of the of this generation. But they inevitably will.

All day long I've wanted to shout and scream and cry like a baby as I think of what the world will be like in a matter of years. I often times wish the Lord would go ahead and make His return so things can be peaceful. That is likely not yo happen any time soon, so in the meantime I pray for peace.

And then it dawns on me that I am so blessed to have the fullness of the gospel in my life. I know our troubled days were foreseen. They were prophesied of and I signed up for the challenge. How lucky are we to have a living prophet who looks out for us and guides us. In fact, the words to this song have been ringing in my ears all day and tonight I feel comforted.

When dark clouds of trouble hang o’er us
And threaten our peace to destroy,
There is hope smiling brightly before us,
And we know that deliv’rance is nigh.
We doubt not the Lord nor his goodness.
We’ve proved him in days that are past.
The wicked who fight against Zion
Will surely be smitten at last.

How lucky are we to have this knowledge.

Friday, October 24, 2008


It's been fun getting out in the backyard to play football. Ethan has started getting excited about the game and Dad is thrilled. There is nothing like the crisp autumn air on your face and the feel of cold grass beneath you as you fall. This time of year is awesome.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My First Baby

I got this off another blog and thought it would be fun to do. This is all about my first baby.
1. Were you married at the time of the birth? yes

2. What were your reactions when you found out you were pregnant?
Absolutely devastated at first because it threw a major wrench into my academic plans.

3. How old were you? 23

4. How did you find out you were pregnant?
First Response pregnancy test. Wow, my world flipped upside down when I saw that second line!

5. Who did you tell first? My mom. I called her right away and cried hysterically and she couldn't understand me. She thought something had happened to Cody at first. Then when she finally understood I was pregnant she was relieved that nothing bad had happened!

6. Did you want to find out the sex?
ABSOLUTELY!! I was really wanting a girl but as soon as we saw it was a boy, I was over joyed.

7. Due date: That was never for sure because I got pregnant on Depo. My date ranged from January 6 to February 14!!

8. Did you deliver child early or late?
8 days late according to the ultrasound due date.

9. Did you have morning sickness?
YES!! And those people who "brag" about never getting sick need to be shot!!!

10. What did you crave? chili dogs. Funny story- When I was about 10 weeks along, I was walking around one Saturday morning crying because I'd thrown up so much but was so hungry. Nothing in the house sounded good and the smell of almost everything sent me running to the bathroom. At about 9:30 that morning as commercial for Sonic came on and I saw a footlong chili dog. All the of the sudden I turned into a maniac and said (in between sobs) "If I don't get a chili dog right now I'm going to kill someone!!" I've never seen Cody dash out of there so fast. He ran to sonic that morning and got my two footlongs. I wolfed them down so fast. Now when the craving for chili dogs hits I buy one and also stop off to buy a pregnancy test.

11. Who irritated you the most?
Skinny women. Especially skinny pregnant women.

12. What was your first child's sex? Boy.

13. How many pounds did you gain throughout the pregnancy? 70. I hit 205 the day he was born.

14. Did you have any complications during your pregnancy?
Nope. Just a lot of sickness and I got very swollen.

15. Where did you give birth to your child? LDS Hospital.

16. How many hours were you in labor?
21 hours. I started [real] labor at 3:00 in the morning and labored at home all day by myself until 6:30 that night. I had planned on going naturally and I practiced Lamaze all day long. When Cody got home that evening we went to the hospital where I labored naturally for a few more hours. Then I caved and got an epi because the back labor was so intense and my body couldn't relax enough to dilate (according to the doctor, which I now understand was a load of bunk). Ethan's heart rate began to drop down into the 50s and they decided to do a c-section. I was beyond devastated!

17. Who drove you to the hospital? Cody

18. Who watched?
No one but medical personnel. Cody stayed by my head behind the blue drape. But he did accidentally look up at one point and see my guts!

19. Did you take medicine to ease the pain? See #16

20. How much did your child weigh? 8 lbs 8 oz

21. Why did you name him/her the name you picked? We named him Ethan Gilbreth. We just liked the name Ethan and Gilbreth is my mom's maiden name. She has no brothers to carry on the family name, and her father was an only child. So the name would shortly die out in our family.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Pumpkin Patch

Last Wednesday I got to chaperon Ethan's class to a local pumpkin patch. Well, it's not very local because it was over 30 miles away, but it was worth the trip. The pumpkin patch field trip is by far my favorite all year. It was an incredible place with so much to do! A hayride, giant slides, a pumpkin shaped bounce house, a tractor pulled train, and numerous fields of pumpkins!

We had so much fun. Ethan wasn't hesitant at all to go down the giant slides, which surprised me. He did them over and over. They were even a little too tall for me! Lauren stayed in the sling most of the time and cuddled while Hailey tried to keep up with Ethan and his friends. We will have to take Daddy back there sometime because this is now on our list of "favorites".

The Planetarium

Last Tuesday our friend Lydia invited us to spend the morning with her at the Planetarium. This was part of her week long 2nd birthday celebration. We had a good time and these kids can't get enough of space and rocket ships. Ethan especially had a blast time running around checking things out. It was a fun morning!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Ethan The Hero

This afternoon I was feeling extra grubby, even though I showered at 7:30 this morning. So I decided to rinse off again and I put a movie on for the kids while I took a quick shower. When I was almost all done Ethan came bursting into the bathroom and said "Mom! Mom! Lauren is going to fall!" I was scared and asked him what he was talking about, but het jetted from there and ran back out to the living room.

So I quickly got rinsed off, grabbed a towel, and ran out there too. Ethan was trying his best to carry Lauren in from the back deck. It's very hard for him to do this so it was a big deal. Apparently Hailey had opened the sliding door and wandered outside and Lauren followed. She was just about to fall down the 14 steps when Ethan grabbed her.

It might not seem like a big deal, but it was for a four year old. These girls don't know how lucky they are to have a big brother who looks out for them like this. Ethan loves his sisters so much and I pitty any boy who ever breaks their hearts!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

My Dad

I realize that not every girl has a dad like mine. I never realized how lucky I was when I was little. Dad would sometimes take a day off work and take me (and only me) out for a day long date. We called it Veronna day. He would also do this for each kid in the family. Dad has always had a gift for making all seven of us feel like we are his favorite. Who ever he is talking with at the time feels special and loved, as if they are the only one. I know that not every girl has a dad like this. But I sure wish they did because every girl deserves one.

When I was a kid I loved the movie "Annie" and I still do to this day. When Dad would come home from work he and I would have our own time together. We would lie on the bed and sing "The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow". I don't know why I loved that song so much but I did. And I don't know why such a manly guy like Dad would happily sing the song over and over with me, but he did.

Even now as an adult I feel like I'm his favorite. But I know in reality he has seven favorites. He's good at making us each feel like we are the center of the universe when we need that attention. I've been having a hard time with life lately. I've been feeling the weight of the wolrd on my shoulders as I sit back and think about the economy, the evils lurking around every corner, what kind of job I'm doing raising my kids, trying to be everything to every body, etc.

Today, out of nowhere in the mail I got a letter from Dad. Hand written and everything, in his crazy cursive handwriting that has always been uniquely his own. As I began reading it, tears began streaming down my face. It was simply a letter of encouragement. How did he know that today, of all days and of all times, I needed to hear those words? How did he know exactly what to say to soothe my tender heart? He has a way of making things okay and putting things into perspective.

Ethan saw me crying and gave me a hug and said "It's okay Mom, I'm here. It's okay." I couldn't help but laugh through my tears. I then explained to him that sometimes people cry when they are happy, not just sad. Those were happy tears. I am so blessed to have not one, but two incredible parents who have taught me and love me and would sacrifice almost anything for me. I owe so much to them and I'll never be able to thank them enough. My heart is full.

FHE Halloween Cupcakes

Last night after our FHE lesson we decorated Halloween cupcakes. So fun and so yummy!

Monday, October 13, 2008

First Snowfall

Didn't we just get past winter? It snowed into June and here we go again. We woke up yesterday morning to everything covered in white. As soon as we got home from church, Lauren went down for a nap and the other two grabbed their coats and headed outside. I didn't want to tarnish their excitement, but are we in for a long winter or what???

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Happy Birthday, Cody!

Happy 35th to Cody! Friday was his birthday and we had a small celebration as a family. The kids picked out some presents for him which turned out to be Swedish Fish, Kit Kats, a 20 case of Coke, and a movie. After having pizza and opening presents, we headed over to Lance and Courtnee's to have cake. I made the traditional berry cake that Cody asks for every year. It is soooo yummy! Then Ethan stayed the night at their house and had a blast. Happy birthday Daddy. We love you!!!
We did not have any 3 or 5 candles so we decided to use a 2 and a 1. Cody was fine with being 21 this year!

The Marble Jar

We decided to start teaching the kids about money and how to earn it. But instead of teaching the concept right off with real money, we started a marble jar. Every time they do something good or helpful they get to add a marble to the jar (earn money). When they do something bad, a marble gets taken out of the jar (pay a fine). When the jar is full they get to pick out a toy at the store. On Friday morning the jar was full, something which has taken over a month to accomplish. Ethan picked out two new Transformers and Hailey got a new Barbie. We will do one more round of marbles and then switch to coins. This new incentive program has been cause for some good behavior!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Bad Exercises, Bad!

Yesterday afternoon Hailey and Kaden were playing in the basement when we heard a blood curdling scream. Apparently Hailey had been playing with my "exercises" (as she calls my dumbells that I keep next to the elliptical). She dropped one of the ten pounders on her right foot. That made for a terrible ending to a great day.

She screamed for over an hour and we debated about taking her into the ER. We watched it and she calmed down so we thought it would be okay. It immediately began to swell and turn purple, but she could still move it so we thought it wasn't broken. By tonight she was in serious pain and her entire big toe was bright purple and blood began seeping out around the toe nail. So I decided to take her to instacare where they did an x-ray.

Poor Hailey had been so brave up to that point. She even took a rock that she had gotten at Antelope Island to show the doctor. The nurse and doctor fell in love with her. She finally began crying when I had to sit her on the x-ray table. Turns out is wasn't broken, but she had a severe hematoma under the nail. So the doctor drilled a hole through the nail and blood began spurting out. Hailey screamed and clung to me for dear life.

She wrapped it up and said the swelling went down instantly. Hailey looked at the picture of her toe and said "Look, that is where the exercises hurt my foot!" She got a sucker, a milk shake, and a copy of her x-ray as a reward. Way to go Hailey girl. You were so brave!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Antelope Island

On Friday we decided to go exploring. When you live in a city, it's very rare to get out and do the touristy stuff because life gets in the way. But we decided to load up and head out to Antelope Island with Grandma and Papa. It was the perfect getaway. It took about 45 minutes to get there and back and was only $9 for our carload.

It seemed surreal as we drove across the straight that took us to the island. We were the only car on the road and it was a gorgeous drive! It stretched on forever. When we got there we saw buffalo and antelope and some pretty cool birds. After exploring the visitor center we drove out to see the ranch and along the way we saw so many buffalo up close and personal. It was a really neat experience! One of these days we need to go back out there and hike around the lake because there is a lot to see.