Tuesday, November 23, 2010

day four: the simple things

I love having the opportunity to get dinner together every night for my family. I love being able to go to the fridge and open it and there in front of me is a whole array of healthy cold food that I can put together for my family.  I love being able to pull out one of a hundred pans/dishes to cook and put our food on and if I want to I can make my table as fancy or undecorated as I want.  I can fill our cups with fresh pure water and refill them as many times as I need to, and as I sit around the table with my sweet family, I can feel safe and warm with a big, undripping roof over my head. And this is just putting together dinner. I could come up with a thousand circumstances everyday in which I am thankful for the simple things in my life..the ones often  overlooked and forgotten about, until you read, hear about, or experience the ones who go without.  The Lord has truly blessed us with so many simple things and for that, I am thankful.

Monday, November 22, 2010

day three: my peeps.

Have you ever thought that if words could describe you, which ones would follow you around?  I put only one above each of their heads, though many would be there...

Among the MANY things my family teaches me:
service, patience, hardwork, selflessness, empathy, sense of humor, drive, ambition, passion, faith, miracles still exist, opinionated, friendly, positive, smile through everything, love deeply, helpful, focused, happy, and calm.

I'd say my peeps are taking care of me. And I will always love them for it.

Friday, November 19, 2010

day two: why him, of course

So of course I cannot do a thankful week, without including him. All my life I dreamed of who my husband would be. How he would treat me and my children. What a good provider he would be. What a hard worker he was. How he served those around him. How he cared deeply for the world and how people lived upon it. How he would always be a good example for our children of faith, patience, love, forgiveness and trust. I really did dream of all these things.

I will never take for granted that I was blessed with him.  He has exceeded all of my dreams and more.
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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Day one: being taught

Every moment that I look at my children I feel thankful to be a mom and feel grateful for the experiences I've had to get me here.  Bear with me as I tell a quick story.

After high school I had to choose between going to SCAD or to BYU. There were many things that led to my decision, but ultimately after going to Savannah and seeing the awesome facilities, history and art coming out of there, I felt strongly that I should be there. So I went.  I enjoyed everything about the school..I played volleyball for them and had incredible experiences doing that, and just learned so much. I grew as an artist and a person.  My number one goal was to come out of school and get a job designing logos and ads for large companies, including Nike.  It was my dream to be successful and knew I could because I could put the time and effort in to being that good.   My third year in I started to get a feeling that I needed to go to BYU. I questioned why over and over again, but while playing in a tournament one weekend, I dove for a ball, and a teammate dove at the same time and we collided at my elbow. It broke. How do you brake an elbow? I don't really know, but I was in pain for a long time (read months and months) because of it.  I broke my right arm and am right handed so it would have been nearly impossible to finish the semester of designing, drawing and painting with my left hand.  Through this and other experiences I transferred to BYU.

Fast forward to the next semester, I was at BYU and applied for the graphic design program and was quickly DENIED. The only word I can use to describe this time was shock. After getting over the disappointment and anger, I prayed to Heavenly Father to know what he wanted me to do.  He told me to go on a mission.

8 months later you could find me in Alberta, Canada in a small town named Red Deer.  We were working with a family whose mother had been meeting with the missionaries on and off for 15 years. She had many things that didn't allow her to yet join the Church, but we also started teaching her children as we were there. One day her 16 year old son broke down crying, telling us he would have to drop out of high school because of what was happening in his life. He told us he was up every morning at 5:30 to wake up his 15 year old brother for school, 6:30 to pack a lunch and get his 6 year old brother off to school, and then watched his 18 month old brother the rest of the day...and then did the cleaning and cooking on top of it all. While he was crying and telling us, the Spirit whispered to me and let me know that my number one priority in this life was to be a mother. I went home that night and wrote down how I felt, what the Lord had told me, and made a promise to make that  happen.

A few years later I was back at BYU with a new resolve. I knew I didn't need to work for large companies, or be successful in the world's eyes. I had a new goal, and knew I had a lot to learn before motherhood which I knew wouldn't be too far off. I applied to the illustration program soon after and quickly got ACCEPTED with the same portfolio I had used a few years earlier. Looking back at these experiences have taught me quite a few things. First, that the Lord leads and guides our lives as we are willing to let Him do so.  He knew what my priorities were at first, and knew that lasting happiness wouldn't come for me through that. He knew what one of my big purposes was here on Earth, and wanted me to remember, and as I let Him guide me, I came to know of them too.  Second, I know that Heavenly Father knows and loves each of His children. I have heard over and over again, people doubting that God really cares or that He really knows what we do. Over and over agian, I am reminded how much He does. That is comforting to know and feel.  And in this circumstance, I am so grateful He let ME know and come to gain a knowledge of my role as a mother and how important it truly is.

I mean, really, who wouldn't be happy waking up in your office everyday, (as it IS open 365 days a year, 24 hours a day) and seeing my cute clients who need so much from you. It is exhausting and exhilarating at the same time, but wouldn't trade it for any amount of "success" in the world's eyes. They are what make my job the best in the world:

So thankful today for being taught from on high and here at home.
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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

he knows chinese?

Ha! I'm laughing even before I tell this story. Ben took the boys out on a hike the other morning.  They had been going for a few hours when they came upon a hill and Lincoln started singing, "Sube, Sube, Sube."..(now don't laugh..That's how you SAY "up" as in "go up the hill" in spanish..at least that is how Diego says it!):)  SO they got to the top of the hill and Booker says, "Hey dad, I know how to say down in Chinese!"..I think Ben was pretty impressed for a second. And then Booker continued with a song, "Gubay, Gubay, Gubay!" Ben couldn't stop laughing and as soon as he got home, told us the story.  I guess it explains his chicken scratching that I saw on his homework one day..I asked him what it was..and totally serious he responded, "Oh mom, I wrote all my homework in Chinese!". WOW.

In other news..My new Christmas cards are up in my etsy shop. Go check them out..and let me know which are your favorites!:)

Friday, November 5, 2010

something free!

Head on over to kiki CREATES for a free thanksgiving print download!
I'm only giving it away for ONE week, then it will be normal priced in my shop.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

november, yay!

I don't know why I find November to be so refreshing to me. Maybe because it is "fall" here in Southern Nevada.  Maybe because Halloween is over and all the craziness that goes with it. Maybe its the upcoming holidays which equals lots of family and memories. Whatever it is I am so thankful it is here!

Last year I did an "I am thankful month".  It seemed like each day I wrote about something, 10 more things came to mind that I was thankful for. I loved the experience of doing it, so I decided to do it in a new form this year. Thursday, November 18-Thursday, November 25  I will be doing "Thankful week".  Last year I had a few people ask me for the graphic I used..If you'd like to join me..even for a few days that week..or any other..feel free to go on ahead and use this. 

(click on it, then right click and save it!)

Hope your month is shaping up to be fabulous!
Can't wait to share some of the fun things I have been working on.:)