Wednesday, April 12, 2017


I have been getting glimpses of the mom I want to be peeking out of her hiding place. The mom who had spur-of-the moment dance parties, or the mom who plays with her kids and genuinely has fun doing it. The mom who is silly and can make her kids laugh.

I've been praying for help in this part of motherhood. I know it's in me, I'm a fun person, who likes playing pretend, and doing things that most kids like doing (play dough, coloring, dancing). But I've not really been able to let go and enjoy motherhood for a really long time. It feels so good to have fun with my kids. It feels so good to see their smile because I'm doing something with them that makes them smile. I'm grateful for grace, the Savior is making me more than I am, and renewing parts of me that have been hiding for a long time.

Keeping it real: bedtime

Last night it took us 4 hours to get the kids to sleep! One or both of us were constantly working on getting the kids to sleep! We are trying to keep the two older kids in the same room. We've tried this on and off their whole lives and never consistently kept it up. (We are still wondering why we feel like this is a good idea). This week we've tried to just sit with them in the room without a night light till they fall asleep. Some nights it quirks well, last night it didn't matter what we did they just got crazy and disobedient.

Here's to that being the worst bedtime, and not taking that long tonight.

Update: bedtime was awesome tonight! Blessings!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Keeping it real: what makes us happy

Jonathan and I talked the other day about activities that bring us happiness. Honestly, it took me as little while to find things that I could do with the kids on a regular basis that bring me joy.

We talked about things that Jonathan could do to fill his bucket. Things that he could do by himself. (He often serves till he drops...) that was even harder! I'm not sure if we found any thing that he wanted to do.

So this is real life: we have lost a small (but very important) part of our lives. Here's to changing that.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

It's Undeniable

Heavenly Father is in the details of my life. He cares deeply, and is making Himself manifest in so many areas of my life.

He has been in every step of our journey, and we have really noticed it in the last few months. I don't want to make this post too long, so I'm going to bullet point a few things:

  • Jonathan got an internship with General Mills last summer, the company that he thought he wanted to work for ever since he started in Food Science. 
  • As we were there we thought we were going to end up there (I was looking at schools, housing, wards... the whole bit). But then we found out about a position opening up at BYU. Academia was never part of the plan, or on our radar. As we prayed about staying at General Mills, each one of us independently felt like we needed to try for BYU.
  • When we came back home to Indiana, and made it a serious matter of prayer and thought about how that would happen logistically. We were a little nervous to turn down a great opportunity for the hope of something coming into fruition later. 
  • As Jonathan thought about it, he knew he didn't want to continue down the current research path he was on, but didn't know what else would be interesting enough to make a career out of. As he prayed about it, thoughts and inspiration came flooding to his mind, thoughts of research topics that he hadn't thought about before. 
  • If he wanted to switch research fields, then the need for a post-doc was essential. But graduating in May and potentially starting in August didn't leave much time. Then the thought came to try to defend his dissertation as early as possible and get a short term post-doc. 
  • As he looked into post-doc positions at other schools, he felt like he should ask a recently hired Purdue faculty (doing research in the field he was interested in) for recommendations of good places to apply, and if doing a flexible post-doc was even an option. She basically offered him a position on the spot.
  • Jonathan got an interview with BYU, even though there were many qualified candidates that applied (we were told by a few BYU faculty).
  • He felt good about how the interview went. 
  • Fast-forward to February 2017. I was due with Aveya on the 23, Jonathan originally planned to defend in the middle of the month, but some of his committee members couldn't make it, so they rescheduled for February 21! That turned out to be a blessing, because Aveya came on the 13. I was recovered enough to go to his defense (something I REALLY wanted to do).
  • There were some amazing miracles and tender mercies associated with Aveya's birth. Things ranging from saying a silent prayer on Saturday night (Feb 11), just complaining a bit... "I really don't want to deal with being pregnant and this hip pain for another two weeks. If it's not going to be too crazy for Jonathan, can I have this baby early?" then starting contractions within minutes of that prayer... to being able to teach gospel doctrine by myself through my contractions, to all the help I had through my slow c-section recovery, to my kids not being jealous of Aveya... to the miracles of modern medicine, that although Aveya was sideways, she was born healthy and safely, and I was safe as well. 
  • We have been struggling with this 2 year long phase Cambria has been in. She's been so defiant, and hard to parent (to not delve into too many things). I've really struggled with controlling my temper and trying to find ways to get through to her. Any parenting strategy that we have tried seemed to not work. But we got so many answers during General Conference (people keep telling us that we need to be more firm, but as I try that, I find it puts me in a bad place, and it isn't effective. But I felt overwhelmed by all the talks about treating people with love. Love is always the answer). We also started reading a parenting book that has been really awesome! As we have applied the little that we've read, it seems to be working! And it's in line with the things we heard and felt in General Conference!
  • I have gotten into a motherhood rut, but with some sincere begging in prayer, I have had a few wonderful moments with each kid. I've had better days this week than I've had in a very long time. The enabling power of the atonement is real! And that's a miracle! 
As we wait to hear back from BYU (we won't hear back till May at the earliest), sometimes I get impatient, ok, most times. But after this weekend, and realigning my perspective, I know that it will turn out the way that it's supposed to. Heavenly Father has a plan, and he has been guiding us in undeniable ways.