On Thursday I was, and every day I am, thankful for:
Little boys. I just love 'em. I love thoughtful sensitive boys...
daredevil, rough-and-tumble boys...
and healthy, cooperative mischief-making.
I am thankful for cousins that Eve likes better than me:
I am thankful for food, and lots of it!
I am thankful for chaos. (Actually, not really. But I try to be, since it is my life...)
I am thankful for my family, altogether. Nothing else matters - not pie, not politics, not Black Friday, not "cocktail attire". Here's to the holidays, and all the little important stuff.
On Thursday I was, and every day I am, thankful for:
Funny tidbits from my kids this week...
Uncle David, reading from a trivia card: Who is the prophet of our church?
Devlin: Barack Obama!
Devlin: Mom, what's that book?
Me: It's a book to help me learn how to be nicer to you and Eve, so our family can be happier.
(oh, maybe an hour later...)
Devlin: Mom, did you forget to read your book?
Devlin: Mom, look what I made at kindergarten today! (indicates pilgrim hat, complete with buckle, and Puritan vest-type garment made of construction paper).
Eve: Wook, a AT! Wi a BAND AID on!
(Devlin furrows brow, scowls).
Eve: An a BIB! Mom, wook!
Devlin: It's a vest.
Etc etc etc. Trust me, it was funny.
Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and there are going to be a lot of people at the Dixon dinner so more mayhem is sure to come. Mayhem with pie, which is surely the best kind of mayhem there is.
at photographing all three kids - unassisted! As expected, I got lots of pictures of 2 people smiling and the third either:
a) picking his or her nose
b) "fixing" the baby's hat
c) blinking dramatically
d) eating dirt
But I did get a few keepers. Leave a comment and vote for your favorite!
(Also, I think I am going to change my template yet again, because I love the butterfly at the top but the rest of it isn't ringing my bell. Here we go again!)
Lest you think I am always an uptight, controlling, raging ball of stressed-out, allow me to present my Veteran's Day.
Parade in uptown Phoenix, city of 1 million people? Street closures aplenty? Hellish parking situation (or lack of parking, as it were)? 3 kids? No naps?
Piece of cake.
We actually had a great time, no "incidents" of any kind! I was amazed. Eve even watched the service dog float go past at close range without so much as a whimper (this is a *major* achievement).
I also successfully navigated my first in-transit potty emergency on the way home. I had taken Eve potty at every possible opportunity all morning, but nevertheless I looked in my rear view mirror 3 miles away from the parade route and saw The Face. Yes, that one. The one that says "this definitely can't wait 20 more miles". I started searching the horizon for a gas station, but none appeared. Her eyebrows were arching higher and higher, lip quivering, eyes turning yellow. She shouted "POTTY!" once more and I knew our time was up.
I turned right on the next street, into the scenic Encanto historic district, trying to decide on which door to knock and beg their indulgence.
Then I looked down at my cupholder. A pretty good size styrofoam cup, only half full of Diet Coke, complete with lid. Perfect! We pulled over, de-pantsed (well, Eve did) and didn't spill a drop! The hardest part was remembering not to drink it the rest of the way home.
So yesterday was Iris's blessing day.
I woke up early, hoping to have everyone ready in a timely fashion so the morning wasn't spent frantically rushing around, stuffing people into church clothes and hissing "hurry up! we're going to be late!" I wanted the hours before sacrament meeting to be peaceful and calm, so we could all feel the spirit of such an important day. So David could clear his mind and be receptive to the words that would come to him as he blessed the baby. So I could enjoy the moment.
It didn't quite work out that way.
As inevitably happens, so matter how I plan and scheme, I ended doing my makeup with Iris asleep in the sling, leaving my right arm, John McCain style, with just under 90 degrees of movement. I rushed to get Eve's pigtails done and pulled her hair and made her cry. She balled up a fist and whacked her brother and made me cry. The baby finally fell asleep 10 minutes before we had to leave and woke up, disgruntled and wailing, when we put her in the car. We got to church 15 minutes early all right, but by that time I was so tense I couldn't enjoy the presence of my friends and family who had gathered to support us.
I worried that Iris would scream through the blessing and no one would hear it.
I worried that the grandmothers would feel left out of the traditional "pass the baby down the row" post-blessing ritual if I wasn't able to indulge them.
I worried that I had neglected to plan a luncheon or reception for our guests.
I worried that there would be an epic poop explosion all over the pristine heirloom blessing dress.
I worried that I was warping my kids for life by bringing so much stress into our home.
I worried that I had bitten off more than I could chew with 3 children.
I worried that I would never be able to learn the calm demeanor and gentle voice I admire so much in more experienced mothers.
I worried I was ruining the day for everyone else by worrying so much.
I worried that my own sweet, happy life was passing me by while I worried about all the little things that didn't matter.
As I speedwalked up to the stand, fighting back tears, to play the organ (yes, I was the organist that week too - yes, I had totally forgotten), I was so angry I could hardly see the music. Why am I like this? Why is it so hard for me? Why can't I just relax and lower my standards? Why do things have to be perfect? Why can't I be more like my mom? My mother-in-law? My husband? My neighbor?
David came running in from the changing room with the baby (there had actually been an epic poop explosion, although the dress was spared) when the bishop announced the blessing of Iris Dixon and walked straight up to the front of the chapel, game face on. She was wailing, as I had feared, but when the wonderful men in the circle laid their hands on her and she heard her daddy's voice, she stopped and everything was still. She was blessed to be a comfort and a calming influence on our family and our home, and my soul was quieted.
There must be a reason these children are here - with me, short temper and all. I know it, and with every new member of our family I learn more about myself, I love my husband more deeply, I am more grateful for everything I have and more reliant on the hand of the Lord.
We were reading last night, and I was given again a reminder. As Nephi is taken by an angel and shown the vision of the Tree of Life, he is asked "Knowest thou the condescension of God?" Nephi answers, as I have so many, many times and doubtless will until my time here is done:
"I know that he loveth his children; nevertheless, I do not know the meaning of all things".
I don't have to know it all. I don't have to do it all. No one else knows it all either, no matter what we see on the surface. It's enough, today, to be still and present and cling to the knowledge that we are loved.
With that, I present an imperfect picture of a beautiful, beautiful day.
I think this one might be a keeper, after trying at least 10 different templates this weekend.
Well, I'm experimenting so hang with me. You'll want to check back often because this is most definitely not set in stone and it will probably look different every time you visit for awhile. :) Feedback always appreciated!
of my stupid ugly snoozetastic black background here. Help me out! I want something beautiful and colorful and modern. And free - free would be nice but it doesn't have to be. How would you even go about paying for something like this?
Anyway, comment here and point me in the right direction. My blog is too good for this Blogger Basic nonsense! ;)
I don't even know where to start - so much has happened since last time I posted.
David and I had the great honor to sing at Shane Figueroa's funeral on Saturday. It was an amazing experience, and I am so grateful to know that his sweet wife and daughter are supported by so many good people. The police brother- and sisterhood is really remarkable.
And on Saturday, immediately upon arriving home from the funeral, we learned the sad news that Jeff McBride, another young father in our ward, had lost his second battle with cancer that same afternoon. So we will be attending another funeral this weekend, and praying for another widow and her two children, so close in age to my first two. It makes life seem so fragile and fleeting, and I am unspeakably grateful for my family, the time that we have together here, and the time that I know we will have together again beyond the veil of heaven.
In the middle of all this, of course, there was a visit with my awesome sister and her husband, and Halloween festivities to spare. I managed not to get a single photo with Emily, but she has lots of good ones on her blog so please go take a peek! She learned to crochet during her recent run of My Fair Lady at the Pioneer Theater in SLC and she spent hours backstage making a big squishy blanket and hat for Iris. She surprised me and brought them over while I was folding laundry so I very understandably did not have my camera. She's got unmissable pics, though, of sleeping Iris modeling the little hat amidst the piles of underwear in my hallway!
David came home early on Friday to carve a pumpkin with the kids after I flatly said I would not do any pumpkin carving, seeing as I have neither interest nor talent in this area. The kids, of course, were over the moon:
Devlin was Wall-E and Eve was - well, Eve - in a singular, historic fit of crafty inspiration on my part:
I don't have a photo, but I did take all three kids with me to the poll and they helped me make history by electing Barack Obama as the new President-Elect! We did get stickers and free donuts at Krispy Kreme, which I suppose is cooler than a photo in any case. If you feel like getting your politick on, check out my thoughts here on my other blog, PoliticaLDS.
Now 6 weeks old, and if I put her in front of the window her hair looks kind of red, right? Is that cheating?
There is nothing to make a person feel better about all the injustice in this sad world like tiny little baby smiles:
Good night, God bless.