Wednesday, December 23, 2009

This is what my Christmas wish looks like.

My husband; the graduate. And we're together at last.
With cards games, a lit tree, and sparkling cider.
Merry, bright. Not so white.
Just perfect.

Wishing you the holly-jolliest.

I can't wait to blog hop next week, smiling along with the happy people in your Christmas photos.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A richly dressed tree

I have always had a certain fondness for very trendy and intentionally designed trees like this one.

But I am changing. There really is nothing so wonderful as a tree that is full of hand-made loveliness from years past, and special, gift ornaments that bring back floods of memories.
I've taken down the sleek, white lights that lined my ideal Christmas and replaced them with a clashing mix of the brightest strings of color.

Having kids has changed the way I see the world, I'm sure even in ways that I haven't realized.

Breakable ornaments go on the top. Candy-canes will all disappear before a week has gone by.

What does your ideal Christmas look like?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Super Mom

I've been accused of strategically hiding my belly in blog pictures. Perhaps it was subconscious, but I am now intent on wearing my baby loud and proud.

So here, for your enjoyment, is a little video I just helped my sister, Tamsin, make for a class project...

This is slightly embarrassing because

1. My little sister is showing this to an entire classroom of sophomores at her high school.

2. The teacher of the class was my English teacher almost 8 years ago.

But I think that Tamsin's dance scene (3 minutes and 45 seconds into the video) tops all in the hilariously embarrassing department. Plus, it's refreshing to be able to laugh at my self.

Would you just love to know your mother did stuff like this while she was pregnant with you?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Our new home

Each morning I awake, sit on my very own couch (which was recently freed from underneath a million boxes in a freezing storage unit) and munch a tray of ice (which, yes, I know, is bad for my teeth).
While I savor the cold crunchiness I stare at the cutest door that hangs crooked in its frame. I walk under a lovely pointed-archway to refill and reposition my ice-tray.
I dance my way around my new kitchen as I prepare breakfast for my sleeping critters.
The details, modern and vintage, make me smile.
This is home.

And it's finally perfect now that we have the internet.

Back in blogging business!

Through the monitor

Through the monitor each night I hear a squeaky, rhythmic thumb-sucking.
And an occasional growl to scare away any scary monsters.
Sometimes the silence is broken with indignant whining over stolen blankets or snuggle-toys.
But usually I awake to the sound of mischievous laughter from two partners in crime.
I giggle along. Then I think to myself that I can't wait until morning so I can join their grand adventures.
I lay in my bed listening, and I wish that their father could be at my side, laughing and scheming along with me.

He comes home, for keeps, on Sunday, after 15 long weeks. I feel like a giddy teenager at the prospect of a first kiss.

Who could ask for anything more?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanks and thoughts

A highlight of our week together was a chance to house-sit for our dear friends and spend some quality time with our little family. We owe them immensely for the use of their snuggle-couches and home theater (plus we finished half of their candy bowl).
(Duke and I, in love)

(Iggy running away from me as fast as he can, ignoring my call)

"I, the Lord your God, am not displeased with your coming on this journey, notwithstanding your follies." (Doctrine and Covenants 111:1)

What a comfort unfolded itself to me through these words! I keep thinking about all the things that I'm goofing up these days, which makes me doubt the decisions that led our family here.

(Iggy on time-out; a common occurrence)

Disciplining a 17 month old stinks. I keep trying things that don't seem to be working, plus my parenting right now is so public and dysfunctional (living in my parents house with my husband gone). I chased him up and down the isles of church 8 or 9 times today, put him on my lap and let him scream out a tantrum, right there in the second row. I don't like to take him to the halls and let him goof around when he's misbehaving... but then, how many people does my parenting have to disturb? So many self-doubts come when kids are born.

(Me in a moment of total pregnant-parenting desperation)

Note: I hated the above picture when I first saw it, but now I think it's sort-of a treasure. A piece of history, of my current climb. Proof, for later, that I can do hard things.

Although we may run across wrinkles in our maps, the path we originally chose and charted is usually still suitable. Once we iron the creases we can continue.

(He is worth it)

And I am happy on this journey we've chosen.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

so glad

We waited patiently. And daddy came home to us. Oh, how we need that man.
The boys loved watching the airplanes and guessing which was daddy's.
And as soon as they saw him the ten weeks he was gone melted away.
He flew back out to school this morning, but I know I can make it now. His visit was heaven-sent and revitalizing.

More on our lovely week to come. :)

mom bloopers

Does anyone else give their kids chocolate-glaze donuts in the car... right after a bath... on the morning of a busy day full of errand-running?
Note-to-self... STICKY MESS.

Anyone else been making their own life interesting lately?

Monday, November 16, 2009

heaven and hell

Would you rather... encounter a moment of personal, spiritual doubt or pass a kidney stone?
Would you wish to rediscover a part of you that you'd lost or eat your weight in chocolate ice-cream?

All of the above? Welcome to the last 4 days of my life.

1. Tillamook mudslide. It's my grandpa's favorite, so he always keeps it in stock and since the boys and I spent the weekend house-sitting for him, I just couldn't help myself.

2. Last week I spent a night in the hospital with extreme pain in my kidneys. My doctor sent me home with a bottle of pain-killers and a flimsy diagnosis; the baby was laying on something and causing me pain. Um. No. I passed a kidney stone a week later. When people ask, "are your pregnancies hard?" I don't know how to answer. You know how people who have an immunodeficiency actually end up dying from simple colds and things? Well, this pregnancy feels just like that.... like the heading for a handful of subcategory funks.

3. I read a book. It was masterfully organized, and an insightful commentary on the tendencies of people of faith. It shook me in a very scary way. The 19th wife by David Ebershoff is a novel, and though it is written in the form of an exposé, its facts were fabricated to illustrate a different type of truth. I do not recommend the book, unless you are willing to devote your self to a historical study thereafter, because you may find yourself spouting fiction as fact (his words are that powerful). After researching the issue of Polygamy in the LDS church's history, I feel confident in the position of the church today on this matter, and I have pondered the reasons it may have been introduced and then taken away from the church's belief system, though I do not understand completely. My faith that Christ is indeed at the head of this church has been increased through my study. But it was a bumpy weekend, spent in large part on my knees.

4. I've found the long-dormant spunk I've missed so much. I'd like to say I've got some shenanigans on the agenda, but in truth I've only found the spunk, I've not yet become ready to unleash it. The good news is this; the vibrant me is not deceased, like I had supposed, but is merely hibernating.

My friends, I hope that you're experiencing the ups in your lives to balance the inevitable downs. I hope that your faith in your self, in your own capacity to endure, is ever growing.

Duke, thank you for our long phone conversations, while I talked myself through the weekend. To sacrifice so much time, I know, is not easy. Thank you. I love you. See you in FIVE DAYS.

PS- This morning I literally awoke to a giant hug and kiss from Sparky. Then a smile I wish I could bottle up for a rainy day. My babies give me strength.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

sustaining daydreams

I asked Duke where he would like to be right now and he gave me two sustaining daydreams for my collection:
1. We're on a Hawaiian beach at sunset, after having played and surfed all day, and we are exhausted but kissing like crazy. And he said he wouldn't even object to getting sand all over. That's a big deal since he hates being sandy slightly more than having over-lotioned-hands and only slightly less than being covered in glitter (which he refers to as "the herpes of craft supplies").

2. We are snuggling on a sofa with our three boys, watching waves from a beach-house window on the Oregon cost. And we have hot chocolate. Heaven.

In both the fantasies I am no longer pregnant (hallelujah).

Five more dreams that make me so happy I could pop:
2. Saturday morning dog-piles with daddy home.
3. A new, classy wardrobe.
4. Compiling a new "live list" that includes some of the things we never did.
5. Taking the boys to Salem's Konditorei and splurging on a favorite piece of cake for each of us.

Ooooo, you should share a quick daydream that gets you through the day! I would love that!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The desire and the calling

I miss teaching. I miss being a part of something bigger than myself.

I know that the opportunities to serve are still around me, but they aren't flocking to me the way they did when I was attending school at Brigham Young University- Idaho just months ago.
In the 3 years I spent there I was assigned to be a teacher, a counselor, a committee member, a service leader and all sorts of other callings in my church. I always felt needed.

It has been humbling to see the world keep turning with out me.

Last night I spoke at an event honoring young women, including my little sister, for their accomplishments in a program called "personal progress" (which is a lot like the boy scout program for young men). My heart pumped with enthusiasm for virtuous living as I looked out over their faces and wished success for them.

A beautiful night. I needed to help more than they needed my help.

Why do I keep waiting to be asked before I make any effort to help anyone?

Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work. (D&C 4:3)

I swear, I am always relearning things I already sort-of knew.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

a holy place

I'm having trouble finding the words.

A slight breeze caused a ripple over this reflecting pool.
The sky darkened, and a mist of Oregon rain fell about, but the grounds were beautifully lit.
Almost four years ago I stood with my husband atop these steps and danced in the newness of our marriage.
Visiting the temple feels like going home.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

That was a good day.

Stated simply, I have not been posting because I do not feel, lately, that I could inspire, uplift, or entertain anyone. I've been alive, but not living.

A documentation of the last few weeks would have included numerous pictures of me in sweat pants with greasy hair, and if I had posted them in order you could have been watching my rear get bigger and bigger.

Thank you, piggy flu, for bringing me down. Goodbye now, and don't come back.

Pardon me while I inspire myself back into action by posting these happy photos of a happy day with my happy family.
Art gallery viewing. Then to the park.
All of us together. I did my hair that day.
Sparky did a face-plant in the mud and we all laughed.
The following quote has inspired me in times past, and is fueling my flight now.

"The more one does and sees and feels, the more one is able to do, and the more genuine may be one's appreciation of fundamental things like home, and love, and understanding companionship." -Amelia Earhart

You must live, live, live, Megan Marie. Health is a blessing you mustn't waste. Right? Right.

Cheers to a happy halloween.

We love you, daddy. Thanks for spending your halloween doing homework and grading papers. We know you are working hard for us.

Thanksgiving will be here before you know it.

xoxo, your Megan

Thursday, October 22, 2009

A few autumn photos for you to drink in like hot cider

Come visit me and I'll take you to this park. The photos do little to convey the glory. You'll have to imagine the crisp air and sounds of migrating birds.
I'm convinced there is something very special to be discovered in any climate and terrain. There are limitless treasures in this world, this I know. It just happens to be incredibly simple to find beauty here.

I just had to share a bit of it. Happy fall. Enjoy it before it gives way to its frosty friend.