Tuesday, October 30, 2012

early snow

last week the wasatch mountains were thrust into a week long winter fury. school closures because of the snow. it was three mornings waking up to falling snow.  because we are nestled right against a beautiful canyon, it seems our snow count is a little higher. we can be fully immersed into what seems to be a total white out, yet driving a few minutes down the road the clouds are thin and the snow is light. so, in our little world, it seemed like january's storm like weather was thrust upon us.

this early snow was all the talk.  all over the local radio, news, and newspaper.  it was the ticker at the bottom of the screen on three days worth of newscasts, and the first item of conversation exchanged between friends and neighbors.  there may have been in years past, a light snow or some cold weather before the great day of candy giving and gathering, but nothing like this that i can remember.

soon, my winter packing and de-junking was on display with no warning.  snowballs had to be thrown and igloos had to be assembled.  the routine of boot fittings, glove fetching, hat finding, and sledding took shape.  we made due with boots too small, gloves not sufficient, and scarves not warm enough.  it happened so fast that i felt like i didn't have time to sufficiently send my kids out into the winter world. on one of the days of winter play i noticed that mismatched outer gear was making me feel insufficient but was lost on my kids.
they were immersed in the early snow.

on the third day of early snow, i started getting the "depths of winter" gloom, the "we've had soup three nights in a row" feeling, and it felt like the early snow was robbing me of something. i could only think of the things i wouldn't be able to do now if things kept up as they were.  we couldn't have our thanksgiving walk in weather like this, and what about our last picnic of the season where we watch "to kill a mockingbird", and it's no fun to be bundled like an eskimo on halloween, or where are my days of autumn sun and warmth and walks in the afternoon.  i started cursing the early snow. i had put up with early snow long enough.
i had a moment mid way thru this early snow.  it was one of those moments where the hustle of my life was quiet for just a moment, my heart was soft, and my ears were still.  i could hear this lesson, i could feel this idea, i could grasp this concept of early snow.  i thought about the significance of early snow.  in my life, i have had many times of this early snow.  something happened so significant that i simply wasn't ready for.  surely, god is in the early snow somehow.  even though boots were too small, gloves were mismatched, and coats were only covering 3/4 of their arms, we all pulled thru the early snow.  that early snow has been replaced this week with perfect autumn weather.  we stepped out yesterday to bask in the warm sun and leaves on the ground. we were able to resume our regular life.  the news no longer gravitating to the early snow, in fact, long forgotten for most and remembered by only a few - that news was clear last week after all.

for days after this lesson, i have immersed myself in the early snow so many times i have had in my life. it seems early snow will never leave and as though it has robbed you of something.  i am really grateful that god is in the early snow.  he's made it up by quickly replacing that snow for warm fall days that help me forget the desperation and only the joy of that sun on my skin.

yes.  that was what the early snow brought at this house.

Friday, October 19, 2012


yesterday that sweet sassafrass ella turned 6. 6! Where has the time gone so quickly? and today, my little baby boy turns 2. my goodness.

the other day I was having a moment. i was knee deep in laundry and somehow thoughts of how good our life is slowly took over.  it seems ironic that at this time they would do this.  the house was a disaster, laundry was behind, and the kids were being fussy. fussy at me, fussy with their jobs, fussy with food.  a perfectly normal day really.

i thought about how ella's birth and first few years really threw me for a spin. i have had to take some time to recover from the intensity and give myself some credit for getting thru it.  also, give myself credit for having another baby after her.  the thought suddenly rushed into my heart so overwhelmingly of how sad i would be without having rowan in our family.  his first year was rough, but once we were able to sort through all of his health issues and resolve them, he has turned into this glue for our family.  he is laid back, sweet, funny and so loving.  i think of what he has done for each of us in our family and i am overwhelmed with his solid purpose for us.  he has healed us.  ella has further developed this ability to nurture with him around.  she can take anything in need and throw herself completely into it, little row taught her how to do that.  he helped direct her abounding energy for life into good purposes.  he lets her love and dote on him all day, soaking in and needing everything she gives to him.  easton has finally found not only another male to add to his sometimes lonely cause, but also another ball lover.  these two boys could drive anyone to drink with their love of balls. both of my boys have very obsessive personalities when it comes to sports. who knows where it comes from. my favorite thing to see it both the boys on the couch watching a game together, or better yet, when we go to games together.  rowan will sit for an entire soccer game of easton's cheering "go EE" or "almost", or "tick ball". grayce has found a little puppet to command and lug around.  she is trying to teach him new things constantly, always making sure to give us the rundown and play by play of every strand of hair involved.

Rowan is love.  he has brought our family together in a way that heavenly father knew we needed. he has a way of making you feel so loved, and so important.  he is so much like easton was at his age, with grayce's looks down to the ears.  he is always keeping us laughing too.  the other day i was changing his diaper and he pointed to his nether region and whispered "my butt".  certainly the youngest child of 3 older siblings with their influences abounding:)

i love this baby. i love how he has healed our family and added to the completeness of us. happy birthday rowan - we love you!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

how he made it up to me

this weekend, with the riveting announcement at general conference about a new age limit for missionaries, i had a full circle moment.  the announcement was incredibly inspired and i was laughing at the press conference held afterwards when one reporter from the salt lake tribune asked jeffrey r. holland if they had thought about how this would impact sports across the state.  he was laughing right along with me.  sometimes we miss the big picture, she obviously did as she came back swinging from his laughter.

scott found himself in chicago for the week, gathering with neurosurgeons across the country, talking about important neurosurgeon things.  he was one of the few pa's and for sure the only one without a suit and tie.   we both laughed, conference was an excuse to be without a suit and tie for one weekend.  ah, well.  when i told him about the new age for missionaries, he confided to me that his biggest regret was that i was never able to serve. he said it was selfish for him to keep me from that mission i really wanted to serve.  his persuasive lips kept me from opening that chapter in my life, gladly i might add.

the truth be told, there was a day. six months before i fell for that good redhead, i hit that point where i felt it. i don't know if all mormons reach that cultivating moment in life before they get married or if it was unique to me.  but i found myself completely uninterested in my college course, bone dry in the dating department (that's what happens when you call off a wedding 10 days before the big day), and in the dreary rocky mountain winter months.  i was taking multiple institute classes, working full time and going to school.  whatever the have and have not's of this period, it led to a really wonderful experience for me.

my scripture study was so incredibly intense, and honestly, my heart was pretty broken and contrite after turning marriage away to a really great on paper guy.  i was in a very teachable moment in time.  looking to the future i wanted to see where i was going.  those sweet warm feelings of truth had always been present in my life but they seemed to be intensifying.  one night as my study of scripture in the new testament led me to feel that man jesus christ, i could feel that redeeming love.  i could feel a second of gethsemane and really knew it was an individual moment in time. i could feel that momentary despair of the empty tomb only to be filled immediately with the joy of that empty tomb declaring that he lives.  i could feel the truth and reality of every single thing that had ever been presented to me.  i came to know of the importance of organized religion and the restoration of christ's true church that he organized when he lived on the earth.  i could feel the wonder of the nephites as he descended and gathered and taught them as a resurrected being. it was so real and so tangible.  i knew and instantly i wanted to leave every present comfort and tell people everywhere.  more specifically a place that the lord would call me to.  it was something i didn't quite know what to do with.  instantly, i started saving money and figuring out how much it would cost to be gone for 18 months. i would be able to start mission papers in march.  this was around january/february.  the momentum was building inside of me and soon i was brave enough to tell a few people.  unfortunately, i was met with negative reaction from friends and family alike.  it really hampered my green light feeling.  interestingly, scott was the only one who was supportive. the only one.  and then, something about that friendship turning into something deeper.

i don't regret for one second marrying him instead of going on a mission.  i had a baby by the time i would have come home from a mission and i wouldn't trade her or the hair that put on my chest. as i talked to scott this weekend, he has really carried this guilt with him and i admit to filling with some envy for 19 year old mormon girls.  like maybe an hour of real wanting to turn the clock back.  we have always said we would work hard in our marriage to pay things off and serve a mission as soon as we could.  scott always promised to make that up to me.  i pondered how i would have been different if i would have served, what would i have gained.  and in one sweet moment, i knew how it was made it up to me.

when scott applied for his graduate program, he had all his schools picked out. every single one. and as an afterthought asked me if there was anywhere i would want to live in the country.  immediately i responded with connecticut.  that's where martha stewart lived after all and her infamy from her jail cell had my attention. i didn't even know where it was on a map but it sounded lovely and for sure i knew it was in new england.  he found that Yale was there and as a favor to me, applied. we both laughed about it and i thought how noble he was to apply to an ivy league school to appease his wife.  well, the rest of the story is known.  i pondered that experience of leaving every comfort i had and for the first time in my life, leaving the rocky mountains to live somewhere else. i had the chance to serve with and for good people, i learned how to get along with others because i made a lot of mistakes interacting with so many different types of people. i missed my family more than words can say and yet i learned how to live without family down the street. i learned how to be a wife and a mother.  i learned how to stand tall and how to ask for forgiveness.  i learned about the beauty of being unique in a religious setting. i learned about sacrifice and about that famous field being white and ready to harvest.  i learned how to love my brothers and sisters in and outside of the confines of our designated place of worship.  the lord made missing a chance to serve a mission as a nineteen year old up to me in those two years.  i gained insight into the atonement that i never would have had we never left our rocky mountains. it was a wonderful weekend and i love how he makes things up to us in his mercy and understanding.