Showing posts from September, 2009

Q&A: Child Spacing

Thank you all again for your thoughtful questions. I have seven more to answer, and I will try to get to at least one each week for the next little bit.

Today's question is from Katie:
What is the age difference in your kids, what's the easiest age span, the most difficult, and do you think those qualifications have more to do with months or with specific personalities?

When I was a freshman in high school, my older brother was a senior. We weren't close, but we were good to one another. One day, I was eating lunch with friends in a classroom when he appeared in the doorway, with tears in his eyes. My friends and the teacher in that room scattered, and I held my brother as tears ran down both our cheeks. He'd gotten the results of an important test, and they were devastating to him. He was worried about his future, and he turned for sympathy to his sister. At that moment, I realized the strength in the solid bonds of siblings.

The spacing between my kids is:


Boy, if I was ever tempted to feel like I really was all alone in this cold, cruel world, you all have crushed those feelings by your kind response to my last post! I wish I could reach out to all of you and thank you for your kind words. I'd love to have you all over for lunch at my house, potluck of course, because I'm not really feeling up to cooking much lately!

Lana, you made me laugh with your comment:

OH CHRISTINA!! I am so glad to hear you are normal. I thought for a moment that you were super woman sent here to this earth to show us how you do things so perfectly and positively =)

Let me assure you right now that if I'm super anything, it's super-normal! In fact, if you were to drop by right now, you'd see it for yourself, in the lingering smell of sour milk as we wash the towels we used to clean up the latest disaster -- a full gallon of milk fell to the floor yesterday and burst all over. You'd see it in the piles of projects I have not gotten to y…


So, by now most of you know I'm expecting, this time my eighth child. Reactions to the news have mostly been positive, but there have been a few negative comments and some raised eyebrows. Perhaps I'm just ultra-sensitive, ready to pick up on the least hint of negativity, or perhaps I'm just pregnant and emotional, but I've felt the hurt of it -- the feeling that others are rejecting this baby or judging me.

I've announced my pregnancy to some friends, expecting them to share my excitement and gotten instead shrugged shoulders and a change of subject. I guess I can understand it a bit; after all, I've done this before, so perhaps they think that for me, it's just become routine, like announcing we're buying a new car or going on a vacation, nothing too new or different or exciting.

But to me, this is something to be celebrated. It's exciting and wonderful and miraculous. This child is unique and special, and this is his chance to experience earth…

What I Believe -- My Foundation for Living, Part One

There are a lot of people reading my blog (I know because I spy on them via my Sitemeter). Most don't comment, but some do (thank you! It always makes me day when you do!). Some of my readers I know in real life and others are strangers to me. Still others are friends I just haven't met yet.

Some, like me, are members of my Church and the terminology and foundation for my life are understood. Many others are not LDS, but belong to other denominations. By and large, most are women of faith, and I have been so impressed with the wonderful women I have met through blogging.

I've been thinking about writing a post like this for a long time, explaining my beliefs. For one thing, Mormons aren't always well understood and sometimes assumptions are made that aren't accurate. For another, I'm always curious about what others believe, but sometimes I'm afraid to ask for fear of offending that person or showing my ignorance.

Finally, my faith forms the deepest p…

Weekend in Idaho (Nearly Wordless Wednesday)

We had a beautiful trip to Idaho last week. We stayed two nights in small cabins on Payette Lake with my parents, my sister's family and my brother's family.

I think genetics is a funny thing. My kids have always been on the small side. Harmony, for instance, at a year old, is only a little over 17 lbs. She's always been in the 3rd percentile for weight. Her cousin, Jonah, on the other hand . . .
is half her age and twice her size. (Well, not quite, but he is over twenty pounds at six months of age!)

And Jonah's older sister Sydney is not to be outdone. She's four months older than Eliza, and barely 3, but she's almost as tall as my five-year-olds.
Here's Allison, Sydney, and Eliza standing together:

The trip was great -- we fed cows at my parents house,

played and canoed in the lake (even though it was rather cold),

went on my dad's ATVs,
enjoyed a lovely hike,
gathered interesting bugs, rocks, and pinecones

and really enjoyed ourselves!

Exciting . . . (Wordless Wednesday)


First Impressions

"That's an ugly sculpture." I told my husband as we looked through the pictures he brought back from his trip to Chicago last spring. "It looks like a shiny bike helmet."

I was ready to move on, dismissive of the ugly, new-fangled sculpture.

"Actually," he pointed out, "It's quite amazing. As you get closer, it reflects all the buildings and becomes really beautiful."

He flipped ahead to this picture:
He was right. Looking closer at the sculpture and understanding it within the context of its surroundings made all the difference in my appreciation for its beauty.

How often are we like that in life? How many times do we dismiss out-of-hand another person based on our initial first impression?

I've done that with friendships sometimes. My initial impression of a person will be something like, She seems nice enough, but we probably don't have anything in common. Luckily, I'm a pretty nice person, so I've gotten to know some…

"But how fast can you go?"

So . . . I took up running this summer. (She says casually, as if it's the most natural thing in the world).

Yep, I am now one of those crazy people waking up three or four days a week while it's still dark, pulling on the shoes and hitting the streets. It's an interesting world out there. I'm starting to recognize some of the same people out and about, from the real runners who intimidate me with their teeny shorts and their fast pace to the older couples out walking and holding hands. Then there's that one lady, a grandma in her 60s who power-walks, smiles at me sincerely, and calls out every time I see her, "You're doing great!" I love that woman!

I am doing great, and I am really proud of myself. Before this summer, I had never run a mile straight. In my life. No, not even when the P.E. teacher blew her whistle and announced cheerfully, "It's time for the mile run!" I just figured running was something other people did, not me…

Nearly Wordless Wednesday: Brandon Mull

Lillian's favorite books are the Fablehaven series, so she was thrilled to meet the author, Brandon Mull, last Saturday. He took the time to talk to her and Joey and find out their interests, even though there was a long line. She was especially excited when he told her the next Fablehaven book would be out in March, just in time for her birthday. He was gracious, and afterwards, Lillian told me, "I bet he's a good dad."

edited to add: Until Debbie's comment, I hadn't realized that yes, years ago, I went to Church every week with Brandon Mull, before he was famous. This was back when we had just two children and before I knew DH would one day arrive an hour early just to get his autograph. =) In fact, I just pulled out a picture directory of the BYU 54th Ward, and there he is, looking essentially the same as he does in the picture above!

My husband has been saying for months that he knew him from somewhere, and now we know where!

Q&A: Schooling & Homework

(So, remember when I said it might be a "few weeks" before I get to everyone's questions? One more example of my tendency to be overly optimistic. Please don't take it personally if I haven't answered your question yet. I will get to it! Some of the questions I've avoided so far are because I know they'll take me a lot of thought to answer just right and I haven't had the concentrated time to do them justice.)

from Shaunda:

Do you homeschool your children or send them to public school and why?
It's probably obvious by now that I don't homeschool my children. We live in an area with very good schools with great and dedicated teachers who have always done a great job nurturing and loving my children. I could see situations where I would want or need to homeschool and I think I could do it if necessary, but I'm grateful I don't need to. My children are getting a wonderful education and I'm very thrilled about it. I've mentio…

What I'm up to . . .

I'm starting a fun group -- The Amazing Mother's Guild. First meeting is next Friday morning at my house. If you live nearby and want to come, just let me know and I'll send you an invite with the address.

Homework Time (Wordless Wednesday)

(and no, my kitchen is not always this clean.)