What a blessing it is to see a child grow up in a family surrounded by a loving community.
Mothers work hard to carry a child and to take care of a baby when it is born. It is such a wonderful experience though to see a child grow up and see a woman become a mother as she nurtures that baby to grow and learn by her love. It is amazing how connected a community can become when a baby is born. As I sit here in church I see babies being passed around here and there from mom to a long time friend sitting next to her. I see women who are very well aged holding a baby, as they probably reminisce on how they once raised their own children and had that position of a new mom. Both the older women and the young lady hold the baby, adoring eyes on their tiny bodies, tender hands grasping their soft chubby legs and belly, and the warmth of the baby warming every heart.
It does take a community to raise a child. Mom is under a lot of pressure and going through many changes. With a first child, she has officially become a mother. Her status among her peers may change as she is no longer as free to meet up and likely holed up for days at home with her new little nugget. She may be struggling socially as each day becomes monotonous. Mothers of more than one child may be seeing the change of adding a sibling for their other children. Meanwhile, there are friends and family surrounding her, excited for the new addition, a new little personality to get to know. Family is there to help with meals and chores as mom recovers and learns to manage with baby. Friends are close to coo and hold the new child and take the baby from mothers tired arms. Peers are near to socialize and congratulate after a much needed week of baby care. Her husband is near her side through all of it as well, helping as much as he can while he is home.
A baby needs to feel loved. They sense and know much more than we think. It can be stressful for a baby when there are fewer people around (as it can be when there are too many people!). Having a community surround a family brings so much needed support and the families new addition can bring so much joy! It’s a beautiful thing to watch, so many sisters being benefited from having a baby in the room. Babies just bring a light and happiness! And even when they cry, heads turn because instinctually we know that baby is important and demands our attention. I know all family situations are not ideal where both mom and dad aren’t around or family is not close, etc. but I just wanted to highlight what I have seen in families around me and in the community of the church I am a part of. Families here are not perfect either, but it is obvious that children are a light in our lives that we cannot deny.
The media does not portray family and children like they used to or should. We are surrounded by ideas that marriage and children tie us down and are not important any more. That’s not the case. When children come into the world, they are a blessing, they are a piece of goodness from the Lord. I’m so grateful for the sweet babies I have been able to hold and take care of and the motherly instincts they have helped me connect to. I hope one day to be able to have my own and share the blessing of children with my family and friends. I hope this Father’s Day we can appreciate the family. Every member is needed and we can give special appreciation to Dad this day.
Thoughts on coping with calling an unexpected location your new home.
Have you ever thought about how you love the place where you grew up? The warm Saturdays at the field, the way laundry smells when mom is home doing work around the house, how that one Mexican restaurant is your families favorite, and the lady at the bank remembers you from when you were just tiny and stealing more candy than you needed from the bowl at her desk. Sometimes I just sit and think about how the Sacramento area was just the perfect place to grow up and how my family and I just fit in so well to the community. We had our spot and things we would do and people we knew and favorite hang out spots that no one else knew about. I also think about how my mom grew up somewhere else and that the way I feel about home may not have been how she felt about our home until she had been there awhile and settled in. I feel that way about where I live now.
Now, I am not a mother yet, but I don’t live with my husband where either of us grew up. I live in Salt Lake City now and its been a strange experience. Its only been about 8 months that Ive been here and I am just waiting for those “home experiences” where I am comfortable, people know me, and I love the little undiscovered parts of town and the surrounding area. I’m not there yet. I don’t know if that just happens as you grow up, you see the truth behind the glowing memories and see what is really before your eyes, but I have to think that I can have those glowing memories come from this new “home” as well. And then I don’t want to because I know I won’t be here long. We will only be here as long as my husband is in school for his Masters degree and thats only a couple more years. So do I settle in and try to make this home feel like my childhood home? Do I create that halo effect of the memories that I will have of this place and put effort into making it that way. Or do I welcome the new experience of now. Do I wait for a new “home” where I can settle in and find my place in the community so that my children will have that feeling of belonging and close knit neighbors and friendly passerby? Here in SLC, I drive to the packed Southside of the city for work, I work on my online classes in my apartment in an older complex hidden in a suburban neighborhood. There are people I am afraid of in my complex, there are children that are loud in the morning and frustrate me as they pound down the stairs and wake me up. there are smokers who make my home smell, there is a dirty creek behind my building, and someone stole a tire iron from my husbands jeep. These are the things that come to mind when I think of where I live now. Maybe its just a shift of mindset that needs to happen?
As the weather grows warmer, my memories and attitude toward this place warm up as well. I see the ducks in the rising creek play around, I see the flowers bloom on the trimmed bushes, the vitamin d from the sunshine makes me smile as I soak in the rays from the forgotten sun after months of cold winter. I look at our cozy and bright apartment int he evening, when its 7:30 and still light out, and I smile because we have all this together. And I think thats what makes up those golden memories from the past: warm weather, clean kitchens, ducks in the pond, flowers coming out to say hi, snow on the distant desert range melting day after day, and hope in the future to accompany the company of your loved one. I think it is possible to make a home in a strange place. It will definitely not be like your childhood home, but the halo effect on your memory of where you now occupy will come with time as you take in the moment and appreciate whats around you and who is around you. In no time, your memories and feeling toward your home will be as picturesque as if you had taken it with a polaroid. Imperfect yet just they way you wanted it to turn out.
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Monday is back and at it again. I went to the gym first thing in the morning. It was a good workout, did some running and some arm workouts. Nothing too complicated but just enough to get me going for the day. After that I got ready for the day. I wanted to dress nice but it was just too darn windy. Its been nice the past few days but the ugly weather is coming back. I put on my best windy day clothing and got my resume papers together and went on my way to Rexburg Motorsports to turn in an application to possibly clean and mop for the next few months. I drove over there and parked. I was scared to go in there! I want to work there so badly so I just told myself “the worst they can say is ‘no'” and I went in. The lady at the front desk was really kind and genuine and took my resume to give the the hiring manager, who would be in the next day. I left feeling good. I was expecting it to go a lot worse. But we’ll see how it goes… I drove around some more to drop off my resume a few more places. I went to Targhee Sports/Duck Creek Pawn. I walked in and knew the place needed some love and care! It was a dinky little shop and I immediately started thinking of all the ways the place could be improved. I talked to the older man at the counter and told him my situation. He said he knew he needed help around the place but wasn’t sure what to do about it and that he would talk to the owners. I said that’s great, thank you. I felt good about that one also while I was leaving. Now I wait. I went back home and got my stuff together and went to class. I parked at Windsor Manor because it was just too windy to walk! And I knew I would be there awhile, until 6:30 at least. I went to Comm 111 and it was totally pointless and I wanted to fall asleep. I went to the MC afterward and started working on the project for Comm130. I wasn’t understanding all of it so I quit and just worked on other stuff. I went to Comm 130. I dread that class just because it is an hour and a half long. I like some of the things I learn in there but I feel like I could learn a lot more about Photoshop and the functionality of the Creative Suit rather than listen to other random stuff. I don’t even really know what we talk about. I probably learn one or two helpful things in that class, three on a lucky day. After class I went home and vegged out. Mitchell came by around 8 and we went to his friends house in Sugar City. We stopped at Walmart to get his friend a birthday present. It was a gift card to Taco Bell and a bag of Easter Twix fun sizes. We went and he wasn’t home, but his parents were. We sat around and talked about dirtbiking and trails, and their grandkids and how they were doing. It was relaxing to be in an actual house that was nice, welcoming, and warm. It was nice talking to his friends parents, it reminded me of home and it was just a slow night but that’s okay. His friend finally arrived after truck troubles, and he showed us his GoPro videos from riding in Moab. I want to go there so bad to go riding! It looked beautiful and like perfect desert/forest crossover riding and I’ve wanted to go for so long. Now I want to go even more so! We said our goodbyes and headed home. I watched a movie in bed, Joseph and the Coat of Dreams or something haha. It was a cute movie, I really liked it. That was my day 🙂
Slow start to Sunday but it was great day in church. I went to the wrong Relief Society but then texted my roomie to clarify. I don’t like going to the other one, I get a weird vibe and everyone thinks I’m new! Nope, just in the wrong class… Class was great and we talked about the Christ and how He is unchanging in His divine nature and His purpose here on Earth. It was a great lesson and I felt really moved by it. Went to Sunday school and that was a great reminder that I need to be better at no judging people unrighteously. I have a habit of automatically thinking the worst of people or judging hem when they are annoying or are different than me in the way that they have a bigger louder personality than myself. I cant stand people who need lots of attention and this was a reminder that I need to have better thoughts and keep my mouth shut. Sacrament was alright and then I went home and put away my clothes that have been piled on the floor for a few days now. I hate folding clothes. It just doesn’t get done. But this time it did and I rewarded myself with a little nappy nap and watching the Croods on Netflix. Then Mitchell came over and we had dinner and then went to ward prayer and enjoyed some desserts. We watched Maleficent, my first time, and I love it! I would totally buy it, I love Sleeping Beauty so this was great. Now I’m just typing it up and catching up on my journal entries 🙂