Thursday, November 21, 2013

It Would Not Have Been Asked of You...

So I've started a new routine with my little one. I realized, only too late, that I was missing some very important bonding time in the quiet evening before bed.  I've always been very proud about my little one's sleep pattern.  She starting sleeping 12 hours a night when she was only about 4 months old.  Since then, bedtimes have been pretty simple: sometimes a short story, sometimes a song, sometimes both and always prayers.  After a few minutes of crying or sniffling, she would drift off to sleep listening to anything from Primary songs to Tchaikovsky.   It was harder at Nana's and Grandma's houses because, as we all know, sometimes Nana's and Grandma's houses can be a bit dark and spooky without our favorite Cinderella night light by our side. 
I would have continued in this routine had it not been for the other day, actually several 'other day's ago, when I was listening to a talk by my all-time favorite apostle, Elder Jefferey R. Holland.  This talk, Within the Clasp of Your Arms, was given in May of 1983 when Elder Holland was the president of Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah. Here is the link, I recommend that you listen to it as opposed to reading it because his voice is steeped in the Spirit:
The talk recounts a dream Elder Holland had one night after coming down particularly hard on his five year old son, Matt.  In that dream, Elder Holland required Matt to help drive one of two cars while the family was moving. Long story short, having realized the near impossible thing Elder Holland had asked of his son, he pulls the car he is driving over and runs back to find Matt.  He sees him on the side of the road playing with an older man.  The man looks at Elder Holland and says, "You should not have left him alone to do this difficult thing.  It would not have been asked of you."
I dropped everything. It hit me with such force.  I immediately started to cry. I knew at that moment if I had met my maker, His words to me would have been along the same line. "You should not have left her alone to do this difficult thing.  It would not have been asked of you."  I know bedtime seams like such a small part of the day.  I know that at the end of my day, I really want to sit and spend time with my husband. I know at the end of my little one's day, she wants to snuggle and cuddle her mother. I am ashamed to say that, for the past 4 years of her life, I have not always put her bedtime needs above my own.  I have rationalized it with thoughts like, "she'll only cry for a few minutes" or "I really need a break, she'll be okay" or "we'll start reading more when she's older" or even "It'll be healthier for her to get used to going to sleep on her own". 
"It would not have been asked of you" just kept replaying over and over in my mind.  I remember bedtimes when I was little. They were happy and peaceful, full of my mother's voice reading and singing and soothing.  I am quite often overwhelmed, as I'm sure most of us are, with my inadequacies of a parent but I realized in the seemingly small thing, I could be better.  I started to read to my little one every night, real stories and books like The Chronicles of Narnia.  I also began singing to her again. One nights that she gets to bed on time, I will sing to her until she falls asleep.  Some nights, unfortunately, she gets to bed very late because of our commitments.  On those nights, I may not read but I do sing to her until she falls asleep or is okay with me getting up.  
I know she enjoys it.  She loves the books and the songs and most of the time, she sings along with me until she's too tired to continue. I enjoy it. It is a lot of fun to share my favorite stories with her.  It does my heart good to see that bedtime is not as stressful for her anymore.  
Tonight was a late night.  We didn't read but we sang and she was okay with that. When I sing to her, I often have the same thought: What would I sing to her right now if it was the last time I would get to sing to her?  What is the one message I want her to remember.  I have this horrible fear that we will somehow be separated from each other.  I know that, for the most part, it is irrational but it's still there and it sends me into near panic. But separated or not, I know there will come a time where she may want or be able to listen to me or may not want to confide in me.  I also know that song is a powerful memory trigger. Songs have a profound effect on a person's spirit.  So, what are the most important things that I want her to remember and bring to the forefront during times of uncertainty or unrest? The first one that comes to mind is, I Am a child of God:  
I want her to remember who she is.  I want her to know how desperately her Father in Heaven loves her.  I want her to know He has a plan for her and that nothing is in vain.  Every heartache and every joy will give her the knowledge and experience to fulfill her own divine purpose.  I hear the words to this song and my heart aches for her.  I worry so much that I am not doing enough to teach her, prepare her or protect her. Night after night, my eyes fill with tears as I try to impress on her the knowledge of who she is, where she comes from and where she's going.  Night after night I struggle to put the future of my child in the hands of He who created her.  I struggle to turn my worries and fears over to the Lord again and again.  I am so inadequate.  I need my savior to help me where I lack.  I need Him to watch over her and protect her in a way that I cannot.  And, more importantly, I KNOW He does!

The next most important thing I want my little one to know is how wholly and completely I love and adore her.  I want her to know how amazing I think she is.  I know there will be days where she feels rejected and alone and when she does, I want her to remember she is my world.  I want her to remember that just because someone says something to her or about her doesn't make it true.  Again I find my heart breaking for her because I know that there will be people who do not see her worth. There will be people who hurt her. And again, I find myself pleading with my Father to watch over her and protect her.  I know He cannot spare her all of life's heartache but I also know that He can bolster her up and help her to be strong enough to bear it.  I want her to know that I will always see her worth and I will always think she is wonderful! She will always be Baby Mine:

So these are where my thoughts are tonight. I know they are a little scattered and not written very well. And bedtime isn't the only place where I need to remember 'it would not have been asked of you'.  So I'm setting a goal to more sensitive and compassionate toward my little one's needs. I am also going to make a bigger effort to share my testimony with my daughter and to take time during the day to remind her that she is a beloved daughter of God. Yup. Those are my goals for now.

Friday, June 17, 2011


So it's been a while since I've posted. Mostly because everytime I sit down to write, I'm either inturrupted or at a loss for words (I know, completely uncharictaristic of me). Oh, and I read everyone else's blogs and see how creative and well worded they are and get a little bit of stage fright.

I used to consider myself creative and well worded. Then I had a child and my brain was erased.

Let's see, what's been going on since I last wrote...

January: Not much happened that month. At least not that I can remember. We really enjoyed our holidays back home with family. Elsie was spoiled of course. I don't think I even have pictures. I worry I'm turning into my mother, she hardly ever took pictures. I'd love to turn into her in every other way but that :)

Our Family at the Branch Christmas Party

February: Valentine's day! Tyler gave me a nice card and a cute stuffed puppy. It seems like every year the stuffed puppies get bigger and bigger. I'll have to get one of those cool animal hamocks for above my bed.

March: We got another dog. That's right. Another one. His name is Zed. He's a yellow lab. He's big. He's still a puppy. He'll get bigger. We need to move. Elsie LOVES him.

Zedekia aka: Zed

April: My birthday! Tyler took me out to eat and bought me some flip flops. Love that guy. Also got to see my BFF Katie. We met 1/2 way in Grand Island for pedicures and lunch. It was a good month. We also had a nice visit from my friend, Dorothy. She lives next to my mom and we grew up visiting with her. It was nice to see her again.

The last year of my twenties. It's been a heck-of-a decade.
Grandma Dorothy and Elsie

May: Busy planning a bridal shower for a good friend, Nicole. I got to make a cake. Love doing that. We were home for visits. I spent the last part of May and 1st part of June with my parents.

The Spred

The Cake

June: Nicole's wedding! It was beautiful! Loved being a part of it. I got my first 're-order' cake when she asked me to make a surprise groom's cake for Justin. It was a fish.

It's a lemon cake. Get it? Fish with lemon? ha ha

The Girls

Tyler is doing well. He recently started another job. He now works for Jim Trotter. He does a little bit of everything, which is why this job is perfect for him. The other day, he told me he had been working on a parade float! His birthday is this weekend. We're having a day of his favorite foods.

We are both staying pretty busy with various church callings. Tyler is the Branch Mission Leader. He gets to help keep our missionaries in line. I think he really enjoys it.

I get to serve in the Primary. For my non-LDS friends, that's the children's Sunday school. I love it. I get to teach and help with music and plan super fun activities.

Elsie is growing up way too fast! She'll be two in a month. I can't believe how amazing she is! She speaks so well and picks up on things so quickly. She says complete sentences and can express her feelings to us. She can count to 5 and sometimes higher. She knows some of her ABC's. She can sing 'Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star'. She sings the happy birthday song - not sure where she got that. She is also a very loving and compassionate child. She seems to sense when someone, even a stranger, needs a smile or a love. On one hand, I want her to stay this way forever, on the other, I can't wait to see the wonderful, talented young women she will become. Every day there is a new development, new words, new animal sounds. I feel so blessed to be her mama. I could go on and on and on about her but I think maybe I'll just post some pictures instead.

Elsie and Mama

Elsie and Daddy

Enjoying an apple all by her big self
Just being "The Bean"
She love horses of any kind
Mama and Elsie at the Easter Egg Hunt
Look what I got!

Until next time...

Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Goodies Vol. 2

Oreo Balls! If you haven't had these, you haven't lived! I got the recipe from a girl I used to work with. Super easy. Super good.

Here's the recipe:
1 package Oreo cookies
1 8oz package cream cheese, softened
white almond bark (took about 1/2 the package)*

Crush Oreos in a blender (I use a food processor because the last time I used a blender, it broke it. Was it the Oreos? Was it the blender? We'll never know). Add cream cheese. Mix well.
Shape in to balls.
Dip into melted almond bark. I like to put green and red sprinkles on them. It jazzes them up a bit. Place on wax paper to set.
*I use the whole package and use any left over almond bark to dip pretzels. Yum!
There, now that wasn't so hard, was it?

Christmas Goodies Vol. 1

I've decided to chronicle my Christmas Baking Extravaganza 2010. I have about 14 treats I'm making this year. I was supposed to start on Monday but we had some other obligations. My start date was pushed back to Thursday. Since I'm going to be gone this weekend and we leave for home next Friday, I have to bake/candy make like mad!

Yesterday I ATTEMPTED my Grandma Rex's fudge recipe. Now I'm a pretty good baker and cook. I'm not afraid to try something difficult or even a little crazy. You're talking to the woman who balanced a 3 tier wedding cake on wine glasses. A little fudge recipe can't scare me!

WRONG! This isn't your average fudge - or at least it hasn't been since the invention of marshmallow fluff. This fudge is old school. The recipe calls for fresh cream for Pete's sake! Since my access to fresh cream ended when I was too old for 4-H, I had to settle for store bought cream.
The recipe was also very vague. I'm not a candy maker so I was unfamiliar with 'medium ball stage', which is apparently essential knowledge. I did my best to educate my self via the Internet and my Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. The medium ball stage is really something you have to experience first hand.
Another key factor in candy making...PATIENCE. For those of you who know me well, you'll understand patience is a virtue that I do not possess. In short, I did not cook it long enough. I did not beat it long enough - scratch that - I didn't make TYLER beat it long enough. I did not wind up with Grandma Rex's fudge.

You know that saying, "looks like a rat, smells like a rat, must be a rat"? That doesn't apply to fudge. What I wound up with tastes a lot like fudge. It looks a lot like fudge. It smells like fudge. It's not fudge. It's somewhere between a glorified ice cream topping and fudge.
I learned a lot from this experience. Hopefully enough that the Penoche I'm making next week (to be covered in a future post) WILL turn out the way Grandma's did.

I was so close! Unfortunately, almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Quick Update

So I realize I haven't posted anything in a while. We've been busy! Let's see, what's happened since April 20th?
Tyler got 2 new jobs. The first one was for a lumber company - 6 weeks in, the closed their doors. The second was for a large feed lot in Broken Bow. He Started in early November. So far so good.
Elise has been walking since June/July. She is a busy girl and into everything. She is very sharp. She knows several words and animal noises. She finally hit the 20lb mark in Sept/Oct. She might be pint-sized but she packs a wallop! She loves animals, especially her doggies.
Speaking of doggies, we have 2 now. Buck, our 3 1/2 year old beagle/coon hound we've had for almost 2 years. The newest addition is Jax, or as Tyler has dubbed him - Jackson Barkley Harris. He is a Yorkie - not sure how old. Maybe 2? We inherited him when Tyler's aunt passed away this fall.
Jax is a pretty special dog. He's very clingy and skittish inside. He is my shadow and has to be touching me all the time. If I'm doing the dishes, he's sitting on my feet. If I'm at the table, he's tucked under my chair. Get him outside without a leash and he's a completely different dog! He runs from you and has been known to stay out all night patrolling the town. Not even cheese, his favorite treat, can entice him to come in before he's ready.
Both dogs are great with Elsie. Buck tolerates her and moves if she starts to annoy him. Jax loves her. He is always giving her kisses and playing tag. I'm grateful because in my experience, little dogs do not always do well around curious toddlers.
Let's see...I'm not doing anything spectacular. Just enjoying small town life, the Christmas season and being a wife and mother. I get to stay home with my little girl. We read books, watch movies and bake all day. That's the life! At least it's my life and I'm grateful for it!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I looked out the window and what did I see....

Elsie and I were in her room looking out the window at the horses. All of a sudden, they both spooked! I craned my neck to see what had scared them but couldn't see a thing. I thought maybe it was a snake or something. Jake went back about his business but Whiskey stayed alert. He kept staring south to the driveway. Curious, I put Elsie in her crib, pulled on my boots and went outside to see what the fuss was about.

As I walked toward the fence line, I could see two white-tailed deer, both very young. What a beautiful sight! They were bounding about the yard, obviously frightened and trying to decide where to go. I watched both of them leap over a growing pine tree, about my height, with ease. The disappeared over the hill toward the highway. I waited and hoped they would make it across the highway okay. They did! Across the road from us is open farm land. I could see them bounding across the field to safety.

I love living in the country.

I didn't think to take my camera outside with me. After the deer left, I went and got it and took a picture of the direction I was looking. You can see the horses. Whiskey is in front, Jake behind. The big tree to the right of Whiskey is the one they jumped. The highway is beyond the trees.

Monday, April 19, 2010

I'm baaaack!

Finally! Our new, month old computer is hooked up to the net! I can blog again! Unfortunately, it will have to wait until tomorrow :( But I promise, I'll be back with pictures!!!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

My New Year Resolutions

I don't usually do this. Making resolutions isn't my thing. I don't like to fail, I have a short attention span and I don't have a good memory. This makes it difficult to follow through on my goals when they cover a whole year. In fact, I can't remember making resolutions since I was probably about 5 or 6. I'm sure those goals were along the lines of ride a bike, read a chapter book and the like. Good news, I know how to ride a bike, or at least I did when I was 20. I have also read several chapter books in the last 20+ years. Those were probably the last resolutions that I made and kept.

Here we go:

1. Lose my pre - pre baby weight. I already lost my baby weight. All 60 pounds of it. I'm about 20 pounds into this resolution so it's a safe one to make. I've already accomplished it even if I never loose another pound.

2. Move to a nicer house in the country. Again, a safe resolution since it's probably going to happen in a few weeks. We just have to sign the lease.

Now here's where it gets harder. We're getting into the stuff I actually have to work at.

3. Be a better wife. I'm not saying I'm a bad one but we all have room for improvement, right? I'd like my thoughts to revolve more around my husband and a little less around my self. A wise man once told me, "If you are constantly taking care of him and he is constantly taking care of you, you'll both be taken care of." Thanks, Dad! I'd like to add, not only would we be taken care of but we would be much happier, better friends, better sweethearts and better parents.

4. Be a better Mom. I'm sure this will be on my resolution list for the rest of my life. I am constantly trying to be worthy of this wonderful calling of motherhood. What job is there that is of a higher importance? I hate to break it to you, leaders of the free world, doctors, lawyers and rodeo clowns, nothing that you do can compare to or have a bigger impact than raising the next generation. A wonderful Later-Day Saint prophet, David O. McKay, once said, "No other success can compensate for failure in the home." It would stand to reason then, that there is no failure greater or more detrimental than failure in the home. My house will not fail. My house will be a safe haven in a world gone mad.

5. Go to church. Not as easy as it sounds when you have spent years walking the in the other direction. I want my family to be centered on Christ. I want my children to have a firm foundation. This is going to require a lot of effort on my part, and some good old fashioned determination. "Choose ye this day whom ye will serve;...but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" (Josh. 24:2, 15).

6. Blog more. I enjoy it.

7. Keep a better house. I think that if my house was more orderly, my brain might follow suit.

8. Get pregnant or have another baby. This resolution's completion is contingent on the hubs. I guess we'll see....

9. Entertain more. I like to cook and bake. I also enjoy visiting with friends and family. Why not combine the two?

10. Scrapbook. I have a feeling that if I don't get on top of this now, I never will.

There you have it, folks. My New Year Resolutions. Wish me luck. It looks like my plate is pretty full.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I wanted to write about the symbolism of Christmas. You know, what the candy cane represents; why we have Christmas trees and wreaths. Unfortunately, that will have to wait. There is a pressing matter that needs to be addressed immediately!

Okay. Here it is. Be kind to people who push snow! I'm not talking about the city, although conscience dictates you ought to be nice to them too.

Let me tell you a little story. My sweet husband works for K2 Construction. They do underground utilities i.e. water mains, gas lines etc. As I'm sure you can imagine, when it snows, they have to find something else to do. Instead of sitting dormant all winter, they help clean up Lincoln when it snows.

Now I'll admit, before I met Tyler I was the first in line to bawl out those lazy guys who barely scraped the parking lot at work. Why do they have to put the snow in a parking stall? That's two stalls close to the door that we can't use! Why can't they scrape it so I can see the lines? Why aren't the sidewalks scooped and salted at 7:00 am? Come on guys! I have to go to work and I don't want to even SEE a flake of snow on the pavement when I get there!

Let me tell you how it really works. On Sunday night, we got a call from Tyler's boss. "Be at the shop at 2:00" That's right, 2:00. Not the next day either. 2:00 in the MORNING!!! He went out that morning and didn't return home until about 1:00pm. That's almost 12 hours!

I know what you're thinking, "they're in those warm machines all day just going along blocking in cars!" NOT so! My poor hubby was pushing a shovel. That's right! You heard me. A shovel. For those of you who have shoveled your own driveways and sidewalks, you know that one driveway can take hours in this kind of weather.

The next day, he was out at 9:00am but only because his crew leader didn't call him. He was out until 6:00pm. Still longer than banker's hours. So he's out all day in the snow and wind trying to stay on top of things. Never mind that 20 minutes after clearing an area, it's snowed over again. It NEVER stopped snowing that day.

He came home and went straight to bed. Why? Because he had to go out at 1:00AM. 1:00!!!! That means he had to get up at 11:30 so he could get his truck out to go to the shop. Then he proceeded to push snow until 6:00PM Wednesday! That's like 18 hours!!

People need to understand how BIG those machines are. You can't just turn on a dime. Sometimes, that makes it hard to be picky about where to pile the snow. Also, a word of advice, please don't follow a back hoe and then just stop behind them so you can let your wife out to shop and wait until she gets back to move. If you trap them, they can't finish their job! Don't watch them plow a few spots and then park where they haven't plowed. Hello? How are they supposed to plow where you're at. If you are going to do that, don't get mad when they HAVE to plow around you or they don't get to go home! Especially when they try their hardest not to plow you in.

Don't make rude gestures. Don't complain that the snow is in theese three parking stalls instead of the ones 6ft from those spots. Oh, and especially don't come out and casually ask 12ft high, 6ft wide piles to be moved after someone has spent 5 hours plowing your lot and putting the snow where you asked them to put it, even though they knew it wouldn't work. Oh yeah, and if you work on a crew, don't just sit there sleeping in the truck while one person does all the work. Ridiculous!

Please remember that your lot isn't the only one it town. Remember that those boys have been up since before you went to sleep the night before. They are allowed a few mess ups or inconveniences on your part. It's not the end of the world if you have to park somewhere else. It's not the end of the world if you have to wait a bit to get in to the lot. Just remember the world doesn't revolve around you and it won't hurt you to be nice to the working class, especially when they've been out in the snow for 18 hours so your acrylic-nailed self won't have to break a nail on a shovel.

Whew! What a rant.

Sunday, December 6, 2009


I'm having issues with my blog. Please tell me if you can see the whole background on your computer because I can't on mine.

I love Christmas. I love it more this year because of my little one. I get to sing Christmas carols to her instead of traditional lullabies. We got her First Christmas ornament and she helped Daddy hang it on the tree. We also got the dog some reindeer antlers, I'm not sure how that will go.

Now it's snowing. Tyler says there are about 2-3 inches on the ground. By the middle of the week, we could have a foot. Maybe I'd better stock up at the grocery store. I love the snow. It's beautiful and pure and peaceful. I love the crisp, clean feeling in the air. I love how even the dirtiest streets look clean and sparkly. At least until people muck it up.

It's not just the lights, ornaments, music and snow that make this season so special. It's the reason for the season that makes this time of year so special. This year more than ever, the account of the Nativity carries a special message. One of my favorite Christmas songs is Mary, did you know?

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy
Would someday walk on water?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy
Will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
That your baby boy
Has come to make you new?
This child that you've delivered
Will soon deliver you.

Mary did you know
That your baby boy
Will give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy
Will calm the storm with his hand?
Did you know that your baby boy
Has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little baby
You've kissed the face of God.

The blind will see
The deaf will hear
The dead will live again
The lame will leap
The dumb will speak
The praises of the Lamb
Mary did you know
That your baby boy
Is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy
Will one day rule the nations?
Did you know
That your baby boy
Is heaven's perfect Lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding
Is the Great I Am.
Imagine if you were her. Imagine what the would've been like. I look at my little girl and I see perfection. No, it's not that I'm a biased mother. She really is perfect. She can't lie, cheat, or steal. She can't swear or manipulate. She is incapable of sin. At least for the moment. It's not hard to look at her and imagine the impossible. But to look at your child and KNOW that he would be the savior of the world. What and amazing, overwhelming feeling.
It brings a knot to my throat to think of the responsibility she faced; to think of the pain and sacrifice she would have to endure. As a new mother, I am only beginning to understand some of what she must have felt. While I will never understand it all, I can have an inkling, a brief glimpse into what she experienced. I am so grateful that she chose to accept her calling in life. That she did her best and succeeded in helping her Father's plan move forward.
For me, Christmas brings with it such a visceral reaction. The feelings of Faith, Family and Traditions help to bring me back down to earth. The chaos and temporal demands of the rest of the year disappear and I am reminded of what is really important.

Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

More Blessings!

This post is all about the in-laws.

When Elsie was born, my mom was in Italy. She tried to get back but couldn't make it until we were home from the hospital. My mother-in-law stepped in and played the roll of my mother while we were in the hospital. We weren't prepared. We thought we were just going in to be monitored and then sent home. I didn't have anything. No clothes, no toothbrush, no deodorant, no nursing bras/pads, nothing. Tina took care of EVERYTHING. She even brought me Popsicles and cleaned my house! She came to visit every morning before she went to work to make sure everything was okay and that we didn't need anything, and to see Elsie, of course! She has been nothing but supportive from day one. She has welcomed me into her family with open arms. She is easy to talk to and has opened up to me as well. I love listening to her talk about her family. It is very important to me to learn all I can about Tyler's side of the family so that I can teach Elsie where she comes from. I want her to know that I appreciate everything she has done and continues to do for our family. I love her very much!

--------------------------------------Nana Tina and Elsie---------------------------------------

My father-in-law, Burt, is a wonderful person. He is so calm and gentle. I love watching him interact with Elsie. She is so tiny and he is so tall. It's a definitely a sight too see. I am grateful to him for being such a wonderful father and such a hard worker. He is very intelligent and talented. He can build things, fix things and gives great hugs! I'm so glad Tyler had a good example to follow. It gives me reassurance of the kind of father he will be. Burt raised Tyler to have a good work ethic and to stick with his responsibilities. I know that because of Burt, our family will be stable and strong. I love him too!
------------------------------------Grandpa Burt and Elsie---------------------------------------
My brother-in-law, Clay, is something else! I haven't spent much time with him. He works on a custom harvest crew and is gone for over half of the year. The time I have spent with him has not been dull! He is intelligent and funny. I'm not sure if he knows he's funny. He's always so serious. He is very strong willed and will gladly share his opinion with you about anything! It's kind of refreshing to meet someone who is just who he is; no apologies and no sugar coating! He hasn't met Elsie yet and I am excited to see his reaction.

I am also grateful for all of my new aunts and uncles.

Tina's family:

Joel and Deb Warren: Deb has always been so polite and smiley. I've only met her a few times but each time has been very pleasant. I appreciate Joel's pioneer spirit. He is always trying something new. I love that he is not content to just be. He likes to experience new things and has interesting stories to tell. He recently graduated truck driving school and went on the road. At a party to celebrate his accomplishment, I watched how he treated his grandson. He was so respectful and positive with him. I admire him for that.

Bo Bo: I LOVE Bo Bo. She has such a sweet spirit. She accepted me as part of the family before I was part of the family! She is very talented. She crocheted Elsie a beautiful blanket. She is thoughtful and fun to talk to. She is a very spiritual person and I love that she feels comfortable talking to me about her beliefs.
Barbie: Aunt Barb is such a strong person. She has gone through so much and whenever I see her, she has a hug and a smile for me. She loves talking to Elsie and Elsie tells her stories I've never heard before! She has such a great sense of humor :) She came and helped Tina get my apartment in order before we came home with the baby. She loves her children and her grandchildren and she is a SURVIVOR!

Scott and Tammy: Scott is such a big kid! He is always joking and smiling. He brings a funny dynamic to all of the family gatherings. Tammy is a very strong willed person. She treats me like I've always been a part of the family and I appreciate that. Their kids, Andy and Ethan, are some of the nicest boys I've ever met. Ethan even officially welcomed me to the family at our wedding and gave me a hug. It was so sweet. Andy was a groomsman and he so well spoken especially considering he's a teenager. He out spoke all the 'adult' groomsmen hands down.

Burt's family:
Grandpa Buck: You can really tell that all of his children love him so much. I know he loves them too. He came to visit us out of the blue shortly after Elsie was born. It meant so much that he would drive all the way up from Table Rock to see us. He held Elsie the whole time he was here. He was so happy. I am also grateful for the father he was to Burt. If it weren't for that, Tyler wouldn't be who he is.
---------------------------------Great Grandpa Buck and Elsie---------------------------------

Julie and Ned: Julie has come to everything I've ever invited her to. She brought us food after Elsie was born. That meant a lot to me. She has two boys so I know she enjoys Elsie when we visit. I don't know Ned very well but I do know that he has a good sense of humor. He came with Julie to visit us at the hospital. I appreciated that they took the time to come visit us.

Bev and Barb: Bev is always so warm and welcoming. She makes family gatherings a lot of fun. Barb is always smiling. There is something about her countenance that draws people to her.
Roger and Carla: Roger is pretty quite but you can tell he really cares about his family. I appreciate the relationship he has with Tyler. Carla is so sweet. She makes it a point to come talk to me and include me. Both Roger and Carla came out for Elsie's baby blessing at church. It meant a lot that they took the time to share that moment with us.
As you can see, we have quite the support system. I'm not used to having extended family in the same state. I have really enjoyed the family get together. I am excited that Elsie will be able to have that experienced. I am quite blessed to have all of these wonderful people in my life. I wish I had pictures of everybody. Nana Tina has them on here camera :)
Don't forget to comment with something that you're grateful for!!!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Count Your Many Blessings!

Some recent happenings with friends and family have got me thinking how grateful I am for my life and for my many blessings. I've decided to post a series of blogs on what I'm grateful for. this blog is about my family. When you're done reading, please comment with one or two of the things you are most grateful for in your life!

I am grateful for my husband, Tyler. He works so hard so I can stay home with our daughter. He provides a good home and always makes sure we have what we need. He is my best friend. He listens to me when I'm upset and when I'm happy and that's no small feet. I'm quite the talker and I have a wealth of emotions that require his attention. He is a wonderful father. He does everything in his power to make sure that Elsie is happy. She knows he loves her and misses him when he is gone. He is honest, trustworthy and has good family values. He's so big, he makes me feel safe. I know he makes Elsie feel that way too. Sometimes, all he has to do is pick her up and she relaxes and starts smiling. He is my helper. He works 10 to 12 hour days and still comes home to help me fix super, give the baby a bath, put her to sleep, change diapers, help with the laundry and anything else I ask him to do. It amazes me that he doesn't get tired of all my "Sweetheart, please's". Most of all he respects me as a wife and mother. He respects my faith even though he does not share it. It means so much to me that he is supportive of how I want to raise our family. He is the leader of our home and makes his decisions with us at heart. I love him very much. ----------------------------------------My Sweetheart

I am grateful for my baby. She is the greatest gift I could ever receive. She makes me smile when all I want to do is cry. She makes me cry when she smiles. She's a peacemaker, an entertainer, a reality check, a motivator and a beautiful child of God. She is so innocent and pure and I pray daily that I will be able to help her stay that way. I pray that I will be able to help her develop her talents. I pray that we will have a good relationship and that I can use my experiences in a way that will help her be better person. She is also a somber responsibility. It is up to me and her father to set her feet on a path that will lead her back to her Heavenly Father. I know there will be times when we clash. She'll want to be awake when I want to sleep. She'll want to grow up when I want her to stay little. She'll want to go out when I need to keep her home. She inspires such a dichotomy of emotions. I'm so excited to see what kind of young woman she will become but there is a tinge of reluctance to see her become less and less of a baby. I am so grateful for her health. She was born at 37 weeks. She was perfect. The nurses and doctors kept saying how perfect she was considering she was early and only 5lbs 6oz. The sun rises and sets on every little coo, smile and funny face. Some people will tell you the mother is the glue that holds the family together, I disagree. Elsie has strengthened our family exponentially. We are kinder to each other because of her. We are more peaceful because of the sweet spirit she brings to our home. She makes us want to be better people and has inspired several changes for the better. I love my little girl more than anything else in the world. She has been such a blessing to our family!--------------------------------------- Sweet Little Girl
I am so grateful for my parents. They have supported me through so many trials. I know I have broken their hearts a time or two but they love me unconditionally. They have taught me to love unconditionally. I have learned the importance of family, hard work and honesty. All of the good qualities I have come from them. I am thankful for the way I was raised. They chose to raise us in the country and we attended a small school. Being raised outside of town gave all of us a handle on life that is not usually gained by city living. The circle of life was a part of our everyday existence. I learned about birth and death by watching our animals. I learned that sometimes it seams like life is taken before it's time. I also learned that, even though we may not understand it, its all a part of God's plan. Learning all of this at a young age helped me deal with loss later in life. The foundation I received from my parents has helped me through many dark places. My mothers cheerie attitude always saying, "Smile, Desi!", "I'm so excited for you!" and of course, "Keep your nose clean". Her little motos have stuck with me through the years. She is a rock and my hero.
------------------------------------------My Mom :)

My dad is so supportive. He is patient and understanding. He is dependable. I know that if I need him, he will be there. He is a wonderful speaker. I love listening to his stories and he has a way of tailoring them to apply to his audience. Even if it's just a 15 year old girl. He taught me to drive when I was probably 5. He taught me to take pride in my work. He shows me that what I have to say is worth listening to. No father could have better taught his daughter about individual worth. I love him very much.

-------------------------------------------- My Dad

I love my sisters and brother. Cheyenne is so supportive and is willing to help me with anything. I can talk to her about parenting questions, craft ideas, she helps me plan events. She helped to make my wedding day so special. When we were young, she protected me, played with me, taught me things she had learned in school. I have always looked up to her and she has never failed to set a good example. Ian and I were the middle children. I think that bonded us in a special way. He is a very intelligent person and I love discussing his different views. He is a good father and husband and his boys are some of the cutest in existence. Growing up, he was someone I could talk to like a friend. Savanna is something else! She is a wonderful person. I look up to her so much. She isn't afraid to be her goofy self and I love it! I have rarely heard a cross word come out of her mouth. She is a true example of selfless love and acceptance. She listens to me when I need to talk and I love that she feels comfortable calling me when she needs to talk. I love her so much. I love all my siblings very much and feel blessed to have such a wonderful family.
--------------------------------------- Ian and Triston

-------------------------------------- Cheyenne and Elsie
----------------------------------------Savanna and Me
I am grateful for my family! Stay tuned for more of my list of blessings!!! Don't forget to post your blessings!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Back On Line

Okay, not exactly. I'm at my mom's house so I thought I would post an update.

On July 18th at 2:23am, little miss Elsie Maline Harris made her debut. Here's her story...

On Thursday, July 16th, I had a doctor's appointment - just a regular check up, nothing big. Tyler wasn't supposed to be able to go with me but through a lucky twist of fate, he was there. The doctor showed some concern for my blood pressure - it had been high through most of my third trimester but it was starting to get a little out of control. He also noticed some signs of pre-eclampsia, a pregnancy related problem that causes blood pressure to sky rocket. It can eventually harm your kidneys - serious stuff. The only 'cure' for it is to deliver the baby. So the doctor asked me some questions - was I having headaches etc? I hadn't been having any headaches worth mentioning. Then he had me go to a lab to run some tests to see if I indeed had pre-eclampsia.

Fast forward to Friday the 17th. I felt tired all day but just assumed it was part of being pregnant. Tyler came home from work and while he was telling me about his day. I didn't have much to say about mine since I had been on bed rest for about a week at this point. While he was talking, he noticed me rubbing my forehead. He asked if I had a headache. I did but it was just a little one, hardly worth mentioning. He said he thought we should call the doctor. I didn't want to because I thought my headache was from not wearing my glasses that day or something like that. He persisted. I told him no, if I still had a headache the next day, then we would call. He decided he would call anyway. The on call doctor told him to take my blood pressure and if it was over 150 or so on top, to go into the hospital for monitoring.
Tyler's mom brought in an electronic blood pressure cuff and we took my BP. The screen kept erroring out. It would work on Tyler and on Tina but not on me. Tyler said that was probably because my BP was too high to register. I just figured it was broken or something. So we went in search of a BP machine, like the ones at the supermarkets. We couldn't find one any where. Finally, Tyler said we should just go to the hospital and have them take it. Then, if it was too high, they could admit me and if it was fine, they could send me home. I caved and away we went.
When we got to the hospital, the took me back to triage to check my BP. The nurse left the room and when she came back she said they were going to go ahead and admit me because I'd be there a while. I asked why. She said because my blood pressure was 230/130 or something close to that. That is stroke and seizure level! And to think, I wouldn't have even called the doctor if it weren't for Tyler. I'm very lucky to have a hubby that pays attention to me that closely.
The nurse went to call the doctor to see what needed to be done and then came back in and said they were going to have to induce me. My lab that I mentioned early had come back showing a bad case of pre-eclampsia and they needed me to deliver so they could get my BP back to a safe level. I told them they couldn't induce me until my dad got to the hospital to give me a blessing. I called and called and couldn't get a hold of him. Mom, of course, was in Italy so I couldn't call her. I called Cheyenne and she said she would continue calling Dad until he answered. I think she enlisted Savanna's help in calling as well. In the meantime, the doctor was getting impatient. I decided I better have a back up plan. Savanna's in-laws lived in Lincoln at the time. Her father-in-law was a bishop. I decided to call him and see if he could come give me a blessing. Tyler finally got a hold of him and he agreed to come to the hospital. We waited and waited for him to get there all the while the doctor was getting more impatient. Finally, he arrived with his son. It turns out, the had gone to the wrong hospital :)
While all of this was going on, we took drastic measure on the Dad front. I called our neighbor to see if she could go over to Dad's to see if he was sleeping or something but I couldn't get a hold of her. Finally, Tyler's dad decided to drive out to Milford to see what he could figure out. When he got to Dad's, the car was in the driveway. He knocked but no one answered. He went inside and hollered and it turns out Dad was downstairs watching a movie and he had left his phone upstairs on the kitchen counter and couldn't hear it ring. So Dad and Burt high tailed it back to Lincoln.
It worked out that Dad arrived about 10 minutes after the Lake's. So, Bishop Bob and Dad gave me a blessing and the nurse induced me. She said it would probably be at least a two day labor so everyone should go home and get some sleep.
About 20 minutes after everyone left, the nurse came in and said she had talked to the doctor and they were going to have to do a c-section. The baby's heart beat was dipping every time I had a contraction and the doctor didn't think she would handle the stress of a two day labor. Had I been closer to my due date, or dilated a bit more, things probably would've been okay. But, since I was no where near physically ready to have the baby, they decided it would be best for all involved to do a c-section. I asked how much time we had. The nurse said about a half hour to 45 minutes. I asked if that was until they started or until the baby was here. It turned out to be that latter. So, we called everyone back to the hospital and they rolled me away!
The rest is pretty much a blur. Mostly because I didn't see any of it. They had a big blue sheet blocking my view. Tyler could describe the inside of my mid section to you in detail. Then, before I knew it, I heard a little cry! Tyler immediately went over to her and started talking to her and helping the nurses clean her up. He cut her cord and then tried to bring her to show me but I was too nauseous from the anesthetic to turn my head. I got my first look at her in the recovery room but I felt to shaky to hold her.
Finally, when we got back to our room, I held my baby girl for the first time. She was so sweet and so tiny. She was 5lbs 6oz and 18 3/4 inches long. More importantly, she was perfectly healthy, aside from a little touch of jaundice (no lights/blankets necessary).
It took quite a while for my BP to return to normal. In fact, it was still quite out of whack when we left the hospital. They actually kept us an extra day to monitor me.
So, there's the story of Elsie Maline. Now we're home and enjoying life. Every day is something new and exciting and she is growing and changing so fast I'm not sure I can keep up!

Okay - the photos were supposed to be at the end of the story but I'm tired of trying to figure this out. Plus the connection is kind of slow so it's taking forever to load - for more photos - go to my facebook page. There's a whole bunch there.

Don't know when I'll be able to post next so savor this one!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Quick Update

Hi Everyone!

I still don't have internet access but I wanted to give you a few updates. First, I got married on March 7th. It was a perfect day, thanks to my wonderful friends and family - especially Cheyenne & Savanna. I don't have pictures to post yet but I think Cheyenne is planning on posting some soon. Second, Tyler & I are going to have a baby in August! We're super excited. It's a little girl and as of now, her name will be Elsie Maline. Needless to say, those two major life events have pretty much occupied my life the last few months. And that's not a bad thing. It's been fun. I'd like to say I'll post again soon but I don't know when I'll have time and internet access simultaniously so we'll have to play it by ear.
Love you all!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Temporary Hiatus

Hi! My roommate moved out and took the computer with her. I'm actually posting this from her new house. I don't know when I'll be able to post again - not sure if Tyler & I will get internet in our new apartment or not. We're not moving for another 2 weeks anyway so it will at least be that long before I post.

Just an FYI - Within 3 or 4 days of reading the first book in the Twilight saga, I had finshed books 2 and 3. I just got book 4 the other day so I'm not quite done with that yet. I'll let you know when I'm finished and then we can discuss it at will without fear of spoiler alerts!

Love you all! Talk to you soon!


Saturday, December 27, 2008

I Did It!

Okay, so I finally got around to reading Twilight. I started Christmas Day and finished yesterday. I don't know who's bright idea it was to put a chapter from the next book in the back of the first book but now I'm going crazy. I have to read the 2nd book! I'm borrowing them from Mom and I told her to get the 2nd one to me ASAP! But I can't wait! So today, I went to Wal-Mart to see if they had it - they don't. They have the 1st and the 3rd. A lot of good that does me. So here I am, twiddling my thumbs, posting a blog when I could be doing something much more important; READING BOOK 2!!!

Hope your holidays were merry!


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It's Time For A New Post!

Guess what?!?!?!


Once you've finsished reading this post, you can scroll down to a post from early this year entitled, You Asked, I Delivered! Actually, Steff Is The Only One Who Asked So You All Get a Freebie :), and you'll see the lucky guy! :)

For those of you who don't know, his name is Tyler. He proposed to me on Friday. We were out singing karaoke. We usually sing a few songs together so when the DJ called us up there, I didn't really think too much of it. When we got up to the front, I noticed the screen said George Strait. I asked if he was sure I was singing with him because we never sing George together - he doesn't have any duets. He said yes so I picked up the mic. When he picked up his mic, he said, "Okay, I lied. I'm going to sing this one by myself. But before I do, I just want you to know I love you. I've loved you since I met you and I will always love you. (insert more mushy stuff I can't remember)."
Then he got down on one knee, opened the ring box and said, "I have a question for you. Will you marry me?"
I said yes but I don't think he heard me. I was crying. He stood up and said, into the mic, "I think that's a yes."
The whole bar was hootin' and hollerin'. People we didn't know were coming up and huggin us. It was really neat. Tyler's mom was there & she got pictures of it. If I get copies, I'll post them.
I also tried to take a picture of the ring but my camera batteries are dead and the camera in my phone doesn't take good pictures. Plus, it doesn't format them right so I couldn't post it anyway. I'll get batteries and post a picture of the ring, it's beautiful! My favorite out of all the ones I've had! LOL

That's all for now, I'm sure I'll have lots to talk about now that something interesting is going on. I probably won't have time to though :) Funny how that works.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Halloween - It's Not Just For Little People :)

Okay - the pictures are in the wrong order but I'm tired of messing with this thing so you'll just have to deal with it :)

I was Dorothy for Halloween and Katie was a Vampiress.

Check out my Ruby Slippers :)


We made amends :)


Saturday, October 25, 2008

It's Neither Here Nor There

It's been a while since I've posted anything. Mostly because I have nothing to say - I know, a shocker! I'm home by myself tonight so I thought I would start rambling and see if anything interesting comes out :)

I hurt my back. I'm not sure how but boy did I hurt it. Last Sunday, I was cleaning out our fish tank (there's no fish in it, just a bunch of algae). It had gotten to the point that you could barely see the rocks and plastic plant thingys. So, I got a bee in my bonnet and scrubbed it out. The problem is, the fish tank is almost as tall as me. It's one of those big hexagon shaped ones. So I had to stretch to get my arm down to the bottom to clean the sides of the tank. As near as I can tell, that's what did it. I think it just stretched it. On a normal person, this wouldn't have been a big deal. For me, it's darn near debilitating. I don't suppose it helps that I sit in a crummy chair for 9 hours a day in front of a computer and have horrible posture while typing. At any rate, my lower back has exploded in pain. I've laid on an ice pack almost every night this past week. It seemed to be helping until last night. I slept on my stomach - bad choice. Not that I had much of a choice - Cheyenne & Savanna can attest to my chaotic sleep habits. I tend to move quite a bit and usually wake up looking like Albert Einstein. So today, I could barely move. It's starting to loosen up a bit now. I took a hot shower and now I'm icing it again. I think I'll try a little heat before I go to bed.

What else can I ramble about... Tyler and I have been dating, on and off, for a year. I can't believe it's been that long already! I'm super excited for all of you (family) to meet him. Baring anything out of the ordinary, he plans to come to the next Rex Reunion with me! Our parents met for the first time about 2 or 3 weeks ago. It went really well. They are such nice people and I feel so at home with them. I've never really dated anyone with a functional family :) I usually go for the lost puppy type. Not this time (yay me!)

I did some math the other day - again, shocking! It has been nothing but weddings for me since 2001. Thanks for starting that off Tiff :) **Tiff, Steff, Cheyenne, Ian, me, Savanna, Kellie (old roommate), Tammy (Katie's cousin - see lady bug cake blog), Wynter (co-worker & the recipient of the squiggly cake), and now my bestest friends in the whole world, or at leat Nebraska; Katie and Jasmine. They're not married yet but were right in the thick of preparations. Katie gets married in August of 2009 and Jasmine in May. So, when all is said and done, it'll be about 8 years of weddings. I don't mind telling you, I'm about sick of them. They are wonderful, beautiful, exciting days but I've never been a fan of bridal showers, bachelorette parties, rehearsal dinners, dress fittings, etc. I do enjoy making cakes and I'll get to do that again for Jasmine. My maid of honor duties preclude me from making a cake for Katie but I'm going to come up with something really neat for her bridal shower. Jasmine's cake is going to be one of the most unique that I've made so far. I'll be sure and post pictures but you'll have to wait 7 months to see them :)
** sorry if I left anyone off the list :)

Okay - I think that's enough babbling for one night. Here's a few random pictures to round out the hodge podge of thoughts in this post :)

Random snake that was by my apartment
This is me & my friend Nicole :)

The quintessential Katie & Des picture

Chance - one of my favorite people :)

Me & Karmin at work - it's what we do

Mom & Triston

Jess, Keegan & Me

Olivia being super cute as usual

Me & Tyler - I gave him a hair cut :)