Monday, February 14, 2011

Life Doesn't Get Calm

The twins are happily writing names on their Valentine's Day cards that they'll pass out today at school.  Of course, they picked out valentines with puppies and kittens.  And they've got their stuffed dogs "watching" them do their Valentines.  It's pretty cute listening to them - "Oh, this cute little doggie will be SO PERFECT for Katerina - it's small and cute just like her!" "Oh, Diego will just LOVE this bulldog." "Oh my gosh, this one is a long name to write!" "What name is this one?  Oh, that's Noah - he'd like that one with the kitten."  "You've done five already!  I better get going!"  They sing and hum in between comments.  I sure love these boys of mine.  Oh - they're starting to complain a bit - oh, they're now asking for swedish fish to "give us energy so that we can do this hard work."  Better help them for a few minutes...

OK, they're going again.  I'm back.  Now the swedish fish are talking in high-pitched voices to each other and having exciting adventures amidst the piles of Valentines.  "Oliver, come on, we'd better keep on writing!" says Silas.  "OK, these fish can just go rest in our tummies now," says Oliver.

I already published this but had to come back in and add the end of the story - of course they didn't stay so sweet and enthusiastic about the task of writing all the names of all the kids in their class on the Valentines.  By the end, we were all a little frustrated.  But it's done.  And I'm glad I recorded the happy moments at teh beginning or I'd probably just remember the frustrating part at the end...

I'll share photos later, but here are a few of the many events and activities that crammed the past week:
  • A fun train ride to SLC to watch the Jazz/Bulls game on Wednesday night (SO fun) 
  • Lots of work on our new version of the Power of Moms website (that's what Jared and I do with most of our evenings) plus the launch of our new affiliate program and work on details of our April Retreat - oh, and the book - got all the chapters of the book we're writing turned in from our great authors and now we've got lots of editing ahead of us.
  • Two new Joy School groups starting up and needing some help.
  • Getting Eliza started in a new dance class as the big birthday present she requested (and finding that I needed to be there checking her in for her new class at the same time that I had to take Isaac to scouts, teach scouts and be at the school for a PTO meeting - Tuesday afternoon was just plain crazy)
  • A fun new playgroup on Friday.
  • A trip to SLC to record our next set of podcasts for The Roundtable (great conversations, such wonderful women to work with)
  • Liza's big b-day party on Saturday (a tea party with 12 very cute little girls)
  • Basketball games for the boys on Saturday (they're starting to win some games and are getting their hands on the ball a lot more - good stuff)
  • Jared and I got to hang out with a bunch of Jazz players at a great fundraiser for Rising Star (the school for leperosy-affected children in India where much of my family has visited and served)
  • our whole family spoke in church yesterday (quite an ordeal getting not only a decent talk put together for ourselves but also for 5 kids - but they all did great and I think my talk was OK.  Jared did a beautiful job)
  • a birthday dinner and family party for Liza after church with my parents here
  • helping the kids get all their Valentines put together to pass out at school today
  • having a big talk with my mom about what to do about my sweet grandma who's really struggling and looking up resources to find a home caregiver for her
  • getting the table all decorated for a Valentine's breakfast this morning
Now today I've got to get the registration open for the big April Retreat, reorganize all the categories on Power of Moms for the new version of the website we're working away on launching, help the twins do their Valentines, go rock climbing as a family (we promised this to Liza for her birthday and to the twins for when they get their casts off - which finally happened - and it'll hopefully make a fun FHE/Valentine's activity).  We finally got Eliza's baptism scheduled for a couple weeks from now (after lots of stress around difficult schedules) but we still have to schedule when we're going to take Liza out for dinner for her special talk about how babies get made.  We've been talking it up and she's excited - but with so many special events going on, it's hard to create the perfect space for this important event (to read about this tradition, click here:  How to Talk to your Child About Sex).

Life doesn't get calm.  I've stopped hoping or expecting it to.  Why keep setting myself up for disappointment?

I have five kids.  I run two businesses.  My husband works a lot at a start-up with no guarantees.  I'm blessed to be involved in many things I love but that means for lots of juggling.  We spend lots of time at physical therapy appointments as we try to get the twins' heel cords stretched and as they re-learn how to walk using the right muscles (and we count our blessings that this is the first period of our lives that we've ever had to spend a lot of time involved in medical issues).  We have birthdays slammed up against holidays - that's just how it worked out.  And it's uncanny but predicable that sometimes many commitments end up on the same day at the same time. There are moments to catch my breath and snuggle on the couch with my husband to watch a 1/2 hour favorite show.  There are things I can and should say no to and I'm doing much better with this.

But I accept that life is busy and full and that things don't often work out just the way I might like.  We're often late.  Deadlines often have to be pushed back.  Sometimes I can't sleep or have crazy dreams because of everything going on.  And sometimes there are down-right disasters.  Sometimes I cry and sometimes I handle things really poorly and I'm not very nice to my husband and kids.

Each Sunday, I reassess, gear up for the crunch times I can see coming, and find some bright parts of the week to really look forward to (well, some Sundays this doesn't happen and then - watch out!).  I signed up for this (well, most of it) and there's a lot more good than bad.  We have way more blessings than worries (although it doesn't always feel that way).  Life is good.  Very good.  


shawni said...

I've just come to a similar conclusion: life doesn't get organized. maybe a little bit, but for the most part I just need to buck up and get things done. Love ya.

Tiffany said...

I love your honesty that you aren't ALWAYS nice to your husband and kids. Me either. It's nice to know I'm not alone... Hang in there! You're doing some great things.

Rebecca said...

Sometimes when people are trying to schedule things with me they ask if they should wait for things to slow down, but I tell them it NEVER slows down!

I'm crossing my fingers that Lucy doesn't have a meltdown when she realizes tomorrow morning that she never made a book for the Love Your Library contest. I am realizing we can't do it all :(

And I guess I need to read that article. I didn't realize it was time for the talk. . .

emily ballard said...

That was me. I guess my sister didn't log out :)

Chris said...

I recently gave birth to our fourth child and have been dreading going back to work. Reading this has made me feel a little bit stronger. It may get hectic working full time and keeping up with everything that goes with having children, but I love my life. Although there are times I wish I had more energy or time & money for a nice long aromatherpy massage.

Trent and Sarah Chapman said...

Reading that makes me want to take a nap! It doesn't help that I'm prego either cause I really do now take naps.

You amaze me Saren! You are just a go getter done type of woman. My oldest Reeghan will be getting baptized too as well as "the talk" come April/May time so I'm just taking part in just a smidge of what your doing. Take care.

Paige said...

Oh my goodness! You are amazing Saren! I am listening to your podcast and checking out all the amazing links on your blog. I have so much to learn from you!
So glad you moved to our ward (:
You're inspiring

Eyrealm said...

Truly, life doesn't calm down...but it does get different. Each new era brings new challenges and lots of fun! Hang in there baby!

Josh said...

That Jazz game you went to ended up being Jerry Sloan' last game coaching the Jazz after 23 years. If I'd have known it would be his last game (no one did), I would have flown up to go with you! Quite a historic event for Jazz fans.


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