Monday, September 26, 2016

I am catching up on blog posts.  Catherine's birthday was a hit, and seemed to go on for eternity this year.  I think it must have been because we took her birthday pictures early.  Trying to stay ahead of the game.  Catherine do I describe my little Cath.  

Zest for life
Life of the party
Character beyond
Cutie Cutie
Silly and Smart
Creative Thinker
Likes to think outside of the Box
Caring and protective of those she loves
Loves to teach (plays teacher every single day to Sam)
Bounce in her step
Bounce in her hair
Loves to dance and do cart wheels constantly as of late
Warm and loving
Easily entertained
Hard Working
Spunk and SPUNK

She has a lot of qualities I admire and am in awe of.  From the moment she was born she has been a light in my life.  Truly a little light, that can not be hid.  My little Cath turning 7.  

A preface to these pre - birthday party photos.  Catherine gets every bit as excited helping decorate for the party as she does to be at the party.  She had a list of decorations and activities for her party 3 months ago hidden in a secret spot.

In fact.... I tried to talk her out of  a party....but to no avail.  She has been scheming and talking for months.  Her list included:  flamingo decor, play bean boozled, swim, have a dance party, a craft, and a big pink cake!  Just a few...I had to cut the list.  

She wanted to invite EVERYONE to her party.  I decided that we should have a small intimate party (aka.... easy and calm).  Cath had a list of about a million people long she was determined to invite.  I told her she could invite 5 people.  "Just five Cath....that's all you need for an awesome party".  So we took around five little invitations to some of her closest friends.  

Well the birthday party came and went this afternoon and sure enough about 10 girls showed up.  Yep...not kidding.  10 girls SHE invited, and even given directions to....showed up to the party.  We all gave her a questioning look when they arrived, but she was confident as could be and lead the way. 

We swam despite small raindrops, had a dance party.....led by Catherine herself, did a craft, ate cake....but somehow managed to miss playing bean boozled.  She just walked in my little office while blogging to remind me.  Her little party mind never quite seems to shut off.  One of the many reasons we adore her.  

She had me take a million and one photos and had a million and one poses before the party even began..... and they were all too cute and CATH not to post!

Apparently her bestie.....

and bestie again....

Look of surpise....

In character.....I guess?....

confused  she is bunny......

look of questioning??
 Oh boy....there's more....

 and character....

the beauty pose......

ballet may be paying off?  Just not the hands.....:)

element of surprise.... dating till 18

and there we have it.  Cath and her 7th birthday party bash.....pre - crowd control.  

Our primary is so large in our church that instead of having one primary program they split it up into two programs.  One for the younger kids, and one for the older ones.  
This weekend was our primary program for the littles.  

I have to say it was probably one of my very most favorite primary programs I have been to.  Granted, I have been a bit emotional as of late.  But truly....these sweet kids are amazing.  There was such a strong spirit as 100...yes 100 junior primary kids each had a part and each had it memorized.  I was amazed.  


Life is full of ups and downs, inside outs, and who knows what in our lives around here as of late.   I have been humbled and stretched more than usual in my life.  This month has definitely been one of the more stretching times in my life.  

A few weeks ago I got a phone call on a Sunday morning.  It was the from my church asking me and my husband if we could come meet with the Bishop.  In our church everyone is a volunteer and callings are issued on a volunteer basis.  Each "calling" has different responsibilities.  It is one of the many things that I love about the church in which I belong.  There is need and responsibility for all within our church.  However, those who serve truly want to serve.  

I quickly threw on clothing, as did my husband and we headed to the church building.  The church building might I add is literally 100 feet away from my backyard.  But we still drive.  Another story for another day. There is a wall separating.  

I will never forget the look on the Bishops face when I walked through his door and we sat down.  My heart kind of sunk and I knew it was a calling for me that I already felt inadequate and overwhelmed by.  But still not expecting I was reluctant in feeling and spirit when he asked me to serve as Relief Society President.  

Basically that means I have an opportunity in my ward to work with 180 women on an intimate level and help in anyway that I can....with other women far more capable and more qualified than myself.  
I felt overwhelmed with the idea of service ahead.  

This is a preface to the second part of the day.  
I hurried home after church and was starving, starving.  

Mike and I have been going back and forth for years on whether or not we were done having more children.  I have felt like life is full and joyous and complete.  Mike.....wanting more!  I love kids!  I LOVE my kids beyond and more than anything in the world.  I have four healthy wonderful children.  We are finally at a point when Mike is actually home with us more.  He is done with medical training, and we are done using food stamps and WIC.  Life is good.  Like.....really gooD!

I must admit a haunting feeling has been prevalent in my life.  The kind of feeling like if I didn't have another child I might really regret.  It was as though EVERY time I looked at a newborn I was almost haunted by thinking.....never again.  

I got home from church and was starving.  I took a bite of turkey sandwich and looked at my husband.  I told him it was the best sandwich I had ever tasted.  He looked at me and replied "Jenn, it is just a turkey sandwich with mustard".  I then really looked at him, and he REALLY looked at me and said "shoot.....I need to take a pregnancy test".  

I mean I had slightly toyed with the idea of another baby.  I am not oblivious to the birds and the bees....but it was a very short time Mike and I were on the same page.  Almost a moment of time....I just thought I couldn't possibly be.......


I broke the sabbath.....ran to the dollar store and bought two tests.  I have bought every pregnancy test I have ever used at the dollar store and they all seem to work the same. 
I came home took the test....and 20 minutes before heading out the door to another church meeting yelled to Mike. "I AM PREGNANT".  

Yep....I am pregnant.  Shocking....yes.  Humbling....yes.  Excited.....of course .....right?? 

One thing I know.  I have felt more peace and comfort during the last few weeks not being haunted by the decision not to have another baby.  I know this is the plan for our family.  I am so thrilled beyond to be a mother yet again.  I am still quite early, and probably should not even be documenting for any public eyes to see.  But here we are in the raw from the beginning.  If I miscarry......I will write about it anyways I am sure.  Writing is therapeutic.  Life is real for all of us and especially for me right now. 

I have a good friend from my days of living in Washington DC whose husband just passed away.  She was planning a baptism one day and the next lost her husband.  Life is humbling, and life is fluid and constantly changing for each of us.  

I am so grateful for unrequited strength that I feel that I know comes from above.  This past weekend I was able to listen and watch the LDS church Relief Society Meeting.  I was more attentive than usual and took notes this time around.  I am in awe of the wisdom of those who spoke.  It made me want to increase my faith, and helped me understand agency more than I did before the conference.  I am grateful for big and little changes in my life. 

I sure had a few big ones happen in a few hours time.  My head has been reeling ever since, and time has been moving lighting bolt with new purpose.   

So there you have folks. 

The real deal.  Pregnant at 40.5.  

Monday, September 12, 2016


Catherine's birthday is coming up.  She turns the big SEVEN!  She has many nicknames in our family.  Cutie fitting! 

Friday, September 9, 2016

This was  a very last minute photo shoot.  Debbie (this beautiful girls Mom) is one of my dear friends.  We love the same things, and just clicked from the get go.  

Her daughter is getting baptized this week.  Debbie whipped up this floral head wreath for her daughter Shiloh in about 5 minutes flat....and wow!  She called me mid morning and last minute we threw together a joint effort photo shoot for her daughter, literally in between carpools for both of us.  One of the many reason why we are such good friends.  

These pictures....