Saturday, January 24, 2015

FHE 4 Life.

I like to be obedient. In first grade I peed my pants instead of going to the bathroom because the teacher said we could never go unless we asked and got the pass (how degrading is it to walk down a hall announcing your need to go to the bathroom) and the teacher was out of the room.  Thus, I carried my pee soaked pants around in a bag all day rather than break a rule.  However, some commandments I enjoy keeping more than others.  Some commandments I keep because they make sense (don't smoke, don't steal, don't kill people), other commandments I keep because I know there are blessings (fasting, family prayer, and visiting teaching), but some commandments I keep because they are fun. I would say the most fun commandment of them all to me is Family night.  I love it. I probably wouldn't invite the prophet to any of our FHE's because our reverence lessons are less than impressive but I wouldn't miss it.  Part of the reason they are so fun is because Liv thinks family night is better than a vacation. Not very many commandments include a mandatory treat.

Liv was in charge of lesson last week and I heard her in my room praying and saying, "Please help me do a good lesson about love and bless my barbies."  She spent more time setting up her station with her frozen microphone, getting a skirt on, putting up a table, and handouts the actual lesson itself but we were impressed with her prep.
2 weeks ago she was on treat. She was very disappointed because she loves to be on lesson or "joke" (whoever has this responsibility has to make up their own joke, the great news is Liv fake laughs no matter what you say).  I explained that we were taking a special trip to Walmart and she would be allowed to pick whatever she felt was best to fulfill her treat duty.  That seemed to change her mood.
She found a classy bright green salsa and chip holder and chose animal crackers, chocolate pretzels, and strawberry tooth rotting pop served in tea cups.
Grace was thrilled with the selection. 
I thought it was really classy that our salsa dish from the dollar store and the towel matched.  Spencer W. Kimball said,  "If eight things were present, we’d have a quality family home evening: a lesson, scripture reading, music, stories, an activity, prayers, refreshments, and a relaxed atmosphere with no criticism."   Sometimes I think the only part we are good at is the relaxed atmosphere but I still really like this tradition every week.   Since the girls have the attention span of a Walmart goldfish, our lessons are rarely longer than 3 minutes, our activities usually include bubbles, playdough, dancing to Frozen, or a wild game of go fish and I wouldn't say anyone weeps from an outpouring of the spirit but it is definitely a good time.
President Kimball also said, " "We cannot impress too much the importance of having family home evenings once a week....that you may be rewarded by a fulfillment of the promise that if fathers and mothers will discharge this responsibility, not one in a hundred of your family, as has been said by the leaders who have preceded us, would ever go astray."

Of course I don't want my gals to go astray but besides all the blessings and promises attached, there's really not a commandment I can think of that I enjoy more.   

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Content in 2015.

I had a a female festivus of chatting yesterday. It was so interesting to me since each one of them is in their own season and world doing whatever they do.  My sister Liza is 17 and started telling me all about her life and what was happening in high school.
 Then she said, "I just want your life. Your life is perfect." I immediately told her that I thought she was crazy because I would love to be 17 again.  That sounded glorious. Sleeping in until you can't sleep in any more and then doing whatever you want all day.  Your biggest stress is who is going to ask you to homecoming and getting your absences excused.  When its dinner time you just come walk down to the table and just like magic, dinner is waiting. Friends are your world and finding something fun on Friday night is the only thing you would need to write in a planner (but you don't even need a planner).

When you need money, you ask your mom. You have no idea what car insurance costs, no need to clean anything but your room that is covered in clothes from your morning stress of trying to pick the right outfit.  No car seats. No nursing bras. No puking kids in the night. Your whole life is in front of you just sitting there like a massive blob of playdough waiting for you to make and go and do whatever you choose.
After we hung up I just thought how easy and fun it would be to be 17 all over again.   Right after she called, my 86 year old grandma called.  Now there is no proper way to explain how delightful this woman is unless you meet her.  She's one of the most attentive listeners you will ever know and has the best sense of humor.
She was telling me how mad she was that her doctor wasn't listening to her when she wanted to chat and how she knows we are made to self destruct but "nuts to that" because she doesn't want to be old. She told me how she was trying to convince her doctor that she had dementia but he kept insisting that she didn't. She was telling me how inconvenient it is to have to get up to go to the bathroom 5 times a night and how boys are terrible at sharing details and it makes her so peeved. I thought how nice it would be though to just be able to get senior discounts, eat out every night, go on trips and just hang out at your house all day with no obligations or screaming babies. 
A few hours later I had just a few seconds on the phone with my mom who was in the middle of a huge stressful work project and couldn't talk  and said she doesn't have a minute to sit down to and relax because of all the people that depend on her and the things that she has to do.

For a second,  I felt jealous that I don't get to work anymore and feel important or that people need me and that my work involves pouring marshmello mateys and watching sesame street instead of working with adults and feeling like you are making a contribution.  I felt a bit jealous that she can go to the grocery store without having children climbing on her and can make her own schedule.
Talking to Em happens more frequently than scripture study in my life.  I always love to hear the details of her world.  She was showing me on face time the emery boards, the tucks pads and the receiving blankets that are all organized in preparation for the new babe that is due anytime. She was telling me about a conversation she had with her husband and showed me her boy (whom I adore), and talking in full sentences as they ate their nutritious healthy lunch .  Think of every good mother you've ever met and then roll that into one person and times it by a zillion and then you will be in the ballpark of the kind of mother my sister Em is. It blows my mind. Every time.

 After I hung up I just wished so bad that I could be the kind of mom that my sister is and have the perfect flawless fun marriage that I always imagine she has.

I then got a text from my sister in law Bethany who is married and has no kids yet and it wanting to go to Europe this year. I thought, "Sheesh, I'm looking forward to going to Costco as my highlight this week. I wanna go to Europe!"

 Finally it was time to put my best friend and side kick to bed. Every night after prayers, stories and teeth brushing we have time where I climb on her bunk bed and we just "talk about the day". We discuss what was our favorite highlights, what we didn't like and what we want to do tomorrow.
In the middle of our conversation she said very concerned, "Mom, can you tell me who I am going to marry? Do I marry dad like you or do I get a different one? I want to know his name."  I have no idea why she was worried about finding her eternal mate but it was such strange thought to me to realize that one day Liv would be married and have girls of her own too.   So many women. So many stages of life.

 What I felt bothered about was how many times during the day I wanted to be in a different stage of life, trade in who I was to be someone else,  or get my money back and a refund on my current challenges and season of life.

I found a book that I had bought awhile ago and started to read it. Within the first 3 pages there were a quote that rang so true to my soul that I am putting it up in my bathroom to read every day. It's by Marjorie Hinckley:

"We women have a lot to learn about simplifying our lives.  We have to decide what is important and then move along at a pace that is comfortable for us.  We have to develop the maturity to stop trying to prove something.  We have to learn to be content with what we are."

It's nothing extremely deep but I know that needs to be who I am this year. Every stage, every season, every woman has things that they want to be different. I need to learn to be content with where and who I am. Because who I have with me in all my stages really is a gift.

Later in the book Marjorie said, "Fifty was my favorite age.  It takes about that long to learn to quite competing, to be yourself and settle down to living.  It is the age I would like to be through all eternity!"  

I don't need to wait to be 50 to settle down to living. I need to do that now. It is a new year after all. Who knew Marjorie would know the key to my 2015 success?

Monday, January 5, 2015

Our not so hot hot day....

Grace is sick. She threw up on Christmas vacation but after our night of sleeping in barf chunks, I thought she was better...and then she got pneumonia so we had a lock down day of germs. We tried to make the "cloud dough" from pinterest that supposedly was soft and life changing but all it did was dye Liv's hands bright blue and felt like snot and cornstach mixed together. It's what we call a complete pinterest bust.
So we spent the rest of the day rotting our brains watching PBS kids, sipping juice and doing photo shoots of Liv's princess collection:
(Is it just me or is Rapunzel's hair frozen at a really awkward direction? There's no way any hairspray could keep it like that.)

Technically this goes ON things like waffles or bread, but it was the kind of day where I just resorted to sticking a spoon right in and going wild. It was the highlight of the day. If you don't have a jar of this in your house this minute, you need some. It is life changing. We were wasting the day of our mortal probation just fine when the door knocked...

We were in no state to be accepting visitors of any kind. Grace was naked with juice and pink amoxicillin stains on her cheeks, Liv was still rocking her smurf hands from the cloud dough disaster and I was makeup less, bra less, shower free and basically the stereotype of everything that someone imagines when they say, "She really let herself go".  I took a picture for proof (I'm not one of those women that says, "Sorry my house is so messy" and then pick up the one invisible crumb on the corner of the rug. When I say my house is messy, it looks like a garage sale vomited. When I say I looked disgusting, I mean I look like Quasimodos cousin):

So I was opened the door a crack hoping that whoever it was wouldn't be able to fully view the fact that I looked like a homeless woman with my naked blue handed children.  I saw I woman I did not recognize who looked extremely startled and then awkwardly asked, "Um, hi, I am looking for Garret's hot hot wife?"

I just stared back wondering what she could be talking about because I was Garretts wife but I was most definitely not hot, let alone two hots. After a few seconds,  I realized she was the postman (woman) and she held out a box to clarify.  Then we both had a very good laugh together when I said, "Well can't you tell it's me by how hot I am?"

Whenever I have magazines or boxes delivered to the house I always write in a name that is either embarrassing or awkward or exotic and the package of the day I had just so happened to enter my name as, "Garrett's hot hot wife" on my Amazon order.

The moral of this story is don't believe the Pinterest cloud dough recipe, and don't write your name as a title on packages that you can't fulfill. I'm hoping next time I can live up to whatever I've written and the post woman can recognize who it is for....

Seibold Style Family Christmas...

Some people tolerate their in laws like they do baking soda in their know it's probably good for you although, not pleasant or something to look forward to.  I have no such baking soda toothpaste feelings.  I hit the in law jack pot.  I mean, marrying Garrett was the best scam I've ever pulled, but the bonus is that all his siblings are some of my favorite people on this planet.  In case you don't know them, let me show you what you missed...
 In case you were curious, passenger's legs also transform into a diaper changing table at 70 mph. The more you know.
The girls passed out from excitement and eager anticipation on our trip down...
What better way to kick of the trip than a trip to Wally's palace? It would be one of about 19 trips there over the course of our extended stay.
Kerry always gets so excited when I come.  When you have a model for a sister in law it's important to document all less than model like faces for posterity.
Uncle Tay was the equivalent of Chuck E Cheese and provided hours of entertainment for the kid club.
Christmas eve was a hit with a program, a "talent" show (and I use the word talent loosely here), and a white elephant gift exchange.
Sharky remained preserved as the ultimate gift and made her way to Bruce for a safe haven....until the next gift exchange in 2016. Hopefully she will last that long. Her eyeball is creepy.

The shock factor game was a new introduction which the girls were not to anxious to play and Tanner took home the prize with the basketball glasses all time high score. 

Liv really hated Christmas morning....

Kody does an accurate depiction of the internal Christmas morning emotion (Seibolds are all very proficient about internal emotional expression, any external displays of excessive emotion or expression are as rare as a warm Michigan winter).  Everyone was obviously very good because there were gifts galore.
Followed by the ever classic, legendary Seibold tradition rounds and rounds breakfast. Don't even consider in your wildest breakfast dreams calling these pancakes. They are in an completely different phylum.  Just ask.

The male dominated Seibold society looked precious in their matching pajamas.
Frozen was well represented by each female family member of the next generation.
The rest of the days were spent swimming in undiluted holiday cheer and family festivus with a casserole of childrens museums, snowmobiling, crater playing, jumpoline action, games galore, swimming, lurping around, shopping,  gun shooting, wii, football watching, and talking (with minimal sharing of feelings of course).

 Dyl's moustache is always classy.
 Kneaders dessert night. 2 of the greatest grafted branches on the family tree...

 After shattering the glass table jewelry display at the front of the store...

 Sugar Plum fairies unleashed...

 Shop fest.

 Late night Wendy's date. Traditions must be observed and all times and in all things and in all places.

 I will never celebrate a holiday without Chinese lanterns again. Where have I been? The Chinese think of everything good... food, nintendo and now these babies.

 Tay doesn't like to put his arms around Kerry if she is wearing a snuggie...

There's nothing more to say other than if you weren't in Heber City with the Seibolds for Christmas, you missed out. Big time. There are still 3 single Seibold men left which are the last three golden tickets to get in this family so don't miss your chance of a lifetime.  I love Christmas and I love family so the it was the perfect combo meal for "the most wonderful time of the year". 

This is how I felt when it ended.