April 24, 2017

Dads matter

Almost a decade ago on a flight to Utah. I met a woman that greatly impacted my life. To me she seemed young and pretty(she had life figured out, I thought). She had recently become an empty nester. During the 2 hour flight we talked. I don't remember everything discussed but I do remember her telling me that if you wanted your husband to be involved in your children's lives you had to act. She told me that unless I insisted my future husband won't have a relationship with my future children.

At that point in my life, I had recently graduated high school and was moving to Utah to hopefully get into college. I was definitely not thinking that far into the future. I was 18. I was applying to college and I did not have any prospects for a husband.... I was a kid.
Yet this lovely lady was giving me advise that I wouldn't need for many years to come. To her it must have just been a nice conversation but it meant the world to me. A stranger that wanted me to succeed in life.

Fast forward though college, marriage, a kid, many apartments and a few jobs. And that advise is ever more present. My husband has always been a great help. As I see my daughter getting older, I can see why that advise I received so long ago matters. When children are young they need you for everything. Yet a time comes when they don't need your help as much, they do most things on their own, they are ready to go to school and make friends of their own.

At this stage it is easy to forget that your kids no longer need a nanny to change their diapers and feed them. They need a loving relationship with their mother and father. It seems easier for a lot of mothers because they are home, they check homework and answer questions. But what about their fathers? They don't seem as needed. Their wives have it all handled, all they need to do is work and provide for their families.

Children need more than that they need a loving father to listen to them, to show them love, to play with them, someone to point them in the right direction. When a kid enter school they are all nerves and excitement. And they want to share it with those people that matter most in their lives. Their mother and father but what happens when parents are to busy or not available. Those loving children learn to not trust. They learn not to share their feelings because they were never heard before.

So I invite you to listen to your children. What they say may not be important to you but it means the world to your little one.

April 21, 2017

We Need Each Other

In todays world we take care of ourselves. Some may be lucky enough to have close friends and family to rely on but most people are left to struggle alone. We convince ourselves that we don't need help and that we can't ask for help. Why?

Where did the "it takes a village to raise children" mentality go? Why are people expected to go it alone? Life is impossibly hard and we were never meant to go at it alone. We were born into families, some better than others, and in most groups we are expected to marry and have families of our own. Why? Because we need each other, and not just a spouse and children but the grandparents, the aunts and uncles, the cousins. It gives a connection that matters and can never be taken from us.

And now you say what if I don't have family? You have neighbors, coworkers, church members and you have a community. The days of knowing your neighbors and actually relying on them are long gone it seems. And yet your neighbors are still there and it might surprise you that they also are searching for a connection.

In high school I remember new people going to church and I was one of the first people to reach out, especially in Young Women's. It was always interesting to see what would happen afterwards. These girls would go to something and I'd sit with them and the next time the others girls would reach out as well. Until that moment they hadn't felt the need but because I acted they wanted to act as well.

Connections are important to our health, when we feel lonely and isolated, depression sets in, you may even lose focus of your objectives in life. Don't let that happen.

I invite you to reach out. I try to reach out a lot, because I need it. I realize that I can't change things for everyone but I can in my little community. I can try to be there for those that may need it. My Grandma recently told me of a women where she lives that has a large porch were she sets out rocking chairs that she has painted and even named. This women has coffee going just in case someone needs a place to go. A place where relief is found and their daily struggles can be forgotten if only for a while. A place where women can find a connection and comfort.

April 14, 2017

Easter Party Prep.

Is it just me or is it nerve racking to know you are having a large group of people show up at your doorstep expecting to be feed and entertained? Yikes!

Tomorrow that will be me.

Thankfully they have all accepted to help out with the food but still just knowing can be very overwhelming and I thought I would write out some ideas to make the day go smoothly.

1. To start out with, do what you can the day or even week before. Shopping, decorating, set-up and if possible make the food in advance.

2. Make sure everyone gets an invitation. It sounds so simple but for our wedding breakfast we had all the immediate family, except we forgot to invite two people(Sorry! We still love you.)

3. Delegate. It is so easy to want to do it all by yourself but for your own sanity let everyone pitch in, especially for clean-up.

4. Relax. This is your party too, and if you aren't having fun then your guest probably aren't either.

5. And lastly, schedule time for yourself. With everything going on it is easy to still be wearing your pj's when the first people knock. So take the time to relax and get ready for the party!

Good luck to all those brave people hosting Easter parties this weekend!

P.S. Take the time to remember why we celebrate this holiday. All the bunnies and Easter eggs hunts are fun but there is so much more to Easter. Namely the Resurrection of Our Savior Jesus Christ.

April 11, 2017

To try or not to try

We live in a world where everyone around us seems to be the best at something or other. We see women who work full time and then come home to take care of their children. We see people that volunteer their time, those that always seem to have a lot of friends. We see the best side of people and seeing that side keeps us from doing what we really want to do.

So...what do you want to do? Should you not try just because someone might be better. Or even worse do you fear going that extra step. If you don't try you will never fail....

Not the case because of regret. Someday you will wonder what have I done with my life. I mean sure you might have a great job, a wonderful family, great friends but have you ever gone out of your comfort zone to try something you might completely and utterly fail at? Scary....

I think there is merit in trying. You might end up finding something you love and that is that best reason to try. How many of us have thought of being some famous person, whether in sports, t.v. , movies, writing, or even in politics. To be that one person everyone knows. The dreams are glamorous but the work that would lead you there is not glamorous. It is the daily small things that will make the biggest differences.

I love to write but I feel inadequate that could stop me. I'm sure I have grammar errors and I'm not very structured in my writing but I try and I love it. And that is enough.

Try something new and do what you love especially when you aren't the best.