I grew up in a small town (pop. 4000) in central California. Lots of farms, lots of dairies. In fact, my dad works with nuts. My parents are wonderful and as they approach 40 years of marriage they are such an example to me. I have four younger brothers (yep, the only girl!) which meant that it wasn't uncommon for my Barbie's to lose their heads or get buried in the backyard.
After graduating from high school at age 16 I went straight to college at Brigham Young University. I had the time. of. my. life. Made some great friends, soon decided to major in Nutritional Science, and . . .
. . . . as I was finishing up my sophomore year I met Scott (an Idaho boy).
We definitely felt like we were living a charmed life.
We both graduated from BYU in 2000 and followed a job to Portland, Oregon. And this is where our family started to grow.
First came Conner, with a happy and enthusiastic spirit . . . Soon came Payton, with his squishy cheeks, adorable sense of humor, and aversion to sunlight . . . And finally Anna, our loud, outgoing, full of personality little girl.
In 2002 we moved to a small town (pop. 10,000) and purchased our first home. Scott continued to commute to work in Portland. I dove into hobbies like scrapbooking (and was even published about a dozen times in magazines like Creating Keepsakes and Simple Scrapbooks), decorating, throwing parties, and photography. But most of all I immersed myself in motherhood and trying to "delight in the everyday."
In 2011 Scott accepted a new job in Las Vegas. So after 12 years of living in Oregon we moved our family to Nevada in March 2012. From lush forests to desert, from a small town to a big town, from a wonderful circle of friends to not knowing a soul . . . . . it has meant a lot of changes for our family!
You can read about our year of moving HERE. Yes, it took a whole year to get settled. We moved into our new (to us) home in October 2012 and couldn't be more relieved!
Our kids are getting older - 9, 11, and almost 14 - and we realize that we are wayyy out of the baby and toddler stage. Nap-times, diapers, car seats, and Cheerio snacks are a distant memory. But I feel like I lived that stage well, I was present, and I enjoyed the moments while I was in it. And now we are enjoying a new stage!
With one in elementary school and two in middle school we are starting to feel like those "grown-up" parents we used to look up to when we were just starting out. Ha! There is definitely a level of calm that comes 14 years into parenting. Oh yes, there are still those mind-numbing, pull your hair out moments -- I always say that parenting doesn't get easier it just gets different. New levels of intensity as you tackle life skills vs. napping skills. But we have our traditions, our family systems & rules & expectations set in place, we joke and play and travel, and we just enjoy each other.
There is a line of a children's song at church that I just love:
"God gave us families to help us become what He wants us to be.
This is how He share His love, for the family is of God."
That is so true. Life, motherhood, marriage, all of it is helping me become what He wants me to be. And I'm so thankful that my Heavenly Father loves me enough to let me experience it all.