Easter Sunday was uplifting and quiet. Not quiet like the way you would normally assume – I’ve got 5 kids and we met up with extended family. The volume of the noise was definitely not quiet. But it was a reflective day and even during the evening, as the sun tucked behind the horizon, I watched the kids play with their cousins and continue to explore their newly found eggs, I was quiet. I was in my “thin place” as I observed all that was going on around me but didn’t feel the need to participate or be in conversation to enjoy it.
I am grateful for those quiet moments in a loud world. I am grateful for Easter and all that we’ve studied as a family as we prepared for this special holiday. I’m grateful for my Savior and His atoning sacrifice for all my shortcomings and fears and worries…and everything else I’m willing to unload on Him. It’s been a good week and Sunday was the culmination of it all.
These kids are learning that the faster they smile and take a nice picture, the sooner they can run off and play. It’s taken a while to get to this point and Briggs is still learning the ropes.
Steve’s brother and sister-in-law have hosted Easter for years and I’m so happy every year that they’re willing to do it again. They make it nice and elegant (which can be hard for a crowd our size) and the setting always fosters great conversations. Whether they be lighthearted and laughing or personal and introspective. I usually get pictures of all the tables – this year I got this shot. Hallie has made it to the older kids table and she played it cool – and didn’t spill anything! 😉
Briggs found an egg, yep – only one! Once he found that egg and shook it he realized it contained candy. There was no convincing him of hunting eggs after that. He was happy with the candy in his hand.
We’re happy to have Steve’s parents home from another mission in Africa. Here are some of the grandkids – including two “grandkids” that married into the family and one great grandbaby.
Most weekends leave me exhausted with a wrecked house – this weekend was different. Yes, my house is more wrecked than usual and it will take me most of tomorrow to get it back in order, but we had such great and uplifting weekend.
It started with Good Friday and our kids were out of school. We were mindful to spend time being active as a family and with friends as we prepared for a weekend of “church on TV” as our kids call it, our semi-annual general conference. But this general conference was just a little different because it fell on Easter – which is unusual.
Saturday morning the Easter bunny showed up right on schedule much to the delight of our kids. (We’ve done the Easter bunny on Saturday for years – this gives us the opportunity to really focus on Jesus Christ on Sunday morning instead of the gifts and candy. It works for us!)
Saturday we spent a lot of time watching/listening to conference. The kids did great and were engaged for some of the time. It’s a long time for our littles but I can see as they grow older, like Hallie, they start to take an interest in the TV that’s on and not just play around it.
In between sessions we’d take advantage of playing and riding bikes and seeing friends. We prepped food for Sunday and quite enjoyed the day. Today was even better. The talks that were given spoke to me – I could feel them deep in my heart. My love and understanding of the Savior increased as well as my desire to reach out and help those around me. This can be overwhelming thinking of all the people that are in need of help – but I can work within my circle of influence and hopefully make a difference for someone in need.
And to top off this beautiful Easter Sunday we gathered with extended family. It was a beautiful evening and the perfect ending to an inspiring weekend. Bring on Monday!
My lettering practice this week was focused on Easter.
This quote by Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin has to be one of my all-time favorite quotes. I find myself repeating…Sunday will come.
We had our annual Ridge Run neighborhood party last weekend and the weather cooperated beautifully. This annual event always coincides with Easter so when Easter is later in the year we’re fighting the heat. We biked/ran/walked the three miles and yet I don’t have proof of it. We ate a delicious breakfast – and again no proof. But the egg hunt – yep – I got plenty of pictures!
I’ve had a cold for over a week now. Sunday night as I went to bed I could feel the pressure build and suddenly my face hurt and my teeth hurt. I knew immediately I had a sinus infection. I called first thing in the morning to go the doctor. After getting a price for the visit from my primary care doctor I called the urgent care next to my house. The urgent care was almost half the cost of the doctor’s visit. There is something so wrong with this system. But I’m overly grateful for a steroid shot that gave immediate relief and antibiotics to fight it off. It still feels like I need a root canal but the pain is starting to decrease.
We’ve started looking for a new family car. Steve and I are not car people and we go for affordable older cars – its still a discouraging process. I’m glad we only do it every 8 years! The process is complicated because there’s only one car I’m looking for – so finding the right mileage in our price range may take some time. The process is further complicated when I drive the potential cars and realize just how much I love my car and I don’t want to get rid of it. It runs great but it’s those long road trips to Idaho every year that make Steve a little nervous. We’ll see if we can find something.
When my dad was in town we finally installed a ladder to the playhouse (we’ve always had a ladder leaning up against the playhouse – just not a ladder that was screwed into place). Suddenly, all the kids want to be in the playhouse. They spent this week cleaning it up and blowing all the dirt out and making it their own little space. They did their homework in it after school. I’m glad their using it, the forecast this week shows a lot of 90 degree days – their playhouse days are numbered!
Speaking of warmer weather – it’s getting warm enough that my warm fleece robe is coming out less and less. (My robe infatuation was divulged on the blog when my husband surprised me by writing a post!) – Before long I’ll trade it in for my summer robe!
Kids and Toys
I think it’s interesting to see what toys little kids gravitate towards. We’ve had a lot of the same toys for years and years and every kid plays differently. Just when I think I can get rid of toys, I see a kid start to gain interest in it. Briggs likes little toys that fit in his hands – precisely one in each hand. It’s typically cars or action figures/little people. We’ve had a box of little people since Hallie was a baby. Briggs has the most interest in them and its nothing more than to carry them around and play on whatever surface he pleases.
I had one of those cooking fiascos that you just have to laugh about. It was Sunday morning and Steve was gone. I thought I would be a Betty and make some muffins. It had been years since I had made bran muffins and I absolutely love them so I figured it was a good time to dust off the recipe. They call them 6 week bran muffins because it makes a ton of batter and can be put in the fridge for several weeks as you them when you need them. I found my largest bowl and got to work. Of course there were several interruptions – including fighting kids. After I got kids separated in different rooms I returned to the recipe and added liquid. It was so full it was hard to stir. After all the buttermilk was poured in the batter didn’t look like I remembered. It was much runnier. It took me about 5 seconds to realize I needed a quart of buttermilk, not a half gallon. I didn’t have enough of some of the ingredients to double the batch. I didn’t even have a big enough bowl.
Of course Steve walks in the door right as I’m trying to figure what I can do to salvage the muffins. We borrow something from the neighbors and find more bran by picking out raisins from our raisin bran. Was it perfect…far from. But it was salvaged and the kids didn’t even know I screwed it up and surprisingly they’re all big fans of bran muffins. At least the recipe they’ve tried which is not exactly like the recipe that will be made in the future. Sometimes you just need to laugh at yourself.
This week is special as we focus on the final week of the Savior’s life. Last week we saw the Easter Pageant at the Mesa temple which is always my favorite way to start this season. Last Sunday at church we heard talks of repentance and forgiveness. And this week we’re talking as a family about the final events leading up to His crucifixion and resurrection. As Steve likes to say, “It’s a big week.”
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