dear porter,

it's memorial day.
a day we are supposed to remember our lost, loved ones.
but i guess that makes everyday memorial day for me.

your headstone is all done.
i've only seen pictures.
i would be there at the cemetery to see it,
to visit you, if i could.
give grandpa a hug for me.
i'll be thinking of you guys.

i dreamed about you the other day.
you were wearing miles' helmet
and doing his sniffing-face-tantrum.
and i laughed and laughed.
and you kept going to leave
but i begged you to stay just a little longer.
so you did.
please come again soon.

love you.


i'm allergic to my husband.

i recently went in for my yearly check up with the doc.  she was asking me if i was taking any medications, and i said, "yes, just loratadine." and she said, "oh? what are you allergic to?"  and i told her i didn't know.  i just itch like crazy if i don't take it.  like a crazy person who can't contain themself and would probably like to rip their hair out and scratch their skin until they bleed.  and she said, "wouldn't you like to know what you're allergic to?"  and i decided that after taking that medicine for 2 years, it was time i figure out what exactly was causing me to be so itchy.

so i was told not to take my medicine for a whole week. a whole week.
i did, indeed, turn into a crazy person.  i think if you were to ask me the worst torture you could give to a human, i would say itching.  i'd rather give birth 13,234 more times than go a whole week without my medicine.  and when the morning of my testing came, i was never more excited to go to the doctor than i have been in all my life.  let me rephrase that.  it was the only time i have ever been excited to go to the doctor.

the conversation went as follows:
dr. lady allergy specialist: when did this start?
me: oh...about 2 years ago.
dr. lady allergy specialist: did anything change in your life? did you move or get pets or start a new diet??
me: umm....does my husband count as a pet? i got married.
dr. lady allergy specialist: oh really? did you ever, you know... before you got married?
me: nope.
dr. lady allergy specialist:  wow! ok. well then i definitely think you are allergic to your husband.
me: um, what?

she tested me for food allergies anyway.  even though she was already convinced that wade was the source of all my problems.  and the conclusion of all my poking and prodding...

i am allergic to 
my husband
(we are entering t.m.i. territory and we will leave it at that)


i have 2 options here.  never come close to my husband ever again.  and never eat chicken ever again.  we all know this will never happen because, quite frankly, i like chicken almost as much as i like my husband.  and so, i will continue to take my allergy medicine every day of my life.  but at least now i know why, right?


cooper on cooper st.

when we first found our apartment in the north end, we walked past this sign and i got so excited.  a cooper street! and my brother's name is cooper! he just so happened to be on his mission in pennsylvania while i was living there. but i walked past that street almost everyday and thought of him everytime. and i was so excited for the day that he would come visit me and get to see his street.  so this my friends, was a dream come true.  (i know, i know. i have silly dreams.)

his first train ride

here is miles on his very first train ride! (or the "T" as it is known in boston)  taking the orange line to haymarket, on our way to the north end with cooper and brittany.  i'm pretty sure i get more worked up about these things than he does.  i mean, who are we kidding?  he has no idea what's going on, except that his mom is getting all excited and worked up and taking pictures.  he probably didn't even know he was underground. or on a fast moving train. or that if his stroller didn't have breaks on it, he'd go flying.  but i got pictures, and when's he's old enough, i will tell him about the time he was so brave and rode the train like a big boy.

and i guess, since it was their first train ride too....
here's a picture of cooper and miss brittany.


don't worry

i have been feeling nauseated the past few days.
and after today, i thought, "what the heck? this seems a little familiar."
and i started to get a little worried.
{i guess there's always that 1% chance right?}
i had an extra pregnancy test, because the last one i used came in a 2 pack.
so i took it.
and i a little bit freaked out.
because i read it wrong.
don't worry. i'm not pregnant.
but i really thought for about 3 minutes that i actually was.
and i started to panic.
and i almost woke wade up.
but i googled real quick.
and everything is ok.
and i breathed a huge sigh of relief.
then i got sad.
and wished that maybe it really was positive.

but then i remembered what a handful this little guy is.
and how he is teething and how his whining is about to put us in a crazy house.
and i think i am quite content to not have another baby for a long, long time.


2 peas in a pod.


days until we move home.  i'm thinking i will make a paper chain to count down.  but my mom might have done that already.

i fear that maybe in the past two years, i have come across as a boston hater.  um?  this may be true, for several reasons that have been clearly covered on numerous occasions.  i would just like to publicly declare that i do not hate boston. i love it's architecture and it's charm and it's greenery and it's quaint little roads. and i love being so close to the beach and cute little new england towns.  yes, i will miss it.  but i will not miss it enough to ever wish i still lived here.  i'm grateful for the experience and i am better for it.

i also, in the past two years have probably seemed a little obsessed with utah.  after all, it is the land of snow cone shacks, dollar movie theaters, costa vida, case lot sales, the rocky mountains, parking lots and walmarts on every corner. i was thinking the other day about why i'm so in love with utah and i came up with a lot of reasons why i shouldn't be in love with utah.  a lot of reasons why any outsider would probably never choose to live there if they had a choice. and it hit me.  utah is my home.  it's my roots.  it's where i came from and it's what i know, and therefore, it feels like the place i belong.  but mostly, it's where my family is.  i want my baby to grow up with his grandparents around.   i want to watch the office with my brothers.  i want to play card games at the kitchen table.  i want to eat sunday dinner.   i want to make memories in person, and not over webcam.  {the cheap rent is just the icing on the cupcake.}

also-have you heard the news?! i might just be behind the times here, but remember something corporate? only the greatest band on the face of the planet {besides, like 3 others. it's a tie}.  well they broke up a long time ago and i was so sad. but now i am so happy because they are getting back together. and hello! they are going on tour this summer. and guess who is going.  yes. i am.  with my best friend tiff.  and just because i am old and married and have a baby does not mean i can't live like my old glory days when i went to concerts every weekend.  it just means i have to get a babysitter. {um? mom? k thanks.}

dear lost,

you have successfully fried my brain.

love, me



this is miles' chosen position of sleep lately.
i think it has something to do with his helmet.
he used to be a back sleeper
{which is what the doc recommends these days...}
but the helmet made it hard for him to sleep.
so we let him borrow a pillow.
and that thing he is in between?
its supposed to stop him from rolling over.
and now he he just cuddles right up to it.

i just love his gigantic feet and his elbow dimples.

for grandma

i think, as a mother, i might be the only one who finds this adorable.
but grandmas think stuff like this is adorable too.
wade took miles to the park.
i am in heaven when he does this.
and then he comes home with hilarious pictures/videos of my child and i'm sad i stayed home.
apparently miles got hot, so naturally, wade stripped him of his clothing {and helmet. oops.}

p.s. notice the laughing of the passer-bys.


the north end {holgas}

our old stomping grounds.
i miss them.


meet holga

this is holga.
she is my mother's day present.
{miles did a very good job.}
a film only camera.
made out of plastic.
with lots of light leaks.
it's basically a piece of junk.
but thats the beauty of holga.
you never know what you're going to get.
{let's just say my last roll of 36 exp. only had 4 good shots}
but i still love her.


wake up call

losing a family member was always something that happened to other people.  i've watched those other people go through it.  i've seen how sad it is. i've even contemplated what it would be like.  i believed that if i was the one faced with death, i would be mad.  angry.  depressed.  i thought there was no way you could go through something like that and still keep living a normal life.  i thought that those people who did keep living {a maybe not so normal life anymore, but living, nonetheless} were amazing and strong.  but i never, in a hundred million thousand years thought it would happen to me.  but, it did happen. it happened to me. and it happened to my mom and my dad and my two sweet brothers.  a ridiculous, freak accident took away my brother.  

unannounced. suddenly. with no warning.
i didn't even get to say good-bye.

and i have been mad. and angry. and depressed.  i have kept on a living {a maybe not so normal life, but living, nonetheless}.  and i have felt the amazing strength that comes from friends and family and the comfort that comes from the truth of the gospel.  and now i know how other people got through it.  because you really have no other choice but to keep on keepin' on.

it doesn't change the fact that every morning i wake up and think to myself my little brother is dead.
and then i think about it over and over and try to remember if i was just dreaming, or if he really, truly is gone.

and some mornings i am convinced it was a dream.

until i walk in the kitchen and see his picture on the fridge and a flood of memories come rushing into my mind. and i think about the awful month of march. and how hard every single day was. and i realize it really wasn't a dream.  and now i've recently realized that i have been living in fear ever since that day.  because i used to believe that never, in a hundred million thousand years, would it happen to me.  but it did happen to me.  which makes my biggest fear a reality.  it's not just something that happens to other people anymore.  it's something that can happen to me.

everytime wade leaves for school, i wonder if i will ever see him again.
when miles is sleeping, i wonder if i will find him not breathing when i check on him.
i worry that i will get a phone call telling me my mom has cancer.
or that my dad got hurt at work.
or that my brothers got in a car accident.

i'm aware this is all very depressing.
but on march 5, i feel like i received a wake up call,
from an annoying telemarketer that just keeps on calling.


motherhood #15

this is the last the last of them. thanks everyone who sent me such wonderful words.  i loved reading every single one of them. you all are beautiful women.
by Paige:

i'm not a mother myself, yet. so what comes to mind when i hear the word "motherhood" is my own mom. i have the best relationship with her, and always have. {even through the dreaded teenage years}. which yes, makes me her favorite. so i only have the best things to say about her.
my mom is a champ. she birthed 8 of us... who wouldn't be a champ after having to raise all of us banchies? :) but this is a woman who is the prime example of every aspect of the word mother. she's loving. she's self-less. she's compassionate. she's understanding. she's hard-working. she's ever-so-talented. she's hilarious. she has a way of making you feel that no matter how hard the situation is, everything is going to be okay. and although the list goes on and on, what is most important to me about my mom is that she has a testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and she lives it. my mom has endured so many trials in her life that i cant even count them, but her faith and her courage have never waivered.
i know that i wont understand the real sacrifice it takes to be a mother until i have my own children, but i know that i want to be exactly the kind of woman, and mother, that she is.
i love you mom. 

 {paige's family on her wedding day}

we go to church in the ghetto.

once upon a time,
my dear husband left his scriptures/books on the top of the car
as he was loading miles into his car seat.
then he drove away.
we didn't realize this until 20 minutes late when a biker-dude pulled up next to my window
and started screaming at me.
i was afraid.
but he was just being neighborly
{like mr. rogers, only on a harley}
unfortunately, the biker dude only saw the gospel principles book up there.
the scriptures were long gone.
so we turned around to go find them.
i mentioned we go to church in the ghetto right?
well we came to an intersection and i got out to look.
my husband proceeded to drive away.
because the light turned green, of course!
abandoning me, in my church clothes, and looking very out of sorts.
even some people from church drove by and stopped.
{"um....are you okay?"
"yeah. my husband just left me here on this corner..."}
its okay.
we were eventually reunited.
he came back for me.
but i was plotting my own kidnapping while i waited.
it was awesome.
apparently he was parked at dunkin' donuts the whole time.
chalk one up for miscommunication.

p.s. this reminds me of the time i lost my little brother in nyc.
i am a great sister, promise. story to come...


look who came to visit!

 boston harbor

we've spent the week hangin' with mr. cooper and his lovely girlfriend, miss brittany.
so happy they were here.
{miles has a serious crush on brittany.
he stares at her all day.
and stops crying whenever he looks at her.}
we had many adventures, which i will be sure to post.
but i think their tired feet and sore calves are glad to be back in utah,
where i'm not there to walk them into the ground.
{boston is called the walking city...
but i'll admit, it took me a year to get used to it.
what am i saying?! i'll never get used to it.
and i don't have to. because guess who just reserved a moving truck today.
did you guess me? because that would be right.}

go right ahead

and call my baby "helmet head"...
but if you do, i'll probably beat you up.

little miles has a flat head.  a very, very flat head.  you see, he was stuck inside me for so long, that his neck became accustomed to being turned to only one side.  hence, he only slept on that side... leaving a big ol' flatness on the back side of his head.  which also happened to be pushing his forehead forward on one side and it looked like someone knocked him in the head with something and left a big goose egg.  we were referred to a plastic surgeon who told us this was a problem that would never fix itself.  he would be stuck like this unless some action was taken. ultimately, the choice was up to us if we wanted to put our little baby through this.  and we decided it would be better now, than later.  i didn't want my 14 year boy to be self-concious through those horrible jr. high years.  so for now, we must endure the torture. {we've been told the parents hate it more than the child. this is true.}  miles had his head measured with a fancy camera and now gets to wear this beautiful contraption on his head for 22 hours a day.

p.s. my favorite was today when the neighbor walked past us and said hi, then did a double take and said, "OH MY GOSH! WHAT HAPPENED?!"  is it really that alarming?

motherhood #14

by Katelyn:

Growing up, I always knew I wanted to be a mom. When I got married, my husband and I decided to wait until he was done with school to have kids because we thought it would make things easier. Little did I know that nothing makes having a child any easier because it is the absolute hardest thing, yet most rewarding thing I have ever been through.

I'll never forget the way I felt when they FINALLY laid Brady in my arms. After 10 hours of labor, 2 hours of pushing, and feeling complete and utter exhaustion he was here and healthy as ever. I'll never forget the way he looked up at me when I spoke to him. He knew me and I knew him. What an amazing bond we had been forming over the last 9 months that was so intensified when we finally met face to face. I had been dreaming of this moment for so long and it was everything I had hoped it would be. Everyone told me how hard it would be, how little sleep you get, how difficult the baby blues are but no one really told me how much I wouldn't care about those things. The love I felt for my son completely surpassed all the difficulties. Yes, I was tired...beyond tired...but it was more than worth it.

All women are natural mothers whether we have children or not. For me, I finally felt like a mother when I had my son but I know that I was a mother before he arrived. A mother is a woman who is an influence in the life of a child.
“In a hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the type of house I lived in, or the kind of clothes I wore. But the world may be much different because I was important in the life of a child.” ~Author Unknown

I am grateful to be a mother. I am grateful for my mother, my grandmother, my mother-in-law, my grandmothers-in-law, my sisters, sisters-in-law, cousins, aunts, friends, etc. who have set such an example for me even if they don't have children of their own. I wish I could be like all of them wrapped into one. I would definitely be super mom if that were possible :)

♥ Happy Mothers Day to ALL Mothers! ♥


motherhood #13

by Jill:

 Desperately, helplessly, longingly, I cried:
Quietly, patiently, lovingly God replied.
I pled and I wept for a clue to my fate,
And the Master so gently said, 'Child, you must wait'.
'Wait? You say, wait! ' my indignant reply.
'Lord, I need answers, I need to know why!
Is your hand shortened? Or have you not heard?
By Faith, I have asked, and am claiming your Word.
My future and all to which I can relate
hangs in the balance, and YOU tell me to WAIT?
I'm needing a 'yes', a go-ahead sign,
or even a 'no' to which I can resign.
And Lord, You promised that if we believe
we need but to ask, and we shall receive.
And Lord, I've been asking, and this is my cry:
I'm weary of asking! I need a reply!
Then quietly, softly, I learned of my fate
As my Master replied once again, 'You must wait.'
So, I slumped in my chair, defeated and taut
and grumbled to God, 'So, I'm waiting.... for what?'
He seemed, then, to kneel, and His eyes wept with mine,
And he tenderly said, 'I could give you a sign.
I could shake the heavens, and darken the sun.
I could raise the dead, and cause mountains to run.
All you seek, I could give, and pleased you would be.
You would have what you want But, you wouldn't know Me.
You'd not know the depth of My love for each saint;
You'd not know the power that I give to the faint;
You'd not learn to see through the clouds of despair;
You'd not learn to trust just by knowing I'm there;
You'd not know the joy of resting in Me
When darkness and silence were all you could see.
You'd never experience that fullness of love
As the peace of My Spirit descends like a dove;
You'd know that I give and I save.... (for a start),
But you'd not know the depth of the beat of My heart.
The glow of My comfort late into the night,
The faith that I give when you walk without sight,
The depth that's beyond getting just what you asked
Of an infinite God, who makes what you have LAST.
You'd never know, should your pain quickly flee,
What it means that 'My grace is sufficient for Thee.'
Yes, your dreams for your loved one overnight would come true,
But, Oh, the Loss! If I lost what I'm doing in you!
So, be silent, My Child, and in time you will see
That the greatest of gifts is to get to know Me.
And though oft' may My answers seem terribly late,
My most precious answer of all is still, 'WAIT.'

I don't have children. 
I have prayed my whole life to be a mom. 
It's something I've longed for since I was little. 
My husband and I have been wanting and trying for pregnancy for nearly 3 years. 
We've been through treatments which have only brought false hope and brutal let down.  
This struggle doesn't get easier with time and my heart breaks every time I hear of someone going through this trial. 
It is a hard one, but the only thing I can say is that I know there is a loving God who knows best. 
Even when it seems He's forgotten, He hasn't. 
He is working miracles in us with His teaching. 
I feel changed because of this trial. 
I feel like I have learned things in ways I wouldn't otherwise and I have learndappreciate I feel grateful that He loves me enough to teach me personally. 
I go up and down. 
Right now, I'm down. 
I am grateful though for the desire built in me to be a nurturing mother, for the miracle of life, and for the mothers who truly cherish what they have.
I'm also grateful for neices and nephews.
They are my kids while I wait...and thank goodness for the joy they bring to me.


can you blame us?

 (date night in cambridge, ma)

remember that time we got towed twice in a week...
along with 3 whoppin' tickets to go with it?
just go ahead and try to figure out those signs.
{don't worry. we haven't been towed since.
we have learned to read these signs very carefully.
and when in doubt, we don't park there.}

motherhood #12

by Shayna:

“Knock, Knock.. Hello, hello, are you Shayna, I’m Derek?” Those are the words that I heard the very first time that I met the two little children that stole my heart from that day on. I often tell Cameron that I fell in love with his two kids before I fell in love with him. We joke about it, but I would have to say that I fell in love with the whole package that he offered me. By the time that I reached 26 years of age, I knew that I was going to marry someone who had been married before. I accepted that and I was fine with that. I really feel that Heavenly Father was preparing me at that point in my life so I was ready to accept the best thing that was going to happen to me.
You hear all these horror stories about evil step mothers, having to deal with kids that aren’t theirs. These are just stories because they aren’t our reality. I have been married to Cameron for almost 6 years now and the love that I have for my children is immeasurable. I loved being a mother right off. People often ask what is it like being a “step-mom” I ask them what would it be like, to be loved unconditionally by two spirits from our Heavenly Father, and to hear those very words, “I love you” to get hugs every time they see you, to hear the pitter patter of little feet as they run in the house, to hear their laughter and giggles, to hear their sweet prayers for you offered in their behalf, and to be apart of something bigger. Then I answer them by saying, Of course I love it. I have often been asked “how do you do it, how do you love them so much? How could I not, they are gorgeous inside and out.
I have to be honest and say that when that one day a year that comes around… Mother’s Day that I had a rough time. We never had them in our home that day, they were with their own mother. I was alone. I was always alone that day. I struggled back the tears that we couldn’t have our own child. That something was wrong with me. That I will never experience the joys of being pregnant, or have the chance to be apart of the miracle of birth. That is what I struggled with. But Courtney and Derek helped dull the sharpness of the pain away. I was a mother and I was loved like any other mother out there. I knew that but I still had my days. I was still only called Shayna, I was never “mom”, I longed for that name. It is just a simple name, but what does that name mean. To me, it meant eternity, family, security, love, strength, honor, respect, warmth, patience.
Heavenly Father had a plan for me. For some reason I had to learn some sort of a lesson. I had to overcome an obstacle. That plan was to give me the honor to be called that very name… Mom, mommy, ma, mama, mother…whatever it is. I have that gift. That gift came when we found out last June that I was pregnant. I had accepted the idea of never being a mother, but I was given a gift that was priceless.
This year is different; I am actually looking forward to Mother’s Day. As I hold this sweet spirit in my lap as I type and as he watched every words I feel come to life. I am a mother! When I look at him and he gives me the cheekiest grin and the long conversations that only a mother and son could understand… I am a mom. My family is complete. Cole has the best older brother and sister a little guy could ask for. My family isn’t perfect but it is my family. I am a mother of three and I finally have the chance to be called the name of something that I have been for so long, MOM.
Don’t take that name for granted. Honor the name that you have been given. It is a gift and it is a priceless gift. Happy Mom’s day! 


motherhood #11

by Jenn:

What are you passionate about?  I feel like during this past year I was asked this question a lot, and I never knew what to say.  I was surrounded by people with intense passion for surfing, dance, sports, photography, music etc.  I saw them making sacrifices in their life to spend more time progressing toward something they felt so strongly about.  Me?  I couldn’t be good at a sport if my life depended on it.  Sure I have hobbies but nothing that I am exceptionally good at.  I started trying to figure out what I was passionate about. 

Ever since I was little, I have wanted to be a mom.   Everything from playing house and babysitting when I was younger, to my choices about jobs and education have centered around children.  After graduating from college I was a nanny.  I thought this would be the perfect job for me.  After all, I had been drawn to kids my whole life.  I soon learned that taking care of kids was no cakewalk…and I was only doing it 10 hours a day!  It wasn’t easy, but I learned a lot.   I learned that taking care of kids is physically exhausting.  I learned that I am not going to be a perfect mother.  I wasn’t as patient as I thought I would be.  I got a glimpse into the life of a mother.  I got a small taste of the sacrifices that mothers make.  I came to the realization that being a mom, what I’ve dreamed of my whole life, is going to be really, really hard.   But I am willing to take on the challenge.  I know that I don’t have a clue what I will be getting myself into nor do I expect to ever be fully prepared for such an awesome mission but I am going to prepare to be the best mom that I can be.  And that’s what I’m passionate about.      

{Jenn's nanny family}


motherhood #10

by Heidi:

When I was a kid I didn't think what my mom did was anything spectacular. I thought every mom acted the same way and did the same things. But now as I look back, I am amazed at all that she did for me and my family.  

Some of my favorite things about my mom:

         She made us kids the best home lunches for school everyday that she made us carry around in these huge ugly lunch boxes and we would always find a love note written on our napkin, telling us how much she loved us           
         She would check me out of school just because she was lonely
         We would go shopping and listen to Rascal Flatts while driving around town
         She taught me how to cook, clean, scrapbook, garden, love, serve, and care for others
         She was my best friend, always there to listen to me complain, laugh with me, and cry with me. I knew i could always count on her to make me feel better
         She always knew how to make me laugh
         She could make anyone feel comfortable around her
         She accepted me for who i was and never judged me
         She always knew what to say
         She made me feel safe
         She was always there too cheer me on at my softball games and hug me and let me cry when i didn't do so well
         She always stood up for me and let me know that i was important to her and that she'd love me no matter what
         Even when she was sick in bed, she did all she could to make us kids happy

         How grateful i am that she taught me all these things so that i could take care of my family after she left this earth. I used to worry about all that dumb stuff that girls worry about.....but now i worry about helping my brother get a project done that was due three days ago, getting the laundry done, cleaning the house for company, worrying about all that motherly stuff that i never had to worry about before. But All of this would have been even more hard for me to do if my mom hadn't have taught me or if i hadn't of spent time with her and watched her lovingly do all of those things for my family. I wish i could've done more for her, because she has done so much for me.

I hope that when i have my own family, i can be half the mom she was to me. I never fully appreciated all of those things she did for me until she was gone. I would give anything to see her one more time and tell her how much i love her, and how grateful i am for her example and love she showed every single day. 


happy mother's day!

"A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts."
-- Washington Irving

happy mother's day!
to our wonderful mothers
{and grandmothers!}
we love you and are so lucky to have you.

wade & kali & miles

motherhood #9

by Ashley:

Being a mother is the hardest thing I've ever done but it's also the best thing I've ever done! One moment my kids will be driving me crazy and the next moment all I want to do is cuddle them.  I try to remember everyday how blessed I am to be entrusted with such sweet spirits.  Everyday I have with them is a gift. But when I do get down on myself and my abilities as a mother it helps me to think about some of my favorite things about being a mother.
  • When they are hurt, they want me and only me to comfort them.
  • Hearing them call me "Mommy"
  • Helping them learn something new and look on their face when they get it.
  • Cuddles in the middle of the night.
  • When they tell me that they love me.

I'm very grateful for my children and for everything they teach me. They are the greatest example to me and I'm blessed to call them mine. 


motherhood #8

by Lyndi:

I remember when I was younger there was a particular occasion when I was being bratty and had made my Mom frustrated about something. When I was scolded for the way I was acting my snotty response was "You brought me here!" Being the older and wiser person that I am *fingers crossed* I now feel bad for saying that (and every other snotty comment I made... ever!) to my Mom, whom I love and adore.

That same snarky comment has come to mean something different to me now.

From the minute I found out there was a little baby in my tummy...
From the second I held that sweet squishy little thing in my arms for the first time...
Each and every time I get to the end of the day, long or short, hard or easy...

I recognize the amazing and awesome responsibility that is mine as a Mother. I know that Baby Chomp is here because of me. I know I "brought her here".

I wasn't uncomfortable during pregnancy...
I wasn't scared during birth...
I'm not tired of being a Mom...

There are times that I resemble a hermit crab, times when I cry about being overwhelmed or unsure, times when I just stare in awe, when I smile until my face hurts, when I laugh just as hard or harder than she does. There are days when I don't think I've accomplished anything... days when the clocks moves faster than I thought it ever could, days that I wish I could wrap up in a box and keep forever, days that I don't think there is enough hard drive space on every computer on the planet to hold the pictures I would take of this sweet little thing.

Ups and downs, highs and lows, hard or easy, fun or frustrating...
I will not let myself complain...
I will not let myself call her names...
I will not ever stop worrying and wondering about her...
I will not ever stop loving every speck of her beautiful little soul.

I will work hard to deserve her, to take care of her, to love her. I will work hard to help her be strong, happy, healthy, smart, sweet and good.
I will pray for both of us to be patient and kind, pray that we both make good choices, pray in thanks that she is here... that Heavenly Father let me bring her here. I don't bother trying to remember life without her... because this all feels perfect. Here. Right now.

I'm thankful for my Mom. I'm thankful for my Daughter.
Life is good.


motherhood #7

by Miriam:

When I first got married I wanted to have several babies and be a stay at home mom. Easier said than done. After graduation I was not ambitious to make any career/education plans. I worked, but changed jobs often to follow my husband for an internship and first job (and I hate job searching). One of these months I was bound to get pregnant, so I postponed making any rational choices about a long-term career.

After a few years of working, I got tired of relinquishing control of my life to infertility. I started to see that I had value as an individual, and not just as a “potential mother”.  I decided to apply to professional school because it was something I wanted to do back before I got married.

I started to see I could be happy and fulfilled in my life sans baby. I still really wanted a child- that didn’t change. I think it was crucial for me to envision an alternative future in order for me to move forward and heal.

Because it can take a long time to even figure out what is keeping us infertile (and we still don’t have a concrete answer why), we continued with fertility treatments even as I applied to school. I got the green light to start my first round of IVF last September. I didn’t really expect it to work; I didn’t get my hopes up.

But we were one of the lucky ones. It worked. A month later I found out I got into my dream school.  I decided to accept admission, even though I finally got what I wanted- a ticket to being a stay at home mother and not “have” to worry about school or jobs ever again. I’m 7 months pregnant now.

I’m really glad that we had the time to just be newlyweds for a while. I’m glad that I finally figured out that I have value even if I didn’t EVER become a mom. At the same time I’m glad to see my value and potential as a future mom. 
Being a mom doesn’t stop me from fulfilling my dreams. 
And I feel so fortunate that I get to even have a child.


motherhood #6

by Brooke:

When Tenney was about 4 days old, I had a touching experience. 
My grandma called and was asking how everything was going.  She was congratulating me and wishing me the best.  She then said something to the effect of, "Just think about how such a short while ago she was up in heaven getting ready to come down.  The angels were saying to her, We don't want you to go, but we know you have such a great opportunity to go to such a wonderful family who has the gospel in their lives." 
Although I'm aware of where we come from before this life, what my grandma was saying hit me like a ton of bricks.  My sweet little girl was so close to the veil.  She had so recently come to our family from our Heavenly Father.  So pure.  So innocent.  So precious.  Realizing this brought tears to my eyes as I truly understood what a gift I had been given.  How could I ever fully show my gratitude for this tender spirit?  All I can do is try my best to raise her righteously and properly.

"Be a Mother who is committed to loving her children into standing on higher ground than the environment surrounding them.
Mothers are endowed with a love that is unlike any other love on the face of the earth."
— Marjorie Pay Hinckley


dear porter,

it's been 2 months, today.

i took this picture the day you died.
probably about 4 hours before.
i had just gotten miles's new bumbo in the mail.
and i brushed his hair in a comb-over and i thought it was funny.
i think a lot about that day.
how it could have been just like any other day.
it was just like any other day.

i hung out all afternoon at home with miles.
we had some errands to run.
and we needed to go out to walmart in quincy,
but we waited for wade to come home.
i remember i was kind of grumpy that evening.
not like a mean grumpy,
just a little moody.
but not really sure why.

on our way to walmart,
we passed a taco bell.
wade and i were starving,
so we decided to stop and eat real quick.
i remember an old lady
eating all by herself.
and i felt so bad for her.
and i wondered if her husband had died.
and i wanted to go sit with her.
but i felt dumb, so i didn't.
i should have.
then miles dropped his binky on the dirty floor.
and a bunch of annoying teenagers came in.
and i was in a hurry to leave.

and during that time, you had fallen.
as i sat there eating a quesadilla,
you were laying at the base of a cliff.
my little brother,
and i was in a taco bell.
and i didn't know.

then we waited in long lines at walmart.
it was way busy.
and we had to return something.
so we waited for like a half hour.
and the whole time i waited in that line,
you were already gone.
the whole time i looked at mini-muffin tins,
and diapers,
and baby socks,
and malt-o-meal cereal.
stupid things that don't matter.
(ok, maybe the diapers mattered...}
but it just bugs me so much,
that i carried on my normal routine,
not knowing.

mom called me at midnight that night.
i had already gone to bed at 10,
which was weird for me.
i didn't answer my phone when she called.
wade finally answered because he was still up.
he woke me up and handed me the phone.
and all i heard was panic.
i told mom to do cpr.
it was the only thing that came to my mind.
i told her to do cpr over and over.
and she just kept saying she couldn't.
and she said, "please call grandma."
and i was left to cry.
harder than i've ever cried in my life.
so hard i couldn't breathe.
and i asked wade to pray.
i told him to pray and ask for a miracle.
ask for you to be ok.
we both know you're ok.
just not the kind of ok i was hoping for.

i wonder if you watched us.
if you saw us in pain.
if you saw us crying
and hurting that day.
i wonder if, even in your happy state,
you still felt a little bit sad for us.
sad for what we were feeling.
sad that you weren't with us anymore.
and i wonder if you miss us.
or if you are so close
that you don't need to miss us
and we just don't realize it.

love you.

motherhood #5

by Mckenna:

I have over 50 kiddios
10 aged 0-6 | 9 aged 2-3 | 20+ aged 2-6 | & 30 aged 3-12
I am an aunt | a pre-school teacher | a daycare provider | & a primary song leader.

I am not a Mother, but I know that you don't have to give birth to a child, in order to be one.

Children bring me such an incredible amount of joy and satisfaction. There is nothing more rewarding than knowing that I have the capacity in my heart to love each and every one of them for who they are and desire the best for their lives and future.

I love their personalities, the way they talk, the things they say, their chubby fingers, the way they say my name, they way they come to me when they get hurt. I love their strengths, I love their weaknesses. I love it when they cry when their feelings are hurt and how easy it is to make them feel better with a snuggle. I love it when they whine for whatever reason and absolutely do not not get away with it with me. I love to tease them and tickle their chicken-legs and sides hearing them giggle relentlessly until I let go, moments later coming back to me wanting me to tickle them more. I love it when they are shy or flirty, I love it when they smile and their eyes light up. I love their squishy diaper butts, and their excitement when they go pee pee in the "paaahty," even if they just do it because the others are doing it. I love it when they are kind to each other and how forgiving they are of each other.

Children's determination, curiosity and faith is unbelievable. They are so willing to try anything independently and to never give up until they've accomplished it, well all until it comes to opening their own snacks it's pretty immediate that they ask for help. Funny how that is.

There are no words that can express the love I have for children. I love knowing that I can be that one person they remember from their childhood. I am so grateful for their effect on me as a can't-wait-to-be-mother, the things I have learned from them, and the chance they have given me to love in a capacity I never thought possible.


the beach

we took miles to the beach for his first time.
it was kind of a rough day for him.
we learned that beaches are not baby-friendly.
especially east coast beaches,
because the water is freezing.
we put his little feet in the water and he cried.
and we felt really bad.
so we let him play in the sand.
which he loved,
only then he tried to eat it.

{crane beach, ipswich ma}

motherhood #4

by Roxy:

Being a mom has made me realize that the things in life that are the most challenging are the things that are the most worth living for.

Tommy (and the one on the way- to remain nameless to most people) has challenged me in ways that I never thought possible. But the motherhood experience has also fulfilled me in ways that I never thought possible.

I am now amazingly functional off of 2-3 hours of sleep.

I now know how to do more than 3 things at one time with 2 hands.

I can change a diaper in 15.9 seconds- Enough time to avoid getting peed on. Most of the time.

These little victories are the most awesome of all. Overcoming the challenges of sleep deprivation, pee soaked clothes and multi-tasking. These are the joys of motherhood.
It no longer matters if I sleep. Or eat. Or shower (gross). As long as he is happy and all his needs are met, nothing else really matters to me.

I could list all of the things that I gave up to be a mom, but I would rather focus on the many, many things that I have gained.

Selflessness is something that I have magically adopted. Anyone who knew me before and knows me now can tell you that sometimes I neglect myself. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. I now know how to put someone else’s needs before mine and that feels SO much better than sitting in a comfy massage chair while having my feet rubbed and toenails painted.

I have also learned so many nifty ways to live. To get more bang for my buck, I guess you could say. When keeping in mind all the many expenses of having children, it is easy to pass by the things in the grocery store that we always want but never need. Like pop tarts or Charms suckers, and replace the space in your cart with some carrot sticks or broccoli crowns that are on sale 3lbs for a dollar!

I have learned to have patience. Having a little child that is so innocent (OK when he was a baby he was innocent) makes you think twice about being angry or frustrated that you can’t get things done that need to be done. Or maybe they don’t need to be done that badly. The dishes in the sink can wait, and the laundry can be folded later. But the first smile and laugh only happen once. I can wait and watch for these things, and know that my patience will pay off.

I have also learned to watch my stinking language. It is amazing the things that a 1-2 year old will repeat. Actually, they hear it, register what it means and in what context to use it, and repeat it. So I have learned a whole slew of euphemisms to use, that don’t even sound anything like the curse words. But it is an outlet for me (the notorious potty mouth) and that is all that counts.

I have learned to love like I never thought I could. I love my child(ren) more than life itself, and no one can ever change that. God bless us mothers!


motherhood #3

by Brekke:

Ever since I was little I knew I wanted to be a mother. My biggest fear was always not being able to have children of my own. I am so blessed to have Crue as my son, and I love him so much. Even though it’s not always easy, I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. It’s the hardest job I’ve ever had, but also the most rewarding. Just to see this boy smile or hear him laugh makes my heart melt.


spring in the public garden

i looooooooooove spring in boston!
its so pretty.
tulips and blossoms everywhere.
miles and i went on a little walk to capture it all before it's gone.
{...and the humidity kicks in and we're all miserable.}