Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Kate's Baby Blessing

 This was SUCH a special day for us! Rob gave a beautiful blessing to Kate and she got blessed in style:) My mother-in-law made her dress. She really is amazing!! Kate loved it too, can you tell? She's got the chubbiest cheeks EVER!
 During sacrament Rob and I both bore our testimonies and after Rob was done, he was crying and couldn't stop (he's going to kill me for telling you this) :) But what I thought was really cute was Taylor. She went up to him and just laid her head on his arm and rubbed his arm for about 15 minutes. Then she said, "Dad I know you're sad, but do you mind if I go sit with my cousins now?" haha then she kept telling me that she felt bad for him. There really is a sensitive side to her believe it or not:) 
 Love my sisters!!
 I'm so thankful for all of the family who came to share in that special day with us. We are so blessed to have you in our lives!!

Halloween 2012

 This is SUCH a late post but hey I have a newborn so it's ok if it's late right? :) 
I got the girls their halloween costumes at a consignment store for 8 dollars each. They actually don't like being the same thing so I decided to buy some paint so that they could each paint their own costumes to make them look a little different. They were really excited about that. Also, Taylor wanted to be a zombie cheerleader. (which I have no idea how to do as you can see from the pictures) We had a lot of fun though and we are still trying to finish their halloween candy. (well really I am while they're at school) should I feel bad about that?

Friday, November 30, 2012


I was just looking at pinterest and opened up these parenting tips that I had pinned a while back....seriously they are so great and made me cry reading them. I can't stand how precious my girls are and I totally don't always take the time to ask them how are they or really spend quality time with them. They are growing up way too fast and it makes me so sad!! I feel so blessed to call them "mom".

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"We need 4 hugs a day for survival.  We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth." -- Virginia Satir

We all crave those close moments with our children that make our hearts melt. That's what makes parenting worth it. Connection is as essential to us as parents as it is to our children. When our relationship is strong, it's also sweet -- so we receive as much as we give.

That connection is also the only reason children willingly follow our rules. Kids who feel strongly connected to their parents WANT to cooperate. They trust us to know what's best for them, to be on their side. I hear regularly from parents that everything changes once they focus on connecting, not just correcting.
But we're only human.  There are days when all we can do is meet our children's most basic needs:  Feed them, bathe them, keep an encouraging tone, hug them, and get them to sleep at a reasonable hour so we can do it all over again tomorrow. Given that parenting is the toughest job on earth -- and we often do it in our spare time, after we work at another job all day -- the only way to keep a strong bond with our children is to build in daily habits of connection. What kinds of habits?

1. 12 hugs a day. Hug your child first thing in the morning, when you say goodbye, when you're re-united, at bedtime, and often in between.  If your tween or teen rebuffs your advances when she first walks in the door, realize that with older kids you have to ease into the connection.  Get her settled with a cool drink, and chat as you give a foot rub. (Seem like going above and beyond?  It's a foolproof way to hear what happened in her life today, which should be high on your priority list.)
2. Connect before transitions. Kids have a hard time transitioning from one thing to another.  If you look her in the eye, use her name, and play a bit to get her giggling, you'll fill her cup and make sure she has the inner resources to manage herself through a transition.  Mornings go much easier when you start with a five minute snuggle upon awakening to help your child transition from sleep into the executive functions of dressing and teeth brushing.
3. Play.  Laughter and rough-housing keep you connected with your child by stimulating endorphins and oxytocin in both of you.  Making playfulness a daily habit also gives your child a chance to work through the anxieties and upsets that otherwise make him feel disconnected -- and more likely to act out. And play helps kids want to cooperate.  Which is likely to work better,  "Little Gorilla, it's time for breakfast, come eat your  bugs and bananas!" and "Don't you think your steam shovel wants to get in the car now so he can see the construction site on the way to the store?" or "Eat your breakfast now!" and "Get in the car!"
4. Turn off technology when you interact with your child.  Really. Your child will remember for the rest of his life that he was important enough to his parents that they turned off phones and music to listen to him.  This is particularly important in the car, because the lack of eye contact in a car takes the pressure off, so kids (and adults) are more likely to open up and share.

5. Special time. Every day, 15 minutes with each child, separately.  Alternate doing what your child wants and doing what you want.  On her days, just pour your love into her and let her direct.  On your days resist the urge to structure the time with activities.  Instead, play  therapeutic "games" to help your child with whatever issues are "up" for her. (For game ideas, click here.) 
6. Welcome emotion. Sure, it's inconvenient.  But your child needs to express his emotions or they'll drive his behavior.  So accept the meltdowns, don't let the anger trigger you, and welcome the tears and fears that always hide behind the anger. Remember that you're the one he trusts enough to cry with, and breathe your way through it.  Afterwards, he'll feel more relaxed, cooperative, and closer to you.

7. Listen, and Empathize. Connection starts with listening.  Bite your tongue if you need to, except to say "Wow!....I see....Really?...How was that for you?"  The habit of seeing things from your child's perspective will ensure that you treat her with respect and look for win/win solutions.  It will help you see the reasons for behavior that would otherwise drive you crazy. And it will help you regulate your own emotions so when your buttons get pushed and you find yourself in "fight or flight," your child doesn't look so much like the enemy. 
8. Slow down and savor the moment. Share the moment with your child: let him smell the strawberrries before you put them in the smoothie.  Put your hands in the running water together and share the cool rush of the water. Smell his hair. Listen to his laughter. Look him in the eyes. Connect in the magnificence of the present moment. Which is really the only way we can connect.
9. Bedtime snuggle and chat. Set your child's bedtime a wee bit earlier with the assumption that you'll spend some time visiting and snuggling in the dark. Those companionable, safe moments of connection invite whatever your child is currently grappling with to the surface, whether it's something that happened at school, the way you snapped at her this morning, or her worries about tomorrow's field trip. Do you have to resolve her problem right then? No. Just listen. Acknowledge feelings. Reassure your child that you hear her concern, and that together you'll solve it, tomorrow. The next day, be sure to follow up. You'll be amazed how your relationship with your child deepens. And don't give this habit up as your child gets older. Late at night is often the only time teens will open up.
10. Show up.  Most of us go through life half-present. But your child has only about 900 weeks of childhood with you before he leaves your home.  He'll be gone before you know it.  Try this as a practice:  When you're engaged with your child, just be right here, right now.  You won't be able to do it all the time.  But if you do it every day for a bit, you'll find yourself doing it more and more. Because you'll find it creates those moments with your child that make your heart melt.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Family PIctures

My amazing sister Heather took our Family pictures again this year and I loved how they turned out. She did such a great job as always!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

soooo true!!!

I can't stand how true this is! 

Grandma Judd comes to visit!

 I have been soo incredibly blessed to have my mom and Grandma Judd come to visit and help me with getting some sleep around here! 4 kids are hard, I'm not gonna lie! :) While Grandma Judd was here she made homemade chicken noodle soup. (the best soup in the world)!! The girls got to help make the noodles and they all LOVED the soup which is a complete miracle in our house. 
 She also bought some stuff so the girls and Rob could make a pumpkin man. They had so much fun doing it. While Grandma Judd was here she was working hard on Kate's bedding. I don't have a picture of it yet because the room isn't done. (hopefully that will be soon) The bedding is so adorable though and I'm amazed at what she can do! 

 On another note, Taylor is obsessed with Kate and I"m so grateful! After producing absolutely no milk for 3 weeks and having 2 breast infections, I decided that the best thing for me was to stop trying and just give Kate formula. It was an EXTREMELY hard decision for me but it honestly has turned out to be such a blessing. All of the kids want to feed her and it's soo helpful, especially in the morning and at bed time. Taylor is so cute with Kate. She really does love her and always wants to be holding her. I'm so grateful for my 4 girls. Now I better stop blogging and go get some sleep. :)

Newborn Pictures

 My sister Heather came over and took pictures of Kate. It took me an hour and a half to get her to fall asleep. (Aren't newborns supposed to sleep on demand) :) Heather is sooo talented, i'm so grateful to have these pictures of Kate!