Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Doing Better

Ok so today was much better. The sun was shining through the clouds in my life today thank goodness. I know I got a lot of my boost from my reading this morning in The Book of Mormon. I was in 2 Nephi 2 which is a major power chapter. I was really in tune to what I read and just got so much understanding and felt so determined to choose liberty and eternal life through Christ, by having more faith in Him that He'll help me with the trials I have right now. I was able to get some things done this morning while Joaquin napped and Baily played nicely in her room. I was finally able to gut and organize our closet which has been something on my life for like 7 years. Ok not that long but a long time. That felt really good and having had that accomplishment done I felt really good about using the rest of the time of my day giving quality attention and spending quality time with my kids. They loved it as much as I did. I sat down and watched Hercules, the whole movie, with Baily and it was great. We laughed and just enjoyed each other's company. And Joaquin finally started smiling, like actually intentionally smiling, a couple of days and I finally was able to capture it on camera. I felt so happy and grateful and just pure joy while spending this quality time with my little ones. I played and read and sang and danced until I was wore out but it was great. I thought about how this is what it's like to taste of the fruit of the tree of life like in Lehi's vision. This is what the pure love of God is like. It's wonderful! I'm so glad today was so much better than the last 2 days!

366 Blessing:
#30- Agency

My Sweet Kids

These 2 are the best things (along with Robert) that have ever happened to me. Oh I love them sooo much!!!

I had a bad day.

I'm ashamed to be writing about my bad day yesterday after just blogging about my wonderful day on Sunday. I have no reason to have had the day like I did yesterday. I'm scared that my depression may be creeping back to me and I pray that I don't have to deal with it again. The reason I worry is because I felt almost out of control of how I felt and my emotions and I felt like at times I was looking at myself and seeing how I was acting but not being able to control it. If it continues, if I continue to feel like this, then I'm definitely gonna get help because my family doesn't deserve to deal with me being depressed and I deserve to feel better. I was finally able to get my house picked up (it was a disaster) and the tons and tons of laundry done that I had to do. I would think that would make me feel better since the messy house and tons of laundry were some of the things I was stressed about but it didn't. I'm not sure if Baily was being super naughty or my capacity to handle her and my lack of patience with her was the problem but I yelled at her a lot yesterday and I felt awful everytime I did. I found myself apologizing to her way too much. I don't care how naughty or rebellious she is, she doesn't deserve to be yelled at like I did. It breaks my heart to even be writing about it. The yelling is one of the things I felt was out of my control. I prayed my heart out to be able to control myself better and to have the patience to handle her. She wouldn't listen to a word I said, she was climbing and jumping on everything, she wouldn't nap even though I tried for 2 hours to get her to sleep and she was just fussy. Regardless of all this though I should have been more loving and patient with her. So on top of being frustrated with her I was feeling guilt for the way I yelled at her and mad at myself for being such a horrible mom. And there's also the financial stress. I'm so worried about me having to go back to work and that being the only way we're gonna make it and be able to finally get in our own home. I realize now that I need to have more faith and not fear. I was so glad for the day to be over. My sweet little girl fell asleep watching a movie in her room and when I went in to check on her and found her like this I just cried because she looked so sweet and I felt so awful. She deserves a better mom than I was. I know the only way I got through the day without completely losing it was prayer. Even though it was rough I know it could have been much worse. How do people survive without prayer? I just don't understand it. I'm just glad yesterday is over and behind me and I pray I never have a day like this again. I will try and put all my effort into controlling my anger and frustration and not yell at this sweet, sometimes naughty little girl. I have to be better.
366 Blessings:
#29- Prayer

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

In a Funk

I know it's Wednesday and Monday was only 2 days ago but I really don't remember much of it. I do remember that I was in a funk all day... I just felt off. I didn't feel sick or anything wrong physically but more mentally. I went to the Y for the first time this year to start getting back into the hang of working out. It felt good even though all I did was walk/run for 30 minutes. I took Robert to work because I had to go grocery shopping really bad but I wasn't able to go during the day. I had sooo much that needed to be done and all I remember atually being able to get done was making my grocery list and that took forever since we hadn't gone shopping in about a month and were out of basically everything. Plus there were so many awesome sales which is great but it just took a long time to get my price match list done. I know I had a rough time with Baily and Joaquin being pretty fussy and my weird mood didn't help them. After I picked up Robert from work and we ate I left to go grocery shopping. Even though I didn't have the kids it was still a stressful grocery shopping trip. Robert started getting sick (again!) and so he wasn't thrilled about having to take care of a wild and crazy Baily. Plus I ended up only being able to get like half of my list and having to put a lot of my stuff back at the register which is always so embarrassing. By the time I got home and got everything put away I was just tired and overwhelmed. I realize now a lot of my stress and funkiness was based on finances... or the lack thereof. Needless to say we didn't have FHE which I felt bad about. Not a good Monday- especially after such a great Sunday.
366 Blessings:
#28- Pres. Hinckley

I'm Sure Gonna Miss Him...

I really love how I've seen so many tributes to Pres. Hinckley on so many blogs. I've read some of his awesome quotes and been even more touched by the amazing man and prophet he was. Oh how I loved Pres. Hinckley! He was the Prophet for 12 of my 24 years of life. I have been so touched by all he's done to build up the kingdom of God with the temples, by his awesome sense of humor, by how positive his outlook is on life, by how much he stressed faith, by his love for he Church, by his example he set with his family life, by his tireless efforts to lift up the Saints. There are so many ways I've been touched by this great man... I could go on forever. I was surprised by how well I took it and how calm I was when I heard about his passing on Sunday night. I'm so happy for him to be reunited with his sweet wife and I know all his hard work will not stop in furthuring the work of the Lord. But man am I sure gonna miss him. I will continue to keep posting my weekly Pres. Hinckley quotes throughout the year in his memory. Sorry but I had to copy this poem and quote from other blogs (sorry Malissa and Emily but these were just so great!). I'll miss you President Hinckley!

Put Your Trust In God
By: President Gordon B Hinckley
It isn't as bad as you sometimes think it is.
It all works out. Don't worry.
I say that to myself every morning.
It will all work out.
Put your trust in God,
and move forward with faith
and confidence in the future.
The Lord will not forsake us.
He will not forsake us.
If we will put our trust in Him,
if we pray to Him,
if we live worthy of his blessings,
He will hear our prayers.

“We are in a period of stress across the world. There are occasionally hard days for each of us. Do not despair. Do not give up. Look for the sunlight through the clouds. Opportunities will eventually open to you. Do not let the prophets of gloom endanger your possibilities.”

Showers of Blessings

Sunday truly was a glorious day for me. It was a day of rain showers which I love as well as day full with showers of blessings. It was hard to pick just one blessing for this day since I really felt so aware and overwhelmed by all the blessings my loving Father in Heaven has given me. Just the simple practice of trying to remember and recognize only one blessing a day has really opened my eyes to all the blessings I have and made me more grateful just as promised in Pres. Eyring's General Conference talk "O Remember, Remember." All day on Sunday I had the hymn "Count Your Many Blessings" in my head becauses that's what I was doing all day. So I woke up early to rain as I mentioned and also as I mentioned, I love rain! It always makes me so happy. I had to drop my sister's clothes that she forgot at my house at her grandparent's which is about a 15 minute drive from my house. I was able to go by myself without any crying children and it was the most peaceful and spiritual time I've had in a long time. I was able to listen to some of my favorite uplifting music from my MP3 player on my phone and enjoy the beautiful scenery through the wonderful rain and I had such a spiritual experience that words do not do justice to how I felt. I felt my eyes opened to my blessings and an overwhelming sense of gratitude that I've never felt so strongly before. Then when the hymn "I know that My Redeemer Lives" came on I couldn't hold back the tears any longer. I felt so loved and so blessed. Later on at church I still had this warm feeling with me and it increased as I looked over to my mother-in-law and saw one of the little girls who's usually so wild sitting calmly on her lap and my MIL was reading a book to her. I don't think Cande (my MIL) even knew the little girl but she just loved her and cared for her as one of her own. I love Cande so much. As I thought about the wonderful woman she is I thought about how much she has been a blessing to our family and has helped us so much and does on a daily basis. Then I thought of how grateful I am to her for raising the wonderful man I call my husband. She did a stellar job because my husband is perfect to me. I couldn't ask for a better husband and words cannot explain how much I love him. Some of the speakers during Sacrament meeting were the Bishop's parents who just returned from one of their many missions. I love to hear them speak and I just love this family so much. Just being around them you feel the Spirit so strongly and their countenance just glows and it's so contagious. Being around them makes me want to be better and want to be like them. Anyway they talked a lot about their mission and what it's like to be a Senior missionary. They served in the Palmyra, NewYork mission and their experiences were so wonderful to hear about. Then they shared some awesome missionary experiences they had and how the results of these people joining the gospel and the miracles of change in their lives is what the gospel is all about. I could not help but think of how grateful I am to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and how I know without a doubt it is the only true church- it is His church. Then I thought about how grateful I am to have my family in the church and to be sealed to them eternally. And this lead to me being so grateful for the temple and all the blessings that occur within it's walls. As I went to Relief Society I could not help but feel the strong bond of sisterhood and the love we all have for each other. As I looked around at all the sisters I thought of ways each one has touched me by either example, or act. After church we came home and ate some good food and the realizing of blessings continued throughout the day. I am so truly blessed and I'm so grateful for this Sunday that I will always remember as the Sunday my eyes were opened and I was able to count my many showers of blessings.

366 Blessings:
#27- Rain Showers

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Shoppin' 'Till We Were Droppin'

Yesterday I really wanted to get out of the house and that we definitely did. Robert's mom actually had a day off from cleaning and baby-sitting so we took advantage of some time to spend with her. After I dropped off my sweet sister at home (I love her so much!... we had so much fun together), I came home and got myself and the kids cleaned up and Robert got cleaned up and we were off for a busy day. It was already 2 by then (yeah, we were off to a late start) and we were hungry so we stopped at The Golden Eggroll for some deelicious Chinese food for lunch. It was really, really good. I don't know why but for some reason lately I'm really digging the Chinese food. After that we went to the swap meet in Phoenix to look for Baily's flower girl dress for Emely's (our niece's) wedding. We found the cutest dress and I can't wait for her to wear it in July. Plus is was only $27... score! By the way... you may be wondering why we went shopping when we're so broke. Well, let's just say we didn't really pay for hardly anything- my MIL is very generous and I'm so grateful to her for that. Anyway Baily got this really cute puppy dog toy that her Abuela bought her and she loved it. And when she saw all the kiddy rides she just had to ride the carousel. She used to be too scared to ride them but not this time. She hopped ride on and had so much fun riding it. It was pretty ghetto but Robert was there with her in case it fell apart. The person running it was pretty freaky. I really couldn't tell you if it was a male or female. He/she was friendly though and very informative. Did you know that a carousel goes counter-clockwise and a merry go round goes clockwise? And also, a carousel only has horses whereas a merry go round can have all different kind of animals. Thank you carousel worker for informing me of all his interesting info!! Lol... it was fun. After we left there we weren't sure where to go but we didn't want to go home yet. We decided on going to AZ Mills mall. I needed to get some Sunday clothes for my big boy and Robert wanted to look at suits since he needed one really bad and we have all these events coming up like weddings , baby blessings and so forth. Well his mom was nice enough to offer to pay for it and let us pay her back when we get our tax refund. So he ended up getting this really nice suit and I must say he looked so hot and handsome in it. And I scored big time at The Children's Place because they were having a sweet sale. I got 2 Sunday outfits and 2 pairs of pjs for only $25. Nice! I love me a good deal. And the clothes are so cute. I was also able to meet up with Emely and her friend and my SIL Martha. I had planned earlier in the week to go with Emely dress shopping since I'm one of her bridesmaids but I postponed our trip since I can't afford to buy the dress right now. Well I was able to meet them at the dress store in the mall and help her pick out the dresses and make sure she was able to have all her bridesmaids find the right dress so that was fun. After that all of us (Robert, Baily, Joaquin, Cande, Martha, Emely, her friend and I) all went to the Garcia's in the mall for some grubbin'. We got it all free thanks to Robert's brother who is a manager there. Sa-weet! I love me some free food... especially good free food. It was a lot of fun to spend some nice easy-goin' time with my Dominguez side of the family. We laughed and just enjoyed each other's company which was great. I love being a part of this family. By the end of our meal we were all so tired. Baily had been such a trooper all day. Even though she was super tired and hadn't had a nap she didn't cry or whine all day and was so pleasant. I love when she's like that! My poor little Joaquin was so tired and probably sick of being toted around all day so he wasn't quite as pleasant. He was pretty fussy all day and wore us out since he wanted to be held and isn't quite on the "light" side. Emely was able to finally get him to sleep at the restaurant as long as she was standing and rocking him. He can be fussy though since most of the time he's a really laid-back non-crying baby. And plus he's so dang cute that he can do whatever he wants! After we were full and satisfied we all headed home. Baily played for a while with her daddy making him all sorts of concoctions in her kitchen and then as soon as she laid down she was out. Yesterday was a really fun day and I'm so grateful for days like that!

366 Blessings-
#26- Mackenzie's sweet, meek, gentle and loving spirit.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Bi-Weekly Menu

Ok so I'm really late in posting this. Due to financial circumstances it's been a little hard to plan my menu and when I do have it planned I'm not always sure I can stick to it since I don't know if I can afford the groceries to get it. But this is what we've eaten the past couple of days and what I have planned until next Sunday. I was able to get about half of the groceries and hopefull I'll be able to get the rest of it tomorrow (Thursday). And also I will be starting my Body-for-LIFE fitness program on Monday so my menu is much more extensive... as in I have to plan out my 6 meals a day as opposed to just dinners. I will have a separate BFL blog this weekend if you wanna check it out for more details on that. So here it is starting with this past Friday.

F- Peter Piper Pizza
Sa- Garcia's with Rob's family
Su- MIL's black beans for Rob & Baily, pb&J for me
M- Fazoli's (fyi... we didn't pay for most of this food in case you're wondering how we can afford fast food when we can barely afford groceries)
Tu- spaghetti, garlic bread
W- grilled chicken, baked potatos, corn
Th- cheddar broccoli soup, chicken croissant sandwiches
F- Barro's
Sa- shepherd's pie, rolls
Su- Super Bowl!!- chili beans, corn bread, veggies with ranch dip, cheese & crackers & salami, chips, brownies, sugar cookies

M- 1- eggs (3 egg whites & 1 whole egg scrambled), Kellog's bran cereal
2- tropical tuna sandwich, celery sticks
3- myoplex lite RTD (ready to drink) shake
4- LF (low-fat) cottage cheese with FF (fat-free) yogurt
5- zesty Italian chicken **Free Treat- luscious cream puffs
6- RTD shake
Tu- 1- eggs, oatmeal with Splenda & cinnamon
2- turkey sandwich, carrots
3- RTD shake
4- apple & LF cheese
5- **Free Meal- dinner at Enrichment Night (frozen pizza for Robert)
6- RTD shake
W- 1- egg-cellent enchiladas
2- tropical tuna sandwich, celery
3- RTD shake
4- LF cottage cheese & yogurt
5- asian beef stir fry
6- RTD shake
Th- 1- eggs & oatmeal
2- turkey sandwich, carrots
3- RTD shake
4- 3 egg whites, orange
5- santa fe chicken soup (take some to family in ward)
6- RTD shake
F- 1- egg sandwich
2- chicken pita pizza
3- RTD shake
4- LF cottage cheese & yogurt
5- steak, roasted red potatos, steamed broccoli
6- RTD shake
Sa- 1- eggs & oatmeal
2- chicken pita pizza
3- RTD shake
4- apple & LF cheese
5- **Free Meal- out to eat for date night
6- RTD shake

We made it.

Yesterday was finally pay day and after 2 pretty rough weeks we made it. I have to be honest and say that I'm really sick of being broke. But in my effort to not murmur because of mine afflictions I'm going to try to be proactive about this issue and I've come up with some ways to try to deal with this. My morning was busy with paying bills and budgeting and then the kids and I dropped off Robert at work. After that I had quite a few things I needed to get done. I first went to the Distribution center to get Joaquin's blessing outfit- so cute! Then I went to Target because I had to get Joaquin some more clothes. He's my big boy and he's pretty much grown out of all his 0-3 month clothing already. And although I got lots of clothes at my baby shower most of it was either 0-3 months or 6-9 months so I had to stock up a little bit. He's my big boy for sure and I love him so much. After that I took the chance of taking my kids one more place before taking them home and hoping they wouldn't be too restless. I was able to nurse Joaquin in my van at Target first though so he wouldn't be too hungry before we got home. After he was fed we headed to Great Clips so I could get my out of control mane cut and fixed. My hair was really cute when it was short but now that it had been growing out it looked like crap. So I was finally able to get it trimmed up in back and just touched up. I didn't want to cut it that much since, once again, I'm trying to grow it out. I feel so much better now that it's fixed though. Baily did great and so did Joaquin with a little help from one of the other stylists keeping them entertained while I was getting my hair cut. After that we finally made it home. We just hung out for a bit and even though I knew she was tired I didn't let Baily take a nap. She's been going to bed way too late lately and I'm trying to nip that in the bud. After I fed Joaquin and got him down to nap I took Baily and Bryan to go pick up Mackenzie since she spent the night here last night. Zach didn't come since he doesn't like to spend the night at my house lately. He says he's got sleep issues. I hope that's the case because I hate to think he's uncomfortable staying with me. Anyway, after I picked up Kenzie I took them to McDonald's. I never went inside the one on Val Vista but I was very pleasantly surprised at how nice and clean it is. And the play area is awesome. They all had so much fun. And you'll have to forgive Baily's cheesy smile in all the pictures. Lately everytime I take a picture she slaps on this fake, cheesy smile. It's kinda funny. So after that we came home. The kids had fun playing with all of Baily's toys and making a disaster out of her room while I tried to put together a calendar for my mom and deal with a fussy Joaquin. He was fine as long as I was holding him but the minute I put him down he fussed. I guess he was just in need of some TLC. After a while Bryan was fighting and arguing with the girls so I sent him to stay with his Grandma while the girls watched a movie. They were both so tired. Baily was sitting on the floor and she ended up falling asleep and falling back and hitting her head. It was sad but kinda funny... it's rough when she doesn't have her nap. It finally came time to go pick up Robert at work and after that we went to Peter Piper Pizza as promised to the girls and in accordance with our Friday night tradition. The pizza tasted great and the 2 little girls had fun even though they were both so tired. They kept riding on this carousel thingy and mooching a free ride with whoever put tokens in. Who needs to buy tokens? Oh the joys of being poor! I had to run out and feed Joaquin in the van since there was no way he was gonna wait until we got home. I love having that option though. After he was fed he was nice and content and loved staring at all the many colorful, blinking lights. I cannot believe he's already 6 weeks old! After we got home it wasn't long before all of us were out like a lamp. It was a long, tiring, but fun day. I love it when I get to spend time with my little siblings. And Mackenzie is such a sweetheart... I love having her over and the spirit her sweet spirit brings into our home!

366 Blessings:
#25- How much easier my mini-van makes nursing when I go out in public.