Paid in full

I’m not sure if y’all remember, but exactly four years ago, we purchased this house that we continue to love.

At that time in 2008, we didn’t know we were sitting at the very tippy top of the rise in housing prices.  And when it took eight months to sell our old house as housing prices steadily fell, we made a decision to stick with it.  We discussed foreclosing on the old house and walking away, but Charming counseled us to take the loss and pay it all back.  And I’m so glad we did.

Gratefully, we found a buyer for our old home and were miraculously able to take out three substantial loans to pay for our losses in selling it.

That all happened in October of 2008, which was almost three-and-a-half years ago.

And we can hardly believe it, but we’ve paid it all off!

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Just this last week, on Wednesday, February 22, 2012, (the exact four-year anniversary for purchasing this home) my husband walked into Key Bank and paid the remaining balance of our last extra mortgage.

If you had told us back in 2008 that we would be able to pay off our debts so quickly while also providing for a growing family of five, we would have had a very hard time believing it.

But we did.  And we didn’t do it alone!

I know Heavenly Father blessed us.  He blessed us to be able to do it.  And He blessed us to learn to rely on Him to be able to do it.

And by experiencing the last three-and-a-half years, we know as Nephi did “that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them”. (1 Nephi 3:7)

So, when we tried to heed His commandment to be honest and pay our debts, He prepared a way for it to happen.

Thank you, Heavenly Father.  Thank you very much!


When you think you’re going to die and you don’t– It’s very freeing.


That’s probably the longest title I’ve ever used, but it’s absolutely true.

When you really think you’re going to die and then you don’t– It’s incredibly freeing.

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My mind has been very full lately.

I feel like I’m constantly thinking of different things throughout the day as I care for the boys and our home.

Do we have enough milk in the fridge to last until Charming goes to Costco on Saturday?

Is it time for me to start making lunch?

When was the last time I changed Boots’ diaper?

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I’ve also started writing stories again and recently decided to finally write that LDS Romance Novel I’ve always wanted to write.

So that’s been filling my mind, too.

What should I name the heroine?

What does she look like?

How should I start it?

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And then the snow storms moved in this week and my mind got even more full.

One of our trees fell over and I wondered, “Did the trunk damage our new patio? Now we don’t have shade there anymore… Should we plant another tree?”

And today, I wondered, “Should I reschedule my appointment with my new doctor? Or should we go ahead and drive there in the snow?”

Because in the back of my full mind, I feel the constant weight of questions that worry me.

Will my hips ever heal?

Will my pelvis ever heal?

Will I ever be able to shop at a store again?

Will I ever be able to run with my children again?

Will I be able to have more children?

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After 10 months of pain, limited mobility and watching life from the sidelines, it’s wearing me down.

And when I recently mailed off an application for a disabled parking placard, it was very bittersweet.

But then my parents and siblings said they’d pray and fast for me and boy has that helped!

They also encouraged me to find a specialist and I did!

So, despite the snow, we still wanted to go to my appointment.  I asked Charming (a veteran snow-driver) to drive me and then confirmed with the clinic that the weather wasn’t too bad.

And with hope shining brightly in my mind, we prayed for safety, drove to the city and embarked on a new path of assessment and treatment options. (Hurray!!)

And then.

As we were driving on the freeway back to home, Charming accidentally hit a slick build-up of snow.

And we lost control.

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Our van started sliding and spinning through the middle of traffic.

And as I watched the scene unfold before me in slow motion, I thought we were going to die.

Realizing there was absolutely nothing I could do to stop it, I closed my eyes, clutched tightly to my seat belt and desperately said, “Heavenly Father, Please!”


Our back bumper slammed into the guard rail off the shoulder of the freeway and our van stopped sliding.

Stunned and breathing heavily, I opened my eyes.

I’m alive!!!

I looked over at Charming.

He’s okay!!!

We looked back at Baby– sitting in the exact corner of the van that hit the guard rail.

He’s kicking his feet and babbling!!!!

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And then I thought of Boots.

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And Brother.

Who were playing at their friend’s house.

I’m still with them!!!


And now I feel free.

Who cares if my hips never heal?

Who cares what I name my heroine?

Who cares if we run out of milk?

Who cares if I spill all my Costco cookies onto the garage floor?

I don’t.

Because Heavenly Father answers prayers.

And I’m alive!!!

And that’s all that really matters.

I know

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I know that God’s plan is perfect.

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I know His spirit children are meant to come to earth in tiny bodies.

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I know they are meant to be adored.

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And cherished.


And protected.

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I know they are meant to grow.

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And become very round.

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And chubby.

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I know they are meant to pull off their socks.

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Two feet at a time.

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I know they are meant to laugh.

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And feel the love of their families.

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I know they are meant to delight their parents with incredible hair.


And sprout endearing vampire teeth.


And light up with joy at the little things.

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I know they are meant to be expressive.


And charming.


I know they are meant to climb the growth charts at the doctor’s office.

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I know they are meant to become big brothers.


With absolute adoration.

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And overflowing enthusiasm.


And I know…

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that eventually…


… my little baby is meant to turn two.


But it still hurts my heart.

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And it still makes me cry.

Thoughts on Motherhood

A few weeks ago, I was watching some Mormon videos online. 

One of them was called Dayton’s Legs and it was a touching story about a young man who did a triathlon with his friend, Dayton.  The young man pushed or pulled Dayton for the entire triathlon because Dayton had cerebral palsy.

I loved it!  I was especially touched when they made the point that this young man had done for Dayton what Dayton could not do for himself.  Just as Christ has done for us what we could not do for ourselves.

That’s when I sat back in my chair and looked out the window.  I folded my arms and thought, “Wow.  How neat would it be to do for someone what they could never do for themselves?”

Then I wondered, “Will I ever be able to do that?…  Maybe someday.  Maybe someday when I’m not pregnant, the kids are older and I have more time to serve people.”

And that’s when it happened.

You are doing that.

Out of nowhere, that precise thought came to my mind.

You are doing for someone what they cannot do for themselves.

I blinked in surprise and slowly looked down at my belly.

The belly that I had just accused of keeping me back from serving other people like Christ did.

The belly that was working so hard to create a wonderful little body for a spirit that could not make a body for himself.

And then I thought about the two little bodies that were taking naps upstairs.

Bodies that could only be made inside a mother.

And then I thought of helpless newborns.  And vivacious toddlers.  And growing preschoolers.

And how they could not nurture themselves.

That’s when I realized that motherhood is all about doing for others what they could never do for themselves.  Just like Christ.

And I smiled and looked out the window again. And I didn’t wonder about “maybe someday” anymore.


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