Sunday, January 30, 2011


The boys have a new obsession - TRAINS.

It all started when Grandma Thompson bought them a Thomas the Train DVD for Christmas. Every.Single.Day.Multiple.Times.A.Day....the boys beg for the "Choo-Choo" movie & start pushing buttons on the DVD player. (btw-one of them [ahem, Arlo] broke one of the plugs in the DVD player, so now Jason needs to take it apart, get the piece out and buy a new cord. So, in the meantime we watch the movie upstairs in our bedroom.) While watching the show, the boys go into a trance & just stare at the TV, with an occasional "choo-choo" of course. Here's Arlo watching with his blankie.

We live a few miles from the Provo train station & can hear the trains multiple times a day. The boys have trained (punny, huh?) their ears and can hear the train's faintest whistle. We often detour to the train station now just to say hi to the trains.

The boys each received $5 from Great Aunt Jeanette for Christmas. They had been saving their money for something really awesome & we finally found the perfect idea!! They each spent $3 for a ticket to ride the Provo Towne Center train & $2 for a Train Pez dispenser. Speaking in the behalf of them right now, they would say "HEAVEN!!!!"

Thursday, January 20, 2011

New Talents

Can you believe the boys are 19 months old?!!! It both breaks my heart & brings me joy to watch them grow up. I often feel like time goes by way too fast and I'm afraid that I'll miss something. On the other hand, I LOVE to watch the boys grow and learn new things....they are getting so smart!!!

Arlo.... is such a happy little boy & seems to always be in a great mood. He can be whiny if he wants something, but at least he says "peese." He still LOVES his "keekee" (blanket) and reaches for it if he's at all sad or upset. His poor little thumb is getting pretty rough with all his thumb-sucking/biting. Arlo is very affectionate and gives hugs and kisses willingly; when giving kisses he says "muuah!" Jason and I laugh because when Arlo sees Jason's Coke Zero, Arlo calls it "daddy's bah-bah." Arlo is learning how to clean up his messes and while he does it, he sings "neen-nup, neen-nup!!!" (Clean-up) And no, Josiah doesn't really dig the idea of cleaning up his messes. SO clever and is always looking for new things to explore. He will flip the laundry basket upside-down & stand on top, just so he can reach for something up high!! He is really into dancing and jumping and will actually sit down to the TV for about 20 minute increments. He has recently learned about trains and LOVES them; he says "CHOO CHOO" all the time. If Josiah sees any kind of drink, he automatically calls it "juice." As for lobster...Josiah is more attached than ever. He refuses to say the word lobster; instead he calls it "uh-oh."

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A Tribute to all Mothers

A beautiful story that made me cry...

The Invisible Mother

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm on the phone?'

Obviously not; no one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible Mom. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more! Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this??

Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, 'What time is it?' I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car to order, 'Right around 5:30, please.'

Some days I'm a crystal ball: 'Where's my other sock? Where's my phone? What's for dinner?'

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history, music and literature--but now, they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going, she's going, she's gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. She had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting
there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when she turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought you this.' It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: 'With admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees.'

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:
1) No one can say who built the great cathedrals--we have no record of their names.
2) These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
3) They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.
4) The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A story of legend in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof, No one will ever see it And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, "I see you. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does."

No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, no Cub Scout meeting, no last minute errand is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become.

I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, "My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a
turkey for three hours and presses a ll the linens for the table." That would mean I'd built a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, he'd say, "You're gonna love it there..."

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible mothers.