Saturday, January 31, 2009

What do elephants and sisters have in common?

Kara with her husband, Michael.
Last week was especially rough for me as I started 9 credit hours of school and was feeling really overwhelmed. I had vented to my little sister Kara and... okay... cried about how hard it was being a mom and going to school and doing all the things that have to get done. Kara knows as she has been working very hard for the last 5-10 years going to school to get her education. I just knew she would understand. The next day, a package arrived in the mail. It was a package from Kara. On the outside of the box were the words, "How do you eat an elephant?" Inside the box was a necklace much like the one shown here. Kara's advice was, "Diana, the only way I've been able to get through my school is to look at it like an elephant. You can't eat the whole thing in one sitting. You have to eat it one bite at a time." Kara is graduating this May with her bachelors degree .

So, this week as I began my studies, I started to get that overwhelmed feeling again, but my sisters words resounded in my ears about the elephants and I knew everything was going to be okay. So, what do elephants and sisters have in common? They both have big hearts!
I love you, Kara.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

My Valentine Bouquet

John feeling victorious after a long hike with the scouts.

My cutest little flower of the bunch.

Aye, yaye, yaye, yaye...... Jeremy on the guitar-o....

Emily is such a rebel.

Wendy serving food at the homeless shelter.

Things that happened this week...

1) We got our Christmas present from Elder Rader. He wrote one letter to each member of the family and snail mailed it home. They just arrived yesterday. Although we were not expecting him to give us anything, the Katannuta came pouring in thinking how precious 2 pages of words from a child or brother could be.
2) John finished his 2nd week of online school. We have had some challenges as well as successes. For the most part, this program seems to work.
3) Emily and I both signed up for classes at the community college that starts next week.
4) Wendy needs community service hours for a class at school so she and I went to serve the homeless in Reno. In one group that came through, we noticed a mother with her 5 year old son. He had double ear infections. He was very crabby and did not feel well at all. My eyes got teary at times thinking that he did not have his own bedroom to kick back and get better in. I realize that I have so much to be grateful for. I'm so glad I'm able to lay my children down in their own beds and serve them as a mother and provide the necessities that we have.
5) I finished painting the family room a dark sage green. The family loves it. It still needs to grown on me as I was originally thinking it would be too dark. It actually has warmed the room up and does not look so bad. ( Todd picked the color so I guess we can always blame him... huh?)

Friday, January 9, 2009

School teacher, Principal,... mom!

Some times I am the teacher, sometimes I am the principal, mostly I am just the mom. After a heart wrenching decision, and because of many different circumstances, we have decided to bring John home from the traditional school classroom and have him do his studies online. I have been so opposed to homeschooling as I do not agree with the philosophy. However, the way I look at it, he is not being "schooled from home" so much as he is being schooled through an online charter school here in the state. He is required to put in 5 hours a day like any other public school kid and also has to show up for classes for attendance. He will even have to take the state standardized testing coming up in March, providing real accountability, so hopefully we will not attribute the typical "freak" reputation that is acquired from the term "homeschooling". So far this week has been good. John even starts about 1 hour earlier than I originally required him and continues till about 1 or 2 depending upon when he started. This program he is in sent him his computer and all of his supplies, books, and materials. So far, in addition to his textbooks, we have a microscope, art kits, package of radish seeds, and even a mini Ziploc bag of bacteria. ( I have threatened him with his life if he even thinks of unleashing that in the house until his project for that comes about. ) Needless to say, I am tied to the house for a season, which isn't all that bad. I have several classes that I am working on this semester for my schooling. Maybe it will really teach me to discipline myself to buckle down and get it done.