Today has been a struggle. My emotions have been quite near, or on, the surface all day. Tears have surfaced numerous times throughout the day and I have been quite near the end of my rope. Many of my pleadings with Kamden to be a good boy have started and ended in tears for one or both of us. He is a sweet child but quite the handful of strong willed energy, that precious boy of mine. 

I heard sad news this morning that dear Bishop Haycock from Woodburn had passed yesterday. He was our bishop for the year that we were in Woodburn. There was a farming accident and he was not to survive it. I felt a pang of sadness as I heard the news and it has stayed with me all day. You see, we only lived in Oregon for a year. We truly did enjoy our time there and I often find  myself missing it, most of all the people. There are some truly great people in that town of Woodburn and Bishop Haycock was one of those. Although, we only had the privilege of knowing him and his good family for a year we have always thought highly of them. There is quite a legacy of the Haycock and Leder families in Woodburn.

You see, Bishop Haycock shared some very kind, wise advice with me once as my bishop. It is not advice I would feel appropriate to share, however, it has helped me through heartache and saved me from heartache, both. I feel that as though I knew him little compared to many people yet I feel that I would know that he was a kind, wise man following the path of our Savior Jesus Christ.

I will always remember another time that after we had moved away from Oregon and here to Maryland his dear daughter, Stephanie, being the kind one she is, made, packaged, and paid to send a lovely car seat blanket for the little guy that nobody there had met as we left around my sixth month of pregnancy. (I also was blessed by a baby shower to celebrate my little guy before we left by the many other great ward members we met in Woodburn. There are a great deal of good families there). It has been one time that I have truly been touched by something so very unexpected. I would not expect that anyone would need or should bother to send something after we had already left. Not only have I always thought very highly of Stephanie and hoped to model a family life after their young family from what I have seen of it, but I believe it speaks volumes of her parents and the way I am sure they raised their children as well. 

I am sure this post won't be seen by any of the dear family affected by this tragedy as we have not kept in contact with them since we have left but I did feel the need to express a sadness in my heart for this event in my own way and I am most often better at expressing these things through the written word. I very much needed to express my thoughts after such a day that me and my dear little ones have had. 

As I have rocked my, almost 5 month old, little girl to sleep numerous times already tonight I do feel grateful for the sweet meaning of an eternal family. That bond of eternity cannot be broken, even in our very fragile state during this earth life. It lasts forever. We will not see all the truly sweet blessings of eternity now but it will come and when it does we will see that it may well have only grown sweeter with time and experience. Saying goodbye is necessary for now, yet there will come a day when such goodbyes are not needed, and in that day I know we will rejoice for that sweet meaning of eternity has come to it's full fruition.


Let's Be Kind

"Be kind for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle."


I have been both astounded and enlightened lately by the reactions of many in the social media world on thoughts of others. Blogging has become a very popular hobby and even career for many people in the last few years. Some who started blogs simply for a record of family adventures or a place to express thoughts have become widely popular over the years without the intention to have a worldwide audience. While it can be exciting, I am finding it can be all too stressful as well.

My little family blog is small and I don't expect it to become widely popular. I'm not trying to publicize it. It's still just a nice place to record our adventures, our lessons learned, our joys, our pains, our thoughts, and our feelings (mostly mine). I've thought in the past that it would be nice to have a large following and even make a little money off my blog. However, I am feeling the exact opposite lately.

Found here

I have to admit I'm human and I have read posts by popular bloggers and not always agreed with or appreciated their writing. I usually don't write my own posts concerning the subject (I hate confrontation or political rants) but I have made a comment or two on other posts concerning the subject. I am also in no way trying to prove someone wrong for their own thoughts that they have authored whether it be on facebook or a blog. We all have our opinions, our thoughts, and our beliefs. That is the beautiful thing about this world and the opportunities we also have to share them, which many don't. 

As we share we can enlighten, we can uplift, and we can strengthen each other. We can inspire new thoughts in another's mind. However, we can also degrade, and even shame people for their opinions, thoughts, and beliefs. I don't argue that we need to agree with everyone. I only argue that in our thoughts, no matter if they are spurred from our own or those of another, let's be more kind in how we say them. Let's be kind in our response. (Sara and Pamela, if you read this, I believe you were kind in your responses. It was actually comments from another blog that spurred most of my thoughts on the topic).

Found here
I rarely read or make comments on blogs for this very reason, only because I don't feel like it is my place to change the thoughts, feelings, or beliefs of another. I don't feel that it is my place to change the parenting style or decisions of another. I don't feel that it is my place to tell someone else that they are wrong. Let's let others share and hopefully, in return they will let us share respectfully. It's not wrong to kindly tell someone you disagree if the response is warranted, but once again, I hope we can be more kind in that response.

We all live in different circumstances. Some of us rich and others poor. Some with family and others single. Some with children and others without. Some of us with disease and others healthy. The list goes on. The things we share, while important to us, may seem trivial to another and vice versa. We may not understand the significance of something we value lightly, as precious to another. But, do we have to shame them for this? I don't believe so. If we offend we can apologize. None of us are too high or too low in life to remember the power of an apology.

Let's share our thoughts! Let's enlighten each other! While we are doing so, let's be kind! Let's be kind for all of us are fighting a hard battle. Your battle is different from mine, but nonetheless hard. May you be blessed in the battles you are called to fight.

Update: I found this morning that after writing this my thoughts were actually felt as accusing to someone I didn't  mean them to be. Most of my thoughts here were spurred by comments that were outright rude on a couple different blog posts I read lately. This post was not in response to any or all comments expressing respectful, honest feelings. It was only meant in response to comments I have seen that were disrespectful and rude (all by people whom I actually don't know, luckily). I apologize for that and realize that it only shows me even more why I should  be careful about what I write and how I write it when it concerns others. :-) That's all.


Our Randoms Lately

Although this summer is just as blasted hot as every other summer in Maryland we have tried to spend some time outside. I love summer, I do, but I'm more of a dry heat kind of gal. I love my Idaho summers...and I miss them. It's hard to convince myself to spend too much time outside on those blasted hot days lately because I feel like I both took a shower and need a shower every time I'm outside. That's really not enjoyable to me!

We try to keep up on the garden with spending a night or two a week outside. Kamden loves helping me with the garden and the flowers. He digs in the dirt, picks off the "not so dead" flowers for me while I pick off the dead ones, runs through the water, and of course sprays me with the hose almost every time! He is always so proud of himself when he helps!

Even though I hate the heat I start feeling really cooped up in this place after too long and one of our go-to activities for that this summer has been a picnic! We've been on a couple and I finally got to try out my picnic backpack that Nathan got me. I loved it! We went to a nice park in Timonium a couple weeks ago after hitting up a local dutch market for some yummy food. We got to the park, found a pot, unpacked everything, and realized we forgot the deli meat at the market! :-( Sandwiches just won't do without deli meat...so we packed up and drove back to the market. The lady who helped us remembered me and had kindly saved our meat for us when she realized we forgot it so she gave it to me and I headed out. We got back to the park, found a new spot, unpacked the food, opened up the bag our meat was in and instead of our deli meat, she accidentally gave us ground beef! :-/ This time Nathan practically ran back to the Suburban and drove back to the market before they closed and made it just in time to successfully switch the ground beef over for the deli meat! He got back and we successfully had a nice little picnic at the park! It took us close to 3 hours to finally eat our food but we sure enjoyed it when it finally worked out! Kamden loves parks and picnics so he was in heaven and he loved loved loved the deer we spotted!

We went to the zoo today and Kamden was in the clouds with all the animals...especially the lions and the gorillas. We got lucky and the male lion decided to put on a little show for us so Kamden got to hear the lion actually roar and after shushing the lion with his finger over his mouth he said, "Cool!"

When we aren't hanging outside, a lot of this goes on...

Movie Nights, of course...

 and snuggles.

I love summer but I think I like fall even better in Maryland so Fall, here we come! Be good to us!


Rambles, Rolling Over, and Kamden's Star Performance

Nathan is working evenings this week doing very monotonous, boring work. He's basically babysitting the spacecraft and he's in a clean tent the whole time. When he's in the clean tent he can't have a book, which is his favorite past time of late (reading)! He can however have computers. So...tonight he called me on his lunch break and during our chat he asks if I have updated the blog lately. I told him I wrote a post a couple days ago  and asked why. He said, "You should write one, or two, or three, or four posts tonight. I'm bored!"

Well, I don't think I will get four posts written but I'll make an effort to keep him busy for a little while at least! :-)

I'm in more of a contemplative mood so I'll probably just ramble for a while but who listens to my ramblings better than the husband? Nobody, that's right! 

Lately, I'm trying to figure out how to catch up on life. Seriously, is it possible because I have this huge mental list of to-do's that just keeps growing and growing. I still have organizing to do in this house, decorations, laundry (on a daily basis), cooking, cleaning, baking (that is a necessity, I promise), pruning and watering my garden (which is let's admit on a downhill climb), taking care of the flower beds, changing diapers, kissing owies, nursing a baby, feeding a ever-hungry 2 year old, blogging, scrapbooking (ha...like that will happen for years), party preparations, reading my book, grocery shopping, dishes (constantly), craft projects, primary lessons, and all the other things I forgot about because I didn't write them down (remember, this is a mental to-do list)! Oh, and try to shower on a daily basis.

Haha...maybe I'm being a little ridiculous but let's be honest, those are most of the thing that take up the majority of my time, except for a few of those that are just things I wish I made time for! 

But I'm learning something every day. It's taking a while because I'm hard-headed but my little ones help me to practice every day. I need to slow down sometimes. I need to sit and play cars with my Bubba Bear. I need to revel in the time that I have with my Kali girl before she grows up into a teenage girl who doesn't have all the time in the world for me anymore. I know in 10-15 years I'm going to be asking for more time with my kids and then I'm going to hear a voice say, "You had your time and you were too busy.  You couldn't simplify. You couldn't shut the computer. You couldn't put down the book. You let it pass by and slip right through your fingers. My expectations of what I should accomplish in a day are a lot lower now because otherwise I'm going to disappoint myself. Not because I don't want to be productive but because my littles deserve my time and not only that but they still want my time and attention. I better take advantage of it while I can! 

And, seriously who could resist these cute faces?

I mean, Kamden is already a 2 year old. He's already as independent as they come and it won't be much longer before I will miss hearing the cries for help or the tap on my arm to come play cars with him. He is learning so much every day!

And Kali, she is rolling over...both ways! I thought the newborn stage was supposed to last a little bit longer. This stage is so fun though too!

I need to slow down and enjoy these little ones while they are still little! :-)
I think this is more of a mental reminder than a declaration but I need that every once in a while and having it down on the blog to read later is even better. I'm trying. I'll keep trying. I'll do better.


Old Wounds Reopen

For the last 2 months I've had this lump in my throat that I just couldn't swallow...something in the pit of my stomach that worried me almost constantly. Actually, it's secretly been there since Kamden was about 2 weeks old. Even though it hid itself away in the recesses of my mind for awhile it was still filed away in the category of things I don't like to talk about, think about, or unfortunately, for some reason I can't forget about.


Kamden struggled with nursing, thrush, acid reflux, and anything related to eating or gaining weight for 3 months...until I switched him over to formula. He was a completely different baby. I cried for hours at a time, for days about not wanting to give up but mentally and emotionally my sweet little boy and his tired momma were spent. He would scream when I tried to nurse him, I would cry, I'd get flustered, he'd get frustrated and it was this never ending cycle of intense dread. I resolved to let my hopes go of the bonding and emotional attachment I always heard about would happen when nursing my little babe. Yet, I never really let it go. I still haven't. I will always remember the comment that came from the mother (who I had just met) of someone I  know (who has a baby just 2 weeks older than Kamden) comment on how skinny he was, with an ever so disgusted look on her face.

Now, I'm on my second go round as a mother. Kaliana nurses like a champ. She always has...from the first time she latched on. Thrush still made itself known this time around as well but we got over it and I know how to better prevent it now.

When Kali was born she was 8 lbs. 12 oz. She was a chunker, a big baby, and I just knew I wouldn't have to deal with the same issues again. Ha...I jinxed myself...I must have spoken too soon.


At her 2 month appointment she was doing good but not gaining enough weight. The doctor acted a little nervous but didn't want to worry and said we would worry about it at her 4 month appointment if we needed too. Since that day a couple months ago I dreaded August 26th because I just knew that she wasn't going to gain enough and we would have to supplement and I would once again feel as though I failed motherhood altogether. I'm supposed to be able to nourish my child. Heavenly Father gave me the ability to feed my child and keep her healthy so why was I failing at this god-given gift AGAIN.

It came and in two months she didn't even gain a pound. She weighs 11 lbs and when she was born she weighed almost 9 lbs. In the first 4 months of life babies are supposed to double their birth weight. My baby has just gained over 2 lbs. Can you see why I feel like I failed? After we found out her weight and the nurse left us to wait for the doctor, I cried. I did. I let it all seep out my sad eyes, right there in that happy, bright orange room and I continued to cry through the whole pep talk the pediatrician gave me about how we will always worry no matter what, and at least she wasn't too big, that it was something that could be fixed, and other what nots. She was really, very understanding but deep down the scar that healed my wound from one previous failed attempt at nourishing my baby, gaped wide open and I knew this was something that will probably stay with me for the rest of motherhood (which, really, in my book is eternity).

We are supplementing. We are starting rice cereal and I'm hoping and I'm praying that even though I can't nurse exclusively like I have hoped for, that I can at least still nurse my baby and give her what I can.


Motherhood is a hard road to take. There aren't any shortcuts. You take one road and it's the long, bumpy one with potholes, rocks, sharp turns, and lots of breakdowns. Deep down I want to nurse my baby. In reality my baby is thriving in every other way. She is already rolling over, laughing, cooing, and doing all the normal stuff a 4 month old should. I can continue to nourish her I just can't make her gain weight and I don't know why. I don't know if my supply is low or I just produce skim rather than whole milk like other moms. For me that's a hard thing to swallow. I don't know how to change it.

Every time I hear someone comment on how small she is, or ask how much she weighs, or if she is gaining weight it hurts a little. Even though they don't know it that scar of mine gapes open just a little bit more. Eventually it will heal over once again, after she gains weight, after I stop hearing the questions and comments. However, I won't ever forget the disgusted looks like I'm starving my baby or the questions about whether she's gaining weight. I won't forget the comments on how my babies are skinny. I won't forget the feeling that I'm being judged. I won't forget the feeling of failure and a sinking stomach seeing the babies who are months younger and weigh more than my baby.

On this road we will crash and burn, we will be bruised, and we will develop scars that stay with us throughout the rest of our lives but you know out of all the worry, the stress, the feelings of failure I've learned that even though I for some reason cannot exclusively nourish my babies, that it doesn't make me any less of a mom. My 2 year old still runs to me to kiss his "owies" better. He runs to me when I've been gone and he clings to me when I try to leave. My 4 month old stares at  my face, searching it, and studying it. She cries when I walk by and don't pick her up. She knows who her mom is and she loves me. The 2 year old, he loves me too; and while it's not always easy, that's enough. I don't have to produce and feed them whole milk, exclusively, for them to love me. They'll take what I have and revel in it.

They will love me, nonetheless. No matter what.


Howard County Fair

I was itching to get out and go on an adventure one Saturday (every Saturday) so Nathan planned a little adventure for us. I told him I was even okay with just going on a nice long scenic drive so we started out with the scenic route for about an hour and ended up at the Howard County Fair for a little bit of fun!

It was not an amazing fair. It's hard to measure up to the Idaho State Fair that was just about 3 miles away from our house in Blackfoot. We went every year multiple times a year! We would honestly go just for the food some nights! :-) We still had fun, even if I protested Nathan's picture taking choices!

Kali lounged in the stroller, and Kamden enjoyed seeing the animals, especially petting the sheep and the goats!

I love the spur of the moment adventures that are unplanned but so sweet!

Kamden and the Memory Bears

When my Grandma and Grandpa Hebdon passed away my mom had some memory bears made for each of the grandchildren. We each have one made from my Grandpa's suits and one from my Grandma's sweaters or jackets.

Kamden has really taken to these bears and he loves carrying them around. The other day he picked up Grandma's and carried it around for awhile. He started to cuddle and give the bear kisses so sweetly. Then he made sure I took a turn and gave the bear some cuddles and kisses as well!

It was nice to see my little guy loving on a piece of Grandma and Grandpa Hebdon as he never met them. Grandma Hebdon would have loved on Kamden endlessly, just as she did all her grandchildren.