Sharing BB’s

homemade firing range familybringsjoy.comFirst up, this post is not about guns.

To be honest, I went a long time without buying a toy gun for my son because I’m not a huge fan of “encouraging” violence.  My view has changed somewhat, but I don’t want to focus on whether guns are good or not.

No, this post is about a red letter day…yesterday.  It was a Tuesday.  It was March 19th.  If you look on the calendar you will not see a holiday typed there.  {The kids are home for Spring Break this week.}  Yet, it was a special day.  Why is that?  My kids, my two youngest, played together.  Your thinking, “so what? what’s the big deal?”  Well let me tell you, it IS a big deal.

There is 5 years difference between my son and daughter…14 and 9 (almost 15 and 10.)  Our son, I will call him J, was the baby for a long time.  He has quite the animosity against his little sis, A.  It’s quite sad indeed that J would hold this feeling well into his teen years.  He constantly wishes A was a boy, that he had a brother.  It’s understandable being he’s the only boy besides his dad in the house (dad works a lot so he’s not here all that much.)  It’s also understandable that he wished for a brother being that he doesn’t have many friends here.  I’ve mentioned before in earlier posts about him being bullied and told he looks like a monkey.  Oh how it makes my heart hurt.

Back to J & A.  They constantly fight.  I’ve touched on this in earlier posts as well.  Dinner time, prayer and scripture time are not always super enjoyable as we have to constantly referee the 2.  Many days I am grateful I can spread the kids out into different areas of the house so I can have a break from the bickering.

Hopefully, you have somewhat of a picture of what life is like with my 2 youngest kids.  It’s not all happily ever after in this family.  However, yesterday was heavenly.  J asked A if she wanted to shoot his BB gun {actually his dad’s} with him.  I thought to myself, “Oh no. Do I really want to allow this?”  Yesterday I was super tired.  We had gotten in from our trip to visit my Mom from the weekend at about 1 AM.  I was just grateful they wanted to be outside and hoped I had about 2 minutes of respite before one of them came in and told me of how the other had done this or that to them.  Next thing I know, several minutes had passed and J came in asking if I would take a photo of how they set up their shooting range in the back yard.  I immediately grabbed my camera and said a prayer of thanks in my mind to God.

BB loading

BB shooting range2

Even though J is not pictured here, these photos represent true love on his part.  The fact that he shared the gun and let his sister shoot it is a miracle.  Not only did they do this together, they also played on the plasma cars and we all played catch with the baseball together.  The other reason it was a red letter day is because the TV was not turned on ALL DAY!  Oh how I love that!  I am very grateful for this special day.

Unfortunately, today it’s back to normal.  Lord, help me.

Happy First Day of Spring,

I Think I Can…Update

Just to let you know, I am doing better.  Thanks again to all who encouraged me in some fashion…it means SO MUCH to me.

Taken last November

Taken last November

I haven’t had much time to devote to the blog lately.  I feel bad about that.

What I looked like almost 2 1/2 years ago.

What I looked like almost 2 1/2 years ago.

Here’s the deal.  Part of the problem lately is my realization of gaining an unreasonable amount of weight for a person of my size.  Unfortunately, I believe my blogging has encouraged this to some extent.  I am 5′ 3 1/2″ .  When my husband and I were married almost 19 years ago I weighed 102 pounds.  After being pregnant 4 times (1 miscarriage) I was happy at about 120-125 lb.  Well, now I am weighing in at about 143 pounds.  I weighed this amount when I was pregnant. {This makes me sick!}  Truly I don’t weigh myself very often…really only about once every 3 months when I go to the dr. for a med check.  I have noticed by 1. the way my pants fit…either too tight or I can’t even button them {you can hear me screaming in the background here} or 2. I can see it in photos.  I hate both, but the second is the most difficult for me.

Taken on my 41st birthday, you can tell in my face how much weight I've gained in just a year.

Taken on my 41st birthday, you can tell in my face how much weight I’ve gained in just a year.

Anyway, so I am determined to get back into shape, now that I am healthy and can get back in shape.  Being injured or sick doesn’t help when it comes to wanting to exercise.

Me 5 years ago going on a run on Christmas Day

Me 5 years ago going on a run on Christmas Day

I’ve been running again.  Let me tell you, if you are not a morning person {which I am not} then running in the day takes up a lot of time.  It’s been hard.  No, it’s been excruciating!  Running with 20 extra pounds is horrible.  I am barely able to run 3 miles without stopping right now.  Do you know how mentally difficult that is on someone who has run a marathon and 4 half marathons?  It’s been awful.  But I go because I am determined to get back into my pants and not buy a bigger size.  I go because I want to not be ashamed and sickened when I look at myself in photos.  I go because I want to be healthier and have more energy.

More recent photo of me with our daughter.

More recent photo of me with our daughter.

I should have left a couple of hours ago to run.  I’m dreading it.  I used to love going to run.

Life is good…I think I can…I know I can…my mantra while running.



Have a beautiful day friends,

My Attempt To Describe Depression

coked to the side familybringsjoy.comDepression is raw.

It’s debilitating…paralyzing.

Sometimes, I think to myself, “I should be used to this feeling,” not that it would change how it feels…how horrible it is.

Depression seems to slow time down while Joy speeds it up.  Oh how I wish it was the opposite.

looking away familybringsjoy.comWhen I am experiencing a bout of depression I feel helpless.

I feel stopped, plugged up, held up like there is no progression.

Like there is nothing I can do BUT feel…and it’s sad.

Chemical depression is not always due to outside influences.  It just happens, no matter what circumstances I’m in.

I have so much to be grateful for.  God has blessed me immensely, yet I feel sad…then the shame wheel starts rolling.  Boy does that make it worse!  It’s honestly better to not think.  Ha!  For me that is impossible.  My mind continuously thinks.

serious familybringsjoy.comThe only thing that brings me hope is knowing this will pass.  My history shows that it won’t be here forever and I am so counting on that.  I wish it would hurry and be done.

I wish it would hurry and be done.

be done depression
We would not know joy without sorrow,

Great Organizing Tips

photo(22)Yesterday, after tripping over shoe upon shoe I decided it was time.

Time to organize my closet once and for all.

I never truly organized it when we moved in to this house about 3 years ago.  It has also become a dumping ground for stuff around the house.  For example, I might have company coming so I grab a container and throw all the clutter in it.  That container ends up in my closet.  For some reason I have linens and all kinds of non-closet items.  I always justify that the rest of the house {the part everyone sees} deserves my attention more.  However it is completely out of control and beginning to wreak havoc when trying to find clothing I need or want.

I have a nice size walk in closet with built ins.  It is plenty big for my needs yet most of the time I can’t walk in.  Isn’t that awful!?  It is.  Sigh…

This is where I am in my organizing {no I did not finish}:

-Took all the shoes out of the closet.  Purged shoes (1 bag)

-Vacuumed the floor I could see. {I love vacuuming because of the instant gratification it brings!}

-Purged dresses and shirts. (1bag)  Threw away old hangers and used new wooden hangers I scored for only $6 for a box of 20 at Wal Mart. {Sure hope when I go back to Wal Mart they’ll have more of those hangers}

-Grouped my dresses in colors.  Ahhh…if it only looked like this all the time.

Anyway, so a beautiful person I met at Blissdom last year is a professional organizer.  Her name is Amy Volk from  She saw me whining about how grueling this closet organizing process is for me on Instagram with the photo above.  She left me this comment of hope:

“Tomorrow my segment is on closet organizing :))))”

I visited her site first thing this morning and found a video of Amy on a TV news segment and had to share it with you:

I’m off to work some more on my closet.

P.S.: When I updated my blog it took away my pages {Home, About Me, Blogs Bring Joy, Affiliates Bring joy, Books Bring Joy} I’m currently waiting to hear back from WordPress to see how this can be corrected. Sorry for the technical difficulties

Wish me luck,

LOTS of Change

“No blog worthy posts right now?” Hubby asks.

I have a list compiled of blog worthy posts, yet it’s not happening.

There was Christmas.

There was sickness.

Hopefully, I’m on the tail end of this obnoxious sinus infection.  I feel way better than I have been, just not back to normal.

The New Year…2013…what has she brought our family so far:

Let’s see…if you’ve been following me on Instagram, you are aware that during my sickness phase my Daughter had oral surgery.

after oral surgery familybringsjoy.comBoy was that a doozy!  I really should write a post about how to prepare for having your teen’s impacted wisdom teeth removed.  Ugh!  Fortunately, she has recovered and no suffering of dry socket, thank heavens! {Photos above show my Daughter with one of her BFFs who came & help nurse…THANK YOU AGAIN C!}

Two days ago, Sunday, DH was released from his volunteer calling of Bishop for our local church congregation.  He served without pay and in addition to his full time career for almost 3 years.  This is a HUGE change for our family.  The Bishop has many responsibilities as leader of the congregation.  I am grateful for his service, time, dedication and devotion to that special calling.  I am also grateful it is only for a few years.  I look forward to a new beginning for our family…more time with my husband and more time for the kids with their dad.  I took a photo of hubby & I after church to document this milestone in our lives.


Last but not least, I realized I haven’t blogged about my haircut which happened 6 weeks ago.

before and after Nov29 Short Hair Collage

I really love it!  It feels like me.  LOTS easier to do and I feel lighter. 😉 {My hair is extremely thick!} Thank you for all the kind feedback from everyone online about me going very short again.  The family was extremely shocked about my decision, but now they say I look weird when they look at photos of me before. lol  They are used to it now.  Sometimes, I look back at photos of me before and have a teensy bit of regret, but not for long.  My husband was right when he said, “it was time for a change.”  So glad he agreed.

Before I sign off, I just want to take a minute to say something.  If you read this whole post and you are not related to me, I am grateful.

I have been reevaluating my blog.  As I have mentioned in the past, I struggle from ADD & depression.  Sometimes, when I am feeling low I wonder why anyone would want to read about me who is not a good friend or family member.  Heck, I know many friends and family members who don’t visit consistently or at all.  Yet, even though you may not comment, I see you coming back here.  How?  Well, there’s this little website in the blog world called Google Analytics.  Occasionally, I go there to see what people are reading or if there are any people at all visiting.  Last year 20% of my visitors are returning visitors.  That’s you!  Thank you.  Even though I’m not always consistent with my blog writing you still return.  Thank you for caring about me and my family.  Otherwise, why else would you be coming back?  Sure, I have a few good ideas here and there, but not enough for you to check back to see those.  So, again, thank you.  I appreciate each and every one of you.  You help this silly, eccentric and sometimes lonely Momma feel as though I matter.  I know I matter to my family, at least I hope/think I do, but it’s not the same.  I am indeed grateful to know I matter to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, which is most important.  I just hope the talents He has blessed me with can help bless others lives.  YOU matter to me and to Him.  For it is through others that He meets our needs.

I appreciate YOU,

Writing From My Heart

writing from the heart familybringsjoy.comThis morning I woke early to help my oldest finish gifts for her friends.  She wanted to make them Oreo balls.  We stayed up late last night dipping them in chocolate.  We bought cute little Christmas tree jars to put the Oreo balls in.  It was my privilege to place them into the jars this morning after they hardened overnight in the fridge.  They turned out beautifully.  Carefully, I placed the 8 jars in a bag filled with shredded paper to cushion and protect them.

It was time for my Daughter to leave for early morning seminary, which is a 50 minute scripture class she goes to at 6:45 AM Monday through Friday before school.  We loaded her trunk with the goodies and she was off.  I trod back into the house to find the goodie box I filled for her photography class.  She was asked to bring some goodies for the Christmas ‘party’ they were having today at her special photography course she takes at the local vocational technical school in the afternoons.  We made a double batch of the Oreo balls so half went into the jars and the other half was for her class.  I also noticed she left her lunch.  Fortunately, her seminary class meets in a home nearby, so I pulled on my jacket and took them to her.  Yes, I was still in my PJ’s, but there was no time to change. 😉

I’m back at the house and now it’s time to get my youngest Daughter up and ready for school.  While she’s dressing I finish placing the last minute touches to her teacher’s gifts.  After packing those up, wonderful Hubby {Thank you!} takes our 2 youngest kids to school.

So here I am still in my PJ’s sipping on my protein shake while I type up this post.

Before I prayed this morning I was mentally tallying all the things that need to be done.  It was yesterday I realized we only had a week before Christmas.  Ya see, I’m not a calendar kind of person, never have been.  I like to take things day by day.  Don’t get me wrong, I have a calendar and I write my appointments on it.  But unless I write a check {I don’t do that very often,} I don’t really know what the date is.  I know what day it is, like I know today is Wednesday, but I have to look at the calendar to see it’s the 19th.  I’m a domestic servant, goddess, diva engineer, why do I need to know the date?  I’m certain it has more to do with my ADD than anything else.  Anyway, like usual, I don’t have everything done I wanted to have done by now.  This prompts the overwhelming monster and I begin to feel my shoulders hardening and rising to my ears.  I begin to start the shame wheel and nothing good comes by doing that.  So I took a deep breath and began to pray…

As I prayed I counted my blessings and thanked my Heavenly Father for each one.  One by one I began to feel the tension and stress melt away.  Most of my concerns are trivial in the grand scheme of things.  Instead of the shame wheel and ‘bad me’ recording I was hearing before I prayed, God began to show me in my mind the things I have accomplished.  He made me see the tasks I have done and know they do matter.  On top of that, He made me feel as though I can accomplish what’s left on my list, if not today, in plenty of time before Christmas.  Oh how grateful I am for His tender mercies.  Nobody knows me like He does.  Nobody understands what it’s like to be me besides my Savior and Creator.

Writing from my heart,