Give Thanks

I am thankful I was able to go on a mission, I was able to serve a mission in Russia.  It was hard because it was a lot of sacrifice.  I grew in faith and testimony, I met amazing people, and had life experiences you just can’t get in the United States.
I am thankful I was able to make the decision to leave a job that I loved.  I loved the work and the people, but there was something missing.  An opportunity came along that was difficult to take; but has proven to be the right decision for me personally, and for our family.

Marcia the Elder:
I am thankful I was able to push my babies out of my body, and it was hard because each one had a bigger head than the previous.  If they had never come out, I would be really uncomfortable!  I love them, and I learned that I can do really hard things, even while enduring a great amount of pain.
I am thankful I have been able to figure out how to work around our family’s particular set of allergies.  It has forced me to be creative and to research different ways to prepare food.  It is complicated and at times very hard to figure out, and I am glad that I have been able to be a resource to others who have come to need to make similar adjustments to their menus.

Marcia the Younger:
I am thankful I was able to make my first omelette, and it was hard because it didn’t make sense to me to wait for the toppings to “melt into” the egg, but I’m glad i learned because now whenever I eat an omelette I can have the satisfaction of knowing some came from me.
I am thankful I was able to not go back to the real school at the building, but I’m glad we are where we are because we are one step closer to getting rid of COVID.  We are first hand witnesses to 2020.

I am thankful I was able to help Corban do his chores, well, it’s good because I like to do service and when I do what I want, I feel good.
I am thankful I was able to memorize the first paragraph (stanza) of the poem “The Road Not Taken” because it let me earn two blue tickets because it gets me more options, or closer to more options to buying things in the Thurman Store.  The first paragraph goes like this:
     Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
     And sorry I could not travel both
     And be one traveler, long I stood
     And looked down one as far as I could
     To where it bent in the undergrowth;

I am thankful I was able to build LEGO houses, because…I’m glad I did it because I like to play with them, and the reason I like to play with them is because I like to make the LEGO people slide down into the seats.
I am thankful that when I can’t find my water cup, I can find my water cup.  If I can’t find it, it is in my bed.  I can find it under my pillow or blankets, because it makes me glad to find it, and I can’t stop it (feeling glad), and I eat my own food, all the food.

Give Thanks

I am thankful for the temple, where families are sealed together forever, and where I married my best friend.
I am thankful for my home office because that’s where I work to provide for my family, it’s where I study and learn a lot, it’s where I do some of my favorite leisure activities like playing chess and writing music.
Marcia the Elder:
I am thankful for the Grand Canyon because nobody fell in!  And because I enjoyed spending a week down in the there hiking among the beauty, while I was in college, and then a couple years ago we got to go as a family* with the Fairlie women!
I am thankful for the hospital where I birthed my children, because there are caring doctors and nurses, and I am so glad that I did not have to clean up the “Lake of Machu Picchu”** in my house.
Marcia the Younger:
I am thankful for libraries because they have lots and lots of books, and I love books!
I am thankful for Compton Park because the bridge is very good for riding your bike over and it has a beautiful “river” there.
I am thankful for our house.  I love our house because if we didn’t have our house we wouldn’t live anywhere, but we do have our house so that we have some shelter and a place to live.
I am thankful for the school because I need to learn, and the school is exactly the right place*** to learn.
I want to do what Hinckley said, but a little bit, a little part:
I am thankful for our house, well, because it has dishes.
I am thankful for Earth because it has a lot of houses, and a lot of people, and a lot of houses for that people.

* This was the only time Jacob had been to the Grand Canyon, even though he lived in Mesa, AZ for 14 years.

** The lake was so named by the midwife, because the older two children named the unborn Corban, “King of Machu Picchu” and he made a great lake during labor.
*** “Place” may be more of a concept than an actual location, because this year our kids are attending school online only. Here is the setup they have.

The “lockers”

Oh, 2020…

With that news (the whole district is going remote again), I am reminded how much I miss kindergarten.  Four years ago, when Marcia the Younger was in kindergarten, I started helping in her class a couple days a week.  Since then none of her teachers felt that they needed a volunteer to come in, so I stayed in kindergarten.  Last year before going remote, I was in kindergarten three days a week, and Hinckley’s first grade teacher had me come in one day a week.  I really enjoyed getting to see kids learn and help them understand concepts.  Another benefit was hearing some funny things, similar to when I was working at the preschool. I came across one of the notes i made last year of a conversation.

Scene:  At the Writer’s Workshop, where I oversee them drawing a picture and then writing sentences about what they drew.  Also making sure they put their name and the date on the paper.  For whatever reason the paper with the date on it was missing, and I was teasing that one of them ate it.

Girl:  No one eats paper!
Me:  Where is your name tag? Why don’t you have one?
Girl:  I ate it!  …  (then a big grin crosses her face as she realizes what happened)

I was there the day that she lost what was remaining of her name tag.  She did indeed eat it.  Another great quote from her towards the start of the school year:

“My neck hurts from sitting up!” (Said with a whine that only a kindergartner can use.)

Now can we all get healthy and stay that way long enough that I can go back to school!?

Selfish rant over.


Last week we had parent-teacher conferences.  I can see from home how I think the kids are doing, so it was nice to hear from their teachers how they think the kids are doing.  Both school age kids are doing well and received good notes.  I cannot describe how much it warmed my heart to know how the teachers care for my children, or how it brought me to (good) tears to hear that a teacher is keeping an eye on faces and anticipates struggles to address before they become problems.  I know we are not alone in having a  stressful year, but a year ago, I didn’t know how relieved I could feel this time around.

Thank you to all the good teachers out there!  These parents love you!!