Sunday, June 29, 2008
Pronunciation: \ri-ˈlēs\ transitive verb 1: to set free from restraint, confinement, or servitude. 2: to relieve from something that confines, burdens, or oppresses. 3: to give up in favor of another. 4: to give permission for publication, performance, exhibition, or sale of; also : to make available to the public. 5: to move from one's normal position (as in football or basketball) in order to assume another position or to perform a second assignment.
Today I was released as Young Women's President. I have had such a crazy amount of thoughts and feelings since I learned of the release. Honestly, I am glad I found out when I did, because I have been able to sort through some of those feelings and have come to term with them.
I have served in the Young Women's program from the time Ethan was about 1. I did have a short break when we moved and changed wards, but during that time I was a sunday school teacher for the youth ages 12&13, so I still feel like I was "with" them. It is interesting though even through all that time, my first feeling when I learned I was getting released was, "I could have done more. I SHOULD have done more. And now it's too late."
For a while, I felt like that calling defined who I was. If I didn't have that calling anymore, who would I be? Who would look forward to seeing me on Sunday because they "HAD" to talk to me?
I know the Young Womens program, and although it is demanding, I love the program. I know it is an inspired program, and it is another thing the Lord has put here to help our youth in their trying times.
Working with the youth has been an amazing experience. When they first come in at age 12, they are so unsure and rely heavily on their parents to make decisions for them. They are excited to be there, silly and fun. As they grow in their time in Young Women's, they begin to realize that the things being taught them, are actually their responsibility to know. They start to take things more seriously, and friendships deepen. With that comes stress, disappointment and hurt as they make mistakes and realize the impact that their actions have on others. But they forgive easily and move on in a few weeks. They seek to find the truth of the things THEY believe and rely less on parents to make decisions for them. By the time they are 18 and graduating, they have developed a strong sense of self. They know who they are, what is important, and what they want in life. They let less of the little things bother them, and they are ready to go out into the world- confident that they will make a difference.
My favorite thing about my calling, was the chance to have a part in their growing process, without having to discipline or raise them. All I had to do was to be their cheerleader, friend, and hopefully an example. I was someone they could share anything with, and they trusted me enough to do that. I learned so much from their strength and their spirit, and that is what will leave the biggest void. Going from being with them 2-3 times a week (sometimes 4) to just seeing them on Sunday will be so different.
I am thankful for a break, not from the girls, but for myself and my family. Things have become increasingly busy and I have felt more stressed from being pulled in too many directions. It is not fair for my kids to suffer for that.
The day after I found out I was getting released, I found a note that Saroya had written and left behind. To me, at that time, it spoke volumes. It was exactly what I needed to remember. I know I worked with the youth because that is where the Lord wanted me. He gave me talents so that I would be able to reach them when they didn't want to be, that they could trust me when they felt they couldn't trust others. It isn't that I thought I was the "only one" who could be there for the youth, because certainly my counselors and other caring people have done a lot more than me, but I WANTED to be that person for them. I wanted them to know that I would never give up on them. However, I know I did what He wanted me to, and I can take comfort in that.
More important than that though, I AM A MOTHER & A WIFE. He gave me my own kids to raise and to be an example to. I am so thankful that they have supported me in the many years I have served the youth. My kids STILL get excited to go to church when I have a youth activity, and they don't complain when we have driven all over to pick up and drop off different youth. I am thankful to be able to spend more time and energy focusing on them and their needs now. Why would I ever question the way the Lord works?? :)
Oh, and in case you were wondering... I got called to serve as 2nd counselor in the Primary (kids ages 18months- 11 years old.) After church today Saroya looked at me with a big smile and said, "Hey Mom. I think you are going to help be a teacher for me in Primary!" I said, "Yes, I am actually..." then she looked down and said "YESSSSS!!!!" :)
Saturday, June 28, 2008
We did get a lot of berries pretty quickly so maybe he is on to something. And leave it to Saroya to find the berry twins!
Anyway- not bad for $22.00 and a lot of fun family memories!
When we got home I was like "Yeah COOL! I love that we got all these berries! I am going to freeze some and make a ton of strawberry jam!" And then it hit me... Oh, I have a lot of work to do. Oh and I need to go grocery shopping today. Oh and we promised the kids a trip to the beach today. Yuck. Nathan was nice enough to take over washing and cutting the stems off so I could go shopping and then we hit the beach for the evening.
I don't really mind making jam by myself, late at night. It is kinda messy.....
but my Grandma Nellie always said that "a good cook always cleans up". I do what I can...
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Ethan's final honors assembly of the year was so exciting! We got there late, but just in time for him to be awarded his Honor Roll certificate. Then came the awards for the Accelerated Reader awards. Ethan and one of his best friends were the last two to get their awards.
On our way up there, the tarp on our camping stuff came loose. (So much for keeping stuff dry!) We pulled off the side of the road and I see a cop pull over behind us. I thought, "Oh this is a nice way to start our rainy camping trip..." We'll I shouldn't have spoken so soon. Nathan ended up knowing him from work, and aside from telling us we were crazy for going camping in this weather, he was very helpful. (I thought this documentation was rather creative of me. Do you see how I took it on the sly?)
Well- the closer we got to the campground, the lighter the rain became. When we got there it had stopped all together. We quick made dinner (although the do have a really nice restaurant in the park right on the lake!!) and got things set up. It never rained another drop while we were there. Once in the park, we either hiked, biked, or ran as our mode of transportation. On our first bike ride that night, we almost ran into 4 deer that ran right in front of us!
Of course all good things end up with at least one battle...
Yes- that is Ethan sitting on top of a crying Saroya....
Ethan wanted his trail to be to the beach, so we rode our bikes there. It was a very windy day because another storm was on it's way in, but it was fun to stand in wind that strong (for a few minutes!!)
When we got back, we decided we had better head for home because we didn't want to get caught in the storm. As we were leaving the park, I looked up on a hill. Don't you think that "A" is a sign meaning we HAVE to go back? :)You know it was a good get-away when they crash out a half an hour after walking through the door, like this...
Oh- I almost forgot a few show pictures from the school production that Ethan was in. He remembered all his lines and he did great even though he was nervous. Yea ETHAN!
OH man! This little girls socks took me WAAAAYYYYY back! So Cute! (I love that she is on her toes to reach the mic)