Friday, January 3, 2014

Happy New Year!

At the beginning of this new year, I have a lot of things on my mind. New Years resolutions not being one of them. Not that I don't believe in goals, I certainly do, and I set new ones throughout the year as I either accomplish some or reevaluate and decide how to approach one that isn't working out. I am not the guru to go to for fancy plans to get your life in order and become successful. I have read many books on the subject, but when it gets down to it if you need an expert to give you a boost and guide your steps in the right direction, I am not the girl. I am not patient enough to wait for the beginning of the year, so I started most of my new goals as I thought of them before the year ended. I have already memorized three scripture mastery scriptures- no I didn't do it when I was in Seminary but I have wanted to for a long time, so I started. My diet has been being cleaned up and my schedule readjusted so that I can incorporate the exercise I let slide for the last year and a half since my last baby was born and I am trying to convince my children, husband and myself that I need to sleep sometime in order to function properly during the day- that one is the hardest so far- still up at midnight, missed that goal tonight or last night I guess would be more accurate.
I may not be patient enough to wait for the new year to begin my goals, but I love the freshness of the new beginning. There is something deceptively relaxing about the thought of a whole year to accomplish things in. I say deceptively because looking back on last year, it is not really that much time.
That is one of the things on my mind as this new year starts- time. I know this sounds crazy, maybe just flat dumb, but I recently had an epiphany about time. I am sure everyone out there already had this figured out, but it has taken nine kids, a husband, three dogs and a mom who needs help for me to understand- I can only do so much in a day. Everything I do takes time, there is only so much time in a day sometimes there is more to do than time to do it in. For the better part of this year I have been running around frustrated at myself for not getting the things done I needed to get done and wondering why it was always 4:00 pm before I had a moment, and that is time to make dinner and then it's dinner, kids ready for bed, prayers, bed- me laying in bed wondering why all I ever do is get up, work, go to bed and sleep like the dead. Well, I figured it out, there is nothing wrong with me, I have nine kids, a husband, a mom and (now) two dogs. That is where my time goes because that is what is important to me and I wouldn't change it for anything. I do remember having two kids and no dogs when my mom was healthy and I remember all the time I used to have. I remember having eight kids and two dogs and the time I had then. All I am saying is that it was such an incredible relief to know that there was nothing wrong with me, I am just severely outnumbered and it will get better in time. One of the first things I am going to do when I get some of that time is learn how to put cute pictures- or funny or whatever in my blog posts. That will be fun.
Picture a clock here.
The other thing on my mind is love. Now I am going to sound like a horrible person for a bit in this next story, I beg your forgiveness at the start. Thirteen years ago next month, we made the most ridiculous decision we have ever made as a family. We got two dalmation puppies.
Picture adorable spotted beasties here.
If you have never owned a dalmation, don't. I love animals, horses and dogs in particular. My life is just not right without at least a dog. If I did not already have several careers, I think I would really love to be a dog trainer- maybe in my next life. Just trust me here, don't choose the dalmation, especially more than one. It may have been the timing, I ended up pregnant a month after we got them and was sick as,well- you know. We named them Freckles and Fiesta, because of all the spots and the one was like a little party- that should have been a warning. Maybe we should have given her a tamer name- like Sleepy. Whatever the cause, it was not a good choice. The next six years were miserable, I have never owned a dog I could not work with or love. Then Freckles got sick. She was gone in three days. Three days of me up early and in the night to care for her, clean up after her trying to make her well again. When it was over I cried. I liked her better than Fiesta who was more stubborn than anyone has a right to be- especially a dog. Two years later, Fiesta got sick and almost died as well. The vet saved her. My husband brought home the most adorable puppy I had seen in ages- a brindled boxer. He didn't want me or the kids to be sad when Fiesta died which he figured wasn't too far off after what had just happened and what had happened to Freckles. Ranger has been a joy from day one- easy to train, obedient and fun. My guilt at being able to love Ranger so easily caused me to work harder to give Fiesta equal positive time, as long as I had a treat, she worked harder, too. For the next almost five years, I would grumble about this dog- grrrr- she made me so mad! I had tried, it was her fault- I am not a bad owner.
Picture Cruella De Vil here.
I threatened to make her into slippers at least once a day- and some days I meant it! I was afraid I would be stuck with her FOREVER! She finally got so old- her 13th birthday was December 25, 2013- 91 in dog years according to my 12 year old. I prayed she would just die peacefully in her sleep, but we had to release her from her pain Dec 30. I am still crying.
So what I learned from two obnoxious dalmation dogs and just figured out this last year- it may not be easy and it may not seem like you do at the time, but you love those you serve. You are doubly blessed (or more) if you can enjoy the serving.
Now there are more things on my mind, my son waiting for his mission call, my daughter in her new apartment and the cute chitesedle puppy she left with us, who might throw up tonight, my mother's Parkinson's and how my sisters are dealing with it- but at the moment, it is late- I am not even going to say how late- all I am thinking about is going to bed. I will just say that all in all, happy, sad, good and bad, last year was a good year. I learned some important things even if I didn't meet all of my goals and I am looking forward to this year. I hope my words gave you some pleasure and that they made sense- I always worry about that when I work this late. Have an EXCELLENT and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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