"Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children." (Family Proclamation, paragraph 6)
When I think of our home, my family, I am quickly reminded of how much laughter these walls contain. I have a new sense of family than I did when growing up. It is amazing how much joy there is to be had when everyone in the home feels loved.
Lately Logan has been having a hard time. I blame it mostly on him being a tad on the emotional side. Jeremy being a little more intune with the spirit, sat him down to talk. It was such a neat thing for me to hear that Logan opened up about his frustrations. This to me shows that he knows that we are safe, that we love him. Jeremy has started having interviews with the kids once a month. It is a time when they get to talk to him about anything without sharing Daddy's ear. For the younger ones it is a time to wrestle and bond.
As a family we love doing things together. We have, so far steered clear of activities such as sports. For a few reasons, such as, doing it for 6 kids will equate to a hectic schedule. Another, it feels like we get too little family time and those things tend to diminish it even further. The biggest reason is that Jeremy and I know there will be opportunities later so we don't need to rush them now.
Some fun things that we enjoy is creating fun memories. As a family we love to do dinner and a movie. It is still fairly new and I am finding many great ideas to make it more memorable. What we have done so far is pick a family friendly movie and create a dinner menu based on the theme. The kids get to help come up with the menu. It is the only time we eat in front of the television. We also let the children each have a special night. This is one of the occasions that we do split Haylie and Hannah up. They get to stay up late and pick what we will do. Usually it involves ice cream and games or a movie. All of them adore being the center of attention. It is like a date night but staying in and it is something they talk about and share it with anyone with ears before and after. To make them also feel special we try to celebrate accomplishments like perfect spelling tests or acing their math blasts as they come up.
Having 6 kids it is so easy to get overlooked and it is hard to not lump them together, but as parents we try very hard to let them be individuals, except Lauren I wish she would be a tad less individual. Today we had a particularly hard day. Lauren tried every last smidge of patience, which is what I get when I pray for patience! I had sent her to her bed for the umpteenth time and told her to stay there. I was so frustrated and beyond being a loving and caring mother. As I could feel the steam pouring out of my ears and wondering why I pray for patience when I know how that gets answered, it came to me to pray. So I gathered Lauren into my lap and told her how much I loved her and that I was very sorry I got so angry. Her countenance changed instantly. She went from cranky pouty two year old to beaming at me and giving me the tightest squeeze ever. Then I asked her if she wanted to pray together. She agreed and closed her eyes and bowed her head. I decided to say it, then on her own she repeated everything I said. Everything that I was so tense about melted away. Then I asked her to lay down and I was able to hold her until she fell asleep.
In the June 2006 Ensign Elder L. Tom Perry said "Our Lord and Savior ministered personally to the people, lifting the downtrodden, giving hope to the discouraged, and seeking out the lost. By His words and actions, He showed the people that He loved and understood and appreciated them. He recognized the divine nature and eternal worth of each individual. Even when calling people to repentance, He condemned the sin without condemning the sinner.
Like our Savior, (insert parent) we should love the people we serve, showing care and concern for each one individually."
The Savior came to live here on this earth so that we may learn to live like he did and treat others the same way. I am learning and plan to continue to learn my whole life through, but I do know that when we follow His example, those that we serve will KNOW that we love them unconditionally.