Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Decision to Not Point Fingers

So I have noticed a lot of blog post about mothers and motherhood. I have noticed a lot of finger pointing at opposite groups and negativity. We are woman and in that a lot of us are naturally self conscious and worried of not measuring up to expectations of others. I will admit that I'm guilty of feeling inadequate and even though I hate to admit it I have questioned some parents tactics and others choices. I'm not proud of it because being a parent is hard enough without being criticized about every little thing we do and say.

Well I decided to write this blog about my decisions since the day we found out we were pregnant with Joclyn.

Our first was for the want to try to have an all natural childbirth with no drugs at all. I decided this not to prove to any one that I was better but I did some research and I wanted to know if I could do it to. Evidently the Lord and Joclyn had other plans and we ended having her by C-Section.

Our second decision was cloth diapers. I know that this sounds so overwhelming when you hear the word cloth, and let me tell their where quite a few people who thought we were a little insane. Maybe we are but the decision to do cloth I will never regret. One of the primary reasons we chose to do cloth was $. I did this by taking an estimated amount of diapers a infant goes through a day then found a box of diapers I only did one size. I then priced out that it would cost Levi and I about $2500 if we were to potty train her at 2. Then I went looking for cloth diapers. I found a company I liked and proceeded to see there price, we decided 24 diapers would be enough and if not we could get a few more. In total we spent $630. Since she was two weeks old we have put cloth on her expect for our Hawaii trip which we used only have the time and our camping trip. ( Our camping trip ended with Levi telling me we would never use disposables again!) So in total we saved about $1800. I am grateful we did cloth because I have no idea how we would have done it otherwise.

Our next decision was breastfeeding. I knew that "Breast is Best"so naturally I said lets try. It wasn't the easiest but I remember the satisfaction of doing it and the freeing feeling I had that there was no bottles to warm I always had the food with me. It meant I had to sacrifice not leaving her very often, but with her traumatic birth I didn't want to leave her I never wanted to let her go.

The last biggest decision was when my mat leave was running up. I could go back to work and use my little pay that I got to pay someone else to raise my child, I didn't make much at Home Depot. I was only part time and I would never work full time there. It would require me to be available to work 24/7. So the pay I'd get would maybe and thats an ify maybe that my pay would cover a daycare. So instead we decided that I'd stay home. So here I am with no mat leave and just being a mom and I felt I need to keep furthering myself. So I applied for school and got in.

I wrote this not to condemn any mother but to tell you my thoughts and decision on what and why I did them. It had nothing to do with others and thats my and my husbands right to make decisions like that. As well as it is every parent to choose what they do and how they do it. There are times I don't understand other parents decisions and other times I might necessarily agree but I don't know their child  or circumstances. So although I don't necessarily agree I do know that everyone is trying their hardest and their best with what they know. We as woman especially are very critical to others, if someone is dressed funny or hasn't lost all the baby weight from their last child. We tend to judge rather than help. Sometimes we see someone who looks young and pregnant and think oh they must be a teen mom. WE DON'T KNOW THEM! So why do we judge based on appearances alone. So for those of you who have ever felt like I judged them wrongly I'm sorry. I have no excuse to it and I won't make any, but please know that I'm trying.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


So I have never blogged about my many craft projects. Every once in a while I get the urge to be creative and as a result I have started (and not always finished lol) many craft projects. The biggest one I do is little bows and headbands. I started this project because I wanted to put them on Joclyn but I didn't want to pay ridiculous prices for them (especially on a budget!) So I began to do some research online on how to make hair bows. I don't make the headbands as of yet though. As a result my in laws would invite me to go the farmers markets to sell with them so I started a small business of sorts selling my bows and bands. I have made a few hundred dollars doing this. Right now whenever I sell some of it goes into buying more product and the rest goes to school. I've been experimenting lately on some new slightly bigger, more like a fascinator (fascinators are like those crazy things on the woman at William and Kate's wedding). They aren't easy and I'm not the greatest at crafts so everything is a work in progress. I say I'm not good but really thats the perfectionist in me talking.
My more popular bow

One of my favorites 
So when I have some down time with no school I make bows. Then I have my other random projects I do. I've started and have not yet finished making a few FHE packs. They come with stories and flannel board pictures and activities. These are fun but more time consuming then bows for I have to print and colour and laminate, needless to say they are time consuming. It's a good thing she isn't quite old enough yet to appreciate or understand them yet so I still have time.

As some already know I do some quilting. I'm not perfect but so far I've done three and I'm in the process of finding a pattern that I like to make. The three blankets I have made are a pink one for myself as a young woman's project, a blue and brown one for my best friend when she moved up to Edmonton, and the most recent is a multicoloured blanket I started for myself that kinda turned into Joclyn's blanket once we found out we were pregnant. I had my Grandma Lund's help with the first two, but not the last. The first two are much better, Joclyn's isn't perfect but it's the first one i did on my own so I was proud of it. Sorry I never took a photo though.  

My First Blanket

One of my most recent projects that I have completed is called string art. I found the idea on Pinterest but I did in my own way. So the original one was the word love. So i decided to do Joclyn's name. I wanted it a little big, so on Levi's hunting trips the would go by an old barn that was falling down so I asked him to grab a couple pieces for me which he did. I had too wait all winter though to start it because there was crap like literal crap all over it and I needed to pressure wash it. So as soon as it got warm and we remembered I took them out to wash them. After I cleaned them they needed drying and as I was at Levi's parents house they would stay there. My only concern was that Grandpa Guidi during the whole time wanted to sand them down and make them look brand new, but that wasn't the point of getting old barn wood now was it. And with Grandpas mind not that great he could have forgotten and done what he wanted to. So I hoped and prayed he wouldn't touch it and luckily he didn't. Then there was finding the right lettering I liked and getting it to the right size. It was stressful ( I hate computers sometimes) I ended printing them as big as I could and then going to staples to enlarge them. The rest was easy. Once we got the letters back and cut out, Levi being the wonderful and supportive husband sat on the floor and nailed in all the finishing nails for me. Then I got to doing the string part of the project. It took two hours max, but it turned out beautifully!!! Here it is hung up in her room for her!

I like to craft but not all the time. I do get the urge to change things up and let my creative mind come out and these few projects are the result of that.


Thursday, May 30, 2013

Balancing Mom and School

So I started school in January of this year, which is a lot sometimes with being at home with Joclyn all the time. Instead of going to school full time I decided to do it part time and online. Which means I get to stay home and raise my daughter instead of putting her in a daycare! Your all probably going to ask if I don't tell you what I'm taking so here it is. I'm taking the Administrative Assistant Course at Bow Valley College. It was not my first choice I would rather do something in the medical field but that would be difficult to do from home. I wanted to get some schooling done just incase something happens to Levi (which I'm hoping and praying does not happen!) Also I wanted to show my children that I did go to school and get a something from a post secondary institution.

When I finally found out I was excepted into this programme I was excited that I finally managed to get into school ( I have tried before without success) and terrified that I would fail. I have never been strong in school and I have always struggled with grades and self esteem when it comes to school. As I started my first semester it was a lot different then what I thought it would be. It wasn't as terrifying or as difficult as I originally thought.

As the first few weeks came and went Joclyn and I finally fell into a routine. I would get up early before she would wake up and start school then we would go on with our day as if everything was normal. As nap time came around she would go to sleep and I would get back to work on my school. The days she didn't sleep very long I would have to do homework after bedtime and ignore Levi.

When it came to crunch time I started getting stressed as final things were being handed in. I had it done but my worry of grades came back and I was stressing out and as a result I was stressing Levi out. Finally things got handed in and it was time to wait. So I filled my time with my daughter and some crafts that I had put off while in school. When I finally got my grades I was shocked to find out I had 80's in both my classes. I have never had anything over a 70. I was so excited and less worried as the second semester started in a week. I was ecstatic over my grades that I was ready to get on my second semester and see what I could do.

I'm now on my second semester and things are going well and I'm even ahead in my classes. The benefit of doing it at your own pace is that you can go as fast or slow as you want. Just make sure you get assignments in on time and finish quizzes. Currently I'm ahead so I have some more free time then usual which means that I get to sleep in!!! I'm also grateful that my in laws had a extra pc laptop they weren't using so that I could do one of my courses which involves using Word. I have a mac so its not quite the same as the pc so it worked out well.

I'm glad that I went through and started school, its not the easiest thing to do while being a full time mom, but I don't regret showing my children that school is important. And no matter the circumstances that it can still be done even if its not ideal or easy. Its not first choice as I said but once all our kids are in school I can go back to school for know this will do!!!     

Sunday, May 5, 2013

16 Months of Learning

I know its been since her birthday that I last blogged but soon after that blog post I started school. I just haven't had much time. So a brief update of the last few months. We have kept ourselves busy with many activities. Here are a few things we have done/accomplished:

-Joclyn started Walking on Valentines day while my Mom and Bret were babysitting. ( Which she forgot to tell me, so the next day I was rather surprised!)

-She has taken off with the talking its just baby talk but she loves to tell us stories.

-She loves to dance and sing while she dances!

-Her little cousin Willem was born and when we went to go see him she thought he was like her little doll and wanted to hold him and carry him around.

-For her first Easter we made a trail of chocolate eggs from her room to her basket which she thought was cool until she saw her basket and the eggs where forgotten.

-We went for a little hike at a park by our house with Grandma Lund-Roberts with our newly acquired backpack. 

-We went to Devonian Gardens with Pele and Lono one weekend ( which is really sad by the way and we will not be returning anytime soon!!) 

-We took care of Pele while she was recovering from knee surgery. ( I think we kept her sane rather then actually helped out though.)

-Last but not least this past week (while not in school thank heavens!!!) we dealt with a terrible ordeal with the flu it involved a lot of cuddling! 

Playing with Big Bear

Eating snacks after hike

Stealing Great Grandpa's food

Uncle Bret feeding before bedtime 
Hugging Daddy

Finding her Easter basket

Grandma and Daddy on the hike

Wanting to get out

Justin, Andrew, Uncle Mitch and Uncle Bret with Joclyn at the park

Loving the rocks!!!!

Going down the slide at Devonian Gardens

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Happy Birthday Joclyn!!!

It's a little late but its here!!! Joclyn turned one on the 31st of December and we celebrated with a party. I decided I wanted to a minnie mouse theme party. We could't do it in our house so we rented out the rec. room downstairs. We had lots of family come to celebrate with us. I was super excited to plan and decorate, I even went so far as making her her own tutu!!!

 It was sparkly and puffy and so dang cute on her! We had some snacks and watched Joclyn and the twins play with blocks. Then we opened presents. She liked the tissue paper more then the gifts themselves!

For cake well we didn't have cake, Aunty Leia made minnie mouse cupcakes for Joclyn. She was rather funny eating her cupcake, we have taught her not to be messy so when we came to digging in she wouldn't have anything to do with it!!!!!

 I can't believe my baby is already one!! So much has happened in a year and she has grown so much!! I am eternally grateful for my family and I'm very glad I'm a mother!!! We Love our little Princess!!

Monday, December 3, 2012


So this past weekend has been super busy for my little family and I, but I've learned a interesting lesson. Levi and I were asked to be in charge of the food at our ward Christmas party. We fed just under 500 people. I've got to tell you though that it wasn't easy, and a good eye opener. We had asked 3 wards to volunteer with our Christmas party. All of them turned us down, and now I can understand why. They all felt that the service wouldn't be returned to them and they were right. Out of 500 people, there were minimal volunteers for anything. Even the kitchen for most of the evening it was Levi and I with his parents, and three others from our ward. That was it for volunteers for 500 out of 500. We did all this well taking care of Joclyn as well.

What astonished me most was the response to our service from some of the members. We had one gentleman who was rather rude to everyone but me (I wasn't in the kitchen during this time). The first thing he did was walk up to my father in law after receiving his food and telling him that we needed more people carving roast. My father in law turned to him and said "well then grab a knife and start cutting," we had asked for volunteers to do this yet the day before I was calling the bishopric to beg them to carve. This man wasn't at all pleased with this response but my father in law didn't stay to chat he was to busy. So this man proceeds to the kitchen to demand "his" mashed potatoes because he is lactose intolerant. My hubby is trying to get roast out fast enough and my mother in law was doing gravy and feeding my daughter dinner. So she turns to him and says the potatoes are in the corner you can go look for them. He replies with well get them for me. Both my hubby and mother in law turn to him with  looks on there faces so he says well I'll just go without then and turns to leave. My mother in law looks at him and says really you could not walk two feet lift up the blanket and get yourself some potatoes! He didn't reply back just took his potatoes and left. On his way out my hubby proceeded to give him a name I will not repeat. Meanwhile I was trying to get dessert out. We had gotten enough out (with difficulty!) for the masses and I was proceeding to refill the tables, when one gentleman comes up to me and says why aren't you going any faster! I was doing this alone. So I turned to him and said "I'm doing this alone, if you want it any faster pick some up and get to work!" So to my surprise he did. Not for long he did maybe 10 plates and then picked up two plates and started to walk away. Just before he left he looked at my with this rude grin on his face so I called him a jerk. The Guidi family was on a role that night. Apparently we don't want to make to many friends in our ward.

When I got time to get back in the kitchen Levi was ready to tear someone's head off. We had only had one person come in and ask if we needed help and she was doing dishes. So I went into the gym and found our relief society president. I told her that we hadn't eaten and needed a break. So she found help and proceeded to kick my family out of the kitchen. So we ate, finally. I think the worst part of the whole ordeal was the fact that I had to go ask for help from our ward. I thought that we are taught as members to serve one another. I now understand why the other wards didn't feel like their service would be returned. Our ward won't serve one another why would they serve other wards. I'm not saying everyone in the ward is that way, but to the looks of it a lot of the ward feels they are above serving others. It was very hurtful to find out that we've been taught all our lives to be charitable and to find ways to give service. Even the prophet talked of this last night at the devotional. Yet there are members who feel they don't need to.

I'm grateful to all those who helped and to those who made and brought food. They did what we asked them to do and what we needed. I will forever be grateful for those who helped. As my hubby put it though we will never volunteer our services to those who do not appreciate or care for the services rendered to them. At least we won't be making our ward Christmas diner ever again.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Ten and a half months

So I've been a mom for ten and a half months and I've got to tell you that it's been amazing. There are ups and downs to everything but being a mom is awesome. I do have my down moments with her and there are many things that can frustrate me and tear me down, I wouldn't change it for the world!!!

We have been keeping busy with activities. September was busy for us because we celebrate 3 birthdays. Levi's was spent with his family. Mine was different completely. Levi took Joclyn and I too the calgary tower to eat. I've always wanted to do that! While we ate we got to turn and see all of Calgary. It was cool to be up there and to be able to see the temple from so far away. It was so tiny but we could still find it. The food was great and so was the company. Elia and Jenny joined us for diner!!!

 Our life will never be the same, Joclyn started crawling a couple months ago. I swear my house will never be clean again! She is into absolutely everything! DVD's, toys, the other day she discovered what a drawer is, toilet paper among other things. She follows us around everywhere we go, sometimes it feels like we got a puppy. Once she got the crawling down in a matter of weeks she was pulling herself up to a standing position via the couch. Now she is walking along the couch and pulling herself up everywhere.

The craziest and scary thing that she has started randomly, is stairs. We were at my mothers and didn't think about blocking the stairs. Next thing we know we couldn't hear her or see her. We naturally went looking for her and he had already climbed three steps all by herself! I was afraid she was going to fall but at the same time I was so proud that she had figured it out. Now everywhere we go that has stairs I have to extra vigilant in watching her because thats where she heads first.
October was filled with the temple open house. Every time we went through the temple with Joclyn was a fun neat experience. Joclyn in the celestial room was interesting. Every time we went in there we were suppose to be quiet and that would be the only time through the whole tour that she would start talking. I don't know to who but she did. It was really cool to watch her!

As Christmas is just around the corner, I'm looking forward to it in a whole new light. Last year we had hopped for Joclyn before Christmas, that didn't happen. So this year with Joclyn will be fun and extremely different to previous years.

Our lives have changed completely since the day she was born, and we are loving every moment with her!!!