Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Happy Birthday Lexi!!

Two Things I am Grateful For:

1) Alarm clocks that are always getting me up in time!

2) Water!  Since I have worked hard to drink more water I feel better and it's awesome!  LOVE IT!

Goals for the Day:

1) Wish Lexi Happy Birthday!
2) Get through my work day.
3) Clean/Laundry - it's never ending!
4) Dinner
5) Soda run for Kevin
6) Watch my show!  I have to get through this series...Pretty Little Liar so I can watch season 4 of Scandal again before the new fall season begins!
7) PAINT my project piece
8) Get things ready for work tomorrow
9) Reach out to Danielle to find out what time everyone can come over for the blessing tomorrow.
10) Check Lexi's grade for her 1st summer school session.

From the Camera:

From the Heart:

In keeping with our theme, here is another idea...
Many children in your community don't have access to books because of financial reasons, or because their families don't value education. That's why libraries are a great resource. Anyone can sign up for a library card and enjoy thousands of books for free.

Step It Up

Donate your used books to your local library or an organization that provides books for children. Include a kind note if you wish.

Keep It Simple

Bring a used book to school to share with your classmates.

From the Kitchen:

Turtle Cookies
Prep time 15 mins
Cook time 10 mins
Total time 25 mins
Serves: 3 dozen
2½ cups flour
½ cup very good quality cocoa
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup butter
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 oz semisweet chocolate chips ( about 1 ½ cups)
1 cup chopped pecans
3 dozen individually wrapped caramel candies
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a medium sized bowl whisk together flour, cocoa, salt, and baking soda.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and combine thoroughly.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the sweetened butter. Mix only enough to incorporate flour. Do not over mix. Fold in the chocolate chips. 
  5. Roll into 1 inch balls and dunk one half of the ball into the chopped pecans.
  6. Place on parchment lined baking sheet 3 inches apart with the side dunked in pecans facing upward. Press down slightly. Gently push one caramel candy half way into the center of each cookie ball.
  7. Bake 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees F. Do not over bake or cookies will be brittle.
  8. Cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet before removing to a wire rack to cool thoroughly. You can drizzle the tops of the cookies with melted chocolate as well but that's completely optional.

From the Spirit:

Keep On Trying Even When There Is No Hope...

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.
-Dale Carnegie

How confused the scene of our life appears, however torn we may be who now do face that scene, it can be faced, and we can go on to be whole.
-Muriel Rukeyser

From the Schmidt's
Guess what? It's 6:00 p.m. and I am still awake!  That is an improvement from the past two days as I pat myself on the back.  
Thank Goodness!  

Today was a good day.  We were busy at work, but all in all, it was good.  When I got home and walked through the door, Kyle was on his way out.  He had to run an errand and get to the Gym for training tonight.  He has another competition coming up in July he is training for.  Then a National Competition in Utah in September.  He's not sure he will get to the one in Utah if he is busy with the police academy.  

Lexi has one more day left of her online class.  She is taking a Biology class this session.  Then the next session she will take another Math class.  This Biology class has been tough.  It's accelerated and she missed a week during Girls Camp, which basically means she missed two weeks.  So, she has been playing catch up which has not been fun.  Tomorrow is the last day and she is cramming to get everything turned in on time.  I no likey this!  She is stressed and talking back to her parents, which causes Kevin and I to get angry.  It isn't pretty.  Needless to say, I no likey this at all!  

I thought about keeping Lexi home from Mutual tonight, but I don't like doing that.  She needs that. Besides, the Young Women have something planned for her big birthday.  And, Lexi becomes a Laurel after tonight.  She is pretty excited about that.  I remember being her age.  It was always nice to move up with the older girls.  I can't believe she will be a Junior in High School in the fall.  Yikes!  That should keep us all on our toes.  I remember my Junior was the year I loved the most.  We had a 4 year High School in California.  I remember being a Freshman thinking the Seniors all looked like adults to me.  Then when I was a Sophomore it got a little better.  But as a Junior I had a lot of fun.  You could say, maybe a little too much fun too.  Yes, there are things I did that I do regret, but we won't go into all of that.  That's a story for another time.  Then as soon as school was out for the summer my parents announced that my dad was retiring from the Air Force and we were moving to Mesa, Arizona.  I was so sad.  In fact, I tried everything to get my parents to let me stay with another LDS family in the ward.  I remember one of the families even offering to let me stay with them.  I had every intention of staying in California for my Senior year.  That is, until my Dad sat me down and had a talk with me.  

I have to say, this was one of those moments in your life that you look back on and realize that if things didn't work out the way they did during that very conversation, I might not be where I am today.

You see, my dad calmly talked to me and said, he wanted to see me graduate and wanted me to move to Mesa, Arizona with them.  That was all he said.  Those few short words and I totally changed my plans and went with my family to Arizona.  Now I know the Holy Ghost was there that day, because I had my heart set on staying right up until that moment.  I couldn't bear the thought of leaving everything I had known up to that point to go to Arizona, of all places.  

Looking back, I know why I moved here.  It was only 9 months after the move that I met my husband at a Young Adult Dance.  I remembered thinking there is something about that young man I just danced with.  From that moment on, I knew he was the one.  That was my the beginning and the end of Young Adult dances for me.  I went with friends I knew from my first ward here in Arizona.  It was their first Young Adult dance too and they were determined to not ever go back to another dance if no one asked them to dance.  I was determined to make sure that didn't happen because I liked going to those kinds of dances in California, and I just knew they would be good here in Arizona with all the people that go.  The dances I went to California were Stake Youth Dances. They had them every month.  The Young Adult Dances covered the entire Phoenix Metropolitan area...anyone could come to those and they had dances every night except Monday, Tuesday and Sunday, and each dance was at a different location.  Most in Mesa and Tempe, but a couple were in Phoenix too.  I was in 80's dance craze heaven!  I loved it!  (I know, pathetic!) 

Needless to say, my friends did dance, but they rarely went to the dances with me.  In fact, they thought I was nuts for liking them so much.  Oh well.  

Shortly after I met Kevin, now remember I was still a Senior in High School when we met, and he was not going to have a girl wait for him while he was on his mission.  I guess I messed that up for him.   I met Kevin in February of 1985.  He received his mission call in April of 1985 and left on his mission the last week of July.  So, we didn't know each other that long before I agreed to "be here when he got home" was the exact way he worded it.  He even told me to date.  Silly man!  LOL!

At first I didn't date.  In fact, two weeks after he left I got call after call.  It was weird, because I never got asked out so much in all m life.  I kid you not, the phone range a lot more then ever.  Being determined to wait for my missionary, I turned down pretty much all of the people that called.  There was one guy who happened to be a pilot in the Air Force that called again, but I still turned him down and we never went out.  I chalked all the invitations up to just a test of my faith.  

Eventually I did date a couple people, but when Kevin came home, I was still here for him, just like he wanted. 

Looking back on my time in California and school I really LOVED living in California.  BUT, I know that if I would have staying there I would have ended up doing something I might live to regret now.  Thankfully, I had parents who loved me enough to let me make my own choices.  I know I made some good choices but I also made some bad choices too.  Even so, my parents were always there for me and I'm sure they saw some of the things I did and wished I would have made much better choices at times.  Needless to say, I am grateful for parents who were not pushy, didn't force me to do certain things at a certain time and in a certain way.  Don't get me wrong, I never just did whatever I wanted.  I had rules and standards I had to live by.  Sure, I bent those rules.  I am not gonna lie.  I did.  A lot!  BUT, I am very grateful for parents that were not pushy, and let me choose.  I know that if I would have ventured off too far they would have reeled me in.  I know that because they allowed me to learn and grow and make choices on my own that I have become the person I am today, and I am grateful for how they raised me.  I see parents all the time that try to force their children to do and be a certain way and it always leads those children to go exactly to that place each of those parents do not want their children to go, and sometime completely over the edge of no return.  I firmly believe that you have to follow a lead me, guide me, walk beside me kind of method to parenting if you want to be successful and raise children who love the Lord and have a desire to learn and grow into adulthood.  That is how I was raised.  I don't know if my parents planned it that way or if this just happened, but for Kevin and I that has always been our approach and it seems to be working so far.  

That being said, don't get me wrong....we have some heated discussions in this house.  Sometimes the lead me guide me part requires us as parents to be more like a football coach instead. You know with all the rough practices with the players on the sidelines vomiting because practice it too intense.  We don't always get to be the cheerleaders.  Sometimes we have to get in their face.  So-to-speak, to lead them along.  LOL!  

So, why am I telling you all of this?  Well, we had another one of those heated discussions tonight with Lexi.  I know, not exactly the best way to spend your birthday.  She got loud, I got loud.  Kevin chimed in and got loud.  Needless to say, it's not been fun.  AND now after spending the day in the heat and the sun, and after our group discussion Lexi has a migraine.  Not exactly how she wanted to spend her birthday.  I got a text from her Young Women's leaders asking me if she was coming to Mutual tonight.  She was up until the migraine hit.  Now she is down for the count.  They had something planned for her birthday.  I feel bad.  Most likely Lexi will be asleep soon.  At least I hope she will be.  

Well, this has been a day full of ups and downs.  I hope this isn't an indication of how the rest of the week will play out.  I don't think I am up for it.  Not with the weekend we have planned.  

I should go.  Lots to do.  Take care my friends and we will talk soon.  Promise!

From the Missionary:
Hey Everyone,

Happy Birthday Lexi and Dad!!!  This week has been pretty exciting!  We taught some really awesome lessons to some less active members in the ward who have promised us to attend Sacrament.  One of the members is a pretty recent convert who said that he wanted to start meeting with us more and in his words, "break bread", which pretty much means eat ribs and pizza.  Ha Ha.
This guy is an optometrist and we met in his office, so I asked him something about contacts just kind of making small talk.  Whatever I had asked got him excited because he asked to see my glasses to check the prescription.  Long story short, he gave me some contacts.  This pair should last about 30 days and he says he's gonna give me some more samples.  He is so cool and is always trying to help out.  

Anyways, some news that's a little crazy.  My area is changing!!!  I'm not getting transferred really.  I'm staying in the zone and the district, but we are trying to have less missionaries in the mission so an area in our zone has been shut down.  Anyways, long story short, our area has been changed to the very southwest part of the Bronx which is awesome and it covers Yankee Stadium.  We will also be covering our old area for single males because the Sisters aren't allowed to teach them.  So our area is pretty much the entire West Bronx, which has one of the nicest places in the Bronx and some of the worst.  The best part of this area change is that we are moving out of this crappy apartment into one that is three minutes away from Yankee Stadium.  The apartment we are moving into is so nice, I can't wait!  It's gonna be awesome to pretty much white wash an area.  Elder Holtom will be a great companion to do this will.  He's super educated and figures things out quick.  Sometimes I feel that me and him don't get along, but it's usually just me getting frustrated with things.  I feel like I know a lot more about being a missionary since the start of this cycle.  I will most likely be transferred after this cycle though.  So that will be fun.  I've gotten to know the Bronx pretty well since I've gone on splits in a lot of these parts.  It will be cool to see other parts of New York as well though.  I've heard that the Kingsbridge Zone, which is the one I'm in, is a pretty poopy area so that means it can only get better from here.  Well, anyways, We are gonna go move some stuff.  I will talk to you later. Byeeeeee!

Love you,

Elder Schmidt
Sent from my iPad

Quote of the Day:

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