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    The Baptism

    Having a primary calling, my baptism attendance rate has averaged once a month for the past 9.  Each time..I feel wonder at the covenants made. Each time..the spirit floods my heart.  Each time..I'm more than a little overwhelmed.

    But that still didn't prepare me for my own son's baptism. 

    My firstborn. 

    My Aidan who, I swear, was just placed into my shaking mother arms last week. 

    The most meaningful moments in my life are when Jim uses the Priesthood on behalf of our children.  I am infinitely grateful for the profound promises, covenants and blessings that come through its Power. 

    I worked hard not to sob as Aidan was confirmed a member of the Church.  I wish I could remember verbatim what was said, but I don't & never will.  What I do & always will remember is how I felt as the words were spoken. 

    I also won't forget the support & love from family & friends.  Many recorded their testimonies for Aidan. I know he will cherish each word and sentiment some day. 

    After the baptism, we gathered at the house for donuts & milk. 

    Quite the party. 

    {Jared & Lily}

    {cousins in the play house}

    {D with his possibly favorite human, Uncle Tyler}

    {the man of the hour}{Azure Miss Mae}

    {A with Grandma Cyndee}

    I can hardly believe my baby has reached this milestone.  My arms still shake at the responsibility of mothering, but I know that with the Gospel of Jesus Christ we are beyond blessed with divine assistance. 


    Eight is Great!

    What represents 8 better than an octopus?!  This cake was one of my all-time favorites.  It just might have finally convinced me that single tiers can be just as great as bigger cakes.  It came together so easily, and was simply fun to create. 

    But you need to see it from a few more angles. 

    And with the birthday boy:

    I'm not sure what his birthday wish was, but he was ecstatic when he opened his gift from Grandma Kay & Papa.

    Roller blades.

    They make me crazy nervous, but I know I'm not even close to normal in that regard.  He hasn't seemed to mind the few bumps and bruises that have come with the territory.  My kids are SO much tougher than their mother! 

    More to come soon about my birthday boy...


    to Aidan at Eight

    After church today, Dad took you to your baptism interview.  You came home beaming.  Of course I wanted details.  I ideally don't want to be a meddling mother, but if I'm completely honest I'll admit that I would have loved a replay of every single word you spoke/breath you took in that room.  I prodded, but your only smiling reply was, "it was just fun." 

    And then you were off.  Humming to yourself for the next half hour.  I don't think you even know when it happens, but when you're happy you do that.  The happy undoubtedly was due to a generous portion of the spirit poured straight into your not-so-little-anymore self.

    Eight is big. 

    And Baptism is huge. 

    And you're ready. 

    On Wednesday night, you and I went on an official date.  It was a highlight of my year..of my mothering life, maybe.  And it's something we should definitely do more often.  Our first stop was the temple.  Where we took pictures of you for baptism invites.  You looked oh so dapper in your pin-striped suit.  Always a suit boy.  But it's high time we accessorize that handsome piece.  So we headed to grab the next 8th birthday necessity from the church bookstore.  Scriptures.  Who knew that a shiny new quad and case would be toted around like a prize pig?  You are thrilled with your new ownerships and proudly show everyone who'll look.

    Our last stop was per your specific request:  a fancy restaurant.  Charleston's was our choice, and you were an abundantly charming dining partner.  I laughed when you sidled up next to me in the booth, leaving the other side completely empty.  You proclaimed it "a real date".  Removed from the bustle of our everyday "busy" and your siblings, we talked & talked.  It made me realize that I need to simply stop and listen more often.  Because you have a lot to say. 

    The conversation ranged in topic from tackle football to softened hearts.  The latter is something we both struggle to master.  And I've been thinking a lot about that.  I guess if there's one thing I want to impress firmly on your mind at this important stage, it's this:  we ALL make mistakes.  we ALL fall short.  we ALL fail.   But the ultimate and final beauty of the gospel of Jesus Christ is that his Atonement conquers all.  I want you to learn to fail well.  "With grace,"  as Dad would say.  To ALWAYS pick yourself up immediately and keep trying. 

    Baptism is just the beginning.

    I love you, my Aidan Michael! 


    when we started our family

    I had no clue how hard it would be.  OR how completely Fulfilling.

    What I did know?  I loved Jim Scott.  

    And luckily he loved me back enough to dive into the unknown together.  

    Which led to this:

    (photo by the phenomenal Kim Skinner)

    My little family is - by far - my biggest joy.

    Each addition has changed and softened me, made me better.

    Jim - surprisingly - hasn't required the same refining.  I'll have to admit, I thought he would.  But he is a crazy softy and cues in so amazingly to the needs of those he loves.  I learned that quickly after I finally convinced him to marry me.

    Last week was father's day.  One thing I love most about Jim is how hard he works to cultivate relationships with each of our children.

    The boys {all three} have a current obsession with Dynasty Warriors on the PS3.  Ancient Chinese battles (don't be surprised if you see Azure dressed up as Lu Bu for Halloween in a few months).  Our summer indulgence:  they strategize at the dinnertable when Jim gets home and then play well past their schoolday bedtime. 

    It's a shift from the springtime evening norm - when it was much cooler outside than it is now.  Dad and all 3 could be found on most evenings kicking or throwing a ball around in the backyard.  Which is why Mom and all 3 decided to have this picture made to give him for father's day:

    (done by the phenomenal Megan Chambers)

    I love that she captured them exactly as they are this year - A's soccer obsession (which *almost* equals his dad's), D's season of coach pitch baseball, and Azure's unique wild-hair&full-skirt brand of girliness.  They adore their dad. 

    And I still do, too.


    a week ago today

    I turned 37. 

    Jim showed up on my doorstep with flowers.  At 9 a.m.

    And donuts.  Aidan then took over...opened the box, went down on one knee in front of me, and proclaimed, "please make your choice, my lady".  He is Jim in miniature.  Charming at will.

    I made a creamy mascarpone lemon cake.  Poked three candles in, turned out the lights, and watched the delight dance in the little Miss's eyes.  The boys gigled in turn. 

    Wish granted.

    But I'm skipping ahead of myself.  Earlier in the day I granted a wish.  For good measure.  By playing Dynasty Warriors with all three boys as Azure napped.  I couldn't follow the map..never can on video games, but all (or most) chiding of the birthday girl was reserved. 

    We grilled steaks for dinner.  From the cow that Jim's parents just slaughtered.  Jim thanked Heavenly Father for that creature's life and meat...and then for mine - life, meat, all.  I gave a hearty "amen". 

    When I'm smart enough to pause the spinning, I realize that this simple life is the sum of every wish I've ever had.