Monday, April 2, 2018

Easter and General Conference

Easter, April Fool's, AND Conference fell on the same Sunday this year! It was a delightful day and I was so grateful that it was peaceful and restorative. Conference seems to be kind of a crapshoot with little kids - some times it's really stressful and you get nothing out of it, but luckily the kids were actually very accommodating and reverent this weekend. There were a lot of awesome changes and announcements (no more HP Group, transitioning from HT/VT to "ministering," 7 new temples (including India and Russia!), two new apostles (Gong and Soares), and a Solemn Assembly where we had the opportunity to sustain our new prophet, Russell M. Nelson.) It was exciting to see the prophet be so active and involved in the conference...I think he spoke 6 times! Poor President Monson was so ill for the past few years that we didn't get to hear from him much, so I think the contrast was pretty stark in this conference with President Nelson very visible and verbal. What I remember most of what he spoke about is how critical it is for us to receive personal revelation.

King Rippy
 My mom went to Utah this week to be with family and it was fun to live vicariously through her. All the family in town gathered for an Easter family home evening, which is special by itself, but it was extra wonderful because my three Aamodt boy cousins were all together with the family, which hasn't happened in yearssss for various reasons. I love these pictures of them with Grammy Bee.



 Family is SO IMPORTANT! It felt good to watch General Conference as a family. We went over to the Poulsens for breakfast and the Sunday morning session, and that was really nice.



 Since we didn't have church on Easter Sunday, Natalie got to wear her Easter dress to school one day this week. She looked absolutely darling!


 Jack was the first to wake up on Easter morning, and he was thrilled with his Spiderman egg!



 Then Natalie woke up and she couldn't believe this Easter bunny was hers...she had seen it in our trunk last week, and she answered her own question by saying we got it for the Easter bunny. I ran with that, letting her think that I was giving it away, and then had Austin write a note from the Easter bunny saying he wanted Natalie to have it and he was happy she was a good girl. Ah, good ol' parenting lies : )


Stockton enjoyed his Darth Vader egg, preferring to hold it fondly instead of unwrapping it right away. I intentionally kept Easter simple this year, trying to keep the focus on the Savior instead of the commercialism. I waited for a quiet moment that morning to talk to Natalie about when Mary went to the tomb and saw that it was empty, and then heard Jesus say her name and know that He was risen. I feel a lot of pressure to teach our children about the Gospel in the right way and at the right time...it feels hard and overwhelming, but I think I'm getting better at making it natural. I want them to have strong testimonies and know everything I know, but obviously they need to come to that themselves, with our loving guidance. Austin took notes from one of the Conference talks this weekend about how we can guide our children, and shared those ideas with us at family home evening tonight. We will work on these goals: never skip FHE, pray out loud for members of the family, and take advantage of spontaneous teaching opportunities. (talk by Elder Durrant)


We did an Easter brunch/egg hunt earlier this week with all the mom friends. It was chaotic and perfect haha. Natalie was at school, but Stockton found one egg and was content, while Jack hoarded his eggs and went off in isolation to examine his findings.


I finally found Jack hiding down this hallway, not wanting to be interrupted haha!



 We didn't make it back in time from Grand Island to watch Conference with the boys, so we watched some of it in the car. I was impressed with Natalie's interest in the talks - she was engaged and could tell me what the talks were about. Her favorite talk was from Sunday morning about "pure love," and she is going to be in charge of the FHE lesson next week with that talk.


Jack fell asleep and it was too tempting to just be cozy together instead of laying him down. Stockton loved when the choir sang! He always said, "that was a gooooood song. Can they do another one?"

Natalie trying to be as close to me as possible




 It is good to be loved. I hope our children always want to be close to us!



We capped the day off by watching the jazz game with the Stauffers. The boys were eating peanuts together on the couch and Emily and I thought they looked really cute together haha.


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