This is my family... we seem to always have fun, and I love to spend time with them. There are 7 kids and of course my wonderful parents. I was able to spend some time with my family for the last Christmas in my parents house. This wasn't just any house, this was the house we all grew up in. It is a house with many stories and many memories.
|This was from Christmas family party 2011, too bad there is so much red eye in the picture.|
These are my amazing parents! They are just that, truly amazing! They decided last year sometime that they wanted to serve a mission for their church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. (To learn more about it click here.) I belong to this same church and believe in it with all my heart! It is what has kept me strong in going when I didn't think I could, to keep the faith when I wasn't sure about things. It is ultimately what has made my life turn out in the way it has. I can't take all the credit for it, since my parents shaped my life, showed me the way and taught me all these things, through their daily examples of how they lived their life. They have never given up on my even when I may have been in troubled waters.
Once my parents decided to go on their mission, a few things had to take place. One was to retire. Two went right with one, once they retired they would need to sell their home. I remember leaving my comfortable home with my own family after living there for 8 years, and how sad it was to leave. The house held so many precious memories, first steps, first birthdays, first lost teeth, first 2 wheel bike ride, all my precious babies grew up there. I just kept wondering how we could leave such a place of so many memories and love. As my parents talked about their plan to sell their home and go on their mission many of these feelings came again, how could we (or them really) leave such a house with so many memories. This is the house that I was raised in, for my whole life! My parents had lived there for almost 40 years! After all, a house is just a house, it is just a building. It is the people in that house that make it what you love or that make those memories. It still wasn't totally easy, but I knew the time was here to move on, for my parents to serve a mission together.
The amazing thing is that they have given so much to do this. My mom loved her job, she loved working with the kindergarten kids, doing music especially. You would not believe the things she has collected for those little songs. I remember a time she was visiting me and she picked up a bunch of little flags for her class. I'm sure that wasn't the first time. I think every time she visits she buys a few dozen post cards and sends them to her grandkids and her students too.
Another amazing this is that my dad gave up his dream shop. I can remember the years and years he was going to build a shop. I rememeber center blocks put in place in one corner of the field where it was going to go, and then something happened (I was little, I don't remember what it was) and that shop was put on hold. Finally many years after us kids were gone, or should have been gone, he built his shop. His brother's came to visit and they built it. I mentioned before that one day after I knew they would be leaving for their mission and their house would be sold, I just walked in the shop and I couldn't help but to just cry. My dad had his shop finally, and now its gone. It turned out that the shop was able to be kept since it was on a seperate peice of property. Although it is just that, a piece of property that if I remember right is too small to put a house on it.
What else is amazing? My mom.... she gave up so much for this mission. She gave up so much to serve her Heavenly Father, to help others have what she has, the truth and knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ. She gave up her pets. Maybe for some who aren't really animal or pet people won't understand, but this was a HUGE deal! Not only did she give up her cute little dog, but also her bird and many other farm animals that ran around outside. Although she didn't give up her horse, she is leaving it behind with a family member who will care for it while she is gone.
Family is also something my parents gave up in some ways too. They will be in Iowa now so that means family dinners, birthday parties, Easter, Christmas, births of new great-grand babies, Thanksgiving.... all those sort of things my parents will be absent at these gatherings. My mom was having such a hard time leaving her grandkids, especially the ones she sees more often. I heard my dad say to her one day, "I didn't know what I was asking you to do when I asked you to go on a mission." Anytime a certain little name was brought up after my parents had left, her eyes got tears.
I am just amazed at this whole thing my parents are doing. It is just AMAZING to me! I wonder if I would be able to do the same thing? Sometimes the small things seem hard to do, like sacrificing a little of my time to help someone else out, or to go to another meeting. I hope when the time comes that Robert and I can serve a mission, I hope that I too will be able to do as they did and put God first. After all, he gave us everything right?
I know they will be blessed, in fact I know what they are doing will bless my family too. I am so proud of my parents. I am so glad they are being such an example to my own family and serving a mission. I know they will be a blessing to the area they serve and also those people they will be around.
My parents are AMAZING!!