Monday, October 24, 2011

3 Growing Babies!

Here are a few of the latest pictures we took of our 3 babies! They are growing so fast! Brylee (Brian and Becca's) is on the left, then Berkley (Lori and Dan's) and then Makyla, our sweet little baby, well, not so little, but sweet.:)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Makyla's Blessing Day

Makyla was blessed Sunday, August 7th. She's grown so fast I was worried she wouldn't fit in her blessing dress, but thankfully it still fit.:) My mom made her afaghan and I love it. It was just what I wanted. Thanks, Mom. Martin's parents and Traci and her family came up for the occasion (plus all of the fam that already lives in Cokeville were there) and we really appreciated the love and support. Martin gave her a beautiful blessing and we are just so thankful to have this sweet spirit in our home. We are enjoying her so much!

The Girls

This is what every attempt we make to take a picture of all 5 kids turns out to be:;) There's always one of them that's not willing to cooperate.

It was a great day and thanks again everyone for your love and support. It really helped make the day a special one for us!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Makyla Zoe...and Cousins

Well, I know it's a little late since she is a month old now, but Makyla Zoe finally arrived! She was born on June 6th and she weighed 8 lbs 2 oz and was 20 inches long (our biggest baby). I was induced early the morning of the 6th and everything went really well for the most part. We are so thankful to have her here safe and sound. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly they become such a big part of our family. It seems like we have always had her! The kids love her so much! Kyson is the one that has surprised me the most because I was worried he would be mean to her (which may still happen), but instead he just stops by for a quick kiss and rocks her once in a while, and that's really about it. Mylee and Kaybree have been a tremendous help with her while Martin was at work. Now that they are strong enough to hold her on their own and rock her, they have been able to calm her down at times when I just can't get to her yet. Mireya can even be a help if I don't need her to move around with her. And she is the most patient with her when she is screaming. She will just hold her or sit right by her and stroke her face or hold her hand while singing her one of her made-up songs that she so loves to sing. It's the sweetest thing. That's one thing I have enjoyed so much with this baby--watching the other kids' reactions to her.

Our 5, that sounds like a big number.:)

One of the most amazing things about Makyla's birth is that she had 2 cousins born within 4 weeks of her birth. Berkley (Lori and Dan's) was born May 5th, Brylee (Brian and Becca's) was born May 31st, and then Makyla on June 6th. Berkley was 5 weeks early, but all of these babies were due within a few days of each other. We certainly have never thought these babies were a coincidence considering they all began their journey to earth the same week, shortly after Zoe passed away (even Berkley, who was adopted). What a blessing these sweet little girls are! In quiet moments when I hold my sweet, little angel I think of Zoe and how thankful I am that Heavenly Father sent us this sweet reminder of her.

Berkley, Makyla, Brylee

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Healing Pregnancy

(I had this in paragraphs, but for some reason it's posting it as one big paragraph. Sorry.)Most of you already know about the upcoming addition to our family, but since I have been so horrible about keeping up our blog, I thought I had better make an official announcement!:) Martinez #5 is due to arrive the beginning of June (in about 9 weeks for those who are counting). We are all getting very excited to meet this new little one in just a couple months, but this pregnancy has been very different from my other pregnancies and the last 7 months have been a major learning experience that I really have felt I needed to share. The first major difference was that this pregnancy was 100% unplanned and unexpected. I am a planner, especially when it comes to when we are going to add to our family, so it was a bit of a shock to us. Normally, I would have been surprised, but so thankful that we don't struggle with the infertility that so many couples deal with, and I would've just moved on, excited about the upcoming addition to our family. This situation was a little different, I'm a little ashamed to say. Finding out I was pregnant just 6 weeks after the passing away of my dear friend and sister, for the 2nd time in that short period, I found myself questioning the Lord. I had felt peace and understanding about the passing away of Zoe and was working through those emotions, but was still very much mourning her loss. I was kind of a wreck to be perfectly honest, and now the Lord added this to my plate? A wonderful blessing, but I am already a very busy mother and just wasn't ready to take on something so big when I was struggling to just make it through each day. I also had a major fear of miscarriage because of how emotional and exhausted I was all of the time as I mourned. Thankfully, my husband didn't freak out like I did and as I crumbled in a ball in his arms, he was able to point out all of the blessings that were going to come from having this baby and reminded me that the Lord has a bigger plan and can see the big picture, and I just needed to have faith in His plan for us. Over the next couple months, whenever I would start to feel overwhelmed or found myself questioning the Lord's plan for us, I was able to refer to that counsel and I found myself conversing with the Lord often, thanking Him for the opportunity to bring this sweet spirit into our home, but also kind of turning all of my fears and overwhelming emotions over to Him and trying to have complete faith in His plan for us because at the time, I just didn't know what else to do. Now, 7 months into this pregnancy and the baby coming in just a couple short months, I can say that my attitude about this baby has completely changed and has been one of the biggest blessings in our lives. Without going into a tremendous amount of detail, I'll elaborate a little bit (which is something I obviously don't struggle with). Many of you may not know this, but the day Zoe passed away, I happened to show up to visit her literally seconds after Kevin noticed her lips were a little blue. The events that took place in the next couple of hours were extremely traumatic. The things I witnessed and experienced that day would haunt me from that night through the next several months. I would do okay during the day. I was obviously deeply mourning, and it was a difficult time for me, for all of us. As soon as the sun would start to go down, another struggle would begin. At the time my family asked me if it was because I was afraid of dying in my sleep as Zoe had. No. That wasn't it at all. Every night I replayed the events of that day over and over and over. I could vividly recall everything I saw and did and felt and I would get very sick and emotional and wasn't sleeping at all really. I couldn't be alone at night at all. I wasn't able to attend young women activities because then I would be coming home when it was dark to a dark house, and I wasn't able to sleep alone. How thankful I am for a loving and understanding family. When Traci and Lori came to visit, they stayed with me and one of them would sleep with me. My mom came and slept with me several nights and if she was delayed for some reason, then Becca would come sit with me until my mom was able to arrive. And when Martin was home, he could sense when I was awake and struggling and he would just hold me tight and comfort me. You're probably wondering what this has to do with my pregnancy. Well, a tremendous amount of healing has taken place throughout this pregnancy. My inability to sleep at all and my fear of the dark slowly went away with the fatigue and sickness of a first-trimester pregnancy. I was so exhausted and sick that when night came, I would fall into bed and before long, the flashbacks came less often until they eventually quit coming at all. This pregnancy has been able to give me a new focus as well. For the first while after losing Zoe, it was hard for me to find value in doing any mundane tasks. Who cared if my house was clean, the laundry was done, or if my flowers got trimmed for the upcoming winter? I certainly didn't. The only thing that really mattered to me was my family and my relationship with the Lord. Rather than focusing on our loss, I was able to gradually turn my focus on all of the tremendous blessings that we have and the blessing that this sweet baby was going to be in our home. I have also felt like this baby has been a very special gift to help me remember Zoe. We joke in our family that Zoe must've told the Lord that if He had to take her, then He needed to send Becca and I these babies. (Becca is due with a baby girl just a few days after me.) Everyone thought I would probably have another boy, a friend for Kyson to help him keep his sanity around all of the girls in our house. I thought so at first as well, but the closer I got to my ultrasound, I started feeling very strongly that we were going to have another girl. And how fitting that would be since this pregnancy and baby had helped me heal so much from the loss of one of my dearest friends. So when the ultrasound tech said it was another girl, the tears streamed down my face. So even though the last 7 months, especially the first 5 after Zoe passed away, have been extremely difficult and I have found myself questioning the Lord at times, how thankful I am for His bigger plan for us. How thankful I am for this sweet little spirit, Makyla Zoe, and for the daily reminder we are going to have of the Zoe that impacted our lives so much in the short time we were able to know her on this earth. We are so excited and looking forward to meeting this sweet little baby that has already impacted our family so much!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Zoe; My Sister, My Friend

I have neglected writing this because I have been nervous to revisit the pain of the last couple weeks, but I have felt a desire, a need to share some things that I loved so deeply about Zoe. I've been reflecting a lot about Zoe, her life, the impact she had on my life and I never want to forget. There were so many qualitites Zoe had that made her who she was. After spending the last week with her family, I have understood more where some of these qualities came from. Here are a few things that I just loved about Zoe:

  • She always gave us her opinion. It took the Nates a while to get used to his one, but we grew to love and appreciate her honesty. I was always so excited to show Zoe anything I had bought or done because I knew she would be completely honest with me.

  • She loved animals. She had a dog that we all thought of as a nuisance, but she loved her and took such good care of her. She rescued a few animals in town and found them a home.

  • She was always working on a home-improvement project. She has gallons of paint lined up in her house, waiting for her next project. She didn't paint anything the way most of the rest of us do it either. She had her own quirky way of doing it and I loved it! In her house right now, there are like 4 different colors of paint on her bathroom wall. She would always paint several strips of paint on walls throughout her house until she found the right shade. Then she would gradually work on it every day until it was finally finished several weeks later!:)

  • She's famous around Cokeville for her driving. People got used to pulling over when they saw her gold van drive down the street! No, she wasn't that bad, but she had to be pulled out of a few snow banks and it was always an adventure to travel with Zoe.

  • She had a love of all peoploe, regardless of age or circumstance. She had some of the most unlikely friends; age, race, religion didn't matter to her. She could be a friend and see the good in everyone.

  • She loved to socialize. She wouldn't just run into The Store for a quick gallon of milk. She would stay and visit for a few minutes. She would do the same when she went to the diner or when she delivered her Allison's Pantry orders.

  • She had beautiful, flawless skin. She wore little make-up, but she didn't need to. She had the most beautiful green eyes and when she would get dressed up, she was stunning.

  • She didn't always keep her house spotless (not because she wasn't capable--she had the cleanest house in town when she dug in), but it's because she was always playing with the kids, reading to them, traveling with Kevin, spending time with all of us. What wisdom that was as she had such a short time to nourish those relationships.

  • Her accent was pretty much gone in her everyday conversation other than a few English phrases she always used, but whenever she talked to her family on the phone her accent was so thick. I loved being around when she was talking to her mom or sisters!

  • Everyone knows how much my family loves to support the athletic programs in Cokeville. Well, Zoe was always right there with us, but for different reasons. She was always worried she had missed the cheerleaders dance.:)

  • She loved England and would often tell us of the many things that were better in England. She loved to visit her family and really loved her homeland.

  • She loved the elderly. She served my grandma Perkins so much before she passed away and that was her nature.

  • She used to research everything before she would buy it or do it. She researched for hours before she planted her little garden, before she bought a car seat for the kids, etc.

  • She was a very generous person. She would've given money or food to anyone if she knew they needed it, and she did to several people.

  • She had a testimony of the gospel. She had tremendous faith to join the church, leave her family in England, and move to America to be with Kev. As we tidied up the house for her family to come stay this last week, it was apparent that the gospel was a part of her everyday life.

  • She was my best friend, my sister. I saw her nearly every day. She spent so much time in our home and we did nearly everything together. Whenever I needed to go out of town for something, Zoe would go with me. I could talk to her about anything. She would always pop in and say she only had a minute and then several hours later, she would finally gather up the kids and go home. I cherish those times. Lori was telling me this last week that I need a "Sarah" in my life (Sarah is the name of her good friend in Kaysville). What she meant was that I needed someone I could talk to about anything, someone who could step in and take care of my kids on a moment's notice, someone who could take my husband cupcakes from me if I happened to be out of town for his birthday. I simply said, "Zoe was my Sarah." And she was. I miss her so deeply every day. She was such a huge part of my life. The pain I have felt over the last two weeks has been the far greatest pain I have ever experienced, but my testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ has been strengthened so much. When I felt I could bear the pain no more, through the power of the priesthood and through the Atonement of Christ, I was able to feel peace and understanding. I don't have all of the answers, but I have come to an understanding that whatever mission the Lord has for her on the other side is very important, so imortant that He felt it necessary to take her from her husband and two children for a short time. Our family has always been very close, but through this trial, we have been strengthened so much and have grown so much closer. It has been two weeks full of the most tremendous pain, but two weeks full of the most sacred spiritual experiences we have shared as a family. I know there are many tough days ahead, but after my experiences the last couple weeks, I cannot deny the power of the priesthood, that through the Atonement our pain can be taken away, that the plan of salvation is real, that the Comforter is real, and that if I live worthily, I will see my sister, my best friend again.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

A Child's Prayer

Mireya's prayers have been so sweet lately. Her prayer tonight was pretty entertaining:

Thank you for my family. Please help me to not be wiggly in church and to sit nice and not throw fits. And please help me to be a nice girl. And please help me to not get water on the floor when I'm in the tub. Please help me keep the water in the tub so my mom won't slip on the floor and fall and scream at me. And please bless all our family.

Can you tell some things that we've talked about the last couple days? I ran in the bathroom last night and slipped and fell on the water and may have yelled at Mireya a little bit about keeping the water in the tub. Also, we had to have a little chat about how to sit reverently on the way home from church.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

April has kept us pretty busy as usual. The kids have loved having a warm day here and there. Kyson is growing up so fast we can't believe it!! He is our one child that loves to be rough-housed with. He loves to be thrown in the air. Martin gets a pretty big kick out of it!:)

Kyson also loves licorice. When it's late afternoon and it's too early for bed, but too late for another nap, sometimes the best answer to his orneriness is a piece of Red Vines licorice. He loves to gnaw on it. It makes a pretty big mess, but it's amazing what we're willing to do for a little peace and quiet.:)
Kamille was baptized on Easter weekend so that was fun to have everyone come visit for that. Here is a picture of all the grandkids, but Hallee and Boston. Boston had the flu so he was at Grandma and Grandpa's house. Pretty cute kids, huh?
Here is a picture of me and the kids at the baptism. I was the pianist for the baptism and I know that's not a big deal to most people, but I don't usually play in front of people. Martin and I both play a lot in the comfort of our home, but that's about it for me. I was really nervous and practiced a ton! Kamille sang a solo and she did a beautiful job. I was so worried I was going to mess up while she was singing! Thankfully I didn't. Phew!!!

Here are the Parkers and Delgados that were able to attend. David came a little later, but didn't quite make it in time for the baptism. Aren't they so cute?! I didn't get a picture of any of the other families. (They are on Becca's blog though.)

I love this picture of Jasmine and Paisley. I had to post it!

Here are 2 of the 3 Nate babies that were born this past year. Kyson was having a nap, so we have yet to get all three babies in one picture, but aren't Paisley and Olivia cute together? They are only 5 hours apart, so it's fun to see them grow up together.

And, of course, since it was Easter weekend, we had to dye Easter eggs. The kids had a great time. I may have been a little over organized though, so they lost interest a little quicker than usual. I had visions of paint flying around the kitchen and eggs being dropped everywhere, so I went down the line, handed out an egg to everyone, then went back down the line with another egg. They got tired of waiting for the next egg.:) Next year I guess I'll deal with the total mayhem so they have more fun!:) (My plan did work, however. The mess was a breeze to clean up!)

The other day when the kids got bored while I was folding laundry, this is the game they came up with!! Kyson wasn't quite sure what to think of it, but the girls loved it! The unfortunate part is that Kaybree weighs too much for Mireya to push her in the laundry basket, so Kaybree definitely got the short end of that deal!

A short time later, this is what I found them doing to pass the time. Kaybree has gotten into a hair-fixing mood lately. They're usually a little unorthodox, but she loves doing it. Too bad she doesn't want me to fix HER hair cute anymore.

One really important thing that happened this month was Mireya's birthday!! She was so excited to turn 3. I felt a little badly because on her real birthday everyone called her to talk to her, but I wouldn't let them because we didn't actually celebrate her birthday for a whole other week when Martin got home. Thankfully she's still young enough to do that this year.:) Then on the day we did celebrate her b-day, I had to call all those people back and have them talk to her so she would know who had called her on her b-day!! She was so cute all day. Every time I asked her what she wanted for her b-day she would say she wanted a cake and cupcakes. She couldn't tell me what she wanted for a present, so it was a little difficult shopping for her, but we got the job done.

This is her adorable Dora cake that Sue Richardson made for her. Isn't it perfect and adorable?! Mireya couldn't believe she got a Dora cake. She is crazy for Dora right now. I think we're beginning to own stock in the Dora company these days.:) Everyone came down for cake and ice cream and she was feelin' pretty special. Anyway, thanks, Sue.

Here is Mireya in her new dance outfit. She has to wear it every day now. She loves to sing and dance. She is famous in the family for her "horsey dance." I never knew it was possible for such little hips to move so much.:)
Pictures like this one remind me once again how little my kids look like me (other than Kaybree).
I think that pretty much wraps up the last few weeks. We're so thankful to finally be getting some warmer weather!!