Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Church Art Museum, Jane's Date, and How to Raise a Successful Missionary

I like this picture that Elisabeth snapped for Nora as she danced in the kitchen :). It's pretty normal to have someone singing, dancing, humming, playing the piano, or doing something musical at all times of the day. 
 The kids had a half day Thursday and no school Friday so I told them if they got all their stuff done (piano, chores etc), Friday morning by around 9-930ish, I would take them to temple square to see the updated Church Art History Museum and the children's area there. Can you see them in the picture below of the Salt Lake City temple?
 On the first floor of the Art Museum they had a 5 minute video you could watch of the first vision and the screen wrapped around the sides, which was cool, but it also made me a little dizzy when the camera moved in and out or up and down. I have a sensitive stomach. They had Hyrum Smith's actual clothes from when he was shot in carthage, and you can see the bullet hole! They had the clothing and pocket watches of many of the latter-day saints from that time in history, as well as other interesting artifacts. Below the kids listen to part of a scripture and then are supposed to act as scribe and write what was said to see if they'd be a good scribe :).
 Upstairs is the children's area and though it's a bit smaller, they still had some fun things for all my kids to do. Nora liked the little kid play area with the soft camels to climb on.
 The older kids enjoyed making pictures from these shapes,
 painting on a computer screen,
 and building temples with blocks. We spent about an hour and a half in the museum which was a good amount of time for them.
 March is Jane's month for her date night with mom and dad. Each of the children take a turn from month to month having a date with us and so it ends up being about 2 dates with mom and dad in the year, plus we take them on one-on-one dates or outings on occasion, which are many times a trip to the store with just mom or to home depot with just dad. Jane turns 6 this month and already got some birthday money from Granny Garnica, so first up on our date was to find new white church shoes. After she found the perfect shoes (her only criteria was that they MUST have a heel, which sounds like the opposite of something I would want :)) we went to Roxberry Juice and Jane got an all fruit smoothie and Scott and I got fresh juice. I LOVE fresh juice! Mine had carrots, lemon, apples and ginger and was delicious! We came home and got in pj's, and Jane of course put on her new church shoes,
and then we watched an episode of Studio C while we did a craft project that her Aunt Becca had brought out last weekend when they were here for Annabelle's baptism.
Saturday was busier than usual. I went for a 5 mile jog with my neighbor Lisa, took Jane to a gymnastics evaluation by 830am, Scott went for a jog, I went to a funeral of a sweet neighbor, took Annabelle and Charles to Federation(piano thing where they're judged on a piece or two) and Scott and I went to the temple. We came home and had dinner with the family and then Scott, Charles, Annabelle and I went to the adult session of stake conference where we sang in a family choir. The stake conference speakers were awesome, their names are Brad and Sandy Harris, and they taught us how to better prepare our children for missions; they just published a book called, A Parents Guide to Raising a Successful Missionary. A few things they mentioned that they think are extremely important (which they learned from their own experience from working at the MTC for years and from interviewing many, many mission presidents) are to: 1) make sure your child has an 'away from home' experience where they are gone for a week or longer; many kids come to MTC and it's their first time away from home and they feel very home sick and want to go home. This can include scout or young women camps, going to school or working away from home for a summer. 2) teach them to work; allow them to have a job that's not working for mom and dad; give them responsibilities at home, get them involved in sports or music where they need to learn to work and be disciplined.  3)give them leadership opportunities; allow them to lead. Allow them to be in charge of something. For this one I thought we should have the kids start not only helping make dinner, but once they're 10-12, have them also write down the grocerys they need for the dinner, we'll give them the money and they can come to the store with us and buy the ingredients and then make dinner on their own following a recipe. They also mentioned that many of the new missionaries have communication problems because they're so used to texting and emailing that they get really nervous and uncomfortable if they have to make a phone call or talk to an actual person. They suggested putting limits on usage, teaching them to only use electronics as a tool(ie calendar, scriptures, talks, etc but not for gaming and facebook and time wasting things), and putting them away in parents bedroom each night after a certain time. I also think it'd be good not to get electronics out until all important things are done like chores, scriptures, piano, homework etc (I do this for myself too; I do not even look at my phone until after I've read my scriptures and exercised), and to put them away during dinner so the family has time to connect. 

After stake conference we stopped by Kneaders where all pastries are half off on Saturday night after 8pm, and we got each of the children a treat and took them home to share. Elisabeth was wonderful and babysat twice that day, when we went to the temple and during stake conference! We have really good kids and we are so grateful for them and all their hard work. 

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