Saturday, January 26, 2013

Our Dream Home


 I keep singing "If I Were a Rich Man" from Fiddler on the Roof. In that song, Tevye describes his dream house.
I'd build a big tall house with rooms by the dozen
Right in the middle of the town,
A fine tin roof with real wooden floors below.
There would be one long staircase just going up
And one even longer coming down,
And one more leading nowhere, just for show.
And while his house might be a bit elaborate, it is his dream. 

My actual dream house where money didn't matter would probably be just as elaborate. But we live in a realistic world where money does matter so we might have to cut out the stair case "leading nowhere, just for show." ;)

Requirements:
  • In an area where we can get one of the housing grants (not all parts of the valley offer that and some cities have stricter rules than others)
  • Located in an accessible area (meaning near-ish the freeway/ trax/ etc)
  • Not on a busy street but not a dead end either
  • Previous owners can not be smokers (my allergies would go crazy!) 
    • and the house can not smell like pets either
  • We want an actual house--not mobile home or condo
  • Has to feed to good schools
  • Electric dryer hook-up
  • Kept in good shape and ready to move in 
  • The water tastes good (I will seriously ask to drink the water before we put an offer on it!)
  • Good Ward (how do you tell before you buy the home??)

Dreams:
  • Has a small formal living room, a large kitchen and a family room all on the same level (or the family room could be down a few stairs like in a tri-level house)
  • Has at least a 3/4 master bathroom
  • There are two rooms in addition to the master room on the same level/ right by each other.
  • Hopefully another room/ den/ office in the basement.
  • Has a good storage room
  • Garage
    • at least a carport
  • A yard big enough for Devin to play in
    • and grow a garden
  • Has a garbage disposal
  • No carpet in the dining room (ugh! Such a pain--that has to be the thing I like the least about our apartment right now)
  • The family room is large enough to play the Wii 
    • and have the family computer in there
  • Lots of natural light


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

How Could You Do This To Me?

Ever since our trip to Primary Children's Medical Center about a week ago, Devin constantly protests nap time and especially bedtime. My good little sleeper learned that if he screams long enough we will eventually pick him up and then he will get to go on a car ride and then play with all sorts of fun "toys" and nurses. (Granted, he really was in serious pain when we took him so I don't regret that at all!) But... he now uses that same screaming cry to try to trick us to come rescue him from his crib.

As he was protesting his nap time today, this story shared by Elder Todd D. Christofferson from April 2011 General Conference came to mind. (Watch the video now so you will understand the rest of my post!)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rr8xvw0cgw0&list=PL4E784EC0770935C0&index=4
As Devin laid screaming in his crib it was like I heard him say:
"How could you do this to me? I want to be up with you. I want to learn and play. And now you are forcing me to go to sleep, you have cut me down. How could you do this to me? I thought you were the mother here."
And I replied:
"Look, little baby, I am the mother here, and I know what I want you to be. I don't want you to be grumpy or crying. I want you to be a happy baby, and someday, little baby, when you once again go to sleep peacefully and stay asleep through the whole night, you are going to say, "Thank you, Mother, for loving me enough to cut me down."

It's absolutely terrible having to listen to him wail like he is in pain every time he lays in his crib. But I know he is fine. And I know someday he will thank me for "cutting him down" and so I leave him there to cry it out (or in his case... scream it out). Someday we will all be grateful when he sleeps easily and soundly again.

But this video goes deeper.

My car died almost a year ago and my husband totaled his car a few months ago. We have made four trips to the emergency room in less than seven months. We have all of these huge financial obstacles to face.

It is like I turn heavenward and say:
"How could you do this to us? We pay our tithing and keep the commandments. Why couldn't you have just told us that nothing was seriously wrong and we could have waited to see a regular doctor in the morning instead of the making trips to the expensive emergency room? Why couldn't you have prevented the accidents and made my car last just a little bit longer. How could you do this to us?"
And I heard the response:
"I am the gardener here. I know what I want you to do and who I want you to become."

As we are still in the middle of our huge financial struggle, it is hard to say, "Thank you, Mr. Gardener, for cutting me down, for loving me enough to hurt me." But someday... I'm sure we will. Someday we will look back on this journey and realize that it was helping to prepare us for who we need to be.