Thursday, November 17, 2011

Life is Changing

I think we are entering a new phase of life.

Kaylie is 2.
And potty trained (mostly)

Wade is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO ready for school it isn't even funny. We are BOTH jones'n for him to be in school full time.

Jaxon is coming home from school and doing all of his homework by himself (and mostly correct).

Abby has finally gotten on track with school after a VERY difficult adjustment from the move. But is excelling now, and showing more and more aptitude than ever.

The kids came home from school today, studied and we had dinner together. As my kids all sat around the table, I was filled with gratitude that I have them. They are adorable, and each have such unique personalities. Sure, there are crazy days when I want to pull my hair out, but right at that moment, that EXACT moment, I was having an idyllic life. Other than the fact my husband wasn't at dinner, and may not be at dinner for a very very long time.

Kids took showers, and were clean and happy and it was such a simple day. So simple.

Then Kaylie peed on the couch.

But still, it was idyllic for a minute.

It makes me want to never sign them up for another extra-curricular activity again. It is just too simple to not. All that running around, and scheduling. It is nice, to just be home, and enjoying each other.

And I am just so grateful for them, and I can see the season changing. I am getting to the "have older kids" stage of life, and I think it suits me. Yeah, it does. I guess baby days are a little more difficult than I would like to admit for me. But there are still times when I see those babies and I remember how fun they (WADE) was/are. But so. much. work.

I am grateful for this moment. And as frustrating as it was to have our life be in limbo for three years, I see some method to it now. I don't think I could have done this work schedule with a small baby. Or with a couple small babies. It is better now, and we are blessed.

I guess you can't always see your future, but someone else can. Best just to rely on Him.

Just my luck

I went on a great trip to San Francisco this weekend. It was to celebrate my mom's 70th birthday. I don't know what YOU think 70 looks like, but it looks way better than I thought it would!

My in-laws came to take care of my kids so that I could go. I love them so much. It was invaluable time that I got to spend with my sister-friends. Kinda like sister-wives, but not. Time that we get to spend together like this is irreplaceable. I am grateful to call them "friends" as well as sisters. I love them.

Since we don't all live in the same state, traveling together is pretty much the only chance we get to see each other on a personal level, and it is SO much more personal when you aren't juggling kids at the same time. I highly recommend it.

We spent almost all of our time SHOPPING. And EATING. Because that is what Stewart women do.

And hanging out with this guy, and Brigitte. (That is my sis, Hillary with her new bangs. Which has given her an alternative name of Brigitte or Gretchen... take your pick.)

We spent a LOT of time in shoe departments. And those of us who HAVE cash, dropped a load of it.

We walked past this square probably 30 times in three days.
It was just getting the finishing touches of Holiday flare.

Some people leave their heart there... We just left lots of great memories.

And lots of great restaurants.

I would say San Francisco is pretty much the perfect destination for such an event, and it was great to be there with my sister friends... and mom. HAPPY 70th BIRTHDAY MOM! WE LOVE YOU!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Crash

I walked into church today, tired, but okay.
I have gotten a horrible cold, probably due to stress and lack of sleep.
I was going in to church by myself (with the kids), and unless I am at the store, I don't really see Peter at all during the day.
He leaves at 8 a.m. and comes home at 11:30. Works for a few more hours on things he couldn't do during the day, and then does it all again the next day.

Hopefully THAT won't last forever.

I worked at the store on Friday, and Saturday night, so, I felt like I have seen him a bit, but I am sure the kids are wondering what has happened to him.

I felt fine at church, but as soon as the testimonies started, I started crying.
Like inconsolable crying.
I could not stop.
I think it was a mixture of exhaustion and gratitude.

As I looked around the room, I saw face after face after face of people who had been at the store over the weekend.
Even staff members, who had worked all weekend.
I felt overwhelmed by what had happened.

Making the decision to move was completely gut wrenching.
We did not want to move AGAIN.
We did not want to uproot the kids AGAIN.
We did not want to loose all the services and the school that Jaxon was at.
We did not want to uproot Abby, who tends to have the most difficult time with moving.
We did not want to "start over" again.

At the same time, our struggles in Arizona seemed never ending.
I never felt accepted.
And even though I liked Arizona, I never felt "at home."
I never found a niche.
Peter never found a stable work environment.
As much as we tried our best to make it work, it didn't.
And we felt COMPELLED to move.
There was nothing there that made us feel like we were anchored there.

But, it was confirmed to us over and over and over again that we were supposed to "be here".
As I looked around the room today, and realized how many faces I had seen at the store over the weekend, I felt the love.

The love from our ward family, our new environment, and our Heavenly Father.

He knew we would need support. In all sorts of ways, and he gave it to us.
In spades.

Not only did they just physically show up at our store, but they told friends, passed out coupons and continued to share our story with everyone they knew.
It was an amazing outpouring of love.
And as I sat there today, I had it confirmed to me once again, that we were in the right place.
I am overwhelmed by the love and support.
I am overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity.
And most importantly,

I am grateful.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

It's Midnight

On a Friday night, and I am having a hard time winding down.
It is exhilarating at the store on a Friday night.
It was intense.
There were so many people waiting.
Waiting WAY TOO LONG for a pizza.
But our staff is new, and we were slightly under-prepared for such a big crush.
We did 57 pizzas on our first night, and 160 our second.
I was a crazy day.
I went over to the store earlier in the day to "ask Peter a question" and I got caught making dough balls because someone had a whole pile of dough on the counter, but had to go on break.
I put on an apron, and went to work.
I was basically in my pajamas.
I don't think anyone I knew came into the store.
Thank heavens.
Hopefully my apron made me look more official than I was.

I had Kaylie with me, and luckily, I had downloaded an App on my phone for puzzles. She is obsessed with it, and it gets me out of just about any bind I can think of with her.
I know.
Two year old.
But I guess that is how it is going to be for her.
With us starting this business.

I don't ever want to forget the vision of her, perched on two boxes, her bum on one, her feet on the other, playing her puzzles... Every once in a while, she would push the wrong button and someone would have to help her fix the app. Someone without gloves on or washed hands.

All along this is what Peter has wanted to do.
I mean, I wanted him to do what he wanted to do, and I wanted to do it too, but I didn't realize what my hand would be.

I'll be honest.
I love it.
I really love it.
I love the staff.
I love the environment.
I love it when I come home smelling like dough.
(I like dough)
I love that I worked over there for about 8 hours today. Sometimes with a kid, sometimes without.

I love the way Wade says Papa Murphy's.
I love the way my kids talk about it.
I love the pride that comes with being a small business owner.
I love making dough balls.
I love talking to people, and trying to make their wait a little shorter.

I just love it,
More than I thought I would.
I guess, in the end, I didn't realize how much I would be in the store.
And I probably won't be too often.
Because my kids need at least ONE parent.
And right now, I am all they have.
But I love being there.
It's an amazing feeling to know that you have worked so hard, and been through so much to make it happen.

I loved putting a smile on people's faces. People who have waited "10 years" "5 years" or however long to have Papa Murphy's pizza in their home town. And believe me, the stories that we heard today were NUMEROUS.

People were stalking our store until we opened. Just waiting, and waiting and waiting. And I have to say, that if I was in a town, that was waiting for a Papa Murphy's. I would have been stalking the store too to see when it opened.

I know how they feel. And I am so happy to bring them what they want.
Just a few more (okay 100 more) kinks to work out.
But we'll get there.

I just hope all the people who waited WAY too long for their pizza tonight, will be back.
It was Amazing.


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