March 26, 2013

2 years in Sendai Japan

My boy is leaving the country for 2 years to serve the Lord.  It is what most LDS moms hope and dream and prepare their baby boys for from day one, yet when it becomes reality it is a little shocking and hard to believe.

Dustin received his call almost 2 weeks ago.  He was visiting some buddies in Utah and going to 2 mission "farewells" when it came in the mail.  But he didn't want to wait until he got home a few days later to know what it said, so we with modern technology, we all gathered around the computer and got on Skype, and opened it and read it to him.

Scott got to be the lucky one but instead of just reading it to us he said "Holy Cow!" first and then read it out loud to the rest of us.  I realized too late I was looking at Scott and didn't see the reaction on Dustin's face, darn it.  Dustin seems pretty pumped about it but he is like his mother and doesn't show a whole lot of excitement about stuff.

He enters the MTC on July 17th.  Cameron, whose birthday is the 27th of July, said "You are going to miss my birthday."  so cute.

The first person I thought of was my friend from Japan who is in my former Utah ward.  and we found out Sendai it the mission she is from! How cool is that?  A girl I grew up with in my home ward went to that same mission about 20 years ago and taught and baptized Ayako and then Ayako and I ended up in the same ward with kids the same age.  Small world.

I am excited for him.  Nervous for him.  Happy for him.  Proud of him.  He will be a great missionary.

March 17, 2013

Candy Bars and Legos

Amazing things happened at my house the last few weeks.  My kids kept their bedrooms clean!  For two whole weeks! and counting...

Why?  because I posted a sign that said "Calling All Berkleys.  CLEAN BEDROOM CONTEST! If your room is the cleanest all week, including making your bed, you will get a king-sized candy bar on Saturday."

Of course I didn't win.  My bedroom is never the cleanest (much too my husband's dismay).

Brennen was ahead most of the week but he slipped on the bed making at the end.  Janessa won.  But I decided to reward everyone else with candy bars too--normal size because it was AMAZING that ALL the bedrooms stayed clean.

I wasn't planning on a second week but the following Sunday night Andy and Cameron's room was so clean, which is usually the dirtiest day of all because they have been home for 2 days in a row, that I had to continue the contest.  (It amazing to me how fast those boys, mostly Andy, can make a disaster area in their room).  Andy announced that HE was going to win the bedroom contest this week.  So I let it go on!  And win it he did!  He even made Cameron's bed some days.  He told me that Cameron maybe shouldn't get a big candy bar because he didn't help much.

When I first started this contest, my friend said maybe it was a bit unfair to Andy because he isn't that capable of keeping his room clean and it might just make him discouraged.  But we were both proved wrong!  just give the kid some motivation and he can accomplish anything.


The other thing that is amazing is my 3 youngest kids playing together semi-quietly with out fighting on a Sunday afternoon.  Because I got out the special castle Legos.  We bought a big set of Legos (I am sure there is a name but I don't know--it has knights and horses) years ago for the older boys for Christmas that are separate from the other Legos and the little kids don't often get to play with them because, well little kids aren't so careful sometimes.  Anyway, they have been playing nicely without fighting for a few hours.