Friday, September 26, 2014

September Giveaway Winner

Good Morning Kari!!!
Break out the maple syrup, because YOU are the winner of the Waring Pro Double Waffle Maker!
Thank you to all of you wonderful readers that entered. The next quarterly giveaway will be Friday, November 21st, 2014.

Thursday, September 25, 2014


One year ago today, we took Sadie to the MTC.  One year later I am celebrating all she's accomplished and the all the growth that's taken place because of her mission. And best of all, I am celebrating that she will be home in six months, which after doing a year, just doesn't seem like that long.
Texas A & M, World's largest Aggie ring

Friday, September 19, 2014

september giveaway

Waffle love.  We feel it at our house.  The only problem?  Trying to make the waffles fast enough for us to all sit down around the table together.  Solution? 

The Waring Pro Double Waffle Maker.  
(see giveaway rules below)

And don't forget to check out our very favorite waffle recipe here

Brillant right? The model of efficiency.
          {How to enter}
1. Become a follower of terra's earth (by liking terra's earth on facebook OR via google friends connect.)
2. Leave a comment on this post telling me how you follow.
3. Also leave a contact email (with comment) if it's not linked to your profile (so I can let you know if you win:)

One winner will be selected from the comments using and announced on September 26th, 2014.

{the giveaway closes on Sept. 25th, 2014 at midnight}
{contest open to those residing in the intercontinental u.s.-no p.o. boxes please)

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

depression hurts, hope floats

As I write this post, it's raining again.  But, this time,  it's a more steady, committed rain, and our temperature has (finally) dropped below ninety.  I've been thinking about writing this post for a very long time.  Let me start by saying that what I am about to share is my experience.  The causes and outcomes of depression are as varied as the treatments. The way one person experiences depression is often very different than another.
      I graduated from Arizona State with a BA in psychology.  I'm very familiar with the mental health field.  I have referred many, many people to counseling.  I've had close friends and family that have battled depression.  I thought I knew what depression looked like and what it was.  And I did.  From the outside.
     People often throw around the phrase, "I'm depressed."  In the past, I've said it myself.  And then, for three solid months,  I developed a much greater understanding of what it really meant to be "depressed".  I'm generally a happy and emotionally healthy person. It was literally shocking one morning for me to wake up, take inventory of what I had been feeling for weeks, and then say these words in my head, 'I am suffering from clinical depression'.
     For me, the depression was very physical.  There was a cartoon in the eighties…The Road Runner show (remember?).  This insane coyote was always trying to take out this crazy happy road runner by dropping an anvil (or an ACME safe) on his head. I visualized that anvil all the time.  I was walking around with it on my chest twenty four/ seven.  My heart hurt, my spirit hurt.
     I put on a good show.  On most days, I felt kind of paralyzed on the couch or my bed.  The thought of having to do even the most menial task was completely over whelming.  But, every day at two o'clock, I would manage to put on my clothes and my make-up and sometimes even a smile before my kids walked in the door. I'm so very grateful that I was still able to function on some level.    
     For me, depression was something that I descended into slowly.   I say "descended" because it wasn't something that happened overnight.  It was gradual and powerful.  Some of my depression was (for sure) situational.  Some of it was…. hereditary?  environmental?  In the end, the cause wasn't as important to me as finding the treatment and a way out of this darkest of places.
    Things that helped.
A couple of incredible friends.  The kind of friends that were willing to take that three a.m. call and love me and not judge me. For me, verbalizing what I was feeling (to a few trusted people) seemed to be my first step to recovery.  I needed help.  I had to get past my own ego to ask for it, but it was worth. 

Flowers.  Strange?  For me, taking care of my potted flowers, watching them grow and sometimes filling my kitchen island with fresh cut flowers gave me some peace in the middle of turmoil.  There was something about  a flower and it's blossoms and color that reminded me of growth and happiness and possibilities. 

Exercise.  Despite my complete mental exhaustion, I still forced myself to try and do something physical a couple of times a week.  Even if it was just walking around the block.  There are thousands of studies linking exercise with depression recovery.  For me, it was a vital link.

Crying.  After fighting and repressing my tears for weeks at a time, I finally let them go, in a Niagara Falls kind of way.  And it wasn't pretty, and I didn't care. Crying releases chemicals in the body that cause depression. Apparently I had  a lot of chemicals that needed to be purged.  I cried every day (for a couple of weeks) and although some people may think this was a bad thing, for me it wasn't.  I needed to cry and process and be sad for awhile before I could move forward. 

Music.  Somedays it was to help me cry it out, and somedays to give me hope. Eventually it developed into a playlist that echoes the title of this post, "hope floats".

Counseling. Two different counselors who approached depression from two different kinds of treatment. And just a heads up… when choosing a counselor, it's kind of like shopping for insurance agents.  There are some really good ones and some really bad ones.  Sorting through my feelings that were causing the depression was another important step for me to recover.

My faith.  After hours on my knees, I woke up one morning and decided I was done being sad. Even though my life plan seemed to have taken a major detour, I decided it was still my life plan.  The plan my Father in Heaven had given me because He  knew I could live it and that I needed to live it to become who He wants me to become.   

     As I type this post, I have been free from depression for several months.  My purpose in sharing this experience is simply this, to share hope.  Hope for myself if I'm ever in that dark place again.  Hope for others who may be there right now.  The concept of hope has incredibly endless possibilities for good.  I believe it's something our Heavenly Father has instilled in each one of us.  So if you find yourself in that dark place today, hold on.  Even if it's just with your fingernails on the edge of that cliff.  Hold on.  Things will get better. Circumstances will change.  Life will keep moving you along if you let it.  Just hold on.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

a couple of things

1. It's one o'clock and I'm still in my workout clothes.

2. Having a puppy is a life (style) altering experience.

3.  It's raining, but just enough to make it humid and gross.

4. I have twenty-seven loads of laundry to do today (slight exaggeration, slight).

5.  Left behind dirty socks.

6.  I sometimes wish I was in my twenties again.

7.  My children will only do their jobs when I remind them.

8. Yesterday my third child turned fifteen (happy).

9.  Science projects in certain part of my fridge.

10.  Tomorrow will be a Wednesday I've never seen before.  Here's to this unseen Wednesday.

Monday, September 8, 2014

the bane of my existence gives a rude wake up call

How was your Monday?  Ours started out with this perfect thunder storm around 2:00 am this morning. The very best kind relief from this relentless September heat.  And as I  burrowed down in our comforter and listened to the rain I thought, "rainstorms are one of my very favorite things."  At 3:00 am this blissful sleep was interrupted by one of my most unfavorite things as Gregg flipped on the light and said, "I think a scorpion just stung me."  It had, and luckily Gregg found the foul creature and smashed it before it made it's cowardly get away. Gratefully, it wasn't as venomous as some, and Gregg's sting was manageable.  And happily, when we woke up (again) three hours later, it was still raining.  By 8:00 am it had rained over three inches which is a new state record for AZ.  And the best thing for Gentry?  They actually cancelled her school. In all my mom years, that's never happened. We are desert dwellers after all.
  Wishing you your own kind of happiness today, whatever that may be. 

Sunday, September 7, 2014

sunday inspiration

I've been thinking a lot about this talk lately by David Bednar. I think the whole "spiritual traction" analogy is kind of brilliant.  

Happy Sunday. 

Thursday, September 4, 2014


 It's a not so comfortable 102 degrees here in AZ today, and I'm just sitting here eating chocolate chips (the only sugar I could find in the house), and thinking about life. This past Monday, when most people were enjoying the labor day holiday, I was thinking back to a labor day twenty years ago.  A labor day when I was actually in labor with our oldest child, Sadie Lauren. And I swear, two minutes after Sadie was born, the look in her blue eyes said something like this,  "Well hello world, here I am!  Let's go!" And that's how she's lived her life so far.  All twenty years.  

A few weeks ago, Sadie mentioned that she's considering going back to BYU in the summer, six weeks after returning from her mission.  And all of the sudden it hit me all over again, she is never really coming home.  At least not to stay.  And yes, I know that's the way it's supposed to be, and yes, that's the way that I want it because it's right, and healthy, and good.   But,  it still hurts sometimes.

Thank you Amy (a church member from Texas)  for the pic and the love!
In the book, "Tuesdays with Morrie",  Morrie Schwartz ( a man battling als) talks about being a parent,
"Whenever people ask me about having children or not having children, I never tell them what to do,   I simple say, there is no experience like having children. That's all.  There is no substitute for it.  …If you want the experience of having complete responsibility for another human being, and to learn how to love an bond in the the deepest way, then you should have children."

If you've never read this book, do. It's wisdom and love is a beautiful package. And I think Morrie just nailed the whole parent thing. 

Happy Birthday to my Sadie Lauren.  Love in the deepest way.