Friday, March 27, 2009

Happiness.... It's a choice

There has been some interest in my mini-talk on Happiness. I was asked to give a little 3 - 5 minute talk in Relief Society on Thursday about finding Happiness as a New Mom. I believe that what I said and about to transfer onto here can apply to all walks of life, to all people no matter what their circumstance:

Happiness is a word that means different things to different people. What makes me happy may not necessarily make others happy. I also believe that there are different levels of happiness at different times in our lives. That said, I truly believe that we all have the right and the ability to be happy no matter what is going on in our lives.

For those of you who frequent this blog you'll know that I love Mary Ellen Edmunds. I get jealous when Susy Ferreira tells me of their meetings and friendship. Mary Ellen Edmunds writes great books! I started reading her You Can Never Get Enough Of What You Don't Need: The Quest For Contentment and LOVED it!!! One of the things I always think about when I read that book is how lucky I am to live in America and actually enjoy the stuff I don't need (i.e a second pair of shoes, a t.v, her book). So when I was struggling last year with all the stuff that was happening in my life I went to another of her books its called Happiness:Finders Keepers. Now honestly, I haven't gotten through it, I keep getting distracted by other books but I have scanned it from time to time and there are two quotes I would like to share.
The first is this: “Since our Father in Heavens plan is “the great plan of happiness” and since one of the reasons for our very existence is that we “might have joy” it’s clear that we’re meant to be happy right now, here today!” It might strike some as odd for someone who has grown up in the gospel to not realize that the plan of happiness was meant to make us happy but I guess I had always assumed it meant future happiness. Like if I got through all the steps of the plan of salvation THEN I would be happy. Guess what, the Lord wants me to be happy now! I would say I'm in the middle of the plan of happiness, there are alot of things I should be doing that I don't (go to the temple more, read scriptures daily etc) but the things that we are doing (serving in our callings, teaching Kira to pray, etc) are enough to bring us happiness if we let them.
How does this apply to motherhood/fatherhood? I'll get there... but first one more quote from Mary Ellen Edmunds.
“It seems that to be happy still - to have happiness that will last forever - we must choose it here and now. We must seek, pursue, find and cherish happiness. It seems we can’t be entirely unacquainted with happiness and expect to have it fall upon us someday. Now is the time to discover it, to nurture and treasure it, to enjoy it, to become happy.” When I read this, it struck me that most of the time happiness is a choice. Sure, things happen that contribute to our happiness either positively or negatively but overall how we choose to react to a situation is just that, our choice.
My happiness used to come from doing well in school and going the best I can at work. Now my happiness comes from bring a good wife and mother. Being a good wife and mother means different things to everyone, just as happiness is different for everyone. For some it means working so you can provide for your children, for some it is staying home with them (which by the way is a VERY hard job too!), for others it is a mixture of both. Whatever your situation is be happy in it because it's whats best for you. Some days I don't want to get down on the groud with Kira and play but I do... and I do because I know that when I get back up I'll be happy. Happy that I did, happy that I got that kiss I didn't have to ask for...

There will be some nay-sayers... well I can't be happy because of this and this or that but to them I say this: Life will NEVER be 100% of what you want it to be... there will ALWAYS be something to work on... your weight, your job, your spirituality, whatever it is but those are not reasons to put off your happiness.
Finally I want to end with this quote. I don't know where I found it but it has helped me so much, especially on hard days when things are tough...

We convince ourselves that life will be better after we get married, have a baby, then another.
Then we’re frustrated that the kids aren’t old enough and we’ll be more content when they are. After that, we’re frustrated that we have teenagers to deal with. We’ll certainly be happy when they’re out of that stage.

We tell ourselves that our life will be complete when our spouse gets his or her act together, when we get a nicer car, are about to go on a nice vacation, when we retire.

The truth is, there is no better time to be happy than right now. If not now, when”

One of my favorite quotes come from Alfred D. Souza. He said, “For a long time it had seemed to be that life was about to begin - real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business time still to be served, or a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.”

Happiness is the way. So, treasure every moment that you have and treasure it more because you shared it with someone special, special enough to spend your time with… and remember that time waits for no one.
So, stop waiting until you finish school, until you go back to school, until you lose ten pounds, until you gain ten pounds, until you have kids, until your kids leave the house, until you start work, until you retire, until you get married, until Friday night, until Sunday morning, until you get a new car or home, until your car or something else is paid off, until spring, until summer, until fall, until winter, until you’re off welfare, until the first or fifteenth, until your song comes on, or until you die to decide that there is not better time that right now to be happy.

Happiness is a journey, not a destination.

I know that all of us have the opportunity and are entitled to be happy now. I have seen and known what it is like to wait for happiness to come. We may not have everything we want right now but we are blessed with everything we need.


This may be too simple for some but in the end... Happiness is a choice. Our lives are supossed to be filled with trials that's why we were put on this earth. I believe this to be true.

Flashback Friday

In 1991 I got to go to Seattle with my grandma to visit my aunt and uncle. We had such a fun time! I got my hair permed and some new outfits to wear!


Friday, March 13, 2009

If your happy and you know it....

Turn the music off down at the bottom of the page first!

videoExcuse the mess (it get's cleaned up at night) and my voice... but I had to share...
After we taped this, Kira watched it over and over again and sang with herself which was fun too!
Hope you enjoy this as much as I do!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A little update

So my camera has pretty much gone ka-pute!(How do you spell that?) Anyway, I don't feel so bad about it because we got it for a good price and we took our fair share of pictures with it...(Jacob took it to a car show or two so we have gotten our money's worth right there). So I think this will be the last update for a while until we can get outselves a new one or Jacob pulls his monster of a camera out(he usually carrys it with him so I don't always have access to it)

Anyway - I am amazed at how time changes things. Kira is almost 19 months old and in the last 2 weeks or so has picked up on so many fun things!
She says Uh-oh (which I love) and always is sure to point out a dog on the tv(has anyone ever noticed how many dogs there are on tv?). When you tell her that you love her she usually sends you a little kiss with her hands.
She has FINALLY started to point out her nose(she always knew where it was but liked to tease us) and my favorite is that she learned how to say HOORAY in Nursery...you know "If your happy and you know it shout Hooray"
She loves to play with her babies, she hugs them, pats their backs and play pat-a-cake with them...
Being is mom is seriously the hardest thing I have ever done. Some days it seems unbearable but then I have good days and sometimes even good weeks with Kira and I remember how blessed I really am to be given this responsibility. It's an awesome and I pray everyday that I can be the mom that Kira needs me to be. I just hope that I am... Anyway.

So here are some pictures of her the last couple of weeks.


She loves her daddy!

Eatting Cherrios with her fork... don't believe me?

See... I told you!

This is how I pulled her out of the crip the other morning... Still not sure how she managed to pull her arm out of her jammies.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Flashback Friday

For those of you who know me well... I Heart Del Taco. When I moved to California 11 years ago and Taco Bell disappointed me one too many times I switched my loyalty for American Fast Mexican type food to Del Taco. I have many good memories associated with Del Taco.. like going through the drive thru at 11:30pm ('cause the resturant part is closed that late) or so and eatting "Big Fat Chicken Tacos" with Annette at the one on Imperial and La Mirada Blvd. Or hitting that same Del Taco with Korie late at night too when she orders her Macho Nachos and I munch on some fries! We would just sit and talk about all kinds of things but those are the memories that make me smile!
Or stopping at the one on Rosecrans and Euclid in Fullerton on the way to Jacob's while we were dating at eating chicken soft tacos on the way to his house for a night of movie watching.
A more recent Del Taco memory is when Jacob, Kira and I drove up to Las Vegas last year we stopped at a Del Taco (I think it's on Sahara)for lunch before his interview. We had a good time just talking and imagining what life would be like for us up here and Kira was snaking on the tortilla... He got the job (obviously!)and now he calls it "Our Del Taco" which is touching because he's really not very sentimental about things.
Del Taco was also the place(The one on Imperial and Rose in Placentia) that Jacob and I first went to lunch together when he got back from his mission. (I bought because he wasn't working)
Del Taco might be a weird topic for a Flashback Friday but I just wanted to share with Annette, Korie and the rest of the world that I have loved it for a long long time!


by the way... that's me... not Kira... I know it's hard to tell but look at the cup and the couch and you can tell :)
(p.s. when I scanned this picture... I even called it "Tennille loves Del Taco!")