Baker's Partial Dozen

Baker's Partial Dozen

Monday, October 28, 2013

Tender Mercies

I apologize for not blogging in quite some time. To be honest, our household has not been in the best of spirits and I find it hard to blog because all I want to do is complain. I will do my best to update without being too negative. Don't get me wrong, we do have good days, but the monotony from day to day tends to get us down. I'm going to share some personal information because this blog serves as my journal, so if you don't want to know the personal details of our lives, don't read. Haha!

I've been very up and down the last few months. I was released from my calling as Primary pianist and was put in as Relief Society 1st counselor at church. I've been in RS callings in the singles wards multiple times and was excited for this change. I now realize the emotional tole this calling can have dealing with a family ward. We deal with so many things that I never had to deal with before, both positive and negative. I feel the blessings of serving others and definitely feel a much stronger tie to the women in my ward. I have such incredible support and feel the love that these women and the Savior have for me.

At the end of August and beginning of September I had some crazy things going on with my body and decided I needed to call my doctor. After talking for some time with the nurse, the conclusion that was made was that I had a miscarriage. I had no idea I was pregnant, but looking back on the 2 previous months, it made sense. You would think that the fact I didn't know I was pregnant would make this conclusion easier, but with messed up hormones and other stress factors in my life, I really didn't deal very well with it. I've been overly emotional over just about everything and of coarse, tend to eat my emotions, so my health has not been so great lately. My emotions seem to be evening out now, so I think my hormones are starting to balance again and I can get back to being normal.

Scott is still without a job. This stretch has been a bit brutal for us, but I'm reminded often of how blessed we are at the same time. I think the hardest part is that the unemployment thing really toys with a person's self-worth in a society where all that seems to matter is money and status. That being said, I have been beyond grateful that Scott has been able to have a lot of quality time with Jayna and we have been able to get by for 5 months now and can still last for a few more without needing to ask for help. If you ask how this has been possible, I would have to tell you that I honestly don't know. You could call it a blessing for setting aside our tithing, you could call it frugal living, or you could call it just plain ol' luck. I've been able to pick up a few extra students and decided to return to BSU to accompany very part time to try to help make ends meet.

So we come to this last week. For the last couple of weeks, Scott has been saying that he feels like change is around the corner (I sure hope so). I've become a complete sceptic and have truly lost a lot of faith. I've been trying really hard to not lose faith, because I realize that the fact we've made it this long is only because of Divine intervention. This last week truly showed me that my Heavenly Father is aware of us, and though we've not received help in the form of Scott getting a job, we've been truly blessed. Four things happened this last week that were a huge 2x4 to my head, showing me that Heavenly Father cares:

  1. I had 3 students audition for solos for a combined Boise School District performance. All three of those students got the solos they auditioned for and there was only one other female solo slot left. Not only did this make me beam with gratitude that I have a great job and a talent to do what I love, but I have actually received 3 phone calls for people interested in lessons because they were impressed with my students. Tender mercy #1.
  2. On Monday, I was asked to help judge Nebraska All-State Choir auditions. I was informed that the base pay would be $70 for 40 students and $2/student after that. The money didn't sound great, but I'm grateful for any opportunity to make money at this point. When I was assigned my region, I realized that the money I would make would cover about half of what we needed beyond my regular income for Novembers bills. However, I figured that was less money we'd have to pull out of our diminishing savings account. I got to work and finished my region a day before the deadline and decided to send out an email to the other judges offering to help if anybody was behind. When all was said and done, I had the exact amount of auditions needed to cover the rest of our bills. I then got a phone call from the person in charge telling me how grateful she was that she was inspired to call me because I was their "saving grace" in this project. Little did she know was that her inspiration was our saving grace. Tender mercy #2.
  3. Like I said, I've been quite stressed about our diminishing savings account. A) because we still don't have a job and B) because we have a broken down car, some health and dental problems that need some desperate attention, and a number of other things we'd like to take care of that we were saving that money up for in the first place. Well, because Scott and I are both stubborn and dare I say "prideful" individuals that don't like to ask for help, we had not signed on for unemployment. Much of what was holding us back was the fact that the company that fired Scott tended to be a bit difficult to deal with, so we naturally assumed they'd be difficult with this process, as well. Anywho, Scott finally broke down and applied and as it turns out, the company had been paying into his unemployment all along. The amount of backpay that we are told we'll be paid? You guessed it. The exact amount that we've had to take out of our savings over this period of unemployment. I cried long and hard with gratitude. Tender mercy #3.
  4. I shared my gratitude for "tender mercy #2" in RS today as a testimony that Heavenly Father is watching over us and made it clear that I was not asking for sympathy in any way. A woman who was just visiting our ward came up to me afterwards and gave me a big hug and told me that she felt for me and had been in a similar situation when she was younger. We shared some tears and then she slipped some money into my hand and I told her I couldn't take it because I really am financially fine right now, but she insisted. When I got out to my car, I discovered that it was a substantial donation. I've been fighting back tears of gratitude all day. My goal is to hold on to that money and to give it to somebody else who truly needs it when we get back on our feet. There are some truly amazing, giving, and lovely people out there! Tender mercy #4.
As you can see, this week has made me feel truly blessed and watched over. My stress level has decreased immensely, though I still hope and pray that Scott can find a job for his own sanity's sake. I feel as though I owe a great deal to the universe and to others in need to help pay back some of the tender mercy that we've been shown.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Jayna's 1 yrs Pics and Random Pics

We'll start off with random pics from the last little bit that make me happy :).

We often find Jayna in random corners reading books... Love it!

Her face and hair are priceless in this one

14 months

Finally enough hair for a "ponytail"... We've since bought ponytail holders.

Favorite pastime? Jumping on her bed... tsk, tsk, tsk.

She's daddy's girl... Loves her cheerios.

Always wanting to see herself on mommy's phone... 

My awesome friend, Rebecca Peterson, got some adorable 1 yr photos of Jayna. Here are some of my favorites!

She also took some pictures at our family reunion that turned out nicely.

Jayna's B-day Party Catch-up

So, I'm a terrible person and haven't blogged in a really long time! This entry is basically going to be a bunch of pics of Jayna's 1st b-day party. To preface what may look like child abuse in these pictures, I have to say that I bawled my eyes out that day because Jayna got the worst bruise ever and I felt horrible. I know that once children learn to move around, they want to explore as much as possible, but I didn't realize she was to the point that she could climb up on things. In fact, while I was writing my blog post about her turning one and how great it was to be her mom, she was climbing up on top of her toy box (I thought she was just standing next to it playing with her toys) and lost her grip and landed, head-first, on the hard floor. I felt terrible!!! Needless to say, she was not in the best mood for her b-day party. That, and I made the bad decision to wake her up for her own party... Never again! The guests can wait. Haha!

I did try to be a little crafty and made some cute little cupcake thingys... They were actually a lot of work!

 Here was her little birthday seat

Haha! This picture made my day!

Uncle Nick trying to convince her that chocolate really is tasty...

Grandpa Baker with cousin Clara

Yup... We had fun... See the nasty bruise?!

This picture sums up the party. Haha!

Pretty blue eyes! She did eat some ice cream, but wouldn't touch the cake.

With Aunt Allison and cousins Ethan, Hunter, and Haylee

We were so glad that our local family was able to make it, even if she was grumpy :).

Oh, the Dancing

So I'm pretty sure Jayna gets her dancing ability and crazy energy from her father. This is an earlier video of her dancing... She now enjoys getting up on her hands and feet, looking between her legs, and shaking her head like Stevie Wonder. Haha!

Our Favorite Activity

I love that daddy and Jayna have such a great time together. My favorite part is that she can't quite turn around as fast as she wants to... It's like those dreams where you're being chased and suddenly you lose all traction and can't run anywhere.