I never could have imagined the experiences, challenges and rewards that come along with the title and responsibility of being "Mom". Everyday my little ones present different needs to be met, new attitudes to understand, stages to conquer, and find new ways to unravel my patience. Despite the challenges, the rewards that come from a genuine I love you mom, a moment of 3 children happily playing together, and even a simple accomplishment bring feelings and emotions that words can't describe. I am ever so grateful for my Precious Little Ones; for their individuality, talents, and the completeness each one contributes to the Cox Clan.

December 17, 2008

Inspired by my brilliant Mom, this year we are going to try and do small and simple things every day that bring the true spirit of Christmas into our home. Hopefully the little acts of service and kindness will be fun, contagious and ultimately keep our thoughts centered on Christ this Christmas season. Here are a few examples of what we’ve experienced so far…
Sharing the “Service Star”: One day Madelyn gathered all the laundry from the bedrooms and took it to the laundry room. Then she left the star there for me to see it was now my turn to share the service star. Another day, Madelyn made Mason’s bed, leaving the star on his pillow. Mason then made Jalen’s bed and left the star. Then together all three of them made Alan and my bed and left the star for us. They were so happy and excited to do something nice for each other. It’s amazing how such a small act of kindness brings so much happiness. It really is contagious!
Madelyn chose to share the special “I Love You” candy bar with her teacher, Mrs. Needham because she truly adores and loves her first grade teacher. We appreciate all the hard work and fabulous job Mrs. Needham does.
While driving around admiring the many beautiful Christmas Lights, we decided to take a special treat to a house in our neighborhood whose lights we thought were the best. After all finally agreeing on one, we all got out of the car to deliver the surprise and tell our neighbors how much we appreciate their hard work and enjoy the lights on their home. We did have a funny experience with this one. After knocking, a man came, opened the door and then left the door half open but went back upstairs. We thought maybe he was just going up to put on a shirt so we waited. But no one came back down. We waited a little longer and of course the kids were talking and asking what is he doing and what should we do with the popcorn. I knew that whoever had opened the door could hear us. Finally I decided we should just close the door and leave because obviously he wasn’t coming back down. Just as we were loading up in the car, the man opened the door. He apologized and was quite embarrassed because he had thought that we were his wife and kids coming home and that his wife had forgotten her keys so she was knocking on the door for him to let them in! So he simply opened the door for them, not realizing we weren’t his family! We explained to him what we were doing and he was so appreciative. More importantly, the kids were thrilled and thought this was so much fun.

December 16, 2008

Poor Jalen

Sunday night I sent Alan with the kids to finish delivering some Christmas presents. After only a few minutes, Madelyn and Mason came running home crying and upset, letting me know that Jalen got bit by our neighbors dog. I didn't get to0 excited, because the kids can be a little dramatic. Then Alan came walking in holding Jalen and very calmly said, "Yes, Jalen got bit and he's going to need a couple stitches." I still wasn't too alarmed until Jalen looked up at me and I saw two gaping holes from the bottom of his upper lip to his nose. It was more than just a little cut! He looked like he had a cleft lip and it barely missed going all the way through. That's when I panicked. I just couldn't believe this had happened. With very crapy health insurance and not knowing where we could even take Jalen and get somewhat coverage, I was upset. Not only was it Sunday, the fact that we were trying to do a good deed by taking a gift to our neighbors, but also we had just come home from tithing settlements! Sometimes don't you feel like despite trying to do everything right, things can still go very wrong? Four hours, 10 stitches later and a dose of humility, changed my perspective. After getting Jalen home and in bed, all night I thought of the many other things that could happen that would be so much worse. Jalen was going to be fine. At least it was a small dog and the cut wasn't any worse; at least we have good doctors and antibiotics that can fix the problem; it's a blessing the dog was immunized and our neighbors are so concerned about Jalen too. I guess I've learned that we are just never in the clear...life is going to continually throw challenges and all we can do is make the best of them. Most important is that Jalen really is just fine. And as for the dog, well Jalen thinks he needs soap in his mouth!

December 3, 2008

Thanksgiving Traditions

I seem to always run behind in posting updates and events for our family, but late is better than never, right?! Here are some of our traditions and highlights from Thanksgiving.

One of Alan's favorite traditions is the pie at Thanksgiving dinner. His mom makes at least 30 or more pies. Not only is there enough for 3 or 4 pieces the night of Thanksgiving, but also, it is a tradition to eat pie for breakfast the day after. Grandma Joyce makes 3 or 4 of every kind: apple, pumpkin, banana cream, chocolate cream, lemon, pecan, mince meat, and cherry. Joyce is a great cook and always makes sure that no one goes hungry at her house!

Below are some pictures of where the pies are stored before the feast...yes even on top of her car!

Here is a table set up in the garage with pie only.

Here are some shells ready for filling when needed on top of a fridge.

Thanks Grandma Joyce for the fun tradition and of course, yummy yummy pie!

Here are all the cute grandkids at Thanksgiving dinner.

Another fun tradition is watching the light parade down main streen of Manti the night after Thanksgiving. We all bundle up and watch for the highlight: Santa Claus riding on a fire truck. Of course, it's the favorite for all the little ones.

Madelyn loves having her fun cousins to do girlie things with.

Alan was so excited to take Mason on a 4-wheeler ride and find some snow in the mountains. He really misses the outdoor activities that we don't get to do much living in Arizona. So any chance he gets while visiting Utah, he takes...even if that means subzero temperatures!