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.

April 20, 2009


I have always loved the Springtime and the events that take place...moving activities to and enjoying the outdoors, softball season, Memorial Day weekend, and the excitment and events that come with the end of a school year. Since moving to Phoenix, spring has become my favorite time of year. The weather is so beautiful and if you know me, you know I love Sunshine!! This time of year is great for us because it attracts and encourages our family to come and visit and we love that! We have had lots of fun with our visitors the past month and we want to tell them Thank You and Come Back Soon!!

I got one of the coolest surprises of my life one Friday night. Alan and I had just sat down on the couch to relax after a very busy day. I heard a knock at the door...Alan went to answer it and then yelled, "Jennie, it's one of your friends." So I get up and walk to the door and there at my front door is Jake and Natalie both with cameras capturing my surprised expression!

As I think back, there were plenty of hints that visitors were on there way that I should have clued in on....

Clue #1 Jake called to talk with Alan, but not much chit chat for me

Clue #2 That Friday afternoon as Alan and I drove home from the temple, Alan states, "Our house is a mess! We've got to clean when we get home!" Since when does Alan really care? Besides, our kids had been gone all day and the only thing that was really a mess was the fact that I started painting the boys room, so everything for their room was out in the family room.

Clue #3 After t-ball, Alan starts picking up, vacuuming and moving the mattresses from the family room onto the deck. Even though he hadn't eaten since breakfast, he skipped dinner to clean. This should have been a huge clue

Clue #4 Friday evening, Alan went outside to take a phone call on his cell

Clue #5 After the phone call, Madelyn comes inside and asks, "what does 10 minutes to cotton mean?" I looked at Alan and said, "If someone was planning to come and visit you WOULD tell me, right?" His response, "of course but noone is coming to visit." Yes, this should've not only been a clue, but a dead giveaway!

We all enjoyed a spring training baseball game, especially the warm sunshine. Jake and Nat especially because they had left snow in Cedar City and came to 90 degrees and sunny!

Jake and Natalie were so good to entertain and play with the kids. They played cards, took them on walks and to the park. They are so much fun and some of coolest people we know! Thanks for coming...you can surprise us anytime!

The Squire family was our next visitors who came a couple weeks later over Easter weekend. Alan's sister Annette her husband Ralph and their cute four kids, Tyler, Amie, Nate and Russell. Our kids were so excited to have some of their Cox cousins come to visit! They asked for days, how many more days until the Squire's are coming??

The first day, we hiked the Waterfall Trail at the White Tank Mountains. The kids all loved hiking in the outdoors, looking for rattlesnakes and lizards. They especially loved the ponds of water at the end and like all boys do, they had to throw a couple of rocks in!

The second day, we all woke up to drizzling rain and disappointed kids...the big Easter Egg Hunt at the Surprise Stadium was on the agenda. To our surprise, after loading everyone up and arriving at the stadium, the big egg hunt was canceled due to a little rain! The kids were so sad, and what made it worse was them knowing all their cousins in Utah still participated in the traditional egg hunt despite Snow!! But we made up for it with our own Easter egg hunt and the kids had just as much fun!

At the end of the treasure hunt, the discovered eggs were being tallied up, making sure they were all found. When the numbers came back and we knew one was missing, Uncle Ralph informed the kids that one had fallen into a deep hole. All the kids took a turn reaching their arms way down into this hole but all came up empty handed. However, Mason was determined to find it and sure enough, after several attempts, he came up with the last egg! He was thrilled!!

Of course, a highlight for Easter is decorating and coloring the eggs...

We also took the kids to Cabela's, a favorite for our kids!

We love our family and are so grateful when they come to visit! Hopefully they all know they are welcome anytime!!

Easter Sunday...what beautiful children!

April 1, 2009


When I was a little girl, I loved playing "house". My sisters and I had the whole set up, a real playhouse in the backyard with furniture, kitchen set, dolls and all the accessories. We spent hours and hours pretending to be moms: taking care of our babies, talking on the phone, fixing dinner (usually with water, mud and weeds), and writing out checks (when we were really lucky with old check blanks!) I couldn't wait to be a mom and get to do all these things for real. Now that I am mom of 3 and living that life I always dreamed of doing, it sometimes doesn't always fit what I had imagined it to be. To understand where I am coming from, you'll have to read the following email. I came across it while cleaning out my email account. It was an email I sent to my brothers over a year ago while they were in Iraq.

"Jake and Trav, you're always wondering what we've been up to and what's going on at our house. So here is an example of how my day went yesterday:

3:00am--Mason wet the bed, so we had to strip him and his sheets, started laundry, got him settled back down and back into my bed by 3:30.

4:00--Jalen wakes up to come into bed with me too. He never sleeps all night in his bed and once he's in bed with me, he hogs my side of the bed and I get very little sleep. Alan is in San Diego right now, so at least all three of us did fit in my bed.

6:00--Kids all up and ready for breakfast. (I will be glad when they are old enough that early mornings without much sleep during the night, they can pour their own bowls of cereal and watch cartoons! Unfortunately we're not at that point yet!)

8:30--Off to pick up two other kindergarteners and take them all to school

9:00--Back home, fighting with Mason, trying to get him excited for preschool

9:15--School bus honking for Mason, but I can't find him. He had hidden under his bed. I get him on the bus only by saying that I will promise to pick him up afterwards and he won't have to ride the bus

9:20--Get a call from the school nurse, stating Madelyn is there and says her tummy really hurts; so I hurry to go back to the school and pick her up.

9:30-Get 5 other little boys at my house for play group while their moms go run errands and do shopping. Find out that Madelyn's "tummy hurts" because she had to change her card from green to yellow at school yesterday and she is upset and nervous about going back. But she decides she wants to go to school and my friend takes her back to school.

11:55--Play group should be over so that I can hurry and pick up Mason from school but I got two phone calls from moms stating that they were running late.

12:00-- Load up Jalen and two extras to pick up Mason--but first have to change a poopy diaper on one of the boys whose Mom should have been there.

12:15--Trying to maintain 4 little boys in a very hectic, crowded preschool parking lot and school. Not an ideal situation. Yes I did look like the crazy mom without any parental control

12:45--One Mom says she has to take her husband to the ER--so wanting me to keep her son for awhile.

1:30-- I walk by the bathroom and see poop all over the toilet. My friends little boy had gone potty about 20-30 min. before, so I knew that he probably did not wipe very good. I go get him to see if he needs some help and find he had an accident in his underwear, had it all down his legs and it was now dry and very stinky and very very messy to clean up. (Hope I haven't grossed you out...but boys this is what motherhood is all about!)

2:00--Jalen not feeling good, has a fever and just wants me to hold and rock him

3:30--Get the boys in the car to go and pick up Madelyn and the other two that I carpool with at school. We have to park about 1 block away and then walk because the traffic getting in and out of the school parking lot is herendous. Keep in mind I have 3 little boys and now 3 kindergarteners during this walk

3:45--Get a phone call from my friend who is with her husband at the ER and needs me to keep her daughter who I just picked up from school at my house until they get home.

4:45--Trying to help kids with their homework (remind me why kindergartners should have homework every night?? We didn't and we turned out just fine, right?!), start dinner, talking on my cell with Kera as I get many interruptions on my home phone. One of which was the missionaries saying that they need a place to eat dinner in 30 minutes. SO for the next half hour I made probably 10-15 phone calls trying to find someone that was home, whose husband could be home, didn't have plans, and could provide a dinner that had no MSG in it (one of the Elders is allergic to MSG which is a preservative and found in SO much food). Finally I told the Elders that I wasn't having any luck. They finally decided that they could stay home and have something there. (Duh! Hello! I can't believe they didn't think of that in the first place! I know my brothers would never be like those clueless Elders!!)

6:00-My friend came to get her kids---and the rest of the evening was pretty normal bedtime routine stuff. But by this time of the day, something as simple as brushing the boys teeth was a huge endevor and required patience, of which I didn't have anymore!!! Today I am at work and although it was a rush to get everyone out the door by 7:15, I can say that my day has been much more relaxing and less stressful. This is why I work...for that 1 day a week that my sanity returns!"

Although this was not a typical day and did have a little more drama than usual...these days do happen. One thing for sure, these kinds of days were never part of my pretend world of motherhood!