Friday, April 17, 2015


( Topher, Mom, Lucy, Page, Matt, Stevie, Jesse, Andrew, Courtney, Me)

Today is my Mom's 70th birthday.  
I have been thinking about why I love my mom and what she has taught me.  
When I remember living at home in my early life and teenage years, 
the image I have of my mother is of her moving.  
She's cleaning the kitchen, weeding the garden, emptying the dishwasher, 
doing laundry (and she's calling me "Stephy"), wiping down counters,
doing her bills, folding endless piles of clothes, and probably making pancakes.
But while she is doing these things she is also talking to me and listening too!
Growing up, my mom was constant. 
 I always knew I could count on her
to be home when I got home from wherever I was at 
most any hour of the day.
She sent me off to school,
greeted me when I got home from school,
saw me to bed,
and was there when I woke up.
I am eternally grateful
for the sacrifices she made for me (and my family) to give
us such a beautiful and safe childhood, and just generally
always being there. 

I love you mom.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

A safe home.

Lottie has been skipping out of naps lately.
Actually, I should I say; I haven't been putting her down for formal naps.  
Some day's she needs a nap to keep her functioning,
 and other days she doesn't.
Yesterday late afternoon, Lottie wandered into the mud room where 
I was washing and folding laundry.
She sat down with her "minkie" (blanket), and watched me work.
She was quiet and calm, and soon she lay her little orange head down on minkie.
I turned around to grab another load of clean dry clothes out of the dryer 
and looked over and she was fast asleep in dreamland
(In her princess dress).
I like to think that children who can fall asleep anywhere at anytime
must feel absolutely and safe.
My goal as a mother is be sure my home is a safe place for my children to be.
I want our home to a place where other children who visit feel
safe and happy too.
Mr. Nielson and I are very picky about what comes into our home.
We monitor what our children listen to, watch and do.
We encourage less activities, distractions, and programs
that will take our children away from our home.
We want our home to be a place of love, kindness, service, and acceptance
for all who enter.  Our home is a reflection of our love and honor for God.
I try and keep it clean, in order, comfortable and colorful.
It requires hard work, especially for me, but its important to me,
so I do all I can to make it happen.
A favorite quote I refer to often:

"A home is made of love, sacrifice, and respect. 
A house can be a home, and a home can be a heaven when it shelters a family.
 When true values and basic virtues undergird the families of society, 
hope will conquer despair, and faith will triumph over doubt". -Thomas S. Monson
Speaking of creating safe places, my friend Design Mom, (Gabby)
 has created and published a gorgeous book called "Design Mom Book".
With photos of beautiful family spaces and ideas, this book
is really for everyone who desires to create fun darling,
functional, stylish and practical family rooms. 

Also, check out pg. 252-53, my darling friend Katy Dill's
gorgeous rainbow home is featured.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


I trimmed my basil plant today with Lottie's help.  
She helped me pick the delicate leaves off and put them in little baggies.
Her orange hair with the gorgeous green leaves
made me think how thankful I am to be around 
for these everyday simple normal events.  Nothing big, nothing to shout about, 
nothing really to even report, but these moments 
are what makes motherhood so rewarding for me. 
Speaking of Mother's Day, Check out The Vintage Pearl for beautiful mother's day
ideas for the wonderful mothers/women in your life.
 Use Code "nielove20" for 20% off your purchase.

*Also Lottie's cute dress here
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