Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sweet and Sour with Cabbage Dumplings



Seven times before breakfast
I thought to myself, Today is a day where I am going to go sit on mom's couch all day and not move.

Then I remembered how impossible that would be because she isn't home.

And really, she won't be home for the next three years.

Which wasn't so sad as it was today when I kept looking at Ever thinking, "We should go walk up and see my mom so she can smooch Ever's face."

Then me: remember? She isn't there.

Lumpy throat.

And because I've been putting cabbage on my chest intermittently for the last twenty four hours, Chup thought I needed an evening drive. So we drove by my parent's house and he held my hand. He even said,

"I am sad too."

This post might be short because I can't see the monitor on my laptop.

Me right now: blurry, teary eyes.

My parents are actually not two minutes away right now at a place called the MTC. It stands for the Missionary Training Center. You go to the MTC for a couple weeks or months before you head out as a Mormon missionary. Because my dad is going to be a Mission President, my parents will be in the MTC for only five days. Then they will fly out to St. Louis Missouri to live for the next three years where they will help the 180 missionaries in that mission.

Miss. Ouri.

Miss.

See when you are Mormon (are you?) you aren't paid to do these things, you are called. And when you are called you go. You do. It is hard, you miss your family (we can go out and visit!) but you are blessed. And that is why you do it.

When you are a missionary, you are called by the prophet--President Monson and you are "set apart" meaning that you have a special purpose. So on Wednesday my family--half of them anyway--went to Salt Lake City to our church HQ. There, in a beautiful room my parents were set apart by one of the twelve apostles--Robert D. Hales. He was incredibly loving towards our family. I told Chup he was exactly what I believe is Christ-like. I wanted him to stay with us all day. And when he asked if we had any questions, I wanted to ask him so many questions I started to get dizzy. Then I turned to Chup and said, "Should I ask him if we can take a family photo with him?"

But I didn't, and Chup said,

"It was meant to be."

Before he left, he told us our mother was the barometer of the family. If the family is well, our mother will be happy. Conversely, if someone in the family isn't well, our mother cannot be either. It's the nature of mothers.

"If you want to help your mother, be good," he advised.

Then Ever started fussing and I nursed her in that beautiful room.

When that was over my family started to leave the room and gather in the foyer. Then surprisingly we found ourselves being invited to meet the prophet. The prophet. Our prophet. We spent well over a half hour in his office talking to him. Actually, he talked to us--telling us stories about growing up with our Grandma Marion Larsen at Vivian Park and how he fell in love with his wife Francis. And he let us look in his desk:



It was surreal. Because if you are Mormon (are you?) you know how much we adore our prophet. We sing a hymn that about him: We thank thee O God for a prophet, to guide us in these latter days. He is a prophet of God and the leader of our church.

(You can read more about him here.)

Ever was still a little fussy, so I didn't stay in the office as long as everyone else. I went out in the foyer to bounce her around. My mom followed me out. Because see? Elder Hales was so right.

Me: I miss my mom so much already. Did I mention?

Then we watched my parents get in their car and leave--a la the bride and groom off to honeymoon--to the MTC where they will be for awhile before Miss. Ouri. Which sorta brings me full circle.

And I just barely--whist writing this posty--had to remind myself again how I can't go up to my mom's house tomorrow to show her how funny it is to have cabbage leaves on my chest. Or how over the last twenty four hours The Chief only melted down twice(!) and Ever started to turn over and I rubbed off all the dark nail polish she didn't like on my nails and Chup fixed his vintage scooter and would she like a ride around the block?

Instead I'll just be good and go to bed.

My mom always worries I stay up too late.









I am c jane and if my internet friends can help me cure mastitis with cabbage leaves can they also make three years go by really fast?

contact me:
cjanemail@gmail.com

209 comments:

1 – 200 of 209   Newer›   Newest»
Melanie Gao said...

Yes, we can! Look at that, a week just went by. Your mom will be back before you know it.

Sue said...

Saying good-bye to missionaries is always bittersweet for me. Always.

Having said that, your parents are going to be absolutely stellar in that calling! What's more, they will have the time of their lives...and miss every one of you like crazy.

=)

madsta said...

Dearest Cjane,
I feel for you, I'm not mormon, but I love when you write about your religion, I love hearing about how you completely trust that it will guide you and all, its very beautiful; I'll do my best, but three years is a long time, I hope your not too sad, we love our cjane :)xxx

Brooke said...

CJane! What an amazing experience to meet President Monson. So cool. Thanks for sharing. I will pray for a speedy three years for you...and for a full recovery from mastitis:) Love from Las Vegas!

Mrs.Dr.Shot said...

The years will zoom. Rooma zoom zoom. Really. We'll do what we can to help, promise.
You know you get to be the barometer now, right?
Thanks for sharing your time with the Prophet. I'm pretty stoic,but the picture made me a little weepy.

Laura said...

(like madsta, I'm not) but what a wonderful adventure for your parents! And all you kids will look after each other - that's how well you have been brought up.

Jules said...

Cjane I am feeling your pain. I am getting ready to send my son off on a mission soon. I keep telling myself that he WILL be back after two years. 'Keep your chin up' as we British say.

kate amelia said...

OH! I know how you feel,(minus the cabbage leaves!) MY Mum and Dad will be home being Mission President & Wife in Perth, Australia in only 6 days. It's the best feeling in the world thinking about having them back again. It'll go quicker than you think - plus, the blessings that come to the family of missionaries are like...endless! Get ready ;)

Gina said...

No. Not Mormon. But enjoy the insight you give me to a religion I otherwise don't come across in my life here.
I have been there with the cabbage leaves. I was told it HAD to be a particular variety of cabbage but cannot recall which , sorry. Looking forward to being a part of helping the coming weeks and months fly by....

Mom4ever said...

I think Mission President is much better than Mayor! :o)

Naomi Miles said...

My twin sister lives in Provo (I'm in England) and on average I get to see her every 2 years. It sucks, it's like living through mission after mission after mission! The sad thing is, I think it will be a 3 year gap this time before we see each other again.

But one thing I can tell you is that it gets a little easier. You'll always miss your loved ones but you won't cry EVERY time you think of them... just a few!

Audra said...

I cried reading that.

I love what your parents are doing. I am from St. Louis and Mormon. I live in Phx, but visit family in St. Louis often. I am thankful for people like your Mom and Dad. They are needed and it is wonderful that they are willing to serve. At the same time, I feel your loss too (I am tearing up again). I would miss my mom too. Take care.

Prayers and hugs.

growingapair said...

Though I am not LDS, I worked at BYU once upon a time-- and I grew up in St. Louis.

On top of being a really worthy mission, it is a really fantastic place for you to visit your parents-- free amazing zoo, really neat history, and a huge metal horseshoe to boot.

It will be okay, and it will fly by. In the meantime, I have some LDS friends in the 'Lou who will be very happy to meet your parents!

Marie said...

I can't believe you got to meet President Monson! And go in his office....wow. I made my husband come look at the picture :) What an awesome experience.

Candice said...

Oh Cjane! I know exactly how you feel. My parents went on a mission shortly after I graduated from high school and it was really hard for me.
Hang in there. It always helps to know you can go see them and call them, right? :)

Ashley said...

Wow, so neat to meet the prophet - so up close and personal like that! We are moving to the St Louis mission next month and maybe someday I'll get to meet your parents at a stake conference or something! That'd be my "mormon celebrity" moment :)

Good luck with the cabbage. I've had mastitis three times - ugh. Try to rest as much as possible. I found that after I started feeling better I would try to do too much and then my body wouldn't been able to fight the infection. So, rest up!

Kara and Chant said...

Oh I cried when I read this post. I am living in St. Louis right now while my husband attends chiropractic school. My family is in Idaho. I can relate! I wish all the time my mother could be here to see all the things my 3 small children are doing. We haven't seen our family since August! But Thursday we are going home! Good luck during these next three years. The visits will be that much sweeter.

Amie said...

Oh Courtney, I completely feel you. My mom and my sisters are my life blood! I lived in Boston (born and raised in Cleveland, OH) for a number of years for a wonderful job I loved. But I moved home because i missed them too much. At least you still have your sisters and the rest of your amazing family for love and support!

And don't wish the time by too fast! In three years your parents may be home, but your children will also be 6 and 3! (right?) Your Little Man will be starting kindergarten! Holy Moly! Take a day at at a time and kiss those beautiful babies every chance you get.

((hugs)) from Ohio.

Missy said...

Courtney, my parents were missionaries (Baptist, sorry) for seven years on THE.OTHER.SIDE.OF.THE.OCEAN. I feel your pain, honey. Prayers will go up for you. Prayer that you will be happy so your momma can mission with a lighter heart.

M said...

That is just so many shades of SO cool I can't even begin to comment on it.

Oh wait. I did.

SO cool! You got to meet the Prophet! And see his desk! And hear his stories! Am mildly jealous.

But not really because you are also cool.

Susan said...

Your parents are doing a great thing. However, many faiths have missionaries that are not paid and are called. And their work is great as well. I have a friend currently serving our Savior in Africa. I'm thankful for email and the computer as it keeps you closer than before this wonderful technology.

Lisa said...

Mastitis- Hot showers (at least what you can comfortably stand) nurse...nurse Ever..& breast machine! Massage the lump....warm compress over the lump....nurse....nurse..nurse Ever.
Sincerely,
Nurse Lisa
& Breastfeeder of 4

Jordan said...

What a great experience for your whole family to gather at the desk of the prophet.

I love the title of this post, Courtney.

Sarah said...

Cabbage leaves resolve mastitis because they help to dry up your milk. If drying up is your intention don't worry, but if it's not then you might want to try something else.

N. Tipps said...

I had mastitis 8 times with my son. I still nursed. I never used cabbage leaves though. I became expert of feeling it come on and then I was able to fight it off. My problem was pumping and nursing. It had to be one or the other with me and never at the same time. I never really did that. I'm sorry you have it though. It is the worst. I know!

I will miss your parents too. I thought a few times this is why your dad wasn't elected mayor. Steve and Cindy Clark are awesome! They raised a great family and I love to read of your unity and closeness to each other.

mymoons said...

Oh, Cjane, I feel your pain. Three years ago, my own parents moved to St. Louis. I felt sad, as you do, that they'd be so far away and we couldn't see them whenever we wanted and that my children wouldn't get to know them as well as they would if they stayed close. However, I'm happy to report that St. Louis is a FANTASTIC vacation spot (who woulda guessed?!) -- so so much to do with little kids! You'll be amazed!

Also, it creates an interesting dynamic because, when we visit, we visit for a week (or more) at a time -- 24 hours a day together is so much fun! My people LOVE to visit and, as a matter of fact, we are packing up for our drive there this Sunday. St. Louis, here we come!

So, be brave. Be strong. Time will fly. In the meantime ... plan a trip to "Miss. Ouri." You'll love it!

appledapple said...

Cabbage leaves can relieve the pain of mastitis but it won't cure it. You need to get the milk duct unplugged. I have some very good tips if your interested you can email me. I don't want to bother you with useless information if you don't need it XOXO
kathrynscheib@gmail.com
3 years will go by quickly, especially with the chief and ever to keep you happily busy! You will be surprised at how strong you grow~

NorahS said...

Wow! Thomas S. Monson on cjane! I must admit I exclaimed out loud (right here in the office! hehe) when I saw that. That is pretty cool! Three years will go by fast. Especially with a trip or two to Missouri thrown in for good measure. Good luck with the cabbage.

freckleonthenose said...

It's amazing - no matter how old we get, we never stop needing our moms. I miss my mom right now and she's five miles away.

The interwebz are so fantastic though - you can Skype, IM, etc. when you're not traveling to visit your folks in Miss. Ouri.

Laura said...

How weird is it that I cried, but only out of one eye while reading this post!! Hang in there.

David & Natalie said...

am i? yes, i am. and this was cool.

Sylvia said...

I missed my parents every day they were gone and cried harder than I've ever cried before.

Twenty years later, I've grown up and have children of my own. I live 1500 miles away and I've stopped crying every day but I still miss them. Coping skills are wonderful things. Thanks for posting about it.

And wow! LUCKY...the prophet?!?!! Wow!

Emily said...

What an AMAZING experience to be able to meet our prophet... like you said - we just ADORE him!

My heart hurts for you when you talk about how much you already miss your parents. But I have to tell you something - I live in St. Louis (in the neighboring ward that your parents will be in), and we are SO excited for them to get here! We feed the missionaries almost every week, and I just have to tell you they are the most amazing young men I've ever met! Seriously - your mom and dad are going to have an incredible time here! St. Louis is amazing, and the members of the church here are the most generous and kind-hearted people ever! Know that they will be taken care of, and that they are being sent to an amazing area!

Erin said...

I am so happy for you and your family. It's so great to read that although you will miss your mom and dad you know they are serving the Lord. What a great post. I showed my son the picture of your nieces and nephews in President Monson's office and he thought it was so cool, so did I.

I know how you feel about cabbage leaves. I had to do that before and it is not so pretty.

Thanks for another great post!

Ashley and Ben Dilsaver said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jillian said...

Oh sweet girl, you will miss your mom...and she will you! I live in St. Louis and would love to bring my 3 over to your mother for smooches on the cheek. I hope you get to visit, it is beautiful and there are millions of family friendly free things to do. (I so see them living in University City or the Central West End.) Also, the temple in St. Louis is beautiful and your only a couple of hours from Nauvoo, Illinois...Joseph Smiths homestead. My prayers are with you and your family. Absence truly does make the heart grow fonder!

Katie Rich said...

Good luck President and Sister Clark! I have a brother on a mission in India and I can only hope that his new mission president coming next will will be the kind of loving, caring people your parents are.

Starving Student Survivor said...

What a cool experience to meet President Monson! And what an adventure for your parents! I'm guessing it will be a great experience for your entire family.

Ream O Rama said...

I hope that you find the 3 years pass quickly, your family has a safe journey and with little sadness....but aren't Skype and email wonderful?

peace-

bbbunch said...

Two things:

1. Mastitis: Had it twice, antibiotics and nurse like crazy! It hurts, but it will be worth it.

2. Your Mom: I am so sorry. I am not in your religion, and I do believe that for you this is an honor, so I would now like to put that aside for a second and just talk about YOU. The human side of you that is sad and hurting. I am SO sorry! When I was 24, my parents starting leaving 6 months in the winter to go down south where it is warm. I was never able to visit them. It bothered me, but once I started having kids, it REALLY bothered me. I had my son in July, and they left in October (ditto for my next child...July/October). When they returned in April, my then 9 month old was scared of them and wouldn't even go to them. It broke my heart. My 3rd child was born in August, and they returned when she was 9 months (2 summers ago). I saw my Mom once when they first got home before she unexpectedly passed away. My 4th baby is now 9 months and what I wouldn't give to share one moment of her holding him :(

The point of it is this: Do not wish the 3 years away. Your babies will be 3 and 6 then! Skype, e-mail, write, send them packets of pictures and drawings in the mail, visit! VISIT AS OFTEN AS YOU CAN! Don't let money/time/inconvenience be an excuse to not visit as often as you can. I know I wish I would have/could have. Call her for advice, recipes, memories, anything. I don't care how old we get, I don't think you ever get too old to want your Mom!

My thoughts are with you :) Good luck to your parents on their journey!

Jillayne said...

Your parents will have so much fun! That was awesome you all got to meet president Monson.

On another note: Cabbage leaves work really well. Also try a warm poultice/mask made of fenugreek. Just steep it in hot water until it cools significantly and then mush with blender or what not.

You'll smell like maple syrup, but slather it on the really sore spots and it will help the milk exit easier and the clogs will come out smoother. (I used a pump on the "bad" side to get the clogs out so I knew when they came out.)

marymary said...

i want to thank you for the peek into those beautiful offices and of that sweet sweet prophet! i just love this Gospel!

Salmon Tolman Family said...

Oh my gosh! That's incredible that you got to be in the prophet's office!!! You are one lucky girl to have so much loving family! I live hours from my mom, and so I kinda know that feeling you feel. Thank goodness your sisters and siblings surround you! You can make it (cabbage or no cabbage)!!!

Sarah Jane said...

Oh, I'm teary just reading it.

Jessi said...

You made me all teary-eyed. Best wishes to you and to your parents.

Rachel said...

Here's some advice: Don't wish for it to go by too fast because then you'll want it back. All those sweet Chief toddler and baby Ever moments can't be asked for back. Before you know it The Chief is 5 and in school and Ever is three and your mom and dad will be home asking how in the world they got so big. Trust me life will fly by and [hopefully] you will have added another sweet babe to the mix:)

jeanine said...

I hope these 3 years fly by for you! (and that you are able to go out and visit!)

Oh. And try Traditional Medicinals Mother's Milk Tea. I drink it right after I have a baby (for a few weeks) and it helps so much. Maybe it will help your mastitis too.

Nancy said...

I can empathize! I too have missed my parents while they were on their mission, and I've had mastitis - but not at the same time. It's got to be rough. I wish I could relate to the President Monson part - so lucky! Hang in there girl!

Sarah said...

I'm also sorry to see you sad. I know I would miss my mother terribly-- did for the two years that she lived 13 hours away.
I do have a silly question (not being Mormon, I don't know the answer). If a person is called to service, and they are not paid for their service, then how do they pay their bills during that time? And if only individuals who are capable of meeting those obligations during their service are called, don't you miss out on a lot of people who would do absolutely wonderful service within the church?

Jennifer said...

Aw, keep your chin up. I know it's hard to be away from family, but St. Louis is a great place to visit. When you come here, check out the City Museum (great for kids & adults), take in a baseball game, go to Grant's Farm, go up in the Arch, eat at fantastic restaurants, and do some shopping.

Sarah said...

Another note-- I lived in St. Louis for eight years, and now only live 100 miles away. It's a wonderful city, filled with over 300 years of history and culture. I hope they get the chance to explore everything. Tell them to go to Crown Candy for lunch and ice cream!

Kaylyn said...

Cjane, I understand completely. My parents are mission presidents in Argentina and they have been gone one year now. I miss them every day but it really has gone by quickly and it has greatly blessed our family!

Lauren said...

I think that making the time go faster is one of the blessings that comes when you are supporting a missionary. Remember - the Lord knows how to care for us in ALL our difficulties - including the ones that come from being righteous! As for distance - you would not believe what a difference skype will make. Being able to see your loved oned while you talk to them is so much better than just a phone call. It helped us so much while my husband was deployed. Finally, think how much more you will all appreciate living close to each other when they come back! My family is in Canada, and I married an American military guy, so we have been far away. I am just hoping to get within driving distance! (Which I now consider anything less than 10 hours)

Untypically Jia said...

That is so awesome of your parents to be serving a mission. I really wanted to serve a mission, but I had this whole . . . husband thing. I hope we'll serve when we retire.

Also, I am so jealous you met the prophet. Like, wicked jealous!

Dana at StrawberryTart! said...

No bigs words of wisdom here...just wanted to send you a big HUG!

Krista said...

Thank you so much to you and your family for sacrifing these next three years so that hopefully many more people can have the joy of the gospel in their lives. It is a great gift. I know and I know you know the Lord will bless you immensely for it. Love you guys.

Christine said...

Wow, the Prophet!! I'm so excited for your family. What an amazing opportunity for your parents! I know you'll all be so blessed for it. :)

Butternutsage said...

Terribly sad day for you but beautiful pictures! Go often to Missouri!

cami said...

My parents are on a mission too, on the other side. They have both died in the past year (heart attack and cancer)...in their young 50's. I have 6 kids, half of them won't remember their wonderful Grandparents.

Enjoy that you get to visit them, and that they are coming home. What I wouldn't give for a road trip to heaven :)

Michelle said...

Okay, I am STILL crying! Your post brought back a lot of emotions for me-- My parents served a two year mission in the Philippines. I was just shy of my 22nd birthday when they left and in the process of falling in love with my favorite boy ever. We got engaged and were married while my parents were away. My remember a sweet letter from my Mother that said, "I have hoped and prayed for this day all your life. I never dreamed I would be half way around the world when it happened, but I know we are both doing what is right" It feels so strange-- sharing your parents when you are sure you need them so and they need you-- and the time my immediate brothers and sisters (9 children) had "without" our parents was an exceptional growing experience. It brought growth and happiness we could not have imagined--as well as some heartache. So let those tears come when they will, and let the blessings come too. Before you can imagine it you will be counting down the hours when they will arrive home --and the growth you've all had will be something to celebrate:)

PS pictures and emails and phone calls are marvelous things :)

Angie said...

My parents are serving in the San Pablo Philippines mission as Mission President. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Mine are on their last year and I still miss them terribly! But Like you I am trying to be good. Thanks for putting my feelings in writing. The tears actually felt good.

{Erica} said...

Oh how I can relate! When my parents were called to Tahiti I felt like the church was taking away my parents at a time when I needed them most. I was a newly wed and now where would I do my grocery shopping if not in their four fridges?!! How dare they!

Seriously though it was so very difficult. She wasn't there for the birth of my 2 children, for huge decisions, hard times and happy times.

But I do have to say that the blessings my little family recieved because they were serving were recognized. Nothing big and grand but things that I know wouldn't have happened if they weren't serving.

We were able to recieve a blessing (each of the siblngs) from Elder PAcker and also met Pres. Hinckely. It helped me feel better about my parents leaving. I was proud of them...just didn't want to share them.

I also realized that it was a super rad perk to be able to visit Tahiti every 6 months for 3 years!!!

p.s. hope the cabbage helps. It didn't really help me. This too shall pass...right?

tyKa said...

I thought cabbage made your milk dry up? Maybe that's what you're trying to do? Antibiotics cure mastitis. You probably already know that.

Lindsey said...

What an awesome experience. I would love to hear more about the mastitis cure. Does it work? I had mastitis 4 times and I'd love to try something other than antibiotics if I get it again.

Our Little Corner said...

When my parents announced out of the blue that they were going on a mission, it was a bit of a blow. I'm the oldest of 5 and my youngest sibling had just turned 19. There were only two of us married. The next couple of months brought two more weddings and lots of prayers (by me) that they would just please, please, please go somewhere safe and somewhere close and somewhere that I could call and visit as much as I wanted.
Then they got called to Armenia. Yes, Ar-othersideoftheplanet-menia.
This was another blow. Prayer works, but I think the Lord knew that they didn't need us bugging them every day. (Heck, we could barely bug them once a month) They didn't always have phone service. I think they were cold and couldn't find normal food. We couldn't talk very often and visiting was out of the question.
But we dealt with it. The five of us huddled and formed our new little team. When mom and dad came back we were more grateful for them, but also grateful for the little dose of Grown Up Juice that we'd all been forced to swallow.
I know your folks will be gone twice as long, but it will fly. And St. Louis is wonderful to visit. The temple is gorgeous, the zoo is in fact wonderful and free, the arch is amazing. It's also very close to Nauvoo.
Chin up!

Michelle N Lurvey said...

Cjane- What an amazing experience for you and your family. One thing that got me through my mission was to remember that the days are going to be long, the weeks short and months will fly by. My the Lord will bless you and your family.

Jennifer said...

At least when your parents go you can go visit them, not like when you go when you're young. And they'll have each other!

Karen Anne said...

Courtney,
I can actually say without a doubt: I know how you feel!
My parents (and two precious teenage brothers) have been living in Eastern Europe as missionaries for nearly 4 years.
I am very close to my mother, she is my dearest friend, so having her so far away has been so difficult.
One of the commenters used the word "bittersweet" and it is a perfect description of what family members feel when saying farewell to missionaries. While I support and love the work they've been called to, my heart aches from the separation.
They stayed with me for a week this month, and after they left I went into the guest room and laid on my parents' bed and cried.
I miss them so awfully, terribly, immensely.
I don't know if or when they will move back to the states. I trust that God's plan will be revealed to them through His Spirit in the course of time, and I look forward to the day we can be together again--whether that be in this life or the next.
I am so thankful that God is actively calling His people to proclaim His name among the nations!
Thank you for posting. I'll be praying for your parents.
Isaiah 52:7
"How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace,
who bring good tidings,
who proclaim salvation,
who say to Zion,'Your God reigns!'"

Lauren F. said...

Us (we?) St. Louisians are excited to have him. Heck, I don't even live here anymore but I am getting my parents excited that your parents are going to be here. We will be nice to them, I promise.

Emilie and Branden said...

Omigosh. I dropped me parents off at the MTC two Monday's ago...then my baby brother 2 days after that...haven't stopped crying. It's like someone died over here!! Want to go do some MTC drive-by's? We can stalk our families like psycho girlfriends :)

Don and Kelley said...

Love this post. What a blessing to meet the Prophet!!! My son's met him at a scouting event. He is amazing! My son will be serving a mission in a year. It will be hard to say good-bye, but knowing there are wonderful mission presidents out there with him brings me comfort!!! Hang in there. I also love what Elder Hales said to you guys about mothers. So inspired!

Karen Anne said...

P.S. It is SO awesome and encouraging to read the comments of all these families who have loved ones serving as missionaries in foreign/far away places!
Bless you all and your families!

Doty Family said...

Oh, what a sweet post! Mom's are the best. What an amazing experience to get to meet President Monson. Just goes to prove you have such an amazing family! He was probably awestuck getting to meet the Clarks!

Nicole Braden said...

I love President Monson! What a special day!!!!!

kelly said...

wow so jealous of meeting pres. monson and looking in his desk! how fun!
st. louis is a really great place. born and raised there until 8 yrs. ago. go visit, great place for kids. just don't go in august or winter!
i am sure it is tough with them going especially when your kids are so young and moms are so helpful but everyone will be blessed!

Krista Hansen said...

I had mastitis with my first baby 3 times. SO painful! Get some antibiotics quickly. Be careful with cabbage leaves because they can dry your milk right up. Don't take fish oil supplements while nursing. They do all sorts of clogging. I've taken a daily dose of lecithin capsules with this baby and have not had mastitis once (in a whole year). Hot showers, nursing and pumping can help. Good luck!

Taylor K said...

I am not Mormon, but I still miss my family. They are in CA and I am in silly hot Arizona. Boo!

Darla said...

This is my favorite post ever! What a wonderful experience for your family. My parents just got home from their mission two weeks ago. While they were gone, I was amazed and how the spirit was with me and helped me not miss them so much. I've never felt like that before. I got along far better than I ever though I would...except for the day I tried to make homemade dinner rolls and had to call her 12 times!

The Boob Nazi said...

I couldn't do it without my mother, but I'd probably also enjoy it.

Crystal said...

How neat for your family! Missouri is beautiful! Your parents will love it there.

This is off topic but I read this and thought of your feminism post a while back. Thought you might be interested in reading it. It is an opinion article written by Kathleen Parker of the Washington Post.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/22/AR2010062203211.html


Have a great day!

Seymour Chase said...

my brother is serving his mission in st. louis. so, many many thanks to you and your family for the sacrifices. it means my brother gets your parents' awesome guidance, examples, and love for the rest of his mission.

Jennifer said...

Wow -- you must have a brutal case of mastitis for it to appear prominently in the same post as meeting the prophet! (What a choice experience.) I hope you recover soon.

You will undoubtedly miss your mother, but what a blessing for having had her close by all these years.

Maybe, as another Jennifer commented, you should clarify that family visits are a privilege of mission presidents, not something for all missionaries?

Nell said...

nope, not mormon. not at all religious actually and quite happy about that but enjoy hearing about your sweet family. i think that's the beauty of life really - that we can be so different and have such opposite perspectives on so many things and still enjoy eachother.

Malia said...

My in-laws are also in the MTC preparing for their call to be mission president and wife in the Marshall Islands. We will miss them, too. We spent Tuesday at church headquarters where they were set apart by Elder Cook. We did NOT get to meet the prophet. I am so jealous...but we did get to see Elder Bednar and President Uchtdorf (who, I am pleased to report, is just as handsome in real life).

Cherie said...

What an incredible experience! To meet with the prophet... something most of us only dream of! I have tears in my eyes!

We lived in Missouri for a small bit of time (we called it Misery - lol) and Missouri will ALWAYS have a special place in my heart. It is a very special place!

Cindy O said...

Bittersweet is exactly the right word to describe this time, I think. I have a son serving in Missouri right now - not St. Louis, but the other side - Independence! He's been gone for almost a year, and we miss him fiercely, but are grateful for the opportunity to serve as well.

Thank goodness for all those (Mormon and not) who serve the Lord when He calls - we know His message needs to go out to the whole world.

Good luck with the mastitis and your "miss ouri" at the moment - may they both be of short duration.

Thanks for sharing your world with us, cjane.

Mary said...

You met the Prophet?!!!! Holy snap. You guys are like Mormon Royalty. Move over Osmond Family. ;)

I hope the next three years go quickly for you.

Teri said...

Why thank you for asking, but yes, I am Mormon, too.

KK said...

Actually, I think you have Ever for that. :)

Emily said...

Thank you for sharing! What an amazing experience!

I am so excited for your parents mission. Following hour blog and being introduced to your family through it I know that because they did a great job with your family they will do a wonderful job with those 180 missionaries.

My father and brother also served in that area. So that is cool!

Laurie M. said...

(I am!)
What an amazing experience to be in that office with the Prophet! I am so sorry your parents will be far away from you. I know it will go fast. Stay close to your siblings and rely on them!

Erin said...

I had mastitis with all my four children. I got better at preventing it: DO NOT sleep on your side or stomach. DO NOT wear a restricting bra. If you feel a duct getting blocked up PUMP and MASSAGE and PUMP and PUMP. Good luck. I've been enjoying your blog for a few months, and yes, I'm mormon.

jules said...

Outstanding! I wish Stephanie could have been there. C jane you will do just fine. Having been there and done that you will grow even closer to your siblings if that is possible. I would also say you just got 180 new siblings because your parent's will love them like their own. You might not visit much, the reality is they probably won't have much time for you. You were a missionary, the mission President and his wife will have a grueling schedule.

You will carry on though and like everyone else has said what blessings email and Skype are.

I am so happy you had an experience you will cherish a lifetime.

Paige said...

AMAZING! Thanks for sharing. Your parents are incredible.

Katie said...

Elder Hales was our visiting authority at our General Conference last year. It was AMAZING!! I couldn't pry my eyes or my heart away.

At least you can go visit them in Missouri! I'm sure your internet friends will do the best they can to help your next 3 years pass quickly.

xoxo

pollydove said...

Oh my ... that will be really hard for you because it is clear how much you adore your mom and dad. But on the up side - time really does fly by WAY too fast, so you'll see them before you know it, with Ever's hair in pigtails and maybe another little one on the WAY!!! (It could happen.)

I loved how you wrote this post ... so sweet! And what a wonderful memory for your family.

Erika said...

I know all too well how you feel right now. My parents just hit the 2 year mark in Romania and will be home in one more! It does go fast. It stinks to have them gone (or miss the birth of your first child!) but the blessings far out way that! You can do it. And those mission presidents are from a whole other breed...yours must be amazing!

Good luck.

Abbi said...

try fresh pineapple for the mastis... only fresh will do ;) those missionaries are really lucky to have a wonderful mission president and wife. i love my mission pres!!

Robert and Sherry Leal said...

I loved this post. I needed to hear a lot of the things you said...about missions, about the prophet, about mothers, and about barometers. I, like you, am the barometer in a family with a two-year old boy and a baby. Lately I've been feeling like the whole weather station. Thanks.

Damaris said...

best post ever. ever.

Briana said...

What a neat experience getting to meet President Monson! Thanks for sharing with all of us! :)

This was a sweet post - I hope the three years goes by at just the right pace! :)

Veronica C. said...

What a beautiful family! I felt like I was there with you, missing my mom. I miss my mom but she's in Cali.

Wendi said...

I am too! :) And how neat that you were able to meet Elder Hales and President Monson in person. Those missionaries in Missouri are lucky to have your parents to serve them. I hope the time literally flies by while they're away. And I hope you get to go visit a lot. I also hope your mastitis goes away quickly. That is seriously no fun.

The Jones said...

cjane, I have never met a prophet before...what a beautiful experience for all of your family. My parents are getting ready to go on a mission as well, Im not sure I can bear to see them go. Be strong, and know how amazing this will be for them...you all will be blessed immensely! Love you CJane! :)

Nancy said...

I live in Miss ouri...it's very nice here...I actually live in St Louis...it's very warm here now...and july and august will be even hotter...

The redhead said...

That would be so surreal to be in the prophet's office . . . talking to him, and looking in his desk no less. What dos he keep in there? Tic Tacs? Chocolate? Sentimental notes? I just think of the awe I feel seeing him enter The Marriott Center or the Conference Center, so actually meeting him would leave me dumbstruck, which is pretty hard to do.

Hope the evil Mastitis clears up soon. I've only had clogged ducts before and that was enough to make me cry. The only thing that worked was using a pump to get
out ALL the milk that baby didn't finish. Self-expressing is too hard-core for me.

Leslie Jam said...

Court you are such a good example to me! You and your whole family (along with 180 missionaries) will be blessed by your parent's service. What a great experience for them to have!

Leslie James

miss you :)

Ashley said...

that picture makes me want to cry.

Stephanie said...

I know how it can be, my grandparents have been on numerous missions and it doesn't get any easier, but knowing they were called specifically for this it is some comfort. but You can call and talk, their rules are a little different than that of the young missionaries.
Also I have friends serving in st Louis, they will take care of them or something like that.

Jenny said...

Hi,
I'm not Mormon, but I grew up in STL. Your parents MUST try Imo's Pizza. It's a STL tradition, as is Ted Drewes Frozen Custard. I'll be praying for their safety and for you as well. http://www.imospizza.com/
http://www.teddrewes.com/Drewes.asp

Jessie said...

As soon as I saw the picture of all of you and your parents I started crying. My parents are also on a mission. They have been gone for 6 months and I still cry at random times when I remember I can't call them or go over and visit. It's so hard to have them gone and I'm hoping that the sadness lessens with time. I hope it will for you too

Moddy said...

My parents just returned home from their 4th mission in Russia (well 2 of their missions have been to Russia, one to Cambodia and one to Scotland). It is hard, but it's doable. Skype totally got me through their last 2 missions. While it was really really hard the blessings that have come to my family (there are 10 of us kids, and 30 grandkids) are without number. You will miss them, but well you get on with life and then they come home.

momof8 said...

That is sooooo awesome!

Shortcake and Company said...

Oh.my.goodness. I'm glad I'm not the only one whose heart aches when my mom is gone. My mom and stepdad left in April to serve another mission...only 18 months after returning from their first one. And funny thing: they didn't have their papers in. The Church called and asked if they'd serve again (my stepdad is a retired orthopedic surgeon and they need Area Medical Advisors) so of course, they said yes. My heart aches like yours just because I miss her terribly. I am close to my mother, like you are yours. Thank heavens you can visit them and talk to them. They'll do a wonderful job! And that's a great area too. Oh...and hello? What a wonderful experience to meet Elder Hales and Pres. Monson. WOW!! Best of luck to you.
P.S. Has your mastitis passed? I hope so!!

amberbuck said...

Oh, Cjane, I can only imagine what you're going through with your mama being away. I had mastitis with my 3rd lovely and it wasn't so lovely. I swear that what helped me was every time she nursed I would put my hand in a fist and knead the area that hurt the worst the entire time she was latched on..massage masssage no matter how much your toes curl and you want to cry. I think it helps unclog whatever duct is giving you a problem...the antibiotics probably helped some too. good luck!

Jennifer said...

Mastitis, I can't help you with. I had the opposite problemo, not enough milk to fill my chest or babies tummies!

But, St.Louis is where I was born and made so many memories growing up as a child visiting family. Lots to do there. Very humid summers and very icy winters, so go in spring or summer if feasible. Definitely go to the zoo, Grant's Farm, and you must go to a Ted Dru's for a "concrete" ice cream!! yummy.

Carla said...

Yes, I am LDS. (Very cool pic of President Monson, btw.)

If I could wish for three years to fly by quickly--without my kiddos growing three years older--I would. Three years from now, they'll be home and you'll look down at Ever and wonder where the time went (who knows? you might even have another infant by then)! At least you can visit them in MO...it could be worse, they could be half way around the world (although there really is no 'worse' about being on a mission). Oh! And when you do go visit them, stop by the Botanical Gardens and plan to spend the whole day! Amazing!

Pamela said...

What a bitter/sweet week!! That is so neat you were able to meet President Monson! You must be so proud of your parents...what a lovely family. Hopefully you can visit them soon! Hugs~

Sarah said...

thank you for sharing this amazing experience :D

thank you for sharing your parents as they serve.

your family will be blessed in ways you can't imagine.

Marilee said...

Oh, I understand EXACTLY how you feel! My parents were sent to HAITI to be mission presidents 12 years ago! My oldest child was only 6 months old at the time. I had my 2nd child while they were gone. I couldn't go visit cause I was pregnant or nursing pretty much the whole time they were gone and even then I wasn't about to take a baby to HAITI! Anywho, parents serving missions are a sacrifice for everyone and the great news is that though time will go slowly some days and quickly others, the Lord will watch over all of you! You'll be blessed in so many ways and the 3 years away will be soooo worth it.
PS-sitting in a warm shower with warm wash cloths over your mastitis always helped me feel some relief! Good luck!

Allison Johnson said...

My in-laws are in Norway on a mission. They have been gone 6 months. I have finally come to the point where I only really miss them on Sundays when I have time to think about it. They are my in-laws and I cried over it on the beginning. I would be devastated if it was my parents. It is sooo hard to have little ones and not have Grandma around to coo over them like only Grandmas can. I guess we will continue to rely on Skype for the cooing for now...

angela said...

Loved this post, like everyone else. I sooooo agree with all who say nurse nurse nurse through the mastitis. It hurts so much but it will end it.

I grew up near St Louis, and I am certain your whole family will love St Louis (and maybe even, eventually, Miss. Ouri.) Some not-quite-so-famous ideas to put into your head:

1. Butterfly House on Olive Blvd (www.butterflyhouse.org). The entrance fee is ridiculous, but everyone will love the butterflies and your Chief will go BANANAS over all the bug exhibits. There is actually a dome of cockroaches where little kids can crawl in and put their head "inside" with the bugs. Eeeewww - but our kids adore it.

2. Christmas lights at Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville, IL (www.snows.org). This is a Catholic retreat open to all, and the lights at Christmastime (all Christ-centered) are pretty awesome.

3. Italian food on The Hill (St Louis's Italian part of town; www.hill2000.org). We love Lorenzo's, but I've never had bad food anywhere in the vicinity. You will gain a million pounds but love every bite.

4. While Nauvoo (and maybe even Jackson Co, MO, etc) are obvious daytrips for you all, think about heading into Illinois - Giant City and Cache River are two AMAZING state parks:
dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/parks/r5/region5.htm

You can canoe, hike, ride horses, etc amid some of the most gorgeous scenery, especially in the fall. Also, either in St Louis or in Illinois, you should ride the river. My kids LOVE the river taxi:
www.ridesmtd.com/shawneequeen.htm

And as others have mentioned, the free zoo is SPECTACULAR (I have been to San Diego and really do think St Louis is better - and the art museum and other museums in Forest Park are also free and great); Grant's Farm and Six Flags are both fun; Busch Stadium is one of the most family-friendly stadiums in MLB; and a trip up the Arch will make your head and stomach spin. Your parents will love St Louis. You will love visiting them.

The Smith Family said...

I had really bad Mastitis and was actually put in the hospital. I was told the best thing to do was to nurse as much as possible and pump when you werent nursing to totally empty the breast. Good luck!

SewSara said...

Oh wow, what a sweet sweet post! I can't believe you got to meet our dear prophet! What a huge blessing. We just moved back from Missouri and your parents will love it there. I hope three years go quickly and that you can visit your parents soon.

I wish we could hang out (I live in provo!)

Tana said...

The post's title was brilliant! Your parents will be wonderful with all those 19-year-olds!!! They will rock!

And, yes, you're gonna miss them so much. But that just means they are great parents. Be thankful. Be very thankful.

And don't forget to look into the possibility of Thrush. Your breasts could have a yeast infection.

Can't wait to read your next post!

Your fifty-something new bestie. (Did I seriously just type that? Ugh!)

Cami said...

I don't know if you will ever get down to this comment with your life filled to overflowing right now. Anonymous I just wanted you to know that 3 years ago, I sat in that same office and met Elder Hales and watched my parents drive away to the MTC. Next Wednesday, they will be making the trip back from Des Moines, IA and as hard as it might seem to imagine, it seems impossible that they have really been gone for so long. It will pass quickly..and you will feel blessings in your family that are impossible to grasp while they are gone.

Shelly's Space said...

While you were saying your goodbyes (and it was quite the send off meeting with the Prophet)....my son is one of the missionaries anxiously awaiting their arrival in St. Louis. I know he will be in good hands and I appreciate their willingness to leave all of you behind to take care of, nurture and mold our son into becoming a future leader of the church:) We anxiously await our first letter telling all about them!!

Make Do and Mend said...

Wow, what a post. Although no longer a practicing Mormon, I do have a deep love and respect for the gospel. As I was reading I was thinking, "Courtney should totally do a glossary of LDS terminology." It is so hard to try to explain:

Wards, Stakes (not steaks), Callings, Bishops, etc...

And yes, I've had people ask if a Stake Center meant that we were going there to eat steak.

Joanie said...

dear C jane...........
I want so bad to give you a {{{hug}}} and hang out in your beautiful backyard with a glass of ice tea & sit and talk with you!

I enjoy reading about your incredible faith and the path that your parents are taking...how proud you must be of them! You are so blessed to have your parents in your life and so young & vibrant!

I so miss my Dad...he passed away in 2001 and my Mom (82 yrs old), lives with us but unfortunately is so limited with her mobility, so our relationship has come full circle and I now care for her.

Cherish every phone call & every visit with them...it's such a blessing, as you already know, to share your life with yoru parents!

amydear said...

My husband is from St. Louis, we were married there, and I love it. I'm sure you will too when you go and visit. St. Louis is lucky to have your parents for the next three years. I'm sure they'll miss you just as much as you miss them. Your parents seem like incredible people. I hope I run into them next time I'm in St. Louis. When you go, be sure to go to Ted Drewes for frozen custard and Forest Park for the zoo, art museum, and general fun.

Kira =] said...

W.O.W! so awesome and exciting yet so long and sad. I'm like you- very attached to my large, loving, LDS family. I hope it'll help you once Nie and her brood are back home. I bet the biggest topic of conversation at first between your parents & members will be about you and NieNie. lol =]

Cardalls said...

Parents just returned from mission #5....3rd one in Africa...no chance of visiting! Keep your chin up..your family will receive INCREDIBLE blessings while they serve!

sarahjean said...

Amazing. i have no other words for it.
I can just feel the spirit while imagining how you all must have been feeling. WOW.

Angela said...

That is so awesome that you all got to go in and the meet the prophet. I just love the photo you took there and I shared it with my four daughters. Thanks for letting us share in that special moment. c:

Pame said...

I think your mom is beautiful. Gorgeous. She will bless so many along with your dad.
And although your kids will make some days feel endless, I am positive that they will also have you wondering where those 3 years went before you know it.

Jeanne_2008 said...

I don't know if you read through all of these (I tend to think you do), but I breastfed 3 children and never got mastitis and I know its because of the advice from a lactation specialist when I was prego with my first. When you are in the shower, you just rub them and massage them and get out any and every lump. It feels good to get them out and it will keep you healthy. My best friend got it with her first 3 babies (never rubbed and massaged) and with her 4th took this advice and didn't get it. GOOD LUCK and I am so wishing I had met the prophet this week!!!

Smashley said...

Oh, I'm so sad for you :( I am currently an hour and a half from my mom, and I love where I live, but hate being "far" away.

I hope that I someday have kids who want to live a block away from me :)

alabaster cow said...

no i am not mormon. but i understand your hurt. i hope this flies by quickly for you. you have incredible parents!

and i, too, will be investing in cabbage leaves one of these days...

ericka
http://alabastercow.com

Rebecca said...

What a sweet (and bitter/sweet) post. And what a sweet experience for your family. It's amazing that the adults got to meet the prophet and an apostle in one day, but think what the children in that room will remember.

amanda abby said...

That's so ironic- I was just in Palmyra, NY and theformer mission president of the St. Louis Mission- Brother Rand Packer and his adorable wife were the directors of the yfe (like efy) program. I'm sure your parents will love it! maybe not the humidity though...

http://alittlelovelytoday.blogspot.com/

Momtothreebabies said...

Don't worry Courtney.. I live less than an hour from St Louis and we go there all the time.. I can check on your parents for you :)
Thanks for letting us missourians have them for awhile.. ive always wanted to be you and Stephanies sister ( i have dark hair and blue
eyes, see, im a shoo in!) so thanks for letting us missouri people have them for awhile :)
JL
jaelleerica@yahoo.com
www.momtothreebabies.blogspot.com

Nathan & Michelle Watabe said...

I'm already dreading my partens going on a mission, and it's still years away. Love your title, because it is definitely sweet and sour. I'm sure there will be so many amazing blessings attached. And at least there's always SKYPE.

Also, it's nice to know the Lord has a plan for everyone and that's probably why your dad didn't get elected as mayor. Much more important job just around the corner!

Jocelyn said...

This won't be too long because my eyes are blurry too. How blessed will your family be for their sacrifice. I am extremely close to my mother as well and cannot imagine being away from her for 3 years! They want to go on a mission. I told them 1 year. That's it. I call her 6-10 times/day. Have the phone records to prove it. I am so happy for you that you could meet the Prophet. I pray he brought you comfort.

Ashley Smith said...

blogging and skyping. Hopefully that will do.

Price Cream Parlor said...

How fantastic to have this experience to share with your family meeting and talking to our dear prophet!

We sent our wonderful parents to South Africa (SOUTH AFRICA!!!!) for three years as mission presidents. And, I might add, it was hard. Didn't have skype back then...but the blessings came! WOW! The blessings were wonderful and felt by all of us - - we were actually nervous for them to come home. Babies were born, my sista Anna was married, and our dear nephew passed away at 14. But there was peace and comfort!

Don't know you - but feel like I do (doesn't everyone say that?) and I am sure your parents will make the best Mission Presidents! I would love to have your parents as our littles' misison president now!

...you can visit them still - just requires a little more effort than a 2 min walk... :-)

Aubrey said...

What a neat adventure for you parents! I lived in St. Louis for a few years as a teenager and was devastated when my family moved away. I loved it there. They will love it there. The church is really strong there.
I've never had mastitis, but cabbage worked well for me when I was uber-engorged. Keep it in the fridge so it's nice and cold when you put it in your bra. That helps a bunch.

Aubrey said...

Oh and another thought...such a cool thing hang out in President's Monson's own office!! What a treasured experience.

I bet your mom will miss you even more than you miss her...and she's got more people to miss. That's not to negate your tender feelings, I'm just saying that I'm sure the feeling is mutual. Thank goodness for skype!

Keriann Lambert said...

Lots and lots of tears for you right now, good and bad. I loved what Elder Hales said about mothers, it is so true. My mother-n-law was here visiting when I read this and had to read it out loud to her, I love mothers. I had mastitis that ended up turning into an abscess. It was a horrible experience that I pray you don't have to have. Good luck with everything. I know you will all be blessed for your parents service! Thank you for sharing, I just love reading your posts.

Kris said...

The three years will go by very fast and your whole family will be blessed in ways you can't even imagine now. And yeah, I'm Mormon. I had huge reservations, even phobias when my husband was called as Bishop. I thought it would be so hard and I couldn't possibly do it, but the things I thought would be hard weren't. And that's because the Lord blessed me just like he will bless you. My daughter served a mission on Temple Square and the same thing happened then. Hard bits were easy and we could feel the blessings. Hang in there c jane! Think how great it will be to go to St Louis and be adored just cause you are related to the Mission Pres! (They will be sooooo loved!It's how it is!!!) Chin up!

Cheryl said...

My in-laws live in St. Louis, and your parents might be in their ward (previous mission presidents have. It's the Frontenac Ward. Tell them to look for the Knuttis. They're nice.

Also, if it makes you feel any better, my dad did not come to my wedding, as he and my mom were serving as mission presidents in Norway. Life happens, but it is all very good. Everyone will benefit--especially the grandkids. I promise.

Laurie said...

You usually make me laugh, or at least smile. This time you made me cry because, you see, I am a mom and a grandmom, and a mormonmom, and I live hundreds and thousands of miles away from my kids and my grandbabies. And sometimes it just hurts a lot, worse than mastitis (wish I had known about cabbage leaves way back then). But at the same time I was crying I had to laugh and smile because of the wonderful blessing you had of being with most of your family for such a grand experience, and also because I know that the blessings all of you will receive during this time will be so much better than the missing part. Without making any sense it makes perfect sense. Good luck!

Cape Cod Rambling Rose said...

Your family truly is blessed. And you shared wonderful thoughts with us that were shared with you. I love what was sad about your mother being the barometer of the family. Those words will stay with me forever.

picklesticks said...

Don't forget time flies when you are having fun. So make sure the next three years are the funnest yet! . I miss my mum and I only saw her two days ago (and she isn't leaving for 3 years). It's hard, but doable!

Paige said...

Well, I know that getting comments on my blog helps my day go by happier and faster (though I get, like, 5...and you have 153, but still).
Hang in there...with the mission & the mastitis. I'm still adjusting to breastfeeding this time around too. blah.
I missed my Mom when she was on their mission, too.... But it's all worth it.

Trin said...

This post is sooo sweet. I loved it. I never comment, but the begging parentheses (sp??) just made me. I am Mormon and I love that your folks are going to preside over St. Louis!! I love Missouri! I really love your posts cjane, and although I don't know you personally, I love that you share the feelings of your heart with a worldwide audience. Such a neat experience with Elder Hales and President Monson I bet! Sweet. Thanks for sharing!! (And I think its awesome that you guys can go visit your folks whilst they are serving. You should!! Missouri is so beautiful, as is the St. Louis Temple, though I've just been to the grounds once, but it was magnificent!)

FarmHand said...

I am LDS. I love reading your blog and the comments that result. You are a super-hero missionary!

My SIL takes antihistamines when she gets mastitis. I don't know why, but it works for her.

Keep writing-you know time flies!

Meghan said...

(((HUGS)))
I am sorry you miss your mom.
I know I would miss my mommy big time if she were to go on a mission.
It will go fast, I promise.

I think I would've cried had I gotten the opportunity to meet the prophet. WoW!

ForeverRhonda said...

I'm not Mormon, but I moved away from my mom. She just came to visit for my wedding and now I miss her even more. Missing Mom's is no fun.

Erin said...

We will be Oh so happy to have them in Miss Ouri! We have some great missionaries that will surely blossom under their guidance. Also, the mission home can always use new and spicy pillows-- she's good with those, right?

Erin said...

Oh, and after reading the comment about what a perk it was to visit mission president parents in Tahiti every few months, you may want to do a little research and check your expectations before do come for a visit. The experience, although green and beautiful, may be a tad lackluster when compared to a Tahitian getaway.

Caroline of Salsa Pie said...

This post made me cry. I know what it's like to miss family...stay strong and know love travels through those miles. We communicate abroad via Skype with our family. If you haven't already looked into it, check out Skype. It's not the same, but it does help to be able to at least see them while talking to them.

:) Hope you have a nice weekend!

erin said...

Have you tried a warm compress made from a disposable diaper? 1. Get clean diaper 2. Hold clean diaper under running faucet 3. Watch diaper absorb all the water 4. Warm diaper in the microwave for a few seconds (they get hot really fast... be sure to check it) 5. Place warm diaper on sore breast 6. Repeat often (because it feels SO good!) 7. Helpful to do right before feeding baby.. helps relax and let the milk flow.

nora ballantyne harrison said...

cjane, i love you. thank you for this post(y), for the picture of our prophet. it helped me today. again, love you.

Families are Forever said...

Ahh...cabbage leaves are so soothing. My naturopathic doctor recommended rubbing the infected area firmly to release the clot. (Your..er..husband may volunteer to do this for you. Mine did.) Painful, yes. But it works everytime.

Jessie said...

Courtney... I hope it is okay that I call you that, I feel like we have been friends forever. Your post broke my heart today (in a good way). I would miss my mom if my parents left on a mission. Good luck my friend. I am hoping that the next three years pass quickly, and that you can go and visit often.

amyrose said...

What an absolutely amazing experience! And what a sweet mother, to leave to be with you.

Good mothers are the best.

heather said...

Beautiful post. I can feel how much you love your paretns. They will do awesome, but you already know that. ;)
oh, and so cool that you got to go into President Monson's office!
Also, why the cabbage on your chest? I've never heard of that before. I'm having my third at the end of this year and I swear the cabbage thing is new to me. Can you expalin?

Meredith said...

What an amazing picture with President Monson - I made my kids come look so they could see what his office looked like! Would love to see more pics if you have them. Congrats to your parents - what a great opportunity to serve. My heart goes out to you - I know you ALL will miss them so much. Hang in there with the mastitis.

Natalie said...

You are so sweet! I totally feel for you. I don't know what I'd do without my mom being close by. I don't know how my sisters survive being so far away from her (one of whom lives in St. Louis). You're very fortunate to have such valiant parents! My mother is a wonderful woman and my dad is a very good man as well - but he hasn't accepted The Church just yet. We'll get him! :) St. Louis is a wonderful town! We love visiting there. I hope you get to go there sometime soon. It's really very lovely. I wish I were able to go visit my sister sometime in the next 3 years so I could tell her that I want to go meet your parents and tell them how wonderful I think they are because I just love reading about their family. ;)

Natalie said...

OH MY GOSH! AND WOW!!! How INCREDIBLE to get to meet Elder Hales AND THE PROPHET TOO!!! Wow. I wish I lived in Utah sooooo bad!!! Arizona :P pbtht.

bsu fam said...

I cried through this post with you. My oldest is 17 and I want him to go it just makes me cry. I love your blog and I can't wait to hear of their adventures.

Amber said...

You are so lucky to meet our Prophet. You lucky duck-you. I think you and I would be good friends. :)

Noelle said...

I lived in st. louis during my husbands medical school time. they will be so happy to have your amazing parents there.

Niki Carter said...

My favorite part is that your Mom actually came out of the office to be with you. Amazing!!! I cried!

Geo said...

We have some close friends who recently moved to Missouri. They are amazing down-to-earth share-the-gospel kind of people. It's sweet to me knowing your folks will be the ones guiding the missionaries who will help them introduce their friends and neighbors to the happiness of additional light and truth.

You met the Prophet. Sweetness.

Sending you loving thoughts and courage too—

Sammi said...

Courtney, I hope you're not too sad.
Its funny, reading about your religion gets me all confused. I love how you trust in it so much, but I guess I don't really know too much about Mormons, I should really take some time and read up a bit! I'm sure Ever will devour your time, and suddenly your parents will be back and if not, a holiday to Missouri can't be a bad thing? x

Carrie Stuart said...

Such a wonderful post. Someone told me the other day, "A mother is only as happy as her children are." That is SOOO true! I am over the moon lately because things are good...but when one of my kids is going through tough times...ugh! Elder Hales is one of my favorites. Right before the start of the Iraq war, he came and spoke to our Stake in San Diego and his words healed me like nothing else could (as my husband prepared to leave). He knows what we've been through and could speak to our worries and anguish. I am so sorry about you missing your mom. Living over in Japan is a great experience...but I miss my family SO much. Sending you healing *HUGS* from across the ocean!

Pretty Momma said...

Such a sweet post. I can feel the love for your mom. I love my mom in that same way. It was hard when she got cancer and I couldn't go vent or just talk about frivilous things with her. I missed that so much.

About the cabbage leaves -- be careful -- cabbage leaves can dry your milk up! I thought that you were weaning her to formula all through your post because that is what women use when they're trying to dry themselves up. Anyway, if you need some cool relief, there are these little things you can buy to stick on that will give the same effect. Also, nurse super often. And if there is an obvious lump or point of pain, try to gently massage it out. Hot compresses are good. If it gets too bad, get an antibiotic. Mastitis sucks. :(

mrs. dph said...

CJane, get one of Ever's cute little diapers and fill it with really hot water and hold it on the clogged duct. It worked for me when I was miserable with my first baby and I called the Nurse hotline in Orem, UT, in 1995. Bless that hotline nurse.

piekels2 said...

oh please. You met a GUY. Its NOT like you met God or anything.

nancyb said...

What a sweet experience to be able to participate and witness.
While it is bittersweet, I hope that you will find joy as you watch your parents rise to bloom in their new calling. Your family will be stronger and better. My parents and in-laws have done so much for us and yet their greatest influence on our children is because of their missions.

amanda said...

Sorry your mom is gone and that it's hard. And although I really like you and your blog, I feel the need to say this. The one thing all false religions have in common is that they worship man, in your case...the prophet. True Christianity will only worship God and Jesus. Your prophet is a man. A sinner like the rest of us. So for him to be deemed as great as Mormons make him seem, is a sin in itself and a shame. Only God and Jesus are great. Just had to say that, it was on my heart.

tawny said...

Speaking from experience...

My parents were MISSION PRESIDENTS in PROVO (your parts!) for 3 years!!! got released a year ago.

I promise promise it does go by quicker than expected. Hard, yes (absolutely)! miss them, YES yes, but honestly we made it. Our family made it. WE grew tight(er). My sisters and I ( I have 5) grew closer...we became each other's mama's.

Goodluck and I know know it's hard. Your parents will be fabulous!! They will bless those 180 plus missionaries (their new "kids!" the missionaries are so lucky to have them.)

Smileyisles said...

I love the girl in the yellow dress in the second photo. Her face is the picture of amazement. She looks enthralled to be in that room. She is also stunningly gorgeous (as all the women in your photographs tend to be) so maybe that is why she is so noticeable as well. I hope you already have plans made to visit your parents. It will pass before you know it. good luck!

Nicole said...

You made me cry! My parents are leaving for the South Africa Durban mission in a month......I miss my mom already.

Amanda said...

My parents were mission presidents in Argentina. It is hard! My Dad missed my wedding. Crazy times. I pray that it will go fast for you!

Reyna said...

So I've been reading your blog forever, and now seems like a good a time as any to tell you that you're awesome! And I'm so jealous that you got to meet the prophet.

Ash and Christian said...

Mine are in the MTC too. Headed down to Antofagasta, Chile for three years. It's been one of the hardest and yet most wonderful weeks of my life.

I told my mom to look for your parents.

So glad to have at least one thing in common. Good luck... I pray your three years go as fast as mine. :)

hugs.

Ash and Christian said...

p.s. Sure wish mine were just a 4 hour plane ride instead of 22. Especially with a 2 year old crazy beautiful monster for a daughter. Needless to say: jealous.

Telley said...

I have had mastitis a few times with my 4th - belladonna and frequent nursing has done the trick every time.

Jeannie said...

i think i can imagine how you feel. actually i thought about your parents leaving to follow Christ while i was in Mass this evening, when the Gospel was about that very subject. how if we are to follow Him, really follow, we put aside all things, even important things like family and put Him first because, as we know, He makes things right for those who follow Him.

and I thought of your parents, going on this three-year mission, right there in Catholic Mass. I felt the feelings you described when i came home and read this post. i know, because i am sure i would have felt the same way. my parents always lived in the house i grew up in, etc. now my mom has gone to Heaven (at the young age of only 74) and i'm thankful to have my Dad, even though he is ready to see God.

it's just hard, we're human; He understands.

Teresa said...

I can't imagine being away from my mom for 3 years, especially with a new baby! *HUGS*

I'm terribly envious were you able to meet with out prophet ;)

Barb @ getupandplay said...

You touched us all with this post! My parents live halfway across the world and they left when I was pregnant. It's hard, to be sure, but Heavenly Father knows just how to soothe that hurt. You will find surprising balms around every corner. Love!

Jenny said...

CJane. My dad was called to be the Mission President in the Indiana Indianapolis Mission. I was hoping for ST. Louis because my family and I live in Kansas (the rest are in Utah). The past few weeks have been hard because I just had a baby and I was not able to attend any of their mission farewells, setting apart and seeing them off to the MTC! I feel your pain. I know I will miss my parents so much, but they will be closer now (drive to Utah is 16 hours...drive to Indiana is 7 hours). Your family is amazing and you will all be blessed for the service your parents give. I wonder if our parents met in the MTC? I will have to ask them.

shelley said...

not sure if someone already posted this: my mother was a nanny for a woman... and she was undergoing really miserable mastitis... she wrapped herslef in an ace bandage very, very tightly, with frozen bags of peas underneath. best. cure.ever. good luck!

Kytsmom said...

I want to know what he has in his desk drawer he pulled out?! :)

Nancy said...

i LOVE you family!!!!! you are such great examples to ALL!!! it will be a bittersweet three years for everyone, i am sure. who knows? you could be the mother of three by the time they return! talk about blessings!!!! :)
love,
nancy in va

Amanda said...

My In-Laws are right there too- they are leaving to be mission presidents in the Marshall Islands- we are lucky that they get to leave a little late because their call was very unexpected- they have only known about it for three weeks. There was an immediate opening and so off they go. I think about my darling children and how grown up they will be when they return and it makes me sad- then I think about all of the missionaries in the Marshall Islands and how they will need all the support they can get being on "the other side of heaven" ( I know those islands were different but it's the same idea-there ain't no Target) and I feel happy that they are getting them because they really are some great people. So I'll be counting the days with you. I plan on taking my kids picture once a month in the exact same spot so they can see how much they change in three years. Good luck and hang in there.

Jalene said...

My in laws are leaving this week too! They were in the MTC with yours. We get to spend tomorrow with them and then they fly out to Oklahoma City on Tuesday. I am soooooo sad as well. We are going to miss them so much. We just got married 3 weeks ago... by the time we get home, we will have been married for 3 years!!! I can't believe it. Blows my mind.

Jeana Rock said...

I, too, feel for you. I have sent two boys off to foreign missions - one to Mongolia (really? we have missionaries there?) and one to Netherlands (isn't prostitution legal there?). My parents also went on a mission. My parents left from Lee's Summit, Missouri (misery!).
It does sound trite, but time will fly by and your family will be blessed!

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