So I know you’ve already talked about how your family doesn’t really watch tv, but with her [Lucy] being a bit younger than the others and home while they are gone at school all day, what does she do? Does she just play all day or does she watch even a little tv? {from this post}

Oh man this question makes me realize how far this girl has come. She was so emotionally unstable for a while that the only thing that would keep her happy was Dora and for that I will always be in love with that little Spanish-speaking gal. We had that show recorded and even had it on an iPhone ap to make the car bearable. We were in survival mode and I thanked my lucky stars for Dora every day.

That was before Lucy’s imagination took over and made her prefer that over any television, even Dora. Maybe her partial OCD behavior keeps her busy too. She will spend lots of time arranging things by color or size, and she loves, loves, LOVES to color. We have those wipe-able books you use with dry-erase markers and she loves to trace letters and carefully erase them over and over. She has also become pretty social lately and asks to play with friends a bunch so she pretty rarely watches television. Although the television bugs me for my big kids (the Disney channel drives me crazy…sorry for any Disney channel lovers out there) I know there are so many great, educational things on television that are awesome so I’m so glad we moms have that as a back-up once in a while.

I love your round-ups because they remind me to take picture of every day real life happenings. Can I ask what kind of camera you use? Your pictures always turn out really well but I do realize a good camera only does so much and the rest of it is your own skill.

The answer to that one is back here.

These next few are all from the same person on kinda the same topic:

Do you find it hard to find modest clothes for your children & are they ok about wearing them? (I have a friend with an 11 year old daughter & finds this really hard.)

We find clothes pretty easily, especially since we get some nice hand-me-downs 🙂 I think it must be what they learn in church because I don’t think they would wear immodest things if I bribed them (not that I would, of course), but I think it’s funny that they are so modest without me ever really talking about it. Now, remember my oldest girl is currently 12…I’m sure there are probably some battles to come, but for now I sure like what they choose to wear.

What do you do after church on a Sunday?

Sundays are family days. We watch old family movies, have a big dinner (which the kids usually all help make), go to the park, etc. Every once in a while Elle or one of her friends will invite a bunch of families to the park and we all bring dessert to share. I love Sundays.

How do you cope with your children’s friends if you’re all doing something?

This can be tricky in a neighborhood like ours, but we have a rule that friends have to go home by 6:00. My kids know that very well and most of their friends do too. I hate telling them to go home when they forget the rule because I don’t want to push them out but Dave and I are pretty protective of family time. We also have certain days where I proclaim that it’s just a “family day.”

How do you keep in touch with your Mum, Dad & brothers & sisters? Do you all send a joint e-mail?

I used to send joint emails…we all did, but I was really religious about it. It was kind of my journal of what was going on because we lived so far away from family. Now this blog does the trick and everyone in my family has a blog too so that is a great way to stay in touch. Being up at Bear Lake for a big chunk of the summer really helps too. We are here now and I sure love being able to catch up with so many people.

Are most of your neighbours LDS?

No, although our specific neighborhood does have many families of our same religion, most of them are other religions and the ones I know I adore. I think it’s tough because we have such a natural way of meeting the ones of our same religion at church and activities, and it’s a little more difficult to meet everyone else. I keep thinking we need to do a big neighborhood party like we did a few years ago so we can meet more new move-ins that aren’t right next to us. I think we”ll wait ’til the temperature dips below 110 degrees though 🙂

Have a wonderful weekend! And please know if you have sent in questions I haven’t gotten to I really will get to them eventually. I love them because many of them make me really think whether I am really deliberate about that specific thing…some of them make me really re-evaluate how Dave and I parent. Thanks for sending in so many good ones!


  1. oh, i liked this post, lots of questions that was a great help!!

    I have a question, you talk about how you always put Dave first, in what ways do u do this? I know he doesn't love been talked about on here, but it seems like you really have a special relationship. Do you ever disagree? If you do, how do u resolve it. Do you have weekly dates.. etc etc.

  2. I love it when you answer questions!

    Here's a question that I'm dying to know the answer to:

    You guys are blessed to go on a lot of really nice vacations and you live in a really nice neighborhood. How do you manage to still teach your kids be grateful for what they have, and not see themselves as better than other people?

    I don't know you personally, but from this blog you seem to be succeeding at this. Growing up my family was quite poor, and I always thought that was the only way that you could "guarantee" your kids would be "humble" and grateful in life. However, both my sister and I read your blog and are very impressed with how you achieve this when you are so blessed monetarily.

    Any light you could shed on the subject would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

  3. Hi,

    Awhile back you had a post about how you create two different types of kids, chubby thick haired babies and thin waspy types. My question is, what steps do you take to make sure Grace (because she's at that age) feels just as beautiful as your other girls? I was the girl with the normal weight with parents and sisters that were thin as wafers (I was also the middle girl) and I constantly had to struggle with my body image because my families' body types were seen as more traditionally beautiful. I loved how hard my mom worked to teach me how to change the things I did not like about my body to feel confidant, but I also would've liked to hear the things she may not have known to say because she was always thin, like that I would be the first (and only) one with curves and that I will understand my body's needs better in later years.

  4. You talk about really having great quality conversations with your family members when your together…it is so easy, for me, as a mother, to get busy with kids, or just let the time slip away when I'm around my dear family members. How do you make the most of that time? And for those family members that are a little tougher to talk to, what do you do there? Would love your feedback?

  5. Thank you again for doing these Q&A's.
    It really is so fun!

    My next question is: With your daughters do you have any rules about what age they can start wearing makeup or getting their ears pierced?

    Thanks for your input!

  6. I just want to say that I love these Q&As. As a new reader of your blog – and a relatively new mother – I love getting insight from other mothers who have "been there, done that". I'm always appreciative of your thoughts and thanks to sone of your posts have been thinking a lot about parenting. Thank you.
    I also want to say that I am so glad I'm not the only one who hates the Disney channel. We don't actually have TV, but the few times I've seen it at other's homes it has made me nuts.

  7. Hey Shawni! I'm from a little branch in Australia and I love love love reading your blog! (obviously, it's 3am here and I'm awake commenting when I should go back to sleep) I just wanted to say thankyou for sharing your life with us. It makes me want to do better. In an area less populated by LDS it's nice to feel a little less alone in my own goals.
    Q: How do you find time to prioritize prayer and scripture study around everything else that's going on in your home?
    I know it's lame but please put me on Friday Q&A! I'd be thrilled! 😀

  8. Shawni, I just love your blog. I read it all the way over from Australia. It's wonderful having such a strong LDS blogging community that we can draw strength from no matter where we are in the world. My husband and I do not have children yet, but we are certainly planning family big time at the moment. I love ALL of your parenting advice and know that this will be a place we vitit a lot over the years. Thanks for the writings and for your infectious spirit. Brings sunshine to my soul!

  9. ok, please expand on the friends Q&A and the 6 pm rule – is that always? because it seems like you have posts and pics that must take place after that time and seem to involve friends. I'm a bit in awe of this because we struggle quite a bit here with the friend thing – my daughter has a good friend on our road so they get together often, especially this summer, whereas my middle guy doesn't have a friend anymore on our street, so its harder and less frequent to make plans to have a friend, and then my car isn't large enough for more than one add'l friend plus my own kids, so its always unbalanced in my daughter's favor (she's the oldest so her friends tend to be easier to take along). Please expand on the 6 pm rule!!

  10. Hey, I'm not sure if I updated you. We have a house in south Tempe — we LOVE our location, and while there aren't Mormons on every corner all of our neighbors seem really nice, and my husband's job is just a few miles up the road. I'm working at Scottsdale Osborn, if you ever need an "in" there. 🙂

  11. I have used so many of your suggestions. Thank you for helping me enjoy being a mother even more. Someone else just asked my question too:)But I was wondering what things you do to put Dave first. What are some of the things that really show that for him? I love how you mention that he comes first to you. Husbands so deserve that ~ Thanks!

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