A Chance For Do-Overs.

Capturing this moment the day sierra arrived with her sisters was bittersweet. The morning she arrived was too much for me. Too much meaning that I was overwhelmed with joy. It had been a whole year since we'd seen her and I was still in denial that she came home!  Everyone was wired and hovering over her as if there was no tomorrow. They all wanted to tell her about their life, school, recitals, show her their toys, Chelsea wanted to show her two missing teeth, and Noah wanted to show off his scooter skills, and trucks to her. Everyone wanted to know everything about her and what she did all year long too! It was fun chaos & no one could go back to sleep.

Since she arrived at six in the morning I figured she might be hungry for breakfast. You know...maybe she'd want a breakfast sandwich or something, but what she really wanted was a meatball sandwich from Wawa. I thought it was a bit unusual being that it was six a.m., but after living here for six years I am beginning to understand the whole concept of Wawa & why Jersey folks love it so much. She gobbled it down and immediately went to gather with her sisters in the living room to exchange gifts. It was a moment of simplicity and gratitude. Hugs were exchanged & there was laughter in the room...and boy did I miss her laugh! 

As I stood there capturing that moment I pictured them being 12, seven, and three years of age again. I always do that when a favorite memory comes to mind. Tender memories of the time we lived in North Carolina came flooding back. Life was easy then, and even though I may portray my life online through photos as if it's all fine and dandy life hasn't always been peachy king with Sierra being away. I've had to learn to be strong with faith in believing that she's in good hands. That she has goals to accomplish and efforts to be made. That she can be able to do things on her own without coddling her too much. That I will trust in her to make wise choices and that she won't settle for any kind of mediocre in her life especially when it comes to relationships and school. That when mistakes are made (and they will make them), that she will know that those mistakes can be mended without repeating them, and that life will go on. That she is seriously aware of being a role model for her siblings. That she will teach them by example, and no matter how hard life gets that they'll always have each other to turn to and a loving Heavenly Father that they can always pray to also.

And parents that will love her, and her sibs no matter what! 

With a new year approaching I hope that I myself can reflect on the positive things in life, and change some of my bad habits...& I have plenty of them. Everyone deserves a do-over, and it is my hope that my children will realize that no matter how many mistakes they make that theres always room for do-overs in this life without repeating them.

This year I saw my strengths turn into a weakness and that's when I realized that my imperfections may take more than 22 years to accomplish. And when I'm not strong it's God's turn to help. I wish this for my children in the new year, and every year as they grow older. 
I wish they can stay litte forever, but that's impossible. They must grow up, move away, make new friends, explore more, and experiment other cultures.

In other words...start anew, and venture out. 

I'm so happy to be with my entire family this New Year's Eve! That is an enormous blessing! 

Happy New Year's Eve everyone! 

Under The Brooklyn Bridge.

This photo makes my heart swell. It'll probably be printed and framed. The morning she flew in from Utah, and as soon as we pulled into the driveway Noah and Chelsea both came running outside of the house with squeals of delight. She didn't even seem to care that she was jet lagged. She was so happy to see this little guy including all of her sibs, and of course catch up on some sleep. Unfortunately due to taking a red eye flight we didn't let her nap too long, and so far the past couple of days spent with her have been active, busy, pretty tiring, and pretty darn fun. 

The "she" I'm referring to is my lovely daughter Sierra.

This past weekend we spontaneously drove to the city to take all of them to one of our favorite spots under the Brooklyn bridge. The last time we came here the kids absolutely loved it ,and so we had to bring the older girls to check it out. Riding Jane's Carousel is one of the kids favorite attractions, and this time both Lexie and Sierra had a chance to finally ride on it. 
^^^ Never too old to ride the carousel! ^^^
I just love coming out here, and feeling free. There's something about the city that just makes you not have a care in the world about anything or anybody. The view of both the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges are amazing! We had so much fun taking pictures, and laughing in between the saying, "say cheese".
^^^ After all the picture taking, and having the kids play around for a bit we decided to grab a bite to eat. Of course the lines were crazy long because of the holidays, and the fact that it was a Saturday evening didn't help either. I personally was craving pizza, but was outvoted by the kids to eat at Shack Shack. I obliged, and didn't complain. I was craving Julianna's really bad (there's nothing like New york pizza in Jersey!) so that kind of tells you how much I love my kids. They really wanted to eat hamburgers, and I let them. In the end I had no regrets eating at Shake Shack because their crinkle fries are back!! The had become obsolete for awhile, but I guess by popular demand brought them back. Hopefully for good this time! ^^^
We ended the evening walking along the Brooklyn bridge, and taking in the beautiful view of the skyline. We always go to Manhattan, but am beginning to fall more in love with Brooklyn.'s nice to see both "worlds" from time to time, but it's time that we don't take Brooklyn for granted. I'm so glad we were able to take Sierra into the city while she's here. Here's looking forward to six more days of quality time spent with her before she takes off! 

Happy Monday! 

Scenes Of A Christmas Day.

As I'm writing this blog post Sierra is on her way back home to Jersey, and we are so thrilled to finally have her home for the holidays after an entire year of not seeing her. Although we did miss her, our first Christmas spent without her wasn't so bad (I only wish she would have been in our Christmas photo). Nonetheless it turned out to be a pretty great day spent with great friends eating amazing food filled inside a happy home full of happy kids! 
^^^ Homemade butterhorn rolls = YUMO! ^^^
Sorry but this won't be a long post because I need to drive to Philly, and pick her up at the airport in a few minutes, but I'll quickly add a few Christmas photos of a few happy kids from our Christmas day. Even though I told them it's not about the gifts, and that the season is all about Jesus it's still nice to be thought of by friends and family. So thank you, thank you, thank you to those of you who made my kids Christmas extra special with the gifts you sent. Some of them were very much needed (i.e. gloves, beanies, clothes, and socks!) 
And maybe some of them were not so needed like an American Girl doll, the Maze Runner movie, candy, and jewelry to name a few...
but at the end of the day seeing my kids expressing gratitude with a side of happiness surrounded by the small amount of spiritual and temporal gifts they received is all that matters and that's what makes us the happiest parents in the world! 
Especially on Christmas day when they are all busy playing nice not only with their toys, but with each other too! Such a beautiful sight to see. 
Wishing y'all even more happier days of fun ahead for the remainder of the holiday season. get back into the routine, and enjoy ourselves as a family of six. At least for ten days!  

Happy Holiday weekend! 

Warm Wishes from New Jersey!

Sending y'all warm wishes from New Jersey, and lots of love this holiday season and throughout the new year! May we always remember the reason for the season, and to also have fun in between the spiritual and temporal things of this thing called life. Don't sweat the small stuff, love your family no matter what, hug your kids every chance you get, be kind, and always smile. Merry Christmas, and Happy Hannukah to all!  


The Jorgensens

**Photo taken in New York City, 2014

To Believe, & A Reminder To My Children On Christmas Eve.

So for the first time in the six years of living in Jersey we visited Santa Claus...locally! We've always driven to NYC to see Santa at Macy's or The Plaza, but because of sick kids, a 20th anniversary, and the hubs birthday all falling in one month there just wasn't enough Saturdays in December to galivant to the city to see Santa. He obviously wasn't a priority. We were just going to forego visiting Santa this year, but my gut kept telling me to make the time, and take the kiddies to see Santa. Who cares if it's in Jersey. 

And I'm so glad I did. 

It made me realize the importance of continuing to teach my kids particularly my youngest all about Santa and his role in this life. He is five years old now and is beginning to see more clearly who and what he's all about. It's sweet to see that he believes, and has so much confidence in knowing that Santa exists. My almost ten year old still has a lot of magic left in her and strongly believes in Santa (and our  elf on the shelf) still, and luckily she is beginning to truly understand that although Santa is a wonderful man that Christmas is not about the gifts. It's about being a good example. It's about love and kindness. It's about giving and thinking of others. It's about Christ and the gift that He has given us to live. It's about putting Christ back in Christmas and never forgetting the real reason of this season. 

It's about sharing the gift.

After our visit with Santa Noah kept asking me non-stop if he could open a present when he got home. No...let me rewind a bit. He began asking that question as soon as we got our first delivery of gifts which was last weekend. It escalated after our visit with Santa. He also continued to ask if it was Christmas already. My patience with my boy normally doesn't wear thin, but it was the redundant questions he was asking. That's when I realized that this was a perfect opportunity to go more in depth about Santa, and to explain to him that although it's fun to have presents that it's not what Christmas is all about.

One thing for sure is that I'll never be a Scrooge and will always, always allow the magical side of Christmas to stay within the hearts of our children. Noah just barely turned five, and his belief in the magic of Christmas is very fresh and firm. I'm all for it, and as long as they believe, I'll believe. It brings out the little kid in me especially when I see that sparkle in their eyes. Another thing I let him know is the fact that the gifts is not what makes us believe in Santa, it's the kindness, love and time he makes to see all of the children. It's also the way he treats people. 

There's a book that we always read throughout the Christmas season titled I Believe in Santa Clause. This book has taught my kids the true meaning behind Christmas and that Santa and Jesus are indeed two very similar people. So far it has taught my two oldest daughters who are now 19 & almost 15 the true meaning of Christmas. Even though they no longer believe that Santa is a real person they believe in miracles and the blessings that come from believing in Christ. 

They understand, and have long since realized that it was never about the gifts. It was the time and love we took as parents to make their past Christmases special even till this day with them knowing it was us all along who were putting those gifts under the tree. They will always "believe" in the magic of Christmas, and in return will pass it on down to their future posterity, and will continue to "believe" along with their younger sibs. 

Each year our gifts to our children "from Santa" get smaller and smaller, and so far it has not damaged their magical belief in the spirit of Christmas. It is my hope to always remind my children the real reasons for the season at a young age. Kids are very smart, and one day my two youngest will learn, and realize that it was us all along who were bearing them gifts. Spiritual gifts of love, and learning. 

But until that time comes...I'll let them believe. 

I'll let them believe. 

O Holy Night...A Winter Recital.

This past Sunday was one of the most productive ones ever. First we had a wonderful Christmas program at our church about the Story of Jesus, and for the first time in all of my kids musical recital careers Chelsea's winter recital fell on a Sunday. As soon as church was over we scurried on down to a senior home where the kids volunteered their time, and performed numerous Christmas songs on the piano. To sharing our talent with others is the greatest gift of all, and I definitely saw it within the folks in this home. Their upside down faces turned into smiles as soon as the youngest child began to play, and hearing them sing underneath their breath was proof that they really enjoyed these kids playing for them. It truly added a cheerful spirit to the room, and all these kids played very well. 
Since most of the students were playing Jingle bells, or Silent Night Chelsea wanted to pick something unique that not too many play at recitals. She decided on O Holy Night which is one of her favorites. The fact that she used to hear Sierra play it on the piano during past Christmases motivated her, and it made her think of her. This would also be her first piece using the pedals so she was a bit nervous. Although there were some teeny weeny slip ups she connected with the music, executed it very well, and in the end nailed it! She wants to play like her sisters, and our advice to her is to practice, practice, practice. 
She played absolutely beautifully and we are so pleased that she is developing the "Jorgensen musical talent". 
Hope this piece makes your spirit bright, and that you are having a wonderful season of light!
O Holy Night. from Rose Jorgensen on Vimeo.

**Past recitals you can see here,  here, and here.

Winter Concert 2014.

Attending Lexie's winter concert last week was amazing, and ended way too quickly. 2015 is fast approaching, and before we know it'll be hitting us like a ton of bricks. The years are seriously passing us by, and I am such in denial that my second daughter is three years away from graduating high school! This night was bittersweet. Watching her and her friends singing and having fun with it reminded me of all the times we attended her past plays, and concerts since she was in second grade. She is a freshman now, and I swear this girl acts as if she's already been there done that, and I know that she is destined to do something great. She is such a gem and everyone in the concert band did such an amazing job performing and singing. 

So to add a little Christmas cheer here to your holidays I've added a few links below of Vocal Resolution singing, and the entire choir singing one of my all time favorites "Hallelujah" from The Messiah. So beautiful, and powerful!  

You can listen to Carol of the Russian Children here, and Wake the World with Joy hereVocal Resolution did such a great job in singing, and I'm so happy that Lexie is a part of it! 

I hope you have a Merry Monday!  

Ho Ho Ho!! It's The Hubs Birthday!

One thing Jon could never get out of during the holidays was playing Santa at his old, old job. He started working for Rent-A-Center  soon after Sierra was born, and lasted there for ten years! The first year he began his boss asked him to play Santa and ever since he's always asked, and of course Jon would oblige. I blame it on his height, and jolly personality. Of course they had to add a pillow underneath to make him more real, and rounder. I remember taking Sierra every single year to go see "Santa" at his work, and she was one smart cookie. She knew that underneath that red suit and fake beard was her father. Once she turned three she knew it! There was no longer fooling her. Every child knows who their dad is, and I don't think it helped her believe in Santa too heavily after that. Luckily when we transferred to Texas there was more than one tall guy working in the new store, and his new boss asked someone else to play Santa. That was somewhat a relief and a nice break for Jon. It was then when Sierra realized that Santa was real because her dad was no longer hiding underneath the beard, and that it was someone else. 

Looking at this oldie of a photo brings back the fondest of memories, and there are times when I miss those days. Life was so much simpler back then. The girls were little, innocent, stress and drama free. I always looked forward to Jon playing Santa at his job. It always brought out the calmness in me, the kid in him, and giggles of happiness in the girls. His Ho, Ho, ho's were on cue and the sporadic lines that incurred at the store were unreal. Not as long as what you see in a mall setting, but seeing how sweet he was with the kids was a reminder as to why I married him. He was perfect for it, and underneath that red outfit was a holly jolly person. Not only was he good at his old job...he was also the perfect Santa. 

Although there is no more role playing Santa at his workplace he'll always remember his Santa days with Rent-A-Center. He'll always remember it because the last weekend before Christmas is also his birthday.

Today he turns 44 & he still has that jolly personality. Always in good spirits, and has a good attitude with getting up there in age. He is a hard worker, kind, compassionate, talkative, great with kids, patient, and  thoughtful. All these attributes are similar to Santa Clause which makes sense in why they always picked him to play good ol' St. Nick. 

Happy birthday Jon!! May you never forget your days as Santa and to always relive the moments of feeling like a little kid again! 

And a happy weekend to all!! 

The Day We Picked & Decorated Lolly.

I can't believe that a year ago around this time we went out to go tree picking, and it seems as if it was yesterday. And is it only nine days until Christmas?? What the heck! I'm in denial with the fact that this month is going by way tooooooo fast for me! We went out to pick our tree a couple of weeks ago right before the rain came down & we were picky in picking. This is the second real tree we've had in our 20 years of marriage, and so far we've picked some that have a girly look to them so this year we decided to name "her" Lolly. 
As usual I snap pics of the family in random mode without them knowing & caught these two in a laughable conversation. I have no idea what these two were in cahoots or lauging about, but I assume it was the trees I was scoping out. 

Here is Noah pouting because he didn't  get his way. I think he had an eye on a different tree, but because we told him it would be too tall for our ceiling, and said no he began to pout.
Mandatory pics of the kids are a must & just as Jon got Noah to smile we all looked down! Then he managed to capture one with all of us smiling! 
Once we got her home we let Lolly sit outside with a tarp covering her so she wouldn't get soaked from the rain. As soon as she dried up we put her inside on Sunday right after church. We were a little slow in covering her up with decorations, and the fact that we had to wait until the branches unfolded took longer for us to decorate her & string those lights on. In all honesty I was in no rush & after she unfolded we strung her up with white lights & that's all she had on for a couple of days. 

It was so nice not having to rush about with decorating Lolly, and the day Jon & I went to the city for our anniversary the kids dolled her up. Lexie being the nice big sister that she is captured a few shots from her iPhone of them decorating her. 
She said they all had fun decorating her, and taking picures! 
I love this time of year & am so sad that it's flying by, but am making the best of each day until the new year begins. 

And having Sierra home for awhile will complete it!! 

Our 20th.

There's nothing like venturing to New York City during the holidays. Everything looks so festive, and "Christmasy" and everywhere you walk is lit up with lights...especially on fifth avenue! There's so much to do, and see and if we lived here we'd be doing something different every day of the week. Date night would certainly be interesting, and affordable too because there are so many things we could do that are free, and without spending too much money. 

Ever since we moved to New Jersey our love for New York has increased. There's so much to see & do here compared to where we live. I just love the energy and adrenaline that this city gives. We fell in love with this city 15 years ago when we visited here for the first time. I was told that you'll either love it, or hate it, and we absolutely loved it! It is totally like the movies where you see cabs driving like bats out of hell, and all the sounds, sirens, and noise that this city gives makes you feel energized! 

Just the other night our neighbors car alarm was going off, and stayed on for like 10 minutes. It didn't even dawn on me until Chelsea blurted out how loud their car alarm was. I told her if we were living in New York that we would be hearing more than one car alarm go off, plus sirens, people talking, dogs barking, and possibly some laughter as people meander though the neighborhoods. She nodded her head and said, "your right, mom there would be more noise over there than here so I shouldn't complain." 

We love the city so much and try to make a few trips here throughout the year especially during the holidays, and since our wedding anniversary falls smack in the middle of December we have managed to come out here to celebrate, and this year we celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary in the city. 
I felt a little guilty leaving two kids at home who are getting over a cold, but Lexie insisted that we go, and have fun. She's such a good sport, and so we left early in the morning so that we could catch an early session of the temple . I just love attending the temple, and whenever we do sealings reminds me of our own! It was a beautiful time, and then we had the rest of the day enjoying ourselves in full merriment! 

We happened to come on the weekend of Santa Con. For those of you who are wondering what Santa Con is, it's when a bunch of adults dress up as Santa, and they galavant all around the city. It can get a little crazy, and super crowded on that weekend, but it's so fun seeing all the different styled Santa's. It also happened to be their 20th anniversary of celebrating Santa Con as well. 
After enjoying a walk on fifth avenue, and taking in all the sights & lights (it never gets old) we were starving so we happened to end up (we are so spontaneous) dining at a place called David Burke inside Bloomingdales. Oh my gosh their food was fabulous!!! I've never had talapia grilled fish tacos with pineapple salsa before, and I was in heaven! I originally ordered the juicy "burker" with fries (and boy was it juicy), but I couldn't help but to take a bite out of Jon's talapia fish taco! We ended up sharing each others food. Now that's true love! Ha ha! 
The hours go by so quick when you're in the city because when you're walking everywhere, and not really paying attention to time it flies. The fact that it gets dark like at 4:30pm makes it impossible to take good photos so I didn't bother. Besides...I wanted to pay attention to the hubs and our surroundings while walking around this magical city. 

Here's to 20 years of marital bliss, along with a few downers in between that have made us strong. An unconditional love and friendship with a man who is honorable, watches over me, protects me & our children, loves everything about me who has made my life come true! 
And here's to looking forward to another 20 years with each other.