Thursday, April 16, 2015

Changing the Atmosphere

I’ve been recently reminded that the way I perceive my circumstances can really make or break my day and can have a major effect on those around me. My attitude going into places can either add or take away from the atmosphere. I want to choose to be positive, reminding myself that every opportunity is a gift.
Chip is really good at this. He typically finds the positive things in any situation while that tends to be a bit harder for me. I think more about what needs to get done and how it’s going to be accomplished. But I’ve realized I can choose which lens I’m going to view life from. Even though our life is crazy right now, I want to think of this as a opportunity more than anything else. I can trust that this is a chance to grow and learn. And it’s a chance to enjoy each other as a family doing what we love to do most.
It all starts in my mind. Am I viewing the current circumstance as an opportunity or as a burden? Am I overwhelmed by what could go wrong or am I excited about what could go right? I want to be able to find the positive in each situation, believing God brought me there for a specific purpose and will sustain me through it. If I start the day overwhelmed by everything that needs to get done, then I’m missing some of the good things along the way!
Whether you’re a stay at home mom picking up after your kiddos or work a full time job, we can all choose to be atmosphere changers. And by that I mean, we have the power to set the tone with our kids at home or with our coworkers at the office. Rather than view life as a constant to do list, think of it as an opportunity to love and serve others well. This will shift the atmosphere and you will find others inspired to do the same.

I came across this article when reading Joanna Gaines (from Fixer Uppers) blog the other day and since then it's stayed with me and I have felt a prompting to share it on my blog. Hope it speaks to one of you like it did for me. 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


Leaving the Nest

This has been a blog post I've thought of for a very long time now but never ended up finishing for whatever reason…….well because i'd get writers block and my mind would freeze up with all the thoughts I had in mind with how I was feeling….anyways, here it goes....

Flash back to 6 months before Muka was to come home from his mission. It was sinking in that my wait was coming to an end. His homecoming was right around the corner. I was beyond excited but at the same time pretty scared. haha. Scared because once he got back serious life decisions would come up that would change our life forever. Life decisions being marriage, marriage resulting in moving out, moving out resulting in leaving my family and the home I've had my whole life! Yes people, I am 23 and still live at home! I know some people really look forward to it, to moving out (0r else they don't mind it). I was that way once, when I was 17 and 18, a senior in high school and waiting to graduate...wanting to be young and free and independent. Then reality hit me and I realized to do so you have to be financially stable. Haha. I'd always worked, but I needed to get credit established and get a savings really going,,, along with making better money. Long story short, I got over that desire to move out and was happy living at home and being with my family. Haha.  It gave me that chance to save money, build my credit, buy what I wanted and when I wanted it (haha), and help out my family. So now, actually knowing that if when Elder Atiga got back and we were to stay together, marriage would be the next thing to do... & I don't know....Just knowing that it was now really happening and a possibility, it was tripping me out.

It was the night of the proposal, we were at my parents house and he had just proposed. I had made my rounds of hugging and thanking everyone for being there and I was now making my way to my room to put the ring box away. I put the ring box in my room and as I was walking back to the living room I noticed that one of my little sister's, Sariah (15 yrs old at the time), was in her room. Not only was it bizarre to have her in her room while everyone was over but she was cleaning her room. (Very unlike her...ESPECIALLY when we have a lot of people over.) So I went in her room and noticed right away when trying to talk to her that she was crying. But the crying was just at the beginning stages....once I hugged her the intense/ugly cry kicked in. haha She didn't even have to explain to me what was wrong because I already knew and was somewhat feeling the same way. So we hugged and cried together. She knew...well we both knew that although it was an exciting moment it was also bittersweet because it meant being one step closer to being separated. I know it sounds really dramatic to most people…(us Tatafu sisters typically sound dramatic to most people in general....Lol.) because It was not like we wouldn't be seeing one another again, we could everyday if we wanted. After all once I was married we'd stay living in Utah. I even wanted to stay living in the same city basically for that reason! hah. But as I think I may have mentioned in previous posts, my sisters and I are literally best friends. We were so use to going to bed, waking up, spending 80-90% of the day with one another, doing everything together. Especially the past 2 years, while Muka was gone. We got closer than ever before and things weren't the same if they were done without each other. Everything we did was the 3 of us. Cass, Sepa, and Riah.  I would be the first one to leave the house and the three that were inseparable would be separated.

After everyone was finally leaving that night, Muka and his (married) siblings wanted to go out to eat together. He was so excited and happy and I didn't want to kill his vibe or seem rude but even though I was very happy I felt vulnerable in a sense too. With it all sinking in... and I just wanted to be at home with my family...mainly with my sisters that night. You know when you were younger and you were at someones house and they really wanted you to sleep over but you were too scared to admit you weren't down to sleep over, so when they're asking your parents for you to sleep over you're like giving your parents that face hoping they're vibing with you and they say you have to go home? No? Was that just me? haha. Well, that's how I felt that night. It's hard to put a word on the feeling that's why I put the above explanation because it reminded me of that. Haha And I'd wished my parents could have said that I had to stay home that night. So I could have been there, with my sisters. But I went and did my best to put that feeling to the side for the rest of the night.

Now fast forward to the night before the was around 10pm, we had just had a get together with muka's family and mine..kind of celebrating the traditional tongan things that typically take place for weddings...& I'm driving muka to his parents to sleep for the night…but before going back home to my family…I had to write a letter to my sisters to go along with the gifts I was giving them. Kind of like my going away presents to them. I got us all matching gold plate necklaces with matching sayings on them. But as I was driving and thinking what to write, i just started balling. Like the most I had cried in a long time. I was now leaving them, and my parents, my comfort and home to start a whole new life pretty much. I would no longer have my sisters across the hall,  or be seeing my younger siblings and the funny things they do or say on a daily basis,  and not seeing my niece all day every was a lot for me at that moment and i just had to let it out. I think I let a lot out because it was the only time I cried during the rest of the wedding ceremonies and celebrations. haha.

So the wedding came and was gone & it was after the wedding and moving out, a little over a week after the wedding...It was nearly midnight & we're at the airport having had just got back from our honeymoon  that we'd left to on a red eye flight after the wedding. My mom, sister, and niece were picking us up. We had be traveling for over 24 hours and were exhausted and starving for a home cooked meal. So we went to my parents for dinner and to visit for a little. I'm bringing this all up because this is the first moment that it really hit me after officially being married. Reality. I was officially leaving the nest, people!! I was now back home (in America..even better, Utah!),  I was married...but that I wouldn't be spending the night in my childhood home with my parents just downstairs and my siblings and niece across the hall. When I said good night that night, I'd be leaving, and going to bed for the first time…with my husband, in our new home, where all our new memories would start and be made. I couldn't help but feel sad and kind of homesick/nervous when leaving them that night. Don't get me wrong, it was the main thing I was excited for when it came to this whole experience…living in my new home with my husband. But it was definitely bittersweet on that ride home.  I didn't cry yet though. Just two nights later, laying in bed, watching nieces favorite movie and my husband fell asleep. I missed them a lot and cried going to bed. haha.

 Now to the current've gotten use to it and the home sickness  is gone. I now love and feel like I have my own home. Yeah I miss my family and the life I had living at home with my family but I also love my new life with Muka. (upcoming blog on the married life) Leaving the nest was a big deal for me though! & I think looking back, maybe the biggest thing was that I was scared of loosing the relationships I had…with both my little sisters AND little brother, and to my niece Caleah. I think especially with my niece Caleah. I didn't ever wanna be the auntie she's least close to because she doesn't see me all the time like my sisters that live at home. Being an auntie to my niece means a lot to me and I didn't want to loose the closeness I had with her…of being the only one she specifically calls auntie...running to my room and we'd stay up together, eating and watching tv...dancing & jumping on the bed, playing hide and seek cause her parents fell asleep but she wasn't tired yet. Those are some of my favorite moments ever....

I guess it all boils down to still wanting to feel wanted and needed by my family as if I was still home. Still wanting my sisters to come to me and talk to me when they needed me.

Now after time has passed (over 7 mos.), I know that yeah I miss some things that go on and I'm not there for every moment at home, but they come over all the time...we have sister nights every week at my niece always comes over or we talk on the phone...and we're all still close. Because our parents raised us to be that way. It's just really made me grateful for how i was brought up and how close my parents had my siblings and I be even though we're each 4 years apart. I now can only hope to instill the things my parents taught and raised me with when we have our own kids someday. That they may love the home they were born and raised in and will have just as hard of a time leaving the nest.

So that journey has ended and the new one begins..Muka and I have our own nest....on Saybrook Lane, that I absolutely love and can't wait to share it soon on the blog!