Greetings and salutations! This feature is the fourth entree of Anthony Around Town’s highlight of motherhood. In part three, we invited three moms to share their stories, experiences, and perspectives when it comes to raising children in the Elko area. We’re going to finish hearing from our contributors: Amanda Larrinaga, Angela Browning, and Jessica Distad. If you missed the first half of their conversation, you could read it here.
Here are a couple more questions AAT asked our mommy guests!
What have been your experiences when it has come to raising kids in the Elko area? What’s your perspective on parenting in our town?
Amanda– “My experience with raising kids in Elko has been great! I moved here when I was six from Long Beach, California so, Elko is all I know as “home.” I have seen Elko grow and change over the last twenty-five years. Some good; some bad! Elko has many good people and good things. I have seen the community come together in hard times, and it gives me so much comfort knowing that I am raising my kids in the right place. I wouldn’t want to raise my kids anywhere else.”
Angela– “Raising a child or children in the Elko area can be good in many ways but also challenging. I absolutely love raising mine in Elko. My son is fourteen-years-old, and it’s nice to raise a teenager here. I like the fact that we are surrounded by friends that I grew up and attended school with. It makes it nice to know they have children in the same age group too. We stick together because it takes a village to raise children. We communicate and stay in the loop with one another to ensure our children are safe, accountable and staying on the right track.”
“It’s a caring community. I can’t name one time that something tragic has happened and the community as a whole hasn’t stepped up; I love that about Elko. It sets an example for our children and the next generation. It’s a safe and humble place to raise my children, and for that, I am blessed beyond words.”
“It can also be challenging. I have firsthand experience of raising a medical needs child in this area. It’s hard to receive specialized care here because Elko is so rural. Like I mentioned (in the last article), we participated in traveling to and from SLC, Utah for care that Kylee could not receive here in Elko. With that being said, the good definitely outweighs the bad. We feel safe here, our roots are here, and I will take that over anything, any day.”
Jessica– “I think Elko is a wonderful place to raise kids. The people here are kind and generous with themselves and their time. They value family, friendship, hard work, and commitment. There is so much to do and see. We love having all four seasons here in Elko, which we missed in California. The landscape is awesome and inspiring. We have enjoyed homeschooling our kids through the local Classical Conversations community. There are so many activities to do, both inside and outside, year-round. We love it here!”
What kind of encouragement would you offer a mother who may find herself in a similar season of life as you?
Amanda– “Some encouragement I would give any mother, is through an anonymous quote I’ve seen a million times on social media.”
“I know it’s hard, mama. I know it can be hard to get up every day and have these little people rely on you. I know it’s hard because sometimes your world feels so small. I want to remind you; you are the WORLD. You are the world that those little ones revolve around. You are their nurture, their home, and their comfort. You are everything to them, and I hope even on your hard days you know how special you are, especially, to your little people.”
“I would also encourage moms to appreciate where they are in their journey even if it’s not where they want to be. Every season serves a purpose.”
Angela– “First off, always trust in God. Believe in Him, and let Him show you His grace when you do. Secondly, take one day at a time. Life is difficult, and it is even more so when it involves your children. Stay strong, and turn to others for support. Our town is full of loving and caring people who love to help when others are in need. Let people in to support you. Lastly, your best IS GOOD ENOUGH! At times it might feel like you’re drowning, you’re not doing enough, or you even feel like giving up. Keep doing your best. You have little eyes watching. Remember they are everything to you, they are your world, but you are also theirs.”
Jessica- “I think I would encourage any parent, in any season, to be intentional in their decision-making. Every choice we make has consequences. Think about what you want the future to look like, five years, ten years, twenty years from now. Dare to dream. Where do you want to be? Who do you want there with you? What do you want out of your life? How do you want to remember this season? How do you want others to remember you? Then make choices that reflect your values. Live your life on purpose. Keep the main things, the main thing. Love God. Love others.”
“If you are married, or considering marriage, the best gift you can give your children is to love your spouse well. Bloom where you are planted. You are probably doing better than you think, so don’t be too hard on yourself. Laugh. Everybody makes mistakes. Be quick to apologize. Hang in there. This too shall pass. God loves you more than you could ever imagine.”
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See you around, Elko!