Monday, January 31, 2011


Every time I look at Amy's hands ( now that she is a grown woman), it reminds me of my Mom's hand. Amy thinks that is funny, because she says my hands reminder her of my Mom's hands too! There is something endearing about hands. I am sure it is because of how powerful  a touch can be.

When I was a little girl, in church we used to sing a song called I HAVE TWO LITTLE HANDS it goes like this...

I have two little hands, folded snugly and tight.
They are tiny and weak, yet they know what is right.
During all the long hours till daylight is through,
There is plenty indeed for my two hands to do.

Kind Father, I thank thee for two little hands
And ask thee to bless them till each understands
That children can only be happy all day
When two little hands have learned how to obey.

Words: Bertha A. Kleinman, 1877–1971

Music: William Frederick Hanson, 1887–1969

It is hard to realize that my baby Lee, is now is an Uncle and has grown into a incredible young man. He had big hands as a baby, I knew that someday they would be bigger than mine ...and they are. Still it's hard to believe that my oldest child Amy, could already be a Mother and now holding the hands of her two little girls. Yes, it is important to remember how many lives we can touch and help, by using our hands and our hearts. That's what life is all about, serving and helping one another!

"It is one of the most beautiful compensations of life, that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself" ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"When you save a girl, you save generations."  ~ Gordon B. Hinckley

"We cannot build our own future without helping others to build theirs."

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Are we truly listening?

Today at church, the speakers talked about the listening to the spirit. They gave a story that I have mentioned was about a man who is in the park and hears the beautiful song of a bird, but looks around and realizes no one notices it. But when he took a coin from his pocket and dropped it to the ground, everyone heard the sound and stopped what they were doing. The comparison is... are we able to hear the spirit of the Lord, with all the loud noises and contrast of the world? What do we do to make sure we are truly listening?

I love the scripture in St. John 14:25-27 It is where he is speaking to his disciples and explaining to them that his time upon on the earth is just for a little while. He knows of their concern when he leaves, then in 26-27 He says the most incredible thing...26 "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." 27 "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

I do believe it takes a lot to tune out the noises of the world and truly be able to hear that still small voice of the spirit. It takes a desire to have the spirit, you have to want it and do whatever you can, to prepare yourself to receive it. The speaker shared some ideas of what she does to help her listen better.

1. Pay attention to the music that you are listening to all the time....Is it something that would keep you from hearing the spirit?

2.Don't gossip.... Remember that is not only spreading horrible rumors but mentions it is gossip if you are saying something about a person, that  you wouldn't say if they were there in the same room. That is food for thought!

3. Read the scriptures daily..... How often do we spend hours, watching TV shows or movies but we wouldn't think of spending even a few minutes reading, searching and pondering about the ?

4. Pray always...When you wake up in the morning, make sure that the first  person you talk to is the Lord. It is so tempting to wake up and put on the TV or go straight to the computer and get your email or check face book. Not that any of those things are bad, but if you want to hear the spirit, you need to pray. You need to ask your Heavenly Father to help you today to hear and feel the spirit. There are many things that take up our time, and before we know it ...the day is done and can we say that we heard and felt the spirit that day? That is how God is going to communicate with us, that is how He will teach us. That is what the Savior promised His disciples, and it stands true for all of us today!

I don't know about you, but I personally need the Spirit ( Comforter ) with me each day, not only to calm my fears, and give hope to my soul, but to help me in my decision making throughout that day. As a Mother, I think it is vital to listen to that spirit to help me, teach  and guide my children. How grateful I was today reminded once again to stop and listen!

Saturday, January 29, 2011 do you measure it?

   We just spent the evening with some dear friends, that used to be our neighbors. Our kids were young then, now we are exchanging REMEMBER WHEN stories, and trying to remember names and faces. It was fun, it is hard to believe that was almost 9 -10 years ago. We had a wonderful dinner and evening together, the hours just flew by, that's what happens when you are having fun and with someone you love.
   How grateful we feel to have them as our dear friends. You know you are dear friends, when you haven't seen on talk to each other in years or maybe months... and as soon as you start talking, it was like you were together yesterday. We just started our conversations it seemed, where we left off! They are great people and it was fun to catch up on each other's families and to hear what they have been doing lately. Life is certainly a place to learn and grow. A place to reconnect and cherish. Life is good, and I am grateful for the time we had to share with them tonight!


Time is not measured
by the years that you live
But by the deeds that you do
and the joy that you give

And each day as it comes
brings a chance to each one
To love to the fullest
leaving nothing undone

That would brighten the life
or enlighten the load
Of some weary traveler
lost on Life's Road

So what does it matter
how long we may live
If as long as we live
we unselfishly give.

by: Helen Steiner Rice

"Time goes by so fast, people go in and out of your life. You must never miss the opportunity to tell these people how much they mean to you."

"One must learn a different... sense of time, one that depends more on small amounts than big ones."  ~Sister Mary Paul

"May your love grow with each day that passes, may you be lifelong friends and my the faith you have in each other, grow stronger with time."

Counting once again, but my numbers have changed!

Below is a photo of my granddaughter and I at the hospital, almost two years ago. I was on my way to once again, have another radiation treatment. I was counting down how many more treatments I had to go. I was beginning to get burnt worse each day, it was all I could do to get up, get dressed and drive to the hospital. Sometimes the fatigue and burn was so bad, I asked family or friends to take me, so I didn't have to use my left arm to drive. Life was a bit more enjoyable when Angie came with me. She always makes me smile and of course she couldn't wait to get her Chocolate Shake ( Ensure ) in the waiting room!

I realized the other day when I looked at the January 2011 calendar that it would have been 9 years that I would have been cancer free, that is, until my second diagnosis in November of 2008. Now I am counting once again, the numbers have changed...I am back to 2 years! Is that ok? I guess, that certainly is life isn't it?

Today I made an appointment for my 6 month check up at Bellevue Medical Imaging. Six months ago I had my mammogram, now this time they will do a MRI on my right breast , it is done with an IV inserted in my arm first, then they also will scan my left chest wall. I remember doing that over a year ago and it wasn't a pleasant experience, many of the women take the Vallium that they offer to help you relax. I don't do very well on medicine but after having the test, I definitely know why some women take it. I almost cried making the appointment today, I guess that's ok too?

I will continue to keep counting all the minutes, hours, days and years that my Heavenly Father gives me. I will be grateful for each one of them, and try my hardest not to waste any of them. Yes, life is hard but oh so worth it! Thank you for always listening and being there to support and help me through these tough times.


"The most important thing in illness is never to lose heart."  ~Nikolai Lenin

"Feed your faith and your fears will starve to death."  ~Author Unknown

"The greatest mistake in the treatment of diseases is that there are physicians for the body and physicians for the soul, although the two cannot be separated."  ~Plato

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Close in Heart!

    I have a dear friend, who is struggling in her marriage. I watch, as she bravely tries to save her marriage and sweet family. She is willing to forgive, change and even try again. What an amazing lady she is, she isn't just giving up and quitting...she is doing the hard stuff like WORKING on her marriage. Like most of us realize, it takes a lot of work to have a happy marriage and there are is very hard work, but it is worth it!

    I have another dear friend, who is having a knee replacement tomorrow. She is pretty scared and as I visited with her tonight, I wanted to some how take that fear away and replace it with peace and confidence, but I couldn't. I told her that we would keep her in our prayers, I know that prayers truly make a difference, I hope she believes that too! As I left her house tonight, she gave me this sweet article that a dear friend sent her. She thought I might be able to use it for my blog...she was right!

    I loved the message of appreciating the relationships and friendships we have right now, while we have them!
So with that, I will say thank you for your love, support and friendship throughout the years. You have truly changed my life for the better. Good night dear friends!

Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. Their best friends lived barely a wave away. I can see them now, Dad in trousers, tee-shirt and a hat and Mom in a house dress; lawn mower in his hand, and dish-towel in hers. It was the time for fixing things. A curtain rod, the kitchen radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress. Things we keep.
It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy. All that re-fixing, eating, renewing, I wanted just once to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence. Throwing things away meant you knew there would always be more. But then my mother became ill, and on that clear summer’s night, in the warmth of the hospital room, I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn’t any more. Sometimes, what we care about most gets all used up and goes away, never to return. So while we have it, its best we love it, and care for it, and fix it when it’s broken and heal it when it’s sick.
This is true — for marriage, and old cars, and children with bad report cards, dogs and cats with bad hips, and aging parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles and friends. We keep them because they are worth it, because we are worth it.
Some things we keep — like a best friend who moved away or a classmate we grew up with. There are just some things that make life important, like people we know who are special ... And so, we keep them close in heart and mind and spirit.

"Even though we've changed and we're all finding our own place in the world, we all know that when the tears fall or the smile spreads across our facer, we'll come to each other because no matter where this crazy world takes us, nothing will ever change so much to the point where we're not still friends."

"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.   ( Christopher Robin to Pooh ) ~ A. A. Milne

"If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you."  ~ Winnie the Pooh


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"It's going to be ok now Mommy!"

   Two days ago, Lee and I were on our way home and not too far from Amy's house, and I said to him, "Do you think we should stop and see the girls?" He still wasn't feeling good from the concussion and had homework,so we went straight home. I still felt like we should have gone, sorta but I wasn't sure why. We drove in the driveway and I had no sooner turned off the car, when my phone rang. It was Amy and she was crying, she said that she had accidentally shut her finger in the car door after putting one of the girls in their car seats. She wasn't sure how bad it was and just needed help. ( side not, don't ignore those prompting to go, like I did ) 
   I yelled for Lee who was walking into house at the time, told him to get the Arnica and Arnica gel, and hurry and get back in the car. ( Ok, if some of you are wondering what Arnica is, then go read about it is amazing stuff, trust me I have 4 really works! 

   When we arrived, the girls were still in the car. Jenny ( 16 months ) didn't know what to think and just kept repeating  "MOMMY?" "MOMMY?",( Angie  4 1/2 years old ) hadn't ever seen her Mommy cry like that, and she was scared. When then got the girls out of the car and into the apartment, Angie kept talking a mile a minute, she was really worried about her Mom. Here are a couple of things that she said that made me smile. "Mommy, Nana is here and she has some stuff that is going to help you get better, just like Heavenly Father and band- Aids"    Oh the faith of a child, it is truly refreshing!  Then we just brought everyone over to my house for dinner, I knew Amy couldn't do very much for dinner or with Jenny by herself, plus she just needed to keep the ice on her finger, so we just packed everyone back into the car. As we were walking in our front door Angie said "Ok, we're going to Nana's house, everything is going to be better here! "Everything's better at Nana's house!" I know she was glad there was someone else to help her Mom, but it was a sweet feeling for me too!  I love being their Nana!    I really love those girls of mine!
My Granddaugters and I

"Grandchildren are loving reminders of what we're really here for."  ~ Unknown

"Being blessed with grandchildren, is like having the ability to multiply your best friends" ~ Lynn Woodard

Do we notice the thorns or the rose first?

This was a beautiful story. How easy it is to see or talk about the thorns that others have, instead of all their beautiful qualities. What a great reminder, to look paste the thorns, and see the real beauty within! Enjoy!

The Rose With Thorns

A certain man planted a rose and watered it faithfully and before it blossomed, he examined it. He saw the bud that would soon blossom, but noticed thorns upon the stem and he thought, "How can any beautiful flower come from a plant burdened with so many sharp thorns?"

Saddened by this thought, he neglected to water the rose, and before it was ready to bloom, it died.

So it is with many people. Within every soul there is a rose. The God like qualities planted in us at birth growing amid the thorns of our faults. Many of us look at ourselves and see only the thorns, the defects. We despair, thinking that nothing good can possibly come from us. We neglect to water the good within us, and eventually it dies. We never realize our potential.

Some people do not see the rose within themselves; someone else must show it to them. One of the greatest gifts a person can possess is to be able to reach past the thorns and find the rose within others.

This is the characteristic of love--to look at a person and know their true faults. Accepting that person into your life, while recognizing the nobility in their soul. Help them to realize that they can overcome their faults. If we show them the rose, they will conquer their thorns. Only then will they blossom many times over.

Our duty in this world is to help others by showing them their roses and not their thorns. Only then can we achieve the love we should feel for each other; only then can we bloom in our own garden.
- Unknown

"Won't you come into the garden?  I would like my roses to see you."  ~Richard Brinsley Sheridan


"Helping others' confidence is the greatest gift anyone can give... a sincere,
well deserved compliment has greater purchasing power than money."
- Rev Dale Turner

Monday, January 24, 2011

It's important to see the whole picture!

   It has always been interesting to me, how easy it is to get into tunnel vision and not see the whole picture in some circumstances. I have heard my grandmother say, on more than one occasion "Lynn, you shouldn't go putting all your eggs in one basket!" She would go on to explain, if you put all your time and attention to one particular thing, then you might be very disappointed if something happens to your eggs. Well, she was right... when I focused on just one thing whether that was my boyfriend, my sports, my art, and didn't keep a good perspective then just as she world seem to come crashing down around me.

   Now I am on the other side to some degree, just because of my age and experience. And I am realizing how hard it is to teach my kids about perspective, especially if they have their mind set on something. I admire how patient my grandmother was, she could have said "Now listen Lynn, I have already been around the block a time or two, and I know what I am talking about, so you need to pay more attention!" But she didn't, I think she was wise enough to know when to teach and when to stand back and just observe, now that takes wisdom
   When I saw this funny carton today, it reminded me of this subject and how even as a Nana, I need to still try to keep my perspective in life and with the circumstances around me too. Yes, life is all about learning!


"The world is round and the place which may seem like the end may also be only the beginning."               ~Ivy Baker Priest

"If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail."  ~ Abraham H. Maslow

Sunday, January 23, 2011

There is always something to learn.

Most of us are familiar with the story of Sleeping Beauty. When the princess was born, the fairies were invited as godmothers to offer gifts, such as beauty, wit and musical talent. Now without telling you the rest of the story, I would like to focus on the good gifts that she was given.
I believe we were all blessed with good gifts from our Heavenly Father when we were born. But some gifts we have to work for and achieve in this life. Today in church, we talked about how transforming the power of faith and character are in our lives. It was from a talk given by Richard G. Scott in October 2010

I will share some of the notes that I took from the lesson ...

Hebrews 11:1  "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

What are some of the empowering principles upon which faith is based?

  • Trust in God and in His willingness to provide help when needed, no matter how challenging the circumstance.

  • Obedience to His commandments and a life that demonstrates that He can trust you.

  • Sensitivity to the quiet promptings of the Holy Spirit.

  • Courageous implementation of that prompting.

  • Patience and understanding when God lets you struggle to grow and when answers come a piece at a time over an extended period.

With even your strongest faith, God will not always reward you immediately according to your desires. Rather, God will respond with what in His eternal plan is best for you, when it will yield the greatest advantage. Be thankful that sometimes God lets you struggle for a long time before that answer comes. That causes your faith to increase and your character to grow.

To summarize:

  • God uses your faith to mold your character.

  • Character is the manifestation of what you are becoming.

  • Strong character results from consistent correct choices.

  • The bedrock of character is integrity.

  • The more your character is fortified, the more enabled you are to exercise the power of faith.

I have personally verified that concepts like faith, prayer, love, and humility hold no great significance and produce no miracles until they become a living part of us through our own experience, aided by the sweet prompting of the Holy Spirit.

This was a great lesson for me today, and one to help me teach my kids and granddaughters. I can remind them of how they have already been given many of the gifts and talents that they need, they don't have to wait for someone else to bestow them upon them. It can also remind them if they have faith and good character, it can be life changing for them. So when life gives them trials, they can remember to stay faithful, believing and true to what they know, completely trusting that they can grow and learn from each of these experiences. The moral of the story, is that we actually have more knowledge and gifts than Sleeping Beauty ever had! So each morning we awake... we should be grateful for that knowledge! Talking about all this sleeping is making me tired! So good night dear friends!

"Faith is a bird that feels dawn breaking and sings while it is still dark."  ~ Rabindranath Tagore

"When you have come to the edge of all light that you know and are about to drop off into the darkness of the unknown, Faith is knowing one of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on or you will be taught to fly."  ~ Patrick Overton

Friday, January 21, 2011

Growth, why is it so hard?

Today I finally got to go back to Physical Therapy, it had been 2 -3 weeks, and so I was hurting a bit. Right after that, one of my kids got hurt and without going into detail, that is what we did for the rest of the day and night, more doctor apt's. and imaging.

When  you are asked as a Mom, how do you handle this? How do you not get discouraged? Or do I ever ask Why me? Those are all important questions and ones I should know as a Mom...thank goodness I do. I have said many times, it doesn't do you any good to go down the WHY ME road? I have done it, it is frustrating and the questions just keep coming? I have found greater peace when I ask ...what am I to learn from this? If the answer doesn't come right away, then I try to find someone to serve. I know that sounds silly but...there is ALWAYS someone worse off than you out there. Service always makes  you feel better!

I feel strong about the lessons that we learn in life that make us grow. Growing is just plain hard, sometimes but that is where the real learning comes in ...that is where the answers are. I try to tell my kids, to remember all the wonderful family and friends that are around them for support. I also try to remind my kids that, the path you are on, may not necessarily be the one you are suppose to be traveling tomorrow or in the future.

I have to remember all these things too, every day. Yes, just like many of my dear friends who are going through different pains and struggles right now...we are all still growing and learning. The important thing is to keep our faith, and keep asking "what am I to learn from this?"

Once again dear family and friends, thank you for always being there for us! We are truly grateful for each of your positive thoughts that are sent our ways and all the prayers that you send Heavenward in our behalf!

“If we Don't change we don't grow. If we don't grow we aren't really living”   ~ Gail Shee

"We would never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world."  ~ Helen Keller

"It would not be better if things happened to men just as they wish."  ~ Heraclitus

Thursday, January 20, 2011


When my kids were little and we were all out at the store, sometimes a woman would come up to me and ask me what the name of my Day Care was? I was confused? Then they would go on talking about how they would like to put their kids in a Day Care, where the people would take their kids out on field trips I was doing. I then told them that all these ( 4 ) children were mine...their eyes about popped out of their heads and then they just walked away, or might have said how cute they thought the kids were. Now obviously this was on one of those days ...where everyone was being nice and happy, not all of them were like that (shocker). I just smiled because no one could believe that we actually wanted four kids, they just thought we didn't know how to stop having them. How I wish I would have had this article, on the Price of Children to give to that would have been priceless!

The Price of Children

This is just too good not to pass on to all. Something absolutely positive for a change. I have repeatedly seen the breakdown of the cost of raising a child, but this is the first time I have seen the rewards listed this way. It's nice, The government recently calculated the cost of raising a child from birth to 18 and came up with $160,140 for a middle income family. Talk about sticker shock! That doesn't even touch college tuition. But $160,140 isn't so bad if you break it down. It translates into:

· $8,896.66 a year,
· $741.3 month, or * $171.08 a  week.
· That's a mere $24.24 a day!
· Just over a dollar an hour.

Still, you might think the best financial advice is don't have children if you want to be "rich." Actually, it is just the opposite.

What do you get for your $160,140?

  • Naming rights. First, middle, and last!
  • Glimpses of God every day.
  • Giggles under the covers every night.
  • More love than your heart can hold.
  • Butterfly kisses and Velcro hugs.
  • Endless wonder over rocks, ants, clouds, and warm cookies.
  • A hand to hold, usually covered with jelly or chocolate.
  • A partner for blowing bubbles, flying kites
  • Someone to laugh yourself silly with, no matter what the boss said or how your stocks performed that day.

For $160,140, you never have to grow up. You get to:

  • finger-paint,
  • carve pumpkins,
  • play hide-and-seek,
  • catch lightning bugs, and
  • never stop believing in Santa Claus. You have an excuse to:
  • keep reading the Adventures of Piglet and Pooh,
  • watching Saturday morning cartoons,
  • going to Disney movies, and
  • wishing on stars.
  • You get to frame rainbows, hearts, and flowers under refrigerator magnets and collect spray painted noodle wreaths for Christmas, hand prints set in clay for Mother's Day, and cards with backward letters for Father's Day.

For $160,140, there is no greater bang for your buck. You get to be a hero just for:

  • retrieving a Frisbee off the garage roof,
  • taking the training wheels off a bike,
  • removing a splinter,
  • filling a wading pool,
  • coaxing a wad of gum out of bangs, and coaching a baseball team that never wins but always gets treated to ice cream regardless.

You get a front row seat to history to witness the:

· first step,
· first word,
· first bra,
· first date, and
· first time behind the wheel.

You get to be immortal. You get another branch added to your family tree, and if you're lucky, a long list of limbs in your obituary called grandchildren and great grandchildren. You get an education in psychology, nursing, criminal justice, communications, and human sexuality that no college can match.

In the eyes of a child, you rank right up there under God. You have all the power to heal a boo-boo, scare away the monsters under the bed, patch a broken heart, police a slumber party, ground them forever, and love them without limits.

So . . one day they will like you, love without counting the cost. That is quite a deal for the price!!!!!!!

Moral of this love and enjoy your children and grandchildren

"Kids go where there is excitement. They stay where there is love."  ~ Zig Ziglar

"We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today."   ~Stacia Tauscher

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lessons in life...they just keep coming!

   Recently in our family we had something that caused some concern, worry and anticipation. It is interesting how much more sincere each prayer becomes, how precious moments seem to be, and how homesick you get for your family when things like this happens. Not everyone in our family is a worrier ( is that even a word? ), but each of us have learned from past experiences ... to pull together, pray together and to support each other, during these times. We have friends and family both who are praying for us (as well as we do them) and we feel like life is truly just a little bit better because of them!
   We were blessed with good news, and so we can now breath a little easier and be less scared. Most important we can thank our Heavenly Father (AGAIN), for the tender mercies that He has extended to us. Life is hard, life is full of lessons is Good, and we are grateful for that! Thanks for always being there for us, we hope we can return the favor for you someday! Enjoy the poem!

angie face (quote)

A Lesson in Life

Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by means of good or bad luck. Illness, injury, love, lost moments of true greatness and sheer stupidity all occur to test the limits of your soul. Without these small tests, if they be events, illnesses or relationships, life would be like a smoothly paved, straight, flat road to nowhere. 

If someone hurts you, betrays you , or breaks you heart, forgive them. For they have helped you learn about trust and the importance of being cautious to who you open your heart to.

If someone loves you, love them back unconditionally, not only because they love you, but because they are teaching you to love and opening your heart and eyes to things you would have never seen or felt without them.

Make every day count. Appreciate every moment and take from it everything that you possibly can, for you may never be able to experience it again.

Talk to people you have never talked to before, and actually listen. Hold your head up because you have every right to. Tell yourself you are a great individual and believe in yourself, for if you don't believe in yourself, no one else will believe in you either.

You can make of your life anything you wish. Create your own life and then go out and live it.

"Life is what we make it, always has been, always will be."  ~Grandma Moses

"We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope."  ~ Martin Luther King

"The greater the difficulty, the more glory in surmounting it. Skillful pilots gain their reputation from storms and tempests."   ~ Epictetus

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

What are my priorities?

Tonight a friend and I went to a church meeting for all the women ( it is called Relief Society ), we have it once a month, and the topic this month was about ORGANIZATION. I know...something I need! It was a good class and even at my ripe old age of 51(just kidding), I realized a few things that I could do to simplify my life. Here are some of the notes that I took and things that meant a lot to me.**********************************************************************************************************************************

"I have said lately that women are like lionesses at the gate of the home. Whatever happens in that home and family happens because she cares about it and it matters to her. She guards that gate, and things matter to that family if they matter to her. For example, if the lioness at the gate believes in the law of tithing, tithing will be paid in that family. If that family has a humble little portion of ten pesos coming in, that lioness will safeguard the one peso if tithing is important to her. If that lioness at the gate knows about renewing her baptismal covenants with God, she will be in sacrament meeting on Sunday, and she will prepare her children to be there. They will be washed, cleaned, combed, and taught about that meeting and what happens there. It isn’t a casual event, but it is serious to her, and it will be serious to them.

Sisters, you are each like the lioness at the gate. This means that there has to be some prioritizing. I was taught years ago that when our priorities are out of order, we lose power. If we need power and influence to carry out our mission, then our priorities have to be straight.

Years ago I began using a system that works for me, and maybe it will work for you. There was a time when I needed to prioritize, and in one of those sacred meetings between me and the Lord, He gave me three categories that I have worked from, and they have been a guide in my life. The categories are the essential things, the necessary things, and the nice-to-do things. I started writing those things down. I asked, “What has to go in the category of essential?”

We have talked about being the lioness at the gate and how important it is to safeguard that home, that family, to have that kind of power. We discussed that nothing really powerful happens in a home or a family if the lioness doesn’t care about it or invest in it. To move the Lord’s work forward, we have to have a powerful faith, a strong faith. We need stronger families and homes and we are to seek out and help those who are in need.

We know that when our priorities are out of order, we lose power. It takes personal revelation every day to help us prioritize and re-prioritize and keep at bay the influences of the world that would draw us from what we are to do."

The teacher's lesson came from a talk by Julie B. Beck in April 29, 2010


  It was a great meeting, I think the part that I loved the most is powerful our faith and prayers can be, in raising and teaching our families. I personally know that when I put the Lord first, that everything else in my home and life seem to fall in place. There is a better spirit in our home.
I have always thought our homes need to be protected... there are many things out there in the world trying to dissolve the family. It is vital that we stay close to our Heavenly Father and know what is essential, necessary and nice-to-do in our lives. If you ever mixed up about your priorities, then just ask your sweet little children or grandchildren (they have such a clearer view), and they will quickly set us on the right path! I am grateful for this class and everyone that participated in it. Yes, life is all about learning, and no matter what age you are...there is still a lot to learn out there! 

"Success is only another form of failure, if we forget what our priorities should be."  ~ Harry Lloyd

"Sometimes it's the smallest decisions that can change your life forever."  ~ Keri Russell

"Decide what you want, decide what you are willing to exchange for it. Establish your priorities and go to work."  ~ H. L. Hunt



Monday, January 17, 2011

Life is hard sometimes!

I loved this poem, it is a bit long... but worth reading!  Good night dear friends!

The Road Less Traveled

How often we must bear the challenges of life;
The endless roller coaster between happiness and sorrow;
The constant ups and downs of daily strife.
And always the question remains .... why?
Life is not an easy road for most;
It twists and turns with many forks in the road,
Although always, and inevitably, we are given a choice ...
Do we turn to the right ... or the left?
Do we take the high road ... or the low road?
Do we take the easy path ... or the difficult one?
Decisions are not easy for those struggling for direction ...
And sometimes the many choices and signs become overwhelming.
While standing at a crossroads in life,
The urge is to take the most comfortable path;
The road with least resistance ...
The shortest or most traveled route.
And yet, if we've been down that comfortable road before;
Have gleaned its lessons in life, and learned from our experiences;
Do we yet again follow the known?
Or does our destiny lie in another direction?
The fear of the road less traveled is tangible and all too real;
It manifests itself in many ways,
And tends to cloud the issues that might otherwise be clear.
It is in these times of confusion,
That we must seek peace and solitude;
Time to contemplate on our life,
Our experiences and our choices past;
Time to look back, and reflect on what we have learned
Without fear or confusion.
For only each of us knows our own personal thoughts;
Our unique past and personal history;
The experiences that brought us to the crossroads we now face.
We can always learn a small degree from others experiences,
And yet ... no one person can walk in our shoes,
Others know not, the trials and tribulations faced in private ...
For each is individual ... unique ... and personal.
And that is why ... while standing at a crossroads,
Only "we" can formulate the decision for ourselves;
The true direction that lies within;
The choices we must deliberate on with clarity and wisdom.
For it is only through personal reflection,
That we can now choose our destiny;
... Our next adventure;
... And the future we will embrace.~Kit McCallum

«The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about the future, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly.» ~ Siddhartha Gautama

Sunday, January 16, 2011

We all need HOPE!

For some reason the last few days, I have been running out of energy early into the day. I can't seem to get past the tired stage. I really have been doing so much better, that it sorta scares me to be this tired all of a sudden again. I slept in yesterday till 11:30 a.m. and today till 11:00 a.m., I can't remember the last time that I have slept that long and yet...I still woke up tired. Maybe it's my emotions, there have been a few things weighing on my heart lately. I really don't know the answer but need to find out soon, hard to go back to this kind of TIRED!

I found this poem on HOPE, maybe because I need some right meant a lot to me! Good night dear friends!


It's magic and it's free
It's not in a prescription
It's not in an IV.

It punctuates out laughter,
It sparkles in our tears,
It simmers under sorrows,
And dissipates our fears.

Do you know what Hope is?
It's reaching past today,
It's dreaming of tomorrow,
It's trying a new way.

It's pushing past impossible,
It's pounding on the door,
It's questioning the Answers,
It's always seeking more.

It's rumors of a breakthrough,
It's whispers of a cure,
A roller coaster ride
Of remedies, unsure.

Do you know what Hope is?
It's candy for the soul,
It's perfume for the spirit,
To share it makes you Whole

Author Unknown

"In all things it is better to hope than to despair"  ~ Johann Wolfgang con Goethe

"When things are bad, we take comfort in the thought that they could always be worse. And when they are, we find hope in the thought that things are so bad they have to get better."

Saturday, January 15, 2011

It must be in the Genes!

I always wondered when my kids had kids, what they would look like and what they would act like?  You know the age old saying which goes like this on a bad day..."I hope you have a kid, just like you someday!"  Well, I have to say that I have been quite shocked to see that Amy's kids turn out like Lauren, instead of Amy!  Now Angie, looks like Amy except for the red hair, but her personality is so much like Lauren's ( her Aunt ). Then came along another cute red head, and she acts a lot like Lauren too. There have been many days that Amy has said..."how in the world did I get two kids that are just like Lauren, when I was a very calm and obedient little girl?" I guess it is in the genes, because all 3 of these girls that  you see in the photo ...walk to the beat of a different drum! Now, the only thing more unfair would be, if Lauren gets kids like Amy...nice, calm, and never has fits! Oh well, I guess that is how life goes! :)
No matter what, we wouldn't give any of them back...they are the best and they make life so much FUN!

"Family faces are magic mirrors looking at people who belong to us, we see the past, present, and future." 
~ Gail Lumet Buckley

"The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together."  ~ Erma Bombeck

How is your vision?

I read this quote the other day that really hit home to me. Here it is ... "A blind person asked St. Anthony: "Can there be anything worse than losing
eye sight?" He replied: "Yes, losing your vision." 

That is so true! Being able to have a healthy perspective in life is very valuable. It seems like the hardest times to do that is gets really hard such as... a heart ache, illness and disease, death, loss of job and on and on. But those are the times that we need to make sure that our vision is clear. We must focus on what is real and what is the most important. I guess that is why my whole life I have loved people older than me. When my grandmothers and Aunt use to tell me stories about their lives...I loved it! I hung on every word. It seemed like they gained a greater insight into life, because of their trials and struggles. At my age now, I truly understand how that happens. Life is a great teacher and we need to be great pupils and keep our vision clear.

So let's try and remember, that no matter what happens in life, there is a reason,and that there is a lesson to be learned in all of this. Yes, being able to see that life is good, and that we are blessed is a very important thing...that we definitely DON'T want to lose!


"So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they're busy doing things they think are important. This is because they're chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning." (p.43) from Mitch Albom's international bestseller "Tuesdays with Morrie

"May we never let the things we can't have, or don't have, or shouldn't have, spoil our enjoyment of the things we do have and can have. As we value our happiness, let us not forget it, for one of the greatest lessons in life is learning to be happy without the things we cannot or should not have."  ~ Richard L. Evans

"A beautiful life does not just happen, it is built daily by prayer, humility, sacrifice and love. May that beautiful life be yours always!"   ~ Dennis Castillo

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Faith and Prayers needed!

I was reading an article today and it made me think of my dear friend who is going through more medical tests tomorrow with her husband. He has been sick for quite awhile, and they still are doing more and more scans and tests to see how they can help him. I have watched her stay by his side, and she continues to pray for him to have comfort and healing. I think it is hard to watch someone you love hurt or be sick. Sometimes you wish it could be you instead of them...maybe that's the Mother in all of us?

Here is part of the talk that I read, I hope it helps her, and any of us who are going through times in our lives where there is an illness and we need to be healed.

We know that the prayer of faith, uttered alone or in our homes or places of worship, can be effective to heal the sick. Many scriptures refer to the power of faith in the healing of an individual. The Apostle James taught that we should "pray one for another, that ye may be healed, " adding, "the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much" ( James 5:16 ).
A recent nationwide survey found that nearly 8 in 10 Americans "believe that miracles still occur today as [they did] in ancient times." A third of those surveyed said they had "experienced or witnessed a divine healing."

As children of God, knowing of His great love and His ultimate knowledge of what is best for our eternal welfare, we trust in Him.  ~ Dallan H. Oaks April 2010

So tonight, I will say my prayers and remember this dear friend and her family. I will pray that the doctors will find a way to bring comfort and healing to her husband. I will pray for all of those who need healing of any kind. Yes, I feel grateful to know for myself that God hears and answers our prayers.To also know that miracles continue to occur today, our family have witnessed them ourselves. I also humbly realize, that the our Heavenly Father knows each one of us and what we need, now I need to trust and have faith ...with whatever the outcome is. This talk was a great reminder of that. Good night dear friends!

"When you have come to the edge of all light that you know and are about to drop off into the darkness of the unknown, Faith is knowing one of two things will happen: there will be something solid to stand on or you will be taught to fly".  ~ Patrick Overton

"The most important thing in illness is never to lose heart."  ~Nikolai Lenin

"Feed your faith and your fears will starve to death."  ~Author Unknown

Happy to Return

First of all, let me apologize for the problems with my blog the last couple of days. I really don't like when something goes wrong with my computer, or my car (I know I sound like a girl) but, I just want them to WORK! :)
Hopefully everything is up and running now. It is very late and I need to head to bed. But before I go, I found this wonderful short story and I loved the moral of it. Do you love what  you do each day, or are you always dreaming your life to be different ?
Read it and think about it.    Good night!

An Inspirational Short Story
Happy To Return

By Byron Pulsifer, © 2010

Recently, we went on a vacation for a week that involved visiting four different ports in the sunny and warm climate of the Caribbean. There were moments of laughter, fun, and great food. It's a funny thing when you go away that each day of the vacation also counts down to the end and a return to work.

It was twelve years since we went on a vacation, so this vacation was viewed with anticipation of a great break away from my daily routine. And, we weren't disappointed.

But, there was something very different about this vacation compared to those when we worked in a corporate environment. The main difference was that when we returned, when the vacation was rapidly drawing to a close, we didn't have the same feelings of approaching stress and dread.

In this most recent vacation, it wasn't that we didn't thoroughly enjoy the various fun and new activities, the break away from routine, the pleasure of touring different countries and cultures, the opportunity to do what we wanted when we wanted, or the leisurely pace of each day. What was significant was that we didn't even dread the last day of vacation knowing that we would soon have to return to my previous filed. You see, we knew that we were returning to what we love to do not what we had to do.

The feelings experienced in the last couple of days of vacation were viewed with the same joy as the very first days. In previous times, the last days of vacation were dreaded, we experienced a mounting sense of stress because we knew that a return to our field of employment was "work" and not something that we loved and thoroughly enjoyed.

The point is this: if you do what you love, it doesn't matter in the least that a vacation has to end. If you love what you do you will not find yourself wishing for even a few more days of vacation, or wishing that you could keep enjoying this vacation for much, much longer. A love of what you do draws you back like a magnet; draws you back to pleasure not to toil; draws you back where you feel comfort and completeness.

A more important question is how do you feel when you return from vacation and go back to work. Read the words of wisdom in this inspirational short story and reflect on your own situation. Are you happy to return?


"Being happy is something you have to learn. I often surprise myself by saying "Wow, this is it. I guess I'm happy. I got a home I love. A career that I love. I'm even feeling more and more at peace with myself." If there's something else to happiness, let me know. I'm ambitious for that, too."   ~Harrison Ford

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

"But my mommy said...

Today was the bittersweet, because I began taking down all my Christmas decorations! I know it's a new year, and the Christmas holidays are over, but I just want to enjoy it as long as I can. Last week when my granddaughter came over she said "Nana, you still have Christmas decorations up" I said "Yes, because Papa and Lee don't want to take it down right now, and that is ok with me... because I just LOVE Christmas, don't you?" Her reply was sweet, she said "Nana, I think we could be twins, because we both love Christmas so much!" I just smiled and told her "yes, we are just like twins."
Then this weekend she came over and said "Nana, you still have your Christmas decorations up" Before I could say yes, isn't it wonderful it's like we are twins or something, she interrupted me and said "But Nana, my mommy said... it's not Christmas anymore and next it's going to be Valentine's Day! "
So she came over today, and we started taking down Christmas. I know it's all good, but I really love the transformation that the whole world seems to take, when it is almost Christmas. Everyone is a bit nicer, happier, generous, thoughtful and on and on. I guess the word that really sums it all up is... people are just more Christ-like. Of course, I think that is appropriate, since that's whose birth we are celebrating.

So I will take down Christmas, but I pray we all can keep the same spirit of Christmas, all year long!

"I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month."
~Harlan Miller

"Somehow not only for Christmas
But all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others
Is the joy that comes back to you.
And the more you spend in blessing
The poor and lonely and sad,
The more of your heart's possessing
Returns to make you glad."
John Greenleaf Whittier

"Christmas, my child, is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it's Christmas."
Dale Evans
"Peace on earth will come to stay when we live Christmas every day."
Helen Steiner Rice

P.S. In the last two and half hours, we have had a storm front come in, and we already have almost 3 inches of snow!!! Oh well, at least I haven't taken my tree down yet! :)

Monday, January 10, 2011


Someone sent this to me today, it was a true story about perception. It was wonderful and definitely worth passing on. It also gives us all something to think about. Enjoy!


In Washington , DC , at a Metro Station, on a cold January morning in 2007, this man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes.  During that time, approximately 2,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.  After about 3 minutes, a middle-aged man noticed that there was a musician playing.  He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds, and then he hurried on to meet his schedule.

About 4 minutes later:

The violinist received his first dollar.  A woman threw money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk.

At 6 minutes:

A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

At 10 minutes:

A 3-year old boy stopped, but his mother tugged him along hurriedly.  The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head the whole time.  This action was repeated by several other children, but every parent - without exception - forced their children to move on quickly.

At 45 minutes:

The musician played continuously.  Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while.  About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace.  The man collected a total of $32.

After 1 hour:

He finished playing and silence took over.  No one noticed and no one applauded.  There was no recognition at all.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world.  He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars.  Two days before, Joshua Bell sold-out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100 each to sit and listen to him play the same music.

This is a true story.  Joshua Bell, playing incognito in the D.C. Metro Station, was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities.

This experiment raised several questions:

    *In a common-place environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty?

    *If so, do we stop to appreciate it?

    *Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made . . .

How many other things are we missing as we rush through life?


"Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing."  ~ Camille Pissarro

"The voyage of discovery is not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes."  ~Marcel Proust.

"What you see and hear depends a good deal on where you are standing; it also depends on what sort of person you are."  ~C. S. Lewis.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Sharing Mothers

I have been grateful for my dear friends, who are kind enough to share their Mothers with me. My Mom passed away when I was 40 years old, there isn't a day that goes by that I don't miss her. Tonight a dear friend of mine called and said that while her Mother was in town for a wedding, could they come over and visit. She wanted to see my house all decorated for Christmas...yes, which is still is. Her Mother will be 93 years old in March, and what a sweetheart she is, and she is doing amazing well at her age. She is beautiful inside and out. Her spirit is still so happy and strong, that must be where her daughter gets it from. I felt honored to have them in my home.

The ornament of a house is the friends who frequent it." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Well, it is late and I am worn out... but just wanted to share with you this sweet poem and quote about Mothers. Please remember to hug and cherish your Mom, if she is still with you. And if you are like me and she has already passed away, then remember to try your hardest every day to be everything that your Mom would have wanted you to be.Try to be the best Mom you can be to your kids, that way... your Mom's life will effect generations to come!
Good night dear friends!

“Most of you are mothers, and very many of you are grandmothers and even great-grandmothers. You have walked the sometimes painful, sometimes joyous path of parenthood. You have walked hand in hand with God in the great process of bringing children into the world that they might experience this estate along the road of immortality and eternal life. It has not been easy rearing a family. Most of you have had to sacrifice and skimp and labor night and day. As I think of you and your circumstances, I think of the words of Anne Campbell, who wrote as she looked upon her children:

You are the trip I did not take;

You are the pearls I cannot buy;

You are my blue Italian lake;

You are my piece of foreign sky.

(“To My Child,” quoted in Charles L. Wallis, ed., The Treasure Chest [1965], 54)

"You [mothers] are the real builders of the nation wherever you live, for you have created homes of strength and peace and security. These become the very sinew of any nation.”   ~Gordon B. Hinckley,


Today I got to spend the day with my two granddaughters, we had a wonderful time! We started out with a snack, then put Jenny down for a nap. Next Angie and I were off to Nana's sewing room, where we created a special little purse for her. Then she played play dough, while her Mommy and I sewed some baby gifts.

Then Miss Jenny woke up and she helped me take out all my buttons and spread them all over the room. We played with the kitchen set and a ball too. Next we got a purse made for Jenny, this time I crocheted it ( while Jenny was crawling all over me ). Yes, it was a full and fun day! ( Did I mentioned that I am tired? )

A friend of mine saw me at the store with Amy and the girls the other night and said "you are so lucky to live close to your grandchildren." She is right, I realize that might always be the case with all my grandchildren, but I am at least going to try to enjoy each moment I am given. I hope I can make a difference in their lives, I hope I can help them understand their potential and value. I hope they know, that no matter what...Nana will always be there for them! 
I love these quotes about Grandmothers ( of course it means Nanas too ). There is an amazing thing that happens to your heart, when you hold these special kids in your arms for the first time, life from then never the's BETTER!

HERE IS A PHOTO OF MY SWEET SISTER-IN-LAW with her three granddaughters, aren't they beautiful?


"It is as grandmothers that our mothers come into the fullness of their grace."    ~Christopher Morley


"Grandchildren are God's way of compensating us for growing old."   ~ Mary H. Waldrip

"Our grandchildren accept us for ourselves, without rebuke or effort to change us, as no one in our entire lives has ever done, not our parents, siblings, spouses, friends - and hardly ever our own grown children."
~Ruth Goode

Friday, January 7, 2011

Celebrating each day!

Today was a great day, because once again I got to teach at the Quilt Shop. You know, I am sorta like Super Man (well ok, that is a stretch but let me explain), he gets his energy from the sun and I get my energy from people! It just brightens my day, to be around so many neat ladies! I just love having the chance to share some of my talents, and to make new friends.

Today is also our youngest daughter Lauren's 20th birthday, it is hard to imagine that she is 20 already! When she was a little girl, she was so tough to raise. She was definitely a LIVELY CHILD. She had a mind of her own and went to the beat of her own drum ( as they say )! We would laugh at some of the funny things she would do or say, then I would cry, wondering how in the world I am going to teach her anything...because you had to deal with her in a totally different way than the rest of the kids (we have 4). We always said that Lauren had so many different faces and moods when she was little. Yes, there were days that I wondered what she would turn out like, and yet by the time she hit her teens...she was a "piece of cake" to raise. From then on, everything got easier (parenting her at least) and it seemed like the sky was the limit for her hopes and dreams. It certainly has been fun to watch all four of our kids, grow and develop into the incredible people that they are. They all have accomplished more than I could have ever dreamed. I feel very blessed to be their Mother!

(since Lauren is a photographer, we happen to have of those different faces of Lauren)

"Your birthday is a special time to celebrate the gift of "YOU" to the world."

"Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact."
- William James

"Happiness depends upon ourselves."
- Aristotle

"Whatever you want in life, start today.
Not tomorrow - today.
Let it be a small beginning - a tiny beginning.
Your happiness depends on starting today - every day
- jlh

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Weaknesses can become strengths!

   Today I spent creating with a couple of friends, it was great. I am so blessed to be surrounded with so many  friends, who don't mind sharing their talents. We really had a good time, and I was grateful to feel good enough, to spend some time with them.
   Jeff sent this story to me the other day and it was inspiring! It goes to show you, that you can accomplish way more things than you could even imagine, when you just try. But kids are amazing! I spent much of my teenage years and single adult years, teaching handicapped pre-schoolers. No matter how bad their struggles were, they had a smile on their faces, and kept trying. I was amazed at how resilient and determined their were. I loved working with them and felt blessed to be able to learn from them.
I hope when you read this story, that you will remember no matter what our weaknesses are in life, we can make them our strengths! Good night, dear friends!

"Sometimes your biggest weakness can become your biggest strength.  Take for example the story of the 10 year old boy who decided to study judo despite the fact that he had lost his left arm in a devastating car accident.  The boy began lessons with an old Japanese judo instructor.  The boy was doing well, so he couldn't understand why, after 3 months of  training the master had taught him only one move.  "Sensei," the boy finally said, "Shouldn't I be learning more moves?"  "This is the only move you know, but this is the only move you'll ever need to know,” the Sensei replied.  Not quite understanding, but believing in his teacher, the boy kept training.  Several months later, the sensei (Japanese judo instructor) took the boy to his first tournament.  Surprising himself, the boy easily won his first two matches. the third match proved to be more difficult,  but after some time, his opponent become impatient and charged the boy; the boy deftly used his one move to win the match.  Still amazed by his success, the boy was now in the finals.  This time his opponent was bigger, stronger and more experienced.  For a while, the boy appeared to be over matched.  Concerned that the boy might get hurt, the referee called a time-out.  He was about to stop the match when the sensei intervened."No," the sensei insisted, "let him continue."  Soon after the match resumed, his opponent made a crucial mistake: he dropped his guard.  Instantly the boy used his one move to pin him.  The boy had won the match and the tournament.  He was the champion.  On the way home, the boy and sensei reviewed every move in each and every match.  Then the boy summoned the courage to ask what was really on his mind."  Sensei, how did I win the tournament with only one move?"  “You won for two reasons," the sensei answered. "
"First you've almost mastered one of the most difficult throws of all of judo.  And second, the only known defense for that move is for your opponent to grab your left arm.
This young boy had a sensei or a master to teach him and train Him, we too have a Master in this great work, if we listen to Him and follow him and do the things which He has asked us to do we too will have our greatest weaknesses become our greatest strengths.

"Our strength grows out of our weaknesses"  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Build us your weaknesses until they become your strong points." ~Knute Rockne

"If human beings are perceived as potentials rather than problems, as possessing strengths instead of weaknesses, as unlimited rather than dull and unresponsive, then they thrive and grow to their capabilities."        ~ Barbara Bush

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Thankful for my friends!

   Today I talked a long time to one of my dear friends. We haven't talked in a while,  so it was especially nice to be able to just catch up on what is going on in each other's lives. I was struggling with something and shared my concerns with her. I knew that she loved me, and would understand how I felt... and even if she didn't, I knew she cared enough to listen. I was grateful for her wisdom and concern.
   Some of her advice was new, but much of it was what I knew already, but I just needed to be reminded of it. After quite some time on the phone ( you noticed I didn't tell you how long ), we said our good-byes. She said "well this was like pajama party, we got to talk, laugh and, I still have my pajamas on". I said "me too"! We laughed so hard!
Yes, true friends are a blessing in life! And I should know, I have many of them!

A best friend
is always there,
whether you need advice,
or a pep talk,
or even a shoulder to cry on.
A best friend
listens with her heart
and is always honest with you,
even though the truth
may not be
what you want to hear.
A best friend
knows all your secrets,
understands your fears
shares your dreams.
A best friend
never stops believing in you
even if you give up
on yourself.
you are
that kind of friend
to me.
And no matter what happens,
you always will be.
You are my best friend
my forever friend.
- Renee Duvall

"To the world you may be just one person, but to one person you may be the world."  ~ Brandi Snyder

"A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are"

"Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget."

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Service and gratitude

   My youngest brother Ty works for the Humanitarian Department for our church. He is an amazing man and one with great compassion, which makes him perfect for the job. He also is very well educated and speaks many languages.
   When he was a small boy, I used to have him help me with my homework ( that's sad...I know, but a girl has to do...what a girl has to do ). Never mind that he is 10 years younger than me! Shhhh...we don't want that to get around! :)
I have always looked up to him, even though he is younger. He is strong in his faith and lives exactly what he believes, you don't see that often enough, in today's world.
   He just recently went to Peru, for one of the humanitarian projects, and I asked him when he got back, if he would send me photos or information about what he did. Mainly so we as a family, could share in his experience. Here is the article that he sent me. It made me feel grateful for all my many blessings, plus it also touched my heart to see such amazingly strong and faithful people.

Service and gratitude fueled recovery in quake-weary Peru

By Jason Swensen
Published: Saturday, Dec. 18, 2010


Church members in Pisco, Peru, and neighboring cities will tell you they've lived two distinct lives: before and then after Aug. 15, 2007. On that date a massive 8.0-magnitude quake devastated several cities in southern Peru, claiming hundreds of lives and thousands of homes.

Photo by Jason Swensen

Church Welfare Services worker Ty Johnson, far right, speaks with members Eduardo and Sonia Torres outside their new home in Chincha, Peru. The Torres' lost their 2-year-old daughter, Jessica, in the 2007 quake. Their home was also destroyed.

The quake remains a defining event for members here. They look back on the catastrophe with equal parts grief and gratitude. Grief for those who were lost. And gratitude for the many who enlisted faith, service, hard work, priesthood principles and Relief Society resourcefulness so others might endure and emerge, both physically and spiritually, from a monumental disaster.

"There are two big forces at work, external and internal. We have very little control over external forces such as tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, disasters, illness and pain. What really matters is the internal force. How do I respond to those disasters? "  ~ Leo Buscaglia

"There's no disaster that can't become a blessing, and no blessing that can't become a disaster"                  ~ Richard Bach

"Knowledge is going to make you stronger. Knowledge is going to let you control your life. Knowledge is going to give you the wisdom to teach their children. Knowledge is the thing that makes you smile in the face of disaster."  ~Avery Brooks

Monday, January 3, 2011

Childhood Memories

Well, Christmas has come and gone, and I wonder if our kids and grand-kids will have some more fond memories, safely tucked away in their minds and hearts from this year? I will remember this Christmas, as the one without Brad and Krystal with us.:( I will remember the excitement in Angie's eyes as we put up all the decorations. I will remember little Jenny looking at the decorated tree, shaking her head and saying NO, NO, and then snatching an ornament off the tree so fast, that we couldn't even catch her.
Yes, Christmas seems to hold more memories than most holidays. Since our decorations are always such a big deal to put up, it is even a bigger deal putting them away, so... we have them up at least till the middle of January. I really don't care, actually I like it! I must be a little kid at heart.


Memories of Childhood by Robert T. Birkinshaw

He's all dressed but his shoes.
He even pulled on his own socks.
It makes no difference
That they're inside out
And that the heel of the sock
Is on the top of his foot
Because he did it all by himself.

Patiently he sits,
Waiting for his mother to
Finish the dishes and tie his shoes.

Swinging his little legs back and forth
And trying to learn how to whistle
Help him pass the time.

But the sky is blue, and
There is a gentle breeze
Coming through the screen door
Which beckons him to come out to

"How long is a minute?" he asks,
His mother tells him to watch
The clock on the wall to see
The tiny second hand go in a circle.

He wanted to be sure to see, so
He climbed upon a chair and
Traced the movement with his finger.

"Christmas is the day that holds all time together."  ~ Alexander Smith

"Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time."    ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Charity never faileth

I was very grateful that I woke up this morning without a migraine. I am thankful that I felt well enough to go to church. Being able to attend church, really does recharge my spiritual batteries. Some weeks are harder than others, and last week was a tough one for me since I was sick a lot. When I am in pain, it is harder to read, study or pray like I would like to. Pain gets in a way of a lot of things. So today was great, and it felt good to be up and about. One of the teachers talked about Charity and how it blesses the lives of those who give it, and also to those that receive it. Here are a few notes from that lesson...

"I have in mind the charity that manifests itself when we are tolerant of others and lenient toward their actions, the kind of charity that forgives, the kind of charity that is patient.

I have in mind the charity that impels us to be sympathetic, compassionate, and merciful, not only in times of sickness and affliction and distress but also in times of weakness or error on the part of others.

There is a serious need for the charity that gives attention to those who are unnoticed, hope to those who are discouraged, aid to those who are afflicted. True charity is love in action. The need for charity is everywhere.

Needed is the charity which refuses to find satisfaction in hearing or in repeating the reports of misfortunes that come to others, unless by so doing, the unfortunate one may be benefited. The American educator and politician Horace Mann once said, “To pity distress is but human; to relieve it is godlike.”

In a hundred small ways, all of you wear the mantle of charity. Life is perfect for none of us. Rather than being judgmental and critical of each other, may we have the pure love of Christ for our fellow travelers in this journey through life. May we recognize that each one is doing her best to deal with the challenges which come her way, and may we strive to do our best to help out.

Charity has been defined as “the highest, noblest, strongest kind of love,”the “pure love of Christ … ; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with [her].”  ~ Thomas S. Monson

“If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”  ~ Mother Teresa

“This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.” Jesus Christ

"Every good act is charity. A man's true wealth hereafter is the good that he does in this world to his fellows."   ~Moliere

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Heart Prints

Today was beautiful, sunny ( yes sunny) and very cold. Jeff and I decided to do our DATE today, instead of tonight. I think he knew that I needed to get out of the house, it is just too quite and lonely around here. Lee went to basketball practice and like I mentioned before, Lauren left to head back to college last night, so we definitely trying to adjust, once again. I feel like some times in life, that is all we do ... ADJUST to our new baby, ADJUST to our new job, ADJUST our time, now that we are grandparents, and on and on. Yes, there always seems to be something that we have to ADJUST to, and some times, that isn't as easy as it looks.

I loved this poem tonight. It really sums up what life is like, when we take time out of our busy schedules to leave HEART PRINTS. While I was in a store today, the sales clerk asked me a question about something, and then one thing lead to another, she asked me for my Motivational Blog address, then she shared with me some of the struggles that she had been through. When I left, I felt better. I felt like I had made a new friend, and that is what I believe these HEART PRINTS are all about. Taking time out of our busy schedules, to stop and connect with someone, yes it makes a huge difference in your life when you do...try it sometime!
Go on, get out there and leave a few HEART PRINTS of your own this year.

By Author Unknown

Whatever our hands touch...we leave
fingerprints on.
On walls, on furniture, on door knobs,
dishes and books.
As we touch we leave our identity..
Oh please where ever I go today...
help me leave heart prints.
Heart prints of compassion,
understanding and love.
Heart prints of kindness and genuine concern.
May my heart touch a lonely neighbor...
or a runaway daughter...
or an anxious mother...
or perhaps a dear friend!
I shall go out today...
to leave heart prints...
and if some one should say...
"I felt your touch!
May that one sense YOUR LOVE
Touching them through ME!

"When  you find peace within yourself, you become the kind of person who can live at peace with others."  ~ Peace Pilgrim

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.'  ~Anne Frank

"I expect to pass through life but once.  If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again."  ~William Penn