Wednesday, July 31, 2013

It was a very good day!

 Today was a great day. It started out with me teaching the 2nd Day of Christmas at the shop. I just loved teaching, and especially teaching Christmas ideas! It doesn't get much better than that. All the ladies there are so amazing! Each one has different talents, different successes, lives and heartaches. Each one comes, and for a few minutes we all have something in common, we are learning something ...a talent that makes us happy, and usually one that we can share with those around us. Yes, that is why having something to do that  you love, can make all the difference in the world
  Then for lunch a dear friend came over with her Mother. I had met her Mother before, but we really didn't know each other real well. We have something in common though, she too is a Cancer Survivor! As I listened to her story...I was so amazed at her courage and faith. I shouldn't have been amazed, because I have known her daughter for years and she is simply one of the finest young women I know. She is a great example to me. So today I realized like the old saying goes "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree " and I mean that in the most positively way possible! :)
  As her Mom and I talked, I realized that there is something about having had some of the same struggles, experiences, illnesses and etc, with others... that make you more compassionate in that particular area. That is why I think it is vital for all of us to share our stories, our experiences and our faith. So maybe, just maybe it will help another...who is having to travel down that very same road. There is great comfort in knowing you are not the only one...yes, great comfort in that.
  Another thing I have noticed throughout my life is... that when you have a terrible tragedy, illness, death, loss in your life, that it is ok to mention God. When most times in the world, people don't mention Him for fear of what Others might think or judge you by. But those who have had these very terrible troubles in their lives, know that it is truly only through God and His Son Jesus Christ, that they had the courage and strength to over come all of their trials. With that personal knowledge comes a great strength and a PEACE, that the world can't even come close to offering.
How grateful I am for that relationship with them, I do not take that lightly and really do try to share my story every day of my life. If I help just one person, who feels so discouraged or alone, if I can help share their load or pain...then everything I have gone through, will have been worth it.
  Life's lessons, yes they can be hard very hard, but that is exactly what makes us who we are...if we choose to learn and grow from it!
  Yes it was a very good day!
  Good night dear friends!
... Jacobs, Breast Cancer Survivor - Quotes & Inspiration - Perspective - perspective quotes

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Gossip or True Concern?

Loved this article by Jason Wright. A lot of good healthy advice for body and soul!

Kason and Jason Wright on a recent Sunday afternoon. (Kodi Wright Photographer)

 Wright Words: I’m not dying — I’m just skinny!
The questions started a year ago. “Are you sick? Are you dying? Are you well? Are you losing weight?”
The answers were no, no, no and yes. I explained with building frustration that I was simply losing some of the pounds I’d found over the years in fast-food bags, ice cream cartons and by visiting the Milky Way with my friends, The 3 Musketeers.
By the time I hit my wedding-day weight of 160 pounds — a loss of 46 pounds from my all-time high — hardly a day passed without someone asking about my health.                           
The questions started a year ago. “Are you sick? Are you dying? Are you well? Are you losing weight?”
The answers were no, no, no and yes. I explained with building frustration that I was simply losing some of the pounds I’d found over the years in fast-food bags, ice cream cartons and by visiting the Milky Way with my friends, The 3 Musketeers.
By the time I hit my wedding-day weight of 160 pounds — a loss of 46 pounds from my all-time high — hardly a day passed without someone asking about my health.
Because my father died of cancer at a relatively young age of 50, my well-meaning mother launched a full-scale campaign to get me into the doctor to make sure nothing was seriously wrong. I gave in just before she started running costly television commercials and online banner ads.
I made an appointment with the wonderful Dr. Regina Bray of Fairfax Family Practice in Fairfax, Va. Over the course of our visits, she checked me for everything imaginable. She tested my blood, kidneys and bones. We discussed exercise, family history, career, stress and diet.
She introduced me to a new term: sleep hygiene. It’s the promotion of better sleep habits by going to bed and rising at a consistent time, avoiding the use of phones, laptops and television in bed, and even resisting the urge to read a good book while you drift off. I pledged to do better with all of the above.
Dr. Bray also asked me to keep a food diary and record everything I ate. Because I wanted to be a good patient, and because my mother couldn’t fly the airplane banner over my home forever, I agreed to keep studious logs of every single thing I ate or drank on seven random, non-consecutive days. Meanwhile, my weight remained steady between 158 and 165 pounds.
What was the doctor’s first reaction on my next visit? “Mr. Wright, are you aware that gummy bears are not on the food pyramid?”
After all the tests and questionnaires, I was finally given a clean bill of health last week on my final visit with Dr. Bray before she takes a new job in the Midwest. With a smile and the kind concern of a good doctor, she looked at me and said, “I feel pretty confident I can give you my blessing. You’re not dying.” She paused and laughed, “Not today, anyway.”
We shook hands, I wished her well on her new adventure and we said goodbye. Then, as soon as I stepped off the elevator, I called my mother. “Hey Mom, guess who’s not dying? This guy!”
As I made the 70-mile journey home, I thought about all the people who’d wondered both privately and aloud about my health. I considered their bold assumptions and how I’d lost patience with the constant queries.
Friends, neighbors and church pals had all assumed the very worst. Or was I the one making assumptions?
I'd chosen to imagine that every comment, question and furrowed brow must have come from Gossipy Curiosityville. I didn't permit myself to ponder, "What if they're all just concerned? What if everyone who stops me on the street or at the mall is genuinely worried? What a blessing!"
All these months passed with me assuming that everyone else was assuming the very worst. Whew, that's a lot of assumption! Isn't there an easier way to live?
What if I'd accepted that folks were asking out of sincere concern? What if I gave them the benefit of the doubt and chose to believe they had the best of intentions?
After all, they didn't create my frustration through action; I caused it from reaction.
With my mother satisfied and my doctor ordering me to avoid all doctor's offices for 12 months, I'll make a new pledge. I'll try harder to always assume the best.
So next time you ask if I’m all right, I’ll thank you for checking on me and answer with a patient smile. “I’m not dying — I'm just skinny.”
You can read more of Jason's articles here:

Monday, July 29, 2013

Teenage Hero... and inspiring true story!

   Teenager loses a friend, saves a life and learns a lot about himself.

 Angel Fernandez poses for a photo as he talks Monday, July 22, 2013, about being honored by West Jordan City with a 'lifesaving award' for saving a 4-year-old from drowning. (Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)
        
Angel's best friend was killed in October while walking to school.
Edwin Cardoso, 14, was crossing 600 North on his way to West High when he was struck by a utility truck. Angel, 15, said he saw Edwin that morning and had walked with him briefly before being picked up. He offered Edwin a ride, too, but his friend preferred to walk.
"He walked everywhere," Angel said. "It wasn't just school. If you asked him for a ride he would say 'No' and would just walk. … He loved doing it."
Angel was in class when he was called to the school counselor's office three or four hours later and was asked if he had heard what happened. He had no idea what they were talking about.
Then they told him.
"The first thing that went through my head was, 'What type of person would not see a kid walking across the street?' So when I went through in my mind I kept asking, 'What hit him? Was it someone who was texting and driving? Was it a drunk driver?' No. It was just a 19-year-old kid."
He first went to see Edwin's mother, then to the place where his friend was hit.
"It was extremely hard for me," he said. "It was hard because I felt like I could have done something to stop it. I thought through it plenty of times. I still think through it. I think, 'What if he had said yes (to the ride)?' He would still be here."
Edwin was pretty quiet, but was also energetic and always knew what to say and do in a situation. Angel still misses his "randomness" and the way he could always make him laugh with a sporadic text.
He said he came to grips with Edwin's death. But not long after, he started wondering when something good would happen to him after such a devastating loss.
A day to swim
On June 19, Angel went to swim at the Willow Cove Apartments, 9300 S. Redwood Road, at the invitation of his aunt, who lives at the complex. A woman with a young son let him into the pool area. Later, Angel and the son were both in the pool, both swatting at the same pesky bee.
Angel was swimming in the deep end of the pool when he saw an empty flotation device. It looked familiar and he was trying to remember which child he had seen using it when a girl pointed out something on the bottom of the pool.
He immediately dove down, picked the boy up and brought him to the surface. He said several years as a Boy Scout helped him know what to do.
"I've been trained for this," Angel said, adding that he also tried to help the mother perform CPR. "(The boy) was small. He wasn't breathing, he was stiff and he was actually extremely heavy.
"At first I was like, 'I just pulled a kid out of the water. I hope he's breathing.' And then once I laid him down, I stared at him for a little bit and noticed he wasn't breathing and then it finally came to me that he was really cold and heavy, so I was really scared."
He said that by the time firefighters and paramedics arrived, the boy was breathing again. Angel said he had repeatedly told the boy's mother that it would be OK. The woman thanked and hugged him and left with her child, who was transported to the hospital.
"I was in so much shock," Angel said. "I was so amazed I knew what to do. … I was kind of worried. I didn't know what to do or what to think because I didn't know if he was OK or not."


Eventually, his sister got in touch with the boy's mother who reported that the child was doing well.
"It was a giant relief," Angel said. "I was extremely happy."
Not long after, Angel's family learned that the teenager would be receiving a lifesaver award from the city of West Jordan. West Jordan Fire Chief Marc McElreath said the awards are given to civilians who intervene in situations and save someone.
Once the 4-year-old boy had been pulled from the pool, revived and was en route to the hospital, McElreath said the child's mother explained what Angel had done.
"I think Angel, being (15) years old, showed great composure and saw a situation that didn't look right and acted above his age level to actually go investigate and take action to pull the 4-year-old out of the pool, which is remarkable," the fire chief said, also praising the child's mother for her CPR efforts.
"It was a very nice experience for me," Angel said of receiving the award, "because I was very excited that I could finally meet the little kid. He was very interactive."
Lessons learned
He said the boy's mother spoke at the meeting when the award was given and said that she would always watch news reports about things like the near-drowning and wonder where the child's parent was.
Angel says sometimes things just happen.
"And sometimes it will have a good outcome like this or sometimes it will have a bad outcome, but it just all happens."
He said he's learned from Edwin's death, and from the life-saving day for the 4-year-old.
"It's just something that happened and I had to get used to it and I was hoping for something good to happen and it just came to me," Angel said.
And while being called a hero was weird at first, it still makes him smile. And it has him looking forward.
Losing Edwin didn't keep him from walking places.; it actually prompted him to walk more. He said he pays attention while driving and said he won't even listen to music when on the road.
This has all confirmed his plan to become a trauma doctor, because he sees the good doctors can do.
"I want to have that feeling of saving someone's life," he said. "I really like that feeling."
~ By , Deseret News

Sunday, July 28, 2013

It's all a matter of your Point of View!

The other day when my oldest granddaughter Angie did her 3 day Sleep Over, we were sitting at the table and she look right at me and said...." Nana, I hope when I grow up some day, that I can have body parts that come off and on like yours!  "I just smiled and thought to myself...everything is a matter of your Point of View" This sweet little girl never knew me any other way, she was only 3 years old when I had my mastectomy, and so she really doesn't know anything different.
Still I was grateful for both of the girls and how they just accept their Nana just as she is. And that attitude really helped me not to feel sorry for myself. Because they just want Nana to play and enjoy every moment with them.... it is a daily reminder for me ... to stay in the future and be grateful for every day... and I am!



You will never have this day with your children again ... #quote

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Reunions!

The Reunions that we had this summer were fun and a great connection to everyone.

 

 Soft yogurt for
everyone to celebrate my Birthday!

Hanging out with my nieces and family was fun!

Just as a joke to Aunt Lynn, my nieces and nephews took me to the biggest Candy store ever ...since I don't do a lot of sugar, they thought it was too fun!

Family Quote Pictures, Family Quote Images, Family Quote Tumblr Pictures, Family Quote Photos, Family Quote Facebook Pictures

 

Happy Date Night!

Thirty one years and still counting! Got to go to Port Townsend with the kids yesterday, will write about it more tomorrow.
 But one fun thing was... we found an old Photo Booth, could you tell we were looking at the directions trying to figure it out? Fun though!
Good Night dear friends!
 

 

 
Marriage quote | Love Quotes Today

 
 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

10 tips on learning how to change yourself for the better!

I loved this article and especially this quote ...

“As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world – that is the myth of the atomic age – as in being able to remake ourselves.”

That is so true, it is important that we look inward when thinking of changing things. I love the 10 tips that Gandi gives, you can read the whole article.here:

"If you change yourself you will change your world. If you change how you think then you will change how you feel and what actions you take. And so the world around you will change. Not only because you are now viewing your environment through new lenses of thoughts and emotions but also because the change within can allow you to take action in ways you wouldn’t have – or maybe even have thought about – while stuck in your old thought patterns."

Gandhi's 10 Rules for Changing the World

1. Change yourself.
2. You are in control.
3. Forgive and let it go.
4. Without action you aren’t going anywhere.
5. Take care of this moment.
6. Everyone is human.
7. Persist.
8. See the good in people and help them.
9. Be congruent, be authentic, be your true self.
10. Continue to grow and evolve.

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems." --Mahatma Gandhi


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Well, it is Christmas in July!

Well, I have spent the last year preparing for this years 12 Days of Christmas with my work at the Quilt Shop. And today,I spent most of the day putting the finishing touches on my Day one Demo Project. I had the Christmas music playing in the air (which isn't that unusual :) and I was excited to be getting ready for my Christmas in July projects.
Years ago, I got this Hallmark Christmas Card from a dear friend. It is one of my favorites, it is true ...that to see, feel and experience Christmas through a child's eyes...is totally magical!
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So since it is late and I have been so busy with all my family around, I will leave you with this Christmas thought.
Good night dear friends!
Rissa: "thinking about your future husband?"   Me: "he's not my future husband." Rissa: "you never know, I can totally see it happening."  Well, I definitely wouldn't be complaining if it did.



Monday, July 22, 2013

My sweet little boy!

Since the girls were little I have had the opportunity to be close to them, since almost their birth. I have always felt bad that we only get to see our one and only grandson a couple times a year. I think of all the things my granddaughters and I have shared and have wished so hard that Kai and I could have the same experiences. On Friday night this little sweet guy came to his Nana and Poppa's, and we have had already got to have some of those fun experiences with him.


Tonight, I got to snuggle with him and read some books before he went to bed, I couldn't hardly believe that I was really holding my boy. Oh how much I love him. I pray throughout his life that he grows up and remembers that his Nana and Poppa love him and will always be here for him. Yes, we have been richly blessed these past few days.
Read Me A Story
 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Let the Reunion begin!!!!

It is late and I just got the girls down not too long ago and the dinner dishes done. Whew ...forgot what it feels like to cook for the masses again! But I am loving it! The cousins are hitting it off well, and Miss Audrey is  loving her Uncle Lee and Aunt Lauren. They had never met her yet.

The weather has been unbelievable so that makes life even better. All the kids ( from Boston and Idaho were thrilled to have to put on sweatshirts this morning! Yes, that is another reason why we love our Washington!! During dinner, I kept looking at everyone and thinking to myself. All my children are all together, what a blessing! I am going to be with a very grateful heart.
Good night dear friend!

Shopping with the guys!

Audrey likes when Nana talks to her! Too sweet!

First time meeting my beautiful niece Audrey!More Audrey #cute #photodump

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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Looking forward to tomorrow!

When the kids were little I used to pray for one day to myself. It seemed like life was so busy with 4 kids, and that I never had a minute to even stop and think. Still I could hardly wait to wake up each day... to see what fun and crazy things life would bring with this crew of mine.



Now here I am (some 18 years from the time this photo was taken), and I can hardly wait for tomorrow and Saturday to get here!  All my kids will fly home in the next two days. We haven't all been together for quiet awhile. Most of the kids haven't even personally met Miss Audrey yet.



"Everybody deserves somebody who makes them look forward to tomorrow!"

Photo: Our little ladies....thanks for the skirts Nana!

The girls are excited that their cousin Kai is coming for a visit!



Hope this sweet guy, is ready for his 3 red headed darling cousins...this should be fun!

 So I have to hurry and get to bed, so tomorrow can come! Good night dear friends!
family quoteBe Grateful, Be Thankful family quote life appreciate simple wisdom grateful thankful

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Motherhood is tougher than one might think!

I loved this article, because this Mom told the truth. Being a Mom is tough, but it is possible to change and grow and that is what this article is all about

Losing my temper: Utah's Young Mother of the Year confesses all
Stefan, Michelle, Mary and Gabriel Lehnardt. (Michelle Lehnardt)

Bring on the jokes. I know I'm in for it. And not just because I served cereal for dinner last night and forgot to pick up dance carpool, but because I, too, pictured someone much more spiffy and pulled together for Utah's Young Mother of the Year.


When I refused to read my little daughter the most boring book on her shelf last night, she scoffed, "And you're supposed to be mother of the year?!"
I'm in for it this year — oh, I'm in for it.
And not just because I forgot soccer treats or sent my kid to school with a lousy science poster, but because I, too, pictured someone much more spiffy and pulled together for Utah's Young Mother of the Year.
Let's make this clear — my closets and pantry are a mess, I hardly ever volunteer at school, and cereal and bananas stand in for dinner more often than I'd like to admit.
But I love my children with every particle of my soul and I passionately believe motherhood matters. I devote the best of my time, creativity, intelligence and energy to my family and I believe the rewards are greater than any career, award or accolades.
I am no better than the thousands of other young mothers in Utah — but I am proud to represent them this year. With the honor (chosen by American Mothers, Inc.) comes the obligation to open my mouth — to build up other mothers — and I think I can do that best by sharing my most embarrassing moment: The Corn Story.
For years, this tale carried a $2 (per person) penalty for the telling. And since my kids earn about $10 a year, the threat was enough to keep my ignominious corn story under wraps.
But I no longer find it shameful or humiliating. Time to come clean. And, no, I’m not paying $2 to each of you.
The summer after my fourth child was born, I was completely overwhelmed. With three little boys racing through the house, one little needy baby in my arms and my husband traveling nearly every week, I was a frazzled wreck. And I got into the habit of yelling. Too much. Too often. Out of control.
Even as a little girl, I knew I had a fiery temper. I remember watching the extraordinarily sweet singing leader at church and knowing I had a different set of DNA. Sweetness did not come easily to me. Courage and smarts, yes. But not sweetness. I envied and emulated my mild-tempered friends. My teachers taught kindness and I listened and did my best.
My best was enough for a long time. Until that summer.
Friday night: my husband gone on business, baby Xander crying and dinner on the stove. I was shucking corn in the kitchen, watching the boys on the back porch, while using my toe to bounce Xander’s little baby seat. My arms were full of corn to rinse in the sink when the boys began banging on the glass kitchen door. The door wasn’t locked, but their arms were full (of what? I forgot) as were mine. As their pounding increased, I feared the door would break and in a burst of anger I yelled and threw the corn on the counter. Hard. Seven or eight ears.
Do you know what fresh corn does when you slam it against a hard surface? You probably don’t because you’ve never lost it like I did that night. It explodes. The same force you see when kernels pop over heat, but wet and slimy and all over my kitchen.
Every surface was covered with sticky yellow bits of corn — counter, walls, stovetop, oven, floor, my arms and clothing, even poor baby Xander’s chubby tear-stained cheeks. I stared in horror at what I’d done, began to cry and called my best friend.
For hours we scrubbed the kitchen. Cornstarch serves as a substitute for glue in all kinds of fun crafts — and all that smashed corn was glued to my kitchen. We gave the kids cereal for dinner, laughed and cried and scrubbed and finally gave up, deciding I’d just have to tackle the job a bit at a time.
As I lay in bed that night, exhausted, one thought kept returning to my mind. The moment of decision. Because I can recall, even now, just a moment before when I had control — but I gave in to anger, threw the corn and created all kinds of work (and mortification) for myself.
Seven years later, when we sold the house, we were still finding bits of corn adhered to a drawer handle or corner of the cupboard.
I knew I had a problem. But I cried and justified and muddled through until school started in August and I went in the first week for an introductory meeting with my oldest child’s second-grade teacher. The kids had filled out a little “get to know me” page with their favorite foods, movies, books and questions such as “What makes you happy?” and “What makes you sad?”
Under the question “What scares you?” Ben had scribbled, “When my mom yells.”
That night I knelt beside my bed, pulled that crumpled paper out of my pocket and begged God for help. I wanted to be kinder, calmer and less scary. At the moment of decision, I wanted to make the right choice, not the angry one. I was deeply shamed.
Change takes time. I broke my resolve more times than I can count. But I kept praying, practicing calmness and kindness. And I changed.
My two youngest children will tell you I never yell. Not even when the water bottle spills across the kitchen counter — and ruins my laptop — or when my daughter and friends pull all the petals off the rose bushes for a fairy dance.
Oh, they’re wrong. I still yell here and there, especially at cars speeding down our street, but not often enough to remember or loud enough to scare them. I now consider myself extraordinarily patient; it takes a whole lot to ruffle my feathers.
Please understand: I share this not to brag but to encourage. We can change. We can turn our weaknesses into strengths. We are not victims of our DNA or personality type. I often hear people say things like, “She never said an unkind word in her life,” or “She never complained,” or “He always had a positive attitude.” If I’m feeling grumpy, I think, “Well, I’ve already blown that.” I need to hear stories about people who struggled, yet improved.
Maybe, for someone out there, it will be more encouraging to hear, “She was a stressed-out, angry yelling mom but she changed and got better and much happier.” Because we are made for happiness.
As for Ben — what scares him now? Spiders. Big, fat spiders.
He’ll have to get over that on his own.
I found this story here:

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Do we ever say these questions to ourselves?

 

Well, I just arrived home today...feels good to be back. I started right away emptying my suitcases, cleaning out the fridge, working in the garbage, laundry and then Jeff and I went and got groceries then watered the flowers...yes...I am tired...so it must me I am home!  
I was thrilled to read Jason Wrights new column this week. I think he is an incredible writer and what he talked about today was certainly motivational...so that is what I am posting for you tonight! Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Good night dear friends!

Have you asked yourself, "Am I loved? Am I beautiful? Am I divine?"
Last week I spoke to one of my favorite groups — Alpha Delta Kappa. ADK is an international honorary organization for women educators. They have chapters in all 50 states plus Puerto Rico, Australia, Canada, Jamaica and Mexico.
I’ve addressed their local chapters, state and regional events and now their international convention in Washington, D.C. This is an inspiring group of women that does a lifetime of good each day before I’ve polished off my first bowl of Lucky Charms.
I agreed in principle to this latest speaking gig — giving the keynote at their international convention — one year ago. I signed a contract and began putting together rough notes and ideas 11 months back. Six months ago, I got more serious and started sorting through stories to share and possible object lessons. With a week to go, I finalized my plans for the 45-minute presentation.
Then, in the car on the way to the venue, everything changed.
I was sitting in the backseat with my headphones on and my laptop open as my wife and oldest daughter rode up front and chatted and giggled about mother-daughter things. I enjoyed the final chance to review my plan for the evening and an unusual object lesson I was excited to unveil for the first time in front of the crowd of more than 1,500 teachers.
As we cruised from Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley into the nation’s capital, my mind’s eye saw a sad woman sitting in the audience with three haunting questions that would not go away:
“Am I loved? Am I beautiful? Am I divine?”
I shook my head and tried to rattle the nameless face out like a stubborn pebble in a tennis shoe. "That’s not my message," I thought. "My program is about following dreams. It’s about finding your niche and relying on others to make your passion a reality."
Moments later I again heard the silent worry, the kind that follows us like shadows that will not go to bed with the sun.
“Am I loved? Am I beautiful? Am I divine?”
Virginia’s lush green hills rolled by, but the questions did not fade over my shoulder.
I’m not ashamed to admit in time, tears gathered in my eyes as I considered that someone — a teacher, mother, wife, sister — might be hiding in the audience that day with those three questions burning a bridge between their hearts and minds.
I scrolled back through my presentation with fresh vision. By the time I was done with the virtual red pen, I’d slice and diced half of my material and completely reworked the ending. I asked myself, "If there is even just one woman waiting for me in the audience who feels this way, don’t I owe it to her to answer these questions?"
Two hours later, I launched my presentation with the admission that something had happened to me — that I felt the need to deviate from months of preparation to share a message that might only apply to a handful in the room. Or, perhaps, it might apply to just one.
Are you loved?
“You are!” I nearly shouted. There are people everywhere who care for you, who believe in you and rely on you. They may not say it often enough, but they do love you.
Are you beautiful?
“You are!” You’re a creation of a loving Heavenly Father. No matter what magazines or blogs tell you, they do not own a copyright on the definition of beauty. Beauty is about the contents of the package, not the wrapping. You deserve to know this and to never forget it.
Are you divine?
“Of course you are!” Like all of us, you were created in his image. If God painted a canvas, it would be divine. If he sculpted a piece of art, it would be divine. If he created a woman, she would be divine! God has eternal and divine consequence, so wouldn’t his children?
After posing and answering these fundamental questions, with a lump in my throat, I stated the obvious. “Some in this room feel broken. Marriages have ended in pain, spouses and children have died, sickness has hit, jobs have been lost and homes have been taken.”
Do those facts change how much heaven loves us? Jesus Christ suffered all pain so ours could be healed. Whether physical, emotional or spiritual, there is healing available to us if we’ll simply knock.
Surely some in the audience then, and some reading this column now, wonder, “Can I overcome this? Am I capable enough? Am I talented enough?”
To them I exclaimed, “Yes, you are!” And to you I say the same.
You cannot do it alone; you’ll certainly need some help. It may come from friends, family, professionals, neighbors or strangers. You might see your angels, you might not. But they are waiting to assist you through life's trials, and more importantly, so is the one who sent the trials in the first place.
“Am I loved? Am I beautiful? Am I divine?”
Yes, you are! Now go tell a friend they are, too.
You can read more of Jason's words here:
 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Packing my bags!

Well, tonight I packed up, and tomorrow I leave my Home away from Home! Shirley's home is beautiful and I even have my own room! Doesn't get much better than!



I was able to spend time with so many of my nieces and nephews and even my great nieces and nephews. 2 Family Reunions, a Mission Farewell, made two new friends, got to see and talk to some dear friends that live here... and Shirley and I got to spend both of our Birthdays together! So it was a really fun trip. But as always, I can hardly wait to get back home and see Jeff and my little Granddaughters and family!
This goodbye isn't going to be as hard as usual, because we already have a trip planned together in September. Plus, when I get home...in 3 days after that my whole family is flying home. We will all be together for the first time in a long time. I can hardly wait to hold and play with my little Kai boy! So I am excited to head home and get ready for them!

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I felt blessed this trip, to be able to attend so many wonderful events and experiences with my family and friends. I thank my Heavenly Father for the chance to get up every morning and have yet...another day! I feel that I just can't miss being with my family and friends as much as I possibly can. For those dear friends that I missed seeing this visit, please know that I love and miss you.
Need to head to bed,  good night dear friends!

Wall Art Sticker Quote 'The best thing about Memories is making them...' - WA076X - LARGE / BLACK by Createworks, http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B006F5T226/ref=cm_sw_r_pi_dp_IwqNqb1BD0N30From The Facebook Page: Inspirational, Motivational & Moral Stories For All




































































































































 

 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Gratitude

This morning I got up early to drive to my brother's house (about an hour away). I went to see and hear his oldest son, speak at church. He has just been called to serve a full time mission for our church to Japan. I was so impressed with his talk. He has grown into an amazing young man. I was so grateful that I had the chance to come and tell him goodbye, and to tell him one more time how proud I am of him. I loved also spending time with his brother and sisters also. This nephew and his oldest sister were only 5 and 3 years old when my Mom ( their Grandmother )  passed away. I have always felt like I needed to try and fill that void for them and so...I have tried to be the BEST AUNT LYNN . ever! I am crazy about them. I always have a hard time saying good bye to them. But I have an incredible amount of gratitude for this next generation, they are quite impressive!
When we got back, we then went over to Shirley's kids house to celebrate her Birthday and my Birthday. It was so much fun to spend it with them and now their little kids. As an Aunt, I have been truly blessed to have the love and association with so many great kids.
I miss my grandchildren, but in many ways feel like these little ones are my grandkids too! So tonight I just feel a lot of Gratitude for my family here and that I have the opportunity to visit them often.
Need to head to bed, so good night dear friends!
P.S. I also made a new friend today...that makes me happy! To meet and become friends with this new person in my life, just makes me feel even more grateful! Yes, I am blessed!

Gratitude quote via Carol's Country Sunshine on FacebookGratitude QuotesGirlfriendology gratitude quote cozy bed

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Family Reunion

Today was our family reunion and it was fun to see some of my cousins that I hadn't see in years. It was also fun to meet their children. Man how time flies. Some of them it had been 20 some years since we have seen each other! I guess at our age, we should be grateful that we even recognized each other :) I sure wish all my family could have been there with me, this made me really miss them! Need to head to bed, good night dear friends!
-Dieter F. UchtdorfFamilies are like branches on a tree. We grow in different directions yet our roots remain as one.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Fun day!

Today we were able to go out with a friend of mine, that I have never personally met. She was diagnosed with Cancer a couple of years ago ( I think it was ), and she is one of Shirley's dearest friends and so that is how we got connected. Her life is busy and when I come into town, we are usually busy too ...so up until now, we had only communicated through Shirley and cards (that I sent her). I was amazed at her courage from the very beginning, and I soon realized that her courage came from her Faith.
How fun it was to meet her and  finally get to see how she is doing,.to hear more about how life is going for her now...cancer free! Yes, she is a survivor and oh how blessed I felt today, to finally meet her. She is as beautiful on the inside and she is on the outside. What a wonderful lunch it was, I loved hearing more about her journey. I have to admit that even though Cancer was one of the worst things I have had to go through, the people I have met on this journey have been amazing and great teachers to me.
We spent the rest of the day shopping for swimsuits....for Hawaii. That is not usually a fun thing to do, but when you have a sister (sister in law) with you, it was too fun! Even though I had a bit of a struggle noticing how deformed my chest wall looks in a suit, by the time we got done ... we were laughing so hard, it didn't seem to worry me as much. Clothes hide a lot of things especially if you have had surgery from cancer. Still I was grateful to be healthy and to have my dear Shirley by my side. It was a fun day!

How Pru.Fune is this quote.  Never settle for being normal because the world tells you that is the role you are meant to play.  SPEAK PLAY LAUGH out loud!
Life

 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

LIving with Contentment!

Today was my 54th Birthday, thank you for all the sweet B-day wishes I got!  I am tired, just got home and need to head to bed. Then this story caught my eye on contentment. I think that is one thing that I could truly say about my life today, right now... I am content. I need to remember that more often and to count the blessings I have more often. How grateful I am that I got another year with my best friend and husband, with my family and dear friends. Yes, my Birthday and my year last year was a great one, and I hope this coming year...only gets better!
Good night dear friends!

Couple married for 80 years, longest in America!






FAIRFIELD, Conn. — John and Ann Betar eloped in 1932, and now, 80 years later, they are still happily married.
John, 101, and Ann, 97, of Fairfield, Conn., were named the longest-married couple in the United States by the faith group Worldwide Marriage Encounter according to the New York Daily News.
"Here you have a couple who made a commitment, and they stuck to it," Worldwide Marriage Encounter spokesperson Dick Baumbach said. John and Ann were selected out of 297 nominations collected between October 2012 and January 2013. While there may be longer marriages that were not nominated, Baumbach explained that each year the group encourages more submissions.
According to a frequently updated Wikipedia site, John and Ann hold the 16th place for the longest marriage. According to the site, Karam Chand and Kartari Chand from the United Kingdom, hold the No. 1 spot, with 87 years of marriage.
As for the Betars, they met as children, but Ann's parents had arranged for her to marry another man, one who was 20 years older than her. Although Ann was not excited about the arrangement, John said it took some time to convince her that he was the right one.
"I fell for her right away," John told ABC News. "I used to have a Ford Roaster and I used to pick her and her friends and drive them to high school. Gradually she liked me and we got together."
For Ann, who was only 17 years old at the time, it was a big decision to choose John and go against her parents' will.
"At 17, you wonder if you're making the right choices," she told ABC News. "I had grown up with him and we had good times together and we knew each other very well. And it's turned out to be 80 years. ... God seems to have been with us. And we've been very fortunate and wonderful."
So on Nov. 25, 1932, the young couple elopled to Harrison, N.Y., as that was as far as their money would take them.
"They were going against all odds," Renee Betar, the couple's daughter, said.
Now with five children, 14 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren, Ann and John continue to show their love to each other.
"Your love grows, you know," Ann Betar said in a video interview. "Grown in very good direction for the two of us."
As a couple, John and Ann enjoy reading together, cooking and maintaining a moderate diet. According to John, there's nothing too complicated because love and commitment have kept them together.
"We just live with contentment and don't live beyond our means," John Betar said. "Just go with the flow."
Both John and Ann expressed their gratitude for the chance to spend such a long time together.
"We are very fortunate. It can be repeated and repeated," Ann said in an interview with ABC News. "It is unconditional love and understanding. We have had that. We consider it a blessing."
Daughter Renee agreed, stating: "Their decision to marry reinforces the strength of their love and their determination to be together. It's no big deal being married 80 years when you're in love."
A photo of John and Ann has recently circulated on Facebook, celebrating their achievement. The picture has more than 13,000 comments, 21,000 shares and 619,000 likes.
Donna Aldridge commented, "Now that's how life should be! What a sweet picture — still holding hands. I love it!"

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Everything happens for a reason!

Well, dear friends I am back blogging, I am still on vacation but it is back to my turn to write. I knew my daughter in law would do a great job, just like my daughters have done. So grateful that they understand how important this blog is to me and how thankful I am for their examples of motivation and happiness.
It is late and I will write soon and let you know all that has been going on. For now, here is a sweet message from Jason Wright! Enjoy and good night dear friends!

                  
                         

WOODSTOCK, Va. — It was a hot, muggy Monday afternoon in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. The humid hours and minutes felt like fat dominos, too heavy to gather momentum and topple over onto one another. It was the kind of afternoon that just gives up and waits for dusk to arrive with a fan and an extra lemonade.
I stepped outside my office on Main Street in Woodstock for a thick walk to our small-town post office. It was time to clear my lousy head after punching through several lousy drafts of a lousy column that now sits in my digital trashcan.
I took the long way, despite the heat, and extended the stroll by several blocks. I watched cars and other pedestrians pass by, waved at a few strangers and wondered what I was missing.
Then, when I returned to my building — a quaint movie theater from another era — I met a remarkable woman who rewrote my afternoon, this very column, and maybe, just maybe, my outlook on life.
Betty Pelletier, 89, of Woodstock, Va., was sitting alone on a bench outside my office eating a snack when I sat down next to her to say, "Hello." I learned she was returning home from a doctor’s appointment and an errand at the opposite end of Main Street. She’d walked from one end of town to the other and back again.
I’d barely taken a seat when she said confidently, “Everything happens for a reason.”
During the early moments of our 90-minute visit, I convinced myself that spending the time with the sweet woman would be good for her. But by the time we said, "Goodbye," I realized it hadn’t been good for her — it had been good for me.
After the usual pleasantries, I learned that Pelletier moved to the area four years ago from Arlington, Va. The Florida native had been in northern Virginia for most of her adult life, working as a secretary and typist in Washington, D.C. Four years ago she moved to Woodstock to care for her former husband, a man she hadn’t associated with in years. “There was no one else,” she said. “And everyone deserves to be cared for.”
Sadly, soon after she uprooted and planted herself in town, the man developed Alzheimer’s and was checked into a long-term care facility. The arrangement was no longer necessary, but here she was to stay.
I turned to face her. “You know, Betty, not many people would do that.”
“Oh, I don’t know. Everything happens for a reason.”
Pelletier spoke fondly of the man who still lives, but because of illness does not know her. She talked of his career driving tour buses, including a longtime gig driving the legendary Smokey Robinson. The two men became friends, and though her former husband wouldn’t remember, she suspects Robinson would. The warm memory brought a smile to her face and mine.
My new friend shared with me the second love of her life and a long-distance relationship that survived the odds. Though he no longer lives, her memories of him are as crisp as the days they unfolded. They have two children she wishes she saw more often and two grandchildren she loves dearly.
Once, as she told a particular story, I interrupted her to clarify a point. "Well, if you'd just let me finish," she quipped.
Later during our conversation, two elderly women approached asking if we knew where a nearby beauty salon was located. My friend, not content to simply point and give directions, stood immediately and asked me to watch her things. “I’ll be right back.” She led the older of the two women by the arm, tenderly supporting her as they moved down the sidewalk. The side-by-side sight of the three women was almost poetic.
Pelletier returned five minutes later and picked up right where she’d left off.

We discussed a new bakery in town, her friends at the seniors’ center and how much the facility and the people mean to her. We talked about books, history and our shared experiences of falling down the stairs from the second floor to the first. “Just a sprain and a bruise,” she said with relief. “You?”
“I rode my plastic motorcycle down the stairs when I was 4.” I pointed to the scar on the back of my head and she stifled a laugh, but not a smile.
Soon my daughters drove by and pulled over to say hello to their dad and a stranger sitting on a bench. I asked, “Would you mind if my daughter took a picture?”
My beautiful pal laughed and her eyes widened. “Without lipstick?”
Because I know an 89-year-old woman on a fixed income with no car or family nearby has few options, I insisted on giving Pelletier my cellphone number, my wife’s number and my word that if she needed a ride to the doctor, the store or anywhere in between, we’d be there.
Before I left I asked this woman of a thousand stories if she would mind if I shared hers with my readers. After the predictable “no-one-wants-to read-about-me” response, she gave me three things she would want the world to know about a long life well lived.
“We should pray every morning.”
“We should live each day like it’s our last. You never know,” she paused to watch a car pass. “You just never know.”
“And last?” I wondered aloud.
"Like I said," she smiled. "Everything happens for a reason."
To read more of Jason's articles you can find them here:

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

What is Beauty

Recently, this video from Dustin Hoffman has been making its rounds on the internet. I have always really liked Dustin Hoffman, I think he plays such interesting, thought-provoking characters, and he seems like a genuinely good guy. This video makes me like him even more. I think he touches on something that we all have most likely struggled with, or have been faced with. 
In the early 80's Hoffman starred in a the movie "Tootsie" about a man who couldn't make it in show-business so he pretends to be a women to get a role in a soap opera. While preparing for the role, he learns first hand how hard it is for women, especially if we aren't the typical movie/magazine hollywood perception of beauty...and how unfortunate that is because we are all probably such beautiful people. My favorite thing that he says is "There's too many interesting women I have not had the experience to know in this life because I have been brainwashed." 
This is definitely something everyone should see and think about.
-Krystal

“Sometimes people are beautiful. Not in looks. Not in what they say. Just in what they are.” Mark Zusak

“That's always seemed so ridiculous to me, that people want to be around someone because they're pretty. It's like picking your breakfeast cereals based on color instead of taste.” John Green

“What you do, the way you think, makes you beautiful.” Scott Westerfeld

Monday, July 8, 2013

Demand More From Ourselves


A friend of mine posted this quote the other day, and I had to share it. We are so much more powerful and strong than we think. Sometimes, in life, it is so easy to just be content with our lives how they are and get to the point that we aren't progressing. Yes, life is good, but couldn't it be so much better? Couldn't pushing ourselves and branching out make life extraordinary?
I think so often we are governed by fear, fear to leave our comfort zone, fear of the unknown. I like how the quote says that not pushing ourselves and not struggling and suffering is a "numb existence" when instead we could be taking an "extraordinary trip." This is a concept that I have tried to live my life by, and am now even more motivated to continue pushing myself and exploring the awesome path that is just waiting for me.
 No one ever accomplished all of their dreams by playing it safe, and no one who has accomplished all of their dreams got there without some pain and roadblocks. We just have to "demand more from ourselves" and take the first step to live life truly to the fullest.
-Krystal