Sunday, October 31, 2010

General Conference October 2010

As always General Conference in October was enlightening and again amazed me with how so many different speakers' chosen words can come together so well! I was especially interested in how often the "14 Fundamentals of Following the Prophet" came up. Our Conference weekend was filled with munchies and treats (veggie platters, fresh fruit, smoothies, and um...chocolate) and enjoying time in our jammies together as a family while we listened to our church leaders. I even lucked out and got to go to the Sunday morning session, along with a spirit-filled Music and the Spoken Word, with 3 of my young women!

Conference Saturday always starts out deliciously
with chewy bagels and tasty cream cheese from Rich's in Holladay

I was so proud of all three kids; they were extra reverent this time around, even Carson. I was particularly impressed by Wyatt - he watched all four sessions, even when his big sister and little brother chose to play during some of the talks he stuck around and took notes in his notebook. In his note-taking, mostly he just wrote words or short sentences he heard, but I thought it was a great first-step into really listening and striving to retain the messages from our holy prophets. Some of his notes were so cute, I couldn't resist snapping a picture of them:
Left side: "As he spake by the mouth of His holy prophets who have been since the world began."
Ride side: "Hawaii Temple / Every young man should go on a mission. / You are field our dig. / I've never been a leader. [Remember the talk where the speaker had quoted someone as saying, "I've never been a leader."?] / To all moms and dads."

Left Side: "God's work / Art of Body / God's Temple / And his sons for many years ' run faster / what means 'family'." Right Side: "A brother's truth and trust" [ I love that he did TRUTH as 'CHROOTH' and TRUST as 'CHRUST' ]

Another page I didn't photograph says:
"Take my hand / Lets go down the path / you can start down the path of God / We LISSIN and feel HAPPY NISS / We love the Lord"

To me, the words he chose to write down speak volumes about the sprouting of a mighty testimony. This sounds totally braggy, but I say this knowing we as his parents don't have as much [if anything] to do with it as the Holy Ghost and Wyatt's free agency, which in this case was used very wisely, but I can't help but mentioning how AWESOME and POWERFUL I think he will be as an elder in the church if he continues to make such righteous decisions as he is now at age six. I learn a great deal from my son everyday (someday soon I'll post about Smiles for Service) and am grateful for the opportunity to have a spirit so sweet and so 'filled-with-a-desire-to-do-good' in my home. I am truly blessed to be his mother and to be his sister in the gospel!

We also played a game as a family that proved to be a big hit, so I'm sure we'll do it again (chocolate is an amazing motivator). To keep the drowsiness at bay, everyone picked a word and each time they heard a speaker say their word, they got an M & M. Brett didn't have anyone fooled when he chose his word to be "THE"...
Halle, goin' for another M & M....
Here are the boys scribbling their notes

Friday, October 29, 2010

On a scale of 1-10, my day becomes a 20 when I see this on my doorstep waiting for me...

This brown and green box takes me by surprise,
These flowers take my breath away,

But it's what he writes in the note

that takes me back to how I felt

in the moment I first knew I loved him

and never wanted to know a day

without him in my life.

* * * * *
My darling, sweet, romantic husband:
although I wasn't expecting them,
coming from you this expression of love
is no surprise.
You are always quick to
share your love and thoughtfulness.
I truly do not deserve you.
Thank you for loving me the way you do -
"I te amo you siempre"!

Hope Sig1

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

how the west was won

i love that my kids have such far-reaching imaginations
and that they play so well together

silver friends

Last month we enjoyed an evening watching the game with our dear, dear friends, Troy & Chantelle Riches. It had been so long since we'd seen their "baby", only he's becoming less and less like a baby and more and more like a little boy! Jackson keeps growin' and isn't he the cutest?! We love this couple and their wonderful boys.

Hope Sig1

Monday, October 18, 2010

Friday, October 15, 2010

"behold, I have not required it of them, but it is a commandment of the Lord"

Some of us have questions in life we struggle to find answers to. Even questions in the gospel. I'm a believer that everyone owes it to themselves to do their homework, to study the scriptures and words of the prophet, and most of all to PRAY - everyone owes it to themselves to form opinions and know where they stand. Yet there are some areas we mere mortals find to be gray - that's when I have to remind myself that thankfully the Lord has no gray areas. He draws a firm line between black and white. When I have difficulty finding that line, those issues then become "backburner" issues. Issues I'm willing to put on the backburner and wait to receive answers to, because not knowing the answer is not enough to rock my faith or testimony of my Savior Jesus Christ and of His restored gospel. These are the issues I'll ask my Maker about face to face...who knows? Maybe I won't even have to ask...maybe I'll get to the other side and some knowledge or memory might be restored to me and I'll think, "Silly me, of course that's 'why' makes total sense now..." Gratefully, I don't have many issues that need to rest on that backburner - most questions I have are answered precisely and clearly. The Lord is wonderful like that...that stuff we absolutely need to know, we get to know, as long as we do our part.
In the hearts of many of our brothers and sisters, there seems to be a controversy surrounding a talk given by an apostle of the Lord at the recent General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I was lucky enough to be present when President Boyd K. Packer gave this address, and let me tell you, being there in person I will witness 'til the day I die that there was the Spirit of the Lord in that room and that love, yes LOVE, was there. As he spoke, you could literally feel the love and compassion he has for all of God's children. However, I realize not everyone is feeling that love, and since I do not qualify myself as someone who has the right to offer my opinion on this subject (other than to say I agree with President Packer's talk and wholeheartedly offer my support of it), I did come across a blog post from a fellow member of the church who is striving to overcome feelings of same-sex attraction. My heart goes out to this brother, who should be admired for his honesty and faithful ability to see beyond himself, recognizing that the Lord's plan truly is the Plan of Happiness and that trusting in his standards is the path to true peace. He has given permission for others to repost his words, so I want to include THIS LINK so that others might read the perspective that comes from someone who has a testimony of the gospel and has courageously acknowledged that in order to reach his full potential and receive all blessings that are promised to him, he can and must refrain from any thoughts or activity that goes against the Lord.
Our temptations might be different from his, but in all other ways we are the same. We're all imperfect people striving to do the right thing. Each of us has our demons, our vices, we're struggling to control and destroy. We are all held to the same standards - just because we as mortals are drawn to certain feelings, whatever they may be, does not mean we, as children of God with a divine inheritance, have the right to indulge in those feelings or desires. Resisting the "natural man" that is in all of us and eventually overcoming ourselves is what will refine us and help us reach our Divine Potential.
What this man says on his blog is not "gospel". He is not an authorized mouthpiece for the Lord nor is he an authorized representative of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. But I feel his point of view is eloquent, humble, and valuable. President Packer is not perfect. He is a man, a mortal. However, he is an apostle of the Lord, therefore whatever he or any other apostle says, those baptized members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints who have commited themselves to accept these men as men of God, should consider prayerfully and with a willing heart. If you have struggled to reconcile yourself with President Packer's words, I encourage you to read this man's perspective.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

makin' bank from the tooth fairy

See how loose Wyatt's tooth was? Literally hanging by a nasty thread for what seemed like forever! Finally I talked him into letting me yank it out (previously he'd run away if I even hinted at wanting to touch it). Before he let me try, however, he wanted to give it a go himself, twisting and pulling...

No luck. Guess we'll let Mom take over...
(with a little blood.)
Most of our pictures from this point on are fuzzy,
because if you know Wy, you know he can't sit still
if he's EXCITED about something!
"Wyatt's Mouth has a Vacancy for any
interested teeth desiring to move in..." Of course we had to call our grandmas and grandpas!
Here they are talking to Grandma K.
The ol' Tooth Fairy Doll
(the one *I* used when I was little!)
"I can't believe the Tooth Fairy only left one dollar!"
(Hmmm...unfortunately for Wyatt I heard the
First Tooth is the most valuable. It only goes
down from here, buddy...)

Monday, October 11, 2010

on cloud 9...the birthday cloud, that is.

This is the last year my oldest child's age will be a single-digit.
Somehow it seems significant, as if this is the last year before we begin something new together.
Even her gifts seemed "older" this year.
We gave her a jewelry box,

an electronic math game (she LOVES math and is always making up equations to test us on),

a marble game she loves to play with Grandma Dixie,
and an iPod Nano and iTunes gift card from her grandparents.
(Carson had a to take a turn rockin' out...)
She asked for a tishamingo cake, and then asked if she could decorate it herself. With M&Ms.
Can you tell by the look on her face that our singing was horrendous? Man, do I love this girl!!!!!

I love the silly expression on her face.
Birthdays are the BEST!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

hmmm...i wonder what would happen if...

Ever wonder what would happen if you keep pulling on the tape measure?
"Mom, it broke-ded. Sorry."
Hope Sig1

Friday, October 8, 2010

i'll never fully confess....

I may or may not have eaten 1/3 package of Oreo cookies today...


Last month brought the realization of a couple milestones.

One being the fact that Alison and I have been
best friends for 28 years.
I can't say that about too many people.


Brett, Al, Morgan: 3 of my favorite people ever

Another favorite person: Grandma

And the big milestone (the reason we drove to Vernal in the first place)
is the fact that my father has been on this earth for * 80 years *.
So of course we had to celebrate, but because it's DAD, we kept it low-key, just like he'd want it. A family potluck dinner with pie for dessert - because that's what Dad likes: Pie and Family.
For his birthday, everyone in the family submitted their favorite memories of Dad or what they like most about him. We put them in a book and presented at the dinner. Reading the entries brought tears and laughter - the cornerstones of a life thus far well-lived.

Danielle & Eliza
Kimball and "Harry Potter"

Halle (with a funny face) and Parker

Mark, Brett, Cassidy, & Kael
Fawn, Wendy, Paige, Calvin, & Natalie

Dad, Josh, Cal, & Carson
The day before the party, Nicky and Kye welcomed baby #2, sweet Liam.
I told her how thoughtful it was for her to time his birth so perfectly with my visit!
Halle loved the poop.
But not as much as holding him.

"The democracy will cease to exist when you TAKE AWAY from those who are willing to work AND GIVE to those who would not."

Thomas Jefferson