Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Sampler

Could it already be that time of week again?

Side note: Does anyone else feel like
there have been so many Halloween festivities
that it has already come and gone?
Just checkin'

Here's a quote (short and sweet) from
one of my heros:

“We get on our knees and we ask the Lord to help us live in obedience to His commandments. We get on our feet and resolve to be better people than we were when we knelt down. Our beliefs will govern our actions. God help us to be those who are not faithless, but believing!” (meeting, Burlington, Vermont, 14 Oct. 1998).

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Where did you get that shiner?

So much for posting daily...
which is actually a perfect lead into my last and final post for the week.

So as I look back to this week
my first thought is
"could I have done more?"
Heck yeah.
And could I beat myself up about it?
Oh yes.
(hence all the black eyes)

But my wise and wonderful friend Rachel made a good point
in a previous post:
There are times in my life where I have thought I could do more, but then I remember if I am
giving my all, then that is all that is required of me!

Exactly my point.

I am extremely grateful that I'm in a point in my life
where I am able to serve.
But it is sometimes challenging
and a bit of a juggling act
having little ones while trying to lend a hand.

But I believe
the Lord will recognize our situations
and know our true hearts' desires.

Good thing
"the Lord looketh on the heart"
and not our outward appearance.

So stop beating yourself up!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

I know you've all been waiting with great anticipation
as to what my days full of service
have been like.

Well let me tell you.

It didn't start out so swell.

I tried to get Andy to let me go to the DMV for him.
(He despises that place,
can't really say that I blame him)
But he insisted that he go,
mostly on account of a previous conversation
that I insisted on him going.
Didn't anticipate that one.

Instead of detailing all my heroic good deeds for the day
I thought I should share a bit of insight.

Service is a funny thing.
You can't really brag about the do goodin'
cause where does that get ya?

Stuck with the hypocrites.
(Matt 6:2)

Happy Serving!
(shh, quietly)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sunday Sampler

I was really hoping to have at least
a post in between Sundays.

Well no worries,
cause this week I'll posting daily.
I was asked to give a talk in church
about serving others in my daily interactions.
I thought I would blog about my experience
then read the excerpts from the posts.
There, and that's my talk.
Wish me luck.

So to kick things off I thought I would share a quote about...
Perhaps this will motivate one-and-all
to join me in this little journey.
Come along.

This quote is taken from a talk called
Finding Joy Through Loving Service
by Elder M. Russell Ballard

"I believe there is one simple but profound—even sublime—principle that encompasses the entirety of the gospel of Jesus Christ. If we wholeheartedly embrace this principle and make it the focus of our lives, it will purify and sanctify us so we can live once again in the presence of God.

The Savior spoke of this principle when He answered the Pharisee who asked, “Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

“Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

“This is the first and great commandment.

“And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:36–40).

It is only when we love God and Christ with all of our hearts, souls, and minds that we are able to share this love with our neighbors through acts of kindness and service—the way that the Savior would love and serve all of us if He were among us today.

The love the Savior described is an active love. It is not manifested through large and heroic deeds but rather through simple acts of kindness and service."

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sunday Sampler

I was reminded today of a talk given in the most recent Relief Society General Meeting.
It was given by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf entitled:

A while ago I was walking through a beautiful garden with my wife and daughter. I marveled at the glory and beauty of God’s creation. And then I noticed, among all the glorious blooms, the tiniest flower. I knew the name of this flower because since I was a child I have had a tender connection to it. The flower is called forget-me-not.

He then gave 5 things we should be wise not to forget. The most helpful for me was the third.

Third, forget not to be happy now.

In the beloved children’s story Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the mysterious candy maker Willy Wonka hides a golden ticket in five of his candy bars and announces that whoever finds one of the tickets wins a tour of his factory and a lifetime supply of chocolate.

Written on each golden ticket is this message: “Greetings to you, the lucky finder of this Golden Ticket … ! Tremendous things are in store for you! Many wonderful surprises await you! … Mystic and marvelous surprises … will … delight, … astonish, and perplex you.”3

In this classic children’s story, people all over the world desperately yearn to find a golden ticket. Some feel that their entire future happiness depends on whether or not a golden ticket falls into their hands. In their anxiousness, people begin to forget the simple joy they used to find in a candy bar. The candy bar itself becomes an utter disappointment if it does not contain a golden ticket.

So many people today are waiting for their own golden ticket—the ticket that they believe holds the key to the happiness they have always dreamed about. For some, the golden ticket may be a perfect marriage; for others, a magazine-cover home or perhaps freedom from stress or worry.

There is nothing wrong with righteous yearnings—we hope and seek after things that are “virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy.”4 The problem comes when we put our happiness on hold as we wait for some future event—our golden ticket—to appear.

One woman wanted more than anything else to marry a righteous priesthood holder in the temple and be a mother and a wife. She had dreamed about this all her life, and oh, what a wonderful mother and loving wife she would be. Her home would be filled with loving-kindness. Never a bitter word would be spoken. The food would never burn. And her children, instead of hanging out with their friends, would prefer to spend their evenings and weekends with Mom and Dad.

This was her golden ticket. It was the one thing upon which she felt her whole existence depended. It was the one thing in all the world for which she most desperately yearned.

But it never happened. And, as the years went on, she became more and more withdrawn, bitter, and even angry. She could not understand why God would not grant her this righteous desire.

She worked as an elementary school teacher, and being around children all day long simply reminded her that her golden ticket had never appeared. As the years passed she became more disappointed and withdrawn. People didn’t like being around her and avoided her whenever they could. She even took her frustration out on the children at school. She found herself losing her temper, and she swung between fits of anger and desperate loneliness.

The tragedy of this story is that this dear woman, in all her disappointment about her golden ticket, failed to notice the blessings shedid have. She did not have children in her home, but she was surrounded by them in her classroom. She was not blessed with a family, but the Lord had given her an opportunity few people have—the chance to influence for good the lives of hundreds of children and families as a teacher.

The lesson here is that if we spend our days waiting for fabulous roses, we could miss the beauty and wonder of the tiny forget-me-nots that are all around us.

This is not to say that we should abandon hope or temper our goals. Never stop striving for the best that is within you. Never stop hoping for all of the righteous desires of your heart. But don’t close your eyes and hearts to the simple and elegant beauties of each day’s ordinary moments that make up a rich, well-lived life.

The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments. They are the ones who, thread by daily thread, weave a tapestry of gratitude and wonder throughout their lives. These are they who are truly happy.

happy sunday!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

a spooky tale

Once a upon a time
in a far off land
4 kids went to visit a pumpkin patch
in hopes of finding...
the greatest pumpkin ever!

they searched on a wagon

through funny (but sure cute) looking holes

on a tractor

and even in a house made up of pumpkins.

they searched high and low (especially while a super mom pulled)

even amongst the biggest pumpkins.

Would our kids ever find that perfect pumpkin!?!

Heck Yeah!
but what happened to the 4th kid?
(see, told ya it was spooky!)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday Sampler

first backstory:
I love alliterations.
I don't know why.
Just do.
Especially when it comes to days of the week.
For instance:
Taco Tuesday or No-T.V.-Tuesday (my attempt at limiting tube time-quite
successful I might add).
And now I bring you: sunday sampler

second backstory:
I've been wanting to add a little more
depth or spirituality to our blog,
since our faith is a huge part of our little family.

So this is my solution,
to share a spiritual thought or insight
every Sunday.**

Here goes:
Last Sunday was our church's general conference.
This is where we listen to our dear prophet, 12 apostles and other leaders.
This is taken from a talk given by Ian Arden of the seventy entitled:

A Time to Prepare:

Time is never for sale; time is a commodity that cannot, try as you may, be bought at any store for any price. Yet when time is wisely used, its value is immeasurable. On any given day we are all allocated, without cost, the same number of minutes and hours to use, and we soon learn, as the familiar hymn so carefully teaches, “Time flies on wings of lightning; we cannot call it back” (“Improve the Shining Moments,” Hymns,no. 226). What time we have we must use wisely. President Brigham Young said, “We are all indebted to God for the ability to use time to advantage, and he will require of us a strict account of [its] disposition” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young [1997], 286).

**i'm not saying spirituality only belongs on Sundays,
this is just for me, trying to stay organized and committed.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

A little dirty story...

A couple of weeks ago,
I found this perfectly clean white shirt in Audrey's drawer.
To my delight it still fit.

As fate would have it,
that very same day
the kids discovered...


Saturday, October 1, 2011


A few weeks ago we decided to take the kids to disneyland on a Friday evening.
In my haste of getting ready, I neglected to bring the camera.
So the only picture we came away with was this one.

In California Adventure you can go to the 'animation academy'
and learn to draw just like a disney artist.
I think Andy did a pretty good job...don't you think?
No wonder they pay him the big bucks!?!

Just teasin'

I think Grace may have a bright future as an artist...
just like her daddy.