Tuesday, May 26, 2009

My Eternal Family - Primary Theme

This year I was blessed to be called as the Secretary in the Primary. I am really enjoying it, to my surprise. I spent a few terrible months in a few out of control and extremely large nursery classes about 8 or 9 years ago. Although Junior Primary is spent participating in crowd control, it's still a fun environment. I love the women I am serving with. The stake has made it clear that they do not want any competition whatsoever. I can see why. The CTR 7's and 8's are really quiet and would get to go to class first, every single Sunday. They've been in school a couple of years and are better at self mastery. So as a Presidency, we wanted a sign for each class, then we could mix them up and excuse them quietly using the signs. I couldn't find anything at the distribution center that was the right size so I used a photo of our own. If you want them, here they are. They are 8x10s. Just print them in color on a glossy paper, trim, and adhere to 8.5x11 cardstock. Then have them laminated. They'll last you all year. The photo is by Tyler Vanderbeek - so if you share these, give credit please!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

A Child of Royal Birth!

I am a child of royal birth;
My Father is king of heaven and earth.
My spirit was born in the courts on high.
A child beloved, a princess am I.

I was nurtured there; I lived by His side
In a home where patience and love abide.
My Mother was there in that glorious place,
Blessing her children with queenly grace.

I grew to the stature that spirits grow;
I gained the knowledge I needed to know.
I was taught the truth and I knew the plan
That God and Christ laid out for man.

I was there when the stars of the morning sang.
My voice was heard when the heavens rang.
I was there to rejoice, to praise, and applaud
And I shouted for joy with the sons of God.

I waited my turn to came to earth.
Through the wonderful channel of human birth.
The curtains were closed and the past was gone.
On the future too, the curtains were drawn.

I came to earth and God willed it so-
With freedom to choose the path I should go.
I must search for the truth; I must serve and obey.
I must walk by faith or fall by the way.

Someday, I will go back; I will answer the call.
I'll return with my record to the Father of all.
The books will be opened and so will my heart,
And there will be rejoicing if I've done my part.

My Father the King with his infinite love
Will welcome me back to the mansions above.
The curtains will part, and eternity
In its light and glory will open to me.

This is one of my favorite poems written by Anna Johnson. The opening stanza is just so empowering to me. We had a great lesson Sunday in Relief Society about our Divine Nature and what it means to be a daughter of God. It was wonderful, and a lesson I needed to hear again as a reminder I guess because Saturday, on our way home from Missouri, I started thinking of what that means (not knowing it was what our lesson was on the next day). And I started singing songs from when I was a youth. The YW Camp song.."Walk Tall, You're A Daughter of God" and others. My husband asked me what I was doing and I told him I was singing to our daughter!

It's an amazing feeling and choice blessing to know that I will be raising..not only this daughter, but our son and other children to come as well. What an amazing blessing, and gift, and privilege it is to be a mother. I feel so blessed for this responsibility, and am so thankful I am able to be a Mother. And even more thankful that Heavenly Father has blessed us in such a way that has given me the opportunity to stay home and take care of my little family full time. I am really enjoying this pregnancy. Not having to work this time-a-round has given me more opportunities to sit and relax and enjoy the little movements inside.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


If you have a toddler, you need sidewalk chalk. The two go hand in hand, like diapers and newborns. Really, you can't have one without the other.

Or, better said, you really shouldn't have one without the other.


This is sidewalk chalk. It promises hours of entertainment and learning. It won't disappoint.


After careful consideration, Hannah selects just the right color to kick off the "chalking" fun.

This is how I get her to practice her penmanship. It's lots of fun. See?


This is her favorite letter. Obviously, "H" is for "Hannah." But don't be too impressed just yet, this is the only letter she writes.



"Hop Scotch" is also a must when "chalking." This is her new favorite game. It's right up there with hide and seek, running around the house screaming, and watching "The Twelve Dancing Princesses."


She loves it so much, she talks about "Hop Scotch" almost as much as she talks about "Dora The Explore-Her."

So you know it's a lot.


And look, if you have a dog, (preferably a stinker-dog, but any dog will do the trick) they too will be completely entertained by this invigorating activity.


No promises on the baby though. I think Dallin wanted to drill a hole in his head . . . being strapped in the stroller, bored out of his brains.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Finding Joy

“This is our one and only chance at life—here and now. The longer we live, the greater is our realization that it is brief. Opportunities come, and then they are gone. I believe that among the greatest lessons we are to learn in this short sojourn upon the earth are lessons that help us distinguish between what is important and what is not. I plead with you not to let those most important things pass you by as you plan for that illusive and nonexistent future when you will have time to do all that you want to do. Instead, find joy in the journey—now.” - Thomas S. Monson

Friday, May 8, 2009

Barren Awareness Day

Have you ever been single on Valentine's Day?

Think hard. Back to the days before you met your spouse, or significant other. (Some of you may be very lucky, and the only time you didn't have a Valentine was in Junior High, but the rest of us . . . well . . . I'm sure there were a few years without a Valentine . . . )

Do you remember how you felt? Seeing your friends blissfully in love, opening thoughtful gifts, reading gushy love letters and eating chocolate?

Valentine's day to the unattached person is known as "Single Awareness Day."

This Sunday is Mother's Day. For years, (and I mean years) I met this day with sadness and anger. For many, Mother's Day is a day you recognize your mother, or you are recognized as a mother. As a mother, you find joy in your children, and realize the only reason you have children is because you are a mother.

See, everything goes hand in hand.

For many women, this Sunday, Mother's Day, is a reminder that their oven is empty. To the childless woman, Mother's Day is known as "Barren Awareness Day."

I always dreaded going to church on Mother's Day. 364 days a year, no one notices that you come to church without children. On Mother's Day, it's like you arrive with a blinking neon sign that says "I'm not really a mother. But recognize me because I'm married."


Actually, what I really wanted my invisible neon sign to say is, "Please don't recognize me. It's GLARINGLY obvious I don't fit in. Thanks."

So year, after year, after year, after year, after year, after year, after year, after year, (yes, there were eight years of this awkwardness) I would arrive to church with a smile on my face, hiding the pain that cut so deeply.

I wanted to be a mother.

Did the Lord think I was unfit?

Why, then, was I not blessed with children?

I will never know the answers to these questions.

But, I do know this Sunday will mark the third anniversary of my mommyhood and absence of that obnoxious blinking neon sign.

Thank goodness for that.

Where am I going with this?

I'm not really sure.

If you're a mother, cherish your children and be grateful you have them.

If you're not a mother (yet) and you long to be one, channel your energy into loving your own mom. Your time will come. It may not be in this lifetime, but it will come.

If you know someone who is struggling to have children, be extra sensitive to them. Especially on Mother's Day.

Happy Mother's Day everyone!