Monday, January 8, 2018

Grateful for Tender Mercies of the Lord


While I was taking down my Christmas tree I was watching or listening to movies and their music.
I often need a movie or music in the background to keep me going (if I'm not studying seminary lessons).

I started with Moana - it has some fun music.





I watched the most recent Beauty and the Beast.  Some of the music in these movies are just fun, and others have lyrics that inspire.  Great listening!





[Verse 1]
How does a moment last forever?
How can a story never die?
It is love we must hold onto

Never easy, but we try
Sometimes our happiness is captured
Somehow, our time and place stand still
Love lives on inside our hearts and always will
[Chorus]

Minutes turn to hours, days to years then gone
But when all else has been forgotten
Still our song lives on
[Verse 2]

Maybe some moments weren’t so perfect
Maybe some memories not so sweet
But we have to know some bad times
Or our lives are incomplete
Then when the shadows overtake us
Just when we feel all hope is gone
We’ll hear our song and know once more
Our love lives on
[Verse 3]

How does a moment last forever?
How does our happiness endure?
Through the darkest of our troubles
Love is beauty, love is pure
Love pays no mind to desolation
It flows like a river through the soul

Protects, persists, and perseveres
And makes us whole
[Chorus]

Minutes turn to hours, days to years then gone
But when all else has been forgotten
Still our song lives on
How does a moment last forever
When our song lives on

~ ~ ~



November and December are wonderful times of the year when we have holidays that help us remember the important things in life.    I feel blessed to have my darkest, most sorrowful moment (that of my husband passing away) be surrounded by these two holidays - Thanksgiving and Christmas - because it helps me, or almost makes me feel the love of God.

Still it is a solemn time of year for me and in the background of this wonderful time of year there is sorrow.  I am so grateful that even with that deep sorrow, there is still a great amount of joy - knowing that we have been promised to each other for eternity.  I do have much to look forward to. I know I sound wishy-washy but it really is a back and forth time of year for me.


With the mixed emotions I certainly had while taking the lights off my tree I heard something on Beauty and the Beast that pierced my heart.

It was while Belle and her father were in the dungeon with the beast, and Belle offered to stay there forever if the beast would let her father go free.





She was asking for a minute to say good-bye before her father was released and the beast didn't seem to think it was necessary.  Belle didn't give up, and replied;


"FOREVER CAN SPARE A MINUTE"



Wow!  I need to remember this!
Our time on earth is but a moment compared to our Heavenly Father's time - eternity.  So every suffering or sorrow we endure here on earth is but a minute to Him and we can endure it with His help.

In seminary we are studying the stories about Alma and Amulek (including, but not limited to Alma 14) and this quote, FOREVER CAN SPARE A MINUTE, is perfect - reminding us that any trial on earth, even all of our time on earth, is but a minute and we must continue in faith, with patience and hope of the blessings we will receive in eternity.









I was the one who had it all
I was the master of my fate
I never needed anybody in my life
I learned the truth too late
I'll never shake away the pain
I close my eyes but she's still there
I let her steal into my melancholy heart
It's more than I can bear
Now I know she'll never leave me
Even as she runs away
She will still torment me
Calm me, hurt me
Move me, come what may
Wasting in my lonely tower
Waiting by an open door
I'll fool myself, she'll walk right in
And be with me for evermore
I rage against the trials of love
I curse the fading of the light
Though she's already flown so far beyond my reach
She's never out of sight
Now I know she'll never leave me
Even as she fades from view
She will still inspire me
Be a part of everything I do
Wasting in my lonely tower
Waiting by an open door
I'll fool myself, she'll walk right in
And as the long, long nights begin
I'll think of all that might have been
Waiting here for evermore

~ ~ ~


Such a long post to say what I felt, and I'm not sure I've done it justice.  I'll just say - I am so grateful for tender mercies of the Lord to remind me of the important things in life and encourage me to move forward in faith.

Sometimes simple phrases in songs or movies can encourage and uplift and enlighten. They are a reminder to the heart, mind, and soul that all is or will be well, in the Lords time.



And I'll add one last song - by Josh Groban, I Believe





Saturday, December 30, 2017

A REMEMBERING Christmas


This Christmas holiday was another one of those joyful occasions when family gathers together.  It is always fun to see children and grandchildren enjoy being together.




We opened gifts as usual but there was something added to our gift opening that was unique and special for us this year.  




I wanted our children and grandchildren to remember special moments with their loved ones so I asked each to text, email, or write a memory of a certain person or people before they opened each gift.  It's important to share these memories and hold them close to our hearts. It helps build a connection that can last forever.  






I knew it would be fun to read, but it was even more special than I had hoped it would be.  What a wonderful Christmas gift it was reading these memories.  I asked for memories of Terry, his parents, and my parents.



Among the gifts were some "homemade" gifts made by my mother and father.  This is a train he made for us years ago (when Gregory was born).  The kids played with it for years until I put it up on the library shelves for safe keeping, coming down only a few times for a grandchild's request.




Dad and mom made more this year after asking each of their children how many they would like.  I ordered one for each of our children and gave it to them for Christmas.  


I also received a homemade Christmas gift from my parents - a shuffle board.  There will, of course, be much more fun in the future.  




In this picture one of the grandchildren spilled their mini m&ms onto the board.  This brought a cheerful noise and created another fun activity.


There were many fun activities during the holiday - like playing in the snow.   





We also enjoyed going to the theater to watch a movie.  Something we have done a few times in the past.  





This year we saw FERDINAND at the Lee Theater in Ephrata ..., with pizza.  :)   





This story is about Ferdinand - a bull in Spain who would rather sit under the cork tree and smell flowers than fight in the bullfights. 






I bought this book for Terry many years ago.  It was a fun story for Terry and I because of Terry's service to the Spain, Barcelona mission (1976-78). Unfortunately I'm not sure if our children really remember us reading it to them much.  I did pull it out and read it to those here at the house the day before we went to the movie.




It was a cute movie, though a bit different than the book.  Because of the connection with the book I felt like Terry was a part of this fun family adventure.  I am sure he would have enjoyed it too.  I am anxious for the video to come out so I can own it.


This Christmas we remembered fun moments from our past and it will be a fun Christmas to remember.  I have invited all to continue to send me memories for the next few months, if not forever.  When I asked for these memories I knew it would be great to receive them, but it feels more like I gave myself a special Christmas gift. I enjoyed reading every word and recalling the special moments each talked about.

There is joy in remembering.



Sunday, December 10, 2017

I Believe in Christ


President Thomas S. Monson said;

"To catch the real meaning of the spirit of Christmas, 
we need only drop the last syllable and it becomes 
the Spirit of Christ."



I started putting up Christmas decorations this past weekend because I needed do do something exciting and fun.   I needed to feel the Spirit of Christ.





I got the trees all up and the lights on them all and started to decorate them.  Usually my large real tree is the one that holds all the random ornaments from years and years of collecting, but this year I just wanted to make it my nativity or Christ tree.  So I left the majority of my ornaments in the box and began to decorate it with things like angels, nativities, stars, words, etc that remind me of Christ.




It was perfect!  Exactly what I needed to do, the way I needed to do it.   I needed to remind myself of the important things about life - about The Plan of Happiness.                         I need to feel closer to my husband so putting up Christ decorations made me feel closer to him and to Christ.  Both were much needed!



I decorated my "Terry Tree" and then, feeling more nostalgic I created a hanky tree to remind me of Christmas Eve in Seattle, and Christmas Day in Seattle.   I also put up the wreath with hankies (also from Seattle days).





I spent Friday and Saturday close to Christ and to memories of Terry and the miracle that makes eternity possible.    
(FYI - I love Elder Donald L. Hailstorm's message about miracles, HERE)   

"We are living a miracle, and further miracles lie ahead."






When I got done and things cleaned up, I sat down with my scriptures to read thru the block of scriptures for the seminary lessons this week.  I left Christmas music playing and was enjoying the candle light and tree lights all around me.   The lights are one of my favorite things about Christmas.

I don't mind if my house lights are not turned on in the evening because I always have a candle light going and night lights around the house.  It's a beautiful glow and I do enjoy it.   There is another Light I enjoy - the Light of Christ in my life - I could not live without it.





Today is the third anniversary of Terry's passing so my mind has certainly been preoccupied with that thought for the last few weeks.  As I sat there in the quiet solitude of the evening a thought came to me:


I do fine for a while then I hit a low.  Seems I should not do that so often since I am reading scriptures and studying daily...,  and I know the gospel is true and I believe in Christ.  When I recognize I am at a low point again I just need to continue to pray and fast and study and endure, because there will be a moment when something clicks, something helps.  Little moments adding up to lift me out of my low point.


Having this thought reminded me of a story I told in a sacrament meeting talk for Easter this year, about the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  I love this story and it was very personal to me.  I tell the story here and continue with the thoughts I shared after it.



"A woman walking along a road fell into a pit so deep she could not climb out. No matter what she did, she could not get out by herself. The woman called for help and rejoiced when a kind passerby heard her and lowered a ladder down into the pit. This allowed her to climb out of the pit and regain her freedom.

"We are like the woman in the pit. Sinning is like falling into the pit, and we can't get out by ourselves. Just as the kind passerby heard the woman's cry for help, Heavenly Father sent His Only Begotten Son to provide the means of escape.

Jesus Christ's atonement could be compared to lowering a ladder into the pit; it gives us the means to climb out." But the Savior does more than lower the ladder, He "comes down into the pit and makes it possible for us to use the ladder to escape."

"Just as the woman in the pit had to climb up the ladder, we must repent of our sins and obey the gospel principles and ordinances to climb out of our pit and make the Atonement of Jesus Christ work in our lives. Thus, after all we can do, the Atonement makes it possible for us to become worthy to return to Heavenly Father's presence."


Using this same analogy - too, at times, have felt like I was in a pit, unable to climb out on my own. This most recent time, I did not fall in because of devastating sin, but because of debilitating loneliness, sorrow, and despair. I even somehow felt betrayed because I didn't get what I was praying for.

Then in my darkest moment, Jesus Christ lowered a ladder and climbed in beside me and helped me find my way out. (In reality, He had probably lowered the ladder much earlier than I had seen.)

He did it in a way that gave me opportunity to accept or reject His help. He was there to help me, but I had to take that step upward and out. He was holding His hand out to rescue me, but I had to take hold and not let go.

There have been countless times that Christ has climbed in beside me and helped me escape whatever was holding me back. Each time I felt the peace He offers us. Sometimes the answer is simply PEACE.

We should never let our sin or sorrow or frustration and disappointments block the way and keep us from reaching out to Christ in faith and taking our Savior's hand, accepting the Atonement of Jesus Christ so that we may enjoy our lifetime of moments leading to eternity.


Well, my day has come to an end, and its been a great day.  I love my family.  I love the gospel of Jesus Christ.  I love the Savior and our Heavenly Father.
I do miss my husband, and I do feel a bit homesick..., but I'm Fine!  :)





Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Memories On My Mind



There has been a place in my heart for Owl City music since our personal Hello [to] Seattle in 2010.  It's definitely a personal thing.


Today I was listening to some Owl City music and found a couple new songs I hadn't heard before - or at least I don't remember them right now.  They hit a chord in my heart and I just had to share.  If anyone reads this - I hope you enjoy - otherwise, I have them here To Remind Me!



Paperman "Owl City: I Found Love" (Disney Short)




This was so fun to watch ;)  I too FOUND LOVE!
FYI - I do believe in true love!
And I believe in miracles!



 The lyrics of this next one are great - my dad's a hero to me!


Owl City - Not All Heroes Wear Capes (Acoustic)



I love my mom and dad!  No Cape Needed!
I see their strength and their goodness and their love for the Savior and I feel their love for me. 
They are awesome!



I've been a bit nostalgic the last couple days and it has sent me back to my blog searching for some posts about Seattle and about Terry.   I had music playing in the background, which included this awesome song that fit so perfectly with what I was reading at the time.


Owl City - In Christ Alone (I Stand)





Before I go, and, in keeping with the Owl City theme, I found a Christmas song in this earlier post :) Veggie Tales (:  



FYI - I must add this disclaimer - this is not a paid advertisement for Owl City.  :)

I suppose he could pay me if he wanted, but I just felt like sharing a few of my thoughts, and today they included his music.

And, since he is not paying me, I am free to say that not every Owl City song strikes a chord for me, but some do, and I am grateful for talent and sharing talents that bless the lives of others.  And he has talent.  I can select the songs I like and skip over those I don't quite care for.  



I do love good and inspirational music!




Now I will share one more thing I found today just to cheer and delight -




What do you call people who are afraid of Santa Claus?













Claustrophobic!   




Okay, you've probably heard it before, but it is cute ..., right?  ;)



Have a wonderful day! 



Thursday, November 30, 2017

There have been so many times I have read something in my seminary lessons that has blessed my life, lifted my soul, and helped me to see the goodness of God ... over and over again.

Image result for I love seminary

I love being reminded of these spiritual truths and decided to put them somewhere to help me more easily find them again.  So I add them here To Remind Me!




Richard G. Scott:
"Don't look for a life virtually free from discomfort, pain, pressure, challenge, or grief, for those are the tools of a loving Father uses to stimulate our personal growth and understanding."




Orson F. Whitney:
"No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted.  It ministers to our education, to the development of such qualities as patience, faith, fortitude and humility.   All that we suffer and all that we endure, especially when we endure it patiently, builds up our characters, purifies our hearts, expands our souls, and makes us more tender and charitable, more worthy to be called the children of God .. and it is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that we gain the education that we come here to acquire and which will make us more like our Father and Mother in heaven."




Video message: The Will of God






Sunday, June 25, 2017

Our numbers are rising!


Connor and Bekah have a baby girl - born June 24, 2017



Jessie Mae



They had many visitors that evening and her cousins were thrilled to see her.  They have been so excited about this little baby coming to join our family . . . and she has arrived!  She is sweet and precious.  We all love her.




We now have 8 grandsons and 8 granddaughters  :)  for a total of 16 grandchildren.



Friday, June 23, 2017

Making the Rounds

I spent a couple weeks traveling to see some of my children and grandchildren.

First on the agenda was a few days with Brandon, Megan, and Turner.  It was a fun visit and included things like Sushi, a visit to the Aquarium, and lunch at Bubba Gumps.

Turner enjoyed the creatures in the water, but his favorite was definitely the diver.  He even had some one on one interaction with him as the diver asked Turner to point to his nose and his ear.



Touching the starfish was fun too.




Turner also asked if I would watch Trolls with him, and I happily agreed.  I hadn't seen it before so it was new and exciting.




If someone were to ask if I would recommend the movie, I would have to say that I recommend watching it with a grandchild - that makes it most fun.  :)   I'm not sure how I would have felt about it if I were on my own.  ;)

Grandchildren make most anything better :).

It was fun to hear the songs from that movie.  Those songs were familiar, but were changed a bit from when I once knew them.  :)  And it was fun to hear some of the actors and actresses voices that seemed familiar.



Next on my trip was to go see Brayden, Tawny, Ethan, and Maddie perform in their dance recitals.  The recitals were exciting to watch - they each performed wonderfully.




 




Then Brayden was ordained a Deacon in the Aaronic Priesthood.  Twelve years old!  My family is growing.  I love them all!  It was great to see Gregory and Adena and their family, and the home they recently moved to.


From there I went to visit Chase and Rebekah.  We enjoyed our visit and went to watch a movie at the theater.  But from here on out I didn't take any pics. :/
From there I went to visit BJo and Nate.  BJo and I went to some antique stores. Chase and Rebekah came and my parents were in town visiting my brother and his wife, so we all went out to dinner and then went to Casper (where they make Fat Boys - they make and serve there a delicious soft and creamy black licorice ice-cream).


It was a new experience for me to travel alone to see my kids, but it was a good one.  I'm sure I'll do it again some day.  I did love getting home though.  




Sunday, May 21, 2017

A Wedding Celebration!

Our daughter, BrittanyJo Hebdon became BrittanyJo Henrie on May 9, 2017.  She is now part of a new family and we welcome a new member to our family.

 Nate and BrittanyJo Henrie.



This was a happy occasion of course, but I admit, it has given me a bit of anxiety as I see her last name different than it has been for the last 21 years.  Actually, we felt like we had a BrittanyJo Hebdon in the family since 1982. 




The name change is new for me, of course, since my boys have all kept their last names.  It's an odd sensation, but I suppose I'll get used to it in time.  In some ways I feel like I've lost her, and surely I have given her away (sort of).  I've given her away with the understanding that she is still mine.   It's a good thing, so I'm trying to get used to it.  After all, I did that one time too, and have been so blessed and grateful that I did.




These two awesome people got to know each other and soon learned that they loved each other and wanted to spend eternity together, so one year after they first started talking they were married.







As with all of our children, we have spent years preparing for this day, but different than the other children, we had put several years of searching and shopping into it. We loved the idea of vintage china plates and goblets so we began collecting them a few years ago.  It was a fun and exciting thing to do together. 



Choosing favors was fun too, and we hope everyone was able to get a favor before they left.





We added to our list of vintage items - things like silverware, linen napkins, doilies, silver pitchers and trays, candle sticks, and anything else we liked and wanted to add to our collection. ;)




All of these things were added and put together to help create the look we wanted.



We added some other things that meant a lot to our family and helped warm our hearts on this special day.  Those things included Terry's work boots and the mail box he made thirty-some years ago.  In fact, much of what was used has some simple but fun memory with it.  The quilt was made by BrittanyJo.






We added some fun and favorite foods too.  It was all so very fun, and even the youngest in attendance enjoyed.



We have some wonderful family and friends that helped us set up and serve and make this day the special day it was.  To them, and to all who attended and sent greetings, we say THANK YOU!


Here we have the bridesmaids and groomsmen.



This next set of pics does not include all of the help (some seemed to avoid or escape the camera), but these pictures do represent all who helped throughout the event, from set up to take down.  THANK YOU ALL!



And of course we would not have been able to enjoy this occasion without all of our family and friends that attended.  We are missing people from these photos too, but, to all we say THANK YOU!









We thank you all for helping us create the memories from this day that will last a life time.




The sun went down on this beautiful day and we were all happy for the wonderful day that it was.



We even enjoyed the take down and clean up!




They had a great honeymoon and then returned to Idaho for an open house on the 20th.  That too was a great event where family and friends gathered to celebrate and share in this special occasion.





They / We have much to be grateful for!



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