Friday, June 26, 2015

Our Adventure!

Auger, Akleigh, and Boston spent the night Monday night so Thomas and Dana could go to the temple early Tuesday morning.  That afternoon Anthony, Auger, Akleigh and I left to Longview.

We had a great time visiting family, but the drive to and from was not so wonderful. Traffic was backed up both both days due to accidents and road work, making our drive longer than normal - what normally takes 4 hours took us about 6 hours to get there and 6 hours 40 minutes to get home. Several times Auger referred to parts of our trip as a new adventure, and indeed it was.

My sister's son got married last week and their open house was Wednesday night.

I helped her decorate.  We did something very similar to BJo's graduation so there wasn't too much time needed for the early preparation.

We set up the tent in the front lawn.  I say we, but I didn't do much with the tent - I left that up to a few of my awesome sons.

Thomas and Dana come over to the house often and as we talked about the needs for this reception Thomas agreed to come set up the tent if work would allow..., and it did.  I wanted Connor and Chase to be able to get their hours with the farm work but I wanted to leave Tuesday and come home Thursday.

Thomas' car couldn't fit their children and mine, so to make it work best, I left Tuesday afternoon and took Anthony, Auger and Akleigh with me.  Thomas and Dana (and Boston) brought Chase and Connor with them after morning work was done Wednesday.  They came, set up the tent, attended the event, and then took down the tent and loaded it for me, and they came home that night to be ready for work Thursday.  Those with me stayed the night because I don't do well with night driving.

It was a lovely evening, in spite of the sun and heat.  They had a nice turn out and served yummy ice cream and toppings.

You probably know me by now and are already wishing I had better pictures to show, but these are the only photos I was able to get in my not-so-spare time.

This is the ice cream table and a little corner table behind the line.  (All of the pretty glass bowls belong to my mother.)

The individual tables.

I managed to get this shot from behind the ice cream where I spent my time.  I was so happy to help dish up the ice cream.  This was my first reception I have braved since Terry's passing.  When my sister asked if my boys would want to take turns with that responsibility I quickly took hold of that job (without even asking my boys) and it was the best place for me for the night.  I think she knew that was my place - she was helping me as I was helping her.   One more step forward.  It was all wonderful.

No one is posing, nor is it a glamorous shot, and we don't even see the bride and groom, but it was a quick "get it while I can" type moment.  I wish I had done it again later.  :(

One thing that is not very noticeable is the wall at the right side of the tent.  We knew we needed a few more chairs and we knew it was a warm day.  We thought of leaving that side off, but it didn't look very nice and it was the street side, so it was just not pleasant at all.  So my dad and Thomas got some posts and attached the wall to posts set in the ground about 6 or ? feet away from the tent.  This allowed for the breeze to enter and the travelers on the road to not see in. It kept it private and pretty.

I've spent a few minutes wondering what more to say in this post, but keep backing out.  Maybe I'll post another little bit later, and there will be more events coming up in the next couple months to talk about, so I'm just going to just say this -

I LOVE MY FAMILY!   Every one!


I am so grateful for the good days I've had the last couple weeks.

Monday, June 22, 2015

To Remind Me Notes from What's on the Other Side?

Notes I wrote on my book mark while reading the book What's on the Other Side? by Brent L. Top

The gospel teaches us that the most important learning is acquired through spiritual means (p13)

On the other side of the veil, there are perhaps seventy billion people.  They need the same gospel, and releases occur here to aid the Lord's work there.  Each release of a righteous individual from this life is also a call to new labors.  Those who have true hope understand this.  Therefore, though we miss the departed righteous so much here, hundreds may feel their touch there.  In God's ecology, talent and love are never wasted .... A mortal life may need to be 'shortened' by twenty years as we might view - but if so, it may be done in order for  special services to be rendered by that individual in the spirit world, services that will benefit thousands of new neighbors. (Neal A Maxwell, p33+)

Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ my "life  review" can be modified to feature the new me instead of the old one.  The sins I have repented of will be forgotten / not remembered.

Love is the answer for everything.

Every day, every moment I am writing my own eulogy. (p72)

Living day by day means doing everything each day with an eternal perspective. (p74)

To Remind Me Notes from Choose Higher Ground

All quotes in this post come from the book Choose Higher Ground by Henry B. Eyring.
(Keep in mind that I did not read the complete book.  I wasn't feeling up to it at the time, but did read parts of it, including all of  the highlights.  I am transferring the notes I wrote on my page marker onto this post.)

highlight area on p115

"The thought 'Someday I will' can be a thief of the opportunities of time and the blessings of eternity." (p3)

"The spirit who led the rebellion in the world before still opposes the plan and wants you to be miserable.  He wants you never to find your way home again.  That enemy of your soul knows you and your goodness. He know that if he can turn you away from walking in the light, he can both capture you and stop you from helping others along the journey."  (p30)

"Because you are so valuable, some of your trials may be severe.  You need never be discouraged or afraid.  The way through difficulties has always been prepared for you, and you will find it if you exercise faith." (p33)

"By the Spirit of Christ and by the Holy Ghost, you may walk confidently in whatever difficulties come." (p33)

"The great test of life is to see whether we will hearken to and obey God's commands in the midst of the storms of life.  It is not to endure storms, but to choose the right while they rage." (p35)

"He will give us no test without preparing the way for us to pass it." (p64)

"The very opportunity for us to face adversity and affliction is part of the evidence of Their infinite love.  ...Then our spirits will be changed.  We will become able to want what God wants, to think as He thinks, and thus be prepared for the trust of an endless posterity to teach and to lead though tests to be raised up to qualify to live forever in eternal life." (96)

"...the disciple who accepts a trial as an invitation to grow and therefore qualify for eternal life can find peace in the midst of the struggle." (p97)

"The Lord always suits the relief to the person in need to best strengthen and purify him or her.  Often it will come in the inspiration to do what might seem especially hard for the person who needs help himself." (p99)

"He set a course for each of us that can polish and perfect us to be with Him." (p101)

"Trials are necessary for us to be shaped and made fit to receive that happiness that comes as we qualify for the greatest of all the gifts of God." (p115)

"The tests we face, their severity, their timing, and their duration will be unique for each of us.  Two things will be the same for all of us.  1. The tests at times will stretch us enough for us to feel the need for help beyond our own, and 2. God in His kindness and wisdom has made the power of deliverance available to us." (p115)

"Through His experience the Savior came to know all our grief.  He could have known them by the inspiration of the Spirit.  But He chose instead to know by experiencing them for Himself." (p117)

"We can determine to rise up and pray in great faith and humility." (p122)

"You can and must go forward with confidence.  If you start determined to qualify for God's power of deliverance in all the trials of mortality, you will succeed.  You will be strengthened.  You will be guided around and through barriers.  Help and comfort will come.  Your faith in Heavenly Father and the Savior will be increased.  You will be strengthened to resist evil.  And you will feel the gospel of Jesus Christ working in your life." (p123)

"Your experience in enduring well in the trials of life by drawing on God's power of deliverance can bring you the assurance you need to find peace in this life an confidence for the next." (p124)

"The power of the Holy Ghost is real.  It will come, again and again.  And one overriding truth it will always testify to us that Jesus is the Christ.  That testimony will draw us to the Savior and to accepting the help He offers to all who are being tested in the crucible of mortality." (p129)

"Let us do whatever is required to qualify for the Holy Ghost as our companion, and then let us go forward fearlessly so that we will be given powers to do whatever the Lord calls us to do." (p144)

"I urge all of us, young and old, who are called to speak in a meeting in the name of the Lord to dismiss our feelings of self-doubt and inadequacy.  We don't have to use soaring language or convey deep insights.  Simple words of testimony will do."  (p149)

"...give your best effort and your whole heart.  Do it cheerfully and with the prayer of faith.  Your efforts will be magnified in the lives of the people you serve." (p158)

"The Lord knew the trials we would face.  By faithful service and through His Atonement, we can come to want what He wants and be what we must be to bless those we serve for Him." (p166)

"If you are on the right path, it will always be uphill." (p237)

"Only a steady, ever increasing effort will allow the Lord to take us to higher ground."  (p244)

Sunday, June 21, 2015

"male and female created he them"

Happy Fathers Day!

I read through the May 2015 Ensign through the month of May and enjoyed every message.  As I read a message given at the General Conference Priesthood Session

Fatherhood, Our Eternal Destiny by Larry M. Gibson

I felt the goodness of it and decided to write a post - and post dated it for Father's Day.

I enjoyed reading it and thought of my father, my husband, and my sons.  This one sentence touched my heart.

"I love being a husband and father - married to a chosen daughter of heavenly parents.  I love her.  It is one of the most fulfilling parts of my life."   

Immediately after reading that line (and hoping that Terry could say that of me) I changed one thing with that sentence - from male to female because it echoed my sentiments as to how I feel about my position in life.

I love being a wife and mother - married to a chosen son of heavenly parents.  I love him.  It is one of the most fulfilling parts of my life.  

We cannot celebrate Father's Day the same as we have the past 34 years, but we can remember the good times.  It is awesome to have good times to remember.

My thoughts continued - We cannot celebrate Father's Day without mothers and we cannot celebrate Mother's Day without fathers.  There just cannot be one without the other.  Adam may have been created first, but Eve was placed at his side and when they became father and mother it was side by side at the exact same time. One could not be without the other.  That's just the way it is.  That's just the way our Father in Heaven, and I might add, our Savior, Jesus Christ, wanted and planned and created it.  "And, behold, it was very good." (Genesis 1:31)

I am grateful for my earthly father.  You can learn a little about him here.  I am grateful for his many years of love and sacrifice on my behalf, his guidance and counsel, his example of all things good, for his testimony and his faith in Christ. I'm grateful that he is my father. I love him!

I am grateful for my husband, who became the father of our children.  I am grateful for everything about him.  I am grateful that he found me and loved me and wanted me to be at his side always and forever, and lived a life that would allow that to happen.  He is a good man. I love him!

This image is from a poem book I created for him eight years ago.  The image includes words I put together for Terry for our anniversary ten years ago, that tried to share how I felt about him.  They help one see the man Terry was and is, but it is not complete.

One of our sons started a list of thoughtful words that others have used to describe Terry from the cards and comments since his passing.  I have tried to continue to add to it as things continued to come in. As I read through them I feel grateful for him and that others saw him as the good man he was.  I am so anxious to see what he is becoming still.  I look forward to that day with great joy and anticipation.

Some of these were said word for word by more than one, but not listed here more than once. 
·       Pleasure to talk to
·       Great neighbor
·       Wonderful man in our community
·       A great example
·       Endure trial with a positive attitude and stay the same purpose
·       Awesome person
·       Good influence
·       Always close to the spirit
·       Confident in his faith
·       Humbly followed the Savior and His servants
·       Steadiness and constant faith
·       A great man
·       So kind, gentle and humble
·       Full of love
·       Righteous example
·       Always willing to share his testimony
·       Quiet confidence and kindness
·       Always had a smile no matter what he was going through.
·       Very caring man
·       Easy going spirit
·       Friendly disposition
·       Competed hard, always put the team first
·       Inspiration to his teammates and coaches
·       Reflective, intelligent person with solid priorities
·       Quiet, compassionate, loving soul
·       Quiet natured generosity and kindness
·       Valiant spirit
·       No finer man than Terry
·       Such a good man. They don’t come any finer.
·       Incredible beacon of light
·       Sweet smile and sweeter spirit
·       Honorable man, a man to be remembered.  Always had a big heart and good soul.
·       Good man with a good family
·       Very good spirit and soul
·       Good man, wise man, good friend
·       Handsome, wonderful man
·       Gentle and soft.  A man of not many words, but was a poet.  He thought before he spoke and spoke with economy of words in manly way.
·       Courage, strength, faithfulness and endurance
·       Exemplary father and great example of a faith filled life
·       Intense inquisitiveness and compassion.  Quiet yet intense concern for and about others was one of his great strengths.  Wonderful friend and example.
·       Generous and kind
·       An example of what is good and right
·       Wonderful, inspiring man

I am grateful for the years Terry and I had together.  And behold, it was very good!

I am grateful for my 8 sons.  My desire for these sons is that they recognize their eternal destiny and fulfill it well.  I am grateful for the men they are becoming.  We spend a life time becoming, and it doesn't end there.  Improvement and progression is one eternal round.  Each of us has a divine nature.  Wonderful isn't it!

There is a young man out there somewhere that will join our family someday, becoming our only son in law, and I am grateful for him, even though I do not know him at this time.  Most likely BrittanyJo has not yet met him, but he is out there and I pray for him, that he will be the husband and father and son of God that God intends him to be, strong and steadfast in the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I am grateful for good men everywhere - Our Prophet, our Bishop, Priesthood leaders that have blessed our lives and help us become who we are today and encourage us to become better.  Friends and neighbors who share and serve and spread love and kindness.

I am grateful for our loving Heavenly Father.  He and His Beloved Son are One in purpose and together They know me, They love me, They help me, They guide me, They comfort me ...   I love Them!  They make this life so very good!

Monday, June 1, 2015

An Announcement!

We have a wedding this year!

Chase and Rebekah first met in 2011, and served together at the Nauvoo Young Performers Mission. Each returned home after that mission, served a full time mission and corresponded for the past four years.

Most recently they met up again at a Nauvoo Mission reunion in Utah and decided they wanted to share the rest of time and eternity together.

The wedding will be held in the San Diego Temple.   8 . 8 . 2015

We are so happy and excited for them!

Click here for a couple posts from Nauvoo Mission - Our Nauvoo Missionary and Awesome Email.