Tuesday, September 30, 2008

This Story Is For The Birds!

Last night, Mom and Dad stopped by to say, "Hi." It was so nice to sit and visit. By the time they left, we were all belly laughing! I NEED to share!
Dad said that he, Darin, Rocky, Mitchell and Jason went to get some trusses. They had a HUGE load and ended up driving 40 mile per hour down the freeway! To make a long story short, they ended up pulling over on the University Avenue exit and waiting for Tannis to drive behind them with her safty blinkers on.
As he sat there, suddenly an owl flew into his window and scared the $#!*% out of him! Of course, Dad, Rocky, Mitchell and Jason got a good laugh out of it.
Mom said that she was reading the paper the other day and found where the BLM found an injured owl and nursed him back to health. They released it back into the wild just a day before this happened.
I just got an email from Darin that said, "I know nothing and have no recolection of any owl."
Does this ring a bell?
You draw your own conclusions!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Words to Live by Alec - On Taking Tests Part 2

Because of popular demand, I need to add to and clarify this post. First of all, no, the teacher didn't give him credit for the African Wild Coast answer.
He didn't get credit for this one either - "Who is Margaret Jayne?" Alec's answer, "I don't know. No one has introduced us!" He did, however get credit for this question - "What happened to the SS Wrath?" His answer, "It sank."
Teachers have a special place in heaven. They rate right up there with Nursery Leaders and Scout Masters.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Tag! (from Brandie)

I am: nothing short of amazing!
I think: about my family almost constantly.
I know: change is the only constant
I want: financial security and a healthy 128 lb. body!
I dislike: oysters!
I miss: carefree days!
I fear: for the economy
I feel: deeply and passionately
I hear: beautiful music (my i-pod is playing)
I smell: the cool, crisp air
I crave: Pepsi (lately)
I cry: Freely and often
I usually: am smiling
I search: for universal truths
I wonder: what the future will bring
I regret: my self doubt and loathing
I love: my family, silent snow falls w/huge snow flakes & watermelon
I care: about the under dog
I always: think about what I am going to eat!
I worry: about Paul
I am not: a pet lover
I remember: The comfort and security of my father’s lap.
I believe: t hat people are basically good
I dance: daily – rain or shine!
I sing: either out loud or in my heart constantly!
I don't always: make my bed
I argue: when I’m tired
I write: for therapy
I win: at Solitaire A LOT!
I lose: my shoes!
I wish: I was TOTALLY out of debt
I listen: attentively
I don't understand: what is so important about the blame game!
I can usually be found: at home or at work
I am scared: when I drive! (You should be, too!)
I need: love and attention
I forget: past failures
I am happy: that I finally figured it out! (forgetting past failures)
I tag: YOU!!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Pain is Inevitable - Misery is Optional

I would love to take credit for that insight, but I can't. Paul and I heard Hyrum Smith speak (No, it wasn't a seance, he is the co-founder of Franklin Planner). He was asked to speak to some of the victims of the 9-11 tragedy. Right after he began, someone from the audience shouted out, "After everything we have witnessed and lost, are you going to tell us that every thing is rosy and to smile?" He replied with that thought - Pain is Inevitable, misery is optional.

That message is so powerful to me, that I think I will never forget it. I feel like I have had a good share of trials that have left their mark. 'They' say that time heals all wounds. I say that some wounds may never heal, but as time goes by, you develop a callous that allows you to function.

There were times in my life that I didn't think I would ever be the same. I even got to the point where I thought, 'Christ's time in the garden and on the cross was only hours long, then his pain was over. ' My excruciating pain seemed to go on for weeks, months and in some things, years. (Yeah, I was immature and short sighted. I have since BEGGED for forgiveness.)

When I heard that thought, something dawned on me. When it was time to put the pain behind me and move on, in some cases, I was unwilling to let go of the pity. I had become so comfortable in my misery, I didn't realize that I was stuck. The pain became manageable, but I couldn't get past the misery.

WOW! It is so liberating to realize that I can let go of the misery.

No one gets through this life unscathed - but many get by with smiles on their face. That is me! Oh, you will see tears, but there will always be a smile, kind of like the rainbow after, and sometimes, during the rain.

There it is again, the idea of dancing in the rain. I think I see a reoccurring theme here!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Words to Live by Alec - On Taking Tests

Alec informed me that he has learned how to take tests. If you don't know the answer, just make it up anyway! For example, one of the questions was, "Tell me about the worst cyclone ever recorded in history." He answered, "The wind blew and it messed things up." He actually got credit for that!

Another questions was, "Why is a coast in Africa called the "Wild Coast"?" He answered, "Too much partying."
He's a freakin' genius!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom!

Today is my mom's birthday. She is such an amazing woman. I know everyone thinks that of their mom, but I think I can prove my point! She tops the 'Amazing' list!
She has a strong spirit. Even as a young child, she knew the importance of the gospel in her life. She would attend church weekly, sometimes alone. She has a strong testimony and lives it daily.
She knew she wanted an eternal marriage, so she married a man that is as close to perfect as you can get on this earth. Together they raised 9 children. WOW!
I have often referred to her as 'Saint Shirley' and believe me, she has earned that title. This woman has a direct line to heaven. Her motherly instincts are almost psychic. She knows when her children need her and what to do about it. You can feel that the Lord is at her side almost all of the time.
She not only taught the importance of hard work and education, but she is a living example of it. She was up every morning before the crack of dawn to herd her kids out to do their chores, cook a HOT breakfast, have family prayer (on our knees - of course), read scriptures then help every one off to their various destinations. She washed 4 or 5 loads of laundry DAILY, cooked, cleaned, and taught a plethora of piano lessons. She did this for over 40 years! She was never idle. Even when she would visit with the neighbors, she had a big bowl of beans to snap, or something similar. When the chore was done, so was her visiting and back to work she went. If you were to sneak into her room at night, you could always catch her reading. Not just any book, but a self improvement or religious book. She is always trying to better herself.
She shares her talent of music wherever she goes. She has probably influenced thousands of people with her music. Between her hundreds of piano students and her various church callings, she spread the love of music everywhere. We were not in the car more than 10 minutes before we were all singing some silly song. Everyone of her children have a deep appreciation and love for music because of her.
She is a beautiful woman - inside and out! She is tough as nails yet as feminine as a flower. She can hunt and fish, pack a gun and rough it with the best of them and yet, she still carries herself like royalty. She always was trying to teach us manners and etiquette as well as gutting a deer and starting a fire.
She makes the best of every situation. She is always looking for the joy in life and always finding it. If there was something unpleasant to do, she makes a game of it.
Our home was always open to anyone at anytime. She is giving and loving. It doesn't matter if you are related or if you are one of the many who call her your 2nd mom or grandma, you are family when you are around her. It is not very often that you visit her home without leaving with a bag of peaches or a loaf of homemade bread or some other home made treat.
She loves deeply, laughs freely, gives unselfishly and cares from the bottom of her heart.
She has made such an impact in so many people's lives. She is truly and 'elect woman'.
Happy Birthday and we're looking forward to many more happy birthdays.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My Own True Love

Even though the calendar says Wednesday, it is my Tuesday! I stayed home Monday. I just didn't feel good! I had slept through the weekend and thought that would let my body heal itself. One thing about aging, you don't seem to bounce back as fast as you used to! The 24 hour flu can take me 4 - 5 days to recover! Enough belly-aching! LOL.

Lately, my thoughts have been on loving and respecting myself. I have usually sought for acceptance through others. If everyone else loves it, I love it. If everyone else accepts is, I accept it. If I am receiving praise from others, I must be doing well. My self esteem was based mostly on outside influences. It wasn't until a couple of weeks ago that I realized that others only love and cherish me to the extent that I love and cherish myself. What a shocker! Luckily, I have been surrounded by mostly good people who look for the good in others. I appreciate their love and support, but always wondered why I was never put first in their lives. Well, to begin with, I was never first in my life. Don't get me wrong, I am a firm believer in service and giving, but there gets to be a time when you have nothing to give, and wonder what happened! In the spirit of Stephen Covey, if your saw isn't sharp, you're not a very useful tool! But using the same analogy, what good is a sharp saw, if it is just sitting in the shed! There is balance!
I have been trying to be perfect to be accepted, and when I fall short, I go for the sympathy. This is so self destructive! When you go for the 'poor me' method, you bring yourself below your potential. The sympathy card may get you a hand out or a pat on the head, but in the long run, you haven't gained anything until you pull yourself up and work through your challenges.
This is where the self worth begins. I heard someone say, "Do something hard, everyday, and see what happens." This person chose to take a cold shower to 'toughen' him up. Hey, whatever works!
I LOVE and appreciate my sweet angel, Julia, who sent me the story of finding your own true love. She said she found out that her true love was herself. What a perfect love story! I found the same. As I love myself, so do others, just as deeply and perfectly as I love myself. And it works the other way, too. The more I love and appreciate myself, the more I see the beauty and miracle in others. What a GREAT discovery!
Isn't she a angel?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Families Are Forever - Or It Just Seems That Way!

What a wonderful weekend! We went camping with family and friends at Bennion. There were probably 60 - 80 people there! It wasn't quiet, but it was fun!
The weather was very nice, which was lucky for us, because as Dad and I put up the tent, I noticed that the rain flap wasn't in where it should have been. As Paul and I went to bed Friday night and woke up Saturday morning, we had a beautiful view of the sky and trees through the screen at the top of the tent. Graden and Haley set up their tent close to ours. We had a GREAT place!
We had heard the forecast, that it was supposed to rain on Sunday. We were fine, because we were planning on going home Sunday morning. Well, Sunday morning, at about 5:00 a.m. Graden shook our tent and said, "You guys, it's raining." It's a good thing he did that because Paul and I were out COLD! When he woke us up, we felt our blankets and they were WET!

We quickly threw our stuff in the back of my car. Graden said, "Come sleep with us. We have plenty of room." WHAT A TROOPER! That was WAY on and beyond the call of "Son-in-law-hood".

I think the thing that really made me realize that he is truly one of the family, was not only that unselfish act, but as we settled in, out of the blue, he ask, "If you have a bee in your hand, what do you have in your eye?" Oh no! One of the LAST things I want to worry about at 5:00 a.m. in the rain is bug bites! He answered his own question, "Beauty." "What?" I asked. He said, " You know, Beauty is in the eye of the bee-holder." WHAT A GROANER! Yeah, he's about as off the wall as the rest of us!

I love you Graden!