Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Pat's Run 2010

Emie and I got to go and run in Pat's Run this year along with like 30,000 other people!  It was super crowded, but really fun!  We had to get up at 4:30 a.m. so we could get there in time to get registered & get our t-shirts.  It was hard getting up, but we had a great time & I'm just glad that Emie was nice enough to slow down and run with me!  That girl could've ran so much faster!  You're amazing Em...thanks for running with your OLD mama!  Love you!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Peace...

Okay, I admit, to say that it is peaceful around here may be a stretch, but in the last few weeks I have finally felt at peace for the first time in awhile.  Peace in my heart at least about what we are doing with our lives, and peace about some of the decisions that we have made of late.  Todd and I were discussing getting answers to prayers a few weeks ago, and how sometimes God just lets us go with our gut and we have to make decisions, sometimes even big ones, on our own.  He has often told us that he is not going to counsel us in all things, but we are also told to pray always.  I have wondered about that many times.  Sometimes we may not feel that we get answers to our prayers, at least the out loud kind, where God is telling us what to do.  Often those answers do come, however, in ways we least expect them, or in quiet thoughts or impressions in our minds, that are so simple, so subtle, that we may not even give God the credit--we may think we came up with them on our own.  I have been thinking about that this week because of a lesson we had in Relief Society last Sunday on the Holy Ghost.  The teacher was talking about how the Holy Ghost communicates with us, and how He is a mediator between us and our Heavenly Father.  The Holy Ghost is the go between.  As long as we are worthy, He is there to communicate messages that our Heavenly Father would have us hear.  As long as we are willing to be worthy, and to listen, He will speak to us.  He doesn't speak to us out loud most of the time, but He speaks with us spirit to spirit.  I thought that was powerful--sometimes I will have thoughts, or feelings, or I will have a moment where something will become clear, and I think "Wow--I have never thought of that before!"  Those moments are the Holy Ghost--teaching me, inspiring me, communicating to me, spirit to spirit, the things that Heavenly Father wants me to know.  What an amazing gift I have been given, what an amazing thought, that the Father does communicate with me, more than I even know.  I have the ability, through my faithfulness, to have a member of the Godhead with me at all times!  Isn't that amazing! 
What I have been learning is that I need to keep this channel of communication open--through prayer, and study, and I also need to make sure that I am listening.  Listening is hard sometimes.  There are so many demands on my attention, and I find it hard to just be still.  Those are the moments, however, that I am most able to hear that communication.  The other thing that I have been trying to do is to act.  When I do have a thought, or a feeling, or a prompting, I need to show Heavenly Father that I am willing to do what He wants me to do.  He will then be able to trust me, that I will act on the promptings that He gives me, and I will be able to receive answers and promptings more frequently.  In a talk called "Prayer and Promptings", Elder Boyd K. Packer tells us:  "This process is not reserved for the prophets alone.  The gift of the Holy Ghost operates equally with men, women, and even little children.  It is within this wondrous gift and power that the spiritual remedy to any problem can be found."  I loved that.  Every problem that we have can be solved if we will just listen to and obey the promptings of the Holy Ghost.  Even if the problem doesn't go away--the Holy Ghost is our comforter--he is the one who can heal the hurts, and bind the wounds that ail us. 
Later in the talk, President Packer related this poem:
With thoughtless and impatient hands,
We tangle up the plans
The Lord hath wrought.
And when we cry in pain He saith,
"Be quiet, man, while I untie the knot."
So many times in my life, I have been that man.  Trying to do things on my own, trying to muddle my way through, tangling up the plans that my Father has for me.  I need to remember to use the wonderful gifts that I have been given.  I need to remember that I am never alone.  When I do these things, I can have peace, even amidst the chaos that is my life.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Jack vs. The Pavement...

Jack decided to stand up in the wagon while on a walk with Abby--and low and behold, he fell out!  Surprise, surprise...I can't tell you how many times that kid has wiggled out of a seatbelt since he is SO stinkin' skinny, and smart too!  Anyway, it was my little Jack vs. the Pavement--and the Pavement won!  Poor little guy!   Maybe Jack will sit down when I tell him to...then again, I know enough about 2 year olds to know that is NOT the case!  Oh well, live & learn!  Sometimes in life...we fall flat on our face!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Spring...


I love Spring.  I love the flowers, and the feeling of everything coming alive again, renewed, and beautiful.  I love the orange blossoms, and the smell of spring that is in the air right now--(even if it makes me sneeze, and my nose itch, and my eyes water because spring also means allergies in my world...always has...but that is for another post...).  I love that the school year is winding down, and the kids are counting the days until summer.  I love that we there is talk of summer vacations, time as a family, days at the lake, sleeping in,  friends, and FUN!  I love that there are ball games to go to, and the weather is just perfect for sitting outside and playing at the park.  Especially because too soon it will be way too hot, and my house will feel like a prison to my kids!  Thank goodness for a cold pool in the summer--I don't know how I ever lived here without one!  I was thinking a lot about this over Easter, about how amazing Heavenly Father is, and that even the seasons testify of our Savior.  Truly all things testify of Him, of His divinity, of His mission.  I was thinking about how all of the good things in my life, every single one, has come because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  I am so lucky to have the knowledge that I have! 
During General Conference I felt so uplifted, and spiritually fed.  It was like spring for my soul.  I felt like it stirred something within me, and my spirit was awake again.  I vowed to be a better wife, and a better mother, and a better daughter of our Heavenly Father.  Then, Monday came, and Tuesday, and Wednesday, and real life.  Man, is it hard to keep those feelings when real life comes around and hits you smack in the face! I feel lately like I am just in the thick of this parenting thing.  I'm not sure how anyone in their right mind looks back and misses this stage of parenting!  I've got teenagers, who think they know everything, and toddlers, who can't do anything for themselves.  Kids in the middle somewhere too, who need my love, and occasionally some attention!  I am up half the night waiting for the teenagers to get home, and the other half of the night with the toddler, who decides that he needs to sleep in my bed if he's going to sleep at all.  Add to this chaos the stress and worry of investing money in a new business that may or may not make it--while trying to collect money owed from an old business, that may or may not make it as well, and a husband who needs my love and support.    Add to that all of the daily stresses, excercise, eating right, practicing, cleaning, laundry, church callings, etc. etc. etc.   It seems so easy for the adversary to make me feel  tired, and stressed, and worried, and afraid.  It's almost too much sometimes, and I really don't know how I can possibly do it all--then I remember.  I remember that He said that He is always there.  I remember that He said to His Disciples, "Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself."  When I think of Him, I feel comfort, and peace--even amidst the chaos and worry.  Just as we have the surety of spring coming, and the flowers blooming, and everything having a new life--tomorrow will be better.  There is always hope in a new day.  That's the beauty of Spring, and that's the beauty of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Easter 2010!

This year for Easter, we went up to Payson to be with my sister, Kimbie and her family.  My parents also were able to make the trip!  It was a great Easter weekend, and I love when General Conference falls on Easter as well.  It seems to just add to the spirituality of the whole weekend, and help us to really focus on what is important at Easter time, our Savior, Jesus Christ, and His sacrifice, and resurrection.  I am so grateful when I ponder on His mission here on Earth, and think about the love that He has for each one of us.  Last year, when we visited Israel, and were able to visit the Garden of Gethsemane, I wrote down some of my feelings:
"As I sat and looked at the trees that very well might have been here at the time of Christ, I thought about the apostles and how they slept as Jesus suffered for the sins of the world. How could they have known what he was doing? How could they have comprehended it? It’s hard for us to understand exactly what happened in this place, it’s just so amazing. It’s hard for me to wrap my mind about the magnitude of his suffering, but I am so grateful to him for his sacrifice for my sins. I am especially grateful for his example when he said, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” One of the monuments in the garden had this quote, “O Jesus, in deepest night and agony, you spoke these words of trust and surrender to God the Father in Gethsemane. In love and gratitude, I want to say in times of fear and distress, ‘My Father, I do not understand You, but I trust You.’” I loved that. If I will just trust in my Father in Heaven, even when it’s hard, he will take care of me. Because my Savior suffered, I don't have to.  I will be eternally grateful for Him, that He was willing to do that for me.  Truly, "I Stand All Amazed!"

Of course, this Easter weekend was about fun and family as well.  We went to Kimbie's neighborhood Easter Egg Hunt.  They had the Easter Bunny there, as well as a little petting zoo.  It was great weather, and we had a lot of fun!

Easter Sunday started with another Easter egg hunt, and the Easter Bunny was nice enough to bring all of the kids a notebook and pen so they could take good notes during General Conference!  They all did a great job, and I was sure to bring candy bars along so they would share what they learned with us!  All in all, it was a fun Easter Sunday, with great messages about the true meaning of Easter, and it was great to hear our leaders tell us what we need to know!  I am so grateful for my sister having us all at her house, and that Grandma and Grandpa could make it as well!  We had a great time!

Lastly, check out this picture of a home that's down the street from my sister's house in Payson.  The flag is flying half staff!  I guess the flag has been that way since Obama was elected, and the sign was added when the infamous healthcare bill was passed!  I don't know about you, but I think it's something many of us are thinking...but don't want to say.  It takes some guts to express your political views so publicly!  I wonder what kind of feedback they have gotten?  Interesting...
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