Sunday, October 9, 2011

General Conference Picnic...

In Todd's family, our General Conference Tradition is to get together as a family following the Sunday afternoon session, and talk about our favorite talks of the day.  Each person comes prepared (most with their notes), to share something they learned during Conference.  If you share something, you get your choice of candy bar!  Now that there are so many of us, over 60 when we all get together, this is no small undertaking!  We work in groups, from youngest (some as young as 1), to oldest, and each person takes a minute or two to share a thought.  I have LOVED watching my kids progress from age 1, when they say, "I love Jesus", or "I love the prophet", with great fanfare and applause, to the thoughts they give as they get older. These teenagers are just so amazing to me.  Many of them even write down questions they are wondering about, or things that they would like to learn before conference, and listen for answers to their prayers as the prophet and apostles speak. We truly have amazing leaders, who speak to the problems that our children and youth face, and I am so relieved to know that they are listening, and paying attention! (Most of the time...)  I have to tell you, Saturday conference was on in my house, but I was busy all morning doing laundry, unpacking boxes, and I was in and out of the room all morning.  Emie was at volleyball, Todd at work, Erin at an orchestra festival, and the other kids were in and out playing with friends, but my little Ashlie (6) sat there on the couch all alone,  with her little conference notebook that Grandma gave her, and dutifully took notes on EACH TALK.  On Sunday, she did it again, and even went to the bathroom one time, and came out saying, "I know what to write!" and wrote down a thought the speaker had shared while she was in the bathroom!  So if you think your little one is too young to get something out of conference, and can't sit still, think again!  A candy bar from Grandma and Grandpa was just the motivation that little girl needed!

It is always awesome to me how every conference,  different talks speak directly to me.  My favorite talk this year, just because of our circumstances, and trials we have faced was THIS ONE, by Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.  He touched me with the tender way he talked about waiting upon the Lord.  Patience is something that I am not good at, but something I need to learn nonetheless if I am going to become like my Savior. I also loved THIS ONE, by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, which talked about how important we are to our Heavenly Father, and how aware he is of us, and how much he loves us each individually.  He truly is in the details of our lives, and when we stop and look, we can see His tender mercies daily in our behalf.  Another GREAT talk was by Elaine Dalton, the President of the Young Women, THIS ONE, where she talked to the fathers of the church about how they can help their daughters to reach their potential as Daughters of God.  It was an amazing talk, even better when I reread it!

We had a great picnic, and shared so many testimonies.  I am so grateful for this tradition.  I love hearing our family members, especially our children, bear testimony of the truthfulness of the messages shared during General Conference.  I love that they get to hear their cousins, aunts, uncles, Grandma and Grandpa as they bear testimony of the truthfulness of the gospel.  I am so grateful to belong to a church where we can know what the Lord would have us do in our time, in our day, to raise faithful families, and make it back to live with Him someday.  What a wonderful blessing!  Here are some pictures of all the festivities! 


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