Sunday, February 26, 2017

General Conference Discussion Group



Once a month, some friends gather to "Talk of Christ". We have been discussing a session of General Conference at each gathering, and I can't tell you how much I have loved it. 

Sisters love to talk and gather.  As Neill F. Marriott said in April, 2016 ("What Shall We Do?"):

"We also build the kingdom when we speak up and testify of truth. We follow the Lord’s pattern. He speaks and teaches with power and authority of God. Sisters, we can too. Women generally love to talk and gather! As we work by delegated priesthood authority given to us, our talking and gathering grow into gospel teaching and leading."



I have been a part of several Book Clubs in the past, which I thoroughly enjoyed.  

This puts a new spin on the book club idea.

Participants only need to read a few pages of material to be ready for the next discussion.
(this is nice for busy moms who are barely keeping their heads above water!)

All of the sisters have a witness of living Prophets and Apostles, and we are eager to "sit at their feet" and be taught.

Everyone can share their feelings regarding the principles taught in a particular talk.  We share favorite quotes and life experiences that relate.

Sometimes, the Spirit will take us in a direction we didn't plan.  We share our struggles with each other.  We laugh and have treats (of course!). We testify of things we've learned. 

It is so soul satisfying, to attend these meetings.  I come away absolutely filled to the brim, and running over!  

I highly recommend an experience like this, as a mother striving to prepare her children for the Second Coming of the Savior. 

Luke 6:38

Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.



My Congregation

Bonded

Not by mortal blood, but by worship.

We sit together and honor Thee, Father.

Hallowed

      be thy name.

We Share

our insights, fears, deepest vulnerabilities, and triumphs.

We Seek

answers to our questions, solutions to our problems, healing for our hidden wounds.

We Serve

each other in love, lifting the hands which hang down, teaching and giving to each other our hearts.

We See

one another week after week, watching changes that occur as we together reach upward.

We are family.

Bonded by blood?

yes.

The blood of our Savior.



Monday, February 13, 2017

Plan of Salvation

Brinley taught us of the Plan of Salvation for her lesson, showing that Heavenly Father's plan spells out LOVE for all of us! 

And then we played the Dead Fish Game.


She did a great job teaching!

Monday, February 6, 2017

On Compassion

If there is one thing we try to do each week, it is to hold Family Home Evening.  The other day, I listened to an interview in which a woman talked about how grateful she was that her mother kept a record, or minutes, of their home evenings.  I thought I'd share a few pictures from some we've had this year.  I love my family and enjoy Monday nights, even if it is just a brief event. 
 Nathan had us draw papers with situations on them.  We were to consider what it would be like to have these struggles and how we could help people in these situations.



 Having Levi imagine being blind.
Nathan helped us think of others, and how to be good brothers and sisters on this earth.

Years ago, when I was teaching seminary full time, I had a student who was struggling.  I was speaking with her mom over the phone one day, and I learned so much from the conversation.  She said, in essence: "When our kids were little, I thought I had to do fancy Family Home Evening lessons, and so when I didn't prepare something spectacular, we would skip it.  I wish now that I would have had home evening, no matter what.  I wish we would have just read a little something out of the Friend magazine and not felt like it had to be a production".  Her words have really blessed me many times, when we have just thrown something together and enjoyed one another's company.  In fact, sometimes the more casual the setting, the better!

This makes me think of a statement from Elder Bednar about leaving room for the Holy Ghost to direct the experience:

"Inviting children as gospel learners to act and not merely be acted upon builds on reading and talking about the Book of Mormon and bearing testimony spontaneously in the home. Imagine, for example, a family home evening in which children are invited and expected to come prepared to ask questions about what they are reading and learning in the Book of Mormon—or about an issue that recently was emphasized in a gospel discussion or spontaneous testimony in the home. And imagine further that the children ask questions the parents are not prepared adequately to answer. Some parents might be apprehensive about such an unstructured approach to home evening. But the best family home evenings are not necessarily the product of preprepared, purchased, or downloaded packets of outlines and visual aids. What a glorious opportunity for family members to search the scriptures together and to be tutored by the Holy Ghost. “For the preacher was no better than the hearer, neither was the teacher any better than the learner; … and they did all labor, every man according to his strength” (Alma 1:26).
David A. Bednar, "Watching with All Perseverance", April 2010 General Conference 

I am grateful for what Nathan taught us about compassion on that night. And I am so grateful for prophets, who counsel us to gather in our homes each week and teach each other.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Taco the Turtle was not a turtle. Or Taco.

 We were in our garage one day and I looked down and saw a lawn ornament!  I had not purchased such a thing (being somewhat leery of lawn ornaments...) and then, the thing moved!  A turtle had somehow found its way into our garage!  I was so excited!  The family gathered around to stare at it.



 It is sincerely one of the coolest animals I have ever watched!  We were so curious as to its origin and ownership.  In the meantime, we named it Taco and played with it for a little while.  I posted pictures on facebook and learned that the owner was from across the street, and that it was actually a really old tortoise named Herkimer.


 We babysat the little guy overnight until we could get a hold of our neighbors. 

 When my neighbor Sally came over to pick up her cute pet, she told me that Herkimer is 70 years old and will probably live to be over 100!  Herkimer was a class pet in her aunt's elementary school classroom.  Her aunt left Sally the tortoise to raise.  Only a few years ago, Sally learned that Herkimer is actually a girl (female tortoises have flat tummies and males have concave ones). 
So, that was our adventure with Herkimer, the female, old, beautiful tortoise.

A day at the creek...
















Saturday, June 7, 2014

A day at the pool...







Some cool things about this day:

There weren't many people at Downata Hot Springs.
The weather was perfect.
I laughed and laughed with my kids as we went down the water slides.
I ran into an old friend.
I ran into my aunt Carol, and we had a good sit and chat while my children played with her grandchildren.
There was a little kiddie pool which Levi thought he owned enjoyed.
I didn't spend any money on special snacks; just packed what I had around the kitchen and pantry, and we were fine.  Apples, crackers, peanut butter, string cheese, and a 6 pack of Sprite which I had found for 99 cents at a convenience store!