Wednesday, December 05, 2007
We enjoy the decorations if they stay put and the lights stay on. But after Christmas we can hardly wait to take it all down and resume the normal boring life. Why do we bother?
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
This morning when I returned from my walk with the girls there was a phone message waiting. Apparently, unbeknownst to me I had been scheduled to cover a shift in urgent care at BYU in place of my being canceled by Audrey. I was already 40 minutes late and I still needed to get showered and dressed. Somewhat begrudgingly I hurried and got ready, packed a left-overs lunch and got in the car. Turned the key and nothing. Tried multiple times over the next 10 minutes with the same result. Got under the hood, jiggled some wires still nothing. Called my trusty visiting teacher to bail me out. She came quickly and drove me to the Health Center. When I arrived and explained my situation to my co-workers it suddenly occurred to me that I had a hair appointment at 2 and now I had no way to get there. My boss had said he would cover for the hour I needed to go. I think he felt bad about what had happened.
When I told him about my dilemma he offered his car for the appointment. Nice guy.
When I pulled into the hair salon my friend and stylist Robyn hurried in to apologize that the lady before me hadn't told her that she wanted her hair colored so she was double booked for that hour. But she would see what she could do to expedite my haircut. Between three of them I was finished and back to work in an hour. Things always work out. I just hope I can get a ride home from work.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Desires to be of service
and to minister to individual
needs - very loyal.
13.8% of total population.
Thursday, November 01, 2007
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Here's the rules:
A. Each player lists 6 facts/habits about themselves.
B. At the end of the post, the player then tags 6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog, for these rules.
1. I walk 5 days a week with some of my favorite people. We walk from 2-4 miles a day. Very good for the body and the soul.
2. Reading is one of my escapes. A new series I am working on is the Great and Terrible series by Chris Stewart. I have finished the 4th book and am waiting impatiently for the next one to come out.
3. Genealogy is a true passion. There is a special spirit that attends one who does this work. I try to get some time in every week to bolster my spirit.
4. A new quest is the Medical Reserve Corp which is just starting up in Utah County. I attended an organizing meeting last night and ended up on the board as a nursing specialist. Maybe I will learn some new skills.
5. Keeping up with the new grandchildren is going to become a new obsession. I can't believe I'm old enough to have grandchildren!
6. The favorite time each week is when we eat Sunday dinner and then play games together. I so enjoy my family and their entertaining ways.
So now I will tag Bus, Jethro, Matt, Jolyn, Ben Gaines and Ben Francisco. Take it and run guys. Let us hear your stories.
Sunday, October 21, 2007
President Heber J. Grant said: "There is but one path of safety to the Latter-day Saints, and that is the path of duty. It is not a testimony, it is not marvelous manifestations, it is not knowing that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true, . . . it is not actually knowing that the Savior is the Redeemer, and that Joseph Smith was His prophet, that will save you and me, but it is the keeping of the commandments of God, the living the life of a Latter-day Saint."
Think about that. Keeping the commandments. Doing your duty as a Latter Day Saint. Staying strong so the priesthood you men hold is ready for use at any time. That is what is going to save us. The other things will of course not hurt us at all. In fact, I think they serve to remind us of why we do our duties. The saving is in the righteous, obedient action.
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
It was January 1849. The Latter-day Saints in the Salt Lake Valley had survived their first winter and were now in their second one. Thanks to the gulls, they had avoided a complete crop failure, but it cannot be said that their crops in the fall harvest had been overly abundant. They were grateful for what they had.But the pressure was still on. Incoming wagon trains had boosted the population of Saints in Utah to perhaps four or five thousand, which of course meant many mouths to feed. They would have to be frugal to make their limited supplies last until the next summer.
As for lodging, you were lucky if you had a cabin. Many were still housed in cramped quarters in the fort, and of those who arrived in the fall many decided to make do by living in a dugout or in their reinforced wagon box until spring. Without good insulation, all of these habitations were often drafty, wet, and cold.
It was in this context that the community leaders organized a community pest hunt. It was not kindness-to-wild-animals time but a struggle for existence, and certain animals, identified as "noxious vermin," posed a threat. The more of these that could be eliminated, they thought, the more food would be available for the struggling humans.
To add to the enthusiasm, the leaders organized a competition between two teams, one led by John D. Lee and the other by John Pack. These two team leaders ended up by quarreling over the numbers. The hunt stretched over the month of January 1849.
And we have the total animal victims: 2 bears, 783 wolves, 409 foxes, 2 wildcats, 2 wolverines, 331 minks, 9 eagles, 530 magpies, owls and hawks, and 1026 crows.
I wonder if they had a ward dinner after this...
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I found this very interesting letter written by Orson Spencer, my great-great grandfather to the leaders of the church. He was on his way home after serving as the president of the British mission in 1849. He had left to go to England just after his wife had died in 1846 outside of Nauvoo, leaving his 6 children in Winter Quarters. They came to Salt Lake without him in the second group in 1847. He returned home with his new wife Martha Knight Spencer and their new baby Martha in the spring of 1849. The following is an excerpt of his report to the brethren about their trip on the ship Zetland and now on a steamship going up the Mississippi from New Orleans.
During the passage, we baptized one very promising young man, and confirmed more than a dozen, who were baptized after they entered the ship at
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
I'm also thankful for my oldest son Jethro who turns 28 years old today. He has been a joy to raise and now he has his own little boy to raise with his beautiful and talented wife. The circle of life is incredible.
We just returned from a band competition. Beautiful music beautifully rendered by high school students who enjoy doing hard things, making them look easy and earning praise and adoration of the parents who love them.
These are the things that make life worthwhile and good. Too bad the world newscasts like to focus on the ways a few people die instead of the worthy ways a lot of people live.
Monday, September 24, 2007
Is there any hope for me?
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
sports section/running backs was Spencer from Riverton. He has the highest yards per carry at 11. He doesn't have the highest yardage but when you look at the stats he is probably the most efficient runner. He is fun to watch.
The other item was a great obituary about a man who was the ultimate in law enforcement I knew as a child. Check out the link if you want a chuckle and an idea of what the Cedar City good ol' boys are/were like. Thespectrum.com
Look at the obituary for Kent Hoyt.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
The other part of the week that was fun was that Em was taken off her work schedule. This couldn't have happened at a better time. She was able to sleep in and clean her room on Thursday. Friday she went to class but Friday evening we went up to our Indian Canyon pleasure palace and camped out. When you first get out of the car up there you notice the piney sweetness of the place. It was very dark when we arrived at 9 p.m. There were millions of stars and some distant lightning. We quickly put out our sleeping bags in the trailer, Matt in his tent, and settled in for a long night. The next day was delightful. We ate a hearty breakfast then started a fire. Not that it was cold, it was very comfortable. We just wanted a place to gather and talk. After a while we commenced gathering firewood, Bus ran the chain saw, Matt on the ax. After 15 minutes we had more than we could carry in the truck. There are so many dead logs up there. If any readers want some free fire wood give us a call. We like excuses to go up there.
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
M E R I D I A N M A G A Z I N E
Getting From Childishness to Godliness
By H. Wallace Goddard
It is an unusual baby who arrives on the mortal scene concerned foremost about the well-being of others. Imagine a newborn saying (or acting as if to say): “Wow. I can see that all of you look very worn out. Mom, you look spent! What a struggle for you! Dad, you need a rest. Doctor, thank you for making my arrival so warm and safe. Why don’t I just relax a few hours while all of you get caught up. Let me know when you would like to visit. Maybe we can chat and have a snack in a few hours.”
As much as we are delighted with the arrival of newborns, they come with a rather different attitude. “Man! That was miserable! Do you know what I’ve just been through? And I’m not that crazy about the light and drafts here. Listen. Why don’t I scream and holler until you can figure out how to make me happy. Then maybe I’ll rest for a while. But I’ll let you know when I need something. And when I scream, I expect service.”
A Clod of Complaints
George Bernard Shaw’s words fit the newborn quite well: “A feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.” The baby may be demanding and self-centered — but we make allowances for being a brand new human.
Unfortunately our attitude doesn’t change quickly or easily as we age. Many of us in adulthood are still struggling with the same attitude. “If I’m unhappy, I intend that everyone else be miserable as well. So, if you don’t want to be tortured, get busy taking care of my needs.”
A few people break the pattern. Something is different for them. They are different from the rest of us. You know them. There is the ward member who seems to take genuine interest in people who struggle. There is the neighbor who cares for an ailing parent or a disabled child without complaint. There are those who set aside their own burdens and disappointments so that they can serve patiently and endlessly. I have been blessed by the ministering and example of many such people.
Van Wyck Brooks describes people who have moved from being narrow and contracted to being expansive: “How delightful is the company of generous people, who overlook trifles and keep their minds instinctively fixed on whatever is good and positive in the world about them. People of small caliber are always carping. They are bent on showing their own superiority, their knowledge or prowess or good breeding. But magnanimous people have no vanity, they have no jealousy, and they feed on the true and the solid wherever they find it. And, what is more, they find it everywhere.” (A Chillmark Miscellany)
I would like to be one of those magnanimous people. How do we get from the clod of complaints to noble goodness?
Ladeling from Life
Life provides each of us an experiential stew filled not only with chunks of vegetables but abundant weeds and rocks. The hodgepodge includes the intriguing, the indigestible, the enriching, and the toxic. We all eat stew from life’s general pot. Yet some are stunted while others flourish. Why is it that some extract nourishment for their goodness while others get only poison for their minds and souls?
People who have been served a bitter bowl of stew and still flourished have become iconic. Elijah turned national disgrace into personal discovery and continuing service. Corrie ten boom transformed Holocaust hate into embracing forgiveness. Frankl found meaning in the concentration camp. C. S. Lewis transformed a lonesome childhood into an embracing faith. Jesus metabolized the sins and pains of creation into the triumph of love.
There are those who have eaten from the same pot and yet are spiritually malnourished. Sigmund Freud showed the nature of his own soul when he wrote that, “I have found little that is good about human beings on the whole. In my experience most of them are trash.” A cynic would argue that Freud’s bitter assessment of humans is the result of his extensive experience with them. It seems even more likely that it is the result of his corrosive cynicism and atheism.
Throughout history there have been those who would destroy others to advance their own cause. Cain. Herod. Hitler. McVeigh. bin Laden. It is chilling to discover that we all have a little Timothy McVeigh in us. We may not be willing to destroy a whole community, but we stingily disburse our good will. At times we may even wish harm on this person or that nation.
So how do we move away from our churlish childishness and become more like those expansive people we admire? What is the key to this mighty change?
I reflected on the question as I sat in church. I thought of the complex answers about biological dispositions and environmental shaping. I thought about all the things research recommends for moral development. How can all these ideas be summarized?
The answer came quite unexpectedly. The organ began to plan and words ascended from the seekers. “I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me, confused at the grace that so fully He proffers me. I tremble to know that for me He was crucified. That for me, a sinner, He suffered, He bled, and died.”
I felt flooded with the simple truth that Jesus is the Way for any who want to move from tired self-absorption to glorious contributing. Even for those who have never heard His name, His persistent invitation to gentleness and goodness is resident in their souls. The Light of Christ.
“Oh! It is wonderful! Wonderful to me.”
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Today has been fantastic. Walking for an hour with Karen, visiting teachers, 4 hours at the red church reading old church records in German and now waiting for the apple crisp to cook so I can make another batch of banana bread, then sweet and sour pork for dinner. The best part is that there is no where to go tonight, just sit home and eat. You are all invited. No wait, stay home. I'm going to vej. Come next time.
P.S. Two mission calls today: Brian Spencer to Johannesburg and Nathan Spencer to Sao Paulo Brazil. So good. They leave the day(s) after Christmas for their respective MTCs in- country.
Friday, August 10, 2007
There were so many pots and pans to clean. But there was only one thing on my mind. I was going to see our new baby boy, Lincoln. Bus and I went over to their house and were able to hold him for a while. He is an active, alert and strong little guy. He started to fuss a little bit so we quickly handed him over to his mom. He settled right down. He is in good hands.
Thursday, August 09, 2007
Saturday, July 21, 2007
This is a new kind of blog written especially for my children so they can become acquainted with their pioneer ancestors. Others are welcome to read this but just so you know. This was written for an assignment I had to give a 7 minute report on a pioneer ancestor in Relief Society. I have pages of information copied off about her that I will gladly send to the first person who asks for it.
Mary Isabella Hales Horne
She writes about meeting the Prophet Joseph Smith for the first time. “When I shook hands with him I was thrilled through and through and I knew that he was a Prophet of God, and that testimony has never left me, but is still strong within me.” John Taylor and his wife Leonora were close friends and they and the Hornes were able to travel with the prophet to visit the branches of the church in
Isabella met the Prophet again in
On another occasion the Prophet Joseph, in company with a number of the brethren, came to
The Hornes lived in Nauvoo for four years and then prepared to go west with the saints. They left Winter Quarters in June 1847 Isabella tells of an incident that occurred on their journey west. “In the month of July, we saw a large band of Indians located on the other side of the
While the brethren were trading with the Indian men, the squaws and children were going among our wagons stealing cooking utensils or anything else they could get hold of, so that when we camped for the night we found that many useful articles were missing.
Once they reached the
Early in the spring a man came into the valley from
Isabella was the first president of the Salt Lake Stake Relief Society when it covered all of
In the fall of 1869, Isabella was issued another challenge. President Young, touring southern
Isabella took the president’s concern seriously. the Senior Retrenchment Association was organized. To help them understand the theory of the organization she served bread and butter, preserves, stewed dried apples, one kind of cake and cold water.
When Isabella was 74 years of age, she made a trip to
One of the ladies was very curious to know how polygamous families get along and pointedly asked Sister Horne if her husband was a man of many wives. “My husband has other wives,” was her reply. With eyes wide open, expressive of the greatest astonishment, the lady asked, “How did you feel?” “Just as you would feel,” replied my aunt. “I am a woman like yourself, and, but for my religious convictions, would no more have consented for my husband to take another wife than you would; but I know that the principle of plural or celestial marriage is true and from God. God has spoken from the heavens and raised up the boy prophet, Joseph Smith, to establish his kingdom on earth in these last days, and I have a testimony of the truth of these things. I have had the honor of entertaining the prophet in my own home and know that he was a man of God.”
“Well, but you don’t expect to convert US to these things?”
“Oh no madam. If we wished to convert you to our religion we would begin with the first principles, not with the highest and most exalted ones.”
Emmeline B. Wells, a long-time friend and associate said of this remarkable woman, “She was a born leader, a sort of General among women and indeed in this respect might surpass most men. Sister Horne can appropriately be called a stalwart, a champion for the rights of her own sex, and indeed for all mankind. She was undoubtedly a woman of destiny. This woman of destiny who had borne fifteen children, including three sets of twins was a much-loved mother and grandmother. I am grateful for her example.
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
"Why aren't you out fishing?" said the industrialist.
"Because I have caught enough fish for the day," said the fisherman.
"Why don't you catch some more?"
"What would I do with them?"
"You could earn more money," was the industrialist's reply. "With that you could have a motor fixed to your boat and go into deeper waters and catch more fish. Then you would make enough to buy nylon nets. These would bring you more fish and more money. Soon you would have enough money to own two boats. . . maybe even a fleet of boats. Then you would be a rich man like me."
"What would I do then?" asked the fisherman.
"Then you could really enjoy life."
"What do you think I am doing right now?"
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Sunday, June 24, 2007
Thanks for adding a colorful thread to the fabric of my life the past week. You are all so interesting and fun to be around.
Monday, June 11, 2007
This afternoon at work we were less busy and I happened upon this article that kept me fascinated in spite of its length. The link is http://pewforum.org/events/?EventID=148
Richard Bushman was interviewed and questioned by reporters from many of the nation's biggest media outlets about Mormonism. He is a master communicator. Mitt Romney's campaign has been a major impetus for people in the nation to find out about the church. This was good PR for our side. I encourage you to peruse this when you have a minute. I think he deserves our clown collar award this week.
Monday, June 04, 2007
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Last night was a highlight. There we were sitting in the Timpview commons on our smoky camp chairs with the sunlight beaming through the windows. Dr. Fullmer announces that the next performer would be none other than Billy Joel. Out comes Ben with his harmonica holder and tells the audience they should sing along with him as he plays but that he will pretend they aren't there.
He proceeds to play the exact piano notes that Billy Joel plays on his song and then the harmonica. It really sounds authentic. The audience cheers and claps. He sings his heart out the rest of the song then comes the finale. For the last chorus he points with both hands over the piano giving the audience the chance to shine. They pull through for him a capella and then everyone erupts in cheering and clapping as the song becomes the audience's song as well. It was so much fun. He was a fantastic Piano Man. Grandma was there. She was so glad she was.
The other part of the award goes to Toni. She is taking classes this term and is the lone woman in a poli-sci class with 6 men. They recently had a test. Two people got A's. Toni was one of them. You go Toni!
Monday, May 21, 2007
"One of the main problems in society today is that we spend less and
less time together. Some, even when they are together, spend an
extraordinary amount of time in front of the television, which robs them of
personal time for reinforcing feelings of self-worth. Family home
evenings give individuals and families important time to talk and listen as
parents and children, brothers and sisters, spouses, and friends. Time
together is precious--time needed to encourage and to show how to
do things. Less time together can result in loneliness, which may produce
feelings of being unsupported, untreasured, and
(James E. Faust, "Enriching Our Lives through Family Home Evening," Liahona, June 2003, 5)
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
After dinner Jethro pulled out a wad of money to generously pay them. He was fully aware and grateful for their sacrifice and hard work. They gave him back a significant amount claiming that they didn't need as much as he offered. After he left they both remarked that it wasn't about the money. It was about wanting to help a brother. Clown collars all around.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
On a lighter note, I really enjoyed Mother's Day this year. It was so nice to see everyone and eat more than was necessary. The weather was perfect. The trip to the cemetery helped me feel Dad's comforting spirit around us. I really was spoiled with great gifts. Thanks so much to my children and husband. You make being a mother very rewarding. Thanks for all the good you do.
Saturday, May 12, 2007
Brownies with a Difference
Many parents are hard pressed to explain to their youth why some music, movies, books, and magazines are not acceptable material for them to bring into the home or to listen to or see.
One parent came up with an original idea that is hard to refute. The father listened to all the reasons his children gave for wanting to see a particular PG-13 movie. It had their favorite actors. Everyone else was seeing it. Even church members said it was great. It was only rated PG-13 because of the suggestion of sex--they never really showed it. The language was pretty good--the Lord's name was only used in vain three times in the whole movie.
The teens did admit there was a scene where a building and a bunch of people were blown up, but the violence was just the normal stuff. It wasn't too bad. And, even if there were a few minor things, the special effects were fabulous and the plot was action packed.
However, even with all the justifications the teens made for the ‘13' rating, the father still wouldn't give in. He didn't even give his children a satisfactory explanation for saying, "No." He just said, "No!"
A little later on that evening the father asked his teens if they would like some brownies he had baked. He explained that he'd taken the family's favorite recipe and added a little something new. The children asked what it was.
The father calmly replied that he had added dog poop. However, he quickly assured them, it was only a little bit. All other ingredients were gourmet quality and he had taken great care to bake the brownies at the precise temperature for the exact time. He was sure the brownies would be superb.
Even with their father's promise that the brownies were of almost perfect quality, the teens would not take any. The father acted surprised. After all, it was only one small part that was causing them to be so stubborn. He was certain they would hardly notice it. Still the teens held firm and would not try the brownies.
The father then told his children how the movie they wanted to see was just like the brownies. Our minds are leading us into believing that just a little bit of evil won't matter. But, the truth is even a little bit of poop makes the difference between a great treat and something disgusting and totally unacceptable.
The father went on to explain that even though the movie industry would have us believe that most of today's movies are acceptable fare for adults and youth, they are not.Now, when this father's children want to see something that is of questionable material, the father merely asks them if they would like some of his special dog poop brownies. That closes the subject.
Thursday, April 05, 2007
In celebration I am going to share with you my hot fudge sauce recipe.
1 can evaporated milk
1 cube margarine or butter
1 c. chocolate chips (semi-sweet is my fave)
Mix these together in a large sauce pan over medium heat and stir until everything is melted.
Then add 2 cups powdered sugar and 2 tbl karo syrup and stir often if not constantly for 8-10 minutes. The longer you cook it the thicker it gets. It also gets thicker as it cools. After cooking it to your desired thickness take off heat and add 1 tbl vanilla. Stores in the fridge for a month.
Monday, March 26, 2007
John Hatch started the Village Banking model of microfinance in 1984 while on a flight to Bolivia. He said it was the double bourbon that gave him the insight for this new idea in dealing with the poverty situation in the world. FINCA is the result of his idea and with other NGO's (non-governmental organizations) who do a similar service have reached 100 million of the world's poorest families. There are only 160 million left needing assistance. One of the interesting things he told us during the workshop last week is that the poorest of the poor who FINCA would like to serve will not come to them for help. They are scared of starting a business and having that responsibility. I feel their pain. I have the same fear. But that is for another blog. The point I would like to make here is that we have made excellent headway in solving the world's poverty problem and there is a goal by some to end all poverty by the year 2025.
The plan hatched to reach this goal by some former BYU student interns with FINCA calls for us to cut back on our consumption 1% and give $1 per day to their organization called ASAP. ASAP is an acronym for Alliance of Students Against Poverty. This would amount to one less soda or other treat a day. If only 2 million people would do this for 10 years they could reach their goal of raising 7 billion dollars to stamp out poverty. ASAP, which is just starting up, will research all of the current NGOs out there who are doing microfinance and support the most efficient ones with the money they raise. I like the idea. What do you think?
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Sunday, February 11, 2007
Monday, February 05, 2007
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
I'm pretty sure the extra money isn't worth the coma-state that is produced by the extra hours. What a relief it will be to get back to the old routine.
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