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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Tender Mercies

I love the little things that happen that are proof that Heavenly Father cares about each of us.

Maybe you're like me and sometimes feel a little sheepish asking for things that could appear to be inconsequential - and actually are - when compared to really big things. But I ask anyway. And I love the reward ... little prayers being answered mean to me that He is aware of me. That feels good. This week I've been wondering about proceeding with a certain project. This morning an email popped up in my inbox from someone asking specifically about that project - someone I hadn't heard from in months. That was an answer for me, that I should proceed. Two big things here: Heavenly Father heard my prayer. It was answered through a person who was in-tune enough to follow a prompting to ask me about it. Wow. I hope sometimes I can be that person for others who need answers.

PS - that wreath .. made from dollar store materials. Total cost: $4

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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Mom, Interrupted

10 years ago Lana Viehweg's beautiful life ended, leaving behind a loving husband and nine tender-hearted children.

To honor their mother, her children are now hoping to share Lana's story with the world. Please take a moment to read a synopsis of Mom, Interrupted and purchase a copy if you'd like. Guaranteed to tug at your heart-strings, this true story is at once beautiful and sad.

I read this a couple of years ago, and to participate in honoring Lana I'm starting in on it again tonight. I'd love to hear what you think when you read it, so drop me a line and I'll pass it on to the family.

Go Here to read the synopsis and to order the book.

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Monday, October 21, 2013

Healthy No-Bakes. It's True!

I love healthy eating. And I LOVE dark chocolate. So I tweaked a no-bake-cookies recipe and came up with this:

In saucepan melt together:
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 cup sugar (yes - I believe in sugar. If you're going to have sweets, have sweets!)
1/2 cup dark cocoa powder

Bring to a boil, and boil for one minute then turn heat off. Add:
1 tsp pure vanilla
1 full cup chunky all-natural peanut butter
Stir till pb is completely melted then add:
3 1/3 cups flaked oats
Mix thoroughly and drop by spoonful onto foil.

Refrigerate. YUM.
These have a delightful coconut flavor. You'll love them!

You're welcome.

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Sunday, October 20, 2013


This was written by my "little brother", Michael. We're just 15-months apart in age and we literally grew up together. When we were teenagers, Michael was my very best friend. I love this guy. Just so you know who's writing, below is first, a picture of us as little kids (Michael's on the far right, I'm on the far left) and a picture of us now (we're standing in the middle).

Now, pull out a tissue and enjoy:


He watched with wonder, the kind only a child can have, as his ladybug crawled in and out of his fingers and over his hand. Suddenly, without warning - - - she was gone! He searched and searched, but his Ladybug was nowhere to be found. Then he remembered. His chubby little 3 year old legs took him over to his swing set. He knelt down beside it; folding his arms he rested them on a swing - and prayed. When he opened his eyes there she was, waiting to crawl back onto his hand.

He was a Freshman at college, a newly ordained Elder. A phone call came asking that he and his Home Teaching Companion administer to a young woman who was ill. They rushed to her Dorm, but then doubt and fear surfaced. He was shaking - could he do it? Then he remembered. He excused himself, went into another room and prayed, then returned and pronounced the Lord’s blessing upon her. He had found his Ladybug.

He was alone in the Hospital room with his Father. All of his family had been called to travel great distances to see their Dad one more time, as he was near death. He felt prompted to pronounce a blessing, promising his father full recovery - - - No. He shouldn’t take that upon himself, he must wait for a brother to arrive, and also ask his Mother who should seal the anointing. The next morning, as he and his brothers gave their father yet another blessing, he was able to pronounce the Lord’s promise upon their Father - - - full recovery. He had found his Ladybug.

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Friday, October 18, 2013

things I've learned from my daughter

Whenever I start to doubt my success as a mother, I take just a moment to reflect on the amazing adults my children have become. It may have nothing at all to do with my mothering, but it does help me forget my mistakes as I find myself learning and growing from their examples. I just returned from spending a few months near my grown daughter. The list of important, truly important things I learned from her would fill a book. Things like: "my family is my world"; "my home is sacred", "I can make peace by being the first to ask forgiveness", "make time to play each day" ... and on and on. She is wise beyond her 20-something years!

Today, though I want to focus on just one little temporal thing I learned from her. It's simple, really. And probably most people do it. It was just really neat to see it in action and watch the results. Each week she'd create a simple dinner menu. And then and this is the trick! stick to it. Brooke is a meticulous budgeter. One would think they paid no attention to grocery budget by the amazing meals she serves, but it's really because of her habit of careful planning. So this is our first week home. We've been gone for several months so there was really no food in the house. I did as Brooke taught by example and created a menu, then shopped for that menu rather than hunger-shopping. As a result, this was our dinner last night:

I call it "Spaghetti Squash Fall Festival". Served warm, it's seasoned with salt, pepper, curry powder and chili powder with just a small swirl of olive oil. I added fresh chopped scallions and 2 nice sized tomatoes. Then shavings of Romano Cheese. Which brings me to another very practical thing I learned from Brooke: Buy a big triangle of hard cheese (parmesan, romano, etc) and add a few shavings created from a potato pealer. This is WAY less expensive than buying grated cheese. Plus, it looks a lot fancier. I served some homemade bread with this which brought the total cost of this Meal-For-3 to $3.17. BAM

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Thursday, October 17, 2013


James 3:2 For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

This one verse in James, which has struck me as important in the past, has taken on different meaning for me recently. I think on it several times a day. I remember in the past thinking that one can know he/she has mastered oneself - and perfected all other aspects, when only good comes out of his/her mouth. I've understood this scripture to mean that the words we speak are indicative of how imperfect or how perfect we are. But this time, I've come to understand it differently. I'm wondering if it can work in reverse. In other words, if I can perfect my words, will everything else follow? My thoughts, my heart, my actions? Because perfecting my words seems much less monumental and daunting than perfecting everything else! And it's so measurable! There's no justifying or gray areas with words. They either uplift or downgrade; they are truth or lies; they are profane or pure; they are light-minded or sober. So as I thought on this, I determined to work on it. WOW. I've learned SO much about myself this last week!
1: I've learned that "word" means not only what I speak, but also what I write.
2: I've learned that there's a whole lot more that we say that is offensive than just swear words.
I determined to stop and think before EVERYTHING I say. This has caused me to be pretty quiet this week. I honestly had no idea that I spoke so offensively until I started on this trek. There have been so many times that I opened my mouth only to quickly shut it before words escaped. As I've prayed for help in this, I've been so grateful to see that there are words I start to say that, although true, do not uplift. Words that embarass. Words that are light-minded. There have been so many times this week when I've had entire conversations in my head trying to figure out the best way to get a point across without offending. It's been an entertaining and enlightening experience! At the end of a couple of these days I've felt really, really good as I've reported my actions in prayer. But most of the days I've had to repent and ask for forgiveness and for help to do better the next day. Actually, most of the days I've been blessed to recognize my error just after I let words slip out of my mouth and I've been blessed to be able to start the repentance process right then. But the times when I've done well have really paid off. I've seen clearly the results of speaking only uplifting words.

I love how Heavenly Father works with us, and how all of Heaven seems to join forces to bring about good. I'm so grateful I was working on my "words" for a few days before coming home. And I hope that as I continue this quest that my "very nature will be changed" as I use the Atonement to speak only holy, uplifting, positive words.

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Sunday, October 6, 2013


I'm currently visiting my parents in Texas (YAY!). Anyone else feel like a kid again when you're with your parents? Even with my husband and daughter with me it's different. I feel so .... I don't know ... maybe protected when I'm in my parents' home. I love it here.

Anyway, while visiting with my Mom she showed me an app on her iPad that she really enjoys. LDS Bible Videos.

This is an app that all Christians will love. Your denomination doesn't matter ... simply and beautifully the short videos convey the Spirit of the Bible. Being Sunday, I wanted to share this with you. I know you'll love it. Oh. PS: It's free.

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