Monday, November 30, 2009

In addition to the last post

Here's some words to a hymn that I love and tell how I feel about those friends and family around me.

"Each Life That Touches Ours for Good"

Each life that touches ours for good reflects thine own great mercy, Lord; Thou sendest blessings from above thru words and deeds of those who love. What greater gift dost thou bestow, what greater goodness can we know than Christlike friends, whose gentle ways strengthen our faith, enrich our days...

End of the month

It's the end of gratitude month and the daily posts, but hopefully I'll still think about what I'm grateful for each day. It has been a great experience. I have so many things to be grateful for - I knew it wouldn't be hard to think of 30 things I'm grateful for. I barely scratched the surface. But it was hard thinking about that day's events and how the hand of God had touched me that day. I appreciate those who did this with me - my mom, Krista, Michelle, Jill, Liberty. Did I forget anyone? I have really enjoyed reading your posts. And I'm thankful to those who followed along. I'm thankful for wonderful friends!

Good neighbor

I'm thankful for our wonderful neighbor Betsy. She noticed that we were gone this week and took the initiative to pick up our mail for us. She is always watching out for us, bringing us homemade bread, bringing presents for the boys birthdays or for new babies, and she is a great example of hard work. We see her working in her yard all the time - I know the boys see her doing that too. They wanted to rake leaves too after Betsy had done so. She makes me want to be a better neighbor and to work harder.

Extended family

I'm thankful for my aunts and uncles, cousins, and grandparents. I don't have a picture of everyone that we saw over Thanksgiving, but I'm grateful for each of them. We saw my aunt Angela, uncle John (my dad's brother), and cousin Enola on Friday. They made a wonderful Mexican dinner for us, complete with homemade salsa and brownies. Yummy! We also got a kick out of the hula hoop and enjoyed singing. We don't get to see them nearly often enough.

We stayed a few nights with Gary, Quin, and Braden. I'm grateful to them for their hospitality and also for watching the boys while we went to the temple. We enjoyed pizza on Wednesday night with them, my cousin Justin, GG, and uncle Doug. We also went "turkey bowling" with them on Thanksgiving morning. We had pizza at CiCi's, watched football, and played games at their place on Saturday night.


GG - we tried to get a picture! Doug - Thanks for being courageous and sitting next to Owen at Famous Dave's BBQ and sharing the huge brownie a la mode with us...

Special thanks also goes to Grandpa Bob and Mary Ann for paying for our Thanksgiving dinner (Doug may have helped too?) - and also for hosting all of us at their house on Thursday and Friday. It was great to see everyone! I just wish we had some more time... and we missed Mike and Carrie!

-

Parents

Just wanted to mention something that would have been Friday's gratitude post. The day after Thanksgiving, all of the little kids and big kids, plus my dad (the biggest kid...) played football and kickball in the morning. We had a great time. I appreciate how my dad loves sports and how he'll probably be playing right along with us until we have to wheel him around the field (which, by the way, will not be anytime soon - he still has a lot of spunk left in him). The other thing that I was grateful for, which wasn't just Friday, was my parents willingness to watch the kids for us. It gets a little tricky with little kids who need to go to bed early to play games or hang out in the evening hours. My mom stayed with Jaden and Hailey in their motel room, and my dad stayed with our boys while the big kids played cards until 1:30am. I really appreciate that and know that was a sacrifice for them. They would have enjoyed hanging out too, but sacrificed for "the team". Thanks Mom and Dad! I love you.

In-laws


I'm playing catch-up on some posts. I missed an important post a few days ago. It was my sister-in-law Carrie's birthday on Thanksgiving Day. Happy Birthday Carrie! I'm thankful for my in-laws and what they have brought to our family, particularly in bringing so much joy to each of my siblings. I also appreciate the "spice" that each of them bring with their personalities to make for fun times. Thanks Carrie, Sam, Micah, and Daniel! I'm also thankful for Alex's brother Jim, who is Alex's best friend, and has always been very accepting of me into their family. What a blessing it is to have good relationships with all of my in-laws!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

family

I've missed a few days because we've been busy spending time with family. No time for much blogging or sleeping - just a full few days with family. It's been wonderful. I'm so thankful for my family. On Thanksgiving, as part of our meal, we shared things that we were thankful for. It was hard to stop the "happy tears," realizing all of the many blessings we have been given. And I couldn't think of anywhere else I'd rather be than with family. I'll post some pictures later...

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Cheeto

Gary & Quin gave Owen a new nickname - Cheeto! He loves cheese puffs...

snow!

Just a few pictures from playing in the snow. The boys had a great time throwing snowballs - I tried to stay out of it... This was also Big O's first time to see snow. I don't think he liked it much, but enjoyed spectating.








temples

I'm thankful for temples - Alex & I had the opportunity to go to the Denver Temple this morning. It's a special place - we got married here just over 9 years ago. I'm grateful for the significance of our temple marriage, for all that means. Temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints stand as a testimony of the immortality of the soul. I love this quote by President Hinckley:

“Every temple that this Church has built has in effect stood as a monument to our belief in the immortality of the human soul, that this phase of mortal life through which we pass is part of a continuous upward climb, so to speak, and that as certain as there is life here, there will be life there. That is our firm belief. It comes about through the Atonement of the Savior, and the temple becomes, as I have indicated, the bridge from this life to the next. The temple is concerned with things of immortality. We wouldn’t have to build a temple for marriages if we didn’t believe in the eternity of the family. We build it so the family may be eternal. All of the ordinances which take place in the house of the Lord become expressions of our belief in that fundamental and basic doctrine. The temple therefore becomes the ultimate in our system of worship and therefore is of great and significant importance to us” (interview with Vern Anderson of the Associated Press, 20 Apr. 1999). There's also a good talk here.

For Alex and me, this is where it all started.



Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Safe travel

I'm thankful to have traveled safely today and to be here at my aunt and uncle's house. It was a long day, but the boys did well and we made it. My vacation begins when I'm there, not when I get in the car, so now my vacation can begin!

Monday, November 23, 2009

medicine

I'm thankful that we were able to take Owen to the doctor today, especially before our trip, because he has a double ear infection. I'm thankful for medicine to clear those up, and hopefully he will be back to his happy self before long. He really has been quite the trooper considering he probably feels awful.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Restful Sunday

Today I stayed home from church with Owen and Nathan. Nathan slept in until 9:00am - he's usually up at 7:15am. He was coughing quite a bit last night, although he seemed okay after he woke up. Owen was the one who threw up yesterday, and I'm grateful that he didn't today. He still has something wrong with him - he was crying whether I held him or not this morning. Alex gave him a priesthood blessing of comfort (maybe more for my peace of mind) and Owen took a good morning nap after that. The rest of the day he wasn't too bad. I'm thinking it could be his ears? Anyway, I actually did get quite a bit of rest today, and I'm thankful for that, because tomorrow we'll be busy trying to get everything ready for our trip.

On a side note, Jared went to church with Alex and sat up on the stand with him. Apparently he was the model child up there - I'm thankful that he was a good boy, and I'm also thankful that he's healthy.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Lack of Boredom

I'm thankful that we're rarely bored around here. There's always things to be done, and I can't ever get through my "list." There's not time to sit around and watch TV (if we had TV), I don't have to surf the internet all day, and I don't have time to sit around. Instead, there's muffins to be made and delivered, invitations to do for church, dishes, grocery shopping, taking the boys to McDonald's and the library, getting things ready for our trip next week, making dinner, cleaning up puke, getting kids clean and in bed. Those are a few of the things that I did today, and never once was I bored. Nope, I'll leave that for you, when you read this post...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Spirit, peace

This video gets me every time... I watched it again this morning, and I'm grateful for the peaceful feelings that I got. I know that's the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of God, the Comforter - whatever you want to call it - testifying of a true principle of service and compassion. (And I had a new inspiration... that's another post for a later time.) I've felt that peaceful, guiding influence in my life so many times. Sometimes we take it for granted, but it really is a wonderful gift.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A Cowgirl night out

I'm thankful for free tickets to the OSU vs. Colorado football game tonight - a not often enough night out. I'm also thankful that someone was able to watch the boys, and I think Owen did well for her. Alex had a prior commitment, so I took a friend with me to the game. The weather wasn't too bad - we stayed warm and had a good time. It was a little crazy in the 2nd half, but OSU pulled off the win. I actually didn't REALLY care if OSU won - I just wanted to see a good game. And we got one.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

leftovers

I'm thankful for leftovers - I don't know how I'd make it without them. I've never enjoyed cooking - I just do it because I have to. If I had to prepare a meal every day, I'd go crazy. I'm thankful that half the week is leftovers, and I'm glad that Alex and the boys don't mind that. But I guess they'd go hungry if they didn't eat whatever I put in front of them... yesterday and tonight was fettucine alfredo. It's still good the 2nd night!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

cavities

I had to mention something else that I enjoyed today... Alex went to the dentist today and discovered he had a cavity. When he got home, his mouth was still numb from the filling. This was his 1st experience with this, so he didn't know what it was like. "I can't talk right. How am I supposed to go back to work like this? I'm drooling. How long is this supposed to last? Will it hurt after the numbness wears off?"

I know this is terrible, but I just had to smile because he's always bragged about no cavities, surely due to his stellar brushing and flossing skills. Well, I'm glad that he finally got a cavity. When I've had fillings done, he's never understood what's it's like to have a numb mouth and offered no sympathy. In fact, I know he was thinking that I didn't brush my teeth well. I just appreciate him getting to experience some of these little things every once in a while. Now, if only he knew what pregnancy or child birth was like... They'll never understand or appreciate what we sacrifice for that!

Visiting teachers

I'm thankful for my visiting teachers, who come to visit me faithfully every month. They came this evening, and I always enjoy talking to them and sharing the latest drama. I appreciate their consistency. I also love that they can hook me up with tickets to OSU football and basketball games! Now I just need to find someone to watch the boys... where's grandma when you need her?

Monday, November 16, 2009

11 months

video

Big O is walking everywhere now! One of his favorite things to do is throw the ball and then go get it. I wish we had sound with the video - he gets really excited.

Tithing

For Family Home Evening tonight, we talked about tithing. We had fun making cookies - the boys counted out 10 chocolate chips and then set 1 aside. We did that several times... After the cookies were done baking, we did the same thing, setting aside 1/10th.

Stocking hats and Creativity

Whew! It was cold today! The first thing I'm thankful for is a stocking hat and a heater. I wore my stocking hat all day today... maybe tomorrow we'll make it warmer than 67 inside! We just felt cold. I couldn't even bring myself to take a shower today - I couldn't stand the thought of being wet... I'm thankful that I didn't have to go anywhere today, so it wasn't the worst thing being unshowered! :)

Anyway, maybe my hat sparked my creativity today - with my "hot head," I came up with and completed invitations for Owen's birthday party. It's ball-themed since he loves balls. I thought they turned out cute - they're supposed to look like a bucket with balls in it. There are 3 balls that can be pulled out of the "bucket". The picture of Owen is on the back of the poem, which you might be able to read it if you click on the picture. I've got my mom to thank for the creativity - she can do just about anything with paper, cardboard, toilet paper rolls, etc. I think I got a few of those creative genes, and I'm grateful for that.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Good kids, good husband and dad

It wasn't hard to think about what I'm thankful for today. At church, we always get compliments from people about how good our boys are. And today was no exception. Nathan usually gets a "CTR shield" to turn in for a reward - they get them for being reverent, a good example, a good helper, Choosing The Right. Nathan also is the kid that they can put next to the "problem kids, " can ask to say a prayer or scripture at the last minute and he does it, and always listens and cooperates. I also don't worry about leaving Nathan and Jared in the pew by themselves for a little while when I have to take Owen out (Alex is on the stand with the bishopric). Everyone always tells me how good they were while I was gone, how they just colored or sat there and played. And today, I was again told how fun Jared was to have in nursery - they said he just does his own thing and doesn't ever throw a fit. He just does whatever he's told and is an easy kid. I don't know how we got so lucky to have such great boys, but I'm so grateful for it. They still have their moments, but really are such great kids. When they got home, Nathan immediately asked if he could take out the trash or clean up his room. They talked about that today in primary and were supposed to think of ways to serve at home. He cleaned his room this afternoon.

Another thing that I love about our boys - they aren't picky eaters. They eat most anything that I put in front of them. One thing that all 3 of them like is steamed broccoli. Now that is something to be thankful for! We had broccoli cheese soup tonight and they loved it. Another thing that they love is grape tomatoes. I remember going to a pizza buffet once, and Nathan ate just about all the tomatoes they had. He is definitely our healthiest eater - he still eats 3 apples a day (and I mean down to the core). They're great - I love my boys!





I also am very thankful for Alex. Today, he played with the boys for a long time this afternoon while I took a nap. The boys know who the fun person is around here and always look forward to him getting home from work every day. I like to try to relax on Sundays, and I know that Alex likes to do the same, but he sacrifices for the "team". He also worked really hard on our bathroom remodel yesterday and is nearly finished. I'm thankful to have a hard-working husband and he is such a great dad for our kids.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

church organization

This will be a long post. I'll be impressed if you hang in there... I think it will be worth it though.

I am very grateful for the organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This morning I had a meeting at church, specifically to help and instruct me in my calling at church. I serve with the primary children (3-11) and it is such a blessing. I love to be able to receive training for our teaching and responsibilities in the church.

Let me try to explain about the organization in our church, for those of you not familiar, because the organization is one of the things that is really amazing. Depending on where you live, you are assigned to a congregation, called a ward. The more church members in your area, the more wards you may have. If the church membership of the area is small, it may be what's called a branch. We have 2 family wards and 1 student (singles) ward here in our town. Each of the wards has a bishop that presides over the ward and members hold positions, which they are called to through the bishop. Within the ward, there is the Relief Society (women's organization), the Primary (children's org., includes nursery, ages 18 months-3 years), the Elders Quorum and High Priest (men's org.), and the Young Women and Young Men ( ages 12-18), and adult Sunday School. There are some other special classes or programs, but those are the main ones. Everyone has the opportunity to serve in some capacity within the church (and that is really a blessing). Within those organizations, there are presidencies (a president, 2 counselors, and a secretary to help with record keeping). The bishop also has counselors (Alex is a counselor in the bishopric). I currently serve as the 1st counselor in the primary, but I've also had the opportunity to be a pianist, a counselor in the Relief Society and Young Women's, girls camp leader, visiting teaching supervisor, ward music chairperson, ward missionary, etc. Your calling changes from time to time, depending on inspiration from the bishop. There are no paid positions, including the bishop. His position, serving in the nursery, the organist, cleaning the building - whatever it might be - is all volunteer. And I love that, because you know that no one is motivated by money.

All of the wards in a particular geographical area are part of what is called a stake. I think there are 9 wards and 3 branches in our stake. And a stake is led by a president and his counselors. The stake presidency presides over all of the wards and organizations within that stake (thus a much greater responsibility). Just as there are presidencies at the ward level, there are presidencies at the stake level. They oversee all of the ward presidencies. (I had the chance to serve as stake primary 1st counselor for a little while, traveling to some of the different towns here in this area.)

Today was a "stake primary meeting" which means that the primary presidencies from the wards (congregations) in our stake met and received instruction from the stake primary presidency and the stake presidency. (Alex also had bishopric training meeting today). Our stake president and one of his counselors spoke to us, as well as the stake primary president. I'll tell some more about that instruction in a minute - let me finish with the organizational part. The stake presidency is guided and called by the quorum of the 70 and the First Presidency of the church, which is led by the prophet. Currently our prophet is Thomas S. Monson, and he has a presidency and 12 apostles that serve with him. They serve as prophets, seers, and revelators, and acting with Jesus Christ at the head of the church. Everything they do comes as inspiration from God. Our church website explains it much better, if you want to look at it here . We meet twice a year for general conference, which is a broadcast to the entire church membership throughout the world.

One of the great blessings of the organization of the church is that the organization and curriculum are the same no matter where you go. Whether you go to Australia, New Zealand, California, Utah, Colorado, Texas, Chile, Bulgaria, Belgium, Finland, Brazil, South Africa, etc. etc. - wherever the church is organized, it will be the same. While the teaching methods may be a little different or the lesson schedule may be off by a week or so, it is the same doctrine and the same curriculum. This month in primary, the theme is "My family and I can serve others" and we have weekly gospel principles. Primaries throughout the world will probably be learning tomorrow in sharing time about "I can be a good example for my family". We don't have to worry about whether we agree with the doctrine taught or if we agree with the bishop - the doctrine and organization are the same no matter where you go.

Another blessing is that most anywhere you go, you can find a ward or branch and have an "instant family". When we went to Australia, we were able to easily look up on-line or in the phone book the wards in the area and find the nearest one. When my brother went to Capetown, South Africa, they had a ward family and served in the ward. When we move to CA, we'll be able to jump right in and have a ward family there for us. If we want, we could probably have people there waiting on our doorstep to help us move in, with meals lined up, and ready to help out with the kids and new baby. And we'll be able to receive a calling in that ward soon after we get there. Serving is a wonderful way to meet people and make friends quickly. When we moved back to OK, we had several people show up, many of whom we had never met, to help us move in. What a blessing! I know many of you have experienced the same thing.

Now... just a tidbit from the instruction this morning...
We serve under the direction of the priesthood (this great organization with bishops, leaders, stake presidents, apostles, and prophets). Under the direction of the priesthood, we receive rights, privileges, and power for our callings and we have a responsibility to use those. We can change our characters and very natures to be able to minister to those we have stewardship over. "Whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies." One example was shared in which we become the Lord's instrument: Just as you can focus the power of the sun through a magnifying glass and produce intense heat (even a fire), so can we become the lens through which we may teach with the power of the SON. We can magnify our callings by focusing on the Spirit and the teachings of Jesus Christ and spark that fire in others. What a blessing and responsibility we have to teach and serve! I know that the Lord will help us magnify our callings if we study and pray with diligence and purpose. I'm thankful to all those who have taught and served me. I've received wonderful instruction throughout my life from church teachers and leaders. And I'm grateful to have received some today.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Unexpected blessings and trials...

...is what I'm thankful for and the possibility of delaying our move to CA by a couple of months.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Angels Among Us

Well, the day is not over yet, and I had one additional evidence of the hand of the Lord in my life. As soon as I got done posting my previous post, the song that came on my playlist (randomly) was "Angels Among Us" - I know that must be true. I can almost see them cheering me on, and what a blessing it is to realize that we're not alone on our mortal journey. We have angels round about us to bear us up!

photos, family history, sacred responsibilities

I was looking through some pictures today and came across one of Alex's paternal grandmother. She had red hair like me (and Nathan - he's in the picture below), and I think because of that, we had an instant connection. She had a bit of an ornery personality too - she was great. She loved to hear me play the piano. She wrote letters to us, and I remember her always telling Alex to take care of me. I'm thankful that I got to spend some time with her. Of Alex's grandparents, she was the one that I spent the most time with.


She passed away on November 3, 2006. I played "God Be With You 'Til We Meet Again" on the piano at her funeral service. Thinking about her got me thinking about the family that I have married into. It's not easy to adjust to a new family, but I'm very thankful for Alex's family and their kindness and acceptance of me. And thank you John and Fay for raising such a great son! My first Thanksgiving (see pic below) after Alex and I were married was at his paternal grandparents house.

His grandpa wasn't doing very well, but I did get to meet him before he passed away in 2002.

I also got to meet Alex's maternal grandparents. His maternal grandmother was bedridden and she couldn't talk to us. But I remember singing songs to her, hoping that she would be able to hear us and know a little bit about who I was. I sensed that she could feel our spirit and I can't wait to actually meet her again someday. Alex's maternal grandpa passed away in April 2007 - he also had an ornery personality and loved to write letters to us. Often he would re-use the back of something else. One time, on the back of his letter, was a response to a letter he had written to Teen Magazine. He complained that there weren't more cars in the magazine. They responded saying that their main audience was teens, but they did include a copy of a magazine that had a girl sitting on a car on the cover... I wish we could have spent more time with him.

I also feel a great sense of responsibility of carrying on their line. Right now, Alex and I have the sole responsibility for that (there's still hope for you Jim...). Alex has one brother (not married yet) and no cousins. We're it for this portion of the line... I am taking that role very seriously though...

Feeling a bit of the Spirit of Elijah (see this talk called "Hearts Bound Together for more about that) and a connection to the people who went before me, I went to look at some more pictures. Alex's Aunt Jane sent most of these to us - it is really neat to think about where we came from, or in this case how Alex came to be. Here's a look at his dad's side:

4 generation photo with Alex, his dad, grandma, and Nathan
A younger picture of his dad, John
Alex's grandma Ruth and grandpa Gerald Edward (Gerald was 3 of 4 kids) - on a side note, this is where Jared's name (Jared Edward) came from, but there are more Edwards in the line.

Gerald's parents (Alex's great grandparents) - Edith and Clarence
(Clarence was 7 of 8 kids. Yeah for 7th borns!)
Clarence's parents (Alex's great great grandparents) - Martha Ellen and Edward (they had 8 children: Edward, Sarah, Charles, Clifford, Susie, Alta, Clarence, and Grant)
Alex and Jim with his parents and grandparentsI'm so thankful for all of these people - for because of them, I have a wonderful husband (also quite handsome and you can see on down the line where he got that), 3 wonderful boys, and surely more on the way - who knows where the line will go!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Crazy hair day

It was crazy hair day at Nathan's school today. He told me he couldn't wear
a wig, so this was the best I could do. I don't think it's too far
from being in style...
sure had to use a bunch of hairspray for his fine hair.

Washer & Dryer

Wednesday and Saturday are my laundry days, for the most part. I'm thankful for a washer & dryer that does most of the work for me. I can't imagine washing by hand, and I've hung clothes on a clothesline before, and it's so much easier to pop them in the dryer. Clean clothes in about 2 hours - amazing! We're so spoiled nowadays.



Tuesday, November 10, 2009

God's Plan, a Savior, and trust

Today will be a weightier post, as I've had a lot of things on my mind. I was thinking about God's plan for each of us, the blessing of a Savior, and about trusting in God. I'm thankful for the wonderful blessings that come from those. The words to the song "I Know That My Redeemer Lives" has been going through my head. It says,

I know that my Redeemer lives. What comfort this sweet sentence gives! He lives, he lives, who once was dead. He lives, my everliving Head. He lives to bless me with his love. He lives to plead for me above. He lives my hungry soul to feed. He lives to bless in time of need.

He lives to grant me rich supply. He lives to guide me with his eye. He lives to comfort me when faint. He lives to hear my soul's complaint. He lives to silence all my fears. He lives to wipe away my tears. He lives to calm my troubled heart. He lives all blessings to impart.

He lives, my kind, wise heav'nly Friend. He lives and loves me to the end. He lives, and while he lives, I'll sing. He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King. He lives and grants me daily breath. He lives, and I shall conquer death. He lives my mansion to prepare. He lives to bring me safely there.

He lives! All glory to his name! He lives, my Savior, still the same. Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives: "I know that my Redeemer lives!" He lives! All glory to his name! He lives, my Savior, still the same. Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives: "I know that my Redeemer lives!"

As the words came to my mind, and hearing the phrase "He lives" repeated over and over, I was reminded of the miracle of the Atonement and resurrection. I don't understand how it works, but because of Christ's Atonement, we are able to be cleansed from our sins and to also live again with God (He lives to "bring me safely there" to the mansion that He has prepared). And the significance that he lives means that He is still here to bless us. Jesus didn't just die for our sins and leave us to find our way back alone. His Atonement covers all of our pains, our fears, and inadequacies. He LIVES to calm our troubled heart and impart blessings to us. I'm thankful for that.

Realizing that we are a part of God's plan brings comfort because that means that He is at the helm. While we still have freedom to choose our path, there is a great amount of trust placed in us that we will choose the right. I think sometimes he also must have a sense of humor because of the unexpected things that come along (haven't you heard this before: If you want to make God laugh, tell him YOUR plans.) He knows what is best for us and we aren't free from trials - in fact, that's the remarkable part of the plan. We must have opposition in all things. But it's that trust in the Lord and also his trust in us that allow us to make it through anything, in HIS timing.

Just thinking a little more about trust, I've seen how this works with my parents. When I was at home, I think it was trust that kept me out of trouble. While I still had a curfew and "rules" (we didn't have written rules, but I knew exactly what they expected), they placed a great amount of freedom and trust in me that I would choose the right. I operated on the basis of not ever wanting to break that trust. The more I trusted in and fulfilled their expectations, the more trust they had in me, and the greater freedom.

I know this is getting long, but I'm thinking of one of my favorite scriptures - Proverbs 3:5 - "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." I think this could be my personal theme scripture - I'm trusting in the Lord to direct my paths and acknowledging Him, it's just the "with all thine heart" that I need to work on.

Monday, November 9, 2009

scary costumes

I forgot to mention that I bought a couple of transformer costumes for the boys. The masks are a little scary. Jared tried his on - when he went to look at himself in the mirror, he didn't say a word. I asked him what he thought. He said quietly, "I wish you hadn't gotten this Mama" and wanted to take off his mask. I think he was really scared of what he saw, even though he was behind the mask.

Church family

I guess I should have been grateful for Wal-Mart today, since I went 6 times (between the 2 here in town)! I did get some costumes for Jared's birthday party for $1.40 each...

But actually, what I'm most thankful for is the good people in our church. Tonight we were invited over to roast hotdogs and marshmallows, and the boys got to ride a horse. It was really fun and we had a good time. It reminded me of home, because when you walk in their house, it's beautifully decorated, it smells good, and it's so clean. I just wanted to kick my feet up and stay for a while. I think they enjoyed the boys too, since they are missing their grandkids. I guess our little redheads can be a good substitute for theirs... better watch out Whitney, Liberty, and Stephanie - they might adopt us and not need to visit you anymore! :)