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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Tongue of Angels

I love the chapter in "Broken Things to Mend" that is entitled "The Tongue of Angels". It states that words are sacred and must be spoken with care.  Elder Holland cautions us regarding how we speak to each other and how we speak of ourselves.

I know that I've thought about the damage that something spoken in haste can do.  But I've never really thought about the damage that speaking badly of ourselves can do.  In the Apocrypha, Ecclesisticus 28:17 it states, "The stroke of the whip maketh marks in the flesh: but the stroke of the tonue breaketh the bones." Elder Holland states that "some things we say can be destructive, even venomous" and "the voice that bears profound testimony, utters fervent prayer, and sings the hymns of Zion can be the same voice that berates and criticizes, embarasses and demeans, inflicts pain and destroys the spirit of oneself and of others in the process."

I try to be careful of what I say about others and to others but I've never thought about what I say about myself and the harm that it can do.  I think I've thought I've had the right to demean and berate myself. Elder Orson F. Whitney once said: "The spirit of the gospel is optimistic; it trusts in God and looks on the bright side of things. The opposite or pessimistic spirit drags men down and away from God, looks on the dark side, murmurs, complains, and is slow to yield to obedience."

In Matthew 14:27 our Savior tells us to "be of good cheer".  Elder Holland's maxim for living is "no misfortune is so bad that whining about it won't make it worse." I love that thought!

I have found that when I have a tendency to be negative my day does not go well.  If I can take a moment and realize what I am doing and consciously turn that attituded to positive thinking my whole day suddenly changes! This has even helped when I am having the physical challenges that I have. If I wake up and really don't want to face the day, I find that if I force myself to smile in the mirror it helps.  In fact sometimes as I try to smile at myself it is so humorous that I even laugh. Especially looking at myself first thing in the morning without makeup and my unruly hair.

Okay I don't look that bad, I think, but it's still a humorous thing to see.

Elder Holland ends this chapter by saying: "Please know that your Father in Heaven loves you and so does His Only Begotten Son. When They speak to you--and They will--it will not be in the wind, nor in the earthquake, nor in the fire, but it will be with a voice still and small, a voice tender and kind.  It will be with the tongue of angels."

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Dealing with Life

I've been dealing with a health issue for a few years now. I finally gave in and went to see a specialist this last Monday. She is putting me on a special diet and will run some tests on me but not until she sees how the diet effects me. Mainly the tests will be to rule things out, such as cancer. I know this is vague but it's quite a personal issue and a lot of people would not want the details. 

Living with what I'm going through has been very challenging to say the least.  Sometimes it's debilitating. It not only effects how I function in the day time but how I sleep at night. At times I become very sleep deprived.

This is when I find it harder to be positive. I've read, though, that leading a positive, low stress life works best on my symptoms. So going back to a previous post I am practicing my deep breathing to help me relax.

I also do a lot of praying to help me get through the episodes I have. We all have certain "opportunities" that come our way to help us learn, stretch and grow. This is my opportunity.  Not that I haven't had plenty of opportunities for growth.  Believe me I have. But I'm finding that when I have learned what I'm supposed to learn from one opportunity then another is waiting to take me on.

One of the chapters in "Broken Things to Mend" is entitled "All Things Are Possible to Him That Believeth".  In Mark in the New Testament there is a story of a man with a son that was afflicted with a self-destructive spirit since childhood and the spirit was getting increasingly more dangerous.  The father went to Jesus and said "If thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us." Jesus said unto him, "If though canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth."

We are all given things in life to challenge us.  Elder Holland says "Hold fast to the things you do know. Hang on to your firmest foundation, however limited that may be, and from that position of strength face the unknown. When questions of history or science or philosphy arise, when sorrow or disappointment or despair seem to stalk you, do what this father did--assert all the faith you do have, and everybody has some! If we can do just that we will learn the truthfulness of Jesus' promise--that even mustard-seed-sized faith will ultimately move any mountain."

Elder Holland goes on to say " Surely the first rule of fueling faith is not to start by saying how much of it you don't have.  You've got more than you think and if you will assert that first, limited as it is, the miracle of it will lead you on, step by step, across your void of mystery or dread. If you will do this, Jesus will take you by the hand, just as He did this afflicted young man in the story, and you will be "lifted up," you will "arise" in the timetable of theLord--to health and happiness and brighter days ahead, all the brighter because your faith has been increased in the process."

I love this book! I admire Elder Holland so much.  I would recommend this book to everyone.  There isn't one person that wouldn't benefit from reading and learning from the lessons this book has. 

My goal tonight?  To sleep like a baby.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Highest and Holiest Purpose

As I continue my journey through "Broken Things to Mend" I have discovered the highest and holiest purpose of human existence. Jeffrey R. Holland says: "For each of us to 'come unto Christ' (D&C 20:59), to keep His commandments, and to follow His example back to the Father is surely the highest and holiest purpose of human existence. To help others do that as well--to teach, persuade, and prayerfully lead them to walk that path of redemption also--surely that must be the second most significant task in our lives."

I wonder how many miss the meaning of this? I know that I have. I have been selfish in my life.  Actually I think people are all somewhat selfish to some extent.  What if we all embrace our high and holy purpose in life? Wow! That thought would change the world.

The chapter I am reading is actually about teaching effectively.  But I have received another meaning for me as I have read it. I was meeting with a church leader today. We were talking about forgiveness, not only for others but for ourselves.  I discussed how I am struggling to overcome anger that I still have at losing my job last year. Later as I talked with my husband I told him that I realize that I expect to be forgiven but I am not forgiving. I am still harboring feelings that are holding me back. I am not following the Savior's example.  How can I expect to be forgiven, follow Christ and help others if I am not forgiving? So my goal, along with the goal to follow Christ each day, is to let go of those angry feelings.  I never thought I was one to hang onto those kind of feelings but I have. So I have my work cut out for me.

There is so much more in this chapter.  I have only touched on what has inspired me at this time. This book does say "We all need to be touched and nurtured by the Spirit and effective teaching is one of the most important ways this can happen."  If we don't keep Jesus Christ foremost in our lives we cannot have a positive effect on others.  We cannot help ourselves let alone others.

So my goal is to draw myself out from being turned inward and work at embracing our highest and holiest purpose in this life. I need to constantly be willing and ready to reach up when He is reaching down for me.

Monday, May 16, 2011

To Know Who I Am

As I continue to read “Broken Things To Mend” I’m very appreciative of the words Elder Holland says when he is talking to the women in this book. He says, “I want you to be proud you are a woman, I want you to feel the reality of what that means, to know who you truly are.”
I wonder how many women in this world know who they truly are.  I know I struggle each day with my identity as a daughter of God.  I struggle with self esteem constantly. So I appreciate when Elder Holland states “You are literally a spirit daughter of heavenly parents with a divine nature and an eternal destiny.” He goes on to say, “Your Father in Heaven knows your name and knows your circumstance. He hears your prayers.  He knows your hopes and dreams, including your fears and frustrations. And He knows what you can become through faith in Him.”
That is an awesome thought, that God knows who I am and he knows what I can become.  My challenge is, then, to know what I can become.   How do I find what I can become?  How do I gain that vision?
Elder Holland states, “For you to fully claim Heavenly Father’s blessings and protection, we ask you to stay true to the standards of the gospel of Jesus Christ and not slavishly follow the whims of fads and fashions.”
These statements apply to all women of all ages.  I think sometimes I forgot to keep learning who I am and what I can become. There are so many things in life that sidetrack us.  I know I let many things get in my way of realizing my full potential.
This all goes along with this quote, “Never mind searching for who you are.  Search for the person you aspire to be.  ~Robert Brault,”
It is my challenge to search and learn who I can aspire to be and need to be.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Broken Things to Mend

I once read a book called “Broken Things to Mend” by Jeffrey R. Holland.  I’ve decided I need to re-visit that book.  I have days that I feel like this:

So I’ve decided to share thoughts from the book as I re-read it. Just reading the inside flap of the book uplifts me.  This is what is says:
“Most of us feel a little broken at some time or another, and we know others who feel so as well.  We face personal trials and family struggles.  We get discouraged and downhearted.  Many people, enduring conflicts fought in the lonely foxholes of the heart, feel their lives may be damaged beyond repair.
. . . Elder Jeffrey R. Holland’s characteristic good cheer and brilliant insights offer the surest and sweetest remedy of all.  He invites all readers, not just the poor in spirit, to come unto Christ and receive ‘the strength that comes from experiencing firsthand the majesty of His touch.’”
As positive as I want to be, there are times when it is very hard. In Matthew 11:28-29 it says, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”
I’ve always worried about making ends meet.  It is a concern since I lost my job a year ago. But we have been truly blessed over this last year and I am amazed that we are doing as well as we are.  I know I need to learn to trust the Lord more, not just in finances, but in every aspect of my life.  All I have to do is follow him and he will give me answers to my prayers, he will give me rest to my soul. 
Elder Holland stated that often our trials result from the actions of others or just the mortal events of life. But anything we can change we should change, and we must forgive the rest. The Savior will take it from there.
What a comforting thought! I just need to remember this. He will not turn his back on us when we are striving to change and forgive.
The following is from the book:
In Nazareth, the narrow road,
That tires the feet and steals the breath,
Passes the place where once abode
The Carpenter of Nazareth

And up and down the dusty way
The village folk would often wend;
And on the bench, beside Him, lay
Their broken things for Him to mend.

The maiden with the doll she broke,
The woman with the broken chair,
The man with broken plough, or yoke,
Said, “Can you mend it, Carpenter?”

And each received the thing he sought,
In yoke, or plough, or chair, or doll;
The broken thing which each had brought
Returned again a perfect whole.

So, up the hill the long years through,
With heavy step and wistful eye,
The burdened souls their way pursue
Uttering each the plaintive cry:

“O Carpenter of Nazareth,
This hear, that’s broken past repair,
This life, that’s shattered night to death,
Oh, can You mend them, Carpenter?”

And by His kind and ready hand,
His own sweet life is woven through
Our broken lives, until they stand
A New Creation—“all things new.”

“The shattered [substance] of [the] heart,
Desire, ambition, hope and faith,
Mould Thou into the perfect part,
O, Carpenter of Nazereth!”

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Soaring with the Eagles!

My husband sent this information to me in an email.  I felt it was very fitting for my blog. Enjoy!

The eagle can probably identify a rabbit moving almost a mile away. That means that an eagle flying at an altitude of 1,000 feet over open country could spot prey over an area of almost 3 square miles from a fixed position.

No wonder God wants us to spread our wings and soar with eagles!

Our lives are not determined by what happens to us but by how we react to what happens. Not by what life brings to us, but by the attitude we bring to life.  A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events, and outcomes. It is a catalyst, a spark that creates extraordinary results.
When it rains, most birds head for shelter; the eagle is the only bird that, in order to avoid the rain, starts flying above the cloud.

Isaiah 40:31
But those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

A tribute to my mother

I decided to make my Mother's Day post early because Mother's Day will be very busy and I wanted to have time to do this. As mentioned in my profile I am a mother of 5. I love being a mother.  And I love being a grandmother. I also love and adore my mother.  She is no longer here on earth but I feel her presence around me many times. I decided to honor my mother with an old song called “Mother”.  I’m not going to sing it (for which you should be grateful) but I am going to break it down more than the song does.  So here goes.
“M is for the many things she gave me”
I’m sure I don’t realize all that my mother did for me and sacrificed for me.  Being a mother myself I know a lot goes into motherhood.  I don’t think we truly appreciate our mothers until we either are older or have become a mother ourselves. I am eternally grateful for her sacrifices for me.
“O means only that she’s growing old”
My mother was 77 when she died.  In my mind that is not old. Especially the older I get. My mother was young at heart. She loved her children and grandchildren and loved it when they came to visit.  It was a highlight in her life.
“T is for the tears she shed to save me” 
I’m sure my mother shed tears in prayer for each of her children. And I know she watches over us from heaven, praying for us and probably still shedding some tears for us and the mistakes we are making. But she has hope for us because she knows our worth.
“H is for her heart of purest gold”
Oh yes, my mother’s heart was pure gold.  She loved us unconditionally.  She loved everyone unconditionally.  She was quick to forgive and forget.
“E is for her eyes with lovelight shining” 
You could see the love in my mother’s eyes.  She loved and adored her family. She always looked forward to a visit from any of us and was sad to see us go.
“R means right and right she’ll always be” 
I believe that my mother was as perfect as a person could be in this life when she died. 
“Put them all together they spell Mother, a word that means the world to me.”
The last 5 months of her life she could not express her love or thoughts verbally.  But she expressed them through her smile and eyes. Even the nurses that were helping take care of her would talk about her smile and how they loved it.
I will forever be indebted to my wonderful mother.  I cannot repay her for all she did for me.  I can, however, strive to be the mother and person that she would want me to be so I can be with her and my Heavenly Mother when I leave this world.
If your mother is still alive, tell her you love her and how much you appreciate her while you can.  They leave us all too soon.
Below are some pictures of my mother. 

One of my aunts thinks she is wearing part of her brother, Paul's, uniform in this picture.

She was a beautiful woman inside and out.

She was a wonderful mother.

This is one of our picnics in Boulder City.

This is my mom, her parents and brothers and sisters. My mother is on the front row, second one from the left.

Friday, May 6, 2011


The following is a story that my husband sent to me in an email. We don’t know who the author is but it’s a great story.               

 “When I was a kid, my mom liked to make breakfast food for dinner every now and then. And I remember one night in particular when she had made breakfast after a long, hard day at work. On that evening so long ago, my mom placed a plate of eggs, sausage, and extremely burned biscuits in front of my dad. I remember waiting to see if anyone noticed! Yet all my dad did was reach for his Biscuit, smile at my mom and ask me how my day was at school.
I don't remember what I told him that night, but I do remember hearing my mom apologize to my dad for burning the biscuits. And I'll never forget what he said:  "Honey, I love burned biscuits."
Later that night, I went to kiss Daddy good night and I asked him if he really liked his biscuits burned. He wrapped me in his arms and said, "Your momma put in a long hard day at work today and she's real tired. And besides... A burnt biscuit never hurt anyone!"
I love this story! This husband and father was grateful, not only for the biscuits, but for the love and time that went into the biscuits. He set a great example for his child. It is an example of many different things: love, selflessness, caring, sacrifice, humbleness, gratitude, etc.
I remember my mom telling me once that she was keeping a “gratitude” journal.  She found something to be grateful about each day and made an entry in her journal. How much better would our lives be if we gave thanks each day for what we have?
G.B. Stern stated, “Silent gratitude isn’t much use to anyone.” Gratitude needs to be expressed.  Tell others “thank you”, even for the smallest act of kindness.

I found the following online and will end my post with this:
Be Thankful
Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?
Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.
Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.
Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.
Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.
Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.
It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.
GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.
~ Author Unknown ~


Monday, May 2, 2011

The Prom

I know I just made a post this morning but I wanted to do a short post about my grandsons and their prom and show them off. They are such great young men.

My two oldest grandsons, Logan and Justin, went to their first prom on Saturday, April 30th. They went in a group of five couples. They were so handsome in their prom outfits. They all decided to do a very colorful array of clothing. They started the day with breakfast at a friends and then went on a hike to Redrock. Later in the day they dressed up and had their pictures taken. They also went on a helicopter ride over the city.

From the looks of these pictures it appears they had a lot of fun. It’s wonderful to see young people having clean, wholesome fun. It can be done. Logan, who is the oldest, is the one in black and Justin, who is 5 weeks younger than Logan, is in blue.

I'm so grateful for these two wonderful young men.  They are leading the way for all the younger grandchildren.  And they are doing a great job!


I am a person who has a tendency to stress.  Those who know me will agree with this statement.

 But I have learned one thing. Someone said once that when you get stressed just take a deep breath and just breathe. Sounds too simple? Breathing can be used as a source of stress relief. It is simple and effective.  It works quickly, you can do it anywhere, it's free, it doesn't take much practice, you can use it in the middle of something stressful to stay calm and it can reverse the stress response and avoid negative side effects. When you slow down your breathing and take deep breaths it can bring on some powerful states of relaxation.

Do you ever feel like this?

Below are some situations you can use deep, slow breathing to calm you down:
  • You’re stressed and you want to think more clearly.
  • You want to release tension in your body.
  • You’re feeling frustrated and want to ‘slow things down.’
  • You’re in the middle of an altercation and you want to feel more centered.
I've had a chance to do this plenty of times and sometimes I forget.  But it really does work. Just this morning I had a stressful situation that I was proud of myself to be able to breathe and relax.  This situation may not be stressful or as stressful to some but when you are awakened out of a deep sleep to a situation, it has a tendency to be stressful.  But all turned out well and just like the frog below, I was able to relax.

So for those few of you that read this blog, have a very relaxing day and be thankful to the person who said to just BREATHE!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I Love to See the Temple

This last Friday Dean and I visited the Las Vegas LDS Temple.  We walked the grounds and took pictures. 

I love the beautiful temple grounds! I haven’t spent a lot of time walking around the temple and I don’t think I’ve appreciated the tender care that goes into taking care of the beautiful flowers, trees, grass, etc.

Below is some information about the Las Vegas Temple that I found on

“Temple Locale
Sitting on the eastern edge of the city—far from the glitz and glamour of the world-famous Las Vegas Strip—the Las Vegas Nevada Temple is a spiritual beacon in the City of Lights. The six soaring spires rising from the building echo the arresting red desert peaks of nearby Sunrise Mountain. Flourishing flowers and trees adorn the verdant grounds of the temple. Visitors are welcome to walk the surrounding pathways to feel the peace that eminates from this sacred structure.
Temple Facts
The Las Vegas Nevada Temple was the first temple built in Nevada.
The angel Moroni statue of the Las Vegas Nevada Temple faces east, away from the city, symbolically heralding the Second Coming of the Lord, Jesus Christ.
Natural light streams through the breathtaking floor-to-ceiling windows of the Celestial Room of the Las Vegas Nevada Temple, projecting miniature rainbows on the walls.
The Las Vegas Nevada Temple was announced concurrently with the Portland Oregon Temple, Toronto Ontario Temple, San Diego California Temple, and Bogotá Colombia Temple.
Following the announcement of the Las Vegas Nevada Temple, members of the temple district were asked to contribute toward construction. They enthusiastically answered the call, raising $11 million—428 percent of their assessment.
During the 23-day open house of the Las Vegas Nevada Temple, 297,480 visitors toured the edifice. More than 99,000 visited the missionary pavilion following their tour, and missionaries reported that teaching appointments tripled in the valley as a result of the temple's opening.
Dedicated in eleven sessions just before the Christmas holiday, the Las Vegas Nevada Temple was a fitting gift for the Savior of the World.”
Elder Boyd K. Packer said: "There are many reasons one should want to come to the temple. Even its external appearance seems to hint of its deeply spiritual purposes. This is much more evident within its walls. Over the door to the temple appears the tribute "Holiness to the Lord." When you enter any dedicated temple, you are in the house of the Lord."
Russel M. Nelson said, "Inscribed on each temple are the words “Holiness to the Lord.” That statement designates both the temple and its purposes as holy. Those who enter the temple are also to bear the attribute of holiness."
There are great pictures in the Photograph Gallery on the same website previously mentioned. The pictures on this blog are ones that I’ve taken.
I was privileged to be part of the temple open house before it was dedicated as one of the ushers/guides as people walked through and viewed the different areas of the temple.  I was also able to sing in the choir at the dedication. What an honor that was! If you’ve never been able to visit a temple as part of an open house or attend a dedication, I encourage you to be able to do that some day.
President Thomas S. Monson said: “ I think there is no place in the world where I feel closer to the Lord than in one of his Holy Temples.”
Whether we can go through the temple as an endowed member of the church or if we can only visit the foyer and the temples grounds,  I feel everyone will be blessed by visiting the temple.