Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter, Standing for Him

This weekend I saw a sign for an Easter Extravaganza which was to take place on Easter Sunday, put on by a local church. First of all, it amazed me that a church would have a celebration of Easter as the "world" see's it on the Sabbath Day, on Easter Sunday, no less. Second, it amazed me that a church would promote a "worldly" tradition for Easter.

I don't mean to be judgmental but I have to wonder where their loyalty lies, man or God. I guess I can understand that sometimes getting the attention of people is to create an activity that attracts them, like an Easter egg hunt, and the Easter Bunny; then, hope that they will return to your church when they finally do decide to search for God in their lives. It's sad to think that this is the only way that people will go to church activities.

How do we show people why we truly go to church, and that its not a bad thing? I remember when I was young(er) that people came to church on Christmas and Easter no matter what they believed. It was just something they did, go to church as a family on special occasions. But today, its more like we stay home with family no matter what we believe on special occasions. When did that change?

I think it changed when people went to sleep and stopped standing up for what is right and true. I think it was easier for people to just give in to those who spoke loudest than to fight for what was right. You could believe what you want as long as you kept it to yourself but they could say whatever they wanted; we see a lot of that in the political world today. It probably started with religion.

My dear Sisters, and any brothers reading this, we have to speak up for our Savior. He came here for a purpose and we cannot fail Him in our responsibilities to that purpose. We have to stand up as righteous women and speak for the truth and light that we so need in today's world. We cannot straddle the fence any longer, we have to stand up and fight for the things that take us away from our Savior. It falls on our shoulder to lead in this area.

But first we have to make those changes in our own lives. We have to know what is truth and light in our own lives in order to be the example and speak for it. Studying, not just reading, the scriptures is a good place to learn. Attending our church meetings, and listening to the words of our prophets will also help us. We have that opportunity next weekend by watching General Conference. I so look forward to being spiritually fed then. And attending the temple is a great place to learn about that Light.

Sisters, the time of the second coming is so near, we have to make that stand today and share what we know with others the best we can. We have to be prepared ourselves and be willing to help as many others along that same path. It is our responsibility to do this and what better day to make that commitment than on Easter Sunday, the day we remember what our Savior Jesus Christ has done for us. Let us all make that stand for truth and righteousness from this day forth and do His will along that path. May God bless you as you make this stand as righteous women.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Emergency Kit for your Car

Have you ever thought about traveling a long distance to an area you are not familiar with then your car breaks down? It has happened to people before. I remember a story about a young couple that was on their way to visit family but ran into a snow storm and was stranded for a while.

The husband felt the need to find help for them so we traveled by foot in the snow leaving his wife behind to stay in the car until he returned. To make a long story short, things worked out for them. But I don't remember if they had an emergency kit in their car or not; that would have been a good time to have one.

You never know when storms arise or even if the issue is not storm related say you are in the desert or many miles away from civilization and you break down, you need to have an emergency kit handy.

Here is a link with suggestions for what the kit would have in it but be creative and think about the path you are going and what your needs might be, then adjust your kit to fit those needs. It is always better to be safe than sorry.

Emergency Prep Car Kit

You might also want to prepare a first aid kit for your car, just in case.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Going to the House of the Lord

Years ago I set a goal to go to the temple once a month. I kept that goal for a long time. Those of you who are Mormon know you have to live your life within certain standards in order to enter into the most sacred place on the earth. When you live these standards then you are worthy to enter into the House of the Lord.

Every time I attended the temple I had wonderful experiences. I never walked away without learning something new. I formed a question in my mind and I would learn the answer then or later through scripture study. I loved attending the temple.

But last year I experienced a test and did not pass it. I had some unexpected expenses that I choose to pay and not keep up with my tithing to God. I missed some months and convinced myself that I would make it up before year end but I just kept getting behind.

Needless to say, at tithing settlement I could not pay the difference which made me less than a 100% tithe payer. As I confessed this to the Bishop he asked me not to attend the temple for awhile, my heart was sad.

My temple recommend was due to expire in February so we set the goal to be 100 % for 3 months. After that I would meet with the Bishop again. I was successful with getting back on track; however, he told me that the Stake President would probably want me to be back on track after 4 -5 months so I have to wait until April before I can renew my recommend and attend the temple again.

My heart aches to return because I have so much work to do for my ancestry as well as my thirst for more knowledge. I will never make that mistake again. I love the temple and the feeling of the Spirit while I am there. I know that wonderful things happen in there.

I also know that the work for my ancestry depends on me and if I do not live my life worthy then I can not help them. Who else do they have? There may be others out there doing the work but it is my responsibility to do this for my family; I can't let then down. So...from this day forward I will live my life so that I may be able to enter the temple knowing my life and the life of my loved ones, who have left this earth already, will truly be blessed as I do so.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Dead People Hunting

When my children were younger I had to take them with me to do family research in southern Georgia. Anytime I would mention family history, they ran. I really like to go in October and March or April so I can feel the cool air, which living in Florida doesn't provide, and I enjoy my time out finding cemeteries. So I had to find a creative way to get my kids excited about the research. What better thing to do than to go "Dead People Hunting"?

I coined this phrase so they would like to go and it worked. So now that they are older and I say I'm going dead people hunting, they don't mind going so much.

Dead people hunting is about searching for grave yards and finding your family's burial spots. We just went this past week and we had a good time spending time together but the drive was long and the grave yards were well hidden. But I felt so successful when we found them.

The last one we went to was the Bush Cemetery in Cuba, Georgia. It was hidden off the road behind some cow pastures. We were so happy to finally find it. I was looking for two names, James and Mary Bush, that were great-great-great grandparents and was so thrilled to see that someone really honored these two people because they put up a big monument with the genealogy on it, must of cost a lot of money to do that. I appreciated it.

I took my pictures and a moment to honor them myself. I turned around and saw a headstone that was kind of hard to make out but I saw a name I recognized. It said the wife of AC Sheffield then I looked above that and could barely make out the name of Arkansas Bush. She is the daughter of James Bush, and my great-great grandmother. I was so thrilled for this extra find.

This photo is not of AC and Arkansas, just used for example.

The cool thing is when I see the names of people on paper or the computer its cool but when I see them on a marker or in a picture they become so real to me. I then begin to grow a love for them. My heart turns to them and I have the desire to know more about them.

Doing this research is more than just finding names, its finding your family. I do love dead people hunting.

Homemade Treats

It is so fun to make things homemade. I feel so successful when I make things from scratch whether its food or crafts. I just love making things from scratch. For some reason they just taste better. So if you are like me, I hope you will enjoy some of the links I have listed below. Enjoy and let me know what you liked most.

Have Fun!!!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Recipes for Pasta

Creating a food storage is a smart move but we have to know how to cook foods from our food storage to make it worth storing. You have to know how to use it and what your family will eat of it.

Practicing now is a good way to know what works.  So I have been searching for some recipes for this purpose. I have also found some using food storage that was purchased from companies, I added the link to one.

Here are a few links to some recipes for pasta.

Food Network Recipes

Pasta Recipes

25 Easy Pasta Recipes

Prepackaged Food Storage Recipes

I hope that these links are helpful.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Spending Time with Extended Family


I took a few days off of work this past week to go to Georgia for family history research, what I call "Dead People Hunting". My kids love it when I call it that, it helps them get a little more excited about going with me. They do their thing while I do mine when we go, the idea is we just love spending time together. In between the searches, while we are driving to places, we spend time telling stories or just talking about life.

I have an aunt who lives in Tallahassee who loves to go with me to Georgia too. So needless to say she came with me this time. The only thing about my aunt going with me is she is a talker (good thing I'm a listener). She talks from the moment you see her until the moment you leave her. I hardly ever get to say anything. I love her so much but man, by the time we part my ears are hurting, we spent two days together this time around.

But I do love hearing some of the stuff she has experienced because she has experienced a life time of trials. The problem with listening to her is she is so detailed. She tells things that have nothing to do with her point but I guess she wants you to see the whole picture, and that is what gets so tiresome.

Anyway, I listened to her stories and learned some real good stuff about my family. She is the only family I have left on my dad's side. Her other brother past away years ago and my dad past away in 2006. My grandmother is gone too so in my aunts generation, she is the last. So I want to treasure the time I have with her, but it takes a lot of patience.

Family reunions are a good time to gather more treasures of family. There, you get to meet many people who can share stories of your ancestry. Hearing those stories coming from so many different people helps you develop a love of the past and for them, or it can make you hate it because its just not important to know about the past or whatever reason. However, the point is spending time getting to know the extended family is also very valuable.

God gave us families because we can draw strength from them, we can share life with them, we can learn to love with them. Families are so valuable, it amazes me when people don't want to spend what little time we have together on this earth getting to know those who are apart of us. I am so glad I do see this value and want to treasure it all. All it takes is a little effort and a little love to start finding the true treasures that our Heavenly Father has given us.

This treasure is a gift that goes with us to heaven. The things we learn from the family are things that can go with us to heaven. We know we can't take the material things with us but our knowledge and the things we learn here are the things we can take with us. I believe that the time I spend with my immediate and extended family will be the things I find pure love and joy in while here in this world and the one to come. Thank you Father for giving me the gift of family, ...and patience.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Pictures of Nature

I love looking at nature. There is so much beauty that surrounds us. I use to throw newspapers in the early morning hours when I lived in Utah. I use to see some of the most beautiful sunrises that I would have missed otherwise, because I love to sleep in.

I remember one day, when I lived in Florida, driving over a bridge between Tampa and St Pete, and the wind was blowing causing the water to make small waves and it was amazing to watch, hard to drive and watch at the same time though.

I had to hike with my son in order for him to earn his Hiking Merit Badge for Boy Scouts, the walks were long but some of the trails were so beautiful. I have found myself in awe so many times. This is a photo of Dead River Road in Florida, it was quite memorable for us.

Pictures don't really capture the true beauty that you see with your eyes but there are some pics that are still quite beautiful. Check out my Pinterest account and see some of the photos I have saved from pinning.

My Pinterest Photos

How can anyone deny God exists with all this beauty surrounding us, we can see His hand in all things. I am so grateful to a Heavenly Father who gave us such a beautiful world to live in. We just have to take the time to stop and smell the roses.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Mobile Scanners

Ok, I have been very lucky when it comes to scanners. I bought a printer for my home and it had a scanner in it. I have been able to scan documents and pictures for safe keeping in my external hard drive.

My brother had given me a gift card and I was able to buy a small photo scanner that I can take with me to different family members to scan and save old photos.

Then I went to a website called "" and bought a document scanner at a real good price. I never tried it out until recently and loved what it did. It is light and easy to maneuver.

If you are into traveling around doing your genealogy these two small items are a great investment for family history research. I am so excited to use them this next weekend when we go "dead people hunting" in Georgia. They are well worth the investment.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Store More Grains

Hey, I was thinking about how much grain we are supposed to store for a year supply so I will make this challenge easy, just repeat the last months challenge.

Staple - Store 1 months supply of any kind of grain you want (rice, flour, oatmeal, etc) for 1-2 people in your family.

Non-Staple - store the other 6 months worth of bar soap

Tasty - Store more chocolate chips or something else you like to cook with.

Did you know you can make your own soap?

Make your own soap

It might be fun to try sometime. Let us know how it works for you.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Kitchen Fun for Family Night

There have been times when our family night activity has been shared in the kitchen. We would plan a menu and all worked together cooking our dinner and dessert. Everyone having fun but they had no idea they were leaning new skills.

So it is with many things, if you make it fun, your families can learn and not even realize that it's a lesson. Some of our best memories are spent sitting around the table in the kitchen. Playing games, singing songs, or even decorating cookies can make good memories. Creativity is the key.

Here are some fun ideas you can teach your family in the kitchen:

First Aid
Holiday crafts
Creating 72 hour kits
Canning foods
Dehydrating Foods
Baking cookies or cupcakes for service projects
Organizing cabinets, good to do if you blind fold people to see if they can find what they need.

That's just a few ideas you can try. You can even make washing dishes fun!
Just spending time together can be the best memories, its not what you do but doing it together that counts.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Teaching my Daughter to Cook

So, I tried to teach my daughter to cook a long time ago and she is able to make some things but now that she has decided to go on a mission next year I think its time to make sure she knows how to really cook for herself.

Now, you think there is no problem with that, she is 19 years old, however she has a vision issue. She has an eye disease called Retinitis Pigmentosa. That means she is slowly losing her sight.

She has always had night vision issues, that's how we knew she needed glasses in the first place. But we didn't know how bad it was or how bad it was going to get. What happens is, she loses her night vision,then she starts to have tunnel vision which narrows the path of what she can see. If she looks down she runs into things but if she looks up then she trips over stuff. It has been trying for her.

She will then lose her color vision and eventually her sight, totally, that's how the disease progresses. But we always have hope that some cure can be found to help her later. But for now we are preparing for the worst. She is a little scared sometimes but she has lived this way all her life and really doesn't know any other way and because it's gradual it should be too hard to deal with.

I remember when she was 2 years old getting her first pair of glasses. She tried on a pair for sizing and immediately took them off ,I just knew we were going to have issues with glasses. But when she put them on again with the correct lenses she just looked around at everything in total amazement, I cried. It was the first time my little girl was seeing the world more clearly. She was around 12 years old when she was diagnosed with RP. At least now we know what we are dealing with.

She just started going to the Light House for the Blind and they have been very helpful with her. She now has a white cane so she can look ahead and not trip over stuff, like the dog who lies in the middle of the kitchen floor. She has been learning a lot about transportation and electronics. She has also been learning about self defense, that makes me happy. She is learning that life goes on no matter what, you just have to find your way.

So teaching her to cook is interesting but she does amazing well. She has taught me a lot about living with a disability, its only a disability if you let it be. We can still live our lives but work a little harder to get over the things that challenge us.  We all have challenges and this is one of her's, one of mine is not let her disability make me sad.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Making Diaper Cakes

So this lady at work is having a little boy. I usually do the parties at work so I am planning a baby shower for her. I needed a center piece and gift, I thought about making a diaper cake with a few little items to hang off it for a gift and the center piece. I finally decided to make a basket using diapers and some baby items in the basket.

There are many different styles and other great ideas to use with diapers. Take a look at some of these ideas.

Here are some websites to tell how to make diaper cakes or decorations using diapers.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


I love working and learning about my ancestors. I have learned a lot over the years and I am still learning more today. I want to take some time to share some things with you, when I can, to help you along your path of family history research.

In the have to know that record keeping is very important. Keeping track of events today will help those who seek in the future. I have said that I keep a family history journal which saves special information about births, wedding, deaths, and other important events in my family. This is good for the future but it can be a little more difficult with things of the past. Records of family have been kept since the beginning of time, we can see the genealogy from Jesus Christ through Adam in the scriptures. So if the Bible shows that keeping this record is important then maybe we should do the same.

The best place to begin your research is to record the things that you already know. There are free programs available to save on your computer or online. There are programs that you can pay for and save on your computer or online. And then there are manual forms that you can fill out and save in your files. I do a little bit of several of these things. 

I like hard copies because I feel the product of my hard work. But I also save that information on an external hard drive for save keeping. I also save it on either CD's or SD cards and save them in a safe for extra precaution. If you have a fire or flood and your hard copy records get destroyed you have the other stored in a fireproof safe so they can be restored.

Write down all the information you know about you, your parents, and siblings, then your grandparents on both sides plus their children and more if you know. There are two forms that can help with this information. One is the pedigree chart which shows the family line from generation to generation. The second is a family group sheet where you can see yourself as the child in a family and when you are married with your own family shows you as the parent. Those two forms are crucial to the success in doing your family history.

So this week find these forms and fill in all you know so that you can see what you are still missing and need to do research on. Next time we can talk about what the next step can be to finding the missing info.

Free Family History Forms

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Food Storage for Single People

If you are single it seems like food storage can be a wasteful thing. # 10 cans could be too hard to store food for just one person. So what other options are there? You still need to think about having food in times of shortages so what can you do?

I learned recently that one way a person can create food storage is to store food in mason jars. You can fill the jars with food items and then seal the lids with parafan wax. I found the wax at places like Wal-mart and grocery stores. You just need to melt the wax then after filling the jars with the lids on tight, turn the jar upside down into the wax. Just leave it in for a minute and let it dry on wax paper, then store it the mason jar box or on a shelf.

Using mason jars are one kind of container but you can also use plastic bottles like peanut butter jars or we have even used bird seed plastic containers. You can seal the lids with the wax as well and it stores just as long as cans. Amazing, huh?

I loved this idea and hope that it is helpful to you. It would be easy gifts for the single college student or grandparent. I also saw something recently, on Pinterest, about combining all the dry ingredients for meals in mason jars. That would probably work with storage as well, just put all the dry ingredients in the jar, seal with the wax and put a label with the name of the meal, the date it was prepared and the recipe to make it.

I love creative people who come up with these wonderful ideas, all I have to do it make it happen.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Family Day

My how our young grow fast. I use to tell my youngest, who is now 17 years old, that he was growing too fast. I told him that the others took longer to get to his age than he is. He just smiled and gave me a hug. I always told him to come sit on my lap before he gets too big, He always did and remembers that as he sits next to me now and gives me a hug. I try to encourage him to come sit on my lap now but all I get is the hug with a smile. They grow up too fast.

There are so many things we need to teach them before they grow up but the funny thing is the more I learn the more I have to teach them, its like I can never keep up. But I do know its a continuous process. The only thing is, they don't listen as well when they get older so you have to give them as much time now to teach them what they need to know about life and choices.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints encourages it members to have a night called Family Home Evening. This usually happens on a Monday night, once a week, and consists of a lesson, game or movie, and a treat. It can be a night out together maybe doing a service or taking a walk, or just a night of making good memories together.

I think about how fast they grow and how little time we have to teach them so it is important that we take advantage of teaching them important principles in life, having a family night can help in this matter. You don't have to be LDS to do this. And it doesn't have to be on Monday nights but it should be a weekly activity or as often as you can. There are several helps online for lesson plans and ideas for family night.

I was not a member of this church when I was real young but I remember my mom having nights that we would take turns listening to each others music and teaching each other to dance to it. It was lots of fun and good memories of sharing time together. She created a family night without even knowing about Family Home Evening.

Families are eternal and having good times together is important to our eternal relationship. I wasn't always good at having family night regularly but when I did I could see a change in the family relationships in our home. There was less arguing and more laughter which made me smile. I knew that in our house we will always have that eternal happiness now and later. Life is not always perfect but little things like family night and family prayer can make a big difference.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Keeping Journals

I wish my ancestors would have left journals for their posterity. I would have loved to hear their stories about the challenges and decisions they had to make. But, my ancestors were oral story tellers not the kind that write things down. It's sad that most of those stories are gone now with their owners.

I use to think I have nothing to leave to my posterity because my life was dull but I was wrong. I have experienced so many things in my life and I know I can pass those things down to my children, and generations to come afterward, so they can benefit from something I had experienced and over came, that was my plan.

What is sad is I love to write, always have, and I did keep journals for a long time. But most of those journals are lost to my children because they were destroyed from years of storage or just misplaced. So I have to take my already worn memories and rewrite those stories somehow. I'm sure with some prayer the most important ones will come to mind.

I can site a time that a journal was very useful to me. I use to keep a journal for my children when they were too young to keep their own. My oldest child had health issues caused by an immunization shot. My then husband had created a law suit a few years after this happened to her. It took a long time for this case to settle so exact memories had became faint. When time came for a deposition to be taken by the other side I was able to go back to her journals and give them the information they needed. 

So there is some benefit for those thing, even today. One day I was at the temple, waiting in the chapel, so I picked up the scriptures and opened to 1 Nephi chapter 7, he was talking about 2 records that he kept. It made me think about keeping 2 records. So now I have my journal for spiritual things and a journal for family history. I add things like wedding info, new baby info, and death info. I also add accomplishments like graduations from school, awards and promotions. I can always go back and find what I need when people want to remember exact dates.

I will admit though that I am not as good at my spiritual record keeping as I should be so I will have to challenge myself to do better. I also have to get started on my personal life before I forget anything else. I have seen some really cool ways to create an annual journal through all the family pictures for the year. They have created a family year book. I love that idea and wish I could start over with my kids younger. But I guess I can go back to my old pictures and still create those kinds of things, just might be a little challenging remembering everything.

Anyway, journal keeping is very important to our lives and those who are to come. I want to challenge you today to work on this area of your life to leave a legacy to your posterity in writing. This is one of my most important goals before I leave this earth, and with God's help, I will accomplish this goal.
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