Hello there friends. So I rarely do a post without a picture or two or twenty-two. Sometimes I feel the post incomplete without a picture, and often I tend to share many pictures with just a few words, a picture can be worth a thousand words. I think that when I “read” others’ blogs, I focus mostly on the pictures. Maybe because of the lazy bone, or maybe because a picture can be interpreted differently than words. Also, I maybe feel I can better express myself through pictures rather than words, or again, it could be the lazy bone that doesn’t feel like writing. Basically this is kind of a full journal entry today.
Anyway, today I have lots of words to share. Read if you’d like, or check back later for some new pictures. :)
Today has been a very good and simple day, full of much light and love. I am really happy today.
Let’s start with 7:30 am, when I got up. I had ward council this morning so I had to be at the church at 8:30. This morning, I didn’t change my outfit even once! Normally on sundays, I change my church clothes multiple time, usually with a last minute outfit change right before we leave. Not sure why I do that. My sister sent me a funny quote that was something like, “it’s better to arrive late than ugly” and sometimes I sort of agree with that. :) This morning I was a couple minutes late, which usually flusters me. Today it did not, and that was nice. I don’t like being late, but sometimes it happens, and you move on and try to do better next time.
What I took from ward council is that it’s about people and not numbers. And the organization of the church is built to help children of God, people like you and me. I also thought about remember and relying on spiritual experiences I’ve had. Usually after ward council, I might run back home to pick up Chris, but today I had my mother pick him up and bring him to church. I had some copies to make and things to print for Young Women today.
It was nice being at church so early. I talked with people. And that is usually a very good thing. I had a really great and simple talk with my stepmom. We shared some good open words and I’m grateful for that moment. Chris and Mom got to church and upon request, Chris brought me a some strawberries and cashews since I was hungry, a hungie lil girl.
I don’t remember the hymns we sang today. But I remember the ward members who gave of their time and talents to give us musical moments at church. Lately I’ve been singing the hymns in portuguese. The gospel in portuguese rings so true to my soul.
My step niece, Lauren, was the youth speaker today and I felt really proud of her during her talk. What a great girl. And I liked her dress. :) She shared how she has a goal to read the scriptures everyday. How wonderful. Daily scripture study is something that I struggle with and always want to do better in, and so it was really helpful for me to see her strength in one of my areas of weakness. We got a new elder in our ward, from Pennsylvania, and he taught about the atonement of Jesus Christ, using Preach My Gospel and the missionary lessons. It took my back to my mission, which is always a blessing to reflect on. I am ever so grateful I had the privilege of serving as a full time missionary in Brazil.
Then Chris and I sung hymn #71 with the choir. I don’t think I had ever sung that hymn before, and I’m still not sure what it’s called. Something about singing praises to Him maybe. Anyway, it was lovely singing with the choir, and it was especially lovely having my honey boy singing right next to me. Brother Dustin gave the last talk today, and he is funny! He said some funny things about how he and his wife almost hit a moose, and missed the moose and almost ran into a big snow berm (btw where did that word come from?), but they were blessed and didn’t. And then he said how their transmission blew up instead, but it could’ve been worse if they had hit a moose too. It was funny. Brother Dustin has a big white beard and dresses up as Santa at Christmastime.
By the way, I realized I made no notes of the actual ordinance of the sacrament. I am so grateful for those few moments to ponder on my savior and what he means to me. Christ truly is our savior and the Prince of Peace.
The second hour of church was sunday school. Brother Degraffenreid has been teaching the class this month, and I can sense that he works so hard to diligently teach us. He is open to the spirit and its direction, and he has been encouraging us to study to lesson guide on our own before class. I’d really like to do that, but I forget. Maybe I should study the class member study guide right meow since I am remembering…
So in young women, we have 13 girls total, and about 7 that regularly attend. Today we had 3 present and I was the only leader. So it was funny and low key. We will be having New Beginnings in a week and a half, so we did a few preparations for that. For our opening hymn I suggested we sing one of my favorites, #124 Be Still, My Soul, and then I changed my mind and decided we should sing #60 Battle Hymn of the Republic – you can never go wrong with that.
We sung and prayed and declared our YW theme and announced a few things, and then I went into teaching the lesson. Today’s lesson was focused on Christ and his great importance in our lives. It is a blessing to prepare for and guide lessons with the girls. The manual Come Follow Me is great and full of good questions, videos, and learning activities. I am really grateful for the gospel and the church. Today I thought it might be a good idea to play with play doh, because that is fun. So we all made some interpretive little sculptures of why/how Christ is important to us.
I rolled up a bunch of little play doh balls and put them on a flat and squished play doh square. Then I made a big smiley face with my remaining play doh, and I shared how Christ is important to me because he is central to my happiness. I can be cleansed from my sins, be purified, and live in the presence of God forever, with my beloved family.
One of the girls made praying hands and taught how she and pray and gain strength through difficult times. Another made a person and talked about how Christ is our creator. We talked about how our present and future creations a little bit too. Another girl sculpted the earth and shared how Christ created the earth in 6 days, rested on the 7th, and that is so important to us.
We also went through the gospel art book and discussed the importance of Christ in various people’s lives, especially those who knew him during his earthly ministry. It was great. I love gospel art and the stories that the pictures depict.
After church, Chris, the elders, and I went to a few families to administer the sacrament. This was such a sweet experience visiting wonderful people. It was so good. And it gave me a renewed perspective on the sacrament.
We first went to the Corey’s home, and they have so much cool stuff and stories! What a sweet couple they are. I need and want to go visit them more. Then we went to Alice Lind’s, who recently turned 90 and just moved from independent living to more of an assisted living. She said how that transition has been difficult to becoming so dependent on others, but it’s what she felt she needed to do. She is a woman full of great stories and experiences, and is so beautiful inside and out.
The missionaries then went to a teaching appointed and we headed up the hill to the Degraffenreid’s home. What a great visit we had there. They have always been an important part of my life and my family. Alan is one who always checked in with me to make sure my eyes were fixed on a temple marriage. As we talked with him and Gayle, Alan shared some really interesting stories of fishing in Alaska and experiences at some native villages. It was so great. I loved listening and talking and being there with Chris. He then showed us their house, and their incredible completed fireplace, and I saw so much potential in that home. He said how it’s a big project, one that’s been 25 years in the making, and he talked about hoping to finish it before he “croaks”. Alan is great and the Degraffenreid family has so much talent. Alan and Gayle told Chris and I to have fun and enjoy our youth. I think we’re doing a pretty good job with that. :)
We had a nice drive home down the hill, talked about one of my mentors, who I admire and appreciate so much. The Lord puts people in our lives that help us become better, and I’m especially grateful Chris is the way he is. He’s not judgmental and is open minded and kind. So grateful to share life with him.
When we finally got home about 4 pm, after not eating all day, Chris was getting a little hangry. Hanger is real. :) So he took our pup Edel on a walk and I prepared some foods for us to eat. I love creating food and am so glad I have time and desire for these creations.
I made some veggie scrambled eggs/omelet things, along with roasted potatoes and a side of avocado. It was a really tasty and flavorful little feast. For most of my 25 years, I haven’t been too into eggs, but I’d like to eat more of them. I have recently discovered when I mix an egg with a bunch of veggies and seasonings and a bit of yummy cheese, it’s delicious to me!
While we ate, we watch Star Trek: the Next Generation. We’ve been watching a lot of that lately. :) It’s not as much of an addictive TV series like Downton Abbey, Call the Midwife, SHIELD, or Mr. Selfridge, but still nice to have an ongoing story to watch.
Then we took a family nap. (after some fruit snacks) and it was really nice. Since we’ve been up late partying/playing/watching star trek/eating stuff/doing picture stuff on the computer, I haven’t been sleeping a bit less. It was nice taking a little snooze on the couch together.
When I woke up and worked on the small mountain of dishes we had and [ut Beauty and the Beast. The music is fantastic and I think it’s possibly my most favorite cartoon. I remember when I first got the special edition DVD, it was one of the first dvd’s I owned myself. I bought it at safeway. My sweet mother probably got it for me actually. I was like 12 or so and I used to watch it all the time, over and over.
I started making cookies because we want to take some to our neighbors and get to know them all better. While I was making cookies, there was one of my favorite moments of the day. Chris woke up, walked on over to me, and just held me, hugging me from behind. It was such a lovely embrace, such a perfect simple moment. I love my sweet Christopher, so much. I’m so happy to share our life together.
The cookies I made are delicious. Hopefully we save some for the neighbors. And I actually ended up watching/listening to Beauty and the Beast twice today and it has been a beautiful sunny and chilly day.
It’s now midnight. We have Star Trek back on, and Chris just had some nightly nachos that he’s been into lately. He’s got his hood on too. Pretty soon he’ll probably take of his smart wools and his sweatshirt because he’ll get too warm. I’ll probably fall asleep on the couch or floor while we watch star trek and then we’ll get our animals and go to bed. Good night friends.