Monday, January 28, 2013

Millions of Birthday Wishes

I just got done “Chalking” one of our brand new Beehives front drives wishing her a Happy Birthday from the Young Women’s.  One of her advisors will be bringing over something magnificent too because that’s what my advisors do, be magnificent.  My birthday was yesterday.  I woke up to an Email from my Dad wishing me a happy Birthday at 2:11 a.m. our time all the way from the Philippines followed by one from his wife, my amazing step-mom, followed by a whole day of Happy Birthday wishes from all over the United States and even from my dear sweet friend in Hungary (my Hungarian Twin her birthday was yesterday too).  My phone even on vibrate was going off every two seconds in church in response to texts and Facebook.  How amazing is technology?

                Jason and I are going to dinner tonight and sometime this week I will go to dinner with my Mom and we will celebrate both our week of birthdays.  When reflecting on getting one year older… I am 38 now… I was pretty excited and more than a little proud.  I told my kids “Hey, I’m only two years away from 40 that’s pretty great!”  Jenny looked at me like I was insane, and in her defense a lot of times I am but this was not one of those times, and asked how that could be a good thing.  “I’m two years away from half my life which means that I am almost halfway home.”

                I’ve tried not to be one of those women who freak out as we get older.  It’s not the getting older that I hate.  It’s the ageing body that I’m not so thrilled about.  Every year I get a little wiser and hopefully you do to.  Why would anyone want to stop that process?  Isn’t that the whole purpose of coming here, getting a little wiser?  Not to mention in everything that I do there is one accomplishment that my children will never catch me in while I am in this life and that is that I will always be able to say that I have lived longer than them!  Why do we look at that so harshly?

                No one can stop ageing, it’s an impossibility and nothing that we are at any fault for, but yet most of us, especially women, take on the shame as if we have done something wrong.   How about in return realize that I have done something great, even remarkable, by living this long and enduring so much hopefully trying to smile on the way.  How many people have I touched and lives have I blessed?  How many babies have I snuggled and tears have I wiped, how many books have I read and lessons have I learned?  How many more will I in the remainder of my life?  I don’t know but I plan on sticking around a bit more and finding out.

                Then, someday which will seem all too soon, I will go home, because as much as this life here may feel like home it really isn’t, and hopefully I will have taken advantage of every minute of it to learn, to love, to laugh, to cry, to have faith when hope seems impossible, to listen and to enjoy the journey home.

                Now if only my body didn’t have to sag and wrinkle and poop out on the way….  Oh how grateful am I for technology?  Thank you all for the Birthday Wishes!!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Should be in the Shower...

So here I sit when I should be getting into the shower.  I love a long shower after a good workout, it’s the getting  out, drying off, freezing, getting dressed, brushing my hair, putting on makeup, blow drying my hair, flat ironing and then the rest of the day that always puts off the shower for me.  I would much rather sit at the computer, stinky from working out, and type away like a mad woman.

Yesterday was Ward Conference and it was awesome having the stake take over.  In Young Women’s my Laurel’s President or one of her councilors always takes charge of opening exercises.  And they do a fantastic job.  Well this Sunday my Laurel’s President Megan had to give a 5 minute talk in Young Women’s  (which she nailed fabulously I must add…she is amazing) so the stake asked me to conduct.  What?!  Didn’t think it was that big of a deal, but I got tongue tied the entire time.  I now have new respect for my Laurel girls.  Megan and any of them that fill in when she is gone make it look so easy as they breeze through it as articulate as a poet.

Our new Young Women’s Stake President spoke and one of the things that kept going through my mind in relation to the wonderfully uplifting things she was saying was a conversation that Jason and I had had sometime earlier.  Doesn’t matter what we were talking about necessarily, but basically he was commenting on something that he didn’t want to do that he knew that he should do and maybe even should want to do.  I didn’t mind the thing that he was talking about and rather enjoyed it in fact.  He said, “I know that makes me horrible but I don’t want to after all that I’ve had to do.”  The thought instantly came to my mind, and of course I shared it with him because, well….I’m a woman and that’s what we do, “I like doing that and so for me to do it is no big thing, but you don’t want to and you still do.  Perhaps that’s a bigger deal than someone who enjoys it.”

I think he is a greater person than me in every way.  There are so many times in our lives when there are things that I don’t want to do when Jason will jump up and do it all be it grumbling a little while he does it but he knows it needs to be done no matter how much he hates the task.  He would be in the shower right now even if he had to do all that a woman does when they get out because it needs to be done like it or not so why put it off.

My mom always taught us about obedience as a kid.  She said that sometimes we do things that Heavenly Father asks out of obedience not necessarily because we want to, but that is okay, even great because He knows that although it is something that we don’t like doing we love Him enough to follow His commands.
Nan loves to cook and she is my master chef always popping in to help me with dinner.  I am always so grateful to her because she makes my life so much easier (and she is sweet as can be besides that), but Jenny doesn’t like it so much and even complains when I ask her to help.  The times when she just jumps up and lends a hand with dinner without being asked mean so much more to me because I know how much she hates it, but she loves me and that is why she is doing it.

That having been said, I guess it’s time to climb into that shower to enjoy the warmth even if what follows must come.  Kinda like scriptures, gotta open the book even if the time it takes doesn’t seem to be there, or prepare that lesson even though I don’t know where to begin, or say my prayers even if I have bad knees and I don’t want to kneel.  It may seem like a lot of work at first but He knows your effort and it will well be worth the warmth that follows!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Baby It's Cold Outside

                `Brr….It’s cold outside.  You know it’s sad when you are excited that the temp on your car registered 1degree this morning instead of the negative numbers that we have been getting.  Yesterday was an amazing start to my week.  Opening prayer Sherry Gould thanked Heavenly Father for the beautiful weather that we have had.  At first I was surprised but then she went on to say that even in the cold we have had beautiful sunshine.  She got me thinking about it right then and there.  She was right.  With all of the white snow we have and with it being so cold that everything has iced up, the beautiful sunshine has turned everything into something sparkly and picturesque.

                Then I went to Young Women’s.  Every chair was filled but one.  Now I know other classes have been noticing chairs missing from their rooms, but we have set ours up and it doesn’t appear that any chairs are missing.  We just have that many awesome girls coming.  In our lesson we broke up into groups to discuss a piece of a talk that we were assigned.  I looked around the room and saw the girls talking and discussing and giggling too and it was amazing.  Then when we regrouped and discussed it, they taught me something along with teaching each other.  Young Women’s is such a gift.  I’m so grateful that it’s my gift right now. 

                Then we had a big dinner with the family that night, Luke included, even though now he is renting with some friends across town.  He had cut his leg on Saturday after the chain came off the chainsaw that he was using.  It could have been life threatening or at least leg threatening, but it was really very minor to what could have been.  Blessings galore there.   After dinner we talked to my Dad and Step Mom on Skype.  How awesome is that?  It was 7:20 p.m. here on Sunday and 11:20 a.m. there on Monday and it was almost as if we were in the same room together.

                Valarie, my Step Mom, has been teaching the Relief Society ladies there in the Philippines how to make scones.  None of them have ovens, they cook over fires or hot plates, and therefore can’t make bread.  They were so excited to learn to make bread in a fry pan that word got out and a branch that’s outside of their Mission asked Valarie to come and teach their women.  I never looked at my oven as a luxury before.  I always thought that it was a need.  I am blessed because I have an oven and believe it or not so many people in the world do not.

                Today a good friend called, my best friend Bev who lives in Beaver.  She invited me to go with her to three days’ worth of awesome workshops at the end of February, and I couldn’t help but think after talking to my Dad and Valarie yesterday what a luxury that was too.  Two nights, with someone I can spend hours talking to while learning how to make gourmet cupcakes and applique flowers and I can think of nothing funner, well maybe spending three days with my amazing hubby.  Then that led me thinking about that amazing hubby that I have.  Jason is the most compassionate husband that ever walked the face of the earth, and he’s brilliant to boot (like genius I’m telling you)!  And I get to have him forever!  God must really love me!

                Which of course led me to be grateful for the knowledge I have of who I am, God’s daughter and Christ’s sister, and therefore I matter and my possibilities are endless and how do I know this?  I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, that’s how.  All because my parents weren’t satisfied with the questions they had had and the holes in their religion that they couldn’t fill, and all because two young boys were willing to serve a mission.

                Now, I know it’s cold outside, and I really hate winter, but how can I complain when I have so much and my life is so amazing?