Monday, March 28, 2011

The Next Chapter

See that? It's Virginia. Home of Fort Lee, where we will be stationed for the next couple of years. (

The exact timing of the big move has yet to be determined, but I can say with 99% surety that it will occur by the beginning of June. Likely sooner, but we'll see.

I've never moved 2, 170 miles before. It will be interesting.

So...bring on the adventure!

Thursday, March 10, 2011


We are on the edge of some big decisions- the kind that HAVE to be made, because not doing anything would have repercussions as profound as those of any of the other options we might choose between. I know at some time or another everyone has choices like these, and I also know that the most important factor in all of this is faith.

On an unrelated note, we had quite a snowstorm Monday night. Tuesday morning Wyatt looked out at the snow and wanted to play in it. So he did, and bless his heart at least he put on his boots first. Coat, hat, gloves? No time. Jana took the precaution of putting on a raincoat and boots, but she was also so bent on getting outside that she wouldn't hear of a hat or gloves either.

They were so anxious to get started on that adventure that they just threw caution out the window and went for it- I suspect knowing that I was watching over them and would intervene for their safety if it really became necessary.

So while I was uploading these pictures and looking over them with a smile- a mixture of humor and incredulity- I started thinking. I had been pondering on courage and faith, and some ideas I had turning over in my mind started to come together.

Almost every decision can be compared to my kids' little adventure. There are times when I can decide carefully and completely, and take every single precaution I can think of in an effort to be prepared- but there are also times when the best/right thing to do is just dive in and have faith that a loving heavenly parent (who I sometimes imagine wearing a smile of humor and incredulity at my actions) will watch over and bless me with the knowledge and guidance I need- when I need it.

Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear- not absence of fear. Except a creature be part coward it is not a compliment to say it is brave.
-Mark Twain

Either life entails courage, or it ceases to be life.
-E.M. Forster

Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.
-Ray Bradbury

Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.
-C.S. Lewis

When we went forth into the waters of baptism and covenanted with our Father in heaven to serve Him and keep His commandments, He bound himself also by covenant to us that He would never desert us, never leave us to ourselves, never forget us, that in the midst of trials and hardships , when everything was arrayed against us, He would be near unto us and sustain us.
-George Q. Cannon

This is a great time to live. When times are unsettled, when the dangers persist, the Lord pours out His blessings upon His church and kingdom. I have been associated now in the councils of the Church for upwards of thirty years. During that time I have seen, from the sidelines at least, many a crisis. Among the leaders I have seen great disappointment, some concern, maybe some anxiety. One things I have never seen is fear. Fear is the antithesis of faith. In this Church and in this kingdom there is faith. So let us look forward with an attitude of faith and hope.

-Boyd K. Packer (emphasis added)

I haven't come to any specific conclusion to the issue at hand yet- but I know where to place my faith and trust, and I have learned that there simply isn't room for fear in my life.

And this picture is just so Aunt Marianne can see how Hank and Mary are loved.
Thanks again!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I Have Work Enough to Do

When I was little, I thought that hymn title was perplexing, due to my misinterpretation of its message.
I thought, "I Have Work Enough to I look like I'm looking for more?!?"
Or maybe, "I Have Work Enough to do your own work yourself!"

I was confused, because that didn't seem quite right.

As an adult, who has actually read the lyrics, that hymn makes more sense to me. In addition, I have had some light bulb moments lately in regard to work, thanks in large to this book:

For example:

This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of Nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.
-George Barnard Shaw

Said President David O. McKay, "Let us realize that the privilege to work is a gift, that the power to work is a blessing, that love of work is success."

And Margaret Thatcher, "Look at a day when you are supremely satisfied at the end. It's not a day when you lounge around doing nothing; it's the day when you've had everything to do, and you've done it."

I confess I have been a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments lately. A wise friend of mine once commented that while we are often told Heavenly Father will not test us beyond what we can handle, He certainly isn't going to test us any less, either. Of course life is comprised of hard work, otherwise it would be useless to us.

So here I sit, on the morning of a day when I feel like I have everything to do, and I am pondering on my work.

You know the days.

There's laundry to wash ...

...and fold and put away. And in our case today, pack for their weekend with Aunt Marianne and my weekend with Daddy.

There's toys to be cleaned up and floors to be vacuumed...

...bathrooms to clean...

(Sparkling, beautiful bathrooms depress me in the same way that skinny, airbrushed models do.)

...dishes to wash, floors to sweep and mop, and groceries to buy and put away.

Oh, and the dog needs a bath. He smells like a goat. Seriously.

I realize that the above only represent the simple works of mortal life.

But somewhere amidst all the daily tasks, there is other work, infinitely more important that needs to be done.

Work like helping Zion as it grows (I love my job. I do.).

Work like teaching the next generation the value of work, honesty and integrity.

Work like setting an example worthy of following. The work of patience, kindness, problem-solving, patience, love, compassion, patience, and patience.

The work of teaching my children that constantly striving to live the gospel is the only way to achieve real happiness.

Of the "everything" I have to do, I will get much of it done today, and hopefully make a teeny step of progress toward the rest.

And tomorrow, I'll get on one of these... I can go give this guy a hug and a kiss!
(Even when 2,000 miles apart, marriages need work too.)

Okay, now I'm going to get busy!