TOFW Blogs http://tofw.com/ TOFW Blogs The Book of Mormon Saves Lives http://www.tofw.com/Book-Mormon-Saves-Lives-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/973 http://www.tofw.com/Book-Mormon-Saves-Lives-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/973 Tue, 28 Jan 2014 10:11:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-us-3oTORRhA/UufmXZcthgI/AAAAAAAAFIk/5xD4NxxkzyI/s1600/the+tall+and+short+of+it.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-us-3oTORRhA/UufmXZcthgI/AAAAAAAAFIk/5xD4NxxkzyI/s1600/the+tall+and+short+of+it.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-us-3oTORRhA/UufmXZcthgI/AAAAAAAAFIk/5xD4NxxkzyI/s1600/the+tall+and+short+of+it.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-us-3oTORRhA/UufmXZcthgI/AAAAAAAAFIk/5xD4NxxkzyI/s1600/the+tall+and+short+of+it.JPG" border="0" height="480" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; line-height: 150%;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; line-height: 150%;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"></span></span><br> <span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; line-height: 150%;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; line-height: 150%;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">D. Kelly Ogden will be presenting in the following cities on the 2014 tour: <a href="http://tofw.com/events/38" _mce_href="../../../events/38">Richfield, UT</a>; <a href="http://tofw.com/events/41" _mce_href="../../../events/41">Albuquerque, NM</a>; <a href="http://tofw.com/events/57" _mce_href="../../../events/57">Portland, OR</a>; <a href="http://tofw.com/events/56" _mce_href="../../../events/56">Saratoga Springs, NY</a>; and <a href="http://tofw.com/events/52" _mce_href="../../../events/52">Birmingham, AL</a>.</span></span><br> <span style="line-height: 150%;" _mce_style="line-height: 150%;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br><o:p></o:p></span></span> <span style="line-height: 150%;" _mce_style="line-height: 150%;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br>While presiding over a mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) in Santiago, Chile, one of our young zone leaders &nbsp;wrote to me:<br><br>“President, I’m still alive.&nbsp; I have a miracle to tell you about—the reason I’m still alive.”&nbsp; He proceeded to explain that he and his companion finished teaching a lesson and were about to cross the street in front of the investigator’s house. “We had already placed one foot into the street when my companion heard someone yelling to us.&nbsp; I didn’t hear anything, though, and was about to take my second step into the street when I glanced back at my companion and saw him returning to pick up our own copy of the Book of Mormon we had accidentally left at the investigator’s house.&nbsp; I stepped back up onto the curb, and at that exact moment heard the screeching tires of a car coming down the street.&nbsp; I turned quickly and the car zoomed by me and crashed into a tree so hard that the back of the car rose into the air and fell again.&nbsp; Apparently one of the tires of the car had exploded.&nbsp; The young man driving the car smashed his head against the windshield.&nbsp; All this happened in two or three seconds.&nbsp; The miracle is that if it weren’t for the Book of Mormon that we forgot in that house, I would now be preaching the gospel in the spirit world.&nbsp; That book is incredible—it saves lives!”<br><br>The Book of Mormon does indeed preserve lives, in both a temporal and spiritual sense.&nbsp; On another occasion, we had just heard the testimonies of twelve missionaries who were about to return to their homelands.&nbsp; The last one was Elder Uboldi, and when he finished his testimony, I kept him at the pulpit to tell a story I had recently heard about his family from Richard Millett of the Church’s Missionary Department.</span></span><br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="line-height: 150%;" _mce_style="line-height: 150%;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-J2QMS7tLX6w/UulrB9-j1qI/AAAAAAAAFI0/i1VRLgIlgRQ/s1600/ogden-gem.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-J2QMS7tLX6w/UulrB9-j1qI/AAAAAAAAFI0/i1VRLgIlgRQ/s1600/ogden-gem.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-J2QMS7tLX6w/UulrB9-j1qI/AAAAAAAAFI0/i1VRLgIlgRQ/s1600/ogden-gem.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-J2QMS7tLX6w/UulrB9-j1qI/AAAAAAAAFI0/i1VRLgIlgRQ/s1600/ogden-gem.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="320"></a></span></span></div> <span style="line-height: 150%;" _mce_style="line-height: 150%;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br>Brother Millett was a missionary many years ago in the southern part of Argentina.&nbsp; One day he left a copy of the Book of Mormon at a home, and soon thereafter that family moved to another place.&nbsp; He knew nothing of that book or that family until years later he learned that the book sat in their home for twelve years, at which time the father picked it up and started reading.&nbsp; He was converted to the gospel by that Book of Mormon and was baptized.&nbsp; That was Elder Uboldi’s grandfather.&nbsp; The next two generations stayed true to that testimony, and Elder Uboldi served with us for two years as a result of that one book.&nbsp; You never know what good may come from a little thing you do.<br><br>Two sister missionaries told of the first night in their new proselyting area. They knocked on the door of a couple whose three little children had died in a house fire just three weeks earlier, and the father and mother felt totally empty and sad of spirit.&nbsp; They hoped that their children were with God, and when the sisters explained that they can be with their children once again their countenances changed.&nbsp; They wanted to know more.<br><br>The Book of Mormon and the other scriptures do provide answers to life’s weightiest questions.&nbsp; They provide reasons and purposes for a meaningful earth-life and assurance of a potentially glorious life to come.<br><br><o:p></o:p></span></span><br> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </span> VIDEO:Beautiful World http://www.tofw.com/VIDEOBeautiful-World-Justin-Cash/s/950 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEOBeautiful-World-Justin-Cash/s/950 Tue, 05 Nov 2013 14:35:00 -0700 <div> </div> <p>Take a mini "Time Out" and have a change in perspective when you listen to Justin Cash sing <em>Beautiful World</em>.</p><object width="480" height="360"><param name="movie" value="//www.youtube.com/v/awIoLOVSBl8?version=3&amp;hl=en_US"><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"><embed src="//www.youtube.com/v/awIoLOVSBl8?version=3&amp;hl=en_US" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/v/awIoLOVSBl8?version=3&amp;hl=en_US" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="480" height="360" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></object> Halloween Daddies and “Little Big Things” http://www.tofw.com/Halloween-Daddies-Little-Big-Things-Justin-Cash/s/948 http://www.tofw.com/Halloween-Daddies-Little-Big-Things-Justin-Cash/s/948 Tue, 29 Oct 2013 09:20:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KRmdWxY_jAQ/Um_QpXcVF-I/AAAAAAAABZY/qKafdGtrbqc/s1600/jc.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KRmdWxY_jAQ/Um_QpXcVF-I/AAAAAAAABZY/qKafdGtrbqc/s1600/jc.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"></a></p><p class="separator" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KRmdWxY_jAQ/Um_QpXcVF-I/AAAAAAAABZY/qKafdGtrbqc/s1600/jc.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KRmdWxY_jAQ/Um_QpXcVF-I/AAAAAAAABZY/qKafdGtrbqc/s1600/jc.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><br><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KRmdWxY_jAQ/Um_QpXcVF-I/AAAAAAAABZY/qKafdGtrbqc/s320/jc.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KRmdWxY_jAQ/Um_QpXcVF-I/AAAAAAAABZY/qKafdGtrbqc/s320/jc.jpg" border="0" width="318" height="320" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Pretend for one second that you are a little boy and your mom has offered to make you a superhero cape. A real one.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">What big, capital, heroic letter would you want on your cape?&nbsp;</p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">How about a big, flashy, letter L? That’s what my wife, Annie, sewed on a cape for our son Landon.</p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><font size="5">Not a big S for Superman.<o:p></o:p></font></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><font size="5">An L.</font><o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">For me, that big L and this Halloween remind me of all of the “Little” things there are in this world to be grateful for.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">I have a friend who, for various reasons, was forced to place his two small children in foster care. He gets to see his kids only once a week, on Monday, for one hour. Last week, however, he was allowed some extra time, a special exception . . . he got to take his kids to a little Halloween party.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">His eyebrows rose and his face grew bright when he talked to me about the Halloween party, as if those two hours with his children were the highlight and biggest deal of his whole month, and it made my heart hurt for him.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">It might seem like a little thing, but it was a big deal for my friend to be with his kids for this seemingly inconsequential Halloween party.</p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Makes you want to never miss a Halloween again.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">As a father who supports his family by playing music, I’m often away at night. I’ve missed Halloween before.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">I’ve learned the hard way, more than once, that seemingly little things like spending Halloween trick-or treating with your kids, or [insert your “little thing” here_____________________] are actually the BIG things.<b>&nbsp;In fact, you might call them the “Little Big Things” in life.</b><o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Annie and I learned early on in our marriage to schedule those “Little Big Things” as the most important events on the calendar.<b>&nbsp;</b>No amount of money, however much, has ever been worth the far higher price of missing one of those “Little Big Things.”<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VaqDFDWeAig/UnAZ6k9__3I/AAAAAAAABZ8/31EBy2khnFM/s1600/Quote+JC.png" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VaqDFDWeAig/UnAZ6k9__3I/AAAAAAAABZ8/31EBy2khnFM/s1600/Quote+JC.png" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VaqDFDWeAig/UnAZ6k9__3I/AAAAAAAABZ8/31EBy2khnFM/s400/Quote+JC.png" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VaqDFDWeAig/UnAZ6k9__3I/AAAAAAAABZ8/31EBy2khnFM/s400/Quote+JC.png" border="0" width="400" height="400" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="separator" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><font size="5">Little kids in super hero capes are actually big, big things.</font></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><o:p></o:p></p><h3 _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 22px; float: left; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 22px; box-sizing: border-box; float: left; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_style="color: #f1563f; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><br></a><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_style="color: #f1563f; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"></a><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_style="font-size: 22px; color: #f1563f; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63); clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WPEwHwX-vfE/Um_RiZ0ha6I/AAAAAAAABZs/K61-NQZCWbs/s1600/JustinCashweb.jpg" border="0" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move;"></a></h3><h3 _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 22px; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 22px; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;"><br></h3><h3 _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 22px; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 22px; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;"><br></h3><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><font face="Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" _mce_style="color: #f1563f;" style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63);">BIO&nbsp;</font><span _mce_style="color: #000000;">With a smile, Justin Cash calls his musical style “feel-good music.”&nbsp; His feel-good rhythm and blues is an extension of his unstoppable personality and tendency to view the struggle of life through a lens of hope.&nbsp; Justin grew up all around the United States, spent two years in Spain, and his blues-rock roots have picked up a variety of flavors along the way.&nbsp; Justin Cash’s natural joie de vivre brings you to a feel-good place where music grooves and melody is king, with songs that acknowledge a range of emotions, yet are propelled by his active belief that there is good in the world. You can find more about Justin at his website:&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.gojustincash.com/" _mce_href="http://www.gojustincash.com/" _mce_style="font-size: 12.222222328186035px; background-color: transparent;" style="font-family: inherit; font-size: 12.222222328186035px;">http://www.gojustincash.com</a></p> A Silly Story With an Inspiring Lesson http://www.tofw.com/Silly-Story-Inspiring-Lesson-Sandra-Turley/s/946 http://www.tofw.com/Silly-Story-Inspiring-Lesson-Sandra-Turley/s/946 Tue, 22 Oct 2013 13:34:00 -0600 <div> </div> <img _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VqshMOLstOk/UmbQa7_J_lI/AAAAAAAABYg/drXbZc-bgAE/s1600/dv1897014.jpg" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VqshMOLstOk/UmbQa7_J_lI/AAAAAAAABYg/drXbZc-bgAE/s1600/dv1897014.jpg" width="300" height="300" style="float: right;" _mce_style="float: right;"><p class="MsoNormal">My young children call the famous golden arches Old McDonalds. Cute, huh? Actually, I have never told them the real name so that they can’t ask to go there and get addicted to the nutritionally questionable food or pick up nasty germs from the play place. This is a complete double standard, because I loved nothing more during my teenage years than to pound down two cheeseburgers, fries, a strawberry shake, and an apple pie—all &nbsp;in one sitting.</p><div><br></div><div>Well, after grabbing some drive-thru with friends, I found my parenting strategy dashed to pieces when my daughter saw that her friend’s food came with a toy. She quietly asked me where her toy was . . . Ummmm . . . How could I explain that I could feed all three kids with just two cheeseburgers and a small fry and there was no need for the cheap toy? (I am an evil, evil mother. I know.)<br></div><div><div><br></div> <p class="MsoNormal">Nonetheless, dear McDonalds, though I frequented you often as a teenager and crave your cheeseburgers with rehydrated onions when I am pregnant, I must say, I am quite pleased that my children do not know you better at their young, tender ages. Certainly, this may change as they grow, but for now, we will lovingly call you Old McDonalds and try to perpetuate the myth in our home that not all food that comes through a window also comes with a toy.</p><div><br></div><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><span style="text-decoration: underline;" _mce_style="text-decoration: underline;"><span lang="EN-GB" style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;color:black; mso-ansi-language:EN-GB" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: black; mso-ansi-language: EN-GB;">MORAL:</span></span></b><span style="font-size:13.5pt; font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;;color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; color: black;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><span style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;;color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; color: black;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></span></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><span lang="EN-GB" style="font-size:18.0pt;font-family:&quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;color:black; mso-ansi-language:EN-GB" _mce_style="font-size: 18.0pt; font-family: &quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: black; mso-ansi-language: EN-GB;">You are what you eat. Do you want to be cheap, fast, and convenient, or do you want to be substantive, cared for, and thoroughly nourished?</span></b><span style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;; color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; color: black;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><span style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;;color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; color: black;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></span></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><span style="text-decoration: underline;" _mce_style="text-decoration: underline;"><span lang="EN-GB" style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;color:black; mso-ansi-language:EN-GB" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: black; mso-ansi-language: EN-GB;">SPIRITUAL APPLICATION TO SILLY STORY:</span></span></b></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><span style="text-decoration: underline;" _mce_style="text-decoration: underline;"><span lang="EN-GB" style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;color:black; mso-ansi-language:EN-GB" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: black; mso-ansi-language: EN-GB;"><br></span></span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal">Like most, I go through seasons of carefully nourishing my body and those of my family. Then something knocks the pendulum to the opposite side, and we swing through seasons of quick taste-bud pleasures and nutritional neglect. It is, sorrowfully, the same with my spirit. I feed my soul with careful, daily nourishment in some seasons, and in other seasons I fall into spiritual neglect, depriving my soul of drinking from the living waters and feasting on the words of Christ. Moderation in all things sounds like good advice to control the vast swings in the pendulum. But Christ offers so much more than just moderate nourishment to our spirits, each day of our lives, if we simply come to Him. In a world of quick pleasures, we should turn to Him first and often to fill our souls with the goodness and nourishment He freely offers.</p><div><br></div><p class="separator" align="center" style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt; text-align:center;orphans: auto;widows: auto;-webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; word-spacing:0px" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;"><img _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HIdt4cdbygs/UmbbV5P5d8I/AAAAAAAABY4/qXDs-WRzVT0/s1600/gem10_22_13.png" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HIdt4cdbygs/UmbbV5P5d8I/AAAAAAAABY4/qXDs-WRzVT0/s1600/gem10_22_13.png" width="350" height="350"><br></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><span style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;;color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; color: black;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></span></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><span style="text-decoration: underline;" _mce_style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: black;">SUPPORTING DOCUMENTATION:</span></span></b></p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><span style="text-decoration: underline;" _mce_style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="font-size:13.5pt;font-family:&quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;color:black" _mce_style="font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: &quot;inherit&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: black;"><br></span></span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal">“Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and feast upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness” (2 Nephi 9:51; see also 2 Nephi 32:3; John 7:37; Revelation 7:17).</p><div><span style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 13.5pt;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 13.5pt;">&nbsp;</span></div><div><span style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 13.5pt;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 13.5pt;"><br></span></div><p class="separator" align="center" style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt; text-align:center" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><img _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-u4fxfCv0pfY/UmbbtEstnSI/AAAAAAAABZA/ICzxjit_9Qc/s1600/Sandra_Turley.jpg" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-u4fxfCv0pfY/UmbbtEstnSI/AAAAAAAABZA/ICzxjit_9Qc/s1600/Sandra_Turley.jpg" width="200" height="200" style="float: left;" _mce_style="float: left;"></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0in 3.75pt 0.0001pt 0in; text-align: left;" style="margin: 0in 3.75pt 0.0001pt 0in; text-align: left;"><strong><span style="font-size: 1.17em; color: rgb(153, 51, 0);" _mce_style="font-size: 1.17em; color: #993300;">BIO</span></strong>&nbsp;Sandra Turley performed the role of Cosette in Les Miserables on Broadway in New York City and was part of the original closing cast. Sandra was invited to perform the role of Cosette in the Shanghai, China premiere of Les Miserables alongside Broadway star Colm Wilkinson. She received her BFA from Brigham Young University with a major in music, dance and theater. She performed as Ariel in Disney World’s stage production of The Little Mermaid. Among her favorite performances were singing for Steve Young’s Forever Young Foundation events and also singing for the 2004 Republican National Convention. Sandra performs concerts and enjoys motivational speaking and singing across the country. Sandra’s debut solo album released in March 2012 with Shadow Mountain Records. Sandra and her wonderful husband, Josh, reside outside of Washington D.C. and have four incredible children.</p><p style="margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt" _mce_style="margin: 0in; margin-bottom: .0001pt;"><br></p></div> VIDEO: The Balancing Game http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Balancing-Game-Emily-Watts/s/932 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Balancing-Game-Emily-Watts/s/932 Thu, 19 Sep 2013 14:28:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px;" _mce_style="color: #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px;">Emily Watts explains why it's okay to be off balance in life, in fact sometimes we can only move forward by doing so!</span></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;"><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px;" _mce_style="color: #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px;"><br></span></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;"><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px;" _mce_style="color: #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px;"><br></span></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;"><iframe data-blogger-escaped-allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="344" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/APx4nyW71Gw" width="459"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;"><br></p><ul style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 0px 10px 25px; padding: 0px; list-style-type: none; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 0px 10px 25px; padding: 0px; list-style-type: none; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px;"><li style="box-sizing: border-box; list-style-type: none; padding-top: 5px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; list-style-type: none; padding-top: 5px;"><br></li><li style="box-sizing: border-box; list-style-type: none; padding-top: 5px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; list-style-type: none; padding-top: 5px;">Emily Watts will be presenting at the following cities:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/27" _mce_href="../../../events/27" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">St. George, UT</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/31" _mce_href="../../../events/31" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Portland, OR</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/20" _mce_href="../../../events/20" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Columbia, SC</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/22" _mce_href="../../../events/22" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Tacoma, WA</a>&nbsp;</li></ul></div> <br _mce_bogus="1"> Never Complain, Others Have it Worse http://www.tofw.com/Never-Complain-Others-Have-Worse-John%20-Hilton%20III/s/931 http://www.tofw.com/Never-Complain-Others-Have-Worse-John%20-Hilton%20III/s/931 Tue, 17 Sep 2013 06:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xa3afkXPYhg/UjdZj4sCnyI/AAAAAAAABFE/wtj7Vr1b7AE/s1600/oatmeal.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xa3afkXPYhg/UjdZj4sCnyI/AAAAAAAABFE/wtj7Vr1b7AE/s1600/oatmeal.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xa3afkXPYhg/UjdZj4sCnyI/AAAAAAAABFE/wtj7Vr1b7AE/s400/oatmeal.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xa3afkXPYhg/UjdZj4sCnyI/AAAAAAAABFE/wtj7Vr1b7AE/s400/oatmeal.jpg" border="0" width="400" height="273" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><span style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 16px; line-height: 20px; color: rgb(0, 0, 0);" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 16px; line-height: 20px; color: #000000;">I know I’m getting old when I start having the same conversations with my kids that my parents had with me. One we've been having lately goes something like this:</span><br><br><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><i _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;" style="text-indent: 0.5in;">Me:</i>&nbsp;I made some delicious oatmeal for you this morning.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><i style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">Child:</i>&nbsp;I don’t like oatmeal.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><i style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">Me:</i>&nbsp;Eat it! It’s good for you.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><i style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">Child:</i>&nbsp;I don’t want to eat it.&nbsp;It looks gross.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><i style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">Me:</i>&nbsp;There are children starving in other parts of the world. They would be grateful to get this oatmeal.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><i style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">Child:</i>&nbsp;Well, why don’t you send it to them?</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">I next begin a lengthy lecture on the difficulty of shipping oatmeal across the world.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Do you ever have discussions like this?</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-indent: 0.5in;"><o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lra9gjjHPTg/UjeA9lrmteI/AAAAAAAABFs/iJfrR6ceGWw/s1600/gem09_16_13c.png" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lra9gjjHPTg/UjeA9lrmteI/AAAAAAAABFs/iJfrR6ceGWw/s1600/gem09_16_13c.png" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lra9gjjHPTg/UjeA9lrmteI/AAAAAAAABFs/iJfrR6ceGWw/s400/gem09_16_13c.png" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lra9gjjHPTg/UjeA9lrmteI/AAAAAAAABFs/iJfrR6ceGWw/s400/gem09_16_13c.png" border="0" width="400" height="400" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Just this morning we had a variant of this conversation. It went pretty much the same as usual, but when I said, “There are children starving in other parts of the world. They would be grateful to get this oatmeal,” one child said, “Dad,&nbsp;<a href="http://deseretbook.com/Compare-Dare-John-Hilton-III/i/5066525" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Compare-Dare-John-Hilton-III/i/5066525"><i>dare not to compare</i>!</a>” (This is a reference to the title&nbsp;of a talk on CD&nbsp;I did a few years back.)<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">While I definitely believe that&nbsp;comparison is often harmful, there is one place where I think comparing can be helpful. I have learned that my perspective is often improved when I remember that other people are in worse circumstances than mine. In fact, I’m trying to make this my new motto: “Never complain. Others have it worse.”<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Once, as missionaries, my companion and I were teaching someone how to pray. As my companion prayed, this is what he said: “Our Father in Heaven, we are grateful. We are grateful that right now we are not being chased by lions.” I thought,&nbsp;<i>What?</i>&nbsp;And then I started to think about it. You know, someone somewhere in the world right now probably&nbsp;<i>is</i>&nbsp;being chased by a lion. I’m glad it’s not me.&nbsp;“Never complain. Others have it worse.”<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-n_ditStKBow/UjdZj1kS70I/AAAAAAAABFI/x2VxoAG9poo/s1600/lion.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-n_ditStKBow/UjdZj1kS70I/AAAAAAAABFI/x2VxoAG9poo/s1600/lion.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-n_ditStKBow/UjdZj1kS70I/AAAAAAAABFI/x2VxoAG9poo/s400/lion.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-n_ditStKBow/UjdZj1kS70I/AAAAAAAABFI/x2VxoAG9poo/s400/lion.jpg" border="0" width="400" height="375" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a>This past summer&nbsp;<a href="http://lanihilton.blogspot.com/2013/08/super-trip-part-2-mexico.html" _mce_href="http://lanihilton.blogspot.com/2013/08/super-trip-part-2-mexico.html">I took my older children to Mexico</a>&nbsp;to do some community service. While we were there we built some bunk beds for some children who had previously been sleeping on a concrete floor. Due to some logistical difficulties, we delivered the beds without mattresses. When I apologized to the father, he said, “Don’t worry, sleeping on the plywood will be much more comfortable.” Fortunately we were able to get some mattresses and deliver them later that night.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">A week after this experience, I was with my family in the world-famous San Diego Zoo. That afternoon, as I was pushing a double stroller up a steep hill, I found myself grumbling about how much walking I had to do and how difficult it was. But then I remembered the children with the bunk bed, and I said to myself, “Never complain.&nbsp; Other people have it worse.”&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Focusing on what we don’t have leads to ingratitude and disappointment. Sometimes it can be helpful to be reminded of how blessed we really are. A great video clip that has helped me be more grateful and remember how much I have is called “<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFZz6ICzpjI" _mce_href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFZz6ICzpjI">Teenage Affluenza</a>.” Check it out. After watching it, I bet you’ll say, “Never complain.&nbsp; Others have it worse.”<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-indent: 0.5in;"><b><font face="inherit" size="2">&nbsp;</font></b></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xa3afkXPYhg/UjdZj4sCnyI/AAAAAAAABFE/wtj7Vr1b7AE/s1600/oatmeal.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xa3afkXPYhg/UjdZj4sCnyI/AAAAAAAABFE/wtj7Vr1b7AE/s1600/oatmeal.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"></a></p><h3 style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; box-sizing: border-box; float: left; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; box-sizing: border-box; float: left; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px; text-align: left;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-BUE3hW2Mg7Q/UjdkS1NoluI/AAAAAAAABFc/nI7npZCFRgo/s1600/John_Hilton_Faculty_Photo.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-BUE3hW2Mg7Q/UjdkS1NoluI/AAAAAAAABFc/nI7npZCFRgo/s1600/John_Hilton_Faculty_Photo.jpg" style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63); clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="color: #f1563f; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-BUE3hW2Mg7Q/UjdkS1NoluI/AAAAAAAABFc/nI7npZCFRgo/s1600/John_Hilton_Faculty_Photo.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-BUE3hW2Mg7Q/UjdkS1NoluI/AAAAAAAABFc/nI7npZCFRgo/s1600/John_Hilton_Faculty_Photo.jpg" border="0" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></h3><h3 style="line-height: 20px; box-sizing: border-box; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 14px; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="line-height: 20px; box-sizing: border-box; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: 14px; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px; text-align: left;"><font face="inherit" size="3" _mce_style="color: #f1563f;" style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63); box-sizing: border-box;">BIO</font><span style="font-weight: normal; color: rgb(0, 0, 0);" _mce_style="font-weight: normal; color: #000000;"><font face="inherit" size="2" _mce_style="color: #f1563f;" style="box-sizing: border-box;">&nbsp;</font>John Hilton III was born in San Francisco and grew up in Seattle. He served a mission in Denver, and got a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University. Along the way he met his wife, Lani, and they have five children. They have lived in Boise, Boston, Mexico and Miami. Currently, they live in Utah. John has a master's degree from Harvard and a PhD from BYU, both in education; he is currently an assistant professor of ancient scripture at BYU. He has also published several books with Deseret Book, including his most recent, The Big Picture. Besides being with his family, his favorite hobbies are learning Chinese and doing humanitarian work.&nbsp;</span></h3><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p>John will be presenting at the following cities:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/27" _mce_href="../../../events/27" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">St. George, UT</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/21" _mce_href="../../../events/21" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Arlington, TX*</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/26" _mce_href="../../../events/26" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">St. George, UT</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/24" _mce_href="../../../events/24" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Denver, CO*</a></p><p><span _mce_style="font-weight: normal; color: #000000;"></span></p><p class="list_notice" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 0px 0px 8px; padding: 0px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 0px 0px 8px; padding: 0px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px;">* indicates presenter will present at TOFG as well</p> Keep Going http://www.tofw.com/Keep-Going-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/930 http://www.tofw.com/Keep-Going-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/930 Thu, 12 Sep 2013 16:52:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">We LOVE this clip of D. Kelly Ogden, you'll be inspired and laugh as you listen to his words.</p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;">D. Kelly Ogden will be presenting in the following cities:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/20" _mce_href="../../../events/20" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Columbia, SC</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/30" _mce_href="../../../events/30" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Austin, TX</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/22" _mce_href="../../../events/22" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Tacoma, WA</a></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: left;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center;"><iframe data-blogger-escaped-allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="344" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/qyrIV3_rK9c" width="459"></iframe></p> Little Flies and Little Lies http://www.tofw.com/Little-Flies-Little-Lies-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/929 http://www.tofw.com/Little-Flies-Little-Lies-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/929 Wed, 11 Sep 2013 13:52:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">I have never liked mosquitoes (Spanish, “little flies”). Not only do I dislike the itchy bump they leave when they bite but most annoying is the persecuting buzzing around the ears. In fact, let me say it a little more emphatically: I hate mosquitoes. I am always reluctant to use that strong verb, and I hardly ever use it, especially considering that I’m referring to one of God’s creations, but I really do&nbsp;<i>hate</i>&nbsp;mosquitoes. They do indeed afflict and torment. And I can’t even imagine that God will allow them into the celestial kingdom, though I do realize that in the heavenly realm our relationship—between the mosquitoes and me—will be quite different. Here on earth they are after my blood, but in the exalted state I will have no blood—so, no bother! Maybe we can at last be friends.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uShvUmKumFM/UjDFnA2LoQI/AAAAAAAABDo/WatAM_oWVa0/s1600/123260912.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uShvUmKumFM/UjDFnA2LoQI/AAAAAAAABDo/WatAM_oWVa0/s1600/123260912.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uShvUmKumFM/UjDFnA2LoQI/AAAAAAAABDo/WatAM_oWVa0/s200/123260912.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uShvUmKumFM/UjDFnA2LoQI/AAAAAAAABDo/WatAM_oWVa0/s200/123260912.jpg" border="0" width="200" height="150" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a>&nbsp;</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Be all that as it may, I have learned what huge damage the tiny insect can wreak. Though the mosquito is a small thing, it is known to be the cause or the carrier of some of the most dreaded diseases on earth: malaria, yellow fever, typhoid fever, dengue fever, and the West Nile virus.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Such a small thing that inflicts such devastating damage . . . now there’s a gospel message!<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">How about a tiny bit of pornography, or trying out an insignificant sample of illegal drugs, or just a little sexual experimentation, or some minor cheating, or a little lie—they’re all venom, all poison. The tiniest amount can quickly lead to grosser habits and large-quantity sinning. Why do we permit these little “sinsects” to inject their spiritual disease-bearing poisons into our system, quickly moving into the nerve center of our being and destroying whatever spiritual corpuscles we have left to combat their lethal effects?<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">Yes, the little fly and the little sin are very much alike—both potentially deadly.</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oA9uhZu9_Oo/UjDJpx0DDeI/AAAAAAAABD0/PQO0y4_MpGs/s1600/DKO_photo_for_TOFW.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oA9uhZu9_Oo/UjDJpx0DDeI/AAAAAAAABD0/PQO0y4_MpGs/s1600/DKO_photo_for_TOFW.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><br></a></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><span style="font-family: inherit; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; font-size: small;"><br></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oA9uhZu9_Oo/UjDJpx0DDeI/AAAAAAAABD0/PQO0y4_MpGs/s1600/DKO_photo_for_TOFW.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oA9uhZu9_Oo/UjDJpx0DDeI/AAAAAAAABD0/PQO0y4_MpGs/s1600/DKO_photo_for_TOFW.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><font face="inherit"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oA9uhZu9_Oo/UjDJpx0DDeI/AAAAAAAABD0/PQO0y4_MpGs/s1600/DKO_photo_for_TOFW.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oA9uhZu9_Oo/UjDJpx0DDeI/AAAAAAAABD0/PQO0y4_MpGs/s1600/DKO_photo_for_TOFW.jpg" border="0" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></font></a></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0.0001pt; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><strong><span style="color: rgb(241, 86, 63); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 22px;" _mce_style="color: #f1563f; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 22px;">BIO</span></strong>&nbsp;&nbsp;D. Kelly Ogden earned an MEd in International education, an MA in Hebrew language and historical geography of the Bible, and a PhD in Middle East Studies.&nbsp;He and his wife, Marcia, have spent a considerable amount of time in and around the Holy Land. For a span of fourteen years he helped administer BYU’s study programs in the Holy Land and guided students on field study trips all over Israel, Egypt, and Jordan (to name a few). He is the author of several books, including his recent Happy Like Jesus. Kelly served as president of the Chile Santiago East Mission.&nbsp;Currently he resides in Provo, Utah and is a professor of ancient scripture at Brigham Young University.&nbsp;He and Marcia have four children.&nbsp;</p> VIDEO: Higher Tour Theme Song- Born to Fly http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Higher-Tour-Theme-Song--Born-Fly-Hilary-Weeks/s/928 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Higher-Tour-Theme-Song--Born-Fly-Hilary-Weeks/s/928 Tue, 10 Sep 2013 13:14:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p>This year we asked Hilary Weeks to write a song for our theme, HIGHER. When we first heard Born to Fly, we KNEW this was exactly what we needed to hear and experience this year and have been so excited to share it with you. So whether you are going to be at the event with us or not, take a minute to watch this and remember and realize YOUR POTENTIAL to FLY! We believe in you!</p><br> <p>And this song is available exclusively for TOFW on <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/born-to-fly-single/id606507553" _mce_href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/born-to-fly-single/id606507553">itunes.</a><br>Get it now and remind yourself daily that YOU WERE BORN TO FLY.</p><br> <p><iframe data-blogger-escaped-allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="344" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/gYHN_PbBwU0" width="459"></iframe></p><br> <p>There's a flame<br>There's a fire<br>Always burning deep inside me<br>Night and day it guides me on my way</p><br> <p>It pushes me on<br>It lifts me up<br>It moves me way beyond my limits<br>To a place where I can never be the same</p><br> <p>'Cause I was born to fly<br>I know I don't have wings<br>But my spirit<br>Knows that<br>I am meant to soar<br>Yes, my arms are open wide<br>Gonna embrace every chance<br>To dream big<br>Reach high<br>'Cause I was born to fly<br>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; (higher and higher and higher)</p><br> <p>You might think<br>You might assume<br>I'm planning on staying right here where I'm standing<br>That I'm satisfied with where I find my feet</p><br> <p>But I see the sun<br>And I see the stars<br>I cannot help believing</p><br> <p>There is nothing that is too far out of reach</p><br> <p>PURCHASE "BORN TO FLY" ON iTUNES <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/born-to-fly-single/id606507553" _mce_href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/born-to-fly-single/id606507553">HERE</a>!</p><p>Hilary will be presenting at the following events:&nbsp;</p><p><a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/29" _mce_href="../../../events/29" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Phoenix, AZ</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/28" _mce_href="../../../events/28" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Phoenix, AZ</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/33" _mce_href="../../../events/33" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Salt Lake City, UT</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/22" _mce_href="../../../events/22" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Tacoma, WA</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/13" _mce_href="../../../events/13" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Logan, UT</a></p><p><br></p><p><br></p> <p><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-td8sMxkkzqI/Ui9wQv79enI/AAAAAAAABDM/qylIK6SsVSI/s1600/Hilary_Weeks_blue_2012.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-td8sMxkkzqI/Ui9wQv79enI/AAAAAAAABDM/qylIK6SsVSI/s1600/Hilary_Weeks_blue_2012.jpg"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-td8sMxkkzqI/Ui9wQv79enI/AAAAAAAABDM/qylIK6SsVSI/s1600/Hilary_Weeks_blue_2012.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-td8sMxkkzqI/Ui9wQv79enI/AAAAAAAABDM/qylIK6SsVSI/s1600/Hilary_Weeks_blue_2012.jpg" style="float:left;margin-right:15px" _mce_style="float: left;"></a><font color="#f1563f" face="Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" style="box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 22px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 22px;">BIO&nbsp;</font><font face="inherit" size="2" style="box-sizing: border-box;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box;"><span style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(128, 140, 147);" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #808c93;">Hilary Weeks grew up in a home filled with music. Born in Colorado and raised in Alaska, she began playing the piano at age eight and wrote her first song at age fourteen. Her first recorded song, “He Hears Me,” was featured on the 1993 EFY album, and from there Hilary quickly became a favorite in the inspirational music industry. She has released eight solo albums, has been featured on numerous compilation albums, and has been the recipient of multiple awards from the Faith Centered Music Association. Her most recent album, Every Step, reached #6 on the Top Current Contemporary Christian Billboard. She also published her first book in 2009, Believe in What You’re Doing, Believe in Who You Are. Her newest book, Bedtime and Naptime and Bedtime and Naptime, features her now infamous TOFW parodies. Hilary and her husband, Tim, reside in Lehi, Utah, with their four daughters</span>.</font></p> FHE: Music & Morals http://www.tofw.com/FHE-Music-Morals-Jill-Family-Home-Eveningscom/s/927 http://www.tofw.com/FHE-Music-Morals-Jill-Family-Home-Eveningscom/s/927 Mon, 09 Sep 2013 12:59:00 -0600 <div> by Jill from Family-Home-Evenings.com <br /> </div> <p class="separator" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s1600/1.png" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s1600/1.png" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(148, 191, 185); text-decoration: none; clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="400" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s400/1.png" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s400/1.png" width="400" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move; box-sizing: border-box; border-style: none; padding: 8px;"></a></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Do you find yourself on Monday evenings, as you’re preparing dinner, scrambling to figure out what you could do to hold a meaningful family home evening? Do you ask yourself, What topic should I cover? What scriptures should I use? What activity could I do with my children?</font></p><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">When my husband and I started our family, I knew I needed to come up with a plan to implement having family home evening. I wanted to start our children off at a young age to instill in them the tradition of this gathering as family. But I didn't know where to begin, what lessons to do, how to format them, what topics to discuss, and so forth.<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">In 2008 I started a website, Family-Home-Evenings.com, to help organize my lessons and to help other families, couples, and single adults to access lessons on various topics. This website is full of complete lessons, activities, treat ideas, and so much more!<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Gather your family together for Family Home Evening: Life Lessons Made Easy!<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt; text-indent: 0.5in;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt; text-indent: 0.5in;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" size="5" _mce_style="line-height: 27px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 27px;">This week's lesson:&nbsp;&nbsp;<b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Music Appreciation: Music &amp; Morals</b><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Materials:</b>&nbsp;Gather a collection of music from various genres, a list of songs, a hat or bow<span _mce_style="color: #000000;" style="box-sizing: border-box;">l,&nbsp;<a style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 62, 189);"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">lyrics</font>&nbsp;</a>t</span>o your favorite songs<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Hymn:&nbsp;</b><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">opening</i>&nbsp;--“<a href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=1&amp;searchseqstart=286&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=286&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=1&amp;searchseqstart=286&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=286&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Oh, What Songs of the Heart</font></a><u style="box-sizing: border-box;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">,”</font></u>&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">Hymns,</i>&nbsp;no. 286, or “<a href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=2&amp;searchseqstart=152&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=152&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=2&amp;searchseqstart=152&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=152&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Hum Your Favorite Hymn,”&nbsp;</font></a><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">Children’s Songbook,&nbsp;</i>p. 152&nbsp;<br style="box-sizing: border-box;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">closing</i>--“<a href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=1&amp;searchseqstart=167&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=167&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=1&amp;searchseqstart=167&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=167&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Come, Let Us Sing an Evening Hymn</font></a><u style="box-sizing: border-box;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">,”</font></u>&nbsp;no. 167, or “<a href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=2&amp;searchseqstart=193&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=193&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/churchmusic/detailmusicPlayer/index.html?searchlanguage=1&amp;searchcollection=2&amp;searchseqstart=193&amp;searchsubseqstart=%20&amp;searchseqend=193&amp;searchsubseqend=ZZZ" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Sing Your Way Home,”&nbsp;</font></a><a href="http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" _mce_href="http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" name="Editing" class="mceItemAnchor" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"></a><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">Children’s Songbook,&nbsp;</i>p. 193<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Lesson:</b>&nbsp;Finding Joy in Music. Use any of the quotations, articles, and ideas below to open a discussion on the music in your lives and its relation to your spiritual, mental, and emotional health.<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Scripture:&nbsp;</b>“For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads”<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">&nbsp;(</i>D&amp;C 25:12).<i style="box-sizing: border-box;"><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></i></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">From&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;"><a data-blogger-escaped-target="_blank" href="https://www.lds.org/youth/for-the-strength-of-youth?lang=eng" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">For the Strength of Youth</a>:</i></b>&nbsp;“Music can enrich your life. It can edify and inspire you and help you draw closer to Heavenly Father. Music has a profound effect on your mind, spirit, and behavior.<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">“Choose carefully the music you listen to. Pay attention to how you feel when you are listening. Some music can carry evil and destructive messages. Do not listen to music that encourages immorality or glorifies violence through its lyrics, beat, or intensity. Do not listen to music that uses vulgar or offensive language or promotes evil practices. Such music can dull your spiritual sensitivity.<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">“Learn and sing the hymns. Hymns can lift your spirit, move you to righteous action, and help you withstand the temptations of the adversary.”<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Not only is it important to listen to good, uplifting music but it is equally important not to idolize or emulate music professionals who do not keep the same standards as found in the booklet&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">For the Strength of Youth.</i>&nbsp;Immodest clothing, seductive movements, vulgar language, and so forth are inappropriate and should not be praised or supported.<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></b></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Discussion:&nbsp;</b>Talk about the music you listen to in your home, with friends, and by yourself. What do you like about it? Does your taste in music reflect your mood/attitude on life? Do you use music to relax, to escape, to get into a better mood when you’re upset?&nbsp;What does your taste in music have in common with others’ taste in music? Are they all fast tempo? Do they use similar instruments? Are the lyrics uplifting, fun, or energetic?</font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Take turns sharing the lyrics to your favorite song(s). Discuss whether they are in tune with the counsel found in&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">For the Strength of Youth</i>&nbsp;and in the counsel from President Boyd K. Packer:<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">“A wise man once said, ‘Music is one of the most forceful instruments for governing the mind.’ Whether it governs in a positive way or a negative way is determined by what it brings onto the stage of your mind. If you can say that a song is spiritually inspiring or that it urges you to see yourself in a more noble perspective, the music is worthwhile. If it merely entertains or lifts your spirits, then it also has a useful place. But if it makes you want to respond in a carnal, sensual way or to consider unrighteous desires, then that music should be avoided. It is not worthy” (</i><a href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=024644f8f206c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=f0d93ca925ce8110VgnVCM100000176f620a____&amp;hideNav=1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=024644f8f206c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=f0d93ca925ce8110VgnVCM100000176f620a____&amp;hideNav=1" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">April 2008, New Era</font></i></a><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">).</i><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Is there ever a sound war in your home? Do your tastes in music drive other people crazy? Discuss the advice found in the&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">New Era:<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></i></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">“Whenever my dad and I talk about music, we get into a fight. How can I persuade him that it’s sometimes not a question of good or evil but of personal taste?” (</i><a href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=024644f8f206c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=5fccb9b658f5e110VgnVCM100000176f620a____&amp;hideNav=1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=024644f8f206c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=5fccb9b658f5e110VgnVCM100000176f620a____&amp;hideNav=1" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">New Era, Jan. 2009, 35</font></i></a>&nbsp;).<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Consider the counsel given us by President Gordon B. Hinckley:&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">“Let there be music in the home. If you have teenagers who have their own recordings, you will be prone to describe the sound as something other than music. Let them hear something better occasionally. Expose them to it. It will speak for itself. More appreciation will come than you may think. It may not be spoken, but it will be felt, and its influence will become increasingly manifest as the years pass” (</i><a href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=f318118dd536c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=2e697fae6f3eb010VgnVCM1000004d82620a____&amp;hideNav=1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=f318118dd536c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=2e697fae6f3eb010VgnVCM1000004d82620a____&amp;hideNav=1" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Liahona, Sept 2004</font></i></a><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">).</i><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">For more guidelines on finding music to enjoy that is in harmony with the guidelines of the Church, read “<a href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=f318118dd536c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=c1060e46d0bdb010VgnVCM1000004d82620a____&amp;hideNav=1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=f318118dd536c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&amp;locale=0&amp;sourceId=c1060e46d0bdb010VgnVCM1000004d82620a____&amp;hideNav=1" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Cream of the Crop</font></a><u style="box-sizing: border-box;"><font color="#0000ff" style="box-sizing: border-box;">,”</font></u>&nbsp;from the 1986&nbsp;<i style="box-sizing: border-box;">Liahona.</i><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></b></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p class="separator" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Ckc0s6DgGhY/Ui3x7yuw2gI/AAAAAAAABCU/kmX71QJGl7Y/s1600/2.png" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Ckc0s6DgGhY/Ui3x7yuw2gI/AAAAAAAABCU/kmX71QJGl7Y/s1600/2.png" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none; clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><img border="0" height="290" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Ckc0s6DgGhY/Ui3x7yuw2gI/AAAAAAAABCU/kmX71QJGl7Y/s400/2.png" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Ckc0s6DgGhY/Ui3x7yuw2gI/AAAAAAAABCU/kmX71QJGl7Y/s400/2.png" width="400" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move; box-sizing: border-box; border-style: none; padding: 8px;"></font></a></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Activity:</b></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><i _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="box-sizing: border-box; font-family: inherit;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></i></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><i _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="box-sizing: border-box; font-family: inherit;">Name that tune .&nbsp;</i><font _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="box-sizing: border-box; font-family: inherit;">Take your list of songs and cut them into strips. Place them inside a bowl or hat. Take turns pulling out a title and humming the tune while everyone else guesses the song. You can divide into teams or score points individually.</font></p></div><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></strong></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></strong></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box;">For Children:</strong><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Play a selection of music and make faces according how the music makes you feel; angry, happy, scared, excited, sleepy, crazy…&nbsp;<strong style="box-sizing: border-box;">&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box;">**Perfect for little children!**</strong><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><i style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></i><i style="box-sizing: border-box;">Print out on cardstock and use to hold up according to how you feel when listening to a song.<o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></i></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="margin: 0px; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-m_HyN5M7P0o/Ui3x7wJbK2I/AAAAAAAABCY/rg9GR32Tso8/s1600/3.png" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-m_HyN5M7P0o/Ui3x7wJbK2I/AAAAAAAABCY/rg9GR32Tso8/s1600/3.png" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; display: inline !important;" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none; clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; display: inline !important;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><img border="0" height="290" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-m_HyN5M7P0o/Ui3x7wJbK2I/AAAAAAAABCY/rg9GR32Tso8/s400/3.png" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-m_HyN5M7P0o/Ui3x7wJbK2I/AAAAAAAABCY/rg9GR32Tso8/s400/3.png" width="400" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move; box-sizing: border-box; border-style: none; padding: 8px;"></font></a></p><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;">&nbsp;</font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Other Suggestion:</b></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;">Dance party – have fun, jump around and dance together listening to your favorite songs.</font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" style="box-sizing: border-box;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;">Treat -&nbsp; Root-beer Floats</b><o:p style="box-sizing: border-box;"></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;">Remember, the most important lesson is having the quality time with your family and loved ones talking and being together. Don't stress about having all the elements to a typical FHE. Focus on the time together and the quality of teaching correct and important principles.</font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px; font-family: 'Times New Roman';"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;"><b style="box-sizing: border-box;"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></b></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-family: Times; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 20px;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;"><font face="Times New Roman">Make it a habit to&nbsp;</font><font face="inherit">have your Family Home Evenings once a week on a night that works best for your family's situation!</font></font></p></div><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: Times; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s1600/1.png" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s1600/1.png" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1DfbNjptGFA/Ui3x72eucDI/AAAAAAAABCQ/EK9vn4ozAgQ/s1600/1.png" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a></p><div class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" style="font-family: Times; font-size: medium; box-sizing: border-box;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; line-height: 20px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; line-height: 20px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><font _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;">For more FHE Lessons and Free Printables, visit&nbsp;<a href="http://family-home-evenings.com/" _mce_href="http://family-home-evenings.com/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Family-Home-Evenings.com</a><span id="goog_39905500" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(128, 140, 147);"></span><span id="goog_39905501" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(128, 140, 147);"></span><a href="http://www.blogger.com/" _mce_href="http://www.blogger.com/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;"></a>! Be sure to follow us on Facebook.com/</font><i _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;">FamilyHomeEvenings</i><font _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="box-sizing: border-box; line-height: 18px;">.</font></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; line-height: 20px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br style="box-sizing: border-box;"></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><span _mce_style="color: #262626; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 16px;" style="line-height: 16px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(38, 38, 38);">For more great FHE ideas and free printables, check o</span><span _mce_style="color: #262626; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 16px;" style="line-height: 16px; box-sizing: border-box;">ut</span><span _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="line-height: 18px; box-sizing: border-box;">&nbsp;</span><a href="http://family-home-evenings.com/" _mce_href="http://family-home-evenings.com/" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;" style="line-height: 18px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Family-Home-Evenings.com</a><font color="#808c93"><span style="line-height: 18px;">&nbsp;</span></font><span _mce_style="color: #262626; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 16px;" style="line-height: 16px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(38, 38, 38);">and the great library at&nbsp;<a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/topic/fhe" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/topic/fhe" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">LDSliving.com's FHE lesson helps.</a></span></font></p></div> Official Music Video: Say Love http://www.tofw.com/Official-Music-Video-Say-Love-Hilary-Weeks/s/925 http://www.tofw.com/Official-Music-Video-Say-Love-Hilary-Weeks/s/925 Thu, 05 Sep 2013 09:37:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> We are so in LOVE with Hilary's new song "Say Love." &nbsp;</div> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> FYI: You MAY tear up at this awesome music video.</div><div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><br></div> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> <iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="344" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/wYPxi5GeMqc" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/wYPxi5GeMqc" width="459"></iframe></div> The Making of "Say Love" http://www.tofw.com/Making-Say-Love-Hilary-Weeks/s/923 http://www.tofw.com/Making-Say-Love-Hilary-Weeks/s/923 Wed, 04 Sep 2013 15:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><div class="MsoNormal"></div><div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><div class="MsoNormal"><div class="MsoNormal"></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" align="center" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto; text-align: center;" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td><a imageanchor="1" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dLCsNdYuguI/UidkW2q-s5I/AAAAAAAABA4/1fqrygjVz9o/s1600/IMG_0401.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dLCsNdYuguI/UidkW2q-s5I/AAAAAAAABA4/1fqrygjVz9o/s1600/IMG_0401.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dLCsNdYuguI/UidkW2q-s5I/AAAAAAAABA4/1fqrygjVz9o/s400/IMG_0401.JPG" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dLCsNdYuguI/UidkW2q-s5I/AAAAAAAABA4/1fqrygjVz9o/s400/IMG_0401.JPG" border="0" width="400" height="297" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;"><span style="font-size:10.0pt;font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;color:#1F497D; mso-ansi-language:EN-US;mso-fareast-language:EN-US;mso-bidi-language:AR-SA">SCROLL DOWN TO WATCH MUSIC VIDEO!&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><br></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">I believe that God keeps His promises. And I&nbsp;<i>believed</i>&nbsp;that I believed that. (Wait, that’s confusing!) I’ll explain ...</font></p></div><div _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="text-align: center;"><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-x7reQltDIuA/UijgaaYzqFI/AAAAAAAABBk/Y5UqQuNppnc/s1600/Crew.JPG" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-x7reQltDIuA/UijgaaYzqFI/AAAAAAAABBk/Y5UqQuNppnc/s1600/Crew.JPG" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-x7reQltDIuA/UijgaaYzqFI/AAAAAAAABBk/Y5UqQuNppnc/s320/Crew.JPG" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-x7reQltDIuA/UijgaaYzqFI/AAAAAAAABBk/Y5UqQuNppnc/s320/Crew.JPG" border="0" width="320" height="240" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">Before writing and creating the&nbsp;<i>Say Love</i>&nbsp;CD, I felt like I understood the principle that when Heavenly Father promises us something—through a quiet whisper, a gentle feeling, a patriarchal blessing, a passage of scripture, etc.—He keeps His word. I thought I knew that. But the Lord decided to teach me this powerful truth in a way that will forever touch my soul.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">I won’t go into all the details because you’d read for a minute, your eyes would get droopy, then your head would hit the keyboard, and you’d be drooling on letters S, D and F. So in a nutshell . . .<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><br></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-S2HZY5_rNEU/UijgZQMSROI/AAAAAAAABBc/cRyTgzU14v0/s1600/Airplanes.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-S2HZY5_rNEU/UijgZQMSROI/AAAAAAAABBc/cRyTgzU14v0/s1600/Airplanes.JPG" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-S2HZY5_rNEU/UijgZQMSROI/AAAAAAAABBc/cRyTgzU14v0/s200/Airplanes.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-S2HZY5_rNEU/UijgZQMSROI/AAAAAAAABBc/cRyTgzU14v0/s200/Airplanes.JPG" border="0" width="200" height="150" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ntad-94ThSg/UijgaR1rJWI/AAAAAAAABBo/Wof4zyhaSlI/s1600/Couch+set.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ntad-94ThSg/UijgaR1rJWI/AAAAAAAABBo/Wof4zyhaSlI/s1600/Couch+set.JPG" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ntad-94ThSg/UijgaR1rJWI/AAAAAAAABBo/Wof4zyhaSlI/s200/Couch+set.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ntad-94ThSg/UijgaR1rJWI/AAAAAAAABBo/Wof4zyhaSlI/s200/Couch+set.JPG" border="0" width="200" height="150" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a><font face="inherit">I knew I was supposed to write a new CD. I knew it on October 16, 2012, when I knelt to pray and ask the Lord if creating another CD was how He wanted me to use my time and talents. Quoting from my journal: “I immediately felt a confirmation through my whole soul that it was the right decision.” Through a quiet prompting, the Lord promised He would help me write the songs.<o:p></o:p></font><p><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">I began writing.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">The process was difficult. Writing was laborious and painfully slow. The lyrics seemed to hide, and I grew tired of seeking. Often I felt at a loss for ideas. I wrote songs that were lousy and had to scrap them. Occasionally there would be a breakthrough—I would complete a chorus or craft a lyric, and my heart would take hope.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">We began recording in late April and continued through June. During our last week of recording, I was still trying to finish songs. It was like trying to cook a recipe for dinner but not having all the ingredients. It was extremely stressful.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jzgblnvxdGM/UijgbD2yD7I/AAAAAAAABBw/wEcBgfor7YQ/s1600/Hilary+and+Producer.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jzgblnvxdGM/UijgbD2yD7I/AAAAAAAABBw/wEcBgfor7YQ/s1600/Hilary+and+Producer.JPG" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jzgblnvxdGM/UijgbD2yD7I/AAAAAAAABBw/wEcBgfor7YQ/s320/Hilary+and+Producer.JPG" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jzgblnvxdGM/UijgbD2yD7I/AAAAAAAABBw/wEcBgfor7YQ/s320/Hilary+and+Producer.JPG" border="0" width="320" height="240" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">I wanted to give up. I didn’t count how many times I could have given up or felt like it would have been easier to quit, but if I had to guesstimate . . . I would speculate it was somewhere around 2,349 times.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">One night I had a meltdown. Tears flowed. I sobbed. I prayed. I pleaded for help. I cried in front of my whole family. They could see my despair. They knew I was worn out. My 8-year-old daughter tucked me in—literally. She gently pushed the blanket around my tired body, kissed me on the head, and said, “I believe in you.”<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">The next morning, I started again. I had poured out, and God had poured back in. He had heard my prayers and knew my sorrow. He filled my soul with courage, hope, and peace. The tears were replaced by a desire to continue.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-hIHLbxMVBB4/UijgbMe3EdI/AAAAAAAABB0/nXJhmEX9uro/s1600/Full+Set.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-hIHLbxMVBB4/UijgbMe3EdI/AAAAAAAABB0/nXJhmEX9uro/s1600/Full+Set.JPG" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-hIHLbxMVBB4/UijgbMe3EdI/AAAAAAAABB0/nXJhmEX9uro/s320/Full+Set.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-hIHLbxMVBB4/UijgbMe3EdI/AAAAAAAABB0/nXJhmEX9uro/s320/Full+Set.JPG" border="0" width="320" height="240" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">The songs were eventually completed. The Lord kept His promise. He stayed till the end. He helped me finish. It wasn’t easy—it was one of the hardest creative journeys I’ve taken. But it was worth it. I felt His grace enable me to do what I could not have done on my own. He had promised He would help me finish what I started. He did. And He kept a dozen other promises along the way.<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">Sometimes His promises look exactly like what we asked for. Some bear no resemblance at all. Some promises are happy surprises,<a href="http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" _mce_href="http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" name="Editing" class="mceItemAnchor"></a>&nbsp;and some don’t seem the least bit happy. The key is trusting that every promise will be kept and each promise is for our good.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: start;" _mce_style="text-align: start;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><span _mce_style="font-size: x-large;" style="font-size: x-large;">His promises are always better promises.</span></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">And here are a few of the people who were a part of these promises…<o:p></o:p></font></p><p class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">&nbsp;</font></p><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" align="center" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto; text-align: center;" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-IYbYa6vNJgE/UidkWxaaEaI/AAAAAAAABA0/HD-exnFXYxo/s1600/IMG_0436.JPG" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-IYbYa6vNJgE/UidkWxaaEaI/AAAAAAAABA0/HD-exnFXYxo/s1600/IMG_0436.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-IYbYa6vNJgE/UidkWxaaEaI/AAAAAAAABA0/HD-exnFXYxo/s320/IMG_0436.JPG" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-IYbYa6vNJgE/UidkWxaaEaI/AAAAAAAABA0/HD-exnFXYxo/s320/IMG_0436.JPG" border="0" width="320" height="238" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;"><span _mce_style="font-size: 10pt;" style="font-size: 10pt;">Jason Webb, me and Scott Wiley.&nbsp; Both Jason and Scott were lifesavers!&nbsp; Jason flew out from Nashville to play keyboards in the studio for two days.&nbsp; He is brilliant.&nbsp; After listening to the songs he played on, I sat in the studio and cried.&nbsp; (No, I'm not kidding, I really cried.)&nbsp; I could feel the hand of the Lord in the project through Jason and the talents he shared.&nbsp; Scott took over as producer of the CD and was a mastermind.&nbsp; It was so fun and inspiring to work with him.</span></td></tr></tbody></table><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit">&nbsp;</font></p><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" align="center" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto; text-align: center;" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XU6KfiQfv0g/UidkXZSPA_I/AAAAAAAABBE/gGxG_8fLivE/s1600/IMG_0459.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XU6KfiQfv0g/UidkXZSPA_I/AAAAAAAABBE/gGxG_8fLivE/s1600/IMG_0459.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XU6KfiQfv0g/UidkXZSPA_I/AAAAAAAABBE/gGxG_8fLivE/s320/IMG_0459.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XU6KfiQfv0g/UidkXZSPA_I/AAAAAAAABBE/gGxG_8fLivE/s320/IMG_0459.JPG" border="0" width="320" height="238" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;"><span _mce_style="font-size: 10pt;" style="font-size: 10pt;">Scott and I flew to Nashville for one day to record all of the string sections for the songs.&nbsp; This is me (a really tired me) and Ben Shive who did the string arrangements.&nbsp; He produces Andrew Peterson's music...if you don't know Andrew Peterson's music...you need to listen to it!&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><div _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="text-align: center;"><p _mce_style="margin: 0px;" style="margin: 0px;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p></div></div><div _mce_style="text-align: center;"><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" align="center" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; text-align: center; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto;" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; text-align: center; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto;"><tbody><tr><td><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qqqJqKBGpAA/UidkW1QI-sI/AAAAAAAABBI/zKRsbXc1JT8/s1600/IMG_0349.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qqqJqKBGpAA/UidkW1QI-sI/AAAAAAAABBI/zKRsbXc1JT8/s1600/IMG_0349.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qqqJqKBGpAA/UidkW1QI-sI/AAAAAAAABBI/zKRsbXc1JT8/s320/IMG_0349.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qqqJqKBGpAA/UidkW1QI-sI/AAAAAAAABBI/zKRsbXc1JT8/s320/IMG_0349.JPG" border="0" width="320" height="238" _mce_style="cursor: move;" style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px;"><font face="inherit"><span _mce_style="font-size: 10pt;" style="font-size: 10pt;">June Audio.&nbsp; (Scott has a lot of guitars.&nbsp; This is only a third of them!)</span>&nbsp;</font></td></tr></tbody></table></div><div _mce_style="text-align: center;"><font face="inherit"><br>Here's the Say Love music video<br><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="344" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/wYPxi5GeMqc" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/wYPxi5GeMqc" width="459"></iframe></font></div><br></div></div></div></div></div> VIDEO: Changing YOUR Mind for the Better http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Changing-YOUR-Mind-Better-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/906 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Changing-YOUR-Mind-Better-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/906 Tue, 06 Aug 2013 16:12:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7MKTh3EDitU/UgF9YkmdjoI/AAAAAAAAAsM/zh80sY1JOYA/s1600/07_22_13.png" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7MKTh3EDitU/UgF9YkmdjoI/AAAAAAAAAsM/zh80sY1JOYA/s1600/07_22_13.png" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F2.bp.blogspot.com%2F-7MKTh3EDitU%2FUgF9YkmdjoI%2FAAAAAAAAAsM%2Fzh80sY1JOYA%2Fs1600%2F07_22_13.png&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" border="0" data-orig-src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7MKTh3EDitU/UgF9YkmdjoI/AAAAAAAAAsM/zh80sY1JOYA/s1600/07_22_13.png" width="320" height="320" style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;">How can you change YOUR life? Mary Ellen Edmunds (MEE) shares how we CAN change, through our thoughts, actions and analogy with carrots and melons.</p><div style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><div><br><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;<iframe data-blogger-escaped-_mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Va9QzhKhz_4" data-blogger-escaped-allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Va9QzhKhz_4" width="480"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Mary Ellen Edmunds will be presenting in the following cities:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/17" _mce_href="../../../events/17" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Spokane, WA*</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/29" _mce_href="../../../events/29" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Phoenix, AZ*</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/30" _mce_href="../../../events/30" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Austin, TX</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/7" _mce_href="../../../events/7" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Indianapolis, IN</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/33" _mce_href="../../../events/33" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Salt Lake City, UT</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/22" _mce_href="../../../events/22" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Tacoma, WA</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/13" _mce_href="../../../events/13" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;">Logan, UT</a></p></div></div> What's Your Problem? http://www.tofw.com/Whats-Your-Problem-Wendy-Ulrich/s/905 http://www.tofw.com/Whats-Your-Problem-Wendy-Ulrich/s/905 Mon, 05 Aug 2013 12:11:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><ul style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 0px 10px 25px; padding: 0px; list-style-type: none; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px 0px 10px 25px; padding: 0px; list-style-type: none; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><li style="box-sizing: border-box; list-style-type: none; padding-top: 5px;" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; list-style-type: none; padding-top: 5px;"><br></li></ul><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sg4AdfUEnQc/UgE_QtmUhzI/AAAAAAAAAr8/q3QU7B86IDc/s1600/158898191.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sg4AdfUEnQc/UgE_QtmUhzI/AAAAAAAAAr8/q3QU7B86IDc/s1600/158898191.jpg" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F3.bp.blogspot.com%2F-sg4AdfUEnQc%2FUgE_QtmUhzI%2FAAAAAAAAAr8%2Fq3QU7B86IDc%2Fs1600%2F158898191.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" border="0" data-orig-src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sg4AdfUEnQc/UgE_QtmUhzI/AAAAAAAAAr8/q3QU7B86IDc/s1600/158898191.jpg" style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">I have a problem I need help with. So do you. So I’ll tell you mine if you’ll tell me yours.<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Here’s mine: My amazing mother-in-law, Karin Ulrich, turns 85 this fall. Karin has been one of my favorite people from the first time I met her. I have no patience with jokes about mothers-in-law because Karin never criticizes me or my kids. She takes my side when I’m mad at her son. She always brings food when she comes for dinner.&nbsp;</p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><font size="6">And she makes me feel like I belong.</font><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">I still remember my first Christmas as part of her family. I was newly pregnant and we were dirt poor, and she made me an entire maternity wardrobe as a Christmas gift. Thirty-eight years later I still remember the color and texture of the jumpers, how comfortable the pants were, the cute fabrics of all of the tops, and how they all mixed and matched. When I stopped throwing up long enough to try them on, I felt like I actually looked cute in them, and&nbsp;<font size="5">I cried with gratitude.</font><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">As a new bride I was especially intimidated by her ability to pull a meal together. She was, and is a wonderful cook, and was always so patient in sharing her recipes and kitchen wisdom. I still remember sheepishly asking her for some advice on how to handle leftovers. I was sure there was some secret for not wasting them that I had been too stupid to figure out.<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">“Oh, I have a great system for leftovers,” she said. I knew it! “First you put them into a little plastic container. Then you put a tight lid on it.” I nodded and listened carefully. “Then I put it in the refrigerator.” Uh-huh, got that part. “Then I wait until it all turns green and I throw it away.”<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Perfect. If that’s how to handle leftovers then I’m not such an idiot after all.<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Another time I was fretting about what to make for a couple my husband and I had invited for dinner. Again she shared her wisdom: “Always make a new recipe when you invite someone over for dinner,” she encouraged. “That way if it doesn't turn out well you won’t have to eat it all yourself!”<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><font size="6">How can you go wrong with a mother-in-law like that?</font><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">This Halloween my very un-witchy mother-in-law is turning 85. Her two kids and nine grandkids are spread all over the country, and there are three new great-grandbabies due this fall, so as much as we all want to gather to celebrate, I can already see the handwriting on the wall: it ain't gonna happen.<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">So this is my problem. I need some ideas for celebrating her birthday. I've learned that when I am willing to actually articulate my question or describe my predicament, the universe usually coughs up a solution. So I’m really hoping you’ll start coughing!&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></p></div><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><br></p><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">And while you’re at it . . .&nbsp;<font size="6">What’s YOUR problem?&nbsp;</font><font size="6">Throw it out here.</font>&nbsp;Maybe the universe reads the TOFW blog.</p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-kFPwP186q9s/UgAOwr1dniI/AAAAAAAAArs/7rdzlv9SRHg/s1600/wendy_jacket_cropped.png" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-kFPwP186q9s/UgAOwr1dniI/AAAAAAAAArs/7rdzlv9SRHg/s1600/wendy_jacket_cropped.png" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-kFPwP186q9s/UgAOwr1dniI/AAAAAAAAArs/7rdzlv9SRHg/s1600/wendy_jacket_cropped.png" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F4.bp.blogspot.com%2F-kFPwP186q9s%2FUgAOwr1dniI%2FAAAAAAAAArs%2F7rdzlv9SRHg%2Fs1600%2Fwendy_jacket_cropped.png&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" style="cursor: move;"></a></p><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><span style="font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-size: 12px;"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);" _mce_style="color: #000000;">Wendy Ulrich, PhD, MBA, was a psychologist in private practice in Ann Arbor, Michigan for almost fifteen years before serving with her husband while he presided over the Canada Montreal Mission. They then moved to Alpine, Utah, where Wendy founded Sixteen Stones Center for Growth, offering seminar-retreats for LDS women (sixteenstones.net). Wendy is a mother and grandmother, a former president of the Association of Mormon Counselors and Psychotherapists, and a business consultant with The RBL Group. Her books include Forgiving Ourselves, Weakness Is Not Sin, national best-seller The Why of Work, co-authored with Dave Ulrich, and The Temple Experience. She is currently a visiting professor at Brigham Young University</span>.</span></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">Wendy Ulrich will be presenting at the following cities:&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/28" _mce_href="../../../events/28" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Phoenix, AZ</a><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">,</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/20" _mce_href="../../../events/20" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Columbia, SC</a><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">,&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/6" _mce_href="../../../events/6" _mce_style="box-sizing: border-box; color: #f1563f; text-decoration: none;" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Idaho Falls, ID</a></p></div> VIDEO: Live to Start, Start to Live http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Live-Start-Start-Live-Richie-Norton/s/894 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Live-Start-Start-Live-Richie-Norton/s/894 Tue, 30 Jul 2013 09:30:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> One of TOFW's newest presenters, Richie Norton, shares one significant lesson he has learned from the passing of his brother-in-law and baby son that helps us all to live higher.&nbsp;</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> <br></div> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> <object height="360" width="480"><param name="movie" value="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/DsunydLJD-E?version=3&amp;hl=en_US"> <param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"> <param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"> <embed src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/DsunydLJD-E?version=3&amp;hl=en_US" _mce_src="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/DsunydLJD-E?version=3&amp;hl=en_US" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="480" height="360" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></object></div> Video: Living the Plan of Salvation http://www.tofw.com/Video-Living-Plan-Salvation-Jennifer%20Brinkerhoff-Platt/s/887 http://www.tofw.com/Video-Living-Plan-Salvation-Jennifer%20Brinkerhoff-Platt/s/887 Wed, 17 Jul 2013 17:27:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Jc2pYfyZRgo/UectUNKQMKI/AAAAAAAAAkQ/iUJTBWWSaYU/s1600/78814148.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Jc2pYfyZRgo/UectUNKQMKI/AAAAAAAAAkQ/iUJTBWWSaYU/s1600/78814148.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="200" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Jc2pYfyZRgo/UectUNKQMKI/AAAAAAAAAkQ/iUJTBWWSaYU/s200/78814148.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Jc2pYfyZRgo/UectUNKQMKI/AAAAAAAAAkQ/iUJTBWWSaYU/s200/78814148.jpg" width="200"></a><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt reminds us that the Plan of Salvation is not just a&nbsp;principle to know, but a principle to live.</span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div> <br></div> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> <object height="360" width="640"><param name="movie" value="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/JKFka_dwJRc?hl=en_US&amp;version=3"> <param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"> <param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"> <embed src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/JKFka_dwJRc?hl=en_US&amp;version=3" _mce_src="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/JKFka_dwJRc?hl=en_US&amp;version=3" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></object></div> Ode to The Tic Tac http://www.tofw.com/Ode-Tic-Tac-Sandra-Turley/s/884 http://www.tofw.com/Ode-Tic-Tac-Sandra-Turley/s/884 Mon, 15 Jul 2013 21:43:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="font-family: Times; font-size: medium; margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em; text-align: right;" _mce_style="font-family: Times; font-size: medium; margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em; text-align: right;"><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qKIUgpj1ZFw/UeQZO3gzS3I/AAAAAAAAAhM/SoWz_b-0Mow/s1600/SandraSIMPLE.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qKIUgpj1ZFw/UeQZO3gzS3I/AAAAAAAAAhM/SoWz_b-0Mow/s1600/SandraSIMPLE.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qKIUgpj1ZFw/UeQZO3gzS3I/AAAAAAAAAhM/SoWz_b-0Mow/s640/SandraSIMPLE.jpg" height="640" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F4.bp.blogspot.com%2F-qKIUgpj1ZFw%2FUeQZO3gzS3I%2FAAAAAAAAAhM%2FSoWz_b-0Mow%2Fs640%2FSandraSIMPLE.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" width="480" style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>&nbsp;</i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>Oh, my dear, delectable little Tic Tac<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>May I share my adoration for thee?<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>You are but an itty morsel of sweetness<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>And yet you possess power far greater than your size.<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>For you see, I alone cannot wield the response I desire.<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>But you, you tiny little bit of yumminess,<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>At the mere mention of your name<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>Invoke a<span style="color: red;" _mce_style="color: red;">&nbsp;</span>quick, quiet and obedient reply.<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>Thank you, my dear, adorable little Tic Tac.<o:p></o:p></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i>Your 1-calorie power has forever improved my&nbsp;<s>sanity&nbsp;</s>life.</i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: center;"><i><br></i></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">A Tic Tac.&nbsp;&nbsp;That’s all it took.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">I have a 3½-year-old.&nbsp;&nbsp;She is my third 3½-year-old to raise.&nbsp;&nbsp;I love babies, I love 2-year-olds, I love 5-, 6-, 7-year-olds and so on . . . but I simply don’t know what to do with my 3½- to 4½-year-old children.&nbsp;&nbsp;My nerves get rattled as soon we as approach the treacherous time marker and don’t calm until we’ve gotten halfway through their fourth year.&nbsp;&nbsp;Don’t misunderstand me, I&nbsp;<i>love&nbsp;</i>my 3½-year-olds—I just don’t often like myself (or my reactions) when I am with them.&nbsp;&nbsp;And that is just the honest truth.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">Shall I explain?<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">It was a beautiful afternoon.&nbsp;&nbsp;The newborn baby was peacefully napping upstairs in her room.&nbsp;&nbsp;The 3½-year-old decided to sneak upstairs, go in baby’s room, climb into baby’s crib, take off baby’s swaddling blanket, pajamas, and (dirty) diaper, wipe her clean, and try to put on a new diaper.&nbsp;&nbsp;Upon my entering the room in the last phases of the diapering, said 3½-year-old jumped out of the crib and ran like lightning to her own bedroom.</p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-mnOvt_Y8KX4/UeS_teVLQMI/AAAAAAAAAhc/wJTrqxyNGXA/s1600/attachment+(3).jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-mnOvt_Y8KX4/UeS_teVLQMI/AAAAAAAAAhc/wJTrqxyNGXA/s1600/attachment+(3).jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F1.bp.blogspot.com%2F-mnOvt_Y8KX4%2FUeS_teVLQMI%2FAAAAAAAAAhc%2FwJTrqxyNGXA%2Fs1600%2Fattachment%2B(3).jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" border="0" data-orig-src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-mnOvt_Y8KX4/UeS_teVLQMI/AAAAAAAAAhc/wJTrqxyNGXA/s1600/attachment+(3).jpg" width="400" height="400" style="cursor: move;"></a>On another lovely afternoon, this 3½-year-old found the dishwashing detergent pods (you know—those cute little squishy squares filled with soap that you stick in the dishwasher?).&nbsp;&nbsp;She then got a knife (no, not a butter knife—a paring knife) and took the soap pods to our only upholstered seats in the kitchen.&nbsp;&nbsp;She stabbed the pods through with the knife, leaving soap and adorable little punctures all over the seats.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">You may be wondering, “Where is this child’s mother?” Well, I’m never very far away, hands filled with other children or mind sucked away in a peaceful moment of Pinteresting.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">On-time car departures are perhaps the most challenging part of having a self-sufficient, all-doing, and all-knowing 3½-year-old.&nbsp;&nbsp;This one knows how to get in and out of any type of&nbsp;<i>legally</i>&nbsp;manufactured car seat or seat belt.&nbsp;&nbsp;She insists on getting buckled by herself (except when I am in an extra big hurry—then she suddenly “forgets” how and&nbsp;<i>must</i>&nbsp;have me buckle her).&nbsp;&nbsp;On her way to her own seat, she usually needs to stop and take a lengthy survey of all the other seats, buttons, handles, and other distractions in the car.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;The other family members are buckled and ready to ride while the 3½-year-old roams around, perhaps because she is amused by my endless attempts at bribery and uber-creative threats to get her to sit down and buckle up.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; float: left;" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; float: left;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eqbeAkq3YcA/UeQWkjTiR-I/AAAAAAAAAgw/dW_zK_6OjpI/s1600/Sandra2.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eqbeAkq3YcA/UeQWkjTiR-I/AAAAAAAAAgw/dW_zK_6OjpI/s1600/Sandra2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eqbeAkq3YcA/UeQWkjTiR-I/AAAAAAAAAgw/dW_zK_6OjpI/s200/Sandra2.jpg" height="200" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F3.bp.blogspot.com%2F-eqbeAkq3YcA%2FUeQWkjTiR-I%2FAAAAAAAAAgw%2FdW_zK_6OjpI%2Fs200%2FSandra2.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" width="150" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b>1.</b></p></td></tr></tbody></table><table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; float: left;" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; float: left;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;<a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IulWrowPvNA/UeQWjnOyVlI/AAAAAAAAAgk/nfpxaS0-FiE/s1600/Sandra+3.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IulWrowPvNA/UeQWjnOyVlI/AAAAAAAAAgk/nfpxaS0-FiE/s1600/Sandra+3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IulWrowPvNA/UeQWjnOyVlI/AAAAAAAAAgk/nfpxaS0-FiE/s200/Sandra+3.jpg" height="200" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F1.bp.blogspot.com%2F-IulWrowPvNA%2FUeQWjnOyVlI%2FAAAAAAAAAgk%2FnfpxaS0-FiE%2Fs200%2FSandra%2B3.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" width="150" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b>2.</b></p></td></tr></tbody></table><table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" align="center" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto;" _mce_style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-fizAtVzgRlI/UeQWjxfZQqI/AAAAAAAAAg8/GLH_uifKgz4/s1600/Sandra+4.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-fizAtVzgRlI/UeQWjxfZQqI/AAAAAAAAAg8/GLH_uifKgz4/s1600/Sandra+4.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-fizAtVzgRlI/UeQWjxfZQqI/AAAAAAAAAg8/GLH_uifKgz4/s200/Sandra+4.jpg" height="200" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F4.bp.blogspot.com%2F-fizAtVzgRlI%2FUeQWjxfZQqI%2FAAAAAAAAAg8%2FGLH_uifKgz4%2Fs200%2FSandra%2B4.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" width="150" style="cursor: move; float: left;"></a>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b>3.</b></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><b><br></b></p></td></tr></tbody></table><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">And herein lies the secret of the Tic Tac:<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">“If you sit down and buckle up super fast, I will give you a Tic Tac.”<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">DONE.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">Buckled.&nbsp;&nbsp;Silent.&nbsp;&nbsp;Smiling 3½-year-old.&nbsp;&nbsp;Smiling mommy.&nbsp;&nbsp;Peace in the car.&nbsp;&nbsp;Peace on earth.&nbsp;&nbsp;Glory, hallelujah!<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">But will it work a second time?&nbsp;&nbsp;Oh yes, my friends.&nbsp;&nbsp;It’s been working for 3 months straight!&nbsp;&nbsp;One tiny, orange (<font color="#e69138">did I mention it has to be orange?</font>) Tic Tac changed what were once the worst and most trying moments of my day.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">This is a foolish little story.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 0px 0.5in; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px 0px 0px 0.5in; text-align: left;"><font color="#e69138">Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that&nbsp;<b><i>by small and simple things</i></b>&nbsp;are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise (Alma 37:6).</font><font color="#646464"><o:p></o:p></font></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><span style="color: rgb(100, 100, 100);" _mce_style="color: #646464;">&nbsp;</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">I stand confounded.<o:p></o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-AjAbJPjwk0k/UeTAhSctH3I/AAAAAAAAAhw/nSkY__TwUSY/s1600/Sandra_Turley.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-AjAbJPjwk0k/UeTAhSctH3I/AAAAAAAAAhw/nSkY__TwUSY/s1600/Sandra_Turley.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F3.bp.blogspot.com%2F-AjAbJPjwk0k%2FUeTAhSctH3I%2FAAAAAAAAAhw%2FnSkY__TwUSY%2Fs1600%2FSandra_Turley.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" border="0" data-orig-src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-AjAbJPjwk0k/UeTAhSctH3I/AAAAAAAAAhw/nSkY__TwUSY/s1600/Sandra_Turley.jpg" width="200" height="200" style="cursor: move;"></a><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">Sandra Turley performed the role of Cosette in Les Miserables on Broadway in New York City and was</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">&nbsp;part of the original closing cast. Sandra was invited to perform the role of Cosette in the Shanghai, China&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">premiere of Les Miserables alongside Broadway star Colm Wilkinson. She received her BFA from Brigham Young&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">University with a major in music, dance and theater. She performed as Ariel in Disney World’s stage production of&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">The Little Mermaid. Among her favorite performances were singing for Steve Young’s Forever Young Foundation&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">events and also singing for the 2004 Republican National Convention. Sandra performs concerts and enjoys&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">motivational speaking and singing across the country. Sandra’s debut solo album released in March 2012 with&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">Shadow Mountain Records. Sandra and her wonderful husband, Josh, reside outside of Washington D.C. and have four &nbsp; incredible children.</span></p><br><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;">&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></p><p style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; text-align: left;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IulWrowPvNA/UeQWjnOyVlI/AAAAAAAAAgk/nfpxaS0-FiE/s1600/Sandra+3.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IulWrowPvNA/UeQWjnOyVlI/AAAAAAAAAgk/nfpxaS0-FiE/s1600/Sandra+3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a><font color="#ffffff">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</font>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p></div><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: Times; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: Times; font-size: medium;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: Times; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: Times; font-size: medium;"><br></p> The Kingdom...and me. http://www.tofw.com/Kingdomand-me-Virginia-H%20Pearce/s/881 http://www.tofw.com/Kingdomand-me-Virginia-H%20Pearce/s/881 Mon, 08 Jul 2013 13:56:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">I’ve been thinking a bit lately about two different orientations. One is couched in language about me—“my happiness”; “I can do this myself”; “thank you for my life, my blessings, my family”, etc.</p><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">And then there is the one built around&nbsp;<font size="5">the language of the Kingdom</font>—words like “roll forth and fill the earth”, “Zion”, “one heart”, “one mind”, etc.<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">An article in the&nbsp;<i>New York Times</i>&nbsp;(May 20, 2013) by David Brooks chronicles the rising individualism in the U.S. during the past half century. He quotes a study that found that “between 1960 and 2008 individualistic words and phrases increasingly overshadowed communal words and phrases. That is to say, over those 48 years, words and phrases like ‘personalized,’ ‘self,’ ‘standout,’ unique,’ ‘I come first’ and ‘I can do it myself’ were used more frequently. Communal words and phrases like ‘community,’ ‘collective,’ ‘tribe,’ ‘share,’ ‘united,’ ‘band together’ and ‘common good’ receded.”<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Like you, I am surrounded and inundated with the culture at large, so when I see trends like that, it’s an opportunity to look in the mirror. Undoubtedly the changes in the broader culture are affecting me in&nbsp;<a href="https://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" _mce_href="https://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" name="Editing" class="mceItemAnchor"></a>how I think and make sense of life.&nbsp;<font size="5">Do those changes match with the culture of Christ</font>—or are they leading me astray?<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Think back to the rhetoric of Kirtland and Nauvoo, particularly the language of individuals in journals and letters. There was so much day-to-day fervor around building the Kingdom! Even though heartache and personal tragedy and triumph were chronicled, they seemed to coexist with an orientation toward community—<font size="5">an excitement about building Zion, building a people to welcome the Savior.</font><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tmMrlRL6iQA/Udwxr3atBnI/AAAAAAAAAfc/pdsyH_AG1KI/s1600/gem.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tmMrlRL6iQA/Udwxr3atBnI/AAAAAAAAAfc/pdsyH_AG1KI/s1600/gem.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F4.bp.blogspot.com%2F-tmMrlRL6iQA%2FUdwxr3atBnI%2FAAAAAAAAAfc%2FpdsyH_AG1KI%2Fs1600%2Fgem.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" border="0" data-orig-src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tmMrlRL6iQA/Udwxr3atBnI/AAAAAAAAAfc/pdsyH_AG1KI/s1600/gem.jpg" width="320" height="320" style="cursor: move;"></a>OK. If this all seems a bit esoteric to you, cast your mind over recent conversations about missionaries. We are all swept up in the increased momentum. Some of our conversation definitely falls into the individualistic orientation: “This will be so much better for boys not to have that year between high school and college to get lost.” “This will give girls a more immediate goal.” “Missions do amazing things for a person. He or she comes home matured, disciplined, and prepared to succeed.”<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">There’s nothing wrong with those conversations. The paradox is, however, that only when a missionary forgets about himself and learns how to focus on taking the gospel to others and building the Kingdom—only then does he begin to truly mature and become the person we know he can become.</p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">President Gordon B. Hinckley experienced that change in orientation in the mission field as he responded to his father’s advice: “Forget yourself and go to work.”<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">Last October, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland participated in a press conference following the announcement about lowering the age requirement for missionaries. In his typical forthright style he reoriented our individualism. “God is hastening His work,” Elder Holland said, directing his remarks to the young men and women of the Church. “And He needs more and more willing and worthy missionaries to spread the light and the truth and the hope and the salvation of the gospel of Jesus Christ to an often dark and fearful world. . . .&nbsp;<i>This isn’t about you. It is about the sweet and pure message you are being asked to bear</i>” (italics added).<o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p>When we forget ourselves—tone down the individualism that we are picking up from the culture at large—and&nbsp;<font size="5">orient ourselves toward truth, toward building the Kingdom—magnificent things happen.&nbsp;</font>And the amazing part is that in the Lord’s economy, we cannot help but be personally, individually, blessed when we orient ourselves toward Him with all our might, mind and strength.</p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PCZyAU5mw0M/UdrW5HGL-GI/AAAAAAAAAfA/KlpoP8hBw54/s1600/Vp.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PCZyAU5mw0M/UdrW5HGL-GI/AAAAAAAAAfA/KlpoP8hBw54/s1600/Vp.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PCZyAU5mw0M/UdrW5HGL-GI/AAAAAAAAAfA/KlpoP8hBw54/s1600/Vp.jpg" height="273" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F3.bp.blogspot.com%2F-PCZyAU5mw0M%2FUdrW5HGL-GI%2FAAAAAAAAAfA%2FKlpoP8hBw54%2Fs1600%2FVp.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" width="400" style="cursor: move;"></a><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;">So, today—right now, this very minute—<font size="6">let’s forget about ourselves and go to work!</font></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p></o:p></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p></div><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></p><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><br></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7eU1cSazMRM/Udrd3yFwOSI/AAAAAAAAAfM/nk1pWtlBrHw/s1600/Virginia_2007.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7eU1cSazMRM/Udrd3yFwOSI/AAAAAAAAAfM/nk1pWtlBrHw/s1600/Virginia_2007.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><font face="inherit"><img border="0" data-orig-src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7eU1cSazMRM/Udrd3yFwOSI/AAAAAAAAAfM/nk1pWtlBrHw/s1600/Virginia_2007.jpg" src="https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F1.bp.blogspot.com%2F-7eU1cSazMRM%2FUdrd3yFwOSI%2FAAAAAAAAAfM%2Fnk1pWtlBrHw%2Fs1600%2FVirginia_2007.jpg&amp;container=blogger&amp;gadget=a&amp;rewriteMime=image%2F*" style="cursor: move;"></font></a></p><div class="MsoNormal"><p style="margin: 0px;" _mce_style="margin: 0px;"><o:p><font face="inherit" size="2">Virginia H. Pearce, second daughter of President Gordon B. Hinckley and Marjorie Pay Hinckley, holds a master's degree in social work from the University of Utah.&nbsp;She is a current member of the Deseret Book Editorial Board, a former counselor in the General Young Women Presidency, and has served on the General Primary Board. She has worked as a private practice therapist and an instructor of children’s literature.&nbsp;Virginia has a love of water coloring and enjoys photography, hiking, and reading. She and her husband, the late James R. Pearce, are the parents of six children and twenty-five grandchildren.</font></o:p></p></div></div> We Matter to God http://www.tofw.com/We-Matter-God-Kris-Belcher/s/865 http://www.tofw.com/We-Matter-God-Kris-Belcher/s/865 Mon, 17 Jun 2013 14:49:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51);" _mce_style="color: #333333;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HZsYlYzenHg/Ub9xE_H-lZI/AAAAAAAAAV4/ikoyjYMeMVI/s1600/Sand+dunes.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HZsYlYzenHg/Ub9xE_H-lZI/AAAAAAAAAV4/ikoyjYMeMVI/s1600/Sand+dunes.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; display: inline !important; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: left; display: inline !important; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; text-align: center;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HZsYlYzenHg/Ub9xE_H-lZI/AAAAAAAAAV4/ikoyjYMeMVI/s1600/Sand+dunes.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HZsYlYzenHg/Ub9xE_H-lZI/AAAAAAAAAV4/ikoyjYMeMVI/s1600/Sand+dunes.jpg" height="406" width="640"></a></span></div> <br> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> It felt so good to be alone for a few minutes, just to feel alive and to think. I sat barefoot, my toes pushed deep in the soft red sand of the dunes. While I hoped that no disgruntled sand creature would emerge to complain of my trespassing, I enjoyed the feeling of both the warm sun and the cold wind on my face.<span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:17"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> Although I could not see the beautiful red rock mountains of southern Utah that surrounded me, or the valley view that spread below my perch, I felt their majesty. I knew I was amidst the creations of God. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"><span style="font-size: 20pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 20pt;">I felt a special closeness to my Father and knew that I, too, was his creation.</span></span><o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> I thought back over the previous four months of my life, all the pain, all the discouragement. It was amazing that I was alive.<span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:17"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> Just before Christmas, I was hospitalized with spinal meningitis. The pain was terrible! In fact, after returning home, I couldn’t get it under control with medication. So, back to the hospital I went.<span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:17"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> An MRI showed that I had an abscess in my brain. I would have to have a craniotomy (brain surgery) to remove the infection.<span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:17"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> This news was absolutely devastating to me. I had undergone several craniotomies before and knew the pain that would follow. I couldn’t believe it! Another huge health problem?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> <span style="font-size: 20pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 20pt;">I couldn’t face it, but I had to.</span><span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:18"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> My recovery was very difficult, and I wondered often if I would ever feel better again. I relied continually on Heavenly Father to get me through the horrible ordeal. He did, and he is still helping me as I work on gaining <span style="background-color: white;" _mce_style="background-color: white;">strength.<span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:18"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt;" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt;"><span style="background-color: white; font-size: 12pt; color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-size: 12pt; color: #808080;"> As I sat on the red sand dune, I thought it incredible that in the midst of all God’s countless creations, Heavenly Fa<a href="https://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" _mce_href="https://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=663942446230429546" name="Editing" class="mceItemAnchor"></a>ther knows me. He loves me and cares about my earthly and eternal welfare. I remembered President Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s words: <span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:18"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt;" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt;"> <br></div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt 0.5in;" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt 0.5in;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vvf-vd5Z5Kc/Ub9xE-R-vmI/AAAAAAAAAWE/qk7DcEpFMxU/s1600/311ea33678d2fd9e6c7b35f7108a22cc.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vvf-vd5Z5Kc/Ub9xE-R-vmI/AAAAAAAAAWE/qk7DcEpFMxU/s1600/311ea33678d2fd9e6c7b35f7108a22cc.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vvf-vd5Z5Kc/Ub9xE-R-vmI/AAAAAAAAAWE/qk7DcEpFMxU/s1600/311ea33678d2fd9e6c7b35f7108a22cc.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vvf-vd5Z5Kc/Ub9xE-R-vmI/AAAAAAAAAWE/qk7DcEpFMxU/s1600/311ea33678d2fd9e6c7b35f7108a22cc.jpg" height="400" width="305"></a></span></div><span style="background-color: white; color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="background-color: white; color: #808080;"> <span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">“</span><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">God sees you not only as a mortal being on a small planet who lives for a brief season—He sees you as His child. He sees you as the being you are capable and designed to become. He wants you to know that you matter to Him” (“You Matter to Him,” <i>Ensign,</i> Nov. 2011, 19). </span><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="background-color: white; color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="background-color: white; color: #808080;"> I felt the truth of his words. I matter to God. I knew it there on the dunes, and I knew it when my brain surgeon explained to me that he knew he had received “assistance” during the risky brain surgery.<span class="msoIns"><ins cite="mailto:Kimberly%20Watkins" datetime="2013-06-17T15:18"><o:p></o:p></ins></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgb(128, 128, 128);" _mce_style="color: #808080;">There are definitely times when heaven feels far away, times when we might wonder if we are important to God. But we do matter to him. I matter, and <span style="font-size: 24pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 24pt;">you matter.</span> We are his daughters, and all his numberless creations were made for our benefit. We are his work and his glory. <span style="font-size: 20pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 20pt;">We matter to God.</span> I know it.</span><o:p></o:p></div> In Charge of Two Girls Now http://www.tofw.com/Charge-Two-Girls-Now-Justin-Smith/s/859 http://www.tofw.com/Charge-Two-Girls-Now-Justin-Smith/s/859 Wed, 12 Jun 2013 00:01:00 -0600 <div> by Justin Smith <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-aQagw8IiEqQ/UbDNKRcknWI/AAAAAAAAASU/X360yReHPUc/s1600/SQUAREJustin+welcome+homeEDITED.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-aQagw8IiEqQ/UbDNKRcknWI/AAAAAAAAASU/X360yReHPUc/s1600/SQUAREJustin+welcome+homeEDITED.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-aQagw8IiEqQ/UbDNKRcknWI/AAAAAAAAASU/X360yReHPUc/s640/SQUAREJustin+welcome+homeEDITED.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-aQagw8IiEqQ/UbDNKRcknWI/AAAAAAAAASU/X360yReHPUc/s640/SQUAREJustin+welcome+homeEDITED.jpg" height="562" width="640"></a></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="background: white;" _mce_style="background: white;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-iWfE3X9L_fc/UbDKIHZLfmI/AAAAAAAAARU/gXZhSreVLNc/s1600/Justin+napping.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-iWfE3X9L_fc/UbDKIHZLfmI/AAAAAAAAARU/gXZhSreVLNc/s1600/Justin+napping.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-iWfE3X9L_fc/UbDKIHZLfmI/AAAAAAAAARU/gXZhSreVLNc/s200/Justin+napping.JPG" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-iWfE3X9L_fc/UbDKIHZLfmI/AAAAAAAAARU/gXZhSreVLNc/s200/Justin+napping.JPG" height="200" width="150"></a><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">On April 12, 2013,</span><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">&nbsp;little Roxy Jade Smith was born . She's the newest, sweetest addition and the reigning VIP in our family. My wife is my hero. Giving birth scares me to death. Always has. I mean, I try to be cool while everything is going down&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Calibri, sans-serif; font-size: 11pt; line-height: 115%;" _mce_style="font-family: Calibri, sans-serif; font-size: 11pt; line-height: 115%;">–&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">supportive, encouraging,&nbsp;optimistic&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11.0pt; line-height: 115%; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-ascii-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-bidi-theme-font: minor-bidi; mso-fareast-font-family: Calibri; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-hansi-theme-font: minor-latin;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11.0pt; line-height: 115%; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-ascii-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-bidi-theme-font: minor-bidi; mso-fareast-font-family: Calibri; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-hansi-theme-font: minor-latin;">–</span><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">&nbsp;but wow. Most men probably feel the same way.&nbsp;Even my seven-year-old son has figured that out. A few months into this pregnancy he confessed that he's sure glad he's a boy "because I don't wanna be the one having the babies." You said it, my man.&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="background: white;" _mce_style="background: white;"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="background: white;" _mce_style="background: white;"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">How do you thank the woman that just went through that? A new car? A new house? More kids? Well, the kids and I got her flowers and a cookie-dough Blizzard. It seemed like such an inadequate way to thank her for going through the experience of having a baby&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11.0pt; line-height: 115%; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-ascii-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-bidi-theme-font: minor-bidi; mso-fareast-font-family: Calibri; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-hansi-theme-font: minor-latin;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11.0pt; line-height: 115%; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-ascii-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-bidi-theme-font: minor-bidi; mso-fareast-font-family: Calibri; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-hansi-theme-font: minor-latin;">–</span><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">&nbsp;but she still accepted our gifts graciously.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 12.0pt;" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 12.0pt;"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-G_u_t-kd0sU/UbDKH-ZwSAI/AAAAAAAAARY/-Q81lSBueS4/s1600/Justin+ice+cream.JPG" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-G_u_t-kd0sU/UbDKH-ZwSAI/AAAAAAAAARY/-Q81lSBueS4/s1600/Justin+ice+cream.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-G_u_t-kd0sU/UbDKH-ZwSAI/AAAAAAAAARY/-Q81lSBueS4/s320/Justin+ice+cream.JPG" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-G_u_t-kd0sU/UbDKH-ZwSAI/AAAAAAAAARY/-Q81lSBueS4/s320/Justin+ice+cream.JPG" height="240" width="320"></a></div> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">A few days after we brought our little girl home from the hospital, that same seven-year-old boy said something else that has really stuck with me (kids do that quite often). My wife was tucking him into bed and she and our son were talking about how cool it is to have a new baby in our family. Then he told his mom, "I can't believe I'm in charge of two girls now." So cute and so true. A future father in the making teaching his old man about the role of a father.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;"><br></span> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">"The Big Three" vs. "The Three Ps"<o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">I'm a simple person and this is how I have broken down the differences between motherhood and fatherhood:&nbsp;<span style="font-size: x-small;" _mce_style="font-size: x-small;"><o:p></o:p></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">Motherhood= birthing + feeding +&nbsp;nurturing</span><br> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">(The Big Three)<o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;"><br></span> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">Fatherhood= preside + provide + protect&nbsp;</span><br> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">(The 3 Ps)<span style="font-size: x-small;" _mce_style="font-size: x-small;"><o:p></o:p></span></span><br> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4XjnA2NEQNU/UbDKILfAomI/AAAAAAAAARg/zcvdT0aWPIw/s1600/Justin+lincoln.JPG" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4XjnA2NEQNU/UbDKILfAomI/AAAAAAAAARg/zcvdT0aWPIw/s1600/Justin+lincoln.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4XjnA2NEQNU/UbDKILfAomI/AAAAAAAAARg/zcvdT0aWPIw/s320/Justin+lincoln.JPG" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4XjnA2NEQNU/UbDKILfAomI/AAAAAAAAARg/zcvdT0aWPIw/s320/Justin+lincoln.JPG" height="320" width="240"></a><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">And there are even more responsibilities than those three for both the mom and dad to share. Fatherhood gives me plenty of things to stay focused on.</span><br> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">Kids have basic needs, like food, clothes, and shelter. &nbsp;and it's my job to provide for those needs. They need a place to call home.&nbsp;They need to feel safe. Kids&nbsp;need a father who will spend time with them, <b>teach them</b>, play with them, <b>pray with them</b>, wrestle them, dance with them, <b>tickle them</b>, take them to church, and, like my Grandpa taught me, <b>read with them.</b> They need a father who will tell them stories and listen to theirs, &nbsp;father who doesn't mind getting dirty and one who will go on big rides with them. A father who knows the importance of discipline. A father who will have the hard talks. One who gives them chances to lead, to serve, to work, to talk. And, especially, a father who loves their mother.&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-cfTrAY1cflo/UbDL0o35lJI/AAAAAAAAASE/wpMxo7-XlXY/s1600/SQUAREJustin+dad+carry.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-cfTrAY1cflo/UbDL0o35lJI/AAAAAAAAASE/wpMxo7-XlXY/s1600/SQUAREJustin+dad+carry.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-cfTrAY1cflo/UbDL0o35lJI/AAAAAAAAASE/wpMxo7-XlXY/s200/SQUAREJustin+dad+carry.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-cfTrAY1cflo/UbDL0o35lJI/AAAAAAAAASE/wpMxo7-XlXY/s200/SQUAREJustin+dad+carry.jpg" height="200" width="200"></a></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <i><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">"I'm in charge of two girls now". </span></i><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">If I think about it too long, that too gets kind of scary. Not I'm-having-a-baby scary, but the man version of scary where I feel the responsibility of raising a family that depends on me. They depend on me to survive. Facing that fact would be a lot scarier if I didn't know that I too have a father to lean on. But I do. My dad still lets me know that he's looking after me and my Heavenly Father continues to give me strength and blesses me with an understanding of the purpose of life.</span><br> <span style="font-family: Georgia, Times New Roman, serif; font-size: 10pt;" _mce_style="font-family: Georgia, Times New Roman, serif; font-size: 10pt;"><br></span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><span style="font-family: Georgia, Times New Roman, serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Georgia, Times New Roman, serif;"><br></span></span><br> <span style="font-family: Georgia, 'Times New Roman', serif; font-size: x-large;" _mce_style="font-family: Georgia, 'Times New Roman', serif; font-size: x-large;">I know I was sent to earth to do many things, but nothing has been more important than being a father.&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">Elder James E. Faust said, <a href="https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2001/04/them-that-honour-me-i-will-honour?lang=eng" _mce_href="https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2001/04/them-that-honour-me-i-will-honour?lang=eng">"Noble fatherhood gives us a glimpse of the divine attributes of our Father in Heaven.</a>" ("<i>Them That Honour Me"</i>&nbsp;, General Conference, April 2001) </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif;">As I look at my children, I realize that this is exactly what my Father wants me to be. Like Him.&nbsp;<span style="font-size: x-small;" _mce_style="font-size: x-small;"><o:p></o:p></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif; font-size: 10pt;" _mce_style="font-family: Tahoma, sans-serif; font-size: 10pt;"><br></span></div> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-m8IP8-yKVm0/UbDKG_xzyCI/AAAAAAAAAQ8/XcH4gkAyjAc/s1600/Justin+Smith2.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-m8IP8-yKVm0/UbDKG_xzyCI/AAAAAAAAAQ8/XcH4gkAyjAc/s1600/Justin+Smith2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; display: inline !important; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: left; display: inline !important; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; text-align: center;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-m8IP8-yKVm0/UbDKG_xzyCI/AAAAAAAAAQ8/XcH4gkAyjAc/s640/Justin+Smith2.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-m8IP8-yKVm0/UbDKG_xzyCI/AAAAAAAAAQ8/XcH4gkAyjAc/s640/Justin+Smith2.jpg" height="425" width="640"></a><br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> Faith and Fathers http://www.tofw.com/Faith-Fathers-Carmen-Rasmusen%20Herbert/s/858 http://www.tofw.com/Faith-Fathers-Carmen-Rasmusen%20Herbert/s/858 Mon, 10 Jun 2013 00:15:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">Last year, I had the opportunity to play the part of Mary, the mother of Christ, in our stake’s production of <u>Savior of the World.</u> It was an amazing experience and truly life changing. I cannot describe the increase of protection, love, and awareness I felt from heaven as I participated in this beautiful program.<o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bep14mpEpD8/UbDAkQco1PI/AAAAAAAAAQM/wgk1cyyX8LM/s1600/Carmen+husband+piano.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bep14mpEpD8/UbDAkQco1PI/AAAAAAAAAQM/wgk1cyyX8LM/s1600/Carmen+husband+piano.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><span style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"><img border="0" height="320" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bep14mpEpD8/UbDAkQco1PI/AAAAAAAAAQM/wgk1cyyX8LM/s320/Carmen+husband+piano.JPG" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bep14mpEpD8/UbDAkQco1PI/AAAAAAAAAQM/wgk1cyyX8LM/s320/Carmen+husband+piano.JPG" width="240"></span></a><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bep14mpEpD8/UbDAkQco1PI/AAAAAAAAAQM/wgk1cyyX8LM/s1600/Carmen+husband+piano.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bep14mpEpD8/UbDAkQco1PI/AAAAAAAAAQM/wgk1cyyX8LM/s1600/Carmen+husband+piano.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><span style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"></span></a><br> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">Because of the demands of my role, I was gone most nights from January through March learning my scenes. My husband stepped up as Super Dad for three months and took over the evening routine: feeding the kids, cleaning up, bathing them, reading stories, and singing lullabies while mommy was at “rehersolo,” as of my three-year-old put it.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">A few days before closing night, I was frantically trying to fix dinner and get the kids’ jammies laid out on their beds. As I was running from the closet to the kitchen, dodging dump trucks and army men, I had a distinct impression to ask my oldest son how he was doing.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Rd43Dan9Tw0/UbDAjy-e-0I/AAAAAAAAAQE/5OrsYwjB_74/s1600/Carmen+dad+reading.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Rd43Dan9Tw0/UbDAjy-e-0I/AAAAAAAAAQE/5OrsYwjB_74/s1600/Carmen+dad+reading.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><span style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"><img border="0" height="200" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Rd43Dan9Tw0/UbDAjy-e-0I/AAAAAAAAAQE/5OrsYwjB_74/s200/Carmen+dad+reading.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Rd43Dan9Tw0/UbDAjy-e-0I/AAAAAAAAAQE/5OrsYwjB_74/s200/Carmen+dad+reading.JPG" width="150"></span></a><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">I knelt beside his chair and looked into his sweet, cherub face.&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">“Boston, how do you feel about Mommy leaving so much and not being home for bedtime anymore?”<o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Rd43Dan9Tw0/UbDAjy-e-0I/AAAAAAAAAQE/5OrsYwjB_74/s1600/Carmen+dad+reading.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Rd43Dan9Tw0/UbDAjy-e-0I/AAAAAAAAAQE/5OrsYwjB_74/s1600/Carmen+dad+reading.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><span style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"></span></a></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">I don’t know what I was expecting. Maybe a furrowed little brow. Maybe some anger or some tears. Certainly not this:&nbsp;<o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;<o:p></o:p>“Hmm.” He thought for a minute. “I feel good,” he said.</span><br> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><o:p></o:p></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tBbQawhtPJM/UbDC6FI3NJI/AAAAAAAAAQk/6W4Xi9GGAY0/s1600/Carmen+Sleeping1.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tBbQawhtPJM/UbDC6FI3NJI/AAAAAAAAAQk/6W4Xi9GGAY0/s1600/Carmen+Sleeping1.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><span style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"><img border="0" height="200" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tBbQawhtPJM/UbDC6FI3NJI/AAAAAAAAAQk/6W4Xi9GGAY0/s200/Carmen+Sleeping1.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tBbQawhtPJM/UbDC6FI3NJI/AAAAAAAAAQk/6W4Xi9GGAY0/s200/Carmen+Sleeping1.jpg" width="156"></span></a><span style="font-family: inherit; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; font-size: 12pt;">Relief and gratitude washed over me. I knew it wasn’t, “I feel good 'cause Mom’s gone! Party time!” but more that he felt peace and comfort, even without me home. I know he felt an increase of love in our house because I had chosen to use my talents to share my testimony.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">Through this experience, I've learned that when I put my trust in Heavenly Father and give offerings of my time and talents, He will “open . . . the windows of heaven, and pour . . . out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it” (3 Nephi 24:10; Malachi 3:10).&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;"><br></span> <span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;"><br></span> <span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">One of these blessings during this time was that my children grew incredibly close to their daddy and didn't feel the strain of having their mom away from home.&nbsp;</span></span></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><o:p></o:p></span></div> <span style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-V0U6WH7Sjdc/UbDAjgbE-5I/AAAAAAAAAP4/WYvscsb1P00/s1600/Carmen+Superdad.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-V0U6WH7Sjdc/UbDAjgbE-5I/AAAAAAAAAP4/WYvscsb1P00/s1600/Carmen+Superdad.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><span style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"><img border="0" height="400" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-V0U6WH7Sjdc/UbDAjgbE-5I/AAAAAAAAAP4/WYvscsb1P00/s400/Carmen+Superdad.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-V0U6WH7Sjdc/UbDAjgbE-5I/AAAAAAAAAP4/WYvscsb1P00/s400/Carmen+Superdad.JPG" width="400"></span></a></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit; font-size: 12.0pt; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-ascii-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-bidi-theme-font: minor-bidi; mso-fareast-font-family: &quot;MS Mincho&quot;; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-fareast; mso-hansi-theme-font: minor-latin;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; font-size: 12.0pt; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-ascii-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-bidi-theme-font: minor-bidi; mso-fareast-font-family: &quot;MS Mincho&quot;; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-fareast; mso-hansi-theme-font: minor-latin;">I love watching my husband push our children around in their little Lightning McQueen cars. I love watching him play baseball with them outside, or hearing him shout, “Daddy’s home! Where are my boys?” every night and then wrap them up in a big bear hug and wrestle with them on the floor. I love seeing their eyes light up whenever they hear his voice. I love how much they love him.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">As parents in Zion, we have the wonderful and challenging opportunity to “rear our children in love and righteousness” (“The Family: A Proclamation to the World”).<o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">Now my husband is the one spreading his wings as he earns his MBA, and I’m the one at home singing lullabies to my sons. We've since added one more boy to the brood, and on the days when life seems like it can’t get any crazier, I often find myself thinking, “How can I do this?”&nbsp;<span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">I think back on the special moments I witnessed during <u>Savior of the World</u>&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">and the things that kept my&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">connection with the Savior so strong. I realized that while I was doing the show, I didn't watch my normal TV shows. I&nbsp;wasn't&nbsp;online very much. I&nbsp;didn't</span><span style="text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: 0.5in;">&nbsp;have time to gossip about the latest news, or read the latest national best selling book.</span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;">Most of my time was spent learning about the life of Christ and quite literally, trying to act as if I had been there during His lifetime. Whenever I had the privilege to be home with my family, I took advantage of every minute.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><o:p></o:p></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: Georgia, 'Times New Roman', serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Georgia, 'Times New Roman', serif;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<span style="font-size: x-large;" _mce_style="font-size: x-large;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; And&nbsp;I've&nbsp;never been happier.</span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">This Father’s Day, I want to express my love to my one-in-a-million husband who continues to be my boys’ teacher, leader, friend, and exemplar. During times of trial and tests of faith, he has always stood strong and immovable.&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-indent: 0.5in;">I am also grateful that my children have been able to see the blessings that come from serving the Lord and pursuing worthy goals as a family, and I pray they will always continue to grow closer to both their earthly and Heavenly fathers.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><o:p></o:p></span></div> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><o:p></o:p></div> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <o:p></o:p></div> "&" I'm Married http://www.tofw.com/Im-Married-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/856 http://www.tofw.com/Im-Married-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/856 Tue, 04 Jun 2013 17:13:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2RKKcmJmmn0/Ua5hk_vwt0I/AAAAAAAAANM/f7TmNBM2UKM/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_051.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2RKKcmJmmn0/Ua5hk_vwt0I/AAAAAAAAANM/f7TmNBM2UKM/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_051.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2RKKcmJmmn0/Ua5hk_vwt0I/AAAAAAAAANM/f7TmNBM2UKM/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_051.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2RKKcmJmmn0/Ua5hk_vwt0I/AAAAAAAAANM/f7TmNBM2UKM/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_051.jpg" height="426" width="640"></a></div> <div align="center" class="MsoPlainText" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> “…<span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><i>and</i> </span>all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> It’s not unusual to have a theme for a wedding, but perhaps it’s a little unusual to have that theme be a scripture. (I blame it on all my years working with TOFW where we believe good themes have accompanying scriptures.)<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> I fell in love with the ampersand a few years ago and wanted to somehow incorporate it into the wedding celebration. And (no pun intended) then my Mr. found a really perfect scripture that went with it: Matthew 6:33. It. was. perfect. <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KOEcEg876G8/Ua5jteriUJI/AAAAAAAAANc/KhdFBE4heYQ/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_209.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KOEcEg876G8/Ua5jteriUJI/AAAAAAAAANc/KhdFBE4heYQ/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_209.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KOEcEg876G8/Ua5jteriUJI/AAAAAAAAANc/KhdFBE4heYQ/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_209.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KOEcEg876G8/Ua5jteriUJI/AAAAAAAAANc/KhdFBE4heYQ/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_209.jpg" height="212" width="320"></a></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div style="text-align: right;" _mce_style="text-align: right;"> And yet, I didn’t fully appreciate at the time how meaningful the entire theme would be—not just for the wedding but as a symbol of our new life together and a representation of how I got here to this place. <o:p></o:p></div> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div style="text-align: right;" _mce_style="text-align: right;"> <br></div> <div style="text-align: right;" _mce_style="text-align: right;"> You see, a few years ago I received a lovely ampersand paperweight as a gift. I was kind of taken back at first. It had never been on my list of "things to get Laurel". . . but when I read the card that came with it, it came to the top of that list. In my friend's note she said, "You look at life with a constant '<span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">and</span>'.” I loved the sentiment.</div> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> And I fell in love with the ampersand.<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kjzPd7r3Sls/Ua95OuQ8FeI/AAAAAAAAAPU/Iy2O4fZVKmA/s1600/laurel.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kjzPd7r3Sls/Ua95OuQ8FeI/AAAAAAAAAPU/Iy2O4fZVKmA/s1600/laurel.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kjzPd7r3Sls/Ua95OuQ8FeI/AAAAAAAAAPU/Iy2O4fZVKmA/s1600/laurel.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kjzPd7r3Sls/Ua95OuQ8FeI/AAAAAAAAAPU/Iy2O4fZVKmA/s1600/laurel.jpg" height="320" width="320"></a></div> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> But I knew that it was probably more accurate to say that I looked at life with a constant “<b>but</b>”—<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; For example —<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="text-indent: .5in;" _mce_style="text-indent: .5in;"> <div class="MsoPlainText"> &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;I believed God heard and answered prayers, <b>but </b>He didn't seem to be answering many of mine.<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; I believed blessings followed obedience, <b>but </b>I didn't see how or when.</div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; I believed God wanted me to be happy, <b>but</b> it seemed He more often wanted me to struggle.<o:p></o:p></div> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div class="MsoPlainText"> I had become really good at never expecting anything and never asking for very much and finding reasons for the circumstances in my life and then just accepting whatever those circumstances were as "God's will". BUT then I got the ampersand paperweight and the sweet note. And it started a path that led to a journey to really understand the principle of faith.<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> I wanted to look at life with a constant "&amp;"—regardless of the circumstance and regardless of the outcome. I believed that would help me find the true essence of faith.</div> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <o:p></o:p></div> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> That journey—that <a href="../../../Chasing-Better-Dream-Laurel-Christensen/s/685" _mce_href="../../../Chasing-Better-Dream-Laurel-Christensen/s/685" target="_blank">faith experiment</a>—led me here: a newly married, 41-year-old woman. <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sJRV7SCm-X4/Ua5ks_mq5EI/AAAAAAAAANs/-muu8bNAabo/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_106.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sJRV7SCm-X4/Ua5ks_mq5EI/AAAAAAAAANs/-muu8bNAabo/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_106.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sJRV7SCm-X4/Ua5ks_mq5EI/AAAAAAAAANs/-muu8bNAabo/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_106.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sJRV7SCm-X4/Ua5ks_mq5EI/AAAAAAAAANs/-muu8bNAabo/s1600/stephen_laurel_wedding_dinner_106.jpg" height="200" width="133"></a><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> Don’t misunderstand: I do not believe I’m here simply because I finally had enough faith to get married. <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> Rather, I believe that part of my journey—part of my coming to understand the power of faith in my life—was because marriage, for all the possible reasons, had been delayed for a time. And during the delay, I was given the opportunity to better understand that I could use faith to overcome fears that held me back in really significant ways, how I could use faith to get me out of my comfort zone, the need to use faith to pray for what my heart wanted most. I believe for me, it was the best way to come to understand that faith is about accepting God’s will AND coming to have a “knowledge that the course of life one is pursuing is acceptable to God” (LDS Bible Dictionary, “Faith). The combination of putting into practice what I came to understand (in addition to God’s granting a miracle)—that is what got me here.</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br> And so, the "&amp;" is now a symbol of faith as well as a representation of all the things that have been added to my life in this process: my 41 years have added to his 49 years; his family relationships have added to my family relationships; my circle of friends has added to his circle of friends; and his life experiences have added to my life experiences.<br> <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bR7qrnAf2nU/Ua9inBHQe_I/AAAAAAAAAOc/-9PdTEUfRvo/s1600/laurel+temple+doors+2+Randy.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bR7qrnAf2nU/Ua9inBHQe_I/AAAAAAAAAOc/-9PdTEUfRvo/s1600/laurel+temple+doors+2+Randy.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bR7qrnAf2nU/Ua9inBHQe_I/AAAAAAAAAOc/-9PdTEUfRvo/s1600/laurel+temple+doors+2+Randy.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bR7qrnAf2nU/Ua9inBHQe_I/AAAAAAAAAOc/-9PdTEUfRvo/s1600/laurel+temple+doors+2+Randy.jpg" height="213" width="320"></a></div> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <o:p><br></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> And so much more has been added: a deeper understanding of love and hope and commitment and covenants and agency and God's omniscience and works and blessings and laws and obedience and consequences and promises—such sweet promises.<o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> “…&nbsp;<i style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;">and&nbsp;</i>all these things shall be added unto you.”</div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> These things—<span style="font-size: x-large;" _mce_style="font-size: x-large;">&nbsp;&amp; </span>many more things yet to come . . .&nbsp; <o:p></o:p><br> <br></div> <table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody> <tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://pinterest.com/pin/259731103482596238/" _mce_href="http://pinterest.com/pin/259731103482596238/" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hXM3FDyoclI/Ua94uWT1oEI/AAAAAAAAAPM/fQe1coIhocc/s1600/laurel+ampersand+quote_v2.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hXM3FDyoclI/Ua94uWT1oEI/AAAAAAAAAPM/fQe1coIhocc/s1600/laurel+ampersand+quote_v2.jpg" height="400" width="400"></a></td></tr> <tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><br></td></tr></tbody></table> <br> <a href="//pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.tofw.com%2FIm-Married-Laurel-Christensen%2Fs%2F856&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2F3.bp.blogspot.com%2F-hXM3FDyoclI%2FUa94uWT1oEI%2FAAAAAAAAAPM%2FfQe1coIhocc%2Fs1600%2Flaurel%2Bampersand%2Bquote_v2.jpg&amp;description=Look%20at%20life%20with%20a%20constant%20%22%26%22%20regardless%20of%20the%20circumstance%20and%20regardless%20of%20the%20outcome.%20That%20is%20the%20true%20essence%20of%20faith.%20-Laurel%20Christensen%20Day%20%23TOFW%20%23Faith%20" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="none" target="blank"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pin_it_button.png" _mce_src="http://assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pin_it_button.png" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"></a> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> <br></div> </div> Ring By Spring http://www.tofw.com/Ring-Spring-Jennifer%20Brinkerhoff-Platt/s/779 http://www.tofw.com/Ring-Spring-Jennifer%20Brinkerhoff-Platt/s/779 Tue, 05 Feb 2013 00:43:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VuUTjTW3u2A/URBGYUvIdlI/AAAAAAAAECk/aVtFH24xzYM/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring2.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VuUTjTW3u2A/URBGYUvIdlI/AAAAAAAAECk/aVtFH24xzYM/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring2.JPG"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VuUTjTW3u2A/URBGYUvIdlI/AAAAAAAAECk/aVtFH24xzYM/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring2.JPG" width="640" height="478" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VuUTjTW3u2A/URBGYUvIdlI/AAAAAAAAECk/aVtFH24xzYM/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring2.JPG"></a></div> <br> My first calling to serve in the Primary came when I was 38 years old. After years serving in Relief Society, I was nervous to work with the children. My fears quickly subsided as I discovered that the real lessons in living the gospel happen in primary classrooms. I’ve learned more about living my covenants intentionally and deliberately from Primary children than from just about anyone else. <br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7Jaf0Qn_z-Y/URLXOwNvBdI/AAAAAAAAEFw/v3JILn44Mu0/s1600/Screen+shot+2013-02-06+at+2.11.32+PM.png" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7Jaf0Qn_z-Y/URLXOwNvBdI/AAAAAAAAEFw/v3JILn44Mu0/s1600/Screen+shot+2013-02-06+at+2.11.32+PM.png"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7Jaf0Qn_z-Y/URLXOwNvBdI/AAAAAAAAEFw/v3JILn44Mu0/s1600/Screen+shot+2013-02-06+at+2.11.32+PM.png" width="320" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7Jaf0Qn_z-Y/URLXOwNvBdI/AAAAAAAAEFw/v3JILn44Mu0/s1600/Screen+shot+2013-02-06+at+2.11.32+PM.png"></a></div> For about a year and a half I had the opportunity of teaching a class of 10-11 year old girls. We got to be great friends. At the beginning of what would be our last year together, I invited each of them to read the Book of Mormon on their own for the first time. They were to mark any reference to <em>faith in the Lord Jesus Christ</em> and come to church each Sunday prepared to share something they had discovered. <br> <br> Our Sunday discussions were delightful as we talked of and testified of Jesus Christ and our faith in Him. One by one, the girls finished the Book of Mormon and testified for themselves of its truthfulness. <br> <br> On my last Sunday prior to moving from Arizona to Utah I brought a small treat to share with the girls. However, each girl graciously declined the treat assuring me they would save it for later. It was then that I discovered that they had decided to fast for me that Sunday. They had heard that when a girl moves to Provo to go to BYU, she gets a “ring by spring.” They were fasting for me to meet my husband. <br> <br> I explained to them that they probably shouldn’t get their hopes up as I had been fasting and praying for years. To which they responded: “Where is your faith? Isn’t that what you taught us? Now get up there and get to work.” <br> <br> Needless to say, I was touched by their faithful act on my behalf. I was motivated by my new life in a new state, teaching at BYU. Many good things happened with my new life in Utah. . .&nbsp; <br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7V-2cjBq30g/URBGXxtEIMI/AAAAAAAAECg/B0ShR9t3c_Q/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring.JPG" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7V-2cjBq30g/URBGXxtEIMI/AAAAAAAAECg/B0ShR9t3c_Q/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring.JPG"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7V-2cjBq30g/URBGXxtEIMI/AAAAAAAAECg/B0ShR9t3c_Q/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring.JPG" width="400" height="266" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7V-2cjBq30g/URBGXxtEIMI/AAAAAAAAECg/B0ShR9t3c_Q/s1600/JBPlatt.ringbyspring.JPG"></a>Imagine my joy that next spring when my husband and I emerged from the Mesa Arizona temple, having just been sealed to one another, to see a group of Primary girls, almost a year older holding a sign that said: “The Blessings of Fasting:&nbsp;A Ring by Spring.” They had made sacrifices to take final exams early that day and were standing in record heat to greet their Primary teacher and her new husband, the man who gave her a ring that spring. </div> <br> There is much to be learned by the pure faith of a child. Harnessing our childlike characteristics helps us to better make and keep our covenants. That was exactly what King Benjamin was teaching when he said, “<em>For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father</em>.” (see Mosiah 3:19)<br> <br> Our capacity to change and become a saint through the atonement is impacted by our desires to be more childlike. In our purity, we are more malleable to the influences of the Spirit resulting in the shedding of natural man tendencies while becoming more like Him. As we take His name, we feel His Spirit with us. Always. 2013 Tote Bag Reveal! http://www.tofw.com/2013-Tote-Bag-Reveal/s/773 http://www.tofw.com/2013-Tote-Bag-Reveal/s/773 Mon, 28 Jan 2013 10:54:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-3PhrWDZATUA/UQa-mLft1jI/AAAAAAAAD38/Pmm0gcP9ELk/s1600/bag+collage2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-3PhrWDZATUA/UQa-mLft1jI/AAAAAAAAD38/Pmm0gcP9ELk/s1600/bag+collage2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-3PhrWDZATUA/UQa-mLft1jI/AAAAAAAAD38/Pmm0gcP9ELk/s1600/bag+collage2.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-3PhrWDZATUA/UQa-mLft1jI/AAAAAAAAD38/Pmm0gcP9ELk/s1600/bag+collage2.jpg" height="494" width="640"></a></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> &nbsp;</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> &nbsp;</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> The 2013 tote bag is here! We're loving the colors, the canvas, the chevrons, and the water bottle holder</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> &nbsp;</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IL36Vnb-dSw/UQa6GW0ndFI/AAAAAAAAD2Q/iTv11w4xiAo/s1600/IMG_0141.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IL36Vnb-dSw/UQa6GW0ndFI/AAAAAAAAD2Q/iTv11w4xiAo/s1600/IMG_0141.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IL36Vnb-dSw/UQa6GW0ndFI/AAAAAAAAD2Q/iTv11w4xiAo/s1600/IMG_0141.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IL36Vnb-dSw/UQa6GW0ndFI/AAAAAAAAD2Q/iTv11w4xiAo/s1600/IMG_0141.JPG" height="480" width="640"></a></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> &nbsp;</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <br>***Our 2013 event tote bag will only be available to attendees registered for the Full-Weekend or Saturday Only (not Friday Only). Each attendee will receive their bag on Saturday morning. If there are extra bags at the end of the tour in November, we will sell them online. Can’t wait for you to receive yours!</div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> </div> 10 Great Freezer Meals http://www.tofw.com/10-Great-Freezer-Meals-LDS-Living-Kaela-Worthen/s/772 http://www.tofw.com/10-Great-Freezer-Meals-LDS-Living-Kaela-Worthen/s/772 Fri, 25 Jan 2013 11:48:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living, Kaela Worthen <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ip4zZBoTT2I/UQLSpk7Gl-I/AAAAAAAAD0o/CqDlAc1mu2s/s1600/freezermeals.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ip4zZBoTT2I/UQLSpk7Gl-I/AAAAAAAAD0o/CqDlAc1mu2s/s1600/freezermeals.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ip4zZBoTT2I/UQLSpk7Gl-I/AAAAAAAAD0o/CqDlAc1mu2s/s1600/freezermeals.jpg" width="640" height="388" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ip4zZBoTT2I/UQLSpk7Gl-I/AAAAAAAAD0o/CqDlAc1mu2s/s1600/freezermeals.jpg"></a></div> <br> Fast and delicious and from our own ovens is a combination that we definitely support around here. Enjoy these 10 Freezer Meals from LDS Living!<br> <br> <i>I’ve recently become a devout convert to freezer meals. It takes roughly the same amount of time to cook and shred eight pounds of chicken as it does two, a negligable amount of additional time to chop three onions instead of one, and it means that some days, your meal prep amounts to pulling something out of the freezer, dropping it in the slow cooker, and coming home to the delicious aroma of dinner. What’s not to love?</i><br> <i><br></i> <i>Get the recipes at <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/71472-speedy-dinners-10-freezer-meals-youll-love" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/71472-speedy-dinners-10-freezer-meals-youll-love">ldsliving.com</a>.</i> Feed Zone For Girls http://www.tofw.com/Feed-Zone-Girls-Chrislyn-Woolston-Director-TOFW/s/771 http://www.tofw.com/Feed-Zone-Girls-Chrislyn-Woolston-Director-TOFW/s/771 Thu, 24 Jan 2013 11:54:00 -0700 <div> by Chrislyn Woolston, Director of TOFW <br /> </div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-5S0-DBe5jdw/UQGCAbnzBPI/AAAAAAAADxI/xqlto3E6pUU/s1600/Feed+Zone.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-5S0-DBe5jdw/UQGCAbnzBPI/AAAAAAAADxI/xqlto3E6pUU/s1600/Feed+Zone.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-5S0-DBe5jdw/UQGCAbnzBPI/AAAAAAAADxI/xqlto3E6pUU/s1600/Feed+Zone.jpg" width="640" height="422" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-5S0-DBe5jdw/UQGCAbnzBPI/AAAAAAAADxI/xqlto3E6pUU/s1600/Feed+Zone.jpg"></a></div> <br> My husband is an avid cyclist and for some odd reason gets quite a thrill out of doing a 206 mile race from Logan, UT to Jackson Hole, WY each September. Oh…and did I mention it’s in one day? And no, I am not anything like him and am not sure what I would even think about on a bike for longer than an hour. But I can tell you that I love to be the “support crew.” There is something so energizing about following in the car, cheering him up the hills, and best of all, giving him the food, water, and hug he needs at the designated “FEED ZONES” along the route.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Vtm_O9eEwQA/UQGCCBUhQpI/AAAAAAAADxc/b5dUykldzB0/s1600/LOTOJA+Chrislyn+011.JPG" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Vtm_O9eEwQA/UQGCCBUhQpI/AAAAAAAADxc/b5dUykldzB0/s1600/LOTOJA+Chrislyn+011.JPG" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Vtm_O9eEwQA/UQGCCBUhQpI/AAAAAAAADxc/b5dUykldzB0/s1600/LOTOJA+Chrislyn+011.JPG" width="240" height="320" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Vtm_O9eEwQA/UQGCCBUhQpI/AAAAAAAADxc/b5dUykldzB0/s1600/LOTOJA+Chrislyn+011.JPG"></a></div> There are times when those feed zones literally save his life, and there are other times when all he needs is to switch out a water bottle and be on his way again. But, no matter what, every feed zone is vital to his finishing.<br> <br> Now, why in the world am I writing about this? Well, last summer I was invited to go back to Logan, UT but this time to speak to young girls at the event, Retreat for Girls. As I was speaking to those girls, it occurred to me that they were at a “FEED ZONE,” making a quick stop to be recharged, replenished, and reassured that what was inside of them was bigger and stronger than any journey in front of them.<br> <br> And at this stage of their lives, when they are learning who they really are, deciding what they want to feed their spirits with and what course to take, this retreat or “feed zone” was one of the most important places they could have stopped (especially because there were no boys there!).<br> <br> I watched those girls that week, and was amazed at how GOOD they were. While speakers like Emily Freeman, Hank Smith, and Ardeth Kapp spoke to them, they were eager to take notes and open their scriptures. As music artists, such as Carmen Rasmussen and Mercy River performed, they were reminded of the importance of listening to positive music. And as they settled into their rooms at night, they listened to their counselors teach simple but profound devotionals on prayer, testimony and other critical topics for young girls.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-G8btxd2TppM/UQGCA-m7uhI/AAAAAAAADxU/vlGnAQ-hT5U/s1600/Girls+laying+on+grass.JPG" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-G8btxd2TppM/UQGCA-m7uhI/AAAAAAAADxU/vlGnAQ-hT5U/s1600/Girls+laying+on+grass.JPG" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-G8btxd2TppM/UQGCA-m7uhI/AAAAAAAADxU/vlGnAQ-hT5U/s1600/Girls+laying+on+grass.JPG" width="320" height="240" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-G8btxd2TppM/UQGCA-m7uhI/AAAAAAAADxU/vlGnAQ-hT5U/s1600/Girls+laying+on+grass.JPG"></a></div> I watched these girls serve. I watched these girls study. I watched these girls laugh. And most of all, I watched these girls grow.<br> <br> And so today, I reach out to you, the mothers, grandmothers and leaders of these girls and invite you to ask yourself, “Does the girl in my life need to stop at a FEED ZONE this summer? Does she need an opportunity to step away from the world and be reminded of who she really is?” If so, I hope you’ll encourage her to join us this summer at RETREAT for GIRLS. We promise she will be well fed.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-SyM7Qjp4elQ/UQGCB2HW_hI/AAAAAAAADxk/bDpSyI-2IkU/s1600/RetreatforGirls.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-SyM7Qjp4elQ/UQGCB2HW_hI/AAAAAAAADxk/bDpSyI-2IkU/s1600/RetreatforGirls.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-SyM7Qjp4elQ/UQGCB2HW_hI/AAAAAAAADxk/bDpSyI-2IkU/s1600/RetreatforGirls.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-SyM7Qjp4elQ/UQGCB2HW_hI/AAAAAAAADxk/bDpSyI-2IkU/s1600/RetreatforGirls.jpg"></a></div> Visit <a href="http://www.retreatforgirls.com/" _mce_href="http://www.retreatforgirls.com/">www.RetreatforGirls.com</a> for all of the registration details, and make sure you don’t wait...it sells out quickly!<br> <br> P.S. Do you know a college age girl that would make a perfect COUNSELOR for these girls? If so, Retreat for Girls is accepting applications for these spots through April 1st.<br> <br> <br> <i>***Retreat for Girls is a partner of Time Out for Women and is separate from the Time Out for Girls weekend program that is part of TOFW’s 2013 Higher Tour.&nbsp;</i><br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KZGJQ6rlnU8/UQGKv7cJe1I/AAAAAAAADzM/lZUOmye5wAU/s1600/CW+cropped.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KZGJQ6rlnU8/UQGKv7cJe1I/AAAAAAAADzM/lZUOmye5wAU/s1600/CW+cropped.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KZGJQ6rlnU8/UQGKv7cJe1I/AAAAAAAADzM/lZUOmye5wAU/s1600/CW+cropped.jpg" width="166" height="200" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KZGJQ6rlnU8/UQGKv7cJe1I/AAAAAAAADzM/lZUOmye5wAU/s1600/CW+cropped.jpg"></a></div> Chrislyn Woolston, director of Time Out for Women, &nbsp;is a mother of one energetic 2-year old girl, a wife of an avid cyclist, and an addict of chocolate covered cinnamon bears. While serving her mission in Denver Colorado, she grew a deep love for serving in and outside of the church, especially when it comes to the youth. Her current goal is to find joy in the reality that there is no such thing as “balance in motherhood” and as long as she is leaning forward, she is moving in the right direction.<i> &nbsp;</i> VIDEO: Garage Inspiration http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Garage-Inspiration-Heidi-Swinton/s/769 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Garage-Inspiration-Heidi-Swinton/s/769 Wed, 23 Jan 2013 16:28:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-M-qWMIxmuXE/UQB2QdRK8CI/AAAAAAAADvw/lAl0OfkfHlM/s1600/shed.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-M-qWMIxmuXE/UQB2QdRK8CI/AAAAAAAADvw/lAl0OfkfHlM/s1600/shed.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-M-qWMIxmuXE/UQB2QdRK8CI/AAAAAAAADvw/lAl0OfkfHlM/s1600/shed.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-M-qWMIxmuXE/UQB2QdRK8CI/AAAAAAAADvw/lAl0OfkfHlM/s1600/shed.jpg" height="320" width="227"></a></div> Meet the women who heeded Thomas S. Monson's call as a young Bishop to canvas the ward and seek the one. We seek and find Jesus in some of the most interesting places.<br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/a451W8nNkUM" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/a451W8nNkUM" width="640"></iframe> Everyday Shortcuts http://www.tofw.com/Everyday-Shortcuts-LDS-Living-Staff/s/764 http://www.tofw.com/Everyday-Shortcuts-LDS-Living-Staff/s/764 Fri, 18 Jan 2013 00:57:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living Staff <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> &nbsp;</div> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-g2a7M7o7918/UPg73gdtQ0I/AAAAAAAADkw/WFOH4mxXZlM/s1600/clock.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-g2a7M7o7918/UPg73gdtQ0I/AAAAAAAADkw/WFOH4mxXZlM/s1600/clock.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-g2a7M7o7918/UPg73gdtQ0I/AAAAAAAADkw/WFOH4mxXZlM/s1600/clock.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-g2a7M7o7918/UPg73gdtQ0I/AAAAAAAADkw/WFOH4mxXZlM/s1600/clock.jpg"></a><span style="text-align: left; line-height: 18px; font-family: inherit; background-color: white;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: inherit; line-height: 18px; text-align: left;"><span style="text-align: left; line-height: 18px; font-family: inherit; background-color: white;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: inherit; line-height: 18px; text-align: left;">If you're like us, and we're pretty sure you are, you would LOVE just a little bit of extra time in the 24 hours that makes up a day. We can't make a day any longer, but we can share some everyday tips that just might save you a few minutes.</span></span><br> <br> <em>Wouldn't it be nice if we could save up time by cutting out the little ways we waste it, or getting two things done at once the right way? Start 2013 right by implementing some tips that have been tried, tested, and proven to help save time. </em><br> <br> <br> Read more at <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/71338-lifestyle-everyday-shortcuts" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/71338-lifestyle-everyday-shortcuts">ldsliving.com</a>. <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> &nbsp;</div> Just A Messenger http://www.tofw.com/Just-Messenger-Chris-Williams/s/760 http://www.tofw.com/Just-Messenger-Chris-Williams/s/760 Mon, 14 Jan 2013 00:52:00 -0700 <div> </div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PB-_4PxNeok/UPCksfvxFXI/AAAAAAAADc8/9_n66bwPj-A/s1600/124823783.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PB-_4PxNeok/UPCksfvxFXI/AAAAAAAADc8/9_n66bwPj-A/s1600/124823783.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PB-_4PxNeok/UPCksfvxFXI/AAAAAAAADc8/9_n66bwPj-A/s1600/124823783.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PB-_4PxNeok/UPCksfvxFXI/AAAAAAAADc8/9_n66bwPj-A/s1600/124823783.jpg"></a></div> <br> “Come to the hospital as soon as you can, Arli has broken her arm.” I had just landed at the Salt Lake airport returning from a business trip, turned on my phone to check my voicemail and was greeted by that unsettling message about my daughter. I called my wife to tell her I was on the way and was assured that Arli was going to be fine. En route, my thoughts unexpectedly shifted from my daughter’s arm to a family I knew, but hadn’t thought of in months. Initially I thought it was odd that I would think of them when I was so focused on my daughter.<br> <br> It had been about a year since their son had taken his own life and as I wondered how they were doing, the request, “Will you call my parents and tell them that I love them?” came into my mind. I immediately felt it was their departed son making this request of me, and that I needed to call them, right in that moment.<br> <br> The boy’s mother answered and I explained why I was calling and relayed to them the message I believed I had received from their son. I could hear the immediate emotion in her voice as she explained to me it was their son’s birthday that very day. It brought a great deal of peace to a grieving mother and father to receive a beautiful expression of love and hope from their son through me.<br> <br> It was especially interesting for me because I had wondered so many times after the passing of my wife five years ago if she was pleased with how I’ve tried to raise our surviving two sons. As many times as I’ve desired an answer, I had never perceived any direct indication of how she felt. <br> <br> And then this past January I spoke at a fireside for single adults. After the fireside I was approached by a woman who related a near-death experience she endured years ago, noting that since then she felt more “in-tune” with things on the other side of the veil. I listened with interest and she explained that she didn’t know why, but as she listened to me speak during the fireside, she had a distinct phrase come into her mind with the impression she needed to relay it to me. She said that my wife wanted her to tell me that, “She is so proud of you!” And there I had my answer.<br> <br> Although these are remarkable experiences, I think the tender mercies they really exemplify are the simple expressions of love and admiration that can be so easy for us to give, but make such a huge difference. We just need to be open to the inspiration, and then act on it when it comes.<br> <div> <br></div> 5 Ways to Get Your Kids Talking http://www.tofw.com/5-Ways-Get-Your-Kids-Talking-LDS-Living-Dr-Cindy-Dormer/s/759 http://www.tofw.com/5-Ways-Get-Your-Kids-Talking-LDS-Living-Dr-Cindy-Dormer/s/759 Fri, 11 Jan 2013 16:31:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living, Dr. Cindy Dormer <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L5zWb6sfAmo/UPCf42st87I/AAAAAAAADbo/eCNw7dlUdYg/s1600/talkingtokids.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L5zWb6sfAmo/UPCf42st87I/AAAAAAAADbo/eCNw7dlUdYg/s1600/talkingtokids.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L5zWb6sfAmo/UPCf42st87I/AAAAAAAADbo/eCNw7dlUdYg/s1600/talkingtokids.jpg" width="640" height="388" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L5zWb6sfAmo/UPCf42st87I/AAAAAAAADbo/eCNw7dlUdYg/s1600/talkingtokids.jpg"></a></div> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></span> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">Getting kids and teenagers to talk can sometimes be a bit tricky, and we figured we weren't the only ones who sometimes feel stumped with this. So when we saw this article from LDS Living, we knew we had to share it with you. Enjoy these great tips! Let us know if you try one or two-or if you have your own tips to share-and how it goes!</span><br> <br> <i>If you're like me, you want your kids to fill you in on everything that goes on in their school day. But when you ask them about it, you receive little more than, "Fine." What else can you do to get your kids to talk to you?</i><br> <i><br></i> Read these great tips at <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/71407-5-ways-to-get-your-kids-talking" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/71407-5-ways-to-get-your-kids-talking">ldsliving.com</a>.<br> <i><br></i> <i><br></i> VIDEO: Jump In! http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Jump-Kris-Belcher/s/758 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Jump-Kris-Belcher/s/758 Fri, 11 Jan 2013 10:27:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-X5NlBTc-710/UPBKweu7FPI/AAAAAAAADaU/YNIqKDe9Psw/s1600/pool.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-X5NlBTc-710/UPBKweu7FPI/AAAAAAAADaU/YNIqKDe9Psw/s1600/pool.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-X5NlBTc-710/UPBKweu7FPI/AAAAAAAADaU/YNIqKDe9Psw/s1600/pool.jpg" width="212" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-X5NlBTc-710/UPBKweu7FPI/AAAAAAAADaU/YNIqKDe9Psw/s1600/pool.jpg"></a></div> What do you do when your child refuses to shower? Kris Belcher has answers! And a challenge for each of us to "jump in."<br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/X4au7o71ejQ" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/X4au7o71ejQ" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><br> Healing on the Inside http://www.tofw.com/Healing-Inside-Merrilee%20-Boyack/s/755 http://www.tofw.com/Healing-Inside-Merrilee%20-Boyack/s/755 Thu, 10 Jan 2013 20:59:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="text-align: left; clear: both;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-V6OZpuXsyUs/UOyO0IpQvWI/AAAAAAAADU8/6uAhUyfWHSg/s1600/78405352.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-V6OZpuXsyUs/UOyO0IpQvWI/AAAAAAAADU8/6uAhUyfWHSg/s1600/78405352.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-V6OZpuXsyUs/UOyO0IpQvWI/AAAAAAAADU8/6uAhUyfWHSg/s1600/78405352.jpg" width="355" height="400" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-V6OZpuXsyUs/UOyO0IpQvWI/AAAAAAAADU8/6uAhUyfWHSg/s1600/78405352.jpg"></a><br> It’s been four years since I discovered the lump in my breast. &nbsp;I had no idea what was in store for me then. &nbsp;And I had no idea of the journey of learning and suffering and changing and growing that would occur after that fateful day.<br> <br> Through the entire experience, I’ve learned a great deal about healing. I’ve had a lot of experience with physical healing after suffering through a radical mastectomy, chemotherapy, radiation, and then five surgeries to rearrange the front of my body. Physical healing takes time. No matter how young or old you are, it just takes time. And physical healing takes patience—patience with your body, with others, with time, with yourself.<br> <br> Through the physical healing, I’ve learned about the importance of light, and water, and love. &nbsp;Getting outside and turning my face up to the sun would fill me with a healing purification that is difficult to describe. There is life in light. <br> <br> Water became important as well both to restore my body’s healing properties as well as to rid my body of the toxins being used to kill the cancer. &nbsp;Water nourished my body. There is life in water.<br> <br> I healed fastest when I let love come into my life. I still weep when I think of the senior woman in my ward bringing me a basket with things to help—soft pink socks, a lovely warm robe, little things to cheer my day—even though she had so little. I weep when I remember my sister rushing to my side when I was having an adverse reaction and holding my hands while I suffered. I weep when I think of my dear husband bringing meal after meal to my bed with a little flower or a fresh strawberry. Every day, love came to me and helped me heal. There is life in love.<br> <br> What I did not know then but I understand now is that physical healing is just the start. There is an emotional and spiritual healing which follows.<br> <br></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aziae4IX0Vk/UOyOZWSPibI/AAAAAAAADUs/epGcGp14cF8/s1600/Merrilee.healing1.jpeg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aziae4IX0Vk/UOyOZWSPibI/AAAAAAAADUs/epGcGp14cF8/s1600/Merrilee.healing1.jpeg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aziae4IX0Vk/UOyOZWSPibI/AAAAAAAADUs/epGcGp14cF8/s1600/Merrilee.healing1.jpeg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aziae4IX0Vk/UOyOZWSPibI/AAAAAAAADUs/epGcGp14cF8/s1600/Merrilee.healing1.jpeg"></a></div> This surprised me. I thought I handled everything really well. And hey, I was alive and functioning and in pretty good spirits most of the time. <br> <br> But something was still “off.” I was still not right. I still thought about cancer every day. Not with fear or obsession. But it was just there—in my head—every day.<br> <br> As I prayed and pondered, I realized that I needed to heal on the inside.<br> <br> So this journey began. Discovering how to heal emotionally and spiritually was no easy task. Each of our journeys is so very personal and unique. It was virtually impossible to ask someone, “So . . . how did you heal on the inside?” I had to find my own way.<br> <br> I discovered something very interesting, something that I actually already knew. There is healing in light. &nbsp;I turned to the Light, my Savior, who had been my beacon of light the entire time. I turned to him in constant, deep prayer and in constant pondering. I read of Him and thought of Him. And of course, I learned that there is spiritual life in his light.<br> <br> His Living Water became even more important. I would ponder just one verse, holding it in my mind and my heart all day long. I would read a simple scripture story and learn of the suffering and triumph of others. I turned more deeply to his Word that watered my spirit. There is spiritual life in the Living Water.<br> <br> And I begged for his love. My life was so very different. But through it all, I just felt that if I could feel his love—intently—then I could cope with it all and I could and would be healed. &nbsp;There is spiritual life given with his love.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-dz_II5kfu2Y/UOyObqB4XaI/AAAAAAAADU0/GnwDaQum7rQ/s1600/Merrilee.healing2.jpeg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-dz_II5kfu2Y/UOyObqB4XaI/AAAAAAAADU0/GnwDaQum7rQ/s1600/Merrilee.healing2.jpeg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-dz_II5kfu2Y/UOyObqB4XaI/AAAAAAAADU0/GnwDaQum7rQ/s1600/Merrilee.healing2.jpeg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-dz_II5kfu2Y/UOyObqB4XaI/AAAAAAAADU0/GnwDaQum7rQ/s1600/Merrilee.healing2.jpeg"></a></div> It took about another year and a half. And one day I realized, that I was healed on the inside.<br> <br> I was on my prayer walk when I realized it—I hadn’t thought about cancer in over a week. I felt settled. I felt peaceful. I felt whole again.<br> <br> This is not to say that I don’t have my moments—we all do. But as I complete this one part of my journey, I realize that He has truly healed me.<br> <br> When I began this experience, I received a blessing that promised me that I would be completely healed. &nbsp;I had no idea that meant on the inside as well as on the outside. <br> <br> I have turned to light, water, and love. He offers that to each of us. He offers healing to each of us.&nbsp;I am living proof.<br> <div> <br></div> Timeline: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 2012 http://www.tofw.com/Timeline-Church-Jesus-Christ-Latter-day-Saints-2012-LDS-Living-Kate-Ensign-Lewis-Kaela-Worthen/s/752 http://www.tofw.com/Timeline-Church-Jesus-Christ-Latter-day-Saints-2012-LDS-Living-Kate-Ensign-Lewis-Kaela-Worthen/s/752 Fri, 04 Jan 2013 12:48:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living, Kate Ensign-Lewis and Kaela Worthen <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-BQ1XD1Syxlk/UOcxLMhp4sI/AAAAAAAADOA/YGKE8fb3OHA/s1600/2012.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-BQ1XD1Syxlk/UOcxLMhp4sI/AAAAAAAADOA/YGKE8fb3OHA/s1600/2012.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-BQ1XD1Syxlk/UOcxLMhp4sI/AAAAAAAADOA/YGKE8fb3OHA/s1600/2012.jpg" width="640" height="456" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-BQ1XD1Syxlk/UOcxLMhp4sI/AAAAAAAADOA/YGKE8fb3OHA/s1600/2012.jpg"></a></div> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"></span><br> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">2012 was a big year,&nbsp;the year of the "Mormon Moment." LDS Living takes a look back on the memorable events of 2012. You won't want to miss this amazing timeline!</span><br> <br> <em>Read about (and get top news coverage) on the big events of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its people in the year 2012. Scroll below graphic for coverage.</em><br> <br> See the timeline at <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/71283-timeline-the-church-of-jesus-christ-of-latter-day-saints-in-2012" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/71283-timeline-the-church-of-jesus-christ-of-latter-day-saints-in-2012">ldsliving.com</a>.<br> <br> Rearranging the Furniture http://www.tofw.com/Rearranging-Furniture-Anthony-Sweat/s/749 http://www.tofw.com/Rearranging-Furniture-Anthony-Sweat/s/749 Fri, 28 Dec 2012 12:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <br> <div class="Normal" style="margin-bottom: 0pt; margin-top: 0pt; text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 0pt; margin-top: 0pt; text-indent: 36pt;"> </div> <div class="Normal" style="margin-bottom: 0pt; margin-top: 0pt; text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 0pt; margin-top: 0pt; text-indent: 36pt;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UZUI7c3FvNo/UN3rJVCXc8I/AAAAAAAADKg/Akwjqm-JxqY/s1600/86501097.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UZUI7c3FvNo/UN3rJVCXc8I/AAAAAAAADKg/Akwjqm-JxqY/s1600/86501097.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UZUI7c3FvNo/UN3rJVCXc8I/AAAAAAAADKg/Akwjqm-JxqY/s1600/86501097.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UZUI7c3FvNo/UN3rJVCXc8I/AAAAAAAADKg/Akwjqm-JxqY/s1600/86501097.jpg" height="426" width="640"></a></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> The other day I taught my seminary class about Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Multitudes of people rushed to greet the Savior and excitedly welcome him into Jerusalem, cutting down palm branches and crying out, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” (Matthew 21:9).&nbsp; Here, finally, was their King, their Son of David to rule and reign and free them from Roman oppression. “He is so powerful!” they must have exclaimed. I can just imagine some of the conversations in the crowds: “Who is that?”</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> “That’s Jesus, the one who can multiply bread. We will never have to worry about food again!”</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> “The prophet from Nazareth heals all the sick. We are free from pain! He even brings the dead back to life! Nobody can stop him!”&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> “He can perceive the thoughts and intents of others. Our enemies stand no chance against us with him as our King!”&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Hosanna, indeed.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">Only, that wasn’t why Jesus came into Jerusalem.</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">He wasn’t that kind of Savior—to make life comfortable and stress-free and easy.</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">He wasn’t riding in to inherit the throne over the nation of Israel and to free the Jews from the Romans, nor to multiply bread or take away discomfort from Israel.</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">No, he was there to cause some discomfort to Israel.</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">The very first thing he did after riding into town on the back of a mild colt was to go over to the temple and un-mildly start wreaking havoc: overturning tables and chairs, sending the money changers scurrying, driving out those that made the temple into a “den of thieves” because it should have been a “house of prayer.” (Matthew 21:13).</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">&nbsp;</span><span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;">The very people who had welcomed him into the city just moments earlier may have been some of the very people he later chased out of the temple, and some bystanders might have suddenly started to question their excitement over this Jesus of Nazareth—a sort of buyer’s remorse for their throne of David.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="text-indent: 36pt;" _mce_style="text-indent: 36pt;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Sometimes, today, we are just like the ancient Jews who welcomed Jesus. We want him to come into our life and take away all that is wrong and to make everything right: Give us secure employment, a nice home, health, no fear, safety, freedom from sickness and pain. Make my life comfortable, like the Garden of Eden.&nbsp; Hosanna! However, Jesus isn’t that kind of a Savior.&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> He loves us too much to give us Eden, when he knows he can give us heaven.&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> &nbsp;&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> When we welcome Jesus into our life—really welcome him—he does to us just what he did in the temple:&nbsp; He starts overturning personal tables and chairs.&nbsp; He says to us, “This chair of unchastity needs to be gone.” “This pedestal of pride shouldn’t be here. Get rid of it.” “This table of temper needs to be overturned.” And he starts re-arranging our lives. He starts cleansing our temples. And sometimes it hurts. And sometimes it’s fearful. And sometimes, it upsets us. We say, “Jesus, I came to you so you can show me a life of sleekness!” and Jesus responds, “If men will come unto me I will show unto them their weakness” (Ether 12:27). <o:p></o:p></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> It has been my experience, and it is my testimony, that the moment we let Jesus into our hearts he will begin to re-arrange our lives. He will start to re-decorate our souls. Being changed by Jesus is a natural result of following Jesus. He will throw unholy things out, bring holy things in. He will expose our own personal “den of thieves,” cleanse us, and create a “house of prayer.” &nbsp;Ultimately, if we let him re-arrange our furniture, he will change us into a temple fit for the Holy Ghost. He will transform our very natures. He will truly heal us. I don’t find it coincidental that after Jesus cleansed the temple—after he caused the apparent chaos—the scriptural record says that “the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them” (Matthew 21:14; emphasis added). &nbsp;The same will be true for us. Hosanna, indeed.<o:p></o:p></div> <br> <br> An Experiment in Kindness http://www.tofw.com/Experiment-Kindness-LDS-Living-Susan-Wolf/s/747 http://www.tofw.com/Experiment-Kindness-LDS-Living-Susan-Wolf/s/747 Fri, 21 Dec 2012 14:39:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living, Susan Wolf <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4S-anqRjfgc/UNTWLJMb-FI/AAAAAAAADHg/dPwzKhwIf7c/s1600/kindness.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4S-anqRjfgc/UNTWLJMb-FI/AAAAAAAADHg/dPwzKhwIf7c/s1600/kindness.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4S-anqRjfgc/UNTWLJMb-FI/AAAAAAAADHg/dPwzKhwIf7c/s1600/kindness.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4S-anqRjfgc/UNTWLJMb-FI/AAAAAAAADHg/dPwzKhwIf7c/s1600/kindness.jpg" height="388" width="640"></a></div> <br> It's a busy time of year, that's for sure. But is there anything better we could do to truly remember the Savior? What if we thought of kindness, not as another plate of cookies to bake and deliver, but as a way of life? A way of doing the things we're already doing but with just a little more awareness and love. Can you imagine what might change?<br> <br> <i style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;">I've often thought it would be fun to conduct human behavioral experiments. So I decided to do it - and I found out just how far kindness can go in changing people's outlook.</i><br> <i style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;"><br></i> <i style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;">Read more at <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/5777-an-experiment-in-kindness" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/5777-an-experiment-in-kindness">ldsliving.com</a>.</i> Like Mary http://www.tofw.com/Mary-Sandra-Turley/s/746 http://www.tofw.com/Mary-Sandra-Turley/s/746 Wed, 19 Dec 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-78iRjbklYTY/UNDcBDHfoeI/AAAAAAAADDQ/Lso8D1SD2g0/s1600/56295392.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-78iRjbklYTY/UNDcBDHfoeI/AAAAAAAADDQ/Lso8D1SD2g0/s1600/56295392.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-78iRjbklYTY/UNDcBDHfoeI/AAAAAAAADDQ/Lso8D1SD2g0/s1600/56295392.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-78iRjbklYTY/UNDcBDHfoeI/AAAAAAAADDQ/Lso8D1SD2g0/s1600/56295392.jpg" height="640" width="598"></a></div> <br> Even as a young girl, I was drawn to mother Mary. She felt familiar to me. Hers was a magnificent calling. Only one woman was asked to be His mother for it took only one woman to birth Him and raise Him. Pondering Mary’s calling as a youth made me wonder what my calling was. Who was I to be? I wasn’t the mother of the Savior, but I too was a chosen daughter of God. &nbsp;I felt that at a young age – that I was God’s daughter. &nbsp;I felt that my Heavenly Father knew me, and that I too had something to ‘birth,’ to create, to offer to the world as my gift. &nbsp;I knew that my Heavenly Father knew my full ability and measure and needed me to listen, obey and fulfill all that He had planned for me, just as He depended on Mary to do so many years ago.<br> <br> In the middle of Luke chapter 2, at the pinnacle of Mary’s fulfillment of her divine calling, Mary is visited by the shepherds who had followed the star to meet the newly born king. The shepherds expounded to her the words that an angel had spoken. It must have been an overwhelming experience for Mary to hear the message from the shepherds, to know that their words came from an angel, understanding that the shepherds’ duty was to go about the land and share the good news of Christ’s birth. <br> <br> Luke 2:19 “<i>But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart</i>.” <br> <br> I understand that. It feels familiar to me. I understand witnessing spiritual and special things, and <i>keep</i>ing them and <i>ponder</i>ing them in my heart. I keep each experience tucked away in my heart to keep and ponder forever. In times of doubt, I recall these spiritual happenings and find peace. In times of triumph, I recall these spiritual happenings and find humility. <br> <br> Just like Mary, we are all handmaids of the Lord. He needs us to listen and follow His counsel and fulfill our full measure of life to bring His greatness and glory to the world around us – here – today! Mary’s calling was great. She followed faithfully. In the Lord’s eyes our callings are also profoundly important. We are all his children, none of us greater than the other, but all of us great in His eyes. <br> <br> A favorite Broadway song of mine is titled “Christmas Lullaby” by Jason Robert Brown. &nbsp;These lyrics capture my spirit every time I sing them:<br> <br> <i>In the eyes of heaven, my place is assured. &nbsp;</i><br> <i>I carry with me Heaven’s grand design. &nbsp;</i><br> <i>Gloria! Gloria! I will sing the name of the Lord,&nbsp;</i><br> <i>And He will make me shine!</i><br> <i><br></i> <i>And I will be like Mother Mary&nbsp;</i><br> <i>With the power in my veins,&nbsp;</i><br> <i>To believe in all the things I’ve yet to be.</i><br> <i>And I will be like Mother Mary</i><br> <i>And I’ll suffer any pains,</i><br> <i>For the future of the world inside of me.</i><br> <br> The future of the world is in all of us. God put us here, not only to learn and grow, but also to offer something to the world as our gift. Whatever our callings may be, let us follow them willingly as Mary did, and continue to witness the miraculous spiritual happenings around us and be sure to keep them and ponder them in our hearts.<br> <br> Scheduled Blessings http://www.tofw.com/Scheduled-Blessings-Emily-Freeman/s/743 http://www.tofw.com/Scheduled-Blessings-Emily-Freeman/s/743 Wed, 12 Dec 2012 14:47:00 -0700 <div> </div> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zYgerd6rXlk/UMjs86DoSOI/AAAAAAAAC7E/-3vLl_d1P3g/s1600/EFreeman.calendar2.jpeg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zYgerd6rXlk/UMjs86DoSOI/AAAAAAAAC7E/-3vLl_d1P3g/s1600/EFreeman.calendar2.jpeg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zYgerd6rXlk/UMjs86DoSOI/AAAAAAAAC7E/-3vLl_d1P3g/s1600/EFreeman.calendar2.jpeg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zYgerd6rXlk/UMjs86DoSOI/AAAAAAAAC7E/-3vLl_d1P3g/s1600/EFreeman.calendar2.jpeg" height="640" width="640"></a></div> <br> There are some things in your home people should never be allowed to see.<br> <br> Like that one drawer in your kitchen filled with pens and elastic bands and kids meal toys and batteries.<br> <br> Do you know the drawer I am talking about?<br> <br> Another thing that I don’t like people to see when they come into my home is my calendar. &nbsp;I should probably divulge the secret that I do not have a “smart” calendar. &nbsp;Mine still hangs from a hanger on the inside of my pantry door.<br> <br> It’s a disaster.<br> <br> It’s filled with one million scribbled notes of things that I can’t forget. &nbsp;Just looking at it makes me crazy…I can’t imagine what someone else would think if they looked at it.<br> <br> Each square contains a code, one word here, another word there…key words that are supposed to act as reminders of what is about to happen in my life.<br> <br> Usually they make sense to me.<br> <br> But one afternoon I went to a meeting and I had to bring my calendar. <br> <br> In the middle of the meeting I ended up having to lay the calendar out on the table in front of me.<br> <br> The date being considered was March 6.<br> <br> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hiZmJqgvr30/UMjs8Kv1qZI/AAAAAAAAC68/Uqj5as8-VeE/s1600/EFreeman.calendar.jpeg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hiZmJqgvr30/UMjs8Kv1qZI/AAAAAAAAC68/Uqj5as8-VeE/s1600/EFreeman.calendar.jpeg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hiZmJqgvr30/UMjs8Kv1qZI/AAAAAAAAC68/Uqj5as8-VeE/s1600/EFreeman.calendar.jpeg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hiZmJqgvr30/UMjs8Kv1qZI/AAAAAAAAC68/Uqj5as8-VeE/s1600/EFreeman.calendar.jpeg" height="320" width="320"></a><br> I had written one word there as a reminder…but for the life of me I could not remember what the reminder was for.<br> <br> The word was blessings.<br> <br> As I spoke with the person there about my availability on that date I told him, “I think I am good for that date, I have just one thing written there but I can’t remember what it’s for.”<br> <br> “What did you write?” &nbsp;He asked.<br> <br> “Blessings.” &nbsp;I replied.<br> <br> “Do you usually schedule blessings for yourself?” &nbsp;He asked incredulously.<br> <br> “No,” I laughed, “I&nbsp;didn't&nbsp;schedule blessings, it’s supposed to be a reminder of something I need to do on that day. &nbsp;It’s like a hint. &nbsp;I just can’t remember what it’s for.”<br> <br> “Well maybe you need blessings...” &nbsp;He suggested.<br> <br> Actually, we really were in need of blessings. <br> <br> Desperately in need.<br> <br> “…and maybe you scheduled some for yourself on that day.”<br> <br> “It’s a good idea.” I told him, &nbsp;“But I don’t schedule blessings for myself.”<br> <br> A few minutes later I remembered what it was. &nbsp;I had two baby blessings scheduled for that Sunday. &nbsp;Blessings.<br> <br> “I liked it better when you had scheduled blessings for yourself,” he said, “I need a calendar like that.”<br> <br> As I drove home I was reminded of one of my favorite stories of Emma Smith. <br> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tpwEWWLXHG8/UMj6iz4TD_I/AAAAAAAAC8U/axUQcMqpQNU/s1600/100843393.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tpwEWWLXHG8/UMj6iz4TD_I/AAAAAAAAC8U/axUQcMqpQNU/s1600/100843393.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tpwEWWLXHG8/UMj6iz4TD_I/AAAAAAAAC8U/axUQcMqpQNU/s1600/100843393.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tpwEWWLXHG8/UMj6iz4TD_I/AAAAAAAAC8U/axUQcMqpQNU/s1600/100843393.jpg" height="226" width="320"></a></div> Do you remember when the Prophet encouraged Emma to write out the best blessing she could think of and he would sign it on his return? &nbsp;A few days later the Prophet was martyred. <br> <br> I love to read through the blessing Emma wrote. &nbsp;Seeing what she desired most helps me to understand what a remarkable woman she was. &nbsp;Here are some of the blessings she asked for:<br> <br> <i>“First of all that I would crave as the richest of heaven’s blessings would be wisdom from my Heavenly Father bestowed daily, so that whatever I might do or say, I could not look back at the close of the day with regret, nor neglect the performance of any act that would bring a blessing.&nbsp;</i><br> <i><br></i> <i>"I particularly desire wisdom to bring up all the children that are, or may be committed to my charge, in such a manner that they will be useful ornaments in the Kingdom of God, and in a coming day arise up and call me blessed.</i><br> <i><br></i> <i>"I desire …that I may wear a cheerful countenance, live to perform all the work that I covenanted to perform in the spirit-world and be a blessing to all who may in any wise need aught at my hands.”</i><br> <br> Her requests, in and of themselves, inspire me to be better. &nbsp;She wanted wisdom from God that would allow her to perform acts that would bring blessings. &nbsp;She hoped that her children would call her blessed. &nbsp;She wanted to be a blessing to any who needed something from her hands.<br> <br> I can’t help but focus on the word blessings within her writing.<br> <br> The best blessings she could think of.<br> <br> Maybe you are in need of blessings at this time. &nbsp;Perhaps you could set aside a little time to write down the best blessings you can think of.<br> <br> What might some of those blessings be?<br> &nbsp;<br> As you write maybe you could remember one of my favorite promises from the Lord, “In blessing, I will bless thee…” &nbsp;(Genesis 22:17)<br> <br> <br> 2012 Time Out for Women and LDS Living Service Project Feeds 23,000 http://www.tofw.com/2012-Time-Out-Women-LDS-Living-Service-Project-Feeds-23000-LDS-Living-Erin-Jones/s/740 http://www.tofw.com/2012-Time-Out-Women-LDS-Living-Service-Project-Feeds-23000-LDS-Living-Erin-Jones/s/740 Fri, 07 Dec 2012 09:27:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living, Erin Jones <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> &nbsp;</div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FhpKZzCG0HM/UMIX-pIG6GI/AAAAAAAAC0Y/_aXk2y-y7rg/s1600/service.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FhpKZzCG0HM/UMIX-pIG6GI/AAAAAAAAC0Y/_aXk2y-y7rg/s1600/service.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FhpKZzCG0HM/UMIX-pIG6GI/AAAAAAAAC0Y/_aXk2y-y7rg/s1600/service.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FhpKZzCG0HM/UMIX-pIG6GI/AAAAAAAAC0Y/_aXk2y-y7rg/s1600/service.jpg"></a></div> 23,000 people fed. <br> That's right.<br> A big thanks to LDS Living for sponsoring our 2012 service project, and a HUGE thanks to YOU for making it happen, one city and one meal at a time. <br> <br> <br> <div> <em>Women who paired with Time Out for Women and <span class="caps">LDS</span> Living in 2012 made a significant difference to help the hungry.</em></div> <div> <em></em>&nbsp;</div> <div> <em>This year’s Time Out for Women service project, which was sponsored by <span class="caps">LDS</span> Living, encouraged participating women to bring specific food items to the conference that could be included in family meals. Over 4,000 women participated in the service project during the course of the 2012 “Seek the Good” tour, and even more women donated food to make complete meals for families of four.</em></div> <div> <em></em>&nbsp;</div> <div> Read more about the Good Meal Project <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/71093-2012-time-out-for-women-and-lds-living-service-project-feeds-23000" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/71093-2012-time-out-for-women-and-lds-living-service-project-feeds-23000">here</a>. </div> <div> <em></em>&nbsp;</div> <div> <em></em>&nbsp;</div> VIDEO: A Better Day Coming http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Better-Day-Coming-Chris-Williams/s/741 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Better-Day-Coming-Chris-Williams/s/741 Thu, 06 Dec 2012 10:49:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-wkLDbJMg5L8/UMJB36yMQBI/AAAAAAAAC20/Fc4Em4Mnrbo/s1600/hope2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-wkLDbJMg5L8/UMJB36yMQBI/AAAAAAAAC20/Fc4Em4Mnrbo/s1600/hope2.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-wkLDbJMg5L8/UMJB36yMQBI/AAAAAAAAC20/Fc4Em4Mnrbo/s1600/hope2.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-wkLDbJMg5L8/UMJB36yMQBI/AAAAAAAAC20/Fc4Em4Mnrbo/s1600/hope2.jpg"></a>TOFW presenter Chris Williams explains how his story, one most of us would see as a complete tragedy, is also a story of hope.</div> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/N2kNfDiJ0Xs" frameborder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/N2kNfDiJ0Xs" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><br> Knowing What to Keep http://www.tofw.com/Knowing-What-Keep-Wendy-Ulrich/s/736 http://www.tofw.com/Knowing-What-Keep-Wendy-Ulrich/s/736 Wed, 05 Dec 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-y9xzoDO5eoE/UL-8EZON41I/AAAAAAAACxk/aVv7Ha6nNvU/s1600/afghan.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-y9xzoDO5eoE/UL-8EZON41I/AAAAAAAACxk/aVv7Ha6nNvU/s1600/afghan.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-y9xzoDO5eoE/UL-8EZON41I/AAAAAAAACxk/aVv7Ha6nNvU/s1600/afghan.jpg" width="640" height="464" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-y9xzoDO5eoE/UL-8EZON41I/AAAAAAAACxk/aVv7Ha6nNvU/s1600/afghan.jpg"></a></div> <br> When I was little, my parents had a big afghan that my grandmother had made. Dyed with the dreary grays and deep blues of a cloudy sky at dusk, its heavy wool was scratchy against my skin – more so because I was allergic to wool. I knew my father would always keep it because it reminded him of his mother, from whom he’d moved far away, and because he valued things people made. I wonder how many times my mother refolded and replaced it on the back of the gray living room couch after someone finished a nap or a book or a chat by the fire.<br> <br>When my parents went to friends’ houses for dinner, the afghan came along. I would fall asleep while the grownups talked, and when it was time to go my father would wrap me up in it and carry me out to the car. Not wanting to be told I was too big to be carried, I endured the tangle of wool that turned my arms all red and hot, and I pretended not to wake up. I liked being carried. It felt good to know my parents had friends who liked them. It felt good to be taken along.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_Lz_i8vyAE8/UL-8ZjZZGSI/AAAAAAAACxs/qnd3EJY62qQ/s1600/dadicecream.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_Lz_i8vyAE8/UL-8ZjZZGSI/AAAAAAAACxs/qnd3EJY62qQ/s1600/dadicecream.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_Lz_i8vyAE8/UL-8ZjZZGSI/AAAAAAAACxs/qnd3EJY62qQ/s1600/dadicecream.jpg" width="320" height="320" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_Lz_i8vyAE8/UL-8ZjZZGSI/AAAAAAAACxs/qnd3EJY62qQ/s1600/dadicecream.jpg"></a>The world my parents wrapped around me then was warm and ultimately safe, and I felt woven into it by strong arms and soft words spoken when I was almost sleeping. But the wool they tried to plait into a life was often crude and hard, and the needles that fashioned it clashed as they worked. I struggled against the prickliness of that childhood – times my mother cried in her room, or my father raged, or my grandparents failed; the times I cried, or raged, or failed. Yet when I look back through the tangled yarn, I see light coming through the strands.</div> <br>Looking back, I feel blessed. It is not that I have forgotten the sadness. It is just that the small kindnesses matter more and more. I remember dad showing me a garter snake in the garden and taking me on dates for ice cream even when we really had little to say. I remember the effort he made to be home for my birthday, and the time he apologized. I remember the comforting sound of mom running the vacuum on Saturday mornings while I was still in bed, and the taste of her homemade fudge. I remember her making my Halloween costume, and tucking me in, and I remember her smile. Such small things. And in their smallness I gather hope. I can do small things, too.<br> <br>I found the afghan when I was cleaning out the house after my father’s death, and I brought it home with me. It was coming apart in long, gaping fissures that didn’t seem worth repairing: the wool was still rough and scratchy and the colors still dull. Nobody really wanted it. We can buy softer blankets at Walmart. Not knowing what else to do, I finally threw it away. But in my mind, if nowhere else, the warmth and the weaving endure – invested with the patient, stoic rhythm of soft hands working against the irritability of the yarn, heavy with my father's tenderness, and folded up in my mother's enduring strength.<br> Top Cleaning Tips http://www.tofw.com/Top-Cleaning-Tips-LDS-Living-Kaela-Worthen/s/734 http://www.tofw.com/Top-Cleaning-Tips-LDS-Living-Kaela-Worthen/s/734 Fri, 30 Nov 2012 00:02:00 -0700 <div> by LDS Living, Kaela Worthen <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Sm8NLWFdfrk/ULf2b4rW1SI/AAAAAAAACrU/zje_Q8iy2Hk/s1600/cleaning.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Sm8NLWFdfrk/ULf2b4rW1SI/AAAAAAAACrU/zje_Q8iy2Hk/s1600/cleaning.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Sm8NLWFdfrk/ULf2b4rW1SI/AAAAAAAACrU/zje_Q8iy2Hk/s1600/cleaning.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Sm8NLWFdfrk/ULf2b4rW1SI/AAAAAAAACrU/zje_Q8iy2Hk/s1600/cleaning.jpg" height="480" width="640"></a></div> <br> Anyone else wishing you were getting a maid for Christmas?<br> Since none of us probably are, here are some SMART cleaning tips from LDS Living. Any tips of your own you could share?<br> <br> <i style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;">The holidays mean house guests, and house guests mean you need a clean house – and that can be a lot of stress. Use some of these great cleaning tips to make the holidays go just a little smoother.</i><br> <i style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;"><br></i> <i style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;"><a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70930-lifestyle-top-cleaning-tips" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70930-lifestyle-top-cleaning-tips">Click here</a> to read more.</i> VIDEO: Jenny Oaks Baker's Silent Night http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Jenny-Oaks-Bakers-Silent-Night-Jenny-Oaks%20Baker/s/730 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Jenny-Oaks-Bakers-Silent-Night-Jenny-Oaks%20Baker/s/730 Mon, 26 Nov 2012 16:57:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UCNY_4BbLhY/ULQBNQ1LcqI/AAAAAAAACls/79yPqBLHBAE/s1600/noel.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UCNY_4BbLhY/ULQBNQ1LcqI/AAAAAAAACls/79yPqBLHBAE/s1600/noel.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UCNY_4BbLhY/ULQBNQ1LcqI/AAAAAAAACls/79yPqBLHBAE/s1600/noel.jpg" width="320" height="320" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UCNY_4BbLhY/ULQBNQ1LcqI/AAAAAAAACls/79yPqBLHBAE/s1600/noel.jpg"></a></div> It's that time of year to dust off the jingle bells and bring out the tree! Kick off your holiday season with this LOVELY new Jenny Oaks Baker music video. <br> <iframe height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/w6WrR96zyUM" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/w6WrR96zyUM" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><br> The Gratitude List http://www.tofw.com/Gratitude-List-Emily-Watts/s/729 http://www.tofw.com/Gratitude-List-Emily-Watts/s/729 Wed, 21 Nov 2012 12:19:00 -0700 <div> </div> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sf7l2fdVYdw/UK0oA8L7hHI/AAAAAAAACkY/M4KAtPjM4EQ/s1600/stk21300wcg.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sf7l2fdVYdw/UK0oA8L7hHI/AAAAAAAACkY/M4KAtPjM4EQ/s1600/stk21300wcg.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sf7l2fdVYdw/UK0oA8L7hHI/AAAAAAAACkY/M4KAtPjM4EQ/s1600/stk21300wcg.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sf7l2fdVYdw/UK0oA8L7hHI/AAAAAAAACkY/M4KAtPjM4EQ/s1600/stk21300wcg.jpg" height="640" width="634"></a></div> <br> ‘Tis the season for gratitude lists. Each November, as Thanksgiving approaches, my Facebook feed fills with them. I know parents who encourage their children to give thanks by posting butcher paper on the wall for them to draw on or a “gratitude tree” on the door with leaves that enumerate their blessings. A few kernels of corn beside their plates will serve as a reminder to many on Thanksgiving to stop and get specific about what they’re celebrating this year.<br> <br> I love these traditions. I love that there’s a whole holiday devoted to inviting us to stop and think for a minute about what really matters before we rush headlong into Noel bedlam. But it’s always a little hard for me to make a gratitude list.<br> <br> This is not because I lack blessings, heaven knows. I think maybe it’s because being thankful is something I feel really, really deeply about. Flippancy doesn’t really work here, and once I discard all the cutesy answers that might seem fun on Facebook, my list seems almost embarrassingly simple and repetitive. The things I’m most grateful for are the same ones that will invariably show up first on even the three-year-old’s section of the butcher paper. I’m grateful for the people I love. Ask me any day, and the answer will be the same. I’m grateful for my family, earthly and heavenly, every single day of my life. First and last. Every. Single. Day.<br> <br> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-P5KL4eq-DXg/UK0oRxSW1YI/AAAAAAAACkg/1ruT9SF0z5w/s1600/200280664-001.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-P5KL4eq-DXg/UK0oRxSW1YI/AAAAAAAACkg/1ruT9SF0z5w/s1600/200280664-001.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-P5KL4eq-DXg/UK0oRxSW1YI/AAAAAAAACkg/1ruT9SF0z5w/s1600/200280664-001.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-P5KL4eq-DXg/UK0oRxSW1YI/AAAAAAAACkg/1ruT9SF0z5w/s1600/200280664-001.jpg" height="213" width="320"></a>At a recent family reunion, we had a chance to hear memories of my great-grandfather voiced by his last remaining grandchildren, of whom there are ten (from an original fifty), ranging in age from a remarkably spry 79 to an unbelievably spry 99. A chapel full of descendants, representing only a small percentage of those eligible to be there, awoke in my heart an unbounded gratitude for the opportunity to belong to these good people in some way. And that uncovered a bright chain of blessings going clear back to the basic plan of salvation our Father laid out for us—that we were not merely His creations but His family, linked to each other in ways that transcend anything mortality can throw at us. The most powerful Being in the universe holds in His heart for each one of us the concern of a tender parent. Whether life is weighing me down or letting me fly on any particular day seems immaterial in the face of such a truth.<br> <br> So—yes. I’m thankful for Hershey’s Kisses in all of their holiday flavors and free layaway and Black Friday sales. I’m thankful for an extra day of fall sneaking in between what felt like winter, and for soup and sweaters and apples and fireplaces, but what I’m really thankful for isn’t going on a list because it’s just one item, lodged firmly in my heart, unchanging from day to day, year to year, and eternity to eternity. It’s the truth that I have a Father who has a plan for me. Everything else on the list is mine because of that.<br> <div> <br></div> VIDEO: True Beauty http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-True-Beauty-Carmen-Rasmusen%20Herbert/s/722 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-True-Beauty-Carmen-Rasmusen%20Herbert/s/722 Wed, 07 Nov 2012 14:35:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6u6sKMjitn0/UJrTbLzgbNI/AAAAAAAACYM/LDAlAcpfiqw/s1600/makeup.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6u6sKMjitn0/UJrTbLzgbNI/AAAAAAAACYM/LDAlAcpfiqw/s1600/makeup.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6u6sKMjitn0/UJrTbLzgbNI/AAAAAAAACYM/LDAlAcpfiqw/s1600/makeup.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6u6sKMjitn0/UJrTbLzgbNI/AAAAAAAACYM/LDAlAcpfiqw/s1600/makeup.jpg"></a></div> <span style="font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: medium;"><span style="line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;"><br></span></span> <span style="font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: medium;"><span style="line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;">Carmen Rasmusen, Time Out for Girls presenter and former American Idol contestant, takes off her make-up and talks about Hollywood's standard of beauty and why we should rethink it.&nbsp;</span></span><br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/RpZY5rnFNzo" frameborder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/RpZY5rnFNzo"></iframe> Beginning of Better Days Book Club Contest Winner! http://www.tofw.com/Beginning-Better-Days-Book-Club-Contest-Winner/s/719 http://www.tofw.com/Beginning-Better-Days-Book-Club-Contest-Winner/s/719 Wed, 07 Nov 2012 03:06:00 -0700 <div> </div> We are so excited to announce the WINNER of our <em>Beginning of Better Days</em> Book Club Contest! This group of ladies from Gilbert, AZ put together a magazine to share with us the three themes from the book, <em>The Beginning of Better Days, </em>that were most important to them. Below are a few excerpts from the AMAZING project they put together. Congratulations!<br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-nkghMo8BbW4/UJhPv_rhAZI/AAAAAAAACRA/Tca0MYAUVHs/s1600/gilbertgroup.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-nkghMo8BbW4/UJhPv_rhAZI/AAAAAAAACRA/Tca0MYAUVHs/s1600/gilbertgroup.jpg" imageanchor="1"></a><a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-nkghMo8BbW4/UJhPv_rhAZI/AAAAAAAACRA/Tca0MYAUVHs/s1600/gilbertgroup.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-nkghMo8BbW4/UJhPv_rhAZI/AAAAAAAACRA/Tca0MYAUVHs/s1600/gilbertgroup.jpg" imageanchor="1"></a><br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--Aah_Qs8yT4/UJrgZRlrfBI/AAAAAAAACZU/lJRI6B9N_aQ/s1600/pg1.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--Aah_Qs8yT4/UJrgZRlrfBI/AAAAAAAACZU/lJRI6B9N_aQ/s1600/pg1.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--Aah_Qs8yT4/UJrgZRlrfBI/AAAAAAAACZU/lJRI6B9N_aQ/s1600/pg1.jpg" width="492" height="640" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--Aah_Qs8yT4/UJrgZRlrfBI/AAAAAAAACZU/lJRI6B9N_aQ/s1600/pg1.jpg"></a></div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FLq9YOPKuVg/UJrga4HX2ZI/AAAAAAAACZc/d8HiP4tx3ko/s1600/editor%2527s+note.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FLq9YOPKuVg/UJrga4HX2ZI/AAAAAAAACZc/d8HiP4tx3ko/s1600/editor%2527s+note.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FLq9YOPKuVg/UJrga4HX2ZI/AAAAAAAACZc/d8HiP4tx3ko/s1600/editor%2527s+note.jpg" width="494" height="640" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FLq9YOPKuVg/UJrga4HX2ZI/AAAAAAAACZc/d8HiP4tx3ko/s1600/editor%2527s+note.jpg"></a></div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_Z9c8KrwhVM/UJrgeblD7mI/AAAAAAAACZk/Qq8HB-UytbM/s1600/kids.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_Z9c8KrwhVM/UJrgeblD7mI/AAAAAAAACZk/Qq8HB-UytbM/s1600/kids.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_Z9c8KrwhVM/UJrgeblD7mI/AAAAAAAACZk/Qq8HB-UytbM/s1600/kids.jpg" width="494" height="640" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_Z9c8KrwhVM/UJrgeblD7mI/AAAAAAAACZk/Qq8HB-UytbM/s1600/kids.jpg"></a></div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Y-9mJpkdHbc/UJrgf7-kGHI/AAAAAAAACZs/waLvb0t81dU/s1600/priesthood+in+the+home.png" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Y-9mJpkdHbc/UJrgf7-kGHI/AAAAAAAACZs/waLvb0t81dU/s1600/priesthood+in+the+home.png" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Y-9mJpkdHbc/UJrgf7-kGHI/AAAAAAAACZs/waLvb0t81dU/s1600/priesthood+in+the+home.png" width="494" height="640" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Y-9mJpkdHbc/UJrgf7-kGHI/AAAAAAAACZs/waLvb0t81dU/s1600/priesthood+in+the+home.png"></a></div> The Goodness in a Giggle http://www.tofw.com/Goodness-Giggle-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/717 http://www.tofw.com/Goodness-Giggle-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/717 Fri, 02 Nov 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Mvsj73vMSg0/UJL2u472WSI/AAAAAAAACNE/Ez6mgGT27HE/s1600/200313650-001.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Mvsj73vMSg0/UJL2u472WSI/AAAAAAAACNE/Ez6mgGT27HE/s1600/200313650-001.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Mvsj73vMSg0/UJL2u472WSI/AAAAAAAACNE/Ez6mgGT27HE/s1600/200313650-001.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Mvsj73vMSg0/UJL2u472WSI/AAAAAAAACNE/Ez6mgGT27HE/s1600/200313650-001.jpg" height="640" width="630"></a></div> <br> I love to laugh. I’m borrowing that line from Ed Wynn and Dick Van Dyke (Uncle Albert and Bert) in “Mary Poppins.” I can hear their laughter right this minute in my mind, and it makes me smile out loud. <br> <br> Laughter feels like a bridge, or glue, or an oasis, or magic. It can break down walls, melt hearts, turn a frowny face upside down, and create happiness. It really IS “the best medicine.” And it’s free! <br> <br> The kind of laughter I’m talking about is when something is genuinely funny, and people laugh together in a way that doesn’t hurt anybody and isn’t “loud laughter.” I think the distinction is not about volume (or noise level), but about quality. It’s the difference in why you’re laughing, and what you’re laughing at. It’s a difference you can feel. <br> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-FRC93dVpgaM/UJL2wTUOqHI/AAAAAAAACNI/rWgIrDYbdaU/s1600/200419464-001.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-FRC93dVpgaM/UJL2wTUOqHI/AAAAAAAACNI/rWgIrDYbdaU/s1600/200419464-001.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-FRC93dVpgaM/UJL2wTUOqHI/AAAAAAAACNI/rWgIrDYbdaU/s1600/200419464-001.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-FRC93dVpgaM/UJL2wTUOqHI/AAAAAAAACNI/rWgIrDYbdaU/s1600/200419464-001.jpg" height="213" width="320"></a></div> President Hinckley used to make us laugh hard and happily. One experience happened in the Tabernacle in the early 90’s (1990’s, not 1890’s, OK?). &nbsp;It was a Sunday morning and it was very, very WARM in the Tabernacle. &nbsp;Most of us were fanning ourselves with the programs which had been handed out before the Tabernacle Choir broadcast right before the Sunday morning session of General Conference. <br> <br> President Hinckley was conducting, and at some point he said something like, “We know it’s very warm in here, and that most of you are hot.” He had that twinkle in his eye that let you know something funny was on its way. &nbsp;“But you’re not as hot as you’re going to be if you don’t repent!” <br> <br> I don’t remember if those were his exact words, but the place erupted in happy laughter, and it felt and sounded so good! &nbsp;Good humor is such a gift. <br> <br> Some things aren’t funny at all. I know that. But there are times when laughter can be therapeutic, when it can make “all the difference.” As we learn from Ecclesiastes 3:4, there is “a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;”<br> <br> I learned this as a nurse. There were many times to weep, but there were also times to laugh. I found that humor and laughter often have a place in the healing process. (And, in keeping with nursing terms, laughter is infectious! … contagious!). <br> <br> Studies have shown (picture someone in a white lab coat saying this) that laughter has many health benefits – it actually causes physical changes in the body. Among these benefits are an increase in energy and a decrease in pain and the harmful effects of stress. And of course there are all those endorphins.<br> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-WUYDp8pe_ks/UJL2yvqTaLI/AAAAAAAACNM/LMAEJ6AVMwQ/s1600/82089009.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-WUYDp8pe_ks/UJL2yvqTaLI/AAAAAAAACNM/LMAEJ6AVMwQ/s1600/82089009.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-WUYDp8pe_ks/UJL2yvqTaLI/AAAAAAAACNM/LMAEJ6AVMwQ/s1600/82089009.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-WUYDp8pe_ks/UJL2yvqTaLI/AAAAAAAACNM/LMAEJ6AVMwQ/s1600/82089009.jpg" height="213" width="320"></a></div> Sharing laughter with others increases happiness and closeness. It can “break the ice” and strengthen relationships. Laughing with others is more powerful than laughing alone.<br> <br> Can you think of a time recently when you laughed “until you cried” with someone, and it felt so good? &nbsp;Maybe you shared a funny cartoon or story or joke or personal experience. <br> <br> In our family there are funny things which we can recall by saying just one word or phrase, and we all laugh.<br> “It’s either a skunk or a weasel!”<br> “Now I don’t know any of the details.” <br> “That’s my specialty.” <br> <br> Right now I’m laughing by myself – computers don’t have that capacity. <br> <br> I miss the fun I used to have with my parents, and the laughter we shared. Not long after my father passed away, I had to fly somewhere to give a talk. One of my younger sisters gave me a small box to take with me, asking me to be sure to bring it back to her. Inside she had put some of her favorite cartoons – a sweet way to cheer me up when it was mostly a time to weep. <br> <br> One thing I love about TOFW is the chance to weep and laugh with all of the wonderful presenters, and with all of you whom I’ve met during the years. Thank you! I hope we can laugh in Heaven. If not, I’m in big trouble! <br> <br> I hope today you’ll find time to laugh, and to share it with someone else. <br> <br> VIDEO: What Are YOU Waiting For? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-YOU-Waiting-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/715 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-YOU-Waiting-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/715 Thu, 01 Nov 2012 06:19:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BGAtpK4iczs/UJBC10IOYoI/AAAAAAAACKg/RMeevHBU-3Y/s1600/78321801.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BGAtpK4iczs/UJBC10IOYoI/AAAAAAAACKg/RMeevHBU-3Y/s1600/78321801.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BGAtpK4iczs/UJBC10IOYoI/AAAAAAAACKg/RMeevHBU-3Y/s1600/78321801.jpg" width="227" height="320" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BGAtpK4iczs/UJBC10IOYoI/AAAAAAAACKg/RMeevHBU-3Y/s1600/78321801.jpg"></a></div> TOFW presenter, Laurel Christensen, tells the story of what happens when you take 9 year-old boys to dinner and the quirky questions they ask.<br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/33oYX4cFt7I" frameBorder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/33oYX4cFt7I"></iframe> Salt Lake Live Stream! http://www.tofw.com/Salt-Lake-Live-Stream/s/713 http://www.tofw.com/Salt-Lake-Live-Stream/s/713 Thu, 25 Oct 2012 17:47:00 -0600 <div> </div> <meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html;charset=utf-8"> <meta name="generator" content="Adobe GoLive"> <title>Time Out for Women 2012 Tour</title> <div align="center"> <div align="center" style="width: 100%; height: 19px; background-color:#60605d; color: #000; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; padding-top: 3px;" _mce_style="width: 100%; height: 19px; background-color: #60605d; color: #000; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; padding-top: 3px;"><br></div> <table align="center" width="600" border="0" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" class="mceItemTable"> <tbody><tr> <td><a href="http://deseretbook.com/" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/" target="_blank"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/logo.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/logo.png" alt="Deseret Book" width="600" height="50" border="0" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></a></td> </tr> <tr> <td><a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/video_stream_info" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/video_stream_info" target="_blank"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/headerA.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/headerA.png" alt="TOFW" width="600" height="95" border="0" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></a></td> </tr> <tr> <td><a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/video_stream_info" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/video_stream_info" target="_blank"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/photos.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/photos.png" alt="photos" width="600" height="291" border="0" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></a></td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table align="center" width="600" border="0" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" class="mceItemTable"> <tbody><tr> <td colspan="2"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/subheadingA.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/subheadingA.png" width="600" height="100" alt="SLC" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></td> </tr> <tr> <td colspan="2" align="left" style="padding-bottom:20px; padding-top:10px; padding-left:30px; padding-right:30px; background-color:#FFF" _mce_style="padding-bottom: 20px; padding-top: 10px; padding-left: 30px; padding-right: 30px; background-color: #fff;"><span style="font-family:Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:14px; color:#666; line-height:20px" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; color: #666; line-height: 20px;">Remember the first time you attended TOFW? You felt empowered, uplifted, and energized. You left knowing yourself and feeling your purpose in the world just a little bit more clearly.<br> <br> We want EVERY WOMAN in EVERY CORNER OF THE WORLD to have that experience. We may not be able to physically take a TOFW event to everyone, but now, for the first time ever, we can share it with them virtually. And YOU CAN HELP!</span></td> </tr> <tr> <td rowspan="2"><a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/video_stream_info" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/video_stream_info" target="_blank"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/button.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/button.png" alt="Register" width="300" height="101" border="0" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></a></td> <td valign="top"><a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/event/214" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/event/214" target="_blank"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/click.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/click.png" alt="Click Here" width="300" height="58" border="0" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></a></td> </tr> <tr> <td><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/presenter_top.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/presenter_top.png" width="300" height="43" alt="Presenters" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></td> </tr> <tr> <td colspan="2"><a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/event/214" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/event/214" target="_blank"><img src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/presenter_bottom.png" _mce_src="http://deseretbook.com/misc/email/tofw/2012/LiveStream/Marketing/images/presenter_bottom.png" alt="Presenters" width="600" height="83" border="0" style="display:block" _mce_style="display: block;"></a></td> </tr> </tbody></table> <br><br><br><br> </div> <custom name="opencounter" type="tracking"> </custom> VIDEO: Mom's Homeland http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Moms-Homeland-Jericho-Road/s/710 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Moms-Homeland-Jericho-Road/s/710 Mon, 22 Oct 2012 17:03:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1je_CkgPAYo/UIXOzeZnVhI/AAAAAAAACBs/RrE9vE_JESI/s1600/Burgbernheim-Dave.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1je_CkgPAYo/UIXOzeZnVhI/AAAAAAAACBs/RrE9vE_JESI/s1600/Burgbernheim-Dave.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1je_CkgPAYo/UIXOzeZnVhI/AAAAAAAACBs/RrE9vE_JESI/s1600/Burgbernheim-Dave.jpg" width="320" height="240" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-1je_CkgPAYo/UIXOzeZnVhI/AAAAAAAACBs/RrE9vE_JESI/s1600/Burgbernheim-Dave.jpg"></a></div> Dave Kimball of Jericho Road talks about visiting a small town in Germany where his mother grew up and how the choices we make can ensure that-regardless of what may be happening on our lives-all is well.<br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/tE3kdSBkmMM" frameborder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/tE3kdSBkmMM" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe> Dave Says... http://www.tofw.com/Dave-Says-LDS-Living-Dave-Ramsay/s/708 http://www.tofw.com/Dave-Says-LDS-Living-Dave-Ramsay/s/708 Fri, 19 Oct 2012 00:50:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living, Dave Ramsay <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WqtUggWv0Ik/UH8naiuvU8I/AAAAAAAACAo/e1sOxrsbHpU/s1600/piggy2.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WqtUggWv0Ik/UH8naiuvU8I/AAAAAAAACAo/e1sOxrsbHpU/s1600/piggy2.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WqtUggWv0Ik/UH8naiuvU8I/AAAAAAAACAo/e1sOxrsbHpU/s640/piggy2.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WqtUggWv0Ik/UH8naiuvU8I/AAAAAAAACAo/e1sOxrsbHpU/s640/piggy2.jpg"></a></div> <br> Some people are known for giving great advice. Dave Ramsay is one of those people, and he happens to write a weekly post for LDS Living in a question and answer format! From student loan debt, to medical bills, to babies and down payments, Dave has some solid suggestions about financial peace. Here are a handful of his most recent posts. Be sure to check back with LDS Living to see Dave's&nbsp;latest tips!<br> <br> <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70516-dave-says-living-without-eating-out" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70516-dave-says-living-without-eating-out">Dave Says: Living Without Eating Out</a><br> <br> <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70517-dave-says-pay-off-debt-vs-down-payment" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70517-dave-says-pay-off-debt-vs-down-payment">Dave Says: Pay Off Debt vs. Down Payment</a><br> <br> <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70406-dave-says-first-the-baby-or-the-debt" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70406-dave-says-first-the-baby-or-the-debt">Dave Says: First the Baby, or the Debt?</a><br> <br> <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70404-dave-says-preparing-for-life-beyond-college" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/70404-dave-says-preparing-for-life-beyond-college">Dave Says: Preparing for Life Beyond College</a><br> <br> <br> Watching Over Your Heart http://www.tofw.com/Watching-Over-Your-Heart-Kris-Belcher/s/706 http://www.tofw.com/Watching-Over-Your-Heart-Kris-Belcher/s/706 Wed, 17 Oct 2012 10:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6hUq70n_ZMw/UH2zLBDrxdI/AAAAAAAAB80/YUCjMVvfPM0/s1600/drheart.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6hUq70n_ZMw/UH2zLBDrxdI/AAAAAAAAB80/YUCjMVvfPM0/s1600/drheart.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6hUq70n_ZMw/UH2zLBDrxdI/AAAAAAAAB80/YUCjMVvfPM0/s640/drheart.jpg" width="640" height="446" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6hUq70n_ZMw/UH2zLBDrxdI/AAAAAAAAB80/YUCjMVvfPM0/s640/drheart.jpg"></a></div> <br> I’m normally the one who jokes around and finds the humor during difficult situations.&nbsp;But recently I&nbsp;experienced a challenge in which I did very little laughing and a whole lot of weeping.&nbsp; I was hospitalized twice in one month with a systemic staph infection.&nbsp;The staph lodged itself in my backside which prevented me from moving much.&nbsp;Man, talk about pain in the bum!<br> <br> I was in constant and severe pain for weeks, and no medication sufficiently alleviated my agony.&nbsp; I hurt so badly for so long that I began to wonder if I’d ever heal.&nbsp;There were so many medical tests, so many doctors, and so much pain that I didn’t think I could handle one more second of it all. <br> <br> My prayers were a continual, “Please, please help me!”&nbsp; <br> <br> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-7zRFfUxHj3c/UH2zPxMktgI/AAAAAAAAB9E/z8hpEA_8pj8/s1600/iv.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-7zRFfUxHj3c/UH2zPxMktgI/AAAAAAAAB9E/z8hpEA_8pj8/s1600/iv.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-7zRFfUxHj3c/UH2zPxMktgI/AAAAAAAAB9E/z8hpEA_8pj8/s320/iv.jpg" width="212" height="320" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-7zRFfUxHj3c/UH2zPxMktgI/AAAAAAAAB9E/z8hpEA_8pj8/s320/iv.jpg"></a>One night, when I was in tremendous pain, I lay on my hospital bed and wept.&nbsp;I was sweating like I was running a marathon, and it was hard to breathe. When I pushed the nurse’s call button, no one came in my room to assist me and I pled with Father in Heaven for help.<br> <br> In walked James, my husband, who immediately got someone in to administer some pain medication.&nbsp;My prayer had been answered.<br> <br>But the trouble wasn’t over.&nbsp;When the nurse’s aid came in to take my vitals, I knew something was wrong. All of a sudden, the whole cardiac team was in my room. I had a gazillion leads placed on my chest and monitors displaying my heart activity.&nbsp;The crash cart was even there by my bed.&nbsp;I felt like I was in some TV medical drama.&nbsp;If I&nbsp;wasn't blind, I would have looked around for George Clooney.<br> <br>When the doctor came in, he informed me that while my heart rate was usually in the 90s, it was now at 240 and showed no signs of slowing.&nbsp;He was going to administer some medication that would slow down and possibly stop my heart so that they could restart it to pump at a normal level.<br> <br>Two nurses each held a syringe, ready to put into my IV.&nbsp;I truly wondered if I was going to die.&nbsp;If they stopped my heart, would it start again?<br> <br>Before giving the order to administer the medication, the doctor asked me to try a certain muscle contraction which can sometimes slow down the heart.&nbsp; I was able to follow his instructions, and my heart immediately slowed to a normal rate.&nbsp; There was an audible sigh of relief in my room from the whole medical team, but no one was as relieved as I was.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_ZH8UMgpBlQ/UH2zSnKjFMI/AAAAAAAAB9M/YheYp8zVllk/s1600/nurse.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_ZH8UMgpBlQ/UH2zSnKjFMI/AAAAAAAAB9M/YheYp8zVllk/s1600/nurse.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_ZH8UMgpBlQ/UH2zSnKjFMI/AAAAAAAAB9M/YheYp8zVllk/s320/nurse.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_ZH8UMgpBlQ/UH2zSnKjFMI/AAAAAAAAB9M/YheYp8zVllk/s320/nurse.jpg"></a>I was kept on monitors, and, at one point that evening, a nurse came in and introduced herself to me, saying, “I’ll be the one watching over your heart tonight.”</div> <br>I almost cried at her words.&nbsp;She was the one monitoring my heart activity, but the Spirit let me know who was really watching over my heart that night. And every night. Heavenly Father was completely aware of my condition and watching over me. <br> <br>Our circumstances are different.&nbsp;Our pains, trials, worries, sorrows, and other personal struggles may not be the same.&nbsp;But, there is one thing each of us can be assured of.&nbsp;You and I have a Father who loves and knows us personally.&nbsp;He knows how much we hurt.&nbsp;He knows our longings and hears our desperate prayers. He may not always deliver us from the pain and heartbreak, but he always helps us through it.&nbsp; <br> <br>When it feels like your heart is breaking, I invite you to turn to him again and again to feel the peace and love you need. There is no other source for lasting healing.&nbsp; VIDEO: What Suit Are YOU Wearing? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-Suit-YOU-Wearing-Sheri-Dew/s/705 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-Suit-YOU-Wearing-Sheri-Dew/s/705 Mon, 15 Oct 2012 16:11:00 -0600 <div> </div> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-T_5LoJgdZpU/UHyJLa4k4vI/AAAAAAAAB4c/7K4p9Ie-zTk/s1600/costume.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-T_5LoJgdZpU/UHyJLa4k4vI/AAAAAAAAB4c/7K4p9Ie-zTk/s1600/costume.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-T_5LoJgdZpU/UHyJLa4k4vI/AAAAAAAAB4c/7K4p9Ie-zTk/s1600/costume.jpg" width="214" height="320" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-T_5LoJgdZpU/UHyJLa4k4vI/AAAAAAAAB4c/7K4p9Ie-zTk/s1600/costume.jpg"></a><br> <br> <br> At a fireside for the BYU Spirit Squad, Sheri Dew made one request: to meet the men behind the Cosmo suit. What she learned surprised her. So we ask you, what suit are YOU wearing?<br> <br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/GyUb2SMEseA" frameBorder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/GyUb2SMEseA"></iframe> To Mormons: Why Relief Society Should Run for President http://www.tofw.com/Mormons-Why-Relief-Society-Should-Run-President-LDS-Living-Chrisy-Ross/s/701 http://www.tofw.com/Mormons-Why-Relief-Society-Should-Run-President-LDS-Living-Chrisy-Ross/s/701 Fri, 12 Oct 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living, Chrisy Ross <br /> </div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><i><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-M5Gt-db4oPI/UHb5nFfCAZI/AAAAAAAAB3c/wtx-b8d_6Bw/s1600/8556.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-M5Gt-db4oPI/UHb5nFfCAZI/AAAAAAAAB3c/wtx-b8d_6Bw/s1600/8556.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-M5Gt-db4oPI/UHb5nFfCAZI/AAAAAAAAB3c/wtx-b8d_6Bw/s1600/8556.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-M5Gt-db4oPI/UHb5nFfCAZI/AAAAAAAAB3c/wtx-b8d_6Bw/s1600/8556.jpg" height="388" width="640"></a></div> <div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><i><br></i></span></div> </i></span><i>As soon as we saw this, we knew we HAD to share it with you! As election season heats up, take a quick break to enjoy the thoughts of Chrisy Ross, a <span class="Apple-style-span" style="line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;">non-Mormon living among Mormons, as she explains why her write-in vote just might be the Relief Society.&nbsp;</span></i><div><span class="Apple-style-span" style="line-height: 18px;" _mce_style="line-height: 18px;"><i><br></i></span></div> <div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">We’ve yet to see a woman hold the office of president or vice president, and the possibility of witnessing that event in my lifetime is exciting. I’m fortunate to have grown up with examples of strong, intelligent, compassionate, productive women. As an adult, I have girlfriends in a variety of age groups who model tremendous character. And, over the years I’ve seen groups of women come together to accomplish what, to me, seems like the impossible.</span></div> <div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><br></span></div> <div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">So, this election year, I’m considering a write-in candidate: Relief Society.</span></div> <div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><br></span></div> <div> <span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">Read more <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/70344-to-mormons-why-relief-society-should-run-for-president" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/70344-to-mormons-why-relief-society-should-run-for-president">here</a>.</span></div> When GPS Doesn't Cut It http://www.tofw.com/When-GPS-Doesnt-Cut-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/687 http://www.tofw.com/When-GPS-Doesnt-Cut-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/687 Wed, 10 Oct 2012 13:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ueWeJnUu8bY/UGCeS-DvQNI/AAAAAAAABnc/nG4GGO1NEXw/s1600/englishcottage.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ueWeJnUu8bY/UGCeS-DvQNI/AAAAAAAABnc/nG4GGO1NEXw/s1600/englishcottage.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ueWeJnUu8bY/UGCeS-DvQNI/AAAAAAAABnc/nG4GGO1NEXw/s640/englishcottage.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ueWeJnUu8bY/UGCeS-DvQNI/AAAAAAAABnc/nG4GGO1NEXw/s640/englishcottage.jpg"></a></div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> &nbsp;</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> &nbsp;In April of 2012, my son and I drove 1900 miles all over England, Wales, Ireland, the Isle of Man, and Scotland, “searching,” as my son Daniel put it, “for dead people.”&nbsp;We were looking for the places where our ancestors were born, lived, worked, and died.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> <br> One of the highlights of our journey was finding where our great-great grandfather, Edward Ogden, and his wife, Sarah, met the missionaries and first heard their message. It was in the Angel Inn that the Ogdens owned and operated that the missionaries preached, and the light of the restored gospel flooded their inn and their souls.&nbsp; </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N5IYk2HqVbM/UGCefJtPVSI/AAAAAAAABnk/UB6wVpEklCI/s1600/ko1.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N5IYk2HqVbM/UGCefJtPVSI/AAAAAAAABnk/UB6wVpEklCI/s1600/ko1.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"></a><br></div> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N5IYk2HqVbM/UGCefJtPVSI/AAAAAAAABnk/UB6wVpEklCI/s1600/ko1.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N5IYk2HqVbM/UGCefJtPVSI/AAAAAAAABnk/UB6wVpEklCI/s1600/ko1.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N5IYk2HqVbM/UGCefJtPVSI/AAAAAAAABnk/UB6wVpEklCI/s320/ko1.jpg" width="320" height="240" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N5IYk2HqVbM/UGCefJtPVSI/AAAAAAAABnk/UB6wVpEklCI/s320/ko1.jpg"></a>Daniel and I located that very old building that is still standing in Mottram in Longdendale. We also visited the parish church in Mottram, called St. Michael and All Angels, and while taking photos we noticed the large sign in front of the old church. The poster declares, “God gives you better direction than Sat-Nav” (the British nickname for a GPS, from the name “Satellite Navigation”).&nbsp; <br> <br> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> What a clever and true statement!&nbsp; God does indeed give better direction than Sat-Nav. We children of God are wise to follow Heaven’s direction; we will do much better reaching our eternal destination if guided by, and constantly using, the divine system God has set up for us—a direction system that’s not merely global, but universal. Prayer, scriptures, prophets, principles, ordinances, service, and all other parts and systems of the gospel of Jesus Christ will guide us safely through the hazardous roads of life.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> It reminded me of a curious object in the middle of the Brigham Young University campus in Provo, Utah, USA that I noticed just last year.&nbsp; It is a sundial, and it features a very thought-provoking inscription carved into its side: “I GET MY LIGHT FROM GOD.”<br> &nbsp;</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-zyldcZK8SU8/UGCeg8vmrYI/AAAAAAAABns/f_GxKC2e9z8/s1600/ko2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-zyldcZK8SU8/UGCeg8vmrYI/AAAAAAAABns/f_GxKC2e9z8/s1600/ko2.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-zyldcZK8SU8/UGCeg8vmrYI/AAAAAAAABns/f_GxKC2e9z8/s320/ko2.jpg" width="320" height="239" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-zyldcZK8SU8/UGCeg8vmrYI/AAAAAAAABns/f_GxKC2e9z8/s320/ko2.jpg"></a>In an increasingly dark world, where the prince of darkness seems to be succeeding in winning over more and more souls to the “dark side”—causing others to follow his example of corrupting, distorting, or simply ignoring the light and truth that Heaven emanates, we must do as the sundial does, and “get our light from God.” Our Heavenly Father, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are constantly broadcasting light throughout the universe. There is so much light available to us, shining through the darkness, but we have to seek it. To live forever in such brilliant light as They do, we must constantly absorb all we can, our light growing brighter and brighter until the perfect day. Our light—God’s light—will help dispel the darkness around us, and help rescue others from the thick mists of darkness that obscure our vision of eternity.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> <br> &nbsp;So God tells us, “I will give you better direction than Sat-Nav, or GPS,” and each of us in turn can accept Heaven’s guidance by living by the slogan, “I get my light from God.” His direction is light.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> <br></div> Elevate Your Life http://www.tofw.com/Elevate-Your-Life-Chrislyn-Woolston/s/693 http://www.tofw.com/Elevate-Your-Life-Chrislyn-Woolston/s/693 Thu, 04 Oct 2012 11:12:00 -0600 <div> by Chrislyn Woolston <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://tofw.com/images/2013_TOFW_schedule.pdf" _mce_href="../../../images/2013_TOFW_schedule.pdf"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PRjXc3o8Lr4/UG3OQvhzg_I/AAAAAAAABw8/pB64FmsBhZ0/s640/2013+TOFW+logo_Hero.jpg" width="640" height="448" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PRjXc3o8Lr4/UG3OQvhzg_I/AAAAAAAABw8/pB64FmsBhZ0/s640/2013+TOFW+logo_Hero.jpg"></a></div> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> During the last year, as I’ve settled into my new role as director of Time Out for Women, I’ve figured out many things and mastered a few. I’ve learned how to pack a suitcase in under five minutes while preparing my sweet two-year-old and husband for their fun weekend without the Mom. I’ve discovered that I am a genius at putting on the right amount of makeup so I’m not shiny from the stage. And I’ve learned how to tell anyone on an airplane about Time Out for Women in less than a minute—or at least I thought I had that one in the bag until my flight to Texas. . . .</div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <br></div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sg6pvAQ29vU/UG4R3nvf-WI/AAAAAAAAByQ/gUyVppu3Yzs/s1600/c1026tofwvegasbooth_001+%25281%2529.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sg6pvAQ29vU/UG4R3nvf-WI/AAAAAAAAByQ/gUyVppu3Yzs/s1600/c1026tofwvegasbooth_001+%25281%2529.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sg6pvAQ29vU/UG4R3nvf-WI/AAAAAAAAByQ/gUyVppu3Yzs/s320/c1026tofwvegasbooth_001+%25281%2529.jpg" width="320" height="320" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Sg6pvAQ29vU/UG4R3nvf-WI/AAAAAAAAByQ/gUyVppu3Yzs/s320/c1026tofwvegasbooth_001+%25281%2529.jpg"></a>That was when I sat next to a man who asked the question: What is Time Out for Women, really? It was that really that threw me. I looked at him and found myself at a loss for words. Somehow, my elevator speech, carefully developed over the years, couldn’t quite capture the real essence of TOFW. Sure, we are a room full of 2500 good . . . no, great women. We come from around the world to share an inspirational weekend and take a unique “time out” from our busy lives. We have fun with our friends, mothers, and sisters, and we laugh, cry, and bond. But is this what TOFW really is?</div> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> I left that flight thinking about all of the faithful women who were about to fill those seats in Texas that weekend. I realized that in order to describe TOFW really, we have to describe the women of TOFW.</div> <br> We know you because we are you. We know you’re one in a million and yet you’re part of the millions. We know you dream big and feel deeply and serve with all your heart. We know you love God. We know that the TOFW experience is not unique just because of what we have to offer from the stage. It is unique because of you. We also know that you don’t need TOFW to do the things you’re already doing.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cNaZf-BmG-4/UG4SAYFnq_I/AAAAAAAAByg/WGJDZvyYfys/s1600/c1026tofwvegasbooth_148.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cNaZf-BmG-4/UG4SAYFnq_I/AAAAAAAAByg/WGJDZvyYfys/s1600/c1026tofwvegasbooth_148.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cNaZf-BmG-4/UG4SAYFnq_I/AAAAAAAAByg/WGJDZvyYfys/s320/c1026tofwvegasbooth_148.jpg" width="320" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cNaZf-BmG-4/UG4SAYFnq_I/AAAAAAAAByg/WGJDZvyYfys/s320/c1026tofwvegasbooth_148.jpg"></a>But maybe, just like us, you find strength in music, humor, service, and thoughtful gospel insights that elevate your spirit and recharge your soul and send you back into the world a better woman. And that’s when the 2013 theme “HIGHER” came to us. When the Lord says in Isaiah 55:9, “So are my ways higher than your ways,” He’s not chastising us for not being more. He’s inviting us to move beyond what we have known and to join Him in a higher life.</div> <br> It’s a plea to the woman who needs to rediscover herself and THINK HIGHER about her life, her role as a woman of God, and her future. It’s an invitation to all of us to BELIEVE HIGHER as we face the challenges that will require all of our faith and all of our hearts. It’s an injunction to those of us choosing every day between good, better, and best to LIVE HIGHER and make God’s ways our own.<br> <br> And that is what Time Out for Women is, <em>really</em>.<br> <br> It’s YOU… Higher.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-NcOiT3hsH-o/UL49opE7VPI/AAAAAAAACts/-VcARsftPBg/s1600/TOFWHigher_Pinterest%5B1%5D.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-NcOiT3hsH-o/UL49opE7VPI/AAAAAAAACts/-VcARsftPBg/s1600/TOFWHigher_Pinterest%5B1%5D.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-NcOiT3hsH-o/UL49opE7VPI/AAAAAAAACts/-VcARsftPBg/s1600/TOFWHigher_Pinterest%5B1%5D.jpg" width="256" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-NcOiT3hsH-o/UL49opE7VPI/AAAAAAAACts/-VcARsftPBg/s1600/TOFWHigher_Pinterest%5B1%5D.jpg"></a></div> <br> <br> We can’t wait to experience Time Out for Women with you in 2013 as we embark on this Higher adventure together! And I promise, I won’t be at a loss for words again.<br> <br> <em>Really.</em><br> <br> Chrislyn Woolston<br> <br> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://tofw.com/events" _mce_href="../../../events"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-yBXtPa-HggQ/UG3Q-EioTGI/AAAAAAAABxM/Hf8l38LhZdA/s1600/tofw_button.png" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-yBXtPa-HggQ/UG3Q-EioTGI/AAAAAAAABxM/Hf8l38LhZdA/s1600/tofw_button.png"></a></div> <div align="center"> </div> <div align="center"> </div> <div align="center"> </div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z1Gyr-4JNbg/UG3Pc1TXgwI/AAAAAAAABxE/aBzLtITOzIE/s1600/c1024+tofw+houston_004.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z1Gyr-4JNbg/UG3Pc1TXgwI/AAAAAAAABxE/aBzLtITOzIE/s1600/c1024+tofw+houston_004.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z1Gyr-4JNbg/UG3Pc1TXgwI/AAAAAAAABxE/aBzLtITOzIE/s200/c1024+tofw+houston_004.jpg" width="147" height="200" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Z1Gyr-4JNbg/UG3Pc1TXgwI/AAAAAAAABxE/aBzLtITOzIE/s200/c1024+tofw+houston_004.jpg"></a></div> Chrislyn Woolston has been the proud mom to Emma since July 2010 and the enthusiastic Director of Time Out for Women since August 2011.&nbsp; She loves traveling, organizing a party and will do anything for pumpkin bread.&nbsp; She's an avid BYU fan and her husband is decidedly a UTE. The rivalry in their home keeps things alive and fun. <br> <br> VIDEO: 25 Women and 1 Tube of Toothpaste http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-25-Women-1-Tube-Toothpaste-Mariama-Kallon/s/692 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-25-Women-1-Tube-Toothpaste-Mariama-Kallon/s/692 Mon, 01 Oct 2012 10:49:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"></a><br></div> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s320/toothpaste.jpg" width="320" height="319" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s320/toothpaste.jpg"><br> <br> </a><br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"></a><br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"></a><br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-M75V0VUYhCg/UGnIpncNX5I/AAAAAAAABsU/MQBDR73X9DY/s1600/toothpaste.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><div align="left"> </div> </a><br> <span style="font: 13px/18px arial, sans-serif; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-transform: none; text-indent: 0px; letter-spacing: normal; word-spacing: 0px; float: none; display: inline !important; white-space: normal; orphans: 2; widows: 2; font-size-adjust: none; font-stretch: normal; background-color: rgb(235, 235, 235); -webkit-text-size-adjust: auto; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px;" _mce_style="background-color: #ebebeb; color: #333333; display: inline !important; float: none; font-size-adjust: none; font-stretch: normal; font: 13px/18px arial, sans-serif; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: 2; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 2; word-spacing: 0px;"><span style="background-color: white;" _mce_style="background-color: white;">Sometimes seeking the good is as simple as being grateful for shoes and toothpaste. Name one good thing, big or small, in your life right now.</span></span><iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/WK5ZxZTQI3I" frameBorder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/WK5ZxZTQI3I"></iframe> VIDEO: Twenty Rejection Letters and a Bestseller http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Twenty-Rejection-Letters-Bestseller-Jason-Wright/s/688 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Twenty-Rejection-Letters-Bestseller-Jason-Wright/s/688 Mon, 24 Sep 2012 13:15:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2x_lF6jJ7VY/UGCxomB6ypI/AAAAAAAABoo/a9xr6uwRWM8/s1600/failure.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2x_lF6jJ7VY/UGCxomB6ypI/AAAAAAAABoo/a9xr6uwRWM8/s1600/failure.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2x_lF6jJ7VY/UGCxomB6ypI/AAAAAAAABoo/a9xr6uwRWM8/s320/failure.jpg" width="227" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2x_lF6jJ7VY/UGCxomB6ypI/AAAAAAAABoo/a9xr6uwRWM8/s320/failure.jpg"></a></div> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Think back on the moments in your life that you might consider failures. What good came of those moments? What lessons did you learn? How did they change you?</span><br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1c_J0B1n2VI" frameBorder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1c_J0B1n2VI"></iframe><br> Chasing A Better Dream http://www.tofw.com/Chasing-Better-Dream-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/685 http://www.tofw.com/Chasing-Better-Dream-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/685 Tue, 18 Sep 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DO275ZaEw6E/UFjWBmkiIXI/AAAAAAAABkw/J0wPwvAF6YQ/s1600/FR3.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DO275ZaEw6E/UFjWBmkiIXI/AAAAAAAABkw/J0wPwvAF6YQ/s1600/FR3.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="480" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DO275ZaEw6E/UFjWBmkiIXI/AAAAAAAABkw/J0wPwvAF6YQ/s640/FR3.JPG" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DO275ZaEw6E/UFjWBmkiIXI/AAAAAAAABkw/J0wPwvAF6YQ/s640/FR3.JPG" width="640"></a></div> <br> It was after the TOFW event in Phoenix last year. I had just given my “The Faith Experiment” talk and was in such a good place.<br> <br> I was approaching my year mark of the beginning of my “choose to become” journey and working to turn my life into exactly what I thought I had always wanted. I was chasing a dream.<br> <br> Someone at the event had put a little note in my scriptures. It didn’t say anything to me personally. It wasn’t signed. All it had was this anonymous quote: <br> <br> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; “Sometimes on your way to a dream, you get lost and find a better one.” –Unknown<br> <br> I thought it was a sweet quote but I couldn’t imagine finding a better dream than the one I was living at the time. <br> <br> But, that’s exactly what happened.<br> <br> Sometimes, in the midst of chasing what we thought we always wanted, we take a little turn on our journey (or rather, the journey takes a little turn on us) and we DO find something better. And, the truth is, we would have never found the “new dream” if we hadn’t been willing to try the “first dream”.<br> <br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3oK5g87ItE/UFjkDsKIgWI/AAAAAAAABl0/-KE7tLBIcvk/s1600/me+6.5.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3oK5g87ItE/UFjkDsKIgWI/AAAAAAAABl0/-KE7tLBIcvk/s1600/me+6.5.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3oK5g87ItE/UFjkDsKIgWI/AAAAAAAABl0/-KE7tLBIcvk/s1600/me+6.5.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3oK5g87ItE/UFjkDsKIgWI/AAAAAAAABl0/-KE7tLBIcvk/s1600/me+6.5.jpg"></a></div> I’ve learned a few important things in this journey of chasing a dream: <br> <br> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 1.)&nbsp;Dreams are big. That’s what makes them dreams.<br> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 2.)&nbsp;Part of finding a “new dream” is being okay with the bumps and failures along the way<br> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; of chasing your original dream.<br> <br> Can I be personal for a minute?<br> <br> Some of you know I’ve been on a weight loss journey for the past 18 months.&nbsp; Earlier this summer, I had to acknowledge I wasn’t where I was “supposed” to be and honestly, I had been carrying a bit of shame about that for the last year. So, one week this past July, I returned to Fitness Ridge in St. George, UT (the place the journey had begun for me).<br> <br> I walked in and the trainer who changed my life last time was there waiting for me.<br> It was so good to see her and she was proud of how far I had come.<br> And was ready for me Monday afternoon in a personal training session I set up.<br> <br> "So, tell me where your head is at?" she asked.<br> And I couldn't contain the tears.<br> <br> The stirrings had started the night before and I had felt them all morning...on the hike...during the workout. I didn't know how to articulate what I was experiencing...until I started talking.<br> <br> "When I was here last time, I was afraid of all the things I knew I couldn't do...but now...I think I'm afraid of <em>all the things I know I can</em>."<br> <br> I don't know how to explain it and I don't expect it to make any sense but I knew that the life that I've known, even the "new one" of the previous 18 months, was comfortable and "good enough". It's a world I have understood and felt safe in. It's a world that didn't really need to change anymore.<br> <br> Except that I still wanted it to change.&nbsp; <br> <br> I had a “new dream” for my life and I wanted to find it. <br> <br> And I found it during a hike that week. It’s called “Stop Sign” and it starts at the base of Snow Canyon and goes all the way to the top. It’s 4+ miles all up hill (the last part being dramatically uphill). <br> <br> I thought about all that had led me to that place and all that I had done in the previous 18 months.<br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> I realized that I had been so caught up in my original "goal date" and so wrapped in the shame of not hitting it, that I had never really celebrated all that I had accomplished.<br> I felt sad about that. And thought of all that I HAD accomplished on this “dream journey”. I focused on all the good. <br> <br> As I was approaching the last stretch, I looked down at my watch and realized that if I could make it to the top in 2 minutes, I would shave FORTY MINUTES off my time from 18 months prior.<br> FORTY MINUTES.<br> And since I turned 40 this year, that seemed most appropriate. <br> <br> In that very moment, Hilary Weeks’ "Past the Point" came on my iPod.<br> Oh, the timing of hearing that song of all songs!<br> And so I booked it.<br> I actually started running.<br> After walking an incline for 4+ miles,<br> After being seriously exhausted reflecting on the last 18 months.<br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2SdA47V9XGY/UFjWCI8GhHI/AAAAAAAABk4/ByUYwIFwZ7Y/s1600/FR6.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2SdA47V9XGY/UFjWCI8GhHI/AAAAAAAABk4/ByUYwIFwZ7Y/s1600/FR6.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" height="320" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2SdA47V9XGY/UFjWCI8GhHI/AAAAAAAABk4/ByUYwIFwZ7Y/s320/FR6.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2SdA47V9XGY/UFjWCI8GhHI/AAAAAAAABk4/ByUYwIFwZ7Y/s320/FR6.JPG" width="240"></a></div> After seriously considering the 6 months that lie ahead of me.<br> <br> I ran right up to that stop sign with not a second to spare, without anyone seeing or being there to applaud.<br> It was just me.<br> I made my goal.<br> Forty minutes faster than 18 months prior. <br> And I cried like a baby.<br> The wailing kind of crying.<br> I had spent the last 18 months doing all the things I knew I couldn't do.<br> I hadn't been perfect but I have kept at it.<br> I had believed.<br> I had become an optimist.<br> I had asked for bread when I had previously been content with stones.<br> I had learned to trust and learned to love.<br> It's been a remarkably sweet and significant and sacred journey.<br> <br> And, that morning, as I reached the top, reflecting on the past was only for a moment because in the moment I touched the sign, I realized the most important thing...<br> <br> When you embark on a journey chasing a dream, there is a risk in believing there is some monumental “finish line”—as if you’ll arrive at a place and the journey will be over. But, the truth is, there is always a dream to chase. There is always the hope that things can be even better than they are. <br> <br> Do you have a dream for your life?<br> <br> Do you feel like you’ve failed at an attempt to chase something you’ve always wanted?<br> <br> As cliché as it sounds, the experience, the becoming, the dreaming…it really all exists in the journey of the dream, not in the destination of arriving at it. <br> <br> In many ways, there is no “finish line” when you’re chasing a dream. There are simply a series of starts and stops…a path filled with places where you can turn corners and make adjustments.&nbsp; The key is to BELIEVE you can have the life you were meant to live and then have the COURAGE to live it.<br> <br> Dreaming something more for your life might not be clean and perfect or follow the timeline you have in your head; but keep going. Keep chasing your dream. Because it really is true...”Sometimes on your way to a dream, you get lost and find a better one.”<br> <br> And who doesn’t want something better? Different but the Same http://www.tofw.com/Different-Same-Sandra-Turley/s/680 http://www.tofw.com/Different-Same-Sandra-Turley/s/680 Wed, 12 Sep 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XUmVeDxR2WI/UE5UCNDxGyI/AAAAAAAABbA/RrAo0CS14Ss/s1600/buttons.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XUmVeDxR2WI/UE5UCNDxGyI/AAAAAAAABbA/RrAo0CS14Ss/s1600/buttons.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XUmVeDxR2WI/UE5UCNDxGyI/AAAAAAAABbA/RrAo0CS14Ss/s640/buttons.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XUmVeDxR2WI/UE5UCNDxGyI/AAAAAAAABbA/RrAo0CS14Ss/s640/buttons.jpg"></a></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> &nbsp;</div><p> On a trip to Utah last fall, I made a quick stop into Café Rio.&nbsp;Until recently, we did not have Café Rio on the east coast, so taking a trip to Utah not only meant mountains, Temple Square, and ultra-nice people everywhere, but it also meant at least one delicious pilgrimage to dive my face into a gorgeous, heaping bowl of cilantro-ranch-dressing smothered pork salad.&nbsp;Mm-mmm.</p><p>But I digress.&nbsp; </p><p>I walked into Café Rio.&nbsp;I stood in a long lunch hour line.&nbsp;A girl about my age was in front of me.&nbsp;She had straight blonde hair like mine.&nbsp;Skinny jeans and knee high brown boots like mine.&nbsp;A cute handbag like mine.&nbsp;She began to place her order: “A pork salad please….with shredded lettuce….everything but guacamole…to go…just water...thank you.”&nbsp;Then it was my turn:&nbsp;“A pork salad please…with shredded lettuce…everything but guacamole…to go…just water…thank you.”&nbsp; </p><div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-H7cyeHIC7VY/UE5UIgrXF_I/AAAAAAAABbI/SnTLLbtQFAE/s1600/Different+but+the+Same+1+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-H7cyeHIC7VY/UE5UIgrXF_I/AAAAAAAABbI/SnTLLbtQFAE/s1600/Different+but+the+Same+1+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-H7cyeHIC7VY/UE5UIgrXF_I/AAAAAAAABbI/SnTLLbtQFAE/s320/Different+but+the+Same+1+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-H7cyeHIC7VY/UE5UIgrXF_I/AAAAAAAABbI/SnTLLbtQFAE/s320/Different+but+the+Same+1+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg"></a>No, I was not copying her – that is my same order every single time, as it probably is hers. I just had to laugh.&nbsp;Usually I have a solid strong sense of individual worth, but in that moment in line at Café Rio, I felt like nothing more than a carbon copy of every other knee high boot wearing blonde girl in Utah Valley. </div> <br> You see, I have this little problem. I LOVE being different.&nbsp;My sense of individual worth was founded on the basic truth that I was individually different from nearly everyone around me in my youth.&nbsp;I have lived the majority of my life on the east coast.&nbsp;My religion has made me a minority in almost all of my social dealings.&nbsp;In high school, I was one of a small handful of LDS students.&nbsp; At work I was usually the only member.&nbsp;In our community, my family was one of few Mormon families with which anyone had come in contact.&nbsp;To some, this may sound hard, but to others, it sounds perfect.&nbsp;For my spirit, it was the perfect atmosphere for me to truly learn and accept the gospel that had been taught to me by my parents.&nbsp;In those pivotal teenage years when we must start to stand for what we believe, I found strength in standing alone.&nbsp;My testimony grew because it was mine and it was unique from all of my peers.<br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-F_kUkmmfRhw/UE5UNAX5bdI/AAAAAAAABbQ/7_a1gCMjpZo/s1600/different+but+the+same+3+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-F_kUkmmfRhw/UE5UNAX5bdI/AAAAAAAABbQ/7_a1gCMjpZo/s1600/different+but+the+same+3+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-F_kUkmmfRhw/UE5UNAX5bdI/AAAAAAAABbQ/7_a1gCMjpZo/s320/different+but+the+same+3+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-F_kUkmmfRhw/UE5UNAX5bdI/AAAAAAAABbQ/7_a1gCMjpZo/s320/different+but+the+same+3+%2528Sandra+Turley%2529.jpg"></a>At 17, when I moved to Utah to attend BYU, my testimony was actually shaken rather than strengthened.&nbsp;It was like my Café Rio experience times a ka-trillion.&nbsp;Everywhere I turned there was a girl that looked like me, dressed like me, sang like me, believed like me, prayed like me, had the same countenance as me.&nbsp;So I doubted.&nbsp;How could I feel special and individual if everyone else was special and individual just like me?&nbsp; </div> <br> I have pondered this question and I have studied and learned an essential truth. Individual worth is measured by our Creator, not by our peers.&nbsp;Heavenly Father knows our worth, and He knows what makes us different from all of His other children.&nbsp;He is delighted that we are different.&nbsp;But He is also delighted that we are the same.&nbsp;We were all created in His image. If we choose to follow Him, we will all be like Him.&nbsp;We will believe like Him, look like him, have a countenance like Him.&nbsp;When I look at it from His point of view, I am not bothered.&nbsp;Instead, I am honored that I look and feel and think and pray like so many other women in the world. I am honored that there are so many of us all over the world that claim our testimonies of Jesus Christ as the similarity that ties us together.&nbsp; <br> <br> Whether we look the same on the outside or not, we feel the same as we speak of Christ.&nbsp;This must make our Heavenly Father so profoundly pleased with us, His children.&nbsp;And though I LOVE being different, I have now found that I also LOVE being the same. <br> <br> Getting "Real" About Parenting http://www.tofw.com/Getting-Real-Parenting-Chris-Williams/s/671 http://www.tofw.com/Getting-Real-Parenting-Chris-Williams/s/671 Wed, 05 Sep 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jVX5kBVmIQo/UEZcVljvpXI/AAAAAAAABUU/69SfokFGMEY/s1600/Chris+Williams.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jVX5kBVmIQo/UEZcVljvpXI/AAAAAAAABUU/69SfokFGMEY/s1600/Chris+Williams.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jVX5kBVmIQo/UEZcVljvpXI/AAAAAAAABUU/69SfokFGMEY/s640/Chris+Williams.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jVX5kBVmIQo/UEZcVljvpXI/AAAAAAAABUU/69SfokFGMEY/s640/Chris+Williams.jpg"></a></div><p> <br> “You’re not my real Dad!”<br> <br> Those were the words I feared most.<br> <br> &nbsp;As a recent widower with two sons, who was considering marrying a widow named Mikkel with two children of her own, I wondered if I was up to all the potential challenges of blending two families together. Her daughter Arli was just two years old, and Parker was only four, and I was told that they would probably think of me as their dad from day one. But I had a six year old son and a fourteen year old son, both with plenty of memories of how things “used to be” before they were so quickly and dramatically altered with the sudden passing of their mother.<br> <br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vPmSbLPeRHE/UEZdP6H2b0I/AAAAAAAABUg/cioG52wcM94/s1600/Family_2011.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vPmSbLPeRHE/UEZdP6H2b0I/AAAAAAAABUg/cioG52wcM94/s1600/Family_2011.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vPmSbLPeRHE/UEZdP6H2b0I/AAAAAAAABUg/cioG52wcM94/s320/Family_2011.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vPmSbLPeRHE/UEZdP6H2b0I/AAAAAAAABUg/cioG52wcM94/s320/Family_2011.jpg"></a>I probably picked that phrase up from a movie where some child lashed out at a stepparent in frustration, but my fear of the phrase developed on its own as I considered the difficulties Mikkel and I might face. So I began praying and pondering what I could do at the beginning of the marriage to make the transition as smooth as possible. And hopefully avoid the dreaded words.<br> <br> One day I was struck by the thought that I should change one word in the statement and then ponder the new meaning.<br> <br> “You’re not my only Dad.”<br> <br> My perspective was widened as I considered that I was just one of many fathers that my children have, and I began to make a list. First they have their Heavenly Father. He knows them perfectly and has been their father much longer than I have.<br> <br> Parker and Arli have Rusty, their father who succumbed to cancer, and my sons have their mother, Michelle, who is also in Heaven. I believe these parents are as interested and involved in their lives as they possibly can be.<br> <br> When we’re baptized we become children of Jesus Christ, and he becomes yet another father for us.<br> <br> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/--TLO2mWwhzw/UEZdQlJOTKI/AAAAAAAABUo/qKZMKIu9zW0/s1600/FamilyinNC.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/--TLO2mWwhzw/UEZdQlJOTKI/AAAAAAAABUo/qKZMKIu9zW0/s1600/FamilyinNC.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/--TLO2mWwhzw/UEZdQlJOTKI/AAAAAAAABUo/qKZMKIu9zW0/s320/FamilyinNC.jpg" width="320" height="240" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/--TLO2mWwhzw/UEZdQlJOTKI/AAAAAAAABUo/qKZMKIu9zW0/s320/FamilyinNC.jpg"></a>As I further considered the grandparents and great-grandparents, and great-great-grandparents that would be equally interested in their children, I realized that I had a lot of help available to me.<br> <br> I decided to share this perspective with my children right after the wedding, telling each of them individually how blessed they are to have not one, but many parents. We talked about each one and the different roles that they play in their lives. Together, all of these parents act together to love them, guide them and bless their lives.<br> <br> And when I’m not sure what to do or how to do it, especially when some type of correction is necessary, I confidently consult with their Heavenly Father, knowing he will have the answer. I go to my children and tell them that “all of the fathers are united” in what I’m asking them to do. <br> <br> The words I feared and worried about ended up teaching me a powerful lesson. I am not their only father. What a relief it is to know that I’m never alone in my parenting. None of us are, really. We are always surrounded by help.</p><p><br> <br> <br> Chris Williams is currently a presenter on the <a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/presenter/21917" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/presenter/21917">TOFW 2012 Tour</a> where he shares his story of loss, forgiveness, and healing. His book, <a href="http://tofw.com/club" _mce_href="../../../club">Let It Go</a>, was released this summer and is the <a href="http://tofw.com/club" _mce_href="../../../club">TOFW SEPTEMBER BOOK OF THE MONTH</a>. See the <a href="http://tofw.com/club" _mce_href="../../../club">BOOK CLUB</a> page for a 25% discount.<br> <span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;" class="Apple-style-span" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;"><br></span> You can also watch more about Chris Williams thru his <a href="http://tofw.com/story/674-book-club-let-it-go-september-book-of-the-month" _mce_href="../../../story/674-book-club-let-it-go-september-book-of-the-month">interview with Glenn Beck</a>.&nbsp;<span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;" class="Apple-style-span" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;">&nbsp;</span><br> <br> </p><div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; font-family: Calibri, sans-serif; font-size: 11pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: Calibri, sans-serif; font-size: 11pt; margin-bottom: 0.0001pt; margin-left: 0in; margin-right: 0in; margin-top: 0in;"> <br></div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt; margin-left: 0in; margin-right: 0in; margin-top: 0in;"> <span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: x-small;" class="Apple-style-span" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: x-small;"><br></span></div> <br> <br> <span style="color: rgb(140, 139, 139); font-family: arial, verdana;" class="Apple-style-span" _mce_style="color: #8c8b8b; font-family: arial, verdana;"><span style="line-height: 20px; font-size: 12px;" class="Apple-style-span" _mce_style="font-size: 12px; line-height: 20px;"><br></span></span> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> VIDEO: The Good News of a Sinking Ship http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Good-News-Sinking-Ship-James%20L-Ferrell/s/675 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Good-News-Sinking-Ship-James%20L-Ferrell/s/675 Tue, 04 Sep 2012 11:28:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center; " _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2q-3EKKJt5g/UEY5WyUCjlI/AAAAAAAABSc/zzDylAmiHGs/s1600/sinkingship.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2q-3EKKJt5g/UEY5WyUCjlI/AAAAAAAABSc/zzDylAmiHGs/s1600/sinkingship.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em; " _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="213" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2q-3EKKJt5g/UEY5WyUCjlI/AAAAAAAABSc/zzDylAmiHGs/s320/sinkingship.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2q-3EKKJt5g/UEY5WyUCjlI/AAAAAAAABSc/zzDylAmiHGs/s320/sinkingship.jpg" width="320" style="cursor: move; " _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; " _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><span style="background-color: white; line-height: 18px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; " _mce_style="background-color: white; line-height: 18px; color: #333333; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;">There are a few life situations where you know, almost immediately, that you're in trouble. Like if you looked down and saw holes in your boat. But TOFW presenter, James Ferrell, explains how getting holes in our boat just might be one of the best things that ever happens to us.</span></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; " _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><font color="#333333" face="arial, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;"><br></font><font color="#333333" face="arial, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;"></font><font color="#333333" face="arial, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;"></font><font color="#333333" face="arial, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;"><br></font><font color="#333333" face="arial, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="background-color: white; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;"><br></font><iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/098b17qV3UI" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/098b17qV3UI" width="640"></iframe></p> No Need to Explain... http://www.tofw.com/No-Need-Explain-DeAnne-Flynn/s/669 http://www.tofw.com/No-Need-Explain-DeAnne-Flynn/s/669 Wed, 29 Aug 2012 10:13:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zxqHEyIy7fY/UD4-op4vk1I/AAAAAAAABPM/K9w25Lb3c2g/s1600/slug.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zxqHEyIy7fY/UD4-op4vk1I/AAAAAAAABPM/K9w25Lb3c2g/s1600/slug.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zxqHEyIy7fY/UD4-op4vk1I/AAAAAAAABPM/K9w25Lb3c2g/s640/slug.jpg" width="640" height="480" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zxqHEyIy7fY/UD4-op4vk1I/AAAAAAAABPM/K9w25Lb3c2g/s640/slug.jpg"></a></div> <br> This summer, I’ve had a frustrating problem.<br> <br> Garden slugs.<br> <br> Those slimy, track-leaving, plant-wreckers have been ruining my flowers. So I drove to a local garden shop, seeking professional advice on how to eradicate them.<br> <br> The specialist just happened to know that I have a small dog and voiced sincere concern about my pet’s safety around slug bait.<br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pftnVjWfzwI/UD4-smmhWWI/AAAAAAAABPU/-JtZ-YnyQCg/s1600/gardencenter.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pftnVjWfzwI/UD4-smmhWWI/AAAAAAAABPU/-JtZ-YnyQCg/s1600/gardencenter.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pftnVjWfzwI/UD4-smmhWWI/AAAAAAAABPU/-JtZ-YnyQCg/s320/gardencenter.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pftnVjWfzwI/UD4-smmhWWI/AAAAAAAABPU/-JtZ-YnyQCg/s320/gardencenter.jpg"></a>“Do you know what you need?” she stated with confidence. “Beer.”</div> <br> “Beer?” I questioned.<br> <br> “Absolutely. Slugs love it. They’re drawn to it. Simply plant open, deep dishes of beer in your flowerbeds and those pesky slugs will fall into them and drown. <br> <br> “Really?” I said hesitantly.<br> <br> “Try it. You’ll see.”<br> <br> Since the other sales associate strongly agreed, I decided to use this unorthodox advice. So on my way home from the temple the following morning, I stopped at the local 7-11 to buy some beer for my slugs.&nbsp; I’ll admit, it felt weird.<br> <br> While handing that can to the cashier to scan, I couldn’t help but imagine how I would feel if my neighbor, my bishop, or a friend had just casually strolled in and wanted to chat. <br> <br> “I have a ‘beer prescription’ from the plant lady, “ I’d be tempted to tell them. <br> <br> “I’m not buying this beer to drink--only to destroy,” I would say.<br> <br> All the way home, I pondered this seemingly harmless scenario. After all, my conscience was clear. <br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_V-YRXJ0ZO8/UD4-yrKFYdI/AAAAAAAABPc/o7NTVLLRYXU/s1600/womanthinking.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_V-YRXJ0ZO8/UD4-yrKFYdI/AAAAAAAABPc/o7NTVLLRYXU/s1600/womanthinking.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_V-YRXJ0ZO8/UD4-yrKFYdI/AAAAAAAABPc/o7NTVLLRYXU/s320/womanthinking.jpg" width="320" height="320" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_V-YRXJ0ZO8/UD4-yrKFYdI/AAAAAAAABPc/o7NTVLLRYXU/s320/womanthinking.jpg"></a>But something about it seemed all-too-familiar – like that sketchy PG-13 movie I felt I needed to justify seeing to my family, those song lyrics my teens sometimes tell me they don’t actually hear, the gossip commonly repeated with the well-known phrase, “Now, don’t tell anyone BUT…”</div> <br> Buying beer for slugs IS harmless, but I want to live my life in such a way that no explanations are necessary. Maybe that’s naïve, but at least I want to try.<br> <br> You should know that the beer—to date—has attracted NO slugs. <br> <br> Just my dog, Lucy.<br> <br> Now I need some solid advice regarding an alcohol recovery program for dogs.<br> <br> Anyone? VIDEO: The Swimsuit Question http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Swimsuit-Question-John%20-Hilton%20III/s/667 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Swimsuit-Question-John%20-Hilton%20III/s/667 Mon, 27 Aug 2012 10:49:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Hbvg-3FQWCk/UDuj0Rvi0gI/AAAAAAAABNM/sGv37kXhLyM/s1600/swim.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Hbvg-3FQWCk/UDuj0Rvi0gI/AAAAAAAABNM/sGv37kXhLyM/s1600/swim.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Hbvg-3FQWCk/UDuj0Rvi0gI/AAAAAAAABNM/sGv37kXhLyM/s320/swim.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Hbvg-3FQWCk/UDuj0Rvi0gI/AAAAAAAABNM/sGv37kXhLyM/s320/swim.jpg"></a>There are 543 questions in the Book of Mormon. TOFW presenter, John Hilton, unpacks one of them as he tells the story of the swimsuit question and the lesson it holds for each of us.</div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> &nbsp;</div> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/4B5OVRRxCXk" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/4B5OVRRxCXk" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><br> Planning is Half the Battle http://www.tofw.com/Planning-Half-Battle-LDS-Living/s/665 http://www.tofw.com/Planning-Half-Battle-LDS-Living/s/665 Fri, 24 Aug 2012 13:05:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CkWcKw7YI24/UDfPyG-8bwI/AAAAAAAABMY/n3ZZqmQo5Pc/s1600/famgame.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CkWcKw7YI24/UDfPyG-8bwI/AAAAAAAABMY/n3ZZqmQo5Pc/s1600/famgame.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CkWcKw7YI24/UDfPyG-8bwI/AAAAAAAABMY/n3ZZqmQo5Pc/s640/famgame.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CkWcKw7YI24/UDfPyG-8bwI/AAAAAAAABMY/n3ZZqmQo5Pc/s640/famgame.jpg"></a></div> <br> What if we told you that we'd found a one-stop shop of AWESOME Family Home Evening resources? Well, we have. And we want to share them with YOU!<br> <br> LDS Living has HUNDREDS of pre-planned lessons on HUNDREDS of topics-so you can meet any need your family has. These lessons come fully equipped with ideas for songs, activities and games, conference talks, and refreshment recipes! <br> <br> For stress-free planning and Monday night goodness, click <a href="http://ldsliving.com/topic/fhe?page=1" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/topic/fhe?page=1">here</a>. Wal-Mart Parking Lot Epiphany http://www.tofw.com/Wal-Mart-Parking-Lot-Epiphany-Merrilee%20-Boyack/s/663 http://www.tofw.com/Wal-Mart-Parking-Lot-Epiphany-Merrilee%20-Boyack/s/663 Wed, 22 Aug 2012 13:47:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3qPUO6GSyQ/UDU2E1jvhKI/AAAAAAAABJI/7_FBiJ1d6E4/s1600/clock.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3qPUO6GSyQ/UDU2E1jvhKI/AAAAAAAABJI/7_FBiJ1d6E4/s1600/clock.jpg"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3qPUO6GSyQ/UDU2E1jvhKI/AAAAAAAABJI/7_FBiJ1d6E4/s640/clock.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-C3qPUO6GSyQ/UDU2E1jvhKI/AAAAAAAABJI/7_FBiJ1d6E4/s640/clock.jpg" border="0" height="638" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> <br> I learned a life lesson at Walmart today. (I actually learn life lessons there often, which might seem strange to some people.)<br> <br> I pulled up in the parking lot, parked my car, and saw that in the spot next to me was an elderly man sitting in a camping chair behind his car. He had the back hatch up to provide shade and held his cup of java in one hand and his crossword puzzle in the other. I teased him that his wife must be taking a looooong time to shop, and he replied, “Well, this lets her enjoy herself.” When I came back out, he helped me load my groceries into my car, and then I said, “Wow, she’s still shopping!” And his reply made me think. “Well,” he said, “she has a lot of time on her hands, just like a lot of us.” <br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0j8hA4XS-0U/UDU1bNA8hzI/AAAAAAAABJA/1_5Oyo9u7sQ/s1600/shoppingcart.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0j8hA4XS-0U/UDU1bNA8hzI/AAAAAAAABJA/1_5Oyo9u7sQ/s1600/shoppingcart.jpg"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0j8hA4XS-0U/UDU1bNA8hzI/AAAAAAAABJA/1_5Oyo9u7sQ/s320/shoppingcart.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0j8hA4XS-0U/UDU1bNA8hzI/AAAAAAAABJA/1_5Oyo9u7sQ/s320/shoppingcart.jpg" border="0" height="213" width="320"></a>I waved goodbye and drove off thinking, Wow.&nbsp; I can’t remember the last time I encountered someone who had a lot of time on their hands.</div><p> <br> I thought about what my senior years would be like and chuckled. I’m a workaholic, so my days will be crammed full of temple work, family history work, grandchildren, writing, traveling, and anything else I can squeeze in. And the thought made me feel grateful.<br> <br> I felt thankful for a church that offers us many avenues of service and teaches us to do many good things of our own free will. I see many seniors who are busily serving missions, serving in the temple, and serving in their wards. They are wonderful, productive people.<br> <br> And yet . . . it’s probably good to slow down sometimes. I’ve been thinking about how my summer has slowed down and how good it feels to catch my breath a bit. I find myself breathing deeper, looking at the blue sky and the gorgeous flowers. I find myself reading books and sitting in the shade.</p><p>I have a little bit of time on my hands. And it’s nice.<br> <br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-GKrn3PWEujQ/UDU2pHEjTxI/AAAAAAAABJQ/-Ew92_4yXoM/s1600/relax.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-GKrn3PWEujQ/UDU2pHEjTxI/AAAAAAAABJQ/-Ew92_4yXoM/s1600/relax.jpg"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-GKrn3PWEujQ/UDU2pHEjTxI/AAAAAAAABJQ/-Ew92_4yXoM/s320/relax.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-GKrn3PWEujQ/UDU2pHEjTxI/AAAAAAAABJQ/-Ew92_4yXoM/s320/relax.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="212"></a>I guess there’s room for both. Too much time spent on crossword puzzles is a waste and too much time running around like a crazy woman is bad for our health. So somewhere in the middle is best, with times of sprinting and doing much good,&nbsp; and times of walking slowly and looking at the sky and praying prayers of thanks. There’s time for all of it.<br> <br> So here’s hoping that you’re having both this summer:&nbsp; the mad dash to the swimming pool with all the kids and then some slow time sitting in a chair watching them play; the monumental effort to get everyone to church all fully dressed and then some quiet moments during the sacrament to ponder the eternities; the packing and planning for the family summer trip followed by those wonderful minutes with the entire family gathered around the campfire.<br> <br> Time—fast or slow—is a gift from God. We can treasure its flow in our lives.<br> <br> For now, I’m going to go read my Ensign. I’ve got just a little bit of time on my hands.</p> VIDEO: Phone Call Serenade http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Phone-Call-Serenade-Macy-Robison/s/659 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Phone-Call-Serenade-Macy-Robison/s/659 Mon, 20 Aug 2012 12:16:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7FkWoESisV8/UDJ-kr4RsiI/AAAAAAAABDo/u5j_zvx0m8g/s1600/phone.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7FkWoESisV8/UDJ-kr4RsiI/AAAAAAAABDo/u5j_zvx0m8g/s1600/phone.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7FkWoESisV8/UDJ-kr4RsiI/AAAAAAAABDo/u5j_zvx0m8g/s320/phone.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7FkWoESisV8/UDJ-kr4RsiI/AAAAAAAABDo/u5j_zvx0m8g/s320/phone.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> Tender mercies come in various shapes and sizes. Macy Robison describes how she discovered two of them, one on a road trip and one from a surprise phone call serenade.<br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZAxuFJLkz-Y" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZAxuFJLkz-Y" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe> Back-to-School Ideas http://www.tofw.com/Back-to-School-Ideas-LDS-Living-Ashley-Evanson/s/658 http://www.tofw.com/Back-to-School-Ideas-LDS-Living-Ashley-Evanson/s/658 Fri, 17 Aug 2012 12:25:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living, Ashley Evanson <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-aqXeRO-pXWk/UC6MBO_C_zI/AAAAAAAABC0/oZ6S8HYoqns/s1600/backtoschooldessertparty.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-aqXeRO-pXWk/UC6MBO_C_zI/AAAAAAAABC0/oZ6S8HYoqns/s1600/backtoschooldessertparty.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-aqXeRO-pXWk/UC6MBO_C_zI/AAAAAAAABC0/oZ6S8HYoqns/s640/backtoschooldessertparty.jpg" width="640" height="480" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-aqXeRO-pXWk/UC6MBO_C_zI/AAAAAAAABC0/oZ6S8HYoqns/s640/backtoschooldessertparty.jpg"></a></div> <br> It's that time of year again! It's the season of newly sharpened pencils and crisp white sheets of notebook paper. While you're squeezing out the last few drops of summer and getting ready for school to start, you might be looking for a fun way to celebrate that first day back. Here are some great ideas from our friends at LDS Living to help everyone get excited for a fresh start. Enjoy!<br> <br><i>It's back to school time! Here are some fun treats, parties, and activities you can do to help your kids get ready for school.</i><br> <br> <i>Read more <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69820-lifestyle-back-to-school-ideas" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69820-lifestyle-back-to-school-ideas">here</a>. </i> BOOK CLUB CONTEST! http://www.tofw.com/BOOK-CLUB-CONTEST/s/657 http://www.tofw.com/BOOK-CLUB-CONTEST/s/657 Wed, 15 Aug 2012 12:14:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-53B5fwBAygU/UCvn8ZlgssI/AAAAAAAABBM/0tzNVcMXh5o/s1600/121346445.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-53B5fwBAygU/UCvn8ZlgssI/AAAAAAAABBM/0tzNVcMXh5o/s1600/121346445.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-53B5fwBAygU/UCvn8ZlgssI/AAAAAAAABBM/0tzNVcMXh5o/s640/121346445.jpg" width="640" height="424" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-53B5fwBAygU/UCvn8ZlgssI/AAAAAAAABBM/0tzNVcMXh5o/s640/121346445.jpg"></a></div> <br> We were asked if the TOFW ladies would be interested in a BOOK with some special insights from SHERI DEW and VIRGINIA PEARCE. <br> <br> Well, of course!<br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bRmFcK-x2eQ/UCvl0c6h8RI/AAAAAAAABBE/xOKANsXfd6o/s1600/TOFWbookcover.png" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bRmFcK-x2eQ/UCvl0c6h8RI/AAAAAAAABBE/xOKANsXfd6o/s1600/TOFWbookcover.png" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bRmFcK-x2eQ/UCvl0c6h8RI/AAAAAAAABBE/xOKANsXfd6o/s1600/TOFWbookcover.png" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bRmFcK-x2eQ/UCvl0c6h8RI/AAAAAAAABBE/xOKANsXfd6o/s1600/TOFWbookcover.png"></a>Next question: would the TOFW ladies be&nbsp;excited about&nbsp;book club&nbsp;CONTEST in connection with this book?</div><p> <br> Yes, most definitely, YES. </p><p>And then the wheels started turning. We decided that if we were going run this fantastic contest, that it would need a really oustanding, YOU'RE-NOT-GOING-TO-BELIEVE-THIS kind of prize. Like a PERSONAL VISIT from Sheri Dew and Virginia Pearce to the winning book club.<br> <br> So that's what we did! It's an incredible book that offers an incredible experience. And you just might win an incredible prize. <br> <br> So watch this video to see what's in store when women gather to discuss the teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and then check out <a href="http://tofw.com/club" _mce_href="../../../club">http://tofw.com/club</a> for more details on how to enter. <br> <br> <iframe height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/jPodQDfiFx8" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/jPodQDfiFx8" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> WORDS. Just How Powerful Are They? http://www.tofw.com/WORDS-Just-How-Powerful-They-Hilary-Weeks/s/652 http://www.tofw.com/WORDS-Just-How-Powerful-They-Hilary-Weeks/s/652 Wed, 15 Aug 2012 02:56:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-E61zQ6dxd0Q/UClOfhw69mI/AAAAAAAAA9A/7N2dG8JoG6c/s1600/86521295.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-E61zQ6dxd0Q/UClOfhw69mI/AAAAAAAAA9A/7N2dG8JoG6c/s1600/86521295.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-E61zQ6dxd0Q/UClOfhw69mI/AAAAAAAAA9A/7N2dG8JoG6c/s640/86521295.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-E61zQ6dxd0Q/UClOfhw69mI/AAAAAAAAA9A/7N2dG8JoG6c/s640/86521295.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> The apostle Peter knew what he was talking about when he said, "For he that will love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil and his lips that they speak no guile."</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> In other words...</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Don't gossip.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Be kind.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Say nice things.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Speak uplifting words (to others...and <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">yourself.</i>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Words are extremely powerful - they can demean or fortify, humiliate or strengthen, persuade or discourage. Paul believed if we used kind, caring, compassionate, encouraging words we will love life.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>We will see good days.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I believe that too.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> That is a powerful promise.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Recently I put the power of speaking kindly to the test - in a bit of an unorthodox way.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I bought two plants.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vsWO-osQ5bU/UClNw7zx0MI/AAAAAAAAA8k/9aFbUX6zRbc/s1600/plants1.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vsWO-osQ5bU/UClNw7zx0MI/AAAAAAAAA8k/9aFbUX6zRbc/s1600/plants1.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vsWO-osQ5bU/UClNw7zx0MI/AAAAAAAAA8k/9aFbUX6zRbc/s400/plants1.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vsWO-osQ5bU/UClNw7zx0MI/AAAAAAAAA8k/9aFbUX6zRbc/s400/plants1.jpg" border="0" height="266" width="400"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Same kind of plants.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Same type of pots.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Both from the same greenhouse.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I decorated one of the pots with stickers.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>I spelled L.O.V.E. on the side.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>I made the pot look pretty.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>The other pot didn't received such lovely treatment.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>It remained plain.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JhSO_ajNfVQ/UClN7j0pGqI/AAAAAAAAA8s/iUK3UkaAZ7k/s1600/plants2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JhSO_ajNfVQ/UClN7j0pGqI/AAAAAAAAA8s/iUK3UkaAZ7k/s1600/plants2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JhSO_ajNfVQ/UClN7j0pGqI/AAAAAAAAA8s/iUK3UkaAZ7k/s400/plants2.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JhSO_ajNfVQ/UClN7j0pGqI/AAAAAAAAA8s/iUK3UkaAZ7k/s400/plants2.jpg" border="0" height="266" width="400"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I set both pots on the kitchen window sill.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Four or five times each day, I would pick up the "LOVE" plant and take it out on the back porch (out of earshot from the other plant. If any of the neighbors heard me, I'm sure they thought I had lost it.)<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Holding it in my hands, I would speak directly to the plant.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>(I know, it's a little strange.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>But stay with me.)<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> I would say...</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> "You are so pretty!"</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> "I can see your beautiful yellow, purple and white flowers!"</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> "You are getting so big!"</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> "You must be the loveliest plant I've ever seen!"</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> After a minute or so of "nice talk," I would return the plant to the window sill.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I assumed the "LOVE" plant would grow bigger, higher, faster and stronger than the other plant.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>I assumed more flowers would blossom.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> That is not what happened.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I am still a little stunned and perplexed by what happened next...</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> After about a week and a half of talking to the nice plant, I left for the weekend.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>(Time Out For Women in Long Beach, CA.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Yay Long Beach!!!<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>We love you!)<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>I left both plants in their spot, both looking perfectly happy and content.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I walked in the door Sunday morning and found this...the plain plant totally wilted and drooping!</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GguIHq8ZsR8/UClN9xHjnmI/AAAAAAAAA80/C75kpqI-df4/s1600/plants3.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GguIHq8ZsR8/UClN9xHjnmI/AAAAAAAAA80/C75kpqI-df4/s1600/plants3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GguIHq8ZsR8/UClN9xHjnmI/AAAAAAAAA80/C75kpqI-df4/s400/plants3.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GguIHq8ZsR8/UClN9xHjnmI/AAAAAAAAA80/C75kpqI-df4/s400/plants3.jpg" border="0" height="266" width="400"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I immediately said to my husband, "What did YOU GUYS DO!?"<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> "Nothing!"<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>He innocently replied.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> "Did you forget to water it?<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Did you over-water it?"</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> "No."<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I was shocked.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>I wasn't sure what to make of it.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>I checked the moisture of the soil - both plants were fine.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> However, the "LOVE" plant had been fortified, strengthened and was standing tall.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Clearly, the kind words <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">had</i> made a difference.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Whatever was lacking - water, sun, a fresh outdoor breeze, new soil, space to expand roots - whatever it was that made the plain plant shrink, had absolutely no effect on the "LOVE" plant.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Kind, encouraging words had kept it strong.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>Those words were allowing the "LOVE" plant to "love life and see good days."<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Words are important, influential - even life-changing.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>What we say and how we say it is crucial - it affects your spouse, children, work associates, extended family, friends, neighbors, strangers...</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> and it affects you.</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> There are over 250,000 distinct words in the English language.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> Use. Them. Wisely.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> (You may be interested in another "words" experiment I conducted.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>You can read about it <a href="http://www.billionclicks.org/blog/2012-08-03/the-rice-experiment/" _mce_href="http://www.billionclicks.org/blog/2012-08-03/the-rice-experiment/">here</a>.)</div> VIDEO: You're in the Middle http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Youre-Middle-Emily-Freeman/s/653 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Youre-Middle-Emily-Freeman/s/653 Mon, 13 Aug 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AVn9rC5EMjk/UCV7gk9rMnI/AAAAAAAAA70/VymYF3JhjKc/s1600/92921269.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AVn9rC5EMjk/UCV7gk9rMnI/AAAAAAAAA70/VymYF3JhjKc/s1600/92921269.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AVn9rC5EMjk/UCV7gk9rMnI/AAAAAAAAA70/VymYF3JhjKc/s320/92921269.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AVn9rC5EMjk/UCV7gk9rMnI/AAAAAAAAA70/VymYF3JhjKc/s320/92921269.jpg"></a></div> Have you ever had to wait for something? Wanted it, or needed it, so badly that you just wanted time to speed up?<br> Have you ever considered that your wait might be because someone else, somewhere else, was praying that time might be slowed down? <br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Iy7qujQwHTQ" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Iy7qujQwHTQ" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe> Stephanie Nielson of NieNie Dialogues: Sharing Her Hope http://www.tofw.com/Stephanie-Nielson-NieNie-Dialogues-Sharing-Her-Hope-LDS-Living-Jamie-Lawson/s/651 http://www.tofw.com/Stephanie-Nielson-NieNie-Dialogues-Sharing-Her-Hope-LDS-Living-Jamie-Lawson/s/651 Fri, 10 Aug 2012 12:28:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living, Jamie Lawson <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-c1HCW_rMM0Q/UCVR8n3tHzI/AAAAAAAAA68/i8tKY0POQBI/s1600/nienie.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-c1HCW_rMM0Q/UCVR8n3tHzI/AAAAAAAAA68/i8tKY0POQBI/s1600/nienie.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-c1HCW_rMM0Q/UCVR8n3tHzI/AAAAAAAAA68/i8tKY0POQBI/s400/nienie.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-c1HCW_rMM0Q/UCVR8n3tHzI/AAAAAAAAA68/i8tKY0POQBI/s400/nienie.jpg" border="0" height="400" width="383"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <br> Every so often, a story comes along that you never forget.<br> And then you have to share it.<br> So, this is us, sharing with YOU, an unforgettable story that just might make you feel a little more grateful, a little more hopeful, a little more faithful. Enjoy!<br> <br> <i>Four years ago, popular NieNie Dialogues blogger Stephanie Nielson was in a horrific plane crash that burned 80 percent of her body. Since the accident, she has overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges to reclaim a beautiful life with her husband and children. Read as she shares her very personal near-death experience, as well as her personal mission: to share the hope of the gospel with others.</i><br> <br> Read more <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69641" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69641">here</a>.<i> </i> Everyday Miracles at 7-11 http://www.tofw.com/Everyday-Miracles-7-11-Jason-Wright/s/648 http://www.tofw.com/Everyday-Miracles-7-11-Jason-Wright/s/648 Wed, 08 Aug 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xYYVN7wDseA/UCAqbcabVzI/AAAAAAAAA2I/0DznQjH1M-c/s1600/choccherry.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xYYVN7wDseA/UCAqbcabVzI/AAAAAAAAA2I/0DznQjH1M-c/s1600/choccherry.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xYYVN7wDseA/UCAqbcabVzI/AAAAAAAAA2I/0DznQjH1M-c/s320/choccherry.jpg" width="320" height="303" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xYYVN7wDseA/UCAqbcabVzI/AAAAAAAAA2I/0DznQjH1M-c/s320/choccherry.jpg"></a></div><p> <br> I don’t know about you, but I’ve been thinking about chocolate covered cherries lately. The tiny treats have always symbolized my childhood Christmas mornings, and Mother always had several boxes scattered out on the counter when we came downstairs. We never had to ask if we could have one.<br> <br> And, obviously, we never had just one.</p><p>So why are they on my mind in the heat of August? What has me thinking of them when Virginia’s smothering humidity reminds me every day that Christmas is months away?<br> <br> It’s all about a good friend and a convenience store.<br> <br> I’ve got a buddy who loves 7-11 and all of its convenient cousins. Is it an unhealthy affection? Tough to say, but I wouldn’t be surprised to learn he has a spare room in his home lined with maps of every 7-11, Handi-Mart and Exxon within a day’s drive.<br> <br> </p><div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ZpbaGEpv-KI/UCAslEXx1KI/AAAAAAAAA2Q/bJ0sxQQvzBI/s1600/cashier.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ZpbaGEpv-KI/UCAslEXx1KI/AAAAAAAAA2Q/bJ0sxQQvzBI/s1600/cashier.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ZpbaGEpv-KI/UCAslEXx1KI/AAAAAAAAA2Q/bJ0sxQQvzBI/s320/cashier.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ZpbaGEpv-KI/UCAslEXx1KI/AAAAAAAAA2Q/bJ0sxQQvzBI/s320/cashier.jpg"></a>When he walks in for a cold drink or quick snack, they don’t just call him by name. They ask about his kids and how his daughter did on last Friday’s spelling test.</div> <br> I noticed a couple years ago that my friend also has a thing for chocolate covered cherries. Each time he visited a store that had them, or any of its individually wrapped siblings&nbsp; -- York Peppermint Patty singles, caramels, tiny Reese Cups, etc. – he always bought a couple extras.<br> <br> One of the extras always goes to me and I appreciate the kindness. But the real generosity happens at checkout.<br> <br> “How are you today?” he asks the clerk.<br> <br> Their replies are often predictable. “Eh... OK, I guess… Just another day…”<br> <br> “That’s it?” he asks. “We can do better than that.”<br> <br> They don’t usually reply with words, but their eyes say plenty.<br> <br> “Here, I promise this will turn your day around.” He slides the candy he’s just bought back across the counter.<br> <br> “Excuse me?” Even the clerks he knows well act surprised each time he treats them.<br> <br> “Trust me,” he says, “nothing turns your day around like a chocolate covered cherry.” <br> <br> They reach for it and slide it the rest toward them. There’s no fighting it; a smile finds their mouth.<br> <br> “Thank you,” they say, often more than once. “Thanks very much. You didn’t have to.”<br> <br> My pal winks, pops his own treat in his mouth and walks out.<br> <br> I eat my freebie treat too and the conversation turns to sports, politics, work and all the other things guys talk about to feel relevant to one another.<br> <br> Sometimes my friend repeats the same scene on the same day at another location. I’ve been present for many of these chocolate covered cherry miracles. But how many have I missed?<br> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ONCJVGG1Ja8/UCAsnDGOFKI/AAAAAAAAA2Y/VrLkxLcNAjA/s1600/redchoc.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ONCJVGG1Ja8/UCAsnDGOFKI/AAAAAAAAA2Y/VrLkxLcNAjA/s1600/redchoc.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ONCJVGG1Ja8/UCAsnDGOFKI/AAAAAAAAA2Y/VrLkxLcNAjA/s320/redchoc.jpg" width="320" height="240" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ONCJVGG1Ja8/UCAsnDGOFKI/AAAAAAAAA2Y/VrLkxLcNAjA/s320/redchoc.jpg"></a><br> I wonder how much money my friend has spent serving others in this small way. At 25 cents each, it can’t be much. I wonder if he’s bought 100 of these tasty gifts. More? 400? Even that lofty number would amount to just $100 over the span of years I’ve known him.<br> <br> But it’s not the money, is it? <br> <br> Like all other acts of the service, it’s the message. For a few seconds every time he walks into gas station or convenience store he send the unmistakable message to those who wait on him that they are not alone.<br> <br> He speaks with action and with his gift of time. He says to them, “I see you. You’re not alone. You’re important. I don’t care where you work, or what you look like.” He practically shouts: “You matter!”<br> <br> Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have someone step into your life, especially on the days you wish would end early, and look you in the eyes with that powerful message?<br> <br> “You matter!”<br> <br> My friend isn’t naïve and neither am I. We know that a 25 cent treat doesn’t solve life’s serious problems. It doesn’t help someone find a new job, cure family illness, or return the prodigal son. <br> <br> But it just might make all those things seem more possible.<br> <br> When life gets tough, when days seem bigger than our spirit, having someone look us in the eye and remind us we’re not alone could be the greatest gift of all.<br> <br> I’m grateful that after so many visits to our favorite watering holes, I’m finally paying attention to my friend’s cherry chocolate miracles. I can’t wait to start performing my own. Come to think of it, I think I'll hit 7-11 on the way home tonight.<br> <br> How about you? VIDEO: An NFL Warm-up to a Primary Tune http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-NFL-Warm-up-Primary-Tune-John-Bytheway/s/646 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-NFL-Warm-up-Primary-Tune-John-Bytheway/s/646 Mon, 06 Aug 2012 08:16:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NA_JOuMOCAk/UB_Tw_5HtbI/AAAAAAAAAy0/Y_GZexg_Z_M/s1600/101496282.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NA_JOuMOCAk/UB_Tw_5HtbI/AAAAAAAAAy0/Y_GZexg_Z_M/s1600/101496282.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NA_JOuMOCAk/UB_Tw_5HtbI/AAAAAAAAAy0/Y_GZexg_Z_M/s320/101496282.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NA_JOuMOCAk/UB_Tw_5HtbI/AAAAAAAAAy0/Y_GZexg_Z_M/s320/101496282.jpg" border="0" height="303" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> It's time to get pumped up for the big game. <br> What songs would you expect on an NFL star's playlist? Well, here are three you'd never guess.<br> <br> <iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/FPyzhTz-w8c" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/FPyzhTz-w8c" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe> A Mormon with a Medal: An Interview with Peter Vidmar http://www.tofw.com/Mormon-Medal-Interview-Peter-Vidmar-LDS-Living/s/645 http://www.tofw.com/Mormon-Medal-Interview-Peter-Vidmar-LDS-Living/s/645 Fri, 03 Aug 2012 08:43:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bfYmC5Utwmw/UBvi73NitSI/AAAAAAAAAxo/PK8U1_5Kc9g/s1600/olympic.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bfYmC5Utwmw/UBvi73NitSI/AAAAAAAAAxo/PK8U1_5Kc9g/s1600/olympic.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bfYmC5Utwmw/UBvi73NitSI/AAAAAAAAAxo/PK8U1_5Kc9g/s640/olympic.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bfYmC5Utwmw/UBvi73NitSI/AAAAAAAAAxo/PK8U1_5Kc9g/s640/olympic.jpg" border="0" height="388" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <br> We are LOVING the Olympics right now! Have you ever wondered what it might be like to stand on a podium with a gold medal hanging around your neck? Or what that lifestyle of training is like for a Mormon athlete? Our friends at LDS Living found some answers when they interviewed Peter Vidmar, an Olympic gold medalist from the 1984 Olympics. <br> <i></i></p><p><i>Mormon Peter Vidmar was part of the 1984 U.S. Men's Gymnastics Team - the first U.S. men's gymnastics team to win gold. Find out how his LDS religion influenced his win, his family, and his outreach to athletes everywhere.</i><br> <br> </p><div> Read more <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69296-just-asking-interview-with-olympic-gold-winner-peter-vidmar" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69296-just-asking-interview-with-olympic-gold-winner-peter-vidmar">here</a>.</div> Our Best Bites: The Recipe That Almost Got Away http://www.tofw.com/Our-Best-Bites-Recipe-Almost-Got-Away-Sara-Wells/s/641 http://www.tofw.com/Our-Best-Bites-Recipe-Almost-Got-Away-Sara-Wells/s/641 Wed, 01 Aug 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-UIC9vmDyF_M/UBbyvQpJMHI/AAAAAAAAAtk/nbt3gotWGHA/s1600/IMG_2543+Final+copy+sm.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-UIC9vmDyF_M/UBbyvQpJMHI/AAAAAAAAAtk/nbt3gotWGHA/s1600/IMG_2543+Final+copy+sm.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-UIC9vmDyF_M/UBbyvQpJMHI/AAAAAAAAAtk/nbt3gotWGHA/s640/IMG_2543+Final+copy+sm.jpg" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-UIC9vmDyF_M/UBbyvQpJMHI/AAAAAAAAAtk/nbt3gotWGHA/s640/IMG_2543+Final+copy+sm.jpg"></a></div> <br> Crazy things happen when one is immersed in writing a cook book.&nbsp; Kitchens are chaotic, dishes are dirtied, pounds are gained, and occasionally minds are lost.&nbsp; With so many details to account for, it’s not surprising that some end up slipping through the cracks- like this recipe!&nbsp; It was created for our new cook book, <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Savoring-Seasons-Our-Best-Bites-Sara-Wells/i/5081120" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Savoring-Seasons-Our-Best-Bites-Sara-Wells/i/5081120">Savoring The Seasons with Our Best Bites</a>, to showcase one of our favorite summer fruits: fresh raspberries.&nbsp; When all was said and done, and we previewed the final copy of the book I realized something…it was missing!&nbsp; I still don’t know how it slipped past us, but it’s way too good not to share, so here you go!<br> <br><strong>Raspberry Cheesecake Crumb Bars</strong><br> <em>One of the highlights of summer is a plentiful supply of fresh berries, and sun-ripened raspberries are one of our favorites.&nbsp; Whether you pick your own, or find them at a local farmer’s market, they will shine in these buttery, crumb-topped bars, and burst with flavor when combined with a layer of almond cheesecake.</em>&nbsp; <br> <br> <strong>Crust and Crumb Topping</strong><br> ½ cup brown sugar<br>½ cup white sugar<br>3 cups all purpose flour<br>½ teaspoon table salt<br>1 teaspoon baking powder<br>1 cup real butter (2 sticks), very cold.<br>1 egg, lightly beaten<br> <br> <strong>Cheesecake Layer</strong><br> 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened <br>1 cup granulated sugar<br>2 tablespoons flour<br>¼ teaspoon baking powder<br>2 teaspoons almond extract<br>2 eggs, at room temperature (place shelled eggs in a bowl of warm tap water for 10 minutes)<br> <br> 2 cups fresh raspberries<br> <br> Preheat oven to 350 degrees.&nbsp; Lightly spray a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with non-stick spray and set aside.<br> <br> In a mixing bowl, combine brown and white sugars, flour, salt, and baking powder.&nbsp; Use a cheese grater to grate butter into flour mixture and use your fingers, or a pastry cutter to crumble mixture together.&nbsp; Add beaten egg and quickly mix together with fork or pastry cutter to distribute.&nbsp; Place half of crumb mixture into prepared pan and use hands to press down in an even layer.&nbsp; Set aside. <br> <br> In a separate mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, 1 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and ¼ teaspoon baking powder until smooth.&nbsp; Add in almond extract, and then eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until smooth. <br> <br>Pour cheesecake mixture over crust layer in pan.&nbsp; Sprinkle raspberries evenly over the top.&nbsp; Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture on top of that.&nbsp; Bake for 40-50 minutes, until lightly golden brown on top.&nbsp; <br> <br> Cool to room temperature, and then chill for 1 hour before cutting. VIDEO: Still Living With My Parents http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Still-Living-My-Parents-Michael-McLean/s/638 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Still-Living-My-Parents-Michael-McLean/s/638 Mon, 30 Jul 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-h9uGmWIemLw/UBL6vjtgKrI/AAAAAAAAAsU/7STnkRqCDiI/s1600/oldman&amp;kid.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-h9uGmWIemLw/UBL6vjtgKrI/AAAAAAAAAsU/7STnkRqCDiI/s1600/oldman&amp;kid.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-h9uGmWIemLw/UBL6vjtgKrI/AAAAAAAAAsU/7STnkRqCDiI/s320/oldman&amp;kid.jpg" width="320" height="247" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-h9uGmWIemLw/UBL6vjtgKrI/AAAAAAAAAsU/7STnkRqCDiI/s320/oldman&amp;kid.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> After 37 years of marriage and their 60th birthdays, Michael McLean and his wife found themselves living in a space that sometimes felt like a nursing home and a daycare center. But 60 is the new 50, right?<br> <br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/PS3o-hIRxh4" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/PS3o-hIRxh4" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> Tips to Organize Your Kitchen http://www.tofw.com/Tips-Organize-Your-Kitchen-LDS-Living/s/637 http://www.tofw.com/Tips-Organize-Your-Kitchen-LDS-Living/s/637 Fri, 27 Jul 2012 10:53:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4xNTz2eZ4xI/UBLEtz34Y5I/AAAAAAAAArs/3AYqEGOVhk8/s1600/kitchen2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4xNTz2eZ4xI/UBLEtz34Y5I/AAAAAAAAArs/3AYqEGOVhk8/s1600/kitchen2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4xNTz2eZ4xI/UBLEtz34Y5I/AAAAAAAAArs/3AYqEGOVhk8/s640/kitchen2.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4xNTz2eZ4xI/UBLEtz34Y5I/AAAAAAAAArs/3AYqEGOVhk8/s640/kitchen2.jpg" border="0" height="504" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> We saw these tips and tricks compiled by LDS Living, and we HAD to share them with you! Which one do you think would work best in your home? <br> <br> <em>With the kitchen often being the center of activity in the house, it can often also become the center of chaos. Try some of these tips to bring back some sanity to your life.</em><br> <br> <em>For some great ideas,<a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69595-lifestyle-tips-to-organize-your-kitchen" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69595-lifestyle-tips-to-organize-your-kitchen"> read on</a>.</em> The Camelot Moments http://www.tofw.com/Camelot-Moments-Brad-Wilcox/s/632 http://www.tofw.com/Camelot-Moments-Brad-Wilcox/s/632 Wed, 25 Jul 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-bpBjenHziYQ/UA2IOKONxdI/AAAAAAAAAo4/wumMDXUCD9g/s1600/knight&amp;castle.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-bpBjenHziYQ/UA2IOKONxdI/AAAAAAAAAo4/wumMDXUCD9g/s1600/knight&amp;castle.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-bpBjenHziYQ/UA2IOKONxdI/AAAAAAAAAo4/wumMDXUCD9g/s640/knight&amp;castle.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-bpBjenHziYQ/UA2IOKONxdI/AAAAAAAAAo4/wumMDXUCD9g/s640/knight&amp;castle.jpg" border="0" height="428" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> We did our best—reading books that said we were doing the right thing by having family scripture study, family prayer, and family home evening. But then our children complained through scriptures, yawned through prayers, and argued through home evening. We wondered if our efforts would ever make any difference.<br> <br>What helped during those frustrating times? We tried to focus on the positive—those shining Camelot moments when things did go right. Remember the legendary King Arthur and his knights of the round table? Remember how for one short, magical moment, everything in his kingdom was perfect? It didn’t last, but it happened. Remember the famous line from the musical by Lerner and Loewe?<br><br> “Don’t let it be forgot, that once there was a spot, for one brief shining moment, that was known as Camelot.”<br><br> I remember one of those Camelot moments when I was making a collect call home while out of state. My daughter, two and a half at the time, answered the phone. The operator asked if she would accept the charges to the phone call. My daughter did not understand.<br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-x6jN6zxetDU/UA2J_YGbSEI/AAAAAAAAApE/V6Jk3RO_n7w/s1600/girlonphone.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-x6jN6zxetDU/UA2J_YGbSEI/AAAAAAAAApE/V6Jk3RO_n7w/s1600/girlonphone.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-x6jN6zxetDU/UA2J_YGbSEI/AAAAAAAAApE/V6Jk3RO_n7w/s320/girlonphone.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-x6jN6zxetDU/UA2J_YGbSEI/AAAAAAAAApE/V6Jk3RO_n7w/s320/girlonphone.jpg" border="0" height="213" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> The frustrated operator said, “Please get an adult to come to the phone.”<br> <br>My daughter said, “My grandpa and grandma went on a mission and I go to Nursery at church and sing songs.”<br> <br>The operator said, “Is your mommy there? Go get your mother.”<br> <br>My little girl continued, “I’m going to get married in the temple!” When my wife finally took the call, the operator was relieved, but I was proud. I said, “Debi, did you hear her? That was our daughter!”<br> <br>However, as positive as we tried to be, the Camelot moments always seemed to fade too quickly. A few days after I returned from my trip, the family was shopping at the grocery store, and things weren’t so wonderful. The excursion had taken longer than it should have and the children were irritable. When we finally got to the checkout line, my eldest son began teasing my little daughter until she burst out in a voice loud enough for the whole store to hear, “Shut up, you stupid idiot!” I said to Debi, “Did you hear her? Whose daughter is this?”<br> <br>I think most parents agree that some days just go better than others. When you get down and feel like everything is falling apart, remember the Camelot moments. That may help you maintain a long-term perspective and keep on going. Maybe that is what helps Heavenly Father parent us through some of our dark days. Perhaps He focuses on our Camelot moments. He knew mortality would be filled with ups and downs because He sent us to earth to learn, but He also knew the ups would make the downs bearable.<br> <br>President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “I know it isn’t easy. It’s discouraging at times, sure. Aren’t you glad it isn’t just fun all the time? Those valleys of discouragement make more beautiful the peaks of achievement.”<br> <br>After the Fall (a definite valley of discouragement), Adam focused on the positive. He realized that because of Christ’s Atonement, the low points did not have to last forever. He exclaimed, “Blessed by the name of God, for because of my transgression my eyes are opened, and in this life I shall have joy, and again in the flesh I shall see God” (Moses 5:10).<br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-6NBotQ9h2RI/UA2KKdeXU_I/AAAAAAAAApM/HwRa85_fsyc/s1600/heartmonitor.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-6NBotQ9h2RI/UA2KKdeXU_I/AAAAAAAAApM/HwRa85_fsyc/s1600/heartmonitor.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-6NBotQ9h2RI/UA2KKdeXU_I/AAAAAAAAApM/HwRa85_fsyc/s320/heartmonitor.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-6NBotQ9h2RI/UA2KKdeXU_I/AAAAAAAAApM/HwRa85_fsyc/s320/heartmonitor.jpg" border="0" height="222" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> I remember as a young schoolteacher (with a large and active class) asking my wife, “When does life even out? Why does it always feel like a roller coaster with so many highs and lows all in the same day? I wish life would just level out.”<br> <br>Being a nurse, Debi replied, “Brad, when you get hooked up to the heart monitor, you don’t want to see a straight line. That’s bad news. It’s the up and down lines that let you know you are alive.”<br> <br>The highs and lows let us know we are participating and not just observing, learning and not just existing. And what keeps us motivated to continue on this learning journey? It is the high points-those are the moments that fill us with hope and perspective. <br> <br>So next time your child says the wrong thing, remember when she said the right one. Next time family home evening disintegrates into nothing more than a fight that begins and ends with prayer, think about how wonderful the dinner conversation was the day before. Next time your teen requests to be dropped off several blocks from school so none of his friends see him with you, remember how he used to sing to you on Mother’s Day. Let those shining Camelot moments life you up and see you through.<br> VIDEO: The Mom Behind the Music http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Mom-Behind-Music-Jenny-Oaks%20Baker/s/633 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Mom-Behind-Music-Jenny-Oaks%20Baker/s/633 Mon, 23 Jul 2012 13:10:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-54GLeAVYrLE/UA2uz1llSbI/AAAAAAAAAp0/oKHId3xe8R8/s1600/mompiano2.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-54GLeAVYrLE/UA2uz1llSbI/AAAAAAAAAp0/oKHId3xe8R8/s1600/mompiano2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-54GLeAVYrLE/UA2uz1llSbI/AAAAAAAAAp0/oKHId3xe8R8/s320/mompiano2.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-54GLeAVYrLE/UA2uz1llSbI/AAAAAAAAAp0/oKHId3xe8R8/s320/mompiano2.jpg" border="0" height="303" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> <br> How many nine-year old kids do you know who accompany Grammy nominated artists? We know one, and she's Jenny Oaks Baker's daughter. The two share the stage to the tune of a Disney duet at a TOFW event.<br> <br> <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/VksNxlsuRaM" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/VksNxlsuRaM" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe> Tips for Sane (and Fun) Road Trips http://www.tofw.com/Tips-Sane-Fun-Road-Trips-LDS-Living/s/630 http://www.tofw.com/Tips-Sane-Fun-Road-Trips-LDS-Living/s/630 Fri, 20 Jul 2012 09:06:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <BR><BR> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://ldsliving.com/images/stories/large/7747.jpg?1342548279" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/images/stories/large/7747.jpg?1342548279" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG style="DISPLAY: block" alt=7747 src="http://ldsliving.com/images/stories/large/7747.jpg?1342548279" border=0 _mce_style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_src="../../../images/stories/large/7747.jpg?1342548279"></A></DIV>While we're away from the TOFW tour for the summer we LOVE taking our families on road trips!&nbsp; But it isn't always the easiest thing to do (especially with little ones) which is why when we saw this <A href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69462-lifestyle-tips-for-sane-and-fun-road-trips" target=_blank _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69462-lifestyle-tips-for-sane-and-fun-road-trips">LDS Living</A> article we just HAD to share it.&nbsp; Do you have tips that have made for a fun "Sane" trip?&nbsp; Share them below!<BR><BR><I>Perhaps one of the most frustrating parts about going on vacation is trying to live out of a suitcase—even if just for a few days—and getting all your belongings all jumbled up. This becomes even more difficult when you have little ones who can’t do things for themselves.&nbsp; </I><BR><BR>Keep reading <A href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69462-lifestyle-tips-for-sane-and-fun-road-trips" target=_blank _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69462-lifestyle-tips-for-sane-and-fun-road-trips">here</A>. From Bonnets to iPods http://www.tofw.com/Bonnets-iPods-Dean-Hughes/s/625 http://www.tofw.com/Bonnets-iPods-Dean-Hughes/s/625 Wed, 18 Jul 2012 04:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HQCYH9XYkQg/UAQ5T7-2XrI/AAAAAAAAAjQ/pgBpfOIcXFk/s1600/redwagon.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HQCYH9XYkQg/UAQ5T7-2XrI/AAAAAAAAAjQ/pgBpfOIcXFk/s1600/redwagon.jpg"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HQCYH9XYkQg/UAQ5T7-2XrI/AAAAAAAAAjQ/pgBpfOIcXFk/s640/redwagon.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HQCYH9XYkQg/UAQ5T7-2XrI/AAAAAAAAAjQ/pgBpfOIcXFk/s640/redwagon.jpg" border="0" height="422" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> What did Nauvoo look like in the 1840s?&nbsp; <br> <br>What time of year was it when the Saints were forced out of Nauvoo?&nbsp; <br> <br>And how did the pioneers cross the river?<br> <br>Everyone thinks they know the answers to these questions about the Saints’ exodus from Nauvoo. The only problem is that much of what we “know” about Church history is not entirely accurate. History is never quite as simple as the stories we like to tell. Actual events are always more complicated, more nuanced, and more troubling than the accounts passed down from one generation to another.&nbsp; <br> <br>To begin with, Nauvoo wasn’t the clean, shining city we often imagine it was. Though Nauvoo was established in a beautiful horseshoe bend of the river, by modern standards it was actually a muddy, rustic place—mostly a log cabin town. For example, one daguerreotype picture of Nauvoo shows the temple in the background and lots of ugly outhouses, fences, and sheds in the foreground.&nbsp; <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-or-k-7sZoyo/UAQ5i-LyoGI/AAAAAAAAAjY/yU4cAspImeM/s1600/pioneergirl.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-or-k-7sZoyo/UAQ5i-LyoGI/AAAAAAAAAjY/yU4cAspImeM/s1600/pioneergirl.jpg"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-or-k-7sZoyo/UAQ5i-LyoGI/AAAAAAAAAjY/yU4cAspImeM/s320/pioneergirl.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-or-k-7sZoyo/UAQ5i-LyoGI/AAAAAAAAAjY/yU4cAspImeM/s320/pioneergirl.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="192"></a>The flight from the little town called Nauvoo began when a number of wagons crossed the Mississippi River on February 4, 1846. But only about three thousand of the Saints left during the winter months, not the whole mass of Saints, like we tend to imagine. Around ten thousand waited until spring, and some didn’t leave until September.&nbsp; </div> <br>Late in February ice formed on the Mississippi, later than it did most years. When we describe this part of the story, we sometimes forget a few important details. First, some of the exiles did cross on the ice, but only a small percentage of the total number. In addition, the cold that froze the ice also froze the pioneers, so even though it helped hundreds get across, it made for a trying experience and dozens of deaths in the camp at Sugar Creek.<br> <br>The vision of the place the early Saints held in their memories—the one we inherited—is not really wrong. But the real story, in my mind, is not the ice bridge that formed. It’s the story of a dispossessed people facing trials and hardships and triumphing over them. There were plenty of backsliders, but we have every reason to honor those who made their way across the plains to the Great Basin. We have a noble heritage—whether we’re direct descendants or not.<br> <br>We like to turn the exodus into a miracle play, with faultless Saints marching toward Zion, their chins always held high and their children always singing and singing and singing. But after spending two years in Nauvoo and spending more years reading and writing about that era, the lesson I have learned is that they were ordinary people, with typical weaknesses and failings, doing what they had to do.<br> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L0sxn3z1nDA/UAQ5pS4vNpI/AAAAAAAAAjg/Ti3iXVkWHAI/s1600/boy+with+ipod.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L0sxn3z1nDA/UAQ5pS4vNpI/AAAAAAAAAjg/Ti3iXVkWHAI/s1600/boy+with+ipod.jpg"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L0sxn3z1nDA/UAQ5pS4vNpI/AAAAAAAAAjg/Ti3iXVkWHAI/s320/boy+with+ipod.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-L0sxn3z1nDA/UAQ5pS4vNpI/AAAAAAAAAjg/Ti3iXVkWHAI/s320/boy+with+ipod.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="212"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> I often heard visitors to Nauvoo say, “We just couldn’t do what they did.” But I prefer the opposite lesson: we have inherited the strength of our forebears. We are also ordinary people with all the foolish tendencies and frailties that humans possess, but we’re facing huge challenges, and we’re doing well. We aren’t wandering through a wilderness, but we’re slogging our way through some deep spiritual and cultural muck—a kind of hindrance to our progress no one in 1846 ever could have imagined.&nbsp; <br> <br>Maybe the ice on the Mississippi helped for a time, but most of the triumph came from putting one foot in front of the other every day. And we’re as strong as they were. We face a culture gone crazy, and the trail ahead is not always well defined. But we’re moving forward, too, and we’re doing our level best to lead our children in the same direction. If our kids sing as they walk, they’re probably lip-syncing to the music on their iPods, but you know what? They’re doing all right. I think the generations are getting stronger, not weaker.<br> VIDEO: Facing Your 25 Year School Reunion http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Facing-Your-25-Year-School-Reunion-Virginia-H%20Pearce/s/624 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Facing-Your-25-Year-School-Reunion-Virginia-H%20Pearce/s/624 Mon, 16 Jul 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-L6hz07nw6uw/T_83O1RmDpI/AAAAAAAAAjA/9o8Sv2kSbTs/s1600/surprised.jpg" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-L6hz07nw6uw/T_83O1RmDpI/AAAAAAAAAjA/9o8Sv2kSbTs/s1600/surprised.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-L6hz07nw6uw/T_83O1RmDpI/AAAAAAAAAjA/9o8Sv2kSbTs/s320/surprised.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-L6hz07nw6uw/T_83O1RmDpI/AAAAAAAAAjA/9o8Sv2kSbTs/s320/surprised.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> So you're chatting and laughing with the classmates of your past when all of sudden, an old friend says something that catches you completely off guard. You're shocked. You don't really know what to say. But you've got to say something...<br> <br><br> <br><br><br> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/D6LM_cjLbyE" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/D6LM_cjLbyE" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> The Sweet Tooth Fairy's B&W Chocolate Cupcake Recipe http://www.tofw.com/Sweet-Tooth-Fairys-BW-Chocolate-Cupcake-Recipe-LDS-Living/s/627 http://www.tofw.com/Sweet-Tooth-Fairys-BW-Chocolate-Cupcake-Recipe-LDS-Living/s/627 Fri, 13 Jul 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-aQLVZaAs4k0/T_3EX04XoAI/AAAAAAAAAiw/CA8nrX4ygPk/s1600/7517%5B1%5D.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-aQLVZaAs4k0/T_3EX04XoAI/AAAAAAAAAiw/CA8nrX4ygPk/s1600/7517%5B1%5D.jpg" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-aQLVZaAs4k0/T_3EX04XoAI/AAAAAAAAAiw/CA8nrX4ygPk/s640/7517%5B1%5D.jpg" width="640" height="384" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-aQLVZaAs4k0/T_3EX04XoAI/AAAAAAAAAiw/CA8nrX4ygPk/s640/7517%5B1%5D.jpg"></a></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> Now that you've met the&nbsp;<a href="http://tofw.com/story/617-meet-the-sweet-tooth-fairy" _mce_href="../../story/617-meet-the-sweet-tooth-fairy">Sweet Tooth Fairy,</a> we invite you to step into her kitchen. This TOFW partner and winner of Cupcake Wars proves, once again, that her cupcakes simply can't be beat. So grab your apron and your mixer and serve up this secret recipe.<br> <br> <em>Want your taste buds to do a little dance? Start reading this delicious black and white chocolate cupcake recipe from </em>Cupcake Wars<i> winner Megan Faulkner Brown - known to most as the Sweet Tooth Fairy.</i><br> <br> Keep reading <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69294-food-dish-the-sweet-tooth-fairys-bw-chocolate-cupcake-recipe" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69294-food-dish-the-sweet-tooth-fairys-bw-chocolate-cupcake-recipe">here.</a><br> Just Keep Playing http://www.tofw.com/Just-Keep-Playing-John%20-Hilton%20III/s/620 http://www.tofw.com/Just-Keep-Playing-John%20-Hilton%20III/s/620 Wed, 11 Jul 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pWNZhtvdim4/T_sPkTE48AI/AAAAAAAAAg4/PA1CRCEq1bs/s1600/126192677.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pWNZhtvdim4/T_sPkTE48AI/AAAAAAAAAg4/PA1CRCEq1bs/s1600/126192677.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pWNZhtvdim4/T_sPkTE48AI/AAAAAAAAAg4/PA1CRCEq1bs/s640/126192677.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pWNZhtvdim4/T_sPkTE48AI/AAAAAAAAAg4/PA1CRCEq1bs/s640/126192677.jpg" border="0" height="428" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> There are times each of us face discouragement: Problems arise, circumstances change, challenges come, those we love make choices that break our hearts. We feel alone and are filled with despair. In such moments, we sometimes close our eyes to the gifts God has given us and ask the Lord what we’ve done to deserve our trials. <br> <br>Sister Janice Kapp Perry, a beloved LDS composer who has given the Church some of its most memorable and meaningful songs, knows such trials well. At one point in her career, she began to feel heavy pain in her left arm and hand. The more she composed, the worse the pain became. She visited doctor after doctor who assured her it was nothing life-threatening, but they had no success in curing the ailment. Soon, the condition became so severe that the middle fingers on her left hand would curl under, and she could no longer play the piano except with her little finger and thumb. She requested priesthood blessings and was promised healing—in due time. Some days she would cry out in frustration, “Why? Why this test? When I am trying to write music to glorify Thee and build the Kingdom, why my hand?”<br> <br> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uMbdM5eBst4/T_sRYI8GFHI/AAAAAAAAAhA/laclVRTFkXw/s1600/78454895.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uMbdM5eBst4/T_sRYI8GFHI/AAAAAAAAAhA/laclVRTFkXw/s1600/78454895.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uMbdM5eBst4/T_sRYI8GFHI/AAAAAAAAAhA/laclVRTFkXw/s320/78454895.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uMbdM5eBst4/T_sRYI8GFHI/AAAAAAAAAhA/laclVRTFkXw/s320/78454895.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="205"></a>A friend suggested visiting a doctor who had helped others with similar problems, so Sister Perry made an appointment. She was surprised to find out that this doctor was blind. During their visit he asked the typical questions, and she complained about how intense the pain was becoming. Then suddenly the irony of the situation struck her. Here she was complaining to a man who was blind.<br> <br> “Doctor,” she finally said, “may I ask you a personal question?” <br> <br>&nbsp;“Of course,” he replied.<br> <br>“How do you deal with your test?” she asked.<br> <br>A smile crept across the man’s face. “I’m so glad you asked,” he responded. He then explained that he had made the determination to focus on what he had and not on what he lacked. “Obviously,” he said, “there are many things I can’t do as a blind physician. But I don’t dwell on those. I focus on what I can do and then I do it well.<br> <br>&nbsp;“Sister Perry,” he then said gently, “I notice you still find a way to compose music even though it is difficult.”<br> <br>Sister Perry nodded thoughtfully.<br> <br>The doctor continued, “My wife and I decided that we could let this trial draw us closer to God or turn us away from Him. We chose to let it draw us closer.”<br> <br>That day Sister Perry went home and wrote another song and dedicated it to the blind doctor. She called it “The Test” (The Light Within, Prime Recordings, 1985):<br> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-W_mkJBcB4kQ/T_sblc3ypKI/AAAAAAAAAhQ/pE4vUge7mi4/s1600/56384448.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-W_mkJBcB4kQ/T_sblc3ypKI/AAAAAAAAAhQ/pE4vUge7mi4/s1600/56384448.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-W_mkJBcB4kQ/T_sblc3ypKI/AAAAAAAAAhQ/pE4vUge7mi4/s320/56384448.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-W_mkJBcB4kQ/T_sblc3ypKI/AAAAAAAAAhQ/pE4vUge7mi4/s320/56384448.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br>Tell me friend, why are you blind?<br>Why doesn’t He who worked the miracles<br>Send light into your eyes?<br>Tell me friend, if you understand<br>Why doesn’t He with power to raise the dead<br>Just make you whole again?<br>It would be so easy for Him.<br>I watch you and in sorrow question why.<br>Then you, my friend, in perfect faith reply:<br>Didn’t He say He sent us to be tested?<br>Didn’t He say the way would not be sure?<br>But didn’t he say we could live with Him<br>Forever more, well and whole<br>If we but patiently endure?<br>After the trial, we will be blessed.<br>But this life is the test.<br> <br>Too many raise an angry fist at heaven when they’re faced with tests and trials, when they should be extending an open hand to receive the help God so willingly offers. So instead of closing our eyes to the miracles in our lives, we should turn to Heaven for strength, focusing on our blessings to help us avoid self-pity and depression. Expressing gratitude to our Heavenly Father helps us move forward with improved perspective and hope, and more important, it helps us see just how much we really have. Even in times of darkness, we can learn to look for and follow the light of the Lord. We can “look to God and live.”<br> VIDEO: Check, Please! http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Check-Please-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/619 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Check-Please-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/619 Mon, 09 Jul 2012 09:50:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-N0lIrSJFHbk/T_sCXfaB2-I/AAAAAAAAAgo/yljdIj_V834/s1600/86500824.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-N0lIrSJFHbk/T_sCXfaB2-I/AAAAAAAAAgo/yljdIj_V834/s1600/86500824.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-N0lIrSJFHbk/T_sCXfaB2-I/AAAAAAAAAgo/yljdIj_V834/s320/86500824.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-N0lIrSJFHbk/T_sCXfaB2-I/AAAAAAAAAgo/yljdIj_V834/s320/86500824.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="213"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> <br> How old were you when you signed your very first check? TOFW presenter, Mary Ellen Edmunds, shares a story about how a little bit of training and whole lot of trust can be the perfect combination. <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/l6-G582PbVc" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/l6-G582PbVc" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe> Meet the Sweet Tooth Fairy http://www.tofw.com/Meet-Sweet-Tooth-Fairy-LDS-Living-Ashley-Evanson/s/617 http://www.tofw.com/Meet-Sweet-Tooth-Fairy-LDS-Living-Ashley-Evanson/s/617 Fri, 06 Jul 2012 09:53:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living, Ashley Evanson <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-9AQdDq9to1E/T_cJF5pMx6I/AAAAAAAAAfE/gmBRVwyOs14/s1600/cupcakes.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-9AQdDq9to1E/T_cJF5pMx6I/AAAAAAAAAfE/gmBRVwyOs14/s1600/cupcakes.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-9AQdDq9to1E/T_cJF5pMx6I/AAAAAAAAAfE/gmBRVwyOs14/s640/cupcakes.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-9AQdDq9to1E/T_cJF5pMx6I/AAAAAAAAAfE/gmBRVwyOs14/s640/cupcakes.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> 1,000 cupcakes baked, frosted, and displayed in two hours. We want to introduce you to one of our SWEETEST TOFW partners: the Sweet Tooth Fairy. <br> <br> <i>Meet Megan Faulkner Brown - a Food Network </i>Cupcake Wars<i> warrior, baking genius, businesswoman, wife, and Mormon mom. You might call her confections amazing. You can simply call </i>her<i> the Sweet Tooth Fairy.</i><br> <br> Keep reading <a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69212-meet-the-sweet-tooth-fairy" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/69212-meet-the-sweet-tooth-fairy">here</a>. Escape to Freedom: An Interview with Mariama Kallon http://www.tofw.com/Escape-Freedom-Interview-Mariama-Kallon-Mariama-Kallon/s/606 http://www.tofw.com/Escape-Freedom-Interview-Mariama-Kallon-Mariama-Kallon/s/606 Tue, 03 Jul 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></div><div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-VYz57t3NwVM/T_MHOeCgtBI/AAAAAAAAAdg/JMQc4vUDaFU/s1600/mariama.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-VYz57t3NwVM/T_MHOeCgtBI/AAAAAAAAAdg/JMQc4vUDaFU/s1600/mariama.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-VYz57t3NwVM/T_MHOeCgtBI/AAAAAAAAAdg/JMQc4vUDaFU/s640/mariama.jpg" width="640" height="498" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-VYz57t3NwVM/T_MHOeCgtBI/AAAAAAAAAdg/JMQc4vUDaFU/s640/mariama.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <br> <em>What does freedom mean to someone who hasn’t had it?&nbsp; How does forgiveness and knowing God play a part in feeling free? We interviewed Mariama Kallon, a woman and TOFW presenter from Sierra Leone, West Africa who endured years of hiding, suffering, and losing family and friends to a war torn country.</em><br> <em></em><br> <strong>What did freedom mean to you as a young girl growing up in Sierra Leone during a time of war?</strong><br> During the war it was hard and I don't feel I ever experienced freedom.&nbsp;&nbsp; You can't do what you want or even live where you want.&nbsp; Many times you have to leave your home right away, running to escape the rebels, leaving all you own behind.&nbsp; You’re running and you just take yourself.&nbsp; You can’t go back but can only move on to where life takes you. The lack of freedom was all because of the greed of men --people thinking they could take advantage of others, which wasn’t right.<br> <br> One of the many freedoms taken away from women was the freedom to take care of yourself.&nbsp; You tried not to be attractive to the rebels. If they found you attractive they would take you with them.&nbsp;&nbsp; During that time, as much as I could remember, we would leave our hair undone and go without make-up.&nbsp;&nbsp; We wouldn’t take care of ourselves out of fear of them; over time, that damaged our feelings of self-worth. We couldn’t be what we wanted but had to protect ourselves and live with the fear of even our virtue being taken away.&nbsp; The rebels thought they could take whatever they wanted.&nbsp; <br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-p_u8yzNcSmY/T_MRy3ktlVI/AAAAAAAAAeE/v8d9c6RL8ZQ/s1600/Slide+1+africavillage.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-p_u8yzNcSmY/T_MRy3ktlVI/AAAAAAAAAeE/v8d9c6RL8ZQ/s1600/Slide+1+africavillage.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-p_u8yzNcSmY/T_MRy3ktlVI/AAAAAAAAAeE/v8d9c6RL8ZQ/s320/Slide+1+africavillage.jpg" width="320" height="207" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-p_u8yzNcSmY/T_MRy3ktlVI/AAAAAAAAAeE/v8d9c6RL8ZQ/s320/Slide+1+africavillage.jpg"></a><br> <strong>How did you learn about the gospel?</strong><br> I learned about the gospel through a lady whose daughters were taken away by the rebels.&nbsp; She shared the hope, courage and joy she found in the gospel during such a hard time.&nbsp; It was the thing that kept her going.&nbsp; So through that invitation I went to church and loved what I saw and mostly what I felt.&nbsp; The feeling that I had is what converted me.&nbsp; I joined the church and it has blessed my life so far.&nbsp; It is my way—my only way of life.<br> <br> <strong>How has being able to forgive helped you?</strong><br> Being able to forgive has helped me to be free.&nbsp; Heavenly Father has commanded me to forgive everyone and I trust that He will do justice where He feels it should be done.&nbsp; I know that I cannot feel that&nbsp; forgiveness towards others just like that.&nbsp; It doesn’t just come naturally.&nbsp; You have to work for it and be willing to submit to what the Lord wants.&nbsp; Pray.&nbsp; Fervently pray. I pray every day for a heart of forgiveness.&nbsp; And one thing I’ve come to find out is that He sees into our hearts.&nbsp; If you have an honest desire He will grant it to you.&nbsp; Without a heart of forgiveness you can’t move forward.&nbsp; You can’t be free.&nbsp; It doesn’t come easy.&nbsp; I pray and I fast and I ask Heavenly Father’s help.&nbsp; I want to forgive.&nbsp; I want to see the light of Christ in others. And it amazes me that He really helps me.&nbsp;&nbsp; <br> <strong></strong></p><p><strong>How has living the gospel given you freedom?</strong><br> The gospel gives us freedom to hope no matter what happens in our lives.&nbsp; When I didn’t have the gospel there was no hope.&nbsp; Especially during the war.&nbsp; You’re ready to die because there isn’t anything more to live for.&nbsp;&nbsp; Through the gospel I now know there is life after this life and I can be with my family and see them again.&nbsp; As long as I try my best to live the way the Lord wants me to, I will be able to be with my Heavenly Father again.&nbsp; You can have those promises, those blessings that he has promised.&nbsp; It’s a very hopeful thing and makes life worth living every day. No matter what happens, with the gospel, you know there is something to live for.&nbsp; It’s a precious thing.</p> VIDEO: "I Created This" http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Created-Brad-Wilcox/s/609 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Created-Brad-Wilcox/s/609 Sun, 01 Jul 2012 23:59:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-VZIKI7gIOjw/T-4HHV425CI/AAAAAAAAAdM/bQYUdtcP1ao/s1600/99666202.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-VZIKI7gIOjw/T-4HHV425CI/AAAAAAAAAdM/bQYUdtcP1ao/s1600/99666202.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-VZIKI7gIOjw/T-4HHV425CI/AAAAAAAAAdM/bQYUdtcP1ao/s320/99666202.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-VZIKI7gIOjw/T-4HHV425CI/AAAAAAAAAdM/bQYUdtcP1ao/s320/99666202.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="303"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> Upon completion, no one believed that the 23 year-old Michelangelo had actually sculpted the Pieta. But he had. <br>Unlike Michelangelo's masterpiece, we are still in the making. But we are not sculpting alone.<br> <br> <br> <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/zAt5KDcnMJY" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/zAt5KDcnMJY" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe> Ultimate Guide: Knee-length Skirts http://www.tofw.com/Ultimate-Guide-Knee-length-Skirts-LDS-Living/s/612 http://www.tofw.com/Ultimate-Guide-Knee-length-Skirts-LDS-Living/s/612 Fri, 29 Jun 2012 11:26:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-00JbRoZa9dk/T-3ktDCK2LI/AAAAAAAAAc8/5HrfLWOoalQ/s1600/skirts.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-00JbRoZa9dk/T-3ktDCK2LI/AAAAAAAAAc8/5HrfLWOoalQ/s1600/skirts.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-00JbRoZa9dk/T-3ktDCK2LI/AAAAAAAAAc8/5HrfLWOoalQ/s640/skirts.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-00JbRoZa9dk/T-3ktDCK2LI/AAAAAAAAAc8/5HrfLWOoalQ/s640/skirts.jpg" border="0" height="386" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <br> The hunt for skirts that are both stylish AND modest can sometimes be a challenge. But we've got some good news. Our friends at LDS Living have rounded up some great finds and we couldn't help but pass them along to you! <br> <i></i></p><p><i>Looking for a modest skirt to wear to church or just around? Look no further. LDS Living has compiled a few fashionable knee-length (or longer) skirts to keep you cool and covered this summer.</i><br> </p><p>Read more here!<br> <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69211-lifestyle-ultimate-guide-knee-length-skirts" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/69211-lifestyle-ultimate-guide-knee-length-skirts">Ultimate Guide: Knee-length Skirts</a><br _mce_bogus="1"></p> Locker Room Talk and Lessons from Football http://www.tofw.com/Locker-Room-Talk-Lessons-Football-David-Kimball-Jericho-Road/s/603 http://www.tofw.com/Locker-Room-Talk-Lessons-Football-David-Kimball-Jericho-Road/s/603 Wed, 27 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by David Kimball of Jericho Road <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-GTqWGvPZjxQ/T-iMkT-hdcI/AAAAAAAAAZc/y7gpEviaFfc/s1600/coach.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-GTqWGvPZjxQ/T-iMkT-hdcI/AAAAAAAAAZc/y7gpEviaFfc/s1600/coach.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-GTqWGvPZjxQ/T-iMkT-hdcI/AAAAAAAAAZc/y7gpEviaFfc/s400/coach.jpg" width="542" height="376" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-GTqWGvPZjxQ/T-iMkT-hdcI/AAAAAAAAAZc/y7gpEviaFfc/s400/coach.jpg"></a></div> <br> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> Before I say anything, allow me to readily admit that a Time Out for Women blog may not be the best place for football stories, but hear me out!&nbsp; As many of you know, the four of us who comprise Jericho Road met in college.&nbsp; We were pretty much your average sports-loving, ramen noodle-eating college guys who also happened to love singing and performing together.&nbsp; &nbsp;Abe won’t brag about it, but he actually walked on and made the BYU football team.&nbsp; So maybe it was just the practice squad and he never quite got that ‘Rudy’ moment, but he accomplished WAY more than any of us did with our athletic skills, so props to Abe!&nbsp; And if you want a good laugh, be sure to ask Justin or Bret about the infamous intramural football practice incident.&nbsp; But I digress….</div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-n4u4wrqPSaY/T-iKlv7A1bI/AAAAAAAAAZA/ZSqlntBM9DA/s1600/fbcoach.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-n4u4wrqPSaY/T-iKlv7A1bI/AAAAAAAAAZA/ZSqlntBM9DA/s1600/fbcoach.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-n4u4wrqPSaY/T-iKlv7A1bI/AAAAAAAAAZA/ZSqlntBM9DA/s320/fbcoach.jpg" width="320" height="214" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-n4u4wrqPSaY/T-iKlv7A1bI/AAAAAAAAAZA/ZSqlntBM9DA/s320/fbcoach.jpg"></a></div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> I learned something during the last NFL Divisional Playoffs that I wanted to share with you.&nbsp;(For those of you reading this who have no idea what that means, it’s the semifinals that determine who will play in the Super Bowl.)&nbsp;I found it interesting that when the original 32 teams were narrowed to the final four, two of them were coached by brothers.&nbsp; Jim Harbaugh coaches the Baltimore Ravens and John Harbaugh coaches the San Francisco 49ers.&nbsp; For anyone to achieve that level of success in coaching is phenomenal, so for two brothers to do it in the same year is almost miraculous.&nbsp; I was curious to know what type of upbringing these brothers had and wondered what could have contributed to their great success.</div><div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;">&nbsp;</div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> One thing really stood out: their dad. Jack Harbaugh was also a football coach who raised his sons to be focused, hard-working and confident.&nbsp; Almost every night when he got home from work he would energetically shout out at his family “Who has it better than us?”&nbsp; In turn his family would shout back and respond, “Nobody!!!”&nbsp; This is a tradition that John Harbaugh still has with his team.&nbsp; Even through tough times he can be heard shouting in the 49er locker room “Who has it better than us?” to which his team will shout back, “Nobody!!!”</div><div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;">&nbsp;</div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oPD2F8ZBt70/T-iKuW0TstI/AAAAAAAAAZI/TKCcmzBRVVY/s1600/fathersonfootball.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oPD2F8ZBt70/T-iKuW0TstI/AAAAAAAAAZI/TKCcmzBRVVY/s1600/fathersonfootball.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oPD2F8ZBt70/T-iKuW0TstI/AAAAAAAAAZI/TKCcmzBRVVY/s320/fathersonfootball.jpg" width="213" height="320" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oPD2F8ZBt70/T-iKuW0TstI/AAAAAAAAAZI/TKCcmzBRVVY/s320/fathersonfootball.jpg"></a>The message is that focusing on the positive in life will help us to be the best that we can be. So often we get down about all of the stress, pressures, and frustrations we have instead of thinking of all of the good things we have going for us.&nbsp; Like those football players, recognizing our blessings and appreciating the challenging opportunities we have in moments of discouragement will immediately bolster our confidence and improve our desires to work even harder and make things even better.&nbsp;</div><div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;">&nbsp;</div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> There is not a person on this earth who doesn’t have access to the hope that Jesus Christ brings.&nbsp; Every single one of us can look to the heavens with eager and bright eyes and with the confidence that Heavenly Father loves us and has a tangible plan for our happiness.&nbsp; So if we’re ever tempted to focus on the negative and dwell on everything that might be going badly, hopefully we can stop ourselves, think about the good news of the gospel for a moment and then quickly ask ourselves "Who has it better than us?”&nbsp;</div><div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;">&nbsp;</div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> Nobody. <?xml:namespace prefix = o /><o:p></o:p></div> VIDEO: Indoor Camping http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Indoor-Camping-Kris-Belcher/s/601 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Indoor-Camping-Kris-Belcher/s/601 Mon, 25 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NDA4sSWViNY/T-TETeUip9I/AAAAAAAAAXc/a3K_pDNxXDI/s1600/indoortent.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NDA4sSWViNY/T-TETeUip9I/AAAAAAAAAXc/a3K_pDNxXDI/s1600/indoortent.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NDA4sSWViNY/T-TETeUip9I/AAAAAAAAAXc/a3K_pDNxXDI/s320/indoortent.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NDA4sSWViNY/T-TETeUip9I/AAAAAAAAAXc/a3K_pDNxXDI/s320/indoortent.jpg" border="0" height="282" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> <br> You know those moments when you catch a little one who's making mischief? Kris Belcher shares one of those moments and talks about listening for loud fire alarms and quiet promptings.<br> <br> <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/lxPQtvg4-hs" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/lxPQtvg4-hs" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640">&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/ifram&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gvX9iTt9I-w/T-TEOcaC7ZI/AAAAAAAAAXU/czbkvN3W9pE/s1600/indoortent.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear:left; float:left;margin-right:1em; margin-bottom:1em"&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;img border="0" height="282" width="320" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gvX9iTt9I-w/T-TEOcaC7ZI/AAAAAAAAAXU/czbkvN3W9pE/s320/indoortent.jpg" /&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/a&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt; e&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/body&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;</iframe> Easy Slow Cooker Recipes http://www.tofw.com/Easy-Slow-Cooker-Recipes-LDS-Living/s/600 http://www.tofw.com/Easy-Slow-Cooker-Recipes-LDS-Living/s/600 Fri, 22 Jun 2012 11:08:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DdYudeHU6Os/T-Spqk2yYZI/AAAAAAAAAXA/ehEhZqB48Fw/s1600/sesame+beef.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DdYudeHU6Os/T-Spqk2yYZI/AAAAAAAAAXA/ehEhZqB48Fw/s1600/sesame+beef.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DdYudeHU6Os/T-Spqk2yYZI/AAAAAAAAAXA/ehEhZqB48Fw/s400/sesame+beef.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DdYudeHU6Os/T-Spqk2yYZI/AAAAAAAAAXA/ehEhZqB48Fw/s400/sesame+beef.jpg" border="0" height="333" width="501"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <br> Sesame Beef. Artichoke and Spinach Dip. Pesto Chicken. Sweet and Spicy Ribs. Brown Sugar Banana Bread. And MORE. <br> <br> ALL easy. ALL in your slow cooker. <br> <br> Hungry yet?<br> <br> LDS Living has compiled some seriously yummy slow cooker recipes to free up your busy days and satisfy your friends and family.<br> <br> Find your new favorite recipes <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68979-easy-slow-cooker-recipes" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68979-easy-slow-cooker-recipes">here</a>!<br> <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68979-easy-slow-cooker-recipes" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68979-easy-slow-cooker-recipes">http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68979-easy-slow-cooker-recipes</a> FATHER'S DAY: From His Point of View http://www.tofw.com/FATHERS-DAY-His-Point-View-Anthony-Sweat/s/574 http://www.tofw.com/FATHERS-DAY-His-Point-View-Anthony-Sweat/s/574 Wed, 20 Jun 2012 01:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;" class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kR6wEdLzIzo/T99Gp5DIyoI/AAAAAAAAASo/-tpfB-EkWjc/s1600/dad.airplane.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kR6wEdLzIzo/T99Gp5DIyoI/AAAAAAAAASo/-tpfB-EkWjc/s1600/dad.airplane.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kR6wEdLzIzo/T99Gp5DIyoI/AAAAAAAAASo/-tpfB-EkWjc/s400/dad.airplane.jpg" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kR6wEdLzIzo/T99Gp5DIyoI/AAAAAAAAASo/-tpfB-EkWjc/s400/dad.airplane.jpg" border="0" height="380" width="570"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> “One father is more than a hundred schoolmasters,” the saying goes, but it could easily and accurately be changed to, “One father<em>ing</em> is more than a hundred schoolmasters.” Often on Father’s Day we reminisce about what our dads have done <em>for</em> us. But from a father’s perspective, I want to discuss what being a dad does <em>to</em> us. Let me share two personal stories to illustrate the profound effect of fatherhood.<br> <strong></strong><br> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XTfuD-tYeWY/T-JEfReleyI/AAAAAAAAAWg/CNXaW8d09ns/s1600/DSC_0055soft.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XTfuD-tYeWY/T-JEfReleyI/AAAAAAAAAWg/CNXaW8d09ns/s1600/DSC_0055soft.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XTfuD-tYeWY/T-JEfReleyI/AAAAAAAAAWg/CNXaW8d09ns/s320/DSC_0055soft.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XTfuD-tYeWY/T-JEfReleyI/AAAAAAAAAWg/CNXaW8d09ns/s320/DSC_0055soft.JPG" border="0" height="320" width="211"></a><strong>Fatherhood and Faithfulness</strong><br> Merely the thought of being a dad has influenced me since my full-time mission. Like many missionaries, I struggled early on and I wasn’t sure if I could do it. The reality of two years in the mountains and jungles of Bolivia with an unknown companion and an unwanted tapeworm named El Flaquito started to weigh me down and make me vacillate in my commitment to serve. When I expressed my uncertainty in a letter to my family, my mom wrote back and said something that recommitted me to the faithful completion of my mission. She didn’t mention Jesus, the Book of Mormon, or the Prophet. She simply mentioned my children. My future children. In a letter I still have today, she wrote about my premortal children watching me from heaven saying, “C’mon dad, you can do it!” For some inexplicable reason, the thought of my future kids rooting for me to serve faithfully gave me the motivation I needed. <br> <br> Now that six of those children have jumped on the slippery slide from premortality and landed in my mortal lap they still motivate me to do right. Sometimes, thinking of this blessing, I’m reminded of the father who overheard his son pray, “Dear God, make me the kind of man my daddy is.” Later that night, the Father prayed, “Dear God, make me the kind of man my son wants me to be.” For me and many dads the world over, fatherhood facilitates faithfulness.<br> <strong></strong><br> <strong>Fatherhood and Selflessness</strong><br> One day on a drive in our marshmallow minivan, when my wife was expecting our fourth child, we had a disagreement. She was having a pregnancy moment (being a little emotional and sensitive) and I was having a manly moment (not being emotional or sensitive enough). As my wife cried in the passenger seat and I insensitiv<a _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-P_mTxHgkcZs/T99ILhyY1JI/AAAAAAAAATA/iOC0ygc_pqg/s1600/daddy.daughter%2Bcoloring.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-P_mTxHgkcZs/T99ILhyY1JI/AAAAAAAAATA/iOC0ygc_pqg/s1600/daddy.daughter%2Bcoloring.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-P_mTxHgkcZs/T99ILhyY1JI/AAAAAAAAATA/iOC0ygc_pqg/s320/daddy.daughter%2Bcoloring.jpg" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-P_mTxHgkcZs/T99ILhyY1JI/AAAAAAAAATA/iOC0ygc_pqg/s320/daddy.daughter%2Bcoloring.jpg" border="0" height="213" width="320"></a>ely drove on, focusing on the road instead of her, a little lispy four-year-old voice from the back seat cried out in rebuke, “Have you forgot? She’s your wife! You should love her! Be nice to her!” I looked back in surprise at my daughter. Between blonde pig tails and a snotty nose, I saw seriousness in her blue eyes and heard powerful truth in her simple words. Waking from my thoughtless stupor, I turned to my wife and apologized, and thanked God for the thoughtfulness of my daughter. <br> <br> There is something about being a dad that helps men to love more deeply, serve more selflessly, and sacrifice more willingly than we might otherwise have. The diapers and dinosaurs, the baths and the Barbies, the chauffeuring and the cheering; all of it helps us turn outward instead of inward, and thus be better men. I know of no better cure for the sickness of selfishness than the fatigue of fatherhood.<br> <br>William Wordsworth wrote, “Father!—to God Himself we cannot give a holier name.” Reverently, I wonder if part of God’s goodness comes as a result of His sacred role as “Father.” I know it has for me. Father's Day WINNERS! http://www.tofw.com/Fathers-Day-WINNERS-Diane-Alabama-Allie-Utah/s/572 http://www.tofw.com/Fathers-Day-WINNERS-Diane-Alabama-Allie-Utah/s/572 Wed, 20 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by Diane from Alabama & Allie from Utah <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BCuDtGdi4IM/T99d_Vb5TjI/AAAAAAAAATU/Gt5RZj9IA-s/s1600/fdwinner.hero.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BCuDtGdi4IM/T99d_Vb5TjI/AAAAAAAAATU/Gt5RZj9IA-s/s1600/fdwinner.hero.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BCuDtGdi4IM/T99d_Vb5TjI/AAAAAAAAATU/Gt5RZj9IA-s/s400/fdwinner.hero.jpg" width="562" height="430" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BCuDtGdi4IM/T99d_Vb5TjI/AAAAAAAAATU/Gt5RZj9IA-s/s400/fdwinner.hero.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p><em> Enjoy our top two stories from the Father's Day contest! </em><br> <br> Diane from Alabama<br> <br> One of the most unforgettable moments I have had with my Dad was the day I turned 18. He was so proud;&nbsp; he told me to get in the car that we were going somewhere. I had no idea where he was going to take me, but as he turned the car toward town I realized where we were going. <br> <br> My Dad has taught me all my life that we all have a right to vote, and that each and every one of us as citizens has a duty to vote. As we entered the courthouse he told me how proud he was of this day, and he also told me that this was the reason he fought for our country, so that I-his daughter-could vote on who I would feel would be the right person to run our country. I have never felt prouder than I was that day when my Dad and I shared this moment together. No one else could share this special moment with me but my Daddy.<br> <br><br> Allie from Utah<br></p><p>When I was little, my dad worked as a firefighter, so he worked 24 hour shifts, then was home for a day. It was always fun to have him home when we got home from school. We loved those days. I remember numerous times throughout the years when I would be sick on his day off, and it never failed, each of those mornings he would cuddle with me on the couch and watch "The Little Mermaid.” That was OUR movie. We loved watching it together. <br> <br> On my wedding day, I didn’t tell my dad beforehand what song we would be dancing to, so as he walked to meet me on the dance floor, "Part of Your World" began to play, and we danced and cried. It was the perfect Father-Daughter moment to follow all those years of loving kindness!</p> VIDEO: A Time To Cry http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Time-Cry-S%20Michael-Wilcox/s/573 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Time-Cry-S%20Michael-Wilcox/s/573 Mon, 18 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cbfa5KZjFy4/T8-XYNVbOmI/AAAAAAAAAOE/iLv-QxjwM8A/s1600/leaves.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cbfa5KZjFy4/T8-XYNVbOmI/AAAAAAAAAOE/iLv-QxjwM8A/s1600/leaves.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cbfa5KZjFy4/T8-XYNVbOmI/AAAAAAAAAOE/iLv-QxjwM8A/s320/leaves.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cbfa5KZjFy4/T8-XYNVbOmI/AAAAAAAAAOE/iLv-QxjwM8A/s320/leaves.jpg" width="320" border="0" height="214"></a> <br> <br> <br> Life takes us through times of joy and peace and times of struggle and loss. S. Michael Wilcox reminds us that even good can come from bad and that love is always the lesson. <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/vtEV_-JP92c" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/vtEV_-JP92c" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p> 5 Ways Fathers Influence Their Daughters http://www.tofw.com/5-Ways-Fathers-Influence-Their-Daughters-LDS-Living/s/596 http://www.tofw.com/5-Ways-Fathers-Influence-Their-Daughters-LDS-Living/s/596 Fri, 15 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <p>This is a special time for all of us as we get to recognize the FATHERS in our lives and the INFLUENCE they have had on us, as well as our children.&nbsp;</p><p>LDS LIVING featured an article this week that captures the important steps for FATHERS TODAY to be able to INFLUENCE their DAUGHTERS, and so we wanted to share it with you!</p><p>HAPPY FATHERS day to all the fathers, husbands, grandfathers, and other influential men in your life!&nbsp;</p><p>Oh...and it might be a good idea to share this with those great FATHERS as well!&nbsp;</p><p><a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68982-5-ways-fathers-influence-their-daughters" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68982-5-ways-fathers-influence-their-daughters">READ THE FULL STORY HERE!</a></p><p><a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68982-5-ways-fathers-influence-their-daughters" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68982-5-ways-fathers-influence-their-daughters">http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68982-5-ways-fathers-influence-their-daughters</a></p> Letting Her Cry http://www.tofw.com/Letting-Her-Cry-Macy-Robison/s/590 http://www.tofw.com/Letting-Her-Cry-Macy-Robison/s/590 Wed, 13 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HFn27kwDu2w/T8-mV4RMnfI/AAAAAAAAAOY/3bU7e1kkhUU/s1600/78318280.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HFn27kwDu2w/T8-mV4RMnfI/AAAAAAAAAOY/3bU7e1kkhUU/s1600/78318280.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HFn27kwDu2w/T8-mV4RMnfI/AAAAAAAAAOY/3bU7e1kkhUU/s400/78318280.jpg" width="541" height="361" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HFn27kwDu2w/T8-mV4RMnfI/AAAAAAAAAOY/3bU7e1kkhUU/s400/78318280.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <br> We sat with my pediatrician at my daughter’s twelve-month checkup. My daughter had been growing and was right on track, progressing the way a little girl should. But I had a pressing question for the doctor: Will I ever sleep through the night again?<br> <br> At about six months, my daughter started sleeping through the night. This went on for a few blissful weeks, until she suddenly started waking up screaming at the same time every night. My husband and I determined she was going through a growth spurt, and started giving her an extra feeding. Then she developed the habit of waking up for that feeding every night—even when the growth spurt was long over. We tried letting her cry it out, but she’s a very determined little lady, and she wore us out. The feedings continued. We were exhausted.<br> <br></p> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZlbstDuHn84/T8-mnxhXKQI/AAAAAAAAAOg/XpcK_UcMnSc/s1600/122201890.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZlbstDuHn84/T8-mnxhXKQI/AAAAAAAAAOg/XpcK_UcMnSc/s1600/122201890.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZlbstDuHn84/T8-mnxhXKQI/AAAAAAAAAOg/XpcK_UcMnSc/s320/122201890.jpg" width="320" height="213" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZlbstDuHn84/T8-mnxhXKQI/AAAAAAAAAOg/XpcK_UcMnSc/s320/122201890.jpg"></a>The pediatrician was our last hope. And mercifully, she had a few great suggestions—keep her bedtime music on all night long, put a few extra binkies in the bed with her, and let her figure it out.</div><p> Let her figure it out. That’s hard. It’s hard to listen to a baby cry.<br> <br> When my daughter was a newborn, my husband and I would drop what we were doing and go right away when she would cry. She was so little and inexperienced. And we knew she was crying because she really needed something, and because&nbsp; we knew we could help, we came to her rescue. <br> <br> But as she’s gotten a bit older, we’ve learned that helping her right away when she cries isn’t always the best thing for her. The nighttime feeding episode made that abundantly clear. So, now we let her cry sometimes. Because sometimes (especially in the middle of the night) what she wants isn’t what she needs. And in those times, even though we still hear her, we are helping her the most when we don’t run to her rescue right away. We are helping her the most when we let her figure things out for herself.<br> <br> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4S_nyBAS-YM/T8-mre_JGJI/AAAAAAAAAOo/qntPtbo8FPY/s1600/83217867.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4S_nyBAS-YM/T8-mre_JGJI/AAAAAAAAAOo/qntPtbo8FPY/s1600/83217867.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4S_nyBAS-YM/T8-mre_JGJI/AAAAAAAAAOo/qntPtbo8FPY/s320/83217867.jpg" width="320" height="212" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-4S_nyBAS-YM/T8-mre_JGJI/AAAAAAAAAOo/qntPtbo8FPY/s320/83217867.jpg"></a>It’s interesting to me that in the scriptures, prayer is often referred to as a cry. In Alma 34, for instance, we’re specifically instructed to cry unto the Lord. We are to cry in our fields, over all our flocks, in our houses, and over our household at morning, mid-day, and evening. (That seems like a lot of crying to me, but perhaps that’s just my perspective as the mother of a toddler talking.)<br> <br> When I was small, I remember that my cries to the Lord were almost always answered. As I’ve grown and gained experience, sometimes my prayers feel like unanswered cries in the night that no one can hear. But I’ve learned that isn’t true. My cries are always heard. My Heavenly Father always hears me. And because our Father in Heaven is perfect, I know that my cries don’t tire him out like my daughter’s earthly cries tire me. As His daughter, I need to remember that just because I’m not getting the answer I want, it doesn’t mean I’m not heard. It just means that maybe the thing that I’m crying and praying for isn’t coming to pass because it isn’t the best for me. Or maybe I need to wait a little longer. Or maybe I just need to figure it out for myself.&nbsp;</p> VIDEO: Mr. Mom For a Summer http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Mr-Mom-Summer-Dean-Hughes/s/595 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Mr-Mom-Summer-Dean-Hughes/s/595 Mon, 11 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-myKuwTS2yYE/T9J8B2xqsdI/AAAAAAAAASU/8GNAI0iIeec/s1600/Mr.Mom.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-myKuwTS2yYE/T9J8B2xqsdI/AAAAAAAAASU/8GNAI0iIeec/s1600/Mr.Mom.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-myKuwTS2yYE/T9J8B2xqsdI/AAAAAAAAASU/8GNAI0iIeec/s320/Mr.Mom.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-myKuwTS2yYE/T9J8B2xqsdI/AAAAAAAAASU/8GNAI0iIeec/s320/Mr.Mom.jpg" width="214" border="0" height="320"></a> <br> <br> <br> <br> Laugh with us as TOFW presenter, Dean Hughes, recounts the summer he spent playing "mom," and reminds us that in the middle of life's busy days we can still find ways to reach out and do good. How do you fit small acts of service into your schedule? <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uNSmtr_staA" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uNSmtr_staA" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p> WINNER: Super Yummy Raspberry Cheesecake Bars http://www.tofw.com/WINNER-Super-Yummy-Raspberry-Cheesecake-Bars-LDS-Living/s/587 http://www.tofw.com/WINNER-Super-Yummy-Raspberry-Cheesecake-Bars-LDS-Living/s/587 Fri, 08 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by LDS Living <br /> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-zSOge6vzXVw/T8_IIWpsVzI/AAAAAAAAAO8/3DKT7OnFCmo/s1600/dessert%2Bbar%2Bhero.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-zSOge6vzXVw/T8_IIWpsVzI/AAAAAAAAAO8/3DKT7OnFCmo/s1600/dessert%2Bbar%2Bhero.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-zSOge6vzXVw/T8_IIWpsVzI/AAAAAAAAAO8/3DKT7OnFCmo/s400/dessert%2Bbar%2Bhero.jpg" width="627" height="366" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-zSOge6vzXVw/T8_IIWpsVzI/AAAAAAAAAO8/3DKT7OnFCmo/s400/dessert%2Bbar%2Bhero.jpg"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <br> <br> LDS Living has just announced the #1 Dessert Bar Recipe from their contest, and we wanted to share it with you! Any recipe that starts with "Super Yummy" is worth trying... <br> <br> <i>Presenting the winner of our best dessert bar contest: Super Yummy Raspberry Cheesecake Bars!</i></p> <div> Four finalists down (see our other favorite <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/tag/Dessert%20Bars" target="_blank" _mce_href="../../../tag/Dessert%20Bars">dessert bar recipes</a> so far), and we’re finally revealing our winner.</div> <div> </div> <div><br></div><div>In this final week, meet our voters’ favorite dessert bar recipe of all time from the 30+ that we received: <strong>Super Yummy Raspberry Cheesecake Bars</strong>, by Vida Lake of San Angelo, Texas.<br> <br> <br> </div><div><div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"> <a href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68978-food-dish-best-dessert-bar-contest-winner-recipe" _mce_href="http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68978-food-dish-best-dessert-bar-contest-winner-recipe"><span style="color: blue; font-family: Calibri;" _mce_style="color: blue; font-family: Calibri;">http://www.ldsliving.com/story/68978-food-dish-best-dessert-bar-contest-winner-recipe</span></a><?xml:namespace prefix = o /><o:p></o:p></div> </div> Father's Day Contest! http://www.tofw.com/Fathers-Day-Contest/s/592 http://www.tofw.com/Fathers-Day-Contest/s/592 Thu, 07 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IOMFIvXvd2o/T8_SZxSeOfI/AAAAAAAAAPQ/rJFiMXMGa68/s1600/daddy.daughter%2Bwinter.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IOMFIvXvd2o/T8_SZxSeOfI/AAAAAAAAAPQ/rJFiMXMGa68/s1600/daddy.daughter%2Bwinter.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IOMFIvXvd2o/T8_SZxSeOfI/AAAAAAAAAPQ/rJFiMXMGa68/s400/daddy.daughter%2Bwinter.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IOMFIvXvd2o/T8_SZxSeOfI/AAAAAAAAAPQ/rJFiMXMGa68/s400/daddy.daughter%2Bwinter.jpg" width="633" border="0" height="386"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <br> Celebrate Your Dad! <br> <br> Share with us ONE unforgettable memory with your dad and see it published in the June 20th TOFW.com newsletter. &nbsp; <br> </p><p>Story must be submitted by June 18th and be within 900 characters. Winner will receive a gift from the TOFW.com Gift Basket! &nbsp; <br> </p><p>Submit your story here:<br> <a href="http://tofw.com/user_submitted_stories/new" _mce_href="../../../user_submitted_stories/new">http://tofw.com/user_submitted_stories/new</a><br _mce_bogus="1"></p> A Worldwide Walk http://www.tofw.com/Worldwide-Walk-Emily-Freeman/s/584 http://www.tofw.com/Worldwide-Walk-Emily-Freeman/s/584 Wed, 06 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tPwvnD7W-0U/T8fEF-09LQI/AAAAAAAAALo/_k1OK0Uc-Rw/s1600/bible%2Bgroup.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tPwvnD7W-0U/T8fEF-09LQI/AAAAAAAAALo/_k1OK0Uc-Rw/s1600/bible%2Bgroup.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tPwvnD7W-0U/T8fEF-09LQI/AAAAAAAAALo/_k1OK0Uc-Rw/s400/bible%2Bgroup.jpg" width="546" height="364" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tPwvnD7W-0U/T8fEF-09LQI/AAAAAAAAALo/_k1OK0Uc-Rw/s400/bible%2Bgroup.jpg"></a></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> It was a feeling that had followed me around for months, gently prodding, almost inviting ––you need more of the scriptures in your life right now.<br> <br> Make room.<br> Set aside some time.<br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2mgLA6zw5kA/T8fGA89t1vI/AAAAAAAAAMU/TEFDGCKQQeg/s1600/100_0162.jpeg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2mgLA6zw5kA/T8fGA89t1vI/AAAAAAAAAMU/TEFDGCKQQeg/s1600/100_0162.jpeg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2mgLA6zw5kA/T8fGA89t1vI/AAAAAAAAAMU/TEFDGCKQQeg/s200/100_0162.jpeg" width="176" height="234" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2mgLA6zw5kA/T8fGA89t1vI/AAAAAAAAAMU/TEFDGCKQQeg/s200/100_0162.jpeg"></a>The feeling grew into a yearning to know more of holy words on gilded pages ––a longing to know more of the Lord.&nbsp; I spoke of the desire with my family and a few of my closest friends, and together we set a goal to read the entire Standard Works this year. Seven pages a day.<br> <br> Before long the enthusiasm for the idea started to grow.&nbsp; As others heard what we were doing they expressed a desire to join us. So, by way of a blog, I extended an invitation ––anyone who wanted was welcome to join us on the journey to read the scriptures daily.<br> <br> People from all around the world began accepting the invitation to spend a little more time in the scriptures.&nbsp; Comments flowed in from Africa to Argentina, and I quickly discovered an unexpected blessing ––through this journey I would be introduced to people I would never have come to know otherwise.&nbsp; <br> <br> Strangers who are now becoming friends drawn together by a unified goal…a humble desire to know more of the Savior, to know more of His words.&nbsp; <br> My new friend Heidi Fernandez from Oregon wrote, “Scripture reading is the base of my day emotionally and spiritually.&nbsp; I wake up and grab my scriptures.&nbsp; I read and try to find one passage to get me through the day.&nbsp; Through my many readings I have found a strong testimony of the Lord’s love for me.&nbsp; Reading every day is my way to keep this alive and is my daily power.”<br> I love how Brenda Freund from Nevada describes her experience, “When my exhaustion reaches the point I can hardly move, when my aching heart makes it difficult to even breathe, when I feel I can't go on another day, the scriptures have been my 'Balm of Gilead'.&nbsp; Evidence that God knows and loves me, the knowledge that He has not forgotten my family, is embedded in the pages.”<br> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fEyrp89k6kg/T8fFAv65cLI/AAAAAAAAAMA/z_baSzDElHw/s1600/young%2Bwoman%2Breading.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fEyrp89k6kg/T8fFAv65cLI/AAAAAAAAAMA/z_baSzDElHw/s1600/young%2Bwoman%2Breading.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fEyrp89k6kg/T8fFAv65cLI/AAAAAAAAAMA/z_baSzDElHw/s320/young%2Bwoman%2Breading.jpg" width="214" height="320" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fEyrp89k6kg/T8fFAv65cLI/AAAAAAAAAMA/z_baSzDElHw/s320/young%2Bwoman%2Breading.jpg"></a><br> These evidences that Brenda talks about have become a theme that has stood out to many of us along this journey.<br> The scriptures are filled with stories that testify of the Lord’s tender mercies.<br> Evidences of the hand of the Lord in the lives of His people.<br> Evidences.<br> <br> Often it is these evidences of the hand of the Lord along the way that motivate us to keep going.&nbsp; The evidences become a source of strength, an anchor.<br> <br> I wanted to find a way to celebrate these evidences.<br> <br> Again I gathered with my family and some close friends.&nbsp; We decided to plan a 13.1 mile walk that will take place this month, on June 23, 2012 to celebrate the evidences of the Lord’s hand in our life.<br> <br> More than just a half marathon, this walk will include several stops where we will take a few minutes to discuss the Deliverer of the Old Testament, and the Savior of the New Testament.&nbsp; We will ponder the tender mercies contained in the Book of Mormon, and the call to action extended in the Doctrine and Covenants.&nbsp; Evidences.<br> <br> This walk will entail a celebration.&nbsp; An experience.&nbsp; A journey.<br> <br> Remarkably, people from all over the World are asking to join this journey.<br> Some will walk with us here in Lehi, Utah; others will join us that day walking a route in the area in which they currently live.&nbsp; Groups are being organized in places like Oregon, Nevada, California, and Nova Scotia, Canada.&nbsp; <br> <br> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jsN1GepPZJ0/UAbzcVcOCEI/AAAAAAAAAnw/ybStMJjlzso/s1600/Share+quote2+copy.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jsN1GepPZJ0/UAbzcVcOCEI/AAAAAAAAAnw/ybStMJjlzso/s1600/Share+quote2+copy.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jsN1GepPZJ0/UAbzcVcOCEI/AAAAAAAAAnw/ybStMJjlzso/s320/Share+quote2+copy.jpg" width="320" height="203" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jsN1GepPZJ0/UAbzcVcOCEI/AAAAAAAAAnw/ybStMJjlzso/s320/Share+quote2+copy.jpg"></a>Hemaima Tait from New Zealand wrote, “I live in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand and two weeks ago invited the Kaikohe Stake Relief Society to pick up the scriptures and read and then take up their shoes and walk with me on the 23 of June. So far 20 sisters have signed up to walk.&nbsp; I have been inspired by the journey and am filled with hope and resolve as my love for the scriptures has taken the place of pride in my day. Walking and reading the scriptures has added oil to my lamp daily, and getting a sense of the participation of others around the world has strengthened me greatly.&nbsp; I have found enormous spiritual strength through this journey ––each day a walk of faith.”&nbsp; <br> <br> I love the thought of friends gathering all over the world on June 23, 2012 to celebrate the power of the Scriptures and to recognize the evidences of the hand of the Lord in our lives.<br> </div> It makes my heart happy.&nbsp; <br> <br> Perhaps you would like to join us on this journey…<br> <br> <a href="http://www.dailyclosertochrist.com/" _mce_href="http://www.dailyclosertochrist.com/">www.dailyclosertochrist.com</a><br> <br> VIDEO: Grandpa's Front Porch Swing http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Grandpas-Front-Porch-Swing-Heidi-Swinton/s/588 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Grandpas-Front-Porch-Swing-Heidi-Swinton/s/588 Mon, 04 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-On8IrfuGVZs/T8lE8JtlpQI/AAAAAAAAAMo/_GHMlX0J1W0/s1600/122470454.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-On8IrfuGVZs/T8lE8JtlpQI/AAAAAAAAAMo/_GHMlX0J1W0/s1600/122470454.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-On8IrfuGVZs/T8lE8JtlpQI/AAAAAAAAAMo/_GHMlX0J1W0/s320/122470454.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-On8IrfuGVZs/T8lE8JtlpQI/AAAAAAAAAMo/_GHMlX0J1W0/s320/122470454.jpg" width="320" border="0" height="213"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> Heidi Swinton shares a story from President Monson's childhood and a lesson he learned while sitting on a front porch swing with his grandpa. What lessons have you learned from quietly watching your family members? <br> <br> <br> <iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uppYI9K3q3c" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uppYI9K3q3c" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p> Living with Same-sex Attraction: Our Story http://www.tofw.com/Living-Same-sex-Attraction-Our-Story-Ty-Danielle-Mansfield/s/586 http://www.tofw.com/Living-Same-sex-Attraction-Our-Story-Ty-Danielle-Mansfield/s/586 Fri, 01 Jun 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by Ty & Danielle Mansfield <br /> </div> <div _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;" class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </span><a _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iPD8qSohEBs/T8fCxEnDPqI/AAAAAAAAALc/oiYgVy6Q-Lk/s1600/Ty%2526Dan%2Bwedding.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iPD8qSohEBs/T8fCxEnDPqI/AAAAAAAAALc/oiYgVy6Q-Lk/s1600/Ty%2526Dan%2Bwedding.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><img _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iPD8qSohEBs/T8fCxEnDPqI/AAAAAAAAALc/oiYgVy6Q-Lk/s400/Ty%2526Dan%2Bwedding.jpg" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iPD8qSohEBs/T8fCxEnDPqI/AAAAAAAAALc/oiYgVy6Q-Lk/s400/Ty%2526Dan%2Bwedding.jpg" width="471" border="0" height="471"></span></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </span><br> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </span><br> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">As a sister company to LDS Living, we thought you would like to hear about one of their current top stories that highlights one couple’s faith, dedication, and experience with same-sex attraction. Enjoy!<br><br><em>In 2003, Ty Mansfield wrote an essay for a class at BYU about how he—a member of the LDS Church who has experienced same-sex attraction—had found peace through the gospel of Jesus Christ. That essay resulted in a book, <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Quiet-Desperation-Understanding-Challenge-Same-Gender-Attraction-Fred-Marilyn-Matis/i/4772927" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Quiet-Desperation-Understanding-Challenge-Same-Gender-Attraction-Fred-Marilyn-Matis/i/4772927">In Quiet Desperation</a>, that made Ty's private struggle public. In 2011 he published an anthology on the same topic, <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Voices-Hope-Ty-Mansfield/i/5062130" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Voices-Hope-Ty-Mansfield/i/5062130">Voices of Hope: Latter-day Saint Perspectives on Same-Gender Attraction</a>.</em><br><em></em></span></p><p><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><em>Editor’s note: <br>Same-sex attraction is a sensitive and complex issue. We feel it is important to try to understand how we can better meet the needs of friends, family, and Church members who experience SSA. Ty and Danielle graciously shared the following story as a first step in creating a more open dialogue about same-gender attraction in the LDS community. We are in no way suggesting marriage is a catch-all solution; we recognize everyone’s experience is different. This is simply one man’s story of finding fulfillment and happiness while living in harmony with the gospel.</em>&nbsp;</span><br> <span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br><a href="http://ldsliving.com/story/68799-living-with-same-sex-attraction-our-story" _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/68799-living-with-same-sex-attraction-our-story">http://ldsliving.com/story/68799-living-with-same-sex-attraction-our-story</a></span></p> VIDEO: Everything But The Tuna http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Everything-Tuna-DeAnne-Flynn/s/581 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Everything-Tuna-DeAnne-Flynn/s/581 Wed, 30 May 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-qpP7mlsHzYQ/T7-v9kDjLCI/AAAAAAAAAHA/rzXL_ZtvWf4/s1600/140053097.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-qpP7mlsHzYQ/T7-v9kDjLCI/AAAAAAAAAHA/rzXL_ZtvWf4/s1600/140053097.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-qpP7mlsHzYQ/T7-v9kDjLCI/AAAAAAAAAHA/rzXL_ZtvWf4/s320/140053097.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-qpP7mlsHzYQ/T7-v9kDjLCI/AAAAAAAAAHA/rzXL_ZtvWf4/s320/140053097.jpg" border="0" height="195" width="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> When you look at your detailed to-do list, do you only see the one thing you forgot or the one thing you didn't get to? DeAnne Flynn shares a funny family moment that reminds us to be a little more patient with ourselves. <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/KAn-UjofvwA" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/KAn-UjofvwA" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe></p> Hungry All the Time http://www.tofw.com/Hungry-All-Time-Wendy-Ulrich/s/577 http://www.tofw.com/Hungry-All-Time-Wendy-Ulrich/s/577 Mon, 28 May 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;" class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KoO1T2PqS84/T76Yw3TmPFI/AAAAAAAAAFs/sEhOvyfsVSo/s1600/86528747.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KoO1T2PqS84/T76Yw3TmPFI/AAAAAAAAAFs/sEhOvyfsVSo/s1600/86528747.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KoO1T2PqS84/T76Yw3TmPFI/AAAAAAAAAFs/sEhOvyfsVSo/s640/86528747.jpg" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KoO1T2PqS84/T76Yw3TmPFI/AAAAAAAAAFs/sEhOvyfsVSo/s640/86528747.jpg" width="640" border="0" height="384"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> Recently I read: And blessed are all they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost (3 Nephi 12:6).<br></p> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1bI0JjwgUmk/T76YL2EXAdI/AAAAAAAAAFk/T3PRcJvsNhE/s1600/90855528.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1bI0JjwgUmk/T76YL2EXAdI/AAAAAAAAAFk/T3PRcJvsNhE/s1600/90855528.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1bI0JjwgUmk/T76YL2EXAdI/AAAAAAAAAFk/T3PRcJvsNhE/s320/90855528.jpg" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1bI0JjwgUmk/T76YL2EXAdI/AAAAAAAAAFk/T3PRcJvsNhE/s320/90855528.jpg" width="320" border="0" height="240"></a>I hunger and thirst a lot. I hunger for Reese’s peanut butter cups, hot bread, funeral potatoes, those marshmallow eggs with the colored candy shells they have apparently stopped making (what’s that about?), and occasionally something as potentially healthy as fresh raspberries or a good artichoke. I thirst after sparkling cider, hot chocolate, fresh orange juice, Fresca mixed with cranberry juice, real lemonade, and occasionally cold water straight from the tap. <br></div><p> I can even think of times when I might say I’ve hungered and thirsted for the Spirit, longing for the taste of prayer on my lips, or the fullness that comes after a spiritual feast. <br> <br> But upon reading this scripture I found myself wondering – do I actually hunger and thirst after righteousness? Do I wander around the world the way I wander around my kitchen looking for just the right acts of righteousness to satisfy some deep spiritual palate? When was the last time I perused the scriptures for an enticing description of service or mercy, the way I might search a menu in a fine restaurant for a tantalizing dish? Do I make out a spiritual grocery list before I head out for the day, eager to stock my pantry with virtues? Do I find myself thirsty mid-afternoon for some old wrong to right, some stranger or friend? Am I eager for a cup of the milk of human kindness, not to drink myself but to pour out on others before I retire at night? <br> Not so much. In fact, I can be sort of unsavory salt. <br> <br> But I’d like to give it a try. Maybe this needs to be my newest fad diet: Replacing my chocolate craving with a yearning to do good. Retraining the part of me that lingers over the buffet table to linger over the ward roster instead, searching out ways to help. Retooling my eyes to linger over beauties and blessings with thanksgiving instead of lingering over a bakery shelf with greed. <br> </p><p> Where would I begin? The Lord taught his disciples to pray for bread for today. I guess I begin with prayer as well, but this would not be a prayer for satisfaction but a prayer for longing: Bless me today with hunger.<br> <a _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sRJt7byNKws/T76X5djJ5DI/AAAAAAAAAFc/I55pn1DU694/s1600/97240536.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sRJt7byNKws/T76X5djJ5DI/AAAAAAAAAFc/I55pn1DU694/s1600/97240536.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sRJt7byNKws/T76X5djJ5DI/AAAAAAAAAFc/I55pn1DU694/s320/97240536.jpg" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sRJt7byNKws/T76X5djJ5DI/AAAAAAAAAFc/I55pn1DU694/s320/97240536.jpg" width="320" border="0" height="213"></a></p><p>Bless me today to be thirsty. Bless me today to be as disgusted with sin as with rotten fish or sour milk. Bless me today to starve for integrity and charity and hope, to dig for them as I would for winter carrots when I had nothing else to eat. Help me thirst as much for a forgiving heart as I would thirst for a cool mountain spring after a hike through a hot desert. <br> <br> Christ was the Bread of Life who gave Himself away, the Living Water who poured Himself out for others – and me – to drink. As I hunger and thirst to be more like Him-to do and say what He would in my place- the miracle of abundance emerges, and I am filled. <br> <br> How have you been filled by small righteous acts?</p> LDS Living Dessert Bar Contest Recipe http://www.tofw.com/LDS-Living-Dessert-Bar-Contest-Recipe/s/580 http://www.tofw.com/LDS-Living-Dessert-Bar-Contest-Recipe/s/580 Fri, 25 May 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-mphDTzzV1AE/T76xFpUhKBI/AAAAAAAAAGw/pNGV5CvglOQ/s1600/Butterscotch%2BNutella%2BBar.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-mphDTzzV1AE/T76xFpUhKBI/AAAAAAAAAGw/pNGV5CvglOQ/s1600/Butterscotch%2BNutella%2BBar.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-mphDTzzV1AE/T76xFpUhKBI/AAAAAAAAAGw/pNGV5CvglOQ/s640/Butterscotch%2BNutella%2BBar.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-mphDTzzV1AE/T76xFpUhKBI/AAAAAAAAAGw/pNGV5CvglOQ/s640/Butterscotch%2BNutella%2BBar.jpg" width="640" border="0" height="428"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;" class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <br></div> <div _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;" class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"> <span _mce_style="color: #1f497d;" style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125);"><span _mce_style="color: black;" style="color: black;"><span _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="font-family: inherit;">We thought we should share with you our FAVORITE LDS Living article this week...the dessert bar contest!<o:p></o:p></span></span></span></div><p> <span _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> </span><br> <span _mce_style="color: black;" style="color: black;"><span _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="font-family: inherit;"><i>We're getting close to revealing the winner of our contest, but let's not forget about the delicious dessert that came in as the third favorite: Butterscotch Nutella Bars.</i><o:p></o:p></span></span><br> <span _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> </span><br> <span _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;">Two finalists down (see our other favorite </span><span _mce_style="color: #0000ff;" style="color: blue;"><a _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/tag/Dessert%20Bars" href="http://ldsliving.com/tag/Dessert%20Bars" target="_blank"><span _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="font-family: inherit;">dessert bar recipes</span></a></span><span _mce_style="color: black;" style="color: black;"><span _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="font-family: inherit;">&nbsp;so far); three more finger-licking recipes to go.<o:p></o:p></span></span><br> <span _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> </span><br> <span _mce_style="color: black;" style="color: black;"><span _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" style="font-family: inherit;">This week, meet our voters’ third most favorite recipe<o:p></o:p></span></span>.<br> <span _mce_style="color: black;" style="color: black;"> </span><br> <a _mce_href="http://ldsliving.com/story/68857-food-dish-best-dessert-bar-contest-2nd-runner-up-recipe" href="http://ldsliving.com/story/68857-food-dish-best-dessert-bar-contest-2nd-runner-up-recipe">http://ldsliving.com/story/68857-food-dish-best-dessert</a><br></p> VIDEO: Fires, Bionicles, and Learning to Act http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Fires-Bionicles-Learning-Act-Merrilee%20-Boyack/s/575 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Fires-Bionicles-Learning-Act-Merrilee%20-Boyack/s/575 Wed, 23 May 2012 13:53:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HNddSHS3ELg/T71Gpoq2JyI/AAAAAAAAAEQ/E2aJfBn2uwk/s1600/Burning+Home.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HNddSHS3ELg/T71Gpoq2JyI/AAAAAAAAAEQ/E2aJfBn2uwk/s1600/Burning+Home.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HNddSHS3ELg/T71Gpoq2JyI/AAAAAAAAAEQ/E2aJfBn2uwk/s200/Burning+Home.jpg" width="200" height="189" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HNddSHS3ELg/T71Gpoq2JyI/AAAAAAAAAEQ/E2aJfBn2uwk/s200/Burning+Home.jpg"></a></div> <span style="font-family: Calibri;" _mce_style="font-family: Calibri;"><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125);" _mce_style="color: #1f497d;">Like thousands of others, o</span>ne little boy in Chicago watched the <span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125);" _mce_style="color: #1f497d;">devastation a fire that raged in California.&nbsp; But unlike thousands of others, this little boy </span>felt the need to do something. <span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125);" _mce_style="color: #1f497d;">Merrilee Boyack shares the story of how h</span>is small decision to act <span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125);" _mce_style="color: #1f497d;">led to</span> big results.</span></span><br> <br> </div> <iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/rtyRc-9KUrQ" frameBorder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/rtyRc-9KUrQ"></iframe><br> <br> Be Moved with Compassion http://www.tofw.com/Moved-Compassion-Emily-Freeman/s/570 http://www.tofw.com/Moved-Compassion-Emily-Freeman/s/570 Mon, 21 May 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-wpdKZJ9aSMQ/T7bRM7XMwMI/AAAAAAAAADg/EUQWX6SqDwU/s1600/Hospital.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-wpdKZJ9aSMQ/T7bRM7XMwMI/AAAAAAAAADg/EUQWX6SqDwU/s1600/Hospital.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-wpdKZJ9aSMQ/T7bRM7XMwMI/AAAAAAAAADg/EUQWX6SqDwU/s400/Hospital.jpg" width="530" height="372" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-wpdKZJ9aSMQ/T7bRM7XMwMI/AAAAAAAAADg/EUQWX6SqDwU/s400/Hospital.jpg"></a></div><p> It was a day my mom won’t ever forget. The phone call.&nbsp; The news that her dear friend had delivered a baby.&nbsp; Stillborn.&nbsp;</p><p><br> Immediately, my mom received a prompting to go to the hospital.&nbsp; When she walked into the room her friend looked up at her from the bed and through her tears she said, “I just feel so empty.”&nbsp; </p><p><br> My mom searched for the right words to say and when none came she climbed into the hospital bed next to her friend, wrapped her arms around her, and together they cried.</p><p><br> Several days after that experience the husband of my mom’s friend came to our home to talk to my mom.&nbsp; He told her, “What you did that afternoon changed my life.&nbsp; So often we think to ourselves, I will give them some space, some time to heal, and we wait.&nbsp; What made all the difference to my wife that day wasn’t anything you said, it was the fact that you were there that made all the difference.”</p><p><br> It was the succoring.&nbsp; The weeping together, the arms outstretched, the heart swelling in compassion.</p><p><br> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7FoF0Bjf_Fg/T7bRv5j1RUI/AAAAAAAAADs/hEDIGg0A3vw/s1600/Compassion.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7FoF0Bjf_Fg/T7bRv5j1RUI/AAAAAAAAADs/hEDIGg0A3vw/s1600/Compassion.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7FoF0Bjf_Fg/T7bRv5j1RUI/AAAAAAAAADs/hEDIGg0A3vw/s320/Compassion.jpg" width="320" height="192" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-7FoF0Bjf_Fg/T7bRv5j1RUI/AAAAAAAAADs/hEDIGg0A3vw/s320/Compassion.jpg"></a>Recently I was reading in Moses and I stumbled across a verse that has occupied my mind.&nbsp; “Wherefore Enoch knew…and wept and stretched forth his arms, and his heart swelled wide as eternity.”&nbsp; (Moses 7:41)</p><p><br> Today I have tried to focus my thoughts on the things I know…the family down the street whose dad just lost his job...the boy around the corner who needs a place to stay for a bit…the mother five houses down whose son is having major surgery on Tuesday…and I weep…and I want to stretch my arms and let my heart swell wide enough for my whole neighborhood.</p><p><br> I am coming to realize just the knowing, and the weeping, and stretching the arms wide, and heart swelling is not enough.&nbsp; To succor means to run to.&nbsp; To be there.</p><p><br> How do I know?</p><p><br> Because “Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching…and healing every sickness and every disease among the people…when he saw…he was moved with compassion on them.”&nbsp; (Matthew 9:35-36)</p><p><br> He didn’t just have compassion. He was moved with compassion. </p><p><br> His compassion, His arms reaching and heart swelling, caused Him to act.&nbsp; </p><p><br> I find myself wondering how we can learn to be moved with compassion rather than to just watch with compassion?&nbsp; How can we learn to act?</p><p><br> Maybe we could try to remember the times in our life when we have been in desperate need of compassion.&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;<br> Do you know what it is to ache? To yearn for something that is unobtainable?&nbsp; Have you felt a weight so heavy you have not had strength enough to bear it?&nbsp; Has sleepless night after sleepless night ever left you emotionally exhausted?&nbsp; In the darkest moments of your life have you ever thought there might be nowhere to turn?&nbsp; <br> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2-c3gYFnumE/T7bTXxd4NfI/AAAAAAAAAD4/COSwit5BqhU/s1600/sad%2Blittle%2Bgirl.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2-c3gYFnumE/T7bTXxd4NfI/AAAAAAAAAD4/COSwit5BqhU/s1600/sad%2Blittle%2Bgirl.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2-c3gYFnumE/T7bTXxd4NfI/AAAAAAAAAD4/COSwit5BqhU/s320/sad%2Blittle%2Bgirl.jpg" width="320" height="214" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2-c3gYFnumE/T7bTXxd4NfI/AAAAAAAAAD4/COSwit5BqhU/s320/sad%2Blittle%2Bgirl.jpg"></a>If so, then your heart ––through your own personal experience–– has been taught. Because you have felt the aching, you can sense how to ease the suffering.&nbsp; I am reminded of a line found in a familiar hymn, “As thy days may demand so thy succor shall be…” (How Firm a Foundation, hymn no. 85)&nbsp; </p><p><br> Would you be willing to help succor someone whose day demands aching?&nbsp; What if their day demands mourning?&nbsp; Perhaps you know someone whose day demands a burden beyond their ability to bear.&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;<br> You have been there before ––what would have brought you comfort, peace, or strength?</p><p><br> Within the knowing and through the weeping let your arms stretch wide and your heart swell and then pray for inspiration as to what you might do.</p><p><br> Become moved with compassion.&nbsp; </p><p><br> We may not know just what it is someone else is going through, but chances are we have felt many of the same emotions.&nbsp; We become moved with compassion when we walk beside another and smooth the road ahead.&nbsp; In that moment we are on the Lord’s errand.&nbsp; Our hands become His.<br> For a moment ponder the people within your circle of influence.&nbsp; </p><p><br> Is there one who comes to mind who could benefit from your compassion right now?</p><p><br> Could you weep with them, stretch your arms out to them, allow your heart to swell wide in their behalf?&nbsp; Could you become moved with compassion?<br> If you were on the Lord’s errand, what would He have you do?&nbsp; </p><p><br> Perhaps today you could ask Him.<br> <br> Emily Freeman<br> <a href="http://www.dailyclosertochrist.com/" _mce_href="http://www.dailyclosertochrist.com/">www.dailyclosertochrist.com</a></p> Seek this Summer! http://www.tofw.com/Seek-Summer-TOFW/s/567 http://www.tofw.com/Seek-Summer-TOFW/s/567 Tue, 15 May 2012 23:40:00 -0600 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <P><BR></P> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yz1xZDvJvuI/T7LLrOCmhII/AAAAAAAAAgY/O7wHU1j0FtU/s1600/SeekTheGoodLogo.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yz1xZDvJvuI/T7LLrOCmhII/AAAAAAAAAgY/O7wHU1j0FtU/s1600/SeekTheGoodLogo.jpg"><IMG height=260 src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yz1xZDvJvuI/T7LLrOCmhII/AAAAAAAAAgY/O7wHU1j0FtU/s320/SeekTheGoodLogo.jpg" width=320 border=0 _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yz1xZDvJvuI/T7LLrOCmhII/AAAAAAAAAgY/O7wHU1j0FtU/s320/SeekTheGoodLogo.jpg"></A></DIV> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Nh8A-SAOEak/T7LJwZFJkII/AAAAAAAAAgQ/ELyr99tYwhA/s1600/logo.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Nh8A-SAOEak/T7LJwZFJkII/AAAAAAAAAgQ/ELyr99tYwhA/s1600/logo.jpg"><BR></A></DIV> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0LoZtyHWwCA/T7LJafGKi3I/AAAAAAAAAgA/gAU_VTEaJqE/s1600/webC1016TOFWLB_610.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0LoZtyHWwCA/T7LJafGKi3I/AAAAAAAAAgA/gAU_VTEaJqE/s1600/webC1016TOFWLB_610.jpg"><BR></A></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><I>Take a moment to step back and take a deep breath in…go ahead, we’ll wait.&nbsp; What are the things that need your heart most <B>right now</B>?&nbsp; Are you ready for them?&nbsp; This summer is all about, SEEKING THE GOOD, the good you can do, the good you can create, and the good life has waiting for you.&nbsp; </I></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><I>See what Brad Wilcox, Wendy Ulrich, and others are doing this summer to SEEK THE GOOD…</I></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><I>&nbsp;</I><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 12pt; FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'>My wife and I are tending grandkids while their parents have a get-away.&nbsp; Crazy how it takes my wife, my college-age daughter, and me (3 adults) to take care of Paisley and Pyper (2 babies) that their mom usually handles alone (1 mom).&nbsp; If my daughter-in-law is reading this, please know how much we respect and admire you!&nbsp; ~Brad Wilcox&nbsp;</SPAN><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal> <TABLE class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="FLOAT: right; MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: right" cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 _mce_style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;"> <TBODY> <TR> <TD style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><A style="CLEAR: right; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: auto; MARGIN-RIGHT: auto" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jMc1SfErxCo/T7LIH0l5a2I/AAAAAAAAAf4/vZ4lFcryl_c/s1600/Wendy+Ulrich+2012.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jMc1SfErxCo/T7LIH0l5a2I/AAAAAAAAAf4/vZ4lFcryl_c/s1600/Wendy+Ulrich+2012.jpg"><IMG height=133 src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jMc1SfErxCo/T7LIH0l5a2I/AAAAAAAAAf4/vZ4lFcryl_c/s200/Wendy+Ulrich+2012.jpg" width=145 border=0 _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jMc1SfErxCo/T7LIH0l5a2I/AAAAAAAAAf4/vZ4lFcryl_c/s200/Wendy+Ulrich+2012.jpg"></A></TD></TR> <TR> <TD class=tr-caption style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;">Wendy Ulrich</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 12pt; FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'>&nbsp;</SPAN>We have a lot of happy anticipation at our house this summer planning for the wedding of our middle daughter, which of course includes getting everyone together from far-flung places. I’m also excited about teaching a Sunday School class for Young Single Adults in our ward.&nbsp; ~Wendy Ulrich<BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR>&nbsp;With summer approaching and schedules relaxing, I am seeking the good each day by taking time to connect with my children and making sure we spend quality moments making memories with one another and as a family. :)&nbsp;&nbsp; ~Sara Wells (from <I>Our Best Bites</I>)<BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 12pt" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 12.0pt;"> <TABLE class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="FLOAT: left; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left" cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 _mce_style="float: left; margin-right: 1em; text-align: left;"> <TBODY> <TR> <TD style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><A style="CLEAR: left; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: auto; MARGIN-RIGHT: auto" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VM1CfLnS44o/T7LIFMS9FtI/AAAAAAAAAfg/HpdUgVL-59E/s1600/Carmen+Rasmussen+2012.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VM1CfLnS44o/T7LIFMS9FtI/AAAAAAAAAfg/HpdUgVL-59E/s1600/Carmen+Rasmussen+2012.jpg"><IMG height=147 src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VM1CfLnS44o/T7LIFMS9FtI/AAAAAAAAAfg/HpdUgVL-59E/s200/Carmen+Rasmussen+2012.jpg" width=149 border=0 _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VM1CfLnS44o/T7LIFMS9FtI/AAAAAAAAAfg/HpdUgVL-59E/s200/Carmen+Rasmussen+2012.jpg"></A></TD></TR> <TR> <TD class=tr-caption style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>This summer, I've made it a goal to read one chapter of the scriptures every night before I turn in. My husband and I have gotten into the lazy habit of watching TV far too late into the night...and getting into bed to read my scriptures not only gets me to sleep a little earlier thus making it easier for me to tackle the tasks of my day, but also gives me the spiritual nightcap I need to face my daily challenges. I love the scriptures. And as I listen to the soft sound of crickets chirping outside in the warmer night air, my lamp is burning as I seek for the good within their priceless pages.&nbsp;&nbsp; ~Carmen Rasmusen Herbert</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal style="mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto" _mce_style="mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-margin-top-alt: auto;"> <TABLE class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="FLOAT: left; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left" cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 _mce_style="float: left; margin-right: 1em; text-align: left;"> <TBODY> <TR> <TD style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><A style="CLEAR: left; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: auto; MARGIN-RIGHT: auto" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1UGsMtvB-_c/T7LIFwoOmJI/AAAAAAAAAfo/nlPWpUmdlRA/s1600/John+Hilton+Faculty+Photo.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1UGsMtvB-_c/T7LIFwoOmJI/AAAAAAAAAfo/nlPWpUmdlRA/s1600/John+Hilton+Faculty+Photo.jpg"><IMG height=131 src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1UGsMtvB-_c/T7LIFwoOmJI/AAAAAAAAAfo/nlPWpUmdlRA/s200/John+Hilton+Faculty+Photo.jpg" width=101 border=0 _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1UGsMtvB-_c/T7LIFwoOmJI/AAAAAAAAAfo/nlPWpUmdlRA/s200/John+Hilton+Faculty+Photo.jpg"></A></TD></TR> <TR> <TD class=tr-caption style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>I’m going to be spending time this summer seeking the goodness that comes from family relationships at family reunions. I’ll also be visiting China and seeking the good by getting to meet new friends there. ~John Hilton III</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR>A way I'm seeking the good this summer? Spending some quality time with my husband and little ones as we go on some fun family vacations! It's easy to find the good in my life when I'm with the ones I love....on a beach....in the sun:)&nbsp; ~McKenzie Turley<BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal> <TABLE class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="FLOAT: right; MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: right" cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 _mce_style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;"> <TBODY> <TR> <TD style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><A style="CLEAR: right; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: auto; MARGIN-RIGHT: auto" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bhfFawTBRpU/T7LIHaue42I/AAAAAAAAAfw/3ZtiaYy8a88/s1600/Macy+Robison+2012.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bhfFawTBRpU/T7LIHaue42I/AAAAAAAAAfw/3ZtiaYy8a88/s1600/Macy+Robison+2012.jpg"><IMG height=145 src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bhfFawTBRpU/T7LIHaue42I/AAAAAAAAAfw/3ZtiaYy8a88/s200/Macy+Robison+2012.jpg" width=89 border=0 _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bhfFawTBRpU/T7LIHaue42I/AAAAAAAAAfw/3ZtiaYy8a88/s200/Macy+Robison+2012.jpg"></A></TD></TR> <TR> <TD class=tr-caption style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="text-align: center;">Macy Robison</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>After a busy winter and spring, I'm going to be seeking the good with my family. My oldest starts kindergarten this fall, and we need to have as much fun as possible before that happens!&nbsp; ~Macy Robison</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 12pt" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 12pt;"><BR></DIV> Video: Hanger Danger http://www.tofw.com/Video-Hanger-Danger-Whitney-Permann%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/566 http://www.tofw.com/Video-Hanger-Danger-Whitney-Permann%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/566 Mon, 14 May 2012 16:05:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p><a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2xpBysFmevQ/T7J9R_hQr8I/AAAAAAAAAeo/FThjWaER1bQ/s1600/86538856.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2xpBysFmevQ/T7J9R_hQr8I/AAAAAAAAAeo/FThjWaER1bQ/s1600/86538856.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2xpBysFmevQ/T7J9R_hQr8I/AAAAAAAAAeo/FThjWaER1bQ/s200/86538856.jpg" width="133" height="200" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2xpBysFmevQ/T7J9R_hQr8I/AAAAAAAAAeo/FThjWaER1bQ/s200/86538856.jpg"></a>Who knew a simple hanger would&nbsp;change their plans of fun to be a day&nbsp;spent in a hospital near Dallas.&nbsp;&nbsp;Whitney, of&nbsp;Mercy River, shares the sweet moments that came even during such a difficult time. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uZZUaX6SeUU" frameBorder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uZZUaX6SeUU" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> Change: how it shows in Zebra Stripes and Peace Signs http://www.tofw.com/Change-how-shows-Zebra-Stripes-Peace-Signs-Brooke-Stone%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/561 http://www.tofw.com/Change-how-shows-Zebra-Stripes-Peace-Signs-Brooke-Stone%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/561 Wed, 09 May 2012 22:59:00 -0600 <div> </div> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Efv5M1sCnkc/T6l6R7biBGI/AAAAAAAAAeQ/OAfFgPhNrs0/s1600/DSC_0008.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Efv5M1sCnkc/T6l6R7biBGI/AAAAAAAAAeQ/OAfFgPhNrs0/s1600/DSC_0008.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG height=426 src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Efv5M1sCnkc/T6l6R7biBGI/AAAAAAAAAeQ/OAfFgPhNrs0/s640/DSC_0008.JPG" width=640 border=0 _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Efv5M1sCnkc/T6l6R7biBGI/AAAAAAAAAeQ/OAfFgPhNrs0/s640/DSC_0008.JPG"></A></DIV> <P><A style="CLEAR: right; FLOAT: right; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: 1em" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OhQq2LPmrfw/T6l6TicrHLI/AAAAAAAAAeY/usnk95dPLb0/s1600/DSC_0013.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OhQq2LPmrfw/T6l6TicrHLI/AAAAAAAAAeY/usnk95dPLb0/s1600/DSC_0013.JPG" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG height=213 src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OhQq2LPmrfw/T6l6TicrHLI/AAAAAAAAAeY/usnk95dPLb0/s320/DSC_0013.JPG" width=320 border=0 _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OhQq2LPmrfw/T6l6TicrHLI/AAAAAAAAAeY/usnk95dPLb0/s320/DSC_0013.JPG"></A><BR>My baby is nearing the age of “I think I’ll climb out of my crib now”. Now that she’ll soon be in a “big girl bed”, I’ve been thinking about re-decorating the room she shares with her sister. I thought I would get my 6 year old’s opinion on what she would like in this new room, so we had the following conversation:<BR><BR>ME: Kallie, what color should we paint your walls?<BR>KALLIE: Mmm, zebra stripes.<BR>ME: Really? What color should we paint your bed? (It’s currently olive green.)<BR>KALLIE: Purple!<BR>ME: Wow. What kind of quilt do you want?<BR>KALLIE: I want one with peace signs all over it. And peace sign pillows.<BR>ME: And what about your dresser?<BR>KALLIE: Let’s keep it green.<BR>ME: OK, what kind of quilt should Kate [the baby] have?<BR>KALLIE: Well, actually, give her the peace sign quilt. I want one with horses on it. With horse pillows.<BR><BR>Ahem. I don’t think so. Call me a bad mom, but I’m not doing ANY of that. Besides the fact that it will make a ridiculous looking room, there is a little fact I know about my daughter. Her taste is constantly changing. (Thank heavens.) I know the minute I paint two stripes on the wall, she’ll want something different.<BR><BR>Every time I think back to my own childhood, I think about all the ways I have changed. Not just my tastes, but my opinions, my testimony, and even parts of my personality. It’s the inevitable—with each experience comes the opportunity to alter some part of ourselves. Changing is sometimes difficult, or even painful. But here are my thoughts on this:<BR><BR>1.&nbsp; We are blessed to have the ability to change ourselves. I think it’s sometimes easy to get discouraged. I often think I’m not changing fast enough. There is so much to do, so much to learn, so much to improve. I have a family member who became so overwhelmed with amount of changes he would have to make in his life, he gave up trying. And although he has made huge strides in the last few years, it saddens me to think of how much LESS work he would have to do, if he hadn’t given up in the first place. <BR><BR>There’s a great quote from Dennis Gaunt:<BR>“If there is an overarching message from the Book of Mormon, if there is one grand lesson that we’re supposed to learn above all the others, perhaps it is this: that because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, because of His mercy and grace, we don’t have to be like the bad guys. We can repent and be forgiven of our sins. We can be clean again. Because if even some of the worst bad guys of the Book of Mormon can repent and become good guys—if even the “most vilest of sinners” can become “new creatures”—then so can we.” <BR><BR>Don’t give up on yourself. Heavenly Father hasn’t. <BR><BR>2.&nbsp; OTHERS have the ability to change. I’ve been in situations where I have been extremely hurt by someone else, and at times it’s been difficult to believe that someone that caused me so much pain won’t do it again. But they can change! I’ve been learning that unless I change my view of people, and allow them to transform, then the healing power of the Atonement can’t work. <BR>A quote from Jeffrey R. Holland, (and it’s one of my favorites): “Let people repent. Let people grow. Believe that people can change and improve. Is that faith? Yes! Is that hope? Yes! Is that charity? Yes! Above all, it is charity, the pure love of Christ. If something is buried in the past, leave it buried. Don’t keep going back with your little sand pail and beach shovel to dig it up, wave it around, and then throw it at someone, saying, “Hey! Do you remember this?” Splat!”<BR>Believe others can change. Believe YOU can change. <BR><BR>And if you have any ideas on ways to change a 6 year olds mind on peace signs, let me know.</P> Being the Backside of an Elephant http://www.tofw.com/Being-Backside-Elephant-Kris-Belcher/s/557 http://www.tofw.com/Being-Backside-Elephant-Kris-Belcher/s/557 Tue, 08 May 2012 12:27:00 -0600 <div> </div> <P><SPAN style="COLOR: #0d0d0d" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;"><A style="CLEAR: left; FLOAT: left; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xeLgFpGxLZE/T6lLqHwdkAI/AAAAAAAAAck/Ket9J_ONMec/s1600/200241356-001.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xeLgFpGxLZE/T6lLqHwdkAI/AAAAAAAAAck/Ket9J_ONMec/s1600/200241356-001.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG height=426 src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xeLgFpGxLZE/T6lLqHwdkAI/AAAAAAAAAck/Ket9J_ONMec/s640/200241356-001.jpg" width=640 border=0 _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xeLgFpGxLZE/T6lLqHwdkAI/AAAAAAAAAck/Ket9J_ONMec/s640/200241356-001.jpg"></A>It was to be my greatest role ever! True, I was only in the sixth grade, but my part as Jumbo the elephant in the school play would launch my acting career for sure. I was to share the large gray elephant costume with my friend Katie, who would be the two front legs and head, while I was the back legs and rear end. Hmm. I hope that wasn’t typecasting.</SPAN> <BR></P> <P class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="CLEAR: right; FLOAT: right; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: 1em" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tQRCv9_Lsto/T6lLqx39kdI/AAAAAAAAAcs/SaBWFo-GzzU/s1600/80490091.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tQRCv9_Lsto/T6lLqx39kdI/AAAAAAAAAcs/SaBWFo-GzzU/s1600/80490091.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG height=320 src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tQRCv9_Lsto/T6lLqx39kdI/AAAAAAAAAcs/SaBWFo-GzzU/s320/80490091.jpg" width=213 border=0 _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tQRCv9_Lsto/T6lLqx39kdI/AAAAAAAAAcs/SaBWFo-GzzU/s320/80490091.jpg"></A></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: rgb(13,13,13)" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;"></SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: #0d0d0d" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;">We were to sing a beautiful duet as Jumbo with an English accent and we felt like stars as we practiced. But, a few days before the performance, Katie got the chicken pox, and I was left to play the part of the pachyderm alone. Although I felt sorry for my friend, I was secretly thrilled for my chance to shine. I was promoted from the rear end of Jumbo, to be the entire animal. I would now wear the papier-mâché elephant head, as well as the tail, and it would only be my English accented song which would sound from the cardboard paper-towel-tube trunk. I was nervous, but very excited.</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: rgb(13,13,13)" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;"></SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: #0d0d0d" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;">The big night arrived, and I sang proudly in the chorus. Midway through the play, a few minutes before I would make my debut as Jumbo, disaster struck. A student on the front row of the risers stole my thunder. Right in the middle of our performance, he threw up. It’s true. Then he made his way toward the wings, and mid-stride, once again, he vomited all over the stage. Talk about a show stopper. The entire auditorium was stunned into complete silence.&nbsp;</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: rgb(13,13,13)" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;"></SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: #0d0d0d" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;">For several moments, no one moved. At last, a member of the audience came on stage to clean up the mess. When his job was complete, he whispered to all of us on the risers, “The show must go on!”</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: #0d0d0d" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;">That was it! All my dreams of stardom vanished with the vomit!&nbsp;</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="COLOR: #0d0d0d" _mce_style="color: #0d0d0d;">The show did go on, and I sang my well-rehearsed part; however, I was not the star as I had anticipated. When my “would be” legendary night is recalled, it is the boy on the risers with the flu, and the volunteer janitor (my father) who claim the spotlight.</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing>At times, doesn’t motherhood seem similar to my elephant experience? I mean, if you’re anything like me, for years, we dream of the day when we will be mothers, and when that wonderful day comes, somewhere between the diapers and no sleep we are surprised that it’s not quite the perfection we imagined. But even with the alarming differences there also comes the humor, the memories, the connections made between women, and a strength we find within ourselves that we didn’t even know existed.&nbsp;And, in the end, I wouldn’t trade it for anything—even with the vomit.</P> PJ's and a Bloody Nose http://www.tofw.com/PJs-Bloody-Nose-Brooke-Stone%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/556 http://www.tofw.com/PJs-Bloody-Nose-Brooke-Stone%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/556 Wed, 02 May 2012 23:23:00 -0600 <div> </div> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yyI8-_nhkZs/T6GtMXjYNvI/AAAAAAAAAcI/Q28LHUw7QHk/s1600/DSC_0115.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yyI8-_nhkZs/T6GtMXjYNvI/AAAAAAAAAcI/Q28LHUw7QHk/s1600/DSC_0115.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG height=426 src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yyI8-_nhkZs/T6GtMXjYNvI/AAAAAAAAAcI/Q28LHUw7QHk/s640/DSC_0115.JPG" width=640 border=0 _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yyI8-_nhkZs/T6GtMXjYNvI/AAAAAAAAAcI/Q28LHUw7QHk/s640/DSC_0115.JPG"></A></DIV> <P><BR><BR></P> <DIV class=MsoNormal>About a year ago, some friends and I decided it would be fun to take our kids to one of those indoor bounce houses. That morning, while I was&nbsp;choosing my kids’ outfits for the day, I had the impression to call my sister. She had just had her second baby, and I knew she was feeling overwhelmed. Sure enough, as soon as I called, she broke into tears. I offered to take her three-year-old daughter with me on my outing, which she gratefully accepted. Then I asked her if she needed a visit right away. Again her answer was in the affirmative. So I threw on a sweatshirt, my hair went up in a ponytail, I left my face clear of any makeup, and threw all my kids’ clothes and hair accessories into a large bag. “I’ll just get them ready at my sister’s house,” I thought. Hmmm, yeah.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>Twenty minutes later, as I pulled into her driveway, I looked around me and realized I HAD FORGOTTEN THE BAG OF THE KIDS’ CLOTHES. And I didn’t have time to run back to my house. Which meant I would be taking my kids to the bounce house in their PJs. Luckily, my sister’s daughter is the same age as my son, so she had some gray skinny jeans and a John Deere T-shirt that fit. He was dressed in girls’ clothes, but he was dressed. My daughter would have to stay in her jammies.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>When I arrived at the bounce house it was packed. While my friends all showed up looking like they had just got back from the salon, their well-dressed kids in tow, we arrived frazzled and mismatched.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>Cue the next disaster.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>My son bonked his nose, which started bleeding. That bloody nose, mixed with tears and snot, was now applied to my sweatshirt. And it made him grumpy the rest of the time. At one point he stood at the top of a huge slide, and then screamed for me to help him down. I was nine months pregnant and CLEARLY past the weight limit on the slide, I had to try and talk him down, semi-yelling at him so he could hear me over his own howling. At one point a woman came up and asked me, “So . . . where are you from?” The look and tone of her voice left me knowing she was thinking the local homeless shelter.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>Do you remember what started my hectic day?&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;Ah, yes. I was acting on a prompting to call my sister.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>Have you ever had moments like this? When you try to do something good, and something goes wrong? Or someone misinterprets your actions and leaves you questioning the promptings from Heavenly Father?</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><A style="CLEAR: left; FLOAT: left; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UeCEMqqvRfY/T6GtOceazKI/AAAAAAAAAcQ/xJjvXoiJuus/s1600/DSC_0212.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UeCEMqqvRfY/T6GtOceazKI/AAAAAAAAAcQ/xJjvXoiJuus/s1600/DSC_0212.JPG" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1"><IMG height=213 src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UeCEMqqvRfY/T6GtOceazKI/AAAAAAAAAcQ/xJjvXoiJuus/s320/DSC_0212.JPG" width=320 border=0 _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UeCEMqqvRfY/T6GtOceazKI/AAAAAAAAAcQ/xJjvXoiJuus/s320/DSC_0212.JPG"></A>A couple of weeks ago I read something that I found interesting. In James Ferrell’s new book <I style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">Falling to Heaven</I>, he says that there’s a difference between being HUMILIATED and being HUMBLE. Humiliation is still a form of pride—worrying about what other people may think of you. (Like the woman at the bounce house who thought I was homeless.) Being humble is knowing that without God, we are nothing. It’s not an absence of self-worth—we’re His children and He loves us. But when we recognize the lack of our own strength, we’re more likely to rely on His.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>The three of us joke that our sometimes-humiliating experiences in Mercy River keep us humble. But I’m starting to see that’s not entirely true. Heavenly Father’s goal is not to humiliate us, but maybe to help us learn to completely trust in Him. Maybe it’s to teach us to let go of the world’s opinion. Sometimes we receive promptings from the Lord but we hesitate to follow them out of fear of what others may think of us. My mind is filled with examples; walking out of an immoral movie and being ridiculed by friends, standing up to a coworker and losing your job, being shunned from your family for following your faith, reaching out to a neighbor and getting rejected. But just because the outcome isn’t immediately positive, doesn’t mean we were wrong in following that inspiration.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>I could’ve chosen to turn my car back around and drive home to retrieve the bag, but I knew my sister needed me more. I knew what my family would look like at the bounce house, but I decided my sister was more important. And in the end, I’m glad I chose to follow that prompting.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>Is there a prompting YOU’VE been scared to follow? Are you afraid of what others may think of you?&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal>Chin up! Follow it! You have what it takes, and our Father is rooting for you.</DIV> <DIV class=MsoNormal><BR></DIV> Ode to the Mama! http://www.tofw.com/Ode-Mama-DeAnne-Flynn-Emily-Watts/s/554 http://www.tofw.com/Ode-Mama-DeAnne-Flynn-Emily-Watts/s/554 Tue, 01 May 2012 16:12:00 -0600 <div> by DeAnne Flynn & Emily Watts <br /> </div> <P class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="MARGIN-LEFT: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-udvKpOU0iFQ/T6Boqx0JF9I/AAAAAAAAAbs/KyUXv_fvxjM/s1600/138196371.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-udvKpOU0iFQ/T6Boqx0JF9I/AAAAAAAAAbs/KyUXv_fvxjM/s1600/138196371.jpg" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><IMG height=425 src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-udvKpOU0iFQ/T6Boqx0JF9I/AAAAAAAAAbs/KyUXv_fvxjM/s640/138196371.jpg" width=640 border=0 _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-udvKpOU0iFQ/T6Boqx0JF9I/AAAAAAAAAbs/KyUXv_fvxjM/s640/138196371.jpg"></A></P> <P>&nbsp;</P> <P style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" align=center _mce_style="text-align: center;" _mce_keep="true">&nbsp;</P> <P><I style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">Funny and Fun thoughts on motherhood you’ll want to share!<SPAN style="mso-spacerun: yes" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </SPAN>From TOFW Presenters DeAnne Flynn &amp; Emily Watts.</I></P> <P><I>&nbsp;</I><I style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;"></SPAN></I></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">Need a Nap?<SPAN style="mso-spacerun: yes" _mce_style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </SPAN></SPAN></B><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">--DeAnne Flynn</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">Believing I would readily relate, a weary mother of eight once shared the following story. Although penned by an unknown author, it may strike a very familiar chord with you. </SPAN></P> <P><A style="CLEAR: right; FLOAT: right; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-LEFT: 1em" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nG9g1bNNvX4/T6BozSnARoI/AAAAAAAAAb0/vibeEhP7hnI/s1600/sleeping-dog7-300x168.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nG9g1bNNvX4/T6BozSnARoI/AAAAAAAAAb0/vibeEhP7hnI/s1600/sleeping-dog7-300x168.jpg" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><IMG src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nG9g1bNNvX4/T6BozSnARoI/AAAAAAAAAb0/vibeEhP7hnI/s1600/sleeping-dog7-300x168.jpg" border=0 _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nG9g1bNNvX4/T6BozSnARoI/AAAAAAAAAb0/vibeEhP7hnI/s1600/sleeping-dog7-300x168.jpg"></A><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;">“An older, tired-looking dog&nbsp;wandered into my yard. I could tell from her collar and&nbsp;well-fed belly that she had a home and was well taken care of. She calmly came over to me, I gave her a few pats&nbsp;on the head; she then followed me into my house, slowly walked down the&nbsp;hall, curled up in a corner and fell&nbsp;asleep.</SPAN></P> <P><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;">An hour later, she went to the door and I let her out.&nbsp;</SPAN></P> <P><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;">The next day she was back, greeted me in my yard,&nbsp;walked inside and resumed her spot in the hall and again slept for about an hour. This continued off and on for&nbsp;several weeks.</SPAN></P> <P><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;">Curious, I pinned a note to her collar: ‘I would&nbsp;like to find out who the owner of this wonderful, sweet dog is and ask if you are aware that almost every afternoon your&nbsp;dog comes to my house for a nap.’</SPAN></P> <P><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;">The next day she arrived for her nap, with a&nbsp;different note pinned to her collar: ‘She lives in a home with 6 children, 2 under the age of 3.&nbsp; She’s trying to catch up on sleep…</SPAN></P> <P><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 11pt" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt;">Can I come over tomorrow?’ ”</SPAN></P> <P>&nbsp;</P> <P class=MsoNoSpacing><B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">Pat Your Back &amp; Toot Your Horn </SPAN></B><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">– Emily Watts</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">I recently read on a young mother’s blog, “There’s quite a culture of being an awesome mom around here. It can be hard to keep up.”</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">I knew just what she meant. But I also know the remedy. Maybe, if this is your challenge, you’re trying to keep up with the wrong people. I happen to think comparisons are just an exercise in futility anyway, since you can never really know all the factors that should be weighed in the balance, but if you’re going to insist on comparing yourself to someone else, what would happen if you chose a different someone?</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">In many places and families in the world:</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><A style="CLEAR: left; FLOAT: left; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-8GRZleJO1Sw/T6BpNERBusI/AAAAAAAAAb8/vc0UTy0xWdQ/s1600/76764079.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-8GRZleJO1Sw/T6BpNERBusI/AAAAAAAAAb8/vc0UTy0xWdQ/s1600/76764079.jpg" imageanchor="1" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><IMG height=213 src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-8GRZleJO1Sw/T6BpNERBusI/AAAAAAAAAb8/vc0UTy0xWdQ/s320/76764079.jpg" width=320 border=0 _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-8GRZleJO1Sw/T6BpNERBusI/AAAAAAAAAb8/vc0UTy0xWdQ/s320/76764079.jpg"></A><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">• a meal of vitamin-fortified cold cereal with real milk on it would be a nutritional luxury unheard of—let alone a second meal <I style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">on the same day</I> of peanut butter on two full slices of bread. (Now do you feel less guilty about what you fed your kids today?)</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">• nine hundred square feet of living space for a single family would be considered spacious. (I tell my house, “It’s not your fault you were built in this neighborhood. In New York, you’d be a $2,000,000 condo.”)</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">• children are taken to church two or three times a year. (How does this change your perspective about having spent an hour and a half in the foyer—again?)</SPAN></P> <P class=MsoNormal><SPAN style="FONT-FAMILY: 'Times New Roman','serif'" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman','serif';">When my daughter’s first baby was born, a friend of mine expressed more excitement than I had really expected. He explained his reaction: “It just makes me so happy to think of a spirit child of Heavenly Father getting to come to a family that really wants her, that will love her and take care of her and be so happy she came.” I may not have been able to provide every wonderful thing for my kids—but that kind of love? <I style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal" _mce_style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">That</I>, I could do. And that’s the only thing I really need to keep up with.</SPAN></P> VIDEO: Need a Change of Behavior? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Need-Change-Behavior-Wendy-Ulrich/s/550 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Need-Change-Behavior-Wendy-Ulrich/s/550 Sun, 29 Apr 2012 23:59:00 -0600 <div> </div> <DIV class=separator style="CLEAR: both; TEXT-ALIGN: center" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><A style="CLEAR: left; FLOAT: left; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 1em; MARGIN-RIGHT: 1em" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zJtzZndbf6o/T5cqhossnDI/AAAAAAAAAa0/_vV-7JF_Jlc/s1600/78401290.JPG" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zJtzZndbf6o/T5cqhossnDI/AAAAAAAAAa0/_vV-7JF_Jlc/s1600/78401290.JPG"><IMG height=200 src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zJtzZndbf6o/T5cqhossnDI/AAAAAAAAAa0/_vV-7JF_Jlc/s200/78401290.JPG" width=200 border=0 _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-zJtzZndbf6o/T5cqhossnDI/AAAAAAAAAa0/_vV-7JF_Jlc/s200/78401290.JPG"></A><BR _mce_bogus="1"></DIV> <P>Who knew the answer to solving a problem and changing poor behavior would be...forgiveness.<BR>Wendy Ulrich shares an important and life changing lesson she learned while seeking forgiveness from her young son.<BR></P> <P><IFRAME src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/U0LH9PB8MNw" frameBorder=0 width=640 height=480 _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/U0LH9PB8MNw" allowfullscreen=""></IFRAME></P> Growing Into Motherhood http://www.tofw.com/Growing-Into-Motherhood-DeAnne-Flynn/s/546 http://www.tofw.com/Growing-Into-Motherhood-DeAnne-Flynn/s/546 Mon, 23 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1cS7nwEzypI/T4h_aixTkVI/AAAAAAAAGcQ/NP2BRKpaxtw/s1600/feet+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1cS7nwEzypI/T4h_aixTkVI/AAAAAAAAGcQ/NP2BRKpaxtw/s1600/feet+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1cS7nwEzypI/T4h_aixTkVI/AAAAAAAAGcQ/NP2BRKpaxtw/s640/feet+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1cS7nwEzypI/T4h_aixTkVI/AAAAAAAAGcQ/NP2BRKpaxtw/s640/feet+hero.jpg" border="0" height="432" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QutPnlooOkI/T4h6o4wH3sI/AAAAAAAAGb4/RZDU-HIE86o/s1600/Growing+into+motherhood+1+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QutPnlooOkI/T4h6o4wH3sI/AAAAAAAAGb4/RZDU-HIE86o/s1600/Growing+into+motherhood+1+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QutPnlooOkI/T4h6o4wH3sI/AAAAAAAAGb4/RZDU-HIE86o/s200/Growing+into+motherhood+1+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QutPnlooOkI/T4h6o4wH3sI/AAAAAAAAGb4/RZDU-HIE86o/s200/Growing+into+motherhood+1+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" border="0" height="200" width="150"></a>I love spring. <br><br> It’s a magical season of transformation and renewal - not only for the earth, but also for each one of <em>us</em>. <br><br>This spring, I received an unexpected and inspiring gift - a beautiful, bright yellow daffodil sprouting through the center of my front lawn. <br><br>At first I didn’t recognize this peculiarly planted flower as a tender mercy. Yet as I began to notice the extraordinary affect it was having on all who graced my path, those blooms seemed anything but accidental. <br><br>Upon seeing this flower, my front door visitors often chuckle, quickly surmising that an unsuspecting bulb must have been inadvertently moved from a flowerbed to that innovative spot prior to winter snow. <br><br>Curious admirers have marveled how this outwardly delicate plant ever managed to press through the thick, dark sod when it felt the instinctive drive to grow and become literally <em>reborn</em> after weathering the cold. <br><br>Sound like a metaphor-in-the-making? <br><br>Well, if you’re anything like this brave daffodil, there have been countless times when you’ve felt alone or displaced - times when you’ve stood tall instead of blending in, when you’ve struggled to emerge victorious through a seemingly insurmountable barrier, or when you’ve discovered that you’re suddenly WAY outside of your comfort zone. <br><br>Personally, this flower is a striking symbol of my own motherhood. <br><br>In fact, I’ve never felt more out of place than I did after giving birth to my first child. <br><br></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-sD2EnSgFD4o/T4h603ujEPI/AAAAAAAAGcA/JTsQkK6i-c8/s1600/Growing+into+motherhood+2+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-sD2EnSgFD4o/T4h603ujEPI/AAAAAAAAGcA/JTsQkK6i-c8/s1600/Growing+into+motherhood+2+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-sD2EnSgFD4o/T4h603ujEPI/AAAAAAAAGcA/JTsQkK6i-c8/s400/Growing+into+motherhood+2+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-sD2EnSgFD4o/T4h603ujEPI/AAAAAAAAGcA/JTsQkK6i-c8/s400/Growing+into+motherhood+2+%28DeAnne+Flynn%29.jpg" border="0" height="333" width="479"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> Now it’s important for you to understand that I had dreamed, planned, and prepared to become a mother ever since I was an embryo. (Or, in keeping with our metaphor, ever since I was a <em>tiny seed</em> or <em>bud-of-a-girl</em>.) <br><br>Motherhood was that for which I’d hoped, prayed, yearned, and even babysat free-of-charge on multiple occasions – just for the sheer “experience” of it all! <br><br>But when I was actually <em>at home</em>, with a <em>colicky baby</em>, recovering from a C-Section, away from my career, my friends, and the fast-paced lifestyle I had created – I found myself to be unexpectedly out of my element. <br><br>Feeling oh so insecure and alone, I wondered how I could ever possibly blossom into the mother I had always imagined I would become. <br><br> Everyone else seemed to be thriving. <br><br>What was wrong with me? <br><br>Was I reaping what I had sown? <br><br>After MANY hours on my knees in earnest prayer, and after daily nourishing my faith, testimony, and my young son with patience and love – even when I didn’t feel completely natural while doing it – slowly, steadily, <em>instinctively</em>, something inside of me began to change. <br><br>I began to be transformed. <br><br>My mother-heart began to blossom! <br><br>And as I learned to push through my occasional dark feelings – like that daffodil pushing through the thick, heavy sod on my front lawn – I was, and still am, repeatedly renewed by heaven-sent, revitalizing light. <br><br> I now recognize and truly appreciate my God-given mission. I really do. </p><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gwgl6yqYkvQ/T4h7O2wJHNI/AAAAAAAAGcI/P6z1kvWEp0M/s1600/flynns+at+conf.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gwgl6yqYkvQ/T4h7O2wJHNI/AAAAAAAAGcI/P6z1kvWEp0M/s1600/flynns+at+conf.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gwgl6yqYkvQ/T4h7O2wJHNI/AAAAAAAAGcI/P6z1kvWEp0M/s640/flynns+at+conf.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gwgl6yqYkvQ/T4h7O2wJHNI/AAAAAAAAGcI/P6z1kvWEp0M/s640/flynns+at+conf.jpg" border="0" height="420" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> And I can genuinely say that I love being the mother of children. (Even though I’ll forever be cultivating refinement in my stewardship.) <br><br>Without question, the Master Gardner sees each of us perfectly - sometimes struggling to fulfill the measure of our creation, occasionally feeling as though we are destined for something far different than our present setting here on earth, perhaps wishing for something less stressful, more exciting, and much, much simpler. <br><br>But when we nourish those <em>skills</em> that will help us to bloom and thrive… <br><br>We can then “arise and shine forth.” <br><br>WHEREVER we are planted.<br><br><br><br></p> VIDEO: Angry? That's Okay. http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Angry-Thats-Okay-Julie%20-de%20Azevedo%20Hanks/s/542 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Angry-Thats-Okay-Julie%20-de%20Azevedo%20Hanks/s/542 Wed, 18 Apr 2012 08:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div _mce_style="clear: both;" class="separator" style="clear: both;"><span class="Apple-style-span" style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="color: #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">As one of the NEW presenters at TOFW this year, Julie de Azevedo Hanks shares what it means to be our AUTHENTIC SELF...which is to let yourself have FEELINGS...even if at times that might be "angry" feelings.&nbsp;</span></div><div _mce_style="clear: both;" class="separator" style="clear: both;"><span class="Apple-style-span" style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; " _mce_style="color: #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;"><br id="__mce"></span></div> <iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/v96zPjXQr-g" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/v96zPjXQr-g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> It's Temporary http://www.tofw.com/Its-Temporary-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/541 http://www.tofw.com/Its-Temporary-D%20Kelly-Ogden/s/541 Tue, 17 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-AVFTwbfw_w4/T4z37Sg6EcI/AAAAAAAAGew/gr1qrpTB6Qk/s1600/temp+1.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-AVFTwbfw_w4/T4z37Sg6EcI/AAAAAAAAGew/gr1qrpTB6Qk/s1600/temp+1.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-AVFTwbfw_w4/T4z37Sg6EcI/AAAAAAAAGew/gr1qrpTB6Qk/s640/temp+1.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-AVFTwbfw_w4/T4z37Sg6EcI/AAAAAAAAGew/gr1qrpTB6Qk/s640/temp+1.jpg" border="0" height="424" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-SSURj7K56QM/T4z4mHQnwhI/AAAAAAAAGfA/iPJLrJzX78c/s1600/temp+snip.JPG" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-SSURj7K56QM/T4z4mHQnwhI/AAAAAAAAGfA/iPJLrJzX78c/s1600/temp+snip.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-SSURj7K56QM/T4z4mHQnwhI/AAAAAAAAGfA/iPJLrJzX78c/s320/temp+snip.JPG" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-SSURj7K56QM/T4z4mHQnwhI/AAAAAAAAGfA/iPJLrJzX78c/s320/temp+snip.JPG" border="0" height="320" width="293"></a>Lately I have a new perspective on mortal ailments and weaknesses . . . they are all temporary! <span id="goog_1048287188"></span><span id="goog_1048287189"></span><br><br>I very seldom use the word “hate” because I feel it’s such a strong word, but I do hate drilling in my teeth. I hate shots in my mouth, and I hate teeth falling out while eating (“I lost my crown” is bad enough literally, but symbolically it would be infinitely worse!). <br><br>The Lord said to the Prophet Joseph Smith, “thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment” (Doctrine and Covenants 121:7), and He also repeatedly said “what I say unto one I say unto all” (Doctrine and Covenants 61:18, 36; 82:5; 93:49). So that means me, too: my afflictions will last only a “small moment.” <br><br>So, for this small moment of mortal probation, in which God uses an incredible variety of methods to shake us up, to jolt us, and keep us humble by putting us through our own custom-made crucibles, don’t you think it’s good for us to keep the perspective of “they’re only temporary”? <br><br>The Lord also hinted to Joseph Smith, “if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes” (Doctrine and Covenants 121:8). Again, He’s saying that to you and me, too. In a sense the all-wise God of Heaven is saying to every one of His children, “Look, you’re going to endure it . . . so you might as well endure it well!” Then we will triumph over all our foes, including all those pesky physical and emotional ailments and afflictions. <br><br>These things that are so temporary have everlasting repercussions. The nuisances of ailments and the pains of afflictions do play their role in our long-term objective: happiness both in this world and in the world to come. <br><br></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nj5IZWhodCw/T4z6T6j1bdI/AAAAAAAAGfI/W8TAQihxEeA/s1600/happy+peeps.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nj5IZWhodCw/T4z6T6j1bdI/AAAAAAAAGfI/W8TAQihxEeA/s1600/happy+peeps.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nj5IZWhodCw/T4z6T6j1bdI/AAAAAAAAGfI/W8TAQihxEeA/s400/happy+peeps.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nj5IZWhodCw/T4z6T6j1bdI/AAAAAAAAGfI/W8TAQihxEeA/s400/happy+peeps.jpg" border="0" height="257" width="400"></a>I recall some years ago when we lived in a country on the other side of the world, where little beasties proliferate throughout the year and have a way of invading our private home-space. We called in a fumigator, and while he did his exterminating work, he struck up a conversation with my wife. I overheard one remark he made: “Oh yes, Mormons . . . you’re the people who don’t have any fun!” <br><br>The fumigator’s comment provoked me to reflect: Are we “having fun” yet? Shouldn’t Latter-day Saints—at least those who know and live the gospel—be among the happiest people in the world? For sure. Those who live up to the eternal truths we believe are definitely happy. And when each painful ordeal strikes, as they inevitably will, we endure it with our unique perspective: “It’s all very temporary.”<br><br><br><br></div> Tarantulas & American Idol http://www.tofw.com/Tarantulas-American-Idol-Carmen-Rasmusen%20Herbert/s/540 http://www.tofw.com/Tarantulas-American-Idol-Carmen-Rasmusen%20Herbert/s/540 Tue, 17 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <p>I remember a feeling of pure terror. Knowing what I was going to face and knowing that there was no way I was going to back down, made my teeth chatter and my body shake with fear. I had never done anything like this. 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font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} --></mce:style><mce:style _mce_bogus="1"><!-- /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} --></mce:style><mce:style _mce_bogus="1"><!-- /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} --></mce:style><style _mce_bogus="1"><!-- /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} --></style> <!--[endif]----> </p><p class="MsoNormal"><img alt="188" src="../../../images/stories/general/188.jpg?1334696283" _mce_src="../../../images/stories/general/188.jpg?1334696283" width="675" height="448" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"></p><p class="MsoNormal">I remember a feeling of pure terror.</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> Knowing what I was going to face and knowing that there was no way I was going to back down, made my teeth chatter and my body shake with fear. I had never done anything like this. Who had? <span style="color:#1F497D" _mce_style="color: #1f497d;"></span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:11.0pt;color:#1F497D" _mce_style="font-size: 11.0pt; color: #1f497d;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal">Then I heard the countdown.</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> “In five…four…three…two…one…GO!”</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> At the age seventeen, I did what only one in about 100,000 had done. I tried out for the number one television show in America, and made it into the Top Six of <i>American Idol</i>, Season 2 before being eliminated. I stood up in front of millions of viewers and shakily sang my heart out to try and win over voters and three judges. It was thrilling to be a part of this, but it was also extremely challenging. I was exposed to so many worldly things: drugs, alcohol, immorality, inappropriate movies and music, you name it; every dark thing was there right in front of me.</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> People often ask “How did you do it, Carmen? Were you ever afraid?”</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> The honest answer is, YES. </p> <p class="MsoNormal">But I had help from heaven.</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> My parents were wonderful examples to me of how to call upon Heavenly Father for protection and guidance. I, like Nephi was “born of goodly parents” who raised me up in righteousness and I prayed for strength and guidance. I didn’t exactly know where this experience would take me, but I knew that millions of people were watching and I was determined to live the standards I had been taught and do my best to be an example.<span style="color:red" _mce_style="color: red;"></span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> I learned something profound from my American Idol experience, something that I still look back on with wonder; something that strengthens my testimony every time I think about it. It is this: when I make a commitment to serve the Lord and live righteously, He encircles me about in the arms of His love. With that love comes a protection that is unlike anything in this world, a protection I truly yearn for. </p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> One of my favorite scriptures is D&amp;C 68:6. It reads: “Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you.”</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> I always try to live my life in a way that invites the Holy Ghost to be my constant companion, yet there have been many times in my life when I’ve been tempted to give in to my fears. <br> <br> It seems rather ironic that someone who had such a hard time facing her fears on a reality show would voluntarily agree to appear on another one that promotes it. I’m talking about <i>the </i>ultimate show in frightful entertainment: <i>Fear Factor</i>.</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> As I listened to that final countdown from Joe Rogan, host of <i>Fear Factor</i> and felt the rickety old sled which I lay handcuffed and body-chained in being wheeled slowly down a rickety old tunnel in which five, ten, twenty huge tarantulas awaited me, I felt myself mentally step it up a notch. </p> <p class="MsoNormal"><i><br> I am in a tunnel, </i>I thought. <i>I am going to be buried in spiders the size of my fist. They will most likely try to harm me. But it won’t be for long. I’m strong. I can do this. People are watching. I can’t chicken out.</i></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> As it turns out, my partner wasn’t able to find the final key to unlock the track my sled was on to wheel me back in to safety. I was in that dark tunnel facing my worst fear for twenty-five minutes. They had to stop filming and have a safety crew wheel me back in. Because I was so terrified a spider might try to climb into my mouth while I was stuck lying at the back of the tunnel, I pressed my mouth shut so hard, I damaged a nerve in my bottom lip. </p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> But I was okay. I survived. Even days later when the painful hairs from the tarantula were still stuck in my skin and the sting from their bites made me feel ill, I felt a sense of accomplishment. I thought if I could do that, I could do anything!</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> Since then, I’ve had to rely on the Lord many times for His help. So far, I haven’t come close to anything quite as traumatizing as having huge spiders thrown on my face. But there are times when I’ve thought, “I am in the dark here. I may have to face another of my greatest fears. There may be people out to harm me.” But I know it won’t be for long. I am strong with the Lord by side. I “fear not what man”-(or insect)-“can do, for God shall be with [me].” (D&amp;C 122:9). </p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> I know that when I firmly put my faith in Him, I am blessed with strength beyond my own. “And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.” (Luke 1:50.) </p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> Despite my troubles and worries, I always try to remember: </p> <p class="MsoNormal"><br> God is the only one I really need to fear. &nbsp; &nbsp;</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><img alt="189" src="http://www.tofw.com/images/stories/general/189.jpg?1334765565" _mce_src="../../../images/stories/general/189.jpg?1334765565" width="172" height="172"></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;" _mce_style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;">At the age of seventeen, Carmen achieved instant fame and notoriety when she became a finalist on Fox's 2003 "American Idol." She made it into the final six before being eliminated. Carmen has appeared on numerous talk shows including, Today, Good Morning America, Tyra Banks, Late Night with David Letterman, and many others. Carmen and her husband, Bradley, are the parents of three energetic boys and live in Lehi, Utah.</span></p> Creative Exchange {DIY Link Party} http://www.tofw.com/Creative-Exchange-DIY-Link-Party-TOFW/s/544 http://www.tofw.com/Creative-Exchange-DIY-Link-Party-TOFW/s/544 Fri, 13 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7rh52gtYprY/T4dY31i11sI/AAAAAAAAGbg/ZbAfo8aD7gc/s1600/hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7rh52gtYprY/T4dY31i11sI/AAAAAAAAGbg/ZbAfo8aD7gc/s1600/hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7rh52gtYprY/T4dY31i11sI/AAAAAAAAGbg/ZbAfo8aD7gc/s640/hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7rh52gtYprY/T4dY31i11sI/AAAAAAAAGbg/ZbAfo8aD7gc/s640/hero.jpg" border="0" height="444" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;"><em>Whether it is preparing a meal, designing something to display in your home, or creating meaningful experiences for others, we create in large and small ways every single day. We want to hear how YOU are Seeking the Good by sharing your unique gifts, so blog about something YOU created and join our April Link Party (instructions below)!&nbsp; But first, here is a little inspiration from President Uchtdorf to spark your creativity.<br><br></em><b><iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/RhLlnq5yY7k?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/RhLlnq5yY7k?rel=0" frameborder="0" height="360" width="640"></iframe> </b><i><br><br></i><b></b><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;">Here's how to participate in TOFW's April Link Party:</span></b> <br></p><div style="text-align: center; text-indent: 0.25in; margin-bottom: 12pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 12pt; text-indent: 0.25in; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;"><br></span></div><div style="text-align: left; margin-left: 15pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 15pt; text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;">1.<b> SHARE something that YOU have created on your blog.&nbsp; </b>This could be a poem you wrote, a picture you took, your own DIY ("do it yourself") project, or ANYTHING else you have created. <br></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;"><br>2. Make sure you<b> include a link back to this story</b> on TOFW.com. Just copy and paste the code in the text box below in your HTML editor.</span></div><div style="float: left; margin: 0pt 0pt 0pt 200px;" _mce_style="float: left; margin: 0 0 0 200px;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="http://tofw.com/story/544-creative-exchange-diy-link-party" _mce_href="../../../story/544-creative-exchange-diy-link-party"><img src="http://tofw.com/images/tofw_badge1.jpg" _mce_src="../../../images/tofw_badge1.jpg" alt="TOFW"></a><br><br><textarea cols="30" rows="6">&lt;a href="http://tofw.com/story/544-creative-exchange-diy-link-party" _mce_href="../../../story/544-creative-exchange-diy-link-party" &gt;&lt;img alt="TOFW" src="http://tofw.com/images/tofw_badge1.jpg" _mce_src="../../../images/tofw_badge1.jpg"&gt;&lt;/a&gt;</textarea></div><div style="clear: both;" _mce_style="clear: both;"></div><div style="text-align: left; margin-left: 15pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 15pt; text-align: left;"><br></div><div style="text-align: left; margin-left: 15pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 15pt; text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;">3. Click on the text below that says <b>"Click here to enter"</b> and fill out the information (your name, the address of your post, and a thumbnail image of what you shared). Your thumbnail will display below and will direct everyone who clicks on it back to your blog.</span></div><div style="text-align: left; margin-left: 15pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 15pt; text-align: left;"><br></div> <div style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> </div><p> <span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; font-size: 12pt;">We can't wait to see how creaive you can be! Please let your friends know about the party--everyone is invited and we want as many women as possible to see your great ideas!<br></span></p><p><br><mce:script _mce_src="http://www.linkytools.com/thumbnail_linky_include.aspx?id=140554" type="text/javascript"></mce:script></p> 94 Shares http://www.tofw.com/94-Shares-Hilary-Weeks/s/533 http://www.tofw.com/94-Shares-Hilary-Weeks/s/533 Mon, 09 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yk8XXJQ-53A/T39ialOIPGI/AAAAAAAAGXU/b1aWID-oRus/s1600/share+hero+3.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yk8XXJQ-53A/T39ialOIPGI/AAAAAAAAGXU/b1aWID-oRus/s1600/share+hero+3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yk8XXJQ-53A/T39ialOIPGI/AAAAAAAAGXU/b1aWID-oRus/s640/share+hero+3.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yk8XXJQ-53A/T39ialOIPGI/AAAAAAAAGXU/b1aWID-oRus/s640/share+hero+3.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lTxp_B13p64/T39bgzhFlxI/AAAAAAAAGWk/7Rw1MXcpN2Y/s1600/share+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lTxp_B13p64/T39bgzhFlxI/AAAAAAAAGWk/7Rw1MXcpN2Y/s1600/share+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> 94 shares. <br><br>I'm not referring to stock. <br><br> Facebook shares.&nbsp; You know - when someone reads your Facebook post and they like it enough to share it on <i>their </i>Facebook page with <i>their </i>friends. <br><br>I recently posted this:&nbsp; <br><br></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-N67KchkOr78/T39hK8euriI/AAAAAAAAGXM/U2ZgMifv5u4/s1600/94+shares+clear.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-N67KchkOr78/T39hK8euriI/AAAAAAAAGXM/U2ZgMifv5u4/s1600/94+shares+clear.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-N67KchkOr78/T39hK8euriI/AAAAAAAAGXM/U2ZgMifv5u4/s640/94+shares+clear.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-N67KchkOr78/T39hK8euriI/AAAAAAAAGXM/U2ZgMifv5u4/s640/94+shares+clear.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>...and my post got 94 shares.&nbsp; <br><br>That is a record for me.&nbsp; (Not that I keep track - I don't.&nbsp; More accurately, it caught my attention because I was surprised by how many people seemed to connect with this message.) <br><br>What is it about this quote? <br><br>I happened to post it on a day when I was feeling a discouraged.&nbsp; I posted it because I personally needed the reminder that </div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <br>...I am not a quitter, giver-upper, walk-awayer person (even when things are hard) <br>...I am willing to face challenges <br>...the climb, the effort, is worth it and I will eventually reach the top <br>...every step matters - and with each step I'm closer to my goal <br>...my efforts yesterday made a difference - so I will try again today <br>...great accomplishments often require great sacrifice <br>...this is about who I am becoming<br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: left;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: left;"> In his General Conference address, "<a href="http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2000/10/the-challenge-to-become?lang=eng&amp;query=challenge+become" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2000/10/the-challenge-to-become?lang=eng&amp;query=challenge+become">The Challenge to Become</a>," Elder Dallin H. Oaks teaches us that "most of us experience some measure of what the scriptures call the 'furnace of affliction.'&nbsp; Our needed conversions are often achieved more readily by suffering and adversity than by comfort and tranquility." <br><br> Like the man climbing the stairs in the picture.&nbsp; Every muscle engaged.&nbsp; Hard work and perhaps even fatigue manifest in a soaked shirt.&nbsp; There's no way to tell how many more stairs he has to climb or how close he is to the top - because we can't see the top. <br><br>Elder Oaks assures, "Through the justice and mercy of a loving Father in Heaven, the refinement and sanctification possible through such experiences can help us achieve what God desires us to become."&nbsp; <br><br>Father Lehi promised Jacob that God would "consecrate [his] afflictions for [his] gain." (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/2-ne/2.2?lang=eng#1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/2-ne/2.2?lang=eng#1">2 Nephi 2:2</a>) <br><br>The prophet Joseph was promised that "thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; and then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high."&nbsp; (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/121.7-8?lang=eng#6" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/121.7-8?lang=eng#6">D&amp;C 121:7-8</a>) <br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-76edTpmU3Uo/T39fLfrma_I/AAAAAAAAGXE/O7tS-Kdqp4A/s1600/happy+climber.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-76edTpmU3Uo/T39fLfrma_I/AAAAAAAAGXE/O7tS-Kdqp4A/s1600/happy+climber.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-76edTpmU3Uo/T39fLfrma_I/AAAAAAAAGXE/O7tS-Kdqp4A/s400/happy+climber.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-76edTpmU3Uo/T39fLfrma_I/AAAAAAAAGXE/O7tS-Kdqp4A/s400/happy+climber.jpg" border="0" height="265" width="400"></a>The climb is important.&nbsp; Finishing is important.&nbsp; Reaching the top is important. <br><br>But it isn't as much about reaching the top as it is about <br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <b>who will have become by the time you reach the top.<br><br></b></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> Keep climbing. <br><br>You are closer than you were yesterday. </div> An Easter Declaration http://www.tofw.com/Easter-Declaration-TOFW/s/532 http://www.tofw.com/Easter-Declaration-TOFW/s/532 Fri, 06 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-YCBDXTD3N5A/T34g2lFfekI/AAAAAAAAGWc/lwN3BDwqLzQ/s1600/Easter%2Bhero.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-YCBDXTD3N5A/T34g2lFfekI/AAAAAAAAGWc/lwN3BDwqLzQ/s1600/Easter%2Bhero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-YCBDXTD3N5A/T34g2lFfekI/AAAAAAAAGWc/lwN3BDwqLzQ/s640/Easter%2Bhero.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-YCBDXTD3N5A/T34g2lFfekI/AAAAAAAAGWc/lwN3BDwqLzQ/s640/Easter%2Bhero.jpg" border="0" height="428" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> As Easter approaches, our thoughts are turned to our Savior, Jesus Christ.&nbsp; We hope you enjoy this beautiful video as a reminder or His life, His teachings, and His sacrifice for each one of us.&nbsp; We invite you to ponder what the Atonement and Resurrection of Jesus Christ mean to you personally.<br><br><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/oXrOG02NMB0?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/oXrOG02NMB0?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="360" width="640"></iframe> <br><br>See more Easter videos and testimonies of Christ at <a _mce_href="http://easter.imamormon.org/" href="http://easter.imamormon.org/">Mormon.org</a><br><br>What experiences in your life have strengthened your faith in Christ?<br><br> Share your thoughts below. <br></p> Conference As A Prophet's Daughter http://www.tofw.com/Conference-Prophets-Daughter-Virginia-H%20Pearce/s/521 http://www.tofw.com/Conference-Prophets-Daughter-Virginia-H%20Pearce/s/521 Wed, 04 Apr 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2p5T7Gjl24U/T3x9U2UpsRI/AAAAAAAAGU0/wJBeXDdkn6s/s1600/President%2Band%2BSister%2BHinckley.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2p5T7Gjl24U/T3x9U2UpsRI/AAAAAAAAGU0/wJBeXDdkn6s/s1600/President%2Band%2BSister%2BHinckley.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2p5T7Gjl24U/T3x9U2UpsRI/AAAAAAAAGU0/wJBeXDdkn6s/s640/President%2Band%2BSister%2BHinckley.jpg" width="640" height="384" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2p5T7Gjl24U/T3x9U2UpsRI/AAAAAAAAGU0/wJBeXDdkn6s/s640/President%2Band%2BSister%2BHinckley.jpg"></a></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gW9ZcfooZWo/T3tLsDnRefI/AAAAAAAAGUg/qTJjnoMLxxE/s1600/young+ginny.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gW9ZcfooZWo/T3tLsDnRefI/AAAAAAAAGUg/qTJjnoMLxxE/s1600/young+ginny.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gW9ZcfooZWo/T3tLsDnRefI/AAAAAAAAGUg/qTJjnoMLxxE/s320/young+ginny.jpg" width="320" height="225" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gW9ZcfooZWo/T3tLsDnRefI/AAAAAAAAGUg/qTJjnoMLxxE/s320/young+ginny.jpg"></a>Sunday morning in April of 1958, Mother got the five of us out of bed and said,&nbsp; “I think we should go down to the Tabernacle for Conference.”&nbsp; We’d never done that, but it sounded fine to me.&nbsp; I don’t remember thinking it was strange—or stranger still that we were all going and Dad wasn’t with us.&nbsp; But then, how clueless is a thirteen year old about what’s going on in the family?! <br><br>So off we went, only to get to the doors and find that there were no more seats.&nbsp; And you know how those ushers are—there’s no getting around them!&nbsp; So Mother promptly said, “Let’s just go back to the car and we’ll drive to Grandma’s and watch it with her.”&nbsp; <br><br>As we were walking back through the block, we met one of the members of the First Presidency going toward the Tabernacle.&nbsp; He stopped and said to say hello to Mother.&nbsp; As he shook her hand, he said,&nbsp; “Well, it’s a big day for you.&nbsp; Where are you going?”&nbsp; <br><br>Sure, I thought.&nbsp; It<i> is</i> a big day.&nbsp; It’s General Conference.&nbsp; <br><br>She told him that we had been over to the Tabernacle and hadn’t been able to get a seat and he said, “Come with me.”&nbsp; We all turned around and sailed right through a door and seats magically appeared.&nbsp; Pretty neat. <br><br><span id="goog_1744755911"></span><span id="goog_1744755912"></span></div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-lbjmia0-e8g/T3tLlM6-yBI/AAAAAAAAGUY/UtsyylxJ-q0/s1600/tabernacle.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-lbjmia0-e8g/T3tLlM6-yBI/AAAAAAAAGUY/UtsyylxJ-q0/s1600/tabernacle.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-lbjmia0-e8g/T3tLlM6-yBI/AAAAAAAAGUY/UtsyylxJ-q0/s400/tabernacle.jpg" width="400" height="247" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-lbjmia0-e8g/T3tLlM6-yBI/AAAAAAAAGUY/UtsyylxJ-q0/s400/tabernacle.jpg"></a> I loved it.&nbsp; I loved the curvy bench and the poles that were painted to look like marble.&nbsp; I loved the organ pipes and the way the balcony wrapped around the interior of the building.&nbsp; But most of all I loved that feeling of all being together in a place where important things were about to happen.&nbsp; Everyone else, it seemed, was happy to be there, too. <br><br>The organ gave way to the choir and the choir gave way to the sustaining of the General Authorities and General Officers of the Church.&nbsp; And then the name of “Gordon B. Hinckley” as an Assistant to the Twelve, was presented for a sustaining vote.&nbsp; We all wheeled in unison to look at Mother, who simply smiled back.&nbsp; <br><br>Hmm.&nbsp; So that’s why we came to Conference.&nbsp; So that’s why it was “a big day for us.”&nbsp;&nbsp; So that’s why seats had magically appeared. <br><br>At that moment, General Conferences in April and October became even more than they had been in the past for our family.&nbsp; They took on the proportions of Christmas and the Fourth of July to create the rhythm of the calendar.&nbsp; First you have Christmas, then you were getting ready for Conference, then you have the Fourth of July and then Conference again.&nbsp; We always seemed to be heading into something exciting.&nbsp; <br><br>Conference became more than a weekend event.&nbsp; We saw Dad starting to worry, work on talks, and prepare for meetings during the weeks preceding Conference.&nbsp; Mother did grocery shopping and made food preparations ahead so that everything would be easy.&nbsp; There were extra meetings the week before and the week after.&nbsp; People from afar were coming to town, often gathering at our home on Sunday afternoon after the last session of conference.&nbsp;&nbsp; Lots of hugging.&nbsp; Lots of togetherness. <br><br><span id="goog_1744755902"></span><span id="goog_1744755903"></span></div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nCrbzV4xFKw/T3tGgTFjPPI/AAAAAAAAGUI/2I5ijmhPaIg/s1600/generations.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nCrbzV4xFKw/T3tGgTFjPPI/AAAAAAAAGUI/2I5ijmhPaIg/s1600/generations.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nCrbzV4xFKw/T3tGgTFjPPI/AAAAAAAAGUI/2I5ijmhPaIg/s1600/generations.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nCrbzV4xFKw/T3tGgTFjPPI/AAAAAAAAGUI/2I5ijmhPaIg/s1600/generations.jpg"></a>In fact, during my adult years when my own little family lived away from Salt Lake my homesickness always peaked during Conference weekend.&nbsp; I could do Christmas and summer away from family, but watching Conference on television hundreds of miles away from Salt Lake City simply tore a little hole in my heart. <br><br>That’s not to say that I don’t love curling up on my sofa with a snack nearby to feast upon the Word in the comfort of my own home.&nbsp; I don’t need to be in the Conference Center, but I’m glad I’ve been there.&nbsp; I’m glad I’ve felt the excitement that hovers over that block as my brothers and sisters from all over the world come together to hear counsel and comfort from His anointed servants.&nbsp; It’s called “gathering” and it’s pretty good stuff.&nbsp; And if I had a magic wand I would make sure every one of the 13 million of us could be here—at least once.&nbsp; But, when you get it streaming into your computer and the camera shows all of the people converging on the building in the center of Zion, would you just imagine yourself right there in the middle of it all.&nbsp; Because you are, you know.&nbsp; Gathering isn’t just a physical thing.&nbsp; It’s a gathering of hearts and hopes.&nbsp; Of faith and righteous desires.&nbsp; Of love and testimony. <br><br>Welcome to <a href="http://www.lds.org/general-conference?lang=eng" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/general-conference?lang=eng">General Conference</a>, 2012.&nbsp; It’s good to be gathered together with every single one of you!<br><br><br><br></div> VIDEO: Do I Have Charity? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Do-Have-Charity-Anthony-Sweat/s/529 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Do-Have-Charity-Anthony-Sweat/s/529 Mon, 02 Apr 2012 16:41:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-L6adHSUdo1k/T3ormLtSyRI/AAAAAAAAGSM/b0GZZAuzdEY/s1600/charity%2Btall.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-L6adHSUdo1k/T3ormLtSyRI/AAAAAAAAGSM/b0GZZAuzdEY/s1600/charity%2Btall.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-L6adHSUdo1k/T3ormLtSyRI/AAAAAAAAGSM/b0GZZAuzdEY/s200/charity%2Btall.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-L6adHSUdo1k/T3ormLtSyRI/AAAAAAAAGSM/b0GZZAuzdEY/s200/charity%2Btall.jpg" border="0" height="200" width="142"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">How would you define Charity? Is it an act? An emotion? An attribute? Is it something you do or something you are? Listen as TOFW presenter Anthony Sweat shares some insights about the pure love of Christ and some indicators you can watch for to know that charity is operating in your life.</div> <p></p><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/xXI0RiyvZVM?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/xXI0RiyvZVM?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe></p> Mormon Taking the Lead on BROADWAY http://www.tofw.com/Mormon-Taking-Lead-BROADWAY-Sandra-Turley/s/525 http://www.tofw.com/Mormon-Taking-Lead-BROADWAY-Sandra-Turley/s/525 Mon, 02 Apr 2012 15:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;" align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"><tbody> <tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8HHeZ96lcd4/T3SQ9huYxMI/AAAAAAAAGQs/E_WLwqJxjbI/s1600/broadway+hero+2.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8HHeZ96lcd4/T3SQ9huYxMI/AAAAAAAAGQs/E_WLwqJxjbI/s1600/broadway+hero+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8HHeZ96lcd4/T3SQ9huYxMI/AAAAAAAAGQs/E_WLwqJxjbI/s640/broadway+hero+2.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8HHeZ96lcd4/T3SQ9huYxMI/AAAAAAAAGQs/E_WLwqJxjbI/s640/broadway+hero+2.jpg" border="0" height="384" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></td></tr> <tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;">Photo courtesy of Joan Marcus</td></tr> </tbody></table> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JJQNxS8yf60/T3SROu_NI6I/AAAAAAAAGQ0/j_7_xNK7TyI/s1600/Sandra+Turley.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JJQNxS8yf60/T3SROu_NI6I/AAAAAAAAGQ0/j_7_xNK7TyI/s1600/Sandra+Turley.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><br><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JJQNxS8yf60/T3SROu_NI6I/AAAAAAAAGQ0/j_7_xNK7TyI/s320/Sandra+Turley.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JJQNxS8yf60/T3SROu_NI6I/AAAAAAAAGQ0/j_7_xNK7TyI/s320/Sandra+Turley.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="213"></a><br>Warning: New girl on the blog!&nbsp; I come in peace.&nbsp; (How else would i come, really?)&nbsp; Allow me to introduce myself... <br><br>My name is Sandra Turley.&nbsp; I am a wife, a mother of 3, a constant thinker, a late-blooming reader, an over-organizer, a teenager in a 33 year old body, a pinterest aficionada and…oh yah, a happily retired Broadway actress who is excited to be speaking at <a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/tofg" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/tofg">Time Out for Girls</a> this year.&nbsp; <br><br>My maiden name is Dudley.&nbsp; Sandra Dudley.&nbsp; Yep.&nbsp; Sandra D.&nbsp; Just like in <i>Grease</i>!&nbsp; My whole pre-married life, friends would sing to me: “Look at me, I’m Sandra D” (you know how it goes).&nbsp;&nbsp; <br><br>When I was 19, I took a year off of school and was hired at Disney World to spend my days singing as the Little Mermaid.&nbsp; All of my nights were free, so when I heard about an upcoming production of <i>Grease</i> I decided to audition.&nbsp; I was offered the lead – Sandra D was going to play Sandra D! I made it clear to the director that I would accept the part <i>only</i> if I was not asked to smoke or drink on stage.&nbsp; He agreed.&nbsp; <br><br>The first day of rehearsals came and the director oddly started off by blocking (<i>fancy word for telling the actors where they are going to stand</i>) the last scene of the show.&nbsp; Immediately he called me to the stage, told me where to stand and informed me that I would then have a “fake cigarette” in my hand.&nbsp; “No big deal” he said, “It’s not real – you just put it in your mouth, inhale and then blow out, but it’s all safe.”&nbsp; I looked at him blankly.&nbsp; Really?&nbsp; We had talked about this already.&nbsp; Was this his solution?&nbsp; I quickly found the right opportunity to speak privately with him.&nbsp; We walked to the back of the theater and I nervously reminded him of our agreement.&nbsp; He then looked at me sternly, and in so many words said: “You’re fired.” <br><span id="goog_425083283"></span><span id="goog_425083284"></span></div>&nbsp; <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-5G_ADfu39b8/T3STPJp4PDI/AAAAAAAAGRc/IsjCKE0-gGw/s1600/sandra+square.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-5G_ADfu39b8/T3STPJp4PDI/AAAAAAAAGRc/IsjCKE0-gGw/s1600/sandra+square.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-5G_ADfu39b8/T3STPJp4PDI/AAAAAAAAGRc/IsjCKE0-gGw/s320/sandra+square.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-5G_ADfu39b8/T3STPJp4PDI/AAAAAAAAGRc/IsjCKE0-gGw/s320/sandra+square.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="320"></a>I left the theater in a state of <i>did-that-really-just-happen</i>?!?&nbsp; I had stood up for what I believed, but still, I was fired!&nbsp;&nbsp; <br><br> <span id="goog_425083273"></span><span id="goog_425083274"></span>Most of my theater “friends” who heard about the situation made fun of me or assumed I just couldn’t cut it in the business.&nbsp; At first I felt hurt – but ultimately, I was strengthened.&nbsp; <br><br>Paul taught this to the Romans and it is surely applicable today: <i> <br><br>"And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God</i>" (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/rom/12.2?lang=eng#1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/rom/12.2?lang=eng#1">Romans 12:2</a>). <br><br>There is no need for us peculiar people* to conform to the world.&nbsp; Yes, we must take the goodness of the world and enjoy it, but we need not conform to that which is not the good, acceptable and perfect will of God.&nbsp; Rather, we should allow ourselves to be transformed by renewing our commitment to the Lord and to the truthfulness of His gospel. <br><br>I introduced myself up front as a happily retired Broadway actress. My years on Broadway were difficult, rewarding, defining and transformative.&nbsp; I have the most wonderful memories to hold close to my heart.&nbsp; Though I claim early retirement from “the business,” I will never retire from singing, sharing the stories I love and using the talents Heavenly Father has given me to spread the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.&nbsp; For <i>His</i> is the best news about which to be singing. <br><br>*<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/deut/14.2?lang=eng#1" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/deut/14.2?lang=eng#1">Deut 14:2<br><br></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;" align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"><tbody> <tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2SNnW62zQgQ/T3SSaFARohI/AAAAAAAAGQ8/-F48-1Dnp4g/s1600/turley+family.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2SNnW62zQgQ/T3SSaFARohI/AAAAAAAAGQ8/-F48-1Dnp4g/s1600/turley+family.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2SNnW62zQgQ/T3SSaFARohI/AAAAAAAAGQ8/-F48-1Dnp4g/s640/turley+family.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2SNnW62zQgQ/T3SSaFARohI/AAAAAAAAGQ8/-F48-1Dnp4g/s640/turley+family.jpg" border="0" height="420" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></td></tr> <tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;">Turley family</td></tr> </tbody></table> VIDEO: Unfulfilled Expectations http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Unfulfilled-Expectations-Camille-Fronk-Olson/s/512 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Unfulfilled-Expectations-Camille-Fronk-Olson/s/512 Fri, 23 Mar 2012 00:03:00 -0600 <div> by Camille Fronk Olson <br /> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UPjSw1PMCuQ/T2yZnD7pDsI/AAAAAAAAGOU/dRMp7z_reyg/s1600/2012+tote+bag.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UPjSw1PMCuQ/T2yZnD7pDsI/AAAAAAAAGOU/dRMp7z_reyg/s1600/2012+tote+bag.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UPjSw1PMCuQ/T2yZnD7pDsI/AAAAAAAAGOU/dRMp7z_reyg/s400/2012+tote+bag.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UPjSw1PMCuQ/T2yZnD7pDsI/AAAAAAAAGOU/dRMp7z_reyg/s400/2012+tote+bag.jpg" border="0" width="232" height="310"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> Ever noticed the many stories of women in the Bible who were “barren"? Was infertility just common long ago or is it possible barrenness represents something else? Listen as Time Out for Women Presenter Camille Fronk Olson shares what she believes is the symbolism behind so many Bible stories and what the message is for us today.</div> </div><p> </p><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/SYZ0P0Y_0ac?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/SYZ0P0Y_0ac?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p><p><br>WIN a <a _mce_href="../../../story/421-its-here-the-new-2012-totebag" href="../../../story/421-its-here-the-new-2012-totebag">TOFW Tote</a>!&nbsp; Visit the Time Out for Women Facebook page <a _mce_href="http://www.facebook.com/TimeOutForWomen" href="http://www.facebook.com/TimeOutForWomen">HERE</a>, share the story from our post and you are entered to win.&nbsp; One WINNER(maybe 2) will be chosen and announced TODAY on Facebook at 5pm MT. <br></p><p>Congratulations to our winners: Becki S. &amp; Jennifer B.<br><br></p> VIDEO: A Blessing in Disguise http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Blessing-Disguise-Abe-Mills%20of%20Jericho%20Road/s/516 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Blessing-Disguise-Abe-Mills%20of%20Jericho%20Road/s/516 Thu, 22 Mar 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5M-tC50eBQQ/T2try7pN3zI/AAAAAAAAGOM/_GjlSFSeTQ4/s1600/child+is+born.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5M-tC50eBQQ/T2try7pN3zI/AAAAAAAAGOM/_GjlSFSeTQ4/s1600/child+is+born.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5M-tC50eBQQ/T2try7pN3zI/AAAAAAAAGOM/_GjlSFSeTQ4/s320/child+is+born.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5M-tC50eBQQ/T2try7pN3zI/AAAAAAAAGOM/_GjlSFSeTQ4/s320/child+is+born.jpg" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;" width="320" border="0" height="213"></span></a><span style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">Have you ever faced a difficult situation only to later find out that it saved you from an even greater pain?&nbsp; Abe Mills from Jericho Road shares a personal experience that at first glance appeared to be a tragedy, but was ultimately a blessing that saved his son’s life.</span></div><p><br></p><div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1pFMgf-0N9o?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1pFMgf-0N9o?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p> Making Sense of It All http://www.tofw.com/Making-Sense-All-Wendy-Ulrich/s/505 http://www.tofw.com/Making-Sense-All-Wendy-Ulrich/s/505 Wed, 21 Mar 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-TvRQgt3LxlY/T2e8wYc8plI/AAAAAAAAGNc/OteW_BUuOGI/s1600/old+and+young+2.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-TvRQgt3LxlY/T2e8wYc8plI/AAAAAAAAGNc/OteW_BUuOGI/s1600/old+and+young+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-TvRQgt3LxlY/T2e8wYc8plI/AAAAAAAAGNc/OteW_BUuOGI/s640/old+and+young+2.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-TvRQgt3LxlY/T2e8wYc8plI/AAAAAAAAGNc/OteW_BUuOGI/s640/old+and+young+2.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> I’m not at all sure how a person, even at age 88, goes from walking around without a single medical problem except Alzheimer’s to breaking a hip to dying – all in 72 hours – but that is what happened to my mother in January. Given her 13-year decline with the disease that also took her mother and two older brothers, we can only count it as a great blessing that she was able to find this escape hatch and dive down it so resolutely, but it still feels like a mystery to me. I will miss her, but I suspect she does not miss living in a world that no longer made sense, surrounded by people she no longer recognized, in a body that no longer felt like home. </p><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hlm4knDDjxA/T2e9BlT_IDI/AAAAAAAAGNs/SK-OAJGs2mQ/s1600/mother+daughter+5.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hlm4knDDjxA/T2e9BlT_IDI/AAAAAAAAGNs/SK-OAJGs2mQ/s1600/mother+daughter+5.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hlm4knDDjxA/T2e9BlT_IDI/AAAAAAAAGNs/SK-OAJGs2mQ/s320/mother+daughter+5.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hlm4knDDjxA/T2e9BlT_IDI/AAAAAAAAGNs/SK-OAJGs2mQ/s320/mother+daughter+5.jpg" border="0" height="262" width="395"></a>For most of her declining years I chafed against an almost constant, nagging guilt for not visiting her more or doing more for her. But crying all the way home every time I did was something I could only handle so much of and still function in the rest of my life, so I guess I chose guilt over wailing and hoped for the best. I tried hard to learn from her experience, hoping it was not me holding her back from her much-anticipated reunion with the mother and brothers she loved, the father who died in her infancy, the husband who preceded her. But I hated her situation too much to be very good at being philosophical about it. <br><br>Frankly I just couldn’t make sense out of why she was still here. The things that define my sense of myself – praying, serving, producing, learning, connecting with family and friends – were all lost to her.&nbsp; She could no longer write her name, compose a prayer of more than four words, answer a question, make any decision. Awful. Only at her funeral and in the days since have I started to understand my mother’s life differently. It began as I realized from her eulogy that my mother never defined herself, as I tend to, by products or achievements or to-do lists. Her world was about smiling at strangers, walking the dog, playing with children, joking with acquaintances, caring for the underdog, and appreciating beauty and goodness in the world. These are things I am not at all good at, but they are the things her grandchildren remember her for, things she held onto until the very end. The last thing I saw my mother do before her fatal fall was smile a huge greeting to the new woman moving into her care facility, patting her kindly on the shoulder. Mom was her own little one-woman welcoming committee. I think she honestly thought that was why she was there. And I guess she had that right. <br><br></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-u0A9pmYRvdQ/T2e9RshtvyI/AAAAAAAAGN8/m9AKNB2KqiE/s1600/mother+daughter+3.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-u0A9pmYRvdQ/T2e9RshtvyI/AAAAAAAAGN8/m9AKNB2KqiE/s1600/mother+daughter+3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-u0A9pmYRvdQ/T2e9RshtvyI/AAAAAAAAGN8/m9AKNB2KqiE/s320/mother+daughter+3.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-u0A9pmYRvdQ/T2e9RshtvyI/AAAAAAAAGN8/m9AKNB2KqiE/s320/mother+daughter+3.jpg" border="0" height="213" width="320"></a>I may have been miserable about my mother’s disease, but she was just fine. She had the courage, stamina, faith, and attitude to make her life work even when her brain did not, and I have no question but that she managed all of that far better than I will. <br><br>Sometimes, just when we think we are strong, we realize there are other kinds of strength we know little about, other ways of living that give people skills for meeting challenges we would fold beneath. My mother could no longer write her name, but I have no question that it is written in the Book of Life.</div> Remodeling 101 http://www.tofw.com/Remodeling-101-Brooke-Stone%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/513 http://www.tofw.com/Remodeling-101-Brooke-Stone%20of%20Mercy%20River/s/513 Thu, 15 Mar 2012 00:02:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-omZYqDKVGlg/T2FB9aSzh8I/AAAAAAAAGL8/T0MNGNNdwKU/s1600/brooke+before.JPG" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-omZYqDKVGlg/T2FB9aSzh8I/AAAAAAAAGL8/T0MNGNNdwKU/s1600/brooke+before.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-omZYqDKVGlg/T2FB9aSzh8I/AAAAAAAAGL8/T0MNGNNdwKU/s640/brooke+before.JPG" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-omZYqDKVGlg/T2FB9aSzh8I/AAAAAAAAGL8/T0MNGNNdwKU/s640/brooke+before.JPG" border="0" width="640" height="478"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><br></div>This year my husband and I had the opportunity to do some remodeling in our kitchen. It’s our first “big” remodel in our home, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I mean, I’ve seen dozens of design and remodeling shows on TV, so I could totally pull this off, right? The hosts of those afore mentioned programs are always warning the viewers to “expect the unexpected”, and “plan on it not going exactly as planned.” But I just KNEW my situation would be smooth sailing. I would schedule each company within a couple days of each other, and yes, I would have to live in chaos for a couple weeks, but after that? Bliss.<br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-PkwHeHsgB38/T2FDnkwiabI/AAAAAAAAGMM/Rt-yy5nq4ZI/s1600/measure.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-PkwHeHsgB38/T2FDnkwiabI/AAAAAAAAGMM/Rt-yy5nq4ZI/s1600/measure.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-PkwHeHsgB38/T2FDnkwiabI/AAAAAAAAGMM/Rt-yy5nq4ZI/s400/measure.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-PkwHeHsgB38/T2FDnkwiabI/AAAAAAAAGMM/Rt-yy5nq4ZI/s400/measure.jpg" border="0" width="290" height="192"></a>But then things started to go wrong-the countertop company’s measurements were off and had to re-cut the material. The appliances were backordered for a month. My husband, (bless his heart) got a little excited and sold our old appliances a little early...as in 3 weeks too early, leaving me with no appliances during the month of December.The tile company took longer than expected. The painters were a couple days late. I could keep going but I’ll stop there.<br><br></div></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>How could this happen? I made a PLAN! I had it organized! I had it arranged it so perfectly! I did everything I could to prepare myself for the 2 weeks of chaos! (Which ended up being about 8 weeks.) I had been warned by professionals that it may not go perfectly, I was just naive enough to believe it wouldn’t happen to ME.<br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> And then I had the thought-I think this happens in life. A lot. We make a plan to have a perfect marriage, we do everything we can to have righteous and obedient children, we work harder than any other employee in our company, we eat healthy and exercise, and then it happens. Marriage isn’t coming our way, we suffer with infertility, spouses leave, kids fall away from the Gospel and everything we've taught them, we’re let go from our job, sickness and disease strike. Despite the planning and work we may have put into it, sometimes things just don’t turn out exactly as we expected. And maybe that’s because we’re relying on OUR plan, and not THE plan. There is a plan for us that is greater than anything we could expect. And although I know we are blessed for the work and effort we put into our lives, there may be other blessings that we need-ones we haven’t thought of. There may be traits we’re lacking when it comes to being more like Christ. And the only way we’ll recognize them is through those disruptions in our plan.<br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;" _mce_style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"><tbody> <tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Fy36jFjdBqA/T2FCEgIWMhI/AAAAAAAAGME/_4KG7AngxaY/s1600/brooke+after.JPG" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Fy36jFjdBqA/T2FCEgIWMhI/AAAAAAAAGME/_4KG7AngxaY/s1600/brooke+after.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Fy36jFjdBqA/T2FCEgIWMhI/AAAAAAAAGME/_4KG7AngxaY/s400/brooke+after.JPG" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Fy36jFjdBqA/T2FCEgIWMhI/AAAAAAAAGME/_4KG7AngxaY/s400/brooke+after.JPG" border="0" width="319" height="215"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></td></tr> <tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;">The finished product! <br>What do you think?</td></tr> </tbody></table> So what did I learn from my kitchen experience? I learned to trust those decorating shows. I learned that traditions can come out of any situation. (We have now scheduled a “breakfast picnic” in the front room for every December 15th.) I’ve learned to never take an oven for granted. And I’ve felt humble gratitude numerous times for the blessings that I have. And in the end, my kitchen turned out better than I expected. I have faith in knowing that with our Savior’s help, and with a bit of hard work and endurance, we’ll be able to look back on ourselves and see that we too, turned out better than we expected.</div> VIDEO: The Danger of Treading Water http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Danger-Treading-Water-Emily-Watts/s/509 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Danger-Treading-Water-Emily-Watts/s/509 Wed, 14 Mar 2012 08:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: left;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-eo_Vg_2mVls/T1-jFQC4o4I/AAAAAAAAGLM/xUpH7VRoqN0/s1600/pool.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-eo_Vg_2mVls/T1-jFQC4o4I/AAAAAAAAGLM/xUpH7VRoqN0/s1600/pool.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-eo_Vg_2mVls/T1-jFQC4o4I/AAAAAAAAGLM/xUpH7VRoqN0/s320/pool.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-eo_Vg_2mVls/T1-jFQC4o4I/AAAAAAAAGLM/xUpH7VRoqN0/s320/pool.jpg" border="0" width="246" height="160"></a>There’s not much room for growth and progression inside your comfort zone. In fact, it can get pretty crowded in there! So why not step outside to the opportunities that await you? Listen as Time Out for Women Presenter Emily Watts shares an invitation that will help you stretch beyond your boundaries and discover new possibilities. </div><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/cGz2syraFFE?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/cGz2syraFFE?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p> Aloha! http://www.tofw.com/Aloha-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/501 http://www.tofw.com/Aloha-Mary%20Ellen-Edmunds/s/501 Mon, 12 Mar 2012 00:00:00 -0600 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-prVzR2nwhG0/T1plKKk2NBI/AAAAAAAAGJE/mUl81J9sl4A/s1600/aloha+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-prVzR2nwhG0/T1plKKk2NBI/AAAAAAAAGJE/mUl81J9sl4A/s1600/aloha+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-prVzR2nwhG0/T1plKKk2NBI/AAAAAAAAGJE/mUl81J9sl4A/s640/aloha+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-prVzR2nwhG0/T1plKKk2NBI/AAAAAAAAGJE/mUl81J9sl4A/s640/aloha+hero.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="424"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> Have you ever been to Hawaii?&nbsp; It’s one place that really looks like the pictures, paintings, and posters.&nbsp; <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> Even if you haven’t been there, have you ever known someone who would begin a lesson or talk with the word “Aloha!,” inviting everyone to respond?&nbsp; Sister Chieko Okazaki used to do this, and it was like a “magnet” that brought everyone together.&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>I’ve had a chance to go to Hawaii several times, and I really enjoy the “spirit of Aloha” which is there.&nbsp; <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_QEMTPqrQsE/T1pnIMMbyMI/AAAAAAAAGJM/guqeeuSV1iw/s1600/hawiian.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_QEMTPqrQsE/T1pnIMMbyMI/AAAAAAAAGJM/guqeeuSV1iw/s1600/hawiian.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_QEMTPqrQsE/T1pnIMMbyMI/AAAAAAAAGJM/guqeeuSV1iw/s320/hawiian.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_QEMTPqrQsE/T1pnIMMbyMI/AAAAAAAAGJM/guqeeuSV1iw/s320/hawiian.jpg" border="0" width="199" height="299"></a>There is a custom in some of the LDS Wards where, after Sacrament meeting, any who are leaving the islands are invited to come to the front, and the audience sings the tender farewell song, “Aloha Oe,” in Hawaiian.&nbsp; <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> This has happened to me a few times, and I haven’t been able to avoid the emotion of it, the tears.&nbsp; Some of this is because I’ve noticed that many of those who are singing are weeping.&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>I asked my friends Audrey and Jerry why this happens, and they said that when they sing they’re thinking of their ancestors, their loved ones.&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> I found a translation of the words, written by Queen Lili`uokalani [10 extra points if you can pronounce her beautiful name].&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>One verse shares these thoughts:&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <i><br>Sweet memories come back to me </i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <i>Bringing fresh remembrances of the past </i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <i>Dearest one, yes, you are mine own </i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <i>From you, true love shall never depart</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br><br>No wonder this fond farewell often brings tears to those who sing it and to those who hear it.&nbsp; “One fond embrace until we meet again.”&nbsp; <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UqL2TNke3SY/T1pn4v8DbmI/AAAAAAAAGJU/YURcgQaU1ls/s1600/aloha+girl.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UqL2TNke3SY/T1pn4v8DbmI/AAAAAAAAGJU/YURcgQaU1ls/s1600/aloha+girl.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UqL2TNke3SY/T1pn4v8DbmI/AAAAAAAAGJU/YURcgQaU1ls/s320/aloha+girl.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-UqL2TNke3SY/T1pn4v8DbmI/AAAAAAAAGJU/YURcgQaU1ls/s320/aloha+girl.jpg" border="0" width="320" height="228"></a>Hawaiians believe that words have deep meanings, and “Aloha” is one of the most sacred and powerful.&nbsp; It’s a word not to be trivialized by using it carelessly or without sincerity.&nbsp; It is to be used only if we truly feel “Aloha” within our hearts.<br><br> </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> Elder John H. Groberg loves this word, stating that it is the spirit of the gospel.&nbsp; In a message he gave, he pleaded that the people not lose “the soul-saving qualities as commonly encompassed in the word ‘Aloha.’&nbsp; Don’t let frustration or cynicism or materialism or sin canker your soul and rob you of the life-giving joy of service.”&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> (Alf Pratte, “News of the Church,” Ensign, Aug. 1978, 76)<br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> While in English the word “Aloha” is used to say hello and goodbye, in the Hawaiian language it’s more than a word of greeting or farewell.&nbsp; It encompasses love, affection, sympathy, compassion, mercy, pity, kindness, and grace.&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>Maybe we could say that “Aloha never faileth.”&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>The “Aloha Spirit” is so important in Hawaii that it’s even part of state law.&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>The statute reminds Hawaii’s people that the “Aloha Spirit” is to be shared. <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CAduTJQiTXk/T1poBGCo_SI/AAAAAAAAGJc/qzR9GydP2OA/s1600/aloha+square.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CAduTJQiTXk/T1poBGCo_SI/AAAAAAAAGJc/qzR9GydP2OA/s1600/aloha+square.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CAduTJQiTXk/T1poBGCo_SI/AAAAAAAAGJc/qzR9GydP2OA/s320/aloha+square.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CAduTJQiTXk/T1poBGCo_SI/AAAAAAAAGJc/qzR9GydP2OA/s320/aloha+square.jpg" border="0" width="247" height="247"></a>“Aloha” includes hearing what is not said, seeing what cannot be seen, and knowing that which cannot be known. </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>Imagine living by such beautiful thoughts, such beautiful words.&nbsp; Doesn’t it remind you of a Christ-like way of living and being?&nbsp; That’s what it has done and continues to do for me.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>“Aloha” is something that must be experienced in order to be understood.&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>How about giving it a try?&nbsp; </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <br>Even with my still limited experience and understanding, I really mean it when I send to each of you a warm “ALOHA!”&nbsp; <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> I think I can hear you responding; MAHALO!&nbsp; (Thank you!)&nbsp; We’ll talk about that word another time.&nbsp;</div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div> Albuquerque 2012 TOFW Event DVD http://www.tofw.com/Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-DVD-TOFW/s/515 http://www.tofw.com/Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-DVD-TOFW/s/515 Sat, 10 Mar 2012 12:57:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div class="txt" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s1600/IDF+DVD.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s1600/IDF+DVD.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s400/IDF+DVD.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s400/IDF+DVD.jpg" border="0" height="400" width="256"></a></span></div> <div class="txt"> <b>Now available for <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079617" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079617">purchase</a> only thru Mon, March 26th!</b> <br><br>You can relive your Albuquerque TIME OUT experience (or if you missed it, now is your chance to see it!). This <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079617" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079617">2-disc</a> set contains full length presentations and music from the following: <br><br><li>Mariama Kallon </li> <li>DeAnne Flynn </li> <li>Anthony Sweat </li> <li>Wendy Ulrich </li> <li>Laurel Christensen </li> <li>Heidi Swinton </li> <li>Dean Hughes</li></div><div class="txt"> …and select music from Hilary Weeks &amp; Jenny Oaks Baker <br><br>Continue to <i>SEEK THE GOOD</i> in your own life…and in the comfort of your own home! <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079617" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Albuquerque-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079617"><br><br>**Click here to order your Albuquerque TOFW Event DVD </a></div><div class="txt"><br></div><div class="txt"><br></div><div class="txt"><br></div><div class="txt"><br></div><div class="txt"><br></div> </div> Idaho Falls 2012 Event DVD http://www.tofw.com/Idaho-Falls-2012-Event-DVD-TOFW/s/514 http://www.tofw.com/Idaho-Falls-2012-Event-DVD-TOFW/s/514 Sat, 10 Mar 2012 12:05:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div class="txt" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s1600/IDF+DVD.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s1600/IDF+DVD.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s400/IDF+DVD.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pmgMrnp42UI/T2jGEi0_UTI/AAAAAAAAGOE/bgRFBIocgKE/s400/IDF+DVD.jpg" border="0" height="400" width="256"></a></span></div> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><b>Now available for <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Idaho-Falls-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079618" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Idaho-Falls-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079618">purchase</a> only thru Mon, March 26th!</b></span> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> <br><br>You can relive your Idaho Falls TIME OUT experience (or if you missed it, now is your chance to see it!). This <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Idaho-Falls-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079618" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Idaho-Falls-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079618">2-disc</a> set contains full length presentations and music from the following: </span> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span><br><br> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">Mary Ellen Edmunds </span></li> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">Emily Watts </span></li> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">D. Kelly Ogden </span></li> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">Merrilee Boyack </span></li> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">Emily Freeman </span></li> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">John Bytheway </span></li> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <li><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">Virginia H. Pearce</span></li></div><div class="txt" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> …and select music from Jericho Road <br><br></span> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> Continue to <i>SEEK THE GOOD </i>in your own life…and in the comfort of your own home! <br><br>**<a href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Idaho-Falls-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079618" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Seek-Good-Idaho-Falls-2012-TOFW-Event-Time-Out-Women/i/5079618">Click here to order your Idaho Falls TOFW Event DVD</a></span></div><div class="txt" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div class="txt" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div class="txt" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><br></span></div> Contest Winner {March Link Party} http://www.tofw.com/Contest-Winner-March-Link-Party-TOFW/s/502 http://www.tofw.com/Contest-Winner-March-Link-Party-TOFW/s/502 Fri, 09 Mar 2012 13:30:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HEKrHkPzxU4/T1qRYfV5foI/AAAAAAAAGKU/qwUgbxv_LGU/s1600/share+march+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HEKrHkPzxU4/T1qRYfV5foI/AAAAAAAAGKU/qwUgbxv_LGU/s1600/share+march+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HEKrHkPzxU4/T1qRYfV5foI/AAAAAAAAGKU/qwUgbxv_LGU/s640/share+march+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HEKrHkPzxU4/T1qRYfV5foI/AAAAAAAAGKU/qwUgbxv_LGU/s640/share+march+hero.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="426"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NSlm4GLCwNk/T1qRLhC-kqI/AAAAAAAAGKM/FyRY2hqeu8s/s1600/bites.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NSlm4GLCwNk/T1qRLhC-kqI/AAAAAAAAGKM/FyRY2hqeu8s/s1600/bites.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"> </a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> And the winner of our <a href="http://tofw.com/story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party" _mce_href="../../story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party">March Link Party</a> is....<br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://sbswemily.blogspot.com/2012/03/sharing-love.html" _mce_href="http://sbswemily.blogspot.com/2012/03/sharing-love.html">Southwest by Southwest</a> blogger, Emily N.<br><br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NSlm4GLCwNk/T1qRLhC-kqI/AAAAAAAAGKM/FyRY2hqeu8s/s1600/bites.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NSlm4GLCwNk/T1qRLhC-kqI/AAAAAAAAGKM/FyRY2hqeu8s/s1600/bites.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NSlm4GLCwNk/T1qRLhC-kqI/AAAAAAAAGKM/FyRY2hqeu8s/s320/bites.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NSlm4GLCwNk/T1qRLhC-kqI/AAAAAAAAGKM/FyRY2hqeu8s/s320/bites.jpg" border="0" width="249" height="237"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> Congratulations, Emily! We will be sending you your very own copy of <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Our-Best-Bites-Mormon-Moms-Kitchen-Sara-Wells/i/5053191" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Our-Best-Bites-Mormon-Moms-Kitchen-Sara-Wells/i/5053191">Our Best Bites: Mormon Moms in the Kitchen</a>.<br><br></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <span _mce_style="font-size: large;" style="font-size: medium;">Thank you to everyone who participated! We enjoyed seeing <a href="http://tofw.com/story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party" _mce_href="../../story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party">What Brings YOU Joy</a>. <br><br></span> <span _mce_style="font-size: large;" style="font-size: medium;"> </span> <span _mce_style="font-size: large;" style="font-size: medium;"> Join us at TOFW.com on Friday, April 13th for our next Link Party.</span></div><div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><br></div><div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><span _mce_style="font-size: large;" style="font-size: medium;"><br></span></div> Winner Announced: Mercy River's Contest Giveaway http://www.tofw.com/Winner-Announced-Mercy-Rivers-Contest-Giveaway-TOFW/s/494 http://www.tofw.com/Winner-Announced-Mercy-Rivers-Contest-Giveaway-TOFW/s/494 Thu, 08 Mar 2012 11:02:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_c73eUqKRB8/T1D6t1AXggI/AAAAAAAAGF0/rWmLmdaxWEs/s1600/mr+contest+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_c73eUqKRB8/T1D6t1AXggI/AAAAAAAAGF0/rWmLmdaxWEs/s1600/mr+contest+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_c73eUqKRB8/T1D6t1AXggI/AAAAAAAAGF0/rWmLmdaxWEs/s640/mr+contest+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-_c73eUqKRB8/T1D6t1AXggI/AAAAAAAAGF0/rWmLmdaxWEs/s640/mr+contest+hero.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="430"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IkLbojJUdPk/T1D7knbU6fI/AAAAAAAAGF8/gzrSFp9F0sM/s1600/higher+for+blog.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-IkLbojJUdPk/T1D7knbU6fI/AAAAAAAAGF8/gzrSFp9F0sM/s1600/higher+for+blog.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> TOFW is giving away copies of Mercy River's new album, <em><a href="http://deseretbook.com/Higher-Mercy-River/i/5071446" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Higher-Mercy-River/i/5071446">Higher</a></em>, all week! Check back daily for contest details and to find out if YOU are a winner! <b> <br></b></p><p><br></p><p><strong>Congratulations to all of our contest winners! Each will receive an autographed copy of <em><a href="http://deseretbook.com/Higher-Mercy-River/i/5071446" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Higher-Mercy-River/i/5071446">Higher</a></em>.</strong><br><br><br></p><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WvN5vfq7x9s/T1D7sdyuR3I/AAAAAAAAGGE/raT5Bed354s/s1600/higher+for+blog.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WvN5vfq7x9s/T1D7sdyuR3I/AAAAAAAAGGE/raT5Bed354s/s1600/higher+for+blog.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WvN5vfq7x9s/T1D7sdyuR3I/AAAAAAAAGGE/raT5Bed354s/s200/higher+for+blog.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WvN5vfq7x9s/T1D7sdyuR3I/AAAAAAAAGGE/raT5Bed354s/s200/higher+for+blog.jpg" border="0" width="160" height="142"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> Listen to samples from <em><a href="http://deseretbook.com/Higher-Mercy-River/i/5071446" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Higher-Mercy-River/i/5071446">Higher</a> </em><b><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>PREVIOUS CONTEST &amp; WINNERS:</b> <br><br>DAY 1:&nbsp; Leave a comment below <a href="http://tofw.com/story/489-from-sobbing-to-shrink-wrapped-the-making-of-higher" _mce_href="../../story/489-from-sobbing-to-shrink-wrapped-the-making-of-higher">Whitney's blog post</a>. <br>Winner: Danielle P.<br><br>DAY 2: Visit our <a href="http://www.facebook.com/#%21/TimeOutForWomen" _mce_href="http://www.facebook.com/#%21/TimeOutForWomen">TOFW facebook page</a> to tell us how many children you think the Mercy River girls have. (The correct answer is 13!)<br>Winner: Leontyne H.<br><br>DAY 3: Tell us your favorite Mercy River Song.<br>Winner: Darla A. (I Will Be Ready Then)<br><br>DAY 4: How many years has Mercy River been performing with Time Out for Women?<br>Answer: 4 years (2008, 2010, 2011, and 2012)<br>Winner: Tiffany D.<br><br>DAY 5: What are Soni, Brooke &amp; Whitney's secret talents?<br>Answer: Soni can drive with her knees, Whitney can flare her nostrils and Brooke can touch her nose with her tongue! Learn more fun trivia about Mercy River by visiting their blog, <a _mce_href="http://www.mercyrivermusic.blogspot.com/" href="http://www.mercyrivermusic.blogspot.com/">Mercy River Musings</a>.<br>Winner: Bobbye H.<br></p> Sharing My Family Secrets {Link Party} http://www.tofw.com/Sharing-My-Family-Secrets-Link-Party-Macy-Robison/s/482 http://www.tofw.com/Sharing-My-Family-Secrets-Link-Party-Macy-Robison/s/482 Thu, 08 Mar 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nAAHP8vZiMk/T1AMlQpDR3I/AAAAAAAAGFk/lANzi_e29pA/s1600/pumpkin+hero.JPG" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nAAHP8vZiMk/T1AMlQpDR3I/AAAAAAAAGFk/lANzi_e29pA/s1600/pumpkin+hero.JPG"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nAAHP8vZiMk/T1AMlQpDR3I/AAAAAAAAGFk/lANzi_e29pA/s640/pumpkin+hero.JPG" width="640" height="426" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nAAHP8vZiMk/T1AMlQpDR3I/AAAAAAAAGFk/lANzi_e29pA/s640/pumpkin+hero.JPG"></a></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">I have a friend who does a blog series each Sunday where she posts photos and recipes of their family's favorite foods. The subject of a recent Sunday post was cinnamon rolls. Photo after photo of gorgeous, icing-covered, gooey cinnamon rolls. I was hungry. The rolls looked delicious. I WANTED this recipe. As I eagerly scrolled down to check out the recipe for these beautiful creations, I was horrified to read this sentence:</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4wzV1JI8VTA/T1ANyXqu2kI/AAAAAAAAGFs/C0MuRUAQRGE/s1600/recipe+box.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4wzV1JI8VTA/T1ANyXqu2kI/AAAAAAAAGFs/C0MuRUAQRGE/s1600/recipe+box.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4wzV1JI8VTA/T1ANyXqu2kI/AAAAAAAAGFs/C0MuRUAQRGE/s320/recipe+box.jpg" width="320" height="227" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4wzV1JI8VTA/T1ANyXqu2kI/AAAAAAAAGFs/C0MuRUAQRGE/s320/recipe+box.jpg"></a><i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span></i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">"I promised to never share this recipe so I'm not going to post it, but these cinnamon rolls are a family favorite that we all enjoy!" </span></i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">First, I was crushed. I wanted that recipe!</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>Then, I was annoyed. Why had she posted all of those pictures, and gotten me so excited about cinnamon rolls, and then specifically not shared the recipe?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>So, I called her. Without even saying hello, I greeted her with: "You know you just broke the cardinal rule of food blogging, right? Posting gorgeous pictures of delicious food and not sharing the recipe?!"</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>She went on to explain that she and her aunt had worked hard to develop the recipe, and that her aunt doesn't share recipes.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_-9Z6UjxUDU/T1E3Hi4OLqI/AAAAAAAAGGk/BDEfnA7X6L8/s1600/caramel.JPG" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_-9Z6UjxUDU/T1E3Hi4OLqI/AAAAAAAAGGk/BDEfnA7X6L8/s1600/caramel.JPG"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_-9Z6UjxUDU/T1E3Hi4OLqI/AAAAAAAAGGk/BDEfnA7X6L8/s320/caramel.JPG" width="320" height="212" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_-9Z6UjxUDU/T1E3Hi4OLqI/AAAAAAAAGGk/BDEfnA7X6L8/s320/caramel.JPG"></a><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>Doesn't share recipes? Who doesn't share recipes?!?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">And then I remembered a time when I didn't want to share a recipe.</span><br> <br> I have a recipe for my mom's pumpkin cookies. They're amazing. The cookie is light and cake-like, and they are topped with a yummy caramel frosting. My little cookies developed quite a following among my friends. And then the day came when someone asked me for the recipe.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a style="clear: left; margin-right: 1em; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JgNGCNUGe5U/T1E3NpI5VYI/AAAAAAAAGGs/nKOcln1pOjM/s1600/cookies+2.JPG" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JgNGCNUGe5U/T1E3NpI5VYI/AAAAAAAAGGs/nKOcln1pOjM/s1600/cookies+2.JPG"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JgNGCNUGe5U/T1E3NpI5VYI/AAAAAAAAGGs/nKOcln1pOjM/s400/cookies+2.JPG" width="400" height="265" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JgNGCNUGe5U/T1E3NpI5VYI/AAAAAAAAGGs/nKOcln1pOjM/s400/cookies+2.JPG"></a><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Now, normally, I'm a recipe-sharer (The more good food in the world, the better!). But in this case, I was surprised to find I didn't want to share the cookie recipe with <i>anyone</i>. They were MY cookies. People came to ME for those cookies. I wanted to be the ONLY SOURCE of the cookies. Besides, what if I gave the recipe to someone and they ruined the cookies? What if they messed up the frosting, or, heaven forbid, changed the recipe and did something completely crazy like put chocolate chips in them?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> <div style="text-align: left; clear: both;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Then I came to a grand realization - a recipe is only a pattern. What made my cookies MY cookies was <i>me</i>. No one was going to make the cookies exactly the same way I did.&nbsp; Even if I gave them all the little tricks I've developed to make the cookies turn out the same way every time - they still wouldn't be exactly like <i>my</i> cookies. So, if the recipe would make someone else happy, I should share the recipe.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>So, I did.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xxWoadhJ5Qc/UAbzeswaY9I/AAAAAAAAAn4/OHRfGptNmd8/s1600/quotes+boys.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xxWoadhJ5Qc/UAbzeswaY9I/AAAAAAAAAn4/OHRfGptNmd8/s1600/quotes+boys.jpg"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xxWoadhJ5Qc/UAbzeswaY9I/AAAAAAAAAn4/OHRfGptNmd8/s320/quotes+boys.jpg" width="203" height="320" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xxWoadhJ5Qc/UAbzeswaY9I/AAAAAAAAAn4/OHRfGptNmd8/s320/quotes+boys.jpg"></a></div> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Sharing something doesn't mean that I lose what I've shared. Even if it is something I have worked hard on. If anything, what I share will be magnified. If something makes us happy, it might make someone else happy, so we should share it. </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>Recipes. Jokes. Favorite songs. Art. Sewing tips. Insights. The Gospel. </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">In honor of sharing, I'm sharing my pumpkin cookie recipe with you (and you can even add chocolate chips if you want. I've heard it's a delicious substitution). Visit <a href="http://www.macyrobisonphotography.com/blog/2012/03/05/meant-to-be-shared/" _mce_href="http://www.macyrobisonphotography.com/blog/2012/03/05/meant-to-be-shared/">my blog</a> for the recipe.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">What will you share today? </span><span style='color: black; font-family: "Tahoma","sans-serif"; font-size: 10pt;' _mce_style='color: black; font-family: "Tahoma","sans-serif"; font-size: 10pt;'></span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br>Do you love finding &amp; sharing fabulous new ideas, projects, and products? &nbsp;If so, join our March Link Party &amp; share something YOU LOVE and be entered to win <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Our-Best-Bites-Mormon-Moms-Kitchen-Sara-Wells/i/5053191" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Our-Best-Bites-Mormon-Moms-Kitchen-Sara-Wells/i/5053191">Our Best Bites</a> cookbook!</span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> The winner will be announced this Friday.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-h9-AAoXUr94/TzQAVPoK4DI/AAAAAAAAF3I/E0NlM_x42wk/s1600/hearts.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-h9-AAoXUr94/TzQAVPoK4DI/AAAAAAAAF3I/E0NlM_x42wk/s1600/hearts.jpg"> </a></div> <div style="text-align: center;" class="MsoNormal" align="center" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> <span style='color: blue; font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt; text-decoration: none;' _mce_style='color: blue; font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt; text-decoration: none;'> </span></div> <div style="text-align: center; text-indent: 0.25in; margin-bottom: 12pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 12pt; text-indent: 0.25in; text-align: center;"> <b><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;' _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'>Here's how to participate:</span></b> <span style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;' _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'><br></span></div> <div style="text-align: left; margin-left: 15pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 15pt; text-align: left;"> <span style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;' _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'>1.<b> SHARE something that makes you happy on your blog.&nbsp; </b>As Macy suggested, this could be recipes, jokes, favorite songs, art, sewing tips, insight, the Gospel, or ANYTHING else that brings you joy. </span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;' _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'><br>2. Make sure your post<b> includes a link back to this story</b> on TOFW.com. Just copy and paste the code in the text box below in your HTML editor. </span></div> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br> <div style="margin: 0px 0px 0px 200px; float: left;" _mce_style="float: left; margin: 0 0 0 200px;"> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="http://tofw.com/story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party" _mce_href="../../../story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party"><img alt="TOFW" src="http://tofw.com/images/tofw_badge1.jpg" _mce_src="../../../images/tofw_badge1.jpg"></a><br> <br> <textarea cols="30" rows="6">&lt;a href="http://tofw.com/story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party" _mce_href="../../../story/482-sharing-my-family-secrets-link-party" &gt;&lt;img alt="TOFW" src="http://tofw.com/images/tofw_badge1.jpg" _mce_src="../../../images/tofw_badge1.jpg"&gt;&lt;/a&gt;</textarea></div> <div style="clear: both;" _mce_style="clear: both;"> &nbsp;</div> <div style="text-align: left; margin-left: 15pt;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 15pt; text-align: left;"> <span style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;' _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'>3. Click on the text below that says <b>"Click here to enter"</b> and fill out the information (your name, the address of your post, and a thumbnail image of what you shared). Your thumbnail will display below and will direct everyone who clicks on it back to your blog.</span></div> <div style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="text-align: left;"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;' _mce_style='font-family: "Times New Roman","serif"; font-size: 12pt;'>We can't wait to see all the wonderful things YOU will share!<br><br><br><?xml:namespace prefix = mce /><mce:script _mce_src="http://www.linkytools.com/thumbnail_linky_include.aspx?id=134581" type="text/javascript"></mce:script></span> <br> <mce:script _mce_src="http://www.linkytools.com/thumbnail_linky_include.aspx?id=133844" type="text/javascript"></mce:script><br> <div _mce_style=""> </div> </div> Now That's "Pretty Darn Funny" http://www.tofw.com/Now-Thats-Pretty-Darn-Funny-TOFW/s/484 http://www.tofw.com/Now-Thats-Pretty-Darn-Funny-TOFW/s/484 Wed, 07 Mar 2012 04:00:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XFIJ3sWVqL4/T1eGnSJfuTI/AAAAAAAAGH8/UaVpwkeS8kE/s1600/pdf+group+shot.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XFIJ3sWVqL4/T1eGnSJfuTI/AAAAAAAAGH8/UaVpwkeS8kE/s1600/pdf+group+shot.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XFIJ3sWVqL4/T1eGnSJfuTI/AAAAAAAAGH8/UaVpwkeS8kE/s640/pdf+group+shot.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XFIJ3sWVqL4/T1eGnSJfuTI/AAAAAAAAGH8/UaVpwkeS8kE/s640/pdf+group+shot.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="426"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <img _mce_src="../../../images/stories/general/182.jpg?1331137568" style="float: left;" _mce_style="float: left;" alt="182" src="../../../images/stories/general/182.jpg?1331137568" width="202" height="175"><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Every once in a while we find something that we can’t keep to ourselves because we love it so much! And this time it is FUNNY. And who doesn’t love FUNNY? Personally, I think we all need a little more of it in our lives, and we think we’ve finally found the perfect fix for that.</span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>Deseret Book Company is producing a new web series called <a href="http://prettydarnfunny.com/" _mce_href="http://prettydarnfunny.com/">PRETTY DARN FUNNY</a>.<span style="background: none repeat scroll 0% 0% yellow;" _mce_style="background: none repeat scroll 0% 0% yellow;"></span> It launches APRIL 2nd. You will love the cast—a dynamic group of value-centered women and mothers who are trying to clean up the comedy scene by starting their own hilarious troupe of funny. Filled with ridiculous happenings as varied as the personalities in them, this web series might be JUST the dose of funny you are looking for.</span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>But you’re asking, “why are you telling me this if I have to wait until April 2nd?” Well, as a part of our kick-off to Pretty Darn Funny, TOFW has partnered in a contest to see YOUR FUNNY. We want to hear what funny stories you have about life, mothering, vacations, working etc. We want to see which of you can make us snort while we laugh (and yes, some of us do that around here.) And just for sharing, we are entering you into a contest for a CRUISE for 2 compliments of <a href="http://morrismurdock.com/main.cfm?page=home&amp;boxtype=packages&amp;order=0" _mce_href="http://morrismurdock.com/main.cfm?page=home&amp;boxtype=packages&amp;order=0">MORRIS MURDOCK TRAVEL</a>. <span style="background: none repeat scroll 0% 0% yellow;" _mce_style="background: none repeat scroll 0% 0% yellow;"></span> I know…we are pretty nice, aren’t we? I won’t bore you with all the details here, so just go to the PRETTY DARN FUNNY CONTEST PAGE and see what it takes to enter. And if you’re coming to a TOFW event this Spring, we may just have a PRETTY DARN FUNNY booth there, waiting to record your funny story…so come prepared!<br><br></span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/0H1dN4et8T0?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/0H1dN4et8T0?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="360"></iframe> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>And then for those of you who are like me, and a cruise still isn’t enough to convince me to be recorded, and we would rather sit back and watch others make a fool of themselves, just SIGN-UP <a href="http://prettydarnfunny.com/tofw" _mce_href="http://prettydarnfunny.com/tofw">here</a> and let PDF keep you in the loop of the FUNNY going on, including the launch of the webisode on </span><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">April 2n</span><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MLn2dybBUnE/T1eKbtnvt5I/AAAAAAAAGIM/So3ulL0_rAA/s1600/pdf+blond+hair.png" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MLn2dybBUnE/T1eKbtnvt5I/AAAAAAAAGIM/So3ulL0_rAA/s1600/pdf+blond+hair.png" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MLn2dybBUnE/T1eKbtnvt5I/AAAAAAAAGIM/So3ulL0_rAA/s320/pdf+blond+hair.png" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MLn2dybBUnE/T1eKbtnvt5I/AAAAAAAAGIM/So3ulL0_rAA/s320/pdf+blond+hair.png" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;" border="0" width="261" height="176"></a><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">d.</span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> </div> <div class="MsoPlainText"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Okay, enough FUNNY talk…have a great month!</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black; font-size: 10pt;" _mce_style="color: black; font-size: 10pt;"><br>Chrislyn Woolston</span><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black; font-size: 10pt;" _mce_style="color: black; font-size: 10pt;">Director, TOFW</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: black; font-size: 10pt;" _mce_style="color: black; font-size: 10pt;"><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> VIDEO: The Power of Positive Thinking http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Power-Positive-Thinking-Hilary-Weeks/s/483 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Power-Positive-Thinking-Hilary-Weeks/s/483 Wed, 07 Mar 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QOQhtg0F9zs/T1aU6fz_B6I/AAAAAAAAGH0/q12W00gk8Ok/s1600/clicker+counter.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QOQhtg0F9zs/T1aU6fz_B6I/AAAAAAAAGH0/q12W00gk8Ok/s1600/clicker+counter.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QOQhtg0F9zs/T1aU6fz_B6I/AAAAAAAAGH0/q12W00gk8Ok/s320/clicker+counter.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QOQhtg0F9zs/T1aU6fz_B6I/AAAAAAAAGH0/q12W00gk8Ok/s320/clicker+counter.jpg" border="0" width="272" height="175"></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11pt;"><br>“Click…Click…Click…” What is all that clicking going on?!? Well, it has something to do with what YOU are thinking! And we’re thinking you WON’T want to miss what Hilary Weeks discovered by doing a fun little experiment with her thoughts. Join Hilary and thousands of other women in the Clicker challenge! </span></div><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/b5WLtchSDBI?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/b5WLtchSDBI?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p><p></p><p></p><p></p> Friday Favorites: Funny Things Kids Say http://www.tofw.com/Friday-Favorites-Funny-Things-Kids-Say-TOFW/s/493 http://www.tofw.com/Friday-Favorites-Funny-Things-Kids-Say-TOFW/s/493 Fri, 02 Mar 2012 09:00:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-tWkwtu7tNPc/T0_q9F6b-KI/AAAAAAAAGEM/GPVvopkzETk/s1600/kids+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-tWkwtu7tNPc/T0_q9F6b-KI/AAAAAAAAGEM/GPVvopkzETk/s1600/kids+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-tWkwtu7tNPc/T0_q9F6b-KI/AAAAAAAAGEM/GPVvopkzETk/s640/kids+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-tWkwtu7tNPc/T0_q9F6b-KI/AAAAAAAAGEM/GPVvopkzETk/s640/kids+hero.jpg" height="384" width="640" border="0"></a></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif; text-align: left;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><em>Children see the world so differently and sometimes thier perspective on things is just plain hilarious. Many of you shared with us funny things your kids have said over the years &amp; we hope you get a good laugh out of some of our favorite responses!</em><br><br></span></div> <div style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lRRibHav7zs/T0_uqGxXJdI/AAAAAAAAGEc/RBTmYSomj10/s1600/elijah.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lRRibHav7zs/T0_uqGxXJdI/AAAAAAAAGEc/RBTmYSomj10/s1600/elijah.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lRRibHav7zs/T0_uqGxXJdI/AAAAAAAAGEc/RBTmYSomj10/s200/elijah.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lRRibHav7zs/T0_uqGxXJdI/AAAAAAAAGEc/RBTmYSomj10/s200/elijah.jpg" height="200" width="200" border="0"></a></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125); font-size: large;" _mce_style="color: #1f497d; font-size: large;"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"> <br>My son Elijah was sitting in his car seat one night with a small container of gold fish. He proceeded to clumsily dump the goldfish out, holding the container to the right of his head. When I, a little impatiently, asked him why he was doing that he said, "Sorry mom. I was trying to dump them into my mouth, but I forgot where my mouth was." <br><br>-Erica S. <br><br><br><br><br></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-foSvrSLPs10/T0_v1DGQY8I/AAAAAAAAGEk/_azGkiSULKo/s1600/white+house.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-foSvrSLPs10/T0_v1DGQY8I/AAAAAAAAGEk/_azGkiSULKo/s1600/white+house.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-foSvrSLPs10/T0_v1DGQY8I/AAAAAAAAGEk/_azGkiSULKo/s200/white+house.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-foSvrSLPs10/T0_v1DGQY8I/AAAAAAAAGEk/_azGkiSULKo/s200/white+house.jpg" height="133" width="200" border="0"></a></span></div> <span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125); font-size: large;" _mce_style="color: #1f497d; font-size: large;"><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">This year, my 5 year old, Keaton, was learning about the US government in Kindergarten.&nbsp; He came home and was telling me about the Statue of Liberty, the Liberty Bell, etc.&nbsp; When he got to the topic of the White House he said, "then, there's this house...I think it's white...and all the prophets have lived there".&nbsp; I asked him WHO lived there and again,and he said ALL the prophets."&nbsp; When I realized that he was talking about the WHITE HOUSE, I knew he was confusing our use of President of the Church being the Prophet and President of the United States. It still makes me chuckle!!!&nbsp; </span></span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br>-Nikki B. <br><br><br></span> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-89wE_QUuYmE/T0_yk69qMwI/AAAAAAAAGEs/DvNS7zKTE_8/s1600/door+crash.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-89wE_QUuYmE/T0_yk69qMwI/AAAAAAAAGEs/DvNS7zKTE_8/s1600/door+crash.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-89wE_QUuYmE/T0_yk69qMwI/AAAAAAAAGEs/DvNS7zKTE_8/s640/door+crash.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-89wE_QUuYmE/T0_yk69qMwI/AAAAAAAAGEs/DvNS7zKTE_8/s640/door+crash.jpg" height="378" width="640" border="0"></a></span></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> Two of my kids (ages 3 &amp; 5 at the time) were plying in the bedroom when I heard a loud *CRASH*!! I jumped up from my seat &amp; ran to see what happened &amp; saw that the closet door had somehow fallen off its track &amp; slammed to the ground (wood door + wood floor = loud!) My little girl looked at me in terror, not sure how to react to what had just happened, while my son, cool as a cucumber, just looked at me &amp; said, "Mom, we need to get Jesus in here to fix this!" I love that at such a young age, he already knows that his Savior is where he turns for help! (it's the middle 2 in the picture) <br><br>- Michelle P.</span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div><p> <br><br></p><div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">My daughter Haley was 4 when she wanted to say her own prayers without help.&nbsp;For the dinner prayer one night, after learning about the prophet and&nbsp;apostles in primary,&nbsp;she said, "Please bless the prophet and his posse... with speed and strength." We managed to contain ourselves until she said “amen,” then had a great laugh.<br></span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br>-Erin O. <br><br><br><br>In Sharing Time I had the children share their favorite scripture story or something they have learned from the scriptures. My favorite was one who shared the story of Ammon. It went something like this:</span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br>"and so he cut off all the robbers' arms - so the king said, 'Whoa! are you God or something?' and Ammon said, 'No, but I am one of his minions...'"</span> <br><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br>-Dawn A. </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><br><br><br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eX1ppf3-Up0/T0_zUrRktqI/AAAAAAAAGE0/_ci0BPfA6bQ/s1600/jesus+with+glasses.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eX1ppf3-Up0/T0_zUrRktqI/AAAAAAAAGE0/_ci0BPfA6bQ/s1600/jesus+with+glasses.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><br><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eX1ppf3-Up0/T0_zUrRktqI/AAAAAAAAGE0/_ci0BPfA6bQ/s320/jesus+with+glasses.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eX1ppf3-Up0/T0_zUrRktqI/AAAAAAAAGE0/_ci0BPfA6bQ/s320/jesus+with+glasses.jpg" height="256" width="256" border="0"></a></span></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">When my daughter was 3, we were working with her on identifying the prophet (Gordon B. Hinckley at the time) from a set of photographs.&nbsp; We laid out artwork from the gospel art picture kit on the floor, and included Jesus, Gordon B Hinckley and Joseph Smith.&nbsp; My daughter, who is hearing impaired and at the time used sign language as her main form of communication started to identify the photos.&nbsp; First we pointed to Joseph Smith, to which she signed back that she wasn’t sure or didn’t know.&nbsp; Next we pointed to Jesus whom she identified immediately by pointing to the palms of her hands (The sign for Jesus). Finally we pointed to Gordon B. Hinckley.&nbsp; She thought about it for a while, and then carefully picked up the picture and examined it a bit closer.&nbsp; Finally satisfied that she had the correct answer she signed&nbsp; “Jesus with Glasses.” </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br><br>-Tamara H. <br><br><br></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Dul5Zlc3EaE/T0_2i_l8GZI/AAAAAAAAGFU/pFB4X8pnjk8/s1600/whitney.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Dul5Zlc3EaE/T0_2i_l8GZI/AAAAAAAAGFU/pFB4X8pnjk8/s1600/whitney.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Dul5Zlc3EaE/T0_2i_l8GZI/AAAAAAAAGFU/pFB4X8pnjk8/s200/whitney.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Dul5Zlc3EaE/T0_2i_l8GZI/AAAAAAAAGFU/pFB4X8pnjk8/s200/whitney.JPG" height="246" width="190" border="0"></a></span></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br>I was telling my little Whitney, age 4, about how a tornado had hit a building in Billings, MT and that they had been fixing it. She asked, "Did you read that on Facebook?"</span> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black; font-size: large;" _mce_style="color: black; font-size: large;"> <br>-Nicole <br><br><br><br></span></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br><br><br><br><br>When our youngest son was still in school he was always trying to find ways to get out of doing his homework. One night after dinner his dad told him to go do is homework and with out missing a beat our son said, "I can't do my homework 'til my food digests!" He made us all laugh. He is 25 now and has two kids. We can't wait 'til they are in school to tell them what their dad did!</span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br>-Theresa M.</span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><br><br><br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-snL8RY5qJ-A/T0_z0NPxqoI/AAAAAAAAGE8/0qZH_j2UKSE/s1600/joanna.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-snL8RY5qJ-A/T0_z0NPxqoI/AAAAAAAAGE8/0qZH_j2UKSE/s1600/joanna.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-snL8RY5qJ-A/T0_z0NPxqoI/AAAAAAAAGE8/0qZH_j2UKSE/s320/joanna.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-snL8RY5qJ-A/T0_z0NPxqoI/AAAAAAAAGE8/0qZH_j2UKSE/s320/joanna.jpg" height="320" width="319" border="0"></a></span></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br>We were driving up and down and up and down through the parking lot trying to find a space.</span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br>"Mom why don't you just park where there's a blue picture of a man sitting sitting on the toilet" Brighton said with genuine sincerity.<br><br></span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">"Because that isn't a man on a toilet, that is for handicapped PEOPLE!" </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">Kennedy </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">said with all the certainty of a 5 year old that knows everything.</span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br><br>-Joanna B. <br><br><br></span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br><br>My 4 year old came into the kitchen where I was talking to 'funny-kiss grandma' while washing dishes and tearfully declared: <br><br>"I'm soooooooo sad!" <br><br>"Why are you sad?" I asked. <br><br>"Because I LOST MY SMILE!" <br><br>It only took a couple of tickles for him to find it again and leave giggling. <br><br>-Debra B.</span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><br><br><br><br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iHE0pF2KBCI/T0_014eVtbI/AAAAAAAAGFM/4bzrq9mjgsY/s1600/amanda+2.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iHE0pF2KBCI/T0_014eVtbI/AAAAAAAAGFM/4bzrq9mjgsY/s1600/amanda+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iHE0pF2KBCI/T0_014eVtbI/AAAAAAAAGFM/4bzrq9mjgsY/s320/amanda+2.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iHE0pF2KBCI/T0_014eVtbI/AAAAAAAAGFM/4bzrq9mjgsY/s320/amanda+2.jpg" height="203" width="145" border="0"></a></span></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><span id="goog_1742617105"></span><span id="goog_1742617106"></span>While I was upset one day my sweet five year old said, "Mom, the most important thing is that we are with our family, we love God, and if we get in trouble we can pray and talk to God." So wise!<br><br></span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">That same kid dropped pencil shavings on the ground and then proceeded to tell me, "I'll let you clean that up while I jump on the trampoline." </span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;Ha ha!</span></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br>-Amanda I.</span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><br><br><br><br></div> <div class="MsoPlainText" style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;" _mce_style="font-family: Times,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">One day when our daughter was about four years old, we were driving along and she started asking questions about Satan.&nbsp; My husband and I, seeing this as a teaching opportunity, started out by explaining that he doesn’t have a body like we do.&nbsp; He’s jealous of our bodies and that’s why he tries to get people to do things that hurt their bodies like smoking and other harmful things.&nbsp; Then we went on and on giving way too complicated of an answer for a four year old about who Satan is.&nbsp; When we finally stopped and asked if she had any questions, she simply asked, “You said he doesn’t have a body.&nbsp; You mean, he’s just a HEAD?”&nbsp; </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br><br>-Dorianne V.</span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> <br><br><br></span> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-i0Rwq9Tr8gk/T1ABDrAdrcI/AAAAAAAAGFc/NUc1t4zNE4w/s1600/Wish_Upon_a_Star_CD_product.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-i0Rwq9Tr8gk/T1ABDrAdrcI/AAAAAAAAGFc/NUc1t4zNE4w/s1600/Wish_Upon_a_Star_CD_product.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-i0Rwq9Tr8gk/T1ABDrAdrcI/AAAAAAAAGFc/NUc1t4zNE4w/s1600/Wish_Upon_a_Star_CD_product.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-i0Rwq9Tr8gk/T1ABDrAdrcI/AAAAAAAAGFc/NUc1t4zNE4w/s1600/Wish_Upon_a_Star_CD_product.jpg" border="0"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> And the winner of this week's giveaway is....Heather! Congratulations! We hope you enjoy your new <a href="http://deseretbook.com/Wish-Upon-Star-Tribute-Music-Walt-Disney-Jenny-Oaks-Baker/i/5055026" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/Wish-Upon-Star-Tribute-Music-Walt-Disney-Jenny-Oaks-Baker/i/5055026">Wish Upon a Star</a> cd by Grammy nominee Jenny Oaks Baker...and your new dress ;) <br><br><br><br><br><br><br> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br>While leading the music in Primary this past Sunday my 10 year old son said in a voice loud enough for the entire room to hear “Mom you need to donate that dress to D. I.”&nbsp; &nbsp; <br><br></span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> -Heather T. <br><br><br></span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="color: rgb(31, 73, 125); font-size: large;" _mce_style="color: #1f497d; font-size: large;"></span></div> Winner Announced: RSS Contest http://www.tofw.com/Winner-Announced-RSS-Contest-TOFW/s/495 http://www.tofw.com/Winner-Announced-RSS-Contest-TOFW/s/495 Fri, 02 Mar 2012 08:27:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6X7I8A9rTXM/T1EA6rbdoiI/AAAAAAAAGGM/S9BzRUVGvVc/s1600/RSS+hero+2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6X7I8A9rTXM/T1EA6rbdoiI/AAAAAAAAGGM/S9BzRUVGvVc/s1600/RSS+hero+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6X7I8A9rTXM/T1EA6rbdoiI/AAAAAAAAGGM/S9BzRUVGvVc/s640/RSS+hero+2.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-6X7I8A9rTXM/T1EA6rbdoiI/AAAAAAAAGGM/S9BzRUVGvVc/s640/RSS+hero+2.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="384"> </a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-MaoZH6OIt7A/T1EBBXcjYPI/AAAAAAAAGGU/mxdiXQVNGzs/s1600/RSS+Icon.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-MaoZH6OIt7A/T1EBBXcjYPI/AAAAAAAAGGU/mxdiXQVNGzs/s1600/RSS+Icon.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-MaoZH6OIt7A/T1EBBXcjYPI/AAAAAAAAGGU/mxdiXQVNGzs/s200/RSS+Icon.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-MaoZH6OIt7A/T1EBBXcjYPI/AAAAAAAAGGU/mxdiXQVNGzs/s200/RSS+Icon.jpg" border="0" width="111" height="111"></a><br>Last week we shared a way you can keep up with all the latest posts on TOFW.com: the <a href="http://tofw.com/story/474-contest-do-you-rss" _mce_href="../../story/474-contest-do-you-rss">RSS feed</a>. Don't know what an RSS feed is? Go <a href="http://tofw.com/story/474-contest-do-you-rss" _mce_href="../../story/474-contest-do-you-rss">here</a> and we'll tell you all about it. <br></div><p>Simplicity is just a click away. <a href="http://tofw.com/rss" _mce_href="../../rss">Subscribe</a> today and TOFW's latest posts, videos, and blogs will come right to you so you won't miss a thing. <br><br>The winner of <a href="http://tofw.com/story/474-contest-do-you-rss" _mce_href="../../story/474-contest-do-you-rss">TOFW's RSS Contes</a>t is Ann S. Congratulations, Ann!</p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p> VIDEO: Selfish or Selfless? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Selfish-Selfless-Julie%20-de%20Azevedo%20Hanks/s/487 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Selfish-Selfless-Julie%20-de%20Azevedo%20Hanks/s/487 Wed, 29 Feb 2012 10:30:00 -0700 <div> </div> <p><span></span><span id="goog_718721486"></span></p> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ItTKxWdIObg/T01vStKB4gI/AAAAAAAAGBg/Jgq9uxctJgY/s1600/relax.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ItTKxWdIObg/T01vStKB4gI/AAAAAAAAGBg/Jgq9uxctJgY/s1600/relax.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ItTKxWdIObg/T01vStKB4gI/AAAAAAAAGBg/Jgq9uxctJgY/s320/relax.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ItTKxWdIObg/T01vStKB4gI/AAAAAAAAGBg/Jgq9uxctJgY/s320/relax.jpg" border="0" width="225" height="160"></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11pt;" _mce_style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11pt;"><br>Do you forget to put [INSERT YOUR OWN NAME HERE] on your priority list? When the list gets long and life gets crazy, are you the last thing that gets looked at? Licensed Clinical Social Worker and therapist, and Time Out for Women presenter Julie de Azevedo Hanks shares some insights about the importance of making YOU a priority in your life.<br><br></span></div><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Myl_aJAUX-A?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Myl_aJAUX-A?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p> Too Much of A Good Thing? http://www.tofw.com/Too-Much-Good-Thing-Kate-Jones/s/481 http://www.tofw.com/Too-Much-Good-Thing-Kate-Jones/s/481 Mon, 27 Feb 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-l0DApaveRPA/T0fp-JrATXI/AAAAAAAAF_I/WQ3WEgxneYY/s1600/eating%2Bcake.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-l0DApaveRPA/T0fp-JrATXI/AAAAAAAAF_I/WQ3WEgxneYY/s1600/eating%2Bcake.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-l0DApaveRPA/T0fp-JrATXI/AAAAAAAAF_I/WQ3WEgxneYY/s640/eating%2Bcake.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-l0DApaveRPA/T0fp-JrATXI/AAAAAAAAF_I/WQ3WEgxneYY/s640/eating%2Bcake.jpg" border="0" height="428" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> I am not known for being the world’s neatest person. When I got married, my sisters and my roommates tried to warn my future husband about my messy tendencies. Everyday clutter just seems to follow me wherever I go and I don’t even really realize it until I look over onto my nightstand and discover that’s where all our drinking glasses are, all about ½ full with room temperature water. Seriously, I’m like the little girl from the movie Signs. </p><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YT7DJgwu-44/T0fqVgVoFII/AAAAAAAAF_Q/LBwsp6g9wwE/s1600/laundry.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YT7DJgwu-44/T0fqVgVoFII/AAAAAAAAF_Q/LBwsp6g9wwE/s1600/laundry.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YT7DJgwu-44/T0fqVgVoFII/AAAAAAAAF_Q/LBwsp6g9wwE/s320/laundry.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YT7DJgwu-44/T0fqVgVoFII/AAAAAAAAF_Q/LBwsp6g9wwE/s320/laundry.jpg" border="0" height="213" width="320"></a>The strange flip side of this is that I am almost obsessively clean, and right at the top of my love-to-clean list is doing laundry. When my husband graduated from BYU and was offered a job as an engineer at a facility that manufactures laundry detergent, we were ecstatic because not only were the seemingly never-ending years of college poverty and stress ending, but it also meant and endless supply of laundry detergent. More of it than I could ever want. When we bought our house, I devoted an entire closet to our laundry detergent collection. I spent a lot of time arranging and rearranging it—by brand, by size, by when we received it. When life got hectic, I would hide from my children in my laundry closet and take a few deep breaths of fabric softener-scented air and all was well in my world. </div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kqn2VUZrEqw/T0fwykBz8bI/AAAAAAAAF_Y/Ornag7bUj20/s1600/lifesaver.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kqn2VUZrEqw/T0fwykBz8bI/AAAAAAAAF_Y/Ornag7bUj20/s1600/lifesaver.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> But then something happened. Life got crazy. I became the Primary President in my ward. I discovered that school-age kids have a lot more time-consuming obligations than babies and toddlers. My little hobby blog turned into a full-fledged business, complete with all the wonderful and stressful things that accompany being self-employed. My blog partner and I wrote and promoted a book and then wrote another one. In a moment of insanity, I bought a puppy who thinks she’s a human baby. My husband often works 12-hour (or longer) days 6 days a week. Over a period of two weeks, I convinced myself I was dying of some sort of terminal reproductive disorder and then actually laughed when I saw the word “pregnant” show up on a home test because, of course, that was the most obvious diagnosis for my symptoms. <br></p><div _mce_style="clear: both;" class="separator" style="clear: both;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EYBW991_f2c/T0fw7r3R94I/AAAAAAAAF_g/rzvKt5LPsCg/s1600/lifesaver.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EYBW991_f2c/T0fw7r3R94I/AAAAAAAAF_g/rzvKt5LPsCg/s1600/lifesaver.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EYBW991_f2c/T0fw7r3R94I/AAAAAAAAF_g/rzvKt5LPsCg/s400/lifesaver.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EYBW991_f2c/T0fw7r3R94I/AAAAAAAAF_g/rzvKt5LPsCg/s400/lifesaver.jpg" border="0" height="243" width="345"></a>I’ll be honest: sometimes, I feel like I’m drowning. <br><br>I didn’t realize how thinly spread I felt until a) Sara and I started putting together our presentation for <a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/schedule" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/schedule">Time Out for Women</a> and I kept thinking, “How in the world am I supposed to discuss the blessings of motherhood when I literally have a nightly countdown for when my kids go to bed?!” and b) my friend came over, opened my laundry closet to witness the wonders within, only to discover that it was in shambles. I couldn’t get to the powdered Tide in the corner without very possibly injuring myself. <br><br>I had too much laundry detergent. I had too much of a good thing. Something had to go. I immediately thought of Elder Oaks’ October 2007 General Conference talk, “Good, Better, Best” and Elder Uchtdorf’s October 2010 talk, “Of Things that Matter Most.” I went back and read them. I cried. In his address, Elder Uchtdorf said, </div><blockquote class="tr_bq"> Let’s be honest; it’s rather easy to be busy. We all can think up a list of tasks that will overwhelm our schedules. Some might even think that their self-worth depends on the length of their to-do list. They flood the open spaces in their time with lists of meetings and minutia—even during times of stress and fatigue. Because they unnecessarily complicate their lives, they often feel increased frustration, diminished joy, and too little sense of meaning in their lives.</blockquote><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-rFoemoBfz3s/T0f0R7V5OYI/AAAAAAAAF_o/0izkDv8FIrM/s1600/donate.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-rFoemoBfz3s/T0f0R7V5OYI/AAAAAAAAF_o/0izkDv8FIrM/s1600/donate.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-e_FZ3X1bWW8/T0f1FNxYl8I/AAAAAAAAF_w/v5B9tXP4-nM/s1600/donations.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-e_FZ3X1bWW8/T0f1FNxYl8I/AAAAAAAAF_w/v5B9tXP4-nM/s1600/donations.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-e_FZ3X1bWW8/T0f1FNxYl8I/AAAAAAAAF_w/v5B9tXP4-nM/s1600/donations.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-e_FZ3X1bWW8/T0f1FNxYl8I/AAAAAAAAF_w/v5B9tXP4-nM/s1600/donations.jpg" border="0" height="237" width="237"></a>Ummm, hello. That was meI knew it was time to simplify. <br><br>So 2012 is my year of clearing out the clutter—figuring out what’s necessary, what’s best in my life and letting everything else go. If you’re feeling a little stressed, a little overwhelmed, kind of wishing you could go on a vacation by yourself, I’m willing to bet you have your own version of a messy laundry detergent closet somewhere. See what you can get rid of. Because even though those 20 bottles of fabric softener are good, 3 bottles that fit neatly into my closet are even better.<br><br><br><br><br></div> CONTEST: Do You RSS? http://www.tofw.com/CONTEST-Do-You-RSS-TOFW/s/474 http://www.tofw.com/CONTEST-Do-You-RSS-TOFW/s/474 Thu, 23 Feb 2012 08:03:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-xNBQ7SGFrag/T0P3LHUrj2I/AAAAAAAAF8Q/t-RdIZNCKYA/s1600/rss+hero+new.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-xNBQ7SGFrag/T0P3LHUrj2I/AAAAAAAAF8Q/t-RdIZNCKYA/s1600/rss+hero+new.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-xNBQ7SGFrag/T0P3LHUrj2I/AAAAAAAAF8Q/t-RdIZNCKYA/s640/rss+hero+new.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-xNBQ7SGFrag/T0P3LHUrj2I/AAAAAAAAF8Q/t-RdIZNCKYA/s640/rss+hero+new.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><span id="goog_213193352"></span><span id="goog_213193353"></span></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-03gCj4ulQxk/T0PpvVSZDbI/AAAAAAAAF7w/OHYy_lWNvRk/s1600/RSS+hero+2.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-03gCj4ulQxk/T0PpvVSZDbI/AAAAAAAAF7w/OHYy_lWNvRk/s1600/RSS+hero+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><br></a></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Zxx9CUdmSJg/Tz1EL8z1AlI/AAAAAAAAF5s/sjRBKoXuBHk/s1600/RSS+Icon.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Zxx9CUdmSJg/Tz1EL8z1AlI/AAAAAAAAF5s/sjRBKoXuBHk/s1600/RSS+Icon.jpg" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Zxx9CUdmSJg/Tz1EL8z1AlI/AAAAAAAAF5s/sjRBKoXuBHk/s320/RSS+Icon.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Zxx9CUdmSJg/Tz1EL8z1AlI/AAAAAAAAF5s/sjRBKoXuBHk/s320/RSS+Icon.jpg" border="0" height="182" width="181"></a></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""> </span> <span style="" _mce_style="">Does your life and "to-do" list get a little crazy at times? Are you looking for ways to simplify? Well, we might not be able to help with the errands, the laundry or that report you're working on, but we CAN help you keep up with all of the great posts on TOFW.com with one simple click! </span><span style="font-size: 11pt; font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; color: rgb(31, 73, 125);" _mce_style="font-size: 11pt; font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; color: #1f497d;"><br><br></span><span style="" _mce_style="">Are you familiar with <a href="http://tofw.com/rss" _mce_href="../../../rss" target="_blank">RSS feed</a>? Promise it's quick, easy, and will become your new best friend.<br><br> </span> <span style="" _mce_style=""> </span> <span style="" _mce_style="">When you subscribe to an&nbsp; RSS or "really simple syndication" feed, new content from your favorite blogs and websites will come directly to you. You can use a feed reader such as&nbsp;<a href="http://www.google.com/reader" _mce_href="http://www.google.com/reader"><cite></cite></a><a href="http://www.google.com/reader" _mce_href="http://www.google.com/reader" target="_blank">Google Reader</a> or <a href="http://www.bloglines.com/" _mce_href="http://www.bloglines.com/" target="_blank">Bloglines</a> or simply save the feed in your browser's Favorites Folder. Each time something new is posted, it will appear in your feed. The content may display differently than on the website, but you won't miss a thing and you no longer need to hassle with bookmarks or manually visiting all your favorite sites. <br><br></span> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gLZmNpXj1A0/T0Pw4AaSqhI/AAAAAAAAF8I/aWhr-TutPuA/s1600/reader+view.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gLZmNpXj1A0/T0Pw4AaSqhI/AAAAAAAAF8I/aWhr-TutPuA/s1600/reader+view.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gLZmNpXj1A0/T0Pw4AaSqhI/AAAAAAAAF8I/aWhr-TutPuA/s400/reader+view.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gLZmNpXj1A0/T0Pw4AaSqhI/AAAAAAAAF8I/aWhr-TutPuA/s400/reader+view.jpg" border="0" height="342" width="354"></a></span></div> <span style="" _mce_style=""> </span> <span style="" _mce_style=""> </span> <span style="" _mce_style=""> <br><br><br><br>Here is an example of how your feed will be displayed: <br><br><br><br><br><br><br> <br><br><br><br><br><br><br>TOFW.com offers several <a href="http://tofw.com/rss" _mce_href="../../../rss" target="_blank">RSS feed</a> subscription options. You can subscribe to ALL updates so that&nbsp; each time we post a new blog, video, or message on TOFW.com it will come directly to you. Or if you would prefer to only receive updates about your favorite category (<a href="http://tofw.com/topic/51-tofw-blog" _mce_href="../../../topic/51-tofw-blog" target="_blank">TOFW Blog</a>, <a href="http://tofw.com/topic/52-featured-blogs" _mce_href="../../../topic/52-featured-blogs" target="_blank">Featured Blogs</a>, <a href="http://tofw.com/topic/53-women-like-you" _mce_href="../../../topic/53-women-like-you" target="_blank">Women Like You</a> or <a href="http://tofw.com/videos" _mce_href="../../../videos" target="_blank">Videos</a>) you can subscribe to a specific feed.&nbsp; <br><br></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AnTGcZkz5JQ/T0PrCjZwoUI/AAAAAAAAF8A/ZrLa0NA0Zb4/s1600/RSS+FEEDS+SLIM.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AnTGcZkz5JQ/T0PrCjZwoUI/AAAAAAAAF8A/ZrLa0NA0Zb4/s1600/RSS+FEEDS+SLIM.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AnTGcZkz5JQ/T0PrCjZwoUI/AAAAAAAAF8A/ZrLa0NA0Zb4/s640/RSS+FEEDS+SLIM.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-AnTGcZkz5JQ/T0PrCjZwoUI/AAAAAAAAF8A/ZrLa0NA0Zb4/s640/RSS+FEEDS+SLIM.jpg" border="0" height="224" width="640"></a></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-aG-vjxyISx0/T0PqYXkj-eI/AAAAAAAAF74/bcpsD0razNo/s1600/rss+feed+options+2.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-aG-vjxyISx0/T0PqYXkj-eI/AAAAAAAAF74/bcpsD0razNo/s1600/rss+feed+options+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"> </a></span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nyWile1Me9U/T0PnohTRGjI/AAAAAAAAF7Y/TX0R67klSPE/s1600/rss+feed+options.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nyWile1Me9U/T0PnohTRGjI/AAAAAAAAF7Y/TX0R67klSPE/s1600/rss+feed+options.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"> </a></span></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> <span style="" _mce_style=""><br>It's easy. It's free. It will simplify your life and keep you in the loop. So take a moment right now...we'll wait ;)...and subscribe! Simply click on the RSS button in the top right corner of <a href="http://tofw.com/" _mce_href="../../../">TOFW.com</a> or follow this link: <a href="http://tofw.com/" _mce_href="../../../">TOFW.com RSS feed subscription<br></a><br>And just because we LOVE giving great stuff away from our <a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/presenters" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/presenters">presenters</a>, subscribe to our RSS feed and leave a comment below and you will be entered to win next week's giveaway. The winner will be announced on Friday, March 2--or watch for it on your RSS feed!<br><br><br><br> </span></div> VIDEO: Three Simple Words http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Three-Simple-Words-Chris-Williams/s/477 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Three-Simple-Words-Chris-Williams/s/477 Wed, 22 Feb 2012 09:42:00 -0700 <div> </div> <p>Our reaction to the tragedies and sorrows of life will determine our happiness. TOFW presenter Chris Williams survived a terrible car accident that claimed the life of his wife and several of their children. Listen as he shares the three life-changing words that came to his mind just moments after their vehicle was hit and how those simple words brought him peace.</p> <p><iframe height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/0pb5IHMQCys?rel=0" frameBorder="0" width="640" allowfullscreen="" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/0pb5IHMQCys?rel=0"></iframe></p> A Crown, A Castle, and a Kingdom http://www.tofw.com/Crown-Castle-Kingdom-Anthony-Sweat/s/472 http://www.tofw.com/Crown-Castle-Kingdom-Anthony-Sweat/s/472 Mon, 20 Feb 2012 15:20:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-4mpObBgZskg/Tz7Qeh_n_qI/AAAAAAAAF6I/V1h9DJj0iYg/s1600/kingdom.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-4mpObBgZskg/Tz7Qeh_n_qI/AAAAAAAAF6I/V1h9DJj0iYg/s1600/kingdom.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-4mpObBgZskg/Tz7Qeh_n_qI/AAAAAAAAF6I/V1h9DJj0iYg/s640/kingdom.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-4mpObBgZskg/Tz7Qeh_n_qI/AAAAAAAAF6I/V1h9DJj0iYg/s640/kingdom.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="426"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 14pt;" _mce_style="margin-bottom: 14pt;"> <b><span style="color: black; font-size: 14pt;" _mce_style="color: black; font-size: 14pt;"></span></b></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: left;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jqensTcQSiw/Tz7QmA8wm9I/AAAAAAAAF6Q/FtVIqpwZAFk/s1600/princess+girl.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jqensTcQSiw/Tz7QmA8wm9I/AAAAAAAAF6Q/FtVIqpwZAFk/s1600/princess+girl.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jqensTcQSiw/Tz7QmA8wm9I/AAAAAAAAF6Q/FtVIqpwZAFk/s400/princess+girl.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jqensTcQSiw/Tz7QmA8wm9I/AAAAAAAAF6Q/FtVIqpwZAFk/s400/princess+girl.jpg" border="0" width="193" height="290"></a><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">The other day I was driving down the road taking my 11 year old daughter to basketball practice.&nbsp; The stereo was on and a new song by a popular band started playing.&nbsp; The chorus went:<br><br></span></div></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"> I could've been a Princess, You'd be a King</span></i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">Could've had a castle, and wore a ring</span></i><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"> <br>Hearing those lyrics my daughter asked me: “Dad, why does everybody seem to want to be a princess or a king? It seems like every song and every movie out there has to do with something like that.”&nbsp; I was just about ready to enlighten her on the socialization of little girls caused by endless hours of exposure to Disney Princesses </span><span style="color: black; font-family: Wingdings;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: Wingdings;">J</span><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"> when suddenly a different, more inspired, thought came to my mind in answer to her question.&nbsp; I said, “Honey, people sing and write and make movies about Kings or Queens because deep down inside we know there is something royal within each of us.&nbsp; As sons and daughters of God, our spirit inherently knows that we each have a royal birthright to a crown and castle in the Kingdom of God.”&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VUSknOH5HBo/Tz7RLPES-pI/AAAAAAAAF6Y/siWEfZhWBUY/s1600/crown.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VUSknOH5HBo/Tz7RLPES-pI/AAAAAAAAF6Y/siWEfZhWBUY/s1600/crown.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VUSknOH5HBo/Tz7RLPES-pI/AAAAAAAAF6Y/siWEfZhWBUY/s200/crown.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VUSknOH5HBo/Tz7RLPES-pI/AAAAAAAAF6Y/siWEfZhWBUY/s200/crown.jpg" border="0" width="200" height="150"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"> In the aftermath of the year of William-and-Kate royal wedding infatuation, the thought of a crown, a castle, and a kingdom has come back to me often.&nbsp; To understand our spiritual royalty, we need look no further back than one generation to God our Father. &nbsp;Each of us literally is a prince or a princess, with potential to rule and reign in the kingdom of God.&nbsp; <span id="goog_2094208659"></span><span id="goog_2094208660"></span> </span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gNxGbtZldj0/Tz7R9XT6EfI/AAAAAAAAF6o/gZryKXoXMWs/s1600/real+castles.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gNxGbtZldj0/Tz7R9XT6EfI/AAAAAAAAF6o/gZryKXoXMWs/s1600/real+castles.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><br><br><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gNxGbtZldj0/Tz7R9XT6EfI/AAAAAAAAF6o/gZryKXoXMWs/s400/real+castles.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gNxGbtZldj0/Tz7R9XT6EfI/AAAAAAAAF6o/gZryKXoXMWs/s400/real+castles.jpg" border="0" width="336" height="511"></a><br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br>The thought of crowns, castles, and kingdoms came to me when I went inside the temple and pondered on the fact that I was already admitted entrance into the King’s castle—the Lord’s temple.&nbsp; I thought of crowns, castles, and kingdoms as I read in the scriptures where the Lord tells us to “come up unto the crown prepared for you, and be made rulers over many kingdoms” (D&amp;C 78:15) and that in the resurrection the faithful will inherit “thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers” (D&amp;C 132:19).&nbsp; And I thought of crowns, castles, and kingdoms again as I saw my three year old daughter dress up in princess garb and a tiara, asking me if I thought she was “bootiful.”&nbsp; I thought she was indeed beautiful, and more importantly, divine.&nbsp;</span>&nbsp; <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"> <br><br></span><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;">President Lorenzo Snow said of the faithful: “God will give you a crown of unfading glory, and make you kings and queens in the midst of your posterity, to rule in righteousness through the countless ages of eternities” (<em>The Teachings of Lorenzo Snow</em>, edited by Clyde J. Williams, p.49).&nbsp; May God bless each of us to see our divine worth and the divine worth of others as people with royal potential to inherit a heavenly crown, castle, and kingdom.</span> <span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"></span><span style="color: black;" _mce_style="color: black;"><br><br>Comment question: What helps you see others, and yourself, through the lens of divine, royal capacity? <br><br><br></span></div> Contest Winner {Link Party} http://www.tofw.com/Contest-Winner-Link-Party-TOFW/s/471 http://www.tofw.com/Contest-Winner-Link-Party-TOFW/s/471 Fri, 17 Feb 2012 14:38:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TR4iwvuePSE/Tz7Kwd6URHI/AAAAAAAAF6A/B1EqLUpMpY4/s1600/heart+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TR4iwvuePSE/Tz7Kwd6URHI/AAAAAAAAF6A/B1EqLUpMpY4/s1600/heart+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TR4iwvuePSE/Tz7Kwd6URHI/AAAAAAAAF6A/B1EqLUpMpY4/s640/heart+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TR4iwvuePSE/Tz7Kwd6URHI/AAAAAAAAF6A/B1EqLUpMpY4/s640/heart+hero.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="444"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XiA4odyZng0/Tz7IKSl46tI/AAAAAAAAF54/aFb-9xcaWZE/s1600/winner+is.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XiA4odyZng0/Tz7IKSl46tI/AAAAAAAAF54/aFb-9xcaWZE/s1600/winner+is.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">And the WINNER of our <a href="http://tofw.com/story/467-what-love-looks-like-link-party" _mce_href="../../story/467-what-love-looks-like-link-party" target="_blank">February Link Party</a> is...</span></p> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> </div> <div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">"Family Near and Far"<br>by Jacque!</span></div><p> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">Congratulations, Jacque!! We will be sending you some of our favorite products from our very own <a href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/presenters" _mce_href="http://deseretbook.com/timeout/presenters" target="_blank">Time Out for Women presenters</a>. </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br>Thank you to everyone who participated! We enjoyed seeing <a href="http://tofw.com/story/467-what-love-looks-like-link-party" _mce_href="../../story/467-what-love-looks-like-link-party" target="_blank">What LOVE Looks Like</a> to you. </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br><br>Join us at TOFW.com on Monday, March 5 for our next Link Party.<br><br><br></span></p> VIDEO: What Do Your Roots Say? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-Do-Your-Roots-Say-Cherie-Call/s/470 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-Do-Your-Roots-Say-Cherie-Call/s/470 Fri, 17 Feb 2012 00:14:00 -0700 <div> </div> <p>Have you ever wondered who you might find on your family tree? Perhaps one of your ancestors was a pioneer, an artist, or maybe even a pirate. But what does being related to any of these people mean for you? Listen as TOFW music artist Cherie Call shares her thoughts about family inheritances and identifies some family history we can all be proud of.</p><p></p><p><br><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Oq66wdG6kZM?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Oq66wdG6kZM?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="640" frameborder="0" height="480"></iframe></p><p></p><p></p> Hitting the Red Carpet http://www.tofw.com/Hitting-Red-Carpet-Jenny-Oaks%20Baker/s/460 http://www.tofw.com/Hitting-Red-Carpet-Jenny-Oaks%20Baker/s/460 Wed, 15 Feb 2012 08:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><div class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;" style="font-size: medium; clear: both;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NVvy9r7M-o8/TzrZ8ngWmgI/AAAAAAAAF5c/U2nZROqtU9Q/s1600/red+carpet+hero.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NVvy9r7M-o8/TzrZ8ngWmgI/AAAAAAAAF5c/U2nZROqtU9Q/s1600/red+carpet+hero.jpg" style="margin-right: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NVvy9r7M-o8/TzrZ8ngWmgI/AAAAAAAAF5c/U2nZROqtU9Q/s640/red+carpet+hero.jpg" width="640" height="386" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NVvy9r7M-o8/TzrZ8ngWmgI/AAAAAAAAF5c/U2nZROqtU9Q/s640/red+carpet+hero.jpg" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">With TOFW presenter Jenny Oaks Baker being nominated for a Grammy award for her album,&nbsp;<i>Wish Upon a Star</i>, we had to steal her away for a second and get the scoop of what it’s like walking down the red carpet…<br></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b><i><br></i></b></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><i><b><font size="5">Where were you and who were you with you discovered that you were nominated for a Grammy award?</font></b><br></i></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">It was 11:00pm and I had just finished practicing with my two oldest children, Laura and Hannah. &nbsp; I knew that they would be posting the nominations on the Grammy website at that time, so my daughters and I went online to check.&nbsp; My husband, &nbsp;Matt, who was in Australia on business called us just as we saw my name listed as a nominee and&nbsp; started&nbsp; screaming at the top of our lungs. I guess Matt eventually understood my excited screams and we were all able to rejoice together.&nbsp;</font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br>My family, especially my husband, have been incredibly supportive.&nbsp; My kids were excited that they had something to share with their teachers and classmates&nbsp; the morning after the announcement. And they were excited to watch for me on the red-carpet at the Grammy awards.&nbsp; My husband has been amazing!&nbsp; He helped me feel like a true princess to get me ready for the red carpet.</font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><br></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b><i><font face="inherit"><font size="5">We loved your dress.&nbsp; Was it difficult to find a modest dress?&nbsp;&nbsp;</font></font></i></b><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" _mce_style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; text-align: right; float: right;"><tbody><tr><td _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bj7zY1EysHw/TzrZ8cb8u7I/AAAAAAAAF5U/3VtlhVSsZd8/s1600/jenny+at+grammys.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bj7zY1EysHw/TzrZ8cb8u7I/AAAAAAAAF5U/3VtlhVSsZd8/s1600/jenny+at+grammys.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-right: auto; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bj7zY1EysHw/TzrZ8cb8u7I/AAAAAAAAF5U/3VtlhVSsZd8/s400/jenny+at+grammys.jpg" width="248" height="324" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bj7zY1EysHw/TzrZ8cb8u7I/AAAAAAAAF5U/3VtlhVSsZd8/s400/jenny+at+grammys.jpg" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;"><font face="inherit" size="3">Jenny and Suzette Bruggeman</font></td></tr></tbody></table><br><b><i><font face="inherit"></font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">I have a dear friend, Suzette Bruggeman, who has been acting as my stylist.&nbsp; She spent weeks searching for the perfect dress for me to wear on the red carpet.&nbsp; She finally found me a BCBG Maxazria gown that is modest and elegant.&nbsp; I love my dress and will always be grateful to Suzette for helping me find it.&nbsp; She and her husband were also able to attend the Grammys with us.&nbsp; She looked stunning in her modest green gown.&nbsp; We both got many compliments on our gowns and I felt every bit as stylish.&nbsp; Modesty really stands out and I’m grateful I chose to remain modest!&nbsp;</font><br><font face="inherit"></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><b><i><br></i></b></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><i><font size="5">What was one of your favorite moments during the night?&nbsp;</font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><i><font size="5"><br></font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">I LOVED walking the red carpet!&nbsp; At the end of the carpet, there is a wall of photographers who take a million pictures of you as they yell out your name hoping you will look straight out at their camera.&nbsp; I was there right between Alicia Keyes and Diana Ross.&nbsp; That was pretty amazing!&nbsp;&nbsp;</font><br><font face="inherit"></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"></font><br><font face="inherit"></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><br></div><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" _mce_style="float: left; margin-right: 1em; text-align: left;" align="center" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto;"><tbody><tr><td _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ZKuryEMjmYM/TzrZ7dDw8PI/AAAAAAAAF5M/KYXd5MUTfO4/s1600/behind+alicia+keys.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ZKuryEMjmYM/TzrZ7dDw8PI/AAAAAAAAF5M/KYXd5MUTfO4/s1600/behind+alicia+keys.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-right: auto; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ZKuryEMjmYM/TzrZ7dDw8PI/AAAAAAAAF5M/KYXd5MUTfO4/s640/behind+alicia+keys.jpg" width="379" height="640" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ZKuryEMjmYM/TzrZ7dDw8PI/AAAAAAAAF5M/KYXd5MUTfO4/s320/behind+alicia+keys.jpg" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;"><font face="inherit" size="3">Jenny on the red carpet<br>behind Alicia Keys</font></td></tr></tbody></table><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b><i><font face="inherit" size="5"><br></font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b><i><font face="inherit" size="5">What thoughts and feelings did you have after finding out that you didn’t win the Grammy?</font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b><i><font face="inherit" size="5"><br></font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DLmWRKl7qcw/UAbrnuFCehI/AAAAAAAAAnQ/z-f8-vlpby0/s1600/Jennyquote.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DLmWRKl7qcw/UAbrnuFCehI/AAAAAAAAAnQ/z-f8-vlpby0/s1600/Jennyquote.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em; float: right;"><font face="inherit"></font></a><font face="inherit">I was REALLY disappointed that I did not win, and so I spent a bit of the night trying to keep my tears from ruining my makeup.&nbsp; However, I know that the Lord loves me and that He still has a plan for me.&nbsp; It is His plan, and He has never let me down.&nbsp; His plan seems to want me to stay humble, and deep down I am grateful for this.&nbsp; I am truly grateful that I was nominated.&nbsp; It has already opened up many doors for me, and has enabled my music to be heard by so many more people, many of whom are not of my faith.&nbsp; I hope to continue to build bridges between religious through the unifying power of good music.&nbsp; I hope to continue to record and perform and do what the Lord would have me do.&nbsp; I want to be an instrument in His Hands, and I don’t need a Grammy Award to do so.&nbsp;</font><br><font face="inherit"></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DLmWRKl7qcw/UAbrnuFCehI/AAAAAAAAAnQ/z-f8-vlpby0/s1600/Jennyquote.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DLmWRKl7qcw/UAbrnuFCehI/AAAAAAAAAnQ/z-f8-vlpby0/s1600/Jennyquote.jpg" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DLmWRKl7qcw/UAbrnuFCehI/AAAAAAAAAnQ/z-f8-vlpby0/s400/Jennyquote.jpg" width="253" height="400" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DLmWRKl7qcw/UAbrnuFCehI/AAAAAAAAAnQ/z-f8-vlpby0/s320/Jennyquote.jpg" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></a><font face="inherit"><br></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" align="center" _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><b><i><font face="inherit"><font size="5">What advice do you offer to other LDS youth who want to be musicians or artists?&nbsp;</font></font></i></b></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">I would encourage them to work as hard as they can now because they really need to get as much training as possible while they are young.&nbsp; I would plead with them to hold tightly to the rod.&nbsp; The Arts are a powerful medium, and Satan will tempt them so that He can use their talents for His purposes instead of for building the Kingdom.&nbsp; We can all go farther with the Lord’s help than without it.&nbsp; The Lord has a plan for each of us, and we just have to be ready and worthy for it.&nbsp; I have lived an incredible life, and I owe everything to the Lord.&nbsp; I KNOW that if I had not kept the commandments when I was young, I would not have been blessed with what I have now.&nbsp; I am so grateful to have a beautiful family and a firm testimony.&nbsp;<br><br><br><br><br></font><table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" _mce_style="float: left; margin-right: 1em; text-align: left;" align="center" style="padding: 6px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; margin-right: auto; margin-left: auto;"><tbody><tr><td _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YIFYHXJzm2I/TzrZ6-8FFlI/AAAAAAAAF5E/Lja0fzaqXBA/s1600/Jenny+and+Jane.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YIFYHXJzm2I/TzrZ6-8FFlI/AAAAAAAAF5E/Lja0fzaqXBA/s1600/Jenny+and+Jane.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-right: auto; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto;"><font face="inherit"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YIFYHXJzm2I/TzrZ6-8FFlI/AAAAAAAAF5E/Lja0fzaqXBA/s320/Jenny+and+Jane.jpg" width="320" height="318" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YIFYHXJzm2I/TzrZ6-8FFlI/AAAAAAAAF5E/Lja0fzaqXBA/s320/Jenny+and+Jane.jpg" style="cursor: move;" _mce_style="cursor: move;"></font></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" _mce_style="text-align: center;" style="font-size: 13px; padding-top: 4px; text-align: center;"><font face="inherit" size="3">Jenny with Jane Seymour</font></td></tr></tbody></table><font size="5"><br><br><div style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><b style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;">A Whole New World performed by Grammy nominee:&nbsp;</b></div></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><font face="inherit" size="6"><b>Jenny Oaks Baker</b></font></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium;"><font face="inherit" size="6"><b><br></b></font></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; text-align: start;" _mce_style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; text-align: start;"></div><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;<iframe height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/LpF6LMZuHKE?rel=0" frameborder="0" width="640" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/LpF6LMZuHKE?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" style="font-size: 10px;" _mce_style="font-size: 10px;"></iframe></font></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both;" _mce_style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both;"><br></p><p class="separator" style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; clear: both;"><a imageanchor="1" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-lv5TuY5-IeA/UkSMu97LaMI/AAAAAAAABJI/VvMziFnOOew/s1600/Jenny_Oaks_Baker_Violin2.jpg" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-lv5TuY5-IeA/UkSMu97LaMI/AAAAAAAABJI/VvMziFnOOew/s1600/Jenny_Oaks_Baker_Violin2.jpg" border="0" style="cursor: move;"></a></p><h3 style="text-align: start; box-sizing: border-box; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 22px; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); float: left; margin: 0px 5px 0px 0px;">BIO</h3><p style="margin: 0px; text-align: start; box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px;">Jenny Oaks Baker is one of America’s most accomplished classical violinists. She began playing the violin at age four and made her solo debut in 1983 when she was only eight years old. She received a bachelor’s degree in violin performance from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and a master of music degree from the Julliard School in New York City. Jenny has performed throughout the world and as a soloist with such orchestras as the National Symphony, Utah Symphony, San Diego Symphony, and the Jerusalem Symphony. She performed as a first violinist in the National Symphony Orchestra for seven years &nbsp;before resigning in 2007 to devote more time to her young family. Jenny and her husband, Matthew, reside outside of Washington, D.C. with their four children. Her albums include&nbsp;Silver Screen Serenade, Then Sings My Soul, Wish Upon a Star, and NOEL.</p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit"><br></font></p><p style="margin: 0px; font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: medium; text-align: start;"><font face="inherit">Jenny will perform in the following cities in 2013 for TOFW:&nbsp;</font><a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/14" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Kansas City, MO</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/20" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Columbia, SC</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/7" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Indianapolis, IN</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/21" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Arlington, TX</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/10" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Lethbridge, AB</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tofw.com/events/25" style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12.222222328186035px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(241, 86, 63); text-decoration: none;">Reno, NV</a></p></div> VIDEO: The Beauty of Inadequacies from "Our Best Bites" Bloggers http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Beauty-Inadequacies-Our-Best-Bites-Bloggers-Sara-Wells/s/461 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-Beauty-Inadequacies-Our-Best-Bites-Bloggers-Sara-Wells/s/461 Wed, 15 Feb 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <p>Before you post this, before you tweet that, and before you pin anything, enjoy this funny clip from our brand new presenters Sara Wells and Kate Jones.</p><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/H2bKwJJJTLU?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/H2bKwJJJTLU?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="480" width="640"></iframe></p> How's Your Heart? http://www.tofw.com/Hows-Your-Heart-Julie%20-de%20Azevedo%20Hanks/s/464 http://www.tofw.com/Hows-Your-Heart-Julie%20-de%20Azevedo%20Hanks/s/464 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-q8C0ssCu4ng/TzRPbkDOKdI/AAAAAAAAF3Q/GQhHyYfWsmc/s1600/How%27s+Your+Heart.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-q8C0ssCu4ng/TzRPbkDOKdI/AAAAAAAAF3Q/GQhHyYfWsmc/s1600/How%27s+Your+Heart.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-q8C0ssCu4ng/TzRPbkDOKdI/AAAAAAAAF3Q/GQhHyYfWsmc/s640/How%27s+Your+Heart.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-q8C0ssCu4ng/TzRPbkDOKdI/AAAAAAAAF3Q/GQhHyYfWsmc/s640/How%27s+Your+Heart.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="636"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GzqVg62LJ8E/TzRU6jttYdI/AAAAAAAAF3Y/H-18P6a73oo/s1600/conversing.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GzqVg62LJ8E/TzRU6jttYdI/AAAAAAAAF3Y/H-18P6a73oo/s1600/conversing.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GzqVg62LJ8E/TzRU6jttYdI/AAAAAAAAF3Y/H-18P6a73oo/s400/conversing.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GzqVg62LJ8E/TzRU6jttYdI/AAAAAAAAF3Y/H-18P6a73oo/s400/conversing.jpg" border="0" width="400" height="262"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Several years ago a friend looked me in the eyes and asked, “Julie, how’s your heart?” It took me back and I didn’t know how to respond. No one had ever asked me that question before. So, I responded to her question with another question (typical therapist tactic), “What exactly do you mean by that?” I asked. She responded, “How’s your heart? How’s your heart with your family? How’s your heart with Jesus Christ?”<br><br> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> I’m used to responding to the usual questions “How was your day?” “How’s your family?” “How’s work going?” and even, “How are you feeling?” but never before and never since have I been asked “How’s your heart?” It was such a powerful question that I continue to reflect on the question.&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>As sisters in the gospel, our work of salvation through Jesus Christ is about matters of the heart. Why then, don’t we talk more openly about our hearts? The Savior’s atonement and resurrection fulfilled the law of Moses and ended the burnt offerings, and replaced it with a sacrifice of a “broken heart and a contrite spirit” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/2-ne/2.27?lang=eng#26" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/2-ne/2.27?lang=eng#26" target="_blank">2 Nephi 2:27</a>). In <a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/matt/22.37?lang=eng#36" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/matt/22.37?lang=eng#36" target="_blank">Matthew 22:37</a> the Lord taught&nbsp;that the most important commandment is to “love the Lord thy God with all thy heart.” &nbsp;The Lord wants our hearts.</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>So, let me ask you, “How’s <i>your</i> heart?” Really. How is your heart? Not your family, your day, your job, your schooling, but your heart. The scriptures mention many possible states of our hearts. Which one best describes your heart right now? <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-aci6C8NiNnc/TzRVQYee0rI/AAAAAAAAF3g/soG0BWyq_QQ/s1600/ponder.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-aci6C8NiNnc/TzRVQYee0rI/AAAAAAAAF3g/soG0BWyq_QQ/s1600/ponder.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-aci6C8NiNnc/TzRVQYee0rI/AAAAAAAAF3g/soG0BWyq_QQ/s320/ponder.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-aci6C8NiNnc/TzRVQYee0rI/AAAAAAAAF3g/soG0BWyq_QQ/s320/ponder.jpg" border="0" width="213" height="320"></a>Pure:&nbsp; "for this is Zion—the pure in heart” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/97.21?lang=eng#20" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/97.21?lang=eng#20" target="_blank">D&amp;C97:21</a>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>Proud: “thou shalt not be proud in thy heart,” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/42.40?lang=eng#39" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/42.40?lang=eng#39" target="_blank">D&amp;C 42:40</a>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> Failing:&nbsp; “men’s hearts shall fail them” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/88.91?lang=eng#90" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/88.91?lang=eng#90" target="_blank">D&amp;C 88:91</a>) </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>Pondering:&nbsp; “receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/moro/10.3?lang=eng#2" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/moro/10.3?lang=eng#2" target="_blank">Moroni10:3</a>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>Cheerful: “do these things … with cheerful hearts and countenances” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/59.15?lang=eng#14" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/59.15?lang=eng#14" target="_blank">D&amp;C 59:15</a>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>Prepared: “prepare their hearts to receive the word” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/alma/16.16?lang=eng#15" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/alma/16.16?lang=eng#15" target="_blank">Alma 16:16</a>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>Hard: “harden not their hearts” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/3-ne/21.22?lang=eng#21" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/3-ne/21.22?lang=eng#21" target="_blank">3 Nephi 21:22</a>) </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>Broken: “He healeth the broken in heart” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/ps/147.3?lang=eng#2" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/ps/147.3?lang=eng#2" target="_blank">Psalms 147:3</a>)</div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <br>In a world obsessed with appearance and status, it’s easy to overlook our hearts and focus primarily on external things. “For the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance but the Lord looketh on the heart” (<a href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/1-sam/16.7?lang=eng#6" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/1-sam/16.7?lang=eng#6" target="_blank">1 Samuel 16:7</a>). Let’s start talking more about how our hearts are doing. I challenge you to ask your family, friends, and neighbors the simple question, “How’s your heart?” and watch their confused and stunned faces. Who knows? Maybe they’ll even blog about your conversation in a few years.<br><br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> <div class="MsoNormal"> </div> What LOVE Looks Like {Link Party} http://www.tofw.com/What-LOVE-Looks-Link-Party-TOFW/s/467 http://www.tofw.com/What-LOVE-Looks-Link-Party-TOFW/s/467 Fri, 10 Feb 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FaOkvc2Kglo/TzL5DLdVtsI/AAAAAAAAF1w/O8lXuM-KtXQ/s1600/love%2Blooks%2Blike%2Bhero.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FaOkvc2Kglo/TzL5DLdVtsI/AAAAAAAAF1w/O8lXuM-KtXQ/s1600/love%2Blooks%2Blike%2Bhero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FaOkvc2Kglo/TzL5DLdVtsI/AAAAAAAAF1w/O8lXuM-KtXQ/s640/love%2Blooks%2Blike%2Bhero.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-FaOkvc2Kglo/TzL5DLdVtsI/AAAAAAAAF1w/O8lXuM-KtXQ/s640/love%2Blooks%2Blike%2Bhero.jpg" border="0" height="438" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">L-O-V-E<br><br>Just four little letters that can mean SO many things. <br><br>What do YOU think of when you hear the word "Love"? Is it a person? An act of kindness? Your job? Chocolate?!? <br><br>Well, Time Out for Women wants to know What LOVE Looks Like to you, so join our February Link Party &amp; you will be entered to win a package full of products we love! </span></p> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oLJTSUukHgw/TzMBP0C_QeI/AAAAAAAAF2A/5NiO9ROJh1A/s1600/hearts.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oLJTSUukHgw/TzMBP0C_QeI/AAAAAAAAF2A/5NiO9ROJh1A/s1600/hearts.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oLJTSUukHgw/TzMBP0C_QeI/AAAAAAAAF2A/5NiO9ROJh1A/s200/hearts.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-oLJTSUukHgw/TzMBP0C_QeI/AAAAAAAAF2A/5NiO9ROJh1A/s200/hearts.jpg" border="0" height="136" width="200"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><p style="padding-left: 30px; text-align: left;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><b><br>Here's how to participate:</b></span><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"></span> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><br><br>1.<b> Post a picture on your blog</b> that represents LOVE to you. It can be of the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the word, an image of someone or something you love, your favorite valentine, etc. <br></span><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><br>2. Make sure your post<b> includes a link back to this story</b> on TOFW.com. Just copy and paste the code in the text box below.<br><div style="clear: both;"></div><div style="float: left; margin: 0 0 0 200px;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="http://tofw.com/story/467-what-love-looks-like-link-party" ><img src="http://tofw.com/images/tofw_badge1.jpg" alt="TOFW" /></a><br><br><textarea cols="30" rows="6"><a href="http://tofw.com/story/467-what-love-looks-like-link-party" ><img alt="TOFW" src="http://tofw.com/images/tofw_badge1.jpg"></a></textarea></div><div style="clear: both;"></div><br></span> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;">3. Click on the text below that says <b>"Click here to enter"</b></span><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> and fill out the information (your name, the address of your post, and a thumbnail image of what you love). Your thumbnail will display below and will direct everyone who clicks on it back to your blog.</span></p><ul> </ul><p> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span> <span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"><br>It's that simple. We can't wait to see your photos! The winner will be announced on TOFW.com on Friday, February 17.<br><br>P.S. If you don't have a blog, you can still participate by leaving a comment below.<br></p><script src="http://www.linkytools.com/thumbnail_linky_include.aspx?id=130289" type="text/javascript"></script> A New Kind of Valentine's Love http://www.tofw.com/New-Kind-Valentines-Love-DeAnne-Flynn/s/459 http://www.tofw.com/New-Kind-Valentines-Love-DeAnne-Flynn/s/459 Mon, 06 Feb 2012 09:11:00 -0700 <div> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vfOIdCkMfMQ/Ty_5KGf88xI/AAAAAAAAFzA/BD-3YQChXrY/s1600/reporter.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vfOIdCkMfMQ/Ty_5KGf88xI/AAAAAAAAFzA/BD-3YQChXrY/s1600/reporter.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vfOIdCkMfMQ/Ty_5KGf88xI/AAAAAAAAFzA/BD-3YQChXrY/s640/reporter.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vfOIdCkMfMQ/Ty_5KGf88xI/AAAAAAAAFzA/BD-3YQChXrY/s640/reporter.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNoSpacing"> <br>I was once asked to interview a highly respected woman for an important video project. This production was to be a motivational presentation for a large annual women’s event in my area. And as I began the interview it became immediately apparent that it would <i>not </i>be a quick and easy assignment because this woman’s personality, by all accounts, appeared to be largely...well, dull.<br><br> </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: justify;" _mce_style="text-align: justify;"> All during the interview I can remember thinking to myself,&nbsp; “Wow, I wonder why a more lively candidate wasn’t chosen for this piece?” Her responses were each so lackluster that I began subconsciously energizing my questioning tactics, hoping to spark some more enthusiastic and interesting answers. </div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: justify;" _mce_style="text-align: justify;"> <br>Years later, through a small twist of divine fate, I was asked to direct the music at this well-loved woman’s funeral. And to my amazement I learned that she was, indeed, a genuinely extraordinary woman. <br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: justify;" _mce_style="text-align: justify;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YELd6IwwX1I/Ty_580Eb_RI/AAAAAAAAFzI/GIPb9BiJzBg/s1600/thoughtful.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YELd6IwwX1I/Ty_580Eb_RI/AAAAAAAAFzI/GIPb9BiJzBg/s1600/thoughtful.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YELd6IwwX1I/Ty_580Eb_RI/AAAAAAAAFzI/GIPb9BiJzBg/s320/thoughtful.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-YELd6IwwX1I/Ty_580Eb_RI/AAAAAAAAFzI/GIPb9BiJzBg/s320/thoughtful.jpg" border="0" height="320" width="257"></a>After losing her only child in a tragic accident when the girl was merely a teen, this gentle woman chose forgiveness and peace rather than bitterness and resentment. For years she worked long hours, yet she decided to enjoy her job and those with whom she associated instead of feeling weighed down and overwhelmed by her lot in life. She served as a senior missionary in a country where hardly anyone showed an interest in her message, yet she remained cheerful and optimistic, consistently seeking out and remembering the “one.”</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal"> <br>As I sat listening to the inspiring triumphs of this humble, unassuming woman, I was struck by both awe and shame because I had missed the whole point of my previous interview with this outwardly unexciting woman. I viewed her with only my worldly eyes and stony heart instead of seeking to <i>recognize </i>who she actually was…an angel, an example, and an honest-to-goodness believer.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal"> <br>I thought of the prophet Samuel, when the Lord said to him, "<i>Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature... for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance but the Lord looketh on the heart." (1 Samuel 16:7) <br><br></i></div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-PJIj3PtUqNo/Ty_69y0wR5I/AAAAAAAAFzQ/-OpCjpT9TEY/s1600/heart.jpg" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-PJIj3PtUqNo/Ty_69y0wR5I/AAAAAAAAFzQ/-OpCjpT9TEY/s1600/heart.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-PJIj3PtUqNo/Ty_69y0wR5I/AAAAAAAAFzQ/-OpCjpT9TEY/s320/heart.jpg" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-PJIj3PtUqNo/Ty_69y0wR5I/AAAAAAAAFzQ/-OpCjpT9TEY/s320/heart.jpg" border="0" height="345" width="343"></a>Regrettably, I think we're often tempted to take one quick look at another person and think we have them all figured out. We may unfairly judge them; even dismiss them, because they simply don't seem similar to us, or because we just don't have enough patience to try and understand them.<i> </i>Then sadly, we miss out on those potential friendships and on beautiful life lessons. I'm also quite certain we miss out on some very sweet blessings that our loving Heavenly Father had waiting just for us.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal"> <br>Happily, I have re-discovered that merely looking upon “countenances” has proved to be occasionally misleading.</div> <div style="text-align: left;" _mce_style="text-align: left;" class="MsoNormal"> <br>So I'm now trying MUCH HARDER to look upon <i>hearts. <br><br>How have you seen this principle improve your relationships?<br><br><br></i></div> Show the Love http://www.tofw.com/Show-Love-TOFW/s/455 http://www.tofw.com/Show-Love-TOFW/s/455 Wed, 01 Feb 2012 00:02:00 -0700 <div> by TOFW <br /> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; color: black; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; color: black; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HLIq_uv2Ibg/TyhCprGtoOI/AAAAAAAAFxI/bu2C4_ZeWuE/s1600/show+the+love+hero.jpg" _mce_href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HLIq_uv2Ibg/TyhCprGtoOI/AAAAAAAAFxI/bu2C4_ZeWuE/s1600/show+the+love+hero.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HLIq_uv2Ibg/TyhCprGtoOI/AAAAAAAAFxI/bu2C4_ZeWuE/s640/show+the+love+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HLIq_uv2Ibg/TyhCprGtoOI/AAAAAAAAFxI/bu2C4_ZeWuE/s640/show+the+love+hero.jpg" border="0" width="640" height="384"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> Love is shared with different people in different ways.</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <br>With Valentine’s Day coming up, we asked a few of our Time Out for Women presenters how they&nbsp; “Show the Love” to people around them.&nbsp; Read the fun things they had to say:<br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aj4aZfEueCQ/TyhD1KygsII/AAAAAAAAFxQ/AKorcjNFmbw/s1600/Whitney+Permann+&amp;+Sisters.JPG" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aj4aZfEueCQ/TyhD1KygsII/AAAAAAAAFxQ/AKorcjNFmbw/s1600/Whitney+Permann+&amp;+Sisters.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aj4aZfEueCQ/TyhD1KygsII/AAAAAAAAFxQ/AKorcjNFmbw/s640/Whitney+Permann+&amp;+Sisters.JPG" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Aj4aZfEueCQ/TyhD1KygsII/AAAAAAAAFxQ/AKorcjNFmbw/s640/Whitney+Permann+&amp;+Sisters.JPG" border="0" width="640" height="512"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://tofw.com/author/10" _mce_href="../../../author/10">Whitney Permann</a> (from Mercy River)</div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit; margin-bottom: 12pt;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit; margin-bottom: 12pt;"> <i><br>I don't live close to any of my siblings, and they are all younger than me and in a "different stage" of life. This, year, I have been impressed to send frequent, simple text messages to them to share cute anecdotes, random pictures of my kids, or a few words of encouragement. I hope this can help them know that I am thinking of them and love them even though we don't talk a lot. <br><br><br></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hve6FwvUFi4/TyhD832IU_I/AAAAAAAAFxY/uN8p27pu0sI/s1600/Carmen%27s+boys.JPG" _mce_href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hve6FwvUFi4/TyhD832IU_I/AAAAAAAAFxY/uN8p27pu0sI/s1600/Carmen%27s+boys.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hve6FwvUFi4/TyhD832IU_I/AAAAAAAAFxY/uN8p27pu0sI/s320/Carmen%27s+boys.JPG" _mce_src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Hve6FwvUFi4/TyhD832IU_I/AAAAAAAAFxY/uN8p27pu0sI/s320/Carmen%27s+boys.JPG" border="0" width="240" height="320"></a><a href="http://tofw.com/author/48" _mce_href="../../../author/48">Carmen Rasmusen Herbert</a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <i><br>"To a Child, Love is Spelled T-I-M-E."</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <i> <br>No matter what else I get accomplished during the day, I never regret the time I spend playing with my kids. Not one single minute. Even if the dishes stay waiting by the sink, the laundry stays in the dryer (for another week) and the floors stay speckled with crumbs. Taking time to give my boys their favorite thing-ME-always gives me that settled feeling of peace and satisfaction when I lay down at night. I've found that no other pursuit is more worthy of my attention than showing my children I'm here, I care, and I love them. <br><br><br><br><br><br></i></div> <table class="tr-caption-container mceItemTable" style="color: black; float: left; font-family: inherit; margin-right: 1em; text-align: left;" _mce_style="color: black; float: left; font-family: inherit; margin-right: 1em; text-align: left;" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"><tbody> <tr><td style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vOxr3TstZwI/TyhElMKN1qI/AAAAAAAAFxg/l97vRrF-nCU/s1600/05-Merrilee+girl.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vOxr3TstZwI/TyhElMKN1qI/AAAAAAAAFxg/l97vRrF-nCU/s1600/05-Merrilee+girl.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" _mce_style="clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vOxr3TstZwI/TyhElMKN1qI/AAAAAAAAFxg/l97vRrF-nCU/s320/05-Merrilee+girl.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vOxr3TstZwI/TyhElMKN1qI/AAAAAAAAFxg/l97vRrF-nCU/s320/05-Merrilee+girl.jpg" border="0" width="211" height="320"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></td></tr> <tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;" _mce_style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><i>Check out those ears!!! &nbsp;4th grade photo. <br>I sewed that outfit all by myself and was so proud.</i></span></td></tr> </tbody></table> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://tofw.com/author/18" _mce_href="../../../author/18"><br>Merrilee Boyack</a> <i><br><br>My goal this year is to work on being kind. &nbsp;I've discovered that one of the kindest things I can do is listen. &nbsp;I'm not very good at that! &nbsp;So I just keep thinking the whole time, "Merrilee, be kind. &nbsp;Keep listening. &nbsp;Be kind." &nbsp;It has really helped a LOT!</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <i> </i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> </div> <div style="color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <i><br><br><br><br><br>OK, more current picture below . . . with my grandkids, Keaton and Linnea </i></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-k2wJXKKw9Ms/TyhFLki5GII/AAAAAAAAFxw/eZhA6mC3jbw/s1600/merrilee+square.jpg" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-k2wJXKKw9Ms/TyhFLki5GII/AAAAAAAAFxw/eZhA6mC3jbw/s1600/merrilee+square.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-k2wJXKKw9Ms/TyhFLki5GII/AAAAAAAAFxw/eZhA6mC3jbw/s400/merrilee+square.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-k2wJXKKw9Ms/TyhFLki5GII/AAAAAAAAFxw/eZhA6mC3jbw/s400/merrilee+square.jpg" border="0" width="310" height="311"></a></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"> </span></div> <div class="separator" style="clear: both; color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;" _mce_style="clear: both; color: black; font-family: inherit; text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1BvhGmp-BVw/TyhFpzpVQPI/AAAAAAAAFyA/2uoOugKoo_4/s1600/belcher+fam+square.jpg" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1BvhGmp-BVw/TyhFpzpVQPI/AAAAAAAAFyA/2uoOugKoo_4/s1600/belcher+fam+square.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><br><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1BvhGmp-BVw/TyhFpzpVQPI/AAAAAAAAFyA/2uoOugKoo_4/s320/belcher+fam+square.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1BvhGmp-BVw/TyhFpzpVQPI/AAAAAAAAFyA/2uoOugKoo_4/s320/belcher+fam+square.jpg" border="0" width="220" height="220"></a></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <a href="http://tofw.com/author/25" _mce_href="../../../author/25"><br><br><br>Kris Belcher</a> <br><br><i>I’ve really been trying hard lately to verbally acknowledge each thing my husband does for me. &nbsp;Also, when there is a way I need him to support me emotionally; I am making an effort to express my feelings without coming across like a victim. &nbsp;It’s tough stuff!!!! &nbsp;But, I am trying. &nbsp;I think it is helping me feel more love for him.<br><br><br></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="color: black; font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="color: black; font-family: inherit;"> <br><br>How do YOU “Show the LOVE”?&nbsp; We want to hear—share below! <br><br><br><br></div> <div class="MsoNormal" style="font-family: inherit;" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"> </div> VIDEO: What Would You Ask For? http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-Would-You-Ask-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/447 http://www.tofw.com/VIDEO-What-Would-You-Ask-Laurel-Christensen%20Day/s/447 Wed, 01 Feb 2012 00:01:00 -0700 <div> </div> <p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/_kAgyzYN_9A?rel=0" _mce_src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/_kAgyzYN_9A?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" width="480" frameborder="0" height="360"></iframe></p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p></p> Finding My Way http://www.tofw.com/Finding-My-Way-Dean-Hughes/s/453 http://www.tofw.com/Finding-My-Way-Dean-Hughes/s/453 Mon, 30 Jan 2012 00:00:00 -0700 <div> </div> <mce:style type="text/css"><!-- .msoNormal { margin: 15px; } --></mce:style><mce:style type="text/css" _mce_bogus="1"><!-- .msoNormal { margin: 15px; } --></mce:style><mce:style type="text/css" _mce_bogus="1"><!-- .msoNormal { margin: 15px; } --></mce:style><mce:style type="text/css" _mce_bogus="1"><!-- .msoNormal { margin: 15px; } --></mce:style><mce:style type="text/css" _mce_bogus="1"><!-- .msoNormal { margin: 15px; } --></mce:style><style type="text/css" _mce_bogus="1"><!-- .msoNormal { margin: 15px; } --></style> <div style="text-align: center;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="text-align: center;" align="center"> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9lfRwTSF_-8/TyMp0G7MfwI/AAAAAAAAFvg/p-btf5XKmqQ/s1600/finding+way+hero.jpg" _mce_style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9lfRwTSF_-8/TyMp0G7MfwI/AAAAAAAAFvg/p-btf5XKmqQ/s1600/finding+way+hero.jpg"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9lfRwTSF_-8/TyMp0G7MfwI/AAAAAAAAFvg/p-btf5XKmqQ/s640/finding+way+hero.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9lfRwTSF_-8/TyMp0G7MfwI/AAAAAAAAFvg/p-btf5XKmqQ/s640/finding+way+hero.jpg" border="0" height="426" width="640"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div></div> <div class="MsoNormal"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">I worry about myself.&nbsp; I want to be guided by the Spirit, but sometimes I wait for promptings, feel nothing very certain, and move forward with tentative steps, just hoping that I’m doing the right thing.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">We live in complicated secular world, where “feelings” are often disdained as a source of knowledge.&nbsp; That means we all have to decide whether we’re willing to trust spiritual promptings, and then we have to step forward with faith even when our tendency is to fear what lies ahead of us. <br></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"><br>Elder Bednar has taught us that the priesthood holder who bestows the Gift of the Holy Ghost does not “give” the gift; he commands the newly baptized person to “receive” it.&nbsp;&nbsp; The receiver must work to activate the influence of the Holy Ghost, and then to keep the Spirit near (“<a href="http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2010/10/receive-the-holy-ghost?lang=eng&amp;query=receive+holy+ghost" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2010/10/receive-the-holy-ghost?lang=eng&amp;query=receive+holy+ghost">Receive the Holy Ghost</a>,” October 2010 General Conference).&nbsp; It is, in other words, a life-long process to acquire and retain the gift of the Holy Ghost. <br><br></span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div style="clear: both; text-align: left;" class="separator"><a style="margin-bottom: 1em; float: left; clear: left; margin-right: 1em;" href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TQxZjdThYcQ/TyMnd14Eg9I/AAAAAAAAFvY/lbbkKyrcjlQ/s1600/elderly+man+discouraged.jpg" _mce_style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TQxZjdThYcQ/TyMnd14Eg9I/AAAAAAAAFvY/lbbkKyrcjlQ/s1600/elderly+man+discouraged.jpg"><img src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TQxZjdThYcQ/TyMnd14Eg9I/AAAAAAAAFvY/lbbkKyrcjlQ/s400/elderly+man+discouraged.jpg" _mce_src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-TQxZjdThYcQ/TyMnd14Eg9I/AAAAAAAAFvY/lbbkKyrcjlQ/s400/elderly+man+discouraged.jpg" border="0" height="246" width="300"></a><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">I believe that.&nbsp; But here I am in my usual state: feeling rather guilty, aware that I’m not charging very fast up the road to perfection, and frankly, starting to believe in my old age that I may never become as spiritual as I’ve always wanted to be.</span></span></div></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"><br>But you know what?&nbsp; I don’t think we do ourselves a favor when we assume that we must walk this earth in a constant state of religious euphoria.<b><span style="font-weight: bold;" _mce_style="font-weight: bold;">&nbsp; </span></b>President Boyd K. Packer has taught us not to expect constant communication from the Holy Ghost.&nbsp;&nbsp; In a <i><span style="font-style: italic;" _mce_style="font-style: italic;">Liahona </span></i>article, he said:<br><br></span></span></div> <div style="font-family: inherit;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="font-family: inherit;"><span style="font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"></span></span> <blockquote class="tr_bq"><i><span style="font-family: Georgia,'Times New Roman',serif; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Georgia,&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;">“I have learned that strong, impressive spiritual experiences do not come to us very frequently.&nbsp; And when they do, they are generally for our own edification,</span></span></span><span style="font-size: large;" _mce_style="font-size: large;"> instruction, or correction.”</span></i></blockquote></div> <div style="margin-left: 0.5in;" class="MsoNormal" _mce_style="margin-left: 0.5in;"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"><br>So when the spirit communicates with us, how does that happen?&nbsp; President Packer went on to say:</span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;"></span></span> <blockquote><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">“The spirit does not get our attention by shouting or shaking us with a heavy hand.&nbsp; Rather, it whispers.&nbsp; It caresses so gently that if we are preoccupied we may not feel it at all . . . .&nbsp; Occasionally, it will press just firmly enough for us to pay heed.&nbsp; But most of the time, if we do not heed the gentle feeling, the Spirit will withdraw and wait until we come seeking and listening and say in our manner and expression, like Samuel of ancient times, ‘Speak, Lord, for thy servant heareth’ (“<a href="http://www.lds.org/liahona/1983/07/the-candle-of-the-lord?lang=eng&amp;query=candle+lord" _mce_href="http://www.lds.org/liahona/1983/07/the-candle-of-the-lord?lang=eng&amp;query=candle+lord">Candle of the Lord</a>,” <i><span style="font-style: italic;" _mce_style="font-style: italic;">Liahona, </span></i>July, 1983).”<br></span></span></blockquote></div> <div class="MsoNormal"></div> <div class="MsoNormal"> <div style="text-align: center; clear: both;" class="separator" _mce_style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a style="margin-bottom: 1em; float: right; margin-left: 1em; clear: right;" href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jT3Wnmd4-Hg/TyMuu6IlxZI/AAAAAAAAFvo/QL1L-4itjtY/s1600/look+up.jpg" _mce_style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;" imageanchor="1" _mce_href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jT3Wnmd4-Hg/TyMuu6IlxZI/AAAAAAAAFvo/QL1L-4itjtY/s1600/look+up.jpg"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jT3Wnmd4-Hg/TyMuu6IlxZI/AAAAAAAAFvo/QL1L-4itjtY/s400/look+up.jpg" _mce_src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-jT3Wnmd4-Hg/TyMuu6IlxZI/AAAAAAAAFvo/QL1L-4itjtY/s400/look+up.jpg" border="0" height="400" width="265"></a><br _mce_bogus="1"></div><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;" _mce_style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;"><span style="font-size: 12pt;" _mce_style="font-size: 12pt;">President Packer’s words have helped me a great deal. They make me feel that it’s okay not to feel guided in everything I do.&nbsp; President Packer doesn’t talk about transcendent experiences or stunning revelations.&nbsp; He tells us to humble ourselves.&nbsp; That’s not easy for me.&nbsp; But at least I know where the interference is coming from.&nbsp; Of all the killers of the Spirit, pride seems to be the greatest culprit. <br><br></span></span>&l