Thursday, 29 May 2008

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

Most people believe the Headless Horseman got him. . .
Do you?
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Jaclyn was assigned a terrific part in the school play this year. She played Mrs. Trenkler, an aunt to Katrina Van Tassel of Sleepy Hollow. As a visitor to the town, Mrs. Trenkler both participates as the story unfolds and narrates her observations to the audience at the opening and closing of the play. The part suited Jaclyn perfectly.
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I volunteered to sew costumes for the play a couple of months ago, and then I volunteered Jaclyn to sew her own costume. She wasn't super happy about that, and when she first attacked the project it was miserable for both of us, but at least I had the conviction that sewing her own costume was good for her (a vision she lacked).
Once the cutting-out was done we both started having fun, and Jaclyn won the admiration of her friends in the play when they found out that she had sewn her own costume. She was also rewarded with extra recognition in the program by having her name additionally listed in the "Costume Crew"..

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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow was another 'last' for Jaclyn in this school.
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Tuesday, 27 May 2008

SPT: Something Blue

When I drink milk I'm a skim milk girl. I don't drink it because it's low fat - I drink it because it tastes better! Skim milk doesn't coat my throat on the way down. I also like that it gets so much colder than 1% (or 2% or homogenized).
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Christy (Ken's sister) calls skim milk *blue milk* partly because skim comes out of a jug with a blue label, and partly because she thinks that skim milk has a slightly blue tinge to it.
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(looks white to me)

Monday, 26 May 2008

52 Blessings: Rain

I can be grateful for rain even after the 8th day in a row; perhaps it is a ripple effect from all of the fasting and praying for rain that I've done in the past.

Sunday, 25 May 2008

Greenbriar Horse Show

Yesterday morning around 5:30 am I was wondering what happened this year that I was up so early to go to a barn on a Saturday? I think what happened was that Carmen loves riding a little more than I expected when I consented to explore this interest in the fall. She lives from week to week, from riding lesson to riding lesson, with Mondays at the barn being the highlight of her week. Carmen really liked the idea of participating in a jumping show this spring, so we shortened her lesson year by a few weeks and put the money saved on lessons towards entering the Greenbriar School Show.
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It was my first horse show ever, as well as Carmen's, so I asked a couple of the YW in my ward who ride what they could tell me about getting ready for a horse show. Most of their advice was fashion advice. She needed riding pants (check), tall English boots (uh-oh, her cowboy boots wouldn't cut it), a black helmet (check), a blouse (check), a horsey pin for her throat (didn't have one of those), and a dark blazer (nope again). The final advice I got on Carmen's attire was that she should have her hair in a net, and not a hair out of place. I was glad to find one aspect of show-outfitting I would be able to solve at the dollar store. I got to work phoning around to see what we could borrow, and therefore avoid buying. One of Carmen's riding & school friends, Marguerite, loaned us black riding gloves (I forgot to mention them in my original list) and rubber riding boots.
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Carmen wasn't initially thrilled with the rubber boots, but after I Armor All'd them she loved them, and they were so dark and shiny they looked better than most of the leather boots we saw at the show. Woo-hoo! I felt pretty brilliant with my Armor All idea.
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Carmen's school & church friend, Emma, loaned us her dark brown blazer. Carmen has a really cute baby blue blazer, but our teacher told us we absolutely had to have something dark. I thought it was silly, but when we got to the show and Carmen was standing amongst all those black and navy blue blazers I could see that Gail (our teacher) had been right.

Carmen's riding friend, Kennedy, bought a crop (a short whip) for the show and she was all too happy to let Carmen use it.

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I was wrong about not having a horsey pin. Carmen remembered this horse button cover that was hiding in my bedside table. I have a set of cowboy button covers that I bought long ago for Calgary Stampede week which I had completely forgotten about. Fortunately Carmen found them during one of her (I'm sure many) tours through my personal stuff, and she remembered the silver horse, which looked darling on her at the show.


At one point Steven picked up on our show-outfitting efforts and asked, "So the horse show is half fashion show???"

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Carmen has never been so concerned about her own grooming as she was for the horse show yesterday. Her hair was really cute in the net over her bun. She even had me put her hair in the net again today for church.


Carmen rode in four jumping classes (18 inch rails - scary video to come when it is available to me after June 5th) and she placed 5th in two of her classes. That was totally unexpected and the cherry on top of a fun morning for Carmen.

Chinatown Field Trip

It turns out that going to Chinatown is a super popular field trip with parents. To the point that we had a 2:1 ratio of kids to adults on Thursday - unheard of in sixth grade! I had planned to carpool downtown with a couple of other moms, and I gave them 15 minutes past the time they were supposed to pick me up, but then I left a note on the door and went by myself. I think the drop in center experience has made me snap a little on punctuality. I was slightly concerned that I'd made a social blunder with my school mommy relationships by going ahead, but I figured (and was right) that they'd be okay with it. As it was I was barely on time, well really, 5 minutes late, but I arrived at the meeting place at the same time as the bus of students. The moms I ditched were 45 minutes late! It can happen to anyone, but my kids aren't used to it happening to me and I'm glad Steven didn't spend the first 45 minutes of the field trip wondering where I was.



We toured around outside for a while. This was the only photo I took. Steven and his partner were supposed to snap photos for a photo essay assignment following the trip to Chinatown.




When it was time for us to head to the restaurant for lunch some fish were being unloaded from a truck and they were still alive! It was a very authentic Chinatown experience for the boys with me to see this fish flopping around a little on the sidewalk. Steven got a great picture here.
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Our lunch destination. The kids at my table were all very adventurous with the foods they tried. They all gave the mystery foods a shot instead of sticking to the ginger chicken and rice.



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Much of the field trip was like a shopping day on vacation in another country. We have the 3rd largest Chinatown in Canada - who knew?
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The Chinese herbs shop was fascinating with all the bulk jars; they even had dried seahorses. Unfortunately the shop owner wasn't friendly at all, and didn't share what illness the seahorses were supposed to treat.


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At the end of the day we went to the Chinese Cultural Center. The kids learned the symbolism of the colors and graphics painted on the ceiling.
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This photo of stone horse statues is one of Steven's favorites, other than the photos of his friends kissing lion statues, posing holding girls clothes in front of them and so forth - I don't think Steve's friends have any pictures of him being quite that silly. Thank goodness.
We had a great time together; Steven even hugged me at the end of the day (in public) and thanked me for coming.

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

SPT: Teacher Appreciation Project 2008

Last night as I was making dinner Ken phoned me from his car and asked if I wanted him to pick up some Chinese food. I, of course, said yes, and packed up my dinner preparations.
Today, with dinner taken care of, I got in a couple of hours on my blog publishing project. I have tried Blurb, but I haven't been totally happy with the *slurp* or the Blurb templates, so I'm copying each post to Microsoft word and I'm going to print it from there. I think the final result will turn out looking more like my blog format which I hope I'll like in the end.

At 2:30 I went to the school to unload the geraniums that my dad (and Carmen) grew to give the staff at our school appreciation lunch we are holding tomorrow.

I borrowed some help from 3rd grade, and the kids unloaded my van in about 5 minutes.

Tomorrow Carmen is going to present the plants to the staff. She's going to say:
"My grandpa and I grew these geraniums for you to thank you for all of your hard work. My grandpa hopes the plants will help Jaclyn, Steven, Chloe and Me pass this year."
My dad has totally been teasing my kids that he is trying to help them get promoted to the next grade at school in the fall, and I'm sure the teachers will think that is funny.
After all the geraniums were stowed away in the school I had half an hour till dismissal, so I hurried home and vacuumed out the back of the van.
While I was vacuuming I tossed a dozen frozen cookie balls in the oven for after school snack. I know this isn't a new idea, but I have to say how much I love having frozen cookie dough. I use my small cookie scoop and fill a tray with cookie balls, freeze them on the tray, and then transfer them to Ziploc bags after they're frozen. When we want some cookies we space a few out on a cookie sheet, and by the time the oven has preheated the cookies have defrosted enough that they require no additional baking time. I just love always having fresh baked cookies.

Monday, 19 May 2008

Use your head

Our family owns 22 helmets. I didn't grow up with helmets and I have no idea of what would be considered normal for a family of 4 kids, but 22 seems high to me. Either we are very very safe or we are very very risky.
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5 bike helmets (the floral helmet is by a company called "Nut Case" - Ha!) and 1 horse riding helmet

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3 full face bike helmets, 5 standard bike helmets & 1 dirtbike helmet
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2 hockey helmets
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5 ski helmets and 1 blank spot
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Ken got his ski helmet for his birthday this year from Chloe, who I'm sure will take care of me at my next birthday, but right now I'm the only one in the family that doesn't have a ski helmet. In fact, I don't think any of the helmets in this house belong to me. What does that say? Is it the more helmets you own the more safety concious you are, or is it the fewer helmets you own the less of a risk taker you are?
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Sunday, 18 May 2008

52 Blessings: Warm Summer Nights

It's funny (and unusual) that I don't find myself wishing I lived in a warmer climate during the dead of winter. I tolerate it. Rather, it's during the summer that I daydream of moving to Northern California to enjoy warm weather year round.
I went out grocery shopping last night and the air felt so great. Jaclyn told me recently that evening is her favorite time of day in the summer - warm, but without the sun beating down on her. I have to agree: I love warm summer evenings.

Thursday, 15 May 2008

Jaclyn

Jaclyn had Track & Field this week. She's been most successful in the past in medium distance running events, so I was more than a little surprised when she signed up for javelin this year.
Her explanation: Come on, how many times in your life do you get to throw a giant spear?
I love her answer, it contains a Carpe Diem sentiment that I hope she keeps.
In other Jaclyn news, she found out today that her teachers have selected her to be valedictorian, which is something she was hoping for.
The 9th grade students nominate each other for the opportunity to give various speeches at grad: toast to the parents, toast to the teachers, blessing over the banquet, and to be the valedictorian. When Jaclyn first told me about this I thought it was strange. You have to audition for valedictorian? Isn't that something you earn by your academic achievement and participation in school activities? But the more I thought about it, the more the audition made sense to me, at least from an event standpoint. The teachers are ensuring some quality control on the speeches, very understandable for a jr. high grad.
Jaclyn's hope to *win* the spot of valedictorian was enhanced by her unsolicited nomination to give the blessing over the banquet. The students failed to nominate their friends for this position (no surprise there), so one of the teachers nominated Jaclyn and her good friend Megan (both LDS). Jaclyn knew she wouldn't be selected for both, therefore she hoped all the more to 'give the commencement speech' (a phrase Ken coined rather than say valedictorian, I already explained our issue with auditioning for a traditionally academically earned title).
Jaclyn is doubly, no possibly triply happy. She doesn't have to offer a public prayer at grad, she is the valedictorian, and she gets to give the commencement speech.

Tuesday, 13 May 2008

SPT: Something New

Mother's Day morning as I headed downstairs for breakfast and presents (we don't do breakfast in bed - Ken thinks the idea is disgusting), anyhow, just before I went down Ken said to me, "I'm going to be interested in what Chloe says when you open the gift she chose for you. I don't know if there's a reason behind it or if it was just random." Hmmm.
I was delighted to open a new ice cream scoop from Chloe. I said, "Thank you so much for the new ice cream scoop, Coco." Steven answered for her, "It's not an ice cream scoop it's a cookie scoop!"
A-ha! I use a small cookie dough scoop for hands free cookie making. My new ice cream scoop is exactly the same shape as my cookie dough scoop, only 4 times larger!
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"We've grown bigger, we need bigger cookies!"
(subtle hidden message behind gift)
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Happy Mothers Day, Mom!

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Right back at ya, kids!
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Sunday, 11 May 2008

52 Blessings: Working Together

Right now my office is over staffed. Most of the hygienists would like more hours (not me, I just want to keep the hours I have: 8 hours/week), but those women who want more hours want very specific hours. A couple of months ago a request was made for the hygienists to pick up some extra hours at the end of the day, finishing work at 5:30 instead of 3:30. No one wanted to work a 10 hour day, and everyone had reasons they wanted to be done by 3:30. The sign up sheet to work the "after hours" dates remained empty when I came back to work the next week, and clearly the doctors were furious that those who have complained about not getting enough work days weren't willing to help out by making appointment times available to patients who want to come in later in the day.
I went home and talked to the kids about it. I explained that I would be helping my office out if I would work later on Wednesdays, and that it would only be temporary. I told the kids that if they would work together after the carpool dropped them off; do their chores, piano, and homework till I got home, I would put all the extra money I earned into a Wii fund.
The kids have been great about it, I've left them a to-do list and they have worked together and gotten along. Jaclyn has missed out on this project because of school play rehearsals, which has made it almost better because the other kids have moved up a notch in responsibility without Jaclyn home for this work exercise.
After the kids earned their first $300 I was lucky enough to find a store flyer advertising a new location that would have Wii gaming systems for their grand opening. I had to stand in line outside for 30 minutes in the cold (it had snowed the night before) and then an hour inside the store, but I was one of the happy customers who walked away with a Wii. While I was at it I bought more components and games for the kids to earn over the next few weeks as I finish up my 6 weeks of working late.
I can't say this has been a sacrifice for the kids, because they are being well rewarded, but I do appreciate the way they have treated each other well on those afternoons and done all that has been asked of them.
At work I'm a hero with the doctors. I haven't been asked to give up any early morning hours, nor have I had my total hours cut back as the other hygienists have over the last month. My job security is stronger than ever.

Friday, 9 May 2008

Chloe

Four things I like about this picture:
First of all, the flash cards - not my idea. She persuaded me to buy them, and when I did she was so excited she said, "It's like it's my birthday!"
Second, the tongue.
Third, the candy necklace on a girl who doesn't like sticky things (she didn't eat it while it was on her body).
Fourth, the Fresca can with the orange juice cap. She poured orange juice into the pop can, maybe to pretend she was drinking pop? It is kind of ick that she pulled that unwashed can out of the recycling, but she was so proud to be *reusing*.

Thursday, 8 May 2008

SPT{h}

How old is old?



Age can be a touchy subject, but I hope I'm safe to say that this chamber pipe organ circa 1785 is something old.





Today I went with Carmen on the best field trip to Cantos Music Foundation down town. I first heard of this museum last summer through Tourism Calgary, a site I use all the time to find out about special local events. I wasn't confident it would be fun for my kids, and I never got brave enough (or bored enough?) to give it a try, but it is well worth a family visit in the near future.


video

In one area there was a whole wall of various instruments, which I didn't initially realize were connected together and operated by the keyboard at the end. This multi-instrument instrument is a Theatre Organ and it was used back in the days of Silent Pictures to add live music to movies. This Theatre Organ is one of only ten existing in Canada.
(I learned this song on the piano as a child, but I dont' know what it is called. Anyone? Anyone?)

While I was there I learned that Cantos sometimes hosts a "Silent Movie Night" accompanied by their Theatre Organ, which is now at the top of my (newly created with only one item) list of unique dates I want to go on with Ken.



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Carmen's favorite instrument was the Theremin. It works kind of like two radio antennae which react to your hands moving closer and farther away - controlling pitch and volume. It can make ghost sound effects or motorcycle sound effects as well as recognizable tunes, depending on the skill of the operator.

We won't be trading in piano lessons for theremin lessons. Can you imagine living with that thing?

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

52 Blessings


Getting bumped up to business class: the leg room, the hot moist wash cloth, the food, the glass dishes! Friendly skies indeed!

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Blog Party 2008

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Before I left for Utah I mentioned to a few people that I was heading to Women's Conference. If Ken was with me when the subject came up he'd say, "Tell them where else you're going in Utah . . . " So I just stopped telling people I was going away at all. How do you explain about a blogging *reunion* with people you've never *met*?
Kelly and I had the bright idea of staying at the Hampton Inn where the blogging party was held, which turned out to be a good idea since we lingered at the party till 1am! (I was so glad just to be taking the elevator upstairs when we finally tore ourselves away)
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Kelly and I spent most of Saturday shopping. We thought we'd head to the hotel around 5pm to repack our new purchases into our suitcases and freshen up for the party. We didn't get to the hotel until 5:30 or so, only to be told by the person at the front desk that the blogging party room was booked for 5pm! We panicked at the idea of meeting up with any bloggers in our state of dishevelment, and we unloaded our bags and carried them up to our room as quickly and discreetly as possible (other than the spy moves and laughter we couldn't suppress). We were relieved to hear from Lisa who checked her evite and informed us that the party didn't start till 7pm. I don't know why I didn't print out my evite and bring it with me to refer to for details?
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When we went downstairs we were immediately greeted with hugs and welcomes from Jill, Michelle, and Kristi. No detail was neglected for the party with cute blogging centerpieces on the tables and more food than we could consume! I brought 2 flavors of my hand dipped chocolates served in my signature pizza box. My kids could not believe their luck when I dipped chocolates 2 weeks ago and saved some for them. Christmas chocolates in April? Well, the weather was cooperating with my Christmas spirit that week.
We had time to visit, as well as door prizes for everyone (with the obligation of an acceptance speech/introduction - which I really appreciated because I knew so few of the bloggers there)!


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I realized right before we headed down to the blogging party that I had left the memory card for my camera at home inside the laptop computer, and the port on my camera is corrupted, so all photos that I took at women's conference are trapped on the hard drive of my Nikon. I'm sad about that, but it was very nice just to enjoy the party without trying to document it. Thanks to better photographers than I, there are plenty of blog party photos on Jill's smugmug gallery for me to save and store myself. Thanks for sharing your camera talents, ladies!

I am only slightly surprised that the bloggers are in real life all they seem to be on their blogs (except Annalisa who talks with her hands which SPT has failed to reveal). I enjoyed the personal connection with previous blogging friends at the party - so nice to put my arms around you - and I feel like I've made more blogging friends as well. I even learned a thing or two about blogging from the Q&A period, and I am considering some format changes based on what I learned.

Thanks for the hospitality and only making fun of my Canadian accent once, eh!

Monday, 5 May 2008

BYU Women's Conference



Sister Beck welcomed us to Women's Conference on Thursday morning with words of wisdom. She told us to, "listen to what the spirit teaches you" and she pointed out that the spirit might teach something than words spoken in the various sessions. She encouraged to jot down our own thoughts that come to us during the classes, and to hearken - meaning to both listen and obey.


Sister Dew was the opening speaker. Her talk was encouraging and reminded me of one of Ken's favorite quotes:


Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men's blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work, remembering that a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after we are gone will be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing insistency. Remember that our sons and grandsons are going to do things that would stagger us. Let your watchword be order and your beacon beauty. Think big.
Daniel Burnham, Chicago architect. (1864-1912)


The most powerful message that Sister Dew shared was in the way she expressed her love for the sisters in the room, and sisters in the gospel in general. One of my YW's counsellors has told me that when I teach combined YW's lessons it is my telling the young women how I love them that is the best part of the lesson, and now I see that is so true.


April, Tiffany, Kelly, and I spent the rest of Thursday rushing from class to class, crossing the entire campus several times, not stopping to eat, trying to get the most out of our experience that day. Though I continued to take notes, and the classes we attended were of value, the frenzy and low blood sugar took a toll, diminishing my learning.

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Jot notes from Thursday:

  • Think of your life as a ministry.
  • Coming unto Christ means walking away from the world.
  • "contend no more against the Holy Ghost, but that ye receive it" (words of Amulek in Alma 34:38). Why would we/do we fight the spirit?
  • We can tune in to the Holy Ghost much the same way that we learn as young mothers to tune in to our babies cries. We can be that familiar with the still small voice.
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I took more copious notes in Sister Matsumori's session I'll Know the Scriptures Are True:


Just as we need to change the sizes and styles of clothing we provide for our children as they grow, keeping our children spiritually clothed with family scripture study requires changes in sizes (time) and styles of approach to this important habit. We don't necessarily need to read together for 15 minutes at 6am every day of our children's lives. In fact it may be more helpful to be sensitive to the changes in the children and the family and make continuous adjustments.

What 'fits' once won't necessarily always fit, but like we wouldn't give up buying clothes for children as they grow, we shouldn't give up on spiritually clothing our children either.



Some variety of styles for family scripture study:
  • Everyone submit a few of their favorite scriptures on a slip of paper, placing all the scriptures together in a jar. Draw out one scripture to read together a day.
  • Make a scripture mural.
  • Use scripture readers.
  • Make sure everyone has a pencil to mark their scriptures as you read together.
  • Give a candy to the first child who can say the next word as you leave off reading to encourage silently following along. (this one might just cause contention)
  • Study from start to finish of a book.
  • Study topically, teach how to use the topical guide. (Sister Matsumori has a combined Bible and Book of Mormon index/topical guide that is bound in a book looking like the same covers as the scriptures available throughout the church. I looked online and phoned Distribution Services this morning, and they've never heard of it. It may be something available in foreign countries outside the U.S. and Canada. If anyone tracks this down let met know.)
  • Read the Bible Dictionary.
  • Have the same scripture verse/verses for a whole week.
  • Text the weekly scripture to your teen.
  • As a quiet activity in sacrament meeting give your own scriptures and a notebook to your child and have them copy out verses you have marked - one per page. As they get older they can fill in the rest of the page with their own understanding or feelings about that specific scripture reference. (I guess this was just a scripture study idea, not necessarily for family scripture time, but I think Chloe will love doing this.


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I made notes on some thoughts that April shared with me as we were talking (uh-oh not listening during a session). April commented that we are here to develop our spirits, and how we sometimes get so distracted with the idea of being here to develop our bodies. April's ward had a speaker come in to talk to the YW about body image. She talked about watching a dog walker walking 3 dogs at once. She told the girls that she didn't think that the Chihuahua was wishing it had the greyhound's legs and that the greyhound wasn't wishing it had the thick long hair of the St. Bernard, and that the St. Bernard didn't wish it was little like the Chihuahua! They are just happy that their bodies are working for them and getting them to where they are going!

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Thursday evening the four of us went to Cafe Rio for dinner and then headed back to campus for the service opportunities. Taking the time for dinner was essential, but we did miss most of the service activities. There are online resources for the Thursday evening sharing stations and service projects that would be a great resource for enrichment leaders.

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On Friday Tiffany left us for a family funeral that day, and a family wedding the next day. It was fun to get to know you Tiffany! April, Kelly, and I took a very different approach to the conference sessions the second day. We were tired from Thursday and we wanted to have good seats for the closing session with President Monson, so we stayed in the Marriott Center the whole day. (Something Tiffany had mentioned as a strategy on Thursday???) By eliminating the frenzy of rushing across campus to get to another session we had a calmer spirit (and time to eat). I felt spiritually renewed and fortified by the end of Friday in a way that I didn't feel the first day.

Sister Beck was the opening speaker Friday morning. When Sister Beck was a child her father was called to serve as Mission President for Brazil. Her mother became the first Relief Society President in that country, and Sister Beck shared her mother's story of the first Relief Society meeting in Brazil. From that story Sister Beck taught that there is still so much work to be done, and it's "not fancy". We can't decorate it or center it around holidays, we just have to do it. I appreciated Sister Beck's comments on her own choices to serve. She said that since she became General Relief Society President her mother in law has said to her, "Don't they know you need some time to yourself?" and so forth. Finally Sister Beck told her mother in law, "I am they!" She told a story about her own pioneer ancestor's sacrifices and said, "Our pioneer ancestors did not make sacrifices so that I can be comfortable. Have a nice pedicure. Have a nicer shopping mall." Sister Beck is a shining example of the work we have before us as LDS women and the influence we can make in our families, our church and the world.

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MTC As A Review

Going on a mission is not a rite of passage into adulthood. It is a privilege.
Before your mission learn to do hard things and handle uncomfortable situations.
Before your mission foster personal spiritual experience.
Faith is the heart of missionary work.
Obedience is the foundation of missionary work.
Before your mission gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith.
Learn the value of work.
Learn to get along with all kinds of people (even little sisters who burst into song) as preparation for good relationships with your missionary companions.
Have family gospel discussions and get comfortable talking about the gospel. Learn what your parents' feelings are about the gospel.
Learn a foreign language.
Practise optimism.


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My Body is a Temple

The key to modesty is understanding the gospel and combining that understanding with our agency. Modesty is about moderation, identity, and confidence. It is about the gospel principle of purity, an important quality when preparing to enter the temple.

"Our roles change, but our identity does not!"

"Not everyone is wearing it if you are not. And you are the most important one."

What really stood out to me in this class is that the topic was directed at primary leaders and parents of primary age children. I thought it was going to be a youth topic! (It is a youth topic, but not only a youth topic.) There was a great emphasis on parents as examples of modesty.


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President Monson was the concluding speaker of the conference. It was moving to hear him speak and to share a room with him. He told stories of the influence of specific women in his life and said, "Thank you for the selfless service you give so willingly. Such service provides the golden threads which run through the tapestry of your lives." He asked us to "find joy in the journey now," and to, "Pause occasionally and reflect on all that you do and have done."


President Monson paused to wave to each seating section before he left the building. Love can be expressed in the smallest of acts.