Thursday, April 18, 2013

Boxes and Boxes and Boxes everywhere

 The amount of pictures I have on iPhoto is a lot. But the amount of pictures of houses-inside and out-is more than I would like.

In the process of getting ready to move we've seen at least 15 houses and driven by at least 30 more.

We aren't picky people, and we enjoy simplicity and modest space. 

I loved seeing the different layouts of the houses and wondered what my furniture would look like if we moved in.

Some houses had great curb appeal and others were more of an eye sore. Some houses we looked at for 40 minutes, others, well, we walked in and right back out the front door.   

The amount of time we spent looking is exhausting to think about.

Some layouts were really weird and not very appealing to a family with young children.

We created nicknames for a lot of the houses. One was the Pepto House. It was a pukey pink color. 

The houses we thought would be home, clearly ended up not being right. So we pressed on. We kept looking and looking and feeling discouraged.

Encouragement was everywhere around us, though. Friends and family kept telling us that we would find something soon and it would be just right for our family.

We kept thinking about all the possibilities while we began preparing for a move, even though we had no idea what our new address would be.

Like manna from heaven, the right place came along and was there when we most needed it. I was so exhausted, mentally and physically that once we found it and knew it was right I was able to let my guard down. I even got sick afterwards. You know how that is, right? 

Our apartment is full of boxes. It smells like cardboard in here. Blech. But it won't be long until we're tossing those boxes out. 

Our apartment is a mess. I'm putting off cleaning a lot of spaces because I'm going to be starting on some major deep cleaning really soon. There's too much to do and not enough time, therefore, I'm letting things go so I don't end up doing double the work.

We are so excited for these changes. 

When I see the sun shine through the windows of our new home I'll think of the many blessings and miracles that Heavenly Father pours out upon us when we most need him.  This experience reminds me that He doesn't abandon us. He stretches us and molds us into better people. He listens to our prayers and answers us the way we need to be answered. Sometimes, even if we don't have all the faith that we should. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

In the meantime...

This weekend was fantastic! We had some friends over to watch General Conference with us, and we even had birthday cake. I had great laughs, great uplifting and great food! I always enjoy a break from the regular weekend. It was nice to sleep in on Sunday and stay in comfy clothes all day.

The weekend went by way too fast, though. It seems like yesterday was Friday. But today marks the beginning of a new work week. Today is Monday. Monday is laundry day. Hooray! Not really.

I've been stressed out lately about some upcoming changes. We're in a time crunch, but we don't have all the answers we need yet. I've really been trying to have trust and faith that things are going to work out exactly as they should. This weekend helped me to have sweet insights about the decisions we're making right now and the answers that we're waiting for.

Miracles happen, right? 

On the upside, the sun is shining bright and warm air is here. The school day has already begun and chores are underway. Lunch is ready to be warmed up and ingredients for dinner are stacked up. 

Things may not be exactly as I want them to be at this very moment, but we're rolling and moving steadily towards our destination. And with these faces, who could be anything but optimistic? These monkeys are proof that miracles happen. 
Happy Monday!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Southern Living

I never thought I would live in the South.

Those palm trees still look surreal to me. Am I on vacation? I ask myself that question often.

 We see wildlife all the time. Even when I take my trash out, I'll see ducks and other birds waddling in front of the path, or even an eagle soaring over my head.

I love how close to the water we are and the beautiful scenery we can enjoy on a regular basis.

We try to go on hikes as often as we can.

And we can get pretty close to the animals we find.

Sometimes those animals are too close for comfort, like this little guy hanging out on our front door. This is not an isolated occasion.

 I love the trees we have down here, with the hanging moss.


This however, is something I never, ever thought I would see in all my days. 
This, I don't love. 
It did make us laugh pretty hard, though. in the South...

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

I did not fall off the face of the earth...

Periodically, throughout the last year I've thought about my sad little blog. And then I'd think of something else and move on.

Today I thought I'd come on by, see the debris of my abandoned blog and try to clean up this place. Hopefully it is more inviting (to me and my typing fingers).

One whole year has gone by since I last posted. More than a year. Where did time go?!

Time to move forward now.
Time to document more.
I've emerged back to my blogging days.
I hope.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Delve Right In

I have been on a Scripture Marking Spree!

I found some amazing scripture marking ideas from The Red Headed Hostess. AMAZING! And I love personalizing my scriptures. They are full of personal notes and comments about things in my personal life. I hardly ever let anyone use my scriptures, because they have so many personal insights in them.

When I first got my Quad (a set of Scriptures with all 4 Books of Scripture in one book: The Bible, The Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants, and The Pearl of Great Price) I decided that I would mark every reference from every hymn in the Hymnal in my scriptures. It was very enlightening to see how these scriptures could cross-reference with hymns. Hymns are a wonderful way to accompany your scripture study.

So now I found these "Page Titles" to add to the Book of Mormon. Basically, every page has a title that you write in to your scriptures. This way, you always know what's happening on a particular page and it can help you find scriptures quickly and read in context if you are just randomly selecting a page to read. I thought it was a great idea. I have been staying up late every night this week working on this project.

My workspace

It has really strengthened my testimony of the Power of the Book of Mormon. It's truths are so apparent, even if you are just summarizing events (or pages, in this case). You can feel the Spirit as you read, and write these notes. It has been particularly uplifting to go through the whole story of the Book of Mormon all at once. I was able to make connections and insights that weren't so obvious to me before.

I encourage you to make your scriptures your own, and make notes in the margins that will help you remember the inspirations you receive as you read. This way we will truly "liken all scriptures unto us, that it might be for our profit and learning." 1 Nephi 19:23

*Drop me a line if you'd like me to send you a free, non-committal copy of the Book of Mormon.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Reading Every day

When I was expecting our first child, I was going through all of the "New Mommy" stages, where you begin to evaluate every single aspect of your life to make sure that you will be the best mother possible. I looked at the ordinary: child safety, proper bedding and vehicle restraints, etc. Then I began looking into the more personal and spiritual. How will I teach this child everything he needs to know so he can live a happy and good life?! So, I evaluated the basics.

We were good people, from good families that went to church and lived good lives. We magnified our church assignments and always tried to take the high road. But we weren't perfect. There were things that needed improving and one of those things was reading the scriptures every day. This needed to change.

So the hubs and I started reading at least one chapter of the Book of Mormon every day. We would read, and discuss what we learned. Every night I would have something new to ponder about and every night I felt strengthened by the Spirit that comes into your life when you read the scriptures. The Book of Mormon teaches you how to be a better parent. All throughout the book you read about how someone is teaching their child how to be better; how to follow the Savior; how to be closer to God. The Book of Mormon teaches what Christ taught here on earth. It expands on what we learn from His teachings in the Bible.

Reading this book intensely changed our lives. We were happier, we were more sensitive to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, we were closer to one another and we felt it's power. We went through the book almost twice before our little one arrived. We felt so strengthened, and I'm so grateful we began this endeavor to read every day.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

This is me.

I have not been very open to my specific beliefs on my blog before, for fear of ridicule or judgement. But this is who I am. My religion is not just my church, it's not just something I believe or follow; but rather it is who I am. Everything in my life is based on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I don't intend to make this a religious blog, or anything like that; but I do feel that I need to devote some time to sharing what I believe. This month I am participating in a month long forum about the Book of Mormon. This book is another testament of Jesus Christ. It backs up the Bible and teaches about Christ coming to the Americas. I will be posting about this book all month long. I've given it a lot of thought, and I know I need to do this. If you don't care to know about what I think on this subject, then you don't have to read.

If you'd like to know about what other people think of this sacred book, then you can visit my friend Jocelyn's blog where she is spear-heading this forum. If you would like a copy of this book, let me know and I will mail you one, no charge, no obligation. I just ask that you read it. The Book of Mormon contains beautiful truths and teachings of Christ, and I don't know where my life would be without it.