Wednesday, November 14, 2012


It's already the middle of November! Thanksgiving is NEXT week!! I love, love this time of year.

We have a "thankful tree". I try to remember to ask Seth & Scarlett something that "made them happy today" or what they are "grateful" for. We write them all on one paper in the shape of a leaf, and hopefully by next Thursday we'll have a tree full of cute leaves and list of blessings we have. I think it was November 4th... Scarlett said "Sugar bugs make me happy!" Uh. . . She really wants us to know how much she hates brushing her teeth.

I don't decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving, pretty much because it is socially unacceptable. I think focusing on what we're grateful as we celebrate Thanksgiving is a good way to celebrate the life of our Savior. It is because of him, through him, that we have all of the blessings I'm grateful for. So... I'm sorry to say, I'm so glad Thanksgiving seems to fall quite early this year. It means Christmas decorations can be up for a whole month and some!

I cannot wait to decorate for Christmas. We have two big bins full of decor. I'm sure Scarlett will be a great help this year, just like she was last year.

In other news... Seth and I spoke in church last Sunday. My topic was "gratitude", Seth spoke about "humility". I think we did well, Seth did great! He is a great speaker. He is also in practice, with School going on and he does a lot of training at work. Me... not so much. But it was great! I overall enjoy speaking in Church.

Lincoln turns 5 months tomorrow!! He is such a sweet, sweet boy. A happy boy! I'll have to post more about him after I take his 5 month photos tomorrow.

Seth got a promotion at work! It's exciting!! It is a new position, a "Product Evangelist". He will be more specialized in the products (webanalytics). There are 3 others with his job description, 2 that work with him, and 1 in Cali. Together they are to coordinate between departments. He's very excited about the opportunity, it will bring only bigger and better things down the road for him. I am so proud of him. I married such a bright and smart man. He provides for our family and we have the absolute CUTEST kids ever.

It is time for me to go to bed.

Just to follow up ...

From my last post. A friend posted this on Facebook. Yea, I was kind of bummed about the outcome of the presidential election. I believe President Barack Obama is a good man. I may not believe in his views as much as some other politicians. But that's cool... I do believe in Latter-day Prophets. I believe these words that a friend posted on Facebook. Thanks Karin!

So now is the time for us to remember the words of our church

leaders. True, we will see some difficult times. But we can take heart

from these words.


“It is our firm conviction as a people that the stars and stripes will be waving triumphantly in the breeze, as a symbol of the greatness and stability of the United States of America, when the Lord comes. This nation was established to be the Lord’s base of operations in this final gospel dispensation. From it the gospel is to go to every other nation and people. The greater its influence among the nations of the world, the more rapidly the gospel spreads. But the Lord has told us that all nations, the United States included, shall cease to be when he comes” (The Millennial Messiah, 491).


“We are fast approaching that moment prophesied by Joseph Smith when he said: ‘Even this nation will be on the very verge of crumbling to pieces and tumbling to the ground, and when the Constitution is upon the brink of ruin, this people will be the staff upon which the nation shall lean, and they shall bear the Constitution away from the very verge of destruction” (Church Historian’s Office, Salt Lake City, July 19, 1840) (The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, 623 - 624).

Words of James Burgess: “In the month of May 1843, several miles east of Nauvoo, the Nauvoo Legion was on parade and review, at the close of which Joseph Smith made some remarks upon our condition as a people and upon our future prospects, contrasting our present condition with our past trials and persecutions by the hands of our enemies; also upon the Constitution and government of the United States, stating that the time would come when the Constitution and government would hang by a brittle thread and would be ready to fall into other hands, but this people, the Latter-day Saints, will step forth and save it. . . .I, James Burgess, was present and testify to the above” (The Words of Joseph Smith, 279).

“The Lord told the Prophet Joseph Smith there would be an attempt to overthrow the country by destroying the Constitution. Joseph Smith predicted that the time would come when the Constitution would hang, as it were, by a thread, and at that time ‘this people will step forth and save it from the threatened destruction’ (Journal of Discourses, 7:15). It is my conviction that the elders of Israel, widely spread over the nation, will at that crucial time successfully rally the righteous of our country and provide the necessary balance of strength to save the institutions of constitutional government” (The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, 618 - 619).

On Thu, Mar 25, 2010 at 11:49 AM, Daniel Kelly Ogden wrote:

There are some extraordinary and very timely thoughts from President Harold B. Lee (speaking in October 1973) circulating on the Internet. I looked into the quotation carefully and have confirmed that the words below are accurate; at the end I list the sources. Latter-day Saints and all Americans need this right now. (Someone might even want to forward this to Glenn Beck; he needs to see it!)

President Lee:
Men may fail in this country, earthquakes may come, seas may heave beyond their bounds, there may be great drought, disaster, and hardship, but this nation, founded on principles laid down by men whom God raised up, will never fail.

This is the cradle of humanity, where life on this earth began in the Garden of Eden. This is the place of the New Jerusalem. . . . This is the place where the Savior will come to His temple.

We are living in a time of great crisis. The Country is torn with scandal and with criticism, with faultfinding and condemnation. There are those who have downgraded the image of this nation as probably never before in the history of the country.

I plead with you not to preach pessimism. Preach that this is the greatest country in all the world. . . . It is the nation that will stand despite whatever trials or crises it may yet have to pass through.

We must be on the optimistic side. This is a great nation; this is a great country; this is the most favored of all lands. While it is true that there are dangers and difficulties that lie ahead of us, we must not assume that we are going to stand by and watch the country go to ruin. We should not be heard to predict ills and calamities for the nation. On the contrary, we should be providing optimistic support for the nation.

You must remember . . . that this church is one of the most powerful agencies for the progress of the world, and we should . . . all sound with one voice. We must tell the world how we feel about this land and this nation and should bear our testimonies about the great mission and destiny that it has.

If we do this, we will help turn the tide of this great country and lessen the influence of the pessimists. We must be careful that we do not say or do anything that will further weaken the country. It is the negative, pessimistic comments about the nation that do as much harm as anything to the country today. We who carry these sacred responsibilities must preach the gospel of peace, and peace can only come by overcoming the things of the world. Now, we must be the dynamic force that will help turn the tide of fear and pessimism.

(Excerpts from a talk given at Ricks College Devotional Assembly, “Have Faith in America,” October 26, 1973, and printed in two sources: Ye Are the Light of the World: Selected Sermons and Writings of Harold B. Lee, 340, 350-351, and The Teachings of Harold B. Lee, edited by Clyde J. Williams, 365-366.)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Oh What A... next Tuesday will be!  Hahaha - I'm sorry, but I have to post at least once about this historic election year. It is such a close race! I follow political articles on CNN and see plenty of opinions on Facebook, and I watched the majority of the debates. I've researched the candidates just like I did in 2008. I am still registered as an independent voter and would like to consider myself an open minded person. Even though I live in a state that will most likely always vote Republican, I still go and vote for the candidate that will meet my needs the best at my current point in life.

 I'm sure there aren't really any "undecided voters" out there at this point, But I would just like to share the following. One of the gentleman that I met serving as a missionary in Japan posted this on Facebook tonight, it is direct words from his dad. I hope you take the time to read it.

"I am not the most avid FB user, and I know and respect the fact that our FB friends include people from all walks of life and a variety of political perspectives. So, other than sharing a link to Pam's speech in Tampa (and occasional responses to posts on other people's walls), I have generally avoided posting political opinions here.

Whatever our various personal political perspe
ctives might be, I hope that my FB friends know our family to be committed to trying our best to do the right things as we see them. We have been grateful for your kindness as we have both celebrated some joy and success in our lives, and as we have struggled with some very difficult things. None of us is perfect, we can only strive with sincerity to live up to our most noble beliefs and aspirations -- and when we fall short, pick ourselves up and try again harder. I appreciate your example, friendship and encouragement as we work through the challenges of life together.

Everyone has access to lots of information, and at this point most of us have pretty settled opinions about the presidential candidates. I respect that, and won't try to persuade anyone that they are on the wrong side or should change their political beliefs.

In this election, however, Pam and I are in the unusual position of having known one of the candidates for over 30 years. Mitt and Ann Romney were role models and friends to us when we were grad students in Boston so many years ago. This was a tender time in our lives when we were each raising young families -- they are 8-10 years older than we are, but our oldest (Peter) and their youngest (Craigy) were still in diapers at the time. We came to know the Romneys well. We spent hundreds of hours in their home, took care of each others children, shared with each other in private joys and sorrows, dreams and disappointments, hopes and aspirations. We saw Mitt devote literally dozens of hours each week, through his role as a lay leader in our church, to befriending and counseling and helping those who were lonely or in need -- in ways large and small. They taught and actively involved their boys in daily acts of service and kindness to others; that is simply who they are and the way they live.

Pam's speech at the RNC shared our personal story about how we experienced the Romney's tender kindness through the life of our daughter Kate -- from the initial struggles around her premature birth, to the sorrow of her passing 26 years later. (If you have not seen it yet, see a link in my post below.) There are hundreds if not thousands of other families who have experienced similar kindnesses in a myriad ways.

Regardless of political perspectives, I want each of our friends to know that these are among the finest, most hardworking, and most generously kind people we have known. While we understand that political campaigns are by nature contentious, it has been painful to us on occasion when commentary has become personal and suggested that Mitt does not care about those who are suffering, or seeks office to benefit himself and other "rich people," and that he must be "lying" if he says otherwise. We know these claims are completely false. This is a deeply good man, who has spent an extraordinary amount of his time and resources trying earnestly to help others. When a partisan commentator stated the other day that the Romney campaign was "pretending to care" when it dedicated what was originally going to be a campaign event instead to a relief effort assembling food packages to send to families that had been displaced by the storm, that was wrong. That was classic Mitt Romney -- see a need, and immediately roll up his sleeves to try to help both through his own personal effort, and by organizing and encouraging others. It is second nature to him -- that is how he was raised, and how he has raised his own family.

Personal character is of course just one factor in a decision whether to support a candidate. You may sincerely believe that the policies advocated by Pres. Obama are the best ones for the country -- that our government should become bigger, raise more taxes, spend them on expanding government programs, and adopt more regulations to make the government a bigger part of our lives and play a bigger role in subsidizing, guiding and controlling private business. If that is the case, then (while I disagree), I respect your right to vote according to your political beliefs and conscience.

However, it is my hope that NONE of my friends will give any weight to false caricatures of Mitt Romney as a bad man who does not wish to do anything to help those in need -- that all he cares about is rich people, and that his policies are in fact secretly intended to keep the poor in their place and make the rich richer. Any such suggestion is outrageously false. This is a deeply good man, who sincerely desires to re-invigorate the American economy, providing all Americans access to better jobs, more take-home pay, and a future bright with greater opportunities for themselves and their families -- while keeping faith with our seniors, veterans, and others who rely on Social Security, Medicare and help getting back on their feet after suffering dislocation. We can agree or disagree whether the Romney-Ryan policies are the best way to produce these results, but Mitt passionately believes they are. To vilify this good man as insincere or ill-intentioned is simply wrong.

The very best of luck to you. I trust you will join us in hoping for a smooth and fair election in which the voters make their decision clear, so that we can move forward to greater peace and opportunity for all."