During the past week I was host to a perfume party. While there are many of you who are probably going, Huh? It is pretty fun. I never thought about making my own perfume before, and it's fun to smell all the different scents.
As were were smelling and chatting, it occurred to me that it would make a great blog. Unfortunately, it was just my daughters, me and the rep -- Sandra. No one else showed up. Have you had that happen to you? Well...it happens to me a lot. I'm just not a party magnet, and people are always too busy to come to my house. Sigh.
But I figured it was okay, I still get to chat with Sandra, who is a military mom, like me, and see what's new in her life. I talk with her online sometimes, but it's better in person. I also got to spend a little time with my daughters, doing the feminine thing -- perfume. -- Read More
Arts & Entertainment/Movies: "Camp Rock" by Linda Scanlan a.k.a. L.S. Keilbart
Camp Rock was released in stores last week. I picked it up today and the kids eagerly grabbed it from my hands and immediately inserted the disc into the player. They sat riveted to their seats during the 98 minute showing.
I had never really listened to the Jonas Brothers before today. I think their tone and music are definitely catchy for this generation. My ear however likens them unto the many Disney artists that are being cranked out yearly like the Cheetah Girls, Hannah Montana and others. Joe Jonas, the lead singer, has a squeezing, pushing quality about his singing. It's almost as if he doesn't have natural volume and has to make up for it in a forced attempt. The group sound is good and I am sure that the pre-teen and early teen females don't know the difference. When googling the Jonas Brothers I found page upon page of links for them, so their music works...just not with me. -- Read More
Books: "Out of Jerusalem Series by H.B. Moore" by Alison Palmer
What are the things that help you understand the Book of Mormon best? Of course, the best way is to immerse yourself in the words of the scriptures, then spend time in prayer, letting the words and the feelings flow over you until they become a part of your very being. Gradually, the language and messages become clearer, more personal, closer to hearing your Heavenly Father’s voice as if He were talking just to you. The wonderful part comes from knowing this is true.
There are other ways, as well. I think it is a huge blessing to realize how intimately Heavenly Father understands each of His children. He realizes that the methods that are easy for one are not necessarily the talents of others. He provides for every condition, talent and temperament of those who are truly trying to seek Him. Think for a moment about all the different experiences He provides, opening the door for the Spirit to touch our hearts in the most appropriate ways. -- Read More
This week I’m going camping with my daughter’s fifth grade class. It’s a district tradition that all the fifth graders take an overnight fieldtrip to a school owned camping area and participate in two days worth of super fun activities—like tie-dying T-shirts and night games. I’m sure there will be hiking, and roasting marshmallows, as well as other educational things to pass the time.
She is not my first child to go on this trip, but for one reason or another, I wasn’t able to go with my older two. Luckily, the girls and boys go separately, so only about half of the fifth grade in the school is there at once, which makes it easier for the chaperones—including me.
I’ve found her excitement nearly tangible as she has spent the last week going over her packing list—the one in her head—each day after school. It’s funny, school only started last Monday, and already we’re going on this trip. What timing! The kids haven’t even had time to figure out their routine. -- Read More
Health & Food: "Hair, Skin & Nails, Part 4" by Candace E. Salima
From last week's post on Health, we left off with:
Diet and exercise work in concert to keep our bodies healthy at every level, including the hair, skin and nails we are discussing in this booklet. If you eat a healthy diet but don’t exercise at all – you’re losing out on the maximum benefits of both. I’m afraid we were not meant to sit in office chairs and then come home and crash on the couch for the evening. So, it’s time to get busy and find a way of eating that will work for you and a method of exercise you enjoy.
Supplementation, in and of itself, has been medically proven and approved by the American Medical Association (AMA) to improve the health of the average human being. There are a myriad of vitamin supplements on the market, the trick to finding the best one to use is to ask a few questions. -- Read More
Health & Food/Dutch Oven: "Anybody Know Any Campfire Songs?" by Keith Fisher
Dinner was delicious, the dishes are done, and the Dutch ovens are put away. The sun has set and twilight is coming on. The kids settle down to sit in front of . . . what? Burning charcoal briquettes on a raised metal table is one thing, but you can’t light a fire here, in the middle of this parking lot.
A few years ago, when I began to see ads for portable fireplaces, I laughed. I couldn’t imagine anyone finding a campsite in the wilderness, pitching a tent, and lighting a fire in a fold out fireplace. It reminded me of something I’d seen Goofy do in an old Disney cartoon.
I forgot about the idea until about seven years ago when I parked my camp trailer in the parking lot at the Davis County Fairgrounds. We’d come for the Dutch Oven Convention. The potluck dinner had just ended. We gathered in our lawn chairs to swap stories and enjoy the company. My friend pulled out his homemade portable fire pit. -- Read More
Home & Family: "Of Flat Tires and Super Young People" by Muriel Sluyter
I'd like to take you back to a moment in time where character defined itself rather clearly in my life:
The character that takes command in moments of crucial choices has already been determined by a thousand other choices made earlier in seemingly unimportant moments ... by all those times when the voice of conscience was at war with the voice of temptation ... the decisions that, piece by piece, bit by bit, developed habits of discipline or of laziness; habits of self-sacrifice or self-indulgence; habits of duty and honor and integrity — or dishonor and shame." (Ronald Reagan)
A couple weeks ago, I was on my way to an appointment and to take perishables from our place to a friend, when a huge nail flattened my rear tire. I stopped; a young man, Walt, stopped behind me and asked if he could help, confessing that he had never changed a tire. My husband had changed the only flat we had experienced in my car, and I didn’t know how to get at the equipment. We looked at each other and grinned, knowing this was going to be a learning experience. -- Read More
Home & Family/Preparedness: "Frugal Feature, Dry Milk" by Barbara Salsbury
Most of you who have even a small amount of preparedness items in your pantry usually have at least one can or package of dry milk. Many times it is there because someone or some list has specified that you must have at least some dry milk on hand. But for some unknown reason we hesitate to use it on a consistent basis. It remains in our mind as a storage item. Then too for many years dry milk has had a bad rap regarding its taste. Some of you (or your family) would almost gag – or croak - rather than drink straight dry milk. (* See below for the usual reason.) The dry milk of today is definitely a much tastier product than that of years past.
Today let’s eliminate some of those negatives and focus on the positive points of dry milk.
First let’s do away with one of the rumors; neither regular non-fat nor instant dry milk is more nutritional than the other. Instant dry milk is made from regular non-fat milk. -- Read More
LDS Outlets/Gardening & Landscaping: "Planning the Spot for Your Pond" by Heather Justesen
Last week I talked about pond-less water features, one of the many options available out there. There are dozens of possible looks available, so if this option appeals to you, look around and find something that fits your needs.
If you prefer to have a pond and/or stream in your yard, there are a number of considerations. First is size—how big do you want the pond to be? Most experts agree that people generally wish they could have made their ponds slightly larger than they turned out, so consider making it a bit larger than you had originally planned. Are you planning on growing plants and fish, do you want to attract frogs? -- Read More
LDS Outlets/Humor: "A Twisted Fairy Tale" by C.L. Beck
Several months ago, I attended a science fiction symposium called “Life, the Universe, and Everything.” I can almost hear you asking yourself why a woman whose life already resembles a sci-fi movie would consider going to a symposium on the subject. I don’t know, maybe because it presented a learning opportunity. Writers need continual growth to improve their craft. Or maybe because big name authors, like Orson Scott Card (“Ender’s Game”) and Gail Carson Levine (“Ella Enchanted”), were teaching.
Naw. It’s because the symposium was free.
Let me state for the record, I am not a big sci-fi fan. Okay, wait. Under threat of being forced to watch re-runs of the “X-Files,” I’ll secretly admit that as a kid I had a crush on Captain James T. Kirk, of the starship, Enterprise. But, “Star Trek” doesn’t count as science fiction. Everyone knows it rates up there with the works of Hemingway. -- Read More
New Neighbors: "Mount Rushmore" by Cheri Crane
This week, as presidential campaigns rev up for the general election, I find myself thinking of a handful of past United States presidents. I'm sure we all have favorites---mine would include: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
I admire George Washington because of his integrity, courage, and leadership during the formation of our country. Abraham Lincoln has always been a favorite because of his wisdom, compassion, and courage during a time that tore our country apart at the seams. I've enjoyed reading the exploits of Teddy Roosevelt and I admire his spunk and his push (the Square Deal) to provide a fair shake for average citizens and businessmen alike. Franklin D. Roosevelt overcame great personal trials to lead our country through the challenging depression era. -- Read More
Religious: "Gifts from God" by Rebecca Talley
“We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healing, interpretation of tongues, and so forth.” (7th Article of Faith)
Those called to serve missions experience the gift of tongues as well as the interpretation of tongues. Missionaries spend only a few months in the MTC learning a foreign language before they are sent out to use their newly learned skills. Generally, language study takes years and yet, these missionaries learn languages in a relatively short time and are communicating in a foreign country. The Lord blesses those who seek to obtain the gift and interpretation of tongues and helps them to teach the gospel in an unfamiliar language.
Prophecy and revelation are closely connected. We believe that we have a living prophet who receives revelation and then prophesies to the world the will of the Lord. The Prophet, Thomas S. Monson, also serves as the President of The LDS Church and can receive revelation for the world. A Stake President is entitled to receive revelation and prophesy for those who live within the stake boundaries. A Bishop can receive revelation for those living in the ward boundaries. Husbands and fathers receive revelation for their families. We are all entitled to receive revelation for ourselves. -- Read More
Scrapbooking & Crafts: "Oodles of Artwork" by Kim Thompson
Now that school has started does the front of your refrigerator look like mine? I already have six or seven pieces of artwork my two younger children made during the first week of school. They rush home, excited to show it to me and then we give it a place of honor on the front of the refrigerator. Unfortunately, the pieces start to pile up and soon there isn't any room left and everytime my ten year old slams the refrigerator door, half of them go flying. I've been researching some solutions and I'd like to share some ideas with you.
TAKE PICTURES: One of my favorite ways to keep the memory of every piece of wonderful artwork is to use a camera. Take a picture of your child with his or her art whether it is a painting, a drawing, or a 3-D project. Now, not only do you have a great visual of the art, but you also have a great memory of what your child looked like when they made that special project. -- Read More
Services: "Baking in Bolivia" by Liz Adair
In my last posting I blogged about how flipping burgers is the major source of funding for SWAN's microcredit capital. Today's posting is about one lady who has received a loan through SWAN.
When Terry traveled to Bolivia in January to begin the first round of microcredit assistance, she and her Bolivian operative, Sonia, felt that the speediest way of finding an initial pool of elegible women would be to approach LDS bishops in the area and ask them to contact the most needy in their wards, tell them about the opportunity, and let them know about the informational meeting SWAN was holding to explain the microcredit program and requirements.
Elizabeth was one of the women who attended that first meeting. She and her seven children live in a one-room shack in a very poor area of town. (The picture is of Sonia in front of Elizabeth's house.) Elizabeth's husband abandoned her for another woman and offers no support to his children. -- Read More
Sports & Recreation: "Back to School, But Still Time for Fun" by Rachelle Christensen
Summer sports are coming to a rapid close as the beginning weeks of school rearrange our schedules. I love this time of year, especially in a few weeks when the weather gets considerably cooler and the leaves begin to change.
I also love this time of year because it’s easy to revel in the nostalgia of the season. I remember the excitement of getting ready for the first day of school—all the delicious new school supplies, new school clothes, maybe even a new backpack. Then school starts and after the first few days, you realize you’ve got about nine more months of homework to go. -- Read More
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