Saturday, April 27, 2013

What Is Your Nationality?

By Cindy R. Williams

I read about a fellow the other day that said his nationality or heritage was Caucajewmexdian.  I read it slowly then smiled. He must mean his ancestors hale from some European countries and that he is of Jewish decent along with Mexican and Canadian. I read more and found the "dian" was from India as in "Indian" rather than from Canada as in "Canadian."  Interesting.

I decided to write my nationality. This is what I came up with. I am a Caucabritscotwelshswedgerm. Sounds like I am some kind of strange germ right? Which is Caucasian, British, Scottish, Welsh, Swedish and German.

What is your nationality?

Friday, April 26, 2013

Tough Nuggies





By Beckie Carlson


Working at an elementary school is a lot like working at a circus. There is a lot of laughing, shouting, running around, and game playing. Once you get outside,it gets even more entertaining.
I love working here. The kids tell me regularly that I am their favorite aide. I wonder why that is? I make them follow the rules, I don't pick up their garbage, I let them beat me at tetherball, and I kick the ball far so they have to run to get it. Maybe it is the motherly aura that lingers from my own home. I've been a mom a long time. My kids would admit to it being as long as they can remember. I guess that is right, although I don't feel old enough to be a mother to some of them. 
I think learning should be fun. I try to make some fun in every lesson I teach, when I'm on the playground, in the lunchroom, and even at the gate when I work the 'bouncer' position. My son informed me last night that you can't learn when you are having fun because 'learning' takes 'effort' in the brain area and that is hard and not fun, and blah blah blah. I stopped listening because he wasn't making it funny. He is a smart guy though, so I did ponder it for a few moments before I found chocolate in my bag.  
Does learning have to take effort? I beg to differ with my brilliant son. I can remember many times when I thought I was playing a game, or having fun and later realized I learned something. Of course, I can't remember any of the specifics right NOW, but I promise it happened. 
The key to making learning fun is to not make kids cry during the game you are playing. Or is it? Maybe the little girl I made cry today will learn not to be such a bit drama queen and play nice next time. Or maybe, I'll learn that even when I call someone 'bratty' under my breath....they might hear it and cry. Maybe the real lesson here is that I need to eat a whole lot more chocolate on the first day of my cycle before stepping into a third grade class.....cause I said so. 

Photo credit: www.goodenoughmother.com

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Beware!

By Susan Knight

I missed my deadline because last night I was back and forth on the phone with my mother and siblings and talking to my children about a crisis that beset my mother.

She was scammed.

Someone called her pretending to be MY son, who is in college. This scammer soaked my mother for a few thousand dollars she did not have to lose, leaving her with only about one hundred dollars in her checking account.

As you can imagine, my emotions have been close to the surface all day today as eight siblings have been back and forth texting--while working--with what's happening and what's to be done.

This could happen to anybody who has compassion and loves her children and grandchildren. It could happen to me. It could happen to you and yours.

Please be vigilant. If anyone calls or emails you and asks you to wire money to a foreign country because they are in jail--hang up or delete.

I've received lots of those emails. I delete them.

My mother truly thought she was talking to my son. She wanted to help him. He told her he would pay her back as soon as he got out of jail. She believed him. My mother didn't want to betray his trust by telling me because he asked her not to.

I am sick about this, as you can imagine. She is embarrassed, humiliated, frustrated. She feels violated, as do I because it was about my son; my son, who was ensconced in finals at BYU this week, and not in jail because of a car accident in Mexico with lapsed insurance.

Like I said, this could happen to anyone. I have let her know that. We siblings have been consoling her all day.

Beware. Please.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Perspective

by Kami Cornwall

I have been ruminating recently on how people so easily lose their perspective in life. The morning news can do that to a person. I was watching a mother who supports her 5-year-old daughter in pageantry and admitted that her daughter's wardrobe was worth probably a million dollars. They showed the glitz and glam that this girl was surrounded with, and the young girl was saying she wanted to grow up to be a rock star and a nurse and....well the list went on. It was the STUFF that struck me...and the sense of entitlement that she seemed to have. 

As pink sequinned dresses and tiaras flashed before my eyes I thought of the image of some poor starving child and found myself saying, "That bedroom could feed a third world country." It kind of made me sick to think about. 

Maybe I'm just being moody.

I just hope we don't lose too much perspective as we go through life - as mothers, daughters, wives, aunts, and friends. I hope we appreciate what we have and are willing to share with others. Our family has adopted a "motto" this week: "Ubuntu - I am because we are." The idea is that not one of us can be happy when others are unhappy. Maybe that's where my perspective is coming from today.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Reviewing Books for Others



by Terri Wagner

When other authors ask you to review their book, what is the first thing that comes into your mind? Now, this is a book already more or less written. An ARC as they call it in the business. I am very comfortable doing ARC work because it was a big part of my trade publication work. Of course as I have blogged many times, nonfiction is ever so much more easier than fiction. Fiction is so terribly subjective.

That said though it is worth our effort to help out our fellow authors...we are after all all in this together. With the advent of the Internet and online publishing, wonderful stories that once would have been rejected have a chance to be read. I like that. Over the years, I have read many manuscripts that I thought why rejected? It is definitely as good as blah blah blah in that genre. Who knows?!

In the nonfiction world, we are more interested in the technical aspects of the article. Is it real? Is it possible? Does it follow the technical principles already in place? And yet fiction with its many genres has the same rules, now doesn't it? Is it believable? Does it follow the genre's rules? Is it intriguing or at least entertaining?

This past weekend, my niece and I went to see the same movie at different times with different friends. She did not like it. I did. I am always amazed how believable Tom Cruise is in his movies while remaining in the very least odd and eccentric in real life. (That is about as nice as I can really put it, LOL.) So why the difference? Did she expect more action? Was she looking for a space Fast and Furious story? Was I just in a reflective mood that day and liked the mind game approach of Oblivion? I have found over the years that the very best written scifi rarely transitions well into a movie. After all, Star Wars was a movie first!

So back to reviewing. Will my mood change my initial read through? Do you read it more than once? I do. I think you almost have too. Especially if it is a genre you are unfamiliar with. How else can you give it a proper review? When I am in unfamiliar territory, I google the genre and try to find the principles inherent in that genre so I can judge how well the author did.

Bottom line: Reviewing is serious business. It is the heart felt work of someone creative and probably a bit insecure (aren't all writers a bit insecure?). We owe it to them to review well. Give our honest opinion but also be honest with ourselves. Don't just say you liked it. That's telling me. As we always say in the writing world, don't tell me show me. Say what you liked. What made you cry, laugh, cringe. Sometimes the best I could offer up an aspiring tech writer was you seem to know your stuff. Sometimes that was all they needed to get better.

So go forth and offer to review. We are writers, let's support one another.

Monday, April 22, 2013

A Bit of Randomness and Excitement!

By Claire Enos

Well, I said I'd know my grades by the next time I posted, and here they are!




That's the highest GPA I've had in my college career! I'm so excited!

So, this past week I've been doing some re-writing of a story I had my ANWA sisters edit for me. I am currently only on page 5, but that's actually really good for me. I don't usually make it that far before I give up. I think I'm actually getting better at writing! I'm trying to get to 10k words by the end of the month. That's my goal this month. I have a week and a half to write 9k more words! Should be fun!

On to other subjects, such as a few random things I've seen on facebook recently:

  • Humor is associated with intelligence and honesty-- this is why women tend to be attracted to men with a sense of humor! (Explains so much!)
  • People who stay up late at night tend to be more intelligent than those that go to bed early (No wonder most of the writers I know stay up so late at night writing!)
  • The average worker is only productive for about 3.5 hours on Monday. (I guess I should make use of those 3.5 hours for my writing today!)
  • Dark chocolate contains a chemical that our bodies convert into phenylethylamine - the same chemical  secreted when we fall in love (hmmm)

Just a few facts I thought were interesting! Not sure if they are true, but it's interesting to think about, right?!

Happy Monday everybody! Have a great day!

<3Claire

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Little About History

by Marsha Ward

I put myself on a different schedule here a couple of month ago, and determined to be prompt and punctual in putting up my posts.

Here it is Saturday. Guess when my day was. Right. Yesterday!

However, I will do a little Blogger Magic, and you'll never know this isn't Friday, heh-heh.

I'm pretty sure I missed looking at my appointment calendar because I was riveted to the TV and news of the gruesome happenings in Boston and the surrounding area. At the time, it struck me that it was a perfect time to point out that on the night of April 18-19, other significant events occurred in the vicinity.

As Longfellow's much-maligned poem tells us:

Listen, my children, and you shall hear
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-five;
Hardly a man is now alive
Who remembers that famous day and year.


No, we're too busy texting, checking Facebook, surfing the Internet, or watching TV, to concern ourselves with anything so out-of-date as History!

Not so far removed from Cambridge and Watertown are the towns of Lexington and Concord, where April 19 means something quite different than the date of capture of an alleged terrorist bomber. (Okay, I went back and gave him the benefit of the doubt, as is legally responsible.)

History isn't a bad thing, my children. Learn of your roots. Learn how men and women in the past gave you this America we hold dear by their sweat, blood, and tears. Learn where the guts and gumption of the first responders of this bloody week got those attributes.

History! Dip into it once a day.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The Kimchi Principle

by Kari Diane Pike

Funny things -- absolutes.  As a child, I declared I would never eat brussel sprouts -- ever. I also insisted that I would never marry a politician and no way, no how would I get married before I completed a doctorate degree in animal science. And some forty years ago, a family friend told me to face up to the fact that my nonmember father would never join the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Guess what. I love brussel sprouts, I married a political junky before I completed my freshman year of college, and a little over twenty years ago, my dad accepted the gospel and joined the church.

I bring all this up because I heard a great talk by Elder Choi ( a General Authority for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) last week that has had me pondering the concepts of change and growth and challenges. I'll call it the "kimchi principle."

Kimchi and rice is to Koreans what bread and butter is to Americans. It accompanies pretty much every meal, every day. Kimchi is made with napa cabbage, peppers, salt, radish, onions, and lots and lots -- and lots of garlic. If you've never experienced kimchi, be prepared. It's spicy (translated: HOT!), and it has a most particular and pungent aroma. Most Americans find it offensive. I know I did. Now I have days when I crave this amazing food. Did I mention that kimchi is considered one of the top 10 most nutritious foods? I even talked a Korean friend into showing me how to make my own kimchi.

I've blogged a bit about kimchi in the past, but I loved Elder Choi's analogy so much I just have to share it with you. You see, living the gospel is a lot like kimchi. If you aren't used to living the commandments, you may feel uncomfortable or even dislike it completely. In Korea, if you don't develop a taste for kimchi, you probably won't survive because it is such a staple in their diet. Many people get offended by teachings in the gospel, but they soon discover that without it, they perish.

The process of making kimchi takes time and patience - just like learning the gospel comes line upon line, precept on precept. The whole process is easier if you have someone with you who has experience and knowledge. And many hands working together make the tasks much easier. There are foundational ingredients for kimchi: cabbage, onions, peppers, and garlic. There are as many variations upon that foundation as there are people who make kimchi. The gospel has crucial foundational principles that guide us along the path to eternal life -- and even though different people choose different cultures, that gospel foundation remains the same...namely a testimony of the divinity of Jesus Christ and His atoning sacrifice -- that He came to earth as a man and lived and died and lives again.

If you try a little kimchi every day, you learn to appreciate and even come to love it. The gospel is the same. Exercise faith and do your best to keep the commandments, and pretty soon you will crave the feeling the Spirit bring to you.

I have 15 minutes before my day to post this is over -- so I'll let you ponder on this more on your own. With time and experience...and through overcoming challenges, we grow and our perceptions of the world change. I, for one, am most grateful for the agency we have to change. I am grateful for the healing power of the Atonement and for the Savior's love and patience with me as I learn to love.

What things have you learned and/or come to appreciate in your life?

Hugs~

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Napotaged

by Jill Burgoyne

So: My baby boy came. He is 17 days old AND he makes me a Momma of three adorable, energetic, intelligent and strong-willed babies. And it is not as bad as I had feared. With all of the horror stories you hear when you are pregnant (there is something about a baby bump that must non-verbally express "please tell me how this pregnancy could go wrong and how this baby will further complicate my life beyond all reason,") I was ready for Armageddon.

I literally stuffed my freezer with frozen chicken nuggets, corn dogs, and pot pies. Ha ha. And they're coming in handy, I'm glad I did, but I was so ready for...my house to fall down or something, but that hasn't happened. I've had support. It's been great. And yesterday was my first all-day alone with three babies. I didn't even realize that, but it was exciting and almost exactly how I pictured it.

It's true, yesterday, I was napotaged. Despite the careful planning and scheduling of feedings, lunch, bedtimes and snacks, the 2 year old decided to try to drop her nap. She sang and cried and cooed for an hour and a half and just as she was getting quiet, the two week old decided to wake up. He kept his schedule though. They timed this all perfectly so that by the time I took care of all needs, it was too late for a nap for any of us and we had to brave our family night full of cranky mischief and screaming conversations...whew. 

And yet: we all lived to see another day.  Amazing how that works.


Saturday, April 13, 2013

My Computer Is in the Grave Yard

By Jennifer Debenham

This will be short and sweet because my computer died, so I am writing this with my phone. Haha! You can't keep a blogger down! Although I am tempted to use texting shorthand. (And maybe too many punctuation marks.)

Now I am fantasizing about my next computer and thought, who better to get computer advice from than writers? so what do you think, Mac or PC? I've never had a Mac.

Punography - Wordplay to make you smile


by Cindy R. Williams
-collection via emails and the internet-

When chemists die, they barium.
Jokes about German sausage are the wurst.
A soldier who survived mustard gas and pepper spray is now a seasoned veteran.
I know a guy who's addicted to brake fluid. He says he can stop any time .
How does Moses make his tea? Hebrews it.
I stayed up all night to see where the sun went. Then it dawned on me.
This girl said she recognized me from the vegetarian club, but I'd never met herbivore.
I'm reading a book about anti-gravity. I can't put it down.
I did a theatrical performance about puns. It was a play on words.
They told me I had type A blood, but it was a Type-O.
Why were the Indians here first? They had reservations.
Energizer bunny arrested. Charged with battery.
I didn't like my beard at first. Then it grew on me.
How do you make holy water? Boil the heck out of it!
Did you hear about the cross-eyed teacher who lost her job because she couldn't control her pupils?
When you get a bladder infection, urine trouble.
I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger. Then it hit me!
Broken pencils are pointless.
I tried to catch some fog. I mist.
What do you call a dinosaur with an extensive vocabulary? A thesaurus.
England has no kidney bank, but it does have a Liverpool .
I used to be a banker, but then I lost interest.
I dropped out of communism class because of lousy Marx.
All the toilets in New York's police stations have been stolen. Police have nothing to go on.
I got a job at a bakery because I kneaded dough.
Haunted French pancakes give me the crepes.
Velcro - what a rip off!
Cartoonist found dead in home. Details are sketchy.
Venison for dinner? Oh deer!
Earthquake in Washington IS obviously government's fault.
I used to think I was indecisive, but now I'm not so sure.
Be kind to your dentist. He has fillings, too.





Thursday, April 11, 2013

Writing Nostalgia


By Susan Knight

 

I don’t consider myself a good enough writer to give tidbits about writing here on this blog. I mean, I used to be a journalist, but even that was “used to be.”

Looking back, I know I have lived a very good and fulfilled life. I confess I’m a “has been” in many areas, but, in writing, I’m also a “wanna’ be.” Striving to write and finish my first book is a challenge. I’m tired when I come home from work and writing takes more brain power than I possess, most nights. But I press on.

I recently waxed nostalgic and read over the article I wrote which won me the Keystone award for feature story writing in 2005. Meh. I didn’t think it was my best writing, but perhaps the article content did the trick and touched the judges.

It was about a Christian family in my home town. My home town area is very religious, being filled with Mennonites and Calvary Baptists. This one family I covered was very large. The wife was expecting her 10th child. She found out she was pregnant in January, and found out in February she had inoperable cancer.

She was a nurse and the hospital where she worked took up a collection to send her—and her very large family—to DisneyWorld in March. It’s a 24-hour drive by car and about two hours by air from Pennsylvania. The family flew.

What a fundraising feat that must have been, to be able to send a family of twelve to Florida. Astronomical. But the good nurses said she, this undaunted mother with cancer, was always the first to help people in any way needed. They did have help from the Make-a-Wish Foundation.

But, it didn’t stop there. While the family was in Orlando, the woman’s friends from the hospital and the couple’s friends from their Baptist church, gathered up their own friends and family to do a home makeover on the family’s rundown house. It’s a nice house, but needed some refurbishing.

These community members were called upon to paint walls, lay carpet, fix plumbing, and landscape the home. Even little things like repairing a toilet paper holder weren’t overlooked. The person who switched out the carpet didn’t even know the family, yet donated his time—and the carpeting. He said it was the easiest job he ever did because there were so many helping hands.

One artist, a friend of a friend, painted a cartoon mural in the small, closet bedroom of the family’s Down Syndrome, eight-year-old son. Those working in the home became fast friends, even though most of them had never met before.

While caught up in the interviewing process and photo snapping of the couple, after the fact, I remember thinking what great people they all were, especially the couple. I don’t mean just great. I mean great. Like saving the world great. Like going straight to heaven great. This couple never gave up hope and they had abundant faith that their lives were in the Lord’s hands. They said that phrase many times, like a mantra.

That wife and mother of ten died after delivering a very premature baby boy in July.

I was privileged to do a follow-up story in November, Thanksgiving, when they brought baby Andrew home. I waited, with my photographer, at the home and was entertained by the antics of the small children. Those in school took off and were also home, the oldest, a senior in high school.

After four, long months in a rehab home for babies, Andrew was carried over the threshold by his proud father and fawned over by nine, happy siblings. He was still on oxygen and needed a lot of care. The church stepped in for that, providing a nanny service of volunteer stay-at-home moms.

One woman, in particular, decided to devote herself to taking care of the baby, coming every day with her own young daughter. Others made meals or taxied children to music lessons and band practice.

There are good folks everywhere. It was a pleasure to be a small town reporter and to cover stories of ordinary, yet extraordinary, individuals —heroes who lived right near me.

I know there are more out there, too, in every small home town. Some other lucky reporter is getting to find that out. I hope they enjoy it as much as I did.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Sherman Alexie

by Kami Cornwall


Guess who came to my home town and gave a presentation? What gave it away? Oh yeah. I put it in the title already. Well for those of you who may not know him, Sherman Alexie grew up on the Coer D'Alene (pronounced CORE-duh-LANE) reservation just north of me here in Washington. He is a prolific writer and has published such books as, Smoke Signals (which got turned into a movie), The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, and Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven, just to name a few. Some of his books have been controversial but he always writes straight from the heart. He also graduated from WSU.

He talked about his life growing up, leaving the reservation, and throws in some tongue-in-cheek humor all along the way. I was honored to have had the opportunity to accompany a friend of mine who got an inside pass to meet him ahead of time. So we not only got to see the presentation, but we got to meet him and take a photo by his side beforehand. But wait...it gets better.

Shortly after his presentation he opened things up for a Q and A. One person asked him about what it was like to come to a school that was probably 97% white. To illustrate his point he said, "Let's see...who is the whitest person here?" He looked directly at me (I was sitting in the front row) and so I smiled and waved a little in response. "Yes," he continued as he motioned to me, "You. Come up here with me for a minute." I hopped on stage and bowed as giggles flitted throughout the coliseum.

As I approached I smiled and said, "Well, to be fair, I'm the whitest person I know." More giggles. Mr. Alexie gave me a sort of surprised look and then grinned a sly grin. He put his arm around me and said to the audience, "I have this scenario running in my head now. Something like...the Savage Native and the School Marm." Laughter erupted and I began to blush.

"What do you say? You wanna role play with me?" he teased. I shrugged a little maybe and as the audience ate it up I started to fan my face a little. More laughter. Then he said, "I'll wear the hoop skirt, but I'm not sure you can throw me over your shoulder and run off. What do you think?" Peals of laughter! I made like I was going to try but then laughed and said, "No, I don't think so."

He then illustrated his point clearly by saying, "Say I took this beautiful...white...girl, and I left her in Compton. How would she be treated? How would she feel?" Then he turned to me and asked, "How do you think you would feel?"

My answer? "Alone."

He thanked me for the perfect word for it and let me sit back down. That was last Thursday. At least four of my fellow students witnessed this and have brought it up each day this week in class, reliving and relishing the moment. "Sherman Alexie was totally macking on you! I was rolling...that was so funny! You're kind of a celebrity now!" and the list goes on. It was thrilling and embarrassing and completely fun as well as thought provoking. Thanks, Mr. Alexie! I'll never forget that night!


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

What to do?



by Terri Wagner

Having determined we are actually going to put pen to paper and write a "for real" novel, my coauthor and I have written precisely four opening scenes of which neither of us like. I did not realize writing with a partner could be so painful. The story is fairly simple, the plot typical for YA fantasy. It's the characters I hope are rich with great potential. The thing in fantasy is you have to love the characters. Frankly, the plots are all pretty much the same: hero/heroine who doesn't know their potential, wise mentor, quest established, creatures stopped, goal accomplished.

Now, there is a lot of wiggle room in that basic plot, but it is time honored. Think Joseph Campbell's The Power of the Myth. George Lucas used it and look where it got him.

So back to my story...how do you reconcile two different visions of the same book? We can agree on our characters; I think they will be loved. We can agree on the quest...that's not really hard, saving the fantasy world from a fate worse than death. We agree on the sweet romances that will eventually develop. We agree on what creatures will come into play...trolls, elves, dwarves, etc.

What we can't seem to agree on is the opening scene...well, I should say the second scene. The first one in any good fantasy is the nebulous beginning that always portends the quest. I say a rousing action scene with back story woven in. My partner favors a focus on one of the main if not the main character. She says Harry Potter, the Ranger series, Artmeis Fowl, they all started with the back story and led up to action.

So what say you? And while you are at it enjoy this version of Misty Mountain, the lost dwarven home of Middle Earth.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Of Writing, Finals, and Summer Goals

By Claire Enos

I almost thought I'd missed my posting day again! Then I realized it was still Monday and I still have time! I'm so glad!

This week is officially finals week, and I get to go home to Las Vegas on Saturday. My parents are so amazing and are driving up to pick me up from Rexburg! They're also picking up my best friend and roommate who is going home for Spring break and then driving back up with friends the next weekend.

We're both excited because we get to hit up the malls in Vegas before she leaves for another semester. I won't get to see her again until late July, which is sad, but we get to skype a lot, so that makes up for it!

I'm looking forward to finals being over (only one more final, due on Wednesday, then I'm done until September!) and being able to write. For one of my classes, we had to write up our goals for our life, so I decided to add a Summer 2013 list as well:

Summer 2013 List:
  • Sew a quilt
  • Volunteer at an Animal Shelter
  • Volunteer at the Library
  • Visit the Family History Center in Las Vegas
  • Visit family in Oregon and go to Westover Family Reunion
  • Work on Scrapbooking for family
  • Finish a novel
  • Make a new friend
  • Read a book a week (at least)
  • Keep up with a blog
  • Work on some family projects


I can't wait to get started on this list!

My next post, I will know what grades I got. I'm hoping for all A's and one B, so I'll be sure to let you all know how I did! If I did well I get to reward myself by buying myself an iPod! I hope I'm able to manage it! Only one class I'm worried about.

Have a good week, keep up with the writing!

<3Claire

PS: In other news, for those of you who know anything about Rexburg: It was nice enough the other day to study on my laptop outside! It started raining shortly after we went inside, but it was good enough to take this picture:





<----Me




And my roommate joined me!



That's the MC in the background, btw :)

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Best Weekend of April

by Marsha Ward

Twice a year, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) get the awesome opportunity to listen to/watch living prophets and enjoy their words of wisdom, inspiration, and revelation.

This is the best time of the Spring for me. It's a time of rejoicing, rejuvenation, re-assessment, and re-ordering my life. It lifts me spiritually and emotionally, and gives me calm in the face of adversity.

I invite you to listen to one or two of the four public sessions that will begin tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. MDT (that's 9 a.m. for Arizonans). The afternoon session begins at 2:00 p.m. MDT. The schedule repeats on Sunday.

Where? Click the image below to participate on Facebook, or go to http://www.lds.org/general-conference?lang=eng for other options. If you're fortunate enough to have access to the BYU TV channel, you can watch it there, as well.

Come listen to living prophets

Oh, and if you participate in Twitter, prepare youself for the twice-yearly onslaught of tweets from your LDS friends. Either tune them out, or give a care. You might be glad you did!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

What It's All About

Ammon and Cambrai - Timpanogas Temple
Let me introduce Mr. and Mrs. Ammon Johnson Pike.

Despite the inclement weather, the disabled vehicles (due to said weather), and a couple of nosebleeds (I'll forego posting those pictures) -- the wedding was beautiful. Of course, I've never witnessed a marriage ceremony in the House of the Lord that wasn't beautiful.

I really hated having to come home and jump back in to the reality of work, school, and well, life. I attended my first "real" business conference last week and let me tell you -- I have more gratitude than ever before for the efforts my eternal companion has made through the years to allow me to be a stay-at-home mom. Even though I had fun meeting new people and hanging out with my fellow copywriter Joeline (yes, we even made tshirts - a brilliant marketing plan if I do say so), I could not wait to get back home to my little "bubble".

Earlier in the month, Doug and I had been assigned to speak in church on Easter Sunday. I loved coming home, putting on my yoga pants and tshirt and opening my scriptures to study and ponder on the Atonement and leave that business world behind.

The night before Easter, I made comment to my daughter-in-law about how stressed I felt about speaking. She gave me an understanding look and said:
yep...we got stuck.

"Just talk about Jesus. It will be marvelous."

Wow. Talk about an "aha" moment!

Because that's what it's all about. The wedding was beautiful because it was centered on the making and keeping of sacred covenants with our Father in heaven. It wasn't about the weather or the flowers or the matching outfits.

 It is about love. It is about Christ. And it is about the blessings and opportunities afforded us through His Atonement.

So give yourself a hug -- and go out and share some of that love. You'll be glad  you did.
hugs~
The Copy Girls


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

April is National Poetry Month


By Leesa Ostrander


I am not a poet and dabble only in times where I need an outlet. I do however read poetry. Often.

I read poetry to my girls at night. We read Trixie Belden books and when one is finished we read a few nights of only poetry. I do have few favorites I read to them most nights of the week.

My favorite is Winken, Blinken and Nod. This poem is comforting to me and has a rhyme that the girls calm down to.

They also like when I read to them Nursery Rhymes. I like Ladybug, Ladybug. I like this one because it is the first one my oldest memorized from my mom teaching her. And my mom had it memorized from her mom, my Ga.

I think if I can help foster a love for words with my girls they will carry it on to their studies, families and help them remain creative.

Do you like poetry? What are your thoughts on the importance?