Oct 26, 2017

New and Exciting Things - Life Happens

by Kari Diane Pike

In that space between sleep and wakefulness I watched the sun rise.The light chased away night's shadow and dressed the clouds in gowns of fuchsia, and gold, and copper. Color overflowed from the sky and a vibrant rainbow arched down to touch the valley below. The feelings of peace and gratitude  and joy that accompanied the scene added to the beauty.  The rainbow began to fade and I reached for my camera in order to capture the moment but I couldn't find it. The rainbow shimmered in a valiant effort to keep shining, then burst into glittery specks that fell to the earth. That's when I realized I had to be dreaming because (1) seeing a rainbow in front of the sun was scientifically impossible and (2) rainbows don't explode into glittery confetti.

The light faded behind a silvery mist and the echo of a train whistle outside stirred my consciousness. One more thought rode on the tail of my dream as it slipped away:
You couldn't take a picture of what you saw, but you can share its beauty by writing about it. The gift is yours as long as you use it for good.
 Today I met my new visiting teaching partner. As we chatted and got to know each other, she told me at least three times that I should write a book.

I haven't even been consistent lately about posting on this blog. What makes me think I can write a book? Sure, I talk about it. All.The.Time. But, you know. Life happens.

And then it hit me. Life happens! And it is magnificent. I love recognizing the Lord's tender mercies and watching the way He has prepared a way for everything to work out. Every day He sends angels to assist me on this incredible journey. And I want to share the beauty of witnessing how the Atonement of Jesus Christ blesses my life.

Two weeks ago, I learned I would be helping our oldest daughter drive her vehicle with five children, a dog, from Fairbanks, Alaska, to Phoenix, Arizona - oh, and towing a tent trailer the whole way. Sheer terror twisted my stomach in knots because, you know, two lane roads, ice, bar ditches, ice, never been there before, ice, camping along the way, ice... So I prayed. Our daughter prayed. My husband prayed. And several people came across our path. I learned from one friend that if we took the ferry to Seattle, we would save 1200 miles. That sounded like a perfect solution to avoiding the snow and ice that decided that week to cover the roads across Alaska and Canada.  Except we couldn't find a ferry schedule. And believe me, we searched.

A few days later, I met a man in a hospital waiting room who had lived in Alaska for twenty-five years. In less than thirty seconds, he pulled up a ferry schedule. Hoorah! Another step forward. But alas. The ferry wanted $4500.00 for the three day trip for our Clampett-like entourage. Nope. Not happening. More prayers were offered. More research took place. My husband determined that the best decision was to store the truck and the camper in Fairbanks and fly everyone to Arizona. Staying alive was much more important than the expense of flying. Our daughter searched some more and found plane tickets that would cost less than the amount needed for gas to drive for 60 hours or more. Win-Win!

That's how a Grandma, a Mom, five children, a dog and kennel, 13 checked bags and backpacks of various sizes, seven carry-on bags and seven personal items descended upon an Alaska Airline flight to Seattle and Phoenix. Compared to the idea of driving and camping in the snow for a couple of weeks, the ten hour layover was a piece of cake.

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin spoke about "Come What May and Love It". He taught about four things that help us get through life:

  • Learn to laugh - it will extend your life
  • Seek for the eternal
  • Understand the law of compensation - every tear today will be returned a hundredfold
  • Put your trust in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ
So during the past couple of days when my list of things to do threatened to topple over and bury me, I took a deep breath and watched the sunrise. I focused on the most important things, including a bike ride around the block with an active grandson and playing Mr. Potato Head with an imaginative granddaughter. I even found the time to post this blog, even if it had to wait until 10:35 p.m. 

In about eight hours the sun will rise again and new and exciting things are waiting to happen. I look forward to seeing what comes. I know it will be spectacular. 


Sunrise in Fairbanks. October 23, 2017


  1. Very beautiful writing, Kari. And a fun description of your decision process! Being the mother/grandmother to wonderful people is . . . well, wonderful. I love that life happens. It makes life worth living.

  2. Powerful stuff, valuable reminders,and yes, I do like your style!


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