Thursday, June 20, 2024

Scattered January

1. I Call it my Beach Calling

Sometimes the Lord calls you to a position where you need to stretch and grow, and other times he gives you a calling where you can kick up your feet, relax, and have fun. 

Primary chorister is the latter for me.

I have a burning passion inside for Jesus, and that passion extends to teaching others. Give me a room full of kids and I will do everything in my power to ignite a love for Jesus in their little hearts. I also have a burning passion inside for music, so give me room to do both? It's a dream.

January marked the end of studying the New Testament, so before we jumped into the Book of Mormon, we sang each song one more time, and each time we learned a truth about Jesus from the lyrics we sang, I had a child write it on the board. Phrase after phrase was written or drawn in chalk, and by the end of the hour, we had filled the entire board with truths about Jesus in children's handwriting. It was so beautiful I couldn't sing by the end because the lump in my throat was so big. Here's a small portion: 

So grateful Jesus healed the 'lepord.' #leopard #leper 
Music is so powerful.

2. Thinking Ahead is not Generally my Thing.

But since I have a missionary in Chile, I felt I need to change my thing. Her birthday is in February and, wouldn't you know, I buckled down and got a package out to her in early January so it would reach her in time! Go me.

3. One Day

My parents had a rough entry into 2024. A months-long leg infection, layers of viral infections, and a fall on the ice while shoveling snow that blew out a knee.

They were a sorry couple. 

My dad is serving in the Stake Presidency of a student ward, which is a great calling for him, but it does distance him from the watchful care of a home ward, so knowing that my parents would likely die before becoming squeaky wheels, I found his home bishop's email address and sent him a message to alert him to the situation. The bishop replied almost immediately, and within the day (either because of the email or because someone else had noticed) the ward had rallied and gave them the love and support only a ward family can provide. Love was expressed, the driveway was shoveled, meals were given... it's the gospel of Jesus Christ in action.

And then, looking at our calendar Brian and I noticed that we miraculously had an entire Saturday blank on our calendar! So we got the crazy idea to drive up unannounced for the day to deep clean their house. The kids were happy and eager to help with the surprise by grabbing construction paper, scissors, and markers to write get well messages on as many hearts as we could cut out, and by holding down the homestead while we were gone. 

I made several freezer meals to leave with them, and then we hopped in the car after the kids' basketball games late Friday night with the meals, cleaning supplies, smiles, a care package, and construction paper hearts. We stopped in Cedar City to sleep, and were up early Saturday morning to finish the drive. We decided not to say anything to them until we were 20 minutes from their doorstep so they wouldn't be able to turn us away, and then spent the entire day working like a reverse hurricane- tidying and scrubbing and dusting and vacuuming and tucking fresh sheets around mattress corners...

They are both people who are used to serving others, so it made them nervous to sit while we buzzed around them. I knew it would, but I hoped that a clean house at the end of the day would be worth a few hours of nervousness. We ordered them to sit and relax more times than I could count, and they tried! but my dad mostly followed us around, holding conversation and hobbling like an old man with his blown-out knee and a cane, and my mom tried to follow where the conversation went, but was honestly too sick to do much other than go from bed to couch to chair.

At the end of the day, we had finished cleaning, and as a final touch, left the meals in the freezer and the hearts taped to their bedroom door. Then we drove back to Cedar City that night and were home before church on Sunday.

We went up there to help them, but as we left, our hearts were full. King Benjamin encourages his people to "consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God." And since the first two commandments are to love god and love your neighbor, I guess we did a pretty good job in that moment. And we certainly felt blessed and happy. I love believing in a God who blesses his children for loving.

4. When Life Hands you Cacao Nibs, Make Hot Chocolate

Isn't that the saying? Timothy had a dream of running a hot chocolate stand, and he executed it perfectly. He drew up plans, budgeted his money, made the food, and sat out in the perfect weather to sell. Friends from all over the neighborhoods came to support him, and he came away with a little extra cash in his pockets.

Bless all the good people.

Eliza was a good little helper, too.

5. Sugar Fast

We all decided to do a sugar fast for the month of January. With one treat a week. 

I'll tell you, brownies and ice cream never taste so good as when you haven't had sugar for seven days preceding it! 

Unless you're Timothy and happen to have a stomach bug on Treat Day. There were a few tears shed over it, but we promised him that the ice cream and brownies would be ready for him as soon as his stomach was feeling better.

6. The Cutest Dates

I love these kids.

7. S.P.O.R.T.S.

With all the kids' sports, we always have something entertaining to go to in the evenings.

8. Along With Sports, We Also Like to Relax. 

I hope the kids always remember this. Curling up around the couch doing nothing but being together.

9. Cheer Camp

The high school cheerleaders ran a little cheer camp for any elementary students who wanted to join. Eliza was all in! Until she realized that cheer leading happens in the gym... during a basketball game... with the buzzer. 

Eliza hates the buzzer.

It hurts her ears, and ever since she was tiny, she has classified 'headphones' under the 'very important needs' in her life. 

But here for the first time, I sensed a little conflict for her as she scanned the other little cheerleaders in the group and noticed that no one else had headphones. Still, she kept them on while she sat in the bleachers with her team (can you find here in the group up there?!), but I did notice she put them around her neck when she went out onto the court during halftime to do her little cheer dance. 

The instant the dance was finished she put them back on and came to find us, happy and smiling. And I didn't even mention it. I figure she'll release them on her own terms, and in the meantime I'll make sure to treat her the same either way to help her see that she is lovable and amazing when she wears them, and when she doesn't.

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad you are writing more regularly again! I enjoy reading you! (Nancy's mom)