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Showing posts from November, 2010

The Family: A Proclamation (and a fun gift for grandparents!)

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Fifteen years ago, the leaders of my Church, who we sustain as modern prophets, gave a powerful statement of our beliefs about families. Elegant and profound, I love the words of "The Family: A Proclamation to the World." If you've ever wondered why Mormons feel so strongly about families, all you need to do is read this proclamation.


Last summer, I downloaded a wonderful digital booklet someone had made with the complete text of the document, with space to add my own photos. So for Christmas, I created the following book using the Proclamation and my own family photos. I'm giving a copy to each set of Grandparents and keeping two for our family.

The following is our book (with my commentary in parentheses)


We, The First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal …

Favorite Christmas Book & Movie, Plus a Free Christmas Download (Favorites Friday)

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If you've never read The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, then this is the year to buy the book and share it with your family. It's a hilarious and touching look at what the story of Christmas can do for a rag-tag group of hooligans. We read it as a family every year and it never gets old. I always get a bit teary at the end.

There's also a delightful movie that is just as wonderful.

And speaking of traditions, a few weeks ago I created a book of 25 true Christmas stories. Many of them are from LDS Church magazines, so there is a fair bit of LDS culture in them -- we call each other "brother and sister so-and-so," and there is one story about tithing and a few others about missionaries, for instance. The last two days include the story of Christmas from the Book of Mormon (what was happening on the American continent at the time of Christ's birth) and the Bible.

You can download a Word document with the stories to create your own 25 Days of Christmas book by …

Glorious Fall (Wordless Wednesday)

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Fall is so wonderful! One minute you'll be looking at a lovely scene like this . . .


. . . and the next, the sun pokes its head up and you'll get this kind of brilliance


And it makes a lovely background for portraits.




The only thing I don't like about fall is that it means winter is coming. Don't remind me.

Teaching Children Responsibility ~ Notes from Mother's Guild Meeting

We had the privilege of having a wonderful empty-nester lead the discussion for our mother's group this week. Mary Hall brought two of her daughters along and we got to hear from all three of them about their ideas about teaching children responsibility.

When I asked Mary to lead, I had in mind the "teaching work" part of responsibility and expected to hear lots of ideas about chore charts, chores, and the like. I was pleased to hear instead many ideas I'd never considered that were an important part of teaching children responsibility.

Here are a few of the points that stood out to me:

* Mary opened with this quote from President James E. Faust: "In my opinion, the teaching, rearing, and training of children requires more intelligence, intuitive understanding, humility, strength, wisdom, spirituality, perseverance, and hard work than any other challenge we might have in life."

* Teaching children responsibility ideally requires both a father and a mother wo…

Are you a reader? (Favorites Friday)`

Have you discovered Goodreads yet?

I've been using it to keep track of the books I read for several years now. It's a wonderful way for me to remember that book I read, the one about the boy, oh what was it's name again? My reviews aren't masterpiece reading, as they're meant more to trigger my own memory in later years. Often I'll include some of my favorite quotes so that I can quickly find them again when necessary. You can sort the books you've read by date you've read them, by how you rate them, and in other ways and you can add books to various lists if you want, such as "books that would be good for teenagers" or "favorite parenting books." I have a list of my top favorite children's books, for instance. There's also a "books I'm currently reading" page, but I use that mostly for books I've checked out of the library and have had to return before finishing so I'll remember to pick them up aga…

One of my favorite rooms (Nearly Wordless Wednesday)

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I designed our house five years ago to be a great place to raise a large and growing family. One of my favorite rooms is the nursery. It's connected to the master bedroom with two sliding doors. I love that we're close to our kids. Eventually, when we no longer have babies in that room, we can open up the doors and use it as a library or a sitting room.
Last summer, I put up these pictures on one wall and filled the first seven with one of my favorites of each child as a baby. It's so fun to be nursing a baby and looking up and remembering how one of her siblings looked at that age (and yes, we DO need to add one of Katie to the wall).
Here's what the room looks from the master bedroom doorway -- each of my children's blessing outfits adorn the wall above the cribs.
Harmony sleeps in the brown crib, Katie in the white one. Once Harmony starts climbing out of her crib (hopefully not TOO soon), we'll move her to a toddler bed in the room Eliza and the twins sh…

Funny Video (Favorites Friday)

Six Months

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Six months ago, we were blessed with a special child.

She's intense and focused.
She never stops moving.
She brings joy to the world with her smiles.

She's a little goofy.

Everyone loves her.
She's a special gift to us from a loving Heavenly Father.
We're grateful she's an important part of our family.

Happy Half-Birthday, Katherine!

Halloween! (Wordless Wednesday)

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All eight in costume!