Friday, April 29, 2011

It Really Didn't Hurt

Yesterday I ran 10 miles for the first time ever. One of the problems--my leg and foot are still not where they need to be and I think I pushed myself a little too hard. I had a PT appointment in the afternoon and when my therapist was working on my leg, she asked if I had ever considered acupuncture. I thought--HECK WHY NOT.

As crazy as it seems, it didn't hurt. Now, there was one needle that was a little painful, but I think it was in a spot that was pretty inflamed. I sure feel a lot better today. It's a good thing because I have LOTS TO DO.

Sidenote: Doing a fitness challenge that involves eating more healthy when you are making death by chocolate, tres leches cake, and banana split cake is NOT very smart.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


The training is going well--we are now 45 days away from the race. Can I just say I'M STARTING TO REALLY GET NERVOUS.

There is a lot going on to keep me busy, but I have managed to get my scheduled runs in. I've decided that I will just forge ahead and see what happens. I have to admit when I have to do the long runs I'm pretty sore. So I've decided to run my 10 miles tomorrow because I am doing a lot of prep work for a dinner I am making for 11 on Saturday and on Sunday. I have to add that I'm lovin my Garmin. Allan gave it to me for Christmas and I have really struggled with figuring it out. Now that I know how to use it IT IS SO MUCH FUN. I love that it will show me exactly where I ran on google map. (The little controlling me wonders if a parent could put it on a child you were a little worried about and know exactly where they had been ; )

Running the hills continues to be tough--I managed to get in 6 hills yesterday. The goal is to try to run each one pretty close to the same speed and most of mine were the same--I think one was about 20 seconds slower (and the funny thing was, it wasn't the last one ; )

I went today and finally got fitted for my orthotics. Sure hope they help with the foot and knee pain--otherwise that was a big expense down the drain.

Sidenote: We have Stake Conference this weekend, and the funny thing is the GA we are having is the same one that Elder Rob is having at his Stake Conference in a couple of weeks ; )

Saturday, April 23, 2011

So Much Better Than Legos

Every Easter I am reminded of something Brent said many Easters ago. Each of my children always got a little gift inside their Easter Basket--something besides candy, sometimes it was a movie or a book, etc. One year Brent got a box of Legos. (I think he was about 10) He said, "Legos are great, but the Atonement is such a better gift." (Coming from a child who we were told would never understand religion, that was a pretty incredible comment) (By the way, the pic is not Brent but our little Elder)

The Atonement truly is a better gift. As I have been preparing my lesson for Sunday, I have been reflecting a great deal on the power of the Atonement. I don't know how it works, but I know it does. I was recently in a Women's Conference and was reminded about the resurrected Savior's visit to the Nephites when he appeared to them and said, "Arise and come forth unto me, that ye may thrust your hands into my side, and also that ye may feel the prints of the nails in my hands and in my feet, that ye may know that I am the God of Israel, and the God of the whole earth, and have been slain for the sins of the world." (3 Nephi 11:14)

The speaker commented on how He had them come forth one by one and touch His wounds so they would each understand that He was wounded for us. The lesson for each of us is we are all wounded, and He, and only He, has the power to heal us. There was something so powerful in that thought. Something I have known, but it was made so much clearer to me. He didn't have them come forth to feel His biceps and feel how powerful He was, but rather feel His wounds.

The speaker also reminded us of the woman with the issue of blood (one of Elder Rob's "favorite" story when he was a youth--NOT). She had such great faith and knew that "If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole." (Mark 5:28) And how can we not be touched as we read "she was healed immediately". He reminded us how we can each symbolically touch His garment as we partake of the Sacrament.

I'm so incredibly grateful for His power to heal us--heal us from whatever. What an incredible blessing we can have if we will just "come unto Him". It truly is an amazing gift.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Race Day Music

I feel like Race Day is fast approaching. My training is going pretty well. The foot/knee is getting better. I will be getting orthotics next week and hopefully that will help me get to 100%. The longer runs are getting longer and frankly I'm so incredibly surprised I can run 7.2 miles--and a little proud of myself ; )

My iPod is an important part of my running. I have been working on a playlist and decided that if I had a little bit of music from everyone in the family that might help to keep me going.

I have just about everyone's, but there are a couple of members of the family that I can't come up with music for--not sure what will help me to think of them.

But here's what I have so far:
  • Allan--YMCA: This will definitely make me smile during the race. I will remember he and Heidi doing their dance at her wedding reception.
  • Elder Rob--Viva La Vida: This always reminds me of my little Elder.
  • Heidi--Everybody Dance Now: I don’t know ANYONE who loves to dance as much as my little Heidi.
  • Stephen--Let's Get It Started Again: I know Stephen loves the Black Eyed Peas, and this is one of the songs of theirs that I really love.
  • Daphne--Cotton Eye Joe: Oh my, I will never forget Daph at 9+ months pregnant doing Just Dance on the Wii ; )
  • Georgia--Georgia On My Mind: Yeah, it might have me going a little slow, but at least I will be smiling thinking of my little Georgia ; )
  • Drew--Eye of the Tiger: He was so intense as he did this on the Wii.
  • Hannah--Hey Mickey: That song always reminds me of cheerleading and Hannah is a little cheerleader.
  • Brandon--We Are The Champions: When B was a little boy he would do the “loser” sign on his forehead whenever they would play this song at a game.
  • Kiah--Brown-Eyed Girl: When I did her CD for her Grad this was one of the songs on it and she is the brown eyed girl ; )
  • Jason--I Just Can't Wait to be King: Lion King came out on J’s 6th birthday and he was so excited to go see it—wow, that was years ago.
  • Wendy--Thriller: When we went to see 13 going on 30, Wendy laughed so hard during the scene where they do the Thriller dance.
  • Nancy--1999 (We’re Gonna Party Like it’s 1999): She loved the artist formerly known as Prince.
  • Neal--Beautiful Day: I think he is U2’s biggest fan
  • G-Man--We're All In This Together: When I was visiting this little guy in Texas, he was SHOCKED to learn I hadn’t seen High School Musical. In fact, he was ready to give me his DVD because he just knew I needed to see it ; )
I really don't need music for Brent and Macy--they will both be running the race with me. Wait a minute, that isn't right--they will be running the same race I'm running, but there is no way we are running together--I'm sure they will be running well ahead of me.

So now I just need to come up with music for: Daniel, Darren, Amanda, Christopher, Heather, Tony, Josh, Xander, Evan, Scarlett, and Lauren. I seriously thought of something from Mary Poppins for Christopher--that would really make me smile; for Amanda something I thought of Kung Fun Fighting because for some reason it reminds me of Kung Fu Panda-which makes me think of her; for Lauren maybe "Isn't She Lovely"--she is a real cutie; but I'll have to give it all a little more thought.

Sidenote: Poor Brent called last night from the Medical Center--he hit his head and ended up having to get staples in his head. He's okay and I'm so glad.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Happy Birthday, Elder

Here he is with his proud daddy.

The day he was born--he was my biggest child at 9 pounds 3 ounces. He was born around 2 a.m. on Saturday morning and blessed at Church the next day. Yes, I was crazy--but, seriously, Allan's dad was going to Church with us and there was no way I was not going to take my baby to have him blessed with Grandpa there ; ) It has always meant a great deal to Elder Rob to know he was there. Actually, this was taken the next day--I guess I didn't quite have it together that day ; )

He was still at BYU for his 19th, but his sister, Heidi, took care of him: I know he will have a great 20th birthday in the mission field.

I want to share a few of my favorite memories.

He was such a cute little baby.

With his Grandpa.

For a young man who is so picky about his hair, this just makes me smile.

When he was a little guy, he took Minnie with him EVERYWHERE.

And Minnie again

The day he was baptized--look at that smile. In his little suit, I could just see him as a missionary at 19 ; )

And another one with the smile that I love

With his "Tank" ; )

He REALLY was a good boy ; )

I love the smile on his face in this picture--such a FABULOUS trip.

This will always be one of my favorite pictures of Heidi, Brent, and my little boy.

But then a few years later, Macy took this one:

Many years ago we visited the Provo temple

And in the blink of an eye he was here while at the MTC

And this was such a special day

He is so excited because he has a temple about a block from where he is living right now.

I just have to share a little of what Elder Rob said in his e-mail about our temple being announced here in Winnipeg, "then I heard Winnipeg, MB. Before President Monson announced them, I crossed my fingers, and just got a feeling that maybe one could be announced this time for Winnipeg. But when he said that, I didn't make any noise, but kind of threw my arms in the air and silently did little rooting signals and was just extremely stoked."

I am so excited because in a little less than a month it will be MOTHER'S DAY and that means A PHONE CALL FROM OUR ELDER ROB.


Sidenote: Last night our two Elders left our home--Elder H is headed to the MTC this morning. I'm so happy for him. Elder W. will be going back to Wales in a few weeks. He has been a great missionary. It has been such a delight to have them in our home. Missionaries are amazing young men and women.

It was sweet because last night they left this on our kitchen table--they were so sweet. I guess after spending a few weeks they realize what's important at our house--pictures and CANDY ; )

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What Could Have Been A VERY UGLY Lesson

The Lesson: Always ask--What is the cost for having this done?

Allan and I took the recipe book in to be printed. Decided to have each page laminated and spiral bound. We also decided to make a few extra copies to give to those who participated. We needed to have Elder Rob's done by Monday so I could mail it once I got his address.

On Sunday afternoon the place where it was being printed called to give me the total price.

ARE YOU SITTING DOWN? I'm sure glad I was...The little clerk said, "the total is $650.00."

I GASPED and said, "Pardon me?"

Again she said, "$650.00"

I said, "I'm sorry--there is no way I'm paying $650."

She asked, "Didn't anyone tell you what this was going to cost?" I'm thinking, do you think I'm crazy. There is no way I'm going to do something like this for that much money.

She told me she would have the manager call me back. A few minutes later he did. He explained the costs and I said, "I'm sorry. I'm not paying that--I would NEVER have done it if anyone told me it was that much." He told me they had only printed the one for Elder Rob, and he thought they better call to check to make sure I knew the cost involved. He cut the price for the one book which they had already printed and we decided not to laminate the others. Thank goodness the cost was cut significantly.

I picked the books up and put Elder Rob's in the mail yesterday--hopefully he will get it by his birthday tomorrow.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Great Collaboration

Elder Rob has been transferred and I cannot mail his recipe book until I get his new address. I am so pleased with how it's turned out. I had to share with you, this page which includes the recipe from my adorable little soon to be 6 year old grandson, D. I chuckled when I read his cute little "recipe" ; )

It has been so fun to have all the recipes. I have loved looking for all the pictures--I found some really cute ones:

This one from our Thanksgiving in California--Elder Rob is a real "drumstick" person and I think it was almost too much for him to see B enjoying the drumstick as much as he would ; ) I think that explains the look on his face.

He will be a little jealous when he realizes Brent enjoyed one of those drumsticks at Christmas

I loved this one of J and K many, many years ago--

And in 1994 these kids enjoying a meal together.

And I love this one of my beautiful daughter, Heidi, and beautiful granddaughter, Amanda.

This one made me smile--as Stephen is teaching is little D how to eat those little "Fun Dips"--I think years ago they were called Lick It Sticks ; )

But the one that really touched my heart has to be THIS one taken in 1996. It was the celebration of several birthdays--we were celebrating Grandma and Grandpa's birthdays as well as Uncle Homer's and Daphne and Jason.

I know he will enjoy having the recipes, and will absolutely love all the pictures.

Sidenote #1: I decided to make these little temple candies to share with my Class on Sunday, and for Allan to take when he goes to visit an outlying Branch, and, of course, for the Primary children. We are all so very excited.

Sidenote #2: One of the things I heard over and over again during Conference was the word "patterns"--I've decided to spend more time as I study the scriptures looking for the patterns. It has made my scripture reading even better.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Special Day

April 6th has great significance in Church History, but it also has great significance in my history, as well. Back in 1974--in between the afternoon session of Conference and Priesthood, I was baptized. (I'd love to tell you all I was 8, but that's NOT TRUE ; )

The past 37 years have been pretty incredible. Last weekend, as I sat in General Conference and heard the wonderful talks, I was taken back to those early years when I would go to our building and LISTEN to General Conference--no WATCHING in those days. I didn't always understand everything I heard, but I certainly understood everything I FELT. That is why I'm still here today--I KNEW IT WAS TRUE THEN, AND I KNOW IT IS STILL TRUE. I'm so grateful for those who have helped me along the way--who have been there to encourage and gently teach. I'm also grateful for those who, as Elder Christofferson stated in his Conference address, were willing to correct me when I needed it. I will always appreciate a Bishop who when I said, "I have a testimony of tithing, I just can't pay it", ever so gently but forceful enough for me to know I needed to listen, said, "Then, Sister J, you DON'T HAVE A TESTIMONY OF TITHING." As well, the Lord has seen fit to chasten me, and again, as Elder Christofferson said, I needed it. I appreciate so very much all those friends who knew that it wasn't easy being a single mom, and, therefore, took Stephen and I under their wing and adopted us as part of their families. I will forever be grateful for each and every one of them that included us in so many family activities. I must also give a great thank you to my son, Stephen. There were times when just knowing the responsibility I had as his mom kept me doing whatever I needed to do--I never wanted to let him down.

I'm especially grateful for a husband who is on this journey with me--we truly are very blessed. Obviously, I love and appreciate each member of my family. Not all of them have embraced everything we believe, and that is their choice, but that hasn't changed the way we feel about them. They are wonderful people and I love them all so very much.

I am incredibly grateful to have this truth in my life. I feel so blessed to have raised my children with this knowledge and to watch it bless their lives. Also, to have Elder Rob out sharing this message with the people of Pocatello, Idaho, is so wonderful. (It is still so hard for me to believe he has been out for 10 1/2 months already) BTW, I got a phone call from one of his buddies the other day--the guys are going to come over in a few weeks, and I'm going to make them Death by Chocolate to celebrate his one year anniversary. It was so cute because G said they were talking about Death by Chocolate the other day because one of them tried to make it and it didn't turn out right ; )

Now, I must say, when I first joined the Church I was a FABULOUS missionary--I told everyone about the Gospel. What has happened to me--why am I so scared. I have been giving a lot of thought to what President Uchtdorf said. To paraphrase--would I really rather pull my handcart across the prairies than open my mouth and share with my friends (or even strangers) something about what I believe. What if my friends, Janice and Daryl had been afraid to tell me? Where would Stephen and I be today??? And believe me I lived a lifestyle TOTALLY OPPOSITE to what I believe today so I'm pretty sure they weren't sure what my reaction would be, but they knew I NEEDED IT IN MY LIFE so they opened their mouths. And believe me, If I saw me on the street then I would have thought--there is no way in the world SHE will EVER listen or accept.

So for me this is a day where I am filled with so much gratitude.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Monumental Day

Back in August 1998 President Hinckley made a trip across Canada. When he stopped in Regina, Saskatchewan, he announced a temple. When we here in Winnipeg heard a temple had been announced in Regina we were pretty sure it meant he would not be announcing a temple in Winnipeg.

When he came to Winnipeg a couple of days later it was so wonderful--a day I don't think I'll ever forget. Heidi and Brent were part of the Youth Choir which was wonderful. (One day I may have to blog about the opportunity Heidi had to shake hands with President and Sister Hinckley) Although a temple was not announced for Winnipeg, he promised us that one day we would have a temple. Each Conference I have been waiting and well...

I wish you all could have heard the excitement in our Stake Center when President Monson announced there would be a temple in Winnipeg. It is going to be wonderful.

My heart was taken to: Idaho where I knew my little Elder was sitting with missionaries and I just know how thrilled he would be--can't wait to read his e-mail on Monday; Utah where Heidi, Daniel and Brent were sitting with Allan's sisters (oh that must have been such a scene of joy and tears); to Texas where Neal and Macy would be so excited for us; and to Auburn where Stephen and Daphne would be cheering knowing what a blessing it will be for us to have a temple right here. I think of the countless missionaries who have served here who will be so thrilled for the Saints here in this area--in fact, I know Stephen and Daphne's Bishop served here years and years ago and talked about coming to Winnipeg next year to visit. Maybe he and his family will wait until the temple is built ; ) Lots of text messages during this session of Conference. Allan said he felt like he was getting a massage from his blackberry because there were so many messages coming through.

The temple in Regina has been a great blessing to us. When we first came here in 1996, Temple trips were 14 hours to Cardston, Alberta. Heidi and Brent made those trips with the youth. I remember November 1999 when the 5 of us were in Regina when the temple was dedicated by Elder Packer--President Hinckley was in Halifax dedicating that temple (the only time two temples were dedicated on the same day. It was a wonderful day and knowing how much easier it is to go 6 hours, made us so very grateful. Yes, at times the roads were a little treacherous, but when I think of people who have to travel 2 or 3 days (or more) by bus, I know I really can't complain.

And to think, soon we will have a temple right here in Winnipeg. WHAT AN AMAZING DAY this has been.

I will have to post later about all the wonderful talks, but I'm just so excited with this news.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Some Thoughts

I have had a few "senior moments" more frequently lately, and can I just say they are starting to scare me a bit. I had a serious memory lapse the other day. I have always had a pretty good memory and to think it may be going really bothers me. The other morning I was in the kitchen talking to myself (nothing abnormal about that, eh ; ) about how the toaster needed a good cleaning, but instead of referring to it as the toaster, I called it the iron.

I suppose these things bother me more because I really don't know if there is a family history of dementia. I guess only time will tell.

I am just so grateful for prayer and being able to communicate with my Heavenly Father. I hate being a way from family--I want to be closer to help when I can. As I watch one of my children deal with some pretty nagging medical issues, I'm so grateful for prayer. There is not much else I can do but pray. I suppose if I was closer, I couldn't do anything anyway, but it would just be easier. I just hope the doctors are able to find out what's wrong so things can be taken care of for them. As well, another child is facing some pretty substantial economic challenges. Not much else I could do there, but I guess I would just feel better if I was there to give them a hug. I was thinking about a line from the final episode of Lost when Jack's dad tells him, "None of us does it alone". We all know we're not alone, Heavenly Father is always there, and it's also so nice to know family is there, too.

I know that growth is part of the Plan. I have always loved this quote from C.S. Lewis:

"Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of - throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace."

I know that there is a purpose for struggles. If we turn to the Lord, He will help us deal with them.

And now to lighten things up again, some WHO KNEW facts:

People with allergies can lower allergy reactions by laughing.

20252 is Smokey the Bear's own zip code.

An Octopus will eat its own arms if it gets really hungry.

Some male spiders pluck their cobwebs like a guitar to attract female spiders.