Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Letter from a new convert {guest post}

Hello friends! Happy New Years Eve! I'm celebrating with a morning of yoga, breakfast, books, and blogs, and a super awesome guest post!

Today's post comes from Marie-Rose who is the author of one of my favorite blogs, Hope Always and Pray Constantly. Marie-Rose is a new convert who was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day saints in the middle of November. 

This is her letter to all members of the church titled "Letter From a New Convert" and it is addressed to all members of the Church. In return, you can find my letter to her called "Letter To a New Convert" over on her blog. My letter is addressed to all those who, in the words of Jeffery R. Holland, "[are young in the church...] young in years of age or young in years of membership or young in years of faith. One way or another, that should include just about all of us." So don't forget to click on over to her blog after you've spent some time here!

Hope Always and Pray Constantly


Letter from a new convert,

My baptism was last month and it was amazing. Do you remember yours? The Spirit was so strong :) the water was so warm and welcoming when I walked into the font. Everything melted away for a minute, other than the words spoken, and suddenly I was underwater. I had waited for this moment for so long. I'd already had one baptism date fall through, cuz my dad wasn't sure if he was okay with my choice. For two years I knew, deep in my heart, that Heavenly Father wanted me to get baptized. I just had to wait for the right time. 

I'm so excited that I've been able to go to church regularly since I've been at college. In 2013, I took the sacrament exactly once (in like July, I think). It was not a fun time, having to miss church. Sometimes, sitting in sacrament meeting, it feels like you've heard all these things a million times before. But it's so easy to forget them if you're not hearing them! And feeling the Spirit at church is my favorite part of the week. Being surrounded by other people who love you is amazing. I think they call that a ward family.

That's a thing about us new converts, we're still getting used to the lingo :)

Have you talked to your ward's missionaries recently? I bet they're pretty awesome. My sister missionaries are the best. We've been meeting weekly since I've been at college and I love them so much. I haven't figured out how to serve them dinner yet, cuz I'm in a dorm with no kitchen and live off of a meal plan, but you should see their faces when I bring snacks to lessons :)

Speaking of missionaries, you've probably heard that you should be a member missionary, right? Guess how I first heard about the church. My friends are pretty good member missionaries. They weren't afraid to mention church things in my presence, and they certainly weren't afraid to answer my questions, even if it meant hunting down an answer and getting back to me later. They invited me to activities and seminary and church and dances and girls camp and youth conference. They gave me a Book of Mormon. Most importantly, they let me go at my own pace. They never pushed me to investigate faster than I was comfortable with doing. So when you hear that you should be a member missionary, think of new converts like me. You wouldn't be reading this letter if it weren't for member missionaries.

I have a testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know that Heavenly Father loves us and is always there for us. I know that Jesus Christ is our savior. I know that prayer is powerful. I know there's a Plan, and eternity is bigger than whatever trial I might be going through at the moment. I know the Book of Mormon is true, and I can feel that when I read it. 

I am so happy to be a member of this wonderful church. 


Thank you for your missionary work, 

<3 Marie-Rose
hopealwaysandprayconstantly.blogspot.com



p.s. I'm searching for some awesome New Years Resolutions. What are some of yours?

Saturday, December 27, 2014

we believe in enjoying good food


Hiya friends!

The other day we were hanging out with some of our family friends and we were discussing how when people you really like get released from their callings in the church you feel like you want to do more than just raise your hand to thank them. One of the younger boys offered his opinion on the subject by saying; "ya I always want to clap or do jazz hands or something!"

Can you imagine the bishop saying "Sister Smith has been released from her calling as the primary president. All those who'd like to show their appreciation for her service make it manifest" and then the entire congregation breaks out in jazz hands?!

haha That would be priceless!

I am so ready for Sunday tomorrow. I've spent too many days without leaving my house. Although it's been a good break, I can't wait to be busy again.

I was reading in Jesus the Christ by James E. Talmage today and I came across an awesome quote that I wanted to share.

"We believe in enjoying good food... 
we believe in getting all the 
enjoyment out of eating that we can."


I think that I'm going to put that in vinyl on my wall in my kitchen when I'm old and married and have a house. Isn't it just the greatest?

But I really do love the context behind it. Many people wonder why Mormons don't drink alcohol, or Coffee, or do other things like drugs. The answer can be found in the 89th section of the Doctrine and Covenants and is known as the Word of Wisdom.

The Word of Wisdom was a revelation given from God regarding what was made for the human body and what was not. It outlines what should not be put in the human body, but what I love about it is it also outlines things that are good for the human body.

Mormon's may not drink alcohol, but we sure do enjoy some good food!

On an unrelated note, check out these fantastic covers done by Maddie Wilson. I first became obsessed with her music when one of her tracks was on the EFY soundtrack and I have been listening to her ever since. What I love about her music is she always chooses clean songs, or changes them to make them clean. And often times I like her covers better than the original. 

 





feel my sunlight


p.s. Check back soon for an AWESOME guest post coming soon on New Years Day! I am so excited about this and I know everyone will love it!





Thursday, December 25, 2014

THREE {the real reason for the Season}



Merry Christmas everyone! And boy has it been a good one.

On Sunday my good friend Raegan was giving a lesson in Sunday School. She shared a story that I instantly fell in love with. It's a story that follows the lives of three special trees and what they would tell you if they could talk. This story is the perfect story for this special occasion we celebrate on the 25th of December every year, but it also lays out a pattern we should follow during the other 264 days of our lives. This is the Story of the Three Trees:

Once there were three trees on a hill in the woods. They were discussing their hopes and dreams when the first tree said, "Someday I hope to be a treasure chest. I could be filled with gold, silver and precious gems. I could be decorated with intricate carving and everyone would see the beauty."
Then the second tree said, "Someday I will be a mighty ship. I will take kings and queens across the waters and sail to the corners of the world. Everyone will feel safe in me because of the strength of my hull."
Finally the third tree said, "I want to grow to be the tallest and straightest tree in the forest. People will see me on top of the hill and look up to my branches, and think of the heavens and God and how close to them I am reaching. I will be the greatest tree of all time and people will always remember me."
After a few years of praying that their dreams would come true, a group of woodsmen came upon the trees. When one came to the first tree he said, "This looks like a strong tree, I think I should be able to sell the wood to a carpenter,"and he began cutting it down. The tree was happy, because he knew that the carpenter would make him into a treasure chest.
At the second tree the woodsman said, "This looks like a strong tree, I should be able to sell it to the shipyard." The second tree was happy because he knew he was on his way to becoming a mighty ship.
When the woodsmen came upon the third tree, the tree was frightened because he knew that if they cut him down his dreams would not come true. One of the woodsmen said, "I don't need anything special from my tree, I'll take this one," and he cut it down.
When the first tree arrived at the carpenters, he was made into a feed box for animals. He was then placed in a barn and filled with hay.
This was not at all what he had prayed for. The second tree was cut and made into a small fishing boat. His dreams of being a mighty ship and carrying kings had come to an end. The third tree was cut into large pieces and left alone in the dark. The years went by, and the trees forgot about their dreams.
Then one day, a man and woman came to the barn. She gave birth and they placed the baby in the hay in the feed box that was made from the first tree. The man wished that he could have made a crib for the baby, but this manger would have to do. The tree could feel the importance of this event and knew that it had held the greatest treasure of all time.
Years later, a group of men got in the fishing boat made from the second tree. One of them was tired and went to sleep. While they were out on the water, a great storm arose and the tree didn't think it was strong enough to keep the men safe. The men woke the sleeping man, and He stood and said "Peace" and the storm stopped. At this time, the tree knew that it had carried the King of Kings in its boat.
Finally, someone came and got the third tree. It was carried through the streets as the people mocked the man who was carrying it. When they came to a stop, the man was nailed to the tree and raised in the air to die at the top of a hill. When Sunday came, the tree came to realize that it was strong enough to stand at the top of the hill and be as close to God as was possible, because Jesus had been crucified on it.
The moral of this story is that when things don't seem to be going your way, always know that God has a plan for you. If you place your trust in Him, He will give you great gifts. Each of the trees got what they wanted, just not in the way they had imagined. We don't always know what God's plans are for us. We just know that His ways are not our ways, but His ways are always best.
May your day be blessed. And until we meet again, may God cradle you in the palm of His hand.


As we celebrate Christmas we often make the mistake of leaving baby Jesus in the manger. We decorate with nativity sets and we sing of silent night, but we forget that Jesus didn't stay in the manger for very long.

On the last day before leaving on Christmas break I was sitting in a seminary assembly when we learned about the three levels of Christmas.

The first level is the level of Jingle Bells and Santa Clause. It is the level of stalkings and Rudolph, It is the level of elves and toys. While this level is fun, it often distracts from the more important levels of Christmas.

The second level is one of Jesus Christs birth. It includes silent night and nativity sets. When people tell the story of the birth of Jesus Christ, it is the second level in which they celebrate. While this is the most popular level when it comes to Christian Christmases, it is not the level we should stop at. Christ's birth was the most magnificent birth, but there is so much more to be celebrated when it comes to celebrating Christ. I do not remember who said it, but there is a quote that says "the man who leaves baby Jesus in the manger will be sorely disappointed." It is often said that if it wasn't for Christ's Atoning sacrifice, his birth would have been just another birth.

The third level of Christmas is possibly the most magnificent. The third level of Christmas follows Christ through the rest of his mortal ministry, and can also follow us into the rest of our year if we let it. This is the level of the Atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. This level of Christmas celebrates Jesus as the Christ. Jesus was foreordained before the earth was created to become our Savior, by suffering for all of our pains and afflictions, atoning for our sins, and ultimately suffering the pains of death so that we might be able to return to live with our Father in Heaven if we might repent. The third level of Christmas is the real reason for the season.


I love the above story because it does not leave baby Jesus in the manger, but also gives a small glimpse into his life and ministry, as well as give a reminder as to why Christ is so celebrated this season; because of his Atonement. 

I also love this story because it invites you to place yourself into Christ's story. It is a reminder that while Christ's birth, life, and death are the greatest gift you have ever been given, it will prophet you nothing unless you accept him into your life and follow his commandments. 

As this Christmas season comes to a close I hope you all take a minute to celebrate the real reason for the season, and in the words of Adam, our seminary council president, "I invite you to dedicate some time to our Savior, and appreciate his eternal sacrifice and his condescension, so that all mankind may be saved. It is his birthday after all!"


I love you all so much and am thankful for you every day of my life. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and all the joy I can summon. 




feel my sunlight






p.s. Santa brought me mission luggage! And fun fact... I can fit inside it! haha

 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

night changes

Does it ever drive you crazy 
Just how fast the night changes 
Everything that you’ve ever dreamed of 
Disappearing when you wake up 
But there’s nothing to be afraid of 
Even when the night changes


Well hello friends!

Have you ever just listened to a new album all the way through and had it speak to ever aspect of your life at that very moment? I have had One Directions new album playing for the last hour and a half and words can't even describe my emotions right now.



Does it ever drive you crazy just how fast the night changes?

I can't even explain how much this is about my life in this exact moment. It seems that my world is spinning at a million miles an hour in the right direction. It's almost like I have just begun to breath the most beautiful air just as the realization that it's all about to change knocks the wind out of me and I struggle to keep the last breath of sweet air in my lungs.

I don't know how else to explain it.

I was sitting here listening to this album when I came across a song called 18 when I thought "hey I'm 18!" but then literally thought "no... no that can't be right."

18 means I'm a senior in high school.
18 means my last year of public school.
18 means all the friends that I have gone to school with for as long as I can remember are about to become people I only see on Facebook.
18 means seminary council is almost over.
18 means my life right now is about to become memories.
18 means mission papers.
18 means college decision.
18 means graduation.
18 means this is my last Christmas before I leave on a mission.
18 means attending the farewells of all of my friends.
18 means my night is changing.

As I pondered these things I realized just how fast these changes are happening and just how little I can do to stop it.

Santa has bought and wrapped my mission luggage, and the colleges have my applications. Whether I like it or not things are about to change.

All my life has been planned up until graduation. Every year I left school in the Summer with complete assurance that I would find myself sitting in another desk within three months. This is the first time the plans have been changed.

While it's everything I've ever dreamed of-- Graduating, going on a mission, attending college-- It still drives me crazy just how fast the night is changing.

But even though it seems that things are about to change, many amazing things are happening as well!

While I've been away on holiday from my blog (do I sound British? Oh please say I sound British!) many things have happened!

Last weekend I went to Cotillion with the adorable Hayden Rigby and had a blast! Thanks again Hayden!

 

Turns out December was also a month for tumbling reunions. I got to see Anedy and Shawn who are some of my favorite former teammates at the Utah Gymnastics Preview...

 

and a few days after that I got a surprise call from one of my other former teammates, B, telling me to come to the gym because all my best friends were coming to visit!

 

It was so much fun to see everyone!

Another exciting gym happening took place at our annual competition team party which I was working. I was playing games with the 7 years old and under group when all of the sudden one of our little girls gets very big eyes and grabs onto me for dear life. I turned around to see a large Grinch walk into the gym just as a few other little girls begin to notice and demand hugs. All the older kids thought he was awesome, but some of the little ones weren't convinced, which was great for me because now they all think I'm a superhero because I saved them from the scary Grinch. And then after the Grinch left I gained a small fan club. It's moments like this when I love being a tumbling coach.



















And perhaps one of my favorite parts of December was our annual ginger bread making party with the Daniels. Which is technically a graham cracker making party because we can't handle real ginger bread. We have done this every year for as long as I can remember and this year is the last year that we will all be here since both Lauren and I will be on a mission next time this activity comes around. I'd say it was a success even though the houses haven't gotten any better over the years.



I'm also proud to say that my house is the only one still standing at my house.


December has been good and OH LOOK IT"S CHRISTMAS EVE!!! In case I don't get around to posting again before Christmas I hope everyone has a fantastic holiday and I wish you all the joy and happiness I can summon. Thank you all so much for taking the time to read my blog. Without you this blog would just be words in the universe. I love you all! Merry Christmas!



feel my sunlight



p.s. Since it's Christmas Eve, check out these two awesome videos!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

head Tilt Heavenward

Happy December everyone!

First I need everyone to admire this meme I found.



It is even funnier when you're a family history consultant...

This morning I attended a training for seminary class presidents because I am on seminary council. These trainings always make me look at the world a little differently. There is defiantly a modern army of Helaman walking the halls of Layton High.

For today's meeting we focused on two amazing conference talks that centered around the theme of loving people. You can watch or read those two talks HERE and HERE.

I learned two things this morning. Number one: If you only look down you will only see the concrete, It takes a head tilt heavenward to notice the pictures God has painted in the sky, and Number Two: you have superpowers.

Let me explain.

Because these meetings take place before school, I was lucky enough to be pulling into the parking log just as the sun came up. As I got out of my car and began to walk towards the building I was looking down at the ground and what I almost failed to notice was the magnificent sunrise that covered a good portion of the sky. I stood there for a second thinking.

Isn't this how life works? Most of the time we stare down at the concrete. We spend most of our time looking for unappealing things and searching for the negative pieces of our lives. The problem with looking for concrete is that we will find concrete. If we are living our lives searching for negative things we will inevitably find negative things.

I also realized that the next largest percentage of people are looking sideways. Many people are searching for Celestial happiness in a Telestial things, or in other words, there are those who look for happiness in worldly things.

I see this a lot in the world today. We look around us at the things in the world to find happiness. In a world were everything can be bought, pinned, or tweeted at the tips of our finger tips it seems that the tips of our fingers are the most natural place to look for happiness. We may see an occasional tree, or a interestingly built building, but these are not what we would call "beautiful." The only problem is that the happiness that comes from a funny pinterest post, or the thrill that comes from buying the perfect thing on Amazon is never enough to satisfy our soul's constant hunger for Celestial happiness.

And the most prevalent thing I learned this morning was that God has prepared us Celestial happiness, but that we must look Heavenward to find it. He has painted the most beautiful things above us because He want's us to show the faith it takes to look up. This kind of happiness can only be felt by those who take the time to open their scriptures, who attend church and strive to learn, who strive to uphold their callings, who serve others and who serve God. God always paints us beautiful pictures in the sky, and in the words of Thomas S. Monson,

"It's better to look up."

The second thing I learned was that I have superpowers.

One of our awesome seminary teachers shared a story about his son who has to receive weekly treatments at the hospital. He had been trying to teach his son to be more friendly and to get out of his shell a little bit. So he made him a deal that if he would say hi to one person that they saw at the hospital he would give him ice cream. The only catch was that it couldn't be a shy timid "hi", and that it had to be loud enough to hear.

So as they were walking into the hospital they saw an elderly couple leaving. Our seminary teacher pointed out to his son that those were perfect people to say hi to. So the little boy gave an over-enthusiastic, scream-like "HI" to the couple walking out. Startled by the powerful greeting from the little boy they both broke out in smiles.

My seminary teacher leaned down to him and said "DID YOU SEE THAT! They didn't have smiles before and now they do because you said hi to them! You have superpowers buddy!" and the little boy said "Like Superman?!" and the teacher said "yes! Like superman!" And the little boy proceeded to try it out on a few other people all giving him the same glorious response.

This simple story about a father and his little boy taught me that everyone has the super power to make someones day better. It doesn't take anything special. It doesn't take a lot of time or energy. All it takes is an enthusiastic "HI." A little love and interest can go a long way. People want to feel noticed and they want to feel important and your simple acknowledgement of their existence can go a long way in the lives of others.

So say hi to someone you wouldn't normally, send someone a text just to tell them you were thinking about them, send an email to a teacher thanking them for what they have done for you, volunteer to help serve someone in need. It doesn't take a lot from you, but it will mean a lot to them.


I just want to end with saying thanks to the people around me who lift me up everyday. I truly appreciate it.




feel my sunlight




p.s. can we please talk about this weeks episode of Heartland? I watched it last night and let's just say my reaction to the ending left me looking like this...


Where are my Heartland fans? I need to talk to you!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Belated thanks

eh isn't being sick the greatest thing?! *Sarcasm intended*

It looks like I'm overdue for a Thanksgiving post so I guess we'll pound one out right now!

Despite the fact that half of my family is sick with the stomach flu, I am still in awe at how many incredible things I have in my life to be thankful for! Upon reflection I've realized that my very favorite things in life are the people that surround me, so here is a non-inclusive list of a few of my favorites.

My family!
I love my family so much! It's on a regular basis that you can find me on all fours and crying because I am laughing so hard because of my family. There is never a dull moment when it comes to Reid family time. I am so thankful that I have such a good relationship with both my parents, as well as with all my siblings. I know so many people who have family feuds with members of their family, but I am so blessed to live in a family where love is spoken and where small arguments remain small. My sister and I are asked all the time if we ever get in fights. The answer is that our fights are seldom and far apart. I can honestly say that the members of my family are my very best friends. I'm thankful for a sister that shares sibling telepathy with me and who is capable of making painful situations bearable, and enjoyable situations even greater. I'm thankful for a little brother who will go to every extent to make me laugh and who finds joy in hanging out with his big sister. I'm thankful for a little sister who is my very best friend and who tells me her secrets and follows me around at the gym. I'm so glad I get to keep them for eternity!

I am also so thankful for my awesome extended families. I have defiantly been blessed with the best when it comes to grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. I am blessed to see some of them on a weekly basis, and others the reunions are more rare, but I love them all the same. I'm thankful for crazy uncles that provided the most painful tickle attacks as a kid, and who never cease to make me laugh. I'm thankful for the little cousins that greet me with running hugs, and for the older ones that always make me laugh. I'm thankful for grandparents that read all my posts, and who provide never ending love. Again, I'm so glad I get to keep them for eternity.

Seminary Council!
It is almost on a daily basis that I have to refrain from talking about how much I love them because I don't want other people to feel jealous. I am going to put that worry aside for a second because I need to express just how much I enjoy this wonderful group of people. I cannot express it in words how much I enjoy being on seminary council with these people. The members of this council have some of the strongest testimonies I have ever heard. I always look forward to our lunch meetings and they never last long enough. I wonder everyday how I was blessed to be able to work with such incredible people. Each of them have touched my life in ways they will never know. They have taught me so much and they have truly changed my life for the better. I don't have any idea how I am going to say goodbye to them at the end of the year... but we won't talk about that because it will make me cry. Let's just say this song represents my feelings about seminary council and that I cry every time I hear it because it reminds me that I have to say goodbye to them at the end of the year. I love you guys!



EFY!
This includes new friends and counselors alike. I first realized I had a testimony at my first EFY as a fourteen year old. My counselor, Kjarinda, challenged us to pray for ourselves to know if the Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints was true, and oh-boy! The prayer I said that night altered the entire course of the rest of my life more than any other single experience ever has. My testimony has grown so much since then, but I will forever be grateful for Kjarinda's righteous example in my life. EFY has also brought me many many other "blessings". I have been blessed with, in my opinion, the very best counselors and friends. I am thankful that I have been able to attend five different sessions since I was fourteen and that one of those was a trip to Palmyra, New York where I was able to visit the sights and places where the Church was first restored.

My gym!
I started tumbling when I was seven, but I have been with my gym since I was a timid eleven year old. In the early years we tumbled in a match-box sized room with only a few mats and a very small trampoline. I was blessed to be on my gym's very first competition team that consisted of only fourteen competitors. We have grown so much since then. Tumbling on the team has allowed me to travel to places I would never have been, and to meet and become friends with some of the most incredible and influential names in the sport as well as in my life. I remained on the competition team up until August of this year when I traded my spot on the team, for a spot as a competition coach. I am so thankful for my boss/coach, Jill, who has become my second mother in the sense that she watched me grow up. I am thankful she hired me to start assistant teaching classes when I was thirteen, and for providing me with the very best job for the last five years. I have been able to teach hundreds of children in that time and I have been touched so much by each child that has ever called me "teacher". I'm thankful for all the teammates I have had since I was eleven. I love you all so stinkin much. I also need to give a huge thanks to all my coaches that have touched my life. Thank you thank you thank you Steph for going beyond your job as my coach and for becoming one of my very best friends and mentors. I always know I can trust you to help me with anything. You always give the best advice when it comes to tumbling or life. And thank you to Nicole, Riane, Jake, Ashley, and Lance for everything you have ever done for me. And thank you to Justen and Sandy for being my "coaches from another team". I don't have any idea what my life would be like if I had never walked into that little gym when I was eleven, but I do know it has blessed my life for the better.

I have SO MANY other people in my life that I want to thank including the Daniels, school friends, teachers, church friends, and blog friends, and the random kid down the street that eats nothing but saltines and mayo. (that's a Psych reference, in case you were wondering) but unfortunately, this whole "stomach flu" thing is making me tired. I want you all to know how much I love and appreciate your presence in my life. I wouldn't be who I am today if it weren't for the people I have associated with for the last eighteenth years. Thank you for everything.


feel my sunlight


p.s. Well, now that I've finally caught up on Thanksgiving... BRING IT ON CHRISTMAS!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

happy things


Today was the most beautiful day and I don't even know why. Everything just feels right.
Isn't the Ogden temple just gorgeous?




I had an awesome opportunity to speak at stake conference on Sunday. My talk was about family history work. It went well and It was such an awesome experience. When I was talking to one of my friends about speaking at the tabernacle I said "IT SEATS LIKE A THOUSAND PEOPLE...."  and she said "That's okay because you're short so only 100 will be able to see you." And then when I got up to the pulpit I was so short that I couldn't even see the front three rows unless I stood on my tippy toes. So I shared that joke and got the loudest laugh of the entire conference. And my talk went really well and I know the spirit was the actual speaker of that meeting because that was defiantly not me talking.

I need you all to go read this post right now. It's not long and it will only take you two seconds. It is one of the happiest things I have read in a while. Marie-Rose is the author of the blog Hope Always and Pray Constantly and we have become blog friends over the last year. She is a convert to the LDS church and her blog is her conversion story and her life as a convert to the church. This is my very favorite post of hers because it announces that SHE WAS BAPTIZED ON SATURDAY and I am so excited for her. Congrats girl! Welcome to the single thing that has brought me the most happiness to my life. I hope it brings you the same joy. I have such a strong testimony of this gospel and I know that Jesus Christ loves me so much and that he loves Marie-Rose, and that he also loves every single person reading this. He loves you. Congrats again girl!!

This month our seminary council has had the seminary students send gratitude grams to their friends to let them know that they are thankful for them. I don't know if it is because I spent several hours sorting them today, or the fact that Thanksgiving is next week, but gratitude is in the air and I think I've come down with the grateful-flu. Here are some of my happy things.

Like I said, I spent several hours in the seminary building today. Sometimes it feels like I live there. Which is a happy thing because it is one of my very favorite places to be. I just need to say that I am so very grateful for the opportunity I've been given to serve on seminary council with such incredible people. I cannot express how much I love each person on the council. I am humbled everyday at how much good comes from the people in that building. You bring me so much joy and there is never a boring moment when I am with anyone from the council. Thank you for your greatness. I love you all so much! ahhh so many feels. Dearest, Adam, Kami, Haden, SaBree, Fletcher, Alli, Matt, and Ginny... you rock my socks. If you want to know what it is like to be on sem council with you, imagine a midget at an amusement park where none of the rides have height restrictions. Also, the food is free.

I also had a kick-butt workout with Emily today. Shout out to Emily and Mckenna for being the very best gym friends! I always have so much fun and I always enjoy working out with you two. You always motivate me to do my best and I also love that the conversations with you two are always clean and positive. You are both so very awesome.

I am so extremely grateful for my job as a tumbling coach. I taught a class yesterday where five girls learned how to do their back handsprings alone for the first time. I also taught a class of two-four year olds where I got attacked with hugs, and I also had a little girl tell me she loved me and that she loves coming to tumbling. I seriously am so grateful that I have been blessed with this opportunity to teach such amazing angels. If I'm ever having a bad day or I feel like I'm not good enough my children always make me feel better.

I also need to express my sincerest gratitude for Raegan and Kenley who are two of my very favorite people. They are always able to make me laugh so hard and I always seem to end up singing when I'm around them. They are always so happy and they make me happy. Tonight for Young Men/Young Womens we quilted blankets for the church's humanitarian effort and Raegan and Kenley were the greatest entertainment. I love you guys!

Today was such a good reminder that things are actually good in the world. That even though sometimes life happens, and sometimes we still have to do math homework, I can chose to be happy. And I'm thankful for that.




feel my sunlight



p.s. What makes you grateful?




Saturday, November 15, 2014

Gratitude Grams


mmm... The world has left me breathless lately.

The way the seasons change is enchanting and I love it, even if it does mean I do have to double and triple layer all my clothes.

I've reticently created a new portfolio site, which is still in the works, but if you feel so inclined you can CLICK HERE to check it out!

Yesterday we had a party at one of my young women leaders house and one of the leaders, Sister Hartvigsen, walked in with a plastic grocery sack. When we inquired about the contents she replied, "I brought my favorite treat..." Being sure to leave dramatic suspense she then added, "MEN!!!" As she pulled out an assortment of ken dolls in scout uniforms. We died. Each of us now have a new bæ and I couldn't be happier about it.

Aren't they the cutest?!
 
And in other exciting news, shout out to Briana and Allison who are both turning 18 today!!! I hope you guys had the BEST BIRTHDAY EVER!!! :)

This week has been awesome and I'm finishing it off with speaking at STAKE CONFERENCE tomorrow. TOMORROW! I'm freaking out, but it all the best ways.

On an unrelated note, my life has been centered around gratitude lately. Gratitude grams that is. I am on the seminary council at my school and for the month of November we've been having the student body write gratitude grams, which are little slips of paper that students write notes to their friends to tell them how grateful they are for them.

We had a lunch activity this week where everyone came and ate graham crackers (see what we did there?!) and wrote gratitude grams. It was a blast and I must say that I am so thankful for this opportunity to serve on seminary council. I absolutely love the people I work with and I wouldn't trade them for the world.

Here are some cute pictures I took at the lunch activity.







So in spirit of the month of the month of thanks I want to challenge everyone at my school to keep sending gratitude grams, and I want to challenge everyone else to send a text or leave a note for someone you are thankful for, because they need to know.




feel my sunlight



p.s. Go read this blog. Exciting things are happening over there.





Saturday, November 8, 2014

Future Sister Missionaries, Al Fox, and BYU Vocal Point

DISCLAIMER: This was the coolest day ever!

I am a part of a Facebook group called Many are called.... but few are sisters and this group is specifically for future sister missionaries and RMs and it is full of some of the coolest people I've ever met. Everything regarding serving as a sister is talked about in this group and I have learned so much from the comments and testimonies of these lovely sisters.

Every once and a while they have a meet-up at temple square. Where they get together and take pictures and sing songs and share excitement about serving missions.

I attended the meet-up today and it was a BLAST! I have never been with so many people that were so excited to serve the Lord. You could just feel the excitement in the air and I can honestly say that I fell in love with each of these girls even though I didn't know most of them. They are truly God's army and Satan had better hide because these girls are mighty! Here are a few pictures from the meet-up courtesy of the awesome photographers that came to take pictures of the group!

Me and my BFF/XTEAM MATE/CO-WORKER Teri
Kaitlyn and her cute flag
 
 


But wait! The excitement doesn't stop there!

After the meet up a few of us were walking around temple square when I recognized a familiar face. {Spoiler: This face can be found at the bottom of my left column!} In case you are too lazy to scroll down that far we saw AL FOX CARRAWAY!!!  With her husband Ben, and their cute baby girl Gracie.

It took us a second to register that it was actually them and then as soon as it hit that it was ACTUALLY AL FOX we flipped out. For those of you who don't know who Al Fox is you should really read her blog. She is my very favorite blogger, and my very very very favorite speaker. (remember when I went to a fireside she spoke at HERE?) She is seriously the kind of person I want to be when I grow up and she is a HUGE inspiration for my motivation to be a blogger.

So naturally when one sees one of their biggest idols they begin to panic and freak out. As did I and the cute girls I was with. And by the time we had contained ourselves enough to be able to go say hi she was gone...

BUT!

I tweeted her and this conversation followed...


So we ran as fast as we could over to H&M and found her in the men's section. I went up to her and was like "Hey, I'm the one tweeting you!" and she was super cool and talked to us for a little while and then took a picture with us. She is seriously so fun and I am so grateful I was able to meet her and talk to her today!


But wait! The excitement doesn't stop there!

When I got home my family notified me that we were going to go see BYU Vocal Point! They were incredible and I loved every second of their concert! If you've never heard their music click HERE!

video video

So I'd say it was a successful day! Went to a future sister missionary meet-up, met my idol Al Fox, and went to see BYU Vocal Point in concert! I'm on cloud 9.




feel my sunlight




p.s. SHOUT OUT TO ADAM DUMMER WHO TURNS 18 IN 3 MINUTES!!!

p.s.s. Okay... Watch this video. <3

Friday, November 7, 2014

Letters from Heaven

 

Sometimes you just need days like today to remind you that the world is okay and that pieces of it are rather magnificent. Yup. That about sums up my day.

We were sitting in second period today when we received word that school would get out at 11:15 thanks to broken water pipes. WAHOO! 

There are beautiful things happening people.

And before I get into my post I have a few birthday shutouts, because apparently the next few days are popular days for awesome people to be born.

so...
S/O to Makena who is turning 19 TODAY! I am so happy I was able to meet you last year at EFY! You are one of the funnest people I have ever met and you were a fantastic roommate. Thank you for your strong testimony and for being so fun! I miss you bunches and I hope you had the grandest day ever! 

S/O to Adam who is turning 18 on Sunday! You are seriously one of the very coolest people I know. You are a fantastic Seminary council president and I am so happy I am able to serve on council with you. You are such a great example to me and the rest of the school. I hope you know that people look up to you. Thank you for your testimony and for being my friend. I hope you have the greatest birthday ever!

S/O to Raegan who is turning 17 on Monday! I love you so much Raeg! I couldn't have asked for a better friend to fly to New York with me! New York with you was seriously one of the very best weeks of my life and I will never forget it! You always brighten the room with your happy outlook on life. Thank you for being such a great friend to me for all these years. I love you so much girl! Have the happiest of birthdays!
  
Since I can't think of an efficient transition from birthdays to what I wanted to post about I will just jump right into it.

I've been busy. And by busy I mean I have such a long list of things to do that I probably shouldn't be blogging right now. I have three callings, all of which have provided me with many many great things to do, I am teaching a leadership training lesson to the seminary class presidents next week, and next Sunday I am speaking at stake conference. I also teach 9 tumbling classes (which I love!) which also require intensive lesson planning outside of work. And all of that in addition to school and homework have provided me with quite the "to do" list, and while I absolutely LOVE everything I am doing and wouldn't change it for anything, I was feeling a little overwhelmed.

I was sitting in my seminary class the other day when we came upon a verse of scripture that hit me really hard. It was exactly what I needed in that moment. So I replaced the name written in it to say "Whitney".

"Behold, verily, verily, I say unto my servant Whitney, 
I have looked upon thee and thy works. 
I have heard thy prayers, and prepared thee for a greater work. 
Thou art blessed, for thou shalt do great things."
-Doctrine & Covenants 35:3-4

The part that hit me the very most was phrase "I have heard thy prayers."

I see it like this:

I am sitting here on earth writing "letters" (aka saying prayers) to God about the things that are happening in my life. And I am then tossing them towards the ceiling in hopes that they somehow make it to heaven. However, sometimes It seems that these letters just hit the ceiling and fall back down. Because obviously paper can't fly through ceilings. 

However, the contrary is actually true. Not only do your prayers make it past your ceiling, but they actually make it the God's office. It would be efficient for God to have a secretary read all the letters and respond to them, but instead I believe he has his heavenly secretaries deliver the letters right to his office and he reads each one individually, and he responds to each one individually.

He reads your letters.

My most resent letter to him was that I was stressed with everything to do and I didn't feel that I was good enough to get it all done with the kind of quality that he expects. So he sent me a letter back to let me know that he has looked at the work I have done, and he has read my letter. He reassured me by letting me know that I was prepared for all the things I am doing, and he also let me know that I will do great things.

I'm grateful for letters sent from Heaven.




feel my sunlight



p.s. I just want to live on a cute farm with lots of trees and have a horse named Starlight and listen to country music and wear cowboy boots and go to hoedowns and marry a cute cowboy like in the movies.   #WhitneyThoughts


Saturday, October 25, 2014

6 things that make life more beautiful

Hello my darling people!

Could somebody please tell me when October happened? This has seriously been one of the quickest months I have ever experienced. It's like I blinked and now it is almost over. What happened?

Life is joyous right now. No, I'm not saying that there aren't rotten things in the fridge, or that difficult things aren't happening, I am saying that there is joy in the world right now and that you can reach it. Here are six things that have made my life more beautiful lately. I'm not promising they will do the same for you, but I hey, give it a try and let me know!


#1 Scripture Study


I know, I know. You've heard this before. But when was the last time you sat down and studied instead of simply read? I promise it will make life taste sweater no matter how bitter life tastes right now.

#2 Mindy Gledhill music


Seriously. I have been obsessing over her stuff all week. It's all 100% clean and 100% beautiful. I mean, how can you not love this?



Also, I tweeted about my current obsession with her music the other day and she favorited it. I was a happy camper.

#3 Other Happy People

In the words of Kate Bratskeir, who was quoted by Hank Smith at BYU education week: 

"Happy people surround themselves with other happy people. Joy is contagious. People are four times more likely to be happy in the future with happy people around them."

My "happy people" right now would have to be the seminary council that I serve on. I have hundreds of other people who would be included in this category, but the other students on seminary council are the very best at this. When I'm with the council there is an abundance of laughter and smiles even though we are doing work. I can honestly say that I never hear complaining when I'm with this group, which is something I don't think I can say about any other group of people I've ever associated with. As humans we like to complain. And these people make me see the joy in the world.

#4 Gifts from Children

Two of my cute tumbling students gave me this elastic bracelet today. There is nothing like a handmade gift from a child to make you feel loved. I have the best job ever. 


 

#5 Old Journal Entries


I was going through the notes on my phone the other day and I found this gem that I wrote back in 2012:

"Television characters have everything. A perfect life, minimal problems, a good romance, and sometimes even fantastic events that are unlikely to happen. 

I've always watched TV in awe at how perfect the lives of the characters are, and in turn sat in awe at how perfect my life is not. 

But what I've never seen on a TV show is a character laugh so hard they end up on all fours so they don't wet themselves. And I've done that twice today. So I'll take my imperfect laughter over any perfect tv show life any day."

I am a journal junkie. I love writing and my very favorite thing is to go back and read old journals, notes, and blog posts. It's my favorite thing.


 #6 Family Time!

I went with my family last week to go see the witches at Gardner Village. Hanging out with my family is my very favorite thing. I don't know how I'm going to be able to leave them to serve a mission in a year. They are truly the greatest. 

I carried around my fancy pants camera like the good photographer I dream of being. The results were the epitome of a blogger's paradise. I love fall!













What makes your life beautiful?



 feel my sunlight

Sunday, October 12, 2014

I'm gonna run right up this hill.

I just thought I'd bust out a quick post while I wait for the washer to finish so I can switch my laundry. No I did not procrastinate my laundry until the last minute, I simply planned not to do it until it was absolutely necessary. So here I am at the end of a near perfect Sunday night waiting for the suds machine to finish so that I don't have to wear dirty socks tomorrow. BUT ENOUGH ABOUT LAUNDRY! Let's talk about Church. (my favorite topic!)

Tonight was our ward's Young Women in Excellence. This is a night held once a year in which the girls are recognized for their accomplishments in Personal Progress. I need to make a HUGE shout out to Rylee, Raegan, and Meagan for getting their young women medallions today! Wear them with joy ladies! Seriously, I'm typing congrats so hard!

For those of you don't know, earning a young women's medallion is a big deal. You start this project when you are twelve, and it often takes until the end of your young women years (around age 16-18) to finish. That's 4-6 years of incredibly hard work. It takes over 80 hours to finish the 8 projects alone, and that doesn't include the 60 other smaller projects you have to complete. And when you are done with that big feat, you have the chance to earn an Honor Bee, which requires you to re-read the Book of Mormon, as well as complete 40 hours of service.

So as you can imagine, this is a big night for these three awesome girls. But what about for me?

I didn't receive any awards tonight. I didn't get any special recognition because I've already been awarded these great awards. I received my medallion back in February of 2013, and I received my Honor Bee not long after that. But what I didn't realize until tonight is that I've already begun my next big project. And when I receive this next award it won't be a charm to hang around my neck, but a badge I will wear on my chest. My next big project will look something like this...





So the project begins now. I am in the race to prepare to serve a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints. I have roughly 160 days (ABOUT 5 MONTHS!) until I can begin my papers, 220 days until I can submit them, and 340 days until I can leave, and everyday in between will hopefully be filled with striving to become the kind of person that the Lord would want to have wear his name over their heart 24/7. It will take a lot of hard work, but I am so excited for this next big project. I'm gonna run right up this hill.







feel my sunlight



p.s. This song by Mindy Gledhill is my theme song right now. It was in the movie Meet the Mormons which I went to go see last night. It was serously so incredible! Go see it!
p.s.s. My laundry is done! Peace out world.

Friday, October 10, 2014

glorious

 Oh my! Life is beautiful; busy, but beautiful. Life is glorious.





Remember when my mom was a rather popular DIY blogger before she dropped off the face of blog land? (Seriously... Check out this post from back in 2008 when I wore super cute scrunchies and my mom taught me how to install door frames. This is quality stuff.) Anyways, since my mom doesn't post her fancy projects anymore I thought I would. Her latest included a re-painted kitchen table, as well as several re-painted kitchen chairs in various colors. I'm kinda obsessed with the whole miss-matched color thing so I dragged them all outside and stacked them on top of each other. The pictures above are the result.

Life as been a serious balancing act reticently (see what I did there?!), and by "balancing act" I mean there are SO MANY awesome things happening that they are hard to handle. But somehow I've managed to keep them all stacked in such a way that they have created quite the entertaining spectacle.

This past week has been so crazy. When you can say you went to a homecoming football game, went zip lining, watched conference (which deserves it's very own blog post, so stay tuned), went to school, coached 9 tumbling classes, had three meetings, learned about velocity-time graphs, the primary colors of physics, and jig lines, began filming a campaign video for mock elections in Government, started applications for college, and created a video game all in the same week you know you have a busy life. And oh how I'm glad it's the weekend and that my only tasks for the rest of the day is to finish this blog post and buy myself a new journal.

Me, my cute friends, and our awesome guides after zip lining on Saturday!


So life is busy. But it is so so beautiful.

One of the most beautiful moments of the week was yesterday when my 9 year old sister asked me what the word "apostasy" meant. So I taught her the first discussion from Preach My Gospel. #BOOMBOOMPOW

This was seriously so cool for me. I have practiced teaching this discussion so many times in my mission prep class, but I have never actually taught it to someone that wasn't just pretending not to know the answers. It was such a real missionary discussion, yet it was extra special because she is my baby sister. I am defiantly going to love the missionary life when it calls.

My second beautiful moment came when I asked one of my tumbling classes what they thought I should be for haloween when one of my 3 year old students shouted "PINK PRINCESS UNICORN KITTY!" I think I might just have to do that.

So I'd say it was a successful week! Long and brutal yes, but also glorious.





feel my sunlight


p.s. Isn't David Archuleta just the coolest? That song is from the movie Meet the Mormons that premiered in theaters TODAY! I can't wait to go see it!
p.s.s. For those of you who don't know. I am a Mormon. Nice to meet you!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

autumn is my favorite holiday

Happy October!

On Sunday all the Laurels in my ward were piled in a car on our way to visit a one of our wonderful girls who wasn't at church. While riding in the car we were discussing how much we liked autumn when one of the girls said "fall is my favorite holiday" meaning to say "fall is my favorite season." We laughed hard and later decided that fall was defiantly a holiday. Therefore it should be celebrated.

I love fall. Not in the stereotypical pumpkin-spice-everything-loving-white-girl kinda way, but more in the I've-been-living-on-this-earth-for-18-years-and-have-never-noticed-how-pretty-changing-leaves-are-until-now kinda way, which is why I've reticently created a Pinterest board titled "Autumn is my favorite holiday" which makes me so darn happy and boy am I itching for some fall photo sessions! And I'm also lovin' fall in the man-all-these-bloggers-are-going-on-cool-fall-adventures-I-want-an-adventure-kinda-way. And to satisfy that need I am going zip lining this weekend and I can't even stand how excited I am!

And oh how exciting this moment in time is for so many reasons. I love how the change in seasons always brings so much excitement. Here is my list of excitings for the foreseeable future. (yes, I did just decide to turn 'exciting' into a noun... deal with it.)

1. Homecoming Football Game this Friday!! Always an exciting thing about fall.
2. Zip lining on Saturday. Happy birthday to me!
3. General Conference. What?! That is this week?! You bet it is! Conference is my very most favorite thing ever. (It is equivalent to Christmas.) Y'all had better watch it!
4. Meet the Mormons. That cool new movie that is coming out on October 10th about those people called the Mormons (hint hint I'm a "Mormon"). I can't wait to see this movie and for the world to see just what the Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints (aka the Mormons) is all about! Check out this awesome movie trailer!



5.Witch Fest at Gardner Village. Seriously the best part of Halloween.
6. Food. The food is always better when it's cold outside.
7. Family and friends. Because I'm really enjoying the people around me right now. People are really great.


So I'm excited for fall and life is awesome. What else is new?



feel my sunlight



p.s. If you haven't checked out this yet... you should. It's going to be awesome. I'll share more about it later.
P.s.s. Even though it's fall I'm wearing flip flops today... Because a little piece of my heart still wants summer.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Prophet's speak still


     

I am loving studying the Doctrine and Covenants and History of the church so much this year in seminary. We reticently had a lesson that sparked great interest in me to study more about the man by the name of Oliver Cowdery.
What I discovered was one of the most powerful piece of scripture I have ever read.

Oliver Cowdery was a school teacher. And at the time school teachers would live with you at your house (can you imagine waking up every morning and walking into your kitchen to find your teacher waiting to have breakfast with you? haha)

While Joseph Smith was in Harmony Pennsylvania working on the translation of the Book of Mormon, Oliver was residing at Joseph Smith's family's home in Palmyra, New York. The two had never met, but because Oliver was living with Joseph's family he began to hear about Joseph and the work he was doing in Pennsylvania. He became very interested in this work and began to feel a desire to go to Pennsylvania.

Little did Oliver know that Joseph had been praying to the Lord to send him help.

A few days after Joseph prayed, Oliver knocked on his door. Oliver had walked all the way from Palmyra to Harmony and had become an answer to Joseph's prayer.

Oliver was called to become a scribe for Joseph. And since I will never be able to dictate his experience as well as he did I am going to post his own words. (This can be found at the very end of Joseph Smith--History) These are Oliver's words, with my highlights in different colors and annotations in {brackets}.

    {I love this!}
  • Oliver Cowdery describes these events thus: “These were days never to be forgotten—to sit under the sound of a voice dictated by the inspiration of heaven, awakened the utmost gratitude of this bosom!Day after day I continued, uninterrupted, to write from his mouth, as he translated with the Urim and Thummim, or, as the Nephites would have said, ‘Interpreters,’ the history or record called ‘The Book of Mormon.’
  • “To notice, in even few words, the interesting account given by Mormon and his faithful son, Moroni, of a people once beloved and favored of heaven, would supersede my present design; I shall therefore defer this to a future period, and, as I said in the introduction, pass more directly to some few incidents immediately connected with the rise of this Church, which may be entertaining to some thousands who have stepped forward, amid the frowns of bigots and the calumny of hypocrites, and embraced the Gospel of Christ.
      • {Oh how I want to be counted among these incredible Saints}
  • “No men, in their sober senses, could translate and write the directions given to the Nephites from the mouth of the Savior, of the precise manner in which men should build up His Church, and especially when corruption had spread an uncertainty over all forms and systems practiced among men, without desiring a privilege of showing the willingness of the heart by being buried in the liquid grave, to answer a ‘good conscience by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.’
  • “After writing the account given of the Savior’s ministry to the remnant of the seed of Jacob, upon this continent, it was easy to be seen, as the prophet said it would be, that darkness covered the earth and gross darkness the minds of the people.   
      • {And it is getting darker}
  •  On reflecting further it was as easy to be seen that amid the great strife and noise concerning religion, none had authority from God to administer the ordinances of the Gospel. For the question might be asked, have men authority to administer in the name of Christ, who deny revelations, when His testimony is no less than the spirit of prophecy, and His religion based, built, and sustained by immediate revelations, in all ages of the world when He has had a people on earth? If these facts were buried, and carefully concealed by men whose craft would have been in danger if once permitted to shine in the faces of men, they were no longer to us; and we only waited for the commandment to be given ‘Arise and be baptized.’
  • “This was not long desired before it was realized. The Lord, who is rich in mercy, and ever willing to answer the consistent prayer of the humble, after we had called upon Him in a fervent manner, aside from the abodes of men, condescended to manifest to us His will. On a sudden, as from the midst of eternity, the voice of the Redeemer spake peace to us, while the veil was parted and the angel of God came down clothed with glory, and delivered the anxiously looked for message, and the keys of the Gospel of repentance. What joy! what wonder! what amazement! While the world was racked and distracted—while millions were groping as the blind for the wall, and while all men were resting upon uncertainty, as a general mass, our eyes beheld, our ears heard, as in the ‘blaze of day’; yes, more—above the glitter of the May sunbeam, which then shed its brilliancy over the face of nature! Then his voice, though mild, pierced to the center, and his words, ‘I am thy fellow-servant,’ dispelled every fear. We listened, we gazed, we admired! ’Twas the voice of an angel from glory, ’twas a message from the Most High! And as we heard we rejoiced, while His love enkindled upon our souls, and we were wrapped in the vision of the Almighty! Where was room for doubt? Nowhere; uncertainty had fled, doubt had sunk no more to rise, while fiction and deception had fled forever!
    • {Wow. Just wow.}
  • “But, dear brother, think, further think for a moment, what joy filled our hearts, and with what surprise we must have bowed, (for who would not have bowed the knee for such a blessing?) when we received under his hand the Holy Priesthood as he said, ‘Upon you my fellow-servants, in the name of Messiah, I confer this Priesthood and this authority, which shall remain upon earth, that the Sons of Levi may yet offer an offering unto the Lord in righteousness!’
  • “I shall not attempt to paint to you the feelings of this heart, nor the majestic beauty and glory which surrounded us on this occasion; but you will believe me when I say, that earth, nor men, with the eloquence of time, cannot begin to clothe language in as interesting and sublime a manner as this holy personage. No; nor has this earth power to give the joy, to bestow the peace, or comprehend the wisdom which was contained in each sentence as they were delivered by the power of the Holy Spirit! Man may deceive his fellow-men, deception may follow deception, and the children of the wicked one may have power to seduce the foolish and untaught, till naught but fiction feeds the many, and the fruit of falsehood carries in its current the giddy to the grave; but one touch with the finger of his love, yes, one ray of glory from the upper world, or one word from the mouth of the Savior, from the bosom of eternity, strikes it all into insignificance, and blots it forever from the mind. The assurance that we were in the presence of an angel, the certainty that we heard the voice of Jesus, and the truth unsullied as it flowed from a pure personage, dictated by the will of God, is to me past description, and I shall ever look upon this expression of the Savior’s goodness with wonder and thanksgiving while I am permitted to tarry; and in those mansions where perfection dwells and sin never comes, I hope to adore in that day which shall never cease.”Messenger and Advocate, vol. 1 (October 1834), pp. 14–16.
      • {He is the only way to true happiness}


Never in my life have I read a testimony with as much enthusiasm as this testimony written by Oliver Cowdery.

I was enchanted by the words "These were days never to be forgotten" because these are truly magnificent times. We live in a time on earth where miracles are happening around us. We live in a time that is paving the way for the Lord to come again. Last week I participated in the dedication of a temple of the Lord. This is just one example of the incredible things that are happening around us that we will remember for eternities.

I was also impressed by the description of his experience. I love the words he uses; "What joy!" "What wonder!" "What amazement!" "above the glitter of the May sunbeam." "pierced to the center"
I love these phrases because they accurately describe my feelings of the gospel. too often church is just something we do, and not enough something we feel. Oliver's testimony is a reminder of the great joy the gospel can bring us. This gospel is the only way to the truest happiness.


I just want to add my testimony to Oliver Cowdery's that I am enthralled with the greatness of this gospel. It brings me so much joy and It is this joy that I want to share with the world.

Now I never sat with the prophet one on one and heard him tell me what the Lord wants me to know, but I have sat with the Prophet one on millions and heard him tell me what the Lord wants me to know. And I get to experience this every six months.

Every six months we have the opportunity to listen to the prophet speak at General Conference. Every six months we get to hear prophet's speak just like Oliver did back in 1834.



I can't wait for conference next week. And for all the lovely females that are reading I want to let you know about the General Women's meeting. The General Women's meeting is an extension of conference where the prophet's speak directly to the women of the church. This will be broadcasted TONIGHT! I can't wait! You can watch it right on my blog below, or CLICK HERE to see other ways you can view live.


Be prepared for many more conference posts. For me Conference is about the equivalent to Christmas, so you can imagine I'm just a little excited. I love you all lots and lots!


feel my sunlight



p.s. Did I just write two blog posts in one day?! What is life?