Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Happiness Is...

Wow, I can't believe it is already the end of November. I have really enjoyed doing this challenge of blogging things I am thankful for. It's helped me open my eyes to the many blessings I have around me. There were several days during the month where I truly didn't think I had anything to be thankful for, but as I went about my day and pondered on it I found something. Someday's it was something simple other days it was something big that had happened. Over all I learned that if I look hard enough I can always find something to be grateful for.

Today I am simply grateful for all the little things. Every day is a blessing. I love the following Charlie Brown clip, this song is the epitome of what I am thankful for.

I couldn't have said it better if I'd written the song myself. I am so grateful for all the little things that make me happy!

Monday, November 29, 2010

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

Thanksgiving is over which means that Christmas is just around the corner. I spent several hours putting up all my Christmas decorations yesterday and if I do say so myself the house looks wonderful! I love putting up the decorations each year. It is such a magical time for me. I don't rush it, I take my time and do it all very thoughtfully. As I "poof" out the branches on my Christmas tree I think of all the years we would gather as a family in the living room and we'd each take a section of the tree to "poof". It was almost a race to see who could get done with their section first. My tree is pre-lit which is a good thing, cuz I'm not very good at putting the lights on the tree, that was always mom's job...she did it best! I love pulling out my ornaments one by one and thinking of the memories they hold. Some are new and some I made when I was 5 or 6. Some were given to me by special friends I've lost touch with. My favorite 2 are of the nativity. I have one ornament of the nativity that is gold with a shimmery backdrop that looks awesome when the lights reflect off of it. I've had this ornament for as long as I can remember. It has always been my favorite. We used to hang it on the tree every year, then my mom started doing the tree in themes. I would always put the ornament up and she would take it down again saying it didn't fit in with the theme of the tree. However, no matter how many times we went through that routine I always snuck back and put it on the tree. It's just not Christmas without that ornament. Because of my fascination with snowglobes I have a lot of Christmas ones. Normally they just sit on a shelf in my office room, but at this time of year they are brought out and neatly placed all over the house, it's awesome! Just like my ornaments these snowglobes have a lot of meaning for me due to the stories behind each one. As I set up the different nativity sets I have I take time to ponder about the real reason for this season, the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. I feel close to the spirit as I delicately handle each piece of the nativity and contemplate what it would have been like to be there on that special night. Once all the decorations are in place I sit back and take a deep breath as I let the warmth of the season into my heart. It's such a special feeling. It's like a cure=all to any trial one may be facing.

I am so thankful for Christmas and special spirit it brings into my home and my life!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving Weekend.

A lot happened this weekend that I was thankful for. It would be long and crazy for me to give you details of it all, so you get the highlight reel!

1. Playing Littlest Pet Shops with Savannah.
2. Watching Isaac's face light up when he sees me coming. He's got the cutest little smile ever!
3. Watching the movie Tangled. My new favorite Disney movie.
4. Sweet Potato Balls...nuff said
5. Tickling Savannah to sleep while listening to her talk about dreams.
6. Sleeping in on Black Friday
7. Spending the day at Treehouse Museum with Savannah and Tara.
8. Jazz beating the Lakers
9. Mom paying my way into a movie to try and cheer me up.
10. Curling up with a blanket while watching the snow fall outside.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Art of Giving

This time of year we see a lot of two things; people who willingly give and people who can only think of their wants.

I ran to the grocery store tonight to get a few essentials for hunkering down during the blizzard...cookies, cheese & crackers, and some cider. Standing in line to pay for my necessities I witnessed something that touched my heart and opened my eyes to the needs of those around me. There were two people ahead of me in line. At the front was a man with a butt-load of groceries obviously following the Thanksgiving shopping list his wife gave him. Between us was a woman in a military uniform. She had an average amount of groceries and was obviously also planning for her Thanksgiving feast. The store was packed and the cashier was trying to get people checked out as quickly as possible. As she scanned the last of the man's items he motioned for her to continue and said he wanted to put the military womens groceries on his bill as well. The groceries were scanned and the man paid for everything. Picking up her sacks and heading for the door she tried to thank him but his only response was, "No, thank you!"

I am grateful for those who have mastered the art of giving. Those who give without thinking and without expecting anything in return. This time of year truly is about giving. I tend to look at my life and all the things I don't have and forget that there are others out there who have a lot less than I do. There are people who go without and sacrifice so much so that I may have the basic necessities that I take for granted as well as the extra goodies that I think are necessities. We all have something that someone else needs. Let's take some time this holiday season to give.

Monday, November 22, 2010


I say my prayers, morning and night, every day. I pray over all of my meals. I pray for the missionaries and Pres. Monson. I pray for friends and family. I ask for special blessings on those who I know are struggling. I am thankful when these prayers are answered. I am grateful for the miracles that come when faithful saints of God are joined together in prayer. However, today I am grateful for answers to different kinds of prayers. Today I am thankful for the answers that come to those silly prayers I pray. The ones where I ask for help finding my keys or that my hair will do what I want it to do so I can get somewhere on time.

Yesterday something silly went wrong with my computer. Nothing big, nothing that I couldn't live without, but it was an inconvenience, I prayed that Heavenly Father would help it to work as I restarted my computer several times, downloaded updated software, etc.. still nothing worked. I finally just resigned it was something I was going to have to deal with and moved on. This morning I turned on my computer and a little bubble popped up on the screen telling me to turn some component on. I clicked on it, and in seconds it fixed everything. I was thrilled.

This was something so simple. I'm sure as I prayed about it last night Heavenly Father sat there thinking, "Really? You can't live without that? There are people in the world that don't even know what a computer is and your fretting about this little thing?" Despite how silly of a thing it was to pray for I am super grateful that Heavenly Father listened and answered my prayer. Knowing that He cares enough to answer my silly pleas for assistance helps me to know that He is there listening when I pray for the big things too.

I love Him!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Shepherds and Rescuers

I love Sunday's! Today was our annual ward conference and it was absolutely wonderful!

In Sunday School we talked about shepherds. We discussed the people that we look up to and who have made a difference in shaping who we are. They are shepherds in our lives. They lead us by their wonderful examples and guide us to becoming a better person. They are non-judgmental and lead with love.

In sacrament meeting President Gerritsen talked about rescuers. People who reach out to help and lift others. They pray for those in need and immediately go out to help when prompted. They never give up and are persistent in their efforts to bless the lives of those around them.

I have been blessed to have some amazing shepherds and rescuers in my life. I wish I had time to list them all and tell each one of them how much they have made a difference in my life, here are just a few:

My Mom: My mom has put up with me for 29 years. During that time she has rescued me from more than one rough spot. She has been there through all of my health struggles. She is a strong woman and wonderful example to me. Her sense of humor has cheered me up on more than one bad day!

Jolyn Emerson: When I was a teenager I had my moments of misguided stupidity...what teenager doesn't...and during these years I was lucky enough to have Jolyn as one of my young women leaders. She was such an example to me. She saw potential in me that I didn't see in myself. She was always there to reach out with a loving hand and show me a better way.

Dave Dixon: My first high school seminary teacher. Bro. Dixon was the kind of teacher that taught me more by his actions than by his words. He truly lived the gospel, and quietly showed me how to as well. He started me on a path of discovering who I really was and the kind of person I wanted to be. I don't believe I would be the person I am today without the influence he had on me during that time of my life.

Marie Wilcox: I was a pretty shy and backwards person in high school. Yet, there was one teacher who truly saw something different in me. Mrs. Wilcox was my HOSA advisor. She took a shy girl and gave me a chance to be a leader. She gave me responsibility and taught me how to be a hard worker. Being an officer in HOSA taught me to have confidence in myself and the good things I was capable of doing. I learned how to step out of that shy bubble I was in and take charge when necessary. I'm not sure how she saw it, but somehow she knew there was a seed of leadership in me that simply needed to be watered.

Tim Carver: Bro. Carver was one of my teachers at the Institute. He is an excellent teacher and much of my gospel knowledge comes from things I learned in his classes. He taught me how to relate the gospel to my life and grow closer to my Heavenly Father as I lived those principles. I took many classes from him during my time up at the institute and somewhere along the line he became more than just another teacher, he became my friend. I started realizing that he was teaching me more outside of the classroom than in it. I was learning from his example and the way he lived his life. He has such a huge heart and was always there whenever I needed someone to talk to. He went above and beyond the call of duty to help me during some of the harder times of my life. It's been years since I sat in his classroom as a student, but Bro. Carver and I are still good friends. He always wants to know how I'm doing and puts my name in the temple if he learns I'm having a difficult time. He will always have a special place in my heart.

Bishop Shaffer: I know I already mentioned him in one of my recent posts, but he fits into both of these categories so well that I couldn't leave him out here. For the past three years Bishop Shaffer has been leading, guiding, and rescuing me as I've struggled down some dark and difficult pathways. He too has gone above and beyond the call of duty for me. He has taught me a lot about hard work and sincere love. With his help and guidance I have been able to overcome things I thought were impossible. I have been able to find help and healing. I've learned how to let down some of the walls I've built up since I was young and experience a new kind of life, a life I never knew was possible. He is the kind of person I can truly talk to about anything. He never gives up on me, even when I give up on myself.

I am deeply grateful for each of these people as well as the others I have failed to mention. I only hope and pray that I can pay it forward and be a shepherd and/or rescuer for someone else in need.

"If you don't spend your life caring for others, in the end, it will not matter what you cared about instead." -Bishop Shaffer

Saturday, November 20, 2010

My Hobbit Hole

In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort. - J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

This could be changed to say, "In a hole in the ground there lived Tiffany." I love living in my little hobbit hole. My own little hole in the ground filled with all the things that bring me comfort.

Today has been a pretty bleak day. Dark clouds hid the sun all day and rain poured down from the skies turning to snow as the day progressed. With the weather outside being so yucky I have been extremely grateful for my home and the safety it provides me from the storm. I am so blessed to have a roof over my head, good food to eat, and a warm bed to sleep in at night.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Silly Moments

Remember the Toys R' Us commercials with the catchy song, "I don't want to grow up I'm a Toys R' Us kid"? Well, I don't know about necessarily being a Toys R' Us kid, but I do feel like singing this today. I think growing up is overrated. I love the phrase that says, 'growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional." As we grow older I think it is important for us to hang on to a bit of that kid inside of us. I'm grateful for the moments in my life where I can just let go of the responsible adult I'm supposed to be and be as silly as a kid for a while. These are the moments that bring me joy. Some people may argue and say it's being immature and that I should act my age, but I believe there is a time and place for allowing the child in all of us to come out and play. I love my adult friends who have silly string fights at the Motel 6, I love going to midnight movies and cheering like high school kids when the show starts, I love making up actions to silly songs and then dancing them while sitting at red lights, I love molding a miniature Howarts out of mashed potatoes! Life is too mysterious to be taken serious. We need to have some fun in our lives. We need to take time to be silly and have a good laugh.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Giving Thanks on Difficult Days

A few weeks ago I got a card in the mail from a good friend of mine. The front cover reads, "How to Give Thanks on Difficult Days" on the inside is a poem that really applies to how I feel today.

How to Give Thanks on Difficult Days

Sometimes we can't thank God
For all we're going through,
But we can thank Him for the place
He's leading us to.

We know Christ wants what's best for us
And throughout life we've found
Each difficulty that we faced
Led us to Higher Ground.

-Perry Tanksley

Although there are little things I am thankful for today, like going to dinner and a movie with my sister, it has been a pretty melancholy day for me. There are things going on in my life that are tough and I don't feel in the mood to give thanks. Reading this poem helps me remember that there is a HUGE thing to be thankful for today, and that is the place that these rough times are leading me to. They are leading me back to my Heavenly Father. It's ok to not be thankful for the things I'm struggling through, but I need to be thankful for the one who is leading me through them. He has led me through every difficult struggle of my past and He's not going to give up on me now. I don't need to get on my knees tonight and thank Him for the awful day I had, but I do need to get on my knees and thank Him for walking it with me. He is my strength, without Him I wouldn't be able to overcome anything no matter how hard I tried. I am so grateful that He's not only there, He's the one in charge. If I stay close to Him, failure is not an option.

I love my Heavenly Father!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I Can Read!

Hooked on Phonics worked for me!

We make fun of the Hooked on Phonics commercials all the time, but I have to admit that I really am a true blue Hooked on Phonics graduate and must pay homage to my alma mater.

When I was very young I loved looking at picture books. My mom was intuitive enough to start me on the whole Hooked on Phonics program. I loved it! I had so much fun reading those stories and playing the games and listening to the tapes. I would practically beg my mom to let me do it. When I was in kindergarten I was reading on a second grade level. I could just pick up a book and read it with very little struggle if any. At the time I didn't understand why the other kids couldn't and why my teachers that it was so cool that I could. My love for reading never stopped. All throughout elementary school when they would do different skill tests my reading skills were always grades above where they should be for my age.

I was a HUGE book fair nerd...I know you're having a hard time picturing me as a nerd, but stretch the mind a bit and I'm sure you can see it...I loved getting all my books and going around meeting the different authors and having them sign my books. I only wish now that I had kept those books. I think my mom ended giving all of them to the DI. I think my parents hated book fair because I would literally drag them to every table; I couldn't possibly leave without meeting every author there. I also couldn't leave without at least one new book!

I am still a total bookworm. I have spent the majority of the day cuddled up to my copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I'm re-reading it in anticipation of the movie premiere this Thursday.

It makes me so happy to be able to read. In enlarges my brain and gets the creativity inside of me flowing. I love being able to just escape. When I read I become a part of the story I can literally do anything and be anything. Just like it says in this little clip from one of my fave tv shows growing up...

It is a wonderful blessing to be able to read!

Monday, November 15, 2010


I interrupt this regularly scheduled blog to announce a few changes. If you notice over on the side I have added a few pages...these are just a place where I will put videos and things that I really like but don't write an entire post about. Simply for my enjoyment and hopefully yours as well. One is more for fun and the other is more for a bit of spiritual upliftment.

The second bit of info that I have for you is that I have started a blog just for my creative writing. I love to write and do it mostly just for my own enjoyment, but I have had a strong feeling lately that I needed to share some of the things I write. I cannot guarantee what kind of things will end up on that site. A lot of what I write is based on emotion and if I'm having a difficult day I vent it out through my writing, for this reason some of the things I write may be a bit depressing to some. I will try not to post if they are too depressing, but it is my blog and my writing...the way I express who I am. If I post something you don't want to read then simply skip over it...don't judge me for it. I have put up a few of the things I've written in the past to get it started. http://mysterioussnowglobe.blogspot.com/ Let me know what you think.


"Ah! There is nothing like staying at home, for real comfort." -Jane Austen

Don't you just LOVE being comfortable? Ahh...it's one of the most wonderful feelings in the world. I absolutely love to get in my jammies, fix me a nice cup of cocoa or warm apple cider, light a fire in the fireplace, and spend the evening relaxing to a good move, tv show, or book. That is the perfect picture of comfort to me. It's best this time of year too, cuz cocoa and a fire in the middle of July just doesn't sound as cozy as in the middle of November! Some people probably think I'm a bit of a hermit crab because I love to spend my evenings this way, but to them I simply say.."If you want to see me just get your jammies on and come over!" Haha! Ok, you don't have to wear your jammies, just know I will be in mine!

I'm grateful for these wonderful relaxing nights at home!

Now I gotta go...the cocoa's done!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

My Bishop

We all have times where we need someone to talk to; someone who will listen to the joys and fears of our heart. The person I most often turn to in those moments is my Bishop. Meeting with my bishop gives me a chance to discuss challenges, disappointments, and accomplishments with the someone the Lord placed in my life with the specific direction to listen and to help. Over the last three years my bishop has gone from being a stranger over the phone to being one of my very best friends. He is someone I can truly talk to about anything. He is always there to listen and help where he can.

I've been struggling with something for a while now and last night I realized how much I needed to talk to Bishop about it. I sent him a text asking if he had any time to talk today. I know he is a busy man and did not expect him to say yes, but I sent the text anyway. At first he said he didn't have any open time to fit me into, but once I expressed the importance of what I needed to say he told me to meet him right before church and he'd probably have about twenty minutes in between his morning meetings and the start of church. I thanked him and planned to meet him at the scheduled time.

My alarm didn't go off at the time I planned and as quickly as I tried to get ready I ended up leaving my house at the exact time I told the bishop I would be at the church. I got there as quickly as I could, but feared he wouldn't be able to talk to me due to my tardiness. However, as I walked in he led me into his office and we started to talk. I'm not sure at what point he realized how truly important this conversation was to me, but somewhere along the line he made the decision that time didn't matter. We ended up talking for about an hour. We both missed our first meeting, and I know that is something that he doesn't like to do. The discussion we had was one that was very important to me and much needed. I had things I needed to say and I am so grateful that he took the time to sit and listen to me.

In speaking on the role of a bishop, Bishop H. David Burton once said, "He is there to help you, guide you, listen to you, keep your confidences, and to strengthen you in your relationship with Lord."

Today I am extremely thankful for a loving and inspired Bishop who helps, guides, and listens to me. He has truly been a strength to me and helped me grow in the gospel. He has taught me many principles that have had a huge impact on my life. I will forever hold a special place in my heart for him and the lessons he has taught me.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Selfless Service

I know I already did a post about how thankful I am for my friends, this post is kind of about friends but for a different reason. Today I am grateful for friends who serve.

I'm grateful for the friends you can call at midnight to come and pick you up from the hospital and they come without question. I'm grateful for the friends who not only take time out of their Saturday to go pick up your car and bring it home safely, but also make a list of things you need at the store and pick them up for you while they're there. I'm grateful for the friends who live hundreds of miles away and yet when they find out I'm hurting they call and put my name in their local temple. I'm grateful for the friends who crawl out of bed at 2:00 in the morning to answer a phone call because I've had a bad night, then stay up for an hour and talk me through it. I'm grateful for the friends who take me to appointments, grocery shopping, church, and everywhere else I need to go when I can't drive.

I am grateful for friends who selflessly give of themselves to help someone else in need.

I hope and pray that I can be that kind of friend to anyone who needs me, to anyone who is struggling or simply in need of a friend. If I accomplish nothing else in my life as long as I am that kind of a friend I will feel good about myself. Thank you to those of you who have already achieved this and are my daily examples. May you all be blessed for your love and kindness!

Friday, November 12, 2010


It sounds strange to think that I am thankful for tears, but I am. I think that tears serve a purpose. I don't like the situations that cause tears; unless it's an awesome spiritual moment or a tender chick flick. However, tears can be a very healing thing. Sometimes just having a good cry can make everything feel better. Some people scream or punch a pillow to vent out emotions, but I cry.

I have a friend named McKenzie, and one day at church she was having a very rough day. As she cried on my shoulder she looked up at me and asked, "Where do tears come from?" This question really made me think. Where do tears come from? My first thought was that they come from sadness built up inside us that spills out through our eyes. However, as I thought about it more I realized that isn't always true. Sometimes those tears come from happiness that is so overwhelming we can't contain it. In my opinion tears come from the heart, from the way we relate to a situation and the depth and which we feel something.

Crying is very cathartic. When I cry it helps me get over the hurt I am feeling inside. It helps me to forget about seriousness of the problem I am facing. Crying also helps me to relax. When I've had a stressful day that leads to tears the stress seems to ooze out through my tears. My entire body relaxes after crying and I'm usually ready for a good nap.

Now, don't get me wrong I would much prefer laughter to crying, but some days are just tearful days. I believe there are times in life when we all just need to curl up on the couch and have a good cry.

Thursday, November 11, 2010


I love scrapbooking and journaling. I have a few reasons that I do those things. One is that when I am having a bad day I tend to forget about the blessings I have around me and focus only on how hard things feel. When I hit this wall of negativity one of the things that gets me out is to turn to those books and take time out to ponder and reflect.

In going through my journals I can recall similar times where I've struggled and felt stuck in despair, yet I pulled through and rose above it all. This reminds me that no matter what I am going through I have the strength to get through it, because I've done it before. I do my journaling on my computer and add in photos and things that bring a smile to my face as I go through and read of happy times I've had or silly things I've done.

My scrapbook is a simple way for me to rebound out of the negativity. It only takes me a few minutes to fan through the pages and see the people, places, and things that brighten up my life. On particularly bad days I will go slowly and take time to stare at the pictures and mentally go back to the moments they were taken. I relieve those moments in my mind and can feel the darkness ooze out of me and those wonderful memories fill my soul.

I believe that journals and scrapbooks are important for our posterity, but I also believe they are important for us here and now. I love the following clip of a talk by Pres. Henry B. Eyring I hope you will too.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

People Do Amazing Things

Today has been an interesting day. I'm not gonna lie, the morning kinda sucked a lot. Luckily things changed a bit as the day went on. I've had a bit of a worry on my mind the last little while...maybe more than a bit and probably more than one, but you get the idea...I needed to pay my rent. I have the money in the bank that's not a problem. the problem lies in the fact that I feel like crud and don't have the strength to get over there to actually give them the check. Fearing I would soon be kicked to the curb if I didn't get that check to my landlords soon I called a friend and asked her if she wouldn't mind running it over for me. She agreed and came on over.

When I first reached out and asked her for some assistance I imagined she would be busy and would simply come over pick up the check, go drop it off and then go back to her regularly scheduled day. Instead, she came in and actually made herself right at home like I always tell her to, it made me smile! Then we got talking. As we talked about different struggles that were going on in her life the thought occurred to me that God works in mysterious ways. I called her up today because I needed help, yet as I sat there listening to her vent I realized that out of the two of she needed help more than I did. She needed a friend, a listening ear. She needed a safe place to vent and let out her emotion. My problems could have waited for another day, but she needed a friend now. I believe God knew this and that is why things occurred the way they did today. In the end we were able to help each other. She will probably hate me for writing all of this about her, but it was something that taught me a lesson today and I am very grateful for that. I love my friend and the amazing things she does.

When the time came that my friend went to pay my rent she came back with a smile on her face and a $50 bill in her hand. She said that my landlords had asked how I was feeling and she'd given them a quick update on my health situations. Then one of them told her to hang on and walked away for a minute, he returned with the cash in hand and said they hoped I got feeling better soon and wanted to give me $50 back on my rent this month. I was in shock as she handed me the money. I mean most people send get well cards when someone is sick not give them $50! I wanted to rush in and give them both hugs, but was too ill to do so. I've been trying to think of what to say to them in a thank you card, but words just don't seem to be enough. My funds are tight right now and it's the worst time of the year to have tight funds. I have a million things wrong with my car that require money to fix and have been stressing for a while how I'm going to gather up any spare cash to pay for everything plus do Christmas. True, $50 isn't going to solve everything, but it is a generous gift, one I had not expected, and one that will truly help in these moments of stress. I love my landlords. They are the sweetest most amazing people ever. I couldn't have asked for better living situation. I have the perfect little home, an amazingly cheap rent rate, and the most kind and caring landlords anyone could ask for. How did I get so blessed, and why?

During the time my friend and I were talking I sent a silly text teasing my Bishop about how he is always telling me he'll make me a malt...side note here, homemade malts by my Bishop are seriously my favorite treat on earth...when things in his life slow down a little. Now, for those of you who know the life of a bishop, especially a singles ward bishop, you may know that life doesn't ever really slow down for them. Particularly not when you have a fairly demanding job, a wife, and three young children to take care of. I'm smart enough to know that when he refers to life slowing down it is about as possible and pigs learning to fly. I won't repeat what I said in my silly little text, but suffice it to say that my friend and I found it to be fairly funny. In sending it I expected to receive some sort of joking text in return. Hours went by without a response from him, I was starting to wonder if he had missed the humor in it or if he was just being a typical bishop and didn't have time to respond. I kind of let it slip from my mind and went about doing my normal nightly activities...which means I sat on the couch vegging out on my newly purchased groceries while watching Glee...when there was a knock on the door. I opened the door to find Bishop standing there with a freshly made chocolate malt! I couldn't hold back the laughter as he handed it to me and told me to enjoy it. Even though I think we both know that I was teasing in my text I love that he actually went home and made me a malt. It completely made my day and was the perfect treat as I finished watching Glee. (mmm...it was SOO yummy!!) I love my Bishop and the awesome friendship that we have. I am so grateful for the little things he does to brighten my day and let me know how much he cares.

People do amazing things. Everyone of the people I have mentioned in the paragraphs above did something amazing that touched my life today. I believe that if we take a step back and look at our lives we will find that we all have people who do amazing things for us every single day. Sometimes if we look close enough we may find that we are even that person for ourselves. So go out and do something amazing today. Go make a difference in the life of someone you love. Remember that by small and simple things are GREAT things brought to pass!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


I have been struggling all day to come up with something I am thankful for. I am in the "get worse before you get better" stage of my illness. It has not been a fun day to say the least. I feel miserable inside and out. I am going insane living in a totally dirty house, yet I have absolutely no energy to clean it. I try to avoid the kitchen at all costs because seeing all the dishes piling up in the sink makes me want to vomit. I hate having dirty dishes in the sink like that. I am also avoiding the kitchen because I haven't felt well enough to make it to the grocery store for a few weeks. I don't have many choices on things I can fix to eat and the things I do have to fix will only create more dirty dishes so I don't want to make them. It's a terrible cycle! I keep thinking that things will be better tomorrow and I'll be able to push through and get everything done, but that certain tomorrow is still yet to come and all these problems are just getting heavier and heavier with each passing day.

With all of this going on I'm just not in the mood to be thankful. I'm not thankful for the dirty dishes. I'm not thankful for the lack of food in my kitchen. I'm not thankful for the pain in my stomach. I'm not thankful for how sick I am right now. I'm not thankful for the dark clouds outside that are adding to my in a gloomy mood. So what is there to be thankful for today??

Adversity. Yep, even though on the surface I am not grateful for any of those things I am grateful for the lessons they are teaching me. I am thankful that when the day comes I do feel better I am going to appreciate it so much more. I'm going to be happy the day I feel well enough to do my own dishes. I'm going to be happy the day I can get in my car and drive to the grocery store, do my shopping, and make it home without wanting to die from the pain. I will be elated the day all these pains go away and I can do the things I want to do without having to take pain pills just to function. If I weren't sick today I would take advantage of the days that I'm healthy. I wouldn't get on my knees and thank Heavenly Father for the wonderful time I had grocery shopping or doing my dishes, because it would simply be a part of life and not something I had worked hard for.

I believe that God gives us adversity in order to help us appreciate the little things in life. It helps us to draw closer to Him and realize how important every little detail is. I don't like being sick. I don't like the suffering I have to endure on a daily basis, suffering that only God and I know about. However, I do appreciate the way it opens my eyes to things that most people don't see. I am grateful for that blessing.

Monday, November 8, 2010


Today I am simply grateful for life. Many of us take advantage of the wonderful blessing of life that we receive each day as we crawl out of bed and take in a deep breath. Life is fragile, it could all be gone at any moment. Are we living each moment to the fullest? Are we thankful for every single moment we have, good or bad? I love the quote that says, "Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass it's about learning to dance in the rain." We all have rainy days. I feel like I've been living in monsoon season for the past 2 1/2 months! I believe the trick is to not let those rainy days pull us down too far. Yes, it's ok to go have a good cry, vent, scream, let it all out and then go find the biggest puddle you can and jump in it! Enjoy the thrill of the splash! Today I am grateful for life and all that it brings; the happy, the sad, and every moment in between.

Sunday, November 7, 2010


Friends are family you can choose. My friends truly are my second family.

I have always been one to struggle when it came to friendships. I've never been Ms. Popularity by any means. In high school I used to cry myself to sleep wishing I had friends and wondering what was wrong with me because I didn't. However, over the years I have learned a few things about friendships.

1. The number of friends you have is not nearly as important as the quality of friends you have. I still am not one who has loads of friends, sure according to Facebook I have hundreds of friends, but not the kind that really matter. The friends I do have are amazing, and I wouldn't trade them for anything.I would rather have one really good friend than have hundreds of friends who don't really care.

2.True friends are those you are comfortable being yourself around. We all have a face we put on at times. We smile when we want to cry, we tell people we're fine when we're really not, etc. I have always been one to be sort of a chameleon. I didn't have enough self-esteem to just be me so I would be what I thought those around me wanted me to be. Who I was depended entirely on who I was around. However, this is not the way to find good friends. When you love yourself, are true to yourself, and don't change for anyone but yourself; that is when you find those true friends who love you for who you really are. These are the friendships that will last.

3.We are all unique for a reason. Each person on this Earth has their own set of strengths and weaknesses. I strongly believe this is so we can help each other. I really don't want to be friends with someone exactly like me. I need friends who are stronger in areas I'm in weaker so they can build me up when I'm struggling. I need friends who are weaker where I'm stronger so I can serve and uplift them. This is what truly bonds two people together. There is more to a friendship than just going to parties and playing games. It is when we truly care for one another that the friendship is sincere.

I have amazing friends. They truly are there for me when I need them the most. They help me to laugh, cry, and get through the up's and down's of life. I hope I can be there for them the way they are always there for me.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My Family

I spent the night at my mom's house last night. Waking up this morning my mom and I gathered on my sisters bed and just talked. Pretty soon we were all laughing and giggling as we teased each other. Then we started arm wrestling and goofing around that way. It was one of those priceless moments that you don't plan, but that bless and enrich our lives. It's moments like this that make me smile on the inside.

My family is such a strength to me. We have been through some pretty rough times together and I believe it has made us stronger. We are closer now than we have ever been. My mom is one of my very best friends. She does so much for me that I could never repay her for no matter how hard I tried. My sister is also one of my very best friends. There has been a special bond between us since the day she was born. She can always brighten my day and make everything better. My brother is super awesome, even though he is eight years younger than me I look up to him in a lot of ways...and not just cause he's 3-feet taller than me! He is a good kid with a zest for life that is inspiring. He knows how to have fun and not let the tough times of life get you too far down.

I love my family with all my heart. They are my support and strength during the rough patches of life. I don't know what I'd ever do without them!

Friday, November 5, 2010

5 Gratitude Days

Since today is November 5th and thus day 5 of my gratitude blogs I am going to list 5 things I am grateful for today.

1. Music. Music plays such a huge role in my life. I listen to music to get me motivated and moving in the mornings. I listen to music while I drive to make the drive more enjoyable...sometimes I sing very loudly along with this music...I listen to music when I'm happy, sad, and angry. I listen to music to calm me down and help me sleep at night. Music is literally my life. I can't imagine a world without it.

2. I'm thankful for a freaking amazing doctor! I went in to the doctor's office today and got my monthly injection. As I was walking out of the room my Dr. and I passed in the hallway. I didn't have an appointment today, but upon seeing me she stopped and asked me how I was doing. We stood in the hallway and talked for a few minutes about my treatment plan and how I have been doing. Most Dr.'s in this situation would hardly have acknowledged me let alone stop in the hall and talk with me for ten minutes. During this conversation she became aware of all that was going on with my medication and my insurance not covering it. She talked with her nursing staff about it and then searched her closet for samples. When she didn't have any she told me to follow her, and we went over to two other doctor offices in the GI clinic area and took samples from their closets until I had enough samples to last the two weeks I need to take the medicine! I was so happy. I can start the medication tonight, I no longer need to debate between paying $500 for the medicine or waiting another 2 weeks to see if my insurance might approve it. YAY! I love my doctor!

3. I'm super grateful for my awesome mom who let's me come over and use her washer and dryer. I haven't done laundry in a month and it was getting a bit ridiculous. Yay, for free laundry! I love my mom!

4. I'm grateful for my awesome brother that fixed my headlight for me tonight so I can now drive my car at night without having to worry about getting pulled over. Wahoo!

5. I got to spend some time tonight with one of the cutest little girls on the planet. I am so thankful for Savannah. I love that girl SO much. It was so great for me to be able to spend a little time playing with her and seeing the love she has for me. Even when life seems too hard to handle she can bring the best of smiles to my face and make it feel like I don't have a care in the world!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I've been in a lot of pain today and feeling really weak and lethargic. I tried to get ready for the ward activity tonight, but was just too sick to go. So, I got back into my comfy pj's and crawled back under my comfy blankets, snuggled up with my comfy pillow and put in a movie.

Sometimes you just have days where you want to be comfortable. Being comfortable physically helps me to feel comfortable emotionally. When I'm snuggled up on the couch watching a good movie or reading a good book the world around me doesn't seem to matter that much. I can escape my reality and join the reality of the movie or book. When I'm comfortable life just seems right. You don't have to worry or stress about anything. It's a time to just enjoy the moment, relax, and become one with the couch.

Another thing that makes me comfortable is a nice cup of hot cocoa or warm apple cider. When I combine the warm comforts of my pj's and blanket with a cup of cider I can literally feel myself slip away into a moment of pure bliss...sometimes that leads to me slipping into a nap as well...

I am so very grateful for the little comforts I have in my life. Little things that I tend to take for granted sometimes. I think about all those in the world who are suffering in the cold and sleeping in the streets and my heart breaks because they don't have these simple comforts that bring so much happiness to my life. I have been so blessed and am humbled by the million little comforts that I get to enjoy each day.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


This morning I was in the bathroom brushing my teeth when a shadow passed by the window. I wondered what it was, but then figured it was probably the neighbors cat. I didn't think much of it until another one went by. I quickly finished with my teeth and walked into theother room to peek out out the window. I was floored to see a chicken in the window well! Just then I heard something on the roof, and realized it was the other one I had seen. I grabbed my camera and headed outside. Sure enough there was a chicken on the roof. Upon seeing me it quickly jumped down next to the one in the window well.

I tried to be sneaky and quiet as I took some pictures, but once they realized I was there they took of running around the yard, clucking very loudly. I think they were camera shy!! I was sad that I'd scared them, but was laughing so hard that I couldn't do much about it. Finally I came back inside to leave the poor little things alone.

I sent the pictures to my mom and told her I'd made some new friends, she responded by telling me she always knew I lived in a zoo! It is just one more piece of evidence that anything goes here in North Ogden. I have seen everything from peacocks crossing the street to unattended horses walking down the main 4-lane streets (and not for a parade!). I love living here!

So, today I am thankful for the chickens that bombarded my house and provided me with some happifiying entertainment this morning!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Blessings Galore

When I was first thinking about what I was thankful for today I was going to say the beautiful fall leaves. Right now the colors are so beautiful. I haven't been able to get out of the house much since I've been so sick the past two months, and I was afraid I had missed the beauty of fall. I had an appointment at the hospital today and as I drove along the mountain road towards the hospital I was in awe at how wonderful everything looked. The sun was shining, the air was crisp, and the leaves were gorgeous. It made my drive into the hospital much more enjoyable and not so focused on the reason I was headed there.

Then this evening I received a call from my doctors office. The results of my last test were in. I was nervous that she was going to tell me the results were normal and I would need to come in for further testing, so when she told me that the results were positive I was momentarily in shock. My heart skipped a beat or two and I became very excited. The Dr. said the results showed I have a very bad bacterial overgrowth in my stomach and intestines. They are going to put me on some strong antibiotics for two weeks and then I'll need to take a pro-biotic for 30 days after that. I am SO happy that they have found the cause of my pain and sickness. It has been two longs months of misery and now there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I am so thankful for a wonderful doctor who didn't give up. I am grateful to finally have some answers and a way to treat the problem. There is an end in sight, life will get better!

I feel I have been so very blessed today!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Following Counsel

Today I am very grateful for the blessings that come from following counsel we are given by our Priesthood leaders. Last week at our stake conference one of the counselors in the stake presidency counseled us to make the church website our homepage. This is a very simple thing to do, when I came home from conference and changed my home page I really didn't think it would make that big of a difference. Yet, in the past week I have noticed a big difference. Opening up the internet every day and seeing that website helps me to focus on what's really important. It helps me to prioritize my time on the internet differently. I spend some time reading a quote or an article before I move on to checking my email and facebook. In doing this I have felt closer to the Savior and truly feel like I am putting Him first in my life.

I believe there is great power in doing the small and simple things. I also believe there is power in following the counsel of those who have been called to be our leaders; whether it is coming from the prophet or our home teachers. Our priesthood leaders are there for a reason. I am grateful for them and the inspiration they receive from Heavenly Father.


Last month in General Conference President Thomas S. Monson gave a talk entitled The Divine Gift of Gratitude http://tinyurl.com/22v9ala. As November starts and Thanksgiving approaches I decided this is something I really needed to focus on for a while.

I have been going through a lot lately with my illness and it is really easy to sit around complaining and feeling sorry for myself because of all the things I can't do or am missing out on because of how sick I am. Pres. Monson said this, "When we encounter challenges and problems in our lives it is often difficult for us to focus on our blessings. However, if we reach deep enough and look hard enough, we will be able to feel and recognize just how much we have been given."

So, for the next 30 days I am going to plant a seed of faith and follow the counsel of the prophet. I am going to find something to be thankful for every day. It may be something small or something extremely significant. I am going to reach deep and look hard and then I am going to post what I am thankful for and why. My hope is that through this I will be able to rise about the gloom of my illness and realize the blessings that are all around me.