Sunday, February 3, 2013

Scripture Journaling

I love browsing The Redheaded Hostess's posts about scripture journals.  I also like That Good Part, and LDS Notebooking, and One of Kind, well, there is a lot, but those will get you started.

Recording our thoughts while we're studying our scriptures is important.

"I've found, as I'm sure you have, that when you are trying to learn from the spirit, it's important to make a note so it will not be forgotten. The more you not only hear but abide by what you've been told, the more the Lord will give to you. It will come more and more rapidly and you will begin to hear and feel those impressions of the Spirit more quickly than you have previously done." -Elder Gene R. Cook

I'm not nearly as creative or artistic as many of the ladies with these beautiful scripture journals.  I felt like I need to study, then plan out a page and then make the page.  It became a little overwhelming and I'd avoid it entirely because I didn't have the page done, but I felt ready to move on to another topic.

I also felt like I neglected other areas I felt I need to study.  I love our ward, but one thing they really lack is contributing to lessons.  I'll answer question and help out, but I hate feeling like the only one participating.  I also felt like I needed to be prepared for classes.  I get more from the lesson and I feel better contributing. 

I made a study schedule.  I started off just taking about 4 pieces of paper, folding them hot-dog style and stapling the middle to make a little book.  I found a little something that has been working for a few weeks, and made a template for every week. 

I like the schedule, it keeps me from getting restless with one thing, book of scripture or topic.  But it keeps me on-task, on-schedule and progressing.  I do work on "journal"  but I only do so about once or twice a week.  I added a page to organize some thought, make a ponder pad, or jot down some inspiration, things to look up or ideas for teaching my kids. 

Anyway, I'd hate to keep all my work to myself, so I made a pdf and thought I'd share if anyone out there is interested. 
 Here's the link for the TEMPLATE.
And a link with an example week.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Being More Productive, in a Serving Way.

I am always trying to find ways to be more __(fill in the blank)___.  Usually it's words like; productive, happy, spiritual, friendly, focused, etc.   While having one of my self-improvement sessions, I had been thinking about serving by Helping in The Vineyard.   But after looking at the projects I felt like there was something else I was suppose to be doing.  Well, the March Ensign came out.  I read this article, "A Call for Indexers Worldwide."  I knew it was what I suppose to be doing.  

It is usually was maybe an hour a week. I'd try to knock out 2 or 3 batches a week.  I would do this while Maggie was napping and Landen was taking some quiet time. On days when I didn't have things to get caught up on.    Then the 1940 census records were released.  It's been a huge collaboration effort to get them indexed ASAP! Now, I find myself sneaking some time in to do it after the kids go to bed too.  I downloaded a few batches to do while riding along with Michael too.   I don't know I'll continue doing it, but it's fun to think I'm chipping away on the block with everyone else and together we're accomplishing so much!!

Here's what I love:

  It's a time-out from being mom.  I first started listening to music on the Mormon Channel while I was doing them.  Then I started listening to the talks, but now I often download conference or devotionals to listen too.  It's an awesome way to do some service! It gives me some time to listen to an uplifting message too.  

It's service.  Not that I don't like the 'mow-your-neighbors-lawn' type of service, but sometimes it's hard to do.  I do continue to try to serve my neighbors. Indexing is not a substitute, but it really enhances my opportunities and abilities to serve.

Sometimes it's hard!  I like hard things, they help me to grow. And really, if something isn't challenging I give up easily. I get bored and lose interest.  And it's always new.  It motivates me to write better and clearer.  Seriously, Sometimes I can't tell if it's an S or G.  I've also realized that cursive is a lost art. Really? Who writes in cursive anymore?

These are real people! Sometimes, we think of family history as something to do when we're old.  We think it's about going to cemeteries to find family members.  These are people that are long dead and you didn't know.  But guess what? During the 1940 census my grandparents were alive!! I knew some of these people on these papers.  Some of these people are alive.   This past week, I decided to try and search the census records for some of my family.  I found them.  How cool is that? Someone is going to index their records.... what if it's me? 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Pinterest: Change Your Terms or We’re Leaving

Have you taken a few minutes to read up on PINTEREST?
Their terms of Use are a little crazy and totally unfair to both user and copyrights.
There is a good article Pinterest: Change Your Terms or We’re Leaving, with links to more good articles at the bottom.  Take 5 minutes and read.

Maybe it's just because I majored in PR/Journalism, and took some copyright law classes.  Maybe it's because I produce work that I want to be paid for and think others deserve the same courtesy. Or maybe it's because I don't want to inadvertently want to be stealing (yes stealing).

But these articles have left me thinking and reconsidering my account.  I really like Pinterest, but if I'm doing something wrong, and hurting other people, even if I really like it and it's a great tool, I shouldn't be using it.    

At first my reasoning was this:  I pin things I want to do, make, read about or buy.  It helps bloggers, or other content producers drive traffic to their blog and that makes them more money, which is ultimately what they want to do, right? 

Well, I started to realize I read less blogs and spend less time on websites.  I share without their permission, and people (me included) can knock-off a project, article or other thing just by looking at the picture and not even visit the site.  Many pins include the recipe right in the pin. And this does not help the blogger.  It's great if a project reaches 5000 pins and everyone visits her site, but only sees the one project and doesn't ever visit a sponsor, it's defeated her purpose and only given her 5 second fame.  Not cool anymore.

I honestly try to visit every website that I pin. In reality, I open a dozen or more tabs and hardly get to the them all.  Which begs the question, if I can't even look at all the sites, are all the new things to do really helping me? Am I accomplishing anything or wasting time, or just giving myself more to do?   

Oh the anguish!   What are your thoughts?  Are you reconsidering your account?  What has swayed your decision?

P.S.  Protect your kids and family blogs from unwanted exposure!  From Pinterest's Help Page
What if I don't want images from my site to be pinned?
We have a small piece of code you can add to the head of any page on your site:
When a user tries to pin from your site, they will see this message:
"This site doesn't allow pinning to Pinterest. Please contact the owner with any questions. Thanks for visiting!"

You can do this on Blogger by going to the Layout Page and clicking edit HTML. Continue and paste the phrase under where it says Head.  It's about 1-2 paragraphs from the top.  Good Luck!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

We Enlisted

We decided to commit to  Service Bootcamp this February with everyone over at We Talk of Christ, We rejoice in Christ.

This means we will be doing 1 act of service everyday for the entire month. Yep, 29 acts of service.   Today we brainstormed some ideas for our Service:
  • take cookies, treat
  • visit  someone
  • be a friend
  • accomplish a task or chore
  • home teaching/visiting teaching
  • give someone a ride
  • send Valentines 
  • babysit
  • take someone dinner
  • take eggs to someone
  • invite someone over for dinner
  • invite someone over to play
  • send a letter
  • write a thank-you note
  • give someone a Book of Mormon
  • donate to DI/Salvation Army 
  • donate to the Food Bank
  • give a compliment
  • offer prayers in someone's behalf
  • go to the temple
  • take a bag groceries to someone
  • volunteer at the cannery
  • clean the Church

President Thomas S. Monson said,  "I believe the Savior is telling us that unless we lose ourselves in service to others, there is little purpose to our own lives. Those who live only for themselves eventually shrivel up and figuratively lose their lives, while those who lose themselves in service to others grow and flourish—and in effect save their lives."  October 2009 General Conference

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Climbing Mount Everest.

I read this article today.

She struck the nail on the head.   Really, when I sit back and think about it, I love being a  mom.  Best. Job. Ever.

Ask me that during the day when my kids are driving me nuts, it's not quite so much fun or so much love. Why? Because it's hard dealing with a 3 year old, especially one who has decided no to use words, but instead just makes sound effects for communication.  Or 15 month old, who just screams when she doesn't get her way.  It's hard when I know I should not give in, but I know that if I do the crying will stop.  It's hard to not laugh at the pout that comes when they are told no. 

She says, "Parenting is hard. Just like lots of important jobs are hard. Why is it that the second a mother admits that it's hard, people feel the need to suggest that maybe she's not doing it right? Or that she certainly shouldn't add more to her load. Maybe the fact that it's so hard means she IS doing it her own way...and she happens to be honest."
Parenting should be hard!  It's our greatest responsibility! It gives us the best rewards!! She uses the analogy of climbing Mt. Everest.  The climb is hard- you won't enjoy every minute of it. You won't enjoy most it, even!  But when you get to the top, see the view, and relish your triumph, you treasure that moment forever. 

Do I hate it when people tell me to enjoy every minute of it?  No, but I'm probably thinking, "you try enjoying that nasty diaper I changed 5 minutes ago..."  But I really relate. I relate to feeling guilty that I don't enjoy every second. I relate to it being hard.   But I love her point.  If we can make it through the crying and hard stuff. There are plenty of sweet moments-- Maggie's precious smile, Landen giving me a kiss and telling me he loves me, and when they play nice together.   Those are the parts to be enjoyed and treasured.

She says,  "Then there's Kairos time. Kairos is God's time. It's time outside of time. It's metaphysical time. It's those magical moments in which time stands still. I have a few of those moments each day. And I cherish them.... If I had a couple Kairos moments during the day, I call it a success. Carpe a couple of Kairoses a day."

Monday, January 16, 2012

I'm excited for a New Year!

I'm not always excited for a new year.  Actually, I spent the first 16 days of it dragging my feet about it.  I think it's because it's the end of the year too.  I feel a little disappointed in the last year.  I wanted so much and wanted me to improve so much, that I'm a little bummed I didn't get as far as I wanted. 

And then there's that aging thing... like another year and I'm older and my kids are getting older.

Anyway, I  was catching up on some blog reading last night and cam across Jocelyn's Post : Setting Goals Backwards and I started realizing, we've made some major improvements and hit some milestones this year.

  •  Michael quit his job for another one and that didn't work out.  We spent 5 months unemployed.  It was tough.  It was trial on us - emotionally and financially.  I think we're better for it and we value our savings and food storage more than ever. 
  • I lost all my baby weight.  Yep.  That was a good accomplishment.  We're eating better and more fresh fruits and veggies.  And I'm working out more consistently.   
  • My kids grew.   Maggie's walking and talking.  Landen succeeded in potty training.  He's using bigger words and longer sentences.  He's starting to pre-read.
  • We moved into a great new house and neighborhood.  We've made lots of friends this year in many different places. 
  • We visited our family and strengthened those relationships. 
  • We planted a garden.... but didn't get much of it canned or frozen.  
  • We celebrated 5 years of marriage.  It hasn't been all that bad either! 
  • We rescued a dog.  We love her, the kids love her, but she's a lot of work and training.  Michael is learning patience.  

That's pretty good!  There are lots of good things to look forward to this year.  We've been working on setting some personal goals and some for the family.   It does us good to be cheerful and looking forward to the new year.  What are you excited for this year?

Monday, October 24, 2011

I'm on a mission

I'm on a mission of change.

Lately, I've felt a little off my game.

Completely disorganized.  A little lazy and easily distracted.

Do you have those moments when you know you should be doing something, but you're not exactly sure what it is you should do?  Me.All.The.Time. 

So I'm on mission to get back on the wagon and get more organized and my house a little cleaner, my kids scheduled a little better and life a little less.... 'loose.'

So, My first project is a house organization binder.

1. First, I wanted to gather together everything I need to run my house in one place.  It seems a little scattered.  I got my menu planner on the fridge, my cleaning chart in my head, my calendar drifts here and there and I started putting my gift-giving lists in my finance binder.  So, all in one place and easy to find.

2.  I wanted to get parts of it out on paper.  Like our cleaning list. And our routines.  I mean, what if I fell off the face of the earth? At least, my husband would know where to begin... or grandparents.  I figured it could be useful to baby-sitters too.   I'm a visual person too.  So, being able to see those routines and planners would help me to get more done.

As I began searching around for some ideas,  I found these great sites!