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Look carefully...at the seemingly small moments...in the constant shaping of souls.- Neal A.Maxwell

Better than TV, a pool, pancakes & sausage

A few years ago my husband had a business trip in Lincoln City, Oregon.  Because the trip occured during the boys' Spring Break, the family tagged along.  We all had a great time, especially then-9-year-old.  This year now-11-year-old asked if we could go to Lincoln City again during Spring Break.  Husband and I thought it was a good idea.  15-year-old was hesitant, he did not want to miss any days of track practice.  We told him it was his choice whether he joined us or not.  11-year-old was crushed.  We reminded him of the hotel stay with TV and a pool - two things we don't have at home.  We reminded him of Sambo's Restaurant, a big hit last time. "But," said 11-year-old, "the coast won't be the same without any brothers!" 

15-year-old decided he could skip the two days of track practice if he ran on the beach to compensate.  We all had a great time, especially 11-year-old.

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On the drive to Lincoln City 11-year-old asked if we had resevations at the same hotel we had stayed at before.  My husband replied, "I have us somewhere to stay."  If you have seen Jeanne Robertson - Sleeping in Tubes, you'll understand why his remark was so funny.  If you haven't, it's worth watching: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7K0k6W2jKXc




I love words.  I love the meaning they can convey.  I love the pictures they can paint.  I love the music they can make when  blended just right. 

I was talking with a 14-year old who is reading The Tale of Despereaux, she saw the movie but prefers the book.  I just finished reading Eggs by Jerry Spinelli.  A decent movie could be made with the story line but I already know I would prefer the book: 

"And so he did not take their squabbling seriously.  He laughed, as there was no depth to their attacks.  They were throwing stones - yes - but they were skipping them across the surface of each other's water.  Flat and sharp-edged, the stones stung for only a moment, then sailed off.  But as summer droned on he began to notice that some of the stones became heavier, became rocks, were dropped rather than skipped, were allowed to sink.  One day in late July, a rock hit bottom."


"He still heard his mother's voice - "Davey" - rise like whisper-dust from unseen corners in the house, but it was no longer the only voice he heard.  His ears were also filled with the voices of others - his father and Primrose and Refrigerator John and his grandmother.  Of course, all of their words for a thousand years could not fill the hole left by his mother, but they could raise a loving fence around it so he didn't keep falling in."


The Stick

The better deal:

Friday evening 11-year old and my husband were on a father/son campout with 11-year old's scout group.  15-year old and I had pizza and watched "Karate Kid" on DVD.  

Tonight 11-year old is sick.  Husband went to bed, I stayed up with 11-year old.

Friday evening I was thinking that I definitely got the good end of the stick.  Tonight I'm still thinking I got the good end.  11-year old and I cuddled on the couch and reminisced.  I told funny stories about when the boys were younger.  He got his Memory book out and we looked at pictures and special papers.  At about 11pm, when he felt up to going to bed (an odd factor of being sick,) 11-year old gave me a big hug and thanked me for staying up with him. 


Not for the weak of stomache, REALLY:

A couple of days ago I went into the elementary school front office to check in as a volunteer.  A little girl was sitting on a bench with a wastepaper basket between her knees.  There was a big wet spot on the carpet next to her.  The school secretary came out of the back room wearing a knee length coat buttoned to the chin.  She had a damp washcloth and proceeded to gently wipe the girl's face.  When the secretary was done cleaning the girl up she asked the girl to come back to the nurse's office.  As the girl headed back the principal stuck her head out of her office and said to the girl, "Sweetie, grab the garbage can and bring it with you just in case."

This evening I related the story to 15 and 11-year old.  The two boys and I were laughing while I described the incident.  My husband did not understand what was so funny.  (The can, the wet spot, the coat, the principal? - not so humorous to husband).  11-year old responded, "Do you remember when I was sick..."

Three years ago, one by one each member of our family was hit with a bad stomache bug.  My turn was over, then-8-year old was next in line.  We were sitting on the couch together when he suddenly jumped up and ran to the bathroom.  I heard a splat, a slide and a thunk.  8-year old had gotten sick on the floor, slipped in the mess and slid into the bathroom cabinents.

11-year old concluded the story with, "I was lying on the floor and mom was laughing her head off."

True, I was laughing pretty hard.  While cleaning him up I apologized for laughing.  8-year old said, "It's okay, I'm used to it." 

At tonight's re-telling 11-year old, 15-year old and I all found the whole thing quite humorous.


Because no one is perfect:

I have a friend facing a difficult, possibly fatal, pregnancy she wrote: 

" Would it be hard for my seven children to grow up without a mother?  Of course it would be, it would be horrible.  It would be hard, but it would also be strengthening and character building.  It is hard for them to grow up with me as a mother too, sometimes."

Words most, if not all, parents can relate to.


Friday 15-year old was asked to give a talk in church today.  He was assigned the topic, "Cast thy bread upon the waters."  I want to echo his closing remarks:

"Listen one final time,'Cast thy bread upon the waters.'  Right there you do not know what will happen to your bread, your work, your time – it is left completely to the Lord.  Sometimes in life we will sit along the shore of faith holding our bread, giving thanks for it, instead of casting it upon the water.  That fear of casting our bread can cause us to miss important opportunities.  We will be stuck saying, “What if...?”

 " Brothers and Sisters, I have a testimony of this amazing gospel and I pray that every day I may be granted my daily bread so that I can cast it upon the waters and never need to wonder, “What if...?”


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