Sunday, December 27, 2015

Baby, It's Cold Outside!

Two Things I am Grateful For:

1) Holidays spent with family and friends. We had a very "low key" Christmas this year, but we still managed to make some memories and have some fun.

2) I am grateful that my neighbor made it home tonight.  He must have gone out of town to spend time with his family out of town or something, but he left his son home alone and the amount of traffic in and out of that house this weekend has been ridiculous!  I'm thankful for the quiet.  Now our dog has calmed down too.  (Can you believe that father left his son home alone on Christmas????)

From the Camera:

So, this happened today.  My oldest got engaged to her sweetheart.  He popped the question in Sedona today.  Danielle said they went on what was suppose to be a 2 mile hike that turned out being a 10 mile hike because Chance got them lost.  True story.  As Danielle said, "at least we will have a funny story to tell our kids someday."  I'm excited for both of them and I can't wait to start planning their big day with both of them.  

From the Craft Room and Other Cool Things:

Isn't this pretty?  I'm in a jewelry making mood and so when I saw this for sale on one of those Facebook groups it inspired me to get my tools out and start creating.  That is after I visit a place or two first.  I'll show you what I come up with soon.  It won't be exactly this, but maybe something similar.  

From the Heart and Spirit:
What if there were no Joseph Smith
By: John Bytheway
Joseph Smith’s birthday was 210 years ago today.  When you think about it, you are reading this blog, from an LDS author because a fourteen year old boy said a prayer.  Because of that prayer, and because of all that happened in the Sacred Grove that Spring morning, thousands of people walked across a continent, and many of my facebook friends are their descendants.  I suppose we should never underestimate the power of a teenage prayer.
In the movie It’s a Wonderful Life, George Bailey had the opportunity to see what the world would be like  if he had never been born.  The world was a much different place without a George Bailey.
We could ask a similar question.  What if Joseph Smith had never been born?  What if Joseph Smith had not been inspired by James 1:5?  Or what if he had never gone into the sacred grove to pray?   What if that teenage prayer have never been uttered?  What would the world be like if there were no Restoration?   Perhaps we would believe, like some in the Christian world, that God has done his work, and no longer speaks to prophets.  I suppose we might still be wondering if God had forgotten his children on the earth, or if he no longer cared to send prophets among them as he had in the past.
There would be no Book of Mormon, no heroes to read about like Nephi, Alma, Abinadi or Captain Moroni.  No evidence that God remembered his people in every nation.  There would be no Kirtland, No Jackson County, No Farr West, and no Nauvoo.  We wouldn’t have any heroic stories of early church members crossing the plains, and no testimonies of the growth and faith that come from persecution and adversity.
There would be no Restoration of the priesthood, no chance to receive ordinances like baptism, or to take the sacrament from authorized servants.  No opportunity to receive blessings of comfort, or blessings of healing.  With no priesthood,  there would be no priesthood to honor, no extra incentive for men young and old, to keep their lives clean and pure.  There would be no missionaries, no elders and sisters, who go out into the world in their youth to teach and testify.  No tearful goodbyes and no joyful reunions.
There would be no sealing power, no temple marriage, and in fact, no temples.  I suppose we would believe like as many do that husbands and wives and families do not stay together after this life, but that we somehow live singly and separately in heaven (how could it be called heaven without our families?)
There would be no home teaching, no visiting teaching (in some wards that’s the way it is now).  No Youth conferences, no Stake conferences or general conferences.  No children singing I am a Child of God. – No nursery, no primary, no scouts, Beehives, Mia Maids, or Laurels.
There might be a Salt Lake City, but there wouldn’t be cities and towns with names like Bountiful, Lehi,  Nephi, Brigham City, Ephraim, or Heber.  No Ensign Peak, No Ensign magazine, no New Era or Friend.  No Brigham Young University, which would make the Ute fans happy until they realize there wouldn’t be a University of Utah either.  Of course there would be no BYU Salt Lake Center which means I would be out of a job.  So I’m really glad there was a Restoration, and not just because I needed a job.
The Restoration was a burst of light after a night of apostasy.  The Restoration brought miracles once again to the earth.  The Restoration taught us that God is not just an indefinable spirit essence, but a loving Heavenly Father who cares about each one of us.  Joseph Smith saw the Father and the Son.  He gave his witness that Jesus Christ lives!
And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him: That he lives! For we saw him, even on the right hand of God; and we heard the voice bearing record that he is the Only Begotten of the Father (Doctrine and Covenants 76:22-23).
Not everyone believes Joseph Smith’s testimony of Jesus Christ, but we do.  What if we’d lived in another time?   What if we’d lived in ancient times?  Would we have recognized Jesus of Nazareth for who he really was?  It’s hard to say.  Elder Bruce R. McConkie gave his opinion on that point when he taught:
Who will honor the name of Joseph Smith and accept the gospel restored through his instrumentality   We answer: The same people who would have believed the words of the Lord Jesus and the ancient Apostles and prophets had they lived in their day. If you believe the words of Joseph Smith, you would have believed what Jesus and the ancients said. If you reject Joseph Smith and his message, you would have rejected Peter and Paul and their message.  (Bruce R. McConkie, Ensign, November 1981, p. 48.)
I’m thankful that Joseph Smith was born in 1805, and I’m thankful that as a teenage boy, he said a prayer in 1820.  I believe the world is a better place, and I know that my world is better, my decisions have been better, and my life has been better, and my family has been blessed because Joseph Smith was born 210 years ago today.

From the Kitchen:

My Sister-in-law, KeriAnne shared this recipe on Facebook and I will have to give it a try....without the onions, of course.  We are not an onion family at all.

Loaded Baked Potato Crockpot Soup

1 bag (30 oz) frozen hash-brown potatoes
2 cans (14 oz ea) chicken broth
1 can (10.75 oz) cream of chicken soup
1/2 C chopped onion
1/3 tsp ground black pepper
1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
Garnish: minced green onion, Cheddar, shredded, and bacon 

In a crock pot, combine potatoes, broth, soup, onion, and pepper. Cover, and cook on low for 5 hours.
Stir in cream cheese, cook 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until combined.
Garnish with green onion, and/or Cheddar and bacon if desired
From the Schmidt's:

It's 11:30 p.m. and I can't sleep.  What's up with that?  We finally played the new Settler's of Catan game we got as a family gift.  It was a lot of fun.  The game keeps moving back and forth across the United States game board, so things happen and the game keeps changing as you go.  It takes about 2 1/2 hours to play, but it's something we enjoy.  We also played this cups game Danielle got for us too.  That was fun.  We also got Telestrations and we played that Christmas Eve.  We have a lot of fun playing board games together.  It brings us all together and we enjoy that time together.  Danielle got us an old Sega video game that lets you play the old games on the new system.  Kyle got Mario Maker, Kevin got NASCAR.  Lexi got two sets of books in two different series she was wanting.  I got this amazing pearl necklace and a beautiful figurine and some scarfs.  I love scarfs!  We each got a few gift cards and some cash, so Lexi plans to buy some jeans, I purchased something online, Kyle went to Sweetie's candy store in Chandler, Kevin still needs to do something with his.  All-in-all, we had a wonderful Christmas and we had a big turkey dinner with all the trimmings.  I even made homemade rolls and everyone loved them so much I had to make two more batches today when they all ran out.  

In one more week, Kyle starts his job at the police department!  I'm excited for him.  Tomorrow I am back at work, Lexi is back at her school work, and Kevin has more appointments.  We don't have any major plans for New Year's Eve yet.  We aren't sure if the neighborhood will be hosting their annual fireworks display or not.  It's always fun to get together as a neighborhood and celebrate.  We shall see.  Well, it's that time again.  I need to get to bed.  Take care and we will talk again soon.

From the Missionary:

We got to talk to this young man for 2 hours on Christmas Day, which is unheard of for missionaries.  It just worked out that was because his companion had to make two calls because of his family situation.  Apparently Elder Schmidt's companion lost his mother at a young age and she joined the church just before she died.  After she passed away the companion went to live with his Aunt who was also a member.  Well, the Aunt had the missionaries come into her home to teach her young nephew...who is now serving as our sons companion.  Awesome Aunt, wouldn't you say?  Well, while this young man was talking to his Aunt and his Father, Curtis was talking with us.  He even talked to my Mom to thank her for the gift she sent as well.  All-in-all, this was by far our BEST gift!  We feel very blessed to have had that time with our missionary.  We even met the District Leaders too.  They were the ones in that video I posted a few days ago.  They smiled and were startled when I mentioned their dancing.  It was good!  😊🌲❤️🎁✨🌟⭐️🎄❤️🎁😊

Quote of the Day:

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