Thursday, October 30, 2014

Family Room: Before Pictures

Here are the "Before" pictures of our family room.  It is nice, but it felt very brown.  I wanted to lighten and brighten the room without buying new furniture.  Tomorrow I will show you the after pictures!  

* Just for fun:  Have you ever wanted your house to look like the photos that you see in Magazines?  I love this post by Emily A. Clark.  She shows the behind the scenes photos of taking pretty pictures for magazines. . . maybe everything isn't as perfect as the pictures :)  Emily has a beautiful house, I love that she shared her experience!  

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Keeping Life Organized and Staying on top of Paperwork

from Tasha Bradshaw on Vimeo.

If you have ever felt completely overwhelmed and buried in paperwork this video shows what I do to stay on top of papers at our house.  

P.S. I learned so much from the "Mind Organization for Moms" program from Power of Moms, the video has several references to what they teach in that program.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Cause for Concern: Pornography

Last week at the grocery store I was busy putting my cart load of groceries on the moving conveyer belt for the checker who was checking me out.  As I lifted the eggs and bread my beautiful four year old daughter said," Mom look, she is not modest."  She pointed at a very inappropriate magazine cover in the check out line.   It was the kind of picture that you see and then feel sick that we live in such a crazy world that people view it as normal.  I turned her head and quietly talked to her and explained that I agree, she is not modest and suggested we look the other way so that we don't have to see that picture.

How sad, why do our children have to be so exposed to such pictures at a young age?

This morning while getting ready I listened to a podcast on Power of Moms, entitled "Pornography: A Totally Doable Plan for Protecting Our Kids."  It was an excellent discussion about how as mothers we can protect our children by teaching them when they are young the difference between good pictures and bad pictures.  The discussion was with Kristen Jenson, author of Good Pictures Bad Pictures.  I have not read the book, but it sounds like a great resource to help our children.  This is a serious problem in our world today that is affecting so many people, ruining young minds, and damaging families.

Our church has a mormon message regarding the pain and heartbreak that can be caused by pornography.

So what can we do as mother's to protect our children?  We can teach and talk to them.  I knew what I needed to do.  This morning I called the manager of our local grocery store, I explained my concern of the magazine covers with women with very little clothing on and the manager was so helpful.  He explained that they have plastic covers that they can put in front of the magazine to cover the photo.  He said that he would get right on it to make sure that inappropriate pictures are not right at eye level (and are covered with the plastic cover) for my innocent four year old to see next time I am in the check out line.  I am grateful that he was so willing to understand and willing to help me protect my children.  

Following this experience we took time to talk with all of our children about pornography and how to avoid it and what to do when we happen upon something that is a "bad picture."  It our technological world it is a subject that needs to be clearly addressed at home.  

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Meet The Mormons

Yesterday we were able to take our family to the new movie.  It was wonderful!  Regardless of your religious beliefs it was incredible to see the power of choice and faith in the lives of individuals who are striving to follow Jesus Christ.  It made me think, "Am I living up to my divine potential?"

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Happy With Life

Today I just want to write about what I feel.  I am happy.  Not just the kind of happy when you get a cute new shirt or when the dishes are done.  I sincerely feel so grateful for life, for my husband, my family, and extended family.  I am so grateful for inner peace and comfort knowing that I am spending my life doing what really matters.  I love being a mom, I love being home.  

This past weekend we were able to listen for two days to our church leaders teach us at our annual General Conference.  I love to listen and learn from amazing men and women that pattern their lives after Christ.  I try to soak every word they say into my mind and heart.  

As a family, one way that we prepare for General Conference is we each come up with a question that we need answers to in our own personal life.  As we are listening to General Conference we listen for ways that our question is answered.  It is amazing, but our questions are always answered!  I had a few questions that I needed answers to, but one of my questions was, "What can I do now to establish traditions and habits that will bless my family now and in the future?"  

One of the talks that most directly answered my question was a talk by Tad L. Callister.  It is less than 10 minutes long, and worth listening to.  As a mother it was so inspiring that the simple things we do with our children can have a long term lasting effect on their lives and many others that they come in contact with.  

I love being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I love at Conference time that we all come together and focus on learning and growing in the gospel.  I love the church so much, and I love to share it with my friends of any faith.  I love this talk by Elder David A. Bednar and he explains why we want to share what we are learning at church with our friends around us, we share it because our knowledge of the Gospel brings us so much joy!  

I am looking forward to this weekend because we are planning to go see the new movie called, "Meet the Mormons."   From what I have heard, it is an inspiring movie.  

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Favorite interior designers.

When I am looking for inspiration I have a few favorite designers that I turn to for inspiration:

Jennifer Stagg

Sita Montegomery

Kirsten Krason
House of Jade Interiors

Caitlin Creer

Caitlin Wilson

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Reverence at Church

Many people ask how we get our kids to be reverent in church.  My husband is (was until last week) a high counselor and sometimes he doesn't attend our ward that leaves me with seven kids at church by myself.  Sometimes the baby needs to be fed or taken out durning church so that leaves six kids to sit by themselves.  

So here some of the tips and ideas that we have found help the kids to be more reverent during sacrament meeting. 
(By the way, I asked the kids this question and they helped me make this list)

 reverence at church starts at home.

Number one hold regular family scripture study. We have the kids sit on the couch with their scriptures and take turns reading and participating in family scripture study. By learning to sit during the week they do a lot better on Sunday.  Have you heard the primary song that says, "Reverence is more than just quietly sitting. . ."  Having family scripture study durning the week also teaches them to understand spiritual things.  It has helped our kids to learn from and enjoy sacrament meeting, not just view it as a time to quietly endure!  

Number two we've learned that less is more when it comes to taking things to church.  The more we take the more of a circus, zoo, and wild experience it becomes. 

We don't have our kids take a lot of toys to church, if they are three or four they can have a pencil and paper to draw with or maybe some pictures of Christ or something little that they can hold.   If they are older than that we really encourage them just to have their scriptures. We want our kids to understand that Sacrament meeting isn't a time for art projects or leisurely reading.  We want them listening to the speaker, so we really encourage less stuff.  

Number three sometimes we have a seating arrangement.   We've learned that it's better if you can have kids arranged in an order where they can be reverent.   The babies and the ones that need the most help get to sit by the parents and then the other ones are in a certain order so that the ones that fight the most are not sitting by each other!   We have found that a boy girl seating chart usually works pretty well for our family.

Number Four  I would like to add to the list that parents set the example.  I can't even begin to emphasis enough that our attitude and focus in church has a tremendous effect on our children. With a 9 month old baby she sometimes gets a bit squirmy and I need to stand up in the back with her or take her out.  I'm amazed as I walk out of the chapel and turn around and look back or as I'm walking in from having her in the hall, the amount of people on their iPhones and iPads. Many grown adults sit in Sacrament meeting playing games on their iPhones. I see children that are completely engrossed in a game on their iPad.  It is sad to me that the sacrament meeting which should be focused on our Savior Jesus Christ and his atonement. Is more focused on the trivial meaningless mindnumbing games or entertainment.  Based on those thoughts you can see that we don't allow her children to use technology in Sacrament meeting. I also have sacrament meeting  a time when I put my phone and iPad away.  If the spirit prompts me and I need to write something down I need to remember later I simply write a note on the church program and later added it to my calendar or to do list so I can follow through on that prompting

Number Five How we dress and how prepared for church we are make a big difference in our reverence.  "How we dress is an important indicator of our attitude and preparation for any activity in which we will engage. If we are going swimming or hiking or playing on the beach, our clothing, including our footwear, will indicate this. The same should be true of how we dress when we are to participate in the ordinance of the sacrament. It is like going to the temple. Our manner of dress indicates the degree to which we understand and honor the ordinance in which we will participate." (Elder Oaks)

Excellent article on reverance

Elder oaks
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