Saturday, October 5, 2013

conference quotes

Conference today was yet another confirmation to me that my Heavenly Father knows each of us very personally and that he knows our needs.  We had a family home evening (yes, every now and again we have family home evening) about preparing for conference but writing down questions or problems that we needed help with.  My heart was very full as I saw our divinely inspired leaders working through the spirit to help us each so individually.  I am so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who wants us to be happy and tries in so many ways to guide us through this life.  

Here are a few of the quotes that I especially loved from conference:

"Doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith"   -Dieter F. Uchdorf

“The Church is designed to nourish the imperfect, the struggling, and the exhausted.” 
Dieter F. Uchtdorf

“When the real history of mankind is fully disclosed, will it feature the echoes of gunfire or the shaping sound of lullabies? The great armistices made by military men or the peacemaking of women in homes and in neighborhoods? Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling than what happened in congresses? When the surf of the centuries has made the great pyramids so much sand, the everlasting family will still be standing, because it is a celestial institution, formed outside telestial time.” Neal A. Maxwell

“Women of God can never be like women of the world. The world has enough women who are tough; we need women who are tender. There are enough women who are coarse; we need women who are kind. There are enough women who are rude; we need women who are refined. We have enough women of fame and fortune; we need more women of faith. We have enough greed; we need more goodness. We have enough vanity; we need more virtue. We have enough popularity; we need more purity.”
Margaret Nadauld

Sunday, May 12, 2013

family history whenever I darn well please it day

I am so excited about my recent family history discovery that I've decided it can't wait until Friday. I have to start back a couple of years for you to appreciate the truly cool nature of this. :) When Rachel and I were preparing for our trip to China and Korea a couple of years ago, I had a friend encourage me to video tape a lot while we were there. After debating about hauling an extra camera around, I remembered that my camera has video capability! (Yes, my memory is always that bad) I ordered some super big 32 gb cards to give me lots of storage space but really didn't video tape much of anything. (Ok, scratch that. We do have some pretty cute baby videos from starfish) On our last night in Daegu with Chris' dear sweet grandma, Chris' mom pulls out her Dad's "jokbo" (a huge book of family history going back to 1566) and says I might like it. I remember being so thrilled and thinking "I MIGHT like it??" We were leaving the Seoul at 11 the next morning and from the binding of the book, I know I wasn't going to be able to take it to get copies.  I thought about how I would be able to get the records in this jokbo home ALL night long until I had the simplistically awesome inspiration to photography each page. (yep, using those lovely memory cards!)

Skip ahead to two years later.  The jokbo has sat on my hard drive, untouched.  I was, once again, inspired to tap into our dear sweet exchange student as a resource to understand our Korean family history.  I wish I had been inspired a little earlier as she is leaving in a month, but I'm hoping that she will teach me how to fish between now and then.  She has helped me understand a lot of the basics and also helped me find a few great resources for Korean family history! (wanna translate a chinese character into Korean?  want a book with great english explanations to  the different parts of the jokbo?)  The book that I have goes to the 21st generation, which starts in 1566 and ends in the 37th generation.  I would love to know how to get the other book that goes even further back, BUT the 1400 pages of this book could keep us busy for a while.  Never has a Korean class been so tempting to me!

Bottom line, this Korean genealogy hurts my brain.   I can do a little each night before I want to pull out my hair because I am translating from Chinese (that I don't know) to Korean (that I don't know) to English.  Sigh.  Rewarding?  Oh, yeah!  And this weekend I taught Chloe and Autumn beginning jokbo translating lessons and Rachel has put her limited knowledge of Chinese characters (numbers) to use. They are in charge of translating dates while I get the places and names. I got the short end of the stick, but not for long.  Pretty soon they will be jokbo queens.  :)  And Rachel announced in sacrament meeting that I am "in the middle of translating our Korean genealogy book", so I better get past the first page!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

the happiest trip on earth

Last week our family took a trip to the happiest place on earth. (debatable about it actually being the happiest place, but it IS definitely the happiest theme park as we also went to Six Flags, which stunk in the happiest category!)  This involved two Sundays of me driving 7-10 hours instead of attending our normal church services, which really bummed me out.  I couldn't figure out a way to avoid it, but I sure do hate traveling on Sunday.   In young women's this year, the theme is "Stand Ye in Holy Places" and we've talked with the young women (girls from the ages of 12-18) about how this doesn't just mean hanging out at the temple 24-7, but it also means to learn how to create holy places in our own life.
I decided to apply this to our trip and looked for ways to make our car trip a holy place.

Sometimes I hate technology and sometimes I just love it so stinking much!  I had my lovely iphone loaded up with the latest general conference talks, hymns from the mormon tabernacle choir, and my favorite Sunday Variety playlist. (which is fabulous, if I do say so myself)  With a 7 hour car ride ahead of me, I started with conference and basically played it until the kids wanted something new. (they lasted pretty long!)  And then I brought in the music.  I love that the spirit can fill a car, a house, a room....anywhere that you invite him.  My car really became a holy place as we made room in our day for the spirit.  I felt my Savior's love as I listened to the words of the Prophet and to the many songs that sing of our Savior.  It was such a spiritual experience to feel the promptings of the spirit as I had opened up my heart.  I had opened up the door to personal revelation as I was (rather unsafely) jotting down tidbits of inspiration that I was receiving about parenting issues, ideas for young women's, thoughts about different young women in our ward and ways that I could help them and of course, things that I need to work on.

Sometimes, we tend to think of all of the things we shouldn't do.  We shouldn't listen to this music, we shouldn't watch that get the idea.  But I think it is much more important to find the things we should do.  I could have listened to any old music on my iphone and I probably wouldn't have been "hurt" by it.  I keep a dang clean stock of music.  But the music that I listened to on our drive drew me close to my Savior and reminded me (once again!) that he is so aware of each and every one of us and is WAITING for us to reach out to him.

Draw near unto me and I will draw near unto you.  Seek me diligently, and ye shall find me.  Ask and ye shall receive.  Knock and it will be opened unto you.  [D & C 88:63]

Monday, April 8, 2013

general conference recap

Wasn't conference fabulous??  I went in with a few questions and a few thoughts that I was hoping for a little bit of enlightening on and, as always, I was not let down.  Within the first session, there was a talk that was just for me, packaged with a pretty bow and sent with love from our Heavenly Father that was a direct answer to one of my questions.

By the last session (hour 7 of sit down church for a certain 4 and 7 year old...) I had to retreat to the hallways to keep Lilly under wraps.  It seems like Sunday afternoon is always hardest for the littles, but Lilly and I had a little conference recap of our own.  She kept asking about different apostles that we had listened to.  And just in case I felt like the kids were a little wiggly and squirmy and maybe got minimal spiritual nourishment from the weekend, Elise made it all worth it.  Someone from primary came to "interview" her and wish her a happy birthday after conference.  One question was asking what she does that helps her testimony grow, to which Elise answered "General Conference".   When the primary president said something along the lines of her kids playing while they watched conference at home, my sweet seven year old said "We watch it at the stake center. It is so peaceful there."  (On a side note, I told Elise that her reverence at conference was associated to how soon she would get to watch conference in Salt Lake...and she was downright amazing.  Autumn said that she asked some pretty thoughtful  questions about the talks, too.)

Friday, April 5, 2013

family history friday (numero seis)

I know this is not Family History related, but let me do a birthday recap before I get into my f.h. post.  Today, my sweet little Elise has a birthday.  For it, we went clamming in the freezing rain and wind.  Why, you ask, did we go clamming in the freezing rain?  Well, it all started at two this morning.  Sweet Elise came into our room and woke up Chris, saying "Dad, are you ready to go clamming?"  She had wanted clams and crabs for her birthday dinner and had it in her head that Chris would be facilitating that.  What else could we do?  SO Rachel and I rushed to get our clamming licenses, amid sweet comments like "I feel so special that we are going clamming for my birthday" and we gave it our darned best for about 40 minutes.  We left with one tiny little clam.  And then we enjoyed a trip to the Tillamook Cheese Factory, which made it all worth it.   Instead of clams and crab, Chris took her out for sushi. (although this sounds like a good deal for him, it was quite a sacrifice since she was dead set on going to a sushi track restaurant!)  Elise was such a sweet birthday girl.  She was thanking everyone all day long for everything that they did.  She kept saying that this was her best birthday ever and that was even with her lovely clamming trip AND her dream jello birthday cake turned out to be a slushy disaster.  After opening her presents, she went around giving each person a crazy sincere hug and thank you for their gift.  To top off such a sweet day, Elise asked if she could say the prayer since she is the birthday girl.  And it was the purest prayer ever.

Now, to my family history posting.  This weekend is General Conference!  This is a biannual conference for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that is a time for our prophet and other leaders to speak to us, inspire us, teach us and guide us.  I *love* conference.  I look forward to the answers that I will receive to my prayers, the insight that I gain from the 2 days of inspired speakers and the lovely way that the spirit works to guide my life in the right direction as I listen to conference.  I owe this love, 100% percent, to my parents and I hope to pass this love on to my girls. As far back as I can remember, my parents would haul all six of us kids to the nearest church building to watch all 4 sessions of conference.  I have fond memories of our little picnics at a nearby business park, I remember Thomas S. Monson (who is now our prophet) being my favorite speaker, but most importantly, I remember General Conference always being made a priority in our home.  Thank you, mom and dad, for passing down this legacy.

Monday, April 1, 2013

lillyisms of the day

after asking Lilly to do something, she matter of factly stated "Actually, I would prefer not to."
And to her, that was the final word on the issue.

And the next lillyism comes with a little bit of a disclaimer.  My bad word of choice is crap.  I say it a lot.  Up to now, I have had the luxury of saying it at will while not having to hear my children say it.  Today, for some reason, Lilly made it her word of the day of sorts.  She was saying it all stinking day long!  So we decided to implement a time out for saying crap.  A minute later she says crab, but in a crap sort of way.  And then it was "cra...." when she dropped her pen. (and not the "cra" that was her catching herself, but it was said in a way where she was just trying to circumvent my new rule)
 "But I didn't say crap, mom."  Ugh.

Finally, back to the beginning of the day.  While the older girls were in piano, I decided to take Lilly and Elise to photography a nearby cemetery for Billion Graves.  Two rows into the cemetery, Lilly tells me she needs to go to the bathroom.  This is a pioneer cemetery with no bathroom facilities in it or near it.  I asked her to sit in the car to buy a little time while I finished the row.  (my memory doesn't allow me to stop mid row)  I return to the car and tell the girls to buckle up so we can go find a bathroom.  Lilly told me that she didn't need to go to the bathroom anymore.  I say a silent "yeah!" and bribe them with breakfast burritos to do a few more rows with me.  About thirty minutes later, I notice a suspicious wet mark on Lilly's rear.  When I asked her if she peed in her pants, she matter of factly denied all charges.  When I asked her again, she said that Elise had suggested that she pee in the grass behind the car while they were waiting for me.  Girls, we are not boys.  Peeing in the grass is not something we approach in such a willy nilly fashion.  It requires strategic squatting that shouldn't be attempted without me.  We had a nice talk about when we can and can't pee in the grass.  Cemeteries?  Nope.  And then we drove 15 minutes home and 15 minutes back to piano so we could get Lilly all cleaned up.  Guess what we talked about during the drive?  Yep.  When to pee on the grass and when not to.  I like to drive home a good point.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

family history friday, barely.

It may be 8 minutes past midnight, but I am still awake so we are counting this as a family history friday post that is actually done on Friday.  And THAT is final.

I made the near fatal error of entering Fabric Depot earlier this week.  For those of you who are not familiar with this store, there are three important things to know about it.  1. It is a huge store with decadent fabric all throughout 2. It ruins any future Joann's trips because nothing can compare 3. Luckily, they are located more than an hour away.  So, what does this have to do with family history?  It is a bit of a stretch, but like Dieter F. Uchtdorf and his planes, I think I can pull this off.

I "stopped" in to Fabric Depot because I happened to be on that side of Portland and I was looking for a beautiful family tree panel by my favorite artist, Sarah Jane.  (See, there is a family history connection!)  Alas, they had no Sarah Jane fabric and I was stuck buying a little bit of this and that, all the while rationalizing that each purchase was for an upcoming birthday.  Because Elise is next in line for birthdays in our house, I will show you her project first.  It was a cute design that already had the work done in it for a quilt so I decided to personalize it for her.  I embroidered Gordon B. Hinkley's "be's" throughout the top, leaving her a legacy of values that I hope she will remember as she looks at it. (yet another family history link!)  Because I am a sentimental sort, I did it in my handwriting and signed it for her to remember who made it and when.  Hopefully, this will be an heirloom for her to hold onto throughout the years.

As a little humorous side note, Elise had a little bit of a hormonal day earlier this week.  She was crying about *everything*.  I can help my children work through problems and frustrations but when you start crying about a new problem everytime I help you with the last one, I tend to get a little exasperated.  (just a wee bit.)  On this particular day, I was working on this blanket that Elise doesn't know is for her.  Ironically, I was working on the square below that reads "Be positive".  Hopefully it will help her on her next "the world is about to end" sort of a day.  On this particular day, it gave me a little laugh. (which I needed!)

Saturday, March 16, 2013

yw on the brain

And I'm back to slacking on family history friday!

To make up for it, I thought I would at least tell you what I've been so busy with.  :)  I have spent the last month-2 months fine tuning our first (hopefully annual) yw retreat for our ward, which I got home from earlier today.  I wont go as far to say that it resembled a fine tuned retreat, but we had a fabulous time!!

A few things that I felt were successful:
•devotionals, spread throughout the weekend (and all started with hymns to get the sillies out and the spirit in)  Most of these were taught by yw, who did a pretty amazing job
•value workshops: we had workshops for each value that could be an optional personal progress experience.  We didn't bill them as "personal progress experiences" because we have several girls that are very hesitant to do anything personal progress related.  They were all excited and pleasantly surprised when they got to sign off 7 experiences at the end!
•crafts: we had a few crafts here and there for the girls to play with, included braided headbands, heart rocks and adorable jewelry.
•t-shirts: we ordered some stinking cute t-shirts for the girls that say "I'm a mormon.  I know it.  I live it.  I love it."  Our first devotional was talking about this talk by Ann M. Dibbs and it was pretty downright inspirational to see all of the yw proudly wearing this bold testimony throughout the weekend AND  to the cheese factory.
•the girls were spectacular, as always.  they were sweet to each other, sweet to us leaders and 100% awesome.  I *love* my calling.

We had a healthy dose of free time, late night giggling and saran wrapping random objects around the house, but we also had spiritual moments throughout the weekend.    There was also a lot of serious chic bonding, which I tend to think is pretty dang vital to our yw program.  All in all, all of that planning paid off and I sure do hope that we get to do this retreat next year, too.  We couldn't have done it without a very generous ward member that let us use their beach house, a very generous ward member that brought his camper out for our priesthood holders AND a very generous mom and dad that came to watch the kiddoes while we were retreating.   (ooh....I forgot to tell you the best part!  That generous ward member that let us use his beach house?  Yep, he gave us a couple of extra days for the hubby and me to relax before the retreat.  amazing, right?)

Monday, March 4, 2013

fancy tricks a la Elise

I knew it would be coming soon, but I wasn't sure how soon.  Elise's desire to be a big girl had to outweigh her extreme fear of falling and injuring herself and today was the day.  I came home to a very happy Elise that had figured out how to ride her bike in a matter of minutes. (and all by herself)  She was pretty excited to hear that all new bike riders get to go out for ice cream (she is my only kid who hasn't known about that in their efforts to learn how to ride), but it made for a sad Lilly.  I was told *at least* ten times tonight that she actually learned how to ride her bike when she was three, but she is pretending that she doesn't know how to...."Now do I get ice cream??"

Friday, March 1, 2013

family history friday [actually on friday, to boot!]

Genealogy is a lovely hobby for someone that tends to be a little add.  You can research one person, hop on over to another line and then if things every get too tricky, you can go something more along the lines of playing with pictures of your ancestors. (which, quite frankly, is the best part of genealogy!)

I am probably not much of a serious genealogist, but I sure do enjoy the different fun parts that I can jump to and from.  Yes, that is my type of genealogy. :)

Last summer, my mom came on a little family history trip with the girls and me.  We drove to eastern Washington to visit the quaint town that my great grandmother grew up in.  We got to peek around my 2nd great grandmother's house (from the outside, through the windows) and listen to my mother's sweet memories of her visits there.  She remembered the layout of the house, along with where different pieces of furniture were.  I am a sucker for all things nostalgic so this trip was a success from the get go.  We visited the cemetery that my 4th great grandmother  and on down were buried at.  We were able to dig through all sorts of great finds at the Dayton library and copy them like crazy.  Even my grumpy teenager that didn't want to come on the trip at all was excited to find references to our ancestors in the old newspapers.  THIS is my favorite type of genealogy.  I love finding little tidbits and pieces of my ancestors' lives.

Below is a picture of my 3rd great grandmother with her grandkids.  I have always felt that writing on pictures is its own little sort of evil. UNTIL I started going through family pictures.   I am so grateful for the names that my grandmothers felt inclined to write on a good 90% of their pictures.  Below is an example of a picture from my great grandma's book and a picture from my 2nd great grandma's book.  The names are helpful on each picture, but I love that the top picture has  last names that allow me to know which cousins belonged to which families.   The lesson from today's post?  Put some information on your pictures, even if it seems redundant at times.  Your descendants will thank you someday.  And check this out: I have a picture of my girls on this same exact porch.  Isn't that amazing?

Monday, February 25, 2013

shaking things up, as always.

We have lucky enough to have the missionaries over at our house to teach us some of the basic principles of our church.  Tonight's lesson was about ways for us to improve our communication with our Heavenly Father and ways for us to listen more carefully to our Heavenly Father.

We have a brand new missionary (or a greenie, as we affectionally call them) so I had a little talk with the girls about participating and generally behaving themselves.  Hannah was our chatterbox for the evening,  but in a good way.  She had some sweet insights and surprised me with some of her thoughts.  (they were rather deep for a nine year old!)  The moment that it wasn't so good?  When one of the missionaries said something about the celestial kingdom and implied that he could see her there, Hannah popped up with a sweet nine year thought that unfortunately turned into speech.  "If you make it there..."  Nice, Hannah.  Nice.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

family history friday might need a new name

Geesh.  I am really bad at this Friday thing.  Yesterday was a day that was full of many good things that needed doing, thus blogging had to wait.  Sorry, you 2 readers out there.  :) (cough.  mom and dad. cough.)

I have actually been having a few too many late nights this week while working on genealogy.  For those of you out there that haven't been bitten by the genealogy bug, let me warn you that it can be a wee bit addicting.  Last week I got a letter from my great Uncle Joe that talked about where my 2nd great grandma and grandpa lived. (in different places)  I had no idea that they were divorced (although my dad and grandma were very aware of this, I guess) and I was a little surprise that a couple that was married in 1881 got divorced.  This got my searching around on to find details on who they married and when they got divorced.  In the process, I ended up getting seriously side tracked and finding my 2nd great grandpa's siblings and their families.  Some of this info was not on new.familysearch yet so I ended up entering many new names and completing a few families on there.  It was exciting, but it kept me up late.

A little interesting thing I found was John Wesley Tunnell's second wife.  Everyone seemed to think that he never remarried, but there is a 1910 census that has him remarried to a Henrietta Tunnell.  On the 1920 census he is divorced and all of the records after that have him widowed.  I then found Henrietta Tunnell living with John's brother and wife (who was a creepy 32 years younger than him) for a couple of census records.  AND she kept the last name Tunnell, even on her headstone.  Interesting....

and here is a question for you, dad.  Which John Wesley Tunnell is this?  

family history tip of the day: don't use the same exact name for several generations in a row.  
(especially if you are both going to marry a girl names Mary.)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

my grandma mcallister's baby book (in a more durable form)

Among the many treasures my mom and I have come across lately was the baby book that my great grandmother kept on my Grandma McAllister.   It is falling apart (with it being 85 years old now!) and not really in a state that would allow our kids to look through it without me hovering over them.  This was on the top of my family history project list since it was, by far, the easiest. :)  I scanned in the pages and uploaded them to Heritage Makers. (they are the only ones that have a book that is the right dimensions!)  I only ordered one book because I knew it would either turn out horrible or just the way I imagined.  I've been waiting hesitantly to see how it would turn out, planning on ordering a bunch of them if it turned out alright and counting it as a minimal loss if it didn't.

The package came yesterday and I was thrilled to see it turn out exactly how I imagined!  I made every person that walked into my house yesterday look at it. (Ok, the only person I really had to MAKE look at it was Chris. I also made him say affirming statements about how lovely it had turned out. Yep, I'm that wife.)   And I might have facetimed my mom to show it off to her too.  :)  A person with a certain amount of self control might have been able to hold off until April's birthday to show her, but I am definitely not that person.

Monday, February 18, 2013

family history fronday

In a prebirthday/new beginnings is only in 2 days hysteria, I completely forgot About family history Friday.  I know!! I was reminded by my More schedule minded child on Saturday but I was just to dang stressed to do it until today.  Rachel is 15 now and new beginnings turned out fabulously so now I can sit down and make up for my blogging blunder.  (Which can't be any bigger than me thinking I had finished the 3rd season of downton Abby when I had actually missed the finale and its tragic ending!!)

I just finished making a small book through heritage makers that is basically just a reprint of my grandmothers baby book.  I scanned in every page and threw them into a book thAt will hopefully turn out.  The sweetest part of her baby book (ranked right before the pages that are titled "first creeping" and "first short clothes") are all of the heartfelt messages that her mother included (they were short but sweet!) here are few of the excerpts:

first short clothes: She began wearing her short dresses when between 3 and 4 months of age.  Her grandmother Israel shortened her slips when she was here to visit her in May.

pets and toys:  Her big cat, Tom, is her especial delight at the present.  She has always loved him.  Also her English Calico, Nappy, she loves too.  For Christmas, she received a kiddy car, a rockie rooster and any number of toys which she had great fun with.

mother's notes: I took her bottle away from her before she was a year old and she did not seem to miss it.  She started eating cereal, apples in all forms, toast, potatoes, custards, etc.  Ate 3 of her meals with us and had one of her own at 2:00 pm.  While we visited in Dayton in 1929, her grandad taught her to wink one eye at the age of 18 mo.  She was everyone's pet at that time.  We enjoyed our visit there so much.  Our visit was saddened by the death of "grandad" Jochen of whom she thought much.  She always had a smile for him and he in turn just worshipped her.  I almost believe she will always remember him.

And Friday was a happy mail day...Uncle Joe wrote me back with more exciting details about my great grandpa! (And, as an extra bonus, my dad blogged more about him!)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Lilly, Lilly, Lilly.

Lilly has always been one to explain how she is feeling and why, despite the fact that she is only four.  She has been doing it since she could talk and yet it still surprises me when she does.  Silly me.  Yesterday she came to me with a photo album from when she was a baby, sobbing.  She proceeds to tell me, through the tears, that she wishes that she were still a baby.  If she were a baby, everyone would love her and think she was cute. (Sorry, Lilly, everyone still thinks you are cute!)  What I didn't know until later was that Lilly had been blacklisted from their room because of her refusal to clean up a mess that she had very willingly helped make.  This caused her big sisters to say some hurtful things that lead up to this breakdown (which they shouldn't have, obviously!).  I just thought it was kind of adorable that her solution to the whole thing was not to clean up her own dang mess but to yearn for the days when she was younger. (even though she is pretty little still)  
Lilly, if you were a baby, you would not have been allowed to ride on Rachel's back for this run. 

Friday, February 8, 2013

family history friday

Last week I told you about my great grandfather, Guy Dudley Tunnell and going deeper than the pictures on my walls.  What I didn't tell you was that I mailed off a little note to my great uncle asking for a few stories about my grandpa.  One of the little perks about doing genealogy is getting little surprises in the mail.  It really is fun!  I heard back from Uncle Joe in record time and loved his sweet little letter.    He told me a little bit more about how my great grandma and great grandpa met!  You know how I told you that they lived next door to each other?  Apparently, my g grandpa liked to tease my g grandma about always coming over to "visit his dad", when she was really coming to flirt with my g grandpa.  Uncle Joe surmises that there had to be some truth to this since his mom blushed every time his dad told the story.         I also found out that not only was Guy blind as he got older, he never had good vision in his left eye.  (he could only tell light vs. dark in that eye!)                      
          And now for my little plug.  Gosh, I love that site.  It really does make doing genealogy more accessible, more exciting and easier to organize.  I don't know what I do without it!  If you haven't had a chance, I highly recommend getting a trial and playing around on their site.  Heck, that is where I found proof that my grandma got a little speeding ticket. (that she denies)  They have access to many newspaper articles that tell way more about our ancestors' personal life than newspapers currently do.  Their collection of census records, draft registrations and so on are really fun to look through.  Enjoy!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

I have a new hero in the blogging world.  Shannon over at The Redheaded Hostess has helped me immensely  in my calling at church.  She is a serious scriptorian and has quite the history in teaching youth in our church a love of the scriptures.  With our new curriculum for the young women (to use on our Sunday young women lessons), she came out with a lovely little book to help me keep all of my thoughts, notes and research straight.   With my memory being pretty spotty at best, this book helps me keep track of everything I study so I can seem a little less ditzy during class.

This past Sunday I was in charge of teaching a lesson to all of our young women.  (Normally, I am just teaching the 16-18 year olds, but this included the 12-18 year olds)  Our topic for the month is the Plan of Salvation and my first instinct was to skip over the basic lesson that teaches the nitty gritty of our fabulous Plan of Happiness, but I kept feeling like I needed to be teaching this lesson.  I used Shannon's outline that she had used over and over in seminary, allowing the girls to break up into partners and to teach each other the Plan of Salvation, writing down questions they came across as they did this.  I don't think many of them wrote down questions, but I walked around helping them a bit and came to find out that there were a whole heck of a lot of girls  that weren't very familiar with the Plan of Salvation.  It is foundational knowledge and even my mini scriptorian of a daughter said that she felt like it hadn't been covered in church much as a teenager.  (And she isn't one to not pay attention or forget!)  I am glad that the Holy Ghost nudged me (over and over) until I listened so that we could cover this more in depth.  I didn't feel like my lesson went crazy well but I do feel like the girls left being able to explain the Plan of Salvation, which I will take as a win.

Friday, February 1, 2013

family history friday

My dad and I were having a little chat on the phone when we came up with a little bit of brilliance.  I was remarking that I don't have much to blog about, my dad was saying that I should blog about family history and I pointed out that he is the one with the great family history stories....which evolved into us both committing to do a family history post each Friday.  I have found that my parents, grandparents, great aunts, etc... have much more valuable information than they think they do.  Once I sit down with them and just ask a few questions, they have these little tidbits of info that give us a glimpse into their lives and the personalities of our difference ancestors.

An example of this would be my Great Grandpa, Guy Dudley Tunnell.  I have a black and white picture of him when he was older, with his arms crossed and what could be translated as a grumpy expression on his face.   After talking to my dad and my grandma, my image of him changed completely.  First of all, he was blind as he got older.   (that explains his distant look in the picture!)  He also dyed his hair bright orange until the day he died. (Oh, the downfalls of black and white photography)  But it is the next two stories that I love the most.  When some of my grandma's kids were younger, they lived farther away from their Grandpa Tunnell.  He knew he would need some warming up to win a place in their hearts so he always made sure he had gum in his shirt pocket.  It didn't take long for my Aunt to discover that her Grandpa always had a treat for her in his pocket and that she would have to come to him to get it!  While they lived far away, my Grandma and Grandpa (his son) would write weekly letters to his parents.  My great grandma and grandpa always were very consistent about writing back, also.  If my grandma every slacked on her letter writing, my great grandpa would always inquire about her broken hand.  :)   And up above, he is with his second wife.  (his first wife ran off, leaving him with 3 small boys.)  After moving back in with his mother, he met our great grandma, Linnie Sylva Lee. (she lived next door)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

(a totally unrelated picture)

I am already out of things to blog about?  Two posts and I've said everything that needs saying?  I'm digging for something, really.  :)

This year I am attempting to slowly ease myself back into the scrapbooking world.  I used to be quite the avid (or addicted, I guess) scrapbooker.  As the years have passed, I have turned more to digital scrapbooking just out of convenience. (And because, quite frankly, I don't spend a fraction of the time that I used to on crafts in general)  The sad part is that the girls really don't enjoy the digital books nearly as much as they do the "old fashioned" scrapbooks.  They are always pulling out the big and clunky books to look through and they barely touch the new ones.  In an effort to try to make something more personable for them to enjoy, I am attempting to do the Project Life album this year that I already told you guys about.  I say attempting because I've already missed several days.  And it is only January. BUT I have been journaling at least a little every night AND I have found myself taking pictures of everyday goodness instead of just pulling out the camera here and there.  So I might be cheating here and there, not having genuine pictures from everyday of the year, but we will have a much more thorough depiction of this year.  In theory, right?

Lilly's cute quote of the day:  After getting a smiley face on her hand at costco, I reminded her to say thank you to the nice costco lady.  She turns to her and says "Thank you!  I love you!", to which I responded with a reminder that we don't tell strangers that we love them.   She simply said "Mom!  She's the COSTCO LADY!"  Apparently costco ladies are not strangers.  :)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

genealogy goodness

I am in the process of scanning in large amounts of family history pictures and it is just so dang fun!  It is slow going as I am scanning in at a pretty large dpi, but I'm just plugging along.  I love that my mom's side of the family has a plethora of pictures that help paint an image of their lives, personalities and their priorities.  I can't help but think that my great great grandmother had a tender heart when I find her sweet notes on pictures of my grandma.  I love the mock letter from Santa that my grandma got.  It tells a story of how he came across her new teddy bear.

This brings me to our lovely package that we received today.  It was like Christmas, but way better.  My Aunt sent us some of her family treasures to enjoy and I don't think she could have prepared me for how cool it was going to be.  Amongst the treasures was a copy of Pollyanna.  Not only do my girls enjoy this as one of their favorites, but this particular copy was my great grandma's.  It was given to her by her grandma (now we're at my 3rd Great grandma) and she gave it to my grandma for Christmas one year.  We love it!!  There are many pictures that I am trying to match up with family, but I think there will be some that will always be a mystery.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

I'm back. (for now)

Thanks to a little talkin' to from my dear father, I am blogging.  I have to confess though that I am purely driven by guilt at this point.  In my defense, I have been journaling (for a whole week now!) using the lovely reminders at Ohlife.  To this, my dad responded "Can your family read that?" Well, no...but when I'm dead and have finished my lovely Project Life album for this year, they can.   Ok, so I got his point and decided to give this blogging thing a try. Again. :)

What is filling up our lives at the Kang house these days?  The same stuff that was a year ago.  Church, school and piano.  A few changes?  We have an adopted daughter of sorts this year. (A fabulously sweet exchange student from South Korea)  This results in kimchi always being in our fridge (good think I like it now!) and us having Korean food at least once a week on her dinner night.  It is pretty dang delicious.  Rachel is attending seminary, which means I am getting up much earlier for 5 out of 7 days.  Rachel is lovely type a sort of gal that pulls my blankets off of me (and nags me like a parent until I finally wake up!) each morning so I can get her to seminary 15 minutes early.  I am driving kids around much more than I am used to and, quite frankly, much more than I would like to be. With that being said, I much rather be driving them around than having someone else do the driving.  I firmly believe in being at the crossroads with our kids, especially as they become teenagers.  If this means setting aside nights to drive to church dances, getting up at insane hours in the morning or filling up the gas tank a few extra times, it is 100% worth it.  The conversations that are had, the tidbits of info that are given and (best of all) being there when they are most excited about where they just went or are about to go.  If you hear about a dance the morning after, you hear much less than if you get details right afterwards.

One of my biggest time fillers (it is a joyful time filler, just like the others!) is my calling in Young Womens.  I have to say that it is my favorite calling of all time.  It keeps me from spontaneous trips more than I would prefer, but I *love* our youth.  The young women are just downright incredible and they are so much fun to work with.  To make it even better, our church has an amazingly inspired program to help the young women grow closer to their Heavenly Father.  It is pure joy getting to help implement inspiration AND getting to watch its results.  

 Ok, its been fun.  Now I'm off to do school with the kiddoes.  :)