Sunday, April 20, 2014

Day 110, April 20

Today is Easter Sunday.  I wish I had profound and moving words for such a special day.  But I don't possess such words, so I turned to the hymn book where I found the beautiful song "I Believe in Christ" by Bruce R. McConkie

"I believe in Christ; he stands supreme!
From him I'll gain my fondest dream;
And while I strive through grief and pain,
His voice is heard:  "Ye shall obtain."
I believe in Christ; so come what may,
With him I'll stand in that great day
When on this earth he comes again
To rule among the sons of men.    (Fourth verse)

Joy for today:  believeing in Christ

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Day 109, April 19

I found the following story in the International Business Times from several years ago:

A 16-year old boy in Hebei, China, Lui Shi Ching, had carried his friend to school daily for the previous eight years.  His friend Lu Shao had a congenital disorder that made it difficult to talk.  Lui Shi Ching, smaller than Lu shao, decided to help carry him home one day when Lu Shao's mother didn't make it (to school) on time to pick him up.  Since then, he carried Lu Shao to and from school and even to restrooms.  Lui Shi Ching didn't even tell his own parents what he was doing for four years.  When asked how he could carry such a heavy load, he said, "I was happy, helping him out."  Lu Shao wrote in his diary that Lui Shi Ching's help had lifted a dark cloud in his life and let sunshine in.

When I read this story, I was so touched that I knew I had to share it here.  What a selfless act this boy performed for his friend.  And he did it not once, not twice, but for eight years.

Joy for today:  finding such an example of love.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Day 108, April 18

"Growing older frees you from all sorts of previous restrictions and guilt."  -- Betty Friedan

Darn it all.  Even at my advanced age, I still have restrictions and guilt.  But I'm getting over them.

Ten or so years ago, our family traveled to Utah to attend an 80th birthday party for my Aunt Elaine.  Guests were given name tags to wear.  Because I like to mix things up a bit, I went around switching people's name tags.  Imagine my father's surprise when he ended up wearing my name tag. (I tried to explain the humor in that, but Dad only shook his head at me.  My sense of humor sometimes baffled him.)  Anyway, it made for some interesting conversations.

Joy for today:  mixing things up.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Day 107, April 17

"Beauty is accepting what you are, who you are, and how old you are.  Ugliness is whe you try to be something else."  Sohpia Loren

We've talked before about beauty, what it is and what it's not.  Are big breasts beauty?  Maybe.  If they belong to you.  Are wrinkles beauty?  The thinking's divided on that.  I say yes.  I always figured I'd earned every one of my wrinkles.  (Have you ever been chastized by an orthodontist because your braces-wearing child has failed to brush his teeth sufficiently?  Nothing like wallowing in child-induced humility to give a mother wrinkles.)  Are freckles beauty?  Well, I hope so, since I've got lots of these sun kisses.

Joy for today:  accepting who you are.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Day 106, April 16

"Life is a big thing, it's got size, and you shouldn't be applying your passion to puny things."--Peggy Noonan

A few days ago, I used Mother Theresa's words about "small things."  Now I'm quoting someone else, saying "Life is a big thing."  Are these contradictory?

I had to think about it for a while and decided, no, they're not contradictory at all.  For the small things done in great love (Mother Theresa) can become the big things (in the above quote).

I spend my days doing "small things."  I go visiting teaching to the sisters in our ward, I write cards, I am on my knees frequently praying for friends and family.  All small things.  But, I like to believe, they become big things when done with passion and love.

Joy for today:  making small things big.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Day 105, April 15

"Grandmas ... can shed the yoke of responsibility, relax, and enjoy their grandchidren in a way that was not possible when they were raising their own children.  And they can glow in the realization that here is their seed of life that will harvest generations to come."--Erma Bombeck

Don't you love Erma Bombeck?  She always hit the proverbial nail on its proverbial head.  Whether in her humor or in more serious insights as the above, she knew what the rest of us were thinking and then said it in a few well-chosen words.

I believe I've shared in the past my own "shedding responsiblity" grandma experience of mixing up brownie batter with my then 3 year old granddaughter Reynna.  Rather than baking it as I'd intended, I suggested to Reynna that we each dip our spoons in it and have a bite.   One bite turned into two, and, pretty soon, we had eaten the whole bowl of batter one spoonful at a time.

Would I have done that with my own children?  Absolutely not.  I was too much the "good mother."  Isn't it strange how being a good mother can differ so strikingly from being a good grandmother?

Joy for today:  being a grandmother.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Day 104, April 14

Do you have trouble following up?  I do.  I have allowed many opportunities to slip by when I have failed to follow up.

Many years ago, I submitted a book proposal to an editor.  To my surprise, the editor wrote back, saying she would like to see the entire manuscript.  To my shame, I failed to follow up.  Any time I see this editor at a writers' conference, I cringe and pray she doesn't remember my name.

An elderly sister in our ward (church) asked me to bring her a copy of one of my books.  I promised I would do so.  Before I followed up, this sweet sister died.  I still berate myself for failing to follow up.

Fortunately, there have been instances when I have followed up.  How great is my joy that I did not let those opportunities pass by.

Joy for today:  following up.