Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Ride the Brand, Love the Land

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I found myself at yet another wonderful Salt Lake City seminar with my husband last month.  Typically the annual seminar is held every July, but it was earlier than normal this year.  Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, Young Women General President, spoke to the wives for the women's luncheon.  What an awesome afternoon it was!  It seemed as though there were about 100 of us present.  

She shared an interesting story about a group of wild horses who were trained to assist the workers in one of the Church’s first farmland developments back in the early 1900s.  She told about the horses' great contributions to the workload -  their fire, tenacity, and never-ending drive.  However, at the end of the day, they all had one major fault.  For some reason - as soon as the work was done for the day - they’d all want to rush back towards the island across the river where they came from.  The workers could hardly contain the horses from jumping in the river to swim back towards their home.  

She encouraged all of us ladies NOT to be like those wild horses, not to turn back…looking for something more.  We are to put away childish things…to be wives who embrace the land, ride the brand, and make home wherever we create that peaceful haven for our husband’s to come home to after a long day’s work…to find joy in every day of this blessed journey.  

“No one leads a perfect or stress-free life.  No one.  The key to happiness is gratitude.  Seek daily divine intervention and be grateful.” - Sister Oscarson

The Florida segment created THIS AWESOME VIDEO (click here) that I love; it involves several of the gentlemen Jared works with and portrays the spirit of this great company.  Jared’s experience as General Manager of the Church-owned farms in Argentina was an experience we will always endear, and furthermore - what a blessing it is to continue to rub shoulders with our Argentine friends every year at this annual seminar!

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 ^^^ Monica & I at the Old Jerusalem site in Elberta, UT (the set for all recent Church Bible videos) ^^^  

A group of us women were able to tour this site during the seminar.  Being a dedicated site, we were asked to keep our photos sacred - but just note that the emphasis here is on how incredible it is that I’m able to reunite with Moni every year.  She is one of my dearest friends, and I love her.  Our conversations may be simple, but the love behind our words overrides any language barrier in our way.  Our hearts understand each other.  

AgriNorthwest (here in Washington) has been a great fit for us.  We anticipate being here for years to come, and I know the Lord has brought us here for a reason.  I’m happy for Jared and his choice career.  I love this company more each year and appreciate the added blessing of being under the umbrella of the Church.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Nurse Log

  One of the great blessings of conjoining with a new family is being able to rub shoulders with people I would’ve never known otherwise.  Brad has a first cousin named Amy who lost her husband a few years ago.  She is quickly becoming one of my heroes.  She shared this beautiful analogy on social media a few weeks ago.  I was deeply touched, and I find myself going back to her words again and again.  


"I found this wonderful tree a couple weekends ago when I traveled to the Pacific Northwest and was hiking near Snoqualmie Falls (outside Seattle). This tree is a symbolic reminder for my life as a widow.

Do you see the old tree that died and how there are new trees growing around the old? The old tree that died is called a nurse log and gives nutrients to the new trees. The new trees can grow better from the nurse log rather than starting over in new ground. I was in awe of this forest with all of its many shades of green moss, ferns and leaves. This forest didn't stop when a tree died, it kept growing and adding to the forest and used the nutrients from trees that had come and gone.

I'm sure you see the symbolism. I'm 2.5 years out and I feel like I have learned and grown from this tragedy of losing my husband. I hope to keep becoming better and making something beautiful with this life instead of feeling like my life is over too. A beautiful life for me and my children is still in store even despite a huge loss in my forest."

  Some days I wake up feeling a bit overwhelmed, unsure of how to keep moving forward - but I, too, know that there is significant life in store, and I trust that my forest will be bigger and greener and more incredible than ever could’ve imagined as new growth emerges from nurse logs and time marches on.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Spring Break & The Flying Pig Farm

Well, hello again!  How are you?  I’ve missed you.  We’re enjoying summer, but here I am in July - finally catching a moment to breathe and reflect on the beautiful season spring was.  Spring Break in April was the perfect time to rejuvenate and get our wits about us in order to jump into the busy end-of-school-year mayhem.  Jared took the kids on a ride or two through the yard in this rig.  I loved watching Luke’s face through it all; he was pretty nervous, but yet I know he really enjoyed it.

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^^^ A front yard picnic during lunchtime. ^^^

I love picnics in the yard and find myself doing them a lot these days.  

The kids and I took the four hour drive to "The Flying Pig Farm" in Kuna, Idaho to visit my mom & Grandpa Brad for the first time as a new married couple.  As Carlie likes to say, "Wow...just wow.”  (She is so funny about life; I love her grateful heart.)  I fell in love with Kuna and the feeling I had there.  I know Heavenly Father’s hand is in all things; I find great comfort knowing that my mom has a special companion by her side.  With each step I take through this journey, perspective is altered.  Blessings are emerging through the heartache, and I’m learning that God’s plan knows no bounds.      

I foresee many great trips ahead of us to Kuna, and I’m grateful that my children have another grandpa to love in their lives.

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