Monday, November 24, 2008

Thanksgiving Ode To Tom

With Thanksgiving approaching, we all have the same thing on the brain-food, food, and more food. But do we ever stop to think about the sacrifices made by the one who subjects himself to being our main course? Do we ever pause and give a moment of silence to the one who rest upon our serving platters, the one who is stuffed, roasted, basted, and sliced, his scent filling the air? Do we ever stop to give a moment of thanks to the one who sacrifices his life so that we may all attain that inevitable restful afternoon nap after feasting upon his tasty flesh?

Yes, I am talking about Tom, our ever-present Thanksgiving guest who is brought in naked with only plastic to cover him, and leaves a carcass.
Today I would like to pay tribute to Tom for his never ending bravery and strong will, and yes, his will is strong, for he continues to come back to us each year, knowing the process will be repeated. He is a bird among birds!

Ode To Tom
He walks in beauty,
feathers shining in the sunlight,
wearing his red crown like a badge of courage.
His chest puffed, feet poised, legs set to walk through the fire,
his crow calling, I am ready for stuffing! Do your worst!
Roast me! I am here, ready for the coming seasoning!
Knives slicing, fingers picking at his insides,
his carcass interred in the evening light for felines to claim.
Though leg, breast, and thigh be lost,
his honor shall not.
And death shall have no dominion.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Suggested Reading

Book: The Gift
Author: Richard Paul Evans
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
The Book
Nathan Hurst hated Christmas. For the rest of the world it was a day of joy and celebration; for Nathan it was simply a reminder of the event that destroyed his childhood until a snowstorm, a canceled flight, and an unexpected meeting with a young mother and her very special son would show him that Christmas is indeed the season of miracles.

This was another tearjerker for me, a story that teaches anything is possible if you just believe.
The Gift can be purchased at your local bookstore or from

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Monday, November 17, 2008

Motherhood Morning

I'm having a "Glorying In Motherhood" morning. Of our eight children, we have four left at home, and so far, nobody has argued or gotten into a fight. I have not yelled. The house is experiencing a harmonic moment and I'm feeling pretty grateful.
Of course, I know it won't last, and any coming moment could be the moment that the screaming, crying, whining, and arguing begins. There will be more dings in the walls from the boys wrestling, spots on the carpet (some of them blood, depending on what they are doing) and Legos in the path of the vacuum cleaner. Before they have all moved out, the house might even fall down around us, but times like these make it all worth it. The moments of grace are sure nice.
I love being a mother. Even with the trials and hair-pulling moments, there is nothing like it:o)

Suggested Reading
Book: Eve And The Choice Made In Eden
Author: Beverly Campbell
Publisher: Bookcraft/Deseret Book

Is the way that women evaluate their own worth affected still by the biblical story of Mother Eve? Author Beverly Campbell suggests, "In much of the literature and in most of the histories referring to women there is an undercurrent of apology, as though there is something not quite 'all right' about being a woman. In looking for the source of this unease, I came to recognize that it could be traced to accounts of the Creation and to the ever-prevalent and negative characterizations of Eve."

She writes of three levels from which the story of Eden must be viewed: as historical fact, as a series of symbols and metaphors, and as a place for a beginning our own search for spiritual understanding and relevance in life. This compelling book may change forever your perception of our first parents and the choice they made.

This is one of the best books I've ever read and it gave me a greater understanding of Eve. without a doubt, it increased my love for this courageous, wonderful and very wise woman.

Eve And The Choice Made In Eden can be purchased at Deseret Book, Seagull Book, and

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Monday, November 10, 2008

Abinadi - By H.B. Moore

Today I feel inspired to post a quote by Elder Neal A. Maxwell. This address to the LDS Church members is both inspiring and very, very fitting, especially at a time when this country is facing, and will yet face so much turmoil.

'Make no mistake about it, brothers and sisters, in the months and years ahead, events are likely to require each member to decide whether or not he will follow the First Presidency. Members will find it more difficult to halt longer between two opinions. President Marion G. Romney said, many years ago, that he had 'never hesitated to follow the counsel of the Authorities of the Church even though it crossed my social, professional or political life.'

'This is hard doctrine, but it is particularly vital doctrine in a society which is becoming more wicked. In short, brothers and sisters, not being ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ includes not being ashamed of the prophets of Jesus Christ. . . . Your discipleship may see the time when such religious convictions are discounted. . . . This new irreligious imperialism seeks to disallow certain opinions simply because those opinions grow out of religious convictions.
'Resistance to abortion will be seen as primitive.. Concern over
the institution of the family will be viewed as untrendy and unenlightened....Before the ultimate victory of the forces of righteousness, some skirmishes will be lost. Even in these, however, let us leave a record so that the choices are clear, letting others do as they will in the face of prophetic counsel. There will also be times, happily, when a minor defeat seems probable, but others will step forward, having been rallied to rightness by what we do. We will know the joy, on occasion, of having awakened a slumbering majority of the decent people of all races and creeds which was, till then, unconscious of itself. Jesus said that when the fig trees put forth their leaves, 'summer is nigh.' Thus warned that summer is upon us, let us not then complain of the heat.'

This address was given in 1985.

So, are we there yet?

I think the answer is obvious.

There is so much opposition in the world to fight against, but fight against it, we must! We must be strong in our resolve to do the Lord's will. Which brings me to a wonderful book I read this week.
Abinadi by H.B. Moore is a great novel that really strengthened my love for the prophet, Abinadi and it strengthened my testimony of the gospel and the knowledge that the Lord's work must go forth no matter what.

The Book

Raquel has a secret. As the daughter of one of King Noah's priests, she enjoys a luxurious life and the admiration of powerful men. But her heart belongs to a commoner, a man with no earthly wealth but rich heavenly gifts. When King Noah demands that Raquel join his harem, she flees the only life she has known and marries her secret love. His name is Abinadi. The couple finds abundant joy in their community of believers and in their firstborn son. But when the Lord calls Abinadi as His prophet, their faith is tested to the outermost limits. Abinadi's commitment to the Lord requires them both to give their all-even unto death. Yet if Alma, the newest priest in King Noah's court, chooses to overcome his troubled past and cleave unto the truth, their sacrifice may yield rich fruit. With vivid detail and poignant emotion, this historical novel pulls readers into a fiery tale of love, courage, and faith that is difficult to put down and impossible to forget.

Once I started this book I couldn't put it down. I loved H.B. Moore's Out of Jerusalem series and I can't wait to read the next one in this series as well.
Abinadi can be purchased at Seagull Book, Deseret Book, and other bookstores.
Find out more about this Whitney Award winning author by visiting her wesite at

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Monday, November 3, 2008

Counting Your Blessings

I received a really neat little message in church yesterday and I've decided to post it because with everything we are dealing with in the world today, there are some things we need to remember.

"Said one well-known author: "Both abundance and lack of abundance exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend . . . when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that's present - love, health, family, friends, work, the joy of nature, and personal pursuits that bring us happiness--the wasteland of illusions falls away and we experience heaven on earth.""

It is so easy to focus on the negative things in our lives. Let us all make a conscious effort to look for the positive things that happen and rejoice in them, because we will find ourselves happier as we do so.

In the grand scheme of things, this part of life is so small, but this small moment is the most significant.

Suggested Reading

Book: At the Manger - The Stories of Those Who Were There Author: Peter V. Orullian Publisher: Descant Publishing

The Book
Few events are as celebrated, as transformational, as the birth of Jesus Christ. Modern stories abound of those who have been touched and changed by this blessed event. But what of those who stood at the manger the night Jesus was born? Who were they? What are their stories? At the Manger - The Story of Those Who Were There is a collection of inspirational tales which pose possible answers to these questions.

With moving narrative, At the Manger captures the imagination while lifting the spirit. Through great personal sacrifice, gifts are laid at the foot of the crib and the reciprocal treasures of liberation, peace, and love blossom in the hearts of the givers. Residents of Bethlehem and travelers from Rome alike, stand as witnesses in the stillness of the night to the profound, humble birth.

Learn of the struggles of the carpenter who built the manger, the midwife who helped Mary deliver the child, the origin of the swaddling the wrapped the babe, and other heart-warming stories. Through their own trials, those blessed to be present at the Nativity are woven into a fabric of mutual dependence and ultimate redemption.

I had the opportunity to sign next to Peter back in 2001 and was really impressed by him. He is a great guy and his book is an excellent collection of stores that I guarantee you will completely fall in love with.
At the Manger can be purchased at

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