Saturday 30 September 2017

Turning on my Light . . .

Later today, as a worldwide church, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints will be tuning in to the first session  of our bi-annual General Conference.  For two weekends a year, we gather together as a body of believers to listen to our leaders speak to us.  You don't have to be a member of the church to get something out of it. There is spiritual nourishment and encouragement to be found for all God's children in their words. You can access their messages beginning at 10:00 am MST today (5 PM here in the UK) right here. 

Last weekend, as sisters in the church, we were priviledged to be able to hear special talks that had been prepared just for us, and they were wonderful.  I always love the Women's General Conference.  You can access those talks on that same page now!  The first speaker was Sister Sharon Eubank, first counselor in the General Relief Society Presidency.  Her talk was powerful and beautiful. In it she challenged us as Sisters to do as the prophets have counseled us . . . to turn on our lights, to be righteous, and to articulate our faith.


When she  spoke about being able to articulate our faith, I felt challenged and that it was something which I really needed to be able to do.  It is not enough to just blindly believe something, we also need to be able to express to others why we believe.  Today I will attempt to do just that! 

How do you feel about Jesus Christ? 
I love the Saviour with all my heart.  I have loved Him since I was a small child and my mother first taught me to pray. He is my exemplar in all things and my older brother, the first born of our Heavenly Father.  He has done for me what I could not do for myself. Because of Him, I will live again and can do so in the presence of my Heavenly Father if I so choose.  I know He is always there.  I feel Him walking beside me daily.  Since I have made the effort to walk closer by His side, I have felt his presence in my life daily, in profound and meaningful ways.  He is the best listener, and I know that no matter what I confide in him about, He will always love me, forever and no matter what.  His light carries me and helps me to rise above the flotsam of the world around me.  He is my guide and my redeemer.  I know this to be true, not because of anything I have been told, but because I have studied Him, I have conversed with Him, and I have felt His presence in my life, in a meaningful and profound way . . .  I have felt  the wonder of the change that comes about because of His presence. His Gospel gives me direction and purpose.

 Why do you stay in the Church? 
From the moment I first stepped into one of our chapels, way, way back, I felt as if I had found my spiritual home . . .  the place that my soul had been searching for.  The place where I felt comfortable in worshipping my Heavenly Father and comfortably at home with like-minded and like-feeling people.  But it is much deeper than that.  I could have that same feeling in many churches I suppose, that I was with like-minded and like-feeling people.  This church, however, sings the song of my heart and has answered all of my questions in very deep and meaningful ways. The church is not a building, but a family, a family of believers that truly love and care for our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ and for each other, but more importantly for the whole world and everyone in it.  I can't think of anywhere else I would rather be, and I have been to many, many churches.  This one is my home.  I am not a square peg trying to fit into a round hole anymore.  I fit in right here. 

Why do you believe the Book of Mormon is scripture?
I had been taught in the past that the Book of Mormon was an evil book, inspired by the Devil.  That I should not even touch it, or dare to look inside it because that is how "They get you."  This evil cult.  For years I believed this and was afraid to look inside its pages.  But then I got brave and I decided that I was't just going to take someone else's word for it, that I would see for myself if the horrible things I had been taught about it were true.  There was nothing inherently evil in it, nothing. If anything, it helped to expound and make the Bible clearer.  Everything in it pointed towards Jesus Christ, inspired me to want to have a closer relationship with Him and with my Heavenly Father, to be a better person, and to help my fellow man.  It is filled with beautiful and meaningful passages and thoughts.  
“But behold, I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of deliverance.” 
~1 Nephi 1:20

That is just one of them, and there are a bazillion more. I find comfort on its pages. No evil man could or would write this book.  Satan would not inspire a book whose sole purpose is to bring its readers into a closer relationship with Jesus Christ.  The Book of Mormon works hand in hand with the Bible to bring God's children into a closer relationship with Him.  I believe this. I know this. 

Where do you get your peace? 
No matter what happens in the world around me, I am at peace. I may not like what I see happening in the world, but ultimately I know in my heart . . . . that good will prevail. I know God has a plan for all His children and this is all a part of it. The Gospel brings me peace.  Knowing who I am.  Knowing my purpose, and why I am here.  Knowing where I am headed.  There is a special comfort that comes with finding the answers to these questions, and knowing the answers I find to be true. I feel daily the peace that comes from walking hand in hand with the Saviour, and knowing that He will  never lead me astray.  I know that no matter what life throws at me, I can rise above it, and death does not scare me. I will miss my loved ones, but ultimately I know we can and will be together again one day, and it will seem as if no time has passed in between.  Having a purpose brings me peace.  Knowing I am a child of God brings me peace. It is impossible to sink lower than the light of Christ can reach. I know this to be true because I have been there and He has lifted me up. 

Why does it matter that the prophet has something to say in 2017?
Look around you, at the things which are happening in the world.   Have we ever been in more need of a Prophet's voice than we are now?  And if you are a scriptorian, you know that they will only continue to get worse.  We are living in the last days, the latter days.  The signs are all around us. We need to heed a Prophet's voice now more than ever.  He will not, no never, ever lead us astray. 

How do you know he is a real prophet?
I have prayed and my heart has felt a special peace in the answers I have gotten about this. For thousands of years when God wanted to speak to His people, He raised up Prophets to bring them His words, His warnings, His inspiration. Does He love us in these modern days any less than He loved His children of old?  I say not.  I know not. He loves us every bit as much. He has not stopped speaking to His children, and the way that He does so is through the words of His prophets. In listening to conference talks and reading conference talks through the years, I have gained much from their words.  Guidance.  Inspiration. Answers. Advice on how to be a better wife, mother, daughter, friend, sister . . . neighbor.  I have been inspired to be better, do better, live better.  I have found peace and contentment for living, and for dying . . .  and help for my soul. 

“Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast.” ~Ether 12:4

And there you have it, however inadequate or verbose!  My answers to those questions.  I believe because I cannot "not" believe.  It is as simple and as complicated as that, and why I will be tuning into the General Conference later today, and tomorrow, and any other time I feel the need to be inspired.

That is the key. What have you got to lose?

Not a lot planned for today.  I am going to cut out some more bits of felt to continue with making the ornaments for my Grands and do a bit of cleaning, baking and cooking.  Then tonight we will sit down and listen/watch the first session of conference.   I think its pretty amazing that we no longer have to travel outside our homes to do so.  We can invite that special spirit which attends it right here into our own homes. We are supposed to get some pretty nasty weather over these next few days, with wind and rain, etc.  The ends of those hurricanes.  I am happy that I won't have to go out into it. That's September weather in the UK.  Wind and rain, interspersed with lovely, beautiful sunny days that warm our hearts and make us smile all the more for the preciousness of them! 


I used up some of our pears making this delicious Spiced Pear Loaf yesterday.  Mmm . . .  moist and delicious.  It is filled with cinnamon and cardamom and chopped toasted nuts. And its made with a mix of white and whole wheat flours.


I like it thinly sliced and spread with softened butter.  It's sooooo good.  Get the recipe here.

Have a great Saturday, no matter what you get up to.  Don't forget!

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And I do too! 


Friday 29 September 2017

My Friday Finds

A few of the things I find each week that inspire me to want to do better, to create, to become better, to read more, to watch, to just DO something! Things that delight, inspire, and bring me joy.  Maybe they will do the same thing for you!

A sweet beginning crochet baby blanket with an easy border from Melanie  Kham

Pretzel Broom Sticks.  What a cute idea, and healthy too.  From Smart School House

Christmas and Winter Printables. Not free, but not expensive either.  From Designer Trapped.  These would make great cards.  

Little Witches Budget Tea Party.  From Frog Prince Paperie

Mom Dot.  Creepy Mason Jar Tutorial.  Love this! It looks really easy to do.

Apple Cinnamon Crumb Cake.  This looks really tasty.  From Buttercream Bondie.  

How to harvest and roast Sunflower Seeds.  I've never known how to do this properly.  Simply Recipes.  


A very pretty crochet V Scarf from Naztazia.  And it has a video. 


Fab Food 4 All. Chocolate Melting Moments.  These look wonderful! Saw them on Instagram and was instantly hooked on wanting to make them.

 Litle Miss Stitcher. I love these.  Love the ice cream colours. Free pattern.

The Eat to Live Fridge, from  Hello Nutrition.  What a wonderful rainbow of nutrition! Not so sure I could do this, financially or otherwise, but there are some great tips there.

DIY Coconut Lime Foot Scrub. From Ma Nouvelle Mode.  

Smile Like You Mean It. Custom DIY Iron on Patches for jeans, using any material you want.  What a cute idea! Boys would love these super heroes ones.

Adventures in Making.  DIY aromatherapy cat nap eye pillows.  


Sew Me Some Stuff.  DIY Laptop Sleeves. 

Sleepover Pillowcase Tutorial from Lemon Squeezy Home.  

DIY Macaron Coin Purse from Handmadiya.  A complete tutorial. Cute! 

Fleece Ear Warmers.  At Second Street.  I love these.  I hate wearing hats, but these would keep your years warm in a nice way.  

Creative Homemaking.  DIY Phone Holder.  Simple.  

And here's another one.  Simple.  From Krokotak.  I think I like this one best of all. I could have used one of these the other day when I was doing my smoothie video.

Village Haberashery.  DIY Hot Water Bottle Cosy.  Love this.  It looks very simple as well. 

And those are my finds for this week.  I hope you found something to inspire you amongst them!

A thought to carry with you . . . 

.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *.˛.°Taking responsability for 
being exactly where you are,
gives you the power to be exactly 
where you want to be. 
~Unknown  .° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •

 In the kitchen today  . . .  Neptune's Dinner.  A delicious fish casserole which has a buttery cheese shortbread type of base, fresh cod and a creamy mushroom topping.  Delicious!

Have a fabulous Friday. Don't forget along the way of your day  . . . 

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and I do too!


Thursday 28 September 2017

My favourite things . . .

These are a few of my favourite things. Maybe some of them are yours too! 
I love fountain pens. I got my first one when I was about nine or ten years old.  I had saved up for one and bought it at the Rexall Drugs Store in downtown Gimli, Manitoba when we were living there. I remember I also bought a little bottle of turquoise ink.  The pen was orange and had a little bladder inside.  You dipped the nib into the ink bottle and squeezed the bladder to fill it.  I loved that pen. A couple of years ago I bought myself a fountain pen with my birthday money. It is a Parker Pen and was not cheap.  I have never been able to get it to work properly.  I cannot get the ink to flow down into the nib.  I guess I bought a dud. It is under warranty, but I can't find the receipt. That is me to a "T".  Not being able to find the receipt.  I need to get a better filing system.

I have found a new hair fetish.  I don't know what colour it is, but I am in love with it.  It is a type of brown, but with an almost pink tint here and there.  I love, LOVE it.  I know I have been talking about colouring my hair for a while now.  But  . . .  its a HUGE step.  I don't know  . . . 

I love potatoes, but I ADORE Pasta.  Any shape, with or without sauce.  Just plain buttered with salt and pepper, with a fresh tomato sauce, or a creamy sauce.  I adore pasta.  If I was to be presented with two bowls . . . one filled with buttered and seasoned boiled new potatoes and the other with buttered and seasoned pasta I would be hard pressed to make up my mind which one I would choose.  I think the pasta would win with a slight edge over the potatoes.  But my heart would want both.

I love anything that sparkles.  I am just like a crow. If it glitters I will be instantly attracted to it.  Diamonds, crystals, glitter, sequins . . .  I love them all. I was fascinated when we got to go to theSwaroski Museum/shop in Austria a few years back.  It was amazing . . . 

It was inside this mound  . . .  you went into it and it was filled with  one after the other exhibitions, all done in crystal . . . 
It was totally amazing.  I was mesmerised.  Of course it ended in their shop where you could buy their crystals.   I got some crystal tipped pencils.  I don't have one as they were gifts for other people.  if you are ever in the Austrian Tirol you need to visit it! 
Stained Glass.  I love Stained glass and would love to have a window panel in my home.  I saw one once that was put into a kind of frame with chains and hanging hooks, which enabled you to hang it from the top of your window frame . . .  oh how I would love something like that.  I am afraid I would sit and look at it all day.  I once looked into learning how to do stained glass, but it is a very expensive hobby.  The tools you need cost a lot and then there is the glass.  It is also very expensive.  I was destined to only admire it, but not create it.  If I ever win the lottery I am going to buy myself a panel to hang.

Old church home conversions. I love it when I see an old church which has been converted into a home, or an old brick school house made into a home . . . 
I think the interiors, if done right, are simply stunning . . .  there is that stained glass window thing of course  . . .  but the wood, gallery ceilings, etc.  All are so beautiful.  I don't find them creepy at all.  I also like barn conversions.  
It is sad of course that these buildings are no longer viable as churches, but I think its great that people are making homes out of them instead of pulling them down. 
 Luxurious makeup brushes.  Yes, I am a bit vain about makeup.  I put on my face every day, which is weird because I spent most of my life, right up to my 40's not wearing any makeup at all.  I wouldn't dream of going out of my house now without any.  I moisturise and use a good foundation.  Always L'Oreal.  Blush, eye liner, eyebrow pencil, mascara . . . just a simple routine.  Occasionally I have a no-makeup day where I only use moisturiser, but that is only when I am not going anywhere at all and I don't expect anyone to visit. 
I mostly read novels on my kindle now, and in bed but I do love the richness of a real book. The weight of it in your hands . . .  the smell of the paper . . . there is something about a real book that is really special.  I often see artists who use old books in their work, but to me I could not do that.  It would seem almost sacrilegious to destroy a book.  I could not do it I don't think . . . 
And when I am cooking from a book, I want it to be
a real one, not a digital one
that's just me.

I know most people store their photos online nowadays, but I love photo albums.  I love sitting down and going through them and seeing all the photographs, remembering good times, thinking about loved ones.  I think photo albums are special in a way that online albums will never be.  Plus, although they can be destroyed by water, light, or fire, they can't really disappear like online photo albums can. 
I have always loved playing the Sims.  I haven't played it for a long time now but have recently wanted to get back into it.  I would need to buy a newer version however as the one I have, I don't think would work on my laptop.  I really enjoyed it however.  I do play Township on my iPad and am on level 60 or so, but it is mostly just growing stuff and producing goods, shipping them off on trains and planes.  I want something a bit more challenging.  I am not one much for word games these days, although I do play scrabble and enjoy that.    I don't like war type of games either.  I don't like games that are too challenging, but I do want to be a bit challenged if that makes sense.
I like the GBBO.  Not sure I am entirely fond of the new lineup of hosts, cohosts etc.  I much preferred the old one, but they don't really make the show anyways.  The show is really about the bakers. I love watching them work and seeing how it turns out. People are always saying to me "You should go on the GBBO".  No thanks.  I am  a fairly decent baker, but I don't enjoy faffing about.  I am not into creating amazing bread sculptures or cakes, etc.  I simply enjoy baking nice cookies, cakes, pies, scones, etc. that don't require a lot of work but that taste amazing. I do like to watch others faffing about however and while I do I count my blessing that I will never have that stress!

And with that I will leave you with a thought for the other day . . .  I love those too . . .

.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *.˛.°Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and lean not on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him, 
and He shall direct your paths.
~Proverbs 3: 5-6  •。★★ 。* 。

Another of my favourite things  . . .  Proverbs. I love the Psalms also.

In The English Kitchen today  . . .  pasta with a Fresh Tomato, Garlic & Olive Sauce.  Quite simply delicious.

Have a wonderful Thursday. Hope its filled with some of your favourite things.  Don't forget along the way . . . 

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And I do too!