Would you like to translate this into another language?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

What's Up With the Hearts?!

For #1's Valentine's package this past February, I asked people to write messages to her, and I glued them onto hearts that I cut out of cute paper. The paper has been sitting on a shelf high up in my closet ever since. It has gone untouched.

Last week, I was having a really hard time feeling motivated toward anything. It may just have to do with the idea that it's summer, and I'm adjusting to a new way of doing things, but I knew I had to do some major housework and had to get the kids involved.

I created a list and pulled the kids in, and once things got moving, we were in good shape.

I started in on my jobs. I went into my room to fold some laundry. When I turned to walk back out, there was a tiny heart cut from the cute paper on my bedroom floor.

I went into the laundry room to throw another load in, and as I walked back into the bedroom, there in the hall just outside my bedroom was another heart.

I went into the bathroom to scour the toilet. I came back out, and guess what….Yep, yet another heart.

This actually went on until there were five of them. Weird!

As I shared in my last post, I'm trying to make prayer figure more and more into my daily struggles. I'd been up for a couple hours this morning and decided that prayer was necessary. I went to my closet and knelt in a place where I usually don't. Before I closed my eyes, I glanced in front of my nose, and there were three tiny paper hearts.

So funny! I guess someone's trying to show me some love. HaHa!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Gratitude Brings Happiness--or So They Say

I ran across this video today:

So, falling in line with what Mr. Anchor shares here, I would like to offer my three gratitudes for today….


I never really knew what Mission Presidents and their wives did before #1's mission. I mean, I knew what I saw of my Mission Presidents and their wives, but really I only caught a glimpse of them from time to time when there was a Zone or Sisters Conference. My last area was the area that contained the mission home. It was about the time our new Mission President arrived to the mission. Ironically, #1 has just been transferred to the, guess where….Yes, the mission home area, and guess what….Yes, the new Mission President is just about to arrive.

I must make it public here that I am DEEPLY grateful to #1's Mission President and his wife. They have served for the past three years. They have sacrificed and missed out on things in their own children's lives to bless the lives of a bunch of strangers' kids--one of those being my own.

They have relocated missionaries to better, safer apartments. They welcomed a whole bunch of new missionaries every six weeks or so and helped them acclimate to their new surroundings and mission life. They have said good-bye to missionaries as they've ended their service and returned home. They took in missionaries from the typhoon-stricken Tacloban Mission--found them housing and companions and saw to many of their basic needs which were left behind. They then saw them return to their former mission once it reopened. They have supplied temporal and spiritual support for hundreds of young people.

I feel that I owe these people so much. My gratitude just isn't nearly enough. It will be sad to see them go. President and Sister Querido, the Hess family is truly thankful to you and appreciates your tireless sacrifice and prayers for our daughter.


I have been desperately lacking in motivation lately. I have shared this before, but the whole brushing teeth while eating Oreos thing is just so MY LIFE! UGH! I clean my house, and within five minutes, it's a mess. I remind. I nag. I do everything but….No, I do…I holler. I just want a clean, orderly house. I know this doesn't sound like gratitude, but wait….

I've been hearing a lot lately, just by chance (yah, right) about people who couldn't handle life and decided to pray. Funny thing is that I tried it this morning. Whenever something seemed like too much, I'd get on my knees.

It wasn't until AFTER I tried this that I ran across two things that solidified my need to do this. First, there was a video about addiction recovery about a young man who had terrible trouble with drugs. It talked about his struggle and his way back--prayer was VITAL. It was his turning point. I'll have to see if I can find the video to share here.

Second was this:

I didn't go from zero motivation to 60 in 3 seconds or less, but I was a bit more motivated than I've been in the most recent past--I got most of my bedroom closet cleaned out today and one bag ready to donate. I figure that requires some amount of motivation. I also prayed more than usual.

I am grateful for prayer. I'm glad to know that there's a greater power that I can tap into when I need it. I plan on tapping in much more often than usual in the coming days.


I am grateful that kids grow up. I walked through Target yesterday and walked past the little tiny baby clothes. For just one moment, I missed my little babies, but not enough to want one. I'm also not wishing away their childhood--I will miss these phases too when they've grown up.

Today, though, we went to the dollar movies and watched Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. This is the first year in a long time when I've been able to sit through an entire movie without my children dancing in the aisles. It gave me great hope that maybe someday ]they will grow to the point where I will have the clean house that I so desire. Maybe, soon enough, I'll be ready to stop eating Oreos. I am grateful for that little glimmer of hope.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

New and Improved Definition of My Favorite Word

I have a favorite word. It will probably be my favorite until the day I die. I know I've written about it before, but I just found a wonderful definition of it. I'm leaving it here because I don't want to lose this meaning.....

The word is "sunao." It is a Japanese word and no English equivalent does it service.

Here is the meaning I found today. This was a comment under the definition on an online Japanese-English dictionary where sunao had been defined as "meek, docile, or honest, frank.(すなお)素直." Like I said, these words do not do this justice. They are merely a scratch on the surface. Here is the comment:

"While I do accept the usual definition of obedience and submission (to a higher authority), I think there's more to it than that: it's the radical acceptance of things as they are, not as we would like them to be, and an ability to accept valid criticism with grace and humility, and to change oneself or one's mind accordingly, putting one's ego aside. It's the opposite of 'recalcitrant', really." (https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20070706182819AAtf3kJ)

YES! This word, sunao, speaks to my heart. It is all I aspire to be!

When the tsunami happened in Japan, you will recall, the Japanese didn't sit around feeling sorry for themselves. They took their situation for what it was and got to work. For the most part, as I know there are exceptions to every rule, they didn't and don't pit themselves against God or nature as we American rebels do. They just accept and move on....Accepting life for what is given, being grateful for what they have, and working to make the best of it for themselves and everyone around them....

That's what I want to be. I wish I could truly define this word as it has lodged itself in my heart, but that is the best I can do for now.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

WOAH! Such a HUGE Promise!

I read this this morning, and as I delved into it more deeply, I was amazed at the message I ended up taking away from it....

"And it shall come to pass, that if the Gentiles shall hearken unto the Lamb of God in that day that he shall manifest himself unto them in word, and also in power, in very deed, unto the taking away of their stumbling blocks--" (1 Nephi 14:1).

So, anyone who's not of the house of Judah is a Gentile, right? I am not of the house of Judah, so this applies to me and many of the rest of us, right?

"Hearken" is defined as "to listen" or "to hear," but here's the Julie definition: "to listen and obediently do something about what you've heard." In the case of this scripture, we're hearkening to the words of Christ.

"That day" means now. So, if we listen and follow the words of Christ in these days....

WAIT!....I forgot THE most important word in this scripture, but I find I keep using it over and over again...."IF!"

I figure "if" emphasizes our God-given right to choose. I LOVE that He desires our growth and development by giving us the ability to make decisions for ourselves. He trusts that we will eventually figure it out after a series of mistakes and that we have the ability within us to learn and redirect our own course. He also grants us fresh starts and hope.

I'm learning that those times when our choices are limited were not brought about by God, but we can be assured that satan had a hand in them at some point along the way. 

God is all about freedom and joy. satan's all about bondage and misery.

Okay, back to the topic at hand....

Also, with an "if," there is always a "then," right? Case in point (couldn't resist the pun, sorry):

Often in the scriptures it's a blessing or curse that follows. In this case, it's asking us to do something that's good, so a consequent blessing follows.....

IF we will listen to and obey the teachings taught by Jesus Christ, He will manifest--Wait! There's a word you don't see everyday....

Manifest: readily perceived by the eye or the understanding; evident; obvious; apparent; plain.

So this is telling me that Christ will make Himself obvious to me "in word, and also in power, in very deed, unto the taking away of" the things that cause me to stumble--my doubts? My fears? My past mistakes? The things others have done to me? Anything negative that's in my way?

Yes! ALL of my barriers--erased. He desires my success!

I don't know how you feel about that, but to me, that is a hugely awesome scripture with an amazing promise!

I try to follow but fall often. I try to get back in place and know that when I do, I receive help that I can't see with my eyes but only feel with my heart. 

I also know that there have been experiences in my life where this has come to pass--a mission, a trip to Japan, shipping school supplies to the Philippines; heck, raising seven kids, for that matter--all seem/seemed impossible to me, but there is no question whose power was/is made apparent through these kinds of challenges if I hearken.

Yes, I love this scripture! I often write "GOAL" in the margin of my scriptures when I find verses such as this.

This is definitely something to strive for. I feel that without this as a guide, life would be wasted. Why do what I can do alone when I can do what He will do with me? 

Can I just reiterate....I ADORE the Book of Mormon! How does anyone live without it? It brings me such huge joy daily. When I go without, I can tell the difference and so can others around me. It brings me closer to God, and for that, I LOVE it!

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