Friday, February 11, 2011


I decided, today, to just find a bunch of quotes. I think they're cool! Enjoy.

If a fellow isn't thankful for what he's got, he isn't likely to be thankful for what he's going to get.  ~Frank A. Clark
I find that I have a really hard time with this concept. I don't seem to take enough time to sit and ponder the things I do have. I have health. I have a baby coming. I have had a really easy pregnancy. I have a lot of family that does love me. I don't really have any financial worries, I know that I will be taken care of. I am in school getting ready to get a good job. I have opprotunites for growth.
The unthankful heart... discovers no mercies; but let the thankful heart sweep through the day and, as the magnet finds the iron, so it will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings!  ~Henry Ward Beecher
I want to open my mind a little more and look for these mercies. They are everywhere.

Grace isn't a little prayer you chant before receiving a meal.  It's a way to live.  ~Attributed to Jacqueline WinspearOnce upon a time I looked up the word grace and wrote the definition on my mirror so I could look at it every day. I wanted to be gracefull. Maybe I should look at the meaning again so I can live by grace.

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving.  ~W.T. Purkiser
Gratitude is technically a noun, but it sure seems like a verb! I want to be more servicable.
Gratitude is a quality similar to electricity: it must be produced and discharged and used up in order to exist at all.  ~William Faulkner
I just thought this was an awsome visual!
Gratitude is the fairest blossom which springs from the soul.  ~Henry Ward Beecher

When eating bamboo sprouts, remember the man who planted them.  ~Chinese Proverb
It really is important to think of everyone and eveything that goes into making your day work together.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Just Dance!

I have a friend that I met in college that is doing a project that gives me hope.

Step By Step: Dance Across America

He is passionate about dancing. He wants to follow his dreams. I am thankful for anyone who follows dreams. A life without dreams is well... boring. And so my first note of gratitude is for those who find passion in life and do something about it. What would our country be without people of passion? Following dreams is what creates. And without creation, we only have destruction. Dreams = passion = creation. Creation is what makes the world work! Super happy about that. Granted, I am a sucker for dancing. So anything that deals with dancing, I'm in.

Next, my friend realizes that he has been given a gift by God. And he wants to use that gift to bless the lives of others. I am so thankful for people who realize and understand the gifts they have been given. Once you realize that its from God, you are so much more willing to do with that gift what He would want, which always blesses the lives of others. And isn't that the point of the blessings we have been given, to use them to bless others?

Third, he is trying to help others achieve their passions and dreams. A large part of his project is donated to searching for others who need help realizing their blessings. This is what I am most thankful about. The idea that there are, in this crazy, scary world, people who look for ways to bless others. There is a lot of scary today. There is a vast amount of selfishness and hate. But when you look, there is also a vast amount of service. There is hope in the world. There are people who want the best for others, not just themselves.

And to finish it off, I am thankful for dance! I have done almost every kind of dance out there. My heart will always belong to ballet. But I love pretty much all of it. I really love the kind of dancing you do by yourself when a great song comes on the radio. Maybe that's a silly thing to be thankful for. But its just one of the tender mercies that Heavenly Father has granted us. Along with flowers and music and libraries, dance is a blessing. God has put so many things on earth for us to find joy in. So, lets revel in those things. Lets really embrace them and show God how thankful we are to Him for the things He has provided for us.

Monday, January 17, 2011

A Full Heart

I don't usually do this, I tend to find it self-righteous and didactic. But I am so overwhelmed with gratitude for my Father in Heaven and for my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I have not made any posts in a while. Life has not done what I expected. I have felt more pain in the last month than I thought possible to live through. I have experienced more worry and heartache than I ever have before. But as I pause and ponder, for even those I am thankful.

There was a time in my life when I couldn't have felt those feelings at all. For many years I struggled with and eating disorder and self-injury. At those points in my life, I could not have even felt those feelings. I was so immersed in self-destruction and the attempt to not be human that I was not capable of feeling human. Now, while I hurt still, I also know that I can feel exquisite joy. I know what happiness is. And I am grateful for all feelings I am able to bear, because I can feel them.

At other points in my life I have been so entrenched in low self-esteem and depression that there is no way I would be alive right now. If this hurt had come at those points, I would have found more than ample reason to kill myself so thoroughly that no hospital would have helped. And while at times the only reason I've had for getting rid of suicidal thoughts was that of the baby I'm carrying, I have been able to overcome those thoughts and temptations which only two years ago would have bested me in a moment.

I am beyond grateful for the words given to us by the Latter-Day prophets. They speak of courage and hope. The words of the Lord, as said through the mouths of His servants, teach us how to endure to the end. They teach us of God's love, not only for ourselves, but for each person we come in contact with. How wonderful it is to be able to listen to those who have been set apart to teach us that which the Lord needs us to hear. And with that, how grateful I am for ears that can hear. Or eyes and a brain that can read. For the blessing of the Internet and television. How grateful I am that I don't have to wait for stone tablets to be hewn for us to maybe get the chance to read one day. But that I have access to both hard copy and virtual print at any time.

How grateful I am for the commandments and principles set out by God to guide us. God has told us how He wants us to live. It's no secret. There's nothing to guess. His way is the way to happiness. And happiness is eternal. How grateful I am for an eternal perspective on things. Elder Wirthlin's talk, "Come What May and Love It" is such a treasure. Life will be hard, but we can buck it up and love it. There is a a line I just read in a talk given by President Monson, "Be of Good Cheer" for which I am thankful. "This attitude [steadfastness and good cheer, keeping Christ as the center of life] is what will pull us through whatever comes our way. It will not remove our troubles from us but rather will enable us to face our challenges, to meet them head on, and to emerge victorious." (Brackets added). Not one of the brethren have told us life will be easy. They haven't said you will always be happy if you do this and this. They have told us that we will be able to learn and "emerge victorious" through our trials and heartache.

 And finally I am grateful for my marriage. It breaks my heart that it is over, as it seems. I will eternally love my husband. He is the man I choose eternity with. And while there were some really tough times and it didn't seem like we would ever be happy, I learned so much. I learned about me. I learned about God. I learned that people do not judge nearly as much I thought they did. I learned that life will go on. I am learning to trust in God. I am grateful for the happy times. I am grateful that I have been able to get through some of the rough times. I am grateful for what I have learned for the future. I am immeasurably greaful for the daughter that is to come out of this marriage. I am grateful for the blessing I had to go to the temple. The temple has been such a grounding for my life. It has given me focus and purpose. And without being able to get married, I doubt that I would have had such focus in my life. I am grateful for the progress I have been able to make because I was in a marriage. I am a very different person than I was two years ago. I am grateful that I have been able to experience love, not only getting, but the ability and opprotunity I've had to love another person.
Every day is not like this, mind you. I cry a lot still. I can't go into a grocery store without breaking down. I get angry. I blame. Trials of life have just begun to open. But I can see a little more easily the blessings that are connected to those trails. God loves you. God loves me. Christ atoned for our sins as well as our anguish. I truly have a testimony of that. And while it is hard to remember at all times. I do know it. I know that immense love God has for ALL of his children.

This is a link to President Monson's talk.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Soldiers' selfless acts should inspire at holidays
By Mike Scotti, Special to CNN
December 6, 2010 11:16 a.m. EST

I am continually amazed at stories like this one. The true hero of the war. The true hero of a nation is the one that will lay down his life for his brothers. I think the selfless acts of these soldiers are really just a telling of what all humans have inside of them. They are thrown into a situation where they must act. But I do believe that many of us, thrown into a situation in which we must act, will.

I am grateful for the soldiers who honor their patriotic duty. I am thankful for the selfless service of these men and women. Not only do they help fight for our freedoms, but they inspire us all to be better. Better brothers and sisters, better family members, better stewards of our country. The soldiers are more than the war, thank them and let them inspire you.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Good in the news

I think that I am going to try a new tactic this week with the blog. Rather than just pointing out the blessings I've seen in my life as they come, I am going to actively try to find good news. This is difficult. Newspapers, and subsequently online journalism, tends to print unhappy stuff. Sensationalism sells. But I did find this article on the New York Times website. You really should read the article.

New Meningitis Vaccine Brings Hope of Taming a Ravaging Illness in Africa
Published: December 4, 2010
The aim is for immunization to spread from Senegal to Ethiopia, saving an estimated 150,000 lives by 2015.

This is pretty huge. Isn't it amazing that there are people smart enough, endowed with wisdom and creativity, that can produce vaccinations. So many more lives are saved because of these technologies. We live in an amazing age. We live in a time when we can find cures. We can relive suffering. I am grateful for the people who work to keep people healthy. From nurses to pathologists, isn't it amazing what we can do as a species?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Blessings will show in time

Today I have to pause and thank my Heavenly Father for blessing my life with amazing people. There are three (or four, maybe five..) things in particular that have happened in the past 24 or so hours that have made my heart leap.

1) I have a hard time with feelings of rejection and loneliness, especially when I feel like I've tried really hard to make connections. So, there are some people that I get really frustrated with and pretty upset over. (Thing # 1 I'm trying to work on, being patient with people). I got an email yesterday, from someone close, that couldn't have come at a better time. I thank her for taking time to engage me. Short though it may have been, it asked about me and how I was doing. Which is something I've been needing so badly, to feel like I exists to people.
2) Again, I've been struggling with feelings of not being accepted in some realms. But I got a text from someone yesterday wanting to find some time to spend with each other before they moved away. It was a note from the right person at the right time.
3) Last night I suddenly realized just how unprepared for the childbirth process I am. I only have four more months and haven't even begun truly researching birthing methods other than medicated versus natural (which by they way I am planning natural, don't talk me out of it). And I just got completely overwhelmed! I have so many questions, many of them I can't ask family because I want to do things in a less traditional to them way, and they are as clueless as I am. But I put a post on Facebook about how overwhelmed I was and I got a flood of messages and responses giving me helpful advice. I don't really like Facebook, but when I got on this morning I started to cry from all the helpful responses. And I'm sure being pregnant wasn't at all the reason I started to cry.
4) I have one friend that I haven't know for long and really haven't spent much time with, but there was one of those soul sister type of connections. I haven't heard from her in a while, but she messaged me last night and made me feel so empowered. And while I am still in need of study and research, I don't feel nearly as overwhelmed. There are great people who are always around and wanting to help.
5) I kind of realized that my sister has been completely amazing my entire pregnancy. Other than she's lending me tons of stuff that I can't afford, she's been supportive and excited the whole time. She's always telling me what a cute baby bump I have. And she talks to her little niece in there. She answers as well she can all my stupid first time mom questions ("Is this supposed to hurt like this?" "Yes, Julia, you're fine..."). So I have much to be thankful for with her.
6) As part of my religious beliefs and practices we are encouraged to attend the temple whenever we can. Usually I try to go with my husband but he's been super busy with school and work and we haven't been able to find time together. And so I go alone. But today I was able to go with both my mom and dad. It was so nice and special to share that morning with them.

So moral of today's story... Be patient, and keep your eyes open. There are blessings all around us, waiting to descend at the right time. God knows what we need when we need it. We just need to be ready to receive it with gladness and a thankful heart. What have you seen God bless your life with recently?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Will Rogers

A few weeks ago I was hanging out with my mom and dad and my dad flipped to TMC and there was this movie on about the life of Will Rogers. I don't know much about him. I kind of knew who he was, but I usually get him confused with Roy Rogers... Other than that movie was absolutely eye opening about the way government works, it was also eye opening about human nature. If I could remember the name of the movie, I'd suggest it, all I remember is that the actor who played Will was his son. At the end of the movie they showed his most famous quote, "I never met a man I didn't like." I wanted to write about that concept, so I did a little more research about him and I found the entire quote that that bit is linked to. I found it on Wikipedia, so...

"I bet you if I had met him and had a chat with him, I would have found him a very interesting and human fellow, for I never yet met a man that I didn't like. When you meet people, no matter what opinion you might have formed about them beforehand, why, after you meet them and see their angle and their personality, why, you can see a lot of good in all of them.[27]
How amazing is that statement?  If you get to know them, you can see the good in them. Boy do I need to figure that concept out! I almost always jump to conclusions about people. I"m a big first impressions sort of person. You know what? There is so much more to a person than a first impression. And how much am I missing because I don't get to know them?

I am so grateful for people who have already learned things like that because I can learn from them! And if I take time to learn about people how much more am I going to be able to learn?