Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Come Unto Christ

"If you feel small and weak, please simply come unto Christ who makes weak things strong." - President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Good Works and Salvation

"Thinking that we can trade our good works for salvation is like buying a plane ticket and then supposing we own the airline." - President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Follow Him

"Whoever you are and whatever your past, remember this: It is not too late to make that same choice and follow Him."  - Elder Robert D. Hales

Monday, September 21, 2015

Sharing the Gospel

Sharing the gospel is a topic close to my heart and often on my mind these days. My parents left for their 18 months mission to Apia Samoa this weekend. My cousin Remi comes home from his mission to Texas later this week. So naturally, I'm thinking about missionary work.
I've never been very good at opening up and sharing my thoughts on the gospel. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the most personal thing in my life, and I find I have to trust someone before I will share my feelings on something so intimate. And yet, as followers of Christ we have been taught to "Feed my sheep" (John 21:17).
Each Sunday for the past few months I have had the opportunity to share my testimony with the young women at church. The more I share my testimony of the gospel, the more comfortable and open I get with sharing it. Still, I have a long way to go.
I wrote "Sharing the Gospel Through Social Media" for both people who are comfortable sharing and those who are more passive about sharing. While some people may have the desire to type out their testimony and share it for the world to see, others may be more comfortable sharing a nice thought or quote. I admit, I'm more the quote or thought kind of girl, although I wouldn't be surprised if people thought I was more forward than I am.
In less than two weeks, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will hold its semi-annual General Conference. It is a big event for us with speakers from the Church leadership around the world. (Not to mention good food and music as well.) Many people will share quotes and thoughts from the conference. Some will do it well, some will does it less well.
As we lead into conference I aim to share a quote or thought from past conferences each day, to help me warm up or prepare for conference. I hope you will enjoy them!
Consider this my own efforts at practicing what I preach (after all, I did suggest something like this in my book), and my own way of more openly sharing something very personal and special to me.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Operating Normally

Just getting ready for Star Wars to come out with a little cosplay, and rewatching all 6 films. Obviously.

In the past few weeks and months I have been making an effort to be more mindful of my own actions. To do this I take the time to review old blog posts, Facebook posts, Twitter, etc., and look for patterns and repeat behavior and emotions. (After all, blogging is the new journaling, or at least it was 10 years ago, right?)
If there is one thing I have caught on to it is my tendency to write out my busy-ness lists. I'm frequently a busy person, with 500 priorities at once, (followed by long dry spells), and tend to blog/share my list of current crazies.
I can't decide if this is good or bad. Should I keep doing it? I can't decide. I know why I do it. it's because that is what is on my mind- my 500 things to do that are outside the realm of normal, every day to-do. I rarely mention when life is average and normal. Or at least, I haven't done that in about 5 years.
Is the problem that I get into crazy states? Or is it a needed mental release to write it all out for my own sanity? I'm sure there is someone out there who thinks when I write it all out I'm bragging or something. I assure you, that's never it. If anything, I'm looking for commiseration.
This week I don't need commiseration. Things are completely crazy, but I'm loving every minute of it. I'm planning a wedding reception for a dear friend on Saturday. I haven't had a budget and time to plan an awesome party like this in a long time. This really is going to be a beautiful, memorable event. I can't wait!
My parents are leaving on their mission to Samoa in less than 2 weeks. Our family and household are in full mission prepping mode right now. It's an interesting mix of excitement, reluctance, urgency, and organization.
I'm the young women's organization president at our church/ward. That keeps me hopping right along. There's no end to all of the time, work, and effort that job requires.
I'm incredibly blessed to have some freelance work on my plate right now. It's all social media related, which has been a nice change of pace for me. Lately all I've done is writing/editing work, so it has been nice to re-submerge myself into social media. And it's just nice to have some work to do at all.
I'm still writing and working on various projects. I still have high hopes of starting a new business here in Roanoke sooner or later. (I just need about $20,000 more to make it happen.)
In other words, my life is in a constant change of flux and crazy, which is to say, all is operating normally.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

The One That Got Away

Once upon a time, a long time ago...
I was on a lunch date, nowhere near home, with a guy I was either dating at the time, or had recently been friend-zoned by. I can't remember if we were actively dating at that point in time or not. We were not near my home or his home; this part is significant. Out of nowhere, my date said, "Someone is looking at you. I think he's about to come up..." And sure enough, someone tapped me on the shoulder right then.
Much to my surprise, it was The One Who Got Away (TOWGA)several years earlier. Not only was it TOWGA, but he lived overseas. When I say this was incredibly unexpected, I really mean it! I hadn't seen him in years (because he lived overseas). How and what he was doing there nowhere near anything relevant, I have no idea. But nonetheless, he was there.
I was so surprised to see him that I managed to forget his name, plus my date's name. Seriously. Forgot both guys' names at the same time. TOWGA and I had known each other (very well) for about 13 years at that point. My date and I had been something undefined and still unclear for about a year.
In other words, I shouldn't have forgotten their names. But I did.
I was completely caught off-guard and went totally tongue-tied. The guys were left to introduce themselves to each other. It was awkward.
But then it got funny. Or at least in hindsight it was funny. At the time it was just awkward.
The two guys sized each other up and did some classic posturing and peacocking. I mostly stood there trying to figure out how and why TOWGA was in the middle of nothing relevant, and not in a foreign country. Conversation was briefly made, but not made well.
I finally took a deep breath and took a good look at TOWGA. He looked just the way I remembered him- always in need of a haircut 2 weeks ago, and wearing a slightly off-beat suit and shoes. He never wore typical, conservative suits. He gravitated more towards colors and the nutty professor look. (Not that he knew it.) I always liked his not traditional look. He wasn't much taller than me, blonde, and had a charming smile that always made you wonder what he was really up to.
It took all of two seconds to remember everything I ever liked about him. He and I technically never dated. But the feelings and emotions regarding him are as if I had. It's open conversation between us that we never dated, but always thought we would someday. I liked him, he had a girlfriend, he liked me, I had a boyfriend, etc. I dated his friends, he dated mine. We just never got the timing right. We've gone on a few dates, about 5 years apart usually. We have a wonderfully close and caring relationship. Like I said, he's The One Who Got Away. He's a good guy who will always hold a special place in my heart, and I wouldn't be embarrassed if he read this. (I'm pretty sure he already knows.)
But then I looked over at my actual lunch date. He was also wearing a slightly off-beat suit. In fact, both guys were wearing olive green tweed jackets over brown pants, with a tie. And they had on the same exact shoes- burgundy/mahogany loafers. They were the same height, with rakish blond hair.
And that's when it hit me.
I have a type.
I didn't know I had a type right until that very moment. 20+ years of dating and I had no idea I had a type. In fact, the similarities didn't end there. Both guys love sci-fi, tabletop/board gaming, can best anyone in fantasy trivia, and have an interesting political viewpoint.
The more I thought about it, the more I realized how many guys I've been involved with that meet that description. In fact, the overall majority sound exactly like that. There are a few odd exceptions, but for the most part, all my men have been sci-fi/fantasy nerds, loved board games, knew way too much about superheroes, and liked politics.
For a few days, maybe even weeks, that epiphany bothered me. Until one day when I realized, that wasn't a bad way to describe me too. I love sci-fi/fantasy, I rock at tabletop/board games, love ALL pop culture trivia (particularly superheroes), and love politics.
Is it so wrong that I tend to gravitate towards men I share these things in common with? I don't think so.
But here's my point-
It took me over 20 years of dating to realize I have a type. After 20 years of dating I still have a few things to learn. I haven't mastered dating yet, and probably never will. And that's all fine and good, but what does realizing I have a type mean for me?
Well, in my case, I took a step back and realized something. This type of guy is always fun, and I am always drawn to him. But after 15 years of finding myself with that kind of guy, maybe it's time to accept that while he's fun, the relationships never work out. Maybe I should be looking for something different? But then, is it my type that isn't working? Or is it something else? (And there are a lot of something elses it could be.)
It's something to think about. Which means that now, after 24 years of dating, I still have more to learn.

Oh, and for the record, I think maybe someday I will label the guy that was my lunch date as The Other One Who Got Away. Our relationship never really took off for a variety of reasons, but it had its moments. He was/is a great guy that I have few negative things to say about. Our friendship continues, although the romance is dead. But things continue to evolve there, and I'm not sure how I will label him in the future. It could go many ways. Only time will tell.
(The highlight of that crazy lunch though was watching him pretend not to be jealous, while being obviously, incredibly jealous. It made me realize that maybe he liked me more than he ever let on.)

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