Saturday, March 31, 2012

Not surprising.....

It is not surprising to me that many of my answers to prayers comes through music. Music has always been such a big part of my life and my families life, that it makes sense to me that often times that is the way the Holy Ghost works with me!! As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have taken on the challenge that the Bishop gave our ward/congregation this last Sunday in Fast & Testimony meeting! He said that if we would write down specific worries, concerns, and/or challenges that we are facing at this time and that if we watch General Conference having prayed and read the scriptures we would find answers to our challenges. And when I told him I was going to do this with a list of 10 things -- he added for me.......that maybe I should add a number 11 - to have the courage to do what the answers are!! He told me this because he and I both know that I know what the answers are, but I'm sticking my head in the sand and hoping that the Bishop or the General Authorities are going to tell me something different or new.....then we both laughed because we knew this is never going to happen!! I just need to have the courage to do what needs to be done!!

So as I have watched the first of 4 sessions of General Conference it was not surprising that my strongest impressions came during the hymns/songs. Not that I didn't take lots of notes and get some surprising impressions of things that I needed to do.....I wrote them down whenever I got an impression from the Holy Ghost....

It touched me deeper than before when President Monson said that Heaven has directed the speakers of what they are to speak to us. I felt that personally.

As I was watching the woman doing the sign language for the hymn "You Can Make the Pathway Bright" and the expressions on her face, and the way she nodded in agreement that you "turn darkness into day as the shadows fly away....and your cares will all depart.... If there's sunshine in your heart today". I believed it in a way I never have before. And the Holy Ghost bore witness to me that my cares could go away, if I had sunshine once again in my heart.....because I will say that over the last month I have been more negative than positive and I don't like the negative Lois.......she is no fun to be around, and I'm sure my Savior and Heavenly Father feel that the negative Lois, does not focus on the many wonderful blessings that she receives daily!! And I do mean daily!! The Positive Lois is ready to come out from hiding again!! I would hate to ever appear ungrateful to my Savior and Heavenly Father!!

Then when the Choir sang - "Love is Spoken Here" that always gets to me....but more so with the questions/concerns/and challenges that I am going through right now....the answer came to me my family needs to see me kneeling more in prayer. I started crying and feeling the spirit tell me this as the choir sang the first line....."I see my mother kneeling with her family each day"!! Now, I pray, and my family knows I Pray, but one thing that I do need to get back to doing praying with Alan and that they see me, and know that I do believe that prayers are answered and that I do have an enduring faith -- that we will get through these challenges and trails and great blessing await us.

"How firm a foundation" is always a great hymn and happens to be my husbands favorite...but I loved hearing the promise more today than any other day....that "Fear not, I am with thee, oh be not afraid, for I am thy God and will STILL give thee aid." "I'll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand" How beautiful for me to remember that even if I have stumbled a little and wondered why this is taking so long for us to get over......HE STILL GIVES ME AID!!!

I also really loved Pres. Eyring's comment that God just wants us to be polished a little more. I know I could use some more polishing!

Then the closing hymn "Redeemer of Israel" two things happened, the line "The tokens already appear" Yes, Temple attendance, covenants made in the temple, and families can be together forever all came to me from this line......and then the person I was sitting next to me said....."I did not know your mother very well, but my mother did and she loved her and thought the world of her, and if you are even half of what she is.....well, that's really saying something isn't it!!" And I felt my mother's spirit with me at that moment and her love surrounded me and I knew that all was going to be o.k.......the veil was very thin for her and me today and I haven't felt that for awhile and I am so profoundly grateful to the Holy Ghost and my Heavenly Father, The Bishop, and my friend for helping that to happen for me today!!

And this was only the first session!! I really do pray for the courage to move forward and do all the answers (that I already know, yes, I do already know the answers but what a beautiful way to get confirmation that you are moving in the right direction) that I get today and tomorrow!!

A Sure Cure......

If you are looking for a sure cure of the "down in the dumps", or wondering why "Life has to be so hard" or lacking patience with the trial you are currently facing and wondering why you are still going through it even though you are sure, you have learned all you are suppose to learn (yes, the 3rd one is me). Watch the movie "Soul Surfer". We own it and Alan loves to watch it because of her faith in Jesus Christ, and its a true story, and the way that she is not willing to give up, etc., etc..... so I have seen it many times, but....

In getting spiritually ready for answers to my questions and concerns that I have for this upcoming General Conference for our church I feel that it was no accident that last night while Alan was out doing splits with the missionaries, Aileen and I came across this movie while we were watching TV - so we watched it..... and was spiritually fed even before I started listening to our prophets and apostles today!!

I really hope that I can explain in words how this just made me admit once again, there are so many more people with bigger problems out there then me! And that me and my family are so truly blessed. That my Savior is there to ease my burdens, that my Heavenly Father is aware of all that me or any of us are enduring.....and that it is for our own good, and if we take on these challenges and trials and grow in faith and pass through them with courage and even more faith in our Savior, Jesus Christ then great miracles and blessings do come!!!

Picture from:

If you would like to see the real "Soul Surfer" go here !! Thank you Bethany, for your example of enduring through trials and challenges. In the behind the scenes extra features to this movie the director said that the family wanted to be sure that they were accurate with two aspects of this movie....that their religious belief's had to be portrayed accurately and the surfing!! I love that!

And I have to say..... what a way to start General Conference weekend!!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

"A Thousand Words".....

There has been so much going on that I have not had time to tell you the fun movie I saw several weeks ago....early March! One of my friends (Becky) who babysits her grandson, got Wednesday of Spring Break off, because the other grandma was off and wanted to watch the cute little she called me and said, "I'm available, if you want to go to a movie?" Well, you can guess what my answer was!! Duh!! So I called our other gal pal (MaryAnn)that we go out with and we all went to see the movie "A Thousand Words". And I have to say it was pretty darn good! I think that some of these actors are wanting to make movies that they are not embarrassed for their children to see.....I know that was the case with Johnny Depp when he made the movie "Neverland" which was brilliant by the way, he said in interviews that he wanted to make movies that his Children could see.

So we enjoyed the message of the movie, went shopping and had a great Wednesday afternoon and we were visiting teaching by the way it was fun, fun, fun!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Surprising the Doctor!!

Today is Doctor Malofsky's birthday!! It's always such a challenge. I mean, what do you get a Boss that pretty much can get himself anything he wants..........BUT - he mentioned last week when we were talking about "The Hunger Games" movies and books that he wanted to get the books and see the movie because he had heard so much about them and I of course told him that I loved them and the movie and agreed that he should start the books!!

So this morning when he came into the office he found on his desk, from me, the 1st Hunger Games book and a gift card to AMC theatres to see the movie!! He was surprised and really excited and started asking all kinds of questions!!

FINALLY, it was so fun to give him something that I actually knew he wanted!! Yay!!

Happy Birthday Dr. Malofsky.......and many more!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Thank you Shutterfly - Moab Family Reunion 2008

Click here to view this photo book larger

Shutterfly photo books offer a wide range of artful designs and embellishments to choose from.

Thanks to Shutterfly and the coupon they sent me - I was able to finally make this book of the 2008 Brown family reunion that Alan and I were in charge of. Now I have the pictures saved somewhere permanent and have great memories at my fingertips! For free!!

Thank you Shutterfly!!!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

I love it when I get feedback on my Gospel Doctrine Sunday School Lessons!

It may sound like I'm bragging.....I hope that I am not, but I do like to remember notes, letters, and emails that people have sent to me that mean a great deal. And since I turn my blog into my personal history journals every year.....I want to keep this email that was sent to me this past week!!

".....I enjoyed your Gospel Doctrine lesson Sunday very much, especially since it dovetailed so beautifully with my RS lesson. And you were so right that your story of Moses & Jethro fit the content of the George Albert Smith lesson beautifully.

I should also tell you that I do use that spiral notebook you gave us back when you first started teaching Gospel Doctrine. I probably don't record things in it nearly as much as I should, but the latest thing I did in it was just today -- I trimmed the handout you gave us with "Jacob's tests on riches" down so it would fit & glue-sticked it onto the next free page in the notebook. Knowing it is there, I'm going to try to remember to refer to it from time to time to remind myself of the "tests." They are a very good summary of what Jacob taught, & I need to be reminded of them. I've done this same thing with several of your handouts because I thought the info on them was too important to throw away.

Love & thanks,

Focus on the positive.....

Many of you may not know or may have forgotten but Alan has been unemployed since last July!! It has been a very long time. And I would be lying if I didn't say that I am worried. But I try to always focus on the positive and the many blessings that we have been blessed always too many to count!! But you add this to the last few years that have been laced with stress, you might understand how I might finally be getting tired!! We had a big wedding, 2 weeks later my mother dies, 5 months later my father is having open heart surgery and really almost lost him, If we hadn't been living together and I hadn't heard the crash of him falling.... my Dad getting remarried, quickly, buying a house moving my Dad out and trying to dispose of a lifetime of furniture and things from my parents life as my Dad moved on to another life, Anne Marie having blood clots in her lungs and being rushed to the emergency room and me here in Texas and her in Utah, Allison having a miscarriage, and Alan loosing his job......and me being the person working - to just name a few things..... it might not surprise you that.....

Last Fast & Testimony meeting I got up and cried, I know, I have such a great life there is nothing to cry about...but I did. I used the old saying that I always like to say (because my mother did) that "there is no rest for the wicked!!" Our Elder's Quorum President heard me say that once and said that his mother or grandmother I can't remember which, use to add - and I'm really tired!! That was the perfect way I was feeling this day "There is no rest for the wicked, but I am really tired!!" I also remembered and bore testimony to the fact that I have a loving Heavenly Father who is aware of me and my family, that I have a Savior who will carry me through this, that I am thankful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and that we have a living Prophet who gives us modern day revelation, our Bishopric, the Book of Mormon, etc... So it was a positive testimony, but I had shared more of what I was feeling then I had in the past.

We (Alan & I) are friends with Greg and MaryAnn Stephens. We have double dated, gone to parties together etc... Greg is also in the Stake Presidency. I really love when he comes to my Gospel Doctrine classes and the discussions we can have because of his knowledge of the scriptures!!

So it meant a great deal to me to receive this email from him.....

"Sis. Brown,

I haven't been able to stop thinking about you since your testimony this morning. I remember my father used to use that same phrase when things got rough, "No rest for the wicked." Then my Mom would correct him and tell him that the right saying was "No rest for the weary," and she would then say "I'm too tired to be wicked!"

I just wanted to let you know that I know, from personal experience with some rough times, that God is watching over you, and that as he told Jeremiah, He has a plan for you, and the plan is designed to bring you peace, not bad things. It may take awhile to see the end from the beginning and middle, but God knows the end from the beginning, and loves you. And so do we!
Pres. Stephens"

So, even though, I always try to be positive, and always show my gratitude to my Heavenly Father for all the blessing we have.....and they ARE MANY!!! Sometimes we all have to share -- "I'm too tired to be wicked".

"May the odds be ever in your favor"

Yes, I was one of those crazy women with their girlfriends at the midnight showing of "The Hunger Games" Thursday night at Midnight!! It was so great everything that I hoped it would be!! So I was really excited for Alan to see it, because he has read the books 3 times at least and was looking forward to our date Friday at the matinee as soon as I got off work on Friday to go!! But the camera moved and dashed about so quickly that it made him sick!! So he was really disappointed and therefore I was really sad......I was so excited he was going to see it and I knew he was going to love it.....and then he didn't. And because he was telling me the screen is jumping around so quick from picture to picture etc... I'm getting sick, almost ready to throw up...that then I got nauseous too!! I hadn't noticed it the night I'm kind of anxious to go again and see if it bothers me or not....and Alan said he wanted to try again and see if he knows going in, that that is how its going to be, if it isn't better for him. So I was so excited, and then so sad for Alan!!

Allison and John went Saturday and called me after and said that they loved it too!! Anne Marie warned me not to talk to her about it at all until she goes and sees it after the mad rush we have not!! She knows me too well, I couldn't help myself if we did talk!!

Me at the shower with the yummy treats - mason jars with fruit & yogart parfaits and cute cupcakes etc... so fun!

Saturday we had a baby shower for our Primary President who has 2 boys and is now having her 1st girl!! we had a hoot telling stories and laughing and just getting to visit in a way that you don't really get to do at church on Sundays! I'm very excited for her!!

Caitlin Thompson, Primary President in Ft. Worth 3rd Ward and expecting mother!!

Tonight is a baptism of a young lady that is a friend of one of my seminary students! So I will be attending that. So it really has been a great weekend!!

Movie, party, and baptism!! Who could ask for more!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Paint me happy!!!

I am so happy DWTS's is back and wow oh wow was tonight a great 1st night. I don't think there has ever been so much talent and so many good dances on the first night ever!!

And Gladys Knight was a showstopper!! see this video of her first dance on I have not voted since Emmit Smith and Donny Osmond, in fact those where the only two times I did, but I voted tonight for Gladys!! It was too much fun.

It's funny the things that can bring us such joy!! There are many stars tonight that I was happy did such a good job, but once I saw Gladys Knight that was it for me

Its going to be exciting to see what happens in the weeks ahead!

photo by DWTS

Monday, March 19, 2012

Weekend update!!

I'm so tired I can't even come up with a creative title for this post! This last weekend was a great weekend. I was so busy with the Stake Musical that I was in that I did not even get to think about or celebrate St. Patrick's day!! So that kind of went by with no fanfare.....and no care packages to the kiddos that live out of state (Sorry girls and John) but the Stake Musical performances went well especially since I was having trouble memorizing my lines....I've decided that 52 may be too old to get back into doing plays/musicals - lol!! I don't remember having trouble with that when I was younger!

Alan helped with two Eagle Projects this week!! The thing that is so amazing about this is, he has really been struggling with feet/ankle/gout problems where it is really hard for him to walk, and he delivered and picked up sacks of food in the neighborhood this week for one eagle project and went and helped plant trees on Saturday for the other. He was there supporting those boys even though, it was not easy for him. I really love this about him so much!!

Sunday we had fun in Gospel Doctrine and the lesson went well, so it really was a great weekend!!

Aileen came to Friday night's performance of the Stake Musical with Alan, and I was so exciting to see her. She came right up to me gave me a kiss, then grabbed her Dad's hand and pushed him out the door!! She was done! Too funny! Maybe that was all the longer she could be quiet, because I did not hear a peep out of her during the performance. Or, it could have been that Alan promised that if she was good, she could go to McDonald's afterwards!! Funny!

The picture is of the Cast of the "Ten Virgins, our director, and the Stake Relief Society Presidency in front.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The New Testament Ten Virgins - its a musical

Our Stake/Church is putting on the short theatrical musical "The Ten Virgins". It has been fun to be in a cast has been YEARS since I have been in a cast, on stage, and able to sing my heart out!! It has also been really fun to meet new women in our Stake/church. And I have tried not to be too much of a Diva, but I have asked questions and made a few suggestions, lol! I wouldn't be me, if I didn't lol!! I do love my song that I get to was incredibly low and I do not sing low very well....but when we raised a lot of the song up an octave, I was such a happy camper!! I'm hoping that my family and friends will be able to come, but even if they don't, this has been a wonderful experience and I am so glad to be able to be apart of it!!

and the winner is......

Striped Graduation Announcement

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Monday, March 12, 2012

Weekend update!

Well, I finally found someone to go to see "The Artist" with me!! I had wanted to see it before the Oscars and really wanted to see it after the Oscars!! I could not persuade my husband at all, he was not interested, so my girlfriends went with me to see it late last Thursday night and we were the only ones in the theatre, so even though the movie wasn't a talkie!!! We were!! lol! It was very well done and I am glad I got to see it and it was more fun to be in the theatre all by ourselves so it didn't matter if we made comments about parts of the movie or not!!

Then, Friday night was the March Birthday's family dinner!! We have a LOT of March birthday's!! Aileen was happy to get to go out to eat and celebrate again, and it is always nice to see extended family!! Uncle Julio's is always good!

Saturday, was one of the last rehearsals for a musical performance our Stake is putting on of the Ten Virgins so that was most of my day with some coming home and working on my lines more, and my Sunday School lesson. Two more rehearsals and then 2 performances next weekend!!

And Sunday is always awesome!! We had wonderful talks and every one's lessons went well, including mine! Yay!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Vote for which Graduation announcement you like best

I have been playing around with graduation announcements for John and Allison. Please vote for which one you like the best!!

2012 Graduation

Striped Graduation Announcement
Graduation announcements and invitations by Shutterfly.
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2012 Graduation v2

Letter Graduation Announcement
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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Going out with my honey bunny!!

Today we went to the best movie we have seen in a long time -- Dr. Seuss's "The Lorax" in 3D. We normally are not 3D fans, but if there was ever a movie to see it 3D - this was it!!

It was perfect and we loved the music......Can you say "Broadway Musical" It would not surprise me if that didn't follow sooner or later!

And we loved how closely it stuck to the book -- it didn't rhyme as much as Dr. Seuss always does but it was fabulous!!

What a fun way to make a "green" statement! And Alan commented that "see, you don't have to have all that language, violence, and sex that most movie makers think you have to have now to have a great movie! You can just have a great clean family movie!" I agree, and I wish Hollywood would realize that more.

Dr. Seuss will never go out of style!!

Aileen has special Visiting Teachers!!

For Aileen's birthday her visiting teachers, Magdalena Peterson and Mirta Brown, came buy with a wide assortment of surprised to wish her a happy Birthday!!

Aileen with her Visiting Teachers - Mirta Brown, and Magdalena Peterson.

Aileen's Birthday memories 2012

This is me patiently waiting to begin opening my presents!!

Opening the DVD's that my Mom and Dad gave me. Plus I read Grandma and Grandpa Jackson's card with their check!! Yay, time to go shopping!!

Opening more presents, but oops - Mom's pointing the camera at me so I have to stop and pose for the picture!!

This "Puss & Boots" DVD I had to hide from Uncle George because he was going to "borrow" it!! The DVD and a cute bunny was from Aunt Tootie and my cousins Lauren and Taylor!

My Cousin Steven and his family Teresa, Mariam, and Dallin gave me the Barbie DVD's because Mariam feels that I need more than just Disney Movies!! Mariam and Dallin also made me hand drawn cards!!

Grandma Barbara and Grandpa Clay gave me a princess picture frame, a princess drinking glass that flashes lights and twinkles when I push a button, and a princess balloon!! Which is still floating in my room!!

Steve, Teresa, Mariam, and Dallin Brown - came all the way from Allen, Texas to celebrate my special day with me!!

Grandpa and I celebrated our birthdays together!! And this chocolate cake with chocolate mouse filling and chocolate frosting was just what Grandpa loves!! CHOCOLATE!!!

Then Grandpa started dancing with Grandma Barbara!! Too cute!

Uncle George, and Tytan game by later but missed pictures (they may have planned it that way) and Uncle David came for a few minutes to wish Grandpa and me a happy Birthday!!

John and Allison called me on my Birthday, Anne Marie called, and Grandma (Brown) Jackson called!! It was a great birthday weekend!

Monday, March 5, 2012

The birthday girl!!!

Grandpa's birthday was Saturday and Aileen's is today, so on Saturday night we celebrated both!! So I took a picture of the birthday kids together!!

It is so hard for me to believe that Aileen is 27!! It feels like yesterday that she was my cute little she is my beautiful grown up girl.

Aileen is a gift from my Heavenly Father that I am so grateful for! I'm grateful that he trusted me and our family to take care of her, love her, and learn from her!! And I trust that when the Savior comes again, Aileen and I will get to talk about and remember so many things!!

She is so fun to have around now that we are empty-nesters, we don't have to be so lonely!! And I think she likes being the center of our life.....but she misses her sisters and John!!

She is showing more and more of her brilliance and personality as time goes by, she ran laughing away from her Dad when he was trying to keep her from getting into dinner before he was ready for her. Dad could not catch her!! so funny!!

She knows how to get her message across even without words!! And the cutest thing lately is sometimes she will come downstairs late at night and stand at our bedroom door, like she is wanting to come in and get in bed with us but not sure how to let us know.....but all we have to say is "Aileen do you want to sleep with us tonight and she comes right in and gets in the bed and snuggles down and goes right to sleep!! Those have been some of my most precious moments of late.

When her sisters and John called to say happy birthday, she listened intently on the phone and never pushed it away or got tired of hearing their voices!! Same with Grandma Brown when she called she didn't want the call to stop!! And she loves Grandma Barbara and Grandpa Clay and always acts so grown up around them. I know that she has special conversations with Grandpa Brown and Grandma Clay who I know visit and look after her from the other side!!

We love you Aileen!! So happy you are in our life!! It would not be the same without you!!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Baptism!

Nothin' could be grander than to be in Fort Worth, Texas for a Baptism!! MaryAnn Stephens and I Visit Teach a young woman by the name of Lacy Lassiter! Her husband Derrick has been taking the discussions from the missionaries and was Baptized today!! What a happy day for that little family and for our Ward!!

A tradition that we just can't stop......

Traditionally every year for Ashley's birthday this same group of ladies has gotten together for Ashley Myers' birthday to celebrate, and even though she has moved away and is no longer in our ward, we just can't seem to stop getting together!! yay!! So we went to Logan's for lunch on Friday afternoon and showered Ashley with gifts, laughed, talked, and laughed some more until we all had to stop!! But it was a great time and a tradition that I hope we never st0p!!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Allison's first theatre production as a teacher!!!

Tonight is final dress rehearsal at Springville High School. "Curious Savage"

And tomorrow, Friday, is opening night to Allison's first theatre production as a high school theatre teacher!! It makes me think of Allison's favorite theatre teacher Mr. Parker! I think he would be proud to know that she was following in his footsteps! Of course she had other theatre teachers as well that played a big role in her High School career, Mr. Ingram, Mr. Harrington. And I'm getting really sentimental about this because in a month we will be headed out to BYU for Allison and John's graduation from BYU!! Amazing!

Break-a-leg sweetie and to all your cast and crew!! Good Show!!

Her Dad and I did send the traditional flowers to be delivered to her. We couldn't be there in person, so our thoughts and hearts will be there instead!!

John and Anne Marie are going to the show on Saturday!! Can't wait to hear all about it and I love that my girls and guy, always support each other!!

You make a parent proud!!