Combatting Negativity

Combatting Negativity

Fires, racism, and violence across the nation are pulling at our attention. Coming directly off a pandemic, people are not in a very strong place emotionally and feel as though they cannot handle all that is being thrown at them. It is easy to get caught up in the...

Feel Like a Million Bucks

Feel Like a Million Bucks

I have a lot of friends I want to write about. They impacted my life for good when I needed it most. Many have migrated to their homes in different states of locations over the years, and though they are not forgotten, our connections are limited and communication is...

Meaningful or Mundane?

Meaningful or Mundane?

A Siberian husky was not at the top of my list of desired pets. If we were going to get a pet, I would have preferred a cat that slept on the couch twenty hours a day. But instead of a sedate feline, life brought me a puppy with more energy than an over-caffeinated...

Where Can I Turn For Peace?

Where Can I Turn For Peace?

Where can I turn for peace? Where is my solace When other sources cease to make me whole? When with a wounded heart, anger, or malice, I draw myself apart, Searching my soul?   The questions of the soul posed in Emma Lou Thayne’s stirring hymn "Where Can I Turn...

The Gift You Are to Me

The Gift You Are to Me

Some years ago, I was scanning through the internet (which can sometimes be a mind-numbing thing to do). You know how one link can lead to another and another... and another? The next thing you know, you’ve uncovered a gem, read it, and with a single click, it wanders...

The Parable of the Parachute: Choosing to Be Uplifted 

The Parable of the Parachute: Choosing to Be Uplifted 

When I met my husband in 1996, he was serving in the US Army as an Airborne Ranger in the 2nd battalion in Ft. Lewis, Washington. We like to say that Bryan had three lives while in the Army, not the customary nine. Nearly losing these lives guided him in his decision...

We Are Not Alone in Our Battles

We Are Not Alone in Our Battles

We are engaged in a fierce battle. Does that surprise you? It’s true. No, I am not talking about national security or the COVID-19 virus. Even with all the uproar in the homeland, it is much more serious than that. This clash is not just a life or death situation....

Remembering the Goodness of God

Remembering the Goodness of God

While studying the recent general conference talks, I was struck by something Elder Dale G. Renlund said about remembering the gifts of God. I love studying the talks after the fact, because I often learn things that I missed while listening to them live. Elder...

Word of Honor in Action

Word of Honor in Action

"What e'er thou art, act well thy part" is the motto of the Scotland Edinburgh Mission. The fabled stone discovered on an apartment building wall by President David O. McKay as a missionary in Stirling, Scotland stood proudly in the mission home's garden after the...

The Bioluminescent Parable: An Otherworldly Glow

The Bioluminescent Parable: An Otherworldly Glow

This weekend I was able to cross something amazing off of my bucket list. In Southern California this time of year, there can be seen occasional occurrences of bioluminescent waves that occur due to the microscopic phytoplankton that, when put in motion, create a...

Investments in Time

Investments in Time

This thing all things devours: Birds, beasts, trees, flowers; Gnaws iron, bites steel; Grinds hard stones to meal; Slays king, ruins town, And beats high mountain down.   What is it?   For those of you who know Tolkein’s story The Hobbit, you’d recognize...

God Is Not Dead, nor Doth He Sleep

God Is Not Dead, nor Doth He Sleep

The other day I woke up at 2:45 and couldn't sleep. So, I got up and left my room so I wouldn't disturb my wife.   I turned my phone on and checked my LinkedIn app and came across a beautiful post shared by my wonderful friend Lorena Acosta. Her post carried such...

I Was a Stranger

I Was a Stranger

The news was like a punch in the gut. For a moment, I could not breathe.   How could everything I cherish—everything I stand for—be marginalized, questioned, demeaned, overlooked, and disregarded? Those old familiar pains one feels in high school returned: “I’m...

Hosanna

Hosanna

Standing in my living room all by myself, I rose my hand in the air to shout Hosanna. It was a very uplifting and inspiring moment in my life. Though I was standing alone, I felt completely unified with the entire church. A quiet calm filled the room and my spirits...

Chocolate Cake vs. Pig Slop

Chocolate Cake vs. Pig Slop

My therapist is an actual angel.    I mean it. Like, step aside, Mother Teresa and Mr. Rogers — Charlotte’s* here. (*Name changed.)   As I wrote about back in February, I’ve been going through some traumatic events the last few months, so finding a good...

Shifting from Our Truth to Real Truth

Shifting from Our Truth to Real Truth

After driving the same route to seminary for months, I started noticing a specific charcoal-gray, lifted Toyota Tundra. It had red shocks and a hitch insert that caught my eye. That hitch insert became the truck's identifying characteristic to me.   It took me...

Fight for Your Children

Fight for Your Children

Motherhood is not a popularity contest. Sometimes it is just plain hard. I'm sort of a "win at all costs, take no prisoners" type of mom.  What I mean by that is I don't care if you like me, my job is to be Mom.  That is one of God's ultimate callings for me in life,...

How a Caterpillar Becomes a Butterfly

How a Caterpillar Becomes a Butterfly

“Tell me, sir, what is a butterfly?”   “It’s what you are meant to become. It flies with beautiful wings and joins the earth to heaven. It drinks only nectar from the flowers and carries the seeds of love from one flower to another. Without butterflies, the world...

Small Stuff?

Small Stuff?

Of course you have heard the comment “Don’t sweat the small stuff” before.   I am trying to apply that exhortation, but it is hard.   COVID-19 has affected millions. At this point, thousands are infected and the pandemic is causing death and suffering...

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