Friday, December 2, 2011

Five Things For Friday, 23rd Edition


I know I probably shouldn't admit this... but I really enjoy staying home from church with a newborn. Don't get me wrong, I love going to church and miss attending the meetings but it is also really sweet to have a few hours where all my attention can be devoted to my new little boy. I love snuggling up on the couch with him to read my scriptures and listen to music knowing that there isn't anyone who needs my time more. We've had some really sweet moments together the last couple of Sundays. I know that they can't last forever ( we did go to Sacrament meeting last week) but I am sure going to miss these mommy-baby dates when they are over!

I enjoyed this video of Shannon from The Redheaded Hostess teaching about how she does her scripture journals. It was fun to get to hear how she got started and what she has learned over the years from keeping a scripture journal. I loved how she stressed the need for women to keep a record of their spiritual insights for their children and grandchildren. Imagine how incredible it would be if women like Sarah, Deborah, Nephi's Wife, or Mary the Mother of God had kept scripture journals and recorded what they had learned. That would be a real treasure.

Shannon gives some really good tips about getting started with scripture journaling and I can't encourage you enough to start doing this if you aren't already.

Also, here is how I use my scripture journal.


Link We are doing a "homemade" Christmas this year. Last year we were so focused on presents, presents, presents that we lost focus of what Christmas is all about. As my husband likes to say we were "grinchy" and it really wasn't a very good Christmas. So this year we thought we'd try to keep things simpler. But I am a bit stumped about what to give grandparents for Christmas. I'd like it to be something that the kids can make but I don't want it to be hard or expensive. Any ideas for easy, inexpensive gifts that kids can make for their grandparents that they will actually use?


I appreciated everyone's comments in my "Teaching Children about Sexual Intimacy" post. My hope was to get people talking and I'm glad that you did! I just wanted to share a link that Alea shared in her comment. It is from the blog Be One and is called "Miss Rain's Moment of Truth". In it the author shares (with her daughter's permission) the conversation they had when she first taught her about intimacy. It is fantastic. She gives so many good ideas for how to approach your children and how to talk to them about sex. I especially loved what she said at the end:
In the end, we all went to bed that night with humble and happy hearts. I had truly been inspired in my words. We have followed up with her a time or two since then to see if her little mind has formulated more questions or concerns, and truly she is at peace. This conversation has since led to the explanation of menstrual cycles and, she is equipped. It is empowering to send her to school, or anywhere knowing that the spirit has confirmed truth to her tiny, tender heart. It was one of the greatest conversations we have shared. One I look forward to in the future with her siblings.

Rick Shatz- President and CEO of the National coalition for the protection of children and families said this in reference to teaching our kids about sex, "Decide what the right age is- subtract three years- and you're only one year late, and that isn't a joke. This is the reality of where we are in the world today." If the "right age" seems to be 12, 13, or 14... then his statement and the next statement as well, rings true: John R. Sealy, Md.- assistant clinical professor of psychology- UCLA said, "It is important to have dialogue about sex with your children. Much younger than teen, certainly by 8 or 9."

Everyone will have a different experience as it is unique to each child. Arming them with powerful information and peace is the ultimate goal to fight the temptations that come in life. Namely promiscuity, pornography, infidelity, self abuse, and others. I am grateful to have Miss Rain's permission to share our great day to any bloggers who choose to read or want to learn. She hopes all of your kids "feel happy too."

I send my best to every parent - everywhere. Do all you can. Read the whole post.

Just in case you haven't noticed by now grammar and spelling are NOT my strong points. In fact, lets just be honest--- I STINK at them. Once in High School I was entered in the proofreading competition at a journalism conference. I had to read through 20 or 30 pages of text and correct the grammar, style, punctuation, and spelling. I thought that I had done a fairly good job but when I got my entry back I found that I had failed miserably. In fact I got the worst score my journalism teacher had ever seen in his 20 years of teaching. He kindly told me that even though I was a fantastic writer I was by far the worst copy editor he'd ever had on his newspaper staff! I haven't gotten much better since then.

I am a little self conscious of the fact that many of my blog posts have typos and spelling mistakes. The problem is that I often don't notice them at all. I will read through my post to proofread it and my mind will automatically fill in the missing words, skip over the repeated words, and ignore the misspelled words. The same is true of other people's writing. I NEVER notice misspellings or typos. So either other people don't ever make mistakes (possible) or my mind is just really good at seeing only what I want to see. My husband says that this is reflective of my personality-- that I am really good at seeing past people's mistakes and faults and look more on their heart. I'd like to think that this is true. It is sure sounds a lot better than just being a space cadet!

I guess what I am trying to get at is please forgive my typos and my misspellings. I try my hardest, but most of the time my posts are written during nap time or with a child crawling all over my lap. I wish I had more time to make sure they were polished and perfect but I don't. So please be patient with me and try to see past my mistakes... because I make a lot of them.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

If you want to link to your own "Five Things for Friday" post you can use the tool below to add your link. 1) Please link to the URL of your blog post and not your main blog and 2) Please include a link back here.


  1. Since my children were born, we have done the "home made" Christmas. We love it. My children's gifts to everyone is based on the children's interest at the time - not so much what the receiver would like. Meaning, one year my daughter wanted to draw pictures, she is very talented. She drew everyone pictures. All the pictures were either animals or fantasy creatures. Does everyone in our family and extended family like the animal/fantasy creature? No, but everyone loved getting something that my daughter made all her own.
    If a child is stumped on what to make or do. I use the Family Fun website. It has a ton of craft projects for all different age levels, holidays or other events. Most of the projects are 100% kid done, but a few need parental help. Hope you enjoy your "home made" Christmas - we love ours!

  2. Christmas used to be all about stuff, but now I prefer to give small gifts to children and grandchildren throughout the year. Grandchildren get so much stuff at Christmas that they don't remember half of it. This allows me to focus on the Savior during this season instead of running around and shopping. When they receive gifts not connected with have-to holidays and birthdays, they know I am really thinking about them.

  3. Thank you for the link to the conversation with little Rain. We have had some conversations with our 4 year old son about private parts (about girls and boys having different parts, and that they are sacred and we keep them covered up) but we haven't had any conversations about them being used together for any purpose - which we feel fine about right now, but I think before he starts school next year we will make sure he knows it all (and knows not to talk about it). We already have a rule that we don't talk about our private parts in front of people - we can talk about them alone in the bathroom or in our bedrooms (or with mom and dad in one of those places).

    Two Christmases ago, my little baby girls' first Christmas when she was about 9 months old, I had our 2 1/2 year old help me make her a little doll. I drew the outline for a doll shape on some extra fabric I had, and had him help me with the scissors cutting it out (which he LOVED) then I had him sit on my lap while I sewed it together. He got to stuff it with batting, and then I let him help draw on a face with permanent markers. We also made a little dress for the doll. It was fun for him to make something, and helping him think about what his little sister might like for Christmas (a doll) was helpful, I thought, in teaching him to think about others.

    This year I will be helping him make little "thumb" dolls (tubular dolls with little interchangeable clothes - our RS president has some she keeps in a little roll in her church bag and any time we have to wait for a meeting with the bishop after church the kids go straight to her and play with the little dolls) for his sister, and I will have his sister help me make him "dragon wings" (like those fairy wings little girls wear - because he loves dress up, but his dad doesn't really approve of him wearing fairy wings ;) )

    It has been fun for me to help the kids make gifts for their siblings. We try not to get caught up in Christmas, but we try to make the gift giving meaningful, and before we open gifts on Christmas morning, we re-read Matt 2:11 where the wise men bring gifts to baby Jesus, so we can remember 1.) why we give gifts at Christmas and 2.) who the greatest gift is, whose coming we celebrate at Christmas.

    We only started the Matt 2:11 reading last year, but I love how it causes us to stop for a minute before we get caught up in opening gifts and thinking about "what did I get!?" and instead directs our thoughts to the Savior and the reason why gift-giving is even a part of the Christmas celebration.

    I am making rice bag warmers for my parents and siblings this year for Christmas, so maybe have your children help make those for grandparents? The kids will have a blast helping sew (my kids LOVE to "help" sew) and then they can probably pour the rice in the bags all on their own. And it will be a meaningful and useful gift for grandparents. Maybe even use a solid color fabric and have the kids draw pictures with permanent markers on the fabric - then you get the kid's artwork on something really useful :)

  4. Christmas present for grandparents: Make of a video of your kids asnwering questions like, "What's your favorite thing about Grandma?" "What's your favorite memory with Grandpa?" "How old do you think Grandma is?" It's really cute.

  5. Ooh! I love the video for the grandparents idea. My parents expect the same thing every year now --it's not necessarily "homemade" (because we pay someone to publish it into a book) but each of my siblings submit about 30 photos from the past year with captions and my baby brother (he's 25. Not so baby anymore!) compiles it by family into a sort of yearbook. My mom and dad just LOVE it. This is our third or fourth year doing it, and my mom has said she wants nothing else but this book for the rest of their lives.

    If publishing is out, just have your kids make their own scrapbook and stick in a few photos of them. They could make their own yearbook, you know? Grandparents love things they can use and they don't need "stuff" anymore--and there's nothing like books/photos of their grandkids to bring out the happiness in grandparent's faces (so they can show off how amazing/smart/beautiful their grandkids are!).

  6. The linky you use really doesn't like me for some reason...LOL. Here is my link for this week:

    And just so you know - I love staying home with a newborn for a few Sundays too, it's a sweet time.

  7. Oh I struggle with Christmas, hope you guys have a great one!

    Thanks for the link to Miss Rain's conversation, I know that will come in handy in just a few short years.

  8. Our grandparents get framed handprint art every year, so they can see how my kids grow from year to year. I try not to do seasonal pictures, so they can display the pictures year-round.

  9. For the grandparents this year I printed out family history questionnaires that Montserrat put together, and instead of using scrapbook paper as the cover, the children are going to color pictures on card stock for them. I wanted to "encourage" the grandparents in leaving a written record for their grandchildren. :)

    You can get the questionnaire here:

  10. My niece made this for my parents last Christmas:

  11. "Grandkids Art of the Month Club" subscription. create a cute certificate with a doodle on it, and then promise to mail them something every month. If you address the envelopes all at once, it will make it easier to just grab an envelope and put junior's latest masterpiece inside.