Friday, August 24, 2012

Five Things for Friday, 46th Edition


During Family Home Evening on Monday night we drew some pictures for our lesson and Jon suggested that we could mail them to his brother who is serving a mission. Asher was excited about that but Rose announced that she wanted to mail her picture to Heavenly Father. When they were done with their pictures they both ran out and put them in the mail box, no envelope or anything... just stuck them in and closed the door. I meant to go back out later that night and get the pictures out of the mail box but I forgot. So the next day when I went to go get the mail I found all their pictures still sitting in the mail box. I took those pictures out and had a good chuckle about it. I am sure that it must have made our mail carrier smile.

Then yesterday I went out to check the mail and when I  opened the mail box. I saw this.

Asher must have drawn another picture and come out on his own and put it in the mail box. It was really sweet, and it just touched my heart. He has been doing so many little acts of kindness lately, without any encouragement. A few weeks ago I heard him come in the house and I asked him what he had been doing. He told me that he had taken our neighbors a present.

"Really?" I asked a little worried about what this present might have been.

"Yeah, I drew them a picture and put it in a box with some leaves."

"Where did you leave it."

"On their front porch. Then when they come out they will see it and be happy."

He melted my heart. He took his "gift" over to the elderly couple who lives by us, whom we haven't met yet, and I am sure they were probably really confused when they opened up their door! I really should go over and introduce myself and explain to them that if they find anymore boxes of leaves with a picture inside that it is probably from my little boy with such a big heart.


This weekend the University of Utah is hosting a wonderful conference called "Women and the LDS Church: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives". It is sponsored by the LDS Church History Library and has a really impressive line up of speakers. Tonight at the SLC Library the keynote speaker will be Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, a professor of History at Harvard and a brilliant feminist writer. She will also be participating in a panel discussion on the history of LDS women on Saturday morning. And they are having several other panel discussions throughout the day which should be amazing. The conference is  free so if you are free tomorrow and close to SLC it would be worth your time!


Also if you live in the SLC area I'd thought I'd let you know that The Nashville Tribute Band is having their 3rd Annual Concert at the Sandy Amphitheater on Saturday night. I think that there are still tickets available! Also if you don't live in the SLC area, check out their list of events they will be having several other concerts this month and there might be one close by!


 Does anyone know of a good curriculum that is designed to teach children virtues and Christ-like attributes? As I have been praying about what the Lord wants me to be  teaching my children  I keep feeling impressed that I really need to be focusing on developing their spirits more than their minds right now. I have tried using the LDS Primary manuals, but they aren't exactly what I want.  I would love to find a curriculum that focuses on developing one specific virtue each month and has bible stories, activities and story books that reinforce that virtue. I have started to put together my own but it is a lot of work! I was just wondering if anyone knew of anything else out there that is already put together. Free would be best, but at this point I might be willing to buy something too!


If you haven't ordered a copy of our book "The Gift of Giving Life" yet (or if you wanted to get more copies) now would be a great time to do it. We are offering two free gifts for those who order the book through our website! We make about twice as much money of the book when people buy it through our website versus Amazon and even though we aren't in this to make money we do need to pay ourselves back for the money we invested to get it published.

So if you buy the book from this link you will get 2 free gifts.
  1. The Top Three Tips to Enjoy Your Birth a 30 page e-book written by Sheridan
  2. I am Happy, I am Good Affirmations for Kids MP3 created by Felice
 My kids and I have been listening to Felice's affirmation CD and it is wonderful. They really love it. We have also been doing the "I am Happy, I am Good Meditation" (I posted it below) every day and they love it. It isn't uncommon to hear one of my children now walking around the house bouncing their fingers and singing "I am good, I am good, I am good." So what I am trying to say is that these are really great gifts! So if you have been thinking about ordering the book, now would be a good time to!

Have a Happy and Good 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. I don't know if this is exactly what you're looking for, but I love a book called "The Family Virtues Guide" by Linda Kavelin Popov. It lists 52 virtues (for example, Compassion, Courage, Forgiveness, Humility, Joyfulness, Orderliness, Reliability, Reverence, Tact, and Unity), includes a scripture verse about the virtue, defines the virtue in terms kids can understand, explains why it's important, describes what the virtue looks like in practice, provides some examples to discuss as a family and ideas on how to tell if you're practicing the virtue. We've used the book for many Family Home Evening lessons and then focused on that virtue for the week and it really helps the kids understand and put them into practice. I got the book online at Amazon for less than $15.

  2. Virtues resources for purchase:
    We Choose Virtues: This one I was given to review and it's cute.

    I'm also intrigued by Character First sets: They are more in depth and use an animal to represent the qualities, stories, and a lot more material to use over time for each virtue I think than We Choos Virtues, look at their download sample link.

    You can learn more about them on their website here: They have things for the workplace as well, but under students and families is what I like and linked first.

    Here are their character qualities and definitions:

    Here are the qualities covered in each of the elementary levels from the first link:

    This is free short stories for kids organized by values:

    Here is another site with free online stories to teach values to kids:

    I'm not sure if any of these are really what you want, but they're a place to start. Also, have you seen the download of character qualities and their opposites with scriptures from the bible here:

  3. I'm also looking for something good for teaching kids virtues. I did come across this one recently which uses The Book of Virtues, but haven't had a chance to look through it.

  4. The Eyres have a book that I used in our homeschool last year. "Teaching your children Values" There are 12 values with suggestions for activities. You could use that as a start and then pull together other resources.

    If you go to the conference, please share some of your notes/thoughts. I absolutely loved Laurel T. Ulrich's book "The Midwife's Tale." It blew me away how well researched it was. She truly brought to life a period of history from a very simple journal. I would be fascinated to hear what she has to say this weekend. Thanks!

  5. I'm a single sister so as of yet I don't have any experience with teaching virtues and values to my children. But I read a book recently that was just absolutely wonderful, it's called: Happy Like Jesus--Lessons from Jesus Christ on How to Live written by: D. Kelly Ogden. He follows a similar pattern Pres. Hinckley used when he gave his classic "Be"s address, and he focuses on 18 different virtues the Savior emulated and why and how we can develop them. Here's the list:
    1.Be Happy
    2.Be Holy
    3.Be Spiritually Minded
    4.Be Humble
    5.Be Knowledgeable
    6.Be Serviceable
    7.Be Prayerful
    8.Be Peaceful
    9.Be Fruitful
    10.Be Obedient
    11.Be Loving
    12.Be Forgiving
    13.Be Long-Suffering
    14.Be Persevering
    15.Be United
    16.Be Dedicated
    17.Be Disciplined
    18.Be Christlike
    If you go to you can watch a short 6 minute video about the book. It's really written for adults rather than children, but I think it could be a useful tool for you in developing your own system.

    Chapter 6 of "Preach My Gosepl" is specifically dedicated to Christlike Attributes and how we can develop them.

    Two talks I absolutely love are: "The Joy of Womanhood" by: Margaret D. Nadauld and "The Virtues of Righteous Daughters of God" by: Pres. James E. Faust. In my opinion they apply to everyone regardless of gender because they are all attributes of the Savior.

    Just some suggestions I thought I'd pass along! Good luck!

  6. I grew up with music and stories from the Power Tunes series. Each song goes along with a story from the book. The music is a little cheesy, yes, but seemed fun as a kid!
    Book ~
    Music ~
    (if you scroll down you can listen to samples...I can still remember the words to the songs about attitude, caring, & overcoming...LOL!)

  7. Maybe this is nothing like what you're looking for, but since I saw it right after reading your 5 post, I figured I'd share the link. Best wishes in finding what will work best for you with your kiddos! (I'm with you on working on character development most heavily... my eldest is 8 and I really feel this focus has been a huge blessing to her/us.) Oh, also, CQLA (Character Quality Language Arts) might be of interest to you when your littles are around 2nd grade Language Arts. Maybe they already are! I don't read here enough to know that much about your kiddos. Sorry! :)

  8. Heather, can we please get together? Please? I think I must live pretty close to you. :) I'll email ya!
    Remember the quiet book project? What if we did something similar but with LDS-based curriculum for little ones? Let me know, I'd LOVE to organize it!

    I also LOVE the FHE manual the church produces, and each lesson is adapted for little ones. I keep meaning to do this too.

    One thing I try to do is just cycle through all the pictures in the Gospel Art kit. This week I told the story of Lehi & Nephi using some hand puppets I have and my kids LOVED it! The sky is the limit!

    Also, I think it is important to bring the Gospel into every day aspects of life. And I follow my kids' leads. And ask a lot of questions! I want to teach them correct principles so they can govern themselves!

  9. It's not Church-based, but the Joy School curriculum focuses on character more than academics. Things like manners, obedience, etc.

  10. thanks for asking the question in bullet #5. I don't have anything to offer, but was very eager to read the comments!

  11. I have one more to add.
    it's quite pricey, but can maybe be found used. Brite Music does Safety Kids, which teaches children about stranger danger, finding ways to be happy without turning to drugs (yes, it's for younger children...I had one as a child and LOVED it!!) and other fun ways to learn basic rules of safety. Their Standin' Tall set is about morals and virtues, and there are others on reading and writing, and so forth. Most of their stuff is taught using catchy songs that the children quickly memorize. I can still remember some of them from the one tape I had as a child.

  12. Not sure if these have been posted yet but I thought of the book "Teaching your children values" by Linda and Richard Eyre and also "Standing for something" By Gordon B. Hinckley I know the last one had several FHE binders made for super saturdays- maybe check
    Also I just wanted to thank you for your blog! I check it frequently and love being insprired!