It's been a busy Spring and start to Summer.  We own a shaved ice stand so summer is a CrAzY time around our house.  I hadn't had a chance to get outside and plant my little flower garden.  I have a small spot in front of my house.  It used to be quite large and wrapped around the porch.  Not anymore!  It's actually quite perfect for me now.  I love to plant and to weed and to be outside in the dirt.  But I don't have the time, or desire, to have a large area of plants.  Finally on Monday night for Family Home Evening we got outside and got it done.  I put my kids and hubby to work.  I forgot to take a before picture, but just picture this spot grown over with grass and weeds.  It was not beautiful.  It is now.  (The bigger green plants in back are mums.  They will bloom in the Fall and are just gorgeous!!)

I am on a mission to simplify my life - which includes my house and my belongings.  I simplified my flower garden.  It is small and simple, but still just as beautiful. It will be easy to maintain and to weed. I believe that as a culture we have way too much "stuff".  I have realized this more and more as I get rid of things in my home.  I don't miss them, and my life seems to be lighter, simpler, more enjoyable.  There is something to be said about not having a lot of "things".

What can you do today to simplify, organize, or change today?  See how it makes you feel.  I know it will make you have a brighter day!

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Have a Great Day

Yesterday, while driving through the little town of Fairview, Utah, this sign greeted me as I left town.  It really did make my day.  What a fun sign to see!  Thank you, Gerald & Rhea Anderson, for bringing sunshine to my day, while traveling through a town you obviously love.

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The Farming Game

The past few days my son and I have been playing The Farming Game.  It's a game I played growing up, and am so happy at least one of my kids likes it as much as I do.  It is set on the kitchen counter (annoying everyone else) until we get done.  We only can play it for about 30 minutes each day, but we're close to having a winner (you win when you get $250,000).  Great summer memories!

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Happy Trees

This picture just makes me smile.  We need more signs like this on our roads.

Picture is from: The Meta Picture 

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Conquering Fear

This is me on the pole about to step out onto the wire.

This week I was able to go to Girls Camp.  This is a camp for girls ages 12-18 in my church.  We attended a camp near Heber City, UT.  It's a beautiful place, high in the mountains.  One of the confidence courses (similar to ropes course type activities) was a zip line.  You had to climb up this tall power pole to a wire that you then shuffled along to get to the perch where you were hooked up to the zip line, then you were able to fly.

One girl, Kaylee, was SCARED TO DEATH to go.  She didn't have to, but was encouraged to try it.  The other girls were so sweet to her, trying to calm her and to calmly let her know that she could be brave and try it and that she could do it!  Kaylee was willing to give it a try.  She got harnessed up, helmet on, and told the safety rope holder "climber ready".  She took 4 steps up the pole and started sobbing - hard!  Saying she couldn't do it.  The rest of us in our group sat silent as she climbed so she could be calm.  One girl in particular - Megan - was asked by Kaylee if she would help her through this terrifying challenge.  Megan calmly started talking to Kaylee telling her she could do this and to take one more step up, then another, then another.  Kaylee finally made it up the pole to where she would now have to step onto the wire.  Sobbing, almost uncontrollably.  Yelling out "I can't do this, I'm going to fall!".  Megan calmly talked her through taking one step up onto the wire.  She did.

On the other side of the wire (on the perch) stood an elderly man who voluntarily serves with his wife and 2 other couples at this camp all summer long.  He helps all the girls at this camp at this particular station.  He knew exactly what to say.  Kaylee is clinging for her life (or so she thinks) to the last hand hold on the pole.  Sobbing.  The man calmly asks her her name.  We tell him from the ground.  He begins calling her by name and asking her if she would like him to meet her half way across the wire.  She nods yes.  Then asks if he can come more than half way.  He calmly convinces her to step onto the wire to see how it feels.  Still sobbing she steps on the wire with one foot.  Still sobbing.  She steps on with her other foot.  Sobbing.  He steps on the wire headed towards her.  Kaylee is still sobbing and frozen where she's at.  She can't move.  He calmly tells her to grab the rope handle and to shuffle towards him.  She makes it half way and instead of grabbing her hand, he gently hands her the next rope, slowly moving back towards the perch hoping Kaylee will keep coming.  One rope done, another rope done.  She's almost there!  Still sobbing the elderly man gently hands her the last rope to shuffle towards.  She grabs it.  He reaches out his hand to hers and she is on the perch.  She made it.  We scream and clap and holler her name.  She did it!  She did it!

She gets harnessed onto the zip line and off she goes.  She's made it.  She conquered her fear.

The love that was expressed to Kaylee that night, particularly from Megan, was unbelievable.  It was tear jerking.  What an experience this was and to witness such love from a group of girls to the one who needed it most at that moment.  Needless to say, Kaylee was the hero of the day to every single one of those girls and leaders who witnessed her terrifying, yet courageous act.

Doing scary things is hard.  Conquering those fears is even harder.  I am so proud of you, Kaylee, for the courage you exhibited.

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Helping the Elderly

It always makes my heart beam with sunshine when I see someone helping another.  In the grocery store on Saturday a sweet little old lady (in her ride-on cart) was trying to get her groceries onto the belt.  A stunning young lady in line behind her stepped up and asked if she could help.  The older lady said yes, and there it was.  A simply act of kindness.  A simple acceptance of service. A day made brighter by another generous soul.

Thank you, sweet young lady, for doing something I should have done, but noticed too late.

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