Thought Box

New CHRISTMAS card/gift tag.

FREE Visiting Teaching AND Home Teaching handouts!!!

"CIRCLE OF SISTERS", compiled by JoLyn Brown, is a collection of short stories about Relief Society and Visiting Teaching that was published by Walnut Springs. Four of the book's 50 stories were written by me! Available NOW for purchase at Deseret Book and on Amazon. I am one of the featured authors on JoLyn's blog. Click HERE to see. Click HERE to read a review by Sandra Nazar at the Deseret News.

Enjoy Today ... Before It Slips Away) WON in the SHORT STORY CATEGORY for
Turning the Pages 2012 Book Of The Year Award! (STILL so cool!) Thanks to all of you who voted for me!! * To Read Reviews about this book, click on the MY BOOKS tab above. Makes a great gift!


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Thursday, October 2, 2014

Learning To Like Yourself

You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think.
~ A. A. Milne

We teach our children from the time they are young to be proud of who they are; to like who they are. We help them find what they are good at and encourage them to develop their talents. We take notice of their accomplishments and praise them for trying and doing their best. However, as adults, we often forget to put this into practice ourselves.

We need to notice what we accomplish throughout our day and give ourselves credit (and even reward) for what we've done. For some, getting out of bed and dressed is quite an accomplishment. Checking off just one or two of our "to-do's" is something to celebrate!

So is finding something about ourselves that we like. It's not always easy, especially when we're having one of those days (and we all have them). Think about what it is you like about yourself. It could be one of your features, a personality trait, something you're good at, something you've accomplished, something you made, something you did. Just find something you like about you and focus on that for a day. Be proud of who you are. It's not boasting or bragging … it's liking yourself. And that's a good thing.

If we are going to successfully teach our children to like who they are, we have to be brave enough to like ourselves first. After all, we teach by example.
Braver Stronger Smarter

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

You Are Enough

It's easy to feel small and insignificant in such a big world. It's not so easy to feel like our actions make a difference or have any impact on those around us.

Knowing we matter, matters a lot! Understanding we are important, is important. Realizing we make a difference, makes all the difference. We need to know and feel that we are enough! So how do we get to that point?

Start by knowing that you are a child of God. We all are. Regardless of our religion. Regardless of our status. Regardless of where we live or what we do. Regardless of our trials or shortcomings. We all matter. We are all important. And we can all make a difference because we are all God's children. He created the world. He created us. That means we have capabilities that even we are unaware of. We have potential to do great things. We are all royal sons and daughters of a Heavenly Father who knows us and loves us. But, we often lose sight of this and crumble when the world tells us we aren't good enough.

As a society, we try too hard to fit in, to impress, to one-up those around us. If we spent less time trying to "keep up with the Jones'" and more time trying to live up to our own divine potential, we'd realize that we are already enough, just the way we are. If there are people around us who tell us otherwise, we're hanging around the wrong people.

This world would not be the same if you weren't in it. It's that simple. So go through your day knowing that you are making a difference to someone, somewhere, somehow. You are doing it simply by being you. You Are Enough!
Knowing We Matter

Friday, April 4, 2014

Reach For The Stars

No longer do we live in a day where the traditional, stable careers are waiting for post-graduates with a degree in hand. Nor do we live in a time where it's strange to dream. The world is changing almost as fast as freshmen change their majors (I can say that because I was one of them), and dreams become realities ... if you make them.

Regardless of what your goals are, remember to reach for the stars! Today, the world encourages us to think outside the box, do the undaunted, test our limits. Don't be afraid to try new things and venture into unchartered territory. Create your own destiny and make things happen!

I watch as my 10 and 12-year-old sons create jaw-dropping 3-D rides and buildings on their iTouch devices within minutes. At first glance, adults might want to say, "Do something productive." But, who's to say my sons (among other millions of 10 and 12-year-olds) won't be the next designing engineers for Disney or the next great architects of the future? Of course, all things in moderation. (My boys have to earn their electronic time.)

Speaking of electronics, look at the apps that we use on our devices every day. Many apps are developed by teens and pre-teens! Learn how to code, add some imagination and you open doors for success ~ no matter how old (or young) you are.

But, it's not just about careers or technology. It's about having goals and working to make them a reality. Do you have a bucket list? What's on it? Perhaps it's running a marathon; writing a book; starting a clothing line; climbing Everest; traveling around the world; paying off your mortgage. There are no limits out there for what you can do! The only limits are the ones you put on yourself. So reach for the stars, spread your wings and fly. You never know what you can do 'til you try.
Reach For The Stars

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

You Are Loved

Valentine's Day is a holiday that brings on some really strong emotions: either you love it or you hate it!

If you are in a relationship, this holiday might mean flowers or a romantic dinner. If you're married, it might mean staying in, wondering if your spouse remembered to get a card. If you're married with kids, it might mean preparing treats to pass out at school and hoping your (child's) Valentine's box doesn't embarrass him/her when it's next to all the Pinterest-designed boxes.

If you're single, you just hate this holiday! End of story.

Well, whether or not you are a fan of this love-struck day, spend some time focusing on how many blessings you have and how many people (family, friends, neighbors) you have around you who love and care about you.

Don't look at this Valentine's Day as a day just for lovers, but as a day to celebrate those you love. Instead of "love notes", write notes of gratitude. Let your family, friends, and loved-ones know how much you appreciate them. Write notes to your spouse reminding them of your favorite memories of when you first met. Leave notes in your child's lunch, folder, or room telling them how proud you are of them. Send a text message to a sibling or parent who might live far away. Reconnect with a long-lost friend through social media or a traditional card-in-the-mail gesture. (Everyone still loves getting a little something special in the mail!)

If you spend a little time and put a little effort into praising those you love and showering them with your gratitude and love, you will be reminded that you really are surrounded by people who love you and you have much to be grateful for. Then, maybe this holiday will become one you treasure.
You Are Loved

Thursday, January 2, 2014

New Day's Resolution

With a new day comes a new start ~ a chance to begin again.
~ Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Making a New Year's resolution is a great idea, however, it can be extremely overwhelming! Most of us are great at making new goals on January 1, but when January 2 comes, we've already strayed from our path to the finish line. Feelings of failure kick in and we give up.

So, this year, instead of making unreasonable or unattainable long-term goals, break it down into simple day-to-day accomplishments. Make a New Day's resolution!

* When you wake up in the morning, every morning, make a new goal for the day. Keep a note pad by your bed, in your bathroom, on your phone ~ wherever you will see it ~ and write it down.

* Put a reminder on your phone to go off at Noon, just to "check" yourself.

* At the end of the day, decide how you did and figure out tomorrow's New Day's Resolution. If you didn't quite accomplish what you wanted to, re-set the same goal or move on and start fresh tomorrow. New day ~ new goal.

Goals will be much more attainable if take things one day at a time instead of stressing about an entire year's worth of commitment. As we see our daily progress, we will feel more motivated to continue.

Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints points out in this month's First Presidency message, "Even though we might fall short of our finish line, just continuing the journey will make us greater than we were before."

Failure is something we will all face from time to time. Not letting failure stop us is the key to staying on our path to the finish line.
A New Day

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Stable Few

Are you one of the Inn crowd,
or one of the Stable few?

I love this time of year when the world around us seems a little friendlier; people are more aware of the needs of others; hearts are touched; and love, hope, and forgiveness are in the air.

It's no coincidence that this spirit surrounds us at Christmas time because it's a holiday focused on Christ. His life was the perfect example of charity, love, hope, and forgiveness.

We should make an effort to shadow these Christ-like traits every day of the year, not just at Christmas. Helping those in need, reading our scriptures, thinking of others, having our hearts centered around Christ ... we need to make these part of our daily lives, not just annual events or Christmas traditions. Having that spirit of Christ with us every day shows our continuous love and gratitude for Him.

Everywhere you look, right now, people are displaying acts of kindness because that's what you do at Christmas ... and it's wonderful! But, after the holidays are over and the focus of "good will toward men" is put to rest until next Christmas, be aware of your daily deeds. Hold on tight to those Christ-like traits and continue being a light for those around you. It may not be the "inn" thing to do in January or July, but the "stable" followers of Christ will find they can make a difference in people's lives year round.
Inn Crowd Stable Few

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A Thankful Heart

In the midst of all the hustle and bustle this weekend, make sure you tell those around you how much you love them. Be aware of what you've been blessed with and take the time to pay it forward. We all have something to be thankful for ... even those pesky things in life that we think we'd be better off without!

I posted this "poem" last year and love it so I'm doing it again in honor of Thanksgiving. Here's to remembering the blessings behind everything in our lives.
I Am Thankful For ...